OCALAâ€™S GUIDE TO ENTERTAINMENT, NIGHTLIFE & FAMILY FUN
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CONTENTS // AUG 2020 6 // TO P 10 T H IN GS TO DO IN T H E 3 52 A handy guide to get you going and keep you busy this month.
WATCH 8 // T H E MUS IC MA N
Noah Hunton, a 21-year-old Forest High School grad, has been performing and writing music for as long as he can remember.
10 // OUT O F T H E DA RK
The Reilly Arts Center is bringing life to the Marion Theatre starting this month through film, live performances, music, art and more.
12 // S H OW US YOUR S ELFIE
Reader selfies from around town and at home.
13 // MOVIES UN DER T H E STA RS
Pg. 22 photo courtesy of Visit Panama City Beach; Pg. 8 photo courtesy of Noah Hunton; Pg. 16 photo courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort
The words backyard movie theater may sound impressive, but don’t let it scare you off. It’s easier than you think to create a backyard oasis.
14 // T H E S H OW MUST G O O N
Ocala Civic Theatre’s Education Department is bringing students online for another incredible virtual production.
EXPLORE 16 // RE A DY TO RO LL
National Roller Coaster Day is right around the corner. What better way to celebrate than by checking out some new and to-come coasters in the Central Florida area?
18 // P ETS IN PUBLIC
Safely exploring the outdoors and pet-friendly places with your pooch.
19 // ST REETS W IT H STO RIES
Rather than purchasing a guidebook on your next Florida getaway, download the Florida Stories app for local stories from local voices.
20 // T H E OUT DO O R LIFE
22 // D O G - F RI E N D LY D EST IN AT IO N S
Ready for vacation, but don’t want to leave your best friend at home alone? Take Fido with you on your next getaway to one of these pet-centric locales.
Tamoka State Park, in Ormond Beach, offers a unique outdoor experience that’s perfect for a little nature therapy.
CRAVE 26 // G O O E Y G O O DN ESS
With National S’mores Day just around the, we thought it was high time to dedicate a few pages to these ooey, gooey, sweet creations.
29 // PA RT Y P LE AS ERS
Hosting a tailgate party this fall? Score big points with these crowd-friendly recipes.
THINGS TO DO IN THE 352 : A HANDY GUIDE TO GET YOU GOING AND KEEP YOU BUSY THIS MONTH.
LIL’ LEAF SERIES // AUGUST 5 & 7
THE ART OF PURPOSE // AUGUST 7-29
The opening reception for The Art of Purpose, a Marion Cultural Alliance applied arts juried exhibit, will take place Friday, August 7 from 5-6pm. The exhibit, which is sponsored by Angie Lewis State Farm and will run from August 7-29, will focus on artists who create original items with both function and aesthetics in mind. It’s about integrating design and decoration into everyday, practical objects in order to make them aesthetically pleasing. Many mediums will be accepted, including furniture making, jewelry, graphic art, photography, interior design, metalwork, woodworking and more. The exhibit will be held at the gallery at The Brick City Center for the Arts in downtown Ocala. mcaocala.org
“A Bug’s Life,” presented by Amanda Merek from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, will take place on August 5 from 10am-12pm at Sholom Park. “Roaming Reptiles” will take place Friday, August 7 at 10am. Maxine Hunter from the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences will present the series. Both events will take place at the pavilion and are recommended for kids ages 4-10 and their parents. In order to adhere to social distancing guidelines, advanced registration is required and will be limited. sholompark.org/lil-leaf
FRIDAY FOODIE FEST // THIRD FRIDAY OF EVERY MONTH
The third Friday of every month is Foodie Fest along the banks of Lake Lillian in Belleview. This once-a-month event is focused on food, entertainment and family. Past food trucks have included Papa Pineapple’s, Kona Ice, Cora’s Kitchen, BJ’s Fresh Express, PawPaws Kitchen and Catering, Felix Diaz and more. The event will take place from 5-9pm and is free to the public. Food from the trucks or nearby businesses will be available for purchase. belleviewfl.org
MASKS AND MAKERS // MID-AUGUST THROUGH SEPTEMBER The College of Central Florida’s Webber Center will feature the Masks and Makers exhibit starting in mid-August and running through September. The exhibit will showcase artists who have created a variety of different face coverings since the COVID-19 pandemic began. The exhibit will include a display of fabric masks, 3-D printed masks, shields, guards, design patterns, DIY face coverings and more. Photos and videos may be incorporated with the items. cf.edu/community/arts
SKATE AT THE CADE—PAJAMA THEME // AUGUST 13
COUCH SESSIONS // AUGUST 7
Sip, sit and support Ocala’s talented original artists and musicians in a unique experience-based format at the Magnolia Art Xchange where the audience gets to learn about the artistic process through a series of audience-led questions. This month’s featured guests are musician Hannah Mateos and artist EJ Nieves. Watch as artists create live art and the musician performs. The event takes place on August 7 from 7-10pm. facebook.com/couchsessionsocala
ANIMAL TRACKING & TRACK IDENTIFICATION // AUGUST 14
Enjoy an evening of skating at the synthetic ice-skating rink at the Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention in Gainesville. Advance registration is required, and skate sessions will be strictly followed. There will be four, 30-minute sessions with the first taking place at 5:15pm. Skates are included in the $5 admission cost, and participants (ages 5 and up) are asked to arrive 15 minutes prior to their skate time to sign a waiver and grab their skates. There will also be several sock skating sessions available. Themed outfits are encouraged but optional. cademuseum.org
Fort King National Historic Landmark and Visitor Center and Ocala Recreation and Parks invite kids to learn to identify what tracks belong to what animals at this interactive outdoor program. Participants will get to track a park ranger through the woods using only their senses and cast their own animal track to take home. This program is for kids ages 6 through 16 and costs $15 per participant. To register, visit ocalafl.org/recpark or call (352) 368-5533.
FARMERS MARKETS // ONGOING Score locally grown food at these markets.
OCALA DOWNTOWN MARKET 310 SE 3rd Street, Ocala // (352) 629-7651 // ocaladowntownmarket.com The Ocala Downtown Market is open Saturdays, rain or shine, from 9am to 2pm at the open-air, covered pavilion at the corner of SE 3rd Street and SE 3rd Avenue in downtown Ocala.
CIRCLE SQUARE COMMONS FARMERS MARKET 8405 SW 80th Street, Ocala // (352) 854-9488 // circlesquarecommonsfarmersmarket.com Held every Thursday from 9am-1pm (if weather allows), the Circle Square Commons Farmers Market offers a fresh selection of seasonal produce from local farmers, plus tasty baked goods, seafood, hand-made products, plants and more.
VIBRANIUM COMIC FEST // AUGUST 22
If you’re into comics, then the Paddock Mall is the place to be on August 22 from 11am-3pm. Vendors and collectors will be on hand to share and sell their goods, from comic books and toys to anime items. Costumes are encouraged but not required, and no full face masks relating to costumes will be allowed. To keep guests and vendors safe, the mall will provide temperature checks and masks will be encouraged. Vendors will be socially distanced, and hand sanitizer will also be on hand. This event is free and open to the public. Find this event on Facebook.
