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Even More Ohio Trivia

There's plenty of trivial things to do in Ohio and even more trivial information about the state that is easy to overlook. Such as Ohio is the 7th largest state in population in the nation, or that 25 percent is of German background, 12 percent Irish and 6 percent Italian. Ohio is also the largest Swiss cheese producer in the country producing more than 10 million pounds each year. Ohio ranks second in egg production and third in tomatoes, fifth in maple syrup ranks, fifth in soybean and sweet corn production, sixth in cucumbers and seventh in the number of chickens sold.

That's a lot of trivial trivia, but did you know the inventor of chewing gum was Amos Tyler of Toledo who created the stuff back in 1869. He was awarded a patent for mixing up a concoction of white rosin and olive oil, which he heated and mixed thoroughly. After the mixture cooled, it had a white color. Then, Tyler cut his product into sticks and packaged each strip individually.

Changing Climates

Anyone that has lived in Ohio for more than a day has probably heard the old expression: "If you don't like the weather, just wait a few minutes, and it will change." Because of the state's unique position, the weather does change frequently. In the winter we get arctic blasts, lake-effect snows, and sometimes thunderstorms from clashing fronts. Tornados are a regular threat, especially during the warmer months, but tornados have been spotted in Ohio during every month.

Ohio has even been hit by multiple hurricanes over the year, but the most damage was caused by Hurricane Ike which snuck up on us on a beautiful day in early September 2008. The main track of the storm went through Indiana, but the low pressure area created a large vacuum that caused sustained wind speeds in excess of 80mph. Without a drop of rain, or gathering clouds, the hurricane force winds suddenly swept across the state leaving 1000s of homeowners in the dark for days and causing damage estimates to approach the $1 billion, making it the second most expensive storm to ever hit the state. The most expensive storm was the tornado that struck through the heart of Xenia in 1974.

Ohio Rains

Everyone knows how much rain Seattle gets every year, but did you know that Ohio gets even more? On average, Seattle gets about 36" every year or so, while Ohio gets about 40" each year.

Most Extreme Weather

The hottest day in Ohio came back in 1934 when temperatures climbed well above 100 on its way to 113 degrees on July 21. It was a day in Gallipolis that citizens could swear it was hot enough to fry eggs on the sidewalk. That year was also the hottest summer on record for all of Ohio. The coldest day on record came in 1899 when the temperature dropped to a minus 39 in Milligan Ohio.

Ohio State University football fans all know about the great snow bowl of 1950. In fact, even though the stadium at the time could only seat about 66,000 fans, approximately half of the 200+ million fans who have attended games at the famous horseshoe, also seem to claim to being in attendance for that famous game. On that particular weekend, a nasty snow storm lasting 4 days from November 23 - 27 had winds hitting 60+ mph, with a minimum of 12" of snow falling across the state, and snow drifts commonly reaching 25' in depth.

Other state facts

Size matters: The average size of Ohio's counties are about 400+ square miles. The one big exception to this is Ashtabula that is 711 square miles. It is also in the most northern county.

Cranberry Bog: In central Ohio at Buckeye Lake, there is a cranberry bog. This is a piece of land left over from previous ice ages that have been frequent visitors to the state over the years. What makes this particular cranberry bog special is that it is the only cranberry bog in the known world that is floating! Special tours are periodically conducted of the bog on special platforms that have been laid down to help prevent further erosion of the site.