know before you go: PlayhouseSquare’s Jump Back Ball

There are many signs around Cleveland that spring is on its way.  Maybe you notice them while driving through the Metroparks, or how people slowly start to come out of hibernation. For me, that first signal of spring is the anticipation of another Jump Back Ball, hosted by PlayhouseSquare’s Partners.

I’ve attended this event in 2013 and in 2011, and been kept up-to-date on the plans for this year by the kind crew at PlayhouseSquare as well as a few of the Partners themselves. So without more hold up, here’s what you should know before you go to the 2014 Jump Back Ball:

Jump Back Ball

Pre-game for the party — by taking it easy.

This tip comes from Amanda at Clue Into Cleveland, a Jump Back Ball veteran.  Sure, the event is on a Saturday, so you might be tempted to do a bunch of errands, clean your house or take a three hour yoga workshop (no, just me?) earlier that day. Just remember that you’ll be partying the night away so you’ll want to save some energy. Why not catnap instead?

Eat up the food by some of Cleveland’s finest culinary minds.

If you treated yourself to VIP tickets, Dante Boccuzzi has a lovely spread in store for you in the Palace Theatre during the early hours of the event.  (Check out Dante on Fox 8 promoting the event here - and yes, I will be making that polenta recipe at home.) On the main stage, Driftwood Restaurant Group – lead by NEO favorites Scott Kuhn and Chris Hodgson – is ready to treat you to quite the meal. We’re going to eat so well on Saturday, so maybe sneak in some cardio on Friday!  

Tap into your inner actor and own center stage.

This is your opportunity to see what the view of the State Theatre looks like from the main stage – one of my favorite component of galas held at PlayhouseSquare. Upon arrival to the main event, head straight into the theater and right up those stairs to bask in the stage lights while sipping your martini (shaken, not stirred, OF COURSE) with your fellow party go-ers.

Take time to enjoy the custom made scenery. 

Volunteers deck out the theatre spaces with decorations that rival professional set designs. It’s one of my favorite parts of how their supporters pull together to create a unique event while getting in touch with their artistic sides. Again, head over to Clue Into Cleveland for a sneak peek on this year’s decor.

Admire some fun fashions and charactered costumes.

Even this yoga pants enthusiast buckled down and found a special outfit for a night of dressing up – thanks to the non-profit for the shout out in this post this week and for sharing my Instagram photo. It’s not too late for you to jump in on the costumed fun: here’s another PlayhouseSquare blog post with some ideas you can still pull off.

jump back ball sparkle

There’s a bar in the ladies’ restroom.

You’ll thank me for this when the lines at the main stage are a bit longer then the ones for the restroom stalls. I have no idea if there’s one in the men’s. Perhaps this year I should have Hans report back, ha!

Bring your dancing shoes.

…because you’ll be dancing all night to the sounds of Your Villain My Hero on the main stage and Pop Rocks in the lobby towards the end of the evening. Also because who doesn’t love a good dance party?!

Find yourself an invite to a JBB after party.

Just cause the ticket says the event goes until 12AM doesn’t mean that the party ends. Make some friends and before you know it, you might be somewhere else other than home by 12:30!

Still looking for more tips? Check out PlayhouseSquare’s first timers guide which includes all the important things you need to know. Stay up-to-date with all of their happenings and events – follow PlayhouseSquare on Facebook, on Twitter at @playhousesquare, on Instagram at @playhousesquare or by searching the hashtag #JBB23.

So the big question: who will I see this Saturday night at JBB23?  

Disclosure: I was asked by PlayhouseSquare to serve as an official blogger for the 2014 Jump Back Ball event and to help promote the event and related happenings. In exchange for sharing  information and purchasing one event ticket, I will receive one complimentary ticket to the February 22, 2014 event. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

know before you go: Cleveland Zoological Society’s Animal Attractions

As a nearby resident of one of CLE’s favorite attractions, I enjoy serving as one of the Cleveland Zoological Society’s bloggers every year. And between blogging for their wonderful events and even working for an organization that hosts an annual event at the Zoo, it feels like I should be paying them rent some times!!

