The Devil Strip JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 • THEDEVILSTRIP.COM
e r u t l u C & t r A , ic s u M Akron
in this issue
The Devil Strip lture
Akron Music, Art & Cu
CONTACT US: Office:
General Info: firstname.lastname@example.org
Instagram: @thedevilstrip _______________________________________
Publisher >> Chris Horne // email@example.com
Art Director >> Alesa Upholzer
Illustration and Design >> Bronlynn Thurman, Chris Grady, Jacob Luther
Photographers >> Svetla Morrison, Paul Hoffman, Bronlynn Thurman, Ilenia Pezzaniti, Shane Wynn
Contributing Writers >> Ben Arrington, Holly Brown, Jenny Conn, Jessica Conti, Susan Covey, Madison Cummins, Katelyn Gainer, M. Sophie Hamad, Noor Hindi, Katie Jackson, Jecca, Chris Kessinger, Isaac Kelley, Greg Milo, Eric Morris, Christopher Morrison, Brittany Nader, Ilenia Pezzaniti, Scott Piepho, Audrey Quinn, Roger Riddle, Sarah Stubbs, Bronlynn Thurman, Katie Wheeler, Joanna Wilson
Interns >> Madison Cummins, Sarah Stubbs, Audrey Quinn _______________________________________ The Devil Strip is published bi-monthly by Random Family, LLC. Akron Distribution: The Devil Strip is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. Copyright: The entire contents ofThe Devil Strip are copyright 2015 by Random Family, LLC. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission of the publisher is prohibited. Publisher does not assume any liability for unsolicited manuscripts, materials, or other content. Any submission must include a stamped, self-addressed envelope. All editorial, advertising, and business correspondence should be mailed to the address listed above.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
"We need to remember what 's important in life: friends, waffles, work. Or waffles, friends, work. Doesn't matter, but work is third." - Leslie Knope I have a large appetite. In my family, this was some kind of measure of manliness. My dad and uncles ate platefuls so I trained myself to do the same, leaving no taters behind. Over Sunday dinner, my folks joked I had a hollow leg while I headed back for my unnecessary thirds, ignoring the fact I was already full. This “clean plate club” thing is to me what the Hulk is to Bruce Banner. Yeah, I can “Hulk smash” a cookout, but damn—there are consequences.
“no discount for kinfolk.” A velvet painting of the Last Supper watched over a jukebox that hadn’t worked in a long, long time. The tables were stocked with pepper sauces and at least one outof-date bottle of teriyaki sauce marked with stickers from Big Lots. One visit to that now-shuttered place told you more about the city of Macon than any guidebook ever could.
One that really feels like Akron to us is Urban Eats. It isn’t necessarily the menu, which is always changing, but rather Liz, Jason, Max and Maya who are steadfast in their love of the city. It shows in the way they push for, support and promote the cool things that come their way. Like The Devil Strip, of which they were very early (like pre-print) fans. It’s also in the way they show their love for their customers, like my 4-year-old daughter Madeline. The first time I took her to Urban Eats, she fell for Liz, who gave her crayons and a pizza box to color, which later appeared on their social media. From there, we joked about an art show but Maddy took it seriously, making piles of art and inviting people to her art show. So Liz said, “Why not?” Now we have a date. On August 1, while you’re out for the Downtown Art Walk, please join us at Urban Eats to celebrate Madeline Olivia Horne’s first art exhibition. (Yay!)
As we wrap up this issue, our 10th (double digits, yay!), I’m in Las Vegas with my wife and kid visiting my in-laws. Generally, we stay off The Strip where people reach for authenticity but leave smiling with photos in front of a fake Statue of Liberty with fake showgirls then get dinner at a fake Eiffel Tower. This time, with Grandma volunteering to babysit, we pretended to get away, embracing the Vegas-ness of it all, which included indulging at a buffet. Of all the places, this is where it finally occurred to me that the quickest way to a city’s heart is through your stomach. In Macon, there was this one soul food joint named Honeybear’s. It sat on the seam where abandoned houses and abandoned factories met. Once, I sent an intern there to get photos for a story and Honeybear herself caught him taking pics of the exterior then pulled a shotgun on him, demanding the film from his digital camera. Hers was a windowless, wood-paneled room where the kitchen was just a stove and an old white fridge. You scribbled your order on the freebie notepads pharmaceutical reps give doctors but whatever Honeybear wanted to fix you is what you’d get. There were two signs near the register: “no credit to movie stars, inlaws or outlaws” and
to find my Honeybear’s in Akron, my Cox Café, my Ron & Cheng’s Kitchen—those places that say more about Akron than words can.
In closing, don’t expect this issue to be a
Maddy has a thing for art museums. (Photo: Daddy Mermaid von Braun Horne)
Aside from my family and friends, the food is what I miss most about my hometown. It’s one part because of the food itself—burgers and shakes at The Rookery, pizza at IVP, coastal seafood at Jim Shaw’s, etc.—but it’s two parts the intangible quality that means we can’t find *this* anywhere but Macon, Georgia. And that’s what I’m hunting in Akron. The reason I asked y’all which restaurants you consider the “Most Akron” is so I could turn your responses into a checklist for myself. I want
comprehensive look at Akron food. Like the music and art issues before it, this is a start, a commitment to the exploration itself. As always, I’d love to hear what you think and where you want this paper to go, so shoot me an email or a message. Mail me a letter. Fly us a pigeon. Send us smoke signals. Say hello in person. I’ll listen.
Thank y’all, Chris
ABOUT THE COVER We received more than 100 responses from our friends and fans on social media to our nosey questions. Which local restaurant to you miss most? What are the most overlooked dishes in Akron? Which local eatery do you consider the “Most Akron” for breakfast, for lunch and for dinner? The answers were fantastic and so we used them in this issue and culled the names for this cover. One stood out because it kind of made me sad that I never got to experience it: Dodie’s Highland Café. By an almost two-to-one margin, that’s the restaurant folks said they missed most. Googling for answers about what happened to Dodie’s, I came across—and was soon mesmerized by—this lovely photograph by the generous and immensely talented Tim Fitzwater, who graciously let me share it here.
Thank you, Tim
(CREDIT: Tim Fitzwater)
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News n’ stuff, in case you missed it
The Lead : UA’s President Business changes mind about $50 fee; violates ‘no take-backsies rule’ After taking flack in public from a state legislator, presidents of several other Ohio universities, and the faculty, staff and students at the University of Akron, Scott Scarborough is rolling back on his plans to charge upper-classmen a $50 per credit hour “fee.” This outcry will likely die down as it did when the “name change” was packaged by the administration as a “rebranding.” Small victories can be dangerous distractions. Losing the fee hike is good news but Scarborough’s plan means the baseball team will still get dismantled. As former faculty union president Walter Hixson wrote in an ABJ editorial, the program costs $700,000 while former UA president Luis Proenza pocketed $500,000 for his year-long sabbatical. UA could have saved baseball between that and the $375,000 spent to renovate the current prez’s rent-free house (Scarborough was reportedly allergic to Proenza’s cats so…). And, 215 people in our community will still lose their jobs. The bigger problem may ultimately prove to be the connection, outlined in a report by the Chronicle of Higher Education, that Scarborough has with Texas businessman Randy Best. After making almost $400 million from selling an education company that serviced No Child Left Behind, Best started
In other news St. V alum takes friends to get burgers, see movie LeBron Raymone James (St. Vincent-St. Mary’s Class of 2003) visited the Regal Cinemas in Montrose for a screening of a film he recently made with friends. (It’s even feature length. Wowsers!) The local product, who is reportedly taking time from his passion for earth science to pursue basketball, even fed his pals at a nearby Swensons. Hey, hey, Galley Boys for everyone! Suffice it to say, we’re all looking forward to what this young man does next. Summa CEO schedules unexpected foot-extraction surgery at Akron Roundtable Tom Malone, Summa’s president and CEO, was the speaker at the Akron Roundtable on July 16, which happened to be the day the Akron Beacon Journal broke the news that our largest employer will enforce a new dress code that requires women to wear pantyhose with skirts and dresses—for “professional” reasons. In defending the plan, Malone said to soon-to-be-groaning community leaders, “Have you been to Walmart? People who left the house actually thought they looked good some days.” Because professionalism. So, to recap, we can trust the health professionals at Summa with our lives, but Malone and company do not think the women who work there can be trusted to dress themselves without ending up on PeopleOfWalmart.com.
DEVO becomes (slightly) bigger than life in downtown Akron Good news for folks who really loved the cover of our last issue—or at least love Janet Macoska’s notable photo of Devo, taken in 1978 on a break while the band shot its video for “Satisfaction” at the Akron Civic Theatre. On Saturday, August 15, the Civic, the Akron Summit CVB and Nagel Advertising are installing a 20-foot by 20-foot version that will make the members of the band just a tad bigger than life size. Macoska will be in town and so will Devo founding member Gerald Casale. Festivities begin at 11 AM. Countryside adds two more farms to its Nat’l Park lease program If being the “farm” part of the “farm-to-table” equation and living in a national park are on your bucket list, Countryside Conservancy and the National Park Service have an opportunity for you. They’re adding two more farms—on in Valley View and the other in Boston Heights—to their longterm (i.e. – 60 years) lease program, which already includes nine other farms, including a vineyard and winery, livestock, pick-your-own (which sounds like what my folks would have said if we were farmers), egg and community-supported veggie farmers. Each farm includes a rehabbed residence and up to 12 acres of land. For all the deets or to RSVP for the open houses on July 31 and August 10, contact Julie Gabelman at 330-657-2542 or Jgabelman@
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cvcountryside.org, or download the official RFP at nps.gov/cuva by following the links to farm offering, or visit cvcountryside.org.
Academic Partnerships. This company uses the reputations of real-life universities to sell online courses for students around the globe, operating under a university’s name despite condensing the curriculum and providing its own instructors. While Scarborough was at DePaul, that university sold the "academic assets" of Barat College to Academic Partnerships. An article by the Texas Observer, titled “Randy Best Is Going to Save Texas’ Public Universities, Or Get Rich Trying,” noted that while Scarborough was at the University of Toledo, he tried to bring in Academic Partnerships but failed because of a “faculty uprising.” So, what’s it say that a year into his UA job he’s already contracted with Academic Partnerships? They will run an online RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree through UA, according to a memo posted at OhioHigherEd.org. While this means UA may get a boost in enrollment, much of the profit from the online courses ships back to Texas. The chances are slim that Scarborough wants to stop there. But let’s stop here and say it’s a great idea—maybe even the future of higher education. However, some questions remain: Why Academic Partnerships? Who else was considered? Was there ever an RFP and should there have been? Of course, we have other questions but let’s start here.
business people, public servants and workers in the nonprofit sector who will learn “to achieve greater levels of involvement and effectiveness as community leaders.”
The art park cometh As local institutions go, the Akron Art Museum is kicking ass as a cultural change agent. Breaking ground this month, the Bud and Susie Rogers Garden will be a one-acre tract that’ll be open to the public and available for “creative activities, such as a trailhead for bicyclists, a picnic and play space for families, an outdoor space for yoga or even an exploration space for urban naturalists,” so sayeth the AAM press release. The grand opening is planned for Spring 2016 with limited programming by late fall this year.
The outdoor art moveth The 30 framed reproductions of iconic artwork inside the Akron Art Museum will be moved to new locations this month, including spots in new neighborhoods. (New to the Knight-funded Inside|Out project, not like neighborhoods new to Akron.) Soon, folks in Highland Square, West 36 leaders picked to get their leadership on for Hill, The University of Akron, University Park and the 32nd class of Leadership Akron Cuyahoga Falls will get to enjoy the art. Maps will Out of 90 applicants, 36 emerging leaders were be available throughout the neighborhoods and picked to participate in the year-old “signature at the museum. For more info, visit program” hosted by Leadership Akron. The AkronArtMuseum.org/inside-out. class, which is the organization’s 32nd, includes
The Agenda Taste of Akron | THURSDAY, JULY 23
| Opens July 24 at Nightlight Cinema ($8.50)
30 N High St, Akron Shot entirely on iPhones, “Tangerine” has been an indie flick force since smashing through Sundance. Sin-Dee is on a tear. Fresh out of prison, the trans working girl just learned that her man and pimp, Chester, has been hanging out with another woman, a biological female no less. Whichever one she finds first had better watch out. Alexandra has a nightclub gig to prepare for but sets off with her on a madcap quest that crisscrosses the sun-baked and neon-bathed strip malls and subcultures of Los Angeles. But it’s the empathetic portrayal of its two stigma-busting stars that make this open-hearted ode to outsiders so memorable.
