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Holiday Food Drive Receives Weird Condiments, Already Opened Bags of Crackers
Written by Howard Dale Jr.   

MILLBANK – As we celebrate the winter holidays with feasts, families and friends, let us not forget that others are not so fortunate. This is the time of year in which it is most important to help our neediest neighbors. To that end, the First Millbank Church of God is asking residents to donate food items to its Annual Year-End Food Drive from December 5 – 10, 2016. All items can be dropped off in the marked bins in front of the church’s Auxillary Building at 105 Chesterfield St. These foodstuffs will be distributed to local families on December 11 and will help provide sustenance and cheer throughout the season.

The food drive is accepting a wide range of items, but there are certain foods that are especially popular or helpful for our less fortunate Millbankians. “People often are confused about what makes a helpful food donation,” says Meryl Burgato, 46, chairperson of the Annual Food Drive Committee. “Just think of what you couldn’t do without over the holidays, and that’s probably what our clients would like, too. They are just like you and me, maybe just struggling a little bit.”

When asked if the poverty-stricken are just like me, and they might like to polish off a jar of cocktail onions and dip into some mint jelly from 2007, Burgato said, “Well, for food safety, it’s best that you bring food that has not been opened yet. It doesn’t have to be expensive – things like pasta, canned beans and tuna, jars of peanut butter – all are great choices. We are so grateful for those contributions that mean our fellow residents won’t go hungry this month.”

One of those contributors agrees that Millbank residents should donate food this month. “I love participating in the annual holiday food drive. It makes me feel so good about myself, ” says local parishioner Emma Bartlett. “I can just look in my pantry and feel great about how organized it is…and then I can go buy more tiny bottles of hot Chinese mustard!”

When asked whether Bartlett thought that tiny bottles of hot Chinese mustard would be snatched up at the food bank, she replied, “The poor are just like you and me, except a little bit more like garbage disposals.”

According to Burgato, condiments such as mango chutney or the remnants of Aunt Silvia’s fruitcake from last year, while intriguing, are usually not all that useful to the families who rely on the food bank’s largesse. However, when confronted, she acknowledged that people with smaller incomes deserve to try maraschino cherries and sriracha pistachios that came in the office gift basket just as much as we do. Optimistic folks see the dusty jar of capers as half full, not half empty.

“Maybe just as long as the package is still sealed,” Burgato added.

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Haunted Millbank Tours Spook Local Business Owners
Written by Helen Hamilton   

MILLBANK – According to local resident and “scholar of paranormal phenomena”, Neil Gruber, Millbank is a veritable hotspot for the mysterious and unknown. “Millbank has over 230 haunted houses, buildings and other structures. There is even a haunted pergola,” Mr. Gruber explains. “Most people in Millbank have no idea that they live in such a nexus of the supernatural, but that is what I’m here for.” This will be the third year in which Mr. Gruber leads tours of creepy Millbank landmarks, such as the second dumpster behind the Super GroceryMart, the garden section of the Lotsa Value Hardware store and the reference section of the public library.

And this is where the controversy begins. “Mr. Gruber is telling people that an axe murderer decapitated over 40 people in the back of the store,” says Lotsa Value store owner and city councilman Gary Shanks. “No matter what he claims, that is having a negative effect on business, which is unfair, since there is no record of such a mass beheading ever happening in this store, not in the garden section, not in the paint section, not even in the plumbing section. Not anywhere.” Mr. Shanks says that he aims to keep his store decapitation-free, so customers should feel safe and take advantage of the great deals on light bulbs and leaf rakes.

Mr. Gruber stands by his claims. “First of all, how does Gary know there wasn’t ever a mass decapitation on the site of his store? There is no way he can’t prove that a mass beheading didn’t ever happen at that location. History is more mysterious than we give it credit for, and I know what I felt when I stood next to the vegetable seeds. I felt the vibrations of dozens of heads plopping to the ground. Plop, plop, plop, plop, plop.”

“That scary stuff is okay for some, but the rest of us don’t need that kind of stress in our lives,” says Maria Elena Iturribide, owner and manager of the Koffee Klatch diner. Iturribide and her husband Sergio have run the diner for over seven years and have experienced nary a boo. However, Mr. Gruber’s claim of the diner selling possessed popovers have thrown the clientele into a tizzy. “Look at this popover. Pillowy and buttery. Not demonic,” says Iturribide.

Mr. Gruber maintains that his paranormal tours bring in additional business, not scare it away. “People from all over the region will associate Millbank with the strange and unknown. Chupacabra sightings? Try over by the middle school. Alien abduction? The local drugstore is the best place to start.”

“Personally, I don’t believe in alien abductions,” says Joe Stewart, from the Stewart’s Drugs and Sundries. “But our deals on flu shots and Whitman’s samplers are out of this world!” Mr. Bakerman reports that customers seem less interested in sundries when concerned about anal probes. “But we do have a wide selection of adult diapers in Aisle 7,” Stewart adds.

For the time being, there is little that local shop owners can do to keep the terrifying tours out of their businesses. “At least all this creepy madness will end on November 1st,” says Iturribide. “Then things can get back to normal.”

Gruber begs to differ. “Weirdness never takes a vacation.”

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74 Lucky Residents Detained for Fun
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

Many more winners expected during Taste of Millbank Festival, promise PuddCorp executives.

Standing before a phalanx of executives from PuddCorp tonight , the Mayor of Millbank announced that 74 people have been taken to PuddCorp’s “Magical Detainment Funzone” during the first day of the Taste of Millbank Festival. Also, he said this has been the most successful Taste Festival in history.

