Tag Archives: Artegon Marketplace

Happy Thanksgiving from Central Florida Top 5! Why are you thankful?

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! We are thankful to you, dear reader, for your continued support! This year has been a tough one for each of us at Central Florida Top 5, for a multitude of reasons. It goes without saying that 2016 has been very tough for our friends and neighbors in Orlando. However, we still have much for which to be thankful in (cheerful) spite of it all.

I asked our Top 5 Team, regardless of how they felt about the holiday itself, why they were thankful and for what. I also asked the team to share a Local/Holiday #ProTip, or a unique way that we in Central Florida spend the holidays; fun things that maybe those outside of Central Florida may not have heard of or have the opportunity to do in their areas.

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Here’s what they wanted to share with all of you;

 

Jen Lee BioAuthor and Top 5 Lake County Contributor, Jennifer Lee:

This year I am thankful for my health. I had my thyroid removed, I’m cancer-free, and doing well on medication, thanks to the online pharmacyhttps://www.ukmeds.co.uk/ which provides me with it. I’m also thankful to LEASH, Inc for the work they do to save pets in Lake County and for bringing our three new cats into our lives.

We’re not doing it this year, but a very Central Florida way to spend Thanksgiving is to enjoy the buffet at the Swan and Dolphin, then walk it off around Disney’s Boardwalk.

Holiday #ProTip: Take part in Small Business Saturday in Downtown Mount Dora! Lots of great shops, including an indie bookstore. Get a jump start on your Christmas shopping, then stay for Light Up Mount Dora!

 

 

Joe Thoma

 

CEO of Awareness Campaign and Top 5 Charitable/Arts Contributor, Joe Thoma:

I am most thankful for friends, family and colleagues.
* My true friendships in 2016 have transcended the strife and tumult of mere world, national and local problems, issues and politics.
* Family is more of a blessing each year. Partly because we all appreciate the precious gift of time with each other. (And partly because we’ve all gotten too old to start or maintain feuds!)
* Colleagues: I have connected with great new team members all over the world. My longtime teammates have strengthened our working ties and built on our combined strengths to do good work, have good fun and make good money.

Florida is blessed with a lot of casual attitudes. So Thanksgiving in Central Florida offers the opportunity to cherry pick the best traditions and dump the tedious parts. We’re such a diverse lot — Don’t like turkey? Do like many Italian families Up North and have lasagna, bracciole and even some pizza. Or go Puerto Rican with Pavochon, Mofongo stuffing and Arroz con Gandules. Or, like me, go out for a steak. If tragedy strikes, you can be sure to count on an experienced Nightclub Shooting Attorney in Clearwater

Holiday #ProTip: Great time to enjoy some lightly attended days at the theme parks before the Christmas rush. Google “disney world crowd calendar 2016” without the quotation marks.

 

Top 5 Contributors Carolyn Capern and Greg Trujillo (CT Social)

Top 5 Contributors Carolyn Capern and Greg Trujillo of CT Social

Digital storyteller at , Top 5 Web Team & Contributor, Carolyn Capern:

This Thanksgiving 2016, I am thankful for a healthy year and a year spent largely on projects that felt like they mattered. I’m thankful for the city leaders that are still working hard on issues like homelessness and making Orlando more green.

Spending Thanksgiving in Central Florida is the ideal time to get outside for a walk. Find a trail or a park or just head to a walkable downtown area like Lake Eola.

Holiday #ProTip: Don’t miss the Festival of Trees at Orlando Museum of Art! And after your Thanksgiving feasting, get in the festive mood by checking out the Orlando Philharmonic’s ‘Home For The Holidays’ concert this Saturday.

 

 

David B 1

 

Pro MLS Supporter and Top 5 Orlando City Soccer Club Contributor, David Blair:

Thanksgiving weekend is a good time for the family. I am thankful for my family. My beautiful wife and healthy little girl.

 

Local & Holiday #ProTip: If you have never been to the Old Spanish Sugar Mill and Griddle House in DeLeon Springs, go! They’re open Monday – Friday 9:00am to 4:00pm, and Saturday, Sunday, & Holidays from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Check out their website at: http://www.oldspanishsugarmill.com/.

