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Paula Deen to cook for fans live on 20-show tour



SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - Approaching a year since the Food Network pulled the plug on her TV show, Paula Deen plans to hit the road this summer to cook live for fans.

Paula Deen Ventures, a new company formed to help launch a comeback for the celebrity cook, announced Monday that she's booking 20 shows in cities across the U.S. starting in June. It says the 90-minute "Paula Deen Live!" shows will feature a mix of cooking demonstrations, games with audience members and personal stories.

"I cannot wait to get on the road and meet so many of my amazing fans during these shows," Deen said in a statement.

The tour kicks off in June, a year after Deen's admission under oath that she had used racial slurs in the past became public. The Food Network and other corporate sponsors soon parted company with Deen. Her offending comments were during a court deposition in a lawsuit by a former employee making harassment and discrimination claims against Deen and her brother, Bubba Hiers. The suit was settled last August.

The cooking tour is the latest piece of a comeback strategy Deen rolled out in February when she announced a deal with the Najafi Companies, an Arizona-based private investment firm that's pouring $75 to $100 million into rebooting her public career.

Only five cities on Deen's tour schedule have been announced so far, and all of them are located in her Southern comfort zone. Deen has booked two August shows in her home base of Savannah, followed by another up the highway in Atlanta. She also plans to cook for crowds in Nashville, Tenn., and San Antonio, Texas.

The tour kicks off June 21 and 22 with two shows in the Smoky Mountains tourist hub of Pigeon Forge, Tenn., where Deen has a new $20 million restaurant in the works.

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Wealth Builder April 28 2014 at 2:34 PM

That is right Paula, give the Food Network a middle finger, get on the road and go make your money.

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1 reply
goodbarnes Wealth Builder April 28 2014 at 2:37 PM

It is way past time we give a middle finger to all liberal speak-thought police.

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Angela9 April 29 2014 at 7:32 AM

OH how wonderful for Paula. She was proven to be innocent of all charges. Remember the woman finally admitted she was wanting MONEY from Paula? Look what one lie can do to an innocent person's career. Shame on Food Network for being so hasty in judgement without the true facts.

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1 reply
Katrina Angela9 April 29 2014 at 7:40 AM

She didnt necessarily Lie.. Paula admitted that she was racist and that her father owned a plantation full of slaves and she did say that she wanted some "ni..gers" to Dance around in Tap pants at a dream wedding. She did say those things.. Did she apologize YES.. but don't say that she's innocent! the only reason that she got off was that the person complaining was White.. I hate when people turn the other cheek.. I'm ok with owning up to your fault but pretending like it's No Big Deal is another story.. I hope that your family welcomes every ethnic background with all of thoe steriotypes to your family

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1 reply
frankdlu Katrina April 29 2014 at 8:34 AM

HONEY....THAT'S THE WAY IS WAS FOR CENTURIES....THE WORLD IS CHANGING...STOP DWELLING IN THE PAST AND MOVE ON. THAT'S THE PROBLEM WITH WHAT YOU ARE TEACHING BLACKS....WHOAH IS ME...INSTEAD OF GETTING AN EDUCATION AND BEING WHO YOU ARE...WHITE - BLACK -OR ANY OTHER COLOR OR RACE....IF YOU WORK HARD YOU WILL SUCCEED...

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tootiesandi April 29 2014 at 7:09 AM

Great to hear! Hope you are coming to the Philadelphia area--I will be there. Here's a thumb to all you self righteous fakes out there.

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kittyhawkgrl April 29 2014 at 7:09 AM

we ALL have done and said things we should not have and none and I mean none of us should throw stones-I wish her well and do not believe she is in any way a bad person.

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1 reply
Steve's Stuff kittyhawkgrl April 29 2014 at 7:31 AM

And I am NOT Ashamed of it at all. I HAVE the right of freedom of speech, and expression, and am very happy to use it, and to be able to do so!!!!

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Wynema April 29 2014 at 9:16 AM

When will she be in Oklahoma???????????????

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Karen April 29 2014 at 6:08 AM

miss her on the food network, so I have tuned out . I will travel to see her

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whatiron April 28 2014 at 1:19 PM

Paula I hope you come to south jersey!

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arnoldhoneybrown April 29 2014 at 10:33 AM

Here is a happy ending . The casino in Tunica that was home to one of Paula's restaurant . Well in the hurry of those to kick Paula out of things they closed her restaurant which was a Major draw to there casino . Many who didn't gamble but went to eat .
Well they are closing at end of April ! Gee guess laugh is on them !

Flag Reply +8 rate up
nancyjeanmorgan April 29 2014 at 1:42 PM

Please come to Iowa!

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bodaigo April 29 2014 at 5:05 AM

paula....... come to brandon florida. we are just 16 miles east of tampa. we would love to have yall here.

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