Sep 11, 2009

Soule Restaurant: Biology or Basketball?

It’s Back to School time!

The “!” might be a bit too enthusiastic for many back-to-schoolers, but there’s a good way to get your kids back into the groove.

Extracurricular activities.

There are many who believe that extracurricular activities distract children from their studies, which is where the “dumb jock” stereotype originated.

Studies show, however, that children who participate in extracurricular activities tend to perform better than nonparticipants, and nurture a more favorable outlook towards school.

Sports and Fine Arts promote citizenship and sportsmanship, as well as instilling a sense of pride in community while teaching the value of teamwork and self-discipline.

They provide a channel for reinforcing the lessons learned in the classroom, and allow students the opportunity to apply academic skills in a real-world context with regard to responsibility, competition, diversity, and a sense of culture and community.

Studies that focused on the U.S., as well as individual states including New York, Wyoming, Indiana, New Mexico, Colorado, North Carolina, and Texas all reached similar conclusions: Students who participate in activity programs tend to have higher GPAs, better attendance records, lower dropout rates, fewer disciplinary problems, and frequently continue on to earn degrees in higher education.

Participants are three times more likely to perform in the top quartile on a composite math and reading assessment, compared with nonparticipants, and tend to have higher self-esteem and enhanced status among peers, which many argue is a deterrent to antisocial behavior.

So… Biology or basketball?

One option is definitely not mutually exclusive of the other.

Soule Restaurant's Spotlight on BELIZE

Although officially a part of Central America, Belizeans enjoy the beautiful beaches of the Caribbean as well as the jungles of Central America.

Most Belizeans are of multiracial descent, with almost 44% of mixed Mayan and European descent, and 30% of African and Afro-European descent. The remaining percentage encompasses Mayan, Afro-Amerindian, European, East Indian, Chinese and North American cultures.

Belize’s terrain is flat and swampy at the coastline with low mountains in the interior. The 200-mile Belize Reef encompasses many small islands called Cayes, popular amongst kayakers and snorkelers.

Inland lies several ruins of the Ancient Mayan Civilizations, with pyramids reminiscent of those in Egypt.

The most popular, Lamanai, means submerged crocodile in the Mayan language. Set atop the western bluff of the new River Lagoon in a pristine rainforest, Lamanai is the 3rd largest archaeological site in Belize.

Belize attracts tourists interested in exploring the ruins which lie in the dense tropical rainforests, bird watchers in the Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary and snorkelers of Caye Caulker on the Northern Cayes.

Soule Restaurant's Latest Menu Offering: Jerk Snapper

Try with a side of peas and rice and steamed cabbage or collard greens and candied yams for a Caribbean-Soulé fusion experience!

Soule Restaurant's September Calendar of Events

Sundays, 11am – 3pm
Sunday Brunch

Soulé's Signature Caribbean & Southern-Style Sunday Brunch is the perfect family tradition. Spend a late morning with family over Southern Fried Chicken with Waffles, delicious Jamaican Ackee & Saltfish, or American Eggs with Bacon and Toast.

There’s something to suit even the most discriminate palate!

Tuesday, September 1st
7:30 – 10:30pm

The In-Progress Group presents its first monthly Youth Open Mic at Soulé! This Brain Damage Series will take place on the first Tuesday of every month and will feature amazing teens and young adults from all backgrounds.

Tuesday, September 22nd & September 29th
8 - 11pm

Spoken Word Open Mic

Soulé’s Bi-Weekly Spoken Word Open Mic will skip a week and take place on September 15th in consideration of Back-to School and Labor Day, followed by its regurlarly scheduled event on Tuesday, September 22nd.

Please contact Nichole at to be included in the lineup!

Thursday, September 17th & September 24th
7 – 11pm

BYO Karaoke Thursdays at Soulé

Come Celebrate the ‘90s at the original Soulé BYO Karaoke Thursday! Our collection is getting pretty extensive—please notify us in advance of special requests and we’ll try to accommodate you!

