Monday, November 21, 2011

The Revolting Ninjas

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For the Turkey Trot on Wednesday we are having what might be the most interesting band to ever play Arnold's. I can guarantee that they will be the only band to ever play here outfitted in Ninja Costumes. They are a super talented group of local jazz musicians that have invented their own genre. Ninja Jazz. Like true ninjas, exactly who they are is even a mystery to us. They choose to remain anonymous. We have only seen their separate resumes and they are long, varied and accomplished ones. They will be covering everything from Coltrane to the White Stripes. This is their inaugural show and should be a pretty interesting night at Arnold's. We hope to see you there. You can read their Manifesto below and find out more about them on their facebook here.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

You Are Invited To Bruce And Ronda's Thanksgiving Dinner

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This is a long blog of how I came about inviting you to Bruce and Ronda's Thanksgiving dinner.  We are eating at 5pm.  Our treat.  You can bring a covered dish and if you want something beside coffee, tea or soda please bring your own.  Nothing will be sold that day.

My mom had huge Thanksgiving dinners.  We had aunts and uncles and friends and neighbors.  My mom would put the food wherever she had room.  On the stove, on the sink, on the back porch.  We only had four rooms and a back porch and I think the biggest room was 8 X 10.  That's small enough for the six of us but then we would add many many more people for dinner.  You would eat standing up, it didn't matter.  Then people would play cards or sit and talk.   

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cincinnati Shakespeare Company And Arnold's Presents Cincinnati's "BHC"

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Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!)

Arnold's and Cincinnati Shakespeare Company have defied all laws of how to run a successful Christmas play.  In it's sixth season and all but less than a handful of shows being sold out this show keeps getting funnier.  The actors are so comfortable in the roles, they take them to another level. 

This play is so close to my heart because of the friendship I have formed with the CSC.  I have told the story many times about Brian coming over to Arnold's and wondering how they were going to make ends meet, all the while having that same discussion with him.  This Holiday play truly helped me see a light at the end of the tunnel.  Over the years this play has become a part of our operating budget and is very vital to going in the direction we need to go.  The same is true with the CSC.

CSC is offering three shows in their theatre to help offset their ever growing cost of productions.  If you would like to help sponsor their end of the show you can contact Lettie Van Hemert at 381-BARD.

BHC means "Beloved Holiday Classic".

Click Here for Rick Pender's (CityBeat) review.

Below is Cincy Shakes Press Release
Back for a sixth straight year at Arnold's Bar and Grill and now on CSC’s stage, Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!!), featuring Billy Chace, Justin McCombs, Miranda McGee and Sara Clark. This show condenses all of your Beloved Holiday Classics into one hilarious evening of theater. Whether you're a Grinch or a true believer, you'll howl with laughter as Sara, Billy and Justin (and a slightly tipsy Santa) send up every thing from fruitcake to nutcrackers. Perfect for adults looking for a little extra holiday cheer!

December 4-31, 2011
Showtimes: Performances Dec. 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 27 & 28 @ 7:30pm take place at:
Arnold's Bar & Grill
210 E. Eighth St.
Cincinnati, OH 45202
Arrive early for dinner, not included with ticket.
Showtimes: Dec. 22, 23 and 31 @ 7:30pm take place at:
Cincinnati Shakespeare Company
719 Race St
Cincinnati, OH 45202
Prices: All Tickets $25 (Subscriptions, discounts & passes do not apply)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Guest Blog: Molly O'Toole from the CAC

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This week's guest blogger is the awesome Molly O'Toole. Communications & Community Engagement Director at the Contemporary Art Center. The CAC scooped her up back in 2009 and I am betting that you have noticed alot more about what they have been doing since then. We are honored that she would do a guest blog for us and here she is...

When I was asked to take a turn at blogging, I knew exactly what to write about: the time I took [fill-in-the-blank] to Arnold's.

Working at the Contemporary Arts Center, you get very good at showing off our city. Whenever our artists, speakers and guests come to town, we try to get them out and about as much as possible—connect them to things that are going on here. It's a favorite part of my job. And one of my favorite places to take them is Arnold's.

