Why? Cleveland Zoological Society Ambassadors Circle!

Last night, Team Porcupine Rainstorm stormed our way through the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo hunting for clues (and brews) at the Cleveland Zoological Society Zoo Clues and Brews scavenger hunt.

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We fueled up for the scavenger hunt with small bites from the Zoo, as well as beers from Great Lakes Brewing Co., as we studied Zoo maps and planned our route to victory.

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Throughout the hunt, we learned more about the Zoo, its mission, and its residents; walked (or ran – go, Scott, go) a lot; and took a ton of silly photos.

The scavenger hunt is put on by the Ambassadors Circle Young Professional Group, which combines the benefits of Cleveland Zoological Society membership with opportunities for volunteering, networking, and leadership.

Membership in Ambassadors Circle is $120, which includes a full-access Zoo membership, as well as invites to events such as the signature scavenger hunt and FUNdraisers like a World Giraffe Day event at Platform Beer Co. and charity brunch at Lago.

Ambassadors Circle helps connect young professionals to the Zoo and shows them that it’s not just a great place for kids to play and learn, but also for adults to enjoy. The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo has an important role in the fabric of Cleveland, setting standards in animal care and welfare, acting as a hub of research for graduate students from Case, Otterbein and other local colleges, providing educational support for over 100,000 local schoolchildren, and working with partners around the globe to help secure a future for endangered species.

If you’re a young professional looking for a way to connect to not only other YPs, but also to some curious critters, check out the Cleveland Zoological Society Ambassadors Circle! Click here to learn more and join!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Ambassadors Circle. In exchange, I received complimentary registration for two for the Zoo Clues and Brews event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Shaker Lakes Hike, Run & Explore Giveaway!

Just because summer is winding down doesn’t mean that you can’t still get out and enjoy the outdoors. Which is why the Shaker Lakes Hike, Run & Explore is the perfect event to transition to fall.

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Taking place on Sunday, September 17 at the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes, Hike, Run & Explore allows your whole family to do just that. There are guided nature hikes, with everything from a 12-mile round trip hike to Gordon Park along Lake Erie to a 1-mile family and pet-friendly hike along the Nature Center trails. The hikes are $20 for adults and $10 for children ages 4-12.

There are also a 5K and 10K races. You can take advantage of $20 early bird registration until September 4.

Once you get your workout in, stay for the beer garden, food trucks, archery, tree climbing, music, and crafts in the Shaker Parklands. There’s truly something for all ages and interests to enjoy!

The Nature Center at Shaker Lakes serves 13,000 children each year through school based programs, which include the Applied Science for Kids (ASK!) program with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, and other districts such as Cleveland Heights-University Heights, Shaker Heights and various Head Start programs. The annual Shaker Lakes Hike, Run & Explore benefits those environmental education programs.

You can register online for any of the nature hikes or races. Or you can enter to win a complimentary registration for any of the events right here. Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment here for each):

1.Leave a comment here letting me know which event of the Run, Hike & Explore in which you’re most interested in participating.

2. Visit Nature Center at Shaker Lakes and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @shakerlakes and @whycle on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Follow @ShakerLakes and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to Run, Hike & Explore @ShakerLakes thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/08/29/why-shaker-lakes-hike-run-explore-giveaway #giveaway

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment here each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Sunday, September 3 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes to help promote Run, Hike & Explore. In exchange, I will receive one complimentary registration for myself and one registration to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? 2017 Cleveland Heart Walk!

The Cleveland American Heart Association has planned an incredible morning of fitness, fun, and fundraising for the 2017 Cleveland Heart Walk.

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On Saturday, September 23 on Mall C in downtown Cleveland, you can find a lot of ways to be fit and help your heart and the hearts of others. The day starts with sunrise yoga at 7am, followed by a spin ride at 8am, along with the Healthy for Good Festival that includes kids activities, CPR training, blood pressure screening, clean eats from Townhall and Rebol, and lots more. Then the 1 and 3 mile walks kick off at 10am.

I’m particularly excited about the Pop-Up Ride from Cycle Bar. Spinning is such a great workout that I haven’t done in ages (think: before my wedding) and it’ll be great to get to participate outside the studio. As important as a fitness routine is, sometimes changing up the activity, the location, or both can make a huge difference in your motivation!

The Heart Walk is part of the AHA Healthy for Good campaign. According to the AHA, “When it comes to the Heart Walk, LIFE is why we walk. Better heart and brain health are our mission, because we want you to experience more of the moments in life that matter most.” Everyone has a reason to live a longer, healthier life. So, what is your why?

