Latest News

Appletree Books event celebrates Greater Cleveland neighborhoods

Appletree Books will host a special event on Friday, July 8, featuring four writers who have contributed to a new book about Greater Cleveland—Cleveland Neighborhood Guidebook. Belt Publishing, a Cleveland company that also publishes Belt Magazine, produced the book.

The four writers who will be taking part in the event are Brad Masi, Kathrine Morris, Greggor Mattson and Maryann De Julio.

Masi, who lives in Cleveland Heights, contributed a chapter called “Chasing the Ghosts of Coventry Village,” exploring the many changes that have taken place in the Coventry neighborhood over the years. He describes Dugway Brook as a “historic stream that has disappeared underground, locked away in concrete culverts beneath the hapless footfalls of the denizens above.” He then goes on to write about Harvey Pekar and poet d.a. levy. “Many writers, poets, artists, publishers and graphic novelists find their home here, and many more were hatched here before their winged migration to other territories,” Masi writes.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:34 AM, 06.28.2016

Latest News Releases

- City of Cleveland Heights, June 27, 2016 Read More
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Wheels for the World hosts used wheelchair drive Aug. 16
- Non-Profit & Groups, June 20, 2016 Read More
Heights High student among five Cleveland teens chosen as Bank of America summer intern
- Bank of America, June 16, 2016 Read More
Sewer District Dye-Testing Sewers in Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights
- Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, June 9, 2016 Read More

View more news releases

Expanded Shawn Paul Salon finds new home in Rockefeller Building

The team at Shawn Paul Salon. 

The Shawn Paul Salon has found a new home in the Mayfield Lee Business District’s Heights Rockefeller Building and is ready to grow. The salon, currently located in the Cedar Lee Business District is not only expanding its space, but also adding services, and using its new space to foster creativity, social engagement, and connectivity opportunities.  

The salon first opened its doors in the fall of 2011. Since its inaugural haircut, the salon has grown rapidly, and has been voted Best Cleveland Heights Salon and has received several Best Stylist awards.

The salon’s team of master stylists has been crucial to its success. “I am the luckiest guy alive," said owner Shawn Paul Gustafson. "I get to work with the craziest humans ever (my team), laugh all day long, and know that at the end of the day we all had fun. We are not for everyone, and that’s okay. We can get a bit too loud, openly share our political thoughts, and are obsessed with NPR. That being said, a lot of people seem to like our brand of crazy.”

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 9:27 AM, 06.28.2016

Win tickets to GroundWorks DanceTheater's performance at Cain Park

Dancers perform Carl Orff's Carmina Burana. Photo credit: Mark Horning.

GroundWorks DanceTheater presents Carmina Burana at Cain Park's Alma Theater on July 15 and 16 at 7 p.m. and July 17 at 2 p.m. for their 2016 Summer Dance Series. GroundWorks will feature an expanded cast in an adaptation of Carl Orff's timeless classic. The program will also include a world premiere work by award-winning New York choreographer Adam Barruch. For ticket information, visit or call 216-751-0088.  

The local dance company is sponsoring a social media ticket giveaway contest on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Contestants are encouraged to share their most memorable dance experience using the hashtags listed below to be eligible to win a pair of free tickets to the Cain Park performance. Winners will be selected and notified on July 1. Learn more about the performances here:

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Volume 9, Issue 8, Posted 3:09 PM, 06.27.2016

Heights Arts hosts flute and guitar concert on July 9

Robert Gruca and Linda White are the Gruca White Ensemble.

Classical guitarist Robert Gruca and flutist Linda White will present a diverse program of music based on folk styles from Eastern Europe and Japan on Saturday, July 9, at 7 p.m., in the Heights Arts gallery, 2175 Lee Road in Cleveland Heights, just south of the Cedar Lee Theatre.

The musicians will perform works by Serbian composer Dusan Bogdanovic, Hungarian Bela Bartok, and Masamitu Takahashi from Japan, as well as klezmer music written by American Carl Dimow. The family-friendly concert is open to the public, with free-will donations accepted to support Heights Arts's public music programs. A reception with refreshments follows the performance.

The Gruca White Ensemble was formed in 2013 as part of The Music Settlement’s Centennial Celebration, and became an Ensemble in Residence for the vibrant Cleveland community music school the following year.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:43 AM, 06.28.2016

Support Cedar Lee businesses during construction

I hope Cleveland Heights residents will join me in supporting our Cedar Lee businesses over the next few months. While the new streetscape construction is exciting, and will create a more attractive, safe and inviting district, construction activities will certainly disrupt “business as usual.” It will be dusty and traffic may be inconvenienced. However, I am confident the result will be worth it for our city.

Let’s work together to ensure the businesses that have continually invested in one of our best mixed-use districts are healthy when the ribbon is cut on the new street. Make sure to visit the Cedar Lee website ( to see where parking is available, and consider using back streets into the district to minimize frustration and traffic. Please be patient.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 9:46 AM, 06.28.2016

University Heights concert series continues in July

University Heights Symphonic Band will wrap up the series with a performance on July 28.

University Heights continues its free summer concert series on Thursday evenings on the Hamlin Quad at John Carroll University (between Dolan Science Center and the Grasselli Clock Tower).

The month of July features the Stratophonics (rock, soul, big band, and today’s music) on July 7; WIXY 1260 Band (music of the 1960s and '70s) and an ice cream social on July 14; Sloppy Joe’s (classic rock, blues, R&B hits) on July 21; and the University Heights Symphonic Band and another ice cream social on July 28.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:19 AM, 06.28.2016

Inn on Coventry celebrates 35 years of business

Mary Haley and Debra Duirk, owners of the Inn on Coventry. [Photo courtesy Debra Duirk.]

