Next Chance to Join The Inner Circle - Friday, June 1st Open House

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 05/29/2007 - 21:28.
06/01/2007 - 10:30
06/01/2007 - 20:00

Edwin David by Inner Circle Restaurant sign

Last Wednesday, we opened up The Inner Circle Restaurant and historic Hough Bakeries complex for a public tour, planning discussion, and great Hot Sauce Williams BBQ buffet, and that was a great success - there's a write-up here. Your next chance to join The Inner Circle, explore The Hough, participate in planning this neighborhood and enjoy some great BBQ is this Friday, June 1, 2007. More on the Open House and pictures are found at More on the Hough Bakeries complex at

Hough Bakeries Pan

There will be periodic tours throughout the complex and a series of dialogs about what is happening with the Inner Circle, the Hough Bakeries complex, and that historic neighborhood. Come any time after 10:30 AM - first tour at 11 AM... stay for lunch - come later and stay through Happy Hour.... then, pop a few blocks down Euclid to Future at the Cleveland Institute of Art for the opening of Design Values 2... live the circle life.


BBQ at Inner Circle

Lunch will be available from noon until 2 PM - perhaps later - all prepared by Hot Sauce Williams, which owns the Hough Bakeries property and has the commercial kitchen there for their four Cleveland restaurants. We'll have a buffet featuring a variety of Hot Sauce's BBQ, fried and side dishes, salad and baked goods - all freshly prepared by Cleveland's best urban restaurateur - there will be some variety for vegetarians!

Please plan to contribute $7 to help pay for the cost of food and service, if you eat, if you may. The Inner Circle Restaurant has a liquor license and there will be a cash bar offering a basic selection of beverages, coffee, tea, etc., which will be available throughout the day and evening. There will also be baked goods for sale and original Hough Bakeries boxes available for fundraising.

While you are welcome to come and go as you like, there will be informal slots for activities scheduled throughout the day, as summarized below. Note, if you plan to tour the complex, wear walking shoes and bring a flashlight.

11:00 AM - Noon: Tours of Hough Bakeries Complex and review of plans

Discussion on plans for the property and neighborhood.

Noon - 2:00 PM: Lunch and Inner Circle Restaurant Brainstorming

One of the objectives of this open house is to learn from you what type of food, beverages and services you would like here - to keep you coming back - so we hope you will experience what is here today and discuss with others at the lunch what else would be fun to do here... this is YOUR Inner Circle. In addition to members of the Williams family - who can share some grilling tricks - we'll be joined by Edwin David, who is an excellent chef, originally from Guyana, who will be helping to develop the concept of the Inner Circle Restaurant. Your input to all of us on how to make the Inner Circle your place will be invaluable!

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM: Living Entrepreneurship at the Urban Core

This is an excellent occasion to celebrate some core champions of entrepreneurship in this region: Standard Oil founder John D. Rockefeller, Hough Bakery founder Lionel Pile, and Hot Sauce Williams founder LeMaud Williams - all with roots in East Cleveland. LeMaud will be joining us for lunch and, at 1 PM, a discussion on the past, present and future of this neighborhood, where LeMaud and his family have succeeded for decades, in many entrepreneurial ways, when so many fail. Learn some secrets from a hard-core Cleveland entrepreneur, as we vision on the potential of this area and its people for the future.

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM: Linux Cafe at the Inner Circle

In the back gallery of The Inner Circle, there will be an informal, open discussion on open source software. Such Linux Cafes will be a regular feature of The Inner Circle. Today, I will share observations on some recent technology-related developments, including the Cleveland WiFi RFP (to which I will have submitted a response, which I will discuss) offering this region an opportunity to excel as a global leader with FOSS - I look forward to the feedback of others. Derek Arnold will share his observations from his recent trip to Toronto for Drupal Camp. Others at the Circle will be encouraged to join in the discussion.

The Inner Circle and surrounding community will be the region's hotspot for anyone into FOSS. We will deploy FOSS wifi for here, and from here, and host FOSS environments, provide FOSS training and distribute FOSS computers.

ALSO, at the same time, in other areas...


2:00 PM - 4:00 PM: Tours of Hough Bakeries Complex and review of plans

Discussion on plans for the property and neighborhood

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM: Last Tour, with View from the Top of Sustainable Roofing

In the interest of making this complex as educational, efficient, appealing and innovative as possible, we expect it will be renovated to include a green roof. To explore the practical side of this objective, we'll explore the roof with some folks from A-1 Roofing who have constructed large commercial green roofs before - the kind that have soil and plantings on top of them - which is what we want on The Hough (with organic public gardens growing vegetables and herbs for The Inner Circle below). We welcome anyone else to join in this discussion.

