Tag Archives: winter park

Healthy Central Florida’s Bike to Work Day – March 8, 2017

Biking to work is fun, green and healthy! Join hundreds of riders and dozens of companies who will be fielding teams for this morale-boosting, team-building event.  Here’s how it works.

Wherever you live or work, you’re encouraged to ride your bike to work.  Or, or take your bike to work on your bike rack or SunRail.  Then, ride, drive or take SunRail to the Group Ride through beautiful Winter Park that leaves from Central Park at 4 pm.  We’ll start gathering for festivities at 3:30 pm.

The group ride will last about an hour with a police escort and rolling road closures.  You’ll tour through beautiful neighborhoods, parks and lakes.  More than 200 riders are expected.  The event is free and open to all (regardless of where you live – all cities are welcome to join us.)  Participants will receive a free event t-shirt while supplies last.

Bike to Work Day – Wednesday March 8th (rain date Mar. 9)

3:30 p.m. | Meet @ Central Park

4 p.m. | 45 minute – 1 hour Group Ride in Winter Park

5 p.m. | Healthy, Happy Gathering at Park Social (358 N. Park Ave.)

Registered participants will receive a FREE T-shirt (while supplies last).

Businesses can also register as a team for the Bike Friendly Company Challenge to win a prize package including being featured in a half-page color ad in the Observer and a free, catered team breakfast for up to 30 people.

Register below. For more info, visit Healthy Central Florida’s Facebook page, email info@healthycf.org, or call 407-599-3411.

Rain date is Thursday, March 9.

Move 60 Challenge

March 1st – April 29th

Get Moving, Have Fun and Win Prizes!

Be part of the MOVEment! Walk. Bike. Swim. Dance. Garden. Do yoga… Just get moving for 60 days!

And when you do, you’re entered to win great weekly prizes like mini-memberships to RDV Sportsplex, Fitbits, restaurant and movie gift certificates and more!

It’s Free, Fun and Easy. Register as an Individual or recruit a team of friends, co-workers, school/PTO parents or your faith community.

Free T-shirt and Timex Pedometer – Every registered participant will receive a super soft, free T-shirt and Timex pedometer while supplies last. And, everyone who participates is eligible for great weekly prize drawings. Win great health, more fun and great prizes – simply for being active.

Once you register, you’ll receive an automatic email reply acknowledging your registration. Bring your phone or print out that receipt as proof of registration to receive your t-shirt and/or pedometer.


  • Orlando: Track Shack
  • Winter Park: Winter Park Public Library, Winter Park Farmer’s Market (Saturday, Feb. 25 ONLY 7am – 1 pm)
  • Maitland: Maitland Public Library, RDV Sportsplex, Maitland Farmer’s Market (Sunday, Feb. 26 ONLY 9 am – 2 pm)
  • Eatonville: Healthy Eatonville Place

Join together as we become the healthiest community in the nation and Get Moving!

Special thanks to Healthy Central Florida Move60 sponsors – Florida Blue, Winter Park Health Foundation, Florida Hospital and the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce.

Join Move60 to walk, get fit, have fun and win prizes!

Watermelon 5k

Start your Independence Day the right way with a 5k! Join friends, family and neighbors for a morning celebration featuring ice cold watermelon and American pride. Watermelon eating contest, free kids run, and special perks for active and retired military.

For full details and to register, visit www.TrackShack.com

CFCArts Presents: Thriller

Spooky classics and unexpected songs perfect for the season.

This fall, you are invited to join the Central Florida Community Arts (CFCArts) Symphony Orchestra for a thrilling, chilling good time! Featuring pulse-pounding music ranging from The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and Night on Bald Mountain to Grim Grinning Ghosts and a thrilling Michael Jackson tribute, this will be the perfect soundtrack to your October adventures. Don’t miss this chance to hear Central Florida’s largest and most exciting symphony orchestra perform beloved classics and Halloween hits in ways you’ve never imagined!

Thriller will be performed at Calvary Assembly, 1199 Clay St. Winter Park, FL 32789, at 8:00pm on Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24. Tickets are on sale at http://cfcarts.com/thriller/. General Admission tickets are $10 each, and children age 12 and under will be admitted for free.

Ticketing problems or questions? Contact Sarah.Mattingly@cfcommunityarts.com

Aloma Bowl: An old favorite becomes new again

My family and I moved to Winter Park from Maitland in 1997. Any local will know this move is not terribly far. The edges of these small towns like Winter Park, Maitland and Casselberry all tend to blend together, even for longtime residents.

In my neighborhood, there are just things you do like grab a Philly Cheesesteak at Cappy’s, catch a live show at The Copper Rocket or Fairbanks Inn (RIP) or meet up with some friends at Aloma Bowl for Cosmic Bowling. These are places I still love going to. They’ve been around so long they’re as close to historic local monuments as one can get.

Aloma Bowl media preview

It’s a Grand ReoPINing!

Most bowling alleys have a somewhat retro, art decco look. When I walked into the revamped Aloma Bowl, it reflected a modern style and flavor while still maintaining the spirit of a traditional bowling alley. The seating in the bowling pits (32 lanes) were very modern and curvy, a great balance of kitschy aesthetic and comfort. I didn’t bowl this time but I will assuredly come back to bowl. The Redemption Arcade, the Brooklyn South Bar and Grill and lounge area immediately caught my eye, as did the new large screen TVs throughout. Over $500,000 was put into this reopening, and it certainly shows.

Brooklyn South Bar has twelve beers on tap and over twenty bottled options, domestic and import. They also have several craft selections as well as fully stocked liquor bar with nightly drink specials including $7 Domestic Pitchers during Happy Hour and $4 selected wells and calls. The first drink I tried from Brooklyn South Bar, named the Aloma Blue, was very similar to the first ever drink I had at Aloma Bowl years ago, which was a Blue Hawaii. It had lemonade, lime, vodka and blue Curaçao… it was very blue and even more tasty. I also tried their version of Sex on the Beach which was on par with others I’ve tried.

