Letters

Letters 04-14-14

Benishek Inching

Regarding “Benishek No Environmentalist” I agree with Mr. Powell’s letter to the editor/ opinion of Congressman Dan Benishek’s poor environmental record and his penchant for putting corporate interests ahead of his constituents’...

Climate Change Warning

Currently there are three assaults on climate change. The first is on the integrity of the scientists who support human activity in climate change. Second is that humans are not capable of affecting the climate...

Fed Up About Roads

It has gotten to the point where I cringe when I have to drive around this area. There are areas in Traverse City that look like a war zone. When you have to spend more time viewing potholes instead on concentrating on the road, accidents are bound to happen...

Don’t Blame the IRS

I have not heard much about the reason for the IRS getting itself entangled with the scrutiny of certain conservative 501(c) groups (not for profit) seeking tax exemption. Groups seeking tax relief must be organizations that are operated “primarily for the purpose of bringing about civic betterment and social improvements.”


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Monday, June 13, 2011

Summer Stages

Features Ross Boissoneau Summer Stages:What’s shaking ’round the region
By Ross Boissoneau
Theatre enthusiasts will have numerous options this summer, from
professional presentations to community theatre to student performances.

Williamsburg
The Williamsburg Showcase Dinner Theater, located on M-72 just east of
US-31 in Acme, hosts a performing troupe led by Dominic Fortuna. The three
different shows all boast a variety of songs from the ’60s through today.
Catering by Kelly’s provides the three-course meal, with your choice of
four entrees, while the audience is being entertained by the
singers/dancers/instrumentalists.
The shows run most Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. For a complete schedule
of the shows, as well as the menu or to
make reservations, contact the Williamsburg at (231) 938-2181 or go to
cateringbykellys.com.
 
Monday, May 23, 2011

Wishbones Coffee Shop & Cafe

Dining Ross Boissoneau Desperate times call for desperate measures.
That’s one way of looking at Wishbones, the coffeshop and café located smack dab in the middle of Cedar Creek Interiors furnishings and design store on Union Street.
Or you could look at it as a unique innovation, something that’s in vogue in some of the trend-setting areas of the country.
Kim Hooker says they’re both true.
“It’s something they’re doing in other places,” said Hooker, half the team at Cedar Creek Interiors, prior to the café’s opening. 
She also says that seeing other companies and stores going out of business locally and across the country gave them the impetus to try something different.
Hooker, an accredited designer, said she and her partner, owner Kevin Graves, were seeking a way to lend some new cachet to their store.
At the same time, Mark Fowler, one of the former principals at another local coffee shop, was looking for a new location. 
Opportunity, meet necessity. So Graves and Hooker began brainstorming with Fowler and his partner, Sarah Montgomery. “It’s about two couples who live together and work together – you’ve got to love that,” said Hooker.
 
Monday, May 16, 2011

Bungalow Inn

Dining Ross Boissoneau There’s no pretension at the Bungalow Inn. But if you’re looking for
service with a smile and excellent food – award-winning food, according to
various surveys – then you’re in the right place.
Owner Dave Gunia is justifiably proud of his restaurant. After
consistently winning awards from local publications, including Best Prime
Rib and Best Burgers from the Express, it’s easy to see why.
While the Bungalow Inn has been guarding Manistee’s southern border for 20
years, it didn’t start out as an award-winning restaurant. In fact, it
didn’t start out as a restaurant at all, but as a bar catering to
nightlife, with live music and DJs.
 
Monday, May 16, 2011

Thinking big with TED

Features Ross Boissoneau Ted is coming to Traverse City.
Make that TEDx. A daylong conference at Milliken Auditorium on Tuesday,
May 17, TEDx will feature speakers from across the spectrum making brief
presentations designed to inspire attendees.
That has been the goal of the entire TED initiative since it began in
1984. Originally focused on bridging Technology, Entertainment, and Design
– hence the name – its scope has become ever broader. Along with annual
conferences held in Long Beach and Palm Springs each spring, and the
TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh, UK each summer, various TEDx one-day
events have sprung up across the globe.
Now it’s Traverse City’s turn.
 
