Wings N Things: My Favorite Meal

Just a little visual to help you start salivating. For the record, these are not from Wings N Things.
Photo: Elkeflorida via BigStock

Note: Recently, I was assigned the task of writing about my favorite meal for a course I am taking. I was so hungry when I finished, I thought I would share.

My favorite meal consists of buffalo chicken wings with curly fries, carrot and celery sticks with ranch dressing, fried cheese cubes with cherry mustard sauce, and a nice cold beer of some imported variety.

If you’ve never tried this particular combination of healthy foods (and yes, I jest here about the healthfulness of this meal), you’re missing out one of the most delectable sensations of taste to ever cross the human palate. In particular, this meal should be enjoyed at a fine establishment (hint: it’s a dive) called “Wings N Things” on Cortez Road West, en route from the city of Bradenton, Florida to the sleepy fishing village known as Cortez.

Note: Yes, there’s another Wings N Things location (on Tallevast at Lockwood Ridge). And yes, I also enjoy that location—especially for its convenience. However, as both locations are no longer under their original ownership, I feel like the Cortez location’s owners have generally stayed more consistent with the practices of the founder. To some, that’s a positive. To others, it’s a strike against it. If it were closer, I’d probably eat at the Cortez location more often, but in practice, I find myself at Tallevast more often.

The reason this restaurant, in particular, should be chosen is that it serves, in my not-so-humble opinion, the quintessential flavor for the sauce that makes fried drumettes and wings qualify for the moniker, “buffalo.” While it’s available in milder forms (e.g. mild, medium, hot, and “TNT”), I recommend that you select the setting with the most “heat.” It’s a wonderful delicacy the founder of this restaurant named, “Napalm.”

Sandy, as she was known, must have been attempting to call to mind the burning sensation elicited by this bizarre substance used in chemical warfare (if that is indeed the correct term for it) as portions of the jungles of Southeast Asia were engulfed in flames during the Viet Nam conflict.

When the portions of fried yardbird are served to you as a patron, they appear on the table in a plastic boat lined with aluminum foil. Pooled in the bottom is a generous helping of this orange, aqueous substance, which has also been lavishly applied to the sticky exterior surfaces of the chicken pieces. Introduced into your mouth, the sauce ignites a veritable firestorm of flavors… simultaneously sweet, salty, vinegary, and — perhaps most importantly — hot. The heat comes from the particular combination of the peppers (mostly cayenne, but undoubtedly comprised of a selection of others which remain the secret of the proprietors) and the vinegar.

The effect is so remarkable that caution is to be advised when breathing the air above the meal because the heat from the freshly fried meat causes the pepper-infused vinegar fumes to become nearly noxious. Coughing and sputtering is normal for those neophytes who fail to recognize this.

In order to be properly enjoyed, the curly fries — long cut and fried to a crisp — should be doused in white vinegar and then heavily salted. The flavor of this accoutrement perfectly complements that of the poultry.

The celery and carrot sticks add an air, slight as it may be, of healthfulness to the meal. The fact that vegetables are being consumed with this fried fiesta is just enough to salve the conscience of the eater. Dipping the sticks in the small plastic containers of ranch dressing help round out the flavor profile of the meal.

As if the sensations crossing your taste buds weren’t yet salacious enough to tantalize, the deep-fried cubes of cheese are there to push everything beyond proper limits of enjoyability. Care must be taken to allow for the proper cooling of these little balls (one can only imagine that the cheese had been arranged in a cube shape before being breaded and deep fried) as the cheese — if it’s too hot — will explode into your mouth and sear the flesh thereof, properly ruining your ability to enjoy flavor for the rest of your meal. I must insist that at least some percentage of these little balls of dairy delicacies be dipped into the accompanying cherry mustard sauce. Having never located a similar sauce anywhere else, I can only speculate as to its origins. It doesn’t seem to be mustard-like or even cherry-like at all. Rather, it is a liquid with a mild reddish color that adds a nice spark of sweet flavor to the whole experience.

Of course, you may choose to wash all of this down with the beverage of your choice. For many years, this establishment served Pepsi products. Thus, a Mountain Dew was the imbibement of choice for those looking to add a non-alcoholic kick to the meal. Once the switch to Coca-Cola products was made, the only logical choice was an imported beer of some sort. I usually find the darkest option available, as I find it pairs best with the rest of the meal.

As my salivary glands are now working overtime just from the writing of this short essay, I feel compelled to submit my response and drive to this establishment post haste.

