Archive for Wednesday, November 5, 2003

Food Network tapes segment for show at Vintage Park

November 5, 2003

Vintage Park had the bright lights and cameras from a national television show brighten up the place last Tuesday when the Food Network added a Baldwin stop onto its agenda from filming Lawrence restaurants.

The reason for that was the "Bread Lady." That's Baldwin's Donna Beecham, who goes to Wheatfields every Tuesday to pick up leftover bread, which is then distributed to various outlets.

"Wheatfields gives away the bread every day at the end of business," said Beecham. "The whole point of it is to give it to different charities. I think it's a great thing that Wheatfields does."

Beecham picks up the bread, takes it to the Teen Challenge program which helps bag it up, and then it's distributed to the church food pantry, the Baldwin Thrift store, Heartland Share and Vintage Park.

Beecham e-mailed the cable show about it. Plans were in the works for a trip by the New York based show to film at several Kansas City and Lawrence restaurants. So, the extension was made to Baldwin through the bread tie and specifically Vintage Park Assisted Living because of another connection.

"About a month ago, they called me and made all the arrangements," said Beecham. "The great thing about Vintage Park is a young lady named Erna Holmes, who is 95. She plays bridge in Lawrence every Friday and goes to Wheatfields.

"Her favorite sandwich is the No. 9," she said. "Marc Silverstein, the show's co-host, made up a No. 9 and brought it to her. Erna's eyes just light up about it. It was wonderful. The cameras followed us all the way from Wheatfields to Baldwin. All the Vintage Park residents were playing bingo."

The Baldwin side trip was expected, but the sandwich was a surprise.

"We all knew they were coming to Vintage Park, but she didn't know and I didn't know he was going to bring a sandwich," said Beecham.

The Vintage Park segment will air along with the Wheatfields part of the "Best Of" show which features five different restaurants in four to six months, she said. The Food Network is on at 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday on cable channel 40.

"It was great that a national television show came to Baldwin, Kansas," said Beecham. "They will let me know when it's going to be on."

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