#1FamilyFavorites_14649_A_UF-OPTIf you are raising picky eaters, there’s a cooking technique that makes some of kids’ favorite foods – like burgers and nachos – more nutritious while still tasting delicious.


Mushrooms, with their inherent umami flavor, are a perfect addition to blend into meals to increase both flavor and nutrition. Chefs kicked off the trend by blending finely chopped mushrooms with meat for burgers that are flavorful, healthy and Earth-friendly, and now blended burgers are showing up in school cafeterias, supermarket meat counters and fast food drive-thrus.


“Blended entrees like burgers are a win-win-win for families wanting to eat better,” said Dayle Hayes, registered dietitian and founder of School Meals That Rock. “Mushrooms add delicious umami flavor, reduce fat and sodium in many popular dishes and kids love them.”


Another fan of blending is MasterChef Junior finalist and teen chef, Evan Robinson. Robinson likes to blend with multiple varieties of mushrooms in family favorites such as tacos, burgers and stuffed peppers.


“I find that blending mushrooms into some of my go-to recipes helps increase the flavor while reducing the amount of fat and sodium,” Robinson said.


If you’re ready to start blending at home, it can be a simple process for introducing foods to even the pickiest of eaters. Recruit kids as kitchen helpers to tackle tasks such as wiping mushrooms clean and using their hands to blend the meat and mushrooms together.


For more family-friendly, blended recipes, visit


Blended Mushroom Nachos

Recipe courtesy of Chef Evan Robinson

Servings: 4


5          shiitake mushrooms

5          white button mushrooms

1          clove garlic

1/4       cup chopped onions

1          tablespoon Mexican meat seasoning

10        ounces ground turkey


Cheese Sauce:

1          tablespoon butter

1          tablespoon flour

1          cup milk

1 1/4    cups Mexican blend shredded cheese


tortilla chips

salsa (optional)

guacamole (optional)

kale (optional)

romaine lettuce (optional)

tomatoes (optional)

cilantro (optional)

diced red bell peppers (optional)


In blender or food processor, pulse mushrooms, garlic and onions. In large saute pan over medium-high heat, mix finely chopped mushroom mixture with seasoning and cook 2 minutes. Add ground turkey, breaking into fine crumbles until completely cooked through. Set aside.


To make cheese sauce: In medium saucepan over medium-high heat, melt butter then add flour and whisk constantly, breaking up lumps. Stir 2 minutes then add milk and continuously whisk. Stir in cheese and mix with wooden spoon.


Assemble chips on serving platter; spread mushroom-meat crumble on top. Add cheese sauce and toppings like salsa, guacamole, kale, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro and diced red bell peppers, if desired.


A Cooking Technique You Need to Know: Blending


Blending involves mixing finely chopped mushrooms with ground meat for more nutritious, but still delicious, burgers, tacos, meatballs and more.


  1. Chop your favorite mushroom variety to match the consistency of the ground meat. This can be done with a knife or food processor.


  1. Blend the chopped mushrooms with the ground meat.


  1. Cook with Mexican seasoning mix for tacos, marinara sauce for meaty ragu or salt and pepper for juicy, flavorful burgers.


#2FamilyFavorites_14649_B_UFPizza Burgers

Recipe courtesy of Chef Evan Robinson

Servings: 4


1          tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1          medium portabella mushroom, finely chopped

2-3       white button mushrooms, finely chopped

1/2       small onion

1/2       clove garlic

2          teaspoons Italian-style herb seasoning

8          ounces ground beef

salt, to taste

pizza or marinara sauce

shredded mozzarella cheese

hamburger buns


In large pan over medium-high heat, saute extra-virgin olive oil, mushrooms, onions, garlic and herb seasoning approximately 5 minutes until vegetables are soft. Set aside and let cool to room temperature.


Blend mushroom mixture with ground beef. Season with salt, to taste.


Form into four patties and cook in same pan as mushroom mixture to preferred doneness. Top with dollop pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese. Cover pan to melt cheese then carefully transfer to buns.

#5FamilyFavorites_14649_E_UF #4FamilyFavorites_14649_F_UF #4FamilyFavorites_14649_D_UF


FallFestivalPageGet ready to have a rocking and rolling great time at the third annual Fall Music Festival on Saturday, September 14 from 2-9 p.m. at the beautiful outdoor music amphitheater courtesy of the Dorflinger-Suydam Wildlife Sanctuary.

