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City Hall Observed

City Council met on Monday, June 17th after meetings of the Finance Committee and the Committee of the Whole.

Angela Byington was introduced to the Committee of the Whole where they were able to ask questions before recommending her to the full council to confirm her as Mayor George’s selection for new Director of Planning & Development. She was later confirmed and sworn in at the council meeting.

Byington expressed excitement about working in a more “urban” community than Perkins, Ohio where she had been employed previously. She described Lakewood as “Vibrant, unique and progressive." She addressed the fact that Lakewood has combined the Planning and Development roles which is not how the majority of cities are organized. She has held a similar position elsewhere and has previous experience in Sandusky and Lorain as well.

The Finance Committee meeting was 9 minutes long.

The highlight of the evening was during the council meeting when Councilman Baker’s “Complete Streets” legislation was introduced. It is co-sponsored by multiple members of council and was vocally supported by six members of the community. The proposed ordinance would create a public forum for any and all changes made to roads, sidewalks, bike lanes and other infrastructure.

Mayor George spoke sharply and passionately about how the city employs many trained professionals in these areas and that they should be entrusted with these decisions. Councilpeople Schachner and Baker responded by stating that they do not believe the current wording of the ordinance hampers the administration’s ability to make recommendations and decisions.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 13, Posted 10:05 AM, 06.19.2024

New Police Officers Sworn In

Chief Kevin Fischer and Mayor George welcome new police officers Anna Durczak and Dennis Fischer. 

On June 5, Mayor George swore in new Officers Anna Durczak and Dennis Fischer to the Lakewood Police Department. Congratulations and welcome to each of you!

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Volume 20, Issue 13, Posted 10:05 AM, 06.19.2024

Lakewood Fire and Paramedics Receive Grant For Knox Boxes

The Healthy Lakewood Foundation has awarded the Lakewood Fire Department and Lakewood Neighborhood Paramedic a $4,279 grant for the installation of Knox boxes, which are devices that provide secure and quick access for EMS and fire responders. 

It acts as a lock box/key. It allows first respponders to quckly gain access to schools, office buiildings, etc. without destructioin to doors and windows. 

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Volume 20, Issue 13, Posted 10:05 AM, 06.19.2024

A Big Thank You To Lakewood From Supplies4Success

Here we are celebrating the end of another school year – which of course includes celebrating the generosity of our Lakewood community.

For the past decade Supplies4Success has run a summertime city-wide school supply drive supporting our K-12 grad students. There are several collection methods: local businesses and churches act as collection sites where people can drop off items throughout the summer, H2O campers recycle gently use items, and you can even donate funds directly for purchasing and leave the shopping to us!

Once items have been collected, a group of volunteers get together to sort, count, and box up the supplies for delivery in time for the start of school. Items are available at every building, and there are no financial requirements for students to access these supplies.

The committee wanted to report some exciting numbers from last summer's collection. In 2023 we collected over 16,000 items to create supply closets in each of our schools. This number includes 5,000+ pencils, 2,500+ pens, 1,400+ folders, and so much more. If you want to know more about the impact of these stocked supply closets in each building, take it from our teachers: "Harrison Elementary School embraces diversity and inclusion and strives to create a warm and supportive environment for all our students including many new immigrants and refugees. Students can "shop" for backpacks, lunch bags, and other needed supplies. Equipping new Harrison students in need with school supplies fosters a sense of belonging, promotes academic engagement, and alleviates a financial burden on their families. We are so grateful for the donations. Recently we welcomed a new student to Harrison, and he was able to pick out a brand-new Spiderman backpack. His eyes widened in excitement like he couldn't believe it was real!"-- Tiffany Hickey & Jeannette Sgambellone. We hear stories like this each year from all of our buildings. We hope to take the pressure off of families and teachers to make sure students have the needed supplies to succeed academically.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Observations On The District: The Good, The Better And The What The Heck: Part 4

Good: According to policy 0165.2 The Board can call a special meeting. “A special meeting of the Board may be called by the Board President, Treasurer, or by any two (2) Board members” It gives "at least twenty-four (24) hours advance notice to the news media that have requested notification, except in the event of an emergency requiring immediate official action.” “Special meetings of the Board shall be public. R.C. 121.22” Notification of a special meeting is posted on the LCSD website on the calendar and you can sign-up to get notifications by emailing kent.zemen@lakewoodcityschools.org or calling 216-529-4096. Notifications must be posted at least 24 hrs before the meeting time.

Best: Summer break is here and now our community turns to the extraordinary Recreation Dept. headed by Leslie Krogman. Baseball, softball and the outdoor Lakewood pools. Youth and adult sports, and so many more choices like CSI for ages 7-11, chess lessons K-8, virtual handyman skills for adults and so much more. https://tinyurl.com/mryh9hrw Hundreds of participants and volunteers keep the Lakewood traditions alive and create incredible summers to remember. Don’t forget the other summer traditions of the July 4th parade in the morning and The Lakewood Project concert at night leading into the best fireworks show in northern Ohio.

What the heck:

On February 29, 2024 the board held a special meeting. The agenda was “Planning Session.” Going to minutes for a bit more detail: “The Superintendent and Cabinet members provided Board members with an update on matters pertaining to the 2023-2024 school year and discussed 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Lakewood Public Library Programs

Literary Cleveland Presents:  

Write Now – Poetry Writing Workshop with Instructor Corey Miller 

Saturdays: July 6, 13, 20 and 27, 2024   10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. in the Main Library Multipurpose Room  

Participants will generate new writing in this free four-week practical workshop that explores a different element and form of poetry each Saturday. Registration is required and begins on June 1, 2024.  Visit lakewoodpubliclibrary.org or call (216) 226-8275 ext. 110.

Documentary - "Before Stonewall" (1984)                                                     

Presented by Tom Stebel from the LGBT Community Center of Cleveland 

Saturday, June 22, 2024 at 6:00 p.m. (87 minutes) in the Main Library Auditorium         

The Stonewall Inn in New York City is considered by many to be the birthplace of the gay rights movement.Through personal interviews and archival footage, this documentary reveals the history of the LGBTQ community prior to the Stonewall riots.  

Meet the Author - "The Beginning Was the End: Devo in Ohio" 

Book by David Giffels 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Lakewood Public Library Upcoming Programs-Children’s And Youth Services

Adventure Begins at Your Library 

For all children and youth from birth up to those entering twelfth grade. Read for fun and rewards. Participants will be entered into weekly drawings for prizes and gift cards. Readers can check online or in person. Finishers receive a certificate of completion and a new book to keep. Registration is required. 

Friday, May 10, 2024 through Monday, August 12, 2024 at the Main Library and Madison Branch 

Adventure Begins at Your Library Scavenger Hunt 

For all ages. Children are invited to participate in the Summer Reading Club scavenger hunt by looking for pictures of road and traffic symbols they might find on their next adventure. The pictures are found throughout the Children’s and Youth Services area of the library. The hunt lasts all summer. When you finish, turn in your scavenger hunt sheet to be entered in a drawing for a prize. No registration is required.  

Friday, May 10, 2024 through Monday, August 12, 2024 at the Main Library and Madison Branch 

Just Baby 'N Me 

For You and Your Birth to 24-Month-Old Baby 

Just Baby 'N Me is a lap-sit story time ideal for babies from birth through early walkers. The focus is on rhymes, songs, finger plays and exploring short books together. Registration is required. Register for each session separately.  

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Rotary Awards Scholarships To Five High School Seniors

At the Rotary Club scholarship presentation on June 3 were (from left) Leslie Favre-Krogman, club president; students Hannah Schmidt, Leah Campbell, Zen Bowers, Stephen Tirpak, and Jon Francher, scholarship chair. (Not pictured: Mimi Nee.)

