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Friday, May 24, 2019

Look Out for Hot Air Balloons This Memorial Day Weekend in Chagrin Falls

Posted By on Fri, May 24, 2019 at 10:58 AM

  • Photo via Wikimedia Commons
A Memorial Day Weekend tradition, the Blossom Time Festival illuminates the city of Chagrin Falls with carnival rides and activities, along with the event everyone can't wait to arrive, the enchanting Balloon Glow.

Tonight at 7 p.m., watch as fire perks up nearly a dozen colorful balloons bringing a dazzling spectacle to the night sky above the Chagrin Falls High School grounds.

Then a Taste of Chagrin, featuring some two dozen vendors and food trucks, takes over the city's Triangle most of Saturday, and a parade marching down East Washington Street is scheduled for Sunday afternoon. There's also a rockin' Blossom Time Music Festival running throughout the entire weekend.

The free festival runs through Sunday night with special events each day. Be sure to check out the specialized Facebook events, including daily music lineups.

For a Balloon Glow preview, take a look at this video below:

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Friday, May 10, 2019

Perfect Ways To Celebrate Mother's Day in Cleveland That Aren't Brunch

Posted By on Fri, May 10, 2019 at 2:12 PM

  • Scene Archives
This Sunday is Mother's Day, and instead of scrambling for last minute floral arrangements or trying to squeeze your way into an overcrowded restaurant for brunch, Cleveland has plenty of other creative ways to celebrate the person who brought you into this world. Bottomless mimosas are pretty damn awesome, but this year, give your mama something new to get excited about.

Stay Curious at the Great Lakes Science Center
Your mom taught you how to read, tie your shoes, and wipe your own butt. Honor her by teaching her a thing or two with a visit to the Great Lakes Science Center. Guests of all ages can check out amazing science demos, hands-on activities and a Wonders of Water activity. The events take place on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. All moms receive half off the price of any general admission or combo admission ticket. The Great Lakes Science Center is located at 601 Erieside Ave.

Get Artful at the Cleveland Museum of Art
The Cleveland Museum of Art is hosting a day of curated programs to celebrate Mother’s Day. Mom snags free admission to the special exhibition 'Shinto: Discovery of the Divine in Japanese Art.' As usual, you and mom can also enjoy guided tours of the collection, a curated and dynamic view of works celebrating mom in ARTLENS Gallery, and art-making activities for the entire family. Provenance, the museum’s fine dining restaurant will also be hosting a brunch special (we can't escape brunch!) that require an advanced reservation. For more information, click here. The Cleveland Museum of Art is located at 11150 East Blvd.

Check out the Aquarium
The Greater Cleveland Aquarium is offering free admission for moms on Mother’s Day (Sunday, May 13, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., last entry at 4 p,m.) with the purchase of a child or adult general admission ticket. Children are invited to create salt dough sea stars in the first floor classroom and the first 150 visiting moms receive a complimentary button. Expect a scavenger hunt where moms have the opportunity to win an aquarium annual pass in addition to learning the aquarium's fascinating facts about animal parenting behavior. The Greater Cleveland Aquarium is located at 2000 Sycamore Street.

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Lawsuit From Former Cavs Executive Vice President Against Team Dismissed As Sides Come to Agreement

Posted By on Tue, Jul 31, 2018 at 1:05 PM

  • Wikipedia
Update: Lawyers representing former Cavs executive vice president Mozelle Jackson on Monday filed a notice of dismissal with prejudice in her lawsuit against the team.

Jackson had sued back in May, alleging retaliation by the Cavs after she said she discovered the team was destroying evidence that might have been pertinent to a discrimination claim by a disabled employee. She was fired after filing the lawsuit. (See further details in our original post below.)

Richard Haber from Haber Polk Kabat told Crain's Cleveland, "All I can tell you is the case was settled, the parties resolved their differences and the matter was dismissed." He declined to specify whether there was a financial settlement.


(Original story 5/11/2018): Mozelle Jackson had been with the Cleveland Cavaliers as an executive vice president since 2010 and as an executive vice present and Chief Financial Officer since 2011. That is up until this week, according to Forbes, which reported that she's been fired. (She's no longer listed on the team's executive leadership site.)

