Boca Raton Magazine the Leader.enArtArts & EventsBarsBeautyBest Of BocaCity WatchCommunityDebate WatchDelray BeachDelray BeachDiningFashionFitnessGiveawaysHealth NewsHealth/BeautyHot DealsIn The MagazineMoviesMusicNewsNews & ReviewsOpinionsProfilesRecipes Restaurant ReviewsShoppingShopping NewsStyle PagesThe Week AheadTheatreTown NewsTravel Upcoming EventsWeb ExtrasFri, 29 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000Meal Deals for Hungry Locals<p><img alt="" height="456" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/meatmkt.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>It’s that time of year when snowbirds have flown back to their formerly frigid locales and area restaurateurs start offering deals to lure locals into their eateries.</p> <p>At Palm Beach’s swanky <a href="" target="_blank">Meat Market</a> (<em>191 Bradley Place, 561/354-9800</em>) they’ve dialed up something called Signature Steak Sunday, the chance to dig into either a half or full-sized portion of 16-ounce Prime New York steak, 12-ounce filet mignon or 16-ounce Prime ribeye, which you can dress up with anything from blue crab and bearnaise to seared foie gras. There’s also a daily happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. with $10 glasses of Veuve Clicquot Brut, $7 signature cocktails and munchies like Kobe beef sliders with bacon and gouda and a daily ceviche.</p> <p>At <a href="" target="_blank">Apeiro</a> (<em>14917 Lyons Road, Delray Beach, 561/501-4443</em>), the modern Mediterranean eatery in the Delray Market complex, they’re offering a three-course, $20 prix fixe dinner menu Monday through Thursday. Chef David Blonsky will be trotting out dishes like mussels with saffron cream and crostini, spiced lamb kabobs, branzino filet with aqua pazza sauce and herb oil, and a selection of house-made gelati. They’re also extending their happy hour from 4 p.m. to closing Sunday through Thursday for anyone who orders an entree at the bar, which means good deals on selected beers, wines and cocktails.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 29 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningHot DealsNews & ReviewsIt&#39;s Official! The 2015 Boca Ballroom Battle is off and running!<p><img alt="" height="525" src="/site_media/uploads/ballroom-battle.jpg" width="300"></p> <p>So last night was the kick-off for this year’s Boca Ballroom Battle at M.EA.T Eatery &amp; Taproom at Cendyn, hosted by Charles and Robin Deyo. This is the evening that sponsors and former dancers and this year’s dancers all meet and mingle, undoubtedly sharing war stories from years past, encouraging the new class of 2015 to forge on, practice, and have fun.</p> <p>It’s the night that the upcoming Boca Ballroom Battle on Friday, August 28, 2015, at 6:00 p.m. becomes real for the dancers. In a little over two months they will be swirling and twirling and dazzling a crowd of 700 or 800 of us at the Resort as we crowd into the best party of the summer, and cheer on our favorites. That’s one more reason to love summer—at least for me—as I remember my year dancing. How scared I was, and how much fun it was at the same time. My dancing shoes may be tucked away now at the top of my closet, but sometimes I think I hear them talking to me, telling me to straighten up, point that toe, lift that chin and let the music do the rest. </p> <p>My shoes might be telling me how to dance, but they have no idea how important the dancing really is, and how much it benefits underserved kids who dream of going to college—despite what may seem like insurmountable odds. Last year, the Boca Ballroom Battle raised $224,000. Last year, The George Snow Scholarship Fund clocked in at $637,000 and sent 84 kids to college.</p> <p>I hear almost all the sponsorships are gone, and the tables will be next—get yours now by calling 561/347-6799 or visit</p> <p>And onward, you brave 2015 dancers (listed below)! We are cheering you on!</p> <p>Brian Altschuler, Executive Director of Human Resources, Boca Raton Regional Hospital</p> <p>Peg Anderson Greenspon, volunteer extraordinaire</p> <p>Elias Janetis, founder, MobileHelp</p> <p>Frank McKinney, real estate developer and bestselling author</p> <p>Holly Meehan, photographer, volunteer</p> <p>Chris Nichols, Founder and CEO, Nichols Wealth Partners</p> <p>Donna Parlapiano, Senior Vice President, Franchise Operations &amp; Corporate Real Estate, AutoNation, Inc.</p> <p>Wendy Sadusky, designing housewife</p> <p> </p>Marie SpeedThu, 28 May 2015 14:58:00 +0000 approval, Boca Watch, Auburn Trace and that very Special Session<h3><img alt="" height="338" src="/site_media/uploads/fl-boca-raton-chabad-city-council-20150410-1.jpg" width="450"></h3> <h3>The Chabad discussion</h3> <p>At 10:30 Wednesday night, many of the people in the Boca Raton City Council chambers were ready to kiss Councilman Mike Mullaugh.</p> <p>The council was four-plus hours into a hearing on the Chabad East Boca project. Speaker after speaker on both sides had said pretty much the same thing over and over—sometimes after beginning by saying that he or she agreed with what someone else had said. To steal from a review of the 1959 movie “Ben-Hur,” it was like being stuck at a railroad crossing while a long freight train trundled past. City staffers were fading. The three police officers were fading. You could see which way the vote was going to go. Finish it.</p> <p>After that interminable public comment period and a short break, Mayor Susan Haynie called for council comment on a motion to approve the added height—from 30 feet to 40 feet—for one part of the project, which will include a synagogue, a museum and a social hall. Mullaugh said, “I have heard no testimony, let alone evidence, that (the extra height) will injure” the surrounding neighborhoods on East Palmetto Park Road. Mullaugh pronounced himself ready to vote for approval. He had it right. Even better, he had it right in about 30 seconds.</p> <p>The council got there, voting 4-1 in favor—Jeremy Rodgers dissenting—but not before almost another hour had passed. Not before the council had attached more, mostly symbolic conditions to many conditions already attached to the approval. Not before more tortured discussion of legal fine points. Not before the council—mainly Scott Singer—tried to assure the often-unreasonable opponents that while council members understood their objections, the zoning rules gave them little choice.</p> <p>Naturally, given this drawn-out drama, Wednesday night’s decision likely isn’t the last one. As discussion started, City Attorney Diana Grub Frieser informed the council that the opponents—residents of the Riviera and Por La Mar neighborhoods—had appealed the Planning and Zoning Board’s May 7 approval of Chabad East Boca’s site plan. If the city determines that the appeal is reasonable, the site plan will go before the council, probably in July. You can assume that the city will find the appeal reasonable, if only to show that the city gave the opponents every possible chance.</p> <p>According to long-timers at City Hall, even such emotional issues as Boca Teeca in 2007—still unresolved—and Ocean Strand didn’t bring out the crowds Chabad East Boca has. For the congregation, there’s history here.</p> <p>Seeking a larger facility than the current one near Sanborn Square, the chabad first considered a site on Mizner Boulevard between St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church and First United Methodist Church. But neighbors in the Golden Triangle objected, and the council thwarted the chabad with new rules on parking.</p> <p>So now the congregation wants to build where the rules allow places of worship and allow the extra height under conditions to which Chabad East Boca has agreed. Rabbi Ruvi New, the congregation’s leader, referenced anti-Semitism only indirectly when he addressed the Planning and Zoning Board. Speaking to Boca Raton’s elected leaders, he was far less subtle.</p> <p>“At the dawn of time itself,” New began, using the story of Cain and Abel to illustrate the concept of “not in my backyard.” It was that kind of night.</p> <p>In 2008, New said, the cry had been “Save Our Neighborhood. From what?” New, of course, was asking rhetorically. In 2015, the rabbi continued, the cry is “Save Boca Beaches,” referring to the opponents’ website. “We are deeply offended by the notion that this city needs to be saved from what it is we will bring.”</p> <p>One critic, New recalled, objected because Boca Raton needs to look more like Aspen. New produced a slide of the new Aspen Chabad, which is about 22,000 square feet larger than what Chabad East Boca proposes. “We are sick and tired of being kicked around,” New told the council. “The law must prevail.”</p> <p>Then the opponents started in, and many of them made the chabad’s case by how badly they made theirs.</p> <p>Under city rules, the applicant and the organized opposition had 20 minutes to make their cases. One neighborhood leader wasted almost 10 of his 20 minutes arguing for 30 minutes. (His side eventually did get extra time.) He argued that the council should postpone its vote because the opponents hadn’t been aware that Wednesday was a vote only the height. Yet the council had delayed its vote by several weeks already, after opponents raised a technical point the first time around.</p> <p>Critics said the council had “ignored your own ordinances” and “turned a blind eye to the code.” Wrong on both counts. Another said “the legacy” of Boca Raton’s “pristine beaches has been passed to you.” How does a place of worship threaten the beach? Another said the project had been “cloaked in secrecy.” Right. At multiple public hearings. Still another said approval would turn the beach district into “another Miami Beach.” Then there was the opponent who said he could understand why Chabad East Boca wanted to expand, since Boca Raton “is 50 percent Jewish.” Later came the guy who advised everyone that despite his long beard, he isn’t Jewish. “More of a ZZ Top look.” He backed the project.</p> <p>The key point actually had come early, when City Traffic Engineer Doug Hess said the additional 10 feet for the museum/exhibit hall would have no effect on traffic. His testimony undercut all the complaints about traffic, some of which had nothing to do with the chabad and which were not at issue before the council. Nevertheless, Rabbi New agreed that he wouldn’t try to add a nosebleed section that might draw a few more visitors.</p> <p>The only credible point from the opponents was that while Boca Raton has granted added height to other houses of worship, they are on larger sites. Chabad East Boca wants to build on 0.8 acres. But that’s also why the approval comes with so many conditions.</p> <p>You could tell that the opponents are preparing for a lawsuit. They trotted out a lawyer, a planner and a traffic engineer. They had court reporters. Since the city code prohibits the added height unless it is “injurious” to the area, opponents spoke of “injury” and “being injured.”</p> <p>If Chabad East Boca loses, however, the congregation most definitely will sue. Boca Raton’s legal position will be much stronger if it is defending a lawsuit from the opponents, not Chabad East Boca.</p> <h3>And that long winded problem                                  </h3> <p>As Wednesday night’s hearing showed, Boca Raton should change its rules on public comment.</p> <p>The city allows speakers a generous five minutes. Many other cities allow three minutes. The added time might not seem like much, but when 50 speakers show up, you’ve added 100 minutes of comment—without adding any content to the debate.</p> <p>If people can’t make their point in three minutes, the point isn’t worth making. Abraham Lincoln made a lasting point at Gettysburg in 1863, and he did so in less than three minutes. Despite what some speakers believe, telling the council that they’ve lived in Boca for 40 years or run a business up North doesn’t give them any more standing. As noted, any organized opposition gets 20 minutes to make its case. Assume that the council members are judges. Good lawyers know that concise arguments beat long-winded arguments. Democracy in Boca Raton won’t suffer if speakers have three-minute limits.</p> <h3>Boca Watch</h3> <p>Al Zucaro, who operates the Boca Watch blog, has filed ethics complaints against Deputy City Manager George Brown and Councilman Robert Weinroth after the city council appointed them this month to the board of the Boca Raton Airport Authority.</p> <p>Zucaro notified the city of the complaints to the Florida Commission on Ethics. He appeared at Wednesday night’s council meeting to argue that Brown and Weinroth should pay for their own legal defense. At the recommendation of City Attorney Diana Grub Frieser, the council correctly hired a law firm to represent Brown and Weinroth. I’ve never known of a city that didn’t pay the legal fees in such cases when the charges are related to the work of elected and unelected officials. Otherwise, critics could bleed them with such charges.</p> <p>The appointments, though, continue to generate controversy as a policy move. I will have more next week.</p> <h3>Auburn Trace update</h3> <p>According to Mayor Cary Glickstein, Delray Beach remains on track to close Friday on the purchase of the first mortgage for the Auburn Trace housing project.</p> <p>The developer, Auburn Trace Ltd., is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. The city holds the second mortgage, having given up its first position years ago. That was a mistake by a previous commission; the developer wanted to obtain more financing. Delray gave Auburn Trace a nearly $4 million loan in 1988. Payments stopped a long time back. With interest and principal, the loan is worth about $4.5 million.</p> <p>By purchasing the first mortgage from Iberiabank, which has foreclosed on the property, Delray can better protect its investment and can try to find a new company to take over and manage Auburn Trace, which needs improvements. The city, Glickstein said, “will begin marketing in earnest after the closing.”</p> <h3>Special session</h3> <p>The Florida Legislature will come back in special session starting Monday. Though the main issue is the budget— they ended the regular session early without passing one— the issue driving the budget is health care.</p> <p>The Senate wants to expand Medicaid, Florida-style, and cover another 800,000-plus Floridians in addition to the 1.6 million who have obtained coverage through the Affordable Care Act. Gov. Rick Scott and the House oppose that plan. Everyone, though, worries about how much federal money Florida will receive for the 2016 fiscal year—it begins July 1—for coverage of the state’s uninsured population. To agree on a budget, the House and Senate must agree on that number.</p> <p>Getting health coverage for more Floridians would help the state. So would having healthier Floridians, since they would need less medical care. Some new reports look at both topics.</p> <p>Gallup Healthways just released its latest report on America and obesity. Not surprisingly, the survey ranked Hawaii and Colorado as having the lowest rates of obese people, which the organization defines as someone with a Body Mass Index of 30 or above. In Hawaii, they’re all surfing. In Colorado, they’re all rock-climbing.</p> <p>Florida ranked 15<sup>th</sup> lowest, which I found encouraging until I read that New Jersey—where the porcine Chris Christie is governor—ranked 16<sup>th</sup>. Still, we’re a long way from the perpetual bottom-dwelling Arkansas, Louisiana, West Virginia and Mississippi. South Florida—Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties—did even better, ranking 15-lowest among 100 metropolitan areas. The Sarasota-Bradenton area ranked eighth, with Fort Myers-Cape Coral ranking ninth.</p> <p>The rankings matter because obesity leads to so many other health problems, notably diabetes. Nationally, Gallup Healthways found, obesity is at a record high—27.4 percent. The Brookings Institution recently calculated that if all the Americans under 18 who are obese now stay that way, the cost to society could be $1.1 trillion. Florida parents, get your kids off their smart phones—at least for a couple of hours.</p> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong>Randy Schultz</strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald </em><em>and </em><em>Palm Beach Post</em><em>, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post</em><em>. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p> <p> </p>Marie SpeedThu, 28 May 2015 12:51:00 +0000 WatchSeasonal Finds: Key West Pink Shrimp<p><img alt="" height="364" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/shrimp_cilantro.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Shrimp is a staple on my dinner table in the spring as the weather heats up and my body craves lean proteins.  Wild-caught pink shrimp are local to the Florida Keys and are most abundant during the spring months.  In many cases these shrimp are available at the local market just a day after being plucked from the ocean, ensuring the freshest possible product for you and your family.  Florida-raised shrimp can be found at stores across Boca Raton—from Whole Foods and Fresh Market to the local seafood market like Old Dixie Seafood.</p> <p>I have always felt that freshly fished seafood offers an unmatched quality and flavor in comparison to product that has been frozen for weeks or even months before consumption.  Pink Shrimp are known for their sweet, tender meat.  In having the convenient option to buy local shrimp harvested from the pristine waters of the Florida Keys—South Floridian’s have little excuse to buy frozen.</p> <p><em>Here’s a fun fact: nearly 85 percent of the pink shrimp harvested in the United States comes from Florida.  </em></p> <p>Key West Pink Shrimp have a beautiful pink color and they turn opaque after cooking.  Their shell color is a product of the coral sand in which they live.  Key West pinks are easy to distinguish as they have a bright pink color when raw, unlike other shrimp varieties whose colors range from brown, grey, or a dull translucent pink. </p> <p>In my recipe below you will find a classic sautéed shrimp with a kick of garlic and cilantro that amplify the sweet shrimp meat.  Trying adding these shrimp to salad, pasta, risotto, or just enjoy them plain—just don’t forget the fresh lemon slices! </p> <p><strong>Sautéed Pink Shrimp with Garlic and Cilantro</strong></p> <p><strong>Ingredients</strong></p> <p>1 tbsp. olive oil</p> <p>2 garlic cloves, finely diced</p> <p>1-pound Key West pink shrimp, peeled and deveined</p> <p>½ teaspoon crushed red pepper</p> <p>Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste</p> <p>2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice</p> <p>¼ cup loosely packed cilantro leaves</p> <p>Lemon wedges for serving</p> <p><strong>Directions</strong></p> <p>1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add garlic, and cook until soft but not browned, 1-2 minutes.  Add shrimp, red-pepper flakes, salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring frequently, until shrimp are bright pink and opaque, about 3 minutes.</p> <p>2. Add lemon juice and cilantro leaves.  Continue cooking until most of the liquid has evaporated.  Remove from heat; season with salt and pepper.  Serve warm with lemon wedges on the side. </p>Amanda JaneThu, 28 May 2015 07:00:00 +0000 Movie Review: &quot;In the Name of My Daughter&quot;<p>In “In the Name of My Daughter,” the latest import from major French director Andre Techine, all the elements are in place for a great true-crime opus. In the mid-1970s, struggling casino executive Renee Le Roux (Catherine Deneuve) is being threatened by a rival magnate with mafia ties, who aims to level her business and its 350 employees.</p> <p>Renee has some help in her corner, or so she thinks, in the form of Maurice Agnelet (Guillaume Canet), an obsequious lawyer and “adviser” with intentions to shoehorn himself into her casino operation, should she keep the business. Complicating matters further is Renee’s aloof daughter Agnes (Adele Haenel), returning home after surviving a divorce, hoping to cash in her shares of the casino at a time when Renee isn’t ready or able to let them go. Meanwhile, she finds herself drawn too much to the shadowy, charismatic Maurice, launching an affair that ends in a tragic question mark that remains, to this day, unanswered.</p> <p><img alt="" height="255" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/nameofmydaughter2.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Put three characters with opposing motivations in an environment this combustible—with the twin motivators of money and love picking through the ashes like vultures—and you’ve got an inherently compelling story. Thanks to powerful performances from its leads, Techine draws considerable traction from the case, which made national headlines in its day. Deneuve is usually sequestered in supporting roles of benign grandmas these days, but here she’s as elegant and commanding as she’s ever been.</p> <p>Haenel, though, who is regularly nominated for Cesar Awards in her native country, is the real standout here. Whether it’s engaging in an impromptu bit of African dance at Maurice’s behest, breaking in the bed at her new apartment with some uninhibited pogoing, or plunging deep into the waters of her local beach, she’s the very picture of reckless abandon. An adult with a child’s mindset, she’s the rapacious and unpredictable cog in the plans of both Renee and Maurice, and her portrayal is unflinching in its doomed conviction.</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/cb8ee17c38178d501f0da57f64a9a52f_cannes-2014_1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Handsome and well constructed as the film is, however, it’s also exhaustingly talky and too low-key for its own good. It’s paced with the careful, patient dryness of filmed legal documents and transcripts (it’s based in fact on Renee’s memoir), not with the enveloping, pulse-quickening progression a thriller. An ill-advised courtroom denouement of sorts, set in 2005, reveals less about the lingering tragedy of the previous 93 minutes than it does the ghastly, unconvincing job of Techine’s makeup department. The story finally peters to an anticlimax followed by a lengthy postscript of information too complicated to skip over so blithely.</p> <p>By shining a pitiless spotlight on a 30-year-old scandal, In the Name of My Daughter is a worthy entry in the true-crime cinematic lexicon. But for American audiences unfamiliar with the case, a basic Google search may yield a more elucidating account. Techine has produced far wiser films about the human condition when he’s written them himself, but see this one for the performances and you won’t be disappointed.</p> <p><em>"In the Name of My Daughter" opens Friday at Living Room Theaters and Regal Shadowood 16 in Boca Raton, Movies of Delray, Movies of Lake Worth, The Classic Gateway Theater in Fort Lauderdale, Cinema Paradiso in Hollywood, and the Cosford Cinema in Coral Gables.</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 27 May 2015 12:45:50 +0000 & EventsMoviesResearch shows personality matters<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Florida Atlantic University researchers are looking into answering the fundamental questions of why people behave and feel the way they do.</p> <p>Researchers in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science in Boca Raton were among those who measured real-world effects of situations on human behavior. By studying 208 FAU students, their personalities and how they responded to various situations, researchers showed that personality predicts behavior.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/fausocialbehavior.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>“For decades, social scientists have theorized that human behavior is a function of the things inside of us — our personality — and the things outside of us — situations,” Ryne Sherman, Ph.D., an FAU assistant professor of psychology, said in a press release. “Until now, looking at both factors simultaneously has been hard to do outside the laboratory in a real-world setting.”</p> <p>In the study’s first phase, Sherman and colleagues used a tool called the HEXACO-60 to measure the broadest dimensions of personality: honesty-humility, emotionality, extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness and openness to experience. For descriptions of those personality dimensions, visit <a href=""></a>.</p> <p>“One would assume that if a person is honest and humble, then his or her usual response to a situation would be behavior that is honest and humble,” Sherman said in the press release. “And in the same way, if a person is extraverted then we would expect his or her behavior to be outgoing and sociable in situations.”</p> <p>Students in the study received eight text messages a day, for seven days. The messages helped to gauge their reactions to different situations at that moment. Students rated each situation indicating what they experienced and how they were feeling.</p> <p>“The key finding in our study is that our personalities and the situations we encounter predict our behavior independently and simultaneously at any given moment,” Sherman said.</p> <p>I asked Sherman a few questions about how we can take his research and apply it to our lives. Here’s what he had to say:</p> <p><em>Fit Life: Can readers better predict how they or their loved ones or coworkers might respond in any given situation? </em></p> <p>Sherman: Yes. Our study shows that personality does a good job of predicting how a person will typically behave in general across many moments in time, which is really important. At the same time, our study also shows that the characteristics of situations predict how a typical person will behave in a given moment in time. Taken together, this means that predicting how a particular person will behave in a particular moment in time requires (at least!) (a) knowing something about the person (i.e., his or her personality) and (b) knowing something about his or her situation.</p> <p><em>Fit Life: Does your research suggest that even a person whose personality is defined by honesty and humility can be deceptive in a situation? </em></p> <p>Sherman: Absolutely. One way to think about it is that your personality is your baseline -- how you typically behave. Everyone has a different baseline, but as people go about their day, they run into different situations that push and pull them away from their baseline. On average, we see that people behave like their baselines (i.e., their personalities), but at any given moment, situations can force a person away from his or her baseline.</p> <p>For those who want to know more, this study was published online April 27 in the <em>Journal of Personality and Social Psychology</em>. You can read the study’s abstract by <a href="">clicking here</a>.</p>Lisette HiltonWed, 27 May 2015 08:00:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyCan you tell this Boca Mom how to get to Sesame Street?<p>Sunny day, sweepin’ the clouds away, on my way to where the air is sweet! And right now, the summer air is sweetest at the <a href="" target="_blank">Museum of Discovery &amp; Science</a> in Fort Lauderdale. This is where you’ll find friendly neighbors – and the brand-new <a href="" target="_blank">Sesame Street Presents: The Body</a> exhibit on display until Sept. 8.</p> <p align="center"> <img alt="" height="493" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/2015-05-22_14.32.25.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The <em>Sesame Street</em> Muppets exhibit presents an exciting collection of hands-on, interactive multimedia experiences that allow your kids to explore the human body and how to keep it healthy.  Each area has multiple activities that provide age-appropriate and exciting learning opportunities for children at a variety of developmental levels. And most importantly: it’s air-conditioned.</p> <p>I always find it a little suspicious when I (potentially) have more fun than my own child at a kids’ event or museum. But, that’s exactly what happened when we attended the exhibit’s opening day.</p> <p>IT’S REALLY SESAME STREET!!!</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/2015-05-22_14.29.40.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p>That’s what I screamed in my head (or maybe out loud) when I saw the interactive <em>Sesame Street</em> set. Yes, <em>Oscar’s</em> trash can makes noise. The buzzers at the front door buzz. Some Muppets even greet visitors through the speaker!</p> <p>My daughter on the other hand was most excited about the <strong>Elmo’s World</strong> interactive play station. Here, younger kids can learn how to tie their shoes, visit Dorothy (<em>Elmo’s</em> pet fish) and dress <em>Elmo</em> up in various outfits on his magnetic wall. Our toddlers didn’t want to leave.</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/2015-05-22_14.12.01.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p>But, there was so much more to see at <a href="" target="_blank">Sesame Street Presents: The Body</a>. Children of all ages have the opportunity to learn about their organs at <em>The Count’s</em> musical organ. They can practice hand washing and tooth brushing at <em>Ernie’s</em> Rub-a-Dub Tub. They can even learn about the complete process of digestion with <em>Oscar the Grouch.</em></p> <p align="center"><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/2015-05-22_14.25.47.jpg" width="490">  </p> <p>It was a fantastic exhibit. My expectations were exceeded and all three kids we brought napped hard on the drive home. I’m glad that this Boca Mom found her way to <em>Sesame Street. </em></p> <p>The Museum of Discovery &amp; Science is located at <em>401 S.W. Second St., Fort Lauderdale // 954/467-0046</em>.</p> <p><strong>Admission Prices</strong></p> <p>Adults: $14.00<br> Seniors: $13.00<br> Child (2-12): $12.00<br> Child (1 &amp; under): No charge</p> <p>*IMAX shows and special rides are an extra fee</p> <p>Visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a> for more information.</p> <p><em>This exhibit is a result of Sesame Workshop’s initiative, Healthy Habits for Life, created in response to the current childhood obesity crisis in the United States. Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, and Thinkwell Design &amp; Production of Burbank, CA created this interactive experience that is locally sponsored by PNC Bank. </em><em></em></p> <p><em>Disclosure: Boca Mom Talk was given complimentary admission to the Museum of Discovery &amp; Science in exchange for publicity consideration. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor.  </em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href=""></a></em><strong><em>, </em></strong><em>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. </em><strong><em>Modern Boca Mom</em></strong><em> features events for mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options—as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p> <p><em><br></em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersWed, 27 May 2015 07:30:00 +0000 numbers point to dollar signs &amp; other news of note<h3> </h3> <h3><img alt="" height="375" src="/site_media/uploads/economic-growth2.jpg" width="450"></h3> <h3>Boom Time</h3> <p>Two sets of numbers last week showed how strongly Boca Raton and Delray Beach have come back from the Great Recession.</p> <p>Palm Beach County Property Appraiser Gary Nikolits released his office’s estimates of the 2014 tax rolls for cities and the county. Higher tax rolls mean more revenue for local government, even if the tax rate doesn’t increase. Your tax bill is the millage rate multiplied by every $1,000 of assessed value.</p> <p>Example: If you own a home in Boca Raton that for 2013 was assessed at $400,000, you paid 400 multiplied by roughly 3.7, or about $1,480. If your home increased in value for 2014 by, say, $25,000, you will pay almost $100 more. To give residents a tax cut, the city council would have to lower the tax rate. To figure the bill in Delray Beach, use 7.5 instead of 3.7.</p> <p>As long as the increases are not bubble-driven, however, rising property values indicate a healthy economy. Values dropped sharply after the real estate bubble burst, but demand for good services didn’t. Local governments had to cut staff, reduce such amenities as library hours, raid reserves or do all three and more.</p> <p>Three years ago, Boca Raton’s tax roll was $16.4 billion, which even post-recession was a whopping number for a city with fewer than 100,000 residents. The new estimate, however, is $19.4 billion—the largest in Palm Beach County. That covers all property not exempt from taxes, such as non-profit enterprises. Properties worth less than $50,000 also don’t pay property taxes if the owner has filed for the $50,000 homestead exemption. Government-owned property also is tax-exempt. Two of Boca’s largest employers—Boca Raton Regional Hospital and Florida Atlantic University—don’t pay property tax. Of course, their payrolls and spending help to drive the local economy.</p> <p>Boca Raton’s tax roll thus has increased 18.3 percent in three years. That percentage would be impressive in a less-affluent city. In Boca, it’s staggering. One reason, of course, is the surge in high-end new construction and teardowns. Another, however, is all that activity downtown that many people criticize.</p> <p>Delray Beach’s new tax roll also reflects the post-recession pickup in building. Property values have increased nearly one-third in three years, to $8 billion. As in Boca, neighborhood residential is a factor. But so is downtown construction, which will intensify the debate over the Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency. Under Florida law, revenue from higher property values within a CRA’s boundaries—Delray Beach is one of the state’s largest such agencies—must stay within those boundaries. It can’t go to the city’s general fund for services outside the CRA, and the city commission believes that Delray has many public-works needs citywide. The 2014 population estimates from the Census Bureau, which also came out last week, put the property valuations in greater perspective.</p> <p>The count for Boca Raton was about 91,300. Boca remains the second-largest city in Palm Beach County, and from the recent percentages is gaining on West Palm Beach, which is at 104,000. West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio would note that her city also has a lot of downtown residential projects in the planning/approval stage.</p> <p>Yet Boca Raton’s tax base is more than double that of West Palm Beach, despite that small difference in population. Indeed, West Palm’s tax roll of $9.9 billion is only about $500 million higher than Palm Beach Gardens’, and the Gardens is barely half as large.</p> <p>The population estimate for Delray Beach is 65,000. For next-door neighbor Boynton Beach, it’s 73,100. Yet Boynton’s tax base is just $4.6 billion, an embarrassingly low figure compared to Delray’s $8 billion.</p> <p>What’s behind all the numbers? IBM may be mostly gone in Boca Raton, but the company’s large operation three decades ago established the city as a corporate presence. Cities without a significant business tax base must ask more of their residents. Obviously, Boca has lots of high-end housing, which helps to fatten the tax base. (Palm Beach has the county’s second-highest tax roll.) But the main difference between Boca and West Palm Beach is the corporate component.</p> <p>Let’s use that 30-year timeline to compare Delray and Boynton. The cities once were about equal. Through superior elected leadership and leveraging of unique assets – the public beach, Atlantic Avenue—Delray Beach left Boynton Beach behind. Boynton still is growing people, but the city isn’t growing enough business. Nor has it developed a downtown entertainment district. The commercial hub is Congress Avenue, west of Interstate 95.</p> <p>If there is a caution behind these encouraging numbers for Boca and Delray, it’s complacency. Cities can get set in their ways when things are going well. Or they can embrace the opportunity and the challenge of going from very good to excellent.</p> <h3>Chabad on the docket</h3> <p>Wednesday night, the Boca Raton City Council will decide whether to approve the Chabad East Boca synagogue/exhibit hall on East Palmetto Park Road.</p> <p>Some residents of the nearby Riviera and Por La Mar neighborhoods oppose the project—ostensibly for traffic reasons—and said so during a five-hour hearing three weeks ago before the Planning and Zoning Board. The board, though, voted 5-1 to recommend approval.</p> <p>Similarly, City Manager Leif Ahnell’s memo to the city council recommends approval. Ahnell notes the many conditions designed to reduce the traffic impact. Chabad East Boca has agreed to those conditions.</p> <p>Ahnell wrote: “Given that the location of the proposed place of public assembly abuts East Palmetto Park Road, which is designated, according to the city’s comprehensive plan, as an urban major arterial roadway, and given that the applicant is providing as a buffer a required 25-foot setback, a 6-foot-wall. . .along the adjacent residentially zoned district located on the south side of the subject property, and that the triangular portion of the subject property. . .will remain vacant, it is the opinion of city staff that the request for additional building height (10 feet for one building) is not injurious to surrounding property. . .”</p> <h3>Hotel at the Morikami</h3> <p>On Thursday, the Palm Beach County Commission will consider a zoning change to Morikami Park that would allow development of a hotel. Given how touchy this subject has been with neighbors of the park, the staff memo stresses that approval of the rezoning would not mean approval of a hotel.</p> <p>The county owns the 173-acre park, which is west of Jog Road and south of Addison Reserve. The park’s best-known attraction is the museum and Japanese gardens, which are on a parcel donated four decades ago by George Morikami. The museum and gardens opened in 1977. Two years ago, the county commission voted to accept bids for a hotel that would feature a traditional Japanese design, in hopes of drawing even more tourists and getting them to stay longer.</p> <p>The material for Thursday’s meeting does not say whether the county received any bids. The reference is to park “improvements” that would happen under an updated master plan. For a hotel to be part of any such “improvements” apparently would require a single zoning designation for all 173 acres. Now, there are two.</p> <p>The Zoning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the change last month. According to the backup material for Thursday’s meeting, some neighbors expressed concerns about “lighting, noise, increased traffic and deforestation” that might come with a hotel. Members of the Morikami Board of Trustees spoke in favor.</p> <h3>Gary Nikolits</h3> <p>Just before his office released those tax roll estimates, Gary Nikolits announced that he would not run in 2016 for a seventh term as property appraiser. The public can judge the quality of Nikolits’ service by how little attention the office has received.</p> <p>Few offices have more potential for corruption. Unethical appraisers could cut values in big voting blocs, such as condo communities. They could lower them for big contributors. One former Palm Beach County property appraiser, David Reid, went to prison for soliciting bribes: reduced property values in exchange for work on his home.</p> <p>Like Reid, Nikolits is a Republican who regularly won elections in a Democratic-heavy county. The similarities with Reid, however, end there.</p> <p>Nikolits has been scrupulously fair in his work. The same goes for the office itself. County Commissioner Steven Abrams chairs the county’s value adjustment board, which hears complaints from owners who believe that their property has been overvalued, thus raising their tax bill. “We track this county with others,” Abrams said, “and the rate of appeals is the lowest in South Florida. Abrams has served on the board for six years.</p> <p>Nikolits has joked about his physical and personality resemblance to Elmer Fudd. But in a county that has seen plenty of corruption, Nikolits has been a model for how a public servant should operate.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong></em><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>  </p> <p>      </p> <p> </p> <p>       </p>Randy SchultzTue, 26 May 2015 12:51:00 +0000 WatchCommunityFly Us To The Moon<p><img alt="" height="531" src="/site_media/uploads/frank-sinatra-500-05-112911.jpg" width="450"></p> <p>He’s off! Our favorite weatherman, Channel 5’s Steve Weagle, is on the road, biking from Sebastian to Boca for the Red Cross—and collecting big checks along the way for that charity. Speaking of checks, why not get one of yours out and plan on using it to buy a couple of tickets to this Friday night’s Red Cross fundraiser at Jazizz in Mizner Park?</p> <p>The “21 Club” event has a Rat Pack theme—all the great bad boys of the 50s and 60s with a tribute show paying homage to Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. and all that cocktail and cool they represented. We hear Steve Weagle himself will be honored, and there will be lavish dinner stations, a creative silent auction, dancing and unforgettable entertainment. </p> <p>Tickets to the 5<sup>th</sup> Annual South County Event are $200 per person and must be purchased in advance. Sponsorship opportunities are still available. For tickets and more information, please contact Anna Erickson at 561/650-9105 or <a href=""></a>. You can also <a href="">click here</a> or visit the event's <a href="">Facebook page</a>.</p>Marie SpeedTue, 26 May 2015 10:22:00 +0000 Counter Coming to PBG<p><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/counterburger.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Burger joints are the swinging doors of the restaurant business: they open and close so often it’s almost impossible to keep up.</p> <p>But hope—and hamburgers—spring eternal, and coming later this year to the <strong>Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens</strong> will be <a href="" target="_blank">The Counter</a>, a burger-centric eatery with franchises in nine states and four foreign countries, as close as Aventura and as far away as Saudi Arabia.</p> <p>Like all of these upscale burger joints, The Counter boasts about its locally source and sustainable ingredients, its all-natural beef (Angus, in this case). And it offers both a roster of house burgers, from a classic cheddar and LTO to Korean BBQ, plus bison, turkey, chicken and veggie patties. If you’re a DIY sort, you can build your own burger by choosing from more than a dozen cheeses, sauces and toppings, along with assorted different buns and sides.</p> <p>Also on the menu are various appetizers, salads and sandwiches (including DIY grilled cheese), also a lengthy list of cocktails, wines, craft beers, and adult and kiddie shakes. If the Aventura Counter is any indication, the local outlet will boast a sleek contemporary look, with tall industrial-style ceilings, a cool gray-and-white color scheme with blond wood accents, and white leather banquettes.</p> <p>Oh, and those burger doors swinging shut? Both Chuck Burger and CG Burgers in PBG are long gone.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 26 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsThe Week Ahead: May 26 to June 1<p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="296" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/ethan-hawke-in-good-kill.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “The Good Kill” screenings</strong></p> <p>Where: Cinema Paradiso, 503 S.E. Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 6 and 8:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $8-$10</p> <p>Contact: 954/760-9898, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>“I blew away six Taliban in Pakistan today. Now I’m going home to barbecue.” This line, spoken by drone operator Thomas Egan (Ethan Hawke) in the new war thriller “Good Kill,” speaks to the paradigm-shifting disconnect between today’s drone “fliers” and traditional combat troops. Technology’s ability to reign death on enemy combatants—and inevitably civilians—from the comfort of one’s computer is disturbing and, to put it mildly, ethically questionable. For Egan, a former fighter pilot who is now marooned behind the controls of a drone, his job leads to a crisis of conscience that affects his life at home as well as at the office. Andrew Niccol, lately of “Lord of War” and “The Host,” directs this intense and timely drama, which runs at least through Thursday at the Cinema Paradiso screens in Fort Lauderdale as well as Hollywood (that address is 2008 Hollywood Boulevard).</p> <p>WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="306" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/arts-garage---radio-theatre---casablanca.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “The Thin Man”</strong></p> <p>Where: Arts Garage, 180 N.E. First St., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25</p> <p>Contact: 561/450-6357, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Every pair of bickering detectives from the Depression-era onward probably owes a debt to “The Thin Man,” Dashiell Hammett’s swan song novel, released in 1934 and promptly adapted into a now-classic film. The movie version cemented the stardom of William Powell and Myrna Loy as retired detective Nick Charles and his wife Nora, whose plans of settling down are disrupted by a pair of murders, linked to an old friend of Nick’s and the so-called “thin man” who vanished in their wake. Five sequels continued the saga of these wisecracking detectives until 1947, but it’s this landmark original that fans remember most. Arts Radio Network will revisit the 1936 radio version of the script, which will be read by professional actors and supplemented by vintage music and handcrafted sound effects.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="344" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/tony_capellan_mar_caribe_2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening reception for “Poetics of Relation”</strong></p> <p>Where: Perez Art Museum, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $12-$16</p> <p>Contact: 305/375-3000, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>A film about the construction of a Kenyan railroad, a sculpture of lighted metal palm trees and a sprawling installation of plastic and rubber sandals seem to have little in common thematically; but then again, neither do the countless cultures swimming among the diaspora of contemporary Miami. The carefully curated group exhibition “Poetics of Relation” features these works along with three others, all addressing issues of cultural identity and immigration in today’s global melting pot. Inspired by the cultural commentary of Edouard Glissant, the exhibit hopes to enhance the public’s understanding of place in modern society. It will feature painting, photography, landscape and sculpture by the likes of Zarina Bhimji, Hurvin Anderson, Yto Barrada, Tony Capellan, Ledelle Moe and Xaviera Simmons, and it runs through Oct. 18.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/1933-3.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “Legends of Old School” concert</strong></p> <p>Where: Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $59.50</p> <p>Contact: 561/393-7984, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Remember the ‘90s? Those quaint halcyon days of popular music where used-CD stores thrived, music videos still helped sell records, and conservative presidents fretted publicly about the menace of rap lyrics? The organizers of this event certainly remember those days, amassing some of the rap and hip-hop world’s trailblazing chart-toppers for a night of throwback jams. The lineup is a veritable who’s who of influential rhymers: pioneering all-female hip-hop trio Salt-N-Pepa, Palm Beach County’s own Vanilla Ice, Fort Lauderdale native and Latin freestylist Stevie B., controversial Miami rap group 2 Live Crew, best-selling R&amp;B sensations Color Me Badd, and Gucci Crew II, another Miami-bred bass group. Dress appropriately, which is to say sunglasses after 8 p.m. and backwards Yankees caps are more than welcome.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="150" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/daniels-husband-980x300.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Daniel’s Husband”</strong></p> <p>Where: Island City Stage at Empire Stage, 1140 N. Flagler Drive, Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30</p> <p>Contact: 954/519-2533, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Prolific South Florida playwright Michael McKeever’s latest work is also arguably his most personal, an initially funny and ultimately tragic drama about the fine line between civil unions and marriage. In “Daniel’s Husband,” Mitchell (Antonio Amadeo) and Daniel (Alex Alvarez) are a committed couple with differing views on marriage. Legally, they can now marry, but Mitchell is obstinately, philosophically opposed to wedlock. This fundamental disagreement starts to create a schism between them just as tragedy strikes one of them, and the reality of custody, hospital care and rights for unmarried couples comes to the forefront. Like most of Island City Stage’s outstanding selections, “Daniel’s Husband” is an LGBT-centered but universally appealing play, as anyone who attended its premiere reading at Lynn University earlier this year can attest. It runs through June 28, and don’t miss it.</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="304" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/colin-jost-02.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Colin Jost</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Improv</p> <p>When: Various show times</p> <p>Cost: $22, plus a two-drink minimum</p> <p>Contact: 561/833-1812, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Colin Jost is smarter than your average bear. The attractively coiffed and pearly-teethed comedian is a veteran of the standup circuit, but his peculiar brand of deadpan comedy has also made him a successful humor columnist in <em>The New Yorker</em>, and a skillful deconstructionist of his own craft. He once came up with a “formula” for the perfect joke, which he shared with the <em>New York Times Magazine</em> in 2014: “One tbsp. current events; 1/2 cup structure; 8 oz. white-guy dancing; 1/2 tbsp. freshly ground Bieber paternity test; Osama bin Laden to taste; garnish with ‘This guy knows what I’m talkin’ about!’” His ascent to the top of the “Saturday Night Live” writer’s room as well as his overtaking of one of the “Weekend Update” chairs following Seth Meyers’ ascendance to talk-show hostdom is a triumph of eccentric niche comedy in a series that had become too pandering to the masses. See him at his most unregulated at this rare weekend of standup shows.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="328" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/6a00d8341c2c8053ef00e54f334b9e8834-640wi.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Free Summer Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Pompano Beach Amphitheater, 1806 N.E. Sixth St., Pompano Beach</p> <p>When: 5 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: 954/519-5500, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Arts Garage gets plenty of coverage on this website, but we don’t speak enough about Creative City Collaborative’s other cultural ventures in Broward County. There’s no better introduction to the CCC’s Pompano Beach initiatives than this free festival, which will provide, per its tagline, “bands, beers, eats and treats” to hundreds, possibly thousands of visitors. The Spam Allstars, South Florida’s famed mashup artists combining Latin, funk, hip-hop, dub and electronic music into their signature sonic cauldron, will perform, along with The People Upstairs, the veteran Florida progenitors of chill party-rock. The music runs from 5 to 8 p.m., while food trucks and vendors will provide nosh and wares, respectively. At 8 p.m., the amphitheater transforms into a Cinema Under the Stars for a screening of Clint Eastwood’s controversial box-office smash “American Sniper.” The movie is free, too, but you can reserve a seat at the event’s website.</p> <p> <img alt="" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/casavalentina.png" width='400\" height='></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Casa Valentina”</strong></p> <p>Where: GableStage, 1200 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $40-$55</p> <p>Contact: 305/445-1119, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Harvey Fierstein knows from drag shows. A former female impersonator himself, the flamboyant actor, comedian and playwright donned a plus-plus-plus sized dress for his Tony-winning turn as Edna Turnblad in “Hairspray.” He also wrote the seminal “Torch Song Trilogy,” centering on a gay drag performer, and the book for “La Cage Aux Folles,” a lighter musical about the same. But “Casa Valentina,” which premiered on Broadway in 2014, is a new spin on this old standby: The men dressing in women’s garments are heterosexual. The title refers to an enclave in the Catskills, circa 1962, where straight men break from their cloistered family and professional lives to act as women—a favorite pastime that may become irrevocably altered when they receive an opportunity to share their secret with the world. Fierstein’s first play in nearly 30 years received rave reviews on Broadway; expect GableStage director Joseph Adler and his superlative cast of nine to do it justice. The show runs through June 28.</p>John ThomasonMon, 25 May 2015 12:00:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsAnother Egg Breaks in Delray<p><img alt="" height="404" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/another-broken-egg-cafe-hatches-in-delray-beach-florida.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Breakfast junkies take heart, there’s a now an <a href="" target="_blank">Another Broken Egg Cafe</a> (<em>430 E. Linton Blvd., 561/276-7466</em>) open in Delray, the latest installment of an ambitious expansion that should see a dozen new cafes open throughout Florida in the coming years.</p> <p>Located in the Delray Place shopping center, the latest cafe joins a companion in Boca Raton, to be followed by cafes in Palm Beach, Coconut Creek and Fort Lauderdale.</p> <p>The Louisiana-based company injects a Southern-Nawlins influence into its breakfast and lunch offerings, with dishes like crawfish, shrimp and andouille sausage omelets and bananas Foster pancakes sharing menu space with everything from eggs benedict and breakfast tortillas to biscuits ‘n’ gravy and fried green tomato BLT.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 25 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsConcert Review: Pat Benatar<p><strong>Pat Benatar &amp; Neil Giraldo</strong><br>Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood<br>Photography courtesy of Ron Elkman</p> <p><img alt="" height="313" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/re1_0152.jpg" width="400"> </p> <p>Midway through her band’s spirited 90-minute set Thursday night at <a href="">Hard Rock Live</a> at Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood, Pat Benatar explained that she’s obligated these days to play the “Holy 14” songs from her catalog of 11 studio albums.</p> <p>“If I don’t,” said the woman born Patricia Mae Andrzejewski, “people will whine on Facebook.”</p> <p>Given the state of the record industry today, many groups would be happy with a run that resulted in a Quietly Revered 2 or 3, let alone a Holy 14 and a career that spans more than 35 years. All of which begs the question: Why isn’t Pat Benatar in the Rock &amp; Roll Hall of Fame?</p> <p>Since Benatar and husband/guitarist/songwriter/producer Neil Giraldo are having way too much fun on stage to worry about such trivial matters, allow me to do a little whining on their behalf.</p> <p>What is your problem, Rock &amp; Roll Hall? It’s not as if Benatar and Giraldo, whose 33-year marriage alone is deserving of an honor, don’t have the rock résumé. This isn’t Steve and Eydie at The Stardust. At Hard Rock Live, Benatar, whose classically trained voice sounds every bit as powerful and as compelling at age 62 as it was in her MTV heyday, tore through one hit after another—from the opening “Shadows of the Night” to a set-closing rendition of “Heartbreaker” that dovetailed into snippets from “Ring of Fire,” “Purple Haze” and the theme from “The Godfather.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="436" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/re1_1191.jpg" width="370"></p> <p>Unlike some of the Hall’s more questionable inductees, Benatar and Giraldo’s hits also happen to be rock songs (Did I somehow miss Donna Summer’s tour with the Rolling Stones?). As far as a body of work, consider this: Recent inductee Joan Jett landed nine singles on the Top 40 chart and delivered two platinum albums. Benatar recorded 15 Top 40 singles; produced a string of six consecutive platinum-selling albums between 1979-84, all of which charted in the Top 20 of the <em>Billboard</em> 200; and scored a No. 1 album in 1981 with “Precious Time.”</p> <p>Throw in the fact that she was an MTV goddess (“You Better Run” was the second video ever broadcast on the channel); that she inspired legions of young girls to chop their hair and wear spandex pants (as immortalized in the cafeteria scene in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High”); and that “We Belong” is cool enough for Ricky Bobby (it plays over one of the final scenes in “Talladega Nights”), the criminals on the mean streets of “Grand Theft Auto” (it’s in the 2006 version of the game) and the cast of “Pitch Perfect 2” (where it appears twice) … and it would seem that the Hall is sadly remiss in failing to recognize the work of Benatar and Giraldo.</p> <p>All of this, of course, was neither here nor there at Hard Rock Live, where the parents of two adult daughters (hard as that is for some of us to believe) did what they do best, bringing great energy to their classics (“Promises in the Dark,” “Hell is for Children,” and “Love is a Battlefield” were highlights) and honoring their fan base with a few social media requests (including a stirring version of “One Love”).</p> <p>Maybe one day the Hall will get its head out of its Stratocaster and give Benatar and Giraldo their just due. They belong.</p> <p><img alt="" height="321" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/re1_1292.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Set List</strong></p> <p>Shadows of the Night</p> <p>All Fired Up</p> <p>Invincible</p> <p>We Live for Love</p> <p>One Love (Song of the Lion)</p> <p>Go</p> <p>Strawberry Wine</p> <p>Promises in the Dark</p> <p>We Belong</p> <p>Hell is For Children</p> <p>You Better Run</p> <p>Hit Me With Your Best Shot</p> <p>Love is a Battlefield</p> <p><strong>Encore</strong></p> <p>Everybody Lay Down</p> <p>Let's Stay Together</p> <p>Heartbreaker (with excerpts of Ring of Fire, Don't Slander Me, Purple Haze and "The Godfather" theme)</p> <p> </p>Kevin KaminskiFri, 22 May 2015 15:07:00 +0000 & EventsMusicStaff Picks: a cleanse, a reception venue and a great spot in Delray<p><strong>Apura’s 3-Day Cleanse</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/apura_juice_cleanse.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Nancy Kumpulainen, Art Director</em></p> <p>I just completed Apura Juicery &amp; Coffeehouse’s PurLean 3-day cleanse, which includes cold-pressed, organic juices, cold-pressed coffee and raw, vegan food. Wow – I feel so amazing I can't wait to do it again! I feel completely energized, have better mental clarity and feel lighter. Everything tasted so fresh and delicious too! I just love how incredible I feel. You can choose 1, 3, 5 or 21 days. Go to<a href=""></a> for more details.</p> <p>(22191 Powerline Road, Boca Del Mar // 561/430-3596)</p> <p><strong>DaVinci's of Boca</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/davincis_weddingreception.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Valentine Simon, Production Coordinator</em></p> <p>“After the months of tireless planning of my recent wedding, I can say the best decision I made for the day was to have the reception dinner at DaVinci's of Boca. Not only was the private dining room absolutely stunningly decorated (which allowed me to worry less about decorating it myself), but it also had amazing and attentive service from the moment my husband and I walked in, without appointment.  The service was impeccable until the very end of the event, as one of the servers happily helped us bring flowers to our car. Most notable for making our wedding reception perfect was the manager Eric. He was there to answer every little crazy bridezilla question and went out of his way to make sure we were happy at every moment. He made the experience light hearted and fun, and I was so happy he was the person to help. </p> <p>The one thing that I and everyone else can't stop talking about from that night is the outstanding quality and deliciousness of the food. All of my guests sat eating in awed silence as each course came out, one delectable bite after another.  My aunt and uncle who were in from Denver, and my mother and stepfather in from New York, said they would have to come back and eat there every time they were back in town. My best friend's mother and stepfather have already went back for dinner the weekend after! </p> <p>And everyone says that the bride and groom never eat at their wedding – but I must say, I CERTAINLY DID EAT! And I am so glad I did, because it was incredible.</p> <p>A million "thank yous" to Eric, and to everyone else at DaVinci's, for making our night so much more special than anything we could have expected. We are looking forward to coming back soon, time and time again.”</p> <p>(6000 Glades Road, Boca Raton // 561/362-8466)</p> <p><strong>Caffe' Martier</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/caffemartier.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“What used to be Delray's venerable Arcade Tap Room (and a series of restaurants), is now Caffe' Martier, a European enclave and piazza in the middle of Atlantic Avenue—and our new go-to place for fresh light bites—and handcrafted fresh cocktails from Nico, the Greek mixologist.”</p> <p>(411 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach // <a>561/450-6169</a>)</p>magazineFri, 22 May 2015 08:21:00 +0000 Hosts Sake Dinner<p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/multi-colored-bottles.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Looking for something to do tonight?</p> <p>Check out what the <a href="" target="_blank">Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens </a>(<em>4000 Morikami Park Road, Delray Beach, 561/495-0233</em>) has cooking. It’s a seminar-tasting-dinner on Japanese rice wine, sake. Five different sakes from five different Japanese prefectures will be featured, along with a short talk on each by “The Sake Guy,” John Gauntner.</p> <p>Dinner will be a selection of bites from the Morikami’s recently renovated and upgraded Cornell Cafe. The event runs from 6 to 9 p.m. and costs $55 for museum members and $75 for non-members. Get your tickets <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 22 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsWeeding Out a Culture of Stench<p><strong>Randy Schultz</strong>'s "City Watch"</p> <p><img alt="" height="346" src="/site_media/uploads/schultzhome-1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Clearing the Air in Delray</strong>: The latest indication of how things have changed in Delray Beach came Tuesday afternoon.