People like Shepard Fairey, Davy Rothbart, Rosson Crow and more have all experienced Cincinnati CAC-style. That not only means a stop at Arnold’s, but perhaps a tour of the sign museum, gallery openings in Brighton, shopping in OTR and Gateway Quarter, darts at Zola’s in Covington or brunch at Take the Cake and music at the Comet in Northside. We’ve done summer night baseball games that have spilled over into Fringe Festival fun at the Know Theatre; gone shopping in Oakley; gotten tattooed at Dana’s; had cocktails at the Netherland Plaza. We’ve enjoyed the view from Mt. Adams, skating on Fountain Square, Findlay Market, the parks and the universities. You name it, we’ve shown it off! And more often than not, our guests are left with a soft spot in their heart for our part of the world.

   But it all starts on our corner of 6th and Walnut. The CAC is teaming with people who are deeply involved in this city, and that enriches everyone who comes through our doors—me included. I have the good fortune of working with wildly interesting individuals who are feeding Cincinnati’s creative ecosystem in the most unique ways. Because of them, I’m always learning about some crazy cool thing happening here that’s all kinds of awesome—like the reopening of the Emery Theatre, who’s playing MusicNow and MidPoint, or Yo-Yo Ma being simulcast on Fountain Square. Needless to say, being involved in the arts reveals a Cincinnati that is bright, connected, bustling and energetic. The view from where we stand tends to look pretty good. Many of our guests make the kind of connections here that turn into fruitful, enduring relationships. No wonder so many and end up coming back. I don't blame them at all. 

So, if you see me at Arnold’s, say hello. I’ll introduce you to whomever I’m with and, depending on how the night goes, maybe you’ll end up in one of these pictures too!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


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At the strike of midnight on the third Thursday of every November, France erupts in massive celebration in honor of the unveiling (or should we say uncorking) of the Beaujolais Nouveau wine. Beaujolais Nouveau, which is a young wine (only 6 weeks old) comes from a region south of Burgundy in France. It’s rumored that the light-bodied and fruity wine must be finished by Christmastime and the French government has put regulations delaying the wine’s release until the third week in November. This means the arrival of the new Beaujolais is warmly welcomed in France. All over the country, grand traditions have developed in honor of the release of the Beaujolais, with the biggest festival taking place in Beaujeu, the capital of the Beaujolais region. This little city springs to life during this weekend in November, hosting a massive party called Sarmentelles. The party gets its name from the french word for cuttings from the canes of grapevines called sarments, which are burned in the center of town just prior to the grand midnight unveiling. Then the huge barrels are opened to much fanfare and party-goers indulge in the new wine for the festival’s 3 day duration. Other areas in France also boisterously celebrate the arrival of the Beaujolais Nouveau. Lyon hosts the Beaujolympiades (Beaujolympics), marking the release of the wine with music and fireworks followed by 2 days of sampling. In Paris, restaurants and bistros host their Beaujolais Nouveau parties, staying open through the night and uncorking hundreds of bottles after midnight. Wherever you may be traveling in France, this is a great night to celebrate life, wine, and a grand French tradition.

Wherever you may be traveling in Cincinnati, this is a great night to celebrate at Arnold's.  We are welcome to have the French Alliance Of Cincinnati.  We hope you enjoy our meal.


Assiette-de Charcuterie aux Chévre
Assorted meats and cheeses with olive tapenade and warm red wine onion marmalade.  Served with bread.  9.95

Au Confit de Tomato et Sardines aux Fromage… Crisp French bread loaf topped with Arnold’s delicious tomato sauce, sardines and cheese.  Baked until golden brown.   8.95


SALADE LYONNAISE… Finely chopped lettuce topped with bacon, red onions and a poached egg.  Dressed with a warm vinegar sweet dressing.   7.95


 AUBERGINE GRATINESS … Eggplant, Beaujolais wine, tomatoes, mushrooms, carrots and onion slow roasted with garlic and fresh herbs.   Topped with thick sliced potatoes and gruyere cheese.  Served with crusty bread.   15.95

PETIT SALE AUX LENTILS… Gammon (hind leg quarter “ham” of pork)  Flash fried with olive oil, coffee and cracked red pepper.  Served over pureed garlic green lentils and topped with fennel leek ratatouille.   15.95
BEEF DAUBE… Beef cubes marinated in beaujolais wine, cloves, carrot juice, orange zest and onions.  This marinates for 24 hours then is slow simmered with whole garlic and olives.  I am serving this over cabbage sauteed with a touch of olive oil and plenty of cracked black pepper.  15.95

CHICKEN BEAUJOLAIS… Quarter chicken roasted with mixed peppers, onions and fresh diced tomatoes.  When time to serve we place on the grill to warm.  Served over seasoned rice and topped with goat cheese.   15.95

