Since the retro diner cars parked in Cleveland Heights arrived several years ago on Lee Road, they have had multiple owners. Usually, they served up good old-fashioned diner food with some success, but never lasted all that long. So when we heard that a new owner was planning to reopen and in fact received a gift card for Christmas to the newly-opened diner (what – a gift card for a diner?!) we decided to check it out.
I’m telling you now that you need to wipe out any preconceptions of diner food when you visit Clyde’s (1975 Lee Road – 216.321.7100) . The first clue that this is no ordinary diner experience is their valet parking. The second clue is the décor when you step through the front doors. Bright yellows and reds greet you with comfy deco-style couches in the entry. Wall-to-wall zebra stripe carpeting lines the dining area and you can almost hear old blue eyes crooning in the lounge (nice use of the old counter space as a bar).
The menu features everything from steak and seafood to pasta and burgers. No kids’ menu, but they are willing to serve half portions of most items on the menu. Definitely not what you would expect from a diner, and definitely worth a visit. –Submitted by TB
EDITOR’S NOTE: Read more about Clyde’s and what they’re trying to do with the diner cars here.
Saturday was a musical whirlwind. I wanted to see my friend Jason’s band, Rambler 454, play at The Grog Shop in Cleveland Heights. Jason’s band is full of guys who have day jobs and sailboats, but don deep fried, beer-soaked, Dukes of Hazzard-worthy alter egos at night with names like “Jesse” and “Cooter.” I enjoyed a great meal at Mint Cafe down the street (tofu and string beans, extra spicy) before hitting The Grog.
August 15, 2008 was a very special day for me. From the minute I walked into Cain Park I knew this was going to be a special event. The line waiting to get in was a long one. That is where you usually find me; the line for the lawn. We usually try to get there at least an hour ahead of time or maybe a little earlier than that to sit on the lawn. But this show was different. We had seats.
I purchased tickets almost three months in advance for this particular concert. That is something I never do, but I was so excited to see these bass legends that I wanted to be up close. (I missed Wooten when he was in town playing Beachland Ballroom recently and regretted it.) Also, I wasn’t sure about the weather and I thought it was my safest bet since it is an outdoor theater.
When my husband and I found our seats there were already about 30 people milling in front of the stage. My husband who is a musician said they were all checking out the set up and the gear. Yes, this was a real musician’s concert. There was even a guy walking around with his bass.
In my opinion, Cain Park is one of the best venues for outdoor concerts in the city. The great thing about Cain Park is that you can see from just about anywhere in the amphitheater. The Pavilion section at the front of Evans Amphitheater seats around 1,000 people and the lawn is located right behind. They divide the lawn into two sections, blankets up front and lawn chairs in the back so there is no obstruction to your view. The amphitheater actually reminds you of Blossom Music Center, only smaller and more intimate.
Because Cain Park is smack dab in the middle of a neighborhood, there is no parking lot. Parking is on the neighboring streets. There is also a bus that leaves Severance Shopping Center in front of Bally’s Total Fitness on concert nights. This runs an hour before concert time up to an hour after the show.
There are two entrances to the park for concerts I usually use the Goodnor & Superior entrance. It slopes down into a valley. For people who may be physically challenged there is a golf cart type of shuttle that will take people down the hill and back up to the entrance.
If you have never been to Cain Park (14591 Superior Rd at Lee), take a look at their website and plan on attending this year or next summer. There are events for everyone. –SS