The majestic pines will be swaying to the music, the birds will be happily singing –all of nature wild and free!  A diverse musical lineup donating their time will include O & Co., Gram Baxtr, Ballard Spahr Galactica and Steppin’ Eddy.  Tasty food supplied by Dan Figura Concessions will include cheesesteaks, sausage & peppers, burgers, hot dogs, pierogies, tater tots, fries and fruit cups. Dan will also be donating all proceeds from his water & lemonade sales. So BYOB along with a lawn chair or blanket, relax, eat, sing, dance, meet new friends and know you’re supporting a wonderful cause!


This annual event came about when a group of friends in Wayne County, who all experienced the untimely death of loved ones, found a way to turn their deep pain and grief into something positive.  While leaning on and supporting one another, their shared tragedy inspired them to create an event that would bring people together to honor and memorialize their beloved family members.  These lifelong friends, Jamie Rutherford, Bob Carmody, Todd Stephens, Joe Gombita and Joe Adams realized the best healing therapy besides friendship is music.  And with this camaraderie and wish to give back to the community,  the annual Fall Music Festival was conceived.  This original group has grown exponentially, and as more friends join together, a truly caring team effort has helped them to collectively share a common goal.  That is to literally “grow the goodness”!

The organizers all agree music is a way to connect with each other, has a profound impact on emotional well-being, can trigger memories that transport us back to special occasions and remind us of our loved ones. Also, songs can evoke happy times and help raise our spirits.  “Songs linger forever in both our minds and our hearts, and the healing power of music is real,” says Jamie Rutherford. To these friends the festival represents a way to move forward after times of great sorrow, focus on uplifting experiences with family and friends, and at the same time help to support others in Wayne County, a community their family members all loved and called home.


All proceeds will go to scholarship funds that would have been meaningful to those family members gone too soon and include: The Robert F. Diehl Jr. Fund, Kate Frisch Carmody Fund,  Kelley Lalley Fund, Jerry “Jake” Hopkins Fund, Jake Burkhardt Fund, Mike Chesna Fund, Brian Hunt-Rutherford Fund and Fall Music Festival Music Scholarship Fund.


Tickets to the festival are available from Stephens Pharmacy, Visible Changes, Mane Creations, ReMax Wayne and Jennz Cafe in Honesdale, The Dock at Silver Birches and I.G.A Supermarket in Hawley, the Crossroads in Waymart and Comprehensive Physical Therapy in Forest City. Ticket prices for the benefit concert are $20 pre-buy and $25 at the door the day of the event.

Why not make a day of it?

Between 9:30 and 11 a.m. nature lovers can participate in a walk on one of the sanctuary’s many lovely and pristine walking trails in honor of “Kate’s Wish” to help further research for lung cancer. After the walk, sit back and enjoy the music by Two Chicks, One Guitar from 12:30-1:30 p.m.

The rain date for the Fall Music Festival is Sunday, Sept. 15, from 12-6 p.m.  If it rains on the 15th, it will be moved to the Wayne County Fairgrounds, 4-H Auction Barn.

The Dorflinger-Suydam amphitheater is located at 55 Suydam Drive in White Mills.  Like The Fall Festival on our Facebook page!


WLFPAGEAug19Wally Lake Fest is now in its 10th year celebrating beautiful Lake Wallenpaupack and the surrounding lake region. The last weekend in August promises endless fun for people of all ages with exciting activities and events scheduled August 23rd through the 25th.

Wally Lake Fest honors the “big lake’s” natural scenic beauty and all recreational activities from boating to biking and much more. Some of the fun, outdoor adventures happen right on the lake or beach while others take place in downtown Hawley and other locations near the lake.

Whether riding bikes or sailboats, outdoor enthusiasts can look forward to three full days of all Wally Lake Fest has to offer. There will be the 8th Annual Ride for the Lake with a 41-mile motorcycle ride around the lake, stand-up paddle board and kayak demo, Wallypalooza with live music on a floating stage on the lake, sailboat rides, a sailboat regatta featuring the Paupack Sailing Club, a Boat, Watercraft and Outdoor Show, an open market fair, a Tour de Towpath Bike Ride and much more!

WLF_MarketPic-OPT            Free shuttle buses will run throughout the weekend making a variety of stops in order to make it possible for everyone to get the most out of their Wally Lake Fest experience. Park your car once and take the free shuttle around to many different activities.

