Port Gone Wild


Port Gone Wild

In this week’s issue:
* Cool Cleveland Mystery Tour on 6/1 is sold out
* Cool Cleveland Reads Cleveland in Prose and Poetry
* Signs of Life on Planet Cleveland Choose Wisely, Grasshopper by David Budin
* Cool Cleveland Sounds Going to Louisiana from Me and Willy
* Cool Cleveland Breaking News Ohio Ballet announces Summer Festival
* Cool Cleveland Comment Cleveland Kids Hit the Bigtime by David Budin
* Cool Cleveland Kids podcast click here, CC podcast click here, CC Blog click here

It all comes down to how clued in you are. If you’re good friends with the Port Authority, they can make you a very nice deal, saving the Cavs 3/4 of a million bucks of our tax dollars, and using eminent domain suits to force Flats property owners to accept low bids for their properties. Read all about it, and then let us know how you feel, since you’re probably not as well connected as LBJ.

So instead, we try to keep you as clued in as possible, with a whole slew of news, events and commentary for the coming week. Since the first-ever Cool Cleveland Mystery Tour on 6/1 is already sold-out, you may want to check out the Sparx Brain Gain event, or check the intriguing Triplicity Project at CSU, or the recommended session on the Cuyahoga Valley Initiative in the Flats. And that’s just Thursday. Read about Ohio Ballet’s resurrected summer season, reviews of the Orchestra, CYO & Verb Ballets, plus our always-interesting letters. And if you figure out that Port thing, drop us a line. –Thomas Mulready

Mystery Tour Sold Out
Apparently, you didn’t click fast enough

The CC Mystery Tour is shoving off on Thu 6/1 after work with a sold-out guest list. We’re not saying where, since it’s a Mystery Tour (hence the name), but check back next week when we publish the photos and let all our Cool Cleveland readers know where the tour happened. In the meantime, we’d love to hear your suggestions for cool neighborhoods to feature on our next Mystery Tour. Warm up your clicking fingers now. Send your thoughts here: Letters@CoolCleveland.com


  • Someone please explain this to me The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority, a non-elected government entity unto itself, has used it’s ability to float bonds and guarantee loans to support a wide range of projects, and now is helping the Cavs pay for their new training facility in Independence, saving the b-ball team $750K, money that would normally to citizens: the state ($550K), the County ($100K) and the RTA ($100K). See story here. They are also using their powers of eminent domain, suing property owners in the Flats who haven’t accepted developer Scott Wolstein’s low offers. See stories here and here. How did the non-elected Port board get these powers, who decides who benefits, and where does their influence stop? Letters@CoolCleveland.com.
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  • Stark develops Warehouse District At least developer Robert Stark, who built Crocker Park, knows enough to buy his land first on the open market, without blight designation or eminent domain threats. He’s assembled 3 parking lots along Superior Avenue at East 3rd for a new large-scale mixed-use project. But don’t worry, Port Authority chair John Carney was in Vegas with Stark pitching the plan to financiers, so the other shoe should drop soon. See story here. Your thoughts? Letters@CoolCleveland.com
  • Got a fantastic new web site? Who cares? Now that you’ve spent a bundle and launched the perfect web presence, you’ve got to get people over to see your costly investment. What’s your strategy? Remember, you can’t click on print ads, radio or television. But tens of thousands of people use a mouse to read Cool Cleveland, and your site is just a click away. Contact TL Champion and let’s talk about how we can help raise awareness of your cool web site. TL@CoolCleveland.com.
  • That’s why they call them ‘red-light cameras’ For once listening to citizens’ concerns, the Ohio legislature is considering a bill to prevent cities like Cleveland from using the recently installed ‘red-light’ cameras’ to ticket speeders. One legislator called the cameras, “one monstrous speed trap.” See story here, and see CC letters below and here, and Red light cameras go too far here. How do you feel? Letters@CoolCleveland.com.
  • AIDS turns 25 Did you know that on June 5, 1981 the Centers for Disease Control issued the first published report on what would become known as the AIDS virus? Twenty-five years later there has been progress leading to hope, but more work needs to be done. All of us can make a difference. Want to take a few more steps toward knocking out HIV/AIDS in Northeast Ohio? Then do your part to raise awareness and help the local agencies that are promoting HIV/AIDS prevention. You can support several of those agencies by participating in the Dr. John T. Carey Memorial AIDS Walk on Sat 10/6. Visit http://www.cleveland.com/AIDSwalk to learn more. How is our region doing with promoting awareness and prevention? Send your ideas to Letters@CoolCleveland.com.

