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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Sep. 24, 2015 4 years ago

Josh Garrick: Culture for Your Calendar

Running through Sept. 30, we are invited to select from over 70 participating restaurants to enjoy three-course dinners for $33.
by: Josh Garrick Columnist

Now to Sept. 30 – Orlando's Magical Dining celebrates 10th delicious anniversary

Magical Dining is truly magical. Running through Sept. 30, we are invited to select from over 70 participating restaurants to enjoy three-course dinners for $33. And in celebration of their 10th anniversary, Visit Orlando has lined up more fine dining restaurants than ever before. Bottom line – we get to choose among great restaurants and enjoy a three-course meal for $33 – through September. Find the full list of participating restaurants at

Now to Sept. 28 – Breakthrough Theatre presents William Hoffman’s ‘As Is’

Winner of the Obie and Drama Desk Awards, “As Is” was originally presented Off-Broadway in 1985 and then transferred to Broadway where it was nominated for a Tony Award. “As Is” focuses on the irrational fears of the early years of AIDS and tells of the relationship between an HIV-positive man and the ex-lover who returns to his side in his time of need. Directed by Wade Hair, the play is brilliantly cast with actors who bring a special empathy to every role. Featuring Anthony Marando and Marcus Davila, this production is highly recommended. Call 407-920-4034 or visit

Now to Sept. 27 – The Southern Women’s Show to celebrate 25th anniversary

The 25th annual Southern Women’s Show is all about shopping, cooking ideas, healthy lifestyles, fashion, and celebrities, and learning about travel destinations, home décor, and business opportunities. Top 10 highlights: Meet Hollis Wilder of the Cupcake Wars, Learn to Paint with Wine and Canvas, Care For Your Health, Meet the Snow Sisters, Shop Gifts With a Cause, Meet Celebrities, Try a New Hair Style – Free, the hot Firefighter Fashion Show, and the Southern Women’s Show’s 25th Birthday Celebration – all at the Orange County Convention Center. Call 800-849-0248 or visit

Sept. 25 – La Maschera Goes Disco – A fundraiser

Find those disco duds and stretch that spandex as you hustle on down to The Abbey at 7 p.m. on Sept. 25. The Downtown Arts District is celebrating the arts with its annual fundraiser – this year with a disco theme and prizes for “best dressed.” Live entertainment by RC Express and food stations by Arthur’s, Millenia Catering, and John Michael Catering. Call 407-648-7060 or visit

Sept. 25 to Oct. 25 – The Garden Theatre presents ‘La Cage aux Folles’

The town of Winter Garden is a beautiful community, with a look that is 1950’s America. The Garden Theatre, the anchor of the community, has consistently wowed us with the professionalism of its musicals. It says much about today that this “we-only-look-conservative” community has chosen to begin its season with the ultimate gay musical – Jerry Herman’s brilliant “La Cage aux Folles” – the first show ever to win the Tony Award for Best Musical three times. Considered controversial when it first opened in New York City in 1983, this musical – in which some of the chorus girls are men – exemplifies family, community, acceptance, love, and a forward thinking Board of Directors. Directed by Rob Winn Anderson, the show features Matthew Arter as Albin and Brian Minyard as Georges, and comes highly recommended. Call 407-877-4736 or visit

Sept. 25 – Orlando Museum of Art preview reception for …

The Orlando Museum of Art opens its fall season with a double opening of two exhibits that “speak to each other” in fascinating ways. Beginning at 7 p.m. on Sept. 25, we are invited to an opening reception for Harold Garde and MetaModern, both of which deal with the concept of “modern” and both of which open on Sept. 26.

Sept. 26 to Jan. 3 – ‘Harold Garde: Mid-Century to This Century’

Harold Garde is a living legend. A brilliant working artist who still paints every day, Garde’s extraordinary career spans over 70 years. Graduating from Columbia University in 1951, Garde was immersed in the New York art world just as abstract expressionism brought the world’s attention to New York City. Garde’s paintings reflect his engagement with this movement as the spirit of creativity and discovery has remained central to Garde’s work. “Harold Garde: Mid-Century to this Century” brings together 35 paintings that highlight the breadth of Garde’s career.

Sept. 26 to Dec. 6 – MetaModern at Orlando Museum of Art

In the fresh and provocative work presented in MetaModern, contemporary artists refer both literally and conceptually to iconic design objects of the mid-20th century. This exhibit includes video, sculpture and works on paper by 19 international artists. Call 407-896-4231 or visit

Sept. 25 to Oct. 3 – Theater students at Rollins College present ‘Reefer Madness’!

“Reefer Madness” is a tongue-in-cheek musical that pokes satirical fun at the now infamous 1938 propaganda film of the same name. Jimmy and Mary are a clean-cut high school couple until they are lured into trouble by (shock!) evil marijuana pushers. By smoking the evil weed, Jimmy and Mary soon move from merry-making to misery to misdeeds and murder. Offering contemporary audiences a timely message about the cost of fear-mongering, the performances are presented for mature audiences by theater students at Rollins College in Winter Park. Call 407-646-2145 or visit

Sept. 25 and 26 – Celebrity impersonators at the Sunburst Convention Imagine Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, Cher, Dolly Parton, Ed Sullivan and a host of other celebrities performing for you – live – on-stage in Orlando. That is exactly what happens when the Sunburst Convention celebrity impersonators hold their annual conference at the Florida Hotel (at the Florida Mall). They’re performing for booking agents and other suits, but the public is invited to the showcases – from noon to 2 p.m. and 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Sept. 25 and again from 1 to 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 26. It’s the kind of entertainment you expect in Vegas, but with all these “famous” performers together in one place it’s constant fun. Visit

Sept. 26 – Orange County Regional History Center’s 15th birthday … with cake

Orange County Regional History Center staff and volunteers invite the community to join them on Sept. 26 as they celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Museum’s debut in downtown Orlando. Visitors are invited to toast the Center with a slice of cake (served from 1 to 5 p.m.), snap photos with a giant cake, and write messages that will become a part of Central Florida’s historical record. The History Center opened in late September 2000 at 65 E. Central Boulevard after a decade-long renovation of the site. Visit or call 407-836-8500

Sept. 26 – Rhino Day at the Central Florida Zoo

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sept. 26 we are invited to celebrate Jahi and PJ, the Central Florida Zoo’s greater one-horned Indian rhinos. By participating in crafts, games, and a chance to get up close and touch a rhino, we are helping support rhino conservation and working to save these incredible animals from extinction. This event is included in Zoo admission; additional fees may apply. Call 407-323-4450, ex. 100, or visit

Sept. 26 – Artlando – One day, one festival, all the arts

From 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sept. 26, Loch Haven Park in Orlando becomes Artlando, a free day to celebrate all the arts with 80-plus artists displaying, selling and creating art. An outdoor performance stage will showcase groups from the Orlando Ballet to Orlando Fringe, while the Kids’ Zone offers the Philharmonic Petting Zoo, chalk art, balloons, and live painting. Programming goes from family-friendly during the day to edgy as Artlando After Dark offers a “night-life” experience. The air-conditioned Orlando Museum of Art offers exhibits in its participating galleries. Visit Artlando on Facebook.

Sept. 27 – Juan Carlos Salazar sings in tribute to Simon Diaz

Juan Carlos Salazar is a Venezuelan singer, musician and composer with over 25 years of performing internationally. He has recorded 12 solo albums in a career during which Juan Carlos has participated in concerts featuring singers including Julio Iglesias and Jose Jose. His concert at 7 p.m. on Sept. 27 at the Dr. Phillips Center will be a tribute to the popular Venezuelan composer Simon Diaz, the author of "Caballo Viejo,” later recorded as "Bamboleo." Juan Carlos will be accompanied by six Venezuelan musicians. Call 844-513-2014 or visit

Oct. 1 to 10 – Corey Volence’s ‘Realms of the Untold’ at the Venue

“Realms of the Untold” by Corey Volence will make its world premiere at The Venue at 511 Virginia Drive in Orlando from Oct. 1 to 10. “Realms of the Untold” is an anthology of short plays by Corey Volence, scriptwriter of the award-winning 2013 Orlando Fringe musical “Key of E.” The six new plays are written in a style meant to evoke classic horror and science fiction shows such as “The Twilight Zone” and “Outer Limits.” Produced by Dark Side of Saturn, the plays are directed by Kent Vanderberg, Samantha Malloy, and Corey Volence. For tickets, visit or call 209-479-9923.

Oct. 2 to 18 – ‘Into the Woods’ with the new CFCArts Theater Group

Quality work at $10 a ticket has been the gift of Central Florida Community Arts to our community, and that gift was recently acknowledged with a donation of over $20,000 to support CFCArts’ new theatre program. The donation allows CFCArts to offer a season of five fully-staged productions beginning with Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods” from Oct. 2 to 18. A Broadway hit before its recent movie version, the witty Sondheim “do-over” of Grimm’s Fairy Tales is a perfect opener as it appeals to audiences of all ages. Congratulations to Joshua Vickery and Donald Rupe of CFCArts for yet another gift to Central Florida. Visit or contact [email protected].

Oct. 3 – The GLBT Community Center’s 1920s fundraiser

Shove the disco duds back in the closet (see Sept. 25), and up the glam with spats, flappers, pinstripes, and fedoras – and practice your Charleston. The GLBT Community Center of Central Florida presents its big event of the year on Oct. 3 with 100 percent of monies raised for the Center. The evening will include a four-course dinner, open bar all night, Vegas-style casino, live and silent auctions, jazz band entertainment and dancing. Help the Center grow and strengthen their counseling, medical and other services provided to the community by calling 407-228-8272 or visiting

Current – Second Harvest Food Bank and Hunger Action Month

September is Hunger Action Month, and food banks across the country have created a nationwide effort to fight hunger. It’s devastating to believe, but here in Central Florida, one out of every six people faces hunger, and each of them needs our help. Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida invites the community to participate in 30 Ways in 30 Days. To take action, Second Harvest’s website lists activities that can be done each day to close the gap on hunger. “Even the smallest investment can make a tremendous difference, and there is no better time than now to join an effort that has a real and long-lasting impact,” says Dave Krepcho, CEO of Second Harvest. Visit

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