It was a good year for us. We have many people to thank for all the activities and events that we attended in 2016. This blog post includes our year-end thank-you tweets, and the list of all our 2016 blog posts.
As we have done for the past two years, we have created this blog post to remind us of the fun we had this year, and to show our appreciation. There are many people/organizations that we did not have a chance to mention -- to you all, we want to also say thank you!
We had a such a great time at University Circle's 23rd Annual Holiday CircleFest on Sunday, December 4, 2016, that we wanted to share our photos and tweets/retweets of the day to thank all the sponsoring organizations. Unfortunately, Julie only was able to attend the early activities, since she had a choir performance, but Stuart stayed to the very end of the evening activities.
One of the great things about the day is the people who work at the sponsoring organizations, who warmly welcome and talk to visitors. Stuart wants to give a shout-out to the people he met during the day. Their actions show how to effectively engage visitors to University Circle.
I was very impressed with the Flashstarts 2016 Accelerator Class. At the November 30, 2016, Flashstarts Demo Day, the startup founders made their presentations, after which I had a chance to talk to them. I also truly enjoyed meeting other new people and reconnecting to the people I knew who attended this event at The City Club.
It all started when I received an email from Michael Christoff, who is one of the members of the PechaKucha Night Cleveland leadership team. He wrote that he was inviting me to a special first-time-ever PechaKucha Night Cleveland Past Presenters Happy Hour. This would be an event where the 250+ PechaKucha Night Cleveland presenters from the past eight years would be invited.
Although Julie and I have written blog posts about PechaKucha Night Cleveland and attended many of their events, I had never done a PechaKucha talk myself. I was extremely honored to be invited to this closed event for people whose presentations I greatly admired. It meant a lot to me.
As a way of saying thank you to PlayhouseSquare and Cleveland Play House for Holidazzle, and to Downtown Cleveland Alliance, Cleveland Public Library, and Cleveland Public Square for Cleveland Winterfest 2016, we have gathered our photos and tweets from the day. We enjoy these great events every year.
We also want to mention the role that the Cleveland Foundation is taking this year with the new Cleveland Public Square. The foundation is supporting a winter skating program and the year-round Cleveland Foundation Centennial Plaza.
Two months before the Creative Fusion Spectacular, on Saturday, September 17, 2016, my wife, Julie, and I attended an art event of The Cleveland Foundation's Creative Fusion program. There we saw three new Cleveland murals being created as we watched, near Transformer Station in Hingetown.
Then, when I heard that The Cleveland Foundation had arranged with Ohio City Incorporated to have their Creative Fusion Spectacular on Saturday, November 19, 2016, I knew I wanted to attend to take a special tour of the finished neighborhood murals, and see the temporary Creative Fusion Gallery at 2529 Detroit Avenue, Cleveland.
This year, it was fun that the Akron Mini Maker Faire was held on November 12, 1016, since this was the week after the Cleveland Mini Maker Faire. This made November 2016 the Maker month in Northeast Ohio!
Today, November 19, 2016, the third Saturday of this month, seems like an appropriate day to formally announce that I will not be running the Web Development Special Interest Group (Web Development SIG -- WebSIGCleveland.org) any longer. I chose today to announce this because the Web Development SIG has met on the third Saturday of most months for the last 10 years.
The main purpose of posting this today is to thank the many presenters who have made the Web Development SIG a success. You will see some of their names listed in historical content below. Thank you to those who have made presentations during my tenure -- January 21, 2006 to March 9, 2016 -- and to those who worked with my predecessors. I truly will miss learning from you.
The 4th Annual Cleveland Mini Maker Faire took place on Saturday, November 5, 2016, and we have attended three out of the four. It was a day for creative people to share their passion with others.
We felt honored that the Executive Director/CEO of the Cleveland Public Library, Felton Thomas, Jr., greeted us by name as we entered the library, and invited us to explore this special Maker event.
We were looking forward to the November 4, 2016, PechaKucha Night Akron Volume 5. From past experience, we knew that PechaKucha Night events were always interesting, and because Stuart had heard of The Bit Factory, but had never visited it.
We were rewarded by our attendance at PechaKucha Night Akron Volume 5 with great talks, interesting location -- The Bit Factory -- and Akron Soul Train art.
