Big Fun

Big Fun

In this week’s issue:
* Big Fun Steve Presser of Big Fun on Coventry
* Big Cool Cats The Magpies on video & 50% OFF until Midnight 6/5 using “BCC50” here
* The Economy of Art Terry Stewart of the Rock Hall
* BizTech Profile Franchise King and Retail Outlet as County’s Saving Grace?
* Straight Outta Mansfield False Promise Revisited
* Ingenious Meet Jodi Kanter: Fiber Artist and Impressaria
* CityScape Returning League Park to Glory
* Sounds Zach’s What I Meant To Say
* RoldoLINKTitle On Chief Wahoo, the Lerners, Sales Tax and more…
* Cool Cleveland podcast & BFD blog & Facebook & Twitter

Around here, our lives are defined by Big Fun. Between curating the coolest stuff in the region, interviewing the most interesting people, and working with some of the finest partners one can imagine, our daily existence is a whirlwind of the best and the brightest. This month, I have the pleasure of working with one of Cleveland’s coolest, Steve Presser, the proprietor of Big Fun, just named by as one of the Top 20 coolest toy stores in the country, and now he’s opened a 2nd store on Clifton at W. 116th. Steve and I, along with Denis Devito of the band Cats On Holiday, are kicking off the first of what we hope will be an annual regional music fest featuring the finest area musicians and bands. We’re calling it Big Cool Cats (get it?), and we’re offering 50% OFF until Midnight this Fri 6/5 when you use the code “BCC50” when ordering online here.

Catch our video of Steve, and another one of bassist Doug McKean of The Magpies, also featured at Big Cool Cats. See our profile on S.A.W. Inc. and their Just-A-Buck retail concept, and a video with the Rock Hall’s Terry Stewart on the economic impact of the arts. Mansfield laments the False Promises made by Powell & Cosby, Roldo conducts a personal survey walk through Downtown, Kelly Ferjutz profiles fiber artist Jodi Kanter, and Ernie Papp thinks League Park might rise again. Sounds like Big Fun. –Thomas Mulready

Steve Presser, the proprietor of Big Fun toys on Coventry Road, recently named one of the Top 20 coolest stores in the US by Now, to the great celebration of the geographically challenged, he’s opened a West Side branch called Big Fun Cleveland at W.116th & Clifton, in the storefront that used to house the Clifton Web. You gotta see it to believe it.

Presser is also the brainstorm and one of three organizers behind the Big Cool Cats Music Festival, along with Cool Cleveland’s Thomas Mulready and Denis Devito of the band Cats On Holiday.

Watch this video by music critic and Cool Cleveland correspondent David Budin, which was shot on the grounds of Cain Park, where the Big Cool Cats Music Festival will take place. For 2-4-1 discount tickets to the Big Cool Cats Music Festival until Midnight Fri 6/5, use discount code “BCC50” at

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HOT Big Fun makes Playboy’s list of the Top 20 coolest stores in the country. Now they’re open on the West Side as well. Read (for the articles only, of course!)
Cleveland is in the Finals!! No, not the NBA — in Travel & Leisure “Favorite American Cities” rundown. Click
HOT Stick it, Forbes! “Ten Living Cities” Symposium and Arts Festival celebrates other wealth found in Forbes “10 Fastest Dying Cities” list. Registration is free!
Cleveland graffiti is world-class Take a look at a few examples that blow you away!
HOT Arts Collinwood has a hot, exciting weekend happening and you can catch a glimps of it all here
Parade the Circle Camp isn’t all Passport Project has going on this summer for kids. Soak it all up here
HOT Beck Center quoted in Time piece on how arts groups are surviving the recession. Upshot: don’t cut programming or marketing. Read
GREEN Greenhouse Tavern mentioned in National Geographic feature called “Intelligent Travel.” Very cool. Click and click again
HOT Kids are free on lawn at Blossom for Cleveland Orchestra Festival season! Click
Need a mental health retreat? This Susan Mikolic, R.N.-led event might just fit the bill. Your weekend (and a more peaceful future) starts here
Louisiana’s Cameo in “Hastily Made” Cleveland Tourism Video can be found by clicking here
You may, or may not have, heard of PechaKucha Night Cleveland Either way, it’s worth your time to click here
15 Weeks of Concerts Kicks off June 4th with the Sparx in the City Concert Series! Click
Organ Historical Society Convention Kick-Off in Cleveland is no cost, open to the public this week! Comp tix here!
HOT HELP Jeffrey Bowen, Exec Director of Habitat for Humanity tells us how you can help the org through their Community Tool Drive and Habitat ReStore. Watch
Are you hip to the Cleveland International Piano Competition being held this summer at the Cleveland Play House and Severance Hall? If not, click here
Nominate a Cleveland “Upstander” by this coming Mon 6/15. Details

