Why? Si Jolie: French Fashion in Cleveland!

A new exhibit is opening this Tuesday, July 16 at the Cleveland History Center of the Western Reserve Historical Society.

Si Jolie: French Fashion in Cleveland celebrates the influence of French designers on Clevelanders, both from their visits to Paris and from local stores and boutiques carrying French fashion.

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The exhibit begins in the 1880’s, with Clevelander Helen Cowles, who often traveled to Paris. Her Louis Vuitton trunk stands open to be packed with all the garments necessary for a fashionable trip.

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The exhibit travels through time from flapper styles in the 1920’s that women would wear to Playhouse Square which was coming into its first heyday…

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…to changing silhouettes in the 1950’s…

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…to modern-day haute couture.

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From Dior to Hermès to lesser-known designers…

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…and from boutiques such as Quinn-Maahs to Higbee’s…

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…Si Jolie explores the relationship between Clevelanders and the most romantic city on earth, as told through their clothing.

Si Jolie: French Fashion in Cleveland opens to the public on Tuesday, July 16 and makes the Cleveland History Center an even more “ooh la la” destination.

***Disclosure: I received a media preview tour of Si Jolie: French Fashion in Cleveland. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Cleveland Tall Ships Festival!

This weekend, you have a chance to step back in time and explore Cleveland’s maritime history at the Cleveland Tall Ships Festival. This is the first time the Tall Ships have been in Cleveland since 2013.

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I had the unique opportunity to be aboard the Denis Sullivan during the Parade of Sail, which kicked off the Tall Ships Festival yesterday.

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The Denis Sullivan is a replica of a Great Lakes schooner and operates as a floating classroom and goodwill ambassador for the state of Wisconsin.

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The Parade of Sail featured boats from Canada, the United States, and New Zealand, some of which were crewed by children as young as 13! It was quite an impressive display!

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After the Parade of Sail, I attended the Captain’s Reception and Opening Ceremony, with music from Opus 216, food, and drink.

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What an amazing way to kick off the Tall Ships Festival!

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Through Sunday, July 14, you can explore the festival and fleet for yourself. There will be public boarding of the ships, exhibits, live music, rock climbing, performances from the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Asian Lantern Festival, and much more fun for the whole family.

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Tickets are available at Marc’s Stores and online. General admission is $13.95 and a family four-pack is $49.95. Come aboard the Tall Ships for an amazing way to experience Cleveland history!

***Disclosure: I was invited by the Downtown Cleveland Alliance to attend the Parade of Sail and Captain’s Reception. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? DANCECleveland BalletX Giveaway!

DANCECleveland is going all out for the 2019 National Dance Day on Saturday, July 27, with an ADF in CLE Summer Dance Festival that includes free community dance classes, a Take a Hike Tour, and Community Dance Day around the Playhouse Square district. Classes are for all ages and abilities and free, although registration is encouraged.

DANCECleveland’s celebration of National Dance Day will conclude with the dance company that is the darling of the Vail International Dance Festival and their own hometown of Philadelphia: BalletX.

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BalletX will make their Cleveland debut in an evening of works by some of the most exciting choreographers creating work today. Founded in 2005, the company has been applauded for their athleticism, emotion, and grace while challenging the boundaries of classical ballet. Having toured to prestigious venues around the world, it is so exciting to welcome them to Cleveland.

The performance will take place at 7:30pm on Saturday, July 27 in the Ohio Theatre. There is a pre-performance chat in the theatre that begins 45 minutes before the show.

BalletX Tickets range from $20-$45 and can be purchased online. Or you can enter to win two tickets to BalletX 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 your favorite style of dance.

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

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

4. Follow @DANCECleveland 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 celebrate National Dance Day with @DANCECleveland thanks to @WhyCLE #giveaway https://whycle.com/2019/07/05/why-dancecleveland-balletx-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, July 10 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by DANCECleveland to help promote the BalletX performance. 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? Tri-C Jazz Fest!

Last night, the 40th anniversary year of Tri-C Jazz Fest kicked off at Playhouse Square in swinging, soulful style.

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Tower of Power opened the festival with a funky, raucous performance that brought the audience to their feet several times.

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With a fantastic horn section and an easy-on-the-eyes lead singer who also is insanely talented, this concert certainly set the stage for a weekend of “le jazz hot.”

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After the concert, we popped over to the VIP after party, with sips and nibbles and more live music.

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That’s the theme of the weekend for Jazz Fest: anywhere you go in the Playhouse Square District, you’ll hear live music. From free outdoor performances on Friday and Saturday to ticketed concerts in the theaters to kids activities to cooking demos to local food and craft vendors, you can spend two full days enjoying a fully immersive cultural experience.

For me, Tri-C Jazz Fest is one of those annual events that really illustrates the breadth and depth of Cleveland’s cultural might. The festival commands performances from jazz legends and brings all walks of life together to celebrate what is called “the original American art form.”

For a swinging good time, head to Tri-C Jazz Fest this weekend!

