Monday, July 28, 2008

Devouring pancakes and books in Hillsdale

Yesterday, hundreds of Hillsdale friends and neighbors descended on a parking lot to devour blueberry pancakes (and scrambled eggs and sausage) and to browse through and snap up hundreds of books.

The pancake breakfast, organized by the Hillsdale Business and Professional Association as "thanks" its customers, fed some 650 diners. This year's event was the 32nd. It became a "tradition" long ago.

At the back of the lot between the Key Bank and Casa Colima restaurant, the Hillsdale Alliance held its 3rd annual summer book sale. And estimated 7,000 books had been donated over four collection Sundays at the Hillsdale Farmers Market. The sale netted $4,300. On average, books sold for a buck a piece. The proceeds go to Alliance members, which include Hillsdale's three public schools, the Farmers Market, the Hillsdale Neighborhood Association, Neighborhood House and the Library.

Dozens of volunteers worked on both events. As one of them, I'm grateful there were so many who worked so hard.

The breakfast and the sale were huge efforts, but at the end of the day, we realized that we had created a lot of fun — all in the name of community and celebration.

A note on the two guys flipping pancakes. The one on the right is Richard Garfinkle, known to one and all as "Dr. Rock and Roll." He's been flipping pancakes nearly as long as he has been straightening teeth. On the left is "The Rookie Flipper," Tom Mattox, director of outreach for the Food Front Cooperative. A year ago Tom and Food Front had no idea that they would be in Hillsdale serving a pancakes on July 27, 2008.

Now they are just a month away from opening a store here. Let's hope they are destined to flip pancakes the last Sunday of July for eons to come. No doubt Garfinkle will be there to guide them.

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