Eat: We can think of no better way to lead off our first "Eat, Stay, Explore" feature of the year than Fat Freddie's. Since August, Fred Rice has operated his business, Fat Freddie's Gourmet Hot Dogs, inside the Hole 'N One Convenience Store at 25 Madison Ave., Sturgeon Bay. Fat Freddie's offers Boar's Head brand hot dogs.
The hot dogs are offered "Chicago style" in a Mary Ann's brand poppyseed bun and (you know the drill, Chicagoans) topped by relish, mustard, onion, tomato, pickle spear, sport peppers and celery salt.
If you prefer ketchup on your hot dog, try the "regular" hot dog. Also available are the chili cheese dog, Fred's homemade chili, home-cut fries and much more. Fat Freddie's is open year-round (11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday) and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday). There is space to sit down and eat inside, and Fred, who loves his work, is a true delight to be around.
"Hot dogs are a guilty pleasure. I think it's a comfort thing. It reminds us of our youth. And they are quick and easy," Fred said. "People just like hot dogs."
Stay: We reviewed the Reynolds House, 111 South 7th Ave., about two years ago for DoorCountyNavigator.com and want to remind readers of this bed and breakfast as it is a wonderful place to spend a cozy winter night or two or three.
The inn is located on the corner of Michigan Street and 7th Avenue in a residential part of Sturgeon Bay. It's walking distance to Sturgeon Bay shops, museums and galleries, yet situated in a quiet area. You'll recognize it by its Victorian turn-of-the-century architecture with a wide front porch.
Once you go inside, you'll get a tour of the interior which has original architectural features such as lighting, leaded glass windows, oak trim and fret work.
There are three guest rooms and a private suite. Each accommodation has a private bath, cable television, DVD/VCR. Choose from the Granny Smith Guest Room (spacious and bright), the Cortland Guest Room (it has a Franklin stove), the Macintosh Guest Room (with whirlpool tub) and the Winesap Suite (on the upper level of the inn and offering three rooms for you to spread out).
Heather Hull, the innkeeper, is personable and intriguing and a great cook who has even won awards for her culinary skills. So, don't miss breakfast at the Reynolds House.
The inn is open year-round and packages are often available. More information is available at www.doorcountynavigator.com.
Explore: The 24th annual Fish Creek Winter Festival will take place Feb. 4 to 6 in Fish Creek, of course. Games will take place outdoors and under a heated tent.
A human foosball game will make its debut this year. Eight teams consisting of six members each will face off on the ice rink off Clark Park. The idea is that rows of players, attached to a pole along a cable, will be able to move together to send the ball into the goal. Hmmm.
Also, food and beverages will be available during the Festival. More information is posted at fishcreek.com.