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November 2009 Archives

Milwaukee Public Market

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FILE0437.JPG Enclosed year-round market; just a dream in Chicago.


May 31, 2009----

MILWAUKEE---The Milwaukee Public Market is open year-round, but the best time
to visit is during the annual Summerfest celebration that runs in late June along the lakefront.

After all, a market stop makes it SummerFeast.

The 25,000-square-foot downtown market is loosely based on Pike Place in Seattle and has been called a model for a potential Chicago market. The market is three blocks west of the Summerfest grounds.

During an early May visit to the Milwaukee market I picked up some smooth cheese curds at the West Allis Cheese & Sausage Shop and Point Nude Beach Summer Wheat beer (whose provocative bottles are banned in Michigan!) at Thief Wine Shop and Bar. A stranger looked at me, smiled and said, "Cheese curds and beer, that's all you need."

Welcome to Milwaukee.......

Toronto Farmers Market---Real Old

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FILE0580.JPG The end of the day at the Flint Farmers Market in Michigan, the "Most Loved Market in America."

March 22, 2009--

TORONTO-- The big deal on my travel plate this summer is to visit lots of
farmers markets. You can see a city through the eyes of vendors,
hear about area restaurants and learn about growing patterns unique
to the region.

I began checking out markets in 2004 while working on a book on the Farm Aid movement. I spent time in Seattle interviewing rocker Dave Matthews, a Farm Aid board member, and discovered much about the city while working the aisles at Pike Place Market (established in 1907), which is actually much more than a farmers market. You still can find out-of-town newspapers at Pike Place.

Toronto was a good place to start this season of tasty tourism.
The St. Lawrence Market is one of the oldest markets in North America. The market is just east of downtown.......

Bob Waldmire, The Free Spirit of Route 66

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Bob's depiction of his VW van, a prototype in the film "Cars" (Courtesy of Bob Waldmire)
waldmire 11.jpg


ROCHESTER, ILL.--- Somewhere along the way in the mid-1990s I detoured from a Spring Training trip to visit deep gypsy Bob Waldmire at his Old Route 66 Visitor Center & Preservation Foundation in Hackberry, Az, just west of Flagstaff. Waldmire had purchased the Old Hackberry General Store (circa 1930) with money generated from his family's Cardinal Hill Farm in Rochester, Ill.
That was the first time Bob gave me his recipe for vegetarian chili.
I visited Bob earlier this week. He is dying from cancer. He is spending his final days in his converted 1966 Chevy bus/home on his family farm south of Springfield.
In the 1990s Bob concocted an Old Route 66 Chili Mix (cumin, Mexican chilies, onion, garlic, hot peppers, oregano, curry, coreander, paprika, salt, pepper, sugar and other spices). Variety is the spice of life.
Here's the hottest tip in the blogosphere:

Dave Hoekstra

Dave Hoekstra has been a Chicago Sun-Times staff writer since 1985. His collection of Sun-Times travel columns, "Ticket To Everywhere," was published in 2000 by Lake Claremont Press. He was lead writer for "Farm Aid: Song for America" (Rodale Press, 2005) which commemorated the 20th anniversary of the Willie Nelson inspired effort.
He won a 1987 Chicago Newspaper Guild Stick O-Type Award for Column Writing. Hoekstra wrote and co-proudced the WTTW-Channel 11 PBS special: "The Staple Singers and the Civil Rights Movement," nominated for a 2001-02 Chicago Emmy for a documentary program/cultural significance.
He lives in Chicago.

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This page is an archive of entries from November 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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