Lakewood's Own "Food Network" Served A La Cart

Attention fans of TV cooking shows! Did you know that Lakewood has its own "food network" of sorts? Well, yes!

A year ago, the Lakewood Community Services Center, headed by Executive Director Trish Rooney, determined that free, live cooking demonstrations would be advantageous to low income seniors receiving emergency food distributions through LCSC. The Cove Community Center (formerly Cove United Methodist Church) was about to open, and it welcomed the idea of hosting the presentations as a way to increase attendance for their new facility. Lakewood's Three Arches Foundation provided funding for the program through grants.

The series title, "A La Cart," is in recognition of the inanimate star of the show, the "Charlie Cart," which makes it logistically possible. The Charlie Cart can best be described as a "kitchen on wheels" and is used to teach basic cooking techniques. And, stationed behind the Charlie Cart each month at Cove is a chef from one of Lakewood's eclectic eateries!

Although devised to assist older adults in the preparation of wholesome meals, A La Cart, as stated in the inaugural demo by Melt Bar and Grilled's Matt Fish, is "geared toward seniors but really geared toward everybody." Now, chef-inspired menu items from some of your Lakewood favorites can become part of your personal repertoire! Observing the process step by step, accompanied by simple directions and tips, makes it easier to try at home.

Once visitors are seated within the Cove Center, the featured guest prepares a dish from their establishment right before your eyes. The action is simultaneously filmed, and a screen above the demo offers a bird's eye view of what's happening directly below (via Akron Drone Services). Questions from the audience are welcomed, and recipe cards are handed out (also to keep) so you can follow along. Soon you will experience enticing aromas and observe as mouth watering dishes come into being. At the conclusion, samples are offered.


Read Full Story
Volume 19, Issue 21, Posted 9:45 AM, 11.08.2023

Where The Elite Meet To Eat

Do you know or remember in the 40's, 50's and possibly into the 60's, when family entertainment was gathering around the huge, floor model Philco Radio?  We would be listening to Burns and Allen, Mr. and Mrs. North, the crime mystery detectives, and The Lone Ranger when suddenly a phone would ring through the radio's speakers!

A male voice answered with, "Duffy's Tavern, where the elite meet to eat. Archie the manager speakin'. Duffy ain't here… Oh. Hello Duffy." And then the laughter began!

Well, you might like to know that Lakewood has a place where the elite meet to eat as well and it's "The Place to Be" on Warren at Detroit Avenue. I like to refer to it as Lakewood's "Souper Bowl" as Chef George makes outstanding soups-- so good, that many patrons take orders home with them. Different every day, some of my favorites are classics like Manhatten style Clam Chowder, Tomato Basil, Broccoli Cheddar, and homemade Vegetable. Then there are unique soups known only to TPTB, like George's unique Stuffed Green Pepper soup, and the Creamy Lobster and Shrimp soup. So good.

Sometimes, I'll even order soup with my breakfast, which is great as well. The list of omelets are all worth trying. Don't overlook the "Greek" or "Crazy" omelets. You can request to "add color" green for spinach or white for onions. The staff is accommodating and the service is outstanding!

As you enter The Place To Be, Maria will greet and seat you. Christine, Faye or Poppi will take your order and engage in pleasant conversation before turning your order in to Chris, Jimmy, Gus, and "Souperman" George for perfect preparation.

Try it, you'll like it. The food, the conversation, and the laughs.

Read Full Story
Volume 19, Issue 5, Posted 8:21 PM, 03.01.2023

Arctic Igloos At Georgetown

Once recognized as dwellings for those who live way up north, igloos have now appeared elsewhere becoming a trend in outdoor dining. Georgetown restaurant here in Lakewood is one example of where they can be found. According to Mickey Krivosh, the eatery's owner, they were the first in Northeast Ohio to install "Arctic Igloos."

Krivosh's two children, Ryan and Jennifer, proposed the idea about six years ago while he and his wife Patty were in Florida. At first Dad wasn't receptive to the suggestion, but the kids prevailed and he is glad they did. It actually increased business during cold weather as patrons were still able to enjoy a meal on the patio. The igloos are generally put up in October and removed by the end of April. Seasonal decor added for holidays such as Halloween and Valentine's Day contribute to the festive ambiance.

There are four structures at this site and each seats up to eight guests. They are heated so for the most part feeling warm enough should not be a concern. There may be specific reasons to reserve an igloo. Couples have become engaged in one. Others may throw a birthday party or have a "Mom's night out." Otherwise, it's simply an out of the ordinary way to commune with others over good food. For that, plenty of menu options are available at Georgetown. There are appetizers and pizzas, salads and soups, and an eclectic mix of entrees such as pasta, seafood or meat dishes.

Read Full Story
Volume 19, Issue 4, Posted 12:20 PM, 02.15.2023

A Taste Of Europe Here In Lakewood

Unable to travel abroad right now? You can at least savor the flavors of Europe by visiting a splendid shop located on the western end of Madison Avenue.  Owned by Dafina Bedini from Albania, A Taste of Europe has been operating since 2009. Relatively modest in size, the shelves are teeming with a bounty of offerings. There is something for just about everyone.

