Dog Days of Summer

Florence and the Machine can certainly carry a tune but this Summer, they have it all wrong. The Dog Days are NOT over. We’ve had some record breaking temperatures already and there’s still time left for the hot vacationing season to blaze us some more. There are several ways to beat the heat and the Main Street Inn experimented with a fun one in a previous blog post. Did you have a chance to create popsicles of your own?

To be real with you folks for a second, the phrase” Dog Days” actually comes from an ancient belief that Sirius, also called the Dog Star, was closer to the sun and responsible for the hotter weather. Dog Days were believed to be an evil time when the sea boiled, the wine turned sour, dogs grew mad, and all other creatures became lazy.

I can certainly vouch for the lazy claim. This humid weather often urges me to post up in any sort of air conditioned vessel and melt into a comfortable blob, not unlike every kids’ ice cream on the streets outside. If you know the feeling, then imagine if you were covered in fur. I’m not talking about a science experiment gone wrong. I’m suggesting you think about your pets! Those furry friends attract and absorb more heat than my dad’s gorilla-like chest. Bad visual? Sorry, but I wanted a dramatic effect.

When you think about it, they call it dog days for a reason. A heat so terrible it could render your dog mad?! Nobody wants that so I suggest keeping your dog (or any pet for that matter) safe, sound and soothingly cool.

There are a variety of ways to do so and most of it is common sense like making sure their water is full and cold. If they’re outside, put them in the shade. Besides the norm, there are other ways to treat your dog. Think beyond the biscuit, beyond the doggie treat and beyond the good tummy rub. Why not consider taking them to an event?

Since it pains all of us dog lovers at the Main Street Inn to say your dogs aren’t permitted here, we felt the need to make up for it. We went ahead and did the research so when you return home from the Inn, no matter where home is, you can treat your puppy to a unique experience after being away. We lined up a few of our favorites, using as much geographical variety as possible, but the website, Bringfido.com, offers a world of options. Literally. It’s worldwide. So if you’re one of our international travelers reading this, dive in as well!

1. Treasure Island Flea – San Francisco, CA

2. Open Air Market – Austin, TX

3. NYC Dog Hiking – New York City, NY

4. Somerville Dog Festival – Somerville, MA

5. 19th Annual Canine Fun Days & Greyhound Reunion – Cleveland, OH

6. Denver Pet Expo – Denver, CO

7. Stratford Animal Rescue Society Fall Festival – Stratford, CT

8. The Bow Wow Bash – Portland, OR

9. Yappy Hour at Quiet Waters Dog Park – Annapolis, MD

10. Dog Days of Summer – Phoenixville, PA

11. Pup”Paw”Looza – Telford, PA

12. Ties and Tails Gala – Charlotte, NC

13. Pack Walk in the Park – Hollywood, FL

14. 5th Annual Pet Festival – Ann Arbor, MI

15. Woofstock 2012 Animal Adoption & Music Festival – Tacoma, WA

16. Hounds for Hope Walk – San Diego, CA

17. Camp Dogwood – Chicago, IL

18. Paws in the Park – Atlanta, GA

19. 4 Paw “Dogs Days of Summer” Anniversary Event – Spartanburg, SC

20. Paws for Cancer – Lakewood, NJ

 

More!

 

Until Next Time,

Pooch Party Purveyor

Where Did All The Genuine Go?

The Fourth of July was smack dab in the middle of the week this year. For those of us who had to work, it almost didn’t feel like a holiday. We went about our usual routines, watching the clock in hopes that our evening plans would somehow arrive sooner than later. My particular plans involved a quick trip to the Kutztown Folk Festival followed by a party.

I decided to bring a cucumber and tomato salad made with dill and apple cider vinegar, a recipe that I slightly altered from the Manifest Vegan‘s new cookbook, Great Gluten Free Vegan Eats. Contrary to common belief, the book is awesome whether you’re gluten-free/vegan or not!

Anyway, as my mother Pam taught me, I prepared my salad fit to feed an army. This time the troops were present. However, those troops all brought food of their own. There were over 50 people and I only knew one so we awkwardly strolled in. After finding her familiar face and then finding a spot for my oversized bowl, I was able to get a “feel” for the new environment, new people and new sounds.