A year ago, we were invited via Twitter to go on the final CircleTrek Walking Tour of University Circle for 2015. We really wanted to go, but unfortunately we had a conflict.
We have been very busy in 2016, and it feels like suddenly it is one year later. Luckily, we saw a tweet announcing the "...final FREE #CircleTrek guided walking tour of the season," and Julie signed us up to attend!
It was a brisk morning on Saturday, October 22, 2016, when we found ourselves with a group of other people interested in learning about our city's University Circle. As we were on the tour, we kept finding personal and family connections. This made the tour more interesting to us, as we personally related to the history and current developments of Cleveland's University Circle.
We had a great time at the Wednesday, October 19, 2016, Cleveland Museum of Natural History's Think & Drink with the Extinct, so we wanted to share our photos and tweets from the evening. The theme for the night was "Wildlife," which Stuart knew would be of special interest to Julie. It is always fun to be able to get close to the animals at the museum.
Like many of our adventures, it all started with a tweet!
Through this tweet, we learned about and decided to attend the Akron Art Prize Finale Reception on Saturday, October 1, 2016. We enjoyed seeing all the Akron Art Prize entries first at Summit Artspace, and then attending the awards reception at the Akron Art Museum.
We had such a good time and were so impressed with the artwork, that we wanted to share our photos and tweets/retweets from the event.
I want to begin with a BIG thank-you to BVU Director of Communications and Technology Melanie Meyer for inviting me to attend the inaugural BVU Ohio Nonprofit Technology & Communications Summit on Friday, September 30, 2016, as their guest representing the good work of Cleveland GiveCamp.
The mission of BVU: The Center for Nonprofit Excellence "is to promote business volunteerism and foster excellence in nonprofit organizations." This has led Melanie and me to explore how Cleveland GiveCamp can reach out to the nonprofits served by BVU. As a provider of free tech solutions to Cleveland and Akron area nonprofits, it seemed logical that Cleveland GiveCamp be present at BVU's first tech summit. Cleveland GiveCamp has the largest number of tech volunteers of any of the nation's other GiveCamps.
Thank you to the Cleveland Young Professional Senate, the Cleveland Foundation, and The City Club of Cleveland for the Greater Cleveland Caucus events that took place in 2016. I think this type of activity is very important to our community as a starting point for making positive change and plans for the future.
After attending the final Greater Cleveland Caucus event for 2016, I decided to write this blog post to:
- Thank the organizers
- Capture some of the information shared about this final event
- Encourage people to learn about the Greater Cleveland Caucus by reading my past blog posts and related materials
The 2016 IngenuityFest weekend took place on Friday, September 23rd, through Sunday, September 25th. This is the fifth annual blog post I have written about IngenuityFest, plus I have written about other Ingenuity Cleveland-sponsored events.
Every year, I try to live the full IngenuityFest experience by attending all three days and talking to as many exhibitors as possible. It was really great this year to reconnect with some of the artists and techies I met in previous years, and get to know some tech people that I had read about online, but had not met in person. IngenuityFest is like an annual reunion of creative people in Cleveland!
Every year, we visit and write a blog post about the Cleveland Museum of Art's Chalk Festival. It is one of our favorite events in our community. This year, we also visited other art events on the same weekend, so we included our @sos_jr tweets with photos of these events as well. Enjoy!
We think that the Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation "Take a Hike" Cleveland tours are the greatest! We recently went on the Warehouse District Tour, in 2015 attended the Gateway District Tour, and have written blog posts in 2014 about the Playhouse Square Tour and Canal Basin Park in the Flats Tour.
Since we did not have time to write a blog post about the tour we did last year, we decided to include our @sos_jr tweets about @GatewayCLE tours from both 2015 and 2016 in this blog post. It is our way to share the experience, and more importantly, to thank the sponsors and partners for these great tours.
At the start of the week of August 15, 2016, we were prepared to write a blog post about how lucky we are in Cleveland to have PechaKucha Night Cleveland (@PKNCLE), which was coming up on Friday, August 19th. As the week progressed, we realized that, starting on Wednesday, we were going to have the opportunity to attend five consecutive free creative arts events! All of these events deserved at least a special mention and a thank-you, while some even warranted a full blog post.