The Inn on Coventry is celebrating its 35th anniversary this summer, and its owners, Debra Duirk and Mary Haley, are planning some special events to celebrate.

The restaurant opened on July 27, 1981. This year, July 27 is “Throwback Wednesday” at the Inn; coffee will be free (with purchase of food), and buttermilk pancakes will be available for $1 each. In addition, starting June 20, the Inn will be giving raffle tickets to diners; prizes include a mountain bike decorated with a Coca-Cola logo, and certificates good for free coffee for a year and free breakfast specials for a month. The restaurant also plans to offer 35th-anniversary Inn on Coventry T-shirts and sweatshirts as part of the raffle, and for purchase. The raffle drawing will be held on July 27.

“I really just want to thank everyone for supporting us over the last 35 years,” said Duirk. “We really just want to show our appreciation, and that’s why we are having the specials and the raffle.”

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:01 AM, 06.21.2016

Mobile food pantry distributes healthy produce this summer

Free produce including fresh fruits and vegetables are given out the first Friday of each month at Friends Fellowship Bible Church, 2490 Lee Blvd., Cleveland Heights, in the back parking lot of the Rockefeller Pointe Building.

Sponsored by the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, this mobile food pantry is a truck full of food that is brought to a central location where individuals can pick up items as they would from a regular food pantry. No proof of income, family size or residency is required. Mobile pantries distribute the healthiest and most nutritious foods available from the food bank.

Interested individuals in need should bring a valid ID and bags or boxes to transport produce and groceries. The next distribution will be on Friday, July 1 from 5–7 p.m

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 2:31 PM, 06.20.2016

Abstract drawings on view at Heights Arts

"Fleeting" (detail), Erik Neff. Image courtesy the artist.

An exhibition of abstract drawings by Northeast Ohio artist Erik Neff opens Friday, June 24, with a public reception from 6 to 9 p.m. in the spotlight gallery space at Heights Arts.

Working on a variety of surfaces such as plaster, wood, paper and slate, Neff creates a dialogue, or narrative, between the marks and shapes of an image through a "back and forth" process of scraping, gouging and applying color pigments.

Neff has exhibited in galleries and museums in Cleveland, Youngstown, New York and Chicago, including MOCA Cleveland, SPACES gallery, and Elizabeth Harris Gallery. He lives and works in Newbury, Ohio.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 12:34 PM, 06.20.2016

Literacy grant gives boost to summer reading program

Children can read with Dr. Barkley, a certified therapy dog.

With the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library summer reading program already in full swing, library staff learned in early June that the Dollar General Literacy Foundation had awarded the library a $2,000 Summer Reading Grant to support early literacy.

So far, $800 has been spent to buy books that will be given away when children sign up for summer reading. The grant will also support summer reading programming, including Books and Barks, where children can sign up to read with a certified therapy dog, Dr. Barkley, at the Noble Neighborhood Library on July 18 and Aug. 15.

“We are thrilled to have received this funding for our summer reading program, as it will provide more incentives for children who are new and emerging readers,” said Beth Hatch, special projects manager for Heights Libraries, who applied for the grant.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:51 AM, 06.21.2016

Cleveland leadership program seeks applicants for 2016

Greg Bell

Photo courtesy of Maria Kaiser.

In 2006, the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation, along with former Cleveland Mayor Michael White, established a leadership training program for engaged neighborhood leaders. The Neighborhood Leadership Development Program (NLDP) is a free, 15–session community engagement training program for residents of Cleveland and its inner–ring suburbs, who are working on projects within the City of Cleveland and who are determined to make a positive impact on their communities. After the application process, 20 committed individuals are chosen for the program year. NLDP participants and graduates have many interests and are working on a wide variety of issues to improve life in their communities.

Greg Bell of Washington Boulevard in Cleveland Heights, and a recent NLDP graduate, is one such person. 

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 1:29 PM, 06.20.2016

Cedar Lee finishes fourth in America's Main Streets contest

Cedar Lee Theatre, an independent movie theater, is a long-time anchor business in the Cedar Lee Business District.

On June 3, Independent We Stand—an organization that supports independently owned and socially responsible businesses, and promotes the importance, and benefits, of “buying local”—announced that downtown Lynden, Wash., was the grand-prize winner of its America's Main Streets 2016 contest. According to Tara Mazzarella, a representative of Independent We Stand, the Cedar Lee Business District ranked an impressive fourth among the top 10 semifinalists in the national online voting competition that recognizes the important role that main street commercial districts play in the long-term success of communities.

In March, FutureHeights nominated Cedar Lee for the contest, and launched a campaign to encourage residents and others to vote online every 24 hours for the district—named one of 25 quarterfinalists from across the country—through April 24.

“This year provided a great opportunity to nominate Cedar Lee because of the $3.3 million Lee Road streetscape improvements that broke ground in May,” said Deanna Bremer Fisher, executive director of FutureHeights. “Additional funding could have helped enhance the area further, which is now undergoing planned improvements for pedestrians and bicyclists, with new crosswalks, lighting and amenities, such as bicycle repair stations. During this construction phase, it’s especially important that our community continue to patronize these local businesses."

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 11:21 AM, 06.14.2016

Cedar Fairmount plans free summer concerts and annual festival

Riding the Euclid Beach Rocket Car at the 2015 Cedar Fairmount Summer Festival.

