The scene early Thursday as firefighters converged on Michael's on Main.
(Via Clay Butler)
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Morning Lookout: Michael’s on Main fire aftermath, theater roundup and delish almond butter

Hiya, Lookout friends! It’s Friday, Sept. 2, and while it’s been a thankfully foggy start in some parts of Santa Cruz County, it’s only getting hotter as we head into the long holiday weekend, with temps ranging from the 70s near the beach to around 100 in the mountains.

Want to cool off with a dip into Lookout’s newest content? Dive right in.
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Meanwhile, it’s a very foodie Friday around these parts. Lily Belli looks at the aftermath of the Thursday fire that gutted Michael’s on Main in Soquel in another packed Eaters Digest, and our Farmers Market Fridays series continues with Thomas Sawano’s profile of the almond butter maestros at Philosopher Food. (Giving you another chance to peruse our definitive guide to Santa Cruz County farmers markets if you haven’t already.)

The local theater scene is cooking, too, and Wallace Baine is along with news from the stage, including a reboot of Actors’ Theatre’s signature small-plays festival and the upcoming season for Jewel Theatre Company. (And don’t miss Wallace’s latest Weekender for recommendations for the weekend ahead and arts and entertainment notes aplenty.)

We’ve also got a Q&A with the CEO of Watsonville Community Hospital as it begins its transition to public ownership, so let’s explore all those Friday headlines.

Fire at Michael’s on Main, Midway chef to open Midtown restaurant and amazing almond butter

Firefighters at Michael's on Main early Thursday.
(Via Clay Butler)

This week, a fire ravaged Soquel restaurant and music venue Michael’s on Main and chef Katherine Stern leaves Bad Animal to open her own restaurant, plus astounding local almond butter and where to get bánh mi and pho. Dig into Lily Belli’s latest Eaters Digest.

SHOPPING LOCAL: Santa Cruz County farmers markets: The definitive guide to locations, vendors and shopping tips (Lookout)

News from the stage: ‘8 Tens’ reboots for fall, Cabrillo Stage seeks next leader & Jewel opens new season

Kristin Brownstone (left) and Alyssa Woodbury rehearse for an “8 Tens @ 8” play.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Actors’ Theatre rebounds from COVID and other turmoil with a different spin on its signature short-plays festival, the search is on for a new artistic director at Cabrillo Stage and Jewel Theatre Company ramps up for its 2022-23 slate. Wallace Baine rounds up the state of theater in Santa Cruz.

DOWN THE LINE: Check out Wallace’s expertly curated guide to all the big events headed our way

DAILY DIGEST

September is definitely off to a busy start, huh? No better way to stay current with all that’s going on around Santa Cruz than bookmarking Lookout and and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram — don’t miss all we’ve got up our sleeves.

Actually, I lied. There is an even better way to keep up with the local scene, and that’s by becoming a Lookout member. Our trustworthy local journalism isn’t possible without some community help, and you can support Lookout and our Civic Partners by joining, so please consider a membership if you don’t have one already — and tell a friend about what we’re doing.

Have a great Friday and a safe, relaxing Labor Day weekend — stay cool, pack your trash and I’ll see you all back here Tuesday!

Will McCahill
Lookout Santa Cruz