JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 • THEDEVILSTRIP.COM
6 Who’s fighting Ohio’s ‘Pink Tax’? 15 A SHRUBBERY!!!! 24 Resignations were made
Daring to be Stupid
This photo has nothing to do with
Weird Al but the story on page 40 does
Akron Art Museum | Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia EVENTS Moving Connections * Fridays, June 10, 17, 24 at 11:30 am Moving Connections, a wellness program of Verb Ballets, is a movement workshop designed for the senior community to encourage creativity, engage social interaction and deepen an appreciation of the arts through the joy of movement. The program is designed for all ability levels and can be done while seated. FREE, but registration is required. For more information about sessions contact Desmond Davis, Verb Ballets Education and Outreach Coordinator, at email@example.com or call 216-397-3757. Mark Mothersbaugh Trolley Tour * Thursday, June 16 at 6:30 pm Janet Macoska’s Chili Dog Mac photo beside the Akron Civic Theater commemorates DEVO’s “Satisfaction” video shoot in 1978, but not all of Akron’s DEVO history is similarly labeled and identified. Many of the important DEVO-related landmarks no longer exist, requiring a diehard spud and music historian to properly point out where they were. Luckily, DEVO nerd David Giffels will lead participants on a trolley tour of important Mark Mothersbaugh and DEVOrelated venues—including the Crypt nightclub, an old rubber stamp shop at Quaker Square and Harlan Hall, the band's secret Akron headquarters. End the tour at the Akron Art Museum and explore the Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia exhibition. Mothersbaugh-Inspired Sun Catcher with Amy Mothersbaugh * Thursday, June 23 at 6:30pm What shines with beauty and glows with more natural Akron energy than a red glass DEVO dome inspired suncatcher? Learn basic soldering techniques as you create a sun catcher with a decidedly Akron flavor. For tickets, visit AkronArtMuseum.org/eventregistration
Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia Through August 28, 2016 a shared exhibition presented by AKRON ART MUSEUM & MOCA CLEVELAND Myopia is the first retrospective of the work of Mark Mothersbaugh, spanning the beginning of his career in the early 1970s through the present. Mothersbaugh’s work has both embraced handmade qualities and also incorporated elements of consumer culture, asking the question: how can we be ourselves in the face of an impersonal, consumer-driven society? His answer is complex. Mothersbaugh doesn’t simply advocate for a war of the organic against the mechanistic. He also doesn’t maintain a simple, ironic distance from the synthetic nature of modern society. Instead, the artist insists that there is room for individual creativity in consumer society. Sometimes the picture he paints is dark and cynical and sometimes playful and light, but he always makes the case that it is possible to find personal pleasure and artistic expression in the realms of both technology and the handmade. The band DEVO, with its homespun robotic image, is one articulation of that aesthetic vision, which takes a multitude of forms in Mothersbaugh’s larger body of work. The Akron Art Museum and MOCA Cleveland are presenting Mothersbaugh’s work in shared, simultaneous exhibitions across Northeast Ohio. Myopia in Cleveland focuses on experimentation, performance, and sound, presenting the artist’s early sketchbooks, documentation of DEVO’s first performances, the band’s development, and Mothersbaugh’s ongoing experimentation with manipulated musical instruments. Myopia at the Akron Art Museum turns its attention on Mothersbaugh’s visual art practice, including installations of recent sculpture and prints, and a collection of 30,000 postcard-sized drawings he has created and utilized for inspiration and exploration throughout his career. By visiting the exhibition in both venues, audiences will get a wide-ranging perspective of Mothersbaugh’s prolific output of artwork, music, ideas, invention, and distinctive sense of humor. Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia is organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver. Its presentation at the Akron Art Museum is generously sponsored by The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, John P. Murphy Foundation, AudioTechnica and EarthQuaker Devices. Special thanks go to the Department of Print Media & Photography at Kent State University and TKM. Media sponsorship is provided by Western Reserve PBS and 91.3 The Summit.
Reading Under the Roof Cloud Book Club: A Visit From the Goon Squad * Thursday, June 30 at 6pm Join our book club for a discussion of A Visit from the Goon Squad written by Jennifer Egan, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the National Book Critics Circle Award and a Penn/Faulkner Award Finalist. FREE, but registration is requested. Art Talk: The Beginning Was the End Thursday, June 30 at 7pm Jade Dellinger and David Giffels, authors of the definitive band biography Are We Not Men? We Are Devo! talk about the many worlds of Mark Mothersbaugh. FREE School of Rock Summer Camp (Weekly in July) * July 7, 14, 21, 28 from 1–3pm Singers and drummers aren’t the only artists in the world of rock. There are album covers, posters, and t-shirts to be designed! We’ll get inspired by the Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia exhibition then put our musical and visual talents center stage to create rock and roll masterpieces. This month long music-inspired art camp will leave you feeling like a rock star. Recommended for ages 7-12. Zine Workshop with Amy Mothersbaugh * Thursday, July 7 at 6:30pm Join the zine craze and learn about Mark Mothersbaugh’s early adventures in zine making. Participants are encouraged to bring images and scraps to personalize your zine, but materials will also be provided. For tickets, visit AkronArtMuseum.org/eventregistration Second Saturday Curator Gallery Talk: Violence, Decay and Visual Metaphor Saturday, July 9 at 1:30pm Assistant Curator Elizabeth Carney will discuss the underlying dark themes visible among photographs in the exhibition PULP, including works by Richard Misrach, Aaron Siskind and Tom Young. Get an insider's look at artworks in the museum's collection on the second Saturday of every month, with curator-led tours. Free with gallery admission. Everything Is Awesome: Mark Mothersbaugh Painting Party Thursday, July 14 at 6:30pm Join smARTStudio to paint a portrait of Mark Mothersbaugh on canvas. Learn the process of photo transferring onto canvas and painting FUNdamentals. For tickets, visit AkronArtMuseum.org/ eventregistration Save the Date! Bud & Susie Rogers Garden Opening Celebration Saturday, July 16 from 2–9pm (Member Preview 12–2pm) FREE and Open to All at 2 pm Bring the whole family to Akron Art Museum's public dedication of the Bud and Susie Rogers Garden. We've planned a full day of activities for all ages, including music, dance and performances by community artists and arts organizations, as well as hands-on art activities for everyone.
AKRON ART MUSEUM • One South High • Akron, OH 44308 • 330-376-9186 • akronartmuseum.org
table of contents
Replacing a totally not-beloved mural
The Big Idea a-foot in the CVNP
Exploring North Hill’s hidden gems
The Devil Strip 12 E. Exchange Street 2nd Floor Akron, Ohio 44308
Publisher: Chris “electric with rage” Horne
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 330-555-GHOSTBUSTERS
Art Director: Alesa “doesn’t sleep” Upholzer
13 Knight wants to paint the town ASAP
M. Sophie “Has Many Names, Wears Many Hats” Hamad Email: email@example.com Visuals Editor: Svetla “The Balkan Comrade” Morrison Copy Editor: Jessica “My name is not Jecca” Cherok
14 We art in your general direction
17 Mr. DeWeese is effing up our ethos 21 We can’t let ‘em tear down St. Paul’s
26 AA & the True Meaning of Anonymity
40 Five Akron bands you ought to know
42 Another good year for live music
44 Theron Brown is ‘Miles Ahead’ of us
in a pile of cat nip! Figaro requires a special diet for something called cystitis. Cystitis is an inflammation of the bladder. This condition does not affect Figaro's life span or quality of life, but he will require a special diet. Please feel free to call our shelter if you have any questions regarding Figaro's special needs. If
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you're interested in meeting Figaro, please stop PAWSibilities, Humane Society of Greater Akron and ask to meet him today! Sherman is a 5 year old Puggle who weighs about 25 pounds. He is a fun and loving boy who enjoys getting petsand belly rubs. He gets along well with other dogs but they better be ready to play! If you are thinking, sure this can be my man, stop in and meet Sherman today at PAWSibilities, Humane Society of Greater Akron. PAWSibilities Humane Society of Greater Akron 7996 Darrow Rd., Twinsburg, OH 44087 | 1.888.588.8436 | 330.487.0333 firstname.lastname@example.org | www.summithumane.org | www.facebook.com/summithumane
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
The Editorial Team
THE ARTS Lead Editor........................................Bronlynn “Space Kitty” Thurman Asst. Editor.............................Megan “Oxford comma slayer” Combs Literary Arts Editor..................Noor "Nervous Poodle Poet" Hindi COMMUNITY & CULTURE Lead Editor ................Katie “Miss Jackson if You’re Nasty” Jackson Asst. Editor...........................................Jessica “Spreadsheets!” Cherok Asst. Editor................Ilenia “Our Short, Tired Garbanzo Bean Eatin',
WTF Video Girl Writer” Pezzaniti
MUSIC & ENTERTAINMENT Music............................................. Brittany “Sass Master Flash” Nader Music..................... Clay “Needs a Whimsical Middle Name” Chabola Entertainment............... Andrew “Has a Mighty Fine Beard” Leask Staff Writers, Columnists & The A/V Club:
28 Guide to Farmers’ Markets
TJ "loves that movie ‘Newsies’" Masterson Email: TJ@thedevilstrip.com
table of contents
Director of Sales & Distribution:
Emily “Lady Beer Drinker” Anderson; Melanie “newbie for now” Anderson; Holly “The Wanderer” Brown; Emily “Potty Perfectionist” Dressler and Marissa Marangoni, Bathroom Culture Enthusiast; Brian “Wemlo Twinge” Dunphy; Gabe “Softballin’” Gott; Dan “The Akron Knight” Gorman; Paul “I don’t write but I can draw” Hoffman; Chris “the Film Freak” Kessinger; Jacob Luther, the Towny Townie Toonist; Theodore “Quieter Days” Mallison; TJ “Don’t Call Me Shirley” Masterson; Mary “not so contrary, in fact, quite easy to get along with” Menzemer; the absolutely real and totally non-fictional Georgio Pelogrande; Roger Riddle, Wears the Purple Pants; Nicole “likes the way Akron sounds” Stempak; Steve “is not a zombie” Van Auken; and The Shane Wynn Supremacy ———————————————————— CONTACT US: Office .....................................................................(330) 842-6606 General Info .........................................email@example.com Advertising ........................................... firstname.lastname@example.org Distribution ..................................... email@example.com Website .................................................. www.thedevilstrip.com Facebook ....................................Facebook.com/thedevilstrip Twitter .................................................................. @akrondevilstrip Instagram ................................................................ @thedevilstrip ————————————————————
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 of The Devil Strip are copyright 2016 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.
Pub Notes >>
A HOPE GROWS IN BUCHTEL
request to demolish parts of Quaker Square and all of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church (update on pg. 21); and One World Schoolhouse, an overlooked effort to start a private K-12 school on campus — came through again.
It’s only fitting it happened this way. Frustrating, Suddenly I was chasing down sources and but fitting.
About the Cover "Shake Hands with Gonga!" As you probably already know, Shane Wynn is one of my favorite people to work with in Akron. But before that, she became one of my favorite people in Akron. That started officially when I first saw this photo of the Mattress Factory Outlet gorilla, which she shot in 2010 to hang in the office of a local graphic designer, Michael West Cygnus Design. She submitted this image to our call for art to wrap our newspaper boxes, funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign. We're finally in a position to complete that project -- I promise -- and Shane's work will appear on a box or two. In the meantime, I figured it'd be fun to put it on the cover because it reminds me of a scene from John Huston's "Wise Blood," based on the novel by Flannery O'Connor, who lived in Milledgeville, Ga., where I'm sitting now as I type. In that scene, a young man dressed in
manager showed up and took over the heavy lifting, but I’ll never forget how we all pulled together. Especially, the three bright folks who reported to me on our web team. The work I want to do is “slow journalism,” not breaking news, but I can’t help thinking
I was 700 miles away from the trustees’ press conference at the University of Akron,
searching for someone to cover the press conference, finding Chris Drabick (pg. 24) in time to pack up and hit the road again. Riding shotgun while my wife navigated Atlanta’s
about that morning now because I wonder how much The Devil Strip could accomplish with three paid editorial staff, let alone any for digital media. While other outlets scramble
when Scott Scarborough’s resignation was announced. But still, we had it covered. We were lucky, as we’ve been since the start,
ever-awful traffic, I posted Drabick’s photos on social media, gave our new managing editor a plan for the web and decided to push this
to get “community reax” or ask officials what they think about the thing someone else said at a press conference, I want to do thoughtful,
because of our connections and our community — our relationship to Akron. Preparation meets opportunity.
issue back a day so we could update the magazine appropriately.
contextualized reporting. Why? Because we are nakedly pro-Akron and our only reason to exist is to foster connections and build community
It reminded me of the day a gas tanker
among people who love this place too.
This happened on deadline for us so I was up at 4 am, working at my little sister’s dining room table to put this issue to bed: reading
exploded in a 20-car pileup three years ago on national signing day in Macon, Ga. I was a news manager at the market-leading TV
It’s also why I want to end on this note: The work is just beginning.
proofs and tweaking stories; checking in with ad clients; increasing our print run; setting up drop-off for distribution; organizing the “Liberal Redneck” comedy show featured on
station. Scores of high school athletes in our 26-county coverage area were committing to Finding a new president is just the start of college scholarships so practically every available an uphill climb. For UA to grow again, the reporter — sports, news, weather — was community at-large must be as engaged as it
our back cover; prepping the next Live at Lock 4 event; working out plans for Unbox Akron’s future; and thinking about what to say in my
already out the door when we first learned of a tanker explosion and 20-car pileup on I-16 caused by dense fog. The crash claimed four
has become over the past year, manifesting our love of Akron into attention on and effort for the university. The good news is we know
Pub Notes ...Hm, probably something about the Mark Mothersbaugh talk or my Weird Al
lives but the morning rush hour had just begun, so our small crew went into panic mode to
now that attention can affect change so it isn’t enough to blame the administration or the
interview, or both!
warn the public, afraid that the problem was about to get much worse.
trustees. We have a role, as a community, in what happens next.
Then I got a call. The same network of sources that enabled us to break so many big stories — UA’s failed ITT Tech deal; TrustNavigator’s lack of experience; the plans for a “Grand Entrance” at the baseball team’s expense; the state funding
And I — a print-turned-web guy — was in charge. You need a tweet, I’m your dude, but making the call to break into network programming? Yikes. Fortunately, the station
a gorilla suit unintentionally terrorizes people as shouts "Shake hands with Gonga!" as he surprises them by jumping out of nowhere. That weird, wacky playfulness is something I see in Shane and her work and in Akron, which makes it perfect for us! The photo hangs with others in her Akron blue series. To hire Shane, or admire her work online, visit
shanewynn.com (That's her awesome kid, Malcolm, leaping like Superman. PHOTO: Shane Wynn/shanewynn.com)
lifesourceyoga.com • 330.835.9945 AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
In Brief W H Y
What is the "Pink Tax?” GRETA JOHNSON
T H I S
L AW S U I T A N D
Upworthy recently reported that according to a 2015 study conducted by the New same products men buy. While critics say several women’s products are developed
T H E S E
differently — i.e. - not just made pink for marketing purposes — and others suggest
TA K I N G
AIM AT OHIO’S
women just buy the cheaper male version of things, the reality in states like Ohio is harder to dismiss. Sometimes called the “Tampon Tax,” only women are subject to the tax on feminine hygiene products, which are considered luxury items by the state despite being classified by the FDA as medically necessary products.
‘PINK TAX’ Why is it in the news?
branded for women but essentially the same as men’s items. For instance, pink razors. York City Department of Consumer Affairs, women pay more 42% of the time for the
LAWMAKERS A R E
“Pink Tax” sometimes refers to the higher price women pay for items that are
female consumers in Ohio.
Community Center. And of course, food at
of going without a meal. That can lead to toxic
Last May, Rep. Greta Johnson and Rep. Emilia Sykes, who both represent Akron — woot! woot! — tried to end the tax by introducing
Isn't it just a few cents here and there? Johnson says, “Keep in mind women will
grocery stores is tax-exempt, which includes the likes of Mountain Dew, Hostess Cupcakes and Pork Rinds
shock syndrome, which can cause infertility or even death.
HB 272, which would end sales taxes on essential feminine hygiene products including tampons, liners, cups, napkins and other forms of feminine hygiene in connection with the
make these purchases every month for 30 years — sometimes up to 40 years — you have to multiply that times ‘a few cents’.” Plus, she notes, that number climbs if you
Who does this really hurt? Low-income women. Homeless women, especially. If an item isn't tax exempt then it
Why hasn't the bill been passed yet? “It is uncomfortable for men to talk about — it’s uncomfortable for many women, too,” Johnson says. That silence contributes to the
menstrual cycle. However, in a climate where Planned Parenthood has been defunded, HB 272 hasn’t gotten far in the male-dominated
have daughters. Then put it all in context with women making, on average, 77 cents for every dollar a man makes for the same work.
can't be purchased with public assistance. “If you are food insecure, you’re tampon insecure,” Johnson says. When women live in
problem, but it certainly doesn’t help that HB 272 was proposed by two female Democratic representatives. While the lawsuit works its way
and Republican-controlled state legislature, but the issue isn’t dead yet. Four Cleveland-area women have filed a class action lawsuit to end the “Tampon Tax” and refund $66 million to
Financials aside, consider that the legislature recently passed exemptions for gold bullion and YMCA memberships — but not memberships to other religious organizations like the Jewish
food insecurity, they are more likely to choose unhealthy alternatives to commercial feminine hygiene products, sacrificing their health instead of putting their families at further risk
through the courts and lawmakers like Johnson and Sykes try to advance the conversation, there’s still hope for HB 272, if it gets a second hearing by the Ways and Means Committee.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT… SAY GOODBYE TO STAGE LEFT AND THE TRAPPER KEEPER MURAL Bad News:
Akron lost another historical building. This time downtown, right next to the Civic Theatre.
The demolition is taking with it a mural whose admirers are few and far between.
Having sat vacant for a decade, the rest of the block is slated for actual redevelopment.
entertainment venues and staples like The Peanut Shoppe, The Lockview, Baxter’s and Cat Tacos, er, El Gato. Which is why we asked our Facebook folks for some ideas about what they’d like to see downtown and how they’d replace the old mural. File under “That’s a Good Idea!”: “I would like a terrace (where Stage Left was) where people could get a drink or smoke after the show. It would give it that old school Broadway feel.” — Chris K.
dispensary? Anything is better than nothing!” — Michael G.
“An affordable diner-style spot with a rockin'
“I would like to see retail on the first floor of buildings with residential and commercial above. Could even have hotel above. ...Essentially, I can park my car on a Friday and
course.” — JT B.
not move it until Monday. Walkable living.” — Rebecca J.
Main St Akron in its heyday, perhaps with
retro soda fountain/ice cream selection might be a nice addition. With a gym next door, of
What about the mural? “A LOCAL artist should paint a depiction of
the Flatiron building in it. We don't need a nationally known artist. They have no ties to the “Bookstore! Maybe a community garden on the community or vested interest in it.” side or a patio to sit for food truck season?” — Stephanie D. — Jessica K.
“It would be cool to see reasonably priced lofts “I think any variation of businesses that are meant to be open to the public (not more business offices) will make downtown more of
“Why not engage with a major artist and create a tourist attraction? Something that might
In case you missed it… Stage Left, the empty building next to the Akron Civic Theatre, came down in late May because it was beyond
to inspire downtown living. I'd love to see an organic juice bar, indie bookstore, maybe a good burger place like The Rail.” — Tyler B.
preservation. Like fall-through-the-floor can’t save it. That’s because the developer who owned it did nothing with it for about a
“Combo bookstore/bar (miss having this… a place where women especially can sit
engage more artists to come to Akron and live and work in Akron — for example, think about a walkable destination. A permanent bike rental Swoon's Braddock Tile Co. or the Shepard station would be cool, too!” (continued on page 7) — Katie CR.
decade. Public safety aside, there’s another benefit: The mural overlooking Lock 3 went down with the ship, which means there’ll soon
comfortably w/ book and glass of wine or beer. Also, a noodle shop… Mitchell's ice cream… a Thirsty Dog or even Great Lakes outpost…”
“Remember Scott's five and dime with the soda fountain?
be a big, blank canvas downtown. But wait, there’s more!
— Amanda G.
THAT would be cool!” — Rick P.
