Latest News

Healthy Lakewood Foundation Responds To COVID-19

The Healthy Lakewood Foundation (HLF) has announced that it will focus its 2020 grantmaking on community needs stemming from the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis.

Funds will be awarded immediately to help support two organizations that are directly helping Lakewood residents who are in great need during this crisis. A grant of $50,000 will be awarded to the Lakewood Community Services Center (LCSC) to support increased food procurement and distribution. A grant of $25,000 will be awarded to the Department of Human Services, City of Lakewood, for resident emergency needs stemming from the public health crisis. 

The Foundation will be taking a phased approach for the remainder of the year to respond with additional grants to meet further needs as they become clearer as the crisis unfolds.

“The board places its full confidence in LCSC and the City of Lakewood Human Services Department to identify residents most at risk and provide increased services and basic needs support in this time of crisis,“ says HLF Board President Jeanine Gergel. “We trust the leadership of these two entities to be able to quickly provide help to those most in need.” 

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Latest News Releases

Lakewood City Council Elects New Leadership
- City Hall, January 7, 2020 Read More
State Names Roosevelt Elementary High Progress School of Honor
- Board of Education, January 7, 2019 Read More
DeWine Nominates Cabinet Heads for DAS, DSA, OOD, DRC, Taxation, Appoints Numerous Senior Staff members
- Government, January 3, 2019 Read More
District to Renovate Taft for Curricular Expansion, Central Office Home
- Board of Education, December 18, 2018 Read More
Lakewood’s Roosevelt Elementary Named High Progress School of Honor
- Board of Education, November 16, 2017 Read More

View more news releases

School Closure Extended

Dear Families,

Today, Gov. Mike DeWine extended school closures statewide through May 1, 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. He indicated that he would assess what might happen after May 1 closer to that date and will not rule out closing schools for the rest of the academic year.

This prolonged closure through April means that we will all have to settle into a remote learning routine for the next month. This is new for all of us. Our teachers are learning to teach in new ways just as our students are adjusting to a new kind of learning. We must be adaptable, flexible, and be patient with each other!

We will continue to keep you posted as District leaders begin to address what this longer closure means for students and our school building communities.

Stay safe, stay healthy!

Lakewood City Schools

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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Digital Library Open 24/7

Even though Lakewood Public Library’s brick and mortar buildings are currently closed to the public there are still many resources available. Patrons can take advantage of the Library’s digital resources from home with their library cards. The Library offers many different online resources to support student learning, and to help pass the time at home.

If you don’t already have a library card, call the Main Library at (216) 226-8275, ext. 130 or Madison Branch at (216) 228-7428 Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. to sign up for a library card.

Available from home: 

  • eBooks, audiobooks and magazines using the OverDrive/Libby app.

  • eBooks, audiobooks, movies, TV shows, music and graphic novels through Hoopla.

  • Free online learning at

  • Online arts and crafts, including patterns and templates on the Hobbies and Crafts Reference Center.

  • Genealogy resources like Ancestry Library Edition, HeritageQuest, African American Heritage and Fold3 Military Records.

  • Language learning resources like Rosetta Stone, Mango Languages and Transparent Language Online.

For Youth

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Primary Voting Extended By Mail

Voting in Ohio’s March primary will continue in April. To take part, voters should request a vote-by-mail ballot from the Board of Elections, then complete and return it without delay.

That’s the simple update on the Ohio primary. All ballots already at the Board of Elections or there by the end of April will count. There’s still time to vote, and no reason to wait; local polling places in Lakewood won’t be opening.

Technically, March 17 remains the date of Ohio’s 2020 primary. Late on March 16, the Ohio Department of Health ordered polls closed, amid efforts to slow the COVID-19 pandemic. Errors and false steps by Secretary of State Frank LaRose and other state officials produced days of confusion, but legislators restored some clarity on March 25.

House Bill 197, passed unanimously by the Ohio General Assembly, allows voters to continue requesting and returning primary ballots until the end of April. The broad pandemic-response bill also instructs boards of elections to pre-pay the return postage for vote-by-mail ballots.

Limited in-person voting is to be available at the Board of Elections on April 28, only for voters with disabilities or no access to the postal service.

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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Starr Gazer


Aries: The Ram likes to lead the race, except there’s nobody following you, you’re a solo act, go home, you still win

Taurus: For once, I’m not going to tell the Bull to come out of the Bull Pen, there’s nobody at the Ballpark, go home

Gemini: Wherever the Twins go you’re the life of the party, not today; take your Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde act & go home

Cancer: The Crab, known homebody, loves to cook up a storm…except they’re throwing you the groceries from the curb

Leo: Leo, you’re King of the Jungle and when you roar everyone listens, except where have all the animals gone?

Virgo: Nobody likes to clean, organize & sanitize like a Virgo, your home is so clean, but nobody to show it off too


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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Restaurants At Your Fingertips

Lakewood resident Sara Sherepita knows restaurants, with a background as a chef and a sales manager at Haserot, she knows restaurants from the inside out. When the order came down from Governor DeWine closing all in-restaurant dining, she and fellow restaurant cheerleader Brad McLaughlin got busy putting a website together to bring restaurants and Greater Clevelanders together. 

The Cleveland Restaurant Takeout Facebook Group supports restaurants and those who like to eat.

As the Facebook description makes clear: "Amidst the current crisis among the Cleveland restaurant and bar community, this is a place where any business can post what they are doing for carry-out and delivery." Posts decribing delivery deals and not to be missed specials and amazing looking food ready and waiting to be ordered is what makes this site a place to visit more than once a day. 


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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

One Mother Asks... Letting Your Kids Hang Out? WTF!

“So have been trying to figure out a way to post this and not come off like a major bitch. It just isn't possible. So, my apologies if you read this, it may not be directed at you. And this is also a vague post. But, if you take offense at this, I am ok with it because you are the offender.

I just had to have a 20 minute conversation with my very upset teenage son about why he can't go to his friend's house when all of his friends are hanging out. He listed way too many kids that have been hanging out at their friends' houses, and walking around the city. I am pissed off. What in the world is wrong with you for letting your kids hang out right now?! Now, I'm the bad guy. What is the point of all of us going through all of this, when people are letting their kids hang out right now?! This will never end if we allow this to happen.

If you are a parent of one one of these kids, and are friends with me, and are offended by this, fine. Unfriend me. I am seriously so angry right now.


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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Mayor's Corner

Dear Residents:

Safety and public health are my top priorities. Since the first confirmed cases in Cuyahoga County were announced on March 9th, the City of Lakewood has adopted all recommended protocols and followed all guidance from our public health leaders at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, the Governor’s Office, and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health. 

Safety and Public Health

The City’s Fire Department and Police Department are award-winning preparedness experts and have taken necessary precautions to ensure that the safety of residents is protected without compromising the ability for the staff of each department to protect its ranks from infection or quarantine.

Taking Action

I have convened a coronavirus task force who meet daily. We have been communicating to staff, partner organizations, and the community at-large about the goals for emerging from this crisis, the steps the City is taking, and the impact those steps will have on City operations. With these partners, our goal is slowing the spread of the virus, so our health care system is not overburdened.

