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Lakesider News

2022 in Review | Education 

By Kevin Greer, Lakeside Communications Manager 

When looking back on the 2022 Chautauqua season, Lakeside’s Director of Education John Mann was pleased with the impact of the summer’s programming. More than 10,760 Lakesiders participated in educational programming, including special exhibits, lectures, family programs and more.  

Special Exhibits  

The 2022 summer got off to a great start with the ‘RISE ABOVE: Tuskegee Airmen & WASP’ traveling exhibit over Memorial Day Weekend. Over five days, nearly 1,000 Lakesiders viewed the Commemorative Air Force film series that brings to life the history and legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen and Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) through an immersive theater experience.  

Another special exhibit was the Lyman Boat Works Historical Display stationed on the Hotel Lakeside lawn for the Lakeside Wooden Boat Show. More than 600 people visited the mobile exhibit featuring artifacts, historical markers and boats from each decade.  

Chautauqua Lecture Series 

The Chautauqua Lecture Series is a key part of summer programming at Lakeside. Each week, lectures and workshops are centered around a theme to challenge us and help us learn and grow together. In 2022, themes included “Authors & Writing,” “Great Lakes Lore” and “The Supreme Court.”  

One Chautauqua Lecture Series theme that captured Lakesiders’ attention was “World War II” Week. From June 27-July 1, seven lectures were held with leading historians, along with two living history programs and a special music premiere at Hoover Auditorium performance. A total of 1,549 Lakesiders attended World War II activities during the week. 

Dr. Craig L. Symonds, Professor Emeritus of History at the United States Naval Academy, drew a crowd of 150 people in Orchestra Hall during his two lectures.  

As part of World War II week, 617 people filed into Hoover Auditorium for the premiere of Michael Shirtz’s composition, “To Rise Above: Journey of a Tuskegee Airman.” This five-movement jazz narrative brings to life Lt. Col. Harold Brown’s 2017 memoir, Keep Your Airspeed Up: The Story of a Tuskegee Airman. 

Another popular theme was The Supreme Court Week (Aug. 1-5). Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Ohio State University Lawrence Baum gave two lectures, and a total of 235 people attended. Former Justice of the Supreme Court of Ohio Terrence O’Donnell drew a crowd of 104 Lakesiders for his lecture. 

Living History

This season introduced a new Living History series, featuring portrayals of important figures throughout history.  

During World War II Week, two Living History shows were very popular. Linda Palko Witkowski’s portrayal of Rear Admiral Grace Hopper and Sherrie Tolliver’s Rosie the Riveter drew a combined crowd of over 300 to the Steele Memorial Bandstand.  

During Supreme Court Week, nearly 100 watched Juliette Regnier’s portrayal of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

This intergenerational program will continue in 2023 for Lakeside’s Sesquicentennial Celebration with a new lineup of portrayals in Hoover Auditorium. 

Jazz Week

Jazz Week (June 13-17) was a huge success. It celebrated Jazz through participation in workshops, lectures, concerts and interactive performances. The week featured artists-in-residence and guest artists, including Michael Shirtz, Chris Coles, Dwight Bailey, Sam Blakeslee and Evelyn Wright. Close to 2,000 people attended Jazz Week programs.  

“People thoroughly enjoyed the lectures,” Mann said. “We’re going to do it again.” 

Family Programs

Lakeside is a special place for families to add a learning component to their summer vacation. With art, science, music, history, geography and literature offerings, the programs allow Lakesiders of all ages to interact and learn about the world together, all while having fun during the summer.

Science Rocks!, led by Thomas DeHaas, was a big draw for kids. Over the course of eight classes, 510 took part in the program. 

“This was the second year for the Science Rocks! program, and it has been a hit,” Mann said. “The programs are geared for ages 6-12 but parents and grandparents were also attending.” 

The events that interested kids the most were the ones involving animals. Science Rocks! partnered with Erie Metro Parks naturalists to teach about the reptiles and amphibians of Ohio. 150 children and family members got a close-up view of snakes, turtles and salamanders – some even had a hands-on experience.  

The same happened at the Steele Memorial Bandstand when Columbus Zoo Animal Ambassadors showed off a turtle, an anteater, a sloth, an owl, among others, to 550 patrons, the largest crowd of the season at the venue. 

“Lakeside’s Sesquicentennial Celebration next year is going to be an exciting year,” Mann said. “We’re planning diverse programs that I think Lakesiders will enjoy.” 


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