Activities & Attractions in Cleveland

 HIDDEN GEMS: Cleveland Area

ACTIVITIES & ATTRACTIONS: ClevelandSuburbs West,  Suburbs East,  Suburbs South

MUSEUMS, THEATER, OPERA, DANCE


Alex Theater (Downtown)

Located inside the luxurious Metropolitan at the 9 Hotel in the Gateway district, Alex Theater is an intimate entertainment venue featuring unique live performances, burlesque shows, independent film screenings and the theater’s signature Fabulous Game Show LIVE! series. Reclining leather seats with attached drink trays allow guests to kick back, relax and enjoy the show. (2017 East 9th Street, Cleveland 44115; 216.331.6309; alextheatercleveland.com)

 

The Arcade Cleveland

The Arcade Cleveland (Downtown)
This stunning architectural gem connecting Euclid and Superior avenues opened in 1890 as the nation’s first indoor shopping center. Financed by John D. Rockefeller and other industrialists, it was inspired by European shopping malls built during the same period and was nicknamed Cleveland’s Crystal Palace. The Arcade features a five-story glass atrium with ornate metalwork and is home to shops, eateries and a Hyatt Regency hotel. (401 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland 44114; 216.696.1408; theclevelandarcade.com)


Capital Theatre (West Side)
Built in 1921, this recently renovated theater in the heart of the Gordon Square Arts District shows a mix of mainstream Hollywood movies and independent films on three screens. Detailed wall murals, classical architecture and a restored vaudeville stage recreate the atmosphere of a vintage movie palace with modern amenities, such as a lounge area serving beer and wine. (1390 W. 65th Street, Cleveland 44102; 216.651.7295; clevelandcinemas.com)


Cinematheque (East Side)
The Cleveland Institute of Art’s alternative film theater, located in the Uptown neighborhood of University Circle, Cinematheque presents classic, foreign and independent films 50 weekends a year. The New York Times called Cinematheque one of the country’s best repertory movie theaters, noted for its exclusive screenings and local premiers. Screenings take place in a state-of-the-art theater featuring a 36-foot-wide screen. (11610 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland 44106; 216.421.7450; cia.edu/cinematheque)


Cleveland Cultural Gardens
The Hungarian Cultural Garden, one of 30+ Cultural Gardens in Cleveland, was formally dedicated on July 10, 1938.

Cleveland Cultural Gardens (East Side)
More than 30 gardens designed and cultivated by different cultural groups and nationalities line the scenic drive along Martin Luther King Boulevard and East Boulevard in Rockefeller Park. The gardens showcase Cleveland’s diversity and multiculturalism through symbolic sculptures, replicas of sacred monuments and tributes to poets, philosophers, peacemakers, composers, scientists and others who have contributed to world culture. The gardens are free and open to the public. Guided walking tours are offered June through September. (216.220.3075; clevelandculturalgardens.org)


Dunham Tavern Museum (East Side)
Once a stagecoach stop on the Buffalo-Cleveland-Detroit post road, Dunham Tavern Museum is Cleveland’s oldest building still standing on its original site. Built in 1824 as the home of Rufus and Jane Pratt Dunham, it is a designated Cleveland Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. (6709 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland 44103; 216.431.1060; dunhamtavern.org)


East 4th Street

East 4th Street (Downtown)
In the heart of the Gateway District, walking distance from the home field of the Cleveland Indians and the home court of the Cleveland Cavaliers, East 4th Street is a hub of lively restaurants, pubs, shops, a bowling alley, comedy club and more. Several of Cleveland’s most popular establishments, including Butcher and the Brewer (2043 E. 4th Street) and Iron Chef Michael Symon’s Lola (2058 E. 4th Street), draw crowds on a regular basis, but game days are especially popular. (East 4th Street between Prospect & Euclid avenues; Cleveland 44115; 216.589.1111; east4thstreet.com)


Edgewater Park
Photo: Cleveland Metroparks

Edgewater Park (West Side)
Want a beach-front view? Check out Edgewater Park, the perfect place to take in the views of downtown Cleveland, join a pickup game of beach volleyball, enjoy breathtaking sunsets and some Honey Hut ice cream from the Eats and Treats concession stand. In the summer, stick around for Edgewater LIVE on Thursday nights, featuring local bands, food trucks, alcoholic beverages and more. Open 6am-11pm. (6500 Cleveland Memorial Shoreway, Cleveland 44102; 216.635.3200; clevelandmetroparks.com/parks/visit/parks/lakefront-reservation/edgewater-park)


Lolly the Trolley
You can learn about the fascinating history of Cleveland while riding Lolly the Trolley. / Photo: Phil Squatrito

Lolly the Trolley (Downtown)
Learn about the fascinating history of Cleveland on a trolley tour, covering up to 20 miles and 100+ points of interest on a one- or two-and-a-half-hour ride. The tour begins in the Flats District and explores Public Square, North Coast Harbor, Warehouse District, Ohio City & West Side Market, Gateway Sports Complex, Playhouse Square, Millionaire’s Row, University Circle and Cleveland Cultural Gardens before returning along the Lake Erie shoreline. (Leaves from the Powerhouse at Nautica, 1101 Winslow Avenue, Cleveland 44113; 216.771.4484; lollytrolley.com)


Near West Theatre (West Side)
This community-based performing arts theatre located in the Gordon Square Arts District describes itself as a “grassroots, intergenerational theatre with an emphasis on serving youth.” What began as a summer theater program for kids in the late 1970s has grown into five professionally directed and designed productions a year. (6702 Detroit Avenue, Cleveland 44102; 216.961.6391; nearwesttheatre.org)


Rockefeller Park Greenhouse

Rockefeller Park Greenhouse (East Side)
Cleveland’s 115-year-old greenhouse, built on land donated by John D. Rockefeller, houses both indoor and outdoor exhibits featuring specialty plant collections, themed gardens and seasonal flower displays. Permanent displays inside the greenhouse include palms, ferns, a desert cacti collection, exotic orchids and bromeliads. Outside, the Betty Ott Talking Garden for the Blind offers a unique experience for sight-impaired visitors. Audio descriptions and Braille signage guide visitors through the exhibit, and a raised bed allows them to touch and smell each plant specifically chosen for its sensory appeal. (750 East 88th Street, Cleveland 44108; 216.664.3103; rockefellerparkgreenhouse.org)

 

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