Wally Lake Fest is proudly hosted by the Downtown Hawley Partnership and presented by Lighthouse Harbor Marina, Silver Birches, Gresham’s Chop House and the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau. Pick up a Wally Lake Fest brochure at the Lake Wallenpaupack Visitors Center and other area businesses. The brochure lists the complete schedule of events for the entire weekend. Additional details and daily updates are posted on the website as well as Facebook and Instagram @wallylakefest.

Pocono Mountains visitor information is available online at or by phone at (570) 421-5791. Follow @PoconoTourismPR on Twitter to stay current with up-to-date information. Established in 1934, the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is a private, non-profit membership organization. The PMVB is the official destination marketing organization for the four counties of Wayne, Pike, Monroe, and Carbon in Northeastern Pennsylvania.


HotStuffPAGEJuly19AudubonLogoThe Audubon Wildlife Art & Craft Festival has been bringing many of America’s finest nature and wildlife artists and craftsmen, nationally acclaimed wildlife presenters, wildlife rehabilitation centers, and children’s hands-on learning activities to Hawley every July for 35 years. Envisioned to bring awareness of the natural treasures in our area, the tireless efforts of its volunteers, as well as the collaborative efforts with its partners, have made this annual event one of the leaders in environmental education and awareness in the Pocono region today.

Designed originally to bring awareness of nature’s wonders through art and close up encounters with our region’s wildlife, its efforts are now being emulated across the country. Its reputation is such that now many of the top American nature artists are present year after year.

The festival has expanded to include many of the area’s best craftsmen, encouraging demonstration and explanations about techniques, especially for children.

The real jewel of the event, however, is its wildlife and nature presentations. These exhibits and presentations have always been designed for kids, yet the audience is filled with fascinated adults as well. Through the years, children have been able to look eye to eye with some of North America’s most unusual creatures, and have the animals look back… alive, curious, and…well fed.

Over the years many different animals have been featured up close and alive – black bears, cougars, eagles, hawks, owls, vultures and even the American condor have been visitors to the festival, not to mention all the opossums, skunks, raccoons, and the wide variety of snakes, turtles, frogs, and even strange insects. All these creatures have been accompanied by top experts from around the country, ready to answer any questions, and to show what it is like to live the life of these animals.

2019 is going to be no exception to this long history of eagerly awaited NEPA Audubon festivals. Among the 2019 festival highlights are hands-on presentations by the Pocono Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, a nationally recognized center for rehabilitation of injured local mountain wildlife. In addition will be Bill Streeter from the Delaware Valley Raptor Center, a nationally recognized expert on birds of prey. These are two of the Pocono Mountains’ favorites for wildlife enthusiasts. Second Chance Wildlife Center will be presenting as well, with a variety of wild animals recovering so as to be released back in the wild. Additionally, there are presentations and exhibits by other environmental groups.

Sponsored by the Northeast Pennsylvania Audubon Society, the festival helps fund environmental scholarships and conservation programs for schools and community groups. Additionally, the NEPA Audubon Society maintains two wetlands in Wayne County.

The dates of the Audubon festival this year are July 20 & 21. The festival is held at the Wallenpaupack Area High School, an indoor, air conditioned facility, on Route 6 in Hawley, PA. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Plenty of delicious food is available at the event. Admission is $5, and children under the age of 12 years admitted free.



WC Fair logo_4c_bl-optNothing says summer quite like The Wayne County Fair. This year’s fair takes place from August 2nd through 10th at the Wayne County Fair Grounds, on route 191 North in Honesdale PA.

Going strong for 157 years, the fair encompasses all the best rides, one of a kind attractions, thrill shows, grand stand entertainment, games and food galore!

The Wayne County Fair also boasts a huge midway with over 26 big-time rides, kiddie rides, games and  fair food! The midway is also filled with agriculture events like horse, tractor, and truck pulls, kids’ pedal pulls and even a pony pull, plus 4-H club shows, animals all over the north end of the midway, and 4-H competitions.

The grandstand is always full with entertainment too…. monster trucks, car thrill shows, harness racing, fireworks and the popular demolition derby!  There is live entertainment daily, and free grandstand shows that will have you dancing in the aisles, including an Eagles Tribute Band on August 3rd, and on Wednesday August 7th, Terry Lee Goffee, the world’s greatest Johnny Cash experience.

The Wayne County Fair has brought back some entertainment favorites this year, like Dino Roar, the roaming T-Rex, the Black Cat Hell Drivers, Rosaire’s Royal Racing Pigs and Toodles the Clown.  And the fair is proud to be introducing some new excitement into their lineup with Brunon Blaszak’s Royal Tigers Show, featuring both Bengal and Siberian tigers,  Larry the Chain Saw Carver, and a mobile glass studio.

