Blog sosAssociates


Brite Winter 2016 - #Brite16

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.


Cleveland's North Coast Harbor Ice Fest 2016

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 Volume 27

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!

Cleveland Waterfront Panel: Is Development Paying Off?

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. 


PechaKucha Night Akron Volume 2

Akron creatives from diverse disciplines present their work in a unique format -- 20 slides of 20 seconds each.

We were excited to spend the evening in Akron at the Akron Civic Theatre, since we had not been to this great venue in years. We attended the second PechaKucha Night Akron on February 5, 2016.

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.

#NewYearsEve #Thank You!

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!


Bloggers Tour - Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse

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!


GE Lighting's Nela Park National Christmas Tree

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. 



Case Western Reserve University's think[box] Thinkapalooza!

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.


Pumpkinville's 50th anniversary year!

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!

Holden Arboretum's new Murch Canopy Walk  Holden Arboretum's new Kalberer Emergent Tower


Cleveland Play House Community Open House

We want to take this opportunity to congratulate the Cleveland Play House on their centennial, and for earning the 2015 Regional Theatre Tony Award!

We were fortunate to be able to attend the Cleveland Play House Community Open House on Saturday, October 24, 2015, which was part of their Centennial Celebration Weekend.

Think & Drink with the Extinct "Paleontology - Fossils and Ferments"

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.

IngenuityFest Weekend 2015!

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.

Cleveland Technology + Art = IngenuityFest Weekend 2015!

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!


Ohio Blogging Association's Cleveland Bloggers Dinner at Sterle's Country House

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.

"So You Think You Know Podcasting"

I was fortunate to have Kevin Lockett present a talk entitled So You Think You Know Podcasting at my October 17, 2015, 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. 

Dueling Pianos Fun! The Big Bang Cleveland

Dueling Pianos! Fun!

This is the seventh blog post I have written about a 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 articles, since they write about Cleveland entertainment.

Web Vulnerability » Akron Maker Faire » Launch League SpaceWalk

September 19, 2015 -- what a day!

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:

Weekend Fun: NEO Cycle & Cleveland Pops

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.

Weekend Fun: NEO Cycle & Cleveland Pops


Eastside Greenway

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.

Just imagine having bike paths that would tie the different eastside communities together! I think it could make a big difference in how the people there will live and interact.


Charles Stack - StartMart Grand Opening

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.

Cleveland StartMart Grand Opening

@Flashstarts Demo Day 2015 - #FSDDay

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.

Flashstarts 2015 Accelerator Class:

  1. Brilliency
  2. Colign
  3. Free-D
  4. Gemma
  5. inTouch
  6. Schedulytics
  7. Science United
  8. Triple Analytics
  9. Virtual Compass
  10. We Can Code IT
  11. Windrush

DXY Tangent: Biomimicry!

Biomimicry! What an interesting topic -- as is expected when you attend one of DXY's Tangent events!

Biomimetics or biomimicry is the imitation of the models, systems, and elements of nature for the purpose of solving complex human problems.

On Tuesday, August 11, 2015, we attended the DXY Tangent entitled: The Things We Mimic...


Earth Day Coalition EarthFest 2015

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.

Ohio Blogging Association's Told CLE Storytelling
When we learned that the April Ohio Blogging Association  event would involve storytelling, we were intrigued. Told CLE is a participatory storytelling organization. We looked forward to attending this special Cleveland bloggers event led by Told CLE founder, Dave Sabol, on Wednesday, April 15, 2015.

PlayhouseSquare 2015-2016 Broadway Launch Party!

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!

Blogiversary: Three!

2012 to 2015!!!

I am celebrating three years of having fun exploring our community and writing about our experiences!

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!

Science After Dark crafts with a light-emitting diode and materials cut with laser engraver
Our photos and tweets give an overview of this Great Lakes Science Center event. When you see us at events around Cleveland, please feel free to ask about the details of this event. We would love to talk you about the fun activities in Greater Cleveland.

