Sep 22, 2023

Front Street Social replaces Berea’s Bar 107: Around The Town

From left, Front Street Social co-owner Brock Malinowski, Chef John Jaszczuk, Bar Manager J.C. Collins and co-owner Hec Hixson welcome patrons to their new establishment.

BEREA, Ohio — Alexander Graham Bell is credited with having coined the phrase “When one door closes, another door opens” and in a sense, that’s what has happened at 107 Front St.

The Front Street location was formerly known as Bar 107, an establishment owned since 2011 by Jessica Petrone and Tony Formica.

The pair sold the bar to Cleveland entrepreneur Brock Malinowski and his partner, Hec Hixson in August after deciding to close following the Coronavirus shutdown.

Malinowski and Hixson on Sept. 17, hosted a grand opening of Front Street Social, their new establishment, which Malinowski said “provided an opportunity to build on the groundwork that Jessica and Tony had laid with Bar 107.”

“I always had great experiences at Bar 107,” he said. “The space has a ton of character, the cocktails are the best in the area and I always loved the live music on their stage. It was my favorite place to hang out.”

Whenever I’d walk past Bar 107 late evenings, it always looked like a jumpin' place, full of patrons having fun and lots of live music spilling out onto the street.

A colorful neon “BAR 107” window sign lit the nighttime sidewalk, and the overall ambiance of the place added some much needed pizzazz to Berea’s town center. I have to admit, I was sorry to see Bar 107 go. Now I’m happy to welcome Front Street Social

You may wonder, through, why anyone would open a new bar or eatery when a pandemic still threatens to throw a damper on so many businesses.

“We are excited to take on the challenge of starting up during such an unprecedented time in this industry,” said Malinowski. “In my experience, the businesses that thrive make it work regardless of the circumstances they are thrown into. I am excited to show the community what we can do.”

Pretty good answer, I’d say. We need as much positive, can-do enthusiasm as we can get these days.

Front Street Social, Malinowski said, will offer refined and unique spins on classic American bar food, craft cocktails and a wide range of beer and wine offerings.

Business hours will be from 11 a.m. to midnight Tuesdays and Wednesdays and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. Closed Sundays and Mondays.

Gems 'n things: Fans of gems, jewelry, beads, fossils and minerals as well as one-of-a-kind hand-crafted works of art to wear or decorate your home or office, won’t want to miss the GemStreet USA Show & Sale, which will be Sept. 25-27 at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds in Berea.

The folks sponsoring the GemStreet event have booked one of the big fairgrounds buildings so they can produce their signature shopping experience with safe social distancing.

Marti Robers of Gem Miracle will be among the vendors at the show offering a stunning statement of necklaces and earrings hand-made from crystals and gemstones, as will Ken Poore of Quest Crystals, who specializes in fascinating geodes and minerals.

Poore will bring a variety of exquisite jade beaded jewelry and lava rock beans — two of the hottest trends in fall jewelry.

In addition to wearable art, GemStreet offers sculptures made from polished wood, as well as man-made sculptures that combine amethyst and selenite.

For those who enjoy creating their own jewelry, GemStreet will feature several vendors selling beads by the string, plus all the tools and educational materials needed.

GemStreet USA Show & Sale hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sep. 25 - 26 and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 27. Admission is $6 and free for children under 12. Discount coupons are available at

An IX surprise: I’d bet many us were stunned upon learning that the International Exhibition Center (IX Center) has fallen victim to the pandemic, crippling its ability to hold this year’s auto and home shows and other events, compelling its owners to end the center’s 35-year run at year’s end.

Word has it that the City of Cleveland is looking for possible new uses for the facility, which boasts 1-million square feet of exhibition space.

Calling Amazon: Mark Haas of Brook Park, on Facebook’s Brook Park Community page, thinks Amazon is likely to end up being the new tenant of what is now the IX Center

He points out that the IX “sits next to an airport, a highway and railroad tracks. It has two floors of storage, has its own hangar and Fedex, Post Office and UPS are across the street. What a great location for that business!”

If you think about it, that sounds plausible. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

Get a barrel: Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District is hosting Rain Barrel Pick-Up events from 4-5 p.m. Sept. 23 in Gates Mills; from 5-7 p.m. Sept. 23 in Garfield Heights, from 4-6 p.m. Sept. 30 in Valley View and from 4-6 p.m. Oct. 8 in Oakwood.

Registration is available online at Click on Events. Rain barrels are $60 (includes downspout diverter).

Rain barrels are used to collect and store rainwater that would otherwise be lost to runoff and likely diverted to a storm drain. Collected water may then be use to water lawns and gardens.

Art online: As you may know, Berea’s annual Arts Fest is an online event this year with the tag “30 days/30 ways,” the virtual festival showcases your favorite artists and performer, along with some Arts Fest surprises.

Online patrons will have the chance to win original artworks each week.

Festival coordinator Rich Cihlar said the Berea Arts Fest is working to include as many artistic media as possible.

Give blood: An American Red Cross Blood Drive will be from 1-6 p.m. Sept. 24 at the St. Adalbert Church Keller Center, 66 Adalbert St. in Berea.

Schedule an appointment today. Download the Blood Donor App at, or call 1-800-733-2767.

SCAN pantry hours: The SCAN Hunger Pantry, 398 W. Bagley Road, Suite 7, in Berea, has hours of operation from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the second Friday of the month and from 4 to 7 p.m. on the fourth Friday of the month.

Outreach Pantry hours: The Berea Community Outreach Food Pantry, 535 Wyleswood Drive (at front of Smith School), is open from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays. For more information, call 440-826-4891.

Middleburg Heights pantry: The Middleburg Heights Food Pantry at 7000 Paula Drive is open to serve clients from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 5 to 7 p.m. Thursdays.

Please email information (people photos, too. Include ID’s) on items you’d like to see included in “Around The Town” to [email protected].

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