Tag Archives: ed thorndike

The Hangover Special with Ed Thorndike ‘89

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It’s no secret that Wes Wings is a Wesleyan institution. You might be familiar with ‘Swings because of the arduous pilgrimage you embark on to pick up a Breakfast Pail at Sunday brunch, that time you split an order of 24 wings, or even because of the restaurant’s mastery of social media. It is clear that co-owner Ed Thorndike ’89’s restaurant has left a lasting impression on the Wesleyan community.

On my own visit to Wes as a prefosh back in October 2013, my host, Eli Maskin ’17, had to make the crucial decision of where to take me to dinner. He would essentially define the first impression of Wesleyan for someone pampered by his Jewish mother’s home cooked meals. Of course, we headed to Wes Wings and split an almost unhealthy amount of wings doused in hot sauce and blue cheese. While I probably should have been more concerned with our school’s academic or social reputation, after that initial ‘Swings food orgy, Wesleyan had me sold.

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When Thorndike spoke about how Wes Wings came to fruition, he reminisced on how post-grad struggles with work and relationships coincidentally, and humorously, brought him back to Wesleyan.

Bookstore Relocation Forum Follow-Up: Photos, Video Statements, and More

Ed Thorndike ’89: “Closing is not something that we view as an option.”

Yesterday I liveblogged an open community forum in PAC 001 regarding the proposed Washington Street commercial development and Wesleyan bookstore relocation. Considering recent controversy, I expected to hear some forceful arguments from community members. My expectations were exceeded. If you missed the 90-minute discussion, a quick glance at the liveblog coverage might hint at the passion with which students, faculty, alumni, and Middletown residents spoke out against the proposal. Some of the major complaints addressed traffic concerns, Washington Street safety, threats to local businesses, whether or not downtown really needs national chains, disregard for historic structures, permanent changes to zoning laws, Red & Black Cafe, skepticism towards the developers’ stated desire for “linkage” and “community,” and, ultimately, the character of downtown Middletown itself. Succinctly put, there’s a lot wrapped up in this proposal.

Inspired by many of the voices expressed at the forum, I stuck around afterwards to interview a few of the more outspoken community members. Some brief video statements appear past the jump. They feature two Wesleyan alumni (both of whom live and work in Middletown) and one current professor.

If my reporting seems one-sided—admittedly, I’m no fan of the proposal myself—it’s worth clarifying that of the 150 or more attendees at this forum, not one spoke up in favor of the development. Nobody seemed to like the idea. Nobody seemed to believe it will provide the “linkage” and “community engagement” it’s supposed to offer.

Lunchtime with Mark and Scott: Episode 8 – The Ghost of Weswings Past

A haunting at Wesleyan University? Today, our brave and intrepid lunchers, Mark Popinchalk ’13 and Scott Greene ’13have taken their shenanigans to Weswings. What sorts of delicious and crazy misadventures will our heroes get into this week? Find out!

Lunchtime with Mark and Scott is an ambitious podcast about two college students eating lunch.

Lunchtime with Mark and Scott: Episode 8- The Ghost of Weswings Past by Lunchtime w/ Mark + Scott

Red and Black Cafe reopens

Red and Black Cafe reopened with a fresh start on Monday, after a long summer hiatus due to last semester’s events.

Among the many changes this year are an updated menu, along with brand new seating and lighting:

Red and Black revamped

Notice the “Pace” flag above the counter, which belonged to Johanna Justin Jinich ’10 and is there in her memory.

Red and Black revamped

Great to see the place back in business!  Check out the new RBC when you get the chance.

Thanks to owners Ed Thorndike ’89 and Karen Kaffen-Polascik for the photos.

Dar Williams performs at Wes, sings for Johanna

Dar Williams ’89 performed at Wesleyan last week in the Memorial Chapel during Reunion & Commencement Weekend, and dedicated a special version of her song, “My Friends”, to Johanna Justin-Jinich.

According to the Middletown Eye, the sold-out concert raised over $160,000, which will go towards a scholarship fund in Johanna’s name:

Williams, a Wesleyan grad who is celebrating her reunion year this weekend at the college, spoke about how Justin-Jinich will live on in the friends she has touched, and sang My Friends in her honor. Then she launched into, As Cool As I Am saying it was the song she though Justin-Jinich would want to hear.

Ed Thorndike, one of the owners of the Red and Black Cafe talked about “Yo” as he said Johanna Justin-Jinich was known to friends.

“I don’t want to say things that will make anyone cry,” he said from the stage. “We’ve been crying for the past two weeks.”

Thorndike thanked all those who had show support in the face of the tragedy.