</p> <p>City Manager <strong>Don Cooper</strong> e-mailed a memo informing the mayor and the city commission of “allegations of numerous purchasing violations by city employees over multiple years dating back, as best as we can determine at this point, to at least 2006, and (involving) substantial amounts of money.” There is one criminal investigation, and Cooper said, “There may be others.” Investigations by the city, the Office of Inspector General and the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s Office are examining not only potential criminal charges but also violations of the county ethics code and the city code.</p> <p>Do the math, and you understand that the 2006 date means that what Mayor <strong>Cary Glickstein</strong> called “simple exploitation of systemic breakdowns of fundamental management-level control and oversight” went on for at least six years under former City Manager <strong>David Harden</strong>, who retired at the end of 2012. In his memo, Cooper referred to “a cultural and management processes that either ignored ethical requirements or were unaware of those requirements, but, in either case, are indicative of systemic failures to maintain high ethical standards ...”</p> <p>The first sign of trouble, however, didn’t come until after Harden left. Harden’s successor was <strong>Louie Chapman Jr</strong>. A year ago, the Office of Inspector General flagged an improperly authorized trash cart purchase on which Chapman and former Community Improvement Director <strong>Lula Butle</strong>r had misled the commission. That investigation revealed widespread purchasing problems, and the commission made fixing them a priority when it hired Cooper last November.</p> <p>Mission being accomplished. In his memo, Cooper said “a new purchasing department will be created and charged with all purchases over $2,500 and with the responsibility of enforcing all purchasing requirements, per commission direction. A complete review of policies and procedures will be undertaken to ensure Best Management Practices are implemented and followed, combined with training and annual evaluation of compliance.” The commission will get quarterly reports “as to compliance and changes made.”</p> <p>When it comes to city government, purchasing is as basic as it gets. It’s to management what street paving and trash pickup are to services. If a city can’t spend the public’s money properly, something is terribly wrong. Yet in Delray Beach, according to Cooper, the problem involves “allegations of employees or relatives of the employees doing business with the city” and “the chain of employees reviewing and approving the transactions.” Even as the investigations continue, it’s clear that Delray Beach had massive institutional failure.</p> <p>For those who have been watching, it doesn’t come as a big surprise. In Harden’s last years there was a sense of something off in Delray, despite the continued success of Atlantic Avenue and the demand for housing. Management and commissioners, though, didn’t want anyone looking.</p> <p>Harden resisted Office of Inspector General oversight. He argued that inspector general investigators should have to make appointments to speak with city employees. He argued that cities should be able to define “waste,” “fraud” and “mismanagement” as they saw fit. Harden argued in 2012 that Delray Beach didn’t have to put the trash-hauling contract out for bid. In a report triggered by a citizen complaint, the inspector general disagreed.</p> <p>This month, the inspector general issued a follow-up report. It concluded that because Delray used the office’s 2012 finding to challenge the contract and get a new hauler, the payoff to the city is $12 million. In 2012, Harden disagreed with the inspector general’s conclusion, claiming that because money went from residents to the hauler—Waste Management—and not directly to the city, the bidding rule didn’t apply. Using that argument, Waste Management lost without the case even going to trial.</p> <p>Cooper responded to the new OIG report by saying that “we appreciate the work that has been done on this matter and the savings that the City of Delray Beach has received as a result of your recommendations.” His attitude represents a dramatic shift.</p> <p>For the last two years, as reformers have joined the commission, there have been comments—some from people aligned with former county commissioner <strong>Mary McCarty</strong>—that these new elected leaders are too tough on city staffers. The theme came up in the mayor’s race this year, with talk that Delray Beach under Glickstein has become less civil.</p> <p>In fact, those accusations are bogus. Delray Beach needed change, and is getting it. That doesn’t happen without raising issues. The resulting change may not please some who once had influence but it’s benefiting residents. In an e-mail to Cooper late Tuesday, Commissioner <strong>Shelly Petrolia</strong> praised the new manager, saying, “You have my full support to do whatever is necessary to weed out this ‘culture’ of stench.”</p> <p>*******</p> <p><strong>To Finish or Not to Finish El Rio</strong>: Boca Raton’s Hillsboro El Rio Park is on the north side of 18th Street just west of the Florida East Coast Railway tracks. It has a baseball field and a soccer field. The rest of the park had been planned for the south side of 18th Street. Then came the recession.</p> <p>The city is studying whether to complete the park. A second public hearing is set for 6:30 p.m. next Thursday at the downtown library. The purpose, according to the city, is “to receive input and comment concerning the amenities to include in the development of the Hillsboro/El Rio park site.” The language could make it seem as though the city has decided to proceed with the park, which has drawn opposition from some residents of the Camino Lakes neighborhood across the El Rio canal west of the site. (Full disclosure: I live in Camino Lakes. I am not involved in any attempt to oppose or support the park.)</p> <p>In an e-mail, Mayor <strong>Susan Haynie</strong> said the city has made no decision to proceed. “(The hearing) is an effort to update the master plan so we can proceed with the study.” The master plan is a decade old. “We know from building (Fire Station 7, just east of the park site) the great expense of building structures on unstable soil due to the previous dump.” The park site used to be a city landfill. The city must close the soccer field sometimes because glass and other material percolate to the surface.</p> <p>“The other big question,” Haynie said, “is the boat ramp feature.” The original plan included a ramp. Here is where one park issue might become part of another.</p> <p>Silver Palm Park, at Palmetto Park Road and the Intracoastal Waterway, is Boca’s only launch site for motorboats. It’s very popular. It’s also across the street from the Wildflower property, which the city owns. The city council wants to work out a lease deal for a Houston’s restaurant on that property. That won’t happen unless the city and the operator of the restaurant can agree on a site plan that provides enough parking. The council also wants access for diners who arrive by boat.</p> <p>The council has been clear that accommodating the restaurant should not mean taking spaces from Silver Palm Park. But would things be easier if the city had another boat launch? Maybe at Hillsboro El Rio Park?</p> <p>Haynie said, though, that only a “non-motorized facility should be explored” at Hillsboro El Rio. Such a facility, Haynie said, could be eligible for a grant from the Florida Inland Navigational District. Haynie called the site potentially “a great location for launching kayaks, canoes and (stand-up paddle) boards.”</p> <p>The last major park Boca Raton built is the 85-acre Countess deHoernle Park—with its large athletic complex—on Spanish River Boulevard west of Interstate 95.</p> <p>********</p> <p><strong>The Panhandling Issue</strong>: Does it bother you, while you’re stopped a red light, when someone approaches your car and asks for money?</p> <p>Me, too.</p> <p>It’s not the giving. It’s not whether the person is representing a legitimate cause. It’s the worry about someone getting run over. Boca Raton has a panhandling law. Palm Beach County doesn’t, but after Tuesday the county may have one soon.</p> <p>The county commission voted unanimously to approve on first reading an ordinance that would prohibit people from “displaying information, soliciting business or charitable contributions and distributing materials or goods” on state and county roads in the unincorporated areas of the county. It would apply to people begging for themselves or raising money for, say, firefighters. A public hearing and second vote are scheduled for June 23.</p> <p>There are First Amendment issues with any such ordinance, but in a memo to commissioners County Attorney <strong>Denise Nieman</strong> said safety has become the overriding factor. A man was struck and killed this year, Nieman said, while standing in an Okeechobee Boulevard median near the entrance to Florida’s Turnpike. That area is one of the most congested in the county.</p> <p>The ban would apply only to roads with medians. Violators would be fined $500 and/or given 60 days in jail. The potential jail time will be an issue at when the issues come back to the commission. Should panhandling lead to a criminal charge? But what if the fine alone doesn’t stop the behavior? I’ll have more next month.</p> <p>********</p> <p><strong>On the Move</strong>: <strong>Mack Bernard</strong> finally returned my call asking about where he lives.</p> <p>The former Florida House representative and failed state Senate candidate is running for the District 7 seat on the Palm Beach County Commission. The district includes portions of Delray Beach. Bernard’s Delray Beach home, however, is not in District 7. Records show that Bernard also owns a home in Boynton Beach that is in District 7, but the mailing address for that residence is Bernard’s Delray Beach home, on which his wife is listed as co-owner. She is not listed as an owner of the Boynton Beach home. The mailing address for Bernard’s campaign is his law firm’s post office box.</p> <p>County commissioners must live in the district they intend to represent—not just when they are in office but also when they qualify to run for it. County commission qualifying isn’t until next June. Bernard, however, has opened a campaign finance account.</p> <p>On Wednesday, Bernard told me that by the qualifying period he and his wife would be living in the district. He didn’t specify where. Bernard said they are looking at other houses in District 7. “But we won’t be living in the Delray Beach home,” he said.</p>Randy SchultzThu, 21 May 2015 10:20:00 +0000 WatchCommunityDelray BeachNewsOpinionsTown NewsMemorial Day 5K Run<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>It’s almost time for one of my favorite local running events: the <strong>Boca Raton Road Runners’ 38th Annual Memorial Day Family Affair 5K Run/Walk, Youth Mile and Little People Races</strong>.</p> <p><img alt="" height="324" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/bocaraton_memoriaday5k.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>One of the reasons I like this race so much is that the first 200 people to cross the 5K finish line get a free pie! It’s a reasonably shaded course at a hot time of year. T-shirts are guaranteed for the first 400 who register, and the kids’ races are cute and easy to watch. After the races, there will be food, water, music and a bounce house.</p> <p>Start time is 7:30 a.m., Monday, May 25, at <em>900 Broken Sound Blvd, Boca Raton</em>. The youth mile starts at 8:30 and the little people races at 9 a.m. All kids get finishers’ medals.</p> <p>The entry fee for adults doing the 5K run/walk is $35 each person. (Note: there’s a $3 processing fee for signing up online). Registration for the youth mile is $5 and for the little people - it’s $1 each child.</p> <p>There’s still time to register <a href="" target="_blank">online</a> or in person at the Runner’s Edge store in Boca Raton (<em>3195 N. Federal Highway, 561/361-1950</em>) or at Running Wild in Fort Lauderdale (<em>2563 E Sunrise Blvd., 954/565-9400</em>).</p> <p>If you don’t want to run, there’s always the need for volunteers. You can sign up online for what you’d like to do on race day.</p> <p>For more information, including a course map, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 20 May 2015 07:00:00 +0000 the Reborn Theatre at Arts Garage<p>South Palm Beach County has lost four—count ‘em four—regional theater companies in the past year. Two moved to the Broward Center (Slow Burn and Outre), and we wish them well, and two others folded (The Women’s Theatre Project and Parade Productions).</p> <p>If there is a glimmer of cultural hope, it’s that we were poised to lose a fifth company, the Theatre at Arts Garage, until the venue’s president and CEO, Alyona Ushe, announced two new directors to fill the shoes of outgoing artistic director Lou Tyrrell.</p> <p>Tyrrell’s announcement, in March, that he would be leaving Arts Garage was not wholly surprising—audience numbers for his provocative and cerebral plays this past season had been dwindling—but it was certainly disappointing. Luckily, Ushe’s replacements are similarly respected in the South Florida theater community for mounting works that are both challenging and accessible. Beginning next month with a play reading and continuing with a full season in October, Keith Garsson, lately of the Primal Forces company in Fort Lauderdale, and Genie Croft, his partner in crime from Boca Raton Theatre Guild and, previously, the Women’s Theatre Project, will take over the Arts Garage reins.</p> <p><img alt="" height="636" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/keithandalyona.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><em>(From left: Genie Croft, Keith Garsson and Alyona Ushe)</em></p> <p>“Keith read something about Lou leaving, and he reached out to us in terms of seeing what kind of partnership we could put together,” Ushe recalls. “We got to talking, and it just felt so natural. What he’s envisioning and what he’s done so far is exactly along the lines of what Arts Garage is all about. I think he’s going to make a phenomenal addition to our team.”</p> <p>At the time of the announcement, Garsson’s Primal Forces was just cementing its brand as a purveyor of thoughtful, contemporary plays with a focus on the lingering impact of the ‘60s counterculture. In Fort Lauderdale’s Andrews Living Arts Studio, Garsson produced David Mamet’s “The Anarchist,” Lanford Wilson’s “Redwood Curtains” and a critically revered version of Dominique Morisseau’s “Sunset Baby,” which was nominated for a Carbonell Award. He says to expect more of the same when he takes over the Theatre at Arts Garage in October with Laura Eason’s steamy comedy “Sex With Strangers.”</p> <p>“We will continue to do more of the oddities that I liked doing [at Andrews], but without the limitations of the size of that stage,” Garsson says. Indeed, rather than trying to box ambitious shows into a small stage, Garsson will have the freedom, at Arts Garage, to choose between producing shows on the main stage and in an expanded black box space formerly occupied by the Puppetry Arts Center of the Palm Beaches.</p> <p>“Sex With Strangers,” about a 20-something male sex blogger who tracks down his idol, an obscure female novelist in her ‘40s, will kick off a season focused loosely on the inappropriate desires of lust. In January of 2016, Zayd Dohrn’s “Reborning” hugs the border between comedy, drama and thriller, in a story about a sculptor and his mysterious new client. “The Devil’s Music,” opening next February, dramatizes the last concert by the inestimable blues siren Bessie Smith; and Kim Davies’ “Smoke,” opening in March 2016, is a thriller set in New York City about the ludic possibilities of human sexuality.</p> <p>Garsson respects the achievements Tyrrell has made in establishing the Theatre at Arts Garage, but he says he’s approaching the season from a different perspective. “Lou, from what I know, was in a way the most daring of everyone, completely gambling on all-new material,” he says. “I am not that much of a risk-taker. I’m maybe 80 percent of the way there, taking material that hasn’t necessarily been seen in New York but maybe has been seen elsewhere—little-known works, along the lines of the old Ripley’s Believe it or Not.”</p> <p>Of Primal Forces/Arts Garage’s place in the South Florida theater scene, Garsson describes it thusly: “The Wick has the market cornered on the classics. Slow Burn’s got the market cornered on the offbeat recent musicals. Those two things do not interest me right now, as a producer. You’ve got Island City, which specializes in predominantly gay material. You’ve got people like Mark Della Ventura specializing in millenials. You’ve got Palm Beach Dramaworks specializing in the classics. There’s an empty area there for new stuff with a ‘60s feel.”</p> <p>“I think we’re growing,” adds Ushe. “Every season we’re getting bigger and better. I think with the selection of plays that Keith is putting out, it will help us reach younger audiences as well. They’re a little edgier. We’ll continue what we’ve been doing so far and build on top of it and try to get more folks aware of us. This is our mission. I think we’re getting there.”</p> <p><em>For more on the Theatre at Arts Garage’s 2015-2016 theater season, and to purchase season tickets, call 561/450-6357 or visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 20 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachTheatreUpcoming EventsMemorial Day Dishes<p><img alt="" height="36" src="/site_media/uploads/greengoddess.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Memorial Day is just around the corner, and that means keeping your cool during hot and humid afternoon pool parties. While I don’t believe in sticking to one dietary theory all the time, I do find that seasonal eating can help us feel our best. Because our bodies are always looking for balance, your system has to work extra hard to maintain its internal temperature during extremely hot Florida days.</p> <p><img alt="" height="468" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/memorialday.jpg" width="485"></p> <p>With that in mind, cooling foods are the perfect way to keep your body balanced when you’re out in the heat. To help you enjoy the parties and save time in the kitchen, here’s a quick and easy recipe, plus a list of my top 10 cooling foods.</p> <p><strong>Jicama Salad</strong></p> <p>This summer skip the potato salad and try jicama instead. This root vegetable is very hydrating and has 1/3 the calories and double the fiber of the potato! If you’re note sold, note the other great benefits of this salad: avocado helps lower your blood pressure, cabbage supports your liver (that may be overworking if you are celebrating with cocktails) and red pepper helps boost your system with antioxidants.</p> <p>Salad Ingredients:</p> <p>1 cup of organic corn (frozen and thawed is fine)</p> <p>1 jicama root, peeled and julienned</p> <p>1 head of purple cabbage, sliced</p> <p>½ red bell pepper, diced</p> <p>1 avocado, chopped</p> <p>2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped</p> <p><strong>Dressing:</strong></p> <p>½ cup lime or lemon juice</p> <p>1 cup extra virgin olive oil</p> <p>2 cloves garlic</p> <p>2 teaspoons sea salt</p> <p>2 teaspoons chili powder</p> <p>2 teaspoons cumin powder</p> <p>Throw dressing ingredients together in a blender. Mix together with the jicama, pepper cabbage, corn and avocado. Garnish with chopped cilantro.</p> <p><strong>TOP 10 COOLING FOODS</strong></p> <p><strong>SAVORY</strong></p> <p>Cucumbers</p> <p>Tomatoes</p> <p>Bell Peppers</p> <p>Jicama</p> <p>Celery</p> <p><strong>SWEET</strong></p> <p>Watermelon</p> <p>Honeydew</p> <p>Grapes</p> <p>Oranges</p> <p>Mangoes</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more from the Green Goddess, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-green-goddess/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>About Alina Z.</strong>
</em></p> <p><em>Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida,  Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at, visit Alina’s website at <a href=""></a>, or follow her on Facebook (<a href="/admin/blog/blogpost/10225/"></a>) or Twitter (<a href="">@CoutureFood</a>). The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at <a href="/"></a>.</em></p>Alina Z.Wed, 20 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Eau Palm Beach Gets a New Chef<p><img alt="" height="450" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/eauthomsen.jpg" width="300"></p> <p>Good news at <a href="" target="_blank">Eau Palm Beach</a>, the former Ritz-Carlton on the ocean in Manalapan.</p> <p>A year and a half after the transition, the swanky resort has hired an executive chef with the kind of culinary chops its high-end clientele expects. He’s <strong>Josh Thomsen</strong>, most recently chef-partner at Agricola in New Jersey with a resume that includes stints with such restaurant superstars as Michael Mina, Thomas Keller (French Laundry) and Joachim Splichal (Patina). Also from Agricola is chef de cuisine, Manlee Siu, who will take over the kitchen at Angle, Eau’s “fine dining” eatery.</p> <p>Frankly, it’s a move that should have come a long time ago. And next step is to continue upgrading  the resort; the whimsical Jonathan Adler redo has been a hit.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 19 May 2015 10:51:00 +0000 & ReviewsThe Governor Scott crisis and lawyering up for Atlantic Crossing<h3><span>The health and budget crisis  </span></h3> <h3><img alt="" height="316" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/screen_shot_2015-05-19_at_8.16.06_am.png" width="490"></h3> <p>You wonder if any staffers at area hospitals had to spend the weekend struggling not with a medical emergency but with a political emergency.</p> <p>Last Wednesday, Gov. Rick Scott made a “request” to all of Florida’s hospitals for financial and clinical information going back to 2006. He wanted the information by Monday, for review by his <strong>Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding</strong> at its first meeting Wednesday. This would be the commission whose nine members include just one person from the health care industry—an orthopedic and reconstructive surgeon from Gainesville. In his form letter to hospitals and insurers, Scott asked for “information on your services, profits, costs and patient outcomes.”</p> <p>In roughly a month, Scott has turned his mismanagement of negotiations with the federal government over health care money into a political crisis and an attack on hospitals that support continuation of that money, known as the <strong>Low Income Pool</strong> (LIP), and expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Rather than referee a dispute between the Florida House and Senate over Medicaid expansion and that LIP money, Scott allowed the House to leave early. The session ended without a budget.</p> <p>A three-week special session will start June 1. It could last for three weeks. The new budget year starts July 1. The governor is rattling nerves with talk of a potential state government shutdown. Last week, as legislative leaders announced progress in their budget talks, he asked agency leaders for a list of essential services.</p> <p>Scott also has puzzled and annoyed hospital administrators with his idea that health care facilities should share profits to avoid the need for that LIP money. The share for hospitals is slightly more than $1 billion. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has told Scott since 2011 that the money would end unless the state found a better way to spend it than just reimbursing hospitals for emergency room care.</p> <p>The Obama administration wants to solve that problem by getting health insurance to more Floridians, which supposedly would reduce the use of emergency rooms for non-emergency care. Before 1.6 million Floridians signed up for coverage through the Affordable Care Act exchange, the state had the second-highest rate of uninsured. To cover nearly 900,000 more less-affluent Floridians, the state could use money from the Affordable Care Act, under a Senate plan that would call it the Florida Health Insurance Affordability Exchange, not Medicaid expansion. Scott and the Florida House, however, don’t want to approve anything related to the health care law, which the governor sued to overturn.</p> <p>The call for profit-sharing is especially odd, since Scott in his former life ran a for-profit hospital company and left with $300 million in stock when the board forced him out during an investigation that resulted in Columbia/HCA being fined $1.7 billion for Medicare and Medicaid fraud. The governor also has a law degree, but he ignored legal issues in asking hospitals to share the wealth.</p> <p>Boca Raton Regional Hospital, for example, is a non-profit, run by a community-based board. So is Boynton Beach-based Bethesda Health. But West Boca and Delray medical centers are part of investor-owned, for-profit Tenet Healthcare, which a national board oversees. Board members have different obligations to their institution based on the type of institution. What if sharing profits jeopardized bond payments? What about hospitals that— unlike those four—receive direct taxpayer support, not just Medicaid and Medicare money? What about Lakeside Medical Center in Belle Glade, which depends on the Health Care District of Palm Beach County—the only such agency in the state?</p> <p>Among the four area hospitals, the fight over Low Income Pool money and Medicaid expansion matters least to Boca Regional. According to the Senate, the hospital would lose $935,000 if the LIP money stopped and there was no Medicaid expansion. According to the governor’s figures, Boca Regional made $10.6 million in fiscal year 2014, a total margin of 3.1 percent. The bulk of Boca Regional’s revenue comes from Medicare, not Medicaid.</p> <p>West Boca and Delray have more to lose. In the same scenario—LIP money stops; the Legislature doesn’t expand Medicaid—West Boca would lose $2.5 million and Delray would lose $2.7 million. Their reported profits for the fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 2013 were $7.6 million and $19.8 million, respectively.</p> <p>As I wrote last month, though, the fight matters a lot to Bethesda. The company provides a lot of care to uninsured patients, especially pregnant women, and could lose $7.2 million if that federal reimbursement money ends. Bethesda also has the most to gain from Medicaid expansion. Scott’s figures showed Bethesda’s 400-bed main hospital on Seacrest Boulevard losing just under $300,000 for the year that ended Sept. 30, 2014. Bethesda also owns an 80-bed facility west of Boynton.</p> <p>Scott did not order hospitals to send their information. One wonders, though, if he will keep a list of those that refused. The governor’s health care commission is not serious, but his capacity for trying to dodge blame and make villains of others is real.</p> <h3>Atlantic Crossing</h3> <p>Nothing goes easily when the Delray Beach City Commission discusses Atlantic Crossing. Wednesday night will not break that pattern.</p> <p>On the commission’s agenda is a recommendation from City Attorney Noel Pfeffer that Delray Beach hire land-use lawyer Debbie Orshefsky—in Pfeffer’s words—“for the task of reviewing the amended development agreement (with Atlantic Crossing) and any proposed settlement agreement with respect to this project.” Mayor Carey Glickstein and Commissioner Jordana Jarjura will agree. Commissioner Shelly Petrolia will not.</p> <p>It’s all a matter of perspective. Glickstein and Jarjura are lawyers themselves. Glickstein also is a developer. Jarjura is a land-use lawyer. With the goal of getting a site plan for Atlantic Crossing that includes the Atlantic Court easement and a development agreement that protects the city, Glickstein and Jarjura like the idea of hiring Orshefsky, who is nationally known and has spent her career representing developers, mostly in Broward County. Find someone who knows the tricks and the angles. “She would be a great card to have in our pocket,” Jarjura said. The bill would not be more than $15,000.</p> <p>Petrolia, however, sees Pfeffer’s recommendation of Orshefsky as too exclusive and as his latest in a pattern of controversial actions regarding Atlantic Crossing.</p> <p>Petrolia starts with the first development agreement that Pfeffer proposed last fall, having been hired in June. (Petrolia voted to hire him.) A lawsuit against Atlantic Crossing was active—the developers since have prevailed— and Petrolia believed that the agreement aligned the city with the developers regarding the litigation. Petrolia also noted the tumultuous Planning and Zoning Board meeting on Atlantic Crossing three months ago—the subject was a new plat—that Pfeffer aborted two hours in because the meeting hadn’t been properly noticed. She believes that Pfeffer all along has been timid in making the case that the city did not give up Atlantic Court in January 2014, when the commission approved a new site plan without the road.</p> <p>Now Petrolia disagrees with Pfeffer’s choice of Orshefsky because she prefers the Weiss Serota law firm that helped Delray Beach get out of the Waste Management contract, so the city could choose a different, cheaper trash hauler. Because of that work, Petrolia said, the firm “has the public’s trust to deliver good news or bad news” from negotiations over a project that so many Delray Beach residents dislike to varying degrees of intensity. If her previous concerns “shouldn’t give me pause for concern over your single recommendation,” Petrolia wrote in an email to Pfeffer, “shame on me.”</p> <p>The irony, based on my conversations Monday with Glickstein, Jarjura and Petrolia, is that all three want the same result: Atlantic Court back in the project and the city protected. Example: Atlantic Crossing’s parking will be underground. Glickstein wants the city indemnified if “a Sandy-like storm surge” floods that parking. “This is not just a land-use issue,” Glickstein said. “This is a risk-management issue.”</p> <p>Glickstein, Jarjura and Petrolia also all dislike Atlantic Crossing—too big, wrong spot—and would not have voted for it in December 2012. Delray Beach, Glickstein said, should have appreciated the location of the property and reduced the zoning years ago, at least the block east of Northeast Seventh Avenue that borders Veterans Park. All realize, however, that Delray Beach at this point can’t change the size and scope of the mixed-use project. Getting the road back in with no other surprises, Petrolia said, “would be worth a victory lap.” Petrolia wonders, though, why only Glickstein, Jarjura and Pfeffer have seen the new preliminary, revised site plan that includes Atlantic Court.</p> <p>Commissioner Mitch Katz shares Petrolia’s concern about the attorney choice, but he won’t be at Wednesday’s meeting. It was moved from Tuesday at the request of Glickstein and Petrolia, so they could attend a year-end concert at their children’s school.</p> <p>Petrolia and Katz are right that choosing an attorney—to buttress Glickstein’s negotiations with Atlantic Crossing—is on a tight schedule. But the city needs a resolution before too much more time expires and the city’s position weakens. There’s also precedent for a Palm Beach County city hiring a developers’ lawyer and making it work.</p> <p>When Nancy Graham was mayor of West Palm Beach, she hired Bob Sanders for the city’s legal department. He had been the builders’ go-to guy, even getting Palm Beach to approve the Esplanade—against all expectations. Sanders then helped West Palm Beach condemn and acquire the land that became CityPlace—also against all expectations. Graham wanted Sanders’ talent on her side, not against her.</p> <p>Petrolia makes a good case that Pfeffer moved too fast early on regarding Atlantic Crossing. His job, though, is to protect Delray Beach from dangerous legal exposure. Pfeffer is correct that Orshefsky’s qualifications are superb. Since Glickstein, Jarjura and Petrolia agree on the goal, you hope that even as they disagree they can work with Pfeffer on the best way for Delray Beach to get there.</p> <h3>Bridge alert!</h3> <p>If you plan to be in downtown Delray Beach tonight, leave early or plan your departure in a way that doesn’t involve crossing the Atlantic Avenue bridge.</p> <p>The city advises that the bridge will be closed from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. Wednesday for maintenance and repairs. Alternatives are the George Bush Boulevard bridge to the north and the Linton Avenue bridge to the south.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong></em><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>  </p>Randy SchultzTue, 19 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: May 19 to 25<p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="572" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/tumblr_n9y5pshn471shq3f9o1_500.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Chris Berman</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $50–$112.10</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="http://http//" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>As an athlete, you know you’ve arrived in the big leagues when Chris Berman has turned your name into an elaborate pun. When he eventually retires, the ESPN anchor will be remembered as much for his oddball sense of humor as for his analysis. His sly, goofy, occasionally brilliant nicknames for players include LaMarr “Where Does it” Hoyt, Chuck “New Kids on” Knoblauch, Scott <strong>“</strong>Supercalifragilisticexpiala”<strong> </strong>Brosius and my personal favorite, Hideo “Ain’t Gonna Work On Maggie’s Farm” Nomo. It takes a singular sort of genius to come up with material like this, and it has helped keep the outspoken commentator on ESPN’s airwaves since 1979, making him one of the network’s longest-tenured employees. At this rare appearance, courtesy of Broward College’s 2015 Speaker Series, the broadcaster known affectionately as “Boomer” will discuss the early days of ESPN—when it was, in his words, “a startup run out of a trailer”—on through its status as the nation’s sports authority, more than 30 years later.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="330" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/20130129-steveearle-x624-1359484495.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Steve Earle &amp; the Dukes</strong></p> <p>Where: Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $28</p> <p>Contact: 954/564-1074, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Not many country music stars would even think of hosting a radio program on the now-defunct liberal network Air America, but Steve Earle isn’t most country music stars. Growing up in San Antonio and Houston and later moving to Nashville, Earle gained his musical personality in these roots-music strongholds, worshipping at the altar of Townes Van Zandt and helping to invent the nascent genre of alternative country with his sensational debut, 1986’s “Guitar Town.” Since then, he’s released 14 other albums, surviving failed marriages, debilitating drug addiction and imprisonment in the process. The impressively bearded songsmith has turned much of this history of hard living into his fiction writing, his political activism and his timeless music, which has hopped genres from hard rock and psychedelic rock to bluegrass, folk and indie, with his die-hard fans expanding their musical consciousness along with him. He performs with his band The Dukes in support of their latest album, “Terraplane.”</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="250" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/harid-2007-416-80.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Harid 2015 Spring Performances</strong></p> <p>Where: Countess de Hoernle Theater, 5100 Jog Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday</p> <p>Cost: $25-$30</p> <p>Contact: 561/997-2677, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>A classical Russian ballet, a Nina Simone tribute, and an excerpted dance from “The Sleeping Beauty” are among the selections at this annual showcase of the latest graduating class of the Harid, Boca Raton’s world-class dance academy. Four ballets, separated by a couple of intermissions, will provide a full program of surprises and repertoire favorites, opening with the U.S. premiere of “Miroirs,” Canada-based choreographer Mark Godden’s five-movement ballet to the music of Ravel. Next, the dancers will take on “The Garland Dance,” the “Sleeping Beauty” number associated with Aurora’s 16<sup>th</sup> birthday party. “It’s a nice piece for younger kids to get out their pointe shoes and show off their classical technique,” says Gordon Wright, director of the Harid. The program continues with Martin Fredmann’s “A Little Love,” which is performed to five Nina Simone compositions, and it concludes with “Paquita,” the Minkus ballet originally staged for the Imperial Ballet of St. Petersburg. It features a pas de deux, numerous soloists and a corps de ballet. “It’s done fairly often by schools, because it’s such a good show piece for kids and gives them a variety of challenges,” Wright says.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="458" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/333.jpg" width="352"></p> <p><strong>What: Brazilian Voices</strong></p> <p>Where: Arts Garage, 180 N.E. First St., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25-$35</p> <p>Contact: 561/450-6357, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Musical director Loren Oliveira and internationally acclaimed vocalist Beatriz Malnic formed the Brazilian Voices choir in 2001 with the goal of stimulating social change through the multicultural exchange of music, acting as ambassadors for their country’s beloved bossa nova and samba. Their work has paid off in numerous awards, with the group accruing such accolades as Best Brazilian Group in the U.S. and Best Brazilian Samba Show in the U.S. from the International Brazilian Press—all from its home base in South Florida. The group, whose roster of heavenly vocalists can reach up to 40 singers onstage at one time, has excelled at themed genre crossovers from jazz, lounge and Afrobeat to its “Women of Rock” program, complete with guitars and drums. The choir sings some of its tunes in English, but even in Portuguese, its members’ voices are irresistible.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="188" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/barefoot_in_the_park_category.jpg" width="250"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Barefoot in the Park”</strong></p> <p>Where: Delray Beach Playhouse, 950 N.W. Ninth St., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 2 and 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30</p> <p>Contact: 561/272-1281, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Even theatergoers numbed to the ubiquity of Neil Simon comedies in South Florida can find reason to see “Barefoot in the Park” again. One of Simon’s most revered plays is also one of his most prestigious, originally running for three and a half years on Broadway, winning a Tony and helping to make a star out of Robert Redford; it has even been revived on the Great White Way twice since the turn of the 21<sup>st</sup> century, to great acclaim. Like “The Odd Couple,” it’s a comedy of culture-clashing pairs—two pairs, to be exact. A young newlywed couple, one of them free-spirited and the other more uptight, discover the emotional surprises only matrimony can bring, while dealing with the elders in their life: The wife’s long-suffering mother and the eccentric new neighbor in the New York City walk-up apartment. “Barefoot in the Park” runs through June 7 in this community theater production.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="317" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/evil-dead-ii-1987-04-g.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “The Evil Dead”</strong></p> <p>Where: Coral Gables Art Cinema, 260 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables</p> <p>When: 11:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $5</p> <p>Contact: 786/385-9689, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>When it was unleashed to the world at the Cannes Film Festival in 1982, Sam Raimi’s “The Evil Dead” instantly attracted praise from none other than Stephen King, a tough sell when it comes to all things horror. Since then, the sky has been the limit for this movie turned multimedia franchise, a mix of grisly horror and black humor that returned $2.6 million on its $400,000 budget. It’s about five friends who gather at a cabin in the remote woods—a storytelling trope that has been Xeroxed countless times by low-budget horror auteurs—only to encounter a Sumerian version of the Book of the Dead and a tape recording of incantations. Pretty soon, as Wikipedia succinctly puts it, one character “is attacked and raped by demonically possessed trees,” and all Hell literally breaks loose. This is the movie that turned Raimi into a cult director and Bruce Campbell into a cult star, and this is your chance to see it for a discounted rate (plus free popcorn!), on its original 35mm projection format to boot.</p> <p>SATURDAY AND SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="406" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/delray_beach_craft_festival_910_medium.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Downtown Delray Beach Craft Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Tennis Center, 201 W. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Events season in Delray isn’t over quite yet, but this Memorial Day tradition is one of the city’s last big hurrahs as spring melts into scorching summer. The Craft Festival celebrates its 18<sup>th</sup> anniversary at the cusp of downtown, where crafters from across the nation offer handmade wares for all price ranges, including paintings, jewelry, glasswork and pottery. Plus, there will be a Green Market with gourmet sauces, handmade soaps and live orchids.</p> <p>MONDAY, MAY 25</p> <p><img alt="" height="320" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/6350493eea10709ee65b1904bd9b5240.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Palm Beach Jerk and Caribbean Culture Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: South Florida Fairgrounds, 9067 W. Southern Blvd.</p> <p>When: 2 to 11 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25</p> <p>Contact: 561/247-1366, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This Memorial Day staple enters its 12<sup>th</sup> year of presenting the best in reggae music and Caribbean culture to South Florida audiences, and it hopes to top its record-breaking attendance of 2014. This year’s live performers include the Grammy-winning Jamaican artist Beenie Man (pictured), who has earned his distinction as the world’s “King of Dancehall;” Romain Virgo, a “lovers rock” singer who won a vocal competition at age 17 and has since topped many charts with his cover of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me;” Morgan Heritage, the reggae five-piece with 20 years’ experience; and British-born Maxi Priest, whose sound fuses reggae with R&amp;B. There also will be an art sale, a Kids Zone and plenty of food options, with vendors competing to win a “Jerk Cook Off” competition. </p>John ThomasonMon, 18 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsMax&#39;s to Host Chefs Battle<p><img alt="" height="401" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/chefwars.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Chefs and foodies hankering for a little toque-to-toque combat will get their wish beginning Wednesday, June 17, when <a href="" target="_blank">Max’s Harvest</a> (<em>169 N.E. Second Ave., Delray Beach, 561/381-9970</em>) hosts Chef vs. Chef, a battle of culinary gladiators modeled after the edgy cable TV cooking show, <em>Knife Fight</em>.</p> <p>Participating chefs will get a basket of “mystery ingredients” to use in the creation of several dishes, with the winners facing off against each other in a bracket-style competition, a la the NCAA college basketball tournament. A panel of foodies and press types will judge, with the overall winner getting an as yet unspecified grand prize and a portion of the proceeds going to a local charity.</p> <p>Ten bucks will get you into the peanut gallery for the competition so you can cheer on your favorite chef and find out whose cuisine reigns supreme.</p> <p>Interested chefs should email Honey Ackermann at <a href="" target="_blank"></a> and include their bio and contact info. A draw party will be held at the restaurant on Wednesday, June 3.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 18 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsSmoke BBQ to Open in Lauderdale<p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/smokebbq.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Where there’s smoke, there’s <strong>Smoke BBQ</strong>. And soon there will be a new Smoke BBQ in Fort Lauderdale.</p> <p>Yes, come this summer the folks behind the original Delray Smoke—certainly one of the best barbecue joints in South Florida—will bring their low ‘n’ slow ‘cue to the former Julian’s restaurant just off A1A. Unlike the Delray eatery, however, the Lauderdale Smoke will be counter-service only, eat in or take out.</p> <p>The menu will feature the same barbecue staples that have made the parent Smoke a favorite of ‘cue balls everywhere, from ribs and brisket to chicken and “burnt ends,” fatty, crusty, odd-shaped chunks off the brisket, usually tossed back in the smoker for a second go-round to fortify their flavor.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 15 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsNew Cinema Brings Luxury, Intimacy to Coconut Creek<p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/silverspot-10.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>(The Silverspot lobby)</em></p> <p>In an interview with me several months ago, Randi Emerman, marketing director for the now brand-new Silverspot Cinema in Coconut Creek, forecast the theater as being “like iPic on steroids.” After touring the theater this week, just a few of days before its proposed grand opening Friday night, I would disagree with this analogy. I would argue that Silverspot is more like iPic on Quaaludes, and I say that as a compliment.</p> <p>The Mizner Park hot spot iPic, for all its innovative approaches to luxury moviegoing, can seem too dependent on the bells and whistles. Cinephiles who want to lose themselves in the movies don’t necessarily appreciate the full-service experience, with its regular interruptions from wait staff. This won’t happen at the more down-to-earth Silverspot, where, as CEO Francisco Schlotterbeck told the media this week, “to experience the movie is the most important thing for us.”</p> <p>To that end, food will not be served inside the auditorium—though guests can take in selections from the snack counter, which includes pizza, chicken fingers and the now-ubiquitous sliders. There will be no intrusions from the outside world, and even the packaging of the products, the interior design of each auditorium and the seats themselves are colored entirely black, wrapping up attendees in a comfy cinematic cocoon.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/img_0598.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Located in the Promenade, the burgeoning outdoor shopping, dining and banking center of Coconut Creek, the 11-screen Silverspot advertises itself as a boutique theater, but it does match the upscale standards of iPic in other ways. There is no box office, so guests are encouraged to purchase tickets online or at five electronic kiosks near the entrance, where they’ll buy assigned seats. The interior design of the lobby is minimalist-chic. A bar dispensing bottled beer, wines and cocktails greets you upon entry, and, as Emerman points out, “your wine bottle will fit in the cupholders” of the seats.</p> <p>And speaking of those seats: These lumbar-supported, hand-stitched pockets of leather heaven are justifiably one of Silverspot’s proudest calling cards. Every seat is like a first-class plane accommodation, and those prone to falling asleep in the middle of a film will find no impediment to their problem here.</p> <p>Emerman, who is also president of the Palm Beach International Film Festival, is most excited about the programming of Silverspot, which will screen independent and art-house fare in addition to top-grossing Hollywood titles. Concerts, ballets and operas will be simulcast, and Schlotterbeck is looking into streaming sporting events as well. Other mini film festivals, including a Shakespeare fest in the fall, will also distinguish Silverspot from its peers.</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/silverspot-024.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>(The Silverspot lobby bar)</em></p> <p>The Coconut Creek location is the second Silverspot theater in Florida (the first has been operating for the past six years in Naples), and another is due in Miami Beach in the fall of 2016. Schlotterbeck brings more than 20 years of theater experience to this venture, which is on track to be the first LEED-certified cinema in Florida, and one of just 11 such cinemas in the country. By June, the theater’s attached restaurant, still unnamed but conceptualized by the acclaimed David Burke Group, will bring New York-style sophistication to pre- and post-movie dining.</p> <p>Combining sustainability with luxury isn’t always easy, but Silverspot hopes to pull it off, while attending to the entertainment and cultural needs of this underserved region in North Broward. Tickets will cost $14.50 for adults and $9.75 for children, with discounts for seniors and matinees, and with small additional fees for 3D movies. The theater will open to the public today at 4443 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek. For information and show times, visit</p>John ThomasonFri, 15 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesStaff Picks: two shops and an exhibition<div class="gmail_default"> <p><strong>Deconceptshop</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="236" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/deconceptshop.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Picked by Georgette Evans, Advertising Account Manager</em></p> <p>“This new Turkish home accessories store is wonderful. Beautiful mosaic lamps, colorful throw pillows and covers, intricate ceramics and table wear -- all imported, very unique and affordable in price. A must see for anyone looking to redecorate and looking for something new with a little flare.”</p> <p>(331 S.E. Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton  // <a href="" target="_blank"></a>)</p> <p><strong>"War Horses" at NSU Art Museum</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/nsu.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by John Thomason, Managing Editor</em></p> <p>"None of the art on display at the NSU Art Museum's new ‘War Horses’ exhibition bears the Adolf Hitler Seal of Approval. Labeled as 'degenerate art' by the Nazi regime while it was embarking on its path of global destruction, the Danish ‘Helhesten’ movement (it translates to "Hell Horse") thumbed its nose at fascism with its groundbreaking, dynamic surrealist flourishes and childish whimsy. This exhibition includes more than 90 works from the courageous early '40s movement, including paintings and sculpture, and it marks the first museum exhibition of its kind in the U.S. ‘War Horses’ opens Sunday, May 17, and runs through Oct. 4."</p> <p>(1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale // <a href=""></a>)</p> <p><strong>Athleta</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/athleta.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Rebecca Valenza, National Account Manager</em></p> <p>“The new Athleta store in Town Center is awesome!  Here you’ll find very high quality lifestyle clothing that you can work out in, weekend attire, hangout attire and just live-able stuff. The staff is awesome. See Mickey or James and they will take care of you like family!”</p> <p>(<em>Located in Town Center at Boca Raton, between Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale’s)</em></p> <p><strong>Walk in their Shoes</strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Freelance Web Editor</em></p> <p>"Do you have a pair of new or gently worn shoes you can afford to give away? If so, now is the time. From May 15-17, Town Center at Boca Raton is collecting new or gently used shoes for Dress for Success, an organization that helps women land employment opportunities. For every pair donated, the Diagnostic Centers of America will also donate $5 to a fund that helps women who otherwise can't afford it receive lifesaving mammograms. You can leave your donations at the DCA box behind the Starbucks kiosk between Macy's and Sears."</p> <p><em><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></em></p> </div>magazineFri, 15 May 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Finds: Baked Oysters<p>There are countless reasons to be grateful for living in South Florida—and having access to exceptional seafood is certainly one of them. Like other food categories, some seafood is at its best during specific windows of the year. Take the beloved oyster, which is at its plumpest and richest tasting during its prime time: spring.</p> <p><img alt="" height="382" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/sj-oysters.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>There are five species of oysters harvested or sold in the U.S.—Pacific, Kumamoto, Atlantic, European Flat and Olympia—encompassing some 150 varieties (based on where they live, the water they filter and how they are handled). Ultimately, the best-tasting oysters come from the cleanest water. Check your local seafood market for Florida-raised oysters for a truly local taste experience.</p> <p>Not only are oysters an immunity and energy-boosting treat packed with iron and B vitamins, but their shells are recyclable. Amazingly, oyster shells act as a great garden fertilizer. Their shells contain a high concentration of calcium, which produces strong, healthy plants and also balances the pH level of the soil. Simply crush the leftover shells and distribute them into the garden.</p> <p>Of course, there is also the popular myth that oysters are the ultimate aphrodisiac—but we’ll let you be the judge.</p> <p>The most common method of eating oysters is raw and chilled, with cocktail sauce and a squeeze of lemon on top. Another popular way to eat them is “Rockefeller” style, where the oyster is topped with various ingredients such as spinach or bacon—and baked in the oven.</p> <p>Keeping with this incredibly popular Rockefeller style as a guide, I created a seasonal recipe that sure to make your mouth water: <strong>Baked oysters with shaved asparagus and celery salt. </strong>In this recipe, seasonal spring asparagus and celery make for a super-fresh topping on the succulent warm oyster meat.</p> <p>This recipe is light, flavorful, and a total crowd pleaser—a dozen will not be enough!</p> <p><img alt="" height="493" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/seasonally-jane-oysters.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>Baked Oysters with Shaved Asparagus and Celery Salt</strong></p> <p>Makes 1 dozen oysters </p> <p><strong>Celery salt ingredients</strong></p> <p>1 celery spear, finely minced</p> <p>1/3 teaspoon sea salt</p> <p><strong>Broiled oyster ingredients</strong></p> <p>1 garlic clove, minced</p> <p>2 tablespoons unsalted butter</p> <p>1/4 cup bread crumbs</p> <p>6 asparagus spears</p> <p>Salt and pepper to taste</p> <p>12 oysters, shucked</p> <p>1/4 cup white cheddar (shredded) or Parmesan cheese</p> <p><strong>Instructions</strong></p> <p>1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On large baking sheet, arrange oyster half shells meat-side up. Set aside. Combine celery and sea salt in small bowl and whisk together to create celery salt. Add additional salt to your liking. Place in refrigerator until ready to serve.</p> <p>2) Using a potato peeler, slice asparagus spears using upward motion moving toward the tip. Shred each spear and chop in half to create short strands that will be easy for chewing.</p> <p>3) In a nonstick medium saucepan over medium heat, sauté garlic until just turning brown, about 2 minutes. Add butter, allow to melt, and infuse with garlic, about 1 minute. Stir in breadcrumbs, shredded asparagus, season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine all ingredients, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat.</p> <p>4) Spoon quarter-sized scoop of asparagus mixture on top of each oyster. Place oysters in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven and top oysters with cheese and a pinch of celery salt. Serve immediately. </p>Amanda JaneThu, 14 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Delray tidies up the Auburn Trace issue, and other news of note<h3><img alt="" height="367" src="/site_media/uploads/02_128639692701209880640064075004080.jpg" width="490"></h3> <h3>Delray getting its house in order</h3> <p>Slowly but steadily, Delray Beach is trying to clean up the financial mess of the Auburn Trace housing complex and to make life better for those who live there.</p> <p>The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., just approved Delray Beach’s purchase from IberiaBank of the first mortgage on the 152-unit and the roughly 18 acres in the city’s southwest neighborhood. The FDIC had to sign off on the price because Iberia gave Delray a roughly $500,000 discount from the $4.7-million-plus price of the note.</p> <p>City Attorney Noel Pfeffer said the closing must happen by May 29. Once it does, Delray Beach will be the lead creditor with a claim on Auburn Trace Ltd., the entity that owns and manages the complex. It is a subsidiary of Delray Beach-based Auburn Communities.</p> <p>Twenty-six years ago, when a much different Delray Beach was trying to encourage any residential project, the city loaned the developer $3.84 million. With interest, the city’s stake is now between $4.2 million and $4.3 million.</p> <p>As Pfeffer explained to the city commission four months ago, Delray Beach’s position as second mortgage-holder had become riskier. Iberia foreclosed on the property last fall because Auburn Trace Ltd., had not been making payments to the bank or the city. The developer then filed under Chapter 11 for bankruptcy protection.</p> <p>Depending on how the bankruptcy plays out, Pfeffer said, Delray Beach—being secondary to the bank—could get less of its money or, in the worst case, the city could have its position “extinguished.” If Delray Beach is first in line, the city has much more protection, though Pfeffer acknowledged in January that the purchase is a “complex transaction with an uncertain outcome.” Auburn Trace also matters much more to Delray Beach than to IberiaBank, which has $16 billion in assets.</p> <p>As long as the fate of Auburn Trace Ltd., remains uncertain, however, so will the outcome for Delray Beach and for residents of Auburn Trace. The developer’s latest move is a proposed sale of the project to Miami-based The Related Group. The company is best known for building luxury and market-rate condos—including SOFA 1 and 2 in Delray Beach—but it also has a large affordable housing department. Related’s Long Ha told me, “We’ve done several of these projects.”</p> <p>According to documents submitted to the Palm Beach County Housing Finance Authority, Related—under an entity called PRH Investments—would buy Auburn Trace for $9.5 million. To make the purchase happen, the authority would authorize up to $9 million in financing that comes with what the authority’s executive director, David Brandt, says is a 4 percent federal tax credit that would provide between 20 percent and 25 percent of the equity. Last week, the housing finance authority board approved an “inducement resolution”—a placeholder action to make the financing available if the parties can work out a deal. Brandt said no government agency would be on the hook for the bonds, which private investors would buy.</p> <p>The sale to Related, though, depends on Auburn Trace satisfying its creditors. That depends on making Delray Beach happy, and not just about money. As Mayor Cary Glickstein told me Wednesday, “This is also a public policy issue.” He means the welfare of Auburn Trace’s residents and the city’s wish for a safe, attractive project.</p> <p>Auburn Trace’s first offer comes up way short on the money. I have confirmed that the developer offered Delray Beach $2.4 million, or roughly 60 percent of what Auburn Trace owes the city. Related would spend $25,000 in renovations on each Auburn Trace unit, and the complex would have gated access, among other improvements.</p> <p>Auburn Trace’s attorney, Bradley Shraiberg, said the developer is “offering an alternative to (the city’s) proposed plan treatment” in the bankruptcy action, meaning the city’s purchase of the Iberia loan. Shraiberg stressed that “no plan has been approved for the debtor to solicit creditors. We are in the middle of that approval process.”</p> <p>Not surprisingly, my sense from communicating with commissioners is that Auburn Trace has to raise that offer. “That’s obviously just a starting point,” Commissioner Jordana Jarjura said in an email. “If I were to support a deal, it would need to make the taxpayers whole and also address the poor conditions of the property.”</p> <p>Pfeffer said Wednesday that he has other questions. The offer “needs context.” The city needs a “full understanding of the entire loan financing and the ownership entity.” Pfeffer said the city will “solicit added information.” It also appears that Auburn Trace wants to satisfy the Iberia loan at the price the city negotiated.</p> <p>Delray Beach and the city’s bankruptcy lawyer, Robert Furr, didn’t hear until late last week about the possible sale to Related and the appeal to the Housing Finance Authority. The agency would have to approve the financing by June 30 because there’s only a certain amount available in this area of Florida for authorization by the end of the state fiscal year.</p> <p>Surprises from Auburn Trace’s developer are not new. Sixteen months ago, the developer proposed on short notice that it give Delray Beach seven months of payment on the first loan—roughly $1 million—in exchange for the city granting a second loan of $4.3 million. That plan lacked even more details. A first commission vote approved it. A second rescinded it. This followed years of concessions to the developers, including the city subordinating its interest so Auburn Trace could get more financing.</p> <p>Delray Beach’s exit strategy, Glickstein said, is “to protect the city’s position and not to be an operator” of a housing project. The city probably would love to have a company with Related’s resources renovate and run Auburn Trace. The developer’s plan for getting there, however, must align with the city’s interest.</p> <h3>Bernard is back</h3> <p>When the Delray Beach City Commission considered that earlier Auburn Trace proposal, lawyer/former state representative <strong>Mack Bernard</strong> argued for it. He was representing Auburn Trace. The city’s financial officer said it would have been a terrible deal for Delray Beach.