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote Tri-C Jazz Fest. In exchange, I received two complimentary tickets to the concert of my choice, as well as access to the VIP After Party. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Moon Cleveland!

You’ve probably read Douglas Trattner‘s writing over the years, from Cleveland Scene Magazine to co-authoring four of Michael Symon’s cookbooks to Eater to Food Network Magazine.

This prolific local author has just written a new Cleveland guidebook: “Moon Cleveland.” The guidebook is easily broken down into sections that will help both locals and visitors find their perfect Cleveland experiences.

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Start with the “5 Top Experiences,” for the must-do, top-level Cleveland things, like food, sports, and beer.

Visiting (or entertaining visitors) for a weekend? The “Three-Day Best of Cleveland” will have you hopping all over town hitting some impressive highlights that will certainly leave your guests wanting to come back again and again.

Just moved to Cleveland or to a new location in your hometown? The Neighborhood Guide can help you find the best spots in your new locale.

From Sights to Restaurants, Nightlife to Recreation, “Moon Cleveland” covers it all, with digestible, but still informative descriptions, prices, hours, websites, and maps.

Love Cleveland, but want a quick trip away? The “Day Trips” section shares Trattner’s favorites from Amish Country to the Lake Erie Islands.

I like to say that Cleveland has so much to see, do, eat, and explore that it can be impossible to keep up with it all. But Douglas Trattner certainly does an impressive job in “Moon Cleveland.” The book can help you ease into learning about Cleveland or give even a seasoned local some great suggestions of new places to try.

“Moon Cleveland” is on sale now at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Google Play, Kobo, and Ebooks.com. Click here to order your copy and start (re)-exploring Cleveland!

***Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of “Moon Cleveland” from the author. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

 

Why? Dancing Wheels!

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend a rehearsal as the Dancing Wheels company prepares for “Reverse*Reboot*Reveal” on Friday, June 14 at the Allen Theatre at Playhouse Square.

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Dancing Wheels is the nation’s first and foremost physically integrated dance company that pairs disabled dancers with non-disabled dancers.

“Reverse*Reboot*Reveal” will feature four world premiere pieces by internationally-acclaimed disabled choreographers. I got a glimpse at these pieces at the rehearsal and was amazed by the beauty, grace, and haunting emotion of the company’s performances.

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Dancing Wheels also provides in-studio classes, K-12 in-classroom education, and a summer Youth Arts Camp, so the organization is truly in the community creating greater understanding and acceptance of those with disabilities and fostering integrated partnerships with the non-disabled.

Dancing Wheels’s founder, Mary Verdi-Fletcher, is world-renowned as a wheelchair dancer and has a passion not only for the art form, but for the organization she founded in 1980.

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Attending “Reverse*Reboot*Reveal” will not only provide an evening of entertainment, but will support the Dancing Wheels mission and programming.

Tickets are $40 for general admission, which includes the performance and after party. VIP tickets are $125 and include a Gala Celebration with pre-performance hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, silent auction, prime seating for the concert, and meet & greet dessert and champagne after party.

Join Dancing Wheels for an inspirational night of dance on Friday, June 14!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Dancing Wheels to help promote Reverse*Reboot*Reveal. In exchange, I will receive compensation for this post. I declined two tickets to the show due to scheduling conflicts. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Engage Cleveland Young Professionals Week!

Cleveland is a great town for young professionals, with lots of organizations and activities to take advantage of. Engage Cleveland is a community organization that brings together young professionals and leaders, all of whom are passionate about making Cleveland a lasting home for the next generation.

Engage Cleveland is hosting it’s 6th annual Cleveland Young Professionals Week from June 22-29.

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The week will feature morning, afternoon, and evening events ranging from fitness to networking/mentorship to socializing. You’ll have the chance to get inside looks at Cleveland businesses, meet community leaders, and connect with other young professionals.

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Photo Credit: Kamron Khan Photography

Highlights of the week include Rooftop Yoga at Tremont Athletic Club, Fat Head’s Tasting and Tour, Community Service at the Cleveland Kids’ Book Bank, Beat Box at GrooveRyde, Speed Networking, Lunch with Leaders, Campbell’s Sweets Factory Tour, an address on the State of the YP Community, and much more.

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Photo Credit: Maria Sharp Photography 

You can see the complete list of events and register for as many as suit your schedule and interests here. Engage Cleveland Young Professionals Week is a wonderful chance to experience the Cleveland community in volunteering, fitness, professionalism, and friendship.

***Disclosure: I was asked by Engage Cleveland to help promote Cleveland Young Professionals Week. In exchange, I will receive complimentary admission to two events of my choice. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

Why? Art in the Village!

Legacy Village is the perfect spot for an outdoor market, which is why you should plan to check out the 29th annual Art in the Village with Craft Marketplace this coming Saturday, June 1 and Sunday, June 2 at Legacy Village!

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Admission is free to check out this strolling event with over 100 artisans, including several from Northeast Ohio. There will also be a full craft market featuring live plants, organic soaps, and delicious edibles. Art in the Village is put on by Howard Alan Events and is part of the HAE’s Summer of Art Cleveland Series.