Noodles, preserves, canned herring, oh my! Quite a variety of edibles beckon from every corner. Don't be intimidated by unfamiliar alphabets or by trying to pronounce what's printed on the packaging. That's part of the fun of entering a zone of international culinary delights!

Coffee flavored candies (France), bruschetta (Italy) and muesli (Germany) are examples of how many different nations are represented. It doesn't stop there. A Taste of Europe has a worldwide selection of wine, beer and tea. Also stocked are syrups (Slovenia) that can be used for homemade sparkling soda.  Imported meats and cheese populate the deli counter. Takeout catering for ten or more people is available as well, chicken paprikash being one dish that can be ordered. Perhaps now is the time to check out that store you may have driven by often but never took the time to investigate.

Erin Radoi's husband is originally from Romania so she began shopping at this location because of him and has grown to appreciate it for herself. She feels that "Eastern European cuisine is very, very underrated." There is no shortage of items from the region here with products from Hungary, Croatia and North Macedonia to name a few.


Read Full Story
Volume 17, Issue 20, Posted 2:04 PM, 11.17.2021

Help Wanted Now!

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

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

Read Full Story
Volume 17, Issue 16, Posted 1:00 PM, 08.04.2021

Cheery Coffee And Crepes

We had a delightful crepe breakfast today, 4/22, at Brewella’s on Madison! There had been a bit more snow overnight, but the sun was out in all its glory; the blue sky was a delight. The kind preparer had produced 2 excellent banana crepes which had remained quite warm in their take-out boxes, and the coffees, both the drip and the cappuccino, were hot and comforting. As we requested, we ate at the little table just outside the shop on the sidewalk and watched the life of Lakewood slowly pass us by. So precious!

Read Full Story
Volume 17, Issue 9, Posted 12:23 PM, 05.05.2021

Warmth Is Found 365 Days A Year At The Summer House

What was once an iconic restaurant on Lake Rd. back in the day, has gotten a face lift. The old Swingos, and before that the Silver Quill on the ground floor of the Carlyle building is now the Summer House. Swingos closed its doors in February of 2009, staying empty until Tony George, Cleveland restaurateur decided to put his signature on it. George spent three years renovating the place, opening in March of 2020, only to be closed due to Covid-19 a week later.

Summer House Executive Chef Vinnie Cimino and sous chef Ryan Boone took a grave situation and turned it into a positive, the starting of Cleveland Family Meal. Cimino and Boone turned Summer House’s emergent kitchen into a bustling food bank for those in need, particularly restaurant workers, who often work paycheck to paycheck.

The Summer House has since reopened, after Gov. DeWine permitted restaurants to reopen in late spring. However, the giving didn’t stop there. Tony George has dedicated Summer House to the memory of his late son, Michael T. George, known as Mikey to the community. Mikey, a student at St. Ed’s, lost his battle with cancer in June of 2019. Profits from the Summer House go to a non-profit organization based in Lakewood, called Awakening Angels. Awakening Angels shares the profits with the Red Cross, the Michael T. George Center, Down Syndrome Research and others.


Read Full Story
Volume 16, Issue 18, Posted 5:22 PM, 09.16.2020

Heaven On Earth At The Elmwood Bakery

Being that I lived in Lakewood in the late 80s and thru the 90s I don’t know how in God’s name I missed this little slice of Heaven. Since I moved back to Lakewood in 2016, I’ve become a serious gastronome. Let’s face it, how do you live in Lakewood without become a foodie, oenophile, or a libationist?

Read Full Story
Volume 16, Issue 17, Posted 4:54 PM, 09.02.2020

MTO - Madison Take Out Opens!

Bright sunny days have finally arrived in Lakewood! If you’re dividing your time between hiking, Zooming and social distancing with friends, leave it to Madison Take Out, a new healthy food cafe near Madison Park, to keep you well-fed and feeling your best when you’re on the go.  

Read Full Story
Volume 16, Issue 16, Posted 5:22 PM, 09.16.2020

Guy Fieri Eat Your Heart Out At The Red Rose Café

On my never ending search to try each and every restaurant in Lakewood, I’ve always wondered about The Red Rose Café. Living on Atkins, I drive past the Red Rose quite often, but just never ventured in. It’s a true neighborhood dive bar, and I mean that in the sincerest kindest way. Guy Fieri would love it here.

No frills, no superficial razzmatazz, just ordinary good food, good service, good prices and good people. I’m not surprised when I found out who the owners are, Brian & Rose Kirschnick. I worked with Brian at the Public House, (Kamm’s Corners) in the early 90s, and Rose was a customer, two of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet.

I went with my friend, Sparky, who ordered the Chicken Philly, and I ordered the Bacon-Blue Burger, both sandwiches were filling, and hit the spot. I’m not much of a beer drinker, so I went for my old standby Dewar’s & water, and Sparky had a Bacardi & coke or two. Service was good, prices are good, and the food nailed it. They have deep-fried Oreos, topped with chocolate sauce & powdered sugar, on the menu for dessert, which I might have to try next time.


Read Full Story
Volume 16, Issue 14, Posted 4:19 PM, 07.15.2020

The Mars Bar Truly IS Out Of This World

I moved back from Cali to Lakewood, almost four years ago, slowly getting around to trying all the gastropubs. Always hesitant on trying the Mars Bar, an icon since the 40s. To me it seemed to have a dark “I don’t want to go in there” type of look. Boy, was I ever WRONG!

