Friday, July 21, 2006

Food avaialble at the Gilroy Garlic festival

July 28-30, 2006Gourmet Alley
Calamari Stuffed MushroomsItalian Sausage SandwichPeppersteak SandwichGarlic BreadGarlic Ginger Chicken Stir-FryScampiPenne Pasta Con Pesto

"Throughout Christmas Hill Park: ... Escargot & Marinated MushroomsOysters on the Half Shell Cajun Crawdads Blackened Shrimp & Rice Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya Cajun Fried Catfish Gourmet Garlic Fries BBQ Ribs & Turkey Drums Guacamole with Chips Garlic Ice Cream Ravioli with Garlic Basil Sauce Garlic Jelly Key Lime Calamari Shrimp Quesadillas Garlic Poppers Garlic Veggie Wrap Bruschetta Garlic Frog Legs Fresh Vegetables with Garlic Sauce Garlic Chicken Wings Garlic Chocolate Garlic Kettlekorn French Fried Garlic Artichoke Hearts Garlic Chicken Pizza Garlic Rosemary Chicken Sandwich Rattlesnake, Buffalo, Kangaroo or Wild Boar on a Stick

GILROY, California--- Micki Pirozzoli's great grandfather didn't have cell phones, the internet or satellite TV when his family moved here in 1868, but the President of the 2006 Gilroy Garlic Festival Association wonders more about the sense of community he experienced in that time.Each July, Gilroy hosts the world famous Garlic Festival, a food and entertainment extravaganza recognized internationally as a model of citizenry working as one to improve their environment.The 28th annual Festival is slated for July 28-30, 2006 at Christmas Hill Park and will entertain an anticipated throng of 130,000 visitors from throughout the world.In 27 years the Festival has hosted 3.2 million visitors and raised over $7.2 million for local non-profit organizations through an innovative volunteer equity program."The Festival brings us together as a community in a spirit which remains indescribable," said Ms. Pirozzoli, a native Gilroyan and great granddaughter of William Cullen . "It's a year round strength that manifests itself each July.""In October you'll run into a fellow volunteer shopping for a specific item they'll need for the next Festival, then you might not see them again until you cross paths in arts and crafts or the children's area."Over 4,000 volunteers comprise the 33 committees that operate the Festival. "Annually the challenge is to make it bigger and better??..but don't change anything," Mrs. Pirozzoli warned. "It's a very fine line." The 28th annual Festival will maintain its traditional sights, sounds and smells but include some fresh spice. The most anticipated new element of 2006 will be the availability of advance ticket purchasing on the Festival website"We're elated to finally offer this service," Mrs. Pirozzoli admitted. "We expect this feature to significantly alter the walk up crush at the ticket booths'."Three stages will feature 42 live concerts over the three days of the Festival with fast-rising country recording artist Gary Nichols performing on the Vineyard Stage at 11:45 a.m. on July 29. The musical fare is renowned for its wide range of performers that include '50s and '60s rock 'n roll, Latin Salsa big band, jazz, belly dancing and zydeco.Other amusement and entertainment opportunities include arts and crafts vendors and an award-winning children's area. Lots of things to do????..when you're not eating. Festival visitors will consume over 20,000 pounds of beef, 8,000 pounds of scampi and 8,000 pounds of pasta among delicacies enhanced by over four tons of fresh Christopher Ranch garlic that comprise an unmatched 72 hour bill of fare.World famous Gourmet Alley -- which will broadcast a continuous live webcam on the internet at throughout the Festival -- will feature pyrochefs grilling scampi, calamari and other delights with their spectacular flameups.The Gourmet Alley chefs will reveal the secrets to their creations in hourly cooking seminars on the Gourmet Alley Demonstration Stage presented by Washington Mutual. Shows will run daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Washington Mutual will distribute pre-printed recipe cards featuring selected favorites.The Great Garlic Cook-Off, a competition of eight finalists from hundreds of international entries, will begin on the Cook-Off Stage at 9 a.m. July 29 with a scheduled 12:30 p.m. conclusion. The 2005 Cook-Off Champion was Mary Beth Harris-Murphree of Tyler, TX who created Basil and Garlic-Stuffed Sea Scallops Wrapped in Prosciutto and served with a Spicy Citrus Beurre Blanc. The Festival Cook -Off committee has again aligned with popular Mama Mia's Ristorante Italiano to add the winning entrée to its menu at all four south bay locations beginning August 5.The 2006 Gilroy Garlic Festival will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. July 28-30 at Christmas Hill Park in Gilroy. Admission is $12 for adults, $6 for seniors (age 60-plus) and $6 for children age 6-12. Children under age 6 are admitted free.Advance tickets are available online at sponsored and Golf Tournament to help send kids to school. This was the sign they place at the 8th Hole, by the way, my team came in first place so we ended up with a very nice trophy! Ignore the white socks "there's nothing to see here" keep moving

