Lanterns and Music Welcomed Spring to the Banks of the Cuyahoga River on March 12

More than 150 attendees joined us to say a very chilly good-bye to winter and celebrate the coming increase in daylight on Saturday, March 12. Despite temperatures in the low 20s, attendees walked and danced 1.5 miles along the Towpath Trail carrying creative homemade lanterns during the first Towpath Trail Lantern Parade.

Revolution Brass Band for lead us off in style, and stopped along the way to allow members of the parade to enjoy the music is different locations on the trail.

Parade attendees carried lanterns of various shapes and sizes. We saw lanterns made from laundry detergent bottles, jars, cardboard boxes, plastic silverware, drink cups, and plastic bags.

Commissioned artists Darla Arnold and Samanatha Fryberger, Debbie Apple-Presser and Eddie “Trash Fish” Olschansky presented their creations at the event.

Darla Arnold and Samanatha Fryberger created a 3-foot tall bee hive full of buzz and insects, titled “Beelightful.” The lantern was hung from a branch and was made of upcycled sweet tea bottles, lightbulb packaging, candle lids, rope, newspaper, clothes baskets, frappuccino collarsand cardboard boxes.

Debbie Apple-Presser created a 2-foot long lightning bug, made of plastic milk jugs, large plastic mayo jars from Tommy’s restaurant, sheer curtains, tissue paper, paint, swizzle sticks, costume jewelry, yarn, wire, split reed, and glitter. The illuminated piece was titled “Magical Light/Magical Night.” Debbie also invited a team of people to join her with small handheld lightning bugs that swarmed around her.

Eddie Olschansky of Trash Fish, a river clean-up organization, created a larger-than-life fish and fishpole, made from recycled wire hangers from laundromats and dry cleaners, plastic bottles and other litter removed from the Cuyahoga River on Trash Fish litter cleanups. Eddied dyed the fish scales by mixing food-coloring and Mod Podge.

Thank you to everyone who joined us. We can’t wait to see what lanterns you bring next year!

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