CUYAHOGA FALLS — Adam Bauer on Friday afternoon took an elevator ride that he will likely never forget.

Adam, along with his father, Jeff, and his mother, Kelly Kennedy, took a “first ride” in the city’s new elevator in the green parking deck. The elevator exits onto Front Street next to the former Falls Theater site.

Adam is a Woodridge High School freshman-to-be with autism. Kennedy said her son’s “life-long love is elevators.” Walters said he met Adam and his mom at the end of the Front Street grand opening event in February. 

When they spoke in February, Walters said that Adam knew about the new elevator that the city was building in the green parking deck. 

Walters said Adam was “excited” when he was offered the opportunity to be the first rider on the elevator.

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On Friday — the day before the city’s Front Street parade and festival — Adam was joined by his parents and other family members for a ribbon-cutting and a “first ride” on the elevator. Actually, “first rides” would be a more appropriate phrase as Adam took turns riding the elevator with his parents, Walters and other family members.

Adam and his parents took the first ride to the third floor, returned to the first floor, and were greeted with applause and cheers from family members and city officials gathered in the lobby.

“Who all wants to ride in the elevator?” asked Adam after he exited the elevator following one of several rides.

Jeff Bauer said his son is interested in finding antique elevators and taking rides on them.

After taking the rides, Adam watched the elevator travel up and down through the glass wall, and reminded his dad that he had to “call it” by pressing the button so that they could watch it travel from floor to floor.

A gold plaque will be posted inside the elevator with an inscription reading: “Elevator Dedicated, 6-1-2018, ‘First Ride,’ Adam Bauer.”

“You’re going to be famous because everyone is going to know you were the first one [to ride in the elevator],” said Walters to Adam after showing him the plaque Friday.

Jeff Bauer said the initial rides were “great,” and said he “loved” the idea to put a plaque in the elevator commemorating the day.

The mayor also presented a certificate to Adam, but as that happened, Adam’s eyes remained on the new elevator.

Kennedy said the inaugural elevator ride was all Adam had talked about “for three or four months.”

Adam smiled as he posed for a photo with the mayor on the elevator with the plaque. It was certainly a day that forever will be etched in his memory.

“This made his dream come true completely,” added Kennedy.

Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421,, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.