ABC 3 and Oprah’s Big Give

30 04 2008

Today was the final day to donate to ABC 3’s Big Give.  The project was a spin off of Oprah’s Big Give who donated $10,000 to the Greater Lansing Food Bank for milk vouchers.  Tonight on ABC 3 News at 6, they ran a story on some grade school kids at Donley Elementary School in East Lansing who raised money for the cause.

Oprah’s give inspired school kids to collect money to help others and today that money was collected. 

“We need each other and I think it’s important to teach children to give back and to pay it forward and just to take care of people in their own community.  Teach them young that what we have we need to share” said an unidentified woman at Donley Elementary.

Tomorrow, there will be a press conference at Bethleham Lutheran Church where representatives from Oprah’s Big Give will officially hand over a $10,000 check.  More on that story tomorrow……

Coney Island Hot Dogs

30 04 2008

I love regional food.  I love that each city has it’s own trademark.  There are some things I miss now that I live in Michigan.  I get cravings Giordanno’s stuffed pizza every now and then.  There are places that claim to be “Chicago Style” pizzerias, but none of them are.  A deep dish pizza is not Chicago Style.  It’s the stuffed deep dish that makes it Chicago style.

While living in Central Illinois, I was introduced to the Horseshoe sandwich.  Man, do I really miss these.  A typical horseshoe took two pieces of toasted Texas toast laid out on a plate.  On top of that would be two hamburger patties.  On top of that, would be french fries and the whole thing was smothered in a cheddar cheese sauce.  There are variations on the concept.  Really, you can use any meat.  Most menus offer ham, turkey, pork, or chicken in place of the hamburger.  They also usually offer smaller sandwiches called Pony Shoes.  Recently, Charlie Parker’s was featured on the Food Network show Diner’s, Drive-Ins and Dives where they showed off a Breakfast shoe.  They replaced the traditional ingredients with sausage patties, hash browns and gravy.

I really miss yelling at people when they put ketchup on a Chicago Style Hotdog…..big no-no.  I haven’t been able to find a real Italian Beef sandwich around here either.  You never realize just how regional food can be until you move.

So with all that said, I keep seeing “Coney Island” restaurants around here.  Of course, that piqued my interest and I had to figure out what was going on.  Another blogger really caught my attetnion with this post.

It’s been quite some time since I’d had the competing Detroit-style coney with its chili sauce. This sauce is wetter than that of the Flint-style sauce and seems to be quite a bit milder. However, no one else in the house had ever had the Detroit-style coney, a situation I felt needed to be rectified. So when I realized GFS Marketplace stores are now offering a package of the Detroit-style sauce, I decided my family needed to see what it was like.

Wait!  There are different styles of Coney Dogs?  This is something that’s unique to Detroit?  I’m not a real big hot dog guy, but just the fact that this is something unique to this area is enough to make me suck it up for one dog just so I can say I did.  Road trip to Detroit!

So what else does Mid-Michigan have to offer as far as unique food goes?  Anything else I shoud be looking forward to?

Heinz Top This 2 TV Challenge

29 04 2008

Matt Cozza and Erika Warren from Chicago took the top prize in Heinz’s Top This 2 TV challenge.  The challenge was to make a commercial for Heinz Ketchup.  According to the Jackson Citizen Patriot, Cozza drew on experience at a Benton Harbor restaurant to make the commercial.

In the ad, a couple is seated at a table without a ketchup bottle. They look around the restaurant anxiously as other customers pour ketchup on their food and hoard their bottles. Finally a waiter brings a bottle, and the text, “Now we can eat,” appears on the screen.

For the effort, Cozza and his girlfriend Erika Warren (who is a Jackson native) recieved a $57,000 grand prize and their commercial will be played on Food Network, Fine Living Television, and on closed-circuit TV’s at Six Flags.

4 AM Bars Update

29 04 2008

A few weeks ago, I wrote about legislation currently stalled in the House of Representatives that would give cities/towns/villages, etc the ability to create a 4 AM liquor license.  HB4573 stalled in the House last October.

I wanted to know what was going on, so I e-mailed Rep. Steve Tobocman to see what his plans were.  This afternoon, I recieved the following response from his office.

While Representative Tobocman continues to work on this bill, he has been unable to secure the 56 votes that is necessary to pass it out of the House.  Representative Tobocman is committed to this legislation and our office will keep you updated on any changes or advancements. 

