Why? Recess on Detroit!

Last night, members of Playhouse Square Partners and friends took to the Gordon Square Arts District for Recess on Detroit. The “recess” theme started last year with Recess on 25th. The event is a scavenger hunt through local businesses that not only puts you in touch with some of the cool places in a neighborhood, but also raises money for the Playhouse Square Bus Fund.

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Our evening kicked off at Old City Libations, where we enjoyed signature cocktails made with Old City Soda, as well as the chicken paprikash pierogi (OMG, so good).

From there, it was next door to the Near West Theatre, which moved into it’s beautiful new space in 2015 (I know that because it was a question on our scavenger hunt). While we weren’t able to go inside, we did get a fun photo opp in front of the marquis.

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Next up was Superelectric Pinball Parlor. This bright, fun, retro establishment boasts tons of pinball games to enjoy, as well as cool artwork to take in while you play.

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Finally, we ended our hunt with a sweet treat at Sweet Moses Soda Fountain and Treat Shop. Matthew and I shared the Bob Feller Sundae. While I’m not usually one to share ice cream, this sundae was large and rich and definitely good to split.

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Salted caramel ice cream is drenched in hot fudge and topped with Spanish peanuts, caramel corn, whipped cream, and a cherry. It’s the baseball classic Cracker Jack in ice cream form!

The scavenger hunt also encouraged to pick one other Gordon Square business to patronize, so we popped into the fun and funky Land of Plenty: Vintage and Modern, where I picked up an adorable postcard (watch your mail) and an equally adorable purple beaded bracelet.

It was back to Old City Libations to hear the results and while our team didn’t win the scavenger hunt, I feel like we’re all winners for having a fun night in a cool neighborhood for a great cause!

If you’re interested in checking out a Playhouse Square Partners event, our always-popular Trivia Night is happening on Wednesday, May 24 at Kennedy’s Theatre at Playhouse Square. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.

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

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Why? St. Vincent de Paul Society Kentucky Derby Party Giveaway!

It’s almost time for big hats and mint juleps and the Run for the Roses! And you don’t have to travel to Churchill Downs to get in on all the excitement.

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The St. Vincent de Paul Society is hosting it’s 17th annual Kentucky Derby Party presented by the Community West Foundation to raise funds to support the St. Vincent de Paul Society’s multiple hunger centers, which nourish 13,000 men, women, children and seniors each month.

The Kentucky Derby Party will take place on Saturday, May 6 from 4-8pm at Great Lakes Brewing Co. The party will feature a live showing of the Kentucky Derby on the big screen, horse betting, a hat contest, silent auction items up for bid, raffles (you could win up to $1,000), prizes, authentic Derby fare, and mint juleps and Great Lakes Brewing beers.

 

Tickets for the Kentucky Derby Party are $75 and raffle tickets are $5 per ticket or 5 for $20. Both admission and raffle tickets are currently on sale online.

Or you can enter to win two tickets to the Kentucky Derby Party 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 and tell me what you would name a race horse.

2. Visit St. Vincent de Paul Society and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

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

4. Follow @svdpcle 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 attend @svdpcle #DerbyDayCLE thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/04/18/why-st-vincent-de-paul-society-kentucky-derby-party-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, April 23 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by St. Vincent de Paul Society to help promote the Kentucky Derby Party. In exchange, I will receive two tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Beasts ‘n Brews Chilifest!

There aren’t many things I enjoy more than a good outdoor food fest! So, when there’s one that combines a trifecta of chili, craft beer, and live music, you can bet I’m excited! The third annual Beasts ‘n Brews Chilifest returns to Legacy Village on Saturday, April 29 from 1-5pm.

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Local chefs and farms will bring their finest chili for festival goers to sample and vote for in the “Best of the Fest” competition. There will be grass-fed beef chili, as well as vegetarian and vegan options. Your $5 admission gets you a personal chili spoon for digging into all the tasty goodness.

After enjoying all that chili, you can quench the fire on your palate with a selection of local craft beers from a variety of breweries and cocktails from Watershed Distillery available for purchase. Then relax and listen to local bluegrass musicians to cap off a fun day!