Slow the Spread

The City has closed public access to City facilities, canceled or postponed non-essential meetings, instituted livestream public meetings where practical and appropriate, enforced federal and state mandates for closure of bars, restaurants, and other relevant businesses, and required all non-essential staff to work remotely. All staff have been informed of coronavirus protocol and advised to notify a manager and stay home if they are sick or have a temperature higher than 100.4 degrees.


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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Stuff For Kids: What To Do At Home

There's a free app called "House Party."  It works with Android or Apple, works with Mac Book or a chrome book. With it you can Facetime your friends, up to eight on one call, and you can all see (and hear) each other. It comes with games you can play that are on the screen, but still allow you to see the other players. There's one called "Quick Draw," which is a game like Pictionary where you get a prompt to draw and the other player try to guess what it is and it's timed. Another game is called "Chips and Guac" which is a word association game like "Apples to Apples." There's a trivia game with a bunch of different categories. It allows you to go off the call and do other things and come back to it. You can turn the microphone on and off. You can wave to people on the member screen and then they'll get a notification that you're looking for them without having to call. Its a good way for everyone to hang out together even though we're all in different places. 

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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Three Three Three: Reviews Of Recent Releases By Local Bands, Pt. 103

The Cowboy - Wi-Fi On The Prairie - Feel It Records - 12 songs - LP, digital

Hot on the heels of their self-titled 7", The Cowboy are back with their second album and third release total. It's a solid record, 12 tracks of good garagey punk with a strong post-punk edge-- it isn't quite the halfway point between Homostupids and Pleasure Leftists since it's still much closer to Homostupids, but it's somewhere in there between them. This record sounds like The Cowboy, and I know that's a stupid thing to say but really that's what can be said about it. There are good, driving basslines, dissonant but catchy guitar leads, and some cool drum fills (I particularly like the drums on "Papa Bear"). There aren't exactly the standout tracks that there were on the first record (and I would still start there with this band), but this is good stuff. If you've liked The Cowboy so far, you'll certainly like this record as well. My favorite tracks were "Crazy World" and "SS," and the ridiculous closer "The Chief" was pretty cool too. 3.5/5


Ted Kane - The Dream - self-released - 8 songs - digital

Ted Kane is an expatriate Columbusite and one-time Jim Shepard collaborator living in California these days. This is his latest work, eight tracks of mostly just guitar and vocals. It's definitely within the Columbus tradition: the ballad-like title track and the punker "(I'm So Ambivalent About) Living In The USA" both recall different facets of Mike Rep and/or Tommy Jay (and actually, I could've sworn I recognized the name Ted Kane from some Mike Rep record but I could find no evidence of this, so maybe I just made it up). There are a few instrumentals in here, like the aptly named "Shuffle" and the meditative "The Same Stream," as well as a noisy a capella/percussion track called "Grinnin'," which was pretty weird (though I'm now at a point where I can't tell when things are trying to be weird or just are naturally, so I can't tell you which this is) and, to close out the album, a cover of "Pale Blue Eyes," which at this point is pretty unnecessary to cover, but is always going to be a good song anyway, so I guess I understand. Some of the stuff here is decent enough, but without full rock band instrumentation (or even just something besides guitar), it doesn't really work for me. Even so, good enough that it's of interest to people who are into Columbus-related stuff. 3/5


Are you a local-ish band? Do you have a record out? Email

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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

The Root Is Delivering, Has Free Books For Kids

The Root cafe remains open for take out as an essential business during this time of care and necessary limitations.
It’s important to keep yourself healthy with herbal teas, fresh organic vegetables & exercise.

We are following guidelines to increase sanitation and reduce risk of exposure. Please help us in our mission to practice safe public health:
Here is how you can help when picking up your food and drinks.
We are allowing up to three customers in at a time. 


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Volume 16, Issue 8, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

LakewoodAlive Launches Webpage Devoted To Resources To Help Small Businesses During COVID-19 Crisis

LakewoodAlive announces the launch of a webpage ( devoted to compiling resources for assisting Lakewood small businesses during the COVID-19 crisis.

This webpage is part of a collaborative effort with the City of Lakewood, Lakewood Chamber of Commerce and our private partners, including financial institutions, to demonstrate our commitment to helping small businesses citywide navigate this challenging situation. The page, which will be updated regularly, offers COVID-19 news, financial resources and other useful information for small businesses.

“During this time of crisis, supporting Lakewood’s vibrant small business community is more important than ever before,” said Ian Andrews, LakewoodAlive’s Executive Director. “Communication is essential in these difficult times. We are thankful to our partners for helping to make this webpage possible and hope it serves as a valuable resource for members of our small business community. We urge everyone to continue to support our small businesses in a safe manner during this difficult situation.”

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

LakewoodAlive Launches “Light The Lakewood Night” Community Solidarity Event

LakewoodAlive announces the launch of Light the Lakewood Night, a community solidarity initiative designed to convey optimism and togetherness during the COVID-19 crisis.

Lakewood residents are asked to participate by decorating their front porch or apartment balcony railing with string lights as a vibrant display of solidarity.  Residents who do not have a front porch or who do not have string lights at their disposal at home can still participate by simply turning on an exterior light at dusk.

Participants are asked to share their decorated porch photos to the Light the Lakewood Night Facebook event, while including the hashtags “#LovingLakewood” and “#LighttheLakewoodNight.”

“Light the Lakewood Night represents a simple way for community members to demonstrate that we are in this together,” said Ian Andrews, LakewoodAlive’s Executive Director. “Lakewood has always been a community of front porches, and now’s a great time for us to put these porches to good use to offer fellow community members a sign of hope during challenging times.”


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

One Lakewood Progress: COVID-19: The Truth, What We Can Do, And Leaning Into American Resilience

My job with the U.S. The Department of Health and Human Services is Community Outreach. The entirety of my time in Public Health has been working to ensure that patients, families and marginalized communities all over Northeast Ohio and the tri-state area have the information and emergency services they need to make informed healthcare decisions and can access support in times of crisis.

The goal of my column, One Lakewood Progress, has been this - that residents of Lakewood should have the information necessary to understand policies, whether local, state, or national and how they impact daily life. 

This installment of One Lakewood Progress is, perhaps, the most important one I’ve written. We are experiencing unprecedented times in our country, in the trenches of the global pandemic that is COVID-19. This disease touches the daily lives of all Americans, and it presents a very real threat to our health and safety. With talk from the White House of ending the social distancing lockdown on Easter Sunday, people are starting to question whether or not the virus is really that serious to begin with.

Let me disabuse you of that notion.

What is COVID-19? Why is it so dangerous?

CO-ronaVI-rus D-isease 2019 is a respiratory virus first discovered during an outbreak in Wuhan, China in 2019. 

COVID-19 is a brand new disease to humankind, which means that we have developed no antibodies against it through prior exposure. Because of this, the risk of infection is universal: if you come into contact with it, you are probably going to be infected. 


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Community West Foundation Announces COVID-19 Emergency Fund

Community West Foundation has established the COVID-19 Emergency Fund to further support their long-time grantees as additional needs arise. Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, area non-profits are feeling the financial pressure that comes with increased demand, volunteer shortage and canceled fundraising events due to social distancing requirements. In addition, Community West granted $50,000 to the Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund to make emergency funds available to non-profits helping those in need during this crisis.