FRIDAY MARKET 601 SE 25th Avenue, Ocala // (352) 438-2360 // marioncountyfl.org Conveniently located at the McPherson Complex field, this market includes baked goodies, fresh seafood and produce, honey, gluten-free snacks and more. The market is open every Friday from 9am-2:30pm.
BROWNWOOD FARMERS MARKET 2726 Brownwood Blvd., Wildwood // (352) 750-5411 // thevillagesentertainment.com More than 70 vendors are usually on hand with fresh fruit and vegetables and kitchen-related craft items. The market is held every Saturday from 9am-1pm May through October.
RUN FOR THE TURTLES // NOW THROUGH SEPTEMBER 10 This virtual 5K or 1-mile fun run is all about protecting and studying the world’s sea turtles. Mote Marine Laboratory’s 34th annual run is going from its home in Siesta Beach to a street near you with this year’s virtual option. The race can be completed any time between now and September 10, anywhere on Earth. Registration is $35 for each adult and $25 for each child age 13 and under and includes a race T-shirt. Registration closes at 12am the morning of September 10. Your registration supports Mote’s Sea Turtle Conservation & Research Program, which monitors, studies and protects sea turtles along 35 miles of southwest Florida nesting beaches. During the run, Mote will keep in touch with runners via Facebook and Instagram (@MoteMarineLab). Share your photos and your actions to support sea turtles. Tag #RunfortheTurtles2020 and watch for special contests for event participants, including best team theme. mote.org AUG ‘20
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
The Music Man Noah Hunton, a 21-year-old Forest High School grad, has a lot going for him at the moment. He’s engaged to the love of his life, Ashley Hussar, he has several gigs booked and he will be filming his first music video, his version of the hit “Don’t Touch My Truck,” this fall. // B Y K A R I N FA B R Y- C U S H E N B E R Y
Photo courtesy of Noah Hunton
oah has been performing and writing music for as long as he can remember. “I started young,” he says. “In elementary school I started performing at family gatherings.” Over the years though, Noah’s talent attracted the attention of others, and he went from playing family gatherings to restaurants and night clubs, festivals and more. WHETHER YOU’RE INTO “I’ve always been outgoing,” he says. “I’ve BASEBALL, WANT TO BE never been shy when A DOCTOR OR WANT TO someone asked me to sing. Sure, I get the jitters PERFORM MUSIC, YOU sometimes, though. songs to write because CAN’T GIVE UP ON YOUR Especially if I am opening I knew what I wanted for another performer.” to say to her in song DREAM. YOU HAVE TO JUST And Noah has opened form. Anyone who is in a KEEP PUSHING YOURSELF for several big names, relationship and has had including Josh Turner, that a-ha moment will FORWARD. Craig Campbell, Hinder understand. One of the and Brandon Heath, a Grammy-award winning lines in the song is ‘How could a girl like you fall Christian music artist. Locally though, you may for a country boy like me?’” have seen him at the Hilton, Blue Highway Pizzeria, Having grown up mostly in Ocala, Noah Gator Joe’s or The Crazy Cucumber, among others. admits this is where his roots are. And he loves Noah performs a mixture of cover songs and the close-knit community feel of Ocala. As an his own music, adding that when he writes an aspiring country music star, though, his dream original song, he doesn’t just jot down lyrics or is to make it to Nashville. He currently has write words that rhyme. three covers on the major music platforms, “If I write a song, it’s meaningful to me,” he including Amazon Music, Pandora and Spotify, says. “I write about things I’ve experienced that and he is planning on releasing two original other people can relate to. I love to see people’s songs in the fall. expressions when they hear one of my songs. I When talking about the influences, musical and can see that they relate.” otherwise, that drive his music, Noah is quick to Noah says one of his easiest songs to write name his fiancée, Ashley and artist Kane Brown. was “Meant To Be.” “I give Ashley props for not kicking me “I wrote this song for my fiancée about a year out with the non-stop traveling and shows ago, and it was honestly just one of the easiest and for helping me write my songs,” he says.
“And listening to Kane Brown pushed me into exploring different genres within country music, and my writing style is similar to his.” And even though he’s a self-proclaimed country boy, Noah’s musical tastes are across the board. He performs a variety of music live, from his country staple to Christian and pop. One of his favorite artists to cover? Bob Seger. When Noah’s not rehearsing or performing, he’s just like any other 21 year old. He enjoys hanging out with friends, especially fishing on the lake and hanging out in the woods. He’s also into customizing and building trucks. He’s just a normal guy doing his thing—and that’s what he encourages others to do as well. “Be true to who you are.” That’s Noah’s advice to youngsters with big dreams. “Whether you’re into baseball, want to be a doctor or want to perform music, you can’t give up on your dream. You have to just keep pushing yourself forward.” Noah Hunton Music // noah-hunton.com // Find him on Facebook and Instagram
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WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
Out Of The Dark The Reilly Arts Center is bringing life to the Marion Theatre starting this month through film, live performances, music, art and more. // B Y M E L I S S A P E T E R S O N
he historic Marion Theatre has been quiet since shutting its doors earlier this year thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. And then with the former operators retiring, the Ocala City Council approved a one-year lease in early July for the Reilly Arts Center to operate the Marion Theatre for mixed-use programming. How did this merging of two great venues come about? Executive Director of the Reilly Pamela Calero Wardell explains. “About two and a half years ago we went through a process of looking at the Marion and imagining successful and creative ways that it could be operated and utilized as a continued attractor for downtown,” she says. “Ultimately, at the time, we decided to pursue a broader expansion on our campus at the Reilly Arts Center. Even though we had moved on from the Marion, we always felt passionate about the space. When we saw that it had been dark for the past four months, we dusted off our ‘Marion Theatre Plan’ and presented it to the city as an option to keep the space open.” That plan includes showing a diverse array of film genres, including classic, independent and foreign films, award-winning documentaries, educational programs and recently released Hollywood features. Beyond film, the calendar will include small musical performances with regional rock, jazz, blues and classical artists, small theater ensemble performances, comedy shows, lectures and special event rentals. “Right off the bat we plan to offer an eclectic and rotating schedule of films and a unique live event mixed in every once in a while,” says Pamela. “From a film perspective, we are moving away from first-run films. In our first month, we plan on showing more than 20 diverse films, from family, to foreign, to classic and beyond. That simply wouldn’t be possible with the long-play contractual obligations of first-run films. Within that eclectic selection of films, we are developing several series of
have a temporary home to keep our creative films that our audiences will begin to become juices flowing and keep our mission and familiar with. For example, our “cocktail and connection with the community alive while we classics” nights will pair a cocktail hour with renovate the Reilly,” Pamela says. “Ultimately themed drinks and a classic film.” this is a win all around.” The staff at the Reilly hopes to be a With so much on phenomenal the horizon for the downtown partner Reilly, it’s impossible and offer much BEYOND FILM, THE to overlook how these more than just a changes will impact theatrical experience. CALENDAR WILL INCLUDE our community as They’re anxious to SMALL MUSICAL a whole. bring a truly exciting “Our hope is for and adventurous PERFORMANCES WITH there to be a diverse offering of film and REGIONAL ROCK, JAZZ, portfolio of arts and live experiences entertainment options to this downtown BLUES AND CLASSICAL in Ocala on any given historic space. ARTISTS, SMALL THEATER night,” says Pamela. “We see it as a “Whether it’s at the great responsibility ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCES, Reilly, Appleton, Civic and distinct honor to COMEDY SHOWS, LECTURES Theater or The Marion, be the torchbearer we want visitors to for one of Ocala’s AND SPECIAL EVENT Ocala to be truly greatest landmarks,” RENTALS. impressed and those Pamela says. “It’s who are from here tragic to see a space proud with all that this community has to offer. like this go dark when there is so much magic “On a personal note, I was born and raised that is possible inside. The importance is what this theatre means to Ocala and the memories in Ocala. It is an incredibly deep joy for me to be able to have the opportunity to work with that it provides to our community. We want a spectacular team and other community to see the Marion Theatre thrive today just as members to forward arts and entertainment much as it did when it opened in 1941.” in Ocala,” Pamela says. “The Reilly Arts In addition to the lease of the Marion Center has been a dream realized for us, and Theatre, the Reilly Arts Center announced in the possibilities that the Reilly’s expansion June that they will soon begin construction of project hold and the opportunity to continue their $4 million expansion project and expect the work at the Marion Theatre fills me with that work will be completed by summer 2021. The Reilly’s management of the Marion Theatre so much pride for our community.” will allow Reilly staff to continue bringing arts The Marion Theatre will reopen operating and live entertainment experiences to Ocala under CDC guidelines and require social even while construction on the new expansion distancing as well as the use of masks/ is underway. face coverings. Visit mariontheatre.org for “Our plan [for the Marion Theatre] gives a schedule of events. Stay up to date on the the community the benefit of the space being renovations and happenings at the Reilly Arts activated, city administration gets to see if a different model works in the theatre and we will Center at reillyartscenter.com.