 

 

 

Kari KleinCo-Host of Nerd Flix & Chill podcast and Top 5 Foodie Contributor, Kari Klein:

This year I’m thankful for friends who are more like family and a newfound ability to un-apologetically say ‘no’ as well as ‘yes’ – (see below)

I am celebrating Thanksgiving this year by getting a tattoo – no it’s not themed to the holiday and the date wasn’t planned, but when it’s a difficult place to get into and there’s an opening, you take it….or at least I did. It’s what the pilgrims would have wanted.  

Holiday #ProTip – Be patient and allow for extra time if traveling. Don’t let a few minutes of frustration (or more if you’re on I-4) ruin your whole day.

 

 

Allen Paschel

Central Florida Top 5’s Business and Tech Writer, Allen Paschel:

I am most thankful for scientists, engineers, and dreamers that brought us new technology in 2016.

A great, different way to celebrate Thanksgiving in Central Florida is to enjoy many of the great local restaurants that will be open for travelers visiting the area. If you haven’t bought your turkey or you’ve chickened out. Use Open Table to book a reservation!

Holiday #ProTip: his will be the first weekend with 300 DRONES flying over Disney Springs for an amazing light show called “Starbright Holidays – An Intel Collaboration.” They’ll have nightly shows from now until January 8 at 7pm and 8:30pm. Check them out!

 

John DiDonnaCreator/Director of Phantasmagoria Orlando and Top 5 Arts Contributor, John DiDonna:

“Thankful for a community that can come together in times of fear and duress, thankful for families to support and love. Thankful that through personal and community tragedies that people are people – capable of so much love in the face of so much of the opposite.

Thankful for our community leaders like Buddy Dyer and Patty Sheehan who show us what commitment is – not just to budgets and planning – but to the hearts of all in Central Florida.”

 

 

 

Chris Collins

Filmmaker and Top 5 Guest Contributor, Christopher Collins:

“I am thankful to be alive. A year ago, I was in a car accident that could have ended my life. Obviously I survived, but the injury to my left foot & the trauma of the accident is something that has affected me even to this day, perhaps for the rest of my life, so I have to get the best Car accident lawyers to get compensation for that.
I have also the best Court Reporters from Naegeli Nationwide.
nationwide court reporters provide the most experienced and reliable court reporting in the country. We allowed NAEGELI to free you to focus on what you do best: Litigate your case.

With the help of my family & friends, I was able to recover from that accident, and this Thanksgiving I am grateful that I am still able to spend time with the ones I love.

 

 

 

Kelly Sharkey

Owner of SeaWorldMommy.com and Top 5 Contributor, Kelly Green:

I’m thankful for today. I’m not promised anything more than that. This year has been rough… for our community, for my family in some ways… and I’m reminded how brief this life is. I’m thankful for the opportunity to be kind to strangers, to forgive wrongs, and to press on to new beginnings.

Life #ProTip: Even if you aren’t thrilled with how you’re looking this holiday season, get in pictures with your friends and family! This is the only holiday season 2016 you’ll have. Remember it. Capture it. Relive it through photos. You’ll be glad you have those moments captured.

 

 

Jay DLSCinematographer and Top 5 Pop Culture Contributor Jay De Los Santos:

This year I’m just thankful to have a steady job! Florida’s entertainment incentive is next to non-existent right now, and finding film and tv work has been challenging not to mention next to impossible. My hope is that this will all turn around in the next few years so I can work in my field. In the meantime, I plan on joining Film Florida in 2017 so I can be part of this change.

Holiday #ProTip: Can’t wait for Amazon Prime to deliver? Shop Local Pop Culture! Hit up (not so) hidden gem Gods and Monsters at Orlando’s Anti Mall, Artegon Marketplace for unique and hard to find t-shirts, figures, comics, art, and more!”

 

Rich Bio

Co-Host of Over A Beer podcast and Top 5 Contributor, Rich Belsan:

I’m of course thankful for my family, friends, and amazing girlfriend. I’m also thankful for the continued growth and support of Over a Beer.

For a #ProTip? If you’re looking for some good beer for the holiday there are great breweries in town like Hourglass Brewing.

 

Host/Producer of FilmSlam at Enzian and Top 5 Managing Editor, Jen Vargas:

For the past two years, my reason for being thankful hasn’t changed. I am most thankful for my mom’s oncologist, Dr. Kalpesh Barot and his team at Southwest Cancer Center. They are the reason my mom is still around for another Thanksgiving, and words cannot pay enough tribute to Dr. Barot and his team for all they’ve done for her. Thank you, Dr. Barot!

