Friday, January 30, 2009

Think Warm with Kollander Travel

Michael Benz, owner of Kollander Travel, asked that we share the following about changes and improvements at Kollander Travel located on East 185th Street:


It is my pleasure to inform you about an exciting change that occurred on December 1st, 2008. Kollander World Travel has left the AAA-East Central organization after 5 years of cooperation. We have taken advantage of a new opportunity that allows us to continue our focus on international travel while still serving the travel needs of our local community. We have maintained our ongoing tour and travel agency operation and re-emerged as a new Ohio company, still named Kollander World Travel. We will be keeping the same location at the 971 Building on E.185th Street, as well as our long standing phone numbers, web site address, and most importantly, all the existing employees.

International cooperation with a long time vendor partner became a logical path to growth in this global environment. This affiliation with Kompas International allows us to better leverage our nationally recognized expertise in worldwide travel. The opportunity to separate was presented by AAA East Central management early this summer. They had abandoned plans to expand in the Cleveland area and the Kollander office would no longer be turned into a full service AAA branch office on E. 185th. These changes took place after the acquisition of the Ohio Motorist Association by AAA-East Central of Pittsburgh about 3 years ago. We value our relationship with the AAA organization and the many AAA members we have been proud to serve over these years and into the future.

Going forward, Kollander World Travel will be actively engaged in marketing and selling vacation and corporate travel to our friends and clients across the nation. We will increase our efforts in the custom group tour and cruise products for which we are well known. We are determined to continue productive relationships with our key local partners and the many organizations we are fortunate to serve.

I am proud of and grateful to the excellent staff of Kollander World Travel for their professionalism and patience as we changed and upgraded all the major systems we use on a daily basis here at the office; from a new digital phone system to our next generation computer reservation system. They took on major, sweeping changes and managed the transition remarkably well.

We thank you for your patronage and look forward to serving your travel needs!

Thank You and Best Regards,

Michael J. Benz
Kollander World Travel

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Waterloo Fest Meeting Rescheduled

The Waterloo Fest planning meeting scheduled for today at 10:30 has been canceled.

The meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday, Feb 4 at 10:30 in the Arts Collinwood Community center. If you're unable to attend next week's morning meeting, the following meeting will be in the evening, Wed Feb 18 at 6:30pm.

We look forward to seeing you next week.

Sarah Gyorki
Executive Director
Arts Collinwood

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Waterloo Arts Fest Planning Party!

We are planning this year’s Waterloo Art Fest. Wanna help make neighborhood history? Help out. Here’s how:

For all of you who missed our first planning meeting, here's your next chance:

Wednesday, January 28th, 10:30am
in the Arts Collinwood Community Art Center

Whether or not you are able to make these meetings, you can still get involved in our small committees or other areas!

If you haven't yet, just let myself or Sarah Gyorki know that you'd like to get involved in any of these areas. We'll be getting these small groups together very soon to start hashing out the details of each area:

Signage & Street Design
Art Exhibits & Installations
Kids’ Area
Street Performers
Volunteer Coordination
After Party
Press Releases
Volunteering the day of the Fest

distribute marketing materials
send folks our way: performers, artists, volunteers, sponsors, community groups, anyone!

There are Save the Date cards in the Community Center now! Feel free to grab some and put them around town! The image of the front of the card is also attached to this email. Go crazy posting it on the internet and linking the image to the Fest website!
The website is in progress, and very soon you will be able to go there for all major updates:

If you get involved in the planning process, you'll also have access to our new blog, where we'll be doing the majority of our communication over the next 6 months.

Thanks for thinking about getting involved in this year's Arts Fest!
Melanie Hershberger
Waterloo Arts Fest Coordinator

Friday, January 23, 2009

North Collinwood all over Cleveland Magazine!

Have you seen the January issue of Cleveland Magazine? You know the one I am talking about. The issue with fetching Monica Potter on the cover?