Walking down the street the other night I checked it out, after all they’ve remolded, with an open-air look, patio seating front and back. Once inside I discovered it’s the only bar in Lakewood that faces the street from East to West, which is an anomaly in itself.

I sat at the bar, was greeted warmly by Audria, and inquired about their wine. Much to my surprise and delight was a wine list by the glass and/or bottle which would please any oenophile, the wines coming from Napa Valley. I ordered a Storypoint Pinot Noir, impressed by the hip large wine glass.

Sitting at the bar, looking out into the street, was a welcome feeling not to have my back to the door. After Audria explained the menu, I went with George’s Original Gyro, a combination of beef & lamb, with the tzatziki sauce, a secret recipe handed down from George’s mother. By far, that was the best Gyro ever, topping the late-night Gyro stands when I worked in the flats in the 80s.


Read Full Story
Volume 16, Issue 12, Posted 3:23 PM, 06.17.2020

A Taste Of Tijuana On The Avenue

Who needs Tijuana, when John and Jill Crino bring a little bit of Tequila, Spanish Mexican style food, authentic daily homemade sauces, colorful artistry, and southern hospitality to Lakewood? Taco Tontos, situated in Bird Town, on Madison Avenue is a family-owned business that offers up more than the large chains and franchises can compete with.

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 20, Posted 4:59 PM, 10.16.2019

Lakewood Has It All, From The Eastside Of Town, To The West End Tavern

About thirty years ago, when I was in my prime, I used to hang out at the taverns in Lakewood, didn’t everybody? Then life happened, I went through a divorce, moved to Avon Lake, then San Diego. Fast forward, life happened again, my mom passed and now I’m not only back in Ohio, but back in Lakewood.

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 16, Posted 3:19 PM, 08.21.2019

You Can Have Your Home Fries And Crispy Too!

It was a drizzly, humid morning in mid-July, and I was hungry. I also needed to check out the thrift store to find a black bowtie for an event I was catering. First things first, my stomach was grumbling, I had visions of Audrey ll screaming “Feed Me” to Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors.

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 15, Posted 2:59 PM, 08.07.2019

Banking Made Simple Food Truck Day

Many factors are reshaping how customers think about banking. Citizens Bank is moving at the speed of change by putting the customer at the heart of everything they do.

“Customers want convenience, transparency and flexibility,” says Chris Powell of Citizens Bank. They are paving the way in innovation & technology, leading with their mobile banking app. The app makes it easy to stay in control of your finances, whether you're checking your balances, paying a bill or even making deposits on the go! It also gives you the ability to you to do your banking wherever you are.

The Citizens Bank in Lakewood on Belle & Madison is hosting a fun event on Friday, July 12th from 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., to demonstrate just how easy it is to do banking while on lunch with the Mobile Banking app. “We want our customers to know all of their options when it comes to how they can do their banking,” said Licensed Banker Ernesto Cruz II.

They will have the Barrio food truck and Dang Good Foods food truck in their parking lot to add in the fun and provide a couple selections for purchase, as well as free ice cream (while supplies last)! All are welcome.

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 13, Posted 6:32 PM, 07.03.2019

"Brewella's" -- A Walk Down Memory Lane

On a road trip to New Orleans, Lakewoodite’s Chris Murphy and partner Joe Keppler toyed with the idea of creating a place similar to visiting your grandmother’s home, where you felt welcomed, comfortable and well fed. After much brainstorming with friends, their baby, Brewella, was born in late fall of 2018. 

I moved back to Lakewood from San Diego, almost three years ago now, still trying to catch up with all the new eclectic shops/restaurants Lakewood has to offer. Last Sunday morning, I awoke to another gorgeous Sunday, and walked a half block down the street to Brewella’s. 

Being a Cancer, (Zodiac sign) I love everything quaint, collectible, and vintage. Walking into Brewella’s I felt l hit the jackpot! A vintage shop, that serves coffee, and delectable crepes, savory & sweet. Was I really awake on this Sunday morning, or am I still dreaming?

Brewella is Vincent Van Gogh meets Georgia O’Keeffe and they had a bunch of artistic offspring. I was overwhelmed with all the artifacts, teacups, paintings and collectibles. First things first, I thought, let’s eat. 

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 13, Posted 6:32 PM, 07.03.2019

Grab A Hot Italian And Go To The Solstice Steps

Now that the last snow has dropped its last snowflake (we hope), it's time to grab the suntan lotion and head to the lake. The boss is in an all-day meeting, the kids are still in school, and the dog's taking a nap, almost heaven. You've been waiting for this moment all week; solitude, nature, and a Hot Italian. 