Steve Rinehart: Sarasota’s Newest Custom Home Builder

Those of you who know me well already know this: I’m a huge fan of entrepreneurs.

Especially the “chase your dream, innovate and adapt as necessary, and work really hard ’til you see it come about” variety.

Steve Rinehart: Sarasota Entrepreneur
Photo Courtesy of Rinehart Homes

And this is precisely why I was intrigued when I first met Steve Rinehart. It was about two and a half years ago now, and a good friend of mine was providing some entertainment in a local night club venue. He suggested that I meet up with the owner, because he had real vision but had run into some difficulties in the business.

The venue was “The Loft Ristobar,” and it was located in the building that had previously housed Sarasota’s highly popular Tex-Mex chain restaurant, Don Pablo’s.

The Loft was a concept that was either ahead of its time, or perhaps just better suited to a bigger market. But the idea, I thought, was brilliant. Restaurant by day, live entertainment venue in the evenings, and then… after hours on weekends, it transformed into a full-on night club.

But, as you might imagine, those are at least two (and possibly three) different businesses all rolled up into one. This meant that the business was surprisingly complex, with lots of areas that needed specific attention.

Creating a clear marketing message out of the three of them was what I was immediately tasked with doing. Let’s just say it wasn’t the easiest thing I’ve ever been asked to do.

And to top it all off, Rinehart Homes, Steve Rinehart’s day job, was busy and complicated enough that it demanded lots of his time and most of his attention. The management Steve had in place at The Loft did a bang-up job, but it just wasn’t enough to get the concept to really take off.

Why Not Franchise?

As Steve related to me, many times during the course of his time operating The Loft Ristobar, people would come in and ask about Don Pablo’s. Where did it go? What happened to it?

The reality was that the Sarasota store had long been one of the chain’s top-performing restaurants. But when the parent corporation ran into financial troubles, it closed all but 38 stores—the ones that were geographically easier for them to manage. A new company bought the brand and those 38 stores out of bankruptcy and they were doing OK.

The idea of coming back to Sarasota was a good one, but the company wasn’t ready to take the plunge yet as they were taking a measured approach to growth.

So Steve did what any enterprising entrepreneur would do: he seized the opportunity and negotiated the chain’s first-ever franchise deal. In May of 2012, five years or so after it had closed, Sarasota’s Don Pablo’s reopened as a franchise operation.

That business has been through its fair share of ups and downs, but today it is humming along with a great management team in place. Steve has high hopes for its future.

In the meantime… Sarasota’s real estate market had begun to pick up.

Building Custom Homes in Sarasota

Since 1994, when Steve Rinehart first obtained his Florida General Contractor’s license, he had attacked the home-building business with gusto. Not one to get stuck depending upon others, Steve went out and got his roofing license and a pool contractor’s license as well. This enabled him to be highly flexible and churn out homes at a surprising rate.

The business model is pretty simple in this world: you find a big tract of land and make a deal. Then you carve it up, stick up a model home or two, and build a community.

Steve’s reputation—and that of his boutique team—in that business is very good. Over the years, he and his team have built more than 300 homes that way, and provided many affordably-priced, but very nice homes for a lot of people.

But as he tells it, when the real estate market starts to heat up—especially in an intrinsically attractive market like Sarasota/Bradenton—bigger and bigger national players are willing to come in and pay far more for land than it’s worth.

That makes this business less and less attractive to a boutique team like Steve’s.

And so… the handful of higher-end projects that Steve had taken on in the last few years had started to become more and more interesting.

With a few completely custom projects on Sarasota’s Siesta Key (along with a high-end renovation or two) under his belt, Steve decided it was time to launch another new entrepreneurial venture.

With the help of 20-year veteran real estate investor Joel Match, Steve recently launched Rinehart Elite Homes. Their first project under this new name? A gorgeous home in Lakewood Ranch’s exclusive golf course community, The Concession.

As you might imagine, Steve’s life is never boring. But given his passion for excellence, his hands-on attention to detail, and the track record of satisfied home owners, I think it’s safe to say that Rinehart Elite Homes is going to be a luxury home builder to contend with.

Jane Carroll York

Jane Carroll YorkJuly 20, 1956 – December 17, 2013

Late in the evening of Tuesday, December 17th, my Aunt Jane passed away. That moment represented the peaceful end to a valiant battle against cancer that she waged for the last few months of her life. Her daughter, Rachel, had arrived at her bedside just in time to be with her as she took her last breath… something for which I am very grateful.

