Category Archives: winter park
Rollins College along with the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce and Winter Park community members collected 16,201 lbs of food for Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida. WOW! That is over 8 tons of food!
The food drive was part of Helping Hands Across America, which was a month-long food collection drive to help reduce hunger across Central Florida. The event has been a fixture at Rollins for several years. Throughout the month, donations were collected on Rollins College campus, from Sodexo – the College’s food provider – and at the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce.
Kudos to the students, faculty, and staff, as well as the community of Winter Park for helping the food bank prepare for a never-ending busy season!
Long before Disney, Sea World, and certainly Universal Studios were a dream in someone’s head; way before I-4 or the Bank of America Building had been planned on paper, even before the Lake Eola Fountain was a wisp of an idea, Rollins College was founded, 125 years ago today!
Founded in 1885, Rollins College opened its doors for the very first classes on November 4. With just 66 students that first year, Rollins became known for its beautiful Florida landscape, including Lake Virginia, and top-rated faculty.
With just under 3,000 students today, the college is consistently ranked as #1 in the South of “America’s Best Colleges.” Rollins is celebrating 125 years with a very special line up of speakers, including Robert F. Kennedy tonight at 6 pm.
And, for those with some social media savvy, check out Jason Sadler from iwearyourshirt.com honoring Rollins today by wearing their shirt! (Yeah, we think that’s pretty cool!)
November 12-14 at Downtown Disney
We love this annual event that showcases 150 award-winning sculptors, jewelers, and painters, both local and national. It is a FREE event held at Downtown Disney West Side from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm daily. (And, check out all the great dining you can enjoy at lunch or dinner!)
Add in the House of Blues special Folk Art Festival, featuring over 40 folk artists and musicians, and then the Central Florida Chalk Association decorating over 6,000 square feet of sidewalks, and this is a pretty cool weekend to see!
November 3-10 at Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum
Featuring Bernie Martin, this artist is famous for his look of a 19th Century impressionist. Often featuring ballerinas, we’re excited to see his work in person! Martin’s work has won top awards in numerous festivals, including the Coconut Grove and Maitland Art Festivals, and has sold internationally through Sotheby’s and Mayer’s.
And, if you have yet to visit Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum, you are in for a real treat. Currently situated along Winter Park’s famed Park Avenue, the home was once located a long block or two east and sat on the banks of Lake Osceola and was slated for demolition. Alarmed residents rallied together and raised $ to have the historic home moved to its current home. Casa Feliz, or “Happy House” in Spanish, was designed by noted architect James Gamble Rogers II and built in 1932. It is definitely worth a visit!
November 20-21 at the Orange County Regional History Center
You’ve heard about the legendary Florida Highwaymen that painted the scenes of Florida, right? Well, now’s your chance to meet some of the original painters at the Orange County Regional History Center. With a special exhibit entitled “Against All Odds: The Art of the Highwayman,” you can come and discover what makes this artwork so valuable and highly collectible.
The history of the Highwaymen dates back to the 1950s and 60s when a group of self-taught painters from Fort Pierce, Florida banded together to produce over 200,000 pieces of art depicting Florida’s landscapes. The paintings were sold out of cars for a relatively cheap price; however, when rediscovered in the 90s, the values sky-rocketed.
Schedule of events:
- November 20: Meet Mary Ann Carroll, James Gibson, and Issac Knight
- November 21: Meet Curtis Arnett, Robert Lewis Jr., and Roy McLendon
November 13-December 24 at Gallery on First in Historic Sanford
We love any excuse to go visit Historic Sanford, and this gives us the right reason. “Season’s Celebration,” held at Gallery on First, will feature original artwork by studio artists Stewart Jones, Cindy Sturla, Stan Surman, Robert Holewinski, Sharon Rae Hyder, and Lori Anne Harris. Lots of great work to see!
