Forest Hill Church plans events for Black History Month

February is Black History Month and, for the third consecutive year, members of Forest Hill Church, Presbyterian, at 3031 Monticello Blvd. in Cleveland Heights, have organized events for each weekend of the month that they say are designed to “educate ourselves, strengthen our ties with one another and stir our souls.” All events are open to the public.

On Sunday, Feb. 2, from 12:30–2 p.m., the PBS documentary “The World of Hip-Hop” will be shown. Following the screening, Nobles C. Darby IV, youth pastor at New Spirit Revival Center, will lead a discussion of the film and the issues it raises. A light lunch will be provided.

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Volume 7, Issue 2, Posted 10:49 AM, 01.28.2014

Goodman finishes marathon and helps bomb victims

It was meant to be a 50th birthday celebration and a chance to prove he still had the strength to run long distances. University Heights resident Kevin Goodman entered April's Boston Marathon with the hopes of finishing strong, and he didn't disappoint himself. He crossed the finish line at 3 hours, 3 minutes and 14 seconds. (His finish time when he ran the marathon in his 40s was 3 hours, 11 minutes.)

"I'm sure all of my runs through the Heights and my strengthening at Bikram Yoga Cleveland [in Shaker Heights] prepared me for that day," Goodman said.

He was recovering in his hotel room when something shook the building. "At first I thought it was fireworks," he recalled. "Then I saw black smoke coming up over the library building." Goodman called some loved ones to find out if they knew what was going on, then he went outside of the hotel and toward the finish line.

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Volume 6, Issue 8, Posted 2:13 PM, 07.31.2013

Heights resident receives Ashland University teaching award

Cleveland Heights resident and Ashland University faculty member Fabio Polanco is the recipient of the university’s 2013 Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award. The award, first presented in 1997, was endowed by the late Edward and Louaine Taylor to support high quality teaching at the university.

Polanco, assistant professor of theatre, joined the faculty in 2007. “Fabio Polanco is someone who is indicative of the high quality of the faculty at Ashland University,” said Frank Pettigrew, university provost. “He is unique in that he is acting in shows all across Ohio, which then he translates back to his students in a real-world approach that helps them become more successful in the industry.”

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Volume 6, Issue 6, Posted 2:04 PM, 05.30.2013

Learn to make pysanky—Ukrainian Easter eggs

Church of the Saviour welcomes Melissa Wargo-Geesen as she teaches the art of making Ukrainian Easter eggs in a hands-on workshop on Saturday, March 16. 

A pysanka is a Ukrainian Easter egg decorated with traditional folk designs, which might include crosses, netting or animals. Traditionally, all symbols and color choices have meaning. This unique art form uses a hollowed-out egg which is decorated using a wax-resist (batik) method.

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Volume 6, Issue 3, Posted 12:26 PM, 02.28.2013

Sewer District to send separate stormwater bills to Heights residents

Cleveland Heights residents and some University Heights residents are accustomed to seeing a charge from the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District for wastewater treatment on the quarterly water bills they receive from the City of Cleveland Heights. For these residents wastewater treatment will continue to be billed in this manner, but beginning this year they will also receive a separate quarterly bill directly from the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District Wastewater for the new Regional Stormwater Management Program. The first bills will cover the four-month period ending January 16.

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Volume 6, Issue 3, Posted 8:57 AM, 01.29.2013

Youth gardening team blossoms at Cumberland Pool

Patrons of Cumberland Pool have been greeted this summer with a new sight—a thriving vegetable garden. Formerly a rose garden and, in more recent summers, an empty patch of mulch, the new vegetable garden runs along the fence on the south side of the pool, between the parking lot and the pool deck.

The garden was planted and is tended by the first-ever Cumberland Gardening Team, consisting of 15 children working with four or five adults every Monday morning. The children, who are involved in swimming or diving classes at Cumberland, were interested in improving the sunny enclosure near the pool.

