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A Northeast Ohio summer tradition put on hold due to COVID-19

Posted at 3:20 PM, Aug 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-13 15:20:03-04

CUYAHOGA FALLS, Ohio — For the first time since it opened in 1968, no crowds, legendary traffic, or music is coming from the woods at Blossom Music Center.

Performances by The Cleveland Orchestra and high profile national acts all canceled.

Cuyahoga Falls Mayor Don Walters says those cancellations mean big financial losses for the city. Without concerts, the city isn’t collecting its normal admissions tax on ticket sales.

“We budgeted $600,000 for 2020 and that’s going to be close to zero,” Walters said. “So unfortunately we’ll feel the pinch on that.”

Local businesses are also feeling the pinch. At Sarah’s Vineyard, across the street from Blossom, business is down 20%-30%

“Saturdays and Sundays there would be a matinee at Porthouse Theater that would let out just as the evening rush for the Cleveland Orchestra would show up.” Sarah’s Vineyard General Manager Sarah Altieri said. “So it would be chaotic for a couple of hours.”

But now with the music stopping at Blossom and the mad rush of fans staying home, business is steady but still not the same.

“We’re seeing it at a nice gradual pace. We still get the dinner crowd that comes in.” Altieri said. “But it’s not everyone in a hurry to go somewhere."

Although Walter admits the financial loss is difficult, there are a few silvers linings.

Including reduced calls for safety services and fast racking a road paving project on Steels Corners road that wasn’t supposed to start until 2021.

“We run all the EMS to Blossom. All those types of things, so that’s been quiet this year.” Walters said.”Next year when shows startup, they’ll have a nice smooth road."

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