On the grill side, I tried the mini cheeseburger sliders, which were great. Each had cheddar cheese, grilled onions, pickle chips and thousand island dressing. The buffalo wings, I tried mild, hot and parmesan garlic, were also good. What I really liked was Brooklyn South’s Veggie Pizza! It was topped caramelized onions, mushrooms and peppers. Their pizza crust had a great flavor – it was like having a breadstick after you’ve finished. Brooklyn South’s Dips & Tortilla Chips were all really good. The Spicy Queso was delicious! The nacho cheese was chunky and incorporated, my best guess, a buffalo sauce flavor and maybe even some bleu cheese. (Menu online)

Cheeseburger Sliders and Spicy Queso

Cheeseburger Sliders and Spicy Queso

All told, the food was a lot better than I remember. Actual restaurant quality food as opposed to typical bar or bowling alley food, which one may eat simply because it’s there. I would definitely go back and have dinner at Brooklyn South Bar and Grill, even if I weren’t bowling.

Aloma Bowl’s game room, The Redemption Arcade, got a massive upgrade. Before they had maybe six arcade games – I used to love playing Sbobet88! Gone are the days of tokens. Now Aloma Bowl has a new refillable playcard system and a dozen or more games, including a really cool Batman game and a few games of chance that will keep the kids busy if mom and dad want to bowl for awhile.

Aloma Bowl logo

Aloma Bowl is inviting the public to their own ReoPINing celebration tomorrow, Friday, October 16th and Saturday, October 17th with buy one, get one free deals on bowling games, shoes and appetizers in Brooklyn South Bar and Grill!

Aloma Bowl

2530 Aloma Avenue

Winter Park, FL 32792

(407) 671-8675


Hours of Operation

Sunday – Thursday      9am to 12am

Friday – Saturday        9am to 2am

The Bistro on Park Avenue – Winter Park’s Hidden Gem

Being a relative newbie to Florida I love exploring and finding new restaurants and destinations throughout the state, and especially Central Florida. Winter Park was one of the first areas that we found shortly after our arrival in Florida and we’ve enjoyed the restaurants and shops on a regular basis.

That’s why I was surprised to find The Bistro on Park Avenue nestled back in a series of walkways that felt like a little slice of Europe. Walking back along the winding pathway that led to the restaurant, the juices were already flowing in anticipation…..sigh. And what I found did not disappoint.

The Bistro on Park Avenue, Winter Park

The dining room is simply gorgeous and has to be one of the more romantic dining rooms in the area.

The Bistro on Park Avenue, Winter Park

They have a very well rounded menu with a mixture of low country and European items like Shrimp and Grits, Wienerschnitzel and Crepes.  They also have a wonderful selection of appetizers, sandwiches and salads. You’ll find something for every appetite on the menu.   I went with one of the nightly specials Gluten Free Shepard’s Pie with Gruyere mashed potatoes and bacon, that Guest Chef Bob Aungst had prepared for the evening.

The Bistro at Park Avenue, Winter Park

I always love to see the chef visiting tables, it’s a nice personal touch that shows you that your patronage is appreciated. One of the owners, Erika Boesch, was also in the dining room making rounds chatting with her guests.  They get bonus points for very good and personalized service at the Bistro.

The Bistro at Park Avenue, Winter Park

My advice when dining at the Bistro on Park Avenue is to always save room for dessert, or maybe two.  All desserts are made in house by Erika and are gluten free with some dairy free options as well. I can personally verify the deliciousness having tried two desserts the night I was there. Pictured above is Key Lime Pie.  It was tart, sweet and oh so creamy. Served with whipped cream, a delightful lime drizzle and homemade vanilla ice cream.

The Bistro at Park Avenue, Winter Park

My second dessert was a Raspberry Breakfast Cake with a Raspberry pulled sugar garnish and homemade vanilla ice cream.  It was good night to be Chef Dennis not only for the good food, but for the good company and the fact that Lisa was very happy with the choice of restaurants for dinner.

The Bistro on Park Avenue is located at 348 North Park Avenue (in the Hidden Garden) in Winter Park.  It offers a variety of dining and entertaining possibilities with three dining rooms including the Atrium, The Chefs Table, Up stairs for private functions, a full bar, and  when weather permits outdoor dining in the Hidden Garden Courtyard.  They offer a happy hour each day from 5 – 7 extended till 10 on Thursdays and Brunch on Saturday and Sunday.  


Orlando Derby Girls vs. Sintral Florida Derby Demons

Come out to Semoran Skateway to see the Orlando Psycho City Derby Girls!! Our top travel team the Orlando Roller Derby – Straight Jackettes will be taking on the Sintral Florida Derby Demons !

Doors open at 4:30 and game starts at 5:00pm. Always at Semoran Skateway.

2670 Cassel Creek Blvd, Casselberry, FL 32707

Don’t get caught standing in the crowd… bring your own folding chairs for up-close track side seating. Chairs must have rubber bottoms and no heels ladies.

This is an all ages event.

Food and BEER will be available at the snack bar. Be sure to come by the MERCH table to grab so OPCDG tank tops, t-shirts, coozies, and much much more!

We will have a 50/50 raffle, so bring some cash!

After party will be directly after the game at Friendly Confines, Winter Park.

Any questions, check us out at – Orlando Psycho City Derby Girls


– OR –

Purchase from a derby girl in person! $8 In Person – $10 at the door!

The Bistro on Park Ave Announces Summer Guest Chef Series Featuring Chef Bob Aungst

The Bistro on Park Avenue is excited to announce that local Chef, Bob Aungst, will be highlighted in their “Summer Guest Chef” series on Friday, July 10th, 2015.  Chef Bob has been in the hospitality industry as a special events chef and manager for over 20 years, and has overseen the most prestigious sporting events and conventions around the country. The personal attention to detail Chef Bob gives every event ensures a unique and memorable experience.

