Monday, June 8, 2009

Flea Market and Festival Set for June 27th

The rocket car is back! And so is the Larchmere Flea Market and Festival, which is set for Saturday, June 27th from 11 am - 5 pm on Larchmere Boulevard.

The Flea Market and Festival combines the fun and community spirit of a street fair, with over 100 vendors on the street offering their wares, covering kitsch to collectible and everything in between.

As for the rocket car, it was created from an authentic space rocket swinging ride that was salvaged from the old Euclid Beach Amusement Park. It has a 1973 Oldsmobile Toronado drive train that helps to make it street legal, just in case you were curious.

You can ride the rocket car all over the festival. Just don't forget to get off and check out the wonderful vendors, workshops, music, food and merriment.

One of the more notable events is the Local Author Book Fair at Loganberry Books. Already, there are a couple of dozen authors scheduled to participate ... Check it out and support the local literary scene!

Larchmere and Shaker Square Neighborhoods Featured in Cleveland Magazine

The June 2009 issue of Cleveland Magazine features a colorful insert that promotes the Neighborhoods of Shaker Square.

It includes a great write-up about the Dancing Sheep, a self-proclaimed "hodgepodge" store on Larchmere Boulevard. The Dancing Sheep, owned by Lynne Alfred and Bob Hanson, features handcrafted jewelry, specialty gifts such as blown-glass pens, children's toys such as hand-carved alphabet trains, and one-of-a-kind clothing that Alfred calls "wearable art."

The marketing piece - which will reach tens of thousands of people in Greater Cleveland as well as visitors from outside the region - promotes living, working and shopping in the neighborhoods of Shaker Square.

Pick up the latest issue of Cleveland Magazine or stop by a store on Larchmere to pick up a copy. You can also visit Cleveland Magazine here.

Larchmere Welcomes Polished Professionals

Polished Professionals, a new barber shop, recently opened on Larchmere. Lathan Bennett and James Boyd are co-owners of the new business, which opened in the former Rider's Choice location at 12501 Larchmere.

"We plan to have a different look than the average barber shop," says Bennett. "We have a fireplace, and a really nice floor, for an upscale look. We're creating an atmosphere almost like a gentleman's own home while he's waiting for service. We want to suprise the community. We're looking to stand out and be a pillar for Larchmere."

Polished Professionals will offer haircuts, shaves and facial massages, as well as some services for women. The owners plan to be open Tuesdays through Saturdays. You can reach Polished Professionals at 216/421-1111 or stop by the shop to welcome Larchmere's newest neighbors.

To read the full article about Polished Professionals, pick up the latest issue of the Shaker Square Connection, which is out now and can be found at shops in the area!

Boulevard Blue Gets Stellar Review on

Congratulations to Boulevard Blue, which recently received a stellar review on "Metromix Cleveland," a web page maintained by

Kurt Steeber, pictured above, is the owner and chef of Boulevard Blue. After working at top restaurants in San Francisco and New York for fifteen years, Steeber returned to his hometown of Cleveland last fall and bought Boulevard Blue.

Steeber's long-term goal is to transform the restaurant into a destination venue that offers top-notch food, as well as a comfortable, casual bar where you can stop in with friends. He's already made some changes in decor, including a recently completed mural above the bar, and he's got his eye on expanding the front patio and creating a large, rear patio, too.

Boulevard Blue's menu features everything from tried-and-true bar favorites to classic dishes with a creative twist. There's something for everyone at this Larchmere favorite - the drink menu ranges from Pabst Blue Ribbon to an extensive wine list (bottles are half price on Tuesdays with the purchase of an entree).

Stop in for a meal, chat with Kurt and the bar and wait staff, and see the exciting evolution that's taking place at Boulevard Blue!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Larchmere is a front porch community. These outdoor rooms are a part of the neighborhood's fabric. They are a place to visit with neighbors, or simply to cool off in the summer.

"Larchmere PorchFest" is a new, grassroots event that will celebrate the porches in our community by bringing neighbors and visitors together for great musical entertainment.

"This is Cleveland's newest, coolest event and it's happening in Larchmere," says Katharyne Starinsky, event co-chair. "Porchfest will bring new people to the neighborhood that are not familiar with the residential areas."