The Lakewood Farmer’s Market opens for its 11th season on Wed 6/3 at 10AM in the Kaufmann Park Parking Lot behind Drug Mart, 15412 Detroit Ave, Lakewood.

Hastily Made, Hastily Judged The winners of’s viral tourism video contest have been aannounced. 1st place, 2nd place, and all the rest.

2009 Brown Bag Lecture Series The ACLU hosts commander James Copeland, former commander and current teacher at Shaw High School, to discuss the need for improved training to facilitate and encourage better community and police relations at the first of their summer series. To RSVP to any lecture, e-mail or call 472-2200. More information at

Joan Southgate, an 80-year-old grandmother and co-founder of Restore Cleveland Hope, Inc. completed a 250-mile Underground Railroad walk in order to build awareness and raise funds for RCH and University Circle Inc.’s restoration of the Cozad-Bates House! Wow!

The Magpies rock the USA & Big Cool Cats Fest
50% OFF discount ends Midnight Fri 6/5: use code “BCC50” here

The Magpies are currently on a tour of Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas, Arkansas and Missouri, and just played the Stingaree Music Festival in Crystal Beach, Texas for the second year in a row, where they won over fans and received accolades for their quality songwriting and scintillating roots-rock approach to music-making.

In Cleveland, they’ve won awards for Best Songwriting and Best Roots Band. But the rest of the country is catching on fast: Little Rock: “…The Magpies are phenomenal.” St. Louis: “…stuffed with Byrdsian jangle, Springsteen-style sprawl, and, yes, the occasional Dylan-like wordplay.” Norman, Oklahoma: “…The Magpies rocked an extraordinary one hour show.” Watch this video with bassist Doug McKean and decide for yourself.

The Magpies will be featured at the Big Cool Cats Music Fest on June 20 at Cain Park, and you can get 2-4-1 tickets only until Midnight Friday 6/5 by using the discount code “BCC50” when you check out at While at the site, check out videos of the other featured artists, a blog with the latest news, and complete information and directions.,,

Cool Cleveland Podcast Weekly roundup of cool events, in an easy-to-digest 3 minute audio format, for playback on your computer or iPod.

Click here to subscribe to the Cool Cleveland Podcast in iTunes.

SPONSORED: The Natural History of Peppers One of our favorite Cleveland chefs, Sergio Abramof of Brazil, who was Executive Chef at Giovanni’s and now owns Sergio’s and Sergio’s Sarava, is guest chef for another unforgettable evening in the Natural History of Food Series, where he will prepare a 7-course meal devoted to peppers. Mexican food expert Dea Delpapa will lead a discussion about the natural history of peppers, and you’ll experience food like never before on Sat 6/20. Reservations are available at

Captain Willie Family Lunch Pirate Cruise on Nautica Queen Join Captain Willie and first mate Zap the Pirate aboard the Nautica Queen. Children will enjoy a sail on Lake Erie as they hear stories of pirates and more. Program also includes music, trivia, balloon twisting, some magic, and even a little Cleveland history lesson. or call 696-8888.

Wunderkind Join Waterloo 7’s Wunderkind Gallery for a night of youth art, live music, and good food just like your momma makes Fri 6/5 starting at 5PM. Kick start the summer off right with art by astounding youngsters from around the Cleveland area. Email or call 440-263-2254 for details.

