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Museum of Broadcast Communications

December 10, 2017
  • 360 N. State Street
  • Chicago, IL 60654
  • (312) 245-8200
  • Website

There’s not a lot of things that I drag J to because I really want to go.  We’re not going to WWE events or rodeo’s or monster truck rally’s just because it’s something I would want to do.  We make sure our very limited entertainment time without the kids is something we both want to do.

I don’t even remember how I found it but back in October I saw an article in a Chicago newspaper about Saturday Night Live: The Experience opening in Chicago and immediately bought tickets.  J watches SNL most weeks so I just assumed she would like it and if nothing else, it would be some time in the city for just the two of us.

I’m not gonna lie.   I love SNL as much today as I did growing up in the 80’s and 90’s.  It’s still one of the highlights of my week and while not every show is a winner, there’s still a sketch or two from every episode that makes me chuckle.  I’ve seen a good chunk of the episodes including a lot of the early years both with and without Lorne Michels as the Executive Producer, so I was really excited for this exhibit.

The Chicago exhibition is taking place at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in downtown Chicago.  It’s on the corner of State Street and Kinzie Street.  It’s in a four story building that almost didn’t get finished.  The construction had a lot of funding issues and it took about seven years for the building to finished.  The museum opened in June of 2012. Read more…

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PFC Natural Grocery & Deli

December 9, 2017
  • 507 Harrison Street
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49007
  • (269) 342-5686
  • Website
  • Menu

I’ll tell you.  I’ve eaten more salads since I started working downtown than I have in the last ten years.  I end up at Irving’s Market & Deli quite a bit.  It’s close to where I work and it’s a quick, simple, delicious lunch to just either hit up the salad bar or the hot bar for the day.

I started to do the same thing last Thursday but when I got there, a salad didn’t really sound good and the hot bar was pretty picked over since it was closer to 3:00.  I ended up just grabbing a couple of Pepsi’s and coming up with a new plan.

I remembered seeing somewhere that People’s Food Co-Op has a deli and Thursday is taco day.  I checked their website to see if that was the case and sure enough, it was.  I walked back to my car to head to the east side of downtown.

PFC Natural Grocery & Deli is on Harrison Street between Michigan and Ransom just north of the railroad tracks.  This new, larger building opened in the spring of 2011 after moving from a much smaller location on Burdick Street near the State Theater.

Read more…

Elk Brewing North

December 6, 2017
  • 400 Dodge Street
  • Comstock Park, MI 49321
  • (616) 214-8172
  • Website
  • Menu

I love the way Founders Brewing does their big ticket beer releases.  Buy tickets online. Show up a few weeks later to pick up your bottles.  That always gives a reason to load the family up and head to Grand Rapids for an afternoon.  I get my beer.  We get a trip out of the house to someplace new.

We picked up my two bottles of Canadian Breakfast Stout but had no intention of staying for lunch.  The taproom was packed with a line out the door just to get a table before noon.  I had a couple of other ideas for lunch but it turns out, some places that are open for lunch during the week aren’t open for lunch on Saturday.

I was actually kind of stumped once my first idea fell through.  J asked if there were any breweries that we haven’t been to.  There, of course, are, but the ones I initially thought of don’t have food the kids would eat and I was even unsure if there was anything J would eat.

As we were driving back down Division, I thought of Elk Brewing.  I asked J to look up to see if they had food.  She said they did at their Comstock Park location.  I didn’t even know they had a Comstock Park location, but they had food and a kids menu so I pointed the car that way.   Read more…

Mannie’s Pizza, Subs, and More

November 21, 2017
  • 110 S. Farmer Street Suite B
  • Otsego, MI 49078
  • (269) 692-2500
  • Website
  • Menu

We haven’t gotten any snow yet but that hasn’t stopped the ski slopes from opening in November.

Last week, my assignment took me out to Bittersweet Ski Area just outside of Otsego. My co-worker called in sick, so this became a solo assignment that I quickly knocked out and moved on to the next task.

I was working an evening shift so it was dinner time as I was getting back in the car to head towards Kalamazoo.  I knew there was a pizza place just off the main drag in Otsego so I did a little research to see if I could find a menu.  It didn’t take long before I pulled up a Facebook page and found what I was looking for.

Mannies Pizza, Subs, & More is a small pizzeria on Farmer Street just south of M-89 in downtown Otsego.   It’s in a small building that is shared with Amish Oak Treasures.  It became Mannies pretty recently after being Joe’s Way Pizza for several years.   Read more…

Potters Lounge & Restaurant

November 6, 2017
  • 3600 E. Cork Street
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49001
  • (269) 385-6755
  • Website
  • Menu

I talk a lot about the travel I do for work but I have friends who live on the road.  At times, I’m jealous.  It’s work I would love to do, but I love having a family and being home with them.

A few weeks ago, one of my buddies called and said he was coming to Kalamazoo for a midweek job.  He got in to town on Halloween and asked if I wanted to meet for dinner. I wanted to take my kids Trick-or-Treating first so I told him we could meet as long as he was ok with a later meal.

He was good with and suggested I just meet him at his hotel and we’d go from there.  He told me he was staying at the Four Points by Sheridan on Cork Street which I knew had a restaurant.  He was pretty tired from travel and had to get up early the next day so I suggested we just hang there and have a few beers. Read more…

Chicago Subs & Grill

November 1, 2017
  • 1408 Portage Street
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49001
  • (269) 382-6871
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

Amazingly, it’s been almost ten years since J and I moved to Michigan….and eight of those years we’ve been in Kalamazoo.  I started this blog as Mid-Michigan Dining when we lived in Lansing.  When we moved to Kalamazoo, I started the current iteration.

If you’ve read this blog for any time, you’ll know how much I love Italian beef sandwiches.  They’re easily one of my favorite foods and I look forward to every trip to Chicago to get one.

It’s hard to find a good one in Michigan.  There are a few places that do a pretty solid job.  There are a lot of places that do a pretty awful job.   Finding the good places means going through the bad ones.

The first place I found that had an Italian beef in Kalamazoo was Chicago Subs & Grill.  About a month after we moved to Kalamazoo in 2009, I drug J to this little sandwich shop on the corner of Portage Road and Stockbridge Avenue looking to get my fix.  I was happy with what we got….not blown away by any means, but I liked the sandwich.

I drove by the shop a few weeks ago and realized I have never been back since that first visit.  Earlier this week I had time for a lunch break so I decided it was time to change that.

Chicago Subs & Grill isn’t the most inviting building in the world.  The sign is fading.  The paint is peeling off the wall.  It’s a restaurant that’s been around for a while and very little attention has been paid to the appearance of the building.

Read more…

Nonla Burger

October 29, 2017
  • 2103 S. Burdick Street
  • Kalamazoo, MI 49001
  • (269) 443-2270
  • Website
  • Menu

J doesn’t usually find out about new restaurants before I do.  She will typically say “have you seen xxx is opening” and I’ll usually say, “Yeah.”  She got me this week though when she asked if I had heard about the new burger place on Burdick.  I had not but as soon as I found their Facebook page, I had to get down there for lunch.

Nonla Burger is on the corner of Burdick and Alcott Streets in Kalamazoo’s Southside Neighborhood.  The little corner shop is just that.  Little.  It has a very small parking lot around a very small building on a very busy intersection.

Read more…