The Golden Age of Restaurants in Summit County | Tuesday, August 18 6:30 pm at the Highland Square library It fits our food theme AND it looks fascinating. Do you remember the days of Themely’s, Yanko’s, The Embers, Marcel’s, Iacomini’s and Sanginiti's? Either way, take a walk down memory lane with Sharon Myers back to the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s when Akron was the place that out-of-towners came to eat. Registration is requested, which you can do by calling 330-376-2927 or visiting the Highland Square Branch Library. If you want to catch this presentation early, go to the Green library on Monday, August 10 at 6:30 pm.
e r u t l u C Arts &
s g n i t s Event Li
“Tangerine” Opens July 24 at The Nightlight Cinema ($8.50) 30 N High St, Akron Sin-Dee is on a tear. Fresh out of prison, the trans working girl just learned that her man and pimp, Chester, has been hanging out with another woman, a biological female no less. Whichever one she finds first had better watch out. Alexandra has a nightclub gig to prepare for but sets off with her on a madcap quest that crisscrosses the sun-baked and neon-bathed strip malls and subcultures of Los Angeles. But it’s the empathetic portrayal of its two stigma-busting stars that make this open-hearted ode to outsiders so memorable. Ohio Shakespeare Festival: Henry V Opens July 30 at Stan Hywet ($15-$33) 714 N Portage Path, Akron Enjoy a wonderful evening of Shakespeare under the stars in the Lagoon area of Stan Hywet, presented in partnership with the Ohio Shakespeare Festival. “Henry V” is set in England in the early 15th century where the political situation in England is tense. In order to gain the respect of the English people and the court, Henry V must live
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
down his wild adolescent past, when he used to consort with thieves and drunkards on the seedy side of London.
What’s your best idea for the arts? We want to hear it! This summer, the Knight Arts Challenge is offering a share of $1 million to the best arts ideas for Akron. Get ready: the challenge opens Aug. 10, and it’s open to everyone. Learn more at KnightArts.org.
Photo courtesy of Downtown Akron Partnership
6pm at Hardesty Park (FREE) | 1615 W Market St, Akron This year marks the 10th anniversary of our most delicious summer event, which kicks off Akron Arts Expo. At the Taste of Akron, you can get the full flavor of Akron by sampling appetizers, entrees, and desserts from over 20 area restaurants, including Papa Joe's, The Beachcomber, Miss Julie's Kitchen, Frank's Place, D'Agnese's, Bombay Grill, Popsmith, Dante Boccuzzi Akron, Stray Dog, Ivan's Deli, Three Sisters Momo, Old Carolina BBQ, Southern Thangs and The Office Bistro. Enjoy great food, beverages and live entertainment by GET ON UP! Food samples cost 1, 2 or 3 tickets. Tickets are $2 each.
Peter Pan Opens July 31 at Weathervane Playhouse ($18) 1301 Weathervane Lane, Akron Broadway's timeless classic musical whisks you away to a place where dreams are born and no one ever grows up! Based on J.M. Barrie's classic tale and featuring an unforgettable score, Peter Pan is one of the most beloved and frequently performed family favorites of all time. This high-flying Tony
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CONNECTING THE ARTS Learning the art of business at
Boston Mills Art Festival
by Katelyn Gainer
Artists don’t have to starve or at least that is what the University of Akron’s Myers School of Art is teaching their students. A new class offered through the school teaches students the business side of being an artist, which is often overlooked in typical art classes.
says she discovered, “I could make a good living.” the July 4 weekend to visit the Emerging Artists booth. Before Later Simms returned to Akron, where she making it over to the Emerging pursued her graduate degree then later became a Artists booth I walked around faculty member at the university. to see what other artists had to offer. When I arrived at the Last year, someone from the Boston Mills Art Myers School of Art booth I was Artists who take the art school route often forget Festival approached Simms and asked if she pleasantly surprised and impressed there are two sides of being an artist—creating wanted to take on an Emerging Artist tent with to say the least. and then selling what you’ve made. Art students her students. Students of the class were invited to often get thrown into the real world not participate in the Annual Boston Mills Art Festival It obvious that the class had taught knowing how to promote or market their at the Brandywine Resort in Peninsula, Ohio for the students what they needed to selves or their art. the weekends of June 26-28 and the dates of know about the business side of July 2–5. being an artist. I spoke to students Jaclyn Hale The Myers School of Art now offers what and Bridget Hoosic to hear what they call the Boston Mills Experience with the “A lot of students don’t even know this is an they learned from the class and the experience. help of professor and artist Sherry Simms. option; usually the gallery is the option that they Simms received her undergraduate degree in have,” Simm explains. “We learn a lot about making art but not the metalsmithing from the University of Akron. business side like making a website and business “When I was in school there was no business For the project, students were expected to cards. It was really helpful how to learn how to tie,” she says. “The idea of selling your work produce a collection of work and showcase to do that kind of thing. When you do graduate was never really mentioned…the emphasis was sell it at the art festival. They had the semester you really are trying to start your own business,” on making the work.” After graduating from the to create the work. They were expected to make Hale tells me. University of Akron she moved to Memphis where business cards, help put the Emerging Artists she started making jewelry and had to start booth together and set-up displays for their work. The Boston Mills Arts Festival gives us real world teaching herself the business side of being an experience. We’ve learned how to make products artist. What she found might surprise most. She I visited the Boston Mills Arts Festival during targeted for specific audiences, branding,
Award-winning musical has been performed around the world and delighted audiences for 60 years, and this run features local young emerging artists.
and desserts from over 20 area restaurants. Enjoy great food, beverages and live entertainment by GET ON UP! Food samples cost 1, 2 or 3 tickets, and tickets are $2 each.
FRIDAY, JULY 24
Michael Trixx 6 pm at Funny Stop Comedy Club ($6) 1757 State Rd, Cuyahoga Falls With a background in music, Michael Trixx combines his two passions, Rock N' Roll and Magic to give an unforgettable performance. Live doves and parakeets appearing and vanishing from thin air, levitations, confetti blizzards, fire magic second to none and his magic bunny "Hocus Pocus" all make for a rockin' good time. Performing through July 25.
Boogers, Witches and Haints: Spooky Stories from Appalachia World Premiere 8 pm at Standing Rock Cultural Arts Center ($15) 300 N Water St, Suite H, Kent In 2013, Wandering Aesthetics’ co-artistic directors completed a thru-hike of the 2,185.9mile Appalachian Trail. But they didn’t come back alone… Master Storyteller Kyle Jozsa leads audiences on a spine-tingling journey into the heart of Appalachia. Intertwining real-life experiences with campfire stories collected on their adventure, Jozsa conjures BOOGERS, WITCHES AND HAINTS off the AT and into the imagination. There are many chills, thrills, and laughs sprinkled throughout this hour-long solo performance. Also being performed July 25, July 31, and Aug 1.
THURSDAY, JULY 23
SATURDAY, JULY 25
WEDNESDAY, JULY 22
Chinese Girls Don’t Swear 7 pm at Akron Civic Theatre ($15) 182 S Main St, Akron Lucy Wang is M.I.T. (Made in Taiwan), but she is no cheap import. Raised on Midwestern beef and corn (Akron, Ohio!), she does her best to follow the Taste of Akron unwritten Asian American handbook and achieve 6 pm at Hardesty Park (FREE) the American Dream. Chinese Girls Don’t Swear is 1615 W Market St, Akron a comedic and searing look at how one Chinese The most delicious event to hit this summer, get the American woman uses her wits to defy, exceed and full flavor of Akron by sampling appetizers, entrees, redefine expectations.
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Geekfest 2015 Mini-ComiCon 12 pm at Main Library (FREE) 60 S High St, Akron Looking for a way to celebrate your geeky obsessions? Here’s your chance! Celebrate your
packing, price points and how important those aspects are too,” Hoosic says. The work and booth was well presented. The students were charming and engaging with their customers. The quality of work was on par if not better than the other professional artists presenting at the festival. I personally left with a few purchases of Mary Clark’s work, which I adore. I can say I’ve found new artists I’ll definitely be supporting in the future and I hope Akron does too.
favorite fandom and participate in trivia, a cosplay contest, DIY crafts, photo ops, and much more.
Akron2Akron: Trapped in a World That They Never Made 3 pm at Cascade Plaza (FREE) S Main and Mill, Akron Akron’s own David Giffels highlights landmarks and key moments in Akron’s history featured in his book, “The Hard Way on Purpose”. The tour wraps up around 4pm at The Lockview for light appetizers. (Photo courtesy of Carissa Russell)
SATURDAY, AUGUST 1
Akron Farm & Flea Market 9 am outside Urban Eats (FREE) 51 E Market St, Akron The first Saturday of every month, head to Urban Eats and Musica for shopping, eating and entertainment that is uniquely Akron. Vendors will change each month and will include rummage, vintage, arts, crafts, farm produce, food and services. Blues & Brews 2 pm at Lock 3 ($40) 200 S Main St, Akron Don’t miss one of Northeast Ohio’s largest craft beer festivals! Sample more than 200 craft beers from 70+ renowned breweries, plus enjoy food from local favorites like Winking Lizard and Wholly Frijoles, as well as live music! A Thing Downtown 4 pm at Downtown Akron (FREE) S Main St, Akron Live music, Crafty Mart vendors, yoga, and a free outdoor movie! Enjoy a summer evening in downtown Akron with refreshments available from the Coffee Pot Cafe and Stray Dog. At 9pm, watch “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure” in the Main Library’s ampitheater. “The Story of Archie Book” Release Party 6 pm at Summit Artspace (FREE) 140 E Market St, Akron Celebrate Christmas in July AND the release of The Devil Strip contributor Joanna Wilson’s book, “The Story of Archie”. Enjoy food from Urban Eats and drinks from Thirsty Dog and NORKA Beverage, and get your book signed!
WEDNESDAY, JULY 29
Knight Arts Challenge Akron Informational Session 5 pm at BLU Jazz+ (FREE) 47 E Market St, Akron The Knight Foundation is just weeks away from launching the first Knight Arts Challenge, which will offer $3 million over three years to the best ideas for the arts in Akron. Join them for Happy Hour on July 29, to meet the people behind the contest and find out more about the challenge. And save the date: the Knight Arts Challenge Akron officially launches August 10.
FRIDAY, JULY 31
Balloon Classic/Beldon-Jackson Music Festival July 31 - August 2 at Kent State Stark (FREE) 6000 Frank Ave NW, North Canton Watch hot air balloons take flight, and enjoy dozens of children’s activities, food vendors, and entertainment! Balloon launches take place on Friday at 7:30pm and 9pm, Saturday at 6:30pm, and Sunday at 6:30am, and fireworks will take place on Saturday at 10pm. Full Blue Moon Hike 8 pm at Hunt House (FREE) 2054 Bolanz Rd, Peninsula Enjoy a 2.2 mile walk along the Towpath Trail to Beaver Marsh under a rare blue moon!
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
Formerly Homeless Foundation 5k 3 pm at Johnny J’s ($20) 1282 Weathervane Lane, Akron johnny J's Pub & Grille has partnered up with Blue Moon for a 5k charity run and pub crawl to benefit The Formerly Homeless Foundation. Proceeds from bar sales and runner registration will be donated to the foundation. The Formerly Homeless Foundation seeks to change misconception about homelessness, and employs those who were homeless to help them build resume and workforce experience. Visit formerlyhomelessfoundation5k. com to register. Downtown Akron Artwalk 5 pm in Downtown Akron (FREE) Experience local art, live music and fun for all ages at the award-winning Artwalk in Downtown Akron. Venues include galleries located in the Northside District, North High Street, and East & West Market St. Don’t forget to stop by Crafty Mart’s Pop Up Shops at Summit Artspace. By the way, a brand new local artist, Madeline O. Horne, will have her first art show at Urban Eats. (She may or may not be publisher Chris Horne’s daughter.)
SUNDAY, AUGUST 2
Slide the City 12 pm at Lock 3 Park ($21) 200 S Main St, Akron 1000 feet of sweet slippery water slide through Downtown Akron, plus proceeds benefit United Way of Summit County! What more convincing do you need?? Summer Lace & Bow Ties Tea & Tour 2 pm at Hower House ($32) 60 Fir Hill, Akron Delicious tea, sweets and savories, followed by an interesting program on the vintage jewelry of five well-known Ohio First Ladies. A walk-through tour of the Hower House and shopping in the delightful Cellar Door Store. Creative and elegant attire encouraged.
Ferdinand Schumacher: Not a Fan of Coats by Joanna Wilson
We all know Quaker Square Schumacher was also on Broadway Street in so cheap he refused to downtown Akron—what purchase insurance. In is now The University of 1886, when a fire (not his Akron residence hall was first) destroyed the entire converted from grain silos. complex of mills including Many of us have visited the eight-story Jumbo Mill, the giant, red waterwheel Schumacher was unable sculpture along the to rebuild. Towpath Trail at Cascade Locks Park, located in the In order to raise funds footprint of one of the to rebuild, Schumacher former mills owned by agreed to merge his cereal Ferdinand Schumacher, the company with several of “Oatmeal King” of Akron. his competitors in order Schumacher’s legacy: Quaker Details of the oat, barley to fix prices and drive Square Residence Hall. and flour company started other businesses out of (Photo: Joanna Wilson) by Schumacher can be the market. The stubborn found on display at the waterwheel as well as Schumacher wasn’t concerned with violating online. But what I find just as fascinating as the anti-trust laws—instead he resisted the business grand cereal empire that began in Akron is the decisions of his new partners, especially wasting colorful character of Schumacher himself. his money on advertising. So he mortgaged most of his holdings in an attempt to buy out German immigrant Ferdinand Schumacher his partners—which left him bankrupt. started his oat, barley, and flour business here becoming the wealthiest man in town after Another contributing factor in his eventual the Civil War. All this, despite being known as bankruptcy was Schumacher’s investments in stubborn, a skinflint, and a strict advocate of starting a temperance town in Tennessee. He temperance. I’m thinking his wallet may have was committed to developing a city that would been his best guarantee for party invitations. give its citizens the opportunity to escape the For example, the history books reveal that temptation of John Barleycorn—thirty one years Schumacher was so frugal that although he was before Prohibition. We all know how well that the richest man in town, he refused to buy an turned out. Schumacher proudly had paid off all overcoat. Ferdinand instead preferred to walk his debts before he died in his E. Market Street Akron’s streets with a tattered shawl pulled up home in 1908. However, the company he had over his head and shoulders throughout our started, officially became Quaker Oats in 1901 cold, long and bitter winters. According to a several years after he was forced out. I guess story shared by his sons, when they arranged that’s how the oatmeal cookie crumbles. an elaborate plan to trick Schumacher into purchasing an overcoat at a big discount, he // Joanna Wilson enjoys writing and researching Akron history, quoting Morrissey lyrics and collecting tattoos. was so delighted with the bargain that he sold the coat to another retailer, preferring a small profit over the warmth of the new coat.