Read Full Story
Volume 15, Issue 8, Posted 12:14 PM, 04.17.2019

Rush Inn: Food Gem In Lakewood

I'm almost not sure I want to share this story for fear of too many people finding out about what I consider the best place to eat, drink, hang out, take your date, in all of Lakewood.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 23, Posted 2:28 PM, 12.04.2018

There’s a New Kid In Town On The Avenue

Madison Avenue, make room for Rood Food and Pie, Lakewood’s newest addition to the west-end of Madison Avenue, located on the corner of Atkins at 17001 Madison.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 22, Posted 4:01 PM, 11.20.2018

Review: Distill Table-Lunch

Review of Distill Table

Friday September 7, 2018


Finding lunch options that offer a wide selection of proteins and grains can be tricky on the west side, especially in finding those who prioritize sourcing those items locally. And even though the Madison Avenue corridor in Lakewood has added some wonderful dining choices, many still do not offer lunch. For those reasons, the addition of the brand-new Distill Table at the Western Reserve Distillers at 14221 Madison Ave at the reworked Fridrich Moving Company building, which offers both, is very welcome for any daytime diner.


Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 19, Posted 2:26 PM, 10.02.2018

L.B.M. - It's A Secret

Upon reading the recent edition of the Lakewood Observer I noticed OB, (Jim O’Bryan) which is how I’ve always known him, from my early bartender days at the Lakewood Rush Inn in the 80s, is asking people to check out the culinary scene in Lakewood and write about it. 

Upon moving back to Lakewood after nearly ten years in San Diego as a chef, I thought what a great idea. My passion is writing and cooking, what a great combo. Since moving back I’ve been slowly but surely discovering the plethora of culinary delights Lakewood now has to offer. I’m on a mission.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 16, Posted 7:15 PM, 08.21.2018

Coming Soon: Clifton Diner Back, Better Than Ever

I first sat down with Perry Drosos  about two months ago. A mutual friend had called nearly a year ago and said, “Hey, Clifton Diner is coming back, how would like to go through it and talk with the owners?”

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 15, Posted 6:00 PM, 07.17.2018

A Lakewood Gem: Szechwan Garden

Lakewood is a city of abundance when it comes to choices for dining out. And with so many options for Chinese cuisine, I have discovered Chinese restaurants are not made equally. While there are so many little gems in our beloved city there is one that I believe that deserves to be highlighted. Szechwan Garden is a long established hidden treasure that seems to be a hidden secret among local Lakewoodites. Standing in their little plaza near Bunts and Detroit Rd. for over 30 years without fail they deliver offerings consistently, fresh, and seemingly unique in their respective dishes. Szechwan Garden rises above the rest in my humble opinion.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 14, Posted 5:57 PM, 07.17.2018

Best Asian Food Delivered!

With a handful of Asian restaurants delivering in Lakewood and most using the same menu, or menu with slight variations you may not think there is a big difference, but we have found there is. China Garden in Marc's Plaza by Sinagra Park seems light years ahead of the rest. Don't believe me, give it a try. Great food, delivery is quick. 216.226.3434

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 12, Posted 11:16 PM, 06.05.2018

"Salt" Perfectly Seasoned

I had been hearing about "Salt" since they opened about a year ago. Been meaning to try the place and finally got around to checking out the restaurant on the the westside of Lakewood at 17625 Detroit. Owner Jessica Parkinson turned a dive bar into one of the best restaurants in Cleveland. In 2018 head chef Jill Vedaa was a semi-finalist in the prestigous James Beard awards, as well as winning "Guy's Grocery Games" on the Food Network.

The restaurant is painted completely black. Accented with soft lighting and the warm glow of Himilayan Salt lamps, it works. We arrived around 7 p.m. on Friday night, busy and on a wait. Since we didn't have a reservation, we opted for the only table for two out on the patio. Not as bustling as inside with the bar, it was quiet and nicely decorated with succulents boxed on the tall black wood fencing blocking out the parking lot. 

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 11, Posted 10:43 PM, 06.05.2018

We Sneak In The Back Door At Melt For A Peek And Talk With Cleveland Restaurant Royalty, Matt Fish

Perhaps no single business or restaurant has done more for building the Lakewood brand and our name as a destination for food and entertainment than Matt Fish’s Melt Restaurant.

Not only is it the go-to place in the city with its unique menu, but Matt Fish and his team are just promotional machines. From the moment Matt put his twist on Melted Cheese in what was Bud’s White Door, it has become the darling of the Food Network, Cooking Network, Playboy Magazine, Esquire Magazine, Cleveland Magazine, TV, Radio and on and on and on.

Whenever I have a friend or client stopping in Lakewood, no matter where they are from they always have one request, “Can we go to Melt?” As I mentioned it has become a nationwide obsession, and the crown jewel in Foodwood. For decades it was Pier W and their upscale dining, (see article next page) but now Melt is the one.

Matt was just added to the very prestigious group of Cleveland Culinary Royalty this year by Noelle Celeste’s “Cleveland Eats” publication. And it is well deserved.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 10, Posted 12:39 PM, 05.01.2018

Lakewood's Best Kept Secret...

One of Lakewood’s Best Kept Secrets…

Everyone knows that Pier W is a destination for that special occasion. And should know that Sunday brunch can only be equaled on a cruise ship for variety. It's the most romantic place to dine, according to Cleveland Magazine and others.The happy hour is exceptional, but few people think about it as a great place for lunch.

Lunch at Pier W brings you the same great views, service and exceptional food, at a much smaller price. This makes it a great place to stop by, relax, entertain clients and friends while having a very special time for all. 