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Go Ape Around Town! Climb, knuckle walk and “pant hoot” your way into the amazing world of chimpanzees starting Sat 6/3 through Sun 9/3 at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History’s exhibit celebrating the life and work of renowned chimp researcher Jane Goodall. The exhibition “Discovering Chimpanzees: The Remarkable World of Jane Goodall” is the first stop on your Primate Passport. Purchase one (or several!) for other chimp extravaganzas around town including admission to the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and Rainforest, and the OMNIMAX movie “Jane Goodall’s Wild Chimpanzees” at the Great Lakes Science Center. For more info contact www.cmnh.org.
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  • Hi-tech bathhouse for Downtown Indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a workout gym, a eucalyptus vapor room, a nightclub, 30 hotel rooms, sauna, a giant jacuzzi, and a rooftop sandpit for nude bathing, all in a converted 50K sf Art-Deco style Greyhound bus garage at E. 26th & Hamilton in Cleveland’s rising Chinatown. Kudos to Clevo native developer Charles Fleck, who owns a chain of such mens-only bathhouses in 5 cities. See story here. Would you partake in the bathhouse? Letters@CoolCleveland.com
  • Hardcore/Rust/Mid-Atlantic merge Cleveland-based music companies, Hardcore Marketing, Inc., Mid-Atlantic Management and Rust Records have merged aspects of their respective companies to build two new entities: 24/7 Management, an Artist Development and Band Management firm and West 80 Records, an imprint of Rust/Sony BMG Records. The companies will merge office suites and will be housed in newly built offices on the 2nd floor of the 1300 Building on West 80th and Lake Road in late June. How exciting is that? Letters@CoolCleveland.com.
  • Cool Cleveland Kids Cleveland’s a family-friendly town. With all the stuff there is to do, 10-year-old Max Mulready wants to give you a hand. Listen to his podcast here even if you don’t have special software. If you’re a whiz kid, you can download it to your iPod or your computer and listen with your own kid. Check below to see the events tagged CC KIDS under Cool Cleveland This Week for our recommendations for a fantastic family week. Adding this link to your program that catches podcasts, will keep you up-to-date on the latest audio.
  • Becoming George becoming a hit Cool Cleveland’s very own Linda Eisenstein scores big with the new stage play Becoming George which premiered in Washington, D.C. Linda composed the score for this play which visits George Sand – a woman composer who took a man’s name to further her career – near the end of her life. Sands, a prolific writer, composer, feminist and rebel demanded equality for women and was a lover to Frederic Chopin, Alfred de Musset and Prosper Merimee. The play is filled with delicious tunes by Eisenstein and solid performances by its cast. Check out some of the reviews here and here. Send her your congrats here: Letters@CoolCleveland.com.
  • Cool Cleveland Podcast Cool things to do this week in Cleveland, at the click of a button. http://www.coolcleveland.com/files/audio/CoolCleveland06.02.06.mp3. Don’t forget, you can subscribe to this podcast by saving this link in your favorite program that catches podcasts.
  • Wow in the Warehouse District Green space attracts people. It’s a concept for sparking downtown urban re-development proven in Chicago, Portland, OR, and many points in between. To help Cleveland’s downtown renaissance, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is spearheading this event which will place 50+ hanging planters from light posts throughout the area. To learn more about the project visit http://www.WarehouseDistrict.org. What do you think about the project? Share your thoughts at Letters@CoolCleveland.com.

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Perry Farrell Opens CMJ Rock Hall Music Fest The 2nd Annual Music Fest kicks off Wed 6/14, with an opening-night, club-style party at the Rock Hall featuring DJs PERETZ (Perry Farrell), Prince Paul and Mick Boogie. The festival continues through Sun 6/18 with a full lineup of concerts featured each evening at Cleveland’s hottest venues, including House of Blues, Peabody’s, Beachland Ballroom, the Agora, the Grog Shop and Wilbert’s. Free back-to-back daytime concerts are scheduled at Festival Village in front of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum as well as the Goldmine Record Show, which is free to the public. All-inclusive badges are only $50 and are available through Ticketmaster. Visit www.cmj.com/musicfest for details.
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Emissions from the blogsphere Norm Roulet wants to know if you’re concerned about ozone action days. Scott Muscatello posts pictures of the Veterans Memorial Bridge – Subway Tour. Brian Thorton takes a Plain Dealer reporter to task for not asking the right questions about the new bathhouse in Cleveland. Anita Campbell podcasts an interview with COSE’s Steve Millard and Lou Licata. Lev Gonick explains what Net Neutrality means for Cleveland. Check the Cool Cleveland weblog here where Peter Chakerian touches on the Port Authority activity, a Stark Reality Part II, LGBTs, a Rusty Hardcore Merge, tosses his own SPAM under the microscope and a whole lotta other stuff. When you’re done add your own comments, questions and attitude. Letters@CoolCleveland.com.

Cool Cleveland This Week


Send your cool events to: Events@CoolCleveland.com

HOT PICK Regenerating the Cuyahoga Valley You are invited to attend a presentation and discussion of important progress in the Cuyahoga Valley Initiative (CVI), a large-scale vision to restore the economy, river, culture, and community of the Cuyahoga Valley, especially in the area of the ship channel, on Thu 6/1 at 4PM. The meeting will conclude Rocky Mountain Institute’s (RMI) work on CVI and describe the next steps to success as CVI begins to run on its own legs. The Watermark (Hausheer Building), Old River Road, 1250 Old River Road, The Flats. www.gcbl.org.

Event Tip of the Week We’re a fun-loving group at Cool Cleveland – but one of our least favorite games in Find the URL. Ya’ know, surfing endlessly for website information that may or may not exist on your event submission. We’re already sporting eyeglasses as thick as Coke bottles – so show your favorite, visually-challenged event listers a little love and include your URL with your event submission. Optometrist orders. Put the spotlight on your great event by sending it, with URL, to Events@CoolCleveland.com.

Triplicity The Triplicity Project is a creative presentation by G. M. Donley of urban spaces accompanied by transcripts of people’s impressions of those spaces. The works are triplets of images in black and white and visitors will have an opportunity to add their own impressions to the images. Attend the opening reception Thu 6/1 from 4-6PM. The show runs through 9/30. Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, Glickman-Miller Hall, 1717 Euclid Avenue. http://urban.csuohio.edu/forum/gallery/triplicity.htm.

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Is there a Doctor in the Neighborhood? Yes, there is! Because The Courtyards of Severance is so close to University Circle and Downtown, and offers carefree, maintenance-free living, tax abatement, five award-winning floor plans, designer-quality finishes, and endless entertainment, dining, shopping, and relaxation options, it’s easy to see why this neighborhood is preferred by University Circle doctors and everyone else! See for yourself what the buzz is all about. On Mayfield Road between Warrensville Center and South Taylor Roads in Cleveland Heights, The Courtyards of Severance is open Saturday through Wednesday, 1PM – 5PM, and by appointment. Visit www.TheCourtyardsOfSeverance.com for more information.
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Sparx & PD Brain Gain Event Celebrate the City on Thu 6/1 at 5:30PM when East 4th Street becomes party central. Check out the ultra-talented Sparx street performers and enjoy a “Taste of E. 4th Street” with affordably-priced samplings from your favorite East 4th Street eateries, including Pickwick & Frolic, Flannery’s, Lola, and House of Blues. Get your invitation at www.cleveland.com/youngprofessionals. East Fourth Street, Downtown Cleveland.

