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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014 3 years ago

Josh Garrick: Culture for Your Calendar

In 2011 Orlando launched Orlando Cares, bringing volunteers to help young people improve their academic success.
by: Josh Garrick Columnist

Current – Mayor Dyer asks us to make a difference with Orlando Cares

In 2011 Orlando launched Orlando Cares, bringing volunteers to help young people improve their academic success. Through six programs, volunteers have helped more than 6,000 children. The results have included 1,800 fifth- to eighth- graders participating in Mayor Buddy’s Book Club; pre-school ‘Ambassadors’ reading 4,500 stories in pre-kindergarten centers; more than 530 container gardens planted by youths participating in The Garden; hundreds of middle school students completing career plans as part of Path Finders; and 100 percent of the students in Third Grade Reads improving their reading fluency. The mayor is seeking volunteers and invites us to call 407-246-3507 or email [email protected] to become involved and make a difference.

Through Aug. 31 – ‘Allure of Ancient Rome’

Showcasing prints, drawings, and an illustrated book from the Cornell Museum’s permanent collection, the Cornell’s current exhibit highlights the significance of Roman antiquities and the role played by printed images in sharing knowledge about those antiquities. This exhibit coincides with the loan of a Roman sarcophagus to the Cornell with the works on view dating from 1540 to 1750. Admission is free. Call 407-646-2526 or visit

Aug. 15 – Fringe favorite ‘Tappin’ and Yappin’’ in performance at the Abbey

Fresh from a successful run at the Orlando Fringe Festival, “Tappin’ and Yappin’” – featuring Joy Anderson and John B. deHaas – will play one performance at The Abbey on Aug. 15 at 9 p.m. Directed by Andrea Canny, “Tappin’ and Yappin’” celebrates the life of superstar Cindy Starr from her humble beginnings to her triumph on the silver screen. Cindy and her accompanist Johnnie Ivories will have you laughing and singing along with her best-known hits. Tickets are $20 at or by calling 866-468-7630.

Aug. 15-17 – CFArts presents ‘Singing Sondheim’

Central Florida Community Arts (CFArts) brings back their Spotlight Series with “Singing Sondheim.” Featuring songs from the unparalleled career of Stephen Sondheim – from musicals as varied as “West Side Story” to “Into the Woods” – Director Donald Rupe has gathered a team of 13 performers with voices to handle this award-winning repertoire. “Singing Sondheim” will take place on Aug. 15-17 at Central Christian Church at 250 S.W. Ivanhoe Blvd. in Orlando. Info and ticketing is available at or by contacting [email protected]

Aug. 15-31 – ‘Peter Pan the Musical’ at Osceola Center for the Arts

The Osceola Center for the Arts will present “Peter Pan the Musical” from Aug. 15 to 31. Based on J.M. Barrie's classic tale, “Peter Pan” is one of the most beloved family favorites of all time. Follow Peter, Tinkerbell, and a trail of fairy dust as the lost boys face the villainous Captain Hook. Featuring the iconic songs “I'm Flying,” “I Won't Grow Up,” and “Never Never Land,” and a book full of magic and adventure, audiences will see the actors fly through the air in special effects never before done at the center. The Osceola Center is located at 2411 E. Highway 192 in Kissimmee. Visit

Aug. 16 to Nov. 30 – “Frankly my Dear...”

The Orange County History Center will host “Gone With the Wind: Reel to Real,” an exhibit celebrating the 75th anniversary of one of the most popular films ever made. The exhibit will include original costumes and artifacts of the film from the collection of James Tumblin, former head of Universal Studios’ makeup department. Tumblin started his collection in 1962 when he purchased a dress that was about to be thrown away only to learn later that the dress had been worn by actress Vivien Leigh. Tumblin’s collection now includes more than 300,000 items. The exhibit runs from Aug. 16 to Nov. 30 at the History Center. Call 407-836-8500 or visit