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about how good it is. They also have Bloody Marys topped with everything but the kitchen sink.
Crave Hands down, my favorite burger and fries in town. If Laurie’s on the grill, you’re in awesome hands. Get it doctored to your liking—I go without the crispy onions or aioli in favor of some good ol’ ketchup, mustard, pickle, fresh onion and lettuce on because I want to really taste the burger— and while you can choose from several different cheeses, like Iron Chef Guarnaschelli once said, “Ain’t no cheese meant for a burger like American cheese.” Their steak skewer recipe just changed for the first time in years and for the better. Now they’re more tender and juicier than before.
How this downtown resident, patron and restaurateur eats in Akron by Elizabeth Tyran
Here are some of the hints, must-try-this tips and best-of-Akron recommendations from a woman who really knows local food, Elizabeth Tyran, co-owner of Urban Eats. Whether you want something exotic or a downhome staple, Liz has you covered in her go-to guide. – Chris Horne
Akron Family Restaurant They make a perfect, traditional-style French toast. Not thin or wimpy, over-cooked or stale, and not over-the-top gourmet—just fresh and soft and the perfect thickness, it’s exactly what you want when you want good French toast.
Aladdin’s Three favorite dishes: the grilled tuna salad or the grilled lamb salad with yogurt dressing, which I blend with a little of their house hot sauce, and the flavor savor plate (again with a side of hot sauce). Everything there is good, and everything there is even better with their hot sauce.
dba Its chic, modern decor comes complete with brocade patterned walls and chandeliers but with bold dark colors for an even more dramatic look. I also love that there are distinct areas that feel like little rooms. The contemporary-style patio features an indoor/outdoor bar and fireplace that’s equally inviting. It’s easy to feel like you’re having a glamorous night out in a bigger city when you’re here.
Chin’s Place Yellow curry tofu stir fry, or the Peking shrimp, which proves very sweet plus medium heat equals damn good. Frank’s Place The dark, dive bar atmosphere is a sharp contrast with warmth and charm of its t-shirt covered walls, strings of red and green and blue Christmas lights hung overhead and the signature not-so-small toy airplane that hovers over the bar with a tiny version of Frank at the helm.
Cilantro If you’re downtown and need a Thai food fix, you can’t go wrong with any of their coconut curry stir-fry dishes. If you want to plan an evening out with friends make a reservation for a table on their patio, it’s a lovely little spot that a lot of people don’t even realize is there. Then really impress your guests by ordering the sushi-filled wooden boat for your party.
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
Hanini’s Best gyro for your buck.
La Loma I know a lot of you still need to try this little authentic Mexican gem and you’re gonna think tacos, as you should, but try the torta and always use the fresh lime with either.
Lockview Known for grilled cheese, of course, but I know people who get the fish taco (wrap) every time they go because they love it so much. I’m also a fan of the garden burger, well-balanced with the aioli and roasted red peppers that they add and the saltiness from the burger goes really well with a side of sweet potato fries.
Michael Trecasso’s/Mary Coyle’s On the dessert end, try Jack’s Maple Marvel Sundae. But don’t just think ice cream, think pizza too. Dare I say it, might be the best in town. Gasoline Alley Get a large Reuben pizza and bring some friends to help you eat it. Then you’ll also have people to talk
(continued on page 26)
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
ome partnerships just seem natural (peanut butter and jelly, macaroni and cheese, Hall and Oates, etc.) and then there are perfect pairings that take some time to warm up to before you realize they were meant to be together. (Think Harold and Maude or sea salt and caramel.) Yoga and beer might seem to fall into that latter category, but if you try it out, you’ll see that they really do flow together.
by Brit Charek and Mathias Noble King originally published at AkronEmpire.com and updated for The Devil Strip
at Thirsty Dog Brewing Co.
BALANCE & BREWS
"Yoga and beer ARE traditionally seen as two different lifestyles, and that's precisely why I like pairing them," says Balance & Brews founder Melissa Klimo-Major, who hosts yoga and beer events all over Northeast Ohio. "I don't think things have to be 'labeled' or fit neatly into only one box. I get the most out of my yoga practice when I back off and surrender a bit. When enjoyed responsibly, our guards come down and we are open to chat with the person sitting next to us at a brewery bar. We know at the very least we have that beer in common. It helps bridge a connection. And then you start to see that these two things actually are not that different... they're both creating unity, they're creating a like-minded tribe." Balance & Brews events offer all-levels yoga in an unassuming environment (typically a brewery or a tasting room) so that anyone can feel welcome, even if you are dragged there by your wife and might be the only dude in the room. After 60 minutes of practice, participants awake from their savasana refreshed to enjoy beers and a group brewery tour where new friends are sure to be made.
through July 26th. Follow @balanceandbrews to get the details and stroll through the #yogaandbeer hashtag to check out the entries so far. You might see a few of ours!
THEIR NEXT AKRON EVENT IS WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 12TH AT THIRSTY DOG BREWING COMPANY. To register, visit www.balanceandbrews.com. And what should you order after your hour of practice? Klimo-Major recommends Citra Dog.
"[It's] a current favorite staple! I normally prefer a piney hop over citrus but this one is perfectly brewed and I really love it."
// Mathias Noble King is a dude with a beard who likes drinking, brewing, and talking about beer. You can follow him on Untappd at NobleInterest. // Brit Charek is Mathias’s SWMBO. (That’s homebrew forum speak for She Who Must Be Obeyed.) The whole operation would fall apart without her. The two of them live with their 6-year-old son, Holden, and their pet rat, Richard.
The classes at Thirsty Dog are taught by Kara Sullivan, an Akron native who developed a love for yoga on the West Coast which she brought home to share with others. With her day job being the Northeast Ohio Sales Specialist for Deschutes Brewery, she's more than excited to combine her love of yoga with her love of craft beer. Kara also has an assistant, Sarah, who floats around the class and discretely corrects participants’ poses, which is perfect if you’re a newbie or a little rusty in your practice. "B&B's original business plan was to be a supplemental side job to compliment my studio teaching but it grew into something really big really quick," says Klimo-Major. Right now, they are working with Mikki Trowbridge Yoga in Oregon to promote the beer yogi community coast to coast through an Instagram challenge taking place now
JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 /
THE Devil Strip |
food and Culture
of the New
Breakfast Club How local early birds are building community over breakfast
Akron is filled with both delicious breakfast options and a significant number of creatives who are passionate about their work and their city, which helps explain why there has been a sudden takeoff in the “breakfast club” trend. Each breakfast club has a different objective but each exists to bring Akron together to create an empowering community.
A is for Akron Tech Breakfast Over breakfast, this group, started by Jonathan Knapp, talks about the local tech community. Knapp, who runs a web development consultancy called Coffee and Code, is also the force behind Akron.io, whose mission is “Connecting the unconnected and promoting Akron's tech community.” It’s also the heart of the Tech Breakfasts.
by Jessica Conti
You may also recognize Knapp from our Big Ideas issue regarding the Akron Kitchen Community, an effort to open a shared commercial kitchen space and help Akron's food businesses succeed by creating a network of local entrepreneurs who can
Midwest Muse’s Best Bets for Breakfast by Jessica Conti
When it comes to breakfast or brunch, Akron is a city that does not disappoint. From the gourmet to the hole in the wall diners—we’ve got it all. Here are a few local spots that I think will undoubtedly satisfy your tastebuds and prove worthy of your money and time.
AKRON FAMILY 250 W Market St., Akron Go-to dish: The #1 (two pancakes or toast, two eggs, coffee, and orange juice for under $8) >> Akron Family is probably my favorite breakfast place in all of Akron. They have the vibe of a diner, but with the quality of a four star breakfast joint. The menu is huge, the service impeccable, and the prices are unbeatable. The wait is never long and your coffee will never be empty. BLUE DOOR BAKERY & CAFE 1970 State Rd., Cuy Falls Go-to dish: Tartines >> The Blue Door is not your average breakfast joint. You won’t find the standard biscuits and gravy on the menu, but you will find beautiful handcrafted dishes made from fresh ingredients. The set menu is relatively small but satisfying. From tartines (D.I.Y. crêpes) to Monte Cristo sandwiches to the standard eggs & bacon, you won’t leave hungry. The daily specials rotate and will without a doubt blow your mind. In addition to the insanely beautiful and high quality food, they serve Angel Falls coffee and some of the most delectable European-style artisan bakery treats.
BURNTWOOD TAVERN 2291 Riverfront Pkwy., Cuy Falls Go-to dish: Breakfast Burrito >> Burntwood Tavern might just have the best brunch in town. For starters, it’s absolutely beautiful inside and they have a wonderful patio. If booze is your thing, they have a top notch Bloody Mary bar. The brunch menu is very small, but has a just enough to satisfy. EYE OPENER 1688 W Market St., Akron Go-to dish: Build-your-own omelette >> The Eye Opener has the alcohol appeal that most breakfast places in the area do not. So, if booze with breakfast is your thing, this is your place. The menu is decently sized, diversified, and delicious. Not exactly the place for large groups or the impatient. FLURY’S CAFÉ 2202 Front St., Cuy Falls Go-to dish: Pumpkin pancakes >> Flury’s is as delicious as they are tiny. The restaurant maybe seats thirty people, but the wait is never too long. Delicious and efficient. Though, they’re “cash only” and closed on Sunday’s which take them down a few notches. Luckily, the food is good enough to bring you back.
learn from each other. He’s doing this with his wife Ashley, a chef, who you can meet on page 18. Knapp has been organizing web meetups for a while now and he says he noticed that people felt intimidated when they didn’t know enough on a certain topic or if they knew too much on another topic. He wants the Akron Tech Breakfast to eliminate that intimidation by fostering an environment where people of all backgrounds feel comfortable enough to discuss their expertise while connecting with new and familiar people. The conversations are unstructured and meant to include anyone that wants to join regardless of their personal history. Knapp explains, “I wanted to help achieve diversity in our area's tech sector. No matter our title at work, we're all people and can contribute to a greater conversation.” For more information about how to get involved, visit akron.io or go to meetup.com/akron-io (continued on page 26)
FRED’S DINER 930 Home Ave., Akron Go-to dish: #8 Three Egg Cheese Omelette, Homefries, Toast & Jelly >> Oh, Fred’s. Fred’s is 100% the greasy spoon of Akron. It’s a real tiny gem that does not disappoint when a classic diner is what you’re looking for. ON TAP 3263 State Rd., Cuy Falls Go-to dish: Veggie Skillet Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 8:00AM - 12:00 PM >> Surprise! On Tap is typically known for their unlimited popcorn and dinners, but they recently started serving breakfast and you need to try it. It’s delicious, cheap, and incredibly filling. The service is great too.
SWEET PEA CAFÉ 117 Merz Blvd., Fairlawn Go-to dish: California Omelet >> Sweet Pea is a lot like the standard chain breakfast joints you’ll find in most cities—but it’s better. The menu is expansive and accommodating to most diets. While the service can be slow, they certainly make up for it in portion sizes and prices. WALLY WAFFLE 845 W Market., Akron Go-to dish: Apple Cinnamon Waffle >> I’m in love with waffles, but I am not in love with Wally Waffle. The waffles aren’t special but the variety and the ability to order half a waffle is. They have other breakfast foods to satisfy most everyone, even those without a sweet tooth.
Coffee by Noor Hindi and Sarah Stubbs
Food & Culture
Quest Akron’s food favorites submitted by the extended Devil Strip family
Whether we were enjoying an impromptu pizza stop at Davinci’s, walking into the Bomb Shelter for the first time or learning about how coffee is roasted, our quest to discover the many faces of Akron coffee lead us on many detours. The diversions we took defined our journey. For us, this was more than just a search for a cup of Joe. It was a way to discover how these shops uniquely fit and characterize the ever-expanding city we love. There’s more to tell about these shops—their history and their people—but for now, this will do to get us started. – Noor & Sarah
What’s your favorite overlooked Akron dish? “Papa Joe's 1932 Express.” – Dave Lieberth
Sarah: I felt like I was at The Hub with the cast of “That ‘70s Show” when I walked into Crest Bakery and saw two rows of bright orange booths and other psychedelicallydated features. That is, until the sweet woman behind the counter began boasting about Crest Bakery’s family history and amazing treats. And that’s what I immediately loved about this place. It screams tradition. I asked her which of the cookies they sell is her favorite, which resulted in sharing three peanut butter sugar cookies with Noor and our friend Mariah over a quick cup of coffee since they were about to close.