For this lunch we arrived around 1pm, hoping to avoid any rush and getting a window seat. But there were enough people left from the early seating relaxing and enjoying a cocktail or dessert filling the lower deck. The hostess reminded us that “it is best to make a reservation for a window seat” and that we were welcome to wait in the bar, and one should open shortly. As this meal was more about lunch, and talking with friends than the view, we said any seat would do. She still found us a nice seat in the upper section with a spectacular view of the lake, and away from the crowd so we could talk.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 9, Posted 12:39 PM, 05.01.2018

Local Customer Service HERO

It was your average work day like any other when I made a last minute stop after work for some quick dinner.  I remember a week earlier my husband telling me the Mr. Hero owner was so nice and the place was so clean so I figured I'd stop there. 

There were a few people ahead of me in line and so I sat down. As a previous storefront owner I pay attention to the small details just out of habit sometimes. I looked up from scrolling my phone to notice that the owner was waiting on the customers. 

How did I know he was the owner? I just had a feeling by the way he was thanking everyone when he handed them their meal "Thank you very much, you have a wonderful evening and I hope to see you again very soon." Aw, how nice, I thought. I looked around and also noticed how spotless everthing was, impressive, then we begain to chat. This man was so friendly, we talked about small business, and he spoke very highly of "his customers."  It was refreshing and, of course when he handed me my meal, he also thanked me and invited me back real soon.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 4, Posted 12:12 PM, 02.20.2018

Burger At Coffee Pot, GREAT!

I have had many a great breakfast at the Coffee Pot up in Birdtown, but it had been a while since I had lunch there. I remember they had a good burger so a chance to get one for free from Foodwood, and the Lakewood Observer was all I needed to take a break from work in Rocky River and head over to the Coffee Pot.

WOW!!!! Was that a good burger!!! A Cajun Blue Burger from the menu, done medium rare. It was a big burger done perfectly, the waitress was young, and very pleasant, offering all sorts of nice additions. Onions? Red? White? Grilled? Raw? Mayonnaise? Lettuce? Tomato? One Slice? Two? Any other cheeses? Grilled Bun? Really it was almost overwhelming. When it came, it looked perfect and tasted better.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 2, Posted 9:51 PM, 01.23.2018

Lakewood, No It's Foodwood!

In the past couple years Lakewood has become a destination for good food, dining and entertainment experiences. This year we will be partnering with Foodwood© on a series of articles about Lakewood restaurants, bars and nightspots from an insider perspective. We have seen many lists of “the Best of” and noticed-- even been upset-- that some of the best places we know were not included. “How could they possibly ignore…?”

So with the help of professionals in the food and entertainment business we will take a look at menus, dining rooms, and kitchens and background to help you learn more about your favorite spots, and learn even more about how and why they happened, and who and what history molds not just who they are, but their signature dishes. This will be an interesting ride, we promise you.

Read Full Story
Volume 14, Issue 1, Posted 4:06 PM, 01.09.2018

Movie Review Of "The Mountain Between Us"

The film, “The Mountain Between Us” is a dog, survival, and romance movie directed by Hany Abu-Assad, a Dutch Palestinian film director (Rana’s Wedding, Paradise Now, Omar, The Idol). This 112 minute long plane crash movie took place in the High Uintas Wilderness Utah mountains (actually filmed in British Columbian mountains), some ranging over 13,000 feet high. The two main characters, Dr. Ben Bass, a black neurosurgeon (Idris Elba, No Good Deed, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Star Trek Beyond), and Alex Martin, a white Photojournalist (Kate Winslet, Titanic, The Dressmaker, Collateral Beauty, Wonder Wheel, All the King’s Men) are the only two passengers along with a dog on a two engine commuter plane. They are stranded at an airport in Boise, Idaho while each has an emergency need to get to their destination, Denver, – she is scheduled to marry her fiancé, and he for a needed surgery.  They manage to hire a private charter plane flown by an experienced pilot, Walter (Beau Bridges, Underground Kids, Dirty Politics, Lawless Range). Walter is in a rush, and does not file a flight plan.  He also brings along his yellow Labrador dog.  Initially, the flight seemed sort of normal with some upsetting turbulence due to an approaching storm.  Then, suddenly as the flight is heading into mountains, Walter suffers some sort of seizure – probably a heart attack, and dies. They manage to land on a small mountain ridge, and Alex suffers some leg damage. The dog and Ben do not appear injured. They have very little in the way of supplies, and cell phones do not work. Ben buries Walter in the small plateau.  Initially, they think they will be rescued.  They try signaling a high flying passenger jet, but to no avail.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 24, Posted 3:19 PM, 12.19.2017

A Superfine New Year's Eve

To celebrate the anniversary of the building of the Templar Motors Factory in 1917 and the cars that were assembled there, from 1918 to 1924, the Lakewood Historical Society is hosting a New Year’s Eve birthday party in the original Templar Motors factory building. Live music, dancing, entertainment, an authentic speakeasy, food stations and more, promise a fun-filled evening. For more information and tickets, contact the Lakewood Historical Society at 216-221-7343 or Don’t miss the opportunity to have your picture taken behind the wheel of a 100-year-old Templar Motors car!