This follows a lawsuit Jackson filed Thursday alleging that the team retaliated against her after she informed the Cavs of a discrimination claim, witnessed electronic evidence being destroyed, and verbally related those concerns to Cavs' lawyers. (The complaint can be read in full below.)

It stems from an incident involving a Cavs "team member" that was brought to her attention in March of this year. Though the lawsuit is heavily redacted, it does say that HR and Cavs in-house counsel investigated the matter.

On March 15, there was a conference call on that investigation involving members of the organization, internal counsel and Howard Luckoff, outside counsel/general counsel for Dan Gilbert's Rock Ventures. After that call, according to the complaint, Jackson witnessed members of the organization deleting electronic evidence that she felt was pertinent to the investigation and the imminent firing of a "disabled team member."

According to the complaint, she informed in-house counsel on March 20th of her concerns, and memorialized them in a March 23rd letter to Cavs CEO Len Komorowski, specifically mentioning Ohio's prohibition of discrimination against qualified individuals and urging the team to retrieve the evidence.

A meeting was scheduled for April 10th with Jackson, Luckoff and Komorowski. At that meeting, according to the complaint, Luckoff told Jackson she was a highly valued team member but that she had "caused noise" in the system, that she would likely be fired, and that if she chose to fight the separation, Dan Gilbert was a billionaire who wouldn't think twice about spending money in court to fight her claim.

"Mr. Luckoff stated that they wished for the parting to be amicable, but if Ms. Jackson were to 'fight them on this' she should understand that 'Dan Gilbert is a billionaire and had the money to fight in Court for as long as it takes.'"

It goes on from there, including an alleged threat to ruin her professional reputation with what the complaint says are unfounded performance criticisms.

Update: The Cavs issued a statement over the weekend:

“Two local Cleveland plaintiff specialist lawyers, Richard C. Haber and Andrew A. Kabat, on behalf of former Cavaliers executive Mozelle Jackson, filed a law suit recently full of intentionally twisted, inaccurate and fabricated claims.

Our organization will not pay ransom-like sums to professional plaintiff lawyers demanding significant amounts of unjust compensation on behalf of their clients. It will be clear from any examination of the facts that this law suit is solely motivated with the goal of attaining substantial, unearned financial windfall for the two plaintiff solicitors Richard Haber, Andrew Kabat and their client. We eagerly look forward to bringing this matter to trial and are confident that the truth will prevail, demonstrating that these assertions, although professionally packaged and strategically timed in hopes to maximize pressure and affect, are baseless and false.”

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Thursday, May 31, 2018

Your 2018 Cleveland Pride Month Guide

Posted By on Thu, May 31, 2018 at 3:45 PM

  • Courtesy of Pride in the CLE | The Center

Pride month is just a day away, and the Cleveland community isn’t afraid to celebrate loud and proud. Between a new “pride shop” clothing line and Pride in the CLE's parade and festival this Saturday, plenty of rainbows are on the horizon. But for those looking for even more ways to celebrate the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer/Questioning community, whether that be with the whole family or with those 21+, here are some events to ensure celebration all month long in Northeast Ohio.

Stonewall Pride Run (June 1)
The region's first gender inclusive race to include a gender nonconforming category, in addition to male and female categories, this 5K run or one mile walk starts at the Lower Kite Field of Edgewater Park. The registration fee is $30, which includes a T-shirt or tank top and chip timing. All proceeds benefit the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland. Step-off is at 7:30 p.m.

Flat Out Pride (June 1)
Get pumped for a free night of fun at the official Pride in the CLE kickoff party. Food and drinks, a DJ, live performances, local drag queens and a celebrity appearance by Thorgy Thor from RuPaul's Drag Race Season eight and All Stars 3 will grace Flats East Bank from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Pride Blackout Party (June 1)
One of Cleveland's last remaining gay hot-spots, Twist Social Club is set to host LGBTQ artists as well as provide glow sticks for a night of dancing in the dark from 9 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. No cover charge, but the event is 21+.

Ride to Pride (June 2)
Dust off your bicycles and get hyped to ride about 15 miles roundtrip. Starting at 9:30 a.m., this scenic bike ride beginning at Gordon Park will go at an easy pace and end up at Public Square in time to enjoy Pride in the CLE's festivities. For more information, check out the Facebook event.

