Have a Spring Fling Apr. 19 at “Traverse City’s Coolest Happy Hour”

Gathering the spring harvest of beach glass along West Bay
Gathering the spring harvest of beach glass along West Bay

By MIKE NORTON

At last! After a balmy weekend  and a couple of generous spring thunderstorms, the flowers are popping out all over, the birds are singing, and life in The Teece is good! I’m getting my bike out of the garage tonight and making sure it’s tuned up for the season. Next come the patio chairs and the grill!

I notice that the folks from the National Cherry Festival seem to be in the same mood. Although the main Festival is still months away, they’re welcoming spring next week with the second annual Global Wine Warm-Up, a preview of the popular Global Wine Pavilion that attracted over 1,500 wine and food fans at last year’s Cherry Festival.

The event, which is being billed as “Traverse City’s Coolest Happy Hour,” is scheduled for Tuesday, Apr. 19 from 5 to 9 p.m. in the Century 21 Northland parking lot on the corner of State and Park streets (just across from the Park Place Hotel). It will feature an eclectic international wine bar of some 30 different labels selected by Master Sommelier Ron Edwards (who’ll be on hand to discuss his picks) as well as a selection of craft brews.

Tasting at the Cherry festival's summer Global Wine Pavilion
Tasting at the Cherry festival’s summer Global Wine Pavilion

And since good drink requires good food, the creative team at The Cook’s House will be preparing “a few delicious dishes,” including hors d’oeuvres of Olive tapenade, 9 Bean Rows Baguette, Fromage Blanc, and Gemolata. Risotto with Braised Lamb and Figs; Tart with Potato, Apple, and Caramelized Onions; and Raclette on Puff Pastry. There’ll also be a General Cigar tent showcasing Macanudo and Partagas cigars, and fine jazz provided by Ron Getz.

The best part, though, is the price. A lot of these foodie events are downright expensive, but this one is a steal. For $12.95, you get a Stolzle wine glass, a plate of hors d’oeuvres, and a first glass of wine – and it’s only $10 if you register early at http://visit.cherryfestival.org/global-wine-warm-up (Additional food and drink tickets will be available for $3 each.)

Want to learn more? You can even scope out the wine list and the menu at http://visit.cherryfestival.org/featured-wines-1 and  http://visit.cherryfestival.org/featured-menu

Man, I love living here!

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About mikelovestc

These days, I’m the media relations guy for the Traverse City Convention & Visitors Bureau, but before that I spent 25 years as a reporter and columnist at the Traverse City Record-Eagle, a job that frequently took me out into the most remote backroads, forests, beaches and islands of the beautiful Grand Traverse Region. My strategy was pretty simple — just drive, paddle, ski or walk until you’re certain you’re lost, and then find somebody to talk to. It was a great job! I never intended to live in Traverse City. I grew up in Grand Rapids, spent four years in the Coast Guard in places like Miami Beach, Monterey and San Francisco, and when I finally graduated from college I took a summer job at the Miami Herald. To my surprise, I discovered I didn’t like the tropics nearly as much as I thought I would — and when the Record-Eagle offered me a job I took it, figuring I’d put in a year or two and head off to someplace like Seattle or Portland. What I discovered very quickly is that this place gets to you in a variety of unexpected ways. The beaches here are as lovely as anyplace else I’ve ever been, the weather is mild all year round — warm enough for swimming in September and cold enough for skiing in December — and just about the time you’re getting tired of one season you get another one every bit as pleasant. The people are laid-back and friendly, the music and arts scene is awesome, and the place still hasn’t gotten so sophisticated that a guy like me feels out of place.
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