First-annual student art show held at second-annual Euclid Art Walk

Euclid Art Show first-place winner "Hot Sauce in my Cup of Noodles" by Brady Wilson
Euclid Art Show first-place winner “Hot Sauce in my Cup of Noodles” by Brady Wilson
Euclid Art Association first-place winner "Losing Faith" by Madeline Pflueger
Euclid Art Association first-place winner “Losing Faith” by Madeline Pflueger
Euclid Art Association first-place winner "Self-Portrait" by Chazlyn Johnson
Euclid Art Association first-place winner “Self-Portrait” by Chazlyn Johnson
Euclid Art Association first-place winner "This is How Euclid will Look in 2050" by Zania Jones
Euclid Art Association first-place winner “This is How Euclid will Look in 2050” by Zania Jones
Euclid High School fine art students
Euclid High School fine art students (first-place winner Brady Wilson on the right)
Euclid high school photography students
Euclid High School photography students

(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Joan Milligan, Euclid Art Association program director)

How do you start an art movement? By making connections! During a planning meeting in June for the second-annual Euclid Art Walk, the Euclid Art Association brought up the idea that an art walk should have an art show for the students of the city. That was how the All-Student September Art Show was born.

The goal of the student art show was to connect the community to the local schools to promote the arts. Art is an important, but often limited, part of curriculum. Art teaches students be creative and to look for and recognize designs and patterns all around them. By developing this ability, students can be led to careers not only in art, but also in computer science, graphic design, architecture, engineering and more. Because of limitations in school budgets or family resources, many talented students don’t have access to quality art supplies. We realized the art show could serve another purpose – create a forum to display and recognize budding talent and award that talent with access to good supplies for various media.

Once the seed was planted, the show began to grow! A local landlord offered a vacant storefront to use as a gallery. Businesses, including HGR Industrial Surplus, made donations so that good-quality art supplies could be awarded as prizes to the students and classrooms. The prizes presented to the winners included:

  • Large and small tabletop easels
  • Pastel sets
  • Framing certificates to Driftwood Gallery
  • Drawing tablets
  • Canvases
  • Paint sets
  • Paint brushes
  • Crayons
  • Gift certificates to Dodd Camera
  • Photo paper
  • Art books

Additionally, the Cleveland Museum of Art sent its mobile art truck complete with hands-on art projects for children, and even a troupe of stilt walkers!

The Euclid Art Walk was held on Friday, Sept. 22, from 6:00-11:00 p.m. The Student Art Show was held from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in the donated storefront. We created a mini-gallery-feel in the store with art racks and tables from the Euclid Art Association. Live painting opportunities for both adults and children were available in front of the store.

This inaugural art show had 46 entries from elementary through high-school students ranging. There were enough entries at the high-school level that we were able to designate two judging categories: Photography and Fine Arts.

 

Euclid mayor and school superintendent share initiatives with the community

Euclid Mayor Kirsten Holzheimer Gail at Euclid Chamber of Commerce Community Leaders Breakfast 2017On Oct. 17, a full house of Euclid-area residents and businesspeople gathered in the meeting room of the Euclid Public Library for the Euclid Chamber of Commerce’s Community Leaders Breakfast. First, Kacie Armstrong, library director, said a few words about the purpose of the library in the community. Next, Sheila Gibbons, Euclid Chamber of Commerce executive director, announced upcoming chamber events and introduced a representative from the breakfast’s sponsor, Allstate Insurance Agent Bill Mason.

The first guest speaker was Euclid Mayor Kirsten Holzheimer Gail. She addressed three areas of focus for the city: economic development, safety and building a vibrant community. Some recent and future projects in the city that bring in new investment and tax dollars for the city include 1,000 new jobs being created with the demolition of Euclid Square Mall and new construction of an Amazon distribution center, the creation of a technology center at Lincoln Electric and surrounding streetscape at E. 222nd St. and St. Clair Ave., a 25,000-square-foot expansion at Keene Building Products, a 40,000-square-foot expansion at American Punch Co., an expansion of Rick Case Honda, a groundbreaking for an O’Reilly auto parts store, and planned expansions to Irie Jamaican Kitchen and Mama Catena.

