Latest News

Lakewood City Schools' Back To School Plan

Our protocols and strategies for the 2021-2022 school year have been developed with the #1 goal of keeping our students in school five days a week with minimal disruption due to illness. The following will be in place for at least the first quarter with a re-assessment on September 17, 2021:


  • Students grades PreK-5: Required when indoors, except when eating.

  • Students grades 6-12: Optional for all but strongly recommended for those who are unvaccinated. 

  • Staff: Optional for all but strongly recommended for those who are unvaccinated.  

eLearning Option:

Families who are not comfortable with their student(s) returning to the classroom may choose our eLearning LKWD option. This is a full-time blended learning program administered by Franklin School of Opportunity. Students work from home on lessons but will be required to meet in-person 30 minutes per week with District staff. Those interested in this option can call 216-529-4037 for more information. 

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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Send In Your Questions For Lakewood's Primary Candidates

Though it’s hard to believe with the calendar flipping to August just days ago, election season is upon us. It’s early this year because Lakewood has a primary on September 14. That’s just about 6 weeks from now.

If you aren’t aware, it’s time to pay attention. 

Three contenders are running for judge: Sara Fagnilli, Tess Neff and Brian Taubman.

City Council has a big race also, with six candidates running for 3 city council-at-large seats.

They are: Kyle G. Baker, Tom Bullock, Keith Davey, Sarah Kepple, Tristan Rader, Laura Rodriguez Carbone, Mark Schneider and Susannah Selnick.

Here’s where you come in. Every election year, the Lakewood Observer publishes the answers to questions submitted by readers and Observer editors to all of the candidates.

Each candidate gets the same questions and the same amount of space to respond, which will allow you to compare their answers as you try to make an informed decision at the ballot box.

What is important to you? Bars and sidewalk dining taking precedence over the needs of Lakewood homeowners? The big hole where the hospital used to be and whether there are plans afoot to transfer any more of Lakewood’s public assets into private hands? Speeders? Outdoor basketball? 


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Announcing My Candidacy For Lakewood City Council-at-Large Think Davey – Think Recycling and Transportation For Seniors 

It is with great pleasure that I would like to announce my decision to run for  Lakewood Council-at Large.

Lakewood has been a true blessing to me since 2007 when I met my lovely wife Judy at an Open House on Marlowe Avenue on a cold Sunday afternoon in  January. We married in 2008 and have enjoyed the diversity and vitality of this wonderful city. I feel that the time is right for me to start giving back to a town that has given me and my wife so much.

I have never held public office but feel that my long life experience working in the private sector will be a benefit to our city.

I retired in 2019 after a 30 year career in the waste and recycling industry. After  taking a short break, I decided to start up a small local business transporting senior citizens to their medical appointments, the grocery store, beauty shop and  other errands. I have had the privilege to meet so many wonderful individuals  with amazing life stories. There is so much wisdom in our seniors! They have so much to offer. As a senior myself, I intend to be a voice for seniors in our community. We need to utilize their rich history and experience to benefit and enhance our city. 

Increased recycling & waste reduction – I intend to use my experience in the recycling industry to work with our residents and businesses to increase our  recycling and waste reduction efforts. People in Lakewood love to recycle and are dedicated to the environment. We need to insure that our recyclables do not end up in the landfill. That is totally unacceptable.  

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Why I Am Fighting For Our Senior Citizens

I am the oldest of all my siblings.  As the first born, I have had the privilege to know each of my grandparents on a personal level.  During my childhood, I spent countless hours spending time with my grandparents-hearing about their experiences and the lessons they spent their lifetimes learning.

My grandfather William Schneider was a union carpenter for the county who told me about doing work for judges in the same courthouses where I would practice law twenty years later.  My grandmother Betty Schneider was a legal secretary who told me about the adventures of being a woman working downtown at a very different time.  My grandfather Mario Fioritto, whose parents died when he was just a young boy, told me about serving in the Pacific during World War II, and coming back to start a successful business to support his family.  My grandmother Corinne Fioritto told me about how her whole family, including her many brothers and sisters, worked in her family’s store and what a difference that made for her neighborhood.

These were not just grandparents, but heroes to a young boy.  I learned the values of family, determination in the face of adversity, and the importance of hard work from them.  These were lessons that would shape my life and career.  I am better for having spent so much time with my grandparents at a young age. 


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

District Moves To Cashless System For Fees, Events

The Lakewood City Schools has begun the process of transitioning to a cashless system for most transactions, including lunch accounts, general instruction fees, pay-to-participate fees, bookroom purchases, event tickets, and more.

The PaySchools EZPay system families have used to pay fees and load money on lunch accounts has been upgraded to PaySchools Central. The upgrade offers all the features of EZPay. The EZPay link on the District website ( will be replaced with the PaySchools Central link. Families will be prompted how to transition from EZPay to PaySchools when they first click on the updated PaySchool Central link.

PaySchools Central offers families many new features allowing for greater control over their accounts. New benefits include real-time loading of lunch account funds, a mobile app capability, the ability to store multiple payment options, details on purchases and payment history, auto lunch account replenishing, and advanced payment scheduling. A full list of features is included in the attached document.


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

School Supply Drive Summer 2021

2019 collection 

Thank you to the Lakewood community for supporting Supplies 4 Success’ city-wide school supply collection drive over the past 10 years. Your continued generosity makes a real difference to our students.

Believe it or not, it’s that special time of year again. Back to School shopping!  While most of you probably remember the excitement of picking out new school supplies, there is just something about the possibilities of a brand new notebook, a fresh pack of crayons, many of our local students’ families are unable to afford even the most basic of school supplies. 

That is where our amazing community comes in: Supplies4Success (a committee of the Lakewood Area Collaborative) aims to support the families and students who find themselves unable to purchase the supplies needed for a successful school year.

Fundraising has allowed us to purchase and donate graphing calculators to be part of a calculator library at Lakewood High School and to donate over 1,500 headsets – now an essential part of the academic experience. However, the majority of the supplies come from donations from the Lakewood community – one notebook, binder, or pack of pencils at a time.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Back To School Online Resources

Lakewood Public Library has a variety of online resources to support learning just in time for back to school. Students of all ages will find these online tools helpful, no matter what area of study. You can find these resources at

Finding a good book is easy with NoveList Plus and NoveList K-8. Students can find enjoyable books based on their interests, as well as their grade and reading level. Search and browse by genre, readalikes, award winners and more. 