5:00 PM - 7:00 PM Happy Hour

Socialize, have a beer or soda... if the weather is nice, enjoy the deck. Chef Edwin is also a top Reggae DJ, and the Inner Circle has a great sound system, so plan to unwind from this first week that feels like Summer, at the Inner Circle. If you have a bit more learning and pursuit of culture left in you, go a few blocks west on Euclid to the Triangle and site of the now and Future Cleveland Institute of Art for the opening of Design Values 2

The point of these open houses is to introduce as many people as possible to plans for this important property, which we call the Star Complex (it was Star Baking before it was Hough Bakeries), and for revitalization of the square mile or so neighborhood around it, in Cleveland and East Cleveland, all the way to University Circle. Please join us in the process, and forward this message to anyone you feel would find this of interest.

Please RSVP to norm [at] realneo [dot] us">norm [at] realneo [dot] us if you may join us, and let us know if you will have lunch


Inner Circle



The Inner Circle Restaurant, at Hough Bakeries
1519 Lakeview Road Parking by the restaurant and across Lakeview in the gated lot
Cleveland, OH
United States

A REALNEO -led rennaissance- FOSS and more

Can't contain the excitement on this emerging evolution.  Why not celebrate a bit as we finally gain real traction after years of socially conscious yet sometimes stigmatizing suffering we starving artists know well...


I'll wear my Technologist cap for just a bit and comment on one of the portions of this discussion I anxiously anticipate - FOSS (Free Open Source Software) and its transformative potential for our region.  Having had an important dialogue with REALNEO/ 7gen business partner Norm Roulet, Bill Callahan of Digital Vision, and bright Bruce Perens of Seattle's Sourcelabs and his lovely Marketing Director Athena Diamantis recently at the Juniper Grille confirmed the ideas I presented and first helped initiate many moons ago at the Kent State Cleveland Urban Design Center.  FOSS GIS (Geographic Information Systems) became a core component of discussion and to me represents the best opportunity to, along with FOSS SNA (Social Network Analysis) help change the world.   Link:


At that time I facilitated the union of some of our most talented GIS minds to potentially polarize around a core idea - that it is through synergistic collaboration that we, as a region, can drive successful open-source outcomes here in NEO.  That initial meeting included Phillip Williams, who shares an IT history with me as fellow technologists working for Alcan Aluminum Corporation as Analysts for several years in our past lives.  That experience helped me better understand the business intersection with web technology and the importance tools like Java, Oracle, and RDBMS manipulation can have to help drive successful systems integration.  Training end users around the nation and attending training in lavish locales like Chicago, Las Vegas, and less than lavish ones like Greensboro and Oswego enriched many a memory.


But lest I digress back to business - FOSS discussion ensued over a year ago between folks and friends from Ensafe, Inc, Sean Burkholder from CUDC, Norm Roulet of REALNEO,  and of course our resident OS-GIS guru, Jon Cline.  At this meeting we formulated the basis for the patchwork quilt FOSS solution to help us drive grassroots community uplift and development - notes to be attached soon.  These FOSS tools include front-end apps GRASS and UDIG driving against a database synergistic with MySQL called POSTGIS.


But more important to our strategy will be the collaborative, transparent approach we take to data collection, manipulation, layering, and analysis as analysts. If we mirror the principles imbedded in FOSS infrastructure we should evolve in a nice parallel as collaborative FOSS executors.  A 2K or more per license for ESRI GIS it beehooves us to rapidly recoup cost returns and savings by utilizing Free Open Source Software solutions driven by our thought leadership and creative potential.  Cross Cutting through and across silos of siloed data to layer lead data with demographically relevant data will be key - multiple axes in multiple dimensions will produce interesting 3D geometrics no doubt. is an excellent website dedicated to driving grassroots GIS uplift of communities and if we integrate smart FOSS Social Network Analysis solutions that reach beyond the proprietary mold of excellent out-of-box solutions like Valdis Krebs' Inflow we could really derive an exciting integration of FOSS -SNA and FOSS -GIS.  The OSGEO foundation might be receptive to the transformative strategy to map toxicities, areas of economic concern and opportunity, and demographics on children and the lactating ladies who nurse them.  Those succeptible to toxicity and retardation need to be protected from such damaging detriments.


We have such a rich repository of data when we carefully consider the county and city census data, poll data, property maps, pollution points, and so on. Environmental Health Watch, GCLAC, CCOAL, and the City of Cleveland Dept of Public Health all house harvests of data that could be creatively collected and collaboratively calculated and assessed for relevance to solving problems and uplifting underprivileged neighborhoods.  I hope this first and subsequent Open Houses will help us do just that.


On the hardware and infrastructure side of things we will be able to house the region's finest Center for Open Source Excellence at the Star Complex - I've personally donated my SONY VAIO Media Desktop for initiation of this work and at 2.2 GHZ with a high end 20 inch screen it should suffice to start.

