I shared a portion of our babymoon staycation earlier this week here on the blog. Here’s how the rest of our time dedicated to exploring Northeast Ohio shook out…
WEDNESDAY Girls Night Out at Alley Cat Oyster Bar
Before I gave my husband 100% of my attention, I took the start of my time away from daily responsibilities by getting together with my gal pals at Alley Cat Oyster Bar. In the effort of embracing my latest cravings of super fresh veggies and gluten presented in any way, I dove into my orders of their Green Papaya and Roasted Chicken Salad and a side of hush puppies. While the food was tasty, my favorite parts of the Alley Cat experience were the views from the East bank of the Flats and catching up with friends. Fellow Clevelanders agreed: the restaurant was hoppin’ on a Wednesday night!
THURSDAY Road Trip to Put-in-Bay
FRIDAY EVENING Out-and-About in Cleveland’s East Side
After some baby prep tasks earlier in the day, we headed our way over to University Circle to check out a preview of The Cleveland Museum of Art‘s latest exhibit, Art and Stories from Mughal India. It presents the story of the Mughals Empire—and stories for the Mughals—in 100 exquisite paintings from the 1500s to 1800s. What I found incredible is that our hometown museum owned all of the pieces in the collection, but hadn’t had the opportunity to display all of the pieces at one time until now. The exhibition is on view now through October 23 and it is free to the public in celebration of the museum’s centennial year.
To complement the exhibit, the Cleveland Museum of Art has developed a CMA Mughal exhibition app. The free app includes audio of the exhibition’s curator sharing stories and describing paintings, hyperlinks to an audio glossary of names and terms, plus 100 tweetable facts illustrated with a detail image from the 100 paintings on view. The CMA Mughal app is available now for download from the iTunes Store for Apple devices and is the first in a series of exhibition apps that will be available for use after the exhibition ends.
After the special exhibit, we swung by Provenance, the restaurant within the museum, for a complimentary beverage (as a part of the exhibit preview) and a promise to return to check out their dinner menu. A few more moments meandering around to check out some museum highlights and we were off to our next destination…
A fairly new offering to the Cleveland scene, Night Market CLE proved to be a culinary adventure. Boasting more than 100 vendors, Hans and I walked up and down the lines of tents, food trucks and vendor set ups at least two times before diving into some eats from Siam Cafe and Li Wah. There really was something for everyone including family friendly entertainment on the main stage plus so many vendors to shop from. We arrived by 6pm and by 7pm, the area was packed. So cool to see so much of Northeastern Ohio come out to support this last-Friday-of-the-month gathering!
SATURDAY & SUNDAY MORNINGS in the Cleveland Metroparks
Time off wouldn’t be complete with out some Cleveland Metroparks time. Frank and I stayed close to home and took advantage of one of the organization’s newest parks, the West Creek Reservation. Other than it being close to home, I love how this previously unused area of nature has been developed in the past handful of years to welcome local residents into the Parma area’s Watershed area. There are a few spots along our favorite path where our dogs love to go to splash around — perfect on a hot summer days like we had on Saturday and Sunday.
SATURDAY NIGHT OUT in Ohio City
Like clockwork, a pregnancy craving hit (plus the realization that I still had my JM birthday coupon) and it was time for my Johnny Mango World Cafe & Bar monthly visit. Our leisurely dinner there featured two of our favorites: the Bus Boy Special (a plate of their Happy Beans, Veggie, and Grain of the day) and the Chicken Fried Rice (served in a traditional Khmer style, with cool vegetables sprinkled atop, and a thimble of fiery lime sauce on the side.)
And since most days these days aren’t complete without an ice cream run, a stop by Mitchell’s Ice Cream was only the appropriate thing to do. They had both their GLBC Porter Chocolate Chunk (which never seems to be in stock, made with Great Lakes Brewing Company’s Edmund Fitzgerald porter beer) and their once-a-year Chocolate Chip (made in honor of National Ice Cream Day) — it was the perfectly timed stop to their West 25th headquarters location.
SUNDAY FUNDAY at Cleveland Indians Game and Public Square
We rounded out the last of our staycation by attending our first Cleveland Indians game of the year (where we dug into some of our favorite local eats and brews) and checked out the new renovated Public Square, including REBoL‘s Smoothie No. 2 (perfect after sitting in the sun all afternoon long.) After splashing around Public Square’s fountains and taking in the city views, I knew we had made the right choice in taking our time off while staying close to home. The funny thing? I had noticed several others in my social media timelines had the same idea to take staycations that week. Perhaps it’s a moment of collective consciousness and rememberance on how lucky we are to have so much here on the North Coast.
Disclosure: We were invited to the preview of The Cleveland Museum of Art’s latest exhibition, which included a complimentary beverage at Provenance. My thoughts and opinions are my own.