Axios Columbus

Picture of the Columbus skyline.

👏 It's finally Friday!

☁️ Today's weather: Increasing clouds with a high near 38°. Expect rain over the weekend.

🎵 Sounds like: "Friday I'm in Love" by The Cure.

Today's newsletter is 888 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Your pickup truck

Data: Data: S&P Global Mobility; Chart: Axios Visuals
Data: Data: S&P Global Mobility; Chart: Axios Visuals

Three of Columbus' top five best-selling vehicles are pickup trucks — yet pedestrian and road safety advocates say today's massive trucks are a hazard.

  • In a new Visuals special project, Axios' Will Chase, Jared Whalen and Joann Muller looked back over the past 50 years of pickup trucks to examine the societal and lifestyle changes behind their ever-increasing size.

Driving the news: In the 1980s, about half of pickup trucks were categorized as small or midsize. But by the 2010s, small pickups had nearly vanished as Americans increasingly bought into the big truck lifestyle.

  • As pickups transitioned from workhorses to lifestyle vehicles, their design shifted accordingly: Cabs expanded to accommodate more passengers, while beds shrank.

One result of supersized trucks: greater risks to pedestrians and other drivers.

  • Drivers of today’s trucks sit much higher, creating blind spots where small children or wheelchair users are hidden from view.
  • Pickups’ weight increased by 32% between 1990 and 2021, meaning they strike pedestrians with more force.
  • And the tall front of a truck strikes pedestrians in the torso or head, whereas the lower hoods of cars typically strike pedestrians in the legs.

Worthy of your time: The full Axios Visuals project

Bonus: Corvettes in Columbus

A blue Corvette E-ray driving over the Main Street Bridge at night in a heavily edited photo

A 2024 Corvette E-Ray 3LZ coupe driving over a bridge into "a city." Photo: Courtesy of the Chevrolet Pressroom

While a truck was Chevrolet's top-selling vehicle locally last year, we can't help but think that the car company's fancy new hybrid Corvette looks right at home here.

Driving the news: A perceptive Reddit user recently pointed out that Columbus is featured prominently in Chevrolet's marketing photos for the new Corvette E-Ray.

  • Sure, they're heavily edited and the captions just call the backdrop "a city," but we'd recognize that bridge and skyline anywhere.

🦌 Our take: Chevy should've taken a few more minutes to edit in a deer statue, too.

2. ❄️ Your blizzard of '78 memories

A father and son posing for a photo, with dad wearing a shirt reading, "I survived the Blizzard of '78."

Reader Kyle and his father, who "survived the Blizzard of '78." Photo: Courtesy of Kyle H.

It's been 45 years since Ohio suffered its worst blizzard in history. The series of deadly storms brought extremely heavy winds, frigid temperatures and record-high snow drifts.

  • Thank you to our readers who shared their memories of the Great Blizzard of 1978:

Kyle H.: My dad LOVES to tell the story of how my grandfather made him go into work despite the blizzard. It's brought up at every family reunion.

  • He worked at a grocery store and he ended up staying there for three days by himself until the roads were clear enough to get home.
  • He owns a "I survived the Blizzard of '78" T-shirt.

Jennifer J.: I was a sophomore in high school in 1978. I had three brothers who all had paper routes (for the Columbus Dispatch, the Citizen-Journal and the weekly Northland News).

  • My parents taught us an amazing work ethic, and as a family of nine, we got those papers out.
  • I remember walking through drifts that were over my waist!

Jamie C.: I was 1 the year of the blizzard. My mother and I weathered the storm in our home without power at the top of a very large hill in Muskingum County.

  • I was sick with a fever and cough and needed a doctor. Multiple family members and friends tried without success to scale the hill in all manner of vehicles.
  • My health condition got worse and finally the Ohio National Guard were deployed to our home for a rescue. I was taken to a local hospital where I was treated for pneumonia. My mom is pretty convinced that the Guard saved my life.
  • As a member of Ohio's COVID-19 pandemic response team, I witnessed our Guard saving many more lives (in ways big and small). I hope that 45 years from now, Ohioans look back and remember that.

Go deeper for more memories

3. Nutshells: Walnut do you know?

Illustration of a buckeye nut walking.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🗳 Ohio's new law requiring photo ID to vote is stricter than what most other states ask of voters. (Dispatch)

The jury in a federal lawsuit has found that Bryan Mason, the Columbus police officer who shot and killed 13-year-old Tyre King in 2016, did not violate Tyre's civil rights. (AP)

✈️ The 94th Aero Squadron Restaurant, a "quirky and historic eatery" inside a farmhouse near the airport, is closing in June after 40 years in business. (614 Magazine)

🏗 Developers are proposing an 18-story tower with retail and luxury apartments where the Main Bar once stood. (Columbus Business First)

🤔 Questions still surround the sudden resignation of OSU president Kristina M. Johnson, who leaves campus in May. (Columbus Monthly)

4. What to do this weekend

Illustration of a cherry pie with "weekend" cut out of the crust.

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

🍽️ Make last-minute reservations for 614 Restaurant Week, with proceeds benefiting the Children's Hunger Alliance.

⛸️ Put on your Mickey ears and watch "Let's Celebrate," a magical Disney on Ice show.

  • 11am and 7pm today; 11am, 3pm and 7pm Saturday; 11am and 3pm Sunday at Nationwide Arena. $15-100. Kids under 2 free!

🎭 See the local production of "Slave Play," a provocative commentary on race, gender and sexuality in modern America.

  • 7pm tonight and Saturday; 2pm Sunday at the Short North Stage, through Feb. 19. $46-56.

More events

Seeking employment?

🎾 The ball is in your court. Check out these opportunities.

  1. Sr Director Visual Merchandise and Store Planning at Micro Center.
  2. Product Marketing Director, GovCon ERP at Unanet.
  3. Director, (CSM) Solutions and Development at Cogeco.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a job.

5. Photo to go: ThisWeek's last issues

A newspaper front page for the ThisWeek Dublin Villager dated January 26.

From yesterday's edition of the ThisWeek Dublin Villager.

The final edition of ThisWeek Dublin Villager, one of more than a dozen suburban newspapers shuttered by Gannett this month, was published yesterday.

State of play: Gannett previously told us that the closures are meant to focus resources on its flagship newspaper in the region, the Columbus Dispatch.

This newsletter was edited by Everett Cook and copy edited by Keely Bastow and David Chiu.

Our picks:

😬 Tyler is fascinated with (and a bit horrified by) this story detailing a millionaire’s efforts to reverse the aging process.

🚙 Alissa is glad to see the Honda CR-V she recently ordered is a fan favorite.