Five area graduating seniors were awarded scholarships by the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River at its weekly lunch meeting on June 3. Recipients include Mimi Nee, Leah Campbell, and Zen Bowers of Lakewood High School, Stephen Tirpak of St. Ignatius High School, and Hannah Schmidt of Saint Joseph Academy.

Each will receive $3,000 Donald W. Strang, Jr. Scholarship awards from the Lakewood-Rocky River Rotary Foundation. This $15,000 scholarship program is part of nearly $78,000 that the local Rotary Club donates to community programs each year.

In addition to demonstrating academic achievement and potential, these five Rotary scholarship winners were chosen for their character, as well as extracurricular and community involvement.

Having immigrated to the U.S. just 10 years ago, Mimi Nee’s discovery that she could excel in advanced placement language classes inspired her to seek to become the first in her family to attend college. She accumulated over 100 hours of community service as her way of giving back to a community that supported her family in their adjustment to this country.

Mimi served four years on Lakewood’s Student Council and was active in LHS’s Help 2 Others program. She was recognized for her sportsmanship in volleyball and lacrosse. She will attend The Ohio State University to study health sciences, aiming to become a physician’s assistant.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Legal Aid Is Hosting A Know Your Rights Presentation In Lakewood

The Legal Aid Society of Cleveland and the Cuyahoga County Human Rights Commission will be hosting a special Know Your Rights Presentation on June 26 at 9:30 am at the Cove Community Center, 12525 Lake Avenue, Lakewood, OH 44107. This FREE presentation will help provide Lakewood residents with the information that they need to protect their rights in the areas of housing, employment, and public accommodations.  

This presentation is made possible through partnerships with the City of Lakewood, Cove Community Center, Cuyahoga County Human Rights Commission, and Lakewood Community Services Center. 

For more information go to: lasclev.org/06262024/

If Lakewood residents need further assistance beyond this informational presentation, help is available at Legal Aid Brief Advice Clinics. A full listing of Brief Advice Clinic dates and locations are available at lasclev.org/category/all-events/clinics/. Residents can also apply online at lasclev.org/apply-for-free-legal-aid/ or call 888-817-3777 during most business hours.     

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Three Arches Foundation Welcomes New Board Members; Gavlak Elected Chair Of The Foundation's Board Of Directors

Three Arches Foundation, a community-focused grant making foundation, welcomed three new members to its board of directors and elected Gina Gavlak as its new chair. Domonic Hopson, Selina Pagán, and Lee Peña joined the 19-member volunteer board. The Foundation also recognized the leadership contributions of outgoing chair Mary Anne Crampton and departing directors Mike Carlin, Jay Carson, and Jeff Milbourn.

Gavlak will lead the Foundation as it carries out its work of investing in the advancement of solutions that impact equitable access to care, specifically those that remove barriers and improve behavioral and physical health. With over 30 years of experience in leadership, program and fund development, advocacy, and direct patient care as a registered nurse, she has focused her career on increasing access to high-quality, affordable, and equitable health care for everyoneGavlak is vice president of development for Neighborhood Family Practice (NFP) where she leads fund development, community engagement, and advocacy initiatives. She also serves as president of the North Coast Health Foundation, a supporting organization which works to advance the mission of NFP by raising awareness of services and fostering philanthropic support.

Hopson is president and CEO of Neighborhood Family Practice, a Federally Qualified Health Center delivering high quality, affordable primary and preventative health care in a medical home setting with seven locations across Cleveland’s west side neighborhoods and Lakewood. Throughout his career, Hopson has led efforts to enhance community health outcomes and address health disparities.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

S.O.S. - Save Our Seniors: Support Property Tax Reform

In the last issue Tristan Rader wrote an article describing some of the duties and responsibilities of our state legislators. He listed quite a few responsibilities including climate change, worker’s rights, marijuana legislation etc. However, he failed to mention that our state representatives have direct control over our real estate property taxes in Ohio.

Even though we pay our property taxes to Cuyahoga County, the methods and formulas for those taxes are controlled by our elected officials in Columbus. Very few politicians want to discuss lowering our property taxes for one main reason. In most counties, 65-75% of our property tax goes to fund public schools. Most politicians are deathly afraid to upset the school teachers unions who are huge supporters and contributors to their campaigns.

The sad reality is that every three years our home evaluations increase and the public schools receive an automatic increase in funding that has not be voted on by the taxpayers. Because of this taxing formula, seniors are being driven out of their homes. Property values are going through the roof and while it may be a windfall for those individuals selling their homes, it is an incredible burden to the rest of us. Many of us seniors want to stay in the homes where we raised our families and  have resided for many years. The increase of value in our homes will not be realized until we sell. In the meantime, the pressure from rising costs in food, fuel and medical care combined with high property taxes is devastating.

JOIN THE MOVEMENT! - Citizens for Property Tax Reform is attempting to rally seniors in Cuyahoga County to put pressure on our politicians to make changes in the property tax structure.

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

The Abandoned Car Wash

For years, I walked past an abandoned car wash every morning on my way to work. A few years back, it did great business for a while, then was deserted. Re-opened a few times, but never stayed in business for more than an afternoon.

  I distinctly remember its Grand Opening, on a December morning. Giant bow across the front. Every vehicle in the region made its way to the car wash that day. The proprietor would be on his knees the entire time, making sure each vehicle was thoroughly cleaned. Having run his new business for hours, the proprietor fell asleep on site. But after that first glorious day, it would open only sporadically. The proprietor had his hands full with many ventures in the area.

     The sounds were awesome: Vroom-Squeak-Scrub-(indecipherable muttering). Such sweet music.

      As soon as my presence was noticed, the sounds would mute, but resumed when his sister came by with that jeep of hers:

“NO GIRLS! Thems too tall.”

“That’s discrimidation! We’re getting a lawyer!”

    In hindsight, I wish I’d been disciplined enough to heed that voice in the back of my mind: This is a limited time offer. How I wish I’d forced myself to stop and watch my Children’s beautiful imaginations soaring. No matter what household task I thought I needed to get to. My life isn’t any better today because I completed those tasks, and the car wash will never reopen.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Mayor's Corner: Taking Care Of Our Buildings

Lakewood’s status as both a charming, historic place and as Ohio’s most densely populated city helps make our community unique and full of activity. Over 50,000 people call Lakewood’s 6.7 square miles home, with more than 32,000 housing units (most of which were built before World War II).  At City Hall, we are laser-focused on ensuring that buildings in Lakewood remain safe, especially with so many people living in and visiting our city, and considering the age of structures. With all this in mind, the work of our Division of Building and Housing is crucial to the quality of life in Lakewood.

Lakewood’s building and housing team, led by Commissioner Chris Parmelee, has a lot on their plate. A given year finds them overseeing a wide range of work on residential and commercial buildings and even food trucks. Our team of inspectors regularly reviews the condition of buildings across Lakewood and guides those looking to make repairs, alterations, or new builds.

Last year alone, our inspectors reviewed and issued over 2,700 building permits – these can include anything from the simple installation of a new water heater to the construction of an entirely new building. Building and Housing also oversees the annual licensing for owners of rental housing, which involves over 3,200 landlords.   This work on rental units also includes a full interior inspection every time title changes hands on an individual unit. 

For all single and two-family homes (whether rental or owner-occupied), the City performs an exterior inspection on a triennial basis. Our inspectors use a four-point scale, with a “1” finding no exterior code violations and a 4 finding “significant disrepair” with multiple major violations. Recently, we realized that we needed a similar level of regular review of Lakewood’s commercial buildings and worked to build new policies.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

State Representative Michael J. Skindell Named Grand Marshal Of The Lakewood Fourth Of July Parade

Lakewood Mayor Meghan F. George announced on June 6th that State Representative Michael J. Skindell will serve as the grand marshal of the city’s annual Fourth of July parade.

The parade is scheduled to step off on Lake Avenue at Kenneth Drive at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, July 4, 2024, and conclude at Lakewood Park.

