Coventry Village to dedicate Pekar Park on July 25

Illustration of Harvey Pekar provided by the Harvey Pekar estate.

The Coventry Outdoor Courtyard, at the northwest corner of Coventry Road and Euclid Heights Boulevard, was a treasured spot for Harvey Pekar—internationally known underground comic author, music critic and media personality—who often referenced the Coventry neighborhood in his work. Pekar, a longtime Cleveland Heights resident, died in 2010.

On Saturday, July 25, the courtyard will be renamed Pekar Park in a special public dedication event. The Coventry Village Special Improvement District, the City of Cleveland Heights, Jakprints and the Harvey Pekar Estate all collaborated to make this event possible.

A festival, from noon to 6 p.m. in Pekar Park, will celebrate Pekar's work, and that of other Greater Cleveland comic book writers and graphic novelists. The official dedication will take place at 12:30 p.m., followed by live jazz, 1–3 p.m., and storytelling, 6:30–8:30 p.m. The dedication will conclude with a free 9 p.m. showing of “American Splendor,” the 2003 film based on Pekar's life and work, in Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park.

[Note: In case of severe bad weather, the event will be held on Sunday, July 26.]

Tommy Fello, owner of Tommy’s Restaurant on Coventry Road, commented, “It seems fitting that the park will give tribute to the memory of Harvey. With this dedication Harvey (in memory) can return to his favorite meeting place after all these years."

Angela Hetrick

Angela Hetrick is executive director of Coventry Village Special Improvement District.

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Volume 8, Issue 7, Posted 10:37 AM, 06.23.2015