Monday, May 18, 2009

Mountain Momma

People love to make fun of West Virginia. I think even more than people love to make Cleveland the butt of jokes, people love to make fun of the "rednecks" and "white trash" in WV. Not that this isn't completely unfounded, but I wouldn't write off the whole state just yet. My grandfather was born and raised in Parkersburg, WV, and to put it mildly, he was the complete opposite of a redneck. He lived most of his life in Westerville, Ohio, but he always considered himself from WV and we laid him to rest near his family there in November.

My family went down to Parkersburg on Friday night for the internment of my grandmother's ashes on Saturday morning. When I told people I was going to WV for the weekend, most people looked at me like I said I was going to spend the weekend in rolling in mud (that's what I did in Nashville people). We stayed in the beautiful Blennerhassett Hotel pictured above. Though we were there for somber reasons, it turned out to be a really lovely weekend. If you are looking for a romantic get away that is only 3 hours from Cleveland, I would highly recommend Parkersburg.

The restaurant in the hotel, Spats, had excellent food. We started with the Stuffed Button Mushrooms - Button Mushrooms filled with Sundried Tomatoes, Prosciutto, Fontina and topped with Japanese Breadcrumbs. Then I had the iceburg salad (it was ho-hum) and for entree, Filet Mignon - Chargrilled and served with an Applewood Bacon, Wild Mushroom and Bourbon Demi-Glace. I bet that's not what you expected me to eat in WV! And we got sweet deal - the room was $169 a night but it came with $100 gift card to the hotel that we used for dinner. Such a deal!

Sunday morning was the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon. We went down to watch the full marathoners and half marathoners who split right in front of my building. My sister, the Brown Bean (middle below), ran the half. It was a beautiful day, perfect running weather, and it was great to see Cleveland full of some so many healthy people! Congrats to all the runners!

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