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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Bad Tom Smith Brewing to Open Monday, Dec. 4, in Ohio City

Posted By on Wed, Nov 22, 2017 at 9:46 AM

Update: After a series of setbacks and delays, including a string of break-ins, Bad Tom Smith is ready to open its doors in Ohio City.

That will happen on Dec. 4, a week from this coming Monday.

The taproom, located in the former Weenie a Go Go space, will feature a range of options including a monthly, rotating homebrewer selection.


(Original story 12/22/16): There’s been chatter on the street that Bad Tom Smith Brewing Co., a small Cincinnati-based brewery, was looking to plant a flag in Ohio City. The plan, as laid out by the Cincinnati Business Courier this summer, was for owner John Vojtush to ultimately open taprooms in Louisville, Dayton, Pittsburgh, Eastern Kentucky and Northeast Ohio.

Now we know when – and where – that Northeast Ohio taproom will open.

Local operator Stephen Fellows said that the process of converting Weenie a Go Go (1836 W. 25th St.), a former hot dog diner, into a small brewery and taproom has already begun. The goal is to be open and pouring by St. Patrick’s Day.

When it opens, Bad Tom Smith will be brewing beer on site on a four-vessel, three-barrel system as well as shipping in beer from its Cincinnati brewery. Bad Tom’s Cincy-based master brewer will work with a crew of local brewers.

The space will accommodate approximately 100 guests, says Fellows.

When it opens, the taproom will join local breweries Great Lakes, Market Garden Brewery, Nano Brew and Hansa Brewery in the immediate vicinity.

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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Update: Alternative Press Music Awards Ceremony Moves to the State Theatre

Posted By on Wed, Jul 12, 2017 at 6:54 PM

[image-1]Update: Earlier today, Alternative Press announced that "logistical issues" have forced it to the move its annual music awards scheduled to take place on Monday at the Q to the State Theatre.

"The move to KeyBank State Theatre will allow 2017's main event to shine in an authentic award show atmosphere," reads the press release announcing the change in venue.

All previous purchases for the show will be honored at the State Theatre, and "every effort will be made to give ticket buyers an equivalent or greater ticket location."

Continue reading »

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Friday, May 19, 2017

Former Cleveland Catholic Charities Employee Who Embezzled More Than $2 Million Sentenced to Five Years in Prison

Posted By on Fri, May 19, 2017 at 8:07 AM


Update: Michelle Medrick, the former business manager for Cleveland Catholic Charities who admitted to embezzling more than $2 million from the non-profit over the course of six years, was sentenced yesterday by a federal judge to more than five years in prison.

The 58-year-old North Royalton woman engaged in a scheme where she wrote more than 1,400 checks from the organization's account to cash, which she then cashed.

“This defendant stole millions of dollars from the vulnerable men, women and children who are supported by the good works of Catholic Charities,” said acting U.S. Attorney David A. Sierleja. “The Diocese uncovered the fraud, came forward to federal authorities and cooperated fully.”


(Update 1/13/17): Michelle Medrick, who worked for Cleveland Catholic Charities for 28 years, admitted to embezzling $2 million from the organization since 2008.

The scheme, as it was basically laid out: When she received payments for Catholic Charities invoices, she deposited them in the account of Parmadale instead of Catholic Charities. She then wrote checks for cash to herself from that account.

The total number of checks: 1,449.

The non-profit was reimbursed the stolen funds via insurance but Judge Christopher Boyko is likely to ask her to give a portion of the money back to the organization as well. Medrick is facing between 33 and 63 months in prison under the plea, according to She'll be sentenced April 27.


(Original story 12/28/16): A former Cleveland Catholic Charities employee who worked at various times as the non-profit's comptroller and business manager was charged today with embezzling $2 million from the organization.

58-year-old Michelle Medrick of North Royalton allegedly used her position to steal millions between 2008 and March of this year.

