Thursday, December 19, 2013

Interactive Map: Six Months & $245 Million In Lottery Ticket Sales In Cuyahoga County

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 6:15 PM

The black icons with white circles are the top 10 lottery-ticket-selling stores in Cuyahoga County. View the embedded map for more information.
  • The black icons with white circles are the top 10 lottery-ticket-selling stores in Cuyahoga County. View the embedded map for more information.

Did you know there are more than 1300 places you can buy lottery tickets in Cuyahoga County? We didn't either, until we checked the data.

Scene submitted a records request to the Ohio Lottery Commission asking for data about where in the county people are buying tickets and how much each place is taking in for a six month period. We got back an Excel spreadsheet of statistics directly from their database listing the 1318 agents that sold $245.4 million in lottery tickets in a six-month span earlier this year (the beginning of February through the beginning of August).

We then took the data and imported it into Google Maps Engine Pro to visualize each of the 1318 sellers in Cuyahoga County, in separate layers based on how much they sold, and embedded everything here. If you click on any of the icons, the complete information for the specific spot will pop up. I set it so only the top 200 best selling stores will show up by default, so if you want to see the full list, check the box next to "Top 201-500" and "The rest." If you want to see fewer tiers, just uncheck what you don't want to see. Click the + or - on the bottom right of the map to zoom in and out. Click the box icon on the top right or here to view it in a separate page:

Continue reading »

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More Bullshit from the Cleveland Heights Police

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 5:48 PM

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The NEOMG reported this morning that the Cleveland Heights Police Department deliberately concealed the armed robbery of a high school student this week. Directly in the face of a reporter, Chief Brad Sudyk blacked out references to the crime with a black marker on the department's blotter.

The reporter later waited four hours to speak with police chief Jeffrey Robertson, but Robertson never emerged form his office. This isn't the first time Cleveland Heights Police has concealed crimes .

From the NEOMG story:

Cleveland Heights police have a history of concealing crimes from their taxpayers and others. A 2011 Plain Dealer investigation revealed Cleveland Heights police had labeled sex crimes as "departmental information" or "miscellaneous reports." The distinction allowed the city to report 26 sex crimes between 2008 and 2010. But the newspaper investigation revealed the city actually had 88 cases reported during that time.

They're also well rehearsed in the practice of ignoring and stonewalling media. Doug Brown outlines the elaborate lengths Robertson and Co. went to undermine the investigation of Christina Gaston's death, and later our reporting, in Scene's Cleveland Museum of Art story last month. Doug's section about the Cleveland Heights' Police stunning ineptitude, appears on page two.

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Where to Shop: Winter Farmers’ Markets

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 1:20 PM

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Many locavores, foodies and seasonal CSA members feel somewhat lost when those weekly farmers' markets and farm shares suddenly cease operation at the first gust of winter winds. But fear not, shoppers, as there still are numerous locally grown and crafted items that are available well into the season.

A wide variety of local meats, cheeses, pasta, eggs, baked goods, jams, syrup, honey and other hand-made items are available all winter long at area indoor markets. East, West, South or downtown, there is an option for everyone, so don’t miss the opportunity to continue to support local purveyors throughout the winter by visiting one of the following markets. Check market websites to see what's going to be available.

The Countryside Winter Farmers’ Market at Old Trail School (2315 Ira Rd., Akron, 330-657-2542, cvcountryside.org) runs select Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Check the website for the current schedule.

The Downtown Farmers’ Market at the 5th Street Arcades (530 Euclid Ave., 440-821-0254, 5thstreetarcades.com) runs 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. every Friday.

The North Union Farmer’s Market at Shaker Square (13111 Shaker Sq., 216-751-7656, northunionfarmersmarket.org) moves indoors for the winter and takes place every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. — noon. NUFM also has an indoor location that runs the same days and hours for Westsiders at Crocker Park (143 Crocker Blvd., Westlake).

Coit Road Farmers’ Market (15000 Woodworth Rd., E. Cleveland, 216-249-5455, coitmarket.org) is one of the city’s oldest, having been around for more than 80 years. It's open every Saturday from 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. during winter.

