Busch Gardens Tampa Announces Concert Line-Up for 2017 Food & Wine Fest

Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival

The annual Food & Wine Festival returns to Busch Gardens Tampa weekends in March and April with great food, beverages, and live music.

The 2017 festival takes place on weekends from March 4 through April 30, and features signature dishes and exciting new cuisine – including duck tacos, lobster ravioli, bacon mac & cheese, brown sugar rubbed pork belly, banana foster panna cotta and cabernet-filled chocolates – as well as an expanded selection of wines, craft brews and cocktails.

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Central Florida Fair Returns to Orlando Mar 2-19, 2017

Central Florida Fair aerial view

Fun for the whole family, the annual Central Florida Fair returns to the Central Florida Fairgrounds in Orlando from March 2-19, 2017.

Every Wednesday through Sunday during the run, enjoy a midway featuring rides, games, and food, along with live music and entertainment, animals, STEM competitions and events, culinary competitions, and so much more.

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Downtown Food & Wine Fest Returns to Lake Eola Park in Orlando Feb 25-26

Downtown Food & Wine Fest Returns to Lake Eola Park in Orlando

The ninth annual Downtown Food & Wine Fest will take place in downtown Orlando at Lake Eola Park the weekend of February 25 and 26, 2017.

The two-day fest features mouth-watering dishes from some of Orlando’s premier restaurants, as well as domestic and international wines to sample.

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An Evening with Elayne Boosler Comes to Dr Phillips Center March 8

Dr Phillips Center Presents An Evening with Elayne Boosler March 8

Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts announces an evening of laughter and conversation with comedian/writer/animal activist Elayne Boosler on Wednesday, March 8, 2017.

Named one of Comedy Central’s “Greatest 100 Standup Comedians of All Time,” Boosler has amassed quite a resume over her 4 decades plus career, including many TV appearances and live comedy specials. This year, she will be featured in CNN’s eight-part documentary series, “The History of Standup Comedy.”

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Upcoming Central Florida Food Events for Early Spring 2017

Foodies – mark your calendars! There are a slew of food-centric events scheduled for the next few months, and they run the gamut from special dinners to theme park festivals:

As part of The COOP's Guest Chef Series, Chef John Rivers will be joined by Rusty Spoon's Chef Kathleen Blake on February 22.

As part of The COOP‘s Guest Chef Series, Chef John Rivers will be joined by Rusty Spoon’s Chef Kathleen Blake on February 22, for a cooking demo and tasting. The menu will feature Chef Blake’s Lake Meadow Chicken Thighs and Sticky Rice with Lemon Relish, and Chef Rivers’ Pecan Pie Bread Pudding.

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Out and About: Paddlefish Elevates Waterfront Dining at Disney Springs

Out and About: Paddlefish Elevates Waterfront Dining at Disney Springs

Paddlefish, a seafood-centric restaurant, is now open in The Landing at Disney Springs for your dining pleasure, and it’s definitely a don’t-miss place to eat.

Formerly known as Fulton’s Crab House, the restaurant has been completely revamped inside and out, taking on a contemporary interpretation of an elegant steamboat. The new design includes a variety of comfortable seating, large windows to enjoy the view of Disney Springs, and three floors for guests to enjoy, including a new rooftop deck on the third floor.

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Headlining Acts Announced for 2017 Garden Rocks Concert Series at Epcot

Jack Blades of Night Ranger - photo by M.Snow

One of the highlights of the annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is the Garden Rocks Concert Series, and we have the list of acts that will be appearing.

The festival will run March 1 through May 29, but the concerts will only be held Friday through Monday (which is one day more each week than previous years).

There are several new acts making their first appearance at the Garden Rocks concerts, including pop punk rockers Simple Plan, and 80s hitmaker Berlin featuring Terri Nunn. Mark your calendars, because here is the full schedule:

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Lady Gaga Brings Joanne World Tour to Amalie Arena in Tampa Dec 1, 2017

Lady Gaga Brings Joanne World Tour to Amalie Arena in Tampa Dec 1, 2017

Shortly after her Super Bowl appearance, Lady Gaga announced a new world tour that includes a Tampa show on December 1, 2017.

The Joanne World Tour is named after the entertainer’s recent 5th album, Joanne, which includes the hit singles “Perfect Illusion,” “Million Reasons,” along with my favorite song, “A-Yo.” Joanne debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200, marking her 4th consecutive #1 album – the first female to do so in the 2010s.

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138th Silver Spurs Rodeo Returns To Kissimmee Feb 17-19

Silver Spurs Rodeo at Silver Spurs Arena

Silver Spurs Rodeo is a family tradition in Kissimmee, and it returns to the Silver Spurs Arena for its 138th edition the weekend of Feb 17-19, 2017.

Silver Spurs Rodeo is the largest rodeo east of the Mississippi, and is the work of the Silver Spurs Riding Club, an all-volunteer organization started in 1941 by Osceola County ranchers. They began the rodeo in 1944, selling war bonds as admission to raise funds for our military.

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Rivers of Light to Open at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Feb 17, 2017

Rivers of Light to Open at Disney's Animal Kingdom Feb 17, 2017

The much anticipated Rivers of Light will finally debut at Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World on February 17, 2017.

Rivers of Light is a 15-minute show combining live performance, floating set pieces, a soaring musical score, fountains and more in a celebration of animals and nature on the Discovery River inside the park.

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Orlando Shakespeare Theater Presents Love’s Labour’s Lost Starting Feb 22, 2017

Orlando Shakespeare Theater Presents Love's Labour's Lost

Orlando Shakespeare Theater, in partnership with UCF, presents William Shakespeare’s comedy, Love’s Labour’s Lost, from February 22 – March 24, 2017.

Love’s Labour’s Lost follows the misadventures of the King of Navarre and his three companions as they attempt to forswear all pleasures in favor of serious study. But the Princess of France and her all-too-lovely entourage have other ideas.

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Osceola County Fair Returns to Kissimmee Feb 10-19, 2017

Osceola County Fair at night - photo by Carol Garreans

Fun for the whole family, the annual Osceola County Fair returns to Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, February 10-19, 2017.

Enjoy a midway featuring rides, games, and food, along with the Eudora Farms Petting Zoo, live music and entertainment, animals, and so much more.

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Orlando Shakespeare Theater Presents The Great Gatsby Starting Feb 8, 2017

Orlando Shakes - The Great Gatsby cast

Orlando Shakespeare Theater, in partnership with UCF, presents F. Scott Fitzgerald’s literary masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, from February 8 – March 26, 2017

When Nick Carraway is befriended by his mysterious neighbor, Jay Gatsby, he is drawn into a glitzy world of lavish parties and secret speakeasies. But as Gatsby’s elusive past is uncovered and his intentions revealed, Nick finds himself a pawn in a love triangle so scandalous, it threatens to destroy all those around him.

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Out and About: Chroma Modern Bar + Kitchen Elevates Small Plates Menu

Chroma Modern Bar + Kitchen in Lake Nona

If you’re a foodie, Chroma Modern Bar + Kitchen has been on your radar. If it isn’t, let me tell you why it should be on your list.

We visited Chroma, which is located in Lake Nona, for dinner on a Thursday night, and after seating us, the server told us the restaurant offers small plates to share, and he recommended ordering 2-3 dishes per person.

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