Thursday, May 30, 2013

Ed FitzGerald Endorses Armond Budish Amid Roster of Democrats

Posted By on Thu, May 30, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Armond Budish is staring into your soul.
  • Armond Budish is staring into your soul.
Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald plans to take his talents ambitions to Columbus, but he's hung around his current stomping grounds long enough to proffer a ringing endorsement for Democratic candidate Armond Budish.

It's not terribly surprising or interesting, but the news further cements Budish's position at the front of the county executive fray. Both his fundraising abilities and political clout have garnered him fairly positive musings from the region's political punditry.

Budish stepped down as House minority leader last week, paving the way for his more localized efforts.

The really diverse range of candidate speculation thus far includes former County Sheriff Bob Reid (confirmed), Cleveland Metropolitan school board member Eric Wobser (still considering a run), County Council President C. Ellen Connally (considering), State Sen. Shirley Smith (considering) and a host of other determined politicians Democrats.

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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Chardon Shooting Victims' Families Sue United Way; Fund Gets Frozen

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 3:47 PM

With their victimized stature already drawn out in perpetuity, the families of the Chardon High School shooting victims are now getting a firm backhand from a less likely entity: United Way.

Nearly $1 million has been raised to support the families' healing process via the Chardon Healing Fund, but they've only managed catch 15 percent of that. A lawsuit filed by the families names United Way of Greater Cleveland, United Way of Geauga County, Geauga County Board of Mental Health and Recovery Services and the Ohio Attorney General's Office. The May 21 complaint claims that United Way did not manage the account appropriately or in the spirit of its initial formation and intent.

“Upon information and belief, the Trust is not being used for the purpose for which it was created and/or represented to the public," Akron attorney Todd McKenney, representing the estate of victim Demetrius Hewlin, wrote.

Judge Timothy Grendell froze the United Way-administered Chardon Healing Fund until a June 7 evidentiary hearing in the pending lawsuit.

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Concert Review: Alkaline Trio at House of Blues

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 2:34 PM


When they were just boys with high-pitched voices and a ton more energy and fewer responsibilities, bands like Alkaline Trio and Bayside helped bring pop-punk into the new millennium. In the case of Alkaline Trio, who also just released their eighth studio album, it would seem that the question for them would be about how best to balance the new with the old and how best to represent the old. Or maybe the bands should play whatever the hell they want, however the hell they want because that was exactly how both bands came off last night at House of Blues. After opening with “Hell Yes,” it didn’t take Alkaline Trio long to transport fans to the late 90s with one of their earliest hits, “Clavicle.” Lead singer Matt Skiba crooned, “I wanted to wake up naked next to you/kissing the curve in your clavicle” about as sweetly as one man can to a sweaty, screaming mob, and it was apparent that the band was going to take fans back to the early days and treat them to a night of old favorites. Even still, the band was sure to show fans a little of what they’ve been coming up with lately, with some of the 17 songs in their regular set coming off of the new album; “I’m Only Here to Disappoint” and “The Temptation of St. Anthony” showed that the band hasn’t lost a step, even as this year marks the group’s 17th birthday. “Radio,” a slow, heartfelt ballad from Alkaline Trio’s second album, rounded out the three-song encore and completed the 75-minute set. As Skiba screamed about dogs shitting razor blades (literally) and “the big fat fucking bone” he had to pick with somebody from his past, it was apparent that the band knew exactly how to grow older with the audience, even if it meant sacrificing a little face in the name of putting on a memorable show.

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Tribe Pitcher Trevor Bauer's New Rap Song About The Tribe

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 2:23 PM


Trevor Bauer, he of the strong arm and dashing rap lyric abilities, penned another song. This time, it's about his teammates. "Gutter to the Grail."

Just give it a listen, please. He's so bad.

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Nelsonville Music Festival Begins on Thursday

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Nelsonville Music Festival
  • Nelsonville Music Festival
Hosting an impressive lineup of top-notch musicians in the foothills of Appalachia, the Nelsonville Music Festival promises a kick-ass weekend beginning tomorrow evening.

The schedule offers four robust days of music in the bucolic Southeast Ohio city. Guaranteed highlights include Cat Power's Friday night set and Wilco's Saturday night set.

Each year, it seems like Nelsonville's offerings get better and better. As far as the folk-rock/Americana crowd goes, this is a fantastic festival in a fairly convenient part of the country (for Ohioans, of course).

Tickets and camping passes are still available. Weekend passes clock in at $120, and day passes range from $50 to $75.

Also, the event was featured in Scene's 2013 Summer Music Festival Guide. Here's what we wrote:

Nelsonville Music Festival • May 30 - June 2


Headliners Wilco, Cat Power, John Prine

Tix $120 four-day pass

Where? Nelsonville is located off Route 33, just north of Athens.