Noor: This quick fix coffee spot inside downtown’s Fifth Third Bank building is perfect for the 9-5 shifter who is looking for a decent lunch and coffee, or perhaps a quiet place to sit with a co-worker. The calm atmosphere is also a great way to come back to yourself if you’ve had a particularly stressful day at work. The large windows overlooking South Main Street offer ample people-watching opportunities whilst eating your house salad. Sarah: Quiet, corporate and homemade chocolate chip cookies—these are three subjects that come to mind first about 121 Cafe. It obviously isn’t a hipster hangout like others on our list may be, but it offers downtown office workers the option of either getting a quick coffee and a treat to-go or kicking back on modern, chic stools to relax for a little while.
Angel Falls Noor: Angel Falls is my personal home away from home. The outdoor seating area with the free little library, along with the comfortable couches and the strong smell of coffee puts me in a relaxed mood. Being an equal tea and coffee fanatic, I love their unique and large selection of teas lining the back wall.
Damascus Road Café
Sarah: Angel Falls Rocks. It’s my go-to place to sit down and have some me-time with my books and journals and laptop, so I’m a tad biased, but AF really has helped make Highland Square one of my favorite parts of Akron. The environment is so dynamic—it’s perfect for being alone, catching up with friends and/or meeting new people. The funky furniture and sweet drinks and pastries cannot be matched. After a good week of workouts, I always reward myself with one of their sugar cookies that is literally the size of my face and wash it down with a cinnamon latte.
Noor: I loved the family feel of this coffee shop. Although I expected it would be more corporate, their coffee tasted great and the staff really gets to know their customers. I felt welcome, and their menu is full of goodies and changes frequently. I’m a sucker for sitting in booths, so this was a win for me. (continued on page 23)
“EVERYTHING at Nepali Kitchen (recently the chow mein and samosas).” – Kate Yu “Mock Duck Basil at Cilantro.” – Alicia Wagner “The Pickled Henry at Edgar's. (Drinks are dishes, right?)” – Nate White “My fave ‘secret’ item is actually a cocktail, Rose's Gimlet at Ken Stewart's Grille.” – Beth Hemmelgarn “The Pho at Thai Pho Cuisine.” – Benjamin Rexroad “The most underappreciated restaurant (where all the dishes are divine) is La Loma in Ellet.” - Anne Harmon “Chicken Paprikash at the New Era.” – Bob Ferguson “Ravioli at Luigi's!” – Cathy Kemp Erisey “My favorite underappreciated dish/snack is the fried pepperoni at Lockview downtown. That's a delicious little morsel that I can't get enough of.” – Melissa Markulis “Mandarin chicken carryout special at Chin's Place.” – Mordecai Jones “Burnt cheese foldover from the basement.” – Rick Stockburger “Most underappreciated dish: Jojos at Showcase Meats, which itself is a hidden Akron gem.” – Liz Yokum “My favorite hidden gem is Sushi Katsu in the valley.” – Sandra Emmeline
Crest Bakery Noor: Being at Crest Bakery feels a lot like being at your grandmother’s house—everything smells like detergent, the décor seems straight out of the 70s or 80s, and there are lots of sugary treats, namely homemade cakes and cookies. More unique still, Crest sells its very own branded root beer, which we enjoyed sipping after a hot day.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 /
THE Devil Strip |
THE POWER OF FOOD by Holly Brown
Once I started writing for the Devil Strip, I was really able to get to the core (or gut as it were) of the things that got me to love Akron: the sense of community, the food and the conversations that surround that food. I like to think that this has made me a pretty good ambassador of Akron, the kind of person who can convince other people of Akron’s greatness, the kind of person who can convince her boyfriend to become an Akronite himself (spoiler alert: that’s what happened). One of the cornerstones of my relationship with my boyfriend Ryan is food. We love to eat. We love to go out to eat. We love to cook for ourselves. We love to talk about what we eat and why we like it. We love to experiment with ingredients and techniques. We love to try new foods and share the same favorite things (most notably steak and cheeses of all kinds). Our various dreams include: to open a winery-brewery-ice cream shop, to travel the world as shandy-sampling vagabond poet food writers, to open our own diner that serves only
breakfast food and nothing else (breakfast food is bestest food).
(typically breakfast or dinner) and one home meal in order to keep our hunger at bay.
affectionately say that I knew Ryan was the guy for me when he was impressed rather than horrified.
For the last year that I’ve lived in Akron, I have been slowly trying to convince Ryan to move to this hidden gem of a culinary hotbed. I like to think I was relatively sneaky about it. I needed to make sure that he wanted to be here as much as I did. If you guessed that I used food as my weapon of attack, you are very correct.
Ryan’s visits, though he didn’t exactly know it, were under very careful consideration. How do I make the Akron food scene look better than any other? Having my own food column certainly didn’t hurt my chances. The week after my first Wanderer article dropped was the week that Ryan told me he was going to move to Akron in July.
Our first meal as co-Akronites? The Lamp Post Diner.
I literally scheduled Ryan’s visits around food. I like to think there is an artistry in developing a food tour similar to creating a batting lineup for a baseball team. Day one: make waffles at home, order takeout from Chin’s Place. Day two: egg scramble at home, pizza from Luigi’s. Day three: Cheesecapade at West Point Market (that is, sampling and buying much cheese for home indulgence with a bottle of wine) and dinner at Crave. You get the picture. I would literally write down my list of places to go and strategize. I made sure that we didn’t eat in places that were too similar or too filling in one day. That is, we could either fit in a moderately sized breakfast and dinner in one day OR we could have one super meal
As you may have noticed—or not, summer moves pretty fast—July is upon us. Ryan moved into my Highland Square Apartment with me just three days ago, as I write this. Now that everyone knows how seriously I plan my meals, you may be wondering “where was the first place you took him as a real Akronite?” To that, I have to say that there was nothing for us except breakfast. Our first date was at the Hideaway Cafe in Colton, NY. We ordered the same thing: coffee and the Number 4: two pancakes, two eegs, meat, home fries, toast. I ate the whole damn thing with chocolate chip pancakes and bacon and eggs over easy with American cheese and I like to
It’s exactly what you want in a diner: everything centered around the kitchen. It smells like you are inside of a griddle and you can watch your meal come into being from anywhere in the place (except for maybe the outdoor seating area). The menu has all of your classic combinations. I ordered something similar to that of our first date: French toast, bacon, eggs over easy with American cheese. Ryan got steak, with homemade gravy, eggs over easy, hash browns, and white toast. Both of us killed every last thing on our plate (I thoroughly enjoy making egg, cheese, and bacon breakfast sandwiches with French toast… seriously, try it out). It was diner food at its best: quick, greasy, comfortable. Ryan commented specifically on the hash browns, saying they were crispy but not hard (very important). We sipped our coffee with full bellies and reveled in the food of our city.
A MEAL DOWN MEMORY LANE:
AKRON RESTAURANTS YOU MISS MOST Most missed................................................................... Dodie’s 2nd.............................................................................Lou & Hy's 3rd..........................................................................Jack Horner’s 4th........................................................................... Two Amigos Honorable mentions: Country Kitchen Diner, Nick Anthe's, Egg Castle, Sangeniti's, Trecaso's, Casa Mimi, Scotto’s, Original New Era, Around the Clock, Carousel Dinner Theatre, Vegiterranean,Meeker's Kitchen, Brendan & Finn's, Cannova's, Lujan's, Art’s Place, Zeppo’s, The Fiesta Room, Kaase's, The Garden Grille, The Brown Derby, Iacomini's, Phelps, Martini's, Covered Bridge Lounge, The Other Place, Little Joe's Pub, Balluns, Yoconno's, Huckleberrys, Jacob Goode
What restaurant do you miss the most? “I miss Dodie's in Highland Square! It was THE BEST breakfast spot in Akron. In fact, it was part of the reason I moved to Akron, and more specifically, Highland Square.” – Sarah Neff “Grappa in Fairlawn Town Center when James Scot Jones was chef.” – Tamara Mitchell “I miss Market Street Cafe and their chicken pesto pizza.” – Gretchen Hendryx Gallimore “Carousel Dinner Theatre was cool. Wish we had something like that again.” - Nichole Booker
“I miss eating with my mom after a day of shopping downtown at O'Neil's in the Georgian Room. Also, Tommy's Pizza on Damon Street.” – Stephanie Donovan “OK… and for the best least expensive stick-to-your-ribs breakfast, lunch or dinner, for a few brief years in the 1960s, there was Phelps. Kinda like Fred's without a published menu. Don't think I ever broke so much as a dollar bill there unless I took a date. (And, Reader, she married me.)” – Mark Auburn “(Most missed restaurant) would have to be Jack Horner's. Used to go there as a kid after church, plus my friend called it ‘The Horney Clown’ because of the weird man it had as its logo.” – Greg Milo “I miss Nick Anthes on Main—their amazing Chicken Winston dish!” – Nadine Desimone
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
the Food Truck?!
. F L E S R U O Y FOEUERISDH OUR COMMUNITY. N
Why food trucks are not popping up all over Akron like they have elsewhere by Greg Milo
“Five Cubans all day!” Megan shouted to our cook, as she raced to prepare the orders. The line at the window snaked as far as I could see, but my attention was on the guy in front of me ordering another three Cuban sandwiches. I realized after I took the order that I forgot to write the dude’s name on the order sheet, which was going to make it awkward when I started calling for the guy with the red shirt. “Red shirt! Your order’s up!” Five people in red shirts turned to look.
a residence, 1000 feet of a school or 200 feet of a permanent food service (aka - a restaurant). Former Akron Deputy Mayor David Lieberth, who was involved in the food truck debate when it first began, tried to shed light on the thinking behind the ordinance. “Where do the trucks park on Main Street? What time do we allow them to block the street? How many spaces do we block off? Who pays for the lost revenue of the meters?” Lieberth asks, recalling some of the questions the city faces regarding food trucks.
Last summer, I worked on the Beachcomber food truck. As the vegan-on-board, I mainly played cashier, doing little to aid in the flipping of beef on the steaming grill. I was the novice, though I was pretty awesome at dropping fries into the deep fryer. Not to mention, Lieberth says, restaurants like The Lockview have made “significant investments” There’s not much glamour in working a food to their permanent locations, on which they pay truck. It’s greasy and sweaty and can be outright property taxes, unlike food trucks. Their investment exhausting when it’s booming. At the same time, is measured in time, too. Restaurants often open it’s exhilarating—not just for those racing inside early and stay open late five, six and seven days the cramped quarters of the truck, but also for the a week but food trucks swoop in for prime lunch customers who are enjoying something different. hours. “Food trucks would skim the cream off the We set up mainly at special events or at a business top of the profit,” Lieberth says. that had requested we stop by during their lunch break. Neel disagrees. “We don’t compete with restaurants. We have no air conditioning. We have no restrooms. Food Truck Fridays, in the parking lot of Child When we’re out, we’re out, and we leave. Thinking Guidance and Family Solutions, are a melding of the we’re competition is absurd.” two—something of an event itself set up on private property—and a great example of food trucks You have to wonder how many of the 400 to 600 in action. people at Food Truck Fridays are leaving downtown altogether at lunch and how many, had the food “It’s been great,” says Tiffany Jamison, who helps trucks been on Main Street instead, would have organize the event. “It’s brought awareness to Child wandered out of a long food truck line and into a Guidance and what we do.” restaurant. A fundraiser for Child Guidance, Jamison says Food Truck Fridays attract 400 to 600 people each week, and with about 20 trucks rotating in and out during the summer, customers are treated to a variety. For food truck fans, events like Food Truck Fridays are a work-around because the city of Akron isn’t exactly food truck friendly. While privately-owned businesses can allow trucks on their property during lunch hours, using public space can be a challenge for food truck owners.
What of the summer festivals that shut down Main Street, setting up rows of out-of-town vendors with their backs to locals like Baxter’s and The Lockview? Are downtown restaurants busier or emptier because of the crowds drawn to events like the Rib, White & Blue Festival? Does it hurt or help the eateries further away from Lock 3 and what would the impact be if food trucks had a regular day—say, a Monday—when they could set up for lunch?
This debate is happening all across the nation. Regardless, city restrictions certainly won’t change “The license fee is upwards of $2000 to operate on this season. Perhaps the next mayor will jumpstart the city streets deemed appropriate (by the city),” the conversation, leading to some new ideas. Until says Judy Neel of the Stone Pelican Rolling Cafe food then, food truck foodies will keep getting their fix at truck. “And none of them have high foot traffic.” Food Truck Fridays and other nearby round-ups and festivals. In Cleveland, the fee is a little over $400. But it’s not just cost-prohibitive in Akron. The city ordinance But what about me? Where’s my vegan food truck? restricts food trucks from operating within 50 feet of
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JOIN US AS THE AREA’S BEST FOOD TRUCKS SERVE UP SCRUMPTIOUS LUNCHES AND TREATS TO SUPPORT CHILD GUIDANCE & FAMILY SOLUTIONS.
EVERY FRIDAY 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
THROUGH AUGUST 28
18 NORTH FORGE ST. IN AKRON. (AT THE CORNER OF EAST MARKET ST.)
Follow Akron Food Truck Friday on Facebook for weekly specials and a list of food trucks who will be serving. CGFS_FTF_DS-Ad.indd 1
7/2/15 12:37 PM
out and about
I scream for ice cream
…because I get so excited about ice cream (Or, How to enjoy Akron’s great ice cream and its great outdoors)
........................ by Katie Wheeler
In high school, I had to give a presentation about what I wanted to be when I grow up. It was in one of those classes where they’re prepping you for college by making you think long and hard about your future. While my friends painstakingly weighed the pros and cons of becoming a doctor instead of an engineer, it took me minutes to figure out what I wanted to be—an ice cream taste tester. Hey, I know what I’m passionate about! I also realized a little later in life that I’m passionate about being active, which is probably a really good thing for the amount of ice cream I consume. I’m sure that you’re aware there are great places to get cones and sundaes within the radius of just a few miles of Akron, but what you might not realize is that each of those ice cream shops are within miles of diverse ways to burn off the extra energy that comes along with a cone full of sugar.