Curious about Sanford itself? It used to be a thriving port town, one of the biggest and most important in Central Florida. In fact, it was almost chosen as the home for Rollins College before a sudden change of heart placed the school in Winter Park. Situated on the St. John’s River, Sanford features bricklined streets, towering oaks, elegant store-fronts and large, nineteenth-century Victorian homes. The downtown, which once featured feed stores and dry good sellers, now showcases antique shops, restaurants and art galleries. And with the marina, Central Florida Zoo, and Wayne Densch Performing Arts Center, Sanford is a great pace to visit!
November 5 – January 5 at Maitland Art Center
Known for whimsical sculptures, Rob Reedy has recently returned to mixed media and painting. We can’t wait to see his whimsy in person… I mean, check out the name of the exhibit already!
From the artist’s perspective: “Growing up in rural Mississippi was challenging. Traditions, such as storytelling, family, and faith had a tremendous affect in shaping my work, as well as my values. I see it as a refreshing force in a world that can sometimes be cold, static, and impersonal. My philosophy is an interesting balance between intellect and superstition, science and magic, New York and Mississippi….a sort of ‘Doo Da Dada.’ “
And, if you have never visited the Maitland Art Center, it is such a delightfully artsy place! Founded as founded as an art colony in 1937 by visionary American artist and architect André Smith, it continues today as a center of art, education, and excellence. And, the building itself is a work of art, adorned with carvings, statues, and beads. Truly beautiful!
On Thursday, October 28, the Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens will be celebrating it’s namesake’s birth nation by celebrating the traditional day of Czech Independence. (FYI: museum founder, Albin Polasek, was born and raised in the province of Moravia, in what is now the Czech Republic.)
To celebrate, the museum is offering free admission from 10 am to 4 pm, and if you have never visited before, it is well worth the trip to Winter Park!
Saturday evening culminated Park Avenue’s Fashion Week with a tent show, which was quite an event. I attended with several friends, including Katie Murray, major fashionista, Carol Kostick, Rollins alumna, Suzanne Lemons, who sits on the City of Winter Park’s Park and Recreation Board, and Susan Leonard of Tommy’s Island and Shore Brand clothing.
Susan, who has been in the fashion industry for years and has attended a zillion fashion shows across the nation, was complimentary of how professionally the fashion show was presented. We had fun watching the models strut across the catwalk and people watching in the crowd. Mayor Ken Bradley was seated on the front row opposite title sponsor Harriett Lake. (Ms. Lake leads quite the social life… I had just seen her the night before at the Orlando Ballet. I hope I have such good fortune when I am 88 years old!)
The tent was packed; in fact, we had trouble finding seats despite paying $125 for VIP seating! However, the models were young and beautiful and the fashions were fun. The music was loud and rocking and the crowd seemed to love the evening. They especially appreciated the Go Red for Women heart survivors, which was a nice tie in. Enjoy this short video from the event:
Okay, so many Orlando residents have long known about Blanch Torres and her daughter Bianca, two fabu hairdressers in the area. But now, they’ve opened a full-service salon and day spa right on the corner of Park Avenue and Morse in Winter Park. So, the Top 5 attended a small VIP party where Bella Ella was treating the very deserving teachers of Park Maitland School.
Teachers were treated to facials, paraffin hand treatments, hair and make up makeovers, hair styling, even fashionable cuts. Bella Ella also served food and drinks, including black beans and rice provided by Latin Bistro Cuban Cafe. Yum!
It’s a beautiful place with lots of great service, so be sure to check them out if you’re on the hunt for a new salon!
I was so excited to stop by the Kick Off Party for Park Avenue Fashion Week at Tuni on Park Avenue earlier tonight. As a VIP ticket holder, I received a special invite to stop by and pick up a “swag bag.” Hmmm…they peaked my curiosity. Just what would a swag bag from PAFW include?
Well, the build-up was fun enough, as Tuni had a special “photo wall” prepared for VIPs to have their picture taken, and they had live mannequins modeling in the windows (fun!) as well as champagne and a DJ inside the boutique.
So, I flashed my VIP ticket and was shown past the DJ to the back where the “check in” table was located. There I received my silver swag…
And on my way out, I was suddenly fodder for the paparazzi!
And so, just what was inside the bag???
