Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Queenies

Queen City Survey’s Best of 2008

A look back at 2008 at QueenCitySurvey, the local blogoshere, and Cincinnati.

Queen City Survey’s Post of the Year
The Queen Crown Jewels – The Gywnne Building

This entry had nine comments and I think typifies what I wanted to do with the blog and in particular the ‘Crown Jewel’ series: highlight Cincinnati’s architecture and that which isn’t always well known.

Queen City Survey’s Post of the Year – Honorable Mention
Survey Says: The best (as judged by me) ‘corners’ downtown, excluding Fountain Square.
This entry also had nine comments and I think served as a nice overview of downtown. It also prompted a vote where I asked readers to pick their favorite corner downtown. Garfield Place & Elm Street won the fan voting over my selection of 4th & Walnut.

Queen City Survey’s Post of the Year – Another Honorable Mention
Rumor Central
This entry had ten comments but it was basically people fishing for what I knew. To refresh your memory, I heard or overheard three rumors about the Gateway Quarter and this is what I said about each one:
1. Wow, that would be fantastic.
2. We could use that.
3. That's interesting and would add a whole new element to the mix.
Well that was April, and we now know Number 1 was the news about the campaign to renovate the Emery Theatre. Number 2 and 3 I haven’t heard any more on so I’m just going to say them: No. 2 was supposed to be a sports bar in the first floor of Duveneck and No. 3 was a boutique hotel somewhere in Gateway. Have no idea of the merits or status of the rumors.

Queen City Survey’s Image of the Year
Seventh Street Reflections
I am not a photographer. Most of my photos are meant to reinforce the particular post or present a stand alone image that is just about living in the city or perhaps showcasing our architecture. But I like the photographs to add some pop to the posts and make it interesting. The image below I think is my favorite . . .

Queen City Survey’s Image of the Year – Honorable Mention
Colorful Queen

Queen City Survey’s Series of the Year
Historic Public Schools of Cincinnati
I am not sure about everyone else but I liked the seven part series on the historic Cincinnati Public Schools. It actually took me a while to research and then photograph all of them. I mean, I do not go to Mt. Washington very often. I’d like to now do the same type of post for all historic Catholic Churches in Cincinnati.

Queen City Survey’s Best New Feature
Cincinnati March(itecture) Madness

Well, I thought it was clever and fun. And it got people voting on their favorite buildings in an interactive way. And the contest and the blog in general got QCS a mention in CityBeat! Cincinnati March(itecture) Madness will be back in 2009.

Queen City Survey’s Best New Feature – Honorable Mention
Behind the Asphalt

A lot of people seem to like this series. So far we have profiled the men behind Eggleston Avenue, Hoffner Street and Markbreit Avenue. I have a few in mind for 2009.

Best Local Blog of 2008
Cincinnati Blog

There has been a lot of great information over at Cincinnati Blog in the past year, especially recently. Topics for instance have covered some post-election wrap-up, the Bearcats, the County’s financial crisis and situation, and some thoughts on regional leadership. It has really been top notch and I only wish my political and current event posts were as good. At Cincinnati Blog it isn’t about pretty pictures but there is a lot of damn fine information.

Best Local Blog of 2008 – Honorable Mentions
Building Cincinnati, UrbanCincy, Wine Me, Dine Me (in Cincinnati), and 5chw4r7z These get the nod because they are established blogs and basically they always have new content and I check in with them daily in most cases. The new dot com version of Wine Me, Dine me is also very attractively laid out I might add. Links in side bar.

Best New Local Blog of 2008

I feel like a spy at the County offices just reading it. Has such great insider information and insight it is a must for all local political junkies. And really should be a must read for everyone to just be better informed. I don’t care what your politics are, anyone who takes the time to deliver information to his constituency like David Pepper has, deserves much praise. His campaign will definitely be getting some cash from me in his next election.

Best New Local Blog of 2008 – Honorable Mention
The Catholic Telegraph Photography Project
This former alter boy and QueerCincinnati defined “geek” just loves it.

The “Most to be Missed” Local Blog of 2008
Eye Spy – Sara Pearce’s Enquirer Art Blog
It just sort of ended when, I assume, Sara Pearce took a buy-out at the Enquirer. It is a sad state when our only daily paper does not have an arts and architecture critic or anyone specifically writing on the visual arts. There are still articles on music and theatre. But they too will probably be gone in time . . . replaced by obnoxious commentors talking about how too much money is spent on Music Hall and how the Symphony should move to Mason.

The Best Blog Party of 2008
5chw4r7z’s Everyone’s Famous! Blogger Bash
I’m giving the Blogger Bash the nod only because there was entertainment from the Know Theatre! Honorable Mentions include UrbanCincy’s led tours of Over the Rhine and Stacked’s Cincinnati Blogger Convention. All were fun and in many cases informative! All are free to have more parties and invite me.

Local News Story of the Year
The Banks Groundbreaking & Council Approval of Streetcar Plan

April was huge for Cincinnati. At the beginning of the month, The Banks, one of the largest and most important projects in Cincinnati’s history, finally broke ground after languishing for years. Then by the end of the month, Council approved the Streetcar Plan to move forward. I think this is a critical tie for the Banks and the new Central Riverfront Park to the Central Business District and Over the Rhine. It allows all development in the center city to work together. People continue and will continue to take shots at it but it must be implemented.

Local Sports Story of the Year
UC football wins Big East and plays in the Orange Bowl
No question the UC Bearcat football team was the big sports news here locally. It didn’t end with a storybook happy ending but who would have ever thought UC would have been here this quickly.

Best Cincinnati Festival

I love Oktoberfest and had a great time this year. There is room for improvement as I stated in this post but I love all things Oktoberfest related. That also includes the Fountain Square Gemuetlichkeit Games the week before. The Pretzel Toss, Beer Stein Races, and especially the Running of the Wieners are a hoot and a not to miss. Next year, I swear I am going to buy and wear lederhosen.

Best Cincinnati Restaurant, Band, Concert, Theatre Experience, Bar, etc.
Sorry, but I have nothing . . .
I do not think I am qualified to give any of these awards this year. Looking back I am amazed at how little I did in those arenas and how little I actually ate out at new and popular restaurants. The result of being single and spending four nights a week at the gym I think. I tended to go to the one bar I always go to. And I find myself walking to the few restaurants downtown that I know I like. I did love going to May Festival this year to hear Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony but I didn’t do too much else in the same vein in which to compare it.

Here is to a great 2009!


Julie said...

Thank you so much for the honorable mention! It was a darn fun year in 2008 in Cincinnati, wasn't it? You're inspiring me to do my own list... hmmm...

Meridian13113 said...

Your cultural links omit the May Festival's website:


Rick Barr said...

Thanks for the honorable mention. QCS is one of my favorite local blogs and I agree -- your series on the historic Cincinnati Public Schools was great. I'm looking forward to your series on the Catholic churches. Keep up the good work!

Kevin LeMaster said...

Thanks for the mention!

I'd really like to see more "Behind the Asphalt". I'm sure the posts are pretty time-consuming with all of the research that has to be done, but I think they're fascinating.

CityKin said...

Looking forward to the Catholic Churches post. Keep up the good work!

gerard said...

I loved the CPS series as well. Looking forward to more "Behind the Asphalt" entries.

That's one thing about old cities - their street names are usually more interesting backgrounds. As opposed to suburban type names, which are all basically trees.