Today is a good day to visit Coventry Village.
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Meet Tommy Fello – Tommy’s Restaurant Meet Tom & Andy Gathy – Heights Hardware Meet The Attenson’s – Attenson’s Coventry Antiques & Books Jessica Morris – Houde School of Acting

Meet Tommy Fello – Tommy’s Restaurant

December 19th, 2014 by

Tommy’s Restaurant    

  1824 Coventry Road
  Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Owner: Tom Fello

Established in Coventry Village: January 1972
# of Staff: 56


Q. Tell us about Tommy’s Restaurant. What do you offer? What makes your location unique? 

A.  Whether you’re a vegetarian, a meat-eater, vegan, or just plain hungry —Tommy’s will take care of you! We cater to all dietary restrictions and strive to provide all our customers with delicious food and friendly service in a family environment.

Q. What did you do before Tommy’s? Tell us the Tommy’s story.  

A. I was a soda jerk! When I was 14, my first job was at the former Ace Drug Store, which would later become Fine Arts Confectionery (located in the space now occupied by The Inn on Coventry.) I was 19 years old when the business went up for sale. I purchased the business on Jan. 14, 1972, which included the former owner’s recipes for falafel, baba ghanoush and hummus. With these recipes and a few from my mother, I expand the restaurant’s menu.

In April 1978, Tommy’s moved to 1820 Coventry Road and expanded to accommodate 77 diners. This remained our home until November 1988 when a fire destroyed half a block of Coventry, including Tommy’s dining room. After the fire, we continued to use the kitchen but moved the dining room to 1824 Coventry Road. The current site of Tommy’s celebrated its grand opening in May of 1993.

Q. Why Coventry Village?

A. I love the people and I love Coventry. I’ve worked on Coventry since I was 14 years old. It was a natural fit. Coventry Village is a special place. Most of the businesses are locally owned and have been in business for many years. The neighborhood has always supported the arts and never settles for the ordinary.

Q. Give us a few suggestions for gifts holiday shoppers can find at Tommy’s.

A. Tommy’s gift cards or t-shirt make a great gift. Now through the end of December, we’re offering students 50% off t-shirts when you show us your student ID card.

Also, if you’d like to treat the family while supporting the arts, make plans to attend our 15th Annual New Year’s Day Pancake Breakfast. All proceeds benefit Heights Arts. In addition to the all-you-can-eat breakfast, you’ll have the opportunity to win a variety of gift certificates from local Heights Arts supporters, purchase a commemorative t-shirt or hand-silkscreened poster by Zygote Press.

While waiting for a table, browse next door at Mac’s Backs. Half of all purchases will also be donated to Heights Arts. Flower Clown will be here to entertain children of all ages with his unique balloon creations. The event is also sponsored by our good friends at Big Fun and Mac’s Backs-Books on Coventry.

Q. Tell us something most people don’t know about Tommy’s.

A. We’ve basically had the same menu since 1972. At the beginning of Tommy’s, we had only 7 seats. It was pretty much a one man show. I took the orders, made the food, washed the dishes and was also the cashier.

When the same people would make up sandwiches and order the same things every time, it was easier to just write their names or initials down. That is how our menu was created. Each item is named after its creator. These lovely people represent the history of Coventry and now make their homes all over the world.

Q. What did you want to be when you were growing up?

A. An oceanographer.

Q. What’s your guilty pleasure?

A. Chocolate!

Q. Share with us a Fello family holiday tradition.

A. Every year we buy and plant a live Christmas tree.

 


Thanks to Tommy for taking the time to chat with us. Treat your loved ones to a meal or one of Tommy’s world famous milkshakes! Mark your calendar for Tommy’s 15th Annual Pancake breakfast to benefit Heights Arts.

Check back here Monday or become a fan of our Facebook page.

Every weekday this holiday season, we’re introducing you to the independent business owners that help make Coventry Village a great place to live, work, shop, dine and play.

Happy Holidays from your friends in Coventry Village.

shop local croped imahe

Photos by Suzuran Photography. Copyright Coventry Village Special Improvement District & Suzuran Photography. 

