Winter tends to be a time for hibernation and relative inactivity, but not for Dana Paul, builder of the spectacular new single-family home coming to fruition at 1427 Scenic Street in Lakewood.
As the saying goes, it takes a village. This is especially true in the case of LakewoodAlive, a volunteer-driven organization that relies heavily on community members to help fulfill its mission to foster and sustain vibrant neighborhoods.
Secure Your Bash Ticket Now and Get Growing
This contest might sound strange at first, but chances are it will grow on you. LakewoodAlive has unveiled details regarding the Epic Beard Contest, which will serve as a centerpiece of Loving Lakewood: Lumberjack Bash presented by Geiger's.
Lumberjacks and jills are cordially invited to attend the Lumberjack Bash – a fundraiser for LakewoodAlive – on Saturday, Feb. 25, from 7:30 to 11 p.m. at The Bottlehouse Brewery Lakewood (to secure tickets, visit LakewoodAlive.org). Upon arrival, however, guests may find themselves in a hairy situation.
The Epic Beard Contest presented by Men's Cuts invites Lumberjack Bash attendees to compete for the opportunity to claim an honor in four bearded categories: 1. Most Unique Beard, 2. Sexiest Beard, 3. Longest Beard and 4. Best In Show.
The facts set forth in Bad Government 11 (http://lakewoodobserver.com/read/2016/12/20/bad-government-11-new-foundation-is-objectively-worse-in-every) were delivered to City Council during the public comment portion of the Council Meeting on December 19, 2016.
Don’t miss the homegrown, hyper local news, events, opinions, photos and cartoons that impact and reflect our community.
A week ago we embraced a new calendar year, and the world is grabbing their life preservers, and jumping from the last one. But before we climb aboard, "Freedom! 17," let's sift through the rubble of 2016 and delve into the greatest of what last year had to offer.
Tickets for Fundraising Event at The Bottlehouse Brewery Lakewood on Sale Now
Many of us spent Saturdays this fall watching college football or enjoying the autumn foliage, but that was not the case for LakewoodAlive's all-star team of experienced volunteers known as the "A Team."
Walk past the historic Curtis Block building at 14501 Detroit Avenue in Downtown Lakewood and you’ll notice an attractive new window display. This vibrant addition to the urban landscape represents a culmination of a collaborative effort spanning months.
LakewoodAlive’s Design Committee worked with the City of Lakewood to activate the Curtis Block’s storefront windows. The end result: A beautiful window display installed just in time for Light Up Lakewood on Dec. 3.
The Design Committee – consisting of Chair Robert Donaldson, Randy Doi, Bryan Evans, Chris Frohring, Bili Kribbs, Dru McKeown, Marcia Moll, Jim Pinter, Heather Rudge, Rick Sicha and LakewoodAlive Executive Director Ian Andrews – sought to enhance the aesthetic appeal of this architecturally significant building, which was constructed during the early 20th century and has been designated as a historic structure.
Lakewood High School Juniors Sarah Bene and Abe Dalisky Honored on December 3
Lakewood High School juniors Sarah Bene and Abe Dalisky have been named Light Up Lakewood Queen and King for 2016. Students chosen for this honor have demonstrated their love for Lakewood through providing outstanding service to the community. In addition to reigning over the Light Up Lakewood Holiday Parade on Saturday, Dec. 3, Sarah and Abe were both awarded $500 scholarships sponsored by Plantation Home in Downtown Lakewood. Both winners have agreed to provide at least 24 hours of service to the community during the coming year.
This is the fifth year that David Stein, owner of Plantation Home and Cotton, and President of the Downtown Lakewood Business Alliance (DLBA), has sponsored the scholarship. Stein states, “It's an honor for us to encourage the youth of our community, and to thank them for their commitment to volunteerism.”
Whether running a road race or carrying his native country’s flag, Makorobondo "Dee" Salukombo is no stranger to being in the lead. Now he’s poised to lead the parade at the center of Lakewood’s longtime holiday tradition.
