Where to go before the Cavaliers game.

Pre-Partying 

Where to go before the Cavaliers game.

Gateway is hopping again before Cavs games, thanks - to you-know-who.
  • Gateway is hopping again before Cavs games, thanks to you-know-who.
TUE 1/6

LeBron James has done more than light up Gund Arena -- he's lit up the entire Gateway neighborhood. On game nights, the district's bars are now crammed with visitors looking for quick eats, cheap brews, and a good time. We've scoured them for the best options; try one out prior to Tuesday's game against the New York Knicks.

· No More Parking Blues: Parking is only $2 at Fat Fish Blue (21 Prospect Avenue; 216-875-6000) with a drink or food purchase. Plus, the live blues is worth heading back for after the game.

· Eating in Transition: Panini's (840 Huron Road; 216-522-1510) can serve a sandwich or a slice of pizza in less than 10 minutes -- a Gateway rarity. If you're running late, a dozen TVs are tuned to the game, so you won't miss a dunk.

· Open on the Wings: At the Winking Lizard (811 Huron Road; 216-589-0313), wings are a quarter each, and dinner specials -- like ribs and burgers -- are pretty cheap, too. A wide selection of brews helps wash them down.

· Get Your Irish Up: LeBron won't be a legal drinker for another two years, at which time Flannery's (323 Prospect Avenue; 216-781-7782) hopes to pour him his first Guinness. For the rest of us, the place offers a 3 to 8 p.m. happy hour with 20-ounce pints for $2. Don't forget -- there's a game to go to. -- Matt Leavitt

Mush Hour
Geauga County brings a Cuba Gooding Jr. classic to life.

1/3-1/4

Ever since Snow Dogs, the world can't get enough of sled-pulling canines (or of Sisqó as a thespian, for that matter). This weekend's Sled Dog Classic is your opportunity to see performing pups in person. The annual race gathers mushers from several states, competing in both open and Siberian husky classes (with two, three-, four-, and six-dog teams). There are also two- and three-dog sportsman classes, as well as a one-dog kid dash. Alas, your own pooch isn't welcome -- this is a spectator sport. The Sled Dog Classic takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Punderson State Park, 11755 Kinsman Road in Newbury. Admission is free; call 800-775-8687. -- Michael Gallucci

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