Friday, November 11, 2011

Photographer Fridays: Roebling Bridge Special Edition

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On Monday November 7th, 9 members of the Club Blatz photography club got permission to ascend the southern pier of the Roebling Suspension Bridge. For photographer Friday each of them sent in one photo from the shoot. So, here they are. Enjoy! Oh, and don't miss their photo exhibit here tomorrow night (and every second Saturday of the month) on the second floor.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Guest Blog: Rome Ntukogu, Director of Far-I-Rome Productions

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You may not know Rome Ntukogu by name, but if your from downtown or OTR, I bet you have heard of one of his and his company's events. Far-I-Rome Productions are the ones behind The Clifton Heights Music Festival, OTR Skate, Turntables and Snares, and a whole laundry list of other events. They just set up there new offices at 1317 Main St. and if you are planning something big, they might just be who you want to get a hold of.

Rome Ntukogu
Far-I-Rome Productions
A special events planning, and 
marketing company based in Cincinnati, OH
1317 Main Street, 45202

A Scene Of Musical Chairs

I was asked to contribute to this blog recently and thought, “what the hell are you supposed to talk about?” After some time in contemplation, thankfully a friend of mine said “Hey Rome, you are always running all over the place, what's happening this weekend?...” and here we are.

My Cincinnati is comprised of a constant shift of 'scenes' vying to attain and maintain relevance. This is a city built on knowing about the cool things that very few are aware of. The 'scene' is based on discovery, select invites to crowds that inevitably band together to elect a spokesperson. When it becomes evident that you don't recognize the usual 75% of the people that surround you at a show then it is time to migrate to the next 'scene'. We have flashes of hotspots in which talented bands, businesses, promoters, press, and performers allocate most of their efforts, making said location the 'talk of the town'. Some create the scene, some are the scene, others graze on the outskirts committed to taking in all of it. I suppose this piece will be about the latter.

Cincinnati/Kentucky is an exceptional place to sample so much of the local culture, partly because of this constant 'scene' shift. We have pockets of people, within local communities, fanning the flames and putting what they are passionate about on display for the masses to consume. In one weekend I had the privilege of attending a beer tasting in Hyde Park, Final Friday in OTR finishing at The Pendleton (amazing by-the-way), a Jazz/Funk show atArnold's Bar, an Indie/Rock band at Northside Tavern, touched base at Mayday, caught a Bunk News event at The Mockbee, a Ska band at Southgate House, a Hip-Hop show in Clifton Heights, an impromptu street-side dance party in OTR, and then brunch in the Gaslight on Sunday. Believe it or not this barely scratches the surface of what we have available to us everyday.

You've seen us around, we are those fans rooted to a spot, happily doing the “Cincinnati Stance” with one hand in pocket, the other on a drink, thoughtfully bobbing our heads to the awesomeness emanating from the stage. I feel that being on the outskirts of the 'scene' is definitely something to cherish, it allows one to play a very important role in building into each community. Enjoying the experience, supporting motivated individuals, I will be happily doing my 'Cincinnati Stance” on any given weekend. Godspeed on the road you choose, and Cheers!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Guest Blog: Mike Amann, owner of BLDG Refuge

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Today's guest blogger is Mike Amann from the BLDG. This guy is sneaking some serious, heavy hitting, International artists into his small inconspicuous Pike St. gallery in Covington. Having them leave their Mark on Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky for years to come. We feel pretty lucky to have someone so devoted to bringing these level artists into town and you probably should to.

So many times I have found myself lost in conversation about art happening all over the world. I'm not sure when but one day I decided that Kentucky was going to be one of those places that others were talking about. I wanted people rattle off a list of U.S. cities where one might travel to see amazing street art and have Cincinnati be on that list. I am Mike Amann owner of one of The BLDG and this is my story.

The BLDG is an urban contemporary creative refuge located just across the river. It's an unexpected destination where artists and creative folks from around the world come to work and play. The business model is simple, if there is an artist that I love doing something unique, I contact them.  I invite them to show in my gallery and spend some time in an area of the U.S. they probably haven't seen.

It all started in 2009 with an artist collective from Newcastle, England known as Prefab 77. They debuted their work to the U.S. at our opening show.

Since the opening we have hosted several shows, among them are a couple of our favorites; The London Police, a pair of geezers from London via Amsterdam, whose lads dawn buildings around the world. I first met these guys in Miami when they were participating in a curated mural installation, Primary Flight. We spoke for a bit and the next thing they knew they were on a plane destined for CVG.

