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Monday, September 9, 2019

Update: Twelve Literary Arts Announces International Recipients of Barbara Smith Writer-in-Residence Program

Posted By on Mon, Sep 9, 2019 at 10:44 AM

  • Courtesy of Twelve Literary Arts
  • Barbara Smith
Update: Earlier today, Twelve Literary Arts announced that Canadian poet Adebe DeRango-Adem and Pittsburgh-based writer and educator Elizabeth de Souza have been named the first international Barbara Smith Writers-in-Residence. The two writers will spend three months completing major literary works in progress.

They will each be provided a $5,000 stipend, an apartment and several opportunities to share their works-in-progress with local audiences.

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Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Lakewood is Getting Its First Starbucks This Week

Posted By on Wed, Jul 31, 2019 at 1:11 PM

  • Photo via Flickr Creative Commons
Update: The city of Lakewood has announced that its brand new Starbucks, the first to open in the city, is set to welcome customers for the first time Friday.

The new coffee shop will employ about 20 people to help serve up its caffeinated concoctions.

(Original Story: 2/7/2019) Starbucks — known for its controversial cup designs, a former CEO considering a presidential run, and, to a lesser extent, its coffee — has announced plans to open its first Lakewood location.

The Seattle-based coffee behemoth plans to occupy 15027 Detroit Ave., a former Burger King that thankfully does include a drive-through window.

"Starbucks is always looking for great locations to better meet the needs of our customers," a Starbucks spokesperson told, confirming the location is opening this summer.

Unfortunately, that means Lakewood residents might have to travel upwards of several blocks (to Cleveland, which already has 17 Starbucks locations, including one at Clifton and W. 117th) to obtain a seasonal Cherry Mocha for Valentine's Day.

In the meantime, there are plenty of local spots to keep you caffeinated in the Cleveland area, as this list proves. 

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Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Version 2.0 of Ohio City Pizzeria, a New Partnership with West Side Catholic Center and Brandon Chrostowski, Opens July 19

Posted By on Wed, Jul 3, 2019 at 10:14 AM

  • Google Maps

Update: Version 2.0 of Ohio City Pizzeria will open its doors for lunch and dinner service, along with a full bar, on July 19.

If you missed the story earlier this year touting the old Ohio City favorite's second life with a new mission, the short version: The new restaurant is reopening as a combined nonprofit effort by the EDWINS team and the West Side Catholic Center. While Christopher Terry, the executive chef at EDWINS, is leading the culinary side, the West Side Catholic Center will be benefiting with the restaurant hiring clients and serving its community.

No menu has been posted yet, but for more information on the mission or to donate, click here or here.


(Original story 2/19/19): Ohio City Pizzeria is coming back, and it's doing so with a new menu and mission.

Come spring, it'll reopen as a nonprofit with a revamped menu and full bar service in partnership with Brandon Chrostowski of EDWINS and the West Side Catholic Center, which owns the building at 3223 Lorain Ave. where it'll operate.

Chrostowski will lead the charge on expanding and fine-tuning the pizzeria's offerings, including calzones, pasta, sandwiches, vegetables and soups. He'll also lead hiring, training and interior design.

Meanwhile, the West Side Catholic Center will benefit with Ohio City Pizzeria assisting in serving its community and hiring clients, which is right in line with EDWINS' philosophy.

“We recognized that we had a unique opportunity to reopen a popular eatery that will feed the local community, while supporting economic growth initiatives. In addition, Ohio City Pizzeria will help the West Side Catholic Center serve people in need of food, clothing, shelter, advocacy and a path to self-sufficiency,” said John Litten, executive director of the center, in a statement. “We plan to serve up an exceptional and fun experience, with an enhanced environment, engaging service and a robust but balanced menu. At the same time, Ohio City Pizzeria will train and employ clients of the WSCC and will support the mission through future profits.”

"It will contribute to and sustain the community in an even more important way, by supporting the mission of the West Side Catholic Center, which benefits the entire northeast Ohio community, regardless of residence, race or religion,” added Chrostowski.

Expect full lunch and dinner service, and delivery, once Ohio City Pizzeria opens in a few months.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Update: Sad Planets, a New Indie Rock Band Featuring Pat Carney of the Black Keys, Releases a New Music Video

Posted By on Wed, Apr 17, 2019 at 10:43 AM

  • Laura DeMarco
Update: Earlier today, Sad Planets, the indie rock band featuring John Petkovic (Cobra Verde, Sweet Apple, Guided by Voices, Death of Samantha) and Patrick Carney (Black Keys) released a video for "Just Landed," a song from Sad Planets' debut album, Akron, Ohio.

The video focuses on a spaceman (Petkovic) who lands in Los Angeles and proceeds to wander the streets of L.A. and meet a space girl (played by Chelsea Debo, a Los Angeles actor who’s appeared in a films and videos, including Lana Del Rey's "Love").

A friend of Petkovic’s, Dinosaur Jr. guitarist J Mascis dropped in when the band was recording in Akron to play lead guitar on the tune.

"J grabbed my guitar and just started playing along, so we hit record," says Petkovic, who also plays with Mascis in the band Sweet Apple, in a press release about the music video. "It sums up the entire process... we would come up with chords and songs on the spot."

Original Post 2/19/2019: A few years ago, Cobra Verde/Death of Samantha/Sweet Apple singer John Petkovic began working with Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney on a project they dubbed Sad Planets.

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Friday, March 22, 2019

Update: Members of Cleveland’s All Saved Freak Band to Appear at Tonight’s Tribute to Glenn Schwartz

Posted By on Fri, Mar 22, 2019 at 11:56 AM

Update: Seven former members of the All Saved Freak Band gathered at Lava Room Recording in Beachwood this morning to film videos that will accompany the reissues due out later this year in honor of the now-defunct rock/folk/blues/psychedelic band’s 50th anniversary.