The Wayne County Fair is proud to offer a pay one price model of just $10 per person which includes admission, PARKING, all the rides, all day long, and most grandstand shows.

Senior Citizens Days are just $5.00 per person on Friday, August 2, 2019 and Wednesday, August 7, for those 62 years of age and over.

For more information visit



sidewalk sales 1970 .1Honesdale’s merchants will hold Historic Sidewalk Sales & Artisan Fair starting with merchant & restaurant participation on Thursday, July 18 & Friday, July 19. On Saturday, July 20 and Sunday July 21, Artisan Vendors line the streets with their handmade food and crafts, sponsored by The Honesdale National Bank.

Thursday July 18, 2019 and Friday, July 19- Take two days to browse through the great variety of stores, learn about the wonderful local services, and dine at one of the many area restaurants and cafes. Honesdale has great shops on every block, so wear your walking shoes.

Thursday evening music will be featured in Central Park by Stanky and the Cadets starting at 6:30 p.m. Just some of the stores offering discounts are Antler Ridge Winery & BBQ, Ghiggeri’s Fine Olive Oils and Balsamics, R3 Hardware, Wallflower, Finders Keepers, Arts for Him and Her, WeJo, Fins and Feathers and The Wayne County Library.

Saturday, July 20, 2019 and Sunday, July 21-

In addition to local merchant sales we will have vendors on our sidewalks with handmade soaps, jewelry, crocheted scarves and stained glass, plus chalk couture, all-natural bug sprays, honey and so much more. Saturday evening enjoy the Classic Car Show.

Throughout the entire four (4) days a Restaurant Crawl will be in progress. Participating restaurants will feature one or two appetizers at $5.00 or under for your enjoyment with a chance to win a raffle prize at every stop. Restaurant owners will be drawing winners on Sunday at the conclusion of the event.

We invite you to visit the past and enjoy the great exhibits at the Wayne County Historical Society, located at 810 Main Street. The Museum will be open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and on Sunday noon to 4:00 p.m.

Beat the heat and take a ride on one of the several trains scheduled for the 4-day event which includes Thursday at 10:00 a.m., Friday at 1:00 p.m. or 6:00 p.m. for the Ice Cream Express, Saturday 12:00 noon or 3:00 p.m. Sunday schedule 12:00 noon or 4:00 p.m. for the Dinner & Theatre ride.



ScrantonJazzLogo19On August 2, 3, 4, 2019 the Scranton Jazz Festival will celebrate its 15th Anniversary at the historic Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel and other venues in downtown Scranton with three world class artists as its headliners.

Living legend and four time Grammy nominee Freddy Cole, youngest brother of Nat “King” Cole, will perform with his band on Friday August 2, 2019.

SJFJuly19_Shemekia CopelandMulti-award winning blues artist, Shemeikia Copeland, will take the stage with her highly acclaimed band on August 3, 2019.

Multi-Grammy winning trumpeter and composer, Randy Brecker, will be the guest artist with the Jazz Festival’s 16 Piece Big Band on Sunday August 4, 2019.

Tickets will be on sale April 20, 2019. For tickets, schedules and other information please visit or call 570.575.5282.



Wally Lake FestReady to experience the festival on The Big Lake’s 52 miles of shoreline? With events on and off the water, you’re looking at a lot of ground to cover. Fortunately, celebrations are set in three main festival sections and free shuttles run to these locations on Saturday and Sunday.


Festival Sections

Wally Lake Fest venues are grouped by location. You’ll find hot spots in Downtown Hawley, the North End and the Lake Region.

Downtown Hawley groups the northernmost businesses; those located along Route 6 in town. The Settlers Inn, Hawley Silk Mill, Cocoon Coffeehouse & Catering Company, Mill Market Bakery at the Hawley Silk Mill, Glass – Wine.Bar.Kitchen, Ritz Company Playhouse, and Penny Lane Candies & Candles are there.

North End venues are slightly south of Hawley, along the lake’s eastern shore. Stick to Route 6 between 507 and 590. Points of interest there include Wallenpaupack Scenic Boat Tours, the Lake Wallenpaupack Visitors Center, Palmyra Township Public Beach on Lake Wallenpaupack and the Wallenpaupack Area High School.

