Activities & Attractions: Suburbs West

HIDDEN GEMS: Cleveland AreaAkron Area

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


Beck Center

Beck Center for the Arts
Beck Center is a performing arts venue for both professional and youth theatre productions, as well as an innovative arts education center. The center offers programs and classes in theater, dance, music, visual arts, early childhood and creative arts therapies, serving over 60,000 Northeast Ohioans of all ages annually. (17801 Detroit Avenue, Lakewood 44107; 216.521.2540;


Boss Pro-Karting
Experience the rush of high-speed performance racing at Boss Pro-Karting. / Photo: Boss Pro-Karting

Boss Pro-Karting & Events
Got a need for speed? Boss Pro-Karting is open daily for driving and racing with state-of-the-art tracks and karts. Up to 11 drivers at a time, ages 14 and up, can take part in open racing sessions. New X1 Junior Karts allow kids ages 8 to 13 to race against each other in their own heats. (18301 Brookpark Road, Brook Park 44142; 216.938.6335;

Lakewood Park - Solstice Steps
Lakewood Park's Solstice Steps are tiered stone steps, nearly 500-feet-long. / Photo: Aerial Agents

Lakewood Park
This 31-acre lakefront park features all the amenities of a top-notch community recreation area—a pool, a skatepark, softball fields, tennis courts, sand-volleyball courts and a bandstand. But what sets it apart from others is the nearly 500-foot-long set of tiered stone steps that curve dramatically along an embankment above the Lake Erie shoreline. The Solstice Steps, which face north/northwest, offer spectacular views of sunsets and the Cleveland skyline. They’re perfectly aligned to the northernmost spot on the horizon where the setting sun sinks on the Summer Solstice. (14532 Lake Avenue, Lakewood 44107;

NASA Glenn Research Center Tours
Not everyone can be a rocket scientist, but one day a month, April through October, NASA Glenn Research Center is offering virtual behind-the-scenes tours of some of its most fascinating research facilities, including the Zero Gravity Research Lab, the 8 x 6 Wind Tunnel and the Electric Power Propulsion Lab. Register for a chance to participate! Space is limited and participants are selected at random. (21000 Brookpark Road, Cleveland 44135; 216.433.4000;

Rocky River Nature Center
Learn about the extinct species Dunkleosteus, the giant fish of the Devonian sea, at the Rocky River Nature Center. / Photo: Chris Light

Rocky River Nature Center
This Cleveland Metroparks nature center, located in the heart of the Rocky River Reservation, takes visitors back in time with exhibits on early inhabitants of Ohio—both human and animal. Learn about the extinct species Dunkleosteus, the giant fish of the Devonian sea. Explore displays about prehistoric and pioneer cultures. Climb inside HideAway Hollow, a giant oak tree play-and-discovery area. View the layers of a 360-million-year-old shale cliff from the center’s deck overhanging the river. There are also over five miles of hiking trails leading from the Nature Center to the river’s edge, a wetland forest, ponds, hilltops and ancient American Indian earthworks. (24000 Valley Parkway, North Olmsted 44070; 440.734.6660;

Serpentini Winterhurst Arena
Hit the ice any time of year at Serpentini Arena, home of the Winterhurst Figure Skating Club, Winterhurst Speedskating Club, Winterhurst Hockey Association and Team Ohio Hockey. Open skates and lessons for all ages and levels are available, whether you’re looking for a fun way to exercise or preparing for competition. Many Olympians have trained or taught here, including figure skating gold medalist Carol Heiss Jenkins, who resides in the area and continues to coach Olympic hopefuls from around the country. (14740 Lakewood Heights Boulevard, Lakewood 44107; 216.529.4400;

The bumper boats at Swings-N-Things are always buckets of fun for the whole family! / Photo: Swings-n-Things Fun Park

Swings-n-Things Fun Park
“How much FUN can you stand?” That’s the motto at Swings-n-Things, where you’ll find two Go-Kart tracks, bumper boats, miniature golf, mini-bowling lanes, paintball, batting cages and more. The café serves homemade ice cream, and the new Inside the Park TapRoom and WineBar lets grownups have their fun, too. Perfect for birthday parties, group outings and corporate events any time of year. (8501 Stearns Road, Olmsted Township 44138; 440.235.4420;