UH's fall festival is back for fourth year

The stars of Fall Fest every year are the artists, including University Heights resident Dontty Lakina.

Generous financial support from the Ohio Arts Council, as well as Dollar Bank, will result in more live entertainment at this year’s University Heights Fall Fest.

The fourth annual festival returns to Walter Stinson Community Park on Sunday, Oct. 15, from noon to 5 p.m.

Award-winning singer and songwriter Jason Patrick Meyers will headline Fall Fest this year. Other performers include Wizbang Circus and Heights Poet Laureate Siaara Freeman.

Robin VanLear from Artful Cleveland will present an original theatrical production, “This Art is for the Birds.” The interactive, outdoor theater piece was created in the tradition of Greek comedies, complete with its own chorus, and backed up by the reggae band No Bad Days.

“This Art is for the Birds is a comic but meaningful parable about the birds of the world banding together to figure out how to save Mother Earth after the canary in the coal mine dies,” VanLear said. “Costumes, props and some of the text were created through a series of summer camps for youth and workshops for adults."

Dr. U.R. Awesome will be back this year to present his interactive bubble show, and crowd favorites Blake Parhamovich of Balloons by Blake, and magician Richard McClendon will also return.

As is the case every year, the stars of Fall Fest are the artists who set up shop in the park. Last year, more than 75 artists participated, and even more are expected this year. Artists and vendors attending this year for the first time include Anthena’s Request, Art by Jackie, Mr. Crisp Pickles, Mystic Sone by Katelyn, Nanette Reilly, Piece Love Pastry, A Good Turn, and Barb’s Bunny Hutch.

Festivalgoers are advised to arrive at Fall Fest with empty stomachs. Food trucks scheduled to appear on Oct. 15 include Yum Village, Twisted Grill ‘n’ Grind, Sopranos Authentic Italian, and Pop Culture CLE.

“Fall Fest has become a great way for our residents and nearby communities to enjoy a day of wonderful entertainment and shop local vendors,” said UH Council Member Christopher Cooney. “I'm really looking forward to seeing everyone there.”

John Carroll University’s radio station, WJCU 88.7 FM, is also a sponsor of this year’s Fest. WJCU will broadcast live from Fall Fest, and will distribute promotional items.

Fall Fest is made possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC).

The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically.

Chris Juchno, branch manager of the University Heights Dollar Bank, said he is proud to work with University Heights to support Fall Fest. “Dollar Bank is a community bank. That means we can focus on empowering the communities we serve to do the things they hold dearest,” Juchno said. “Building a sense of community through events like the Juneteenth Celebration and Fall Fest is important to residents of University Heights, and that’s why it’s important to us.”

Mike Cook

Mike Cook is the communications and civic engagement director for University Heights.

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Volume 16, Issue 10, Posted 10:36 AM, 09.29.2023