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Volume 5, Issue 8, Posted 1:47 PM, 07.31.2012

CH resident chosen as president-elect of Junior League of Cleveland

Cleveland Heights resident Annemarie Grassi has been chosen as the 2012–13 president-elect of the Junior League of Cleveland (JLC).

JLC is celebrating its centennial anniversary this year. According to its mission statement, JLC is an organization of women volunteers dedicated to community change. Its members show creativity and diversity while promoting voluntarism.

Grassi has been with Open Doors Academy for 10 years and resides in Cleveland Heights. She has been a member of the JLC for eight years and served as co-chair of the Girls Make Great Leaders Initiative and Girl Culture Initiative. She also served on the board of directors as training director for one year and membership director for two years.

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Volume 5, Issue 7, Posted 12:47 PM, 06.19.2012

Calling for entries in ethnic culinary contest

An ethnic culinary contest will highlight the first-ever Heights Culinary Heritage Show on June 24, hosted by Council Gardens, 2501 North Taylor Road in Cleveland Heights. The free, festive gathering for adults in the community is supported by a grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

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Volume 5, Issue 4, Posted 10:41 AM, 04.04.2012

Fresh Fork Market farm buying club in CH

Could you have guessed that there are nearly 75,000 farms in the state of Ohio, or that less than 1 percent of your food supply is produced in Northeast Ohio? Seems incredible, doesn’t it? That’s what Fresh Fork Market founder Trevor Clatterbuck thought in 2008. 

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Volume 5, Issue 4, Posted 10:36 AM, 04.04.2012

Cleveland Heights Democrats to hold ‘War on Women’ forum

Women have been in the news lately—and to many people, that’s not a good thing.

Since the beginning of the year, attacks on women’s reproductive freedom have ramped up to a fever pitch, an assault that’s been dubbed the “War on Women.” The Cleveland Heights Democratic Club will address the topic in a forum on Thursday, April 12, called “The War on Women: How Did It Start? How Can We Fight Back?”

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Volume 5, Issue 4, Posted 11:29 AM, 03.20.2012

New report shows that poverty has increased in Heights cities

In a recent report, “The Changing Face of Poverty in Northeast Ohio,” the Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development at Case Western Reserve University (povertycenter.cwru.edu) reported that the number of people living in poverty has markedly increased over the past decade. Inner-ring suburbs, including Cleveland Heights, are among the most affected. The report cites unemployment, lower wages, and increased living costs as some of the reasons. Another factor is the abandonment of some areas by wealthier citizens who are then replaced by poorer ones, or not replaced at all.

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Volume 5, Issue 3, Posted 12:44 PM, 02.28.2012

Heights Observer in Africa

A moment before zip lining over the Zambezi River from Zambia to Zimbabwe, Annalena Weissman, an 8th grader at Ruffing Montessori School, pauses to catch up on the news back home. Photo by Claudia Weissman.

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Volume 4, Issue 9, Posted 1:55 PM, 09.01.2011

Remembering Loren Weiss

Engineer, businessman, golfer, aviator, poet

Loren Franklin Weiss, Cleveland Heights poet laureate from 2006 to 2007, died on June 15. My favorite memory of Loren is watching him, caught in a summer downpour, run all the way from the Heights Arts office next to the Cedar Lee Theatre to his car at the far edge of the parking lot. He was 80 years old at the time.

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Volume 4, Issue 7, Posted 11:09 AM, 07.05.2011

Scrap metal sculptor's life constructed from unexpected parts

A large bird is the first to greet those who pull into the Barons’ driveway. He is not there to fight squirrels for the seeds in the birdfeeders scattered around the yard; his job is to play host.

His head and neck are made from a black rod that extends through his yellow-wheel torso to form the base of the tail, which is covered with bright red fan blades. Groups of eight horseshoes, painted yellow and black, are welded together to form skeletal wings. The colorful metallic feathers stand out against the brown brick house behind it. The creature stands in a bed of ivy, balancing the burner from an oil furnace on his head. His hollow eyes are trained on the ground in front of him, as if waiting for a friend to pop out of the dark green sea.

