Weekend things to do in South Florida Jan. 12-15
A decade ago, when Tortuga Music Festival first rolled ashore, the idea of putting crowds of people on the sand in Fort Lauderdale for an organized event that did not involve Blue Angels seemed revolutionary.
But Tortuga’s instant success at Fort Lauderdale Beach Park begat Riptide (now called Audacy Beach Festival), and the same stretch of beach soon will host Pride Fort Lauderdale’s inaugural Pride of the Americas festival. The three-day event, Feb. 10-12, will include a performance by pop icon Boy George. Visit PrideFortLauderdale.org.
Smaller gatherings, trading scale for an engaging if-you-know-you-know locals vibe, also make use of the unique environment on other sections of the beach. A third edition of the exuberant sand-in-your-toes wine party known as Seaglass: The Fort Lauderdale Rosé Experience will return to the waterfront opposite the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort Jan. 20-22. Visit SeaglassExperience.com.
Farther north, on the sand in front of the historic Bonnet House, a new event called Moonrise is set for Feb. 4. This inaugural “modern disco party” will include music (DJ Tony Zuccaro), cocktails (thanks Tito’s Vodka and Constellation Brands) and light bites under a full moon. Presented by the Moss Foundation, and organized by local movers and shakers Sara Shake, Chad Moss and Phil DeBiasi, the event is a benefit for nonprofit Handy Homes. Visit HandyInc.org/events.
Of course, no venue has had more of a consistent influence on the re-curation of the beach in Fort Lauderdale than Las Olas Oceanside Park, which in 2019 transformed the city’s most iconic intersection from tired plot of asphalt into a graceful embrace of nature and the sea.
This weekend the LOOP is the setting for the several of the more accessible events that conclude the Visit Fort Lauderdale Food & Wine Festival, its popularity evidenced by sellouts of many of its dinners and gatherings this week. VFLFW events that you can still get into (at press time) are included below. For more information about the festival, which benefits Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, visit VLFoodWine.com.
(Note to self: Tickets to see the U.S. Navy Blue Angels at the Fort Lauderdale Air Show April 28-30 just went on sale at FortLauderdaleAirShow.com.)
DaSilva dinner: “Hell’s Kitchen” chef Paula DaSilva brings the heat to VFLFW with a dinner called Paula and Friends at Burlock Coast in the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale at 7 p.m. Thursday. Along with her wife, Chef Carissa DaSilva (Fort Lauderdale Harbor Beach Marriott), the assembled friends include Chef David MacLennan (Even Keel), Chef Brad Phillips (Even Keel) and Christie Tenaud (Union Kitchen & Bar). Tickets cost $165+ at VLFoodWine.com.
Small plates: The Art of Tapas Pairing Dinner is another VFLFW event taking place at 7 p.m. Thursday at S3 on Fort Lauderdale beach, with Chef Martin Verano (YOLO) and Chef Lyndsey Waters (TRP Taste and Rooftop @1WLO) preparing a six-course rum dinner against a background of local art. Tickets cost $199+ at VLFoodWine.com.
Beer up: Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park will host the VFLFW event Hop’d Up, an elevated five-course beer-pairing dinner offered by the brewery’s Chef Jeff Vincent (who once led the kitchen at Beauty and the Feast in the Atlantic Hotel). Among the rare brews to be served is a chardonnay barrel-aged version of the Funky’s Undefeated Saison, their ode to Miami Dolphins history. Tickets cost $99+ at at VLFoodWine.com.
Clown show: The annual Riverfront Circus returns to The Wharf Fort Lauderdale Thursday-Sunday with non-stop entertainment by a menagerie of clowns, mimes, magicians, dancers, stilt walkers, jugglers and acrobats. For those unnerved by clowns and/or mimes, daily drink specials include $5 Tito’s cocktails 4-7 p.m. Thursday; mules, mojitos and margaritas priced by the hour 4-7 p.m. Friday; $35 bottles of Côtes de Provence Rosé noon-4 p.m. Saturday; half-price mojito pitchers noon-4 p.m. Sunday. Admission is free. To RSVP a table, visit WharfFTL.com.
Weekend movies: The 26th annual Miami Jewish Film Festival returns on Thursday with an opening-night screening of the bittersweet comedy “Karaoke,” nominated for 13 Israeli Academy Awards, at the Miami Beach Bandshell. The film, starring Lior Ashkenazi and Sasson Gabay, follows a middle-class, suburban couple with a new neighbor, a charismatic bachelor from Miami who hosts karaoke gatherings at his apartment. The event will feature Gabay and director Moshe Rosenthal introducing the 7:30 p.m. screening and participating in a post-film Q&A. Opening-night tickets cost $36, $32 for seniors and students. The festival takes place through Jan. 26. Visit MiamiJewishFilmFestival.org.
Feherty on tour: Entertaining storyteller David Feherty, the former NBC Sports and Golf Channel analyst, brings his tour to the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. Will his brand of sniper-y irreverence sound the same from atop that bag of money from LIV Golf? Tickets start at $49+, with a meet-and-greet package for $189+. Visit Kravis.org.
Fair warning: On Thursday you still can get discounted tickets for the South Florida Fair, which opens on Friday for a run on the fairgrounds in West Palm Beach through Jan. 29. Advance discount one-day admission tickets cost $10 for ages 11 and older. When the fair opens on Friday, admission will cost $15 Monday-Friday, $20 Saturday and Sunday. Admission is free for ages 10 and younger. Also discounted through Thursday are $25 one-day unlimited-ride wristbands, which increase to $30 (good Monday-Friday) and $45 (Saturday and Sunday) once the fair opens. Beyond the obligatory Fried Snickers, look out for Elvis Presley tribute artist Matt Stone (the Wellington-raised performer took part in last weekend’s Elvis celebration in Fort Lauderdale) at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 23 on the fair’s Coca-Cola Stage. Visit SouthFloridaFair.com.