Turned out this was a legitimate block party (I may or may not have thought that was just a cool name for a hip, new party theme). It was two neighbors who asked the borough if they could shut down the street and have a joint party. Road blocks were acquired and the rest was history. Not just any July 4th history, though. This party took me way back. There was a nostalgic feeling floating amongst the different age groups, from 8 to 80. This comforting ambience blew past the table of Summer salads and the old aluminum webbed lawn chairs huddled together in the only remaining shade. It breezed through the lawn games of bocce and horse shoes, resting only upon the various lighthearted conversations when the live music stopped.

The best way to describe how surreal this party felt is by asking you to recall a distinct memory from childhood. This July 4th moment was weird because I knew it was one of those memories in the making. I knew that every young kid running around through the sprinkler and drinking Soda Pop would always remember it. I knew they would remember that particular moment forever because it was so genuine.

Then it got me thinking, genuinely great parties are few and far between anymore. Today there is always a catch, a theme, a gimmick that better intrigue people to come or you’ll be partying alone. I think we should get back to the old way. Throw a party to gather the people you love and have a good time; just to have a party.

The Main Street Inn has been working the “genuine” angle since opening and will continue to do so with our new events. We even know a few basic key ingredients that might help you do the same. Here they are!

Keep it Genuine, Keep it Kutztown

  1. Live music
    1. Don’t get wrapped up in the ever changing playlist scene. If you’re throwing a shin dig, try to find a local band or a friend of a friend who can play a few mellow tunes. Maybe even rock the “open music” night, welcoming any guests who know how to strum to bring their guitar.
  1. Lots of Food
    1. As far as the Corrado’s and The Main Street Inn are concerned, there is no such thing as too much food. For a big event, have everyone bring something or two things and if it doesn’t get finished they can take it home. Less work put on one person and less wasting! Take out boxes are a nice touch here to minimize waste as well!
  1. Casual Seating
    1. Don’t worry about all the chairs matching and each table being surrounded by the perfect amount of chairs. Space out your seating options and keep them casual, especially during a back yard Summer BBQ. Lay a blanket here, few lawn chairs there and voila, a naturally flowing event.
  1. Various Age Groups
    1. Different age groups bring different energies to the table. There is a certain chemistry from varying individuals that produces a genuine bond among company. From my point of view at events like this, the elders have the best stories and experience and the children are always happy.
  1. No Worries
    1. This ingredient to a genuine celebration almost contradicts all the previous ones. It in no way says that the Main Street Inn throws caution to the wind when planning an event. It’s more so a way of saying, we have the answer to everything. No matter what is lacking, there is a way to make it better and the world won’t end in doing so!

We capped the list off at 5 but some classic adult beverages are always welcome as well! There you have it. Get cracking at your genuine, yester-year party or call the Main Street Inn to start planning one with us!

 

Until Next Time,

Blast from the Past Partier

Friend Fest 2012

Picture a small college town, fairly quiet on a cold February night. Then zoom in on that small town to the fairgrounds, where during a week in the summer, it is buzzing with people and entertainment.  Those fairgrounds lay dormant for the winter time with not so much as a row of school buses lining the paved pathways.  Now zoom in towards the permanent structure that typically houses the quilts for display during the folk festival and imagine that building bustling with young people tasting beer and wine from all over the country, talking with friends, and dancing to two of the best local bands- The Wallace Brothers Band and Frog Hollar.  Now that’s what we call a great Saturday night in good ole Kutztown.

Friend Fest is sponsored by a local non-profit organization, Friend Inc. They are a wonderful group that helps individuals and families in need in Northeastern Berks County.  They provide many different services including support groups, counseling, interventions, and a food pantry.  Friend Inc. has several fundraising events throughout the year including an auction, Bowlathon, Brake the Cycle of Poverty Bike Ride, and this year’s 4th annual Friend Fest.

Friend Fest is a wonderful event and fundraiser where many locals purchase tickets that give them access to tasting over 20 different wineries and breweries from across the country.  This year’s annual event was expanded to three separate tasting sessions to accommodate the growing interest among the community.  We here at the inn attended the last session, 7-9:30, and had a ball socializing, drinking, and dancing the night away.  A few of our favorites were the Oatmeal Stout from Vermont’s Wolaver’s Organic Brewing and their Wildflower Wheat, Sly Fox’s Lager, Paradox Vineyard’s warm spiced wine, and the University Wine Company’s U-Freeze wine slushies.

The three of us ladies here at the Inn really enjoyed ourselves (because most of you know how much we all like our wine).  Overall it was a really wonderful event for a great cause.  It’s always nice to see the community out supporting a local organization and we hope that next year’s event is just as successful.