I’m always impressed by the number and creativity of the various stations you pass on the hayride, especially when you consider that they’re all staffed with volunteers!
Jeffrey enjoyed the corny jokes and various just slightly spooky things we saw on the hayride.
He also loved the Glow Stick Dance show and made his way through his first haunted house in the festival field.
Lake Metroparks Farmpark’s events are always top-notch! Halloween Hayrides are sold out for this year, but stay tuned for next year’s offerings. And I’ll definitely be grabbing tickets for the holiday Country Lights event when they go on sale (November 2 for Farmpark members and Lake County residents, November 3 for others).
Well, you might have heard on the news that it was a crazy weekend at Cedar Point. I’m here to confirm that it was!
The park was so crowded that it was temporarily closed to new guests on Saturday! Between the weather and the great deal with the new Gold Pass, it’s easy to see why.
We actually went both Saturday and Sunday and had a blast! Jeffrey trick or treated through Kiddie Kingdom, checked out the pumpkins, and generally enjoyed the Halloweekends fun.
But the big excitement was getting his 48″ wristband, which meant he was tall enough for roller coasters! We went on the Iron Dragon…
…the Blue Streak (which was my first roller coaster)…
…and Cedar Downs with his new height access.
He absolutely loved the rides and I know he’ll be a ride warrior next summer too!
Halloweekends continues this coming weekend (October 25-27) and is worth checking out for both family fun and spooky shenanigans!
This year, Jeffrey is dressing up like a race car driver for Halloween, complete with a gas can treat bag and a wagon that I turned into a race car.
We cruised through the Zoo, stopping at the trick or treat street, the dance party…
…getting encased in a giant bubble…
…and making our way through the hay maze.
There was lots of fun stuff to explore and the weather was perfect! Boo at the Zoo continues on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 5-9pm through Sunday, October 27. You can purchase tickets online.
On Saturday, I met up with my friend Anne to celebrate her birthday at the wineries in Geneva. This has quickly become a favorite spot to celebrate birthdays, with so many great places to go!
We started at M Cellars, where the Brut Rosé and some tasty snacks were enjoyed by all!
Anne brought these hilarious wine glass markers to keep our glasses in check throughout the day!
I was also super excited about these glasses I found from Lulusimonstudio for Anne’s birthday present. They say “Partners in Wine,” which is perfect because Anne and I co-chaired Playhouse Square Partners together!
Our next stop was Cask 307, which I had not been to yet.
Despite not being a fan of chardonnay, I really liked the bourbon chardonnay there. The chicken and goat cheese flatbread is also delicious!
There is so much to do, from a corn maze to a hay ride through fields filled with fun scarecrows…
…to a kids hay play area…
…to picking out a perfect pumpkin.
It was a great fall afternoon! The Pumpkin Festival at Red Wagon Farm continues every weekend through Sunday, October 27. Admission is free, but activities such as the hay ride and corn maze require payment.
Despite the warm weather, it is fall, y’all! And this is one of my favorite fashion seasons. You can be cozy, without being all covered up by heavy jackets. You can layer. And you can start wearing deeper, richer colors.
I recently did a little shopping excursion around Legacy Village to find some of my favorite looks for fall. Here’s the looks I’m loving for this season and where I found them:
If you follow me on Instagram, you know I’m crazy for animal print this season! And why not? Animal prints mix well with lots of different solid colors, they’re fun and playful, and you have no shortage of options this fall season when it comes to adding a hint of the jungle to your wardrobe.
With everything from tops to pants to dresses, there’s a leopard look that will fit your style! White House Black Market also has the perfect solid-color tops and bottoms to pair with your print of choice.
So, it might not feel like it right now, but fall is jacket season and the best ones are both functional and cute. I love a moto jacket for casual days and nights, like this one from Banyan Tree.
Paired with a super-soft Emily Roggenburk Cleveland tee (because Cleveland pride is always in style), I am loving this look for a clambake or fall festival.
Blazers are also back in a big way this fall. This soft gray blazer with the most adorable elbow patches is from LOFT.
From work wear to the perfect item to throw on with jeans, this structured look is definitely my style!
