Fossil Tour for Earth Day
(Columbus, OH)—The Ohio Statehouse invites families and friends to a FREE fossil tour on Saturday, April 20 from noon until 1:30 p.m. During this special tour, visitors will see fossil specimens, and then find similar fossils in the limestone walls and floors of the Ohio Statehouse.

The tour starts on the ground floor of the Ohio Statehouse. Fossils will be displayed by Dale M. Gnidovec, Curator of the OSU Orton Geological Museum. Mark Peter, Paleontologist at ODNR Division of Geological Survey, will lead the group inside and outside the Ohio Statehouse.

Each visitor will receive a free copy of the booklet, Statehouse Fossils: A Guide to Fossils of the Ohio Capitol, by Mark E. Peter. The booklet is provided by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological Survey.

Earth Day is celebrated on April 22 every year to encourage global conservation efforts and environmental protection. These events encourage young learners to explore the natural world and engage the public in efforts to care for our planet.

Photos are available on the Ohio Statehouse website:

This special tour is free and open to the public. Visitors may meet in the Worthington Center on the ground floor of the Ohio Statehouse. Registration is not required, but individuals or organizations that want to schedule a group to attend the tour, should contact Katie Montgomery at 614-728-3726 or

Half-staff flags at the Ohio Statehouse
In honor of the life and service of former State Senator C.J. Prentiss, Governor Mike DeWine has ordered the flags of the United States and the state of Ohio to be flown at half-staff upon all public buildings and grounds throughout Cuyahoga County and at the Ohio Statehouse, Vern Riffe Center, and Rhodes Tower from sunrise to sunset on the day of her funeral, April 13, 2024.

Half-staff flags at the Ohio Statehouse
In honor of the life and service of former State Representative Brigid Kelly, the flags of the United States and the state of Ohio will be flown at half-staff upon all public buildings and grounds throughout Hamilton County, the Ohio Statehouse, Vern Riffe Center, and Rhodes Tower from sunrise to sunset on the day of her funeral, April 4, 2024.
All other public buildings and grounds throughout the state may fly the flags of the United States and the state of Ohio at half-staff at their discretion for the same time period.

Beecher Sisters -- Lisa & Steve Ball
March is recognized nationally as Women's History Month. The Ohio Statehouse has two events and an exhibit planned for March to celebrate women’s achievements.

“The Beecher Sisters: 19th Century Social Reformers” will be presented Monday, March 11 from noon to 1 p.m. in the Atrium by Christina Hartlieb of the Harriet Beecher Stowe House. The performance follows the stories of the four Beecher sisters who were educators, suffragettes and abolitionists in the 1800s. Harriet Beecher Stowe and her sisters represented social change in 1800s America by using their Power of Voice in a time when women’s voices were not often heard.

On Tuesday, March 26, from noon to 1 p.m., “The Music of The Women of the Civil War,” performed by Steve and Lisa Ball, will take place in the Atrium. The musicians will sing popular tunes from the era and share the stories of women who worked tirelessly to transform the world during that time who were performers, musicians, activists and writers.

Both events are free and open to the public and are planned to be video recorded on They are 45-minute-long events, with an additional 15 minutes for Q&A.

The Athena Art exhibit will be displayed in the House South Hallway from March 5 to March 27. Formed in 1903, the Athena Art Society is the oldest continuous women’s art organization in the country. Their mission continues to promote and develop the visual arts and stimulate community participation. Members of this Toledo, Ohio group will exhibit original art works with the theme, “Original Explorations,” during Women’s History Month 2024.

No reservations are required, but if you have a group and would like to attend, please contact Katie Montgomery at 614-728-3726 or


2024 Great Ohioans
(Columbus, Ohio)- The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) and the Capitol Square Foundation announce the 2024 Great Ohioan Award recipients. The Capitol Square Foundation presented the selected individuals from nominations submitted by citizens and organizations across Ohio.

The 2024 Great Ohioan awardees are aerospace engineer Eugene Kranz, illustrator Howard Chandler Christy and former U.S. House Representative John Bingham.