The Community West Foundation Board of Directors recently approved $715,000 in quarterly grants to local non-profit agencies located in western Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties. Because of the timing of these grants, Community West allowed the organizations the freedom to allocate their grants as they deem necessary during this time of crisis rather than using them for specific programs outlined in their original proposals.

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Rotary Recognizes 15 Outstanding West Shore Career-Tech Students

West Shore Career-Technical District Outstanding Student Award recipients were honored by the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River at its noon luncheon on March 9 at the Don Umerley Civic Center. 

The 15 students, top performers in their Career-Technical programs, were chosen for their exemplary accomplishments in the classroom, school activities, clubs, athletics and service in the community. Each student exemplifies traits of leadership, dedication, responsibility, caring, community involvement, and initiative.

“We are so proud of the Career-Technical Rotary Outstanding Students--they represent the finest West Shore has to offer and we have some amazing students! When young people develop valuable skills, make connections and build a network while they are in high school--they have an inside track to a successful career. These students are prepared for the real world and have made the most of their high school/career-technical experiences,” remarked Bill DiMascio, West Shore Career-Technical District educational coordinator.

School administrators, parents, and guests were among those in attendance. According to Rotarian Nancy Ralls, West Shore Career-Technical District career development coordinator, this is the 22nd year the club has honored Outstanding Student Award winners. 


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

The Rockport Miracles-Part 4: Episode 24: “The Ballad of Derecho Dan” Continues:

The eerie, chaotic thunderclaps of Storm 5.6 sounded out for a full hour before the sentinel winds of the oncoming derecho were felt. Terrorized citizens fled the town in large numbers while many plucky Rockporters chose to stay and protect their properties. Over the years these brave souls morphed into a hardcore group of stalwarts who called themselves, "The Rocks of Rockport." 

Meanwhile, the jerkwad citizens of neighboring River City had begun gathering along their lake shore cliffs with lawn chairs, picnic baskets, and coolers loaded with their favorite beverages. They assembled to again witness a storm slam into Rockport. Many in River City complained when Storms 5.4 and 5.5 occurred at night while they were sleeping. At the sound of the first thunder boom, hundreds choked their favorite vantage points along the shoreline and waited for the show to begin.

Though most would question the logic of Maynard's “Manifesto with Cheese,” Little Dan had accepted his new destiny without hesitation.  The booming thunder became the "lizard's roar" signal that Little Dan’s had been waiting for. He fired up the boat, tore Maynard Gridley's manifesto in two and tossed it overboard. He took the helm and steered the boat, ‘The Friggin’ A’ out of its camouflaged position and into the river channel. 


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

LakewoodAlive’s Paint Lakewood Program Kicks Off 2020 Season

Looking to add a splash of color to your home’s exterior? A fresh paint job may be more affordable than you think. 

LakewoodAlive’s Housing Outreach Program announces the return of its Paint Lakewood Program for the 2020 season. The Paint Lakewood Program’s primary goal involves revitalizing Lakewood’s neighborhoods, while reducing lead hazards and educating residents on lead safety issues. 

This innovative program is designed to help make it more affordable for qualified Lakewood homeowners and residents to beautify their homes through exterior whole-home painting, ultimately making their homes safe for their families and the community.

Paint Lakewood will provide a grant of up to $4,500 to qualified Lakewood homeowners and residents for exterior paint, supplies and professional labor costs to paint their home. The program has been designed to offer a grant on a sliding scale to help reduce the cost of an exterior paint job.


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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

West Shore Students Tops In Culinary Contest

West Shore Career-Tech Culinary Arts students were stars at the recent Family, Careers, Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) regional competition in Columbus on February 29. Students who competed all won gold medals for their creations except for one student who won a silver. The students worked many additional hours after school to perfect their recipes. Below are the students honored:

Culinary Junior Team: Gold Medal

Alexis Frost
Madison Lacquement
Katie Milczewski

Pastry Tray Senior: Gold Medal

Emma Nagy

Pastry Tray Junior: Gold Medal

Paige Murrin

Pastry Cake Senior: Gold Medal

Madison Zoller

Pastry Cake Junior: Silver Medal

Destiny Ayala

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

Mayor's Corner

Coronavirus. COVID-19. Social Distancing. Flatten the Curve. Community Spread. These are phrases that weren’t part of everyday vocabulary a month ago.  Now that these terms are our everyday reality, I want you to know that my administration is doing everything possible to save lives. 

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

Eagle Scout Honors For Lakewood Young Adult

John Uchaker, son of John (Eagle Scout 1988) and Beth Uchaker, and brother to Ava, Eleanor and Jude, attained the rank of Eagle Scout in 2019 and will be honored by his Troop during a celebration to be held in March 2020.

John started his Scouting Career at the age of seven progressing through Cub Scouts earning the ranks of Bobcat, Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Webelos, Arrow of Light and the Catholic Youth religious awards: Light of Christ and Parvuli Dei (Little Children of God). 

For John, the Trail to Eagle continued as he crossed over to Boy Scouts. While a Boy Scout John progressed quickly through the ranks of Scout, Second Class, First Class, Star, and Life. As he enjoyed being a Scout, the path to Eagle took an additional four years. During his years of Scouting, John’s natural leadership ability was enhanced by successfully completing Troop Leadership Training (TLT) and National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT). He later implemented the techniques learned by serving in leadership roles within his Troop including Senior Patrol Leader, Quartermaster, Den Chief, Chaplin Aide and Librarian. He also held the position of Vice Chief, Order of the Arrow, Erielhonan Lodge as well as a member of the lodge’s Ceremony Team.

John served as the Council Junior Popcorn Kernel (2012), Grand Canyon Council and as the Scout Days Scout Ambassador (2013), Grand Canyon Council. The Greater Cleveland Council (Lake Erie Council) invited John to represent the Council on a 2015 Academic Challenge episode, with an on air appearance reading the question “Today’s Boy Scouts can earn Merit Badges in a variety of areas, ranging from computers and nuclear energy to cinematography and what “G”-initialed science, that studies the physical structure of the Earth?” [Answer: Geology]

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

The Lakewood Observer Digital Subscription

Don’t miss the homegrown, hyper local news, events, opinions, photos and cartoons that impact and reflect our community.

Subscribe to the digital edition by sending a request to with “SUBSCRIBE” in the subject line. There is NO COST to our readers. We simply ask that you consider our advertisers for your needs.

The Lakewood Observer remains committed to the continuation of the print edition available around town, the PDF edition online and respecting your inbox. Your email address will only be used to send the digital edition on publication dates.

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Volume 16, Issue 3, Posted 11:01 AM, 04.02.2020

City Of Lakewood Response To Coronavirus/COVID-19 Crisis:

The City of Lakewood is monitoring the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic closely and is taking direction from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Governor’s Office and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health regarding mitigation procedures.

