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800 Martinsburg Road
Mount Vernon, OH 43050

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May 2023
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Just down the road from MVNU’s main campus is historical downtown Mount Vernon, where you’ll find a number of local restaurants and ice cream shops, along with quaint artisan shops and boutiques. Shop locally and be part of this thriving community.

  • Happy Bean: Whether you’re in the mood for a cold brew or a hot pour over, Happy Bean brews hope in Knox County, empowering all community members to see the potential of their life and families.
  • R & M’s Southside Diner: A retro, breakfast-all-day diner with a pie list a mile long and dozens of throwback candies for sale.
  • Whit’s Frozen Custard: An ice-cream lover’s paradise, Whit’s frozen custard is made fresh daily.
  • Dave’s Cosmic Subs: Offbeat counter-serve chain offering creative sandwiches & a classic-rock atmosphere.
  • The Alcove Restaurant & Lounge: The diverse menu of Italian favorites, delicious salads, and American cuisine offers something for everyone.
  • Mazza's Italian Restaurant: Established in 1939, the ever-popular restaurant is back with a homemade spin on traditional Italian classics, original family recipes, and Mazza's salad!
  • Round Hill Dairy: "There is a difference in ice cream."
  • Ariel-Foundation Park: Located in Mount Vernon, Ohio, the park is a stunning 250-acre example of adaptive reuse, created on the former site of a glass-making factory. It offers architectural ruins, lakes, observation tower, walking trails, steel sculptures, a museum, and connections to both the Kokosing Gap Trail and the Heart of Ohio Trail.
  • Honey Run Falls: A 2+ acre property that includes a stunning, 25-foot high waterfall. This park, named for the stream, Honey Run, that cascades over the waterfall, is open to the public 365 days a year.

MVNU is just 45 minutes from Forbes’ #1 City of Opportunity: Columbus, Ohio. Students love heading down to the city on the weekends for concerts, events, shopping, and more.

Student favorites:

  • Easton Town Center: With more than 25 million visitors per year, Easton is the Midwest’s premier shopping, dining, and entertainment destination featuring nearly 300 best-in-class retailers alongside Columbus’ most exciting dining options, Ohio’s largest movie theatre, a world-class comedy club, and pedestrian-friendly open-air town squares, fountains, and parks.
  • Mission Coffee: Mission is one of the highest-rated coffee shops in Ohio — and one of its co-owners is an MVNU alumnus!
  • Columbus Zoo and Aquarium: The Columbus Zoo is known for amazing exhibits and its annual winter Wildlights at the Zoo event, where you can experience displays of millions of LED lights among hundreds of wild animals.
  • Polaris Fashion Place: Polaris Fashion Place is a premier shopping destination in Columbus, Ohio, that offers over 150 retailers and dozens of restaurants. 
  • COSI: Columbus, Ohio's dynamic Center of Science and Industry, inspires the scientists, dreamers, and innovators of tomorrow.
  • Franklin Park Conservatory: This beautiful conservatory offers enriching and memorable experiences inspired by art, culture, and the botanical world.


Owned and operated by MVNU alumni and students, Happy Bean is the premier coffee shop in Mount Vernon, and it's conveniently housed downtown in MVNU's Hunter Hall. Whether you’re in the mood for a cold brew or a hot pourover, Happy Bean brews hope in Knox County, empowering all community members to see the potential of their life and families.