With EBSCOhost, students can search thousands of magazines, newspapers and peer-reviewed journals. Search for articles by keyword or use publication search to browse through the archives of specific magazines and journals.

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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Thou Shall Not Steal

Is Shop Lifting A Crime? Yes!

I couldn’t help but notice last week that a recent debate in Lakewood has been over whether or not shop lifting is a crime. Or is it a form of teens striking out against society?

I would say yes it is a crime, and possibly striking out against society but someone needs to tell them it is wrong and to teach a lesson.

“Back in my day…” starts off one reasoning, and for this example I will use myself. I was about 8 years old when a ballon from a local store my mom and I were at ended up in my pocket. When I got home and filled it up, Mom asked where I got it. I told her the man at the store gave it to me. Well, it was a small five-and-dime, so Mom called and was quickly assured that no member of the store had given me a ballon

I did not know she had made the call and the next thing I heard from Mom was, “Well, let’s go back and talk to them, I am not sure you should take things from strangers." By the time we were walking in the store, I was in tears and confessing. Still she had me talk with the manager who for over 2 hours was telling me it was wrong, then picking up the phone to call the police. It was pure torture. If this had been 2021 instead of 1961, my Mother would have sued the store owner for mental abuse.


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

The Rotary Club Of Lakewood-Rocky River Sunrise Sets Goals For The 2021-2022 Rotary Year

Assistant District Governor Adam Sonnhalter administers the oath of office to Sunrise Rotary Club President Jason Pickering.

Newly installed Club President, Jason Pickering, has accepted the challenge of Rotary International President Shekhar Mehta, of the Rotary Club of Calcutta-Mahanagar, to add members to Rotary. The R.I. Theme for his presidency is “Serve to Change Lives.” New members will join existing members to practice the motto of Rotary, “Service above Self.”

The Sunrise Rotary Club members work through committees such as Community, New Generations, Vocational and International Service. Service projects implemented by these committees can truly “Change Lives” in Lakewood and Rocky River.

At his installation on July 28, President Pickering challenged the Club members to reach out tfriends and business associates, particularly younger men and women, and give them an opportunity to help “Change Lives” by joining Rotary!

R.I. President Shekhar Mehta has been a Rotarian since 1985. He trained as an accountant and founded a real estate development company, Skyline Group, which he also chairs. Jason Pickering, Sunrise Rotary President, lives in Lakewood and is active in his family’s farm and retail market in Avon, Ohio.  The Sunrise Club has a Co-President, Marty Harris, a past president of the Club, who will assist Jason during peak farm work seasons and share work with the various committees.


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Welcome CeramWorks Studio To The Neighborhood!

Studio space and guests.

A new small business has opened in Lakewood, CeramWorks Studio, located at 17303 Detroit Avenue. CeramWorks Studio is a painting studio that offers a wide variety of ceramic pieces and canvas images to paint, as well as a large private room to rent for parties and events. 

CeramWorks Studio is a community space that provides a fun and creative environment for people of all ages, to create art, long lasting memories, and gifts for all. Designed to be an accessible and welcoming space, the studio offers ceramics and canvas kits for a fun and easy going painting experience. Guests can choose from a wide range of pre-made ceramic objects including mugs, bowls, pet dishes, piggy banks, and figurines, as well as over 100 paintable designs printed on canvas. CeramWorks Studio will also have special items available for the holiday seasons, including Halloween, Christmas, Lunar New Year, Easter.

Our studio is a family-owned business started by me, my husband Julian and my sister Elizabeth Chang. Elizabeth and I grew up in Lakewood where our parents owned a small business. I spearheaded the concept because I have always found joy in painting. CeramWorks Studio is dedicated in loving memory of our late mother who shared her love of painting and community. The floor plan is designed to accommodate private parties and the studio's walls exhibit a rotating selection of works by local artists and entrepreneurs. 


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Who Should Judge Us, Revisited

A couple of weeks ago I sent a letter to the editor that did not fully assess Brian Taubman’s outstanding qualifications to be our Municipal Court Judge. After reading Brian’s article to this paper, and talking with him for almost an hour about his experience and his philosophy, I’ve changed my mind.

Upon further reflection, it occurred to me that the federal system requires only seven years of experience to sit for administrative law judge examination. Thus, Brian’s thirteen years of experience trying cases before civil and criminal courts is more than enough to qualify him to be a judge. 

At great cost to his political career, Brian ran for judge six years ago. Our municipal court bench needs his independence and commitment to doing the right thing no matter what other people think. 


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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Help Wanted Now!

Help Wanted
All up and down Detroit, Madison and even Lake Road.

Over the past two weeks while making my rounds at least 5 restaurant owners asked me if I knew of anyone looking for a job. I mentioned offhand that I did not, but then they asked about a Help Wanted ad in the Observer. While I mentioned that choice is always good, let me make a cattle call for all the restaurants in Lakewood. Parnell, just out of the hospital said, “We could really use some quality help on the line.” I asked if he was willing to pay, and his answer was a flat, “If they are good.”

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Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

"This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing" Live At Beck Center

Produced by Scott Spence, "This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing" reminds us we are all born of flesh and made of dreams.

This tale brings to life the struggles and aspirations of three sisters as one walks the globe to find her purpose, one searches for adventure, and the third grows where she is planted. Years later their journeys convene in a lovely home in the woods, albeit with a truculent badger.

Experience this brilliant piece of theater--perfect for audiences young and old alike—with actress Derdriu Ring, and director Eric Schmiedl as they light our imaginations on fire.

Friday, July 23, 2021 - Sunday, August 8, 2021

Preview Thursday, July 22, 2021

Ages 8 and up

70 minutes, no intermission


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Starr Gazer


Aries: The Ram is King of the Mountain this month, the sun is shining in your House of Romance, Manifestation is the Name of the Game…You’re first out of the gate, go get ‘em Ram.

Taurus: Let Go Bull, we know that’s not an easy assignment for you, however, you’ll be seeing red if you don’t loosen the reins a bit, luck is in the career arena for you & focus is on family.

Gemini: Communication, education & travel is in the Twins corner this month, it’s your story, write as you see fit, make yourself the STAR of your own movie, you’ve got the green light.

