Category Archives: Amway Arena

The Science of the Circus – See How It All Works!

The “Ambassadors of Laughter” from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® will make a special appearance at the Orlando Science Center to entertain, educate and engage the public. During the show, audience members will join actual Ringling Brothers clowns on stage to try their hands at some of these famous stunts, and you will have a chance to win family four-packs to see the circus.  That’s pretty cool!

Ever wonder how circus performers can perform antics including balancing on a high wire the way acrobats do?  The clowning team makes learning science fun and comical. See firsthand how concepts like balance, wind resistance, gyroscopic stability, and gravity impact tricks such as plate spinning, acrobatics and juggling.


The Ambassadors of Laughter will tickle your funny bone with lighthearted antics that offer a sneak preview of Fully Charged, the all-new 141st Edition of The Greatest Show On Earth® playing the Amway Center this January 13th-17th.  For tickets and more information, visit

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Filed under Amway Arena, Education, Fun

Knights Prevail: Gators Cursed in the Amway Yet Again

Congratulations to the home team, the UCF Knights Men’s Basketball Team took on (and overcame) the #16 ranked Florida Gators tonight.  While we’re huge Gator fans, even we can recognize a great effort when we see one.  Over 13,000 fans cheered as UCF led Florida in a 57-54 victory.

Michael Jordan's son Marcus is a leader for the Golden Knights.

The two teams met in the Florida Citrus Sports Shoot Out and had the honor of playing the first collegiate game in the new Amway Center. This is actually a second for the Gators. Back in 1988, they also had the honor of playing in the first collegiate game in the old Amway Arena.  Top 5 editor Bess Auer was a cheerleader at that game and remembers it well.  “We lost to Stanford,” she sighed. “I guess the Gators and Amway just don’t go well together.”

Perhaps not, but the Golden Knights sure do…congrats!

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Filed under Amway Arena, Citrus Bowl, Florida Gators, Sports, UCF

Top 5 Central Florida Videos Weekly Round Up

We are thinking about doing a new weekly feature, where we show the Top 5 youtube videos of events from around Central Florida, all uploaded within the past week.

It should give a great snapshot of all the different things happening. (And you can give us a shout out if you post a great video. Who knows, it might be featured on our Weekly Round Up!)

So, let’s get started with this week’s videos:

Car races:

From Attractions Magazine:

Light Up UCF:

From Disney Parks – Mickey becomes a Magic Player:

Building of Legoland:

Bonus videos–yeah, we couldn’t decide on just 5 this week!

From NBCActionNews, because this was just so darn crazy!

Singing, because we loved Spring Awakening when it was in Orlando:


Filed under Amway Arena, Bob Carr, Broadway at Bob Carr, Charity, disney, Non-profit, Only at a Theme Park, Orlando Magic, Top 5 Video Round Up, UCF

Top 5 Sporting Events in November

Orlando Magic vs. Miami Heat

November 24 at the Amway Center
King James and Company? Bring it on! If you haven’t been to the new Amway Center, then you are in for such a treat. (Literally…great food!)  And who doesn’t want to see a showdown between our Superman and the Fab 3?

Old Spice Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament

November 25-28 at Disney’s Wide World of Sports
Love college basketball? Then you’ll want to see the Old Spice Classic tournament featuring play by Notre Dame, Georgia, Boston College, Cal State, Texas A&M, and more!

Florida Tuskers vs. Omaha

November 5 and then 19 at the Citrus Bowl
Central Florida’s other professional football league (no, not the Orlando Fantasy or Predators) are gearing up for big wins against Omaha! Gooooo Tuskers!

From the Tusker website.

Florida vs. Florida State

November 27 in Tallahassee
The Top 5 is full of Gators, and while we won’t talk as much smack as in previous years, we can still get pumped up for FSU!

Rollins College Soccer

Ongoing this month at Rollins College
In case you hand’t heard, these Tars are pretty good!

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Filed under Amway Arena, November 2010, Sports, Top 5 Sporting Events

Orlando Magic Fans – Do You Know the New Rules?

Brian Feldman knows the rules… kind of.  (No, Orlando-based performance artist Brian Feldman is NOT going to impersonate a professional basketball player, although Shaquille O’Neal recently impersonated a performance artist.)