The Cedar Fairmount Special Improvement District (CFSID) has announced special programs planned for this summer. They include two free concerts, and the annual Summer Festival.

Both concerts will be held on the green west of Nighttown, 7–9 p.m., with the first planned for Thursday, June 16, and the second set for Thursday, July 21.

Cedar Fairmount restaurants will offer takeout food that attendees can eat on the green while watching the show. In case of inclement weather, the concerts will move inside to Nighttown.

On June 16, Moises Borges and Kenny Davis will perform. A native of Brazil, singer and guitarist Borges performs in the bossa nova tradition, interpreting classics by Jobin, Gilberto and others.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 10:31 AM, 06.14.2016

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS / Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education meeting highlights [online 6-7-2016]

JUNE 7, 2016

  • Awards and recognitions
  • Public comments
  • Strategic Plan Goal 1
  • English textbook
  • Construction change orders
  • Playground improvement
  • Special education transportation
  • Donations
  • Finance
  • Board president’s report  
  • Resolution to state board of education

All board members were present.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 6:38 PM, 06.19.2016

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS – Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education meeting highlights [online 5-10-2016]

MAY 10, 2016

All board members were present.

Middle school programming

The board heard a presentation on the master facilities education programming for middle school planning. Five goals of the strategic plan centered on the district mission statement: student outcomes; educational approaches; parents and community; valued professionals and a culture of excellence; and operational resources. School visits and conference calls were made to the Bedford, Fairview, Plain Local, Shaker Heights, Solon, South Euclid, Wadsworth and Westlake school districts, as the board is considering a fifth–six grade and seventh–eighth grade middle school structure for Monticello and Roxboro middle schools. The other districts have this structure, which the district can evaluate.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 9:28 AM, 06.19.2016

LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS / Cleveland Heights – University Heights Public Library Board meeting highlights [online 5-16-2016]

MAY 16, 2016

  • Master Gardeners of Cuyahoga County awards grants
  • Successful MegaSale
  • Bookmobile for University Heights Library renovation
  • Public Library Fund (PLF) distribution
  • April public service report highlights

Ron Holland, vice president, and Susan Beatty, board member, were absent.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 8:33 AM, 06.19.2016

Pioneering woman rabbi part of weekend honoring retiring Adler

It’s not often that one sees the words “Orthodox rabbi” and “woman” in the same sentence. June 16–18, Beth El-The Heights Synagogue (BETHS) will host Rabba Rahel Berkovits, who was recently ordained—along with three other women—at the Jerusalem Orthodox center Har’el.

Berkovits will be participating in a celebratory weekend in honor of Rabbi Moshe Adler, who is retiring as rabbi of BETHS after 17 years. Berkovits is the granddaughter of Rabbi Eliezer Berkovits z”l, who was Adler’s teacher and mentor.

The weekend will kick off with a lecture and dessert reception on Thursday June 16, 7 p.m., at the Siegal Lifelong Learning facility, 26500 Shaker Blvd., where Berkovits will speak on “Darkhei Shalom: The Path to Building Community.” For more information, and to register, visit, or call 216-368-2091.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 4:25 PM, 06.12.2016

Dorsey & Company makes changes to enhance its expertise

Peter Lawson Jones

Dorsey & Company, a marketing strategy and consulting firm in Cleveland Heights, has enhanced its expertise with the addition of a new strategic partner and by moving a senior associate into the role of managing director.

Peter Lawson Jones and Dorsey have just entered into a strategic partnership. “Peter brings additional depth in the government and nonprofit space that can help us to more effectively solve an even wider array of competitive and marketing issues that clients in these sectors face more and more today,” said Julius C. Dorsey Jr., president of Dorsey & Company. “With his counsel and participation in engagements of such high consequence, I know we’ll be in an even better position to provide a higher level of satisfaction to our clients across many industries.”

A seasoned public servant, Harvard-educated Jones previously served for nine years as a member of the Board of Cuyahoga County Commissioners—and served as its president for three of those years. He also served two and one-half terms in the Ohio House of Representatives, and was formerly vice mayor and councilman in the City of Shaker Heights.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 6:32 PM, 06.06.2016

Children's book author and illustrator visits Pinwheel Kids on June 4

Lindsay Ward's latest book is all about "three."

On June 4, Cleveland author Lindsay Ward returns to Pinwheel Kids, at 3469 Fairmount Blvd., with her sixth and latest book, The Importance of Being 3. As parents know, age 3 is a very big year. Ward’s book follows three friends as they learn new things in threes—from triangles to tricycles.

According to Ward, "The idea for this book came from a project I was given while I was applying to graduate school. We were given three prompts, one of which was actually the number three. Although The Importance of Being 3 is different from my original concept, I would never have created the book had it not been for that initial idea. From there the book developed into the concept of what it’s like to be a certain age, the type of milestones associated with that age, as well as the challenges. I’ve always been interested in patterns, and loved the idea of merging being 3-years-old and things that come in threes."

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 12:58 PM, 05.31.2016

Three CH-UH schools among first recipients of Momentum Award

Fairfax Elementary School students.

The Ohio State Board of Education has named Fairfax Elementary School, Monticello Middle School and Roxboro Middle School as recipients of its new Momentum Award.

The award recognizes those [schools] with all A’s on value-added measures from their 2014–15 Ohio School Report Cards, exceeding expectations for student growth for the year.

