Explore Cleveland and step into its stories through a series of curated routes and activities. This fun, self-guided experience is part scavenger hunt and part history tour! Whether you have a day, an hour, or only five minutes, there’s an exciting adventure just waiting for you.
The Variety Theatre and its deep-rooted theatrical history was a major inspiration for Jessica Dickey’s The Ghost Tour.
The Variety Theatre at different times used to be a concert hall, a movie theatre, and a vaudeville theatre. Who would be your dream artist to see at the Variety? Take a picture of yourself with the theatre’s marquee and learn more by taking a look at the window displays.
Continue your exploration of the history and memories contained within places and objects from the past by driving over to the antique store Sweet Lorain!
Chelsea Marcantel’s play Lake Erie Oubliette explores the metaphysical and all things spiritual.
Spend some time at the Buckland Museum of Witchcraft and Magick. As you explore the museum, ask yourself: would you ever try to contact spirits, if you could?
For more mystical experiences, check out Coven. When Chelsea was in Cleveland, doing some on-the-ground research for her play, she visited Coven, and the store was instrumental to her exploration.
The Cuyahoga River Fire of 1969 is the last moment of the 21-year journey of Crooked River Burning by George Brant.
To help with protecting the wildlife and environment around Cuyahoga River, check out Cuyahoga River Restoration and see how you can get involved with their efforts! After a long hike, grab some lunch over at Merwin’s Wharf!
In Crooked River Burning by George Brant, there’s a scene where the main character goes for a drive across the bridge and gets to take in the view of the city from above.
Go for a walk or drive across the bridge, now known as the Hope Memorial Bridge, and enjoy the view. Don’t forget to check out the Guardians of Traffic. Each Guardian holds in their hands a different mode of transportation –- can you spot them all?
If you’re feeling a little hungry after exploring the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge, take a bite into the cultures represented in Vichet Chum’s play Liébling with some food from Kim Se, a Cambodian food stall, and from one of the many European bakery stalls at the Westside Market.
I’m Back Now by Charly Evon Simpson focuses on three generations of women in a family, spanning multiple time periods.
Mirror one of the characters’ journey by taking a trip over to Public Square. Imagine what Public Square would have looked like back in the 1860s and 1980s and compare it to how it looks today. See if you can find an object in the area that may have been present through those three distinct time periods.
Historical figure, Sara Lucy Bagby, buried at Woodland Cemetery, was one of the main inspirations for Charly Evon Simpson’s play I’m Back Now, and the characters in the play visit her grave.
Pay homage to Sara Lucy Bagby at her grave, and listen to an audio tour of the cemetery.
A character from Chelsea Marcantel’s play Lake Erie Oubliette is an archivist from the Western Reserve Historical Society, seeking to preserve a prominent Cleveland family’s legacy.
Spend some time at Western Reserve Historical Society learning more about Cleveland. As you walk around, take a moment to think and maybe even journal about what aspects of life now you would want to capture for the future, if you were an archivist.
In Liébling by Vichet Chum, the Cleveland Museum of Art serves as a place for contemplation and cultural connection for many characters. One of the characters is given an assignment of having to create a piece of visual art that reinterprets popular iconography in her history or culture.
Explore the museum and be sure to visit the Cambodian art section. Or keep your wanderings outside and then take a seat on the steps or a bench. Consider the play’s question: how would you reinterpret popular iconography from your history or culture? Sketch, draw, paint, sculpt, write it out -- unleash your creativity!
Lake View Cemetery is the final resting place for so many of Cleveland’s famous figures referenced in both George Brant’s and Chelsea Marcantel’s plays.
Walk or drive through the cemetery and pay homage to Alan Freed, Eliot Ness, and Carl Stokes, the icons featured in George’s play Crooked River Burning. While you’re there, check out the Wade Chapel, named for the spiritualist family who inspired Chelsea’s play Lake Erie Oubliette. And take a look at the Garfield memorial as well. The president, or perhaps his spirit, gets special mention in Chelsea’s play.
The Allen, Helen and Outcalt theatres are located at Playhouse Square
1407 Euclid Avenue Cleveland, OH 44115
Administrative Offices and Education Center
1901 E. 13th Street, Suite 200 Cleveland, OH 44114 (216) 400-7000
7401 Detour Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44103