Well, they should have renamed this month’s issue North Collinwood Magazine with all the references to our neighborhood inside. Missed it? Here is our page-by-page guide to all things North Collinwood in the issue:

First of all, the cover story (pages 68-71)! Monica Potter grew up right here in North Collinwood on Overlook Park Drive. Before moving to Los Angeles to pursue her career, Monica lived on Dorchester as well.

Monica also had some very kind things to say about the neighborhood on page 71. Monica is quoted as saying about her childhood in North Collinwood, “That was the best place in the world to grow up. It was like a dram, that street. You drove down it, and nothing else existed anywhere else – just hardworking people, big families, struggling. We all looked out for each other, and we’re all still friends to this day. It was a real community.”

That not enough for you? How about our scoring two of 2009’s Most Interesting People? On page 82, Shoparooni owners, Marlee and Steve Brown, are discussed. Want to meet these local celebrities? Well, shop Shoparooni located at 15813 Waterloo Road.

North Collinwood also boasts two of Cleveland’s top children’s entertainers. Longtime Jackpot Festival and Gaming employee Aaron Bonk is highlighted on page 98, while longtime John’s Fun House employee Jeff Reid is interviewed on page 102. (Both stores are located on East 185th Street.)

Not exactly in the neighborhood, but darn close is Americano. This new bistro is located nearby in Bratenahl and a strong review of the restaurant is located on page 54.

We want to thank the writers and editors at Cleveland Magazine for all the great reporting on the cool people and places that, when combined, make North Collinwood the greatest place to see a sunset!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Rite Aid Now Open!

When the Medic Drug closed their chain throughout the region, East 185th Street lost their longtime drug store. Residents immediately demanded that Northeast Shores secure another drug store so residents can walk (or use public transportation) and meet their pharmacy needs.

We immediately jumped into action by determining that Rite Aid was the only drug store chain that was both expanding quickly and investing inside the city. We created a colorful creative mailing and bombarded Rite Aid’s corporate offices. Thankfully, our ploy worked. The response received was that our flyer was creative and that East 185th Street would be a great location for a new Rite Aid.

While our intent was to convince Rite Aid to build within the city limits (specifically the existing Medic Drug location or the site where the new KeyBank will be), Rite Aid wanted to be as close to Euclid Hospital as possible. Rite Aid purchased several commercial buildings at the southeast corner of Lakeshore and East 185th Street. Many of these buildings had been vacant for quite some time.

Rite Aid then commenced with demolition of the existing structures and construction of their brand-new building. Rite Aid’s total investment exceeds $1.5 million.

Last Thursday, Rite Aid opened their doors with multiple two-for-one specials. Go by and check it out. And remember, it all started with our mailing to Rite Aid.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Annual Meeting This Tuesday

On Tuesday, Northeast Shores will host our 2009 Annual Meeting at 6:30 p.m. The location of the Annual Meeting is the Memorial Nottingham Library located at 17109 Lakeshore Boulevard. This meeting is open to the public.

A major part of the Annual Meeting is the election of governing members to our Board of Directors. This year, we need to elect eight members to our board. Below is a brief bio of each person interested in serving on the board.

We hope for great turnout! See you there. (While the meeting is open to the public, only members can vote! Contact Denise Lorek at to discuss membership.)


Ms. Anita Brannan, resident - Ms. Branan is a 19 year resident of the Villa Beach Club neighborhood. Ms. Branan is the current president of the Villa Beach Club Association and has been for several years. Ms. Branan is an Organizational Consultant for non-profits primarily through the Cleveland Foundation and Neighborhood Connections. Ms. Branan is also a social worker for the Hospice of the Good Sheppard and an Adoption Assessor for the Berea Children's Home. Ms. Branan is currently on the Safety Steering Committee of Northeast Shores Development Corporation and is a co-chair person for that committee.

Mr. Mike Cermak, resident – Mr. Cermak lives near East 185th Street and is very interested in the continued development of that commercial corridor. Mr. Cermak is employed by the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA), where he is responsible for their website and other electronic communications. Mr. Cermak is a regular member of the Northeast Shores Marketing and Media Relations Committee, Commercial Development Committee, and the Design Review Committee.

