Tag Archive | travel

Cleveland Weekend Update: August 10-12, 2012

Tour Cleveland Plus 

Take the stress out of sightseeing and enjoy more of the city with entertaining and interesting guided tours. Imagine; no more wrestling with maps or arguing with your GPS and a knowledgeable guide pointing out the city’s hidden gems. Narrated city tours combine comfort with a storytelling adventure to discover the character of Cleveland. Travel by quaint trolley, rent a bike, glide via an electric Segway, hop aboard a climate-controlled bus or hit the ground with your own two feet.

Step to the Sights

Through Take A Hike! Tours, visitors can experience exciting tours through downtown’s most intriguing districts with the help of costumed historical characters from Cleveland’s past.

Sedan safaris, step-on guides and guided walking tours make these Walking Tours of Cleveland and Electric Transport tours pleasant, fun and affordable. Visitors also can get acquainted with the city with a one-hour narrated electronic Segway adventure of local art, architecture and history.   

Two-wheeled Tours 

See beautiful Cleveland architecture up close as history comes alive through the storytelling tours of Bob’s Bike Tours.  The bike treks are easy with two different tours available. Lake Erie adds a stunning backdrop to all your photos.

Tours with Flavor

Taste Cleveland and Food Tours bring together history, architecture and cuisine in a variety of different venues and historic neighborhoods. Enjoy Cleveland’s ethnic cuisine through progressive meals as the city simmers with excitement, nightlife and fantastic dining options.

NEO Food Tours features six to eight restaurants on a guided walking tour of specific neighborhoods throughout Northeast Ohio.  The tours are designed for those who enjoy unique, local food, as well as learning the unique story behind each neighborhood.

Hop Aboard!

The 38-passenger Lolly the Trolley streetcars cover more than 20 miles of facts and fun during their narrated sightseeing tours. Passengers can choose from a variety of regular and specialty tours throughout the year.

Discovery Tours leads interesting winery, lighthouse, city, natural heritage and Amish country tours on comfortable buses.  Step-on guides, spousal tours and custom-designed day trips are also available.

Lake Erie Cruising Tours

The Nautica Queen luxury cruise dining ship gives tours of Lake Erie and the mouth of the Cuyahoga River.  Enjoy lunch or dinner with musical entertainment, as you cruise under historic bridges and through Downtown Cleveland’s sparkling skyline.

The Goodtime III is Cleveland’s largest sightseeing boat offering narrated tours and entertainment excursions with elaborate buffet dining and casual cuisine.

Cleveland Events This Weekend:

Cuyahoga County Fair, Berea – August 6-12

Lake Erie Crushers v. Florence Freedom, All Pro Freight Stadium – August 10-12

Akron Aeros v. New Hampshire, Canal Park – August 10-12

Indians v. Red Sox, Progressive Field – August 10-12

Cinema at the Square (Rebel Without A Cause), Palace Theater – August 10

Cinema at the Square (Casablanca), Palace Theater – August 11

Mid West Reggae Fest, Whiskey Island – August 11

Cinema at the Square (Some Like It Hot), Palace Theater – August 11

Visit www.positivelycleveland.com for more info and help planning your weekend in CLE.

For more events and help planning your weekend in CLE visit http://www.positivelycleveland.com.

– MaryKate McHugh

Mythic Creatures and Colorful Frogs!

For daughters who dream of mermaids and sons who carry home frogs, Cleveland, Ohio has the perfect combination of exhibits for families to explore. A family vacation to Cleveland Plus costs 40-60 percent less than one to cities like New York, Philadelphia or Los Angeles – without sacrificing any of the experience! Check out these exhibits to peak your children’s curiosity this summer and let their imaginations soar.

Mythic Creatures: Dragons, Unicorns & Mermaids, The Natural History Museum
What creatures live in dark places, are covered with fur, scales or slime, have a long tail, too many eyes or not enough? They also love to create wind, fire and destruction. What are they? Mythic creatures – our favorite imaginary friends. They used to come to life in books and movies, but now, through eye-popping models, preserved specimens and prehistoric fossils, kids can investigate how these legendary creatures sprang to life in our imaginations. This wonderful exhibit highlights our favorites, water creatures like the Kraken, sea monsters and mermaids; the land creatures, like griffins, unicorns and ape men; and the flying creatures: the Phoenix, sphinx, and Pegasus and dragons. For a scarey-good time, families can take a walk with their favorite mythical creatures. Open through August 12.
www.cmnh.org