This is the first year the Ohio State Board of Education has granted the award, making the three Cleveland Heights-University Heights schools among its inaugural class of recipients. This year, 165 Ohio schools received the Momentum Award.

“We are very excited that Fairfax, Monticello and Roxboro Middle are among the first to win this award,” said Talisa Dixon, CH-UH City School District superintendent.

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 9:37 AM, 06.02.2016

Support transit in Cleveland Heights

The Cleveland Heights mayor and City Council have sent a letter to the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) pointing out deficiencies in transit service for Cleveland Heights and other eastside communities, and noting how proposed cuts in service will further exacerbate deficiencies (see below).

It could be helpful if Cleveland Heights residents sent endorsements of this letter to RTA General Manager Joseph Calabrese ( and GCRTA board members prior to June 7. The RTA board is due to vote on proposed cuts at a special meeting on that date.

Here is a link to a website that provides RTA board members’ e-mail addresses: Please note that RTA lacks funds to continue operations at current levels so it must make some cuts, but the problems go beyond that. 

Thank you for your support.

Here is the letter CH City Council sent, which clearly explains the issues:

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 1:14 PM, 05.30.2016

CH issues RFQ/RFP for Top of the Hill site

Top of the Hill development site, which also includes Edwards Road, is shown in blue. Other city-owned properties that could be included in development plans are shown in yellow.

In April, the City of Cleveland Heights issued a request for qualification/proposals (RFQ/RFP) for development of the city-owned Top of the Hill property. The site is on the western edge of the Cedar Fairmount Business District and is convenient to University Circle, Greater Cleveland's second-largest employment hub. The city asked prospective developers to submit their qualifications and proposed visions for the site. Because input from the city and the public will help shape the final development plan, conceptual drawings or renderings were not required.

The 3.9-acre site currently comprises a 225-space parking lot and some vacant land. Developers were also invited to consider incorporating any of eight other nearby, but noncontiguous, city properties into their proposals. Some of the other parcels, which cover under two acres in total, are used for parking. Any new development would be required to satisfy its own parking needs and replace any lost parking.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:59 AM, 05.30.2016

Gas line replacement project to last years

Heavy machinery, shown here on Coleridge Road, is being used to replace gas lines throughout Cleveland Heights.

Cleveland Heights residents can expect to deal with torn-up sidewalks and roads for several more years, as Dominion East Ohio replaces old gas lines with newer, more durable ones.

The pipeline infrastructure replacement program, launched in 2008, is a $4 billion project expected to last for 25 years. The utility will replace 5,500 miles of pipe within its 22,000-mile system.

According to Alex Mannarino, the Cleveland Heights director of public works, the Dominion project started in Cleveland Heights in 2010, with work on Euclid Heights Boulevard, Taylor Road and a few other streets. Mannarino said that many of the gas lines being replaced are more than 100 years old.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:54 AM, 05.30.2016

Coventry lines up Summer Series

Free Bike Tune-Up Day takes place June 4.

The Coventry Village Summer Series returns with a packed schedule of free weekly fun, including outdoor movies and yoga classes, live music, special events and community drum circles.

The series kicks off on Saturday, June 4, with Free Bike Tune-Up Day in Pekar Park Courtyard, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Hirobel, a Cleveland Heights company producing high-performance bicycle components, will offer free bike inspections and repairs. All donations from the event will benefit the Heights Bicycle Coalition. Bring your bicycle early, as this event is first-come, first-served.  

The Coventry Village Sidewalk Sale and Pop-Up Pinball Party will be held on Saturday, June 25, noon to 5 p.m. Stroll through the neighborhood and enjoy great deals, as well as free-to-play pinball machines on the sidewalks. Pinball wizards from the Cleveland Pinball League will provide playing tips and award prizes. During the event, those 18 and older can step into the Coventry Cash Cube, a blowing machine filled with Coventry Cash, to be used at participating Coventry merchants on June 25. The day will also feature live music and a beer garden.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:30 AM, 05.31.2016

'To the Orchard' premieres at Dobama

Playwrights Local 4181 announces the world premiere of Cleveland-based writer Les Hunter’s “To the Orchard.” Directed by Dale Heinen, the play ran through June 5 at Waterloo Arts in North Collinwood, and from June 10–12 at Dobama Theatre. This is the first full production for Playwrights Local, a 501(c)3 company whose recent presentations have included the 2015 Cleveland Playwrights Festival.

In “To the Orchard,” college student Rachel Bergman reveals her sexual identity to her Orthodox Jewish father, who is struggling with his own secret. In coming to terms with each other—and themselves—the pair must reconcile the conflicting pulls of tradition and individual desire. The play takes place in Brooklyn in the recent past, but incorporates dreamlike visits to turn-of-the-century England and the lost Jewish Eastern Europe. The spirits of Robert Plant and Virginia Woolf add a touch of magic realism to this intimate work about making mistakes, coming clean, and the power of history and family.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:46 PM, 05.31.2016

Western Reserve Chorale performs operas and operettas on June 5

The Western Reserve Chorale (WRC), a community chorus of approximately 100 singers based in Cleveland Heights, will present the final concert of its 2015–16 season. Of Operas and Operettas provides an opportunity to hear some of the dynamic literature from these genres.

Accompanied by Joanne Poderis, and joined by soprano Natasha Ospina Simmons, WRC will present music from Verdi's Il TrovatoreAida and Nabucco, Wagner's Lohengrin and Tannhauser, Leoncavallo's Pagliacci, Purcell's Dido and Aeneus, Bizet's Carmen and others. The ensemble also will present some lighter fare from the world of operettas, including great chorus moments composed by Bernstein, Gilbert & Sullivan and Strauss.

