Reasons to Love Cleveland that make me #HappyinCLE (aka WTForbes!)

So have you heard the latest news, as if first deciding that we have the worst weather in the country wasn’t enough Forbes had to declare Cleveland as the most miserable city in the nation as well. Forbes author, Kurt Badenhausen, is such a creative writer that his supposed-to-be engaging topic sentence referenced the Cuyahoga River Fire of 1969. Really Kurt, you couldn’t research a little further than that over-used piece of trivia?

Ready Clevelanders?….on the count of 3 stick out those tongues, thumb your nose and blow raspberries at Forbes stupidity. Then when you’re done acting the same age as Forbes, you can resume your miserable life, in your miserable affordable home, eating your miserably delicious locally grown food, watch your miserably talented sports teams, or visit one of the many arts, cultural or music venues that are so hopping and full of life that it’s enough to make any grinch miserable. Goodness, how can we stand all the vitality of this city?

While you’re at it, visit with your miserable attitude and share why Forbes really missed the mark. You can also join in the multitudes of Clevelanders who are adding #HappyinCLE to all their twitter tweets (See Forbes, how could so much chirping ever be miserable?) and let’s watch how great Cleveland is quickly become a trending topic on Twitter.

I wrote an article in 2007 entitled Things That Make Me Love Cleveland, and it created a bit of net chatter. I figured now would be a wonderful time to update that list with a few classic oldies, and a few new goodies.
Here’s a whole slew of reasons why I love Cleveland:

Our Arts Scene
We have grassroots organizations like Cleveland Handmade that brings local artists togetehr to socialize, build and share their art. We have cool art festivals and art walks like The Tremont Arts and Cultural Festival and Sparx gallery hop and both the Tremont and Little Italy Art Walks. Do I need to even mention The Cleveland Orchestra and Playhouse Square, not to mention dozens of smaller community theaters, orchestras and choirs.

Our Food and Drink
We have some of the best dining values in the country, excellent food, marvelous chefs, and a plethora of bars and lounges. Have you checked out Cleveland Independents to discover a new favorite lately? Or realized how many great microbreweries are right in your own neighborhood such as the newer Indigo Imp?

Our Sports
LeBron James (enough said!) but really, we could go on and on about the fans and talent in this city.

Our Philanthropy
Did you know The Cleveland Foundation is one of the five largest community foundations? (2008 Chronicle of Philanthropy) and the number of grantmaking organizations in Cleveland has more than tripled in the last three decades? It doesn’t mean that there still isn’t need in Cleveland (as their is everywhere) but it does show that Clevelanders open their pocket books to help those in need as much as they can.

Our Green Scene
We love our green in Cleveland, from the Cleveland Metroparks to the Cleveland Botanical Gardens, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and our Metroparks Zoo, there is no shortage of gorgeous green spaces to enjoy. The city is actually going “greener too” as evidenced by Positively Cleveland’s list of 75 Green Things in Cleveland.

It’s the little things that make Cleveland so great though, the things that apparently you have to live her to notice and appreciate, or at least have a really good tour guide to show you. Things like the pierogis at Sokolowski’s , the stunning patio and indoor bocce ball court at Stone Mad, a halloween tour through Franklin Castle, a night bike ride through the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, running into familiar faces when you are out and about the town, Angelo’s Pizza in Lakewood (simply the best pizza in the world), or watching a sunset on the rocks at Edgewater.

Cleveland Bridge Project, 2009

Parade the Circle 2007
Want to read a few more blogger reactions to Forbes apparent vendetta against our beloved city? Here’s some more great reading material to incense you even more:
Cleveland’s a Plum
Brewed Fresh Daily blog
Railbird J. Slim
Definitely check out this video from Something Dada as well!