Thus, this blog post has morphed into something different. While focused on PechaKucha Night Cleveland, it will also include mention of the other free creative events, and an additional inaugural arts event. This is our way to publicly thank the following organizations for their work to provide these free arts events:
The Mission of Cleveland GiveCamp is to pair creative and technology talent with nonprofits in need.
Cleveland GiveCamp Weekend on July 29-31, 2016, marked the seventh year of serving nonprofits from the Cleveland and Akron areas. I am fortunate to to be part of Cleveland GiveCamp every year.
Cleveland continues to have many creative people volunteering (over 225 registered for 2016). It is believed that Cleveland has the largest GiveCamp in the nation. It is exciting that again this year there were so many volunteers that the tech volunteer tickets sold out, and a waiting list had to be started.
Another month, another BIG 2016 event where Cleveland shines -- The July 18-21, 2016, Republican National Convention!
July is the third consecutive month in 2016 where Cleveland had a huge event that reflected positively on our area.
While I did not attend the actual Republican National Convention, which was directed to out-of-state convention delegates visiting Cleveland, I did attend related events that engaged many local people and visitors.
With the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame offering free admission, the unveiling of the new Cleveland Public Square, and special programing by the great cultural institutions of both North Coast Harbor and University Circle, there was an amazing amount of activity crammed into four days.
Here it is...
When Stuart saw this headline in a Cleveland Scene article on March 11, 2016, we knew we had to be there! Our first full blog post was about a tour of NASA Glenn Research Center as part of a Cleveland NASA Tweetup in 2012. We were excited to go back for another tour!
We attended the NASA Glenn Research Center 75th Anniversary Open House at Lewis Field on May 21 and 22, 2016. There was so much to see that the two days just left us wanting to see and learn more.
On Saturday, May 14, 2016, the Cleveland Young Professional Senate held their fourth annual YPCLE: Young Professional Civic Leadership and Empowerment Conference at The City Club of Cleveland. This year, it was entitled YPCLE: The Millennial Caucus, and was part of the Greater Cleveland Caucus Series. This series is the result of a partnership between the Cleveland Young Professional Senate, the Cleveland Foundation, The City Club of Cleveland, and others.
I am so glad that I was able to attend this event, and pleased that some college students who I invited also attended. I look forward to learning how the ideas developed at the caucus will be become an action plan for our community.
My goal for this blog post is:
to give those who did not attend information on what occurred
to create a public repository for some of the information I gathered in relation to the event
to remind us of the work yet to be done
We were excited to learn that Earth Day Coalition's EarthFest 2016 would take place on April 17th, the Sunday before Earth Day 2016 (April 22nd). We had a great time last year at EarthFest 2015, and were looking forward to attending again this year!
What made it even more fun this year is that while we were promoting the event on Twitter via @sos_jr, we ended up winning tickets from @GCRTA to attend the event!
Thank you, Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority - RTA!
I have attended the grand opening of the Cleveland Public Library TechCentral MakerSpace. The technology center staff at the Akron Public Library gave me a tour during the Akron Maker Faire. Now, I am pleased to be able to write about the Cuyahoga County Public Library's new Innovation Center at their Garfield Heights Branch. I was fortunate to be part of a special orientation tour given to members of the Cleveland Digital Publishing Users Group (CDPUG) for their March 31, 2016, meeting.
It was an evening of excitement and anticipation!! The announcement of the 2016-2017 KeyBank Broadway Series was a Broadway production itself!
Clevelanders have come to expect PlayhouseSquare and partner organizations to provide great theatre. We think that Cleveland theatergoers who have never attended the 2016-2017 KeyBank Broadway Series Announcement Celebration would be happily surprised by the high level entertainment and engagement of the launch. It is not a simple announcement of the upcoming season, but instead a very entertaining production with musical guests and interesting interviews with facts about the upcoming season's Broadway shows and about PlayhouseSquare.
The announcement of each show was accompanied by a special surprise. PlayhouseSquare presented the evening as a Cleveland event, not just a theatre event, to encourage pride in our city.
