Kansas Sonic drive-in stores hot dog buns in restroom

I’ve never eaten at Sonic.

I know their goofy TV adverts but I’ve never been inspired to eat there.

Sonic-Facebook-640A photo that went viral on Facebook showing hot dog buns being stored in a Topeka Sonic Drive-in restroom eventually landed in the KSNT newsroom after multiple viewers sent in tips.

Sonic says an employee made an error by storing the bread racks in the restroom for 30 minutes. Upon realizing the error, the manager immediately removed the bread from the location and all bread was discarded. The Franchisee will counsel the employee and give additional training to the entire drive-in staff to ensure proper food safety steps are taken moving forward.”

Sonic and its franchisees primary concern has been keeping their customers safe by serving safe food.

Mr. Stirfry of Topeka corrects food safety problems

When I think stir-fry, I think Mr. Stirfry of Topeka (that’s in Kansas).

According to CJOnline, coming into compliance with Kansas food safety standards has been a tough and expensive road, but Mr. Strifry is back on track, said co-owner Min Lu.

At its latest food safety inspection — May 8 — the restaurant had no violations, chinesebuffetcritical or otherwise. Lu says the buffet is cleaner and more organized than ever.

“It was a difficult lesson,” he said. “We paid a fortune to learn.”

A tour through the large facility, 1700 S.W. Wanamaker, showed vegetables and meat separated in refrigerators, plastic wrap covering each tray, food stored on shelves rather than the floor. Everything is labeled now, Lu pointed out. The restaurant even invested in stickers of the days of the week, so employees know when to throw out food.

Equally important to food safety as correct storage and labeling is changing his employees’ mind-set — to get them to work every day as though the food safety inspector will arrive any minute.

“We prepare for him to come every day,” Lu said.

20 sick: Kansas Mexican restaurant closed after food poisoning; S. aureus suspected

An East Topeka Mexican restaurant and meat market has been forced to temporary close after more than 20 people reportedly became sick after eating its food.

Carniceria Camecuaro, 1016 S.E. 6th, has been closed since Sunday after the Kansas Department of Agriculture advised it to shut down.

Manager Carmen Jaramillo confirmed the restaurant was closed Carniceria CamecuaroTuesday.

“We have done business for seven years. This is the first time we have this kind of problem when some persons became sick from the food,” she said.

Carniceria Camecuaro will remain closed while KDA conducts follow-up inspections and directs potentially contaminated food to be thrown out. The staff also has to undergo further training regarding food safety codes. Depending on how that goes, the establishment could be open within the week, said Charlie Hunt, epidemiologist with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

KDA and KDHE, which handles food-borne illness outbreaks, were advised of the issue Sunday when a local hospital reported at least four people suffering from food poisoning after eating at the restaurant, Hunt said.

Additional complaints have come in, he said, estimating that more than 20 people were affected by the restaurant’s food. Based on interviews, he said, the culprit looks to be the pork carnitas.

Although the investigation continues, the current hypothesis was that the food-borne illness was caused by a bacterium known as staphylococcus aureus, Hunt said.

Topeka changes name to Google, Kansas, in bid to win new fiber cables

I’ve been to Truth or Consequences, New Mexico. Amy and I were driving south through NM on our way to Tuscon, Arizona, and had to pee, so why not in a town that changed its name to honor the NBC radio program in 1950. We stopped in at the local historical society or museum, and were endlessly asked if we were going to stay overnight.

No. Where’s the bathroom.

Topeka, the state capital of Kansas, has changed its name to Google, Kansas, for a month, in hopes to get some new fiber optic cables to replace the stagecoaches.

The unusual move comes as several U.S. cities elbow for a spot in Google’s new "Fiber for Communities" program. The Web giant is going to install new Internet connections in unannounced locations, giving those communities Internet speeds 100 times faster than those elsewhere, with data transfer rates faster than 1 gigabit per second.

As 79-year-old Topeka mayor, Bill Bunten, told CNN, the name change will not be permanent, adding,

"Oh, heavens no, Topeka? We are very proud of our city and Topeka is an Indian word which means ‘a good place to grow potatoes.’ We’re not going to change that."

Do people grow potatoes in Topeka these days?

"I don’t think we grow that many potatoes anymore. The crops we have out here are wheat and corn and soybeans and alfalfa. And, did I say soybeans?"

He’s the first to say outsiders probably view Topeka as "another Midwestern town with not a lot going on," but he’s been making efforts to change that. He’s trying to revitalize downtown with a bar and music scene.

Google would add to all that, making the city more attractive to youngsters, he said.

Now if Manhattan (Kansas) will officially change its name to (Little) Apple, maybe we’ll all get free iPhones.

I am a golden god: Wisconsin boy pets snake, gets Salmonella

If I owned a fake zoo store, like a pet store, I’d probably call it Serpent Safari. Reminds me of the scene in the 2003 movie, Almost Famous, when the lead guitar player goes off to meet real people, in of all places Topeka, Kansas, just down the road, and after doing some acid, a basement-dwelling dude asks the guitar player if he wants to watch him feed a mouse to his pet snake.


Topeka. Real people.

A lawsuit has been filed in Lake County circuit court claiming that a 2-year-old boy contracted salmonella after touching an albino Burmese python.

A lawsuit seeking $50,000 in damages has been lodged against a reptile store and zoo in Gurnee Mills after a 2-year-old boy purportedly contracted salmonella after petting a snake there in December 2007.

Serpent Safari Inc. violated state laws by not providing liquid sanitizer for patrons or having a sign warning of infection risk to children younger than 5 who touch or handle reptiles, according to the complaint, filed Dec. 11 in Lake County circuit court.

Lawyer Michael Maher, who didn’t return telephone messages Tuesday, filed the suit on behalf of Sara Wirtz and her son, Trevor, and Judith Penoyer, all of McHenry County. Without providing specifics, the suit alleges Penoyer also contracted salmonella.

Serpent Safari owner Lou Daddono countered that he’s confident the albino Burmese python that Trevor would have petted did not pass on salmonella. The snake lives at the store and is not for sale.

Daddono, who also denied the negligence claims, estimated more than 400,000 visitors have touched the python without a problem in his 11 years in business. He questioned why it took two years for the salmonella suit to be filed.

Serpent Safari’s lack of sanitizer or signs noting the need for hand-washing after coming in contact with reptiles amounted to negligence, the complaint alleges. More than $50,000 in damages are sought from the business.

Penoyer suffered "severe and permanent illness and/or injuries, externally and internally," says the suit. The complaint states Trevor’s hospital expenses and other medical care will require his mother to pay large sums of money.