All COVID-19 cases are being tracked and monitored by the Cuyahoga County Board of Health and the Ohio Department of Health. Cases are tracked by the patient’s home residence. As of this afternoon, there are no known Lakewood residents who have tested positive for COVID-19. However, we know community spread of the virus is happening in Ohio and there is a strong likelihood that we will see cases here in Lakewood. We are working diligently to minimize the spread of this virus.   The Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals have set-up two drive-through testing facilities for COVID-19. MetroHealth has also set-up a drive through clinic. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, please contact a healthcare provider. Do not go to the emergency room.
If you have chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness, severe headache or other potentially life-threatening problems, go to the nearest emergency department or call 911.
The following is a listing of the most-recent updates:

  • All non-essential city employees have been sent home and are working remotely when possible.
  • Following the Governor’s recent guidance, essential city meetings will be limited to ten people in a room. All non-essential meetings have been cancelled.
  • Our Police and Fire Departments have protocols in place and are updating them based on CDC protocols.
  • The Lakewood Animal Shelter is closed as of 12:00 PM on March 17, 2020. If there is an animal concern, such as a dog running at large, contact the non-emergency police number at (216) 521-6773.
  • Metered parking is no longer being enforced at this time.
  • All fitness centers/gyms; bowling alleys; public recreation centers; movie theaters, indoor waterparks and trampoline parks in Ohio are now closed.
  • All bars and restaurants in the State of Ohio are closed to the public. Carry-out and delivery are still available.
  • Division of Housing and Building will be open by appointment only. Please call (216) 529-6270 or email to make an appointment.
  • The Department of Planning and Development will be open by appointment only. Please call (216) 529-6630 or make an appointment.
  • There will be no water shut-offs for non-payment during this pandemic. If you are behind on paying your water bill, payment plans are available.
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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

A Message From Lakewood High School

Dear Ranger Families:

This is Mr. Walter with an update for March 18, 2020. 

1.  LHS is closed to students and visitors during this time.  We will be accessing our voicemail and our emails daily but response time may be delayed.  Our goal is to return messages within 24-hours.   

2.  Report Cards will be delayed but parents can access Progressbook to view grades from third quarter

3. We are aware that there are many important upcoming events that are a concern to many.  I can assure you that we are in discussion about contingency plans and our main focus is on the safety of students while providing them with the best alternatives we can.  As more information on school closings become available we will make decisions about events and communicate them to you. 

4.  Teachers are continuing to develop lessons that can be delivered online to ensure that all students continue their academics and receive the credits they earn.  I am highly impressed and proud of how quickly and professionally our staff has adapted to support our students.  Virtual learning will start on March 30th.




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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

A Message From Lakewood City School District

Dear Families:

I would first like to offer praise and thanks for your understanding during these unprecedented times. I know how difficult it is at a time like this to have to worry about your children, spouse, and other loved ones, not to mention friends, neighbors, and colleagues. We know that what is being asked of you now in regards to your children learning from home will be stressful and challenging at times.

With daily guidelines and orders coming from our President, Governor, the CDC, and Ohio Department of Health, we will have to make many adjustments as each day brings new and often troubling developments. I know this feels uncomfortable and often uncertain. This is our “new normal” for a while. I ask that you be patient with us as we adapt and revise as we go along and realize what is working and what is not.

It is highly likely that our extended closure ordered by Gov. DeWine will go beyond April 3rd. We need to mentally prepare for this scenario. We know that this announcement would mean more sadness, tears, and disappointment for many of our families, especially those with seniors. We are sad for them as well!




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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

Stuck At Home? Tell Us About It

We've all been running around a lot, trying to get our lives together, and get ready for keeping to ourselves for a while. In a city like ours, it will be strange not to see as much of each other as we're all used to.

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

Talented Artists Shine At Barton Senior Center

photo by Adelaide Crnko

The Barton Senior Center's Talent Exhibit on February 23 demonstrated that there is no age limit when it comes to being gifted. Held in two locations within the Center (on the ground floor of the Westerly Senior Apartments), the event featured residents' paintings, photography, quilts and other unique pieces, one being a vinyl record that was molded into a ruffled bowl.

The Barton member who organized the show summed it up with "this is the epitome of patience and perseverance," acknowledging the amount of time and effort that went into much of what was on display.

Susan Lucas added, "I had no idea so much talent is housed in this complex." Her remark was echoed by many. Other praise included "awesome experience," "fantastic artwork from everybody," and "one of a kind." A crowd favorite was Anna Baker's portrait of her grandparents. It was so well done many thought it was a photograph. Another artist did use a camera to capture images of wildlife, fall foliage and travel landscapes. Needle crafts were also greatly admired by attendees.

Following the visual arts presentations, the celebration moved into the facility's Rotunda. Janis Zemzars, a classically trained pianist, played compositions by Chopin and Debussy. Vocalists sang popular tunes ranging from "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" to "The Rose." The afternoon concluded with the audience singing along to "Joy to the World" by Three Dog Night followed by Barton member "Hippie Chatty Kathy's" interpretation of "Old Time Rock & Roll" from Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band.

The Barton Center's Talent Exhibit provided a venue where creativity could be viewed in a formal setting. Some participating artists were asked if their pieces were for sale. It was also a way for the senior community to come together for an inspiring and uplifting afternoon.

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 3:12 PM, 03.19.2020

Lakewood Rangers Basketball--Thanks For The Memories

All good things must come to an end. On March 7th, at the classic Elyria Catholic Gym, the Lakewood Rangers (16-9) Basketball season did just that in the District Final at the hands of a richly talented Lorain team. After Lakewood stormed back from an early deficit to briefly take the lead in the second quarter, the Titans found their rhythm and eventually pulled away in the 3rd quarter. Never again will we see Nate Mims dominate a game with slashing drives and stifling defense, nor the hustle plays of Matt Bohurjak and Max Budzar. Dante Wahba's 3-point bombs, Antonio Crockett's clutch plays and Chris Brown's silky drives are a thing of the past. 

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 3:12 PM, 03.19.2020

In Sickness And In Health: Reviews Of Recent Releases By Local Bands, Pt. 102

The Cowboy - The Cowboy - Drunken Sailor Records - 3 songs - 7", digital

The Cowboy's debut LP was three years ago, as jarring as that is. This is the long-awaited follow-up EP. Side A has two pretty good post-punk leaning punk songs, the vaguely threatening sounding "The Swimmer" and "Mr. Lamppost," which was kind of reminding me of a more aggressive version of Institute or one of those kindsa bands. I probably said something to this effect three years ago, but The Cowboy, for obvious reasons, sounds like a cleaner, more straightforward Homostupids (if the reasons aren't obvious, it's because it's 2/3 the same band). The flip side here is a different kind of thing. "Way Out" is a far more mellow, almost jammy song. It's definitely more laid back than usual for the band, and kind of just meanders its way through itself, but in a weird way, it's enjoyable. The comedown after the first side, perhaps. A strong EP here. 4/5


Stinky Monkey Finger - The Earring - DF Records - 15 songs - digital

This might be the best SMF release so far. Every time I review them, I say something like the nearest comparison is Guided By Voices or rather some more out-there Bob Pollard lo-fi project, but I say it with the caveat that it isn't quite accurate. This time it's very accurate: this sounds very much like something out of the Rockathon camp. And actually, it's the better for it, as there are a good few solid songs on here evenly distributed with the weirder material. That's not to say, however, that they just sound like GBV now; they most certainly still have their own identity. There really is a good mix here of the "song" songs ("Call Me Up," "I've Been Drinking" (another Pollard connection), "Slow Burn," to just name three) and the more, perhaps, difficult material (the drum machine free jazz of "Blasting The Boom," the rather aptly titled "Skate World," which sounds ominous enough that perhaps it should've been "Skate Dystopia," and "Bad Ink," which is a melee of instruments that sounds like it's almost gonna fall apart at any second, but never quite does). Probably the best place to start with this band/project/guy (I'm still not quite sure) if you're intrigued. 3.7/5