Frogs! A Chorus of Colors, The Great Lakes Science Center
What’s more fun than one slippery, green, croaking and hopping little frog? 70 of them all in the same place! In this exhibit, families discover more than 70 live frogs from around the world, showcased in detailed habitats complete with rock ledges, live plants and waterfalls. Encounter visually stunning creatures, who look as colorful as their names, such as the Chinese Gliding Frog, Amazon Milk Frog, Fire-bellied Toad and Smokey Jungle Frog. Hear noisy croaks, yaps, chirps, whoops, snores and whistles. Test your frog IQ, create a chorus with recorded frog calls, perform a virtual frog dissection and more. Admission to Frogs! A Chorus of Colors is included with general admission to Great Lakes Science Center. Members receive free admission.
www.glsc.org

– Cindy Hill

By Boat, Bike or Trolley Many Ways to See CLE

Foot: Starting in May, the Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation (www.historicgateway.org) offers three free walking tours of downtown Cleveland and the nearby Warehouse District. You have the following options: You can meet at the Arcade and see the sites of the old department stores that used to be located downtown; you can meet at Constantino’s Market and walk through the Warehouse District and see how it’s been transformed into a dining and entertainment destination; or you can you meet at Settlers Landing and tour the harbor. You can also go it alone by visiting www.cityprowl.com and downloading an audio file and map that will take you on a narrated self-guided walking tour of the city.

Segway: Mondays through Saturdays as weather permits, Cleveland native Carl C. Johnson hosts narrated Segway tours of the city that cost $55-$60 per person. The hour-long tours all leave from Tower City Center, but the miles covered vary. Along the way, Johnson identifies major landmarks and discusses them in context of the city’s history. Go to www.clevelandsegwaytours.com for more information.

Trolley: For more than 25 years, the cheery red Lolly the Trolley (www.lollytrolley.com) has offered year-round tours of Cleveland that cover almost 20 miles and pass by nearly 100 points of interest. The information-packed one- and two- hour tours vary in cost and reservations are required.  Specialty tours of Cleveland bridges and of Lakeview Cemetery are also available.

Boat: Given that Cleveland sits on the shores of Lake Erie, seeing the city by boat is also a viable option. Goodtime III (goodtimeiii.com), a 1000-seat, quadruple deck luxury ship that leaves from the 9th Street Pier, offers narrated tours of the city. The Nautica Queen (nauticaqueen.com), a cruise dining ship departing from the West Bank of the Flats, affords riders bridge views and a trip down the crooked Cuyahoga River. Both offer a variety of food options as well as entertainment.

Bicycle: The City of Cleveland recently built the Bike Rack, a bike station for commuters, in a parking garage located near Quicken Loans Arena. The station can accommodate up to 50 bicycles and has showers and a small bike shop. But this is just one way Cleveland caters to cyclists. The Great Lakes Touring Company (www.bikecle.com) offers guided one- and two-hour tours as well as bicycle rentals, the nonprofit group Cleveland Bikes (www.clevelandbikes.org) sponsors neighborhood rides and tours, and local cyclist Bob Polk (bobsbiketours.com) hosts two different tours of downtown and its surrounding areas.

Visit www.positivelycleveland.com for more things to see and do in Cleveland. Follow us on twitter @positivelycleve.

 Jeff Niesel 

Free, Fun and Kid-Approved Attractions in Cleveland

Parade the Circle

Welcome to Cleveland Plus, the 22-county region that borders Lake Erie and surrounds and includes the metropolis of Cleveland, Ohio.

We are home to family favorites like the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo (home to the African Elephant Crossing), the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, University Circle (the nation’s most concentrated square mile of arts and cultural institutions) and PlayhouseSquare (second largest theater district in the country second only to Broadway).

A family vacation to Cleveland Plus costs 40-60 percent less than one to cities like New York, Philadelphia or Los Angeles –without sacrificing any of the experience! Below you’ll find a list of free, fun, kid-approved attractions in Cleveland Plus to help make your vacation one you’ll never forget.

Wade Oval Wednesdays
Take a mid-week break and enjoy live music in the heart of University Circle.  Have a picnic on Wade Oval or relax in the beer and wine garden with a great view of the stage.  The lineup includes a wide variety of music to suit everyone’s tastes.  Location: Wade Oval is the park in between The Museum of Art, The Cleveland Museum of Natural History and The Cleveland Botanical Garden, University Circle. June 13 – Aug. 29, 2012

www.universitycircle.org

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland – Learning Center & Money Museum
Ever wondered how we bought things before money existed? And, who makes our money anyhow? All these answer and more answered at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland’s Learning Center and Money Museum. The museum regularly hosts temporary exhibits exploring currency and the value of money from other times and cultures. Kids can get a look at the Money Tree where they can track counterfeit money and follow the history of money through the ages. Opened Mon. – Thurs. from 10am-2pm, the museum offers free admission and a unique tour through the Federal Reserve.