The evening will feature a Chef Bob Signature Handcrafted, Gluten Free Three Course Menu starting with pan seared chanterelle mushroom risotto cakes complimented by a white wine and fresh thyme sauce.  Guests will have the choice between two entrees: Australian lollipop lamb chops with Chef Bob’s Signature mushroom shaped tri-color baby potatoes and fresh local vegetables, or a Red Snapper prepared en papillote (a steam pouch), with fresh local vegetables and a beurre blanc sauce. Owner Erika Boesch will personally prepare a light and refreshing blueberry cheesecake soufflé with a blueberry sauce to complete the third course.  Many of the ingredients for this decadent meal will be locally grown or sourced. All of the herbs will come from both Chef Bob’s and Erika’s personal gardens.  Chef Bob and The Bistro are strong advocates of shopping and supporting local, as well as farm, garden and ocean to table concepts. The menu can be ordered individually or at a special Prix Fixe price of $49.95 for all three courses. Gluten free, vegan and dairy-free options available. Please contact Chef Bob to arrange for dietary modifications.  A new limited edition of Chef Bob’s private label, locally roasted premium coffee will be handcrafted, small batch roasted, and served for this night only. Guests may purchase the limited edition roast at the restaurant between now and the event, or they may pre-order a 12oz. package for pickup that night ($14.99 per package).

There will be special seating options for the evening, as well. Reservations will be accepted for the Chef’s Table, seating 8, boasting a view of the kitchen, and central to the evening’s action. An elegant and intimate private loft on the second floor, seating twelve, can be reserved on a first come basis for parties of two, four or six.  The first twelve reservations will receive a commemorative package of the limited edition coffee.

Reservations for the Friday, July 10 event will be accepted from now until the restaurant is sold out. Please call The Bistro on Park Avenue at 407-539-6520 to reserve your space.

Find the event on social media:

Yelp: http://www.yelp.com/events/winter-park-guest-chef-bob-aungst-at-the-bistro-on-park-avenue

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1460649640899213/

About Chef Bob Aungst & The Bistro on Park Avenue

Chef Bob owns Rocks, Sticks & Hell, and is a private event chef and large event manager. His focus is on the content creation centered on culinary, hospitality and local partnerships through online platforms. He also overseas product development and production of the RS&H lines of small batch, locally roasted coffees, and gluten free and vegan flour blends. Chef Bob has served 3 U.S. Presidents, Royalty and 1,000’s of celebrities, world-class athletes and dignitaries. His chef signatures are hand crafted menus, gluten free cooking and baking, and a personal attention to every detail.

The Bistro on Park Avenue has been serving guests since 2006.  Located in the Hidden Garden Courtyard off Park Avenue in Winter Park, The Bistro has just been voted “The Most Romantic Restaurant in Orlando”. This Winter Park gem features a menu of German and American foods, as well as handmade desserts. They are open for lunch on Mondays, lunch and dinner Tuesdays through Sunday, and brunch on the weekends.

Bastille Day Bash

By Kelly Green
Aka SeaWorld Mommy

Oui oui! C’est fantastique! Audubon Park Garden District’s 7th annual Bastille Day Bash is this Saturday, July 11, 2015 and will feature all things magnifique. (It’ll kind of be like being in Paris, but without the traffic jams.)

Starting off the day is a crepe breakfast (savory or sweet crepes, $20 adults, $15 kids) by East End Market’s chef-in-residence Jessica Tantalo from 9:30 a.m.–11 a.m. to the sounds of the Gypsy Swing Trio.

Bring your beret for a free open-to-the-public French-themed street fair where you’ll enjoy the pop-up Rouge Rouge vintage market with seven unique vendors from 4–7 p.m. at Redlight Redlight Beer Parlour, 2810 Corrine Drive, Orlando.

From 4:30-7 p.m. enjoy the Fourth Annual Artisan Cheese and French Wine Pairing by East End’s ever fabulous La Femme du Fromage ($30; $25 APGD members; ticket required; $45 day of IF available), Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 1603 Winter Park Road, Orlando 32803. Chef Tonda will showcase five select wines, paired with five artisanal handmade cheeses, finished with a sweet treat.

Want to meet the Queen of France and of Navarre? From 6 – 9 p.m. the Street Fair continues with food trucks, crêpes, wine cooler , baguette fencing ( En garde!) and a Marie Antoinette photo booth. #FrenchQueenSelfie? Join in on the fun on Winter Park Road outside Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 1603 Winter Park Road, Orlando 32803.

Sadly the French-themed Dinner Party Project is sold out. Quel Dommage!


You can still head on over to Bikes Beans & Bordeaux at 7:30 (no cover!). Actually, you can hang out there all day if you like: the Tour de France will be live in the morning. They’ll have Mimosas, French beer (Kronenburg), French treats all day.

There won’t be a bridge with Locks of Love, BUT if you’d like to decorate something (in a way that doesn’t destroy a structure with weight) , enter the FREE Bastille Day Decorated Bicycle contest, since we love bycicles and hoverboards, we even got online in Technomono to find what is the hoverboard 300$ best? to get for our children. Bling it, flower it, encrust it with “locks” and then ride it to the street celebration outside Emmanuel Episcopal Church. They’ll be judged and prizes will be handed out around 8 p.m.

To purchase tasting or dinner tickets and for more information, visit the Audobon Park Gardens website or their Facebook page.

Winter Park High School Band Memorial Weekend Pops Concert

The Winter Park High School Bands will present two concerts in May to finish the band program’s 75th anniversary season. The Concert Band, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, and Freshman Jazz Band will perform an array of music that showcases the bands’ tradition of musical excellence.

The Memorial Weekend Pops Concert will be held on Friday, May 22, and will include lighter works by Frank Ticheli, Chuck Mangione, and John Philip Sousa. It will feature our second senior concerto winner, Matthew Mignardi, on the famous Carnival of Venice. The concert will conclude with a salute to our nation with performances of the Armed Forces Salute, America the Beautiful, and Stars and Stripes Forever!

Concert begins at 7:00 p.m. in the Ann Derflinger Auditorium on the Winter Park High School main campus, 2100 Summerfield Road, Winter Park, FL 32792. Admission is free, and the public is warmly invited to attend.

The Winter Park High School bands are under the direction of Director Christopher Blackmer, Christopher.Blackmer@ocps.net, and Associate Director Michael Clemente, Michael.Clemente@ocps.net.

Orlando – Please Don’t Redefine Us

Lately I’ve been reading numerous articles by extremely passionate Orlando-area citizens, who declare their love for the City Beautiful. They write about the thriving literary community, the bursting tech industry, the outstanding colleges and universities, and even the highly touted food and art scene.