CC KIDS O.H. Perry POW WOW & Arts Festival Been to a good old-fashioned Pow-Wow lately? If not, you are well overdue. Join the students of O.H. Perry on Thu 6/1 at 6PM as they show off their festive costumes and what they’ve been learning about Native American culture during this event in collaboration with DancEvert. Enjoy tasty foods and beverages available during this exciting event. Oliver H. Perry Elementary, 18400 Schenley Avenue.

Fefu and Her Friends is an Obie award-winning play about eight women who join together to change the world in 1935. Adventurous, insightful, disturbing and fun, Fefu and Her Friends takes place in five different locations throughout CPT’s Gordon Square Theatre. Audience members travel through hallways, backstage rooms and alleyways as they follow the action. Preview the show on Thu 6/1 at 7:30PM. The show opens on Fri 6/2 at 7:30PM and runs through Sat 6/17. Audiences can share their responses, and learn more about the work of master Latino playwright, Maria Irene Fornes, during a post show discussion. Cleveland Public Theatre, Gordon Square Theatre, 6415 Detroit Avenue. www.cptonline.org.

Even in Your Underwear When Cool Cleveland readers are asked what their second favorite feature is – after the edgy content – most say they appreciate the intimacy of receiving it in their inbox. In fact, some admit they even read it in their underwear. Warning: We don’t suggest this if you receive Cool Cleveland at work. Contact Info@CoolCleveland.com for info about advertising.

Murray Hill Art Walk Little Italy celebrates the arts during the 27th Annual Murray Hill Art Walk on Fri 6/2 and Sat 6/3 from 12-10PM and Sun 6/4 from 12-6PM. Cleveland’s longest and most celebrated art walk opens its streets for a weekend filled with exquisite art, melodic music, and ambrosial appetizers. Live music will fill the streets as visitors enjoy special weekend events, fine art exhibitions and some of the best Italian food in the city. It’s more than an art walk, it’s a tradition. Little Italy. http://www.MurrayHillArtWalk.com.

Mosaics and Martinis Attend the opening reception for artist Todd V at Art in the Village @ 5700, the new gallery space in the main offices of the Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland (NHSGC), on Fri 6/2 from 5:30 – 8:30PM. The lifelong Northeast Ohio native is an energetic multi-tasker in life and in art. The prolific painter works on several canvases at once – each in a different style – and is the creator of iSmudge, an on-line art gallery that now features the work of more than 970 artists from around the world. The exhibit runs through Thu 7/6. Art in the Village @ 5700, 5700 Broadway, Slavic Village.

Wine Tasting and Live Auction What you get: Terminally cool wine to taste, to-die-for delectables to eat and hip beyond the fringe people to party with as you bid with abandon on unusual, coveted items at the auction like a voicemail message recorded for you by global screen/stage phenom Tom Hanks. What you wear: Hip, slinky attire. Penguin suits are unnecessary. How to get tickets: Call 687-0074. When to show up and where: Fri 6/2 from 6-9PM at The Mercury Lounge, 1392 West 6th Street. http://www.convergence-continuum.org/.

Benefit for Displaced New Orleans Musicians Though the images of devastation in the City of New Orleans are no longer a daily affair, victims of this disaster are still very much in need of our assistance. ActiveMuse.org is sponsoring an event to help many of the still displaced musicians from this great American city on Fri 6/2 at 7PM. Half-Cleveland (New Orleans); Michael Harvey and the Hurricane Revue; Damaged Pies (Pittsburgh); Constant Flux and more will perform during this event. Call 330-678-1857 or visit http://www.ActiveMuse.org to learn more. The Lime Spider, 207 South Main Street, Akron.

Bark & Bite Don’t miss out on all of the doggone fun surrounding this event featuring artists David Deming and Lee Heinen. First up – the opening reception on Fri 6/2 from 7-9PM. Next attend an artist’s dialogue on Wed 6/7. Then get yourself all scrubbed up and sparkling for a gala event on Sat 6/10 from 6:30 – 11PM. The evening includes a cocktail hour in the gallery, followed by dinner and dancing at the College’s Anthony M. Pilla Student Learning Center. Call 440-684-6075 for tickets or table reservations. No begging necessary. Ursuline College Florence O’Donnell Wasmer Gallery, 2550 Lander Road, Pepper Pike. www.ursuline.edu.

Metropolis & The Future of Food Enjoy a screening of the silent film Metropolis on Fri 6/2 at 7:30PM, accompanied by a live band performing the original score. Then return on Sat 6/3 at 3:30PM and 6PM for a screening of the award-winning documentary, Future of Food. There is no charge for either event, so save your moolah for the outrageously delicious coffees, appetizers and desserts at Talkie’s Film and Coffee Bar, 2521 Market Avenue, Ohio City. http://www.TalkiesCoffee.com.

A Mother’s Work Closing Get in on the closing reception for this stunning exhibit by several local women artists on Fri 6/2 at 8PM. Even if you’ve seen it before, it’s worth a second look. Top off the great art with live performances by T. Herman, Linda Herman, Joan of Art and young musician, Nicholas Deveney playing original songs on acoustic guitar and you’ve got a night to remember. Call 383-0230 to learn more. True Art, 410 East 156th Street, Collinwood.

