Small business dreams with steelyard roots: Downtown Lorain restaurant and nightlife scene revives itself


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LORAIN, Ohio – This former steel town at the mouth of the Black River on Lake Erie would seem like an unlikely location for one of the hottest food-and-drink scenes in Ohio. But that’s just what has emerged in downtown Lorain over the past five years, with an explosion of independent bars and restaurants opening on the main street of the historic manufacturing town 30 miles west of Cleveland.

Full of entrepreneurial spirit, hardworking roots and a little quirky charm, the city of Lorain has birthed a whole new hospitality scene, rocking renovated design elements alongside elevated relatable menus. Once bustling during the industrial era, a less-than-a-mile stretch on Broadway Avenue now attracts dream-fueled local entrepreneurs. In short, Lorain is having a moment.