Where is the future of NEO? Some are placing their faith in the new County structure and leaders. Here at Cool Cleveland, we’re convinced that entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship is our best strategy for creating jobs, stimulating our local economy.

This week we throw the CC spotlight on local entrepreneurs such as fashion designer Valerie Mayen, fresh off her stint on Bravo’s Project Runway; musician-entrepreneur Mike Petrone, celebrating 30 musical years; Ray Petro, happy to be a part of the Trek Bike family; and young artists Zoe & Victoria Yin, via Skype, ready to set the art world on fire. Plus, we preview theatre, an event and a screening at CMA, Alice by Dancing Wheels, The Polar Express, a Pop-Up gift shop, cool events for every day of the week, plus it’s still Cle Restaurant Week. Talk about entrepreneurial. –Thomas Mulready

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VIDEO: Valerie Mayen
Can You Hear the Buzz (and Growl?)

Yellowcake, Valerie Mayen’s fashion design studio, is buzzing with activity in the wake of her appearances on season eight of Bravo’s Project Runway. The fallout from the six-months of activity before, during and after the show have left her in-box full, her head spinning and her plans going full-throttle forward for Cleveland and its fashion community.

Listen to Valerie talk about Buzz & Growl, her latest venture, a sewing co-op created for fashion designers (students, hobbyists and professionals) giving them access to studio work space which houses all the expensive machines and equipment needed to construct garments. Watch the video by Carol Drummond here.

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SPONSORED: Score big for the community! United Way’s 8th Annual Sports Auction on WTAM.com is live thru Fri 11/12 @ 7PM. Just a sampling of items: Peyton Hillis football, Mo Williams jersey, Opening Day Indians tickets, Monsters game Zamboni ride and two weekly Bridgestone Invitational Championship Club tickets. For more information, visit UnitedWayCleveland.org/auction or contact Michelle Battle at 216-436-2121 or mbattle@unitedwaycleveland.org.

Delve deeper into local food economics at the next Cleveland EcoTuesday meeting on Tue 11/16 @ Key Ctr. Sustainability maven Donita Anderson, Executive Director of North Union Farmers Market [pictured], will discuss how to create a thriving biz that also makes the world a better place.

* The Great Lakes Compact Advisory Board is attempting to conserve our water supply. But are their recommendations good enough?
* Winterizing Your Home Learn how @ the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes on Thu 11/11 at 7PM.
* Pop-Up Gift Shop will be sprouting up in a vacant space in Trinity Commons. Another great reason to Shop Local.
* Remember the big kids this holiday season. Donate gift cards to teens waiting for adoption.
* One part slack-jawed enthusiasm, two parts nonchalant despair. Introducing new lit/arts online mag The Cleveland Review.
* Jim O’Bryan runs for Mayor of Lakewood View the exclusive Cool Cleveland video interview here.

Click here for more News and Biz

VIDEO: CIM’s Xerxes is Fresh
Handel’s craziest opera

Costumer Alison Garrigan sports bright red hair and a devilish sense of humor, not to mention her sense of style. Known for her bleeding-edge work at avant-garde theatres, Garrigan brings a “steampunk” look to the Cleveland Institute of Music’s innovative take on Handel’s delightful Xerxes, pushing multiple envelopes at once.

As evidenced by this exclusive video interview with CoolCleveland’s Thomas Mulready, the production takes no prisoners: a multi-gendered lead role, outrageous costuming & lighting, supertitles so you know exactly what’s going on. Xerxes was Handel’s 35th opera, and one of his best: make it one of yours. Wed 11/17Sat 11/20 at Kulas Hall, Cleveland Institute of Music. 216-791-5000 X411 or www.CIM.edu.

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SPONSORED: Savor some of Cleveland’s best cuisine. Over 90 restaurants, all locally owned and operated, host Cleveland Restaurant Week, which takes place through Sun 11/14. (No need to thank us for this great excuse for dining out this week!) Remember: Eat. Drink. Local. http://www.ClevelandIndependents.com.

VIDEO: Zoe & Victoria Yin
Artists aged 9 & 13 to exhibit work in Cleveland

When artist Victoria Yin became the youngest artist ever exhibited at the International Art Expo at age 10, it would have been difficult to imagine that her record would be broken the following year, when her younger sister broke the same record at age 8. Now their works are being collected internationally, and the buzz couldn’t be louder.

