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December 21 Random Observations Of The Grand Lake Bum

When the decisions are made to cancel the Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans and to move the Rose Bowl from Pasadena, California to Arlington, Texas, you know there is nothing else left that could make 2020 any more crazy. Oh, wait! How late can bars and restaurants be open New Year’s Eve? 11:00 p.m.? 2:00 a.m.? Back to 11:00 p.m. maybe? The back-and-forth of Covid-19 protocol orders is so confusing I can barely figure out what time I can drink. I’m sure glad I don’t own a bar. I can’t imagine planning in a pandemic when nobody will really know the rules until the day before New Year’s Eve.

So, here’s the current situation: In November, Governor Kevin Stitt ordered all bars & restaurants closed at 11:00 p.m. Late Friday, December 18, Judge Susan Stallings granted a temporary injunction, and law enforcement agencies said they would not enforce the 11:00 p.m. ban until the issue is decided finally. Judge Stallings set the hearing to make a final decision for 9:00 a.m. December 30. So…sometime the afternoon of December 30, we may all find out whether clubs can stay open late enough to ring in the New Year the next night or not!

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Grand Lake’s reigning Queen of Creativity has figured out the perfect solution to the hours-of-operation uncertainty. Joyce Duke is hosting a “Puerto Rican New Year Party” at Big Shots Rhythm & Booze. That New Year’s Eve Party will be about all things Puerto Rican – including the time! When it’s midnight in Puerto Rico, it will only be 10:00 p.m. on Monkey Island – so that’s when 2020 will get shoved out the door – two hours early. If the courts decide bars can stay open until 2:00 a.m. that night, Joyce says, “that’s fine – we’ll just get rid of 2020 twice!”

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Despite all the uncertainty, good things are happening this week. Yes, COVID-19 vaccines are now being distributed. Great. Yes, Friday is Christmas. That’s great, too. But for those of us who enjoy the outdoors, there’s a bigger event to celebrate. The Winter Solstice arrived this week. My pal Arnie is technically mistaken when he says “the days start getting longer now.” The days will still consist of 24 hours, just like always…but effective Monday, December 21, we’ll start having a little more daylight in each and every day. Enjoy. Merry Christmas!

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I didn’t plan properly for Christmas. Who knew you could get federal government financing for a new boat? NFL icon Tom Brady somehow was awarded a PPP loan of almost a million dollars from the federal government to “help support small business.” I guess it ultimately worked out. The “small business” he bought his new yacht from the next week benefited, I’m sure. I’m surprised that Tom couldn’t figure out a way to pay for the new custom yacht out of his $25 million annual salary from the Tampa Bay Bucs, but if budgeting was a problem, I would think he could have gotten a little money from his wife. She’s worth more than he is. But, if the government will help, what the heck? He’s playing in Florida now, so obviously he needs a yacht!

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What is it about holidays that inspires terrible beverage recipes? I saw a restaurant promo the other day for a “Peppermint Patty Candy Cane Martini.” I thought and thought about what could possibly be worse holiday drink idea than that. All I could come up with was eggnog & gin – but I didn’t have the nerve to actually try either one.

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Just in time for Christmas, Congress finally agreed on another Covid-19 financial assistance package – and it only took them seven months! The new legislation provides for extension of unemployment benefits, including an additional $300 per week, as well as PPP assistance for struggling businesses. It even includes another payment to financially strapped individuals – a whoping one-time payment of $600. That’s on top of the $1,200 they allowed everyone last Spring. Woo-hoo! $1,800 for the year. That’s plenty to get by on, right? For the record, that’s equivalent to about 21 hours of pay for the average member of Congress.

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DINING AND DRINKING UPDATE: The Shebang Restaurant on Monkey Island will be closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Christmas Eve, Grand Lake Public House will be open until 7:00, and the Summit Restaurant will be open until 8:00. Both restaurants will be closed Christmas Day. Doc’s Bar & Grill will be closed Christmas Day. Grand Lake Public House is now open for lunch at 11:00 in addition to dinner service. Sunday Brunch is offered to the public at Doc’s Bar & Grill (9:00-2:00) and Mulligans at Patricia Island (10:00-2:00). The Café at Har-Ber Village is open year-round (8:00-4:00).  The Quarterdeck Café at Tera Miranda is now closed for a couple of months, but will reopen February 12. Mooney’s Bar & Grill will be closed until January 1 for painting and maintenance; and the Grill at Indian Hills is closed until January 2.

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BEST EVENTS OF THE WEEK:  The official "Winter Solstice Party" starts at 4:00 this afternoon (Dec. 21) at The Shebang. Thursday night is Christmas Eve Karaoke with KJ Flip at Blind Swine. The Winter Wonderland Christmas Light Display is open nightly at Pine Lodge Resort, the Twin Bridges Park of Lights is now open near Wyandotte, and The Casitas at Grand Lake also has a great light display.