The Saturday, March 12, 2016, inaugural Greater Cleveland Caucus: A Town Hall Meeting on Community Solutions engaged over 400 attendees from throughout Greater Cleveland to spend their Saturday morning in serious dialogue about key community issues. In addition, representatives from more than 70 nonprofit organizations staffed informational booths before the caucus started, and then joined the attendees in brainstorming priorities within eight “caucus areas.”
I want to start by thanking the Greater Cleveland Caucus Series partners for this 2016 initiative. I hope that the Caucus Series, and their related events (such as debate watch parties), provides structure for positive outcomes for Cleveland's future, and acts as a catalyst to involve more Greater Cleveland citizens in that future.
UPDATE -- MAY 9, 2016: Videos of the Fred Talks speeches from the March 12 Greater Cleveland Caucus Town Hall have now been added to this blog post!
Like last year, I want to start by thanking my great co-writer and wife, Julie Smith! I always enjoy sharing the journey with her.
It brings me joy to look at the blog posts we did this past year -- great memories of fun times, plus the anticipation of a new year full of possibilities!Anchor
Since we have enjoyed Brite Winter for several years now, we are posting our @sos_jr tweets and photos/videos as our way to thank and congratulate the organizers of this unique outdoor winter event in Cleveland.
We visited Brite Winter 2016 during the evening of February 20, 2016, but the full event went from 3:00 p.m. until 2:00 a.m. on the West Bank of the Flats. We did not get to see everything, so be sure to look at some of the tweets we shared from others.
Having seen the incredible ice sculptures last year, we made it a point to attend the second annual Cleveland's North Coast Harbor Ice Fest.
We are posting our @sos_jr tweets and photos/videos from Cleveland's Ice Fest at North Coast Harbor here as our way to thank the organizers.
The Ice Fest was located between the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and the Great Lakes Science Center. The Cleveland Ice Fest at North Coast Harbor is a great event -- worth taking the time to visit!
PechaKucha Night Cleveland is always a good time, so I want to share with you my photos and tweets from PechaKucha Night Cleveland Volume 27. It took place at the Music Box Supper Club on February 18, 2016.
I don't know if it is possible to capture the full atmosphere of the evening in a blog post. I do hope it will encourage you to go in person to a future event to truly experience it live!
I was very fortunate to see on Twitter an announcement about a very interesting panel discussion. On Tuesday, February 9, 2016, I attended the discussion about recent developments on, and potential future plans for Cleveland's lakefront and riverfront.
By arriving early at Lakewood Public Library, I was able to get a good seat for this function, which soon became a standing-room-only event!
Even though I had heard about most of the projects separately, it was exciting for me to hear about all of them at one gathering! It was great to hear directly from these panel members, who are intimately involved with these projects.
Akron creatives from diverse disciplines present their work in a unique format -- 20 slides of 20 seconds each.
If you have never attended a PechaKucha event at any of the over 800 cities around the world, we strongly suggest you do so. We were very impressed with the second PechaKucha Night Akron. We had already written blog posts about two of the presenters, so it was great to get updated on their current work, and learn about exciting developments from the other presenters.
On New Year's Eve 2015, I decided to continue the tradition that I started last year, by creating thank-you tweets. I have shared these thank-you tweets (and related tweets/retweets) in this blog post to thank the individuals and organizations mentioned, for adding value to my life in 2015, and to remind me of the fun times I had in 2015. Thank you!
I have always enjoyed reading Janet Cho's #SocialMedia Tips articles, so I was honored when she contacted me to be featured in her column.
Although it is a very busy time of the year, and we had visited the Cleveland Museum of Art and University Circle recently, when we heard about the Ohio Blogging Association's University Circle Holiday Night Out, we knew we had to make the time for this special night. We know that we will remember this fun evening for a long time!
The Smiths have a family tradition of driving to GE Lighting's Nela Park two weeks before Christmas to see their annual Christmas lights display. Of particular interest to us is seeing each year at Nela Park the replica of the National Christmas Tree. We also enjoy discovering each year's decorating theme.
This year, the Nela Park holiday lights display featured Cleveland landmarks. Therefore, we decided to not only see GE Lighting's Nela Park, but also to see the holiday lighting at the landmarks themselves.
On October 27, 2015, we were very fortunate to be invited to attend Case Western Reserve University's think[box] Thinkapalooza!
