“Why would you want to move to Cleveland?” is a question I’ve been asked in the last year more times than I can count since finding out I was transferring. I’ve been asked by friends, co-workers, neighbors and even strangers. To be honest, I would have asked myself the same questions 10 years ago.

I grew up in the North Hills outside of Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh is a city with rust-belt roots and often overcast weather, much like Cleveland. After high school, I first traveled to Ohio to attend Kent State University for college. I studied architecture, enjoyed being able to buy beer at corner gas stations and met my fiancee from Cleveland. After graduating in 2010, I took a job with a construction company. Through the next decade, I lived and worked in several Pennsylvania cities including Pittsburgh, Clarion, Philadelphia and Harrisburg. I seem to meet people from Pittsburgh everywhere I go, even in places as remote as Iceland. I’ve always been proud of the passion that people from Pittsburgh have towards their city.

Surprising to most, though, I’m not into sports. Wherever I go, I get the obligatory, “So you must be a Steelers fan?” Most times it accompanies a tone of indignation, but actually not so much in Cleveland. I also grew up thinking that the pierogi scene in Pittsburgh was unmatched. After my first full fish fry season in Parma, which boasts both a Ukrainian and a Polish Village, I now think differently.

I have met a lot of people from Cleveland, starting with my time at Kent State. Some of my best friends are from Cleveland. One recently moved to Parma, and my fiancee has lived in Parma her whole life. One thing that is apparent with nearly anyone I’ve met is their excitement when I say I’m from out of town. Everyone is eager to talk about their city and the things to do and see, but most of all the places to eat. I’ve learned that if there is ever a lull in a conversation to just say, “So I tried out this place _______ recently,” and I know I’ll get ten recommendations for similar places all over town.

While I’ll always be proud of my hometown of Pittsburgh, I have had a wonderful experience moving to Cleveland, and specifically Parma. I’m thankful to have been introduced to the Young Professionals of Parma who clearly have a great passion for their town. That passion is starting to resonate with me too. This is all to say that I’m very much looking forward to buying a home here and continuing to discover all our city has to offer.

By: Danny Taylor