Holiday #ProTip: If the elections come up at the dinner table, make sure to have Adele queued up.

A unique way to spend Thanksgiving in Central Florida? There are so many! We don’t have snow but if you’d like to see it, catch Now Snowing in the Town of Celebration from now through December 31st! Or catch ICE! at Gaylord Palms featuring A Charlie Brown Christmas! I’m a lifelong Snoopy fan and cannot gush enough about this year’s Peanuts theme. Bring gloves, a hat, and a scarf though – it’s only 9 degrees in there!

 

Brian might bring his Blogger Award from Give Kids The World!

Brian and his Blogger Extraordinaire Award from Give Kids The World!

And finally, Top 5 Owner (who we all miss!) and Contributor, Brian Wilson:

This year I am most thankful for my health, my parents, my brothers, and their families. So happy I get to be close to them right now.

A unique thing to do Central Florida I’d suggest making time to get to a national park or trail or something historic or special to you and yours.

My holiday #ProTip is to make time to do something with a friend or family member this season, or make something, whether it is a card, a letter, or go to a local arts event vs buying a gift – so something vs buying something – I love candles but a coffee date with a friend can be priceless.

 

THANK YOU, TOP 5 READERS!

Artegon Marketplace Events: October 2015

Artegon Marketplace Orlando (Orange)

Here’s what’s going on at Artegon Marketplace in the month of OCTOBER!

For a listing of even more signature and special events, click over to Artegon’s calendar here.


ART AND WINE STROLL

MONTHLY (3rd Saturday), JUNE 20, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

The third Saturday of every month features this FREE art, food and wine stroll through the Village at Artegon Marketplace. Mingle with artisans displaying their hand-crafted items and art while enjoying complimentary bite-sized treats, wine from Orlando’s own Quantum Leap Winery, and the jazz jams of a live three-piece band.

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS

MONTHLY (4th Friday), JUNE 265:00pm – 9:00pm

Artegon Marketplace’s Food Truck Friday truck rally held on the fourth Friday of every month returns on April 24. Gather on Artegon’s front patio for live music, entertainment and a kaleidoscope of food options, plus savor a unique deal: bring a purchase receipt of at least $10 from The Village at Artegon Marketplace to guest services and redeem for $5 in Food Truck Bucks.

About Artegon Marketplace Orlando:

Artegon Marketplace Orlando is a 1.1 million-square-foot shopping attraction and artisan marketplace that has transformed Orlando shopping into a new kind of experience. Located on the north end of International Drive and catering to local residents and visitors, alike, Artegon Marketplace is the area’s destination for one-of-a-kind stores, shops and foods. Unique to the shopping attraction is The Village at Artegon Marketplace, housing 165 artisanal shops and stores where local craftspeople sell and demonstrate their products and services. Guests can also discover the area’s only Bass Pro Shops, Ron Jon Surf Shop, Sheplers Western Wear and Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, plus climb a ropes course, take in a movie at Cinemark Theaters, and much, much more.  For operating hours, directions and more information, visit Artegon Marketplace Orlando (ArtegonOrlando.com.) Like on Facebook and Follow on Twitter and Instagram #ArtegonMarketplace. The center is owned and operated by Paragon Outlet Partners, LLC, considered one of the most influential and forward-thinking development firms in the nation’s retail real estate industry.

Artegon Marketplace Events: September 2015

Artegon Marketplace Orlando (Orange)

Here’s what’s going on at Artegon Marketplace in the month of SEPTEMBER!

For a listing of even more signature and special events, click over to Artegon’s calendar here.

THE ART OF BEER

MONTHLY (2nd Tuesday), SEPTEMBER 8, 5:00pm 8:00pm

Mark your calendar to join ‪‎Artegon Marketplace for The Art of Beer from 5:00-8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 8. Enjoy a night of craft beers plus live music and tantalizing treats, all for FREE (while supplies last). Sip freshly poured ales at multiple beer stations sprinkled throughout The Village and learn about the brews from the culinary experts at Edible Orlando; munch on fresh beef supplied by the Florida Cattlemen’s Association at the Fuddruckers® burger bar; then meet Dirty Jim from Real Radio 104.1’s “Monsters in the Morning,” who will have giveaway prizes on hand. Mingle with the artisans from The Village at Artegon Marketplace, and discover a new way to shop local.

