Are you planning a visit to Youngstown State University this fall? Whether you’re cheering on the Penguins at a football game, or visiting the Ward Beecher Planetarium, it’s a perfect opportunity to visit Downtown Youngstown and experience all sorts of local restaurants, breweries and attractions.
On Saturday, October 12, the Youngstown State Penguins take on the South Dakota State Jackrabbits for their annual Homecoming game. The festivities kick off on Saturday with the traditional Homecoming Parade at 4:00pm. Each year, floats, bands, student organizations and many others gather on Wood Street and march up Fifth Avenue, past the stadium, with crowds on both the East and West sides of the street. Make sure to arrive to the Stadium early for a good spot along the parade route! The football game follows the parade, with kickoff at 6:00pm. For tickets to the Homecoming game, call 330-941-1YSU or purchase them online. Remaining home games of the regular season are: October 26, November 2, and November 23.
Casual Eats Downtown
Grab a casual bite to eat at any of the delicious, locally owned restaurants in Downtown Youngstown.
- O’Donald’s Irish Pub & Grill – think traditional Irish dishes with a modern twist
- The Federal – known for their 13+ specialty burgers and delicious Burger Bar
- The Kitchen Post – a small menu of eclectic dishes
- Suzie’s Dogs & Drafts – a gourmet hot dog shop with 59 topping options
- Rhine Haus Bier Hall – German beer house with pretzels, pierogies and polka music
- Avalon Downtown Pizzeria – try one of their famous, thick-crust pizzas or their new cauliflower crust pizzas
- Cassese’s MVR – authentic Italian food and outdoor bocce courts
- Charlie Staples BBQ – great barbecue with lots of New Orleans décor
Elegant Places to Eat Downtown
While you’ll find a plethora of delicious, casual restaurants Downtown, you’ll also come across a few elegant spots worth visiting – especially if you’re celebrating a special occasion! For authentic Italian dishes, made mostly from ingredients imported from Italy, take a seat at Roberto’s Italian Ristorante. Or for old-time American bistro cuisine, visit Bistro 1907 located in the DoubleTree Downtown. Keep in mind: This restaurant will turn away guests wearing hats, graphic tees or ripped jeans, so dress accordingly. V2 Wine Bar Trattoria is another classy Downtown spot, known for their wide selection of wines, handcrafted pizzas and Italian small plates.
When you’re ready to grab a drink or two after the game, stay Downtown! At Whistle and Keg, expect a unique self-service craft beer and wine taproom with 44 different drinks on tap. How does it work? Visitors receive a wristband and glass, scan their band on any of the tap screens, pour, then pay by the ounce. Noble Creature Cask House is a craft brewery located in an old church-turned-tap room. Imbibe Martini Bar offers 121 varieties of martinis and Ryes Craft Beer & Whiskey has a selection of 114 American craft beers.
Family-Friendly Activities Downtown
Families visiting YSU: Keep the kids entertained with a visit to any of the nearby, family-friendly attractions! Stay right on YSU’s campus and catch a special (free) astronomy program at the Ward Beecher Planetarium. Fall programs include the Halloween horror feature, Nightlights, and non-scary Night-LITE. Or, treat the kids to a day at OH WOW! Children’s Center for Science & Technology located on W. Federal St. in Downtown Youngstown. It’s a world-class children’s museum with over 60 hands-on interactive exhibits focused on science, technology, engineering and math. Visitors also have the chance to explore the museum’s 11 different galleries.
Where to Stay
With so much to do and explore, why not make a weekend out of your visit to Youngstown State? Local hotels in the Austintown, Boardman, Canfield and North Lima areas are all within minutes of downtown Youngstown. If you’re looking to stay right near YSU and many downtown attractions, book a night or two at the DoubleTree Youngstown Downtown. Located inside the historic Stambaugh Building, the hotel was fully renovated to include today’s modern amenities, while preserving the building’s historic charm.
Downtown Youngstown is brimming with exciting attractions and must-try local restaurants. So, after you visit Youngstown State University this fall, make sure to explore Downtown and enjoy all it has to offer. For more information, visit our Facebook page or our website.