The North Hill CDC Newsletter – September 2023

Inside North Hill’s Memorable Books, Bites & Beats Event

We can still hear the vinyl records playing and smell the delicious food from some of the best local food trucks in town. It was a day like no other as we welcomed over 600 attendees to our Books, Bites & Beats event. At the heartbeat of this event was our collaboration with the North Hill Branch Library, a partnership which allowed us to showcase nine of Northeast Ohio’s top private booksellers. This event took place right in the heart of our beloved North Hill community, elevating our neighborhood to new heights. 

Among our 600 attendees we were honored to welcome Akron’s very own Rachel E. Cargle, a brilliant author and entrepreneur.

Our time together was more than just another community gathering, but an intentional endeavor to utilize public spaces to showcase local entrepreneurs. This event served as a testament of our commitment to cultivate a thriving creative economy and expand the overall economic development of our North Hill community. 

As we reflect on the impact of this extraordinary day, we cannot help but express our heartfelt gratitude for our community making this event such a success. We are sincerely thankful for individuals like you who continue to stand alongside us, nurturing our neighborhood’s ingenuity and contributing to the cultivation of a robust creative economy. 

Although the summer is coming to a close, we’re just getting started! Stay tuned for more exciting events that will continue to unite our North Hill community.

Celebrating Unity and Hope: Akron’s International Day of Peace

The International Day of Peace, observed worldwide on September 21st, is a momentous occasion that transcends borders, cultures, and backgrounds. It’s a day of unity, hope, and celebration. A reminder that despite our differences, we share a common humanity and a shared goal of fostering peace. 

This year, we will proudly host our 3rd Annual International Day of Peace Celebration on September 23, 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM, to strengthen the ideals of peace through the individual and collective actions in our community! This year’s theme – Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #Global Goals – is a call to action that recognizes the importance of local contributions towards the global goal of establishing a peaceful and inclusive society.

In addition to providing great local food, drinks, music, and tours of NHCDC’s properties, this open community event will honor several North Hill community members with the NHCDC’s True North Awards. These awards are presented to individuals, businesses, and non-profit organizations whose commitment to the ideals of peace, social justice, community building, cohesion, and economic development have had a positive and consistent impact on North Hill. Recipients are those who lead by example, putting values into action, with integrity and an abiding commitment to peace and community.


This year, the City of Akron has the honor of hosting Little Amal, a 12-foot puppet of a 10 year old Syrian refugee child, that has become a global symbol of human rights! Little Amal has walked over 9,000km and 14 different countries to draw attention to the plight of children fleeing war, violence, and persecution. Her journey across the United States will take her through 35 towns and cities–from the east all the way to the west coast – as she carries a message of hope, compassion, and human rights to over 100 events that have welcomed her. In collaboration with the City of Akron, “The Walk” will commence at Water’s Park at the edge of North Hill into the heart of our community, People’s Park!

In preparation for this event, we ask that you please consider supporting this important community building event with a tax-deductible sponsorship. Contributions will fuel ongoing community activities, events, and programming in pursuit of our mission to unite people, places and programs, which will stimulate a robust and creative economy in North Hill. 

As the International Day of Peace draws near, we look forward to our community uniting together to celebrate a city defined by peace and understanding. We know through days like this our community will continue to move forward more united than ever, setting the stage for generations to come.

We look forward to celebrating peace and unity with you on  September 23!

Weaving Heritage and Art into the North Hill Community

Nestled in the heart of North Hill lies Howard Street Heritage Courtyard, an initiative focused on celebrating the diverse heritage of North Hill and African Americans on Howard Street through art. 

Howard Street Construction Unveiled

After much anticipation, we are excited to announce the Howard Street construction has begun. As the first bricks are being laid and structures are pieced together, we are thankful to witness this dream come to life. While we won’t unveil the details just yet, imagine a space that resonates with the essence of North Hill – a blend of tradition and innovation, celebrating the power of community collaboration. 