216.579.3188, www.clevelandfed.org/learningcenter/planvisit.cfm

Cleveland Police Museum
Delve into the history of Cleveland law enforcement at the Cleveland Police Museum—free of charge.  See confiscated firearms, uniforms, artifacts and more from Cleveland’s past including things from the legendary crime fighter, Eliot Ness, and the Torso Murders investigation.

216.623.5055, www.clevelandpolicemuseum.org

Stearns Homestead
Stearns Homestead is a working farm is operated by the Parma Area Historical Society as an educational and historic farm.  It features a barn complete with animals, two homes dating from the early 1900s that now serve as museums, gardens and a display of historical farm and household items.

440.845.9770

Amish Country
Share in the Amish heritage through the discovery of horse-drawn buggies, homemade family-style foods and exceptional craftsmanship in Northeast Ohio’s Amish Country.  You’ll find antique stores, craft houses, traditional Amish restaurants and excellent inns.

877.643.8824, www.visitamishcountry.com

Summer in the City Free Concert Series – The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
Many free concerts are offered this summer at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.  Check out their calendar of events of on their website for upcoming shows.

216.781.ROCK, http://rockhall.com/events/summer-sessions/

Lakewood Front Porch Series
Bring blankets, chairs, snacks and friends and have an entertaining evening in this open air theatre located on the front steps of the Lakewood Public Library. Entertainers range from jazz and indie music to early 60s Americana and folk music.

http://downtownlakewood.org/front-porch-concerts/

Lake View Cemetery
Lake View Cemetery is filled with sculpture, architecture and tributes to those who made great contributions to the area’s industrial and civic development. The interior of its Wade Memorial Chapel was designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany, including the focal point “The Flight of Souls,” a leaded glass window done in the Favrile technique. Lake View Cemetery counts J.D. Rockefeller and African American inventor Garrett Morgan among its famous residents.  And here’s a tip–on a clear day stand atop the memorial for President James A. Garfield for a fantastic view of the city.

216.421.2665, www.lakeviewcemetery.com

International Women’s Air and Space Museum
The International Women’s Air and Space Museum at Burke Lakefront Airport documents women’s past and present accomplishments and contributions to the fields of aviation and space.  A collection of memorabilia and historical artifacts preserve the memory of women aviation pioneers.

216.623.1111, www.iwasm.org

Cleveland Plus Beaches
While surfing in Ohio might sound crazy, the truth is that Cleveland Plus offers a variety of accessible (and FREE) beaches along its Lake Erie Coast with swimming, sailing, surfing and some of the best walleye, perch and bass fishing in the world. After a beach-bum weekend on Lake Erie, visitors might forget about their yearly pilgrimage to the shore. Check out some of these notable beaches:

  • Fairport Harbor Beach – Fairport Harbor Beach was made for adventure seekers. With activities ranging from kayaking, canoeing, boating and fishing, this beach offers water-related programs, festivals and events suitable for every member of the family.

440. 639.9972, http://www.lakemetroparks.com/select-park/fairport.shtml

  • Headlands Beach State Park – Forget about a trip to the shore when you can experience the Mentor Headlands, Ohio’s longest natural sand beach. The size of Headlands Beach allows plenty of room for travelers to play beach volleyball, Frisbee, cook out, sunbath and relax.

216.881.8141, http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/parks/headlnds/tabid/742/Default.aspx

  • Edgewater Beach – Fly a kite, have a picnic or take a swim. With an unmatched view of the Cleveland skyline, Edgewater Park is a popular west side beach that boasts a variety of summertime activities like swimming, boating and fishing.  Enjoy the upper level for a shaded picnic, or head to the lower level for swimming and beach access.

216.881.8141, http://www.ohiodnr.com/parks/clevelkf/tabid/721/Default.aspx

  • Huntington Beach – Known for its family-friendly environment and its commitment to cleanliness, the Huntington Reservation Beach caters to swimmers and sunbathers alike. After a day at the beach, visitors can head to the nearby Honey Hut Ice Cream Shoppe for some of Cleveland’s famous handmade ice cream.

