The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Snow.2
    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
  • Front.sculpt
    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
  • Front.tar.wide
    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
  • Front.pull
    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
  • Front.ropes
    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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2011.12.21 Anyone for some Bi Bim Bob or bone marrow?

Written by David Green.


If you have a child who’s a picky eater, take my advice: Send him or her to Thailand. That’s what it took for Maddie to completely get over years of a diet based largely on pizza and chicken nuggets—at least if she’d been left to her own devices.

Sure, she’d started eating things like veggie burgers and falafel sandwiches before she went to Thailand for an overseas study program, but it was her travels in Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia and Bali that really seemed to change her picky palate.

Now, when we meet Maddie in Ann Arbor for dinner, there’s a whole new kind of problem: The restaurant choices are endless and she’s open to most of them. Plus, she’s not partial to any except maybe Arbor Brewing Company...but how many black bean burgers with spinach and red peppers can one girl eat?

Since her days in Ann Arbor are numbered—she’s headed back to California in January and then will travel to New Zealand to work on organic farms—choosing new restaurants seems like the best course of action. 

So, when we learned about one, Bell’s Diner, from Sybil and Stephanie Diccion this weekend, it seemed like we should check it out. Bell’s Diner serves Korean food and breakfast fare all day long. It’s the restaurant we should have known about during Maddie’s college days. Instead of us suffering through Pizza House, Maddie could have enjoyed pancakes while we entered heaven with Bi Bim Bop. So, I e-mailed her about it.

“Sybil suggests Bell's Diner for dinner. Are you thinking of somewhere to eat yet?”

“I’ve never heard of Bell’s Diner. I have a coupon for a free meal at Mongolian BBQ...,” she said, and then sent me a link to the Bell’s Diner menu with these comments.

“It’s expensive. I’ve heard of Chris Wicks, though...I think he might do Selma stuff sometimes.”

“Selma” is Selma Café, a unique eating establishment (only open on Friday mornings) in an Ann Arbor couple’s home. It’s a “local foods breakfast salon” staffed by volunteers (Maddie among them) with the food often made by local chefs.

Chris Wicks? I’ve never heard of Chris Wicks. But I’ve already searched Bell’s Diner online and read that it’s good and it’s cheap.

I go to the link she’s sent.

For starters, among other oddities, you can choose these:

Snail Fricase, mushroom, hen egg, parsley, quinoa.

Crab, spring onion, red dulce, fennel, sand.

For the main course?

Monkfish, oxtail, turnip, pickled herbs chicken, Jerusalem artichoke, girolles, game chips, venison, beetroot, cocoa, salsify, bone marrow.

“Are you on drugs?” I ask Maddie. “This appears to be a menu from England...the prices are in pounds.”

(I can’t imagine that her palate has expanded to include bone marrow and snails—or sand for that matter. Still, I’m a little bummed that we won’t get a chance to try the “AMUSE BOUCHE” offerings. Not that I knew what Amuse Bouche meant before I looked it up. “Funny mouth” is what I would have guessed using my limited knowledge of French, but it’s a single, tiny, bite-sized hors d’œuvre.) 

“Oh. Yeah. I wondered why it was euros...just thought it was trying to be authentic,” Maddie says. “I swear there’s a guy named Chris Wicks who owns restaurants in Ann Arbor though...”

I ask if Bell’s Diner (the Korean and breakfast one) sounds like someplace she’d like to try for our early dinner, but she doesn’t really care. We decide to go and check out the menu (it’s not online) and then decide. 

There’s no menu on the door so we head inside and ask to see one. We tell the waitress we’re not sure about eating there, but she invites us to sit down in a booth, read the menu, and then decide.

David takes his coat off almost immediately. I read about Bi Bim Bop and am ready to order. It’s all up to Maddie. She looks up from her menu and says, “Isn’t that Stephanie right there?” 

David and I turn around and our bouches are amused to see Stephanie Diccion just starting a late lunch with her son, Ian. 

We joined them for a great meal and conversation, but I kept wondering, Where is Chris Wicks?

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