Meet Tom & Andy Gathy – Heights Hardware

December 18th, 2014 by

Heights Hardware    

  1792 Coventry Road
  Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Owners: Tom Gathy & Andy Gathy

Established in Coventry Village: 1922 (Established: 1911)
# of Staff: 5

 Tom Gathy took ownership of Heights Hardware in 1979

 


 

Q. Tell us about Heights Hardware. What do you offer? What makes your store unique? 

Andy: We are an old fashioned full assortment hardware store with all of the products, services, and knowledge to help complete any project. We are affiliated with Ace Hardware and we are Cleveland’s oldest Benjamin Moore paint dealer. Our most popular services are key copying, screen & window repair and lamp repair. We know our neighborhood and our neighbors and our inventory proves it.

Q. Share your story of entrepreneurship!  

Andy: My father, Tom Gathy was a customer before he purchased Heights Hardware from a family member. It just seemed to make sense to purchase the store since he was in the trades. The store has been in our distant family since the 1940′s. We are the 4th owners.

I worked at the store during college and started working full-time after. Before I knew it, I was in charge of running the store. It just kind of happened. I feel like I’m the luckiest guy in the world. Many people tell me how cool it would be to own a small hardware store and I agree. It is fun!

Q. Which member of your staff has been with you the longest? What do they do? What are their special skills that help your business?

Andy: Brian DeWitt was working at the store when my father purchased it in 1979. He is everything; as a former electrician and plumber he is very knowledgeable about the area’s homes and buildings. He is also kind of a local historian and an all-around great person.

Q. Give us a few suggestions for unique gifts holiday shoppers can find at Heights Hardware.

Andy: We always try to get unique stocking stuffer type gifts/gadgets during the holidays. This year we have an assortment of different LED flashlights and key-ring pocket tools.

Q. Tell us something most people don’t know about Heights Hardware.

Andy: We are not your typical small hardware store. I try very hard to keep our store very competitive with the big stores. Many items in my store are priced below Ace’s suggested retail. With today’s technology it is easy for me to make sure I am priced right.

Q. When you’re not running the store, how do you spend your free time?

Andy: We have great employees, so when I’m off, I don’t think about work. I love doing anything outside; including yard work, long walks in the park with my family, playing with my two daughters or throwing the ball for Bella (my dog).

 


Thanks to Tom and Andy for taking the time to chat with us. Stop by Heights Hardware for great holiday gifts or help with your next project.

Check back here tomorrow or become a fan of our Facebook page.

Every weekday this holiday season, we’re introducing you to the independent business owners that help make Coventry Village a great place to live, work, shop, dine and play.

Happy Holidays from your friends in Coventry Village.

shop local croped imahe

Photos by Suzuran Photography. Copyright Coventry Village Special Improvement District & Suzuran Photography. 

Meet The Attenson’s – Attenson’s Coventry Antiques & Books

December 17th, 2014 by

Attenson’s Coventry Antuques & Books   

  1771 Coventry Road
  Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118

216,321.2515 | Website

Owners: 
Mitchell Attenson, Stuart Attenson, Christina Attenson Molaskey

Established in Coventry Village: 1988
# of Staff: 4

 Pictured:
Christina Attenson Molaskey, Stuart Attenson, Rebecca Attenson

 


 

Q. Tell us about Attenson’s Antiques & Books. What do you offer? What makes your store unique? 

A. Established in 1965, we are a family-run business. Stuart, Mitchell, Christina or Rebecca Attenson will be happy to see you when you visit our store! We offer a wide variety of vintage, antique & collectible items ranging from books, pottery, porcelain, art-work, furniture, jewelry, vintage clothing and more. Each family member brings their own area of interest to the business, making for one of Cleveland’s most diverse selections.

We are the ultimate recycling store allowing people to enjoy previously owned, beautiful treasures over & over again.

Q. Why Coventry Village? 

A. We were fortunate enough to have found an available space on this beautiful, up-beat, and busy street. The eclectic atmosphere and heavy foot traffic was a definite draw.

Q. Tell us about the estate sale portion of your business!

A. In addition to the shop we also offer Mitchell Attenson Household Liquidations. Mitchell has a degree in Art History from The Ohio State University and has been buying & selling every day for the past 30 years!

We’ve been conducting estate sales since 1975 and have a large following of happy and loyal customers. You can visit the website: EstateSales.net to find our estate sales. Our listings are under “Mitchell Attenson.” You’ll find a full description & photos of our current sales. The sales are also advertised in the Sun Newspaper, The Chagrin, Solon & Geauga Times, Cleveland.com, Craigslist and on our website. If you’re moving or would like to discuss your estate sale, feel free to give Mitchell a call at 216.402.8367.