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Volume 4, Issue 7, Posted 10:08 AM, 06.14.2011

Fewer residents, more diversity in Heights cities

The recently released results of Census 2010 revealed population losses over the preceding 10 years in both Cleveland Heights and University Heights, as well as in every bordering community. Cleveland Heights’s population dropped 7.7 percent to 46,121. University Heights's was down 4.3 percent to 13,539.

Both communities remain diverse by Greater Cleveland standards, and for the first time, no racial group is in a majority in the city of Cleveland Heights. The city’s African-American population dropped for the first time on record—a 6.2 percent drop to 19,587, or 42.5 percent of the total population. The white population fell 12.4 percent to 22,984, or 49.8 percent.

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Volume 4, Issue 4, Posted 10:24 AM, 04.05.2011

Traffic report

Notice: the variable green- and red-lighted lane arrows on Cedar Hill were removed in 2003. Drivers are advised to use the extreme right lane when ascending or descending the hill until other drivers become accustomed to the change. Suggested alternatives are Mayfield Road, Edgehill Road, or North Park Boulevard and MLK Drive/Fairhill Road.

Potholes have been reported on Mayfield Road, Edgehill Road, North Park Boulevard and MLK Drive/Fairhill Road. To avoid rough roads on the way to downtown, Heights-area drivers are advised to travel east on SR 87 to Richmond Road south and Chagrin Boulevard east, then follow I-271 south to I-480 west to I-80 west. At the I-90 merge, proceed east on I-90 to downtown Cleveland. No new paving is anticipated in urban areas until approximately two years after the conclusion of the Kasich administration.

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Volume 4, Issue 4, Posted 11:01 PM, 03.31.2011

Cable TV – on the cheap

In the dark ages, turning on the TV required patience, not money. You turned “on” the on/off knob, saw a little red light glow at the bottom of the wood cabinet. Then just waited for the vacuum tubes to warm up to see the picture and hear the sound. One payment for the TV and one payment for the antenna; it was free TV after that.

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Volume 4, Issue 2, Posted 12:56 PM, 12.14.2010

Remembering Ezekiel "Zeke" Burrows

The news in recent months has been about Cleveland losing stars to Miami, but sometimes it goes the other way. Ezekiel "Zeke" Burrows of Cleveland Heights, who died on Dec. 15 at age 76 after a brief illness, came to us from his former home in Miami and, during his many years here, contributed immeasurably to the civic life of Greater Cleveland.

Burrows served on the Cleveland Heights Planning Commission for the last dozen years, where he was known for a unique style of oratory, an always friendly demeanor, and his insistence on commending his fellow citizens on the plans and ideas they brought before the commission.

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Volume 4, Issue 1, Posted 9:30 PM, 12.19.2010

Benefit raises $7,600 for Friends of the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Library

The second-annual Nighttown Academy of Poetry & Letters took place on Oct. 24 at Nighttown Restaurant in Cleveland Heights. A stellar cast, directed by local Irish actress Derdriu Ring and, Plain Dealer columnist Regina Brett, presented "Wise Up!!"

The event featured a cast of local celebrities, literary luminaries, and friends of the arts, each of whom read and brought to life a short poem or piece of prose. The readings were punctuated with musical numbers led by the Academy's music director, pianist Joe Hunter. Also assisting were members of the Friends of the CH-UH Library, who manned the silent auction, led by volunteer Adaora Schmiedl. Photos from the event can be viewed at http://bit.ly/NighttownWiseUp2010.