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SHOW US YOUR
Out and about around the 352? Send us your selfie shots from any live entertainment or local events and you just might find yourself in our next issue.
Tallulah, sunning @ Vila
Bentley, swimming @ home
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Maverick, swimming @ Bellaire Causeway
Max, celebrating the Fourth
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MOVIES UNDER THE STARS The words backyard movie theater may sound impressive, but don’t let it scare you off. It’s easier than you think to create a backyard oasis, complete with family movie nights. All you need is a little ingenuity and a couple hundred dollars. // B Y K A R I N FA B R Y- C U S H E N B E R Y
Understandably, the most important element here is the projector. You’d be surprised how powerful some of the tiniest projectors are. An Amazon Choice is the GooDee 2020 Upgrade Video Projector. The projector is compatible with just about every device, including laptops, Firesticks, PS4, Xbox, DVD players, USB Stick, media players and much more, and it comes with two USB/HDMI inputs. The system comes with an internal hi-fi stereo, but you may want to invest a little bit in wireless speakers as well if you’re all about sound quality. The screen display size can go up to 230 inches and features an aspect ratio of 16:9/4:3. The system will run you $209 and is perfect for movies, presentations, gaming and more. Also check out an Amazon Best Seller, the Vankyo Leisure 3 mini projector with a 170inch display for $119. Because of technological advances, the projectors have become sharper and quieter in recent years.
Although a plain white bedsheet will work just fine, you may want to spring for a projector screen. From the gigantic inflatable screens (they range from the $200-$300 range for 15- to 20-foot screens) to the amazingly affordable foldable/portable/anti-crease screens, the choices are varied. There are also retractable indoor/outdoor screens for a more permanent setup. The mountable screens can be secured to hooks on the side of your home or between two weather-proof poles. There are also projector/screen bundles available online.
SEATING & SNACKS
WHAT TO WATCH Reader’s Digest put together a list of their Best Backyard Movies. Here’s a few of our favorites from the list. • Back to the Future • Big • The LEGO Movie • The Sandlot • Finding Nemo
Sources: Amazon.com, rd.com
If you don’t have yard space, you could always set up shop in the driveway. If you have a porch or deck area, that’s a great spot to spread out some lawn chairs and blankets for comfort. Add in some tiki lights and citronella
candles to control the unwanted critters. Keep the snacks simple. Have a cooler handy with cold drinks for the kids and adults. Mix up some homemade trail mix with your favorite snacks by tossing together various chips, popcorn and nuts. Each person can mix up their own bowl prior to the show. Stock up on movie theater candy from the dollar stores for the special occasion as an added sweet treat.
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
Zoom screenshots courtesy of Ocala Civic Theatre
THE SHOW MUST GO ON Ocala Civic Theatre’s Education Department is bringing students online for another incredible virtual production.
play, by the literal definition of the word, is a creative process meant to be shared and experienced with others. But in a time when theaters are shuttered to visitors and people are encouraged to social distance, you have to get a little bit creative. And that’s just what Terry LeCompte, the director of education at the Ocala Civic Theatre, did. “We took our education department to remote learning at spring break when the schools closed,” she says. “It’s a very different process for sure with Zoom meetings and virtual rehearsals, and we didn’t know whether or not we would like online plays.” The first go at it, though, The Show Must Go Online, was a success. In a time when the kids were spending hours of the day on distance learning, theater became an outlet, a time to look forward to “hanging out” with friends and being creative—even if it was still online. As a matter of fact, only two of the theater’s 24 kids involved in the department didn’t make the switch to online. The department’s second kids’ production, 14
// B Y K A R I N FA B R Y- C U S H E N B E R Y Super Happy Awesome News, is currently in the rehearsal stage and involves a cast of 17 kids, ranging in age from 5 to 17. “Super Happy Awesome News is a musical that was written specifically for our current circumstances,” Terry says. “It was meant to be rehearsed on Zoom separately and then put together on an editing platform that pieces the individual scenes into one play.” The premise of the production is that of competing newscasts. When the older sister creates a news program that highlights only awesome stories and doesn’t include her little brother, he decides to start a competing network. And in a time when the news is anything but good, we could all use a little positivity. The play features short songs and real talk about honesty and feelings about the pandemic. It’s a good message presented in a fun, kid-friendly way. “Although we would all love to be in person creating a play, there is an individual level of creativity with these virtual productions that you don’t get in person,” Terry says. “The kids are definitely bringing their own tastes
and personalities into their scenes. They have a lot of free range, from what they wear to the props they use to where they record their scene.” It’s a three-week process for the kids, from auditions (which were done virtually) to the final recording. The production will include a private viewing party for friends and family before the show is on YouTube for anyone to enjoy. As of now, the Ocala Civic Theatre’s Education Department plans to continue its online lessons and classes through Thanksgiving. “Hopefully, after the new year, we will all be face-to-face singing, dancing and acting together,” says Terry. Ocala Civic Theatre // Check out ocalacivictheatre.com for details on productions and education/enrichment opportunities. // Visit youtube.com and search Ocala Civic Theatre Education Department to see the virtual productions. // Super Happy Awesome News will be available for viewing on August 16.
