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

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

2011.12.21 Anyone for some Bi Bim Bob or bone marrow?

Written by David Green.

By COLLEEN LEDDY

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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