COLOR THERAPY YOGA

MONTHLY (2nd Sunday), SEPTEMBER 13, 11:00am – 12:00pm

Stretch, relax and awaken your visual senses with Yogart Color Therapy Yoga presented by Loft 55. Held in the center’s Community Room, classes are donation based and led by various Orlando area certified yoga Instructors.


ART AND WINE STROLL

MONTHLY (3rd Saturday), SEPTEMBER 196:00pm – 8:00pm

Savor a FREE art, gift and wine stroll through the Village at Artegon Marketplace. Mingle with artisans displaying their hand-crafted items and art while enjoying complimentary bite-sized treats, wine from Orlando’s own Quantum Leap Winery and live music. September’s stroll will feature jazz ensemble and non-profit group Legacy from Central Florida Community Arts, consisting of volunteer professional musicians, many performing in local theme parks.

 

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS

MONTHLY (4th Friday), SEPTEMBER 255:00pm – 9:00pm

Artegon Marketplace’s Food Truck Friday truck rally held on the fourth Friday of every month returns on April 24. Gather on Artegon’s front patio for live music, entertainment and a kaleidoscope of food options, plus savor a unique deal: bring a purchase receipt of at least $10 from The Village at Artegon Marketplace to guest services and redeem for $5 in Food Truck Bucks.

 

About Artegon Marketplace Orlando:

Artegon Marketplace Orlando is a 1.1 million-square-foot shopping attraction and artisan marketplace that has transformed Orlando shopping into a new kind of experience. Located on the north end of International Drive and catering to local residents and visitors, alike, Artegon Marketplace is the area’s destination for one-of-a-kind stores, shops and foods. Unique to the shopping attraction is The Village at Artegon Marketplace, housing 165 artisanal shops and stores where local craftspeople sell and demonstrate their products and services. Guests can also discover the area’s only Bass Pro Shops, Ron Jon Surf Shop, Sheplers Western Wear and Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, plus climb a ropes course, take in a movie at Cinemark Theaters, and much, much more.  For operating hours, directions and more information, visit Artegon Marketplace Orlando (ArtegonOrlando.com.) Like on Facebook and Follow on Twitter and Instagram #ArtegonMarketplace. The center is owned and operated by Paragon Outlet Partners, LLC, considered one of the most influential and forward-thinking development firms in the nation’s retail real estate industry. On other marketing articles read more here : https://hustlelife.net/salehoo-review/.

Welcome to Artegon Marketplace, Gods & Monsters!

Are you a Marvel or a DC? Old School or New School Whovian? White Walkers, Imperial Walkers, or The Walking Dead? Doesn’t matter what your nerd niche is, Gods & Monsters has you covered.

Orlando’s newest (and largest) comics shop opened at Artegon Marketplace on June 13, 2015, and I’ve already gotten that wrong, because calling Gods & Monsters “just” a comics shop does it a massive disservice.  On their website, they call themselves “the evolution of the pop culture retail experience,” and to be quite honest, I can’t think of a better way to describe it.  The massive, 18,898 square-foot space includes the Transmetropolitan Gallery (a spot for local artists to showcase pop-culture themed work) and the Offworld L.O.U.N.G.E. (a great lounge area to relax, eat, and play tabletop games).

The grand opening was a 12-hour mini-comicon, starting with the ceremonial ribbon-cutting at 10:00 a.m., and continuing all day with appearances by cosplay models, aerial silk artists, a performance by Phantasmagoria, costume contest, and a silent auction raising funds to benefit Hero Initiative. Face painting! Local artists! Balloon art! It was an event that simply can’t be put into words.

My favorite part of Gods & Monsters so far is simply the attention to detail.  When I said they have everything covered, I meant it.  If there’s something you’re into, be it comics, games, or just about any kind of sci-fi or fantasy property, you’ll find it represented at Gods and Monsters.  I gasped out loud when I saw a collection of Dragonlance novels, only a few feet from a handful of Soujourn trade paperbacks.

Dragonlance

My own copies are a little more worn than these are.

Soujourn

Am I the only person who was happy to see Sojourn and Ruse get a brief second life after CrossGen when Marvel bought the properties? Just me? Okay.

sign

Even the warning signs are cheeky.