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National Roller Coaster Day is right around the corner—August 16 this year. What better way to celebrate than by checking out some new and to-come coasters in the Central Florida area?
// B Y M E L I S S A P E T E R S O N
ew rides are unveiled all the time at Florida’s theme parks. Large coasters, though? These are special. Take a look at some of the ones currently open, in the process of being built and those that will make their debut next year.
HAGRID’S MAGICAL CREATURES MOTORBIKE ADVENTURE // UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT Part of Universal’s The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, jump on Hagrid’s motorbike and soar through the Forbidden Forest beyond the grounds of the Hogwarts castle. Unveiled in summer 2019, the ride starts with a digital projection pre-show featuring encounters with Arthur Weasley, Hagrid and his loyal dog, Fang. The coaster offers the most launches—seven in total at 50 miles per hour—of any roller coaster in the world. It’s also the first coaster in the country to feature a free-fall vertical drop, dropping you nearly 17 feet, and is the longest coaster in Florida, at nearly a mile. The ride will launch you 65 feet in
Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure photos courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort; Magic Kingdom photo courtesy of Walt Disney World
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WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE steepest beyond-vertical drop in Florida and is SeaWorld’s first launch coaster. Named after an icy Arctic environment, the coaster offers riders four launches—both backward and forward— culminating in a reverse launch into a 93-feet-tall spike with a 100-degree angle. Located across
from Wild Arctic, the thrills continue as riders fly over a near vertical tophat maneuver into a series of twists, turns and airtime hills.
older, along with cast members, will be required to wear an appropriate face covering while visiting the theme parks. They must be worn over the nose and mouth at all times, except when eating and drinking while dining. Temperature screenings: All guests will be required to undergo temperature screenings prior to entering a theme park. Based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, anyone displaying a temperature of 100.4°F or higher will be directed to an additional location for rescreening and assistance. Those who again measure 100.4°F or higher will not be allowed entry, nor will those in their party. Cleanliness: High-traffic areas will receive increased cleaning. Guests will be encouraged to frequently use hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer available in the theme parks. Cashless transactions: Guests are encouraged to use cashless options whenever possible, including MagicBands, debit cards, credit cards, Disney gift cards and mobile payment methods. Character experiences: With traditional character greetings and parades on hiatus during this phased reopening, Disney characters will appear in new and different ways throughout all four theme parks. Learn more at disneyworld.com/updates.
TRON LIGHTCYCLE / RUN // DISNEY’S MAGIC KINGDOM
the air at more than a 70-degree angle, only to drop you backward in one movement.
IRON GWAZI // BUSCH GARDENS TAMPA BAY Billed as North America’s tallest and the world’s fastest and steepest hybrid coaster, Iron Gwazi plunges riders from a 206-foottall peak into a 91-degree drop, reaching top speeds of 76 miles per hour. Opening soon, the hybrid wood and steel coaster will treat riders to a dozen airtime moments, including three inversions, and all-new thrill elements as well as restored elements of Gwazi.
ICE BREAKER // SEAWORLD ORLANDO Launching later this year, Ice Breaker features the
TRON Lightcycle / Run is a coaster-style attraction that will allow riders to board a train of two-wheeled Lightcycles for a thrilling race through the digital frontier. Located in Tomorrowland right next to Space Mountain, the TRON attraction is set to open at Magic Kingdom in time for Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary in 2021.
THEME PARK REOPENING GUIDELINES Wondering what things are like around theme parks in the midst of COVID-19? Check out these guidelines and stay safe while having fun.
WALT DISNEY WORLD Reservation system: Guests with a ticket or annual pass must use the new Disney Park Pass system to make a reservation in advance for each park entry. Once guests log in to their My Disney Experience accounts on disneyworld. com and link their tickets, they have access to a calendar of available reservation dates for each theme park. Face coverings: All guests 2 years of age and
OTHER PARKS Just like at Disney, face coverings, temperature checks and social distancing are required throughout Universal Orlando, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and SeaWorld Orlando. Limiting capacity and following social distancing guidelines throughout all attractions, restaurants and shops, as well as increased cleaning and disinfection procedures of all high-touch surfaces, are a part of each of these theme park’s reopening plans. In addition, all team members will wear face coverings, undergo temperature checks and participate in extensive training on the new procedures. To view all the guidelines, visit universalorlando.com, buschgardens.com/tampa and seaworld.com/orlando. AUG ‘20
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE concerns she sees in summertime are overheating, bite wounds from other dogs or snakes, paw pad burns, saltwater poisoning and orthopedic injuries. She likes pet parents to take a pet first aid kit and fresh water on any outings with their dog and to know the location of the nearest animal ER. “Make sure that surfaces are not too hot for your pup to walk on by feeling them with your own hand; if you can keep it there for about five seconds without burning, your pet should be safe,” says Dr. Stone. “The signs of overheating are panting, followed by disorientation and fast, noisy breathing. If you feel that your dog is starting to overheat, wet the dog with cool water and move them to a cooler environment. If symptoms persist, you should call a veterinarian immediately and let them know you are on the way with an overheated dog.” Before heading into the wilderness or water, talk to your vet about potential parasites and pests before you go—your furry friend may need some extra preventative meds or vaccines. Sunnie Fang, a volunteer at the Humane Society of Marion County, takes shelter pups to local parks on outings. She says flea and tick prevention is key and shares other tips, too: • KNOW YOUR DOG. “In public, dogs all have their different personalities. Some love people and some would rather have their own space. Some are reactive to other dogs. Some are comfortable at home, but once they’re leashed, they get anxious. The owner needs to know their dog’s personality.”
Pets In Public
Safely exploring the outdoors and pet-friendly places with your pooch. // B Y K AT I E M C P H E R S O N
ummertime in Florida means waterfront weekends, hikes in the Ocala National Forest and visits to outdoor eateries. And, when these locales are pet friendly, why not bring your pup along? But before you grab the leash and head out the door together, consider these tips from local experts on safely exploring with your pet. For starters, make sure your pet 18
can be easily identified. “Make sure that your pet is microchipped and that microchip is registered to you, so that if your dog gets lost, you can be reunited,” says Dr. Amy Stone, clinical assistant professor at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine and chief of the UF Small Animal Hospital’s primary care and dentistry services. Dr. Stone said the most common canine
• READ THE RULES. “Some trails say keep the dog on the right side of the trail or keep them away from the trail, so read the rules first before you go anywhere. We also need to respect people’s space. Some people like dogs, and others are afraid. If your dog loves to say hello, always ask permission before you approach people.” • BE PREPARED. “I always bring bottled water and bowls for the dogs to drink. I have some vet wraps, just in case, and antibiotic ointment. If it’s hot, I will apply some wax on their paws (called Musher’s Secret).” • DON’T DRINK THE WATER. “Sometimes we take the dogs to the beach, and they have lots of fun, but I remind people not to allow their dog to drink the water. Also, water in a lake can be very dangerous. It can have contamination or algae, and I’ve known of dogs losing their life.”