</p> <p>Yet as Bernard runs for the Palm Beach County Commission, Delray Beach is providing much of his early financing. Bernard raised nearly $35,000 in April, having declared his candidacy after District 7 incumbent Priscilla Taylor announced her intent to run for the northern Palm Beach County-Treasure Coast congressional seat of Patrick Murphy. He’s running for the U.S. Senate next year.</p> <p>Roughly 40 percent of Bernard’s contributions in April were from Delray Beach. His law firm gave $1,000, as did Bernard’s wife. Through his Luna Rosa Restaurant and himself, Fran Marincola gave $2,000. City Commissioner Al Jacquet, a longtime Bernard ally, gave $1,000. So did former Delray Beach Mayor Tom Carney. Another $1,000 came from the developer of Atlantic Crossing and from the politically-connected Boca Raton law firm Weiss Handler &amp; Cornwell.</p> <p>One early question for Bernard is whether he lives in District 7. It’s a weird-looking thing, concentrated in central West Palm Beach and in Riviera Beach. Then it runs along the barrier island to Lake Worth, where it turns west to take in many minority neighborhoods south to Linton Boulevard. In 1988, when voters expanded the commission from five members to seven members, District 7 was added and drawn as a minority-access seat. An African-American has held it from the first election in 1990. Bernard is Haitian-American.</p> <p>According to the Palm Beach County Property Appraiser’s Office, Bernard has owned a house in Delray Beach’s Bexley Park neighborhood since 2005. That house is outside District 7, according to the county’s map. That house, which is listed in the name of Bernard and his wife, is in District 4, which Steven Abrams represents.</p> <p>Records also show that Bernard—in his name—last December bought a house in Boynton Beach just east of Interstate 95. That house is in District 7. The mailing address, however, is the house in Delray Beach.</p> <p>Palm Beach County’s charter requires that commissioners live in the district they represent not just once they are elected but when they qualify to run. Bernard has qualified to run in District 7. Two calls to Bernard’s law office Wednesday were not returned by deadline.</p> <h3>County Administrator                             </h3> <p>Predictably, the county commission went with an inside candidate to succeed County Administrator Bob Weisman, who is retiring in August after 24 years.</p> <p>That candidate is Weisman’s deputy, <strong>Verdenia Baker</strong>. She will become the county’s first female administrator and also the first African-American. Coming in second was Assistant County Administrator Shannon LaRocque.</p> <p>Commissioner Steven Abrams, who represents Boca Raton, Delray Beach and surrounding areas, said Palm Beach is a “well-run county” whose administration “doesn’t need to be blown up,” despite what all who interviewed them agreed were the strong qualifications of the four outside candidates. Two commissioners had an outsider as their top choice.</p> <p>Abrams ranked LaRocque first, not because of any problems with Baker—“Verdenia’s great”—but because “the main asset in that job is to be a problem-solver, and I’ve seen Shannon solve some of the most intractable problems we’ve had.” Abrams cited the county’s transit service for the disabled—since improved—the utility problems in the Glades that left residents drinking “brown water”—there’s now a regional water plant—and the convention center hotel—“which will open on time and under budget” after delays and infighting had set back the project for 15 years.</p> <p>The smart move would be for Baker to name LaRocque her deputy. As Abrams pointed out, many of the county’s veteran administrators soon will be retiring. The county will need lots of institutional knowledge and problem-solving talent.</p> <h3>More election snafus</h3> <p>Sigh. Even the choice of Baker made Palm Beach County look yet again like the election screw-up capital of the country.</p> <p>According to a memo from Assistant County Administrator Brad Merriman, the county’s search firm miscalculated the candidate rankings submitted by the commissioners. Priscilla Taylor ranked Baker first, not Michael Rogers. Fortunately, the mistake didn’t change the outcome. Baker still came out on top, but with four first-place votes, not just three.</p> <p>So we’re talking embarrassment, not crisis. Still, November 2016 will be here soon enough.    </p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong><em>Randy Schultz</em></strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald and </em><em>Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>  </p>Randy SchultzThu, 14 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityPB Catch to Debut Beachy Lounge<p><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/summershack.png" width="400"></p> <p>Swanky seafood house <a href="" target="_blank">PB Catch</a> (<em>251 Sunrise Ave., Palm Beach, 561/655-5558</em>) is adding a pair of flipflops to its tasseled loafers with the debut this Saturday of <strong>Summer Shack</strong>, a more casual, beachy reworking of its bar-lounge.</p> <p>The “coastal cottage-inspired” decor is said to give the space the look of “an island beach shack with a modern twist,” and will feature marine lighting, striped surfboards and other beachy accouterments. New staff outfits and a roster of tropical-style cocktails will also be unveiled, as well as a new Summer Shack Ale created by chef de cuisine Aaron Black.</p> <p>Black’s Shack menu will boast easygoing comfort food dishes ranging from shrimp po’ boys and yellowfin tuna tacos to fried chicken and grilled hanger steak. If beachfront casual isn’t your thing, never fear. The rest of PB Catch will remain the same.</p>Bill CitaraWed, 13 May 2015 12:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsA Time to Discover<p>With a sweltering summer looming—and only so many splash pads and air-conditioned play gyms in Boca Raton—moms are looking for ways to stay cool and keep their children entertained. Look no further than the <a href="" target="_blank">South Florida Science Center &amp; Aquarium</a>, which just launched its new Discovery Center by PNC Grow Up Great.</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/2015-05-08_11.26.51.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>This bright and airy learning space inside the West Palm Beach-based center is targeted to walkers up to age 5 and features a 20-foot water table, a wall-sized Lite Brite, a lounge area for parents, a reading nook and dress-up area—and much more!</p> <p>My 2-year-old aspiring scientists were engaged in the space from the beginning (albeit a little short for the water table) and loved interacting with all of the activities in the Discovery Center, as well as the exhibits around the museum.</p> <p><img alt="" height="488" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/img_0520.jpg" width="487"></p> <p>Cookie Monster cut the ribbon that officially opened the Discovery Center on May 8, but that wasn’t our only Sesame Street sighting that day. Be sure to purchase tickets to see Big Bird and Elmo in a special 22-minute planetarium presentation of “<a href="" target="_blank">One World, One Sky.</a>” The show description said ages 4 and up, but our Boca tots loved the show!</p> <p>Admission is $15 for adults, $11 for kids (3 to 12); planetarium shows are extra. The Science Center is a proud participant in Bank of America’s Museums On Us program, a monthly promotion offering Bank of America customers free access to select museums on the first full weekend of every month (Saturday and Sunday). Guest must present Bank of America card and photo ID.</p> <p>The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium is at 4801 Dreher Trail North. Call 561/832-1988 or visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a> for more information.</p> <p><em>Disclosure: I was given complimentary admission to the South Florida Science Center &amp; Aquarium in exchange for publicity consideration. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor.  </em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href=""></a></em><strong><em>, </em></strong><em>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. </em><strong><em>Modern Boca Mom</em></strong><em> features events for mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options—as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersWed, 13 May 2015 09:00:00 +0000 Great River Race<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Calling all stand-up paddle boarders, canoers, kayakers and natural lovers. The <strong>13th Great Loxahatchee River Race</strong> is slated for this Saturday, May 16. It’s an opportunity for water lovers to test their skills on one of three options—a 1-mile recreational paddle, a 6-mile loop or 12-mile loop on the Loxahatchee River.</p> <p><img alt="" height="273" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/loxahatchee2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The race, hosted by Waste Water Management and Florida Paddling Trails Association, starts at Jonathan Dickinson Park (<em>16450 S.E. Federal Highway</em>) in Hobe Sound. The fee is $8 per person and $2 for parking. Attendees will enjoy a complimentary lunch; participants should bring their own beverages, but no alcohol (it’s not allowed in the park).</p> <p>If you don’t have a canoe or kayak, you can rent one at <a href="" target="_blank">Jonathan Dickinson Park</a>. To rent a stand-up paddle board or kayak, check out <a href="" target="_blank">Jupiter Pointe Paddling</a>.</p> <p>For more information, call 561/718-3890 or visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p>Lisette HiltonWed, 13 May 2015 08:30:00 +0000 Real Prom to Remember<p><img alt="" height="335" src="/site_media/uploads/get_involved.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>It’s prom season and I see so many of my friends going all out to outfit their kids—expensive gowns, hair and make-up and main-pedis, hotel accommodations—it’s a far cry from the good old days when proms were still actually held in the school gym, and no one would have dreamed of going somewhere to have an adult give you a smoky eye and a hair blow-out. But I digress. Regardless of my personal amazement at what proms have become, there is one I find pretty wonderful: A Prom to Remember, this Friday night at the Ritz-Carlton in Fort Lauderdale for teens aged from 12 to 19 who share one thing; they all have cancer.</p> <p>This is how organizer Brandon Opre tells the story:</p> <p>“When I realized that many teens suffering from life-threatening illnesses miss out on many of their high school memories, a thought came to mind. What if I came up a special event for these kids that they will cherish forever? High school prom is one of the big events of a teenager’s life, and had always meant a lot to me growing up, so what if we created this really cool prom for the kids? I bounced this idea off of several friends and people in the community; needless to say it gained momentum and my idea quickly became a reality.</p> <p>"At the beginning I figured we would invite all the cancer-patients in my local Fort Lauderdale area to this special Prom. Before long, I realized there are many other kids in the neighboring counties as well—I wanted to invite them all! With an entourage of community supporters rallying behind me, in 2009 we assembled more than just your usual Prom – we provided the ultimate prom experience for kids battling cancer. With that, A Prom To Remember was born and kids from all over South Florida were in attendance.</p> <p>“A Prom To Remember has quickly spread to other areas of the country, with Cleveland creating their first Prom in 2010. Other US cities will be launching events this upcoming year.</p> <p>“I am grateful for the support of our surrounding communities and hope to eventually provide A Prom To Remember for kids all across the country.”</p> <p>The Unforgettable Prom Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)3 charity; contact Brandon if you want to help at: 877/385-7766</p> <p><strong>THIS YEAR'S PROM</strong></p> <p>Where: The Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale (1 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd., Fort Lauderdale)</p> <p>When: Friday, May 15, from 7 to 11 p.m.</p> <p>Theme: Alice in Wonderland</p>Marie SpeedWed, 13 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 EventsTheater Review: &quot;Dames at Sea&quot; at The Wick<p>When I saw “Dames at Sea” at the Wick Theatre this past weekend, it came just five days after seeing the disastrous Broadway tour of “Anything Goes” at the Broward Center: Two cornball retro musicals set aboard ships. But the difference is vast and refreshing. The regional “Dames at Sea” is every bit as infectious and streamlined as the national “Anything Goes” was shrill and turgid.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/dames2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Premiering in 1966 in a tiny off-off-Broadway coffeehouse, “Dames” based its parodic narrative on the splashy, leggy Busby Berkeley movie musicals of the ‘30s, only with a sliver of their resources. The characters are deliberately stereotyped showbiz caricatures—pampered diva Mona Kent (Laura Hodos), brassy chorus girl Joan (Alison McCartan), small-town ingénue Ruby (Lindsey Bethea), the sailor and aspirational songwriter Dick (Alex Jorth), his shore-leave buddy Lucky (Blake Spellacy) and the grouchy, long-suffering theater director Hennesey (Gabriel Zenone). They collide backstage at a 42<sup>nd</sup> Street theater that just happens to be undergoing a demolition on their opening night, prompting the production to relocate onboard Dick and Lucky’s naval battleship.</p> <p>“Dames at Sea” is unabashedly insubstantial escapism, the kind that makes the Wick’s previous selections, “Oklahoma!” and “Man of La Mancha,” look like cerebral treatises. But under Michael Ursua’s imaginative and tonally consistent direction, this silly show radiates joy and uplift, simultaneously honoring and superseding its threadbare origins. Angela Morando-Taylor’s minimalistic, tap-driven choreography, performed in Act One in front of nothing by a propless brick wall, is punchy and captivating, while musical director Caryl Fantel, leading her exceptional three-piece band from her perch at the piano, conducts the show’s surprising wealth of styles, from Broadway pomp to ragtime, a Viennese waltz and a Latin-tinged tango.</p> <p><img alt="" height="346" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/dames1.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The cast, absent a weak link, captures the ‘30s-musical ambience while frequently winking at a nonexistent camera. While the men are unassailably solid, there’s a reason the dames share the show’s title: Hodos skillfully milks every comic moment with extended beats and entitled mugging, while an effervescent Bethea imbues her naïve Ruby with big-eyed wonder and a chipmunk squeak. McCartan effortlessly embodies her wisecracking chorus girl, sharing with the equally fleet-footed Spellacy the show’s finest hour, the tap celebration “Choo-Choo Honeymoon.”</p> <p>Equally inspired is the Wick team’s technical vision, gussying up the show’s coffeehouse austerity with just the right amount of dazzle. A black-and-white credit sequence, echoing the vintage movie nostalgia of “Dames,” opens the production on the Wick’s newly installed projection screen. A shadow play invigorates Mona’s Act One number “That Mister Man of Mine,” and the scenic design for the battleship-set second act features a frontal view of the ship’s deck, complete with three confetti-spewing canons pointing toward the audience and smoke billowing from its twin funnels.</p> <p>This kind of lavish technical detail likely isn’t new to “Dames at Sea;” after nearly 50 years of small-scale productions, the show finally was scheduled to debut on Broadway last year. That didn't happen, yet. But after this charming interpretation, who needs Broadway?</p> <p><em>“Dames at Sea” runs through May 31 at the Wick, 7901 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton. Tickets cost $63-$80. Call 561/995-2333 or visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 13 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsTheatreFormer Little House to Get New Life<p><img alt="" height="219" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/littlehouse_(640x286).jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The former Little House of Boynton Beach, vacant since Chrissy Benoit shut it down last year, will become a pizza joint owned by the founder of Mastino Italian Soul Food in Delray Beach.</p> <p>The name and opening date are still up in the air, but Salvatore Campanile will reportedly turn out Neapolitan-style pizzas and other casual Italian dishes from the 800-square-foot space, the 1940’s-vintage former residence dubbed the Ruth Jones Cottage.</p> <p>Along with the one-time Little House, Campanile has also purchased the 96-year-old Oscar Magnuson House with the intent of turning it into a Mediterranean restaurant and grill. Both properties are on East Ocean Avenue in an area the city has long hoped to revitalize with new businesses. Maybe this time they’ll be successful.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 12 May 2015 14:08:00 +0000 & ReviewsWhen the Moon Hits Your Eye: Save the date!<p><img alt="" height="457" src="/site_media/uploads/1803768-dean_martin_400x400-1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Every summer I like to follow Channel 5 weatherman’s Steve Weagle’s bike ride for the Red Cross from Sebastian to Boca Raton —he always stops at my favorite places—Harry &amp; The Natives in Hobe Sound, Old School Square in Delray, and I always want to be there (instead of my couch) when people hand him one of those big old checks for the Red Cross. This year, the termination point in Boca has special significance—Mizner Park, and Jazziz, specifically, will be the location for the Red Cross’ 5<sup>th</sup> Annual South County event—the “21 Club.”</p> <p>And I, for one, love this idea.</p> <p>I was a kid when Dean and Sammy and Frankie tore things up from Miami to Vegas to Hollywood—but I loved the music, the cool, the whole 1950s and '60s attitude they brought to showbiz.  So sign me up for the May 29 event that will feature “21 Club,” a Rat Pack Tribute Show at Jazziz, complete with martinis and Manhattans, lavish dinner stations, a creative silent auction, dancing and unforgettable entertainment. </p> <p>“We’re excited to work with our committee, volunteers, and sponsors to create a different type of event that will enable us to showcase the work that we do every day across South Florida,” says Amy Mauser, regional chief development officer, South Florida.</p> <p>The event will also honor WPTV’s Chief Meteorologist and 16 year Red Cross supporter, Steve Weagle. We are not sure if he’ll wear a skinny tie and smoke Viceroys, but we’re happy he’ll be there with the other legends.</p> <p>Tickets to the 5<sup>th</sup> Annual South County Event are $200 per person and must be purchased in advance. Sponsorship opportunities are still available. For tickets and more information, please contact Anna Erickson at 561/650-9105 or <a href=""></a>. You can also <a href="" target="_blank">click here</a> or visit the event's <a href="" target="_blank">Facebook page</a>.</p>Marie SpeedTue, 12 May 2015 10:50:00 +0000 EventsThe case for Chabad &amp; Australian pines on the chopping block<h3><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/img_0231-2.jpg" width="490"></h3> <h3>The Chabad case</h3> <p>Thursday night surely must have been the first time that anyone speaking in Boca Raton City Hall had quoted George Washington’s letter to the Hebrew Congregation of Newport, Rhode Island.</p> <p>Rabbi Ruvi New read portions of the 1790 letter on behalf of his Chabad East Boca congregation’s petition to build a synagogue, exhibit hall and social center at 770 E. Palmetto Park Road. The Newport congregation had written Washington to express support for his administration. Washington responded, in part, that the government should give “to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance. . .”</p> <p>That was the closest anyone came to raising anti-Semitism as Chabad East Boca had its do-over before the Planning and Zoning Board. Still, the inescapable issue is that a small group of Jewish people—a group that Boca Raton thwarted seven years ago when neighbors east of Mizner Park objected—seeks to build a house of worship on property where the city allows such a use and where city staff and now two reviews by an advisory board say the use is acceptable—including 10 feet of additional height for one building, known as a conditional use—but this time a new set of neighbors object.</p> <p>The chabad had expected city council approval on April 14, after the Planning and Zoning Board’s March 19 recommendation for approval. But a neighbor raised a technical point, which caused a second staff review. As before, the staff recommended approval by the Planning and Zoning Board. At Thursday night’s meeting, after five hours, the board agreed. The hearing lasted about an hour longer than the March 19 hearing. The vote for approval was 5-1 on the site plan and the added height, which was better than the 4-2 vote in March for the added height. Board member Kerry Koen, who voted for the site plan two months ago, this time voted no on the plan and the height.</p> <p>The city council chambers were full long before the 6:30 p.m. start of the hearing. The overflow went to the Community Center next door. Since the hearing was quasi-judicial and speakers testified under oath, Board Chairman William Fairman swore in the overflow via video.</p> <p>As with any hearing that lasts five hours, most speakers were saying essentially the same thing after about one hour. Chabad congregants—they sported red, white and blue T-shirts saying “We The People” and “Support 770”; many wore yarmulkes—said they would respect those in the Riviera and Por La Mar neighborhoods closest to the site at 770 E. Palmetto Park Road. Rabbi New said he had contacted the neighbors in March to set up meetings or speak by phone. Those neighbors, though, argue that the project would clog their streets with traffic and be incompatible with Boca’s “seaside village,” the area between the Palmetto Park bridge and the beach.</p> <p><em>Let’s take the traffic issue first.</em></p> <p>Palmetto Park is a county road, which means county staff must review the project to see if it would meet traffic performance standards for the road. The county has decided that the chabad would. The project had to undergo review as a tourist attraction, because of the planned “My Israel” exhibit. Doug Hess, Boca Raton’s chief traffic engineer, said at Thursday’s hearing that a retail or office project—both of which are allowed on the property— would generate more traffic.</p> <p>Chabad services, though, would draw people on Saturdays, when traffic on Palmetto Park picks up because of all the people going to the beach. Also, the exhibit hall would draw non-congregants, some of whom might come on buses.</p> <p>So city staff’s recommendation for approval hinges on Chabad East Boca taking several measures to ease the traffic impact. The Planning &amp; Zoning Board proposed and approved three others at the March 19 hearing. Another, which would limit the size of buses, was added Thursday night. The chabad would build an underground garage. Chabad East Boca is Orthodox, and some congregants will walk to services. The congregation couldn’t use multiple venues simultaneously and would have to limit attendance at High Holy Days services.</p> <p>The neighbors are not persuaded, saying that traffic can back up now on Palmetto Park Road, causing delays for drivers trying to turn west and go over the bridge. The neighbors envision congregants and visitors eschewing a left turn out of the chabad and turning onto Southeast Olive Way to navigate west to Spanish Trail, then north to Boca Raton Road and then right on Northeast Olive Way so they could make a right turn on Palmetto Park to the bridge.</p> <p>Board member Richard Coffin dismissed such a scenario by saying that such a roundabout trip covers half a mile. I made the trip, and he’s right. Coffin also was right to point out that the clearance on Spanish Trail under the bridge is a very low 7.5 feet.</p> <p><em>The other issue is that extra 10 feet of height above the 30-foot limit.</em></p> <p>Any such conditional use must meet several requirements in Section 28-102 of Boca Raton’s city code. The most pertinent is that the use is “compatible with present. . .development. . .in the area. . .”</p> <p>One neighbor tried to be diplomatic by saying, in essence, that Rabbi New has a great “vision,” but that he should build it somewhere else. The rabbi would respond that he tried to do so, only to have the city block him over new rules on parking.</p> <p>Let us assume that the most critical neighbors—those with the signs in their yards—would oppose any project, not just this particular house of worship. Let us assume that there is no “bigotry” or “persecution” at work. If so, they could be worried not just about Chabad East Boca but about Palmetto Promenade and a Houston’s restaurant that might open on the Wildflower property. Both sites are on the west side of the bridge, but both pose traffic issues; this summer a consultant will study the impact from a restaurant.</p> <p>Even accounting for those concerns, however, the city council—which will decide on Chabad East Boca at its May 27 meeting—can’t reject a project that fulfills the law just because neighbors don’t want it. One board member asked how the city would enforce the conditions attached to approval. The answer: The same way the city enforces similar conditions for <em>any other house of worship</em>. (Italics mine.) The neighbors have brought considerable passion to this issue, and they may also bring a lawsuit. They have yet to bring a persuasive case.</p> <h3>Judging the Judge</h3> <p>The Florida Supreme Court just did something that is fairly rare but more than fairly good: it rejected a plea deal for a judge who broke the law.</p> <p>On Nov. 5, 2013, Boca Raton police stopped Broward County Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Imperato after she had attended a social function for judges and lawyers. According to police, Imperato’s car had been swerving so badly that it nearly struck another vehicle. At a red light, Imperato stopped six lengths behind another car.</p> <p>When the officer questioned her, Imperato first replied that she was a judge and refused to leave the car. She also refused a blood-alcohol test. Imperato was convicted of driving under the influence and of reckless driving. She got 20 days under house arrest, a year’s probation and $2,531 in fines and court costs.</p> <p>Her case went to the Judicial Qualifications Commission, which investigates judges accused of illegal and/or unethical behavior. If a JQC-appointed lawyer finds probable cause, a hearing is supposed to follow. It’s basically a trial. If the judge is found guilty, a recommendation for reprimand, removal or some other sanction goes to the high court.</p> <p>For nearly three decades, the commission has drawn criticism for seeking to cut deals with judges and avoid a full hearing. In the 1980s, the commission allowed a Palm Beach County judge with a drinking problem to hang on for 14 months so he could retire, though he was unfit to serve. Nothing became public until after the judge retired.</p> <p>In lieu of a hearing on Imperato, the commission recommended that she receive a reprimand, a $5,000 fine, a 20-day unpaid suspension and an alcohol evaluation. According to the JQC report, Imperato has been in counseling for a year and has been alcohol-free. All this supposedly would be in “the best interest of justice and sound judicial administration.”</p> <p>Actually, it would be in the best interest of Cynthia Imperato, who would keep her job without a public inquiry into what happened that night in Boca. The court disagreed. Unanimously. The justices kicked back the proposed settlement and ordered a hearing so that “in determining the appropriate sanction, (they) will be apprised of all the facts and circumstances bearing on the violation.” In other words: no secret deal for a judge.</p> <h3>Pining for the pines</h3> <p>What is it about Australian pines? Sure, it can eerily melodic when the wind curls through them, but the trees aren’t true pines. The state classifies them as weeds—noxious weeds, to boot—and as an invasive species, brought to Florida and planted as windbreaks. The irony is that Australian pines have such shallow root systems that they could turn into flying missiles during a storm.</p> <p>Yet on tonight’s Boca Raton City Council agenda is yet another plea to keep some of these high-class weeds, despite the city’s longstanding program to remove them. The petition comes from Royal Palm Yacht and Country Club, which opposes the decision of the Development Services Department—which the Environmental Control Hearing Board affirmed—that the club take out the row of pines at its marina. The city won’t issue a permit for work on the marina if the non-pine pines stay.</p> <p>The club makes five arguments for keeping the weeds, one being that they are “attractive and effective.” Not only does city staff swat those arguments away—pointing out, among other things, that the weeds are gone from Red Reef and Sugar Sand parks—the Environmental Control Hearing Board rejected the appeal of the staff decision, 4-0.</p> <p>Boca has been here before on Australian pines. Then-Mayor Susan Whelchel intervened when neighbors protested the county’s plan to remove the weeds from South Inlet Park. And in the 1990s Gulf Stream famously got the Legislature to approve a special exemption for the Australian pines that form a canopy over A1A.</p> <p>Of course, some year-round Floridians regard snowbirds as an invasive species. But they pay taxes, don’t ask as much in services, and usually are out of town during hurricane season.  </p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong><em>Randy Schultz</em></strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald and </em><em>Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>  </p>Randy SchultzTue, 12 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: May 12 to 18<p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="241" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/built_to_spill_--_kelly_broich_2_.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Built to Spill</strong></p> <p>Where: Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $26</p> <p>Contact: 954/564-1074, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Leave it up to Idaho indie rockers Built to Spill, on the day after the release of their latest studio album “Untethered Moon,” to play a show almost entirely composed of cover songs—with music from the Clash, Metallica and Neil Young—and with nothing from the new record. Then again, eccentricity and unpredictability, in terms of both set lists and album releases, is kinda Built to Spill’s thing. The five-piece group of guitar gods, whose sound marries indie-pop minimalism with long-form jam noodling, plays a different set every night, resurrecting tunes from its earliest records alongside its latest offerings. The masterful “Untethered Moon,” which one critic cited as the band’s best album since 1999’s seminal “Keep it Like a Secret,” is the group’s first in six years and is the first Built to Spill album with new band members Steve Gere and Jason Albertini, whose skills are well displayed on such furious epics as “When I’m Blind” and “All Our Songs.”</p> <p>THURSDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="254" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/magician.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Justin Willman</strong></p> <p>Where: Fort Lauderdale Improv, 5700 Seminole Way, Hollywood</p> <p>When: Various show times</p> <p>Cost: $20, with a two-drink minimum</p> <p>Contact: 954/981-5653, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>If hosting a Scrabble-themed game show (the short-lived “Scrabble Showdown,” in 2011 and 2012) were Justin Willman’s only accomplishment, he would deserve a historical footnote for helping to democratize the greatest board game ever invented. Beyond that, he’s a full-blown renaissance geek whose various skills have made him a much sought-after talent in the fields of comedy, magic and television hosting. The Missouri native and longtime host of the Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars” began learning magic at age 12, after an attempt to impress local girls by riding a bicycle while wearing rollerblades led to the breaking of both of his arms. Magic became his recuperative therapy, and he’s never stopped; his style is to disarm you with seemingly spontaneous quips while performing invisible, and stunning, trickery. It has worked on celebrities from Hugh Jackman and Ellen DeGeneres to President Obama, when he performed at the White House in 2011. Catch both sides of Willman—the magician and the comedian—at this four-night stint in Hollywood, in a dazzling program that could only be improved by the addition of cupcakes.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="394" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/poster_show74.jpg" width="254"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill”</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Dramaworks, 201 Clematis St., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $55-$77</p> <p>Contact: 561/514-4042, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Long before Judy Garland, Johnny Cash and Woody Guthrie enjoyed theatrical productions celebrating their life and music, there was “Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill,” the 1986 show about Billie Holiday that arguably started the entire subgenre. Biography and concert blend in Lainie Robertson’s musical-play hybrid, as Holiday takes the stage at a seedy Philadelphia bar in 1959, just a few months before she would shed her mortal coil at age 44. In between performances of iconic tunes such as “Strange Fruit,” “God Bless the Child” and “I Wonder Where Our Love Has Gone,” Holiday discusses her problems with men, her drug addiction, her musical influences, her fraught relationship with her mother, and the racism she had encountered on tour. It takes a special actress to pull off both the monologues and the indelible jazz vocals; let’s hope Dramaworks’ selection, Tracey Conyer Lee, can channel the same passion, pain and precision that Audra McDonald brought to the show’s 2014 Broadway premiere.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="536" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/cep1uo5w0aav7pm.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Betrayal”</strong></p> <p>Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $45</p> <p>Contact: 305/949-6722, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Theater producers can’t stay away from this gut-wrenching Harold Pinter masterpiece for very long. It premiered in 1980, was revived on Broadway 20 years later, and was produced yet again on Broadway in 2013, in a celebrated production with Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz. Presented as a love triangle between a husband, his wife, and his wife’s lover, who is also the husband’s best friend, the play includes betrayals within betrayals, and it is presented in a reverse-chronological structure that is still radical to this day: It begins in 1977, as the affair has dissipated, and ends in 1968, amid the initial pangs of forbidden lust. Characterized by Pinter’s famously economic dialogue, complete with protracted pauses, the play has an autobiographical history, have been inspired by the playwright’s own seven-year affair with a BBC Television reporter. Zoetic Stage director Stuart Meltzer has promised a “fresh take” on this great drama, which stars top local actors Nicholas Richberg, Amy McKenna and Chaz Mena. It runs through May 31.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="254" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/club.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “The Book Club Play”</strong></p> <p>Where: Actors’ Playhouse, 280 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $45-$53</p> <p>Contact: 305/444-9293, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>You never know what various and sundry secrets will emerge when you get a bunch of smart people in a room to discuss “Moby-Dick” or “The Age of Innocence” or—God help us—“Twilight.” That’s the dramatic crux of Karen Zacarias’ “The Book Club Play,” a hit at regional theaters across the country, which makes its South Florida debut this weekend at Actors’ Playhouse. The play is set in the living room of affluent club leader Ana, who gathers her recalcitrant husband and four friends together for discussions that, inevitably, spiral into veiled resentments or uncomfortable truths. I’ve read the script, and it’s laugh-out-loud funny. With a cast this unimpeachable—Michael McKeever, Lela Elam, Paul Tei, Niki Fridh, Stephen G. Anthony and Barbara Sloan—expect the theatrical equivalent of a compelling page-turner. It runs through June 7.</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="300" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/matt-shepard2.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Screenings of “Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine”</strong></p> <p>Where: O Cinema, 9806 N.E. Second Ave., Miami Shores</p> <p>When: Various show times</p> <p>Cost: $7.50-$11</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The greatest movie tearjerker of 2015 is likely not a product of Hollywood. It’s this devastating documentary, which revisits the 1998 murder of University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard. Shepard was killed because he was gay, and his death became so much of a symbol and cause celebre for the tolerance movement that it’s easy to forget the flesh-and-blood person that sacrificed so much for awareness and, eventually, progress. Michele Josue, a close friend of Shepard’s, directs this personal and searching documentary, which digs through the emotional and physical wreckage of this galvanizing hate crime by interviewing fellow friends, family and even the bartender who served Shepard’s last drink. The ultimate result is, somehow, a moving study in forgiveness.</p> <p>SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/israelfest-web.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Israel Fest 2015</strong></p> <p>Where: Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 3 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Thousands of attendees are expected to turn out at this celebration of Israel’s 67<sup>th</sup> anniversary of statehood, sponsored by the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County. The event will feature a rare performance by multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Josh Nelson and his wife and fellow musician Neshama Carlebach—who have been called the prince and princess of Jewish music—as well as Pardes, a Jewish rock band that combines spiritual content with a dollop of Mediterranean and Hassidic influence. There also will be kosher food for sale, and children can enjoy a petting zoo, face paining and fun and games from the PJ Library of South Palm Beach County. The Boca Raton Museum of Art will even offer free first-floor admission to festival guests, in honor of its stunning exhibition by Israeli-born artist Izhar Patkin.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/edk.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Ed Kowalczyk</strong></p> <p>Where: Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $32.10</p> <p>Contact: 954/564-1074, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The expected two-year hiatus of modern rockers Live, which was announced in 2009, soon became a permanent schism, resulting in one of the decade’s most acrimonious musical breakups, complete with a lawsuit. Singer Ed Kowalczyk has responded by dropping the Live moniker and striking out on his own as a solo artist, releasing three unassuming albums in the Aughts. But this year, he’s re-digging the Live well for this intimate acoustic tour in celebration of the 20<sup>th</sup> anniversary of Live’s iconic album “Throwing Copper,” which sold 8 million copies and put Kowalczyk on the musical map. The tour is awash in nostalgia, with vintage video clips kicking off the show and Kowalczyk performing “Throwing Copper” in its entirety, in sequence, including the bonus track. This means you’ll get to hear “Lightning Crashes,” “I Alone” “All Over You” and other tunes that, once upon a time, received regular rotation on that endangered species called rock radio.</p>John ThomasonMon, 11 May 2015 15:23:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsStaff Picks: Food Always on Our Minds<p><strong>Fresh Hearts of Palm Salad at Cap's Place</strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/capsplace.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>"Take a little motor launch over to this ca. 1928 landmark (on the National Register of Historic Places). Order fresh seafood and have a drink in the sloping old bar."</p> <p>(2765 N.E. 28th Court, Lighthouse Point // <a target="_blank">954/941-0418</a>)</p> <p><strong>Short Rib at Michael's Genuine Food &amp; Drink</strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Freelance Web Editor</em></p> <p>"It's officially listed on the menu as 'slow-roasted and grilled harris ranch beef short rib,' but I call it the best short rib I've ever had. Not to miss when visiting Michael's trendy Design District restaurant."</p> <p>(130 N.E. 40th St., Miami // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <center> <p>For more staff picks, <a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">click here</a>.</p> </center>magazineFri, 08 May 2015 09:00:00 +0000 Reviews: &quot;The D Train,&quot; &quot;Felix and Meira&quot;<p>I think I can speak for most moviegoers when I say that we’re tired of the bromance—the now-tiresome subgenre of American comedy popularized in the 2000s and predicated on platonic love between straight men. There are only so many times we can watch Paul Rudd and Jason Segel or Seth Rogan or Jonah Hill or James Franco or Christopher Mintz-Plasse or Will Ferrell or Mark Duplass share hugs and bong hits before deja vu kicks in. For all its faults, Jarrad Paul’s debut comedy “The D Train,” which opens in most theaters today, is a new kind of bromance, one that finally takes the genre to its logical extreme—sexual intercourse between two brotastic guys, or at least two guys pretending to be brotastic.</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/dtrain.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Jack Black plays Dan Landsman, a hapless square, professional pushover and married father of two, who works at an antiquated Philadelphia consulting firm and chairs his high school’s alumni committee by night. Desperate to be liked by his more sociable colleagues, he concocts a plan that is sure to win him kudos: To raise the committee’s woeful attendance for its forthcoming 20-year reunion, he’s going to convince their class’s most popular jock, Oliver Lawless (James Marsden), an actor who recently landed a national ad campaign in Los Angeles, to appear at the reunion and lend it celebrity cachet.</p> <p>Soon enough, Dan is on a plane to L.A., his clueless Luddite boss in tow (a winningly deadpan Jeffrey Tambor), to win over Oliver under the phony auspices of a business meeting. The events of Los Angeles are dramatic—Oliver, it turns out, is an insecure, bisexual cokehead—and the lies that follow compound like miles on a treadmill hurtling toward professional and personal disintegration.</p> <p>As the reunion looms, there’s a raw, uncomfortable sensitivity in the way Paul films the interactions between the two men, with the memory of their coitus burrowing far deeper into Dan’s psyche than he’d prefer. This discomfort underscores the continuing laugh lines and makes “The D Train” an admirably progressive look at sexuality in the 21<sup>st</sup> century.</p> <p>The more you think about it, though, the more nits become available to pick. Oliver’s surname “Lawless” is symptomatic of the film’s tendency for on-the-nose reductionism. Cliches, which are scant at first, pile up egregiously toward the end, when the credible reality Paul had built up collapses to accommodate his plot points. And even Tambor, who steals every scene as Dan’s technophobic boss (in an admittedly nice touch, there’s a 30-year-old Tab soda machine languishing in an office space the color of a ‘70s Buick), plays a character whose convenient naivety becomes too implausible to accept.</p> <p>There’s even, finally, a dreaded “I learned something today”-style montage that feels shamefully tacked-on—a treacly, insincere coda to a mostly genuine button-pusher of a film.</p> <p><strong> ***</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/b5edrjfieaaxpjv.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>The title characters in Maxime Giroux’s touching drama “Felix and Meira” don’t meet-cute, like many couples in the movies. They just meet because they’re both lonely, they both prowl the same haunt—a coffeehouse in their shared neighborhood in Quebec—and they share an affinity for art.</p> <p>Other than that, their lives couldn’t be more different. Felix (Martin Dubreuil) is a single, borderline-depressed fortysomething who has just watched his estranged father pass away, the old man’s lifelong regrets remaining unexpressed. The orthodox Meira (Hadas Yaron) is stifled in a dour marriage to a Hasidic man, and yearns to break from her family’s religious prohibitions.</p> <p>The movie is not, as this description suggests, a barrel of laughs. Its colors are the muted tones of lackluster lives, and at first, the film is demonstrably slow to the point of near-funerary proportions. But the more time you invest in “Felix and Meira,” the more it pays off, and the more its unhurried approach seems the only way to honor the gravity of a romance that buds amid insecurities and clandestine shame. When the courtship of modern-day Hollywood films consists of barroom glances that cut to romps in the sack, it’s pleasing to see a movie that regards patience as a sensual virtue.</p> <p>“Felix and Meira” also deserves credit for respecting the third character in this triangle, Meira’s husband Shulem (Luzer Twersky). He’s the gatekeeper of her cloistered existence, but he’s never demonized. When Meira strays from their marriage, Giroux recognizes the costs of her self-actualization as well as its benefits. Shulem becomes the movie’s most tragic figure, and in its most touching scene, he finds himself missing the affectations that used to bother him, just like any partner who takes someone for granted until she’s gone. This film is heavy on literary metaphors and symbolism, some more obvious than others, but their potency is only as effective as these three subtle, subdued and altogether brilliant performances. </p>John ThomasonFri, 08 May 2015 08:00:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMother&#39;s Day Dining, Part III<p><img alt="" height="291" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/mothers-day2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>And still more dining options for Mom. . .</p> <p>If Mom is trying to eat healthier, maybe you should take her to Boca’s still wildly popular <strong>Farmer’s Table</strong> (<em>1901 N. Military Trail, 561/417-5836</em>). A la carte brunch is from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., dinner from 5 to 10 p.m., with (brunch) dishes as varied as goji berry-granola parfait and skillet-poached eggs with bacon and hollandaise and (at dinner) vegan shepherd’s pie and braised short rib with mushroom bordelaise.</p> <p>In the same lighter-healthier vein is <strong>Farmhouse Kitchen</strong> (<em>399 S.E. Mizner Blvd., 561/826-2625</em>), the former Table 42 in Boca’s Royal Palm Place. Brunch is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and features a la carte specialties like cracked wheat toast with ricotta and crushed avocado and steak ‘n’ eggs with potato-squash hash. Dinner runs from 3 to 10 p.m. and boasts items like maple miso-glazed salmon and char-grilled skirt steak with kale pesto.</p> <p>Palm Beach’s swanky <strong>Cafe Boulud</strong> (<em>301 Australian Ave., 561/655-6060</em>) is hosting its typically elegant Mom’s Day buffet brunch. It’s $85 per adult, $45 for kids and goes from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Think herb-crusted prime rib and raspberry-chocolate sacher torte. Dinner from 5:30 to 10 p.m. is a la carte, with choices like grilled local swordfish with parsley coulis and asparagus and rock shrimp risotto.</p> <p>A lavish buffet brunch is the deal at <strong>Bistro 1001</strong> (<em>1001 Okeechobee Ave., 561/833-1234</em>) in West Palm. Cost is $55 for adults and $27.50 for children. From noon to 5 p.m. Mom can chow down on an array of brunchables, from peel ‘n’ eat shrimp and fusilli pasta salad to roasted turkey with giblet gravy and seared grouper medallions to cookies, brownies and DIY ice cream sundaes from the ice cream sundae bar.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 08 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsUpcoming EventsUpdates: Atlantic Crossing, Trash, the Inspector General and Chabad<h3><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/site-plan.jpg" width="490"></h3> <h3>MIA road in Delray</h3> <p>The dispute over a missing road in Delray Beach’s Atlantic Crossing project may end with a settlement that returns the road.</p> <p>At Tuesday night’s meeting, the city commission was prepared to hire an outside lawyer who would render an opinion as to whether the commission, as the developers contend, abandoned that road – Atlantic Court – when it approved a new Atlantic Crossing site plan in January 2014. Instead, Mayor Cary Glickstein revealed that he has been negotiating with the developers to reach a settlement that would restore Atlantic Court to the site plan in exchange for the end of litigation.</p> <p>Getting to that settlement could be tricky. The developers might have to sue the city, thus creating an instrument for a settlement. Discussions about lawsuits are exempt from the Sunshine Law and can take place in secret. Since the site plan is at issue, such a scenario could mean a discussion out of the public eye regarding a project that has been a major public issue. The city and the developers would have to resolve that issue.</p> <p>Still, restoration of Atlantic Court would represent a victory for residents who, as Commissioner Shelly Petrolia put it, “just would not let this die.” For those who have opposed Atlantic Court since a prior commission approved it in December 2012, Atlantic Court is the only possible victory at this point.</p> <p>A settlement would not make Atlantic Court smaller and perhaps more compatible with the neighborhood. Any attempt to modify the terms of what the commission approved in 2012 would be illegal. Nor would a settlement end fears that Atlantic Crossing, which will occupy two blocks on the north side of East Atlantic Avenue, essentially will cut off Veterans Park.</p> <p>But Atlantic Court could ease traffic problems by providing access to the project from the west. Return of the road would mean that Delray Beach had not given up a road and some alleys for Atlantic Crossing while receiving nothing in return. A successful settlement would show residents that “they have a voice,” Petrolia said.</p> <p>My sense from speaking with neighbors who opposed Atlantic Crossing is that they would accept a resolution that restores Atlantic Court. In return, Atlantic Crossing’s developers would be able to start construction with certainty. They also would sow some goodwill.</p> <p>After all the discussion, however, the commission did choose a law firm that to render an opinion if the settlement negotiations fail. Using the familiar “Untouchables” analogy, Petrolia said Glickstein “now will be going to a gunfight with a gun, not a knife.” The law firm—Weiss Sarota Helfman Cole &amp; Bierman—is the one whose opinion in 2013 helped the city void its trash-hauling contract with Waste Management and get a cheaper deal.</p> <p>Glickstein told me in an email Wednesday that he will next meet with the developers “when they have a more detailed plan. I believe they are working in good faith and diligently, as they understand the sense of urgency.” The hope is for a final decision at the June 2 commission meeting or at a special meeting near that date.</p> <h3>Trash refund</h3> <p>Speaking of that trash contract, the city commission overruled Delray Beach’s chief financial officer Tuesday night and ordered a full refund for customers who had been overcharged in the previous contract.</p> <p>The overpayments—which took place over 16 years for the purchase of trash carts in residential areas—amounted to $1.7 million. The recommendation was that the city keep $900,000 as a reserve fund to buy carts in an emergency. Commissioners noted that the new hauler, Southern Waste Systems, would be providing carts, and so they decided that residents deserved the full $1.7 million.</p> <h3>Another MIA item: Al Jacquet</h3> <p>Let us note for the record that Delray Beach City Commissioner Al Jacquet missed last week’s workshop meeting with Community Redevelopment Agency board members and staffers. The meeting became especially important when Mayor Cary Glickstein proposed a change in CRA boundaries that would mean less property tax revenue for the agency and more for the city. I will have more about this development next week.</p> <p>Jacquet also missed the commission’s February goal-setting session, as he missed the meeting last November at which commissioners chose City Manager Don Cooper and the meeting at which they chose a new trash hauler. Officially, Jacquet is term-limited in March 2017. Practically speaking, he seems to be halfway out the door.</p> <p>On the other hand, as some residents have suggested to me, the commission may work better without such an obviously uninterested member. Addition by subtraction.</p> <h3>Inspector General update</h3> <p>Predictably, the 13 cities suing over financing of Palm Beach County’s Office of Inspector General have decided to appeal last month’s trial-court ruling against them. Delray Beach has withdrawn from the lawsuit. Boca Raton remains a plaintiff. The city passed a resolution in October 2011 to join the litigation. Joining the appeal, Mayor Susan Haynie said, “required no action.”</p> <p>Roughly one year before the council approved that resolution, nearly 75 percent of Boca Raton voters told the city to give the Office of Inspector General jurisdiction over Boca and for the city to pay for it.</p> <h3>And Chabad</h3> <p>Not every meeting of the Boca Raton Planning &amp; Zoning Board features a law school professor who specializes in church-state issues. But tonight’s board meeting will be far from routine.</p> <p>Marci Hamilton won’t actually be at the meeting. Several beachside residents, however, have retained the woman who holds the Paul Verkuil Chair in Public Law at Yeshiva University’s Cardozo Law School. Their issue is the proposed Chabad East Boca synagogue that is proposed for East Palmetto Park road between the bridge and the beach. The project secured unanimous approval from the Planning &amp; Zoning Board in March and was before the city council on April 14, with a recommendation from city staff for approval. Then there was an apparent discrepancy about square footage, and the council asked for a second look.</p> <p>That delay has allowed neighbors to renew their opposition, based supposedly on traffic concerns, not that it would be a house of worship. “This was originally portrayed as a boutique” synagogue, Hamilton told me by phone on Wednesday. When neighbors heard of plans for Chabad East Boca’s “My Israel” museum, “It looked more like a tourist attraction,” making some neighbors envision tour buses regularly disgorging visitors and exacerbating backups that occur when the bridge opens. “There were multiple uses,” Hamilton said.</p> <p>In fact, the staff report anticipated 168 new vehicle trips each day. The city also attached conditions to the approval that are designed to minimize the impact from traffic. Architect Derek Vander Ploeg, who represents the Chabad, said the city limited museum attendance to 30 at one time, and that Rabbi Ruvi New estimates that museum attendance will be roughly 200 per month.</p> <p>According to Vander Ploeg, city staff had questions about four items related to operation. The new recommendation to the Planning &amp; Zoning Board, he said, will be the same as the first: to approve. The staff also remains fine with the additional 10 feet in height.    </p> <p>Some nearly homeowners have complained that they would like to see some other project on that site—770 East Palmetto Park Road—that would complement what residents see as a beach-oriented, mini-downtown. No one else, however, is proposing such a project, and the zoning allows a house of worship.</p> <p>As it happens, Thursday is a Jewish holiday, and Chabad East Boca already had planned a gathering. It now will be partly a rally, and the event will start earlier, so congregants can get to City Hall by 6 p.m. Expect a packed meeting, with emotions high. It will be a preview of what happens when the issue gets to the city council.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong><em>Randy Schultz</em></strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald and </em><em>Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>  </p>Randy SchultzThu, 07 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityTheater Review: &quot;Anything Goes&quot; at Broward Center<p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/billy-hope.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>When you have trouble making out the first words that escape the actors’ microphones, you know you’re in for a long night. And the national tour of “Anything Goes,” at the Broward Center, is a very long night.</p> <p>Set aboard a luxury ocean liner and chronicling the madcap schemes and desires of its caricatured guests, “Anything Goes” is a proudly insubstantial musical, the kind of unabashed escapism that betrays its Depression-era origins (it debuted in 1934). The characters are outsized archetypes: Reno Sweeney (Emma Stratton), a brassy nightclub singer; her friend and potential love interest Billy Crocker (Brian Kinsky), a mid-level Wall Street drone with his heart set on Hope Harcourt (Rachelle Rose Clark), an engaged heiress; Lord Evelyn Oakleigh (Richard Lindenfelzer), Hope’s foppish foreign fiancée; Moonface Martin (Dennis Setteducati), a small-time gangster who has snuck aboard the ship with his slutty moll (Mychal Phillips); etc. The plot writes itself, entangling and orienting its romantically confused cruisers with about as much sense as a cubist painting. Suffice it to say it ends in three weddings.</p> <p>The sound problems are the show’s most immediate hurdle, and they instantly distract you from the story. The songs are by Cole Porter, and they’re far cleverer than the book’s clunky punch lines, but only if can make out all of Porter’s witty cultural references and deft wordplay. Instead, numbers like “You’re the Top” and “Friendship” are drowned out by the band, thanks to an uneven sound mix. There’s even tinny microphone feedback in some of the spoken dialogue. Forgive me for expecting that in a Broadway Across America production—and I don’t make it to most of these—at least the tech elements would be top-notch.</p> <p>These issues improve in the second act, but over-arching problems remain, namely the base-level pedestrianism of Kathleen Marshall’s direction and choreography. Audiences expecting to be dazzled (many of whom are still reeling from “Pippin,” after all) will endure a first act of largely unchallenging steps presented with an air of secondhand familiarity. It isn’t until the very end of Act One that an inspired tap number sets the deck ablaze.</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/ag_7370_anythinggoes-resized.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The second act, which has about 15 minutes of story and 45 minutes of padding, has an opposite problem: Marshall tries too hard to elicit pizzazz, choreographing routines that far overstay their welcome, despite the considerable energy and sweat equity of its proficient leads and ensemble. This didn’t have to be the case: cornball as this material is, Marcia Milgrom Dodge directed a whizbang production for Maltz Jupiter Theatre in 2010 that featured inventive choreography and, moreover, was genuinely funny. Just compare her fleet-footed take on the jailhouse pop of Moonface’s “Be Like the Bluebird” to Marshall’s staid and boring interpretation.</p> <p>Stratton is well-cast as Reno Sweeney; she’s a triple-threat talent with a grand set of pipes and an inexhaustible stage presence, who is tasked with, and succeeds in, carrying a couple of group numbers all by herself. Paired with the meek Kinsky, however, she’s a man-eater, and her attraction to his nasally voiced broker is never convincing. She outdances him, too, and so does the lithe Rachelle Rose Clark. Kinsky’s movements are labored while theirs seem effortless, while his singing voice is, to be charitable, an acquired taste.</p> <p>Derek McLane designed the handsome set of a two-story ship’s exterior and its various boxy, wheeled-in staterooms, though even this has the flimsy appearance of expenses spared—some of the netted backdrop that suspends from the ceiling has large holes in it. Anthony Pearson’s lighting design is one of the show’s few unqualified successes; the shifting palette of colors illuminating from the portholes of the cabins sets a perfect ambience. In a production this misbegotten, I was thankful for whatever small triumph I could find.</p> <p><em>“Anything Goes” runs through May 17 at Broward Center’s Au-Rene Theater, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale. Tickets cost $30-$85. Call 954/462-0222 or visit</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 06 May 2015 14:28:49 +0000 & EventsTheatreGood-For-You Beauty and Dental Products<p><img alt="" height="36" src="/site_media/uploads/greengoddess.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The skin is your largest organ – and whatever you put on it gets absorbed into your tissue, goes into you blood stream and then passes through your blood almost as if you just ate it. When it comes to beauty products, my rule of thumb is that if I wouldn't eat it, I shouldn't put it on my skin either. Here are my favorite products that won't make you sacrifice your health for beauty.</p> <p><strong>Skin moisturizer </strong></p> <p>For many years my #1 skin moisturizer has been coconut oil. Yes, the same coconut oil that I get from Nutiva brand to eat, I put on my skin. Coconut oil is rich in moisturizing fats that keep your skin soft and smooth. The only caveat is that excess oil can rub off on your clothes, so for best results, use coconut oil before going to bed.</p> <p><strong>Makeup </strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="381" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/jane-iredale.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>It may come as a shock, but conventional makeup products are not so pretty as they seem. They contain many harmful chemicals that can cause poor skin tone, loss of elasticity and even diseases.</p> <p>I suggest we stop suffering for beauty and get the best of both worlds. Jane Iredale is one of my favorite brands. It carries everything from foundations and mascaras to gorgeous eye shadows and sparkly lip glosses. All products are mineral-based, so they won't irritate your skin or clog your pores, letting your skin breathe. Best of all, because of that mineral base, they also work as sunblock! Check out the Jane Iredale difference at <span></span></p> <p><strong>Dental products</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="210" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/copy-of-icphoto-5-700x300.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Many people use fluoride-based toothpaste, thinking it’s good for our health. Unfortunately that may not be the case. Did you know that fluoride has been shown to act as an endocrine disruptor and has been linked to health problems like arthritis, thyroid disease, disrupted immune system and even dementia?</p> <p>Why take chances when you can have your strong pearly-whites with something better than fluoride? Meet the Miami-based Dr. Sharp Dentistry line of the cleanest products on the market. They’re fluoride-free, SLS-free, paraben-free and alcohol-free. They are made with natural ingredients that will give you strong, beautiful teeth without compromising your health. I love their attention to detail - even their Green Tea Dental Tape contains anti- inflammatory, antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. </p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><span></span></a></p> <p><strong>Deodorant</strong></p> <p>Because conventional deodorants contain harmful aluminum that has been linked to diseases like cancer and Alzheimer's, I suggest choosing a better-for-you option. Try a natural and very effective deodorant that’s made from coconut! Here is a link to a <a href="" target="_blank"><span>3-minute video</span></a> on how to make your own or you can simply buy one from Primal Pit Paste and don't sweat it. <a href=""><span></span></a></p> <p><strong>Haircare </strong></p> <p>Hair products are often overlooked when it comes to ingredients. After all, if we’re not putting them on our skin, why should we care? The problem is that we still handle hair products with our hands, exposing our skin to chemicals. Just recently, I tried the Giovanni haircare line and must say I was impressed.</p> <p>As a professional hair stylist, Arthur Giovanni noticed his hands getting irritated from conventional hair products. He decided to create his own line with products free of parabens, sulfate or animal by-products. Everything is manufactured in the U.S., and created with a base of vitamins, herbs, minerals, proteins and other nutrients. After one use of his hair products my hair was shiny and soft! <a href="" target="_blank"><span></span></a></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more from the Green Goddess, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-green-goddess/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>About Alina Z.</strong>