Monday, May 2, 2011

Stone House

Dining Ross Boissoneau One the Rise: Stone House: Café offers two locations and statewide reach
By Ross Boissoneau
There are now two cafés and a host of pastries and beverages available, but making the dough at Stone House Bread is all about, well, making the dough.
And it should be no other way. “It’s all about the bread,” said Toni Spearing, the owner of Stone House Bread.
With a café in Traverse City and one at the original location in Leland, plus the loaves on the shelves of grocery stores throughout the region as well as downstate, those looking for “an honest loaf of bread” have more opportunities than ever to find one.
 
Monday, April 4, 2011

22 Vines & Wines 4/4/11

Dining Ross Boissoneau 22 Vines and Wines: A taste of Asia in Leelanau County
By Ross Boisonneau
The cows probably wouldn’t recognize the milking area anymore.
Nor would Rich Van Steenis’s former clients recognize him.
Van Steenis, a former real estate developer and community planner, has
developed his own property at the Hilltop shops just off
M-22 south of Suttons Bay. Home over the years to various entities, now it
boasts a unique restaurant combining Thai food, pizza and more: 22 Vines
and Wines Cafe and Market.
 
Monday, March 21, 2011

Mana 3/21/11

Dining Ross Boissoneau The Magic of Mana
By Ross Boissoneau
With two n’s, the word manna is the bread from heaven. With one n, mana is the substance of the soul, or by another definition, what magic is made of.
Put it all together, and you get Mana, the new restaurant at the Mercado shops of the Grand Traverse Commons.
Ralph Humes, formerly one of the principals at the Soul Hole, opened his new eatery at Building 50 just a month ago. He’s already settling into a routine, open from 11 to 6 Monday through Saturday.
But don’t think that means the food is routine. His menu, posted on the giant board behind his counter, is in a state of constant refinement, but it includes such fare as pulled pork sandwiches and Drunken Peach Cobbler, along with vegetarian choices.
 
Monday, February 21, 2011

Buffalo Wild Wings

Dining Ross Boissoneau Fly like a Buffalo… ‘Wild’ new restaurant earns its wings
By Ross Boissoneau
It’s not the wild wild west, but the wings at the newly-opened Buffalo
Wild Wings are indeed as wild as you want them to be.
That’s because you can choose from a bevy of sauces, ranging from mild to
blazing, each with its own special flavor.
Teriyaki? Check. Honey BBQ? Check. Parmesan Garlic, Caribbean Jerk, Mango
Habanero? Check, check and check.
 
Monday, February 14, 2011

The Bay Leaf

Dining Ross Boissoneau Fine wines and rustic dishes flavor: The Bay Leaf
By Ross Boissoneau
Dan Kelly believes he knows what it takes to make a restaurant successful, particularly at 120 S. Park Street in Traverse City.
After all, he ran two profitable restaurants there before moving his operations east to open the M-72 dinner theater, The Williamsburg, along with his longtime catering business. The restaurants which followed at that location were not as successful, and he finally decided it was time to stop being a landlord and get back in the game.
“I had several tenants that failed, and I was tired of dealing with that situation,” Kelly said, taking a break from woodwork installation.
In addition to his own handiwork, Kelly gutted the kitchen and added booths as well as a wine bar and a new fireplace as he refurbished the interior. He also promises some more surprises to come in the deck area in back of the restaurant.
 
Monday, January 24, 2011

9 Bean Rows

Dining Ross Boissoneau Gourmet baking on the rise at 9 Bean Rows 1/24/11
By Ross Boissoneau
Man cannot live by bread alone.
But if you throw in a couple different kinds of croissants, some
napoleons, a chocolate mouse or two, you may be on to something.
That’s kind of the premise of 9 Bean Rows, the bakery now inhabiting
the former location of the Cook’s House at 439 E. Front Street. With
some 16 varieties of bread, croissants and the like, there are plenty
of choices for the sourdough-inclined.
 
