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Thoughts from November 2007

Madchester innocent music club halloween folk night

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Dulcimer, a new bar in Chorlton with “finer ales and finer folk”, put on a bit of a do on Halloween night. As we love a bit of folk and dressing up in the Manchester office (and I am also rather partial to the odd beard), Fiona and I donned our best Halloween get ups and went to check it out. We hovered by the entrance for a wee while as it seemed that not many people had made an effort to dress up, however once inside we were pleased to see plenty of scary looking revellers amongst the blazing pumpkins.

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I reckon the best outfit of the night was Jenny’s, pictured below next to my mate Alyson. She was dressed as a vampire. I’m told that she wears this outfit to festivals throughout the summer, without the fangs I hope.

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Dulcimer is a welcome addition to the burgeoning bar scene in Chorlton. It’s not just the folk and ales that are fine, there are fine wines and some mighty fine music. The bar is run by a lovely chap called Lee Janda (pictured below on the left), part of the B Music trio.

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The hairy orange monster next to him is Andy Votel, who did a superb job playing his weird and wonderful retro grooves at our fete this year. Next to him dressed as the ghost is Dom, also of B Music, and the lovely lady at the end is Jane Weaver. You can experience her sublime melodies live at Dulcimer on Sunday December 2, when she’s playing as part of The Bearded Ladies. I’ll be there, although I must admit I usually prefer bearded blokes.

By our Vic.

a very grand total

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You did it. We've counted all the little hats up and just found out that you helped us to beat our mighty target this year - knitting a whopping total of 400, 720 hats*.

So a massive thank you to everyone who helped knit a hat or two or even 703 - thank you Hazel M. We hope that you're all enjoying a well earned rest now.

If you haven't spotted them yet, the hats are in Sainsbury's stores across the country. And by our calculations we expect that some stores will be sold out within days. Yes that's days. So get one quickly.

* if you're wondering what this might look like, there's only about 9000 in the above photo

facing up to virtual reality

Facebook

Seeing as quite a few people are using facebook these days we thought we'd register our very own official innocent page. You can find it right here (you'll have to be logged into facebook to see the whole page). Add us as a friend if you like, and then come back and visit every now and then to see our updates, news, photos, videos and details of who we kissed at the weekend*.

You can let us know what you'd like to see us do in the mighty world of facebook by leaving a comment in our first discussion topic, creatively titled 'What else should we do with our new facebook profile?'

*Possibly.

climbing to new heights

There was a bit in Sunday's Observer Food Monthly on our acai farmers in the Brazilian Amazon.

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Photos by courtesy of Gary Calton/ eyevine. Great shot Gary, thanks.

All of the acai berries that we use in our smoothies are grown sustainably from palms native to the Amazon estuary. These palms only grow within 25 yards of the Amazon in the mineral-rich tidal wetlands, meaning that they're naturally irrigated twice a day. What's more, our acai supplier is certified as organic, and is working with the acai collectors to preserve biodiversity, address social issues such as adequate nutrition and develop other sustainable local industries, such as making jewellery made from acai seeds.

The acai berries are collected by scaling the acai tree using hemp tape looped around the climber's ankles to give a good grip.

It's easier said than done though, as Rich found out.

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"Just crop the photo below my feet and it will look like I nearly got to the top."

The berries are then threshed from the branch, and placed in baskets for transportation.

If you fancy trying a whole 35 of these hand picked, antioxidant rich acai berries from the banks of the world's biggest river, then why not have a go on our detox superfoods smoothie.