HOT Meet the Trucks Enjoy a day of fun and excitement with your family at the 4th annual “Meet the Trucks” event Sat 6/6 from 10AM – 2PM at Lakewood Park, 14532 Lake Rd., Lakewood. If your kiddos are into big heavy machinery and equipment, this is the place for them to come see, touch and even blow the horns of Lakewood’s finest fleet of 20+ trucks! “Jungle Bob” shows, face painting, caricature artist, balloon twister, a DJ, “bounce houses,” raffles and the Burning River Roller Derby Girls round out the fun. And hey, the park’s pretty, cool too.

Farm & Garden Day Garfield Park Nature Center (Cleveland Metroparks) hosts this fun outdoor event Sat 6/6 from 11AM – 4PM. Spend a day on the farm! Live farm animals, new and old (antique) farm equipment, and good food are part of this no cost, open to the public event (although refreshments are for sale for a fee). or call 341-3152.

HOT Get Up, Get Out & Go! offers no-cost outdoor recreational activities for kids ages 11 to 14 and their families, at Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP) and Akron-area metroparks. The series kicks off Tue 6/9 with a ride on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, starting at 6:30PM. Regular programs are Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7 – 9PM, including wilderness training, night hiking, cycling, and fishing. The finale is Wed 7/15 with a Music in the Meadow concert and family activities. Call 330-657-2752, ext. 351 or visit

Shannon Davis had a “mom” moment in her kitchen a while back. While enjoying raising her own kids, she started wanting to get back into the workforce, and didn’t find a lot of options geared towards women in her position. She has found that women generally between 25-45 who are looking to work up to 35 hours a week needed a place to go to look for employment, so she founded

The Civic Innovation Lab helped Shannon take the business to the next level with funding (she had been funding the business out of her own pocket), as well as hooking her up with mentors who could steer her business decisions in the right direction.,

A hot selection of tech and business news & events from around the region. Got business news? Send it to:

HOT Cleveland gets props in WSJ for attracting biotech industry. Click
Fast Company ranks Cleveland as one of the 13 Most Creative Cities in the whole World! Creativity!
6 Things every young entrepreneur can learn from “King James” Click
North American Travel Journalists Assocation in town this week and you can learn about their stay here
Global Forum for Business as an Agent of World Benefit is happening RIGHT NOW at CWRU. Learn more and participate
From Terrible To Terrifying: Newspaper ad sales plummet by $2.6 Billion In Q1 2009! Truth hurts

Don’t miss Midtown Brews this week! On Thu 6/4 at insivia, check out Branding Stories: Storytelling from the Depths of a Region’s Culture. Click
BioEnterprise and JumpStart co-host Consulting as an Alternative Career forum/seminar on Thu 6/4 at 3:30PM at Marriott Cle East, 26300 Harvard Rd., Warrensville Hts. The program is free, but registration is required. Register
Cle Engineering Society First Friday Social at McNulty’s Bier-Markt, 1948 West 25th St. Join CES on the first Friday of every month for networking. Register online here
Plexus Cleveland Network Night hits Tue 6/9 at Melt Bar & Grilled located at 14718 Detroit Ave., Lakewood. Click
GREEN Sustainability Inspires Innovation E4S Greater Akron Network Event hits Wed 6/10 from 5:30 – 8:30PM at Mustard Seed Market and Cafe, Akron. Register
Developers Diversified Realty CEO Scott Wolstein talks about his efforts to improve the infrastructure of Cleveland Wed 6/10. Talk intimately with one of Cle’s most influential businessmen and philanthropists. 20/30 Hosts at Key
Show Me the Money: Deal Making Strategies in a Tight Economy is the latest “Ideas at Dawn” biz breakfast Thu 6/11 at 7:30AM @ Ritz-Carlton. Registration
Market Diversification Workshop hits on Thu 6/11 at 7:30AM at the Doubletree Hotel, 6200 Quarry Ln., Independence. Registration: Katharine Boone, 432-5159. Click
MidTown Means Business! feat. keynote Mark Falanga, SVP of MMPI, formerly Medical Mart Properties, Inc. on Thu 6/18 at 11AM. Cleveland InterContinental Hotel, 9801 Carnegie Ave. Call Diane Dunleavy at 391-5080 ext #101 or register here

SME Cleveland Professional Development Day Cover your job searching bases in one day with continental breakfast and lunch included Mon 6/8 from 9AM – 3:30PM. Corporate College East, 4400 Richmond Rd., Warrensville Heights. Call 341-7632 or visit

SPONSORED: FITtech Alert You can leverage FIT Technologies’ investment in technology infrastructure. FIT Technologies uses two state-of-the-art data centers located in the heart of downtown. Your company can leverage our multimillion investment in infrastructure to allow you to focus on your core business and its growth. Call us for a free consultation. We look at what you are trying to accomplish with technology and show you ways to save money by being more efficient and effective without a big cash outlay. Learn more @ or call 216.583.0733.