I’ll be moving back in very soon as the Cleveland Zoological Society’s Animal Attractions is less than two weeks away on Thursday, February 6th – inside the Zoo’s RainForest. And after attending in 2012 and 2013, here’s what you should know before you go

know before you go animal attractions

Be ready to eat earlier in the evening.

This year’s Animal Attractions food vendors include:

  • AMP 150
  • Cleveland Cupcake Company
  • Cork & Cleaver Social Kitchen
  • Creekside Restaurant & Bar
  • Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse
  • Great Lakes Brewing Company
  • House of Blues Cleveland
  • Rosander Event Kitchen
  • Vitamix
  • Whole Foods Market Cedar Center

…but be ready to eat in the 6 o’clock hour if you can get their after work in time. The Zoological staff have plenty of other surprises up their sleeves for the evening – you wouldn’t want to be distracted from all the fun!

AMP150 short rib

AMP 150′s short rib offering from the 2013 event. (I might have gone back for seconds… and considered thirds…)

The food and beverage is located in more than one spot – and on more than one floor.

From 6-9pm, guest will enjoy all those restaurant offerings, an open bar and Jacob’s Creek wine tastings. But don’t assume just because there’s a great set up in the cafe area that that means that’s the only spot to find food and beverage. Plenty of those vendors are scattered in the exhibits. So grab a plate and/or a glass to start, then start to wander around!

Get ready to learn something too.

There will also be the opportunity to get to know the Rainforest’s and Zoo’s animal inhabitants, including the following Zoo employees and their presentations:

  • Andi Kornak with 50 Shades of Grey – Part II (all about the elephants)
  • Travis Vineyard with Bear Foot and Pregnant (all about the bears)
  • Jim Nemet with That’s the Way I like It (all about the various education department animals)

Dress appropriately…

…you will be in a Rainforest after all! The event is business casual, so a layer under that suit jacket might not be a bad idea. Don’t forget that it’s 80 degrees inside!

Tickets are still available!

Animal Attractions tickets are $60 for Zoo members and $65 for non-members. Since alcohol is served, you must be 21 or older to attend. Monies raised will benefit the Cleveland Zoological Society and its ability to continue to give Clevelanders a wonderful place to visit.

Purchase tickets at before they sell out!

Stay up-to-date with all of the Zoo Society’s happenings and events – we’ll be talking about Twlight at the Zoo and Night at the Zoovies before you know it…

Disclosure: I was offered two media passes to Animal Attractions in return for sharing this information. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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events for you to enjoy around Greater Cleveland in September 2013

Hello September – it’s always lovely to see you. Let’s see how you’ll keep Clevelanders busy this month…


#5TweetUp with WEWS NewsChannel 5 and GV Art + Design

  • Thursday, September 5 from 6PM to 8PM
  • at GV Art + Design (17413 Detroit Ave, Lakewood, Ohio)
  • Cost: FREE, and all in attendance will be entered in a drawing for giveaways!
  • More information is available at the Facebook event page.


MIX: Form 

  • Friday, September 6 from 5PM-9PM
  • at the Cleveland Museum of Art in University Circle
  • Explore the concept of form in sculpture, theater, and paper. Take in the museum’s gorgeous south terrace during fall, as the event goes outside one last time this year (weather dependent!) with a live performance from dynamic, eleven-piece Brooklyn-based funk collective MOKAAD.
  • COST: Advance tickets are $8, day-of $10. Members of CMA are FREE!
  • Visit for more information, or visit the Facebook event page.

Pandemonium 2013: Shine - to benefit Cleveland Public Theatre

  • Saturday, September 7 from 7PM – 12AM
  • at Cleveland Public Theatre (6415 Detroit Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44102) 
  • Cost: $135 per person. To purchase tickets for Pandemonium 2013: Shine go online at or call 216.631.2727 x 205
  • More information is available at the Facebook event page.