With its prime location at the Artegon Marketplace, Gods & Monsters is bound to become a popular tourist destination, and fits in wonderfully with the space there.  But locals, don’t let the tourists have all the fun.  Gods & Monsters has great potential as a hangout, especially once the promised noodle bar opens in the Offworld L.O.U.N.G.E.  Ramen and Cards Against Humanity? Count me in!

Artegon Marketplace Events: June 2015

Artegon Marketplace Orlando (Orange)

Here’s what’s going on at Artegon Marketplace in the month of JUNE!

For a listing of even more events, check out more things to do here.

GAY DAYS ORLANDO KICKOFF PARTY

TUESDAY, June 2, 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Join Gay Days as we kick off the 25th Gay Days Orlando at Artegon Marketplace on Tuesday, June 2nd. Enjoy music, this year’s Miss Gay Days Pageant contestants and more. General admission tickets are for cash bar.  VIP tickets are $50.00 (Advance Only), General Admission tickets are $10.00 Advance/ $15.00 Door.  To purchase tickets please visit this website.

ROCK ART SHOW!

FRI/SAT/SUN, June 5-7, 10:00am – 9:00pm

The 105.9 Sunny Rock Art Show features signed artwork created by Rock Stars, Famous Rock photographs, limited edition gold records, classic concert posters and more, plus a special selection of Rolling Stones artwork!.  It’s a visual history of Rock & Roll.  Special guest appearance by Ron Campbell, animator on the Beatles film Yellow Submarine and Director of the Saturday Morning Beatles TV Cartoon series.  Ron will exhibit his cartoon artwork and paint new pieces live at the show.  The exhibit is free and all works are available to purchase.

GODS & MONSTERS GRAND OPENING CELEBRATION

SATURDAY, JUNE 13, 10:00am – 10:00pm

Gods & Monsters, the second largest comics, toys, collectibles and gaming venue in the U.S. is celebrating its grand opening inside Artegon Marketplace on Saturday, June 13th, 10am-10pm!!!

Come explore Gods & Monsters (and the Transmetropolitan Gallery and Offworld L.O.U.N.G.E. within) and enjoy 12 hours of entertainment, activities, art demos, contests and give-a-ways, all while raising money for the Hero Initiative!  Official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at 10am

This event is sponsored by: Hero Initiative, BART and Free Play Florida

https://www.facebook.com/events/1433721470272830/


ART AND WINE STROLL

MONTHLY (3rd Saturday), JUNE 20, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

The third Saturday of every month features this FREE art, food and wine stroll through the Village at Artegon Marketplace. Mingle with artisans displaying their hand-crafted items and art while enjoying complimentary bite-sized treats, wine from Orlando’s own Quantum Leap Winery, and the jazz jams of a live three-piece band.

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS

MONTHLY (4th Friday), JUNE 265:00pm – 9:00pm

Artegon Marketplace’s Food Truck Friday truck rally held on the fourth Friday of every month returns on April 24. Gather on Artegon’s front patio for live music, entertainment and a kaleidoscope of food options, plus savor a unique deal: bring a purchase receipt of at least $10 from The Village at Artegon Marketplace to guest services and redeem for $5 in Food Truck Bucks.

About Artegon Marketplace Orlando:

Artegon Marketplace Orlando is a 1.1 million-square-foot shopping attraction and artisan marketplace that has transformed Orlando shopping into a new kind of experience. Located on the north end of International Drive and catering to local residents and visitors, alike, Artegon Marketplace is the area’s destination for one-of-a-kind stores, shops and foods. Unique to the shopping attraction is The Village at Artegon Marketplace, housing 165 artisanal shops and stores where local craftspeople sell and demonstrate their products and services. Guests can also discover the area’s only Bass Pro Shops, Ron Jon Surf Shop, Sheplers Western Wear and Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, plus climb a ropes course, take in a movie at Cinemark Theaters, and much, much more.  For operating hours, directions and more information, visit Artegon Marketplace Orlando (ArtegonOrlando.com.) Like on Facebook and Follow on Twitter and Instagram #ArtegonMarketplace. The center is owned and operated by Paragon Outlet Partners, LLC, considered one of the most influential and forward-thinking development firms in the nation’s retail real estate industry, which can now be found in the best real estate app as well.

Speaking of market, please checkout more info on sintra boards here that you can use for your business marketing.

Artegon Marketplace Events: May 2015

Artegon Marketplace Orlando (Orange)

Here’s what’s going on at Artegon Marketplace in the month of MAY!