If this fall has a color, it’s plum. You’re seeing it everywhere from athleisure to dresses. Here are two of my favorite plum pieces at Legacy Village:
This skirt from LOFT. It’s perfect for the office, but I paired it with this more casual black tee that can easily take it to happy hour too. I love the zipper details too!
In cooler weather, this will pair perfectly with tights and boots!
And this sweater dress from Banyan Tree, with hints of plum, is also on my list. I just generally love sweater dresses and this one has pockets too!
So, as you’re refreshing your closet for fall, look no further than Legacy Village for all the must-have pieces to make this season your most fashionable!
***Dislcosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village, for which I receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. I also was invited by LOFT at Legacy Village to host a shopping party, at which I received two complimentary items of my choice. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
It was a mostly nostalgic weekend around these parts…
I celebrated my 20-year (eek!) high school reunion this weekend. On Friday night, I met up with my Magnificat High School Class of 1999 classmates at Townhall.
From old yearbooks to 90’s music to a montage of old pictures and memory books, it was a trip down high school lane.
We were in the new upstairs room at Townhall, which was the perfect space for a group! From a private bar to plenty of seating and mingling space to cute decor, this is a great spot!
The specialty drink for the evening was the Blue Streak, the Magnificat mascot (and a darn tasty drink, too).
It was so fun catching up in person with everyone!
On Saturday evening, I went back to Magnificat itself for the reunion weekend Mass. My dear friend Melissa was singing at the Mass and it was a wonderful chance to be reminded how much the mission of the school means to me still.
I also got to show Jeffrey around a little bit and he met some of my former teachers, which was really fun!
I was a bit ambivalent about attending reunion, especially since I’ve stayed so much more in touch with my college alma mater than my high school one. But I’m really glad I went and reconnected with that place and those women who meant a lot to me.
From slides to pony rides to hay bale and corn mazes to buying pumpkins and the best apple cider on the planet, a trip to Patterson’s will leave you fully immersed in that fall feeling, no matter what the weather is going to be like this week!
Patterson’s Fun Fest is open daily through Sunday, October 27. Admission is $5 per person on weekdays and $8 per person on weekends. Don’t miss your chance for some good old fashioned fall fun!
Inside the tent, there were tasty morsels from some outstanding Cleveland chefs, along with live music, a spirited live auction, a wine pull, and a special appearance from Willie, one of Fieldstone Farm’s therapy horses.
The dishes I most enjoyed from the evening were the flavorful duck breast with fried farro from Flour Restaurant…
…the truffled bologna sandwich from The Black Pig (bonus points for serving it on an English muffin…I love those!)…
…the Tinman burger from Tinman, which is one of the tastiest burgers I’ve had in ages…
…the lobster mac ‘n cheese with a delicate sauce that didn’t detract from the lobster from The Driftwood Group…
…the apple tart, which was fall dessert at it’s best, also from The Driftwood Group…
…and the simple, delicious cacio e pepe agnolotti from The Union Club.
All of this food, wine, and fun raised money for Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center, which serves over 1,000 children and adults with special needs by connecting them with horses and teaching them independence, social skills, and more.
It was another year of perfection (and accidental outfit twinning with Jen) at Chefs Unbridled!
***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote Chefs Unbridled. In exchange, I received two complimentary tickets to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
Burntwood Tavern is one of my favorite spots for happy hour, brunch, or dinner, with consistently delicious cocktails and food. This week, I got a sneak peek at their new fall menu items, which will be available at all locations starting on Monday, September 9.
There are three new fall cocktails: an apple spice mojito, a cinnamon mule, and the Razzberry Sherbet, all of which are well-balanced and delicious.
My favorite of the bunch was the apple spice mojito, which is perfect for that in-between summer and fall season when you don’t know what to wear or what to drink!
New on the menu for fall are also some tasty food items that are warm, filling, and perfect for the season.
The beef brisket tacos have house-smoked brisket, texas bbq, red cabbage, and feta. These are great to share as an appetizer or keep for yourself for a tasty Taco Tuesday!
The shrimp cobb salad has colby jack, avocado salsa, tomato, onion, applewood smoked bacon, egg, and house dressing. Light, bright, and delicious!
