Culinary Corner: It’s Holiday Time!

Once again, it’s time to eat, drink and be merry!  And there is no better place to do so than our local specialty restaurants.  This Culinary Corner will focus on local eateries to gather during the holiday season.  Whether you are gathering with family or friends, or you need a festive spot for the office staff Christmas party, Kokomo has you covered!

I have researched three local restaurants that will fit any occasion.  Casual, dressy or somewhere in between, the Quarry, Pastarrific or Half Moon can provide the perfect holiday atmosphere to compliment any party.

The Quarry, located at 2130 W. Sycamore, is simply spectacular!  Exquisite holiday decorations adorn each dining room, while the holiday music puts everyone the spirit of the season.  Along with the public dining space, the Quarry also offers two private rooms.  The Lions Den will seat 45 comfortably and the PDR will accommodate up to 30.  They are open Tuesday thru Saturday with lunch service 11am-2pm and dinner from 4pm-11pm.  The bar, which features hand crafted cocktails in addition to nightly specials, stays open later.

The Chef will have many different specials throughout the holiday season.  Pounded Pork Tenderloin, Oyster Rockefeller, and Peanut Crusted Salmon are just a few of the upcoming specials this season.  In the mood for live music?  Every Friday night from 8pm-11pm the Quarry will host live music to get your party started!  For more information or to make reservation, call 765-450-5650

Pastarrific, located at 3001 S. Webster, is Kokomo’s Italian jewel.  Now with banquet space to seat 25-200, Pastarrific can host your family dinner to the corporate Christmas party.  Chef Cynthia always has new and exciting menu selections to choose from along with their new Pub Room, which offers full bar selections.  Pastarrific is open for both lunch and dinner Monday thru Saturday and for lunch only on Sunday.  Call 765-455-1312 for more information or for reservations.

Half Moon Restaurant & Brewery is located on Kokomo’s southside at 4051 S. Lafountain.  Half Moon is Kokomo’s only brewery.  They hand-craft 10 different  beers in a state of the art 3.5 barrel all grain brewery, along with a wide selection of domestics,  imports and full bar.

Along with a large public dining space, the Back Pool Room will accommodate 30 of your closest friends, while the Family Room will seat up to 80.  Half Moon will have many holiday specials and will feature daily food and beer pairings.  The Half Moon opens at 11am, 7 days a week.  Call 765-455-2739 for daily specials or to reserve a private dining room

If you have a special event or party to plan and need suggestions, call the Greater Kokomo Visitors Bureau at 765-457-6802 or 800-837-0971.

Happy Holidays!

Kim Morgan
Greater Kokomo Visitors Bureau

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2011 Holiday Tours in Kokomo

Seiberling Mansion

Don’t miss a visit to the Seiberling Mansion during the holidays, an annual tradition in Kokomo!  The Seiberling Mansion, built in 1891 by Monroe Seiberling, is beautifully decorated both inside and out. 

Christmas at the Seiberling Opening Night will be held on Saturday, November 26, 2011 from 6:00-9:00 p.m with the Lighting Ceremony on the lawn at 6 p.m.  Activities throughout opening night include visits and pictures with Santa, carriage rides (advance reservations required), cookies & wassail, museum tours, special entertainment & more.  Admission is $4 for adults and $1 for children 12 & under.  

Seiberling Mansion holiday tours will continue Tuesday through Sunday from 1:00-4:00 p.m. through December 30th (closed on Dec. 24 & 25.)  
A special Candlelight Tour will be held on Saturday, December 10, 2011 from 6-9 p.m. (reservations are required.)  The Seiberling Mansion is located at 1200 West Sycamore Street in Kokomo.  For more information, call 765-452-4314 or visit www.howardcountymuseum.org.   

 

We Care Christmas Tree House

The We Care Christmas Tree House will be open for its 15th (and final year) this holiday season.  Located at 1501 East Sycamore Street, the owners of this private residence transform their Kokomo home each year and offer public tours.  Tours will be given daily 5:00-9:00 p.m. from November 26-December 23, 2011.  The home will be open special hours on December 3 & 4 from 12:00-9:00 p.m.  Free will donations will be accepted for We Care.

For more information on holiday events or tours in Kokomo, call 800-837-0971 or visit our Calendar of Events.

Kokomo Artworks: A New Downtown Jewel

Kokomo Artworks, a co-op of artists within the Kokomo Art Association, recently moved to a beautiful new gallery in Downtown Kokomo.  While the entrance from the outside looks like a typical downtown shop, what you see inside is anything but ordinary! 

