Category Archives: Rollins College

You Only Live Once… right?

If I mention a salon and day spa on posh Park Avenue in Winter Park, are you suddenly picturing $$$$$$$$$?

Well, never fear because enter YOLO Salon and Spa, and you will suddenly feel transported back in time to an earlier version of Park Ave., when unique storefronts and boutiques reigned, rather than the chain-owned stores of today. To a time when a shopper would discover a rare find, and then have to come back to that store again and again because it was the only place it could be found. And a time when most people who live in and around Winter Park could still afford to shop there!

YOLO Salon and Day Spa

That’s because YOLO, which stands for You Only Live Once, is a store packed with funky fun finds, traditional lime green and pink t-shirts customized with palm trees, and items reminiscent of Austin’s hippie feel. In fact, when I first walked in I thought it was just a store and was completely surprised to see they are also a full service salon–hair, pedicures, facials, bikini waxes, the whole nine yards!

Not surprisingly they have garnered fame among the Rollins College crowd, and most appropriately, they keep their college-aged customers (and budgets) in mind. I got a bikini wax ($35) and customized facial ($85 but I utilized their $20 discount for being a new customer), so it was nowhere near what today’s Park Ave. prices have risen to.

The day of my appointment, I arrived at YOLO a bit early to hunt through their chic boutique and was offered a drink from a makeshift tiki bar set up in the middle of the establishment. (Too cool!) There were also some comfy chairs and couches to plop down in to wait if I so chose.

Have an iced tea while you relax.

Kari, my technician, soon arrived and escorted me back. In a treatment room, she put me at ease before setting about to a painless (well, almost) waxing and then a luxurious facial. She mixed a custom mask for me based on my skin type (and she nailed it perfectly!) before massaging away my tension as well as a horrible neck crick while it dried.

And do you know what I loved the best? Although the front of the salon was packed with a variety of different lines of soaps, lotions, etc., she didn’t seem predetermined to sell me something after the facial. (You know what I am talking about! Those salons where the technicians recommend some $90 facial wash and $80 lotion, making the whole facial seem like some big sales job!)

Great selection

So, while some exotic, high-priced salons must be saved for only truly special occasions, like birthdays or Mother’s Day, YOLO Salon and Spa seems like the type of place I would want to be a regular. A place where everybody knows my name when I walk in…a place to just hang with the girls. And, for those regulars, they have a membership program for even bigger savings! During the summer months, YOLO is running all sorts of fun specials, like $30 Tuesdays, so be sure to pop in and see what they’ve got going on. (And don’t think that the better price means skimping on the service…I would put their facial up with the best in town!)

So, here’s to only living once and pretending to be a lady of leisure while I’m doing that living! And thanks to YOLO’s great prices I can afford to do that… well, at least some of the time!

1 Comment

Filed under Fashion, Fun, General Info, Just for Me, Rollins College, winter park

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

Do you remember your prom night?

Do you remember going to prom?  Memories of my senior prom at Winter Park High School blend together lots of satin dresses, high heels, and lots of eighties big hair!  Now, imagine if you had no prom to remember…not because your school didn’t have one, but rather you couldn’t afford to go.  Unfortunately many Central Florida families find themselves in this situation this year due to the poor economy, but students at Rollins College are working to help change that.

Two Rollins sororities— Sigma Gamma Rho (Rollins’ only historically black sorority) and Alpha Omicron Pi— have teamed up with Jones High School to provide free prom dresses for female students attending Jones’ prom on April 24.

The Rollins students collected more than 60 dresses during the last semester and then donated these dresses and accessories to Jones High School’s Tiger Den and Chelsea’s Boutique.

And, the girls did not just drop the dresses off, but instead stayed at Jones High School’s Tiger Den enhancing the shopping experience with music, food and decorations and assisting with distributing the dresses. They also conducted a chance drawing for a limousine ride to prom!

The “Top 5” salutes these two sororities for giving back to the Orlando commnity…we are sure they helped to make prom night a reality for many girls!

"Shopping" at the Tiger Den.

The objective of the Tiger Den is to provide students a place to “shop” for items they normally couldn’t buy because of their financial situation. All items are provided at no cost to the students, who are able to shop privately without any distractions.

1 Comment

Filed under Charity, Fashion, Resident done good, Rollins College

Top 3 and Sweet 16 – Home Teams Rock!

Orlando supports its Orlando Magic in a BIG TIME way (and we should) but we often forget about our collegiate home teams: UCF and Rollins College

Did you know UCF is the country third largest university? Bigger than UF, FSU, and USF. Wow! And if you haven’t visited the campus lately…it’s truly a cool college place. (I attended the Lady Gaga concert at the new UCF Arena… it’s awesome!) Let’s just say the school has come a loooong way since 1963! 

Ranked 3rd in the Nation in 2010


And, while their football and basketball teams have yet to hit the big time (Men’s Basketball Coach Kirk Speraw was just fired this past week despite having Michael Jordan’s son on the roster), the cheerleading squad has consistently been ranked one of the top squads in the nation. (Well, this is what I judge a college’s success on, you know!) 

2010 marks the fourth year in a row, the Knights have finished in the Top 3, this year behind Kentucky and Alabama, but finishing ahead of LSU and Ohio State. So, while many Orlandoans know very little about UCF’s successes, rest assured that ‘technology school out east of here’ is beginning to claim its rightful place as a major college to be reckoned with. 

Now on to Orlando’s other home team: The Rollins College Tars. (Yep, that beautiful little school on the end of Park Avenue in Winter Park.) I may be a bit biased as I coached the Rollins Cheerleaders for a decade, but this hometeam is one worth rooting for. First of all, for the fifth year in a row, Rollins College was ranked #1 southern college by US News & World Report. And while it isn’t nearly the size of UCF (Rollins boasts around 2,600 students), it does have a very impressive set of athletic teams.  Soccer, tennis, golf, baseball, and crew are always in the running for conference titles and national rankings.  

In particular, this year’s Men’s Basketball Team (27-6) made it to the Sweet 16, where it lost to Valdosta State on Tuesday, March 16.  How many Orlandoans even knew Rollins had a basketball team or knew they were any good? Well, now you do!  And probably one of the most vital things to note is Rollins athletes are students first. They come to school for an education, not to advance to the professional athletic ranks.  And, to me that is what college sports should be about most; kids playing because they love the sport, not because they might eventually get a paycheck from it.  

And, while UCF was founded in 1963, Rollins was one the earliest Florida schools, forming in 1895! (Some of its early athletes even went to the early Modern Olympic Games… Rex Beah won a silver medal in water polo in 1904!)  So, on February 5, Rollins held a campus-wide event “Rally Rollins” in celebration of 125 years of athletic heritage and school spirit. The inaugural event featured a ceremony honoring Class of 2010 athletes, followed by much-anticipated performances by comedians Jeff Heffron  and Dean EdwardsClick here for more info on upcoming events celebrating Rollins’ 125th anniversary

The Rollins Rally!Rollins students with their Tar mascot.


Rollins students with their Tar mascot.

So, now that you know…perhaps put both UCF and Rollins on your radar to see some quality sporting events!

Leave a comment

Filed under concert, Rollins College, Sports, UCF, Uniquely Florida, winter park