MARY COYLE’S ICE CREAM AND GOLF: This Highland Square legend is a short drive from a number of places where you can work up an appetite by chasing a golfball across freshly manicured greens. Valley View Golf Club, Mud Run Golf Course and Good Park Golf Course are all great public courses in the area—and great places to earn your ice cream. BIGGINS’ BIG DIP AND HIKING: Located in the Portage Lakes, Biggins’ is usually associated with swimming and boating, but this tasty location is also just a couple miles from Firestone Metro Park. The park has beautiful shaded trails that wind next to the Tuscarawas River and around Little Turtle Pond, and is the perfect place to hike up an appetite.
STRICKLAND’S FROZEN CUSTARD AND WATER SKIING: As a little kid, I associated Strickland’s with going to the Soapbox Derby or the Rubber Bowl, but if you’re looking for a great way to earn your sundae, Springfield Lake is right down the road. The lake permits waterskiing daily, and there’s nothing like a water sport to remind you of how good ice-cream can taste. There’s also an exercise park with low impact equipment at Springfield Lake Park, the first of its kind in Ohio. DURBIN’S MAGIC FREEZE AND BIKING: Durbin’s, an ice-cream staple in Barberton, sits less than two miles from the Wolf Creek Trailhead of the Towpath. This area is perfect for biking, and whether you head south towards Clinton, or north into downtown, you can work up quite a sweet tooth along Towpath Trail.
PAV’S CREAMERY AND DISC GOLF: Right down the road from this Portage Lakes favorite, Portage Lakes State Park is a great place to swim and play sand volleyball. Lesser known though, is the fact that there’s also a full 18-hole disc golf course that runs throughout the park. Maintained by the Portage Lakes Disc Golf Association, which hosts scrambles every Thursday, this is a unique way to get some fresh air and get rid of some energy.
With all of the amazing ice cream in Akron, it’s a good thing that we have so many amazing ways to stay active in our city. Try a new workout, Akron—but remember it’s summer so grab a scoop while you’re out! WWW.THEDEVILSTRIP.COM
Food & Cultures
Talking Corn WITH METROPOLIS POPCORN
What this PlaCe neeDs is healthy fooD for eVeryone.
by Audrey Quinn
Got a craving for both cake and popcorn at the same time? Okay, how about Girl Scout cookies and popcorn? If that describes you and you haven’t yet found Metropolis Popcorn, you should plan a trip to Front Street Mall in Cuyahoga Falls. Metropolis Popcorn serves the local community but also ships their 50+ flavors across the nation over 50 flavors of popcorn, ranging from the simple (bacon and cheese) to the bizarre (green apple). Their three biggest sellers are Puppy Chow, Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup and Super Three Cheese. Yes… Puppy Chow. “Our most unique flavors are lime margarita, lemonade and dill pickle,” says cashier and popcorn enthusiast Sydney Trathen. While these flavors aren’t the most popular, Trathen says, “you get those customers that are like, ‘that’s my favorite!’”
Fans of their unique popcorn flavors can order online in bulk and ship anywhere in the United States. Customers can sample any flavors they want, and there is a loyalty program where signing in for six purchases gets a free medium popcorn. Prices range for small bags from $3 for a seasoned flavor bag to $5 for a deluxe flavor bag. Tins start at $11 and can be refilled for $6. A special promotion for the summer time includes an initial $5 purchase of a refillable cup and allows the customer unlimited refills on Fridays from May to September, perfect for the frequent Riverfront visitors. Fans who like the Facebook page can also enter to win free popcorn on Tuesdays, as well as vote on which flavors they would like to see in the store. A recent poll asked users to vote for which Christmas-time flavor they would like to come back for a limited time in July.
Flavors come and go throughout the year, depending on seasonal preferences. All recipes start with Ohio-grown popcorn and are popped in small, five-gallon batches to ensure freshness for customers. The popcorn is popped in 100% pure coconut oil. The location of Metropolis Popcorn works well for the business, which sees an influx of traffic from summertime Riverfront events such as IROK and the Irish Festival. On these days, Trathen said there’s a line out the door. Inside, a map is dotted with pins representing customers from 48 other states, and even other countries, who have visited the store on trips to see family and friends. “We had someone from Lorain drive an hour just to try our popcorn,” says Trathen.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
United Way is a champion for healthy food for all in Summit County. We believe that nutritious food should be available to everyone, regardless of income. So we partner with many nonprofit organizations to promote equal access to healthy, high-quality food.
Join us at the table. Volunteer. If you have a passion for healthy food education, access and policy, connect with the United Way Volunteer Center to find ways to get involved with amazing programs and people in your community. Whether you have just one evening to help out a community garden, want to volunteer weekly at a farmers’ market or can spend some time in an office supporting a program, you can become a part of the solution.
Current volunteer opportunities: 1. Help with planting, weeding, watering and harvesting at an urban farm or community garden 2. Lend support to a weekly farmer’s market 3. Organize a healthy food drive 4. Deliver meals to seniors in their homes 5. Mentor kids on nutrition and exercise Many more projects are available! Contact the United Way Volunteer Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 330.643.5512 for a complete list of opportunities or search our online volunteer project database at uwsummit.org. Under ‘Take Action,’ click the Volunteer link, and then the link for food-related opportunities. Nonprofits – contact the Volunteer Center to add your project.
2164 Riverfront Parkway, Cuyahoga Falls Monday-Saturday, 11 am-8 pm Sun 12 pm-6 pm
beCause Great thinGs haPPen When We liVe uniteD. United Way of Summit County uWsuMMit.orG
food & Culture
Spirits are Alive at Renaissance Artisan Distillers by Brittany Nader
The craft beer scene is booming in Greater Akron as locals embrace the complex flavors and creative offerings of the numerous breweries in the area. Now, those with a higher tolerance for their preferred alcoholic beverages are in luck. Akron’s first commercial distillery has opened its doors, and business is booming.
NUEVO MODERN MEXICAN & TEQUILA BAR
RESERVATIONS RECOMMENDED FOR SEATING BUT ADVENTURESOME TASTE BUDS REQUIRED FOR DINING
"My first visit to Nuevo was AMAZING!! I was blown away with our very knowledgeable and attentive bartender. Going into this dinner I would never order tequila (except in a margarita), I was glancing at the tequila list when Eric (our great bartender) stopped by to walk us through aging, and tasting notes on some of his favorite tequilas. He was so passionate about these tequilas I agreed to try some. He poured a couple tasters of his favorite tequilas for my friends and I, and I couldn't believe how delicious they were... ...Now it was time to order dinner and again we went with his favs. I got scallops while my friends got tacos with shrimp, and a burrito with chorizo and pears! Everything was right on. This is not your typical Mexican restaurant (not that there's anything wrong with them) but the food here definitely had a lot of time and thought put into it. All in all everything was great! I will be back!" - Danielle S. in Akron, OH on July 15, 2015
54 East Mill St. Akron 44308 (330) 762-8000 nuevomodmex.com Hours: M-Th 11-10, F 11-11, Sat 3-11
Renaissance Artisan Distillers operates adjacent to Grape and Granary, the one-stop shop where local home brewers and winemakers load up on all their supplies and ingredients. The creation of the distillery was a natural progression for John Pastor and Ron Petrosky, two avid brewers who were eager to give Akronites high spirits and homegrown artisanal liquor options. Pastor, who co-owns Grape and Granary with his family, has become a working expert in the art of distilling. Through his years running Grape and Granary, he has witnessed craft beer enthusiasts evolve from curious shoppers to owners of successful local breweries like Thirsty Dog and Hoppin’ Frog. Inspired by their drive to take their love of the craft to a commercial level, he and Petrosky began attending conferences around the globe to stay apprised of industry trends and learn tricks of the trade from seasoned distillers.
“The name Renaissance comes from a resurgence of interest in artisan spirits,” Pastor says. “People’s tastes are changing. They prefer local and quality over the mass produced. Mass-produced products just don’t have a lot of character.” Pastor and Petrosky agree that having a deep understanding of beer and wine making has been essential in the development of the rich, vibrant flavors of their craft spirits. Visitors will instantly taste the difference between big-name liquors they’re used to, like Jim Beam or Jack Daniels, and the unique flavor fusions in the local distillery’s single-malt whiskey, gin or brandy. Developing these kinds of high-quality spirits is truly a science, and one look at the still and set up of the operation conjures images of mad scientists or chefs working tirelessly to develop the perfect formula or recipe for their creations. Renaissance Artisan Distillers’ goods are made from as many local ingredients as its operators can get their hands on. Its grappa, a spicy, fruity Italian spirit, is produced from soaked grape skins given to the distillers from nearby Viking Vineyards. The vanilla and caramelized sugar used for its Crooked Cannon coffee liqueur are both made in house. Special time and care go into each of the distillery’s
food & Culture
the most “Akron”
RESTAURANTS FOR BREAKFAST, LUNCH & DINNER?
Most Akron Breakfast 1st ......................................................................................................................................... Fred’s 2nd ............................................................................................................................Akron Family 3rd ............................................................................................................................. Wally Waffle 4th ............................................................................................................ Valley Café & Blue Door Honorably mentioned: Eye Opener, The Lamp Post, the Waterloo, Eat n’ Run, Molly Brown’s
Most Akron Lunch 1st .................................................................................................................................. Swensons 2nd .................................................................................................................................... Skyway 3rd (tie) ............................................................................................... Urban Eats & The Lockview 4th (tie) .....................................................................................Diamond Deli & La Loma Taqueria Honorably mentioned: Rockne’s, The Ido, The Rail, Papa Joe’s, Bob's Hamburg, Front Porch Café, Taste of Bangkok, DeViti’s, Aladdin’s, The Merchant, Mustard Seed Market & Café, Taqueria Rancheros, The Office, Ripper’s Rock House, Thai Pho Cuisine, Stray Dog Cart
Most Akron Dinner 1st ........................................................................................................................................ Luigi’s 2nd (tie) ...............................................................................................................Nuevo & Primo’s 3rd ........................................................................................................................................Crave 4th ........................................................................................................................... Diamond Grill Honorably mentioned: Gasoline Alley, Vasili's, Bricco, El Ranchero’s , Dontino's, Edgar’s, Chowder House, Parasson’s, Old 97 Café, Mr. Zubs, The Waterloo, Mi Casa Mexican, Spaghetti Warehouse, Mr. Gs, Nepali Kitchen, New Era
products, from month-long soaking of fruits and herbs to yearlong barrel aging of its flavorful and aromatic whiskey.
embraced by the local community, there is a good chance enthusiasts could soon see new high-quality offerings widely available across the region.
“Making everything under one roof means you won’t have to worry about extra expenses,” Petrosky says.
“No one has been able to find another commercial distillery in Akron’s history,” Pastor says. “We love the creative aspect of it, and we think people are going to be really surprised when they try it.”
This is especially important for the distillers as they work to get their spirits into local bars and restaurants. Right now, the artisan offerings are only available for sampling and purchase at the distillery’s location on Home Avenue. The operators are currently working on developing a barrelaged rum, in addition to their current offerings, which they hope to have completed and bottled in the next month. The goal is to make enough of each type of spirit for distribution. Ohio laws are stringent about the sale of craft spirits, limiting purchases from distilleries to 1.5 liters or four quarter-ounce samples per customer per day. “We also have to have a distribution point,” Pastor says, “You can’t just take spirits to a bar or restaurant like you can with beer or wine.” Despite the current limitations with the availability of its products, Pastor and Petrosky are optimistic about the distillery’s future. Spirits are already flying off the shelves–with their limoncello, whiskey and Route 8 gin being the most popular offerings–and as the distillery grows, so will its output of craft liquor. Laws in the state have become a bit more lax in recent years, allowing the passionate brewers to open and operate the distillery in the first place. As craft spirits continue to rise in popularity and are
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
Renaissance Artisan Distillers is located at 915 Home Ave in North Hill. Locals can stop in to the tasting room to sample the latest craft spirits, or sip on wine from Grape and Granary if that’s more their style. Pastor and Petrosky are more than willing to share their extensive knowledge of spirits and give a brief tour of their operation to curious patrons. Bottles of the distillery’s creations can be purchased directly from the store, with prices starting at $25. Learn more about RAD’s traditional artisan distilling process at renartisan.com.
