September 11, 2009 |
Recent reports have noted that in Beijing, folks have taken to hanging out at Ikea, lounging on the comfy sofas in air conditioning while sucking down free soda refills. It is a classic case of "You can take a Communist to capitalism, but you can't make him buy. " But if nothing else, creating a faux Swedish name in Mandarin would be a fun parlor game. Here in Philadelphia, Ikea is working to keep you in the store. Still buying, yes, but viewing the experience as a family friendly event with a town-square ambience.
September 10, 2009 |
HOT DOGS aren't just for baseball games and barbecues anymore. Check the menus at a handful of gastro pubs or even high-end restaurants around town, and you'll see a haute dog gussied up with all manner of homemade fixings. Brought to America by German immigrants in the late 1800s - the word frankfurter comes from Frankfurt, Germany - the humble wiener's original pedigree was more show dog than mutt. Traditionally, butchers ground leftover cuts of meat, usually pork shoulder, added spices and then emulsified the mixture, making a kind of mousse.
April 3, 2009 |
Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse in Fairmount Park reopens the playground for the season with the fourth annual Play-a-Palooza on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Taller Puertorriqueno and Univision will provide games, arts and crafts, and painting activities for children 10 and younger. Families can take a park tour on a Philadelphia Fire Department engine. Adding to the fun will be a mascot who will mingle with the children. Free hot dogs and sweet treats will be available. Fourth annual Play-a-Palooza, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse, near North 33d and West Oxford Streets in eastern Fairmount Park.
December 28, 2008 |
"Winter Madness," proclaimed the Internet ad. "Look at this offer," I said to my husband. "We can fly to Iceland and stay four nights for less than we would pay for a weekend in New York City. " "Book it," Doug said. So I did. Three weeks later, we were on our way to a totally unfamiliar country. I knew that the capital city, Reykjavik, had an all-night bar scene, but we rarely stay up through the news at 11. I was more than a little uncomfortable "winging it" in a cold, rocky land where the names of the towns contained strange symbols and at least six syllables.
October 26, 2008 |
Over the years, the number of high school mascots seems to have gradually dwindled. One has to search high and low for a decent cartwheeling bear or a push-up-savvy jaguar. However, there are still some schools that hold the tradition of the mascot sacred. One is St. Joseph's Prep. Each year at 1733 Girard Ave., a raucous competition is held in a packed gymnasium to crown a new mascot. To earn the privilege of wearing the eye-catching Hawk costume and continuously flapping the wings through every game, even during time-outs and halftime, three Prep seniors recently battled on the hardwood in front of classmates and teachers.
September 25, 2008 |
Just hot dogs. The Philadelphia police bomb squad detonated three suspicious packages outside Citizens Bank Park last evening that actually were hot dogs accidentally left behind after a Hatfield commercial shoot that involved the Phillie Phanatic and his hot-dog launcher. Police received a call at 4:13 p.m. about the three packages found on a light post near the first-base gate on Pattison Avenue near Darien Street. Once the bomb squad arrived, Pattison Avenue was closed to traffic and pedestrians, and game-day employees evacuated the building.
August 1, 2008 |
A national cancer prevention nonprofit is using an in-your-face TV commercial to ask the Philadelphia School District to ban hot dogs and other processed meats from its cafeterias. In a spot that launched on four local stations yesterday, the Cancer Project warns that processed meats can lead to an increased risk of cancer. Citing a report by the American Institute for Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund, the group says that eating hot dogs, sausage patties and similar foods increases a person's risk of colorectal cancer by 21 percent for every 50 grams eaten daily.
July 3, 2008 |
You might say hot dogs are as American as apple pie. Except we eat 10 times as many hot dogs a year as slices of pie, according to the market research group NPD. We down most of our dogs - roughly 7 billion - between Memorial Day and Labor Day, according to the Washington-based National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. That's 818 hot dogs consumed every second during that time frame. And on Independence Day alone, we'll eat 150 million hot dogs. Philadelphia ranked fourth in the top hot-dog-consuming cities of 2007, with $46 million worth of franks eaten.
June 30, 2008 |
The final belches cleared on Saturday, with contests in Camden and California. But only one Philadelphia-area competitor has made it to Friday's legendary hot-dog eating contest on Coney Island, which will be televised live at noon on EPSN. He's "Humble" Bob Shoudt of Royersford, a world-ranked eater who gobbled 38 Nathan's franks last month to win the Philadelphia qualifier. And he's a better burger eater, the vegetarian says. Drexel Hill's Eric "Steakbellie" Livingston ate 20-3/4 in Camden Saturday, but lost to New York hip-hop artist Eric "Badlands" Booker, who ate 27-1/2.