2015 Florida Film Festival Includes Several Food Events

In addition to the wonderful program of films, the 2015 Florida Film Festival will include several food-centric events during its run.

Locally Fresh!

On Saturday, April 11, from 11am to 12:30pm, the FFF will host a Locally Fresh! event featuring samples and live cooking demonstrations of local eats, along with a sneak peek into the world of farming. Featured participants include Lake Meadow Natural Farms, Palmetto Creek Farms, Olde Hearth Bread Co., and East End Market. Tickets are $12, and the event takes place at Enzian.

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Jimmy Fallon Gets Five New Wax Figures Including One Coming to Madam Tussauds Orlando #MTFallonGetsWaxed

To mark his one year anniversary as host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show,” Jimmy Fallon joined Madame Tussauds at their New York attraction for a special launch of five brand new, never-before-seen wax figures of the popular funnyman.

Jimmy Fallon and his five Madame Tussauds wax figures. Photos courtesy of Madame Tussauds

Jimmy Fallon and his five Madame Tussauds wax figures. Photos courtesy of Madame Tussauds

One of those five will be making their way down to the Sunshine State, to reside in Madame Tussauds new Orlando location at I-Drive 360.

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Enter to Win a $50 Gift Certificate for Spring Shopping at Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores #lbvfs #springdeals

It’s Spring in Florida, which means it’s time to start thinking about getting clothes to help you enjoy the warmer weather. To do that and save money, head to the Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores.

Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores

At the Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores, you can find factory-direct premium quality merchandise by brand names, at savings of up to 75% off (and sometimes more). There’s easy store front parking, too, which makes getting in and out easy.

To add to the savings, the mall will be holding a sidewalk sale the weekend of April 10-12, where stores will have merchandise at extra savings.

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Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto Soft Opens at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort March 28

Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto, a version of fan favorite at Disneyland, is soft opening at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort March 28.

Trader Sam's Grog Grotto at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort

It is located off the main lobby, with the adjacent Trader Sam’s Tiki Terrace offering views of the marina and Seven Seas Lagoon.

While Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto shares some similarities with the original, including some signature drinks and small plates, Beverage Manager Brad Ward, Chef Lenny DeGeorge, and the Concept Development team have created new menu items just for the Walt Disney World location.

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Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High to Open at SeaWorld Orlando April 16, 2015

SeaWorld Orlando has announced April 16 as the opening date for the new show “Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High.”

Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High SeaWorld Orlando

The show takes place in an aquatic-themed high school. The dynamic duo of Clyde and Seamore are nominated to win scholarships to Ocean University…but first they must enter crash courses in science, dance and gym in a storyline that is full of fast-paced fun.

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American Heart Association Hosts National Walking Day April 1 at Lake Eola Park #LaceUpOrlando

In an effort to get Central Florida healthier, the American Heart Association of Greater Orlando is hosting National Walking Day on April 1 at noon.

American Heart Association of Greater Orlando - National Walking Day

These days, we’re spending more time at work and sitting in front of a screen than ever before. We’re becoming less active, which can increase our risk of heart disease, stroke and other diseases.

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Crayola Experience at Florida Mall Close to Opening with Main Signage Now Up

The Crayola Experience at Florida Mall will be opening this summer, and they’ve now got the main signage up on the building.

Crayola Experience at Florida Mall At Crayola Experience Orlando, families will enjoy many of the brand’s signature attractions – such as “Wrap it Up!” where you can name and wrap an authentic Crayola crayon and “Be a Star,” where you can star in your very own coloring page – as well as some exciting new attractions that will debut in Orlando.

The attraction also will have a retail store where guests will discover hundreds of unique Crayola products and souvenirs only found at Crayola Experience.

This will be the second retail experience store for Crayola. We’ll let you know as soon as we discover an opening date.

Cowgirls Rockbar Orlando Readying for May Opening at I-Drive 360 with Job Fair April 2-4, 2015

Cowgirls Rockbar Orlando will be bringing a taste of country to the I-Drive 360 complex when it opens in May. But to get open, they need to find a staff.

Cowgirls Rockbar Orlando

To do this, they’re olding a job fair on April 2, 3 and 4 from 2pm – 7pm each day.

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Legendary Bachata Superstar Juan Luis Guerra to Play Amway Center September 13, 2015

Dominican singer-songwriter Juan Luis Guerra is bringing his Cookies and Cream tour (named after a song on his album) to Orlando for a show at the Amway Center on Friday, September 13.

Juan Luis Guerra

Guerra is touring in support of his latest album, “Todo Tiene Su Hora,” which hit #1 on the Billboard Latin charts. The album includes the hit single “Tus Besos,” which has a retro feel, and the song, “Cookies and Cream,” which talks about social issues in the Dominican Republic.

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First Look Artist Rendering of Mango’s Tropical Cafe Orlando

Last summer, we told you that Mango’s Tropical Cafe Orlando would be opening on International Drive. This week, we have a first glimpse at the interior, courtesy of an artist rendering provided by Mango’s COO Joshua Wallack.