And in nearly every article, each well-meaning writer relates angry disgust that media outlets from across the nation are just now discovering that Orlando isn’t a “cultural wasteland” after all. And as a by-product of that anger, every writer then wants to redefine who we are or wants to describe Orlando as having a rebirth. (As if all our greatness had disappeared until just recently!)

Perhaps this common theme of needing to redefine what Orlando is comes from the fact that most of these writers start their articles by explaining they moved to Central Florida “several years ago” for school or work or to retire. And like many, they didn’t expect to fall in love with the City and were thrilled to see how much it had to offer in the aforementioned literary, arts, food, tech et al. (How ironic they now take exception to the fact that outsiders don’t also know this.) These writers say, “You don’t know the real Orlando. We’re not just Disney.”

While I certainly appreciate these eager citizens wanting to tout how wonderful our area is, I find myself bristling at the term “redefining” because feels like we weren’t good enough before these people arrived in Central Florida and decided to give us a new definition.

You see, I was born and raised here, just like my mother was, and just like my grandmother was back in the 1800s. There are a number of us here, actually, native Central Floridians that have always known what Orlando is and don’t need new arrivals to suddenly tell us what we are and what we have.

We’ve Always Had a Literary Scene

Yes, even before Jack Kerouac.

Back in 1926 Rollins College began the Animated Magazine. Since paper and printing supplies were still in somewhat short supply due to the fairly recent first World War, then-college President Hamilton Holt decided that the articles should be read aloud on stage instead of printed. This turned into an annual event that used to draw thousands. In the crowd sat dignitaries from around the world, including Secretaries of State and even former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover.

Animated Magazine - Rollins College

Animated Magazine – Rollins College

The Animated Magazine lives on today, under the tutelage of editors like U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, and has helped bring about the annual Winter with the Writers, which is where I got to see Maya Angelou when she visited back in 2007.

With the Orlando Public Library opening in 1923, and the Zora Neale Hurston Festival operating for nearly 30 years now, this is just further evidence the literary scene is not having a rebirth but has quietly been here all along.

We’ve Always Had an Art Scene

One of the nation’s oldest, largest, and most prestigious art festivals happens right here at the Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival. The Orlando Museum of Art was established in 1924, the Maitland Art Center in 1937, and we’ve had the Crealde School of Art and Jamali for over 40 years now. Add in the Polasek Museum and the world’s largest collection of Tiffany glass at the Morse Museum, and we’re doing just fine.

Albin Polasek

Albin Polasek

Famed actor Buddy Epsen’s father started the Central Florida Ballet Company in 1945. “I dared not start a ballet company here in Orlando because the idea seemed hopeless,” Epsen was quoted as saying. “Now there are several companies throughout Florida.” Epsen’s company was later taken over by Edith Royal, whose “Ballet Royal” supplied generations of dancers to the great stages of the world.

And even earlier, Ruth Pounds started a dance school in 1935, which taught both my mother and then me how to dance, sit, curtsy, and all the etiquette required of a cultured young adult.

The area has always had beautiful architecture thanks to those like Gamble Rogers, II, who helped create the beauty that attracted leading artists, business tycoons, and top politicians to settle in the area.

When President Dwight Eisenhower dedicated the opening of the basement radio station at Rollins College (still one of the longest-running basement radios in the country), we made indie radio hip long before we made boy bands hip in the 1990s. You can check brief history of radios at Radio Waves.

We’ve Always Had a Tech Scene

Lockheed Martin opened its doors in 1956. (My mother worked there afternoons in high school!) Shortly thereafter, the Kennedy Space Center was built nearby to oversee the Apollo missions. We watched those missions, and later those of the Space Shuttle, right from our backyards – and I’m pretty sure it doesn’t get much cooler than that!

Kennedy Space Center

Kennedy Space Center

Thankfully this tech industry also had a need for engineers; thus UCF was founded in 1963 and has grown into one of the largest universities in the nation. Add in the innovations of Walt Disney in the 70s, and then Full Sail University in the 80s, and yep, we’ve always had a tech scene.

We’ve Always Had a Food Scene

Food trucks did not make the food hip in this city.

We’ve always had great food, ranging from Dixie Crossroads and La Cantina to Le Cordon Bleu and Gary’s Duck Inn. From the 94th Aero Squadron, which served incredible food since World War I, to Ronnie’s Diner which opened in 1956, Orlando always had talked-about food. The fact that the establishments serving that food is changing, doesn’t mean there weren’t great restaurants before the new ones arrived.

Ronnie's Diner

Ronnie’s Diner

With T.G. Lee Dairy and the many orange groves, we’ve always been farm-to-table. And when you add in Publix (founded in 1930), we were doing just fine long before this so-called rebirth.

We’re Growing, Not Rebirthing

Yes, it is an exciting time to be in Orlando. We are growing in many different, wonderful ways. Newcomers are bringing great assets, and companies are setting up roots and investing here. With strong leadership we will continue to flourish.

And while I admire the zeal these newcomers use to tell the rest of the world how great Orlando is, please don’t act like this is a new development in Orlando’s history. Don’t call it a rebirth or try to redefine it.

We are who we are, and always have been.

We don’t want to be New York, San Francisco, or even Austin. We want to be who and what we already are. We’re orange groves and Disney. We’re tech and and old-fashioned books. We’re art and great food.

But, we’re not the best thing since sliced bread… we were cool long before that hit the world back in 1930!

This guest post was written by Bess Auer, fourth generation Floridian and the first editor of the Central Florida Top 5. You can connect with her on Twitter at @Bess_Auer.

Derby on Park to benefit the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation

Presented by Mercedes-Benz of Orlando

The Two Week Black-out period has ended for our members. We have quite a few tickets left and available for Grandstand Admission. Our Millionaire’s Row tickets are almost 50% sold out. We recommend you buy either ticket in advance to reserve a spot at the event. The venue has limited capacity.

The exciting ambience of the well-renowned annual Kentucky Derby is brought right here to Winter Park. This themed event boasted unlimited craft beer and wine along with samplings of delicious food and desserts from various local vendors for all in attendance. Guests were encouraged to dress in their finest Derby attire with prizes for best-dressed in several categories. A live broadcast of the Kentucky Derby, Fashion show and live entertainment, the prestige and energy of this coveted signature event provides our guests with the most sophisticated and stylish afternoon outside of Churchill Downs.

