The historic downtown has become a destination for unique shops, delicious food and a lively nightlife, while a beautiful lakefront awaits just a few miles away. Consider adding Willoughby to your “must visit” list so you can experience everything it has to offer.
A mix of small-town character and a thriving food & drink scene make Willoughby an alluring city for visitors and residents alike. The historic downtown is a destination for unique shops, award-winning food, and vibrant nightlife. Over 185 acres of parks and famously beautiful sunsets offer nature lovers the chance to experience some of Lake County’s most popular outdoor recreational activities. Many annual events, including ArtsFest and the Rib Burnoff, draw crowds from all over the area.
Willoughby’s downtown offers some of the most diverse flavors in the area, with over 20 restaurants ranging from family-friendly to fine dining. Many buildings downtown have underground tunnels that once connected speakeasies during the Prohibition Era. Original buildings have been repurposed to house unique shops offering artisan jewelry and gifts, trendy clothing, or one-of-a-kind antiques. Willoughby’s historic downtown is over 200 years old and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Frequented by residents, Osborne Park includes a pool, baseball fields, disc golf, and a walking trail along Lake Erie. True to its name, Sunset Park displays some of the most picturesque sunsets in the area. The Chagrin River flows around Daniels Park, Todd Field, and Chagrin River Park. Known for its steelhead fishing, Chagrin River Park draws anglers from near and far each season.
Willoughby hosts four annual events each summer, held on the third Saturday of each month that draw crowds of thousands–The Rib Burn Off, the Classic Car Cruise-In, ArtsFest, and Last Stop Willoughby. In May is the Rib Burn Off, where local and national chefs compete for the title of “Best Ribs” and bands play on 3 stages. Over 700 beautiful cars line the streets of downtown for June’s Classic Car Cruise-In. Find a one-of-a-kind piece during July’s ArtsFest, featuring over 140 juried artists, musicians, and vendors. Last Stop Willoughby in August is a free, family friendly event in honor of the Twilight Zone’s episode of the same name. This event offers trolley rides, trains, a kids zone, and parade. Other summer events include the Outdoor Market and a free summer concert series on Thursdays at Wes Point Park during July and August. New for 2019, look for Second Saturdays on Second Street.