The Indiana Insider Blog

Whimsy in Winter: Two free art displays in Columbus

Columbus, Indiana is known for its world-class art and architecture. But that doesn’t mean amateurs can’t get in on the action. In February, two very fun art installations go on display, all of which are created by local residents and groups.

Tree Cozies decorate downtown Columbus trees

Now through March 26 in downtown Columbus, you’ll find all kinds of creative knitwear wrapped around the trees. Called Tree Cozies, they keep the downtown trees “warm” throughout February and March and help to brighten the area during the grey winter. You’ll find the cozies on Washington Street (the main road that runs through town) from Fifth Street south to Third Street.

As a knitter myself, I’m always amazed by the hardwork and creativity that goes into the cozies each year. This year, it’s particularly impressive because many of the cozies were made by area school kids. Cottage Knits, a yarn and knit shop in Columbus, paired the kids with more experienced knitters who helped them along the way.

A bridge made from donated canned goods during the 2010 Canstruction

February also marks the month when Canstruction fills the halls of FairOaks Mall, also in Columbus. Teams of designers, engineers, students and other community-minded individual will create amazing works of art with donated canned goods. Everything from the Taj Mahal to a Cummins engine have been recreated in past years. The food is then donated to area shelters and food banks. The structures will be built on February 20 and will be open to the public during normal mall hours through February 27. FairOaks Mall is located at 25th and Central.

If you need a touchy of whimsy to brighten your winter, come to Columbus and take in these unique creations. Both displays are free of charge.

Photos courtesy of the Columbus Area Arts Council.

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Written by : Nicole is a stay-at-home mom and blogger living in Columbus, Indiana. She blogs about adventures at home and away with her husband and 2-year-old son at She grew up in Plainfield, Indiana and graduated from Butler University in 2002. She grew up in Plainfield, Indiana and graduated from Butler University in 2002. She spent seven years living and working in downtown Indianapolis following college. Nicole is always looking for fun, kid-friendly outing ideas. You can contact her via email or find her on Twitter at @arrowssentforth. Nicole receives compensation from the Indiana Office of Tourism Development for blogging. For more information, see our FTC Disclosure page.