Watch this Skype video of Victoria & Zoe Yin as they work in their studios in Boston and talk with Thomas Mulready of CoolCleveland.com via Skype. The young artists talk about their working methods and what, if any, artists may be influencing their current work. Victoria & Zoe Yin will be exhibiting their paintings at the Beck Center for the Arts, with an opening on Fri 11/12 from 6-9PM, and at The O Gallery at La Place, with an opening on Sat 11/13 from 2-5PM. Watch the video here. More details here: http://www.ZoeYin.com. For information on the artists, contact Paul Sykes at 440-227-4592.

SPONSORED: It’s holiday time at The Holden Arboretum! The beauty of Northeastern Ohio provides inspiration for handcrafted gifts during Gifts from the Heart of Nature, Sat 11/13 through Fri 11/26. This event features regional artists who craft original gifts inspired by nature, many made from environmentally responsible materials. Hours are 9AM to 5PM daily, except for Thanksgiving and Christmas Days. A complete list of artists and their mediums is at HoldenArb.org.

Alice in Wonderland… like it’s never been seen before! The Dancing Wheels Dance Co. presents a hip, kaleidoscopic trip down the rabbit hole on Fri 11/12 @ LCCC. Perfect for all ages. Performance also includes other fam-friendly repertory pieces.

* The Snow Maiden @ UA A heart-warming, seasonal dance delight on Sat 11/13.
* Robotics: Music & Sound Teens make robots programmed to dance & play on Wed 11/10 @ CCPL.
* The Polar Express All kids are crazy for this magical train ride complete w/ cookies & hot cocoa.

Click here for more Cool Cleveland Kids events

SPONSORED: Get the golden ticket! Enter Near West Theatre’s version of the mysterious world of Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka, a tale about human excess, consumption and their dangerous effects on society. Audiences of all ages will be mesmerized by the futuristic oompa loompas and chocolate river in this musical adaptation of the beloved children’s book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Performances run Fri 11/19 through Sun 12/5. Get your tickets at http://www.NearWestTheatre.org.

Mike Petrone performs benefit concert for Cleveland School of the Arts

It’s difficult to know where to begin when writing an article about a sibling. Simply put, there’s too much source material. We’ll start with the obvious: Cleveland jazz pianist Mike Petrone is playing a benefit concert for the Cleveland School of the Arts on Sat 11/20. The presenting sponsor is Medical Mutual of Ohio. Details on how you can get tickets are at the end of this article. There, now that that’s out of the way, what do you want to know about this guy?

He’s one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. He’s celebrating 30 years as a professional musician, but he’s younger than one might think. As I recall, Mike’s first public performance was in the Coventry Road convent where the nuns from St. Ann School used to live. We were there with our father, and someone sat Mike down at the piano and he played The Entertainer much to the delight of the adults present. Even as a third grader, he had a good left hand for bass lines.

As long as I can remember, Mike has been playing the piano. I have vivid memories of leaning on the much-abused piano in the house where we grew up, watching his hands and fingers as he practiced. He would play the same complicated riff ten, twenty times in a row, until he had it… Read more from Susan Petrone here

WED 11/10
Wendy Park: Revisited Attend an important public mtg on Wed 11/10 to transform Wendy Park [pictured]. Have a beer @ Great Lakes Brewing Co. and watch as landscape architects CMG share their initial concept designs of the park. Then discuss. Help the park reach its full potential.

* Harmonic Hues CIM New Music Ensemble @ MOCA.
* Are frogs in danger? Holden Arb lecture explores habitat fragmentation’s effects on amphibians.

Click here for more events on Wed 11/10

SPONSORED: The WCLV LifeShare Thanks-for-Giving Blood Drive takes place on Thu 11/11, Veterans’ Day, from 8AM to 8PM on the campus of Lorain County Community College. The WCLV blood drive formula of good food, good music, WCLV Goodybags and good prizes from the WCLV Prize Wheel will prevail. The first 100 blood donors will receive a dozen long-stem roses from Botamer Florists. WCLV air personalities will broadcast regular reports on the drive throughout the day. http://www.WCLV.com

THU 11/11
Metamorphoses @ CSU is a play equally comical, breathtaking, heartbreaking & sublime. Adapted from the myths of Ovid, Metamorphoses is centered on humans’ ability to transform. Catch the opening performance on Thu 11/11 at CSU Factory Theatre. Directed by Holly Holsinger.