All of this fun and food benefits North Union Farmers Market‘s mission of championing local foods, specifically targeting their education and accessibility programming.

For more information and to purchase tickets for Beasts ‘n Brews, click here.

***Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village to promote their events. In exchange, I will receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Silver Spoon Awards Party Giveaway!

Cleveland loves good food and loves a party! So, a party designed to celebrate all the great food in Cleveland is bound to be an amazing evening!

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Cleveland Magazine‘s 23rd annual Silver Spoon Awards Party  to benefit the Arthritis Foundation, Northeastern Ohio is happening Wednesday, May 3 at the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum at the Cleveland History Center.

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You can enjoy delicious small bites from Cleveland’s top restaurants, unlimited wine samples, silent auctions and raffles, and the chance to check out pieces of Cleveland history all in one place!

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There is also an exclusive VIP lounge with additional small bites, specialty cocktails from Brown-Forman, and a late-night after party.

Tickets are currently on sale for $100 for general admission and $150 for VIP admission. You can purchase tickets online and can save 10% by using promo code WHYCLE at checkout.

Or you can enter to win two general admission tickets to the Silver Spoon Awards Party 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 telling me which participating restaurant you’re most looking forward to sampling.

2. Visit Cleveland Magazine’s Silver Spoon Awards Party and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

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

4. Follow @SilverSpoonCLE 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 attend @SilverSpoonCLE thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/04/12/why-silver-spoon-awards-party-giveaway-4 #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 Monday, April 17 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote the Silver Spoon Awards Party. In exchange, I will receive 2 complimentary VIP tickets for myself and 2 complimentary general admission tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Yuri’s Night!

On Saturday night, Matthew and I had the chance to blast off to an out-of-this-world party at the Great Lakes Science Center.

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Yuri’s Night celebrates Yuri Gargarin, the first human to be launched into space. Space-themed costumes are encouraged and certainly made the people-watching at the party a treat! From Star Wars t-shirts to NASA jumpsuits to other-worldly critters, the attendees put their love for outer space and their creativity on display.

 

Plus, it’s always fun to explore a museum after hours, with an adult beverage in hand!

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Libations for Yuri’s Night were provided by Samuel Adams and Barefoot Wines. There were also bar bites to nibble throughout the museum, such as egg rolls, wontons, and mini pizzas.

We also participated in the evening’s scavenger hunt, which made the event even more fun! Not only was the friendly competition with other party goers exciting, but the scavenger hunt gave us an excuse to really explore the entire museum!

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There were also science demonstrations throughout the evening, proving that learning while drinking can be lots of fun!

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Plus, there was live music from Tricky Dick and the Cover-Ups and witty banter from host Mark Nolan that got the crowd of nearly 1,200 people dancing up a storm!

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Yuri’s Night was a really unique and fun experience that made science come to life in a totally new way. I loved being able to explore the Great Lakes Science Center after-hours and get to see the enthusiasm for space travel of my fellow attendees. After a year off, Yuri’s Night was back, bigger and better than ever!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Great Lakes Science Center to help promote Yuri’s Night. In exchange, I received 2 general admission tickets for myself and 2 general admission tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? The First Tee of Cleveland Open Houses!

If you’ve been thinking about getting your kids involved with The First Tee of Cleveland, next Saturday, April 8 is the perfect opportunity to check it out.

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The First Tee of Cleveland will be holding Open Houses at all four of their locations on Saturday, April 8 from 10am-12pm. Here are the locations:

• Washington Golf Course (main campus), 3841 Washington Park Blvd., Newburgh Heights 44105
• The Links Golf Course, 26111 Johns Road, Olmsted Township 44138
• Briardale Greens Golf Course, 24131 Briardale Avenue, Euclid 44123
• Windmill Golf Center, 1511 E. Aurora Road (State Route 82), Macedonia 44056

These Open Houses are free and open to all children ages 6 to 18 and their families. Light refreshments will be served.

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The Open Houses will give you the chance to learn about the First Tee programs, meet the coaches, ask questions, enroll for 2017, and participate in some fun golf activities.