WCLVnotes The San Francisco Symphony concerts return to WCLV 104.9 tomorrow night, Thu 6/1 at 9PM for a 26 week run. And speaking of orchestras, Saturday night’s Cleveland Orchestra concert is live at 8PM, with Franz conducting Mozart’s “Prague” Symphony and Debussy’s “La Mer.” Then on Sun 6/4 WCLV goes to the Cleveland Music School Settlement to report live on the school’s celebration of 50 years of exceptional early childhood education. Put Wed 6/14 on your calendar for WCLV’s “Celebrate Life” Blood Drive for the Red Cross at Le Centre in Westlake. Complete details of WCLV’s daily programming can be found on our website – www.wclv.com.. WCLV is a Cool Cleveland Partner.

Discovering Chimpanzees: The Remarkable World of Jane Goodall kicks off on Sat 6/3. The exhibit explores four decades of research by world-renowned chimpanzee researcher Jane Goodall. Explore the amazing world of chimpanzees, our primate relatives, through interactive exhibits and programs through Sun 9/3. Cleveland Museum of Natural History, 1 Wade Oval Drive, University Circle. www.cmnh.org.

Hoop It Up For Health Watch an exciting game of hoops; mingle with local celebrities and receive life-saving health screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose and diabetes. You can even win complimentary tix to some of the hottest venues in town. Best of all, it won’t cost you a cent for all this and more during the 3rd Annual Hoop it Up for Health Fair & Basketball Tournament on Sat 6/3 from 9AM to 3PM. Call 368-3909. Case Western Reserve University’s Veale Convocation Center, 2128 Adelbert Road.

Geology Walking Tour Join Dr. Joseph Hannibal on Sat 6/3 at 10AM as he discusses interesting rock formations and various types of stone used in many of the monuments at Lake View Cemetery. Call 421-2665 x3035 to reserve your spot on the tour. Lake View Cemetery, 12316 Euclid Avenue. www.LakeViewCemetery.com.

CC KIDS Familiar Faces Wanna know what’s really going on? Then check out this exhibit of art by children ages 5-17 on Sat 6/3 from 2-4PM. Discover a new perspective on familiar faces and places through an open mind and the eyes of a child. The exhibit of art by children ages 5-17 is inspired, uninhibited, and full of fun. Call 330-673-4970. North Water Street Gallery, 257 North Water Street, Kent. http://www.StandingRock.net.

Pop-O-Matic Help The Pop Shop Gallery and Studio, Cleveland’s most ultra-violet gallery, celebrate its first year anniversary on Sat 6/3 with festivities from 6-9PM, then an after party next door at Mullens from 9PM to 2AM. The work of twenty artists who have been a part of The Pop Shop’s success over the past year will share the spotlight during this event. The gallery will raffle off artwork and promises to have a few other cool tricks up its sleeve. Call 227-8440 or visit http://www.myspace.com/thepopshopgallery to learn more. The Pop Shop, 17020 Madison Avenue, Lakewood.

Writers & Their Friends is a literary gala celebrating the work of some of our region’s finest writers. Celebrities, actors and media personalities will bring the works of 25 featured artists to life with dramatic readings during the Sat 6/3 event from 6:30-10PM. Connect with local exhibitors, check out some of the latest literary offerings and promote your favorite writing or book discussion group. Then, if you are really good – you can hit The Mingle – the official after-party, which will be held at MOCA Cleveland. Call 421-0403 or visit www.pwlgc.com. The Bolton Theatre, Cleveland Play House, 8500 Euclid Avenue.

HOT PICK NAMI Benefit Show and Silent Auction This event features a silent art auction with art donated by Glenn Baskin, Dave Cintron, Dana L. DePew, Russ Jones, Bryon Miller, Ryan Weitzel and more, plus not-so-silent musical performances by The Dreadful Yawns, The New Lou Reeds and Harlem Airshaft. All donations will benefit NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) in the honor and memory of Benjamin Webber Anderson. The Sat 6/3 event kicks off at 7PM. Minimum donation for the event is just five bucks. Parish Hall Cleveland, 6205 Detroit Avenue. http://www.ExitStencilRecordings.

Harmonia at Night Town The group returns to Cleveland on Sat 6/3 at 9PM for an intimate performance of traditional folk music of eastern Europe, ranging from the Danube to the Carpathians. Performing on authentic folk instruments, and styled after turn of the century East-European Gypsy bands, their music is drawn from both the urban and rural traditions of Eastern-Europe. Call 795-0550 for reservations. Night Town, 12387 Cedar Road, Cleveland Heights. http://www.nighttowncleveland.com. http://www.HarmoniaBand.com.

Paint the Town Red during the American Heart Association’s annual black-tie and red dress soiree on Sat 6/3 beginning at 9PM. This exclusive networking social event gives young professionals, ages 21 to 35, an opportunity to connect with leaders in Cleveland’s thriving medical and corporate community over tasty hors d’oeuvres, smooth libations and the velvety tunes of The Conway Band. Call 619-5158 or email lynette.trentini@heart.org to RSVP. Black tie or “red ties” are required, red dresses are encouraged. InterContinental Hotel and MBNA Conference Center, 9801 Carnegie Avenue. www.AmericanHeart.org.

CC KIDS Race for the Place Celebrate National Cancer Survivors Day by participating in this event on Sun 6/4. This family event kicks off with a Cancer Survivors Day Ceremony at 9AM and a number of family events will be held throughout the morning. Race for the Place benefits The Gathering Place and Fund Services for Those Touched by Cancer. Join thousands of fellow Clevelanders for the annual 5K run/walk and one-mile walk. Register as a team or an individual at http://www.TouchedByCancer.org or by calling 595-9546. The race kicks off on the upper level parking deck between Nordstrom and Dillard’s at Beachwood Place, 26300 Cedar Road, Beachwood.

