Category Archives: Charity

Why? Weekend of Festivals!

There’s nothing I love better than a summer festival. I will drag Matthew (and now Jeffrey) all over the Greater Cleveland area to stand elbow-to-elbow with other Clevelanders, drink overly-sugared lemonade, and eat funnel cakes. This weekend, two fabulous festivals are on tap to keep you busy and happy and well-fed.

On Saturday, July 18, St. Malachi Parish is hosting its Homecoming Festival from 2pm-8pm at the St. Malachi campus at West 25th and Detroit.

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There will be live music, food trucks, and a cornhole tournament and other games. There will also be history displays and church tours, as St. Malachi is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year!

Image Source - stmalachi.org

Image Source – stmalachi.org

A lot of you know St. Malachi because of their charitable community work or their 10-mile race. The Homecoming Festival is a great way to learn more about this Cleveland faith institution, have some fun, and benefit the parish in the process. Admission is free.

Then on Sunday, July 19, is one of Cleveland’s biggest (and one of my favorite) summer festivals: Taste of Tremont. The festival takes over Professor Avenue from 12pm-8pm.

There will be entertainment; a beer and wine garden, including signature rum drinks from Portside Distillery; more amazing food than you could possibly eat from places like Lolita, Fahrenheit, Dante, Bourbon Street Barrel Room and more; shopping with Banyan Tree, Evie Lou, So CLE Tees, and more; and just the general happy, fun vibes of a crazy Cleveland street fair. Admission is free, food and drink purchases are on you.

I hope to see you out and about this weekend at one or both of these great festivals! What are your favorite Cleveland summer festivals?

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Why? Grapes and Ale!

Friday night, Matthew and I got to take in the awesome Progressive Field renovations, enjoy tasty food and drink, and mingle with friends and fuzzy mascots alike at Our Lady of the Wayside‘s Grapes and Ale fundraiser.

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Much like the refreshed feel of Progressive Field, this event felt new and fresh this year. Matthew and I agreed this was our favorite Grapes and Ale so far! We got to check out the VIP area, with a special wine tasting of premiere reds and whites, as well as tasty appetizer from Spice Kitchen and Bar.

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The wine and beer selections at the main event were expansive and all available at your local Giant Eagle, which makes finding your new favorite very easy! I’ve always been impressed by the variety of libations at Grapes and Ale, but the food this year was at a new level in terms of variety and taste.

Barrio and Sweet Moses were two of the food providers and were able to use their new Progressive Field locations for service. We enjoyed a delicious chicken taco and some decadent sea salt caramel ice cream with fudge sauce from these local gems.

Hodge’s served up some addictive crispy pork rinds. But my favorite of the evening came from The Tree House Gallery and Tea Room, whose slider with both a pierogi and a sparkler made for a creative, delicious, and much-talked-about dish.

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It was a great evening at Grapes and Ale. We were so impressed not only with the new feel of Progressive Field, but with the quality of the event as well. It was a good time for a wonderful cause!

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***Disclosure: I was asked by Our Lady of the Wayside to help promote Grapes and Ale. In exchange, I received 2 complimentary VIP Majic of Wine Tasting tickets. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Twilight at the Zoo!

As you know by now, the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is not just for kids. There are so many fun events happening this summer put on by the Cleveland Zoological Society that are the perfect way to get your dose of adult fun at the Zoo.

Today I was going to tell you all about Date Night at the ZOOvies, presented by the Cleveland Airport System. But tickets went on sale yesterday and sold out that same day! There’s some serious buzz about these great Zoo events!

If you missed out on ZOOvies tickets, don’t worry, because there’s another Zoo event that you can enjoy this summer: Twilight at the Zoo, presented by Medical Mutual.

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On Friday, August 7, the Zoo will host 18 local bands, spanning rock to pop to swing to reggae, who will serenade you under the summer sky, while you get to check out the Zoo critters after hours, eat and drink, and just generally have a fabulous time!

The general admission party goes from 7pm-midnight and includes admission to the Zoo and all the bands, small bites, beer, wine, and soda. General admission tickets are $75 in June and $80 in July.

The VIP party, presented by Scene Magazine, goes from 6pm-9pm and includes all the general admission amenities, plus open bar, priority parking, and tasty food from AMP 150, Choolaah Indian BBQ, Sterle’s Country House, and more! VIP tickets are $150.