Cancer: Money, money, money is shining on the Sea of the Crab, your finances & other’s money…go spend some time in nature, & let the creative juices flow, you’ve got the potential.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

New Faces, New Roles In District Admin Ranks

The Board of Education recently approved a number of administrator moves that include one new face to the District with incoming Horace Mann Elementary Principal Sanya Henley and several current administrators taking on new roles.

At the June 21 meeting, Lakewood High School House Principal Bridgette Firstenberger was approved as the next LHS associate principal. She will replace Brian Siftar, who has taken a position in another district. Firstenberger has been with the district since 2015 when she was named the House 2 principal.

At the elementary level, Sanya Henley was named the next principal at Horace Mann Elementary School at a special meeting on July 7. She will replace Dr. Merritt Waters, who will begin a new position as a teaching and learning coordinator and will oversee the District’s student wellness and mental health initiatives. 

Henley was the coordinator of learning initiatives at Euclid City Schools and principal of its Early Learning Village. Under the direction of former Euclid Superintendent, Charlie Smialek, Henley was charged with creating and bringing to fruition the Early Learning Village for the district’s preschool and kindergarten students. She has also served as a principal in the South Euclid-Lyndhurst Schools and a teacher and International Baccalaureate coordinator at Shaker Heights Schools.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Alumni Event Celebrates The Ranger Bond

The middle school years. Most say they never want to relive those precious few years where everything seems to change in a young person’s life. However, on a recent Sunday afternoon a group of about 75 Lakewood City Schools alumni celebrated the bonds and memories created as middle schoolers with a fun day of games, food and friendship they dubbed “Revenge of the Rangers.”

Rangers primarily from classes from the 1980s-2000s gathered in the Metroparks for an afternoon of friendly competitions between Emerson, Harding and Horace Mann alumni. Some private school alumni or “Saints” participated as well. The teams tried to best each other in tug-of-war, egg toss and sack races. From talking to participants and comments online, the event was a great success and a blast for all.

Class of ‘93 grad Terry Alexander imagined the event as a kind of take off on the movie “Revenge of the Nerds,” and when he threw the idea out on Facebook, many alums jumped on board for the event. Jennifer Kunes (‘91) joined as the master organizer and put in tons of hours finalizing the logistics and details while Alexander served as the grillmaster, cooking up 15 slabs of ribs, 40 chicken legs and 8 pork shoulders. Jessica Clayburg (‘97) was the official event photographer and Marc Reimer donated handmade Rangers and Browns cornhole boards as prizes.

Alexander said he came up with the idea as a way to “bring people together and connect them.” “Lakewood was a really cool place to grow up and I am blessed to have grown up with the people I did,” he said.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Mayor's Corner: Investing In Our Infrastructure

At the July 19th Council meeting, Lakewood City Council unanimously approved my administration’s recommendation to dedicate $25 million of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to water and sewer capital needs. Using ARPA funds this way is a smart, strategic move, and, fortunately, it also fits clearly within the strict guidelines the federal government has set for ARPA dollars. 

By investing a large portion of these unforeseen resources towards long-term, pre-existing infrastructure needs, Lakewood will meet many of the goals I’ve heard when speaking to our citizens. Those include being good stewards of public dollars and addressing affordability concerns while continuing to provide the high-quality services our residents and ratepayers expect and deserve.

At the same Council meeting, City Council also approved my administration’s proposal to introduce an Impervious Surface Fee, which ties storm water fees to the comparative demand properties place on Lakewood’s wet weather infrastructure. Properties with larger amounts of impervious surfaces (such as parking lots) generate much more storm water runoff which our wet weather infrastructure must handle. But currently, ratepayers only pay sewer fees based on the metered water they consume. This new Impervious Surface Fee changes that system and is another example of meeting our goals of smart and fair fiscal policies. 

Our city’s Integrated Wet Weather Improvement Plan (IWWIP) and Clean Water Lakewood initiative (read more about these at this page on our website) were previously adopted to improve and update our city’s 100-year-old sewer system and deal with storm water issues. As we’ve all known for years, our city’s water and sewer systems need major work, with associated costs. 

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Lakewood Schools Hiring For New School Year

The Lakewood City School District is busy preparing for the 2021-2022 school year, including filling some remaining vacancies for its staff. The District is currently accepting applications for lunch monitors and other support staff positions in both general education and special education. The District is also looking for preschool paraprofessionals, who will be hired through the Educational Service Center of Northeast Ohio. Those interested in applying should visit the district website at and follow the application links contained in the news article titled "We're Hiring!"

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Children/Youth Events At Lakewood Public Library

Library Pen Pal

For children three years old through sixth grade

Do you miss the Library? We miss you too! Write a letter to a Library staff member telling us about anything from the last book you read to your favorite animal or even include a drawing. A staff member will read your letter and write you back.

Send your letter to:

Children’s and Youth Services

Lakewood Public Library

15425 Detroit Avenue

Lakewood, Ohio 44107

Virtual Storytime

For all ages

Join Lakewood Library staff members virtually as they read children’s picture books and share songs, rhymes and finger plays.

View these exclusive videos from our website at or through our Facebook at



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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Susannah Selnick Will Work To Bring Us Closer To A Society Where Everyone Is Valued And Participates

Congratulations hippies! Your work, worked! 

I’m supporting Susannah Selnick for Lakewood City Council because she gets it and works hard. I met her three years ago when she joined the Lakewood Chapter of the League of Women Voters to help register voters. I asked her to help me register voters at LEAF (Lakewood Earth And Food). “Yes.” I asked her to help me register voters at the Birdtown Picnic. “Yes.”  I asked her to drive with me into Cleveland and register voters. “Yes.”  I asked her to join me on the Lakewood YMCA Board and use her fundraising skills to help our neighbors participate. “Yes.”  She’s ready to work and help our community. She gets it.  

From Peace and Love in the 70’s, to Pride and AIDS Walks in the 90’s, to BLM right now, she understands, it’s in her DNA. We don’t have to educate her on why people who are different matter, she sees that value already. I heard her say recently, “We can’t have a conversation about you, without you.”  This understanding is insightful and telling.  