Cleveland Public Theatre Shine

Taste of the Brownsto benefit the Cleveland Foodbank

  • Monday, September 9 from 6PM – 9PM
  • at FirstEnergy Stadium (100 Alfred Lerner Way, Cleveland, OH 44114)
  • Cost: $175 for general admission, $250 for VIP Lounge tickets. Valet parking and a commemorative wine glass are offered free of charge to all guests.
  • To purchase tickets, click here or call 216-738-2046. Tickets will also be available at the door.

3rd Annual Parma Hospital 5K RUN & 1 Mile Walk - proceeds benefit the hospital’s community wellness activities

  • Saturday, September 14 – race starts at 8:30AM
  • At Parma General Community Hospital (at the Medical Arts Center, 46115 Powers Blvd, Parma, OH 44129)
  • Cost: $20 in advance; day of registration is $25
  • Register online at

Locavore - to benefit the National MS Society’s Buckeye Chapter

  • Friday, September 27 starting at 6:00PM
  • at Windows on the River in Cleveland
  • Restaurants include AMP150, Lilly Handmade Chocolate, Momocho, Mitchell’s and Cork & Cleaver Social Kitchen
  • Cost: start at $60 per person (or check out this blog later this week for a chance to win tickets to this event!)
  • More information at the event website.

September is National Yoga Month

Yoga Rocks the Park Cleveland‘s summer season continues on Saturday, September 7 and Sunday, September 22 with 10AM classes in Tremont’s Lincoln Park. More information on the event website.

yoga rocks the park cleveland

Nishkama Yoga Workshops and Events – in Independence – register at the MINDBODY website:

  • Labor Day Class Pass Sale – on Sunday 9/1 and Monday 9/2: save 10% off 5, 10 or 20 class passes – purchase online at the MINDBODY website or in the studio.
  • NEW CLASS ADDITION: Our Friday night 5:45PM Nishkama Vinyasa class returns with Kevin Jones in September.

ATHLETA COMPLIMENTARY COMMUNITY CLASSES – at Beachwood Place in Beachwood on Cedar Road – more information here:

  • Sunday, September 1 - with Beth Trecasa for a two hour  Basics Workshop at 10:00AM
  • Saturday, September 7 – with Rosey Holman for a 60 minute all-levels class at 9:00AM
  • Saturday, September 14 – with Angela Hess for a 60 minute all-levels class at 9:00AM
  • Sunday, September 15 - with Alicia Hansen – that’s me! - for a 90 minute Basics Workshop at 10:30AM
  • Saturday, September 21 – with Kevin Jones for a 60 minute all-levels class at 9:00AM
  • Saturday, September 28- with Alicia Hansen – that’s me! - for a 60 minute all-levels class at 9:00AM


  • Friday, September 13 from 7:30PM to 9:30PM
  • at Cleveland Yoga Uptown (at 11461 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, Ohio 44106)
  • Cost: $20 per person for this part workshop / part yoga flow experience!
  • More information at the Facebook event page.


Event Expo - Wednesday, October 2 - at House of Blues Cleveland in downtown Cleveland - more information available at

Great Lakes Theater Social Media Night - Friday, October 4 – at the Hanna Theatre in downtown Cleveland – more information to come soon!

Rock ‘n’ Roll Cleveland Half Marathon – Sunday, October 6 – in and around downtown Cleveland – more information at the event website.

L’Amour du Vin - a benefit for the Arthritis Foundation, Great Lakes Region, Northeastern Ohio - Thursday, October 10 -at Avon Oaks Country Club - for more information at

What Northeastern Ohio events are you looking forward to in September 2013?

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Disclosure: Photos sourced from organizations referenced in the graphic. I was offered media passes to some (but not all) of these events, work as a Yoga Teacher at Nishkama Yoga, work at the local office of the Arthritis Foundation and was provided this information to share as an FYI.  As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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