The Hessler Street Fair, held in Cleveland's Hessler Street neighborhood in late May each year, is the unofficial start to the city's summer festival season. The two-day street "non-corporate, artist-friendly, all-volunteer" fair features live music, poetry readings, a variety of delicious food, street vendors, and original art. Admission is free and the fair attracts more than 10,000 visitors each year.
The fair returned in 2008 after a year's hiatus. The 2014 dates are May 17 and 18.
The Hessler Street Fair began in 1969 as a way to raise money to preserve the historic street as a residential enclave when many of the area's buildings were being bought by the institutions of University Circle. The plan succeeded and in 1975, Hessler Street was named Cleveland's first historic landmark district.
The fair was discontinued in the 1970s, but was resurrected in 1995 and has been popular ever since.
Among the many attractions at the Hessler Street Fair are close to 100 booths, run by local artists and vendors, selling a variety of eclectic art and merchandise; children's games and activities; poetry readings; food from local restaurants and food trucks; and a juried art show.
Entertainment at the Hessler Street Fair includes several live concert stages, poetry readings, a drum circle, and roaming street performers. Performers at the 2014 fair will include Cats on Holiday, JMiller Band, the Revolution Brass Band and Carlos Jones and the P.L.U.S Band.
Hours and Admission:
The Hessler Street Fair is open both days from 11am to dusk. Admission is free.
How to Get to Hessler Street:
Hessler Street and Hessler Court are nestled in the heart of University Circle, off of Bellflower and Ford Roads. Parking is available at meters around the area and in city lots. The fair asked that you consider taking RTA to the event as parking is limited. The red line rapid station is just a few blocks away on Euclid Avenue or you can take one of many buses that go up and down Euclid.
(Last updated 4-24-14)