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For me, my family is why. I want to be around for all Jeffrey’s big moments and be able to fully participate in them. And I want to be an empty nester who travels the world with Matthew. It’s important for me to model a healthy and active lifestyle for Jeffrey and to keep up with Matthew, who definitely maintains that kind of lifestyle too.

We all have a “why” and that why is the perfect reason to register for the Cleveland Heart Walk. Whether it’s yoga, spin, the walk, or some combination, you’ll find ways to make yourself healthy and perhaps spice up your fitness routine, as well as help those struggling with heart disease and stroke.

You can register as an individual or a team and set your own personal fundraising goal. Click here to learn more and register. I hope to see you and learn more about your own personal “why.”

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote the AHA Cleveland Heart Walk. In exchange, I will receive event registration and promotional items. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Taste of the Browns Giveaway!

Fall is almost here, which means football season and one of the coolest food events in town: Taste of the Browns to benefit the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, happening Monday, September 18.

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This event combines the talents of so many fabulous Cleveland restaurants and beverage purveyors, all to raise money to help the 1 in 6 people in our community who are food insecure to bridge the meal gap. Every dollar raised equals 4 meals for those in need.

Your ticket includes wine and beer tastings, as well as delicious nibbles from over 25 restaurants, like Momocho and El Carnicero, Parker’s Downtown, Fahrenheit, AMP 150, and many more.

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Plus, you’ll get to mingle with Cleveland Browns Joe Thomas and alumni Josh Cribbs, pose for photo opps, bid on amazing silent auction items, and enjoy the Club Lounge at FirstEnergy Stadium.

 

Tickets for Taste of the Browns are currently on sale for $177 for general admission and $252 for VIP admission. You can purchase tickets online.

Or you can enter to win two general admission tickets right here! Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment here for each entry):

1.Leave a comment here telling me your favorite Browns player, current or alumni.

2. Visit Greater Cleveland Food Bank and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @clefoodbank and @whycle on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Follow @CleFoodBank and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to win tickets to @CleFoodBank #TasteoftheBrowns thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/08/24/why-taste-of-the-browns-giveaway-6 #giveaway

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment here each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Wednesday, August 30 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote Taste of the Browns. In exchange, I will receive two complimentary general admission tickets for myself and two general admission tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Chefs Unbridled Giveaway!

Last year, I missed one of my favorite food and wine events and I honestly am already excited to get back to it this year. Chefs Unbridled, to benefit Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center, is one of the most fabulous food events in a city that knows it’s way around a foodie party.

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Held at the Chagrin Valley Hunt Club Polo Field on Saturday, September 16, you will enjoy delicious tastings from some of Cleveland’s finest chefs, cocktails, live music, horse-drawn carriage rides, and a wine pull and auction.

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This year’s chefs represent a diverse line-up of styles who are sure to delight your tastebuds:

New for 2017, you can also enjoy the artistry of Natasha Nagawiecki sponsored by Wahl Professional as she creates special scene on a horse during a live clipping demonstration.

Also new this year: A limited number of “Golden Tickets” are available to purchase for $100 each for a chance to win a five-course meal prepared exclusively by Chefs Kuhn and Hodgson.

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The winning Golden Ticket includes wine, service and cleanup for 20 guests right in the winner’s home. To purchase your Golden Ticket (by September 14), contact Maureen Foster at mfoster@fieldstonefarmtrc.com or 440-708-0013 x123. Golden Tickets will not be sold at the event.

Chefs Unbridled is the primary fundraiser for Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center, which serves people of all ages who face challenges such as PTSD, ADHD, injuries, and neurological disorders. Fieldstone Farm students work with the horses to overcome barriers and achieve goals. This is one of the largest centers of its kind in the country, serving more than 1,000 students each year.

Tickets for Chefs Unbridled are on sale now and are $140 per attendee. Or you can enter to win two tickets to this incredible event right here!

Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment for each):

1.Leave a comment here letting me know which chef’s food you’re most excited to try at Chefs Unbridled.

2. Visit Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @fieldstonefarmtrc and @whycle on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

3. Follow @fieldstonef and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to attend #ChefsUnbridled to benefit @fieldstonef thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/08/22/why-chefs-unbridled-giveaway-3  #giveaway

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Sunday, August 27 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote Chefs Unbridled. In exchange, I will receive two complimentary tickets for myself and two tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

It was a weekend that combined busy with relaxed, going out with staying in. Here’s the round up:

Cedar Point

On Friday morning, Mom and I took Jeffrey to Cedar Point, as we’re squeezing in as many trips up there as we can before summer ends!

On this trip, we picked up Jeffrey’s Pre-K Pass, which is an awesome deal that gives kids ages 3 to 5 complimentary admission to both Cedar Point and Cedar Point Shores through the end of the 2018 season!

