CLEVELAND (WJW) There are a lot of cool places and people in Cleveland that you may not have heard about.
Like the winery in the heart of the inner city. Chateau Hough has been around for more than 10 years and their focus is about more than just growing great grapes but building community. “My wife and I started a nonprofit about 15 years ago neighborhood solutions to help people coming out of incarnation.” Chateau Hough Founder Mansfield Fraser said.
Or how about the attorney turned ice cream sandwich entrepreneur? Cathy’s Gourmet Ice Cream Sandwiches now has two locations but started right in downtown Cleveland. “I knew for Cathy’s I wanted people to come in and have an amazing stellar exquisite desert experience in a fast-casual setting.” Owner Cathy Cross said.
But how do you get folks who don’t know Cleveland to find these Black-owned businesses and hidden treasures? Destination Cleveland is the city’s biggest cheerleader and promoter.
And is ramping up efforts to help attract visitors and folks who live here to visit Black-owned businesses.
“When you really get down to the fabric of what makes Cleveland, Cleveland so much of that is in our Black neighborhoods it’s part of our history and it’s part of who we are for generations and we need to celebrate that and make sure others recognize that.”
Destination Cleveland CEO David Gilbert says they’ve always promoted Black-owned businesses, but the protests this spring in Cleveland for racial justice and the riot in May brought home the need to do more.
Gilbert says Destination Cleveland is committed to working for ways to dismantle systematic racism and create more inclusion.
“We really want to play an important role we know that there are incredible ties to the growth of this community the growth of the Black community and the industry we represent,” Gilbert said.
On the Destination Cleveland website, they are highlighting Black-owned businesses and experiences that you can find throughout the city, places like Cathy’s and Chateau Hough. Their list includes many others ranging from places to eat to places to experience history and place to become part of the fabric of the community.
“Destination Cleveland’ supported Cathy’s when we reopened, and we had a huge event to support the George Floyd family fund and we donated 100 percent of our proceeds to that family. To see Destination Cleveland rise to the occasion to be there for the families and business owners it was nice to see,” Cross said.