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Volume 3, Issue 12, Posted 8:57 PM, 11.08.2010

Community events

Oct. 2-10

Sustainable Heights Week

Tour a solar-powered house, ride your bike to the farmer’s market, hike Doan Brook or participate in a Green Assets Mapping Party in historic Coventry Village. Most events are free and many are family friendly. Visit www.sustainableheightsnetwork.blogspot.com for a full list of events. For more information, e-mail the network at sustainablehts@gmail.com or call 216-320-1423. Sustainable Heights Network


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Volume 3, Issue 10, Posted 2:00 PM, 10.01.2010

Headlines Word Search

Here are the headlines from pages 1-2 of the September Heights Observer. Find and circle these words in the letter array, where they may run (forwards or backwards) horizontally, vertically or diagonally (see marked example “THE”). Though words (like “the”) may repeat in the headlines, each generally appears in the array only once.


Music Settlement halts plan, but talks continue

Ohio wins Rade to the Top; CH-UH students will benefit

New business alliance partners with FutureHeights in Best of the Heights awards

Cleveland Heights Bicycle Coaltion petitions CH City Council to improve bicycle infrastructure

Motorcars opens eco-friendly car wash

New documentary on minority-owned businesses

Swim team wins second place

Meet author Dan Chaon

Workshops for becoming a true Observer

How to Walk to School movement gains traction here

Enthusiastic volunteers are helping the Heights Observer thrive.

Click here to view the Puzzle

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Volume 3, Issue 10, Posted 3:03 PM, 10.03.2010

My father and the facts of life

Born and bred on a farm in West Virginia until he was 26 years of age, my father came to Cleveland to take a job on the railroad in Collinwood. He worked for the New York Central, first in the steam engine roundhouse, and later in the diesel shops.

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Volume 3, Issue 9, Posted 12:36 PM, 08.22.2010

Community Events

Monday, Sept. 13
Public Hearing: City of Cleveland Heights Strategic Development Plan Draft

Tuesday, Sept. 21
Workshop: Using the Heights Observer to Help Your Organization

Thursday, Sept. 23
District 10 General Election Forum

Saturday, Sept. 25
Home & Garden Tour Preview Party

Tuesday, Sept. 28
Workshop: What's the News: How to be an educated news consumer

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Volume 3, Issue 9, Posted 4:15 PM, 08.26.2010

Observer election policy

With the November election coming into focus, the Heights Observer is announcing its policy for contributions by candidates for local office.

As a community newspaper staffed by volunteers and committed to equal access for everyone, the Observer is unique among publications in providing opportunity for any member of the Cleveland Heights and University Heights communities to raise and discuss issues of local interest.

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Volume 3, Issue 8, Posted 9:53 AM, 07.30.2010

Heights Observer in London

Annalena Weissman of Cleveland Heights, soon to be a seventh grader at Ruffing Montessori School, takes a pause to read the Heights Observer in front of Big Ben in London.

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Volume 3, Issue 7, Posted 12:11 PM, 06.25.2010

Cleveland Heights Democratic Club to host secretary of state candidate May 12

The Cleveland Heights Democratic Club has joined with other eastside Democratic clubs and countywide Democratic organizations to bring candidate for secretary of state, Maryellen O’Shaughnessy, to Cleveland Heights for a public forum at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 12, at the Cleveland Heights Recreation Center. It’s free and open to everyone.

The forum should be of special interest to those wishing to know more about the state's electoral process. The secretary of state is the top elections official, who oversees the 88 county boards of election.

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Volume 3, Issue 5, Posted 10:51 PM, 04.16.2010

Heights Observer spotted in Hawaii

Annalena Weissman of Cleveland Heights, a sixth grade student at Ruffing Montessori School, pauses atop Haleakala Volcano on Maui to catch up on the news from back home.
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Volume 3, Issue 5, Posted 3:50 PM, 04.27.2010

A glass of port by a warm fire

Winter conjures up images of relaxing in front of a roaring fire in a ski lodge and sipping a glass of port. While the Heights may lack ski lodges, there is no reason why a glass of port can’t be enjoyed in front of a roaring blaze in your fireplace.
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Volume 3, Issue 4, Posted 11:45 AM, 02.16.2010

Picking up poop is the right thing to doo.