</em></p> <p><em>Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida,  Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at, visit Alina’s website at <a href=""></a>, or follow her on Facebook (<a href="/admin/blog/blogpost/10225/"></a>) or Twitter (<a href="">@CoutureFood</a>). The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at <a href="/"></a>.</em></p> <p><span><br></span></p>Alina Z.Wed, 06 May 2015 08:30:00 +0000;s Day Dining, Part II<p><img alt="" height="291" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/mothers-day2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>But wait, there’s more. . .</p> <p>Give Mom a brunch with a view at <strong>Hudson at Waterway East</strong> <em>(900 E. Atlantic Ave., 561/303-1343</em>), the sleek modern American eatery with killer Intracoastal views in Delray Beach. On Mother’s Day—Sunday, May10, for you calendar-impaired—they’ll be kicking off their brunch menu, so take Mom and nosh on dishes like crabcake eggs benedict and lobster club sammie, washed down with drink specials like bottomless pineapple-coconut mimosas.</p> <p>If Mom’s a music lover, there’s the 5th annual Jazz Brunch at Boca’s <strong>Pavilion Grille</strong> (<em>301 Yamato Road, 561/912-0000</em>). While the Deborah Paiva Jazz Duo churns out some tunes you and Mom can feast on an extensive brunch buffet for $45.95 for adults and $19.95 for the kiddies. There will be omelet, carving and salad stations, lots of Asian and Italian favorites, plus a dessert station and a DIY ice cream sundae bar. Unlimited mimosas for an extra $9.</p> <p>On the other hand, maybe Mom likes movies. Treat her to a chick flick and brunch or lunch at <strong>Bogart’s</strong> (<em>3200 Airport Blvd., 561/544-3044</em>) at the Cinemark Palace 20 theater in Boca Raton. She can eat before, after or even during the movie, brunching it up with chef Aaron Goldberg’s smoked salmon benedict, crispy french toast or blueberry and ricotta pancakes.</p> <p>For an upscale celebration, check out the impressive array of brunchables at <strong>Temple Orange</strong> (<em>100 S. Ocean Blvd., 561/533-6000</em>) in the tony Eau Palm Beach Resort &amp; Spa. For $85 per adult and $25 per kid you can hit up the made-to-order omelet station or carving station with prime rib and roasted turkey breast, or fill up on salad and sushi, cheese and charcuterie, cold and smoked seafood, and all manner of breakfast pastries and desserts.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 05 May 2015 16:29:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsKnow Stroke Signs, Symptoms<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>May is National Stroke Awareness month. Delray Medical Center is among the hospitals in the Tenet Healthcare Florida system offering a free educational lecture about the signs and symptoms of stroke.</p> <p>Sharron Evans, a neuroscience nurse practitioner, will give the presentation on Thursday, May 7, at 10 a.m. at the South County Civic Center (<em>16700 Jog Road, Delray Beach</em>). To sign up, <a href="">click here</a> or call the medical center at 561/498-4440.</p> <p><img alt="" height="454" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/232650_brain_still.jpg" width="454"></p> <p>If you can’t make it, read on. This information could save your life and quality of life.</p> <p>Time is critical when recognizing and acting on the signs of stroke.</p> <p>“Each minute left untreated, a stroke patient loses 1.9 million neurons,” says Marsha Powers, CEO of Tenet’s Florida Region in a Tenet press release.</p> <p>And the sooner treatment is started, the better the chance a person has to live and regain quality of life. To help you remember the warning signs for a stroke, use the acronym created by the American Stroke Association. It’s called FAST, and it stands for the following symptoms:</p> <p>• F is for facial weakness. Can you smile? Is your eye or mouth drooping?</p> <p>• A is for arm weakness. Can you raise both arms?</p> <p>• S is for speech problems. Can you speak clearly and can others understand what you say?</p> <p>• T is for time. Call 9-1-1 if you’re unsure about any of these signs or symptoms. And call quickly!</p> <p><em>Delray Medical Center is among the leading Comprehensive Stroke Centers in South Florida. The medical center has been designated as a Target: Stroke Honor Roll member by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p> <p><em><br></em></p>Lisette HiltonTue, 05 May 2015 08:30:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyHow The Mark got approved and items of note<h3><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/img_0223_rev.jpg" width="490"></h3> <h3>The Mark: Whose fault was it?</h3> <p>A whodunit played out last Thursday in the Boca Raton Community Center, except that the subject wasn’t a body— it was a building.</p> <p>That building is the Mark at Cityscape, the mixed-use project near the intersection of Federal Highway and Palmetto Park Road. It is the first project Boca Raton approved under the city’s Interim Design Guidelines, which were crafted with the goal of producing distinctive, stylish structures that set the city’s downtown apart.</p> <p>But as construction of the Mark neared completion—the developer, Ram Realty, just got the certificate of occupancy —residents and city council members began to complain that the Mark looked no better than structures approved under the old guidelines. Plus, the new guidelines allowed Ram more height in exchange for supposedly producing a project that is pleasing to the eye. Where was the public benefit?</p> <p>So the city’s consultant, Urban Design Associates, scheduled last Thursday’s daylong meeting to pick over the Mark and, in so doing, pick over the new guidelines. Mayor Susan Haynie, who was there as a spectator, summed up the general public sentiment when she told me, “If (the Mark) is what we get from the guidelines, there’s something wrong.”</p> <p>Haynie has a particular interest in the review, since she voted to approve the Mark. The other council holdover who voted for the project is Mike Mullaugh.</p> <p>Eric Osth of Urban Design Associates led the discussion. In language that often was aimed more at professionals than the public—“redevelopment paradigms”—Osth spoke of how his firm had created for Boca Raton a Pattern Book that would guide developers and create a skyline in the best tradition of Addison Mizner. Listening to this discussion of the test project for a better downtown, were, among others, city staffers, members of the Downtown Advisory Committee and architects.</p> <p>Then Osth began to critique the Mark. He said the walkways aren’t pedestrian-friendly. One lamppost is in the middle of a sidewalk. The building’s façade could look better in places. More variation in paint color would make the building look more inviting. Tinted glass in the ground-floor retail space will make people keep walking, rather than stop and look.</p> <p>Yet when the project came before the city council—acting as the Community Redevelopment Agency—on May 21, 2012, the backup material contained a letter to Susan Lesser, a senior planner for the city, from Osth. In the letter, Osth said his firm had reviewed the application and offered some suggestions. Yet the firm’s recommendation was to approve what then was called the Palmetto Park Mixed Use Building. Osth called it “a beautifully designed building and a positive addition to Downtown Boca Raton.”</p> <p>Council members also saw a 5-0 vote for approval by the Planning &amp; Zoning Board. They saw a 6-0 vote for approval by the Community Appearance Board, which is supposed to review the sorts of items Osth considers problems with the Mark. Council members saw a recommendation for approval from City Manager Leif Ahnell, based in part on the Development Services Department’s review of the project. It was the second version of the project, which is part of the roughly 9.5-acre site that also will include the Hyatt Place Hotel.</p> <p>Most of the discussion three years ago focused on the fact that the 208 residential units would be rentals. Council members asked whether the units would be upscale enough to fit Boca’s image. Like the UDA consultants, Haynie saw the project as helpful in accomplishing the city’s long-held goal of connecting Mizner Park and Royal Palm Place. Anthony Majhess, the only dissenting vote, said the project didn’t meet UDA’s guidelines, despite the consultant’s support. Majhess did express hope that the project would be complete before final adoption of the Pattern Book, so the city could make any changes. The Pattern Book, like the guidelines, has not been adopted.</p> <p>The most interested participant at Thursday’s meeting was Juan Caycedo, of RLC Architects. Caycedo designed the Mark, and had to sit while other participants performed an autopsy on a building that hasn’t opened.</p> <p>In an interview Monday, Caycedo defended his design by saying that the critical judgments are premature. “People make places,” he said. “Once you have activity, it will bring life.” When people and business arrive, Boca residents will see “a better pedestrian space.”</p> <p>Caycedo also revealed that some of what UDA’s Osth criticized were not his decisions. The developers chose the outside colors. Caycedo proposed clear glass for the first floor. The developers went with tinted glass. Osth also told me that he still considers the Mark a “beautifully designed building,” but that “there a lot of elements on the implementation side.”</p> <p>Thursday’s discussion identified no single perp in this downtown development whodunit. Still, if the Mark went all through this new process with new guidelines and has surprised in the wrong way, there at least is what Haynie called “disconnect” among the consultants—“UDA talked us into this contract,” Haynie said—city planners, advisory board members and architects. Osth did offer an idea that would seem automatic: regular, early meetings between architects and city planners after approval of a project. “Standard procedure in all cities,” Osth said. Caycedo likes the idea. Why hasn’t Boca Raton been doing that all along?</p> <p>Yet to be completed are two other projects approved under the new guidelines: Via Mizner at Camino Real and Federal Highway and the Hyatt Place Hotel, which drew much early praise last fall. Boca Raton will wait anxiously to see the finished products, because, as Haynie said, “If (the Mark) is a test case” of the Interim Design Guidelines and Pattern Book, “we miserably failed.”</p> <h3>Clarification</h3> <p>In my post for last Thursday, I might have given readers the impression that Boca Raton approved the Palmetto Promenade project – once known as Archstone – under the Interim Design Guidelines. The city adopted them in 2008 as Ordinance 5052. To be clear, the city approved Palmetto Promenade under the old guidelines, which the city adopted in 1992 as Ordinance 4035.</p> <p>Trash rebate?</p> <p>Apparently, not only will Delray Beach save money on the new trash-hauling contract when it begins June 1, some residents will get a refund.</p> <p>According to City Manager Don Cooper, Delray Beach collected about $1.7 million in excessive fees from 1997 to 2013 for carts used in residential curbside pickup. Cooper recommends keeping $900,000 for contingency, in case the carts must be replaced. The rest would go back to residential curbside customers. The city commission takes a first vote on the issue tonight.</p> <h3>A bold idea: Braves at FAU</h3> <p>One important local bill that did get through the Florida Legislature despite the House quitting early last week would allow work to proceed on a second spring training stadium in Palm Beach County. The complex in West Palm Beach, scheduled to open in 2017, will be home to the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals, as Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter is home to the Miami Marlins and the St. Louis Cardinals.</p> <p>The bill is technical; it changes the boundaries of the West Palm Beach Water Catchment Area so construction can start on schedule. The county is negotiating with the Marlins and Cardinals on stadium improvements that would keep the teams—and especially the many Cardinals fans who visit—at Roger Dean through 2045, roughly the lease period for the teams in West Palm Beach.</p> <p>When news of the new stadium deal broke, <em>The Palm Beach Post </em>reported, the Atlanta Braves expressed interest in bringing spring training operations back to the county. The Braves trained at West Palm Beach Municipal Stadium —since demolished—from 1962 until 1997. The Braves bolted for a better deal at Disney World, showing why governments in Florida seek long leases.</p> <p>The chances of the Braves returning are low, for many reasons. But there is one place in Palm Beach County with an existing stadium—Florida Atlantic University. The stadium seats only about 2,000 and would need more seats and other major upgrades. The Braves also would need a minor-league complex.</p> <p>That second stadium will take a large portion of the tourist tax revenue that finances projects whose goal is to draw visitors, but since FAU President John Kelly quickly has become known for thinking big, wouldn’t he at least want to ask, say, the county sports commission if FAU might have a role in going after the Braves?</p> <h3>South Florida less racist</h3> <p>Baltimore has become the latest city to face a gut check on the conditions of its poor, black residents. The examination won’t be any easier just because the mayor and police chief are African-American.</p> <p>With race on people’s minds, it may cheer you to know that based on a recently released study, South Florida is less racist on average than other parts of the country. Researcher Seth Stephens-Davidowitz based his research on a study of how often residents in the nation’s media markets use Google to search for the “N-word.” The rates were highest in parts of the Deep South—no surprise there —and through the Appalachians into New England.</p> <p>How credible is such research? Perhaps more than you might think. According to the <em>Washington Post</em>, Stephens-Davidowitz’s findings align fairly well with results from a study of racist Tweets by researchers at Humboldt State (Calif.) University.</p> <p>Stephens-Davidowitz put the country’s media markets into four groups, where he found that there was 1) much more racism than average, 2) more racism than average, 3) less racism than average and 4) much less racism than average. Palm Beach, Broward and Dade counties came in as less average.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong><em>Randy Schultz</em></strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald and </em><em>Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>   </p>Randy SchultzTue, 05 May 2015 08:29:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: May 5 to 11<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="385" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/w_carolprusa_delphys1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Carol Prusa Art Salon</strong></p> <p>Where: Armory Art Center, 1700 Parker Ave., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 6:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $10</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-1776, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>In her day job, Carol Prusa teaches painting at Florida Atlantic University. On her own time, as a working artist, Prusa contemplates the universe. Situating her work on the tenuous border between scientific inquiry and artistic expression, Prusa is most known for her acrylic hemispheres, some reaching five feet in diameter, created with silverpoint drawing and graphite, and illuminated by patterns of fiber optic lights. Inspired as much by Galileo and Hawking as any visual artist, Prusa explores what it means to create something from nothing, and her mesmerizing, greyscale spheres explore the infinite void of the astronomical unknown. She will discuss “the evolution of my visual language from inner space to expression in outer space” in this special artist’s salon titled “Fearful Symmetry: Sensing Space Inside and Out.”</p> <p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/neutral_milk_hotel2.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Neutral Milk Hotel</strong></p> <p>Where: Olympia Theatre, 174 E. Flagler St., Miami</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $46</p> <p>Contact: 305/374-2444, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>I’m still pinching myself about this one. Like most indie-rock fans, I thought I would never have the opportunity to see Athens, Ga. psych-folk legends Neutral Milk Hotel perform live. Shortly after the group’s dark and astonishing sophomore album, 1998’s “In the Aeroplane Over the Sea,” became a cult sensation, founder Jeff Mangum had something of a nervous breakdown and disbanded Neutral Milk Hotel, satisfying fans only through esoteric field recordings and session work with his musician friends. A few reunion dates began to appear at hipper cities than ours a few years ago, and now, nearly 20 years after the release of its debut album, Neutral Milk Hotel is playing its first and last South Florida show. The significance of this cannot be overstated. Whether or not you’re an aficionado of Mangum’s fuzzed-out, unconventional musicianship, surreal lyrics and oft-imitated warble, you owe it to yourself to be a part of this once-in-a-lifetime event; a few scant tickets still remain at the time of this writing.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/ryan-adams.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Ryan Adams and Jenny Lewis</strong></p> <p>Where: Fillmore, 1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $50-$70</p> <p>Contact: 305/673-7300, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>One of the most respected musicians of the 2000s, Ryan Adams is also one of the new century’s prickliest and most prolific performers, an alt-country rock star whose bad side you’d best avoid. But when he’s on, which is almost all the time, there are few singer-songwriters more captivating—not to mention capable of releasing everything from stripped-down acoustic ballads to heavy-metal concept albums. The former Whiskeytown frontman has released 14 LPs since 2000, including his self-titled latest from 2014, not to mention the songs he’s recorded under his black metal moniker (Werewolph), his hard-rock handle (Sleazy Handshake) and his punk-rock side project (Pornography). The versatile tunesmith will bring along a solid headliner in her right, Jenny Lewis, the siren behind the indie rockers Rilo Kiley, who is supporting her second solo album “The Voyager.”</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="486" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/beerfest2015_new-logo_web.png" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Delray Beach Craft Beer Fest</strong></p> <p>Where: Delray Beach Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave.</p> <p>When: 6:30 to 10:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $35-$60</p> <p>Contact: 561/243-7922 ext. 1, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Budwesier, Coors and Miller may still dominate the American beer market, but it’s far from the oligopoly it used to be. The craft beer explosion has meant richer, fruitier, even chocolatier tastes for more-adventurous imbibers, to the point that drinkers now have a glut of options: At the end of 2013, there were 2,768 craft breweries in the U.S. When visiting a place like Vintage Tap or Boca’s Yardhouse, the options can seem overwhelming—which is where events like the Delray Beach Craft Beer Fest come in. Celebrating its fourth year as a fundraiser for the Center for the Arts, the event will feature an unlimited sampling of more than 100 craft brews, international beers and ciders from national and local breweries, with South Florida stalwarts Funky Buddha, Due South and Saltwater likely to participate. There also will be a wine tasting of nine distinct varietals, food vendors and music from a DJ and a live reggae/funk band. We recommend purchasing VIP tickets, which grant attendees a commemorative mug and an hour of advance access to the libations.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="209" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/edp_hhh_lionhero_mt46515.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: “Heroes of Hip Hop: The Lion Hero”</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $20-$40</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>First, it was a $987 million-grossing film; then it became the fifth-longest-running musical of all-time. Now, “The Lion King” has morphed into this new, and exclusively local, incarnation: a youth hip-hop dance extravaganza. The Weston-based Heroes of Hip Hop is a dance studio that teaches hip-hop dance to beginners, intermediates and advanced dancers, the best of whom receive the opportunity to showcase their talents at special events like this one, at the Broward Center’s Amaturo Theater. Elaborate face paint and costumes will bring the Disney franchise to new, streetwise life in this family-friendly dance version, as the energetic youngsters will play Simba, Zazu, Rafiki, Pumbaa and Timon. Whether Elton John’s sentimental music will be reborn with Timbaland beats remains to be heard.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="127" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/dames-banner.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Dames at Sea”</strong></p> <p>Where: The Wick Theatre, 7901 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $58–$62</p> <p>Contact: 561/995-2333, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>“Dames at Sea” has been called “Broadway’s biggest little musical,” because its origins were indeed small. When the show premiered off-off-Broadway in 1966—starring a then-unknown Bernadette Peters—its venue was Caffe Cino, a coffeehouse in Greenwich Village. With two pianos and a percussionist, a tiny stage and a cast of just six, the creators of “Dames at Sea” managed to parody and simulate a lavish blockbuster, taking as their inspiration the splashy, leggy, Depression-era entertainments of Busby Berkeley. As such, you’ll recognize the show’s deliberately shopworn archetypes, starting with the Broadway ingénue with “nothing but tap shoes in her suitcase and a prayer in her heart.” There’s also the temperamental diva, the sassy chorus girl, the Navy ship setting a la “Anything Goes,” the misjudged flirtations, and the wedding finale. “Dames at Sea” is an amusing homage best appreciated by those who have seen too many musicals, but in the decades since its inception, it’s managed to have its satire and transcend it too, becoming a genuinely expensive theatrical powerhouse. It runs through May 31.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="226" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/1412369545-bill_philipps_tickets.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Bill Philipps</strong></p> <p>Where: The Marriott, 4000 RCA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $40-$75</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>When Bill Philipps visited South Florida a year ago, he performed at Palm Beach Improv; and while can be a funny guy onstage, he’s not a comedian: He’s a psychic medium, translating messages from the dead at special events like this one. Ranked as a top medium on the website Best Psychic Directory, Philipps’ abilities began as a child and manifested most significantly following his mother’s death, which struck her when Philipps was 14. He says she visited him that very night, when his room became illuminated with varied colors of light. Years later, he honed his gifts with mediumship classes, and these days his schedule is booked for more than a year in advance, at $250 for 30 minutes. Taking your chances at this lower-priced gallery reading sounds like the potential for a great spiritual bargain.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="180" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/690x310-consil-3.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “The Consul”</strong></p> <p>Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25-$229</p> <p>Contact: 305/949-6722, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>If you’ve never been to an opera—or if you don’t think you like opera—then you owe it to yourself to see “The Consul,” the season-closing production from Florida Grand Opera. The 1950 debut from composer Gian Carlo Menotti, “The Consul” is devastating in an accessible, relatable way that conjures George Orwell: It’s sung in English and is set in an unidentified totalitarian country in Europe, where a secret police force is searching for John Sorrel, political dissident. Much of the drama involves efforts by John’s family to obtain visas to leave the country. Tenor and supporting actor Jason Ferrante says, “It’s very unspecific, and I think that was very appealing to Menotti. It’s funny that a piece that was relevant in 1950 is relevant in 2015, especially here in Miami, where issues of coming and going from one’s country are a hot topic right now.” Ferrante plays a magician who hypnotizes the consul’s secretary in a bravura 20-minute scene, and the production also stars Kara Shay Thomson, who recently played Tosca for FGO; and Keith Phares, who starred in “Mourning Becomes Electra” last year. “The Consul” runs through May 16.</p>John ThomasonTue, 05 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsWeb Xtra: Small-Plate Splendor<h3>Check out the recipes from our fabulous food pictorial in the May/June issue.</h3> <p><strong>Steak Tartare Napoleon</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="402" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/steaktartare.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Courtesy of La Nouvelle Maison</em></p> <p>Executive chef Gregory Howell</p> <p><span>Ingredients</span></p> <p>4 ounces beef tenderloin</p> <p>1/4 teaspoon chervil</p> <p>1/4 teaspoon shallots</p> <p>1/4 teaspoon ketchup</p> <p>2 capers each</p> <p>1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard</p> <p>1/4 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil</p> <p>4 Spanish white anchovies</p> <p>1 hard-boiled chicken egg; separate white</p> <p>1 quail egg</p> <p>1/2 ounce American hackleback caviar</p> <p>4 cornichons each</p> <p>Sea salt to taste</p> <p>Black pepper</p> <p>Batard, sliced and toasted </p> <p>Chervil, chopped (garnish)</p> <p>Pimento d’espelette (garnish)</p> <p><span>Preparation</span></p> <p>Chop beef tenderloin into small dice and mix with salt, pepper, capers, shallots, extra virgin olive oil, ketchup, Dijon mustard. Cook quail egg sunny-side up, season and put aside. Toast and season sliced baguette (batard). Chop hard-boiled egg, mix with 1 chopped cornichon, salt and pepper. Arrange half steak tartare in a form and press gently and spoon caviar on top, finish with last of steak tartare. Lift off form to hold shape.</p> <p>Place sunny-side quail egg on top of tartare. Arrange chopped egg and cornichon mixture on plate. Place sliced grilled batard on plate. Sprinkle pimento and garnish with chervil and anchovy.  </p> <p><strong>19th Street Short Rib Tacos</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="429" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/tacos.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Courtesy of Farmer’s Table</em></p> <p>Executive chef Wilson Wieggel</p> <p>Serves 4</p> <p><span>Ingredients</span></p> <p>10 ounces barbecue-braised short rib, cooked and shredded</p> <p>8 each sprouted corn tortillas (organic and GMO free, available at Whole Foods)</p> <p>4 ounces romaine lettuce, finely chiffonade</p> <p>4 ounces green cabbage, quick tossed with fresh squeezed lime, chopped cilantro</p> <p>1 each ripe avocado, sliced</p> <p>For Pico de gallo</p> <p>2 ounces small heirloom tomato, diced</p> <p>1 ounce red onion, diced</p> <p>1 teaspoon jalapeño, diced</p> <p>1 teaspoon fresh-squeezed lime juice</p> <p>1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil</p> <p><span>Preparation</span></p> <p>Build tacos with warm tortilla, romaine on the bottom first to catch the juice from the meat. Add 1 ounce beef. Top with cabbage, pico de gallo and thin slice of avocado.</p> <p><strong>Fresh Crab Salad</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="384" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/crabsalad.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Courtesy of Waterstone Resort &amp; Marina</em></p> <p>Chef Matthew Mixon</p> <p><span>Ingredients</span></p> <p>1 can jumbo lump crab meat</p> <p>2 red bell peppers, small diced</p> <p>1 bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped</p> <p>1 medium red onion, small diced</p> <p>4 fresh hearts of palm stocks, blanched and fully cooked</p> <p>1 fresh Hass avocado</p> <p>2 lemons, juice only</p> <p>2 fresh Florida oranges (1 for juice, 1 for garnish)</p> <p>1 fresh Florida grapefruit (1/2 for juice, 1/2 for garnish)</p> <p>2 fresh shallots, finely chopped</p> <p>4 tablespoons of good olive oil</p> <p>Salt and pepper to taste</p> <p>2 cups mixed greens (optional)</p> <p>2 cups fresh arugula (optional)</p> <p><span>Preparation</span></p> <p>Open crab meat, drain liquid and pour into large bowl. Place bell peppers, 1 chopped shallot, cilantro, red onion and hearts of palm into bowl. Use 1/2 juice from all fresh citrus and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Mix ingredients. Taste and season with salt and pepper.</p> <p>For dressing: Place rest of citrus juice and shallots in small mixing bowl. Whisk and slowly add rest of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.</p> <p>For plating: Use cookie mold and place in bottom of mold 1/2 of avocado. Smash with spoon until flat, then place crab salad mixture on top; smash until flat. Add citrus segments for garnish and drizzle dressing around plate.</p>magazineMon, 04 May 2015 10:00:00 +0000 The MagazineWeb ExtrasWeb Xtra: French Onion Soup<h3>Here’s the Deconstructing the Dish recipe from La Ferme’s Chad Ford.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/laferme.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>French Onion Soup</strong></p> <p>Chad Ford, La Ferme</p> <ul> <li>5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided</li> <li>3 pounds Vidalia onions (about 4 medium), halved lengthwise, peeled, and thinly sliced</li> <li>1 tablespoon vegetable oil</li> <li>1 teaspoon kosher salt</li> <li>1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper</li> <li>1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar</li> <li>1 1/2 cups dry white wine</li> <li>6 cups homemade <span>beef broth</span> </li> <li>10 sprigs thyme</li> <li>2 bay leaves</li> <li>1 baguette</li> <li>1 garlic clove, cut in half lengthwise</li> <li>2 teaspoons sherry, preferably Fino or Manzanilla</li> <li>4 ounces Gruyère cheese, grated (about 1 cup)</li> </ul> <p>In a large Dutch oven or other large pot, melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the oil and onions; cook onions are until softened, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Add the salt, pepper, and sugar; continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are deep golden brown and caramelized, reducing heat slightly if onions seem to be browning too quickly, 35 to 45 minutes more.</p> <p>Add wine and raise heat to high. Cook until almost all liquid has evaporated, 8 to 10 minutes.</p> <p>Tie thyme and bay leaves into a bundle with twine. Add broth and herb bundle to pot with onions. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, uncovered, until broth is thickened and flavorful, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Taste and adjust seasoning.</p> <p>Heat the broiler. Cut two 1/2-inch baguette slices for every serving of soup. Place baguette slices on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in oven until crisp and dry but not browned, about 1 minute per side. Rub one side of each toast with the garlic clove and set aside.</p> <p>Place ramekins or oven safe bowls on a rimmed baking sheet, add 1/2 teaspoon of sherry to the bottom of each, and ladle soup on top. Top each serving of soup with two garlic-rubbed toasts. Divide cheese among the servings, covering the bread and some of the soup. Carefully transfer baking sheet to oven and broil until cheese is melted and bubbling, 4 to 8 minutes. (Alternatively, if using regular soup bowls: Top each garlic-rubbed toast with some cheese and return to broiler to melt, about 2 minutes more. Divide sherry and soup among bowls, sprinkle with remaining cheese, and top each serving with two cheese toasts.)</p>magazineMon, 04 May 2015 08:52:00 +0000 The MagazineWeb ExtrasMother&#39;s Day Dining, Part I<p><img alt="" height="291" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/mothers-day2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Christmas comes on Sunday, May 10, at least for restaurants. That, of course, would be Mother’s Day, when the National Restaurant Association says that some 80 million Americans will take Mom out for a meal on her special day, adding up to a pretty big chunk of the estimated $21 billion to be spent on Mother’s Day meals and gifts. So all this week we’ll be featuring local restaurants and their Mother’s Day offerings.</p> <p><strong>Off the Hook</strong> (<em>1956 N.E. Fifth Ave., 561/609-2915</em>). This new Boca Raton seafood house will be serving up a three course meal for $50 per person. Choices include starters like shrimp cocktail and clams oreganata, entrees like lobster ravioli and shrimp and crab-stuffed lemon sole, and either bread pudding or New York-style cheesecake for dessert.</p> <p>Boca’s elegant <strong>Waterstone Resort</strong> (<em>999 E. Camino Real, 561/226-3022</em>) will dish up a Mom’s Day brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for $69 for adults, $30 for children. There will be made-to-order omelets, cedar plank salmon, lamb chops and ham, plus all manner of breads and pastries, salads, sides and desserts. Live Latin jazz too.</p> <p>In downtown Delray, Gary Rack’s ode to Southern cuisine, <strong>Fat Rooster</strong> (<em>204 E. Atlantic Ave., 561/266-3642</em>) will be offering both brunch (from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and dinner (3 p.m. until the place shuts down). A la carte dishes include sweet potato pancakes and fried chicken ‘n’ waffles, also shrimp ‘n’ grits and short rib meatloaf.</p> <p>The black tie meatery in Palm Beach, <strong>Meat Market</strong> (<em>191 Bradley Place, 561/354-9800</em>), lets you fete Mom in style with a $45 prix fixe menu (and half-priced bottles of wine). Among the dishes in the three-course dinner will be avocado tuna tartare and tomato bisque, USDA Prime New York steak or half a roasted chicken, and lavender-white chocolate mousse.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 04 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsSunFest Reviews: Hozier, Pixies<p><em>[NOTE: The Week Ahead will run on Tuesday this week.]</em></p> <p><img alt="" height="265" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/hozier-take-me-to-church-niall-muckian-650-430.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>When I arrived at SunFest on Saturday night and saw the massive sea of people watching Stone Temple Pilots (v. 2.0) perform their fatuous frat-rock singles to audiences that still remember ZETA, I had some hope that, maybe, if I showed up for Hozier 10 minutes before start time, I could still find a decent place to stand.</p> <p>How naïve. It may have been the Irish phenom’s first time headlining a festival—a fact he mentioned with gratitude and humility a couple of times during his set—but he carried an audience of thousands, packed as the far as the eye could see, through nearly every track on his self-titled debut and then some. From my vantage point, he was the size of certain Florida mosquitoes, but the distance didn’t dilute the power of his music, whose uniqueness and intensity increased in a live setting.</p> <p>Inevitably, half of those people showed up just to hear “Take Me To Church,” and they filed out like lemmings once he played it, but it was the deeper cuts that were most affecting, aided by a cellist and a pair of backing vocalists. He opened with the lovely and direct “Like Real People Do,” whose opening notes were met with a chorus of adolescent squeals not heard since the Beatles in ’64.</p> <p>“Angel of Small Death and the Codeine Scene” was driving and album-perfect, and a hypnotic version of “It Will Come Back” was aided by Hozier’s description of the song as “about doing the right thing, and cutting off all the ropes and letting go.” “To Be Alone” was Hozier’s zenith; this rousing blues rocker was thunderous and gut-punching, slaying everybody who was paying attention.</p> <p>Which certainly wasn’t everyone in my direct radius. For what it’s worth, of the three SunFest acts I attended this year, the Hozier crowd was the rudest, chattiest, most obnoxious and most self-absorbed, and they so ruined the intimate solo rendition of “Cherry Wine” that I abandoned by space in the boondocks for a spot in the hinterlands, a ZIP code away from the teeming masses.</p> <p><strong>SET LIST</strong></p> <p>Like Real People Do</p> <p>Angel of Small Death and the Codeine Scene</p> <p>From Eden</p> <p>Jackie and Wilson</p> <p>To Be Alone</p> <p>It Will Come Back</p> <p>Cherry Wine (solo acoustic)</p> <p>1 Thing (Amerie cover)</p> <p>Someone New</p> <p>Arsonist’s Lullaby</p> <p>Foreigner’s God</p> <p>Sedated</p> <p>Take Me to Church</p> <p>Work Song</p> <p> <img alt="" height="266" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/pixies.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The next day, I was back for the Pixies, inexplicably slated for a boiling 2:15 p.m. time slot when they obviously should have headlined the whole damn festival. It was my first time seeing the Pixies with bassist Paz Lenchantin replacing the irreplaceable Kim Deal, and she was most animated Pixie onstage; better yet, if you closed your eyes, you could almost trick yourself into thinking you were still hearing Kim.</p> <p>As is their wont, nobody in the Pixies spoke a word to the audience, playing for an hour and 15 minutes without so much as a 30-second break between songs. They performed what could almost be considered a dub mix of “Gouge Away,” extending the song in dancier directions. Played third in set list, it was followed by a string of vintage hits in whiplash succession, a true embarrassment of riches: “Head On,” “Wave of Mutilation,” “Where is My Mind,” “The Holiday Song” and “Nimrod’s Son,” the latter performed with a slowed-down second verse that lulled us into submission before taking us home with a furious finish. “Vamos” also differed from the album track, in that it provided a captivating solo for guitarist Joey Santiago, who set down his instrument and “played” it using only feedback pedals, for a spastic noise assault.</p> <p>The more the set list progressed, the more inaccessible it became for the casual fan, with harsh contributions like the ear-bleeding masterpiece “Rock Music,” deep cuts like the surprising “Trompe Le Monde” inclusion “Subbacultcha,” and one song even I didn’t recognize. Three tracks in a row from “Indie Cindy,” the band’s polarizing and overproduced comeback album, sounded like classic Pixies when played alongside their late ‘80s brethren, especially the anthemic head-banger “What Goes Boom” and the thrilling “Blue-Eyed Hexe,” on which Frank Black seemed on the verge of gloriously blowing out his vocal chords.</p> <p>But when it was all said and done, I think most us were just a tad disappointed—not at the Pixies so much as their unattractive timeslot, which capped their set list at 23 songs instead of the usual 30-33. When you think of the obvious fan favorites that somehow didn’t make the cut—“Here Comes Your Man,” “Gigantic,” “Monkey Gone to Heaven,” “Caribou,” “Velouria,” “Planet of Sound”—it’s easy to feel short-changed. There’s always next time, I hope.</p> <p><strong>SET LIST</strong></p> <p>U-Mass</p> <p>Bagboy</p> <p>Gouge Away</p> <p>Head On</p> <p>Wave of Mutilation</p> <p>Where is My Mind?</p> <p>Holiday</p> <p>Nimrod’s Son</p> <p>Break My Body</p> <p>Vamos</p> <p>Greens and Blues</p> <p>Subbacultcha</p> <p>???</p> <p>Rock Music</p> <p>What Goes Boom</p> <p>Blue-Eyed Hexe</p> <p>Magdalena 318</p> <p>Dead</p> <p>River Euphrates</p> <p>Isla de Encanta</p> <p>I’ve Been Tired</p> <p>Debaser</p> <p>Hey</p>John ThomasonSun, 03 May 2015 23:19:00 +0000 & EventsMusicWhere to Party on Cinco de Mayo<p><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/April/cinco-de-mayo.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Fun, games and hot-and-cold running margaritas. . . that’s what’s on local restaurants’ menus for <strong>Cinco de Mayo</strong>. (Which, BTW, is next Tuesday.) Here’s a quick rundown on some of the festivities.</p> <p><strong>Rocco’s Tacos</strong> in Boca (<em>5250 Town Center Circle, 561/416-2131</em>), West Palm (224 Clematis St., 561/650-1001) and Palm Beach Gardens (5090 PGA Blvd., 561/623-0127) will be pulling out all the stops with their annual CdeM bash. At each location it begins at noon on Tuesday and continues until the wee hours with food and drink specials, live mariachi music, free tequila pours, prizes and DJs.</p> <p>At <strong>El Camino</strong> (<em>15 N.E. Second Ave., 561/865-5350</em>) in downtown Delray the party gets started at 11 a.m. and goes on until 2 in the morning. On-hand will be a DJ and mariachi band, plus cool special cocktails and a raffle giving away a VIP trip to the Key West Lobsterfest in August.</p> <p>Boca’s <strong>Tijuana Flats</strong> (<em>22191 Powerline Road, 561/465-2723</em>) kicks things off today with food and drink specials that continue through Tuesday. Look for $5.55 entrees with chips, culminating Tuesday with two tacos, chips and a drink for $5.49. One-dollar drafts, $2 bottle beers, $3 sangria and $4 wine too.</p> <p>The fiesta begins at 11 a.m. at <strong>Rosalita’s</strong> (<em>5949 S. Congress Ave., 561/964-5747</em>) in Atlantis and doesn’t stop until 11 o’clock at night. Drink specials and fun for the kiddies will be on tap, with face-painting and a magician along with margaritas big enough to take a bath in.</p> <p><strong>Uncle Julio’s</strong> (<em>449 Plaza Real, 561/300-3530</em>) in Boca is throwing a party too. This one starts at 4 p.m. and goes on until late, featuring dancing, a DJ and various drink specials. Satisfy your margarita fix.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 01 May 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsUpcoming EventsTake 5: Jason Ferrante<p class="p1">If you’ve never been to an opera—or if you don’t think you like opera—then you owe it to yourself to see “The Consul,” the season-closing production from Florida Grand Opera (<em>May 9–16 at Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</em>; <a href="" target="_blank"></a>).</p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="328" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/take5ferrante3.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">The 1950 debut from composer Gian Carlo Menotti, “The Consul” is devastating in an accessible, relatable way that conjures George Orwell: It’s sung in English and is set in an unidentified totalitarian country in Europe, where a secret police force is searching for John Sorrel, political dissident. Much of the drama involves efforts by John’s family to obtain visas to leave the country.</p> <p class="p1">“It’s timeless in its themes,” says tenor and supporting actor <strong>Jason Ferrante</strong>. “It’s very unspecific, and I think that was very appealing to Menotti. It’s funny that a piece that was relevant in 1950 is relevant in 2015, especially in Miami, where issues of coming and going from one’s country are a hot topic right now.” Ferrante, a 39-year-old Pembroke Pines resident whose Florida Grand Opera credits include “Rigoletto” and “Tosca,” has been gifted a plum role in “Consul,” as a magician who performs tricks and hypnotizes the consul’s secretary in a bravura 20-minute scene. He had to learn real magic for the part, including a disappearing/reappearing 8-ball trick, and making water and flowers materialize out of nowhere.</p> <p class="p1">It’s only the latest challenge from this tireless and in-demand Juilliard graduate, who runs a vocal studio by day and performs for opera companies across the country during season. During a rare period of downtime, the affable performer sat down with Boca Raton to discuss life as a professional opera singer.</p> <p class="p1"><em>Q1:  What kind of impact does a run of performances have on your voice?</em></p> <p class="p2">In the dream world, you’re feeling healthy, and you’re feeling rested. For me, on a good day after a couple of performances, my body feels more fatigued than my voice. It’s tired from acting and breathing and supporting the instrument. But the throat itself usually feels OK.</p> <div class="post-content"> <div class="editable-original"><center> <p class="p1"><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center></div> </div>John ThomasonFri, 01 May 2015 01:45:00 +0000 & EventsIn The MagazineMusicBreak on Through<p class="p1">On the third day of a recent trip to Tarpon Springs, Fla., my body was asleep but my mind was very much awake. It was about 10 in the morning on a Saturday at Temple Mound, a remote facility inauspiciously located among empty plots of land and auto-body shops. But at this spiritualist speakeasy, I was about to have my consciousness elevated, as part of a weekend retreat titled “Excursion Workshop Level I.”</p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/hansenb141024_0082.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">I was sitting in the atmospheric home of Steve DerDerian, founder of Temple Mound, a sort of New Age B&amp;B amid his 17 acres of land. In his sprawling living room—bisected by a stone fireplace/bookshelf lined with texts about the afterlife, channeling, tarot, remote viewing and other metaphysical phenomena—I and six other participants reclined on comfortable chairs, covered by blankets and eyeshades, headphones blocking out everything except the tones piping through our mini mp3 players.</p> <p class="p1">We were listening to a selection from the vast library of Hemi-Sync recordings. The name, branded by metaphysical pioneer Robert Monroe, stands for Hemisphere Synchronization. Monroe discovered that when specialized audio tones called binaural beats are combined in a certain way, the brain will by synced into a “theta state” of high creativity and an awareness that extends beyond the physical world—ultimately causing us to use some 90 percent of our brains. When people claim to have out-of-body experiences or communication with their “spirit guides,” Hemi-Sync is a popular tool to get there.</p> <p class="p1">In my first Hemi-Sync experience, it was difficult to eschew logic, skepticism and self-consciousness. But eventually I went under, in a matter not unlike hypnosis. Nausea rippled through my body at one point—the only time, thankfully, in the entire retreat—which DerDerian suggested was caused by my brain not recognizing its paradigm shift. Soon enough, I was experiencing visions and sounds I wasn’t consciously creating.</p> <p class="p1">One, and only one, lyric from an obscure song by The Smiths became a recurring soundtrack to the fragmented visuals I encountered. I had a vision of my wife collecting shells on a beach, a scene that manifested in our physical reality later that evening—that phenomenon is called precognition. And most significantly, I heard myself asking a question I wasn’t physically asking or even thinking about: “Where is my wife’s wedding ring?” Her engagement ring had disappeared a couple of weeks prior, and she’d been combing our home for it ever since. An answer immediately arrived from some higher source: “The closet!”</p> <p class="p1">I vowed that, when I arrived back home, I would check our bedroom closet for the ring before I did anything else.</p> <div class="post-content"> <div class="editable-original"><center> <p class="p1"><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center></div> </div>John ThomasonFri, 01 May 2015 01:42:00 +0000 & EventsIn The MagazineThe Way We Were<h3>Travel back in time for a glimpse at the Boca of yesteryear -- through the eyes of residents who've seen their city grow by leaps and bounds.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="379" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/thewaywewere.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">It’s hard to imagine Boca Raton back then, when Glades Road divided Butts bean farm and Military Trail was the far western frontier of what was then a sleepy resort town. But long before IBM and Mizner Park and Town Center mall and Broken Sound, Boca was little more than a blip on the South Florida radar. In 1958, the best that the chamber could come up with as a marketing slogan was, “Boca Raton: The Different Florida Community.”</p> <p class="p1">One of the only things, in those days, that made us different was the then-Boca Raton Hotel &amp; Club (now the Resort &amp; Club), a crown jewel amid otherwise undeveloped Florida scrubland, miles of farms and a dormant city airport that, after its heyday as an Army Air Force training base during World War II, shut down in 1957.</p> <p class="p1">Still, enough people saw potential in Boca, including Northerners interested in seasonal escapes to the Sunshine State, to put the city on a slow road to expansion. The arrival of IBM in 1967—and, more specifically, the launch of the PC here in 1981—would kick that into overdrive.</p> <p class="p1">But what about the decades leading up to Boca’s turn in the tech spotlight—what about the 1950s, the ’60s and the ’70s? What was life like in Boca? Where did people shop? What did they do for fun?</p> <p class="p1">We asked longtime residents of the community to share their recollections of Boca—before it became Boca.</p> <p class="p1"><strong>KEN RONAN</strong></p> <p class="p1"><em>Boca wasn’t exactly the Wild West during the 1960s of Ken’s youth. But nearly every kid in town did own a gun—a BB gun, that is. “What parent in his right mind would get their kid a BB gun,” he asks with a hint of faux outrage. Such pellet guns, of course, were as much a part of life for Boca kids in that era as bicycling to school or congregating at the popular Teen Town. Now a partner at a Boca-based law firm that bears his name (Lavalle Brown &amp; Ronan), Ken shares a few memories from his childhood.</em></p> <p class="p1">‘‘I’m originally from Philly. My grandfather had a winter home in Hollywood, and he was doing some developing here in Boca. My dad moved us here in 1964 to do that. I was 7. Our car was jammed with four kids and a cocker spaniel, and [when we arrived in Boca] I thought it was magical. Bridges that went up in the air. Boats. Beautiful weather.</p> <p class="p1">“My fondest memory from that early time was the old [Royal Palm] polo grounds, which is where Chipotle and Houston’s are now. It was owned by the Oxley family. It was well attended on Sundays because I don’t think there was much else to do in town. I worked there shoveling the stalls and walking the polo ponies.</p> <p class="p1">“There used to be an old cable car that would go across Hillsboro Canal. We used to [ride our bikes] to 12th Avenue, then through this scrub brush to these dirt paths, probably where Military Trail is now. That’s how we got to the cable car; we’d ride it across and jump into the canal.</p> <p class="p1">“You know what’s really different now? The sea life. I used to be able to put on a mask, fins and snorkel and go out to the first reef and get all the lobster I wanted. You could spear all kinds of fish. There was a time of year when conch would march down the coast, and you’d just be littered with it. I don’t see conch out there anymore. I think it’s been fished out, for the most part.</p> <p class="p1">“I miss the small-town atmosphere [of Boca]. There’s a freedom in not having to lock doors that doesn’t exist anymore.”</p> <div class="post-content"> <div class="editable-original"><center> <p class="p1"><em>For more Boca memories, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center></div> </div>magazineFri, 01 May 2015 01:34:00 +0000 The MagazineNewsMan of His Word<p>Michael Grunwald can hold his own with policy wonks. He’s a seasoned journalist with stints at the Boston Globe , Washington Post  and Time  magazine. And he’s been honored for his national and investigative reporting.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/michaelgrunwald.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">However, most Floridians may know him best for his book, The Swamp: The Everglades, Florida and the Politics of Paradise , which started from a newspaper series about the Army Corps of Engineers and Everglades restoration and morphed into what is arguably one of the most compelling and detailed histories of Florida—filtered through the tale of its most precious resource, The Florida Everglades.</p> <p class="p1">It was a project that seemed like a long shot for a kid from Long Island whose idea of the Great Outdoors was the occasional tennis match. But it earned the Harvard grad serious kudos for his meticulous reporting—and the new distinction of historian—all before he’d turned 40.</p> <p class="p1">His next book in 2012, The New New Deal: The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era , became a New York Times  best-seller. These days, Grunwald, now 44, is focused on his new job with Politico  magazine, his life in South Beach with wife Cristina and their two young children—and working on his slice backhand.</p> <p class="p1">We asked one of the featured authors at this spring’s Festival of the Arts Boca how he got to Miami—and what he was thinking about these days.</p> <p class="p1"><em>What attracted you to journalism?</em></p> <p class="p2">I always liked to write. I was always interested in the world, I guess. In college I wrote for the college paper. I wrote for the Boston Globe sports section over the summer when they had this amazing sports section. I just really liked it. I went to work for the Boston Globe after college, but I was not on sports anymore.</p> <p class="p1"><em>A recent quote of yours was that your “current media diet”—mostly links for your Twitter feed—is “more interesting, more substantive and more up to the minute than ever.”</em> <em>How do you square that observation with the state of traditional news media and how do you see its future unfolding?</em></p> <p class="p2">What’s depressing is that it’s hard for the people above my pay grade to figure out how to make all this great journalism profitable. But I am now at a place that is figuring that out; Politico is taking digital substantive stuff online and figuring how to make money. In fact, they have realized that they need to get better—that they won’t make more money by chasing clicks about Kim Kardashian, that they’ll make more money by chasing</p> <div class="post-content"> <div class="editable-original"><center> <p class="p1"><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center></div> </div>Marie SpeedFri, 01 May 2015 01:28:00 +0000 The MagazineNewsFace TIme: Paul Jamieson<p>Among the safer bets on any given year at SunFest is that executive director <strong>Paul Jamieson</strong> will be nowhere near Flagler Drive when the gates to the annual outdoor music festival in downtown West Palm Beach first open. It’s not the potential bustle that keeps him out of sight.</p> <p><img alt="" height="335" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/paul-jamieson.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">In fact, it’s just the opposite.</p> <p class="p1">“Everybody who works here has recurring dreams,” Jamieson says. “Mine is that we open SunFest—and no one has come. I have this dream every year. So on the first day, after the gates open at 5, I won’t walk the grounds until after 7—because that’s my dream. If I go early and see no one there, I’ll be like …”</p> <p class="p1">Jamieson feigns a bout of hyperventilation.</p> <p class="p1">Given the weighty expectations on SunFest to produce year after year, it’s not hard to see why Jamieson’s subconscious kicks into overdrive come late April. As this year’s five-day event unfolds (April 29 to May 3) with one of its most star-studded lineups in the festival’s three-decade history, consider this: Unlike organizations that run year-round, SunFest has a combined 36-hour window to do its business.</p> <p class="p1">Come rain or shine.</p> <p class="p1">“My dad, before he died, came out to the festival for the first time,” says Jamieson, a native of Cook County, Ill. “He took a look around and said, ‘If it rains, you’re really screwed.’ Leave it to Dad to be here two minutes and put it all in perspective.</p> <p class="p1">“Yes, we live in a much riskier world compared to entities that are open all year. The pressure to perform is enormous.”</p> <p class="p1">For the past 20 years as executive director, Jamieson, along with a dedicated team of full-time staff and volunteers, has turned risk into reward in more ways than one. Last year’s attendance of 175,000 included people from 43 states and 23 foreign countries who traveled to South Florida just for SunFest. The estimated economic impact from that influx? Approximately $15 million.</p> <p class="p1">Along the way, SunFest has managed to nurture its community roots—among the some 2,000 volunteers are locals who’ve been with the event since its inception (in 1983)—while emerging as a heavyweight music festival with national cachet.</p> <p class="p1">“Our budget for talent alone has increased by $1 million since 2012 [to $2.5 million, part of a $7 million overall budget],” Jamieson says. “We’re not a Coachella or Bonnaroo, but we’re right there. We’re in the major leagues.”</p> <div class="post-content"> <div class="editable-original"><center> <p class="p1"><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center></div> </div>John ThomasonFri, 01 May 2015 01:23:00 +0000 & EventsIn The MagazineMusicUpcoming EventsNeedle Points<p>One way to soften a pesky facial line or wrinkle is with a medicine derived from a lethal toxin known to cause weakness—even paralysis. But that hasn’t stopped botulinum toxin, which is FDA-approved in three medicines for cosmetic purposes, from becoming one of the most popular age-defying treatments.</p> <p><img alt="" height="403" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/screen_shot_2015-04-30_at_10.03.43_pm.png" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">Most know it as Botox; the other neurotoxins on the block are Dysport and Xeomin. All work equally well to reduce wrinkles and lines that make us look angry and older, but Botox grabs the bulk of the headlines. We asked Delray Beach dermatologist <strong>Thomas Balshi</strong> (<em>4665 W. Atlantic Ave., Suite B, 561/272-6000</em>, <a href="" target="_blank"></a>) and Boca Raton plastic surgeon <strong>Daniel Man</strong> (<em>851 Meadows Road, Suite </em><em>222</em>, <em>561/395-5508</em>, <a href="" target="_blank"></a>) for their insights into the Botox revolution.</p> <p class="p1">■ Pros: Botox is simple to administer and offers dramatic results, Balshi says. An in-office treatment involves injecting Botox straight into the wrinkled area—and then going about your day. All this, Man says, with minimal discomfort.</p> <p class="p1">■ Cons: Today’s botulinum toxin options last three to six months, before needing a re-do. Side effects from the preparations approved for cosmetic use are generally mild, “like injection site bruising or a headache afterwards,” Balshi says. While rare, worse things can happen. Improperly administered injections can result in cockeyed eyebrows, sagging eyelids, double vision and more, Man says. To avoid those, go to a doctor with experience, board certification and a good reputation.</p> <center> <p><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> <center></center></center>Lisette HiltonFri, 01 May 2015 01:19:00 +0000 The MagazineThe Difference Maker<p class="p1">When <strong>Kate Kilian</strong> speaks, you listen—if you can keep up, that is.</p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/kate-killian.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">The 30-year-old chemistry teacher at West Palm Beach’s Oxbridge Academy talks at a dizzyingly rapid clip, each word racing against the next like horses at Churchill Downs. She answers questions like somebody who needs to be someplace, because she probably does: Her schedule would seem punishing if it weren’t so fulfilling.</p> <p class="p1">On Tuesdays after school, she assists some of her students in meeting with lonely seniors in nursing homes; on Wednesdays, her students coach a science team for children at the local Boys &amp; Girls Clubs; on Thursdays, she runs a tutoring program for kids at The Lord’s Place, the West Palm Beach homeless shelter, with about 20 of her students.