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I definitely thought this was too good to be true when I first heard about it, but it’s legit and it’s awesome! Click here to find out more and register your child for their own Pre-K Pass.

Date Night at the Zoovies

Friday night, Matthew and I met up with friends Melissa and Tim for one of our favorite summer evenings at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo: Date Night at the Zoovies.

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Date Night at the Zoovies is a fundraiser for the Cleveland Zoological Society that gives you the chance to explore part of the Zoo; enjoy beer, wine, appetizers, and movie theater snacks; and watch a movie in the outdoor amphitheater.

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This was the sixth annual Zoovies event and every year it grows in popularity. This year’s event sold out in an impressive 27 minutes! The appetizers this year were themed on the movie being shown, “Spaceballs.” We nibbled on Space Meatball Subs, Lone Star pulled pork, and Pizza the Hut mini pizzas.

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During the movie, we munched candy, popcorn, Chex Mix, and hot dogs while basking in the cheesy 80’s glory of “Spaceballs.” Zoovies is such a fun, relaxed evening! Definitely keep your eyes open for when tickets go on sale for next year’s event…you don’t want to miss it!

Run for Recovery

Saturday morning, I was back at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, this time for the Run for Recovery to benefit Recovery Resources.

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Though the run started off damp, the sun peeked out by the end of the 5K! Aside from the run, there was a board sharing who you were running to support, as well as the opportunity to paint rocks for a memorial rock for someone in recovery or who has lost their life to addiction. The rocks will be placed in a memorial garden.

Run for Recovery is not only good exercise, but it’s a meaningful way to support Recovery Resources and acknowledge both those who have lost their lives to addiction, as well as those in the recovery process.

Saturday and Sunday Home Cooking

I told you this weekend balanced going out with staying in, which meant that we had two nights at home to enjoy yummy home-cooked meals.

On Saturday, we had friends over for tacos, Coronas, and plenty of sitting and chatting in the backyard. We made garlic tequila lime flank steak (recipe here) with all the taco trimmings including homemade guacamole, as well as Mexican chocolate cake (recipe here) for dessert.

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It was a fun and tasty night!

On Sunday, we made grilled pork chops with grilled peaches (recipe here) which tapped into the seasonal goodness of peaches as well as the summery-ness of grilling.

I also made roasted potatoes with hatch chiles (recipe here) using hatch chiles that I got from Heinen’s this weekend (stay tuned for more on that on Wednesday.)

So that was our weekend! How was yours?

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Date Night at the Zoovies. In exchange, I received two complimentary tickets to the event. I was asked by Recovery Resources to help promote the Run for Recovery. In exchange, I received one complimentary race registration. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Partners Passport to Paris!

You might have noticed that I post a lot about the events put on by Playhouse Square Partners. I’ve been a member of Partners for five years now and this year I have the honor of being one of the co-chairs of the organization.

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Beyond Jump Back Ball, which is our biggest fundraiser (and all-around fabulous party), Partners plans social, networking, and volunteer events that connect you not only with the theaters and plays, but also the community as a whole.

Our fundraising benefits the Playhouse Square Foundation, which supports Disney Musicals in Schools, the Dazzle Awards, and so much more.

But I’ll stop there because I would love for you to come to Partners Passport to Paris, an event where you can find out more about Partners and our committees, meet some of our members, be the first to find out the Jump Back Ball theme for 2018, and enjoy Parisian-themed small bites and Great Lakes Brewing Co. beer samples and Clos du Bois wine tastings.

Partners Passport to Paris takes place on Thursday, September 7 from 5:30-7pm at the Gund Dance Studio at Playhouse Square. The event is free and a great chance to find out what Partners is all about. Each attendee will receive 8 drink tickets good for samples of wine and beer and there will be a cash bar available as well.

To find out more and RSVP (while it is free, a headcount is helpful for food and drink,) click here. I hope to see you there!

***Disclosure: I am the co-chair of Playhouse Square Partners. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Woofstock Giveaway!

You know I love our fuzzes, who are both adopted pups and truly the most loving, quirky, sweet family members!

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I’m a big believer in “adopt, don’t shop,” which is why I’m so excited to help promote Woofstock, a fundraiser for the Geauga Humane Society Rescue Village.

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Woofstock is a full day of family- and dog-friendly activities on Sunday, September 10, this year at the Cleveland Metroparks Polo Field. The day kicks off with a pooch parade around the polo field, with prizes for Best Group, Best Individual, and Most Creative.

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There will also be live music throughout the day, Rescue Row filled with adoptable dogs, vendors with treats and fun for humans and fuzzes, and lots more!

Registration is $25 per adult (which includes a Woofstock t-shirt) and free for children 14 and under. Once you register, you’re encouraged to continue your fundraising efforts for the Geauga Humane Society Rescue Village. Click here to register or donate.

