Feast With The Beast 2017-Our Annual Date Night Out

Every year we attend the Feast With The Beast event here at our local zoo and it never leaves us hungry for sure. Plus, every year it seems to grow in the number of people that join us which makes it all the more fun.

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This year our son joined in the festivities for the first time, my brother joined us for the second year in a row, and my husband has co workers/friends that also make the trip into the big city (as they say, since all of them are from the Algoma/Sturgeon Bay area) to join in the fun also. Here is half our group enjoying the BBQ ribs.

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This years event offered 45 stations total, all offering samples from their menus, drinks and/or both. I tried my first ever martini apparently, according to this recipe card that was being handed out at this sampling table. For me the tropical mango was absolutely fantastic!!!! That is until I had to “sample” a few more glasses to make sure this was the one that won the taste sampling. Believe me, the next morning I was not so happy with myself for over indulging. Ahhhh, we all learn this lesson at some time in life right?

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Some places offer one menu item to sample and some offer as many as three different menu items at a time. Needless to say, we never ever try everything since we never ever have made it completely around the entire zoo without filling up before the end.

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As we have found every year that we have attended this event they add new restaurants from the area and some pull out and do not take part in the festivities.

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Even though this is mostly an adult event and the zoo is closed down to the general public, there are children that do tag along with some parents. Keep in mind that no matter what age your child is they all need a ticket which go for $35 per person before the event and $40 the night of the event. So if your child cannot eat/drink $35 worth of food….a sitter may be your best bet for probably the same amount of money.

We ultimately had a wonderful time. We all agreed to meet again next year, same time and same place. We are already looking forward to a great night out, with wonderful food/drink with a fun group of friends.

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Read about past years here  and here  if you missed it.

 

 

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N.E.W. Zoo Feast With The Beast 2016…..Another Fun Filled Year of Food, Friends and Fun

We had another fun filled year at the N.E.W. Zoo Feast With The Beast.

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We have attended this yearly event for the past several years now and it just gets more enjoyable every year. This year my brother, another couple, and a person my husband works with along with his son in law and his grandson joined us. And let me tell you….we all left in a food coma!

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From BBQ ribs, which is always our first restaurant table to stop at,

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to fancier wonton lime shrimp cups….you can never say there was not enough food offered during this event. IMG_5118

Many of the featured restaurants offer one or more food samples and often also add in a specialty brew. There were numerous breweries throughout the event along with wine and margaritas thrown in just incase your not a beer drinker….like myself.

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And if you need a break in between samples, you can also enjoy the live music IMG_5130

or view the animals who are enjoying the extra attention they receive by all the event goers.

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This year ended up being just wonderful. Another great job was done by the event planners, zoo staff and of course Mother Nature for giving us perfect weather to enjoy the evening.

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Feast With The Beast 2015 Recap

Every year for about the past 5 years or so we have an annual date night. A local zoo closes down to the public and hosts Feast With The Beast where area restaurants set up tables and hand out samples from their menus.

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Upon arrival you receive a map of the zoo telling you where each restaurant is located and what their featured sample(s) are. I wish I could tell you we have a strategy but honestly, we don’t. There is so much food, wine, and beer that no matter where you begin and end you will leave completely full.

IMG_1886The trickiest part of the entire night is holding your plate, eating, and walking all at the same time. Many of the sample tables are set up very close together and the lines move very quickly. So typically, unless you find a spot to put down your plate and enjoy one sample, you find yourself in line for the next before the first is even gone.  IMG_1879

This year there were 47 tables/restaurants offering a sample….many offered two! Some are fancy, newer restaurants in the area

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and some were well known restaurants serving just some signature dishes.

IMG_1890 IMG_1884 When you find yourself starting to fill up, don’t forget to walk around and enjoy the actual zoo experience while your there. Many of the animals were begging for a taste of what we all had in our hands. I even felt bad for a few, but not bad enough to share anything I had.  IMG_1899

You could also sit and listen to the live music and take a break and then go back to your favorites if you still have the room for a second helping.

IMG_1907For $35 a ticket you can enjoy two hours in a great outdoor setting, eating some fabulous food, try new drinks, all while listening to the very funny comments as guests leave with VERY FULL STOMACHS.  IMG_1896  IMG_1902

My husband swore he was going to have stretch marks on the drive home. HAHAHA. And I over heard another gentleman state that he felt like he was in his third trimester while rubbing his stomach. (If only he knew the truth about what that felt like) So be careful, an event like this could cause some very uncomfortable hours if you over indulge a little too much.

Have you ever gone to an event like this?

Did you like it?

Feast with the Beast 2014

We attended an annual event in our area that we have come to love. Feast with the Beast 2014 was Monday night and we had a terrific time. This is a zoological fundraiser where area restaurants are set up around the N.E.W. Zoo and offer samples of some of their best dishes.

Being the foodie I am, this is quite the event for me. I love tasting new and interesting recipes and this is the perfect place to do it. My husband, on the other hand, just likes to eat which also makes this his perfect atmosphere. The zoo itself is closed down and only ticket holders are able to attend this special event. We had the pleasure of attending this year with a friend my husband works with and his wife. This was their first time and I do believe they left pretty happy (and it has nothing to do with all the sangria we tasted).

Let’s talk about the food, shall we? There were a total of 44 food tasting tables. They had everything and anything you could think of to sample. To list a few, we had ribs and corn on the cob,

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roast pork with pancetta apple ragout and tavern chips with some type of yummy sauce and berry drizzle,

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and citrus crab in a cucumber cup.

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As you move through the zoo they also have local beer vendors with all their specialty brews along with wine tastings from local wineries. We spent our fair share of time tasting at these tables (ok, I’ll admit, us wives had fun at the wine tables). And then we came across a table that was sampling flavored vodka. This made me smile because a few weeks ago I visited Door County with some girl friends and we were all so excited to finally get there to wine and vodka taste only to find out you had to pay to do the vodka tasting. We then opted out and stuck with the wine tasting. So, here was my opportunity and I was not going to pass it up. They offered strawberry and peach vodka mixed with juice  or lemonade. The strawberry lemonade was good but the peach vodka mixed 50/50 with cranberry and orange juice was out of this world. I can’t wait to try this at home:)

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By the time we made it to the other side of the zoo I was beyond full!!! My husband and his friend were still going strong so we finished the food tables while enjoying the live entertainment.

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Then it was time to back track to a few favorites (ribs for the guys and sangria and vodka for the women) and walk off some calories at the same time. This is when we started to actually notice the zoo animals.

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It was a two hour event that offers great food, a nice walk, and a fun atmosphere. We consider this our annual date night every year and look forward to it all year long. This means I accomplished one of my August goals, met a fun couple, and found a few new restaurants we plan to try in the near future.

 

 

 

 

 

July Goals

I feel as if summer is just flying by so quickly. Which is why I decided to make a list of goals for July. My hope is to make sure I get at least some of these things accomplished before this month is over.

Not a single thing on my list is related to work, home improvement, or honestly a chore. It’s all mainly fun things, health related things or things that just need to be done before we run out of summer. The way I see it, I can do work, home improvements and chores all winter long.

My July Goals:

1. Get out on my SUP as much as possible

In the past summers we have either kayaked more or had vehicle issues that I was not able to spend as much time as I would have preferred on my SUP. Not this year….we made a car top carrier purchase back in March and it was the best buy we made this year. Now I can go with either vehicle whenever I wish.

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2. Get rid of the tan line that circles around my ankles from my kayaking shoes!!!!

Normally this would not bother me in the least bit, BUT, some friends of ours are getting married in a few weeks and it is not going to look so nice in the sandals I plan to wear. So I figure I better at least try and even this out somewhat before then.

3. Have a Mom’s Day Off 🙂

Since my own son is 19 yrs old I don’t consider myself a full time mom anymore. I hold more of a part time status in this matter. So really this is just a day off of being a mom, wife and a childcare provider. I already have it planned, our destination is chosen, and the women I plan to go with is also arranged. Now we all just have to not let life happen and have it be cancelled for some reason or another. Here’s to hoping and we have a great time.

4. Date night with my husband

What can I say, we spend a lot of time together but never really on a date. We should make this a priority but we don’t. After 20 years of marriage, date nights are kind of over rated. However, it is my turn to plan our date night and what I want to do on this particular night is super exciting and I can’t wait to try it. He was the one that got to plan the last date night and it ended with me riding a roller coaster which I will never do again.  Now we just need to pick a night and make it happen.

5. Try 2 new recipes

Summer time is the worse time of year for me to cook. If I had a backyard outdoor kitchen it may be different but I don’t. So this goal will be hard to do but may be possible if it rains two days in the month of July.

6. Defunk our kayak equipment

I know I said no chores but this one is really super easy and will only take a few minutes. If you are a kayaker you will know what I mean by DEFUNK! Kayaking gear can get pretty smelly and it literally takes seconds to fill up a tub with enzyme solution, dip each piece of equipment and hang to dry. I try and do this at least once or twice during the summer and then a final time before storing the equipment for the winter.

7. Try a new restaurant

We have a few new restaurants in the area and we always seem to venture back to our normal favorites. We really need to broaden our horizons and try some new places.

So there is the list. Nothing too elaborate or difficult to achieve. Ha, I say that now but I know I will struggle with a few of these. I am hoping that by making a list it will help me feel a little more accountable. We’ll see….either way, let’s all hope for a great, bright, and sunny month of July and have some fun 🙂

What is one goal you hope to achieve in the month of July?