We need more female representation at all levels of government. A counselor was recently explaining to me the disservice that we do to our young boys and men when we expect them to lead, many without the desire, skill set, or knowledge. It makes them think that their ideas are always correct and that they’re entitled and righteous. Instead of forcing Square Pegs… let’s continue to encourage and support girls and young women to lead. Let’s have equal representation on decisions that affect our pursuit of happiness, our bodies, and our futures. 


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Virtual Meet The Author Event With Diane Vogel Ferri

Post-civil war America could not keep pace with Emily Warren Roebling. She was one of those notable women in history who didn’t waste daylight waiting for public sentiment to approve of her non-traditional ambitions.

Considered the nations’s first female Field Engineer, she took over construction of the Brooklyn Bridge when her husband, the chief engineer, fell ill. She also studied law, travelled extensively and became a sought-after speaker who became determined to convince an incredulous world that women deserved equal rights.

Local author Diane Vogel Ferri chronicles the life and times of this 19th century suffragette in “No Life But This: A Novel of Emily Warren Roebling.” Ferri will be joining Lakewood Public Library for a virtual Meet the Author event at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 12, 2021 to talk about the book.

You can watch this program as well as other Meet the Author events on and on Thursday evenings at 7:00 p.m.  If you miss the premiere, the videos will also be available on the Library’s website

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Supporting Residents, Communication, The First Step During Blackouts

Power outages seem to be a perennial issue in Lakewood. Residents can usually expect outages after thunderstorms, due to fallen powerlines, or fallen tree limbs. But a few weeks ago, in over 90 degree heat and on a cheerfully sunny day, the lights went out for reasons that are still a mystery to most Lakewood residents like me on the West End. 

During the outage, my phone, social media and email were almost immediately filled with messages - some from neighbors wondering what was going on, others calling for help for refrigerated items like insulin and perishable foods, and others from seniors who worried about heat exhaustion with the loss of A/C. I spent the next 8 hours coordinating resources, putting residents in touch with local organizations and trying again and again to reach someone at FirstEnergy who could provide some answers. At 2am, I was finally able to get a representative from FirstEnergy’s Facebook page to give me a direct line I could call in the morning. At 9am,  I was told by First Energy that they had no idea why the lights went out in the first place.

Residents have continued to experience power outages since. The power even went out during a recent city council meeting (though quickly restored). Though city council was able to keep on track during the outage, tweeting photos, and continuing the people’s business, many residents say they wish local leaders would notify them as soon as outages occur and keep them updated throughout these events. 


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Take A Walk Through The Morgan: Continuing To Fill Our Galleries After The Pandemic

Cross Generations; bridging the gap of artists 

When all hope seemed lost and our gallery walls screamed for something new, we were ecstatic to begin our exhibition season this February with "Navigation: Lake Erie – Great Lakes," and have continued with the 2019 Artists in Residence exhibition, "This Moment." The pandemic put a halt to our operations, not too long ago our staff were furloughed, we paused our residency program, and paused our gallery season for 2020. However, with perseverance and faith in the mission of the Morgan, we have officially reopened our gallery doors for in-person tours. Our in-person workshops have resumed, our Artists in Residence are hard at work as well. We are restructuring our staff department and have added many new faces here at the Morgan. They include Destyni Green, Anna Rouston, Belle Mercurio, Seneca Kuchar, and Hannah Ayers. We are excited to see what they will bring to our organization within their respective roles!

In conjunction with the Museum of Creative Human Art (MOCHA), the Morgan Conservatory will be housing "Cross Generations; bridging the gap of artists" now through September 17th. MOCHA sets its intentions on intergenerational connection as it plans to deliver (curate) a show that brings multidisciplinary artists of different generations under one roof. MOCHA states, “Relationships are the critical ingredient in well-being, particularly as we age.” Combining the voices of older and younger generations, this show is a testament of the best work from these artists at this moment in time, creating an artist network and celebrating cameraderie. Amplifying our artists of color, this exhibition is our collaborative way to shift our focus, bridge the gap, and continue to highlight our artists in our community.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Mamaliga, Here We Come (Again)

The 2021 version of St Mary's traditional Romanian Festival awaits you with outstanding foods delivered to your car. You will be able to enjoy some of your favorite Romanian foods at home or at a picnic table by the lake.

Starting Friday, August 20, from 4-8 pm, continuing Saturday, August 21, from 2-8 pm, and winding up Sunday, August 22, from noon-6 pm, you can order your selections from the modified menu being offered in this second year of the pandemic: stuffed cabbage, chicken paprikash, our famous mamaliga (polenta baked with cheese), sausage and sauerkraut, mititei (our Romanian mighty burgers) grilled on the spot, hot dogs and fries for the kids, plus the ever-popular elephant ears (langosi) and dessert delivered right to your car

"It was a difficult decision to continue with a second year of drive-thru, but, according to Father Remus Grama, parish priest, "We decided to remain cautious, and we hope this decision will be seen as a valuable substitute for our successful yearly summer festival.  All appropriate safety precautions are in place for the food preparation and drive-thru serving process."

This year experience a smaller "taste of Romania" through the good foods being cooked and offered with love by St Mary Romanian Orthodox Cathedral, located right up the street at 3256 Warren Rd in the Kamms Corners neighborhood. Call 216-941-5550 for further information or visit our website


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Kyle Baker For Lakewood City Council

When I moved to Cleveland 8 years ago, the first question I was typically asked was: “Are you a Westsider or an Eastsider?” After letting them know I had just moved from Columbus after graduating from Ohio State, I would say, “I live downtown and I love it.” Fast forward a few years, my wife and I were looking for more space for us and our goldendoodle, Duke. As young professionals, we wanted a community that is walkable, has an established restaurant scene, has access to the Lake and parks, and is safe. We started our research and talked to close friends about the communities they lived in and where they grew up. No one had a deeper passion for and understanding of their community than Kyle Baker for Lakewood.

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 1:01 PM, 08.04.2021

Lakewood Arts Festival Real Art, Real Music, Real Food Saturday, August 7th, 10AM - 6PM

For one glistening summer day, Lakewood closes Detroit Avenue, between Belle to Arthur Avenues, to bring artists of all disciplines together along with 15,000 collectors and art lovers. The juried festival hosts over 130 regional and national artists and makers displaying paintings, prints, photography, art glass, ceramics, jewelry, sculpture, fiber and more.  