Instead, Feldman is presenting “Foul! Official Rules of the National Basketball Association 2010-2011 as Read by Brian Feldman” in order to explain the rules, straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.


Tonight, at the Orlando Magic’s season opener, Feldman will read from the NBA’s Official 2010-2011 Rule Book, all 59 pages of it, plus the 2 extra pages of illustrations.  Feldman will be reading aloud while located across from the Amway Center (originally known as the Orlando Events Center), outside, across from the Orlando Magic Team Shop presented by Adidas, in the manner of a street preacher.

Tell it to me, brother!

So, why is Orlando’s most impressive performance artist doing this? Well, in his own words: “If you’re gonna argue with the refs this season, you gotta know the rules.”

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Filed under Amway Arena, Education, Fun, Just Plain Weird, Orlando, Orlando Magic, Sports

Jack Johnson Jams “To the Sea”

Where do I start?  So, Jack Johnson came to the Amway Arena (not the new one, which is Amway Center) in Orlando to support his fifth studio release “To The Sea” and you didn’t have a ticket?  Well, I say, when a rainy, August, Central Florida day can be instantly transformed into a Hawaiian resort, you buy a ticket for that!

If I knew you well, I would even tell you that missing tonight’s show was “culturally irresponsible” and that you should rush off to either Tampa or West Palm Beach in the next couple nights and catch up with Jack.  If I had the means or the time, I would do both.

Upon entering the arena, we were greeted by All At Once staff members with our Village Green Passport encouraging us to take environmental action, meet local non-profit partners, and learn how Jack and his crew are minimizing the environmental impact of the tour  I met the people from the Simple Living Institute from right here in Central Florida.

Before we could see Jack there were some opening acts. ALO and G. Love were exceptional. ALO includes one of Jack’s musicians in Zach Gill. They played about eight songs including my favorite “Girl, I Wanna Lay You Down.”  Zach nearly jumped into the crowd during a cover of “Eye of the Tiger” inserted into the middle of another their songs.  While G. Love sits in a chair with a single spotlight, guitar and harmonica and lives up to his billing: “The Foot Stompin’ Street Side Blues of G. Love”. G. Love provided another 35 minutes of very entertaining and diverse music for a one man band. He has the humor, soul and guitar licks of John Mayer and adds in moments drawn from varying genres of music. I will be buying the music of both opening acts very soon and would recommend that you do the same.

Well, this was my first time seeing Jack. I have long wanted to see him live. We had built it up for years that we were not seeing another concert until we saw Jack.  We own almost all of his music and a surf film or two.  Jack did not disappoint!

Two hours straight through and almost thirty songs.  He played new stuff.  He played old stuff  He covered other artists and shared the spotlight with so many musicians.  The stage fluxuated from Jack alone to nearly a dozen performers playing together.  Truthfully, we were blown away at the ease with which Jack related to the crowd with many conversational give and takes from reading signs and taking requests to talking to a young kid in the front row and supplying him with protective headphones.  He even dedicated songs to certain people that he would spot in the crowd like when he started “Upside Down” he said for that kid sitting on his dad’s shoulders and gestured to them.

I had often wondered how such a mellow act would come off live in concert.  Let me tell you that it was powerful and moving!  I was emotional and blown away by how simple it was for the show to overwhelm the audience.  The stage is nearly barren.  There are no fancy sets, just musicians, instruments and a big screen backdrop.  As Jack says near the end of the show between “Do You Remember” and “Angel” both clearly written to his wife “these are songs to you, but to me they are gifts.”  After seeing Jack Johnson live tonight, his music transformed for me from songs to gifts.  Thanks, Jack!