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Twilight at the Zoo is always one of the hottest parties of the summer, plus proceeds benefit our wonderful Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Buy your tickets today! And stay tuned here later this summer for your chance to win your way into Zoo events… It’s going to be a wild summer at the Zoo!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Date Night at the ZOOvies and Twilight at the Zoo. In exchange, I will receive complimentary tickets for myself and to give away to these events. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Grapes and Ale Giveaway!

Do you like wine? Beer? BBQ? How about all of these combined? Grapes and Ale, a fundraiser to benefit Our Lady of the Wayside, is the event for you, then!

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This great summer event keeps getting bigger and better each year! On Friday, June 26, Grapes and Ale will take over Progressive Field‘s newly-renovated Right Field District and “The Corner” with over 300 wines to sample, craft beer tastes for purchase ($5 for 10 samples), and succulent BBQ fare and sweet treats from some of Cleveland’s hottest restaurants, such as Barrio, Corleone’s, Hodge’s, and Sweet Moses.

Plus, all of this fun and frivolity benefits Our Lady of the Wayside, which for nearly 50 years has been providing residential and transportation services to children and adults with developmental disabilities.

There are two ticket levels available for Grapes and Ale:

Premiere Grand Tasting – $50 – unlimited food and wine samples, access to “The Corner” to purchase craft beer samples, souvenir glass, and live entertainment

VIP Majic of Wine Tasting – $125 – all of the above, plus private wine blind tasting, complimentary parking, hors d’oeuvres and featured wines, and one-hour early admission

Tickets are available online or you can enter to win 2 Premiere Grand Tasting tickets right here! Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment on this post for each):

1. Leave a comment telling me whether you prefer grapes (wine) or ale (beer) to sip in the summer.

2. Visit Our Lady of the Wayside and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow Our Lady of the Wayside on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following.

4. Follow @OurLadyWayside and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to attend Grapes and Ale, CLE’s hottest BBQ, thanks to @OurLadyWayside and @WhyCLE: http://wp.me/p1fb9r-2oD

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment here each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Sunday, June 14 at 11:59pm and the winner will be announced the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Our Lady of the Wayside to help promote Grapes and Ale. In exchange, I will receive 2 complimentary VIP Majic of Wine Tasting tickets for myself and 2 complimentary Premiere Grand Tasting tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Zippity Zoo Doo!

***A bit of blogkeeping: Congratulations to arnoldtd (Comment #44), randomly-selected winner of 2 Big Kahuna tickets to Luau on the Lake to benefit Shoes and Clothes for Kids. Please check your email for more details. If you didn’t win, you can still purchase tickets online.***

On Friday night, Matthew and I got to enjoy one of our favorite fundraisers, Zippity Zoo Doo, put on by the Cleveland Zoological Society to benefit the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. The theme of this year’s event was Serengeti Sunset and from sunset-colored martinis to delicious African-inspired food, it was an evening that transported you.

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As always at Zoo fundraisers, there were adorable critters out to play, like this baby owl and this fennec fox.

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But the stars of the evening were the giraffes, as we got a sneak peek at the brand new Ben Gogolick Giraffe Encounter.

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Since Jeffrey is the proud “Zoo Parent” of a giraffe, I was especially excited to check out the giraffes’ new home. The Giraffe Encounter is beautiful and will allow visitors to get up close and personal with these gorgeous creatures.

To continue the giraffe theme, Matthew and I had to ride the giraffes on the Circle of Wildlife Carousel!

IMG_3198We also were the winning bidders on an awesome Step 2 silent auction package, with sent us home with great stuff for Jeffrey, as well as a happy feeling for donating to the Zoo’s education programs!

From food and drink to animal encounters to music and dancing to a table filled with blogger buddies and tweeps, Zippity Zoo Doo was a lovely summer evening for a great cause!

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The Cleveland Zoological Society has some upcoming events that will allow you to both donate to our wonderful Zoo, as well as have a fun time!

If giraffes are your thing, the Zoo is celebrating World Giraffe Day on Sunday, June 21, with special giraffe crafts and activities, “Giraffles” with great prizes, and more. Also, all donations made to giraffe conservation through the Zoo in June will be matched 4:1 (up to $5,000) thanks to the Leiden Conservation Foundation.

And in August, both Twilight at the Zoo and Date Night at the ZOOvies provide fun, adult evenings at the Zoo that can help you prove that you’re #wildaboutCLE!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Zippity Zoo Doo. In exchange, I received one complimentary and one discounted ticket to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Luau on the Lake Giveaway!