Mr. Larry McFadden, resident – Mr. McFadden is a resident of Marcella Road. Mr. McFadden is a resident of the neighborhood for 44 years. Mr. McFadden is the previous president of Friends of Euclid Creek. Mr. McFadden is currently the chair of the Northeast Shores Outreach Committee and is seeking election for his second term on the Board of Directors.

Mr. Frank Revy, resident – Mr. Revy has lived on Overlook Park Drive since 2003. Mr. Revy is the Treasurer of the Overlook Park Neighborhood Association. Mr. Revy is a tax and investment advisor at Westlake Advisors. Mr. Revy recently opened a tax return preparation center on East 185th Street under the name Nottingham Tax & Financial. Mr. Revy is an active member on the Northeast Shores Commercial Development Committee.


Ms. Cindy Barber
, Beachland Ballroom – Ms. Barber is co-owner of the Beachland Ballroom & Tavern on Waterloo Road. In addition, Ms. Barber is a resident of Beulah Park. Ms. Barber (representing the Beachland Ballroom) is running for her third term on the board and is currently President of the board and chair of the Commercial Development committee.

Mr. Frank Barresi, Martin’s Men’s Wear – Mr. Barresi is the owner of Martin’s Men’s Wear on East 185th Street. Mr. Barresi has remained a long-term participant in the East 185th Merchants Association over several decades. Mr. Barresi (representing Martin’s Men’s Wear) is running for his fifth term on the board and is currently chair of the Property Management committee.

Mrs. Elva Brodnick, Euclid Beach Park Now – Mrs. Brodnick is president of Euclid Beach Park Now, a nonprofit group of volunteers dedicated to the preservation of Euclid Beach Park memories. Mrs. Brodnick was involved in a number of Euclid Beach events held recently in the neighborhood and is dedicated to the return of the Carrousel to Euclid Beach State Park. Euclid Beach Park Now is running for their second term on the Northeast Shores Board of Directors.

Ms. Ruta Degutis
, Lithuanian Village Inc. & American Lithuanian Citizens Club - Ms. Degutis is the President and Managing Director of the of Lithuanian Village, Inc and the American Lithuanian Club located at 877 East 185th Street. The Building is a multi-tenant and multi-use facility including a tavern, restaurant, veterans post, offices, caterer, and banquet hall. Ms. Degutis is an active member of both the East 185th Street Merchants Association and the East 185th Street Block Watch. Ms. Degutis has been a long-time member of the community and many of her relatives continue to live in the neighborhood.

Mr. Scott Mills
, National City Bank – Mr. Mills is the Business Banking Officer for the National City Bank located on East 185th Street. Mr. Mills joined National City Bank in 2008 after owning his own small business for several years. Mr. Mills has represented National City Bank at several East 185th Street events and other community events. Mr. Mills is also serving his third term as councilman in the city of Highland Heights. Mr. Mills is an active member of the Northeast Shores Commercial Development committee. National City Bank is running for their second consecutive term on the Northeast Shores Board of Directors.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Opening at Arts Collinwood Gallery this Friday

Thought you'd be interested in the art opening Arts Collinwood is having this Friday for "Instructions from the Cook", a book that neighborhood-resident George Nemeth co-authored with Jack that Maurice's photographs helped illustrate. Photographs on display will include both work from the book as well as newer work by Jack and Maurice. Hope you can make it!

Photographs for New Conversations
The Art of Jack Ricchiuto and Maurice Small
January 16-January 31
Arts Collinwood Gallery
15605 Waterloo Rd.

Jack Ricchiuto, author of Instructions from the Cook: Recipes for New Conversations with ArtsCollinwood trustee George Nemeth (as well as seven other books), is a writer teaching people how to have the kinds of conversations that have the power to create a future different from the past. His clients are leaders, organizations, and communities striving for new approaches to leadership, strategic planning, project management, and community engagement. His photography reflects a Buddhist aesthetic developed by thirty years of practice.

