Sun, Sand and Celebration Make Euclid Beach a BLAST!
We had a BLAST celebrating community and creativity on the shores of Lake Erie at the sixth annual Euclid Beach Blast! We jammed and danced to local talent at the Beachland at the Beach stage from The Prime Directive, Maura Rogers and the Bellows, David Loy and the Ramrods and Grupo Son Gitano and if jamming and dancing to the sound and the beat of these bands wasn’t enough, we kept it moving with a kickoff from the O.H. Perry Drumline, high kicks from Unified Martial Arts and side kicks and more from a Nulife fitness bootcamp demonstration!
And when we weren’t dancing and burning calories, we were chowing down on some great eats from B&M BBQ, Beachland Ballroom, Callaloo Cafe, Get Stuffed Solar Power Mobile Eatery, Coity Road Farmers Market and for our sweet fix, Savannah Kettle Corn and a scoop (or two or three) of East Coast Custard!
Down on the beach, sweet sounds of the Caribbean from Panic Steel Ensemble transported us to Trinidad amidst surf and sand! We buried the competition in the Waterloo Arts Sand Sculpture Contest and stood awestruck in front of world famous Sand Sculptor Carl Jara’s mammoth Monarch Caterpillar creation, and took a spin on a fat tire bike with Bike Cleveland.
Back up in the park, we made sand art with Cleveland Metroparks Outdoor Education and helped chalk artist Hector Castellanos “chalk the walk”, but it wasn't just all fun and games, we learned about the importance of taking care of our beaches and our lake by way of the “Plastic Perch”, a 6 foot long perch made entirely of trash collected from Euclid Beach and Edgewater Adopt-a-Beach cleanups and had a chance to learn about all the great things individuals and organizations are doing in the community and region to improve beach and water quality and improve the quality of life in our neighborhood - from the Cleveland Metroparks NatureTracks Mobile Learning Center to the East 169th Street Block Club. We also heard from many of you through community survey boards conducted by Cleveland Metroparks about the types of events, programming, improvements, amenities, hopes and dreams you have for Euclid Beach and our Lakefront Parks. Information gathered on the survey walls will be used by Cleveland Metroparks as they develop a plan for making improvements to our Lakefront parks. I will be sure to share the findings of the community surveys in an upcoming article!
And as the music faded into the crashing waves, we said namaste to the setting sun with One Tree Yoga and then settled in to a nice warm bonfire to learn about the storied past of the Euclid Beach Amusement Park with John Frato, President of Euclid Beach Park Now. What a great way to end a great evening!
Now for the many, many thank yous. I would first like to thank the weather for a gorgeous sunny, breezy day on the lake! But good weather or not, we could not have had such a great event without the help of many dedicated Euclid Beach Blast volunteers, including my friends and family, many of whom spent all day on Saturday at Euclid Beach to ensure that the event ran smoothly! MAJOR thanks also goes to our event partner, Cleveland Metroparks for making the event run smoothly in so many ways! Shout out to Ray McNiece who Emceed and entertained effortlessly during the entire event!
Thank you to all of our Beach Blast sponsors and community partners including, Northeast Shores, Neighborhood Connections, MetroHealth, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, Jergens Industrial Supply and Waterloo Arts and a song and dance of thanks to our Beachland at the Beach - Rock Solid stage sponsors including Cleveland Rocks, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, Party Safari and Rock the House Entertainment.
A big thanks also goes out to all of our Euclid Beach Blast raffle basket contributors: Nulife Fitness, Callaloo Cafe, R&D Sausage, Radell's Sausage, Star Pop Vintage + Modern, Music Saves, Blue Arrow Records, Blue Breeze Grill, Scotti's Italian Eatery, the Standard, Chilli Peppers, Cavotta's Garden Center, Sandy's Frozen Whip, Muldoon's, Unified Martial Arts, B&M BBQ, Le Baron’s Cuisine, Georgio’s Pizza, Praxis Fiber Workshop and Zygote Press with close to $1000 worth of prizes! And speaking of prizes, thank you to Jen from Why CLE blog for coordinating the Why CLE Euclid Beach Blast giveaway on twitter! And thank you tweeters, especially @sos_jr for spreading all the Euclid Beach Blast love over the twittersphere!
Finally, I would like to thank my fiancée and North Collinwood celebrity (and frequent Collinwood Observer columnist!) Ali Lukacsy, who once again, helped make Euclid Beach Blast a success in so many ways, whether helping to coordinate volunteer meetings, promoting the heck out of the event or just keeping my head cool, she once again put the BLAST in this years Beach Blast--I love you!
Missed out and want to see how much fun we had on Saturday?
Visit facebook.com/euclidbeachblast and follow @BeachBlastCLE to see photos and videos of this year's Euclid Beach Blast, post your own photos and videos or email firstname.lastname@example.org with photos, videos and comments/feedback!
Can't wait to be part of all the momentum at Euclid Beach? Not to worry! Join Euclid Beach Adopt-a-Beach Team(TM) volunteers for their next beach cleanup on Saturday September 19th from 10am-12pm for International Coastal Cleanup Day at Euclid Beach!
Stephen Love is a Lake Erie fanatic from Cleveland, OH. In his day job he works for the Cuyahoga Land Bank and in every other waking moment is the founder and coordinator of Euclid Beach Adopt-a-Beach Team and Euclid Beach Blast! He started Euclid Beach Blast out of a desire to explore the connections between environmental stewardship, art, public spaces, music, and community.