Summer event season is in full swing and one of my favorite summer parties is celebrating it’s 10th year with an even bigger and better soiree. The Luau on the Lake to benefit Shoes and Clothes for Kids happens on Saturday, July 25 at Wendy Park at Whiskey Island.

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This year there are three tickets tiers, with even more fun to enjoy:

General Admission – $50 through June 26; $60 through July 20; $65 at the door – inlcudes island buffet, beer, wine, soft drinks, and souvenir cup. Pre-mixed Island Cocktails available for purchase.

Big Kahuna  – $60 through June 26; $75 through July 20 – includes all the above plus 3 Island Cocktail drink tickets, Hawaiian lei, VIP cup and tote, and half-hour early admission

Tiki God – $125 per person or $200 per couple through July 10 – includes all of the above plus open bar (beer, wine, liquor, and Island Cocktails), appetizers, VIP tent with seating and port-o-lets, and one-hour early admission

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No matter which price point you choose, you’ll be helping a wonderful organization that provides not only shoes and clothes, but also confidence and dignity, to local children.

You can purchase tickets to Luau on the Lake online or you can enter to win two Big Kahuna  tickets right here! Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment for each):

1. Leave a comment telling me your favorite island cocktail.

2. Check out the Luau on the Lake Facebook event page and leave a comment here letting me know you visited the page.

3. Follow SC4K on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following.

4. Follow @SC4K and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to be a Big Kahuna at the @SC4K Luau on the Lake thanks to @WhyCLE: http://wp.me/p1fb9r-2ob #SC4KLuau15

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Sunday, June 7 at 11:59pm and the winner will be announced the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Shoes and Clothes for Kids to help promote the Luau on the Lake. In exchange, I will receive 2 Big Kahuna tickets for myself and 2 Big Kahuna tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

jenclesig_pur

Why? Mongo Surf Wear!

As summer rolls around, it’s time to break out some summery clothes. I always like to update my wardrobe for the new season and that includes my Cleveland pride gear. Which is why I was so excited when Ned Sabanegh, CEO of Mongo Surf Wear introduced me to the Mongo Surf Cleveland Skyline Tee.

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Ned Sabanegh is Cleveland born-and-raised. He and his sister recently started Mongo Surf Wear in California, with all American-made products that are beachy, breezy, and perfect for summer days.

The Mongo Surf Cleveland Skyline Tee (which also comes in a tank top) is the fashionable choice for your next outing to Whiskey Island or to show your hometown pride on your beach vacation. The Tee comes in six different colors and is only $20!

Plus, a portion of the profits from the Cleveland Skyline Tee will be donated to various organizations around the Cleveland area, such as the Cleveland battered women’s shelter, gifts that go to children in foster homes, and local animal shelters. It’s always great to support businesses that give back to the community!

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So, you can look good, support a Cleveland native, and help others? That’s a win all the way around! Plus, if you enter the code MongoSavings at checkout, you can save 20% off your order.

I hope to see lots of Mongo Surf Cleveland skyline shirts around town this summer!

jenclesig_pur

Why? Zippity Zoo Doo!

***A bit of blogkeeping: Congratulations to Lori Augustine (Comment #7), randomly-selected winner of a family four-pack of tickets to see Timber! at the Children’s International Theater Festival at Playhouse Square. If you didn’t win, you can purchase tickets for any of the shows and get details about Festival activities here.***

One of the Cleveland institutions that I’m so proud to help support each year is the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Not only does the Zoo provide education and fun for all ages, but their fundraisers are always some of the best parties of the summer.

Coming up on Friday, June 5 is the 42nd annual Zippity Zoo Doo, hosted by the Cleveland Zoological Society to benefit the Zoo’s mission and education programs.

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The theme of this year’s event is Serengeti Sunset. Guests will enjoy a delicious African-inspired dinner, as well as visit the Zoo’s herd of Masai giraffe in the new Ben Gogolick Giraffe Encounter.

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Zippity Zoo Doo has not only a total fundraising goal, but also a goal-within-a-goal to raise $50,000 for education scholarships by filling the Giving Tree. The table with the highest total contribution by 9pm that night will win an immediate behind-the-scenes experience with the giraffe herd.

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So, let’s review: a delicious dinner, a fabulous setting, an exclusive look at the new giraffe encounter, and did I mention the live music, dancing under the stars, cocktails, a silent auction filled with unique Zoo experiences, and being able to attend one of the top-rated fundraisers in Cleveland?