</p> <p class="p1">Then there’s her monthly visits to the Quantum House at St. Mary’s Medical Center, where she provides food and comfort to parents whose children are undergoing long-term medical treatment. Through it all, she also manages to moderate Oxbridge’s Science Club, assist the head coach of the girls’ soccer team and run her own book club.</p> <p class="p1">“I’ve always believed that if you see a problem, you shouldn’t wait for somebody else to fix it,” she says. “It’s your responsibility to take care of it. And I enjoy doing it.”</p> <p class="p1">Kilian’s volunteerism, modeled after her parents’ selfless, global work in the medical field, isn’t limited to Palm Beach County causes. She’s spent her past two summers, and two of the past three winter breaks, in Cambodia, where she teaches English to enthusiastic pupils in the genocide-torn nation. She discovered the country’s need when she backpacked through it three years ago.</p> <center> <p class="p1"><em>To read the full story, pick up the May/June issue of </em>Boca Raton<em> magazine.</em></p> </center>John ThomasonFri, 01 May 2015 01:13:00 +0000 The MagazineNewsStaff Picks: Special Occasion Picks + A Gastropub<p><strong>The Alchemist Gastropub &amp; Bar</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><em>Picked by Nancy Kumpulainen, Art Director </em></p> <p><em><img alt="" height="526" src="/site_media/uploads/May%202015/alchemist.jpg" width="400"></em></p> <div>"A fantastic addition to downtown West Palm Beach, this gastropub offers exceptional food and drinks in a welcoming atmosphere. Exquisite homemade cocktails made by knowledgable bartenders who offer great service! Try the lobster poppers appetizer - YUM!"</div> <div> </div> <div>223 Clematis St., West Palm Beach, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></div> <div><strong><br></strong></div> <div><strong>Anthony's Runway 84</strong></div> <div> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>"Anthony's Runway 84 is my new special occasion pick. Imagine top-notch service the way things used to be, stellar classic Italian, and a retro rat pack atmosphere complete with a flamboyant airliner motif, white tablecloths and a maitre'd with two toned shoes and a great New York accent. Fly me to the moon."</p> <p>330 S.R. 84, Fort Lauderdale, <a target="_blank">954/467-8484</a></p> </div> <center> <p><em><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></em></p> </center>magazineFri, 01 May 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Review: Wilco at SunFest<p>Alt-country turned experimental rock darlings Wilco are known for playing marathon-like endurance tests approaching two and a half hours in length and upwards of 30 songs, with multiple encores. When they were slotted to play just an hour and a half on the opening night of SunFest, it didn’t seem like an realistic expectation of brevity—like asking Shakespeare to write just two acts of a play.</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/April/wilco-2012.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>And, indeed, Wilco ignored the schedule, taking us all the way to two hours and more than 25 songs generously plucked from its eight studio albums and its three-volume Woody Guthrie project, along with a smattering of obscure cuts and, most surprisingly, a gem from Uncle Tupelo, Jeff Tweedy’s legendary pre-Wilco band.</p> <p>Of all the group’s albums, only the sublime “Summerteeth” was shut out of the set, which is too bad—but it’s hard to quibble with the final selections, which flowed masterfully from poppy hits to spacey aural canvases to vintage alt-country and finally to fist-pumping sing-alongs. Wilco has timelessly resisting trending into any musical zeitgeist, and last night’s set reflected this diversity, transitioning from the jubilant, Beatlesesque pop of “Hummingbird” to the deliberate and difficult B-side “Panthers” to a thrilling, anarchic arrangement of “Poor Places,” whose music channeled the lyrics’ anxiety.</p> <p>Other surprises included a molten rock version of “Kamera,” which transformed from a quiet plea to a muscular demand, its music as pounding and insistent as anything released by The Fall. Three songs from Wilco’s first album, “A.M.”, turned up on the set list, catchy but often unplayed classics like “Passenger Side” and “Box Full of Letters” (which was my request, submitted via Wilco’s website the day before).</p> <p>Unsurprisingly, the “Yankee Hotel Foxtrot” selections received a massive response, and no matter how many times I hear “Jesus, Etc,” it gives me chills, even in the humid open air. And “New Madrid,” the aforementioned Uncle Tupelo tune, nearly unleashed my floodgates with its ragged poetry, even though the speakers suddenly decided to become staticky during that performance.</p> <p>Tweedy’s banter was minimal last night, the better to cram as many songs as possible into the abbreviated set. Before announcing the title of the masterful “Hate it Here,” he said, “don’t take it personally—it’s not about you.” Earlier, referencing the Lenny Kravitz performance blaring from across the other SunFest stage, he thanked us for coming to see Wilco instead: “We realize you have many entertainment options on a night like this, so we appreciate you flying with us. You could say you’re ‘going our way.’”</p> <p>As much as eyes were on Tweedy, the show proved to be, foremost, a showcase for his band, which remains one of the best in the business. “Art of Almost,” a song that can only be fully appreciated in a live setting, bristled with brooding New Wave angst, and it climaxed in a blissed-out guitar frenzy from Nels Cline that generated some of the loudest applause of the night. Cline’s imaginative solos and inventive shredding—some of it recalling Thurston Moore, with whom he has shared stages—also elevated “Handshake Drugs,” “I’m the Man Who Loves You,” “Impossible Germany” and others. Not to be outdone, multi-instrumentalist Pat Sansone’s Townshendian windmills helped make “Laminated Cat” and others an invigorating live experience.</p> <p>The set crashed to a close with the raucous punk-rock howl of “I’m a Wheel,” sending many of home beautiful and stoned, and setting a standard of quality—and quantity—that few other SunFest acts are likely to top.</p> <p><strong>SET LIST:</strong></p> <p>Handshake Drugs</p> <p>Kamera</p> <p>Walken</p> <p>I’m the Man Who Loves You</p> <p>Secret of the Sea</p> <p>Heavy Metal Drummer</p> <p>Hummingbird</p> <p>Panthers</p> <p>Poor Places</p> <p>Art of Almost</p> <p>Shouldn’t Be Ashamed</p> <p>Jesus, Etc.</p> <p>Born Alone</p> <p>Laminated Cat</p> <p>Box Full of Letters</p> <p>New Madrid</p> <p>Passenger Side</p> <p>California Stars</p> <p>Red-Eyed and Blue</p> <p>I Got You</p> <p>Impossible Germany</p> <p>Dawned on Me</p> <p>The Late Greats</p> <p>Hate it Here</p> <p>Monday</p> <p>Outta Mind Outta Sight</p> <p>I’m a Wheel</p>John ThomasonThu, 30 Apr 2015 13:41:00 +0000 & EventsMusicIs Boca missing the mark on downtown design?<h3><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/img_0223_rev.jpg" width="490"></h3> <h3>Design missing the Mark?</h3> <p>Boca Raton has been trying to get the look of the city’s downtown right for 23 years. As a meeting set for this morning shows, the city still isn’t satisfied.</p> <p>From 8:30 until 3:30, the city’s consultant, Urban Design Associates of Pittsburgh, will lead a discussion about the Interim Design Guidelines that the city adopted in 2008— as part of Ordinance 5052—to encourage aesthetically pleasing development. The guidelines updated rules the city approved in 1992 as part of Ordinance 4035. That came four years after Boca Raton adopted its Downtown Development Order, which set a limit of 8 million square feet of “office equivalent” space downtown.</p> <p>The 2008 change offered developers a deal: Make your projects look the way Boca wants, and you will get to build higher, and thus make more money. But you’ll have to undergo more review. If you want to build under the old (1992) guidelines, you don’t get the added height but you also don’t have to wait for the added review.</p> <p>Specifically, buildings in downtown projects that use the 2008 guidelines can be 140 feet tall instead of 100 feet. The tallest building can go up another 20 feet to accommodate “tower elements or “mechanical enclosures,” as long as no one lives there.</p> <p>According to Deputy City Manager George Brown, the city passed the 2008 ordinance because people didn’t like the buildings they were seeing from the 1992 ordinance. “We heard that they were boxy, that they weren’t pedestrian-friendly, and that there wasn’t a sense of place.” Brown declined to offer examples of projects that annoyed residents and council members “because I don’t want to offend anybody.”</p> <p>The 2008 change came as the Great Recession hit and development stalled, so for several years no one could see if the change was working. Then came a post-recession flurry of approvals for added height under the guidelines. The Mark at Cityscape, which the council approved in May 2012, is the first to near completion. “They’re basically down to fixing the trees,” Brown said. As the project, with 208 apartments and 18,000 square feett of retail and office space, has taken shape, there has been a collective, “Huh?” from council members and residents I have spoken with.</p> <p>Their complaint is that the Mark looks ordinary, not distinctive—and thus is not worthy of the added height. Given that sentiment, the city council proposed today’s meeting as what Mayor Susan Haynie calls “a kind of after-action report.” Council members won’t participate, though some or all may attend.</p> <p>In their roles as board members of the Community Redevelopment Agency, council members will get a post-meeting report from Urban Design Associates on how, with the Mark, the design guidelines worked—or didn’t work. The consultant’s conclusions will address the question, as Brown put it, “Is there a lesson learned?”</p> <p>Based on what Urban Design Associates concludes, the council could ask for changes to the Interim Design Guidelines. Or the council could decide that the guidelines are working and make them permanent. Or the council could decide that the guidelines don’t help and drop them, going back to the rules adopted in 1992.</p> <p>There will be two public comment periods at today’s meeting, and they should be lively. Important as the consultant’s report will be, however, it’s also important to understand what won’t happen, no matter what Urban Design Associates concludes.</p> <p>Any changes to the guidelines would not affect projects the council has approved. That means Palmetto Promenade, formerly known as Archstone, on East Palmetto Park Road. That means Via Mizner, the residential project at Federal Highway and Camino Real on the southern border of what Boca calls the downtown. Obviously, that means the Mark.</p> <p>That also means the Hyatt Place hotel, which will be built just west of the Mark. When the council approved the hotel last September, though, council members and some residents gushed that the design guidelines had produced just the kind of project Boca Raton wanted. If the consultant believes that with the Mark the guidelines failed, one question will be why they worked for one project and not another.</p> <p>When Boca Raton updated its master plan in the last decade, the city asked Urban Design Associates to hold several public meetings and create a Pattern Book that would help the city implement the downtown design guidelines and realize those planning goals. The language from late 2010 is predictably lofty and optimistic:</p> <p>“The public response called for stronger pedestrian connections, human-scaled and articulated buildings, active street frontages and a dynamic skyline. In short, we want a remarkable downtown.</p> <p>“With these clearly established goals, the Pattern Book for Downtown Boca Raton presents tools that will allow developers, architects and residents to convert a collective vision into our new reality. Drawing on the tradition of American planning and carefully crafted design guidelines, we will redefine the character of Downtown Boca Raton as a timeless and progressive city.”</p> <p>Five years later, Boca Raton soon may determine if that language was prophetic or unrealistic. Either way, here’s one last thing to remember:</p> <p>Less than 20 percent of allowable downtown development space remains. The downtown that Boca Raton has is mostly the downtown that Boca Raton will have until the time comes to rebuild it. </p> <h3>The House goes home</h3> <p>On Tuesday, the Florida House quit on the state.</p> <p>In an unprecedented move, House leaders ended the legislative session three days early, leaving only the Senate in business and killing many bills. No one in Tallahassee could remember, or find any record of one chamber having a hissy fit and bolting.</p> <p>House leaders have refused to expand Medicaid, a move that would extend health insurance to roughly 850,000 working-poor Floridians. The Senate supports extending coverage, using money from the Affordable Care Act. The Senate would overcome Republican hostility to the law by obtaining a waiver from the Obama administration for a plan called the Florida Health Insurance Exchange Program (FHIX). It would use the same Medicaid expansion money and cover the same people, just with a different label and under different rules.</p> <p>Yet the House has refused, despite support for the plan from Florida’s major business groups. I wrote last week that the plan especially would help hospitals like Bethesda in Boynton Beach, which sees many uninsured patients— many of them pregnant women.</p> <p>Gov. Rick Scott, who favored Medicaid expansion two years ago, now opposes it. Like the House, it’s all about ideological opposition to the Affordable Care Act. He and House leaders believe, wrongly, that the Obama administration is withholding a decision on another source of health care money for the working poor—the Low Income Pool—to force Florida to expand Medicaid. This week, the governor sued the federal government over that issue, as if a lawsuit will help anything.</p> <p>In fact, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services want Florida to spend that Low Income Pool money better —and told the governor two years ago that the money would stop if he didn’t craft a better program. But Scott has taken no action.</p> <p>Loss of that Low Income Pool money and the failure to expand Medicaid would be a double blow to Bethesda. But the standoff matters to all area hospitals. Boca Raton Regional stands to lose about $1 million, Delray Medical Center about $2.7 million and West Boca Medical Center about $2.5 million.</p> <p>In its budget, the Senate included $2.2 billion from the Low income Pool and $2.8 billion for FHIX. The House included neither item. Worse, the House offered no plan even for replacing the Low Income Pool money, much less expanding health coverage. Senators are negotiating with Washington over the Low Income Pool money. That’s a better strategy than litigation.</p> <p>By leaving early, the House guaranteed that the Legislature won’t pass a budget. The state’s fiscal year ends June 30. The Legislature can meet in special session before then, but such a session will do no good until there’s some compromise. And right now the Senate is the only responsible actor in Tallahassee.</p> <h3>Sober house bill</h3> <p>Fortunately, the House did pass the “sober house” bill before quitting on the state. Boca Raton, Delray Beach and other cities that are homes to many of these recovery residences see the legislation as a first step toward running bad operators out of the business.</p> <p>The Senate passed the legislation last week, so it will go to the governor for what we assume will be his signature, since the two versions got only two negative votes. Any bills that had passed the Senate but had not received a vote in the House will die. Ironically, one of those bills dealt with state water policy and was the top priority of House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, who sent the chamber home early.</p> <p>Though Crisafulli said Wednesday that the House was ready to begin budget talks—so why didn’t he stay?—such standoffs usually get resolved only when a deadline nears. A special session to pass the budget and deal with health care might not happen until mid-June, two weeks before the end of the fiscal year and a potential shutdown of state government. In the meantime, all government agencies—school districts in particular—that can complete their budgets only after the state budget passes must wait.</p> <h3>Ag Reserve school </h3> <p>Last week, the Palm Beach County Commission allowed a school in the Agricultural Reserve Area. The decision showed that the county must make development in the reserve more restrictive, not less.</p> <p>Donna Klein Jewish Academy will have about 2,500 students. The school will be just north of Delray Marketplace, one of two “traditional marketplaces” allowed in the reserve under a plan designed to limit development and preserve farming.</p> <p>The school is allowed as an institutional use, and county staff recommended approval, but the school is another of the typical suburban projects that aren’t compatible with farming. As part of its current review of rules for the reserve, the county should consider whether to ban any more “institutional” projects.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><strong><em>Randy Schultz</em></strong><em> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the </em><em>Miami Herald and </em><em>Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the </em><em>Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em>    </p> <p>     </p>Randy SchultzThu, 30 Apr 2015 08:22:00 +0000 WatchCommunityMovie Review: &quot;The Avengers: Age of Ultron&quot;<p>It’s a wonder any poor humans ever leave their houses in “The Avengers: Age of Ultron.” Then again, even staying inside is a hazard, when entire city blocks—people, cars, roads, buildings—are decimated as quickly and ruthlessly as you’d swat a fly on your kitchen table, and that’s just by the <em>good guys</em> having a aerial row. Throw in an extinction-level war launched by a psychopathic, megalomaniacal villain designed from artificial intelligence, and it sounds about time to grab the cyanide and prepare to be raptured.</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/April/272836.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>But that’s life for all mankind and, and it’s a hard few days’ work for the sextet of bickering superheroes at the center of “Age of Ultron,” Joss Whedon’s rabidly anticipated sequel to his 2012 franchise debut, which opens Friday. The movie begins on an Avengers assignment already in progress: the raid of a Hydra outpost in chilly Sokovia, where the mad baron Wolfgang von Strucker has pilfered the all-powerful scepter—aka the movie’s McGuffin—and has been performing Mengele-like genetic experiments on humans. Fans of the Marvel-verse will recognize two of them: Russian twins Pietro and Wanda (Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen, the latter perhaps the only miscasting in this franchise), morally confused victims whose superpowers will eventually earn them the designations of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch.</p> <p>Whedon already displays his signature self-conscious wit in this early action scene. While Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk, Hawkeye and the Black Widow are dismantling the ceaseless horde of nameless foot soldiers outside his compound, von Strucker asks his aid, “Can we hold them?” His aid responds, incredulously, “They’re the Avengers.”</p> <p>But the inciting incident of “Age of Ultron” doesn’t occur until the Avengers are back home, and it’s fueled once again by Tony Stark’s remorse for having created weapons of mass destruction. In a road to possible annihilation paved with good intentions, he secretly enlists Bruce Banner to synthesize an A.I. component from the scepter’s gem and apply it to his “Ultron” global defense program, to create a sort of Iron Dome around Planet Earth. But “Ultron,” voiced perfectly and sarcastically by James Spader, quickly becomes sentient and downright nasty, adopting a robotic form and using his increasing synthetic power to create endless copies of himself and plot humanity’s extermination.</p> <p><img alt="" height="239" src="/site_media/uploads/April/avengers-age-of-ultron-trailer-1-ultron-avengers-logo-620x370.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>“The Age of Ultron” sits squarely in a recent science-fiction trend—A.I. run amok—that includes “Transcendence,” “Lucy” and, to some extent, “Her.” But it’s a theme that’s at least as old as “2001: A Space Odyssey,” a movie from which the robotically savvy Stark apparently hasn’t learned.</p> <p>A guilty conscience remains Stark’s cross to bear, but all of the Avengers have the screen time to unpack personal baggage in “The Age of Ultron,” and that’s where Whedon’s writing really excels. Clint Barton wants to retire from Avenging to finally live in peace with his secret family, Thor continues to reconcile his duality as an earthbound god and, most poignantly, Natasha Romanoff and Bruce Banner’s pursuit of romance is stymied by the latter’s shame at his uncontrollable transformations into the Hulk, and the damage to civilian life that inevitably follows. This is why Whedon hired an actor of Mark Ruffalo’s caliber to play a character that received such short shrift in the first Avengers movie: Banner emerges in this second installment as the tragic soul and the moral compass of the Avengers, and Ruffalo’s acting chops lift Scarlett Johansson’s up to his level.</p> <p><img alt="" height="202" src="/site_media/uploads/April/avengers-age-of-ultron-hanging-out-party.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Ultron, quick on the uptake as he is, utters one of the movie’s key lines: “I have what the Avengers never will—harmony.” Indeed, the Avengers are as dysfunctional as Congress, a collection of clashing egos and motivations and approaches and psyches. Wracked by aforementioned insecurities, they constitute the most human of any of the modern superhero movie protagonists, and “The Age of Ultron” raises the genre’s bar for character development and backstory.</p> <p>Which isn’t to say that Whedon’s film is a reinvention; it’s still an action-driven, CGI-showered, unnecessarily 3-D spectacle that adheres to a certain rhythm shared by its Marvel movie kin (sans Ang Lee’s “Hulk,” always the exception that proves the rule). But it’s damned exciting—heart-racing, even—and most importantly, it’s actually <em>deep</em>. This side of a complete and risky reworking of the genre’s moneymaking formula, this film is as rich as these type of movies can get, and should be applauded by cinephiles, comic book lovers and general audiences alike.</p>John ThomasonWed, 29 Apr 2015 14:40:39 +0000 & EventsMoviesGreat Getaways 2015<p class="p1">Looking for a great summer travel package? Check out these Florida resorts that offer great discounts for Sunshine State residents.</p> <p class="p1"><strong>Delray Sands Resort</strong></p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="366" src="/site_media/uploads/April/delraysandsresort_lowres.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">Florida residents: find your beach escape at the ALL NEW Delray Sands Resort, located on the beach between Boca Raton and Highland Beach, and save up to 20% this summer! Outdoor and indoor oceanfront dining is available at Latitudes. Valid Florida ID required. Offer is based on availability and some restrictions may apply. View our web site to book your stay or for more information.</p> <p class="p1"><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p class="p1"><strong>Edgewater Beach Hotel</strong></p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/April/pool15253_high.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">Florida residents can save 20% this summer at Naples’ only All-Suite Resort located directly on the beach. All suites feature a private balcony, kitchen with a full size refrigerator and microwave, free Wi-Fi, and more. Book online with promo code “Resident”. Valid Florida ID required and restrictions may apply. Offer is valid through 9/30/15. Visit our web site to book your stay or for more information.</p> <p class="p1"><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p class="p1"><strong>Jupiter Beach Resort &amp; Spa</strong></p> <p class="p1"><img alt="" height="310" src="/site_media/uploads/April/jupiterbeachresort_lowres.jpg" width="490"></p> <p class="p1">Surround yourself in natural beauty at the Palm Beaches’ best kept secret, Jupiter Beach Resort &amp; Spa, located directly on the ocean in northern Palm Beach county. This summer, Florida residents can save up to 30% with our Florida Resident Rate! Visit our web site to view all of our offers or to book now.</p> <p class="p2"><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p class="p2"><strong>Seagate Hotel &amp; Spa</strong></p> <p class="p2"><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/beach_club_-_poolside_copy.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Only The Seagate Hotel &amp; Spa in Delray Beach offers the amenities of a luxury resort, with the intimacy of a private retreat. Experience championship golf, oceanfront dining at our beach club, and relaxing treatments at our award-winning spa at summer rates beyond compare. FL residents enjoy 10% off room rates and a $25 resort credit* (Promo Code: DISFLA). Bookable May 1 – September 30, for stays June 1 – September 30, 2015. Based upon availability. Blackout dates may apply.</p> <p>For more information, <a href=";utm_medium=Online%20Listing&amp;utm_campaign=2015BocaMagGreatGetaways40483SHG%20" target="_blank">click here</a> or call 1-877-57-SEAGATE. The Seagate Hotel &amp; Spa is located at 1000 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach.</p> <p><strong>The Biltmore Hotel</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="467" src="/site_media/uploads/April/28065247-h1-signatureshot59.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The Biltmore Hotel is a national historic landmark located in the exclusive Coral Gables area of Miami. The 273-room resort includes 133 suites and features spectacular Mediterranean architecture over 150 acres of tropical landscape. A favorite of world leaders since its opening in 1926, the hotel offers a restored Donald Ross 18-hole, 71-par championship golf course; tennis courts; the largest hotel pool on the East Coast of the United States with private cabanas; a European spa and a renowned fitness center. The hotel’s dining destinations feature four restaurants including the award winning Palme d'Or and Fontana, a traditional Italian restaurant.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>Wyndham Deerfield</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/hotel_pix_099.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Take advantage of our Staycation special of 20% off our best available rate from May 3 to September 30, 2015. Dine with us in your choice of three on-site restaurants; Café Med, Patio Bar &amp; Grill and Burger Craze. Cool off in our Gelateria featuring authentic Italian gelato. Enjoy deluxe accommodations, complimentary welcome beverage, suntan lotion, and discounts to local restaurants and attractions. Experience all the Wyndham Deerfield Beach as to offer this summer! Call 954-428-2850 today or <a href="" target="_blank">visit our website</a> to book your beach getaway.<br><br><a href="" target="_blank"></a></p>magazineWed, 29 Apr 2015 13:29:00 +0000 Relay For Life: May 2<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Mark your calendars for the area’s first <a href=";utm_source=msn&amp;utm_medium=cpc&amp;utm_campaign=Relay+For+Life+%2D+Exact&amp;utm_content=Relay+For+Life+%2D+Exact&amp;utm_term=relay%20for%20life">Relay For Life</a> event, taking place this year in west Boca Raton on Saturday, May 2, at Olympic Heights High School (<em>20101 Lyons Road</em>). The global event is held by the American Cancer Society to honor cancer survivors, caregivers and volunteers.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/relayforlife2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>More than 4 million people from 20-plus countries participate in Relay For Life to raise money for cancer research and care, as well as awareness. At each of the Relay For Life community event, teams and individuals gather at a school, park or fairground and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team has at least one participant on the track at all times.</p> <p>Joining Relay For Life is free. The concept is that teams get together and fundraise for the American Cancer Society. There’s also fundraising that takes place during the events. Another option, if you can’t physically be at the walk, is to make a donation.</p> <p>West Boca’s event starts at 12 p.m. and ends at 12 a.m. The organizers have planned activities throughout the 12 hours, including opening and closing ceremonies, tributes to survivors and caregivers and a luminaria.</p> <p><img alt="" height="275" src="/site_media/uploads/April/relayforlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>To sign up or make a donation for the May 2 event, go to West Boca Relay For Life, go to <a href="" target="_blank">Relay For Life West Boca Raton</a>. The event contact is Jennifer DeGruccio, who you can reach at 954/200-7533 or</p> <p>Other local Relay For Life events on later Saturdays in the month include one in East Boca Raton, starting at Mizner Park Amphitheater, May 9, and in Delray Beach, starting at Old School Square Park, May 16.</p> <p>To sign up for other local Relay For Life events, go to this <a href=";event_query=33431&amp;search_type=event">link</a>.</p>Lisette HiltonWed, 29 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000;s a Map For That<p>When it comes to navigating the world of creative and original gift giving, I don’t consider myself Christopher Columbus. We moms are busy, and the thought of trying to one-up another imaginative Boca parent at the next children’s birthday party makes me want to R.S.V.P. with a big N-O. </p> <p>I think this is why <a href=""></a> was invented—for parents like me who aspire to be unique, but are practical, time poor and prone to outsourcing.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/yourlandmaps.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>My latest “crafty creation?” A <a href="">custom printed map</a> for my daughter’s 2nd birthday that highlights all that has been her “world” for the past year. </p> <p>Yes, you will find <em>Elmo Island</em> and <em>Cookie Monster Manor</em> among <em>The Torpey Islands</em> (her cousins’ islands) in Avery’s World. That’s what’s so different about this milestone gift from <a href="">Your Land Maps</a>. </p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/yourlandmaps2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>This Etsy store is the brainchild of a retired cartographer now based in Sarasota, Florida.  Years ago, he drew a sketch map for his youngest son. On it was everything that came from the important things in his (then) 3-year-old’s life: his brothers and sister, the toys he played with, his mom, his dad, his steadfast refusal to ever take a nap, and even the way he pronounced words. It hung on his wall until he went to college. After many people asked for their own versions, Your Land Maps was born.</p> <p>Here’s how it works: After selecting and purchasing a map template, you will receive a worksheet guide and blank map so you can get to work filling out all that is important to your child. We made a list and then asked family members for their input. After sending the completed documents back, a full color draft version of our map with place names was sent to us via email for approval. A few tweaks later and we received our gorgeous, printed map in the mail to frame and hang.</p> <p>We love it, and best of all, our daughter now has a beautiful memory of toddlerhood hanging on her wall for years to come. And this Boca Mom is pretty confident she has her future gift giving strategy all mapped out…</p> <p><em>Disclosure: I was given a complimentary map from </em><em>Your Land Maps</em><em> in exchange for a review of the product. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor.  Any statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with provider.</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><a href="/blog/tag/boca-mom-talk/" target="_blank">For more from Boca Mom Talk, click here.</a></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em><strong></strong>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href="" target="_blank"></a><strong>, </strong>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. <strong>Modern Boca Mom</strong> features events for both mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p> <p><em><br></em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersWed, 29 Apr 2015 00:00:00 +0000;s Coming to CityPlace<p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/April/lafayettes.png" width="490"></p> <p>The game of musical chairs that’s the restaurant scene at CityPlace will be getting authentically musical with the coming debut of <a href="" target="_blank">Lafayette’s Music Room</a>, a West Palm outlet of the Memphis original that in the 1970s was a go-to stop for musicians like Leon Russell, J.J. Cale and Billy Joel.</p> <p>Lafayette’s will slide into the old B.B. King’s space next to the Muvico theater and will feature live music—from solo pianists to local and national bands, blues to jazz to rock ‘n’ roll—seven nights a week.</p> <p>Also on the menu is “Southern food with an attitude,” which on your plate translates into dishes like shrimp &amp; andouille and Cajun crawfish pizzas, chicken ‘n’ waffles and jambalaya pasta, fried shrimp po’ boys and, of course, a thick, juicy burger. B.B. King’s had a rough go of it in CityPlace, but a place that serves good food with real music—not watered-down semi-pop dreck. . . Well, you just gotta love that.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 28 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsCooper off &amp; running, Boca&#39;s traffic woes and more<h3><img alt="" height="187" src="/site_media/uploads/cooper.jpg" width="121"></h3> <h3>Cooper off to a good start</h3> <p>Delray Beach City Manager Don Cooper had been on the job barely a month before he had to lead a daylong discussion in mid-February of the city’s goals. To Mayor Cary Glickstein, Cooper’s performance validated the decision he made last November with commissioners Jordana Jarjura and Shelly Petrolia to hire Cooper.</p> <p>“He really ran that meeting well,” Glickstein said in an interview. “What that tells me is that he assimilated a lot in a very short time.” This month, at a workshop, the commission “basically codified” those goals, Glickstein said. Among them are improvements to the city’s parking and public works systems.</p> <p>As I found in my survey of commissioners, Glickstein’s, Jarjura’s and Petrolia’s assessments of Cooper as he nears four months on the job are very similar. They praise Cooper for getting to know the city’s needs so quickly. They also want the manager to quickly surround himself with enough good people that Cooper can devote more of his time to the biggest issues.</p> <p>All three elected officials noted that Delray’s outward appearance masks the management problems they hired Cooper to fix. Glickstein compared Delray Beach to a finely restored “jalopy.” The outside looks great—Atlantic Avenue and surrounding areas, the public beach—but “look under the hood” when it comes to delivering services “and we’re not at the level where we need to be. He has seen what we need to do to get there.”</p> <p>In terms of management, Petrolia said of Delray Beach, “We’re a broken-up, broken-down machine.” Problems started in the last years of David Harden’s long tenure that ended at the end of 2012. In 2013 and 2014, Delray operated under one city manager whom the commission had to force out and an interim.</p> <p>Petrolia called Cooper’s work at the goal-setting “fantastic,” but she worries that Cooper “had a very limited understanding of what he was getting himself into.” She is concerned about an organizational chart that shows every key department reporting directly to Cooper. Like Glickstein, she wants Cooper to hire a second assistant city manager. “We’re not getting enough in the ‘Done’ box.”</p> <p>And as Cooper deals with all the expected issues, Petrolia said, “Every time we turn around, we find something else.” Example: Developers have been able to write a check to the city in lieu of adding workforce housing to their market-rate units. At a recent meeting, no one seemed to know exactly where in city government all those checks have gone. The commission has asked Cooper to find out.</p> <p>Jarjura is “pleased with the manager’s ability to quickly understand the issues we have,” and also praised his work at the goal-setting session. “Now it is time for him to focus on a strong support team—upper management, department heads and perhaps a retool of the organizational structure. It’s clear our issues are too big for one man to handle alone, and I would like to see us shift from reactionary governing to innovative, forward-thinking leadership.”</p> <p>Mitch Katz joined the commissioner just a month ago, so he didn’t want to make any broad assessments. He did say, though, that Cooper seemed “a little overwhelmed.”</p> <p>Yet Cooper also seems to be finding his way. He has made his first big hire. Tim Stillings will replace Dana Little as director of Planning and Zoning. Stillings holds that job in Wellington, where he also supervises the Building Department. Those are separate in Delray Beach, but Glickstein said the city might combine the two as part of management reorganization. Though Wellington is more of a suburban-style city than Delray, Glickstein said Stillings has experience in urban planning.</p> <p>Petrolia noted that Cooper brought all the department heads to the goal-setting session. She, Glickstein and Jarjura have complained about a management structure of “silos,” in which where there’s not much communication from department to department and from departments to the manager and commission.</p> <p>Another management failing especially has bugged Glickstein since last year’s Office of Inspector General report on former Manager Louie Chapman. The report found that Chapman had deceived the commission on a purchase of trash bins. After the report came out, it became clear that city employees’ understanding of purchasing policies differed from department to department.</p> <p>Glickstein said Monday that Cooper is moving to create a separate office that will handle procurement and manage contracts—“as is the case in most private companies.” Such a system, he said, would be “far more efficient” than having a purchasing staff in every department, “which is just not working.”</p> <p>On Wednesday, Cooper will be part of a commission workshop with the Community Redevelopment Agency. That will be his first public meeting with the CRA, which is part of the city but is separate from the commission and sometimes has its own ideas. His most important test will come next month, when Delray Beach switches trash haulers. Cooper went through such a switch when he was the manager in Port St. Lucie.</p> <p>Cooper will need to keep sprinting for a while. It will he progress if by year’s end he can slow to a run.</p> <h3>MIA easement</h3> <p>The Delray Beach City Commission has made the right decision in seeking an outside legal opinion on the missing Atlantic Crossing easement, but the decision is risky.</p> <p>To review, the first site plan for the mixed-use project west of Veterans Park contained Atlantic Court, which would provide access from the west off Federal Highway. The current plat also shows the road. In January 2014, the then-city commission approved a new site plan that does not show Atlantic Court.</p> <p>The developers, citing a favorable court ruling in a lawsuit brought by neighbors of the project, contend that in approving the new site plan, the city abandoned Atlantic Court, as the city had—willingly and knowingly—abandoned Northeast Seventh Avenue and other alleys for the project. Critics, including a majority on the current commission, argue that the city did not knowingly and willingly give up Atlantic Court 15 months ago.</p> <p>City Attorney Noel Pfeffer was not with the city at that time. Neither was City Manager Don Cooper. The agenda for that January 2014 meeting refers to the site plan but not to abandonment of Atlantic Court. So at its May 5 meeting the commission will hire a land-use lawyer to render an opinion.</p> <p>“We need an expert in the field,” said Commissioner Mitch Katz, who suggested the idea. Commissioner Jordana Jarjura agrees, as long as the review doesn’t last long. She raises a good point.</p> <p>Despite continuing public anger over Atlantic Crossing in general and the road in particular—critics say that the developers duped the city in order to change to a more profitable design—Delray Beach must resolve the Atlantic Court issue soon or face a lawsuit from the developers, who are moving ahead with demolition. The Planning &amp; Zoning Board last week gave preliminary approval to a new plat without Atlantic Court. As Jarjura said, “It’s time to bring finality to this divisive project.”</p> <p>If the lawyer believes that the city has a good case, the opinion could bring about a compromise on Atlantic Court—put it back in the plan—that the developers could offer themselves if they want to improve public perception of the project. If, however, the lawyer believes that the 2014 site plan approval covered Atlantic Court, the city “wouldn’t be left with a lot of other options,” Katz said.</p> <p>Petrolia would like to hire a lawyer from the same firm that in 2013 concluded that Delray Beach could sue to avoid its trash contract. That opinion led to a rebidding of the contract, and savings in the millions. Since the firm once brought good news, Petrolia’s theory is this: “Who better to deliver bad news, if that’s what the ruling is, to people who are ready to lynch somebody?”</p> <h3>Same sex marriage on the docket</h3> <p>The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments today regarding the constitutionality of state bans on same-sex marriages. The lead case is from Ohio, and it has been consolidated with three others from Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee. They make up the U.S. 6<sup>th</sup> Circuit Court of Appeals, which in November ruled that trial court judges wrongly struck down marriage bans in those states. The plaintiffs have appealed. Other appeals courts have ruled that the bans are unconstitutional.</p> <p>In Florida, judges at the federal and state level – including one in Palm Beach County—also have ruled that this state’s ban is unconstitutional. Opinion among legal analysts is divided on how the court might rule. One option is that the justices could say that same-sex marriage is a matter for state courts, after which the two cases from Miami-Dade and Monroe counties that the 3<sup>rd</sup> District Court of Appeal consolidated would be up for review by the Florida Supreme Court.</p> <p>Interestingly, according to the Pew Research Center, opinion also remains divided among Americans as to why people are gay or lesbian. In the center’s most recent poll, 42 percent of respondents said being homosexual is “just how someone chooses to live,” while 41 percent of respondents said people are “born gay or lesbian.” Yet that’s a big change from the late 1970s, when almost 60 percent said homosexual was a matter of choice while about 15 percent said people were born gay or lesbian.</p> <h3>Boca traffic woes  </h3> <p>There’s never a shortage of traffic issues in Boca Raton. One of the most persistent is the intersection of Northeast Fifth Avenue and Palmetto Park Road.</p> <p>At Monday’s city council workshop, Mayor Susan Haynie said the intersection poses the biggest traffic challenge in the city—now. That’s without construction of Palmetto Promenade and its nearly 400 apartments just to the west. That’s without the Houston’s restaurant the city hopes will occupy the Wildflower site across Fifth Avenue to the east.</p> <p>A resident presented his own ideas to the council on Monday. Among those ideas was removing the traffic light —backups can be long after the bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway has closed—and rerouting westbound drivers headed for Federal Highway. Beginning in June or July, a consultant will conduct a three-month study that also will produce recommendations.</p> <p>Council members asked Boca Raton Traffic Engineer Doug Hess about the resident’s suggestions. His hesitation and body language suggested reluctance. Hess noted that rerouting traffic means potentially annoying other people. He acknowledged, however, that Boca Raton had four-laned nearby Mizner Boulevard to avoid widening Federal Highway, and that the “volume never developed.” Mizner thus might be able to take more cars.</p> <p>Haynie reminded Hess and everyone else that the Camino Real Bridge will be closed for nine months next year for improvements. The traffic study will be complete in early fall. So might a lease with the company that wants to operate the Houston’s. The need for a solution at Fifth and Palmetto is developing quickly.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 28 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: April 28 to May 4<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/April/pippin-2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Pippin”</strong></p> <p>Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25 to $85</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-7469, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>When it’s done right, theatrical drama and Cirque du Soleil spectacle find perfect harmony in “Pippin,” Stephen Schwartz’s 1972 musical about a restless young prince searching for the meaning of life. Originally choreographed by Bob Fosse, the show’s wafer-thin plot is secondary to the legendarily ravishing choreography and the carnivalesque ambience. The tour of the 2013 Tony-winning revival captures much of the exciting pulse that drew audiences to the first “Pippin,” before the show become watered down by decades of unlicensed and amateur productions. There are pole dancers, hoop spinners, jugglers, contortionists, acrobats and knife throwers, not to mention romance, meta-theatrical comedy and an endless phalanx of inventive costumes, in a show that needs to be seen to be believed. It runs through May 3 only.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="220" src="/site_media/uploads/April/static1.squarespace.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Piano Slam 7</strong></p> <p>Where: Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free, but reservations recommended</p> <p>Contact: 305/949-6722, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The streetwise tradition of slam poetry receives a jolt of concert-hall elegance at this exceptional youth program, now in its seventh year at the Arsht Center. The concept is this: Aspiring middle- and high-school poets listened to a piano composition, then wrote a poem inspired by the music. The best pieces, selected by an acclaimed literary jury, will be performed by their writers onstage, this Thursday, backed by a live music mash-up: Piano duo Yoo &amp; Kim will mix Mozart, Rachmaninoff and Bach with hip-hop beats by DJ Brimstone 127. Teo Castellanos, one of Miami’s most talented theatrical exports, will direct the production.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/adult_beginners.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Adult Beginners”</strong></p> <p>Where: Living Room Theaters at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: Show times pending</p> <p>Cost: $6.50 to $9.50</p> <p>Contact: 561/549-2600, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>A dynamite cast will, hopefully, help this independent comedy explode. Writer/actor Nick Kroll plays a narcissistic entrepreneur who crashes and burns, loses boatloads of money for his clients, and finds himself bunking with his estranged pregnant sister, brother-in-law and their 3-year-old son, who supposedly have it all together, whatever “it” is. The movie has been called “holistic,” “insightful” and “sensitive” in early reviews, tapping the same family-centric, seriocomic vein as last year’s “The Skeleton Twins.” That terrific cast includes Bobby Cannavale, Joel McHale, Jan Krakowski, John Charles, Bobby Moynihan and Mike Birbiglia.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="239" src="/site_media/uploads/April/ggmain.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Gilbert Gottfried</strong></p> <p>Where: Delray Beach Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $50 ($100 for VIP tickets)</p> <p>Contact: 561/243-7922, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Last season, on “Celebrity Apprentice,” Gilbert Gottfried had the hilarious, unmitigated audacity to compare Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler … to Donald Trump’s face! It should come as a surprise to no one that Gottfried didn’t last much longer on the hit NBC series; getting fired for un-P.C. barbs is kind of his thing. Just ask Aflac, which ended Gottfried’s lucrative tenure as its spokes-duck after he tweeted off-color jokes about the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. But for fans of the screechy-voiced comic, his ruthlessness at pillorying such sacred cows continues to ensure packed comedy clubs wherever he performs, in an act that is old-fashioned in its approach and cutting-edge in its content. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/April/1428827587_10641140_970732866279627_2717284194529923393_n.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson”</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For a man who appears on our $20 bills, you may not know a lot about Andrew Jackson. But if you believe the 2009 cult musical “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson,” our seventh president was a complicated bad-ass with a wicked temper, a populist streak, a rather unfortunate relationship with Native Americans, and an ability to tell an intransigent Congress to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine (the White House’s current occupant could learn a thing or two from this latter tendency). Somewhat embellished and purportedly a lot of fun, “Bloody Bloody” includes such songs as “Populism, Yea Yea!” and “Crisis Averted.” It’s driven by a propulsive emo-rock score played by a band that performs on the same stage as the actors, and it should be a perfect fit for Outre Theatre Company, which specializes in challenging, offbeat work. It runs through May 17.</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="280" src="/site_media/uploads/April/sleepingbeauty.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Boca Ballet Theatre’s “The Sleeping Beauty”</strong></p> <p>Where: FAU’s University Theatre, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday</p> <p>Cost: $25-$35</p> <p>Contact: 561/995-0709, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Back in 1890, it was hard to go wrong with “The Sleeping Beauty,” a ballet that married the talents of heavy hitters in music composition (Tchaikovsky), choreography (Marius Petipa) and storytelling (it’s based on the classic fairy tale by Charles Perrault). By 1903, it had become the most popular ballet in the Imperial Ballet’s repertory, having been performed 200 times in just 10 years. The three-act epic is centered on the eternal struggle between good and evil, as represented by the Lilac Fairy and Carabosse, respectively, and each of them dances a signature leitmotif. Other characters include the Queen, King Florestan and Aurora. See why this ballet continues to enchant generations young and old at this Boca Ballet Theatre production staged by Co-Artistic Director Dan Guin. The production will feature guest artists Bridgett Zehr of the National Ballet of Canada and Nehemiah Kish of the Royal Ballet of London.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="466" src="/site_media/uploads/April/ww1.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Fort Lauderdale Fringe Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward College’s Willis Holcombe Center, 111 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: Noon to 10 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $5 to $10 per play</p> <p>Contact: 954/201-6884, <a href=""></a></p> <p>It’s hard to believe, with its rich tradition of art fairs, book fairs, film festivals and music fests, that South Florida has never had a fringe festival—a collective showcase of original plays, running from 15 minutes to an hour or more, presented in an unjuried, uncensored, cost-effective manner. Broward College has finally taken the initiative to launch the inaugural Fort Lauderdale Fringe Festival, offering one-day-only productions of more than 20 plays featuring top theater professionals, and artist-directed by Carbonell nominee Vanessa Elise. The plays run a fascinating gamut from small ensemble comedies to solo shows (like Casey Dressler's "The Wedding Warrior," pictured) about real-life experiences, from dance productions to improv comedy shows—there’s even a Spanglish musical and a play performed in the style of Japanese Noh theater. The works will be performed on three black box-style indoor theaters, while outside, musicians will play for tips at a free street fair, which includes food trucks and vendors. Support this event and, with any luck, it will expand to more days and more artists in the years to come.</p>John ThomasonMon, 27 Apr 2015 13:46:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsNo Oak, No Kidding. . .<p><img alt="" height="530" src="/site_media/uploads/April/chamisalpn.jpg" width="300"></p> <p>I don’t often do blog posts about wine. Almost never, really. But over the weekend I tasted a wine that was so good and so different. . . well, I just can’t help myself.</p> <p>If you at all pay attention to what’s happening in the wine world, you’ve probably heard of (or even helped perpetuate) a growing boomlet in unoaked Chardonnays. The idea is that by not fermenting or aging Chardonnay in oak, like virtually every Chardonnay in the world (okay, the cheap stuff typically goes for wood chips), you let the natural aromas and flavors of the grape stand out. No oaky-toasty overtones, no creamy vanilla, just the pure expression of Chardonnay.</p> <p>And now someone has done the same with. . . wait for it. . . Pinot Noir. That would be Chamisal Vineyards, the first winery to plant in California’s Edna Valley and one of the state’s leading proponents of oak-free Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs.</p> <p>I’d never tasted an unoaked Pinot before, and the winery’s <strong>2013 Central Coast Pinot Noir</strong> delivered such bright, fresh and lively red cherry-cranberry-plum flavors balanced by tangy yet subtle acidity that I practically polished off the bottle before dinner. Some say it’s like a Cru Beaujolais, and that’s not a bad analogy. With our weather heating up, this is the perfect summer wine. . . not a cheap wine for backyard guzzling but an exuberantly refreshing wine of real depth and character that should appeal to wine geeks and novices alike.</p> <p>I’m not sure where you can find it locally, but it is available for $24 at the <a href="" target="_blank">Chamisal website</a>. Great stuff. I’m placing my order.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 27 Apr 2015 11:23:00 +0000 & ReviewsBreakfast Joint Opens in Lake Worth<p><img alt="" height="496" src="/site_media/uploads/April/eggscetera.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, or so they tell us. Of course, hardly anyone actually eats breakfast, unless you consider a piece of toast or half a bagel washed down with a slurry of strong coffee a proper breakfast.</p> <p>But if you’re one of those folks with the time and intestinal fortitude to tackle a full-on meal early in the morning, welcome to <strong>Eggs-Cetera Cafe</strong> (<em>6346 Lantana Road, Lake Worth, 561/968-8200</em>), a cozy little breakfast and lunch joint at Lantana and Jog Roads.</p> <p>It’s a cute little space with some outside dining, nothing fancy, which pretty much describes the extensive menu of familiar, comforting breakfast and lunch dishes. There are, of course, all manner of egg dishes, omelets and pancakes, as well as waffles, crepes and variations (lobster, salmon, steak) on the Benedict theme, along with juices and espresso.</p> <p>At lunch there’s a roster of composed salads, sandwiches and burgers, plus seafood dishes from fried shrimp to grilled fish tacos and a handful of small plates. Prices are pretty reasonable, with almost everything on the menu coming in under $10 so if you are one of those people who eats a hearty breakfast, you won’t choke on the bill.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 27 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsSunFest Preview: The Best of the Rest<p>You probably know about the headliners of next week’s <a href="" target="_blank">SunFest</a> (April 29-May 3), names like Fall Out Boy, Stone Temple Pilots and Sammy Hagar—and we’ll be reviewing the likes of Wilco, Hozier and The Pixies following their performances.</p> <p>But what’s great about this festival is that it provides ample opportunities to discover new talent. Here are the top five undercard acts at this year’s SunFest, which give us plenty of reasons to show up early.</p> <p><img alt="" height="255" src="/site_media/uploads/April/1361471566-knox_hamilton.jpg" width="380"></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>5. Knox Hamilton (5:15 p.m. April 30)</strong></a></p> <p>There’s not much music available online to sample this Little Rock-based quartet—just one song, really, but don’t be surprised if you’ll want to download it instantly and play the hell out of it until SunFest. It’s called “Work it Out,” and, like Bleachers and The Postal Service, there’s an old-is-new-again nostalgia to this tune, a piece of irrepressibly catchy dance-pop gold driven by sunny keyboards and groovy guitars, not to mention the jarring but welcome disconnect between the frontman’s fragile indie-pop tenor and his grizzled mountaineer look. “Work it Out” has received regular airplay on SiriusXM, and it would be a hit on terrestrial radio too, if FM radio wasn’t run by a soulless corporate behemoth. The group has released three EPs in its hometown, so expect more where that infectious tune came from.</p> <p><img alt="" height="228" src="/site_media/uploads/April/shapeimage_3.png" width="490"></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>4. The Spazmatics (5:15 p.m. May 3)</strong></a></p> <p>If you think popular music takes itself too seriously, The Spazmatics are the group for you. Legend has it the band formed in a high school in California circa 1983, when Kevin Stigwood, a physics teacher, lost a debate to a student about quantum theory and was subjected to performing Thomas Dolby’s “She Blinded Me With Science” at a state basketball game as punishment. The band he corralled for the gig became the Spazmatics, a 1980s cover band awash in kitsch: Its members don apparel from “Revenge of the Nerds”—think pocket protectors, bowties, taped glasses and ghastly plaid pants—and perform choreographed dance moves to such decade-defining hits as “Whip It,” “Faith,” “I Love Rock and Roll” and many more. Beyond the surface humor, the Spazmatics are genuinely good musicians; Brad Gillis, of Ozzy Osbourne’s band, called them “the best ‘80s cover band I’ve ever seen.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="208" src="/site_media/uploads/April/cc6urioukaaf53s.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>3. The McNaughstys (5:45 p.m. May 1)</strong></a></p> <p>Los Angeles’ The McNaughstys aren’t the first group to find common ground between Irish music and punk rock: Dropkick Murphys and Flogging Molly famously paved the way. But they go further than these pioneers in capturing the spirit of Irish history, culture and music: Bagpipes and violins are just as prominent as shredding, three-chord guitar riffs, blitzkrieg drumming and anthemic vocals, and the band’s lyrical content captures its heritage through tunes like “Shea’s Rebellion,” “O’Malley” and the sea shanty “The Ship is Going Down.” It’s Green Day meets The Chieftans, authentic enough to expand the musical horizons of both groups’ fans. It actually makes perfect sense that The McNaughstys are opening SunFest for another crossover artist, Lindsey Stirling.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/ffdb4c_39219a65871343f0aa3e3940e31646fe-jpg_srz_980_653_75_22_0-50_1-20_0-00_jpg_srz.jpeg" width="490"></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>2. Kehlani (7:45 p.m. May 2)</strong></a></p> <p>Sometimes, Piers Morgan can be right. When Kehlani, a fresh-faced 16-year-old and the only girl in her high-school band Poplyfe, performed on “America’s Got Talent” in 2011, Morgan told her, “I think you’ve got talent, but I don’t think you need the group.” Her ambitions have, indeed, outlived Poplyfe; she’s matured along with her music, striking out as a solo artist with a self-released  mixtape that <em>Complex</em> magazine named one of the best albums of 2014. The sky is the limit for this R&amp;B/hip-hop superstar of tomorrow, whose ancestry—black, white, Native American, Hispanic and Filipino—places her uniquely in a 21<sup>st</sup> century musical melting pot. Her debut LP “You Should Be Here” hits retailers the week of her SunFest performance, and offers an eclectic introduction to her music. See her now, before she blows up the Internet.</p> <p><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/April/elliot_root.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>1. Elliot Root (7 p.m. May 2)</strong></a></p> <p>Nashville spawns so many imaginative roots-music artists that it’s mighty hard to transcend the horde of Tennessee bands and singer-songwriters craving residency on your stereo. Credit Elliot Root for doing just that. This soulful Music City quartet has been plying its sophisticated songcraft for a few years now, discovering a timeless aesthetic that would sound as appropriate piping from a Starbucks as a downtown rock club. Calling to mind City and Colour and Red House Painters, it’s really poetry put to music, from the haunting elegy “Body Down” to the radio-ready “Soul is Fire.” Both of these are available on Elliot Root’s new “EP II,” released in March as an appetizer to its forthcoming full-length debut, “Thoughts From Yesterday.” </p> <p><em>Tickets are still available for SunFest; visit its website for details.</em></p>John ThomasonFri, 24 Apr 2015 09:00:00 +0000 & EventsMusicUpcoming EventsHot Pot Is New Boca Hot Spot<p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/hotpot.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Sushi bars are as common in these parts as steakhouses, which is to say as common as dirt. Taiwanese hot pot eateries? Eh, not so much.</p> <p>So Asian food lovers in the mood for something different likely won’t mourn the passing at the end of last year of Jidai Kaiten Sushi in West Boca, despite the restaurant’s somewhat novel (for our little town, at least) sushi-on-a-conveyor belt setup. In its place now is <strong>Lemon Grass Hot Pot</strong> (<em>21073 Powerline Road, 561/609-2200</em>), a DIY hot pot eatery that lets you cook your own meal at your table in individual hot pots full of bubbling broth.