This is a one-day event will feature some of the top regional musicians performing acoustic music on front porches throughout the neighborhood. The idea, spearheaded by Larchmere neighbors, was inspired by a similar event that takes place annually in the Fallcreek neighborhood of Ithaca, NY.

Larchmere Porchfest is scheduled for Saturday, June 20th from 2- 6 pm. Twenty bands and musicians that will perform on different front porches throughout the community. It will conclude with a full band, plugged-in concert at Shaker Square from 6-9 pm. The event is free.

Sponsors include the Coral Company, Metheny Weir, the Dancing Sheep, Vine & Bean, Martel Salon, Boulevard Blue, Neighborhood Connections, Cleveland Colectivo, Felice, Studio Graphique, Messy Magazine, the Grog Shop, and the Academy Tavern.

For more information, please visit

Larchmere Merchant Spotlight: Corcoran Fine Arts

We recently stopped by Corcoran Fine Arts to learn more about this unique gallery and fine art appraisal firm on Larchmere Boulevard. After entering the slate tiled foyer, we discovered a fascinating exhibit of Cleveland School artists on the walls of the gallery.

James Corcoran, an attorney, appraiser and art collector with over thirty years of experience, explained the significance of the collection, and why he decided to organize the show.

"At the time that these paintings were completed during the 20th century, Cleveland was the third wealthiest city in the country, and we had some very talented artists living here," says James Corcoran. "Besides, I needed something to put on the walls."

In addition to running the gallery, Corcoran has developed a business niche as both an attorney and a licensed appraiser. He appraises items that include paintings, sculptures and furniture, and has been successful with charitable donation and federal tax appraisals.

The gallery is open Monday and Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 11 am to 5:30 pm. It is open 10 am to 2 pm on Saturdays, or by appointment. For more information, visit

Metheny Weir, Flying Cranes and Martel Salon Win Storefront Renovation Awards

Congratulations to Metheny Weir, Flying Cranes and Martel Salon, who participated in the city of Cleveland storefront renovation program in 2008, and received awards for their eye-catching new signage from the city of Cleveland.

"We were thrilled to be a part of the storefront renovation program in 2008," said Holly Coughlin of Metheny Weir, a firm that specializes in painted finishes. "We love how our sign turned out."

Pictured above are Kim Metheny (right) and Sue Weir, two Shaker Heights residents that founded their successful company in the basements of their homes, before expanding to a storefront space on Larchmere.

Crowds Come Out for Sidewalk Sale and Enjoy the Beautiful Weather

Lovely weather and the thrill of the hunt attracted bargain seekers galore to the Larchmere Sidewalk Sale this past Saturday, May 23rd.

"We were busy," said Marc Goodman of Marc Goodman's Antique Mall. "There were a lot of people on the street."

Harriet Logan of Loganberry Books was enthused, as well. "This was my best spring sidewalk sale ever," she said. "The weather definitely helped."

Several merchants reported that the new patio at the Academy Tavern was full. Kudos again to Sam Gantous for getting it done in time for the sidewalk sale.

If you missed it, well, you've got another chance! The next sale will take place on Saturday of Labor Day weekend.

The Academy Tavern Opens Up Long-Awaited Patio on Larchmere

Now one of the best places to hang out this summer is right on Larchmere Boulevard. Sam Gantous, owner of Academy Tavern at 12800 Larchmere Boulevard, just opened a beautiful outdoor patio in the rear of his restaurant, which has long been a neighborhood classic.

"This is the best patio in Cleveland," Sam likes to brag. While restaurant owners Boulevard Blue, Felice, Vine and Bean, Flying Cranes and others might argue the point, well ... One has to admit, Sam's new patio is pretty cool. It's a great addition to the many wonderful restaurant patios on the street.

Sam has wanted to open a patio at this location for a long time. After he bought the building in 2007 and went from tenant to owner, he got his chance. He took his plans for a brick patio, surrounded by a board on board privacy fence and raised flowerbeds, to the city of Cleveland's Board of Zoning Appeals, who voted unanimously to support it.

Just in time for summer, the patio is now complete, and its canopied tables and restful waterful offers the perfect retreat. It's a great place to enjoy an iced tea, crack open a beer or just sit and catch up with friends. Sam's new patio has made this neighborhood favorite even more of a draw.