“Secret Cincinnati”

New book uncovers some Ohio surprises.

Secret Cincinnati
"Secret Cincinnati A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful and Obscure" is author Kathryn Witt’s fifth book.

There are a million stories in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Secret Cincinnati, a new book by Kentucky author Kathryn Witt, tells 89 of them—or at least shares enough about each of these “weird, wonderful and obscure” places to entice visitors to come see them in person.

Is it safe to photograph bobolinks at a once-contaminated nuclear weapons plant? Is it possible to channel a medium from whatever realm she inhabits in the afterlife? Is that really a bathtub hanging from the ceiling?

Did you know you can watch an unscripted star show with an audience of only 18? Hear a free concert outdoors in the dead of winter? Conduct your own paranormal investigation at a honky-tonk? Check out an 80-proof liquor at a very different kind of “library.” See the world’s largest steam engines? Browse and buy animal skulls?

Secret Cincinnati
This celebrity of the culinary world, known simply as Big Boy, has roots in Cincinnati, Ohio.

These are some of the questions Secret Cincinnati answers.

Secret Cincinnati
Spend the day hanging out with a bunch of dummies at Vent Haven Museum, the world’s only museum dedicated to ventriloquism.

Designed like a scavenger hunt, the book is a good time for all ages, families, couples and groups of friends. The majority of secrets are free-admission or no cost attractions—more than 50, in fact—including museums and monuments, gardens and galleries, tours and trails, parks, a preserve and a theatrical production, making outings very affordable. Another handful of secrets are venues where it’s great fun to poke around and the browsing is free.

Secret Cincinnati
See thousands of maneki-neko, the “legendary beckoning cat,” at the Lucky Cat Museum in Cincinnati.

Several restaurants are featured in the book, each with an intriguing secret all their own to share, such as the oldest bar in Cincinnati that was used as a key setting for the short-lived Kathy Bates TV drama, “Harry’s Law,” as well as a canvas for three of the world’s greatest street artists. Another is famous as the original location of one of food-dom’s most iconic symbols. And yet another takes its inspiration from Mozart and Malher, Beethoven and Bach.

Secret Cincinnati
The signs at the American Sign Museum come from all over the United States and represent
every decade going back a century.

Secret Cincinnati: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful and Obscure ($20.95), with photographs by John Witt, is part of publisher Reedy Press’ “Secret” series. Autographed books are available through Kathy’s website at www.KathyWitt.com and include a customized bookmark so readers can check off their adventures along the way. For more information, email the author at KathyWitt24@gmail.com. The book is also available at all bookstores and online at www.Amazon.com, www.JosephBeth.com and www.BarnesandNoble.com.

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