Countdown To Summer’s Finale’, Labor Day Weekend Festivities, Football Fever And The Reds

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There seems to be an ecstatic fury of comments by my Facebook friends ranging from schools being back in session, to “I’m reposting this recipe” and what game they’re going to settle in the easy chair or secure a spot on the sidelines for. Admittedly, there is disappointment with the Cincinnati Reds’ season, but, A WIN IS A WIN…we’ll take a win when we can get it. Could be a rumor, I cannot confirm or deny, but are the Browns contenders or not this year?  I’ll get back to you on this one.

One particular posting by my longtime (hometown) friend, L.R. Faires, truly touched my heart and I even read it twice. He listed events taking place from mid-August all the way to mid-October and sentimentally gestured what an amazing time of year this is and how fortunate we all are to be living in the area we do. L.R. reminded his (2,000 plus) Facebook friends how he values their friendship, treasured memories and for what the future beholds. He also spoke of a carnival in our hometown called The Old Settlers’ Reunion where many, many years of family and friends have gathered together for an annual celebration of where we are from.  If we’re lucky enough we see our friends and family each year, but, sometimes it is 30 years before they appear again.  Yes, I’m talking about you MIKE!
Our carnival takes place from the Wednesday prior to Labor Day and ends on Labor Day evening. It’s a time to reflect on our ancestors that helped originate the reunion by stringing lights across Sixth Street in Jacksonville, served ice cream and where the clanging sound of horseshoes still resonate in The Grove.  We fire up the grills and back yard fires for food that never tastes as good as it does as when we “come home!” Laughter from the carnival rides and from back yard jokes are easily heard through town as it all bounces of the village hills.  Not only does the laughter and our relationships bring us back each year, but, the carnival food does too…the bees are in nectar heaven at the lemonade stand – the line for the fries is worth the wait – the stainless steel large as a table-top grill mounted high with sausage, peppers and onions is an annual must have at the reunion (but, fabulous any time of year) – it’s 90 degrees, but, sure I’ll have a fresh from the oven slice of pizza dripping with sweet sauce and mozzarella – subs – salads –  hot dogs – beer dogs – funnel cakes, cotton candy and caramel apples are main staples.  Arms open wide when I see you on the street this weekend!
Whether you need a fabulous dish to take to a family reunion, camping, a picnic or for your food tray in front of the flat screen – here’s a recipe for CHEESY BAKED DIP from triedandtasty.com that another hometown friend shared on Facebook. 
Cheesy Baked Dip
8 ounces of sour cream
8 ounces of cream cheese
16 ounces of cheddar, grated (mild or sharp)
4 ounces of chopped green chilies
Green onion to taste
1 cup of chopped ham
½ pound chopped bacon
1 round bread loaf, hollowed out
Bake at 350 degrees for one (1) hour, uncovered.
**I think a loaf of Rosemary and Olive Oil Bread would be an excellent choice for this dip. A can of Rotella would certainly be a complement as well**
Recipe offered by friend Janie Roback on Facebook. Recipe courtesy of triedandtasty.com