News

Hiding in Plain Sight: Clifton History in Our Sidewalks

By Margaret Reich

This article was first published in the Clifton Chronicle

One of several bronze “art carpet” along Ludlow Avenue. This one features a card catalogue and book spines in reference to Clifton Branch Library, which was once housed in a nearby building. Photo by Kip Eagen.

While serving as president of the Clifton Community Fund, one of the most fun emails I’ve received came from a Clifton resident curious about the beautiful bronze panels inset on the sidewalks of Ludlow Avenue. A book lover, she asked about the plaque in front of Gaslight Bar and Grill that features a card catalog and book spines with titles she did not recognize. Many Clifton residents may not know that this building once housed our neighborhood library. The titles and authors featured are all inside jokes about Clifton and Cincinnati history. For instance, “I Know Where the Bodies Are Buried” by Adolph Strauch: He was the 19th century designer and landscaper of Spring Grove Cemetery. Israel Ludlow was a surveyor who helped to found Cincinnati. The Academy of the Sacred Heart on Lafayette Avenue was built to look like an English castle. “Schnecken: A Tale of Butter and Cinnamon,” by Virginia Bakery: this recalls the beloved bakery famous for a pastry sold from the shop where we now find J. Gumbo’s. Sharp observers will notice that the wisteria arbor next to J. Gumbo’s still has “Virginia Bakery” etched into the wood.

While serving as president of the Clifton Community Fund, one of the most fun emails I’ve received came from a Clifton resident curious about the beautiful bronze panels inset on the sidewalks of Ludlow Avenue. A book lover, she asked about the plaque in front of Gaslight Bar and Grill that features a card catalog and book spines with titles she did not recognize. Many Clifton residents may not know that this building once housed our neighborhood library. The titles and authors featured are all inside jokes about Clifton and Cincinnati history. For instance, “I Know Where the Bodies Are Buried” by Adolph Strauch: He was the 19th century designer and landscaper of Spring Grove Cemetery. Israel Ludlow was a surveyor who helped to found Cincinnati. The Academy of the Sacred Heart on Lafayette Avenue was built to look like an English castle. “Schnecken: A Tale of Butter and Cinnamon,” by Virginia Bakery: this recalls the beloved bakery famous for a pastry sold from the shop where we now find J. Gumbo’s. Sharp observers will notice that the wisteria arbor next to J. Gumbo’s still has “Virginia Bakery” etched into the wood.

There are six bronze plaques in total, inlaid on sidewalks on both sides of Ludlow Avenue. Originally called “Art Carpets,” the art panels were fabricated and installed in 2010. In 2016, CCF helped to reset them after some had started to shift. Take a look at the plaques as you stroll the business district this spring, ice cream cone or coffee drink in hand. Many of them are still related to adjacent buildings as are the ones in front of the Esquire and Graeter’s. All contain insider references to businesses, landmarks, and individuals from our neighborhood’s past. I’ll share more Art Carpets backstories in future issues of the Chronicle. You can send questions or any insights you might have about them to cliftonccf@gmail.com.

Clifton History in Our Sidewalks, Part II

By Margaret Reich, with Kip Eagen

This article was first published in the Summer 2022 Clifton Chronicle.

Six bronze plaques were imbedded in the sidewalks of the Ludlow Avenue business district in 2010 as part of a larger Ludlow Avenue revitalization project, which also included establishment of the seating area at Ludlow and Telford. The plaques were designed and fabricated by the Andrews/LeFevre Studios in New York City, guided by input from our community. The plaques commemorate the history, buildings and businesses of Clifton.

The Clifton residents who worked with the city on this project included Jinny Berten, Kip Eagen, Phil Herrick, and Steve Schuckman with the support of ArtWorks. The intention was to create visually striking works of art called “Art Carpets.” The content is whimsical in nature with visual puns and “insider” references to local history. These public art works are unique to Clifton within Cincinnati. 

The largest plaque sits in front of Clifton Plaza. Look carefully and the images are self-explanatory, celebrating some of Clifton’s exceptional architecture, like the allegedly haunted house on Cornell Avenue. A favorite true story is remembered, of the cow that escaped a Camp Washington slaughterhouse and evaded capture in Mt. Storm Park for 12 days. Some of the Art Carpets are related to nearby buildings (one at the Esquire Theatre, one in front of Graeter’s Ice Cream). Let me know which plaque you’d next like to know about at cliftonccf@gmail.com.

One of several bronze “art carpets” ne of several bronze “art carpets” embedded in the sidewalk along Ludlow Avenue. The one pictured here is the largest and sits in front of Clifton Plaza. It depicts examples of Clifton’s architectural gems, a fountain, a gas-lit streetlamp, and more.

10th Annual CTM Golf Outing

Join us for the 10th annual CTM Golf Outing, dinner on the Clubhouse deck and prizes!

Golf Outing Poster
  • Date: Saturday August 27, 2022
  • Location: Avon Fields Golf Course, 4081 Reading Road
  • Time: Shotgun start at 2:00 pm – 18 hole scramble
  • Dinner: 6:00 pm; welcome families and friends
  • Fee: $100 per player. Make your own foursome or we can pair you up.
  • Dinner for Extra Guests: $10 (Kids 12 and under eat for free)
  • To Register: Complete the 2022 Golf Outing Registration. Please include names of others registering as a group. This form is required even if you purchased online tickets.
  • Purchase Online: The store is closed for this event. We use PayPal for payment. You must complete the paper registration even if you purchased online previously – this is how we will know who is in your foursome.