The panko-crusted grouper sandwich comes with lemon aioli, arugula, tomato, and pickles. I love the crunch of the panko breading on the mild grouper.
The hot Italian sandwich is one of my favorites of the new items, with pepperoni, salami, cherry peppers, tomato, red onion, and lettuce. The crispy bread, the salty meats…it’s not to be missed!
My other favorite of the new menu items is the beef stroganoff, with house-smoked pot roast and mushrooms over fettuccine. This is warm, satisfying comfort food done right!
The last new menu item we sampled was the hunter’s chicken, with mushrooms, tomato, and fettuccine alfredo. Again, this is a perfect comfort dish for cool nights!
While we were at Burntwood Tavern, we also got to make some of our own infused vodka, a Burntwood Tavern specialty. Many of Burntwood Tavern’s cocktails incorporate house-made infusions for a truly special drink.
Their happy hour runs from 3pm-6pm every day of the week, with half-price starters and flatbreads, $3 bottle beers, $4 draughts, $5 house wines, and $6 signature cocktails.
Burnwood Tavern also offers live music on Fridays, kids eat free on Mondays, and a great brunch and Bloody Mary bar from 10am-3pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
From the new menu items to the staples like the Tavern tater tots and tasty flatbreads, you can’t miss at Burntwood Tavern.
***Disclosure: I was invited to a complimentary tasting event at Burntwood Tavern. I received a gift card for myself and a gift card to give away (stay tuned on Instagram next week). As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
As thoughts start to turn toward fall, one of my favorite annual foodie evenings is just around the corner: Chefs Unbridled presented by the Harrington Family Foundation on Saturday, September 7.
This event not only brings together some of Cleveland’s finest chefs, but it does so in a beautiful setting at the Chagrin Valley Hunt Club Polo Field.
Stroll around the decorated tent and enjoy the food and drinks, wine pull, and live auctions or pop outside for food and dessert trucks, a bourbon tasting from Tom’s Foolery, and horse-drawn carriage rides with Cleveland storyteller Dan Ruminski.
Of course, the stars of the evening are the chefs who will create delectable dishes to enjoy.
This year’s Chefs Unbridled chefs are:
Scott Kuhn and Chris Hodgson of Driftwood Restaurant Group
Matt Mytro of Flour Restaurant
Arnaud Berthelier of The Union Club
Will Burke of Revival Social 216
Vince Thomascik, Brett Sawyer, and Nolan Tidwell of Good Company
Brett Zubek of Sol
Joe Pinzone of Forno Wood-Fired Catering
Demetrios Athenos of Bold Food and Drink
Mike Schoen of Tinman
David Kocab of Black Pig
Chefs Unbridled is a fundraiser for Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding Center, which serves over 1,000 special needs children and adults by connecting them with horses for care, lessons, and friendship. Some of the horses make an appearance at the event, too!
Last year’s event raised nearly $300,000 and this year promises to be even bigger and better!
Tickets are currently on sale for $140 and can be purchased online. You can also purchase Golden Ticket raffle tickets for $100, which puts you into a drawing for a 5-course meal for 20 people with wine pairings, prepared in the winner’s home by Chefs Kuhn and Hodgson. These tickets are available now and will not be sold at the event. Winner need not be present to win.
I hope to see you under the tent and under the stars at Chefs Unbridled!
***Disclosure: I was asked by Fieldstone Farm to help promote Chefs Unbridled. In exchange, I will receive two complimentary tickets to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
This event combines Cleveland’s love for the Browns, the city’s celebrated culinary scene, and the chance to help those in need into one fabulous evening! Every dollar raised can provide four meals to those in need.
Your ticket includes wine and beer tastings, as well as delicious nibbles from some of Cleveland’s best restaurants, like Fahrenheit, Momocho, Pier W, Blue Point Grille, Zack Bruell Restaurants, B Spot Burgers, and more.
Plus, you’ll get to mingle with Cleveland Browns player and alumni, pose for photo opps, bid on amazing silent auction items, and enjoy the beautiful Club Lounge at FirstEnergy Stadium.
This year’s honorary co-chairs for the event are Chef Rocco Whalen, Jarvis Landry, and Josh Cribbs.
