Does it feel like nothing is as usual this election season?
Take comfort in the fact that Temple Beth El, 2702 Arbor Drive (behind Knickerbocker Place on Monroe Street) will hold its 42nd annual election day Food-A-Rama. Corned beef sandwiches and kosher hot dogs are on the menu for the sit-down lunch (11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.); the take-out deli (10:30 am-1:30 pm) will be selling corned beef by the pound, salami, rye bread, homemade chicken and matzo ball soup, homemade cabbage soup and homemade baked goods. Call 608-238-3123 to order in advance. Proceeds support Temple Beth El and other community organizations such as the YWCA's Third Street Program, and Hospice.
Ben and Jerry's is trying to get out the vote by offering a free scoop of ice cream from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. on November 4. The burden of proof that you voted isn't all that tough -- you can show your "I voted" sticker, a photo of yourself in the voting booth, you can "do the 'I Voted' dance" or "just tell us you voted."
Second Harvest Food Bank is asking you to bring a non-perishable food item or two to your polling place when you vote. Specifically, Second Harvest needs stews, pasta meals, meals in a box, canned fruit, canned tuna fish, peanut butter and jelly, breakfast cereal, pasta sauce and dry pasta, beans and rice, and crackers. Voting early? Bring your item to the City Clerk's office. Don't live in the city of Madison? In addition to collecting food at 85 polling places in Madison, Second Harvest is collecting at many polling spots outside the city. Call 608-223-9121 for more info.
It is possible that whatever happens on November 4 may make you lose your appetite. However, let's assume that you are still hungry. What are you going to eat on Wednesday, November 5? Indie Coffee has its "Waffle Wednesdays," $1 off all the cafe's terrific waffles, which include chocolate, "Red + White" (buttermilk with whipped cream and strawberries), chocolate chocolate chip, and walnut-added.
Let's say that you feel like celebrating. Really celebrating. L'Etoile presents $39 prix fixe menus Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; the menu changes weekly. Recent options included a Northwood Farm pastrami salad; vodka-battered fried skate with autumn slaw and frites; and apple beignets with Calvados caramel sauce.
And more openings, closings, and expectations...
The Dawg House is now officially open at 505 State St. with Chicago-style hot dogs, corn dogs, Coney dogs, brats, Polish sausage, gyros, Italian beef, burgers and chicken sandwiches.
Bunky's Café is working toward expanding into the old Goodman-Atwood Community building down the block from its current location on Atwood Avenue. The restaurant still has to go before the city plan commission and the Common Council for approvals.
Crema Café has opened a second location on the west side at 494 Commerce Drive (at the corner of Watts Road). Same great menu as the east side location on Monona Drive.
Looks like Laredo's Mexican restaurant will be opening a third location in Fitchburg, in the old video store space at the Yarmouth Crossing shopping center at the corner of Fish Hatchery and McKee Roads.
The former Mad City Crab House (in the space formerly occupied by Ton Ton) is now the Tiki Shack, with a special Tiki Bar in the adjacent storefront that faces State Street.
The Casbah is still (temporarily) closed for lunch.