The Lake Region begins beneath the North End and curves around the water to Lakeville. It’s where you’ll find waterfront businesses like Silver Birches Resort, Lighthouse Harbor Marina, The Dock on Wallenpaupack and The Boat House Restaurant. Lacawac Sanctuary, Dorflinger Glass Museum and the Lakeville Fire Company are also in this section.

To get the most out of a bash this big, you’ve got to plan in advance. Visit the Wally Lake Fest website or the Wally Lake Fest Facebook page to learn more about daily schedules, activity centers and places to stay.

Plus, pick up our August Issue for more on this great events.


The Black Lillies promo photo‘The Black Lillies’

Known for their captivating blend of rock & roll and country, ‘The Black Lillies’ have become one of Americana music’s biggest success stories; an internationally-renowned band of roots-rockers, armed with songs that blur the boundaries between genres.

Four men. Four friends. Four artists, each of whom could rightly put out a solo record tomorrow, tied together by a bond to something that’s greater than the sum of its parts.

“Going from a six-piece to a four-piece, it’s given these guys space to shine and grow and evolve, and the chemistry has gotten better,” says Contreras, who in another life was the mandolin-shredding bandleader of Robinella and the CCstringband, once signed to both the Columbia and Dualtone labels. “These guys have become not just sidemen or guns for hire; they’re invested. Their opinions count, and their creativity is as much a part of this record as mine. There are songs that I wrote; that Sam (a veteran of the Americana group The Everybodyfields) wrote; that we wrote in any combination and all of us together.

“It’s pretty simple, when you get down to that romantic notion of having a band. We rehearse together, we travel together, we hang out together because we’re dedicated, and I think the music is really showing that now. For me, it’s been years of learning to set your ego aside, but experience teaches you that you have to.”

Making room for other voices in the band was vital in rekindling Quinn’s creative fires. The winner of the 2006 Merlefest Chris Austin Songwriting Contest and a respected solo artist after The Everybodyfields folded, the well had dried up for him back home in Knoxville until a spot opened in The Black Lillies. Working with Contreras, Townsend and then Schaefer, Quinn says, was akin to tossing gasoline on the smoldering embers of his songwriting chops.

“It’s like, when the itch hits, that’s the time to scratch it,” he said. “Office Depot is now my favorite place. I’m always buying paper and pens and destroying them, because I write all the time. Right now, I’m looking at four legal pads, a notebook, a journal and a bunch of stolen hotel paper. It’s a bit of a neurosis, I’m afraid, but I want to be a better writer, and this band is an outlet to become that.”

R&R LOGO8.color(green)The Black Lillies were conceived during a particularly emotional period in Contreras’ life. A divorce, a disassembling of his old band and a 9-to-5 job driving a truck left him with days of turbulent thoughts and nights alternating between pen-and-paper and a guitar to put them into some semblance of order. “Whiskey Angel,” released in 2009, was a springboard to a whirlwind career revival, and within two years, the band had notched several national tours, landed on the hot list of countless publications and appeared everywhere from the Grand Ole Opry stage to the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. Other records — “100 Miles of Wreckage,” “Runaway Freeway Blues,” “Hard to Please” — helped define a sound that was rooted in distinct male-female harmonies, intricate instrumentalism and emotionally charged lyrics that look toward the hope of a new day dawning, regardless of the darkness of broken hearts and bereft spirits.

Around the making of “Hard to Please,” however, the band faced its biggest challenge to date — losing key members, integrating new ones and facing a future that meant changing musical directions. Contreras, however, rose to the challenge, drawing inspiration from some of the titans of the genre in which the Lillies often find themselves categorized: The Eagles and Wilco, just to name a few.

“We think about those favorite records of ours, those masterpiece records, and they’re no filler, all killer,” he says. “We grew up listening to records like that, so we thought, ‘Let’s go for it. Let’s stack it.’ It should be nothing but keepers, and there really shouldn’t be five seconds of, ‘Oh, they didn’t know what to do here.’ Everything should be purposeful.”

When the dust settled, he found himself with the right set of players: Quinn, who won songwriting awards and was once a labelmate of the Avett Brothers during his time in The Everybodyfields; Schaefer, a guitar wizard and a veteran of the Texas alt-country band Mickey and The Motorcars; and Townsend, the youngest member of the band who was brought in on drums in 2015 and has quickly become the group’s veteran anchor.

“We just don’t want to be a throwback band. We want what we do to sound new and fresh and modern.  We’re venturing out from a pure East Tennessee sound, and hopefully that comes through,” he adds.