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Work Flow brings yoga to the office, stretching minds and limbs together

Need a stress reliever for you and your employees? Try Work Flow Yoga, the yoga studio that comes to you.
 
Meredith Amann, owner of Work Flow, moved back to her hometown of Cincinnati in December after spending about six years in San Francisco, two years in Philadelphia and three months in New York. In March, she started SpringBoard Cincinnati and finished in May—she launched Work Flow in June.
 
Work Flow classes are based in the tradition of Ashtanga and Hatha yoga, and they focus on safe alignment and maintaining the connection to your breathing. The sessions are non-competitive and are designed for beginners and those with more experience. They are 30-60 minutes and can be held once or twice a week in your workplace.
 
“It’s nice to have flexibility in terms of me coming to them,” says Amann. “It’s one person traveling as opposed to a group of people—and it’s one car on the road instead of 20.”
 
When Amann decided to pursue her yoga training and move to Cincinnati, she thought about a brick-and-mortar studio. But she decided she wanted to offer yoga to those who sat at their desks all day long, and a traveling studio made more sense for that.
 
To date, Amann has taught yoga classes at a handful of small nonprofit companies. If you’re interested in having a class taught at your office, call 513-370-9088 or email Amann at meredith@yogaworkflow.com to schedule a meeting.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Artbeat brings unique artwalk concept to Short Vine

Janet Berberich and Ben Jason Neal of Eye Candy Design wanted to find a way to introduce people to the businesses on Short Vine and artwork at the same time. Their solution was Artbeat on Short Vine, which is held the first Friday of each month.
 
“In the past, Short Vine survived because of the entertainment options it offered, but we want to give people another reason to visit,” says Berberich.
 
The idea is to showcase different pieces of artwork in each venue, and people walk between venues to see the full show. Venues like Bogart’s, the 86 Club, Neihoff Design, 71 Gallery, Beelistic Tattoo and Eye Candy participated in the August Artbeat.
 
“Artbeat is about walking a path,” says Neal. “It implies the beat of music and the heartbeat of the street.”
 
The dead end in front of Kroger gives Short Vine the feel of a neighborhood within a larger town, says Berberich. It has a little bit of everything—entertainment, food and art.
 
“Our goal is to bring in a crowd that’s outside of the area’s demographic, and bring new energy and rejuvenation,” says Neal.
 
The next Artbeat is scheduled for Sept. 6. If you’re interested in participating, contact Neal at 513-371-3782 or ben@creativeeyecandy.com. Display art, live music, the spoken word, performance art and pop-up gallery projects are all encouraged.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Cumin undergoing changes with new chef

Cumin Eclectic Cuisine has seen a number of changes in the past few weeks, including a new chef and menu. Matthew Cranert, who has been the chef for four months at M Wood Fired Oven next door, plans to rely on simple ingredients and good cooking at Cumin.
 
Cranert was born and raised in northern California and spent his summers working in his grandfather’s restaurant in Hawaii. After graduating high school, he attended the Culinary Institute of America and worked in several restaurants in San Francisco. He then returned to Hawaii, and worked under chefs like Sam Choy and Roy Yamaguchi, who taught him to balance French and Asian flavors.
 
Cranert, his wife Stacey and their 7-year-old recently moved to Cincinnati for the opportunity to work in the food scene. Before M, Cranert worked in different restaurants around the city, including Senate. Now Cranert spends his nights running back and forth between the kitchen at M and the kitchen at Cumin.
 
“I want to bring more of what’s going on in other cities to Cincinnati,” he says. “I’ve lived all over and traveled a lot, and want to go head-to-head with New York City and Chicago.”
 
Growing up, Cranert was exposed to Latino and Asian flavors, but was influenced by his mother’s Southern cooking and Hawaiian food as well.
 
“I like to call upon all different flavors,” he says. “There’s a good meld between Asian, Southern and French cooking. People specialize in certain cuisines, but I think you need to learn to throw down with everything, and we’re going to be doing a bit of everything at Cumin.”
 
Cranert wants to make Cumin the best it can be. He has already flipped Cumin’s menu, and plans to change it weekly.

