Cleveland’s Best Excursions
Best Place to See Chuck Close Up Close: The renovated Akron Art Museum (1 S. High St., 330/376-9185, www.akronartmuseum.org, Tues.–Sun. 11 a.m.–5 p.m., Thurs. until 9 p.m., $7 adult, $5 senior and student) has one of the most impressive collections of 20th-century art. Fans of Chuck Close’s large-scale photorealistic paintings can ogle at his mesmerizing Linda here as well as works by Andy Warhol and Frank Stella.
Most Complete Collection of Super Bowl Rings: Gridiron fans make the pilgrimage to Canton from points afar to wallow in the memorabilia at the Pro Football Hall of Fame (2121 George Halas Drive NW, 330/456-8207, www.profootballhof.com, daily 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Memorial Day–Labor Day daily 9 a.m.–8 p.m., $16 adult, $13 senior, $10 child). The museum’s Super Bowl Room contains collectibles from every championship game played to date.
Longest Covered Bridge in America: Ashtabula County is home to 17 covered bridges, including Smolen-Gulf Bridge (www.coveredbridgefestival.org/bridgesmolen.htm), the longest in the United States. Bridge buffs come here to admire the craftsmanship and charm of these handsome overpasses.
Most Interesting Souvenir from the Ice Age: When a massive glacier rubbed its way across the northern tip of Kelleys Island about 18,000 years ago, it etched striking Glacial Grooves (419/797-4530, www.kelleysislandhistorical.org/island_places/glacial_grooves.htm, dusk–dawn, free) into solid bedrock. Measuring 10 feet deep, 35 feet wide, and 400 feet long, the furrows are remnants of the Pleistocene Ice Age.
Most Appropriate Place to Scream: Thanks to its matchless collection of the world’s tallest, fastest, steepest roller coasters, Cedar Point Amusement Park (1 Cedar Point Dr., Sandusky, 419/627-2350, www.cedarpoint.com, daily mid-May–Aug., weekends only Sept.–Oct., $43 adult, $16 child under 48” and senior)is consistently heralded as the world’s best amusement park. Hop on Top Thrill Dragster to zip to a speed of 120 miles per hour before climbing to a height of 420 feet.
Best Place to Buy a Goat: When a gentleman farmer needs to buy livestock, he heads to the Kidron Auction (4885 Kidron Rd., Kidron, 330/857-2641, www.kidronauction.com, Thurs.). This lively Amish Country auction is open to the public, making the weekly event a popular albeit unconventional tourist attraction.
© Douglas Trattner from Moon Cleveland, 1st Edition