Why? Because dogs can't flush. Doggies can’t scoop it, so you have to doo it! The Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District has introduced a campaign encouraging dog owners to Pick Up Poop, or “PUP.”  PUP educates pet owners about the environmental hazards of abandoned poop and encourages them to scoop that poop!   

Dog poop is a contributor to many water quality problems, impacting not only local waterways but area beaches. When it rains, the runoff takes just about everything off the ground with it. Lawn chemicals, litter, road salt and debris, cigarette butts and bacteria from dog poop are just a few possible contaminants.
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Volume 3, Issue 4, Posted 9:58 AM, 04.28.2010

Letters Policy

Letters to the Editor

The Heights Observer welcomes letters to the editor. They must be submitted electronically, along with the writer's name, phone number and e-mail address, to:

website: www.heightsobserver.org/members


e-mail: info@futureheights.org

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Volume 3, Issue 4, Posted 4:30 PM, 03.29.2010

Heights writer to speak at national conference

David Budin, a writer from Cleveland Heights, has been selected to speak at the 39th annual national Writers Conference of the American Society of Journalists and Authors in April at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. He is also serving as co-chair of this year’s conference.
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Volume 3, Issue 4, Posted 1:36 PM, 02.11.2010

Full and accurate census count important to city's bottom line

Answering 10 simple questions this month can make all the difference for economically stressed Cleveland Heights.

With one of the shortest questionnaires in history, the 2010 Census, arriving on your doorstep soon, asks for name, gender, age, race, ethnicity, relationship and whether you own or rent your home. It takes only about 10 minutes for the average household to complete.

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Volume 3, Issue 3, Posted 10:59 AM, 02.16.2010

RTA service cuts will result in need to transfer to reach downtown

If the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) implements service cuts as planned for April, Cleveland Heights and University Heights will become unique among inner-ring suburbs in that they will have no direct public transit service that is, without a transfer to downtown Cleveland. Several citizens expressed their concerns at a public hearing Jan. 6 at the Cleveland Heights Community Center.
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Volume 3, Issue 2, Posted 9:22 PM, 01.19.2010

Get the news where it's freshest at www.heightsobserver.org

What’s in the newspaper is only a portion of what we’re reporting. The rest is online at www.heightsobserver.org.

If you haven’t visited lately, here’s what you missed:

On the Observer Forum (www.heightsobserver.org/deck): You would have known a month before anyone else that the Oakwood Club was merging with Mayfield Country Club and trying to sell its golf course, clubhouse and other facilities valued by the county at $5.9 million. (Dec. 14)

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Volume 3, Issue 2, Posted 9:57 PM, 01.25.2010

Big Fun owner holds dance to benefit friend

On Jan. 23, nearly 200 Heights-area residents and other friends of Jon Lash gathered at the the Beachland Ballroom and Tavern in Cleveland, to dance, party and help a friend in need.

The event, dubbed Benefit for a Buddy, was the work of Big Fun owner Steve Presser, a close friend of Lash since childhood. Each attendee paid at least $10; Presser continues to accept  donations at Big Fun on Coventry from supporters who couldn't attend.

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Volume 3, Issue 2, Posted 10:17 AM, 01.26.2010

Big Fun owner holds benefit to help local friend in need

Steve Presser, owner of Big Fun, has anounced a dance to benefit his best friend, Cleveland Heights resident Jon Lash, who has lost his income, disability coverage and medical insurance due to complications following heart bypass surgery.

The benefit will be held beginning at 8 p.m., Saturday Jan. 23, at the Beachland Ballroom, 15711 Waterloo Road, Cleveland (link to map: http://bit.ly/6Osdwa).

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Volume 3, Issue 1, Posted 1:24 PM, 01.17.2010

A good deal at the Mad Greek

In these tough economic times, many local restaurants are struggling.  Some have met this challenge by cutting back on staff, portion size or quality--much to the dismay of their customers.  Others have relied on creative solutions and new ideas.  The Mad Greek, at the top of Cedar Hill, is one of the latter.

