Free Stamp: All things free in the #CLE for April 2018

free_stamp_001.jpgBob Perkoski

The best things in life are free, indeed, and our monthly "Free Stamp" feature rounds up all of the free #CLE events that get our "stamp" of approval. Got a free event you want us to include? Drop us a line here.

Ready to Launch
As it prepares to expand to Lakewood, LaunchHouse is hopping with free events. The Highland Heights coworking space is hosting two separate events on Thursday, April 19: a "Lunch + Learn" on building quality website traffic (using Google Adwords, display advertising, and social media), and a networking happy hour. The former will be led by marketing consultant TJ Salopek from 12 to 1 p.m., and the latter will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. (P.S. FreshWater editor Jen Jones Donatelli and other local journalists will be present at the happy hour, so come have a cocktail with us!)

Creativity in Collinwood
April is proving to be a busy month for the Maria Neil Art Project with two brand-new shows. Open through May 13 at Waterloo Arts Gallery, "Breaking Point" is the brainchild of New York-based artist Steve Cup and takes a provocative look at what Cup perceives as the "rapidly deteriorating sense of community" created by the Trump administration. The second show—titled "A Lovely Tremble"—by local artist Timothy Callaghan will be the first to be held at the new LaSalle Arts & Media Center in Collinwood. An opening reception will be held on April 20 from 5 to 9 p.m., and the show will run through April 22. For more info, click here.

La Dolce Vita
Now in its eleventh year, the Italian Film Festival is in full swing at Case Western Reserve University’s Strosacker Auditorium, showing an array of Italian films with English subtitles. (And it’s all free—see the lineup here.) The festival runs through April 20, when a closing night celebration will be held at 7 p.m. at the Cuyahoga Community College Metro Campus. Head for the Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts Black Box Theatre to catch the double feature of In Guerra Per Amore and Tutto Quello Che Vuoi.

Charmed Life
What happens when you combine music with forensic science with Brooklyn folk-noir? Find out on April 20 at 7 p.m., when Brooklyn folk-noir duo Charming Disaster brings their “Forensics, Crime, and Charming Disaster” show to Happy Dog Euclid Tavern. A celebration of “love, death, true crime, and the supernatural,” the event will be an offbeat mashup of live music, ghost stories, murder mystery, and history (as retold by historian Brandy Schillace of the Dittrick Medical History Center). Get more 411 here.

Splish, Splash, Time to Clean Up Some Trash
Celebrate Earth Day by volunteering for the Annual Doan Brook Stream Sweep on April 21 and April 22 from 1 to 3 p.m. in Cleveland’s Rockefeller Park. Plastic bags, bottles, food wrappers, Styrofoam, and coffee cups all too often find their way to Lake Erie—and this event gives citizens a chance to help whittle away the waste. While gloves and trash bags will be provided, but be sure to dress for the elements. Click here to find out how to make our Great Lake even greater.

It’s All Fun and Games
The Window to Sculpture Emerging Artist Series will feature Matt Lambart’s “Fun and Games” along with Eli Gfell’s “/X”. The former delves into "the parallels between hyper-masculine sport and the appropriative patterns of culture," while the latter takes a critical look at our society’s consumption patterns and the massive amounts of materials that get wasted. The statement-making dual exhibition runs from April 27 through June 1 at The Sculpture Center, with an opening night reception on April 27 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Learn more here.

Capture the Moment
The Biennial Fine Art Show is an awe-inspiring event that transforms an 18,000-square-foot commercial photography studio into an art gallery. The seventh installment of this biennial art show will take place April 27-28 at the Kalman & Pabst Photo Group. If art and free food/drink doesn’t spark your interest, perhaps the philanthropic angle will—a percentage of the sales benefits Flashes of Hope (a non-profit organization dedicated to creating portraits of children battling life-threatening illnesses). Get more info here.

Erase Hate
Ten years in, the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage's "Stop the Hate" contest is perhaps more necessary than ever. Via the contest, the Maltz Museum gives away $100,000 to local students from sixth through 12th grades in the Youth Speak Out personal essay contest and Youth Sing Out songwriting contest. Winners will be announced at the free awards ceremony on April 29 at 4 p.m. at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Registration is encouraged—please call 216-593-0575 or visit the museum website to register.