“...a pit stop for people biking the towpath!” The Horrigan administration is trying to hurry up redevelopment for that collection of eyesores and opportunity in the heart of Main
— Anne O. “A grocery. A bakery. An ice cream parlor.
along with the mural that adorned
Street. That could be a huge boon for an area downtown that already features our largest
Restaurants. Books store. Residential. Clothing store. Boots and shoes. Medical marijuana
the side of the building.
Pictured right: The demolition of a downtown, historical building,
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
by Dr. Terry Albanese,
Assistant to the Mayor for Health, Education and Families
Why the City of Akron welcomes Stark State College
Educational attainment and health are inextricably tied to income and the quality of
Stark State College Akron Campus makes such
the Preparing Akron Students for Success
By 2020, two-thirds of job openings will require some postsecondary education or training, yet
(PASS) and dual enrollment/College Credit Plus programs — that will lead to increased local enrollment. Credit transfer agreements with
only about 21 percent of Akron residents hold a bachelor’s degree. This needs to double! In fact, Summit Education Initiative has set the lofty goal of adding 48,000 degrees or skilled
the University of Akron, Kent State University, NEOMED, Ohio State University and other local universities allow students in specific associate degree programs to continue on to bachelor’s
training certificates to the adult population of Summit County by 2025. Having both the University of Akron and Stark State College
or other degree programs.
Akron means locally accessible academic opportunities for a larger range of career and professional interests.
Geographic accessibility is one thing, but
A community college presence is not only a
financial accessibility is another. Stark State College is dedicated to affordable, quality education and career success. By keeping tuition costs down, assisting students with
does not have a community college. As a result we are missing out on a significant resource for our residents. Community colleges, like Stark State College, offer different educational
direct benefit to our residents; it also helps Currently 1 out of every 4 students enrolled promote broader goals for Akron and the at Stark State College in their North Canton region. The report from the Mayor’s Blue Ribbon and Barberton locations hails from Akron, but
applications for financial aid and scholarships, and providing the supports and curriculum that promote on-time graduations, Stark
resources, that are unequivocally valuable to a community, they can focus more exclusively on the academic and career needs of students and they can typically do it at a lower cost. Several
attainment by leveraging resources and partners Akron METRO bus line, Stark State College at the local and regional level. The addition Akron will dramatically increase accessibility for of Stark State College Akron is a celebrated students of all ages and income levels.
life opportunities that follow. Akron-Summit County is one of the few urban counties in the nation – and the only one in Ohio – that
career preparations more accessible to Akron and Summit County residents.
Task Force noted that having an educated opportunities than you usually find in a research and skilled workforce is an important driver of university. Because they are not a university economic development and population growth with graduate, sports and other programs and and recommended increasing educational
occupations, that are currently in demand and provide a living wage, require specialized skills and credentials, but not a bachelor’s degree. A (continued from page 6) Fairey works in Charleston. We can also use national and international artists to work with regional artists, lead critiques and hire local artists to work on the project ... Maybe a Steven Powers mural project that works with Lock Three or Arts Lift kids?” — Alison C. “I like the idea of a depiction of what Main Street looked like in the early/mid 1900s. Something related to Akron's history of canals, rubber, invention, soap box derby, etc.” — Anthony B. “Leave the new construction wall blank and show it as an LCD projection screen for movies, or upcoming Akron cultural events. It would
response to that recommendation as well as to the recent 62.4 report that highlighted the local skills gap: the gap between residents’ current skill sets and those needed to compete in the beat a solitary static piece of nonsense that exists there now.” — Paul P. “Think a little greener! I propose a living mural!” — Katie C. “I think it would be cool to have a map of akron's distinct neighborhoods.” — Steve B. “No LeBron James mural/Nike ad.” — almost everybody
distance and transportation issues have been a consistent barrier to enrollment and program completion. Located on East Market Street at Perkins and Route 8, on the single most utilized
Stark State College has long-term, mutually beneficial partnerships in Akron — like its collaboration with Akron Public Schools in a screensaver to me.” — Dave R.
State College Akron will help to make higher education and career training the most affordable in the region. // Terry Albanese, Ph.D., joined the City of Akron after several years of experience conducting health services research at Summa Health System, teaching at The University of Akron and the Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), and serving as the Ward 6 City Council representative from 2001-2009.
is the best mural in Akron.” — Anthony B.
“It's a graphic representation of the marble history of Lock 3. Originally on the space of Lock 3 was the American Marble & Toy “Really??? Abomination: something that causes Manufacturing Company.” — Jonathan M. disgust or hatred.” — Denise McG. “I understand that it connects to the history of marbles in Akron, but it's still horribly done. “Yeah, it’s disgusting! It looks like someone That is just my opinion, though!” — Anthony B. shat neon all over the side of the building.” “This makes my day! The mural currently up is an abomination.” — Jason C.
— Jason C. “That mural could commemorate the lives lost
Not so much helpful as it is just funny: “Not the Trapper Keeper design!” — Michael McK. “I've never dug that mural...always looked like
“I mean no disrespect to whoever chose/created this mural, but it is absolutely awful. Sad to see Stage Left taken down, but I will not be sad to see this mural go. Take some notes on the mural on the side of Hazel Tree Interiors — that
in WWII and I would still rather paint over it in black. Sorry.” — Tim F. “How about a mural of all the buildings that have been demolished in Akron?” — Lauren B.
United Way of Summit County
VOLUNTEERS PLAY A VITAL ROLE IN UNITED WAY’S WORK TO MAKE OUR COMMUNITY STRONGER.
WhAT ThIS PLACE NEEDS.
we are hosting a variety of community engagement events in 2016, uniting volunteers to make a difference for our neighbors. the projects can accept large groups, and offer teambuilding and networking opportunities.
GET INVOLVED @ UWSUMMIT.ORG/VOLUNTEER great things happen when we LIVE UNITED! United Way of Summit County UWSUMMIT.ORG
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
Knight Cities Challenge winner
BRIAN AND TRACY DAVIS Occupation: Brian, Biomedical Engineer and Chairman, Department of Biomedical Engineering at UA; Tracy, Teacher in Euclid Hometown: Cape Town, South Africa Home Now: Moreland Hills Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org and exploreafoot.com (under construction)
WHAT'S YOUR BIG IDEA?
Germany. (Did you know that Akron has a sister
Germany, in which they offered “cartage”
HOW DO YOU HOPE YOUR BIG IDEA
Cuyahoga Explore-A-Foot, which was funded by the Knight Foundation’s Cities Challenge to encourage visitors to explore remote regions
city in Germany – Chemnitz?)
— hikers can have luggage transported from one accommodation to the other — we knew it would work. But could we get our sons,
HELPS AKRON GROW? We hope to attract people who only have time for a short-stay holiday. We’d like to invite them
of Cuyahoga Valley National Park by providing services and amenities, such as help with travel arrangements and baggage transport, that make it more accessible. (Read a longer, more
WHEN DID YOU KNOW YOUR BIG IDEA WAS A GOOD IDEA? We knew it was a good idea because we walked the Towpath and stayed at the bed and
who are millenials, to complete an overnight walk with us? It was the ultimate family time experience. We walked in twos and regrouped every few hours. The time was there to talk
to get off the Interstate rather than fly by. The area offers a unique experience, a combination of trails passing through a national park, small villages and a large city. The added feature of
eloquent version online at thedevilstrip.com)
breakfasts. We convinced friends of ours to walk with us and they were enthralled with the experience. However, there was one problem.
about anything and everything. Yes, they had their phones out, using Google Maps to locate and suggest cutting across every river or golf
the railroad through the park is the final piece in the puzzle. Who knows where the trails will lead? We plan to walk from Cleveland to New
WHY PURSUE IT? It is a way to bring locals into the National Park, a different way to showcase Akron to out-oftowners, maybe even attracting hikers from
We needed two cars or even three cars to transport our luggage or to allow us to return to original destination. Once we had decided to model it after a seven-day walking trip in
course to reduce the walk by a mile or two, or look up information on the canal system, but that was a small price to pay for the experience of walking with them.
Philadelphia this summer, over 70 miles of trails right here in our back yard. Anyone interested in joining us? Photo courtesy of Brian and Tracy Davis
WHY IS IT CALLED THAT? EJ THOMAS HALL by Amanda Sedlak-Hevener A modern building sits towards the western side of the University of Akron campus, on the corner of Hill Street and University Avenue. The building – E. J. Thomas Hall – is separated
working for the company in 1916, while still in high school. From that part-time job as a clerk, he eventually became the company’s president, then chief executive officer, and later chairman.
from the latter street by a large set of steps, a fountain, and some benches. Inside the
He retired in 1964, and stepped down from the Goodyear Board of Directors in 1971.
structure is an auditorium that holds over 2,900 people on three different levels, with an He remained active in the Akron community, impressive ceiling that moves in order to seal off and spent many years on the University of the upper balconies when necessary.
Akron Board of Trustees, to the point that E.J. Thomas Hall was named in his honor. It is
E.J. Thomas Hall, named for a former member of the University of Akron Board of Trustees, Edwin Joel Thomas, opened in October, 1973. Since then, it has hosted hundred of theater productions at both the local and national
common practice for university public buildings to be named either after someone influential, such as Thomas, or after specific donors who give money for that particular purpose.
levels, and has an annual attendance of over 400,000 people.
Thomas passed away in 1987. He is buried at Rose Burial Park in Fairlawn, Ohio. According to
Thomas was an Akron native. He was born to Nettie and her husband, Richard, in 1899.
his obituary, in lieu of flowers and other gifts, his family asked that donations be sent to the University of Akron, specifically for E.J. Thomas
Nettie also had Akron ties, and was related to the founder of Buchtel College, John R.
Hall, thus ensuring that his legacy lived on through the building.
Buchtel. (Buchtel College became the Municipal University of Akron in 1913. 50 years later, it officially was renamed the University of Akron.)
// Amanda Sedlak-Hevener is a local historian and a graduate student at the University of Akron.
Thomas spent the bulk of his career at the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company. He started
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn.
Urban Explorer: North Hill words and photos by Kristina Aiad-Toss
Streets lined with the likes of San Miguel Mexican grocery and the Himalayan Bazaar—North Hill is the quintessential “melting pot” of Akron. Inhabited by a large immigrant population, the stores and restaurants bleed with a tangible authenticity that cannot be found in any other neighborhood. Amongst the low-rise commercial buildings, haphazardly thrown between used car
STAN HYWET HALL & GARDENS
FATHER’S DAY JUNE 19
lots and mechanics, a few rare finds possess a uniqueness that rivals the diversity of the residents.
Fred’s Diner 930 Home Ave. • (330) 535-3733 Hours: Mon-Sun 6am-3pm A local veteran of over 25 years—this restaurant is a rare living testament to what a true diner should be—simple and cozy with traditional, delicious food, a family environment, and speedy service. Rather than have a modern breakfast, venture to Fred’s and take a journey back to the 1950s while
• 400 Antique & Collector Cars • Inner Circle Full Classics • Fast Lane Auto Aftermarket • Future Classics • Unusual Microcars • Food & Family Fun
you enjoy a mouth watering plate of eggs, bacon, and corn beef hash and sip a cup of black coffee.
Abbey Ann's 198 E Cuyahoga Falls Ave. • (330) 434-3100 Hours: Mon-Sat 9am-9pm; Sun 9am-8pm abbeyanns.org As you walk among the countless shelves overflowing with knick knacks and navigate through aisles of vintage furniture, join the treasure hunt at this unique thrift store. From a nostalgic vending machine to an impressive VHS movie collection, visitors can spend hours looking through the sea of antiques and rarities.
9am to 4:30pm 330.836.5533 714 N. Portage Path • Akron, OH 44303 For tickets and info.: stanhywet.org
Crest Bakery Address: 880 N Main St. • (330) 762-7669 Hours: M-F 6am-3pm, Sat 6-2pm, Sun 6am-12pm crestbakery.net Catering to Akron’s sweet needs since the
7 TH ANNUAL
1940s, this vintage style bakery offers delightful homemade varieties of cakes, bread, donuts, and pastries. With a more signature creations than your grandma, the atmosphere is extremely homey with a friendly staff.
La Soul 1001 E Tallmadge Ave. • (330) 633-3720 Hours: Sun-Thurs 11am-9pm, Fri-Sat 11am-12am facebook.com/lasoulfood/timeline At this amazingly authentic soul food restaurant, experience the life-changing taste of their homemade barbecue sauce as a fitting R&B playlist echoes in the background. From signature soul rolls to tender and tasty brisket, the friendly servers and speedy service come second only to the plates and the down and dirty southern atmosphere.
Arsenic and Old Lace 779 N Main St, Akron • (330) 794-7507 Hours: Mon-Sat 12-8pm, Sun 1-5pm facebook.com/Arsenic-Old-Lace-346952237731/
FRIDAY, AUGUST 12 6-9 pm at THIRSTY DOG BREWING CO.
Permeating with a “sex, drugs, and rock and roll” vibe, this offbeat store is bursting with a groovy collection of hippie memorabilia, from tie-dyed
MAKE YOUR RESERVATION TODAY FOR AKRON’S EVENT OF THE SUMMER!
Grateful Dead tapestries to a shocking selection of incense. Whether looking to reminisce in the
Visit cgfsevents.org or call CG&FS Development at 330.384.2882 or email@example.com
Woodstock days or just searching for a cool Beatles t-shirt, a visit to this psychedelic joint will never disappoint.
Please note: This is an Adults Only Event. Guests at the event must be 21 years of age or older.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE CGFS_GUA-DS-Ad.indd 1
5/19/16 2:04 PM
Your news feed is full of parenting advice.
So are our pediatricians. To find a pediatrician near you, visit akronchildrens.org/achpediatrics. WWW.THEDEVILSTRIP.COM
4/8/16 5:39 PM
EXPLORING THE ARTS IN AKRON
13 5QS WITH ‘LOVEBIRDS’ CREATOR DAVE WILSON 14 THE SOUND OF NEPALI APPLAUSE 18 CUYAHOGA VALLEY ART CENTER IS ON A MISSION
Bill Broun grew up in Akron and his roots here run deep here. His debut novel, “Night of the Animals,” which is coming out July 5, 2016 on the HarperCollins imprint Ecco, has been praised by writers and critics alike, picking up a coveted grand slam of starred reviews (aka - a big deal) from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal and Booklist. Guess what. We had the honor of being his first interview as a novelist and you can read it online this month at thedevilstrip.com/home/billbroun
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
ë by Noor Hindi and Bronlynn Thurman
Our picks for arts events in June
å ‹ Inside | Out Block Party
ç Mark Mothersbaugh’s “Myopia” è Into the Mold
‹ Neighborhood Art Celebration
June 11 - 9am Shadyside Park, Kenmore Take a free trolley ride through Akron Art Museum's Inside|Out Art exhibit that has been displayed throughout Kenmore. A museum docent will ride along to explain the displays. Seating is limited, so show up early!
Now through Aug. 28 Akron Art Museum Akron native Mark Mothersbaugh presents “Myopia,” a collection of drawings, films, paintings, sculpture and music. Mothersbaugh, co-founder of the band DEVO, has been making art for the last 40 years. Tickets for the exhibit are available at the art museum.
June 7 - 6pm to 8:30pm Northwest Family Recreation Center, 1730 Shatto Ave. The Neighborhood Art Celebration is an opportunity for communities to embrace their local artists. This time, we’re partying with Ward 8. This event is free to the public.
å All-City Musical: Beauty and the Beast
é The Maker Sessions:
June 25 - 7pm Firestone Park Community Center Directed and co-written by Katie Beck, “Into the Mold,” is a play inspired by Firestone Park’s rich history with a modern twist. There are no tickets, but donations are encouraged. All proceeds will help fund Beck’s Knight Arts Challenge project Nepali Applause (see page 14).
June 15 - 5:30pm to 9pm Summit Artspace Arts Alive! honors outstanding artists, arts leaders and arts supporters who give their
June 17 - 7:30pm June 18 - 2:30pm and 7:30pm
Crafty Your Creative Business
June 22 - 6pm to 9pm
June 2 through June 26, time varies
Akron Civic Theatre A 60-plus member cast and crew of students
Bit Factory Crafty Mart is hosting a new series of
Weathervane Playhouse Spamalot is a musical based off of Monty
from all around Summit County will host the 5th annual All-City Musical, this year featuring Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. The musical is
entrepreneurial workshops for local makers. Here, business owners can share knowledge and resources on various entrepreneurial topics for developing and promoting small,
Python and the Holy Grail. Directed by Dave Stebbins, the musical features the adventures of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Tickets are $26 and can be purchased
but visionary businesses and hobbies. Tickets
at weathervaneplayhouse.com. For more
are $20 and are available at craftymart.org/ the-maker-sessions/. Tickets include snacks and Thirsty Dog brews.
information, see page 15.
based on the 1991 animated film. There will be three performances, and tickets start at $10. They can be purchased at akroncivic.com or at the theatre box office.
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
ë Arts Alive!
time and talent to enriching Akron’s creative community. Also returning to the biannual event is the Out-of-the-Box auction and exhibition. Reserve tickets now through June 12 at summitartspace.org. Photo credits: Weathervane Playhouse, Disney, Crafty Mart, Arts Alive!
We spoke with Akron native Tessa Gaffney about her presentation of “Hope Will Never be Silent,” a play that takes a compassionate look at the Heroin
addiction in her family for as long as I've known her - a lucky 11 years. In the last year alone, we have seen heroin claim the lives of old classmates, coworkers,
epidemic that affects so many people.
and friends and we just didn't know what else to do.
Sophie Hamad: How did you get involved with this event? Tessa Gaffney: I had done another cabaret-type performance - also called "Hope Will Never Be Silent,"
SH: What is the goal of this event? What do you hope it will accomplish? TG: I hope it starts a conversation about how to combat the heroin epidemic in Akron and beyond.
although it was about gay rights at that time - at the Interbelt a couple years ago. When I started working at
I hope it provides those with no experience with addiction a deeper understanding of what it's actually
the Civic in March, Howard Parr, the executive director, asked me if I would like to perform it on their stage. After talking to the cast, my best friend and I decided that this issue was more urgent right here, right now.
like. I hope it reminds those who are struggling that they are not alone. I hope it strives toward something better than mere existence.
SH: Why is the heroin epidemic important to
The play will be hosted in a cabaret setting where the actors and the audience are on the Civic stage
you personally? TG: My best friend has shouldered the weight of
together. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at akroncivic.com.
5 questions with
LIVE MUSIC, CARD READERS, POETRY, MASSAGES AND MORE
A COMIC ILLUSTRATOR AND CREATOR FINDS HIS FOOTING IN AKRON by Megan Combs As David Wilson completes work on magazine illustrations during the day, he’s finding his
is what got me back into it.
place in Akron’s comic illustrator and creator world by night. The Brimfield native, now living in Stow, is the author of the graphic novel “Lovebirds.” He describes it as a dark fantasy
MC: When you weren’t creating art, what were you doing? DW: Initially, I quit art to do music. I played metal bands, and I was always hanging out at
story about a girl who goes on a journey to find the necromancer who can bring her father back from the dead. I sat down with the tattooed illustrator to find out more about where he’s headed.
Annabell’s. That’s one of my favorite hangouts, but I’m also partial to Highland Square Records. MC: What do you love about creating comics? DW: Art, design and storytelling are all combined into one thing. It’s not a movie, but you can still tell a great story using all three elements. I love the project management of it all too.
Megan Combs: How did you get started in comics? David Wilson: I liked comics as a kid, but then I kind of grew out of them. About five or six years ago,
MC: What’s the hardest part about being an illustrator and creator in Akron?
I started getting back into it. I’ve always been a creator and illustrator in some way so I went to Kent State for a Visual Communication Design degree. Being around art again
Pictured above: David Wilson; The cover of David’s book “Lovebirds.” All photos courtesy of David Wilson.
kind of get together and network. I’m kind of a hermit, but I want to get out there more. I think that more local businesses should hire local artists and display more art in their shops.
no goats no glory — Custom pieces include lighting, wood pieces and metal fabrication as well as custom jewelry, aprons, boho-style clothing, gypsy ﬂags as well as monthly tarot and oracle reading and massage therapy, acoustic artists and more. — HOURS: Mon-Tues 12-6 * Wed closed Thurs-Fri Sat 10-6 * Sun 12-4
MC: You have a lot of tattoos. Are they an extension of your art? DW: All of my tattoos are designed by the tattoo artist. I spend a lot of time in tattoo shops. They’re just another connection to art. See more of David’s designs and magazine illustrations at www.workdavidwork.com. Find his book “Lovebirds” on Amazon. // Megan, who didn’t own any comic books until a month ago, has developed a comic book addiction.
