Axios Cleveland

Newsletter branding image

🎸 On this date in 2008, Akron's The Black Keys played a legendary "secret show" at Beachland Ballroom.

🌦️ Today's weather: Mostly sunny, showers late with a high of 79.

🎧 Sounds like: "I'm Shipping Up to Boston" by Dropkick Murphys

πŸš€ Become a member today and help fuel our mission of getting readers smarter faster on the news that matters here.

Today's newsletter is 893 words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: πŸ€ Cavs vs. Celtics

On to the second round. Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images

Your Cleveland Cavaliers are advancing to the second round of the NBA playoffs for the first time since the LeBron era.

Why it matters: The up-and-down first-round series against the Orlando Magic, which concluded Sunday after a grueling seven games, was as psychological as it was physical.

  • Donovan Mitchell proved once again that he is one of basketball's most electric superstars. His 89 points over the final two games got the Cavs over the hump.

State of play: For their troubles, the Cavs now get to play a top-seeded Boston Celtics team in Round 2, a series that just about everyone β€” including the oddsmakers β€” expects Cleveland to lose swiftly.

  • Boston is well rested after defeating the Miami Heat 4-1 in the first round.

The intrigue: Just like the regular season, the Cavs are dealing with nagging injuries.

  • Both Dean Wade, a bona fide Celtics killer who missed the entirety of Round 1, and Jarrett Allen, who missed the final three games, are questionable for tonight.

Yes, but: The Celtics will be without their starting center, Kristaps Porziņģis, as he recovers from a calf strain.

Stat du jour: Evan Mobley recorded 21 blocks in Round 1, more than any other team in the playoffs thus far. He could give the Boston stars headaches in the interior.

🧑 Sam's pick: My head says Boston in five, but my heart says Cavs in seven.

  • The low expectations may be to Cleveland's advantage. They're playing with house money now.

Tune in: All games will be nationally televised on major networks.

  • The first four have been scheduled β€” tonight in Boston at 7pm (TNT); Thursday in Boston at 7pm (ESPN); Saturday in Cleveland at 8:30pm (ABC); Monday in Cleveland at 7pm (TNT).
  • If the series extends, Boston would host Games 5 and 7, and Cleveland would host Game 6.

2. πŸ’ Mother's Day fun

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Looking for fun things to do with mom this weekend?

  • Here are five Mother's Day events to book now:

πŸ™ Mother's Day Celebration

Details: The gospel concert takes place at 7pm on Saturday at State Theatre and features performances by Yolanda Adams, Jekalyn Carr and more.

If you go: Tickets start at $72.50

🐟 Cleveland Aquarium

Details: The aquarium will have extended hours on Saturday and Sunday, from 9am-6pm with parent-themed animal trivia.

If you go: Tickets are $19.95 for ages 13 and up; $13.95 for ages 2-12.

  • Mothers save $5.

🀣 Momprov

Details: Imposters Theater will showcase six of its improv performers along with their mother or child at 6pm on Saturday.

If you go: Tickets are $10 in advance; $15 the day of.

πŸ«– Tower City

Details: Tower City's Skylight Park will transform into a mother/kids wonderland from noon to 4pm on Saturday with a bouquet bar, tea party, meet a Disney princess and more.

If you go: Admission is free.

⚾ Baseball Heritage Museum

Details: The museum's annual "Have a Catch with Mom" event takes place from 10am-2pm Sunday and features complimentary coffee, juice and doughnuts with paid admission.

If you go: Admission is $10.

3. Terminal: A trail of local news

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🍺 The first-ever Ohio Distillery Trail will launch May 22, highlighting 24 distilleries statewide. (Spectrum News)

πŸ›’ Giant Eagle will debut its sturdier, reusable grocery bags at stores on Monday. (

πŸš’ A good Samaritan rescued an 11-month-old child from a burning home on West 102nd Street yesterday morning. (News 5)

πŸŽ“ Notre Dame College, which is shutting its doors for good this spring, has put its 50-acre campus in South Euclid on the market. (Crain's Cleveland)

4. Brews on Tues: Pioneer's Bear Can Lager

Photos: Sam Allard/Axios

πŸ‘‹ Sam here. There's no use denying that sometimes I'm in the mood for a conventional sports bar, a BW3-ish environment where I can sit back and watch local teams play on lots of large, high-def screens.

Yes, but: Unless you're carpooling to the suburbs, there are limited options.

Driving the news: I was in Ohio City with my wife last week, and we ducked our heads in at Pioneer, the "outdoor-themed" restaurant and sports bar in the Intro complex that opened in 2022.

The vibe: TVs galore, with a wood-forward interior design that gives it a bit of a bougie cast.

  • It's more "glamping" than "camping," if you catch my drift.

What I drank: Pioneer's house beer, a collaboration with Westlake's Sibling Revelry, called "Bear Can Lager."

  • The cans were sold out, but drafts and cans are both $5 β€” $3 during happy hour β€” the cheapest alcoholic beverage offering on the menu.

Verdict: A perfectly drinkable, refreshing summer beer.

5. πŸ€– Aerial insights

Sky is the limit. Photo: Russell Jones

If you've seen an amazing drone video or photo of Cleveland on social media, there's a good chance it was taken by a member of Jones Drones.

The intrigue: The local company, founded by Russell Jones in 2022, creates stunning videos for businesses and live events using certified drone pilots.

  • Its clients include the Cavaliers, Playhouse Square, Cleveland State University, the Cleveland National Air Show, and Cleveland Clinic.

Flashback: Jones previously spent more than 20 years doing tech and production work for a variety of companies, including Playhouse Square.

State of play: Jones Drones became his full-time gig nine months ago after producing the Cavs' pregame intro video for Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

What's next: Jones tells Axios his next step is to sponsor pilots in international drone racing competitions.

More jaw-dropping drone photos

Thanks to our editor Lindsey Erdody and copy editors Rob Reinalda and Bryan McBournie.

Our picks:

🍨 Sam (not even a big ice cream guy) just tried Mitchell's seasonal "Lemon White Chocolate Cookie" flavor, and it's among the best scoops of ice cream he's ever had.

πŸ˜” Troy's heart says Cavs in six, but his brain says Celtics in four.