Although we weren’t “close” for much of my life due to geographical distance, we had—for the last 5 years or so—spent quite a bit more time together thanks to her move to Florida. It was a great tragedy that precipitated her move here… the untimely loss of her husband, Jim, whom she greatly loved. They had made their home for the better part of their two children’s lives in Katy, Texas, just west of Houston. After Jim passed away in December of 2006, Jane felt drawn to Florida to be near to her parents, Rev. Jack Carroll and Erma Carroll, and to her sister (my Mom), Ann Johnson.

When she relocated to Florida, Jane brought with her my cousin Rachel, who was in her sophomore year of high school at the time. Jane’s eldest, my cousin Jay, was studying and playing football at Azusa Pacific University in the greater Los Angeles area, but we still managed to see him more often than ever during the holidays.

I’m very grateful for these past few years. We were all heartbroken at the loss of Jim… and very grateful for the family’s move to Florida. Countless times during Jane’s recent fight with cancer, whether we sat together at my parents’ house (when they were able to care for her there) or by her bedside in one of the three hospitals where she spent so much time, we remarked about how grateful we were that she moved her family to Florida.

Sadly, the time she spent her with her parents was not long. Within a year and a half of her arrival, we lost her father (my Grandfather). Fifteen months later, her mother (my Grandmother) passed away as well. A few short months later, my cousin, Rachel, left for college in Colorado, where she’s currently studying at the prestigious Colorado School of Mines.

Recently, I’ve thought a lot about that sequence of events… and although she didn’t “lose” her children, she did experience being distanced from them in the midst of losing her husband and her mother and father. I think that’s an awful lot of loss for someone to sustain, and my heart was heavy for her.

But… she was great fun to have around here in recent years. She was regularly to be found at Starbucks, where I would interrupt her coffee and reading when I had the chance. We always saw her at family gatherings for birthdays and holidays. She also went out of her way to invite my wife and daughter and I over to use the pool in her community, and we would often grab takeout and spend the evening with her afterward.

During her funeral service last Saturday at Toale Brothers in downtown Sarasota, Jane was remembered by all for her infectious laugh and for her feisty, vocal nature. She never was one to back down from any spirited debate, and it seemed that there were plenty to be had with her around! She was also fiercely loyal and genuine. She would certainly come to the defense of those she loved, and you really didn’t want to be on the wrong side of her when she did!

In addition to the family members who came to remember her and celebrate her life, some of Jane’s close friends from her neighborhood and from playing tennis were also there at her funeral. She managed to forge some really tight-knit friendships in her five years here in Florida.

I have fond memories of Jane from throughout my life. We briefly lived in the same part of Houston during my childhood, and I remember spending some time with her then. Not long after she met and married Jim, they moved to California. By then, my family had already moved away ourselves, so there were a few years there where we didn’t see them as often.

In addition to being spunky and stubborn (which I’m pretty sure came largely from her Mother), Jane was incredibly smart. This made her a force to be reckoned with. It was a badge of honor for me when I beat her (once) at Trivial Pursuit. I remember that moment like it was yesterday. I couldn’t have been more than 12 at the time, and I’m quite certain it was just because I got lucky with the cards that were drawn, but I was no less proud of it!

When her nose wasn’t in a book, Jane was constantly doing crossword puzzles. She loved music, and I remember my amazement at her CD collection when I was a kid.

Most significantly, though, Jane dove into raising Jay and Rachel with all of her might. She was very involved when they were in music and sports, and probably ruined the day of more than a few educators during her time as a Mom. It wasn’t a good idea to treat one of her kids unfairly, that was for sure!

I’m so proud of both Jay and Rachel today. They have each been shaped by the loss of their Father while in their teens. There’s no question that that was difficult—and I’m sure remains so to this day. But each has carried on and pursued and achieved great things since then. They’ve demonstrated great resolve and fortitude as they stood by their Mom during her battle with cancer over the last few months. I was heartbroken for them as they lost their Mom.

Likewise, my Mom has lost both of her parents and now her only sister. My heart breaks for her as well. The same could be said of her brother, my Uncle Steve.

I know that Jane had a very deep faith that kept her connected with God throughout the ups and downs of her life. She was, it seems, especially made to suffer at the hands of some of the “old school” religious ideas that were handed down early in her life. I don’t have a way to know this with any certainty, but I’m guessing that she spent some time being angry with God (not to mention some people) over some of that. But Jane yearned for freedom, heart and soul. As my wife, Jill, and I prayed with her in recent months—often alongside other family members and close friends—we could see Jane’s heart reaching out to God with everything she had.