Representative Skindell has been serving the Lakewood community for over 25 years. During his time as Lakewood Councilman-at-Large from 1998 to 2002, he was chairman of the Council’s Rules and Ordinances Committee and he served on the Finance, Housing, and Public Works Committees.

He has been a member of the Ohio House of Representatives in District 13 from 2002 to 2010, and again from 2018 to present. He also represented Ohio Senate District 23 from 2010 to 2018. This will be Skindell’s last year serving as a State Representative. In January of this year, Representative Skindell announced he would not be seeking re-election.

In addition to his public service, Representative Skindell serves on the Lakewood Chamber of Commerce, the Lakewood Democratic Club, and the Cuyahoga County Democratic Party. He is a former member of the Board of Trustees of the Barton Senior Center and Westerly Senior Apartments in Lakewood and the Lakewood Jaycees, where he served as president in 1999.

“Representative Skindell has served the Lakewood community for over 25 years,” said Mayor Meghan F. George. “We are honored to have him serve as the grand marshal of the parade. As Representative Skindell leaves office at the end of the year, we thank him for all the contributions he has made to the Lakewood community and wish him all the best in his next chapter.”

Joining in the parade will be musical favorites: the Lakewood High School Ranger Marching Band, St. Edward Marching Eagles, and The Red Hackle Pipe Band.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Grant Green Team Spurs Change

The Lakewood City Schools continued to ramp up its efforts this school year to be a more eco-friendly organization. Grant Elementary is a shining example of making our staff and students aware of their environmental impacts and learning what they can do to help make a difference.

Led by student wellness Julie May, the Grant Green Team (grades 3-5) has implemented several initiatives this school year to lead the school on a path to greater sustainability practices.

The Lakewood City Schools continued to ramp up its efforts this school year to be a more eco-friendly organization. Grant Elementary is a shining example of making our staff and students aware of their environmental impacts and learning what they can do to help make a difference.  Led by student wellness Julie May, the Grant Green Team (grades 3-5) has implemented several initiatives this school year to lead the school on a path to greater sustainability practices.

These efforts include recycling paper throughout the building and in the cafeteria, recycling GoGo Squeeze-like pouches, creating a share table for unopened and uneaten food from the school, composting (via Rust Belt Riders), and using compostable silverware and trays. All these efforts were made possible by a $2,600 grant the District received from the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District as well as support from Nutrition Services.

Students play a crucial role in the green efforts. Each classroom has two student recycling steward who monitor the recycling bin daily and give weekly reports on progress. Older students have given presentations at lunch to younger students, educating them on proper recycling and composting and their impact on the Earth. This not only fosters a sense of community but also ensures the sustainability efforts are ingrained in the school culture for years to come. It also is a great opportunity for the older students to build their leadership and communication skills.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

H20 Clothing Drive Fans: The Wait Is Over!

The blue bins are in place at all three fire stations and at Cove Community Center, waiting to be filled with clothing donations.
 
If you are not familiar with this project, H2O collects clothing donations for several weeks, then our young volunteers prepare them for a one-day Super Sale. Items are sold at EXTREMELY low cost as a service to the community. In addition to learning about the value of affordable clothes for people, H2O campers learn about the impacts of textiles on the environment.
 
This project is a staple of Summer Service Camp, and we hope you will donate!

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Dr. G's Lakewood Ranger Round-Up: Recap Of A Fabulous Year In Ranger Sports

Emily Potoczak with fellow Scholar Athlete Award winner Hutch Reed.

At the risk of leaving out many fabulous moments, here are, in no particular order, some of my favorites from the 2023/24 Lakewood Ranger sports campaign. Now, the memories...

QB Avery Holt led the Rangers to a heart-stopping 1 point win over Clearview, throwing 3 long touchdown passes but actually caught the game winner as time expired on reverse WR pass from Alex Symons. (Avery then kicked the extra point). Donnie Mikuluk in later games and Chanceler Moses this night got the tough years, and Jaylen Chappell and Alex were the deep threats.

The resurgent Ranger Volleyball team had many big wins, perhaps none more satisfying than the Holy Name match. Olivia Baker, Sophia Zarbo, Emily Potoczak (pictured with fellow Scholar Athlete Award winner Hutch Reed) and Audrey McNulty led a great team effort.

The Boys Soccer team not only won the GLC-Wes--keyed by a huge defeat of Buckeye--but also went over to St. Edward on an early, chilly Saturday morning and left with a 2-0 victory and the Community Cup.

Girls soccer competed well despite many close losses, but had big wins over Normandy and Midview.

The Boys Basketball team stormed back from a 15 point deficit to win in overtime at Buckeye--keyed by Drew Jablonowski and Lucas Seguine. Junior Luke Vannucci set the 3-point record, and the squad won two tournament games, including a thriller over Hudson in the second round.

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

President’s Page: The 411 On 420 In 44107

Image credit Julia Teichmann via Pixabay

Hi Neighbors! Cheeky headlines aside, I know many folks have been wondering about adult-use, or recreational cannabis sales in Lakewood, so I thought I’d…uh…clear the air.

The short answer is that the City of Lakewood is ready for business!

June 3rd – Lakewood City Council passed Ordinance 42-2023 which allows for the permitting of adult-use dispensaries.

June 6th – Lakewood’s citizen-led Planning Commission heard the first two applications for mixed-use distribution from the two current medical marijuana dispensaries.

June 7th – the State of Ohio’s Division of Cannabis Control (DCC) began accepting applications for mixed-use licenses.

September 7th – deadline for the DCC to issue provisional licenses. All Ohio adult-use dispensaries must have a license from the DCC to operate legally. 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program HAS GONE DIGITAL!

A big change this year for the program. Seniors are now able to sign up online. Requirements are the same in that you must be 60 years of age or older and meet a certain income criteria but the process is more streamlined in that you can use your smart devices to sign up and to use your vouchers.

Go to www.aging.ohio.gov for the details and a link to the application. If you need assistance please feel free to contact us at 216-529-5005 and we will help you with the process.

Susan Hijjawi is the Manager of the Senior Services Division of Aging.

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

How To Safely And Legally Navigate Bike Lanes

About those bike lines you’re increasingly seeing around Lakewood and the Greater Cleveland area...many communities have added bike lanes to their roadways for the specific, exclusive use of cyclists. Some are “protected” with bollards (as on the stretch of road between Clifton and Lake Roads connecting Lakewood and Rocky River), some are simply painted stripes and a bike image with a directional arrow on the pavement.

Cyclists have the right of way when riding in a bike lane, and motor vehicles cannot travel in them. However, if the lane is clear of cyclists, a motorist may cross a bike lane to make a turn, access parking, or enter or exit a roadway.

No vehicle, except for a bicycle, can stand or be parked in a bike lane or in any way impede bike traffic.

When there is a bike lane present, a cyclist may still choose to ride on the road, “taking the lane.” Adult cyclists have a legal right to ride on the road in Ohio (except on divided, controlled access freeways).

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Neighborhood Leadership Development Program & Community Development Corporation Leadership Program Seek 2024 Applicants

NLDP Session

If you are passionate, committed and dedicated to taking an active role in improving your community, you may be excited by, and ready for, one of two valuable leadership development programs. NLDP and CDCLP are programs of the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation. Both programs are at no cost to participants.

The Neighborhood Leadership Development Program (NLDP), for 17 years, has offered community engagement leadership training for residents of Cleveland, and its inner ring suburbs, who are working on projects in the City of Cleveland and who are determined to make a positive impact on their communities.

The Community Development Corporation Leadership Program (CDCLP) just graduated its third cohort. CDCLP is the Cleveland area’s only leadership program specifically designed for Community Development Corporation Executive level leadership.