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

New Superintendent Takes Over

This summer marks an important transition for Lakewood City Schools, one that we know will be an important step in the growth of the district and the educational success of its students. With Dr. Mike Barnes having stepped down as Superintendent of Lakewood City Schools last month, the district now looks forward to the tenure of Maggie Niedzwiecki in the role and everything she brings to it.

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Summer Meltdown Hybrid 5K & Family Fun Run July 25

Summer Meltdown Hybrid 5K & Family Fun Run Next Sunday, July 25 - Register Today!


It’s time to lace up your running shoes and start training! Registration is now open for Lakewood Summer Meltdown Hybrid 5K & Family Fun Run sponsored by Melt Bar and Grilled, will be orchestrated as a hybrid event with an in-person race on Sunday, July 25 and a virtual race taking place July 10 through 23 to ensure that all participants have the opportunity to continue this long-held Lakewood summer tradition. The Hybrid Meltdown 5K serves as a fundraiser for LakewoodAlive, a community centered non-profit organization.


For those Meltdown fans interested in a more relaxed exercise experience, the 1 Mile Family Fun Run & Walk is priced right at $12 per participant and intended for anyone to enjoy.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Why A Judge Can Have Empathy And Still Protect Lakewood

Brian Taubman

Candidate for Lakewood Municipal Court Judge

My experience as a criminal defense attorney is what separates me from my opponents. I have been in the muck with my clients, and I know the trials and tribulations they have dealt with — something my opponents have never done in their legal careers.

Throughout my legal career, I've learned that as a judge, you can be tough but fair; that throwing down the hammer and max sentencing defendants isn't always the answer. We need a different approach in Lakewood, an alternative to merely punishing people and moving on. It's clear that just punishing offenders does not work. It leads to the overcrowding of our jails, and with no rehabilitation efforts, these individuals become habitual offenders. The old brutal approach does not work; the antiquated crime and punishment approach does not work. My opponents will not change the norm — they are the norm, a product of the same broken system I am attempting to change.


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Mayor's Corner: Helping Lakewood's Families Stay In Their Homes

Lakewood is a community that has risen to meet the challenge of the COVID-19 crisis. So many went above and beyond in their work, and our community came through the pandemic unified in our determination to help those in need. We can all be proud of how our city came through this crisis.

Our city was one of the first nationally to provide COVID funding through our Small Business Rent Relief Program, which helped keep the doors open for over 200 businesses that form the core of our economy and do so much to serve our residents. The grants were effective –our staff’s interactions with the business community indicate that the pandemic did not affect Lakewood’s overall occupancy rate, which is a tremendous feat. Our residential housing relief program was soon launched, and helped keep over 1,400 Lakewood residents in their homes. 

Even as we gradually emerge from the pandemic, many residents remain vulnerable, especially those with lower incomes and those who lost employment. With the State of Ohio terminating additional unemployment funds and federal protections against evictions ending on July 31st, a risk of a housing crisis exists for Lakewood’s must vulnerable if we do not act swiftly. 





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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Nutcracker Auditons For New Lakewood-Based Dance Company

Dance is back!

Ballet Legato is excited to host is first annual production of The Nutcracker, choreographed by Executive Artistic Director, Jennifer Muselin. This is a holiday classic and every child remembers their first Nutcracker performance and the beauty and wonderment of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her brave Cavalier. All performers, regardless of studio, ages 5 & up are welcome to audition. Please email to reserve your spot and arrive 30 min prior to audition time to fill out audition information.

Sunday, August 22: North Ridgeville JAM Dance Academy. 35100 Center Ridge Road, North Ridgeville

Saturday, August 28: Lakewood Ballet Legato 13000 Athens Ave., #203, Lakewood

Students Ages 5-7 10am-10:45am. Students Ages 8-10 11am-11:30pm. Intermediate Dancers Ages 11 and Up 11:45am-12:45pm Advanced Dancers 16 & up 1:00pm-2:00pm


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Madison Is Happening

Third Thursdays at Madison Park
July 15, Aug. 19 and Sept. 16 from 6-7:30 p.m.

Friends of Madison Park and Lakewood Vineyard Church present free community events held in partnership with the City of Lakewood featuring refreshments from local eateries, family-friendly activities and neighborly conversation. Each event – scheduled for July 15, Aug. 19 and Sept. 16 – will take place on a Thursday evening (6 to 7:30 pm) in the grassy area next to Madison Park's main picnic pavilion near the softball field.

Aug. 19 - Live Reggae Music by Local Band Lake Irie + Taco Tontos Baby Burritos
Sept. 16 - Yoga Hosted by Om Land CLE + TOST Baked Goods


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Attorney Marc Dann Sues DeWine Over Unemployment

(Photo courtesy of Marc Dann)

Attorney Marc Dann, a Lakewood resident, is suing the DeWine administration on behalf of unemployed Ohioans.

The Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program provides funds for an extra $300 per week, for eligible unemployed claimants. Governor Mike DeWine terminated Ohio’s participation in the program effective June 26, although the funds remain available.

Dann, a former Ohio Attorney General, filed suit July 6 in Cuyahoga Common Pleas Court, against DeWine and Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services Director Matt Damschroder.

Dann’s core argument is that Ohio law requires Damschroder to seek as much benefit as possible from programs like Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. Ohio Revised Code Section ORC 4141.43(I) requires that he “…cooperate with the United States department of labor to the fullest extent…[and] take such action…as may be necessary to secure to this state and its citizens all advantages available under the provisions of the ‘Social Security Act’ that relate to unemployment compensation…”

Ohioans from across the state have detailed the harm caused by DeWine’s order, in correspondence shared with Dann’s lawfirm. One woman wrote “I am a psych nurse, my husband was a machinist for standard aero. Until planes start flying and families start placing dementia/Alzheimer’s loved ones back in facilities we won’t get our jobs back.” Many others related personal hardship, as well as ongoing problems with Ohio’s unemployment bureaucracy. Several people contacted Dann seeking help from other states where Republican governors have also turned away the additional funds.

Similar lawsuits are underway in some of those states, including Indiana where Indiana Superior Court Judge John Hanley ruled in June that the state must continue paying the benefits.

“Indiana’s statutory language is very similar to Ohio’s,” says Dann. “We believe we are right on the law and absolutely right as it relates to public policy that protects the interests of the people of the state of Ohio.”

