Bill Sloat over at The Daily Bellweather has challenged the Ohio blogosphere to post something positive about Ohio, to help pull us out of the blues, as diagnosed by Gov. Strickland.

Piece of cake.

You might not be aware of it, but Ohio hosts quite a diversity of cultures. Many of the immigrant communities are older – ie, their ancestors came to Ohio many generations ago – but the local flavor imparted by those Old World cultures can still be found. You’ve got Irish working communities. Polish and German subcultures. Many small towns in Ohio have their own unique feel. We have a large Appalachian region. There are a large number of historic Native American sites here.

Ohio has played a major (and at times quite unique) role in this country’s history. We were pivotal to the North in the Civil War; many slaves moving north on the Underground Railroad passed thru Ohio, we provided more soldiers per-capita than any other state, and the top 3 Union generals all came from Ohio. We are the only state to engage with another state in a shooting war. The Toledo War was pretty pathetic as wars go, but it was unique.

We have several excellent cities. None are what I could call “perfect”, but each has some uniqueness to it that can’t quite be found anywhere else, be it chili, the Gallery Hop, or a rock and roll museum.

If you like sports, you quite literally can’t do better. Football may have been an Ivy League invention, but it grew up here. We have franchises in every sport, and a university in the middle of the state that compares favorably to any in the country in athletics.

Of course, our educational excellence does not end with athletics. We have a staggering number of colleges and universities in Ohio, and some of them (including that one really good at athletics) are quite good academically as well.

We are the birthplace of aviation. One of the greatest aviation-related research facilities in the world is located here.

We have some of the top hospital facilities in the world. We have 3 of the top 8 public library systems in the nation.

We have a high speed network – formerly known as the Third Frontier Network, now known as OSCnet – that provides a link for schools from the K thru university level, and for businesses thruout the state, to research facilities designed to help keep Ohio ahead of competitors in science and technology (and thus high-tech business as well). This network is one of very few in the country with it’s level of penetration and capability.

We have seasons.

And we have a lot more.

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