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by Anne Mitchell 11.20.2011
at 05:06 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
piglets

Dean Family Farm Needs Support

Local Heritage Breed Farmers, the Dean family, growing their business

Dean Family Farms is seeking financing to keep growing their business. If you've been to locavore events like the Farm Fair in Covington, you've met Beth and Bill Dean. If not, there's a great story here.

The Deans' heritage Red Wattle Pigs, beloved by chefs like Todd Kelly of the Palm Court and Julie Francis at Nectar, are an endangered breed, and at this point, their farm is also endangered by lack of finances. Bill has a Kickstarter project going to help them raise money to match a federal Environmental Quality Incentives Program grant to improve their barns.

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by Isaac Thorn 07.08.2009
Posted In: baseball at 11:33 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 

Which Sucks More: Wrigley or Cubs Fans?

Sometimes as nicely as you'd like to put things it is hard to maintain a professional, calm and reserved style when communicating about it. When Reds announcers and many others described Shea stadium as "a dump" when it was limping in the direction of euthanasia, I knew what they meant but didn't agree that it was that terrible.

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by 07.14.2009
Posted In: Courts, Internet at 04:32 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 

Lawsuit Against Haap, Heimlich Dismissed

An Illinois-based organization dropped its defamation lawsuit this month against local blogger Jason Haap and two other critics. The two-year-old case was widely viewed as having the potential to set a precedent involving First Amendment protections for online commentary.

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by Mike Breen 05.07.2012
at 12:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
taste_crowd

2012 Best of Taste Awards Announced

The "Best of Taste" awards — a precursor to the Taste of Cincinnati food fest later this month — were doled out today. Eighty dishes from 30 restaurants were served to judges — "celebrities, foodies and the epicurious" — and they awarded the Crab and Shrimp Dumpling with Noodle from Arloi Dee Thai Bistro the coveted "Best Damn Dish" prize.

Here's the full list of winners:

Appetizers
Best of Taste: Strasse Haus, Fried Peanut Butter & Jelly
Award of Excellence: LaRosa’s, Spinach Rondo
Award of Merit:  Market Street Grille, Stuffed Chicken Amore
 
Soups/Salads
Best of Taste: du jours/Courtyard Café, Hunter’s Home Turkey Chili
Award of Excellence: ZZ’s Pizza Company, Caprese Salad  
Award of Merit: City Barbeque, Gumbo              
 
Seafood
Best of Taste: Arloi Dee Thai Bistro, Crab & Shrimp Dumpling with Noodle            
Award of Excellence: ZZ’s Pizza Company, Seafood Pizza 
Award of Merit: Mahagony’s, Shrimp and Grits               
 
Entrees
Best of Taste: Andy’s Mediterranean Grille, Gyro Wrap                                    
Award of Excellence: Claddagh Irish Pub, Jameson Burger 
Award of Merit: Lazlo’s Iron Skillet, Walking Chicken Saltimbocca
          
Vegetarian Entree
Best of Taste: du jours/Courtyard Café, Black Bean Burrito                           
Award of Excellence:  J. Gumbo’s, Bumblebee Stew 
Award of Merit: LaRosa’s, Skinny Wheat Pizza
 
Desserts
Best of Taste: ZZ’s Pizza Company, Banana Cream Pie                     
Award of Excellence:  du jour’s/Courtyard Café, Raspberry Cloud Pie         
Award of Merit: Claddagh Irish Pub, Bread Pudding
                      
Best Damn Dish                 
Arloi Dee Thai Bistro, Crab & Shrimp Dumpling with Noodle

Taste of Cincinnati is coming up Memorial Day weekend, May 26-28. Visit TasteofCincinnati.com for more details.

 
 
by Stephen Carter-Novotni 04.16.2010
at 03:38 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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CityBeat Podcast 44: Wendell Berry

Philosopher-farmers Wendell Berry, Wes Jackson and Gene Logsdon discuss the future of agriculture, the environment and changing our ideas about growth and progress. Recorded live at Xavier University on April 11. Special thanks to Xavier University's Ethics/Religion and Society Department.