This groundbreaking initiative is more than what’s being built, but about creating a space that ignites imagination and fosters a sense of belonging. 

Your Voice. Your Influence

Are you passionate about the North Hill community? Would you like to play a direct role in the development of the Howard Street project? If so, we invite you to become a NHCDC committee member.

We understand the importance of public spaces reflecting the creativity of its residents and the impact of public art. We are looking for community members who will join us in creating new experiences, supporting local artists and working collaboratively to build active public spaces. As a committee member you will play a pivotal role in designing the Howard Street Heritage Courtyard opening day ceremony and other art and culture events. 

If you’re ready to let your voice be heard, click HERE to take your first step.  

Creating a Better North Hill Together 

No project of this magnitude is possible without strong partnerships. We’re excited to collaborate with several phenomenal organizations that are committed to seeing the North Hill community succeed. Some of our partners include: 

  • Ohio Arts Council 
  • The City of Akron
  • GAR Foundation
  • Puzzle Creative Solutions 
  • Great Streets
  • Akron Cleveland Association of Realtors 

Each partner brings a unique piece to the puzzle – from artistic expertise to logistical support and financial backing. We are beyond grateful for every partner who has chosen to support us on this journey. 

Moving Forward Together 

As construction continues and creativity comes to life, we find ourselves in an extraordinary moment. We’re immensely grateful for the support and generosity of people like you that has brought us this far. With the community’s involvement and our incredible partners, we’re not just revitalizing a space, but a story, a culture and a community. 

As we move forward and the chapters of the Howard Street story unfolds, we are eager to see heritage and creativity intertwined, where stories are told through art, and North Hill stands stronger, more vibrant than ever.

Proyecto Raices Presents the 3rd Annual Akron Latin Festival

This year we’re bringing an unforgettable celebration of Prosperity, Power and Progress, to the heart of Akron because every North Hill resident deserves to feel welcome in every part of the city. Join us for the 3rd Annual Akron Latin Festival on Saturday, September 16 from 3pm-9pm at the Cascade Plaza in Akron. This will be a beautiful night for the entire community to:

  • Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month in unity
  • Indulge in mouthwatering Latin cuisine
  • Dance to the best Latin music
  • Immerse yourself in captivating Latin art
  • And more!

Bring your family, invite your friends and join us for a day of exciting festivities that will honor diversity, promote unity, and create lasting memories!

Exchange House and IIA Partnership: Welcoming Refugees with Open Arms

In January of this year, the International Institute of Akron and North Hill CDC partnered together to use the CDC’s Exchange House in North Hill as a transitional housing space for newly arrived refugees in Akron. The partnership has been an outstanding opportunity for IIA to keep its connections to North Hill, while moving its main office downtown. 

For refugees and their families waiting for permanent housing upon arrival, the Exchange House offers a comfortable and affordable space right in the heart of the North Hill community. The house is far more preferable to a hotel, as it includes laundry space and a kitchen, so IIA clients can clean their own clothes and cook their own food. Additionally, the space is right behind People’s Park, allowing families to enjoy the neighborhood and its community members to the fullest and attend events in the park hosted by the North Hill CDC, such as concerts, food truck days, and more.  

The goal of the Exchange House is to have a space to welcome new refugee families to the neighborhood and to make their transition into the community as easy and comfortable as possible. IIA case managers go to the house regularly to meet with clients, teach them about the community, and help with their transition. 

Since IIA and North Hill CDC began their partnership, approximately 15 families have lived in the Exchange House as a transitional housing space. IIA is incredibly grateful for amazing partners in the community, like North Hill CDC, to help carry out the mission of making Akron a welcoming and thriving place for all refugees and immigrants. 

Thank you for your continued support, which allows us to open the doors of the Exchange House to those who need it most.

You play a major part in helping us build and revitalize our North Hill community! Donate today to help us continue this crucial and important work!