Downtown Eau Claire’s biggest festival all year long – the International Fall Festival – is set to pop off on Saturday at 10am. (The international community has been fully alerted.) If you’ve never been, it’s pretty cool. They shut down Barstow Street and turn it into a pedestrian mall where you can peruse all sorts of international food stands and international merchants. There’s an international stage with performances all day (including some totally sweet international clog action), a petting zoo, and a big ol’ parade.
Make sure you stop down to 17 S. Barstow and say hi – Volume One will have a booth in front of the office and we’ll have lots of local books and music on sale.
Also on Saturday: Autumn Alleycat '08 for the bikers, HallieWood Pub Crawl for the drinkers, Konquer The Kage for the fighters, The Gentle Guest for the raucus moonshiners, 3rd Annual Eau Claire Hip Hop Invasion for the DJs, and Drunk Drivers for the rawkers.
We’d like to use this post as a place to discuss the poll in general – so please leave a comment here if you have something to say about it. We’re listening.
OK, last year’s Best of the Chippewa Valley reader poll was long. Very long. Many of you asked it to be shortened. But we didn’t feel we could shorten it without cutting out tons of important stuff. So we kept it long but found a polling system that would allow you to just vote on whatever you wanted, whenever you wanted, without having to complete a giant form.
We also wanted to keep things open-ended like last year, allowing you to write in your own answers. Allowing other people to vote on your responses seemed like a great addition. So Yayboo.com fit the bill. We knew there would be a few kinks in how it works, and that some responses would battle back and forth for placement, but there are comparable kinks in all polling options.
Most of the negative feedback we’ve heard comes down, directly or indirectly, to the polling results being visible in real time, and how voters (especially businesses) react to that. Despite the obvious problems, we still stand behind the openness of the poll. We didn’t expect the level of tampering seen in certain categories, but we’ll deal with it.
Given that Yayboo.com is our polling system this year, and that we stand behind it, here’re some specific comments:
Please let us know what you think about all this by commenting on this post.
Former local man Matt Banker stopped in front of “The Bird’s Nest” at the 2008 Bejing Olympics this August while wearing his Volume One T-shirt! Matt is an artist and youth director for an international church in Bejing, where he currently lives with his wife Kara.He sent along his Olympic wishes with the photo: “Mei guo! Jia you!” (America! Step on the gas!).
I took this at the 4th of July event at Carson Park. They have a bunch of houses and buildings you can look through to get a glimpse of life in the "good 'ol days". Looking at the blackboard, I don't know how good a student I would have been back then. Note the kid running away from his grandma for extra irony.
Can you think of a better way to celebrate your wedding than throwing a knife at your son’s friend who is duct taped to a chair? I can! From the Chippewa Herald:
I guess Willi hasn’t heard of the Dollar Dance or, like, throwing a bouquet or something. Is this a family of FBI agents or what? Zing!
Driving home from work last night, snaking around the street construction on Farwell Street, I was listening to Mary Jo Wagner (that little minx) chatting with Mike Schatz and Geoff Moeding about the new Phoenix Parkside construction in downtown Eau Claire. They were talking about downtown in general when “Bruce from Chippewa Falls” called in to comment on the state of downtown’s streets. He said the streets are horrible.
The streets are not pristine, not by a long shot. But “horrible?” Maybe Bruce was born in a city paved in layers of smooth, solid gold (where guys named "Bruce" are treated like rockstars). Not sure. At any rate, there seems to be a horribly large pile of people around here absolutely obsessed with street conditions. What gives? I’m no fan of potholes, but I rarely find a street I’d call “horrible.” I guess beautiful roads are a sign of a community with high self esteem, and that’s cool, but if the streets are a little bumpy, um … drive slower?
Local man John Berthold visited the Arctic Freaking Circle and snapped a chilly pic with Volume One from Latitude 66° 33'N.
Volume One Reader/Distribution Guy Nate Dimit recently visited Japan as a part of Memorial High School's Japanese program and snapped this pagoda-laden picture on Miyajima island, near Hiroshima.
This handsome young Volume One reader lives over in Minnesota. Nice shirt, eh?
Steph Birr on a trip to Portland, Oregon. She says, “This one is me with what appears to be the Silver Surfer after he burnt out and has to perform on the streets.”