LakewoodAlive announces that Dee has been selected to serve as Grand Marshal for the holiday parade taking place during Light Up Lakewood 2016 on Saturday, December 3, in Downtown Lakewood. A 2008 Lakewood High School graduate who starred in track and cross country, Dee represented his native Democratic Republic of the Congo by running the marathon during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Dee arrived in the United States in 2004 as a refugee from Congo, where a devastating Civil War has resulted in millions of lost lives. Despite enduring immense challenges in his youth, Dee flourished at Lakewood High and also graduated from Denison University, earning All-American status. Dee has since founded Project Kirotshe, which seeks to provide better educational and athletic opportunities for children in Kirotshe, Congo, where he was born.
“You never know when a miracle will happen.” The Honorable Patrick Carroll, Lakewood Municipal Judge, stated this optimistic phrase several times in reference to the eternal hope that any heroin addict can overcome this seemingly insurmountable disease.
Hope served as an overarching theme Thursday evening, Nov. 10, when 90 attendees gathered at Lakewood Public Library for a community forum entitled “The Heroin Epidemic: Understanding Impact and Options.” Presented by LakewoodAlive, this public forum sought to discuss how our collective efforts can make a significant impact on the lives of those impacted by the devastating effects of heroin use.
Moderator William Denihan, CEO for the Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County, led a thoughtful discussion that included both panelist insight and questions submitted by members of the audience. When Denihan asked how
Greetings, first-time Light Up Lakewood attendee. You’re in for a real treat.
Don’t be surprised if your enthusiasm upon reaching Detroit Avenue nears Buddy The Elf levels. Light Up Lakewood – a fun-filled fixture within Lakewood’s downtown district each December for the last decade – represents one of the preeminent holiday events in Northeast Ohio. If it’s not the most wonderful time of the year, it comes awfully close.
But before you join 25,000 of your closest friends at LakewoodAlive’s dazzling community festival on Dec. 3, there are some things you should know. Consider this cheat sheet a gift to be unwrapped prior to the first Saturday in December. Here’s your beginner’s guide to attending Light Up Lakewood 2016.
Lakewood Music Boosters will be hosting the first Rockin’ Reverse Raffle on Friday November 18th at Brennan’s Party Center (13000 Triskett Rd., Cleveland, OH). Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $75 and include one buffet dinner and one ticket to the $2,500 grand prize raffle. Additional dinners are available for $45. With $6000 available in cash prizes, up to 400 people are expected to attend this inaugural event! Entertainment will be provided by Big & Wild Productions.
It’s clear that Issue 64 passed, but by a slim margin of 702 votes (3%). That’s according to the still unofficial Cuyahoga County Board of elections results. Issue 64 was a referendum created by Lakewood voters seeking to repeal the City Hall ordinance adopting the Master Agreement that closed Lakewood Hospital. One-hundred percent of Lakewood elected officials, the Cleveland Clinic, the Lakewood Hospital Association, most of Cuyahoga County officials, nearly every media outlet and nearly every special interest group in Lakewood supported the “For 64” campaign.
In an unprecedented election cycle both nationally and locally, in terms of excitement, election night did not disappoint. From the start, as the results rolled in, the most controversial and most closely watched races were razor thin. At the top of the ticket, Lakewood and Cuyahoga County were unsurprisingly strongly for Clinton, but around 10:30 p.m. the state of Ohio was called for Trump. Locally, Issue 64 (the Lakewood Hospital issue) remained within a 4-6 percentage point spread throughout the night with less than 1,000 votes separating the “for” and “against” camps. Another statewide race worth noting is for Ohio Supreme Court Justice. Lakewoodite John P. O’Donnell ran a strong campaign, but ended up with a 0.6% difference between himself and Pat Fischer.
A Decade of Dazzle: 10th Annual Downtown Light Up Lakewood Event to Spread Holiday Cheer On December 3
Festive, Family-Friendly Community Event Expected to Draw Thousands
It’s a most joyous of Lakewood traditions and it’s back in Downtown Lakewood for a 10th consecutive year. The spirit of the season will come to life with holiday cheer when Light Up Lakewood 2016 takes place on Saturday, December 3.
Presented by LakewoodAlive in conjunction with many generous businesses and organizations, Light Up Lakewood celebrates the season and the richness of the city’s vibrancy. This free, family-friendly event in Downtown Lakewood features a holiday parade, lighting ceremony, winter fireworks, live music, ice carvings, hot chocolate, food trucks, children’s games and much more.