To ensure a peaceful event, the City of Millbank contracted with PuddCorp, a multi-billion dollar industrial conglomerate, to augment the supply of butterscotch pudding served at the festival by residents of the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility. The Downhill’s pudding has always been the most popular item at the culinary festival. In past years, shortages have resulted in rioting, raccoon rampages and intra-family squabbling.

PuddCorp - Pooding OverlordsUnder its contract with the City, PuddCorp is providing its institutional-purpose pudding-substitute “Pooding” to ensure no Millbank resident goes without something that at least tastes similar to butterscotch pudding, and to keep the event peaceful enough that some citizens will remain long enough to try other local culinary delights, such as Adolf’s Irish Pub’s home-pickled eggs, the Out-of-Bounds Saloon’s Head Cheese Chili, and the Kaffee Klatsch’s Pringle’s brand potato chips.

To further ensure a smooth event, PuddCorp provided a private security detail of 44 heavily-armed guards who were sworn in by the Millbank Police chief as temporary officers. PuddCorp also installed the Funzone, which is surrounded by electric and barb wires to prevent people from sneaking in. The PuddCorp guards monitor pudding distribution and identify “fun-lovers” who will receive a free trip to the Magical Detainment Funzone.  A minimum stay within the Funzone is 48 hours, but PuddCorp executives said some people have loved it so much they never came back out.

PuddCorp executives said all 74 current visitors to the Magical Detainment Funzone were highly deserving. However, they would not provide any clues as to how other Millbank residents can win a free ticket. It is estimated that 72 people have received free tickets for unstated reasons, while the remaining two were rewarded for loitering near the festival grounds with banned musical instruments.

The Mayor and PuddCorp said the Funzone has room to accommodate as many “fun-lovers” as they identify. The Mayor asked residents to “Remain calm and non-confrontational during the remainder of the Taste of Millbank Festival, and contantly praise the Pooding so graciously provided by these large men surrounding me.”

PuddCorp executives added, “Or else.”

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Pudding Quandary Solved Says City
Written by Millbank Daily-Weekly   

PuddCorp Manufacturing Facilities

Major Conglomerate Hired to Prevent Pudding-shortage Related Rioting

In an effort to mitigate the risk of butterscotch pudding shortages and rioting during this year’s Taste of Millbank festival, City officials announced they have contracted with PuddCorp International to provide additional supplies during the festival.

Butterscotch pudding is the most popular dish at the annual “Taste in Millbank.” In recent years it has accounted for as much as 80% of all food sales, and 45% of beverage sales.

However, residents of the Downhill Moderate Senior Living Facility have always handcrafted the pudding in small batches using a closely-guarded recipe that locals call, “The most delicious butterscotch pudding in the world.” It sells out each year, and those who got none have caused vandalism, looting, unnecessary name-calling and issued death threats against the City’s economically-challenged seniors.

The City has been unsuccessful in convincing the Downhill residents to produce more butterscotch pudding, enough for everyone. Some critics claim the seniors enjoy the chaos that ensues when supplies run out, and get out chairs to watch. The seniors have denied and said they sit down, “Because we are tired.”

The City said it had to take steps to prevent a repeat of previous years’ incidents.

Local Downhill pudding maker“Thanks to PuddCorp, there will be no shortages,” said an official Millbank press release. “There will be enough stuff that tastes like butterscotch for everyone.” The release went on to list the qualifications of PuddCorp, a subsidiary of Lead Pipe Industries, including their two million square foot manufacturing facility and their contracts to provide soft desserts to correctional facilities and asylums for the mentally deranged in 47 states. PuddCorp also recently settled several lawsuits. As a result its product must be called “pooding” and can only be referred to as “butterscotch-like.” Also, warning labels must be present to warn those with allergies to peanuts, whey and rat feces of their presence in the pooding.

“We chose PuddCorp because we doubt they’d serve it to America’s prisoners if it weren’t delicious,” said a Millbank spokesman, “And the price! Well, let’s just say it was less than a tenth the cost of the next bid. We think residents will really savor the flavor of a government being good stewards with their tax dollars.”

PuddCorp will bring in over 40,000 gallons of pooding in an open-air semi-truck. The PuddCorp butterscotch-like product will be served throughout the festival, randomly alongside the local handcrafted pudding to prevent residents from getting angry when the Downhill’s supply is expended.

“Pooding and pudding,” said a city spokesman, “people won’t know the difference. This is looking like it will be the best, least violent, Taste of Millbank ever.”

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Today in Millbank History

May 23, 1968

Millbank's premiere department store, Millbank Dry Goods and Sundries, is destroyed by fire, and the owner, Hamish Farqueson, is never seen again.  Main Street becomes the domain of hobos and wastrels.

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Millbank Crime Watch

Saturday, 02 May 2015

7:35 p.m. - Police responded to reports of hooliganism in the Fun But Dangerous Vacant Lot. When police arrived, they could find no troublemakers. They reported hearing a loud raspberry, but could not locate the source.


Tuesday, 05 May 2015

10:17 a.m. - A resident on Divan Street reported someone had been stealing the “Children Playing” warning sign he posted on the street, and replaced it with a sign that said, “Hit these kids. They’re rotten.” Police informed the man that neither sign was legal.


Wednesday, 13 May 2015

12:54 a.m. - A woman reported seeing two children left in a car outside the Out of Bounds Saloon after midnight. Responding officers investigated and found that there were no children, but two midgets were engaged in inappropriate contact.


Friday, 15 May 2015

9:12 p.m. - A child to ask if the old abandoned hotel on the edge of town was haunted. Police investigated and could not make a conclusive determination.


Wednesday, 20 May 2015

8:14 p.m. – Two people on bicycles on Chaise Street were reported when they stopped to talk for three or four minutes.


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