DW: There aren’t a lot of local groups for us all to Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn
'Saturate This City in Art' Knight Art Challenge winner Kristi Wall shares her plan for public art domination in Akron. by Megan Combs
risti Wall is on a mission to make Akron the public art capital of the world. As
one of the Knight Arts Challenge award winners, Wall is raising money to make her project “Akron Street Art Project” a reality. The first step is to create a 501c3 nonprofit to fund it, she said, and in order to get the promised $25,000 from the Knight
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
Foundation, Wall must first raise a matching amount of money. “I’m focused on executing public works of art in and around Akron,” Wall said. “I want to have permanent murals, sculptures, installations and creative placemaking.” (continued on page 16)
WHERE ART AND TECH MERGE
How two organizations found a way to bridge the gap between two unlikely communities. words and photos by Bronlynn Thurman Akron has a thriving arts scene and a blossoming tech community that both use creativity to bring about new ideas. Interestingly enough, rarely do those two worlds collide.
to a visual artist who’s listening to live jazz being played by two incredible people and that creates a pretty special sort of environment where collaborations that you didn’t think could exist prior kind of come to fruition.”
One random Tuesday night in May, the nonprofit ArtsNow and local coworking space OSCTechLab attempted to bridge the gap. They gathered 40-plus artists and techies to meet on the Akron Civic Theatre stage to bond over food and booze.
Local musicians Dan Wilson and Theron Brown played jazz throughout the evening. The air buzzed with conversations, and the silos fell as people bonded over their creative natures.
“I feel that something really special happens when you bring creative people together
Some of those in the tech community have been wanting to engage with the arts for some time. One such person was Bryon Delpinal from
regardless of how that creativity manifests itself,” said Nicole Mullet, executive director of ArtsNow. “We’ve got a gentleman who’s creative and engaged with virtual reality talking
local software consulting company, Coffee and Code. “Innovation really spawns from taking someone who thinks outside the box and taking someone whose head is way inside
the box all day long, like myself, who is very focused on rules and merging whatever two ideas they have together because that’s when you really spawn new technology and new ways to think about things,” Delpinal said. After a lot of positive feedback, Mullet thinks that this might become more than just a oneoff event. She even imagines that the next one could potentially change the city for the better. “What I would love to see next is what if we gave them a problem to solve? What if we gave this group of dynamically talented and extremely different individuals a real-world issue that Akron is facing and let them fix it. We let
specific neighborhood together who can create something that is productive and impactful.”
people can add to, as well as chalk contests.
Mystery. Energy. Culture. K
Into the Mold is part of a non-profit theater organization called Gum-Dip Theatre. Beck
night Arts Challenge winner Katie Beck used these three words to describe her
project Nepali Applause, an open market performance festival that is soon to take place in the North Hill neighborhood. The celebration will be multidisciplinary— involving dance, music, theater and art. To encourage cross-cultural exchange, translators will be at the event interpreting stories and engaging Akron’s Nepalese population. “Since there are so many Nepalese people who live in the North Hill area, this is connecting them to Akron in an artistic and cultural
to attend Into the Mold, a play directed and co-written by Beck.
“Let them actually take that talent and that skillset and turn that eye on the community because at the end of the day that’s why all of us do what we’re doing. We’re here because we love the community because we want to provide resources and increase the bandwidth and see this prove to be a successful, vibrant community.” // Bronlynn, the artistic, elfin, tech maiden, loves both communities dearly and is excited to see what magic they can build.
by Noor Hindi
community-based art projects along the route. She said there will be a couple of murals that
kinds of exciting community events. One of her fundraising projects will take place during the Firestone Park Community Festival at the community center on June 25 from 11 am to 4 pm. At 7 pm, community members are invited
Live Painting. All photos courtesy of Bronlynn Thurman.
Katie Beck talks Nepali Applause, cross-cultural exchange and all things theatre
way,” Beck said. “As an artist, it is generally my mission statement to bring people in a
place in Spring 2017, Beck is planning all
Western Fruits Basket; Dan Wilson and Theron Brown;
them ‘hack’ the problem.” Her enthusiasm was infectious as she continued on.
Nepali Applause | To raise money for the festival, which takes
Pictured above: Hack the Arts crowd with food from
In an effort to match the $10,000 Beck was awarded by the Knight Foundation, the play will network of people who can support them. be pay what you can (whether it be 50 cents or Aside from that, she said that doing lots of $5). So far, Beck’s biggest challenge has been research about grants has also helped her. She working by herself to match the funds, as well as putting on the Nepali Applause festival on her own. Since receiving her theater degree from Allegheny College in Pennsylvania, Beck
said the sense of community and camaraderie in Akron is unlike anything she has seen before.
has been working on reinstating herself in the art community, as well as trying to help out as
to help and support each other’ and I don’t think that happens in other places’,” Beck said.
“There is a common theme of like ‘we’re here
much as possible. “Coming back, I wanted to reinvest in my Keep up with Beck by
The show is inspired from Firestone Park’s rich
community but it was hard because being a high school student and growing up here is different than being an adult who is
history, but Beck has added a modern twist to it by adding comedic scenes. She also describes the format of the play as a Jimmy Fallon meets
functioning as an artist,” Beck said. “It’s been difficult establishing myself in the networks that are already so beautifully established in
or visiting her website
Johnny Carson set up. “The lens is the talk show, but the theme is Firestone Park. So it’s
Akron, which is a part of why I love it because there’s so many great artists and people doing wonderful things. However it is hard to be new
founded Gum-Dip Theatre last year.
going to be kind of crazy and wild, but the idea is that it’s for, with and about Firestone Park,” Beck said.
in that environment.” In terms of advice Beck has for future grant
During the parade event, Beck will add
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
winners, Beck advised individuals to find a
following Gum-Dip Theatre on Facebook,
www.gumdiptheatre.com. Photos courtesy of Katie Beck and Jason Sakal Photography // Noor once pretended to be the soothsayer in a Julius Caesar production. She wasn’t very good, but nevertheless, you can follow her on twitter @MyNrhindi.
R M A F 2016
Knights Who Say ‘Ni’ are Coming to Akron The cast of ‘Spamalot’ takes the Weathervane stage this month by Melanie Anderson Fans of “Monty Python” will want to clear their calendars during the month of June. King Arthur, his trusty servant Patsy and his colorful Knights of
Pictured above: Actress Dawn Sniadak-Yamokoski playing Lady of the Lake (Photo courtesy of Weathervane Playhouse. Pictured left: Actors Don Bernardo (left)
the Round Table will be riding into Akron as the musical comedy hits the stage at Weathervane Playhouse. Inspired by the 1975 cult classic film, “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” Spamalot brings back the irreverent humor, familiar scenes and hilarious characters audiences know and love. From the Knights who say “Ni” to the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, the musical also weaves in new twists to the original tale, as well as hilarious new dance numbers and songs. The original production has been a notable success, having received 14 Tony Award nominations and having been performed in over 25 countries. Bringing the musical to Akron has been an exciting opportunity for the cast and crew at the Weathervane Playhouse. Many of the cast and crew are already well acquainted with the source material, making the process that much more exciting.
the musical. “[These are] people you know and live next to, and yet they have a lot of talent and it's a chance for people to sort of break loose and laugh and have a fun time." For Don Bernardo, a huge Monty Python fan,
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
Located at Urban Eats / 51 E. Market St.
this is his third time to play the role of King Arthur alongside Patsy, portrayed by Brian Diehl. Included is a large and talented cast, many of whom are theater or vocal performance majors from nearby universities. Backstage, costumers, builders, musicians and others from the community are working together to make this an outstanding production.
Music Festival Checklist Bring Guitar Pack Camper Van Bring AAA Card
Bringing a well-known musical to the area is a wonderful opportunity for the community to get involved in an exciting event and experience the talent the Akron area has to offer. Stebbins said audiences should expect to laugh. "It's certainly not anything profound," he said. "It's a funny show -- a lot of laughter, a lot of crazy, silly things just like Monty Python always was."
From June 2 to June 26 at the Weathervane Playhouse. To find out more or to purchase ticket, visit weathervaneplayhouse.com. // Melanie Anderson is an aspiring writer and a professional wanderer. Her summer goals include attending plays and symphonies, starting work on her novel and adopting a cat.
JOIN US ON THESE DATES!
and Brian Diehl (right) (Photo by
"Live theater is so much better than movies because you see actual people from the area showcasing their talents,” Director Dave Stebbins said. This is his second time directing
Hit the Road & Rock on
One of Summit County’s
Best Kept Secrets Collide profiles The Cuyahoga Valley Art Center by Molly Hartong and Matt Weiss
The Cuyahoga Valley Art Center was established in 1934 by a group of talented
weaving, piano, print making, wood carving, voice, dancing and drama. Scheduled classes,
local artists and art teachers as The Arts and Crafts Club. In the late 1930s with the
demonstrations and workshops conducted by seasoned professionals from around the
country suffering from the Great Depression, art classes in the public school system were suspended.
world continue a rich offering to promote and provide opportunities in applied art training and art appreciation within the community.
Recognizing the need for a communityoriented art center, supporters decided to alter the club’s focus. With support from the
Today, CVAC continues to provide affordable, high-quality art instruction in a wide variety
superintendent of the Cuyahoga Falls School System, they reorganized and the name was changed to the Cuyahoga Falls Art Institute.
of media and events such as specialized weeklong workshops; art exhibitions and competitions for local artists, members and
Their mission was to develop art appreciation within the community through classes and exhibitions for adults and children.
instructors; paint parties; artist receptions and even free live theater. Receptions are free to the public and members can
During the 1940s the institute relocated and changed its name
attend classes, workshops and enter competitions for free or
several times. In 1959, the institute became the Cuyahoga Valley Art Center (CVAC) and established itself as a not-for-profit corporation. CVAC purchased the current building at 2131 Front Street in 1987 with aid from the Women’s Auxiliary of the Cuyahoga Valley Art Center. The Women’s Auxiliary was established prior to 1987 to help promote the activities of the art center, to conduct fund raising projects and to provide financial aid to the center.
at a discounted rate.
The building purchase gave the center a permanent home with 3,000 square feet of main gallery space, classrooms and multiple levels. Over the years countless students have enjoyed a plethora of studies ranging from drawing, composition, watercolor, pastels, charcoal, acrylics, casein, oil painting, pottery, enameling, sculpture, etching, collage, basket (continued from page 13) Acting as the director of the project, Wall, who is also the owner of Land of Plenty, is on a mission to make sure that she’s putting local
month. The city just keeps growing,” she said. “I just want to show the outside world
artists to work. She will oversee all art projects and make sure the art is not only high quality
First on her list for a face lift
but also displaying positive imagery.
there, Wall said she wants to “plant seeds” in places that are underused, such as Copley Road, Kenmore
“Akron has a lot of cool stuff happening internally, and it’s not as apparent on the outside that stuff is happening,” Wall said. “I want this to be a vibrant scene externally to attract people and make them want to stay. I want everyone to feel uplifted and inspired by all the art.”
what’s going on here.”
is downtown Akron. From
Boulevard or in North Hill. She wants to find local artists from those neighborhoods to create the displays.
To raise the matching funds, every event Wall hosts at Land of Plenty acts as a fundraiser for her project. First, she hosted a couple bands and raised about $1,500. Over Mother’s Day weekend, she hosted a plant sale and raised around $650. “The hardest part about raising the money is that people don’t know what you’re doing it for,” she said. “I’m establishing the 501c3 so
The mission of the CVAC is to promote active interest, involvement and appreciation of fine and applied arts for individuals of all ages. The center is continually looking for new media and new instructors to expand its educational selection and to attract youth and young professionals. Call the center at (330) 928-8092 or visit its website at www.cvart.org to find out what’s happening and how you can explore the wonderful world of art. // Part of the mission of Collide: Cuyahoga Falls is to bring awareness to the amazing and talented artists and art organizations within our community, to our community. Pictured Left: CVAC class. Photo and logo courtesy of Collide
completed because you’re still waiting on the money to get started.” For artists who are thinking of applying to future Knight Arts Challenges, Wall advised that they be realistic about the amount of money they’re asking for. Don’t go too overboard, she said, because you still have to match those funds. “This is an exciting project,” she smiled. “I want to make Akron the public art capital of the world and I want this project to be a lifelong endeavor. You don’t have to be a part of the arts to like what you see.”
“I want to recognize an artist the community
people know that I’m a non-profit and that their money is going toward something. Once
Wall hopes once her project is funded and underway that the art displays will help bring
didn’t know it had, and I want it to inspire other artists in the area,” she said. “I want
I become a non-profit, I can start applying for grants to get bigger donations.”
// Megan enjoys long walks through the Metro Parks
more business to the area.
to achieve the idea that art and creativity is appreciated here and I want it to inspire people to make an impact in their own way.”
She continued, “It’s hard to explain this project to people when none of the projects have been
Photo of Kristi Wall and ASAP logo courtesy of
“People are opening new businesses every
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
and never eats the last bite of a sandwich.
Putting the Humor in Poetry A commentary of Christopher Deweese's latest book of poetry by Noor Hindi
" . . . nasty, angry swans / we could almost feel
knew they were funny, and that seemed to be
/ fucking up our ethos" (lines 15-17). These are the words of poet Christopher Deweese in his second book of poems The Father of the Arrow is the Thought.
I had the opportunity to see him read at the Big, Big Mess last month where he gave voice to so many of my favorite poems, including "The Atmosphere," which is quoted above. As the first poem in the collection, it sets us up for the humor that Deweese incorporates in so much of his writings. Pictured above: Christopher DeWeese reading at Big Big Mess (Photo: Noor Hindi/The Devil Strip).
"I think in my poems, a lot of the humor comes from surprise,” Deweese said. “Like, all of a sudden, the poem shifts, and suddenly the speaker of the poem realizes something that hadn’t been telegraphed before. And the writer of the poem and the reader of the poem get to share in that discovery.” I was so excited when Deweese read the
One of the many aspects I love about The Father of the Arrow is the Thought is the simplicity of the collection cover, as well as the fact that the titles and the form with which Deweese writes follow the same unique pattern. Deweese was inspired by Paul Klee who wrote, “The father of the arrow is the thought: how do I expand my reach? Over this river? This lake? That mountain?” Hoping to achieve a similar energy, Deweese said the collection consists of a series of “long, skinny poems, full of short lines and no stanza breaks” to capture “a kind of arrow-like energy.” Deweese began his reading at the Big, Big Mess by sharing poems from a collection he is currently working on which is titled “Alternative Music.” He said it includes 120 poems, and has been writing it on and off for eight years. Aside from working on “Alternative Music,” Deweese is also the assistant professor of poetry at
funniest poem in the collection, "The Lake," which talks about the speaker's feelings of
Wright State University in Dayton.
jealousy towards it. When the speaker notices that his wife is more infatuated with the lake than him, he reacts in the best ways possible.
Keep up with Deweese by following his blog infiniteowls.blogspot.com or following him Twitter @chris_deweese. on
It reads, “I invested in ice-fishing / to have a reason / to cut the lake to pieces” (lines 22-24).
// For the full transcript of the interview, and for more poetic badassery, check out The Nervous Poodle Poet’s
blog at nervouspoodlepoetry.com. Then go write The personification of the lake is especially hilarious, “It hurt me / to see her so submerged, some poems, you poet, you. / always running from our car / to the lake’s wide blue arm” (lines 3-6).
Deweese credits his parents and Monty Python for his sense of humor. “We used to have these books of transcripts of every single Monty Python episode, and my brother and I used to perform them, even though we hadn’t watched a lot of them -- our local video rental store only carried a few,” Deweese said. “A lot of the jokes, in retrospect, I didn’t actually understand at the time, but I
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE Comics • June Comics • june Comics
culture & community CULTURE CLUB
20 FUN WITH LEBRON’S GRANDMOTHERS FAN CLUB 21 WHO WAS AKRON’S FIRST POLICEWOMAN? 22 STAY LOCAL: AVOIDING THE FRANCHISE STORE
This is Jason Horinger, owner of Birchwood Supply Co., with his mom Julie, celebrating Mother's Day with some "Mimosas for Mom" and some cool finds. This new shop, which features found and vintage goodies — a feast for the eyes if you want to score some Akronabilia — just opened up in Highland Square, taking over the space that was once home to Richard’s Florist. Get the deets at birchwoodsupplyco.com
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
culture & Community
‹ Sunday Story Time Sampler
é Yoga in the Galleries
promises to be soothing in more ways than
‹ Akron Skywalk History Hike
June 5, 12, 19, 26 at Akron-Summit Public Library, 2 pm A quick, half-hour story time might be all that you need to turn your young children
June 9 at Akron Art Museum, 6:30 pm Whether you’re new to yoga, or are an experienced practitioner, you’ll enjoy this particular session at the Akron Art Museum.
one. Your little ones will enhance their literary skills, while enjoying the companionship of a furry friend.
June 21 at Polsky Building, University of Akron Campus, 11:30 am – 1 pm View Akron from a different vantage point with this hike around the skywalks of the city. The
into lifelong readers. This Story Time Sampler is open to kids aged 3 through 9 (preschool through primary school) and accompanying
Taught by a certified yoga instructor, you’ll go over the basic poses and forms in one of the galleries at the museum. You’ll need to bring
ê Rubber City Road Rally
hike ends at the Cascade Plaza, where you can sit and eat your own brought from home brown bag lunch, or purchase it from a local vendor.
parents and caregivers.
your own yoga mat, but please keep in mind that bottles of water are not allowed in the galleries.
å World Oceans Day June 8 at Akron Zoo, all day Celebrate World Oceans Day during regular zoo hours at the Akron Zoo. There will be talks about ocean dwelling creatures, including jellyfish, octopus and more. Plus, you’ll receive half off one admission if you wear a Hawaiian shirt that day!
ç Brew at the Zoo June 9 at Akron Zoo, 6-9 pm Are you ready for 80s night? Grab your
è Moving Connections June 10, 17, 24 at Akron Art Museum, 11:30 am -12:30 pm This series of workshops is designed exclusively for seniors. Designed by the Verb Ballet in order to help seniors socialize with one another while stretching therapeutically, the exercises have been found to enhance cognitive skills. There is no charge for these workshops.
stonewashed jeans, high top sneakers, and
‹ Paws for Reading
off-the shoulder sweatshirts and head on over to the Akron Zoo. Brew at the Zoo is a 21-andover event complete with food trucks, a DJ, and sample tastings from local breweries
June 11 at Norton Branch of Akron-Summit Public Library, 11 am Bring your child and have him or her read to
of the Akron-Summit Public Library. This event
a certified therapy dog at the Norton Branch
LeBron James Grandmothers Fan Club to Hold their 4th Annual Fundraising Event According to Alder Champman, President and Founder of The LeBron James Grandmothers
June 11 at Perkins Stone Mansion, 4 pm Join in on a scavenger hunt through the streets of Akron! All that you need is a car (classic cars are more than welcome), a driver, a navigator, and to be over the age of 21. The road rally end at Turkeyfoot Island Club, where dinner will be served. Lawn games, s’mores around the fire pit, and an open bar are all included.
ë 59th Annual Father’s Day
í Crafty Mart – The Maker Sessions June 22 at The Bit Factory, 6-9 pm Learn the basics of pricing, budgeting and bookkeeping in order to help you turn your creative business dreams into a successful reality. The second of these important sessions focuses on the numbers involved in running a business, from start to finish.
June 19 at Stan Hywet Hall, 9 am – 5:30 pm More than just a car show, this Father’s Day celebration features live classical music performed by the Tuesday Musical Association and En Plein Air paintings completed before your eyes. You can also wander Stan Hywet’s gardens, or enjoy some Canalway Questing, as
Photo credits: Brew at the Zoo courtesy of Akron Zoo. Moving Connections courtesy of Moving Connections. Car Show courtesy of Stan Hywet.
well as enjoy the more than 400 unique and classic cars that will be on display.
to raise funds for community outreach. The money they raise goes toward helping the local food banks, volunteering at nursing homes, and a mentorship program they hope to start in September.