LaunchHouse Accelerator Expo (LHXPO) 2015

I had a blast!

On Wednesday, February 11, 2015, LaunchHouse transformed its building into a showcase of experimentation and experience, as the latest LaunchHouse Accelerator companies demonstrated their original product ideas at the LaunchHouse Accelerator Expo (LHXPO).

I use the word "experimentation" because this year, the focus was on hardware products and the science behind them. The active involvement of NASA Glenn Research Center with this year's LaunchHouse Accelerator supported this new level of experimentation.

I also use the word "experience," since attendees could get up close and personal with many of the products by actually trying them out.

Corner Alley - Cleveland TweetUp

It was a fun evening, and I particularly enjoyed meeting new people. I have been to other Cleveland TweetUps, and it seemed like there were more first-time attendees at this one.The great thing about a #CLEtweetup is that you can walk up to strangers, find out you have something in common, and look forward to seeing them again at the next #CLEtweetup.


The Northeast Ohio Software Association is now OHTech!

The new name, OHTech, reflects the change in the composition that has already occurred within the membership of OHTech. No longer is the organization limited by the word "software" in its name. It is a professional association that supports the full gamut of the technology arena, not just software development.

The "OH" reflects a new strategic emphasis -- to grow to be a resource throughout the entire state of Ohio.


February 2015 Status: @FCC and #NetNeutrality

Having heard at the end of January 2015 that Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler had planned on using the February 26, 2015, FCC Open Commission Meeting to vote on the issue of net neutrality, I decided that now was the time to write a third blog post on this issue.

TechPint Cleveland V: Winter Jam

I was fortunate to attend TechPint Cleveland V: Winter Jam on January 22, 2015, at the Beachland Ballroom. As the name implies, this was the fifth TechPint in Cleveland (there have also been Akron TechPints).

As in the past, the interesting location is also part of the draw of the event. Beachland Ballroom allowed for a creative atmosphere. With tickets sales exceeding 300, it was great that the Beachland Ballroom was able to open their back room to accommodate an additional 50 attendees. I heard that TechPint came very close to selling out all 350 tickets -- a big congratulations to the TechPint leadership team!

Codemash 2015 - Part 2

I've been to several Codemash conferences and highly recommend them. This is the Codemash-Part Two blog post. It will include resources from the Friday, January 9, 2015, sessions I attended. Also included are my tweets/retweets from Friday and from after Codemash, plus links to other people's blog posts about Codemash. Please also read the Codemash 2015 - Part 1 of 2 blog post, which includes photos of the entire event.

My goal is to share some of the flavor of the event and some of the useful information developed for the conference. I hope you find these two blog posts interesting, if not useful -- enjoy!

Codemash 2015 - Part 1

I've been to several Codemash conferences and highly recommend them. In this Codemash-Part One blog post, I will share tweets from before and during the first part of Codemash 2015, along with my photos from the entire event. Codemash-Part Two will contain tweets from my last day, and after the event, along with a list of other Codemash blogs. I will also share some of the resources from conference sessions I attended.

My goal is to share some of the flavor of the event and some some of the useful information developed for the conference. There are over 300 tweets/retweets regarding @Codemash. Be sure to take a moment to review them. Some reflect the unique humor that develops when you gather such a large group of creative people together. Other tweets provide links to useful technology resources, and blog posts developed for Codemash 2015.

I enjoy the conference every year -- I am writing this blog post as my way of thanking all the many people who volunteer their time and financial support to make it a success.


Cleveland Foundation Day of Family Fun

After attending six of the Cleveland Foundation's centennial events in 2014, Stuart was disappointed that he would not be available on December 30th for the final event due to work commitments.