The second initiative, safety, includes promotions, new hires, training and community-education opportunities for the fire and police departments. Finally, building a vibrant community encompasses community cleanup, recycling, beautification and improvement grants. On Nov. 2, the city will unveil its master plan draft to the Planning & Zoning Department.

The second community leader to speak was Euclid City Schools’ Superintendent Charlie Smialek. He introduced a number of school employees in attendance as well as three Euclid High School Euclid City Schools Superintendent Charlie Smialek at Euclid Chamber of Commerce Community Leaders Breakfast 2017students. Then, he went through a presentation on the district’s vision that included a new Fab Lab to be built as part of the Early Learning Center to introduce science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) instruction in grade school. It will be one of only two early learning Fab Labs in the nation. He also discussed technology programming at the high school and an update on the campus construction project that is underway for scheduled completion in 2020.

Both speakers fielded questions from the audience and gave a plug to support Cuyahoga Community College’s November 2017 bond, Issue 61 to update aging buildings.

Euclid City Schools’ culinary arts program offers low-cost lunch to the community

culinary art studentsEuclid City Schools, in partnership with Lakeshore Compact, offers a two-year culinary arts program to Euclid High School juniors and seniors that teaches them nutrition, safety, sanitation, equipment use, food preparation, baking fundamentals, customer service and other skills toward certification. The students run a full-service restaurant, Euclid Culinary Bistro, that is open to the public three days per week for lunch.

Colleague Susan Porter of LEAP and I decided to support our community by visiting the bistro, located in Shore Cultural Center at 291 E. 222nd Street, Euclid, Ohio. It is open Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. during the school year, but call to check the hours since they close for school breaks and holidays when class is not in session. The bistro also offers a buffet three times per year (opening day in October, before winter break, and closing day in May).

If you want to help students with their serving skills and culinary skills and are interested in an affordable, no-frills, hot meal, you might try stopping by just to do a good deed by supporting the program.

We had fried pickles, a thin strip steak with steamed yellow squash, and a club sandwich with house-made potato chips. Some of the food was cold; some of the order was wrong; some of the food needed to be sent back and re-cooked, but we looked at it as an opportunity to help students learn real-world restaurant skills. Chef Dan Esquivel, their teacher, stopped by our table and invited us to return, which was a nice, personal touch.

It is kind of like going to a dental, massotherapy or cosmetology school; you go to let the students “practice” on you since practice makes perfect. And, it’s pretty cool to be part of their learning experience.

Bond issue passage for Euclid City School District makes new construction possible

Euclid High School facade

(Courtesy of Guest Blogger Audrey Holtzman, public relations & marketing coordinator, Euclid City Schools)

The Euclid City School District secured passage of Issue 111 this week. This successful effort will allow the schools to rebuild their high school, build a new middle school, construct an Early Learning Village on the site of Forest Park Middle School, improve recreational facilities at Sparky DiBiasio Stadium and Memorial Park, and convert the Central Middle School property to a MetroPark. 

Dr. Charles Smialek, Superintendent of Euclid Schools, issued the following statement:

“Thank you to our Euclid community for believing in our school district and passing Issue 111. We have secured a much brighter future for our district because of you! 

We continue to have much work to do to become the district we need to be for our community and students. We will soon begin a strategic planning process to help us collaboratively lend clarity to our immediate future. In the coming weeks, we will communicate these steps and ask many of you to participate in the process. Today, however, let us celebrate a truly significant victory for Our Euclid.

We will immediately begin to prepare to rebuild our high school, construct a new middle school, shape an Early Learning Village, and improve multiple recreational outlets in our community. We will work to ensure that our efforts will improve Euclid for generations to come.”