Sounds and Taste of Soul
Saturday, June 18, 5-8pm Helen E. Arnold Community Learning Center 450 Vernon Odom Blvd, Akron, 44307 Tickets for Entry:
Fan Club, the Akron-based nonprofit’s goal is to maintain an international network of grandmothers who are LeBron James fans to
Chapman sees the importance of uplifting children starting when they are young. “You’ve got to feel good about yourself before you can
interact with other fans in any way they can-via the web, email, and face-to-face at games or watch parties--to support LeBron in all he
excel in school or anyplace else,” she says. The organization hopes to mentor parents as well, to help them learn how to uplift their children.
does. Even if he ever leaves us again. Even if he leaves basketball.
While membership to the fan club is exclusive
If you would like to be a vendor, or with
These grandmas are dedicated. And they don’t just fawn all over him like good grandmothers should, they also follow in
to grandmothers, everyone is encouraged to attend their events. The next fundraiser is their 4th annual Sounds and Taste of Soul event. All proceeds will go toward mentoring children at
other questions, please contact: President and Founder Alder Chapman 330-784-2544 Activity Committee Chairperson
LeBron’s philanthropic footsteps, holding events
the Helen E. Arnold CLC and the Urban League.
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
Adults $10, Children 13 and up $7 Food Tickets: $1 per ticket Food Cost: Meat, Chicken and Fish at vendor prices, side dishes 2 tickets, bread and drinks 1 ticket
Selaria Woodall 330-701-6619
culture & community
At the corner of East Market and Forge streets, you might notice an insignificant sign announcing The University of Akron. But
passageway, and served all of the needs of the parish until the church relocated to a new site in West Akron in the 1950’s.
what is more likely what to draw your eye is a stately and handsome gothic-style church building. This magnificent sandstone structure
In 1952, the University purchased the property with funds from the Firestone Foundation
was once was the Sunday School and Parish House of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Akron.
to establish what once was the Firestone Conservatory of Music at the University of
Constructed in 1885 by Lewis Miller, the founder of Chautauqua Institute, and Akron builder Jacob B. Snyder, it is one of the first,
Akron in the Parish House, and the University of Akron Ballet Center in the Sanctuary building. In 1976, the Sunday School and Parish House
and perhaps most well preserved, examples of what would come to be known as the “Akron Sunday School”
were added to the National Register of Historic Places. However, if President Scarborough had it his way, this piece of Akron’s architectural history would be demolished to make way for his “Grand Entrance” to the University.
design. A design that was frequently replicated in many churches across the nation in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
In 1909, with the expansion of Akron’s Episcopal congregation, a
The Original St. Paul’s Episcopal Church by Katie Jackson
larger limestone sanctuary was erected on the same triangular lot adjacent to Fir Street. The
As The Devil Strip first reported in November 2015, The University of Akron, under President Scarborough's direction, was seeking funds from the State of
Ohio to the tune of $32 million dollars over the (continued on page 22)
two buildings were connected by a wooden
Akron HERstory: Mabel By Ilenia Pezzaniti
Lena Cramer Kruse
In 1939, Akron’s first policewoman under Civil Service was named. Mabel Kruse was born in New Lyme, Ohio, in 1887. Originally thinking she wanted to be a nurse, Mabel worked at Cleveland’s Lakeside Hospital. Mabel married Arthur D. Kruse in 1908 and had four sons together. After her
of Ohio Women’s Republican Club. One year later, the Akron Republican Executive Committee asked her to be a policewoman, where she served for two years as a police officer, seldom carrying a gun. She was officially appointed a policewoman under Police Chief Frank Boss in 1939, after the Civil Service
Mabel died in 1973 at the age of 86. According to the Akron Women’s History blog, Mabel’s obituary stated she had been a member of the First Methodist Church, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Republican Club and an honorary member of the Community Welfare Association. In 2015, Mabel
husband’s health failed, she looked for employment elsewhere, landing a job as a relief matron at the city workhouse.
won a posthumous award during the Woman of the Year awards luncheon hosted by The Women’s History Project of the Akron Area.
Mabel ended up becoming the president of the
system came about. Mabel served for 16 years on the force, doing general police work and eventually being assigned to the vice unit. She was also given the responsibility of investigations concerning women and girls in 1941. Eleven years later in 1952,
Henry School PTA and in 1935 became the president
Mabel retired as a detective at 51.
Resource: Endres, K.L. (2013, September 6). Akron Women’s History. A resource of the Summit county Historical Society. Retrieved from https://blogs.uakron.edu/womenshistory/2013/09/06/mary-aholmes-d-1986/
HOME RUN DERBY TUESDAY JULY 12
ALL-STAR GAME WEDNESDAY JULY 13
GET YOUR TICKETS TODAY! VISIT AKRONRUBBERDUCKS.COM OR CALL (330) 253-5151 AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
culture & Community (continued from page 21)
SMALL BUSINESS CHRONICLES PILGRIM SQUARE BARBER SHOP by Rick Bohan
next two years to pay for capital improvements on campus. The proposed plans included raising four structures of the former Quaker Square complex as well as this
A few decades ago, women went to
might have to wait a bit sometimes but
“beauty salons” and men went to barber shops, small places with a “candy cane” pole out front, a row of time worn chairs against the wall and a stack of
that’s where the stack of men’s magazines and the great conversation comes in,” Emaman says with a grin.
Since then, there has been some confusion as to whether this site will be on the chopping
magazines in the corner. It seems there are fewer such local barbers in these days of franchise hair cutters that have space
Scott says he doesn’t worry about some of the franchises that are seeking to attract men with large screen TV’s broadcasting
in every shopping strip you see. Scott Emerman, proprietor of Pilgrim Square Barber Shop, recreates that familiar feel of days gone by in his shop on West Market
ESPN and attractive hair stylists.
at Pilgrim Square. The hair cutting business has been a growth industry even during the recent recession. On the other hand, the other 90,000 barbers in the nation provide a lot of competition for heads of
“It’s true that those shops do well but my clients are looking for a certain vibe, with the franchises, though,” reports Emerman. The men who come here aren’t really choosing between me and the franchise store. If anything, they come here because they are avoiding the franchise store.”
hair to trim. Not to mention the 750,000 “hair Scott is the only barber in his store. There are stylists”. Many of his competitors work for large other shops that will have several barbers, franchises that are able to spend lots of money especially during busy times. on marketing and advertising. “When customers come here, they know who “I don’t really think of myself as competing
is going to be cutting their hair. Yeah, they
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
a certain experience, and that’s not it. I know men who go to those places. I’ve been to them myself. But the men who come here were brought to a place like mine by their dads and they want that vibe. Part of it is nostalgia, I suppose, and part of it is wanting to patronize local businesses. But, in the end, if they didn’t feel that they got a great haircut at a good price, they wouldn’t keep coming back.”
block or not. The non-profit organization Progress Through Preservation (PTP) of Greater Akron contacted President Scarborough at the beginning of this year for some clarification. At that time, Scarborough indicated that the University has “not engaged in any action toward planning the demolition of these buildings”. In the meantime, this beautiful historical structure remains empty. The oak vestibules once filled with organ music are silenced. The overgrown landscape and peeling paint on the exterior of the stained glass windows show signs of neglect and abandonment. And the future of an architectural gem of Akron pivots on the decisions of a questionable administration.
Photos by Katie Jackson/The Devil Strip Photos by Katie Jackson
culture & community
When the world came to the main library by Patrick J. Worden For two days in May the world and its many cultures came to the Akron-Summit County Public Library’s main branch. The Exploring the
story, representing the myths and memories of dozens of nations and ethnicities.
Pictured Left: The 2016 Exploring the World Through Stories passport and program. Pictured Above (L to R): Exploring cultures at the Akron-Summit County Public Library; Practicing chopstick skills with Tootsie Rolls and gumdrops; Gwendolyn W. onstage with the Sho Jo Ji Japanese Dancers (All photos courtesy of Pat Worden)
World Through Stories event, sponsored by Global Ties Akron, featured dancers, musicians, artists, and storytellers from around the globe.
She was very pleased that representatives of almost all of the cultures she learned about live and work right here in
Later there was time to explore the all-day activity stations, which included a
Gwen’s visit was over, though. After a quick visit to the library’s children’s section (she took to heart the Festival’s exhortation to read more),
Filling the library atrium, and with half-hourly performances on the auditorium stage, the culture and diversity festival brought the power
multicultural meet-and-greet hosted by the International Institute of Akron. There
she borrowed a book on Chinese mythology, and repaired to her Goodyear Heights home to reflect more on all she’d learned.
Early in her visit, she waited
of story, spoken and portrayed, to area students patiently while a couple of
were also stations dedicated
and adults. Friday, May 13th was a lucky day indeed for more than 300 gradeschoolers from throughout the region, who were invited
taller folks, one of them Global Ties Akron executive director Michelle Wilson, discussed the
to exploring individual So how was it? cultures—Egypt, China, Persia, “It was entertaining, and really fun! I learned and many more. She saw a lot about Japanese dancing, and I picked up
for a special sneak preview of events. The main festival was on Saturday the 14th, with performers ranging from Japanese dancers to drummers to a ventriloquist, onstage between 10:30 am and 3:00 pm.
festival and the organizations behind it. Wilson said that the event was held in partnership with the Akron-Summit County Library to encourage both cultural literacy, and the more traditional book-based kind (the reasoning being that visitors to the festival can also enjoy the library’s facilities and check out a few books while they’re at it).
Our intrepid correspondent, Gwendolyn W., is an Akron Public Schools second grader. Her school unfortunately did not participate in the Friday field trip, so she instead joined the crowd Saturday morning that had gathered to explore the world in the library. She even bumped into a classmate or two.
Soon enough, Gwen was off to Japan— enjoying the traditional dances and music presented by the Sho Jo Ji Dancers. She was eventually invited onstage along with dozens of
her name written in both Arabic and Egyptian hieroglyphs, and practiced picking up gumballs with chopsticks. One more quick show before lunch— ventriloquist David Weyrick was onstage in the auditorium, with his talkative sidekick Critter (it wasn’t clear from Gwen’s seat exactly what kind of critter Critter was). David and Critter regaled the audience with stories of the Olympics, and of the diversity of nations. They also sang, or rather Critter sang while David hummed and beatboxed. It was a feat that left Gwendolyn W.
two Tootsie Rolls with chopsticks.” Any lessons to be learned? “Yes. They were teaching us about other cultures, and they told us that a lot of people from those cultures live in Akron, and not some place far away.” What was the best part for you? “Meeting people who could tell me about their cultures—especially when it was a culture I didn’t really know about before.” Do you think other kids your age would like it as much as you did?
other audience members to learn the steps of several ancient Japanese folk dances, including
both bewildered and impressed.
What she and all the others had come to see was an omnihued swirl of arts and crafts, of artifacts and cultural treasures, of music and
the Coal Miner’s Dance, known to date from as early as 900 A.D.
The Exploring the World Through Stories festival “Definitely!” // Pat Worden drives Miss Gwennie. was to continue on for several more hours.
For family fun, come spot the newest members of our family. Hurry and visit the triplets at your Akron Zoo before they’re grown. Check akronzoo.org for cubs’ exhibit hours.
YOU’VE NEVER BEEN THIS CLOSE! akronzoo.org
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
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THE Devil Strip |
culture & community
BETTER NOW THAN NEVER A view from campus at the end of the Scarborough era by Chris Drabick
n campus, it seems like any other summer morning. Grass being mowed. Very few souls moving. It almost seems like the place is closed. But after turning the corner on the third floor of the Student Union, it’s obvious something very different is afoot. Well-dressed people with noses in smartphones. One, two, three, four high-priced cameras of the sort carried by news reporters, like those gathered near the entrance
I’m pretty sure I’m the only one here wearing a “Fire the Scar” shirt. I’m totally certain I’m the only one who spent hours before the October meeting of the trustees putting together 50
come to Akron and immediately try and privatize as much of the operation as possible as quickly as possible without connections. All the sorts of connections that I find an affront to
Left Behind because of his connections with George W. Bush.
paper bag puppets around a dining room table with my wife (thanks for that idea, Alison). As the reporters laugh and joke about the sorry state of this place, the name change, the secrecy, I recognize this is just another story to all of these people.
public life and public education.
partners” like ITT Tech and TrustNavigator received all the attention, the administration’s attempt to privatize an online nursing masters degree program through Academic Partnerships very quietly never materialized and it appears it never will. - Chris Horne]
It’s personal because I lost my job here at the University in a second, quiet round of faculty cuts.
[Note: Though the failed deals with “outsource
I understood all was not as it appeared with the
of the Board of Trustees room. I take a seat next to a dude with an Associated Press satchel.
This is personal for me.
incoming Scarborough administration because of that house. The President’s residence. The
The more I poked around, the fucking scarier it got. I started to sense a bigger picture, and
Something is going down.
It’s personal because I’ve been continuously insulted by the hubris of an administration who’ve hired a group of yes-women-and-men for far too much money at the expense of people who could have done a more effective job, lying and altering CVs and bullying search committees along the way.
Palace of Burning Tree Drive. When the news hit that they were remodeling that house, and that the bill would be $350,000, I took some
it did not portend good things for me, or the University, or this community.
notice. That seemed excessive for a school crying poverty, a school bringing in a business-
In the meantime, I’d made friends with the Devil Strip’s publisher, Mr. Chris Horne, shortly
minded president to clear up a (seeming) financial mess (seemingly) caused by the aggressive over-building of the Proenza era. But $350,000? Goodness. How do you spend that
after he relocated to Akron from somewhere warmer with giant mosquitoes. I explained why I thought Dr. Scarborough was potentially as disinterested in actually advancing the cause
much on a remodel?
of education as were the privatizers behind No Child Left Behind. I shared what I’d found
Then several weeks later, new details emerged. The bill had ballooned to nearly $600,000, then $750,000 and finally $950,000. That’s when my curiosity was piqued. That made me dig.
to support why I thought Scarborough would act swiftly and without engaging the faculty, staff or students — but with the blessing and foreknowledge of the Board — to sell off as
I’ve been waiting for that something to go down for nearly a year now.
Because it’s personal, I don’t trust Scott Scarborough’s background as a politician. I don't think you can be the head of a Major Political Party for your county in Texas without connections. I don’t think you can run for the state government without connections. I don’t think, without connections, you can sell an entire college to a private enterprise, as Scarborough did at DePaul University with Barat College. I don’t believe you Pictured left: A member of Black Students United, who came to protest conditions on campus for underrepresented minorities, stands by the statue of John Buchtel, founder of Buchtel College, which became the University of Akron. (Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn/The Devil Strip)
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
much of UA as he could before anyone noticed. There had been whispers about why Scarborough was suspended from DePaul,
Chris Horne and I noticed.
where he was the Executive VP of Finance, before he resigned without explanation shortly
I won’t get into the fact that your local media
after. Most focused on rumors of an extramarital affair being the cause of his dismissal but I thought there might be something
was completely asleep at the wheel while Scarborough backed up metaphorical moving trucks and eliminated 200+ full-time positions
associated with his transfer of Barat College to Academic Partnerships, a company owned by Randy Best, who made a fortune on No Child
last June and dismissed the entire baseball program in the hopes of creating a “Grand Entrance” off of Exchange. It was frustrating
culture & community Pictured left: Members of the Akron chapter of the Ohio Student Association camp out on a Friday afternoon in May, waiting for President Scarborough to return to his office. They moved after security threatened to have them arrested. (Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn/The Devil Strip)
R that no one seemed to be bothered that a house remodeling went $600,000 over budget, that Scarborough’s friends were being brought in at higher salaries than their predecessors, that shared governance was a useless concept to the new president. [Note: NEOMG’s Karen Farkas did an excellent job breaking the story about the cost of renovations at the President’s residence. - Chris H.] It was a frustrating time to be a member of the University community. Faculty was disheartened that no one was listening to anything they had to say. Entire departments were in disarray after the June firings, assistants moving all around, IT wiped out, student success farmed out to TrustNavigator. It felt surreal. The Press was cut. The Press was resurrected. No one was sure what the hell was going on at EJ. The connective tissue of UA, the very community was being carelessly, needlessly, ceaselessly severed. I felt dazed. I walked around stunned and angry once the semester began. It felt like no one knew how to stop it, even though everyone I knew wanted it to stop.
>> Problem Wack-a-Mole If you care about the University of Akron and how it affects the city around it, you know the problems on campus won’t go away just because Dr. Scott Scarborough has been removed. There are deep-seeded issues still to address so while we turned to our friends, readers and community leaders for their thoughts on where the trustees and the UA community should focus
students? Yawn. Did that last year. UA trying to partner with
their attention and energy.
a crooked for-profit like ITT (all handled with the usual
“We need to get people to realize that faculty are not an enemy.” — Sarah S-B
voices don't matter. I know at the art school we have a lot of resentment towards the administration. Start speaking to your students
“Stop trying to privatize everything and realize that the people with the greatest stake in the university are the tenured faculty. Make
I felt good as I walked into that boardroom the morning the Scarborough era ended, smiling as widely as I had in months. It’s too late for me.
shared governance between faculty and administrators a reality.” — Mary V.N.
I’ve joined the hundreds Scarborough and his yes-women-and-men put out of work. But I’m not going anywhere.
“We need to resurrect all of the support
Fewer vice presidents and clearly defined titles and job descriptions for those we have. I understand a president may deserve a sixfigure salary, but with that kind of salary he
services for students, including the diversity supports, and open up more positions within that for jobs for others (mainly because it's
does not need a 1.5K monthly car allowance — the rest of us manage to pay for our cars out of our 20K a year salaries!” — Jana R.
It was a great morning. I felt a sense of accomplishment, as though the t-shirt and the puppets and the shouting (“I have no
all I've ever wanted to do and would love to
Scarborough cloak-and-dagger)? Ho-fucking-hum. A 50-2 No Confidence vote from Faculty Senate? Whatevs.
confidence in you!”) finally made some sort of difference. The truth is, it’s probably the falling enrollment that did, and that no one heard any of us at all. This is indicative of the hard work we face. The same Board of Trustees is in place. Most of the administration remains. The University inches closer to ruin. Will they listen this time? Will we make the requisite noise? An important obstacle to the success of The University of Akron has been removed (don’t worry, as it’s still going to cost a lot of money). I want to celebrate, believe me. I will celebrate. But then I will get back to work, making noise. Please join me.
“As a student, I hated faculty turnover, taking classes by new adjuncts was difficult and sloppy. Well-established professors had classes
“Support graduate students with GA positions that have been stripped away costing us many wonderful students who choose schools who
that felt strong, deep, and full of knowledge. I'm not bashing adjuncts, it's just difficult to constantly teach different classes for the first
show they value their work.”
time over and over again.”
— Zen V.
“Re-instate the theatre program including the masters track. Along with that, get rid of all the ‘interim’ deans and assistant deans and get people in leadership positions that actually teach the subjects they are supposed to be promoting and guiding.” — Wendy D. “Bring back baseball!”
controversy began to feel like old hat. Like $4.1 million in fees essentially stolen from
— Mike S.
— Love G.
“Realize the university was meant for everyone in the community! It is important to Akron to allow a university to be open to its community!” — L.T.M.S. “Support Graduate Students with funding and assistance-ships. Value PhD programs. Re-create the student success programs.” — Melody S-R
“Transparency. Involve the community and the alumni. It's their university too. I realize
“Real shared governance and a board that
that there is potential for a town hall kind of meeting to degrade into chaos (see ‘Parks and
isn't completely freaked out by that concept.” — Pam S.
Rec’ time capsule episode), but this dialogue needs to happen and all dirty laundry NEEDS to be aired, as unpleasant as that may be.
“Get rid of the horrible company that provides the nasty, gross food that the food service
Community involvement has been disastrously and maddeningly snubbed in recent years, and
serves and rehire all the union workers back.” — Amy S-Mc.
the only way to reconnect with the community (and potential donors!) is some honesty...” — Max F.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
“I want to see the bloat at the top eliminated.
serve the students that make up the University I love)” — Devon A.
We protested every BoT meeting. I made new friends. Graduates Over Greed formed, and made those wonderful videos, inspiring my wife and I to make those puppets (“Money!!!”). Let’s keep making some fucking noise. The Olive Jar got its own Facebook page, and over 1,500 followers. Every new bad decision or Pictured below: Protesters and reporters crowd
into the boardroom for a meeting of the trustees in February 2016 following the faculty senate's no confidence vote. (Photo courtesy of Ilenia Pezzaniti/ The Devil Strip)
— Sabrina O.