Save Money, Help the Community
Franchise King and Retail Outlet as a Saving Grace for Cuy County MR/DD

A retail store in Parma offers the chance to save money and help the community. What more could one ask for? Just-a-Buck, a predominantly East Coast chain of discount stores, opened a new location at Parma’s Midtown Plaza recently. The store is owned and operated by S.A.W., Inc. — a not-for-profit corporation providing employment opportunities to persons with mental retardation and other developmental disabilities.

S.A.W., Inc. employs about 2,400 adults through contracts with local companies for packaging, data entry and similar jobs. About five years ago, S.A.W., Inc. researched opportunities for a retail store that could employ a number of its employees in a variety of capacities…

Read more from Diane DiPiero here

SPONSORED: Take ownership of your career today. Come to an MBA Open House at Baldwin-Wallace College Thu 6/11 at 6PM, that can open doors for your career. Learn how the distinctive B-W MBA programs in business administration, entrepreneurship, human resources, accounting and health care, as well as international and executive MBAs can put you on the way to a higher degree of achievement. Go to

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HOT “txt-ing”: the tenth Oddyfest show This month, the “Oddyfest” goes intertextual; during two odd Wednesdays (Wed 6/3 and Wed 6/17) the engaging stage program investigates texts and texting in this postmodern world. Both shows start at 7:30PM (doors open at 7:15) at Heights Arts Studio, 2340 Lee Rd., Cleveland Heights. Warning: this is “Rated F for bombtastic for language” (their words, not ours). Email or call 926-8641 for info/details.

Let’s Talk Art & Architecture in Cleveland This joint lecture with Steven Litt and Philip Wasserstrom offers some insight into the happenings on Cleveland’s skyline — including the highly polarizing topics of the Medical Mart and the Convention Center. Check out what promises to be a lively conversation Wed 6/3 at 7:30PM at the home of Katie & Michael Shames (there’s a limit 35 guests). Tix: contact Bonnie Marks at or call 593-6201.

Dave Marsh The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum welcomes the music critic and SIRIUS XM radio host for the Museum’s monthly program From Songwriters to Soundmen: The People Behind the Hits on Wed 6/3 at 7PM in the Museum’s 4th Floor Theater. Marsh will be interviewed by Dr. Lauren Onkey, VP of Education at the Rock Hall. Audience Q&A follows the interview. Launches a Springsteen Fan Fest surrounding the Rock Hall’s latest exhibition. Email or call 515-8426 to RSVP. No cost, open to the public.

HOT First Thursdays! Experience after work summertime fun at the local bars and restaurants of PlayhouseSquare with plenty of happy hour specials from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm starting this Thu 6/4 and repeating on the First Thursday in June, July, August and September. Live music and great social ops help you kick off the weekend at locations including Blue Bar (Wyndham Hotel), Bricco, Hanna Au Bar, Moko Cafe, Otto Moser’s and Star.

HELP The APL Rescue Party Tour Help the Cleveland APL! Their “Rescue Party Tour” hits Thu 6/4 at 7PM at the Cedar Lee Theater in Cleveland Heights and features Tom McPhee’s multi-award winning documentary An American Opera: The Greatest Pet Rescue Ever! VIP reception will begin at 6:15; screening starts at 7PM. Go to for details, tix and info. Enter the promo code “clevelandapl”.

Cleveland Urban Journalism Workshop’s 20th Anniversary hits John Carroll University Thu 6/4 at 5:30PM. Dolan Center for Science and Technology, Muldoon Atrium. Details on their Facebook page here.