For a listing of even more events, check out more things to do here.

WEEKEND ENTERTAINMENT

SATURDAY, May 2, 1:00pm – 7:00pm

Enjoy a live Jazz Trio all day!

THOMPSON SQUARE LIVE at TOBY KEITH’S

SATURDAY, May 2, 9:00pm – 11:00pm

WEEKEND ENTERTAINMENT

SUNDAY, May 3, 1:00pm – 6:00pm

Enjoy a live Jazz Trio all day!

ORLANDO ART & WELLNESS EXPO

SATURDAY, MAY 16, 12:00pm – 7:00pm

Loft 55 Gallery & Boutique has partnered with Artegon Marketplace to present Orlando’s first-ever Art & Wellness Expo featuring over 100 craftspeople, artisans and wellness vendors. This is a FREE event for the public showcasing Central Florida’s cultural arts and natural health community. Highlights include color therapy yoga; workshops in art therapy and breathe-work/meditation; a live body painting competition using a Ivy and Wilde paint by numbers; aura photography; a community mural; guest speakers; raffles and giveaways; artists at work; live performances, DJs and more! Keynote guest speakers include medical expert and plant-based pharmacist Dustin Rudolph, author of the book “The Empty Medicine Cabinet.” More details, including a Call to Artists page at: https://www.facebook.com/events/1572537166353888/

This event is sponsored by: Loft 55 Gallery & Boutique; Artegon Marketplace; Defined Enterprises; Get a Board Foundation; Wolfefx Body Makeup; Cafe TuTu Tango


ART AND WINE STROLL

MONTHLY (3rd Saturday), MAY 16, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

The third Saturday of every month features this FREE art, food and wine stroll through the Village at Artegon Marketplace. Mingle with artisans displaying their hand-crafted items and art while enjoying complimentary bite-sized treats, wine from Orlando’s own Quantum Leap Winery, and the jazz jams of a live three-piece band.

CENTRAL FLORIDA DIECAST CLUB

SUNDAY, May 17, 11:00am – 4:00pm

Community Room; Diecast collectors from across Central Florida meet to sell, trade and talk about their diecast collectibles. All are welcome!

FOOD TRUCK FRIDAYS

MONTHLY (4th Friday), MAY 225:00pm – 9:00pm

Artegon Marketplace’s Food Truck Friday truck rally held on the fourth Friday of every month returns on April 24. Gather on Artegon’s front patio for live music, entertainment and a kaleidoscope of food options, plus savor a unique deal: bring a purchase receipt of at least $10 from The Village at Artegon Marketplace to guest services and redeem for $5 in Food Truck Bucks.

 

ARTEGON SKYTRAIL TEACHER APPRECIATION

Through May 25 (every Monday), 12:00pm – 9:00pm

Free admission with proof of educational profession. Great offers for school groups and non-profit organizations. Call 407-864-3447 for more information.

 

About Artegon Marketplace Orlando:

Artegon Marketplace Orlando is a 1.1 million-square-foot shopping attraction and artisan marketplace that has transformed Orlando shopping into a new kind of experience. Located on the north end of International Drive and catering to local residents and visitors, alike, Artegon Marketplace is the area’s destination for one-of-a-kind stores, shops and foods. Unique to the shopping attraction is The Village at Artegon Marketplace, housing 165 artisanal shops and stores where local craftspeople sell and demonstrate their products and services. Guests can also discover the area’s only Bass Pro Shops, Ron Jon Surf Shop, Sheplers Western Wear and Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill, plus climb a ropes course, take in a movie at Cinemark Theaters, and much, much more.  For operating hours, directions and more information, visit Artegon Marketplace Orlando (ArtegonOrlando.com.) Like on Facebook and Follow on Twitter and Instagram #ArtegonMarketplace. The center is owned and operated by Paragon Outlet Partners, LLC, considered one of the most influential and forward-thinking development firms in the nation’s retail real estate industry. Check out this website rescomdesigns.com for more information. Additionally, if you’re looking for a diverse array of homes from simple single story to massive beautiful estates with unique designs, search for www.offerpad.com to see

Exclusive Behind the Door Tour of Orlando’s Gods and Monsters

Co-founder Todd Fisher took Central Florida Top 5 on an exclusive tour of the first ever Gods & Monsters which opens on June 13th at the growing Artegon Marketplace! This new, revolutionary pop culture retail experience (and soon to be a not-at-all-secret cool geek headquarters) has been generating quite a buzz online with both nerds and n00bs. Unlike a third of our new Top 5 writers, I was unfamiliar with ‘geek culture’ before going in and honestly a little intimidated! Thankfully Todd Fisher, his business partner Anna and Mr. Online Sales Guy were very welcoming, friendly and super excited to show us around the space.