“I would like to see a change in the overall
“We need to ensure that the same people aren't repeating the mistakes that got UA into this mess in the first place, including possibly hiring another president like Scarborough.
organization of leadership. When decisions are
Trustees should be appointed that are truly
made, students and faculty need to be part of the process.” — Melissa P. “More attention to all programs offered.
vested in UA and Akron's well-being and future, but I also think it is time to rethink the selection process itself since it has become little more than one of many prizes within
We have so much on the campus that is
the partisan spoils system, and because state
overlooked because we'd rather proclaim the polysciences or football team. That's far from all we have to offer. ...Bring back the student aid programs. The coaches, all that
governors in general don't seem to have the best grasp of local needs outside of the state capital, seeing trustee seats instead as a means of rewarding their top campaign
nonsense, serves no purpose, but the career center did. Our tutors are causing students to fail tests and turn in incorrectly put together
donors, who themselves don't automatically grasp and understand a university's needs and its mission. Trustees should be elected
papers. Why offer services if they actually don't benefit people? ...there's a lot I'd like to see, and I know a lot of it probably can't be done for some reason. But the communication
by a weighted system that includes current undergrad, grad and professional students, alumni, faculty, staff, and the primary communities in the surrounding metropolitan
thing is key: the faculty feels snubbed and the students are irritated because they feel their
area that the university serves.”
— John S.
culture & Community
THE TRUE MEANING OF
ANONYMITY Alcoholics Anonymous Celebrates 81 Years of Fellowship by Christina Dearing
June’s arrival brings a new vibration into our city. Coming along for the ride once again is Founder’s Day, and the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) celebrating its 81st year.
struggling to stay sober. He called Henrietta Seiberling from the Mayflower Hotel, and she in turn connected him with Dr. Bob S. at her then Stan Hywet Gatehouse home. You can find
Jim showed me the many resources AA has on the subject of anonymity and more. There is the book, Alcoholics Anonymous, or the Big Book for short, which is a textbook published
This three day weekend brings thousands of people together from around the world as they commemorate a message of hope to others.
more information on AA’s history by Googling “A Narrative Timeline of AA History,” by Arthur S. Arlington, TX.
in 1939 containing the twelve suggested steps for recovery, many personal stories, and appendices. Don’t you just love a good textbook where something worthwhile can be studied? I know I do. Jim B. then referenced the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, which covers
After reading this, my sense of curiosity grew, so I contacted the Akron AA Archives where I spoke to and met with the current archivist of six years, Jim B. As Jim and I sat talking
of Dr. Bob S. and Bill W. by way of Henrietta for well over an hour about anonymity in Seiberling in June of 1935. According to history, AA and what it means historically for the Bill W., a stockbroker from New York, was fellowship, he spoke straight from his heart.
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
So, even with all of technology--the internet and websites--anonymity can still be practiced, and if you are uncertain, reference the General Service Office for AA. They have a great deal of information and insight to offer you. Anonymity is about the releasing of pride
on “Understanding Anonymity,” which is a valuable question and answer forum.
and ego, and by getting rid of the alcoholic’s individual need to be noticed, he or she has a greater ability to help another alcoholic who
In his last message to AA, Bill
is in need and suffering. Jim B says it better, “No one is less or more important than any
W. talks about the spiritual and practical impact of anonymity on AA as a whole. He said, “On the spiritual level, anonymity
other member in the fellowship, or in our world for that matter. The individual who is seeking sobriety is not only important to AA, but to all of humanity, God wants them and all of us to
demands the greatest discipline of which we are capable; on
be as happy as possible.”
and security from those of us who would use AA for sick and selfish gain.” Jim B. mentioned
alcoholism goes back three centuries starting with Anthony Benezet’s “Temperance” essay from 1774, up to the synchronistic meeting
us that we are to place principles before personalities; that we are actually to practice a genuine humility.”
each step and tradition in essay form, and the recent pamphlet
the practical level anonymity has brought protection for the newcomer, respect and support of the world outside,
From a historical view, the treatment for
believe that the principle of anonymity has an immense spiritual significance. It reminds
Founder’s Day June 10-12 The University of Akron For more information you can visit
this aspect of an alcoholic’s personality; “It is pride and jealousy that made
or call 330-253-8181
the devil fall from God’s grace,” he said. Traditions eleven and twelve from Twelve Steps
// If Christina could stop dancing long enough
and Twelve Traditions talk about anonymity, but tradition twelve seems to pull it all together: “And finally, we of Alcoholics Anonymous
she might be able to get more important things accomplished.
culture & community
: Where to Swim 2016
by Katie Jackson
Unless you’re fortunate enough to have a neighbor, friend, or relative with access to a swimming pool, those stagnant summer days
Turkeyfoot Lake. Swimmers may enjoy the surf and sand at their own risk during the day.
can get pretty brutal. I mean, I guess there’s always the Slip’N Slide, but do you really want that trip to the ER when you sprain your ankle?
THE CITY OF AKRON The City of Akron maintains two outdoor
Didn’t think so. It’s also probably best to avoid securing your place as the neighborhood oddball by running through the lawn sprinkler. Instead, play it safe and take a tip from us by
municipal swimming pools which are free of charge. They are located at:
visiting one (or more) of these local swimming holes this summer:
Reservoir Park ........ 1735 Hillside Terrace, Akron Hours: 1 - 7pm Mon/Wed/Fri
Perkins Woods ............ 899 Diagonal Rd., Akron Hours: 1 - 7pm Tue/Thurs/Sat
SUMMIT METRO PARKS Another jewel of Summit County, Summit Metro Parks, offers two supervised lake
dip in the water. Complete with a concession stand, picnic tables, basketball and volleyball courts, and an 80-foot by 100-foot heated pool (2-foot deep at the shallow end and 5-foot deep at the deep end), the Hinckley Ledge Pool is the perfect place to spend any summer day. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 children ages 6-11, and 5 and under are free. Open daily from 11 am - 7 pm.
1980 W. Streetsboro Rd., Peninsula Hours: 12:30 - 7:30pm Thurs - Sun For a throwback to your summer camp experience, check out The Quarry in Peninsula. The former rock quarry-turned swimming hole is hidden amongst the woods with only a small tie-dye sign boasting “a very chill place” to let you know it’s there. The natural surroundings are picnic-friendly and open weather-permitting from 12:30 - 7:30 pm. Daily rates are $7 ($5 after 5:30pm), and season passes are available for $100 per individual or $225 per family.
PORTAGE LAKES STATE PARK 5031 Manchester Rd., Akron In addition to boating and fishing, Portage Lakes State Park has two public swimming beaches located at Lake Nesmith and
from 11am - 8pm. Daily rates start at $7 for residents of Cuyahoga Falls ($15 for nonresidents) and season passes are also available. Pictured above: Water Works. Photo courtesy of City of Cuyahoga Falls
SHAW JCC 750 White Pond Dr., Akron The Shaw JCC is a popular members-only swimming spot among Akronites, offering water exercise classes and private lessons in addition to open swim hours. Several
membership levels are available and more swimming locations with concession and vending machines, picnic areas, bathhouses and information can be found at their website, www.shawjcc.org. playground areas. $4 daily admission, or very
concession stand. Waterworks is open daily
affordable season pass prices of $30 per adult or $15 per child. Canoe and paddleboat rentals are also available. The parks are open weekdays from 11am - 7pm and weekend/holiday hours are 10am - 8pm. Munroe Falls ....... 521 S. River Rd., Munroe Falls Silver Creek.......... 5000 Hametown Rd., Norton
The City of Cuyahoga Falls offers six wading pools for children ages 9 and under. All pools are free of charge, have a maximum depth of two feet, and are supervised by certified WATER WORKS FAMILY AQUATIC CENTER 2025 Munroe Falls Ave., Cuyahoga Falls The ultimate fun-in-the-sun experience can be found at Water Works Family Aquatic Center
lifeguard from 11am until 6pm through August 16, 2016. Water toys are welcome and all parks offer playground and picnic facilities as well.
HINCKLEY LEDGE POOL 1151 Ledge Rd., Hinckley
in Cuyahoga Falls. Whether you’re interested in the thrill of water slides, lap swimming, splashing with friends, taking it slow in the lazy river, or just lounging in a poolside cabana, Water Works has it all! Lounge chairs surround
Indian Mountain Park ...... 1552 E. Bailey Rd. Linden Park .......................241 Roanoke Ave. Lions Park ...................... 641 Silver Lake Ave.
Going a bit outside city limits, the Hinckley
the pool area and there is also plenty of green
Oak Park ..................................2250 12th St. Quirk Cultural Center......... 1201 Grant Ave.
Ledge Pool is a perfect location for a refreshing
space to enjoy a picnic lunch or treats from the
Valley Vista Park .................. 2790 Valley Rd.
dump the pump THURSDAY, JUNE 16
DUMP THE PUMP DAY IS JUNE 16! ON DUMP THE PUMP DAY, YOU CAN RIDE METRO’S LINE-SERVICE FREE* AND PARTY AT THE TRANSIT CENTER (631 S. BROADWAY) FROM 11 A.M. TO 2 P.M. THERE WILL BE A LIVE DJ, GIVEAWAYS (WHILE SUPPLIES LAST), AND MORE! *Some restrictions apply.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
culture & community
Farm to Market
Countryside Farmers Market at Howe Meadow......................... 4040 Riverview Rd., Peninsula Season: Open Saturdays from 9am - 12pm and runs through October 29 Countryside Farmers Market at Highland Square..................... Conger Ave. and W. Market St.
Guide to Local Farmers Markets
Season: Open Thursdays from 4 - 7pm through September 29
by Katie Jackson
Szalay’s Farm & Market................................................................. 4563 Riverview Rd., Peninsula Season: Open daily from 9am - 7pm through October 31
Shopping at a farmers market is something
and cars on W. Market St. was woven into
other than just buying groceries. It is more than a simple exchange of goods. There is a sense of community between vendors and patrons. Beyond the satisfaction of knowing where their
the rhythm of drum beats, children laughing, and neighbors catching up as they filled their market bags with fresh greens, asparagus and local honey.
food comes from, the people get to know each other. It becomes a living palate for both food and friendship.
No matter which market you attend, the sense of community exists.
On a recent cold and dreary Saturday afternoon at Howe Meadow, vendors and patrons alike exchanged smiles and welcoming pleasantries
The Akron area is fortunate to have both the ecological conditions and public that supports sustainable local farming. Likewise, we are
amid the scenic surroundings of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Despite the chill, there was magic in the air. Excitement about the season and what’s to come. Anticipation for what this year’s crop yield will bring. Sharing in the joy of honest work and fresh product, as well as
fortunate to have a multitude of locations to shop for locally-grown fresh produce.
the nourishment that can only come from food prepared with love.
new vegetable or two.
We’ve curated a list of local markets for you to attend this summer. Get to know your local growers, your neighbors, and perhaps even a
Munroe Falls Farmers Market............................................ Brust Park on Route 91, Munroe Falls Season: Open Tuesdays from 3 - 6 pm through September 27 Farmers Market in the Falls.....................Quirk Cultural Center 1201 Grant Ave., Cuyahoga Falls Season: Open Fridays from 3 - 6pm through September 20 Akron Farm & Flea Market..................................Urban Eats and Musica 51 E. Market St., Akron Season: Open 10am - 2pm on the second Sunday of the month from June 12 - September 11 Copley Creekside Farmers Market.................................1265 S. Cleveland Massillon Rd., Copley Season: Open Thursdays from 3 - 7 pm through early October Anna Dean Farmers Market at the O.C. Barber Piggery............. 248 Robinson Ave., Barberton Season: Open Tuesdays from 2 - 6pm through September Stow Community Farmers Market..........Stow Comm. United Church of Christ, 1567 Pilgrim Dr.
Pictured Above: Countryside Markets at Howe Meadow & Highland Square by Katie Jackson; In contrast, the opening day of the Highland Square Farmers Market was a picturesque warm Haymaker Market Mural captured from kent360.com
sunny day in the city. The sound of busses
Hudson Farmers Market.......................................Village Green corner of Rts. 91 & 303, Hudson Season: Open Saturdays 9am - 12:30pm through October 8
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
Season: Open Saturdays from 9am - 12pm through early October Haymaker Market...................................................................... Franklin Ave. & Summit St., Kent Season: Open Saturdays from 9am - 1pm through October 29
Food & Drink AKRON FOOD SCENE
31 BIG STAR VS. AKRON PIZZA TASK FORCE 33 MR. ZUBS BUILDS HIS DREAM HOUSE 35 STORYTIME WITH THE BAR CRAWLER
#ACTLIKEYOUKNOW “About two more weeks,” AJ kept saying, whenever we’d ask about when Akron Coffee Roasters would open up their storefront coffee shop at 30 N. High St. in downtown Akron ( aka - right next to The Nightlight) — but then magically, one day, they were open. Just remember, when you go and you start telling all your friends about how cool it is, we’ve been fans of ACR since the jump.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
MAY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #5 /
THE Devil Strip |
food & drink
AKRON PIZZA TASK FORCE Big Star Pizza
by Stephanie Baker, Kevin Wirth and Justin Lyons (@akronpizzatf)
Hello Akron! This month we ventured out to Copley to try Big Star Pizza, located at 1372 S. Cleveland-Massillon Road. We had never heard of Big Star before Mr. Devil Strip recommended it, but it has a following; their menu is available online, put up by an enthusiastic pizza lover who wants to make sure they stay in business so he won’t ever be without his favorite pizza. Pictured above: Big Star Sicilian style. Pictured right: Big Star Chicago style
Due to a minimalist website, bigstarcopley. com, we weren’t sure what to expect and ordered our pizza to-go, but there is a small seating area for dining in.
NUEVO MODERN MEXICAN & TEQUILA BAR
RESERVATIONS RECOMMENDED FOR SEATING BUT ADVENTURESOME TASTE BUDS REQUIRED FOR DINING
“NOT your average, neighborhood Mexican restaurant--this place is amazing!!” I wouldn't even consider this a Mexican restaurant. It's more like Latin American inﬂuenced creativity and uniqueness. Let's start by saying, you will not get a bowl of tortilla chips and salsa as soon as you sit down. What you will experience is some very delicious food that is drawn from the cultures of Mexico, Cuba, Peru, and other points in Central and South America. Previous reviews had drawn me here and I was not disappointed at all. Where else can you get calamari combined with chili dusted popcorn and citrus chimichurri aioli? I would never have thought of creating such an appetizer---it was simply perfection. Take a look at their website to peruse their menu-- a lot of interesting choices. I can conﬁdently recommend the chipotle nopales pork tacos. The Michelada shrimp tacos and the Almejas y mejillones are also worthy of consideration. Of course, great margaritas and other drink selections. Hip, tasteful decor along with great waitstaﬀ. Worth the drive into downtown Akron. A leader in the Akron restaurant scene.
54 East Mill St. Akron 44308 (330) 762-8000 nuevomodmex.com Hours: M-Th 11-10, F 11-11, Sat 3-11
Big Star has three pizza styles to choose from, and as we are the best pizza task force in the world, we tried them all for you. We ordered
The Sicilian pizza is has a thick crust but is cut into squares. The crust is airy and has a nice crisp golden cook on the bottom. All three pizzas are adequate, with the New
cheese pizzas in New York style (thin crust);
York style standing out as the best. This pizza
Chicago style (deep dish); and Sicilian style (thick crust).
had a combination of cheeses that gave it a nice flavor and a crust that was chewy but not too soft.
The Chicago style pizza doesn’t have the deep crust which this pizza style is famous for with cheese on the bottom and sauce on the top. Their Chicago pizza has a thick crust and with
Though their name is Big Star Pizza, the star on their sign could be bigger. They might want to rename themselves as Average Star Pizza.
the toppings in the usual order, which is similar to the Sicilian style,
// Akron Pizza Task Force - we ride bikes to eat pizza.
We want to hear from you! Tweet us @akronpizzatf Where should the Akron Pizza Task Force go next?
Pictured left: Big Star New York style (All photos courtesy of Kevin Wirth)
Photos provided by Paul
food & Drink
Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie in the Sky words by Lia Pietrolungo; photos by Paul Mangus
Spring is officially upon us in all of her glory, and has brought with her the long-awaited
of sweet and tart. The perennial rhubarb is tangy on its own, but adds a delicious bite
consumption of all things strawberry-rhubarb – my weakness, my sustenance, my absolute favorite.
when combined with sweet strawberries. A buttery crust balances out the acidy of the pie filling, while tapioca gives the filling body and
With finals week behind me (good riddance!), I felt a sense of emotional exhaustion that
sturdiness. A scoop of vanilla ice cream really seals the deal with this pie.
needed to be kicked in the rump immediately. Baking is the number one thing that helps me to reset, relax, and revive my frazzled nerves – even if it’s the cause of said frazzled nerves.
For the crust: 2 cups all-purpose flour
After a long semester, I found my happiness in the creases of my rhubarb and strawberry stained hands… and in a big ‘ole slice of pie.
1 cup 1 tbs 1 tsp Unfortunately, I missed out on the farmer’s market this week, so I purchased my ingredients 1 stick ½ cup from The Mustard Seed. I frequent the Seed, so I felt good supporting a local, family-owned business. I settled on a baker-friendly, flaky crust for the pie that has just the right amount of crumble to it. The cake flour helps to create a flakier, more tender crust, while using both butter and vegetable shortening ensures a flavorful crust that holds up beautifully in fruit pies
cake flour granulated or coconut sugar kosher salt cold, unsalted butter, cut into cubes
plus 2 tablespoons cold vegetable shortening ¼ to ½ cup ice water - Preheat your oven to 400°F. - In a large bowl, whisk together both flours
additional water a few tablespoons at a time until it comes together in doughy-yet-crumbly chunks. It is ready if it holds together when you squeeze it in your hands. - Turn the dough out onto parchment paper, waxed paper or a lightly floured surface. Separate the dough and form it into disks. Wrap each disk in plastic and chill in the refrigerator for an hour or overnight. Rolling out the dough: - Remove the dough from the fridge and allow to warm until it’s soft enough to roll
and the salt. but still cold. - Incorporate the shortening using a pastry - Turn out onto parchment, waxed paper, or cutter or your fingers. You’ll want the mixture a lightly floured surface. Roll out to desired to resemble small peas. Place in refrigerator if thickness and diameter for your pie pan. the shortening is too soft. The bottom crust should be a bit larger in - Using the pastry cutter, incorporate the butter. You’ll want larger bits of butter along
diameter than the top crust. - Fold the rolled dough in half, then in half
and use a pastry blender or my fingers to cut in the solid fats. It’s absolutely up to you how you’d like to go about this.
with the smaller ones. This ensures a flaky finished product since more steam will be trapped in the pockets that the butter creates as it melts while baking. - Add a few tablespoons of the ice water
again. Transfer the triangle to the pan and unfold. Fit to the pan. - Refrigerate for twenty minutes until you are ready add the filling. This ensures that the fat remains cold for a flaky crust.
Strawberry-rhubarb pie is the perfect marriage
and toss to dampen the flour mixture. Add
There are a few different ways to make a pastry crust: by hand, in a food processor, or in an electric mixer. I typically make mine by hand
Name: Jeanne Tassiello Favorite place to eat: Arnies PH Go-to dish: Chicken and Waffles
VI L S T
Name: Chrissy Macso Favorite place to eat: Highland Square Mustard Seed Cafe
the dish D I C AT O
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
Name: Deron Boyd Favorite place to eat: The Lockview Go-to dish: Panko Crusted Chicken Sandwich Name: Allyson Boyd
arnie’s public house
Elegantly Casual Dining featuring Modern Twists on Your Favorite Comfort Foods and Classic Cocktails 1682 W. Market St at Westgate Plaza in Akron 330-867-0154 Open 7 days a week 11:00am-2:30am
F OUR O E N TRY O TE PLAZA A WESTG RANTS! U RESTA
(continued on page 36)
Go-to dish: Coconut bacon BLT
Name: Heather Braun Favorite place to eat:Urban Eats Go-to dish: Veggie panini, homemade soup of the day, and a dirty chai. Love their
Favorite place to eat: The Lockview Go-to dish: Lockview Salad w/ Grilled Chicken
and White French PLUS Macaroni & Cheese Bites as an app! Name: Noor Hindi
Name: Joanna Wilson Favorite place to eat: Flury's Cafe in Cuyahoga Falls
Favorite place to eat: The Lockview Go-to dish: Number 13! Harvarti Dill Cheese
Go-to dish: The tuna melt or veggie omelet
Topped with Artichoke Hearts Sauteed in a Garlic and Lemon Infused Oil on Rustic Italian Bread
(Picture right, courtesy of Joanna Wilson)
Akron’s Home of the All Day Breakfast featuring a Bloody Mary Menu, Mimosas and much more... 1688 W. Market St at Westgate Plaza in Akron 330-867-1114 Open 7 days a week 6:30am-3:00pm Sundays 8:00am-3:00pm
food & drink
Of Feta and Kalmata: Vasili’s Greek Cuisine
words and photos by Holly Brown
There I was, sitting at my table, attempting to hide the anticipation that I felt in the wake of what was about to arrive. They weren’t there,
signals something not to be missed, I looked closer and realized it was a real life cheese experience for the bucket list: Kasseri cheese
and then they were: two servers appeared at my table, one holding a lighter, the other holding a cast iron skillet cradling the very thing
flamed at your table.
to be lit on fire: a block of cheese.
what I said to everyone. Don’t fret, they all agreed (I typically surround myself with people who share my affinity for adventures of the cheese sort). When that Saganaki arrived with
“Are you all ready?!”
I absolutely had to have it. Which is exactly
At least I think I responded, “Oh yeah!” with a whole lot of enthusiasm, but in all honesty I
perfectly sized slices of pita (just enough to get a good chunk of cheese but not so much that
could have just mumbled and drooled.
the cheese was obstructed) I was completely stunned and delighted by the lemony flavor that accompanied the richness of the kasseri. The fluffy pita soaked in the lemony runoff of the oil and when all three of those elements came together, I could easily see where the “Opa” came from.
“Opa!” Suddenly flames, flying up into the air, the delicious smell of melting cheese amid the crackling of the flames next to our table. Just as the fire began, it was gone and the skillet containing the deliciously charred cheese block was placed before us all. This is Vasili’s, where you can literally have cheese lit on fire at your table.
up to my high expectations. I decided to order the sample platter, the Mezedakia Platter. The beauty of writing this very column is having an excuse to try as many things as possible. With the Mezesakia holding: 1 Tiropita, 1 Spanakopita, 1 Dolmades, a side Greek Salad, gyro meat complete with more pita and tzatziki sauce, I got to try everything. The Tiropita and Spanakopita were so light and flaky with just that right amount of barely there crush that the best pastries have. I absolutely love Spanakopita and the combination of feta and spinach in this particular Spanakopita was one of the best I’ve ever had. Considering the Tiropita is basically a cheese puff, it’s safe to say that I also enjoyed that immensely (you can truly never have enough cheese).
Of course, you cannot get Greek food without also getting baklava (pictured above), the most coveted of desserts. That flaky pastry shell, sweet syrupy filling and earthy nuts are impossible to resist and as you can guess from everything else I’ve described, at Vasili’s it was to die for.
Believe it or not, I had never had grape leaves stuffed with ground beef as well as rice. It was a delicious surprise to cut into those tender, well oiled leaves and get a bite of both. Speaking of meat, I really do believe the highlight of the Mezedakia platter (pictured left) was the gyro meat. It was juicy and spiced like nothing I’ve ever had and sliced into those token thin pieces. I couldn’t stop eating it, even
*** Vasili’s is small and unassuming but as soon as you walk inside, the aroma of feta and olives is hard to ignore. I think it was then that I knew
when I was far beyond full. With the garlic of the tzatziki sauce and more poof pita, it was
I was in for some of the most delicious and authentic Greek food I had ever had. I sat down Truth be told, I wasn’t sure if I could top the Saganaki with my entree. Flaming cheese is not something to be taken lightly. But as I’m
just yet another perfect combination that Vasili’s Vasili’s Greek Cuisine was able to hone. Special shoutout to the Gyro 1702 Merriman Rd, Akron Supreme (which I definitely snuck a bite of) Mon-Sat: 11am - 9pm which brought all of these elements together
it. Considering I know that “Opa” generally
sure you can guess, the entree certainly lived
into a monster of a sandwich.
behind the bar
at a booth with my foodie cohorts, picked up the menu, and saw that there was something called Saganaki, “Opa” in quotations next to
Name: Kait Darby Bar: Baxter's Bar Hometown: Cuyahoga Falls What was your first night like? It was really fun because Lock 3 was booming, and we had a lot of people coming in and out. Best tip you ever received? $200 on a $28 tab. Good or bad, what is the one thing you wouldn't have known if you weren't a bartender? I wouldn’t have known the difference between bourbon and whiskey, and I wouldn’t know how much fun people can be when they’re drinking, as well as how much not fun they can be when they’ve had too much. Where do you go when you are not at work? Usually home because I have kids, but if I go out it’s probably to the Cashmere Cricket because it’s close to home, I know a lot of people that work there, and they have really good drinks. Do you have a signature drink? I like to make the Peach Old Fashioned.
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
Photo by M. Sophie Hamad/The Devil Strip
Food & Drink
LADY BEER DRINKER Mr. Zub’s builds his dream house words by Emily Anderson; photos by M. Sophie Hamad
Highland Square is one of the most beloved
for rent. There’s a giant cement patio out front
neighborhoods in Akron. I’ve always thought the best part of the area is that glorious row of dive bars on Market Street. They’re dark, loud, unpredictable, affordable, and always a good time. The Matinee in particular has
and 60 new parking spaces in the back.
always been my favorite. It has great beer, great music, great staff and great patrons. Who cares if it stays cold in the winter and hot in the summer? The Matinee has always treated me with kindness, understanding and delicious sandwiches
be rented to a third business. Moving forward with this plan, Mario and everyone who loves The Matinee began feeling uneasy about moving to a new location. Mario has had the Matinee for ten years, the last two of which have been the best
from the attached Mr. Zub’s Deli.
The original plan was for one of the bottom spaces to be Ray’s, one to be a combination of The Matinee, Capri Pizza and Zub’s, and one to
When a mysterious building appeared across the street from
ever. Taking this all into consideration, and being forced to either sign a new three-year lease for The Matinee or temporarily close it until
my favorite watering
the new building was
hole and people were saying that it was going to be the new location for The Matinee
finished, Mario decided to leave The Matinee where it is.
and the other bars, I decided get some
“The more I thought about it, it wouldn’t
answers from someone who would know what was going on — Mario Nemr, owner of The
be the same,” he says, having signed a new lease to stay put.
Matinee, Mr. Zub’s Deli, Capri Pizza and Thursday’s Lounge.
While he’s leaving The
Mario and his cousin Ray, who owns Ray’s Pub, decided to go in together on buying the land across the street from their current locations
Matinee where it is, Zub’s is still moving across the street. The new Zub’s will look a lot like old Zub’s: a counter at the end of the room with a kitchen behind it and booths in the space up front. The exception? This Zub’s will have its own
and building a new facility for their businesses. They were ready for an upgrade and saw a perfect opportunity to start their bars from
full-service bar with 20 taps. The kitchen will feature both the familiar Zub’s menu and the Capri menu, so you’ll be able to get pizza and
scratch, fixing everything they’ve struggled with over the years. The new building is huge, with
wings along with your Uncle Rico, if you so desire.
three separate 5,000 square foot spaces on the first floor and three luxury two-bedroom apartments on the second floor that will be up
The current Capri space will close. The current (continued on page 34)
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
or f n e Op
e r a u rewpub in Highland Sq
HAPPY HOUR: 1/2 off appetizers and $3 house drafts LUNCH SPECIAL: M-F 11:30am-3:00pm Late night menu after 10pm
Live music beginning in May! For details visit or www.ohiobrewing.com 804 W. Market Street, Akron, OH 44303 • (234) 208-6797 (at the corner of Highland Ave and W. Market St.) Hours: M-W 11:30-midnight, TH-Sat 11:30-Close, Sun 1pm-midnight
food & drink
No good story starts with a salad We have all witnessed some crazy things in our lives. The common denominator isn’t usually salad. Most of the ridiculous, funny and even ugly things we have witnessed in life have involved someone being completely schnockered. It's probably a good thing, too. Who needs to recall dancing a bit too enthusiastically to "Baby Got Back" the night before? Often these moments are comedy gold to anyone who is lucky enough to witness. These are the moments when great stories are born. My first bartending job was out on Montrose Hill in 1991 at a place that has since been leveled called Shadows. Since then, I have worked in various bars, drove many drunks to safety in a taxi and frequented the Northeast Ohio nightlife. I have more stories on this subject than I can count, and lucky you, I have started a Facebook page for The Bar Crawler where I will share some of said stories. More importantly, this will enable you, the reader, to share your stories with rest of us. So long as they don't result in someone getting seriously hurt or compromised, and are fairly clean and true, I will post them. If they are really funny, I might just put them in print.
The Getaway Pub
1947 W. Market St. 330-836-5012
1474 Copley Rd. 330-835-9872
1462 N. Portage Path 330-867-8700
1282 Weathervane Ln.
DIVE PICK of the MONTH
AREA IN AKRON
It's always happy hour
BIGGEST SELLERS BEER/LIQUOR
Pabst Blue Ribbon/ Jaegermeister
Dinkers/Yankos Valley Pub
The Double Olive
Eartha Kitt meets James Woods
Quincy Jones meets James Brown
Kirstie Alley meets Joe Walsh
LeBron James meets Steven Tyler
I used to go here quite a bit back in the day. They had a bartender that could drink anyone under the table and he proved it on nightly basis. Was amazing to see anyone do their job, any job, that drunk . A sight to behold.
If you are looking to dance to some R&B, this would be the place.
One of my guiltiest pleasures is watching people dance who have no rhythm. If you also have this sick affliction, I'll see you there!
Cut from a template of what a pub/sports bar should be.
(continued from page 33) Zub’s will change to a different food venue,
tops are being made out of refinished bowling alley wood, and the front bar and walls are covered with 100-year-old barn wood that
scaling down the menu to different varieties of oven and skillet cooked macaroni and cheese. Mario’s wife, Tiffany, has been using
Mario salvaged himself.
her cooking skills to come up with the recipes. The smaller, simpler menu will work better in that space and the dining area will have a ‘70s
better work!” he says.
theme (think Cheech and Chong).
July or August of this year. Ray’s is further ahead may open sooner. Although the plan has
Mario is most excited about having enough
changed along the way and taken about twice
space to accommodate their growth at Zub’s, about 20 percent a year. Soon, they’ll be able to provide guests with a more family-friendly
as long as planned, Mario is really happy with his decision to start the project.
atmosphere where they can get food and drink without being “Matinee-ed.” The bar and table
“It’s all done right, no half-assing” he says.
| THE Devil Strip / MAY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #5
Johnny J's Pub and Grille
“I’m not doing anything else after this, so it
We can look forward to a grand opening in
// Emily Anderson is really excited about the new Zub’s. To see what she thinks about the opening, follow her on Twitter
food & Drink
N K ʼS PL A C
For example: At an outdoor party a few years back, a friend of mine was absolutely buttered like a biscuit and was annoying the crap out of his fellow drinkers to the point where I was afraid someone was going to knock him out. At one point, he decided that he needed to relieve himself near some trees. On the way back, it appeared that he had forgotten to button his pants and was unaware they were falling down. When they hit his ankles, he took a nosedive right into the side of a parked car and to the horror of everyone there, just happened to be free-bagging it that night. There he laid on his back, knocked out, with his pride and joy hanging out for all to see. Other than a small cut on his nose, he was ok (thank God). It’s a moment at whose memory I will laugh for many years to come. Good thing he has no recollection. At the same party the following year, I drew an anatomically correct, human chalk line to commemorate this glorious moment. I, unfortunately, am going to owe him a
really nice dinner for telling you all about it. Find The Bar Crawler on Facebook to share your funny stories or post selfies at the bars we cover, using #AKBarCrawler. Remember to tell the bartender The Devil Strip sent you!
Enjoy responsibly, Leslie Shirley Nielson "The Bar Crawler"
Larry's Main Entrance
Max McQ's Bar & Grille
Mickey's in The Valley
1964 W/ Market St.
1562 Akron-Peninsula Rd.
1310 Weathervane Ln.
On The Rocks
1452 N. Portage Path 330-836-7625
1947 W. Market St. behind CVS 330-867-2776
Woody's Tavern/ Lazy Gator 1268 Weathervane Ln. 330-869-2855
Bud Lt./Jameson D.J.s/pool
great drinks and conversation
they don't mind if you bring your own in
Mike's Main Entrance and was a post office back in the 50's
always has been
Nothing. That's right. They made somethin outta nothin.
The Big Fish/The Dorm
F. Scott Fitzgerald meets Stephen Colbert
Bernie Kosar meets Jane Curtain
Tommy Lee meets Jay-Z
Shakira meets Emeril Lagasse
Paul Newman meets Scarlett Johansson
Chris Farley meets Amy Schumer
Cozy, cool decor and the high-back booths are great for those conversations that you don't want others to hear.
An everyman's bar
This is good place to meet your third wife.
Nice laid back place
Nice little joint. Hidden a bit off the main road, but definitely worth finding.
A good place to meet your first wife.
Adopt-a-bar by Leslie Shirley Nielson (The Bar Crawler)
The Southern Tap Room Location: Firestone Park Address: 1169 Grant St. Comments: If I had a time machine, this would be one of my stops in Akron. Until a few years ago, this place still had its light green marble facade with a ruby red neon sign that read Southern Tap Room in cursive. I only saw this place open with its sign on a few times back in the 90's, but it always turned my head. It had a simple Art-Deco feel on the inside. This must have been the place to be back in Akron's golden days.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
CuSTomer APPreciATion niGHT�
Buy One Drink, Get One 9:00 p.m. until midnight Compliments of TPH Productions $1.75 Pint Special $5.50 Burgers DJ Larry starts at 9 pm with early trivia Tuesdays Taco Nights $1.50 to $3.00 Drink Specials Available Wednesdays Chef Todd’s Food Specials Thursdays HALF OFF Regular Burgers (dine-in only) Fridays 12oz Strip Steak $12.00 Saturdays Check Out Our Live Music Schedule Sundays Karaoke hosted by Natalie (Now 9:00 to 1:00) $0.50 Wings (dine-in only) Super Power Hour From Open - 8:00 P.M. $3.50 Well Drinks $3.50 Bud Light Drafts
Monday through Friday Until 8pm Monday through Friday open at 2pm Saturday & Sunday open at 12:30
549 W Market St, Akron Phone: (330) 376-8307
food & drink
Get to know one of
Akron's Hidden Gems
A quality community cafe in South Akron that brings people from different backgrounds together Now serving homemade grits & healthy salads that will fill you up. Visit us for breakfast or lunch Monday through Friday • 7am to 3pm 798 Grant St., Akron, Ohio | (330) 375-1991
We Get You ...
Wow! This is great. I didn't even know this was back here," said everybody. Or, so it seemed. Maybe it was just every other person. Or, maybe every third person. But between the Thirsty Dog beer, the free massages from Tubbs Chiropractic and the giant Jenga, we heard that line a lot as the inaugural Live at Lock 4 event got rolling on the third Thursday in May. We got started with DJ Roger Riddle, spinning everything from classic soul and rock to 80s hits and Beyoncé. That warmed the crowd up for one of the most talented and inspiring musicians you're likely to see in Akron, a 16-year-old named Kofi Boakye who plays like a full-grown man. Then the venerable Jeff Klemm, on the verge of first-time fatherhood, joined The Letters for a hard charging set to close out the night. The next Live at Lock 4 event kicks off just after 5 pm on June 16 with Rebekah Jean and The Beyonderers, featuring Riddle on the turntables to open us up and dance us out. For details, visit thedevilstrip.com/home/liveatlock4
(continued from page 31) For the filling: 3 cups fresh rhubarb stalks, in half-inch thick slices 4 cups hulled and halved strawberries, quartered if large
© Sigrid Olsson / Alamy
¾ cup 1½ tbs Zest ¼ cup
• Where you want to go with TripTik® Travel Planner maps and directions
coconut sugar fresh lemon juice of 1 lemon quick-cooking tapioca
• What you want to know -
*Optional: pinch of fresh, grated ginger, orange zest, and/or a dash of cinnamon
• Help along the way -
1. Combine rhubarb, sugar, lemon juice & zest, and ginger/cinnamon (if using) in a large
with hotel, discount and gas price information
method, be sure to cut slits into the dough to let the steam escape as the pie cooks. 4. Using a pastry brush (or a clean paint brush if you don’t have one for pastries), lightly wash the exposed pie dough with milk and sprinkle with sugar. 5. Bake for 30 minutes, or until juices are thick and bubbling. Once the pie is ready, allow it to cool before serving. Or, eat it while warm with a scoop of ice cream. Either way, gobble it up and enjoy every last bite! // Lia likes to keep a glass of water by her bed at night.
with easy road service request
Our apps keep you mobile. Download today. AAA.com/mobile
the edges with a fork. If you use the latter
Her cat, Heathcliff, likes to knock over her glass of water in the middle of the night.
bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes or so, until the I want to hear from you, fellow bakers! juices collect in the bowl. Tweet me your finished products or 2. Toss in the strawberries and tapioca. questions at @liacpietro14, or feel free to email 3. Pour the filling into the chilled pie shell and smooth the top of the mixture. Make a lattice me with any questions, comments, or concerns at firstname.lastname@example.org. crust, or cover with the top crust and crimp
music & entertainment AKRON’S MUSIC SCENE
38 DEVIL’S DOZEN PICKS FOR JUNE 39 THE PRODIGAL DANCER RETURNS HOME 42 MR. BROWN IS ‘MILES AHEAD’ A’YOU
publisher Chris Horne this month, you’re likely to hear about how he got to interview Weird Al, who he’s idolized since first grade. Save yourself the trouble by reading about it on page 41. Then buy your ticket for Weird Al’s show on June 24 at the Civic.
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
If you go within 15 feet of
THE Devil Strip |
music & entertainment
ë ê å
The Devil’s Dozen by Brittany Nader & Andrew Leask
‹ Talons, Sam Craighead, Nowhere Friday, June 3 at Thursday’s Lounge, 9pm
The go-to Thursday-night dance spot also hosts First Friday events each month to spotlight local live music and connect bands with audiences in a fun, relaxed setting. This month, Thursday’s Lounge kicks off its event series by bringing in three Ohio-based experimental acts for an evening of psych rock-infused surprises and delights. Tickets cost $5 at the door.
å Florence + The Machine, Of Monsters and Men Saturday, June 4 at Blossom Music Center, 7:30pm As part of her 2016 “How Beautiful Tour,” the witchy, ethereal Florence Welch brings her powerful vocal stylings to the nearby outdoor venue. With a flair for dramatics and highquality production, Welch and her well-oiled ‘Machine’ of musical collaborators are sure to put on an unforgettable show. Joining the lineup is Icelandic indie folk-pop quintet Of Monsters and Men, known for their hit single, “Little Talks.” Ticket prices start at $20 and can be purchased through Live Nation.