By Caitlin Koenig
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New food tradition coming to Over-the-Rhine

On Aug. 10, Over-the-Rhine restaurants and businesses will be participating in the first ever Taste of Over-the-Rhine. The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. in Washington Park.
 
Taste of Over-the-Rhine celebrates the tastes, flavors and sounds of OTR through food, art, music, shopping and the people of the neighborhood.
 
The event is being put on by Tender Mercies, which provides permanent housing to about 150 formerly homeless adults who have mental illnesses. Its building and residences are located at 12th, Race and Elm streets in OTR. As a member of the community, Tender Mercies wants to be a neighborhood partner for OTR residents and business owners.
 
“The event is meant to provide another community and neighborhood element to OTR,” says Casey Gilmore, partner at Cincy Events Management. “All of the businesses that are participating are locally owned, not chains.”
 
The food and drink vendors that are participating in the event are The Anchor-OTR, Eli’s Barbeque, Coffee Emporium, Findlay Market, The Lackman, Lavomatic, MOTR Pub, Taste 513, Venice on Vine, Moerlein, Lucy Blue Pizza, Kaze and Street Pops. Food trucks Dojo Gelato, Café de Wheels and Urban Grill will also be part of Taste of Over-the-Rhine.
 
All OTR restaurants were asked to participate—featured restaurants said “yes” based on their staffing for the weekend.
 
Food and drink prices will be low, around $4 or $5. There will also be a tasting element for dogs, where they can try out different dog food from Pet Wants, the Findlay Market pet store.
 
There will be music too. The main stage will feature acts such as Joanie Whittaker, Peraza Music Workshop, Hayden Kaye, The Almighty Get Down, Cla-Zels, Golden Shoes, Magnolia Mountain and Wussy.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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New online tool aims to keep Cincinnati residents engaged in their neighborhoods

On July 24, the City of Cincinnati adopted Nextdoor, a free, private social network for you, your neighbors and your community. The goal is to improve community engagement between the City and its residents, and foster neighbor-to-neighbor communications.
 
Each of Cincinnati’s 52 neighborhoods will have its own private Nextdoor neighborhood website, which is accessible only to residents of that neighborhood. City administrations and several city departments will also use Nextdoor to share important news, services, programs, free events and emergency notifications to residents, but they won’t be able to see who is registered to use the site or the conversations among residents.
 
Founded in 2010 in San Francisco, Nextdoor’s mission is to bring back a sense of community to the neighborhood. The site was tested in 175 neighborhoods across the country, and results showed that neighborhoods had some of the same issues, plus a variety of different issues.
 
“We all remember what our neighborhood experience was like as kids, when everyone knew each other, looked out for one another and stayed in the community longer," says Sarah Leary, co-founder of Nextdoor. “We want to invoke that nostalgia for neighborhoods.”
 
To date, Nextdoor is being used by about 17,000 neighborhoods across the country. In June, Nextdoor partnered with New York City and Mayor Bloomberg to communicate with the city’s 8.3 million residents. The site plans to roll out in other major cities like Cincinnati over the course of the next several months.
 
Nextdoor also recently released its iPhone app. “We’re really putting the lifeline of the neighborhood into the palm of the residents’ hands,” says Leary. “The common thread is an interest in using technology to make connections with neighbors. But it doesn’t stop there—once people have an easy way to communicate, they’re more likely to get together in the real world.”
 
You can sign up for Nextdoor on its website, or download the app in the App Store.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Flowers From Fatima takes love of gardening to hair accessories

Growing up, Fatima Spencer spent a lot of time gardening with her father.
 
“My dad started a community beautification program in the low-income neighborhood I grew up in,” she says.
 
His goal was to revitalize the neighborhood through flowers and gardening, and change how it looked and how people felt about it. While helping her father garden, Spencer would wear real flowers in her hair, and eventually, she started making hair accessories with artificial flowers.
 
She started her online Etsy business, Flowers From Fatima, after her father passed away in December 2009. Her goal is to bring beauty and light to the world, along with new trends.
 
“I don’t see many women accessorizing with hair flowers,” she says.
 
Flowers From Fatima is mainly online, but Spencer sells her hair flowers in a few salons—one in North Carolina, one in Florida and one downtown Cincinnati—and at Mizti on Ludlow Avenue.
 