Maurice Small is Cleveland's original Urban Farmer, a field consultant at the New Agrarian Center in Oberlin and Food Access Consultant at City Fresh. His favorite question is "What are you eating?" If there's a meal Maurice has eaten that he hasn't photographed, it was before he owned a camera. Maurice's photographs are included in Instructions from the Cook.

The opening for Photographs for New Conversations will be Friday, January 16 from 6:30-9:30PM and will included a City Fresh cooking demo, readings from Instructions and a session of Thinkers & Drinkers. It's free and open to the public.

For More Information, Contact:
Sarah Gyorki
Executive Director
Arts Collinwood

Friday, January 9, 2009

New Year's News Round-up

During the holidays, Northeast Shores and North Collinwood were covered in a variety of newspapers. We wanted to make sure that you had the opportunity to read each of these stories and also provide our own additional comments/updates about the stories.

Northeast Shores efforts for the LaSalle Theater were covered in a Plain Dealer story. Check out the story here:
Since this article was published, we have come to terms with the owner, Parkview Federal. While we do not have a signed agreement at this time, it appears that we are finally making progress on our plans to renovate the LaSalle Theater. More news as 2009 develops!

Northeast Shores efforts to add more community gardens to the neighborhood were mentioned briefly in this Scene Magazine story:

If you want to start a community garden after this arctic blast is over, the time to plan is NOW! Contact Denise in the office at and we will be more than happy to accommodate your farming dreams. We have space available but we need you to step forward and volunteer!

Finally, we have received several questions and comments about the following Plain Dealer story about a home purchased by Ward 11 Councilman Mike Polensek. You can see the story here, read a Plain Dealer editorial, and then follow that with reading a letter to the editor written by Polensek:

While these articles do not relate directly to Northeast Shores, we have received several requests from residents asking for clarification on these stories.

In an effort to set the record straight, we want to share the following comments based on the majority of questions we have received.

Did Northeast Shores buy a home and hold it until Mike Polensek was able to proceed with getting financing? No. Northeast Shores is not the Collinwood & Nottingham Development Corporation. Northeast Shores is the community development corporation for North Collinwood and Collinwood & Nottingham Development Corporation serves South Collinwood.

Isn't Brian Avenue in North Collinwood? Yes, the home discussed in the article is in North Collinwood. We do not know why the Collinwood & Nottingham Development Corporation (whose mission is to improve South Collinwood) was conducting business in our service area. They do not consult us on their redevelopment plans.

Did the Councilman ask us for the same deal? No. Councilman Polensek never asked Northeast Shores to purchase this home or even walk through it. Frankly, we didn't even know he was interested in the home. We learned about this whole situation by reading the paper just like you. The only reference the Councilman ever made is that he would mention even his street was experiencing foreclosures and was surprised how much value this foreclosure crisis is wiping out even on his own street.

Would Northeast Shores have participated in this transaction if asked? Northeast Shores does buy homes throughout the community for rehabilitation and sale. Further, we work with people interested in buying in the neighborhood and improving our community.

Would Northeast Shores buy a home for an interested person to hold it while they sought financing? Possibly, but only after a thorough understanding of why our role was catalytic in the transaction. In other words, why can't the individual proceed with the transaction without our help? Based on the news story, we do not have enough information to determine if we would have felt our participation was necessary. If you are interested in buying in the neighborhood and need help proceeding, please call us to see how we can help.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Cuyahoga Soil and Water wants your input!

We were recently contacted by Claire Posius at the Cuyahoga Soil and Water District about helping gather responses on an on-line survey tool they developed. Claire is our Euclid Creek Watershed Coordinator and she is pretty awesome, so I say we all help her out.

Please take a few minutes and complete the survey at the website listed below:

For those of you that don't know, Northeast Shores partners with the Cuyahoga Soil and Water District on improving the water quality for Euclid Creek. Claire is attempting to implement a pretty bold plan for improving the creek that has the potential of dramatically improving this natual resource in the neighborhood. When you have a few minutes, check out the full plan at: