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8 Will Akron be an oasis from the RNC? 21 The Devil Strip revisits The Selfie 30 Hard way? LeBron did it ‘The Akron Way’



C o l S e , a h n s e r F o

Akron’s Art Bomb Brigade strikes Downtown Laundry pg. 19



Watchdog in trouble for being a watchdog


Hope for an opiate epidemic game-changer


Will the real Olive Jar please stand up?


THE ARTS 14 On the road with Mark Mothersbaugh 16 Hanging museum art at home without theft

The Devil Strip

19 Shane Wynn won’t let you be #Overlooked

12 E. Exchange Street 2nd Floor Akron, Ohio 44308

Publisher: Chris “electric with rage” Horne

Email: Phone: 330-555-GHOSTBUSTERS

38 41

FEATURE 21 The [Self] Portraits of Akron

Art Director: Alesa “doesn’t sleep” Upholzer Managing Editor:

M. Sophie “Has Many Names, Wears Many Hats” Hamad Email: Visuals Editor: Svetla “The Balkan Comrade” Morrison Copy Editor: Jessica “My name is not Jecca” Cherok Director of Sales & Distribution:

CULTURE CLUB 29 Changing the narrative around black men 32 The Trouble with Old People

TJ "loves that movie ‘Newsies’" Masterson Email:

38 Ms. Meneer goes to Washington

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',

41 Rampin’ up the rhubarb revival 42 Brooklyn coffeeshops to farm to table 43 You and Brew at the Zoo

WTF Video Girl Writer” Pezzaniti

Staff Writers, Columnists & The A/V Club:

Emily “Lady Beer Drinker” Anderson; Melanie “newbie for now” Anderson; Rick “Small Business Chronicler” Bohan; Holly “The Wanderer” Brown; Christina “no paddles, flow downstream” Dearing; Sam "Buzzkilling Feminist" DePaul; Emily “Potty Perfectionist” Dressler and Marissa Marangoni, Bathroom Culture Enthusiast; Brian “Wemlo Twinge” Dunphy; Grace “Always Running Away” Ebner; Kait "rice cake enthusiast" Erdman; 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; Hillary "Gets Lost in Her Own World but Reappears if There is Dancing Involved" Martter; TJ “Don’t Call Me Shirley” Masterson; Krissy "Someone make me a real fish taco before I go insane" O'Connor; the absolutely real and totally non-fictional Georgio Pelogrande; Lia “Just One More Slice” Pietrolungo; Roger Riddle, Wears the Purple Pants; Amanda "That Crazy Cat Lady" Sedlak-Hevener; Nicole “likes the way Akron sounds” Stempak; Steve “is not a zombie” Van Auken; Patrick “Pattycakes” Worden; and The Shane Wynn Supremacy

CONTACT US: Office ....................................................................(330) 842-6606 General Info Advertising .......................................... Distribution .................................... Website ................................................. Facebook 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.

table of contents 48 43

48 Devil of a good time: Live music picks 51 Jul Big Green doesn’t do it for the money


52 Film Freak-out: ‘Ghostbuster’ Kristen Wiig

Little One is 9 years old and weighs about 100 pounds. This big boy is obviously not so little anymore but his heart is as big as him! He can be shy when first meeting new people and would do best in an adult only home. He shows potential with dogs but he prefers them to be as laid back as he







MUSIC & ENTERTAINMENT Music ............................................ Brittany “Sass Master Flash” Nader Music .................... Clay “Needs a Whimsical Middle Name” Chabola Entertainment .............. Andrew “Has a Mighty Fine Beard” Leask



is. If you have room in your heart for this not so Little One, stop down at the PHSGA today! Meet Erika! This pretty girl arrived at our shelter with her 6 kittens after being found by a Good Samaritan. Erika is very sweet and affectionate! She just loves to be around people and soak up as many pets and as much love as she can get! Erika seems to enjoy playing with toys when she is feeling playful, but she is happiest curling up right next to you for lots of love! Before Erika was ready to be put up for adoption she helped surrogate nurse an orphaned kitten! This special lady has given so much of herself to not only her kittens but one who found without a mother! Erika surely deserves to make her way into a forever home soon where all of the attention can be made hers! If you're interested in adding this precious girl to your home, please stop by our shelter and ask to meet her today! PAWSibilities Humane Society of Greater Akron 7996 Darrow Rd., Twinsburg, OH 44087 | 1.888.588.8436 | 330.487.0333 | |

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


pub notes

Pub Notes >>

About the Cover Myers School of Art alum and friends (art) bomb laundry If you hurry, when you read this, you can get over to Downtown Laundromat (1035 S. Main St.) in time for their July 8 kick-off party (from 6 pm to 9 pm) with The Dreemers, local food, art, vintage goods and t-shirts. The good news is, even if you miss the party, your eyes can still feast on the 3000 sq. ft. mural they’re celebrating. It’s the first strike by the Art Bomb Brigade, a Knight Arts Challenge


Stats are adjectives, not facts. These small fictions weren’t invented to keep score inside the game, but rather to help fans keep score afterwards as we debate where a player falls

David Giffels or Hoppin’ Frog brewmaster Fred Karm, and those adopting Akron as home, our Brent Wesleys (Akron Honey Co.) and Nicole Mullets (ArtsNow).

In wrestling, it’s called a “heel turn.” It means

on the greatness scale. Yet nothing about back-to-back 41-point games in the Finals or a triple-double in the decisive Game 7 come close

Yeah, hard work and persistence pay off, but it’s missing the point to think that’s the only moral

means the good guy suddenly strides into the ring wearing a black hat. Now he’s the bad guy. It’s scripted in the WWE, and it was scripted in these 2016 NBA Finals — just not in the

to describing LeBron James. He’s no longer just playing a game. He’s telling a story in which he’s a character and the narrator. That’s why these are the only two stats that come close:

of the story. LeBron is changing the story of Akron and Northeast Ohio from being a place talent must leave to find fulfillment to being a place that talented people choose, a place

way that Ayesha Curry might like to believe because LeBron James was holding the pen. His Cavaliers broke the saddest streak in sports by

1.3 million people packed Cleveland’s streets for where they can apply their gifts to the benefit a parade and 30,000 Akronites flooded Lock 3 of the community. to see him hoist the Larry O’Brien Trophy.

forcing the Golden State Warriors into a heel turn. One day, LeBron may be the consensus Greatest of All-Time on the court, but he could

It’s tempting to think he’s reached the end of The Hero’s Journey, which, distilled into 12

His return crystallized the return-and-contribute narrative, which was already alive in people like The Social Dept.’s Andy Taray, Mary

already be the best storyteller in sports.

stages by Christopher Vogler, begins its last

Hospodarsky of Sweet Mary’s Bakery and Akron

Maybe ever. More than three years before we moved to

leg with “The Road Back” and concludes with “Return with the Elixir.” But I’d argue LeBron is still mid-journey and he knows it.

Planning Director Jason Segedy, the undisputed king of tweeting maps. This championship is a sign you can be excellent and pursue your

Akron, I was pulling for the city. Even in the deep South, LeBron was a figure so looming, you referenced him to explain to non-sports people who The Next Big Thing was — “He’s

Coming back to the Cavs wasn’t easy. He was tested, stumbled, overcame and learned who his allies are. That’s stage six. Going into

“I’ve always said Akron’s tagline should be: ‘You can make a difference here.’” That’s

the LeBron James of foosball!” But that wasn’t why I was watching The Decision. The stakes hooked me. I was disappointed as an otherwise

the 2016 Finals against a Warriors team that actually improved since dispatching him in last year’s Finals — the NBA’s first unanimous MVP

how Barbara Feld put it at Arts Alive! as she accepted a lifetime achievement award in a room full of creatives at the Summit Artspace.

purpose here, but the folks above are the proof.

disinterested third party, so I can’t imagine what and a record-breaking season — that was stage that moment was like here. I wanted him to seven, “Approach to the Inmost Cave.” Down be a hero. This wasn’t what heroes did. Or, so I thought.

abroad are hearing the call — they damn sure are — but whether we can be like the Cavs organization to their LeBron. It’s more than providing resources for success. There has to be a team, a community. That, I think, is our next step: Taking Akron’s seemingly inherent collaborative spirit another step forward into an active community that stretches across our

story I wanted. This is what heroes do. Literally, or at least literarily. Folks call it “The Hero’s Journey,” short-hand for the stages described

Everyone, understandably, has focused on the “Nothing is given. Everything is earned” part of LeBron’s letter, but the most important part is

21+ neighborhoods to engage nonprofits, civic groups small businesses, creatives and artists and all their audiences.

by mythologist Joseph Campbell that fictional protagonists proceed through on the way to fulfilling their destiny. Think “Star Wars.”

what immediately precedes it.

Two summers ago, as Akronites, we were driving back to my hometown in Georgia when Sports Illustrated posted LeBron’s “I’m coming home” letter. I begged my wife to read it aloud while I drove. Twice. I teared up. This is the

winning project from the Myers School of Art

LeBron likened his years in South Beach to

He openly dreams of a day when some folks will return from their own journeys, put down roots and contribute to the local culture and

at the University of Akron and Professor Elisa Gargarella, the artist-scholar behind the Arts LIFT program, which led to badass murals at Angel Falls Coffee and Land of Plenty.

college, said he learned to win there. I think he learned how much storytelling matters. Had

economy. This is the vision, his #ImagineAkron moment. Then he drops the hammer: “Our

he bought into (gag) “personal branding,” he’d have re-upped with The Heat or chased championships in New York or L.A. He referenced it in his letter, that moment of

community, which has struggled so much, needs all the talent it can get.” He doesn’t say “all the victories” or “all the trophies” — and when he says talent, he means people. The

leaving. The hero, initially, refuses The Call.

ones who return, those who stayed, like writer

For this new endeavor, Myers alumus Matt Miller, a painter/illustrator/printmaker/tattoo artist, worked with a team of UA art students and high schoolers to bring to life his sketches — some of which you see on the cover of this issue. (It’s a big mural. We only have so much

The question for us mortals isn’t if Akronites

3-1 on Golden State’s home court, LeBron and his teammates faced “The Ordeal,” the eighth stage where the hero must experience some kind of “resurrection” to fulfill his destiny. That’s exactly what happened. Stage nine, the Reward. Only now has he entered “The Road Back.”

Turning the baby-faced, Akron-born Steph Curry — the NBA’s darling — into a mouthguard-chewing villain was a feat, but for LeBron James, it was just the beginning. Where this goes next depends on how well we embrace the story he’s telling. —


room. Besides, why spoil the surprise?) The Art Bomb Brigade applied their magic from June 13-24 and unlike gallery shows, this art is up for the long haul. Miller, whose work is inspired by vintage rock poster art, mythology and American superhero comics, is an Akron native who has sojourned around the world, including a printmaking residency in Belgium, where some of his work is in the permanent collection of the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, and “a year of creative focus and development” in France. Lucky art lovers have seen his work throughout the greater Akron and Cleveland area, around which he’s also dedicated his time and talents to arts youth programs.


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7




Because ICYMI shouldn’t describe your vote for the next President

Why ‘Ohio Picks the President’

You already know Ohio is a key battleground state. (The commercials gave it away, right?) Well, for the last 120 years, all but two Presidential candidates who won the Buckeye State have also won the general election. So why is that? Don’t ask us, ask the expert: Kyle Kondik, author of “The Bellwether: Why Ohio Picks the President”. He’s speaking in Akron on Thursday, July 14 from 6-7:30 pm at the Akron-Summit County Library’s main branch downtown. Afterwards, the Northeast Ohio native, who is managing editor of the nonpartisan “Sabato's Crystal Ball” at the University of Virginia Center for Politics, will do a little Q&A so you can find out whether all this applies to our current election cycle, too.

Akron school rebuilding plan running out of money as APS runs out of students In 2002, the $774 million plan to rebuild Akron’s 58 public schools made great sense but, as The Suburbanite’s Eric Poston reports,

State Republicans force prison watchdog out because she was being a watchdog

Kasich contradicts his 2014 self, signs local hiring ban — no one knows why

Joanna Saul, former head of the Correctional Institution Inspection Committee, told the Columbus Dispatch she was “forced to resign for political reasons” after voicing concerns

Early last year, two Republicans from rural Ohio complained their workforces suffered because bigger cities were allowed to require a percentage of the labor on publicly-funded

One plausible insight: the Ohio Contractors Association, which counts 500 companies among its members, supported the ban. Could it be that the same folks who get these multi-

construction projects come from the local municipality in charge. Like… us. The city of Akron, trying to help residents find work

million dollar contracts also have a few extra bones to throw at politicians so they can avoid hiring requirements? The pro-ban folks say the

and keep as much of the $1.4 billion for our enormous sewer project in town, passed a requirement in 2014 that 30 percent of the workers be local. That figure would have hit 50 percent by 2018. That makes sense because,

requirements make it difficult to hire qualified workers but local officials dispute that notion.

the plan is down to its last $25 million — $50 about the treatment of Ohio’s inmates (aka million when you count the state’s match, her job). She was given a choice: step down or which can only be used for high schools — with the legislature would abolish the committee, eight buildings to rebuild or remodel for a cost which was established in 1977. She stepped around $160 million. But the most surprising down. Republicans threatened to replace the statistic in that article may be that the school independent eight-member bipartisan CIIC, system has lost more than 10,000 students in which produced “hard-hitting” reports about the 14 years since the project began. medical and mental health care, violence and At least some of that decline can be attributed to America’s ongoing “baby recession” from 2007 to 2015, according to reports by the National Center for Health Statistics. During that time, 2.3 million fewer children were born than projected before the 2008 onset of

gangs in Ohio’s prisons, with a totally partisan group that would only inspect prisons with approval from the House speaker and Senate president. Her resignation means the CIIC is safe for now, which is a good thing since Ohio’s prison population is predicted to hit its all-time high in July, according to The Dispatch.

the economic recession, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal. Experts expect a

that name is familiar, it’s because Aramark

in the piggy bank to do the original plan? For now, officials are weighing options to move or combine certain high schools with existing community learning centers, the post-construction progeny of schools. Another big unanswered question here: Why have construction costs increased from $160/sq. ft. in 2012 to $243/sq. ft. now?

was chosen by former UA president Scott Scarborough to replace the university’s in-house food service.) Though former state senator Shirley Smith, a Democrat from Cleveland who was chairwoman of the CIIC, led the charge to remove Saul, another committee member, Bob Hagan (Youngstown - D), publicly suspected Gov. John Kasich’s involvement. Smith later chose to reinstate Saul, never offering an explanation about what why she’d been removed or brought back. Months later, Smith resigned from her state senate seat and stating, in a letter published by Cleveland. com, she was forced into it because that’s apparently how things are handled in Columbus.

Pictured left: North High School in Akron

Public School System


change of heart? “ is still trying to answer this question.” Because explaining the logic behind your actions is for losers.

(Photo courtesy of Michael Vadon)

as reported, local taxpayers are funding the project through rates that have increased by 255 percent over the last five years. While Mayor Dan Horrigan is seeking an exemption for Akron, according to the Akron Beacon Journal, Rep. Emilia Sykes, who’s fought the bill since it first appeared, suggested the only other alternative for the city might be a

This is the second time Saul has been forced “baby bounce” when the economy finally, to resign. The first time, the Associated Press fully rebounds, and that only complicates the noted, followed a report about food vendor question facing Akron Public Schools and Akron Aramark running out of meals, understaffing City Council. and maggots being found prep areas. (If How do you prepare for your hopeful best case scenario — a growing total city population like, say, Jason Segedy’s “Big Idea” for 250,000 by 2050 — while accounting for a decline in student population and too little money

project in the “Opportunity Corridor” — as well as 20 percent hiring goal for minority and disadvantaged businesses. So why the

lawsuit against the state. According to the Plain Dealer, Gov. Kasich himself supported local hiring requirements as recently as a 2014 trip to Cleveland, promising to meet the target 20 percent for residents of Cleveland wards near a roadway

Stat Box: What's Killing US?

Until you turn 25, your chances of dying by a firearm — whether by homicide or suicide — is relatively high. It’s a top five injury-related killer from ages 1 to 24. For context, drunk drivers killed fewer kids (209 total, ages 0 to 14) than firearms did (289, ages 10 to 14), most of them by suicide. After age 25, unintentional poisoning rockets to the top of the list for everyone through age 64. This spike, which only began in the 1990s, has been driven mostly by drug overdoses, particularly over the last 15 years by prescription opiates and heroin.

Firearm deaths vs. Unintentional poisoning Age: 10-14

Firearm 289

% = suicide 60%

Unintentional poisoning: 22

15-24 25-34 35-44

5,857 6,089 4,665

39% 46% 61%

3,492 9,334 9,116

45-54 55-64

5,085 4,448

78% 88%

11,009 7,013

Statistics gathered through National Violent Death Reporting System and reported in 2014 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which effectively stopped actual research into gun violence after a Republican congressman threatened in 1996 to strip $2.6 million from the CDC budget.

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |



In Brief





EPIDEMIC What is DeTerra and how does it work? You know that half-finished bottle of Percocet

effects on fish and other wildlife who depend upon pharmaceutical-laden water to survive. If you can’t get your hands on a DeTerra kit, you can take leftover meds to your local pharmacist, law-enforcement agency or health care provider, and they’ll use this stuff to dispose of it responsibly. Who will DeTerra help? Aside from keeping drugs out of our water supply, the hope is that DeTerra will help prevent people from taking drugs that aren’t theirs. Most importantly, local officials are looking at the potential for DeTerra to keep people from becoming addicted to opiates or from dying opioid-overdose related deaths. Heroin addicts often become addicted to pain pills before moving on to harder drugs. Too often, those painkillers are taken by youth from

hanging out in your medicine cabinet since your their parents’ medicine cabinets. And Fentanyl, which is 15 times stronger than heroin, has wisdom tooth extraction last month? Or the been showing up in toxicology reports from OD bottle of liquid Morphine and box of Fentanyl victims at an alarming rate. patches leftover from a recently deceased relative who was on pain management treatment? DeTerra is a substance used to deactivate those pharmaceuticals in order to protect public health and the environment. The DeTerra system includes a ziplock bag of activated carbon powder, to which you add unused pharmaceuticals and water and wait ten seconds. Then — Poof! They disappear. It’s like magic. Except it’s science. Why can’t we just throw leftover drugs in the garbage or flush them down the toilet? Because it’s bad for the environment, and potentially for public health. A wide array of pharmaceuticals including but not limited to pain killers, antibiotics, hormones,

by Amanda Sedlak-Hevsener Wolf Ledges Parkway is one of the more unusually named streets in the Akron area. It runs north to south, from East Exchange

look closely at the building, “M. Burkhardt Brewing,” a later version of the same company, is still in bricks on the side.)

Why is it important for Akron? Akron is in the middle of a huge opiate

Street on the University of Akron campus, to Interstate 76, after which its name changes to Bellows Street. At first glance, it seems like

However, over time, Wolf Run became more of a nuisance and less of a fun place to hang

epidemic. From 2013 to 2014, Ohio experienced an 18.9 percent increase in drug overdose deaths, with opioids being the main drug causing those deaths. Summit County

an ordinary road – there is a post office, a state license bureau, and several businesses. However, underneath the road is where things get interesting.

out, particularly as the need for more housing grew. By 1917, the city of Akron had enclosed Wolf Run with a series of pipes placed in a concrete bed in order to prevent flooding,

had 97 opioid overdose deaths in 2015 alone, according to the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office. One reason for the high rate of overdose is that drug dealers are cutting their

The name of the street comes from a natural rock formation that early Akronites named the Wolf Ledge, due to the many wolves that ran

additional land degradation and further pollution. And, although the sandstone outcroppings around the creek were quarried and used in several local buildings (including

products with Fentanyl with the intent to create a stronger drug. Heroin users then unwittingly use the drug like they

around it. There was a stream, aptly named Wolf Run (also called Wolf Creek), that over the course of many centuries carved out a

the Everett Building, located on the corner of South Main and West Market Streets), the entire ravine had to go. The city had it filled in

rocky outcropping and shallow cave system in the area. The Wolf Ledge ran roughly from what is now Spicer Street all of the way west to the Ohio and Erie Canal.

and then built houses on top of it.

would heroin, but they don’t have the tolerance for the Fentanyllaced drug. DeTerra can help keep excess Fentanyl off the streets and out of the hands of youth who might not realize the strength

anticonvulsants and mood stabilizers have been found in the water supply of 24 major metropolitan areas in the US, according to an investigation by

Why Is It Called Wolf Ledges Parkway?

the city, and the street: Wolf Ledges Parkway. The cave system was a popular gathering

the Associated Press published in 2008. While the effect on human health is still unknown

of the little patch they found in grandma’s medicine cabinet. And of course it will help prevent youth from becoming addicted to opiates in pill form, which could in turn keep them from

place for teenagers in mid-1800s, and a brewery even popped up in the area called Wolf Ledge Brewing. The building, located at 515 Grant Street, which held the nowdefunct brewery now houses the Akron Board

due to a lack of research on the subject, several studies around the world have shown negative

seeking out heroin when they run out of the leftover pills. - M. Sophie Hamad

of Education Maintenance facility. (If you

Good Month


All that remains of the Wolf Ledge are the memories, the notations in early histories of

// Amanda Sedlak-Hevener is a local historian and a graduate student at the University of Akron. Pictured above: The intersection of Wolf Ledges Parkway and East Thornton Street. (Photo courtesy of Amanda Sedlak-Hevener/The Devil Strip)

bad Month


Congratulations to Sandy Tirpak, who won a $10,000 front or backyard makeover courtesy of Keep Akron

Governor Kasich signed into law Ohio’s Medical Marijuana legislation, making Ohio the 25th state

Beautiful’s 13th annual Dreamscape Raffle, sponsored by SummaCare at Alexander park. Sandy Tirpak isn’t

to legalize it. But don’t worry, Mr. Reefer Madness, you won’t have to inhale any secondhand smoke.

the only one benefiting from the raffle, however. In addition to 1st, 2nd and 3rd runner up prizes, the real winner is Summit County, since the proceeds from the raffle fundraiser go toward planting and maintaining our 34 Flowerscape sites annually. A total 1,265 tickets sold raised $27, 350 for

One of the biggest drawbacks for those who have been fighting for medical marijuana is that smoking is still illegal. As is home cultivation. So you can only eat it or vape it, and you’ve got to get it from a licensed distributor. And since regulations for cultivation

the Flowerscapes.

and distribution likely won’t be in place until 2017 or early 2018, patients will have to purchase their medicinal Mary Jane in another state where it’s legal (Michigan, for instance) and bring it back to Ohio. Ohio residents will be able to get medical marijuana ID cards for 20 different medical conditions, including HIV/AIDS, cancer, post traumatic stress disorder, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and severe, chronic pain.


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


UA t

Facing a enrollm restruct to a rep accordin budget,

no layo about t The fina





UA trustees tap reserve fund to avoid more layoffs Facing a $20 million shortfall, caused largely by the anticipated 9-percent dip in undergrad enrollment, the Board of Trustees approved a $300 million budget that saves millions a year in restructured debt and covers the rest by dipping into the university’s reserve fund, according to a report by WKSU. While the university is taking about $6 million out of reserves this year, according to, officials actually took out more — $7 million — to cover last year’s budget, which wasn’t trying to compensate for an enrollment drop. In the short term, it means no layoffs at UA. Long term, there are plenty of hurdles to cross and questions to answer still about the “$60 million financial problem” touted by former UA President Scott Scarborough. The final budget will be ready in mid-September.

that faculty, staff, and students had never been. They were listening to *me* — an anonymous, inanimate, sarcastic object. I’m still amazed by this whole experience. But it’s really ironic

office with random people like the success coaches sitting there. The university needs to realize that students have complicated lives, and it should help them find child care or

and wrong that members of the actual UA community were silenced and ignored, but I wasn’t. Deans were afraid to speak out, but I

elder care (Adult Focus would be a big help with this). Doesn’t the university have a child care center? So invest more in that. Make it

could speak with impunity. What’s wrong with this picture?

affordable for students. Oh, goodness, what else? I think a lot of the staff that has been fired needs to be brought back, if they’ll come

TDS: We’ve all heard a lot about the drop in enrollment and the financial problems and transparency and communication, but from your view of campus, what are some of the overlooked problems that have to be addressed at UA?

back. The university is really hurting because it let such good people go. For example, I have heard that the IT department is woefully understaffed, and it’s causing a lot of problems. Just ask the faculty (refer to the first point about shared governance).

OJ: Oh, there are so many. Hire full-time tenure track faculty, and then actually involve

And for those administrators who may be reading this thinking that this all will cost money: trust me, not doing these things costs you much, much more.

When lauded ABJ columnist Bob Dyer is on top of his game, he produces jaw-dropping journalism, like 2014’s “Falling from Grace” series, which exposed allegations of sexual

on a humorous note. Answering my questions saved him some time, I guess. Chris, I truly appreciate that you are taking the time to hear what I think.

abuse at Grace Cathedral, or his 2013 column about the University of Akron’s offensively low

[Note: Personally I thought Dyer’s OJ Simpson

them in running the university. It’s not just communication — it’s shared governance. Trust

graduation rates for black students. When he’s not, he talks to inanimate objects. Or pretends to, as was the case with his “interview” with

joke was corny at best and in poor taste at worst, but what do I know? – Chris H.]

me, it’s an idea that’s just crazy enough to work. As it always has.

the Olive Jar, which had become a symbol for opponents of former UA President Scott

TDS: Of course, there were many more and many bigger problems at UA over the last

But there’s more. The university needs to really invest in helping students succeed. It


Scarborough. As he noted on Twitter, Dyer was not talking to THE Olive Jar but rather himself. That’s okay with the real-life human being

couple of years than the amount spent on a large, decorative olive jar. What was it about you that more or less made you the mascot for

needs more advisers (not “coaches”), and it needs the office of off-campus

OJ: Pay for your own stuff.

running those accounts. Imitation is the highest form of flattery. Plus, it lets us hear from the

that administration’s failures?

help students — it needs to be staffed. And it needs to

“real” Olive Jar, who will remain anonymous, as she rides off into social media retirement. Read the full interview online at

OJ: Because spending $556 for an olive jar is so ridiculous that it’s comical. You get a visual image of a glass jar filled with Spanish olives sitting in the president’s bedroom, and that’s just funny. Everyone was talking about the

really invest in and expand the Adult Focus program for non-traditional students — because who’s “traditional” anymore? It should bring

faking the interview with you?

olive jar. There were articles written about it. People joked about it. It was really a flashpoint.

back the Women’s Resource Center and the Multicultural

Olive Jar: He missed me! I’ve spent almost two years talking to people through social media, and I must have been doing something right,

So I thought, Wouldn’t it be funny if I had Facebook and Twitter pages? I thought, I bet people would follow me. I wonder what would

Center — really have these programs, not just have an

because I’ve picked up quite a few friends and followers. I did it by saying what I think. And I think he missed the opportunity to get to

happen… and a couple of hours from the time the Facebook page went up, the stories started coming out in the media, and the number of

know me, and I’m worth the effort of getting to know. That said, I have tried to use humor to get my point of view across, or just to get

friends I had exploded.

While many folks were shocked that Dr. Scott Scarborough, who was forced to resign as

It scared me a little at first, really. But I needed

people asking questions. So it’s appropriate, I suppose, that he tried to close the book on OJ

a voice because I had something to say. And ironically people were listening to me in a way

UA President, was rehired to teach classes, especially one in “Strategic Management” — short answer: it was stipulated in his generous contract — what we’re wondering is WHY he would want to stick around to do it? As a professor, he’ll “only” make $292,500 a year instead of the

The Devil Strip: What did Bob Dyer miss by


TDS: What words of advice would you offer the next president to occupy the home on Burning

housing to really be there to

The Unanswered Question $450,000 he made as president.

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


AGENDA the conversation about Northeast Ohio from LeBron and the Cavs to ...well, Trump stuff. A portion of the proceeds will benefit CANAPI’s

going? But yeah, it has definitely taken a toll on my fandom, but I mean, we've been in the offseason the whole time so far, so it's only gonna get exponentially worse come fall. But

important work, which includes testing, awareness and the Teen Pride Network, as well as an organic food pantry and housing

it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make, Chris. I'll be keeping up, at the very least, though. Believe that.

assistance for individuals living with HIV. You can get your tickets, while they still last, at

WHY IS ‘THE LIBERAL REDNECK’ COMING TO AKRON ANYWAY? Comedian Trae Crowder counters the RNC with his stereotype-busting stand-up by Chris Horne Photo courtesy of Jason Grindle Photography


few weeks ago, like a few million other folks, I found myself erupting in laughter watching videos about regressive transgender bathroom laws posted by “The Liberal Redneck,” who flipped the stereotypes, surprising folks who weren’t aware that an accent like that could be accompanied by hard core progressive politics and insightful logic.

Unbox Akron’s Roger Riddle suggested we see if Trae Crowder (aka - his real name) would do a show here. Trae said yes pretty quickly, and he’s bringing his wellRED Comedy buddies

And how will the wellRED Comedy Tour benefit the LGBTQ community in Akron? THE DEVIL STRIP: In a month, the Republican National Convention will bring a global spotlight to Northeast Ohio with the coronation

TC: Well, I've learned a LOT. More than I can even say, really. So much about the industry/

everything else you already had to do — you know, family, work, friends, football? Have you even been able to keep up with Tennessee's

business side of this all that I just had no idea about. The roles and necessity of different people, how the creative process works on

recruiting class or spring practices?

actual projects, just stuff like that. I'm still

TRAE CROWDER: Let me take those in order. Family is my #1 priority, and so far I think I'm

learning more every day, and will be for a long time. As to the second question, I'll be honest, this is all still so new and everything that I feel

doing a good job of balancing that with all of this. It will be a challenge, but my wife is fully on board, so I know we'll figure it out. As for work, well...this is my work now. I did have a

like this question will be much better answered after another few years. As of right now, the only thing that I can immediately think of that I would definitely do differently is I would have

day job when all this started, but not anymore. Which is crazy and kind of scary, but way way more thrilling than scary. My friends...most of

been better prepared for the onslaught of followers/attention at the beginning. I mean, that first video was on my personal Facebook

my best friends have families too, so we don't see each other all that much anyway, and keep in touch until we can all get together. This hasn't really changed that, and also they're all

page. My friends maxed out pretty immediately (I still can't add anyone), and it was just all out pandemonium for the first few weeks there. Now I don't think anyone is ever really ready for

so insanely excited and happy for me that they are just rolling with it.

some lunacy like this; that's just the nature of it. But still if I could go back, I would have tried to handle all that more smoothly, but even having said that: obviously it's all still worked out fairly well, haha.

Now to the important part. You are literally the first interviewer to have asked me about Tennessee football. This makes you my favorite interviewer. I read that and think "now see here's somebody that truly understands the struggle." Ain't gonna lie...I'm worried about

or are they still giving you shit to keep you humble? TC: Well, we're really good friends and have been, and we're all comics, so I mean....I don't

from the recent progress toward ensuring all

TDS: The next Game Change Conference,

Americans are treated equally. The LGBTQ community will continue to face the challenge of not being seen as deserving the very same rights provided to all other Americans. New

which is a part of the legacy left by the 2014 Gay Games in Akron, takes place this October. How has the conference helped advance CANAPI's efforts to make this community more

challenges would come from any new


appointment to the Supreme Court. It is my hope we will take seriously the implications of electing a President that is not willing to stand

RC: The Game Change Conference helps CANAPI empower an inclusive community by providing information on the unique needs of the LGBTQ community. The conference originally targeted social workers, educators,

TDS: As you've helped rally, in the wake of Orlando's mass shootings, the local LGBTQ community and its allies, how have you felt about the at-large response by people in the

and health care providers. In our third year we are expanding the focus to include business leaders and employers. Providing education and an environment for discussion on how to

Rebecca Callahan, CANAPI Executive

Akron area?

best support LGBTQ individuals is impactful advocacy. Fostering community awareness of

Director: If a president is elected who opposes marriage equality and

RC: I feel as if the local community’s response has been one of heartfelt support. It is wonderful to live in a city where the majority

the importance of supporting LGBT individuals as clients, customers, and employees helps influence who we are as a community.

holds mixed views on protecting LGBTQ Americans from

is accepting and supportive of the LGBTQ community. The Akron community, like many across the nation, is weary of the hate.

TDS: On July 21, you're hosting the organization's first "Farm to Cocktails" event

the LGBTQ community face if Trump is elected?

discrimination, we will take a large step back

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

CH: Have your wellRED tourmates, Drew and Corey, conceded you're the alpha dog -- giving you the requisite treatment reserved for stars --

up for the rights all citizens of the United States.

of Donald Trump, who opposes restrictive transgender bathroom laws but also opposes marriage equality. What new challenges would


CHRIS HORNE: How are you juggling the responsibilities of this sudden recognition with the new gigs all over the country and

my impending schedule for this fall and what Drew Morgan and Corey Ryan Forrester. (Maybe it's gonna mean for my football-watching. some surprise guests too?) We set the show for Especially considering, in the words of a true Vols fan......this is our year. But it's true though! Saturday, July 16, just ahead of the Republican No, really! This is the year! Where's everybody National Convention which will no doubt shift


CH: What have you learned so far in this process? Is there anything you wish you knew in the beginning that you know now?

at Crown Point Ecology Center, who have


agenda care what happens, there will never, EVER come

Southerners "come out" as liberal, progressive

a time where we stop giving each other shit. In fact, after the MSNBC interview aired, one of the very first texts I got was from Drew, and it

and/or atheist. How much of an impact do you think that changing the perception of "Red State" voters could have on the politics in

just said, "You're still trash."

the South?

Now, having said that, they know what time it is. And they're happy for me, just like all of my

TC: That has been one of the most encouraging parts of all this: hearing from other

friends are. So yes, they are on board with me being the "alpha dog" at the moment because of how everything has played out, and I would

southerners who are kind of "coming out" now. I love that. But now I don't know how much of a real impact it will have on the politics

be the same if it had happened to one of them instead. But the shit-talking will never cease. Never.

of the Red States any time soon, because I would wager that most of these people have been voting for the left this whole time, they just haven't talked about it. As long as

CH: One of the big positives from your viral videos seems to be you've helped some

politicians can continue to win elections by (continued on page 45)




been your partners on the Organic Food Pantry program. Some folks might be surprised by

deserves the opportunity to be healthy.

CANAPI's nutrition program, so can you explain why this has been a vital part of your mission?

TDS: When you're introducing CANAPI to someone new, what's the most important thing for you to let them know about what you do?

RC: Our Nutrition Program is an important element of our efforts to provide quality

RC: I talk often to community members about

services to those living with HIV. Many individuals and families are struggling with making food dollars stretch. An individual living with HIV must receive nutrient rich foods in a balanced diet in order to get the most

what CANAPI does and the importance of our vision. Our vision is to empower an inclusive community through education, outreach and awareness while eliminating stigma and HIV transmission. We provide housing, nutrition

out of medications that work to reduce their

assistance and linkage to resources to the

viral load and maintain health. At CANAPI our food pantry is unique in that fresh organic proteins, fruits, vegetables, and dairy are provided twice monthly to qualifying individuals

individuals living with HIV; free HIV testing and education to anyone in Summit and Portage County; and advocate for the LGBTQ community through education, programming

and families. Organic foods provide nutrients without harmful chemicals, hormones, and preservatives. Crown Point Ecology Center

and civic action. I think the most important thing for someone to know about CANAPI is that our staff and Board of Directors is not only

partners with us by donating a half a food share passionate about helping our community but during their growing season. As a community also improving our community. partner in HIV services, Equitas Health is a main source of referrals and encouragement to our shared clients. At CANAPI we believe everyone


Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |





Digging Here’s what our some of our staff and contributors are currently digging .

Sophie Hamad

Andrew Leask

Sylvan Esso. All things Sylvan Esso. Amelia’s shoes are always incredible. I wish they would come play a show in Akron. In the meantime, I can’t stop listening to any versions

After a few false starts (what, snow in May?!), the warm weather is finally, definitely — well, probably —here to stay. And that means I am now digging, and regularly digging into,

of their songs--Tiny Desk Concert, rooftop performances, live shows on YouTube. Their self-titled debut album is amazing, but I think my favorite song they’ve done is called “Jaime’s Song” from Radiolab’s “Elements.”

Handel’s Ice Cream. Handel’s serves heaping mounds of cold nirvana perched atop the type of sugar cone you can never get the wrapper completely off of. My favorite flavor? It’s a tossup between the mint chocolate chip and the coconut cream pie. Delicious!

Ilenia Pezzaniti

Christina Dearing

GIRLS. Lena Dunham created and stars in the show. It's a comedy-drama following the lives of four mid-twenties women living in New

doTERRA International. I am an independent Wellness Advocate for this networking company. I am in love with the purity of their

York City (and no, not like Sex and The City, although there is a lot of sex and well, the main character is a writer...). You see a lot of

Essential Oils and I use them daily as well as share them. I also use their bath and body products. I lost twenty-five pounds with the

normal and relatable women's naked bodies, a proclamation in itself. There's tons of twists and turns---like in real life, life happens and is

supplements. It is great way for an individual to take back control over their health and well being.

constantly happening. It's pretty dang hilarious and mind opening. It's also reassuring in that mid-twenties type of way- a time when you're

Pictured left to right: Photo of Sylvan Esso courtesy

August 5-6

Glendale Cemetery

August 12-13 Goodyear Metro Park

Performances at 8:45 P.M. Interactive children’s programs by The University of Akron Dance Institute at 7:45 P.M. FREE ADMISSION Enjoy The Akron Symphony on Sunday August 7 at Glendale Cemetery and Sunday August 14 at Goodyear Metro Park. Concerts start at 7:30 P.M. FREE ADMISSION

just trying to figure it out and end up "fucking up" a lot but that's not necessarily a bad thing, because you're just getting more in tune with

of Sylvan Esso; GIRLS courtesy of HBO; Handel’s ice cream photo courtesy of Handel’s; doTERRA International.

the person you really are and the life you really want for yourself.

WWW.THEDEVILSTRIP.COM HP_4.876x6.5_DevilStrip.August.indd 1

6/20/16 12:04 PM



Hi, Neighbor! SVETLA MORRISON Occupation: Hometown: Home Now: Contact:

Photographer/creator/educator A small town in Bulgaria Cuyahoga Falls

WHAT’S YOUR BIG IDEA? Hi, Neighbor! is a project that aims to look beyond (and despite) the facts we could find

the communication between Akron’s neighborhoods.

wish to be treated," "Be considerate of other people's needs," "Everyone is somebody's friend, family, teacher---be careful what your

about each other online, inviting you to extend your knowledge for the people who inhabit the same living area as you to a closer, more personal level, more so as humans rather than

Since this issue is centered around self-portraits, we thought it would be fun to ask Svetla to participate in her own project. Here are her responses.

attitude charge their worlds with."

titles and facts. NAME: Svetla Ganeva-Morrison The project portraits the “soul” of Akron by featuring a diverse group of participants from


every Akron neighborhood.

A professional observer, passionate explorer of all things humane, tripoholic, adventurer, believer.

I take a photo of each participant in their comfortable environment. Each photo is featured along with four questions I have asked every participant to answer: name; how they perceive themselves (beyond social acknowledgement and titles); and two pieces of advice: one which they’d been given that means a lot to them, and another they wish they’d been given.

ADVICE YOU'VE BEEN GIVEN THAT STICKS OUT TO YOU: I have been fortunate to have my childhood and adolescent years full of wise people who were caring enough for my well being to share their life experience with me. But what sticks out the most from all the amazing advice I was showered with could sum up "It's all about the attitude."

following months working together, my admiration for his skills to balance dreams Of course all these words sound great and most with reality and stay away from perfection of us identify with their importance. Others may discouraging and overwhelming him only disregard them with apathy, but either way, if you attempt to live up to their meaning, you quickly discover it's not as easy as it sounds.

grew bigger. Because indeed, ‘Done’ is better than ‘Perfect.’ And so I slowly realized, launching a perfected

ADVICE YOU WISH YOU WERE GIVEN: I really wish somebody along the way had pulled me aside and asked me, "Hey, has it

version of an idea is an oxymoron, because perfection is not a constant. It's not a final, and definitely not the first phase of a creation, but

occurred to you that ‘Done’ is better than ‘Perfect’?"

rather is the very fabric of our evolving vision influenced by the things we encounter on daily basis. We are never the same, and so can't be our state of perfection. And the thought of this was so liberating. But it took me awhile to see it.

I've struggled for years, ending up not landing tons of ideas, because they were not perfected.

Both my mom and my grandma used to often say to me, "No one shoots an arrow towards

When I moved to the States (almost 8 years ago), I saw great examples of this much more realistic approach in the face of quite a few great women I met through my first working place, The International Institute of Akron. Dylanna Jackson, Rebecca Jenkins and Natalya Mutareva just to name a few.

community ultimately translating to The Wisdom of Akron.

a smiling face." And this great advice kept reoccurring in their various lessons: "Be nice to

However, probably the most distinct example

I also hope that this project will benefit

people, it doesn't cost you anything," "Treat others with the same respect with which you

of this idea I had the opportunity to observe closely through Chris Horne venturing the job

By asking the participants to share their advice (one of the most altruistic ways of communication), I aim to capture the spirit of understanding, acceptance and compassionate

of a publisher of The Devil Strip magazine. I joined helping Chris from the very beginning of the magazine in print, and through the

// Photo of Svetla Morrison by Svetla Morrison.

You can follow Svetla Morrison's

Hi, Neighbor! project on her facebook and instagram pages /@svetla_morrison_fotografy and also check it on her website,

United Way of Summit County

VOLUNTEERS PLAY A VITAL ROLE IN UNITED WAY’S WORK TO MAKE OUR COMMUNITY STRONGER. 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


JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


Your news feed is full of parenting advice.

So are our pediatricians. To find a pediatrician near you, visit WWW.THEDEVILSTRIP.COM

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4/8/16 5:39 PM

the arts



SUMMIT ARTSPACE An Akron patron of the arts views work in the gallery at

Summit Artspace during the 2016 Arts Alive! fundraiser in June. (Photo: Shane Wynn)


JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

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the arts






The palette:

å Shakespeare: The Tempest July 1-3, 7-10, 14-16 Stan Hywet, 7:30pm-10pm The Ohio Shakespeare Festival presents The Tempest, a Shakespearean comedy, in the Lagoon area of Stan Hywet. Join your fellow Akronites under the evening sky as you watch local actors perform this classic tale.

ç School of Rock Summer Camp Every Thursday in July at Akron Art Museum Join the Akron Art Museum for a School of Rock Summer Camp. Participants get the chance to create rock and roll inspired album covers, posters and t-shirts. This is a childfocused event. Admission is $40 for a member’s child and $60 for a non-member’s child.

é ë

Our picks for arts events happening in July by Bronlynn Thurman

é Second Saturday Curator Art Talk: Pulp

ê HEATHERS The Musical

this classic musical directed by Jack Ballentyne.

July 22-24 at Akron Civic Theatre

Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for students.

July 9 at Akron Art Museum, 1:30pm

The Millennial Theatre Company brings Akron, HEATHERS The Musical, a show based on the 1989 teen comedy by the same name. A clique of mean girls attempt to ruin the good name of a fellow student, so she teams up with a bad

The Akron Art Museum’s monthly curator art talk is back to discuss Pup, the photography exhibit featuring works from Richard Misrach, Aaron Siskind and Tom Young. Assistant Curator Elizabeth Carney will cover the underlying themes which include violence and darkness. Free with gallery admission of $10.

è Dr. Sketchy’s Sweet Sensations July 13 at Jilly’s Music Room, 7:30pm Join Dr. Sketchy’s Akron for a night of drinks, sweets, and drawing. They are back again for their monthly drawing session at Jilly’s Music Room with model Melody Mayhem. Admission is $10.

boy to put them down, permanently. Tickets are $15.

í Akron Arts Expo July 23-24 at Hardesty Park This year’s 37th annual Akron Arts Expo is sure to be a treat. The expo is a nationally recognized juried fine arts and craft show with over 160 artist featured. It’s free and fun for the whole family. See story on PAGE 15.

ë Beauty and the Beast Tallmadge High School July 22, 23, 29, 30 - 7pm; July 24 - 2pm The Dynamics Community Theatre of Tallmadge presents Beauty and the Beast. Time is running out, and the Beast has yet to learn how to love and be loved. Will the young Belle help him

Pictured above (clockwise from top left): School of Rock Summer Camp courtesy of Akron Art Museum; Dr. Sketchy’s Akron, Photo courtesy of Dr. Sketchy’s Akron; Harry Callahan print at PULP courtesy of the Akron Art Museum; The Tempest, Photo courtesy of Stan Hywet; HEATHERS photo courtesy of Akron Civic Theatre.

break the spell that holds him? Come check out

My Time With Mark A tour of Myopia

words and photos by Bronlynn Thurman

“A candy cigarette doesn’t lead to oxycontin, but everything else does...probably.”

home in Northeast Ohio. The exhibit was split into two. MOCA contains his history, his work with DEVO, and the sound machines, while the

His humor is infectious. Bright eyes and a kind

Akron Art Museum contains most of his visual

smile, Mark Mothersbaugh is the kind of person work and the stunning postcard collection that you could spend hours being around and in spans over 30,000 cards. fact, I did. In late May, I had the pleasure of going on a private tour that Mothersbaugh led Mark talked briefly about his work, but instead

the stories reveal everything that everyone would ever need to know about his work and more.

of his largest exhibit, Myopia. Curated by Adam Lehman and organized by

chose to tell stories which allowed us a peek into his life more so than any explanation could have. As an artist myself, I knew this feeling

My favorite moment was on the bus traveling from Cleveland to Akron. It became even more apparent that this was a man who has never

the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, Myopia is Mothersbaugh’s life’s work laid out for all to see. A partnership between the Akron

well. There are times when you can not even explain to yourself why you do what you do. You just do it and move on. It relieves the

lost the child within. He cracked jokes, poked people with a candy cigarette, smiled and laughed with us.

Art Museum and Museum of Contemporary Art burdens of daily life, the stress of the crowds, (MOCA) in Cleveland brought Mark back to his the emotions that threaten to billow over. But


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

(continued on page 17)


Art Scene >>

the arts

Held on June 15th at Summit ArtSpace, Arts Alive! was a resounding success! Photos courtesy of Shane Wynn.

Dance Party & Art Show was held on June 18th to celebrate Land of Plenty turning 3! Photos courtesy of M. Sophie Hamad.

FREE PUBLIC CELEBRATION 2 — 9 pm Family Programming Hands-on art activities for all ages Garden-themed interactive area Garden tours by Akron Garden Club and Akron Art Museum Docents

Verb Ballets Children’s Program “Shape Imagination” • 2 pm



The Del Rios • 6 pm Shivering Timbers • 7 pm Wesley Bright • 8 pm

One South High I Akron, OH 44308 I

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

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the arts


Photos of Art Bomb Brigade by Michelle DeShon


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


the arts

FLEX embracing community art to promote healing

Your Season, Your Schedule

How Western Reserve Hospital is helping local artists and the community. by Jason Clevenger Although art may not be able to directly cure disease or heal the sick, it can elevate moods, make anxiety or pain easier to bear and play a significant role in helping someone recover and heal from illness or injury.

assists in the healing process. This project will also provide local artists the opportunity to exhibit their artwork to the community. On Aug. 2, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm, members of the community are cordially invited to

That's why Western Reserve Hospital has partnered with Collide: Cuyahoga Falls and ArtsNow of Summit County to provide inspiring artwork from the local creative community. The

join Western Reserve Hospital, Collide and ArtsNow at the first Western Reserve Hospital art showcase. Guests will enjoy the curated collection from local visual artists, live music

curated collection will be displayed in Western Reserve Hospital's oncology rooms on an

by the Found Sounds Steelpan Duo and complimentary drinks and heavy appetizers.

eight- to 10-week rotation. Afterwards, it will appear in an open exhibit in the public access community gallery area, located in one of the hospital's main hallways.

Guests should RSVP for this FREE EVENT by July 26 through For more information, contact Kathy Romito at (330) 971-7408 or

“Chemotherapy and other infusion treatments take some time, and for patients undergoing those treatments in the oncology department, we wanted to make their experience more pleasant," said Kathy Romito, community relations manager at Western Reserve Hospital. "By housing a rotating collection of artwork, we're able to provide these patients with not only a nice change of scenery, but also motivating, hope-inspiring pieces of art that can help them heal emotionally while they’re being treated physically."

If you are interested in participating in the curated art showcase, the first deadline for submission is July 10, with subsequent submission dates every eight to 10 weeks after that. The first installation will be the end of July. Art may be for sale, and the artist(s) will receive the full payment for their sale. Any individuals interested in purchasing any of the artwork on display can contact the artists directly. For questions on the submittal process and

This partnership’s goal is to enhance the

artists’ credentials criteria, please contact

environment for the oncology patients. Exposing them to the healing power of art provides the patients with positive energy that

Project Curator Jessica Lofthus at

(continued from page 14) Even with the passing of his father, General Boy, only a few short days before, he was warm and welcoming albeit a bit exhausted looking. At one moment, when he was looking a bit trapped in a conversation, I walked over to him. He held my hand tightly and I nervously asked for a photograph. The end result is me trying to not fall apart in a fit of laughter as he looks on curiously.


Pictured right: Boogie Boy: Devo. Photo courtesy of Bronlynn Thurmann

If you have a chance, go see Myopia because it will truly add color to your life. // Bronlynn, the awkward elf, is trying to draw inspiration from as

many artists as she can.

Christopher Wilkins Music Director

Afraid of commitment but still like to save? Akron Symphony’s Flex Subscription has you covered. Purchase four tickets or more and save $5 per ticket to create your own season subscription. Use them all at once, or one at a time - it’s up to you! Cirque de la Symphonie · Stravinsky The Firebird · Beethoven Symphony No. 9 · Holst The Planets · Dvorák ˇ Symphony No. 9 · and much, much more! Flex Subscription tickets start at $15 each 330·535·8131

the arts

For the Love of

Poetry and Science

Summit Artspace hosts poetry reading with Ohio poet laureate Amit Majmudar words and photos by Noor Hindi Bringing together poetry and science lovers into one room, Summit Artspace in

out the keys from my jeans and do / my best Midwestern grin. / A O’Hare, at Atlanta, at Dallas/Fort Worth, / it happens every trip, / at

Akron hosted poet and diagnostic nuclear radiologist Amit Majmudar on Friday, May 20.

LaGuardia, Logan, and Washington Dulles, / the customary strip” (lines 3-8). The poem

Majmudar (pictured above) shared work from his new collection "Dothead." As the first poet laureate of Ohio, it was an honor to be listening to Majmudar’s work.

and use of unique images comes through: “Lunch was after / World History; that was India – myths, / caste systems, suttee, all the Greatest Hits” (“Dothead,” lines 12-14). Beyond the humor, this poem makes a powerful statement regarding the struggles of growing up cross culturally. And, his theatrical reading style drew the audience in and kept them engaged.

Visitors to the newly renovated Acme Fresh Market at 1835 W Market St., which had its grand reopening last month, may be surprised

In addition to Majmudar, Summit Artspace also brought in young poets Ileana Horattas and

to discover some colorful additions to the store peeking out from between the aisles.

University (NEOMED) where he is a graduate of and both recently won the 2016 William Carlos Williams Poetry Competition, a contest that

imagery from the Hindu tradition, as well as the religion of Islam. From the very first poem of the collection, “Dothead,” Majmudar’s humor

Majmudar has also won. Horattas shared her poem “The Lilacs” and Azem shared her poem “Sweeter Than A Watermelon.” Overall, the event was a great collaboration

the poem, I didn’t hear the amusing voice of Majmudar, but when he read it, many in the room grinned at the unique play on language and the philosophical conversation the poem engages without taking itself too seriously.

between the science and the arts. Being able to see the excellent work of local Akronites at Summit Artspace, as well as hear fabulous poetry from three scientifically-inclined individuals was a great experience.

Majmudar’s science and medical background influences much of his work, and he even admitted at the reading that he has a love of form poems for this reason. The use of

Aside from the range of topics and styles you will find in "Dothead," I think readers will enjoy Majmudar’s commentary about immigration

Follow Majmudar by visiting his website

the sestina form in the poem “The Waltz Of Descartes and Mohammed” is impressive:

and what it’s like to be a minority. One of my favorite poems in this collection is “T.S.A,”

“There is / No God / But God. / I think / Therefore / I am” (lines 1-6). On first read of

which tells about the speaker’s experience of being tagged at airports. It reads: “I dig


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

by Andrew Leask

“Immigration and Naturalization” also features the same theme.

Reem Azem. Both poets, Horattas and Azem, have much in common with Majmudar. Both are currently attending Northeast Ohio Medical

Drawing on his experiences of growing up as an Indian-American, "Dothead" features

Art Show in Aisle 5

// For more poetic badassery, check out The Nervous Poodle Poet’s blog at Then go write some poems, you poet, you.

The remodeled store boasts a tile installation — titled “Pixie Dust” — by Julia Vandervoort adorning the foyer floor. Diana Pribojan’s “Our Neighborhood,” a series of paintings inspired by the homes surrounding the supermarket hangs above the produce section. The new dining area above the entrance is home to a piece by Neil Sapienza, Associate Dean of the University of Akron’s Buchtel College. And finally, “10 Trees,” by Jean Blackburn spans the far wall of the supermarket. It’s no secret that we at The Devil Strip have a soft spot in our hearts for art that pops up in unexpected places. Next time you pick up the ingredients for your weekday dinner, take a moment to appreciate the work of these local artists. // Andrew Leask is fond of classic movies and Broadway musicals. He writes fiction in the company of his wife Amy and their two cats, Monty and Nigella.


Photo courtesy of Alison Caplan

the arts Think your living room isn’t classy enough for museum-quality art? Think again.

le 5

The Akron Art Museum, along with the main branch

When a piece is rented, it will leave the library in a padded bag. Similarly, all pieces will be behind glass and framed. Brackets will already be installed for easy hanging, Caplan said. In the three weeks a piece is

of the Akron-Summit County Public Library, has plans to bring art into the homes of anyone with a library card. As a Knight Arts Challenge winner, the museum

out, library officials will check in with the renters to make sure everything is OK and remind them of the due dates. If the piece is returned late, there will be a

is in the process of raising $67,200 to match the Knight Foundation grant and get the ball rolling.

fine, just like a library book.

Alison Caplan, the museum’s director of education,

As inspiration for this project, Caplan looked at other cities performing a similar rental program, such as

said with the grant money and matching funds, the museum will build a new collection that can be rented for three weeks at a time if a person has a

Oberlin, Ohio, and a community in Pennsylvania. Caplan actually attended Oberlin College and took part in the rental program while she was there.

library card. “We plan to form a committee and work with them

resh ad its rprised he les.

ation rvoort

’s “Our spired rket new to a of the nd pans

have a up in up the ke a e

“Every semester, you could rent out two pieces of work for $5,” Caplan said. “It really changed my

to build a collection of art from local and international life.”

Art Rental on the Cheap How the Akron Art Museum is putting art in the homes of anyone with a library card by Megan Combs

artists,” Caplan said. “Local artists could donate to the collection and we could pay regional artists a small stipend to create a piece for the collection.” Let’s get one thing clear: You aren’t renting art from the actual museum, Caplan said. So don’t plan on taking home one of Mark Mothersbaugh’s Roli Polis

To raise the matching funds, Caplan is working on writing grants and plans to launch a Kickstarter in the fall. More information on that is coming. In the meantime, anyone interested in donating can make a gift to the museum and ask that it go to this project.

any time soon. But, if the museum commissions Mothersbaugh to create a piece for the collection, your home could still boast an iconic postcard or

For future Knight Arts applicants, Caplan has this advice: “The cool thing about the challenge is that all they want is an idea, not a budget or anything like

drawing in your living room.

that. So don’t limit yourself by what you think people want in the community. Find out what they need and be as creative as possible.”

“It doesn’t have to be the Mona Lisa,” Caplan said. “We’re all under this impression that you have to be affluent to own art, and that’s not true. We want the community to think about art in new ways.”

// Megan can’t wait to swap out the art in her home on a regular basis.



ny of his



ot only is photographer Shane Wynn finding beauty in neglected spaces throughout Akron, but her Knight Arts project also features empowered women

“My project is my unique solution born out of marrying two lists I constantly create and update. One includes civic problems I identify and feel passionate about” Wynn said. “The other list includes creative ideas and visual concepts

“Although there is an overabundance of amazing women to choose from in finding subjects for my series, they do not all necessarily feel comfortable emoting this in a photograph so I've had to really refine my search to find the

through a series of portraits. The

I would like to execute. I find my best ideas

right subjects who can visually convey their

project, which is called #overlooked, attempts to show people the magic behind many of these underused spaces, while also highlighting the strong work of Akron women.

occur when these lists overlap and an organic marriage is born that melds a passion with a visual concept.”

inward qualities,” Wynn said.

been successful. She also mentions the gen-

the project. Second, she advises people to not

“My project simultaneously visits the topics of inclusivity for women and visits the question of the way we utilize the resource of our his-

erous support of Torchbearers of Akron, who matched the Knight grant and helped Wynn identify empowered women in Akron.

hold back on outsourcing parts of the projects that may not correlate with the best of their strengths.

toric spaces,” Wynn said. “My intention is to not draw a conclusion

“This collaboration has enriched the connection between the arts and young professionals in

Overall, she says the experience has taught her to “think backwards” and identify how

but rather to start a conversation and build momentum behind these often overlooked recourses.”

Akron and created an opportunity to collaborate on an idea,” Wynn said.

a creative idea can align with a need in the community.

Pictured left: Cristina González Alcalá. Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn


Shane Wynn’s project sparks conversation about empowered Akron women and underused Akron spaces by Noor Hindi


So far, through Wynn’s hard work and the beautiful images she’s captured, the project has

Despite these two challenges, Wynn has some great advice to offer future grant winners. For one, she says that grant winners should budget correctly for all the time it will take to set up

By capturing the energy and spirit of these locations, Wynn is

Wynn also thanks the Downtown Akron Partnership for helping her get into some of the spaces because “it can be hard to find the owners and then secure permission.” She also mentioned that “verbally communicating [her] concept has been received with some confusion

showing that these spaces could be to property owners who don’t quite understand potential homes for unique ideas. why [she] wants to photograph a space in such By the same token, the project is disrepair.” also revealing the talented women behind much of the growth taking Another challenge Wynn has faced is finding place in Akron right now. the right subjects for the series.

mere age of 16.

Pictured above: Shane Wynn and the Knight Foundation. Photo Courtesy of Knight Foundation // After Noor’s camera died from a tragic accident involving a toilet, her photography career ended at the mere age of 16.

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


Art News Brief

the arts work with the community. Together, their paintings have also been showcased at the Weathervane Playhouse Gallery, Artsy Mart,

glass windows to exquisite vases and other

Highland Square Art festivals and more. Dara primarily paints on canvas, but at the Expo you can expect to see some of her work translated

every Akron Arts Expo since its second year. This

into clothing and jewelry as well. (Photo courtesy of Dara Harper.)

decorative art. Bob has been making glass in Akron for 40 years, and has been featured at year, he will be bringing out some older work— glasswork in Tiffany style, Art Nouveau, and Victorian styles— for a retro show reflecting his inspiring artwork over the years. (Photo courtesy


of Bob Pozarski.)

On July 23 and 24, Akronites will have the


opportunity to discover local talent at the Akron Arts Expo. Located in Hardesty Park, the event will provide a range of activities such

After graduating with a degree in biological sciences, Brandon Spannbauer bought himself his first DSLR camera, the Nikon d40. Since then, he has found a way to express himself

by Melanie Anderson

New Chorus Director and New Partnerships for ASO The Akron Symphony Orchestra is pleased to welcome Marie Bucoy-Calavan as the Akron Symphony Chorus Director. BucoyCalavan succeeds Maria Sensi Sellner, who stepped down at the close of the 2015-2016 season. Bucoy-Calavan will prepare the Akron Symphony Chorus for four performances with the Akron Symphony and conduct one stand-alone chorus concert in the 20162017 season. Choral highlights of the season include Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Mendelssohn’s Elijah. ASO is also excited about new partnerships for the 2016-2017 season. Kicking off on Saturday, September 24, 2016, it is a season of unprecedented community collaboration as the ASO partners with organizations,

as the opportunity to sample food from local restaurants and food trucks, wine tasting and a silent auction. But let’s not forget the roughly 160 artists from the Akron area who will be

not only through simple photography, but also through unleashing the drama of his photos by creatively intensifying them with photo editing software. He seeks to find a balance

showcasing their work all weekend. The Akron Arts Expo has been celebrating local talent for 37 years now, and this year it will feature a range of long-established artists as well as new faces in the local art scene. Attendees can expect to enjoy a wide variety of artwork, from paintings to stained glass artwork, photography, and sculpture. Here’s a sneak peek at just some of the artists who will be there.

artists, and children throughout Akron. A collaborative approach to programming is

DIANE L. JOHNSON Diane Johnson comes from a family of artists and has continued the tradition in her own vibrant and expressive work. Her work, most of which is expressed through acrylics on

in enhancing the image digitally while also allowing restraint to keep the viewer grounded in reality. Brandon believes that "each image should tell a story or evoke an emotion in your viewer to be powerful and memorable," and he follows this mission in capturing and enhancing the beauty of the Akron area through the photographic lens. (Photo courtesy of Brandon

Spannbauer.) canvas, is a blend of abstract and figurative art, distinguishable by bold, bright hues and random layered patterns in the backgrounds. Diane finds inspiration in observing and interpreting the mundane things in life, turning them into colorful expressions of art through her own imagination and skill. She has displayed her work alongside her daughter Dara

Harper at many local events, and is currently featured at the Margaret Clark Morgan

not unusual for the orchestra, but this season takes that approach to a completely new level, with nearly every concert featuring meaningful—and often multi-layered—artistic

Foundation exhibit "Celebrating Creativity," an exhibit which features Akron Art Prize entries of 2015. (Photo courtesy of Diane L. Johnson.)

collaborations. Pictured above: Marie Bucoy-


Calavan, photo by Dennis Roliff; Akron Symphony

For Kristina Malcolm, metalsmithing is both a

Orchestra, photo courtesy of Knight Foundation

profession and a driving passion. Kristina uses historical, hand-building techniques to create personal and exquisite works, whether it is exquisitely unique sterling silver jewelry or a

Akron Art Museum to Begin Construction of New Civic Commons

large-scale commissioned community sculpture in Green. She looks for the quiet and beautiful

The Akron Art Museum is enlivening the landscape of the city—both literally and culturally—with the creation of the Bud and Susie Rogers Garden in July 2015. The art


museum will manage and program the space, however, the garden will be open to the public and available to visitors for a range of creative activities, such as a trailhead for bicyclists, a

Inspired by her artistic parents, Dara Harper, a

everyday moments in nature that bring her peace and works to translate that feeling into her art and to encourage people to seek beauty in the world. Besides creating custom-made

teacher at Emmanuel Christian Academy and mother of five, still finds time to express her

work, she also occasionally writes and lectures on her art, giving private lessons and sometimes

heart through art. Dara's paintings are bold, colorful and expressive. She creates her own block prints to layer her work, and often uses text (generally Bible verses or thoughts from

teaching part-time at Folk Hall at the University of Akron. To Kristina, art "is defined by the passion and love you put into something."

picnic and play space for families, an outdoor space for yoga or even an exploration space for urban naturalists. The garden has been made possible by a lead gift from Rick and Alita Rogers, and will be named in honor of Rick Rogers’ parents, longtime community volunteers and museum supporters, Bruce “Bud” Rogers and his wife, Suzanne “Susie” Rogers. The garden is expected to open by spring 2016.

her art journal) as an additional layer to her paintings. Dara's mother, Diane L. Johnson, is also an artist, and mother and daughter have partnered together to found Art Only Boutique, an outlet through which they can share their

BOB POZARSKI Bob Pozarski sees the world through light and color. He creates blown glass and stained glass

(Photo courtesy of Kristina L. Malcolm.)

art through a process which includes fusing and blowing and then beveling the glass into lens and prism shapes to acquire striking

// Melanie is an aspiring writer and an English major

optical effects. His work ranges from stained

discover all that Akron has to offer.

for life. Having only lived in the Akron area for two years, she is excited to write for the Devil Strip and


the arts

The [Self] Portraits of Akron Going pro in the Selfie Age Photos by Shane Wynn One of the great joys of doing something like The Devil Strip is the license to steal. I've habitually snagged the alt-mags and daily papers of every city I've visited since I was 18, incorporating many of my favorite ideas into this magazine you now hold. But the inspiration for this six-page spread was brought to me by one of our new columnists, Steve van Auken, who writes "The Trouble with Old People." He came to our office with an armload of old "roto magazines," mostly copies of "Beacon," the ABJ's Sunday magazine. I was like a kid in a candy shop, flipping through these pages. I saw in them a similar editorial vision for what I hope to do with this magazine: provide both a mirror for the area's creative side and a platform from which Akron's creative voices can be heard. Unfortunately, "Beacon Magazine" was shut down (for a second time) in 2000 to save money, according to But one of the features they ran, in 1981, was too cool not to try. They set up a backdrop and lighting in the Summit Mall then gave people the remote so they could snap their own portraits. I wondered what that would look like in the post-selfie era when we're all accustomed to turning the lens on ourselves. Fortunately, our friend and award-winning photographer Shane Wynn was wayyy on-board with the plan to apply her skills, which she's used to take portraits of former Mayor Don Plusquellic, soul-singing beekeeper Wesley Bright and a whole series of Akron's overlooked women for a Knight-funded art project you can read more about on page 16. I think the results are pretty amazing. We set up at an Akron RubberDucks game during their Friday night "Akronites Unite" promotion. I couldn't stop smiling as we watched folks loosen up and enjoy themselves, clicking away. [You can see all the shots on our website at] Finally, our BIG THANKS to Christina Urycki, the whole RubberDucks crew and their fans for making this possible, and thank you to our squad -- Sophie, Riddle and Christina -for running the show. Flip through these photos and tell me you don't love Akron just a little more. I know we do. Thanks,



Newton Falls

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


the arts

Tom Ball

Marie Curry & Brant Lee

Maddy Horne

Cindy Matley

Goodyear Heights

North West Akron

Highland Square

New Franklin

Craig Dunlap & Evan Mathewson

Sean Flowerday

Sarah, Liam & Henry Parsons

Jen Prentiss & Butterfly Girl

West Akron


Bralin Radosevic

Wanda Tracy



Christina Dearing & Violet Grinder


Katie Carver Reed & Noah Hagey Highland Square


Silvia Reed, Aaliyah & Isabella |

Wadsworth THE Devil Strip /

Downtown Akron

Joe and Angel

Gypsy Grace and the Vintage Goat West Akron JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

Roger and Angel Highland Square


Todd Mosko Tallmadge


the arts

Self Portraits What do you like to do in Akron for fun?

Rubber Ducklings North Canton

Taylor, Ladale and Jayden South West Akron


Marie Curry and Brant Lee: “Rubber Ducks, UA Soccer, walk on the towpath and Sand Run, Nighlight, Hardesty Park, Highland Square for the Theatre and Mustard Seed.”


Steve Coss: “Rubber Ducks, Lock 3, Barley House.”


Katie Carver Reed: “I love walking through my neighborhood to get coffee, food and music.”


Rod and Zac Clark: “Play baseball.”


Jasmine and Jennifer Lamey: “Rubber Ducks games and soccer tournaments.”


The Keys family: “Visit the zoo and attend Rubber Ducks baseball games.”


J Dillon and Jackie: “Rubber Ducks!”


Holly, Justin and Chase: “Rubber Ducks Games.”


Bill and Will Graham: “Rubber Ducks.”

10. Blair Walderf and Chuck Bass: “Stuff and things, sporting games.”

Who's your favorite Akronite?

Next to Kin Supportive Services East Akron

Roni Caputo, Bridget Guffey and family


Tom Ball: “Ken Babby”


Bralin Radosevic: “Rob Dyrdek”


Todd Mosko: “Joe ‘Smokin’ Walsh”


Janet Yoeng: “All of them.”


Tim and Paulé Sponseller: “LeBron.”


BJ Tinlin: “David Brennan.”

What do you love about Akron?

Cyler Johnson and Grayson McLellan Medina

Steve Coss and friend


Jen Prestiss: “Lots of family activities.”


Christina Dearing and Violet Grinder: “Alcoholics Anonymous, Spaghetti Warehouse, the parks system, home of LeBron James.”


Silvia Reed: “It’s so fun.”


Lisa and Nicholas Shaw: “Highland Square!!”


Cyler Johnson and Grayson McLellan: “The Rubber Ducks.”


Charles Rainey and Kat Hoyer: “I love that Akron recycles and that there are a lot of economical events!”


Dominic Graham and Larry Harper: “LeBron James.”


Dennis Patton: “Color Vibe!, Friday night concerts at Lock 3, Canal Park.”


Dann and Dexter Bonds: “Ducks.”

10. Marsha and Sami Wooten: “I love that there are so many fun things to do, like going to MetroParks, hanging out at Artisan or going to a Rubber Ducks game.”


Andrew and Heather Linebarger, Chris, Madias, & Kayla Scalf

11. Rick: “Cavs jersey.”

Cuyahoga Falls

What's your favorite Akron restaurant?

Shane Wynn

Conor Fleming & friends

Highland Square

Sagamore Hills



BJ Bewling: “Luigi’s.”


Angel and Soe, Gypsy Grace and the Vintage Goat: “Frank’s Place.”


Christian, Jackson and Benjamin Odadzin: “Nepali Kitchen.”


James Ryan: “Lamp Post, Mike’s, Louve’s.”


David Horba: “Bistro on 241.”


Don and Laura Whitman: “Diamond Grill, Primo’s Deli.”


Andrew and Heather Linebarger, Chris, Madias and Kayla Scalf: “Lockview.”


Chris Boron and Shawn Smith: “Luigi’s.”

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


the arts

Lisa and Nicholas Shaw Highland Square


Charles Rainey & Kat Hoyer

Brian Bakos and sons Stow


Tim and Paulé Sponseller Manchester


| THE Devil Strip /

Dominic Graham & Larry Harper Barberton

David Horba and sons Uniontown

Deidre and Trevor Menth & friend

Ashley Ray, Iena Sam & friend

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7Canton

Rod and Zac Clark

Mike Ost



Christian, Jackson & Benjamin Odadzin

Jasmine and Jennifer Lamey

Highland Square

James Ryan Tallmadge

Dennis Patton Manchester

Cuyahoga Falls

Jaden, Keren, Laney & Kemmes Keys Jr. New London

J Dillon and Jackie Kent


the arts


BJ Tinlin and son

Dann and Dexter Bonds

Don and Laura Whitman

Cuyahoga Falls



Holly, Justin and Chase

Bill and Will Graham


North Royalton

Lori Freeland, Tara Neidert & Alicia Miner Dalton

LIVE MUSIC, CARD READERS, POETRY, MASSAGES AND MORE 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

Photo courtesy of Shane Wynn

Steve and Guarav

Marsha and Sami Wooten

Sami Wooten

Highland Square




Chris Boron & Shawn Smith

Blair Walderf & Chuck Bass





j u ly C omi c s • j u ly C o m i cs

The Altered Realm

By Dan Gorman and Brian Dunphy

Well, Jackson. You have all the talent, all the skills, all the experience and you are the perfect candidate for the job. However, I just can’t hire you.

What!?!? But...

It’s your resume. I just can’t stand

but why?

Oh, and...

We don’t validate parking.

this font!

Brought to you by The Altered Realm Radio Show. Listen live every Saturday night from 8pm to midnight on KRMA Karma Internet Radio.


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Mon - Fri 11am - 7:30pm


Sat 11am - 4pm • 330.835.9945 26

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


Vegan Specials

1947 W. Market St., Ste 104 (behind CVS) WWW.THEDEVILSTRIP.COM


community & culture CULTURE CLUB

Volunteers for the United Way of Summit County’s KaBOOM! playground build put their backs into it for the kids who play at Suddieth Park. (Photo: M. Sophie Hamad)


culture & Community

å ë



çê ê


community events



An overview of community events happening in Akron this July by Amanda Sedlak-Hevener

å Tai Chi with Nancy Gardner July 6 at Akron-Summit Public Library, 12:15 – 1 pm Tai Chi features a series of breathing exercises and slow movements, which makes it ideal for people of all ages and levels of fitness. This ancient Chinese form of martial arts dates back to the 1500s, and has been called “meditation in motion.” (Photo courtesy of Healthy You)

ç Monday Yoga July 11, 18, 25 at PNC Center, 5:15 pm This series of 60 minute-long yoga classes are hosted by Akron Yoga and Wellness. You’ll need to bring your own yoga mat and go through bank security before the class begins,

features special guests John Najeway, a Master Brewer for the Thirsty Dog Brewing Company,

back to Italy, you can enjoy this annual Italian Heritage Festival. There will be food

Theresa Bembnister, the Associate Curator of the Akron Art Museum, and local artists whose work is on the walls of Acme Fresh Market #1 on West Market Street. Beer tastings and food

vendors, live music, grape stomping, dance performances, a bocce tournament and much more. All ages are welcome. (Photo courtesy of

string, horn, piano, and woodwind ensemble. (Photo courtesy of Kent State University)

ì Crafty Mart – The Maker Sessions

July 27 at The Bit Factory, 6-9 pm Running your own craft business is almost impossible without the help of social media ë Family Fun Day July 16 at Perkins Stone Mansion, 12 – 4 pm and store websites. This session of the Crafty è Brew at the Zoo July 14 at Akron Zoo, 6 – 9 pm Family Fun Day with the Summit County Mart focuses on the importance of branding Christmas in July is the theme of this adults-only Historical Society features crafts made from and taking good pictures of your merchandise. (Photo courtesy of Crafty Mart) event, and those that attend are encouraged wool, games designed specifically for children, to wear ugly holiday sweaters and similarly live music, and even free tours of the John themed outfits. You’ll be able to sample beers Brown House and Perkins Stone Mansion. This î Nerd’s Night Out August 3 at Perkins Stone Mansion, from the Mucky Duck Brewery, Ohio Brewing event is free and designed for people of all 5:30 – 8:30 pm Company, and the Hoppin’ Frog Brewery, ages. (Photo courtesy of Summit Live365) Fiesta Italiana Cuyahoga Falls)

are included. (Photo courtesy of Akron Art Museum)

among others. There will also be a DJ spinning tunes, food trucks, and even a fashion truck on the premises. (Photo by Blake Ferguson)

í Kent/Blossom Music Festival

Launch model rockets in honor of Akron’s own astronaut, Judith Resnick at Perkins Stone

Chamber Ensembles

é Art and Ale on Location

ê Festa Italiana

July 24 at Hudson Public Library, 2 pm Enjoy classical music and contemporary hits

Mansion. This is the second Nerd’s Night Out, a series of Akron-based events for those in the millennial generation. The event is free, and

July 14 at Acme Fresh Market #1, 6 – 9 pm An offshoot of the Akron Art Museum’s annual

July 15, 16, 17 at Cuyahoga Falls River Square, all day

Art and Ale event, Art and Ale on Location

Whether or not you can trace your heritage

but don’t let that deter you. Tickets can be purchased online, or you can pay $5 at the door. (Photo courtesy of Akron Yoga and Wellness)

Community News Brief

played by the students of the Kent State School

food and drinks will be provided. (Photo courtesy

of Music. Professional musicians from the Cleveland Orchestra coach the students in this

of International Women’s Air & Space Museum)

dumping on the streets during Education Days at Canal Park, and worked to support

In Case of Emergency

Keep Akron Beautiful’s mission of improving

distribution of federal funds made available through the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/Federal Emergency Management Agency under the Emergency Food and Shelter National

Annette Bragg is resigning after 17 years as the Executive Director. She now plans to work in a broader capacity in animal welfare to reach even more people and to advocate for animals

Akron’s quality of life through coordinating the Beautification Watch Award distribution which encourages citizens to create positive curb appeal at their home and workplace. Mayor Dan Horrigan proclaimed Friday, June 3, 2016 as "Pam Ray Day" in the City of Akron, in Pam's honor.

Keep on Keepin’ Akron Beautiful Pam Ray, Keep Akron Beautiful’s Education Specialist since 1989, is retiring after 27 years with the agency. Pam has inspired generations of Akron’s fourth grade students to appreciate the value of our living trees through her annual Arbor Day celebration, taught young and old citizens alike to prevent litter and illegal

United Way of Summit County will oversee

Board Program designated for Summit County. Summit County will be awarded $229,126 for calendar year 2016, to be used by eligible local service agencies to supplement and expand the capacity of existing emergency food and shelter programs in Summit County. In 2015

Green for Pink Countryside Conservancy and Mustard Seed Market have teamed up to help ten area cancer

participating agencies, which provided more than 409,276 meals, 12,221 nights of shelter, paid 205 utility bills and provided 133 units of

patients find a fresh approach to treatment recovery through a four-week program focused on learning to select and prepare locally grown

rent/mortgage assistance.

produce, Green for Pink. The Seasonal Market Share Program is available at no cost, although participants must fill out an application and be

Even Happier Trails

of Keep Akron Beautiful.

Happy Trails Farm Animal Sanctuary Founder

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

the first of a series, and will also be writing articles, news updates and educational material for national organizations and special interest groups.

the Summit County local board has distributed Emergency Food and Shelter Funds to 12

Pictured right: Pam Ray on Arbor Day. Photo courtesy


through her writing, public speaking, and consulting. She will soon be finishing her book,

(continued on page 33)



culture & community “Be who?” Ace Epps called out to the audience.

winners of the BMe Leader Award. The 2015 winners, Shante Robinson, Minister Michael Starks, John Thompson and Austin

“Be me!” the crowd confidently shouted

Clopton, were also honored. These eight


men were awarded for their outstanding

The energy in the Akron Urban League hall was contagious. People were calling out “Amen,” taking photos together, clapping and hugging. Despite not knowing anyone in the room, I found myself joining along. I snapped a few selfies with the folks sitting next to me, and I applauded as loudly as I could. I felt part of a community.

Better Together: Akron BMe Community Celebrates Black Men Eight Akron Men Awarded $10,000 Each for their Positive Impact by Grace Ebner Photos courtesy of Svetla Morrison

Ace Epps is the Akron Community Manager for BMe Community, a nonprofit organization sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Its goal is to change the narrative about black men. Instead of regurgitating the negative stereotypes and news stories, BMe focuses on positive images of black men, showing that they truly are assets to our communities. At the Better Together Celebration on June 23, eight Akron men were recognized.

leadership and service, and each received $10,000 to help them to continue serving the Akron community. “To be able to show the kids, be able to show our community that you can do other things besides get in trouble - you can do positive things to help your community out - that’s a real big thing to me. I’m a hometown guy. I love Akron,” Austin Clopton, owner of Developing Student Athletes Academy, shared. The tagline for this event was “Better Together,” and that phrase proved to be true. With the support of family, friends, and the BMe Community, these eight men have in turn been able to support those most in need in Akron.

As I watched each man get called up to the stage, I couldn’t help but smile and feel proud of them as I joined their family and friends by cheering in support. DaMareo

“I’m from here, I was born here, I was raised here. I love the people here. I want my community to be the best place and provide the best quality of life for as many people in our city as we can,” DaMareo Cooper, organizing director of the Ohio Organizing Collaborative, stated. Shante Robinson, founder of Unified Mindz, shared a similar sentiment: “I love where I live. I

Cooper, Willie McGee, Jason Miller and Denny Wilson were celebrated as the 2016

love my people. . . . So to be an impact (continued on page 37)

Search for the Truth: An Afternoon of C r y p t o z o o l o g y Saturday July 23, 2016 Main Library Auditorium

Join us for a unique and fascinating afternoon as we explore reports of elusive creatures among us.

1-2 pm Doug Waller Doug Waller, a founding member of the SouthEastern Ohio Society for Bigfoot Investigation will speak about Bigfoot sightings in Ohio.

2-3:30 pm Seth Breedlove Film maker and investigative journalist Seth Breedlove will screen his latest documentary “The Beast of Whitehall”


JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |




AKRON WAY. by Mark Schweitzer Photos courtesy of Shane Wynn


ifty two years is a long time. I was six years old when Jim Brown led the Cleveland to its last NFL title. I don’t

remember specifically watching the game, though I do remember seeing him and coach Blanton Collier regularly on the old weekly Quarterback Club TV show. On a black and white TV.

championship. No more legendary sports tragedies to relive over and over and over again.

asking: “OK. So what’s next?” More championships — maybe even in other

the Cavs’ route to victory is so typical of Northeast Ohio. How it was totally earned. We’ll hear how it was done “The Hard

Now there is only victory.

sports (Yes, that means you, Browns and Indians) is something our region can look

Way” — probably from people who never had a clue what that really means.

The last two years have been fun. LeBron James announced he was coming home on my birthday in 2014. He led the Cavaliers

forward to without the burden of being seen as perennial losers. We are no longer prisoners of the past. But I think this victory reaches a little further into our collective

Of course it was done the hard way. If one of our sports teams was ever going to win a championship, it would have to be

Like so many fans, I’ve lived through all these hard, lean years; through all the

to an NBA Championship on my daughter’s birthday this year. Those are some damn

psyche than that.

against nearly impossible odds, in the most improbable manner, in the toughest place

disappointments whose names I refuse to list anymore. I’ve left them behind now, like some bad memory shrinking into a rear-view mirror. Now, there is only a road

good presents.

Some of my “Twitter friends” are feeling it too. They’ve said that this victory goes beyond sports; it’s as if the scales have suddenly fallen from our eyes, allowing

to play, against the team with the best record ever.

ahead. And a fresh, full tank of gas.

and pride, and have spent the hours since the people of Northeast Ohio to suddenly the final buzzer sounded reading, watching glimpse our true selves: Steadfast Believers.

we roll here. Those who have struggled know that nothing is given. Sometimes,

That’s what LeBron James and the Cavaliers have given us. No more talk of curses. No more waiting for the other shoe to drop

and listening to reactions from people all over the world. I expected the glow of a championship to last a long time, but

Hard Workers. Proud Dreamers. Winners.

even the little that you have is taken away. One thing is also for sure — almost nothing comes as expected.

as crazy as it seems, I already find myself

do know we’ll be continue to hear how


every time we get close to winning a

Yet hardly two days later, it suddenly feels just a little anti-climactic. I still feel the joy

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

Where will this take us? I don’t know. I

It makes perfect sense, because that’s how


culture & community

Hosted By

SARAH JONES Is that her in the bird mask?




es Yoly go


We Get You ... READY TO HELP


RESTORE PRIDE AND JOY Some of our heroes understand that — and none better than the kid from Akron. Like some Odyssean adventurer, LeBron James has traveled far and wide over the past thirteen years; his skill, his talent, his basketball smarts and determination being the stuff of legend — even before he embarked on an NBA career. High expectations met with high criticism when championships did not come right away, and even more so when the hero


GREATNESS CAN BE FOUND HERE, TOO. The American novelist Thomas Wolfe famously said you can’t go home again. But what did he know? I doubt he ever set foot in Akron.

left us to go follow his quest for greatness. But then there was The Return. LeBron came back to us as a man fully formed; molded into a true leader and a champion — one who was ready to shape others as well.


// Mark is The Dude behind Schweitzer Communications & Media. An Internationalist, OldSchool Ad Guy, Writer, Creative Director and Staff Mixologist, he most recently contributed to The Devil Strip with a widely-shared essay, “The Corner Pocket,” on the glory of Akron’s pocket neighborhoods, like Northside, Oak Park Hill and Englewood. Follow him Twitter at @schweitzercomm for more on good stuff.

© Sigrid Olsson / Alamy

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culture & community

The Trouble with Old People


by Steve Van Auken


MAKE YOUR RESERVATION TODAY FOR AKRON’S EVENT OF THE SUMMER! Visit or call CG&FS Development at 330.384.2882 or Please note: This is an Adults Only Event. Guests at the event must be 21 years of age or older.

CGFS_GUA-DS-Ad.indd 1

5/19/16 2:04 PM

Young parents face many difficult choices: finding a place to live, shaping career choices around the needs of the new arrival, and

"Our little Caleb was speaking in full sentences by the time he was two," you may hear your aged parent casually remark to some friends.

deciding whether to allow the grandparents to get within ten miles of the kid at any time prior to his or her twenty-first birthday.

This may conflict with what you remember, which was that at that age young Caleb was expressing himself with six or eight sounds that you could identify as words, and a bunch

If you do choose to open the gates to us, be

of sounds that might have been words or

advised. We will do for our grandparenting what we have always done for our careers,

might have been signs of gastric distress. There were also the non-verbal behaviors that

our hobbies, our pets. We will turn it into a competition. Be prepared for us to find deep meaning in

communicated his wishes well, such as that he had eaten enough and that the household would be improved if the dog were given the rest of his mac and cheese. You might

every behavior of your new bundle of joy, no matter how slight. Or messy. Your child will not just have bowel movements. She will

remember that full sentences were in short supply, unless you counted "Caleb poop." But resist the urge to point this out to your mom

have movements of a texture and form that will clearly show she is destined for Princeton, where her bodily habits will receive the appreciation they deserve.

or dad. They know what they know. And what they know is that by God their grandkid is more special than those brat grandkids of their best friends.

If your son is the sort of baby who makes it easy on you by sleeping through the night, it is because he is busy weaving dream thoughts about the essential nature of the universe. Just as Einstein did. If he is the sort of baby who is fussy and wakes you up every hour, it is because he is so intellectually curious that he can't stand

You will soon realize that your parent has made a strategic blunder in going first in the grandchild specialness derby. She has shown her competitors the mark they must beat. And they are up to the task. "Oh isn't that nice," Natalie, her friend since childhood, will coo. "Full sentences. In English you mean? Well, of

to miss a single minute of wakefulness.

course that is important. Imagine our surprise when our little Sonia started speaking Urdu after we took her with us shopping at the

Stage Do you remember when you were a child and,

Your Favorite Tribute Bands

JUL 15 Aeroforce As a Tribute to Aerosmith with Body Thief JUL 22 Nighttrain The Guns and Roses Tribute Experience with Devilstrip JUL 29 Almost Queen The Ultimate Queen Experience with Chris Allen & The Guilty Hearts

Gates open at 6 p.m. Concerts start at 7 p.m.

JUL 16th – 17th

Wednesdays 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.

African American Festival

Lock Bottom Blues & Jazz Club at Lock 4

JUL 16 Robert T The Real Soul Pleaser

Discover blues and jazz beats on the banks of the Ohio-Erie Canal in the heart of Akron.

Tribute to James Brown/8 p.m. with John J Saxx Watkins/7 p.m. Free Admission.

JUL 17 S.O.S Band

July 6 July 13 July 20 July 27

Admission $10 after 5 p.m.

JULY 23rd


The Musical Legacy of Chicago with Charita Franks $5 Admission

Fabulous Voices Shady Drive The King Bees Moises Borges Brazilian Jazz Band


with Morgan James

fascinated, you watched a bug crawl across your windowsill, moving its antennae here and

Middle Eastern market that afternoon."

there, until you ventured to pick him up and felt his tiny feet on your hand, giving you that delicious jolt of fear and delight? And do you remember what Mom or Dad was

If you are holding onto the idea that we will have any shame about bragging for our own aggrandizement about the activities of your kids, abandon all hope. We cannot be shamed and we cannot be stopped. Think of the

doing at that time? Yes, they were nagging you to practice the French horn. Or your pirouette,

demands of my generation as a force of nature, like a tornado or water in your basement.

so you could get the lead in the recital. Instead of the daughter of that annoying woman down the street who could be put in her place if only

There is nothing you can do about it. You have elected to allow the grandparents in, and now you are stuck with us.

you would practice about six hours a day. Your only hope is that time will eventually slow Be prepared for our delusional misinterpretation our competitive juices. Or that you will be lucky of your child's every move. You must be enough to have in your family a grandparent prepared to act promptly and sternly when we such as myself, who is not immune to the try to read "Scientific American" magazine temptations of competitive grand- parenting to your child three months before you had but is strong enough to resist them. I freely planned to introduce Goodnight, Moon. Eternal admit that it is really not true that our two year


vigilance is the price you will have to pay for having us around. There is another set of delusional beliefs that

old grandson, Bennett, has memorized the Periodic Table of the Elements. I apologize to everyone I know to whom I might have made this flagrant misrepresentation.

A glorious way to spend your Sunday evening. Concerts 5 - 7 p.m. Go to for details and performers.

we hold, or will soon cobble together out of thin air. This is the retrospective embellishment of your child's development. It will bear no

The fact is, he still hasn't quite mastered the atomic weight of Boron. Probably by this

resemblance to what actually occurred.

afternoon, though. I'll send you a video.

JUL 24th – AUG 28th

Wireless for All.


culture & Community

O’Neil Woods

Take a Hike

feeling of achievement.

realized, inevitably, we’d have to get back up the hill. We met the riverside and discovered that years of hikers before us made their own

out on our path home.

words and photos by Kait Erdman

O’Neil Woods did not disappoint. The 1.8 mile

Going into this hike, I was told that O’Neil Woods Metro Park trail would leave me,

trail immediately feels secluded from civilization, path to the water. You’ll cross the street before and the woods themselves are beautiful. While coming to the halfway point of this trail, which the Metro Parks labeled the trail as difficult, my features a large barn and a break from the

and we quickly reached flatter land that lead to the end. O’neil Woods was a great hike with beautiful views and a moderate workout. You’ll

“feeling like you accomplished something.” As a fairly active individual who has failed to workout in the past month, a difficult hike seemed welcome. My roommate and I decided

roommate and I scoffed at this for the first bit of the trail. The walk itself is peaceful, and this path has a “mystical forest” feel to it as you walk under a canopy of trees.

Soon after comes the hill. Going up, there are no stairs as there were coming down. The

cross the street twice on this venture, but be thrown into seclusion throughout most of the trail. This trail left us feeling like we experienced magic, and also that we were ready for dinner.

to make it an after-work adventure that would end with a well deserved burrito bowl and a

It wasn’t until the third set of stairs that I

sweatshirt I wore as a well-prepared Ohioan quickly revealed to be a mistake as we sweated

// Just a writer posing as a STEM major. I enjoy short adventures and caffeine-induced panic attacks.

(continued from page 28) selected to participate. Applications and more information are available by contacting


The uphill burn doesn’t last too long, though,

Parking Exploring Peninsula by Bike and Train words and photos by Grace Ebner

Akron Children’s Hospital Zones in on Heroes This summer Akron Children’s Hospital will be introducing patients who have a unique story to tell. They’’ll highlight these young patient heroes in specially designated stretches of the 2016 race course called ‘Hero Zones.’ Each sponsored Hero Zone will feature an Akron Children’s patient who has overcome an obstacle or illness. There will be a total of 17 zones placed along the FirstEnergy Akron

Head to the Peninsula Depot and embark on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad (CVSR) for a day of healthy sunshine, beautiful scenery,

tree-lined shady sections and sunny boardwalks over the marshes. Bikers will also be relieved to find a place to stop halfway through the route

yummy food and local wares. As part of the CVSR’s Bike Aboard! program, board the train

for a rest and bite to eat. At the intersection of Bolanz Rd. and Riverview Rd., Hunt Farm

for a one-way ride and then bike back to the depot on the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail. Cost is $3 for the one-way ride, and passengers can choose how far out they want

Visitor Information Center offers restrooms, educational displays and activities for kids, and at Szalay’s Sweet Corn Farm & Market, bikers can purchase fresh fruit, corn on the cob and

to ride and bike back. Folks who’d prefer to walk or run the trail are also welcome to utilize

ice cream.

The Akron Children’s Hospital Akron Marathon Race Series will kick off with the National Interstate 8k & 1 Mile on Saturday, June 25,

the train. Taking the CVSR southbound to Botzum Station allows for an enjoyable seven mile bike

Upon returning to Peninsula Depot, bikers can enjoy a patio dinner and cold beer at Winking Lizard Tavern. Bring some cash to buy Cuyahoga Valley National Park gear or support

ride back to Peninsula Depot. Bikers will find this section of the towpath trail delightful.

local shops such as Elements Gallery and Right Light Gallery, which both feature the work of

The trail is flat and smooth and highlights the beauty of Northeast Ohio, alternating between

Ohio artisans. And if, after this beautiful day biking the trail, you’ve decided you would like

Marathon course where runners will pass by the patient hero and their family and friends. Throughout the summer, Akron Children’s Hospital and the Akron Marathon will share the stories and photos of patient heroes leading up to and on race day of their marquee event on Sept. 24, 2016. Their stories can be found at

2016 at 10 a.m. at InfoCision Stadium. In recognition of their special role along the Blue Line, the patient heroes have been invited to be official starters of the race. (Photo courtesy of Akron Children’s Hospital)


to make it a regular part of your week, be sure to stop by Century Cycles for top-rate biking gear and advice.

For more information on Bike Aboard!, visit Pictured above (clockwise from top left): Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail; Time for a selfie break!; Yummy peaches at Szalay’s.; The CVSR train heading into Peninsula Depot; Beaver Marsh (All photos courtesy of Grace Ebner/The Devil Strip)

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


culture & community

New / Native:

Akron HERstory:

Akron Photographers

Bertha V. Moore

Compiled by M. Sophie Hamad and Katie Jackson


Emily S. Durway Occupation:

Hometown: Austin, TX Neighborhood: Highland Square over 125 years. They bring in national and international classical, brilliant musicians for a six-concert series each year. Much of the music What do you wish was more on Akronites' radar? 1. Many people haven't walked the

is a mixture of various classical composers

entire canal downtown, which is an amazing feature.; 2. Coach House Theater; 3. Cover-

and modern, more avant garde pieces. All the concerts are free to University of Akron students and all area school-aged children. It

charge-free live, original music that is so accessible (alternative and rock and singer/ songwriter). For Classical Music---Tuesday Musical Association has been around for

is one of the things I invest in each year. They have worked with the Knight Foundation and many others so that they can bring in these (continued on page 53)


Bertha V. Moore was one of the first

African-American women, to increase the

African-American women actively involved in Akron politics.

political leverage of African Americans in the city. The Tea Time Study club tried to get local candidates to support improving accommodations and job opportunities for

Bertha was born in 1896 in Anniston,

Alabama. Bertha was dedicated to education. African Americans, sponsored forums for local After graduating from Selma University, Bertha candidates to learn about the community’s taught in segregated elementary schools in concerns, and even supervised Akron’s Alabama. In the early 1920’s, Bertha moved north to Newcomerstown in Tuscarawas County, where she married Dalmas Moore.

Emancipation Day Program.

Around 1922, Bertha and her family moved

Advisory Committee on Civic Unity. She

to Akron.

also served as the alternate delegate to the Democratic Convention.

By 1961, Bertha was appointed to the Mayor’s

During the Depression in the early 1930’s,

m Fitzwater

Commercial Photographer Occupation: Hometown: Bath Neighborhood: North Hill such as the Corporate Challenge and Kids Are Number One Run - I thought the "big city" was so cool and bustling. At the time I didn't realize Akron was then a ghost town in the evening and on weekends.

What do you wish was more on Akronites' radar? I wish more Akronites realized that they can get involved and impact the direction of the city - the groups working hard to make Akron Where in Akron do you like to escape? better want their help. The Matinee What is your favorite local cultural asset? The Towpath Trail, Freedom Trail, Hike and Bike Trail, and biking opportunities in general (but

Why should everyone try your favorite local restaurant? Everyone should ride their bike down to Fisher's in Peninsula and sit on

there is always room for improvement).

the patio - they now have a decent craft beer

When did you fall for Akron? Growing up my Dad always took us downtown for events

By Ilenia Pezzaniti

Attorney and Photographer

draft list and their food is much better than the chain-like stuff at The Lizard. // Photo of Tim Fitzwater by Tim Fitzwater

and at a time when there were no AfricanAmerican teachers in the schools, Bertha taught adults how to read and write through the Works Project Administration. Not only did she help African-American adults of Akron, but she also helped the children. Bertha believed that all children should have equal access to all the opportunities available in city schools. She was so adamant about bringing this change into Akron schools that she helped create these changes herself. At Central High School, for example, AfricanAmerican students weren’t allowed to sing in the main choir because their voices were not as appealing as the voices of the white students, according to the teachers at the school. Bertha, with a group of friends in tow, broke that barrier.

Bertha was also a religious woman. She was heavily involved with the Second Baptist Church, where she helped with the youth choir. She played the piano and organ for other churches, and was a choir director for the Antioch Baptist Church. In the 1960s and 1970s, Bertha served as a teacher’s aide at Fraunfelter and Barber elementary schools and South High School. Bertha raised her children to place an importance on education as well. Bertha’s daughter, Mary, became the first AfricanAmerican teacher in the Akron public schools. Her son, Spurgeon, became principal at Akron’s South High School; and her son Kermit lives in New York as a world-renowned cellist and conductor. Bertha died in 1980.

In 1943, she started the Tea Time Study club, a Democratic organization for

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 for cubs’ exhibit hours.



| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


culture & community


sAY TO FREE FARE Fridays. On Saturday, June 18th volunteers from United Way of Summit County, City of Akron and Foresters built a great new place for kids to play in ONE day. The project is in partnership with KaBOOM!, the national nonprofit dedicated to giving kids the childhood they deserve by bringing play to those who need it most. (Photos courtesy of ________)

METRO’s Free Fare Fridays just made your summer stay-cation worthwhile with FREE* line-service fares every Friday during July and August. See you on the bus! *Does not apply to METRO SCAT, NCX, or Call-A-Bus.


community & culture



Lauren Ward shares what she has learned during her years of owning a small business in Akron words and photo by Michelle DeShon

HOSTED BY CASCADE LOCKS PARK ASSOCIATION her sense of style and bringing that style to her customers.

After bringing unique fashion to Akron for about eight years, Lauren Ward, owner

“Retail is sparse in Akron so it’s cool to be a clothing shop in

of NOTO Boutique, will be opening a second location,

downtown because

NOTO North, across

there’s not much yet,” said Ward.

from Luigi’s. What could be better than ending a day of shopping at NOTO North with a salad buried under a pile of cheese?

NOTO Boutique is located at 76 South Main St. in the Shoppes at Akron Centre across from the library. Parking is available on

Lauren Ward, Owner

the street and in the Akron Center Parking Deck. Boutique hours are Monday - Friday 10 am - 2pm and Saturday and Sunday by

“I wish I would have known that it’s not as easy as people think it is. It’s easier said than done and it really is the day to day grind that people don’t expect,” said Ward. She said that it has taken her eight years to feel confident in running a small business. She said that when


she started, she knew nothing about business. She hears young people say that they want to start a fashion line or open a shop and she wants them to know that it is different than what people think. She wishes she knew that in a small city, a business owner needs to gain a

Akron Glass Works is currently located, which will soon be moving near The University of Akron. The grand opening will be Saturday, August 6 during the Downtown Akron Artwalk.

NOTO North will be located at 106 North Main St. in Akron directly across from Luigi’s where

following in order to be successful. “This would be easier in a big city,” said Ward.

Pictured Above (clockwise from top): A flock of ducks approaching the finish line; Beth Leipold, Operations Manager of Cascade Locks Park Association, and a volunteer wait for all the rubber ducks to cross the finish line; A sign points visitors to a booth where they can purchase a duck for the race, a Duck Derby shirt and other souvenirs; Volunteers toss ducks out of the water after they cross the finish line; Nick and Sarah from PAWSibilities stand with two adoptable dogs, Oscar and Meyer; A volunteer holds a duck in each hand and quacks while waiting to dump the ducks into the canal; Two volunteers duck a few hundred ducks into the canal for the 12 pm Duck Derby race. (Photos and words courtesy of Michelle DeShon / The Devil Strip)

The new shop will be more masculine than NOTO Boutique’s “bubbly and feminine” style. Ward said that there will be a mix of women’s and men’s clothing, vintage finds, home goods and bath and beauty products. One think Ward has not had a problem with is staying true to

Lauren Ward can be reached at (330) 451-NOTO (6686), online at and NOTO on Facebook. // Michelle DeShon is an aspiring journalist with an unhealthy obsession with antique cameras, french fries and vinyl records.




| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


culture & community

Running with the Dogs

Pictured left: Teri Parasson with Cowboy. “One of the things I love about running is that it allows me to help others in the form of charitable races and keeping company with four-legged friends. In helping myself I can help others. A little bit about Cowboy: He is a sweetie with a nose. Loves to explore and cuddle.” (Photo courtesy of Teri Parasson)

One of a Kind Pets connects dogs who want to run with runners who love dogs by Krissy O’Connor


ow that winter is behind us and summer is heading into full bloom, the parks and roadways are filled with runners. If you happen to be around West Akron on a Friday evening

you might see a group of runners running alongside a hodge-podge mixed pack of dogs. The Running Dog Runners are a group of athletes who just so happen to love dogs. Pictured left: Maggie Batizy with Max. “Knowing that you are getting a dog out of the shelter to get some exercise, fresh air and personal attention is so rewarding. I always leave happier than when I came in and in fact tend make it a point to go on a day when I’m in a less than stellar mood. Max has since been adopted but proved to be a true gentleman on his runs.” (Photo courtesy of Steven Brignon)

(continued from page 29) to them, to be an inspiration to them . . . it means a lot.” This love for our city and its people was immediately apparent in every conversation I had with the winners. Jason Miller, Summit County Site Coordinator for College Now, found his niche helping students attend college. He shared this wisdom: “In my twenties I strived to make a million dollars. Today I strive to make a significant impact on a million lives. In my youth it was all about being important and wealth. Today I am striving not to be important but to be significant.” Minister Michael Starks, founder


exercise, she realized her need for personal experience was about to come second to her

desire for helping these dogs. As we all may have learned from Cesar Milan, an exercised dog is more likely to be calm and

Folks interested in finding out more information or volunteering for this program are encouraged to join the Facebook group. Orientations are held monthly, and Dillon stresses that you don’t need to be a supreme athlete to participate.

Dillon hopes to be able to start similar programs with other local animal rescues and facilities in the future.

maintain the focus needed for training. When a dog is taken for a run either on his own or with a pack, he gains not only well-needed exercise, but also life lessons needed to help find his forever home.

The group was started last year by Beverly

The RDR’s Facebook group page is filled

1929 W. Market St., Akron, OH

Dillon who was thinking about starting a dog running service professionally and was looking to gain handling experience. She turned to One of A Kind Pet Rescue to volunteer. When

with selfies and pictorials of these energetic volunteers and the dogs. Dillion requests volunteers to tell the good, the bad, and the ugly as it will only help the dog to

For more information,

she saw how much the rescue animals needed

become adoptable.

of Start Living and Acting Positive Initiative, focuses on helping offenders, showing them that there is another way, a better way, to live. He shared that,

to the BMe conference they had in Washington D.C. and meeting like-minded people and people doing great things in other communities, it motivated me to

“It [being a leader] means that I have been blessed.” These men also had the opportunity to visit the

do more, gain more balance in my life, stop making excuses [and] maximize opportunities given to me.”

White House, where they were honored for their dedication and service as BMe Leaders. Willie McGee, athletic director of St. Vincent-St. Mary High School,

These eight men have clearly all put forth tremendous effort into bettering themselves and our community. I am so honored to have

provided this insight on his experience: “Going

had the opportunity to speak with them. We

// Krissy O’Connor is a transplanted ex-beach hippie that loves to explore the depths of Akron with her three small humans and their furry friend.

will be profiling them about their respective work and organizations for upcoming issues. In the meantime, if you see any of these eight men, thank them. They’ve helped make our city a better place. // If Grace Ebner were a plant, she’d be a lilac bush.

For more information about BMe Community, visit

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


Photo courtesy of Claire Meneer

culture & community

Akron Ex-Pat

Name / Age: Claire Meneer / 23 Location: Washington, D.C. Occupation: Office Manager at West Wing Writers Hometown: Fairlawn

What do you think it is about Akron that makes its native born so proud to claim it, even when they move hundreds of miles away? I remember reading, “The Hard Way on Purpose," by David Giffels. In it, Giffels talks about patterns of hope and loss, saying, “neither of these things - hope and loss - can exist without the other, and yet at every turn it is necessary to believe that at some point one will ultimately conquer. And that will be our legacy.” Many of us who are born and raised in Akron come from families that either immigrated to the area in search for the “American dream”, worked long hours in the rubber factories, or owned a small family business – these are people who know all about hope and loss. They believed, too, that one would ultimately conquer. For Akronites, it’s hope that conquers. But it’s loss that taught us to endure, to lean on one another, to draw strength from a sense of community -- a sense that has become so deeply ingrained, that Akron is completely inseparable from who we are. It is so much a part of us that we can't help but to be proud and wear it like a badge of honor. That’s why you see so many successful people from Akron go out and make their mark on the world and then come back. Whether it’s LeBron going to Miami or someone like me going to DC, that legacy of hope and the strength of loss, always draws us back. If you could take anything from Akron to where you're living now, what would it be? I know that everyone reading this right now, immediately thought…Swensons. And they would be correct! We have Shake Shak here, which people on the East Coast LOVE -- but honestly, my heart just breaks for them because they’ve never taken a bite out of a Galley Boy. If you could transplant anything to Akron from where you're living now, what would it be? This is a tough question, so I’m going to make it a little easier. If there was one thing I would miss most about DC, it’s the scenery. Sitting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, surrounded by history, and watching the sunset over the Capitol is one of the most spectacular things you’ll ever see. You're not just an Akron ex-pat, you're like a super fan, volunteering with a group

in DC called "The Ohio Society." What are those get-togethers like? How was it getting to watch the Finals with other Cavs fans from Ohio? I became a member of the Ohio Society as soon as I moved here over two years ago, and this past January I joined the Board as Director of Social Events. The events include Browns/Bengals watch parties, Happy Hours, and even an Ohio Birthday party. It’s a lot of drinking, eating, and making friends with strangers – pretty much every native Ohioan’s dream. When the Cavs won Game 5, I sort of selfishly used my position to create an event and send to our network so that I could watch the game with a few other fans. With it being such late notice, I really wasn’t expecting a big turnout… and I was so, so wrong. In true NEO Ohio fashion, the fans showed up. For Game 6 we had over 70 people in attendance, and for Game 7 the ENTIRE place was a sea of wine and gold. The local news came, the bar had to call for back-up staff, and by the end of the night I think I had hugged everyone there. In my heart, I had a feeling that would happen -- whether we all ended the night crying tears of joy or tears of sorrow, I knew that we would all come together – it was magical. When you visit home, where are your "must visit" places around town? What tops your itinerary? My love of pancakes and coffee takes priority right after spending time with family, so Akron Family Restaurant is definitely one of my favorite places (best pancakes!). Since my time is limited and I want to stay as up to date as possible, I love to check out all of the new places that have opened. Last month I went to Northside Speakeasy and it was amazing! We have similar concepts in DC that are hugely successful, so it was really neat to see something like that in Akron. What's your favorite Akron story or Akron trivia to share with folks when you're trying to explain where you're from? I usually don’t need to explain to people where I’m from, since my office décor makes it pretty clear… (framed Akron, Ohio print). But a lot of people don’t know that Akron is know as the “City of Innovation!”, so I usually just end up obnoxiously rattling off the very long list of things/people that we can all thank Akron for: tires, The Black Keys, Alcoholics Anonymous, Clark Gable, the National Hamburger Festival, oatmeal, the Wright brothers, the Goodyear Blimp, and last but certainly not least, LeBron James. Do you have a signature drink? I like to make the Peach Old Fashioned.



Hoppin’ Frog Brewery already makes some of our favorite beers but on Sunday, July 10, they’re upping the ante at the “Bike and Brew” themed Akron Farm and Flea downtown with a new “Devil Strip” black and tan, which has us all tingly with excitement. After you thank ‘em for the delicious beer, make sure you congratulate brewmaster Fred Karm on the three-year anniversary of the Tasting Room too!


Running the Pass


by Marilyn Icsman

Pizza Palooza

by Stephanie Baker, Kevin Wirth and Justin Lyons (@akronpizzatf)

SQUARE SCULLERY Make room on the road (and in parking lots) for Big Betty! Square Scullery’s food truck will be hitting the streets this month. And you should support them--not just because they’re a local small business offering amazing farmto-fork cuisine, but also because they are giving back to the community. Once a month they’ll be working to set up the truck to provide fresh meals to those in need. They will also offer a chance to buy “Random Acts of Kindness Cards” that give you the option to donate a meal to either a random customer or someone in need. (Photo courtesy of The Square Scullery)

This month, we headed outside our normally territory to Medina County for the 4th annual Pizza Palooza. This event takes place annually in Medina Square with local pizza vendors invited

just before lunchtime and the crowds.. The market was still going strong, and there were bands playing in the gazebo, making a great atmosphere for ultimate

to compete for the People’s Choice Award and Judge’s Choice Award. Romeo’s Pizza, Gionino’s Pizzeria and Marco’s Pizza have won the

pizza enjoyment. For $8, we got tickets to try a small slice at all 7 vendors, with an extra ticket to vote.

previous Pizza Paloozas. Pictured right: Gionino’s Pizza was the

Pizza Palooza took place adjacent to the Medina’s Farmer’s Market and was sponsored

winner of the people’s choice award. (Photo courtesy of Bob Finnan/The Medina Gazette)

by Westfield Bank, Feeding Medina County, Main Street Medina and the United Way. The square also featured booths set up by Medina

We immediately headed to Barley Jack’s after we bought our tickets, as it was the only

County nonprofits and social service groups. Proceeds from the event benefited some of the agencies as well.

vendor that we hadn’t tried before. As it was early in the event, we were dismayed that they had already run out of pizza, with more due

We were surprised, and a little disappointed, that 5 of the 7 vendors who attended Pizza Palooza are established chains: Gionino’s Pizzeria, Master Pizza, Domino’s, Marco’s and Papa Johns. Courthouse Pizza and Barley Jack’s represented locally owned business. We are

MELT The Cleveland-based restaurant Melt Bar & Grilled will open its seventh location in Akron on July 6. Known for its specialty grilled cheese sandwiches, Melt has found success and built a fan base throughout Ohio since its first opening in 2006. This will be Melt’s only freestanding location, and the building has been under renovation for months. Melt says that the interior will be similar to existing locations, with

and have been huge supporters of Courthouse Pizza, which is located in Medina Square. Courthouse Pizza is less than a year old, and is unique in the fact that you can purchase raw dough at any time to make at home. We weren’t familiar with Barley Jack’s, as it’s located outside our normal pizza sphere in Brunswick Hills Township, but were eager and excited to see what they had to offer.

soon. While we waited, we tried some other stands, and then headed back to Barley Jack’s. While we were gone ,they had gotten a new delivery of pizza, but were out again. They had drivers going back and forth throughout the event to resupply. In order to get in on the next delivery, we waited in the grass. However, when we got the front they hadn’t restocked their cheese pizza in the dozens of new boxes, so we left unfulfilled. Though visually unappealing, Marco’s mushroom pizza was very good and sprinkled with Italian seasoning. Their cheese pizza had a good flavor with a nicely seasoned sauce and a chewy crust. Though they’re a chain they’re not as saturated in the area.

The event ran from 9am to 2pm; we arrived Courthouse Pizza, our favorite going in, served us up some nice sized slices of cheese, and as expected, it was delicious. Courthouse Pizza has a thin, crisp crust, a homemade red sauce and is baked in a brick oven.

Ohio-themed decor and seating for about 120 people. (Photo courtesy of Melt Bar and Grilled)

as a different Domino’s employee in a complete head to toe costume. The winners of 2016 are Gionino’s for the People’s Choice award and the Judge’s Choice award went to Marco’s Pizza. While the street was closed for Pizza Palooza, the space was poorly utilized. The vendors were all lined up directly against the sidewalk of the square, making it difficult to line up for pizza and leaving us feeling cramped. The ticketing system was designed to keep lines flowing, but as shops didn’t clearly advertise what toppings were available, very few lines moved smoothly and waiting was the norm. We wish that more local establishments could participate in the event but we understand that there are burdens to entry, as it requires a lot of resources to keep the regular store staffed and running, in addition to donating money and time to an extra event. Though we have some complaints, the music and beautiful weather made a great day for eating pizza, and we look forward to Pizza Palooza 2017!

Pictured left: The voting table. (Photo courtesy of Kevin Wirth)

Domino’s Pizza most notably had a mascot with them. It was a hot day, and

// Akron Pizza Task Force - Pizza pals.

We want to hear from you! Tweet us @akronpizzatf

we couldn’t help but feel bad for the


Domino’s employee who had to dress up

What are your favorite toppings?

Hattie’s Food Hub opened a new location in west Akron on June 23, providing Akronites

food skills and awareness to the area, and to create jobs and work training for those with developmental disabilities. Headquartered in Twinsburg, Hattie Larlham is a nonprofit that offers a variety of services to children and adults with intellectual and developmental




square foot neighborhood market that will supply the community with local produce. Their goal is to work with local growers to provide


with a new addition to Northeast Ohio’s farmto-table movement. The store includes a 4,400

the dish S TA F F

Name: Jerome Nowden Favorite place to eat: Diamond Deli Go-to dish: Broccoli salad and corned beef sandwich

Name: Robert Dedinsky Favorite place to eat: Lockview Go-to dish: Black forest ham sandwich

Name: Jonathan Brunty Favorite place to eat: Parasson’s

Name: Douglas Stark Favorite place to eat: The Lamp Post

Go-to dish: Spaghetti with meat sauce

Go-to dish: Chicken Parmesan

Name: Vickie Harris Favorite place to eat: 3 Point Go-to dish: Any dessert

disabilities in Northeast and Central Ohio. (Photo by Patrick J. Warden / The Devil Strip )




food & drink

Locavore Lovin’ from the Oven

w o N

Lunch and r o f n Din Ope n


A SAVORY RHUBARB REVIVAL words by Lia Pietrolungo; photos by Paul Mangus and Lia Pietrolungo

Rhubarb lovers, rejoice! In the delicious wake of last month’s strawberry

Combine the salt, garam masala, sugar, cardamom, curry, and pepper (with more or less of each – spice to your liking!). Rub the

rhubarb pie, I felt that this savory rhubarb recipe chicken with the spice mixture, making sure to needed to be shared. After all, rhubarb season rub some under the skin as well. Dredge the is one to be celebrated chicken in flour. with as many recipes and flavor combinations as possible!

Heat the oil or butter (or a bit of both!) in a large, ovenproof skillet

After having spent the

over medium heat. Add

past week in Jamaica on a family vacation, I wanted to share a recipe

the chicken and cook for 2-3 minutes on either side, or until browned

that celebrates the flavors of the island. However, as I was paging through

and slightly crisp. Work in batches if need be. Transfer the chicken to

my Beekman Heirloom Vegetable cookbook, I came across a masala chicken & rhubarb combo with a red currant jelly sauce that I couldn’t bring myself to shelve for another month.

a plate and keep the brown bits in the pan.

To keep the island spirit alive, I enhanced this recipe with more spices (curry curry curry!) and the addition of coconut milk. The result is a savory & sweet flavor combo that tickles every taste bud just right! Feel free to add a little heat from a scotch bonnet pepper or cayenne pepper if you’re searching for something extra!

Add the garlic, ginger, and the shallots to the brown bits with a splash of oil or butter. Stir frequently for two minutes, until fragrant and the shallots are softened – about 2 minutes. Add the broth, jelly, coconut milk, and orange juice to the pan. Toss in some cilantro and bring to a boil. Arrange the chicken in the pan, cover (with either a lid or tinfoil), and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked.

Fellow locavores can find the staple ingredients While the chicken is in the oven, heat the for this recipe at the Countryside Farmers butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add Market at Howe Meadow and Highland Square. the rhubarb and cook until tender, stirring occasionally. For the chicken: 2¼ 2 1½ ½ 1

tsp kosher salt tsp garam masala tsp sugar tsp ground cardamom tsp curry powder

a few cracks of black pepper 3 cloves garlic, minced handful of cilantro, chopped 1 cup coconut milk fresh ginger, to your liking 8


bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

Countryside Farmers Market at Howe Meadow is open Saturdays from 9am -


12pm at 4040 Riverview Rd., Peninsula.

For the rhubarb sauce:

Countryside Farmers Market at Highland

2 1

Square is open Thursdays from 4 - 7pm at Conger Ave. and W. Market St., Akron.

tbsp butter lb. rhubarb, cut into varying lengths up to 1-inch or so (roughly 3 cups worth)

Preheat the oven to 350°F.


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 For details visit or 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

Music Festival Checklist Bring Guitar Pack Camper Van Bring AAA Card

Once the chicken is out of the oven, spoon the rhubarb over the chicken and stir a bit into the pan juices. Top with cilantro and serve with rice or naan.

butter or olive oil, enough to coat the pan ¼ cup shallots, chopped finely 1 cup chicken broth ¼ cup red currant jelly tbsp orange juice

Th eB

Bring your baskets and load up on fresh produce, canned goods, and honey!

Hit the Road & Rock on

food & drink

music & entertainment of the coffee shops in Brooklyn—coffee shops

Molnar met Macso at a farmers’ market, where

where Molnar began to understand a difference she learned that Akron had finally caught on to in coffee production from what she had learned the conscious coffee phenomenon. She took a at Starbucks. position working at Akron Coffee Roasters one day a week for the love of coffee.

Coffee Countryside AND THE

We speak with Countryside Conservancy’s Erin Molnar about food (and coffee) source and production and her role as Market Manager words and photography by M. Sophie Hamad


hio always feels like home. It’s easy to

and listen to cicadas. Erin Molnar, Market Manager at Countryside Conservancy and barista extraordinaire, lived in some pretty cool places and held some pretty rad jobs before making her way back to Akron,

As Market Manager, Molnar is responsible for all farmers’ market logistics. She’s in charge

producer and quality and intercultural products as an experience and something to enjoy and appreciate,” says Molnar.

of marketing, and in addition to community relations (letting people know Countryside exists and what they do), she communicates

Molnar moved to Chicago in 2010, where she worked as a barista and shift leader at

to customers what’s available and when, as well as the nuances of what to expect and how to shop at a farmers market. She teaches

Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea. Intelligentsia reinforced the industry standards Molnar had learned in the coffee shops of Brooklyn.

seasonality and influence on agricultural supply, for instance how this year’s weather patterns impact the amount of strawberries that are available, and the ebb and flow of different

“Companies like Intelligentsia have a much more direct relationship with producers,” says Molnar. “And they value the efforts put into

crops—how you can have broccoli in the spring, but not again until the fall.

the products and the sort of craft involved in transforming that from a raw product to a

Molnar selects and coordinates vendors and says that for a farmers’ market to succeed,

consumable product. It really maximizes the amount of pleasure you can get out of both

“folks really have to treat it as their grocery shopping for the week, so having product

coffee as a beverage, and also the experience of diversity and abundance there can make or making and drinking coffee.” break whether people will show up every week and buy as much of their food as possible from But Ohio and farming called Molnar back home. When she returned in 2011, she found that there were no coffee shops in NEO quite like those she had encountered in Chicago and Brooklyn. Molnar started working as a farm apprentice at Crown Point Ecology Center, and meanwhile worked as Assistant Market Manager for Countryside Conservancy.

that location and thereby contribute to vendor success.”

At Crown Point, Molnar met her friend Liz, with whom she took her interest in farming to the next level. The two friends started their own farm in Chardon, Little Bean Farm and Larder,

“If a bread vendor applies, first of all, do they have really good bread? Second of all, do we need more bread at the market? If we accept another bread vendor, will our bread sales

where they focused on cultivating legumes, mixed vegetables and flowers.

grow, or will we just be distributing the same dollar amount between three bread vendors vs.

“We are really invested in helping our vendors succeed,” says Molnar. Countryside has one application period, January through March, and they evaluate the applicants based on current market product diversity and abundance.

two bread vendors?” and then Cleveland, and then Akron again. Molnar grew up in Macedonia where her

Molnar’s coffee dreams for NEO came true when Rising Star Coffee Roasters opened in Cleveland in 2012. Molnar worked at Rising

Molnar also organizes all the performers, musicians, cooks, and special events (like

mother was a Montessori teacher and then

Star for three and a half years, ultimately taking

Picnic at the Park Day) that make the farmers’

went to college “in the middle of cornfields in Central Ohio,” at Kenyon College. After college, Molnar worked at Starbucks for 8 years, where her interest in coffee grew.

a position as Director of Retail Operations. But eventually family circumstances brought her back to Akron.

markets extra awesome. So if you see her at a Countryside Conservancy market, make sure to thank her for keeping it all together.

Upon returning to Akron, Molnar once again took a position with Countryside Conservancy,

Maybe buy her a coffee.

After Starbucks, Molnar took a position at Slow Food USA in Brooklyn as an executive intern,

this time as Market Manager, which is how

// Sophie quit drinking coffee four months ago, but

where the company ideals ran parallel to those

she met AJ Macso of Akron Coffee Roasters.

still loves the way it smells.

move back here, even after living in

big cities and working for big name companies and being a big shot. It’s good to come back to a place where you can get your hands muddy and stand barefoot in the grass

“The coffee shops and coffee community in Brooklyn had a lot of the same ideals as Slow Foods as far as farming and valuing the

Live @ Lock 4

Food Trucks The Manna Truck offers a variety of foods for every taste,

Krav Food Truck specializes in Mediterranean food, with

from Asian to Italian. Their slogan, “Feeding the rich to feed the poor,” reflects the truck’s founding as a partnership with

Latin, Korean and American influences. Owner Todd Berry is a classically trained chef who formerly worked in New York City,

a workforce reentry program. Sponsored by the Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry of Cleveland, the truck provides culinary If you’re planning to head down to Lock 4 for the Third Thursday training and jobs to formerly incarcerated men and women in Live at Lock 4 event on July 21, you might be wondering what’s the area. A portion of the truck’s proceeds are used by Bethel to feed the homeless throughout northeast Ohio. on the menu. Here’s who’ll be serving up some tasty treats:


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

before moving to Cleveland and founding Kräv. Some of the truck’s popular offerings include Korean BBQ pork loin and the Cleveland Cheesesteak.


food & drink

ap arnie’s public house


words and photos by Emily Anderson People love the zoo. I’m not usually one of

The whole night had a 80s theme, which made

those people. I get turned off by all young children and the overpriced, non-alcoholic beverages. That being said, I wasn’t sure if I was going to enjoy Akron’s Brew at the Zoo, but is an entirely different experience! I had

it even more silly and fun, and gave people a good excuse to get out their vintage skirts and headbands. Pictured above are Amy LiCause and Jeremy Baker in their gear. DJ Kenny Kidd was playing all the popular songs from the

so much fun! Being surrounded by adults and drinking beer the whole time was shockingly entertaining! If you’re into the zoo animals, this event is really cool because it’s held after hours and you get free range to wander around and look at the exhibits. There aren’t many people there compared to normal hours, and it really feels like you have the place to yourself

decade in an area that could have easily turned into a dance floor. Moves were being busted throughout the zoo all night.

when you step away from the crowd. I got an especially good look at the lions, flamingos, the popular red panda that looks like a raccoon, and some mating grizzly bears. It was great to laugh about the bears and make rude jokes without anyone grabbing their toddler’s ears

Co. I liked how they kept the selection mostly local but also brought in a few loveable names from out of town such as Bell’s Brewery from

actually be. There are a lot of beer events going on in Akron this summer, but none of them also feature up-close wild animals and an entire park to explore while drinking local craft beer and wine. A lot of people came out but everyone had room to park and wander

and angrily storming off.

Michigan, Leinenkugel’s from Wisconsin, and

around without being crushed together in a

The zoo sells tickets online and at the door, and they have season passes available that will get you into all 4 Brew at the Zoo events this year.

Shiner from Texas. This year, amongst the 10 breweries pouring beer, wine was also included for the first time from local wineries Nauti Vine and Maize Valley. If you drink your 8 free

small space. I will definitely go this again, and will probably convince a few more friends to partake as well. The next event is on July 14th and has a “Christmas in July” theme. Maybe I

Each ticket includes 8 samples. You wear the ticket around your neck and they check off a

samples and still want more, full-sized glasses of beer or wine are available for $4. Food

will see you there!

box each time they fill your cup. Most of the beer offered was brewed right here in Akron – from Thirsty Dog, Hoppin Frog, Aquaduct, Barley & Grail, Brew Kettle, and Ohio Brewing

trucks were on the grounds as well, and I don’t Cheers to you, Akron Zoo! know how anyone decided between Betty’s Bombass Burgers and Stone Pelican Rolling Café Emily Anderson got drunk at the zoo, and you can too! Follow her on Twitter @ohiobeergirl because they both looked great.

I really enjoyed attending this event because it supports a great organization, promotes our local breweries and wineries, and it gave me a new perspective on how fun the zoo can


Victor's Lakeside Inn Location: Summit Lake Address: 1326 Lakeshore Blvd. Victor's closed a few years back. It dates back to a time when Summit Lake Amusement Park was still in business. It sits right by the old trolley station, which is now the Metro headquarters. Again, I wish I had Bar Crawler time machine. I'd trolley to this place in a heartbeat. It's about the size of a Buick and probably had about a 40 person max capacity. I'm thinking after an exterminator or three, it would be right as rain. Probably pick it up for cheap too. It would be the perfect starter bar for one of you young entrepreneurs out there. Cater to the hundreds of Metro employees across the street and you have yourself a goldmine. This one’s a no brainer.


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


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 The first bar I ever frequented was the old Town Tavern on Water St. in Kent. I loved that place, but for some reason the bartenders didn't seem to like me. It took me a while to figure out that tipping was how these people made their living. I was clueless. I figured they got at least minimum wage like the rest of us. Boy, was I wrong. Being a veteran drink slinger now, I wince every time this embarrassing memory pops into my head. It may seem like a fun job, but more often than not, it's just a job. It can be very stressful on a busy night and a flat out bummer for your wallet on a slow night. Here's a little bar etiquette 101 for the rookies and the clueless out there. First and foremost, tip your bartender and well. I'm talking like 20% at least. This will benefit you in a number of ways. A good bartender will recognize this and will give you better service and will likely have your back if someone is giving you trouble. Speaking of trouble, don't cause any. We all can have bad days, weeks or months. Leave that noise at home. Bars are for recreation, not fighting. And for the love of Johnny Walker, there is no crying in the bar! It sounds heartless, but nobody needs to see your personal moment when they are trying to blow off some steam.

B.G. Bree’s 451. N.Main St. 234-678-3808

Caps Sports Bar and Grille

Dante's Gameday Grille

K.C.'s 3rd Base Sports Bar


1260 E. Tallmadge Ave. 330-634-1227

1019 N. Main St. 330-922-8344

1126 E. Tallmadge Ave. 330-633-6172

334 E. Cuyahoga Falls Ave. 330-920-9168


North Hill

Chapel Hill

North Hill

Chapel Hill

North Hill








Always Happy Hour



Almost always



Bud/ Jack Daniels

Bud lt./ Grey Goose

Craft Beers/ Long Islands

Bud/ White Russians

Natural Lt./ Crown Royal


Pool / Darts

Karaoke / Pool / Darts

Darts / Sports on TV

Darts / Pool / Keno

DJs / Pool / Darts


Bar Menu

Bar Menu

Full Menu

Bar Menu

Full Menu


Nino's. Night People

A travel agency

Somewhere Else Lounge. Building dates back to the 20's with a speakeasy in the basement.

Wendy's Old Fashioned Burgers



Tim McGraw meets Channing Tatum

Bradley Cooper meets Jennifer Lawrence

Joey Bosa meets Frank Sinatra

Rhea Perlman meets Robert Plant and garnished with Jeff bridges

Roseanne Barr meets Michael Keaton

I felt like I was surrounded by rowdy lunch ladies while being here. Can't wait to go back!

Some bars in Akron you can get four sheets to the wind. If you are looking for that fourth sheet, go here.

The last stops before heading South on the Y-Not Bridge, are St. Thomas


Hospital and this hard partying establishment. Coincidence?

Sports and friendly folks. A good combo.

Sports bar and neighborhood bar all wrapped into one.


without getting hurt, and witnessing the unlucky who didn't follow it correctly. Good: I was pretty shy before I started bartending, it helped me break out of my shell and learn to

Highland Tavern, Cuyahoga Falls.

talk to just about anyone. I've heard some crazy stories and met some awesome people because of it.

What was your first night like? I started bartending at a dive bar way back in the day and I was SO nervous my first night. We had a different mix of regulars from college

Where do you go when you are not at work? I don't go to bars much because I work most nights, but I love going hiking as well as hanging out with friends and family having bonfires and watching HBO series together until the wee hours of the

professors to gutter punks and everything in between. Some of the regulars had a tendency to get violent and smash things


up. After watching a kid get beat into a coma I was pretty much outta there. Best tip you ever received? This cute guy tipped me a man's

Do you have a signature drink or a favorite drink to make? What do you like to drink? We have a signature drink at Highland Tavern called the Highlander. It's a mix of Makers Mark, honey, lemon, bitters, ginger and mint, though

engagement ring one night years ago. He had moved up here a couple months previous to marry a girl and she ended up

to be honest I prefer it without the mint. I'm a sucker for Kentucky Mules too. You really can't go wrong with any

dumping him for another guy, so he tipped me his ring. We ended up hitting it off and about a year later he surprised me with an engagement ring of my own.

combination of bourbon and ginger.

Good, bad or both, what is the one thing you wouldn't have known if you weren't a bartender? Bad: The proper procedure - and many firsthand bar side demonstrations - in

// Sam DePaul, a born Akronite, leads a double life as a bartender and aspiring personal essayist/screenwriter. When not drinking craft beer or working, you can probably catch her joyously holding up a stranger’s day in public by petting their dog.

which to light one's "manhood" on fire (see question 2)


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


food Drink The easiest way to get the hairy eyeball from your bartender is to bark or shout at them. Look around you. Is there a number of people waiting for drinks? If yes, be patient. They see you and are trying to get to the patrons that have been waiting longer than you. Is there one opening at the bar to get a drink? Did you already get your drink? Yes? Then get out of the way and let someone else belly up. To quote F.A. Seiberling, "There's




no parking on the dance floor". And finally, If you walk up to a busy bar, please have some clue as to what you might like. That blank, 'deer in headlights look' on your face is only gonna make everyone wait longer for their medicine. Bar etiquette 201 can be contributed by you, the reader at The Bar Crawler on Facebook. We would love to hear your input.

Cheers and enjoy responsibly, Leslie Shirley Nielson "The Bar Crawler" Northside Saloon 639 E. Cuyahoga Falls Ave. 330-794-5229

Ozzy's Nottingham Pub 1390 Brittain Rd. 330-633-3670

Redstone Pub

The North Hill Pub

The Office Tavern

Windsor Pub

1194 E. Tallmadge Ave. 330-630-1094

353 E. Cuyahoga Falls Ave. Telegrams only

778 N. Main St. 330-230-6656

1322 E. Tallmadge Ave. 330-633-5211

Stop in and meet Tara and Hannah the newest members of our team

Try our new menu items Mondays

CuSTomer APPreciATion niGHT�

North Hill

Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill


North Hill

Chapel Hill










Forever Happy Hour


11am - 8pm

Bud Lt./ Crown Royal

Craft beers/ Crown Royal

Bud Lt./ Fireball

Corona/ Johnny Walker

Craft Beers / Crafted Martinis

Bud Lt. / Fireball

Pool / Darts

Pool / Darts

Pool / Keno

Pool / Keno

Good Conversation

Pool / Darts

No food, so plan ahead

Bar Menu

Full Menu

Bar Menu

Full Menu

Full Menu

Red Barn Restaurant ( I'm convinced these a- frame buildings will be around for centuries.)

The Wine Peddler

Built from the ground up.

The Avenue. Butch's Place. The Satellite.

Melrose Place Bar

Schwinn Bike Shop

Charlie Sheen meets Miranda Lambert and a hint of Jake-The Snake-Roberts

Chevy Chase meets Adam Levine

Stacy Keach meets Meg Ryan

Harry Dean Stanton meets Mama Cass

Harry Connick Jr. meets Halle Berry

Vince Vaughn meets Jaime Pressly

I got nothin.

The kind of a place that will drive you to drinking.

Easily the nicest joint in North Hill

Many characters have passed through the doors of this place and probably still do.

Wouldn't it be cool if they recreated the old Red Barn menu here? Add getting sloshed while eating it and I think you have some kind of heaven here that I may never know. Hopefully they read this.

I'm pretty sure this was the first bar in town to get on the craft beer bandwagon.

(continued from page 9)

Larry the Cable Guy on your wall?

pandering to the hateful, fearful lowest common denominator, that's what they're going to do. And with gerrymandering and all, that's not changing any time soon. If

TC: I want to be able to establish myself well enough to always have a platform to get my comedy out there, just to be able to keep doing it, and for people to keep caring. That's

TC: What do I HOPE happens at the RNC? Uh, I dunno… a meteor strike? I keed, I keed.

that sounds defeatist, I should probably also

ultimately what I want. Now I would love it

To be completely honest it doesn't matter to

note that I'm hopeful for the future, in that I genuinely believe in the trope of "progress happens one funeral at a time." It's my experience growing up down here that there are plenty, plenty of young Republicans,

if it also leads to me having other avenues (TV, movies, etc) for portraying the South in an honest way, and not through the standard "Blue Collar" format, as you allude to. On that note, look: I'm a comic, and those guys are all

me WHAT happens, I'm still not gonna be a fan of their team, ya know? Got a fair amount of distaste for all of their recent candidates, but now granted none of them terrify me with their ineptitude like Trump, which is saying a lot

but most of the ones I know are just ultra-

very gifted comedians. They're extremely funny

when you really consider the levels of ineptitude

conservative fiscally, or they are hawkish, extremely pro-gun, all of the above. BUT… by and large, they are pro-gay rights. They're not racist. They're not "moral" fundamentalists.

and successful. I respect the hell out of all of them as comics. Especially Foxworthy. Talking shit about Foxworthy would be akin to talking shit about Seinfeld, as a comedian. I'm not

we're talking about here. Now I would also love it if they didn't nominate Trump regardless, because that would signify to me that the party as we have known it is well and truly dead.

So I think as that generation moves into the forefront, we'll still have plenty to argue about, but the Hate and the Fear will fall way, way off.

going to do that. Now, having said all of that, if we can provide an alternative to their style and show people there's more to the south, then

What do I think WILL happen? I think Trump will formally receive the nomination and we all get four more months of pants-shitting terror and

Things are getting better. I genuinely believe that, and I believe that's going to continue. CH: If you had your druthers, how would this

hell yeah, I'm all for that.

confusion, at least.

play out? How do you hope your career goes from here? Does any of it involve mounting

well-known (and hilarious and on-point), but as #DumpTrump talk picks up steam again, what


CH: Your feelings about Mr. Trump are pretty

do you hope happens with the nomination when the RNC convenes in Cleveland this July?

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 $4 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) $0.60 Wings (dine-in only) Super Power Hour From Open - 8:00 P.M. $3.50 Well Drinks $3.50 Bud Light Drafts

HAPPY Hour Monday - Friday Until 8pm Mon - Fri open at 2pm Sat & Sun open at 12:30

549 W Market St, Akron Phone: (330) 376-8307

food & drink

The Wanderer Squealing for the Rubber Ducks words and photos by Holly Brown

The month of June has meant nothing more than sports for the entirety of Northeast Ohio. In one of those beautifully timed, yet

Pictured right: The Squealer in all

need to get. However, when I saw The

fried, drizzled with barbeque sauce, and sprinkled with shredded cheddar. I fancy myself a connoisseur of these kinds of beautifully gluttonous dishes, but this may take the prize of most monumental. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t slightly intimated. I played it cool, ordering The Squealer with surety and continuing to sip on my beer.

completely unintentional coincidences, this June marked my fist written endeavor into that beautiful place where food and sports culture meet. It is in this realm, particularly under

it’s glory.

tickets asks.

Squealer I knew it was going to happen.

the eves of baseball, that the quintessential American culinary tradition is simultaneously honored and taken to its limits.

“Yeah” I say, relieved that he stepped in.

“You know you have to get that, right?” Ryan

T minus 3 hours to first pitch, I am running down the sidewalks of East Exchange, ticket vouchers in hand, and hand in rain jacket sleeve to prevent any dampening of said vouchers. I don’t bother to avoid puddles because they’re everywhere and unavoidable. I am sad, but I am hopeful. If there is one thing I have learned about rain in Northeast Ohio, it’s that it takes off just as aggressively as it shows up.

“Great. These are first row, right behind home plate.”

With the world still looking considerably damp, Ryan and I head toward Canal Park, still pulling for things to dry. By the time we reach downtown, I throw caution to the wind and my raincoat in the trunk. I’m doing this with the rain’s supported absence or not. I march indignantly to the box office. When I flash my vouchers, the very nice holder of tickets asks, “Do you want any seats in particular?” Ryan and I instantly looked at each other, not exactly sure what kind of seats to ask for, having never been inside Canal Park. We both

It is at this moment that I realize I could get used to the perks of journalism. Instantly, thinking about this article makes me hungry and hot damn I am in luck because I am here to eat as much as to watch baseball. We head to The Game (the restaurant, not the game itself though that is also impending) for some much needed pre-cheering-and-beer sustenance. The Game is perfectly placed, as close to the confines of Canal Park as one can be without physically being inside. To my utmost delight, the rain retreated, leaving nothing but it’s smell to mingle with the light pink evening sky. The perfect night to sit just off the porch with the sliding glass wall gone and a pristine view of the soon to be filled field. A band played just feet from our table. For the first time this year, I felt summer in my bones.

shrug and mumble.

It is not often that I am able to look at a menu and know instantly exactly what food item I

“Best available then?” Nice holder of

Pictured right: View From Where I’m Sitting…

asked me, not directly referring to The Squealer itself though both of us knowing full well that The Squealer was exactly what he meant. “I know,” I almost sighed. Reading the description of the thing was decadent enough. Was I truly up to The Squealer challenge? Let us begin with the hot dog, it’s as American summer as watching a baseball game. Grill that bad boy up, throw it on a bun, top it with mustard, ketchup, relish and you’re good to go, yes?

the massive dog, however to be fair we also ordered mozzarella sticks. Belly full of endless hot dog delicious, we waddled into the park, beers in hand to take

Nope. The Squealer is a whole ‘nother beast, my friends. Take that hot dog, now imagine it half a pound, a foot long. Cut open that hot dog and stuff it with not only pulled pork but also cheddar cheese. The meat and cheese

our prime seats behind home plate. From this place, I could see particles of kicked up dust, hear bats crack, jeers and cries and yells of celebration and dismay. I could feel the force of fans behind me but before me was only field

stuffed dog is then wrapped in bacon, deep

and sky and game. On this June night, I felt simultaneously part of the field and part of the

The Akron Rubber Ducks have a new addition to the “Extreme Foods” menu.


When my Squealer arrived, I was ready for it. Fork and knife in hand, I cut into it, poised to indulge sporting event style and love it. Lord was I right. Cheesy and crunchy, with a tangy barbeque sauce interlude and that heart warming, belly lining delight that cannot come from anything other than that which is deep fried. The Squealer was what it promised: all of that in excess, a baseball fan’s dream. In one sitting, I could only take down half of

crowd. This was one Akron experience that I had longed for, and though the Rubber Ducks lost, it will go down as one of my favorite nights in Akron.

300 S. Main St. Akron Tue-Fri: 11am-7pm Sat/Sun: 10am – 3pm

a bacon-stuffed burger topped with Middlefield cheddar cheese, wine and gold slaw, and a championship onion ring on a Kaiser bun. The entrée is served with a side of fries topped with Salty Curry powder. The LeBlock Burger will sell for $9.75 and is available at Taters concession stand located right behind home plate. Pictured left: LeBlock Burger with a side of fries. Photo courtesy of Akron Rubber

// Holly Brown’s first baseball game was at Fenway Park sometime around 1996. She was much more excited about the lemonade than anything else. You can follow her on Instagram @downtownholllybrown. Food pics for the win.



| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7



music & entertainment AKRON’S MUSIC SCENE

THE AKRON SONGWRITERS WORKSHOP Comes to the Civic Theatre by Lois Elswick Are you a songwriter? Would you like to hear about songwriting techniques from acclaimed artists? You’re in luck — The Akron Songwriters Workshop will be held at the Civic Theatre in

Pictured above: Akron Songwriters Workshop will be led by nationally acclaimed musicians. Photo courtesy of Akron Civic Theatre.

downtown Akron from Aug. 9 to Aug. 12 with limited spots. This unprecedented event will assist both the novice and seasoned musician in taking his or her songwriting to the next level.

The Akron Songwriters Workshop runs for four days, with six hours of programming provided each day. The admission fee is $200 for all four days (including lunch), and the workshops run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Due to the exclusive

Participants will not only receive tricks and tips about songwriting from a few of the greats,

nature of the event, interested registrants are

but the workshop will also provide information about the business end of songwriting,

encouraged to reserve their tickets early by contacting Civic Theatre Office Manager Dylan Yellowlees at

including expert advice on marketing and publishing, as well as the ability to submit original work for feedback.

This special four-day workshop provides the unique opportunity to hear professional songwriters share valuable information about

Noted national songwriters hosting workshops at this event include Steve Bogard, who wrote several No. 1 songs for artists such as Reba McEntire and George Strait, rising star Danielle Howle, who created the Swamp Sessions and Grammy nominee Jamie Floyd. Local songwriters Joe Vitale Jr., Chris Allen and Bob Robb will also be in attendance to share their insights on writing, playing and thriving in the Akron music scene.

the business and provide one-on-one feedback to attendees in the historic and beautiful Akron Civic Theatre. In addition, there will also be cabaret performances each night by the artists showcased during the day. So get your songs together, grab your instrument(s) and head down to the Civic Theatre for a dose of advice and guidance from local and national acts. // Lois Elswick is a playwright, theatre enthusiast, music lover and a sucker for men who wear eyeliner.


The Akron Civic Theatre, located at 182 S. Main St. in downtown Akron Workshop passes can be purchased for $200. Passes are limited, so don’t delay! Contact Dylan Yellowlees at to reserve your spot. Find more venue information at





Quick and friendly service. This was a pleasant surprise. Had an isolated inside table for two with a view of sidewalk outside. Guacamole was the best we have had and chips were fresh. Not spicy and with an unusual ingredient that added crunch. The grilled shrimp salad with nuts was superb and just right for lunch. Fresh fruit added to salad was excellent and varied.

54 East Mill St. Akron 44308 (330) 762-8000 Hours: M-Th 11-10, F 11-11, Sat 3-11

music & Entertainment




å é

å If These Trees Could Talk

Dozen The Devil’s next to Musica). (If These Trees Could Talk: photo

event. Local artists entertain with performances

Saturday, July 9 at Musica, 7pm Since 2005, Akron’s own If These Trees Could

courtesy of the band)

Talk has seen widespread success. After the release of their critically acclaimed, self-titled EP a decade ago, they followed with three studio albums. The most recent album, The Bones of a

‹ Puddle Splasher,

in music, dance and more. Interactive art activities are offered to help cultivate creative minds. Children’s events kick off at 2 pm. Live

Curtis Cooper, Ulysses

entertainment The Del Rios, Shivering Timbers Sat., July 9 at It’s a Kling Thing! House, 7pm and Wesley Bright go on at 6pm, 7pm and 8pm, respectively. Admission is free. Alternative venue It’s a Kling Thing! House will Dying World (released June of this year), boasts be offering a line up of touring bands mixed with local acts. Located in a house on The some of the best selections of their haunting é Digable Planets Sunday, July 17 at Musica, 9pm University of Akron’s campus, the self-described and mesmeric post-rock instrumentals yet. The Keepers of the Art kick off their 2016 Music “Punk/Indie/Emo/Metal/DIY” music spot boasts quintet will bring their current tour home to Akron where they will captivate audiences from an impressive list of eclectic bands. This show will Showcase Concert Series at Musica with a the Musica Stage. Recommended: If These Trees feature New Jersey-based band Puddle Splasher; performance from Grammy Award winning alternative hip-hop trio Digable Planets. Could Talk’s new single, “Solstice,” streaming at Curtiss Cooper of Philadelphia, PA; and Akron Mary Ann “Ladybug Mecca” Vieira, Craig natives Ulysses. Doors open at 7:00 pm with Pre-sale “Doodlebug” Irving and Ishmael “Butterfly” bands starting at 8:00 pm. Tickets are $5 at tickets are $10 and available online through Butler have reunited, and nostalgic fans, TicketWeb or for purchase at Square Records in the door. Visit Square and at Urban Eats (located just Thing-House for more information on the bands, 90s-philes and even those unfamiliar with this group won’t want to stop swaying to the beat suggested donations, house rules and more.

ç Mike Forfia Quartet

of their lyrical, funky, jazz-fusion raps. Tickets are $20 pre-sale or $25 the night of the show

Tuesday, July 12 at BLU Jazz+, 8pm "Akron to NYC Sendoff Concert & Fundraiser" Akron-native Mike Forfia is gearing up for

and are on sale now via Tickemaster. This show is 21 and over.

a move to New York City to work with

The KOTA Music Showcase Concert Series is an


the revered Saint Peter’s “Jazz” Church, which is recognized in the Jazz world as a groundbreaking sanctuary for social change. Forfia, a talented bassist, will serve on the

inspirational and thought-provoking meeting

Nuevo Modern Mexican and Tequila Bar has live music on the rooftop patio every

media and production side of the well-known congregation. This “sendoff fundraiser”

Tuesday this summer, weather permitting, from 7-9:30 pm. Here’s what they’ve got lined up for the rest of July:

will highlight Forfia’s own talents as well as showcase his influences and inspirations. Three of his closest friends contribute their

JULY 12 The Stingers Soul Infused Latin and Smooth Jazz

JULY 19 Steel Hip Blues Band Old School Blues, Classic Rock and Jazz

JULY 26 M.R. James Marron and Kurt Reed, Flamenco, Latin and Classical Guitar Experts


instrumental skills as they round out the quartet. General admission is $15 with discounts available providing a valid student ID.

‹ Vans Warped Tour Wednesday, July 20 at Blossom Music Center, 11am A throwback to your favorite early 2000s pop-punk bands with performances by Good Charlotte, Less Than Jake, New Found Glory, Sum 41, Four Year Strong, etc. Also, note: Atreyu and Mayday Parade! Many bands comprise the lineup for this tour that has become a Northeast Ohio tradition. Visit for information on tickets, charitable opportunities and the Rally Bus transportation services.

‹ Jeremey Poparad & Brandon Coleman Quartet Thursday, July 21 at Pub Bricco, 7:30pm Head to Merriman Valley for an evening eclectic and soothing mixes of various Jazz-infused (continued on page 54)

of progressive minds designed to provide heightened stimulation through underexposed artists and their music. The focus of this venue is to socialize and entertain the masses through soulful meetings that showcase soul music and next level hip-hop music. The KOTA Concert Series has the ability to embrace any specific urban professional demographic, all while concentrating in a certain region/market/city. (Digable Planets: photo courtesy of the band)

(Mike Forfia: photo courtesy of McKenzie

‹ Dawes

Gretchen Pleuss

Beynon Photography)

Wednesday, July 20 at The Goodyear Theater, 8pm

July 21 at Lock 4 Gretchen Pleuss will be performing at this

‹ Shivering Timbers, The Del Rios, Wesley Brite

Do not miss LA-based folk-rock band Dawes at this beloved venue. Joining them is Matthew Logan Vasquez of Delta Spirit. Tickets start at

month’s Live at Lock 4 event on July 21. Check out her album "From Birth, to Breath, to Bone," which can be purchased on vinyl,

$28. Visit for ticket and seating information.

CD, or as a digital download at her website, The vinyl is also available at Square Records.

Sat., July 16 at Akron Art Museum, 6pm Akron Art Museum's public dedication of the Bud and Susie Rogers Garden. Downtown Akron Art Museum serves as the ideal backdrop for this unique, inspiring and family-friendly

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

(Photo courtesy of Gretchen Pleuss)


music & entertainment


Standing Room

Five Akron Area Acts You Should Know by Brittany Nader

å LuvAbstract Mark Anderson, a UA student known behind the mic as LuvAbstract, writes theatrical rhymes that accomplish more than making the listener bob her head or hit the dance floor. These are deep, heavy words that sucker punch the soul. LuvAbstract's debut EP, which dropped online


in June, fits into hip-hop's ongoing evolution into an artform with albums serving as sonic novellas that communicate truths across a backdrop of film-scoretype music. Pay particular attention to standout tracks like “Roses” and “Lovely”. Drop in on his YouTube for the "Universe" video featuring LuvAbstract spitting fire over a laid-back jazzy collaboration with with local players Brian Raglow, Josh Walker, Cody Mansfield and Dylan Hayden. Fresh off a show at Fool Mansion, he's set for more live gigs so visit for updates, music and videos.

ç Actual Form


What do you get when shredding musicians from bands like Ultrasphinx, Duunes, Six Parts Seven and Griefhound join forces? An explosion of psyche meets punk rock, the result of which pretty much guarantees an unforgettable set sure to stupefy your senses. Described as “Akron’s math rock dream boats,” drummer Ian Cummins, guitarist Matt Haas, Josh Novak and Jeff Vita make up a loud and unapologetic quartet that is best experienced live and in person. Actual Form will make a stop at The Overlook Venue on Aqueduct Street July 5 before heading to Cleveland for a rip-roaring set at Mahall’s Sunday, July 24.

é HolyKindOf Multi-instrumentalist J Bryan Parks has been heavily involved with the local music scene for years, currently utilizing his skills at Rubber City Noise and EarthQuaker Devices. His solo venture and passion project, HolyKindOf, has, for the past four years, allowed Parks to experiment with sounds, creating visceral “sculptures” with the medium of noise. Cello,


field recordings and vague compositions work to define HolyKindOf’s distinct sound, capped off with live performances unique to and written for specific venues in the area. Parks has captured his half-written, half-improvised creations on “STAY/SEA,” an avant-garde recording full of captivating atmospheric soundscapes accented with chopped-up sampling and crackles that result in a fully immersive listening experience. Check out HolyKindOf’s latest release at

è Neon Tetra Some may know Kristi Wall as a highly visible, prolific Akron-based artist. Others recognize her as the owner of Land Of Plenty, the Highland Square hub of vintage goodies, terrariums, crystals and other metaphysical artifacts. Wall’s creative inclinations run deep in this city, and Neon Tetra serves as her outlet for producing textures of aural beats and party grooves. Wall perches behind her laptop, mixer and digital turntables to release a mixture of art house, techno and nu-disco, serving as the perfect backdrop to make her visual expressions a complete sensory experience. Learn more at (Neon Tetra, Photo by Zachery Rodgers)


ê Eskimo Sisters Embodying all that is good about ‘70s-era rock, be it progressive or punk, this crew of Akron dudes is bringing unruly good times to the Rubber City. Tossing in a dash of funk and vats full of energy, Eskimo Sisters is proving itself to be the quintessential basement party band, sure to set the vibe for a fun and memorable night. The quartet is in the process of recording its new album, a brash-but-polished collection of melodic, finger-bleeding riffs and shrill singalong vocals. Stay up to date with the brand’s progress at or @eskimo_ sisters_band on Instagram. (Eskimo Sisters, Photo by Catcake Photography)

ë Rooster Jones When performers with more than 30 years of individual experience band together, magical

his . eath, inyl, bsite, ailable


things can happen. Rooster Jones is the culmination of decades worth of refined blues, motown, reggae, funk and jazz playing from some of Akron’s finest musicians. The expansive ensemble includes John C. Thomas on guitar and vocals, Paul Rolenz on keys, drummer Glen Beitzel, Marcus Lee on bass, Bryan Pugh on harmonica and Sausalito’s Dorianne Denard on vocals. Catch the talented and lively ensemble on the banks of the Ohio-Erie Canal at Lock 4 as part of the Lock Bottom Blues & Jazz Club on Wednesday, Aug. 3. Admission is free, and the show starts at 7 p.m. Learn more about Rooster Jones at


Highland Square


LINEUP Friday, 7/1 • 9pm – Midnight Dave Hammer Power Supply & Ray Flanagan – Blues Rock Saturday, 7/2 • 9pm – Midnight Twanglers – Jangy & Twangy Rock Sunday, 7/3 • 12 – 3pm Zach – Uplifting Indie Folk Friday, 7/8 • 9pm – Midnight DJ Mind-E – House Saturday, 7/9 • 9pm – Midnight Erin Nicole Neal & The Chill Factor – Blues, Rock, Pop, Jazz, & Soul Sunday, 7/10 • 11:30am – 2:30pm Jen Maurer – Roots Friday, 7/15 • 9pm – Midnight Ahi-Nama – Akron’s Only Live Salsa Band Saturday, 7/16 • 9pm – Midnight Umojah Nation – Reggae Sunday, 7/17 • 12 – 3pm Little Steve-O Blues Duo – Acoustic Blues & Rock Duo Friday, 7/22 • 9pm – Midnight Copali – An Original Instrumental Funk Fusion Saturday, 7/23 • 9pm – Midnight Nessa – Celtic Fusion Sunday, 7/24 • 12 – 3pm Turner & Williams – Eclectic Soft Rock Friday, 7/29 • 9pm – Midnight Jen Maurer Project – Zydeco & Roots Saturday, 7/30 • 9pm – Midnight Moustache Yourself – Gypsy Jazz Sunday, 7/31 • 12 – 3pm Anthony Papaleo – Blues, Jazz, Old-Time *NO COVER CHARGE HIGHLAND SQUARE: 867 West Market Street Akron, Ohio, 44303 • 330-434-7333

Photo courtesy of Colin Dussault’s Blues Project

music & entertainment

In the Crowd

Colin Dussault’s Blues Project does not disappoint, especially for harmonica enthusiasts

music & entertainment

News Brief

Episodes of “May My Stories Be Worn Like My Coats” can be found online at angiehazeproject. (Pictured above: Photo courtesy of The Angie Haze Project.)

THE NIGHTLIGHT VOLUNTEER GETS RECOGNITION FOR AWESOMENESS Akron Creative, Inc. dba The Nightlight is the recipient of a $300 grant from Westfield

by Gabe Gott


ith more than 100 shows scheduled this year alone, it’s easy to see why

was that each member was seated throughout the show, but that is not entirely out of the

Colin Dussault’s Blues Project has garnered the reputation as “the hardest working band in Northeastern Ohio.”

ordinary for a blues band.

Singer-songwriter Angie Haze, in collaboration with video artist todd v., is releasing a new web series titled “May My Stories Be Worn Like My

Insurance Foundation’s Volunteer Grant Program. Matthew Wachter, Westfield employee and a volunteer with Akron Creative, Inc. dba The Nightlight, was awarded the

On Saturday, June 4, the five-piece outfit, fronted by singer/harmonica player Dussault, performed at Jilly’s Music Room, and even

“Copperhead Road,” which they blended seamlessly into “Ramblin’ Man” by the Allman Brothers, to “Hang On Sloopy” by the McCoys

Coats.” The series — which is part reality show and part music video — coincides with and chronicles the creation of an upcoming double

grant based on his volunteer commitment to the organization. Matthew Wachter has volunteered 30 hours as one of The Nightlight’s

though it was the band’s second show that day, the audience would have been none the wiser if Dussault hadn’t said so on-stage — especially

and many others — pretty much the types of songs that you would expect to hear from your average bar band, only with a noticeably

album by Haze that will lyrically narrate the story of her life. “My songs are stories,” says Haze. “And each song on this album is like a chapter in a book.”

strongest volunteers, “even covering a few considering the first set that night was more emergency sessions when paid employees could than two hours long, and the musicianship was not be reached.” top-notch. In fact, the only aspect of the band’s performance that might have been a giveaway


Over the course of the band’s two sets, it performed a variety of covers, from Steve Earle’s

stronger blues feeling than most other versions. While starting out with mostly covers, as the night progressed, Dussault and company (continued on page 54)


Need T-Shirts for the summer? Stop by The Bone in July. Buy One Get One 20% off. 2721 W. Market St. Fairlawn, Oh 44333 Located In Fairlawn Towne Plaza (234)334-7484


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7


music & entertainment Some of the items were originally his, while others were donations. His collection kept growing and taking on a life of its own, and he

show Mothersbaugh and Beck at the Akron Art Museum.

thought that instead of just making an exhibit, it should be a museum. The Akron native said that he was ready to do something he was truly

A glass frame protects a pair of original pants worn by Rod Firestone of the Rubber City Rebels for only one concert. These are no ordinary pants, though. They are constructed

passionate about. Pictured left: Wayne Beck, curator of the “Akron Sound” Museum standing amidst his collection at Summit Artspace. (Photo courtesy of

“I don't want to go work for a bunch of millennials anymore,” Beck laughed. “I’m just too old for that.”

Where the 'Akron Sound' Abounds Pop-up museum’s contents will soon go global by Michelle DeShon


t is clear that Wayne Beck has a passion for Akron’s music history. One can sense it in

the way he eagerly points from photograph to photograph telling the story of the “Akron Sound” while listing names like Tin Huey, The Bizarros, The Trend Setters, Rubber City Rebels, Fifth Wheel,

Photos courtesy of Jul Big Green

by M. Sophie Hamad


Beck enthusiastically announced that the Akron-Summit County Public Library will digitally archive the contents of his museum. When the process is complete, anyone in the world will be able

to research Beck’s

According to Beck, his collection is unique because


it encompasses all of the “Akron Sound” movement.

“The ‘Akron Sound’

He said that this musical movement, which took

Museum now can go global,” he

place back in the ‘70s and

said.“The next step is to make sure every single button and

‘80s, was unique because there are so many little connections that link The Hurt, Red Sun Rising, Chi Pig, Unit 5, The Black Keys and Devo.

all these Akron bands together. The concept of the museum is to preserve

Beck brought his collection of the “Akron Sound” to Summit Artspace from May 19 to June 4 as a temporary pop-up museum. According to his archivist, there are approximately 400 items in his collection. Yet, Beck estimated that only 40 percent of it was displayed in the pop-up museum.

the legacy of Akron’s music history during this particular time.

tag and comb and everything else is archived.”

Beck was excited to show his Devo painting, by Akron artist Jason Scala, that was recently signed by Mark Mothersbaugh during his Pictured left: Wayne Beck’s pop-up “Akron Myopia exhibit at the Akron Art Museum. Sound” Museum at Summit Artspace. (Photo The painting is now irreplaceable because no courtesy of Michelle DeShon / The Devil Strip) one else in the world has the same one. The “It started with four milk crates. Now artist, who typically works in black and white, I have to rent a car to transport it,” added the signature red Devo hats for Beck. he said. Photographs hanging underneath the painting

‘Loud, green, and a blender mix of different genres’

out of inner tubes and rubber cement. A closer look reveals details like rubber valves and large staples.

M. Sophie Hamad: Will you be performing with the band at the July 21 Live @ Lock 4 event, or will it be just you and the BOSS?

Pictured left: Beck’s Devo painting hangs above photographs of Mark Mothersbaugh, lead singer of Devo, signing the painting at the Akron Art Museum. (Photo courtesy of Michelle DeShon / The Devil Strip)

According to him, the library should have everything archived by the end of this summer. The three-dimensional items will remain in his care as he searches for a permanent location to house the collection.

MSH: What kinds of things inspire you to write music? JBG: Life choices, especially the negative.

bubble pop like Aaron carter, or nsync. But now it's whatever usually something chill and groovy.

Other people's experiences (when my life is

MSH: What do you like to do besides

Jul Big Green: Depends on the money, haha just kidding it's never about the money. But now that my bands getting a little more notoriety I try to call them play when I can pay

dull), YouTube videos too (cus there's always something crazy on there). And topics people send to me.

make music? JBG: I'm really active. Skated for 10+ years, I like baseball, bike riding, getting lost on YouTube, going out of town, and kicking it

them adequately. Although sometimes I like to stretch myself and play alone. My summer 16 goal is to match my solo show caliber with that

MSH: Why did you decide to pursue a career as a musician? JBG: Music runs deep in my family. I've been

with 80 (gf).

of my band. (Which is ridiculous because my band slams)

fantasizing about performing since I was a kid on my Sony Walkman singing to old DC talk tapes. But it wasn't until I was in high school

your music? JBG: Anywhere on the interwebs. Amazon, iTunes, Soundcloud, Bandcamp etc. It's really

MSH: How did you and your band members meet? JBG: Easy. My bass player: is my brother.

that I realized God really laid something dope out for me.

crazy all the different avenues you can take to get music.

Guitar player: isn't my brother (haha). My rhythm guitar/backup singer is an old time family friend. My drummer: I met at a jam session in a parking lot at my brother’s

MSH: What should people expect at a typical Jul Big Green show? JBG: Loud, green, and a blender mix of


MSH: Where can people purchase

random genres. MSH: Do you listen to music to get pumped before a show? If so, what? JBG: Depends on the show, I used to listen to the opposite of what Music I was performing. So like when I used to do rap shows I'd listen to

JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7 /

THE Devil Strip |


Music & entertainment


KRISTEN WIIG From Saturday Night to Stardom by Chris Kessinger (The Film Freak)



\Many actors and actresses come in and out of "Saturday Night Live" with the hope of a prestigious career in Hollywood cinema. Some examples of successes are Eddie Murphy, Adam

Akron filmmaker Maurice Thomas talks about filming Urban Cannibal Massacre

Sandler and Will Ferrell, but the list of obscure names runs much longer. One aspect, up until the 21st century, has always been that women haven't gotten as big of a push on the show as men. That changed with the arrival of hilarious heavyweights like Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and, of course, the great Kristen Wiig. Wiig made her first big-screen appearance as a cameo in 2007's "Knocked Up,” and it's clear that she had the charisma and sarcastic, witty delivery to be a major presence in comedy film. In 2011, on the eve of her final season at “SNL,” Wiig broke through to the mainstream with a female-dominated ensemble in tow in "Bridesmaids." Ever since the success of that film, she has supplied film after film with gutbusting humor to give her fans an appreciation for the true art of comedy. The laughs may always be there, but it's Wiig's ability to adapt to serious roles that has earned her respect as a versatile actor among Hollywood's elite. With roles in "All Good Things" and "The Skeleton Twins," Wiig has solidified her name on the top of any casting list for future projects. Perhaps her most challenging role came in 2014's "Welcome To Me." The role brought together the best of two worlds — humor and performance — as well as raised awareness of Borderline Personality Disorder. Let's take a look at the film that earned Wiig's performance a standing ovation at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival:

she's going to do it. From swan entrances to dog neutering, she is going to introduce the world to Alice. But is the world ready for Alice?

Urban Cannibal Massacre (original title: Meat the Jones) is a 2013 horror film written

TDS: Which directors/writers have influenced your work the most?

by Jennifer Jeter and co-written by Dustin

MT: I’ve always been a fan of John Carpenter

Austen. The story is by Maurice Thomaswho also directed the film. With a new film in the works, The Devil Strip took a moment to pick Thomas’ brain (pun intended) about what drove him into the horror realm of filmmaking.

and Wes Craven. I also like Rob Zombie and Eli Roth. The director that influenced me the most is JR Bookwalter. As a teenager, "The Dead Next Door" gave me hope that I could be a horror filmmaker from Akron, just like JR. At a young age I knew I could do it because he did it. The drive and determination he had, still influences me. Whenever something goes wrong on my set the running joke is-What Would JR Do? JR would get the job done-by any means necessary. That’s what

Wiig's brave performance hinges on her ability to relate the struggles that Alice goes through without being offensive. What begins as a

THE DEVIL STRIP: Where did you get the idea for this film? MAURICE THOMAS: I came up with the idea for Meat the Jones aka Urban Cannibal

lighthearted comedy soon turns melancholy as Alice is unable to progress within society. The film offers a mesmerizing turn from Wiig that will leave you laughing and cringing at the surreal tightrope of bizarre that she walks.

Massacre in 2012. I’ve been a horror fan for life. I was turned off with how African Americans were portrayed in horror movies. I started searching for black horror movies and found out that the genre was mostly extinct.

influences me-let’s get it done and in the can.

Her performance is a tour de force of deeply disturbed narcissistic tendencies combined with an originality of delivery that puts her work in a class of its own. Wiig, with Shira Piven's precise direction, presents a protagonist that tiptoes

Even on the low budget side there wasn’t a great deal of movies. The movies that I could find, I watched and studied them. I came to the conclusion that if I wanted to make an urban horror movie, it could be nothing like the

worked on? MT: The most challenging part of this film was actually the production. We shot the movie in the winter and it was freezing cold. Most of our difficulties came during casting.

between a character the audience can love and hate at the same time. We learn so much

movies of the past, it had to be something new and refreshing. I sat down with my cre-

It was hard to find African Americans actors for a horror movie. Luckily I have a friend in

about her condition, but the film never presents it in a light of pity. Alice has a degree as a veterinarian and is a fully functional adult — with some kinks. The film respects her character

ative team and Meat the Jones came to life. There has never been a movie about a black family of cannibals. We wanted this movie to be tasteful so we made them high class cit-

Cleveland who happens to direct plays. I told him what I was going through and he provided me with a list of African American actors. The rest is history.

as a person, and all of these things add to the kind of depth that pushes Wiig's performance

izens versus the typical in-breeds or mutants that you see in most cannibal movies.

TDS: Do you have any other films in production or in mind to make down the road? MT: I have another movie Rhyme Slaya ready to drop. It’s a hip hop slasher movie about A



TDS: What was the most challenging part of this film? Was it more difficult in any respect than other projects you've

Alice Klieg (Wiig) suffers from borderline personality disorder, but she has what she

The film's script is a little jumbled, but there is great artistry in its presentation. The direction

TDS: Why set it in Akron? MT: I was born in Akron, and I love this city. I film most of my movies here in Akron. Most

needs in life. She has an apartment, a best friend and tapes of every Oprah Winfrey show.

tends to jump from one scene to the next without much rhythm or consistency for

people here know that I’m a filmmaker and they always want to help out. So I get things

hip hop contest with a record deal attached becomes a blood soaked splatter-fest as five

After winning the lottery, she also has 83 million dollars. What she doesn't have is an outlet for the whole world to know who she

its story, but I have always viewed this as intentional, considering the background of the main character. Alice is always jumping

like locations for free or at a discounted rate. My crew is also so small that we don’t draw a lot of attention while we’re filming so I

contestants are brutally stalked and murdered. You’ll be able to see it in October.. details soon.

really is. The TV station cuts her off when she tries turning her lottery announcement into a frank discussion of her sexual experiences,

from one topic to the next, and Piven's script does a lot of the same. It really presents the very depressing nature of this condition, while

don’t need permits, we just run up and start shooting. It would be harder to do that in Cleveland. Overall it’s just more cost effective

but with her money in hand, she's off to LA to trying to communicate to the audience a very convince two struggling TV producer brothers relatable centerpiece. Over the course of its 89 to produce her own TV show. Whatever it costs, (continued on page 53)


| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

to film in Akron.

Pictured above: Urban Cannibal Massacre Filmmaker Maurice Thomas (Photo courtesy of Ilenia Pezzaniti/The Devil Strip)





back of book

The Meaning of life

"Life Is a Peach, and Then You Don't" by Georgio Pelogrande Yesterday, I saw a grown man sucking his thumb while reading a book about Do-ItYourself Plumbing for Dummies. This got me

when you are very, very old you die. Not much else is known and so the human body remains a mystery.

and just took off out the window on the back

thinking about the meaning of life. What is life? What is death? Are we meant to know the answers to hard questions, including questions

Now you may say, "Hey Georgio." Then I would say, "What?" Then you would say, "Hey

of a beautiful unicorn. When the anesthesia wore off and my Uncle recalled his alarming experience, everyone acted like he was crazy.

about algebra or physics or history? Or, are we meant to only know certain things like

Georgio," only this time a little louder because you thought I didn't hear you. Then I would say,

Typical. If that story isn't proof that no one

primary colors, cooking, and trigonometry? To understand life, we must first understand that

"No, I meant 'what' like 'what did you want?' understands life, I don't know what is... Not 'what' like 'can you please speak up or move

bean rattling around inside our skull known as "the human brain."

to my right side because I can't hear so good out of my left ear...'" Then you would say, "Um, what about doctors? They know everything

Still, you may be asking yourself what my own personal philosophy on life is. You may be wondering what Georgio Pelogrande considers

The human brain, as doctors refer to it, is the engine that causes us to think, breathe and walk while it simultaneously pumps blood to our heart and fights infection. Seems like a lot

there is to know about the human body." But do they? This little story may change your mind.

to be the meaning of life. Well, you're in luck because I'm going to tell you right now. Here is my own personal philosophy on life: "Don't be a butt. Don't treat people like crap. Don't

One time my uncle was going in for surgery to have an impacted wisdom tooth removed. He

be afraid of dogs and they won't be afraid of you. Wait a half hour after eating before you get back in the pool." Seems pretty simple, but

to do for one measly organ... But what many people don't even know is that we only use 10% of our brains. This was a fact I often used in middle school to argue that my test scores were, in fact, good enough. I would assert that if I only use 10% of my brain, why should I be expected to answer 60% of test questions correctly in order to get a passing grade of "D?" Interesting. It seems the educational system is skewed against Fact Checkers who know the truth about the brain. Anyways, back to life. This is what we know scientifically about the nature of life and death. When you are very,

was put under twilight anesthesia which means he could still hear and see everything going on but could not feel anything or be attacked by werewolves. As he was under, he overheard the dentist and his assistant having a conversation about the human body, space exploration and medicine. He was able to hear them laughing about the "guessing game" they were playing as they tried to figure out what tooth needed to come out. Then, after they picked a tooth and yanked that bad boy out, they took off their wigs and played a dice game in the corner.

if you follow those simple guidelines things may just turn up roses before you push up daisies. I will now leave you with one of my favorite quotes about life and death: "For nary there be a reason not to strive to understand your own place in the world that you may not reach for the stars, dream the impossible dream, and not be a nincompoop your entire wretched filthy life." - Georgio Pelogrande Thank you and you're welcome.

very young, you are born. Life passes day by day Instead of playing for money, they played for like a movie and you get older. Then, unless you extracted teeth. Then a gremlin did a dance are historical medical anomaly Benjamin Button, on my uncle's lap, popped up onto the ceiling,

Catch Georgio most Saturdays from 8pm to midnight

(continued from page 52)

(continued from 34)

at Firestone High School, and my Aunt Annie

minutes, a lot of the film’s action happens in

famous and talented musicians for longer

Gustely was a guidance counselor at Akron

eventful spurts, instead of one continuous story. This kind of thing is likely to alienate some audiences, while offering an imaginative spin for others.

periods of time in order for them to give master classes for area public school students, orchestras, and bands. Various groups have also performed at local senior living facilities.

Elementary Schools. I used to visit every summer. Seeing Shakespeare at an early age, at Stan Hywet, left a huge impression on me as a child. I still love live theater.

One of the more surprising aspects of the

What is your favorite local cultural asset?

As a transplant, and not just a visitor---I fell in

film's reception has been the way it divides its audience directly in half. According to Rotten Tomatoes, the film currently holds a 73 percent “fresh” rating among critics but a disappointing

The breadth of visual, literary and musical artists that are creating in the community is staggering. The Knight Foundation, GAR, Mustard Seed in Highland Square, Blu Jazz,

love with Akron when I started going to the Howe Meadow Farmers' Market and then the Art Walk once a month. I met so many people that were local artists and artisans. I realized

46 percent among moviegoers. This is a little surprising, but I think a misleading trailer

Uncorked, Musica, Coffee Pot, The Akronist, The Devil Strip, SummitLive365, Stan Hywet,

what a supportive, energetic community existed in Akron. On a single Saturday I could go to a

suggests a different direction than where the movie ends up. If you check “Welcome to Me” out, it’s best to just go into the film blind. The film offers its biggest return when you know

Coach House Theater, The Civic, Arts Alive (I know I am missing many of them) and other local patrons that provide space/funds for these endeavors. Without this infrastructure of

farmers’ market, walk around the Ira Trailhead, see local artists' work, listen to an original band at a club and go out for drinks downtown.

the least about Alice and her complicated situation.

venues, businesses and nonprofits, there would Where in Akron do you like to escape? The be little to no platform for artists. Summit County Metro Parks is where I escape.

"Welcome To Me" invites you to a performance that will open your eyes to a different side of

When did you fall for Akron? I came to here to attend the School of Law at

Wiig's talents, proving she has conquered TV and the silver screen alike.

the University of Akron. My mother's family is from Akron. My mom grew up here. My Grandfather Gustely was a teacher and then

Why should everyone try your favorite local restaurant? Nepali Kitchen's food is delicious, inexpensive, exotic and feels like

// You can find more of Chris's weekly film reviews at

principal at an Akron Elementary School. My Uncle Bob Gustely was a guidance counselor

home, all at the same time.


on The Altered Realm radio show on

So close to the city, you are transported to small trails and beautiful vistas.

// Photo of Emily Durway by Emily Durway

2.3139 in x 12.75 in

back of book



Sorry, wasn’t expecting you.

it would). I did not test each sink and soap dispenser, but let’s assume everything works. I

Hey, Harry London. The 1980s called and they want their bathroom back.

expected/wanted a dish of individually wrapped Is this the first impression we want to make as chocolates on the counter, but I get that a city? Cream and rose-colored tiles? Boring and uninspired? There’s nothing in this women’s maybe there are health regulations. I just want chocolate everywhere I go. restroom to indicate that you are anywhere

Imagine this: You’ve just landed at AkronCanton for your important interview as

exciting. I want magic, kaleidoscope colors, at least an artsy black and white vintage photo of chocolates.

president of the University of Akron. You leave the airport without using the restroom and then To be fair, the bathroom works just fine and you’re like, I should stop at the Harry London has a row of well-stocked stalls. The space is Chocolate Factory and buy some goodies to decently sized and could handle a crowd from a share with people at my meeting because I am a professional person and that is what we do. Chocolate sounds magical. At Harry London, you pretend that you’re about to get into some magical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory type adventure and you’re like Helllooooo, Akron! But then you get to the women’s bathroom and Akron is like heh. Hi.

THERE’S A HOLE IN THE WALL: OB/ GYN ASSOCIATES OF AKRON--WEST words and photo by Marissa Marangoni It’s no secret that OB/GYN offices require bathrooms and specific bathroom supplies to accommodate patients’ needs. Frequent bladder emptying is sort of a united front on which many women stand together. It is also an unfortunate part of pregnancy, which is only convenient when you have to leave a urine sample at every single appointment. What is not always convenient is the collection receptacle into which you must empty your bladder. The OB/GYN office I was visiting prior to

chocolate factory tour. It doesn’t smell bad. It’s clean but doesn’t smell overpoweringly so. In fact, it actually smells remarkably like nothing. It is handicap-accessible. A changing table is across from the sinks, so props there. There are five sinks and four soap dispensers. The mirror was clean and didn’t have any creepy chocolate handprints (I don’t know why

containers. The west branch of OB/GYN Associates of Akron just knows that women, especially very pregnant women, cannot be expected to successfully pee into a test tube sized container and provide a generously sized, no-fuss cup for this purpose. The bathroom has a nice ambiance--fancy wallpaper, baskets for the empty collection containers, a single sink and toilet, hand sanitizer, regular soap, lotion soap, paper towels, and an environment that does not

The paper towel holder is a bit of a throwback with those stiff, folded brown paper towels, but I happen to like them. They are absorbent, so even though they are

The women’s restroom at Harry

easy to come by, especially because an industrial toilet often looks out of place in a home-y environment, but OB/GYN Associates of Akron has a toilet with a flush that is both powerful and satisfying. Sure, this probably means particles of urine specimens cover the walls here, but you can’t have a good flush and clean walls, so there’s that. The most interesting

(continued from page 50)

(continued from page 48)

the mood at the downtown restaurant. Pianist

gradually worked in increasingly more original songs that blended fairly seamlessly with the more well-known covers they performed. The band’s original material has more of a

musical genres lead by Akron-native and

and founder Alex Hoyt began the ensemble in Akron in 2013 after a move back to his hometown from Miami. Enjoy beautiful views on Nuevo’s rooftop patio and the tantalizing rhythms of this modern, blended Latin music

However, what really sets Colin Dussault’s Blues Project apart from your average bar band is the strength of the musicianship, which is most evident when the members take turns soloing. Most notably, Dussault’s harmonica playing is, simply put, phenomenal. It is worth seeing the band for this reason alone. // Like Mick Jagger, Gabe Gott was born in a Crossfire Hurricane; however, unlike Mick Jagger, he did not have the wherewithal to write a song about it.


and “cinematic and personal” music. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in person or by calling the Pub at 330-869-0035.

Harry London Chocolate Factory 5353 Lauby Rd North Canton, OH 44720 (330) 494-0833 MON - SAT: 9 am - 6 pm SUN: 12 - 5 pm

fecal matter) around. You really can’t win.

collapse? I like to believe the hole is the

originals, “Tidioute, Pennsylvania,” as Dussault explained, is an homage to his father, who played bass in several Cleveland-based bands in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s.

my visit, and everything was 70% off. I don’t know how much more excitement I could have handled. This bathroom gets 3 toilets out of 5.

by now you’ve read that air hand dryers just blow germs (re:

finding the toilet haven that OB/GYN Associates I think my favorite feature of doctor office of Akron houses had subpar pee collection bathrooms is a good flush. This isn’t always

traditional blues feeling, with a bit of a country and western vibe. One of the more notable

Akron deserve a little bit of pomp! But on the other hand, it’s not a big deal because this is a chocolate factory, Zippy was there during

wasteful, you can dry your hands with just one. Anyway, I’m sure

detail of this bathroom, however, isn’t the flush, scream “I’M-SO-STERILE-JUST-YOUR-PRESENCE- it’s the hole in the wall. Did a peeping Tom IS-SULLYING-MY-EXISTENCE” but does in fact feel clean with a touch of comfort to make one carve it in there? Was it a wayward door feel at home. knob that caused the

University of Akron alum Jeremey Poparad on guitar. Poparad is joined by the talented Brandon Coleman, who hails from Cincinnati. Both are heralded for their unique compilations

London Chocolate Factory is not as exciting as it could be, and visitors and newcomers to

entrance to Fraggle Rock, as seen in A Muppet Family Christmas circa 1989, but I never made it through for evidence. Check back next month for an update. Overall, the OB/GYN Associates of Akron West office has a solid 4.5/5 toilets from me. And, if you’re looking for a place to take care of your obstetric and gynecology needs, the staff at this facility is top-notch. Trust me: I just had a baby.

OBGYN Associates of Akron--West 605 N. Cleveland Massillon Road Akron, Ohio 44333 Phone: (330) 668-6545 Open M-F, 8:00 AM-5:00 PM

performance. Suggested donation is $5.

‹ Tower of Power, Get on Up Saturday, July 30 at Lock 3, 7pm Join “Urban Soul” group Tower of Power and Funk band Get on Up for a night of dancing

band. Reservations are recommended. Call 330-762-8000. (Ahi-Nama: photo courtesy of

and soulful vibes at Akron’s foremost outdoor music venue. Tickets are $10 at the gate, which

McKenzie Beynon Photography; Nuevo Modern

opens at 6 pm.

Mexican and Tequila Bar: photo courtesy of Nuevo)

è The Record Party Friday, July 22 at Jilly’s Music Room, 8pm “Vintage Pop Music Live!” states Akronbased cover band The Record Party. Dave

‹ R.ariel, dicpic, Voller Licht

Ashley (drums), John Doscher (guitar) and Tren Houseman (bass) offer an upbeat evening of pop tracks from the 60s, 70s and 80s. Visit

hosts two musicians and a performance art videographer. R.ariel is a multifaceted touring musician from Arizona. Akron’s Voller Licht for more information.

ê Ahi-Nama

will perform selections of their experimental electro sounds, described as allowing listeners to ignite “inward contemplation and expansive

Friday, July 22 at Nuevo, 7:30pm Akron’s premier eight man Timba band will set

realization.” And Clevelander Amanda Lee will showcase her newest intriguing musical/video

| THE Devil Strip / JULY 2016 • VOL 2 • ISSUE #7

Tuesday, July 26 at Hive Mind, 7pm Akron’s diverse community art space, Hivemind,



more coverage MATTERS

Get the whole story. WKSU 89.7 is your source for in-depth election coverage in more of Northeast Ohio (22 counties to be precise).

Celebrating 65 years WKSU, an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, is committed to attaining excellence through the recruitment and retention of a diverse workforce. 16-UR-00310-056

The International Soap Box Derby, Inc. is an Akron-based nonprofit organization that hosts the annual All-American Soap Box Derby World Championships.

Courtesy of PRL Photographic/ International Soap Box Derby, Inc.

You may have heard a few things about Greater Akron. We’re here to tell you, you heard right. Don’t miss the “thrill on the hill” when racers from around the globe compete July 10-16, 2016 at the 79th running of the FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby® World Championships. For more information, visit

Derby_DevilStripJuly16_AkronCVB.indd 1

6/21/2016 5:15:28 PM

July 2016 - Issue 23 - So Fresh, So Clean  

The biggest issue of The Devil Strip to date, chock full of fantastic Blimp City goodness from the Art Bomb Brigade cover to The Self Portra...

July 2016 - Issue 23 - So Fresh, So Clean  

The biggest issue of The Devil Strip to date, chock full of fantastic Blimp City goodness from the Art Bomb Brigade cover to The Self Portra...