Opening Spring 2019
3377 Warrensvile Center Road
WWW.SHAKER.LIFE | FALL 2018 45
The large indoor climbing complex
called Shaker Rocks will soon be a
destination for climbers of every stripe
all over Ohio and beyond.
“People are so excited,” says Annie
Richman, owner and developer of the
project, currently scheduled to open in
March 2019 at the corner of Farnsleigh
and Warrensville Center roads.
“I know we’re doing the right thing. This is going to put Shaker on the climbing map.”
It may elevate more than just Shaker Heights. Given its size, capacity, and design,
Shaker Rocks may give a boost to all of Northeast Ohio — the region’s young and future
When Shaker Rocks opens, the 17,000-square-foot facility will offer 70 different
climbing stations usable by some 200 participants at once. That’s enough for everything
from a busy Friday night to a regional or statewide competition.
“We’re trying to do something different here,” Richman explains. “That’s the whole
point of this. We could have gone into a warehouse somewhere, but that wouldn’t have
been any fun.”
Even non-climbers will have to take note. Between its unusual design and prominent
location, Shaker Rocks is bound to catch the eye of every motorist and pedestrian around
the new Van Aken District.
Unlike most buildings in Shaker Heights, Shaker Rocks will be constructed not
of traditional Shaker materials but of metal. On the architectural front, too, its sleek,
modern design will stand out among the Van Aken District buildings.
“People are going to drive by and go ‘Wow, look at that.’ It’s not just another brick
building,” Richman says, adding that at each unveiling of designs, “all we get is love.
People are so supportive and encouraging. They’re so intrigued and impressed that a
metal building can look so clever.”
Climbers, though, should be salivating. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or an
advanced competitor, and almost no matter what style of climbing you prefer, Shaker
Rocks will have you covered.
Represented across those 70 stations will be bouldering and lead, speed, auto-belay,
and top-rope climbing. Also slated to be on site: a yoga studio and all-purpose exercise
room with fitness equipment.
Don’t think of Shaker Rocks as a gym, in other words. Think of it as a place to play,
and to get fitter in the process.
“People don’t really love going to the gym, but climbing up a wall is really fun,”
Richman says. “Over time, people have realized climbing is a good thing.”
It’s certainly been good for Richman and family. Climbing, Richman says, turned her
children into mature, responsible,
and thoughtful teenagers, and her
into a strong, broadly fit adult.
Soon others will start to
experience the same benefits. With
Shaker Rocks in its midst, Shaker
Heights may soon be one of the
fitter cities in Northeast Ohio.
“When I started climbing, I was sore in muscles I didn’t even know I had,” Richman
says. “It works every muscle in your body, and a good portion of that is in your core. It’s
probably the best all-around fitness activity there is.”
Photo courtesy of Shaker Rocks