Both programs are currently seeking applicants for their 2024 cohorts.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Meet Me At Cove

Chitra Walker

Community Resource Specialist

Lakewood Area Collaborative, Division of Youth

Chitra is a dedicated and deeply involved community member. She moved to the United States from India in 1972. With the help of friends, she pursued higher education and eventually settled in Northeast Ohio in 1982, where she raised her family, and built a career in healthcare administration from which she retired in 2012. 

Active in her community, Chitra has volunteered for various organizations including the City of Lakewood's Community Relations Advisory Commission, the League of Women Voters, Lakewood Chapter and as a founding board member of the Healthy Lakewood Foundation. She is also a volunteer peer coach, supporting families affected by substance use disorders. Her dedication to community involvement and her advocacy for understanding and kindness reflect her belief in the power of collective action and conversation. For almost two years, Chitra has worked part-time as a community resource specialist in the City of Lakewood's Lakewood Area Collaborative, Division of Youth and will be retiring at the end of this month.

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Volume 20, Issue 12, Posted 1:36 AM, 06.19.2024

Congratulations, Class Of 2024

On Sunday, July 2, 2024, 313 amazing graduates received their diplomas at our 176th Commencement Ceremony in the Civic Auditorium, surrounded by family, friends, and staff.
 
The event featured inspiring speeches from students Owen Rumsey, Alex Krankowski, and Edie Barcelona, as well as words of wisdom from Principal Joy Morgan, Superintendent Maggie Niedzwiecki, and Board of Education President Michael J. Callahan.

Special recognitions were given to the 66 Hawthorne Medal recipients for achieving a 4.0 or higher GPA, our four brave graduates entering the military, and various honor societies and music and athletic groups. The LHS Chamber Orchestra and Chamber Choir provided beautiful music to honor our graduates as well.

We couldn't be prouder of our graduates and wish them all the best in their future endeavors!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Kiwanis Awards 15 Scholarships To Graduating Lakewood Seniors

The scholarship winners 2024.

Lakewood Kiwanis Scholarship Foundation is proud to announce our 2024 recipients for this year’s graduating high school seniors. The following 15 graduates are being awarded thirteen $10,000 and two $5000 for vocational schools. We consider their academic, citizenship and leadership abilities. Thank you to all the applicants and their families. This scholarship fund is funded through the efforts of The Kiwanis Club of Lakewood. The Lakewood Kiwanis Hootenanny Dance and legacy donations were just two of our major fundraisers.

The winners of the 2024 Lakewood Kiwanis Scholarships are: Rowan Brown-Lakewood HS, Kaileigh Burton-Lakewood HS, William (Liam) Craighead-St. Ignatius, Rosemary Cronin-Lakewood HS, Ava Donaldson-Lakewood HS, Yasmine Elhachdani-Lakewood HS, Jason Haklaj-Lakewood HS, Edward Horton-Lakewood HS, Safa Jabarkhil-Lakewood HS, Mimi Née-Lakewood HS, Hannah Schmidt-St Joseph, Zoe Schmidt-St Joseph, Hannah Watkins-Lakewood HS, Cameron Wereb-Lakewood HS, Mary Grace Wirst-Magnificat.

The Kiwanis Club of Lakewood is the leading service organization in Lakewood and we are celebrating over 100 years of service. Along with our scholarships, we also support Harding Builders Club, K Kids Club at Horace Mann and Horizon B&A Care at Harrison and Emerson.

We welcome new volunteers and new members to continue giving to our youth. Please consider joining our club. Look  over our web page 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Congratulations Lakewood High School 2024 Graduates

Evelisse Evie Abderrazza 
Naseer Abdul Rahim Zai 
Mufeed Abushatara
Amily Abuzahriyeh
Leena Adams
Aseel Albadarin
Akram Ali
Moyeen Ali
Farhad Ali Shah
Elisabeth Grey Alleman
Maria Alrahhal
Tala Altaei
Ava Andjeski
Gift Angel Anya
Rachel Aoun
Lay Htoo Arrow
David Awkar
Aaliyah Aziz
Caroline Baas
Kayla Baire
Annabelle Baker
Olivia Baker
Aidan Bangert
Meredith Edie Barcelona
Ronan Barley
Giada Barricelli
Ryan Beaver
Olivia Behun
Adam Benhaddou
Haley Benjamin
Tirhas Berakhi
Cassandra Griffin Berry

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Mayor's Corner: Human Services Department Is A Testament To The Spirit Of Lakewood

The City of Lakewood provides many highly visible services to our residents, from the public works department who are always out and about improving and maintaining things to our police and fire department who patrol our streets and respond to emergencies in vehicles and uniforms we all readily observe. One department that can fly under the radar but also provides a major benefit for the people of Lakewood is our Human Services Department.

In Lakewood, we are proud that our concept of providing services also extends to the deep and important work done by our Human Services Department. That includes work at Cove Community Center and in homes across the city. Human Services Director Chad Berry and his team provide an impressive breadth of support to our seniors, youth, families in need, and those living on the edge and facing crisis.

On any day at Cove, you might find a social gathering for Lakewood residents (everything from a Leap Year Dance Party to Breakfast with a Bunny); a financial literacy class; or the Human Services team figuring out an emergency plan for a resident whose heat went out or who lacks air conditioning on a sweltering day. That is just the tip of the iceberg, and it would be impossible to list all their efforts and impact in a single column.

In 2023 alone, an average of 150 community members came through the doors of Cove Community Center daily to participate in activities and programming. Seniors and family room participants checked in to our Human Services programs close to 29,000 times. Nearly 19,000 home meals were delivered, and over 12,800 congregate meals were served. The work of the Human Services department is a testament to the spirit of Lakewood and how deeply we care for and lift each other up.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Middle School & LHS Mock Trial Teams Shine In Competition

LHS Mock Trial team member Delano Yeung won a Best Witness award.

MIDDLE SCHOOL MOCK TRIAL SHOWCASE

By Lisa Batkiewicz

Garfield and Harding participated in the statewide Middle School Mock Trial Showcase sponsored by the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education last month in at the State Courthouse in Columbus and came away with many awards, including Best Attorney and Best Witness.

Garfield’s three teams together won three of six possible Best Attorney awards and three of six possible Best Witness awards. Harding’s two teams won two  Best Attorney awards and              one Best Witness award. 

Garfield’s Best Attorneys winners were Tyler Kemp, Avery Spahr, and Adam Tanina. Harding’s Best Attorneys were Julia Thomas and Ingrid Matera. Garfield’s Best Witnesses awardees were  Cory Clemens, Zsofi Flasher, and Henry Trefethen. Harding’s Best Witness was Harper Haney.

Forty-three teams from districts across Ohio competed over three days, and only 16 teams scored in the top tier of three scoring tiers. The Garfield Ranger Team received the highest rating of Superior. Garfield Gold and Purple Teams as well as Harding Team 1 received a rating of Outstanding and Harding Team 2 received a rating of Excellent.

This year the Middle School Mock Trials were based on the book “The Giver” by Lois Lowry in which a teenager in a dystopian society risks his well-being and goes against the rules of his community to save the life of a small child. 

Each middle school team subdivides into a prosecution and a defense squad, and prepares for two different trials against other Ohio middle schools. Students take on the roles of attorneys, witnesses, and bailiff/timers. The trials take place in front of real attorneys who act as trial judges and who rate teams on case understanding, professional demeanor, oratory skills, and understanding of trial technique and courtroom procedure.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Lakewood Police And Fire Departments To Host Summer Safety Days For Children 3 Through 12

The Lakewood Police Department and Lakewood Fire Department will be hosting a Summer Safety Days Program for children ages 3-12 and their parents at Madison Park.  Children participating in this program will gain a better understanding of safety as well as engage in personal interaction with safety forces. The three-hour program will be offered a few times throughout the summer for two different age groups. Each child must be accompanied by an adult to this program. Pre-registration is required. There is a limit of 25 children per session.