Gods & Monsters Logo

Many may be familiar with the phrase (or even song by Lana Del Rey) ‘Gods and Monsters’ in one way or another, but how did Orlando’s Gods & Monsters come to be? “Anna, my partner, and I have been in the retail genre game for… ever! I helped run ACME Superstore in Longwood for almost fifteen years, and she’s done her part in the local art community running galleries for just as long,” Todd said.

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect for both. “It was weird, we both got out of our current jobs at the same time an saw the potential for a team up, I was going to apply to the healthcare jobs canada if nothing would have come up. Just like in the comic books, ‘Wondertwin powers activate!’ She saw the potential of what I could bring to the table, and I saw the same. We decided to join forces and try something a little different than what a lot of places are currently bringing to market. A classier version of the current comic book store model.

GnM1

Side of Artegon Marketplace will look dramatically different on June 13th!

It’s a nearly 20,000 square foot space. It’s an enormous amount of space. We were originally looking at something much, much smaller and, frankly, more manageable… maybe 7,000 square foot. This awesome space kind of fell into our lap at a great deal and we couldn’t pass it up. It was too good to not to take the shot. I really think that the way we’re approaching it – with four separate business models under one roof – I think it can work.

Top 5 things to expect from the Gods & Monsters Grand Opening event on June 13th?

  • Live silk arialists
  • Phantasmagoria (created by our own John DiDonna!) will be performing
  • Tons of local cosplayers and a few secret cosplay celebrities
  • John Cerabino will reveal his new costume build (it’s a surprise)
  • Visiting artists including James Hance of Relentlessly Cheerful Art

Being an infrequent or first time visitor to such a place might make one feel like an outsider. Not so with Gods & Monsters. Everyone is welcome! They hope to be a community hub for all, whether you may be a reader, gamer, collector, fanboy or fangirl. “With a place like us and what we’re about is ALL about community,” Todd says. “Especially in the last several years, we’ve seen a huge upswing in the nerd community being more comfortable with itself. With it being such a staple on tv programming and movies, comic books are cool! When I was in elementary school it was decidedly uncool to be into comics and toys and all that stuff.

What happened? What event over time caused such a Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion nerdaissance? “Something happened in the last twenty years or so that really galvanized the nerd community and brought us together. ‘In our numbers we are stronger,’ “ Todd explains. “They say the geek shall inherit the Earth and… here we are. Obviously we see a potential to bring a community together and, hopefully, that translates to prosperity. It’s symbiotic; I think that we can bring them something and they can keep us afloat to keep giving them things. I’m very hopeful!

The plight of the small business owner is not lost on the team at Gods and Monsters. “It’s been nothing but constant frustration,” Todd says with a laugh.“We were set to open back in November but every kind of possible permitting issue or stumbling block – every possible thing that could possibly go wrong, went wrong. Murphy’s Law… what’s that Nietzsche quote? ‘Everything that doesn’t kill you makes you stronger?’ I am SO POWERFUL right now!

Tour time! If you can’t bear spoilers, DO NOT READ FURTHER. With 20,000 square feet under their ultility belts, they’ve got a ton of space to fill with nerdy goodness. This is a complete guided tour, so if you have fifteen minutes to spare, watch the video below for the turn-by-turn tour of the entire space front to back!

When you enter the front doors, if you turn around and look up you will see a very large mural by Orlando artist Earl Funk featuring Marvel characters; Rocket Raccoon, Spider-Man, Doc Ock, M.O.D.O.C., Storm and more.

Instagram: @EarlFunk

Orlando artist Earl Funk works on a large mural above the front doors

Turning back around, to the right you will see an Arkham Asylum themed register area. Even the experience in checkout will have really cool interactive components, which we won’t spoil for you. (Ok, it’s REALLY cool and Todd describes it in more detail in the video around the six minute mark.)

