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Issue Date: July 2010 Issue

Fabulous Finales

Jennifer Bowen
Rocky River Park is your quintessential neighborhood hangout — locals walk here, most others don't know it exists. The lakefront spot is an amphitheater-like retreat with a no-swimming beach and a tiered layout that offers plenty of places to take in a sunset. Tom Fattlar, Rocky River recreation director, says the nearly-5-acre park has had various personalities over the years. It has been home to an ice skating pond and a bathhouse. Now it hosts Sunday concerts and draws playground-seeking kids. "It's well-loved by the people in the community; it's designed for the community," he says. In 2007, the park earned recognition from the state for a $100,000 upgrade that, among other things, created four stone retaining walls. From these spots you can gaze at an unobstructed horizon that stretches from Avon Point on the west to the beacon at the mouth of the Rocky River on the east. If you want more privacy, head to one of the benches perched on the grassy curve along Parkside Drive. Stick around after the amateur spectators have left to watch the sky glow with sheer strips of pink and purple — remnants of the disappearing day. 20250 Beachcliff Blvd., Rocky River

More Sunset Spots
- Linwood Park
This 126-year-old vacation community is located 40 miles west of downtown and has a wide beach along its northern boundary great for sunset watchers. Linwood Avenue and Linden Street, off state Route 6, Vermilion

- Mentor Headlands Beach State Park
The mile-long natural sand beach — the largest in Ohio — fills with families and sun worshippers. Go for a late-afternoon picnic, and stay to watch the sun's evening display. 9601 Headlands Road, Mentor

- Voinovich Bicentennial Park
If you prefer to appreciate nature while taking in a man-made skyline, head to this small waterfront park behind the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. 800 East Ninth St., Cleveland

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