Attendees are invited to stroll Lakewood's downtown district and visit local stores and restaurants while taking in the sights and sounds of one of Northeast Ohio's largest holiday celebrations. Light Up Lakewood serves as a marquee event for the entire region, having drawn an estimated 25,000 guests last year.
300 Attendees, 24 Merchants Participate in Popular Autumn Tradition
The City of Lakewood's Community Relations Advisory Commission (LCRAC) is grateful for all those who braved a beautiful autumn day, with competing events such as the Indian's game as well as the presidential debate, to join their neighbors in LCRAC's annual Welcome to Lakewood Event! It was a fine evening. Those who live, work, and/or play in Lakewood had the opportunity to connect with some of the local non-profit organizations that service our community - and vice versa! More than 40 local organizations participate. The Beck Center, Lakewood's YMCA, and Lakewood's Women's Club represent a few of the organizations that were present, prepared, and ready to involve community members who wanted to learn and do more! It's really something to learn about all the programs these organiztions offer to involve community members. Extra special thanks to our wonderful Mayor Summers and Council Person Cindy Marx who cleared their busy schedules to connect, talk with, and answer questions from community members. Delicious treats (and like the best tea you've ever had) were provided by India Garden, KB Confectioners, The Tea Lab, and Root Cafe! This is a great event for established residents to connect with newcomers and any persons with some interest in Lakewood. Don't worry if you missed it, LCRAC will have other fun, fascinating, important events in 2017 such as the Diversity Potluck, and LCRAC's Community Conversation. We've got some awesome ideas!
The Lakewood Division of Police is offering Lakewood residents a unique opportunity to gain some first-hand information about the role of Lakewood’s safety and law enforcement department.
The October 17 City Council Meeting was called to order with all members present.
Bike Racks Painted Along Detroit Avenue
Distinguished Group of Panelists to Participate in Discussion at the Lakewood Public Library Main Branch; Public Invited to Attend
Free Home Educational Workshop Takes Place from 10 to 12 at Cleveland Lumber Company
In serving the public, my City Council colleagues and I worked hard- and very thoroughly- to put facts ahead of emotions, research options for healthcare in our community, and decide upon the option that offers the most to Lakewood patients and taxpayers over the long term.
State Auditor Report Confirms Cleveland Clinic Paid $9.6 Million, A Fraction Of Hospital Value, For Lakewood Hospital
• The Cleveland Clinic Foundation admits liability to Lakewood of $278 million.
• Clinic records show Clinic will make $11.5 million additional profit each year into the future due to the hospital closure.
• State Auditor Report shows the Clinic paid only $9.6 millionin the purchase of Lakewood Hospital.
• In exchange for only $9.6 million, the Clinic received $108 million or 60% of $180 million fair market value of Lakewood Hospital.
Clinic records prove the Clinic was Liable for $278 million prior to the Master Agreement
Internal planning documents prepared by the Clinic and filed in Court in the pending taxpayer lawsuit on October 5, 2016, prove that the Clinic was liable for required capital improvements and all losses at Lakewood Hospital through 2026. The Clinic’s own documents from 2011 declare the amount of the Clinic’s liability was $278 million beginning in 2017 which would have made Lakewood Hospital a state-of-the-art hospital on par with the Clinic’s other hospitals.
This is at odds with Lakewood Law Director Kevin Butler’s September, 2015 legal opinion in which he stated: “The Cleveland Clinic is not required to cover LHA’s operating losses. And neither LHA nor the Cleveland Clinic is obligated to invest significant capital money into the hospital facility--making major improvements at the hospital is the city’s responsibility.” Butler’s legal opinion was the most important reason cited by City Council when they authorized Butler to negotiate the Master Agreement.
If you’re a Lakewood resident, there are a multitude of local resources at your disposal – you simply need to know where to find them. That’s why LakewoodAlive is hosting Resource Fair 2016 on Thursday, October 20, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Turkish Cultural Center (13303 Madison Avenue).
Like a talented musician amidst a world-class orchestra, it’s not easy to stand out from the crowd at the Spooky Pooch Parade.
