Neighborhoods: Tremont

(photo courtesy of Greater Cleveland Life) http://greaterclevelandlife.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Tremont_Cleveland_Neighborhood.jpg
(photo courtesy of Greater Cleveland Life)

Contributed by Emily Poirier

Tremont, one of Cleveland’s oldest neighborhoods, and the former location of the defunct Cleveland University which has since become the lovely Lincoln Park, is an up and coming neighborhood full of restaurants, boutiques, art galleries, and historic attractions.

Located west of the Cuyahoga River and south of the Ohio City neighborhood and Downtown, the most popular and walkable Tremont area is centered around the Chelsea Building, one of the oldest high rise buildings in the city.

Tremont is home to a number of noteworthy restaurants including Lolita, a trendy spot from the well-known chef and restaurateur, Michael Symon, and more casual eateries featuring sunny patios like The South Side and Fat Cats. No meal in Tremont is complete without a visit to Lily’s Handmade Chocolates, a treat for both chocolate lovers and craft beer devotees, or a stop at one of the two ice cream shops, Tremont Scoops and Churned.

Lemko Hall (photo courtesy of THD3 via WikiMedia) https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lemko_Hall_7-10-11.jpg
Lemko Hall (photo courtesy of THD3 via WikiMedia)

Aside from food and sweet confections Tremont boasts numerous other attractions. This includes quirky clothing and accessory stores like Evie Lou and Banyan Tree, a seemingly endless number of art galleries like Brandt Gallery, Eikona Gallery, and Inside-Outside Art Gallery, and The Loop which is in a league all its own as a two story coffee shop with an extensive record store hidden away on the second floor.

The area is also known for its historic churches which offer a range of different architecture styles like St. Augustine’s Catholic Church, St. Theodosius Russian Orthodox Cathedral, and Pilgrim Congregational Church.

Movie buffs will especially enjoy A Christmas Story House and Museum, the original home featured in the 1983 film, and adjacent museum that are both open to the public for tours. And Lemko Hall on West 11th Street, a building with a rich history of its own that is now home to retail establishments and condominiums, but is best known for being the location of the wedding reception in the 1978 movie, The Deer Hunter.

(photo courtesy of Fresh Water) http://www.freshwatercleveland.com/
(photo courtesy of Fresh Water)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More information

Tremont City Guide. Cleveland.com

Tremont Historic District. National Park Service

 

 

 

 

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Neighborhoods: Ohio City

By Jeremy Feador, Host Committee member

Guardians of Traffic (photo courtesy Einar Einarsson Kvaran via WikiMedia) https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:HHLorain-pylon2.jpg
Guardians of Traffic (photo courtesy Einar Einarsson Kvaran via WikiMedia)

Ohio City, one of the oldest neighborhoods in Cleveland, is now one of the most popular areas to hang out and grab a beer. A short car ride or long walk from the convention center, Ohio City’s main thoroughfare, West 25th Street, is where you can grab some food and check out a ballgame at the bar.

If you are looking for a place to run, start at Progressive Field and make the one mile run over the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge over to West 25th. You’ll enjoy some neat views of Cleveland and be greeted by The Guardians of Traffic.

The Westside Market, which has been covered in previous blog posts, is always a nice stop. However, if you are visiting Ohio City, there is a good chance you are checking out one of the fabulous microbrews. Perhaps the most well-known is Great Lakes Brewing Company. GLBC offers quite a few history themed beers (The Wright Pils, Elliot Ness Lager, Burning River Pale Ale) and a cozy atmosphere to enjoy your delicious brew. Rumor has it that Elliot Ness’ gun went off while in the bar (before it was GLBC) and the bullet hole can still be seen. GLBC also offers tours on Fridays and Saturdays.

Great Lakes Brewing Company (photo courtesy GLBC) https://www.greatlakesbrewing.com/
Great Lakes Brewing Company (photo courtesy GLBC)

Across the street you can visit Market Garden Brewery. August in Cleveland is usually very enjoyable, so grab a beer and join some friends in Market Garden’s patio. Follow in the footsteps of Republican presidential hopeful Marco Rubio and visit Townhall, another spacious eatery that offers a variety of beers. For the bike enthusiast, stop by Nano Brew. Offering 24 beers on tap, including some of their very own creations, Nano Brew also offers bikers the ability to tune-up their bikes. A partnership with the Joy Machines Bike Shop has helped to create the Nano Brew Bike Tune-up Station inside the bar.