As I ponder this, I am especially grateful now for her true freedom. She’s free of all the pain and nastiness that was brought on by cancer. But she’s also truly free in her spirit and soul right now. I can only imagine the reunion as she saw Jim and her parents again.

A graveside service will be held on Saturday, December 28th (tomorrow, as I write this) in Katy, Texas at 2pm (local time). Her body will be laid to rest alongside that of her husband, Jim, at the Katy Magnolia Cemetery. Jay and Rachel will be there, and I’m sure some friends from Jane’s years there in Katy will join them.

I miss you and I love you, Aunt Jane.

Why I’m a Big Fan of Macy’s in Sarasota

Dean Burnside, Owner of Macy’s Pest Control Sarasota

Recently, I sat down for lunch at the newly reopened Don Pablo’s in Sarasota (a habit of mine lately) with Dean Burnside, Owner of Macy’s Termite & Pest Control. Dean and I have become acquainted lately thanks to an introduction from a good friend of mine who thought that the two of us would be like-minded.

It turns out we are. Dean operates his company with a very unique approach—one rooted in principles of business that are entirely Scriptural in nature. In fact, the first time we met, he described their operation as a, “for-profit ministry disguised as a pest control company.”

A quick aside: if you thought I was referring to Macy’s Department Store, my deepest apologies. Actually, I’m a big fan of that Macy’s in Sarasota as well. (Well… both, actually, since they have 2 locations.) I always get great service, and I was thrilled when they brought the famous Macy’s brand to town a few years ago, replacing the native-Floridian Burdines brand.

When it comes to pest control, Sarasota residents have quite a few options. Dean is well aware of this, of course. And in a competitive environment like this one, you might wonder why someone would bother trying to present their company publicly as one that upholds the highest standards of ethics, integrity, honesty and excellence. Businesses are being scrutinized quite enough without the added pressure.

But for Dean, the answer is simple. If his business doesn’t operate with excellence—whether it’s a salesperson who tells the truth or a service technician who delivers on the company’s promises—Dean’s company not only won’t grow and be profitable, but they also won’t have a valid platform to share what Dean calls, the “Good News.”

How Macy’s Termite & Pest Control Got Their Name

You might be wondering how a Sarasota pest control company owned by someone whose name is Burnside got the name Macy’s. Actually it’s a great story. The founder of the company is John Macy, who brought Dean on in the mid-1990s. John naturally lent his surname to the company—long before the other Macy’s came to town—and ultimately sold the company to Dean in about 1998.

Since the business already had a great reputation, Dean saw no need to change the company’s name, and has grown it considerably since then. Several years ago, John Macy showed up at Dean’s doorstep wondering if there was a role for him to play. Sure enough! Macy is now the company’s ambassador, and does lots of networking and assorted goodwill-generating stuff for the business. All these years later, the two make quite a team.

The Macy’s Termite & Pest Control name isn’t without its quirks, however. Dean says he routinely gets calls in November from people looking for tickets to the parade. His staff has the telephone numbers of the local stores handy to give out to people who call the wrong place. There’s even the occasional billing question that lands in their accounting department when people think they’ve already paid their Macy’s bill.

Dean’s a good sport about it, though. It isn’t unusual for the company to give out Macy’s gift cards to employees or as prizes in company promotions.

Under the Hood

Since my team and I are known for Nourish The Dream and the events we conduct around the country related to doing business according to Kingdom principles, Dean opened up his operations to me and allowed me to get a first-hand look at how they run things. As Zig Ziglar says, “What’s in the warehouse needs to match what’s in the showroom.” This is the case with Macy’s Pest Control.

I’m sure they disappoint a customer once in a while, and I have no doubt there are conflicts that arise in their business as in any other. But when you see a commitment to make things right and to really live up to the high standards someone sets, then you know you’re dealing with people of integrity.

An example that comes to mind deals with being a leader in green pest control. Sure… a lot of people are jumping on the environmentally friendly bandwagon, but Dean and his team see this as a lot more than a marketing gimmick.

Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:28 NKJV)

Referencing the above Scripture, Dean will tell you that he sees this commandment and others like it as a mandate from God to take care of the planet. In an industry that makes wide use of chemicals, he sees it as his responsibility to operate with policies and procedures that do as little harm to the environment as possible. And plenty of others have taken notice, including Natural Awakenings, which has awarded Macy’s Pest Control their “Green Business of the Year” award several years running.

