Martinfest generates another year of fun

Gather round for Martinfest.

Gather round for Martinfest.

Year three of Martinfest was not bigger in the numbers sense.

The oh-so-cold and you-gotta-be-kidding-me snow just may have kept some folks away from the private get-together in the Syracuse city parking lot across the street from the official Winterfest.

But the Martins — sister Michelle, brothers Scott and Kevin and cousin Jason — were going as strong as ever as hosts of this grand party of family and friends, and their spouses and significant others and most-important friends were out to have a darned good time. Because winter around these parts is hard, always, and a party is a good way to get over the portion that’s past and know that less than that is ahead before spring arrives.

Jason Martin proudly models this year's Martinfest T-shirt.

Jason Martin proudly models this year’s Martinfest T-shirt.

The Martins provided another round of beautiful Martinfest T-shirts, too. My dear wife Karen and I love ours. They made it easier to employ the layered look. I wore mine as the third. T-shirt, long-sleeved T, Martinfest T, winter jacket. I never took the jacket off to display my colors. Perhaps another layer underneath, a hoody, would have done it.

Now this is a power party.

Now this is a power party.

This year’s big addition was a generator under the table of food that made sure the hot dog table kept the dogs spinning. No kidding.

To cook and to warm. No fish were harmed in the taking of this photograph.

To cook and to warm. No fish were harmed in the taking of this photograph.

I also liked the two coal grills that burned through the hard-packed barking lot snow down to the blacktop underneath. They reminded me of holes cut out of lakes for ice fishing, and I kept my eye out for jumping fish.

My dear wife Karen’s contribution this year was a Box ‘o Joe from Dunkin’ Donuts and a bottle of Bailey’s Irish Cream for those who chose some extra warmth. We also stopped by 7-Eleven for a can of squirty cream for more embellishment.

Bring something, eat and drink what you wish.

Bring something, eat and drink what you wish.

My personal eats list included one chicken finger from the deep fryer, one hot dog from the spinner, one red solo cup of mac salad, one stuffed cherry pepper popper, and one handful of green olives from a huge jar that was earmarked for Bloody Marys that may have been made after we walked over to Hanover Square to visit the official Winterfest so I could write my weekly community blog for Syracuse Public Media site You can read my column by clicking the link below.

Cup ‘o Joe with or without the Bailey’s? Hot dog, chicken finger or both? Have you attended a winter outdoor party that’s lasted several hours, and how many people do you think you could fit around two coal grills?

28 thoughts on “Martinfest generates another year of fun

    • It was indeed Jameson. I did not partake. I was working, running across for Winterfest duties for my column, and whiskey and writing do not mix for me, Benson. Others seemed to be enjoying the warming effects of that bottle greatly. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  1. i love this! joe with baileys, hot dogs and chicken fingers – we had an outdoor tailgate for the outdoor hockey games and they were a blast, a cold blast, but a blast none the less )


  2. Thanks so much for coming out in the cold to celebrate with the Martins! Always nice to have Karen & you there. The Baileys and coffee was a definite hit!! Love your account of the day! I keep telling my brothers and cousin we need to do one in the summer! Cold or not you know us Martins are in for the long haul. I think my feet are still cold from Saturday and then wing walk on Sunday.


  3. so the Martins are neighbors/friends? Whoever they are, they are extremely cool folk to have a fest named after them πŸ˜‰ You know where I stand with the Bailey’s. And you get major points for the aerosol whipped cream. (FYI: Trader Joe’s has the best I’ve tasted)

    Last winter was more miserable cold than this one and we have friends who had a bonfire the day it went over zero. Because that was a huge accomplishment. I spent some of the time indoors (with red wine), but did brave the bonfire area for a bit. Mostly that was the men’s domain. Go figure. Oh, and I’ll pass on the hot dog and chicken finger and just have another Bailey’s with whipped, please.


    • The Martins are our friends, Liz. Michelle works at SMG with Karen (and was at the paper with me, naturally). You read about her when she invited Karen and I to the soft opening for her second job at Cathy’s Corner Cafe, right?

      We met Scott and Kevin, her brothers, through her, and then cousin Jason, as they started Martinfest three winters ago as their own idea to liven things up around here. Great idea, no?

      Red wine would have had me out by the bonfire in Minneapolis, for sure.

      Bailey’s with whipped is pretty awesome, coffee or straight-up. Yup.


  4. You guys don’t let those artic temps interfere with your busy lives! I’m so impressed. Baileys and Joe for me as well. No feathers or dogs, but I will take some extra cream in that cup of Joe plz. You guys are smiling in these pictures too! Must be the whisky. Xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

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