Through the end of January, at least, they are offering any bottle of wine on their list for only $22.  While they still have very good wines by the glass, at $22 you can put a little more zing into your meal.  If you don't finish the bottle, Ohio law allows you to bring it home.

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Volume 3, Issue 1, Posted 9:13 AM, 12.16.2009


Listening to those among us who are quiet--even mute--is becoming an increasingly urgent matter.
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Volume 3, Issue 1, Posted 10:45 AM, 11.02.2009

JCU media class helps brand FutureHeights

"Your Voice. Your Community. Your FutureHeights." is the tag line members of John Carroll University Professor Sara Stashower's graduate class recommended. FutureHeights board members, Mark Majewski (far left), Bob Rosenbaum (second from left) and executive director, Deanna Bremer Fisher (far right) attended the class's final presentation on media strategy and planning in December. The class suggested branding opportunities for FutureHeights and its publication, the Heights Observer.
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Volume 3, Issue 1, Posted 9:10 PM, 12.15.2009

State Rep. Boyd's diabetes insurance bill passes Ohio House

The Ohio House of Representatives today approved a bill sponsored by State Representative Barbara Boyd (D-Cleveland Heights) to expand insurance coverage for patients with diabetes, helping people get the supplies and education they need to self-manage their diabetes. The vote was 58-38. 

 “An estimated 380,000 Ohioans have diabetes, and many of them are under-insured. This places a massive economic burden on people who are already struggling to make ends meet,” said Rep. Boyd. “Residents of this state deserve to have insurance coverage that provides benefits for diabetes equipment, supplies and medication. They should not have to choose between paying for food and treatment.”

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Volume 2, Issue 12, Posted 1:35 PM, 12.08.2009

Celebrate the holidays with sparkling wine

With the holidays here, it’s time to enjoy some sparkling wine at celebrations with friends and family. If “real” Champagne (from the Champagne region of France) is out of your budget this year, there are lots of good alternatives at reasonable prices.

Sparkling wines are made all over the world and in many different styles. Unfortunately, the shelves include some less-than-stellar ones that are, for my tastes, industrial swill.

Now, if you happen to like Korbel or Martini & Rossi, more power to you. Everyone’s taste is different. If however, you are looking to step it up a bit, without hurting your wallet too badly, here are a couple of my


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Volume 2, Issue 12, Posted 3:28 PM, 11.19.2009

The Heights Observer gets around

Annalena Weissman of Cleveland Heights a sixth grader at Ruffing Montessori catches up on the news from home while visiting the Giants Causeway at County Antrim, Northern Ireland, UK.

Heights Observer writer Tom Woodworth shares the Heights Observer vibe with Paris, France.

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Volume 2, Issue 9, Posted 1:35 PM, 08.24.2009

Where to find information for Heights area election races

An especially interesting election season is coming up in Cleveland Heights and University Heights. All of the local races will be contested.

Races include:

·  Cleveland Heights City Council: Four seats with three incumbents up for reelection.

·  University Heights City Council: Three seats, two incumbents up for reelection.

·  University Heights Mayor: With longtime Mayor Beryl Rothschild stepping down, this race is complicated by a city charter reform issue that could change the character of the mayor’s job.

·  Cleveland Heights–University Heights Board of Education: Three seats, two incumbents up for reelection.

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Volume 2, Issue 9, Posted 10:43 PM, 08.24.2009

La Cave du Vin, A local treat for wine lovers

The Heights wine scene is fortunate to have several wine bars. The oldest is La Cave du Vin on the corner of Coventry and Euclid Heights. It offers an assortment of wine and beer from around the world, and a limited food menu. Many wines are available by the taste, glass or bottle; others only by the bottle.

I began with a glass of 2005 Laurenz Gruner Veltliner from Austria. The wine was crisp and delicious with flavors of minerals, lime and a pinch of white pepper. I tasted three wines from Portugal, each a healthy 2-ounce pour. The 2006 Urban, made from a Spanish Tempranillo grape, was luscious and full bodied with complex cherry fruit. The Irreverante, made from Touriga Nacional grapes grown by a co-op in Portugal, is light and easy to drink. Its bright acidity goes well with food. The last, Aliança Terra Boa Old Vines, unfortunately, came from an off bottle, but I was not charged for it.

