A monsoon could sweep over the Lake Erie Boating & Fishing Fest, and kids would still want to jump on board the Holiday and fish for perch and walleye. "They're all bundled up," says Reno "Jay" Reda, outdoor-skills specialist for the Ohio Division of Wildlife. "They're all wet. Their lips are turning blue. It doesn't matter how big the fish is. It doesn't matter what kind the fish is."
The festival includes ethnic-food booths, complimentary boat rides, and a stage filled with local bands. It all starts with a mock invasion by the Diamante Negro, a 77-foot schooner commandeered by the 17th-century pirate Juan Eduardo De Rivera (well, some guy dressed like him). Lake lore has it that the swashbuckler raided Cleveland's shores to steal rum from the city's distilleries.
Is the legend true? "It's funny, when [the story] was read to a group of boaters, people were saying, 'Oh yeah, he's buried on Put-in-Bay, and I've heard that story,'" says Shawn Fergus of the Lake Erie Marine Trades Association. "So people really believe it." The fest runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday at North Coast Harbor (at the foot of East Ninth Street). Admission is free; call 440-899-5013. -- Cris Glaser
Here come the marathoners!
After nearly three decades, Rocky River's Five Mile Race and Kids' Fun Run is still sprinting along. The event, presented by Cleveland West Road Runners, was created "because another race was needed on the West Side," explains founder Bill Reidy. The initial run included about 300 participants; it's since expanded to include little ones. "A lot of parents are just hell-bent on [the distance] being accurate," says the club's John Delzani. "About four or five years ago, we had a nasty storm that rained it out. By the seat of our pants, we made up for it. But parents were screaming, 'Is this accurate?' I told them, It's a Fun Run!" The races begin at 9 a.m. Sunday at Rocky River City Hall, 21012 Center Ridge Road in Rocky River. Registration (which starts at 7:30 a.m.) is $15, $2 for kids. Visit www.cwrrc.org for more information. -- Lucy McKernan
Volley Girls (and Boys)
It's all net at Edgewater's Spiketacular.
It may not be exactly the way they play it in Malibu, but this weekend's Spiketacular volleyball fest at Edgewater Park gives local folks a chance to engage in a little Cleveland-style spiking and diving. Co-ed teams will compete in sand (on Saturday) and grass (Sunday) for cash prizes. In addition to the competition, a beach party, complete with food and drinks, will accompany all the net action. "It's a great social sport," says organizer Allen Cooney. "Afterward, everybody [grabs] a beer and bullshits about what they did that day." It starts at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at Edgewater Park, 6500 Cleveland Memorial Shoreway. Admission is $30, which covers both days. Call 216-267-4340 for more info. -- Chris Miller
Ready for some old-school ball? Like, really old-school? Saturday's doubleheader at Stan Hywet (714 Portage Path in Akron) offers some Vintage Base Ball just like they played 150 years ago. "It's [about] entertainment and fun, [not] egos and money," says Akron Black Stockings' captain Mark Heppner. They take on the Canal Dover Red Legs at 1 p.m., followed by a Lady Locks-Fulton Jennys matchup. Tickets are $5; call 330-836-5533. -- Diane Sofranec