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Providing Sunshine For Humboldt Park…Hispanic "Delights' On Westcott Street… Puerto Rican Talent Search Creates Competition Onstage And Off

Providing Sunshine For Humboldt Park

Allan Johnson

January 4, 2004
Copyright ©2004 Chicago Tribune. All rights reserved.

There's a cozy, homespun feel to Cafe Colao in Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood, with the restaurant's intimate seating for 22, work from Puerto Rican artists on its walls and in its cabinets and the enticing smells of bread and other baked goods from its kitchen.

"That's what I wanted to create," said owner--and waitress--Wanda Colon, who greets regulars and first-timers alike with a warm familiarity, enhanced by her open, calming smile.

Colon relishes running her own business, the goal of a journey that led her to open the cafe-bakery at 2638 W. Division St. 1 1/2 years ago.

The Humboldt Park native spent 15 years managing boutiques along Michigan Avenue before entering the non-profit industry, working for an HIV-AIDS organization in her community for four years, then volunteering in politics. That included working with U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) for three years.

After all that, Colon felt it was time to "make a career change."

"There isn't a bakery here in Humboldt Park, so basically I saw the need," Colon said about a restaurant in the space that had previously closed.

Cafe Colao specializes in coffee and pastries from Puerto Rico as well as sandwiches featuring Puerto Rican spices and a softer type of French bread, "stuff that people unfortunately aren't able to go to the island" to get, Colon added.

But it's the feeling of fashioning a neighborly meeting spot that makes Colon proud: "I'm just glad that I'm able to provide a homey type of a place where people can come and gather . . . and feel comfortable like if they were in their own home."

Hispanic "Delights' On Westcott Street

Margaret McCormick, Food editor

January 7, 2004
Copyright ©2004 Bell & Howell Information and Learning Company. All rights reserved.

The Post Standard/Herald-Journal

Rodriguez Francisco has opened a second Las Delicias restaurant, at 550 Westcott St., Syracuse.

That gives the funky neighborhood, within walking distance of Syracuse University and home to pizza parlors, sub shops, a diner, a Middle Eastern restaurant and a Chinese restaurant, a taste of something different: foods native to the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.

Note: Tiny Alto Cinco serves a fusion of Mexican and California tastes a few doors way.

Las Delicias, which means "the delights," offers an eat-in and take-out menu of Hispanic comfort foods, such as habichuelas (rice and beans) and guisados (stews) made with beef, chicken, pork and goat meat.

Las Delicias served its "delights" to a large audience last year in the Pan-African Village at the state fair.

Francisco opened his first restaurant, at 719 S. Geddes St., Syracuse, in 1998. It's across the street from Don Juan Cafe Restaurant , 102 Grand Ave., which also serves Puerto Rican fare.

Puerto Rican Talent Search Creates Competition Onstage And Off

Magaly Morales

March 15, 2004
Copyright ©2004 South Florida Sun-Sentinel. All rights reserved.

It is commonly said that in Puerto Rico, even the stones can sing.

TeleFutura will now have a chance to showcase the island's vocal ability as it premieres Objetivo Fama, a talent search program that has taken Puerto Rico by storm.

Objetivo Fama premieres Sunday, featuring 18 aspiring singers who will compete for a recording contract with Univisión Music.

During the course of 13 Sundays, the contestants will perform live in one of Puerto Rico's newly renovated theaters.

Throughout the competition, the participants, who will remain isolated inside a camera-laden house, will receive singing and dancing lessons.

Each week, Latin artists will join the contestants on stage, performing their latest hits and offering motivation.

They include Paulina Rubio, Gilberto Santa Rosa, Victor Manuelle and Alexandre Pires.

At the end of each two-hour show, a celebrity panel will nominate two contestants for elimination, but it is the viewers who ultimately decide who leaves the house by voting via phone calls.

Produced by Soraya Sanchez for Univisión Puerto Rico, Objetivo Fama is hosted by Nicaraguan salsa singer Luis Enrique and Daniela Droz.

Objetivo Fama airs Sundays at noon on WAMI-Ch. 69.

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