Then, unexpectedly, he was given two extra days off from work! This allowed him, on December 29th, to enjoy a day of hiking on the Buckeye Trail in the Cleveland Metroparks and Cuyahoga Valley National Park. On December 30th, he was able to return to both parks and University Circle for Cleveland Foundation's Family Fun Day.

What follows is information about this final centennial event, and our photos/tweets of our activities of the day. Before we share our experiences from this one day, we want to share with you, the reader, Cleveland Foundation's "Enduring Trust" video. Understanding the worldwide importance of the first community foundation is more important than our thank-you message for one day of family fun.

#NewYearsEve #Thx!!!

As we ended 2014, I took some time to review the year. 2014 = good year.

The following are my New Year's Eve thank-you tweets and some other tweets/retweets. I decided to save these in this blog post to remind me of the fun year and as a record of those that I appreciate for adding great value to my life in 2014. There are many more people/organizations that I did not have a chance to mention -- to you all I want to also say thank you!

LeanDog and Arras Keathley Invitation!

I have been to the LeanDog boat many times for tech meetings or for Cleveland GiveCamp-related activities, but when I received my invitation to attend the Arras Keathley and LeanDog boat christening celebration, I knew that this would be different -- that this would be big!

The christening invitation for the Thursday night, October 23, 2014, event indicated that Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson, Arras Keathley President Jim Hickey, and LeanDog President Jon Stahl would all take part in the champagne christening. I also heard that famed Cleveland singer Alex Bevan would be performing. I was excited to hear this, since I had never seen him perform in person.


Akron's October 2014 Mini Maker Faire

Robots! 3-D Printers! Hackers! Mobile Broadcasting! Makers! Astronomy! Circuits! Kites! Make A Telescope! - Akron's October 2014 Mini Maker Faire had all of this and more!

Congratulations to the Akron-Summit County Public Library staff for this year's success! They doubled the attendance this second year of the event, with over 1,500 attendees.

Cleveland Amplify Panel & Tech Town Hall

On Wednesday, October 1, 2014, I was invited to attend two events about the positive things going on with the growth of technology in Northeast Ohio, and the new challenges created. In this blog post, I will share my notes and the related tweets. Since I could not capture all that occurred, I recommend reading the tweets, particularly for the Tech Town Hall event. We had some pretty impressive live tweeters for this Cleveland event.

Cleveland Technology + Art = Ingenuityfest Weekend!

Cleveland Technology + Art = Ingenuityfest Weekend!

Every year, the tribe of people interested in supporting artists and technologists in our community comes together in an annual gathering called Ingenuityfest. 2014 marked the 10th anniversary of this gathering.

My goal is to share a little bit of Ingenuityfest 2014. To truly experience it, though, you must attend this annual Cleveland event.



Visiting Wally Waterdrop - NEORSD Open House

On Saturday, September 27, 2014, despite already having planned to spend the day and evening at the Cleveland IngenuityFest, we added attending the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District Open House and Southerly Wastewater Treatment Plant tour to our day's schedule. The day before the event, we received an email stating that they had over 500 people registered for the tour. We had no idea that so many others would be interested.

Our main interest was twofold. First, we wanted to understand the technology behind how all the wastewater for our region is handled. Secondly, and most importantly, we had already learned about the importance of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District from the Cleveland Foundation Centennial Gift: Weekends on the Water cruise and wanted to learn more.


Cleveland's One World Festival 2014

September 13 and 14, 2014 -- Stuart's second and Julie's first Cleveland's One World Festival. We had such a great time enjoying the international diversity of Cleveland coming together as one community, that we wanted to share our photos and tweets about the day.


OneCommunity's work is interesting and important!

MISSION: OneCommunity is expanding high-speed broadband access and adoption to strengthen Northeast Ohio.  
VISION: Advanced digital capabilities and effective use of technology will help transform the region and establish Northeast Ohio as a national hub for innovation and economic growth.

In this blog post, I write about OneCommunity (formerly OneCleveland) and the exciting things OneCommunity is doing in Cleveland today!