Are you a local-ish band? Do you have a record out? Email

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Volume 16, Issue 7, Posted 3:06 PM, 03.19.2020

Roberts And Wendt Animal Clinic Loses Its "Heart And Soul"

Roberts and Wendt Animal Clinic is a small, neighborhood animal clinic established in 1930 by Dr. Roberts and Dr. Wagner in the heart of Lakewood. It is Cleveland's oldest small animal clinic in the area. Dr. Wallace Wendt joined the clinic as a partner in 1945. The clinic doctors served as the Cleveland Metropark veterinarians from the late 1930s until 1988. The animal clinic has always been known for high quality care of one's animals. Dr. Victoria Wendt followed in her father's footsteps. She graduated from The Ohio State Veterinarian School in 1987 and began to practice at Roberts and Wendt in 1988. Dr. Victoria Wendt has been part owner and Chief of Staff since taking the practice from her dad.

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 3:07 PM, 03.19.2020

The Cuyahoga County Board Of Elections Reminds Voters That The March, 17 2020 Presidential Primary Election Is On St. Patrick’s Day

The Cuyahoga County Board of Elections wants all voters to be aware that the March 17, 2020 Presidential Primary Election falls on St. Patrick’s Day this year.

“Because of all of the wonderful, celebratory St. Patrick’s Day events and festivities scheduled on Election Day, we encourage voters to cast their ballots by voting Early In-Person at the Board of Elections or to Vote-by-Mail,” said Anthony Perlatti, Director of the Board of Elections. “By casting ballots prior to Election Day voters don’t have to worry about conflicting commitments on St. Patrick’s Day.”

Early In-Person Voting and Vote-by-Mail began on February 19th. The Board is open for Early In-Person Voting on the following dates:

Weekdays, February 19 to March 6: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Saturday, March 7: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Weekdays, March 9 to March 13: 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Mayor's Corner

Welcome to the Mayor’s Corner! I am excited to begin using this space to contribute short pieces from time to time to offer insight for Lakewoodites into issues currently happening at City Hall or important ideas I’d like to communicate to the community. I’m grateful for this forum and I intend it to start ongoing conversations with you. 

During my campaign for the Mayor’s Office last year and since getting elected, you have probably heard me talk about my priorities for city government: Safety, Neighborhoods, Environment, and Disciplined Finances. In this first edition of the Mayor’s Corner I want to talk a bit about Finances.

In the City’s Finance Department, we are currently hosting a team of auditors from Auditor of State Keith Faber’s office. To most people, the word “audit” suggests a hassle, at least, and maybe serious legal and financial consequences, at most. The Auditor of State and his team are the compliance officers for Ohio taxpayers and their responsibility is to ensure that local governments like ours are conducting the people’s business in an open, honest, and efficient way. 

When they are through, they will have spent weeks reviewing our finances in tremendous detail and providing me with any “findings.”  As I begin my first year as Mayor of Lakewood, my interests (and yours!) are aligned with Auditor Faber’s—We want to be sure everything is just as it should be. We will be back to you with their results.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

One Lakewood Progress - Issue 28 Critical To Support Lakewood City School Students Social, Academic, And Mental Health

Lakewood City Schools Director of Student Services, Lisa Bruening, says the district is working with more children with diagnosed mental illness or who present with symptoms. “We are seeing more students with anxiety and depression, which can manifest itself in the form of school avoidance. Families find it difficult to get into outside providers, due to extensive waiting lists. If we are able to work with our students and families within the district, we can help children stay in school and bring support directly to them.”

Currently, the district offers mental health services through Bellefaire and Guidestone agencies. Many people may be surprised to learn that therapists from these agencies work out of the school buildings. 

Many districts in the United States, in an effort to address psychosocial barriers to students’ educational advancement like food and financial insecurity, lack of family support, and the presence of mental illness, have taken a 360-degree approach by providing wrap-around services that support the whole life of the child. Studies show a child’s social environment affects physical and mental wellness and their ability to function.…”[S]tudents seen are typically Medicaid eligible but dependent on funding, students, not medicaid eligible, can receive up to 6 sessions as a consult or in a group.  We also have a social worker 4 days a week at the medical clinic [operated by the Cleveland Clinic] based at Lakewood High School…[and]… a resident social worker that completes a rotation [there]. One day a week we [also] have an adolescent psychiatrist based at the…clinic.” 


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Ranger Brothers Grab SWC Wrestling TItles

Brothers Jayden, left, and Milan Jackson.

The Lakewood High School wrestling team competed in its last Southwest Conference championship tournament on February 22 and left with two individual titles and a runner-up. Congratulations to senior Milan Jackson, who won the 160-lb. weight class, and Milan's brother, junior Jayden Jacskon, who won the 170-lb. weight class. Also reaching the awards podium were sophomore Brandyn Bates (220 lbs.) as runner-up, and junior Nistor Krizan (195 lbs.), who took third place. The team was scheduled to compete at the Division 1 Sectionals tournament February 29 at St. Edward High School.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Staff Spotlight Honorees: Giuliano & Prindle

Each month Lakewood City Schools selects two staff members to honor. These staff members are nominated by their peers for their outstanding work. This month's nominees are assistant custodian Tony Giuliano and Emerson Elementary kitchen manager Leanne Prindle. Congratulations to both!


Moving a file cabinet from one second story location to another, with no elevator, is not easy. Imagine moving 100 of those, fully loaded. That is what Lakewood Schools assistant custodian Tony Giuliano and his fellow moving crew members did over the course of 4-6 weeks to transition the Board of Education office on Warren Road over to the new Taft Center for Innovation. Add to the heavy file cabinets, moving hundreds of boxes, computers, furniture, and random miscellaneous items as well. It was a big job and Tony proved he was up to the task!

“Tony took complete ownership to make sure move went as smooth and complete as possible.  He went over and above my expectations,” said Operations Assistant Manager Ed Deblock.

Tony’s nominators – most of his fellow moving crew members – not only praised his hard work and organization, but his positive attitude and sense of humor that made an exhausting, relentless job more enjoyable.

“Tony's crazy personality keeps his coworkers' mood up and makes tedious jobs fun,” says fellow utility custodian George Mihalek.

Tony joined the District in 2008 as a food handler and delivery driver. He became a jack of all trades when he moved into his current utility role, which includes delivering district mail. He loves the variety of the job where he never knows until he walks in the door each morning what his task will be for the day. He also loves working in the district where he went to school.

“I’ve gone from being a student to having keys to my former classroom,” Tony says. “I love how my life’s come full circle.”


When a group of Leanne Prindle’s Emerson Elementary colleagues submitted her name for Staff Spotlight, a common theme ran through the 11 nominations: kindness and caring. While this is only Leanne’s first year as the school’s kitchen manager, her impact already has been greatly felt on the school community.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

LakewoodAlive Unveils “Knowing Your Home” Schedule For 2020

The Knowing Your Home schedule for 2020 consists of 14 free workshops.