</p> <p>Jidai Kaiten’s old triangular conveyor belt is still there, though now it holds pots full of fresh veggies you can add to proteins held in covered coolers. There’s beef and lamb and pork, assorted fish and shellfish, and a half-dozen different broths to choose from. Cost is $25 a person, all you can eat.</p> <p>The place itself is pretty slick, all black and white and red and gray, dominated by the giant conveyor belt in the center of the room. It’s an interesting concept; we’ll see if it has legs. . .</p>Bill CitaraFri, 24 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsStaff Picks: food and entertainment<p><strong>Bogart’s of Boca + Movie at Cinemark</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="331" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bogarts.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Meshi Shoshona, Events + Sales Coordinator</em></p> <p>“My boyfriend and I went there on a Saturday night absolutely loved it. The food and service was fantastic. We started with hummus and crackers. For our main dishes, he got a turkey burger, and I got a delicious rare tuna salad. After that, we watched a movie in Cinemark’s premier seating area, which had big and comfy seats.”</p> <p>3200 Airport Road, Boca Raton // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>Sushi Rock Café on Las Olas</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/sushirocklasolas.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>“The next time I make it over to Sushi Rock Café, I’m fasting beforehand. This place is completely unassuming from the outside. (I’ve driven past it too many times to count without as much as a glace in its direction.) And just as unassuming on the inside – a capacity of what I estimate to be less than 100, with neon lights in place of crown molding. But its melt-in-your-mouth sashimi and incredible boats of sushi are unbeatable. Note: GET THE WHITE TUNA.”</p> <p>1515 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale // 954/462-5541</p> <p><strong>Homemade Meatballs from Bedner’s</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bedners.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“The homemade meatballs from Bedner’s have some little cheesy (in a good way) kick I can’t exactly place, but it’s worth the drive to get a tray. Not to mention all the gorgeous produce, boiled peanuts and homegrown tomatoes.”</p> <p>10065 Lee Road, Boynton Beach // 561/733-5490</p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 24 Apr 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Delray Rocks &amp; Boynton does not, plus more<h3><img alt="" height="241" src="/site_media/uploads/star_of_david.jpg" width="209"></h3> <h3>The Chabad saga</h3> <p>Let us hope that in a month there is no reason to wonder if anti-Semitism is at work in Boca Raton.</p> <p>A curious thing happened at last week’s city council meeting. On the agenda was an application for a development project. The Planning &amp; Zoning Board had approved the project. The staff had recommended that the council approve the project, with some conditions.</p> <p>Then City Manager Leif Ahnell said he wanted the council to delay its decision because the applicant had failed to provide some information. Something about the floor-to-area ratio: square footage of the building divided by square footage of the lot. The higher the ratio, the denser the project. The issue supposedly had arisen three hours before the meeting. Staff wanted to delay action until May.</p> <p>None it made sense. Normally, only an applicant asks for such a late delay. The applicant wanted no such delay. Indeed, the applicant didn’t want to wait even a month after having to wait nearly seven years.</p> <p>The applicant is Chabad East Boca, a congregation of Orthodox Jews that long ago outgrew its space just off Sanborn Square. In 2008, the congregation planned to buy six contiguous properties east of Mizner Park, two of them facing Mizner Boulevard. As Ruvi New, the founding rabbi of Chabad East Boca, pointed out to me this week, there are two busy churches at either end of that stretch of Mizner Boulevard: First United Methodist to the north and St. Gregory’s Episcopal to the south. What could have been wrong with Chabad East Boca joining them?</p> <p>Something, apparently. After criticism from neighbors about parking and a series of public hearings, the council changed the rules regarding parking for houses of worship in a way that prevented Chabad East Boca’s move.</p> <p>So to say that Rabbi New is suspicious of what happened last week would be an understatement. “I was most definitely not aware of any problems,” he said. “What happened was highly unusual. Almost unprecedented.”</p> <p>This time, Chabad East Boca wants to build where La Vielle Maison once served great French food: on the south side of Palmetto Park Road, just east of the Intracoastal Waterway. The property is zoned for the sanctuary, museum and social hall that Chabad East Boca wants to build. Rabbi New said many of the congregants walk to services because they observe the Jewish Sabbath by not operating motor vehicles. Nevertheless, to alleviate traffic problems Chabad East Boca would have underground parking. The congregation could not use all parts of the building at once. Attendance at High Holy Days services would be capped.</p> <p>Chabad East Boca even had the right team of advocates: lawyer Mitchell Kirschner and architect Derek Vander Ploeg, who are regulars before the council and usually succeed. But just as Chabad East Boca’s potential neighbors were opposed in 2008, they are opposed in 2015. One of them flagged a supposed miscalculation in that floor-to-area ratio, though Vander Ploeg said he met with city staff on that calculation “before we even filed.”</p> <p>One can assume that the potential neighbor didn’t alert the staff in hopes of making the project better. The idea is to stop the project, or perhaps persuade Chabad East Boca to consider, as some online postings have suggested, a site on “House of Worship Row”—the south side of Yamato Road east of Patch Reef Park.</p> <p>As Rabbi New explains, however, Chabad congregations are the opposite of mega-churches. They are intensely local, so he can’t move far from the current location. Many congregants, he said, live on A1A near the new site.</p> <p>Councilman Robert Weinroth, who at first opposed the delay, theorized that any miscalculation might have occurred because a sliver of the property is zoned residential, meaning that it couldn’t be included in the ration. Vander Ploeg said, “It might have been a miscommunication more than anything else.” Councilman Mike Mullaugh, who also first opposed postponement, said the city needs to make sure that there are no “inconsistencies.” If there were, the Planning &amp; Zoning Board approval was “invalid.”</p> <p>Ironically, if Rabbi New were not asking for 10 feet, 8 inches of added height—which city staff recommended the council approve—Chabad East Boca wouldn’t have needed more than Planning &amp; Zoning Board approval. The city allows the extra height about 30 feet for the main sanctuary, but Chabad East Boca also wants it for the museum exhibit hall due for Vander Ploeg called “functionality” reasons.</p> <p>Interestingly, just before the council changed those parking rules in 2008, Cooper City in Broward County had to pay a Chabad synagogue $325,000 for keeping it out of the city through discriminatory zoning. Vander Ploeg said Wednesday he has sent the revised calculation to the city. The plan is for the project to go back before the Planning &amp; Zoning Board on May 7. If approved, the project would return to the council on May 27. Will the project get through this time? “I can’t see any reason why it shouldn’t,” Vander Ploeg said. If it doesn’t, Boca Raton better have a very good reason.</p> <h3>Boynton loses yet another one</h3> <p>On Tuesday, we saw another example of why Delray Beach is Delray Beach and why Boynton Beach is, well, Boynton Beach.</p> <p>Before the Palm Beach County Commission was a recommendation from the staff that the county sell 5 vacant acres of surplus land north of Lake Ida Park in Delray along the east side of Interstate 95. Directly north of that property is a roughly 23-acre site on which a developer plans to build large homes. The developer had offered $500,000 for those 5 acres, on which he would build more homes. The staff liked that option. “As an alternative,” the memo to commissioner stated, “the City of Delray Beach has recently expressed interest in buying the property, which Staff does not recommend.”</p> <p>Yet the commission voted 6-1 for the sale to Delray. And therein, as the saying goes, lies a tale.</p> <p>Boynton Beach had first shot at the land, and could have had it for the same $100,000. The city commission, however, turned it down, with Mayor Jerry Taylor saying the city had other needs. That decision led to the sort of sniping that for decades has tainted the commission.</p> <p>In contrast, the Delray Beach City Commission responded quickly, collectively and effectively.</p> <p>Last week, commissioners indicated their interest in going after the property. So on Tuesday, it was a Delray Beach commissioner—Shelly Petrolia—not one from Boynton Beach arguing that preserving the land could help create a greenway and ideally could make the site part of the popular El Rio Trail. “Green space is something we don’t have a lot of on the coast,” Petrolia told me.</p> <p>As the staff noted, there are obstacles to making the land part of a trail system. In 1950, the Lake Worth Drainage District dug a canal that divides the property from Lake Ida Park. A bridge to the northern edge of the park could cost between $250,000 and $400,000. If there’s no other way to get in and out, the developer has said he won’t allow access through his property.</p> <p>Yet when Delray Beach is at its best, the city tries to find ways around problems. Petrolia says I-95 might provide an easement. The county’s Caloosa Park is slightly north on the west side of the highway. Over time, the developer might realize that a trail would raise the value of the homes. And because donors will put the sale price, buying the land won’t cost Delray Beach.</p> <p>County Commissioner Steven Abrams, who represents the area, rebutted claims by neighbors that preserving the land would make their lives worse. “On the one hand,” he told me, “they said there’s no way to get to the property. On the other, they said they would be overrun.” As for the theory that those donors would develop their own homes, Abrams counters that the contract will be with the city and will contain restrictions on use.</p> <p>Truth be told, at least one of those donors may be acting out of enlightened self-interest. Taylor Levy owns a home on the east side of Lake Ida facing the property. He would rather see green than homes, even expensive ones. But if the public benefits, what does that matter? And if the sale brings a big public benefit, we know which city will get credit for trying.</p> <h3>The disappearing Delray easement</h3> <p>By a vote of 5-1, the Delray Beach’s Planning and Zoning Board gave preliminary approval to a new plat for Atlantic Crossing that does not include the Atlantic Crossing easement. The plat must return for a final vote before it goes to the city commission.</p> <p>The plat now matches the site plan the commission approved in January 2014—when Delray had a different city manager and city attorney—without the staff making clear that the city was giving up the easement. Neighbors believe that the easement, off Federal Highway, would ease the traffic issues from the mixed-use project.</p> <p>Monday’s night meeting was packed with those who want the easement back in. I’ll have more on this next week.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 23 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunitySeasonal Finds: Twist on Crab Cakes<p><img alt="" height="343" src="/site_media/uploads/April/crabcake.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>I’ve been so inspired by the bounties of spring produce recently available at our local markets here in South Florida. Among the plethora of springtime vegetables are fresh leeks, which have two annual harvest seasons—spring and winter. Spring leeks are generally smaller and sweeter than winter leeks. They taste like a cross between mild onion and garlic. Leeks are often added into soups, vegetable medleys and gratin recipes. In this recipe they are mixed into a spring-inspired crab cake feast.</p> <p>Given that it’s peak season for leeks, now is a great time to experiment with this yummy and remarkably healthy veggie. One cup of leeks contains only 54 calories. In addition, they are packed with vitamins A and K, thus promoting bone growth, blood-flow regulation and healthy blood cell development.</p> <p>For those unfamiliar with fresh leeks, here are a few tips:</p> <p>1) <strong>Selection process</strong>: Look for firm and straight leeks with dark green leaves with bright white stalks.</p> <p>2) <strong>Freshness window</strong>: Fresh leeks can be stored in the refrigerator for one to two weeks.</p> <p>3) <strong>That's a wrap</strong>: Try storing them in plastic wrap or placing them in a sealed plastic bag to preserve moisture before using.</p> <p>4) <strong>Clock is ticking</strong>: Once the leeks have been cooked, they become highly perishable; you’ll have two days, max, to use them.</p> <p>Leeks and fresh crabmeat are a heavenly pairing in this recipe, and I’ve included fresh parsley and spring onion to enhance the sweetness of their flavors. The fennel seed remoulade—made from Greek yogurt, lime juice and fennel seed—is a tangy and healthier spin off of a traditional mayo-packed remoulade.</p> <p>Enjoy!</p> <p><strong>Spring Leek Crab Cakes with Fennel Seed Remoulade</strong></p> <p><em>Makes 4-6 crab cakes</em></p> <p><strong>Remoulade Ingredients</strong></p> <p>5 ounces plain Greek yogurt</p> <p>1 teaspoon lime juice</p> <p>1 teaspoon lime zest</p> <p>1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds</p> <p>Salt and pepper to taste </p> <p><strong>Crab Cake Ingredients</strong></p> <p>1/2 cup leeks, finely diced</p> <p>1/4 cup spring onion, finely diced</p> <p>2 eggs, whisked </p> <p>1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped, plus more for garnish</p> <p>3/4 cup mayonnaise </p> <p>1/2 teaspoon salt </p> <p>1/4 teaspoon pepper </p> <p>1 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs  </p> <p>1/2 pound lump crabmeat </p> <p>2 tablespoons canola oil </p> <p><strong>Directions</strong></p> <p><strong></strong>1) Make remoulade by mixing all ingredients together and whisking to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.</p> <p>2) In a large mixing bowl combine leeks, onion, eggs, parsley, mayonnaise, salt, pepper and 1/2 cup bread crumbs. Stir to combine ingredients, then fold crabmeat into the form mixture until fully incorporated. Use your hands to form the crab cakes.</p> <p>3) Place remaining 1 cup bread crumbs onto a plate and lightly coat crab cakes on the top and bottom.</p> <p>4) Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté crab cakes, in batches, for 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown on one side. Serve topped with remoulade and garnish with parsley for serving. </p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong>About Amanda Jane</strong></p> <p><em>Amanda Jane is the creator of the food blog <a href="" target="_blank">Seasonally Jane</a>, a creative space where she shares her love of seasonally inspired cooking through original recipes, photography and writing.  Seasonally Jane celebrates the use of peak-season fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on organic whole foods and unique ingredients. Amanda launched her blog in September 2014 and is based in Lighthouse Point.</em></p>Amanda JaneThu, 23 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Movie Review: &quot;The Water Diviner&quot;<p>It is the great actor’s lot in life that he can’t <em>just</em> be a great actor. He must also direct! Yes, because that is the where a film’s creative pulse is generated—not in the hands of actors herded into position like cattle, as Hitchcock so bluntly dismissed them, but in the cowherd calling the shots.</p> <p>When he’s not singing, Russell Crowe is usually a great actor, but as he proves in “The Water Diviner,” his first film behind the lens, he is no director.</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/April/the-water-diviner_704_2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Set largely in Istanbul and surrounding Turkish cities in the aftermath of World War I—but shot mostly in Australia—“The Water Diviner” also stars Crowe as Connor, the intuitive-bordering-on-psychic title character, who uses dowsing rods to locate wells deep beneath his draught-stricken homestead. Four years have passed since his three sons apparently perished in the siege of Gallipoli, and his wife has not overcome the trauma; she’ll soon be joining them. Left with nothing, Connor leaves on horseback to visit the location of the bloodiest massacre of World War I, in order to exhume his sons’ missing remains and bury them with their mother.</p> <p>Connor approaches his goal with the mulish obstinacy of a Liam Neeson action hero. His visit is unwelcome from every direction; he reopens tribal wounds between the English and the Ottomans, and he battles prejudice and bureaucratic hurdles, even as a plot twist keeps a semblance of hope alive.</p> <p>This is a compelling idea for a movie, but it needs a surer hand behind the camera. As pretty as Andrew Lesnie’s sun-dappled cinematography is, Crowe is an amateur visual storyteller. Editing rhythms are awkward and disjointed, a curious number of close-ups seem to be filmed in front of artificial green-screens, and many of his scenes appear to be, as the saying goes, “fixed in post.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/April/406968-a93ff59a-79d6-11e4-af6e-cd6ad31dcd05.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>But the movie’s crippling flaws have more to do with tone and its sense of place than its technical ineptitude. The settings in “The Water Diviner” feel as much like Istanbul as a visit to Epcot’s Tokyo exhibition feels like visiting Japan. This is another white-man-in-a-foreign-land culture-clash experiment, and Crowe imbues Turkey with Hollywood’s shallow, hokey exoticism. The movie’s idea of local color is an old man attempting to pluck and eat a live chicken, and Crowe’s own character is a fount of stupid Anglo-American gaffes, such as mistaking a muezzin’s wail for a street barker trying to sell something.</p> <p>All of this is consistent with a crushingly simplistic film that treats everybody as a cardboard cutout spouting melodramatic trailer bytes: “For me, this place is one big grave,” “hope is a necessity where I come from,” “I measure a man by how much he loves his children,” and so on. Fuzzy battlefield flashbacks share screen time with a rote romance, risible humor and telegraphed action sequences—a crowd-pleasing mélange of genres so transparently calculated that it’s difficult to be truly moved by the results. Even in the big revelation at the film’s climax, Crowe can’t resist lathering the moment with cheap sentiment.</p> <p>The only moment in “The Water Diviner” that feels real is that wordless early scene in which Connor divines said water from the ground. The rest of the film is all wet.</p> <p><em>"The Water Diviner" opens in most theaters Friday.</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 22 Apr 2015 13:08:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesSwank Farms rolls out last dinner!<p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/swank-table-hp-2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>There’s no better day than Earth Day to salute the season ending of the Swank Table series this Sunday. The event, Prime Cuts—a beefy extravaganza featuring Chis Miracolo of S3 (Fort Lauderdale), Blake Malatesta of Delray’s 50 Ocean and Isaac Cerny of West Palm’s Pistache, among others—is sold out (but I hear there is waiting list) as all of them are, but what a grand few months it has been. </p> <p>This will be dinner number seven this season starting with 50 Eggs Down on the Farm with Clayton Miller (Khong River House) and others; Black &amp; Gold Silver Sands with Jason Pringle (db Bistro Moderne,) Jeremy Ford (Jean-Georges Miami Beach), among others; to Hot Pink Tomato, with Conor Hanlon (The Dutch, Miami) and Roy Villacrusis (Nitrogen), among others; Le Grand Aioli with Michael Reidt (Pilgrim, Miami), Paula Da Silva (3030 Ocean), and Clayton Carnes (Wellington’s The Grille), among others; the first vegetarian blow-out—Where’s The Beet?— with Market 17 and Hippocrates, among others, and the ever-popular dreamy Diner En Blanc with Nick Morfogen (32 East ) and Rick Mace (Café Boulud), among others. It was a star-studded line up of area chefs, spectacular food and wine pairings with a variety of sommeliers, and music by great bands like the Killbillies, Hughie Burns and the County Line, the Baron Sisters, Uproot Hootenanny.</p> <p>Not only were the dinners a great success, but a film about Swank Farm, and the trials of tribulations of small farmers Jodi and Darrin Swank, made it into the Palm Beach International Film Festival—and won as audience favorite.</p> <p>But no wonder.  For 13 years, we’ve loved the Swanks’ produce through our local green market or at fine restaurants or the farm’s CSA program. It’s no surprise that farm to table would come to life right where the Swanks live and work—on their own Loxahatchee Groves farm.</p> <p>Here’s to another great season, and one last Sunday dinner raising a glass to this great series of food celebrations—and to the dedicated family that makes it all happen. Secure your seats for next year’s series by visiting <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.  And tell ’em we sent you!</p>Marie SpeedWed, 22 Apr 2015 11:01:00 +0000 & ReviewsTime to Run from the Rays<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>It’s time again to Run from the Rays. This year’s third annual 5k will be held on Sunday, April 26, and is open to both runners and walkers.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/runfromtherays.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Photo by NACHLAS PHOTOGRAPHY from last year's run</em></p> <p>The 3.1-mile course starts at the Spanish River Athletic Complex (1370 Spanish River Blvd., Boca Raton), and begins at 7:15 a.m. If a shorter distance is more your cup of tea, there’s a one-mile walk option that kicks off at 8:15 a.m. Children (16 years and under) are also eligible to participate in the one-mile event.</p> <p>Registration is $32.50; $22.50 for the one-mile walk; and $17.50 for the 16-years-and-under one-miler. Note that online registration ends April 25. Registration costs include a post-race pancake breakfast and refreshments.</p> <p>Race proceeds go four local agencies: the <a href="">Caridad Center of Palm Beach County</a>, <a href="">Melanoma Research at Moffitt Cancer Center</a> (a partner of Boca Raton Regional Hospital’s Lynn Cancer Center), <a href="">Dermatology Medical Missions, Inc.</a> and the <a href="">Richard David Kann Melanoma Foundation</a>.</p> <p>For more information, contact Run from the Rays race director Fran Nachlas, SafeSun, Inc., at 561/350-5110. To sign up, <a href="">click here</a>.</p> <p>Runners and walkers can pick up their race packets at the Runner’s Edge (<em>3195 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton)</em> or at the race location. </p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 22 Apr 2015 08:15:00 +0000 to eat at a steakhouse<p><img alt="" height="36" src="/site_media/uploads/greengoddess.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>When eating out with friends and family, restaurant choice is often a compromise. For vegetarians and vegans, that means the occasional trip to a steak house. I’m mostly vegan myself, preferring to eat plant-based meals when going out. Over time, I’ve learned how to order a healthy meal even at a steak house! Read on for my Green Goddess-approved meals at these South Florida restaurants.</p> <p><img alt="" height="325" src="/site_media/uploads/April/primedelray.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Pictured: Prime in Delray</p> <p><em>Tip: You can use these guidelines to create your own healthy meal at any other steakhouse around the country. You will be surprised how easy it can be to eat at the meat-eaters paradise!</em></p> <p><strong>NEW YORK PRIME and MORTON’S</strong></p> <p>Begin with either the New York Prime chopped Italian salad without the anchovies and blue cheese, or Morton’s chopped salad minus the cheese and bacon. This will provide you with a plethora of vitamins and enzymes to boost your energy and your immune system. For the entrée, you can create your own main course of steamed garlic spinach, sautéed mushrooms (meaty and filling!) asparagus (sans the hollandaise) and a plain baked potato, drizzled with olive oil and a little bit of salt. Spinach gives you good doze of iron, asparagus helps detoxify your system, and baked potato keeps you full as it is high in fiber.</p> <p>New York Prime: <em>2350 N.W. Executive Center Drive, Boca Raton // ‎561/998-3881 ‎<strong> </strong></em><strong></strong></p> <p>Morton’s:<strong> </strong><em>5050 Town Center Circle, Boca Raton // 561/392-7724</em></p> <p><strong>ABE AND LOUIE’S</strong></p> <p>Here I would recommend the Abe &amp; Louie’s salad that features bibb lettuce, apples and pistachio nuts. I usually ask to hold the cheese and place the dressing on the side. This is one of the most interesting salads I have seen at a steak house. It’s pretty nutritious as lettuce is high in blood-purifying chlorophyll, apples are rich in fat-reducing pectin and pistachios are known to be the highest-protein and lowest-calorie nut. The Mediterranean Salad is also a great option when you substitute cheese for high-protein chickpeas. For an entrée, go with cauliflower steak, a jumbo baked sweet potato (without the brown sugar) and Brussels sprouts. Cauliflower is a great low-calorie vegetable that is high in fiber and low in starch. Sweet potatoes are rich in bloat-reducing potassium, and Brussels sprouts are a part of the cruciferous family of vegetables that help detoxify your liver. <em>2200 W. Glades Road, Boca Raton // 561/447-0024</em></p> <p><strong>PRIME in DELRAY</strong></p> <p>Prime happens to have one of my favorite vegetarian menus. Here, I like to begin with the Roasted Beets Salad (without the feta) that comes with golden Frisse lettuce, micro basil and toasted walnuts for extra Omega 3s and protein. For the main course, I recommend a plate of Wild Steak House Mushrooms, Jumbo Asparagus and an order of Roasted Sage Fingerlings. While mushrooms are full of protein and low in calories, they have a great meaty texture. Asparagus is a great detox vegetable that is rich in glutathione, a detoxifying compound that helps break down free radicals. Fingerlings are rich in fiber and balance off the meal as they happen to be the only high-calorie part of the dinner. Another alternative here is a vegetable sushi roll – a great dinner for those who are in the mood for a lighter fare<strong>. </strong><em>110 E. Atlantic Ave., Delray Beach // 561/865-5845</em><strong></strong></p> <p><strong>HOUSTON’S </strong></p> <p>You may be surprised, but Houston’s has one of the best veggie burgers I have ever tasted. It’s made with black beans and rice, a combination that makes it complete protein. I like to opt for a lettuce bun instead of bread and sub French fries for steamed broccoli. Other healthy choices included kale salad and braised cabbage. Kale, broccoli and cabbage also belong to the family of cruciferous vegetables, which – as mentioned above – helps support the largest organ in your body: your liver. To see what this delicious burger looks like, check out my <a href="">video</a> here. </p> <p><em>1900 N.W. Executive Center Circle, Boca Raton // 561/998-0550</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more from the Green Goddess, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-green-goddess/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>About Alina Z.</strong>
</em></p> <p><em>Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida,  Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at, visit Alina’s website at <a href=""></a>, or follow her on Facebook (<a href="/admin/blog/blogpost/10225/"></a>) or Twitter (<a href="">@CoutureFood</a>). The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at <a href="/"></a>.</em></p>Alina Z.Wed, 22 Apr 2015 07:57:00 +0000 & ReviewsRafina to Debut at end of April<p><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/April/rafina.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Greek cuisine doesn’t get a whole lot of love in our little corner of paradise. Here’s hoping the debut of <a href="" target="_blank">Rafina Greek Taverna</a> (<em>6877 S.W. 18th St., 561/409-3673</em>) will help change that.</p> <p>Set to open on Thursday, April 30, in Boca’s recently renovated Boardwalk at 18th Street shopping complex, Rafina promises an elegant, contemporary look with a casual atmosphere. Think sleek dining with lots of white and dark wood and panoramic water views.</p> <p>As for the food, Chef Janis Mucollaris’s menu is a lengthy journey through Greek culinary classics, plus a handful of modern variations on a Greek culinary theme. What that means on your plate are everything from dolmades, moussaka and spanikopita to empanadas filled with shredded lamb and feta, lemon-glazed “lollipop” chicken wings and sole stuffed with a mixture of spinach, feta, onions and garlic.</p> <p>The bar menu will feature a roster of craft cocktails and designer martinis, plus more than a dozen Greek wines and a longer list of wines from both Old and New World vintners.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 21 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Governor and the Medicaid Debacle<h3><img alt="" height="106" src="/site_media/uploads/medicaid.jpg" width="160"></h3> <h3>The Governor and Medicaid expansion</h3> <p>If the Florida Legislature’s annual session can seem distant and meaningless, this year the session is anything but that for Roger Kirk and Joanne Aquilina.</p> <p>Kirk is president and CEO of Bethesda Hospital in Boynton Beach. Aquilina is vice president and chief financial officer. Bethesda provides most of the charity care in southeastern Palm Beach County. Like Boca Raton Regional Hospital, Bethesda is community-based and not-for-profit. Publicly traded Tenet Healthcare Corp., owns Delray Medical Center and West Boca Medical Center.</p> <p>The big issue this year in Tallahassee—one of the biggest in recent memory—is the refusal of Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida House to accept the Senate’s plan for expanding Medicaid. Technically, the Senate’s label is Florida Health Insurance Affordability Exchange Program (FHIX), because Medicaid expansion is part of the Affordable Care Act. All Republicans must publicly condemn the health care law, even as Senate Republicans try to pull down billions through the law for FHIX.</p> <p>Numerous credible studies show that expanding Medicaid could bring coverage to roughly one million Floridians who make too much to qualify for Medicaid under current rules but not enough to buy private insurance. New to this year’s Medicaid debate is the possible end of another source of federal health care money for the state’s working poor: the Low Income Pool, or LIP.</p> <p>Kirk said Bethesda receives $4.5 million of the $2.2 billion that Florida receives from the Low Income Pool. Combined with other Medicaid-related money, he said, Bethesda could lose about $8 million if the Legislature doesn’t expand Medicaid and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ends the LIP money.</p> <p>Medicaid expansion, Kirk told me in an interview Monday, “has become a political football.” He and other hospital CEOs are frustrated because “the explanation for not expanding Medicaid is confusing. It doesn’t add up.”</p> <p>Actually, it does add up—but not in a way that says anything good about Tallahassee.</p> <p>In 2012, when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, the justices did not require states to expand Medicaid. A year later, the Florida Senate presented its first plan for Medicaid expansion by another name. The House refused. Scott briefly expressed support for expansion, but he never pushed it.</p> <p>The House remains opposed. So Scott is the key player. Despite that opposition, he could force the House to accept the Senate’s plan. Among other things, he could threaten to veto every budget item dear to House GOP leaders. The Florida Chamber of Commerce and Associated Industries of Florida have given Scott political cover by supporting FHIX.</p> <p>The sense in Tallahassee, though, is that Scott intends to run for the U.S. Senate in 2018 against incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson. Scott would run as the anti-Washington, anti-Obama candidate, even though Obama would have left the White House more than two years earlier. But Scott couldn’t use that campaign theme if Florida expanded Medicare—under whatever name—because it to would amount to acceptance of the Affordable Care Act. In a non-presidential election year, the conservative Republicans most opposed to the law have outsized importance because the turnout is low.</p> <p>Last week, as criticism of his opposition grew, Scott announced that he would sue the federal government. He claims that the potential loss of Low Income Pool money is designed to “coerce” Florida into expanding Medicaid.</p> <p>In fact, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services warned Florida a year ago—Kirk confirms this—that the state’s Low Income Pool program in its current form would be ending. Florida got an extension through this budget year —which ends June 30—only because the state agreed to an independent evaluation of a new payment plan. As the <em>Orlando Sentinel</em> reported, a federal health official recently told an Associated Industries of Florida conference, “Florida’s payment system is complicated, and far more so than the payment system in either Medicare or payment systems in other states. That complexity leads to huge variation within the state in terms of the ratio of Medicaid payment to the cost of care.”</p> <p>As testimony last week before a Senate committee revealed, however, the governor has made no contingency plans if the LIP money ends. The witness was Elizabeth Dudek, seeking Senate confirmation as secretary of the Agency for Health Care Administration. It supervises the Medicaid program in Florida.</p> <p>Under questioning from Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, the past Senate president, Dudek acknowledged that the Scott administration had no fallback plan of its own for the loss of Low Income Pool money. Indeed, Dudek said the administration’s only plan was. . .the Senate plan for expanding Medicaid—a plan the governor opposes. Not until Monday did Scott send the federal government a new plan for the Low Income Pool money.</p> <p>How weird has this debate become? Democrats on the Ethics and Elections Committee fist-bumped Gaetz as he left for a meeting of another committee after questioning Dudek. Gaetz rarely raises his voice, but he is a full-throated Republican. His questioning shows that there is bipartisan frustration with the governor over his intransigence on expanding health care coverage.</p> <p>The federal government would cover 100 percent of Florida’s costs for FHIX or any other version of Medicaid expansion for the first three years. Washington would pay 90 percent of the costs annually after that. According to the Health360 project of the Brookings Institution, states that don’t expand Medicaid will give up $37 billion in matching federal money and $14 billion in hospital reimbursement next year.</p> <p>And for those who worry about additional cost to Florida, the Brookings researchers believe that expanding Medicaid eligible for children could bring in enough revenue to pay for the expansion. The researchers wrote, “The study found that childhood Medicaid raise cumulative taxes paid, reduced government Earned Income Tax Credit transfers and increased cumulative wages among females.”</p> <p>Rather than help the state, Scott threatens yet another legal fight. Given his record in the courts—he has lost on the Affordable Care Act itself, drug-testing state employees and welfare recipients, as well as election laws and prisons—his chances are slim. Worse, a lengthy lawsuit wouldn’t help Roger Kirk and Joanne Aquilina.</p> <p>If Bethesda loses that $8 million and the state doesn’t act on Medicaid expansion, “It would severely impact our operation,” Kirk said. “We would have to reduce services and programs.” Among them: The program Bethesda uses to qualify new mothers for Medicaid. Many don’t know they are eligible. Kirk said about 80 percent of Bethesda’s free care is for obstetrics and pediatrics.</p> <p>Many hospitals would be in much worse shape. It is safe to say that Florida faces a potential health care crisis. The session ends in nine days. The House and Senate are $4 billion apart on their budgets, all because of health care. The governor is looking to his next job. Everyone expects a special session, but added time won’t help unless there’s a change in one side’s position. The change needs to come from the governor.</p> <p>Meanwhile, Bethesda and many other hospitals in Florida wait, wonder and fume.</p> <h3>Sober House update</h3> <p>More hopeful news from Tallahassee is that the House has passed legislation that would require state certification of “sober houses,” residential facilities for substance abusers who have completed treatment.</p> <p>Sober houses have popped up all over Boca Raton and Delray Beach, in some cases degrading neighborhoods of single-family homes. The legislation seeks to drive out bad operators by requiring treatment centers to send patients only to certified sober houses.</p> <p>Rep. Bill Hager, R-Boca Raton, sponsored the House version. Democrat Jeff Clemens is the Senate sponsor. He told me that he expects a full vote on the Senate version late this week. Since the bill has received only yes votes in committee, overwhelming approval seems likely.</p> <p>Assuming the governor signed the legislation, relief for cities and neighborhoods still would be months off, if it came. Real progress will come only when the federal government changes rules that classify addicts as disabled, and thus prevent any regulation of where they live.</p> <h3>Police Advisory Board</h3> <p>Ten years ago, a 23-year-old Delray Beach police officer shot 16-year-old Jerrod Miller as the youth drove a car through a school breezeway. The incident led to soul-searching among city officials, and Delray Beach formed a Policy Advisory Board as a result.</p> <p>The Jerrod Miller case was different from recent police shootings that have drawn so much attention. Miller had no driver’s license, yet an uncle lent him a car to drive to a dance. Miller drove off to avoid a police license check. But the officer, Darren Cogoni, acted irresponsibly by firing at a car that was moving away from him. Cogoni said he fired to protect other kids at the dance. In fact, the shot put all the children at risk. The city settled with Jerrod Miller’s estate for $1 million.</p> <p>In the wake of what happened in Ferguson, Mo., and other places, having a civilian conduit to the police department is a good idea. It can do its most important work before trouble happens. On tonight’s Delray Beach City Commission agenda is an item that would allow the Police Advisory Board to continue. Especially given new Chief Jeffrey Goldman’s support for community policing, the commission should keep the board.</p> <h3>Working Floridians on the uptick</h3> <p>On many occasions, Gov. Scott has expressed his wish to make Florida as business-friendly as Texas. For the moment, however, the comparison favors Florida.</p> <p>In March, according to Wells Fargo, the state added 30,600 jobs while Texas lost 25,400 jobs. Regarding that Florida number, keep in mind that the entire country added just 126,000 jobs last month.</p> <p>These reports, though, come with lots of asterisks. The drop in oil prices has hit Texas hard, as companies cut back on drilling. Florida especially has benefited from the tough winter in the Northeast and Midwest, which slowed economies in those states and sent more tourists here seeking warmer weather. The West Coast also still is feeling the effects of the long port strike, which just settled.</p> <p>Still, Florida’s year-over-year, private-sector job growth is roughly twice that of the nation as a whole. Whatever the reasons—which have much less to do with the governor’s policies than he would argue—it’s good for the state. At this rate, the number of working Floridians soon will be higher than the pre-recession record.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 21 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: April 21 to 27<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="406" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bob-dylan-prima-esposizione-italiana-del-musicista.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Bob Dylan and His Band</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $63.75-$153.75</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Inevitably, every time Bob Dylan tours South Florida, I write in my preview that it may be his last tour. I’m done providing this qualifier. It’s perhaps more accurate to suggest that Dylan is immortal; his songs certainly are. The latest tour of the 73-year-old legend sees him continuing to explore his gravelly, bluesy recent albums, drawing heavily from 2012’s “Tempest,” his best work in years, and accompanied by a five-piece band of consummate professionals happy to play second fiddle to Dylan’s guitar, harmonica and piano. Expect to hear a few token greatest-hits staples, but don’t be surprised if they don’t sound at all like the arrangements you’re used to: “Blowin’ in the Wind” and “Tangled Up in Blue” have, like Dylan, evolved, whether die-hard folkies like it or not. Interestingly enough, he’ll play just one cut from his latest, critically acclaimed standards album, “Shadows in the Night.”</p> <p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="291" src="/site_media/uploads/April/boca-museum-900x535.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening day of “Helena Rubinstein: Beauty is Power”</strong></p> <p>Where: Boca Raton Museum of Art, 501 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $10–$12, free for students, members and children</p> <p>Contact: 561/392-2500, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Long before there was Oprah, there was Helena Rubinstein, purportedly the first female billionaire in the United States. Born Chaja Rubinstein in working-class Poland in 1870, she emigrated to Australia penniless and with little English in 1902. Thanks in part to the lanolin secreted by the 75 million sheep of Western Victoria, she launched an eponymous cosmetics brand that went on to sweep four continents. A social climber and a quick-witted quipster—one of Rubinstein’s famous mantras was that “there are no ugly women, only lazy ones”—this self-made marketing guru employed whatever tactics she could, including pseudoscience, to prescribe beauty on the women she “diagnosed.” Along the way, Rubinstein became a fervent art collector, and it’s this lesser-known facet of her illustrious career that “Beauty is Power” will explore. Organized by the Jewish Museum in New York, the exhibition showcases the works that inspired her brand, her taste and her personality, from Miro and Chagall to Picasso, Man Ray and Warhol. The 200-plus pieces in “Beauty is Power” also include images of Rubinstein’s homes and salons and samples of her couture and jewelry.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="219" src="/site_media/uploads/April/rachel1.jpeg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: “Voices of Courage”</strong></p> <p>Where: Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, 201 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 6 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $35</p> <p>Contact: 561/265-3797, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Sex-trafficking abolitionist Rachel Lloyd knows of what she speaks. As she recounts in her disturbing memoir “Girls Like Us,” she was once one of those girls, turning her first trick at 17 and surviving murder attempts by pimps, rape on the streets, and a handful of suicide attempts. By the late ‘90s she was free, but this resilient survivor has managed to inspire others through her perseverance, becoming an advocate against sex trafficking and forming a nonprofit, the Girls Educational and Mentoring Services, to combat it. Lloyd will share her story as the keynote speaker of this community discussion on human trafficking, presented as a fundraiser for Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse. Cocktails and refreshments begin at 6 p.m., and there will be a Q&amp;A following Lloyd’s presentation. All proceeds will benefit AVDA.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/24days.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “24 Days”</strong></p> <p>Where: Living Room Theaters at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: Show times pending</p> <p>Cost: $6.50-$9.50</p> <p>Contact: 561/549-2600, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>They’re no escaping the prescient dread of “24 Days,” a downbeat and enraging police procedural based on the real-life kidnapping of a young Jewish man, Ilan Halimi, from his suburban Parisian home in 2006. The title refers to his period of captivity, during which time authorities worked around the clock to secure his release from a small band of terrorists with Islamic ties. Director Alexandre Arcady’s sobering thriller transitions between Ilan’s panicked family, the frustrated police force and the increasingly frayed kidnappers, as an initially straightforward hostage situation balloons into a <em>cause celebre</em>. The movie feels ripped from today’s headlines, arriving in theaters just a few months after the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack. A film about a nine-year-old, isolated case of a religiously motivated horror in the heart of France resonates with chilling, prophetic unease, while also astutely addressing issues like police ineptitude and bystander apathy. Don’t miss this one, if you can stomach it.</p> <p><img alt="" height="271" src="/site_media/uploads/April/boulevard-robin-williams-tribeca.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Colony Theater, 1040 Lincoln Road, Miami Beach</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25-$75</p> <p>Contact: 877/766-8156, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This nationwide trendsetter for LGBT-themed festivals nationwide enters its 17<sup>th</sup> year boasting one of its strongest lineups ever—some 60 films from around the globe, including features, documentaries and shorts that will make their world, U.S. and/or regional premieres. The festival opens Friday with “Boulevard,” one of the final star vehicles for the late Robin Williams, as a man in a loveless hetero marriage who finds his sexual awakening in the form of a young hustler; the $75 ticket gets you into a fully catered after-party at nearby Skydeck on Lincoln Road. Other important films premiering at this festival include “The New Girlfriend,” the latest from French provocateur Francois Ozon (6 p.m. April 29) and closing-night film “Seeking Dolly Parton,” an American dramedy about a lesbian couple seeking a sperm donation from an uncomfortable source (8 p.m. May 2). For a complete schedule of films, parties and participating theaters, visit the festival’s website.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="294" src="/site_media/uploads/April/c700x420.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “Mythbusters Unleashed”</strong></p> <p>Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $35-$110</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-7469, <a href="" target="_blank">kravis</a>.org</p> <p>Though it can occasionally result in ammonium nitrate experiments gone dangerously awry, the job of Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage is a seemingly fun one: They get to blow stuff up and crash vehicles for a living, and get paid by the Discovery Channel to do it on national television. Of course, it’s deeper than that: The hosts of “MythBusters” use scientific methods to either confirm or “bust” cultural myths many of have accepted as truth—like “shooting fish in a barrel”—in a continuous quest that has lasted for more than 10 years of ratings gold. From hypnosis and “cold feet” to whether cell phones interfere with plane instruments, Savage and Hyneman have left few sacred cows un-busted, and they’ll share some of their quirky science expertise at this all-new stage show, which combines live experiments with audience participation and behind-the-scenes stories.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="275" src="/site_media/uploads/April/benson-george.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Generations concert with George Benson</strong></p> <p>Where: Seminole Casino Coconut Creek, 5550 N.W. 40<sup>th</sup> St.</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $75-$250</p> <p>Contact: 800/653-8000, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>It’s only fitting that the legendary jazz guitarist George Benson’s latest album, 2013’s “Inspirations,” is a tribute to Nat King Cole. That’s because Cole’s music is the ideal soundtrack for this weekend’s fourth annual Generations concert, whose proceeds benefit Nat King Cole Generation Hope, the music-education nonprofit founded by Cole’s twin daughters, Timolin and Casey. Benson, a 10-time Grammy winner whose eclectic musicality encompasses jazz, pop, R&amp;B and scat singing, will provide the timeless tunes for this special concert. The $250 VIP ticket includes premiere seating, an open bar, a private meet-and-greet and a post-dessert reception.</p> <p>SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="306" src="/site_media/uploads/April/rain-sgt-pepper.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Rain: A Tribute to the Beatles</strong></p> <p>Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $20-$100</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-7469, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The Beatles tribute-band community remains divided over the best way to honor the Fab Four’s legacy: Just be yourselves but play the Beatles music as accurately as possible, or impersonate John, Paul, George and Ringo using period costumes and instruments? Rain definitely takes the latter approach, but with enough serious musical chops and a deep enough song catalog to impress the technical purists in the former camp. The band offers a chronological time warp of the Beatles’ progression, from the boy band pop of their “Ed Sullivan” breakthrough to John Lennon’s still-unheeded lament to “Give Peace a Chance.” In between, these immaculate impressionists play upwards of 30 songs over two hours of multimedia special effects, with lesser-played tunes like “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” and “The End” alongside “Hey Jude” and “All You Need is Love.”</p>John ThomasonMon, 20 Apr 2015 18:10:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadUpcoming EventsMorning Miracles<p><img alt="" height="224" src="/site_media/uploads/image-health.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>This morning a dream came true.</p> <p>I was sitting under a white tent in the parking lot of the Caridad Center, the air thick with what promised to be rain later on, the puffy blue clouds scudding past the cupola on the clinic.</p> <p>Today marked the day that that building would begin its expansion—the groundbreaking of a new Caridad clinic addition—something those of us on the board or who work or volunteer at Caridad have been talking about for 15 years.</p> <p>The building we were facing was showing a little age; it was built in 1997 a few years after the original double wide trailer was placed at the corner of Boynton Beach Boulevard and 441 to provide free health care for Palm Beach County’s working poor.</p> <p>That small medical trailer was the vision of two Hagan Ranch Elementary School teachers—Connie Berry and Caridad Asensio—who saw first hand the plight of impoverished migrant schoolchildren in their classes. That vision has grown over the years to include a 400-person volunteer medical staff and more than 25,000 patient visits annually.</p> <p>The day the present building opened it was already too small; the expansion by 11,000 square feet will allow Caridad to accommodate more people in both the dental and medical practices, and the old vision van will be retired, allowing eye care patients to be seen inside.</p> <p>This morning as we started the program, I watched Luis Torres, a longtime volunteer, recite the Caridad prayer. Connie Berry thanked everyone, and mentioned our guardian angel, Caridad Asensio, who died in 2011, and was undoubtedly there in spirit. I looked at the faces of longtime board members, and clinic staff, and ageing doctors, all of who work to make the miracles happen there every week. Giving eyesight to a child, helping a cancer stricken mother get surgery. Paying for a funeral or a month’s rent, or helping children with homework—all done with compassion, with generosity, with the only motivation to reach out and help someone else. That’s how we’ve raised $3.8 million of the $5 million we need to finish the addition, through everyday miracles that add up to building something that is changing—and saving—lives.</p> <p>I could see Connie fighting back the tears as she thanked us. I wondered if Caridad was watching, if she was somehow in the breeze out here on the edge of the farmland, urging us forward. I wondered where the next million dollars would come from and I swear I could hear her whispering not to worry, and that it would come.</p> <p>And it will. That’s how Caridad operates. Its business is doing good, and the miracles just keep on coming. Today was one of them.</p> <p><em>If you would like to donate to Caridad’s building expansion, please visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Marie SpeedMon, 20 Apr 2015 14:00:00 +0000 Bites: Veggies and Pizza<p>If you love shopping for the gloriously fresh fruits and vegetables at <a href="" target="_blank">Bedner’s Market</a> but hate the long, enervating drive out to West Boynton, you’re in luck. Or at least you will be, come November.</p> <p><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bedners.png" width="490"></p> <p>That’s when the family-owned u-pick farm and market plans to open a satellite market in downtown Delray that will feature all the fresh produce trucked in from the Boynton parent, as well as a small roster of sandwiches, salads and other munchies so you can keep up your energy for more shopping and dealing with the impossible downtown Delray traffic.</p> <p>You can never be too rich or too thin or—apparently—have too many pizza joints. Say hello to <a href="" target="_blank">Jet’s Pizza</a> (<em>8903 Glades Road, Boca Raton, 561/852-5700</em>), the second South Florida spot for the Michigan-based chain, which sports some 300 pizzerias in 18 states. Pies come thin crust, regular and deep dish, with the option to customize your crust with anything from poppy seeds to romano cheese. Also on the menu are various subs and a handful of salads. Look for more Jets to fly into SoFla, with outlets coming to Coral Springs, Pompano Beach and Royal Palm Beach.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 20 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsOn the Job and Off the Hook<p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/April/offthehook.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Pictured: Off the Hook</em></p> <p>Back from Vegas and back on the blog. . .</p> <p>As a POF (Person of Food) it was a pretty interesting trip. I hadn’t been to Las Vegas since the beginning of its effort in the 1990s to become a dining destination as well as a gambling mecca, so I was curious to see whether the restaurants there were really as good as many people say. In a word (or three): Yes, they are.</p> <p>It was a little disconcerting to find these elegant, expensive upscale hotel eateries cheek-by-jowl with the raucous, garish casino floor -- but once inside, the gambling madness seemed far away, and the food was as good as anything you could get in Miami or New York or San Francisco or any other food-centric town.</p> <p><em>Just a few highlights. . .</em></p> <p>Killer blue corn lobster tacos with habanero-fennel relish and spicy Yucatan chicken skewers with peanut-smoked chili barbecue sauce at <a href="" target="_blank">Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill</a>. House-made bowtie pasta dyed a verdant green with fresh mint, served with English peas, bits of pancetta and Pecorino Romano, plus a slice of warm panetone with tangerine segments and rum gelato at Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich’s <a href="" target="_blank">B&amp;B Ristorante</a>. And a terrific trio of tastes featuring osetra caviar, summery lobster-avocado salad, gorgeously bronzed whole roasted duck with subtle five-spice sauce, and ethereal lemon-raspberry souffle at <a href="" target="_blank">Le Cirque.</a></p> <p>Las Vegas is a crazy town and you have to put up with the incessant crowds and noise and flashing lights, but you can eat damn well there.</p> <p><em>Now, to more local news. . .</em></p> <p>It seems odd that a state bordered on three sides by water would have far more steakhouses than restaurants specializing in seafood. So word of a new fish joint opening in Boca is certainly good news.</p> <p>That joint would be <a href="" target="_blank">Off the Hook</a> (<em>1956 N.E. Fifth Ave.,561/609-2915</em>), a slick-looking little spot in the Fifth Avenue Shops complex. Inside it’s all bright and cheery reds, whites and blues with a very contemporary seafaring feel. The long, narrow space features a boat-shaped bar, counter set with red and chrome hightop chairs, blond wood tables and buoys and fake fish decorating the walls.</p> <p>The menu offers lots of familiar, comforting piscine fare, from conch fritters with Cajun aioli and fried Ipswich clams to crab and shrimp-stuffed lemon sole and a classic Long Island clambake, plus selections from the raw bar. For non-fin fans there’s a cola-glazed pork tenderloin, oven-roasted chicken breast and Angus burger.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 17 Apr 2015 14:37:00 +0000 & ReviewsTravel &#39;Bling&#39; Shines at Cornell Museum<p><img alt="" height="301" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling4.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The spirit of Andy Warhol currently hangs, smirking and sardonic and brilliant, over the galleries of the Cornell Museum of Art. The museum’s “Bling: Art That Shines,” a group show featuring 16 contemporary artists who employ elements such as crystals, diamond dust and glitter to create sparkling paintings, sculptures and installations, isn’t designed with New York Pop Art pioneer in mind. But it just so happens that many of the artists deploy their sparkling, bejeweled creations for the same ironic, pop-cultural distance that propelled Warhol to stardom.</p> <p><img alt="" height="507" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling2.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Consumer products are recreated like talismanic shrines of eye-popping color and light, from Alberto Murillo’s “Chanel”—a painted image of the titular perfume bottle, created from sand-blasted acrylic and UV resin—to Jonathan Stein’s Swarovski crystal-studded sculptures of Haribo Gummy Bears and Starbucks coffee cups, which effectively turn disposable junk-food commodities into priceless centerpieces. You don’t know whether to laugh, cry or simply be dazzled; Warhol’s worship at the altar of Campbell’s and Brillo has nothing on this.</p> <p><img alt="" height="500" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>“Bling” even has its own repurposed image of Marilyn Monroe, whose face, thanks to Warhol and many others, has become both subject and object, sign and signifier. Russell Young’s “Marilyn Portrait” features diamond dust (diamonds <em>are</em> a girl’s best friend, after all) over her fading sepia-toned visage, creating a sense of false luster over a face that seems to be receding into oblivion. Even Palm Beach collage artist Bruce Helander, not known as a Pop artist, borrows a bit from the Warhol playbook with “Triple Elvis,” a pulpy appropriation of three gun-slinging Presleys.</p> <p><img alt="" height="199" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling3.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>You could argue that this is a case of the old becoming new again, a tendency that appears elsewhere in the exhibition, too: Camomile Hixon revives the flatness of the post-expressionists with “Gold Horizon” and mid-century text art with works like “Dream” and “Yes.” But a crucial element separates these artists from the 20<sup>th</sup> century modernists, beyond the sparkle of their media: humor. The shiny sheens of these twinkly canvases and sculptures are accompanied in most cases with a sense of humor that is sometimes sly and cheeky and other times in your face, and this exhibition is a fine antidote against the self-seriousness of earlier generations.</p> <p><img alt="" height="1065" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling7.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Ashley Longshore is a great example of this. She creates large-scale portraits that satirize the excesses of celebrity by being excessive themselves. “Subtleties Are Not Her Specialty” is the portrait of a star whose face is surrounded by plumes of florid bling, a monument of bejeweled vanity. This desire to be admired takes an even more extreme direction in “Audrey in Slipper Orchid Headdress,” in which the celebrity wears a headpiece so towering that it’s attracted birds—and which would put Carmen Miranda and Isabella Blow to shame.</p> <p>Then there’s “Designer Ideal Woman,” a multicolored series of sparkling women’s torsos created with automotive paint, resin and glitter by the feminist artist Allie Pohl—each of them a witty commentary on the impossible dimensions of Barbie dolls. It’s exactly the sort of paradigm-challenging work that would have elevated the Norton Musem’s vapid hagiography of Barbie last summer.</p> <p><img alt="" height="511" src="/site_media/uploads/April/bling51.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The works of Shonagh Adelman likewise marry feminism and humor, with even more provocation. Created entirely from pieces of 4mm colored glass and acrylic crystals, “Bear Antoinette” subverts a royal portrait by depicting a queen in a flowing ballroom dress but with the head of a teddy bear. Adelman’s “Lily La Tigresse” features a pregnant tiger humanoid whose eyes slowly dart right and left, following museumgoers around the gallery; and her “Yellow Grrrls” ups the creepy-funny factor even more by having the titular women blink it us and lasciviously lick their lips.</p> <p>The result of all this is a lot of painstaking work, with the crystals and diamonds arranged with pointillistic precision, all for, in some cases, a joke. Which brings us back to Stein’s gummy bears and Starbucks cups, which only work because of the artist’s assurance that every tiny crystal is arranged to perfectly recreate a ubiquitous brand. The power of this exhibition, then, is threefold: We marvel at the craftsmanship, stare hypnotically at the choice of sparkly media, and laugh at the intended result. Warhol, for all his artistic road-paving, didn’t do <em>that</em> much.