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The First Tee offers programs year-round, such as:

• School Year, After School and Saturdays
• “Try It” sessions: see what you like first, then join.
• Patty Wood Girls Leadership Experience
• Food, Fun and the Nine Healthy Habits™ winter class
• Caddie Class, late winter
• Summer Programs: Weekdays and Saturdays
• Camps in partnership with Cleveland Metroparks
• Outreach Programs in Schools & Community Groups

The mission of the non-profit First Tee of Cleveland is to positively impact the lives of young people ages 6 to 18 across Northeast Ohio by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf.

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Last year, I had the opportunity to spend some time with the folks from The First Tee of Cleveland and see what they’re all about. You can read about it here.

So, if you want to learn more and get your kids involved in a positive, fun experience, make sure to check out one of these Open Houses, happening rain or shine (or snow) on Saturday, April 8!

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Why? Bloom Bakery!

You know what’s awesome? Getting to spend an evening eating food that not only tastes good, but does good, too. Last night, I celebrated with Bloom Bakery as they marked their first anniversary.

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Bloom Bakery makes delicious sandwiches, salads, pizza, and sweet and savory baked goods. But that’s not all! Bloom Bakery is a social venture of Towards Employment, which speaking of anniversaries, is celebrating it’s 40th anniversary in Cleveland.

Towards Employment assists those with barriers to employment to find and retain entry-level jobs and then transition into careers. Bloom Bakery’s tagline of “Creating jobs is our secret ingredient” shows the commitment to helping people find a meaningful and lasting pathway to employment.

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At last night’s event, Bloom’s general manager Logan Fehey highlighted the overall success of the first year, as well as introducing us to some employees who have excelled and advanced in responsibility at Bloom. Truly, Bloom Bakery provides not only delicious baked goods, but some of the nicest and most gracious customer service you’ll find!

So, let’s talk about the food! Last night, we enjoyed samples of Coronation Chicken, hummus, ham and brie (SO GOOD), sausage in croissant (I would eat this for breakfast every day), brownies, and pecan bars.

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We also were treated to music from students from the Cleveland Institute of Music and got to check out amazing artwork from Negative Space Gallery, many pieces of which are for sale at Bloom.

It was a lovely evening celebrating Bloom Bakery’s success and looking forward to many sweet years to come! As Jill Rizika, executive director of Towards Employment, pointed out, croissants that are eaten while doing social good don’t have any calories! So, the next time you need a sweet treat, a delicious lunch, or catering for your bunch, think about Bloom Bakery, with locations in Public Square and Campus District.

***Disclosure: I was invited to attend the Bloom Bakery First Anniversary celebration. I received one complimentary ticket to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Market at the Food Bank Giveaway!

You are cordially invited to enter a wonderland of food and drink, taking over the impressive Greater Cleveland Food Bank Distribution Center on Sunday, April 30.

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Market at the Food Bank is an annual benefit that raises money for the Harvest for Hunger campaign and last year brought in more than $260,000. When every dollar raised for Harvest for Hunger provides 4 meals, that’s a huge impact on our community!

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So, what is Market at the Food Bank? It’s a strolling food and beverage event that features small bites from amazing local restaurants including EDWINS, Bomba Tacos and Rum, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, The Plum Cafe & Kitchen, Crust Pizza, TownHall, Mitchell’s Ice Cream, and many more. You’ll also enjoy beverages from Private Reserve Fine Wines, Vino Veritas Winery, Starbucks, Buckeye Vodka, and more.

There is also a fabulous silent auction and live raffle with great prizes up for bid, all to raise even more money for Harvest for Hunger.

Tickets are currently on sale for Market at the Food Bank. General admission tickets are $102 and include unlimited food and beverage samples, a souvenir wine glass, and valet parking. VIP tickets are $202 and include all the general admission benefits, plus early admittance to the event and access to the VIP lounge. You can purchase tickets online.

Or you can enter to win two general admission tickets to Market at the Food Bank 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.Check out the list of participating restaurants and leave a comment here telling me which your most excited to try.

