Prosperity Social Club Hosts Nostalgia-Filled Launch of Laura DeMarco’s New Book, Lost Cleveland

Cleveland is an ever-changing city. Prosperity Social Club invites you to travel back in time and trace the Rust Belt city’s explosive rise, cataclysmic fall, and dramatic revival at a celebration for the release of the new book, Lost Cleveland (Pavilion Books). Meet author and Plain Dealer arts and entertainment reporter Laura DeMarco on Saturday, September 16, 1-4pm and discover iconic architecture, legendary events, and fascinating true tales behind a city that was one of the largest and most prosperous in America.

With 65 entries and more than 200 photos, the 144-page, 11-by-9.5-inch hardcover book chronicles beloved institutions and places that, although consigned to history, continue to shape the city’s identity. “As a lifelong, third-generation Clevelander, I grew up listening to my grandmother and parents reminiscing about the Cleveland they knew—shopping on Euclid Avenue and seeing shows at the Hippodrome, about Dean Martin and mobsters hanging out at the Hollenden Hotel, about going to Euclid Beach Park and League Park and the old Stadium,” says DeMarco, talking about the genesis of the book. “I wanted to learn more about the storied, glamorous and gritty history of my city. Turns out, I learned more than I could have ever hoped and now I am happy to be a storyteller helping to keep that history alive.”

Opened in 1938 by Polish-born Stanley Dembowski (as Dempsey’s Oasis), Prosperity Social Club is steeped in its own Forest City history. With Cleveland breweriana décor and Eastern European-inspired comfort food, the pub clearly embraces Tremont’s immigrant and industrial history. “When I heard about Lost Cleveland, I immediately asked Laura if she would consider a party at Prosperity Social Club,” says owner Bonnie Flinner. “Laura and I agreed that it would be fun to trigger Clevelanders’ sensory memories with legacy foods like mimosas made with orange sherbet, a sweet treat that debuted at the Great Lakes Exposition, or Humphrey Popcorn balls, a Euclid Beach Park staple.” Prosperity’s Lost Cleveland launch specials also include Alpine Village bratwurst on toasted bun with “Cleveland Kraut” served with fresh, house-made chips and homemade Lawson’s-style French onion dip; an Ethnic Platter with a sampling of cabbage and noodles with kielbaski, a potato cake, a potato pierogi, and a Hungarian stuffed cabbage roll; and kielbaski with cabbage and noodles. Accordionist Stan Mejac is playing classic polka favorites on his squeezebox from 1-4pm.

The Lost Cleveland book event is the same day as the Tremont Arts & Cultural Festival, something that Flinner sees as a great match. “It’s the perfect opportunity to explore the neighborhood and our history.”

“From the grand theater where horses dove off balconies to the arena that was the site of the first rock concert and riot, I am drawn to Cleveland’s colorful stories and I think others will be too,” says DeMarco. “I hope people will come out and share their photos and memories with me.”

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About Lost Cleveland
Organized chronologically, Laura DeMarco’s Lost Cleveland features beloved Cleveland institutions that disappeared with the wrecking ball. Whether it’s Leo’s Casino, The Hippodrome, Hough Bakery, Cleveland Municipal Stadium or Memphis Drive-In, these testaments to a long-gone era live on in Clevelanders’ memories and in the pages of Lost Cleveland, which revisits them with rare vintage photos and colorful stories.

About Prosperity Social Club
Residing in an original 1938 barroom, Prosperity Social Club is open to the public, being a social club only in a figure of speech, behavior and attitude; a tip of the hat to a past era. Prosperity Social Club offers a full-service bar, great microbrews, a variety of affordable wines, performances by an array of talented musicians, a friendly staff and a smart, eclectic clientele. The kitchen stays open for late night dining with a sophisticated, tavern-style menu (that even accommodates vegetarians). It’s a true Cleveland experience.