Summer Fun Guide 2014: 42 Ways to Savor Summer

6/1: The annual Taste of Lakewood moves to Madison Park and features local favorites such as the Root Cafe, Deagan's Kitchen and Bar, Jammy Buggars and Barrio.

6/4: Who says you can't find paradise in Cleveland? Hop aboard the Nautica Queen's Wednesday Tropical Nights starting today to satisfy your Caribbean craving.

6/6: Impress that special person with a night under a sea of glowing hot air balloons (and a glass of ice wine) at the Debonne Vineyards Hot Air Balloon Night Glow Dinner.

6/7: The family that canoes together stays together (unless you end up capsized). Test your family bonds during a 5 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. evening paddle on Silver Creek Lake.

6/8: Forage for tea ingredients on a guided hike through the West Creek Reservation in Parma and learn how to make your own au naturel tea.

6/13: Returning to the stage after 30 years means grayer hair, but Bill Cosby's jokes are still sharp in his Far From Finished tour that stops at the Akron Civic Theatre.

6/13-15: Grab your slice of the "Best Pizza on the North Coast" at the Cleveland Pizza Fest at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds in Berea.

6/16: Rock Hall inductee Elvis Costello brings his first solo tour in nearly a decade to the Palace Theatre in Playhouse Square for a night of classics, fun and fedoras.

6/21: A true street party, the juried Clifton Arts and Musicfest combines live music and a variety of fine artisans from throughout the state and US.

6/21: Salute summer's longest day with the Summer Solstice Sunset at Observatory Park — one of eight recognized Dark Sky Parks in the U.S. perfect for stargazing.

6/22-9/7: Learn to appreciate yoga from a scholarly point of view as the Yoga: The Art of Transformation exhibit opens at the Cleveland Museum of Art and runs through Sept. 7.

6/24: Jimmy Buffett is still singing about beaches and cheeseburgers, and we like it that way. Jimmy Buffett and The Coral Reefer Band plays at Blossom Music Center.

Try This: Get a killer core workout and test your balance by renting a stand-up paddleboard ($10 per hour) at Fairport Harbor Lakefront Park from 10: 30 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

7/4: Skip navigating crowded city lawns and enjoy your fireworks from Progressive Field while cheering on the Cleveland Indians. Did we mention it's Dollar Dog Night?

7/9: The Tyrannosaurus rex, stegosaurus and torosaurus roar to life when Walking with Dinosaurs, based on an award-winning BBC show, claws its way back to Quicken Loans Arena.

7/11-17: There's no Tom Hanks in the stage version, but there's enough nostalgia in TrueNorth Theatre's Big, The Musical for you to remember why you never wanted to grow up.

7/12 and 13: Tend to your green thumb with the free GardenWalk Cleveland, a tour of gardens, vineyards and farms sprouting up from Old Brooklyn to Glenville.

7/25-27: Santa, his reindeer and plenty of eggnog take over Put-in-Bay for Christmas in July, as the entire island decks its halls during this rollicking three-day weekend.

7/19: Get down and dirty at 5k Foam Fest in Garrettsville with obstacles ranging from muddy slip •n' slides to foam-filled bounce houses. Race tip: Goggles are a must.

7/19: Get one step closer to sailing off into the sunset with Fair Wind's Lake Erie Sailing School. Our pick? The Instant Cruiser, where you'll take to the water for a three-day weekend.

7/19: Celebrate National Ice Cream Month with Medina County Bicycle Club's Ice Cream Odyssey Ride a trek for a sweet reward — a cone from Hartzler Family Dairy Ice Cream shop.

7/24-8/10: Oliver, the Porthouse Theatre production, opens at Blossom Music Center and runs through Aug. 10. The Oliver Twist takeoff will have you begging, "Please, sir. I want some more."

7/25: The Fray's passionate stage presence and honest lyrics is enough to make you break your plans and head to Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica to catch the Helios Tour.

7/27: Bring the family along for a night of crafts, firefly catching and a little "Kumbayah" to the Firefly Campfire at Bradley Woods Reservation.

8/1: Experience one of summer's hottest parties Twilight at the Zoo with 17 bands, food by local chefs and drinks at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.

8/1-3: See double again and again at the Twins Days Festival in Twinsburg that features a parade of pairs, a twins talent show and more during the world•s largest annual gathering of twins.

8/2: Plane tickets to Hawaii may be too expensive, but the island-style Summer Beach Party featuring surfer movie Blue Crush at Huntington Beach is a nice escape until you save up.

8/6-20: Spice things up with free dance lessons and live Latin music at the Mid-Summer Night Salsa Series on U.S. Bank Plaza 5 p.m. Aug. 6, 13 and 20.

8/7: She writes her own music, sings and plays the piano. Eight-time Grammy Award-nominated Tori Amos is the perfect act to see in the peaceful, open-air Evans Amphitheater.

8/8-9/6: Our hopes are high for the Browns this time of year. Prep for the roller coaster ahead with Dawg Pounded, which follows two Browns fans through a disappointing season.

8/9-16: You saw the commercial during the Olympics, now witness more than 12,000 participants of all kinds compete in more than 35 sports at the Gay Games 9.

8/14: The ultimate California Gurl Katy Perry comes to Quicken Loans Arena for a show sure to be filled with over-the-top costumes, killer dance moves and maybe even fireworks.

Try This: Cast a line and let someone else handle the boat, tackle, live bait and rods with Wildwood Marina's walk-on Fishing Charters specializing in perch or walleye.

Try This: Add some high-flying fun to your next hike by zooming through a mini zip line or navigating an obstacle course at Buckeye Bud's Adventure Woods in the Holden Arboretum.

8/22-24: Watch 96 regional teams compete in the Wickcliffe Italian-American Club's Cleveland Challenge Cup of Bocce while enjoying Italian entertainment and food.

8/23: The area's longest-running indie craft show is showing foodies some love with the first Cleveland Food Bazaar in Wade Oval filled with local food and culinary-related items.

8/24: With a little help from your friends — the Cleveland Orchestra — celebrate the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania hitting the U.S. with the Beatles Tribute at Blossom Music Center.

Try This: Jet Packs are no longer only for astronauts. While the average Joe still cannot fly through space, he can soar above water with Jet Pack Water Adventures in Sandusky.

8/27: Pat Benatar may claim love is a battlefield, but she won our hearts and that of her guitarist husband Neil Giraldo, performing with her at the Hard Rock Rocksino.

Try This: Quell antsy kids with a fun day full of bumper boats, mini golf and paintball at Swings-N-Things in Olmsted Township. Don't leave without ordering an ice cream cone first.

8/30-9/1: The signature watermelon sherbet and cantaloupe ice cream at the Milan Melon Festival is a local legend and worth the drive out west.

8/30-9/1: Last year's Labor Day weekend was dull without the Cleveland National Air Show. Restart the tradition with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels at Burke Lakefront Airport.

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