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December Centennial Gift: Cleveland Foundation Day of Family Fun

Posted December 03, 2014 in Press Releases

December Centennial Gift: Cleveland Foundation Day of Family Fun
Foundation’s final centennial gift to provide free, healthy activities at 38 sites
throughout Northeast Ohio

CLEVELAND (Dec. 3, 2014) – The Cleveland Foundation today announced its December centennial gift to the community – Cleveland Foundation Day of Family Fun – which will offer a variety of healthy activities at more than three dozen sites in six counties throughout Northeast Ohio on Tuesday, Dec. 30. The gift includes:

- Free tobogganing at Cleveland Metroparks Mill Stream Run Reservation in Strongsville
- Special tours and activities at three sites in Cuyahoga Valley National Park
- Free ice-skating at The Rink at Wade Oval in University Circle
- Free ice-skating at the city of Cleveland’s Halloran Park, free roller-skating at the city’s Zelma George Recreation Center and extended hours at all 20 city recreation centers
- Free admission and special programming at all 12 branches of the YMCA of Greater Cleveland

No tickets will be required for this final monthly gift of the Cleveland Foundation’s centennial year.

“Our centennial has been about honoring the people, places and organizations that have been a part of our first century of impact here in Greater Cleveland,” said Robert E. Eckardt, Executive Vice President of the Cleveland Foundation. “For our final gift, we wanted to give thousands of Greater Clevelanders the opportunity to take advantage of the incredible community assets right in their own neighborhoods. By joining with five gift partners and offering free activities at 38 separate locations – our largest geographic reach this year – we hope families will discover the incredible range of fun, healthy activities available throughout our region.”

The Cleveland Foundation has provided nearly $18 million in historical support to the five partner organizations of the December centennial gift. This month’s gift will allow Cleveland Metroparks to provide free tobogganing at its Strongsville Mill Stream Run Reservation.

“Cleveland Metroparks is thrilled that the Cleveland Foundation has chosen to host part of its December centennial gift to the community at one of the jewels in our Emerald Necklace, the Chalet Recreation Area at the Mill Stream Run Reservation in Strongsville,” said Brian Zimmerman, CEO of Cleveland Metroparks. “The December gift of family fun aligns perfectly with our mission. ‘Come Out and Play’ and enjoy free tobogganing at Cleveland Metroparks Chalet Recreation Area on Dec. 30.”

While Cuyahoga Valley National Park always offers free admission, as part of its participation in the foundation’s December centennial gift, the park will feature special guided tours: one-mile evergreen forest snowshoe hikes at the Kendall Lake Shelter and one-mile beginner hikes on the Towpath Trail. In addition, free park packets and hourly prize packages will be given out at Trail Mix in Peninsula. Trail Mix is a park store run by the Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park – one of the park’s partners.

“The Cleveland Foundation is a long-time supporter of Cuyahoga Valley National Park and has helped it develop into one of the most-visited national parks in the country,” said Deb Yandala, CEO of the Conservancy. “We are happy to showcase the variety of activities available to people of all ages in any kind of weather, year-round. We are grateful to the Cleveland Foundation for promoting and supporting healthy and fun experiences in our wonderful national park. Join us on Dec. 30 and come back throughout the year to enjoy our trails and programs.”

The gift will enable University Circle Inc. to offer free ice-skating at The Rink at Wade Oval and extended hours from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The free admission to The Rink will also provide visitors with discounts for all four Wade Oval institutions.

“University Circle Inc. is thrilled that The Rink at Wade Oval will be one of the many wonderful gifts the Cleveland Foundation will be offering as its Family Fun December gift to the community,” said Chris Ronayne, President of University Circle Inc. “The Rink at Wade Oval is the only outdoor, open-air rink in the city of Cleveland and it is surrounded by world-class institutions such as the Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland Botanical Garden, Cleveland Museum of Natural History and Western Reserve Historical Society, which will all be offering discounts for those who show a rink wristband. We hope you all ‘Find Yourself in the Circle’ this holiday season!”

Thanks to the foundation’s gift, the city of Cleveland will provide free ice-skating at Halloran Park, free roller-skating at the Zelma George Recreation Center and extended hours at all 20 of its recreation centers on Dec. 30.

“On behalf of Mayor Frank G. Jackson and the citizens of Cleveland, we thank the Cleveland Foundation for this generous gift and we are excited to participate in the December Cleveland Foundation Day,” said Michael E. Cox, Director of the City of Cleveland Department of Public Works. “Throughout the years, the foundation has been an excellent partner with the City by supporting programs and initiatives that enhance the quality of life for our citizens. This gift will continue that fine tradition by extending the hours of City recreation centers and allowing youth and their families more time to participate in recreational activities. We congratulate the Cleveland Foundation on reaching this important milestone and are honored to be selected to participate in this centennial celebration.”

The doors at the YMCA of Greater Cleveland’s dozen branches will be open to everyone on Dec. 30 for the Cleveland Foundation Day of Family Fun, with special free healthy living programs, health screenings and exercise classes offered throughout the day.

“The YMCA of Greater Cleveland is tremendously honored to be selected as a partner for the Cleveland Foundation’s December gift to the community,” said YMCA of Greater Cleveland President and CEO Glenn Haley. “With a rich, 160-year tradition of service to Northeast Ohioans, rooted in the core values of caring, respect, honesty, responsibility and faith, we appreciate the opportunity to do something so meaningful for the community as we continue our commitment to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility in the region. The Cleveland Foundation is a valued supporter of our YMCA programs and services, and the significant work it does helps us further our cause to strengthen community.”

More details on activities at each gift partner site will be announced Dec. 15 and posted atwww.clevelandfoundation.org/familyfun. While no tickets will be required at any of the gift locations, sign-ups will be posted through the foundation’s website, starting Dec. 15, for venues where capacity may be limited.

With today’s gift announcement, the Cleveland Foundation has partnered with 28 local nonprofit organizations and public agencies for its monthly centennial gifts to the community. More than 170,000 Greater Clevelanders have enjoyed the gifts to date.

“Next year marks a new century for the Cleveland Foundation, one in which we will continue to turn passion into purpose for our donors, our grantee organizations and residents of this great community,” Eckardt said. “We have exciting things in store for our 101st year, and we look forward to everyone joining us in defining the future of Greater Cleveland – together.”

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The Cleveland Foundation
Established in 1914, the Cleveland Foundation is the world's first community foundation and one of the largest today, with assets of $2.1 billion and 2013 grants of $89 million. For more information on the Cleveland Foundation, visit www.ClevelandFoundation.org/purpose and follow us at facebook.com/ClevelandFoundation or @CleveFoundation on Twitter.

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