Sunday, September 20th
5 – 8pm
Author Spotlight & Book Signing featuring Justinah McFadden

Four-time author Justinah McFadden epitomizes the American poetic dream which has awakened on the pages of her books.

Her latest release, A Diary of Time is about forgiveness and letting go of the past. Her books are all available at Barnes and Noble. For more information log on to

Wednesday, September 23rd
7:30pm - 11pm
Earth*Mama Tea Party Series

The first of the Earth*Mama Tea Party Series will provide an opportunity to support the Palm Out Poverty initiative of All for Africa as well as a number of retail, artist, and design supporters.

Sunday, September 27th
5 – 8pm
Author Spotlight & Book Signing featuring Onika Pascal

This silent poet and lover of words expresses her thoughts and See Through Soul in her second release, Bardvillian Symphonies!

Don’t miss the talented Onika Pascal on Sunday September 27th from 5 – 8pm, as she shares some of her latest work!

To be included in the Open Mic portion of the reading, please contact Nichole at Slots are limited, so please reserve your place early!

Soule Restaurant Food Facts: Mushrooms

One popular belief that bears no truth is that mushrooms have no nutritional value.
Yet, mushrooms have been used for thousands of years for their medicinal powers.

They remain popular in China, particularly for their health benefits, and in ancient times were prized by the Pharoahs’, Greeks and Romans as delicacies and for energy before battles.

Mushrooms are often misclassified as a vegetable or herb, but in actuality, they are part of the fungi family.

They are relatively high in protein, and are often used by vegetarians as a meat substitute due to this quality and its somewhat meaty texture. They are also an excellent source of potassium, which helps to lower elevated blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke. Other nutrients include riboflavin, niacin and selenium.

Even more interesting, Phytochemicals found in some mushrooms are now being studied as possible cancer-fighting substances, according to the American Institute for Cancer Research.

Summer is at an end… as much as I love the warm weather, I have to admit: I love autumn in New England!

The trees are beautiful, with leaves in vibrant reds and golds, and there’s a slight nip in the air that begins immediately after Labor Day, like clockwork. The anticipation of the impending holidays is pretty exciting as well.

My brothers and I have an annual tradition of taking the kids on a family outing to a farm in Princeton at this time of the year. It’s a bit of a drive, but definitely worth it. We always select a brisk, sunny day, and the first thing we do upon arrival is visit the corn maze, where we pick a few ears of corn, which we then feed to the sheep and goats.

We don’t spend much time listening to the live country band; rather, we take time to check out the chrysanthemums and collect sunflower seeds from the sunflowers.

Afterwards, we tour the barn, which is decorated in different autumn themes every year, like Johnny Appleseed or the History of Corn.

Finally, we pick our pumpkins before stopping at the country farmhouse store for some sweet apple cider, warm apple cider donuts, and fresh pumpkin or apple pies. Then we head to the orchard.

The orchard is about a mile down the road from the farm, and it is the coolest place ever! (Although many argue that I’m not a very good judge of cool.)
The apple trees are about 7 feet tall and the branches are low enough even for my 2-year old niece to pick.

I prefer the Golden Delicious, but we all meander through the orchard, picking indiscriminately, eating crisp, juicy apples along the way.

By the time our bags are full, we’re all contentedly weary, and we say our goodbyes and prepare for the drive home.

This isn’t the end, however. We still have to make Jack O’Lanterns and apple pies, and pumpkin mashed potatoes, pumpkin pies, and of course, roasted pumpkin seeds. It’s so autumn-y and cozy and fun!

So on brisk autumn days when my sister calls me from Trinidad to boast that she’s sitting on the beach in Maracas, eating a bake and shark and drinking a Stag, I don’t feel bad.

Well… not very.

Soule Restaurant: Help to Eradicate the Silent Killer

Ovarian Cancer occurs in 1 in 57 women, and kills more women than all the other gynecological cancers combined. More than 25,500 women will be diagnosed this year alone, with fatalities occurring in over 14,500.