Dream/Home Dobama Theatre proudly presents the World Premiere of this play by Cleveland Heights playwright Sarah Morton; directed by Sonya Robbins — which runs now through Sun 6/7. The play, commissioned by Dobama Theatre, is generously funded by Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture; it focuses, in poetic fashion, on the impact of the current foreclosure crisis on middle-class homeowners.

HELP Be The Match Fat Fish Blue hosts this important launch party and fundraiser event Thu 6/4 starting at 6PM. Chinese raffle, live music by Ozone and great nosh and adult bevvies are just part of the fun. All proceeds benefit the Be The Match Registry for cancer patients in need. Call 447-0880 ext. #103 or #106 for details and tix.

HOT Little Italy Summer Art Walk 30th Anniversary The Little Italy Merchant’s Association celebrates Fri 6/5Sun 6/7. Soak up over 20 galleries and studios, a historic neighborhood, international, national and regional art in all media, delectable Italian food, great shopping and an exciting Street Festival. Live music throughout the weekend! Hours, details and parking info at or call 421-1717.

HOT Night On Waterloo: Arts Collinwood Members’ Show The talented artists who are members of Arts Collinwood give visitors a sense of the range of work as a part of the annual “Sneak Peek” art walk fundraiser on Waterloo Rd. on Fri 6/5 from 6 – 10PM. The public is also invited to a no cost, open to the public wine and cheese reception on Sat 6/6 from 6 – 9PM. There they can browse the work in the Gallery, and make an evening of it with dinner at the adjacent Waterloo Cafe. Tix and info: or call 692-9500.

HELP Habitat for Humanity Tool Drive Takes Off! Help this very cool org in their mission in this kick-off Fri 6/5 at 11AM. Special guests include Mayor Frank Jackson, County Commissioner Peter Lawson Jones, County Treasurer Jim Rokakis and County Solid Waste District Director Diane Bickett. 2110 W. 110th St.

HOT Quake Lucy is on a cross-country mission, looking for the love of her life. Her journey takes her across the American landscape, through a rollicking series of hilarious and highly eccentric relationships that cross state lines and fault lines, exploring the unpredictable geography of the human heart. Check out Quake at convergence-continuum Fri 6/5 and on through late June. Liminis, 2438 Scranton Rd., Tremont. call 687-0074 or visit

Marcia Ball Texas-born, Louisiana-raised pianist/ vocalist/ songwriter Marcia Ball, touring in support of her Grammy-nominated CD, Peace, Love & BBQ, will perform in Cleveland on Fri 6/5 at the Beachland Ballroom on Waterloo. Ball’s groove-laden New Orleans R&B, heart-wrenching ballads and driving Gulf Coast blues have made her a one-of-a-kind favorite of music fans all over the world. Worth a look-listen.

HOT A Countdown to Awesome William Rupnik Gallery (formerly Artchitecture Gallery) offers an exhibition of new works by Ales BASK Hostomsky starting with an opening reception Fri 6/5 from 7 – 10PM. Contrasting feelings of anxiety and excitement, uncertainty and exhilaration, Bask’s newest installations and paintings coalesce emotions often associated with an inescapable obligation or event; rousing both apprehension and optimism. Score details and directions at

SPONSORED: Question: What Do Uncle Sam, Mickey Mouse and Superman Have in Common? Answer: Andy Warhol. The Cleveland Institute of Art is proud to announce a rare opportunity to view a private collection of prints created by the famed Andy Warhol this summer in Cleveland. From Fri 6/5 – Sun 8/16 in the Reinberger Galleries, CIA presents “Andy Warhol Prints: 1974-1986. Works from the Cochran Collection.” The thirty-six iconic prints included in this exhibition include individual prints and the “Cowboys and Indians” and “Myth Series” collection. Prints of the Wicked Witch, Dracula and Santa Claus, General Custer, Teddy Roosevelt, John Wayne and Annie Oakley are all part of this exhibit. This is the first time this collection has been seen in Ohio. More info at

HOT Dave Brubeck The legendary jazz piano great’s appearance at the 30th annual Tri-C JazzFest — which was scheduled for Fri 5/1 at the Allen Theatre in PlayhouseSquare — was rescheduled for Sat 6/6. Brubeck’s make-up date invites listeners to take a Time Out for that and other classic works. Don’t miss your chance at the jazz icon. Details and tix.