Or you can enter to win a complimentary Woofstock registration right here! Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment for each):

1.Leave a comment here telling me why you want to attend Woofstock.

2. Visit the Geauga Humane Society and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @rescuevillage and @whycle on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Follow @rescuevillage and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to groove, play, and fund raise for @rescuevillage at #Woofstock thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/08/11/why-woofstock-giveaway #giveaway

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment here each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Wednesday, August 16 and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Geauga Humane Society Rescue Village to help promote Woofstock. In exchange, I will receive one complimentary Woofstock registration for me and one Woofstock registration to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

Aside from Twilight at the Zoo, there was lots of other great summer fun to be had this past weekend!

Yoga + Beer at Platform Beer Co.

On Saturday morning, I headed to Platform Beer Co. for one of my favorite combinations: yoga and beer!

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The patio at Platform was the perfect spot for an hour-long vinyasa flow led by my dear friend Alicia.

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Alicia has recently returned to teaching yoga and I had forgotten how much I enjoy her blend of challenging poses, great cues and guidance, fabulous music choices, and humor.

The class was a fundraiser for the Arthritis Foundation and included an hour-long yoga class and one Platform beer. I chose the Dancin’ in the Streets saison as my beer and couldn’t pass up one of the breakfast sandwiches, made with a Cleveland Bagel Co. bagel, egg, cheese, and bacon.

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If you’re interested in another chance to practice and drink with Alicia (and me) and benefit the Arthritis Foundation, check out Sunset Yoga on the Superior Viaduct on Monday, August 14. Your $25 ticket includes a 60-minute all-levels yoga class, one beer or glass of wine and complimentary small bites on the Luca Italian Cuisine veranda and extended happy hour specials until 9:00 p.m.

AIA Cleveland Beach Day

From there, I met up with Matthew and Jeffrey at Edgewater Beach for the AIA Cleveland Beach Day.

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For the past three years, Matthew and his AECOM colleagues have competed against other architecture firms in the sandcastle competition.

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This year, the AECOM team did a play on the Cleveland Metroparks Centennial, combined with Star Wars, naturally. There was the “Centennial Falcon,” as well as tree that proclaimed, “May the forest be with you.”

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They even had a colleague dress up like Jabba the Hutt!

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There is a fan favorite contest, voted on by beach-goers at Edgewater, and a contest judged by AIA members. For the third year, AECOM won the judges’ choice as best sandcastle. It takes a lot of work and creativity to make these sandcastles and I’m so proud of Matthew and his team!

Plus, Jeffrey and I never mind an excuse to spend the day at the beach (and get some Honey Hut ice cream at the Edgewater Beach House too.)

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Aladdin’s Eatery

Saturday evening, we met up with friends for dinner at Aladdin’s Eatery. With a menu that can keep adults and kids happy, Aladdin’s is a favorite! I ordered the hummus shawarma plate, with tons of Aladdin’s delicious hummus, seasoned beef, tomatoes, and pine nuts.

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Don’t forget some of Aladdin’s amazing hot sauce, too! What a great meal!

Cleveland Indians Game

On Sunday, we took Jeffrey to the Cleveland Indians game, which was his first of this season. It’s always so fun to take Jeffrey back to a place he hasn’t been in awhile to see how his interests and reactions change.

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He was much more interested in watching the game this time, as well as running the Tribe Tracker on the Family Deck, which allows you to virtually race against your favorite player.

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We all had a great time, despite the Tribe’s loss. Jeffrey loved the ball and bat giveaway, too and practiced his stance next to the new Lou Boudreau statue that was just unveiled this past weekend.

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So, that was our weekend! Lots of great summer time fun, packed into a couple days! How was yours?

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Why? Twilight at the Zoo!

Friday night, Matthew and I attended one of our favorite events of the summer: Twilight at the Zoo.

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This event combines live music and the chance to party after-hours at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo with philanthropic fun to benefit the Cleveland Zoological Society.

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From tasty VIP eats from House of Blues, Texas de Brazil, The Cleveland Cupcake Co., and more…

…to late-night eats like nachos, hot dogs, and hot pretzels

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…there’s always plenty of food to keep you fueled up for a night of rocking out to bands such as Billy Likes Soda

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Skin and Bones, Faction

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and SchoolGirl Crush.

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Add in libations from Samuel Adams and Barefoot Wines…

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…plus the chance to see all the amazing critters that call the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo home…

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…and you have the makings of a unique, fun, perfect summer night!

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Don’t miss next year’s Twilight at the Zoo for a rockin’ and roarin’ good time!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Twilight at the Zoo. In exchange, I received two complimentary VIP tickets. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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