Even before the new think[box] space opened, we had heard about how great it was going to be. Thinkapalooza was part of the grand opening of Case Western Reserve University think[box]'s new space for promoting innovation and entrepreneurial enterprises. Its new name is the Larry Sears and Sally Zlotnick Sears think[box] and it is located in the Richey Mixon Building. It is one of the largest centers of its kind for an academic institution.
think[box] is a resource that will first focus on the students, faculty, and staff of the university, but will also be open to others in the surrounding community.
The Smith family has a tradition of going to Pumpkinville each fall. This year, on Sunday, October 25, 2015, Julie and Stuart also went to Holden Arboretum after visiting Pumpkinville. We decided to write a blog post, since this year, there were some special situations to note.
Since it was Pumpkinville's 50th anniversary year, we wanted to include a few of our photos to congratulate them. 50 years in business is worth noting! Pumpkinville is located in Kirtland, Ohio.
We also had reasons to make special note about our fall visit to Holden Arboretum. We were especially excited about experiencing the new Murch Canopy Walk and Kalberer Emergent Tower. They had just opened on September 6, 2015, and they were incredible!
We want to take this opportunity to congratulate the Cleveland Play House on their centennial, and for earning the 2015 Regional Theatre Tony Award!
During the 2014/2015 program year for Cleveland Museum of Natural History, I remembered hearing about Think & Drink with the Extinct events. Since I have attended astronomy programs and other public events at the museum, I was intrigued, and started promoting the events in my @sos_jr tweets. Promoting events/meetings is the reason I starting using Twitter.
I did not think that it would take until Fall 2015 to finally have a night that I could attend. I decided to share my photos and tweets from the evening to thank the organizers of the event, and to encourage others to attend. I will not attempt to fully express what the event is like -- it is something you need to experience for yourself -- but I will say that if you like having access to extremely bright people from whom you can learn, then you should attend.
On October 21, 2015, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History (@goCMNH) had their monthly Think & Drink with the Extinct (#ThinkandDrink). The evening's theme was "Paleontology - Fossils and Ferments." October 21, 2015, just happened to be Back to the Future Day -- somehow it seemed right to be in a museum to celebrate.
I have been writing blog posts about Ingenuity Cleveland's IngenuityFest since 2012, and attending long before that. IngenuityFest is the perfect marriage of my interests in arts and technology.
I went to all three days, October 2-4, of IngenuityFest 2015. I am sharing my photos and tweets from the weekend in this blog post as my way of thanking all the presenters. I made a point of talking to many artists in their installations, and local tech leaders at their booths. I can't include everyone I spoke to, but will mention a few in this post.
I have also included my tweets from the inaugural Hingetown Hoedown, which took place Saturday night. It was incredible to see so many people attend this first-time event!
On Tuesday, October 20, 2015, we had a great time attending the Ohio Blogging Association's Cleveland Bloggers Dinner at Sterle's Country House.
While we enjoyed the food, and the old-world ambience of the restaurant, the main reason we attended was to interact with fellow Cleveland Bloggers! If you are a blogger, we highly recommend you attend future Ohio Blogging Association events.
I was fortunate to have Kevin Lockett present a talk entitled So You Think You Know Podcasting at my October 17, 2015, WebSigCleveland.org meeting. Kevin's podcasting talk also provided resources and creative ideas beyond podcasting, which is why I decided to gather my notes, tweets, and Kevin's slides, and create this blog post.
My notes on the presentation are included in my @sos_jr tweets I did during the meeting, so I have embedded them in this blog post.
This is the seventh blog post I have written about a Cleveland.com TweetUp, and my wife, Julie, and I have attended many more. They are always about having fun in Cleveland while making new friends and meeting old Tweetup friends. I saw some people I had not seen in a while, so it was great to reconnect.
Like the February 5, 2015, Corner Alley - Uptown TweetUp, the September 24, 2015, Cleveland TweetUp at the The Big Bang Cleveland was about welcoming a new entertainment venue to Cleveland. It was again hosted by Kristel Hartshorn and Troy Smith. I suggest you follow them on Twitter, and read their Cleveland.com articles, since they write about Cleveland entertainment.
