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PEOPLE & PLACES

with paula

Let’s Get Primitive

D

A NEANDERTHAL NIGHT AT THE SCIENCE CENTER.

rum roll, please! No, wait. Let’s imagine the sound

of a big stick on a flat rock, instead. That’s more appropriate to introduce the winners of the Harriett Lake Caveman Couture & Costume Contest at the Orlando Science Center’s annual Neanderthal Ball. The competition was as hot as a spouting volcano this year as more social spelunkers than ever donned prehistoric apparel to go faux-Flintstone. You like the leopard-skin look? Well, the scene inside could have passed for a National Geographic special. Except we didn’t have to chase down our food. Let’s make up an award right now, shall we, and hand it out to the Cave Inn restaurant for the Most Appropriate Food Option. Far be it from me to dispute the eatery’s claim that it served up “Tyrannosaurus Ribs.” Still, let’s not forget the other vendors: Puff n’ Stuff, Orlando Brewing, Darden, and Gigi’s Cupcakes. Everything was delicious and nothing tasted prehistoric.

Anyway, the Caveman Couture winners: Maria Ruthkowski, Eva Krzewinski, Wendy Wallenberg, Josh Garrick and Jim Hennessey. But don’t think we were all about just looking good. One of the nice things about the Neanderthal Ball — the motto, by the way, is “600,000 years in the making,” which presumably makes it the oldest ball in town — is that many of the museum’s displays are manned by volunteers more than willing to tell you just how old that big scary prehistoric shark tooth is. Makes you appreciate the food-chain options being served all the more. The event raises money for the center’s youth-education programs. So enjoy, all you dear little nerdlings. And a big, monosyllabic mmmmmwwwwaaaa! and a chorus of “Wild Thing, You Make My Heart Sing” to eponymous philanthropist Harriett Lake, who wasn’t feeling well that night and could not attend.

1. Emily Ellyn, Sunshine Baker 2. Orlando Science Center exhibits provided the setting for the Neanderthal Ball

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2. ORLANDO LIFE

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PEOPLE AND PLACES

with paula

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5. 3. Mark Armstrong, Flora Maria Garcia, JoAnn Newman 4. Wendy Wallenberg, Maxine Earhart, Josh Garrick 5. JoAnn Newman, Dr. Ann Manley, Robert Finfrock 6. Dennis Lind, Rita Simaan

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HOW NOW, CABS AND COWS?

Ye haw! I left my ball gown at home and put on some over-

priced leather pants that I’ve been looking for an excuse to wear and headed out to join more than 400 friends in Central Park’s West Meadow for the third annual Cows ’n Cabs event. Let there be pig! And you know, when John Rivers of 4 Rivers Smokehouse is at the head of the table, there’ll be lots and lots of it. I enjoyed chatting it up with the folks from the short list of invitation-only local restaurants, who dished up everything from chocolate-covered bacon to lobster. I lost count at around 200 wines, spirits and craft-beer samplings provided by Florida Distribution Company, Beam, Southern Wine & Spirits and ABC Fine Wine & Spirits. 58

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I played Wine Ring Toss (yes!) with some spirited cigarsmoking friends who were explaining the nuances of the new signature series of cigars provided by event partner Drew Estates. I put the barbecue down just long enough to catch up with Andrea Massey Farrell and her friends in the Spraker Wealth Management VIP area, where I got to meet some new friends from title sponsor, Stella Artois. Great to see Jamie McFadden, owner of Cuisiniers Catered Cuisine & Events and Chris Hughes from Christner’s Prime Steak & Lobster. Good night, great cause, with 100 percent of ticket sale proceeds and auction items benefiting the Community Food & Outreach Center and Elevate Orlando, which assists with fighting hunger and mentoring at-risk youth. n DECEMBER 2013


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1. Chefs and friends convene in the West Meadow 2. Jill’s Cashbox Band 3. Gabriela Diaz, Evan Done, Katarina Coumbaros 4. Eman Alosaimi, C. Major, Chloe Grandin, Samantha Lieberman, Alea Zubkin 5. Dave Larue, Amy and Tyler Chandler, Tina Larue

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THERE’S MORE ONLINE

Using your mobile device, scan the QR code or go to orlando-life.com and see more pictures and stories from these and other events held throughout Central Florida. Native Floridian Paula Wyatt is an Orlando event planner, socialmedia expert and entrepreneur whose companies include Posh Able Events, Posh Able Image Builders and the nonprofit Posh Abilities. You can reach her at paula@poshableevents.com. ORLANDO LIFE

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People and Places with Paula - Orlando Life Magazine December 2013