Offbeat Attractions & Events

May 8, 2014
Offbeat Attractions and Events in Cleveland

Cleveland Visitor Info That Doesn’t Make The Guidebook

Whether you're here perusing the world's largest PEZ dispenser collection at the biggest candy story in the nation or dunking you head into a giant vat of ketchup during the National Hamburger Festival, a trip to Cleveland can be just plain...different.

We have great traditional museums, sure.  But many people might not know about other niche collections. There's this cool, little museum in the University Circle area dedicated to 19th century medical equipment and early forms of contraception. The Dittrick Muesum of Medical History will make you appreciate modern-day medicine.

For those looking for something a bit more inspiring, The Museum of Divine Statues located in Lakewood  displays amazing religious statues and reliquaries saved from abandoned churches. Located in a former church, the museum beautifully showcases the dedication of historical preservation. Prepare to feel moved.

On the flip side, head downtown to the Cleveland Police Museum featuring artifacts from the grisly torso murders that horrified Cleveland in the 1930s. The museum also highlights the history of Cleveland's first responders.

And, if you really want to get the 411 on Cleveland's polka scene (I mean, who wouldn't), you've got to check out the Cleveland-style Polka Hall of Fame. This uber cool little museum on the East Side takes visitors through the jovial music and some of the polka superstars who came out of Cleveland.

The Big Fun Toy Store, while not exactly a museum, is a repository of seemingly every amusing childhood memory, including whoopee cushions and other classic toys, candy and gag gifts.

If you want to feel like you've landed in a Twilight Zone episode, head out to suburban Twinsburg for Twins Days in August. The annual festival draws hundreds of twins from around the world for contests, talent shows and a parade. It's worth the visit.  

The Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival in June shows off fashion and sculptures made from the sticky stuff, including a parade in which everything is made of duct tape.

In June, artists and musicians seem to up the ante every year with their wild and beautiful handmade floats, costumes, puppets and dance routines at Parade the Circle located in Cleveland's University Circle.

For those seeking an even more offbeat experience, consider driving out to Port Clinton on New Year's Eve for the town's annual Walleye Drop.  At midnight, a massive crane lowers a fiberglass replica of a walleye - approximately 30 times larger than the average mild-mannered Lake Erie fish.

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