When it comes to your home, you are never alone. There’s no better time than now to take proper care of this important investment, and LakewoodAlive is here to help you every step of the way.

LakewoodAlive announces the schedule for the 2020 edition of “Knowing Your Home,” a free educational series focused on sustainability and home maintenance best practices empowering homeowners to tackle necessary repairs and improvements. Orchestrated by LakewoodAlive’s Housing Outreach Program, this series is designed to benefit a wide range of residents:

  • Those considering a home DIY project
  • Those planning to hire a contractor
  • Those simply interested in better understanding how their home works

The seventh year of this popular home maintenance program features a collection of 14 workshops taking place from March through October led by experts within the industry. These workshops will cover a wide range of topics designed to educate residents regarding improvements and best practices for their homes. The best part? Each workshop is open to the public and free to attend.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Children/Youth Events At Lakewood Public Library

Dungeons & Dragons Roundtable
For students in seventh through twelfth grade.
Join us for a round of Dungeons & Dragons, a fantasy role-playing game in which you will develop your own heroic character in a collaborative story with other players to embark on various quests to slay monsters, explore dungeons, find treasure and vanquish evil. Beginners and veterans alike are welcome. Registration required.
Sunday, March 8, 2020, 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in the Main Library Multipurpose Room.

Illustration Creation 
For students in kindergarten through first grade.
A six-week program featuring an art project each week based on a children’s book. Registration required.
Thursdays, March 12, 2020; March 19, 2020; April 2, 2020; April 9, 2020; April 16, 2020 and April 23, 2020 from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. in the Main Library Activity Room.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Friends Of Lakewood Public Library Spring Book Sale

Whatever the season, the Friends of Lakewood Public Library are always working hard to move, sort and organize the thousands of generous donations pouring in from the community, making sure the next sale will be even greater than the last. 

The hardworking crew has done it again, with a whole new supply of books, magazines, DVDs, CDs, puzzles and record albums waiting for you at the Friends’ Spring Book Sale on Saturday, March 14, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 

Would you like to get an early start on the bargains? The Members-Only Preview Sale will be on Thursday, March 12, 2020 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. To attend the special sale, memberships can be purchased at the door for as little as three dollars.

Proceeds support Lakewood Public Library’s acclaimed programming, including free lectures, concerts, films, youth programs and the library van, which delivers books to classrooms and homebound readers.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

LPL Calendar Of Events Compiled By Elaine Rosenberger

Thursday, March 5, 2020 at 6:00 p.m.
College Now Greater Cleveland FAFSA Workshop
Main Library Learning Lab
Presented by College Now Greater Cleveland and Lakewood High School. College Now Greater Cleveland is the College Access program available at Lakewood High School. Pam Sandoval is a College Now Greater Cleveland Adviser available to help parents of senior students and students with the financial aid process. Join College Now for a hands-on FAFSA workshop. To register, call (216) 226-8275, ext. 127.

Saturday, March 7, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. (98 minutes)
Imagine Your Story
Film: "The Princess Bride" (1987)
Directed by Rob Reiner
Main Library Auditorium
While home sick, a young boy listens as his grandfather reads the story of a farmboy-turned-pirate named Westley (Cary Elwes). When Westley’s true love Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright) is kidnapped by a ghastly gang and forced into betrothal with the evil Prince Humperdinck (Chris Sarandon), this classic tale takes an adventurous turn. Join us this season to Imagine Your Story with films that draw upon fairy tales, folklore, fantasy and mythology.

Sunday, March 8, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.
Imagine Your Story
Performance—WordStage Literary Concerts presents: A Mythological Competition
Main Library Auditorium
Before Hollywood, before Elizabethan drama, before even Roman theater, were the Ancient Greek tragedy competitions. In this literary concert, the judge is a formidable woman: the Muse of Tragedy, Melpomene. The competitors are the greatest of the Tragedians: Aeschylus, Euripides and Sophocles. Their attempts at outperforming each other and acerbic comments made by Melpomene offer a drama in and of itself designed to entertain and inform audiences.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Life In The Rust Belt: Author Eliese Colette Goldbach To Visit The Library

At 29-years-old, Eliese Colette Goldbach never expected to be wearing a hard hat, operating a crane, or driving a forklift. In fact, working at the ArcelorMittal Cleveland mill was never part of the plan. As a high school graduate, she was destined for the convent and life in a religious order.

Her youthful faith took a blow when she was sexually assaulted in college and soon after diagnosed with bipolar disorder. With a dose of the rust belt resolve that runs deeply in Cleveland, Goldbach looked for a new career path. The promise of a high-earning paycheck brought her to the unlikely vocation as a steel worker.

Like most Cleveland natives, she had passed by the orange flame of the steelyard for years without a second thought. It wasn’t until she was inside the belly of the mill that she that realized the world it represented. What outsiders saw as a sign of pollution symbolized a booming business and a healthy economy to those inside the mill walls.

With the contentious 2016 election as a backdrop, her memoir reflects on her life inside and outside of the mill. As a young liberal female in a male-dominated industry, her ideology was vastly different from her blue-collar conservative counterparts. But according to Goldbach, “There was no division so great that it could eclipse the unity that had been forged in the light of the mill’s orange flame.”


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Psychology: Reviews Of Recent Releases By Local Bands, Pt. 101

Cheap Clone - New Paltz/Walk To Canada - Just Because Records / Peanut Butter Records - 2 songs - cassette, digital

These are, sadly, the final recordings from my beloved Cheap Clone (hopefully just temporarily, but for now, this is it). At least they've gone out on a high note! (and that's not a joke about Drew's vocal range). "New Paltz" is a totally great power pop track with jangly/chorus-y guitars throughout and some siren-like noises at the start. It's a really catchy track, and that alternating-two-notes guitar lead throughout works really well. The "flip" (although not really, since both songs are on the same side– and actually, both repeat on the other side as well) is another good track, "Walk To Canada," parts of which remind me of The Mice. There's also part of the guitar lead that I really like and can't quite place what it's reminding me of. In any case, this is really good, much like everything else Cheap Clone has released. I will deeply miss this band and I keep my fingers crossed for their eventual return. 4/5

( to listen, you may have to bug the band or label directly for the tape)

The Mind - Edge Of The Planet - Drunken Sailor Records - 8 songs - 12", digital

Eight solid tracks of drum machine-driven post-punk from The Mind here, although to just say drum machine post-punk is overly simple. Steve Peffer is a member of this group, which should tell you immediately that it's both better and more strange than just "drum machine post-punk." In some ways, it kinda feels to me like if Factorymen was a more accessible and less immediately weird project. Sorry if those two sentences seem a bit contradictory– these are catchy tracks in a definable genre, but there's still strange and sometimes eerie synth swells, disjointed guitar parts from Jordan Darby, and melancholy, at times almost haunting vocal melodies from Vanessa Darby. The tracks here are all at least a little hypnotic in a way, and they all live up to the tone set by the cover art: a twilight highway with weird neon lights running across it (at least that's what I'm seeing, and, I guess, hearing). A good record– I don't know if I'd necessarily say each track works on its own, but as one piece, this thing is good. My favorite songs are "Running On My Head" and "Technical Intuition," but again, you kinda gotta hear the whole thing. Steve gets a great bass tone on here. A cool project that I hope to hear more from. 4/5



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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Should I Vote For The Levy?