216.351.6300, http://www.clemetparks.com

  • Lakeview Park Beach – Think: relaxation. Rich with history, adorned in rose gardens and engulfed in the natural beauty of Lake Erie, Lakeview Park Beach is the perfect respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

440.245.1193 http://www.loraincountymetroparks.com/lakeview.htm

Almost Free for the Kids ($5 and under)

Lake Farmpark
Discover more than 50 breeds of farm animals on a trip to this hands-on science center.  While here, milk a cow, take a wagon ride, stroll through gardens and enjoy animal shows and demonstrations.

Admission: adults $6, seniors (60+) $5, children (2-11) $4, under 2 free.

800.366.3276,   www.lakemetroparks.com/select-park/farmpark.shtml

Holden Arboretum
Enjoy the great outdoors all year round with more than 3,100 acres of beautiful plant collections and spectacular fall and summer gardens, beautiful colors, winter splendor, trails and picnic areas at the Holden Arboretum.  Trails offer a variety of distances and levels of difficulty.

Admission:  adults $6, seniors (60+) $5, children (6-12) $3, children 5 and under free.

440.946.4400, www.holdenarb.org

The Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage
The Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage showcases the history of Northeast Ohio’s Jewish community through artifacts, unique exhibits and interactive displays.

Admission: adults $12, seniors (60+) and students (13+ and college students) $10, children 5-11 $5.

216.593.0575, www.maltzmuseum.org

Century Village Museum
Experience more than 100 years of history as you explore the restored 1806 village of Burton at Century Village Museum.  You’ll find treasures including a cabin from 1798, vintage barns, an 1872 schoolhouse, five furnished historical homes, a jail and a country store.

Admission: adults $7, children 6-12 $5, children 5 and under free.

440.834.4012, www.geaugahistorical.org

Western Reserve Historical Society
Cleveland’s oldest cultural institution is home to a library and two museums in University Circle.  The Western Reserve Historical Society’s History Museum features a 1911 mansion and the Chisholm Halle Costume Wing.  The Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum displays nearly 200 antique, vintage and classic automobiles and aircraft.

Admission: adults $8.50, senior $7.50, veteran $6.50, children 17 and under $5.

216.721.5722, www.wrhs.org

USS Cod
Take a tour of the USS Cod, an unaltered World War II vintage submarine and the only submarine in history to perform a submarine-submarine rescue.

Admission:  adults $7; seniors, inactive/retired military and college students $6; students (K – 12) and active military with ID $4; children under 6 years and military in uniform and wives/family of active duty submariners are admitted free.

216.566.8770, www.usscod.org

Kent State University Fashion Museum
Explore the history of fashion as we know it today at the Kent State University Fashion Museum.  Find European and American gowns as well as traditional dress, celebrity dresses and nine galleries devoted to great fashion designers and artists from the 18th century to the present.

Admission:  adults $5, seniors $4, students and children (7-18) $3, children under 7 free.

330.672.3450, www.kent.edu/museum

Dunham Tavern
Built in 1824, this is Cleveland’s oldest building still standing on its original site.  It was once a stagecoach stop on the old Buffalo-Cleveland-Detroit post road, and today features an original parlor, taproom and items of early Americana including 19th century Ohio antique furniture.

Admission:  adult $3, children (3-12) $2, children under 3 are free.

216.431.1060, www.dunhamtavern.org

Stan Hywet Hall + Gardens
Frank A. Seiberling, co-founder of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, once called this 65-room country estate home. French and Italian reproduction furniture, eighteenth-century British portraits and priceless antique heirlooms make up the homes original furnishings. Lagoons, formal gardens, a greenhouse and stunning rows of silver birch trees make the outside just as inviting as the inside of this home, one of the finest examples of Tudor Revival architecture in the United States.

Admission: Adults $8, children 6 to 17 $4, ages 6 and younger free;

330.836.5533, www.stanhywet.org

Cleveland Botanical Garden
A beautiful senior getaway is the Cleveland Botanical Garden, a combination of indoor exhibits housed in a magnificent glasshouse and ten acres of diverse outdoor gardens. The spectacular Glasshouse includes two major exhibits, the Costa Rica Rainforest and the Madagascar Spiny Desert. There are also several beautiful outdoor gardens, including a rose garden and Japanese tea garden, for your exploration. The grandkids will love the Hershey’s Children’s Garden, a kid-friendly exhibit with signs and pictures at kid level and fun features, like a barn and a treehouse.

