This weekend is poised to be a busy one with a variety of unique events taking place throughout the basin. We do not often plug events nowadays, but this is a weekend where you do not want to be absent from Downtown and Over-the-Rhine.

GoOTR 5k + Summer Celebration
The next big event will take place Saturday morning in historic Over-the-Rhine. The sixth annual GoOTR 5k will begin at 10am, and will raise money for the Over-the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce. While online registration has closed, those interested can still register in person today from 5pm to 7pm, 11am to 7:30pm on Friday, or immediately prior to the race on Saturday starting at 8:30am.

Festival-goers enjoy the 2009 OTR Summer Celebration. Photograph by Randy A. Simes for UrbanCincy.

The race is the first leg of the Cincinnati Triple Crown. The winner will receive a custom trophy from Rookwood Pottery and the rights to continue on their hunt for Triple Crown glory at the Hyde Park Blast and Downtown Dash.

The accompanying OTR Summer Celebration will take place immediately following the completion of the race along Vine Street between 12th and 13th streets. Officially starting at 4pm, the street fair will include local merchants and live music from Wussy, Josh Eagle and the Harvest City, Shiny and the Spoon, The Cincy Brass, Young Professionals Choral Collective, Pones Inc., and a special performance from the Blue Wisp’s Young Lions and their legendary jazz drummer Philip Paul.

Smale Riverfront Park Grand Opening
On Friday evening, city officials and community leaders will celebrate the grand opening of the first phase of the Smale Riverfront Park. The new park is the latest piece of Cincinnati’s central riverfront transformation. The completed first phase includes the area along Mehring Way between the Roebling Suspension Bridge and Great American Ball Park, and includes the Moerlein Lager House, an event lawn, multiple water features, monuments and the new Bike Mobility Visitors Center.

The bike center is seen another step forward for the city’s bike program after recently receiving an award from the League of American Bicyclists. The facility features bike rentals, shower stations, lockers and indoor bicycle parking, along with a knowledgeable staff at the center to perform bicycle repairs.

The grand opening celebration will begin at 6:15pm at the Schmidlapp Event Lawn, and will feature live music, free UDF ice cream, and a fireworks show at dusk. Those looking for a sneak peek of the new park can view the most recent construction progress video on YouTube.