Over The River: loads of LEGOs, a run through the Zoo, an AHA! moment ...

Welcome to the inaugural edition of "Over The River," a monthly calendar of exciting activities taking place throughout the area. Have a fun event you want to share with your fellow Clevelanders? Send us your freshest happenings.

Now for our May listing, which is full up with a confluence of art and poetry, live mural painting and even a Frog Bride.

A powerful melody
Minnesota singer-songwriter and fiddler Gaelynn Lea performs her debut tonight (May 17) at the Beachland Ballroom at 7 p.m. A winner of NPR's 2016 Tiny Desk Concert Contest, Lea is a classically trained violinist with over 20 years of performance experience. Her debut album, entitled "All the Roads that Lead Us Home," was released in 2015, with a six-track EP of original songs, traditional fiddle tunes, and poetry debuting last year.
Lea, who has a congenital disability called osteogenesis imperfecta, or brittle bone disease, is an active disabilities advocate and speaker. The musician believes accessibility is a must for a disabled arts community that wishes to share its talents without discrimination.
Purchase tickets for the show here.
Out on the streets
LAND Studio and Market Garden Brewery are hosting a street festival to highlight public art that confronts racism, diversity and social justice.
The INTER/URBAN Street Festival, free and open to the public on Friday, May 19 at Market Garden's brewing facility (1849 W. 24th Street), supports INTER/URBAN art currently installed along Cleveland's public transit system. The citywide project, inspired by literary works from the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards, is designed to connect public transit riders with a large-scale, socially conscious art experience.
Cleveland design firm The Bubble Process will paint a mural onsite. Live music, food trucks, art vendors and Market Garden beer will also be part of the fun. Visit the event page here.

If you build it...
Great Lakes Science Center's LEGO-themed "brickbuster" exhibition is getting re-set for another round of imagination-fueled fun. The Science Center's new series of hands-on LEGO activities and workshops is here from May 27 to June 4, and features some of the top LEGO builders from around the country.
"Explore It!" will showcase more than 30 unique creations, including the world debut of the first LEGO castle set, a creation of the city of Springfield from "The Simpsons," and NASA rockets made from the popular colored construction toys. The Northeast Ohio LEGO Users Group (NEOLUG) will host workshops and a giant community build on June 3 and 4.
For specific activities, dates and times, visit the Science Center website.

It's alive!
If the arts are a cause for celebration, then Cleveland State University/ Playhouse Square neighborhood will be buzzing next month when the first annual Arts and Humanities Alive!, also known as the AHA! Festival, opens up with a veritable party pack of authors, performers and celebrities.
The three-day fest, scheduled for June 7 – 9, kicks off with an outdoor book fair along Euclid Avenue from 14th to 17th streets. Authors Isabel Wilkerson, Jonathan Safran Foer and Jon Meacham will discuss their award-winning works, while a children's area features kid-friendly storytelling and performances.
Live theater is in the offing as well, highlighted by a production of "The Frog Bride" and Nora and Delia Ephron's "Love, Loss and What I Wore," performed by Mamaí Theatre Company. Documentary fans, meanwhile, will get to see the premiere of "The Vietnam War," a new documentary by Ken Burns.
Attendees can register for individual events on the festival's website.
Where art meets poetry
On Saturday, June 10 at smARTspace at 78th Street Studios from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., America SCORES Cleveland will hold a fundraiser featuring 50 pieces of artwork created and donated by local Cleveland artists and inspired by the poetry of America SCORES Cleveland's participants. All works will be part of a silent auction at the event. Preview the art and poems here and purchase tickets, which cover heavy hors d'oeuvres, unlimited wine and Great Lakes beer, here.
Past offerings have included Guardian V by Dan Morgan paired with "The Inner Me!," Delon H., Grade 4, Wade Park School; Nightscape by Rachael Broadwell, inspired by "Light at Night" by Delanio C., Grade 5, Walton School; and Dream House by Stephen Yusko informed by "The Rain" by Anilah L., Grade 4, Wade Park School.

America SCORES Cleveland engages more than 750 area kids in health and literacy after-school programming at 11 Cleveland public schools, fostering healthy lifestyles, literacy and engagement.

'Mission' critical

Laura's Home Women's Crisis Center prides itself as a bastion of stability and self-sufficiency for at-risk women and children. Clevelanders interested in supporting the center's good cause can don their sneakers for the Running With a Mission 5K Run/1 Mile Walk, taking place Saturday, June 17 at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.
Presented by the Sherwin-Williams Women's Club, the event supports crisis support groups, on-site adult education and job-readiness training aimed at women with a history of trauma and mental health issues. Children who come to Laura's Home receive support through Pathways childcare, tutoring and mentoring programs.
Race participants receive admission to the zoo. Kids can enjoy their own dash race as well as a DJ photo booth and appearances by Cleveland professional sports mascots.  Pre-registration for the race ends on June 16. Participants must register by June 11 to receive a race shirt. 

Read more articles by Douglas J. Guth.

Douglas J. Guth is a Cleveland Heights-based freelance writer and journalist. In addition to Fresh Water, his work has been published by Midwest Energy News, Kaleidoscope Magazine and Think, the alumni publication of Case Western Reserve University. A die-hard Cleveland sports fan, he also writes for the cynically named (yet humorously written) blog Cleveland Sports Torture.   
Signup for Email Alerts