The concert will take place at 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 5, at Cedar Hill Baptist Church, 12601 Cedar Road in Cleveland Heights. No tickets are necessary; the concert is open to the public with free-will donations accepted. There is ample free parking available, and the church is handicapped-accessible. There will be a reception immediately following the concert.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:22 PM, 05.31.2016

Canterra Musica performs on June 5

Canterra Musica

Arts in the Cathedral presents Canterra Musica at Church of the Saviour on Sunday, June 5, at 3:30 p.m. A free-will offering will be taken.

Canterra Musica is the most advanced treble choir of the Oberlin Choristers. Founded in 1991, Oberlin Choristers provides Northeast Ohio children and teenagers with an exceptional choral education. Singers in kindergarten through 12th grade are taught in five separate ensembles by master teachers who specialize in teaching healthy vocal production, music literacy and artistic expression. 

Canterra Musica, comprising auditioned singers in seventh- to 12th-grades, has traveled each year since 1995, singing in world-class venues, including the Sydney Opera House, Australia; St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Ireland; Chartres Cathedral, France; and Carnegie Hall, New York. The singers have participated in numerous festivals, honor choirs, and community events in collaboration with Oberlin College Opera Theatre, Cleveland Opera, Oberlin Summer Theatre Festival, and, most recently, as the guest choir for the world tour of Video Games Live. This summer the choir will perform in Philadelphia, Princeton, and Carnegie Hall. To find out more, visit

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:28 PM, 05.31.2016

Spring show features Heights artists

The work of Cleveland Heights and University Heights artists will be part of Hillcrest Art Club’s annual spring show, June 5–30.

The show will take place at the Beachwood Library, 25501 Shaker Blvd., and features an opening reception on Sunday, June 5, 2–4 p.m. Light refreshments will be served, and visitors will have a chance to meet the artists.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:40 PM, 05.31.2016

Heights Arts celebrates glass artists

A work in glass by Brent Kee Young.

The Cleveland Institute of Art (CIA) has been instrumental in the careers of many visual artists and designers who make their careers through their work. They can be found making creative contributions throughout the country. Among them is a cadre of artists working in glass based here in Northeast Ohio, including Carrie Battista, Robert Coby, Scott Goss, Earl O. James, Brent Marshall, Shawn Messenger, Michael Mikula, Marc Petrovic, Kari Russell-Pool, Mark Sudduth and Linda Zmina.

Refraction: Glass Art through the Cleveland Institute of Art and Brent Kee Young, which opens on June 10, at Heights Arts, gathers works by these artists who studied at CIA during Brent Kee Young's tenure as professor and head of the glass department. The word "refraction" is loosely defined as "the change in direction of a propagating wave, such as light or sound, in passing from one medium to another.” In this exhibition, refraction is a metaphor for how these artists have been illuminated and influenced by their study at CIA, as seen in their ensuing creative efforts.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 4:52 PM, 05.31.2016

Fairfax alumni invited to June 3 centennial celebration

Fairfax Elementary School will host a centennial celebration on Friday, June 3, to top off its year-long study of the past 100 years.

To commemorate the opening of the original school building in the fall of 1915, students and staff have focused on one decade each month of this school year. Morning announcements contain a historical fact, students dressed in costumes from their favorite decade for the Century Parade on Halloween, alumni have made classroom presentations, and each era's music is played in the lunchroom on Music Mondays.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 11:31 AM, 05.31.2016

New restaurant to feature authentic Greek and Indian flavors

Eustathea Kavouras in her home kitchen.

Eustathea Kavouras, owner of Greedy Girl Ethnic Street Flavors, a new restaurant specializing in Greek and Indian street food, is working toward a summer opening at 2158 Taylor Road, next to Mister Brisket.

This is Kavouras’ first foray into the food business. For the past 22 years, Kavouras, 60, has been a physician assistant at various area hospitals. But, she said, she has always wanted to own a restaurant: “It’s been a dream of mine since I was 12 years old. I have been cooking all of these years, and I decided it was time to do it.”

“I was raised Greek, and I began cooking Greek delicacies with my mother and grandmother when I was 4,” Kavouras explained. “Then I spent time with an Indian family, and my adopted culture is Indian. I visited India several times, primarily learning how to cook their foods.”

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 6:11 PM, 05.31.2016

There goes the neighborhood—again

The author, on Coventry, in the 1970s

A few tattoo parlors have popped up in Cleveland Heights in the past year or so. And I’ve been hearing more and more people complaining about them. People around my age. But I’m not one of them, for a few reasons.

The first one is that it doesn’t matter to me, because, you know—who cares? Why should I, or you, care? If someone—someone who is not you—gets a tattoo, it doesn’t hurt you or do you any harm.

Second, getting tattoos is a big fad right now; people of all ages are getting them. And, I need to add, people of all races are getting them—because I know that’s a concern of many old white people. I’ve heard and overheard conversations about that. But white people are getting tattoos, too, in at least equal numbers—so don’t worry that your neighborhood will change in ways that you would rather it didn’t.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:52 PM, 05.31.2016

Larchmere PorchFest returns on June 18

Summertime is festival season, and the Heights is no stranger to presenting free live music festivals that draw people to our communities. Now in its eighth year, Larchmere PorchFest kicks off on Saturday, June 18, 1–10 p.m., including its afterparties. This free, family-friendly event boasts 30 bands on 30 porches throughout Cleveland's Larchmere neighborhood.