Friday concerts: For the record, Rebelution singer Eric Rachmany’s acoustic show Friday night at Fort Lauderdale’s Culture Room is sold out. … Long-running Sublime tribute band Badfish plays an all-ages show at the Miami Beach Bandshell at 7:30 p.m. Friday (with openers Kash’d Out and The Kaleidoscope Kid). Tickets start at $20+ at MiamiBeachBandshell.com. … Barry Manilow brings a rare one-off series of seven shows across the Southeast to FLA Live Arena in Sunrise at 7 p.m. Friday. Tickets start at $14.75+ (what, is this 1974?) at Ticketmaster.com.
Ticket window: Platinum-selling vocalist Sam Smith will open the tour supporting imminent album “Gloria” on July 25 at FTX Arena in MIami, with tickets scheduled to go on sale at 9 a.m. Friday at SamSmithWorld.com. … Tickets (starting at $155+) go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday via MyHRL.com for Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe at Hard Rock Live in Hollywood on March 12. A venue presale is available on the Hard Rock Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.
Feelin’ churro? With the new year, Tacocraft Taqueria & Tequila Bar (located in downtown Fort Lauderdale, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Plantation Walk and South Miami) has tweaked its happy hour and weekly menus. Catching my attention first was the brunch offering Chicken & Churros, a plank of crispy fried chicken on a large churro waffle, Mike’s Hot Honey and tequila-infused maple syrup ($18). I love multiculturalism. Brunch at Tacocraft is 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Visit Tacocraft.com.
Blasts from the past: Revolution Live in downtown Fort Lauderdale has filled its weekends this month with high-profile tribute bands, beginning Saturday with American Idiots (Green Day), Subliminal Doubt (Gwen Stefani and No Doubt) and Time Bombed (Rancid). Also on their way: The Pantera Experience with In a Nutshell (Alice in Chains) on Jan. 27, and on Jan. 28 Ordinary Boys, the tribute to The Smiths and Morrissey, joined by the Cure tribute Lovesong. Good times … Doors for these all-ages shows open at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15+. Visit JoinTheRevolution.net.
’Bidi Bidi Bom Bom’ brunch: Just when you think South Florida has run out of ideas comes the Selena Drag Brunch on Saturday at the Dania Improv in Dania Beach. Featuring Lips showstopper Crystal Ross LePaige and special guests, this song-and-dance tribute to the Latin music icon (audience costumes encouraged) has performances at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tickets cost $18 (yes, there’s two-drink minimum). Visit DaniaImprov.com.
Saturday night live: Who could have predicted that when the Mavericks leapt from the Miami punk scene in the late ‘80s that their expansive brand of country-fringed rock would remain so vital and fun more than 30 years later? The band — Raul Malo, Paul Deakin, Jerry Dale McFadden and Eddie Perez — performs at 8 p.m. Saturday at The Parker in Fort Lauderdale. Not many tickets left (starting at $65+) at Ticketmaster.com.
Central park: Beginning at noon, Picnic in the Park is a family-friendly VFLFW throwdown (BYO blanket/chairs), with curated food trucks, live entertainment, art vendors and culinary demonstrations (all ages), with a cocktail bar for adult kids. It’s free, but with a suggested donation of a new, unwrapped toy that will go to patients at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. … Nearby, beginning at 12:30 p.m. the LOOP will host The Perfect Pair, a wine-and-food pairing session led by certified sommelier Laura Winter Falk. Tickets cost $20+ at VLFoodWine.com.
Sake brunch: Also falling under the VFLFW umbrella but off the beach, Temple Street Eatery’s Chino Latino Brunch is at 11:30 a.m. Sunday at the popular downtown eatery. Chefs Alex Kuk and Diego Ng will serve five courses inspired by their distinctive fusion of influences paired with a selection of sake cocktails and beers. Tickets cost $99+ at VLFoodWine.com.
Auto magic: The culmination of a series of mostly VIP events across Palm Beach County, SuperCar Week will conclude on Sunday with a public display of some of the most distinctive cars in the world in a mile-long exhibition along South Flagler Drive on the West Palm Beach Waterfront. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and includes displays of Lamborghini, Ferrari, McLaren, Porsche, Bugatti, Pagani, Aston Martin, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Rolls Royce, Bentley, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lotus and other vehicles. Admission is free, with VIP accommodations also available. Visit SuperCarweek.com.
Classic cars: If your taste in motor vehicles runs toward the nostalgic, the 11th annual Cool Wheels Car Show will bring more than 1,000 antique roadsters, hot rods and muscle cars to Quiet Waters Park in Deerfield Beach 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. The event is a fundraiser for the Youth Automotive Training Center, created nearly 40 years ago by influential South Florida car dealer Jim Moran to help at-risk young people. Admission is free for spectators; Quiet Waters Park charges $1.50 per person for entry at the gate. Visit YATC.org.
MLK in harmony: The nonprofit Miami Jazz Cooperative hosts A Celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. at 8 p.m. Monday at Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Miami (7701 SW 76th Ave., about 3.5 miles southwest of the University of Miami). The evening of essays, poetry and music will feature a who’s-who lineup of local performers from across the spectrum of jazz, among them Nicole Henry, Maryel Epps, Jesse Jones Jr., Wendy Pedersen, Leesa Richards, Jean Caze, Eddy Balzola, John Yarling and Nicole Yarling. Tickets cost $20+ for general admission, $30+ for reserved seats. Visit MiamiJazz.org.