Thursday, July 15, 2010
Make the most of your summer with these Chicagoland happenings
• July 1-5: Eyes to the Skies
Spend your Fourth of July weekend gazing at a spectacular display of hot air balloons at Eyes to the Skies in Lisle. Food, fireworks, music, and carnival rides make it an event for the whole family.
• July 3-4: Fireworks Dinner Cruise
Witness a fireworks display like no other while taking a blissful cruise aboard the Odyssey at Navy Pier. Enjoy America’s finest city from the Fireworks Dinner Cruise, featuring live music and delicious cuisine.
• July 9-11: Taste of Westmont
Head to the 15th annual Taste of Westmont for a weekend of food and family fun. This award-winning event features Main Stage entertainment that is free to the public.
• July 10-11: Chicago Folk and Roots Fest
Hear musical acts from the Chicago area and around the world at the 13th annual Chicago Folk and Roots Fest. Join a dance lesson, or just sit back and enjoy the entertainment for people of all ages. Food vendors and kids’ arts and crafts make it an event perfect for everyone in the family.
• August 7: Dog Days at Cantigny
Join other dog owners and lovers at Cantigny for a day spent with man’s best friend. Bring your dog and enjoy a day of activities, visits from rescue organizations, and training demonstrations.
Labor Day at a Glance
• Sept. 3-6: Last Fling
• Sept. 4: Navy Pier Fireworks
Grant Park, www.navypier.com
• Sept. 4-5: Chicago Jazz Festival
Grant Park, www.explorechicago.org
• Sept. 6: Labor Day Turf Showcase
Arlington Park, www.arlingtonpark.com
• Sept. 6: Cubs vs. Astros
Wrigley Field, www.cubs.com
This easy recipe makes for a delicious, high-protein meal in half an hour
• 1 tsp olive oil
• 1 cup finely chopped onion
• ½ cup finely chopped carrot
• 1 tsp dried oregano
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 cup ketchup
• 1 1/12 pounds ground beef (extra lean)
• 1 cup finely crushed saltine fat-free crackers OR breadcrumbs
• 2 tablespoon prepared mustard
• 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
• ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
• 2 large eggs
• cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion, chopped carrot, dried oregano, and mixed garlic; sauté 2 minutes, cool.
Combine onion mixture, ½ cup ketchup, and the remaining ingredients except cooking spray in a large bowl.
Spoon the meat mixture into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Top each with 2 tsp of ketchup. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Makes 6 servings (2 muffins).
Summer Planting & Gardening Tips
Help your spring garden flourish even when the temperatures rise
• Summer is the ideal time for plant containers, both indoors and out. Since the threat of frost has passed, window boxes and patio pots are able to thrive.
• Keep an eye out for pests, aphids, and mildew that thrive in hot temperatures. Pepper wax and other repellants are ideal to keep rodents and deer away as well.
• Heat calls for more watering than is needed in the spring. An estimated inch of water weekly is ideal.
• Be proactive in taking care of weeds, as they will be more caustic to flowers if left unattended to.
• Middle to late summer is a great time to prepare for next season’s gardening. Take notes of when plants ripen, how much rain your garden got throughout the season, and how well each plant fared.
Great Summer Flowers
These sun-loving flowers will brighten up any garden
• Purple Coneflower