Summer Safety Days will take place on the following dates in 2024:

Wednesday, June 26
Tuesday, July 23
Tuesday, August 13

Each date will feature two sessions:
Morning (10 AM-12 PM) for 3 to 7 year-olds
Afternoon (1 PM – 3 PM) for 8 to 12 year-olds

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Starr Gazer

JUNE 

ARIES: The lucky duo, Sun/Jupiter are in the same house again this month for all signs. The Ram has the rays beaming in your neighborhood, siblings, short visits & travel, go visit Dad.

TAURUS: June has the Bull bringing in plenty of greenbacks. Take Dad out to dinner, you can afford it. If he’s passed on, bring a six-pack & flowers to his grave.

GEMINI:  The Twins, it’s all about you, for quite some time now. Jupiter just entered the sign of Gemini, & will hang out there until June 9th, 2025. Take advantage of the next year, double your pleasure.

CANCER: Hey Crab, you’ve got a lot of action going on behind the scenes this month. Hold your cards close to your chest. Keep your eyes & ears open, & your lips zipped.

LEO:  The Lion/Lioness has no trouble finding friends to fill its Jungle. The Sun is shining on your house of friends, & acquaintances. Keep the party going, & get out there & network.

VIRGO:  If you’ve been thinking about changing jobs, getting a promotion, or looking for a job, this is the month to hit the pavement. Don’t just sit there thinking about it, just do it.

 

                                                                                                                                                

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Upcoming Events In June

Dustin Hoffman is The Graduate.

Support local writers and celebrate the creativity of our wonderfully diverse community by attending Lakewood Public Library’s Meet The Author, a platform for Northeast Ohioans to share their latest books and unique perspectives. 

Meet The Author: "The Girl from Cleveland City" Series by Alexsandra Sukhoy 

Wednesday, June 12, 2024 at 7:00 p.m. in the Main Library Auditorium  

Alexsandra Sukhoy breaks and blends writing and visual platforms- including screenplays, blogs and photography in The Girl from Cleveland City series. Books will be available for sale and signing at the event.  

Presentation - Cleveland's Olympic History 

Wednesday, June 5, 2024 at 7:00 p.m. in the Main Library Auditorium 

The Olympics are coming this summer! Come and learn about some of Northeast Ohio’s notable Olympians. Presenter Jill Jaracz is the founder and co-host of Keep the Flame Alive, a podcast dedicated to the Olympics and Paralympics. 

Literary Cleveland Presents:  

Write Now – Poetry Writing Workshop with Instructor Corey Miller 

Saturdays: July 6, 13, 20 and 27, 2024  

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Lakewood Cycling News

I’ve been a proud Lakewood business owner for years and a homeowner here since 2017. As such it’s great to see Bike Lakewood – a resident-led advocacy group and chapter of Bike Cleveland - increasing its activities in recent months!

Lakewood currently has the highest marks in Ohio from Walk Score, a company that helps people find walk/bike/transit-friendly areas. (Bike Scores are determined by bike lanes, hills, destinations/road connectivity, and bike commuting/mode share.) Currently Bike Lakewood is spotlighting the City of Lakewood’s Bunts Road rehabilitation project. Starting in 2026, Phase One will cover Lakewood Heights Boulevard to Franklin Boulevard and in 2027, Phase Two will encompass Franklin to Clifton Boulevard.

The improvements will benefit ALL road users: motorists, cyclists, micro-mobility device users, and pedestrians. Everything from surface drainage to pavement, curbs, and sidewalks to long pedestrian crossing distances to streetlights to updating signage to Clean Water Lakewood to sewer improvement to bicycle lanes will be addressed. Southbound traffic will be maintained, northbound traffic will detour to Warren Road. A small price to pay for such a huge list of safety improvements in our community!

PLEASE NOTE: Bike Lakewood supports Alternative 1, which will get us a 10-foot-wide separated shared use path (reducing accidents/injuries) and curb bump outs for greater connectivity and safety for all. More trees, less impact on traffic and the environment, plus Active Transportation Plan (ATP) and Safe Streets for All (SS4A) progress. Alternative 2 would mean on-street bike lanes on both sides of Bunts Road.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Bocce! Bocce! At Cove

On Wednesday, May 29th, we had a great “meet and greet” for the nighttime bocce league. Players gathered to see the court and lawn, watch live demos on how to play bocce ball, and check out the competition before the action kicks off officially on Wednesday, June 5th.

Got some free time on any of the next eight Wednesdays between 5:30 and 8:45 PM? Drop by Cove (12525 Lake Avenue) to say hi and cheer on these teams: Sunset Spockers, The Rat Pack, Ball Me Maybe, Joanie Loves Bocce, Irish Rovers, Fun-tastic Four, Rolling Rockers, Resilience, Bo-cheese Quesadillas, Jolly Ballers, The Misfits, Hot Shots, Khal’s Krew, The Bocce bHallers, Rookie Rollers, and We Speak Bocce. We hope to see you there!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

District Honors Academic Standouts In Celebration Of Excellence

Students receive their medals and congratulations from Board of Education members.

Lakewood City Schools proudly celebrated the achievements of its brightest students at the 41st annual Celebration of Excellence ceremony on May 16 in the Civic Auditorium. Held to honor the academic dedication and success of its students, 390 medals of excellence were awarded to middle school and high school students who maintained a 4.0 GPA or higher through the first three quarters of the academic year.

The ceremony, a highlight of the school calendar, recognized not only these top academic performers but also celebrated the District's National Merit Finalist and six Commended Scholars, who have demonstrated outstanding academic prowess on a national level.

In addition to the medals of excellence, the ceremony also included the awarding of a range of scholarships to deserving students. Recipients included those honored by the Lakewood Leadership Team, Lakewood Rangers Education Foundation, and winners of various Lakewood High scholarships. A notable addition this year was the presentation of the new Governor's Merit Scholarships, aimed at supporting students in their pursuit of higher education.

Keynote speaker Lisa Bruening, director of student services for the school district and a Lakewood High School graduate, delivered an inspiring address. Her speech emphasized the many ways the Vision of a Lakewood Ranger competencies have helped her succeed in her career and life. The audience and students also enjoyed some beautiful music from the Lakewood High Chamber Choir. 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Acoustic Musicians: Play Your Instrument, Sing Your Song

Congito Jaffe, wellknown local singer/songwriter is honored to announce that he will be hosting an innovative monthly summer music series at the Blue Café, 15715 Madison Avenue in Lakewood.

Perform your original or non-original, classical, folk, solo, ensemble, or string quartet for 15 minutes of music.  Share your voice, vision, and creative soul. This is a chance to perform/listen to fresh lively music by local residents, your friends and neighbors. We hope you will share your innovative new music, put your original spin on a classic, strum your guitar, bow your violin, tap your timbales, and sing along with others.

Sign-up for a 15 minute slot will begin half an hour before the event begins. Scheduled dates are: Sunday, June 16th 12pm-2, Sunday July 14th, 12pm-2pm, and Sunday August 18, 12pm-2pm.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Boom! Cleveland Shops Makes Noise

Cleveland Shops is making noise with its latest promotion.

Gordon Geiger was tired of seeing Amazon trucks roaming his neighborhood. He was concerned when he witnessed the increasing number of big box stores.

As the owner of Geiger's, a family-owned, Lakewood institution, Geiger decided to take things into his own hands.

He created Cleveland Shops, an organization of locally owned, independent retailers who joined together to educate the public about the importance of supporting local retailers.

That was nearly five years and a pandemic ago.

While the concept was welcomed by retailers on both sides of Cleveland, plans to launch were ill-timed. Marketing slated for March, 2020 was postponed because of the Covid outbreak. Momentum was lost. Plans for moving forward were put on hold.

That was then...

Today, Cleveland Shops boasts nearly 40 impressive retailers as members.

On June 1, it will launch its first major marketing promotion, "Boom!"

