FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
An Unprecedented Sports, Entertainment and Dining Destination for the LGBTQ+ Community and its Allies
Cleveland (September 8, 2022) — Studio West 117, a first-of-its-kind sustainable ecosystem created for and by the LGBTQ+ community, will host a grand opening celebration October 21-23, 2022, for the Fieldhouse, the first pillar in what will be a 300,000+ square foot mixed-use, LGBTQ+-affirming neighborhood in Lakewood and Cleveland, Ohio.
The Fieldhouse facility includes a 5,000 square foot gymnasium and three restaurants — Muze, Trellis, and Eat Me Pizza. This initial phase also houses a rooftop patio, an outdoor courtyard, a demonstration kitchen, and event spaces. Ongoing programming will include LGBTQ+ youth sports leagues, Stonewall Sports leagues, senior fitness programming, group fitness classes, drag shows, brunches, salsa nights, pageants and balls, Pride festivals, art and mural exhibits and much more.
Project partners include The LGBT Center of Greater Cleveland, The Cleveland Cavaliers, Plexus LGBT and Allied Chamber of Commerce, Special Olympics Ohio, Stonewall Sports Cleveland, and the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
A list of grand opening events can be found on the Studio West 117 website. Highlights include special guest performances by stars from RuPaul’s Drag Race, Dragula, and America’s Got Talent, classes in the demonstration kitchen, full menus at the restaurants and sports activations in the Fieldhouse gym.
Open to all, Studio West 117 is home to an array of entertainment venues and identity affirming retail businesses in addition to housing. In the coming months and years, Studio West 117 will open additional entertainment, retail, medical and residential properties specifically designed to support the LGBTQ+ community and LGBTQ+ business owners and non-profit partner agencies.
“Studio West 117 was created to honor and share the vibrant cultures that comprise the LGBTQ+ community and to serve and support its members. We’re excited to welcome everyone to the Fieldhouse for some fun and to learn about everything we have to offer.” — Betsy Figgie, Co-Founder, Studio West 117
“Everyone should have a place to go where they can feel comfortable in their own skin and can grow and explore. We hope the LGBTQ+ community in the Cleveland area and beyond will find that and more at Studio West 117.” — Daniel Budish, Co-Founder, Studio West 117
“Studio West 117 will provide Cleveland with much needed, safe and affirming spaces where LGBTQ+ people can thrive. This project brings visibility to the powerful things that can happen when people think big.” — Phyllis Harris, Executive Director, The LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland
“Time and again we hear from visitors and event attendees that Cleveland is a very welcoming community. The addition of Studio West 117 to both our visitor and event portfolios strengthens the foundation for that impression and enhances Cleveland’s reputation as a safe and accepting destination for LGBTQ+ community members and allies. With so many first-of-its-kind features, we’re excited about the development’s potential to bring national attention to Cleveland.” — David Gilbert, President & CEO of Destination Cleveland and Greater Cleveland Sports Commission.
For media enquiries contact us at StudioWest117.com/Contact.
Press packet StudioWest117.com/Media. (@studiowest117)
Daniel Budish, Project Developer
Daniel is the President of Gaslamp Capital, a historic tax credit consulting firm founded in 2015. He holds degrees in urban planning and city design from Cornell University and The London School of Economics. Daniel has dedicated his career to renovating and preserving historic buildings across the country through the implementation of innovative financing structures. As a native Clevelander, he has long thought about how he could best utilize his skills in tax credit finance to benefit the LGBTQ+ community. This project is a dream come true for Daniel due to its combination of historic preservation, its intense focus on philanthropy, community development, and of course — all the drag.
Betsy Figgie, Project Developer
Betsy is President of Your CFO Resource, a structured financing consulting firm founded in 2005, specializing in tax-credit enhanced projects typically utilizing New Markets Tax Credits. Having closed upwards of $1 billion in transactions over her career, Betsy is thrilled to be co-developing Studio West 117. Betsy believes that one of the most critical elements of the project is ensuring that LGBTQ+ youth have a safe place to play, explore, connect and grow. Betsy has degrees from Ohio Wesleyan University, The Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, L’ecole Commerciale de la Chambre de Commerce et d’Industrie de Paris, and the International Culinary Arts and Sciences Institute.