For one autumn afternoon each year, Kauffman Park transforms from a picturesque downtown greenspace to an expansive sea of costumed canines. Beagles, bloodhounds and bulldogs become dinosaurs, hot dogs and Darth Vaders. The entertainment value is priceless, and the joy observed on the faces of children and other parade participants (four-legged and otherwise) is even better.
But what about if you’re in it to win it? Just how can you ensure your canine remains conspicuous despite the masses of mutts? There are, after all, various “Best of…” awards to be claimed when the 9th Annual Spooky Pooch Parade – sponsored by Discount Drug Mart and presented by LakewoodAlive – takes place from 12:30 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 15.
The October 3, 2016 City Council Meeting was called to order at 7:45 p.m. by Council President Same O’Leary (Ward 2). All council members were present and both the minutes from the September 19th regular council meeting and the September 26th special joint meeting with the Lakewood Board of Education were quickly disposed of.
Gabby Giffords, former US Representative from Arizona, was in Lakewood Saturday to promote the Clinton for President campaign. US Senator Sherrod Brown, current Senate candidate Ted Strickland, and State Representative Nickie Antonio also spoke on behalf of both Clinton and common sense gun reform.The event took place in front of the Hillary Clinton campaign office, located at the corner of Belle and Detroit.
Popular Costumed Canine Event Returns to Lakewood's Kauffman Park
Every dog has his day and that day is on Saturday, October 15. That's when costumed canines will rule the day in Downtown Lakewood from 12:30 to 4 p.m. during the 9th Annual Spooky Pooch Parade.
Sponsored by Discount Drug Mart and presented by LakewoodAlive, the Spooky Pooch Parade consists of a festival within Kauffman Park (15450 Detroit Avenue), a parade through Lakewood’s Downtown business district on Detroit Avenue and an awards presentation. A favorite Halloween tradition for Northeast Ohio dog lovers and their families, this popular community festival represents one of the only events of its kind within the region, providing a tail-wagging good time for canine and human guests alike.
Satellite navigation is coming to Cleveland-Detroit airspace as part of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) NextGen Metroplex project. Most airplanes already navigate with GPS, but their routes are defined by land-based "navigation aids." Satellite navigation will free routes from these physical constraints and enable the FAA to draw new, more efficient highways in the sky. Benefits include fuel, personnel, and time savings; increased safety, flexibility, capacity, and reliability; and reduced carbon dioxide emissions.
This report is not an official statement of the League of Women Voters. Mayor Bobst's office prepares official minutes.
Over 250 runners, walkers and rollers (participants in wheelchairs and hand cycles) braved the rain and helped raise funds for children with physical disabilities in the Youth Challenge Superhero Dash. The 31st Annual Race Day took place on Saturday, September 17, at Lakewood Park. The event was dedicated in memory of Dave Hardman, former President of the Youth Challenge Board of Trustees.
The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections adopted an innovative electronic program called “VoterNotify” so voters can be informed of the date their ballot is mailed and exactly when their completed ballot arrives at the Board of Elections for processing. So far, over 110,000 voters have submitted Vote by Mail ballot applications for this November’s Presidential Election.
VoterNotify will also send out reminders of election dates and deadlines and other important election related information. To enroll in VoterNotify, visit the Board’s website: www.443VOTE.com to sign-up to receive important text messages and/or email alerts. The Board will also include “I Voted By Mail!” stickers with each Vote by Mail ballot, similar to the ones that are given to voters on Election Day who vote in person.
When a business or building owner succeeds with revitalizing a traditional storefront, the benefits to a neighborhood retail district can be immense, ranging from visual appeal to economic impact to community pride.
LakewoodAlive To Host October Workshops Regarding Wooden Steps, Heating Systems And Bathroom Remodeling
Free Home Educational Workshops Take Place on Oct. 1, Oct. 8 and Oct. 22
The City of Lakewood's Community Relations Advisory Commission is pleased to announce its annual 'Welcome to Lakewood' community event on October 19, 2016, from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. at Garfield Middle School. The event, which was developed by the Lakewood Community Relations Advisory Commission with full support from Lakewood's elected officials, is designed to welcome new residents and community members to our wonderful city. If you are a new/established property owner or renter or if you work and play in the community, the Welcome to Lakewood meet and greet is the place to be! This is a fun and family-friendly event where you can learn more about local civic organizations, services, and ways to get involved in Lakewood.