While some of the musicians still live in Cleveland, others came in from Arizona, Tennessee and Georgia for the occasion.

“In the videos, we talk about each of the albums and what it was like in the beginning to play contemporary Christian music,” says band leader Joe Markko, who adds a short video will accompany each of the four forthcoming reissues. “This band existed five years before the term contemporary Christian music was coined, so we talk about that, and we talk about being on the road and our studio experiences.”

The ASFB members will also be in attendance at the tonight’s concert at the Beachland to celebrate the music of the late singer-guitarist Glenn Schwartz, a member of the group.

Markko’s band, Home Before Midnight, will perform as well.

Markko first met Schwartz decades ago at the now-shuttered Faragher’s Back Room on Taylor Rd. in Cleveland Heights.

“I brought my guitar with me, and we played a few times," says Markko when asked about how he recruited Schwartz to join the All Saved Freak Band. "The next time I went back, I had written a song for him. It was called 'Ode to Glenn Schwartz.' It’s now called ‘Promises, Promises,’ which the Schwartz Brothers played in their sets.”

Glenn Schwartz also cut the tune with Black Keys' guitarist Dan Auerbach at a session that took place in Nashville three years ago.

Gene Schwartz with Danny McFadden and the Elm Street Band will headline tonight's concert. The show begins at 8 p.m., and tickets cost $10.

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Thursday, February 28, 2019

In Advance of Their Upcoming Masonic Auditorium Show, Cypress Hill’s Sen Dog and Hollywood Undead’s George 'Johnny 3 Tears' Ragan Talk About That Infamous West Coast High

Posted By on Thu, Feb 28, 2019 at 3:41 PM

  • Eitan Miskevich
  • Cypress Hill
Two weed-obsessed acts from Southern California, Cypress Hill and Hollywood Undead have teamed up for the first time ever for what they've called the West Coast High tour, a co-headlining run that comes to the Masonic Auditorium on Saturday, March 9.

Last year, Cypress Hill released its ninth studio album, Elephants on Acid, and Hollywood Undead issued PSALMS at the end of last year.

Elephants on Acid is Cypress Hill’s first album in nearly a decade, and it’s the first record DJ Muggs produced since 2004's Til Death Do Us Part.

In separate phone interviews, Cypress Hill’s Sen Dog and Hollywood Undead’s George "Johnny 3 Tears" Ragan speak about the connections between the two acts and talk about who'll have the better weed with them on this tour.

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8 Cleveland Mardi Gras Events To Indulge In Through Tuesday

Posted By on Thu, Feb 28, 2019 at 3:11 PM

  • Photo by Emanuel Wallace
Mardi Gras, aka Fat Tuesday, is the last chance to go all-out judgement free before Lenten/Fish Fry season begins in Cleveland. Whether you plan on chasing the holiday with a period of repentance or not, there are plenty of themed events to check out through Tuesday in the area.

1. Warehouse District Mardi Gras Bar Crawl
Saturday at 2 p.m., the Warehouse District hosts what it's calling Cleveland's "official Mardi Gras Bar Crawl." Patrons will receive custom beads at every bar, a special Hurricane cup they can use for drink specials and a Mardi Gras mask. Tickets cost $20 in advance, or $30 at the door; register through the website. (Jeff Niesel)

2. Flats East Bank Mardi Gras Bar Crawl
Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. is hosting its fourth annual bar crawl at noon on Saturday. Tickets holders can visit up to six of the 14 participating venues, and access additional drink specials throughout the crawl, giveaways (including beads) and live music. A portion of the ticket proceeds go to H.E.L.P., a nonprofit dedicated to aiding children in rural Africa. Reserve tickets here.

3. Fat Tuesday at Western Reserve Distillers
The Lakewood distillery is hosting a celebration on Fat Tuesday, March 5, starting at 3 p.m. The event includes specially priced New Orleans-style cocktails, complimentary King Cake and paczkis. Find out more here.

4. BayArts
BayArts celebrates Mardi Gras Saturday at 7 p.m., with a special party that features New Orleans-inspired food and libations, music by the Zydeco Kings, a Second-Line parade, and masks — all in the new Hearth Room of the BayArts' Playhouse. Your $55 tickets help benefit the Playhouse renovation. Purchase them on the website. Find more information here. (Niesel)

5. Cleveland's 2019 Brazilian Carnaval
Tropical Cleveland's annual Brazilian Carnaval is reportedly one of the largest and most authentic carnaval celebrations in the Great Lakes area. The group aims to "bring together Brazilians and people from all over the world as one to experience this electrifying yearly event." It all goes down at 9:30 on Saturday at the Music Box Supper Club. Tickets start at $15. (Niesel) There is also a "late-nite Mardi Drag" show on Saturday and a Mardi Gras Brunch on Sunday. More on all events can be found on their website.

6. House of Blues
Celebrate on Tuesday at the House of Blues' annual party. Expect food and drink specials all day, with a live performance by the Blues Chronicles at 9 p.m. For reservations, go here.

7. Fasching
Join Hofbräuhaus Cleveland in celebrating Fasching, the German equivalent of the carnival holiday. On Sunday, they host Fasching Kinderfest, a family event. Children are encouraged to dress in costume and trick-or-treat around the restaurant, in German tradition. Then Tuesday, there are Fat Tuesday festivities that include beads and masks as well as Fasnachts, German donuts filled with "jelly... and maybe a surprise." Find out more on their website.

8. Carnaval at Paladar
This Woodmere restaurant is kicking off their celebration today, which goes until Tuesday. Live music is held on both the opening and closing nights of the festival. There are also food and drink specials, including a Caipirinha Flight Trio and Feijoada tasting. The full list can be found on their website.

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