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cleveland, ohio is the most affordable housing market in the u.s. (duh!)

The national media is beginning to figure out what Clevelanders have always known -- when it comes to housing costs, your dollar stretches a lot farther here than on the coasts.

"Cleveland is the country's most affordable market, where the average price of a four-bed, two-bath homes comes in around $64,993," writes Carly Ledbetter in this November 15th story in the Huffington Post. "California, which lays claim 9 out of the 10 most expensive markets, also has the most expensive market in the U.S. with Los Altos (aka Silicon Valley), California as the most expensive market, as average houses list for about $1.963 million. Big surprise -- San Francisco is only the 6th most expensive market."

"Just to put things in perspective, for the price of just that one "average" Los Altos home Coldwell estimates that a home owner could purchase about 25 homes in Cleveland. Yikes."

Read the full story here.

balance and brews pairs hour-long yoga session with a beer tasting (yes, this is a thing)

There it was, nestled in between the press releases about "how to de-ice your car in winter" and "quick breakfast recipes." Hell, we almost deleted it.

The best story pitch that we received all week.

An eager entrepreneur named Melissa Klimo Major is launching a series called Balance & Brews that "introduces yoga and beer events at local Cleveland breweries."

Yes, this is really a thing. We googled it, and apparently it happens in other cities as well. And this is Cleveland, after all, where our post-industrial economy is entirely fueled by beer. Beer will save us. And if it doesn't, the t-shirt and cupcake shops will.

Getting sweaty among the stainless steel barrelsNever mind that the pace of job growth in Northeast Ohio continues to lag behind the nation. Toast Cleveland's renaissance with another $6 pint of ale!

(If you haven't noticed the sarcasm here, then we'll try harder. We actually think this could be a cool idea -- though we only plan to show up for the drinking part.)

(Seriously, folks, this is actually a thing -- we checked out the bios of the instructors, and they're legit. They even have a mission statement: "To create balance by joining two inspired worlds: we see unity and yoga, and beauty in a great beer." A Hindu yoga guru said that, surely.)

From the press release:

"Events consist of an hour long, all-­levels yoga practice, followed by beer and a brewery tour. First hosted by Butcher and the Brewer, with onsite Cleveland Brewing Co, Balance & Brews has five remaining events scheduled in 2014:

Namaste, yeah. Now, let's go have a pint! Saturday, November 22 at 3:00pm: Butcher and the Brewer
Tuesday, November 25 at 6:00pm: Market Garden Brewery
Saturday, December 6 at 3:00pm: Butcher and the Brewer
Saturday, December 27 at 3:00pm: Butcher and the Brewer
Tuesday, December 30 at 6:00pm: Market Garden Brewery

Balance & Brews was founded by local yoga instructor and craft beer enthusiast Melissa Klimo­ Major as a way to present both the yoga and craft beer worlds in a more accessible way, and to inspire a balanced lifestyle."

Cheers, Melissa! Thanks for making our week with this news. Now, go and do a downward dog or something, and then chase it with a pint of Thirsty Dog ale ...

discover cleveland's neighborhoods through cle city life tours

Cleveland Neighborhood Progress has announced that it will be hosting two CLE City Life tours on Saturday, November 29th and Saturday, December 27th.

"Cleveland Neighborhood Progress is pleased to offer citywide bus tours to introduce (or re-introduce) you to some of the coolest and most unique places to live in Northeast Ohio," the website states. "Join us and see why Tremont and Ohio City receive so much publicity. We’ll  show you why University Circle is considered the most intellectual square mile in the nation. And you’ll understand why demand is so high for Downtown living options. All this and more!"

The cost of the tour is $12. You can register here.

there's life beyond beer in ohio city, say brewery district leaders

These days, news not only frequently breaks on Facebook and Twitter, but social media can be used for crowdsourcing ideas about a neighborhood's future, too.

