Cleveland Foundation

It Wasn't Really That Cold (Or Was It?): Brite Winter 2024 #Brite2024

It Wasn't Really That Cold (Or Was It?): Brite Winter 2024 #Brite2024

A BIG thank-you to the Brite Winter leadership team, volunteers, sponsors/partners, and Ingenuity Cleveland Ingeneers for a great #Brite2024! Some of my family visited the event earlier in the day on Saturday, February 24, 2024. They reported that they had a great time seeing people they knew at the event, but said I should be prepared for the cold. I had also seen on Brite Winter's Facebook page the official #FluriForecast from Cleveland 19 News Chief Meteorologist Jason Nicholas -- it would be cold. When I arrived just before 8:00 pm, I heard several people comment on the cold.

Brite Winter Vision Statement: ". . . to build community while helping us embrace the cold winter months. . . . We embrace our core values of positivity, community, creativity, artistic excellence, and accessibility." Remembering to embrace the cold in a positive manner, and acknowledging that it was not really that cold for winter in Cleveland -- come on folks, it is a full 11 degrees warmer than Brite Winter 2014 -- I dressed for the weather and a great time at Brite Winter 2024!

I enjoyed the musical performances Saturday night! I think many people attending that night learned that it is not cold out in winter in Cleveland on a February night if you keep dancing the night away!

Congratulations, Brite Winter, on a successful event for your 15th incredible year. I look forward to attending your 16th year in 2025, and more beyond.

Blog Date

Grateful for IngenuityFest 2023: Biologies & Geologies

The day after attending IngenuityFest 2023: Biologies & Geologies (September 22 & 23, 2023), I left on a trip. Now that I have returned, I want to publicly express here how grateful I am to Ingenuity Cleveland leadership and their community partners for this year's gathering of creative people in Cleveland.

My son, Mike, and I enjoyed exploring the artistically lit caverns of Ingenuity Cleveland's 300,000-square-foot Hamilton Collaborative on the evening of Friday, September 22, 2023. There we found music, art, and much more!!

Then, on Saturday, September 23, 2023, Mike and I returned with our whole family to explore more. In addition to seeing more of the exhibitions I enjoyed Friday night, I spent time talking to people at the community organization booths in the upper part of the building. There is where I learned about the latest new happenings in Cleveland.

Since its founding in 2004, IngenuityFest has featured both technology and art. These are both areas that interest me greatly, so it is no surprise that I have been writing about IngenuityFest from the first year I started writing my blog in 2012.

I have been writing about IngenuityFest since 2012, but I have been taking my family to this great event for even longer. I look forward to attending again next year!

Blog Date

Community Celebration 2023: Cleveland Foundation New Beginnings

Community Celebration 2023: Cleveland Foundation New Beginnings

A year ago, I learned about and planned on attending the grand opening of the Cleveland Foundation's new headquarters building in 2023. I had learned that the building was going to be much more than the Foundation's home for their staff to work in -- it will also be a resource for the greater community to use! A new role in the community for the Foundation -- very exciting! I looked forward to the opening and to being part of the community celebration.

Next, in May 2023, it was announced that in addition to the new beginning with a new building, there would be a change in Cleveland Foundation professional leadership -- President & CEO Ronn Richard's retirement would lead to the installation of Lillian Kuri as the new leader of the Foundation on August 1, 2023.

Finally, as I attended the Cleveland Foundation 2023 Annual Meeting and open house/tour, I learned about more new beginnings -- a second building!!

In this blog post, I will share announcements that were made before the 2023 Annual Meeting and related festivities, and then write about my experiences at the following celebrations:

I learned about another reason to celebrate in the near future:

2023 Cleveland Foundation Annual Meeting

Blog Date

Back Again - Enjoying Creativity at IngenuityFest 2022

IngenuityFest 2022 - Expo: Ingenuity

I normally spend three full days at the annual IngenuityFest Weekend, but family commitments only allowed me to visit on Saturday, September 24, 2022, for three hours in the evening. I was so impressed with the event, I want to share in this blog post the photos/videos that I and others shared about the weekend. After 2020's IngenuityFest being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and last year being an outdoor event at the Cleveland Metroparks, it was good to be back at a more traditional IngenuityFest Weekend of creativity at the Hamilton Collaborative location.