PorchFest, the Heights Music Hop and Brite Winter Festival have developed into a trifecta of popular local music festivals. Last year, organizers of each partnered, enhancing Cleveland’s cultural scene, while simultaneously benefiting the individual communities.   

"Sharing our resources is a great way for all of the festivals in Cleveland to grow and thrive," said Jesse Honsky, president of the board for PorchFest.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 2:11 PM, 05.31.2016

UH resident founds website for women without children

Karen Malone Wright

A large percentage of women in the United States and around the world are not having children, either by choice or because of circumstances beyond their control. In 2013, Time magazine ran a cover story about the changing demographic among women. According to the 2014 U.S. census, 47.6 percent of American women between the ages of 15 and 44 did not have children.

To address the needs and concerns of childless women, University Heights resident Karen Malone Wright started the TheNotMom website. It gets more than 10,000 visits and 35,000 page views each month. On Oct. 6 and 7, she’ll host TheNotMom’s second international conference at the new Hilton Cleveland Downtown Hotel.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 6:05 PM, 05.31.2016

Alan Freed honored at Lake View Cemetery

Steve Van Zandt talking to the crowd about Alan Freed's impact on music.

More than 500 people turned out at Lake View Cemetery on May 7, to honor and celebrate the life of legendary deejay Alan Freed, the man who coined the term “rock and roll” and who produced the nation’s first rock concert, back in 1952. Freed’s ashes were interred at the cemetery.

Another legendary deejay and rock historian, Norm N. Nite, served as the emcee of the ceremony. “Alan Freed and rock and roll are synonymous,” Nite said in his opening comments. “Alan Freed changed the course of popular music.”

Freed began working at WJW-TV in Cleveland, after a couple of radio jobs in other cities. In 1951, Freed met Leo Mintz, who owned a Cleveland record store called Record Rendezvous. Mintz sold a lot of rhythm & blues records at his store and introduced Freed to the music. He also helped Freed get a job at WJW radio, where he became a popular Cleveland radio personality.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 5:13 PM, 05.31.2016

Noble Presbyterian celebrates 25th annual strawberry festival on June 3

Marcelo Atanasio and Joan Webster help guests at a past Strawberry Festival.

On Friday, June 3, 6–8 p.m., Noble Road Presbyterian Church (at the corner of Noble and Kirkwood roads), will host its 25th annual Strawberry Festival.

Celebrate the end of the school year by joining with neighbors and friends at this free event. Strawberry shortcake, ice cream, music—provided by local bluegrass group Squirrel Jam—and fellowship will be plentiful.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:09 AM, 05.31.2016

Gearity broadcasts the news

Fin Mouncey, first-grader and self-described "weather boy."

Gearity Professional Development School has its own weather boy. That’s right. He’s Fin Mouncey, a first-grader, and he opens his daily forecast with: “Good morning. This is Fin and I’m still your weather boy.”

Mouncey is not simply reading the morning announcements over a public address system, as is common in most elementary schools. Instead, he stands in front of a green board (a bright green sheet hanging in Principal Katrina Hicks' office) and points to invisible icons of the next day’s projected high and low temperatures, while being filmed for his brief segment in what will become a two- to three-minute video newscast. (See the videos at

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 4:23 PM, 05.31.2016

Fairfax Elementary students run special store

Drew Fitzgerald, Major Lee Russell and Ja'Michael Dye (from left), at the Tiger Mart Express.

There’s a new store in town. It’s called the Tiger Mart Express, and, staring in February, Fairfax Elementary School students have been able to visit it in their lunchroom on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, to purchase school supplies. Here’s the thing that makes this shop special: it’s managed and run by students in special-needs classes, many of whom have multiple physical handicaps.

The primary curricular focus for Fairfax’s special education classrooms is “functional life skills.” The students learn how to communicate with others, how to navigate their neighborhoods, and how to perform basic tasks, such as handling money, and making and responding to requests.

The brainchild of speech language therapist Marilyn Gardner, the store enables students “to apply the skills learned in the classroom to a functional and real-life situation. Students will utilize math, reading, organizational and overall communication skills.”

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 4:36 PM, 05.31.2016

University School senior is National Merit Scholar

Henry Shapard

The National Merit Scholarship Program has announced that University School senior Henry Shapard, of Cleveland Heights, is a winner in its 2016 National Merit Scholarship Competition. Shapard plans to attend Yale University, and study music and history.

Shapard, who started his University School education in kindergarten, is the recipient of the 2016 Phi Beta Kappa Award. He is a Davey Fellow, studying classical music criticism, and is student conductor of the University School Chamber Orchestra.

Outside of school, he is co-principal cellist with the National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America, and principal cellist with the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 4:15 PM, 05.31.2016

Democracy (not!) in Cleveland Heights

To the Editor:

For 90 years, Cleveland Heights council elections were open affairs. That changed four years ago. Since then, [CH City] Council chose three of our council representatives using a now-abused section of our city charter that empowers it to fill empty council seats. Intriguingly, all three appointees are close friends and/or cohorts of [Mayor] Cheryl Stephens.

It is no surprise [to] this observer of council activities that these appointments took place behind closed doors—no meeting minutes reflect any discussion or weeding out of applicants who would be our representative.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:46 AM, 05.30.2016

A CH-UH district parent's view of Ohio EdChoice

To the Editor:

In the ongoing dialogue concerning the use of public funds for private education, incoming FutureHeights board member Matthew Wilson recently argued in favor of this practice. Mr. Wilson contends that there are many private-public partnerships for which taxpayer dollars are allocated. While this may be true, that does not necessarily make it right. I object to the use of public funds for private education on several grounds. However, here is my main objection: private schools are not obliged to enroll everyone.