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Volume 2, Issue 8, Posted 11:40 AM, 07.21.2009

Cross Number Puzzle

Our April 09 issue contained a Cleveland Heights crossword puzzle which was enjoyed by many. 

Mr Robert Haas enjoyed the first puzzle so much, he created a different kind of puzzle for your intellectual pleasure.

Feel free to print out and try the puzzle for yourself here.

The solution can be found here.




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Volume 2, Issue 8, Posted 11:09 AM, 08.05.2009

Shop local: buy Ohio wines

Some very nice wines are made right here — in our own backyard. Ohio winemakers deserve our support as much as our local merchants and farmers. Here are three Rieslings that are great on their own, before a meal, or with lighter summer fare.

Ferrante (Harpersfield, Ohio) 2007 Golden Bunches Dry Riesling at $13 is one of the best wines being produced in the state. Last winter, when I served as a judge for a competition of the best Michigan and Ohio wines, this was one of the top wines! It is so good that you don’t need to qualify that statement by saying "for an Ohio wine." It has plenty of fruit and complexity. The wine goes well with chicken, fish or vegetarian dishes. It is not bone dry and its only sweetness comes from the ripeness of the fruit. I bought my bottle at Heinen’s in University Heights.

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Volume 2, Issue 7, Posted 1:40 PM, 06.23.2009

In Memoriam: Steven Witser, Cleveland Orchestra trombonist and Cleveland Heights resident

The Cleveland Orchestra notes with sadness the death of former Orchestra member Steven Witser, who died last week from a heart attack at his home in Pasadena. He was 48 years old. 

A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, Witser was appointed to The Cleveland Orchestra in 1989 by Christoph von Dohnányi. He served as Assistant Principal Trombone (1989-2007), Assistant Orchestra Personnel Manager (1994-2007), and Acting Principal Trombone (2003-04 and 2005-07). He was also active in the Blossom Festival Band and Orchestra. While in Cleveland, Steve was a member of the faculty at the Cleveland Institute of Music. He performed in the Center City Brass Quintet, High Anxiety Bones, and Myriad. A California native, he became principal trombone of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2007. 

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Volume 2, Issue 6, Posted 4:10 PM, 06.04.2009

Red and white at Dave’s Market complement summer dining

Last week, while shopping at Severance Town Center, I walked into Dave’s Market to meander through the wine department. They have a large variety of wines at very affordable prices. The store is cool and the wine display is well maintained. Always on the lookout for new wine finds, I bought these two bottles. Both were very good.

2007 Jekel Vineyards Riesling Monterey $11.79

This dry Riesling is very easy to drink. Warm California temperatures, moderated by the cooling ocean breezes, make Monterey a great place for growing grapes. These climate contrasts add a nice complexity to the wine, which has lovely aromas and flavors of orange and tangerine. This Monterey Riesling will go well with lighter summer fare, such as salads, seafood and poultry.

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Volume 2, Issue 6, Posted 10:40 AM, 05.19.2009

Leaving them in stitches

It’s been 15 years since Barb Seidel opened the doors to her home sewing studio in Cleveland Heights and began teaching local kids a unique set of skills. An accomplished seamstress with a background in art education, Seidel combined her passions for teaching and sewing to create a successful series of after-school and summer classes for kids from ages 8 to 18.

Today, her simple studio is equipped with modern machines and a variety of supplies, giving students everything they need to learn to sew. Ever-committed to personal attention and fun, Seidel’s classes are small, encouraging a warm, close-knit learning environment.

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Volume 2, Issue 6, Posted 9:48 AM, 05.18.2009

Personal best for Heights finish in Boston Marathon

Cleveland Heights resident Karen Johnson achieved her personal best time of 3 hours 34 minutes and 40 seconds at the Boston Marathon on April 20.

