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Mason, Greater Cincinnati: Alex Eichler


Phoenician Taverna

Mason Community Center

Kings Island

Alex Eichler came to Cincinnati a few years ago after graduating college. She lived in South Carolina most of her life and studied arts administration at the College of Charleston. She now works at the Cincinnati Art Museum as the Corporate & Foundations Manager and lives in Mason.
The Great Outdoors
The Mason Community Center has a great gym that was recently renovated with excellent facilities, an outdoor pool, a waterslide, a climbing wall, a variety of classes, and a running club. "There are a ton of runners in Mason," Alex says. "I always see people riding bikes and running on sidewalk trails." She says that there are lots of parks, green spaces, and places to take your dogs or kids, and that it is a very family-friendly city that is perfect for young families.
Pine Hill Lakes Park is connected to all of the school campuses – the high school, junior high, and elementary school, which are all on same campus. Pine Hill is a huge park with "fat, overfed ducks." It hosts geocaching, an outdoor treasure hunting game that uses GPS, and Boy Scout and Girl Scout camps.
Mason is also home to Kings Island Amusement Park and the Lindner Family Tennis Center, one of the largest tennis stadiums in the world and home of the Western & Southern Open. Mason is also a certified Tree City USA.
Dining & Drinking
"There's a diverse ethnic population in Mason," says Alex. "It has become a haven for different kinds of ethnic foods for foodies."
Some of her favorites include Sichuan Bistro, for Chinese food, and Straits of Malacca, a Malaysian restaurant. "The food is amazing and you can't get it anywhere else."
The Phoenician Taverna is a pan-Mediterranean restaurant with great pitas. There are also Indian restaurants and grocers and halal grocers (nearby Westchester is home to the largest Islamic center in the area). "It's a very diverse area. Mason is definitely a paradise for ethnic foods." The area is home to businesses like Proctor & Gamble, Fujitek, and the Children's Hospital, which draw international employees that foster the area's diversity.
Cincinnati is German city, so it has a lot of that heritage as well. There are also Japanese restaurants and Italian restaurants. Alex says Pitrelli's is a nice place for date night.
Tucker's Whippy Dip is a Mason icon, a little shack serving soft serve ice cream that is a family tradition after school, after games, and all summer long. She jokes that people coming home to visit family always make this a top priority to visit. Alex says that there is also "every kind of chain restaurant you could want."
Arts & Culture
The Mason Heritage Festival is a fun time for people to come together with concerts held in the park. The Cincinnati Symphony will also play in Mason on occasion.
The Mason Arts Festival, which has changed its name to the Fall Fair, brings in artists and crafts people from all over Cincinnati to Mason for an art fair/carnival/festival featuring food, local talent, and a variety of art items including hand-made jewelry to buy.
St. Susanna is the biggest Catholic Church in Mason, and every year holds the St. Susanna Festival, a "quintessential church festival with bingo " food, and beer.

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