Admission: Adults $7.50, seniors 60 and older $5.50, children 3 to 12 $3, 2 and younger free

216.721.1600, www.cbgarden.org

Parade the Circle – FREE!
Be there June 9 as international and national guest artists join the Cleveland Plus’ community of artists, families, schools and community groups to parade around Wade Oval in University Circle.

The free event, which celebrates the community arts, draws more than 60,000 people every year.  The celebration incorporates the drama and artistry of colorful floats, giant puppets, bright costumes, handmade masks, stilt-walkers, dancers and musicians.

After the parade, children and adults can enjoy a bevy of free make-and-take arts and crafts projects, food and beverage. Many of the area museums throughout University Circle offer day-of discounts. Visit www.universitycircle.org for more information.

For more information visit www.positivelycleveland.com

– April Ingle

Positively Cleveland’s Tips for a Great Weekend: May 18 – 20

Visiting Cleveland this weekend? Read on for tips to make the most of your trip. For even more information visit www.positivelycleveland.com.

Here are just some of the things taking place in CLE this weekend:

  • Indians home stand
  • Opening weekend of the Horseshoe Casino Cleveland
  • Cleveland Marathon, Half Marathon, 5-K and Kid’s fun run
  • Cleveland International Tattoo
  • Cleveland International Asian Festival
  • Hessler Street Fair
  • Click here for more events.

Be the Early Bird. Start your trip off stress free. Whether you’re a spectator for the Cleveland Marathon or just a die-hard Indians fan, make sure to arrive a bit earlier than normal this weekend. Rest assured if you leave early, you won’t hit as many issues with road closures, availability of parking sports or the overall feeling of just being late. The early bird really does get the worm on this one.

You’re early. So now what? There’s plenty of things to do or see while you’re waiting! Have a photo shoot and capture some beautiful sites of the city at Voinovich Park down on the lakefront or by the Fountain of Eternal Life Statue on the Mall. On Saturday, enjoy the architecture inside the Arcade or the Soldiers and Sailors Monument. Or, get a birds-eye view of the city from the Terminal Tower Observation Deck on in the afternoon on Saturday or Sunday. Tickets are available for $5 and visitors must buy online at www.terminaltowerodeck.eventbrite.com.

Use public transportation. Avoid worrying about finding a place to park by using the Cleveland Regional Transit Authority’s (RTA) service. Cash fares for any RTA bus or rapid is $2.25 per ride. All Day Passes allow for unlimited rides on any RTA bus or rapid anywhere in Cuyahoga County, from the time of first use until 3am the next day. The cost is $5. Five-trip passes cost $11.25, but are not restricted to subsequent day use. Visitors to the Indians Game and Casino can take the Red Line from any park-and-ride station throughout the county into Downtown and Terminal Tower. Head out to the University Circle area on the Healthline. And, the Waterfront Line will be open early, leaving Tower City at 4:52am on Sunday and will depart every 30 minutes to get Marathoners to the Lakefront. For great updates follow RTA on twitter at @GCRTA. www.riderta.com

Whenever possible, walk. It’s good for your health and your wallet . . . no taxi fares and no additional charges to come and go from the hotel garage. Downtown Cleveland is incredibly walkable and most downtown hotels are within a 5-25 minute walk of the Horseshoe Casino Cleveland, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Progressive Field, The Warehouse District, East Fourth Street, PlayhouseSquare and other major attractions.

Bike it. For residents who live in closeby neighborhoods (Tremont, Ohio City, Cleveland Heights, etc.), why not just scratch traditional transportation downtown altogether and ride your bike. With the recent upswing in greener transportation, many locations downtown offer bike parking. Also considering utilizing safe, secure bike parking at the Cleveland Bike Rack located across from Quicken Loans Arena. www.clevelandbikerack.com

Help is here. Need directions? Want to make advance reservations at a restaurant? Can’t decide what to do next. This weekend, Positively Cleveland will open its doors to the tens of thousands of visitors coming to downtown Cleveland.  Make sure to stop in and get some helpful advice from our Concierge Ambassadors.

Your guide. While in the Cleveland Plus Visitors Center, makes sure to grab an Official Visitors Guide. This publication is your guide to Cleveland. From maps and attraction listings to articles and helpful hints, this guide will take your trip from great…to fantastic.

Consider rockin’ the suburbs. So, your first inclination is to stay downtown, in the heart of it all. But, visitors can head 10-20 minutes outside of the city for free parking, an abundance of kid-friendly restaurants and, quite often, lower rates.  This is especially helpful this weekend, as downtown hotels are sold out.