Tickets for Taste of the Browns are currently on sale for $175 for general admission and $250 for VIP admission. Prices increase on Thursday, August 8 to $200 for general admission and $295 for VIP admission, so score your tickets today! You can purchase tickets online.
Hope to see you at this gastronomic gridiron!
***Disclosure: I was asked by the Greater Cleveland Food Bank to help promote Taste of the Browns. In exchange, I will receive two complimentary general admission tickets to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
Held at the Children’s Museum of Cleveland, the event brought together chef-inspired takes on favorite kids’ foods and drinks, along with a DJ, silent auction, and wine pull to raise funds for the Children’s Hunger Alliance mission of providing nutritious food to children across Ohio by partnering with local community organizations.
I snagged a nice bottle of sauvignon blanc from the wine pull and Melissa scored a Vitamix from the silent auction!
Plus, it was fun to spend an evening in a place where we often take our kids to play. I’m reminded how lucky we are to be able to provide as we do for Jeffrey and how important it is to help those less able to do so.
***Disclosure: I was asked by Children’s Hunger Alliance to help promote Eat Like a Kid Again. In exchange, I received two complimentary general admission tickets. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
Put on Your Boogie Shoes
Friday night, Matthew and I transformed ourselves into a classic Cleveland couple for the Charles Bowlus Charities Put on Your Boogie Shoes fundraiser.
This annual event was held this year at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown and featured some delicious food stations (build your own mac ‘n cheese FTW), delightful drinks, and one of our favorite local cover bands: Faction.
Everyone in attendance went all out with their costumes! Some of our favorites included the Scooby Doo group, the Handmaid’s Tale handmaids, and the Chipotle burrito.
***Disclosure: I was asked by Charles Bowlus Charities to help promote Put on Your Boogie Shoes. In exchange, I received two complimentary general admission tickets. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***
We all really enjoy these shows! They introduce children to live theater in a setting that is accessible. Children can talk quietly during the performances, attend pre-show workshops, and the shows are all around one hour long.
We’ve found the performances to be thoughtful, engaging, and fun!
While season tickets are sold out for the 2018-2019 season, you can purchase individual tickets for the remaining shows, which include “The Rainbow Fish,” “Emily Brown and the Thing,” and “Junie B. Jones.”
Grossology and Spooktacular Science
Since Sunday was rainy and cold, we decided to spend time indoors with two of Jeffrey’s godparents: Amanda and Scott (follow their super fun adventures on Tow for the Road!)
The Great Lakes Science Center was hosting their Halloween party, Spooktacular Science, with monster dance parties, glow-in-the-dark slime, and exploding pumpkins.
We boarded the wagon and wound our way through a not-too-scary forest filled with fun decorations and enthusiastic actors.
Once we departed the wagon, we could choose from the scary or not-scary path for some Halloween festival fun. We chose the not-scary path and enjoyed playground equipment, tasty food vendors like Corbo’s, and a glow-stick dance party.
The Haunted Hayrides sell out quickly every year, so stay tuned next year for information on ticket sales!
…pick a pumpkin to decorate and play fun Halloween-themed games.
Plus, there was cider and donuts from Patterson Fruit Farm…a fall classic! We always enjoy these school parties that let the kids (and parents) connect outside of glass and have a great time!
Dinner at Red and Eagles Concert
Saturday evening, my dad and I had tickets to see the Eagles at Quicken Loans Arena (thanks, Mom!) We started our evening with dinner at Red, the Steakhouse. Dad and I made our own surf and turf with a pound of king crab legs and a 22-ounce bone-in ribeye.
Both were perfection! We also shared the stuffed hot peppers for an appetizer and the classic creme brulee for dessert. What a great meal!
Then it was off to the concert. This was honestly one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. Vince Gill and Deacon Frey (Glenn Frey’s son) did an incredible job filling Glenn Frey’s shoes.
The hometown crowd loved all the Joe Walsh numbers, of course. The Eagles played two and a half hours of solid music and sounded incredible!
But for me, the best part of the evening was the chance to connect with my dad. We share an appreciation for classic rock (and a good steak), but we don’t often get the chance to do things just the two of us. So the evening was really special and not just because the concert was so great!