Private schools admit and dismiss children from their schools based on behavioral issues, academic ability and special needs. Public schools cannot do so. Public schools must educate everyone.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:45 AM, 05.30.2016

How 'public' is public education?

Welcome to Heights of Democracy, a new column that will explore the meaning and practice of democracy locally, in Cleveland Heights and University Heights. We will tackle questions such as: How have grassroots efforts by Heights individuals and groups promoted civic involvement and democracy in our communities? How do neighbors work together to make life better for everyone? How do residents interact with our municipal governments? What local governance practices might elicit increased and more-effective citizen participation? How is our local autonomy enhanced or limited by state and federal policies and economic priorities? If you have topics to suggest that shed light on these issues, we’d love to hear from you.

For decades, Heights citizens have been passionately and effectively involved in our communities, often resisting powerful interests, from stopping the Clark and Lee freeways in the 1960s, to fighting racially based blockbusting in the 1970s, ‘80s and ‘90s. The Heights Coalition for Public Education is a grassroots group working in this tradition, as two young members illustrated early this year.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:43 AM, 05.30.2016

We must retain and attract school district employees

In the beginning of May, about one month after being laid off, one of our CH-UH teachers was recalled to her assignment by administration. She refused the recall because she had gotten a job in another district—one of the more wealthy districts in Northeast Ohio, where it is unlikely that she will have to worry about being rated poorly on teacher evaluations for low student growth measures. The teacher is young and great at her job, enthusiastic and vibrant in her classroom. And we lost her.

We wish her and all of the teachers who will [no longer] be working in our school district well, and we will miss them. It is our loss. Of course, this is not the first time someone has left CH-UH employment, and won’t be the last.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:39 AM, 05.30.2016

Intrinsic motivation, not accountability, produces excellence

It’s June. Once again, the school year comes to an abrupt end. Comfortable routines evaporate, and other sources of stimulation take over. Children and teachers say goodbye, knowing the process will begin anew in the fall. Well-deserved vacations commence.

So much happens over the 180 days of a school year. Teachers—special guardians of our youth—provide safety and stimulation and create activities to inspire learning and cultivate the minds of young people. Children grow and change. When the seemingly endless year comes to a close, sincere words and gifts of gratitude make their way from children’s hands and hearts to their teachers.

As testing has permeated education, I worry about our teachers and their ability to recover over the summer. High-stakes testing takes a debilitating toll.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:37 AM, 05.30.2016

Sustainable Heights Network invites community to June 13 program

The first community event hosted by a revitalized Sustainable Heights Network will feature a presentation on Sustainable Cuyahoga: A toolkit of recommended best practices for cities in Cuyahoga County. The program will take place on Monday, June 13, 6:30 p.m., at the Lee Road Library.

Mike Foley, Cuyahoga County director of sustainability, in partnership with David Beach, executive director of GreenCityBlueLake Institute, developed the toolkit to provide best practices and resources for all 59 municipalities in Cuyahoga County. It includes recommendations for public officials to [enable them to] learn about sustainability issues, get help from local experts, and take action. It is also a resource for citizens who want to work with local government officials to improve their communities.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:33 AM, 05.30.2016

CSU's Viking Planners present study of Cedar Lee Business District

Members of the Viking Planners present their findings and recommendations to the community at the Cedar Lee Theatre on May 9.

Viking Planners, a team of graduate students from the Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University, presented a market study of the Cedar Lee Business District to an audience of more than 125 at the Cedar Lee Theatre on May 9.

FutureHeights, through its Heights Community Development Alliance program, had contracted with the students to complete the study as their capstone project. Robert A. Simons, professor and former director of the Master of Urban Planning, Design and Development program at Levin College, and Jim Kastelic, program director for the Ohio office of the Trust for Public Land, co-taught the class.

“This was the first time Viking Planners completed a project outside the City of Cleveland, and it was a competitive process to be selected for the study,” said Deanna Bremer Fisher, executive director of FutureHeights. “We wanted to bring a planning project to Cleveland Heights, and Cedar Lee was the best fit with the class’s objectives. The streetscape and high school renovations are going to have a big impact. We wanted to see how we could build on these projects and the district’s lively arts and restaurant scene.”

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:31 AM, 05.30.2016

Library partners to screen film about Bhutanese refugees

"Refugees of Shangri-La," a documentary film about the recent experience of Bhutanese refugees settling in America, will be shown on June 11, 6 p.m., at Garfield Memorial Church (1534 South Green Road in South Euclid).

The screening came about through a partnership of the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library System, the Cleveland-based ASIA Inc. and Garfield Memorial Church, and provides an opportunity for residents to learn about this growing group of refugees who have been settling in the Heights for nearly 10 years.

“Since 2008, Bhutanese refugees have been arriving in the Greater Cleveland area, primarily settling in Cleveland Heights, South Euclid and Cleveland’s West Side,” said Michael To, program coordinator at ASIA Inc. “Right now, about 400–500 Bhutanese refugees live in the Cleveland Heights area.”

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:12 AM, 05.30.2016

Hope Lutheran Church hosts day camp

Campers meet for outdoor Bible discovery group with their counselor.