“Breakfast at Valley Café (or Blue Door, though it's not in Akron). For Mexican, Taqueria Rancheros, and pizza, it’s Emidio's. Fried chicken and jojos at Rascissi’s and burgers at Louie's (with Christy fries). Meatballs and subs, go to Deviti’s— I could go on and on about the food in Akron!” – Paula Ann Sauter “Akron Family for breakfast. Rockne's for lunch. Luigi's for dinner—the most Akron, not my favorite—and Zub's for Akron fourthmeal.” – Nate White “I guess The Blue Door Cafe & Bakery is technically Cuyahoga Falls but it is the best restaurant, breakfast or otherwise, in Akron and the surrounding area. Hands. Down. Period. For lunch I am a big fan of Lockview, Urban Eats, or the Diamond Deli. For dinner, I'm going Primo's Deli. Or if it's a Tuesday night the pasta at the Carovillese Club.” – Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout-Bartman “Akron Family for breakfast; Hamburger Station for elevensies; Primo's Deli for lunch (nap on a bench on the Towpath after too many Primo's beers); Papa Joe's for dinner; and a nightmare from the Corral after a movie at the Nightlight, and drinks at Frank's and Ray's.” – Todd Taras (Editor’s note: I want to party with you, cowboy.) “Breakfast at Fred's, after waiting in line for 15 minutes because the place is terribly small. Lunch at Valley Café for the tuna pita with their home fries. For dinner, I'm going Tito's or Dontinos!” – Deron Boyd “I love Wally Waffle. …I get pancakes at Wally Waffle. Also, let's just have breakfast for lunch and dinner too and call this questionnaire filled out.” – Danny Paparella
FREE Workshop Series Mobile Storytelling/Journalism This workshop is a MUST for artists, musicians, vendors or anyone who wants to learn to better promote their work via social media. Presented by The Akronist, Highland Square Library Tuesday July 14, Thursday July 23 and Tuesday July 28.
Performer's Tool Box Performers of all experience levels can enhance their onstage presence, work through stage fright, practice in front of an audience, and perform with the group at the PorchRokr Festival. Presented by The Wandering Aesthetics, None Too Fragile Theater August 1 - 22
Guitar Orchestra Play in The PorchRokr Guitar Orchestra! All ages are welcome. All you need is an acoustic guitar. Levels range from basic strumming and plucking for the novice to cool riffs for the experienced player. Presented By James Marron, Rockynol July 20 - August 29
Details and registration information at PorchRokr.org
JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 /
THE Devil Strip |
food & Culture
Whipping up a concept:
How one chef is kneading life into the Akron Kitchen Chef Ashley Young and a group of aspiring restaurateurs are working to complete the concept of a community kitchen in downtown Akron by Megan Combs
Starting a restaurant or catering business is grueling Catering, the now closed Sinergy Lounge and The work. Just ask Chef Ashley Young, 31, owner of Flying Fig, Young started working for a catering Fire & Ash Catering. company where she was asked to do the work of three people because of cutbacks. “It’s rough, the hours are crummy and sometimes you don’t even see your family for a week,” Young “I thought it would be a better idea if I took the says. “But in the end, it’s very rewarding to see energy I had and opened a business for myself,” your vision or idea of a business manifest itself.” Young says. “If you’re doing three jobs for someone else, it puts things in perspective. If I Young is one of the founding members of the could accomplish this much for someone else, what Akron Kitchen concept, a place where aspiring can I accomplish for myself?” restaurateurs can go to start up their business with all the tools they’ll need readily accessible. The When Young got Fire & Ash Catering going, Akron Kitchen lives only as an idea at the moment she used the help of fellow chefs at Cleveland’s but Young and other group members are getting Culinary Launch and Kitchen (CCLK), which is the input and resources they need to make it also a community kitchen. CCLK provides a fully a reality. equipped commercial kitchen for rent to food entrepreneurs on an as-needed basis, according to its website. Its mission is to “quicken and improve the process of starting a food business by providing business support, peer support and networking.”
A little help from my friends
Young got into the restaurant business back in 2002 when she graduated from the Pennsylvania Institute of Culinary Arts. She was taught all the basics and thrown into the restaurant world. After working for the now closed Flower, Bon Apetite
Young still uses the CCLK and her work there inspired her and her husband to develop the Akron Kitchen concept, which was closer to her Wadsworth home.
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
“There’s competition, but it’s not cutthroat,” she says. “We all want each other to succeed. I’ve picked up a couple (catering) jobs through there just by word of mouth.”
Akron Kitchen heats up “The idea is to create a place for people like me, startups, to work and have a kitchen that is up to date, inspected and depending on what area you want to get into, they have a way to provide you with the equipment and tools you’ll need to do that,” Young says. “There are startups all over Akron in the food business and maybe they aren’t connected, so this would be a way for them to all connect and network.” Young is working with Akron restaurant owner “Ms. Julie” of Ms. Julie’s Kitchen, and Lloyd Hemphill of Next Level Development Group LLC. Young says Hemphill and Ms. Julie came up with the Akron Kitchen idea a while ago, but now a bigger group has formed and meets regularly to talk about what the kitchen should incorporate.
“It’s in the beginning stages as far as equipment we’ll provide,” Young says. “We also have to talk about whether we’ll have a sit-and-dine option. It’s all ideas right now.” In the end, local restaurants helping local farmers is what it’s all about, Young says. “Using organic, GMO-free food is just a healthier way to eat,” Young says. “Your fresh local strawberries will always taste better than the ones you buy at the store. Eating that way just makes you feel more clean.” So what’s her favorite dish to prepare? “To be honest, I think that’s unfair,” she laughs. “I like to talk to the people and find out what they like and create or customize a dish catered to what they like to eat. So that is my favorite dish.” For more information about how to get involved with Akron Kitchen, visit facebook.com/groups/ akronkitchen or www.akronkitchen.org and fill out the form to get involved and make your ideas heard.
Keepers of the Art Music Showcase
The Mighty Soul Night
Saturday, July 25 at 7 pm Akron Art Museum ($15) 1 S High St, Akron Join Keepers of the Art, a nonprofit in Akron dedicated to preserving the integrity of urban artistic expression, in welcoming Grammy-nominated songwriter Teedra Moses, Akron’s own Dan Wilson Trio, and Columbus DJ KR8 DGA for an evening of music at the Akron Art Museum.
2nd Anniversary: Diaspora Diggin 7 pm at Uncorked Wine Bar (FREE) 22 N. High St Join The Mighty Soul Night as they celebrate their second year anniversary with "Diaspora Diggin." DJs Ben Crazy, Forrest Getem Gump and El Prezidente with rock the wheels of steel while Dennis Oliver keeps it moving on drums. They’ll glide musically around the globe with stops in Brazil, Peru, Columbia, West Indes, Puerto Rico, Africa and Cuba, transported via LPs and 45s while you never leave Downtown Akron's Historic Art District. Admission is free so stop by and show them your gratitude with a dance.
Stop by during Porch Rokr for an authentic Highland Square experience.
Runaway Dorothy with Jon Mosey Thursday, July 30 at 5:30 pm Jilly’s Music Room (FREE) 111 N Main St, Akron Americana quartet Runaway Dorothy returns to Akron from New York City, bringing along a host of celebrity fans, like Roseanne Cash, Adam Duritz, Rob Thomas and Ryan Adams. Their sensibility is both rustic and refined, mining folk, country, and alt-country, featuring captivating storyteller lyrics, mesmerizingly melancholy vocals, and achingly beautiful harmonies. Akron’s own roots music maestro Jon Mosey opens.
The ol' pub is still crankin' out cold beer and cocktails all summer. Grab a bottle of Sam Adams, just $2.50 each this month, and catch the Tribe on the tube.
816 W. MARKET STREET | AKRON Josh Rzepka Saturday, August 1 at 8 pm BLU Jazz+ ($15) 47 E Market St, Akron Welcome Akron native (and Chicago transplant) Josh Rzepka back to BLU Jazz+, where he has sold out every show he’s played so far. He’ll be in concert with some of Northeast Ohio’s finest jazz players, including Theron Brown, Lucas Kadish, Peter Dominguez and Ron Godale. Josh is renowned not only for his jazz playing and composing, but also for his classical performances.
Gates open at 6 pm | Concerts start at 7 pm
JUL 24 TIME TRAVELER A Tribute to The Moody Blues with Shivering Timbers
ROCK THE LOCK
THE FAMILY STONE
with Marilyn Rivers All-Star Review
Music & COncerts WEDNESDAY, JULY 22
THURSDAY, JULY 23
Ahi-Nama 7:30pm at Nuevo Modern Mexican (FREE) 54 E Mill St, Akron Playing a fun and danceable mix of Latin Jazz, Salsa, and Timba music from Cuba and the Carribean, Ahi-Nama is sure to enhance your Nuevo experience!
Vans Warped Tour 11am at Blossom Music Center ($38.50) 1145 W Steels Corner Rd, Cuyahoga Falls One of the longest-running music festivals in America, Vans Warped Tour is back for its 20th year! Featuring a huge range of artists from punk, indie, hardcore, hip-hop and more, this is a daylong party you won’t want to miss.
JUL 31 DIRTY DEEDS
Extreme AC/DC Tribute with Metal Inc.
ROCK THE LOCK
AUG 1 NATURAL WONDER
The Ultimate Stevie Wonder Experience with Colin Dussault’s Blues Project
JUL 22 JUL 29
Fabulous Voices The Wanda Hunt Band
Concerts start at 7 pm Lock 4 is located off of Bowery St., behind the Civic Theatre, next to Lock 3. Admission is free. Bring your lawn chair.
(continued on page 20)
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
(All tickets sold at gate, no-pre-sale)
Tramonte Distributing Co.
Entertainment (continued from page 19)
TUESDAY, JULY 28
Occidental Gypsy 8pm at BLU Jazz+ ($20) 47 E Market St, Akron Occidental Gypsy plays an exhilarating blend of gypsy swing, jazz and world music that enraptures the listener with a lightning fast, complex acoustic sound, rounded by sultry smooth vocals reminiscent of the first era of swing. Join BLU Jazz+ as they welcome this red-hot, Django-inspired, gypsy jazz group in their Rubber City debut.
FRIDAY, JULY 24 Abby Rose 6:30pm at GAR Hall ($7 suggested donation) 1785 Main St, Peninsula Before she became one of the lead singers in a band, Abby Rose was an artist making waves on her own. With her unique vocals and catchy tunes, her solo material is sure to make you stop and take notice. Zach and the Bright Lights 9pm at Max McQ’s (FREE) 1562 Akron Peninsula Rd, Akron Don’t miss one of the limited full band shows Zach and the Bright Lights are playing this summer! Zach is known not only for his music, but also his community involvement - he founded the Akron Peace Project, an organization working to inspire nonviolence, and organizes Big Love Fest, a daylong celebration of music, yoga, dance, visual arts, and more. David Wax Museum with Mike Reiter 9pm at Musica ($10) 51 E Market St, Akron Combining Latin rhythms, infectious melodies, and call-and-response hollering, David Wax Museum fuses traditional Mexican folk with indie rock and American roots to create a Mexo-Americana aesthetic.
SATURDAY, JULY 25
The Mighty Soul Night 2nd Anniversary: Diaspora Diggin 7 pm at Uncorked Wine Bar (FREE) 22 N. High St Join The Mighty Soul Night as they celebrate their second year anniversary with "Diaspora Diggin." DJs Ben Crazy, Forrest Getem Gump and El Prezidente with rock the wheels of steel while Dennis Oliver keeps it moving on drums. They’ll glide musically around the globe with stops in Brazil, Peru, Columbia, West Indes, Puerto Rico, Africa and Cuba, transported via LPs and 45s while you never leave Downtown Akron's Historic Art District. Admission is free so stop by and show them your gratitude with a dance. The Family Stone with Marilyn Rivers 7 pm at Akron Civic Theatre ($10) 182 S Main St, Akron Original Sly & The Family Stone founding members, Rock & Roll Hall of fame inductees, and R&B Pioneer Award Winners Jerry Martini, Cynthia Robinson, and Greg Errico, along with their powerful bandmates, bring the message of peace, love, and social consciousness through musical harmony with some of the funkiest players of all time. Lucas Carpenter w/ Andrew Nielson 7 pm at Musica ($8) 51 E Market St, Akron With a beat heavy and melody rich sound that borrows from his love of folk songcraft, the colorfulness of pop, Nashville storytelling, and hip electronic production values, Lucas Carpenter is remixing what it means to be a singer-songwriter. His high-octane electro-acoustic show is not to be missed!
SUNDAY, JULY 26 Keepers of the Art Music Showcase 7 pm at Akron Art Museum ($15) 1 S High St, Akron Join Keepers of the Art, a nonprofit in Akron dedicated to preserving the integrity of urban artistic expression, in welcoming Grammy-nominated songwriter Teedra Moses, Akron’s own Dan Wilson Trio, and Columbus DJ KR8 DGA for an evening of music at the Akron Art Museum.
Music by Nature: A Romantic Summer’s Eve 6:30pm at Happy Days Lodge ($17 for members; $20 for nonmembers) 500 W Streetsboro St, Peninsula With flute, guitar, viola and cello, this unusual grouping of instruments presents a concert that is sure to satisfy the music lover in everyone. The evening features music from the Baroque to the late Romantics, with an added touch of South American flair. Firestone Park Summer Concert 7:30pm at Firestone Park (FREE) 40 Axline Ave, Akron Bring a blanket and have a picnic in the park while enjoying the wonderful Akron Symphony Orchestra under the stars!
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
Steely Dan with Elvis Costello & The Imposters 7pm at Blossom Music Center ($35.50) 1145 W Steels Corner Rd, Cuyahoga Falls Steely Dan’s intricate blend of jazz rock with whimsical, ironically charged lyrics has built them a cult following over the last four decades, while Elvis Costello & The Imposters blend lyricism with the ruthlessness of punk. Don’t miss these two classic artists in concert together!