Super Salsa Orquestra TropicalCleveland presents their “Super Salsa Saturday” — an evening of sensational rhythm and spectacular dancing — this Sat 6/6. Featuring the live salsa band Tumbao Salsa (upbeat band of Salseros from Michigan) attendees will enjoy a mix of Tito Puente, Eddie Palmieri, Ray Barreto and more. Silk Nightclub, 1148 Main Ave. Score all details at

HOT Archwood Street Fair Take a stroll down Brooklyn Centre’s Archwood Avenue on Sat 6/6 from 10AM – 4PM. In addition to 40+ garage sales along Archwood from Pearl Rd. to Fulton Rd. there will be food, community services (health screenings, foreclosure prevention, historic preservation, etc), and live music. Ceud Mile Failte (A Hundred Thousand Welcomes) will perform original Celtic-inspired jigs, reels, hornpipes, strathspeys, and waltzes written by band member Paul Kirk. No cost, open to the public. Email or call 459-9261 for details.

HELP Take Steps for Crohn’s & Colitis Hundreds of NEO residents are expected to join this walking event Sat 6/6 from 5:30 – 9PM, launching at Progressive Field. This is the nation’s largest annual event dedicated to finding cures for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis; proceeds benefit crucial research for these debilitating diseases. Visit or contact Patty Kaplan at 831-2692 for more info.

Plan 9 From Outer Space On Sat 6/6 at 9:30PM and midnight, the Cedar Lee Theatre will put a dent in its “sterling reputation” for delivering artistic film when it presents director Ed Wood, Jr.’s hilariously incompetent 1959 film. Shown as part of the Cedar Lee Theatre Cult Film Series.

SPONSORED: Don’t miss the opening of Surviving: The Body Of Evidence at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History this Sat 6/6. Be the first to experience this incredible interactive exhibition and hold the hand of the famous “Lucy,” our human ancestor from over 3 million years ago. Listen to audio re-enactments of scientists making their breakthrough discoveries, and watch video of nanotech engineers and evolutionary biologists discussing where humans will go from here. Best of all, the exhibition is included in your CMNH admission, with no charge for kids on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3-5PM.

Sunday Lolly the Trolly Tours @ Lakeview Cemetery Taking your family out to the cemetery may not sound like a good time, but it can be an interesting and educational outing for school-agers and their accompanying grown-up. Catch a ride with Lolly the Trolly and enjoy a 75-minute tour of this historical and beautiful cemetery. This outing includes a stop by the Garfield Monument. Check it out Sun 6/7. or call 421-2665.

Karen E. Quinones Miller The aughot will visit Cuyahoga County Public Library’s Maple Heights Branch (5225 Library Ln., Maple Heights) on Sun 6/7 at 1PM for a lively discussion on how to get published in today’s ultra-competitive market. If you have a novel or a book in you that needs to get out, this would be a good place to start. Call 475-5000 for more info.

National Trails Day Bike Ride On Sun 6/6 at 10:00AM, in conjunction with National Trails Day, join bicyclists from all over the greater Cleveland for a 9 mile bike ride through Slavic Village — launching from Washington Reservation (3841 Washington Park Blvd.) at 10:00am. Check out industrial and residential areas of the neighborhood and ride to the Mill Creek History Center. Call 429-1182, ext. #107 for details or check out

Restoring Prosperity to Cleveland Mini-Summit On Mon 6/8 starting at 10:30AM, join Policy Bridge and corporate, civic, political, academic and philanthropic leaders from the Cleveland area to explore alignment of the Cleveland urban revitalization agenda with state reforms. Wolstein Center at CSU, 2000 Prospect Ave. Details here.

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SPONSORED: These days, many area stations are turning to imported programs to replace locally produced shows. But not WCLV 104.9 FM, which remains not only locally owned but which produces locally most of its programming… including broadcasts by The Cleveland Orchestra, Apollo’s Fire and from CIM, Baldwin-Wallace, Cleveland State and Oberlin. Complete details on WCLV’s exclusive classical music programming can be found at

Terry Stewart and his staff raised $6 million to bring the Rock Hall induction ceremonies to Cleveland in April. The exact economic impact of the event has not been announced yet, but the Rock Hall was estimating $7-$10 million dollars of impact on the region, and that was before they knew that Metallica wanted to bring in 150 people, Wanda Jackson planned to travel with her 20+ person posse, plus the extra-large TV crew necessary for the large public Induction event at Public Hall.