Kaos & Vibe Pride Party (June 2)
Vibe Bar + Patio hosts a pride cookout featuring burgers and dogs from 8 p.m.-10 p.m., along with a dance party from 10 p.m. until close. Also expect trivia and plenty of music videos. Admission is free for this 21+ event.

Revival: Pride Edition (June 2)
A dance party presented by Black Space Productions and Pride in the CLE commences at Lava Lounge from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. The cover charge is $5, DJ Candifresca is spinning and the event is 21+.

Gay Games 9 Reunion Brunch (June 3)
Whether you want to pay for the brunch buffet or not, this official closing event of 2018's Pride in the CLE takes place at Merwin's Wharf and goes from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It celebrates the international and cultural sporting event for the LGBT community that took place in Cleveland in 2014. As Gay Games 10 heads to Paris this year, this event serves to reminisce and pass the torch.

Special Screenings at the Capitol Theatre (June 5, 12, 19, 26)
As we've already covered here, the Capitol Theatre is partnering with the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland to present a themed screening series with a different film each Tuesday in June at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are less than $10 each and 20 percent of all concession sales will benefit The Center.

Pride in the CLE Workout (June 8)
Exercising in public can be intimidating, but maybe less so when alcoholic beverages are permitted. This social workout at CTOWN East Bank from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. is free for participants, but encourages donations to benefit the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland.

Out on the Roof with Pride in the CLE (June 10)
Tremont Athletic Club will soon be the site of a yoga and cocktail experience that benefits the LGBT Center of Greater Cleveland. Tickets are $25, and the event goes from noon to 2 p.m.

6th Seasonal Lip Sync Battle (June 10)
Enjoy some healthy competition among your favorite Stonewall Sports Cleveland lip sync divas, as well as some new ones from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Winchester Music Tavern. Performances will include fake blood, Adele's actual wig, a live birth onstage, an army of Britney Spearseses and more. Whatever all that means.

Let Pride Out (June 19)
Story time! Listen to real PRIDE stories in this safe space provided by Jammy Buggars. If you want to try your hand at telling one of your PRIDE stories, submit the summary to The cover charge is $5 and the show starts at 8 p.m. sharp.

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Mad Mac's Now Serving Up Hearty Mac and Cheese in Lakewood

Posted By on Thu, May 31, 2018 at 3:26 PM

  • Photos courtesy Mad Mac's/Facebook
Mad Mac's, a new macaroni and cheese joint brought to you by the people behind Yuzu, opened last Wednesday in the old O'Tooles Pub space at 13601 Detroit Ave. in Lakewood.

General manager Kelly Kazandjieff is confident the Cleveland area needs such an establishment: "There probably can’t be enough mac and cheese in this world," she tells Scene. 

Kazandjieff, who's been with Yuzu since it opened two years ago, was helping owner Dave Bumba with 2017's Mac & Cheese Throwdown event when the idea for the new spot was born.

"There are plenty of great restaurants around town serving up mac and cheese," Kazandjieff says. "But we wondered why there wasn't already a spot serving up mostly mac and cheese."

Ever since, Bumba has set to dreaming up mac and cheese dishes, such as spicy chorizo, hot dog heaven (popular with the kids so far) and also a cheeseburger mac. There are also mac and cheese options for vegans and gluten-free eaters, along with other appetizer, soup and salad selections. Garlic bread can be added to any item on the menu, and there are plenty of beers on tap to help wash down a meal. With all that, it was important to find the proper portion balance with these dishes.

"I keep asking people, 'How are you feeling? Are you trying to go to bed right now?'" Kazandjieff explains. "It’s a fine line. We’re loading you up on carbs, but we also want you to stick around and hang out. So far, we seem to be getting it right."

Kazandjieff says she and her crew got the keys to the Detroit Ave. location about 40 days ago, and worked hard to ready the space in time for the Mad Mac's opening. There's seating for 75, larger than the Yuzu spot, and plans are in the works for similar events like speed dating, beer pong tournaments, and trivia nights.