$60 Grand Stand(General Admission)- 200 Available
$100 Millionaires Row(VIP Admission)- 50 Available – Dedicated Catered Area, Private Viewing Area, Premium Alcohol, Dedicated Service Staff, Complimentary Valet, Keepsake.

Both Tickets Will Include the following:

John & Shirley’s Catering – Offering Johnny’s Chicken Kabob
4 River’s Smokehouse – Smoked Pig.
Carmel Kitchen – Beef Short Ribs & Mixed Vegetables.
Catered Fit – TBD
Premium Beverage Sponsors
Brown Distributing – Several different types of craft beer samples.
Deep Eddy Vodka – Mixed Flavored Craft Cocktail Samples
Tree House – Craft Cocktails like Cucumber Gimlet, Basil Lemonade, Red Velvet Cake, need we say more…..

Runway contest – 6:30 PM for Women’s Best Hat ~ Women’s Best Dressed, Men’s Best Dressed, & Best Dressed “Couple”. $500 value gift baskets consisting of various prizes given to winners.
Tickets are limited to the first 250 purchased as stated Venue has capacity limits and restrictions. Designated Lanyards will be provided and required for event.

It’s more than an event…it’s a memory!

Good Morning Winter Park: UCF Downtown Update

Good people of Winter Park, have you ever attended a “Good Morning Winter Park” gathering?

In case you weren’t aware, Good Morning Winter Park is a free, open to the public monthly gathering which includes a complimentary continental breakfast. This gathering is held on the second Friday of each month (upcoming schedule below). Chamber members, residents and community leaders discuss important, timely topics with rotating guest speakers to gain new community perspectives on community issues.

This month’s topic is all about the new UCF Downtown expansion! Learn more about it and hear from key leaders of the University of Central Florida about the current process of program decisions, next steps and their timeline.

Good Morning Winter Park Logo

When: Friday, April 10th, 2015 at 7:45am (networking), 8:15am (program)

Where: Winter Park Welcome Center, 151 Lyman Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789

Topic: UCF Downtown Update

Scheduled Speakers include:

  • Paul Lartonoix, Assistant Vice Provost, UCF
  • Fred Kittinger, Senior Associate VP of University Relations & Director of State and Local Gov’t Affairs, UCF
  • Mike Kilbride: UCF

2015 Upcoming Program Dates:

  • May 8
  • June 12
  • July 10
  • August 14
  • September 11
  • October 9
  • November 13
  • December 11

Top 5 Fun Places to Hunt Easter Eggs

Something about bunnies and grass make the park seem like the right place for an Easter Egg hunt, but that hippity, hoppity Easter Bunny likes to mix it up sometimes, just like the rest of us. Skip the traditional park hunt and get the kids out somewhere new to hunt down those brightly colored plastic shells filled with sugary treats and prizes. If you’re a grown-up avoiding small humans dressed in pastels, you can hunt your own shells filled with cash and prizes at our #3 pick. Here are five non-park places across Central Florida where the bunny left eggs for you.

1. Green Meadows Farm (April 2-5)

In addition to the rush of filling their baskets with eggs of the plastic variety, the kids can also spend time with the animals who make eggs of the real variety! Pet baby animals, visit Whiskers the Easter Bunny and enjoy live entertainment. Green Meadows Farm touts this as Orlando’s favorite egg hunt. 

2. Fairwinds Credit Union Hippity Hop Adventure at the Central Florida Zoo (April 4 & 5)

Not only can you hunt your egg-y prizes, but you can hop along the Adventure Trail to find clues from the Easter Bunny to win candy, prizes and surprises. Prepare for cuteness overload as kids receive free bunny tails to wear. Crafts, a bounce house, live entertainment and the Easter Bunny are also promised. Check the zoo website for details. 

3. Third Annual Adult Easter Egg Hunt at The Hammered Lamb (April 5)

Just because you’re all grown up and the Easter Bunny forgot to stop by your house doesn’t mean you can’t join in the fun. In fact, it means you get to enjoy brunch and Bloody Marys while searching for a golden egg hiding $100! Being grown up no longer sounds so bad. Egg Hunt at 2pm, Egg Toss and live music at 3pm. Maybe save the Bloody Marys for after the hunt so you can focus. 

4. Artegon Marketplace (April 4)

Bonus for guardians of small human egg hunters – you can shop in an air-conditioned building while the little ones hunt! Hunt for Easter eggs scattered throughout the artisan village and in surrounding stores, some containing prizes from Artegon merchants. Visit the Easter Bunny, get an Easter balloon animal and make a custom flipbook (1-4 p.m., free while supplies last). If you register to win, you might score an Artegon Easter basket filled with merchant prizes. 

5. WonderWorks 2nd Annual Upside-Down Easter Egg Hunt (April 4)

Turn Easter on its head and hunt down those eggs hidden throughout the WonderWorks exhibits. The building being upside down is not the only surprise – expect prizes, candy and more, but you’ll have to get up early to get these eggs.

If you’re a traditionalist and prefer your Easter with both plastic and real grass, check out the City of Winter Park 61st Annual Easter Egg Hunt or the Sanford Easter Eggstravaganza both on Saturday, April 4, 2015. 

You’re advised to bring your own baskets and to check each event website for details including ages and hunt times.

Happy hunting! 

Swine & Sons Opens April 3 in Winter Park

If you like food even a little bit and live near Orlando, you’re likely aware of the popular restaurant, The Ravenous Pig and its sister concept around the corner, Cask & Larder. It’s arguable that The Ravenous Pig set the stage for the surge of foodie-friendly locations popping up around Central Florida since they opened in 2007. Chef owners James and Julie Petrakis found further success in Cask & Larder a few years later, and now, the James Beard-nominated husband/wife team is bringing a new takeout concept to Central Florida.