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 23, Posted 10:05 PM, 12.05.2017

Movie Review Of "Spider-Man: Homecoming"

“Spider-Man:Homecoming,” is a 2017 Marvel Comics action movie featuring a teenage superhero, Spider-Man, and his adventures.  Spider-Man Homecoming is the sixth Spider-Man movie. The following films are the previous movies: Spider-Man 2002, Spider-Man 2 2004, Spider-Man 3 2007, The Amazing Spider-Man 2012, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 2014 with the seventh movie projected for 2019.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 19, Posted 5:13 PM, 10.03.2017

Movie Review Of "Wonder Woman"

The movie, “Wonder Woman” is a 2017 one hundred forty one minute action American movie featuring a partial mythological and partial human D C Comics superhero woman and her adventures. In the current movie scene, there are two woman superhero movies, Wonder Woman with Gal Gadot as lead, and Atomic Blonde with Charlize Theron as the star. The characters of these two superheroes are an interesting contrast with both being warriors. Wonder Woman has a variety of mythological strength and mysterious powers including a magical powerful wide wrist band and a special Lasso of Hestia. Atomic Blonde is an intelligent, tough killer British spy, an expert with guns, and has amazing karate-like fighting skills.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 16, Posted 6:15 PM, 08.15.2017

6th Annual Bike For Beck Includes Super Saturday

Beck Center for the Arts is hosting its sixth annual Bike for Beck, a fundraising cycling event, on Saturday, August 19. Cyclists will take to the Cleveland Metroparks between 7 and 9:15 a.m., beginning and ending at Beck Center, located at 17801 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood. Participants may choose from 12-, 25-, or 60-mile rides. The community is invited to a FREE, family-friendly arts and music festival at Beck Center from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Proceeds from Bike for Beck will benefit quality arts education programs at Beck Center. Registration is available online at

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 15, Posted 5:08 PM, 08.01.2017

"Custer's Last Fight" Finds A Home In Lakewood

This week one of Lakewood’s favorite restaurants and watering holes, the West End, got a special treat. Longtime bar patron Ray Dankel sent Parnell and the Shepards a package that when they opened it, they were amazed. A rather large, very colorful original movie poster from the 1925 Francis Ford film, “Custer’s Last  Fight.”  "Custer’s Last Fight" is the re-edit of “Custer’s Last Raid” with another 60 minutes of Indian fights and the now banned Sioux Ghost Dance. The film was directed by Francis Ford, older brother of legendary Western Film Director John Ford. The last one to come up for auction went for an undisclosed amount but reports were over $15,000 US. So go get a great lunch, fun dinner, one of the best Sunday brunches in town, and check out this piece of history.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 15, Posted 12:35 PM, 07.18.2017

Movie Review Of "King Arthur"

The movie, “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword” is a 2017 adventure re-imagining tales of the legendary British King Arthur of the late 400s to early 500s AD, who defended Britain against invading Saxons. While some of the legends and folklore stories of a King Arthur, in part, originate in an 1100s AD literature, “History of the Kings of Britain” by Geoffrey of Monmouth, this film is not a documentary of true events.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 13, Posted 3:03 PM, 07.05.2017

Local Webshow Weirdos Open A New "Boo-tique"

Creepy Cleveland natives Janet and James, AKA Janet Decay and Grimm Gorri have opened a curiosity/resale shop on 13349 Madison Avenue called The Mummy And The Monkey's Thrift Crypt. It is named after the couple's successful webshow, The Mummy and The Monkey, in order to continue a local tradition that spans over fifty years! Influenced by Cleveland TV greats like: Ghoulardi, Superhost, Big Chuck & Lil' John, as well as nationally syndicated shows such as: Elvira, and Mystery Science Theatre 3000, they strive to deliver wacky comedy bits and screen cheesy B-movies.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 12, Posted 3:03 PM, 07.05.2017

Movie Review Of "The Zookeeper's Wife"

“The Zookeeper’s Wife” is a complex World War II film with much tragedy, unselfish bravery, and care for war victims as well as ongoing love for zoo animals, and a persistent belief in the future. This 126 minute film occurs at one of the largest and best European zoos, Warsaw Zoo, in 1930s Poland. The movie is based on the non-fiction book, “The Zookeeper’s Wife” by Diane Ackerman.  The story originates from diaries of wife, Antonina Zabinski, whose 1968 book, was entitled, “People and Animals.”

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 12, Posted 2:48 PM, 06.20.2017

Join the Lakewood Historical Society for Some "Vintage" Fun

If you find yourself struggling with fun ideas for a Thursday night, the Lakewood Historical Society has a great option for you the evening of May 11th. Come and experience a whole different kind of "vintage" while supporting The Lakewood Historical Society at a fundraising evening featuring a competitive wine tasting, live music, raffles and hors d'ourves. Stroll on the grounds and through the historic Nicholson house on Detroit Avenue in Lakewood while you taste and vote for the best wine of the evening. Some lucky winner will take home cases of wine!