Q. Give us a few suggestions for unique gifts holiday shoppers can find at Attenson’s Antiques and Books.

A. We have a huge selection of silver, fine & costume jewelry. We offer unique, one-of a kind items that you will not find in any other store because we buy privately from individuals. Because we do not order our merchandise, it is truly one of a kind. You can come and browse through our two storefronts & 4 show rooms, approximately 2400 square feet, for hours. Perhaps you will find a rare out of print book, an unusual sculpture, a lovely work of art or piece of jewelry.

Q. What’s the best part of working with family?

Christina: We know each others personalities well. If we have a disagreement, it doesn’t last long. We’re all very forgiving. Because we’re family, we know each others strengths and how each of us compliments the business.

Q. Share with our readers an Attenson family holiday tradition.

Christina: Every year on Christmas day, we get together at Dad’s house for our traditional family rib roast dinner. Also, I make my Mom’s Chicken Divan recipe for Christmas Eve dinner. It’s something she always made for the family and I like carrying on that tradition.

Q. Are you running any special holiday promotions?

A. Everything in the store is 20% off the regular price. We also have some permanent markdowns that are up to 50% off”

 


Thanks to the Attenson family for taking the time to share with us. Attenson’s is also a participating in the Coventry Village Holiday Window Contest that ends next week. Take a minute to check out the windows and vote for your favorite!

Check back here tomorrow or become a fan of our Facebook page.

Every weekday this holiday season, we’re introducing you to the independent business owners that help make Coventry Village a great place to live, work, shop, dine and play.

Happy Holidays from your friends in Coventry Village.

shop local croped imahe

Photos by Suzuran Photography. Copyright Coventry Village Special Improvement District & Suzuran Photography. 

Jessica Morris – Houde School of Acting

December 16th, 2014 by

Houde School of Acting   

  1777 Coventry Road
  Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118

330.348.1106 | Website

Owner: Jessica Morris
Established in Coventry Village: 2004
# of Staff: 4

 


 

Q. Tell us about  The Houde School of Acting. What do you offer? 

A. Houde provides acting classes for children and adults 6 days a week. Our focus is on the Meisner technique, which many well known Hollywood actors study. We also offer improv, on camera, and scene study classes.

Q. Tell us about your work prior to opening Houde?  

A. I taught acting in Los Angeles at Playhouse West alongside actors Jeff Goldblum, James Franco, and Scott Caan. I’ve also appeared on the Becker television show and was in a production of the Glass Menagerie with James Franco.

Q. Why did you choose Coventry Village for the school? 

A. I first came to Coventry Road as a teen. A friend and I drove out to visit the famous Big Fun. When I stepped out of the car onto Coventry for the first time, I knew this is where I would open my business one day. I love the energy on the street.

Q. Tell us about your students. What type of acting jobs have they secured after taking classes?

A. It’s always wonderful to see Houde School students working in the field. I’m so proud of all of them. I have students who have appeared in national television commercials for Goodyear, lots of Houde School of Acting students were in the Cleveland Playhouse Square production of “A Christmas Story” and one of our talented students was in the movie “Wont Back Down” starring Maggie Gyllenhaal.

Q. When you’re not teaching, how are you spending your free time?

A. Spending time with my family. I just had a beautiful baby girl 5 months ago. So, whenever I am not at the school I am spending every moment with my daughter, Essic and my husband.

Q. Share with our readers a family holiday shopping tradition.

A. My husband and I love going Black Friday shopping. Not to shop but to watch all of the “mad Black Friday shoppers.”

Q. Where do you shop local?

A. Blush Boutique (just a few doors down from the school) is where I buy most of my clothes. I also love to shop at Avalon Exchange.”

Q. Are you running any special holiday promotions?

A. We do offer gift certificates for classes. During the month of December, we’re offering 30% off classes for first time students.”

 


Thanks to Jessica for taking the time to share with us. Houde School is also a participating in the Coventry Village Holiday Window Contest that ends next week. Take a minute to check out the windows and vote for your favorite!

Check back here tomorrow or become a fan of our Facebook page.

Every weekday this holiday season, we’re introducing you to the independent business owners that help make Coventry Village a great place to live, work, shop, dine and play.

Happy Holidays from your friends in Coventry Village.

shop local croped imahe

Photos by Suzuran Photography. Copyright Coventry Village Special Improvement District & Suzuran Photography.