Upon returning from their August summer recess, Council President O’Leary called the Tuesday, September 6th meeting to order with all members of council in attendance and quickly disposed of the July 18th meeting minutes.
This past week, City Hall’s Director of Finance Jenn Pae made the following false statement concerning the Issue 64 referendum challenge to the Cleveland Clinic agreement: “At risk is more than $100 million of investment in healthcare currently under way.” In fact, the bad agreement pushed by City Hall and Pae results in $107 million in healthcare leaving Lakewood. This can ONLY be stopped by voting AGAINST Issue 64.
Free Home Educational Workshops Take Place on Sept. 17 and Sept. 22
LakewoodAlive's Popular Late-Summer Event Returns to Downtown Lakewood
It's been said that variety is the spice of life. In this case, it's also the catalyst of a tremendous community festival.
More than 180 craft beers representing nearly 50 breweries and 60 wines from 50 wineries will be on hand when the 4th Annual Lakewood Wine & Craft Beer Festival takes place Saturday, Sept. 10, from 5-10 p.m. in the heart of Downtown Lakewood. Sponsored by Sibling Revelry Brewing and presented by LakewoodAlive, the festival has emerged as a much-anticipated tradition to close the summer season, typically drawing a sellout crowd of 2,000 attendees.
The burgeoning wine and craft beer industries, both locally and across the nation, will be on full display within a two-story, open-air parking deck in the heart of Lakewood's downtown district. The festival is held behind the INA Building at 14701 Detroit Avenue. Tickets can be purchased online at WineandCraftBeerFestival.com or at Rozi's Wine House (14900 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood).
In Ohio, we have three safeguards to ensure accurate vote counts: VVPAT, EAP, and a "Noah's Ark" system.
VVPAT. Every Ohio ballot must have a Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT). Ohioans vote on either a paper ballot or an electronic screen that produces a paper record. Either way, you can check your vote on paper, and officials can hand-count votes in audits and recounts.
EAP. Before every general election, each county Board of Elections must prepare an Election Administration Plan (EAP) detailing everything from personnel to facilities, supplies, and security. EAPs are available for public review.
Noah's Ark. Ohio requires that all election aspects be administered by teams of two whose members come from different parties, making ours one of the most secure systems in the nation. Bipartisan poll workers count votes for their polling place, sign the results, and post them for the public. A bipartisan team then delivers all the ballots and records to the Board of Elections, where they are double-locked in a room that can only be opened by both the Director and Deputy Director, who must be from different parties. Finally, a bipartisan procedure is followed when mailed-in and provisional ballots are counted ten days after Election Day, for recounts, and for audits.
Dear Lakewood Observer reader,
Four Separate Entities Fuel Successful Painting Endeavor
Lakewood is a great community and it’s only getting better. It’s one of the strongest and best-run cities in Northeast Ohio. Our schools are strong and we’re transforming our parks. Our housing market is among the most attractive in the region. Our City government has met big challenges head-on and protected taxpayers, going 35 years without an income tax increase. Dozens of new businesses have opened. We’ve attracted young families and retained retiring residents. Things are moving in the right direction.
These are photos from the four days.
LakewoodAlive Completes Volunteer Projects With Bentley Wealth Management Of Raymond James, H2O, And LNLC
Mary Ann Jamieson found herself in a difficult situation. No longer able to keep up with outdoor maintenance for the house she’d occupied for 60 years, the Lakewood resident watched helplessly as the yard at her childhood home became increasingly overgrown. That is, until a group of volunteers came to her rescue.
Like a protective shield, it’s a first line of defense, serving as a barrier against wind, rain, snow and other natural elements. Your home’s roof is important and it behooves you as a homeowner to know what’s overhead.
At its July 18 meeting, Lakewood City Council received and filed a communication from at-large Council Member Tom Bullock that requested the Administration to provide an exact enumeration of all direct costs involved with the taxpayer lawsuit Ed Graham et al v City of Lakewood et al. The request also includes indirect costs incurred when the city fills public records requests associated with the lawsuit.
Citizens generally expect a certain level of frankness and honesty from their elected representatives. Unfortunately, we are witnessing an era in which lies by elected officials are the first recourse in any public discussion.
