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Friday, September 25, 2009

Rad Beer Festival at Eastern Market, Detroit

If you like festivals... and beer... like me, then this sounds pretty rad.  The first ever Harvest Festival will commence at the Eastern Market downtown on October 24th 2009.  Since the festival is being put on by the Michigan Brewer's Guild and the Metro Times the centerpiece of the festival will, of course, be the beer.  According to the festival info website, there will be more than 40 breweries and brewpubs on location and over 200 beers to sample.  The samples will be doled out in 3oz sampling cups.

$35 gets you in to the festival if you get your tickets early, which I thought was pretty expensive, but it also gets you 15 drink tokens.  If 1 token gets you one sample then that's 15 x 3 = 45 oz of craft beer samples.  That's like drinking a 40 of craft beer for $35.  There might be some beers there that are extremely high gravity though, and this also includes the entertainment portion of the festival.  Food from local restaurants will also be available for purchase.  Also, designated driver tickets will be available at the gates for $5, which is awesome, but if Detroit had a metro system that ran to the suburbs then everyone could buy the $35 ticket (hint hint Detroit).  All tickets are available at the MBG website.

The Harvest Festival is going to last from 1-6pm.  Which I think is rad because then after the festival is over those still wanting to party can hit the bars in downtown Detroit to rabble rouse until the wee hours.  Those that want to sober up and head home can step out for dinner at one of the fine restaurants they have sampled food from and then head home.  Or if you live in downtown, your home will only be a walk away while it is still fairly early in the evening.

All in all I love festivals like this one.  Anytime people come together to celebrate beer, and local beer at that, is a beautiful thing.  Plus Fall is the best time of year in Detroit.  A window of time when the air is crisp and refreshing yet the ground is free of the ice and snow that plagues the winter months.  For more info on the Harvest Festival visit the Michigan Brewers Guild blog, the MASH.

Go get your tickets for The Inaugural Harvest Festival!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Girl Talk is rad

You may have heard of him already but I just read about this artist in "Details" magazine's October issue.  They had a feature article on him that covered everything from his story to the controversial question of whether what he does is illegal or not.  His name is Gregg Michael Gillis, AKA Girl Talk.

Girl Talk is simply a man on stage with a laptop, at least that's what he wants you to think.  It's what is on the laptop that so many college age and young professionals have been talking about around campuses and water coolers.  Gillis is a master at mixing (called "mashup") unrelated vocal and instrumental tracks often times pitting rap lyrics against the background of classic rock or pop songs.  He then creates his own playlists of these mashes and plays them on stage for concertgoers.  The best part is you can also get on stage and take your turn dancing with Girl Talk.  That's right, he's not concerned about fans on stage, which makes most of his concerts look like a rave type dance/college house party.  To keep his laptop dry, he told Details, he wraps it in plastic wrap before each show.

Born in 1981, Gillis grew up in Pittsburgh, PA. and attended Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. where he studied biomedical engineering.  After college he started working at a biomedical firm while still producing his mashup creations.  It got to the point that he was using vacation days and leaving on weekends to play shows in London, Paris, New York, etc. and then coming back to tissue samples at work, without telling any of his co-workers.  Finally, Gillis quit his job in 2007 to become a full time musician. 

Girl Talk's latest album "Feed the Animals" was released in 2008 on the Illegal Art label.  You can check it out on his myspace page (linked above) or you can download it for whatever price you want to pay for it at .  

All of the info here comes from the Details article, the wikipedia page and his myspace page.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ernie Harwell Final Farewell, Thanks Ernie!

Ernie Harwell is best known for calling balls, strikes and home runs for the Detroit Tigers for 42 years. He retired in 2002 and earlier this month was diagnosed with inoperable, incurable cancer of his bile duct.  

Last night at Comerica Park, in the middle of the third inning of the Tigers win against the Kansas City Royals, he said what will probably his last goodbye to the Tigers, their fans and the city of Detroit.  Harwell thanked the Tigers organization, specifically Mike Ilitch and Dave Dombrowski.  He declared that there were no better fans than Tigers fans.  And he told of his love for the state of Michigan and the "grit" of those who live here.  All while the crowd at Comerica cheered.  I think the "sweetest sorrow" part of his speech was when he said that the best part of his life, his story, was that it would end here in Michigan.  

Once again, Ernie revealed how humble and thankful he is to have had the career he did.  He was the first announcer inducted in to the Baseball Hall of Fame while still working.  He will also be named honorary captain this Sunday as the Lions take on the Vikings at 1pm at Ford Field.  Ernie is truly a legend of baseball, and he will always be remembered.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

R.I.P. Swayze

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Patrick Swayze, famous actor and star of the films Dirty Dancing, Ghost and Roadhouse has lost his battle with cancer at the age of 57.  He had battled for two years with the pancreatic cancer and even started acting in a new TV show called "The Beast."  

