Last year in this blog about this same time of year I lamented that I wouldn’t be able to cook up corndogs and offer them for sale during Luna Pier’s annual Freedom Festival and City-Wide Yard Sale:
In talking to a local restauranteur yesterday, I mentioned selling the corndogs at tomorrow’s sales. What I got back was, “I hope you have a permit!” What it boils down to is this: Just like at Taste of the Nation: Toledo on April 29th at The Docks, any Temporary Food Service Establishment (TFE) requires a local permit from the county health department as per state law. A TFE is defined as, “(A) food establishment which operates at a fixed location for a temporary period not to exceed 14 consecutive days”. The checklist for TFEs in the state of Michigan is located here, and there’s a whole lot a TFE has to comply with.
Well, whaddaya know … I’m on my fourth TFE since early June!
Ok, but here’s the thing: I can’t legally sell corndogs this year. There’s a clause in the beachhouse contract that, since the Freedom Festival is a fundraiser for the Fire Department, I’m not allowed to serve anything they’re making available. And they’re parking a corndog trailer 20 feet from my little place on the beach.
But ya’ know what? That’s fine. With the beachhouse, doing corndogs is inherently unsafe. There’s no vent hood in the place so any “real” cooking has to done outside. And having that much searingly-hot oil near such a major crowd as the city regularly gets that day would make me more than just edgy.
So I’ve ordered enough spare ribs for probably 70 lunchtime servings. Those slabs will get some 15 Million Spice and slow-cook all morning before being BBQ’d on the grill, cut, and served with slaw or potato salad and some baked beans. Our health inspector said Monday she’s kinda sorry she has to miss it!
Lots to do before then! Mayor Mary is spending the week going through literally tons of old stuff in city-owned closets and storage rooms around town, so she’ll be in their tent for the sales till around 2 p.m. Some of the stuff she’s found is actually really cool! Of course, Caleb and I will also have our regular menu at the Luna Pier Dog House the rest of the day as well, and will shut down before the fireworks start at dusk from the concrete pier just outside the front window of the beachhouse.
If you live nearby, Mary, Caleb and I hope you can join us!