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 attend Market at the @CleFoodbank thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/03/30/why-market-at-the-food-bank-giveaway-2 #giveaway #HarvestforHunger

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

The giveaway will close on Tuesday, April 4 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Greater Cleveland Food Bank to help promote Market at the Food Bank. In exchange, I will receive 2 general admission tickets to give away. I declined my own 2 general admission tickets due to scheduling conflicts. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Yuri’s Night Giveaway!

“Circling the Earth in my orbital spaceship I marveled at the beauty of our planet. People of the world, let us safeguard and enhance this beauty — not destroy it!” – Yuri Gagarin

The Great Lakes Science Center is preparing for Yuri’s Night 2017, one of the hottest parties in Cleveland. Yuri’s Night celebrates Yuri Gagarin, who was the first human to complete an orbit of the Earth, as well as all the achievements in space flight since then.

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On Saturday, April 8, the Great Lakes Science Center will be filled with food, drink, music, and fun in celebration of Yuri’s Night. Tricky Dick and the Cover-Ups will keep the dance floor packed. There will also be a space-themed costume contest and a scavenger hunt, if you’re feeling like showing off your competitive side. Add to this an open bar, appetizers, a chance for conversation with Astronaut Greg Johnson, and amazing lakefront views, and you have all the makings of a cosmically fantastic night!

VIP tickets for Yuri’s Night are $100 and include early admission, access to the VIP lounge with it’s own bar and additional menu items from restaurants like Melt Bar & Grilled and Sushi 86, and complimentary parking. General admission tickets are $60 in advance and include open bar, appetizers and specialty bites, live entertainment and demonstrations, and access to the scavenger hunt. Tickets for Yuri’s Night are currently on sale 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):

1.Leave a comment here letting me know why you would like to attend Yuri’s Night.

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

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

4. Follow @GLScienceCtr 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 blast off to Yuri’s Night at @GLScienceCtr thanks to @WhyCLE: https://whycle.com/2017/03/09/why-yuris-night-giveaway #giveaway #staycuriouscle

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

The giveaway will close on Tuesday, March 14 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Great Lakes Science Center to help promote Yuri’s Night. In exchange, I will receive 2 complimentary general admission tickets for myself and 2 general admission tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Jump Back Ball!

The 26th annual Jump Back Ball at Playhouse Square transported guests back to the 1920’s with glitz, glam, flappers, and speakeasies.

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We started our evening in the VIP reception and seated dinner. The cocktail reception featured performers from Cleveland Burlesque, passed appetizers, drinks, and fun photo opps.

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We then moved into the lobby of the Allen Theatre for a delicious dinner provided by The Driftwood Group that featured roasted chicken, potatoes, and vegetables.

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I love having a seated dinner option at Jump Back Ball to have a chance to both relax with friends and fuel up for the dancing and fun to come.

After dinner, we all headed to the State Theatre (with a stop to take in the sounds of Wesley Bright and the Honeytones). The decor was created by members of Playhouse Square Partners and was nothing short of gorgeous!

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On the State Theatre stage, there was tons of dancing and singing along with Faction, who did a phenomenal job playing a mash-up of everything from the 80’s to today, rock to pop. Of course there were plenty of friends with whom to enjoy all the music and dancing and cocktails too!

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I’m so grateful for all the wonderful people that Partners has brought into my life! They make everything from Jump Back Ball to board meetings a good time.

The one hiccup to an otherwise flawless evening came when one of my dress straps decided to stop working, right in the middle of the Cupid Shuffle (and the State Theatre stage, for that matter). Thank goodness for the prepared and helpful Playhouse Square Red Coats, who helped me out with a safety pin, and for fellow JBB-ers who helped fix me back up!

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Seriously, though, JBB 26 was a wonderfully fun and well-executed evening, all to support the Playhouse Square Foundation. After 26 years, Jump Back Ball remains one of the premier fundraising galas in Cleveland! If having fun was illegal, we would have been caught by the fuzz for sure!

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I can’t wait to see what Jump Back Ball 27 will have in store!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Playhouse Square to help promote Jump Back Ball. In exchange, I received one complimentary ticket when I purchased a ticket of equal value. Also, I am the vice co-chair of Playhouse Square Partners. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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