About Susan McKee

Susan McKee

Susan McKee is an independent scholar and freelance journalist specializing in history, culture and travel. She honed her craft as a general assignment reporter for more than a decade at a major metropolitan daily newspaper before fleeing corporate journalism for the peripatetic life of a freelancer.

Susan writes for a wide variety of publications, both print and online. Bylines have appeared in Global Traveler USA, JaxFax, HGTV's Front Door, Global Foodie and Road Trips for Foodies.


Latest Posts by Susan McKee

The Annual Texas Crab Fest in May

April 16, 2015 by  

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texas_crystal-beach_crabMusic, arts and crabs are promised at the 30th annual Texas Crab Fest, set for May 8, 9 and 10, 2015, in Gregory Park, 2292 Highway 87, Crystal beach, Texas.

Feast on fresh local seafood like BBQ crab, crab nachos and crab gumbo. Entry fees from this year’s Crab Gumbo Cook Off benefit the Lone Survivor Foundation’s Crystal Beach Retreat project.

This year’s entertainment lineup features rock, country, blues, conjunto, gospel and Zydeco favorites playing all weekend with bands from all around Texas and along the Gulf Coast.

Also on tap are games and events lsuch as the Crab Legs Contest, Washers Tournament, Two-Step Dance Contest and the Wiener Dog Races, as well as a Kid’s Stage, Crab Arcade, Carnival Midway and Arts and Crafts vendors.

Savor Bowie, A Maryland Food, Wine and Music Festival

April 16, 2015 by  

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maryland_bowie_savor“Savor Bowie”, a Food, Wine and Music Festival, is set for 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 25, 2015, in the Bowie Town Center, 15606 Emerald Way, Bowie, Maryland.

There’ll be complimentary food tastings from local restaurants and wine tastings from more than ten wineries, a multitude of vendors, exhibitors and artisans, and a classic/muscle car show.

The festival will offer two stages of entertainment featuring different genres of music including, jazz, rock, classical, Latin, funk, gospel and other entertainment including dancers, magicians and comedians.

The event benefits Concerts for Causes Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds to give musical instruments to students in underserved communities.

(Video courtesy of Concerts for Causes)

The Sani Resort Gourmet Festival in Sani Greece

April 2, 2015 by  

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greece_sani_gourmet“Cuisines of the World: the Silk Road – Vol 2″ is the theme for the 9th annual Sani Resort Gourmet Festival, set for May 8 to 17, 2015, in Sani, Greece.

Sani Gourmet is an annual gastronomic celebration that brings together chefs from Greece and around the globe, along with some “rising stars”. Each year, Michelin-starred chefs join those at Sani’s restaurants to create contemporary dishes.

Over the ten days of the festival, guests are also treated to a number of workshops, presentations and wine tastings.

Here’s a video about last year’s festival:

(Photo and video courtesy of Sani Resort)

The Ancestral Slaughtering of Pigs in Spain’s Soria

March 24, 2015 by  

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spain_burgos_pigThe slaughter and butchering of a pig is may not be at the top of every tourist’s must see list, but the “slaughter weekends” represent a celebration of the role the porker plays in the Spanish diet.

In the heart of scarcely populated Soria province, a trip to El Burgo de Osma makes for behind-the-scenes visit to this part of Castile-Leon.

On weekends from January 17 to April 12, 2015, the town of Burgo de Osma in the province of Soria, hosts Matanza del Cerdo. This event maintains an ancestral tradition that is deep-rooted in many rural areas of the region, where whole families come together around a table to slaughter a pig. This age-old ritual, which leads to the traditional production of ham, blood pudding, chorizo sausage, pork loin and other cured meats is, at the same time, a day of communion and brotherhood.

The whole process is described and explained to visitors who come to the town for the event. After the slaughter and a visit to the Pork Museum, there is a meal based around pork meat and its many derived products. Folk groups, bagpipe players and a host of local characters make the day even more enjoyable.