Mango's Tropical Cafe Orlando

The rendering is of the main bar areas and show floor where Mango’s dancers will perform for guests in the evening. If it’s anything like the original Mango’s Tropical Cafe in South Beach Miami, they’ll even be dancing on top of the bars.

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Brushfire Stankgrass Brings their Grass Powered Boogie to Will’s Pub March 30, 2015

Layer a bluegrass sound over a jazz groove, and you have North Carolina’s Brushfire Stankgrass, who will be playing Orlando at Will’s Pub on March 30.

Brushfire Stankgrass L to R: Ben Saylor; Danny Iannucci; Micah Thomas; Will Saylor. Photo credit: Phil Delliveniri philandkristen.com

L to R: Ben Saylor; Danny Iannucci; Micah Thomas; Will Saylor. Photo credit: Phil Delliveniri philandkristen.com

On their website, they call it Grass Powered Boogie, but it can also be called Modern Mountain Fusion, and it’s winning over a lot of bluegrass/newgrass buffs.

The two founding members (Ben and Will Saylor, banjo and guitar) are brothers who have been playing music together since the age of three. Together with a rhythm section comprised of Micah Thomas on drums and Daniel Iannucci on bass (both are seasoned and well known Asheville musicians), the group’s chemistry and unique sound has clicked with a lot of music lovers.

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American Gymkhana and Cress Collaborate for New Flavor Farm Series Dinner April 3, 2015

The culinary forces behind Central Florida restaurants American Gymkhana and Cress will collaborate once again on a Flavor Farm Series Dinner on Friday, April 3.

Flavor Farm Series dinner featuring Chefs Hari Pulapaka and Aarthi Sampath.

Four-time James Beard-nominated Chef Hari Pulapaka is the creative mind behind the menu at Cress Restaurant in Deland. Chef Aarthi Sampath is the amazing chef behind the creations at American Gymkhana restaurant in Dr. Phillips.

Together, the two chefs will team up to create a unique tasting menu highlighting some of Florida’s best local ingredients, while celebrating their Indian culture. They will be joined by American Gymkhana mixologist Hemant Pathak and Jenneffer Pulapaka from Cress, who will do the cocktail and wine pairings.

The 5 course tasting menu is $75 per person, $110 with the wine or cocktail pairing. Both come with a mini-cocktail hour, and include tax/gratuity. There are two seatings, at 6:30pm and 8:30pm.

For more information, or to purchase your seat at this exclusive dinner, visit the event’s Eventbrite ticket page.

American Gymkhana is located at 7559 W. Sandlake Rd. Visit their website at americangymkhana.com.

Florida Film Festival Presents An Evening with Sam Rockwell April 17, 2015

One of the special events to be held during the 2015 edition of the Florida Film Festival is An Evening with Sam Rockwell on Friday, April 17.

Sam Rockwell in Moon

Sam Rockwell in Moon

Rockwell has amassed a healthy list of movie credits ranging from “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind” and “The Way, Way Back” to “Iron Man 2″ and “Choke.”

The event will include a showing of Rockwell’s film, “Moon,” which is one of the most acclaimed science-fiction films, and winner of 22 international film awards.

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Hard Rock Cafe Orlando at Universal CityWalk Offering Limited Time Rebel Burger

Hard Rock Cafes are starting a year-long limited-time burger and beer pairing, and the first one is the Rebel Legendary Burger, which will be paired with Samuel Adams Rebel IPA.

Hard Rock Cafes Rebel Legendary Burger Samuel Adams Rebel IPA.The Rebel Legendary Burger is handcrafted with a half-pound Certified Angus Beef® patty, brushed with Rebel IPA barbecue glaze and topped with picadillo meat, Monterey jack cheese, baby arugula, a tomato slice drizzled with balsamic glaze and crispy onions.

The limited-edition Rebel Legendary Burger and Samuel Adams Rebel IPA duet will be served with Hard Rock’s seasoned fries and a side of house-made Rebel IPA barbecue sauce.

It will be available at HR cafes around the nation, including the Hard Rock Cafe Orlando at Universal CityWalk, through Thursday, April, 30, 2015. For more information, visit hardrock.com.

Bill Engvall and Alan Jackson Headline Bands, Brew & BBQ at SeaWorld Orlando March 28-29, 2015

For the final weekend of this year’s Bands, Brew & BBQ event, SeaWorld Orlando has comedian Bill Engvall on Saturday, March 28, and country legend Alan Jackson on Sunday, March 29, serving up the entertainment.

Bill Engvall and Alan Jackson Headline Bands, Brew & BBQ at SeaWorld Orlando

Bands, Brew & BBQ features live concerts from top classic rock and country bands and artists, the tastiest BBQ from Central Florida’s top local smokehouses, plus SeaWorld’s own Sweet & Smokin’ Barbecue. This event is presented in partnership with USO of Central Florida, an organization that has been lifting the spirits of America’s troops and their families over 70 years.

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