If you are hungry for history (and food) make sure you stop by Mitchells Homemade Ice Cream and Crop Bistro. Mitchells, an award winning local ice cream shop offers a variety of flavors. They even collaborate with GLBC to create (non-alcoholic) beer ice cream. The Ohio City location opened in 2014. The building dates back to 1919 and was once a performance space for vaudeville acts.

Speaking of rehabbing historic buildings, if you are looking for a fancy dinner, try Crop Bistro. Located in a former bank building, the grandiose building has lovely golden ceilings and a spacious feel. Originally built in 1925, the original bank vault still sits intact. In fact, you can even grab dinner in the vault!

Cleveland’s Ohio City has come a long way in the last 30 years. Whether it is to grab a beer, ice cream cone, or dinner, making the trip to Ohio City is well worth it!

Crop Bistro (photo courtesy Crop Bistro) http://cropbistro.com/
Crop Bistro (photo courtesy Crop Bistro)

 

More information:

Ohio City website

Ohio City Guide Cleveland.com

Ohio City (City of Ohio). The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University

Nano Brew (photo courtesy of Discovering Cleveland) http://discoveringcleveland.com/nano-brew/
Nano Brew (photo courtesy of Discovering Cleveland)

Neighborhoods: AsiaTown

By Ron Davidson, Host Committee member

A Chinese dragon adorns a wall on a building on Payne Avenue in AsiaTown (photo courtesy of Ron Davidson)
A Chinese dragon adorns a wall on a building on Payne Avenue in AsiaTown (photo courtesy of Ron Davidson)

In the mood for some dim sum? Or Korean barbecue? How about a nice bowl of pho? Pad Thai? You can find all these and more in Cleveland’s AsiaTown neighborhood, on the near east side–just a short drive from the convention center. You’ll find good food and culture in this small but busy neighborhood.

AsiaTown began to develop as a distinct neighborhood around the 1950s, when the small existing community of Cleveland Chinese began to move here, supplemented by an influx of immigrants from China. By the 1970s, the Chinese were joined by immigrants from Vietnam, Korea, and other Asian nations, making today’s AsiaTown a diverse but close-knit community.

As we hinted above, there is a great variety of Asian (and other) restaurants in the area. Two of Cleveland’s favorite dim sum restaurants are in AsiaTown: Bo Loong on St. Clair Avenue, and Li Wah in the Asia Plaza at E. 30th Street and Payne Avenue. If you’re not in the mood for dim sum, but still want Chinese, there are more restaurants to choose from. For Vietnamese, AsiaTown’s pho restaurants get high reviews: #1 Pho and Superior Pho on Superior Avenue, just to name two. You’ll find good Korean food in AsiaTown, including Miega Korean BBQ, Ha Anh, and Korea House, all on Superior. And even some Thai food.

2015 is the Year of the Sheep, so you can find artistically-rendered statues of sheep throughout the neighborhood, each sponsored by a local business or organization (photo courtesy of Ron Davidson)

If you want to take some groceries home, AsiaTown has two supermarkets specializing in Asian foods: at the Asian Town Center, E. 38th and Superior; and at Park to Shop, in the Asia Plaza on E. 30th Street. You’ll find plenty of produce, meats, groceries, and prepared foods you won’t find at most supermarkets. Stop in for a fresh pork bun, spring rolls, a Vietnamese sandwich, or many other ready-to-eat foods. Or stock up on foods for the trip home. There are plenty of fresh baked goods in these stores, but you’ll also find some bakeries in the neighborhood. Koko Bakery is rated the best Asian bakery in town–you’ll find good bubble tea and Taiwanese shaved ice among their specialties.

Neighborhoods: Coventry Village

By Jill Tatem, Host Committee member

These days there may be more tattoos than tie-dye, but Coventry still retains the quirky independence that made it Cleveland’s hippie haven in the ’60s.

About 2 miles east of University Circle, in Cleveland Heights, Coventry Road between Mayfield Road and Euclid Heights Boulevard is two blocks of restaurants, bars, and shops.

