Meeting of The Committee for Improving The Sterling Recreation Center; Cleveland State International Culture Night; Easter Egg Hunt at Lithuanian Garden; Former Cleveland City Councilman Mr. Nelson Cintron Celebrates Birthday
On the evening of Friday, April 1st, we divided our time between two important events that took place at the same time. First, we attended a meeting of the committee for improving the Sterling Recreation Center on East 32nd Street in Cleveland. We took a tour of the facility and listened to the proposal that Mr. Armando Canas, a veteran contractor, had for upgrading it. Most importantly, the heating unit will have to be replaced but Ms. Shelli Brooks, our president, was well-versed in matters of obtaining funding and the labor rules regarding construction so we believe that this just might be achievable. Mr. Canas, an authority in such matters, indicated that a lot of work needs to be done but ultimately, with the right amount of hard-work and commitment, the recreation center could be a gem that will attract more local residents than ever before. We particularly liked his ideas about enhancing the green space outside of the center. Next we hurried over to the M.C. Auditorium at CSU for the last part of International Culture Night which was, as our invite stated, "a fundraising event organized by Cleveland State University's ISO (Indian Student Organization) and CISP (Center for International Services and Programs)." We learned that the money raised at this event will be used to assist an international student diagnosed with cancer. We sat down for a little while and got to watch some accomplished young dancers perform. Several people then came forward to speak and a raffle was held. We really liked hearing from Mr. R. Balasubramanian otherwise known as "Cleveland Balu" who organized the Cleveland Thyagaraja Festival last year where "Margaret W. Wong and Associates" hung its banner. It was said that the "aim" of this event was "to bring all the residents of Cleveland together in making their contribution" and the auditorium was packed full of people so it looks like the "aim" was successful in hitting its target. Saturday morning, April 2nd, was a bit chillier than what we are used to for April particularly after the nice warm Easter that we enjoyed the previous Sunday but we put on our overcoat and headed over to the Lithuanian Garden (part of the Cleveland Cultural Gardens) for an Easter Egg Hunt. The bus containing children from the Lithuanian School at St. Casimir Church had not arrived yet so Ms. Violeta Leger, who played the role of the Easter Granny or "Velykos", explained to us the Lithuanian customs of Easter. We learned that in Lithuania, it customary to celebrate Easter all of the following week by dyeing and giving eggs to one's loved ones on this day represented the last chance to do so. Also appropriately dressed was Ms. Ada Stungys who was playing the role of the Easter Bunny. Soon the children arrived and had a good time gathering up the eggs. Among the others present was ourgood friend Ms. Ingrida Bublys who brought her grandson, Lukas, who had just arrived back from a holiday in Lithuania at 3am that very day but, nevertheless, was eager to be there. Our other event on Saturday was a birthday party for former Cleveland City Councilman Mr. Nelson Cintron that was held at El Rodeo Mexican Restaurant on Center Street in Mentor.Ms. Margaret W. Wong and Ms. Cecilia Wong also attended because Mr. Cintron has always tried to include our office in the various festivals and parties that he has helped to organize on behalf of the Latino community. For instance, last summer he arranged for the banner of "Margaret W. Wong and Associates" to be on display at Latino Day at the Lake County Fair. He also helped to establish "Coalicion Latinos Unidos de Lake County" which is a nonprofit "focused on improving the quality of life of the Latino community in Lake County" so all of us respect Mr. Cintron for his integrity and his commitment. We had an excellent dinner of tortillas, chips, beans and rice (probably more than we should have) andgot to visit with some fine people like Father Steve Zalenga of St. Mary Church in Painesville who we heard speak a few months ago at the First Friday Club. We also managed to make it home before the heavy snow flakes (!) of April started to fall on Euclid Beach.