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Hear a Cool Clarinet at Severance Hall
Raise a juice box to the brave Robert Woolfrey. The Cleveland Orchestra musician will be marching into a room today filled with scores of squirmy three- to six-year-olds, for no better reason than to introduce them to the joys of The Cool Clarinet. "It's just a half an hour!" the Toronto native cheerfully says of the program he is debuting as part of the orchestra's PNC Musical Rainbow series. Woolfrey, who joined the Cleveland Orchestra in November 2008, says he's delighted to share his passion with the small fry. "What I'm really looking forward to is the kids who have never heard a woodwind live before." Also on Woolfrey's program: demos, short solo selections, and a chance for the kids to sing along to familiar tunes. It all goes down today at 10 a.m. in Severance Hall's intimate Reinberger Chamber Hall. Two encore performances are set for Saturday at 10 and 11 a.m. General admission is $7 by phone, online, or at the box office. Check out the website for details. — Cicora
11001 Euclid Ave., 216-231-1111, clevelandorchestra.com.
Maple Sugar Fest at Hale Farm
Like buzzards and tax forms, regional maple syrup fests are a sure sign of spring. This weekend, you can tip your toque to ol' Ma Nature at the Hale Farm & Village Maple Sugar Festival. Just show up between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. for pancakes, a stroll to the sugar camp, a chance to try your hand at making maple sugar candy, and an opportunity to peep at a whole bunch of craft demos — spinning, weaving, glassblowing, and blacksmithing among them. While you're there, say howdy to the new team of four-year-old oxen, an historic English breed that will be helping out the Hale farmers by pulling carts, hauling supplies, and plowing fields. The fun continues on March 18 and next weekend, March 24 and 25. Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for kids ages 3 to 12. Hale Farm is a living history museum operated by the Western Reserve Historical Society. — Cicora
2686 Oak Hill Rd., Bath, 330-666-3711, halefarm.org.
Work Up an Appetite in Kirtland
The annual homage to maple syrup continues on the East Side with this weekend's Spring Hike and Pancake Breakfast at Kirtland's Holden Arboretum. On the menu: buttermilk or multigrain flapjacks, local maple syrup, sausage links or veggie sausage, home-fried spuds, fresh fruit, OJ, milk, and coffee. Afterward, walk off the calories with a guided hike around a small part of the 3,600-acre grounds to uncover signs of spring. Seatings are today and tomorrow at 9, 9:45, 10:30, 11:15 a.m., and noon in the Warren H. Corning Visitor Center. Cost is $15 for adults, $10 for kids 4 to 10, and free for ages 3 and younger. Make reservations by phone (especially if you want the gluten-free option) or online. — Cicora
9500 Sperry Rd., Kirtland, 440-946-4400, holdenarb.org.
Trade Your Phone for Tickets to the Zoo
Bring in your old cell phone today for recycling, and get free admission to the Metroparks Zoo and RainForest. Or throw on at least one piece of visible green clothing and snag a $2 discount off regular admission. It's all part of the zoo's annual March 17 celebration, where "going green" refers less to St. Patrick and more to the mantra of "reduce, reuse, and recycle." Proceeds benefit the zoo's conservation and recycling efforts. Today's hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Regular admission is $8 for adults, $5 for kids 2 to 11, and free for children 2 and younger. Find out more on the website. — Cicora
3900 Wildlife Way, 216-661-6500, clemetzoo.com.
Fit for Foodies
A Taste of Spring in Milan
In a welcome change of pace from corned beef and green beer, Milan's Culinary Vegetable Institute is hosting an idyllic springtime celebration inside its handsome riverside lodge today. Dishing up the culinary magic is chef Jason Coperine, taking time off from his gig as chef de cuisine at Fort Lauderdale's Ritz-Carlton. Don't come here expecting soda bread and stout. Coperine's mouth-watering menu is a compendium of essential spring ingredients: morels, fava beans, mustard greens, pea tendrils, rabbit, spring lamb, and suckling pig among them. The dinner bell chimes at 6:30 p.m. Price is $75 per person, plus tax and a 20 percent gratuity. Make your reservations by phone. — Cicora
12304 State Rt. 13, Milan, 419-499-7500, culinaryvegitableinstitute.com.