(Photo courtesy of Spain is Culture)

Head to South Carolina to See the World’s Largest Peach

March 19, 2015 by  

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Well, yeah. Are you ready to make a detour to see something as, ummmmm, magnificent as the World’s Largest Peach. Right?

Well, it’s not an actual peach, but a water tower on (no surprise) Peachoid Road near Interstate 85 between exits 90 and 92 in Gaffney, South Carolina. It’s reported that fifty gallons of paint were required to create the fruit. Wondering about scale? The leaf is 60 feet long and 16 feet wide.

And yes, trivia buffs, this is the peachoid featured in “House of Cards”.

(Photo courtesy of worlds largest doc)

Provençal Truffle Weekends in Crillon Le Brave France

March 3, 2015 by  

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france_truffle-huntingDates for Provencal Truffle Weekends in France this year are March 5 through 8, 2015, and March 12 through 15, 2015.

Join truffle expert Eric Jaumard (pictured) for a three-day program that includes truffle hunting and a rustic lunch with Eric, a wine visit and tasting at one of Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s wine estates and a truffle cooking demonstration with the chef as well as a drive to the antique capital of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue.

It’s all arranged by Hotel Crillon le Brave Provence, Place de l’Eglise, Crillon Le Brave, France.

(Photo courtesy of Hotel Crillon le Brave)

An Annual Food & Wine Celebration in Charleston South Carolina

February 27, 2015 by  

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southcarolina_charleston_food-wineHeaded to the American Southeast, then check out the Food & Wine celebration in Charleston, South Carolina, which is set for March 4 through 8, 2015.

There are more than 100 events and culinary collaborations over the course of five days. Where does it take place? Mainly in downtown Charleston. The Culinary Village is located in historic Marion Square on the corner of Calhoun and King Streets. Excursions are offered to visit culinary destinations with chefs and industry experts, and most beverage seminars are held at the Culinary Institute.

Participating chefs include “everyone” from Aaron Siegel to Zeb Stevenson. The Culinary Village has “first” and “second” tastings each day.

The event is sponsored by BB&T Charleston Wine + Food, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization which benefits scholarship programs for the culinary and hospitality workplace through the Culinary Institute of Charleston, The Arts Institute of Charleston, and College of Charleston’s Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

(Photo courtesy of Charleston Food + Wine)

Reykjavik’s Food and Fun Festival, Icelandic Style

February 24, 2015 by  

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iceland_reykjavik_food-and-funChefs from the United States, Scandinavia and the rest of Europe will join forces with Iceland’s best restaurants for the Food & Fun Festival set for February 25 through March 1, 2015, in Reykjavik, Iceland’s capital city.

This year’s competitors include Hussein Mustapha, chef de cuisine at Mielcke & Hurtigkarl, a “conceptual gourmet” restaurant in Copenhagen, Denmark; Adam Dahlberg from Adam & Albin Matstudio, a “gastronomic hotspot” in Stockholm, Sweden; Robin Gill of The Dairy and The Manor in London, England, and James Beard Award winner Douglas Rodriguez from the U.S.

Each chef is assigned to one of the participating restaurants, where they prepare a special menu consisting only of Icelandic ingredients. The menu is then presented by the chefs to the public during the festival week. Among the restaurants hosting festival events this year are Dill, Apotek, Kjallarinn, Lava at the Blue Lagoon and Smurstodin.

On the last day of the festival, the chefs compete head-to-head with three courses, again all made solely with Iceland ingredients, such as Arctic char, grass-fed lamb, fresh caught cod and haddock, local plum tomatoes from a geothermal greenhouse, and an Icelandic yogurt called skyr.

Food & Fun 2015 is sponsored by its co-founder Icelandair, The City of Reykjavik, Promote Iceland and Iceland Naturally.

(Photo by Sigurjon Ragnar courtesy of Food & Fun)

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