Cleveland Garbage Collectors Have Been Robbing a Local Store

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 1:05 PM

A crew of city garbage collectors is garnering some rotten attention after repeatedly robbing a local convenience store owner of snacks and soda during their regular rounds to pick up trash.

Apparently, the crew operates by sending in one guy to grab the grub— without paying— while the others wait in the truck. When their man returns with the goods, the other two will load up the shop owner's trash. If the owner puts up a stink, the collectors leave his trash to rot for another week.

Recently, the whole escapade was caught on camera, and the owner has taken the matter to city officials. The city says disiplinary action has already been taken, but punishment's still forthcoming.

Here's the surveillance footage and full report from 19 Action News' Ed Gallek.

19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

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Sandusky Student Grows Massive Cabbage, Wins Statewide Contest

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Whelan and cabbage
  • Whelan and cabbage
Spending our days pounding the pavement of dear Cleveland, it may sometimes elude the typical resident that Ohio is mostly farmland. That fact certainly doesn't elude the 24,020 students who participated in this year's cabbage-growing contest, sponsored by Bonnie Plants.

Elle Whelan, a student at Osborne Elementary in Sandusky, snagged top honors this year with a 38-pound cabbage. Her success garnered her a $1,000 saving bond towards education and, of course, statewide agricultural acclaim.

“The Bonnie Plants Cabbage Program is a wonderful way to engage children’s interest in agriculture, while teaching them not only the basics of gardening, but the importance of our food systems and growing our own," Stan Cope, president of Bonnie Plants, says.

More than 100 Cleveland-based students joined in on the cabbage fun, according to data supplied by Bonnie Plants. The participant spreadsheets most often touch on cities like Lima, Lancaster and Ashtabula, but there's no stopping a city-strapped student in Cleveland from letting their green thumb go wild and tend to the biggest cabbage this side of the Cuyahoga.

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Ohio City Singers play Scene session

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Yesterday, singer-guitarists Chris Allen and Doug McKean of the Ohio City Singers stopped by our office to play a couple of original Ohio City Singers’ Christmas tunes. They perform at 9 p.m. on Saturday at Roc Bar and then again at 5 p.m. on Sunday at Stone Mad.

Check out previous Scene Sessions with the Promise Hero, Zach, Stephanie Trivison, Diana Chittester, One Day's Notice, Taylor Lamborn, Unsaid Fate, Hey Monea!, Joshua Jesty, Hazard Adams, Dan Bankhurst, Joe Moorhead and Erica Blinn.

Metroparks Board OKs Zimmerman Salary Increase

Posted By on Thu, Dec 19, 2013 at 11:01 AM

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The Metroparks Board of Commissioners authorized CEO Brian Zimmerman's salary increase at their final meeting of 2013 this morning. Starting today, Zimmerman will collect $178,000 a year, up from the $165,000 he makes currently. That's an increase of roughly 7.5 percent.

Immediately prior to that action item, Metroparks chief HR officer Harold Harrison presented a plan for merit-based raises. In that format, the Metroparks' most exemplary employees (top 15 percent) would see a 4.25 percent pay increase. That's well below the annual increases that Zimmerman has received since he arrived in 2010 making $145,000.

Scene covered the Metroparks finances related to the November levy, the lakefront parks and CEO Brian Zimmerman in a cover story this week. Mark Naymik, at the NEOMG, also wrote a column calling Zimmerman's salary into question.

The central tension at this morning's meeting, though, had less to do with compensation and more to do with development near Metroparks land.

Developer Andrew Brickman was in attendance. He seemed displeased that the commissioners voted to table the discussion about his condo plan in Fairview Park which will abut Rocky River Reservation. Commissioner Bruce Rinker said he'd prefer to wait until further geo-technical analysis has been hashed out among Metroparks experts.

Rinker, an attorney familiar with the terminology and potential thorns of zoning and real estate, asked good questions and espoused patience and caution throughout.

According to a public comment, Brickman had been so angered the last time he appeared at a Metroparks meeting — evidently a vote didn't swing his way — he had to be escorted out by a uniformed security guard.

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