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Is Home Pride Fund For You?

Do you need to complete an essential home repair and you're worried about how you're going to pay for it? Perhaps the Pride Fund is a program for you.
The Lakewood Pride Fund is an innovative program of LakewoodAlive that leverages a collection of funds to secure home repair loans for Lakewood families who otherwise might not have access to conventional bank financing, helping families complete health and code compliance repairs.
Call us at (216) 521-0655 Ext. 3

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

The View From City Council

Last week I met with the Planning & Development Department to discuss their research on Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). ADUs are independent dwelling units, with facilities for sleeping and a kitchen and full bath, that are on the same property as a larger, primary dwelling unit. Our discussion focused on what type of ADU would serve our community best and what changes, if any, will have to be made to facilitate the construction of ADUs in Lakewood.  The Planning & Development Department made several recommendations on how we can encourage investment in ADUs, including increasing the allowable primary lot coverage in all single and two-family districts while maintaining existing setbacks. I am looking forward to further collaboration with the Planning & Development Department to ensure that we can provide this option to promote ageing in place in Lakewood.

Reporting ADA Compliance Issues

If you observe an ADA accessibility issue on any property owned and maintained by the City, you can now file a report on the Report A Problem Portal.  Simply choose “ADA Accessibility Issue on Public Property” from the drop-down list and complete the form. This new feature is a result of the work of the ADA Task Force, Councilmember Sarah Kepple, Chief of Staff John Storey, and Lakewood’s IT Department. Great job, everyone.

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Sherrod Brown, AFL-CIO Endorse Rader

Photos courtesy of Sen. Sherrod Brown and Councilperson Tristan Rader

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown has endorsed Tristan Rader for Lakewood City Council, praising him as “a leader who will continue to fight for affordable housing, public safety, and a cleaner environment in Lakewood.”

“Tristan understands that the Dignity of Work is not just a slogan, it's how we govern,” said Brown, “that's why I'm proud to endorse Tristan Rader for his re-election to Lakewood City Council."

Rader says that Senator Brown’s support is a moving validation of his work on council, as he completes with a large field in the approaching September 14 primary.

“Sherrod Brown has earned and kept Ohio’s trust, to a unique degree, by advocating progressive policy which people care about and understand,” says Rader. “That’s a standard I want to measure up to.”

Brown’s announcement arrived the same week as that of the Northshore AFL-CIO. On July 14, delegates of the prominent labor union endorsed Rader for a second term on Lakewood City Council, in a unanimous vote.

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Cleveland Shakespeare Festival Is Back At Lakewood Park July 24

Having gone “virtual” last year, CSF is delighted to return to our mission of bringing FREE Shakespeare in the Park to Northeast Ohio.

We missed you. We hope you missed us. While life has not quite returned to what it was, we are beginning to take those tentative first steps into the sunlight. And what better way to catch those rays than with the Bard, a picnic, and good friends hanging in a park? In that spirit, we are presenting one of Bill’s most popular and enduring works, Romeo & Juliet - directed by Dusten Welch!

As always, all performances are FREE! Showtime is 7 p.m. Bring a blanket or lawn chair. We’ll be trekking all across Northeast Ohio, visiting many favorite haunts as well as some new locations.

Nearby dates for Lakewood residents: Sat July 24th, Coe Lake Park in Berea, 105 S. Rocky River Dr, Sun July 25th BAYarts, 28795 Lake Rd, Bay Village, Friday August 6, Lakewood Park, 14532 Lake Ave. Sunday, August 8th, Lincoln Park, 1200 Starkweather Ave, Tremont.

Interested in volunteering? CSF needs volunteer ushers to hand out programs and assist audience members in finding a place to sit. Romeo & Juliet will be staged Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights from July 23 to August 14 in 10 locations throughout the Cleveland area. Volunteers arrive at 6 p.m. Please signup on SignUpGenius by clicking HERE.  If you have any questions about CSF ushering, please contact Clark Button at

For more information, including cast and crew bios, please visit our website:

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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Medical Discrimination Has No Home In Lakewood Or Ohio

Susannah Selnick is a candidate for Lakewood City Council-At-Large and pledges to be a vocal ally for Lakewood's and Ohio's LGBTQIA+ community. For more information visit

In recent days, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed the Ohio state budget, with a particular line item that has caused tremendous uproar from medical professionals, civil rights organizations, and the general public. 

Included in the $74 billion, 2,400-page budget was a clause allowing health care workers, hospitals, and health insurance companies to refuse to provide or pay for medical services on the basis of moral, ethical, or religious objection. Critics of this language were quick to act, and rightfully so. The mere inclusion of this language allows medical professionals to deny services to LGBTQ+ patients on the basis of moral objection. 

Why, then if 14 other line-items included in the budget were vetoed by DeWine, was this allowed to stay? According to the Governor, it is because healthcare in Ohio is plentiful, and anyone who is discriminated against can simply find another provider. In reality, this is not the case, as there are 159 Primary Care Provider Shortage Areas, and 120 Mental Health Provider Shortage Areas throughout the State, largely in rural areas. 


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Edgewater Sidewalk Fest Brings Art, Music, Play To Clifton Boulevard On August 8

This free event will be within walking distance of many Lakewood residents and we are also encouraging attendees to try RTA's upgraded 55 Cleveland State Line. 

On Sunday, August 8, Edgewater Sidewalk Fest will celebrate Cleveland’s coastal summertime with leisurely fun along Clifton Boulevard. This refreshing return to revelry is produced by Northwest Neighborhoods CDC and its predecessor, Cudell Improvement, Inc., and will feature exceptional local businesses and spur explorations of the beautiful Edgewater neighborhood.

Free and open to all, Edgewater Sidewalk Fest will be centered along Clifton Boulevard between W. 115th and W. 117th Streets with outdoor activities and live musicians from 12pm to 6pm. Come unwind with volleyball, face painting, and oversized tabletop games. Take snapshots at selfie stations, bring your puppy for a stroll, or keep your hands free for treats from Cleveland Cookie Dough, Scoot! Cold Brew, and other food pop-ups. Printed passports will guide your afternoon and give you chances to win prizes.

“We are thrilled to bring a free, all-ages event to our Edgewater community again,” said Adam Stalder, Executive Director of Northwest Neighborhoods. “You’ll be delighted as you meet our creatives and entrepreneurs who call Edgewater and the nearby Cudell neighborhood home.”