Unofficial Set List
  • You and Your Heart
  • If I Had Eyes
  • Taylor
  • Sitting, Waiting, Wishing
  • To The Sea
  • Upside Down
  • Go On
  • Red Wine, Mistakes, Mythology
  • Bubble Toes
  • From The Clouds
  • Wasting Time
  • Breakdown
  • Banana Pancakes
  • Mudfootball
  • Turn Your Love
  • Country Road (with Paula Fuga)
  • [unknown] (with Paula Fuga)
  • Flake
  • The Joker
  • Good People
  • Inaudible Melodies
  • Staple It Together (bassist Merlo Polewski sets down the bass and channels all three Beastie Boys in a verse)
  • At or With Me
  • Encore:
  • Do You Remember
  • Angel
  • A Pirate Looks at Forty
  • Better Together (with Paula Fuga, G. Love and ALO)
I do not know what the attendance was tonight, but the arena had to be near capacity.  If you were not one of them, promise yourself that you will catch Jack at the very next chance you get.  Keep an eye out for G. Love and Zach Gill as I expect them to be household names very soon.
And as an FYI for those of you into the green scene, “To The Sea” was recorded at Johnson’s two solar-powered studios: The Mango Tree in Hawaii and the Solar Powered Plastic Plant in Los Angeles.
This review was written by Guest Blogger Extraordinaire Mike Kennedy, Central Florida resident, dad, blogger, and avid swim and beach fan. His blog can be seen at The Mike Kennedy and he can be followed on twitter at @themikekennedy.

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Filed under Amway Arena, Celebrity, concert, Fun, Guest Blogger Extraordinaire, Music

World Championship of Stuffed Sports!

The 18th Annual Celebrity Mascot Games was held this past weekend and was, as usual, a display of the best talents in the world of Stuffed Sports.

If you are like me, most sporting events are long, boring stretches of sweaty dudes trying steal a ball from each other while you wait for the mascot to run out and entertain us. The Celebrity Mascot Games is the only event in the world that eliminates that wait for you by bringing together the thirty best mascots and running them through competitions to determine which group of mascots are the fastest, the strongest, the smartest, and–well, they are mascots after all!–the best at “bending” the rules.

This year’s event featured some pretty intense American Gladiators-style events and really kicked the intensity up a notch. I know what you are thinking: We live in Orlando and therefore have the BEST mascot in sports, Stuff the Magic Dragon, so how can these games possibly be fair with Stuff on his home turf? Stuff is a very gracious host to the other mascots and doesn’t flaunt his home-field advantage over them……much! (Except for his rapelling-from-the-top-of-the-arena entrance–the crowd went CRAZY!–and using a motorcycle for some of the events, you would hardly even know it was Stuff’s house!)

Stuff the Magic Dragon

I always come away from the games with a new favorite mascot and this year was no exception. I remember my first Celebrity Mascot Games and encountering for the first time the University of Nebraska’s mascot Lil’ Red and literally losing my breath with laughter at some of the tricks he could pull. (This year he flipped upside-down and did the YMCA dance with his feet….which inspired Stuff to try the same trick….on top of a 30 foot ladder!)

Lil' Red

This year I was very impressed with some of the local mascots: Tommy Tar from Rollins College and Thunderbug from the Tampa Bay Lightning both did great jobs. Raymond from the Tampa Bay Rays was very low energy, but somehow made it work for him. Knightro the UCF Knight also made an impressive showing, and Albert and Alberta from the University of Florida were crowd favorites as usual.

Albert and Alberta

I was excited to see Globie from the Harlem Globetrotters for the first time. Fin from the Vancouver Canucks always seemed to be in the middle of the action and here’s a special nod to Harry the Hawk from the Atlanta Hawks; he walked EXACTLY like a bird, that can’t be easy to pull off for several hours in an outfit like that!


All of this craziness came together at the Amway Arena to raise some money for an outstanding charity, New Hope for Kids, a local charity that offers support to children and families who have lost a loved one and also grants wishes to kids in the Central Florida area who have life-threatening illnesses. New Hope is a great charity and 90 cents of every dollar goes toward program services.

New Hope for Kids Banner

This post was by Guest Blogger Extraordinaire Ross, Superproducer of SomaCow, the Greatest Internet Talk Show, Ever! Tune in to SomaCow on Fridays or Sundays to listen live, or relive the experience with a podcast. Ross can be followed on Twitter @Elross. 

Ross and friends...


Filed under Amway Arena, Blogger Extraordinaire, Celebrity, Charity, Rollins College, Sports, UCF