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
Streets With Stories Rather than purchasing a guidebook on your next Florida getaway, download the Florida Stories app for local stories from local voices. // B Y M E L I S S A P E T E R S O N
Photos by 500PX courtesy of VISIT FLORIDA
ver been to a new city and wandered around aimlessly, looking at buildings and statues while wondering about their significance? The Florida Stories app, designed by the Florida Humanities nonprofit organization, hopes to help. The free Florida Stories app launched in 2015 as part of Florida’s 500th year celebration and offers walking tours of our state’s cities and towns accompanied with photos and audio. “Our first walking tour featured Spanish Colonial Florida in St. Augustine with a plan in mind to develop community walking tours across Florida through our grants program,” says Lisa Lennox, digital media manager with Florida Stories. “Our goal was to reach younger, more technically savvy residents and cultural tourists alike. We currently have 36 walking tours, from Pensacola to Key West.” Florida Stories provides the history and culture of Florida through a mobile app using scholar-researched content. Tour-goers can expect to hear high-quality, fully narrated tours that are GPS-enabled and will guide you from stop to stop. They will also be able to view over 5,000 historical and present-day images that are synchronized with the audio narration.
One such tour visits Lincolnville, in St. Augustine, and features buildings such as Excelsior High School. Built in 1902, the building was originally used as a school for Black students until 1928. It is now home to the Lincolnville Museum. The tour also stops at St. Paul’s American Methodist Episcopal Church, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke to hundreds in May 1964 during the Civil Rights movement. Another stop on the tour highlights the Bridge Street Marches, where you can follow the path that the Civil Rights demonstrators took on a night in late May 1964, first along Central Avenue, the street’s name in 1964. Three narrators have lent their voices to the Florida Stories app. Phyllis McEwan, a resident of Tampa, has recorded all of the African American heritage walking tours. McEwan is
a retired librarian and Chautauqua, who for several years portrayed Zora Neale Hurston. Bill Dudley, a resident of Dade City, has recorded several tours. He is a local audio engineer and videographer who can be heard on WMNF’s Live Music Showcase on Fridays from 2-3pm. Chaz Mena is an actor/writer based in Miami and was the first narrator for Florida Stories. Mena currently serves as the executive producer with Vanguardia Films in San Juan, Puerto Rico. “As the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, it is our duty to share with as many people as possible the stories of our state,” says Lennox. “We knew from the start that we wanted to create an app that would easily disseminate Florida’s history and at the same time making it accessible to all. It is Florida history in the palm of your hand.” Florida Stories // Download this free app for all iOS and Android devices or accessed via the website’s Web app. Visit floridahumanities. org/media/florida-stories-audio-tours to learn more. AUG ‘20
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
The Outdoor Life Each month we’ll visit a different park in the Florida State Park system. This month we’re at Tomoka State Park in Ormond Beach, which offers a unique outdoor experience that’s perfect for a little nature therapy. // B Y M E L I S S A P E T E R S O N
Photos courtesy of Florida State Parks
rom exploring the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail to traversing the Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail, Tomoka State Park is nothing short of a nature-lover’s paradise. And with the park’s history dating back to the early 1600s, there’s plenty to learn about the area as well. If spending a day at Tomoka, you might want to start your adventure on the water. Whether you brought your own or you’re looking for a rental, kayaks and canoes are the perfect way to explore the park’s lagoons that lead to the Tomoka River. Kayak rentals are available inside the park, and a boat ramp allows you to launch your own craft or a rental, providing access to the Tomoka River and the Intracoastal Waterway. “The rivers and tributaries offer a beautiful place to observe the varied bird and marine life of the area,” says Alex Cronin, who works in the press office of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. “Canoeists are advised to use the rivers and creeks and not to venture into the Tomoka Basin except on very calm days. All of the waters in the vicinity of the park are a designated manatee sanctuary.” After your time on the water, take a stroll through the half-mile interpretive trail that winds its way through a hardwood hammock. Tomoka State Park has a rich history and culture. Native Americans once dwelled in the lands that are now
encompassed within the park, and the trail visits areas formerly inhabited by the Timucuan Tribe. “Visitors will pass through the ancient Timucuan village site of Nocoroco, a once thriving community along the banks of the Tomoka River,” says Alex. “Although nothing remains of the village, shell middens, mounds of oyster and snail shells from decades of Native American meals, reach 40 feet high at the river bank.” Tomoka is also the perfect spot for birdwatching enthusiasts, especially during the spring and fall migrations, as over 160 species have been sighted in the park. Beyond birds, the park also protects a variety of wildlife habitats and endangered species, such as the West Indian manatee. “Although wildlife viewing experiences will vary depending on the season, some of the yearround residents include white-tailed deer, gopher tortoise, bob cat and a variety of snakes,” says Alex. “In the cooler months you will be more likely to see migratory bird species, which are heading
south to escape the cold weather.” Looking to spend more than a day at the park? Consider packing your tent and sleeping bag and staying the weekend at the on-site campground. Located in a shady hammock near the Tomoka River, each of the park’s 100 campsites has a picnic table, grill, electric hookups and water, and the campground offers guests three restrooms with hot showers. If you’re looking to get away from the buzz of the city while still staying close to home, Tomoka State Park is a solid option. “Tomoka State Park is a prime example of an urban park,” says Alex. “Surrounded on all sides by development and just minutes from all modern conveniences, it is far enough removed from the busy world to afford visitors the opportunity to enjoy a starry sky after dark.” Tomoka State Park // 2099 North Beach Street, Ormond Beach // (386) 676-4050 // floridastateparks.org/Tomoka // Open from 8am to sundown, 365 days a year // Entrance fee is $5 per vehicle (up to 8 people). Check the website to pay online before visiting. // Some park facilities, including restrooms, may be closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Contact the park for specific updates and to find out more about kayak rentals.
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D G FRIENDLY DESTINATIONS Ready for vacation, but don’t want to leave your best friend home alone? Take Fido with you on your next getaway to one of these pet-centric locales.
or many of us, our four-legged family members are just that—family, so we want to include them in our getaways. If you hope to make vacation memories with your pup, you’re in luck. We’ve scoped out three destinations where you can have a fabulous time that includes your dog. Before hitting the road, make sure your pup is up to date on vaccinations and ask ahead of time if your hotel/inn requires proof. Bring
enough dog food, familiar bowls, dog bed/ blanket, leash and, if you’re heading to the beach, pack a second collar to swap for the saltwater-soaked one so it doesn’t irritate your dog’s skin. Pick one of these welcoming destinations and let the planning commence! If you’re searching for pet-friendly accommodations in other areas, check out bringfido.com/lodging/state/florida.
