New Book on Cleveland's Millionaires' Row Raises Over $1000 for Willoughby Rotary Autism Project

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Cleveland Storyteller Dan Ruminski's new book, "Cleveland in the Gilded Age - A Stroll Down Millionaires' Row," has already raised over $1000 for the Willoughby Rotary Autism Project. Mr. Ruminski has been donating a portion of the proceeds from each book sold to the club to provide iPads for children with autism.

Peek inside the once-grand mansions Rockefeller, Drury, Mather and others called home and hear the delightful stories that bring the past to life. (photo)

Peek inside the once-grand mansions Rockefeller, Drury, Mather and others called home and hear the delightful stories that bring the past to life.

I really appreciated the approach you took in telling stories about the great locations to bring them alive with the personalities of those who lived there

When Dan Ruminski and coauthor Alan Dutka released their new book, "Cleveland in the Gilded Age - A Stroll Down Millionaires' Row," Mr. Ruminski saw it as a way to help support one if his favorite charities. Published last December by The History Press, and featuring 160 pages with over 80 images, Mr. Ruminski pledged one dollar for each book he directly sold for Willoughby Rotary's iPads for autistic children project.

Classical musician Zsolt Bognár wrote Mr. Ruminski to say, "I really appreciated the approach you took in telling stories about the great locations to bring them alive with the personalities of those who lived there."

As a long-time member of The Rotary Club of Willoughby, Cleveland storyteller Dan Ruminski has made several presentations as part of a "dinner and a story" to help raise funds for the autism project. But this hasn't been enough for Mr. Ruminski, who decided that a portion of his book proceeds could also help fund this worthwhile cause. The book offers a peek inside the once-grand mansions these millionaires called home, relating delightful stories that bring the past to life. Join Ruminski and Alan Dutka on a return to this section of Euclid Avenue, which wasn't merely the most stunning show of wealth in Cleveland but also in the entire country.

Mr. Ruminski's stories are based not only on published works, but also on interviews of the friends and descendants of the families of the era. He started off sharing these stories with small groups, but was soon speaking of Cleveland's glory days to large, full house audiences. He speaks without notes, teleprompters or lecterns. Dan Ruminski creates a spellbinding entertainment experience - The Storyteller in his chair, sharing unique stories of Cleveland's past. Audiences began to ask him to write a book, or create DVDs of his stories of John D. Rockefeller, Francis Drury, Samuel Mather and more giants of industry built Cleveland's Millionaires' Row.

The Willoughby Rotary Foundation supports the Autism Project with fundraising by Cleveland History Lessons, featuring Dan Ruminski, Storyteller. Research has determined that autistic children who have difficulty communicating can have their communication skills improved dramatically with iPads. The touch screen and layout make the iPad easier to use for individuals with coordination or learning difficulties. Typing is not required, as many apps feature bright, colorful icons that are manipulated by tapping and sliding. The iPad can help individuals with autism improve basic social, fine motor, language and communication skills. Users learn to communicate and express themselves with their iPad without the frustration they commonly experience.

For more information, please visit http://www.clevelandhistorylessons.com and http://www.willoughbyrotary.org/autism.html

About Cleveland History Lessons
The Cleveland Storyteller began in April of 2008 at Gates Mills Library. Forty people were expected and over 100 showed up. Motivated by his passion and the response to his talks, Dan continues to research Cleveland history, specifically the families of Millionaires' Row and their contribution to Cleveland's greatness during the years 1875-1929. He has created a collection of stories that are constantly updated and fresh and shares those stories at events and venues throughout the Cleveland area. His goal is to promote Cleveland nationally, rebuild Cleveland pride, and overcome outdated, uncomplimentary stereotypes.

About the Willoughby Rotary Autism Project
Willoughby Rotary members voted to help families in our community affected by autism by providing iPads and information on appropriate apps. To provide a unique way to generate awareness and revenue, Rotarian Dan Ruminski volunteered to hold a series of "WRAP Cleveland History Talks," featuring dinners and spellbinding stories, His efforts have attracted sponsors, sold-out audiences, and raised thousands for autism. Willoughby Rotary Foundation is a 501(c)3 charitable organization that has contributed over $250,000 to Rotary International humanitarian programs and more than 30 Ohio charitable causes since 1998.

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