Caterers, cab drivers, hotel workers, restaurant employees and club personnel all felt the buzz and the economic spillover from the 2009 Induction week, and planning is underway for 2012, when the Inductions return to the Rock and Roll capital. Watch the video shot by Cool Cleveland kids correspondent Max on the Red Carpet as the celebrities and posers emerged from their limos to attend the Induction ceremonies, which has received over 10,000 views on YouTube here.

False Promise Revisited

My column last week, wherein I challenged the efficacy of America’s Promise Alliance (a program run by Colin and Alma Powell, and touted by Bill Cosby) certainly caused a firestorm of controversy. There’s nothing like challenging the logic of two of America’s most beloved and venerated father figures to stir things up a bit; but despite the criticism I received, I’m sticking to my position. This issue is just too important to gloss over…

Read more from Mansfield B. Frazier here

Making Connections
Meet Jodi Kanter: Fiber Artist and Impressaria

“I exist for what I do,” says the bright-eyed, red-haired Jodi Kanter. “Each person is many parts: you the character, you the artist, you the whatever-you-do, all of these you’s are one big creation. Like part of a weaving, a tapestry.”

Sometimes her smile seems larger than her face. Jodi is a native Clevelander and always knew she would be an artist, even if she wasn’t too sure of what kind at the beginning. Lessons at the Cleveland Institute of Art nourished her interest in visual arts, while ballet lessons encouraged her love of classical music. Both are still with her in her everyday life…

Read more from Kelly Ferjutz here

There Used to be a Ballpark
… and with League Park, there may yet be again

Ah yes, the Great American Pastime. The Indians are into the first half of the season at Progressive Field (we won’t talk about their record). But in another time, in another place, the cry of “Play Ball” was heard to the east of it. The National Anthem echoed in the air there, too. There was the crack of a bat and the cheers of thousands of baseball fans — just like Clevelanders expect at the corner of Ontario and Carnegie every year…

Read more from Ernie L. Papp here

What I Meant To Say
Buffalo ZEF Records

Parma-born singer-songwriter Zach is tireless. In the last decade, the Akron native has released nine albums and performed 200+ shows a year. He’s played onstage with everyone from Dave Matthews and Neil Young to War and Chicago. And on his latest soulful effort, What I Meant To Say, he delivers his ten best and most organic-sounding tracks yet…

Read more from Peter Chakerian here

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

Walking is Depressing in Downtown Cleveland
Plus: Deep-Six Chief Wahoo, Life is Good For Lerners, Sales Tax Hike and more…

I ventured downtown Monday and was shocked by what I saw. Or what I didn’t see. Cleveland — a virtual ghost city. At 11AM. At a crossroads of downtown at East 9th Street and Euclid Avenue. Scary empty

Read more from Roldo Bartimole here

Quick reviews of recent events
Submit your own review or commentary to

Cleveland Orchestra @ Severance Hall 5/28 Read more from Kelly Ferjutz here

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

1) Big Cool Cats Music Festival Get 2-4-1 tix until Midnight Fri 6/5 with discount code BCC50. Plus, watch band videos.

2) Women needed For CWRU study of Pregnancy & Fertility.

3) False Promise Colin Powell & Bill Cosby. How can they both be so wrong?

4) Local Food Cleveland Are you hip?

5) Political Laugh-In Turns out Roldo does have a sense of humor.

Credit Where Due Thanks to Peter Chakerian, T.L. Champion, George Nemeth, Jeannie Fleming-Gifford, Claudia J. Taller, Ernie L. Papp, Mansfield B. Frazier, Greg Cielec, Roldo Bartimole and Kelly Ferjutz. Special thanks to Ruth J. Chakerian. 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:

Full of Big Cool Fun every week,
–Thomas Mulready
Cool Networks LLC / 14837 Detroit #105 / Cleveland, OH 44107

All contents (c)2009 Cool Networks LLC all rights reserved


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