Panama City Beach photo courtesy of Visit Panama City Beach
By Cynthia McFarland
PANAMA CITY BEACH
Panama city beach
This scenic Panhandle beach town rolls out the welcome mat to visitors traveling with their pups. When planning your getaway to Panama City Beach, if your group is adults and pet(s) only, make reservations to stay at the Wisteria Inn, a charming boutique motel just off the beach. Unlike large chain hotels, The Wisteria Inn is reminiscent of an earlier era, with its 14 individually decorated, ground-level rooms and welcoming atmosphere. Located in a quiet, residential area, the inn is situated directly across from a beach entrance, so in less than two minutes you can walk right onto the pristine sugar sand of the Gulf. Owner Bronwen Dukate (or “Miss B,” as guests refer to her) bought the inn almost 20 years ago and runs it with a personal touch that draws many repeat customers. Pet fees are a modest $15 per pet. “About 40 percent of our guests bring pets,” says Bronwen, a native of London who was raised in the Panhandle and was a certified diver for many years. Though the rooms may not be “fancy,” they are equipped with luxuriously comfortable mattresses, plush towels and robes. Beach chairs and umbrellas are provided at no charge. The tropical gardens surrounding the pool and hot tub create a literal oasis with a relaxing, private setting. Guests appreciate the free wine and mimosas served daily and rave about the Wisteria Inn as a “small, but lovely beach hotel for adults and their pets.”
SANIBEL & CAPTIVA ISLANDS
MAKE CONTACT 1. Wisteria Inn // wisteria-inn.com // (850) 234-0557 2. Pineapple Beach Resort // pineapplebeachresort.com // (850) 234-1788 3. Dog Friendly Restaurants // bringfido. com/restaurant/city/panama_city_ beach_fl_us 4. Panama City Beach Parks & Recreation // panamacitybeachparksandrecreation.com 5. Island Times Sailing // islandtimessailing.com 6. Salty Sues // saltysues.com 7. Pineapple Willy’s // pwillys.com 8. Ocean of Love Pet Sitting // oceanoflovepetsitting.com 9. Lagoon Pontoon // lagoonpontoon.com 24
At Sanibel Captiva Beach Resorts, you’ll find four different properties—all of which are pet friendly, making this the perfect spot for a vacay with your pup. (Vacation rentals are also available.) ‘Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa on Captiva occupies 15 sprawling acres, including its own private beach. This resort also features a full-service marina with fishing charter captains, rental boats, waverunners, parasailing and more. Complimentary canoe, kayak and bike usage is included in the nightly rate. Not all rooms are pet friendly, so be sure to specify that you’re bringing your dog when booking. Pet rates are $35 per pet, per day, with a maximum of two pets per unit. You’ll receive a pet goodie bag, and there’s a pet agreement you’ll sign upon check-in. Castaways Beach & Bay Cottages
features 37 cottages on Sanibel, and it’s a bit more private, something many pet parents appreciate. If you want to take in a fine-dining meal or an activity where you can’t bring your dog, you’re able to leave well-behaved pets in your cottage. Of course, this area is known for its shelling, and certain spots are better than others. “At Blind Beach Pass (the location of Castaways), shelling is renowned there between the two islands. Captiva Beach is also good,” says Doug Babcock, CEO of Sanibel Captiva Beach Resorts. “You can only get to Cayo Costa State Park by boat, which limits the people and is one reason shelling is good there. You can rent your own boat or take Captiva Cruises.” Exploring by boat is definitely recommended when you come to the islands. You can rent one or sign on for a lunch cruise with Captiva Cruises. J.N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel is a must-visit (closed Fridays). Drive, hike or bike the four-mile Wildlife Drive and keep your eyes peeled for many water and shore birds, raccoons, gators, marsh rabbits, even the occasional otter and bobcat. Be sure to visit Captiva Village, with its intriguing Key West vibe, barely a mile down the road from the resort. Take a bike or walk there along the beach. Check out the boutiques and enjoy a meal at one of the multiple eateries; most have outdoor seating and several are pet friendly. The island is known for Key Lime Pie, so even if you eat elsewhere, catch dessert at The Bubble Room, which is widely recognized for
Beachview Cottages photo courtesy of Beachview Cottages; Old Captiva House photo courtesy of Sanibel Captiva Beach Resorts; Alfond Inn photo courtesy of Alfond Inn
Families can opt to rent a petfriendly villa right on the beach at Pineapple Beach Resort where all units are ground level. Frolic with your dog in the surf (leashes required) on the dog-friendly beach at Pier Park, which also boasts many shopping, dining and entertainment options. For off-leash exercise, take advantage of the doggie area at Frank Brown Park. You and your leashed dog will appreciate the miles of trails and boardwalks at Panama City Beach Conservation Park, a petfriendly wilderness park open daily sunrise to sunset. Check out the 1500-footlong pier at popular fishing spot Russell-Fields City Pier for angler action and expansive Gulf views. Beachview Cottages If you’re in town on Thursday evening, check out the outdoor concert series at Aaron Bessant Park. Over 40 Panama City Beach restaurants have pet-friendly patio dining areas. Find them all when you visit bringfido.com and type in Panama City Beach. Some don’t miss locations include Salty Sue’s and Pineapple Willy’s. Should you book a fishing charter or sailing adventure, look into hiring a pet sitter to care for your dog at your rental unit while you’re away. Or consider a pontoon boat rental where you can take your pup with you. Lagoon Pontoons comes excellently recommended.
its sweet treats. You can even get it to go and enjoy back at your room/cottage later. Treat yourself to a fine-dining meal at least one night of your stay and enjoy the resort’s own Old Captiva House where the local seafood and steak are exceptional.
MAKE CONTACT 1. Sanibel & Captiva Beach Resorts // sanibelcaptivabeachresorts.com 2. ‘Tween Waters Island Resort & Spa // tween-waters.com // (800) 223-5865 3. Castaways Cottages // castaways-cottages.com // (800) 375-0152 4. Old Captiva House // oldcaptivahouse.com 5. Captiva Cruises // captivacruises.com 6. J.N. Ding Darling // fws.gov/refuge/jn_ding_darling 7. Cayo Costa // floridastateparks.org/CayoCosta
The stylish 112-room boutique hotel celebrates its seventh anniversary this month and is right at home in this upscale neighborhood. The hotel’s own museum-quality contemporary art collection is on display throughout the inn. When you call to make reservations be sure to ask about the “Very Important Pup” package, which features a classic room, specialty dog bowl, a variety of doggie treats and toys (including a tennis ball!) and a donation to Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando.
For activities where you can’t bring Fido, look into Dogtopia for doggie day care. No visit to Winter Park is complete without taking the hour-long Scenic Boat Tour (a tradition since 1938), which operates daily from 10am to 4pm. During the tour, which includes Lakes Osceola, Virginia and Maitland, as well as several winding, scenic canals (originally built in the 1800s to accommodate the logging industry), you’ll have unparalleled views of Rollins College,
old captiva house
Despite its proximity to Orlando’s theme parks, Winter Park lacks that “big city” feel. Think classy European village instead of urban hustle and bustle. This Central Florida town ranks high on the dog-friendly meter. You and your furry friend will stay in elegance when you book a room at the petfriendly Alfond Inn, located just a block from Park Avenue, which is the social hub of town.
