Drinks with Pat: A blissful summer

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This week, I caught up with Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss.

The main meat of that interview — far more serious topics than the following excerpt — will be found in the July/August issue of Grand Rapids Magazine, so be sure to pick that up.

But while I met with her at city hall, I figured I should see what has her most excited for this summer.

Here’s her answer:

“There’s a lot of exciting events and gatherings that are coming back with (a) vengeance. We saw some of it last summer, but we also saw a lot of folks hold off and push out some of their events until the fall, just because there were still a lot of unknowns with COVID. But you look at the summer before us, and we have … the festivals are coming back. We have music in public spaces, open spaces. We have a great lineup at Studio Park. We’ll be having music back at Rosa Parks Circle as soon as it opens up, but you’re starting to just see a lot of those events, especially outside events and community events come back, which is really exciting.

“Those are moments and opportunities for the community to come together, which I think is important, especially after two years of the pandemic. I’m looking forward to reconnecting with people face to face and to just have some shared experiences and to just spend time together. And I think a lot of people are excited about that.”

The mayor will share her reflections on her first seven years in office, the pandemic, the community’s relationship with the police department and what is left on her to-do list in the July/August issue of Grand Rapids Magazine.

Rockstar’s new equitable push

I’m not a huge energy drink guy, but a new campaign caught my eye this week from Rockstar Energy Drinks. The company is releasing new Aguas Frescas flavors as part of a new Hispanic equity campaign.

“This is a huge moment for Rockstar Energy Drink, which has a long heritage of creating beverages that Hispanics love,” said Fabiola Torres, PepsiCo general manager and chief marketing officer of the energy category. “With this campaign, we applaud those who work tirelessly for their success and give back to their communities to help them succeed.

“This is only the beginning for the brand as we continue to explore innovative ways to expand the energy category and support local communities.”   

World Cocktail Day

While it’s Friday the 13th, May 13 also is World Cocktail Day. At this point, every day is seemingly some sort of made-up holiday aimed at celebrating a beverage or food. But, since we love cocktails in this weekly column, we might as well share one or two.

Dewar’s Lemon Wedge (from Dewars)

  • 5 ounces Dewar’s 12
  • 3 ounces club soda
  • 2 ounces Lemonade

Method: Combine all ingredients over ice, stir.

Bramble 75 (from Bombay)

  • 5 ounce gin
  • .75 ounce lemon juice
  • .75 ounce honey syrup (3 parts honey to 1 part water)
  • 4 ounces Prosecco

Method: Combine all ingredients except Prosecco in shaker, shake hard with ice. Strain into chilled flute and top with Prosecco. Garnish with blackberry.

If you need some local cocktail recommendations tonight, check out Buffalo Trader’s Lounge, SideBar, Max’s South Seas Hideaway or Lumber Baron. All provide some pretty sweet vibes and great cocktails.

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