Thursday, July 20, 2006

This is a review that will probably fall on deaf ear?s, in other words before the spiders can add this article to the worldwide web, the Holiday Inn in Anaheim, California will be closed and turned over to new owners?. With that in mind, I hope the future owners take time to read this review, my experience at this Holiday Inn was an incredible, bizarre experience, and I hope the new owners, of what will soon no longer be a Holiday Inn, fix the incredibly inept service issues when they convert the building to another hotel
Ok, let?s start from the beginning, we checked in around 9.30 pm on Friday July 14th we were given room 310, which was suppose to be the ?Kid?s Suite? (a room which was decorated with cartoon characters, offered free video games and DVDs for the kids to keep them entertained, (so us parents can get some much needed down time). We had at least 10 pieces of luggage, (one piece belonged to me) we grabbed a luggage cart and headed to the room, only to find out that the door key was not working, so I left Carmen and my two daughters ages 2 and 9 outside the room while I got the card re-activated. I soon returned and this time the key worked, so imagine my surprise when I opened the door, only to find someone else?s luggage in the room and the room a total mess. I quickly slammed the door shut and headed back to the front desk. Ok, by now I am a little annoyed, not only did they give us a room on the other side of the complex; I had to make two trips in an attempt to fix the problem.
When I arrive at the front desk one of the supervisors looked dumbfounded when I told him my room was already occupied, he checked again and mumbled something about a housekeeping error. So I asked what does a house keeping error have to do with my room being used by someone else? The last time I checked, housekeeping was not in the room issuing business?? To make a long story short, we were not going to get the ?kids suite? instead we were offered a standard room at a reduced rate, during this whole event, I try to maintain a little composure, I frown on things like my room not being ready, or not being available, so I asked, do you have any other suites available? To my surprise he said yes, ?we have the family suite? Let me explain the difference between the ?kids suite? and the ?family suite,? the kids suite is not a suite at all, in fact, what the hotel did was take a standard room, put a partition to separate the regular bed, add bunk beds, a second TV with a special Playstation that apparently can only be played in the kids suite. The family suite is nothing like the kids suite, it came complete with a 50 inch projection television, a full living room set, a full kitchen, two queen size beds and a very large Jacuzzi tub, this tub was so large you could park a Volkswagen in it. So I should be happy, since I was just upgraded to MEGA SUITE. We, I mean I, accepted the upgraded and were told someone would come up to connect the Playstation, no one ever did. Finally I called down to the front desk, only to be told, ?you can only use the video game controller in the kid?s suite, if I wanted kids to play video games I would have to pay for them??.. Oh, and I was informed that they fixed the housekeeping error and magically a kids suite room had just opened up. (This is after we unpacked our luggage and put the kids in their PJ?s around 11:30pm). We had a Disneyland adventure planned for the next morning so changing rooms at this point was not an option.
And then to add insult to injury, we requested a late checkout with the front desk, which means we would be leaving 1pm instead of 12 pm on July 16. However around 10am on the 16th day there was a knock on the door, (yes, we hung the do not disturb sign) it was housekeeping, (I guess they really do run the place) asking us when do we plan on checking out of the room, Hello it?s 10 o?clock in the morning, why in gods name are they pounding on my door to see when we were leaving It not like we got the room for free, and besides regular check out is not till 12pm at the earliest. We packed our stuff and split at 11:30 I needed to leave that place before something bad happens you know when SWAT arrives and yells at you through a bull horn asking you to come out with your hands up!
If I had to return to Anaheim again in the next couple weeks I would never use that Holiday Inn again. It too bad such a nice looking hotel has so many service issues. On a final note I do want to thank the assistant general manager Rick who took time to show me the kid?s suite for this article, good luck on your new venture!

Monday, July 17, 2006

and the Tortuga Trio of Creme Brulee!

Three dessert dishes offered at the Blue Bayou cafe in Disney Land I hope to get better photos from the Media department at Disney and I thank them for thier hospitality. The first dish if the Key West Key Lime Pie... and The Flying Dutchman Cookie Boat .