- Program of Events for Park Avenue Fashion Week
- Gift certificate from La Belle Furs for a free 100% cashmere scarf
- Chocolate High Heel (edible – yum!)
- Gift certificate from Syngery for $20 off any UGG purchase
- Fall edition of Brite Magazine
- A catalog of Van Gogh Vodka Imports
- A beaded/ribbon necklace and hope earrings from Tuni
- Two complimentary tickets to a Festival of Orchestra performance
- A tie-dye tank top and peace symbol necklace from Sultre
- A bottle of Aveda Rosemary Mint Hand and Body Wash from Gary Lambert Salon
- Gift card for $25 off any hair service over $50 for four visits from Gary Lambert Salon
- Eye glass cleaner and gift certificate for $100 off any pair of glasses from e|o Eyes & Optics
- Gift certificate for $25 to Current (if you spend $125)
- Gift certificate for $25 to Coralia Leets Jewelry Boutique
- American Heart Association “Go Red” red dress pin
- One complimentary admission to a Rollins College sporting event
- A gift certificate for $5 off any dinner at Tolla’s
- A card for a complimentary drink at Fleming’s
- Sample of Oribe shampoo and conditioner and a gift certificate for $10 to Kendall & Kendall Hair Color Studio
- Sample of Biomega shampoo and conditioner from Marvaldi Hair and Make Up Studio
- A gift certificate for $25 to Eileen Fisher (if you spend $50)
- A coupon to enter to win $500 towards an outfit from Thread
- A key from Eileen Fisher and Synergy to possibly win either $100 gift certificate or a pair of UGG Classic Boots
- A gift certificate for $100 to Tuni (if you spend $200 or more)
Not bad for some free swag, eh?
I really love the chocolate heel…I am assuming it is from PeterBrooke, and I like the jewelry from Tuni. The tie-dye tank totally rocks, too! As for the gift certificates, I’m going to have to spend a lot of money to be able to use them, and most have a fairly soon expiration date, so I may or may not get much use out of them.
Overall, though, PAFW is off to a fun start!
The Top 5 was honored to join several fellow “lady bloggers” last night at The Wine Room on Park Avenue in Winter Park. Organized by Kim Taylor of The Pulse of Central Florida, I got to see Colleen Burns of Yelp Orlando and Lady Ballers, Jeanette of J’s Everyday Fashion (who dished on her celebrity interview with Giuliana Rancic), Katy Widrick of Growing Bolder and her own blog, Jackie of Momjovi, and then Katy of The Balanced Foodie. On the way out, I even ran into Holly Shakespeare!
So, our gathering was not the only event happening at The Wine Room. Roll out the red carpet, spin out the DJ, and turn on the spotlights… a fashion show was making its way right through the middle of the establishment! Fashions were provided by Liz’s Fashion Experience, and so we got to watch slinky long-legged models in high heels and faux fur as they strutted the “catwalk” to the front. And, it was all raising money for the Make A Wish foundation… so we loved it!
So, the night was a dazzling time, all the way around! Looking forward to the next gathering of the Lady Bloggers!
Billy is originally from Pittsburgh, but attended my high school when his family moved to Florida. As a classmate at Winter Park High School, I don’t pretend to have known Billy well at all–who knows if he would even remember my name! Just my graduating class had over 900 students after all!–but I do claim to remember that he was a funny guy even back then. One year for a talent show, he donned a brown paper bag over his head to debut as the “Unknown Comic” and had the crowd in stitches! I find it so refreshing that somebody who actually knew what he wanted to do as a career (starting back in high school) had the gumption and guts to persevere until he made it. Way to go, Billy!
Mike and Molly starts September 20 on CBS. Until then, catch this interview with Craig Ferguson on the Late, Late Show. Billy confessed this was his very first talk show and that he was nervous! (I must confess, I had never seen the Craig Ferguson Show as I am always in bed by then! But, the host was gracious and very funny… me likes the Scotsman!) And, we think Billy did an absolutely great job and are proud to claim him as a local boy done good!
Warning: Rated PG for langauge.