Ride the “Fatty” wagon. Here’s a money-saving idea that is also good for the environment. Grab a brew at Great Lakes Brewing Company (GLBC) before an Indians game. Park for free (or for a minimal fee) in Ohio City and catch the GLBC “fatty” wagon, run on fryer grease, over to the ballpark. One dollar ($1) roundtrip gets you to and from the game where cheap seats can cost you less than ten bucks. www.greatlakesbrewing.com

Mobile hospitality. Positively Cleveland has a unique location-based mobile website that matches you with nearby restaurants, attractions and hotels.  Use it and you’ll never wonder, “Where can I get a bite to eat around here?” www.cleplus.mobi 

Mobile culture. University Circle Inc. has launched an interactive University Circle App for iPhone.  This FREE app provides instant, up-to-date information, events, photos, and maps on hundreds of locations in University Circle, including museums and institutions, restaurants, galleries, schools, entertainment, and shopping venues.  So, for those folks in town for the Hessler Street Fair or the Case Western Reserve graduation, you can check out all the great museum in University Circle this weekend, too! www.universitycircle.org/iphone-app

Twitter-ific. Connect with many of the local attractions and events on social media to get up-to-the-minute updates on all that’s happening including any additional road closures, great places to dine, scores, etc.  Follow @PositivelyCleve, @HorseshoeCLE, @Indians, @CLEAsianFest and @clevemarathon.

Dollars make sense. It’s always best to leave home with about $20 in cash for parking, valet tips and other miscellaneous travel expenses that only take cash. It’ll save you the time of searching for an ATM machine.

It’s gonna be a scorcher. The temps are expected to shoot up into the mid-80s this weekend. That said, makes sure to bring your sunscreen! And, for those heading to the Indians game, Progressive Field now allows folks to bring in one bottle of water (sealed). Stay healthy. Stay happy. Stay hydrated. www.indians.com

Be patient. Especially Sunday morning after the marathon events start to wind down (around 9am) be aware that usual breakfast spots may require a bit of a wait. Some places to grab a bit to eat are Grumpy’s Café or Lucky’s Café in Tremont, the Tremont Tap House, or Latitude 41 in Detroit Shoreway do a great job of getting diners in and out quickly, without sacrificing the quality of service or food. A lot of the downtown restaurants open at 11am or noon for lunch during the weekends.

Gamble at the new Horseshoe Casino Cleveland, and then park free.  Guests who gamble at the Horseshoe Casino will be able to park downtown for free. To be eligible for 24 hours of free parking near the casino, you have to become a Total Rewards member and then play for 30 minutes earning at least 15 “Tier Credits.” http://www.caesars.com/casinos/horseshoe-cleveland/hotel-casino/property-home.shtml

Visit the Cleveland Marathon website for information.  You can pre-plan running routes, watch spots and road closures through comprehensive website for the Cleveland Marathon. The site is chock-full of lists on the best spectator spots, route entertainment and neighborhood parties taking place. The RTA opens the Waterfront Line on Sunday , which exits at Browns stadium. www.clevelandmarathon.com 

Ask Downtown Cleveland Safety Ambassadors for help or safety or direction. Safety Ambassadors patrol downtown as a positive influence for safety, acting as the eyes and ears for police. Ambassadors also carry two-way radios to reach one of our Peace Officers — off-duty Cleveland Police officers who can provide supplementary security.  They are easy to spot with their bright yellow shirts. www.downtownclevelandalliance.com/ambassadors.aspx

Make reservations at restaurants on OpenTable or call ahead nowThe restaurants will be busy this weekend, so plan ahead by reserving your table online through Open Table.  Look through the Positively Cleveland’s website to find dining options and make your reservations today.  www.opentable.com

Plan, plan, plan. Visit PositivelyCleveland.com to get started planning your trip.

Safe travels!

– Positively Cleveland

“God of Carnage” at Dobama Theatre

Image courtesy of http://www.dobama.org

God of Carnage, the 2009 Tony Award winner for Best Play and 2009 Olivier Award winner for Best New Play, is now playing at Dobama Theatre in Cleveland Heights.  A humorous and all-to-real look at modern day suburban life, God of Carnage offers a delightful romp at the theatre.

