Fun in the Northwest Neighborhoods: Edgewater Sidewalk Fest has something for everyone

With the summer heating up and the sun shining, one activity hopes to satisfy Cleveland’s need to be active and alive outside.

On Sunday, Aug. 8, Northwest Neighborhoods CDC will host the 2021 Edgewater Sidewalk Fest from 12 p.m. to  6 p.m., featuring music, games, and local food along Clifton Boulevard between West 115th Street to West 117th Street.
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Northwest Neighborhoods CDC marketing director Josh Jones says the annual event is meant to spark interest in the Edgewater neighborhood through its local restaurants, shops, art, and culture. The inaugural event in 2019 attracted 14,000 people, and he says they have already received messages via social media on how excited people are to attend this event.

Edgewater Sidewalk Fest“We think that it's going to be an exceptionally fun day,” says Jones. “We are already seeing the event grow beyond our expectations.”

The event will feature food pop ups from local restaurants such as Cleveland Cookie Dough and Scoot! Cold Brew.

There will be live music from hip hop artist Floco Torres, who will perform from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.; DJ Richie OneWay performs from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.; and hip hop band Red Rose Panic performs from 4:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.

Organizers encourage attendees to walk around to the many businesses along Clifton Avenue. New businesses include popcorn shop The Fancy Kernel, the barbecue and bourbon restaurant Landmark Smokehouse, and new outposts like Edison’s Pizza and Rising Star Coffee inside Lucky’s Market.

Jones says that the small businesses in the Edgewater neighborhood have been very receptive to this year’s event as well as past events.

“Our businesses along Clifton have a lot of self-initiative,” says Jones. “They're always looking for ways to make the street feel lively and activated.”

Other activities include face painting from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.; pinwheel craft and sand art from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.; and even a COVID-19 vaccination site open from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. for people 12 years and older provided by Neighborhood Family Practice—an organization that works to give people on the west side of Cleveland affordable healthcare services. 

Among these festivities, there will be free bubbles for all, cornhole games, and even a giant Jenga game for any group that might want to stop by for some stacking fun.

Jones says that it has been enjoyable just to organize this event and collaborate with his fellow coworkers on providing entertainment and drawing people to the neighborhood.

“It's been really fun to brainstorm activities that will make the street feel lively,” says Jones. “[We] imagine everything that's possible, and then see what unique gifts and resources the residents offer.”

Jones also encourages people to visit Edgewater Park and Beach that is open for biking, swimming, or just strolling by the water.

Northwest Neighborhoods CDC was created from a July 1 merger between Cudell Improvement Inc. and a company called the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO).  

In its mission to develop and serve the Edgewater neighborhood, Jones says the team at Northwest Neighborhoods CDC hopes that this outdoor festival will not only entertain, but also encourage people to come back—and even move to the neighborhood—in the future.

“I hope people discover what an amazing walkable community we have here in the Edgewater neighborhood,” Jones says. “I hope they can see themselves, coming back again and again and maybe even wanting to live in the neighborhood or nearby someday.”

This free event takes place on Sunday, Aug. 8 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Read more articles by Danny Fogarty.

Danny Fogarty is a journalism major at The Ohio State University. As a journalist, he loves the opportunities to meet a variety of different people. He especially likes that any story can captivate the audience, no matter the scale. He has worked with his college newspaper at Ohio State, "The Lantern," and also works for 270 Gridiron sports league in central Ohio. With Freshwater, Danny hopes to meet many new people and bring life to all the amazing stories throughout Cleveland. 
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