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BEST WEEKEND LIVE ENTERTAINMENT: KJ Flip leads the Christmas Eve Karaoke fun at Blind Swine Thursday night Terry Jordan entertains at the Summit Restaurant at Shangri-La Saturday night.. Erin Fitzgibbon will perform next Tuesday (Dec. 29) at Blind Swine.

Indigo Sky Casino this week presents Wilkie Jay Christmas night in the Echo Bar, followed by Trickbag Saturday. Encore will perform Friday night at Downstream Casino’s Legends Sports Bar. Mr. Lucky will be on stage Saturday night. At Cherokee Casino Grove’s 1897 Bar, The Uncrowned Kings will entertain Friday night, followed by the Rod Robertson Band Saturday.

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RANDY KREHBIEL’S RANDOM FACTOID OF THE WEEK: The card game beggar-my-neighbor is also known as strip Jack naked and beat your neighbor out of doors.

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FUN FACT OF THE WEEK: There wasn’t any skepticism about Pfizer’s work when they introduced Viagra.

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BEST FACEBOOK POST OF THE WEEK: Santa has been reading your posts all year. Most of you are getting History and Civics books and spelling & punctuation guides.

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BEST SIGN SEEN THIS WEEK: Welcome to “My Backyard Bar & Grill” featuring – whatever you brought.

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TWEET OF THE WEEK: Just deep fry that vaccine, and I promise folks in Oklahoma won’t ask what’s in it.

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BEST PUN OF THE WEEK: Ordering Chinese take-out - $8. Tip - $2. Getting home and discovering your order is incomplete – Riceless.

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OBSERVATION OF THE WEEK: Who would have thought that one day we’d be smoking weed at a family gathering – and the illegal part would be holding the family gathering?

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FEEL-OLD MOMENTS OF THE WEEK: Jose Feliciano’s bilingual Christmas Classic “Feliz Navidad” celebrates the 50th anniversary of its original release this year. Happy birthday to Hollywood icon Dick Van Dyke who turned 95 years old last week.

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GRAND LAKE BUM SHOUT-OUTS: Happy birthday wishes go out this week to Sam Rader, Pat Jurgensmeyer, Kai Redus, Jeff Silvers, Nancy Wyatt, Chandra Farmer, Barbara Staten, and Barbara Smith. Special congratulations to Judy Bradley and Linda DuBois, recipients of the Playmakers Artistic Executive Legacy awards for their leadership at Playmakers over the last 25 years. Both are also past recipients of the Oklahoma Community Theatre Association’s Bravo Awards for service “above and beyond.”

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UNANSWERED QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Can we still put out cookies and milk for Santa, or is that considered inside dining?

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BUM MUST-SEE TV: The new highly acclaimed series Bridgerton premiers Friday on NETFLIX. The Masked Dancer debuts Sunday night at 7:00 on Fox as a sequel to The Masked Singer.

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BUM MUST-SEE MOVIES: There are traditionally great movie releases at Christmas and, in the case of movies, 2020 is no exception.  News of the World, Wonder Woman 1984, and Pinocchio are among movies released to theaters this week. Wonder Woman is also available on HBO Max.  The Midnight Sky and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom are great ones available on NETFLIX. One Night in Miami is available on Prime Video, and Soul is on Disney+.

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QUOTE OF THE WEEK: “The worst gift is a fruit cake. I really think there’s only one fruit cake in the entire world, and people keep sending it to each other.” – Johnny Carson

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SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, December 31 – Puerto Rican New Year’s Celebration at Big Shot’s Rhythm & Booze (8:00-11:00 p.m.). Thursday, December 31 – New Year’s Eve Roaring 20s party at Monkey Island Pub. Thursday, December 31 – New Year’s Eve celebrations at Blind Swine, Road Hog Saloon, Pickles on the Lake. Thursday, December 31 – Members Wine Dinner at The Summit at Shangri-La. New Year’s Eve Prime Rib Dinner/party at Mulligan’s at Patricia Island. Thursday, January 14 – Grove Chamber Connection Membership Luncheon at Grove Community Center (11:30). Sunday, January 24 – Official opening online of the 2020 Tulsa Virtual Boat Show. Monday-Sunday, February 1-7 – Tulsa Boat, Sport & Travel Show.

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SPORTS WATCH: The college football Bowl Season is officially underway. Check your local listings, as they say. There’s a bowl game about every three hours from now through January 2. We should all be pretty darn proud that all three of Oklahoma’s major teams are in great bowl games for 2020.

The NFL season heads into week #16 with The Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints getting the weekend started Christmas night at 7:00 on Fox.  There are three rare Saturday games this week, as well – Tampa Bay at Detroit at noon, San Francisco at Arizona at 3:30, and Miami at Las Vegas at 7:15, all exclusively on NFL Network. Sunday games include Atlanta at Kansas City (noon on Fox), Cleveland at the New York Jets (noon on CBS), Philadelphia at Dallas (3:30 on CBS), and Tennessee at Green Bay (7:00 on NBC). Monday Night Football features Buffalo at New England (7:00 on ESPN).