Unlike many of the people we see pushing the levy, I have no day-to-day connection with Lakewood Schools. I am not dependent upon them for teaching my children, or relatives' children. I am semi-retired and on a very fixed income. I do not rely on Lakewood Schools for my day-to-day living, or my day-to-day well-being. I really have ZERO dogs in this hunt. Or do I?

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Volume 16, Issue 6, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Sunrise Rotary Supports Trials Of Hope At Fundraiser May 1, 2020

The 2020 Annual Dinner and Auction Fund Raiser will be Friday, May 1 at 6 p.m. at the Don Umerley Center in the City of Rocky River Civic Center complex at West 210 and Hilliard Blvd. It will include a full course served dinner with cash bar and silent and live auction raffles. Trials of Hope will be a major benefactor of this year’s event. Tickets are just $30 per person.

The mission statement of Trials for Hope is to deliver dignity and hope to those who fall between the cracks, bringing wholesome food, personal care items, and warmth to the greater Cleveland area.

In 2010, Trials of Hope founder, Johnathan Gray was gifted a large donation of trial-sized toiletries and decided to bring it to a local community meal. A line quickly formed, and the expressions of gratitude were encouraging, but a greater need was also revealed. Many in the community had needs and requirements that weren't being met by assistance programs and they had fallen between the cracks. Whether it was the inability or lack of funding to provide medical, clothing, or personal care - the community was struggling, and Jon saw a way to answer the need. Through dedication, personal connections, and tireless outreach to both the giving communities and those in need he has been able to continually answer 'yes' when those who struggle reach out for help.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Popular Play & Say Program Will Now Be Offered In Lakewood

Join us for a new playgroup that is safe and welcoming for families in all communities who are seeking more connections and a supportive environment for their child (ages 0-6 years). The first Play & Say in Lakewood will take place on Thursday, March 5, 10 a.m. at Lakewood Family Room Main. It is supported by the Rotary Club of Lakewood and Rocky River.

At Play & Say, you'll learn new skills, meet other families and connect to community resources. An experienced Speech-Language Pathologist from the Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center will highlight a new topic each month and families will go home with an educational handout. As participants practice social and communication skills, staff members will be available to answer questions and offer tips. This program is free and open to the public of any community and is designed for children with and without developmental concerns. Registration is preferred, visit Co-sponsored by the Lakewood Family Room.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Rep. Skindell Named AMVETS Dept. Of Ohio 2019 Legislator Of The Year

State Rep. Michael J. Skindell (D-Lakewood) was presented this past weekend with a “2019 Legislator of the Year Award” in appreciation for his outstanding service, support  and leadership in government on behalf of Ohio’s veterans.

“I am deeply honored to receive this award,” said Skindell. “To be recognized by an organization, such as AMVETS, which is known for its outstanding services to our veterans is truly humbling.”

AMVETS Dept. of Ohio works to improve and protect the entitlements for all American Veterans who have served honorably. The leadership, advocacy and services provided helps to improve the quality of life for veterans, their families, and the communities where they live.

Rep. Skindell represents Ohio’s 13th House District. He previously served four terms in the Ohio House before moving on to serve as State Senator for Ohio's 23rd District in 2010. He returns to the House motivated to work across the aisle ensuring children and families have access to affordable healthcare and live in a clean and safe environment. He received his B.A. in Business and Political Science from Walsh College in Canton, Ohio and his J.D. from the Cleveland Marshall College of Law.



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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

The Rockport Miracles - Part 4: Episode 23: "The Ballad Of Derecho Dan" Continues

The thunder strikes of Storm 5.6 sounded as though they'd emanated from the lower regions of hell. Those citizens that were still living in Rockport said it sounded like a distant bus being chewed apart along with booming sounds like cannonade. Rockporters remember this storm as “The Serpent Storm” or simply, “the Serp." It was the storm that made Little Dan Newman a household name throughout the country. Somebody even wrote a chart-topping song about it called, “The Ballad of Derecho Dan.”

He was just a boy,                                                                                                                 

Who pumped the gas,                                                                                                               

Until the day,                                                                                                                             

He turned badass.                                                                                                                       

And became...

Derecho Dan!                                                                                                                    

(Oh! Derecho Dan!...Oh! Derecho Dan!)

Upon hearing the thunder, Police Chief Tom Graber lost the last few crumbs of his patience. For a full week he’d been hunting down Little Dan Newman without success. He'd come to Rockport Hospital that day to see Little Dan's mother, Wilmena and tell her the happy news about Little BD. He'd been thought dead in the Gas & Lube explosion, and was found alive and unharmed. Rowena Gridley, Wilmena's younger sister was in the room when he arrived. The heraldic thunderclaps of Storm 5.6 incited Chief Graber to forget the niceties and whip out his handcuffs.  


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Starr Gazer


Aries: The Ram likes things fast, however, during this time of ‘giving up things’ the Ram would benefit from letting go of its ego. Surrender to the divine timing of the Universe, be patient.

Taurus: Venus, the Planet of Love & Money is in the Bull’s Pen this month, asking you to surrender the fearful stories you are telling yourself…stay in the moment & eat pierogis.

Gemini: The Twins are usually easygoing, relaxed & the life of the party, but this month, you’ve got a bug up your butt, let go of controlling your relationships, it’s so unlike you.

Cancer: The Crab earned its wings this month, the only thing the Universe is asking you to give up is…surrender yourself to the beauty of nature, relax, take a break & revel in the ecstasy of it.

Leo: You’re not normally known for your stubbornness, however, this month listening to the others in the Jungle will give you the much needed insight into the needs & wants of others.

Virgo: OK Virgo, we all know you like to keep everything organized in your neat little corner of the world, but there’s a whole Universe out there waiting to be discovered, give up your routine!


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020



Men, grab your wallets securely and women, make doubly sure your purses are extra tightly closed!

There are 2 real estate tax levies on the primary ballot March 17. Cuyahoga County has the HIGHEST real estate and sales tax rates in the State of Ohio, which is NOT a distinction to be proud of. These ever-rising rates are hardest on those living (a more correct word is “existing”) on fixed incomes. There will come a day when the ever-increasing tax burden will force many to leave Cuyahoga County.

One levy is Issue 28, which concerns Lakewood residents and I join my fellow resident who urged voters to vote it down in a recent issue of The Lakewood Observer. While 6 years have elapsed since a levy was put before the voters in Lakewood, 1 component of the current levy is a portion set aside for maintenance/general permanent improvements - a similar split took place with the last levy.  

To an accountant, this is a blank check and accountants have no use whatsoever for handing out blank checks. Also from an accounting standpoint, consider the “cost per pupil” - Lakewood’s cost of $13,051 is $3,327 above the statewide average of $9,724.* This indicates there are economies other schools are benefitting from that Lakewood is not.  

