'It’s A Hub For Artists': Meet The People Of Akron

“There’s no greater city on the planet," said one Ohio resident.

The quiet city of Akron, Ohio, is known to many as the rubber capital of the world and the place where Sojourner Truth gave her “Ain’t I A Woman?” speech. But for nearly 200,000 people, it’s home.

HuffPost hung out in Cascade Plaza for a day talking to locals about what makes Akron, well, Akron. Here’s what they had to say: 

“I like the quiet. ... I’m happy that people were very welcoming. I haven’t had any incidents being Muslim in Akron. It’s been easier.”

― Ayana Fakhir, 39, attorney

“I came back to Akron as part of a career change.”

― Kara Ulmer, 41, director of World Relief

“There’s no greater city on the planet. We’re a very welcoming, warm city.”

― Denny Wilson, 47, founder and executive director of F I Community Housing

“I just love the people here, I love the creativity, I love the energy. I love how everyone helps everyone.”

“And the food. We’re missing the mark on the food. Luigi’s is the best pizza you’re going to get.”

― Rachel Whinnery, 28, digital content, and Rachel Evans, 25, project manager

“All my family is from here. It’s where my roots are.”

― Matthew Luna, 31, flooring and construction

“My kids are very artistic and the art scene here in Akron is incredibly strong. It’s perfect.”

― Yoly Miller Heisler, 49, freelancer

“I love the way the city is set up. ... Twenty-three different neighborhoods, all diverse in nature. It’s a hub, if you will, for artists. Visual artists, vocal, poets, singers, dancers. A lot of people don’t know that about Akron.”

― Ace Epps, 46, community manager for BMe Akron

“It really has bits of the best of what America has to offer. ... We maintain an optimism and, hopefully, a unity here that can maybe be a little unique.”

― Phillip Martin, 27, health care and public safety



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