Looking for news you can trust?Subscribe to our free newsletters. On a gray afternoon in Juneau, 36-year-old Kristen Hemlock sat on her bed picking at a cold McDonald’s chicken sandwich, waiting for the checks to arrive. Her four-year-old son, Eli, chubby and dimpled, lay on his stomach on a bottom bunk two feet away, distracting himself with YouTube cartoons. Six-year-old Mason wasn’t home from school yet, permitting a fleeting truce in the brothers’ perennial war over her phone. In a home the size of a dorm room, it was a more reliable source of entertainment than their toy trucks and guns. Broken drawers spilled out of a chipped wicker dresser, and fleece blankets, one patterned with the phrase “I love you to the moon and back,” blocked light from the lone window. The boys’ father, 35-year-old Daniel Varner, sat at a tiny table in khaki overalls and work boots, jiggling his leg. “It’s delivery mail, isn’t it?” he asked … [Read more...] about How to hand out free money
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Does it feel like Christmas is earlier this year? It’s already time to think about your restaurant reservations for the holiday. Here are options for dinner on Christmas Eve (most restaurants that usually are open on Mondays are open during the day on Dec. 24, but not always at night) and for any meal on Christmas Day: 2Mesa — The regular menu of Mexican dishes is available from 5 to 10 p.m. Dec. 24. Alioto’s — Christmas dinner is served 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Dec. 25; entrées include roast turkey ($18.95) and 10-ounce filet ($28.95). A children’s menu is available. 3041 N. Mayfair Road, Wauwatosa. (414) 476-6900. Asian Fusion — The Chinese restaurant, which also serves some other Asian dishes, is open until 10 p.m. Dec. 24. 1609-C E. North Ave. (414) 273-6688. The Bay — The regular dinner menu will be served until 7 p.m. Dec. 24. 342 E. Silver Spring Drive, Whitefish Bay. (414) 455-3045. Bodegón in Hotel Madrid — … [Read more...] about Restaurants open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day: 2018
McCurdy's was a retail giant and pioneer in Rochester for nearly a century and the last of the locally owned family department stores. Though perhaps overshadowed by Sibley's — which was profiled in an earlier "Whatever Happened To…" installment — McCurdy's certainly made its own enormous impact in Rochester. Foremost was the development of Midtown Plaza, the first downtown shopping mall in the country and a project that revitalized the city shopping scene. McCurdy's also was the first Rochester department store to branch to the suburbs when it opened in Greece's Northgate Plaza in 1953. The business started as McCurdy and Norwell Co. in 1901 before changing its name to McCurdy & Co. 18 years later. Founder John Cooke McCurdy was a transplanted Philadelphian who was born in Ireland. The flagship store opened at East Main and Elm streets. Arch-rival Sibley's was further west on Main Street at the time but moved a few years later directly across from McCurdy's. That … [Read more...] about Whatever Happened To … McCurdy’s?
With summer here, we turn our thoughts this week to a way that Rochesterians kept cool in past years. The swimmobile was, as its name indicates, a mobile swimming pool that city workers brought to neighborhoods. Kids who otherwise couldn’t get to a pool or beach splashed about in the contraption, which looked like a semi-trailer cut in half and filled with water. City Recreation employees carted the swimmobile by truck to various locations, used water from hydrants to fill it, then hauled it away at day’s end. The city also had porta-pools that were set up for longer periods of time at various sites. Other cities, like New York City and Detroit, also used swimmobiles for a time. The longtime TV series The Simpsons even featured one in an episode. Rochester’s swimmobile debuted around 1967. A Democrat and Chronicle story that year said it was developed by then-Recreation Bureau director Joseph Caverly and copied by other agencies across the country. (Other news stories … [Read more...] about Whatever Happened to … Rochester’s swimmobile?
The Red Lion was a downtown restaurant where Rochester’s movers and shakers met to eat, drink and frequently hash out business and political deals. The business began in one of Rochester’s best-known buildings and later moved – begrudgingly – to a brand-new skyscraper just a half-mile east. The original restaurant was run by a group that included a former boxer who later became a town supervisor in Wayne County. Squabbles that forced the Red Lion to move filled news accounts for months. Two separate farewell parties were held after the initial closing date was “postponed.” A suburban version of the restaurant was on Monroe Avenue in Brighton, but this story is about the better-known downtown spot. Opened in 1968 in the Powers Building The Red Lion opened in 1968 in the Powers Building at 36. W. Main St., which had been renamed the Executive Office Building. The landmark building was Rochester’s tallest for years and was noted for engineering … [Read more...] about Whatever Happened to … the Red Lion?