Pop Up Pearl on May 19th

Old Brooklyn’s historic downtown district will get a boost on Saturday, May 19th, when Pop UP Pearl returns for its second year. The event will be even bigger this year with many more shops and street vendors plus live musical entertainment and lots of food! It will start at noon and run until dusk. Pop UP Pearl will feature local artists and entertainers, craft vendors and temporary bike lanes on parts of Pearl Rd. Confirmed musicians include Frankie Starr, Rick McKinney, Backtrax, Victor Samalot, Cleveland Männerchor, St. Ed’s Trash Talkers, Next Best Thing and more! Check it out on Facebook.

In addition to the music, over 40 high-quality arts and crafts vendors will be in attendance, as well as local non-profits with informational booths. Families should be sure to check out the Kids’ Zone which will have games, arts & crafts, and a rock-climbing wall. Students from local schools are also participating in the Wild about Old Brooklyn Art Contest, the winner of which will receive a family pass to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

Be sure to come hungry because a wide range of food will be available thanks to some of Cleveland’s favorite food trucks and vendors. Finally, local skaters will be pleased to hear that the Pop UP Skate Park is back again for 2012, thanks to our partners at Public Square Group.

An integral part of Pop UP Pearl is the creation of a demonstration “complete street”. (Complete streets are those which accommodate all users — old, young, disabled, transit users, automobile drivers, cyclists and/or pedestrians.) When an area commits to completing its streets, it makes a commitment to the safety and security of its residents, while also creating a street ideal for storefront retail.

Pop UP Pearl is modeled on the Better Block project, first undertaken in Dallas in 2010. It will create a temporary “complete street” with pop-up shops, vibrant street life and a clear vision of what downtown Old Brooklyn could be. It should be noted that the City of Cleveland passed a Complete & Green Streets Ordinance in 2011, making it one of only a few cities that has such a law. Pop UP Pearl celebrates this achievement, and shows how it can potentially be implemented.

A new component of the streetscape design for 2012 is the DIY Urbanism Design-Build Competition. Inspired by the Rebar Group’s Park(ing) Day and Niehoff Studio’s DIY competition, the DIY Urbanism Design-Build Competition asks design teams to rethink how the public should see an on-street parking space by transforming it into a small park, a piece of public art, or some other amenity. Come see the designs, question how public space is used, and interact with it in new and exciting ways

Although temporary, the Pop UP Pearl event’s complete street component is tied to the in-progress redesign of the street and sidewalks on Pearl Rd. between Wildlife Way and State Rd. As such, it acts as a catalyst for the project and a demonstration of what it might look like upon completion three to five years from now.

Anyone who would like to be a part of the day, either as a volunteer or as a participant, should contact Christopher Lohr or Jayme Lucas-Bukszar at 216-459-1000. Readers can also visit www.popuppearl.com for updates and more information.


Pop UP Pearl is made possible by grants from Neighborhood Connections and Cuyahoga Arts & Culture as well as by sponsors Key Bank, Dollar Bank, Memphis Fulton Shopping Center, Chiro Cleveland, Hudec Dental, Healthy Start, Constellation Schools, Honey Hut Ice Cream Shoppe, M & M Wintergreens, Gabe’s Family Restaurant, Fred’s Breads, Pat Catan’s and Third Federal Savings & Loan. The Old Brooklyn Community Development Corporation would also like to thank Ward 13 Councilman Kevin Kelley, Ward 12 Councilman Anthony Brancatelli, and Ward 3 Councilman Joe Cimperman for their ongoing support.

Other local businesses and organizations — The Kiwanis Club of Brooklyn-Cleveland, Metrohealth Senior Health & Wellness Center, Kehoe Brothers Printing, Speed Exterminating, Ameriflag, Inc. and the Deaconess Community Foundation, The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, Art House, Grace Church, Mary Queen of Peace School and Public Square Group — have pledged additional support for the event.

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