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Last Chance For Listen & Learn With Dr. Barnes

On Wednesday, March 11 at 6 pm, Superintendent Mike Barnes will hold his final Listen & Learn session of the school year. These sessions are informal, one-hour chats about anything Lakewood City Schools. The location has been changed from Taft Center of Innovation to the Ranger Cafe at Lakewood High. Bring your questions, comments, and ideas! On another note, the Open House for the Taft Center that was originally scheduled for March 11 has been postponed to a date to be determined.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

LHS To Perform "The Addams Family" March 19-21

The Lakewood High Barnstormers Drama Club will perform The Addams Family March 19-21 at 7 pm in the Civic Auditorium. Over 100 LHS students are involved in the musical as actors, musicians, and crew members -- it's a show you won't want to miss! Tickets can be purchased in advance for $8 by calling the LHS Book Room at 216-529-4047; tickets will be held at will call. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $10.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Harding Club Lends Hand To Senior Shoppers

Nearly 10 years ago as a teacher at Garfield Middle School, Pam Thompson saw a need for bringing together girls outside the classroom to form a group that could encourage and support each other during the often difficult middle school years. She wanted a group where the girls could form strong bonds and a sense of belonging. That group became the Margaret Warner Ladies Luncheon Club thanks to a Margaret Warner Educational Grant from the Lakewood Rangers Education Foundation and is in its third iteration at Harding.

Beyond the relationship building within the group, Thompson strived to share experiences with the girls outside of their school community with trips to local colleges and museums. She also added a service component where the girls helped senior citizens and people with disabilities with shopping at Giant Eagle twice a month after school. The club has since survived two building moves for Thompson and is now thriving at Harding Middle School as the Margaret Warner Volunteers.

“I believe the club is so important for all girls, but in particular the middle school age, as that is when students are trying to come to terms with the oftentimes challenging phase of growing from childhood to adolescence and how to 'fit in' within their peer group without compromising their integrity,” Thompson said about the club.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Lakewood Rec Looking To Fill Dozens Of Summer Job Opportunities

What better job for the summer than at a swimming pool, ball field, or summer camp? Take the opportunity to work outside, with kids, making a difference. Lakewood Rec is now hiring to fill many open positions for learn-to-swim instructors, lifeguards, pool attendants, baseball scorekeepers, summer camp counselors and more. 

As winter turns to spring, many of our thoughts turn to warm summer days, filled with playing tee ball, riding the water slide at Madison Park, or making friends at Kids Connection or Ohio Heritage. Lakewood Recreation is hiring seasonal employees to make all those summer memories continue for a new generation. Applications preferred by March 31, 2020. Find position and application details at

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

The Herb Guild Garden Club

The March meeting of the Herb Guild Garden Club will be held on March 11 at Westlake Porter Public Library. The meeting starts at 10:30am and will last until 2 p.m. The guest speaker for March is Carlos E. Ramos, owner of "The Tea Lab" located in Lakewood, Ohio. Their website is He will talk about teas and tisanes-herbs and botanicals. It should prove to be an informative presentation with various teas to sample and purchase.

The Herb Guild is a local organization that meets on the second Wednesday of the month at Westlake Porter Public Library in Westlake, Ohio (27333 Center Ridge Road) in the Porter Room. New members and guests are always welcome. For more information on the upcoming meeting, call 440-582-0191 or visit our website You can also find us on Facebook under The Herb Guild.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020


In the last issue of the Lakewood Observer we incorrectly added Katie Ingersoll's title "Healthy Lakewood Foundation Secretary." Her letter in support of the School Levy Issue 28, was sent as a resident and parent, not in association with "Healthy Lakewood." Sorry for the mix-up.

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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Vote FOR Issue 33 To Keep Seniors Independent, Support Life Flight & Trauma Center

I urge my Lakewood neighbors to vote FOR Issue 33, Cuyahoga County’s Health and Human Services levy.

400,000 Cuyahoga County residents are helped by the services paid for by Issue 33: seniors who want to remain in their homes; kids in preschool; children at risk of abuse or neglect; people who need mental health or addiction care; foster kids; people with disabilities, and more.

On top of this, Issue 33 helps all of us through investments in MetroHealth’s life flight, trauma center, and neonatal intensive care unit.

The City of Lakewood will benefit from Issue 33: our senior services, juvenile diversion, and youth programs receive more than $500,000 in funding from Cuyahoga County that would be strengthened by passing the levy. As Chair of City Council’s Finance Committee, I can affirm this is a meaningful amount of funds to help our human services operate each year. Lakewood could not serve as many residents without this cost share from the County.


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Volume 16, Issue 5, Posted 10:32 AM, 03.04.2020

Vote Yes On Issue 28

I am voting for Issue 28 to support the Lakewood City Schools. As a parent of two current students in the district and a third future student, my family has experienced the wonderful teachers, robust curriculum, and many co-curricular opportunities the district offers. My wife and I have children in two different schools each of whom are engaged in a positive, challenging environment. The educators in our children’s lives have been very impactful and have met our children where they are academically and challenged them to move forward.  Our children have learned a great deal from their peers who represent diverse cultures.

As a member of the Lakewood Board of Education I fully support district leadership. Our leaders have demonstrated excellent community engagement as evidenced by the Vision of a Lakewood Graduate. The district has also been fiscally responsible, given that nearly seven years have elapsed since the last levy. Sound fiscal stewardship has carried the district far, however operational costs have risen. Issue 28 will relieve the district of a deficit spending situation and ensure that our schools and community stay strong.


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Volume 16, Issue 4, Posted 4:27 PM, 02.18.2020

Cox Communications Returns To Award $30K In Grants To Local Nonprofits

Despite the important work nonprofits and community organizations do in the communities they serve, many are lacking the modern technology tools needed to perform their missions to the fullest. To bridge this technology gap, Cox Communications today announced the 2020 recipients for its “Tech Boosts” program, which awards grants to nonprofit groups committed to investing in technology equipment for the betterment of its patrons and mission.

In Ohio, the company presented GiGi’s Playhouse Cleveland with a $15,000 Tech Boost grant. GiGi’s will use its grant to purchase high-tech devices ranging from light tables and tablet devices to fitness trackers and a silhouette cutting machine. The new equipment will help GiGi’s enhance its free, purposeful programs in ways that support learners with Down syndrome who thrive under a multi-sensory approach. In addition, the new equipment will reduce reliance on a handful of devices between volunteers and employees, a change that will allow GiGi’s team to be even more hands-on with program participants and more efficient in their instruction.

This marks the third year of the Cox Communications Tech Boosts program, and the mission remains the same: to invest in technology equipment and services that support a common goal of enriching the lives of community members and fulfilling their missions to the fullest. The company recognizes community organizations across its Northeast footprint, which includes Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Ohio.


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Volume 16, Issue 4, Posted 4:27 PM, 02.18.2020

Buy Nothing Lakewood Brings Small Town Feel To Big City

Buy Nothing Lakewood member Brandi Larsen performs wedding ceremony on Brooklyn Bridge for fellow members Brittany & Nick Davies.

Lakewood is known for being one of the larger cities in Cuyahoga County. In fact, it is the most dense city in the state. The over 50,000 person population of Lakewood is not preventing residents from creating the small town feel by encouraging interactions with their neighbors through sharing goods, services, and experiences. One of the ways they are able to create this environment is through their participation in the global Facebook phenomenon of the Buy Nothing Project.  

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Volume 16, Issue 1, Posted 4:27 PM, 02.18.2020