In a statement last month when the allegations (but not the employee's name) came to light, CEO Patrick Gareau said in a statement, "We are shocked and disappointed that this occurred. Stewardship is one of the core values of our organization and we take the trust granted to us by our supporters, clients and community very seriously. We are working closely with our audit committee and board of directors and have taken steps to strengthen and improve our internal controls and oversight of systems within the organization."

An independent forensic audit was conducted by an outside firm and the FBI investigated. Medrick allegedly altered checks and used donor checks for personal income, among other nefarious acts of embezzlement.

Catholic Charities has insurance for this sort of thing and has already recouped the missing sum.

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Friday, April 7, 2017

Update: 'American Ninja Warrior' Qualifying Rounds Hit Cleveland in May

Posted By on Fri, Apr 7, 2017 at 12:41 PM

Cleveland ninja Logan Broadbent  returns for this year's competition. - COURTESY NBC
  • Courtesy NBC
  • Cleveland ninja Logan Broadbent returns for this year's competition.

UPDATE: The dates for American Ninja Warrior's taping in Cleveland have been announced for May 8-9. That's right, next month, the show where contestants attempt to complete an insane obstacle course in order to win a boatload of cash, will take over Cleveland's Public Square for two days of filming.

The ninth season of American Ninja Warrior premiers on NBC Monday, June 12. But the Cleveland episodes won't air until later.

The network also plans to include various activities for fans throughout the taping in Cleveland. Audience seats are free, but tickets are required. Go here for more wait list information.

Watch for more details to follow. Read our earlier post below.


Ninja Warrior is coming to Cleveland in the spring.

NBC and Esquire Network have announced the six host cities for the qualifying round next year's installment of the reality series. Along with Cleveland, locations include: Los Angeles, San Antonio, Daytona, Florida, Kansas City, Missouri and Denver . Las Vegas will host the finals June 18 - 24. Cleveland's qualifying round will be held May 8 - 9.

In case you're not too familiar with the series, it's essentially a giant obstacle course. The take-home for the last person standing is $1 million.

The network has yet to announced the location and registration information, but we'll update you once we know.

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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Lionel Richie and Mariah Carey Cleveland Tour Date Postponed

Posted By on Thu, Mar 2, 2017 at 2:39 PM

[image-1]The April 5th date for Lionel Richie and Mariah Carey with Cleveland has been postponed, along with all the other stops on the 35-date tour.

Richie is recovering from knee surgery right now.

"When you have been performing as long as I have it takes a toll on your body. Unfortunately my recovery from a knee procedure will not have me 100% ready to start the tour next month," Richie said in a statement. "I don't want to disappoint my fans and I look forward to being back on stage so we can all be 'Dancing on the Ceiling' together again."

If you have a ticket for the April 5th show you can receive a refund or just hold onto it and use it for whenever the show actually comes to town.

The tour, which was slated to begin March 15, will now kick off in summer.


(Original story 12/12/16): Over the years, pop singers Lionel Richie and Mariah Carey have established themselves as mega-stars. Multi-platinum-selling artists, they’ve both won multiple Grammy Awards.

Today, they announced they’ll tour together for the first time ever on the All the Hits Tour. The 35-date tour kicks off in Baltimore on March 15; it comes to Quicken Loans Arena on April 5.

An AT&T priority presale ticket access begins at 10 a.m. tomorrow, and Citi cardmembers can begin purchasing tickets at 10 a.m. on Thursday. Tickets go on sale to the general public at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

FirstEnergy Will Sell or Close Both Ohio Nuclear Power Plants

Posted By on Wed, Feb 22, 2017 at 4:42 PM

[image-1]UPDATE 2/22: The Plain Dealer reports that FirstEnergy does indeed plan to sell or close both the Perry and Davis-Besse nuclear power plants.

The Akron-based energy giant intends to offload all of its power plants by the middle of next year.

Original Story: 12/29/2016
USA Today reports that the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station might soon be shuttered or sold by FirstEnergy Corp.