Staying at the Alfond Inn affords an array of amenities, including the stunning conservatory, elevated outdoor pool, lush courtyard, fitness center and, of course, Hamilton’s Kitchen, its own high-end restaurant where pets can accompany their owners in the outdoor dining area. It’s a favorite with many locals for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. Over four dozen (!) Winter Park restaurants and cafes are pet friendly. Find new favorites at bringfido.com when you type in Winter Park. Well-behaved pooches are also welcome in many of the boutiques along Park Avenue, as evidenced by water bowls out front and Winter Bark Chamber of Commerce window clings. Art lovers already know about Winter Park’s stellar museums. At the Morse Museum, you’ll discover the world’s most comprehensive collection of Louis Comfort Tiffany. Other can’t-miss museums include the Albin Polasek Museum and Sculpture Gardens and the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, located on the campus of Rollins College.
the Kraft Azalea Gardens and magnificent waterfront homes. The 12-mile-long boat tour offers a wonderful opportunity to learn interesting facts and trivia about Winter Park and the area’s famous residents. (At press time, masks were required for the boat tours.)
MAKE CONTACT 1. The Alfond Inn // thealfondinn.com // (407) 998-8090 2. Scenic Boat Tour // (407) 644-4056 3. Dogtopia // dogtopia.com/orlando-winter-park 4. Dog Friendly Restaurants // bringfido. com/restaurant/city/winter_park_fl_us/ 5. Morse Museum // morsemuseum.org 6. Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens // polasek.org 7. Cornell Fine Arts Museum // rollins.edu/cornell-fine-arts-museum 8. Winter Park History Museum // wphistory.org AUG ‘20
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
GOOEY GOODN // W R I T T E N B Y K A R I N FA B R Y- C U S H E N B E R Y // P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y LISA ANDERSON
lthough no one knows for certain where the original idea for s’mores came from, it’s widely accepted that the first known s’mores recipe is
credited to the Girl Scouts. A recipe, originally named Some Mores, appeared in their 1927 handbook, Tramping and Trailing With the Girl Scouts. It’s early predecessors, the mallomar and moon pie, were first thought of in 1913 and 1917 respectively. But regardless of how this sweet treat came to be, one thing is for sure. We are grateful. And we think you should treat yourself! After all, a marshmallow is half air. Don’t believe us? Look it up! Over the years, s’mores connoisseurs have experimented with substitutions for the three classic ingredients—marshmallows, chocolate bars and graham crackers—and some of the results are definitely worth trying.
SWEET & SOUR S’MORES
• • • •
Sour Patch Kid marshmallows Fruity Pebbles cereal White chocolate candy bars Sugar cookies
Place two candy bar sections on each of four cookies. Place on grill over mediumhigh heat for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, or until bottom of cookies are browned. Using a skewer, toast Sour Patch Kids marshmallow until the edges become golden brown. Remove marshmallow from skewer, place on cookie and top with another cookie. Immediately roll edges in Fruity Pebbles cereal.
With National S’mores Day just around the corner (it’s August 10, in case you forgot to mark your calendars), we thought it was high time to dedicate a few pages to these ooey, gooey, sweet creations.
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
S’MORE MINT, PLEASE • Large marshmallows • Andes Mints • Mint Oreos
Toast marshmallow or place on microwave-safe plate and heat in microwave a few seconds at a time. Marshmallow will expand in microwave. Let it deflate slightly before using. Carefully place marshmallow on mint Oreo cookie and top with Andes Mints. Squish second mint Oreo cookie on top to seal s’more. Optional: To add more mint flavor, roll sides of the s’more in crushed mint Oreos to enhance the flavor.
NO GRILL? NO FIREPIT? NO PROBLEM!
COCO CARAMEL S’MORES
• • • •
Graham crackers Large marshmallows Rolos caramel candies Shaved coconut, optional
Toast or heat marshmallow however you choose. Place marshmallow on graham cracker square and top with two Rolos candies. Add another graham cracker square to top off the sandwich. If desired, roll the edges in shaved coconut.
• • • •
Large marshmallows Graham crackers Bailey’s Irish Creme Hershey’s Chocolate candy bars
If you have a firepit available, toast marshmallow on a sturdy stick or metal skewer over the flame. Keep the marshmallow just above the flame, and rotate often to avoid burning. When outside is crispy and inside gooey, it’s ready. (If not, you can use the grill option in the above recipe). Dip the marshmallow in Bailey’s Irish Crème, and let it seep in for a few seconds. Place the marshmallow on a graham cracker, top with a section of chocolate bar and top off with another graham cracker.
Long for that toasted, crispy, perfect marshmallow? Did you know all you need is an oven? Here’s how to do it. Line up large marshmallows on a baking sheet (you may want to line it with parchment paper first), and broil in the oven until the tops are a toasted brown color. Make sure you keep a close eye on the marshmallows to prevent burning. Once browned, remove the tray from the oven and use tongs to gently turn the marshmallows over. Return the marshmallows to the oven to toast the other side. Once browned on both sides, serve immediately in your favorite s’more.
S’MORE FACTS • Presbyterian minister Sylvester Graham invented the graham cracker in 1829 in Bound Brook, New Jersey. • The world’s largest s’more was made in Pennsylvania in 2014. It was made from 140 pounds of marshmallows and 90 pounds each of chocolate and graham crackers. Total weight? 267 pounds. • According to a release from The Hershey Company, the company produces more than 373 million milk chocolate bars each year, enough to make 746 million s’mores. • Marshmallows, or rather sap from the mallow root, were once thought to be medicinal, helping to soothe sore, scratchy throats.
754 NE 25th Ave., Ocala // (352) 620-9255 Tue-Thur 11:30am-9pm // Fri-Sat 11:30am-10pm Sun 11:30am-8pm // Mon Closed
Two Locations: 3790 E Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala // (352) 694-1401 // Mon-Sun 11am-10pm // 3510 SW 36th Ave. (SR 200), Ocala // (352) 291-2121 // Mon-Sun 11am-11pm
Now open with a brand-new menu and newly renovated dining room, you’ll experience Braised Onion’s famous “Comfort Food With Attitude” every time you visit. Begin your meal with an appetizer of Pow Pow Shrimp tossed in a sweet and spicy glaze, or the Shrimp & Chilled Noodle Bowl is also a great pre-entrée starter. If you’re dining for lunch, try the Turkey Pesto Croissant or Bloody Mary Burger, and don’t miss the Seafood Cioppino or Grilled Pork Tenderloin for dinner. With a unique blend of savory and sophisticated, let Braised Onion be the restaurant you visit for every occasion. Make your reservations today!
Head to El Toreo on Thursdays from 7-9pm for Trivia Night (Blvd.) and an authentic Mariachi band (SR 200) from 6-9pm. On Sundays, children’s meals are just $1.95. Lunch specials: $5.45 Taco Salad Mondays, $5.45 Speedy Gonzalez Tuesdays, $7.95 Quesadilla Wednesdays, $6.95 Chimichanga Thursdays and $5.95 Burrito Supreme Fridays. Dinner specials: $10.95 Fajita Mondays, $8.95 Chimichanga Tuesdays, $9.95 Alambre Wednesdays and $9.95 Tacos de Bistec Thursdays. Margarita specials: $1.95 margarita Mondays, 99 cent margarita Wednesdays and 2-4-1 margarita Saturdays.