Read CityBeat's related Green Issue here.

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by 07.08.2009
Posted In: Media, Financial Crisis, Business at 04:32 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Enquirer Layoffs: The Tally So Far

People in the media industry have been dreading it for a while, and now it's finally here: "Black Wednesday."

Mass layoffs began today at newspapers owned by The Gannett Co., which includes The Cincinnati Enquirer. As with past layoffs at the paper, details of which staffers were affected are leaking in spurts and fits, but here's what we know so far.

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by German Lopez 10.05.2012
Posted In: Prisons, News, Government at 12:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
Liberty for Sale

Private Prison Violates State Rules

Audit finds Northeast Ohio prison in compliance with only two-thirds of state standards

A recent audit of the Ohio prison bought by Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) found the private prison is only meeting 66.7 percent of the state’s standards. The report found a total of 47 violations in the CCA-owned prison, which the state government sold to CCA last year as part of a privatization push set out in Ohio’s 2012-13 budget.

The news comes slightly more than two weeks after CityBeat published a story looking at the many problems presented by Ohio’s policy to privatize prisons (“Liberty for Sale,” issue of Sept. 19).

“It was apparent throughout certain departments that DRC policy and procedure is not being followed,” the audit said. “Staff was interviewed and some stated they are not sure what to do because of the confusion between CCA policy and DRC policy. Some staff expressed safety concerns due to low staffing numbers and not having enough coverage. Other staff stated that there is increased confusion due to all the staffing transitions.”

The report says “there has been a big staff turnover,” and only one staff person was properly trained to meet Ohio Risk Assessment System standards. The audit found that a workplace violence liaison wasn’t appointed or trained. Inmates complained they felt unsafe and that staff “had their hands tied’” and “had little control over some situations.”

The local fire plan had no specific steps to release inmates from locked areas in case of emergency, and local employees said “they had no idea what they should do” in case of a fire emergency.

The audit also found all housing units provided less than the required 25 square feet on unencumbered space per occupant. It found single watch cells held two prisoners with some sleeping on the floor, and some triple-bunked cells had a third inmate sleeping on a mattress on the floor. 

Searches in general seemed to be a problem for CCA. Documentation showed that contraband searches were only done 16 days in August. When the searches were done, the contraband was not properly processed to the vault and was sometimes left in desks. The private prison also could not provide documentation that proved executive staff were conducting weekly rounds to informally observe living and working conditions among inmates and staff.

These findings, although major, are only the tip of the iceberg: Inmates claimed laundry and cell cleaning services were not provided and CCA could not prove otherwise, recreation time was not always allowed five times a week in segregation as required, food quality and sanitization was not up to standards, infirmary patients were “not seen timely,” patients’ doctor appointments were often delayed with follow-ups rarely occurring, the facility had no written confined space program, the health care administrator could not explain or show an overall plan and nursing competency evaluations were not completed before the audit was conducted. Many more issues were found as well.

The one bright spot in the report is ODRC found staff to be “very professional, friendly and helpful during the audit.” Inmates were also “dressed appropriately and found to be wearing their identification badges.”

The findings shine some light into why ODRC Director Gary Mohr might have decided to stop privatizing Ohio’s prisons. On Sept. 25 — the same day the audit was mailed to Mohr’s office — Mohr announced his department would focus on sentencing reforms to bring down recidivism instead of saving costs by privatizing more prisons. The news came during the week CityBeat’s cover story on private prisons was in stands.

Mohr is one of many in Gov. John Kasich’s administration to have previous connections to CCA. He advised the private prison company “in areas of staff leadership, and development and implementing unit management,” according to the ODRC website. Donald Thibaut, Kasich’s former chief of staff and close friend, now lobbies for CCA. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine also helped CCA reopen its Youngstown facility in 2004 with a federal contract during his term as U.S. senator.