Eugene "Gene" Kranz is an American aerospace engineer who worked for the U.S. Air Force and NASA. He is most notably known as the Flight Director for the Apollo 13 mission, where the oxygen tank partially exploded enroute to the Moon. Gene's leadership abilities helped get the Apollo 13 crew back to Earth safely against all odds. He is from Toledo, Ohio.

Howard Chandler Christy was an American artist and illustrator from Morgan County, Ohio. Christy is memorable for his 'Christy Girls,' illustrations of beautiful, strong, witty women who supported America during times of war and encouraged others to do so too. Christy was a rising star in the new age of magazine illustrations, but he also is known for painting "The Signing of the Constitution," which now hangs in the U.S. Capitol Building's Rotunda. Christy painted “The Signing of the Treaty of Greene Ville” and several other artworks at the Ohio Statehouse.

John Bingham is a former member of the United States House of Representatives. Republican Bingham was notorious for his views on anti-slavery. He is credited as "the James Madison of the 14th Amendment" because of his proposal to add what is now known as the Equal Protection Clause. He also served as a prosecutor for John Wilkes Booth's co-conspirators and presented the prosecutions for President Andrew Johnson's impeachment trials. He grew up in Cadiz, Ohio.

"These three selections represent Ohio's diversity in different fields of endeavor. An artist, a dedicated public servant and a leader in the United States' effort in space exploration. All three made profound contributions to Ohio's unique place in national and world history," said Capitol Square Foundation Chairman Charles Moses.

The award's selection criteria rely on whether the nominee lived in Ohio for at least five years and whether the commemorated event the nominee participated in took place 25 years ago.

There have been 59 Great Ohioans recognized for this award for their essential contributions to history, ranging from politicians, astronauts, healthcare pioneers, writers, athletes, abolitionists and more. To learn about the other awardees, visit our website.

“The Ohio Statehouse is the right place to recognize Great Ohioans,” said CSRAB Executive Director Laura P. Battocletti, “Everyone is welcome to enjoy paintings by Howard Chandler Christy in the Rotunda, and to learn about Representative Bingham in the museum exhibits. It was an honor to meet Gene Kranz, truly a pioneer in space exploration, when we unveiled the new painting, ‘Ohioans in Space.’”

Great Ohioans Exhibit
The Ohio Statehouse Museum exhibit allows visitors better to understand the recipients of the Great Ohioan Award and discover how they affected local, national, and world history. The exhibit uses videos, photos, facts and web-based technology to explore the life and legacy of each Great Ohioan. The Ohio Statehouse Museum is open every day of the week except on state holidays.


State Room at the Ohio Statehouse
(COLUMBUS, OH) — Members of the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) will meet Thursday, February 15, 2024 at the Ohio Statehouse in downtown Columbus. The business meeting will be held in the State Room (room #108) and will begin at 10:00 a.m. The meeting is open to the public. The meeting agenda is available upon request.

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Programs for Black History Month
(Columbus, OH) - The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) will celebrate Black History Month with four 60-minute programs. These programs will be presented every Tuesday, starting on February 6 and ending on February 27, in the Statehouse Atrium at noon. Melvin Barnes with Ohio Humanities will introduce the documentary The Lincoln School Story, Columbus Metropolitan Library will talk about the Underground Railroad, Executive Director of the Lincoln Theater Suzan Bradford will speak, and magician, storyteller and educator Rory Rennick will present The Henry “Box” Brown Show.

All events are free and open to the public. Reservations are not required, but large groups and schools may save their seats by calling 614-728-3726.

Scheduled noon presentations include:

Feb. 6- The Lincoln School Story.
Ohio Humanities will show the new 20-minute documentary, The Lincoln School Story. The documentary follows a group of mothers and their children, the Lincoln School Marchers, in Southwest Ohio. They heroically fought for school desegregation for over two years to continue the fight for equality in one of the longest-sustained actions of the Civil Rights movement.

Feb. 13- The Underground Railroad.
The Columbus Metropolitan Library will talk about Ohioans’ role in this brave fight for freedom and teach participants how to find homes on the Underground Railroad route.

Feb. 20- The Lincoln Theater.
Suzan Bradford will speak on the history and restoration of the Lincoln Theater in Columbus. As part of this presentation, she will also bring a singer for a short performance.

