We are rapidly approaching that “tween time” that starts with Thanksgiving and ends with New Year’s. It is the time of year that families get together and want to do something fun, unique and hopefully culturally uplifting. We are fortunate in Cleveland to have some of the coolest destinations. All you have to do is pack up the family and hit the road to these unique venues.
A Christmas Story House
3166 W. 11th St.
Cleveland, OH 44109
For many, “A Christmas Story” is one of the most iconic feel good movies ever. Portions of the movie were filmed in Cleveland and the “A Christmas Story” house is the place where many of the exterior shots were done. The house has been fully renovated to its original movie glory. Learn little-known facts about the movie and touch various items associated with the film (even the leg lamp “Major Award”). After the tour, stop by the Museum across the street to look at original movie props and vintage signs along with a Thomas Kinkaid original painting and be sure to stop by the gift shop where you can purchase “Anything A Christmas Story.”
Cleveland Museum of Art
11150 E. Blvd.
Cleveland, OH 44106
There is always something going on at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Right now the featured exhibits are “The Netherlandish Miniatures 1260-1550″ through December 7, 2014; “Floral Delight: Textiles From Islamic Lands” through June 28, 2015; “The Believable Lie: Heinecken, Polke and Feldman” through November 30, 2014; “Forbidden Games: Surrealist and Modernist Photography” through January 11, 2015; and “Painting The Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse” through January 3, 2015. Be sure to stop by the new Provenance Café for a bite to eat as well as the gift shop for truly unusual and art-themed items. Admission is free except for special programs (see website for details).
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
1100 E. 9th St.
Cleveland, OH 44114
Come to the epicenter of Rock and Roll history. With hundreds of unique and fascinating exhibits on seven floors, one day may not be enough to see it all. Currently featured is “Common Ground: The Music Festival Experience” that will be at the museum until January 31, 2015. See the gear and costumes as well as become immersed in a audio/video experience that will blow your mind. Also on exhibit is “The Beatles” with one of the largest collections of Beatle ephemera ever assembled.
International Women’s Air Space Museum
Burke Lakefront Airport
1501 N. Marginal Road
Cleveland, OH 44114
Housed in the entrance area and halls of Burke Lakefront Airport (if you ever tailgated at Burke for a Browns game you know exactly where this is), this fascinating collection of aeronautical history traces the female heroes of aviation history from its beginnings with the Wright brothers’ sister Katherine (who assisted them in many ways including traveling to Europe with them) through the war years up to modern female astronauts.
Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland
11400 Euclid Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44106
Located just down the street from Severance Hall, MOCA’s building itself could be considered a work of contemporary art. Currently on exhibit is “Ferran Adrià: Notes on Creativity” which studies the culinary process of the man considered to be the world’s greatest chef. The exhibit comes from a successful run in New York and focuses on his visualization and drawing practices of the master through photos, sketches, wall graphics, framed prints, notebooks and plasticine food models.
Also at the Museum will be the works of ceramicist Kirk Mangus in “Kirk Mangus: Things Love” that highlight the career of this internationally known artist who was a dedicated teacher and mentor at Kent State University for 30 years. Examples of Mangus’ work will focus on his playful gestures of roughhewn forms and experimental glazing that has been the influence to countless artists in the Northeast Ohio region. Both exhibits will be at the Museum through January 18, 2015.
Mark Horning is a freelance writer covering all things Cleveland. His work can be found on Examiner.com.