Cleveland Foundation Centennial Gift: Weekends on the Water

Thank you, Cleveland Foundation, for your September 13 & 28, 2014 Centennial Gift: Weekends on the Water!

We are very fortunate to have been among the 6,000 Clevelanders who received free tickets to an educational cruise on Cleveland's largest excursion ship, the Goodtime III. On Saturday, September 13th, we joined a joyful crowd on the docks at the end of East 9th Street near Voinovich Park. A light rain did not dampen the spirits of those waiting to board the ship.


Historic "visit" from Mary Kelley on Canal Basin Park in the Flats "Take A Hike" Tour

This blog post was originally intended to be a short description of a pleasant Sunday morning tour of part of the Flats area of Cleveland. However, as we learned more about Cuyahoga River-related developments, we kept finding additional important facets about which to write.

Merwin's Wharf, the new restaurant developed by the Cleveland Metroparks

Take Action! @FCC and #NetNeutrality

On July 17, 2014, I wrote to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler in response to his call for comments regarding net neutrality.

It is NOW September! The date for submission has been extended to September 15th! Time to take action!

Please read this blog post on how you can take action.


AHA! PechaKucha Night Cleveland VOL 23

We keep hearing from people we talk to that there is so much going on in Cleveland. One of the great ways to learn about what is up-and-coming in our city is by attending a PechaKucha Night Cleveland. All PechaKucha Night Cleveland events are special, but on August 7, 2014, it was combined with other events happening in our community that made it all extra special -- AHA! Cleveland events and Gay Games 9.

We want to share with you Stuart's experiences at PechaKucha Night Cleveland, and both of our experiences with the AHA! Light Up Cleveland installation.

Julie Smith, Kevin F. Smith, Michael N. Smith, Stuart O. Smith, Jr. - @sos_jr


Cleveland GiveCamp 2014 - 5th Year!

The fifth annual Cleveland GiveCamp took place over the weekend of July 18-20, 2014 at LeanDog and Burke Lakefront Airport. In 2010, the first year there was a GiveCamp in Cleveland, our tech and design community set a record for having the largest first-time GiveCamp in the nation. Today, Cleveland GiveCamp (@CleGiveCamp) has grown to be one of the largest (possibly the largest) GiveCamps in the United States.

This blog post will share the involvement of Mike, Kevin and Stuart Smith, plus links to resources shared during the weekend, and links to other blogs about the weekend. We highly recommend reading through the tweets from the event, since they will give you a taste of the weekend. If you have never participated in a GiveCamp, we highly recommend volunteering your talent to help local nonprofits. It is a lot of hard work, and more fun than you would imagine.

Comment to @FCC on #NetNeutrality

The INITIAL public comment period to the FCC has been extended to Friday, July 18, 2014. If you have not submitted your comment yet, and it is before July 19th -- what are you waiting for?

If you are reading this blog after Friday, July 18th, then I recommend following the @FCC, @TomWheelerFCC, and @GigiBSohnFCC on Twitter, and watching the website for details. There will be opportunities for additional comments up to September 10, 2014, per...


Cleveland Indians Social Suite

Thank you, Cleveland Indians, for inviting us to watch the May 30, 2014, game against the Colorado Rockies from the Indians Social Suite. We had a great time watching the Tribe win the game with a score of 5 to 2!

We enjoyed a fantastic view of the game from the Social Suite, and as a special treat, watched a terrific post-game fireworks show from the visitors dugout! Our photos and videos will give you a sense of the fun of the evening.


Centennial Gift: Cleveland Foundation Day on Wade Oval

Even though we are very familiar with the institutions surrounding Wade Oval, it was great to visit them again as guests of The Cleveland Foundation.

In addition to sharing our photos and videos from the Wade Oval event, please see the information on the next Cleveland Foundation centennial gift of free Tri-C JazzFest outdoor concerts on June 27 and 28.