A variety of artwork, ranging from watercolor, photography, to ceramics are all wonderfully displayed throughout the two story gallery, perfect for browsing with a morning cup of coffee or for holiday shopping.  Art classes are also given for those that want to try their own hand at painting or other forms of art.

In addition to individual artwork displays, Little Town Glass Company has a glass studio on the second floor featuring stained glass art, glass jewelry, and steampunk gears (a very fun moveable art) and more.  This family business (father & sons) hand-selects glass locally made at the Kokomo Opalescent Glass Company to make their unique and exquisite glass creations.

Little Town Glass Company's owner Michael West works in his glass studio inside Kokomo Artworks

Also, both Kokomo Artworks and Little Town Glass are part of the Indiana Glass Trail, which features several stops in the Kokomo area as it winds through the state.  For more information on the Indiana Glass Trail, visit www.IndianaGlassTrail.com or call the Greater Kokomo Visitors Bureau at 800-837-0971.  

Artworks is located at 210 North Main Street in beautiful Downtown Kokomo.  Hours are Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. & Saturday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.  For more information, call 765-459-4579 or visit their website.
 
Because often a picture can say more than words, here are some photos taken this week at Artworks.  Make time this holiday season to visit this new downtown jewel!

Don Wooldridge Named 2011 FIRSTS Award Winner

Don Wooldridge was presented the 2011 FIRSTS Award at the 97th Annual Chamber Dinner last night.  The Kokomo Visitors Bureau FIRSTS Award — which stands for Fantastic Individual Recognized for Superior Tourism Service — was created to acknowledge people in our community who stepped forward to make someone’s visit to Howard County far exceed their expectations.

It hasn’t been awarded every year, only when someone stepped forward to show Superior Tourism Service.  This award has been shared by sports people, hotel managers, museum staff, or the person on the street who stepped forward to give advice or directions to someone visiting our town.

Don has been involved with promoting Howard County tourism through his passion of automobiles and community involvement.   He is a member of the Pioneer Auto Club and has been a friend to Howard County tourism for many years.  He displays exceptional tourism service in his role as expert tour guide for the Kokomo Automotive Museum, giving tours to groups of all sizes while combining his love of cars and our community’s history.   

In addition to his service at the Auto Museum, he has been a volunteer step-on guide for the Greater Kokomo Visitors Bureau since 2007.  In this capacity, he has guided and shared his vast knowledge of Kokomo and Howard County with several tour groups from across Indiana.

Most recently, he was heavily involved with helping set up a tour stop along U.S. 31 at the Kokomo Automotive Museum’s parking lot during the 2011 National Hot Rod Power Tour that drove through Kokomo this past June.  While Kokomo was not an “official” stop on this cross-country tour, hundreds of cars stopped in Kokomo and many visited the museum while driving on U.S. 31 from Indianapolis to Michigan.  It was one of the best days for the Auto Museum’s gift shop sales since the museum opened, and Kokomo was recognized by Hot Rod for our city’s hospitality.

Don is one of many who promote hospitality and outstanding service in Kokomo and Howard County.  Congratulations Don!  Thank you for your volunteer work in our community and for making visitors feel welcome when visiting our city!

Tis the Season . . . for the 2011 We Care Trim-A-Tree Festival

2011 We Care Trim-A-Tree Festival

The We Care Trim-A-Tree Festival is going on now at the Kokomo Mall (located at the corner of U.S. 31 and Boulevard Street.)  Don’t miss the chance to see the beautiful trees on display and vote for your favorite (by putting change in the buckets!)  The Christmas trees and wreaths will be on display now through November 13, 2011.  The public can view the trees Monday-Thursday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m., Friday & Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., and Sunday 12-6 p.m.  Admission is free.    

Great for the entire family, this annual event is a favorite among those that live in Kokomo.  If you plan to visit the Kokomo area, the tree display is a must-see!  The auction will be held on November 13, 2011 starting at 4:45 p.m at the Kokomo Mall.  Bid on your favorite tree and you may get to take it home for the holidays!  Proceeds from the auction will benefit We Care.  For more information, about We Care, click here.  

I always enjoy going to see the trees and the fun decorating themes each year!  I have posted a few of my favorites from this year’s display below.  Tis the season … to start making holiday memories!

A cozy Christmas setting!

   

For all those snowmen collectors (like me) this is the ultimate tree!

 

Angry Birds anyone? This tree is sure to be popular with the kids!

 

Very traditional and elegant!

 

IU fans will be in heaven with this creative tree!