LAWG Week: There is so much to see and do in Cleveland, you might want to stay a few extra days by Clara Pelfrey

Hello!  I’m Clara Pelfrey, a native Clevelander, a board member of the Ohio Program Evaluators Group and a member of the Local Arrangements Working Group for Evaluation 2018. I’d like to welcome you to a week of blogs about evaluation in Cleveland as well as tell you about my fair city and the things you can see and do. For discounts, visit the Evaluation 2018 website.

Cleveland skyline at night
Image Credit: Carlos Javier via Flickr

Rad Resources:

Arts & Culture.  The Cleveland Museum of Art is free to visit and has one of the world’s best collections. While you’re there you can stroll around the Wade Lagoon and admire Rodin’s “The Thinker”. The Cleveland Museum of Natural History has exhibits from dinosaurs to diamonds and don’t miss the outdoor Ralph Perkins II Wildlife Center & Woods Garden, a wonderful outdoor exhibit with live native animals that can climb through catwalks above your head. Cleveland’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) is free on the first Saturday of the month. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (aka the “Rock Hall”) has Elvis Presley’s motorcycle and Michael Jackson’s white glove and you can be a pinball wizard at the Rock & Pinball interactive exhibit. If you’re bringing your children, you’ll love the Great Lakes Science Center with its myriad of interactive exhibits, polymer fun house and IMAX theater. Theatergoers, be sure to catch one of the many shows at Playhouse Square, discounted for AEA. For classical music lovers, visit Severance Hall to experience the world-renowned Cleveland Orchestra for “Gerstein plays Rachmaninoff”.

Nature and the Outdoors. Immerse yourself in the Madagascar or Costa Rica habitats at the Cleveland Botanical Gardens.  Lakeview Cemetery is an outdoor museum, where you can visit President James A. Garfield’s Memorial and see breathtaking Tiffany glass in the Wade Memorial Chapel. For hiking or biking, be sure to visit the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, with its vintage engine and cars, passes old lumber and grain mills, historic villages, and art exhibits as it chugs through the valley along the Towpath Trail, a former stretch of the Ohio and Erie Canal. Don’t forget the awesome Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

Totally unique.  The Victorian-era Old Arcade dates from 1890 and was the first indoor shopping center in America. The West Side Market is one of the oldest continuously operating food markets in the country. Visit the house where “A Christmas Story” was filmed in Tremont.

Food, drink, fun. The Jack Casino is walking distance from the convention. There are many restaurants on the east bank of the Cuyahoga river (aka “The Flats”), Downtown on pedestrian-friendly East 4th street or on West 3rd street.  Other places with lots of character and many restaurants include the Coventry Village area in Cleveland Heights or Ohio City and Tremont, which are on the west bank of the  Cuyahoga River, where Irish immigrants settled after helping build the Ohio & Erie Canal. If you’re looking for microbreweries, try the Great Lakes Brewing Company, the first microbrewery in Ohio.


We’re looking forward to the fall and the Evaluation 2018 conference all this week with our colleagues in the Local Arrangements Working Group (LAWG). Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to contribute to aea365? Review the contribution guidelines and send your draft post to

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