Our most recent project was a two week artist in residence with world renowned street artist Vhils. This guy arrived with only a suitcase and in two weeks created an entire show from found objects carefully plucked from nooks and crannies all over the city. Did I mention he also jackhammered away for a solid 8 hours to create the incredible mural seen as you enter downtown from 5th street. I hear it was recently featured as a cut away on the prime time NBC drama Harry's Law.

Ahhhh....but the best is yet to come. I am constantly being inspired to take on new projects and try new things. The BLDG is a place, a process, a collaboration.We are, copious creatives, purveyors of dissidence and invite you to share the scene. Art available for consumption at

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Guest Blog: Arnold's, Autism, A Kind Stranger, and an Epiphany by James Cira

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Todays guest blogger is James Cira, we call him Jimmy around here and he has to be one of the kindest Gentleman to have ever walked through the doors at Arnold's. He has been an off and on regular since way back in  1993 and we are proud to call him our friend. You are hard pressed to find a friendlier guy to pull up a stool next to.   I am truly touched by this story and I'm sure you will be too.

Off and on, since 1993, I have enjoyed some of the best moments of my life at Arnold's.  Even from the first moment of coming to one of our city's most treasured "watering holes," I was always enamored by the feeling of almost going back in time.  If you look upon past photos of Arnold's, you can easily tell that not much has changed over the years at 210 East Eighth Street.  Many times I would sit at that well-worn bar and try to imagine the different stories and tall tales that have been spoken through the years over it's aged, wooden surface  The many moments of a joyful first encounter, or even some sage advice passed between a bartender and a patron.  I just never imagined that I would experience a life altering moment at this same bar.
It was an early Spring evening in 2010 when I was enjoying several drinks with a very dear friend of mine who lived close by at the time. At that moment, I received a call from my newly designated ex-wife.  To say that we had a rough divorce, would be a severe understatement.  So, as anyone who has been in my situation can attest to, receiving a call from an "ex" while at a bar, typically has disaster written all over it.
This call was quite different in the way that most life changing calls have a habit of being.  She was not calling to yell harsh criticisms, or to remind me how glad she was to no longer be my wife.  This was the call that confirmed what I had learned earlier:  That my five year-old son was indeed autistic.  It is something that myself and my close friends had suspected for quite sometime.  So, one day on my visitation, my son Sal and I went to Children's Hospital to have him tested.  Being a parent, it is so difficult to sit and watch while your child struggle with basic socialization skills and not quite being at the same level as other children.  For the longest time, I chose the path of denial.  In fact, that was the same path she had chosen, until she had received a second opinion.
Even though we were quite certain that he was autistic, it was one of those rare moments that I was hoping to be wrong and that my ex-wife was right.  That is not how it played out and, when I found out for sure, I was devastated.  Of course, how I handled things then compared to now is quite different. That being said, after many shots and being consoled by my very good friend for most of the night, the stranger on the stool next to me spoke. From what I remembered about him from an alcohol induced haze, is that he was a very tall, young, good-looking guy that I had never seen before at Arnold's.  He was a bright, young guy from Boston that was in town for a six-week management training program with his company.  For the rest of the night, the three of us sat at that bar discussing, my wonderful son and his autism.
From that moment on, my life has changed quite a lot.  I remembered waking up that very next day feeling energized and taking charge of my son's disease.  I made a vow to myself that very night to take command of my life, and despite all of the differences between my ex-wife and myself, I will always be the best father that I could be.  So, when I think of Arnold's, I not only think of all the wonderful moments I have spent there with very dear friends, but I think of the night that I became a man and a father to a wonderful boy with autism.  It also speaks to the mystique of Arnold's.  It is a place where, on any given night, you can meet a stranger with a sympathetic ear and walk out as good friends.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Guest Blog: Feoshia Henderson

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Today's guest blog is one for all the fellow local bloggers out there from Feoshia Henderson. Feoshia is a former Cincinnati Enquirer reporter turned blogger, freelance content producer and writer for Soapbox Cincinnati. She loves to write about people, places and businesses around the city, and sharing amazing stories.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Photographer Fridays: Debbie Crowe

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This week's photographer is the very talented Debbie Crowe. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

In case you missed It...

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Here is the video of the Channel 5 news story yesterday about the Yuengling tapping. Thanks to for the video