Mad Max is open 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 5 p.m. to midnight on weekends.
Mad Mac's Italian three-cheese pasta
  • Mad Mac's Italian three-cheese pasta

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The G.O.A.T. from Akron is in the NBA Finals for the 8th Year in a Row

Posted By on Thu, May 31, 2018 at 2:01 PM

  • Emanuel Wallace
Only four other people besides LeBron James have ever made it to eight consecutive NBA Finals series, and all of them were members of the Bill Russell-led Celtics dynasty of the late fifties and early sixties when most of the league’s players were white.

With LeBron’s Cavaliers set to tip off as overwhelming underdogs in a fourth straight Finals matchup against the Golden State Warriors tonight, the most amazing thing about it is that there’s hardly anything the Warriors could do in this series that would outshine the greatness of King James or diminish his status as the most dominant force in the NBA.

So if the Warriors end up steamrolling the Cavs like everyone in the world expects them to? Congrats, you got the second-best player in the league to take a multi-million-dollar pay cut to join a 73-win team with three more All-NBA talents that lost the title to the Cavs the year before.

Meanwhile, LeBron is here with Jeff Green and Kyle Korver, playing for his hometown team despite its inept owner and front office because that’s where his presence is the most meaningful, and refusing to accept less than a maximum salary because that’s what’s best for the players’ union.

It’s been wildly popular among media and fans alike to speculate that LeBron will play somewhere else next season due to the failures of the Cavs’ front office. But these failures have only made his greatness more apparent during this playoff run, underscoring how little he has left to prove on a basketball court in Cleveland or anywhere else. Here, it’s worth remembering how little his decision to return to the Cavs in 2014 had to do with basketball in the first place:

“I feel my calling here goes above basketball,” James said in announcing his return. “I have a responsibility to lead, in more ways than one, and I take that very seriously. My presence can make a difference in Miami, but I think it can mean more where I’m from.”

While it’s important for LeBron to maximize the value of his labor, and he effectively does so by leaving open the possibility of signing somewhere else, it’s no less true today about his presence meaning more where he’s from. Of course, there will always be a fundamental tension between LeBron’s goals of ensuring a proper balance of power between players and ownership, remaining loyal to his hometown, and fulfilling a calling that’s bigger than basketball in the process. That he would even try to achieve all of these ends at once, let alone enjoy such success in having done so, is simply unprecedented.

Of course, it’s not just about having talent, it’s about how one uses it. Which is why no matter what happens in this Finals series, the best story in sports will still be LeBron James, the G.O.A.T., in Northeast Ohio. The chance that he might do the impossible again by beating these Warriors, and that millions of Cavs fans will be electrified until the series is over to see if he does, is really just gravy.

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CMHA Will Accept Applications for Voucher Program Wait List June 4 - June 8

Posted By on Thu, May 31, 2018 at 1:59 PM

The Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) will accept applications for the Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCVP) wait list Monday, June 4, through Friday, June 8.

During this time, adults (18 and older) may submit a pre-application online at for a chance to obtain a place on the voucher wait list. After all the pre-applications are in, CMHA said a third-party vendor will conduct a random lottery to determine which applicants will earn a spot.

“We encourage people who are interested in securing housing through the Housing Choice Voucher program to apply during this application period,” said CMHA CEO Jeffery K. Patterson, in a statement.

The HCVP (formerly, and still sometimes disparagingly, referred to as "Section 8") provides rental assistance to help low-income people afford privately owned rental housing in Cuyahoga County. Participants in the HCVP program pay approximately 30 percent of their income to their landlord, and CMHA covers the balance.

The waiting list for vouchers is extremely competitive. In 2015, when 10,000 tenants were selected for the waiting list, roughly 55,000 had applied.

CMHA's HCVP Director LaTweeta Smyers said in March that of the 10,000 lottery winners from 2015, only 1,059 remain, largely because of low response rates. That's why she's hoping to replenish the list with this round of applications. 

There are 15,283 people who receive vouchers through CMHA currently, nowhere near enough to assist the thousands of families living at or below the poverty line. About 50-60 families, Smyers said in a presentation, are terminated from the program each month. As vouchers become available, new tenants form the wait list get them.

For more information and context, you can read Scene's feature story from February on barriers faced by participants in the Housing Choice Voucher Program.

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