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Brown water

David Beach  |  12/11/06 @ 12:39pm

Several million influential people now know Cleveland as the place of freezing brown water, sewage, and beaches littered with used condoms and syringes, thanks to a front-page story in Sunday's New York Times.

The story was about the gonzo surfers who brave winter weather to catch big waves off Edgewater Park. That was cool. But the story also dredged up disgusting descriptions of the Cleveland lakefront.

Not all the descriptions were entirely fair. (Lake Erie water is really blue and clear, and the enormous sewer overflow pipe at Edgewater rarely overflows now because of major investments to correct the combined sewer system.) However, the story is an example of how much Cleveland's image depends on the quality of the lakefront and the environment.

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