Next time you’re in need of a pest control solution in Sarasota, Bradenton, Venice and the surrounding communities, I urge you to give Macy’s a shout. Make sure you let ’em know we sent ya!

Erma L. Carroll

Erma L. Carroll
April 17, 1922 - May 10, 2011

In the early morning hours yesterday, my Grandmother, Erma L. Carroll née Adler, peacefully passed away. She was comfortable, thanks to the wonderful people who cared for her around the clock for nearly the last 2 years of her life. Like her late husband, the Rev. Jack C. Carroll, who preceded her by a little more than 15 months, she was ready to go after a long, fruitful life.

“Mow-Wow” was how I always knew her. The story goes that my brother (who was her first grandchild) invented the moniker for her as a toddler, and it simply stuck. She was a loving, devoted Grandmother to me, who frequently had a mischievous gleam in her eye and was always quick with a remark and a hearty laugh.

But behind the spunky exterior was a quiet strength that was born in her large-family upbringing on a farm in rural Oklahoma. Her German-speaking grandparents left difficult circumstances in Russia and landed in Nebraska. Her parents married and eventually made their way to a new homestead outside of Weatherford, Oklahoma, where they started a family, eventually having 10 children.

The community in Weatherford was a tight-knit, family-oriented one. As it became more & more likely for World War II to impact the United States, she took a job with the War Department in Washington, D.C., which eventually led to her meeting the young Marine who stole her heart. The story goes that she actually dated his friend, but he snagged her. They fell in love and were married in September, 1945, once he returned from the Pacific theater at the end of the war.

They started their life together in Georgia, where he attended college and entered the ministry. She lived the majority of her adult life as a Pastor’s wife, caring for people and contributing her myriad skills to the congregational life and activities in churches across Oklahoma, eventually settling in Denver, Colorado.

Mow-Wow demonstrated a tremendous amount of diligence in her life. Some of my earliest memories of her involve her sitting at the breakfast table in their Littleton, Colorado home, praying for each & every family member by name and poring over the Scriptures. It seemed she was always memorizing passages from her beloved Bible, and if I walked by her, I would frequently hear her “muttering” the Scriptures under her breath. She lived & breathed the Word of God.

She raised 3 incredibly gifted and talented children, one of which thankfully became my Mother. All of her children have tremendous musical abilities, and I’m a grateful beneficiary of the disciplines that were part of her household where music lessons are concerned. Her children are all 3 accomplished pianists and music lovers. We are a very musical family, and I believe in large part we owe it to Mow-Wow’s determination to cultivate those abilities.

I’m grateful for so many experiences with her in my life. As a boy, I learned Scriptures from her and always enjoyed visits to her home. She was a hard-working homemaker, an amazing cook, and a joy to be around… although not without the occasional cantankerous moment. I was so grateful when she & Pa-Po decided to make the move to Florida in 1998 and spend their twilight years here. It has meant that my Mom’s side of the family has spent significant amounts of time together, which I’ve been very blessed to be part of along the way.

Unfortunately, she had a late-night fall 2 years ago, which resulted in a broken femur. The surgery to repair the break was a little hard for her to recover from, and she had a further setback when she had a stroke in the recovery process. My Grandfather had been by her side through her major heart surgery several years prior, and was always strong for her. But after her fall and subsequent stroke, his own health began to decline. He passed away in January, 2010, just a few days shy of his 89th birthday. She lived to reach her own 89th birthday in April of this year, but was tired from her health struggles.

She was greatly loved and will be sorely missed.

A public viewing will be held on Thursday, May 12th, from 6pm-8pm at Brown and Sons Funeral Home, 604 43rd Street West, Bradenton, FL 34209 (map here). A funeral service celebrating the life of Erma L. Carroll will be held on Friday, May 13th at 11am at the same location. She will be interred at the Sarasota National Cemetary at 2:30pm.

Rev. Jack C. Carroll, USMC Ret.

Rev. Jack C. Carroll
January 31, 1921 - January 26, 2010

Yesterday morning, my Grandfather, Rev. Jack C. Carroll, quietly slipped away. He was completely at peace, confident about his eternal future, and having lived a full and complete life. He was in no pain, and from what the folks who were caring for him said, he simply went to sleep.