WEDNESDAY, JULY 29 A Tribute to Billy Strayhorn featuring Bill Dobbins 7pm at BLU Jazz+ (FREE) 47 E Market St, Akron Bill Dobbins presents an exciting solo piano tribute to the famous American jazz composer, pianist, lyricist, arranger, and longtime Duke Ellington collaborator, Billy Strayhorn, whose 100th birthday would be this year!
THURSDAY, JULY 30 Runaway Dorothy with Jon Mosey 5:30pm at Jilly’s Music Room (FREE) 111 N Main St, Akron Americana quartet Runaway Dorothy counts Roseanne Cash, Adam Duritz, Rob Thomas, and Ryan Adams as fans. Their sensibility is both rustic and refined, mining folk, country, and alt-country, featuring captivating storyteller lyrics, mesmerizingly melancholy vocals, and achingly beautiful harmonies.
FRIDAY, JULY 31 Brent Kirby & His Luck 6:30pm at GAR Hall ($7 suggested donation) 1785 Main St, Peninsula Catch Brent with his new band His Luck, for the first time the entire band will be playing the Hall. This band has been tearing it up at every packed room they play. Hot off the release of their first CD, Brent and the Boys will be playing Brent “penned” songs, old and new, some with a new twist, always with meaning. Tim McGraw with Billy Currington and Chase Bryant 7pm at Blossom Music Center ($32.75) 1145 W Steels Corner Rd, Cuyahoga Falls Country sensation Tim McGraw comes to Blossom to “…sling sweat, have fun and help make some summertime memories for everyone who joins us.” Supported by special guest Billy Currington and newcomer Chase Bryant, you can be sure this show won’t disappoint.
Whiskey Daredevils with Plastic Pinks and Archie & The Bunkers 9pm at Musica ($8) 51 E Market St, Akron Combining equal parts classic country, punk rock, and 60s garage, the Whiskey Daredevils mine Americana music as a source of inspiration and identity. They’re joined by Plastic Pinks, a South Florida band that plays garage punk, surf, and dirty indie jams, and Archie & The Bunkers, featuring a whirling vintage organ sound driven by a thundering, yet sophisticated pulse from the drums. Mid West Reggae Fest July 31 - August 2 at Clay’s Park ($70) 13190 Patterson St NW, North Lawrence The Mid West Reggae Fest is back for its 24th year, featuring acts including Tropidelic, Umojah Nation, and Mighty Diamonds. If you like reggae, you will love this festival!
SATURDAY, AUGUST 1 Josh Rzepka 8pm at BLU Jazz+ ($15) 47 E Market St, Akron Welcome Josh Rzepka back to BLU Jazz+, in concert with some of Northeast Ohio’s finest jazz players, including Theron Brown, Lucas Kadish, Peter Dominguez, and Ron Godale. Josh is renowned not only for his jazz playing and composing, but also for his classical performances.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 2 Sunday Summer Concert: Bobby Selvaggio Quartet 5:30pm at F.A. Seiberling Nature Realm (FREE) 1828 Smith Rd, Akron Bring a blanket or chair and enjoy the soothing jazz of the Bobby Selvaggio Quartet during this free concert. If it rains, the concert will be moved to the covered Seneca Deck.
MONDAY, AUGUST 3 Van Halen with Kenny Wayne Shephard 7:30pm at Blossom Music Center ($43) 1145 W Steels Corner Rd, Cuyahoga Falls Legendary rock band Van Halen is touring once again - don’t miss your chance to see them in Northeast Ohio! Support act Kenny Wayne Shepherd is a blues rock, singer/songwriter, who stays true to his deep south roots.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5
Music in the Meadow: Shivering Timbers 5:30pm at Howe Meadow (FREE) 4040 Riverview Rd, Peninsula This captivating trio enthralls audiences with a combination of indie rock energy, blues/punk passion, and country/gospel reflection. Enjoy these local favorites in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park!
Entertainment 2010 when Herring packed his bags and moved to North Carolina.
own punk rock musical history is evident on the release, resulting in an upbeat, melodic experience.
Full Wave Rectifier held its farewell concert at Musica five years ago, but Herring knew deep down that geography couldn’t come between him and the familiar faces he enjoyed playing with. The band will return to the venue August 7 for a special reunion show, featuring Herring’s current project, Go Go Hero, along with longtime pals and show mates, Peep.
Herring admits he’s been listening to some hip-hop again — the sound that inevitably influenced his work with Dink, as he was heavy into Beastie Boys and Public Enemy at the time of the group’s rise to fame — inspiring more funk and beats-driven material with Go Go Hero.
“I planned a trip to Ohio to visit family and friends, and I got it in my brain that we needed to have a reunion,” Herring says. “Peep was the first band I thought of to bring on board with us.” Herring’s ties to the musical Midwest have influenced his work throughout his journey in music. In fact, when he first formed Go Go Hero in the 2000s, he recruited Akron-based bassist Tim Prentice to join the group, fusing the sounds he grew up with in Ohio and the southern aural experience he had been saturated in since moving to North Carolina.
Akron’s Full Wave Rectifier Reunites for a Special Performance by Brittany Nader
In the ‘90s, sounds from Northeast Ohio could be heard pouring out of television sets across the country — specifically those tuned in to MTV. From “Beavis and Butthead” to “120 Minutes,” local band Dink’s fusion of guitar-driven alternative rock and industrial hip-hop became part of the soundtrack of many Gen-Xers’ lives. The band’s guitarist, Jer Herring, says his time in the Dink consisted of some of the highest highs and lowest lows as the group evolved from a significant part of the NEO music scene to a fixture on the spectrum of national performers.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
“We went from playing houses in Akron to playing on top of the Capitol Records building,” Herring says. “When you have a good band, stuff like that happens. We got our lucky break. It felt very surreal.” After Dink disbanded in 1998, Herring remained active in music, forming Full Wave Rectifier a year later. Driven by influences from Pixies, Hüsker Dü and Minutemen, this new project centered on uptempo guitar riffs, fast-paced punk rock beats and poppy vocals. The band, consisting of Akron-based musicians, was a fixture on the local scene until
Herring points to differences in his home state’s musical atmosphere compared to his current locale, with crossover scenes happening in Northeast Ohio cities but not so much in the South.
A documentary on his work with Dink was created by a local filmmaker in 2012, stirring up all kinds of memories and allowing Herring to recognize how special the dynamic has been in his most recent musical projects. “In Go Go Hero, there’s lots of collaboration. We’re all navigators, since we’ve all been leaders in previous bands,” Herring says. “Everyone is enthusiastic about the ideas that get tossed around. That’s not always the case in bands.” From Dink to Full Wave Rectifier and Go Go Hero, Herring and his band mates have made a significant mark on Northeast Ohio’s music history. Focusing on guitar-based melodies and bringing in a diverse range of influences has given birth to distinct sounds spanning the past two decades and lingering on throughout Akron’s airwaves.
“I was born and raised in the Midwest, and I think location permeates my music,” Herring says. “It’s a subconscious kind of thing. I’ve developed a different sound since moving, and [Go Go Hero] has been trying to get in front of fans who listen to stuff in the same neighborhood.” He hopes the upcoming reunion show in Akron will bring in both old friends and new fans. He expresses a bit of nervousness about getting together with his former band mates, but he says he’s excited to stir the pot and show people what they’ve got cooking nowadays. Go Go Hero is surely climbing the ladder of success, with legendary producer Mitch Easter having a hand in the production of the band’s sophomore release. Easter is noted for his significant work with R.E.M., Pavement and Ex Hex, and his influence is clear on Go Go Hero’s recorded alternative music. The band’s sound is certainly reminiscent of ‘90s alt but with a crisper, more experimental modern twist. The blend of North Carolina influences with Akron’s
Locals are in for a treat with all-star alternative acts Go Go Hero, Full Wave Rectifier and Peep playing under one roof in the heart of downtown Akron. Tickets for the reunion show are $8 and can be purchased online at liveatmusica. com or at Musica’s doors on Friday, Aug. 7 at 8 p.m.
JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 /
THE Devil Strip |
reading comics in public
Con Recap: 24th Annual Akron-Canton Comic Con by Isaac Kelley When the 24th annual Akron-Canton Comic Con was held at Chapparelles Community Center the last Sunday in June, I was there. I don't normally attend, but this year I went bright and early. Unlike other comic book events, I left my voracious, comic-reading daughter at home for this one. This was not a modern, media-friendly convention with cosplay and panels and things that children would enjoy. Akron has a con like that now, it is called the Akron Comicon, and it is delightful. By contrast, the Akron-Canton Comic Con is a hardcore hobbyist convention of the old school. Old men and longboxes of comics crammed into a bingo hall, the whole affair smelling like bowling alleys used to. That environment is implicitly hostile to outsiders. There are few young attendees, and fewer women. There are almost no people of color. There are no events to speak of, no gateway activities. Just a lot of old men selling other old men old comic books in a confined space. When I refer to “old men,” I'm referring to “hobbyists.” A hobbyist can, of course, be any age or any gender, but young people don't really go in for hobbies these days. Hobbies are of a bygone
era, an era when men needed things to pass the time, and when it was perfectly normal to exclude women from anything remotely interesting. Last time I went to this con, I was a young man and relatively new to comics. This scene was intimidating as hell. Everyone was crammed together looking through old comics I had never read. I didn't know what was good or what was fairly priced. The whole environment was crammed tight with men older than me who seemed to know exactly what they were looking for. I had no “in.” It was so unfriendly an environment, that I never came back. Returning now, many years later, I've discovered that I have become one of the old men. I can now navigate these waters.
positive connotations to the terms “nerd” or “geek.” It's the old model of comics culture created when socially awkward people banded together. Unsurprisingly, as a defensive measure these early comics nerds became hostile toward anyone on the outside. It's an attitude that can be felt today. If you can't rattle off the writers and artists of the 70's Marvel Bullpen, you aren't really wanted at the AkronCanton Comic Con.
I feel a strange mix of attraction and repulsion within the walls of this convention. It's kind of a glorious place, because I love comic books. I adore rifling through longboxes. I'm surrounded by people who have serious opinions on who was the best Kirby inker. (Sinnott, obviously.)
While most of the attendees are of the old guard, there are smatterings of confused young people wandering the floor. A few teenagers in costume, a few parents who brought their young children, a few women. While surely some of them are in their element, it seems likely that most were expecting a different comics culture, the culture of Ms. Marvel and Image Comics and Raina Telgemeir. Nerd culture has won the day, but in doing so, it evolved. This con feels like a pocket universe frozen in amber, where the past 24 years of cultural progress never happened.
On the other hand, this con is a relic of a bygone era. It's a holdover of an era when there were no
For as long as there has been an American comic book culture, the core has been overwhelmingly
made up of white dudes with disposable income who like stories about men punching each other while wearing pajamas. I'm proud to say that this is becoming less true every passing day. The comic book culture of 2015 is welcoming to readers of all backgrounds who like all sorts of stories about all sorts of people. The comic book culture of the Akron-Canton Comic Con is just an echo of the past. Still, while I like to read stories from a variety of genres and I like to read stories about people who are fundamentally different than me, certain facts remain: I am a white man in my 30's who has dedicated an oddly large percentage of his time in the past year to the task of reading every canonical appearance of Thor printed in the pages of Marvel Comics. There are a lot of old Thor comics at this con, priced to move. So I put my head down and spend a few hours digging through the stacks, filling some holes in my collection.
AK Libs Fill in the blanks here and plug them into the paragraph below. 1. Noun _________________________________ 2. Adjective ______________________________
The Waitresses were an experimental post-punk (1) __________________________ from Akron, Ohio. The group was led by guitarist/songwriter Chris Butler with (2) __________________________ vocals performed by Patty Donahue. They had minor
3. Specific _______________________________ 4. Noun _________________________________ 5. Year __________________________________
success in the (3) __________________________ with the song “I Know What Boys Like,” from their 1982 debut album “Wasn't Tomorrow Wonderful.” Originally released as a (4) __________________________ single in 1980, “I Know What Boys Like” did not chart initially but became an underground hit and by (5) __________________________,
6. Verb (past-tense) _______________________ 7. Plural noun ____________________________ 8. Holiday _______________________________
it peaked at No. 23 on Billboard's Top Tracks chart, also charting in Australia and the UK. The Waitresses (6) __________________________ the theme song for the TV show “Square Pegs,” appearing as (7) __________________________ in the pilot episode. Their (8) __________________________ song “Christmas Wrapping” became a No. 45 hit in
9. Band _________________________________ 10. TV Show ______________________________
the UK in 1982 and was covered by the (9) __________________________ in 1998 and later on the TV show (10)______________________________ their 2011 Christmas special. (Adapted from the Wikimedia entry for The Waitresses)
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
Akron Adolescence Ten Hours at the Rubber Bowl by Chris Kessinger
Looking back on it now, Ozzfest ‘98 was probably a rough first concert for a 13-year-old. I had just gotten into rock/alternative music fresh off a country music phase when my best friend, Jeff Gill, invited me to the biggest music festival of the year. Thinking about where the road would take me, my mind wandered to exotic lands that I had never been to—like Detroit, Pittsburgh or Columbus. As it turned out, my entrance into the rock-and-roll world was a mile from my house, a stone's throw from the safe haven of my protective childhood. This magical place was called the Rubber Bowl.
Alice Cooper. I remember attending many Akron vs Kent State matchups, one of which included an overtime thriller won by the Zips with a long field goal. The Rubber Bowl helped stake Akron's claim to fame in an era when stadiums were built to draw outsiders.
