Lorain is a city of 64,000 people (2019) 30 miles west of Cleveland in Northeast Ohio. A former industrial center for shipbuilding, auto manufacturing, and steel, like other Rust Belt cities, the city faces population decline and urban decay.
The city sits on the shore of Lake Erie, at the mouth of the Black River. The city is Ohio's tenth largest city, the third largest in Greater Cleveland, and the largest in Lorain County by population.
The city began as an unincorporated village, Charleston, in 1834. It was incorporated as a village under the name Lorain in 1874 and became a city in 1896.
The 1924 Lorain–Sandusky tornado hit the city on June 28, 1924. The tornado formed over the Sandusky Bay during the late afternoon hours and hit Sandusky, where it killed eight people and destroyed 100 homes and 25 businesses. After moving east over Lake Erie for several miles, the tornado then struck Lorain, killing 72. Among the dead were 15 people inside a collapsed theater, which makes it the worst tornado-related death toll from a single building in Ohio. Eight people were also killed inside the Bath House near the location where the tornado came onshore.
The city's economy has focused on heavy industry. Major industrial operations included the American Shipbuilding Lorain Yard on the City's east side, the Ford Motor Company Lorain Assembly Plant on the City's west side, and the steel production sector on the City's south side, NW consisting of the United States Steel and Republic Steel companies.
The American Shipbuilding Lorain Yard closed in 1983,urging more than 1,500 people out of work. The Ford Lorain Assembly Plant ceased production operations in 2005. In March 2020, US Steel idled its Lorain mill indefinitely, laying off 250 workers. At its peak in 1982, it had employed 8,600 people.
Amherst is south of Lorain, Vermilion to the west of Lorain and Sheffield Lake is to the east.
The easiest way driving into Lorain from the west is to take Exit 10 from Route 2 and head north into Lorain — about a 10-minute drive. From the East, take Exit 151 from Route 2 and head due west on Route 611 (Colorado Ave) into Lorain — also about 10 minutes.
- Lorain County Transit, ☏ . Bus from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, Elyria Park and Ride and Oberlin College
- 1 Charles Berry Bridge.
- 2 Lorain West Breakwater Light (Lorain Lighthouse).
- Lorain International Festival. Every year, as part of the festival, there is a pageant of princesses who each represent their heritage.
- Lakeview Beach, 1800 West Eire Ave, ☏ .
- Century Beach, East Erie & Massachusetts, ☏ .
- Great Lakes Kayaking, 1355 Black River Parkway, ☏ .
- Bo-Kay Fishing Charters, Spitzer Lakeside Marina, ☏ .
- Sandy B. Fishing Charters, Spitzer Lakeside Marina, toll-free: .
- Lorain Harbor. Warm water attracts waterfowl throughout the year. The breakwater and jetties can reveal great blue and black-crowned herons, as well as purple sandpipers. To East Pier, take Route 6 to Arizona Avenue north 500 feet to parking. To Municipal Pier, take Route 6 to Oberlin Avenue north 1,000 feet to parking.
- Speigelberg Orchards, 6161 Middle Ridge Rd, ☏ .
- Rebman Recreation, 5300 Oberlin Ave, ☏ .
- Lorain Underground Railroad Station, 100 Black River Landing. Reflective Garden and Monument commemorating the Underground Railroad which led slaves to freedom.
- 1 Lorain Palace Theatre, 617 Broadway, ☏ . A "Movie Palace" in 1928, this restored Gothic theatre showcases drama, music, movies.
- Harrison Cultural Community Centre, 1922 Hamilton Ave., ☏ . Community resource site focusing on African American heritage, tutoring and mentoring youth.
- Stocker Arts Center, 1005 North Abbe Rd (Lorain County Community College), ☏ . Performing and visual arts.
- My 2nd Home Resale Shop, 5350 Oberlin Avenue Bldg C, Suite 201, ☏ .
- Beachcliff Diner, 2405 West Erie Ave, ☏ .
- Diso's Bistro at All Nations, 4286 Oberlin Ave, ☏ .
- Fligner's Market, 1854 Broadway, ☏ .
- Jackalope Lakeside, 301 Lakeside Ave, ☏ . Casual, on Lake Erie overlooking Lorain Lighthouse.
- Rose Café at Lakeview Beach, 1800 West Erie Ave, ☏ . Breakfast and lunch, brunch on Sunday. Overlooks Rose Garden and Lake Erie.
- Speak of the Devil, 201 W 5th St, ☏ . A cocktail bar in downtown Lorain.
- Mutt & Jeff's, 3700 Oberlin Ave, ☏ .
- Arbor Lights Bed & Breakfast, 3454 East Erie Ave, ☏ .
- Lorain Public Library, 351 W Sixth St, ☏ .
|Routes through Lorain|
|Sandusky ← Vermilion ←||W E||→ Sheffield Lake → Cleveland|
|END ←||N S||→ Amherst → Ashland|