Written by French playwright Yasmina Reza, and translated by Christopher Hampton, God of Carnage presents a “slice of life” to which many parents can relate.  Alan and Annette Raleigh visit Michael and Veronica Novak to discuss an altercation that has occurred between their sons at a community park.  Soon the altercation transfers from the sons and the park to the parents and the Novak’s living room, resulting in trivial chaos.  God of Carnage provides for a thoroughly entertaining night at the theatre with a great deal of bickering and a hell of a lot of laughs.  Theatre goers haven’t had this much fun in someone’s living room since Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Not only is God of Carnage a well written play, which has enjoyed much success in its original French and English-translated incarnations, but this rendition is a very well acted production, too.  Scott Miller and Derdriu Ring play the more “corporate-minded” Raleighs while John Hedges and Tracee Patterson give us the more “grounded” Novaks.  In their respective roles, all four actors take a rather simple everyday situation (after all, what child hasn’t been in a playground fight at some point in his life?) and take it to new heights.  They all present the epitome of a “crazy” and irrational parent while still remaining completely believable.

Joel Hammer, Dobama’s Artistic Director, is the director of this production.  I had seen Mr. Hammer’s wonderful performance in Dobama’s stellar production of Conor McPherson’s The Seafarer.  He is an excellent actor, but now that I have seen his work as a director, it is quite obvious that he is a multi-talented force in Cleveland’s theatre scene.

The black box space where Dobama Theatre is located is perfect for the edgy and non-conventional productions that the company offers.  It is a very warm and inviting space that provides for a very intimate theatrical experience.  I had not seen a Dobama Theatre production until last December when I attended The Seafarer.  And following that and God of Carnage, I realize that I have been missing out!  God of Carnage runs through May 13.

Dobama Theatre is located in the Lee Road Branch of the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Library at 2340 Lee Road in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.  Convenient, free on-site parking is available.  For more information on Dobama Theatre or God of Carnage, please visit the theatre’s website at www.Dobama.org.

- Christopher S. Musselman

“In The Next Room” presented by Cleveland Play House

Cleveland Play House presents one of the most ambitious productions of the year.  In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play, CPH’s last main stage production for the 2011-2012 season, is now playing in the Second Stage theatre at PlayhouseSquare.  In the Next Room also serves as the anchor production for this year’s New Ground Theatre Festival (formerly FusionFest)

Written by playwright Sarah Ruhl, and directed by Laura Kepley, CPH’s associate artistic director, In the Next Room is a very powerful play of great humor, great emotion, and great intellect.  It is 1880’s America, in a prosperous town near New York City, where a new “medical instrument” is being used to treat female hysteria.  Sabrina Daldry arrives, with her husband, to the home of Dr. and Mrs. Givings for treatment.  Over the course of the play, Mrs. Daldry’s condition improves dramatically, in many senses of the word.  But this “medical instrument” also evolves into something much more… something that speaks to a woman’s heart, not just to the “hysteria” of her mind.

Read More…

2012-2013 Broadway Series at PlayhouseSquare

The 2012-2013 KeyBank Broadway Series at PlayhouseSquare has been announced. As always, PlayhouseSquare will offer some of the very best shows from the Broadway stage for theatre patrons of all ages.

The spectacular 2012-2013 KeyBank Broadway Series includes:

Anything Goes: Winner of the 2011 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical. Cole Porter’s classic and madcap voyage on the high seas. October 2-14, 2012 in the Palace Theatre.

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast: The story of Belle and her beastly prince, based upon Disney’s 1991 animated classic. November 6-18, 2012 in the Palace Theatre.

Pricilla, Queen of the Desert: Put on your platform heels! Produced by the Divine Miss M, herself, Bette Midler brings us this fun and colorful musical, based upon the 1994 Australian film and featuring popular hits of the 70’s and 80’s. January 15-27, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

Sister Act: Whoopi Goldberg is the producer of this high-spirited musical, based upon the 1992 comedy film in which she starred. March 5-17, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

War Horse: Winner of the 2011 Tony Award for Best Play. The touching story of a boy’s search for his horse during the turmoil of World War I. April 9-21, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

Guys and Dolls: Produced by Cleveland’s very own Great Lakes Theater, a resident company of PlayhouseSquare, Guys and Dolls is a Frank Loesser classic. May 1 – June 23, 2013 in the Hanna Theatre.

The Book of Mormon: Winner of the 2011 Tony Award for Best Musical. A raucous new musical from the creators of television’s South Park. June 18 – July 7, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

And the 2012-2013 U.S. Bank Star Performance Series includes:

Les Misérables: The spectacular 25th Anniversary production of theatre’s longest-running musical, still playing in London’s West End for nearly 27 years. February 5-10, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

Blue Man Group: The blue men return! If you did not catch them during last season’s Broadway Series, now is your chance. February 12-17, 2013 in the Palace Theatre.

