About 200 years ago, where the City of Kent stands today, there were two villages known as Carthage and Franklin Mills, which were merged and renamed Kent, in 1864, to honor Marvin Kent, who played a major role in the village's development, by bringing a railroad through town, Kent being incorporated as a village, in 1867.
Although Kent started as a small village, today, it is the largest city in Portage County and offers visitors appealing attractions, among the most popular ones also being:
The West Main Historic District, also known as Kent Industrial District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, since 1974, covering about 43 acres of Kent's downtown area, boasting with historical buildings and structures that reveal the development of Kent from the 1800s until today.
Kent State's May 4 Memorial, also called May 4 massacre or Kent State massacre, which was rose in honor of the students who tragically died, being shot by members of the Ohio National Guard on Monday, May 4, 1970. Some of the students, who were shot, had been protesting, at that time, against the American invasion of Cambodia, which President Richard Nixon announced in a television address on April 30. The memorial invites visitors to `Inquire, Learn, Reflect`.
Every February, Kent State holds the Annual Black Squirrel Festival, which is a fun celebration that consists of small concerts, vendors and activities for the entire family, held in order to show the fact that the Kent residents are proud of their black squirrel. The adorable small animals have become a city feature and their overall rarity caused many other towns, cities, colleges, and universities, along with Kent, to take special pride in their populations of black squirrels, including Middletown, Connecticut, Marysville, Kansas, Westfield, Massachusetts, Council Bluffs, Iowa and Charleston, West Virginia.
Among the top places to shop, in and near Kent, OH, there are:
- Brimfield Plaza: 4100 Ohio 43, Kent, OH
- Aurora Farms Premium Outlets: 549 South Chillicothe Road, Aurora, OH.
- Chapel Hill Mall: 2000 Brittain Road, Akron, OH.
- Streetsboro Crossing: 1280 Ohio 303, Streetsboro, OH.
- Hartville MarketPlace: 1289 Edison Street Northwest, Hartville, OH.
- Banana Republic Outlet: 549 South Chillicothe Road, Aurora, OH.
- State Road Shopping Center: 2695 State Road, Cuyahoga Falls, OH.
- The Weekend Mall: 1886 Buchholzer Boulevard, Akron, OH.