I look forward to building in FOSS -OS theoretical underpinnings and understandings gleaned from great reads like the user guide and administration guide.  Our discussion Friday should focus on the most specific strategies our synergistic team should prioritize on for data collection and analysis, I think.  Gaps in data could be filled by our very own polling, surveying, and GPS-handheld driven data collection efforts.  I for one am in on all levels - what a great Action Research project to publish someday! - especially under the guidance and tutelage of great friends, mentors, and colleagues like Professors Hilary Bradbury,  David Cooperrider, Sandy Pidirit, and Peter Whitehouse of my alma mater, Case.


We need to invite representatives from FOSS thought leading organizations locally and identify FOSS first movers in the academic world like our own Derek Arnold and Jon Cline - grassroots identification of such talents has already been initiated by yours truly - we have 25 universities regionally and there is so much homegrown talent here we could create a magnet-base to attract the world's best and brightest here.  Then we can develop Drupal and other (Plone?) FOSS modules and innovations that make others take note globally.  Our East Cleveland Center could become a school like none other, inspiring those incubated in our Star incubator spaces.  Dream Big and Execute!  It only makes sense to demonstrate FOSS technology by using it to faciliate the collaboration - so a virtual system (FOSS portal) like a Drupal COIL (like could be a great way to synergize the relevant organic groups across FOSS segments - hardware, software, database, and community development all developmentally advancing.


Finally, with enough activity like that detailed above we could have great FOSS conferences select Cleveland for their next iteration - so DrupalCon could follow recently held hackers convention Notacon and pick C-town as the place to congregate and innovate. Heavy hitters like Bruce have already agreed to help us drive this and speak to the masses.


  Let's bring together the brightest we have so Cleveland can become a true mirror site of repute, where the world clicks to download the most innovative FOSS GIS solutions yet!  Drupal, Google and Yahoo will come, if we build it and do so right...


Look forward to Friday , Y'all -  The Inner Circle Evolves! 

Add Ansel Adams to your Hough Bakeries excursion

One reason I am really excited to be opening up the Inner Circle as more of a ful time cybercafe is to have a base of operations in the University Circle area, so I won't miss any of the great things that happen down there - it is worth focusing a good bit of your time and life there. And we should use every time we are in the area to soak in another great asset, whether a sculpture in the Putnam Collection or the current show at Reinberger Gallery at CIA - currently the great photographer Ansel Adams. So, before or after you swing by the Inner Circle Friday, check this show out:

Reinberger Gallery Hours For Exhibit: May 20-August 19, 2007
Tuesday - Sunday 10am-5pm
Wednesday and Friday evenings open until 9pm.
Gallery Closed Monday

11141 East Boulevard . Cleveland, OH 44106

An exhibition of 117 images by the iconic photographer Ansel Adams (1902-1984) will be on view in The Cleveland Institute of Art’s Reinberger Galleries, 11141 East Boulevard, Cleveland, from May 20 until August 19. “Ansel Adams: A Legacy” is a co-presentation with the Cleveland Museum of Art.

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Edwin will perform... the climate will be tropical

Edwin David and I were planning tomorrow's open house and he told me that a friend who is a great steel pan drum musician will be stopping by the Inner Circle around 1 PM to perform with Edwin, who will sing. Edwin will also bring his original recorded music and mix things up on the sound system - what a great way to enjoy a hot, steamy summer Cleveland afternoon.

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Bicycles, bicycles, bicycles, at the Inner Circle

It was great that at the first Inner Circle open house there were THREE representatives of the pro-bike community, so we had a chance to really brainstorm on how bicycles fit with the Inner Circle, which is in a big way. We will put many bike racks and encourage riders and commuters to make this a regular stopping point - I wish I could make our lot a "park and ride" for University Circle - it would be so much easier than trying to park there... perhaps for customer who spend so many dollars at the Inner Circle for each hour they are parked there. Also, we talked about planning hike/bike trails through Forest Hills park and creating maps of good rides all around the Inner Circle and East Cleveland, connecting with University Circle. We will want people riding down from the Heights, and over from anywhere in the surrounding neighborhoods - what are some ideas for encouraging riding through the Inner Circle?

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A concept for the kitchen - global soul food

The culinary forces now at hand at the Inner Circle include the region's king of BBQ soul, Hot Sauce Williams, and family, and roots Guyanese chef Edwin David. They are masters at preparing soul food from unique and dear places, and their cuisines draw from many cultures. Core to their cooking is grilling, yet their are significant differences in their techniques and flavors. For the Inner Circle, we should leverage the uniqueness of their expertise and allow each to express the best of their cultures and the other cultures they know. Core to the cuisine here will be grilling, but in healthy ways - Edwin is vegetarian so you know that will be a focus of the diet here. As much of the food will be local, fresh and organic as possible - that will be a core principle. But another will be that the food will have soul, and be innovative, and express the art of the creators, drawing influences from around the world.

One of the objectives of the open houses is to share with guests some food concepts and food to get feedback and input on what you - the customer - wants. Feel free to use this posting for feedback as well - whether you've made it to an open house or not. They say the customer is always right.

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