Event includes ‘Beat the Lady Bearcat’, ‘Hole in One’ and ‘Kids Putting’ contests, four-person scramble tournament, over $3, 000 in raffle prizes and concluded with Dinner on the Deck (kids 12 and under eat for free, you don’t need to play golf to dine!).

Through the support of businesses like yours, Clifton Golf Outing has given over $75,000 to deserving non-profits in your neighborhood including:
Good Samaritan Cancer Center – Burnet Woods – Clifton Cultural Arts Center
Clifton Community Fund – Clifton Fairview German School – Little Sisters of the Poor
CANS (Clifton Area Neighborhood School) – Clifton Town Meeting

Because of their faithful participation in our past events, the University of Cincinnati Lady Bearcat Golfers will be our 2022 beneficiaries.

photo of Avon Fields
Avon Fields Golf Course: Oldest Course West of the Alleghenies

Recognizing “Friends of Clifton”

Each year Clifton Golf Outing is proud to honor a “Friend of Clifton,” people who have given back much to our great neighborhood. This year we’ll honor Patrick Borders and Helen Adams. Past recipients include Cindy Herrick, Dick Druffel, Tom Lohre, David Taylor, Tom Reese, David Mann, and Jan & Gerald Checco.

The Clifton Golf Outing supports your neighborhood. We ask that you support Clifton Golf Outing.

Memorial Day Parade and Picnic

Date: Monday, May 30

Our Event Schedule

10:30 am – Congregate at McAlpin and Middleton to participate in the Parade! Decorated bikes, pets and humans are essential for maximum fun along the way!

11:00 am – The Parade accompanied by the UC Alumni Band walks north on Middleton from McAlpin, turns left on Lafayette, heading to Mt. Storm Park where we’ll convene to picnic!

12:00 Noon – Community Picnic at Mt. Storm Park, burgers and dogs available with drinks and Dojo Gelato. Pet Parade Costume Awards, Chalk Art by Kathleen Streitenberger, Gardening Advice from Queen City Pollinators, Live Music by the Comet Bluegrass All Stars! Accessible Parking available at Mt. Storm lots. Others can park at Sacred Heart playfield lot. To Note: In case of rain, we’ll gather at noon for our community picnic in the Clifton Rec Center gymnasium! Please leave pets at home.

Volunteers make it happen!  Please sign up here.

Produced by Clifton Town Meeting in partnership with Clifton Community Fund, the Cincinnati Parks Foundation and Mt. Storm Advisory Council. Join Us!

CTM Meeting – May 2

Don’t forget to tune in CTM Monthly Board Meeting this Monday, May 2 from 7:00 – 9:00pm.

JOIN INFORMATION

Google Meet joining info – Video call link: https://meet.google.com/cbq-ghmn-itn

Or dial: (US)  +1 318-526-1501‬ PIN: 359 803 907‬#‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

TimeTopicTopic LeadScope of Discussion
7:00 / 1 minWelcome to the Google Meet electronic meetingPres Gerald CheccoTrustees
7:01 / 2 minApprove prior month’s meeting minutesSec. Mike RollerTrustees
7: 03 / 2 minTreasurer’s ReportTreas. Tim MaxeyTrustees/Comm.
7:05 / 15 minPolice ReportP.O. Shawn DentTrustees/Comm.
7:20 / 5 minCRC ReportCollin FitzpatrickTrustees/Comm.
7:25 / 5 minPublic Library ReportDir. Jeanne Strauss DeGrootTrustees/Comm.
7:35/ 15 minWhat is happening in UptownBrooke Rapp
7:50/ 15 minCommunity-driven Utility investment – Motion 1Nestor Melnyk
8:05/ 5 minMemorial Day Picnic – Call for volunteersBarry GeeTrustees/Comm.
8:10/ 5 minNeighborhood Cleanup/ Planting- VolunteersJayme Ritter
8:15/ 5 minChronicle UpdateJan Checco
8:20/ 5 minArts and Culture updateJoyce Rich
8:25/ 1 minAdditional Leadership for Communication Committee– Motion 2Pres. CheccoTrustees
8:25 / 5 minThanks GivingBoardTrustees/Comm.
8:30 / 10 minTrustee, Committee and Liaisons AnnouncementsPres CheccoTrustees/Comm.
8:40 / 15 minCommunity Questions/ConcernsPres CheccoTrustees/Comm.
9:00AdjournmentPres CheccoTrustees/Comm.

MOTIONS

#Sponsor
1Housing & ZoningCommunity Driven Electric Investment – Motion to send PUCO a letter supporting a proposed program that would allow local communities to request their utility companies to investigate upgrades to electrical infrastructure.  Upon community approval of the projects and budgets, the utility companies may implement the upgrades, to be paid for by the affected consumers through a normal rate of return on investment.
2PresidentAdding a co-chair to the Communication Committee – The Chair of the Communication Committee, Monica Windholtz, asked the President to add new CTM Trustee, Rachel Wells, as a co-chair of the committee.  Rachel Wells agree to serve in that capacity.