by Marissa Marangoni and Emily Dressler

10/11/2018

 

Wolf Creek Environmental Center/Alderfer-Oenslager Wildlife Sanctuary

by Marissa Marangoni

On my way to somewhere I can’t remember, I stumbled over some nature. It called, and I answered it at the Wolf Creek Environmental Center/Alderfer-Oenslager Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharon Center. I’d never heard of this place before, and I was delighted to happen upon it. There are several nice walking trails, a cool educational building, and the cutest collection of flowering lily pads I’ve encountered.

Being that the biggest attraction at the Environmental Center is nature, you could consider the bathroom to be any place in the great outdoors. What’s that saying — “If I sit, I shit?” Is that a saying? You could probably pee outside here without repercussions, barring any other trail walkers who might see you, but you ought to go into the Environmental Center bathroom instead. There’s toilet paper in there.

MORE URINE LUCK: Stan Hywet and Canal Place

There are also two toilets, two sinks and a baby changing station in the bathroom. My child was particularly impressed with the automatic entry door. I was impressed with the open space. Anyone who has changed dirty diapers in public bathrooms knows that changing tables (if there are any) are frequently situated poorly. Often, you’re left to battle swinging doors or smacking elbows while attempting to keep poop off your hands and your child from rolling off the table that is two sizes too small. The changing table space is A+ here.

The aesthetic space, however, is lacking. All the neutrals hang out in this bathroom. The walls and sinks are white, the counters are greenish-gray, the stalls are gray, and the floor is a marbly brown. This bathroom needs help with its bare-ness. I wish I was saying “bear-ness” instead, because I’m picturing entering through the mouth of a bear to reveal toilets with teeth and claws, a woodsy scene on the wall and maybe even furry, brown toilet paper.

MORE URINE LUCK: Pots and Pans Jamaican Cuisine & Cole LPA

To improve this potty, it wouldn’t need tiger stripes on the floors or a see-through aquarium wall to jazz it up (though those things would be great). There are all kinds of living and non-living creatures in this building already, and it’d be pretty simple to use what’s already here. Snakes, toads, birds, rabbits–the list goes on. Maybe one of those frogs would be happier hanging out in the bathroom. A nice taxidermied bird near the sink or a rabbit holding some soap would go far in tying all spaces of the building together and really emphasizing the whole nature theme.

With that said, you should go to the Wolf Creek Environmental Center. Check out the creatures. Walk through the Wildlife Sanctuary. Enjoy the greenery, knowing the scenery in the bathroom is boring. 2.5/5 toilets.

 

Wolf Creek Environmental Center/Alderfer-Oenslager Wildlife Sanctuary

6100 Ridge Rd.

Sharon Center, OH

 

Marissa saw Emily for the first time in a very long time yesterday. In person, we’re just as weird as we are in type.

 

 

Musica

by Emily Dressler

Here’s the thing: If you take me out and play me some good live music, let me see some old friends and buy me some beers, I can deal with the biggest shithole bathroom. It will still be a pretty good time. And when the bathroom is not the biggest shithole, it’s even better. This is how I felt at Musica for the Square Record 15th Anniversary party.  

The bathrooms at Musica are near the bar, as many good things in life are. The entrance to the men’s and women’s rooms are accessible and feel very grand for this space. Even if you didn’t know where the bathrooms were, you could easily find them. I’m pretty sure this venue is somehow connected to all the other buildings on High Street/East Market Street, and if you walked through them it would be a labyrinthian trail of bathrooms and who knows what else.

MORE URINE LUCK: Burntwood Tavern & Gasoline Alley

Speaking of labyrinthian bathroom trails in Akron (it’s surprising how much fun that is to say out loud. Try it): While at Musica, I learned that employees at Square Records in Highland Square use the bathroom at Skullz, whose bathroom I just reviewed last month. This is what I talk about when I go out. The bathrooms that connect us all.   

I am always pleased with the Musica bathrooms. The women’s room has three stalls and feels spacious and never smells bad. There are some nice industrial touches, like this cool grate above the fluorescent lights, but then also some homey touches, like flowers and vases. Even though Musica gets packed sometimes, I’ve never had to wait in line for the bathroom. What a perfect storm.

This bathroom has a small section of exposed brick, which everyone always loves. My favorite is that the exposed brick is in a tiny eave-type space. It looks like it used to be a window and then someone covered it up with brick and used the shelf space for toilet paper and an old copy of the Devil Strip. It’s a good look and it makes the necessity of toilet paper storage look like a casual afterthought, with the half-used rolls tossed around in a haphazard pile.  

MORE URINE LUCK: Merchant Tavern & Brubaker’s Pub

The first time I used the bathroom, I figured out that I was not to use the broken/empty soap dispenser on the wall, but rather the large industrial pink hand soap on the sink. The second or third time I used the bathroom, I noticed that the second stall was out of toilet paper, and since I was already enamored with the TP storage area in the cute alcove, I went ahead and re-stocked all the stalls.

You’re welcome, bar friends. Please pay it forward next time you’re out.

What I really like about this bathroom is that nearly every time I have used it, I run into someone I haven’t seen in a while. The women’s room at Musica: where everyone knows your name. This space gets a 4.5 out of 5.

 

Musica

51 East Market Street

Akron, Ohio 44308

 

Emily and Marissa have been writing for the Devil Strip as totally normal human beings for about three years now.

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