</p> <p><em>“Bling: Art That Shines” runs through July 5 at Cornell Museum of Art, 51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach. Admission costs $5. For information, call 561/243-7922 or visit</em></p>John ThomasonFri, 17 Apr 2015 13:33:40 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachFashion Foward: New H&amp;M Store and Lilly for Target Debuts<p><img alt="" height="245" src="" width="490"></p> <p><strong>Lilly for Target</strong></p> <p>Palm Beach fashion is taking over Target. The new Lilly Pulitzer collaboration hits stores on April 19. The collection will feature the brand’s signature resort prints in clothing, shoes, accessories, home décor and more. For more details, check out our blog on <a href="/blog/2015/01/07/lilly-pulitzer-for-target" target="_blank">Lilly's Target collection</a>.</p> <p><strong>Find Your Perfect Fit </strong></p> <p>Gte a free consultation with a swim fit \specialist at Tommy Bahama in Town Center at Boca Raton on April 18, from 12 to 3 p.m. These experts will help you find the perfect swimsuit to flatter your figure. Then receive a limited-edition beach bag with any swimwear purchase during the event.</p> <p><strong>New H&amp;M Store</strong></p> <p>Another H&amp;M store is coming to Palm Beach County. This summer the retailer will open a new outlert in the Boynton Beach Mall. This location will be the fourth store in the area.</p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 17 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsStaff Picks: wine and cheese, donuts and wildflowers<p><strong>Cheese Culture</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="383" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cheeseculture.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>“I’m a sucker for a good cheese and charcuterie plate – especially if it comes with a nice glass of wine. At Cheese Culture, the staff takes it a step further by customizing your experience based on your alcohol of choice. Pick your wine or beer, and your expert server will select the best cheese pairing (or pairings) for you.”</p> <p>813 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>Rhino Doughnuts &amp; Coffee</strong></p> <p><em><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/rhino.jpg" width="490"></em></p> <p><em>Picked by Rebecca Valenza, National Account Manager</em></p> <p><strong>“</strong>If you're a donut fan you have to check out Rhino Donuts &amp; Coffee in Mizner ~ fabulous selection of sweet decadence!”</p> <p>126 N.E. Second St., Boca Raton // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>Meadow Beauty</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="311" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/meadowbeauty.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“The only place I know to get native wildflowers—as well as native Florida plants and bushes. Give your yard back to its place of origin and step away from Home Depot. And prepare yourself for a butterfly paradise. Tell Carl and Donna I sent you. Open to the public on Saturday mornings until noon.”</p> <p>5782 Ranches Road, Lake Worth // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 17 Apr 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Effect<p><img alt="" height="377" src="/site_media/uploads/April/grandviewgreenhouse.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>High school students in the Innovation Program at Boca Raton’s <a href="">Grandview Preparatory School</a> are doing everything possible to ensure that their 2015 “passion project” is more than just a wing and a prayer. To that end, students have been busy designing and constructing a special greenhouse that will house and rehabilitate several local butterfly species currently on the endangered list.</p> <p>Among the species, all native to Florida, that will find a new home: the Atala hairstreak butterfly (pictured), some newly endangered monarch butterflies and a number of Heliconian butterflies. Host plants specific to each species will be included in the greenhouse.</p> <p><img alt="" height="417" src="/site_media/uploads/April/atala.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Students already have inspired the Grandview family, but they hope to continue raising awareness throughout the Boca community. A GoFundMe campaign, which sought to raise money for the materials needed to build the greenhouse, drew more than $6,000 in less than six days. As part of the campaign, students <a href="">wrote, recorded and produced a video</a> about the greenhouse.</p> <p>Students have spent time on weekends and after school setting the foundation for the structure.  Jeffrey Adkins, from Adkins Orchids Inc., has helped to guide students during the process, teaching them a variety of skills along the way: clearing and leveling land, wielding an ax and a sledge hammer, framing a building and pouring cement.</p> <p>It’s good to know Boca kids aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty for a worthy cause.</p> <p><em>Disclosure: Grandview Preparatory School is a sponsor of my personal business, All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor.</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><a href="/blog/tag/boca-mom-talk/" target="_blank">For more from Boca Mom Talk, click here.</a></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em><strong></strong>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href="" target="_blank"></a><strong>, </strong>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. <strong>Modern Boca Mom</strong> features events for both mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersThu, 16 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 open here, there and everywhere—and other local updates<h3> </h3> <h3><img alt="" height="119" src="/site_media/uploads/help.jpg" width="160"></h3> <h3>New super issues</h3> <p>Never have so many key leadership positions in Palm Beach County been set to turn over in such a short time. The next turnover begins today.</p> <p>I wrote recently that the Palm Beach County Commission next month will choose a successor to County Administrator Bob Weisman, who’s had the job since 1991. Trustees at Palm Beach State College are debating a successor to President Dennis Gallon, who’s retiring in June after 18 years. Florida Atlantic University President John Kelly started work just 13 months ago.</p> <p>The county also will be getting a new school superintendent. Wayne Gent is resigning after three years, and St. Lucie County quickly made him their new schools chief. After going inside to hire Gent and before him Art Johnson—the Boca Raton resident and former principal at Spanish River High School—the school board will hire someone from outside the district.</p> <p>Most likely, it will be Robert Avossa, superintendent of Fulton County (Ga.) Schools for the last four years. He was the top choice when the school board cut the list of finalists to four. One dropped out.</p> <p>Among the three whom the board will interview today, Avossa is the only current superintendent. He also is the only one not working in Florida. The other finalists are Desmond Blackburn, chief of school performance and accountability for the Broward County School District, and Jesus Jara, deputy superintendent in Orange County.</p> <p>Knowledge of Florida’s education system and Florida’s education politics is essential for any superintendent. Avossa, though, worked in Florida—and then North Carolina—before moving to Georgia. And if board members review Avossa’s recent record, they will find that the issues in Georgia are the issues in Florida.</p> <p>In Palm Beach County, as in so many parts of Florida, students, parents and teachers are complaining about the annual, state-imposed testing gauntlet. At least one school board voted to opt out of state-required tests before rescinding the decision.</p> <p>In January, Avossa sent a letter to the Georgia Legislature in which he criticized the emphasis on standardized tests. “Teachers are spending more time proving they’re doing their jobs than being allowed to do them, and students are spending more time proving they can pass a standardized test than being given time to truly master the content,” Avossa vented. “I believe students need to be tested and educators need to be held accountable, but our heavy reliance on testing leaves little room for teachers to plan, educate and improve outcomes for students.” A month after Avossa’s letter, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal named Avossa to a committee that is studying education in the state and will issue recommendations.</p> <p>Like Art Johnson, Avossa believes that one way to help underperforming schools is to give them better teachers. In Florida, that means striking deals with the teachers union to raise pay for those who work in schools where students have less parental support. In Fulton County, according to news reports, Avossa raised money to offer bonuses of $20,000 for teachers who would transfer to schools that had been identified as “failing.”</p> <p>Last October, according to the <em>Atlanta Journal-Constitution</em>, the board unanimously extended Avossa’s contract for a year. It was the second such extension, taking Avossa’s contract through 2017. Under state law, contracts for Georgia school superintendents can’t last more than three years. The board president raved that Avossa “has infused new energy and focus into our district.” The board was “extremely impressed with the results we’re seeing.”</p> <p>So if there’s a caution about Avossa, it’s why he wants to leave. Avossa makes $275,000 in base salary, but his benefits package pushes his total compensation to almost $345,000. In addition, he gets a $500,000 life insurance policy and a 401(k) contribution equal to 10 percent of his base salary. Palm Beach County wants to raise the superintendent’s pay—Gent made $236,000 in base salary—but does the board want to pay that much, since teachers barely have had raises in the last few years?</p> <p>Also, Avossa would owe Fulton County $50,000 for breaking his contract. Palm Beach board members must ask who would pay that. If Avossa says he would, the next issue is why he’d be willing to do that. The challenge of moving to a district that has twice as many students? Getting back to Florida? Both? Something else?</p> <p>The choice matters for the whole county, of course, but it especially matters for Boca Raton. The city uses its schools and their ‘A’ ratings—however controversial those ratings are —to recruit companies. The Legislature allow for-profit charter school companies to cherry-pick students and starves traditional public schools of money for construction and maintenance. The county is depending on the school board to get this choice right.</p> <h3>The disappearing easement                                </h3> <p>I wrote last week about the controversy over how an easement for the Atlantic Crossing project in Delray Beach disappeared from the second site plan, even though the plat filed with the county shows the easement. It’s called Atlantic Court, and it would provide secondary access to the project from Federal Highway. The main access point will be Northeast Seventh Avenue.</p> <p>If the easement is gone, the question is what the city got in return for giving it up. After researching this issue, I can’t find evidence that the city gave up the easement after a clear public vote. The developers contend that when the city commission approved a new site plan in January 2014, the city gave up the easement. If so, however, I can’t see that the city got anything for doing so.</p> <p>Nothing in the material provided for that meeting speaks specifically to the potential loss of the easement. Further complicating matters, Delray Beach had a different city manager and—more important—a different city attorney in January 2014.</p> <p>The upshot is that the Atlantic Crossing site plan doesn’t match the Atlantic Crossing plat. Problem. The developers seek to fix that at today’s meeting of the Planning and Zoning Board. They want a recommendation to approve the new plat that lacks the easement. The developers claim that keeping the easement would hurt traffic flow, not help it.</p> <p>Atlantic Court, though, was on the first site plan for a reason. Delray Beach already gave up Seventh Avenue and public alleyways for Atlantic Court. Commissioner Shelly Petrolia argues that, based on her look at the record, the city got Atlantic Court for giving up the alleyways.</p> <p>The developers have the right to ask for the plat change, but they can’t change the perception that Delray Beach got snookered on Atlantic Court. The developers would help themselves if, one way or another, they change that perception.</p> <h3>P&amp;Z replacement</h3> <p>As the Planning and Zoning Board debates Atlantic Crossing on Monday, the city will interview 11 candidates to succeed Dana Little as director of Planning and Zoning.</p> <p>Little resigned in February after guiding the new Land Development Regulations for the Central Business District from drafting to city commission approval, first as a Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council staffer and then as a city employee. The job is one of the most important in Delray, since all development projects go through the department. As Mayor Cary Glickstein says, “the ‘here’ is so important to these projects.” He means that what might work well in one place doesn’t work in another. Example: Atlantic Crossing, which critics believe is too big for its two square blocks.</p> <p>A committee will interview the Planning and Zoning candidates. City Manager Don Cooper will make the final decision.</p> <p> Boca pension vote notes</p> <p> At Tuesday night’s meeting, the Boca Raton City Council approved police and fire contracts that start the city toward public safety pension reform.</p> <p>The city did get $93 million in projected fire-police pension contributions over 30 years. One of Boca’s priorities in negotiations was that the city should be contributing no more than 18 percent of fire and police payroll toward pensions. The current level is about 31 percent. According to financial projections, the new contracts won’t get the city to 18 percent until 2017.</p> <p>New council member Jeremy Rodgers voted against the contracts. In voting for them, Mayor Susan Haynie and council members Mike Mullaugh, Scott Singer and Robert Weinroth praised the contracts as progress. They’re right. But there’s much margin for error in such long-range projections. Though the city and the unions get credit for compromise, don’t expect it to be the last pension compromise Boca Raton needs.</p> <h3>Medicare compromise</h3> <p>Recently, I wrote about a rare example of congressional bipartisanship on a major issue: payment rates for Medicare providers. This is an even bigger issue in South Florida; Medicare is a big part of hospital revenue.</p> <p>When I wrote, the House had overwhelmingly passed the legislation after John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi—yes, those two—worked out a compromise. The deal came, though, as Congress was leaving for the Easter/Passover recess. The Senate had not acted.</p> <p>On Tuesday, the Senate passed the legislation, just in time to avoid cuts in the next round of provider payments. The vote was 92-8. One of those voting no was Florida’s Marco Rubio, who must believe that running for president means opposing anything the White House supports.</p> <h3>Inspector General update </h3> <p>On Wednesday, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Catherine Brunson rejected a request for rehearing by the cities suing over the Office of Inspector General. Last month, Brunson ruled against their cities in their challenge of the system for financing the office.</p> <p>Delray Beach has dropped out of the lawsuit. Boca Raton remains a plaintiff. The remaining 13 cities now much decide whether to appeal. If Boca Raton intends to continue opposing something voters supported so strongly five years ago, the council should hold a formal vote and try to explain why the city should stay in the lawsuit. Or the council could hold a formal vote and make the better decision: to withdraw from the lawsuit.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 16 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityFive Musicals Coming Our Way<p>It’s customary for theater companies to wait until at least May, if not the summer, to announce their slate of productions for the following season. But a handful of South Florida companies and tour facilitators have already announced their selections for the next cultural year—and it just so happens that most of them are musicals.</p> <p>We’ll preview our most anticipated plays over the summer, but for now, mark your calendars for these five don’t-miss musicals of the 2015-2016 theater season.</p> <p><img alt="" height="300" src="/site_media/uploads/April/1.167806.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>5. Once,</strong> Oct. 6-18, 2015, at <a href="" target="_blank">Broward Center</a></p> <p>This adaptation of the Irish film “Once,” about two people who fall in love while pursuing a dream of making music together, went on to win Best Musical at the 2012 Tonys. Its creators built additional tunes and a theatrical structure around the terrific songs originally written by the movie’s actors, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova of The Swell Season.</p> <p><strong>4. Billy Elliot: The Musical,</strong> Dec. 1-20, 2015, at <a href="" target="_blank">Maltz Jupiter Theatre</a></p> <p>A motherless child who eschews boxing for ballet, breaking with tradition while coal miners in Northeastern England likewise challenge the status quo by striking in County Durham. An inspirational story and a socially conscious pulse will hopefully carry the South Florida regional theater premiere of this award-winning musical, with tunes by Elton John.</p> <p><img alt="" height="264" src="/site_media/uploads/April/toxic_avenger_news.jpg" width="400"> </p> <p><strong>3. The Toxic Avenger,</strong> Oct. 14-Nov. 8, 2015, at <a href="" target="_blank">Actors’ Playhouse</a></p> <p>This offbeat rock musical takes its inspiration from an unlikely source: the ultraviolent 1984 B-movie “The Toxic Avenger,” about a bullied janitor who falls into a drum of toxic waste and becomes a disfigured, mop-wielding superhero. The only thing this demented franchise has been lacking is singing and dancing—until now.</p> <p><strong>2. Heathers: The Musical,</strong> June 9-26, 2016, at <a href="" target="_blank">Slow Burn Theatre Company</a></p> <p>The creators of “Legally Blonde: The Musical” and “Reefer Madness” collaborated on this 2014 adaptation of “Heathers,” the ahead-of-its-time cult satire about the dangers of high school cliques. A cast of nearly 20—playing parts such as “Young Republicanette” and “Beleaguered Geek”—makes “Heathers” one of Slow Burn’s most ambitious productions to date.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/April/video-minchin-matilda-musical-articlelarge.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>1. Matilda,</strong> March 1-6, 2016, at <a href="" target="_blank">Kravis Center</a></p> <p>Contrary to common perception, there are still musicals being produced that aren’t based on movies. Matilda owes its origins to the Roald Dahl novel about a titular, imaginative 5-year-old who changes the lives of those around her while overcoming obstacles. The controversial humorist Tim Minchin reined himself in to provide the music and lyrics, and in 2012, the show went on to break the records for most Olivier Awards won in its native England.</p>John ThomasonWed, 15 Apr 2015 09:28:00 +0000 & EventsTheatreUpcoming EventsNew Xtend Barre in Boca<p><strong><img alt="" height="618" src="/site_media/uploads/April/barre2.jpg" width="400"></strong></p> <p><strong>Xtend Barre</strong>, a fitness approach that uses a traditional ballet barre as the foundation for a full-body workout, is opening a 3,200-square-foot flagship facility in Boca Raton on Friday, May 1. The state-of-the-art facility (21200 St. Andrews Blvd, Suite 11) will feature two studio spaces and the brand’s new design and look. Andrea Rogers, Xtend Barre’s founder and creator (and a Boca resident), will be among the instructors teaching classes at the new facility.</p> <p>The classic 55-minute Xtend Barre class blends elements of dance, ballet and Pilates, for a full-body and high-energy workout that strengthens, lengthens and chisels the body, according to the company’s <a href="">website</a>.</p> <p>Xtend Barre’s Boca Raton facility will offer more than 70 classes each week. Classes include the classic Xtend Barre and variations, such as: Circuit 7, which has a boot-camp, high-intensity feel; Xtend Suspend, incorporating suspension training; Xtend Yoga Fusion, integrating yoga for a touch of Zen; and Roll &amp; Release, featuring self-massage and circulation-boosting with a roller.</p> <p>Xtend Barre has become an international workout sensation, with more than 170 studios worldwide. Among the fitness brand’s celebrity fans: Diane Kruger, Jessica Hart and Drew Barrymore. This year, the fast-growing company, with a network of 50 franchisees, is expanding in London and Los Angeles, according to a media release.</p> <p>For more information on the Boca Raton studio opening, call 561/948-0820 or visit the website.</p> <p> </p>Lisette HiltonWed, 15 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyTown NewsPension deal may fall short, the red light camera demise &amp; other items of note<h3><img alt="" height="298" src="/site_media/uploads/fl-boca-public-safety-contract-settled-20141230.jpg" width="450"></h3> <h3>Pension vote imminent</h3> <p>At tonight’s meeting, the Boca Raton City Council probably will approve police and fire contracts that will bring pension savings, but reform shouldn’t stop there.</p> <p>Last week, the Fraternal Order of Police Local 35 ratified its contract. A union representative wouldn’t tell me the vote total, just that “a majority” voted for ratification. Since the International Association of Firefighters Local 1560 already had ratified its contract, City Manager Leif Ahnell put council approval of the contracts on the agenda for tonight.</p> <p>Council members Mike Mullaugh and Robert Weinroth told me that they will vote to approve. “The outline looks good,” Mullaugh said. “The trend line is down,” meaning that the city will realize savings from changes to the police and fire pension plan. A report for the city’s fire/police pension board projects the savings at $6.3 million over the three years of the contracts, which would be retroactive to Oct. 1—the start of the city’s budget year. The city declared impasse with the unions, which led to the delay in reaching the deals.</p> <p>Weinroth said the deals amount to “very good progress” in stabilizing Boca Raton’s long-term finances. If public safety pension programs became unsustainable, the city might have to raise taxes or cut services to keep up with the city’s share. The last two reports on city pension programs from the LeRoy Collins Institute at Florida State University rated Boca’s police-fire program ‘D’ in terms of financial stability.</p> <p>As I have written, however, the firefighters union touted $100 million in pension savings over 30 years when the deals were struck in late December. The projection from the pension board’s actuary is about $93 million in savings over those three decades. Weinroth acknowledged that the city isn’t getting “the magic number,” but said that neither $100 million nor $93 million “may be the number we see in 30 years.” The deals, he said, represent a move “toward sustainability.”</p> <p>Any such deal involves compromise, but on some key points the city seems to have settled for less than it could have. Here are some notable parts of the deals:</p> <p>       -- Current police officers still will be able to use as many 300 hours of overtime toward calculating their pension benefits. Ideally, there would be no use of overtime. That’s the rule now for firefighters.</p> <p>       -- All public safety employees will continue to receive annual cost-of-living adjustments to their annual retirements benefits. For firefighters, the annual bump will be 3 percent. For police officers, it will be 2 percent. The city had sought to cut the police cost-of-living adjustment to 1.5 percent.</p> <p>       -- Pensions benefits are calculated by using a “multiplier”’—a set percentage—with an employee’s average monthly earnings and years of service. The higher the multiplier, the higher the benefits, though no retiree can make more per month than what the city paid him or her while working. For firefighters, the multiplier will be 3.4 percent. For police officers, it will be 3.5 percent. The city had tried to cut the multiplier to 3 percent for police.</p> <p>       -- All public safety employees would be eligible to retire after 20 years of continuous service at any age or at 55 after 10 years.</p> <p>Jeremy Rodgers, who took his council seat just two weeks ago, is more skeptical of the contract terms. On Monday, Rodgers said he hadn’t decided how he would vote. The multipliers and cost-of-living adjustments, he said, looked high. He doesn’t like the use of overtime. He questions projections that the police-fire fund’s investments will produce an annual return of 8 percent.</p> <p>And like Weinroth, Rodgers is “frustrated” by how little control the council ultimately has over such an important issue.</p> <p>There are eight members of the Police &amp; Firefighters Pension Board. The city council appoints four members. The police and fire unions get the other four appointments. The board makes all decisions about the fund’s investments, even though the city council—which has no input—would have to deal with any budget problems resulting from the board’s bad decisions. “They’re like the (Boca Raton) Airport Authority,” Weinroth said. “We appoint members, but they do what they want to do.”</p> <p>The board hired the actuarial firm that prepared the 30-year projections on the pension program from the new contracts. Rodgers and Weinroth said city staff sought information from the firm—Foster &amp; Foster, based in Fort Myers—to verify those projections. Weinroth and Rodgers said staff members were unable to obtain all the information they needed.</p> <p>The pension board, Weinroth said, “hasn’t given full cooperation.” Bradley Heinrichs, who prepared the report for Foster &amp; Foster, said Monday, “All of the parties have obtained the necessary information.” Heinrichs also said, though, that his firm had been working on the report since late last summer. Contract negotiations didn’t end until December, and Heinrichs said there have been changes since then. The longer it takes for the contracts to be final, he said, the more the numbers might change as more employees are “insulated” from pension changes that usually fall harder on new hires and those with less service, since with unions it’s all about seniority.</p> <p>In fact, Mayor Susan Haynie and the city council will cast a major vote tonight that comes with too much uncertainty. They gave city staff direction about the police and fire contracts, which the staff gave to the city’s lawyers. The contracts are based in part on the actions of a board over which the council has no direct control. The financial estimates for the contracts come from a firm the council didn’t hire. Footnote: the unions may ask the council to reimburse their costs for the actuary. Weinroth called that “hard to justify.”</p> <p>Similar frustration prompted Delray Beach to leave the state program that dictates who serves on pension boards. Delray will give up roughly $500,000 a year from an assessment on insurance policies that cities can use for their police and fire pension plans. In return, when the change takes effect this year after the city approves the next fire contract, Delray will have control over pension investments and financial projections.</p> <p>Boca Raton would have to give up about $2 million annually to make such a change, and it couldn’t happen until the contacts come up again in 2017. But if pension reform is the priority that Haynie and the council members say it is, approval of the police and fire contracts should lead to a discussion about even bigger reform.</p> <h3>Chabad?</h3> <p>For years, La Vielle Maison was a Boca Raton dining fixture on Palmetto Park Road just east of the Intracoastal Waterway. Apparently, on the site of what was “The Old House” soon will be a house of worship. And that house wants to be higher than rules allow.</p> <p>Before the Boca Raton City Council tonight is a recommendation from City Manager Leif Ahnell in favor of a conditional use approval for the Chabad of East Boca synagogue. If the council agrees, the structure could be 40 feet, 8 inches high, instead of 30 feet. The Planning and Zoning Board voted 4-2 for approval. The synagogue would have to minimize the impact from traffic. Among the conditions: No more than 222 people could attend High Holy Days services.</p> <h3>Red light full stop?</h3> <p>A Palm Beach County judge just ruled that Boynton Beach’s red-light camera program violates state traffic laws, even though the city thought that its program could stand up in court. Today, the Florida Senate considers legislation that would put further pressure on cities or counties seeking money from red-light runners.</p> <p>In 2010, the Legislature passed statewide rules for traffic cameras. This year’s Senate bill would require local governments to show that they had tried other “countermeasures”—longer yellow lights, for example— before installing the cameras. The government would have to present a traffic study showing that the cameras were necessary. According to an analysis of SB 1184, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles has been “unable to determine the effectiveness that red light cameras have in decreasing intersections crashes due to the inability to validate vehicle crash information provided by the various jurisdictions.”</p> <p>In other words, no one knows if the cameras really improve safety, despite statements to that effect by the companies that install and operate the cameras. This isn’t just a Florida controversy. Cameras were an issue in Chicago’s recent mayoral election. The city has the nation’s most extensive program, and the city also holds traffic lights yellow for just three seconds—the shortest time allowed under federal transportation laws. A resident who has been fined more than $1,000 told USA Today that the program amounts to a city “slush fund.” If cities and counties in Florida really care about red-light running, they should use real police officers to solve the problem.</p> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 14 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchThe Week Ahead: April 14 to 20<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/April/782bd0bba277bb29b6db5c6454c9c.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Diana Krall</strong></p> <p>Where: Adrienne Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $55-$75</p> <p>Contact: 305/949-6722, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Canadian jazz pianist Diana Krall’s music usually exists out of time and certainly out of trend: She has scored hits with her personal interpretations of Gershwin, Cole Porter and Irving Berlin songs on through to Burt Bacharach and Tom Waits. Having conquered the Jazz Age, the Great American Songbook and much of the Great White Way to the tune of two Grammy Awards and more than 15 million albums sold worldwide, Mrs. Elvis Costello is currently applying her singular soulful style to the pop music she grew up. Her current world tour coincides with the release of her 12<sup>th</sup> studio album, “Wallflower,” a collection of covers ranging from Elton John’s “Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word” to Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” with the Eagles, Mamas &amp; the Papas, Bob Dylan and an all-new Paul McCartney cut in the mix as well.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/April/e07190ffd4cf4fc7bba192605f269f59_cannes-2014_2.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “The Salt of the Earth”</strong></p> <p>Where: Living Room Theaters at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: Show times pending</p> <p>Cost: $6.50-$9.50</p> <p>Contact: 561/549-2600, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The world may be black and white in the best photographs of Brazil’s Sebastiao Salgado, but if any documentary photographer can capture all of its shades of a grey in single, definitive snapshots, it’s this award-winning artist. Salgado’s subjects are nothing less than the human condition, the state of the globe and the connections between the two; to that end, he’s shot photos in more than 100 countries and captured international conflicts, starvation and exoduses in his 40-year journey painting truth and poetry with his camera. The great German director Wim Wenders, whose credits range from the metaphysical masterpiece “Wings of Desire” to the music documentary “Buena Vista Social Club,” co-directs this look at Salgado’s life and work, coinciding with the photographer’s recent focus on documenting the few areas of pristine landscape that remain untouched.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="148" src="/site_media/uploads/April/048f38b7ca9d2268cdb11c08cfc74927.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “The Addams Family—A New Musical Comedy”</strong></p> <p>Where: Evening Star Productions at Sol Theatre, 3333 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25 adults, $10 students</p> <p>Contact: 561/447-8829, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>In this musical adaptation of the vintage comic-strip characters, change is afoot for the macabre family: Wednesday Addams is planning to settle down with a “normal” boy, which leaves her parents wondering where they went wrong and questioning their own relationship. Truth potions, giant pet squids, torture and tango dances follow in this award-winning musical comedy, which is dark enough for adults and jaunty enough for kids. The musical has toured at venues such as the Kravis before, but Evening Star is producing the musical’s professional regional premiere—an ambitious choice for the intimate Sol Theatre space. Samantha Streich and George Macia lead a 16-member cast that will bring such iconic characters as Uncle Fester, Lurch and Pugsley to life. The show runs through May 3.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="265" src="/site_media/uploads/April/104787-the-who-3.2009.brisbane617.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: The Who and Joan Jett</strong></p> <p>Where: AmericanAirlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $36.50-$136.50</p> <p>Contact: 786/777-1250, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Still windmilling after all these years, The Who has endured the deaths of two founding band members, a notorious tragedy at a 1979 concert, and an approximately 17-year hiatus. Now plenty grayer than when they British-invaded us in 1965, Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey are celebrating 50 years of changing rock ‘n’ roll for the better: After all, we have the Who to thank for rock operas, Marshall stacks, synthesizers and more. Titled “The Who Hits 50,” the band’s 2015 jaunt may very well be its last; Daltrey called it the band’s “long goodbye.” Townshend has insisted that the set list will consist of “hits, picks, mixes and misses,” with the band delving deeper into its catalog than most of its previous tours. Arrive early, because the Who is bringing along an opening act that’s normally a bona fide headliner in her own right: This year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Joan Jett.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="599" src="/site_media/uploads/April/orlando1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Apollo Awards concert and reception</strong></p> <p>Where: Jazziz, 201 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $250-$300</p> <p>Contact: 866/687-4201, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>If you’ve never heard of the Apollo Awards, that’s because there haven’t been any, until now. On the occasion of its 10<sup>th</sup> anniversary, the Boca Symphonia will host the inaugural Apollo Awards, named after the Greek god of music and poetry and honoring modern artists who respect the memory of classical composition, at this luxe Jazziz bash. This year’s recipients will be the Symphonia’s founding benfactors, Edith and Martin B. Stein; Dennis Lambert, the Boca-based songwriter and pop vocalist; and the late Ervin Drake, who has written songs for Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday and others. Tony Orlando will provide the entertainment, singing his own No. 1 hits as well as compositions written by Drake and Lambert, in a one-of-a-kind performance. The ticket price includes wine, hors d’oeuvres and food stations.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="259" src="/site_media/uploads/April/3025606-smithkindy.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Kevin Smith</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Improv, 550 S. Rosemary Ave., Suite 250</p> <p>When: 9:45 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $40</p> <p>Contact: 561/833-1812, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Director Kevin Smith proved, in 1994, that you can make a movie with no money, no color, no story and no actors of any discernable talent, and still create a distinctive, enduring hit. Even if Clerks was the only title on Smith’s resume, he’d be a footnote in the film history, but, through his production company View Askew, he’s built a communal empire of a dozen more movies, many of them featuring recurring characters and repeated locations. He’s also branched away from movies, lending his geek-icon worldview to comic books, TV series, podcasts and memoirs; if he’s not yet the king of all media, he’s certainly a jester in the court. Since the early 2000s, he’s been touring the country for Q&amp;A sessions with his hoards of devoted fans, which is the occasion of this weekend’s special “Evening With Kevin Smith” event.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="200" src="/site_media/uploads/April/13f216151863580dec8839165187cea8e763cbfad97ba01cf0b501cfe137f963_-original.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen</strong></p> <p>Where: Fillmore Miami Beach, 1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $78.75-$353.75</p> <p>Contact: 305/673-7300, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Miami Beach’s Fillmore is one of just four nationwide stops for this intimate and unpredictable conversation between two of television’s most prominent gay broadcasters. Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen—their tour is dubbed “AC2,” get it?—first met years ago, when they were set up on a date that never materialized. Since then, they’ve remained close friends while taking somewhat divergent career paths: Cohen’s late-night Bravo show is a pop-cultural palooza, while Anderson covers breaking news and sociopolitical issues on CNN. But both have vested interests in both the trivial fluff and vital issues, and the tour promises “deep talk and shallow tales.” It’s also being billed as an uncensored and unscripted evening, ensuring that each of the four shows will be different.</p> <p>MONDAY, APRIL 20</p> <p><img alt="" height="518" src="/site_media/uploads/April/miralogo.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: “Mira” reading</strong></p> <p>Where: Wold Performing Arts Center at Lynn University, 3601 N. Military Trail, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $10</p> <p>Contact: 561/237-9000, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Rehearsal time? Who needs it! Certainly not the fine actors of South Florida regional theater who, by now, are accustomed to encountering a script over a morning or afternoon and then performing it the next day. That’s pretty much the case with many of the plays in Jan McArt’s New Play Reading Series; at the time of this writing, Michael Leeds had yet to turn in his script for “Mira,” which will be performed live in a staged reading next Monday night—but you can guarantee the actors will be ready. The protagonist of “Mira” is, in fact, a mirror, which lives inside the wardrobe department of a Hollywood studio circa 1928 and yearns to truly be seen, not just looked at. This “reflective” play may eventually become a musical, but for now, enjoy a bare-bones, song-less reading of this imaginative comedy. The stellar cast features Todd Bruno, Clay Cartland, Ken Clement, Lindsey Corey, Elizabeth Dimon, Laura Hodos, Ann Marie Olson and Stephanie White.</p>John ThomasonMon, 13 Apr 2015 16:19:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsMorikami Hatsume Festival<p dir="ltr"><img alt="" height="361" src="/site_media/uploads/geisha.jpg" width="490"></p> <p dir="ltr">Flowers are officially in bloom at the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Delray Beach. The tranquil park will be transformed to celebrate the first bud of spring at the 36th annual Hatsume Fair, which runs this Saturday and Sunday (April 18-19). </p> <p dir="ltr">This year’s event will feature three live entertainment stages. On the Tokyo Stage, renowned taiko drumming groups Ronin Taiko and Fushu Daiko will perform. On Saturday, come dressed as your favorite anime or video game character and compete in the Costume Contest for prizes from Morikami, Tate’s Comics and the 3000 Brigade.</p> <p dir="ltr">Over at the Osaka stage, martial arts experts will demonstrate a variety of ancient disciplines and showcase local students of all ages. Performances will be held every hour, on the hour, from noon to 4 p.m.</p> <p dir="ltr">A new addition to the celebration is the Sake Stage. This savory exhibition includes a Sake 101 class with expert Midori Roth, sushi demonstrations with chef Roy Villacrusis, as well as panel discussions on the culinary arts. A free raffle will be held to win a private dinner at Chef Roy’s newest eatery in Jupiter, Nitrogen.</p> <p dir="ltr">For the first time, the fair will feature a meet-and-greet with anime, comic book and Japanese pop culture characters. Kids can also make crafts, play Japanese games and sing karaoke. Food will be available from a number of Asian and American vendors. Adults can also indulge at the Kirin Beer Garden and Sake Station where they can try exclusive samplings of Japanese craft beer and sake from Echigo Brewery and Dewatsuru Sakura Emaki Rose.</p> <p dir="ltr">Those interested in attending the entire festival can purchase two-day passes online in advance for $17 for adults and $11 for children 4-10. Single day passes cost $12 for adults, $6 for children 4-10. For more information or to purchase tickets visit <a href=""></a> or call 561/495-0233.</p>Annie PizzutelliMon, 13 Apr 2015 15:18:00 +0000 BeachUpcoming EventsEntrepreneurs Shine at FAU<p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/April/soflasunwear.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The Adams Center for Entrepreneurship at Florida Atlantic University—under the direction of Kimberly Gramm, who champions the start-up vision like no one in Boca—continues to be a field of business dreams for those trying to push their fledgling operations to the next level. Look no further than the recent <strong>Business Plan Competition</strong>, which gave FAU students and entrepreneurs an opportunity to rub elbows with and learn from established business leaders, angel investors and other experts.</p> <p>The three-day event culminated in presentations by 16 different teams—eight student-track finalists and eight entrepreneur-track finalists, out of more than 230 entrants—who were competing for a share of some $200,000 in cash and prizes.</p> <p>On the student side, <strong>Thomas Gregory</strong> and <strong>SoFla Sunwear</strong> captured first place, impressing judges with a beach apparel concept that's already generating buzz. During his presentation, Gregory, the company's CEO, noted that SoFla Sunwear has fulfilled orders in 18 states with its mix of men's and women's shorts and T-shirts, as well as headgear and decals.</p> <p>Meanwhile, <strong>Max Cacchione</strong>, CEO of <strong>Rotation Manager</strong>, took home the entrepreneur track's top prize on behalf of his company with a concept already making a difference for nursing students. Rotation Manager eliminates the paperwork associated with clinical rotations by bringing nursing students, hospitals and colleges into one easy-to-manage software platform. </p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/April/rotationmanager.jpg" width="400"></p>magazineMon, 13 Apr 2015 15:16:00 +0000 NewsPatton Oswalt, Florida Satirist<p>Comedian Patton Oswalt visited Florida last night as part of the South Beach Comedy Festival, and he didn’t let Florida off easy.</p> <p>He said that the state isn’t America’s penis, as it’s often pejoratively referred; it really should be called America’s ballsack, droopy and sweaty and humid. Florida is “the sphincter of Satan,” and “a Japanese horror film with fake boobs.” In this “nightmarish life you mutants have built for yourself,” “I just assume everyone down here is a criminal,” and “the only reason to visit this state is to identify your dead daughter’s body.”</p> <p>We didn’t take it personally. Each barb was met with laughter and an “ooooh” of recognition at the truths buried in these vivid generalizations.</p> <p><img alt="" height="218" src="/site_media/uploads/April/patton.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>A former writer for “MADtv” and the author of two memoirs, Oswalt is a persuasive wordsmith whose act is a Venn diagram flourishing on the nexus of the highbrow humor column, the nerd podcast and the standup gutter. He opened his hour-plus-long set at the Fillmore last night with a story about his worst gig ever, colorfully describing an epically bad show, two years into his career, in which he suffered from a destabilizing flu: Liquids emitted from multiple orifices, and he looked like a garden cherub as designed by an angry sculptor.</p> <p>He described his mother’s giant container of prescribed uppers and downers as a “trail mix of narcotics,” musing, “is this oxy locally sourced?” When his daughter stands up to a birthday party clown who’s just going through the motions, he labels this mutinous act as her “Tiananmen Square moment,” while his own moment of adolescent rebellion consisted of blasting “a deep cut from Duran Duran’s ‘Rio’ album.”</p> <p>References to cult movies (“Escape From New York,” “Blade Runner,” “Stripes”) punctuated the material of this self-described movie obsessive, with the assumption that we all knew exactly what he was talking about; when you see Patton Oswalt live, a working knowledge of critically undervalued ‘80s films is a must. His strongest material wrapped us snugly into his culturally literate, geek-fried worldview, where 30-year-old television jingles for local Dodge dealerships take up the precious brain space that should go to mastering CPR, learning a karate move or planting a vegetable. This resulted in the hilariously therapeutic observation that “I honestly cannot be more useless on a practical level. There is no reason for me to be alive.”</p> <p>Finally, his political humor proved that he’s as strong at this specialized branch of comedy as Bill Maher or any of its heavy hitters, establishing his liberal bona fides before leveling pointed criticism at the last presidential administrations. It was a fantastic and rare set from this multi-pronged talent, one that felt extemporaneously tailored specifically to us.</p> <p>But I can’t conclude this column without mentioning the gaggle of oblivious, selfish drunk girls seated next to us, who not only disrupted the show to engage in a dead-end “conversation” with Oswalt, but spilled a beer on my wife’s brand-new dress and could muster only a half-apology for it. Their constant cell phone usage and running commentary ruined the evening for all the poor souls who happened to be seated anywhere in their immediate circumference. The Fillmore’s countless ushers did nothing about it, and I was too upset to appreciate the last 20 minutes of Oswalt’s act,</p> <p>It’s not usually in my nature to use this blog for personal attacks, but believe me—I’m being nice. If you’re reading this, ladies, most of the words I have for your cannot be printed, and I hope for the sake of future audiences and comedians that this was your last comedy show.</p> <p><em>The South Beach Comedy continues with multiple events through Saturday, April 11. For the full schedule and ticket prices, visit</em></p>John ThomasonFri, 10 Apr 2015 14:14:59 +0000 & EventsFashion Forward: Saks Personal Shopping Van and Colonnade Outlet Expansion<p><img alt="" height="274" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/saks-personal-shopping-van.png" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Saks Personal Experience</strong></p> <p>Can’t make it to the mall? Don’t worry: Saks Fifth Avenue in Palm Beach can come right to your front door. The recently launched Personal Shopping Van will travel throughout South Florida and pick up merchandise from any of the six Saks stores in the area. For a special night, customers can even request that the van bring along makeup artists, fashion stylists and tailors. There is no minimum purchase required. To schedule a Personal Shopping Van call 561/833-2551.</p> <p><strong>Colonnade Outlets Expansion</strong></p> <p>Sawgrass Mills (<em>12680 W. Sunrise Blvd., Sunrise</em>) is bringing four more exlcusive stores to South Florida. Ted Baker, Alexis Bittar, La Perla, and Vince are expected to open early next year as part of the 80,000-square-foot expansion of the Colonnade Outlets.</p> <p><strong>Read My Lips</strong></p> <p>Make a statement without saying a word with Too Faced new eye-popping lip colors.  Try out the new melted metal collection at Sephora inside JCPenny at the Boynton Beach Mall (<em>801 N. Congress Ave., Boynton Beach</em>) on April 11, from 12 to 5 p.m. Beauty Insiders will get a complementary makeover by a Too Faced makeup artist and leave with a free gift.</p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 10 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsStaff Picks: Shoe repair, Monopoly and more<p><strong>Cove Shoe Repair</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/coveshoerepair.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“A small family shop that does great work at affordable prices and has stellar costumer service—meaning they never make fun of those beat up shoes you can’t part with.”</p> <p>471 N.E. 20th St., Boca Raton // 561/221-1727</p> <p><strong>Monopoly Night for Boca Helping Hands</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="174" src="/site_media/uploads/monopoly.jpg" width="370"></p> <p><em>Picked by Kevin Kaminski, Editor</em></p> <p>No one puts a classic board game to better use than our good friends at Boca Helping Hands. For the ninth year, the organization whose food and job mentoring programs serve thousands in the community is encouraging attendees to "Pass Go" with a Monopoly event and casino night, this time at Via Mizner Golf and Country Club. The festivities start at 6 p.m. on Saturday night. Call 561/417-0913, ext. 202 for details. </p> <p><strong>Trader Joe’s Milk Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Pretzels</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="370" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/traderjoespretzels.png" width="274"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>“If I was Clark Kent, this would be my kryptonite. Seriously. Get these sweet-and-salty treats within my reach, and I’ll be on my knees begging. The 12-ounce bag never lasts more than two days in my household.”</p> <p>55 S. Federal Highway, Boca Raton // 561/338-5031</p> <p><strong>Our Boat House in Mizner Park</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/ourboathouse.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Rebecca Valenza, National Account Manager</em></p> <p>“The best decor around. Everything from sofas to candles to pillows to throws, plus they offer design services – much needed in my case!”</p> <p>425 Plaza Real, Boca Raton // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 10 Apr 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Crossing concerns, Houston&#39;s &amp; Delray supports the Inspector General<h3><img alt="" height="338" src="/site_media/uploads/site-plan.jpg" width="450"></h3> <h3>Atlantic Crossing</h3> <p>Atlantic Crossing was controversial long before the Delray Beach City Commission approved the mixed-use project in December 2012. Demolition is underway, but the controversy continues.</p> <p>The immediate issue is a road—an easement, technically— that was on the Atlantic Crossing site plan and now isn’t. The debate is over whether the city actually gave up rights to that city-owned easement—called Atlantic Court—and, if so, when and how the city did that.</p> <p>Atlantic Crossing will take up the two blocks between Northeast Sixth Avenue—Federal Highway—and Veterans Park on the north side of Atlantic Avenue and the south side of Northeast First Street, replacing the Atlantic Plaza shopping center. From the start, critics have said the project would overwhelm the area. In approving Atlantic Crossing, the city commission in office at that time approved conditional uses allowing a 60-foot height instead of 48 feet and a nearly 50 percent increase in density.</p> <p>The site plan from a development agreement dated July 2011 shows Atlantic Court providing access to Atlantic Crossing off Federal Highway, offering an entrance and exit on the west side to relieve traffic congestion. The main entrance will be onto Seventh Avenue from Atlantic Avenue in the middle of the project.</p> <p>Last October, however, the new site plan from the proposed amended development agreement did not show Atlantic Crossing. The agreement was before the city commission for approval, but the commission took no action. One reason was private lawsuits against the project and the question of whether Delray Beach would be affected if the city approved the agreement and the developers lost in court. Commissioner Shelly Petrolia also had questioned Section 4 of the proposed agreement, which stated that any prior approvals that didn’t conform to the new site plan—minus Atlantic Court—would no longer have “any force and effect.”</p> <p>Nearly seven months have passed, and the developers are proceeding as if that current site plan is in effect, even though it doesn’t seem to match the plat that is on file with Palm Beach County and includes Atlantic Court. To support their case for moving ahead, the developers point to the January court ruling against residents who had sued over the easement. The judge wrote that in January 2014 the commission approved the new site plan—minus Atlantic Court—“and by extension a new plat. . .”</p> <p>Petrolia disagrees. She argues that only the city’s Planning and Zoning Board can approve plats, not the Site Plan Review and Advisory Board (SPRAB). A Feb. 23 Planning and Zoning Board meeting on Atlantic Crossing ended inconclusively. As for what the judge called that January 2014 approval of a new site plan, the issue was whether the commission would uphold the private-party appeal of SPRAB’s approval of the new site plan. The commission declined to uphold the appeal. Did that refusal also amount to approval of the new site plan and abandonment of Atlantic Court?</p> <p>The vote at that meeting was 3-2, with Petrolia and Mayor Cary Glickstein in the minority and Adam Frankel, Angeleta Gray and Al Jacquet in the majority. Frankel and Gray are no longer on the commission.</p> <p>According to the minutes of the meeting, Glickstein pointed out that while Atlantic Crossing is roughly the same size as Mizner Park in Boca Raton, there are 13 ways in and out of Mizner Park, reducing the impact on neighborhoods to the east. There would be nothing like that, Glickstein said, for Atlantic Crossing. He called the new site plan “deeply flawed” and wondered aloud why the developers were so reluctant to add back the road.</p> <p>Mitch Katz, who joined the commission last week, also objects to the loss of Atlantic Court. “We gave away alleys and Northeast Seventh Avenue” with everyone’s knowledge, he said in an interview, to help with traffic from Atlantic Crossing, “But nobody noticed on Atlantic Court? I just don’t understand.” Katz says the city gave up the easement “with no compensation, and now we’ve lost the traffic flow.” Petrolia says, “I feel like we’ve been hoodwinked.”</p> <p>This is a very big question to be left hanging. If the city doesn’t address it soon, the developers could have grounds for a lawsuit that the city objected too late and caused them needless expense. The city might have leverage in the form of that development agreement. After the court ruling, the developers said in a statement that they want Delray Beach “to work with us and expedite the development agreement. . .without further delay.”</p> <p>Katz told me that he has been speaking with residents who filed the lawsuits against Atlantic Crossing. Those residents, Katz said, would be willing to pursue no more litigation if the developers would return Atlantic Crossing to the site plan. The city would agree to approve the new site plan quickly, so as not to hold up work.</p> <p>Delray Beach needs to resolve the issue of the Atlantic Crossing easement. Petrolia says the city can give up property only if there is a public hearing. The issue goes beyond Atlantic Court. In May, the city must decide whether to give up an alley that would allow construction of the project that would include an iPic theater. This controversy should stop with Atlantic Crossing.</p> <h3>Houstons?</h3> <p>There still is no proposed lease between Hillstone Restaurant Group and Boca Raton for a Houston’s on the city-owned Wildflower property at East Palmetto Park Road and Northeast Fifth Avenue. Nor is there a proposed site plan. Today, however, the Planning &amp; Zoning Board will consider a rezoning that would be necessary to accommodate the restaurant.</p> <p>The property is slightly larger than two acres. It has split zoning. If the board recommends approval and the city council agrees, the zoning on roughly the northern half of the property would change from Single Family Residential to Local Business. The council also would have to change the Future Land Use Map of the Comprehensive Plan.</p> <p>Councilman Robert Weinroth calls the item on today’s agenda a “housekeeping item to deal with inconsistent zoning issues.” This change isn’t controversial. The tough work will come when the city and Hillstone try to agree on a site plan that would make the restaurant compatible with the area. More than residents of the immediate area worry that, with the large Palmetto Promenade mixed-use project just to the west, the restaurant could make gridlock a regular feature of the intersection.</p> <p>Hillstone and the city also have to decide financial issues: how much Boca Raton would get in lease payments and a percentage of sales. Then there’s the matter of preserving public access to the Intracoastal Waterway—the property fronts it—and not letting restaurant parking interfere with boaters’ use of Silver Palm Park to the south. The hope is for a site plan to reach the Planning &amp; Zoning Board this summer.</p> <h3>Delray is all in for the Inspector General</h3> <p>It can be hard to find lawyers who don’t want to sue, but the lawyers on the Delray Beach City Commission have decided that they don’t want to keep suing the county over the Office of Inspector General.</p> <p>Tuesday night, the commission formally withdrew from the lawsuit that began in late 2011 and now includes 13 cities, with West Palm Beach taking the lead. Last month, Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Catherine Brunson ruled against the cities on all points, as she should have. The lawsuit seeks to cripple the office’s overwork that city residents asked for, though the cities claim that their only issue is the financing of the office.</p> <p>With Delray Beach out of the lawsuit, Boca Raton should withdraw. The cities have asked for a rehearing that they likely won’t get. The lawsuit never had merit. That’s why it doesn’t have a chance.</p>Randy SchultzThu, 09 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Watch&quot;Oklahoma!&quot; More Than OK!<p><img alt="" height="298" src="/site_media/uploads/10006107_795779723809961_6046774037332970228_n.jpg" width="450"></p> <p>Here at we usually leave the theater reviews to our crack arts and entertainment editor, John Thomason. But in this particular case, I felt I had to step in. The Wick was mounting a production of “Oklahoma!” And I could not resist. </p> <p>I grew up with these musicals. My patents saw “South Pacific” on Broadway on their honeymoon in New York. They had LPs of “Oklahoma!” and “Flower Drum Song” and “The King and I” and “West Side Story” and “Carousel” and that was way back, when I was maybe 9 or 10. I saw all the movies and memorized all the songs and I am sure the story lines completely colored my world view of love and destiny—which is tragic of course, as real life has absolutely no resemblance to Bali Ha’i, no one is younger than springtime forever, and the cowboys and the farmers are still not the best of friends. </p> <p>Still, there was real magic in those musicals—pathos, humor, innocence, energy—a sense of post World War America at its best—and the Wick production of “Oklahoma!” captured all of that. Ian Parmenter as Curly and Lindsey Bliven as Laurey sounded as least as good as Gordon MacRae and Shirley Jones—and Missy McArdle as Aunt Eller nailed it. Shane Tanner was an excellent Poor Jud, and Alex Jorth as Will Parker nearly stole the show. They—and the earnest can-do vigor of the Oklahoma territory—came to life on the stage. You could see young and old alike tapping knees, singing along softly under their breath, transported to a time and a story with neatly defined values of decency and community and young love and hopeful tomorrows. It was Rogers &amp; Hammerstein’s first collaboration—and the debut of this country’s golden age of musical theater.</p> <p>It’s easy for a community theater production to look like one, but in this case, the Wick nailed it. Director Norb Joerder was largely faithful to the Agnes deMille choreography, but with a shorter dream sequence ballet (Bravo—I always thought this slowed down the show) and only 12 dancers, which played like a much larger ensemble. The set was perfect, the music timeless, and there’s just not a bad seat in the house.</p> <p>Am I gushing? Maybe. People will say I’m in love? Possibly. At any rate, go now—indulge yourself. The production runs through April 26.</p> <p>The Wick Theater<br>7901 N. Federal Highway<br>561/995-2333</p>Marie SpeedWed, 08 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & EventsMust-Have Kitchen Tools<p>I’m often asked about my favorite kitchen equipment—which brands and models work best, which specific tools enhance the overall cooking experience. So without further ado, here are a few of the items that make my kitchen life easier.