You can find burgers and fries, vegan, Thai and Japanese cuisine, comfort food of all varieties, and one of the best milkshakes you’ve ever had (Tommy’s). Besides a wine bar (La Cave du Vin), Coventry offers concerts (Grog Shop), and numerous happy hour venues.

Coventry has, not one, but two, independent bookstores (Mac’s Backs and Revolution Books). You can find vintage toys and collectibles (Big Fun), vinyl records (Record Revolution), clothing and accessories — for you and your pets, Cleveland souvenirs and work of Cleveland artists (In the 216), and a real hardware store (Heights Hardware).

Be sure to visit Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park. Even if there’s no yoga or outdoor movie showing, it is a fun place to finish your Coventry visit.

More details are available at http://coventryvillage.org, including a Google Map.

 

Other Cleveland Heights shopping and dining districts include

Cedar Fairmount

Cedar Lee 

Fairmount Taylor

Coventry Village (Photo courtesy THD3 Wikimedia Commons)
Coventry Village (Photo courtesy THD3 Wikimedia Commons)

 

 

The War of 1812 in Northern Ohio

By Ron Davidson, Host Committee member

Perry's Victory, painted by William Henry Powell of Cincinnati in 1865. The painting is currently hanging in the rotunda of the Ohio Statehouse (photo courtesy of the Ohio History Connection, Perry's Victory Collection, SC 1038 http://server16007.contentdm.oclc.org/u?/p267401coll32,8354)
Perry’s Victory, painted by William Henry Powell of Cincinnati in 1865. The painting is currently hanging in the rotunda of the Ohio Statehouse (photo courtesy of the Ohio History Connection, Perry’s Victory Collection, SC 1038)

The bicentennial of one of the nation’s “forgotten” wars, the War of 1812, has recently passed. It is not quite as forgotten in Ohio, however, because this region was the northwest front of the United States of America’s war with Great Britain, its Canadian colony, and their Native American Allies. Ohio was both a defensive front and a staging area for the invasion of British held territory, including Canada. If you have some spare time to study history and enjoy the region, there are several nearby sites to visit.

The Perry's Victory and International Peace Memorial, shortly after construction (photo courtesy of the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center)
The Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial, shortly after construction (photo courtesy of the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center)

Lake Erie was a significant battleground in the war against the British, culminating in the Battle of Lake Erie, fought just off South Bass Island (better known as Put-in-Bay) in 1813. Oliver Hazard Perry led the American fleet to a victory that gave the United States control of Lake Erie for the remainder of the war. This allowed the Americans to take back Detroit, at the west end of Lake Erie. The battle and the subsequent years of peace between the United States and Great Britain are commemorated at the Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial at Put-in-Bay. You can get to the island via passenger ferry from Sandusky or Port Clinton, or by auto ferry from Catawba Island (each a little more than an hour’s drive west from Cleveland). About a hundred miles to the east of Cleveland, in Erie, Pennsylvania, you will find a replica of the brig Niagara, from which Perry let the battle after his flagship, the Lawrence, was destroyed.

A little further to the west are other historical battlegrounds of the War of 1812. Perrysburg, just south of Toledo, is home to Fort Meigs, built in 1813 by order of General William Henry Harrison as a defense post in the Northwest Territory of the United States. Twice in 1813, American troops withstood siege from British and Native American forces. Later in the war, a redesigned Fort Meigs was used as a supply depot for an attack on Canada. Today a replica fort stands on the grounds, offering museum exhibits and public events. On August 22 and 23, the Fort will host re-enactors and craftspeople demonstrating “Life in Early Ohio.”

Fort Meigs Blockhouses, photo by John Stanton 10 Sep 2010, under Creative Commons license. via fortwiki.com http://www.fortwiki.com/File:Fort_Meigs_Blockhouses.jpg
Fort Meigs Blockhouses (photo courtesy of John Stanton, via fortwiki.com)

And if you like to hunt for historical markers, Ohio has plenty of those on the War of 1812, including one at the site of Fort Stephenson in Fremont. “Old Betsy,” a cannon that helped to defend the fort, is in position at the site, but now it “guards” the Birchard Public Library.