Spencer hopes to broaden her client base and sell her flowers in other local boutiques before possibly starting one of her own.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Local ad agency competes for cash prize from Fifth Third Bank

Red212, a female-owned advertising agency, is competing for a $10,000 cash prize from Fifth Third Bank. The competition is part of Fifth Third’s new “Curious Customer” ad campaign, which highlights the stories of real business customers. The campaign features the stories of local businesses that have relied on Fifth Third to help them achieve their visions.
 
Before Red212, its president and CEO Anne Chambers worked in a small production unit at P&G. The company decided to divest of non-core assets, and asked if Chambers wanted to purchase it. She put a team together and in the end, won the bid, with financing from Fifth Third.
 
Red212 was nominated for the competition by the local Fifth Third Business Banking team because it’s a great example of a curious customer, which is due to Chambers’ inspiration and how her business has grown and changed over the years.
 
First place wins $10,000; Fifth Third will also award $5,000 to the second place business and $2,500 to the third place business.
 
The contest runs through Sept. 30. You can vote online at 53.com/curiosityatwork.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Madeira soon to be home to Woodland Vistas

Woodland Vistas, a new townhome project, will be developed by Andy Howe from Cranewoods Development and will be designed by CR architecture + design. Construction was halted on the project when the market went south, and Howe purchased the property, threw out the old developer’s plans and drew up new ones.
 
Howe, a Cincinnati native, previously purchased two stalled Cincinnati projects, redesigned them, recapitalized and sold them out. He just completed the conversion of a 1901 historic district stable and livery built by the Cincinnati Gas Light and Coke Company downtown into seven urban lofts. Woodland Vistas is Howe’s fifth project in Cincinnati.
 
At Woodland Vistas, Howe down-densed the number of units from the previous developer’s plan, and is in the process of having it redesigned into a 16-unit authentic arts and crafts community. The townhomes will be grouped in twos and threes, with two floors each.
 
There is one existing building on the property that will be transformed with similar details as the “to be built” buildings, says Howe. 

In addition to the river view, location and architecture, the private lane will have paver walks and drives, gas streetlights and a gas light at every door, plus an entertaining view terrace. The upper units will have Craftsman arbor patios with summer kitchens and planting beds, while the common “view terrace” will have a Craftsman arbor, fire pit and a restored set of coin binoculars from Niagra Falls, complete with a brass plaque that gives the dates the binoculars were in actual use at the Falls.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Local wedding vendors start studio in Newport

Kristen Becker of Five Dot Design, Marti Heard of Marti’s Floral Designs, Kelly Ledford of Cinci Makeup, Jacalyn Mains of JMM Photography and Julie Schmidt of Cincy Event Planning started out as a group of wedding vendors who were looking for office space to accommodate themselves and all of their stuff. But the ladies of 915 Monmouth knew it needed to be eclectic, just like them.
 
Heard initially found the space on Monmouth Street in Newport. It wasn’t much to look at, but after six months of renovations, the space is now a mix of contemporary and reclaimed pieces that reflect who the women are.
 
915 Monmouth officially opened in October 2011, and it’s not just used as an office for wedding consultations and makeup trials. It’s also a space that members of the community can rent for weddings and receptions, baby showers, bridal showers, luncheons and personal parties.
 
The women of 915 Monmouth have also hosted three Junk in the Trunk events, which serve as a flea market for brides-to-be. Before the event, former brides are invited to drop off ceremony or reception decorations they no longer want, and then future brides can come and shop.
 
“We don’t want to be cookie-cutter or like other wedding vendors,” says Becker. “And although it’s not a new concept to have multiple vendors under one roof, it’s different to have all of us working in the studio and not just taking up one corner of the studio.”
 
And just because a bride books one of the women for her wedding doesn’t mean she has to book all five vendors. “There’s no pressure or competition,” says Schmidt.
 
915 Monmouth was featured in the before and after section of Design*Sponge, a Brooklyn-based design blog.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Huit to bring huge flavor to the Cincinnati restaurant scene

Although Huit doesn’t have a physical restaurant location yet, its ribs are already making a big splash with Cincinnati foodies. Owners Jennifer Eng, Tobias Harris and Trang Vo have taken their ribs to food festivals around town—most recently, they were at the Asian Food Festival.
 