More shows will be added to the U.S. Bank Star Performance Series, at a later date. And with PlayhouseSquare’s “Swap-a-Show” program, if you do not care for one of the shows in the KeyBank Broadway Series, you can “swap” that show with other eligible shows, including those in the U.S. Bank Star Performance Series.

And do not forget all the great shows at Cleveland Play House and Great Lakes Theater! Both are resident companies of PlayhouseSquare, and both have announced their 2012-2013 show schedules. And as always, CPH and GLT will offer another great line-up for the 2012-2013 theatre season.

Cleveland Play House presents Lombardi (September 14 – October 7), The Whipping Man (November 2-25), A Carol for Cleveland (November 30 – December 23), Bell, Book and Candle (January 11 – February 3), The Devil’s Music: The Life and Blues of Bessie Smith (February 15 – March 10), Good  People (March 22 – April 14) and Rich Girl (April 12 – May 5).

Great Lakes Theater presents Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale (September 28 – November 4) in repertory with Molière’s The Imaginary Invalid (October 5 – November 3), the annual holiday production of Dicken’s A Christmas Carol (November 30 – December 23), Noël Coward’s Blithe Spirit (February 22 – March 10), Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing (March 29 – April 14) and Frank Loesser’s Guys and Dolls (May 1–19).

With ten theatres, PlayhouseSquare is the nation’s second largest performing arts center, after Lincoln Center in New York. The five oldest theatres (the Allen, Hanna, Ohio, Palace, and State) date back to 1921-1922, and all have been gloriously restored.

The other theatres are the 14th Street Theatre, the Allen Second Stage, the Allen (Helen Rosenfeld Lewis Bialosky) Lab Theatre, Kennedy’s Cabaret and the Westfield Insurance Studio Theatre, located in the Idea Center. With the addition of Cleveland Play House this season, Cleveland’s Theatre District has become even busier and more vibrant than ever.

For more information about the KeyBank Broadway Series, the U.S. Bank Star Performance Series, or PlayhouseSquare, in general, please visit www.PlayhouseSquare.org. Information on the Cleveland Play House can be found at www.ClevelandPlayHouse.com, and Great Lakes Theater’s website is www.GreatLakesTheater.org.

- Christopher S. Musselman

80th Annual Bach Festival at Baldwin Wallace College

The Annual Bach Festival at Baldwin-Wallace College is the oldest collegiate Bach Festival in the nation. In its 80th year, the Bach Festival will take place April 13-15, 2012. Be sure to take in a performance at this premiere Ohio music festival.

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist and violinist. Although Bach was highly regarded as an organist during his lifetime, it was not until the early 19th Century that he became recognized as a great composer. He is now known as one of the principal composers of the Baroque style. And many consider him to be among the greatest composers to ever have lived.

The Riemenschneider Bach Institute is a world-renowned Bach Center, named for Albert and Selma Riemenschneider. In 1932, Albert, a music educator, and his wife founded the Bach Festival. Their mission was “to enrich the lives of Northeast Ohio residents by bringing the world’s greatest Bach soloists to the stage of Baldwin-Wallace College, while offering the school’s Conservatory students in voice and instruments an unparalleled opportunity to experience the highest performance standards of their day” (Baldwin-Wallace College website). Eighty years later, the festival continues.

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Vote for Cleveland!

It’s a close battle between Cleveland and Kansas City!

Cleveland is in the running to host the 2012 Social Media Tourism Symposium. Today, from noon to 11:59pm, Cleveland will go head-to-head against Kansas City, Missouri in a bracket-style competition to get this social media conference to Cleveland Nov. 7 – 9.

Now in its third year, the Social Media Tourism Symposium is an annual conference of more than 200 attendees that brings together destination marketing organizations, hotels, resorts, attractions and other tourism related entities to share ideas and learn more about how social media is effecting the promotion of the travel industry. The conference is unique in that potential attendees have a voice in everything – from the location to the session topics and presenters.

Please help us to make it to the Elite Eight by visiting www.facebook.com/SoMeTourism to cast your vote for Cleveland! Then encourage everyone you know to vote by sharing the link on your social networks and with family, friends, coworkers and employees.

To host this event would be a HUGE win for Cleveland and our city as a travel destination. Together we can make it happen!


– Positively Cleveland

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