The 7.89 mill bond issue passed by more than 1,100 votes and will result in an increase of approximately $16 per month in property taxes for the owner of a home valued at $70,000. The overall cost of the construction will be offset by a $40-million contribution from the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission.

Firefighters teach elementary-school children about fire prevention

Silhouette of two firefighters fighting blazing fire and timber

The Firefighter Phil Program brings free fire-safety lessons into elementary schools nationwide since 1975 to teach K-4 schoolchildren the functions and roles of the fire department, actions they can take to prevent fires in the home, and actions to take if a fire occurs. This is accomplished via a 30-minute, entertaining, school-assembly program using magic, games, songs, jokes and puppets to teach children about fire safety and prevention, fire drills, escape plans, 911, fire hazards, kitchen safety, smoke alarms, stop – drop –roll, get out & stay out, stay low & go, two ways out, and respect for authority figures.

One of Firefighter Phil’s animal pals stops by to teach the lessons with a member of the local fire department. To reinforce what students learned in the live presentation, each child is given a grade-specific activity book to take home. The program is made possible through advertisements in the activity book that are purchased by the local business community, including HGR Industrial Surplus. In addition to the satisfaction of helping teach children fire safety and potentially save lives, the businesses receive a certificate of appreciation signed by the fire chief.

This year, Assistant Chief Anderson of the Euclid Fire Department or one of his Euclid firefighters will visit Arbor Elementary School, Bluestone Elementary School, Chardon Hills Elementary School, Our Lady of the Lake School, Shoreview Elementary School and Saints Robert & William Catholic School in honor of National Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 9-15 and present to 1,700 students.

 

Euclid Fire Department shield patch

Local businesses invest in each other

Four hands holding a house to represent good neighbors

HGR’s owners are dedicated to the Euclid community, including supporting other businesses, and they, in turn, support us. Our CMO sits on the board of the Euclid Chamber of Commerce, and I am on a committee to organize the chamber’s Amazing Race fundraiser taking place this Friday. I write the monthly “Hit the Ground Running” column in both The Euclid Observer and The Collinwood Observer to showcase area manufacturers, the products they make and their contributions to the workforce. We also are very involved with Euclid High School’s S.T.E.M. program and Robotics Club. In 2014, we bought our building and have invested in renovations and improvements.

To continue our support of the community, I have gone out and met with many amazing organizations and businesses in the area and blogged about many of them, such as HELP Foundation, The Cleveland-Style Polka Hall of Fame and Museum, NEO Sports Plant, The Twelve Literary and Performing Arts Incubator, artists Jerry Schmidt and Larry Fielder of The Waterloo Arts District, Euclid Historical Society and Museum, Euclid Art Association, Euclid Beach Park Museum, and Our Lady of Lourdes National Shrine.

There are two other businesses that I recently discovered. One is newer; and one is an institution that has been in the neighborhood since the 1970s. If you are looking for a good cup of coffee in the area, where do you go? No Starbucks. I found myself driving to Speedway for a cup to go. Then, Tami Honkala of HELP Foundation told me about an Arabica tucked away in the back of a medical building off a side street. They have no website, no sign, no advertising. No one but the tenants of the medical building know they exist even though they have been at that location since 2012.

I headed over to the Euclid Office Plaza at Richmond Road and Euclid Avenue for a look. I met the owner, Ronny, and got excited that I could get a mocha or a latte. The only problem was: NO DECAF! I stopped drinking caffeine years ago and only order decaf espresso. They don’t have it. This is a coffee house that is not for sissies. They also have food, including a salad bar, and offer catering services.

The longstanding local health food store, Webers, at 18400 Euclid Avenue, is owned by Bill Weber and his daughter-in-law Clara Weber. They carry many of the products I regularly buy on Amazon and eBay. Clara even was willing to special order some products they didn’t have in stock. When I shared with her where I worked, she told me that they were HGR customers and had purchased a forklift that they regularly use to unload inventory from delivery trucks.

What comes around goes around. It’s always good practice to be a good neighbor.