* BRAINPEOPLE @ Convergence Continuum. Last weekend to see this surreal psych drama.
* Mystery, CSI & Cleveland lore An Evening w/ Lisa Black to benefit Lkwd Public Library Foundation.
* Radio Mystery Theater Social Hour Listen to old-time radio shows @ Aperture.
* A visceral meeting of two Italian & French extremes Opera Cleveland presents Pagliacci and La Voix Humaine.
* CPT: Little Box Local playwrights reign @ Cle Public Theatre.

Click here for more events on Thu 11/11

FRI 11/12
An Evening of Song, Satire & Social Significance Folk artists Lou & Peter Berryman sing songs everyone can relate to — songs about cleaning the fridge & painting the living room. Let ’em entertain you w/ satire & social commentary on Fri 11/12. Also hear Cle’s own Deborah Van Kleef [pictured]. The concert is a benefit for Anne Feeney, singer/songwriter & fighter for working people.

* Microbrew Extravaganza @ Massimo da Milano Eat, drink & help out the Free Clinic.
* Inlet Dance Theatre: “Stone by Stone.” A brand-new dance piece based on the life of Nehemiah.
* One World Rhythm Bob yr head & clap yr hands to African beats.
* Juxtaposition @ Brandt Gallery Two Cle artists. One space.

Click here for more events on Fri 11/12

SAT 11/13
Crafty Mart features atypical arts & crafts created by Akronites. Come to Musica on Sat 11/13 for a local shopping extravaganza of awesomeness. Peruse handmade items from dozens of vendors & get a jump-start on yr holiday shopping. Kids stuff, jewelry, clothing, accessories–this place has it all.

* CHOD: Ramifications @ (Art)ificial Gallery A “choose your own adventure” art experience.
* Verb Ballets travel to Y-town for a family-friendly performance of Peter & the Wolf + more.
* NEO Local Food Mini-Congress Can we create 28K jobs from local food production? Explore the possibilities.
* Coffee Blending Workshop & Roastery Tour @ Cle’s beloved Phoenix Coffee.
* American Music Masters conference & tribute concert to Fats Domino & Dave Bartholomew.
* Cats On Holiday make a rare appearance with CoolCleveland’s Thomas Mulready sitting in at Fat Fish Blue.

Click here for more events on Sat 11/13

SUN 11/14
Pianist Daniel Gortler has received praise for both his technical mastery and his musical ingenuity. In short, people think he rocks at playing the piano (in a classical sort of way). He’ll play for you on Sun 11/14 @ Cle Museum of Art.

* Ted McClelland: Young Mr. Obama Author & veteran Chi journalist @ Visible Voice Books.

Click here for more events on Sun 11/14

MON 11/15
Magic Kids @ Beachland They’re not kids anymore. And they’re not really magic. But they’re cool nonetheless: Magic Kids. This somewhat mysterious band of pop pranksters create joyous songs w/ impressive harmony & old-fashioned instrumentation. Total pop perfection? Attend their concert on Mon 11/15 & decide for yourself.

Click here for more events on Mon 11/15

TUE 11/16
TMF Winter Markets Stock up on produce @ Tremont Farmers’ Market’s monthly winter market. Yes, locally-grown food does exist in this bitterly cold winter months. Go to the market on Tue 11/16 & stock up on Thanksgiving goods.

* Int’l light artist Jim Campbell gives a free speech @ CIA.

Click here for more events on Tue 11/16

WED 11/17
44th Kent State Folk Festival Pay homage to the old while paying attention to the new. Hear from the next generation of folk musicians @ the Kent State Folk Festival from Wed 11/17Sat 11/20. Workshops, Brazilian music & headline concerts feat. Jessica Lea Mayfield [pictured], Shawn Colvin, Eddie from Ohio & more.

* The Desert of Forbidden Art @ CMA A film to change the world — or at least yr perception of it.

Click here for more events on Wed 11/17

Send your cool events to: Events@CoolCleveland.com

The Desert of Forbidden Art
An International Treasure Resurfaces in Cleveland

Once in a while a cultural phenomenon comes along, resonates with its audience – men and women, young and old, American, Asian and European, Christian, Jewish and Muslim – and penetrates so deeply that it connects all of the above, reminding us that we aren’t all that different. The band U2 has this power, so did Picasso, as well as last year’s big Oscar winner Slum Dog Millionaire. These messengers of truth arrive on Earth, touch our souls and collectively reinstate a sense of transformed order in an otherwise chaotic, political and power-through-violence world.

We need the arts. If, for no other reason, according to Martin Scorsese, who turned to movies as his survival mechanism, it’s to sit in a theater and to finally “feel safe.” If a film does its job, it transports us to a different place, like a virtual time machine, introducing us to cultures, characters and complications that are simultaneously new and familiar. If a film excels, then we come back, over and over again, each time catching a new detail, a fresh perspective and even a deeper appreciation for the message.