The NBA regular season gets underway this week. The OKC Thunder regular season opener is Wednesday, December 23 at 7:00 against the Rockets in Houston. Saturday, they’re in Charlotte at 6:00. Their home opener is Monday, December 28 hosting Utah at 7:00, followed the very next night by a home game with Orlando at 7:00. All games are on Fox Sports Oklahoma.

PGA players are on holiday break. The next PGA Tour event is the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii January 7.

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After an unbelievably fabulous start to the week, the weather for the holiday week is on a bit of a downhill slide – but not too bad for December, right? For Christmas weekend, we’ll have sunshine, light winds, high temperatures pushing 50 and lows in the 30s. At least until a court hearing December 30, bars can stay open until 2:00 a.m. – so enjoy your holiday…but remember, wherever you party, be sure to buy a drink for the guy next to you. It could be me! Merry Christmas!!

GRAND LAKE BUM

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Looking for places to go, things to do, services to use or property to buy in the Grand Lake area?  Here’s a starter kit listing of “open to the public” fun places to spend time at Grand Lake.

Ailey’s Café in Langley

Artichoke Restaurant & Bar in Langley

Balcony Bar at The Shebang (Smoking – open Friday & Saturday nights)

Big Shots on Monkey Island (Open Friday & Saturday nights)

Blind Swine on Monkey Island

Blue Bluff Café at Blue Bluff Harbor

Buffalo Bar at Shangri-La on Monkey Island

Buffalo Run Casino in Miami (smoking)

Café at Har-Ber Village

Café Yum in Grove

Cesar’s Place in Vinita

Cesar’s Place in Langley

Checkered Past in Grove

Chickanella’s in Grove

Chicken Coop West of Langley

Clanton’s Café in Vinita

Copper Penny Bar in Ketchum

Coppers Tea & Coffee House in Grove

Cosby’s Catfish on Highway 28 in Eucha (East of Disney)

Doc’s Bar & Grill at Shangri-La Resort Hotel

Docks Bar at Harbors View Marina

Domino’s in Grove

Downstream Casino in Quapaw (smoking)

Drake’s on the Lake at Blue Bluff Harbor

Drake’s Restaurant in Grove

Eddy’s Lakeside Bar at Shangri-La Marina (smoking)

Gabby’s Place in downtown Grove

Goodfella’s Pizza (Cleora and Grove)

Grand Lake Casino, north of Grove on Highway 10 (smoking)

Grand Lake Public House in Grove

Hatfield’s Saloon in Grove

Henrie’s Grill in Grove

High Winds Casino east of Miami (smoking)

Honey Creek BBQ in Grove (south of Honey Creek bridge)

Indigo Sky Casino west of Seneca, Mo. (smoking)

Juan Montez Restaurant & Cantina at Red Arrow Marina

La Casita de Martin in downtown Grove

Lighthouse Supper Club in Ketchum

Los Garcias in Langley

Lupe's Mexican Restaurant in Grove

Marina’s Place at Littlefield Corner

Matt’s Place in Grove

Monkey Island Pub (Smoking)

Mooney’s Sunset Bar & Grill in Disney (smoking, etc.)

Monkey Island Trail Rides

Monkey Island Winery

Mulligan’s at Patricia Island Golf Club in Grove

Nu Taste Restaurant in Grove

Pappy’s Bar on Hwy 10 east of Grove

Pickles at the Lake in Langley

Pit Stop Café in Grove

Quarterdeck Cafe at Tera Miranda Harbor (smoking on the deck)

Raggedy’s in Grove

Rancho Viejo in Grove

Riggs & Company in Langley

River Bend Casino in Wyandotte (smoking)

Road Hog Saloon at the entrance to Monkey Island (smoking...but not at lunch)

Rusty Anchor (next to the cliffs at Dripping Springs)

Sharky’s at Hammerhead Marina (smoking)

Stuffn’s Restaurant in Ketchum (Smoking on patio)

Summit Restaurant at Shangri-La on Monkey Island

The Grill at Indian Hills Resort & Marina in Bernice

The Landings Market and Grill on Monkey Island (smoking on the patio)

The Parrot at Honey Creek Landing in Grove (Smoking on the patio)

The Pouhouse at The Regatta in Grove

The Stables Casino in Miami (smoking)

The Shebang on Monkey Island (smoking on patio and Balcony Bar)

Ugly’s Grill & Bar, Thunder Bay Marina (smoking)

VIP Pizza at Hammerhead Marina (smoking on deck)

Water Side Bar & Grill in Grove

Waterway Café, Harbors View Marina (smoking on breakwater dining deck)

Wolf Creek Diner in Grove

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