Anyone who follows me on Twitter would know that I excitedly tweeted this morning about the grand opening of Wahlburgers, a new restaurant co-owned by the actors (and former pop stars) Mark and Donnie Wahlberg along with their brother, Paul, who’s a chef.
I don’t even eat hamburgers and feel like celebrity-owned restaurants aren’t really that uncommon, but this is different because Wahlburgers opened in my hometown! What’s even crazier is that Mark Wahlberg (click that link if you don’t get the title reference) has been dropping hints that they might make a reality show about the restaurant. I somehow feel like a Hingham-set reality show just wouldn’t be a good thing, but we shall see.
Normally I wouldn’t have known about a new restaurant opening in Hingham or even in Boston, but for whatever reason this story has gotten HUGE national media coverage (perhaps because of the funny name?). I first read about it on Gawker a few months ago (and have bemusedly read the snarky comments about Hingham ever since), but have also seen stories on Huffington Post, The Hollywood Reporter and even in US Weekly. I spoke with my parents about it and my Dad thinks Mark’s publicist is hyping up the story, which seems likely, but it’s not like people all over the country are going to make their way out to Hingham just to eat a burger, right? And according to IMDB there’s not even a new movie to promote right now. All the same, I find it hilarious that even Anderson Cooper was present for the grand opening (can’t wait to watch video online):
As I noted this morning, of all the breathless media coverage of the big red carpet grand opening (hilarious, because Hingham just isn’t a red carpet kinda place), two things stood out to me: One, aside from the Wahlbergs themselves (and Anderson Cooper!), there weren’t actually any conventional celebs there. But of course in Boston our professional athletes are the celebs, and they were there in spades, most notably Red Sox Big Papi (David Ortiz) and Kevin Youkilis, the 1980 Olympic hockey captain Mike Eruzione, and a few young Patriots (Gronk’s banging a porn star?! Ewwww).
The second funny thing I noticed was this tidbit from the Boston Globe article:
“There were a few hundred fans waiting outside, most of whom were female – and partial to Donnie.”
Only in Boston – where every female between the ages of about 26 and 60 (myself included) loved New Kids on the Block during their heyday in the late 80s and early 90s – would more women care about Donnie Wahlberg than his younger, hotter, A-lister brother. It’s stuff like this that makes me miss home, and I can’t wait to eat at Wahlburgers (screw the burgers, they have “adult frappes”) when we’re back at Christmas time. And Donnie totally was the best New Kid: