Delavan mayor happy to accept olive branch from Seahawks fan
DELAVAN Never, ever, ever turn down smoked salmon.
It's like turning down caviar, or rare vintage wine or a finely aged Wisconsin cheddar.
This is something Delavan Mayor Mel Nieuwenhuis understands, and when the smoked salmon call came, he didn't hesitate to say "yes".
Last week, Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt declined a smoked-salmon peace offering from a Seattle Seahawk fan who wanted to make nice after the botched call in the Seahawks-Packers game.
Undeterred, the fan, one Rudy McCoy-Pantoja Jr., randomly picked another city in Wisconsin for his goodwill gesture and found a more receptive mayor for his gift of smoked salmon, kringle, local beer and other items.
Mayor Mel—as he is locally known—was happy to accept and in return will send McCoy-Pantoja Jr. the best of the Delavan area: Andes Candies, apple wine from the Apple Barn Orchard and Winery, venison steaks from one of the mayor's bow-hunting adventures and cheese.
Nieuwenhuis greeted with acclaim the idea of sending cheese from the Brick Street Market, the Delavan fromagerie—that's a fancy-pants name for cheese shop—with acclaim.
McCoy-Pantoja will also get a 12-pack of Miller High Life, which isn't made in Delavan, but is close enough.
What started as a friendly gesture has now become a way to promote the local offerings of both cities, Nieuwenhuis said.
"Jackie Busch from the chamber of commerce was really excited about it," Nieuwenhuis said. "It's a good way to network, too."
OK, but when will that salmon arrive?
"He said he was sending it out Wednesday, and I want to bring it to next Tuesday night's city council meeting," Nieuwenhuis said. "It's for the public."
Can any gift make up for the botched call?
"No, but it might ease the pain," said Nieuwenhuis, who has been a Packer fan his entire life.
Finally, who turns down free salmon?
"Yeah, what's with that?" Nieuwenhuis said.
Schmitt's office told the Appleton Post Crescent the mayor appreciated the gesture but doesn't do exchanges during the regular season.