“We sold out by about 75 percent the first day,” says Harris. “People really liked our food and kept asking where they could get it.”
 
Eng, Harris and Vo hope to bring a taste of international flavor to Cincinnati, but they don’t want to be thought of as an Asian restaurant or a rib place. They hope to carve their own niche in the restaurant scene.
 
Harris, who has lived in the Cincinnati area for 10 years, wants to expose diners to new experiences at Huit.
 
The menu at Huit—which means “eight” in French—will be small, but will pack a flavorful punch.
 
The three owners of Huit have grown up in families that love to eat, but they all went to college for design. Harris attended architectural school in Asia and began designing hotels. He came to the United States for graduate school—since then, Harris has designed restaurants and even worked for one of the biggest restaurant designers in Chicago.
 
“I’ve traveled all over the world and am always eating,” he says. “In restaurants, I’m all about the taste of it, the soul. If the restaurant doesn’t feel yummy, there’s no point.”
 
At Huit, Trang will be responsible for everything from the design to the build-out; Eng is in charge of creating unique food and drinks; and Harris as the chef is going back to his childhood when he helped his mother and seven aunts cook.
 
By January 2014, look for Huit either downtown or in Covington or Northside—they’re still in negotiations for a space but have several options. Harris hopes to have the restaurant’s grand opening next spring.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Meatball Kitchen to host pop-up dinner; restaurant coming soon

Need something quick, cheap and yummy for dinner? Stop by the Kitchen Factory in Northside tomorrow for Meatball Kitchen’s pop-up dinner. It’s from 6 to 9 p.m., and will feature a simple menu of meatballs and a special, a bacon cheddar meatball burger.
 
Meatball Kitchen doesn’t currently have a storefront, but owner Dan Katz says that in about four months, he’ll be opening a location in Clifton on Vine Street. It’s going to be like an upgraded Chipotle, he says, with counter service and an inexpensive menu. The physical restaurant will also serve liquor
 
“It’s amazing to be part of the foodie scene here,” says Katz. “The food is great, and I really want it to be the future of fast food one day. I feel like eating well isn’t a luxury, and it’s nice to be able to go somewhere and spend less than $10 for a whole meal. We shouldn’t be making a big deal out of wanting to eat well.”
 
Katz’s meatball recipe is something he’s been working on for a while. His concept is that you can take any recipe and turn it into a meatball. For example, he served a gyro-style meatball sandwich at one of Meatball Kitchen’s pop-up dinners.
 
Right now, Katz gets all of his ingredients at Jungle Jim’s, but he wants to eventually bake his own bread and get his meat from a butcher at Findlay Market.
 
“My approach is a bit different, and it’s a little bit of a surprise,” says Katz.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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New bicycle lanes in the East End to open soon

For three years, residents of the East End met with the Department of Transportation and City Council to come up with a plan for a safer, more pleasant neighborhood. And by the end of the month, the orange barrels throughout the East End will be gone, and the longest, flattest bicycle route in the city will be open.
 
Construction has been done in stages, and everything from Delta Avenue to downtown has been redone as part of the plan. The length of bicycle lanes between Congress Avenue and St. Andrews was opened last year, and this year, the lanes between St. Andrews and downtown will be completed, says East End resident Jackie Weist.
 
The bicycle lanes are, in part, an effort to reduce the noise coming from US-50 and US-52. There are now engine brake signs along the highways, but that hasn’t eliminated the noise. Residents hope the bicycle lanes will force drivers to slow down and reduce the amount of traffic through the neighborhood.
 
The East End bicycle facility was part of the 2010 Bicycle Transportation Plan. The area is ideal because it’s flat, it connects to the Ohio River Trail where the East End ends, and it goes by Lunken Airport and along Riverside Drive.
 
“We hope the new bicycle lanes will bring more bicyclists to the area and bring awareness to what’s going on down here,” says Weist.
 
There’s a lot of history in the East End—a steamboat captain’s home has been remodeled, and rock walls and wrought iron are prevalent. It’s also home to Lunken Airport, the oldest commercial airport in the United States, and the oldest Yacht Club in Ohio.
 
