For three days in June, the Ohio Celtic Fest transports Midwesterners to the Emerald Isle with authentic music, dance, and merriment. Intended for Irish-Americans and non-Irish alike, the festival cultivates a connection with the old country through multiple performance stages filled with Irish musicians from the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Merchants offer an array of Celtic-themed gifts, jewelry, and embroidered goods, and a children’s area offers entertainment for the little ones, which can include puppet and magic shows, and a petting zoo.
For two August days, the oak-shaded land around Lake Metroparks Farmpark becomes home to a celebration of regional arts and gourmand culture as visitors gather to attend the 20th Annual Vintage Ohio Wine Festival. Representatives from 16 Ohio wineries will participate in the festivities, pouring samples of locally produced table wines and fruit wines to please virtually any palate.
The celebration isn't limited to the confines of a wine glass, though. Three separate stages will host performances by live bands throughout the afternoon and evening of each day, giving attendees an opportunity to tap their toes while enjoying a snack of freshly roasted corn, barbecue ribs, or funnel cake from one of the 15 restaurants with booths on the grounds. Additionally, the festival will feature local artisans selling everything from handmade jewelry to clothing and chefs leading cooking classes so visitors can learn the best way to filet a wine grape.
Voted Best Wine Shop in 2010 by CityVoters, Colonial Wine & Beverage offers a dazzling array of wines from across the globe. Colonial's seasoned sippers tantalize clients' taste buds with a selection of 12 wines from its extensive collection during the three-hour wine tasting. Guided by the vinological knowledge of the staff, curious imbibers can ask questions or improvise their own elaborate wine back stories that involve young grapes in love breaking free from the barrel they were born into.
Alesci’s embraces family traditions. If it’s not already apparent by the third generation of brothers who co-manage the deli and grocer, it shimmers to the surface in the stories of old regulars and those who remember Grandpa Frank Alesci. Starting with Frank, and now for more than 50 years, the Alesci family has curated a collection of imported products, providing immigrants with the sought-after goods from across the pond. Beyond that, it’s a place for fresh, crusty bread, pizza, a myriad of cheeses, and deli meats sliced by hand. Inside the 7,000-square-foot location, shelves are lined with everything from polenta to biscotti, olives to olive oil, and peppers who share space with their natural enemy: the tomato.
Matt Meineke was at an impasse. After crafting many batches of wine in his own home, Matt was running low on ways to improve the product's quality, save for one: growing the fruit himself. He and his family eventually settled on a 12.6-acre lot that was already planted with Niagara grapes. But that was barely the end of his trials. The old vines would need to be removed, the land would need to be adjusted for pH and nutrients, and the entire plot would need to be left fallow for a whole year. It would be 2011 before the first batch of wine could be bottled.
But it was worth the wait. That lovingly nurtured wine now fills the racks inside M Cellars' rustic tasting room, waiting to sigh "about time" with each popped cork. Shoes clapping on the hardwood, visitors can swirl pours of Matt's pinot noir, cabernet, and riesling into their glasses, furthering their enjoyment by snapping up bottles to take home or by expanding their wine knowledge with friends in one of the shop's Wine 101 classes.
Founded in 1988, Second Sole has laced its way to the forefront of footwear fitters, bedecking Cleveland’s jogging throngs in quality shoes conforming to each individual’s physical specs and running aspirations. An experienced staff that includes cross-country coaches and Division I runners will help you pick the perfect shoes from a vast selection of top brands, such as Adidas, ASICS, New Balance, and Nike. Treat tender toe-holders to a sleek pair of ASICS GT-2160 sneakers or encase your hooves in a pair of Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11s (both $100), winners of Runner’s World’s “Best Update”. Legs jealous of all the attention garnered by their nether-neighbors can dry their resentful tears on the chafe-eliminating DryLete fabric of Saucony Men's Omni LX Tight II pants ($65).