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Volume 17, Issue 15, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Virtual Meet the Author Events in August

Lakewood Public Library will premiere three exciting new virtual Meet the Author events in August. You can watch these programs on and on Thursday evenings at 7:00 p.m.

August 12
Diane Vogel Ferri will discuss her latest book, "No Life But This: a Novel of Emily Warren Roebling." Inspired by a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, this book is based on the true story of Roebling, who had to take over the construction of the bridge when her husband, the chief engineer, fell ill.

August 19
Jen Hirt discusses "Hear Me Ohio," a collection of essays about leaving Ohio. Hirt, who grew up in Ohio at her family’s business (Hirt’s Greenhouse), reflects on the places she has lived, finding beauty and fascination in nature.

August 26
Derf Backderf talks about his book, "Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio," a graphic novel retelling of the tragic story of the Kent State shootings. Backderf shares his own personal experience of when the National Guard came to Ohio, as well as what he found in his extensive research, and how he challenged himself artistically to recreate scenes from the actual historic event.

If you miss the premiere, the videos will also be available on the Library’s website:

Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on library news, programs and events.

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

“Remembering May 4” Exhibit Examines Lives Of Kent State Students

May 4, 1970 started out as another ordinary day. But for Kent State University students this day would be anything but normal. It was on this day that members of the Ohio National Guard fired into a crowd of demonstrators, killing four and wounding nine Kent State students.

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Who Should Judge Us?

In a few weeks, we’ll select the person who will preside over one of the most important things guaranteed to us as American citizens: A fair and impartial trial in a court of law. Serving as a federal administrative law judge for eight years, presiding over felony preliminary hearings as a Navy judge advocate, and thirty-five years of trial and appellate experience before federal, military, and state courts as well as administrative agencies has given me an understanding of the experience, attention to detail, preparation, and seasoning needed to serve the public as a judge.

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Rotary Club Of Lakewood Celebrates Charter Night

Nearly 30 members and guests attended the Charter Night and social of the Rotary Club of Lakewood Rocky River Sunrise. It was hosted at the home of Club Member Bill Minnich in Lakewood. It was an evening for reflection, social gathering and recognition. Eric Jolly, the out-going President, presented the Rotary District Governor’s Certificate to Larry Faulhaber in recognition as the Club's Unsung Hero for 2021. He stated that it recognizes Larry’s unbridled passion for service, his outstanding connections for our media presence, and his advice and counsel. This was followed by the introduction of Jason Pickering as the new Club Co-President for the 2021 – 2020 Rotary year. Jason then presented a gift certificate and a commemorative desk clock to out-going Eric for his service during this more than challenging year of the pandemic, closure of our meeting space, and development of our ZOOM meeting formats. 

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

It Takes A Community

"We don’t see funding for small classes b/c officials don't see learning as a humanizing experience- needing individualized attention, relationship building, & community. As long as that mindset exists, billions will go into the idea that learning is mechanical & transactional." I wish I had said this, but I must attribute these sentiments to their author, Selena Carrion, a teacher in the Bronx, rightfully frustrated over the NYC Mayor failure to prioritize reducing school size.

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Clark New Rotary President

Accompanied by his granddaughter, Steve Clark is inducted as president of the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River by immediate past president Gina Gavlak.

Steve Clark has been installed as the ninety-sixth president of the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River for the Rotary year July 1, 2021, to June 30, 2022, succeeding Gina Gavlak.

Clark’s first exposure to Rotary was his family hosting a youth exchange student from Brazil. He joined the Lakewood-Rocky River Sunrise Club in July 2011 and transferred to his current club seven years later.

The installation took place at the club’s annual Past Presidents Picnic at Elmwood Park. Nine past presidents attended including 50-year Rotarian Thom Geist. Gavlak presided over the ceremonies and inducted Clark, who was joined by his children and their families.

Past President Marjorie Corrigan (2019-2020) thanked Gavlak for her year of service through the pandemic and gave her the past president pin. Past presidents Julius Skerlan, Larry Yunaska and Bill Huffman attended the grill.


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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Stuff The Squad

The Cleveland Clinic Lakewood emergency room is partnering up with the Lakewood Fire Department to stuff the squad with school supplies as a way to give back to this great community!

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Businesses And Projects, Many Things Are Getting Done In Ward One

Tess Neff, Lakewood City Council Ward 1

Immigrant Son Brewery at 18120 Sloane Ave. is opening soon! The owner, Andrew Revy told me they are finishing the construction, they have started brewing, and canning will begin at the end of July. A fun fact Revy told me is there will be a beer named in honor of Zydrunas Ilgauskas (“Z”), a former basketball player with the Cleveland Cavaliers. All you IPA lovers can look forward to trying PerZverence, which will be available in a can or draft. Z himself is an immigrant from Lithuania and has chosen to make Lakewood his home. The full-service brew pub will have an executive chef with a food menu that consists of old world meets the new world cuisine. Need a private room for a gathering or event? Revy has you covered, and he stated the space will be great. 

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

What Is CouCou Sentiment?

You may have driven by or walked past a mysterious and quaint shop located on Detroit at the West End of Lakewood called CouCou Sentiment and wondered, “what the heck is a CouCou?!” 

The word coucou, pronounced koo koo, is informal French for “hello” or “hey, there.”

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Lakewood Observer Celebrates Sixteen Years

It started out as a lark, I was retired, and a mutual friend thought it would be fun to get Lakewood Pub- lic Library Director Kenneth Warren involved in a project.

The deep thought behind it was: “Mr. Warren is the smart- est, most open guy in town, and you are capable of anything,” was how it was described to me by Mary Hagan, Lakewood’s City Council Secretary.

We started online as the Observation Deck. A place where vetted real names were the only way in.

A safe place to discuss the good and bad of the city we love, Lakewood, Ohio.

At first Mr. Warren never thought it would last 3 issues, then 6, then nine, then 3 years, then sadly Ken passed away.

But the foundation was laid for the next 409 issues. We focused on amplifying the intellectual and artistic nature of Lakewoodites, though we would not be afraid to handle tough conversations while help- ing everyone understand what was/what is really going on.

We have captured and cat- alogued the thoughts, words and images of more than 7,000 Lakewoodites, roughly one quarter of the commu- nity, working together on over 10,000 stories and nearly a quarter million photos and images. Here’s to the next 16!

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 3:12 PM, 07.07.2021

H2O’s HOME ALONE Events Return In July! Register TODAY!

Some of H2O's 2021 H2O HOME ALONE Student Leaders

Don’t miss this chance to help your child be more prepared and confident in situations that could arise at home or traveling to and from school.

HOME ALONE events are designed by H2O high school leaders and staff to convey critical safety information to younger students in an engaging, meaningful way.  HOME ALONE also stimulates important conversations between parents and children about safety concerns.

HOME ALONE is for students 9-12 years of age who are Lakewood residents. In order to attend, children  must be  accompanied by at least one parent or guardian.  

During each 2-1/2 hour training, students will rotate through six interactive safety presentations led by H2O high school leaders. HOME ALONE event topics include:

* Emergencies – How and when to Call 9-1-1

* Basic First Aid – What to do if accidents or injuries occur

* Tricky People & Street Smarts – How to avoid potentially dangerous situations


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Volume 17, Issue 13, Posted 3:01 PM, 07.07.2021

With New Funding, Legal Aid Further Extends Eviction Prevention into Cuyahoga County Suburbs

Recently, Cuyahoga County committed one million dollars of federal funding to support legal assistance for tenants who lost income due to COVID-19. The County is granting this money to The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, the only civil legal service provider in Northeast Ohio. In 2020, Legal Aid prevented eviction in 91% of cases handled throughout Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake and Lorain counties.

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Volume 17, Issue 12, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Close/Mercado Memorial

The Lakewood community gathered on May 25 to honor and remember Lakewood High Class of 2020 graduates Max Close and Alejandro Mercado with a dedication of a memorial garden at Lakewood High School and the awarding of two scholarships in the names of the two young men who tragically died in a car crash in February.

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Volume 17, Issue 12, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

Rotary Inducts Baran As Newest Member

Corbin Baran has been inducted as the most recent member of the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River.

A resident of Lakewood, Baran is area vice president for Arthur J. Gallagher. He serves on the board of the Children's Hunger Alliance and is a member of the Western Reserve Association of Health Underwriters.

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Volume 17, Issue 10, Posted 2:16 PM, 07.21.2021

News And Events From The City Of Lakewood

Upcoming Events
July 6, 19 - City Council Meetings
Council has resumed meeting in person. Citizens will still be able to watch the livestream and participate remotely. To review upcoming meetings, agendas, or for more information on how to watch visit the City's Calendar.
July 9, 23 - Friday Night Flick
Join us for a free movie in the park. Bring your blanket and your lawn chair. Visit here for the full schedule.

ADA Transition Plan

The City of Lakewood is seeking proposals from qualified consultants to lead an ADA self-assessment of city properties and services. The well-qualified consultant will develop a Transition Plan that prioritizes improvements. 

Construction Update

Construction projects this summer are underway, as you may have noticed with orange barrels and signs appearing across the city once again. Here is a quick update and guide to this summer's construction work:
Projects In-Progress, to be completed in 2021:

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 3:01 PM, 07.07.2021

Local Photographer's Paris Pictures Selected For Book Benefiting Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame at Christmas. 

The Leica Historical Society (LHSA) selected three photos that I took of Cathedral Notre Dame for inclusion in a book LHSA is printing to help raise funds to restore the cathe- dral. LHSA is a group of photographers who use Leica cameras and lenses.

I have been documenting the Pari- sian joie de vivre since 2007 and have worked exclusively with Leica cameras since 1989 due to the superb sharpness and contrast that Leica lenses provide.

Master Framer John Rehner of Lakewood encouraged me to print some of my pictures of Notre Dame the first time I came into the gallery, even though I thought they might be cliché. Turns out John was right in more ways than one. The LHSA selected the pho- tos for its book. Since the fire, those pictures are a way to see a part of Paris we won’t have access to for who knows how long.

I made the third photo as I walked home from dinner at the Quasimodo Café the week before Christmas. White lights in trees along each side of the rue d’Arcole framed the Cathedral’s North Tower. Since I always wear my camera, I made a photo on Ilford Delta 3200 film.

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Volume 17, Issue 13, Posted 3:01 PM, 07.07.2021

Mayor's Corner

First, I am proud to announce that the City of Lakewood has moved to officially recognize the holiday of Juneteenth. I hope that Lakewoodites will use this holiday to educate themselves on Black history and culture. 
On June 16th, the City held a virtual Community Conversation to discuss the next phase of the City’s sewer plan, Clean Water Lakewood, and to discuss the Impervious Surface Fee which will greatly aid in the transition to sustainable sewer infrastructure. If you were unable to attend or wish to rewatch the meeting, a full recording can be found at

The City has recently completed a report on COVID-19-related assistance programs that were distributed across Lakewood with the help of CARES Act funding and the City’s Economic Development fund. Lakewood was able to provide $826,351 in small business assistance grants to 202 Lakewood businesses and provided $1,362,123 in residential rent relief grants to 1,409 Lakewoodites. Supporting those in the community during crisis is paramount to Lakewood..

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 3:01 PM, 07.07.2021

Madison Branch Renovation Is Underway

MADISON BRANCH RENOVATION--  ANCHORING THE PAST ....... with a vision of the future

In 1928, Library Trustees purchased the property near the corner of Madison and Clarence Avenues for $1 from the City of Lakewood and built what is now the Madison Branch Library, which opened on May 3, 1929. With only three modest renovations in its nearly 100-year existence, Library Trustees have invested in a renovation of this vital community asset.

The renovation will restore the original architectural charm of the “little library,” nestled in Lakewood’s vibrant Birdtown neighborhood, while ensuring the Branch remains responsive to community needs for generations to come. 

The renovation of the Madison Branch aims to improve the efficiency and usability of an historically significant building, including improving heating and cooling efficiency, addressing safety and ADA compliance, and increasing usable square footage, all while maintaining the building’s existing footprint. 
The renovation will be financed by reserve funds that the Library has accumulated from years of conservative spending. Property taxes will not increase as a result of this project nor will taxpayers be asked to approve a levy on upcoming ballots. 

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Volume 17, Issue 14, Posted 3:01 PM, 07.07.2021