Tea & Tango Benefit You’ll enjoy a delicious lunch, a variety of teas, a silent auction full of wonderful items, and a demonstration by Dr. Tango (Dr. Jeannette Potts, a Cleveland Clinic urologist) at the latest Ladies Tea event on Sun 6/4 from 1-3PM. Start shopping for your show-stopping hat now – the “Best Hat Contest” is back for this event to benefit The Women’s Center of Greater Cleveland, an organization which provides opportunities for women to take greater control of their lives physically, emotionally and economically. Visit www.WomensEmpowermentBoard.com to learn more or reserve tickets. Cleveland Botanical Garden, 11030 East Boulevard.

Sit, Stay, Forward . . . We double dog dare you to forward your favorite e-zine to several friends that you think would enjoy it while supporting the online newsletter that was recently awarded the “Excellence in Journalism” award from the Society of Professional Journalists.

Fighting for the Civil Rights of Gays and Lesbians What’s happening in the courts? Quite a lot, with attacks on civil unions and partner benefits across the Mid-West. Camilla Taylor will be in town for a fund-raiser for the Lambda Legal Foundation on Sun 6/4 from 4-6PM, and will report on cases she’s working on in Ohio and neighboring states. To attend the Shaker Heights reception drop a line to eric.nilson@wachoviasec.com or call 574-7281 for the details.

Driving into the Future: The Innerbelt Project The Ohio Department of Transportation is planning for the rehabilitation and redesign of the 50-year-old Innerbelt between MetroHealth Center and “Dead Man’s Curve.” This change includes the Innerbelt Bridge, which carries I-71/I-90 traffic over the Cuyahoga River Valley. Gordon Proctor, director of the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT), will present the plans for the Innerbelt project and discuss issues concerning it Wed 6/7 at 12PM. Call 621-0082 or visit www.CityClub.org for more info or to make reservations. The City Club of Cleveland, 850 Euclid Avenue, 2nd Floor.

Send your cool events to: Events@CoolCleveland.com

Cool Cleveland Reads
Cleveland in Prose and Poetry
Edited by Bonnie Jacobsen
League Books (Poets & Writers League of Greater Cleveland)

Released at the very end of 2005, Cleveland in Prose and Poetry is one of those rare works that reveals itself layer by layer in some very intense ways – touching on the best and worst of times in Cleveland, along with our friendly, true-blue working town aesthetic.

Nearly 80 famous, nameless and notorious writers from two centuries grace this anthology. All of them know what Cleveland has been, is, and can be. As a result, this 155-page paperback comes across as smart, incisive and incredible in its scope and breadth of emotion.

Down in the mouth locals take note: to say Cleveland is in identity crisis after reading these works is both overreaching and ignorant. What’s more, to say that editor Bonnie Jacobson, a Poets’ & Writers’ League of Greater Cleveland member and Beachwood native, pulled together an editorial miracle is an understatement of epic proportions.

The book may have come together in four short months as a fund-raiser, but there are experiences here that span a myriad of lifetimes. Observances by Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Helen Keller and Langston Hughes will cut to the quick for many; a few pages in, this reviewer kept thinking, “Every citizen in Northeast Ohio needs this book.”

Matched with many of CLE’s modern-day wordsmiths – Les Roberts, Harvey Pekar, Charles Waddell Chesnutt, Dick Feagler and others — the elder’s writing styles are equally all over the road. Gritty to elegant. Hopeful to go-for-broke. Angry to sad, mournful and longing. You’ll find yourself rapt, inside and out, unable to put Prose and Poetry down.

Offering you quotes cannot even begin to do any of these authors justice. What I can tell you, is there’s a lot to absorb. And if you’re done reading in the same four months Jacobsen took to assemble it, you simply weren’t paying attention. There’s a lot to absorb. If you want to truly know more about where you live, my advice is to start here. It might jog some of your own Cleveland memories.

The Poets & Writers League of Greater Cleveland presents “Writers & Their Friends,” a literary gala celebrating the work of some of our region’s finest writing talent. Dramatic readings from local writers will take place this Saturday, June 3 from 6:30-10PM. Local exhibitors will be on hand with their literary wares; PWLGC might even have a few copies of Cleveland in Prose and Poetry for sale. Then, check out “The Mingle” – an official after-party, held at MOCA Cleveland – afterwards.

Check out the listing in this week’s issue, call 421-0403 or visit http://www.pwlgc.com for more info.

By Cool Cleveland contributor Peter Chakerian peterATcoolcleveland.com

Signs of Life on Planet Cleveland
Choose Wisely, Grasshopper
By David Budin

I went to see the movie The Promise at the Cedar Lee. It’s an incredibly beautifully filmed Chinese fairy tale about themes common to many Asian films – loyalty and betrayal, fate and destiny, and also the nature of true love – but at its heart is the theme of making choices that affect your life and other people’s lives forever. It made me think about how I wound up where I was. No, no; not in life – that would be way too deep for me – but how I wound up at that movie at that time. And as I was recounting my journey to that place, it made me think (and, you see – this is why you should only go to movies at the regular theaters) about how and why anyone chooses which movies or concerts or plays or any arts events to attend.

It started – well, who knows when it really started? – but let’s say it started on Friday, May 19, when I got in my car and turned on WCPN’s Around Noon show, just as Dee Perry began an interview with Cleveland theater legend Dorothy Silver, actor Charles Kartali and New Jersey playwright Judy Klass about Klass’s play Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One, which was going to get a staged reading at the Cleveland Play House as part of FusionFest ‘06. The play sounded interesting, but I had to turn off the radio and go into a meeting before I heard when it would be taking place…
Read Signs of Life on Planet Cleveland by David Budin here

Cool Cleveland Sounds
Going to Louisiana
Me and Willy
MW Music

Got a jones for that gritty sound from the Mississippi Delta, splashed with a bit of upbeat folk and bluegrass? Then it turns out this week’s Cool Cleveland Sounds is just the thing for you.