Sam McNulty, owner of a half dozen restaurants and bars on the increasingly flourishing West 25th Street, announced on his Facebook page last week that he and his business partners are purchasing the former Orange Blossom Press Building. Now they're looking for suggestions as to what kind of tenant should go there, and they're specifically not seeking a bar/restaurant.

That's right, the people who have made their money selling you $5 pints and touting Ohio City's beer-driven renaissance say there's too much of a good thing.

Here's what McNulty -- who might be considered Ohio City's unofficial baron of beer and prince of pints -- wrote to his followers on Facebook:

"so we bought another building in ohio city ... our good neighbors and dear friends at orange blossom press had a great 30+ year run and decided to retire. when they told us the bittersweet news, we immediately put on our city planning hats and started thinking about what use would be best for this neighborhood that we love dearly and want to leave more fun than we found it.
so the four of us partners, mark, Michael, and Andy agreed that ohio city has enough restaurants and bars. we all know so many people want to move to ohio city but can't find cool housing and so that's a definite need, but this building wouldn't work for that use ... so that left us with some sort of exciting retail use or dynamic office tenant or.....?

here are the basic details on the building:
1935 west 25th street
-approximately 4,300 square feet first floor
-approximately 3,00 square feet basement
-probably the best foot/bike/vehicle traffic of any location in the city

we're open to any and all suggestions. feel free to send a direct message if you'd like as well. here's to bringing a great new neighbor to this great neighborhood!"

Got suggestions? Contact Sam McNulty via his Facebook page. And you can drop us a line, too -- we're interesting in knowing what you think Ohio City needs.

huff po blogger writes that 'cleveland, ohio is a magical place'

"My 30 hours in Cleveland was magical," writes Stacy Bare, Director of the Sierra Club Outdoors, in this Huffington Post article. "And while I'm not sure that's a word a lot of people use to describe Cleveland, it still seems apt a few weeks removed from my visit."

The writer praises the Cleveland Museum of Art, Rockefeller Park, Little Italy, Great Lakes Brewing Company and the Browns. They won that day!

Read the full story here.

city lab says you can buy 1 home in silicon valley -- or 30 in cleveland

A November 12th story in The Atlantic's City Lab says that Cleveland has emerged as the most affordable housing market in the country, and we are undergoing a "revival." Buy now!

"For the second time in three years, Los Altos, California, ranks as the most expensive housing market in the U.S.," writes Kriston Capps. "How expensive? If you're thinking about buying a family home there in Silicon Valley, you may want to keep looking: A four-bedroom, two bathroom home in Los Altos is going to set you back nearly $2 million. For that money, you could buy 30 homes that size in Cleveland. Or, as the report notes, 25 homes plus Cavs tickets for 50 neighbors for nine years."

Read the full story here.

cle orchestra selects slavic village as the site of its next 'at home' residency

The Cleveland Orchestra has announced that its next neighborhood residency will take place in Broadway Slavic Village.

From the press release:

"'The Cleveland Orchestra At Home in Broadway Slavic Village' will consist of community activities, musical performances, and education presentations throughout the community in Spring 2015.

Broadway Slavic Village was chosen because it is a Cleveland neighborhood that symbolizes both the history and the future of Cleveland. The Broadway Historic District at the intersection of E. 55th street has ethnic roots in the Czech and Polish communities with rich musical heritages.  Broadway Slavic Village was once the center of the foreclosure crisis, but today it is a national leader in reimagining urban land use and is home to people of all ages, races, and income levels, active families, young professionals and empty nesters.

The centerpiece of the Orchestra's neighborhood residency in Broadway Slavic Village will be a free, public Cleveland Orchestra concert on Friday evening, April 10, 2015 at Our Lady of Lourdes Church. The residency activities will also include solo and chamber performances in unique locations, education programs at local schools, and a series of new artistic collaborations with neighborhood arts and cultural organizations."

become a part of soup: cleveland celebrates its second grassroots micro-grant dinner party

There are various ways for Clevelanders to apply for grant money for creative projects, but few are as simple, community-driven or tasty as SOUP, a grant program designed for funding small to medium sized creative projects over a yummy potluck meal.