Aug. 17 – Puppets’ Untold Stories at the Polasek Museum

While puppetry is the theme of the current exhibit at Winter Park’s Polasek Museum, a behind-the-scenes tour of the exhibit – with the puppet creators – is being offered on Aug. 17 at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. The staff from MicheLee Puppets will walk guests through the collection, sharing stories about each work of art – created from layers of foam, fur, and papier-mâché. Museum admission rates apply. The Polasek Museum is at 633 Osceola Ave. in Winter Park. Call 407-647-6294 or visit

Aug. 17 – Steinway Society fundraiser

Known for providing scholarships (and pianos) for young pianists, The Steinway Society will present Divas in Concert with the Carol Stein Quartet on Aug. 17 at 6 pm. Beginning with a reception at 5 pm, this ‘fun-raiser’ will be held at the Orlando Museum of Art to stimulate the talent of disadvantaged youth. Featuring top female performers Linda Cole, Jacqueline Jones, Michelle Mailhot, and Jaimie Roberts with singer/pianist Carol Stein hosting, you can show your support by calling 407-786-5965 or emailing [email protected]

Aug. 18 – Orlando Philharmonic presents Rimma & Friends

With each concert featuring a different theme, this season’s Sounds of Summer Concert Series is performed at the Orlando Philharmonic’s new home at Plaza Live at 425 N. Bumby Ave. in Orlando. The Aug. 18 concert, called Rimma & Friends, includes Concertmaster Rimma Bergeron-Langlois and members of the Orlando Philharmonic string section performing Mendelssohn’s String Quartet No. 2, Glinka’s Piano Trio in D minor, and Beethoven’s String Quartet, op. 132. Visit or call 407-770-0071.

Aug. 21 – Wine dinner takes us to Greece at Taverna Opa Orlando

Taverna Opa’s final summer wine dinner of the season will take place on Aug. 21 beginning at 6:30 p.m. Chef Katerina Coumbaros has created a five-course tasting menu to complement the fine wines provided by the Republic National Distributing Company – this time honoring Taverna Opa’s authentic Greek cuisine by featuring Greek wines exclusively. Allowing us the opportunity to experience one last “vacation” without leaving Orlando, Taverna Opa is at 9101 International Drive at Pointe Orlando. The meal with wine is $45 per person. Please RSVP to [email protected] or call 407-351-8660.

Aug. 22 – ‘Lengua Materna’ offers ‘messages’ by Hispanic artists

Art & History Museums – Maitland gives voice to the Hispanic community in its new exhibit “Lengua Materna” opening Aug. 22 at A&H’s Maitland Art Center. Translated as “mother tongue,” the exhibit presents universal ideas through the unique vision of Hispanic culture with artists representing diverse communities in a variety of medias. The exhibit features Maria Albornoz (Venezuela), Roberto Gonzalez (Mexico), J. Tomas Lopez (Cuba), and David Figueroa and Edgar Sanchez Cumbas (Puerto Rico). An opening reception – to which the public is invited – will take place on Aug. 22. Visit

Aug. 23 – Disney’s Villains Unleashed

For the first time ever – on Aug. 23 – the deliciously evil Disney Villains will hold sway as they roam the Disney Hollywood Studios beginning at 8 p.m. Guests will get up close and personal with some of the most heinous Disney villains at this one-night-only event while they party together at Hades Hangout, Oogie Boogie’s Variety Show, the Star Wars Villain Zone and the new Villainy In The Skies fireworks spectacular. Guests may purchase tickets at or by calling 407-939-1933.

Aug. 23 – Give Kids the World’s first-ever MacDown Competition

The first ever MacDown (mac and cheese) Competition will benefit Give Kids the World – the 70-acre resort for children with life-threatening illnesses. The competition is open to everyone – from professional chefs to home cooks – on Aug. 23 at the Orange County Convention Center. There will be lots of prizes, but the best prize is knowing your efforts will help a tragically sick child achieve a dream-come-true. To participate or attend the event, visit

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