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 9, Posted 4:19 PM, 05.02.2017

Movie Review Of "Going In Style"

“Going in Style” is a modern satirical comedy featuring five established more mature actors and performers. This 2017 movie of 96 minutes is a well done Zach Braff remake of the 1979 version starring George Burns, Art Carney, Lee Strasberg, and Charles Hallahan. In “Going in Style” three older retirees decide to rob a bank, which is unfairly foreclosing on mortgages. The bank, along with their former employer, a steel company which is moving overseas, is responsible for taking away their retirements earned after many years of hard work. This movie does not resemble bank robber movies like “Bonnie and Clyde” with Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty. Regrettably, these now more mature actress and actor were unfairly embarrassed at the 2016 Academy Awards, when Academy management had them initially announce the incorrect winner of the 2016 movie of the year.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 9, Posted 4:19 PM, 05.02.2017

Movie Review Of "Song To Song"

This recent movie, “Song to Song,” appears at first glance to be a musical. The movie does have excerpts from some 86 songs, but is far from a musical. The 145 minute movie reflects a movie pattern of Director Terrence Malick, an award winning director, screenwriter, and producer some of whose movies sort of reflect a French word, “etourdie” or scatterbrain, of a scattering of often small, unclear plots throughout a movie. 

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 10:01 PM, 04.18.2017

Gordon Tower Insurance In Lakewood Once Again to Sponsor Hunger Relief Event: All You Need Is Love (And Food!) On April 29

Gordon Tower Insurance Agency at 14701 Detroit Ave Suite # 362 is once again the Corporate Sponsor along with Auto Owners Insurance for “All You Need is Love (And Food)” Hunger Relief Benefit on Saturday April 29th, 2017 at 6 p.m. to be held this year at Vosh at 1414 Riverside Dr, in Lakewood. “All You Need is Love (And Food)” brings together the timeless music of the Beatles as area musicians perform their favorite tunes while we raise money for this worthy cause! All proceeds benefit Trinity Lakewood Community Outreach (TLCO) a dynamic and fast-growing hunger relief organizations. Please join Gordon Tower Insurance at this wonderful event.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 8, Posted 10:01 PM, 04.18.2017

Movie Review Of "Beauty And The Beast"

The recent movie “Beauty and the Beast,” is a classic love story about a beautiful young village maiden, Belle, and a cursed prince, who became a large, frightening, hairy beast living in a huge, cursed, cold, and forbidding castle. This 2017 Walt Disney Pictures and Mandeville Films 129 minute film features combinations of cartoon characters mingled with live humans, extravagant background music, and excellent solos by cartoon characters and human actors. The movie’s plot is based on a 1700’s French fairy tale, “La Belle et al Bete.” The film has interwoven plots of wonderfully created digitized colors, suspenseful chases, and interactions of the various characters. Many adventures and dangerous threats to the main characters, such as the maiden’s father who gets imprisoned in the castle by the Beast after being chased by some vicious wolves, keep the audience in suspense. A very sturdy and fast white horse is one of the interesting characters, who is ridden toward and escaping from the castle. Belle (Emma Watson of Harry Potter fame) gets threatened by dangerous wolves, but gets rescued by the Beast (Dan Stevens of Secret of the Tomb and TV fame) Though injured in the battle protecting her, he gets care for his injuries by Belle..  She is also courted by a village self-centered ruffian-type of bully, Gaston, who is determined to marry her with all kinds of sly behaviors including threatening to kill her father. Gaston even ties him to a tree where he might be devoured by the wolves. She continues to rebuff Gaston throughout the movie. Earlier in the movie, she had exchanged herself in the castle prison for her father, who she greatly loves, and is determined to save him from the castle prison. When the father tries to explain the Beast to the village people, Gaston gets him imprisoned in a jail-like wagon, where he is to be sent to an insane asylum. Belle ends up in the same wagon. Meanwhile, the villain is off to the castle with the village people to try to kill the Beast. 

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 7, Posted 5:10 PM, 04.04.2017

Breakfast With The Bunny

Calling all toddlers, children, and anyone who likes pancakes! Help to Others, or H2O, is Lakewood’s own unique student volunteer organization that coordinates with numerous charities in the area to teach teenagers to devote some of that teenage angst to a good cause. Students are literally ready to serve again with their Breakfast with the Bunny event on Saturday April 8th, 2017 at the Lakewood Women’s Pavilion. Seating times are at 8:30, 9:30, 10:45 and 11:45 a.m. The menu includes pancakes, sausages, fruit and choice of beverage. To keep you alert for the Easter bunny and tempt your tastebuds, The Root Café will donate their renowned coffee for the morning. Also included is one of kids’ favorite food groups-- syrup!

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 5, Posted 6:18 PM, 03.07.2017

Enjoying Cultural Cleveland: Transportation To Hard-To-Reach Musical Venues

Great music has always been an essential part of the Cleveland experience. The level of talent, the diversity of musical styles and the amazing venues combine to make fine music one of the Greater Cleveland area's best selling points. But let's face it, downtown Cleveland and University Circle can be a pain in the neck for drivers. But wait, there is a solution.

Read Full Story
Volume 13, Issue 4, Posted 6:40 PM, 02.21.2017

Movie Review Of "Arrival"

I recommend the movie “Arrival” because it presents a new version of aliens and a different possible reason for their arrival and identity. It also explores ideas about physics and science, and the alien’s interpretation of time.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 26, Posted 8:36 PM, 12.20.2016

Netflix Review

Netflix is a domain that features many shows that are popular on cable without having to pay lots of money for cable. I have some reviews on some of the shows that they have picked to put on Netflix.  

