The Food Network comes to Lansing

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The Food Network plans to film an episode of “Food Court Wars” at the Lansing Mall and the Lansing City Market this week.

The show, hosted by Chef Tyler Florence, brings two teams of entrepreneurs against each other to compete for their own food court restaurant at the Lansing Mall, rent-free for a year.  The object is to test each team’s ability to make food and run a business.

Every week the Food Network travels around to a different U.S. mall to open a brand new local eatery that offers a region-specific menu, foodnetwork.com says.

Two unannounced local businesses will be competing for the prize.

The two teams will offer samples of their food from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday at the Lansing City Market. The competition, which is closed to the public, begins at 5 p.m. Thursday at the Lansing Mall.

There is confusion about being able to view the live taping at Lansing Mall. According to LSJ.com, one can “register as a participant” by emailing fcwlansing@gmail.com, but an autoresponse said that does not guarantee an opportunity to participate. Communication from the Food Network said the event is closed to the public.

Why Lansing Mall?  Will it boost business? Paige Moreau, the Lansing mall general manager, refused to comment. Seth Hyman, a spokesman for the Food Network, also declined to answer specific questions about the Lansing episode but provided a company news release.

“The Lansing Regional Chamber is pleased to work with the Food Network to promote the taping of Food Court Wars to our membership and the community,” Michelle Rahl, the director of marketing and events for the Lansing Regional Chamber, said in a statement.

“The grand prize of a food court restaurant location for one year at no-cost is most definitely a game changer for a local small business, restaurant entrepreneur looking to expand and grow in this region,” Tim Daman, president and CEO of the Lansing Regional Chamber, said on Mlive.com.

–Danielle St. Marie

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