Much fuss has been made about the Highlands Mommies' relationships to local businesses, as is evident in the comments on our cover story, "The Mommies." Here's a juicy one:
The Highland Mommies are run by a self-possessed cadre of mean girls who finally have a voice after what surely were unfulfilled high school years. The comment about the Highland Mommies being bullies is true. ... Feeling big because you can 'ruin' a small business or individual trying to make a living is nothing to be proud of.
But are the Mommies trying to hurt local businesses, or help them?
The Mommies say it's the latter, though they admit that there was a time when their reputation wasn't stellar. "We had a bad rap," explains Mommies managing director Laverne Herrera-Hay. "They used to say, 'Oh, you don't want to make the Highlands Mommies mad because they'll make your business go under.'
"And that's not true. That's the last thing we want, is to see any business in our community go under. Because they're owned by people who live in this neighborhood. So we've worked on that, and I think it's gotten a lot better."
In fact, the Mommies held their own "Best Of" contest last year for Highlands businesses (not unlike the "Best Of" awards given out by a certain venerable local publication). They announced the winners last February. Here's the Mommies' blue-ribbon list:
Favorite Mexican Restaurant Tacos Jalisco
Most Authentic Mexican Restaurant Taqueria Patzcuaro
Favorite Italian Restaurant Parisi
Favorite Asian Restaurant Thai Basil
Favorite Delivery Pasquini's
Most Kid-Friendly Restaurant Pasquini's
Favorite Date-Night Restaurant Duo
Favorite Dessert Happy Cakes
Coolest Bar Root Down
Best Patio Cafe Caliente (renamed Highlands Cork and Coffee)
Favorite Cafe Common Grounds
Favorite Breakfast DJ's Berkeley Cafe
Favorite Ice Cream Red Trolley
Favorite BBQ Big Hoss
Favorite Burger Billy's Inn
Most Addictive Pizza Parisi
Favorite New Restaurant Ernie's Bar & Pizza
Favorite Liquor Store Mondo Vino
Favorite Grown-Up Clothing Store Dragonfly
Favorite Kids Clothing Store Real Baby
Favorite Consignment Shop Clotheshorse
Favorite Book Shop The Bookery Nook
Favorite Pet Supply Store Mouthfuls
Favorite Spa Indulgences Day Spa
Favorite Hair Salon Rebelle by Tootsies
Favorite Nail/Wax Tootsies
Favorite Exercise Class or Gym SoulFire Fitness
Favorite Yoga Spiral Yoga
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Favorite Class to Take with Your Kids Music Together
So, Mommy haters, do you agree with their picks? Tell us in the comments!
More from our Follow That Story archive: "Highlands Mommies: A list of the best quotes that didn't make it into the cover story."