The Desert of Forbidden Art, screening at the Cleveland Museum of Art on Wed 11/17, is a film festival darling that made its Northeast Ohio debut at the Cleveland International Film Festival (CIFF) this past Spring, and has been captivating the globe ever since… Read more from Alex Sukhoy here

Right after county reform was voted in I asked Jim Rokakis if he planned to throw his hat into the ring for the executive’s job, to which he responded very swiftly and loudly “no way, no how.” And, while some pretty powerful folks hereabouts lobbied him hard, he stuck to his decision because he felt it was a no-win situation.

He said something to the effect of “no matter what kind of job the new county executive does, no matter if the person elected is able to walk on water, they’re still going to try to crucify them.”

Hark! Is that the sound of a cross already being nailed together that I hear…?
Read this story from Mansfield Frazier here

Read other recent pieces by Mansfield Frazier here

Power To Everyday Objects
Kim Boem: “Objects Being Taught They Are Nothing But Tools” @ CMA

It’s tool time indeed at the Cleveland Museum of Art where contemporary Korean Artist Kim Beom will be presenting his first solo museum exhibition in the United States. Featuring mixed-media installations and a collection of 17 drawings, “Objects Being Taught They Are Nothing But Tools” opens Sun 11/14 and runs through Sun 3/6/11 at the prestigious Cleveland institution.

In a nutshell, Beom relies on deadpan humor, absurdist enunciation, poetry and childlike imagery to investigate our perception of the world. Furthermore, the artist challenges the viewer through the visual tradition of illusionism to become actively engaged in the projection of images and thoughts on everyday utensils.

What may sound esoteric or, gasp, deeply abstract is nothing more than Beom provoking the illusion that the objects are animated with human traits. Cool Cleveland talked to Cleveland Museum of Art Contemporary Arts Curator Paola Morsiani about this unique exhibit, which stems from the idiom “don’t judge a book by its cover…” Read more from John Benson here

VIDEO: Ray Petro’s New Adventure
Founder of Ray’s MTB

Does Ray Petro look happy? After building Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park in Cleveland in his spare time off from his carpentry work in 2003, and growing the Park and his business with a grant from the Civic Innovation Lab, he became part of the Trek Bicycle Company family in 2010 as he was building his second park in Milwaukee near Trek’s HQ.

Listen as Ray talks about how thrilled he is to be designing and building new parks full time, instead of doing paperwork and fundraising. We wish Ray and his new family all the best, and we’re proud to say that it all started right here in Cleveland. Click here to watch videos of Ray Petro, Joe V. of Trek, and Keith Miller, the new GM of Ray’s MTB in Cleveland.

PREVIEW: BW grad Kristopher Thompson-Bolden to appear in Billy Elliot @ PS by Roy Berko

PREVIEW: Foodies Unite! – Fabulous Food Show 2010 by Susan Schaul

VIDEO REVIEW: Bioneers Cleveland Conference @ Tri-C 11/4 – 11/6/10 by Susan Schaul

REVIEW: Jonathan Franzen – A Public Reading by a Private Man @ CPL 11/08/10 by Alex Sukhoy

Losing a Church but Gaining a Community: A Follow-up Great to see believers in the greater God than the (air)heads of the church. As a Catholic educated: K-8, 9-12, JCU:BA, MEd., see CSP stand UP in their actions and beliefs. Hit the morons downtown where it hurts most: in the collection Basket!! Send them back to cover-up scandals…
Read the comment from Mark Fredrick here

Read and comment here: http://www.coolcleveland.com/blog

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

1) Moxie, Parallax, and Table 45 Receive 2010 Sante Restaurant Awards

2) Losing a Church But Gaining a Community

3) It all starts With the Birds… And the Bees

4) Charming house Near Coventry, UH & Case: SOLD!!

5) Mansfield False Courage

It’s the business of our writers to uncover the coolness of NEO: John Benson, Roy Berko, Carol Drummond, Mansfield Frazier, Susan Petrone, Susan Schaul, Alex Sukhoy, and Sarah Valek. And lastly, though certainly not least, thanks to our readers and everyone who partners with us. Want to volunteer and contribute your writing to Cool Cleveland? Send your reviews, articles, or story ideas to: Events@CoolCleveland.com.

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Entrepreneurs are the future of NEO,

–Thomas Mulready

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