Ellie Thibodeau, 7, of Delaware, explores the new kiosk at the corner of South Main and East Crawford streets in downtown Findlay. Maintained by Visit Findlay, the touch-screen machine lists downtown shops, eateries, landmarks, hotels and more. (Photo by Randy Roberts)

By BRENNA GRITEMAN

LIFE EDITOR

A new kiosk at the corner of South Main and Crawford streets is helping to ensure that visitors and locals alike never have to wonder what’s going on in downtown Findlay.

The 6-foot-tall digital kiosk is maintained by Visit Findlay and allows users to browse downtown eateries, shops, hotels, landmarks, galleries and more. Visit Findlay’s calendar of events is accessible from the kiosk, and another screen gives the weather forecast.

Danielle Wilkin, community relations and development manager with Visit Findlay, says the touch-screen kiosk was inspired by a similar machine in Cincinnati. The kiosk was privately funded but is maintained by Visit Findlay, she says.

Downtown locations are divvied up into categories, with separate pages for each individual business. Each listing includes a map and a scannable QR code, along with a short writeup about the establishment. An “explore” tab serves as a “catch-all” for things like the Hancock Historical Museum, the Jones Building, Marathon Center for the Performing Arts and Latham Courtyard, among others.

In the future, Wilkin says, programmers can add menus and discount offers that can be texted to the user.

“It’s kind of driven toward people that are visiting our community, are walking around downtown and don’t quite know what they’re looking for,” Wilkin says.

The kiosk, however, can also keep locals who don’t necessarily make it downtown regularly up to date on new businesses or events taking place.

“We encourage people to go see it and use it,” she says. “There’s people that have lived here their whole lives and don’t know everything that’s happening downtown.”

The kiosk was installed about a week ago and went live in the past couple days. The downtown Findlay logo will be added to the machine in the coming weeks.

Griteman: 419-427-8477

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Twitter: @BrennaGriteman

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