Hope Lutheran Church, at 2222 North Taylor Road, will host its 16th annual day camp for children who have completed any grade from kindergarten through sixth grade this current (2015–16) school year. The camp runs from Monday, June 27, through Friday, July 1, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. most days.

“The Jesus Way” is this year’s theme, as three trained counselors from Lutheran Outdoor Ministries of Ohio will lead Bible study, discovery classes, singing, crafts and sports. Each day will center on an aspect of Jesus’ ministry, such as the feeding of the 5,000, forgiving the woman at the well, and washing his disciples’ feet while instructing them to serve one another likewise.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 9:45 AM, 05.30.2016

What’s going on at your library?

For a complete list of programs, and to register, visit

Coventry Village Library
1925 Coventry Road, 216-321-3400

Thursday, June 16, 7 p.m.

An Evening with Dick Meadows. Local author Meadows will share the story of his small-town boyhood and the complicated relationship between father and son. "Washing Day and Other Stories" touches on timeless and universal themes. No registration required; book signing to follow the talk.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:24 AM, 05.30.2016

FutureHeights interns stage student event on Lee Road

CWRU students in front of Lucky Sparrow Tattoo. [photo courtesy Nathan Merritt]

FutureHeights interns Nathan Merritt and Karen Kearney staged a professional development event for fellow students on April 15 in the Cedar Lee Business District. Both are graduate students at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences (MSASS) at Case Western Reserve University.

“Our goal for the Cedar Lee Community Immersion event,” said Kearney, “was to enable students to learn more about Cleveland Heights and the businesses and restaurants that are located there. We also hoped to get young people more engaged with the community and find out how they perceive it.”

The students met at the BottleHouse Brewery, where they received instructions for a scavenger hunt. Sruti Basu, director of community-building programs at FutureHeights and an MSASS graduate, gave a brief history of Cleveland Heights and the Cedar Lee district. She then surveyed participants to find out what they already knew about the area.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:22 AM, 05.30.2016

Create an exciting and fulfilling retirement

Heights Libraries volunteer John Jarvey stocks the Princeton Road Little Free Library. [photo: Sam Lapides]

Many seniors have untapped energy, ideas and interests during retirement. Starting a business or volunteering for a worthy cause are two stimulating and gratifying ways to keep the body, mind and spirit active in retirement.

The Encore Entrepreneurs Series, a partnership between The Cleveland Foundation and the Cuyahoga County Public Library, provides programs to help seniors start and grow a business. These include free workshops, coaching sessions, and events focused on business development and networking.

Visit or call 216-398-1800 to learn more.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 10:03 AM, 05.30.2016

Senior Citizen Happenings

Senior Citizen Happenings, sponsored by the City of University Heights, are open to all senior citizens. Events take place on Thursdays at 2 p.m. at the University Heights Library. To receive the monthly schedule by e-mail, call 216-932-7800, ext. 205, or send an e-mail to

June 2: Sara Phillips, manager of the University Heights Library, commemorates the 100th anniversary of Heights Libraries founding.

June 9: Pierre Brault, creator of Mercury Theatre Company, which performs shows at Notre Dame College in South Euclid, will describe the company's summer shows.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 9:56 AM, 05.30.2016

CH Senior Center News

The Cleveland Heights Senior Activity Center (SAC), located in the CH Community Center at 1 Monticello Blvd., offers a wide variety of programming for Cleveland Heights residents 60 and older.

Every Monday (12:15–2 p.m.) and Friday (10 a.m. to noon) a group gathers at the senior center to play a friendly game of table tennis. Beginners are always welcome. SAC has extra paddles available; players should wear athletic shoes and comfortable clothing.

Estimates are that more than 20 million people play table tennis recreationally in the U.S., and it is the most popular racket sport in the world. It is a sport that can be enjoyed by individuals of any age and physical ability, and is great exercise, teaching hand-eye coordination, challenging balance and stimulating rapid response.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 9:53 AM, 05.30.2016

Thank you to Coventry playground volunteers

Two volunteers get ready to weed Coventry playground.  

April 30 was the 45th biannual volunteer work day at the P.E.A.C.E. playground and gardens near the Coventry school building. The playground was built in October 1993 after three years of intense planning and fundraising by a group of dedicated Coventry Elementary School parents. Every spring and fall since 1994, a call goes out for volunteers, who repair equipment, and plant and maintain the gardens. Those who have time also “adopt” an area of the gardens to maintain on their own.

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Volume 9, Issue 6, Posted 9:42 AM, 05.30.2016

Local couple hopes to continue Mitchell’s Chocolates tradition

Jason Hallaman and Emily Bean are the new co-owners of Mitchell's Chocolates.

Photo credit: Stephen Cutri.

Newlyweds Jason Hallaman and Emily Bean are seeking to carry on the Mitchell’s tradition for the next generation of chocolate lovers. Bill Mitchell, whose family founded Mitchell’s Fine Chocolates in 1939, announced his desire to retire from the business last year. Without children or other family members to succeed him, he sought a buyer he could trust to carry on the brand and maintain the family recipes.

A few short weeks ago, he found two. Hallaman and Bean said they were out shopping on the Eastside when they saw a display of Mitchell’s chocolates and exclaimed how much they liked them. The store clerk overheard and casually asked if they had heard the news that the business was for sale.

“We go to the same church [Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Cleveland Heights], but we hadn’t heard he was selling the business,” said Hallaman. “We dropped everything and ran over to the store on Lee Road to talk to Bill.”

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Volume 9, Issue 7, Posted 11:35 AM, 05.24.2016