I also want to mention that one of the highlights, in addition to the incredible displays and performances, was reconnecting with people that I have not seen in person the last few years. It has been a difficult time for many people, and I am grateful to the artists who are IngenuityFest, and the sponsors that support their work.

IngenuityFest 2022 Sponsors

Blog Date

12th Cleveland GiveCamp - 2022 Hybrid - Online and Hyland

Thank you, Hyland, for hosting Cleveland GiveCamp's volunteers, who generously gave of their talent to provide free tech to the Cleveland GiveCamp 2022 Nonprofit Partners!

After missing 2020 and going virtual in 2021 due to COVID-19 safety considerations, at the start of 2022, the Cleveland GiveCamp Steering Committee was open to new possibilities as to what form the free tech solutions would be provided to local nonprofits.

Cleveland GiveCamp 2022 stayed with the weekend format of nonprofit teams and standup progress meetings, but new this year was:

  • the location -- Hyland
  • the month -- August instead of the traditional third Saturday in July
  • offering a hybrid option -- a combination of remote and in-person volunteers, which one nonprofit team utilized

In this blog post, I will:

While the most important activity happens over Cleveland GiveCamp Weekend, when the tech solutions are actually developed for the Nonprofit Partners, Cleveland GiveCamp is a year-round organization plannings and preparing for the weekend of service.

Blog Date

Press - Preview - Party: 2022 FRONT International

Press - Preview - Party: 2022 FRONT International

Dear Stuart,

I am excited to share with you an update and an invitation to celebrate the opening of the second edition of FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art. Prem Krishnamurthy, our FRONT 2022 Artistic Director, has assembled a brilliant exhibition sprawling across 30 venues in Northeast Ohio and featuring a dazzling array of over 100 artists, including art stars like Julie Mehretu, Firelei Baez, Renée Green, Yoshitomo Nara, Jacolby Satterwhite.

Anticipation is high, and the press is calling FRONT one of the must-see art events of the year, along with documenta and the Venice Bienalle.

The title of FRONT 2022, Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows is inspired by a couplet by Langston Hughes, . . .

Our preview days are July 14 and 15, and we would be delighted to have you join artists and art lovers from across the country to share a packed calendar of events and programming. . . .

Laura and I  would be pleased to have you as our guests for an open house brunch at our home from 10:00 to 12:00 on July 15 and 16. . . .

Of course, FRONT runs through October 2, and we would love to see you any time this Summer. I would love to hear your thoughts and impressions.

With warm regards,
Fred Bidwell
Executive Director

I am grateful that Fred Bidwell emailed me an invitation to attend the 2022 FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art preview events. It was great to learn more about, and get an advanced look at some of the venues before “Oh, Gods of Dust and Rainbows” opened to the public on July 16, 2022. It runs through October 2, 2022.

As background, I put together both "Preview Exhibition" and "Personal Prequel" blog posts, which cover my interests and activities relating to FRONT International between the 2018 events and the start of the 2022.

The scope of this second FRONT International is so large that the preview barely gave a nibble of the full banquet of northeast Ohio art that is now available for exploration. As I prepared this blog post, I learned more and more, but also realized that there still is much more to learn. In 2018, my wife and co-blogger, Julie, enjoyed visiting and blogging about many of the venues we visited, and we look forward to exploring the new art at the 2022 venues.

This blog post includes both the two days of preview events and the kickoff block party, plus additional information:

FRONT International 2022 Preview Days - July 14 & 15

Blog Date

My Cleveland Week: Cleveland Foundation > MidTown Murals > USS Cod Party > Irishtown Bend Hike > One World Day

My Cleveland Week: Cleveland Foundation > MidTown Murals > USS Cod Party > Irishtown Bend Hike > One World Day

As I mention in my last blog posts, I have been "delayed" in my normal activities for much of the summer. Well, the week after I published those two blog posts, my activity level increased dramatically due to the large number of events happening in Cleveland the last week of August 2021.