This was her fifth marathon and her first Boston Marathon.

Karen is a registered dietitian, part-time personal chef and full-time mother of three.

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Volume 2, Issue 5, Posted 9:27 AM, 04.27.2009

Free Observer workshop helps citizens cover the news

“You Too Can Write the News,” a free workshop for citizen journalists, will be held from 9:30 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 16, in Meeting Room A of the Noble Neighborhood Library, 2800 Noble Road.

The workshop, hosted by the Heights Observer and FutureHeights, is the first in a series, and is designed to help people who want to foster discussion of community issues by writing in the Heights Observer or any other citizen journalism project.

Topics covered in the first workshop are vital reporting skills and techniques to make the writing process fast and easy. They are comparable to those taught in college-level journalism courses.
The workshop will be conducted by Bob Rosenbaum, an award-winning reporter, editor and publisher -- at local, regional and national newspapers and magazines -- for nearly 30 years.

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Volume 2, Issue 5, Posted 12:48 PM, 04.23.2009

Miss Gray looking for a home

Miss Gray is searching for her forever home. She is a petite 2 - 3 year old, charcoal gray girl who is up to date with shots, altered and litter box trained. Miss Gray should be in a home without dogs and maybe one or two other low key cats. If interested, please contact The Public Animal Welfare Society of Ohio (PAWS) at 440-442-PAWS or visit www.pawsohio.org.
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Volume 2, Issue 4, Posted 10:21 AM, 03.24.2009

18 years of big fun softball

In the late '80s, Dave Kolb and his wife Alice, both professors in organizational behavior at Case Western Reserve University, were playing softball in a league made up of various university departments. They eventually became uncomfortable with the level of competitiveness in the league. Dave and Alice believed softball was "too much fun to be left to those who do it well." So, in 1991 they took their department team out of the league and started a Sunday morning pick-up sides softball game for a group of diverse individuals to play, free from an emphasis on skills but with a focus on having fun.

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Volume 2, Issue 4, Posted 10:57 PM, 04.08.2009

Cross-racial socializing builds new friendships in the Heights

When was the last time you had someone in your home that did not look like you? That is the challenging question that forms the foundation of the book Racing Across the Lines:  Changing Race Relations Through Friendship by Dr. Deborah L. Plummer. 

As the president and CEO of the YWCA of Greater Cleveland, whose mission it is to eliminate racism and empower women, I was embarrassed to admit my difficulty in answering that question. I work in a very diverse professional world but I socialize and worship in same-race communities. This book challenged me to consider the patterns of my social interactions
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Volume 2, Issue 3, Posted 5:17 PM, 02.02.2009

Splendid value wines

2007 Sielo Blu Pinot Grigio
Alto Adige is an Italian province near the Austrian border and home to this delicious white wine. The wineries of northern Italy turn out some of the best white wines taking advantage of mountain air and soils.  This wine delivers a crisp and fruit-filled aroma (think peaches and green apples). It sees no oak when being made allowing the natural vibrancy to remain.  It has a lush juicy texture that you rarely find in wines at this price.  It would be a terrific match with sea food or pastas with a cream or cheese sauce. At 12.5 percent alcohol, it would work great on its own or with some cheeses too. I purchased it on sale at Heinen’s for $10. 
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Volume 2, Issue 2, Posted 10:41 AM, 01.21.2009

Joe the Coupon Guy teaches Heights residents how to save in hard times

Heights residents are feeling the recession this winter as surely as the cold. Many wonder how to keep their budgets on track as expenses rise. Joe Daugirdas, also known as The Coupon Guy, has tips to share.

For starters, there are many sources of coupons. The Sunday Plain Dealer and the Heights edition of the Sun News have coupons nearly every week. The Cleveland Heights Main Library at Lee Road even has a coupon swap area, available to  all.

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Volume 2, Issue 2, Posted 2:04 PM, 02.03.2009