Two of the local artists at Art in the Village will be sharing their discoveries of artistic epiphanies: Kerry Cumpstone of Bainbridge sharing “The Circle of Life” and Trish Zimbalatti of Fairlawn sharing “Photo Sculpture.”

Art in the Village is open Saturday, June 1 from 10am-8pm and Sunday, June 2 from 10am-6pm. Don’t miss this great event at Legacy Village!

***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? Weekends!

It was a long holiday weekend and the unofficial start of summer, so of course there was lots of fun to be had…

Goldfish Swim School

Crazy early on Friday morning, Jeffrey and I headed to Goldfish Swim School – Cleveland East Side as part of a segment on WKYC on swimming safety.

Jeffrey got to spend an hour taking a swim lesson, while WKYC did various live shots. He had a great time just doing something he enjoys anyway (albeit usually not that early!)

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You can see Jeffrey swimming along here and here.

We’ve been so happy with his progress at Goldfish Swim School, not only in swim skills, but also in self-confidence! We definitely feel confident going into the summer season that he is ready for all the pool and water fun the season brings!

Luca West

On Saturday evening, my mom and I met up for a Girls’ Night Out at Luca West.

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From perfect cocktails to delicious food, this is a great spot to dine! We started with an appetizer course of the Sacchetti, white truffle and ricotta-stuffed sacchetti pasta with white truffle and aged fig balsamic.

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This is one rich dish, but so worth the indulgence! Pro tip: use the bread to sop up the extra sauce!

For our entrees, we both chose veal: grilled veal chop with truffle butter for Mom and veal piccata for me. Both were served with roasted potatoes and asparagus.

We both cleaned our plates! The veal was tender, the piccata sauce was bright and citrusy, and the sides were the perfect compliment.

For dessert, we went with a trio of traditional choices: crème brûlée (so smooth and creamy), cannoli, and tiramisu (light and fluffy perfection). All were delicious and left us with something to take home to our husbands, too!

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I am always so impressed with the food and the service at Luca West…truly a fabulous place to enjoy an Italian feast!

Tremont Greek Fest

On Sunday, we crossed another item off my 2019 Blog Bucket List at the Tremont Greek Fest.

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The festival offers lots of traditional Greek food prepared from family recipes, from gyros to souvlaki to lamb shank. You can grab a gyro to go or stay and enjoy a full dinner platter.

Matthew had the jumbo gyro and I had the souvlaki pita. Both were so flavorful!

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Of course, we couldn’t skip the pastry table. The baklava was nutty, sticky goodness!

There are also vendors, Greek music and dancing, and a couple carnival-style games.

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Festivals always say summertime to me, so it was great to spend the unofficial kick-off to summer at a festival that I’ve always wanted to attend!

Jeffrey’s Birthday

Monday brought Jeffrey’s 5th birthday!

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Since we had his big party last weekend, we spent the day with our parents and him, playing in the backyard, exchanging presents, and of course eating.

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I made grilled garlic tequila lime flank steak (recipe here), street corn (recipe here), guacamole, and salsa, so we could all build our own perfect platter of Mexican-style deliciousness.

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For dessert, we went with our go-to Mitchell’s Ice Cream for a build-your-own-sundae bar.

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It was a lovely, relaxed afternoon celebrating our favorite young man!

How was your weekend?

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Why? Tri-C Jazz Fest Giveaway!

Cleveland has such a wealth of cultural offerings and one of the coolest happens when the weather heats up. This summer marks the milestone 40th annual Tri-C JazzFest, presented by KeyBank, happening June 27-29 at Playhouse Square.

Tri-C JazzFest packs a great lineup of concerts, celebrating Cleveland’s contributions to jazz with both iconic and emerging artists.

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On June 28 and 29, you can enjoy free concerts from seventeen different local bands on the outdoor Strassman Insurance Stage at Playhouse Square. Check out the full schedule here.

The weekend’s outdoor activities also include shopping tents and trucks, cooking demonstrations, food trucks, balloon art, giant puppets, dancing, games, photo opps, artist interviews, and much more.

The indoor line-up of ticketed concerts includes such diverse performers as Christian McBride, Clayton-Hamilton, Regina Carter and Xavier Davis, Dominick Farinacci’s Rhapsody in Blue, and more.

Tri-C JazzFest individual tickets and festival passes are on sale now. Or you can enter to win two tickets to the indoor concert of your choice right here!

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

1. Leave a comment telling me which concert you would like to attend.

2. Visit Tri-C JazzFest and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Hop over to @whycle on Instagram and follow the instructions with the Tri-C Jazz Fest image.

4. Follow @TriCJazzFest 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 @TriCJazzFest from @WhyCLE #giveaway #tricjazzfest https://whycle.com/2019/05/21/why-tri-c-jazz-fest-giveaway-5 

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

The giveaway will close on Sunday, May 26 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote Tri-C JazzFest. In exchange, I will receive two complimentary tickets to the show and special event of my choice, as well as two tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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