Cleveland-area singer/songwriter “Lonesome” Willy Earle does a fair amount of gigging about Northeast Ohio. Sometimes he does so with the Willy Earle Band, jogging through a variety of dirty old ditties by the Stones, Animals, Big Brother, etc. Other times you’ll find Earle by his, erm… well, by his lonesome, actually. When he’s solo, he takes on a bit of everything from Son House and Jimmy Rodgers, to Robert Johnson and Keb Mo’.

It’s when Earle joins singer/songwriter Pat Winfield to perform under the moniker Me and Willy that the sparks really fly. That’s when those ol’ devil blues get a healthy dose of Down From the Mountain and Carter Family thrown in for good measure. Winfield adds a lot of that rootsy, Americana flair with her rhythm guitars and washtub bass siding up to Earle’s own gritty guitarisms.

If you were into the O Brother Where Art Thou? soundtrack, you’ll undoubtedly be into this disc. The 12 tracks found on Going to Louisiana are just flat-out fun, from the dobro-harmonica laced “Rockin’ Blues” and stomp box sound of “Get Down Mama,” to a muddy water n’ crawdad jam called “Mudslide.” Everything sounds relaxed, well-versed and free-flowing; Earle and Winfield make their often-hard-to-capture sound seem effortless and easy.

And hey, any duo with back-up singers called the Red Hot Mamas in their corner has to be doing something right. Do right by your own ears and check these two out. You’ll love ’em.

Me and Willy host a jam at The Lake Shore Coffee House on the first and third Thursdays of each month, 22032 Lakeshore Blvd, Euclid. They perform this Thursday, June 1st from 7:30 to 9:30 pm. Call 289-CAFE (2233) or check out http://www.MeAndWilly.com for more information. And keep an eye out for them at the Ingenuity Arts and Technology Festival on Friday, July 14 day 2:00-3:30 pm. They’ll be plucking away on E. 5th Street.

From Cool Cleveland contributor Peter Chakerian peterATcoolcleveland.com

Wanna get reviewed? Send your band’s CD (less than 1 year old) to: Cool Cleveland, 14837 Detroit Avenue, #105, Lakewood, OH 44107

Hey Writers! Wanna write about Cleveland music? We’ve got a slew of recently-released CDs and DVDs by Cleveland-area musicians that could use your critical commentary for Cool Cleveland Sounds. If you’re interested, send us a note at Letters@CoolCleveland.com.

Cool Cleveland Breaking News
Ohio Ballet announces Summer Festival

After much uncertainty, Ohio Ballet’s Summer Festival is on, at least in Akron. The short version of the news is, FREE outdoor performance by the area’s last fully professional dance company with theater quality lighting, sound, and costumes. No reservations, no waiting, no standing in line. Just bring your folding chair or blanket and enjoy what are in all probability the final performances of this excellent local ballet company.

Ohio Ballet had been in a state of limbo since its performances were canceled last February amidst funding shortfalls – not to mention non-stop bashing at the hands of the Cleveland and Akron dailies – and the dancers were scattered far and wide. Surprisingly, though, Artistic Director Jeffrey Graham Hughes has reassembled eleven of the best of them for this summer’s swan song, including Oren Porterfield and Damien Highfield, who have been dancing with Ground Works and Verb lately, and Toby George, who’s been dancing principal roles for Canada’s Ballet Jorgen.

Repertoire includes “Pygmalion and Galatea,” in which the sculptor’s work of art comes to life, and the spectacular “Capture,” in which the dancers perform in, on, and off a huge rocking bowl. In “Bossa Nova” 4 couples gyrate to music by Roberto Menescal and Antonio Carlos Jobim, with the women looking especially good in short pink and orange skirts designed and executed by local Janet Bolick. Hughes says he plans to contribute something new of his own and we’re hoping he showcases the strong partnering skills that he and Ballet Mistress Pamela Reyman developed in their dancers during their 6 year tenure.

Turned Out Tikes, the interactive children’s program, begins at approximately 7:45 pm. Performance proper begins at dark, approximately 9:00 pm. Friday and Saturday 7/21 & 22 at Hardesty Park, 7/28 & 29 at Firestone Park, and August 4 & 5 at Good Year Park.

From Cool Cleveland contributors Elsa Johnson and Victor Lucas vicnelsaATearthlink.net

Cleveland Kids Hit the Big Time
by David Budin

Part 1: Picking Up Styx

It’s not often – and, actually, this may have been the first time – that a bunch of Cleveland-area teenagers have had the chance to perform a concert on the stage of Blossom Music Center. And for 7,000 cheering music fans. It is also, most likely, the first time that Cleveland’s Contemporary Youth Orchestra has performed while many in the audience drank beer. And yelled a lot, like people do (for some reason) at rock concerts.

