Some guys have a regular night for poker, or darts night, or get together at a sports bar for wing night.
Alyssa and I thought that sounded pretty good. An excuse to get together no greater than the bar's appetizer special. We wanted a "wing night," too. Now it's become an ongoing joke: anytime things get crazy, one of us will ask - time for Wing Night?
We organized a wing night - actually a wing "day" - Sunday on the South Side of Bethlehem, that had nothing to do with wings. We'd planned to go to lunch at Blue Sky Cafe, but the tables were full of Lehigh students and parents, and the line was out the door. The food at Blue Sky is fantastic, but the kitchen is only sobig. So we walked up the street to see if Horns was open. Nope. Back up 4th Street, we passed by La Lupita, Subway, Alexandra's Bistro, Nawab and General Zapata's (all open). We decided to visit Nawab since the $9.95 buffet was open and we were both hungry for something a little different. Eating at their daily lunch buffet is a great way to try out a variety of Indian dishes without commiting to one, and you can "order with your eyes" instead of off the menu, where you might not recognize the names of dishes. There were vegetarian and chicken dishes, and lots of colorful options, including a bright-red chicken tikka masala and a green saag paneer (but no wings).
After making a quick detour back home to let FH into the house - he'd locked himself out - we rolled over to SteelStacks to check out Christkindlmarkt. I have two ways to get in free: I volunteered at the event this year, so I can go anytime, and we are ArtsQuest members. She had a free pass from work.
When we arrived, we saw the admissions line snaked out the door, and heard Christmas music playing. We walked right in, and were drawn in to the booths with handmade crafts, ornaments, and silly kids' hats. In the center area, an artist wielding a chainsaw was carving a dog out of ice, and the glass artists from Banana Factory were making glass candy canes. In the second tent, a brass band was performing Christmas standards while the shoppers perused more gifts. Alyssa picked up something for someone which shall remain secret in case that someone reads this blog.
It was a great wing day, and a good example of how to "make a day" on the South Side.
The history: Christkindlmarkt used to be on the north side of Bethlehem, where Volksplatz is during Musikfest. But its new south side location includes plenty of free parking, access to the ArtsQuest Center with real bathrooms (vs. outdoor port-o-johns at Christkindlmarkt), great food, films and performances, and now - the blast furnace light show!
Cost: $8, but anyone can get a $1 off coupon from the ArtsQuest web site. Military servicemen and veterans also get a discount. Seniors and students get a $1 discount which cannot be combined with the coupon.
Parking: Free, across the street from the tents in a gravel lot.
If you want to volunteer, there are still shifts available. I enjoy helping out at the front of the house, at the information desk or the admissions area, welcoming everyone to Bethlehem and answering questions. Top 2 questions: Where do we go for lunch/dinner after this and where is Santa?
For more information on CK and other Bethlehem holiday happenings: Visit the ArtsQuest web site.