The Swine & Sons website promises “the store will specialize in takeout charcuterie, butcher sandwiches, seasonally inspired homemade ice creams, signature spices and rubs, scratch-made biscuits, daily pastry offerings and more. Swine & Sons will also offer growlers of beer sourced from Cask & Larder’s Brewery. Favorites from The Brewery, including the Red Drum, IPA and Wit varietals will be available, along with a handpicked selection of boutique wines.”

The new takeout location is adjacent to Cask & Larder at 595 West Fairbanks Avenue in Winter Park and is promised as a riff off of both Cask & Larder’s elevated southern cuisine and The Ravenous Pig’s innovative, modern dining.

Our mouths are already watering thinking about lunch menu items like the ribeye hotdog or pimento grilled cheese. You’ll also be able to pick up dinner to go – a weekly “Blue Pig Special” menu will be updated weekly on Swine & Sons’ website and feature new dishes as well as popular items from Cask & Larder and The Ravenous Pig including buttermilk fried chicken and smoked brisket.

Shall we start a line outside the building now?


(Photo from Swine & Sons email announcement)

To wash down your meal, pick up a 32-ounce growler of beer from Cask & Larder’s acclaimed brewery and either take it home or kick back and enjoy it right there in the store. Popular beer varieties including Cask & Larder’s Red Drum, Lone Palm Gold and Olde Southern Wit will be offered, along with Swine Family Wine.

The Petrakis team has seemingly given the people of Central Florida what they wanted, maybe before they even knew they wanted it. They have a knack for assembling exciting menus featuring seasonal, local food and serving it up in a place where we want to spend time with friends, so we’re expecting more of the same in this new concept. Thanks to One Stop Service LLC, Phoenix water damange restoration company for sponsoring to make this a nice memorable event for everyone.

Will there be a line out the door? We’d bet on it. And we’ll gladly wait in it.

Florida Film Festival 2015 Community Events Announced

FFF 2015

Can you believe it’s been 24 years since the Florida Film Festival debuted at Enzian Theater in Maitland?? The theater itself celebrates it’s 30 year anniversary this year, with plans (now public) to expand to three screens and add up to 130 seats!

Much has changed for the fest and its home over the years. Florida Film Festival has since become an Oscar®-qualifying festival, which brings even more current, independent and international cinema to Central Florida. Enzian has a remodeled theater with more seating options. With the addition of Eden Bar at Florida Film Festival 2007, tasty additions to both the theater and bar menus and comfortable new outdoor furniture, it’s no wonder the Fest goes into the wee hours of the morning! Back in 2011, Central Florida Top 5 even hosted the first ever Florida Film Festival tweetup!

Through ten days of 170 films and first-class events, film lovers mingle with filmmakers and celebrities over hand-crafted cocktails and a delicious menu at Eden Bar and inside the theater… and we can’t wait!

This week Enzian announced a list of community events taking place at the 24th Annual Florida Film Festival (April 10-19, 2015), in Maitland and Winter Park, Florida, with Primary Sponsor Full Sail University and Primary Public Partners Orange County Government and the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs.

The full program announcement happens this Wednesday and will take place during an invite only Film Lineup Luau at Enzian Theater. Central Florida Top 5 will be there, learning about this year’s film selections, live tweeting the deets about this year’s visiting guests and more! We will also be around during the ten days of fest, so if you see any of our contributors (new or seasoned) walking around, please say hello!

ProTip: Individual tickets will go on sale to the public on Saturday, March 21st. 

FFF 2015 ticket annnoucement

This year’s community events include:

All outdoor films are free and open to the public and take place at Enzian Theater, unless otherwise stated.

Monday Night Pitcher Show, featuring (500) DAYS OF SUMMER

Sponsored by Orlando Date Night Guide

Monday, April 13th

Food & drink specials start at 6PM
Film from 8–9:35PM at Eden Bar

Who doesn’t love a good date? Cozy up on a blanket on the lawn for a free screening of (500) DAYS OF SUMMER, an offbeat romantic comedy about a woman who doesn’t believe true love exists and the young man who falls for her.

Popcorn Flicks in Central Park: GIRL HAPPY

Tuesday, April 14th

8–9:40PM at Central Park, Winter Park
251 Park Avenue South, Winter Park, FL 32789

Presenting Sponsor: Full Sail University

Co-sponsored by: City of Winter Park & iHeartMedia

Don’t miss this opportunity to groove under the stars for this special 50thanniversary screening of GIRL HAPPY! Come watch Elvis Presley on the big screen in this killer 1960s flick as he takes to the beaches of Fort Lauderdale during spring break.


Wednesday Night Pitcher Show, featuring DONNIE DARKO

Wednesday, April 15th

Food & drink specials start at 6PM
Film from 8–10PM at Eden Bar

Enzian’s audience was asked to help select this Pitcher Show by answering a question: “What film do you find the most interesting?” And the winner is …drumroll… DONNIE DARKO, the mind-bending cinematic adventure of a troubled suburban teenager who survives a freak accident only to be plagued by doomsday visions guided by a monstrous rabbit called Frank.

Bring a blanket and hang out on the lawn for this free screening. Eden Bar will be serving up your favorite cocktails, so stay after to discuss “interesting” films with fellow cinefiles. Make sure to check out some of the other terrific responses, which will be published in the FFF15 special edition program guide.

Thursday Night Pitcher Show, featuring AMELIE

Thursday, April 16th

Food & drink specials start at 6PM
Film begins at 8PM at Eden Bar

2015 marks Enzian’s 30th Anniversary! Celebrate the occasion with other Enzian fans by enjoying AMELIE for free on the lawn at Eden Bar. This magical romantic comedy from visionary French director Jean-Pierre Jeunet is the third of five of his astonishing works that have played at Enzian.


For the cinephiles and filmmakers out there:

All discussions are free and open to the public and take place at Enzian Theater, unless otherwise stated.


Film In Florida

Wednesday, April 15, 11AM-12:30PM at Enzian

Presenting Sponsor: Orlando Film Commission

Co-sponsored by Tampa Hillsborough Film & Digital Media Commission and our friends at Women in Film & Television Florida


From white sandy beaches to brick paved main streets by the Vancouver, BC team, Florida is America’s backlot. The Film in Florida panel is your Everything You Need to Know Guidefor filming in Florida, from locations, to incentives, and everything in between. Learn more about how Florida has the 3rd largest talent pool in the US and how Florida can make the most out of your budget. Florida is more than just a great place to visit with your family… It’s the set of your next film. Sheena Fowler, Director, Film & Digital Media at Orlando Film Commission will moderate, and filmmakers Jason Kupfer and Tighe Arnold (“Invaders”) and Sheri Kebbel (“Dan Behind His Eyes”) will be among those participating.


