Becoming a Cincinnatian!

“I’ve finally become a Cincinnatian!!! Wait, is that even a word?!

My husband was born and raised in this wonderful riverfront city, but I am a transplant. I am happily transplanted.

If you had told me in 2007, (the one and only time I drove on the highway passing through downtown on our way to Indianapolis), that I would be in love with this city, wanting to raise a family in this city, and to never live anywhere else but this city, I would have laughed at you.

My impression then, as I passed through, was of a dreary, very concrete city. This was the time before the “Tiara Building”, otherwise known by its proper name of the Great American Tower at Queen City Square, which didn’t appear on our skyline until 2011. I’m sure it wasn’t as awful as I remember thinking it was! However, when I came to spend a weekend in the Spring of 2012, I was overwhelmed and amazed.

When I think of things that first made me fall in love with this city, I think back on:

  • Huge, ginormous, rubber duckies on the tops of buildings
  • Colorful statues of pigs everywhere {Scroll to the end to see a Fun Family Activity!}
  • The Kroger Marketplace
  • The Tiara Building
  • Skyline vs. Gold Star Chili
  • Washington Park
  • Bridges


The first thing I did in Cincinnati was go to a Kroger Marketplace (well, it was across the river in Newport, but close enough!). I had never seen a Kroger like that anywhere – guess it pays to go to one in the city where the grocery giant is based. Then, we walked all through downtown, through the Banks, across the bridge to Newport and back… We explored Fountain Square and Washington Park, where our daughter danced in the water of the sprayground with Music Hall as the backdrop. We made a game of finding every pig we could and taking a picture of it and then finding all the ducks on top of buildings. I wanted to stay forever.  

washington park sprayground 2

I find great amusement in my husband relaying tales of Cincinnati days gone by – when there was pigeon poop all over Fountain Square, a green fountain, and stairs that led to nowhere; when there was no Tiara crowning the Queen City and when Washington Park was something to avoid rather than to celebrate.

We are so fortunate to have a city as gorgeous and full of life and art as we do at this point in history.

It took another year, until the Spring of 2013, before I came back again. This time, I tried the chili. I was initially Gold Star all the way, but now I’m kind of a Skyline girl. I couldn’t get enough of Cincinnati that time, and by October of that year, we were proud Cincinnati residents. And, now that Peyton (Manning) has retired, I am 100% committed to our Bengals as well.


I’ve learned a lot of interesting history about this city, and I’m still learning all the time. For instance, I found out that all the pig statues are because Cincinnati was once called Porkopolis and was a huge center for the pork industry. I’ve learned that the Tiara Building isn’t its technial name. I have learned that the sunglass-wearing rubber duckies are actually to promote the annual Rubber Duck Regatta where hundreds of thousands of little rubber ducks “race” to support the Freestore Food Bank (provides food to those in need).

And, most importantly, I’ve learned that “Cincinnatian” really is a word.

There is just so much to be proud of, being a part of this city that is now named after Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus (a model of civic virute). May we continue to keep this city as one we will be proud to call home for generations to come!


As previously promised, here is your fun, family activity! I am a local children’s book author and illustrator, so I thought it would be exciting to sketch out the four versions of our Cincinnati pig statues for all of you to download and print out! All of the pigs around our city represent whatever business or organization designed and painted them.  

What would your own family pig say about you?


Sit down with your family and design your own pig to represent your unique family! Then, head over to our Facebook page or tag us on Instagram with the #CMBfamilypigs and show us what your family’s pig looks like! I’ll be doing mine with my husband and kiddo soon as well! Can’t wait to see what makes all of us Cincinnatians so amazing and diverse!  Happy coloring!

Click to Download & Print:

  1. Pig Sitting with No Wings
  2. Pig Sitting with Wings
  3. Pig Standing with No Wings
  4. Pig Standing with Wings

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