Monday, January 10, 2011

4Play: Sahara Smith, Steve Tibbetts, Soft Machine Legacy, Lunatic Soul

Music Ross Boissoneau Sahara Smith – Myth of the Heart (Playing In Traffic Records)
It’s too simplistic to say that if you like Norah Jones you’ll like Sahara Smith, though that may well be true. Smith’s gentle music hews closer to country and folk than to Jones’s jazz/pop hybrid. Her singing is lovely and lilting, not as breathy as that of Jones. You might throw in a Tracy Chapman comparison, or even early Joni Mitchell or Judy Collins. But while Smith has clearly absorbed a number of influences, she’s just as clearly her own self. The tunes, all of which she wrote, combine pithy observations with countrified soundtracks for her characters. Not as epic as Springsteen or Tom Waits, more like epigrammatic, small chapters of interesting people. And all delivered with a sweet and innocent, yet knowing, voice.

 
Monday, January 10, 2011

Simply Cupcakes

Dining Ross Boissoneau Sweet Treats at Simply Cupcakes
By Ross Boissonneau
Life is sweet for Len Mayhew. With a little frosting on top.
And as the owner of Simply Cupcakes, Mayhew tries to make it that way for
everyone.
With 15 different varieties of individual cakes with fanciful names and
visual appeal, Mayhew believes he’s hit on a winning recipe. From Red
Velvet to Key Lime, Funky Monkey to Black Tie, the varieties offer eye
candy as well as tasty treats ranging from sweet to sour.
 
Monday, January 3, 2011

4Play: Various Artists, Chip Taylor & Carrie Rodriquez, Lang Lang, Gary Husband

Music Ross Boissoneau Various Artists – Soul Revival (Shout/NPR)
This compilation, put together by National Public Radio, starts off with a bang. “Do the 45” by Ryan Shaw harkens back to the heyday of soul shouters like Sam Cooke and Al Green. Eli “Paperboy” Reed keeps up the momentum with “Am I Wasting My Time?” complete with spine-tingling yelps. Both feature instrumental backing reminiscent of the best soul music of the ‘60s and ‘70s, with chittering rhythm guitars, organ, handclaps and horns. Raphael Saadiq’s “100 Yard Dash” is more sedate than the title might suggest, and Chaka Khan’s “Disrepectful” with Mary J. Blige is an unqualified treat. Imagine a whole CD like that. Now stop imagining and listen.
 
Monday, December 20, 2010

4Play: Willie Nelson, Richard Thompson, Dierks Bentley, KT Tunstall

Music Ross Boissoneau Willie Nelson - Country Music (Rounder Records)
When Willie Nelson was busted for pot, yet again last week, he said “I feel great! I feel six ounces lighter.” It is that kind of spirit that is featured on this recording. The Grammy-nominated “Country Music” has the relaxed feel of Willie getting together with his best buds and playing classic country tunes with mostly acoustic instruments. It has the sound of a group of pickers crowding around one mic and swapping solos on fiddles and mandolins. “Satisfied Mind,” “Pistol Packin’ Mama” and Hank Williams’ “House of Gold” are standouts, but the collection includes 15 tunes and they are all good and fun.

 
Monday, December 13, 2010

4Play: Duffy, Carole King & James Taylor, Trey Gunn, The Bombastic Meatballs featuring Chad Smith

Music Ross Boissoneau Duffy – Endlessly (Mercury)
The Welsh pop chanteuse has teamed up with producer/composer Albert Hammond for a set of songs that hit all the bases: there are string-laden, melancholy mood pieces (“Don’t Forsake Me”), electro-house beats (“Lovestruck”), pure pop for now people (“Girl”), jangly alternative acoustic rock (“Breath Away” and the title track). Throughout, Duffy’s little girl voice matches passion with compassion. Think Petula Clark meets Claire Grogan. Like those two singers, the voice can become too thin or simply wear on the listener after a while. But the songs stand up to repeated listens, the accompaniment is spot-on, and if the listener can get used to or even enjoy her little-girl voice, there’s much to be savored here.
 
 
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