Cleveland’s inaugural event began with 100 guests packed into the Ohio City home of Marika Shioiri-Clark and her partner and soup co-host, Graham Veysey. “SOUP builds excitement around community. It’s all about talking about great ideas over dinner,” says Shiori-Clark.

The first SOUP event resulted in a $2,000 micro-grant to Rust Belt Riders, a pedal-powered waste removal company that delivers compost to local community gardens.
You’re invited to meet your Cleveland neighbors and pitch an innovative project to the community at SOUP, Vol. 2 on Thursday, November 20th. Pitches can range from fixing a pothole to funding a community art project to building sustainable housing.
Here’s how it works:
Attendees donate $20 (cash please) at the door, meet, mingle and bring a dish to share. Participants can submit proposals for community projects in Cleveland that they would like funded. Shiori-Clark and Veysey will pick about five projects to present at the dinner. Selected projects will have four minutes each to pitch their project during the dinner and four minutes to answer questions from the audience. Attendees vote anonymously during dinner on the project they think will most benefit the community. The entry donations are given directly to the winning project!

Here are the details:
Thursday, November 20th, 6-9pm 
St. John's Episcopal Church parish hall (the building on the left)
2600 Church Street, Ohio City
Please RSVP to clevesoup@gmail.com and include the dish you plan to bring.

If you're interested in pitching a project, please also reply with “Cleveland SOUP Pitch” in the subject line by November 15th. 
Below are four questions to briefly answer in your email if you have a project you'd like funded:

1. What is your project? (try to explain a tangible outcome you would be able to achieve with the money you would receive at SOUP)
2. How does this project benefit the Cleveland community?
3. What is your time frame for the project and how could you report
progress/completion at a future SOUP dinner?
4. How will you use money raised from SOUP?

step out, cleveland invites you to 'shake off the rust'

As part of the Lockwood Thompson Dialogues, LAND Studio and Cleveland Public Library invite you to a weekend filled with dance workshops, discussions about dance and a nighttime community dance party.

The event, which is called "STEP OUT, Cleveland ... SHAKE OFF THE RUST!", takes place November 8th-9th at the Global Center for Health Innovation.

Presenters, workshop leaders and performers include DJ FreQ Nasty, an electronic music producer and developer of The Yoga of Bass, a study of the spiritual connection between yoga and dance; Ana Rokafella Garcia, a B-girl and filmmaker who broke into dance in New York City during the early days of the hip hop scene; and Ragen Chastain, a dancer, marathoner and Health at Every Size advocate who travels, speaks and blogs at danceswithfat.org about self-esteem and body image.

Clevelanders who will be presenting include Jasmine Dragons, Cleveland Exotic Dance, and DJ Red-I and Daniel Gray-Kontar of Sanctuary Cleveland.

All events are free. In a press release, LAND Studio invites participants to:

"SPEAK UP at a live, interactive discussion with experts who will open up about struggles, successes, and finding their voice through dance.

SHAKE LOOSE with free public classes at varying levels, aimed at letting the inner dancer – experienced or not – break out.

GET DOWN with a nighttime dance party that's open to all!"

There will also be a cash bar and food trucks on site. C'mon down and shake it!

small box celebrates grand opening of three container stores

The Small Box Cleveland project has now achieved critical mass, with three retail tenants officially open for business. Now the retailers and organizers behind the project are ready to celebrate, and you're invited to join the festivities.

The Historic Warehouse District Development Corporation, Cleveland Browns, Banyan Box and The Wardrobe are hosting a grand opening party on Thursday, November 6th from 4:30-6 p.m.

Small Box is a marketplace featuring shops made from converted shipping containers. The creative project is located at West 6th Street and St. Clair Avenue. Small Box also features a unique green space called The Lawn.

The grand opening event will feature live music by the Shivering Timbers, shopping, snacks and refreshments. Find out more information here.
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