"Boom! connotes increasing sales at the cash register. It's the surprise that our members have in store for those on our e-newsletter list and our followers on social media," Geiger explains.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Join Us For Juneteenth!

On Wednesday, June 19th from 6:00 to 9.:00 p.m., Lakewood Black Caucus is celebrating its annual Juneteenth celebration at Lakewood Presbyterian, Church: 14502 Detroit and Marlowe. Our event is open to everyone and it is free! Come join us for food, games and live entertainment. There will also be a raffle with wonderful prizes! There is something for everyone. We will hold the event in Lawther Hall which is at the back entrance of the church. Bring the family, and enjoy the fun!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Healthy Lakewood Foundation Appoints New Board Member

The Healthy Lakewood Foundation is excited to announce the appointment of Kim Fennell to its Board of Directors. Kim, a Lakewood resident for the past decade, was appointed at HLF’s March Board meeting and brings a strong background in therapeutic recreation and a passion for community engagement and inclusion. Currently, Kim works at Rec2Connect as a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist, where she not only works with clients in the water as an aquatic therapist, but also implements land-based programs, oversees adult program outreach, and manages volunteers.

Kim graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Toledo and is currently working to complete her Master of Nonprofit Administration with Louisiana State University. Her diverse experience spans across various roles, including Recreation Therapy Coordinator at Clear Vista Geriatric Behavioral Health Unit and as the Center Director of the Lakeshore Rose Center for Aging Well. Kim is also a dedicated volunteer, notably at GiGi's Playhouse and the Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities.

Melissa Federman, HLF’s Board Secretary and Chair of the Governance Committee, notes, “Kim is an enthusiastic Lakewood resident who is eager to contribute to the Healthy Lakewood Foundation's mission. She brings experience as a recreation therapist in both non-profit and health care settings, in building community partnerships, and a dedication to equity and inclusion. Kim’s experience makes her a valuable asset to the foundation's board.” Join us in welcoming Kim to HLF’s board!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Keep Lakewood Beautiful Launches 2024 Beautiful Home Awards

Keep Lakewood Beautiful Launches 2024 Beautiful Home Awards

Keep Lakewood Beautiful is pleased to announce its 2024 Beautiful Home Awards! Now through July 15th is the time to submit your nominations for the Lakewood home(s) you think showcase eye-popping landscaping, well-maintained features, and that extra something that makes it “beautiful.”

Nominations can be made quickly & easily by visiting the City of Lakewood’s website (lakewoodoh.gov/keep-lakewood-beautiful) or by calling the City of Lakewood at 216-529-5061. Typically 50 to 100 Lakewood homes are nominated each year.

Keep Lakewood Beautiful has been orchestrating the Beautiful Home Awards for more than 10 years. One home from each of the original seven school districts is chosen from nominations submitted by community members. Winners will receive an award and be recognized during a City Council meeting this fall.

Thank you for helping Keep Lakewood Beautiful to properly honor this city of beautiful homes!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Lakewood Public Library Upcoming Programs: Children’s And Youth Services

Adventure Begins at Your Library 

For all children and youth from birth up to those entering twelfth grade. Read for fun and rewards. Participants will be entered into weekly drawings for prizes and gift cards. Readers can check online or in person. Finishers receive a certificate of completion and a new book to keep. Registration is required. 

Friday, May 10, 2024 through Monday, August 12, 2024 at the Main Library and Madison Branch 

Adventure Begins at Your Library Scavenger Hunt 

For all ages. Children are invited to participate in the Summer Reading Club scavenger hunt by looking for pictures of road and traffic symbols they might find on their next adventure. The pictures are found throughout the Children’s and Youth Services area of the library. The hunt lasts all summer. When you finish, turn in your scavenger hunt sheet to be entered in a drawing for a prize. No registration is required.  

Friday, May 10, 2024 through Monday, August 12, 2024 at the Main Library and Madison Branch 

Just Baby 'N Me 

For You and Your Birth to 24-Month-Old Baby 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Meet Me At Cove

William “Pete” Jennings

In August, William "Pete" Jennings celebrates three years as a bus driver for the Division of Aging. After retiring from 31 years of driving students for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, he took a break before discovering the opportunity to be a bus driver for the City. Pete enjoys helping people get around and spending time with seniors. He's known for his involvement in growing the unofficial tabletop bowling league at Cove, increasing its membership from 8 to 20. Outside of work, he takes care of his 90-year-old father, "Pops," and enjoys quiet moments with his girlfriend and their furry children: Charlie, the chocolate lab, and Beep, the cat.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

"Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" At Lakewood UMC

The Lakewood United Methodist Church, 15700 Detroit Ave., will host the Custer Road United Methodist Church Youth Choir from Plano, TX for a performance of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" on Sunday, June 9 at 10:00 am. The Custer Road Youth Choir is touring throughout the northeast United States this summer and will perform a modified 1-hour version of this theatrical production. This event is free and all are welcome. There will be an ice cream social on the church lawn immediately following the performance. 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Walking the Streets Of Lakewood--From A to Z!

Michael Daso poses with his "Lakewood A to Z" sign provided by Erie Design in Lakewood. 

Ever wonder what it would be like to walk down every street in Lakewood? (There are 210 of them!) Well now you can do that vicariously by visiting www.lakewoodatoz.com and following the journey of longtime Lakewood resident Michael Daso. As Michael explains at the site, “I’ve challenged myself to walk every street in Lakewood this year in alphabetical order (one per day) in hopes of raising some money for Lakewood Alive.” Lakewood Alive is a “community-centered nonprofit that fosters and sustains vibrant and welcoming neighborhoods.”

Michael’s project started with Abbieshire on February 5, 2024, and should finish with Wyandotte around Thanksgiving. He recently reached his halfway point (105 streets), and each entry about a street provides a few paragraphs and photos describing his experience. Highlights so far have included many aspects that make Lakewood streets unique—e.g. stunning and/or historic architecture, Little Libraries (and “Dog-Stick Libraries”), pocket parks, sidewalk drawings, Adopt-a-Spots, secret gardens, hidden gnomes, and, of course, friendly neighbors. (Author’s note: When I learned about Michael’s project, I started to provide historical background about different Lakewood street names for him, some of which also appears on the site.)

It’s not surprising that Michael, a local financial consultant, is civic-minded in his quest. His love of Lakewood is well-reflected in his multiple stints on a variety of local Boards of Directors, including the Beck Center for the Arts, the Lakewood Historical Society, and the Lakewood Chamber of Commerce. Michael and his wife have also raised four children in Lakewood.

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Where To Learn About Water Quality This Beach Season

Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District monitors beach water quality at several Lake Erie Beaches to help beachgoers know what to expect when they visit Edgewater and Villa Angela beaches.

Based on morning predictions observed at the beach and Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District data collection, the Great Lakes Nowcast system predicts beach water quality.

These predictions account for recent weather patterns, rainfall, wind direction, and other factors, that can affect bacteria levels in recreational beach water. Bacteria levels can also be affected by nature. Large concentrations of gulls and other shorebirds means larger concentrations of bird poop at the beach. Dog waste in areas near our shores is another contributor of bacteria, which is why it is important to Pick Up Poop.

Advisories related to recreation may or may not be related to water quality. Factors beyond water quality such as wave conditions, rip currents, debris, or other issues can also affect beach recreation.

Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) can affect water quality. When heavy rains produce large volumes of surface runoff, combined sewers may not be able to handle the increase. For this reason, rather than having sewage back up into homes or treatment plants, relief points were designed in the system to release the combined flow to the environment. Those points are called Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs).

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Wax Museum At Hayes Elementary Is A Hit

The Hayes 3rd Grade Wax Museum last week was an absolute hit, showcasing our students' incredible talents! After selecting and reading a biography, they delved into research and crafted digital or poster profiles of their chosen famous person. They then transformed into these famous personalities and welcomed families to meet everyone from Albert Einstein to Mae Jemison to Amelia Earhart and beyond! Awesome use of creative and critical thinking, communication and growth mindset.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Rangers Shine At State Track And Field Championship

Exciting news from the Division 1 State Track & Field Championship Meet over the weekend!