Feb. 27 – The Henry Box Brown Show.
Rory Rennick will present the motivational and informative “The Henry Box Brown Show.” This entertaining show brings to life the experience of Professor Henry “Box” Brown, an escaped slave-turned-magician. The program will include a Q&A segment and incredible feats of prestidigitation!

Each program will be live-streamed and recorded by

On Tuesdays in February, the Capitol Café will offer a discount for lunches. Visit the Café on the ground floor of the Ohio Statehouse for more details.


Artist Bill Hinsch in the Rotunda
UPDATE: See the large-scale final painting here.

Watch some of the recorded Jan. 24 events on

(Columbus, Ohio) –The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board and Capitol Square Foundation will unveil the 9-foot by 12-foot painting, “Ohioans in Space” by artist Bill Hinsch at the Ohio Statehouse on Wednesday, January 24 at 8:30 p.m. in the Rotunda. The painting features John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, Jim Lovell, Judith Resnik and Gene Kranz, and recognizes the accomplishments of Ohioans in space travel and exploration. Names of the 25 astronauts born in Ohio and others will be listed on a permanent plaque near the painting.

On January 24, the celebrations include a student program, panel discussions, poster signing, a ticketed dinner and the unveiling. Events begin at 11:00 a.m. in the Atrium, where there will be student programs in partnership with COSI and other Ohio science centers from all over Ohio. Ohio astronauts will also be in attendance, participating in experiments and meeting the students.

Two panel discussions are open to the public in the Senate Finance Room. At 2:00 p.m., a discussion about Aviation and Aerospace will be moderated by Dr. Frederic Bertley, President & CEO of COSI. The panel includes former astronauts Michael Good, Carl Walz and Don Thomas, and also Representative Adam Holmes; Dr. John Horack, Neil Armstrong Chair at the John Glenn College, The Ohio State University; Amanda Wright Lane, relative of the Wright brothers; and Casey Swails, NASA Deputy Associate Administrator.

A panel discussion about Art and its Lasting Impact on Ohio will be moderated by Nannette Maciejunes, Former Executive Director, Columbus Museum of Art at 3:30 p.m. The public will hear from the artist of “Ohioans in Space,” Bill Hinsch, as well as Dayna Jalkanen, Deputy Director of Museum and Education, Ohio Statehouse; Rebekah Beaulieu, President CEO, Taft Museum of Art; Dr. Hyacinth Paul, Artist in Residence, Trotwood Schools, Dayton; and Jim Keny, Keny Galleries, Columbus.

All the events will be livestreamed by The Ohio Channel.

The Statehouse Museum Shop will have unique merchandise including patches, challenge coins, lapel pins, COSI activity kits, t-shirts, and books on space. Artist Bill Hinsch will be available from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. to sign prints of the painting.

For those interested in attending the dinner and receptions at 5:30 p.m., tickets are available on the Capitol Square Foundation website. Proceeds will fund the painting and future art projects at the Ohio Statehouse. There will be remarks from Governor DeWine; Casey Swails, NASA Deputy Associate Administrator; and family members of Ohio astronauts. Nonticketed members of the press will have seats available to observe the proceedings.

The painting will be unveiled in the Ohio Statehouse Rotunda at 8:30 p.m. “Ohioans in Space” is the first commissioned large-scale painting to be installed permanently in the Ohio Statehouse in 66 years.

Artist Biography: Bill Hinsch is a lifelong artist from Hicksville, Ohio. Throughout his illustrious career, Bill also pursued his passion for portrait painting. He has created numerous works of art that hang in the Air Force Museum in Dayton and the Pentagon, depicting aviation heroes of the United States through the US Air Force Art program. Bill's dedication to his craft remains strong, and he paints daily in his studio in Perrysburg. In addition to his portrait work, he continues to create Learning Maps, where he has worked with some of the world's largest and most prestigious corporations to illustrate their strategies in a compelling, easy-to-understand format.

Reporters who are interested in interviewing the artist or other participants may contact Charles Moses, President, Capitol Square Foundation.
Charles Moses
Capitol Square Foundation
614-221-5825 ¦ ¦
cell phone 614-832-5823

Laura Battocletti
Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board
614-752-9777 ¦ ¦

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