In 2015, Mayor Summers first said that Lakewood Hospital would not close. Days later, he announced the closure of the hospital, the loss of Lakewood’s largest employer and the loss of $7M in annual charitable services to the underserved. In his announcement, Summers made a false claim that there would be a “$120M investment” in Lakewood and claimed the closure was somehow “Good News.” That same month, when Summers was first asked about MetroHealth’s proposal concerning Lakewood Hospital, Summers lied about that, too, in an apparent cover-up of what we later discovered were two Metro proposals that he suppressed.
Thousands of visitors came to Cleveland last month to be part of the Republican National Convention. Most came for serious business – whether delegates on the floor or protesters outside. However, one group came not for business, but for comedy – albeit comedy with a message.
As you are likely aware, Republican candidate Donald Trump has generated tremendous controversy in his campaign, particularly in regards to Muslims. The Arab American Institute Foundation decided rather than doing traditional programming at this year’s RNC, it would put on a comedy show. “BANNED: Dangerously Funny Arab Americans and American Muslims” was held at the Hanna Theatre in Playhouse Square. It gave delegates and other convention attendees a chance to have a good laugh during this election cycle of rising bigotry.
Council President and Ward II Councilman Sam O’Leary called the July 18, 2016 Council meeting to order at 7:34 P.M.
The first order of business was to recognize the Grand Marshal and award winners from the Independence Day Parade. The Mayor asked Council to join him in recognizing Rear Admiral Janet Russell, a Lakewood native, on her professional accomplishments, and for honoring the City for serving as this year’s Grand Marshal of the parade. Admiral Russell Graduated from Lakewood High School in 1979. She has served as a lawyer for the Judge Advocates Generals Core her entire career, and is one of only 34 women with the rank of Admiral.
Council President Sam O’Leary called the July 5, 2016 Council meeting to order at 7:32 P.M. The first item discussed was the proposal for the revetment on the lake shore of The Meridian Condominiums. If the proposal were to pass it would help the owners of the Meridian pay for the project by assessing the total to their property taxes to be paid out over 20 years, rather than up front. A number of people were present to speak on the matter, as they have been for the several weeks this has been a topic with Council. Lively comments were made on both sides of the issue from the four people who spoke, one of which was the project engineer.
The city of Lakewood is taking another big step in its goal to be among the most bicycle-friendly cities in the country.
For a span of six hours on Saturday, July 9, Detroit Avenue was no longer simply the main street of Downtown Lakewood. Rather, this bustling avenue transformed into an urban playground for families, friends, festival-goers, runners, beer enthusiasts and music lovers alike to celebrate a vibrant city and gorgeous summer evening with members of their extended community.
LEG UP Lakewood (Let’s Erase Graffiti and UnPaint Lakewood) Aims to Help Lakewood’s Business Owners Take a Proactive Stance and Explore Graffiti Solutions
Part One of this series (Lakewood Observer, 6 June 2016) connected the “community health foundation” inked in the 2015 Master Agreement that dissolved Lakewood Hospital, the genesis of the Lakewood Active Living Task Force (LALTF), and the City government insiders who are using their position to bring it to fruition. In much the same way that the process of closing the hospital was kept hidden behind council chamber doors, the establishment of a community health and wellness foundation is also proceeding without any oversight. At stake is an estimated $32 million of proceeds from the sale of the public hospital's parts. Not surprisingly, some of the same individuals that occupied positions on the Lakewood Hospital Association and the City of Lakewood used their influence to ostensibly position themselves and shared interests to benefit from the demise of the hospital. Part Two will investigate the findings of the LALTF report and find that- not only did the only poll of Lakewood residents in the report find that 79% of residents were “very satisfied or satisfied” with recreation opportunities- but that it has the hallmarks of a fraudulent “economic development” scheme.
Council President and Ward II Councilman Sam O'Leary called the June 20, 2016 meeting of Council to order with a shout out to Cleveland's newest Champions.
Mr. Lee Mesenheimer watched with approval from his lawn chair as the committed crew of volunteers mowed his lawn and trimmed his bushes. The elderly resident of Lakewood’s Olive Avenue knew his yard was in good hands.