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Hello, Cleveland! Here's a two-minute blitz video for novices

Don't underestimate Cleveland, which has reinvented itself--and then some.

If you’re a baseball fan, you may have decided Wednesday to forget about Cleveland for another year. But if you’re a traveler or an admirer of American rust-belt underdogs, not so fast.

I went to Cleveland in September for a story (set to run at the end of next month) on Severance Hall, the historic home of the Cleveland Orchestra. Along the way, I came across some great distractions, and this video, a two-minute sprint for Cleveland rookies, is about them.

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For instance:

►The fast-changing riverfront. The Cuyahoga River, infamously polluted and repeatedly aflame in the 1950s and 1960s, hasn’t burned since 1969. Nowadays you’re more likely to see people rowing on it, or kayaking or doing a dinner cruise.

►The grand old bank buildings. Many now house hotels and restaurants and even one snazzy grocery store. (That’s Heinen’s at Euclid Avenue and East 9th Street. Get a snack there, or taste wine upstairs.)

►The polka music. (Thank you, Stan Mejac at Prosperity Social Club.)

►The rock music. (Thank you, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.)

►The freshly foraged mushrooms. (Thank you, Larder Delicatessen and Bakery.)

►The longhorn steer head at Foster’s Meats in the West Side Market (closed Tuesdays and Thursdays).

And so on. The city won’t look exactly like this in winter (and sprinting is not recommended when there’s snow on the ground).

But the city has more happening than you might imagine.

Some other locations in the video :

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Info: Destination Cleveland Visitors Center, 334 Euclid Ave., Cleveland; (800) 321-1001.

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