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Swayze's biography and filmography from wikipedia can be found here

Patrick was probably most well known for his award winning performances in Dirty Dancing

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and Ghost, 

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but I will always remember him as Dalton from Roadhouse 

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and as the good looking Chippendales dancer who played opposite Chris Farley's Barney character.  

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Also, who can forget his bank robbing zen surfer from Point Break, Bodhi?

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Memorable lines of Swayze's

"Pain don't hurt much."  Roadhouse

"On pure moves alone you beat me any day."  SNL Chippendales sketch

"Little hand says it's time to Rock n Roll!."  Point Break 

His movies live on.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Detroit Restaurant Week

This fall downtown Detroit is doing something very rad.  There are 17 restaurants that for ten days ( September 18th-27th) are offering up three course meals for $27/person (excludes beverages, tax and gratuity) during an event called Detroit Restaurant Week.  The 17 restaurants and Detroit are putting this on to obviously get people out of their houses, out of the suburbs and down to the city where things are starting to look better for businesses new and old.  I think this is a great idea and an opportunity to try food from places that you would not normally go.   There will also be plenty of after dinner entertainment for those looking to make a night out of it.

For a list of restaurants participating and what they will be serving please visit

Bon appetite!

Cutting edge Study

News flash... drinking and driving is bad and causes more accidents than if you don't drink and drive... or at least according to a study done in Italy, where apparently they have never heard of this crazy idea. Oh yeah, sleep deprivation and driving doesn't mix either.

According to a new study from Italy people that have one or two drinks at dinner (even just a glass of wine or beer) tend to get in more car accidents than those who don't.  One word for this study... genius.  When asked what they were doing right before they got in to the accident many people interviewed said they had been having after work drinks with colleagues or at a celebratory dinner... having drinks.  

I'm sorry but haven't we known this info for a while?  Alcohol affects your judgement and motor skills, which can in turn make your reactions slower and makes you more likely to get in an accident.  They must be bored in Italy.  Plus, even though people already know this, it does not seem to prevent them from still drinking and driving.  And who drives in Italy?  In most of the major cities there is at least a bus system and roads and streets that are very walkable.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Give me that fish!

According to fast food restaurants like Long John Silver's and McDonald's may have to look elsewhere for fish used in their filet o' fish sandwiches.  

In the article yahoo says that the hoki fish that is used in the filet o' fish sandwich is being over fished and is not as sustainable as once thought.  The fish, native to the deep seas near New Zealand, was thought to be a self sustaining option for fish meat.  It has a relatively short reproduction cycle and life, living for an average of only 25 years.  Recently the quotas for this fish have been lowered because of the self sustainability controversy.  
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The hoki fish in all it's glory!

Hopefully this issue will be resolved, and McDonald's will not have to shut down the ever so healthy and lucrative filet o' fish business.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

LaborFest 2009

School is back in and so am I.  Welcome back to rad-aholic after a long summer.  A lot of things went down over the summer that kept me too busy to blog but boy are going to kick off this year with a bang.  

First up... LaborFest '09.

There is a well known lake in the north metro Detroit area called Cass Lake.  Every Labor Day for the past 4 years it has come alive with a celebration that can only be described as a Kid Rock music video.  There is sun, water, pontoon boats, BBQing, music, dancing, volleyball and all sorts of drinking games.  The cost was $10 per person but the experience is priceless.

LaborFest was started by the 20 or so families that all own cabins/cottages on the lake.  They have celebrated Labor Day at the lake for numerous summers.  They started inviting friends up to the lake to help celebrate.  Those friends started inviting other friends and the thing just grew.  Now, 4 years after the first "official" LaborFest, almost 400 people come out to enjoy the last Sunday night partying without fear of work the next morning.

There are two picnic table sized BBQs grilling steak, chicken hot dogs and sausages.  The "Fun Time Orchestra" plays German polka music.  And LaborFest Man was wandering around making sure no one was participating in any kind of labor what so ever.

We got to the party at about 5pm.  Paid our entrance fee and started in on the all-you-can-drink beer.  After an hour we had located the folks that invited us and found a seat for dinner.  At 6pm the meal was served.  Everything was great.  I had steak, chicken and sausage not to mention potato salad (homemade) and pasta salad.  After dinner the band came back on and there was some dancing.  I caught up with one of the original LaborFest-ers who said that if we stuck around late enough there would be some beer pong played.  He also hinted at a game that combines the skills of flip cup and beer pong into one game, called "flip-pong."  I will have to investigate that further.

I hope everyone had a wonderful lazy Labor Day void of any kind of labor.  Stay tuned for more posts.