Sweetest Day Rendezvous

September 13, 2015
Sweetest Day Weekend

Celebrate Sweetest Day Weekend in Cleveland

Lexi Hotchkiss

Scarlett & Rhett. Rose & Jack. Bella & Edward. Cameron & Mitchell. Gwen & Gavin. Beyonce & Jay Z. Princess Leia & Han Solo.

All great loves require a celebration. And, what better way to treasure your sweetheart than with a fling through Cleveland on Sweetest Day weekend (Oct. 16-18, 2015)? After all, the holiday got its start right here on the shores of Lake Erie.

Legend has it that back in 1921, a group of Cleveland-area candy makers got together to share ways they could bring happiness to the city's poor. So, they distributed candy and chocolates to the sick, elderly and orphaned on what they lauded as "Sweetest Day." The day became popular year-after-year and later took off when companies - like Cleveland-based American Greetings - spread the concept nationally.

Here in Cleveland, many of us celebrate it much like a second version of Valentine's Day. Check out these interesting ways to have your very-own Sweetest Day rendezvous in the city that started it all.


If, like Professors Roger and Virginia Klarvin, you and your love-ah are frequent guests at the Welshly Arms Hotel, then the way to your heart is through food ("Does anyone care for spiced lamb shanks?").

Thankfully, Cleveland knows its way around the kitchen. If it's French for ton amour, make reservations at L'Albatros, EDWINS or Cowell & Hubbard. For Italian, make it all about the romance at Luca, Osteria di Valerio & Al or LAGO Cucina. Or, go with something a little shi-shi like Lola Bistro, Trentina or CROP Bistro.

And, while we can all appreciate a good meal, sometimes it's simply foreplay for the true object of our desire: DESSERT! Check out these divine places for a decadent sweet treat this Sweetest Day.


Art is the ultimate muse - for love or otherwise. In Cleveland, we can think of no better way to woo your art-lovin' boo than with a trip to the Cleveland Museum of Art. The internationally recognized museum contains more than 30,000 pieces of art spanning more than 5,000 years. You'll find everything from Picasso to Renoir and Warhol to Monet.

Speaking of Monet, the museum is teaming up with Royal Academy of Arts in London for a once-in-lifetime international art exhibition called Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse beginning Oct. 11. The exhibition features 103 paintings by 25 artists all covering the use of gardens in art and centers on the work of Claude Monet. Take a romantic walk through the gardens (see what I did there?) with your love to celebrate Sweetest Day.


If there's anything truly worth peeping for this fall, it's the leaves. According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, greater Cleveland experiences peak fall foliage colors between early- and mid-October. So, Sweetest Day offers just-chilly-enough-weather to hold hands while doting on Cleveland's au naturale beauty.

Throughout all of the fall season, the Cleveland Botanical Garden offers an ongoing event called ColorFall, which includes specialty leaf walks, flashlight tours and earthy ways to celebrate the harvest.

Or, give your honey a self-guided foliage tour through the Holden Arboretum or Cleveland Metroparks - autumn picnic in hand. And, make sure to stay overnight nearby nature.

Take a romantic train ride aboard the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad as you dip and turn through the national park's valleys, meadows and overlooks dotted with oranges, reds and crisp browns.


For many of us - especially in Cleveland - Cupid's arrow doesn't come from a satchel, but rather a growler he wears strapped to his back. That's right, folks. The way to our hearts is through a cold, frosty craft beer.

And, the best news of all is the Cleveland Beer Week is happening during the same time as Sweetest Day Weekend. The weeklong dedication to all things beer includes tastings, beer and food pairings, special tappings, dinners, educational programming, games and activities, music-related celebrations, and vintage releases.

Promenade your partner to Cleveland Beer Week's Beer & Chocolate Extravaganza at the Heinen's Downtown Rotunda on Oct. 16. The soiree features 16 brews paired with all sorts of luxurious chocolates. Sweet!

If you can't make it to any of the 350 events happening at more than 125 locations (which of course we find hard to believe), then at least get your beer-loving beloved to the Brewpub at Great Lakes Brewing Company where you can sip seasonal favorites like Nosferatu Imperial Red Ale and Oktoberfest.


Fancy a little thespianism this Sweetest Day weekend? Book tickets to see the Broadway musical Bullets Over Broadway at the glittering gem of a theater district called Playhouse Square.

Or, cross over Euclid Avenue to the Hanna Theatre for a rousing production of the childhood classic The Secret Garden or Shakespeare's King Lear.

For those looking for something a little (a lot) less classical, consider tickets to Evil Dead The Musical, where audiences can sit in the "Splatter Zone!" and get drenched from the onstage mayhem (ahem... fake blood).


Make it a full three-day trip to Cleveland with these great ways to celebrate all things love this Sweetest Day Weekend:

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