Estonians in Cleveland

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Tere tulemast

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Out & About - Photos and Event Recaps


Estonian Cultural Garden on Kid's Day 2016

On the first annual Kid's Day in the Cleveland Cultural Gardens, kids (of all ages) learned about the Estonian language, culture, history, geography and more. Teevi Champa of the Estonian Cultural Garden was one of the co-chairs of Kid's Day in the Gardens. When the group arrived at the Estonian Garden Teevi and Erika Puussar welcomed them and explained the various activities. The kids colored pictures of a Cornflower which is the national flower of Estonia.

Then story time with Erika Puussar where the kids learned to say dog (koer) in Estonian, and they played the Bees in the Garden game led by Teevi Champa that every kid plays in Estonia.

Playing a traditional Estonian game

Playing a traditional Estonian game

Photos and video from Kid's Day in the Estonian Cultural Garden

Estonian Cultural Garden on One World Day 2016

The Cleveland Estonian Cultural Garden and Estonian community participated in the 71st One World Day on August 28, 2016. They began with the Parade of Flags.

Estonia in Parade of Flags

Estonian Garden in Parade of Flags

Throughout the day members of the Estonian community of Cleveland hosted hundreds of visitors in the Estonian Cultural Garden and shared Estonian culture.

Erika Puussaar in Estonian Garden on One World Day

Erika Puussaar on One World Day

Photos and Videos of the Estonian Garden on One World Day

Erika Puussaar receives Freedom Award

The American Nationalities Movement held the annual Captive Nations Dinner in Cleveland on July 14, 2016. Erika Puussaar of the Estonian Community and delegate to the Cleveland Cultural Gardens Federation was honored with the Freedom Award.

Judge Ralph Perk Jr., Irene Morrow and Erika Puussaar

Judge Ralph Perk Jr., Irene Morrow and Erika Puussaar

Don't miss Erika's stories from the displaced persons camp during World War II.

Photos and Videos of Erika Puussaar receiving the Freedom Award

Estonian Cultural Garden 50th Anniversary

The Estonian Cultural Garden was dedicated June 19, 1966. An anniversary celebration event was held on June 26, 2016.

Young people at the Estonian monument

Young people in the Estonian Cultural Garden

Photos and Videos of the 50th anniversary of the Estonian Garden

Baltic Communities remember Senator George Voinovich

Erika Puussaar, a Director of the Cleveland Cultural Gardens Federation and delegate to the Estonian Garden, told how grateful the people of the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were to Senator George Voinovich for his work to get the Baltics into NATO.


Traditional Estonian Clothing

A highlight of the 6th annual Holiday Celebration of Cleveland's Diversity held in the atrium of the Global Center for Health Innovation in the Cleveland Convention Center by the International Community Council-Worldwide Intercultural Network (ICC-WIN) was the multicultural fashion show.

Models Erica Puussaar and granddaughter Emmi Puussaar

The skirt has folds in it which represent waves in the Baltic Sea. The necklace is amber, the traditional Estonian jewelry material. Emmi and Erika have returned from mushroom picking in the moist Estonian forests.

Fashion of Estonia

Fashion of Estonia

Fashion of Estonia

Videos and photos of the International Fashion Show

Lia Staaf receives Freedom Award

The American Nationalities Movement of Ohio (ANM) celebrated their 51st annual Christmas Luncheon and Freedom Award recognitions on December 19, 2015.

Lia Staaf, Gary Kotlarsic, Jane B. Sheats and the band Harmonia were honored.

Lia Staaf was born in Estonia and as a member of the Baltic American Committee worked for freedom for Estonia and the other Baltic States.

Irene Morrow, Lia Staaf and Ralph Perk Jr.

Irene Morrow, Lia Staaf and Ralph Perk Jr.

Photos/videos of the ANM Event

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Senator Portman Meets with Cleveland Eastern European Communities

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) traveled to Ukraine to meet with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, as well as other government officials. Portman has repeatedly called for increased U.S. military assistance to Ukraine as they continue to face Russian aggression.

Senator Portman and Cleveland Eastern European leaders

Senator Portman and Cleveland Eastern European leaders

On Friday, April 17, 2015 Senator Portman, co-chair of the Senate Ukraine Caucus, met with members of Eastern European communities in Cleveland to discuss his recent visit to Ukraine and Latvia.

More from Senator Portman's meeting at the Ukrainian Museum & Archives


Hans and Karin Ruus participated in the 95th anniversary of Lithuanian Independence at St Casimir Church on Saturday February 16, 2012. They were looking forward to Estonia's 95th the following week.

Karin and Hans Ruus

Karin and Hans Ruus


Estonian Community at Opening of Ames Family Atrium
Cleveland Museum of Art
October 28, 2012

The Cleveland Estonian community was represented at the grand opening of the Ames Family Atrium in the Cleveland Museum of Art on Sunday October 28, 2012.

Erika Puussaar and gradnson at Estonian Cultural Garden table

Erika Puussaar and grandson at Estonian Cultural Garden table

Back to Ames Family Atrium Opening at Cleveland Museum of Art

ClevelandPeople.Com Estonian Ambassador Erika Puussaar read a very short poem from Estonia called Apple Tree at the 2012 One World Day celebration in the Cleveland Cultural Gardens.

Erika Puussaar

Erika Puussaar

See more from One World Day 2012 in the Cleveland Cultural Gardens


Erika Puussaar at Estonian Garden - April 30, 2011

Erika Puussaar at the Estonian Garden


70th Anniversary of the occupation of the Baltic States
Remembrance of the victims of the initial Mass Deportation on June 13-14, 1941 at Latvian Evangelical Lutheran Church - June 13, 2010

Baltic States remembrance at Latvian Evangelical Church

2009 and before

Estonian and other costumes at One World Day 2008

Estonian and other costumes at One World Day 2008

Mixing of Estonian Soil in the American Legion Peace Garden
Photos and video as Estonian soil joins the soil of other nations in 2008

The Estonian football team lost to five-time world champion Brazil by 1 goal
The team's brave play gained attention all over the world.

Organizations and Resources for Estonians in Cleveland

Estonian Cultural Garden in Cleveland

Estonian Cultural Garden on One World Day 2008

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Business, Education and Employment Information

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Cleveland Estonian Feedback and Memories

Estonian National Anthem
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Estonian History and Culture

Tell us about the music, food, holidays, traditions, costumes, language and other qualities that make Estonians so special.

Estonian Garden sculpture

From Kalevipoeg: An Ancient Estonian Tale

Aga ükskord algab aega
kus kõik piirud kahel otsal
lausa lähvad lõkendama;
lausa tuleleeki lõikab
käe kaljukammitsasta-
küll siis Kalev jõuab koju
oma lastel' õnne tooma,
Eesti põlve uueks looma.

But one day an age will dawn,
when all spills, at both their ends,
will burst forth into flame;
and this stark fire will sever
the vise of stone from Kalevipoeg's hand.
Then the son of Kalev will come home
to bring his children happiness
and build Estonia's life anew.

After centuries of Danish, Swedish, German, and Russian rule, Estonia attained independence in 1918. Forcibly incorporated into the USSR in 1940 - an action never recognized by the US - it regained its freedom in 1991, with the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Since the last Russian troops left in 1994, Estonia has been free to promote economic and political ties with Western Europe. It joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004.

(facts courtesy of CIA World Fact Book)

Map of Estonia

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Profiles of Estonians in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio

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please let us know.
ClevelandPeople.Com - Estonian Ambassadors

Erika Puussaar
Erika Puussaar

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