My suggestion is to call your representative and tell them to get on board.  This is a good revenue source and we all know Michigan needs it.

Facing Hunger. Feeding America

29 04 2008

Saw this on WLNS’s noon show today then found information in their website

Please join us as The Early Show kicks off a 12 day food drive Facing Hunger Feeding America. We are collecting non-perishable foods until May 10th, when the nation’s largest single-day food drive ‘Stamp Out Hunger’ will take place.

A growing number of people are using food banks to feed their families and because of this food supplies are now running short. Please help support this cause. You can participate at home by donating non-perishable items to your local food bank or to our station lobby. We are located at 2820 E. Saginaw in Lansing. 


Press Release – Lansing Art Council

29 04 2008

The following is a press release from the Lansing Art Council on their Taste of Art and Life event.

LANSING, Mich – On Thursday, May 15, from 5 to 8 p.m., the Arts Council of Greater Lansing will host its second annual “A Taste of Art & Life” spring fundraiser at the home of John and Jin Hui Noud on Willoughby Road in Mason, Michigan

Event highlights include a self-guided tour of the Noud’s home and art collection; a silent auction featuring original artwork by area artists, event and performance tickets, restaurant packages and fine foods; a wine tasting featuring a selection of fine wines provided by Classic Wines; a tasting of signature appetizers and desserts from area restaurants including Dusty’s Cellar, Gumbo and Jazz, Mitchell’s Fish Market, Red Cedar Grill and Troppo. 

For those interested in learning how artwork goes from concept to creation, six area artists will be on hand to demonstrate their craft to attendees.  Participating artists include: Jessica Klumpp-Held, mixed-media painting; Jorge Lazaro Mesa Mulet, woodcarving; Thomas Nelson, landscape painting; Cara O’Brien, ceramic tile making; Douglas Thayer, forged metal blacksmithing; and Chester Winowiecki, ceramic musical instruments.  In addition to the live demonstrations, all artists will have artwork available for purchase.

Live musical entertainment provided by classical jazz guitarist Greg Howe, will round out the event.  Valet service will also be available.

Tickets start at $75 ($60 of which is tax deductible) and are available now through the Arts Council of Greater Lansing by phone at 517-372-4636, ext. 10 or at the Center for the Arts, 425 S. Grand Avenue, Lansing, Michigan.

The 2nd annual A Taste of Art & Life is a fundraiser to support the Arts Council of Greater Lansing’s mission to lead, advocate for, and advance arts and culture in the capital region.  This year the Arts Council is pleased to recognize the generosity of several supporters including Blohm Creative Partners, Capitol National Bank, The Dart Bank, John and Jin Hui Noud, Jim and Jan Parish, Public Affairs Associates and Wharton Center for Performing Arts.

Fruitport High School Second in National Competition

28 04 2008

Congratulations to Fruitport High School‘s Culinary Arts program for finishing second in the National ProStart Invitational this past weekend in San Diego,

The Culinary Arts Team represented Fruitport Community Schools very well with a second place showing at the Pro-Start National Invitation in San Diego this past weekend.  They were competeing against the thirty eight best teams in the nation and clearly demonstrated that their skill and technique is remarkable. 

The ProStart Invitational is divided into two competitions.  There’s a culinary competition and a management competition.  In the culinary competition, teams prepare a three course meal in sixty minutes using just two butane burners.  Judging is also done of knife skills, appearance, and cleanliness of food preperation.  The Fruitport team was beat by just a fraction of a point.

“It’s just crazy — we’re second in the nation,” said team member and FHS junior Karly Krentz. “It’s hard to put it into words because it’s so cool. We just worked so well together.”

For their accomplishments, each of the five team members received full-ride scholarships to the New England Culinary Institute in Montpelier, Vt. They also received cash prizes from Coca-Cola and the National Restaurant Association.

The team is coached by Amway Grand Plaza Executive Pastry Chef Scott Hunter, 1913 Room Chef de Cuisine Christian Madsen, and FHS teacher Michael Wheeler.

“The kids did probably the best we could have ever, ever asked for,” said FHS teacher and coach Michal Wheeler. “Everybody did everything they needed to do at 110 percent, and they received tons of compliments from the judges. Most importantly, the kids feel really great about what they did.

“Of course, you go for first (place), so there was a little disappointment,” Wheeler added. “But second in the nation — wow! It’s just amazing.”

That’s a great accomplishment anyway you look at it.