In fact, it was a rock concert. Contemporary Youth Orchestra played with the rock band Styx to open Blossom’s 2006 season on May 25. The 115-member orchestra – made up of some of the top high-school-age musicians in the region – and its accompanying 40-member chorus of kids from age 18 all the way down to 5 performed nearly 20 songs with Styx, ranging from the group’s classic hits (like “Come Sail Away” and “Renegade”) to ‘60s cover songs (the Beatles’ “I Am the Walrus” and Blind Faith’s “Can’t Find My Way Home”) from the band’s latest CD Big Bang Theory, to a few brand-new songs debuted in this concert (which was taped by a TV crew for a future broadcast and recorded for a CD)…
Read the comment by David Budin here

Instant Karma
Quick reviews of recent events
Going out this weekend? Take along your PDA and your digital camera. Scratch out a few notes to send us with a picture of it for our Instant Karma real-world reviews of what’s really happening. We’d love to hear from you. Send your stuff to Events@CoolCleveland.com

Cleveland Orchestra @ Severance Hall 5/26 Many factors are to be considered when putting together a program to be performed by a symphony orchestra. Soloist (if any) and conductor are also very important parts of the puzzle. Last week’s program by the Cleveland Orchestra was tailor-made to demonstrate various strengths of the ensemble, its artist-in-residence and music director. There was a symphony and a concerto by one of the Romantic masters—the latter featuring a welcome soloist, who was also featured in a newer work receiving its local premiere, and a splashy, colorful suite that borders on the dissonant, but not quite. Soft, atmospheric tones lingered in the memory even as much louder cacophonous sounds displaced them. And in the middle, glorious piano performance. What more could one want?

Franz Welser-Möst returned for the final three weeks of the season to conduct this widely divergent program, featuring Mitsuko Uchida as piano soloist. It was a splendid demonstration of the capability of all the musicians assembled for the occasion…
Read the review by Kelly Ferjutz here

STYX and CYO @ Blossom 5/25 On Thursday evening at Blossom, two extraordinary ladies combined to create an extraordinary son et lumière treat for the 6600 or so fans in attendance. (Son et lumière is a theatrical entertainment presented at night in a historic, usually outdoor setting, using recorded sound, lighting, and other effects to relate the history of the place according to The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition, 2000.)

Inside the Pavilion, it was the Contemporary Youth Orchestra and Chorus, conducted by its founder and music director Liza Grossman, assisted by the men of STYX—Tommy Shaw, James Young, Lawrence Gowan, Ricky Phillips and Todd Sucherman, with a special guest appearance by founder Chuck Panozzo. Outside, it was entirely Mother Nature, who unleashed an abundance of lightning, thunder, rain and more rain…
Read the review by Kelly Ferjutz here

Verb Ballets @ Cleveland Play House 5/18 We’ve been having our problems watching dance in Cleveland lately. Everything we see on stage seems to take place beneath a pall. First it was the demise of Ohio Ballet, the area’s last fully professional dance company, all but inevitable now. Then it was Playhouse Square pulling the plug on their ballet series. Some people we’ve talked to are gleefully anticipating a share of the spoils dropping into the lap of their favorite dance company. They anticipate inheriting grant money, audiences, and dancers that used to go to local and touring ballet. But we know from experience that those assets will wither away rather than re-circulate in the local dance community. Sorry to say, it may be a long time before we have another fully professional local dance company in northeast Ohio and professional-level ballet dancing may become particularly rare on local stages.

Verb’s last concert at Cleveland Play House (5/18 & 19) showed three pieces with live music by Cleveland Composers, quite an achievement for a local dance company when Playhouse Square is complaining that they can no longer afford to present ballet companies with live music.

Verb’s concert also provided some balm for us in that all three of its featured pieces contained many balletic elements. We love modern dance but sometimes we just want to see some good local ballet.

Verb’s Artistic Director Hernando Cortez choreographed the evening’s premiere to Klaus George Roy’s Christopher Suite (1953). The suite included Overture, Passé pied, a couple of Minuets and so forth, mostly up-tempo dance forms performed on solo piano by Michael Schneider off stage. Cortez used a program note and costumes by Suzy Campbell to set the piece in ancient Egypt and found movement suitable to the exotic setting in his standard Paul Taylor tool kit…
Read the review by Victor Lucas and Elsa Johnson here

Yr Turn
Cool Cleveland readers write
We encourage our readers to speak out by sending us letters and commentary. Send your letters to Letters@CoolCleveland.com. You must include your full name (required) and you may include your e-mail address (optional). You may also create a new Hotmail, Yahoo or Gmail e-mail address and submit it with your letter. Letters submitted to Cool Cleveland, or edited portions, may be published in an upcoming issue of Cool Cleveland at our discretion.

Send your letters to: Letters@CoolCleveland.com

On a domed Browns stadium (See Put a lid on it here) are we really looking for another reason for people to refer to cleveland as the “mistake on the lake”. let’s take a look at our neighbors to the northwest. having lived in pontiac (which hosted the 1982 super bowl 16) the storefronts were filled a few weeks before everyone showed up, and have been vacant since a few weeks after the event the would “save the city”. and now they are left with a parking lot, larger than the city, that sits vacant as the city of detroit has decided to hang its fate on not only the super bowl, but the all star game, the final four and gambling. and we can see how well that is working. they still cannot afford to plow the streets in the winter or pick up the trash. police are working mandatory overtime and the public education is equal to ours. there are too many similarities to list. perhaps we would be better served to figure out how to improve the education of our city, redefine ourselves as something other than a former steel city, create reasons for people who live in the region to 1. not leave, and 2. to move back to the urban center. a single event is not going to do this. we need development at the ” mom and pop” level that creates real investment in the city. we need to create a clean city that can be lived in 24/7. we should not hang our hats on a single event coupled with a park (can anyone explain a pond adjacent to the lake) that is four times the size of millennium park in chicago, (chicago has 6 times our population). who are the people that are going to use this immense wasteland? what are these “other events” that are going to be possible because of this dome? we are smarter than this. we can find many uses for the stadium as it is today. please use reason and not let a shoddy developer, (has anyone actually looked at the quality of what he has built?) fleece the city, and its taxpayers, to satisfy his ego. we need to spend that 90 million dollars on improving the city in a diverse way with long term thinking.
from Cool Cleveland reader bradford watson bradfordawatsonATgmail.com