September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, and Soulé International Restaurant is proud to join Janice’s Ladies; a team in the Long Island Chapter of the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, in their fight to eradicate this Silent Killer.
The team is named for Janice Darby Havercombe, who succumbed to Ovarian Cancer in April of 1997.

Like many, Janice’s family had no idea that Ovarian Cancer is a leading cause of cancer related death amongst women.

They had no idea that Ovarian Cancer is commonly asymptomatic or mistaken for other "women's illnesses".

They had no idea that by the time most women are diagnosed, they are usually in stage 3 or 4, making a cure difficult.

They had no idea that regular gynecological exams do not screen for Ovarian Cancer.

They had no idea that a fleeting nine months after receiving the diagnosis, their beloved mother, sister, cousin, daughter, would succumb to this horrible disease.

They had no idea how much their life would change due to these four vile words "You have Ovarian Cancer".

The 2009 Walk to Break the Silence on Ovarian Cancer will take place on September 26th at Eisenhower Park in East Meadow, New York.

Details on this year’s walk is available at, where you have the option to join Janice’s Ladies and walk or donate at your convenience.

All contributors who donate a minimum of $20 at Soulé will receive 10% off their order. (Lesser donations will receive a 5% discount.)

For further information, please contact Nichole at

Soule Restaurant: Back to School... Tattoos?

I'm gettin' old.

It’s gettin' ugly.

Disturbingly ugly.

I found three gray hairs in my beard; in different locations so they definitely stood out.

I got out of bed the other day and my knee cracked.

The extent of my exercise is a sit-up a day: half when I get up out of bed, the other half when I lay down.

I had my 1st prostate exam, but I will definitely spare you all the details.

It’s back to school time!

Back to losing your seat on the bus and train. Back to hearing the latest Jay Z album (eh) or Raekwon's album (bananas!) out of a kid's headphones.

I was on the bus this Tuesday, the first day the refrigerator raiders of the summer were heading back to school, and I couldn’t help but think...

When I was younger, we were always happy with our new school clothes.

In Junior High, I used to try on my clothes a couple of days before school started, and walk around to picture how I’d look trying to get a chick’s phone number.

Thinking I was fly.

(Looking fly beat out phone number by A LOT).

Well, while I was on the bus listening to stories of summer conquests and vacations, I watched kids compare their back to school... TATTOOS.

That is not a typo.

I remember at the tender age of 14, I asked my mom for an earring.

After I awoke from the clothesline ala Big John Studd style, (my father), I waited a few years to get that earring.

Tattoos on a high school kid?

Next, you're gonna tell me that 6-year olds have cell phones and iPods.

Wait... They do?

...Victor Torres

Soule Restaurant: The Buzz...

The National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center is scouring the world for amateur footage of the attacks…Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries wants to bail out luxury apartment developers in his district with new loans that would turn the high-end units into “affordable” residences... Spike Lee’s Michael Jackson Birthday bash was a complete success with thousands coming out to celebrate Jackson’s life... Speaking of MJ, The MTA told a Brooklyn councilwoman to beat it after she suggested that the Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway station be renamed in honor of Michael Jackson, who famously filmed his “Bad” video there in 1987... It’s Fashion Week! Check out highlights online with New York Magazine and Fashion Week Daily... The $100 laptop that was marketed as a saving grace for starving children in Africa is on its way to the New York City public schools. The first round of low-cost laptops is going to two city elementary schools, one in the Bronx, P.S. 5, and one in the Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn, P.S. 20... Delia Hunnly has resorted to hiring children (none older than 16) to antagonize and heckle Latitia James’ workers. It appears that her tactics have backfired, however, with Clinton Hill residents supporting Ms. James largely due to Hunnly’s unprofessionalism... The worst part of the West Indian Day Parade this year? The NYPD. When did they become so nasty and rude?