As I wrote on Monday, August 23, 2021, "If you are in #Cleveland and have nothing to do this week, you are just not trying!"

This blog post is an attempt to capture some of the spirit of the events I attended. The one common element of all these events is that I learned about them from following interesting people/organization on Twitter.  I created this blog post to serve as a reminder for me of the fun I had at these events, and I hope it encourages you to go out yourself to learn about the organizations that sponsor these events.

The in-person events included:

In addition to these in-person events that I attended, this was also the week of online events for the 2021 Cleveland Foundation Annual Meeting Week Presented by KeyBank: It Starts With Community.

Blog Date

#Masks4Community - Social Distancing While Volunteering

Shanelle Smith Whigham's photo of Saturday, June 27, 2020, Volunteers

We were pleased when Fox 8 News Producer Rachel Inch approached us to use some of our Facebook photos for their 6:00 pm news story on #Masks4Community on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. Her request made us think about sharing the story of the great work done by the #Masks4Community leaders, partners, donors, and volunteers in one of our "Social Distancing Series" blog posts.

We first learned about #Masks4Community's good work because our @sos_jr twitter account follows (and retweets) @ShanelleLSmith. In addition to #Masks4Community's website --, we also learned more about the program from Steven Litt's article.

In addition to giving out FREE masks, #Masks4Community distributes information about voting and the census in the kits. We are BIG believers in the importance of voting, and know how the census directly impacts the way services are provided in our community. Therefore, we were excited to learn that the #Masks4Community program also supports our belief in the importance of people fulfilling their civic duty!

We signed up to volunteer once a week, starting with the morning shift on Saturday, June 27th. We were not only impressed by the mission of the organization, but also how clearly they spelled out that they followed safety measures for those volunteering (everyone wears masks, washes hands, practices social distancing, and the number of volunteers is limited). We only volunteered because these safety measures are in place.

Shanelle Smith Whigham's photo of Julie and Stuart at #Masks4Community July 11, 2020, Julie and Stuart at #Masks4Community

Blog Date

Third Annual Better World Day - Blockchain for a Better World

Third Annual Better World Day - Blockchain for a Better World

Better World Day is brought to you by Leading Hands Through Technology and Workmen's Circle Educational Center of Ohio. The conference focuses on technology to arm non-profits with the knowledge to continue their fight for a better world.

Blockchain for a Better World
Better World Day

Thursday, October 17, 2019 from 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM (EDT)

Blockchain for a Better World
(How Non-Profits Can Successfully Apply Blockchain)

At our third annual event, we're excited to bring together researchers, technology experts, non-profit leaders and fund-raising professionals to develop innovative solutions that combine technology and compassion to improve our world.

I am grateful that Marc Majers knew of my interest in technology solutions for nonprofits, and thus invited me to this year's Better World Day educational event. This panel discussion and keynote address on how nonprofits can use blockchain technologies took place on October 17, 2019, at the Cuyahoga County Public Library Parma Branch.

On November 11, 2018, I had written a blog post entitled Cleveland Foundation #CtrlAltCLE Convenes: Tech & Digital Equity/Blockchain for Social Good which featured an excellent introduction to blockchain by Cleveland Foundation's Chief of Digital Innovation & Chief Information Officer Leon Wilson. I was excited to learn more from Leon Wilson and the other members of the panel, as well as the keynote presenter.

The purpose of this blog post is to capture some of what I learned, and share it with others.

Blog Date

Celebrating 50 Years of Fond Memories of Euclid Beach Park

Remembering the Sights & Sounds of Euclid Beach Park 2019

On Sunday, September 29, 2019, our family participated for the fifth consecutive year in Euclid Beach Park Now's 15th Annual Remembering the Sights & Sounds of Euclid Beach Park event. This was a special year for us and for this Cleveland tradition for three reasons:

We write our blog posts as our way to thank the great organizations in Cleveland and Akron that bring joy to our lives. If you read our posts, you will see that we are very fortunate!

Celebrating 50 Years of Fond Memories of Euclid Beach Park

Euclid Beach (September 2019 draft) Plan Update

Blog Date