Don't Miss! If you haven't (or have) seen Wilco live, then there's your answer. They stand tall as one of the greatest live acts in the country these days. And Mavis Staples is a legend. (I mean, why are you even considering not checking out her set?) There are a lot of cool, under-the-radar outfits rounding out the bill, as well. Wild Belle, for instance, is a slick little duo that will surely dish up a relaxing midday show.

Skip It Calexico can be taken or left, as you please. The band's got talent, but they seem to be shipping something a little less than that on each release. Check out Algiers to get a sense of where their sound is these days.

What To Bring It's all about the environment, so opt for aluminum or stainless steel containers for water instead of a case of plastic

Good Grub O'Betty's Red Hot from Athens is a hot dog LEGEND in Southeast Ohio, if you're into that kinda thang. (Of course you are.) (And, um, we recommend the "Varla." Tell 'em Scene sent you.) Jeni's Ice Cream from Columbus is widely known for offering some of the greatest ice cream ever.

Green Cred The umbrella phrase is "zero waste." In tandem with Rural Action and the Appalachia Ohio Zero Waste Initiative, fest organizers and attendees seek a full-scale recycling and composting op with an emphasis on self-awareness and responsibility.

The History The fest first cropped up in downtown Nelsonville in 2005. The setting is ideal: bucolic, collegiate and home to a top-notch opera house. Andrew Bird once called it "a hell of a lot better than Coachella," to which we Ohioans respond: Hell yes it is.

Watch Out For... Be sure to check out the No-Fi Cabin. "We take one of the cabins [at Robbins Crossing Historical Village] which is an old schoolhouse and have it as a stage all weekend where musicians play with no electricity - as acoustic as it gets," marketing director Brian Koscho says.

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Case Prof Has Written a Really Good Memoir About Heroin

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 10:37 AM


Case Western Reserve English Professor Michael Clune, this guy, has written a really, really good book about heroin, reviewers say.

It's so good and so exact, writes Gideon Lewis-Kraus in the New Yorker's book blog, that it makes you actually consider doing smack.

What most drug books don’t do is make the reader, upon closing the book, feel as though he or she really ought to think more seriously about experimenting with drugs. Any critic with a sense of social responsibility, then, has got to have some qualms about conceding that Michael W. Clune’s “White Out: The Secret Life of Heroin” is as good as it is.

The memoir follows Clune on his journey of addiction and recovery, written with only a sort of miasmic sense of plot. Amazon calls it "orginal," "edgy" and — whuddya know! — "literary" and that the book serves as a unique vistor's pass into the knifing mind of a heroin user.

Clune's evidently an interesting guy. His next memoir, according to his Case Western Reserve faculty page, is called Gamelife and centers on the idea of computer games as spiritual education. (His office hours are probably the sheeeit.)

White Out was published last month by the publishing arm of Hazelden, a network of addiction-treatment centers.

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South Euclid's Telling Mansion May Become a Museum

Posted By on Wed, May 29, 2013 at 9:18 AM

Controversy has been swirling in South Euclid, given the Cuyahoga County Public Library system's plan to sell Telling Mansion and invest $12.6 million in a new, state-of-the-art library over on Green Road.

If it seems like a simple transaction, it's not.

Telling Mansion, 4645 Mayfield Road, has served as a community library since 1952. Around that time, board members decided that the building was best suited to serve as a library "in perpetuity." Plans to sell the property have brought in Ancora Group chairman Richard Barone with an offer of $755,000 to host an American porcelain art museum in the building.

A meeting at the library last night authorized the beginning of the negotiation process with Barone.

But over the past few weeks, a group of dedicated area citizens has taken the library system's board to task for failing to adequately publicize the plans to sell the mansion. They sought a temporary restraining order against the library system two weeks ago, which Judge Tim McCormick shot down.

A petition has garnered more than 2,000 signatures thus far in support of maintaining the mansion's stature as a public library.

"This building belongs to the public," Fran Mentch says. She's leading the ad hoc group that is working as "torchbearers" of the original library board's intent for the building. "It is our building and it belongs to future generations."

Sari Feldman, executive director of the county library system, however, contends that the best use of public dollars is to invest them into a new building. Though renovation of Telling Mansion property's three buildings clocks in around $5 million (and the new library will cost about $12.6 million), Feldman explains that the mansion's demand for increased personnel makes its future a cost-prohibitive one.

"We will do whatever we can through sale to protect that building," Feldman says, though she notes that there's little in the way of legal restrictions that can be applied to any transaction.

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