The report confirms a lot of what CityBeat found in its in-depth look at private prisons. The studies cited in CityBeat’s Sept. 17 story — including research by the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio — found multiple issues in private prisons’ standards around the country. One study by George Washington University found private prisons have a 50 percent higher rate of inmate-on-staff assault and a 66 percent higher rate of inmate-on-inmate assault. The troubling numbers were attributed to lower standards at private prisons that keep costs low and profits high.

The lower standards are coupled with a private prison’s need to house as many inmates as possible, contrary to public interests of keeping re-entry to prisons low.

“It doesn’t make any difference to them whether or not a person eventually integrates back into society,” said Mike Brickner, communications and public policy director at ACLU. “Looking from a cynical approach, it actually helps them if that person (is convicted again) because they come back into their prison and they get money off them again.”

Poor living and health standards were also found in a Youngstown prison held by CCA in the 1990s. In 1997, the Youngstown prison was opened by CCA to house 1,700 of the nation’s most dangerous criminals. Within one year, 20 prisoners were stabbed, two were murdered and six escaped. The ensuing public outrage led to higher standards at the facility. The more stringent rules were credited for leading to the prison’s eventual closing as the facility was quickly made unprofitable for CCA.

Steve Owen, spokesperson for CCA, responded to the audit in a statement: “CCA is taking concrete corrective steps to ensure that this facility meets not only the ODRC's goals but our own high expectations for our facilities. We are working in partnership with the ODRC on a development plan, which will lay out a road map to meet our goals, and our team will meet bi-weekly with ODRC staff and officials until we have this matter resolved.”

 
 
by Ashley Thomas 07.08.2009
Posted In: Fashion with Ashley at 02:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Fashion Inspiration: Fashion Goes Blade Runner

Mesh, spikes, studs and leather have all been appearing in the past two years or so of runway, namely with designer Alexander Wang. I can't help but think of that amazing movie from the early '80s, Blade Runner, or Gotham City even. Also, the FIT Museum had an exhibit entitled Gothic: Dark Glamour earlier this Spring that I was fortunate enough to see. Is it a sign of the dark times? Or just another go around for '80s punk revival? Maybe it's both. Either way, I'd like to feature this fashion statement for inspiration today in all of its dark, glamorous and quirky ways.

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by Ashley Thomas 07.30.2009
Posted In: Fashion with Ashley at 11:15 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)
 
 

Buried Treasure: A Cincinnati Boutique Shopping Guide

If you still want to find that particular item that is unique but is maybe from a local or up-and-coming designer and is of high quality, Cincinnati has quite a few options for you to peruse. If you so choose, use the following as a guide to help you along your way!

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by Mike Breen 10.24.2012
Posted In: Live Music, Local Music, Music News, Music Video at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
toasterspressphoto_2010

Music Tonight: The Toasters

Legendary NYC Ska group brings 30th anniversary tour to Cincy for free show

American Ska legends The Toasters perform a free show tonight at MOTR Pub in Over-the-Rhine. Showtime is 10 p.m. and — sorry, kids — you must be 21 or older to get in.

The band was one of the leading inspirations behind the "third-wave" Ska explosion of the ’90s, but the band actually began 30 years ago, influenced by the 2-Tone Ska movement in the U.K. The Toasters blend of NYC Rock and 2-Tone made them cult heroes in the Ska underground, as did the band's D.I.Y. approach; founding member (the sole one in the current lineup) Robert "Bucket" Hingley formed the influential Moon Ska Records in 1983 to release his own albums, as well as those by acts like Mustard Plug, The Slackers and Hepcat. The label's various compilations also gave a boost to up-and-coming, non-Moon acts like Less Than Jake and No Doubt.

Here's The Toasters' first music video, for the tune "Radiation Skank" off of the band's debut release, 1985's Recriminations EP (which was produced by British singer/songwriter Joe Jackson; he is to The Toasters what Elvis Costello was to The Specials).



And here is "Modern World America" off The Toasters' 2002 release, Enemy of the System.



 
 

 

 

 
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