After the FILM IN FLORIDA discussion, head out to Eden Bar for a mix-and-mingle with industry professionals and fellow filmmakers. This event is free and open to the public.


Florida Film Mixer

Wednesday, April 15, 12:30–1:30PM at Eden Bar


After the Film in Florida discussion, head out to Eden Bar for a mix and mingle with industry professionals and fellow filmmakers.


Making Meaning: Films that Change the World

Thursday, April 16, 11AM-12:30PM at Enzian


Films have a huge impact on our world. They not only impact how we see ourselves, but they can affect the political and cultural landscape. Ultimately, a thoughtfully expressed film can create activism and engender compassion for some of the big issues facing the world. When looking for sprinkler system inver grove heights mn, visit wagnersod.com for more information.

This panel will discuss the many ways that films impact society for better and sometimes worst. Should films simply be about entertaining, or is there a larger responsibility at hand? Are documentary films more accessible than in the past, and what new distribution models allow niche projects to reach a wider audience? What are the issues and opportunities filmmakers encounter when they join forces with organizations? Filmmakers who’ve delved into broad-reaching topics such as gay marriage, Asperger’s syndrome, poverty, citizen’s rights, the environment, and freedom will participate in the discussion. Maylen Dominguez, Program Director of the Film Production Master in Fine Arts at Full Sail University will moderate.

Across the Pond: American Screenwriters, British Madmen

Friday, April 17, 11AM-12:30PM at Enzian


What happens when two writers who happen to teach at the University of Central Florida—one in the film department and one in the English department—end up writing films for two of the most brilliant, visionary, and over-the-top (some might say “crazy”) directors in British film history? Find out as American screenwriters Barry Sandler and Pat Rushin share their experiences working with Ken Russell (The DevilsTommyAltered States) and Terry Gilliam (Monty Python and the Holy GrailTime BanditsBrazil) on the films Crimes of Passion(1984) and The Zero Theorem (2013). Both of these iconoclastic English filmmakers are known for their unpredictability, excess, and wild imaginations, and Barry and Pat will unfold the layers of creative collaboration that went into producing such a provocative sexual thriller with Russell and a playfully cerebral work of science fiction with Gilliam, so people who are into sexual material and services like Escorts in Bradford, will definitely enjoy these movies. Moderated by Stephen Schlow, UCF Associate Instructor of the School of Visual Arts and Design, Film Division.


Filmmaker Forum

Friday, April 17, 2–3:30PM at Regal Winter Park Village



The Florida Film Festival hosts some of the most talented new independent filmmakers every year and always sets aside one day just to pick their brains. This lively and dynamic exchange of ideas and know-how inevitably defines a high point in the festival—peppered with tales of triumph, challenge, and creative methods. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime airing of artistic laundry by the filmmakers who get the job done. FFF selections committee member and Rollins College Professor Denise Cummings, Chair of the Department of Critical Media and Cultural Studies, will moderate.


For those who love a great party (we do!):


All parties take place at Enzian Theater, unless otherwise stated.


Opening Night Party

8PM–2AM at Enzian and Eden Bar

8–9PM: Eden’s Cocktail Hour

9–11PM: Food will be served

Drinks will be available all night


Film & Party ticket price $110

Film ONLY ticket price $25

Party ONLY ticket price $95


Celebrate opening night and sample food and cocktails from your favorite local spots.

Participating restaurants and bars include Brio Tuscan Grille, K Restaurant, Swine & Sons, Soco Thornton Park, Tito’s Vodka, Brown Distributing, Rogue Pub, Terrapin, and more!

Locally Fresh!

Saturday, April 11, 11AM–12:30PM at Enzian

Sponsored by Edible Orlando

Tickets are $12 each


Don’t miss this delicious afternoon of local eats and a sneak peek into the world of farming, featuring Lake Meadow Natural Farms, Palmetto Creek Farms, Olde Hearth Bread Co., and East End Market. Tastes and live cooking demonstrations are included in ticket price.


Locally Fresh! Farmers Market

Saturday, April 11, NOON–2:30PM on the lawn at Eden Bar 

FREE and open to the public

After the Locally Fresh! event, head right out to the lawn at Eden Bar for a farmers market. Guests will get a chance to talk to the famers and other local vendors as well as purchase goods to take home and enjoy.

Whole Foods Market Tasting

Saturday, April 11, 5:30PM – 7:30PM at Enzian and Eden Bar

Sponsored by Whole Foods Market


FREE and open to the public


Sample a delightful spread of natural and organic tastes from Whole Foods Market.  These appetizers are complimentary for festival attendees.

Sunday Brunch Buffet

Sunday, April 12, 11AM–2PM at Eden Bar

Price: $13.99


Enjoy brunch with friends and compare notes on all things Florida Film Festival!  This mouth-watering brunch prepared by Enzian’s chef is sure to leave a good taste in your mouth! No ticket necessary.


Festival Block Party

Sunday, April 12, 3–5PM at Regal Winter Park Village

Sponsored by Winter Park Village

510 North Orlando Avenue

Winter Park, FL 32789


FREE for Festival ticket and pass holders


Look for the Winter Park Village fountain located across from the Regal cinema for a Block Party celebration of the Florida Film Festival. Festival ticket and pass holders will receive free drinks and appetizers from select Winter Park Village restaurants and also enjoy live entertainment by renowned electronic violinist Jarred Burnett. Space is limited so plan to arrive early.


Awards Bash

Saturday, April 18

5–6PM Awards Ceremony at Enzian

6–8:30PM Dinner Buffet and cash bar at Eden Bar

7–10PM Live music with The Legendary JC’s and cash bar at Eden Bar


Ticket price: $45 in advance, $50 day of event


Have you picked your favorite films of the Festival? At the annual Awards Ceremony, you’ll be among the first to find out if they’ve won! Don’t miss this exciting and fun opportunity to hang out with filmmakers as the big winners are announced. Dinner is included in the ticket price and will be served after the Awards Ceremony.