Prior to the official ribbon cutting, the neighborhood is planning a clean up of the area, and may be followed by dinner at BrewRiver Gastropub. Queen City Bike is working with the East End Community Council to plan the event. For more information on the ribbon cutting, check out the Bike Program calendar.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Findlay After Four gets shoppers to the market on Thursdays

On the weekends, Findlay Market is packed with shoppers and vendors, but during the week, things quiet down, especially later in the day. The goal of Findlay After Four is to promote shopping at the market on Thursdays between 4 and 6 p.m.
 
“We hope that this will drive more shoppers to the market between 4 and 6 p.m., and begin to chip away at the confusion around market hours,” says Karen Kahle, resource development director for Findlay Market. “There’s a perception that the market isn’t always reliably open until 6 p.m., and we hope to convince those merchants who don’t remain open to stay open because there is more money to be made if they do.”
 
Every Thursday, Findlay Market has a variety of activities planned to encourage people to shop. This week, there will be a cooking demonstration by a guest chef, and recipe cards will be handed out so shoppers can take them and find ingredients for the dish. Christian Moerlein and MadTree beers will be available at the OTR Biergarten, and there will be a raffle and giveaways.  
 
The first Findlay After Four was July 11, and Kahle says she is pleased with the result.
 
“We want to learn more about what the hours of operation are that shoppers want and need in order to conveniently and consistently shop at Findlay Market,” she says. However, it will take more than a handful of people requesting extended hours of operation to make extended hours financially feasible.
 
Findlay After Four is spearheaded by Julie Gosdin of Wine Me, Dine Me; Bob Schwartz of 5chw4rz blog; Annette Wick of TheseWritingShoes blog; and Barb Cooper from Daisy Mae’s.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Hinge upcycles, recycles vintage pieces

Walnut Hills is now home to Hinge, a vintage home goods and upcycled furniture store, which opened at the end of June.
 
Hinge owners Amanda Wilson and David Piper also do custom projects—they’ll take clients'  furniture and make them fresh again. Piper also creates large-scale murals and custom wallpaper.
 
After high school, Wilson, a Monroe native, moved to Chicago for college. She started working in pharmaceutical research and then became a professional triathlete. She eventually returned to the research industry, working during the day and crafting at night.
 
While in Chicago, Wilson met Piper, a Dallas native and full-time artist. The two realized they could make amazing pieces and decided to start a business together.
 
“Our eye is what sets us apart,” Wilson says. “When we see an old piece of furniture or rusty item, we come up with amazing ideas of what it ‘can’ be.”
 
Hinge has some unique, one-of-a-kind pieces for sale, and Wilson and Piper have gone into people’s homes and offered their design services.
 
“Coming from Chicago, we hope to bring a bit of big city design to Walnut Hills,” Wilson says. “There, we were flooded with ideas and inspiration from our surroundings, museums and the overall city space, and we hope to serve up a bit of contemporary design with rustic edges here.”
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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Find the perfect fit at Mizti

Mizti, the only women’s shoe store in Clifton, opened Oct. 30. The store offers women’s shoes and accessories, such as handbags, scarves, sarongs, jewelry, iPad holders and wallets.
 
Although Mizti is small, owner Tabatha Adkins says her level of service is among the highest around.
 
“Department stores and other places are more self-serve,” she says. “I offer an intimate setting and personal attention to my customers.”
 
Mizti is open Tuesday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. While the shop is closed Mondays, Adkins will open for appointments that day.
 
Adkins travels to trade shows in New York, Atlanta and Chicago to find the latest trends for her shop. Shoe prices average between $39 and $89—boots and booties range from $59 to $159. Adkins carries sizes 5 ½ to 11; this fall, she will stock more shoes in sizes 12 and 13, as well as wide calf boots.
 
In a twist on traditional retail space, Adkins reserves 5 to 9 p.m. Saturdays for parties. And before the end of summer, she will start hosting Diva Parties, where a group of friends can come in and try on shoes. Hostesses and party guests will receive discounts on their purchases.
 
“I want to be an outlet where women can come and buy shoes and accessories,” says Adkins.
 
By Caitlin Koenig
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