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 23, Posted 3:38 PM, 11.09.2016

Lincoln Mines Returns November 12th

Lincoln MINEs returns to Lakewood on Saturday, November 12, 2016. Lincoln MINES takes popular video games and transforms them into hands-on learning experiences. Attendees will experience 5 hours of activities for one admission price. Last year this event entertained over 600 attendees with Hands-on Gaming, Minecraft Kids Talks, Crafts, Science and so much more. 

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 20, Posted 5:03 PM, 09.27.2016

Woodstock Brings Smoking Good BBQ To Lakewood

BBQ, Bar-B-Que, Barbecue no matter how you spell it, has been sadly missing on the westside of Cleveland, and in Lakewood. Attempts are spotty at best, with mixed results on different days. Over a decade ago, I was working with the Williams family to bring Hot Sauce Williams to Lakewood. That never materialized and a restaurant you could count on for ribs, brisket and BBQ just didn’t exist.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

Southern Cafe, Damn Was That Good...

...was that the best meal I ever ate in Lakewood?

Let me digress for a moment. It was Friday evening and I was driving with Deb looking for a place to get dinner. We were driving past the Phantasy Theater, and then saw Southern Cafe, so we decided to stop.

The small restaurant was about half filled, and everyone seemed to be enjoying the night. It has a funky but comfortable feeling. One of the servers welcomed us in and handed us menus. The large menu had mainstays of Southern Cuisine, and mainstays of Soul Food. Red and Purple Kool-Aid, Chicken and Waffles, Poor Boys, Pork Chops, Greens, Grits, Catfish, and Peach Cobbler.

I said to the server, “What is the best thing on the menu?” Her answer was, “People rave about the catfish!” I mentioned I am not a fan of catfish and she said, “Neither am I but I liked it!” OK what about the sides? “Try the greens!” I did, though I’m not a fan, and cream corn. Deb wanted an appetizer and ordered up the Grits and Shrimp. Again, I am not a fan of grits. This would be interesting.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:42 PM, 09.13.2016

Movie Night With Hot Dogs, Jazz Concert With Lunch And Dessert: Free Food And Fun At Church Of The Ascension

Missing Lakewood’s free Friday Night Flicks? Bring your blanket or chair to the Church of the Ascension on Friday, September 16 and enjoy DreamWork’s creation, "Home." Free hot dogs will be available from 6 to 7:30 p.m., followed by the movie at 8 p.m. The free movie caps Ascension’s final “Frankfurter Friday” of the season; 2016 was the seventh year of sharing free hot dogs with neighbors every other Friday during the summer. The food and film screening will be on the church’s front lawn, located at 13216 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood. The festivities will be inside in the event of rain.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 19, Posted 5:46 PM, 09.13.2016

A Lot to Enjoy at Romanian Festival This Weekend

Only a few days remain before the delicious Romanian foods are ready to be enjoyed by those attending the annual St. Mary Romanian Festival in the Kamms Corners/Westpark neighborhood.  Who can resist the stuffed cabbage known as "sarmale?"  5,000 of them to be exact.... Romanian "mighty burgers"  called mititei will be ready hot off the grill to be enjoyed with the world-famous Romanian beers and wines.  Also on the menu are the traditional chicken paprikash and hit of the show called "mamaliga cu branza," which is polenta baked with sour cream and cheese.  Nowhere else in town will you find a bigger and more varied selection of home-baked pastries and our now-famous elephant ears.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 17, Posted 10:25 PM, 08.16.2016

Tom Hanks Back Home In Lakewood

In 1977, I was an intern at The Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival in Lakewood, Ohio (my hometown). I was 20 years old. I had been at college (Hiram College), but quit school to work at the festival and pursue my dream of becoming an actress. For that summer, I was part of that company of actors. I had one line in "Taming of the Shrew" and assisted with props on that show, and I ran sound for "Hamlet" (big mistake for that production). It was, however, an amazing time.

As a company of actors, we have stayed (somewhat) in touch, as Facebook has allowed us to do, and we all share the (absolutely extraordinary) fact that Tom Hanks was an intern with us in 1977; a thread that, over the years, has allowed each and everyone of us to say, ‘Well…I’ve worked with Tom Hanks.’ He has been our touchstone. 

This past January we found ourselves quite shaken by the passing of the leading lady of the company, the beloved Bairbre Dowling. Inspired by the depth of emotion this elicited, and the unspoken acknowledgement that time was fleeting, it was suggested that we have a reunion.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 17, Posted 10:25 PM, 08.16.2016

Preparations In Full Swing For St. Mary Romanian Festival

The kitchen at St. Mary Romanian Orthodox Cathedral is a busy place these days as the ladies are preparing foods for the 11th annual Romanian Festival to be held at St. Mary's August 19-21. The cathedral, located at 3256 Warren Road, is a landmark in the Kamms Corners/Westpark neighborhood, a place where everyone will have the opportunity to enjoy the special nature of Romanian foods and culture, bringing together both Eastern and Western European elements and resulting in a wonderful medley of experiences.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 16, Posted 6:37 PM, 08.02.2016