GnM Retail

Hard work is being put in by the Gods & Monsters team

In the middle of Gods and Monsters lives a vast retail staging area with lit showcases, toy kiosks and more. “We’ll have your toys, your statues, Hot Toys, Sideshow, Kotobukiya… I’m trying to get the stuff that not every place locally carries, to be that destination for the higher end stuff. And, to showcase that stuff with an eye towards respect that I think that product deserves. A lot of this stuff is art. This will give people an opportunity to see it in good lighting, properly displayed and the bonus is you can take that stuff home with you. That could be IN your home.”

Next is the Gotham themed New Comics and Kids section, both of which will take up a good portion of the right side wall. “We’ll have as wide a selection as I can muster of trade paperbacks on these really awesome (themed) pillar displays.”

Toward the back of the store is The Offworld L.O.U.N.G.E, a concession bar inspired by the Ridley Scott film BladeRunner. “At the beginning of the film he (Harrison Ford as Decker) is getting noodles at the White Dragon Noodle Bar, and we’re trying to theme it as closely to that as we can.” Yes, a noodle bar is also planned!

On the back wall will be a DJ booth/AV section for store atmosphere. Also, in this back section of the store will be themed gaming rooms (three sci-fi, three fantasy), a stage setup with projection and table seating for the concession area. A wall will separate this area from the front of the store and will have mood lighting that can be customized to any tournament, event, concert or gathering.

On the back left hand side of Gods and Monsters will live a fantasy themed gaming retail area that will be fully stocked with cards, dice and other gaming accessories. A large apparel section will neighbor this area; just look for the really cool cosmos, space themed mural. “Not a whole lot of places I find put a lot of money or floor space into an apparel section, and I think… people need clothes, specially a fancy tie from the John Henric UK tie collection. I’m a big fan,” Todd says dryly. A big selection of hats, logo tees, socks and maybe even pajamas will go here.

To the left of the apparel section will be two VIP rooms; one fantasy themed (closer to the gaming area), one sci-fi themed (closer to the side entrance). What’s that you say? A second entrance? Yep! “With the addition of a separate, outside entrance we can do our midnight openings, we can stay open late. Once our concession area opens in January or February, we’ll have beer and wine and can do late night events. We’re very excited about that!” (Oh, and you’ll enter the VIP rooms through a full size TARDIS from Doctor Who!)

The Transmetropolitan Gallery will showcase the work of artists in Central Florida and internationally!

The Transmetropolitan Gallery will showcase the work of artists in Central Florida and internationally!

Heading back to the front entrance is a 1,000 foot ‘high end nerd gallery’ called The Transmetropolitan Gallery, which will showcase original artwork, high value toys, comics and memorabilia. Comic and graphic novel readers will recognize two of the co-owners – Warren Ellis, after whom the gallery is named, and Neil Gaiman, author of the Sandman series among many other works.

ProTip: Neil Gaiman’s wife is Amanda Palmer. She gave THIS amazing TED Talk.

Also with this space comes a great opportunity for Central Florida artists to showcase their work. “We will be accepting submissions to put before a jury to vote on which pieces each month go up. Unless it’s a solo show, or celebrity comic artist show, which we’re planning to do several times a year. Not really (any) restrictions on medium types,” says Anna Young, Co-Founder of Gods & Monsters and Curator of the gallery.

Todd rocks

Co-Owner Todd Fisher, “It’s not always about the money… It’s about sharing this.”

We had to leave you with this great thought from Todd. If there’s one unforgettable takeaway from this post, this is definitely it: “Even if you’ve never picked up a comic in your life, we’re going to make sure – if we have to just give it to you – that you’re going to leave with a comic book in your hand. I want every day to be like Free Comic Book Day,” Todd shares. “It’s not always about the money. It’s not always about taking home a paycheck. It’s about sharing this. It’s about opening up (to) people who haven’t been exposed to this or don’t know the joy of opening up a comic book… or just don’t ‘get’ it. I want them to ‘get’ it. Our mission in all of this is to turn people on to comics, toys and to just show off the space and say ‘Look what you’ve been missing! Come! Let me show you this cool thing!‘”

Note to Artists: Submissions may be sent online or through Gods & Monsters’ Facebook page or by emailing anna(at)godmonsters.com with photos and info for the work submitted.

 

Gods & Monsters is located at 5250 International Drive, Suite E8, Orlando, FL 32819 (inside Artegon Marketplace).

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/godmonsters

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/GodsMonsters_FL

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