But far more interesting and important than how his life ended are the many things that filled it. You see, “Pa-Po” (as my brother and the other grandchildren and I knew him) was a man who experienced much and loved much. And through everything, he was a passionately principled and devoted man who set a very high bar for what real manhood is all about.

Many knew him as the preacher who cared for and spoke into the lives of so many people across Oklahoma, Colorado and — long after “retirement” — Florida. Some knew him as the Pearl Harbor survivor who fought for the Freedoms that were so precious and valuable for him. As a U.S. Marine, he continued his service through the end of World War II, fighting for the all-important islands in the South Pacific that were so crucial to the outcome of the Japanese conflict.

I knew him as the fun, thoughtful, generous, and studious Grandfather who impacted my life in more ways than I can count. On visits to their home as a young boy, I watched the habit of morning prayer that he and my Grandmother (“Mow-Wow” — don’t ask me: my brother named them before I was born) engaged in every single day. They read the Scriptures together and prayed for us — their children, grandchildren, and later great-grandchildren — by name.

With Pa-Po, the Word of God and prayer were not merely the accoutrements of his profession. Of all that I received from him, the legacy of his authentic relationship with God is most significant and meaningful to me. I often think of him and I realize that so many of the blessings in my life today are the fruit of his decades-long, consistent daily walk. First ordained under the Christian & Missionary Alliance, he became a Southern Baptist minister and began pastoring in the 1940s. He moved his young family all over the great state of Oklahoma, pastoring churches in cities like Ada, Shawnee, and ultimately: Blackwell. It’s Blackwell that I appreciate so much because it was there that his daughter, Ann, met my father when they were 14.

From Oklahoma, he and Mow-Wow eventually relocated to Denver, Colorado, where they took up residence in Littleton. Some of my fondest memories from childhood are from visits to their house there, where Pa-Po and I laughed and played Uno® together on the porch. On Sundays, we always were in church, where I heard and watched him preach with passion and conviction — always struggling to help people and impact their lives for eternity.

In January, 1986, my parents and my brother and I made the trek from Houston to Denver to surprise Pa-Po as he “retired.” I remember many things from that trip — notably, that I was in the basement of their home watching TV when Dan Rather interrupted to announce the destruction of the Challenger — but what struck me most was the sheer number of people who expressed such genuine heartfelt gratitude to him for his career serving people. What an impact it had on me to see how he had poured his life out for others.

Of course, for him, “retirement” simply meant giving up his comfortable salary at a decent-sized church so he could continue pastoring smaller ones for nearly 2 more decades. Thankfully, in 1998 he and Mow-Wow moved to Bradenton, Florida where he began pastoring yet again. For him, fruitfulness in life was more important than leisure.

There is much to be said about Pa-Po, and I appreciate the opportunity to be a bit indulgent here as I talk about him. His wife, Erma, along with his 3 children — Ann Johnson, Steve Carroll, and Jane York — and their children and grandchildren all miss him sorely.

A funeral service celebrating the life of Jack C. Carroll will be held on Friday, January 29, 2010 at West Bradenton Baptist Church, 1305 43rd Street West, Bradenton, FL 34209. A public viewing will be held at 10am, with the service beginning at 11am. He will be interred at 2pm at Sarasota National Cemetary.

I miss you, Pa-Po.

Special thanks to Grant Jefferies for taking fabulous photos and generously releasing them to the family. Thanks also to Rachel York for Photoshop help.

Sarasota-Bradenton Town Hall Meeting

Advance notice is a beautiful thing, isn’t it? I just got word (via the official e-mail list from his office) that Congressman Vern Buchanan has a Town Hall Meeting planned in Manatee County for tomorrow afternoon. As promised, I’m delivering the details to you here:

When: Thursday, August 20, 2009 at 4PM

Where: Braden River High School, 6545 SR 70 East, Bradenton, FL 34203

Braden River High is very close to the I-75 / SR 70 interchange. Take I-75 to Exit 217 (SR 70), then head West to Caruso Road. The school is on the right (North) side of SR 70, but if I’m not mistaken you need to turn North on Caruso to get to the entrance.

Here’s your map:

View Larger Map

For the record, here’s the text of the official invite:

I would like to invite you to a Town Hall meeting on health care, jobs, and the economy tomorrow, Thursday, in Southeast Manatee County.  As Congress considers health care reform legislation, it also should work to grow the economy and create more jobs.  I want to know what you think Congress should be doing.

And also for the record, the language of this invite makes me nervous. Sound off in the comments below!