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Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012

Boris and Doris On the Town

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Gastronomic Overload: Throughout the weekend, more than 7,000 people poured into the fourth Wine & Dine Wisconsin at the Delta Center. The well-orchestrated event, organized by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Becky Steimle and David Wise, featured more delicious goodies than anyone could imagine, plus chef demos and 200 wine and beer choices. Gina Styer helmed the Feeding America booth, along with Crystal Hall and Jennifer Anschutz serving Sendik’s Wicked Brownies. Among the highlights: Rumpus Room’s Matt Kerley offering bacon jam, a demo by Dream Dance Steak chef Matt Baier, Daphne Jones’ patés, and delicious Wildtree grapeseed oil represented by Jennifer DeLaura.

Holidaze: The opening day of the winter Westown Indoor Market at The Shops of Grand Avenue featured Ruegsegger Farms’ fresh produce, balsamic vinegars from the Emporium of Balsamic, and Birdman’s pheasant sticks sold by Kelly Clobes. Classy Girl Cupcakes’ owner Erica Elia presented decorating tips, aided by Kevin Grochowski, the company’s “brawns.” Kevin Harris peddled Tara Hubbert’s soy candles, mentioning Now U See Us, a new pop-up gallery on Murray open through December.

Visit Milwaukee ambassador Tammy Johnson handed out info for a Pere Marquette Park holiday party as passers-by wandered into Anita Hero’s Cream City Soap Co., a just-opened incubator store. Musician Joe Wray added to the ambiance. Koula Haltoupi from Grecian Garden, one of the original Grand Avenue tenants, celebrated the eatery’s 30th anniversary in the food court.

Such Talent: The Cedarburg Cultural Center held its monthly open-mic night, called the Blueburg Café, created by its executive director, Lauren Rose Hofland. The 17 10-minute performances were top-notch. Guitarists included fingerstyle whiz Tom Robinson, who teaches at the adjacent Famous Music, and ex-journalist Bob Petrie.

Pianist Chris Stevenson, a 16-year-old Cedarburg high school student, played a moving “Clair de Lune” and ukulele player Tyler Boesch received a standing ovation for his rendition of “Hallelujah.” Married 27 years, Kim and Mark Albrecht sang about maturing love, 72-year-old Thomas Johnston strummed the banjo, and poets Sarah Rennicke and Peter Duncan read their oeuvres. Porch Poets singer Rick Pesich cloned Elvis, backed by bassist Victor Getson, a veterinarian. Twelve-year-old future star Lovely Jackson belted out an amazing version of “Rolling in the Deep,” there with her mother Kwanita Jackson and 6-year-old brother Jalen Green.

Celtic Boo!: UW-Milwaukee’s Center for Celtic Studies celebrated its annual Halloween Céilí (party) in Greene Hall with ghost stories, foot-tapping music of Ceol Cairde and guitar tunes by Rory Modlinski. The center’s irrepressible co-director John Gleeson even baked a loaf of barmbrack fruit bread. Circulating were professor Bairbre Ni Chiardha; Nancy Madden Walczyk, recently retired associate director of the center; Kelli McQueen, Margaret Schumacher and her husband, Jim Lambe; professor José Lanters; musician Brendan Murphy; Al Malmsten; and Fulbright awardee David Menees.

Beth Herbert was costumed as an ancient Welsh seer; James Berger was resplendent in his Farquhar tartan kilt, while Maggie McGwin came as Miss Scarlett, a Cluedo character; and Sheila Brehmer portrayed a hag. Many of the partiers partook in the rousing Gay Gordons and fast-paced Stack of Barley folk dances.

Milwaukee’s Art Scene: The vibrant Portrait Society Gallery, headed by Deb Brehmer, reopened its newly designed Third Ward space with standing-room-only revelers. The artsy crowd included Shana McCaw and Brent Budsberg, heading to Death Valley for an installation; sculptor Kevin Giese; photographer John Ruebartsch; Flame and Ann Powell, wearing a vintage lid once owned by socialite Mrs. Astor; photographer Erik Ljung, rushing off to Turner Hall, where musicman Marc Solheim celebrated his birthday; Kay and Richard Knight; Tim Murphy; artists Jeanne Olivieri and Thea Kovac, with son Alderman Nik Kovac; Historic Milwaukee’s Grace Fuhr; activist Bill Sell; Nancy and Joe Alvarado; Jimmy von Milwaukee; photographer Jim Seder and his wife, Marie; and Skip Forrest, owner of Wild Coast Wine. Jack Eigel and “the junior jet set” Skully Gustafson and Erik Moore also made the scene.

After, Dan Wilson and Brooke Maroldi’s artfully filmed White Wind premiered at the 14th annual Milwaukee Short Film Festival (MSFF) at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Cellist Janet Schiff, who composed the haunting score, was in the audience, along with festival director Ross Bigley. Bill Quirmbach manned the door, where B&D ran into old pals photographer Dennis Felber and Jayne Holland, plus artist/actress Shannon Sloan-Spice and her daughters Lucy and Charlotte.

Security Now: Safe & Sound’s successful “Building Safe & Sustainable Neighborhoods, Together” fundraiser attracted 450 breakfasters at the Pfister Hotel. Board Chair MPD Chief Ed Flynn led the group in a hats-off to U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl, who received the Champion Award. Among the who’s-who crowd were Mayor Tom Barrett, District Attorney John Chisholm, U.S. Attorney James Santelle and U.S. Marshal Kevin Carr and a gaggle of Milwaukee County Circuit Court judges including Kremers, Dallet, Sankovitz, Rothstein, Sosnay, Borowski, Wagner and Kuhnmuench. Artist Barbara Kohl-Spiro, Ellen Gilligan, Susan Lloyd, MillerCoors’ Tami Garrison and Ricardo Diaz also attended. Event chairs JoAnne Anton and Kimberly Kane and Executive Director Barb Notestein were appropriately thrilled.

If you have any tips for Boris and Doris, contact them at borisanddorisott@aol.com. Their next column will appear in the Nov. 29 issue of the Shepherd.