Ranger athletes delivered outstanding performances:

Kaydence Doxley soared to 2nd place in the long jump after a nail-biting tie-breaker jump against the eventual winner. She also took 16th in the 200 meters!

Charlie Payne finished strong in 7th place in the 1600 meters!

Charieon Doxley made us proud by competing in the 100 meter hurdles!

The 2x400 relay team of Mckenna Hunt, Sophia Eccher, Kaydence Doxley, and Charieon Doxley also ran against the best in the state! 

Congratulations to all our athletes and their amazing coaches for their hard work and dedication. You've made us Ranger Proud!

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Pride Club Students Celebrate Council Resolution

Students from Lakewood Pride Club attended the May 20th meeting of Lakewood City Council to cheer on Council's unanimous passage of Resolution 2024-34, recognizing LGBTQ+ Pride Month in the City of Lakewood. The Resolution was introduced by Mayor Meghan George, Council President Kepple and Councilwoman Cindy Strebig, Ward 3. With the passage of the resolution, the Pride flag will once again fly in front of City hall for the month of June.

Students from Lakewood Pride Club attended the May 20th meeting of Lakewood City Council to cheer on Council's unanimous passage of Resolution 2024-34, recognizing LGBTQ+ Pride Month in the City of Lakewood. The Resolution was introduced by Mayor Meghan George, Council President Kepple and Councilwoman Cindy Strebig, Ward 3. With the passage of the resolution, the Pride flag will once again fly in front of City hall for the month of June.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

President's Page: Connect With Council

Lakewood City Council Ward Map with Conversation Schedule

Hi Neighbors! One of my goals on Council has been to actively engage folks in their government and present multiple avenues of participation. At our Council Strategic Planning retreat earlier this year, Councilmembers unanimously supported communication with the community as top priority.

Council Community Conversations

While Council meetings provide a formal venue for public comment, and community members are always welcomed and encouraged to contact Councilmembers directly via phone and email, there is also benefit to hearing from our constituents in less formal settings and allowing for more organic conversation. To that end, I am excited to announce that we have scheduled the following listening sessions in each of the four Wards. 

All members of the community are invited to come and connect with their Councilmembers, ask questions, meet their neighbors, and share their ideas and concerns. We are grateful to our gracious hosts for opening their doors to Council and the public. Residents may identify their ward here: https://tinyurl.com/LkwdWards

Ward 1: June 20, 5-6 pm - Lakewood Family YMCA, 16815 Detroit Rd.

Ward 3: July 17, 6-7 pm – Barton Center, 14300 Detroit Ave.

Ward 2: August 6, 6-7 pm - Main Branch of Lakewood Public Library, 15425 Detroit Ave.

Ward 4: August 20, 6-7 pm - Madison Branch of Lakewood Public Library, 13229 Madison Ave

Additional Connect with Council Opportunities

Saturday, June 8th 12:00-2:30pm Come say “hi” to me at the Council table and enjoy a free cookout with neighbors at Lakewood Alive’s annual Birdtown Picnic at Madison Park. https://tinyurl.com/BirdtownPicnic24

Saturday, June 15th 1:00-3:00pm Join all seven Councilmembers and Bike Lakewood at Madison Park for a guided bike ride and to learn about our recently adopted Active Transportation Plan. https://tinyurl.com/LkwdBikeCouncil24

Saturday, June 15th 4:00-6:00pm After the bike ride, join us at Madison Court Community Coalition’s Juneteenth Celebration with free food, family activities, book giveaway and father-figure/children basketball match up.

https://tinyurl.com/LkwdJuneteenth2024

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Lakewood Historical Society 2024 Sale On The Grounds: June 20 Through 23

It is time for the Lakewood Historical Society’s annual Sale on the Grounds! The sale will be held at the Nicholson House and its grounds from Thursday June 20 to Sunday June 23. Times for the sale will be 9 AM to 3 PM Thursday-Saturday and Noon to 3 PM on Sunday.

The Sale on the Grounds has something for everyone including furniture, sets of dishes, glasses, pots, pans, kitchen utensils, linens, toys, games, puzzles, artwork, frames, small appliances, tools, collectibles, and much more. Cash, checks, and charges are accepted. It is a sale that you should not miss, and all proceeds go to the benefit the work and operations of the Historical Society. For more information, call the office at 216-221-7343. 

Robert Shimp is the Director of the Lakewood Historical Society.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Lakewood Municipal Court Modernizes With Technology

Probation Department check-in kiosk located in the Court's lobby.

Modernizing the Court is a priority for me because technology brings efficiency and access to the Court. We have successfully implemented several technological advancements and I am excited to inform you about the progress. I am very pleased to announce that the Court recently launched a new website that is freshly improved, updated, and user-friendly. Navigating any website should be easy and rather intuitive, and we strived to do just that. The website contains an abundance of useful information about the types of cases that are processed and heard in the Court, FAQs, making payments online, the various departments that comprise the Court, and much more. I encourage you to take some time to check out the new website, which can be found at www.lakewoodcourtoh.gov. 

A much needed improvements were made to the Court’s Probation Department. It included implementing a new software program in 2023. The software program is an excellent source to collect data about the types of offenses committed, the Ward where the offense occurred, recidivism information and more. The new system helps the probation staff in countless ways. Probation staff are occupied conducting pre-sentence investigations, collecting information from victims including restitution, all while managing their caseloads. They are tasked with monitoring persons on probation to ensure they are complying with the Court orders issued from their sentencing. All this information, including individuals’ case history is easily searchable with the new software. In 2023, there were approximately 200 active probation cases. This is a heavy caseload for three probation staff; however, the new software is an excellent support to the Probation Department. 

 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 12:51 PM, 06.05.2024

Once Again, The Sun Brings Us Back To Earth

Two rare amazing celestial events occuring a month apart, sparked magical human results which can give us all hope. Could it be a sign? Only if we truly understand what happened to all of us.

On May 10th Deb and I went out to view the Aurora Borealis, aka the Northern Lights. Rarely do Lakewoodites get a glimpse of the dancing light show normally viewed in the upper latitudes. Without having to go to Alaska or Iceland, we might have the opportunity to experience a Level 5 extreme geomagnetic storm taking place. This historic show unleashed by some of the strongest solar flares ever witnessed was supposed to be at its best, 10pm - 2am May 10/11. Claims that the Aurora Borealis would be seen all over the Northern Hemisphere, if skies were clear, made it pretty exciting.

Similar to the Total Solar Eclipse on April 8th, the question of where we should go to see the view was paramount. One of the dark sky parks? East or West of the City? Wanting dark skies to the North, we left fashionably late a little after 10 pm. Deb and I packed the car and headed down to Lakewood Park, one of the local viewing areas on the lake. Unfortunately, the police had already closed the parking lot, and people were walking in from blocks around, parking spaces nearby were not available, a lot like the 4th of July.

We decided to head west, even though a long drive east would potentially net a darker sky. As we went through Rocky River, every access point to the lake was packed, with more coming. Bay Village was nuts, packed with illegal double parking everywhere near the parks. It was tempting, but not wanting to get blocked in, we continued on. We weren't seeing anything in the sky as we drove. Avon Lake, packed. Sheffield, packed! It was closing in on 11pm, and we had not found the solitude we so desperately were looking for. However from the car, there was no sign it was happening. Was this just another wild goose chase that the local meteorologists had us on? Meteor showers come to mind.