The grave of George Croghan, leader of American forces, and the cannon “Old Betsy,” used to defend Fort Stephenson, now the site of the Birchard Public Library, Fremont, Ohio (photo courtesy of TouringOhio.com)

Happy Hour in Cleveland

By Jill Tatem, Host Committee member

One of the dangers of a packed and stimulating conference program is data clog. Experienced archivists know that taking breaks to refresh, relax, and chat with colleagues is essential. Fortunately, downtown Cleveland offers a range of venues for happy hour rejuvenation.

Some of those restaurants and bars also offer glimpses of Cleveland’s historic architecture, including:

A grocery store may seem a strange location for happy hour, but Heinen’s downtown is not your typical grocery store. Housed in the renovated Cleveland Trust Rotunda at East 9th and Euclid, the 2nd floor Lounge offers numerous wine and beer selections, small plates, people watching, and wonderful views of this renovated historic building.

 Downtown neighborhoods with concentrations of bars and restaurants are

The Host Committee’s restaurant spreadsheet offers more choices, both in these downtown neighborhoods and farther afield.

Cleveland RTA’s C-Line Trolley provides free transportation from the Convention Center to all these areas all day on weekends and evenings on week days.

Happy Hour guides are available from

 Cheers!

(photo courtesy Susan Frazier via Flickr Creative Commons)
(Happy Hour. photo courtesy Susan Frazier via Flickr Creative Commons)

A Tale of Two Markets

By Rita Knight-Gray, Host Committee member

West Side Market (photo courtesy Marvin Fong/The Plain Dealer via Cleveland.com) http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2015/06/west_side_market_faces_changes.html
West Side Market (photo courtesy Marvin Fong/The Plain Dealer via Cleveland.com)

The thriving West Side Market is Cleveland’s oldest continuously operating municipally owned market. It began in 1840 when land at the corner of Pearl (W. 25th) and Lorain streets was given by Josiah Barber and Richard Lord. Barber and Lord stipulated that it always be kept as a public market site to Ohio City and City of Cleveland ( the Cuyahoga River was the divide for Cleveland and Ohio City). Additional land gifts enabled the marketplace to expand as the population grew, and in 1912 the yellow brick building opened across the street from the first building.  The new building contained 100 stalls, an outdoor arcade with 85 stands, and the familiar clock tower. In 1973 it was designated a National Historic Landmark and has become an attractive location for local as well as out-of-town shoppers.  What ever you are looking for–fresh fruits and vegetables, exotic meats, all types of baked goods and specialty items, or maybe the sights and sounds of the diverse merchants and patrons–all can be found at the West Side Market. Visit the website for the times and an in-depth look of the market.

 

Haymarket location along Ontario Avenue, ca.1930. The area is now occupied by the Gateway Sports Complex (photo courtesy of Western Reserve Historical Society, from the  Encyclopedia of Cleveland History http://ech.case.edu/cgi/article.pl?id=WSM
Haymarket location along Ontario Avenue, ca.1930. The area is now occupied by the Gateway Sports Complex (photo courtesy of Western Reserve Historical Society, via the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History)

The defunct Central Market was located on the east side of downtown Cleveland. It was built in 1856 on the Ontario, Woodland and Broadway intersection.  It contained more than 200 vendors that were frequented by a bevy of customers. Due to neglect it became antiquated and lacked the proper sanitary facilities, but it was still used as a market. It was cited as a traffic, safety, and health hazard in the 1940s, so in 1946 a 1.3 million bond was approved to build a new market. Unfortunately it was destroyed by fire in 1949 and the bond money was used instead to renovate the West Side Market. In 1950 a new Central Market was created but due to financial problems the market was sold in 1986 to the Greater Cleveland Domed Stadium Corporation (then the domed stadium project didn’t materialize). The building was demolished and the land became part of the Gateway Sports and Entertainment Complex.

1999 aerial view of the complex and downtown Cleveland, Ohio (photo courtesy Paul M. Walsh via Flickr. Creative Commons https://www.flickr.com/photos/69805768@N00/677593640/
1999 aerial view of the complex and downtown Cleveland, Ohio (photo courtesy Paul M. Walsh via Flickr. Creative Commons