Every year, we enjoy viewing the artwork at the Chalk Festival at the Cleveland Museum of Art. As in 2014, Stuart was glad he was able to participate by adding his chalk drawing to the weekend display.
The weather was beautiful, and there was a huge turnout of Cleveland artists. Please read on to learn about an act of kindness and generosity by some children at the festival.
I am a person who likes to attend a lot of events, but this day was unusual even for me! I got up at 6:00 a.m. to prepare for the day, and did not get home until late at night.
The reason for sharing my day with you, the reader, is twofold:
I learned about a lot of interesting things.
I want to thank everyone that made the day's events a grand success. Most of the people involved are donating their time to make our community better.
Here is how I spent my day:
My weekend plans went from nothing planned to really fun when I learned about two free events via Twitter.
I had not planned on writing this blog post about the weekend. I even told people I talked to at the events that I was not going to write about the weekend. However...
After the weekend was over, I decided I wanted to capture the information I learned about local adventures. I also wanted to thank NEO Cycle and the Cleveland Pops for the good time.
The Eastside Greenway seeks to connect the east side of Cleveland with 18 Greater Cleveland municipalities through a unified trail network that will link neighborhoods to employment centers, transit and existing green spaces. The communities within the study area include East Cleveland, Cleveland Heights, Shaker Heights, Beachwood, Pepper Pike, University Heights, Richmond Heights, Highland Heights, Highland Hills, North Randall, Mayfield Heights, Mayfield Village, Euclid, South Euclid, Lyndhurst, Bratenahl, Orange Village and Warrensville Heights and eastern portions of Cleveland.
The Eastside Greenway project is a great idea, but in some ways I feel that it might be too early to write about it. Today it is just a great idea -- a concept for the future. I look forward to writing again about how the work of today's leaders made a difference in the quality of life.
On the evening of Tuesday, September 8, 2015, we knew we both needed to be on the second floor of the Terminal Tower. A grand opening was scheduled. The event by itself could have been just another gathering of talented people that we often attend in Cleveland, but what was opening represented much more -- the foundation for future Cleveland entrepreneurship in a centralized hub connecting startups to critical resources.
It was fascinating to meet and learn about the Flashstarts 2015 Accelerator Class at the Flashstarts' Demo Day, Wednesday, August 19, 2015 at House of Blues Cleveland. I find it very enjoyable to engage in conversation with such creative Cleveland entrepreneurs.
Biomimetics or biomimicry is the imitation of the models, systems, and elements of nature for the purpose of solving complex human problems.
The Mission of Cleveland GiveCamp is to pair creative and technology talent with nonprofits in need.
The tech and design volunteers at Cleveland GiveCamp 2015 really "wowed" the nonprofit partners served this year with some incredible projects. The many tweets I embedded in this blog really give a flavor of the weekend. I recommend scanning through them and reading those that pique your interest.
I have been fortunate to be able to attend all six Cleveland GiveCamp weekends! Cleveland GiveCamp is believed to be the largest in the United States. Read on to learn how so many volunteers come together to make a huge difference in our community.
When we got to EarthFest 2015 on Sunday, April 19th, things were hopping!
We arrived in the afternoon, and thus missed the opening ceremony. After seeing the large number of displays, we wished we had come sooner. Even though the EarthFest was now being held at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds, we did not know that it would be so big. We did not think that so many of the fairground buildings would be used. We were pleased to see so many people attending -- it was quite a crowd! -- and so many participating environmental organizations.
We were thrilled when the Digital Communications Manager Stephanie Anderson from PlayhouseSquare invited us to their big event announcing the 2015-2016 KeyBank Broadway Series! We have been attending many of the shows and events at the many theatres and surrounding venues of PlayhouseSquare, but have never attended a PlayhouseSquare Broadway Launch Party. We already knew that Cleveland's PlayhouseSquare is the second largest theater venue in the United States, but this evening we learned how Cleveland is the #1 city for touring Broadway shows, with 32,000 season ticket holders!
2012 to 2015!!!
First and foremost, I want to begin by thanking my great co-writer and wife, Julie Smith! I enjoy sharing the journey with her.
When I look at the titles and images associated with the blog posts from this past year, I get really excited. They not only bring back memories of all the enjoyable things we did this past year, but also make me anticipate the potential of the coming year!