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Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2010

Boris and Doris On the Town

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Centenarian Celebration: The Zoological Society of Milwaukee (ZSM) celebrated its 100th birthday with a big blowout featuring a competition of 16 zoo-themed cakes. Judges included “Foodie-About-Town” Kyle Cherek, Dr. Robert Davis, Zoological Society CEO, MATC culinary instructors Tom LaPierre and Debra Socha, Zoo Director Chuck Wikenhauser, and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Food Editor Nancy Stohs.  

And the winner was… drumroll… a 2-foot-tall giraffe, created by the ever-innovative Robin Krajcik from Regina’s Bay Bakery in Whitefish Bay. The piece took more than 30 hours to create. Capturing the “people’s choice” award and judges’ runner-up title was a lifelike cake hippo, designed by Eat Cake owner Debbie Pagel.

The cake was gifted to Third Ward hippo enthusiast Bob Dohmen and his girlfriend, Shannon Buending, of Tender Care Animal Health. Dohmen, whose family foundation supports the zoo’s hippo enclosure, planned to share Pagel’s cake during an upcoming Admirals game, in a skybox he won at the Zoo Ball raffle.

Thousands of animal fans attended the party, thrilling sponsor Tri City National Bank and ZSM event organizers Jessica Groth and Julia Kolker. Greeting eager zoo-goers was Rachel Neubauer, period clothing coordinator for Old World Wisconsin, leading a contingent of historical interpreters dressed in 1910 garb. The Easy Days Barbershop Quartet performed lively turn-of-the-last-century tunes.

Admiring the cakes were ZSM associate board members Brookellen Teuber, Tricia Shinners and Karen Loth. Rachel Jones, a founding member of Zoo Pride, which began 35 years ago, was on hand, along with volunteers Jim and Nancy Redding, wearing original and current zoo uniforms. Helping out were ZSM’s Lynn Wilding, volunteer services coordinator, and Paula Brookmire, publications coordinator.

Still In the Building: Die-hard Presley and motorcycle fans braved snowdrifts for the opening of an Elvis exhibit at the Harley-Davidson Museum. A celebration of the gyrating crooner’s would-have-been 75th birthday was held at the Motor Bar & Restaurant, featuring guitarist Liam Ford. He ably channeled the singer’s oldies, while guests munched the rock ’n’ roller’s signature peanut butter and banana sandwiches.

Taking time off from their daytime Harley duties were marketer Rebecca Bortner; Curatorial Director Jim Fricke; Barb Mannion, retail director; and Eric Birkholz, restaurant head. Bill Jackson, the museum’s archivist and organizer of the facility’s new Tuesday night trivia competition, held a mini-round of questions.

Among the winners was retired firefighter and Vietnam Marine Paul Szymborski, who readily knew Gen. William Westmoreland’s name for one answer. Szymborski was at the soiree with friends Ray Kleszczynski and Greg Schneider. Also stopping by were Motor regulars/Harley enthusiasts Bob Myszewski, manager of Waukesha’s Paint Shoppe, and his pal, Teddy Loiselle, and Thomas and Kelly Sperry, who host Harley rides for nonagenarians at Tudor Oaks Retirement Community, where he is the director of environmental services.   

Dana Hartenstein, Hunger Task Force communications coordinator, sold raffle tickets for a 2009 Sportster 883 Custom, with the winner to be announced at the Chili Bowl, held in Motor on Jan. 31. Keeping busy selling the popular Lakefront Brewery Motor Oil beer was bartender Amber Bautch, soon to graduate from the Lakeside School of Massage Therapy, with service backup by John Little.

Dandy Andy: Art lovers poured into the final day of the Milwaukee Art Museum’s Andy Warhol exhibit to glimpse the artist’s iconic works before the show hit the road again. In the background, Sgt. Daniel West entertained the crowd with his mellifluous vibraphone. A January birthday group, celebrating longer than they care to remember, included Mike Boyle, who claimed “he’s too young to be this old,” and his wife, Brigid; along with their neighbor, Marilyn Schrader, and her sister and brother-in-law, Ruth and Jim Metz. Walt Kelly and his wife, Sandra Hays; Sharon Litvin; and artist Fuji Yamaguchi Moses and her husband, Wayne, also toured the show.  

Although the adorable 11-month-old Evert Binder enjoyed Warhol’s works, he preferred the museum’s “Green Furniture Design” display, according to his mom, Jessica, from the Bicycle Federation, and dad, Chris, Urban Ecology Center’s facility coordinator.

Bliffert-izing: Fred Bliffert and the Blifftones packed the upstairs of Paddy’s Pub, getting the head-bopping and humming-along audience up and dancing by the third set. Blifftone bassist Mark McHale hosted a slew of fans, including his partner, Terry Kumakura, and his daughter, Reshma McHale; plus nephews Patrick Schwemmer, from Princeton, N.J., Mike Schwemmer from Syracuse, N.Y., and Ben Schwemmer of Ripon.

Vocalist Mary Broad also sported a fan club, with Cedarburg’s Lori Cobb and her daughter, singer Dani Cobb, and her pal, Peter Massey.

Others groovin’ to the music were Judge Charles Kahn and his wife, Patti Keating Kahn, there with pals Tess Burkart and Mike Paulson; along with Sarah Alkire; Pat Doyle; Louanna Harris; Larry Theiss, music director at Lumen Christi church in Mequon; and Jeff Shavzin, a basketball buddy of the group’s guitar player, Mike Wanger. Also having a grand time were Fred’s clan: Emily Bliffert and Matt Michelin of Schaumburg, Ill., and Theresa Bliffert and her fiancé, Michael Halfer of Minneapolis.

If you have any tips for Boris and Doris, contact them at borisanddorisott@aol.com. Their next column will appear in the Jan. 28 issue of the Shepherd.n