BRUSTER’S REAL ICE CREAM
MARK’S PRIME STEAKHOUSE & SEAFOOD
2707 E Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala // (352) 622-2110 // brusters.com/ocala // Sun-Thurs 12-10pm // Fri-Sat 12-11pm
30 S Magnolia Ave., Ocala // (352) 402-0097 // 201 SE 2nd Ave., Gainesville // (352) 336-0077 // marksprimesteakhouse.com // Mon 5-9pm // Tue-Sat 5-10pm // Sun available for private parties
It’s finally summer, and it’s definitely hot outside, which means it’s time to head to Bruster’s to grab a cool treat. Bruster’s serves all your favorite flavors plus plenty of exciting options. Make sure you save room to try the Flavor of the Month for August, Jamaican Me Crazy. Along with the 24 fresh flavors offered daily, there are also no-sugar-added, fat-free alternatives, frozen yogurts, sherbets and sorbets, shakes, sundaes, splits (half off on Thursdays if you bring your own banana!), blasts, cakes and pies. You can even treat your pup to a free doggie sundae. With all these choices, there’s sure to be a cone—or cup— you’ll love! 28
Mark’s Prime wants to create a sophisticated and unique dining experience that will please the palate and soothe the soul. Mark’s Prime serves only the finest beef, freshest seafood, premium wines and a diverse stock of bourbons and scotch. Visit Mark’s Prime during Primetime Happy Hour and get great drink and appetizer specials Monday-Saturday from 5-7pm. They are pleased to have been serving the finest quality dining experience since November 2002 and hope to see you very soon at one of their two great locations in Gainesville or Ocala. Outdoor dining available for those guests who wish to dine al fresco.
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
Don’t let your guests show up without appetizers on the table. These veggie-inspired starters are light and easy to eat while mingling.
CARAMELIZED SWEET ONION HUMMUS • 1 whole garlic head • 4 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon, extravirgin olive oil, divided • 1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced • 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (about 1⁄2 lemon) • 1⁄2 cup tahini (toasted ground sesame seeds) • 1 teaspoon salt
Heat oven to 350°F. Cut top of garlic head off, and place cut-side down on pan; drizzle with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Bake 20-30 minutes, or until garlic is soft. Once cool, squeeze garlic from each clove. In large skillet over medium-high heat, cook onion in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Stir onion frequently until slices begin to brown. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking until onions are soft and reach medium brown color. Rinse and drain chickpeas; reserve 3 tablespoons liquid. In food processor, blend chickpeas, reserved liquid, lemon juice, tahini, garlic, salt, remaining olive oil and onions until combined and smooth. Serve with pita bread, veggies or crackers. Recipe courtesy of the National Onion Association. Find more recipe ideas at onions-usa.org.
Party Pleasers Hosting a tailgate party this fall? Score big points with these crowd-friendly recipes. // W R I T T E N & C O M P I L E D B Y M E L I S S A P E T E R S O N
lthough the fate of football was hanging in the balance as of press time, we’re all crossing our pompoms that the disaster that is the year 2020 will produce a safe, entertaining season of college and professional sports. And while we likely won’t be able to attend games in person, we can enjoy the season from the comfort of our homes surrounded by friends—albeit a small group, if sticking to social distancing rules. If you’re going to have a party, you might as well outdo yourself in the food department. From appetizers to a delectable dessert, these recipes will satisfy a crowd whether football season is a bust or not. And if all else fails you can always gather around for the world cornhole championships.
STUFFED CHERRY TOMATOES • 24-48 cherry tomatoes • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced • 3 green onion stalks, diced • 2 teaspoons minced dill • fresh dill, for garnish
Cut thin slice off top of each tomato. Scoop out pulp. Invert tomatoes on paper towel to drain. In medium bowl, combine cream cheese and mayonnaise until smooth. Stir in cucumber, green onion and dill. Spoon mixture into tomatoes. Top with fresh dill. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Find more snack recipes at culinary.net.
WATCH // EXPLORE // CRAVE
THE WATER BREAK
Although some guests might BYOB, this punch recipe is perfect for hydrating a crowd.
THE BIG PLAY
The main course is the perfect time to score a touchdown. These recipes are sure to make headlines.
THE EXTRA POINT
Finish off the menu with something sweet and delectable—these whoopie pies are sure to leave your fans wanting more.
PULLED PORK SANDWICHES • 1 1⁄2 pounds pork shoulder • 2-3 whole cloves • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika or smoky spice rub • 1 red onion, sliced thin • 1 cup water • 6 ounces barbecue sauce
Stud pork with cloves, and rub with seasoning blend. Place roast in slow cooker, and top with onions. Cover pork with water and slow cook 8-10 hours. Remove pork, discard cloves and then drain fat and water. Allow pork to cool; then shred by hand or with fork. Return meat to pot, and add barbecue sauce. Heat 1-2 hours. Serve alone or on roll. Find more recipes at Culinary.net.
FIZZY ORANGE PINEAPPLE PUNCH • 1 can (46 ounces) pineapple juice, chilled • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk • 1 can (6 ounces) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed • 1 bottle (2 liters) ginger ale • 6-8 scoops orange sherbet • orange slices, for garnish • mint leaves, for garnish
In large punch bowl, combine pineapple juice, condensed milk and orange juice concentrate. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Before serving, add ginger ale and top with scoops of sherbet, orange slices and mint. Find more drink recipes at culinary.net.
CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI MAC & CHEESE • 2 packages (12 ounces each) Signature Cafe Classic Macaroni and Cheese • 1 cup frozen broccoli • 2 Signature Cafe Whole Roasted Chicken Breasts (about 1 cup), skin removed and diced into 1⁄2-inch cubes • 1⁄2 cup cracker crumbs • Nonstick cooking spray
Preheat oven to 400°F. // Coat 6-by-9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. // Add macaroni and cheese, broccoli and chicken, stirring to combine until well incorporated. // Top with cracker crumbs. // Bake 20 minutes, or until heated through. Visit albertsons.com/exclusivebrands to shop for grocery delivery or pickup at your local store.
WHOOPIE PIES • • • • • • • • •
1 box spice cake mix 1 1⁄2 cups apple butter 1⁄2 cup canola oil 2 eggs 8 ounces cream cheese 4 tablespoons butter 3 cups powdered sugar 2 tablespoons milk 1 teaspoon vanilla
Heat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. In large bowl, whisk spice cake mix, apple butter, oil and eggs. With ice cream scoop or large tablespoon, spoon batter into rounded heaps (even better if you can make them shaped like footballs!), about 2-3 inches in diameter, onto parchment paper. Space spooned batter 2 inches apart. Bake 14 minutes. Let cool. In large bowl, beat cream cheese, butter and powdered sugar until smooth. Add milk and vanilla; beat until blended. Frost flat sides of pie halves and place halves together. Refrigerate and store in sealed container. Find more dessert recipes at Culinary.net.
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Ocala's Guide to Entertainment, Nightlife & Family Fun Don't let the sun set on summer without scheduling the perfect getaway for the whole...
Published on Jul 31, 2020
Ocala's Guide to Entertainment, Nightlife & Family Fun Don't let the sun set on summer without scheduling the perfect getaway for the whole...