On Cleveland’s red-light cameras (See Yr Turn letters here and Red light cameras go too far here) Although I agree speeders must obey the law and take responsibility for their violations of the law, I also agree that these cameras may not be fair, and the fines are excessive for minor infractions. It’s also not fair to take so long to notify drivers of their violations. With Carnegie closed westbound, the city should make more of an effort to improve the traffic flow so the drivers, particularly those heading into the city weekday mornings for work, don’t feel they need to make up for lost time due to traffic backups on Carnegie Ave., Prospect Ave. and others. The other day, I e-mailed state representative Jim Trakas, who was one of several sponsors of HB No. 56, concerning the speed cameras around Cleveland, to ask him a question about the possibility that this new bill makes violations recorded by the cameras invalid. My questions to him were: Does the bill provide that a fine may not be issued if the incident occurs when no law enforcement officer is present to issue the ticket at the location of the photo-monitoring device and at the time of the incident? If a person receives a violation notice in the mail under these circumstances, would the bill support the contesting of the fine? Are there any exceptions? His reply to me was this: “The bill has been drafted and redrafted in Senate Committee eight times, and this week could provide a ninth time. As of this time, it is difficult to answer your question as it is a moving target, and information I give you today may not be true tomorrow, literally! The bill is scheduled for Senate Transportation Committee tomorrow with a Senate Floor vote on Wednesday, a House-Senate Conference Committee on Wednesday or Thursday, and the hope of wrapping it up by Thursday night. Stay tuned. “Under the House version of the bill, the answers to your questions are: 1. Yes 2. Yes and 3. Yes. Again, this could all change by the end of the week, so please check back.” You can find the bill on the Ohio General Assembly site at http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/bills.cfm?ID=126_HB_56.
from Cool Cleveland reader Sandy Fogel skauhATsbcglobal.net

I hate to disappoint you, but there is no conspiracy against suburbanites regarding red-light cameras. Cleveland, like all other communities, works hard to enforce traffic laws. Of course there are safety and economic incentives to do this. I’m not sure what utopian suburb you live in, but I’ll bet they utilize the same principles when issuing speeding tickets, parking violations and other traffic citations. The bottom line is this – you got caught speeding and your comment amounts to “sour grapes”. You threaten to boycott Cleveland because of a speeding ticket? That sounds ridiculous to me. Guess what, I’ve received speeding tickets in Brecksville and Independence. Should I now boycott those communities? Maybe they targeted me because I’m a professional that lives and works in the City of Cleveland! Now that sounds pretty ridiculous too, doesn’t it?
from Cool Cleveland reader Jeff Kipp jmkippATcore.com

What is the big deal with these red light / speed cameras. If you run a red light or speed, you get a ticket. Is that something new? Just drive the speed limit and stop at red lights and you won’t have any problems. And for the whiners who suddenly decide they won’t come downtown, apparently because they can’t speed to get here, well we won’t miss you.
from Cool Cleveland reader Thom Geist thomATbrightdsl.net

I had not read the issue of Cool Cleveland that discussed the legality, etc. of red light cameras, but I did read the letters this week in response to the issue. One issue that was not discussed in the letters is the SAFETY of having the cameras at intersections. I work in University Circle. One afternoon, while waiting to walk across the intersection of Martin Luther King and Carnegie, I heard cars come to a screeching halt. I had no idea what would make the cars all stop so suddenly, until I looked to my left and noticed that, sure enough, that intersection is equipped with one of our beloved red light cameras. No, they do not make the roads safer. Would it be better for a car to cross the intersection under a yellow light, or stop so suddenly that the car behind it that intends to go under as well plows into the back of it? I will not go as far to avoid the downtown area because then I would be punishing myself, but I do think it is silly to try to disguise a money-making scheme as being in the best interest of the public.
from Cool Cleveland reader Amanda DeWees a_dewees23AThotmail.com

On Roldo (See RoldoLINK here) You are supposed to be promoting Cleveland, not trashing it. Get rid of Roldo.
from Cool Cleveland reader Jim Meyer jimmeyerATpngusa.net

Send your letters to: Letters@CoolCleveland.com

Top 5
Here are the Top 5 from last week’s issue, with one more chance for you to click.

1) RoldoLINK Don’t know if it’s a good idea to get rid of Roldo’s column, when he’s constantly the #1 most clicked link.

2) Lakewood’s other Gold Coast A 46-unit lux boat and condo development, with units selling for $275K to $1 million done without a whiff of eminent domain, blight designation, or tax abatement.

3) Bridge & Subway Tour The rare, twice-a-year tour of the lower level of the Veterans Memorial (Detroit-Superior) Bridge & Subway was a popular event.

4) Hessler Street Fair A two-day celebration in the heart of University Circle that features music, art, poetry and politics. You’ll have to wait until next year, though.

5) Red light cameras go too far It appears a lot of people want to know what to do and are checking out this product.

Short weeks are no picnic but even the Hard Corps need some rest. Thanks to Peter Chakerian, Roxanne Ravenel, TL Champion, George Nemeth, David Budin, Kelly Ferjutz, Victor Lucas, Elsa Johnson and everyone who partners with us for getting the job done. Want to volunteer and contribute your writing to Cool Cleveland? Send your reviews, articles, or story ideas to: Events@CoolCleveland.com

Download the Cool Cleveland podcast each week at http://www.CoolCleveland.com. Click on the Cool Cleveland Blog here. Read the Cool Cleveland column each month in Cleveland Magazine here. Listen to Cool Cleveland on WCLV-FM 104.9 twice each Friday during drive time. Send your cool events to: Events@CoolCleveland.com, and your letters to: Letters@CoolCleveland.com. For your copy of the free weekly Cool Cleveland e-zine, go to http://www.CoolCleveland.com.

Apparently, it’s who ya know…

–Thomas Mulready

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