ç Jason Isbell, Hiss Golden Messenger Saturday, June 4 at The Goodyear Theater, 8pm
folk artists Hiss Golden Messenger at the newly renovated Goodyear Theater on East Market Street. Doors open at 7pm, and tickets prices range from $30 to $45. Learn more at
‹ Shannon Eller Sextet
goodyeartheater.com. (Photo by David McClister)
pop to to opera. A versatile artist, Eller has also performed onstage as a dancer and musical theatre actress. On June 17, the Northeast Ohio singer brings her six-piece band to BLU
é The Midwestern Swing Thursday, June 9 at BLU Jazz+, 8pm Cincinnati-based jazz band Midwestern Swing
Friday, June 17 at BLU Jazz+, 8pm With her expressive and expansive voice, Shannon Eller has taken on everything from
Jazz+ for an evening of jazz and pop melodies.
takes its inspiration from the Western Swing bands of the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s. Its repertoire, influenced by both country and traditional jazz, features arrangements of songs from the
Tickets cost $15 and can be purchased at blujazzakron.com
classic Western Swing and Great American Songbooks. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at blujazzakron.com
Saturday, June 18 at Jilly’s Music Room, 8pm The Juke Hounds play traditional and original electric blues songs with a defiant “you can’t
‹ The Gage Brothers, Tall Tales of Akron,
keep me down” attitude. Since 2006, they have brought their Midwestern take on blues rock to
Alexa Mal, Angel Cezanne, Doug Hite
Sunday, June 12 at Hive Mind, 11:30am For a weekend change of pace, take part in Hive Mind’s Sunday brunch potluck show. Bring and share some food as you listen to folk and blues band The Gage Brothers, folk band Tall Tales of Akron, singer/songwriter Doug Hite and poets Alexa Mal and Angel Cezanne. Dining begins at 11:30 am, and live performances start at 12:30pm Donations taken at the door will benefit Ms. Julie’s Garden, an expansion of
A former member of the Drive-By Truckers, Isbell has become best known a solo act, mixing vegan restaurant Ms. Julie’s Kitchen. Find out soulful American roots with raw Northern more at facebook.com/HiveMindOH. Alabama southern rock. Isbell is joined by
è The Juke Hounds
packed houses across Northeast Ohio — and even down to Nashville, Tenn. Catch them at Jilly’s Music Room on June 18. No cover. Find out more at jillysmusicroom.com (Photo by Bruce Gates)
ê Jilly’s Songwriter Showcase, Hosted by Ryan Humbert Thursday, June 23 at Jilly’s Music Room, 7:30pm Jilly’s Music Room brings back its songwriter showcase this month, hosted by Ryan Humbert, whom the Akron Beacon Journal has called “one of the hardest-working singer/songwriters (continued on page 43)
music & entertainment
Homeward Bound How a skilled dancer decided to bring his talents back to Akron by Hillary Martter After spending several years in Manhattan, it can be a little disconcerting to transfer elsewhere. Matthew Roberts, a professional
of the auditorium, he began to mimic the moves of the dancers onstage. Having never taken a dance class, he caught the eye of some
Matthew Roberts strikes a pose in New York City,
dancer who was born and raised in Akron, discloses his thoughts on having to refamiliarize himself with his hometown.
of the instructors, and the rest is history.
young dancers in Akron, most still grow up and train tirelessly knowing they stand the greatest chance of realizing their professional-career dreams in larger cities — namely, New York City.
“I really enjoyed tap growing up, it was fun
February 2015. (Photo by Diego Guallpa)
“New York is more accessible. The subway
to perform and watch. The intricate rhythms that were possible always amazed me,” he
there makes it very easy to get around and things are closer together, as well,” admits
remembers of his start at Ed Davis Dance Troupe. Still, “My strength was in ballet... [and]
Roberts. “I don't have a car yet, so getting around can be a bit difficult and tedious right now. I'll also have to relearn the lay of the land
I liked the formula of the technique. It reminded of colleges to SUNY Purchase and Marymount Manhattan College. In the end, he chose me of math. As long as you did everything Marymount. correctly, things tended to work out. But,”
— I’ve forgotten where things are after seven years.”
Roberts adds, “...practice is still an integral component.”
Despite the commute-related difficulties,
Though smaller in scale compared to larger
“I chose [the school] because I wanted to be recover from such a low point in my life with in the city, and I enjoyed the smaller size of the the help of dance.” college and dance department,” Roberts says. It
Roberts is excited to be back in Akron.
cities, Akron has a rather impressive dance scene and deep-rooted history in performance art. As a pre-professional student at The
ended up being a good choice. “I was exposed to a lot a variety there. We had an impressive array of guest artist work with us.”
After enduring heartbreak, Roberts forged on with an established résumé and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in Choreography. Post-graduation, he set out
As his technique blossomed and his knowledge of dance grew even further, Roberts suddenly faced a blind-siding setback. His oldest sister, Danielle, passed away just before the start of his junior fall semester.
on the audition circuit. A gig with Blue Muse Dance Company introduced him to site-specific performance art (the dancers performed on the Pulaski Bridge, which links the New York (continued on page 46)
Roberts fell into dancing at the age of 10 — considerably much later than the average professional begins his or her training, as many have their first class around age three and are seriously committed by the age of seven or eight — when he accompanied his older sisters to an audition. Bored with waiting in the back
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
University of Akron’s Dance Institute, Roberts was exposed to area companies such as Ohio Ballet and GroundWorks DanceTheater from a young age. Even with the great opportunities available to
After talks of Juilliard and other conservatory programs in his senior year at Akron’s Ellet High School, Roberts had narrowed down his choice
“I didn't want to take a semester off and get stuck in a rut, but I also hated being in school and acting like everything was OK. After a strenuous fall season, I decided to pick myself up, and I choreographed a dance for her,” Roberts recalls. “Of the seven works I've created, it is still my favorite. I was able to
JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6 /
THE Devil Strip |
music & entertainment
è Highland Square
LIVE MUSIC é
Friday, 6/3 • 9pm – Midnight Steel Drum Trio – Caribbean Steel Drum Music Saturday, 6/4 • 9pm – Midnight Acid Cats – Funk-Jazz-Soul Fusion Sunday, 6/5 • 12 – 3pm Little Steve-O Blues Duo – Acoustic Blues & Rock Duo Friday, 6/10 • 9pm – Midnight F5 – Rock & Roll Saturday, 6/11 • 9pm – Midnight The Underworld – Blues
Standing Room å Litter Party (formerly Krill)
ê Five Akron Area Bands You Should Know
The dynamic duo, Billy Palmer (guitar, vocals)
People’s Pushes” and “7766” are tracks worth mentioning. The former highlights Palmer’s
and Jim Curtis (percussion), have been kicking ass and taking names for more than 10 years and have been putting out some insanely
fantastic lyrics, and the latter showcases Curtis’s rhythmic complexities and interesting choice of instrumentation. Check them out online
creative music all the while. As Litter Party, they have played many shows throughout the Midwest, and they currently reside exactly 50
at LitterParty.bandcamp.com and Facebook.com/LitterParty.
percent in Seattle (Palmer) and 50 percent in Akron (Curtis). Although merely a duo, they put out a major sound. They haven’t played any live shows recently, but they are still collaborating cross country. “Other
ç Dave Hammer’s Power Supply Dave Hammer (guitar/vocals) is the man every musician wants to hang with. He has a soulful presence and exudes charisma and showmanship. His cronies include monster
Sunday, 6/12 • 12 – 3pm Sonny Moorman – Blues Guitar
“Hey Chris, how’s it going?” he asked. “I’m doing well, Mr. Yankovic. How are you?” He laughed. “Good. Al’s fine, too.” That’s all the room I needed to launch into an awkward, rambling apology about how I was
Sunday, 6/19 • 12 – 3pm Jazz Shepherds – Jazz
Sunday, 6/26 • 12 – 3pm Anthony Papaleo – Blues, Jazz, Old-Time *NO COVER CHARGE HIGHLAND SQUARE: 867 West Market Street Akron, Ohio, 44303 • 330-434-7333
this trio is ultimately unanalyzable. According to their website, they are “...spinning their own delicious web of soulfully jazz-infused, progressive blues.” They have four albums out, and a TBD show is coming up in July. Check ‘em out at: DaveHammersPowerSupply. bandcamp.com.
But get one little phone call from Weird Al, and all I’m all twitterpated.
Balcony DJ Set Saturday, 6/18 • 9pm – Midnight DJ Naeno – Funky Dance Music
Saturday, 6/25 • 9pm – Midnight Dan Wilson – Eclectic
drumming and prodigious bass lines are all wrapped up in the same wacky package. Unpredictable, unbelieveable and unassuming,
with perfect calm while we talked inside the visitation room reserved for death row inmates at Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville, TN.
Friday, 6/17 • 9pm – Midnight Copali – An Instrumental Funk Fusion
Friday, 6/24 • 9pm – Midnight Mo’ Mojo – Zydeco & Roots
musicians: Chris Baker (drums) and Matt DeRubertis (bass), and they all make for a killer trio. Reckless guitar licks, impeccable
Daring to be Stupid 15 minutes on the phone with Weird Al Yankovic by Chris Horne Even just sitting there waiting for his publicist to politicians and the like — most of them cool, or at least interesting. Normally, I don’t care call, I was a mess. I don’t know what a vibrato what they think of me. Who they are matters is, but the way my heart was jackhammering, not. And the circumstances weren’t threatening that’s the word that comes to mind first. My either. I’ve been at the scene of an out-ofvibrato pulse. Because of Weird Al Yankovic. Keep in mind, I’ve done this before. I’ve interviewed dozens of celebrities, athletes,
control industrial fire and attended protests broken up by state troopers. I visited a man convicted of murder, sitting across from him
probably going to be a little awkward and likely to ramble because of my fandom. He has been a hero of mine since first grade. Prior to meeting my wife, getting married and having our lovely daughter, I’d have said the best day of my life was seeing Weird Al at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds on a September day 16 years ago, less than a year before 9/11. I told him about all that too... “Wow. How amazing,” he said, chuckling nervously because how else do you respond to that? At least by then I’d gotten comfortable again. “To be fair,” I explained, “I also had my picture taken with a monkey so that gave it a bump. You were the bigger part, of course, but the monkey contributed.” That’s how I ended the interview, but between the uncomfortable moments, we talked about
music & entertianment
My friends in Akron always talk about how
Kansas anymore. If you have a sense of humor and a penchant for the disturbed, Meow Meow Kitty is right up your alley. If you’re tired of the
amazing it was to see The Black Keys live before they got huge. I’m telling you, go out and see the Royalties before they do the same.
cookie-cutter muzak you hear on the radio, give these bastards a try. (WARNING: Not for the faint of heart, or those easily offended by
Royalties were created from a collaboration between Cleveland-based bands Inhale Exhale and Strangers to Wolves. With members Ryland Raus (vox / guitars), Cameron Perry (bass),
interesting music.) No shows in the near future, but miracles have been known to occur. Check them out at Soundcloud.com/MeowMeowKitty and Facebook.com/MeowMeowKittyMusic.
Tyler Bucks (guitars) and Max Rivera (drums), they have a fantastic alternative rock presence. After listening to just a couple of songs on
ê Chad Baker
YouTube, it was enough to get me hooked. I will definitely pick up the band’s newest EP, released on April 9. They’ve been on the scene a while and have played multiple shows in both Cleveland and Akron. Check their Facebook page for details on upcoming gigs: Facebook. com/weareRoyalties.
è Meow Meow Kitty The only performers in the genre of “Dad Rock” that are crazy as hell. Brought back from the future in order to blow your minds and woo your wives. The one and only: Meow Meow Kitty. The dual frontman team of Maze Haze and SPACEMAN Bond first performed together in 2045 on the karaoke deck of their University Class Starcruzer. The group features Maze Hazlett (rap skillz/keyz), SPACEMAN Bond (vocals), A.J. Hazlett (guitar, keys and beats) and Ryan “Shirtless Circus” Konn (bass/backup vocals). With songs such as “Poundtown,” “Digital Women” and “Space Sick,” you know that you better buckle up because you ain’t in Akron, art, music, pop culture, fame and why love-gone-right is terrible fodder for comedy. One of the miraculous things about Weird Al’s career is that every other album seems to introduce him to another generation of fans, which is certainly the case with his latest, “Mandatory Fun,” featuring parodies of Pharrell, Lorde, Robin Thicke and Iggy Azalea. But for any self-respecting Akron-loving fan over 35, you’ve got to have “Dare to Be Stupid,” in your top five. It’s a style parody of Devo’s eclectic sound that the A.V. Club called “more Devo than the real thing” because it proved to be an excellent vehicle for Weird Al’s penchant for skewering pop culture by
Chad Baker started playing in bars around Akron when he was 15 years old. He moved to Nashville in 2015 and has continued to hone his skills. He now travels across the country booking shows, not only in Nashville, but in places like Southern California as well. Baker (acoustic guitar/vocals) regularly plays with Dave Rudolph (lead electric guitar) and Mike Skinner (rhythm electric guitar). Baker has a fantastic voice, and he has nowhere to go but up. He may be young, but he brings a gumption and drive to his music that is rarely found amongst country artists these days. He has new music on the way and will be performing around Akron in June. If you’d like to know more, check him out at Facebook.com/ChadBakerCountry. Pictured Opposite: Litter Party, Photo by Katy D'Aurelio; Dave Hammer’s Power Supply, Photo by Heidi M. Rolf; Royalties, Photo by VonVisuals; Meow Meow Kitty, Photo by Jacob Bruckner; Chad Baker, photo courtesy of the artist // Clay Chabola loves the movie Waterworld. Yeah. I said it. Sue me.
commercially viable and things that I think are good,” he said. “I’ve always just done what I thought was fun and worthwhile. I realize the parodies are usually more popular, but it’s not like I do the parodies for them and I do the originals for me. I enjoy them both and the fans do as well.” For me, some of his best work is found among the pastiches — the aforementioned style parodies, that borrow a band’s signature sound to have fun riffing on different topics. These are
some of my favorite songs and include gems
like “Trigger Happy,” “Bob” and “Christmas at Ground Zero,” but the best could consume a whole category: Love gone wrong. Like “Melanie,” “Since You’ve Been Gone,”
Is that her in the bird mask?
appropriating it and sometimes, feeding back to “I Was Only Kidding” and “You Don’t Love Me Anymore”. us directly. Not at all unlike Devo. It’s no surprise he admires the band, but he was surprised to hear about the Mark
“If you’re doing comedy music, love gone right doesn’t exactly work,” he said. “I’m more
Mothersbaugh: Myopia joint show between the Akron Art Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland.
interested in when things go horribly wrong.”
“I’m a huge fan… I knew they were from Akron, but I wasn’t aware of the exhibit,” he said. “I’d love to see if I can get there with my schedule.” Considering all his success, you wonder if he’s figured out a formula for balancing what fans will love and what he enjoys doing. “I don’t make a delineation between things I think are
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
He has some personal experience with that, and it isn’t confined to matters of the heart either. In his career, he’s had some ups and downs that he had to push through. “It was definitely more devastating earlier in my career,” he said. “I always thought, ‘You know, you got to grab that brass ring while it’s there because pop careers are ephemeral. They don’t last that long, particularly if you’re doing comedy.’ That’s why I was doing an album every year in (continued on page 43)
SHOW Y D E M ULAR CO G E R A T
e Yoly go
Music & entertainment
Akron Apex of ENTERTAINMENT
INTIMATE PRFORMANCE SPACE, TOURING ARTISTS & LOCAL SONGWRITERS
GOODYEAR THEATER AND GOODYEAR HALL POISED AS NEW MUSIC HOTSPOTS LIVE JAZZ, FINE FOOD & SPIRITS
Venues Aim to Bring Community Together in Historic Location by Brittany Nader
FRIDAY, JUNE 3 • 8PM
Urban Luau - $10 featuring Carlos Jones and the PLUS Band * Umojah Nation & Human Nature
SATURDAY, JUNE 4 • 8PM House of Heroes - $10 Colors Album Release w/ Finding North
SUNDAY, JUNE 5 • 7PM
EarthQuaker Devices presents An Evening to Remember Stems, Relaxer, Idolos, Emotional Support Pigs, Doom Christ, Lisa Bella Donna & Faang Face $0 (aka - FREE)
FRIDAY, JUNE 10 • 9PM
SOLO PIANO WEDNESDAYS • 7PM
Showcasing the finest pianists in the greater NE Ohio area every Wednesday! - no cover
THURSDAYS, JUNE 9TH & 23RD Swing Dance Party 8PM (dance lesson at 7PM), $10-$15
SATURDAY, JUNE 4 •8PM Lucas Kadish Four - $12
JUNE 10 & 11 • 8PM
Ken Peplowski & Harry Allen $25 (advance), $30 (door)
THURSDAY, JUNE 16 • 8PM
BLU Jazz+ Jam w/Theron Brown - $8
SassafraZ - $8 Jojo Stella, G Finesse & The Black Eagle
FRIDAY, JUNE 17 • 8PM
SATURDAY, JUNE 11 • 9PM
SATURDAY, JUNE 18 • 8PM
FRIDAY, JUNE 17 • 9PM
JUNE 24 & 25 • 7PM & 9:30PM
Morrison Hotel - $10
Time No Reason - $10 REUNION SHOW
FRIDAY, JUNE 24 • 8:30PM Stiletto - Album Release - $8 w/ The Beyonderers & Royal Vasa
FRIDAY, JUNE 24 • 11:55PM Clay Cook - $15
Shannon Eller Sextet - $15
Aaron Weinstein - $20
Walter Beasley $30 (advance), $35 (door) Legendary contemporary jazz saxophonist & Billboard chart-topping recording artist blazes into the Rubber City for two unforgettable nights! Featuring Derek Johnson, Greg Smith, Ben Powers, Wayne Jones.
SUNDAY, JUNE 26 • 2PM
The spirit of community is alive and well here in
corporate headquarters remained rooted in
the Rubber City, and when compared to towns adjacent or relative in size, Akron has a certain characteristic that sets it apart from the rest.
Akron and maintained much of its original historic attributes, such as the large Goodyear signs on the building’s exterior and original
Community pride is thriving in this Northeast Ohio city, and the amount of support between various communities distinguishes
woodwork found across the first level of the building and the theater. Smith says $35 million
it from other regions. Officials and developers are taking note of this desire for connectedness, and on the east side of town, an iconic location is set to bring the city together in an environment where they can thrive professionally, artistically and personally. The East End project has been established to redevelop a historic Akron landmark, turning it into a campus of sorts that welcomes the general public and breathes new life into a segment of the city that has traditionally been north and west sides of town. This project is modernizing the former Goodyear campus, which was used for corporate meetings and recreational activities reserved for the company’s employees and their families. Other members of the community previously could not get into this exclusive space, but after a new headquarters location
The Outer Vibe - $10
SATURDAY, JULY 9 • 9 PM
THURSDAY, JUNE 30 • 8PM Michael Occhipinti & The Sicilian Project - $15
back to 1919 and is distinguished by its sloped ceilings and rolling door between its stage and
SUNDAY, JULY 17 • 9PM
FRIDAY, JULY 1 • 8PM
the attached gymnasium, Goodyear Hall. Just as the entire building will be transformed to connect members of the community together,
SATURDAY, JULY 2 • 8PM
these two venues will share a connectedness that will allow both halls to open up and
Like Tyrants - $10 w/ Tropic Bombs * Hell & Highwater * The Shadow Division
FRIDAY, JULY 8 • 8PM
If These Trees Could Talk - $10 w/ Relaxer * The Decoy
Digable Planets - $20
FRIDAY, JULY 29 • 9 PM Justin Townes Earle - $20
51 E. MARKET ST. AKRON, OH 44308
Blue Lunch - $12
Sharon Rae North - $15
47 E MARKET ST. AKRON, OH 44308
were spent on East End renovations, adding new electrical, heating, cooling and plumbing, as well as windows and floor systems in the building’s residential units. Panels were installed to absorb sound coming from the Goodyear
Theater and Hall to make sure tenants will not removed from the entertainment regions on the be disturbed during events.
The Cue presents: “The Brunch Experience” $25 (advance), $30 (door) - 21+ only Brand & culture curators, The Cue, connect creative talent in a special brunch series event featuring music, food, mimosas and fun! Soundscapes provided by The Untouchables, Illy.
SATURDAY, JUNE 25 • 9PM
Pictured above: The historic Goodyear Theater, renovated to seat 1,458 concert attendees. Pictured left: Singer-songwriter Gavin DeGraw performs at The Goodyear Theater in Akron during his 2016 tour. Photos courtesy of Elevation Group and IRG.
was chosen for the tire and rubber company, a plan was set in motion to open up this massive location to the entire city, reutilizing its square footage to establish a live, work, play environment that brings people together. One of the most impressive components of this mixuse space is the Goodyear Theater, which dates
“The venues offer something that isn’t in the market today,” Smith says. “The theater’s seating capacity — which seats 1,458 — and the investment in sound and lighting offers a different type of venue from what you see anywhere else in the community.” The Goodyear Theater celebrated its opening in April, bringing in big-name headlining acts like The Smashing Pumpkins, Liz Phair, Gavin DeGraw and Josh Turner, and is marked by its more intimate environment and focus on high-quality production. The Goodyear Hall portion was traditionally used by the company’s employees as a gymnasium, and it will be modernized to house concerts and other recreational performances with a large amount of floor space to hold thousands more attendees. The hall is housed in an area that contains 17,000 square feet of retail space and 7,000 square feet of former bank space. All of this available footage will eventually be used for
become one massive entertainment venue.
restaurants and storefronts, creating an entirely contained shopping, dining and entertainment
Carol Smith, vice president of IRG Realty
district that allows event attendees to grab a bite or drink before the show without having to drive all around the city. (continued on page 43)
Advisors, has been involved with the Goodyear redevelopment project since 2007. Smith and her team wanted to ensure the former
music & entertainment (continued from page 42) “You could rent an apartment in Goodyear Hall and really never have to go outside,” Smith
(continued from page 38) he has parodied for decades. “Mandatory Fun,” his 14th and latest studio album, topped the
says. “There’s an underground tunnel residents can walk through and go work in their office, then go to a restaurant and then a concert. It’s
Billboard 200 chart in 2014 — the first comedy album to do so since 1964. Al’s accompanying “Mandatory World Tour” brings him back to
very contained and very easy to get from one place to another.”