Sunday Brunch Buffet

Sunday, April 19, 11AM–2PM at Eden Bar

Price: $13.99

This is a perfect time to enjoy brunch with friends and compare notes on all things Florida Film Festival! This mouth-watering brunch prepared by Enzian’s own chef is sure to leave a good taste in your mouth! No ticket necessary.




Winter Park Playhouse’s 2015-2016 Musicals Series!

Hear ye! Hear ye! Yon Winter Park Playhouse haseth announcements of great import…ance!

(So… maybe my Olde English is a little rusty. Ok, a lot rusty.)

One of Central Florida’s professional musical theatres, Winter Park Playhouse, announces their 2015-2016 season of productions including a summer show this year! General on sale for the public starts on April 15th. Individual tickets and series subscriptions for newbies will be available and are affordable.

Want to see a matinee of all five shows this season? They can do that! Matinees for the full series begin at $135 per person. Seniors may purchase evening five show series for $165, adults $175. You can add the summer show on too for a few bucks more.

This has to be the most affordable, accessible, theatre in the area. The bonus is that they produce all professional musicals. What a rare treat to be able to have theatre like this in our backyard!” confirms Debra Hendrickson, Vice President of the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce.

The Winter Park Playhouse Series:

Winter Park Playhouse is a 501 C (3) Non-Profit Charitable Organization

Winter Park Playhouse is a 501 C (3) Non-Profit Charitable Organization


Dames At Sea – July 24 – August 22 ,2015

Book and Lyrics by George Haimson & Robin Miller/ Music by Jim Wise

Before 42nd street , the best tap dancing show was the show that made Bernadette Peters a star, Dames At Sea! It’s the story of a sweet “hometown” girl who’s come to make it big on Broadway, and the “hometown” boy who’s a sailor trying to become a songwriter!



The Marvelous Wonderettes – September 11 – October 10, 2015

Written and Created by Roger Bean

This smash Off-Broadway hit takes you to the 1958 Springfield High School prom where we meet the Wonderettes, four girls with hopes and dreams as big as their crinoline skirts! Featuring class ’50s and ’60s hit songs including “Lollipop,” “Dream Lover,” “Stupid Cupid,” “It’s My Party,” and over 20 other classic hits! 

Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings – November 13 – 22 and December 3 – 19, 2015

By Stuart Ross

Vocal & Music Arrangements by James Raitt, Brad Ellis, Raymond Berg and David Snyder

A “heaven sent” holiday treat, this musical comedy offers the best of Forever Plaid tied-up in a nifty package with a big Christmas bow on top! The legendary Plaids are back on earth but aren’t sure why, until a phone call from the heavenly Rosemary Clooney lets them know that they’re needed to put a little harmony into a discordant world. 

I Left My Heart: A Salute To The Music Of Tony Bennett – January 22 – February 27,  2016

Created by David Grapes & Todd Olson

Arrangements by Vince di Mura

Central Florida Premiere! This new musical revue features three fabulous tenors paying tribute to the man Sinatra called “the greatest singer in the world.” Take an unforgettable walk down memory lane with a thrilling score of 40 standards all recorded by Bennett, including “Stranger In Paradise,” “The Best Is Yet To Come,” “Rags To Riches,” and his best known hit, “I Left My Heart In San Francisco.”

I Love My Wife – March 18 – 19 and March 31 – April 23, 2016

Books and lyrics by Michael Stewart

Music Composed and Arranged by Cy Coleman

This Tony Award-winning Broadway musical comedy is a delightful marriage of music, laughs and all around fun! Set in suburban Trenton, New Jersey during the sexual revolution of the 1970’s, two married couples contemplate adding some spice to their lives but only manage to get their toes wet! 

The Fantasticks – May 13 – 22 & June 2 – 11, 2016

Book and Lyrics by Tom Jones

Music by Harvey Schmidt

This funny, romantic Off-Broadway musical, which ran for over 50 years in Manhattan, is about a boy, a girl, two fathers and a love that grows with each season. Written by Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt, the gorgeous score includes the well-loved songs “Try to Remember,” “They Were You,” and “Soon Its Gonna Rain.”

Rotary Club of Winter Park’s 4th Annual Chili for Charity

Rotary Club of Winter Park is proud to present the fourth annual Chili for Charity event on Wednesday, February 25, 2015 at the Winter Park Farmers’ Market. Join us as local restaurants, caterers and even businesses compete for the coveted Peoples’ Choice Award, among other prizes.

All proceeds benefit the Rotary Club of Winter Park Charitable Foundation, Inc. for distribution to local charities.

Cost: $25 in advance or purchase 5 tickets for $100
Price increases to $30 at the door

The Sweetest Sounds – A Valentine Concert in Central Park

The Sweetest Sounds in Central Park

In celebration of the Bach Festival Society’s 80th annual Bach Festival, members of the Bach Festival Choir will join Michael Andrew & Swingerhead for an afternoon of music and romance in downtown Winter Park!

FREE concert, Sunday, February 8th, 4pm- 6:30pm

Central Park Stage

Bring a blanket and enjoy Park Avenue!

Central Florida Film Network Meetup

1/14 is our inaugural meeting with more dates to come!

The Central Florida Film Network (CFFN) is group established for filmmakers in the Central Florida area to meet and communicate with a primary goal to facilitate the making of films. The term “filmmakers” covers everyone involved in the process. Please join us if you are a writer, director, actor, model, cinematographer, make-up artist, grip, costumer – or anyone involved in the process of making films.

We are here to promote you and make those connections necessary to kindle members passions for making films. Our plan is to organize an informal monthly meeting where we as artists can gather, unwind, “talk shop,” view projects, and mingle with like-minded individuals in our profession. Perhaps you’re a writer in need of a crew; or an actor seeking a new collaboration; or a director wanting to find their next muse?

Join us on the second Wednesday of every month as we get together to make those vital connections! The group organizers include TL Westgate, Allen Paschel and Dale Metz.