Tickets for Zippity Zoo Doo are on sale now. Individual donation levels start at $250 and table champion levels start at $3,500. Click here for more details. I hope to see you under the Serengeti Sunset!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Zoological Society to help promote Zippity Zoo Doo. In exchange, I will receive one complimentary ticket and one discounted ticket to the event. Matthew and I are members of the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

jenclesig_pur

Why? Market at the Foodbank!

***A bit of blogkeeping: Have you entered to win a family 4-pack of tickets to see Timber! at the International Children’s Theater Festival at Playhouse Square? Check it out! Remember, you can tweet daily for additional entries.***

On Sunday, the Greater Cleveland Foodbank hosted its 20th annual Market at the Foodbank event. Every dollar raised at this event has the spending power to provide 4 meals to people in need. Last year, the Foodbank provided 45 million meals to the needy in our community.

So, obviously this event benefits a great cause. It also provides a fun evening of wine and food to enjoy. Here are my 10 favorites (in random order) from this year’s event:

1. AMP 150‘s speck-wrapped asparagus. Simple, but really tasty.

2. Sterle’s Country House‘s chicken paprikash, served with a smile by their new chef, Jeff Jarrett. I particularly liked the creme fraiche instead of sour cream.

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3. Bomba Tacos and Rum served up made-on-site guacamole with pumpkin seeds and goat cheese, complimented by their yummy plaintain and yucca chips.

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4. Pub Frato. Not only were their braised beef tacos delicious, but it’s rare to find a restaurant at one of these events that I had never even heard of before. Pub Frato bills itself as “Concord’s own gastropub.” Based on the food we tasted and the friendliness of the staff, I can’t wait to check it out!

5. Portside Distillery‘s Rusalka Vanilla Stout, plus the coolest beer pulls this side of Market Garden Brewery.

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6. The Clevelander sandwich from Sans Souci, which featured pork cheek, local swiss, Tony Packo’s pickles, and a mystery sauce of deliciousness.

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7. The amount of food and drink. Last year, a lot of purveyors ran out early in the evening. This year, there was plenty to go around!

8. The balance of sweet and savory offerings was also much more balanced at this year’s event, but there were still plenty of sweet treats to enjoy. Our favorites were from Mitchell’s, Fantasy Candies, and Lucky’s Cafe.

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9. The lobster, apple, and bacon bites from the Rusty Anchor at the Music Box. Not only were they good to eat, but I love something I can eat without a plate at a strolling food and wine event!

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10. The generosity of the attendees and participating restaurants to make Market at the Foodbank’s 20th anniversary the best one of these events we’ve attended!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Greater Cleveland Foodbank to help promote Market at the Foodbank. In exchange, I received 2 complimentary general admission tickets. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? United Way Rock the Catwalk Giveaway!

***A bit of blogkeeping: Today is your last day to enter to win one of two Bruegger’s gift cards to thank a deserving teacher in your life. Check it out and remember you can tweet daily for additional entries!***

Spring event season is in full swing! Which not only means that there’s tons of fun ways to do good happening around town, but also means you might be wondering what to wear to these events. Well, one event has you covered with both: United Way of Greater Cleveland’s Rock the Catwalk!

rtc_logo_largeRock the Catwalk takes place inside the gorgeous Cleveland Museum of Art atrium on Thursday, May 14. The event is hosted by the United Way of Greater Cleveland’s Women’s Leadership Council, with all proceeds benefiting early learning programs to ensure that every child has access to quality education.

Aside from the fabulous venue and great cause, you’ll enjoy food, drinks, and a fashion show modeled by civic, business, and community leaders.

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Tickets for Rock the Catwalk are now on sale online. VIP tickets are $225 and include hors d’oeuvres, open bar, and premier seating. General admission tickets are $125 and include hors d’eouvres and two drink tickets.

And to help you have a charitable and fashionable spring, I have two general admission tickets to give away! Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, or all four entries, just leave a separate comment for each):

1. Leave a comment telling me which of the featured boutiques‘ fashions you most want to see at Rock the Catwalk.

2. Visit Cleveland Women’s Leadership Council and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @UnitedWayCLE and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to Rock the Catwalk with @UnitedWayCLE and @WhyCLE. Enter to win tickets here: http://wp.me/p1fb9r-2lP

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment each time you tweet.

The giveaway will close on Monday, May 4 at 11:59pm and the winner will be announced the following day. Good luck!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the United Way of Greater Cleveland to help promote Rock the Catwalk. In exchange, I will receive 2 general admission tickets to give away. I declined my own 2 tickets due to scheduling conflicts. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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