Pulling into a local convenience store to think this through, we looked up, and even in this parking lot it was obvious, it was going on all around us. Not bright...but you could make out dark burgundy stripes across the dark sky. We went back to the last park we passed in Lorain, pulled in and found a parking spot as someone was leaving. I got out my camera, and realized immediately the battery was dead! DAMN. Seriously, and without a spare. Wouldn't be the first time. So, we resolved to just enjoy the show and not get caught up in photography.

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Volume 20, Issue 11, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Upgraded Baseball Field At Lakewood Park

Check out the newly-renovated Lakefront Field at Lakewood Park! Recent improvements include regrading, added field conditioner and new "ballfield mix" to the infield, and resetting of bases.

And, pardon the bias, but we're pretty sure there's no better backdrop for baseball/softball in all of Northeast Ohio.

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Dr G's Ranger Roundup: Track, Softball And Baseball

The Lakewood Girls Track Team had one of their best district performances this century, qualifying for the Regional in 7 events.

TRACK
 
May 17
 
The Lakewood Girls Track Team had one of their best district performances this century, qualifying for the Regional in 7 events. The boys also competed well, with school record holder Charlie Payne winning the District Championship in the 1600.

Kaydence Doxley turned in a dominant performance--she is the 2024 Amherst District Champion in the 200 and the Long Jump. She also anchored two second place relays--the 4x200 (with sister Charieon, Sophia Eccher and McKenna Hunt) and the 4x200 (with Charieon, McKenna and Aniya Johnson). Charieon also had an outstanding meet, placing second and third in the 100 and 300 hurdles respectively. McKenna placed third in the 400.

It's on to the Port Clinton Regional for Kaydence, Charieon, Sophia, McKenna, Aniya and Charlie. Last year, Kaydence and Charlie qualified for the State Meet, and Rangers have high hopes to add to that this season.

Kudos to all the coaches and athletes who endure the aches and pains, the long nights, and the unpredictable and often miserable spring sport weather (Same to the parents!). We have a good thin going in 44107. Long Live Lakewood.
 
SOFTBALL

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

The Good, The Better And The What The Heck: Part Three

The Good: There is one term that you will hear at every board meeting. “Adjournment to go to Executive Session.” Sometimes the session is held before the meeting so the president will say that they are returning from Executive Session. Board Policy 0166 explains how the Board can enter into an executive session. “The Board, as well as its designees, committees, and sub-committees, may hold an executive session only after a majority of a quorum of the Board (or its designees, committees, or sub-committees as applicable) determines, by a roll call vote, to hold an executive session and only at a regular or special meeting for the sole purpose of the consideration of any of the matters set forth in R.C. 121.22(G).” "If a public body holds an executive session to consider any of the matters listed in divisions (G)(2) to (8) of this section, the motion and vote to hold that executive session shall state which one or more of the approved matters listed in those divisions are to be considered at the executive session." (https://tinyurl.com/4eknra7h) 

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

A La Cart Returns To Cove With Delicious Culinary Demonstrations

A La Cart, a program organized by Lakewood Community Services Center as part of its senior self-determination of health initiative, has made a delightful return to Cove. The program is made possible through generous funding from the Three Arches Foundation.

The event featured Kiwi Wongpeng, chef and owner of Thai Thai Lakewood, who captivated attendees with a live cooking demonstration of Mango Sticky Rice. Be sure to stay tuned for future cooking demos to enjoy more culinary delights!

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Mayor's Corner: Fun In The Sun

Summer is always a wonderful and active time in our beautiful city. This year should be no different, as we expect another summer full of activities, events, and recreation opportunities throughout Lakewood.

The season kicks off on Saturday, June 1st with our annual Meet the Trucks event at Lakewood Park. Sponsored by the Lakewood Early Childhood PTA, this event always provides youngsters and their families with the chance for up-close views and interactions with Lakewood’s police, fire, construction, and maintenance vehicles. The day also features the chance to grab a bite from food vendors and other activities from local organizations.

As the heat starts to simmer, Lakewood’s two outdoor pools – Foster at Lakewood Park and Becks at Madison Park – will once again be open to help everyone stay cool and active. Last year was the first for the revitalized Foster Pool, and we saw record numbers of Lakewood residents take advantage of the upgrades to this beloved recreational asset.

The City will also continue to program and activate Lakewood Park with our popular Concerts in the Park and Friday Night Flicks events and our Summer Solstice Celebration on June 21st. Of course, the pinnacle of our events in the park will be our Fourth of July events, including the parade, and fireworks display. (Work on the parking lot at Lakewood Park is expected to wrap up soon and in time for our busiest season. The project provides more capacity for park users and other safety and environmental benefits without reducing greenspace in the park).

 

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Community Partners Collaborate To Support Seniors

On May 15th, the Department of Human Services, alongside our neighborhood paramedic and police officers, and LakewoodAlive, met with senior residents at Lake Shore Towers to share valuable information and resources. Sponsored by the Healthy Lakewood Foundation (HLF), this initiative aims to inform seniors in apartment buildings about available services.

Senior residents living in multi-unit dwellings who are interested in scheduling a visit can contact the Department of Human Services at 216-529-6687 to arrange a meeting.

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Upcoming Events

Meet the Author - "Broad Street Tully: A Rust Belt Tragedy" by David Higgs 

Wednesday, May 22, 2024 at 7:00 p.m. in the Main Library Auditorium 

As a table games dealer and pit manager in casinos across the Midwest, David Higgs discovered a sickness he never knew existed: problem gambling. The experience inspired his debut novel. Books will be available for sale and signing. 

Literary Cleveland Presents - Write Now: Nonfiction Workshop with Christopher Johnston 

Saturdays: June 1, 8, 15 and 22, 2024 from 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.  

Main Library Multipurpose Room  

Participants will generate new writing in this free four-week practical workshop designed to kick their writing into gear. Registration is required and begins on May 1, 2024. Visit us online at lakewoodpubliclibrary.org. 

Film - "Act of Violence" (1948, 82 minutes) 

Sunday, June 2, 2024 at 2:00 p.m. in the Main Library Auditorium 

Former prisoner of war, Frank Enley (Van Heflin) is considered a hero in his California town. However, Frank aided his Nazi captors, a secret he guards closely. His past comes back to haunt him when fellow survivor Joe Parkson (Robert Ryan) emerges, intent on making him pay for his betrayal. As Joe closes in, Frank goes into hiding, abandoning his wife (Janet Leigh), who has no clue about Frank’s wartime transgressions. 

 

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Cove Garden Club Kicks Off Planting Season

The Cove Garden Club (CGC) hosted a delightful and educational afternoon this week. Members got their hands dirty with compost and began the planting season by sowing the first vegetables.

Whether you're a seasoned gardener or a novice, the CGC welcomes you to join in the fun. Volunteers are needed for watering and weeding, so if you're interested in lending a hand, come by Cove to sign up. The water is ready, and we would love to have your help!

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

Open House/Celebration

Lakewood Clock Repair will host an Open House on Friday, May 31st, 5pm-8pm. Stop by and say, “Hi.” Enjoy some light refreshments.

The Open house is so we can say “Thank You!” to our existing customers, answer questions about the services we provide, and welcome potential new customers.

We also have a couple of milestones to celebrate, too: We are extending our business hours beginning May 28th, 2024. We will now be open 5 days a week Tue.-Sat. to better serve the community. 

Lakewood Clock Repair is now an Authorized Service Center for clock manufacturers Horward-Miller and Ridgeway.

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024

College Club West Scholarships

College Club West would like to announce the recipients of our 2024-25 scholarships. The scholarships will be applied toward the tuition of the following students: Hillary Leonard, Stephanie Sugaski, Mary Beth Kiss, Tabitha Stallings and Monica Starks. They will be honored at a brunch on June 8 at 11:30 at the Double Tree Inn in Westlake. The brunch is open to the public and we would especially like to invite past recipients to attend. For more information, go to collegeclubwest@gmail.com. 

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Volume 20, Issue 10, Posted 5:36 PM, 05.22.2024