Akron this month. Tickets start at $37.50 and can be purchased at akroncivic.com (Photo courtesy of Live Nation)
The building already houses tenants in its redeveloped apartments, and Smith explains they are a mixed group of various ages and professions. She says the residents have been vital in giving her team feedback on events, and her booking and promotional partners have established enough variety in the types of entertainment that it will cover the interests of the wide range of tenants occupying the building, as well as the outside community. The Elevation Group, based in Cleveland, is in charge of entertainment booking, and as the company’s goals expand, they may schedule more comedy acts and performance art in both the hall and theater. Along with national performers, local musicians like Red Sun Rising will hit the theater’s stage in upcoming months. The goal is to book at least 150 concerts per year, and Smith says the developers plan to fill out the rest of the building with more establishments that embody the live, work, play environment they are working to create. Though walkthroughs of the entire development are not open for the public, she conducts private tours for anyone interested in opening up a retail shop or restaurant and can be contacted at email@example.com to set up an appointment.
í Stiletto! Friday, June 24 at Musica, 8:30pm Local indie-rock favorites, Stiletto!, will perform a special set debuting new songs off of their new EP. The album release show also hallmarks the band’s decade-long career, and to celebrate, the band will bring several surprise musical guests to their performance on June 24. Following Stiletto!’s set, acoustic artist Drake White will hit the Musica stage, fresh off of his opening set for the Zac Brown Band at Blossom that same evening. Tickets cost $7 and can be purchased at the door or online at liveatmusica.com. (Photo by Ilenia Pezzaniti)
‹ Like Tyrants, Tropic Bombs, Hell & Highwater, The Shadow Division Saturday, June 25 at Musica, 9pm Cleveland post-hardcore outfit Like Tyrants headlines a special evening of local-music goodness. Tropic Bombs, a reggae/funk band, along with indie-rock Akronites Hell & Highwater and The Shadow Division — whose members hail from Cleveland, Los Angeles and the UK — round out the eclectic lineup, the result of which will indubitably be a booming wall of sound enveloping downtown on this particular Saturday night. The all-ages show costs $10, and tickets can be purchased at the door or online at liveatmusica.com.
ì Dave Hammer and Friends Wednesday, June 29 at Jilly’s Music Room, 8pm Back from a prolonged stint busking on the THE GOODYEAR THEATER WILL HOST THE FOLLOWING CONCERTS THIS SUMMER: June 4 at 8pm............................... Jason Isbell, Hiss Golden Messenger July 20 at 8pm ...................................... Dawes Aug. 11 at 8pm .........................The Australian Pink Floyd Show Aug. 28 at 8pm ....................... 3 Doors Down, Pop Evil, Red Sun Rising Tickets are available for purchase at
GoodyearTheater.com (continued from page 41) the 80s. I desperately trying to ‘stay out there.’ If there was every any downturn, I immediately thought, ‘Well, that’s it. That’s the end of
streets of New Orleans, local favorite Dave Hammer returns to Akron with his powerful blues-soaked riffs and inspired songwriting. Hammer has been known as a founding member of bands such as Dave Hammer’s Power Supply and Tall Tales of Akron, and his time spent across the country has, no doubt, bulked up his catalog of tunes and evolved his masterful and enthusiastic playing. Bid June a proper farewell by catching Hammer and friends at Jilly’s for free. Learn more at jillysmusicroom.com.
attitude helps explain his longevity. Not only has he adapted to the wild swings of pop culture and music, but he rode a 32-year-long record
deal through technological sea change and the music industry’s most turbulent times by
The secret for him — now at least — is knowing he’s done work of which he can be
eventually mastering digital media that helped “Mandatory Fun” become the first comedy album to debut at the top of the charts.
proud. It’s no longer devastating, he says, recalling a line by Neil deGrasse Tyson about the difference between the climate (should remain steady) and the weather (always changes). “I try to be the climate, not the weather.” That
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
But, in my opinion, he’s still best enjoyed live and in person, which you can do at the Akron Civic Theatre on June 24. For tickets, visit akroncivic.com. To see the longer interview, check out thedevilstrip.com.
Opening June 3rd
Rachel Weisz and Colin Farrell star in Yorgos Lanthimos’ new film:
–– 91% on Rotten Tomatoes ––
30 N HIGH ST AKRON HISTORIC ARTS DISTRICT NEAR CRAVE, URBAN EATS, & NUEVO
music & entertainment
IS MILES AWAY FROM THE AVERAGE BIOPIC
SETS THE BAR ‘MILES AHEAD’
by Andrew Leask
Photo by Julia Chabola.
Musical biopics, in general, operate under a simple plot formula. They’re straightforward rags-to-riches stories with just enough twists
Cheadle (who also wrote and directed the film), spends his days fending off record company executives desperate to get their hands on his
The downside of this approach is that the film’s deliberately disjointed nature often robs its scenes of emotional resonance. Davis’ ex-wife,
thrown in to support the obligatory message about the perils of fame. Each film practically writes itself.
latest recording. The abrupt appearance of a conniving Rolling Stone reporter, played by Ewan MacGregor, launches Davis into a frantic
Frances Taylor, for example, appears only in flashback, and while her flashbacks appear in chronological order, they fall just short of
Then, pick a new subject. Rinse. Repeat. The
escapade straight out of a Guy Ritchie crime comedy.
adding up to a full character arc. Instead, Taylor — like so many women in biopics of male
The film distinguishes itself by taking structural
subjects — ends up existing mostly for context. That’s a shame, because Emayatzy Corinealdi’s
results can vary widely in quality, but rarely do in structure.
cues from jazz music, cutting from present action to flashback like a trumpeter juggling melodic threads. Much of the film’s genius is in these jumps, which have the unpredictable yet dreamily logical quality of a great improvised solo. It’s surprisingly satisfying to watch the wall of an elevator slide away to reveal a vision of Davis’ estranged wife, or to see Davis grimacing from a gunshot wound morph into Davis grimacing after hip surgery.
Whatever else can be said
about “Miles Ahead,” the recent film about the late jazz musician Miles Davis, it is not a paint-bynumbers biopic. The film fictionalizes — indeed, completely invents — an episode during Davis’ late-1970’s semiretirement. Lost in a haze of cocaine and liquor and living off of an advance from Columbia Records, Davis, played by Don
performance is possessed of pathos and soul, even though it turns out to have little payoff.
by Clay Chabola
Herbie Hancock once said, “...in Jazz we share, we listen to each other, we respect each other, we are creating in the moment. At our best, we're non-judgmental.” The talent on stage at BLU Jazz+ (“not just a color, but an attitude of gratitude,” as owner Tony Troppe reiterates before every performance) on April 27 was incredible. Lighting up the stage were local jazz virtuosos Theron Brown, Jon Lampley, Chris Coles, Dan Pappalardo and Zaire Darden. Miles Davis was the theme for the evening, and they showed it off with charts written or inspired by the legend: “Old Milestones,” “So What,”
Clearly, however, the film is less interested in her more conventional story of love turned sour “Little Melonae,” “Fall,” “Gingerbread Boy,” and “My Funny Valentine” filled out the set list. by fate and fame than it is in Davis’ cocainefueled quest to hold on to a part of himself that the world is determined to take away. That is a The performance was scheduled as a special after-party event following the premiere fascinating story, though, and “Miles Ahead” is a singular film, even if it leaves little room for of “Miles Ahead” at the nearby Nightlight Cinema, in which Brown played a young Herbie characters other than Davis. // Andrew Leask spends his spare time plucking ineptly at his electric guitar while his wife, Amy, and their two cats cover their ears.
Hancock. You could tell the group of players shared a strong bond, and it showed throughout their performances that evening. They know each other's strengths and weakness, and their (continued on page 46)
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| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
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back of the book
The Space Between (My Ears, That Is) by Georgio Pelogrande When I set out to create a catalogue of writing that would inspire great thinkers amongst
Reading Room. There is a grown woman wearing snow pants. The clock on the wall
the general population of the world I only gave myself one rule: "write about what you think (about.)" Hence, the title of the column named itself. Since then, I've strayed from the
is just flat out wrong. On the shelf of books about Black History Month there is a SpiderMan graphic novel (and not one starring Miles Morales, either.) There is a painting on the wall
path a bit. I've written about my family history, my uncle's restaurant, my children's book, and so on. While those topics are certainly entertaining, they do not necessarily reflect what I'm thinking about.
that looks like barf. Now porn guy is doing his taxes, while still secretly watching porn. The lady waiting for the copier just got her turn and guess what- it's out of toner. I knew that was coming. Oooh, she's mad.
So, as an act of penance for not sticking to the formula, I will now pen a new column entirely on the fly, consisting only of what I am thinking at this very moment. Ready? Here we go:
Here's an interesting fact: libraries still have encyclopedias. Who knew? However, as if to shame them, they've placed their collection of World Books right next to the bank of computers with free internet. That's like going
I'm in a library. I'm typing. The guy next to me is trying to look at porn but he's trying to hide
over to your cousin Fippo's house and throwing your car keys down on the table right next to
it by having Yahoo News up and reducing the video screen into the very bottom corner. But I can see it. And, I can hear it. He's wearing headphones but he's got the volume way up. He caught me looking. Crap.
his bus pass. Sorry Fippo, some days I just don't have time to take you to work even though we live right next door to each other and work exactly the same shifts at Uncle Chaz's restaurant.
What else is going on in here? Let's see... Oh, some lady is waiting to use the copier. She looks irritated. The guy using the copier in front of her seems to be copying every single page
See, there I go again. Right back to the Pelogrande drama. Well, I'd better get up and get going. I think Mr. Pornsmith knows I'm writing about him. But first, I will leave you with
of a very thick book one at a time. I try not to get involved, but I feel like I have to. I'm going
my all time favorite quote about thinking.
to go tell him that he could just check the book out and save everyone a whole load of time. I'll be right back.
"For if only to have a fleeting thought, one may expand their soul and learn to love as if once they had been lost at sea with
That didn't go well. He asked me to mind my own business. The lady looked at me like I was
only a book by the great Nicolas Sparse. Hencewhile, one must think, and grow and then think more, ever growing in their
weird. I gave her a look back as if to say, "Me? You're the weird one, lady."
knowledge of science and math." - Georgio Pelogrande
Think hard. Read. Don't watch porn at the
One of the librarians is going around asking if
library. Thank you and you're welcome.
anyone needs their pencil sharpened. It must be // Georgio Pelogrande is a parody sports, traffic and a slow day for her. There is an old man sleeping in the Teen
AKRON MUSIC, ART & CULTURE
weather reporter. Catch him most Saturdays from 8 pm to midnight on The Altered Realm radio show on KRMAradio.com
MAY 27 JUN 3 JUN 10 JUN 17 JUN 24
Dirty Deeds Extreme AC/DC Tribute with Grunge DNA Straight On Heart Tribute Band with Shivering Timbers The Stranger A Tribute to Billy Joel with Victory Highway Absolute Journey The International Tribute to Journey with Karri Fedor & Kerosene Full Moon Fever America’s Premier Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers Tribute with The Juke Hounds
Gates open at 6 p.m. Concerts begin at 7 p.m. Free Admission
Tony! Toni! Toné! with Rumpelstiltskin $10 Admission
Purchase tickets at 6 p.m. day of show. No pre-sale. Cash only. Gates open at 6 p.m. Concert begins at 7 p.m.
Rib, White and Blue Rib Festival
Ohio’s Largest July 4th Rib Festival FREE Admission / 11a.m. – 11 p.m.
JUL 1 Bruce in the USA World’s #1 Tribute to Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band/8:30 p.m. with Vanity Crash/6:30 p.m.
JUL 2 Slippery When Wet The Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute/8:30 p.m. Electric Mud/6:30 p.m.
JUL 3 Hotel California The Original Tribute to The Eagles/8:30 p.m. with Zach and the Bright Lights/6:30 p.m.
JUL 4 Akron Symphony Orchestra/8 p.m.
AKRON’S OFFICIAL FIREWORKS DISPLAY/9:45 p.m. Alex Bevan/4:00 p.m. The Freedom Brass Band/6:00 p.m. TRAMONTE DISTRIBUTING CO.
back of the book
UrineLuck: Boozy Bathrooms and Lots of Soap the stalls. I dig this separation.
and risk arrest because your parts aren’t the
The fake sticks in the larger-than-life vases might be craft sticks or potpourri whips, if that’s a thing. This doesn’t look like a bar bathroom-
right parts for the bathroom, well, then, you might want to think of alternatives. Of course, after watching the infomercial, it seems like using your trusty old Speedicath for a night of
-or anteroom. Well, it doesn’t look like the kind of bar bathroom I’m used to. This could be in a church or somewhere nondescript.
drinking is a solid alternative.
Maybe Summit Art Space has spoiled me, but I’m like “Where is the rustic disco vibe, the chic artwork, the emery boards, the personal
room, the only other issue I have with the bathroom situation at Hoppin’ Frog is the two soap dispensers. For a single-stall, individual bathroom, two industrial-type soap dispensers
Aside from the potential line outside the ladies’
seemed like overkill, considering there is The actual bathroom at Ray’s is about the same size as the anteroom and contains a handicap
probably only ever one person washing their hands at a time. It would be cool to be able to soap both your hands at the same time, but these aren’t automatic, so you lose. This broke my heart a little more, and then…
words and photo by Emily Dressler
stall, a non-handicap stall, a sink, two soap dispensers, and a paper towel dispenser. In this HOPPIN’ FROG BREWERY: Urine Luck, there are a total of two bathrooms, ….I GOT NOTHIN’ HERE two sinks, and four soap dispensers. That’s a lot words and photo by Marissa Marangoni of soap! Also, look at the photo and please tell This place is obviously known for their beer list. me if this sink is plugged in. It can’t be, right? I’d tell you I had five, but you’d probably post
To deal with some Kent nostalgia, we went to Ray’s Place in Fairlawn (I call this the satellite office). This place is clean and even smells like soap. Like actual soap instead of a disinfectant lemon scent.
A wall-mounted hand sanitizer station is next to my pregnant picture on Facebook and then call the exit. This is perfect for all you germaphobes FOX 8, so I’ll just tell you that I had a few sips of other people’s beers, and I will definitely return or for those who just like the smell of alcohol to this local haunt when I am without child. that dries out your skin and kills all your good
drinking friends were imbibing, the waitress met me there and handed me the most beautiful, house-made ice cream cookie sandwich I’ve ever seen. Complete with
Ladies, don’t make the same mistake I did and assume that the women’s room is by the bar next to the men’s room. It is not. And then there you are, standing by yourself, turning in circles looking for the women’s restroom.
RAY’S PLACE: THE UNTAPPED POTENTIAL
The women’s room is by the entrance and don’t ask me why because I don’t know. I can’t remember where the restrooms were when this was the Winking Lizard. It’s weird how when a place changes, it’s hard to remember what it
This bathroom--and special anteroom--is clean and well-kept, but it could stand to have a bit more personality, potpourri whips notwithstanding.
Ray’s Place in Fairlawn earns 4 out of 5 toilets, mostly because I want to hang out in the anteroom and work as a bathroom attendant.
used to be. Before getting to the meat and potatoes of the bathroom, there’s an anteroom with a mirror along the wall, a shelf, and some fake stick decorations. There’s a separate door leading to
Mon.-Thurs: 11am-12am; Fri.-Sat.: 11am-1am Sunday: 11am - 11pm
performer that evening, Brown was that tide. He is a positive influence on both the music “mistakes” often become the best parts of their and the attitudes of those he plays with. He expressed this on stage not only with his skilled improvisations. Fittingly, Hancock once told a story about Miles Davis when they both played piano performance, but also with a simple message: “I’m honored to play with the guys a show together in Stockholm, Sweden. Davis Hancock played a “wrong” chord. Thinking he had ruined the tune, Hancock was relieved when Davis improvised a phrase that made his chord work in context. This “art of listening” is something that all of the young men on stage at BLU that evening consistently excel at.
that are up on this stage, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.” Chris Coles and Jon Lampley make for an amazing horn duo, and you could hear that they were giving each other ideas throughout their improvising, challenging each other and, at the same time, encouraging one another
as well. Pappalardo, Darden and Brown A great jazz pianist has to be able to not only improvise well, but musically accompany in such make for a hell of a rhythm section, and the communication between them was palpable. a way that it elevates the rest of the group. There was truly some swinging going on, and The University of Akron Jazz Professor Jack Schantz once said, “A great jazz pianist is a tide Akron should be proud to have a group like this in their midst. that lifts all boats,” meaning he or she plays in such a way that it inspires those playing along and lifts them to new heights. As the featured
I found myself visiting the Frog’s facilities quite early in the evening. The women’s room is clean, bright, and spacious--and--bonus--a single stall room with a real, locking door. My fave. Everything worked as intended and the visuals were cool. A fancy mirror, a nice piece of art, a schedule of the bands playing on the wall.
Ray’s Place 25 Ghent Rd, Fairlawn, OH 44333 (330) 835-2233
(continued from page 43)
was ascending to the crux of his solo when
Especially for the beer milkshake. Listening to everyone rave about how good it was sort of made my heart break. But! Stay tuned. The heartbreak was short-lived.
// Clay Chabola is a musician & gamer and sometimes worries about his low self-esteem.
| THE Devil Strip / JUNE 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #6
While I am partial to the single-stall bathroom, I imagine that when the Frog gets...hoppin’, the ladies’ room line could get pretty long, so unless you’re willing to brave the men’s room (continued from page 39) City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens), and from there he accepted a job with Lustig Dance Theatre in New Jersey, where he remained for three seasons. After a sprained ankle acquired during a “Nutcracker” performance threatened his future as a dancer, Roberts took some time to consider his options. Again, he was resilient. “The road to [recovery] was a long one, filled with months of physical therapy, depression, modified ballet classes… ice baths and a couple [instances] of re-rolling the ankle,” he explains. But, recover he did. After healing, regaining strength and setting up residence in the Bronx, Roberts fully intended to again audition for NYC-based companies. However, after a few brief discussions with
When I returned to the table where all my
chocolate sauce. Just because of my clearly pregnant, non-drinking state. My heart was quickly repaired, and after extra glasses of water to wash the dessert delight down, I found myself visiting the bathroom just once more for old time’s sake.
The toilets at Hoppin’ Frog get 4 out of 5 from me. The ice cream sandwiches get 10 out of 5. Hoppin’ Frog Brewery 1680 E Waterloo Rd., Akron, OH 44306 (330) 352-4578 Mon. 5-10 pm; Tues. -Thurs. 11am - 10pm Fri. & Sat. 11am - 11pm
friends and loved ones back in Akron, he started to chart a new course. “Opportunities kept falling into place like a movie, and I eventually realized that the Lord was definitely helping me make this a reality,” he says of his decision to relocate back to Akron. Roberts is now a company member with Neos Dance Theatre. They perform ballet and contemporary work in Akron, Mansfield, Oberlin and Findlay. In Akron, you can see their performances at the Heinz Poll Summer Dance Festival at Firestone, Hardesty or Goodyear Parks, or Glendale Cemetery this year. Dates and locations to be announced. // Hillary Martter wears many hats, one of which leads her to write on occasion. She currently resides in Akron with her newborn pup, Lena.
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Published on Jun 2, 2016
Published on Jun 2, 2016
This is a wild one. On deadline, we learned Dr. Scott Scarborough would be leaving the University of Akron and had to spring into action so...