FirstEnergy CEO Chuck Jones said in an industry conference that due to cheap energy sources like natural gas, and the state of Ohio's unwillingness to set energy prices above market rate, operating some power plants is no longer profitable. Davis-Besse is one of several plant in Ohio and Pennsylvania potentially on the chopping block.

If Davis-Besse were to be closed, not sold, the 624 employees who work there (making an average of $86,000 per year) would be out of job. Thousands of contractors and other workers who work at the site every year would also lose a major client.

Even more "devastating," though, would be the loss in tax revenue to Ottawa County, located in between Sandusky and Toledo. Davis-Besse generated more than $10 million in property and utility tax income in 2015, according to the report.

Davis-Besse, which was Ohio's first nuclear power plant, and has the generating capacity to power 1 million homes, also has a frightening history of structural deficiencies. It underwent a $600 million infrastructural overhaul in 2014.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Cleveland Native Andy Puzder Has Withdrawn His Nomination for Labor Secretary

Posted By on Wed, Feb 15, 2017 at 4:13 PM

Andy Puzder has withdrawn his nomination for the labor secretary job, amid a flurry of criticism leveled against his stances on, well, labor (and immigration and domestic abuse and wages and all that). At least 12 Republican senators had publicly denounced his nomination.

Originally published Feb. 6

Here's The Atlantic today, reminding us all Andy Puzder, CEO of an outfit that runs something called "Carl's Jr.," is languishing among the otherwise frenzied and trippy Cabinet appointment hearings in Washington. Puzder was tapped two months ago for the Labor Secretary gig. (See original story below.)

"The fast-food executive, who runs the parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardees," Russell Berman writes, "has submitted none of the paperwork required by the Senate committee overseeing his confirmation. As a result, the panel’s Republican chairman, Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, has delayed Puzder’s confirmation hearing four times, and now his testimony has been put off indefinitely."

In a circus, it's hard to single out the most impressive clown. Puzder would do well to follow Betsy DeVos' lead and simply start dribbling nonsense into the nearest microphone.

That said, the Senate has yet to block a nomination set forth by President Donald Trump. It may take a while, but Americans should probably start bracing for subliminal Thickburger® advertising being slipped into their tax returns.

Originally published Dec. 9, 2016

Andy Puzder, the CEO of Carl's Jr and Hardee's fast food restaurants, has been picked by President-elect Donald Trump to head up the Department of Labor. It's a telling choice, because the Cleveland native has been fairly outspoken on the subject of jobs in America lately.

His statements from a March 2016 interview have been coursing through the news cycle this week, and with good reason: Puzder (if approved by the Senate) could very well transform the employment landscape of the U.S. If times seem tough for the service economy worker right now, then the future looks like a nightmare zone for anyone who's not a machine.

We're talking about automation, which is an inevitable technological advance in all arenas of modern, developed nations. On the subject of automated machines replacing employees at the thousands of locations he oversees, Puzder salivates thusly: “They’re always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there’s never a slip-and-fall, or an age, sex or race discrimination case."

There is no doubt on his long record in business: Puzder does not support the American worker.

It's unclear if he'd prefer a fembot in place of Kim Kardashian in his commercials, though we doubt it. "I like beautiful women eating burgers in bikinis. I think it's very American," he told Entrepreneur magazine.

(Our sister paper in St. Louis went back to a 1989 cover story, which sussed out accusations of abuse by his first wife — accusations which were walked back in a Nov. 30, 2016, letter, right around the time Trump and his transition team were kicking the tires on Puzder's cred.)

One does hope, however, that as our American economy vaults toward the void of an automated service industry, we take the time as a society to chart a course that benefits both consumers and the workforce. Puzder may hold the reins to that conversation and others.

“The point is simple: The feds can mandate a higher wage, but some jobs don’t produce enough economic value to bear the increase,” Puzder has said.

There's already state-sponsored backlash to the notion of hiking minimum wages. The Department of Labor would surely follow suit under Puzder. It'll be a show worth watching next season.


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