Tickets for Ozzfest were $32, which seemed like a lot of money in 1998, but that lineup—Tool, Limp Bizkit, Megadeath and Ozzy Osbourne, just to name a few—has yet to be topped by any of the 80 concerts that I have seen since. I arrived at the stadium around noon and was greeted by sights It seems mind-boggling today to think big-name and smells generally forbidden a teenager. Thanks music concerts were a regular occurrence at the to my proximity to so many attractive women that Rubber Bowl, but at the time it was Akron's biggest day, I officially surrendered my adolescent fear of venue. It opened in 1940 as the hometown college the opposite sex. football team, the Zips. The bowl also hosted local high school football games, including the City Since general admission granted you come-and-go Series Championship game every Thanksgiving, two passage between the stands and standing on the Cleveland Browns regular season football games same turf that the Zips invaded every Saturday, I in 1941 and in 1942, and many must-see concerts chose to stand in the endzone to watch my biggest that included Metallica, The Rolling Stones and rock idols perform. As the night hours approached,
(continued from page 11) Sarah: Damascus Road Café is somewhere I would go twice a day if I worked downtown: once in the morning for coffee and again in the afternoon for a sandwich. I did not expect to see such a huge menu at such a small venue. There are so many options for different coffees, teas, and deli sandwiches.
Hattie’s Café Noor: I’ve always loved Hattie Larlham because aside from making a bad-ass cup of coffee, they have the coolest mission: providing jobs and training services for people with developmental disabilities. Hattie’s is an outgrowth of that mission. The decor is funky and fun, with ample seating in the back, and a variety of coffees, sweets, lunch items, ice cream and smoothies. Sarah: Hattie’s is so cozy and so cute. I love that the seating is tucked in the back, separated from
the shop. It was also fun to see the different pictures on the wall that truly captured Hattie’s family’s mission.
Nervous Dog Noor: Though I committed the sin of walking in with a cup of tea from Angel Falls, nothing could stop our kind and knowledgeable barista from introducing us to their eclectic menu with names just as fun as their coffee. It’s the perfect place to bring your indecisive friend, or that friend who has cravings for mysterious foods and drinks— Chihuahua, anyone? Sarah: Best barista experience ever! The girl behind the counter was so funny and made my very first Nervous Dog experience awesome by recommending several different flavored lattes based off of my interests. I particularly enjoyed the balance of Victorian-inspired decor and other weirdness that gives the shop its aesthetic sense. The chillness exudes from every corner of the coffee shop. Next time I need to buckle down and focus on finishing a story or project, I will go to Nervous Dog and sit in the corner of their long, comfy bench with a latte, muffin and my thoughts.
Pearl Coffee Company
Noor: I’m nominating Pearl Coffee Company for
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
I became drained both mentally and physically from a lack of liquids and the amount of energy that I spent moshing around with grown men as big as pro wrestlers. However, I got the blast of energy that I needed to get through the final two hours when my favorite band, Tool, fronted by Ravenna-born vocalist Maynard James Keenan, hit the stage. In the end, people were passed out on the turf from a hard day of rock and roll, but I raged on as I ran along the field like a football player to get to the front of the crowd. Did I succeed? One fat lip and a black eye later, I was jamming out painlessly (until the next morning anyway) to cap off a day that prepared me for many shows for years to come. Since then, I have been to every venue in Northeast Ohio, but none of them will ever hold a place in my heart like the Rubber Bowl did on that hot and sunny Sunday afternoon in 1998.
The Rubber Bowl was left vacant in 2008, with the Zips opting for the brand new InfoCision Stadium on Exchange Street. It was purchased by Team1 Marketing Group in January 2013 for $38,000. With rumors of a USFL Pro Football team taking over the stadium, perhaps some new life will be injected into the crumbling ruins of one of Akron's biggest landmarks. People love their history, and the Rubber Bowl is etched in it for generations past, present and future. // Chris Kessinger is a regular contributor to The Devil Strip, often as “The Film Freak.” You can find The Film Freak's film reviews at thefilmfreak.com
“Best Smelling Coffee Place in Akron.” The building seems small but the real magic happens in the back, which houses the millions and millions of coffee beans Pearl Coffee Company receives each day from around the world. Employee Johnna M. Economou, whose family has owned the shop since 1919, kindly took us in the back and showed us the process of how they roast their coffee. Oh, and if you haven’t tried their blueberry coffee, you’re missing out. Sarah: I didn’t even know so many different flavors of coffee existed until I stepped foot in Pearl Coffee Company’s little hallway storefront. Immediately thinking, “Oh, this place is cute,” Noor and I met Johnna and before I knew it we were touring a ginormous building with roasting equipment and thousands upon thousands of pounds of coffee beans. Pearl Coffee sells their coffee at Acme, which only makes me love the place even more for its local-ness. I left Pearl with six different onepot samples to try with mom and not a one has disappointed. I’ll be stocking up before the fall semester hits.
Urban Eats Noor: Akron. Akron. Akron. There is no other way to describe Urban Eats. The floor is made of cracked cement, and the chipped brick along with the pops of color and local art displayed on the walls embodies everything we know and love about
this city. The piece of bacon nonchalantly hanging in the corner of the shop made me laugh, and to top it off, all of this observing was done while sipping a great cup of tea and participating in some healthy ass-kicking over a game of checkers with my friend Mariah. Sarah: As soon as I walked into Urban Eats, I shouted, “OMG. I love this adaptation of ‘The Tempest’!” That nerdy outbreak was sponsored by Julie Taymor’s 2010 “Tempest” up on the TV inside. (Come on… that’s cool.) Settling down, I sipped the best chai latte I’ve had in a while, watching Noor and Mariah play checkers with chess pieces. I’ve only ever peeked into Urban Eats. Getting the chance to soak it all in, I realized how the local art plastered all over the walls, along with the fun colors, make for a creative space and awesome atmosphere.
JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10 /
THE Devil Strip |
Entertainment conscience. His food is barely an afterthought. A white reflection on his shoulder almost reads as a comforting hand, but closer inspection reveals it to be the figure of a person on the busy street. In the background, the other customers don’t seem any better off: Evans captures the fleeting glimpse when each figure is focused on their plates, eyes downcast. If we imagine a soundtrack for the photograph, it’s the clinking of silverware on plates, chewing, the fumbling of papers as sandwiches are hastily unwrapped, street noise, and not much more. The scene becomes even heavier when we realize that the photograph was taken in 1929, the year of the Stock Market Crash which precipitated the Great Depression.
psychology of busyness by Dominic Caruso
s it lunchtime yet? That’s the thought that seems to occur me–and likely many people–earlier and earlier each day, or that’s what it feels like. Sometimes I labor beneath the illusion of frugality and pack my lunch, but too often I feel the draw of the greasy spoon and visit a local, wellworn establishment for an omelet, wrap, or quick sandwich. Quick being the operative word, because
travel made easy
even with a full hour for lunch, the psychology of busyness is tough to change, and lunch on a work day is always an antsy situation, wedged into the day by panicked necessity: I gotta eat something, but I’m too busy! So recently, when I forced myself to take a moment of reflection, I wandered from my desk into the Akron Art Museum gallery where “Proof: Photographs from the Collection” is currently on view, and I stopped before a photograph by Walker Evans, “City Lunch Counter,” 1929, because I immediately recognized the looks of the men captured mid-bite in Evans’ masterful documentary photograph. I knew those looks. I’ve lived them too many times. Probably you have, too. In “City Lunch Counter,” the men gaze into the diner window as they eat, separately, and in silence. The speed and work and worry of their lives seems to sweep before their eyes in the reflections of the city in the windows before them. The workman in the center of the image lifts a fork to his mouth, but his eyes pull sharply to the left and downward as though he is struggling with the weight of some anxiety, some matter of
Admittedly, the photograph doesn’t make lunch any less angst-ridden. Not for me, anyway. That’s not Walker Evans’ concern in this photograph from early in his career. Instead, he captures the worry, haste and speed of the lives of ordinary people in this photograph, and in doing so, he shows us the anxiety of our own often hectic lives. How we interpret that and what we do with it is up to us, because, as we all know, photographs often raise as many questions as they answer. That’s true of “City Lunch Counter,” and it’s true of all the work featured in “Proof.” The exhibition includes more than one hundred photographs from masters of documentary photography, like Walker Evans and Garry Winogrand, to contemporary artists like Barbara Probst, Josh Azzarella and Jennifer Williams, whose work expands and interrogates the genre of documentary. Each photograph offers multiple points of reflection and exploration. We have only to stop, take a moment, and look. ____________________________________________ Below: Walker Evans, City Lunch Counter, 1929, Gelatin silver print. 5 in. x 7 1/4 in. Collection of the Akron Art Museum. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. C. Blake McDowell, Jr. Above: Proof: Photographs from the Collection, installation view. Photo: Joe Levack/Studio Akron Barbara Probst, Exposure #106: N.Y.C., Broome & Crosby Streets, 04.17.13, 2:29 p.m. , 2013. Ultrachrome ink on paper. 22 x 44 in. (each). Collection of the Akron Art Museum. Museum Acquisition Fund.
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| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
misc. (continued from page 8)
(continued from page 10)
B is for the Breakfast Club
Mustard Seed Market & Café (Highland Square) Obviously you can get food from the café upstairs but you can also buy food from their prepared foods case in the store and take it upstairs. I’m telling you this because if you didn’t already know their ginger tofu is the bomb. Rumor has it, their pizza by-the-slice is also on point.
Rasicci’s For a movie night at home, when you want some sinful deep-dish pizza and/or fried chicken and jojo’s.
Urban Eats The menu changes every month but keep an eye out for their fruit pies and by pies I mean pizzas, the one with apple, cheddar, and bacon for instance or strawberry, walnut and bleu cheese.
Nuevo I love to nibble and drink here—chips, queso fundido, salsa trio, guacs, ceviche and then there’s the bar. Try the smoked sea salt rim on your next margarita. On the entree side, I always enjoy the scallops.
Wally Waffle Chocolate chip pancakes with butter and maple syrup all day.
Unlike some other clubs, The Breakfast Club is not industry specific. Kaley Foster, the beeswax candle making owner of Urban Buzz (urbnbuzz.com), wanted to create a networking event that wasn’t about networking. The Breakfast Club meets the first Tuesday of each month at 7:30 am at the Front Porch Cafe on Grant Street. The meetings are casual and open to anyone interested. Over breakfast, motivational and educational speakers give a pep talk to inspire attendees to build a better Akron. (Editor’s note: Kaley was another person who responded to our Big Ideas survey because her big ideas aren’t limited to bees but how she can help build a better Akron. And she smiles, like, all the time so if you need a boost of good cheer, she’s your woman.)
Gainer says she got the idea while working on the “Art of Akron” cover story for The Devil Strip. She interviewed a significant number of artists and noticed they shared an underlying theme in their careers: failure and rejection. Each person had personal anecdotes and major life lessons that stemmed from failing. Gainer, who describes herself as a natural planner, was intrigued and wanted to find a way to connect these types of people.
“When you look around the room during the meeting, guests aren't talking about business. They're talking about friends, family, and ways to improve our city,” Foster says, “They're truly connecting, not just swapping business cards. That is the main goal: to connect motivated individuals trying to make Akron a better place to live.”
Though the first meet-up isn’t scheduled until August 11, the pre-registered event attendees represent a wide variety of fields, from artists to lawyers to non-profit organizers—and that’s exactly what Gainer wants.
The Breakfast Club is works to create a brighter future for Akron by bringing the people that care about Akron together. The attendees and speakers vary, but Foster’s core goal is to build a better community and she’s succeeding one breakfast at a time. To learn more, show up at the Front Porch Café at 7:30 am on the first Tuesday of each month.
C is for Creative Cog The Creative Cog is the new kid on the block, the brainchild of Devil Strip contributor Katelyn Gainer. She says her goal is to bring together like-minded creative, once a month, to talk about the trials and tribulations of pursuing their career in a creative field. Each meeting will feature a different local discussing their personal and professional experiences.
Pad Thai As the name suggests, BEST PAD THAI around and for god’s sake USE THE LIME PEOPLE! It makes the food pop.
“I think there needs to be more attention focused on our creative community. I hope this starts a discussion and opens up more collaboration opportunities among the creative community, businesses, nonprofits, and others.” Creative Cog kicks off at Musica at 7:30 am on August 11 and its first speaker is Devil Strip publisher and Knight Cities Challenge winner Chris Horne. His talk will be “Dancing with Failure and the Art of Living Local.” For more information visit facebook.com/CreativeCogAkron.
West Side Bakery Broccoli cheddar bread.
| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2015 • VOL 1 • ISSUE #10
Before the rain moved in July 12, the Akron Black Stockings--featured in Issue 9--made the best of the weather, playing other vintage base ball teams from around the state in the Akron Cup Vintage Base Ball Exhibition at Stan Hywet. (PHOTOS: Paul Hoffman/paulhoffmanphoto.com)
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growing upAkron 6 th ANNUAL
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6-9 pm ROCKIN’ SOUNDS at THIRSTY DOG BREWING CO. FESTIVE ACTIVITIES
This event sells out. You must make a reservation in advance online at cgfsevents.org.
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JIM & CHERYL NILSEN ARE AKRON! THEY SUPPORT CHILD GUIDANCE & FAMILY SOLUTIONS
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Food, food, food, food, food, food... we like food. We like Akron food best.