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Arts & Culture

Lolly the Trolley in 'park' after 37 years touring Cleveland and beyond

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Lolly the Trolley
Since 1985, Lolly the Trolley has patrolled Downtown Cleveland and shown up at events throughout Northeast Ohio. The service will end on Tuesday, May 17.

The owners of Trolley Tours of Cleveland announced they will officially end operations Tuesday. Owners Sherrill Paul Witt and Peter Paul piloted the fleet of cheerful, red trolleys for sightseeing tours and special events for almost four decades.

In a release, Paul Witt said when they started, “there were few people living in Downtown… there was no Rock Hall or Science Center. Baseball and football were at the old Municipal Stadium and the Flats, Ohio City and Tremont were just developing with urban pioneers working on rehabbing homes and loft spaces. Playhouse Square was in its infancy and the Cleveland Clinic was bringing Euclid Avenue back to life. In spite of it all, we entertained people with Cleveland’s colorful history and future predictions of what was going to come, all said with our fingers crossed!”

Paul Witt estimates the trolleys have attended more than 4,000 weddings and served more than 2.5 million people. She cited COVID-19 and other factors in the decision to close, adding “It is time for us to move on to our next adventures in life.”

At one time there were as many as 15 Lollys, which was reduced to eight over the past two decades to better meet demand. The biggest parade they attended was the 2016 NBA Championship Parade in Downtown Cleveland, and the oldest celebrity on Lolly was playwright George Abbot for his 100th Birthday at Playhouse Square in 1987.