</p> <p><strong>HAMILTON BEACH TEA KETTLE<br></strong>After I wake up in the morning, I drink 16 to 24 ounces of plain hot water—without lemon, honey or any additional ingredients. Drinking plain hot water can help stimulate your lymphatic system without activating digestion; this helps your body get rid of waste before it starts processing new food. To heat up my water, I turn to my stainless-steel <a href="">Hamilton Beach kettle</a>. I recommend only buying stainless-steel kettles and avoiding anything with plastic, as heat can activate chemicals that leak into your water. I also avoid microwave ovens for heating purposes; microwaves are a form of electro-magnetic radiation. </p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="193" src="/site_media/uploads/April/omegagiveaway.png" width="275"></strong></p> <p><strong>OMEGA 8006 JUICER/NUTRITIONAL CENTER<br></strong>After I have my hot water, I usually enjoy a green juice made with kale, cucumber, celery, lemon, ginger and green apple. I love juices for their instant energy boost; they are better than coffee! Green juices also are a great complement to a hot, cooked meal as raw juice can provide daily vitamins and enzymes. Believe it or not, it only takes about 2 minutes to make my juice, thanks to the <a href="">Omega 8006</a>. But don’t be fooled: This machine is much more than a juicer. It’s an entire nutrition center that can create fabulous nut butters (think almonds and chocolate chips together), fruit sorbet and even pasta. Best of all, it’s quick and easy to assemble and take apart, so the whole process takes minutes. Omega also offers a great warrantee, so you can enjoy your purchase for years to come.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="264" src="/site_media/uploads/April/vitamix.jpg" width="275"></strong></p> <p><strong>VITAMIX 5200<br></strong>If I don’t feel like having a juice in the morning, I will make a smoothie in my <a href="">Vitamix</a> blender. Unlike a juicer that extracts the pulp from fruits and vegetables and gives you instant energy, Vitamix blends everything together. The good thing about blended foods is that they have fiber, which takes longer to digest than juice. So if you’re looking for a great meal-replacement smoothie that will satisfy hunger and give you long-lasting energy, Vitamix is the machine to use. You can also use it to make nut-based cheeses, pates and ice creams. Some people may be thrown off by the price ($449), but you’re investing in the Rolls-Royce of blenders. The quality will last a lifetime.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="228" src="/site_media/uploads/April/abundantchefcutlery.jpg" width="275"></strong></p> <p><strong>ABUNDANT CHEF KNIVES AND CUTTING BOARDS<br></strong>Did you know that the most dangerous weapon in your kitchen is a dull knife? The extra force required to use it can lead to a severe kitchen injury. To help me eliminate this danger, I use my <a href="">Abundant Chef zirconium ceramic knives</a> and bamboo cutting boards. If diamonds are a girl’s best friend, then these knives come in a close second. When you use an Abundant knife to cut an apple, it feels like you’re cutting through butter—so smooth and effortless. I also love the name and believe that seeing the word “abundant” when you cook, creates positive emotions and affects the energy you put in your food.</p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="180" src="/site_media/uploads/April/kitchenprocessor.jpg" width="275"></strong></p> <p><strong>KITCHENAID FOOD PROCESSOR<br></strong>Finally, to make a quick dinner, I recommend the <a href="">KitchenAid Food Processor</a> as it can help me chop, slice and shred large quantities of ingredients very quickly. If you have seen my videos, you probably noticed that I use it a lot. KitchenAid makes slicing onions a breeze, and it takes seconds. Check out this <a href="">video</a> where I use my food processor to make chicken-less chicken salad! While there are other brands on the market, I find that KitchenAid has the most intuitive design and fun colors. Why not have a fabulous Empire Red one? It will brighten up the space and make you feel like an empress of the kitchen!</p>Alina Z.Wed, 08 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 on the Skin Cancer Front<p><strong><img alt="" height="295" src="/site_media/uploads/April/lynncancer.jpg" width="400"></strong></p> <p><strong>New Local Option in Skin Cancer Treatment</strong></p> <p>Boca Raton Regional Hospital’s <a href="">Lynn Cancer Institute</a> announced that it is the first facility in the state to offer a new noninvasive option for treating basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers. The Esteya device precisely delivers radiation to these cancers, with minimal downtime, according to an April 1 press release.</p> <p>Treatment that brings radiation close to the site of cancer is called high-dose rate brachytherapy. The Boca Raton cancer center has used traditional brachytherapy effectively on cancer patients for years. Esteya improves on the traditional approach by delivering a low-energy X-ray, which is less likely to damage surrounding tissue and result in side effects. It offers an important option for patients whose cancers affect cosmetically-sensitive areas, including the face and hands.  </p> <p>For more information, call 561/955-5966.</p> <p><strong>Treatment Research at FAU</strong></p> <p><a href="">Florida Atlantic University</a> announced that it will launch the Office of Substance Abuse, Mental Health and Recovery Research, according to a March 24 news release.</p> <p>The office will be a focal point of research on alcohol and drug abuse prevention and recovery in South Florida. The plan is to conduct internationally recognized research on substance abuse, as well as provide educational opportunities for social workers and other providers who work with people suffering from addictions. In the longer term, the research and educational center will host visits by renowned scholars and practitioners in the field to promote collaborative research efforts, teaching and knowledge sharing.</p> <p>The announcement comes on the heels of a $100,000 gift from the local addiction treatment facility <a href="">Life of Purpose</a>. Other companies have since joined to fuel the new center’s financial goal to raise $3 million to recruit a researcher to spearhead the program. The companies involved include: KIPU Systems, Lumiere Detox Center, Sober Living Outpatient, Sober Living in Delray, Guardian IOP, Boca Detox, The Hartman House and Infinity Behavioral Health Services.</p>Lisette HiltonWed, 08 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyTown NewsArmadillo Cafe Opens in West Boca<p><img alt="" height="100" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/armadillo.png" width="200">One of the best-loved restaurants in South Florida has been reborn once again.</p> <p><strong>Armadillo Cafe</strong> (8221 Glades Rd., 561/405-6152), for more than a dozen years a renowned eatery in Davie, reborn the first time in 2006 as Armadillo Beach Restaurant in Dania Beach (which closed three years later), is now up and running in West Boca.</p> <p>Chef-owner Kevin McCarthy, who like so many local chefs got his start in the Dennis Max restaurant empire, is reprising many of his classic Southwestern-style dishes in his new digs, a modest earth-toned space just west of the turnpike. Think black and white soup, tequila grilled shrimp, chili-cured duck breast and bourbon-chocolate pecan pie.</p> <p><em>* On a personal note, this space will be taking a short vacation while I head off to Las Vegas to drive fast cars and eat slow food. Blogging will resume upon my return. Vroom, vroom!</em></p>Bill CitaraTue, 07 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsInspector General update, red light cameras go south &amp; other news and notes<h3><img alt="" height="120" src="/site_media/uploads/seal.jpg" width="160"></h3> <h3>New admin for county</h3> <p>Bob Weisman has been Palm Beach County administrator for 24 years. Especially in South Florida, that’s the local government equivalent of  “The Phantom of the Opera,” which has been running on Broadway since 1988. No one lasts that long on such a stage.</p> <p>Nor has Weisman faced anything like a no-confidence vote. He will leave in August because he wants to retire, not because he’s being forced out. In a few weeks, the county commission will pick his successor. The seven-member commission has a set a deadline of May in hopes of choosing someone in time for Weisman to help with the transition and in case something expected arises with the commission’s choice. There still would be time to name someone else before Weisman departs.</p> <p>Residents of full-service cities like Boca Raton and Delray Beach might wonder whether the choice matters much to them. It does, for reasons that are obvious and not so obvious.</p> <p>One obvious reason is that city residents also pay county taxes. In Boca, the county tax is the third-largest item on the bill. In Delray, it’s the second-largest. The administrator prepares the operating budget and supervises the county’s finances. Weisman is proud of pointing out that Palm Beach County’s bond rating is AAA, and that’s with all the bonds that are financing, among other things, the investments in Scripps Florida and the Max Planck Florida Institute—with which Florida Atlantic University soon will start a biotech program.</p> <p>But there’s much more. Palm Beach County operates the jail, so cities don’t need to have their own. The sheriff is elected separately, but the sheriff’s budget makes up more than half of that county operating budget. Even cities such as Boca Raton and Delray Beach that have police departments can get help from the sheriff’s office on major investigations, and all police departments use the county’s crime lab. The sheriff’s office is the lead county agency on the regional anti-terrorism task force.</p> <p>The county’s environmental resource management department helps cities with such projects as beach restoration. County staff members help to lobby the Legislature for money to finance such projects. The county runs the bus system. The county park system includes South Inlet Park on the beach in Boca Raton, Green Cay Nature Center west of Delray Beach, the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, the Aqua Crest Pool in Delray Beach and regional parks that attract city folk. Commissioner Steven Abrams, whose Boca Raton/Delray Beach-based district includes just a slice of the unincorporated county, agrees that the county matters in ways that residents may not always appreciate.</p> <p>A search firm and an advisory committee—each commission appointed one member—has cut the field of candidates to six. Four are from out of state, and two are from Weisman’s staff.</p> <p>Those candidates are Deputy County Administrator Verdenia Baker and Assistant County Administrator Shannon LaRocque. I would be surprised if the commission doesn’t pick one of them. Though he has not decided, Abrams said he would have “complete faith” in Baker or LaRocque to take over.</p> <p>Obviously, the argument for hiring from within is continuity. Unlike Delray Beach, where so many problems were evident when Louie Chapman was forced out as city manager, county government is running well. Weisman had a famously prickly relationship with former Inspector General Sheryl Steckler, but during her four years the office found nothing terrible in its investigations of the county. And when the office did find problems—as in how the county buys property—Weisman made the recommended changes.</p> <p>Hiring from within also has been Weisman’s philosophy. As Abrams points out, the leaders of many key departments rose through those departments. Says Abrams, “It’s one of Bob’s qualities.” One can assume that Baker and LaRocque have their jobs because Weisman believes that they could handle his.</p> <p>The other four contenders appear to have good credentials, but they’re all from out of state: two from Maryland, one from New Jersey and another from Washington, D.C. However capable, they wouldn’t know Florida government. Since there’s no strong case for change, I’m guessing that Baker or LaRocque will be the next county administrator.</p> <h3>Funding the inspector                                        </h3> <p>Having lost in court, the 14 cities suing the county over financing of the Office of Inspector General have asked for a rehearing. They likely won’t get it, which again raised the question of whether Boca Raton and Delray Beach should remain as parties in the lawsuit.</p> <p>The motion for rehearing carries the names of Delray Beach City Attorney Noel Pfeffer and Boca Raton City Attorney Diana Grub Frieser. Neither city’s elected body discussed whether to ask for the rehearing. At least in the case of Delray Beach, the filing may have been just a formality. Mayor Cary Glickstein said an email that there would not have been enough time for Pfeffer to get “commission direction” on whether to continue Delray’s role in the litigation. At the next commission meeting, Glickstein said, Pfeffer will “seek direction to withdraw or remain. . .”</p> <p>The supposed process by which these cities mounted the lawsuit remains murky. A spokesman for West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio—the city has done most of the legal work on the lawsuit—said in an email, “There are frequent discussions/phone calls/conversations among representatives of the various cities to talk about the latest developments in the case.” From writing about this case since late 2011, however, I can tell you that many of the cities’ <em>elected</em> representatives don’t have a good handle on the legal arguments or even the basic facts.</p> <p>In about five pages, two county attorneys flick away the flimsy arguments for a rehearing. The cities raise a new issue that they could have raised at trial, and they reprise the bogus argument that city voters who asked by wide margins for inspector general oversight didn’t know that their city would have to pay for it. In fact, the information was in the ballot language.</p> <p>The lawsuit is an affront to the voters. Any elected officials who still wish to continue it should consider how this continued resistance looks to the public.</p> <h3>Red light on the red light program</h3> <p>Officials in Boynton Beach thought that their red-light camera program might be the one to survive the many legal challenges to outsourced law enforcement. Wrong.</p> <p>Last week, Palm Beach County Court Judge Mark Eissey threw out 200 tickets Boynton Beach had issued. Technically, though, the city’s vendor—American Traffic Solutions—issued the tickets. That was the problem.</p> <p>Six months ago, the 4<sup>th</sup> District Court of Appeal upheld a trial judge who found the city of Hollywood’s red-light camera program unconstitutional. Like most programs in Florida cities and counties, Hollywood allowed American Traffic Solutions to review the photos and decide which were violations. The company then issued citations.</p> <p>The court ruled that only certified law enforcement personnel can perform those roles. Because a Boynton Beach officer does a review before citations go out, the city believed that its program would survive. Eissey, though, said that because the company issues the citations, the program violates state law.</p> <p>Boynton’s contract ends next year, and sentiment already was running against the program. Studies are inconclusive as to whether the programs improve safety; some reductions in “T-bone” crashes from running red lights are offset by increases in rear-end collisions as drivers try to avoid getting a ticket.</p> <p>Boca Raton has suspended its program. Delray Beach was smart enough not to start one. The Legislature might offer Boynton Beach some help, but the smart money would be on Boynton’s program ending—and with it local governments’ Great Recession-era money grab.</p> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 07 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityBoca Ballroom Dancers 2015 Announced<p class="Default"><img alt="" height="160" src="/site_media/uploads/boca_ballroom_th-1.jpg" width="160"></p> <p class="Default">Somewhere across our fair city in eight different households, certain individuals are assuming a new interest in this season’s  “Dancing With The Stars.” Eight people find their palms sweating a little, their sleep a little less peaceful, the words fox trot suddenly striking fear into their brave and willing hearts. These are the eight community dancers who will perform this year in Boca’s 2015 Ballroom Battle to benefit the George Snow Scholarship Fund.</p> <p class="Default">And who are these light-footed dauntless souls? Here they are:</p> <h3 class="Default">Brian Altschuler, Executive Director of Human Resources, Boca Raton Regional Hospital</h3> <h3 class="Default">Peg Anderson Greenspon, volunteer extraordinaire</h3> <h3 class="Default">Elias Janetis, founder, MobileHelp</h3> <h3 class="Default">Frank McKinney, real fstate developer and bestselling author</h3> <h3 class="Default">Holly Meehan, photographer, volunteer</h3> <h3 class="Default">Chris Nichols, Founder and CEO, Nichols Wealth Partners</h3> <h3 class="Default">Donna Parlapiano, Senior Vice President, Franchise Operations &amp; Corporate Real Estate, AutoNation, Inc.</h3> <h3 class="Default">Wendy Sadusky, designing housewife</h3> <p>We will be tracking their progress and cheering them on, so watch this space. In the meantime, mark your calendars for the don’t miss event of the year—Boca’s Ballroom Battle— Friday, August 28, 2015, at 6:00 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom of the Boca Raton Resort &amp; Club, A Waldorf Astoria Resort. </p>Marie SpeedMon, 06 Apr 2015 15:44:00 +0000 Week Ahead: April 7 to 13<p>TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/20130410223827-kyle_at_jhs.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Kyle Eastwood Band</strong></p> <p>Where: Jazziz Nightlife, 201 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25-$65</p> <p>Contact: 561/300-0730, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Chalk up another one for Jazziz, which has once again booked an important jazz act that wouldn’t have a proper South Florida venue otherwise. For Eastwood, his last name is a sort of blessing and curse; Clint’s son has seen countless doors in the entertainment industry open as a result of his father’s fame, but at the same time, the challenge of being accepted as his own artist—divorced from his dad’s influence—has taken years. Lord knows he looks remarkably like Clint: His steely eyes could captivate an entire CinemaScope canvas, and his music has made it into eight of his dad’s films, including “Mystic River” and “Million Dollar Baby.” But with every album from his 1998 debut onward, the quick-fingered bassist has come closer to realizing his individual identity. In jazz circles, his heritage has little bearing on his current reputation as one of the best stand-up bassists around. His current tour supports his latest release, “The View From Here,” which pays homage to the eclectic jazz sounds he discovered as a youth. </p> <p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="216" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/fed628bf-69b7-49b1-935e-ff267f5aac0f.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of South Beach Comedy Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Multiple venues in South Beach</p> <p>When: Various show times</p> <p>Cost: Varies per event</p> <p>Contact: 800/745-3000, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This staple of springtime laughter on Miami’s trendiest island returns with one of its strongest comedy lineups in years, but it begins as it always does—with a hilarious aperitif from Mad Cat, the experimental Miami theater company. At 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, at the Fillmore’s intimate “Backstage” venue, Mad Cat will present the world premiere of “Earthquake,” written by company member Jessica Farr. It’s a caustic theater-world satire that explores the compromises and concessions playwrights must make to their new works before they can see the footlights of a Broadway stage. Mad Cat also has its claws in other programs at the festival, including two free showcases of local comedy, at 8 p.m. Thursday and 10:30 p.m. Friday. Other festival highlights include hipster favorite Hannibal Buress (8 p.m. Saturday), the ever astute Patton Oswalt (7:30 p.m. Thursday), and television icon Dave Chappelle for three shows (10 p.m. Thursday, 11 p.m. Saturday and 8 p.m. Sunday). Visit the festival’s website for a complete breakdown of events.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="270" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/b9114194-0ea0-4e19-8aa1-312cd5d19455-460x276.jpeg" width="450"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “White God”</strong></p> <p>Where: Lake Worth Playhouse’s Stonzek Theatre, 713 Lake Ave., Lake Worth</p> <p>When: 4 and 8:15 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $6-$9</p> <p>Contact: 561/586-6410, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This Hungarian feature, which its nation submitted for consideration in the 2015 Academy Awards, has been called “haunting” and “extraordinary,” with an m.o. that is both heartbreakingly moving and genuinely disturbing. When a 13-year-old girl, already suffering the trauma of her parents’ divorce, watches as her father abandons her beloved mixed-breed dog on the street, it sets off of a struggle between love and conflict, as the mutt will do anything to reunite with its owner—even if it means amassing every other canine in the dog kingdom in a War of The Species. More “Birds” than “Lassie Come Home,” “White God” has been praised for its handling of rescue dogs as legitimate protagonists; the movie set the world record for the number of dogs (274) used in a film, all of them being mixed-breed shelter dogs. It runs one week only, through April 16.</p> <p>FRIDAY AND SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="235" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/wild-belle-interview-debut-album-isles-sibling-duo.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Transatlantic Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: North Beach Park Bandshell, 501 72<sup>nd</sup> St., Miami Beach</p> <p>When: 6 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $15-$20 per day, $27 for two-day pass</p> <p>Contact: 305/672-5202, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For more than 25 years, the Rhythm Foundation has been bringing music from across the globe to South Florida venues, notably in Miami and Hollywood. And one of the highlights of its programming is its annual Transatlantic Festival, which returns for its 13<sup>th</sup> year at underserved North Beach this weekend. The No. 1 attraction here is Wild Belle (pictured), the duo composed of siblings Elliot and Natalie Bergman, which released the lush, sensual, reggae-tinged indie-pop classic “Isles” in 2013. The festival’s other bookings reflect Rhythm Foundation’s intention to bring musical diversity to South Florida audiences, and include the 11-piece Afro-soul group Budos Band, the Parisian-born hip-hop/Latin musician Ana Tijoux, the experimental Colombian dance sextet Puerto Candelaria, and Miami indie sensations My Deer and Bluejay. Stick around both nights for an after-party at nearby Sandbar Lounge. </p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="260" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/delray-affair-food-booths-1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: The Delray Affair</strong></p> <p>Where: Downtown Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday</p> <p>Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: 561/279-0907, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Long before South Floridians had any other reason to stop in the sleepy outpost known as Delray Beach, they still came in droves for the Delray Affair, the prescient art festival that first spread its canvas across Atlantic Avenue in 1962. More than half a century later, it’s still growing strong, it’s still stopping traffic, and it’s still a marathon for organizers, artists and attendees alike: a sprawl of 12 city blocks that proudly bills itself as the largest arts and crafts festival in the southeastern United States. Visitors can expect to view and purchase work by artists and crafters from 30 states and 12 countries, with a special emphasis on the fun and the funky. In addition, the Delray Affair is bringing back last year’s “Art of the Automobile” showcase, featuring a different collection of vintage American, European and “future classic” cars parked each day at Old School Square Park. And launching this month, the Affair’s enhanced mobile app finally brings this middle-aged institution into the 21<sup>st</sup> century, offering color-coded maps and personal event scheduling for easy smart phone navigation.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/free+bring+your+own+mat+yoga+at+peace+love+&amp;+wellness++music+festival.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Midtown Peace, Love and Wellness Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Main Street at Midtown, 4801 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens</p> <p>When: Noon to 4 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: 561/282-4623, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Now in its third year, this afternoon block party celebrates healthy lifestyles in a fun, eclectic atmosphere, while offering an ideal showcase for Midtown’s restaurants and shops for out-of-town visitors. Local music favorites Ketchy Shuby and Hip Abduction will perform, while attendees can enjoy massages, aerial yoga demonstrations and free gentle yoga classes. Dogs are welcome at the “Yappy Hour” at Cantina Loredo, and children’s activities include a Kids Rock ‘n’ Roll Tent, mural painting, face painting and roving characters. Nosh on items from food trucks and Midtown restaurants and visit the dozens of vendors specializing in health, home, fitness, fashion, wellness and beauty products.</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/alanedited.jpg" width="400"> </p> <p><strong>What: Alan Cumming: Uncut</strong></p> <p>Where: Parker Playhouse, 707 N.E. Eighth St., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $43-$108</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>In his 25-plus years in show business, Alan Cumming has emerged as a naughty LGBT icon, a cult figure on stage and screen with enough panache and talent to excel in mediums are varied as network drama (“The Good Wife”), art-house cinema (“Eyes Wide Shut,” “Urbania”) and Shakespearean theater (he tackled “Hamlet”). But this cabaret tour, which arrives just days after the closing of his award-nominated lead performance in Broadway’s “Cabaret,” features Cumming at his most personal and unfiltered. Given his eclectic track record, it’s no surprise that his cabaret act—which features pop songs as well as more eccentric choices—is also something a variety show, with comedy and storytelling woven through the concert. Popular drag performer Dina Martina will open the show.</p> <p>SATURDAY AND SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="279" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/kenny-chesney.jpg" width="372"></p> <p><strong>What: Tortuga Music Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Fort Lauderdale Beach</p> <p>When: 11:30 a.m. to 10:15 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $99-$799</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Can you tell that we’re smack in the heart of spring festival season in South Florida? One of the area’s newest festivals, sandwiched between Ultra and SunFest, is this country-dominated party on the sun-drenched sand of Fort Lauderdale beach, and dedicated audiences have already established it as a top area attraction. With a lineup as impressive as this year’s twangy roundup, it’s easy to see why: Kenny Chesney (pictured), Zac Brown Band, Jake Owen, The Band Perry, Little Big Town, Trace Adkins, Josh Turner, David Nail, Chase Rice, Colt Ford, and this goes on. Groovy classic-rock legends the Doobie Brothers, reggae festival favorites Sublime with Rome and Americana singer-songwriter Will Hoge offer respites from the country-radio dominance. As far as finding a place to park anywhere near the festival’s two stages? Godspeed. We recommend arriving around dawn.</p>John ThomasonMon, 06 Apr 2015 15:40:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsBeautycounter guru coming to Palm Beach<p><img alt="" height="627" src="/site_media/uploads/gregg-our_story-488x680.jpg" width="450"></p> <p>We all have our favorite beauty products and I know my list is always shifting and growing. I remember getting my make-up done at Boyd’s of Madison Avenue on trips to New York back in the day, which started me on Italian cosmetics. I recall hanging out at the Saks counter in Palm Beach on slow drowsy summer days and trying on lipsticks with stir-crazy salesladies. I love Bobbie Brown’s Heather eye shadow, and I am also not averse to slipping into Walgreen’s for a Maybelline fix.</p> <p>But my new favorite line of products is also the healthiest I have ever tried: Beautycounter. Started by Gregg Renfrew and free of all kinds of sketchy chemicals and dyes and toxins, these creams and shadows and lipsticks and make-up are delicious—and safe.   </p> <p>“Like many of you, I'm a wife and mom.” Renfrew says on her web site. “And like many of you, I didn't know what I didn't know. As I applied sunscreen, lotion, and any number of beauty products on myself and my kids, I never thought for a second they might not be safe: After all, I thought, we live in a country that regulates everything. So imagine my surprise when I learned that when it comes to the personal care industry, that's simply not the case. Companies are allowed to use known toxins—ingredients that have been linked to cancer, reproductive issues, hormone disruption—without telling us.”</p> <p>Long story short: Renfrew started her own line of safe beauty products, set up a distribution system of private consultants (up to 4,000 now) and is now another American success story. Renfrew will be here in South Florida to share her story when she comes to the Brazilian Court Hotel in Palm Beach, next Monday, April 13 at 7 p.m.</p> <p>Learn how to avoid bad chemicals —and put a little natural beauty in your life. For reservations, contact <span></span> or 5<span>61/827-5926</span> </p> <p> </p>Marie SpeedMon, 06 Apr 2015 12:01:00 +0000 NewsPatio Tapas Debuts in Boca<p><img alt="" height="113" src="/site_media/uploads/patiotapas.jpg" width="200">Big news for small-plates fans: there’s a new tapas bar in Boca Raton whose chef-owner sports a pretty impressive culinary pedigree.</p> <p>He is Bryant Fajardo, a New York native raised in Colombia who’s cheffed in the Los Angeles and Miami kitchens of Jose Andres, a creative force considered by many one of the best chefs in the world. <strong>Patio Tapas &amp; Beer</strong> (205 SE 1st Ave., 561/419-7239) is Fajardo’s restaurant, which takes over the tiny but hugely charming space once home to A Slice of Provence, a Provencal-style pizzeria that closed abruptly late last year.</p> <p>The charm of the place, with its blue-and-white wicker furnishings, fork-and-spoon chandeliers and cute little patio shaded by colorful umbrellas, remains that same. The menu, though, is pure Spanish, with classics like pan con tomate, gambas al ajillo and octopus salad sharing space with more contemporary stylings like tiny pork belly sandwiches with pickled shallots and lemon aioli and crispy chicken thighs with rosemary honey mustard.</p> <p>There’s a small selection of beers and wines, and for dessert—cotton candy! (Which, BTW, you can get with a side of foie gras. . . my kind of dessert.)</p>Bill CitaraMon, 06 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsMiami City Ballet Announces Dynamic Season<p>Miami City Ballet has already announced its 2015-2016 season of performances, and it’s a doozy. This jewel in South Florida’s cultural crown turns 30 this year, and it is celebrating its anniversary with a new landmark: a national tour, where the company’s ballets will be performed to discerning audiences in New York, Chicago and Minneapolis.</p> <p>The tour will be announced later this spring, but our dates have already been set for a slate of company premieres, beloved classics and one localized reimagining. Here is our preview.</p> <p><strong> <img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/mcb-swanlake.jpg" width="400"></strong></p> <p><strong>Program I (Oct. 23 to Nov. 15, 2015):</strong></p> <p>Only in a season like this one could a program that includes <strong>“Swan Lake”</strong> be considered the most <em>conservative</em> dance lineup of the year. George Balanchine’s one-act version of the dark Tchaikovsky masterwork—a ballet so postmodern it was practically booed off the stage in its 1877 premiere—will cap a program that also includes Jerome Robbins’ exuberant <strong>“Fancy Free,”</strong> the boisterous 1944 ballet about sailors trying to woo women on shore leave, which went on to inspire the musical “On the Town.” <strong>“Viscera,”</strong> choreographed by the British phenom Liam Scarlett, will be re-staged after premiering at Miami City Ballet in 2012. The work lives up to its title by sensually staging its leotard-clad dancers in such a way as to suggest that “we’re watching organic processes occur inside a body,” according to <em>a New York Times</em> rave of the 2012 debut.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/7005_dg_broward_art_center_ballet_mcb_fl_al1b6681.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Program II (Jan. 8-31, 2016)</strong></p> <p>For 25 years, Danish danseur/choreographer Peter Martins has helmed the standard-bearing programming at New York City Ballet, but none of his own works have been produced by Miami City Ballet—until now. His <strong>“Barber Violin Concerto,” </strong>set to the weeping, sweeping composition by Samuel Barber, will juxtapose classical ballet against the angular movements of modern dance. This program also features the triumphant return of <strong>“In the Upper Room,” </strong>celebrating Twyla Tharp’s 50<sup>th</sup> anniversary as a choreographer. In one of her most demanding and iconic works, set to an equally iconic and hypnotic Philip Glass score, shifting costumes, fog, and lighting changes usher in a dance vocabulary that includes ballet, tap dance, boxing, yoga and sprinting. Finally, the program will continue to explore the endless Balanchine oeuvre with <strong>“La Source,” </strong>a classical work inspired by 19<sup>th</sup> century French ballet elegance.</p> <p><img alt="" height="336" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/sunset.jpg" width="400"> </p> <p><strong>Program III (Feb. 12-28, 2016):</strong></p> <p>Justin Peck, one of the hottest young choreographers to enter companies’ repertories in recent years, choreographs the most anticipated ballet of Program III. Enjoying its Miami City Ballet premiere, <strong>“Year of the Rabbit”</strong> takes its score from an unlikely source: the pop composer and indie-music darling Sufjan Stevens, whose 2002 instrumental album “Enjoy the Rabbit,” inspired by the Chinese Zodiac, prompted Peck to choreograph his own interpretation of the astrological symbols. Stevens’ music will set the tone for Peck’s unorthodox movements, featuring 18 dancers and showcasing his 12-member corps de ballet far more than most choreographers. Another MCB premiere, Paul Taylor’s <strong>“Sunset,”</strong> plays like the haunting flipside to the shore-leave ebullience of the season’s earlier “Fancy Free,” addressing soldiers’ separations from their love ones on the home front. The season’s final program, the sly <strong>“Bourree Fantasque,” </strong>finds Balanchine melding Russian dance, the tango and the can-can into his dynamic American formula. </p> <p><strong>Program IV (March 18 to April 10):</strong></p> <p>Every program in this upcoming season promises fireworks, but this is the one we’ve all been waiting for—because it’s homegrown in the best way possible. Miami City Ballet will reimagine Balanchine’s full-evening ballet<strong> “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,”</strong> discovering new avenues to explore in Shakespeare’s timeless comedy of fairies, amateur actors and a sparkling marriage. In a statement, Lourdes Lopez calls Balanchine’s ballet, set to the music of Felix Mendelssohn, “perhaps the most brilliant narrative ballet of the 20th century,” and it will look both fresh and hyper-local in MCB’s hands. Two international artists with Miami ties will help to stage “Midsummer” as a reflection of South Florida: Costume and set designer Michele Oka Doner, and playwright/director Tarell Alvin McCraney, the latter known to GableStage audiences for his inventive “edits” of Shakespeare works like “Hamlet” and “Antony and Cleopatra.”</p> <p>As for the cherry on top, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” featured a leading performance from future MCB founder Edward Villella when it premiered in New York in 1962, making this production both nostalgic and progressive—a fitting conclusion to its 30<sup>th</sup> anniversary season.</p> <p><em>Season subscriptions are available now. For more information about Miami City Ballet, and to purchase tickets, visit</em></p>John ThomasonFri, 03 Apr 2015 10:00:00 +0000 & EventsUpcoming EventsFashion Forward: New Outlet Stores, a Fashion Show and More<p><img alt="" height="259" src="/site_media/uploads/flavors_fashion.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>Flavors and Fashions</strong></p> <p>On Thursday April 2, food and fashion are coming together at the Palm Beach Outlets (<em>751 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd, West Palm Beach</em>). Enjoy a feast of delicious bites from some of the best restaurants in Palm Beach County. Then watch models strut the runway in this year's latest styles and fashion trends. Stay after the show for a live band, prizes and giveaways. Tickets for the event are $30 until March 31, and $40 after, with proceeds benefitting Racing to the Rescue. Purchase your tickets <a href=";SESSION=z00nuUdKJ413NaMAGB2JTTSp-1LUpa_HJqlhwZTjaiIJ9lnBht2sphihDA8&amp;dispatch=50a222a57771920b6a3d7b606239e4d529b525e0b7e69bf0224adecfb0124e9b61f737ba21b081984ae437d023107361d4fe9244fda54de7" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p><strong>Makeup Artist Event</strong></p> <p>Nationally renowned Yves Saint Laurent makeup artist Pamela Morgan will be making a personal appearance at Neiman Marcus in Town Center at Boca Raton on April 10 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. She will share tips and tricks on how you transform your makeup look and offer personal advice on product recommendations.</p> <p><strong>New Colonnade Outlets Store</strong></p> <p>Zadig &amp; Voltaire is coming soon to the Colonnade Outlets at Sawgrass Mills. The French ready-to-wear retailer offers casually refined items with a rock 'n' roll attitude. This will be the store’s first outlet in Florida. </p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 03 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsMax Does Passover<p><img alt="" height="133" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/passover-usa.jpg" width="200">If you haven’t made plans for your Passover dinner, <strong>Max’s Grille</strong> (404 Plaza Real, 561/368-0080) wants to tempt you with theirs.<br><br>Dennis Max’s iconic Mizner Park eatery is offering a $32 prix fixe, three-course menu today and tomorrow from 5 to 11 p.m. Among the choices are starters like chicken vegetable and rice soup or apple-walnut salad, and entrees like half a Murray’s roasted chicken with herb-roasted new potatoes, slow-cooked beef brisket and herb-baked salmon with horseradish-dill sauce. Choose either lemon-almond macaroons or flourless chocolate cake for dessert.<br><br>Best of all: no dishes to wash.<br><br></p>Bill CitaraFri, 03 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsStaff Picks: breakfast spots + caring hearts<p><strong>Bob's Bunz</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bobsbunz.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Karen Jacaruso, Account Executive</em></p> <p>“Heading down to the keys? Gotta stop for breakfast at Bobs Bunz in Islamorada. Everything is homemade, right down to small bakery that houses their key lime muffins. It's a small joint that usually has a line and a "sit wherever you like" mentality. You can't leave without trying their bread pudding French toast (it's serious!).... Oh, and just try getting past the bakery as you're leaving. Ask any local what's the best place for breakfast -- Bobs Bunz!”</p> <p>81620 Overseas Highway, Islamorada // <a href=""></a></p> <p><strong>Boca Breakfast &amp; Lunch Club at Royal Palm Place</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="300" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bocabreakfastclub.jpg" width="450"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Meshi Shoshona, Events + Sales Coordinator</em></p> <p>“My friends and I went to brunch early Sunday morning. The place isn’t that big and doesn’t accept reservations over the phone, so it gets pretty crowded. Once we were seated we got a nice table outside and the weather was perfect. I got a healthy egg white omelette with tomatoes. The staff was very accommodating and would always make sure that everything was ok. I would definitely go back there because it is a place where you can just sit and relax and enjoy a traditional breakfast.” </p> <p>171 S.E. Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton // 561/362-0018</p> <p><strong>Lap of Love</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/lapoflove.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“It’s the service you do not want to use, but it’s one that can make the heartbreak of euthanizing your pet a tiny bit more bearable. You make an appointment, the vet comes to your home and, together, you lovingly help your pet make the transition, as people like to say. It is respectful, warm and dignified—and these people know what you are going through.”</p> <p><a href=""></a></p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 03 Apr 2015 00:00:00 +0000;s comes to downtown Delray and other updates<h3><img alt="" height="148" src="/site_media/uploads/logo.png" width="202"></h3> <h3>Farm to downtown</h3> <p>Downtown Delray Beach has plenty of entertainment amenities, but lacks one basic element: a food market. That should change in the fall.</p> <p>Bedner’s, the popular “farm-to-fork” market/mini-agriculture theme park along U.S. 441 west of Boynton Beach, is expanding to downtown Delray. Operations Manager Marie Bedner says the company will lease a 3,000-square-foot former warehouse at the other end of the block from Third and Third Restaurant, so named because it’s at Northeast Third Street and Northeast Third Avenue in the Artists Alley neighborhood. Design is underway, and Bedner says the plan is to open in November, to take full advantage of high season.</p> <p>Why now? For that best of reasons: demand. Why Delray? That’s where the demand is highest.</p> <p>“It’s driven by our customers,” Bedner says. “They come out here and say to us, ‘This is like going to Belle Glade.’ ” Bedner’s Fresh Farm Market is about 12 miles west on Atlantic Avenue and north on 441 from where the new market will serve all those downtown Delray residents and perhaps more on the coast who don’t know Bedner’s.</p> <p>The current market has been open for five years. Of course, calling Bedner’s a market is like calling Sawgrass Mills a mall. The list of what Bedner’s doesn’t sell might be shorter than what it does sell: peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, broccoli, strawberries -- for which there’s even a you-pick season – and much more.</p> <p>Bedner’s popularity, though, stems from the quality of its produce. It comes from the 80 acres near the market and from other farms nearby and north into Martin County, where the company has 200 acres. When the Florida growing season ends – “sometimes it goes through April,” Bedner says, “depending on Mother Nature” -- the company arranges with growers in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and elsewhere to import products “of the same quality.”</p> <p>Beyond vegetables, fruit and any number of items to make dining great, Bedner’s sells homemade ice cream, runs a petting zoo, offers hay rides – my grandchildren have had one -- and hosts craft shows. Bedner says the company also encourages school field trips, to show children that food doesn’t come from a grocery store and to encourage diets that stress fresh food, to reduce the rate of childhood obesity.</p> <p>Delray Beach tried to get a downtown market for what is now the Arts Garage space. There’s a Publix northeast of Artists Alley on Federal Highway, but the appeal of Bedner’s is that it will be walkable for people living and working right downtown.</p> <p>The move—and the success of Bedner’s—is another reminder of how important it is for Palm Beach County protect the coastal farming area that is the Agricultural Reserve Area. Bedner says the company was “on both sides of the debate” last week before the county commission. Homes bring customers, but too many homes can make it hard to farm. Bedner says the company also faces competition from Mexico’s “dumping” of cheap produce.</p> <p>Imports, though, don’t have the quality that Bedner’s offers. Fortunately, this area has enough customers who want that quality, in all forms. Bedner says Delray Beach has a “big juicing crowd, and we cater to them.” Very soon, that quality will be much closer.</p> <h3>Police vote next week</h3> <p>I have reported that the Fraternal Order of Police has yet to ratify the proposed contract with Boca Raton. The International Association of Firefighters has ratified its contract. The old ones expired last Sept. 30, the end of the city’s fiscal year.</p> <p>A Fraternal Order of Police representative told me this week that a ratification vote has been scheduled for next Tuesday and Thursday. Presumably, if the union approves the contract, it would go to the city council for approval along with the fire contract.</p> <p>Still, the projected pension savings over 30 years from the contracts is roughly $7 million less than the firefighters union advertised last December when the deals were struck. The union estimated the savings at $100 million. Instead, they are $92.8 million.</p> <h3>Bipartisan miracle?</h3> <p>Something incredible happened last week. The U.S. House of Representatives governed. Even better, the House governed in a bipartisan way, and on an issue that is a big one in South Florida.</p> <p>That issue is Medicare payments to doctors and other providers. Seventeen times since 2002, Congress had enacted stopgap measures to avoid big cuts in payment rates, known in Congress as the “sustainable growth rate.” A 21 percent cut is supposed to hit this month.</p> <p>This time, though, the House passed a 10-year plan. The vote was 392-37. The entire Florida delegation—17 Republicans and 10 Democrats—voted yes.The Senate is expected to pass it after the Easter/Passover recess, in time to take effect before the actual checks go out and thus effectively meeting the April 1 deadline.</p> <p>Both parties compromised. Republicans signed off even though the plan is only one-third paid for, so the legislation would increase the deficit. Democrats went along even though the plan will raise costs for some seniors through deductibles on Medigap policies and more means-testing. But Republicans got to claim that they did entitlement reform—a party priority—and Democrats got the Children’s Health Insurance Program financed for two years—a party priority.</p> <p>Republicans didn’t say that the plan builds on a key portion of the Affordable Care Act. One of the lesser-known goals of the law is to base Medicare payments more on outcomes, not just services. The law seeks more accountability in health care spending overall, but Medicare is especially important because it’s the main cause of long-term budget deficits.</p> <p>Boca Raton Regional Hospital seems to agree with that approach. I got this statement on the legislation from Chief Medical Officer Charles Posternack:</p> <p>“In our opinion, it’s beneficial to us. It scraps the old formula and replaces it with value-based reimbursement, which is, in essence, getting paid for what you do well, not just what you do. Given our quality measurements, this will separate Boca Regional from other provides that are less able to match our level of quality care.”</p> <p>And just this once, Congress did something well. The legislation is imperfect; for one thing, it includes payments to Oregon school districts that have lost money from logging permits. Given the recent level of dysfunction in Congress, though, doing well looks almost perfect.</p> <h3>Come on down trips</h3> <p>Gov. Rick Scott will travel to California this month as part of his continued trips to states with Democratic governors and higher taxes. Scott’s pitch is that companies in those states should move to Florida, where business conditions are better and jobs are growing.</p> <p>According to Wells Fargo, though, “Strong payroll gains” are California’s “new norm.” While California’s unemployment rate of 6.7 percent is about a percentage point higher than Florida’s, the state added nearly 30,000 jobs in February.</p> <p>Scott surely will contrast California’s state income tax rate, which in 2013 went to 10.3 percent for incomes of $250,000 and 13.3 percent for incomes of $1 million and higher. Florida has no state income tax.</p> <p>But most employees don’t make nearly that much. Also, multiple studies show that taxes often don’t figure prominently in a company’s decision. Staples, for example, would keep its headquarters in what some derisively call “Taxachusetts” if federal regulators allow the company to merge with Boca Raton-based Office Depot.</p> <p>Scott would do better to stay in Tallahassee and urge the Legislature to give Florida a top-tier university system and the nation’s most skilled workforce. Achieving both goals would be a nice new normal for Florida.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 02 Apr 2015 09:01:00 +0000 WatchCommunityBoca’s Poshest Playgrounds<p>I thought my family and I were spoiled with the parks available to us when we lived in New York City. Boy, was I wrong.</p> <p>Central Park and Hudson River Park are great and two of my all time favorites! But Boca Raton parks are beyond beautiful, plentiful and pristine, and most even have pretty posh playgrounds to boot! Here’s the Boca Mom Talk on my favorite outdoor playground options around Boca Raton.</p> <p><a href="">Spanish River Park</a></p> <p><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/spanish_river.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>If you’re a Boca resident, all you have to do is purchase an <a href="">annual beach permit</a> for $55, and parking is covered for the next year at any of Boca’s beach adjacent parks. It is a deal that I’ve found few parents know about, especially newer residents.</p> <p>The playground at Spanish River is one of my favorites. It’s perfect for the toddler set because of the built-in shade, soft “recycled tire” ground cover (in case your little one takes a tumble) and access to the beach post-playground session. It is a must if you have a child under 3. The equipment is quality and there are plenty of picnic tables available for kids to pause during playtime and have a drink and snack. <em>(3001 Nathan Lester Highway 1, Boca Raton)</em></p> <p><a href="">Patch Reef Park</a></p> <p><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/patch_reef.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Patch Reef Park is the ultimate local recreation paradise with tennis courts, classes and a fitness trail available for residents and their children. But the <em>Pirate Playground</em> is the real draw in my opinion. In addition to the pirate theme, it has soft ground cover a la Spanish River Park along with water features for your Boca kids to keep cool in the hot, South Florida sun. No boy under 10 can resist Pirate’s Cove at this posh playground! <em>(2000 Yamato Road, Boca Raton)</em></p> <p><a href="">Sugar Sand Park</a></p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/sugarsands.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Sugar Sand Park rounds out the top three in this Boca mom’s play(ground) book, as it’s the only park in Boca Raton with a science-oriented playground AND a carousel. Kids love carousels, trust me. This playground also contains water features and plenty of shade and is a ton of fun for toddlers and older kids alike. <em>(300 S. Military Trail, Boca Raton)</em></p> <p>Do you have a favorite park that wasn’t included in this edition of Boca Mom Talk? Comment below!</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><a href="/blog/tag/boca-mom-talk/" target="_blank">For more from Boca Mom Talk, click here.</a></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em><strong></strong>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href="" target="_blank"></a><strong>, </strong>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. <strong>Modern Boca Mom</strong> features events for both mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersThu, 02 Apr 2015 09:00:00 +0000 Review: &quot;Imaging Eden&quot; at the Norton<p>The subtitle of the Norton Museum’s new exhibition “Imaging Eden” reads “Photographers Discover the Everglades.” <em>Discover?</em> Really? Hadn’t this natural wonder of the world, which spreads across two-thirds of Florida and dates back 15,000 years, been pretty well discovered long before the invention of photography?</p> <p>Actually, no. In fact, the Everglades were not been systematically imaged until well into the 20<sup>th</sup> century, according to Norton Photography Curator Tim Wride. Which means that this verdant phantasmagoria of native flora and fauna lived mostly in imaginations and recollections, not all of them accurate. Wride calls the Everglades “one of the most misunderstood landscapes in the nation,” a theory he hopes to rectify with “Imaging Eden.” The exhibition’s purpose is twofold: To showcase Everglades imagery of the last century and to challenge photographers of this century to re-imagine the River of Glass.</p> <p><img alt="" height="568" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/2000.21-utcher.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The first part of the exhibit surveys existing Everglades photos dating back to 1898, most of them shot in evocative black-and-white, even after color printing became commonplace. Back in the ‘50s, Mary Peck shot the Everglades as both a desolate coastline and an endless tangle of plant life—widescreen panoramas that serve as fragments of a vast ecosystem, each image the equivalent of a hair on the pimple of an elephant. Clyde Butcher saw beauty in the skies above the River of Grass, focusing on anthropomorphized clouds on moonlit nights, and Eliot Porter captured the ‘Glades in a micro sense: extreme close-ups of fig roots and saw palmetto, egrets and herons.</p> <p><img alt="" height="515" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/porter-e1426702126782.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Daring to shoot this timeless world in color, Porter’s “Cypress Slough and Mist” appears positively otherworldly, an alien forest tinted with a medical green. For her contribution, Marion Post Wolcott focused not on the place itself but its human inhabitants—namely the migrant workers living in squalor—thus assigning class-consciousness to her documentary reportage.</p> <p>These are the standard-bearers of Everglades images, the ones who laid the groundwork for the mental vista that springs forward when we hear the word “Everglades.” But the deeper you wade into “Imaging Eden,” the more wild and unpredictable the place, and its interpreters, become. The show’s final gallery is also its most exciting, composed of recent Everglades photography, including the work of four photographers commissioned by Wride to film the ‘Glades in a new way.</p> <p>Jerry Burchfield’s camera-less “photography” is the most unique and formally daring. He placed specimens from the River of Grass on light-sensitive paper and left them out in the sun, where the chemical reaction created sepia-like images of saw palmetto, slash pines and more. His poison ivy image is the most chilling, because, through Burchfield’s process, the ivy looks very much like a cancer invading an otherwise healthy species.</p> <p>Other photographers took a more photojournalistic approach. Adam Nadel brings us “backstage” Everglades National Park by revealing the control rooms, pumps, and perfectly grizzled pump station operators whose efforts continue to breathe life into the River. Bryan Wilson’s photos, textiles, documents and other ephemera reflect on the time he embedded himself with the “Swamp Apes,” a group of ex-military men who volunteer their time to protect the Everglades, especially from its invasive python epidemic. And James Balog’s works draw their effectiveness from their size: His hyperreal, large-scale photographs of brown pelicans, turtles and Florida panthers are inescapable reminders of species we risk losing, should overdevelopment continue.</p> <p><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/balog.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Still other artists take more experimental approaches. Gerald Slota’s “Second and Third Seminole Wars” is a staggering, perplexing multimedia work—a wall-sized assemblage of collages within collages that includes gun barrels and tribal faces, some of them with eyes removed. I’ve rarely been so disturbed by a work I didn’t fully understand. The exhibition winds down with Jim Goldberg and Jordan Stein’s eclectic installation, titled simply “Everglades,” which includes time-lapse photography, an inscribed blade lodged in cinderblock and even a canoe suspended upside-down from the ceiling.</p> <p>Not surprisingly, most of the artists hail from the U.S., but not all of them brought new approaches to Everglades photography. Lisa Elmaleh’s black-and-white Everglades images, processed using 19<sup>th</sup> century technology, too obviously recall the work of Walker Evans and Ansel Adams; her work is so influenced by others that it seems superfluous next to the pioneering ‘Glades photography in the next room.</p> <p>My favorite images in the show were the works contributed by artists outside the country, who, perhaps by their nature as foreigners, were able to see a region we take for granted as a truly exotic, mystical place. These include Dara Levy’s video of the Everglades at night—with rain spattering the foliage in trippy slow-motion, and blue and red light showering new mystery on the nocturnal wetlands—and especially Jungjin Lee’s Everglades series. Her shots are black-and-white too, but in a new way—the images are filmy, painterly and almost out-of-focus, with the artist taking inspiration from the views of birds and snakes. She centers one image on a poetically crooked tree, another on a single godlike cloud, another on a precise pattern of trees.</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/sf-west-palm-imaging-eden-everglades-norton-ph-005.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Each image has a beautiful simplicity to it, lacking the busy, teeming tangle of life that many Everglades photographers before her have captured. It’s still the Everglades, just a little more peaceful and Zen. It is a genuine act of discovery.</p> <p><em>"Imaging Eden" runs through July 12 at Norton Museum of Art, 1451 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach. Admission costs $5-$12. For information, call 561/832-5196 or visit</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 01 Apr 2015 10:00:00 +0000 & EventsLocal Hospital Uses Robotics to Treat Arthritic Knees<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>West Boca Medical Center</strong> is the first hospital from Jupiter to Fort Lauderdale to offer partial knee and total hip replacement using a surgical approach called Makoplasty. The surgery involves a surgeon-controlled robotic arm, aimed at enhancing the procedure’s accuracy. Patients also benefit with shorter hospital stays and faster recovery times.</p> <p>The robotic arm is equipped with surgical instruments and a virtual visualization system. This system creates a 3D view of the patient’s bone surface during a procedure and correlates that image to a pre-programmed surgical plan.</p> <p>I asked orthopedic surgeon Dr. Marc Golden to tell <em>Fit Life</em> readers more about Makoplasty. Golden, who practices in Boca Raton and Delray Beach, is one of the few doctors in South Florida trained in the procedure. Here, he talks about Makoplasty for the knee--an option for many people with early to mid-stage knee osteoarthritis.</p> <p><img alt="" height="465" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/dr._marc_golden.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong><em>Boca Mag:</em></strong><em> Describe the Makoplasty procedure.</em></p> <p><strong>Marc Golden:</strong> The Makoplasty procedure for knee arthritis utilizes robotic arm technology to precisely resurface only the diseased area of the knee. This new technology allows for a level of accuracy and reproducibility that is unobtainable with conventional joint replacement procedures. The major advantage is a result of a less invasive procedure, with only the resurfacing of the arthritic portion of the knee. [The approach preserves] cartilage, bone and ligaments. This results in a rapid recovery and a more natural feeling knee. There is significant improvement with physical function, increased range of motion, decreased pain, stiffness and rehabilitation. Most patients are ambulating without assistance by two weeks.     </p> <p>… this new technology integrates the accuracy of the robot with intelligent surgical instruments, allowing [us] to treat each patient uniquely and with precision. The final result is an excellent outcome and a thrilled patient, who now can regain their life and level of activity that they desire. </p> <p><strong><em>BM:</em></strong><em> Are all patients with arthritis candidates for this procedure? </em></p> <p><strong>MG:</strong> Patients who have degenerative arthritis that is primarily localized to one region of the knee are excellent candidates for the Makoplasty procedure. If the arthritic condition is diffuse and throughout the entire knee, then conventional total joint replacement surgery is the best option. The percentage of patients with knee arthritis that can benefit from this new technology is greater than fifty percent.</p> <p><strong><em>BM:</em></strong><em> How were you trained in this procedure? </em></p> <p><strong>MG:</strong> I have been practicing orthopaedic surgery in Boca Raton and Delray Beach for 24 years, after completing my residency and fellowship training in knee reconstruction. I have performed conventional total joint replacement surgery throughout my career. To gain appropriate skills for robotic technology, I performed simulated surgery on cadaver specimens, attended educational courses and operated with surgeons previously trained in the procedure.</p> <p><strong><em>BM:</em></strong><em> What results are you finding with your patients? </em></p> <p><strong>MG:</strong> The results with the Makoplasty procedure are quite dramatic. Patients are routinely in the hospital for a one or two night stay, compared to three nights [after the traditional approach]. There is a significant decrease in pain medication required, as well as a rapid return to ambulation, progressing to normal function and return to sport activities.  </p> <p><strong><em>BM:</em></strong><em> Does this procedure take the place of total joint replacement or do patients require additional surgery in the future? </em></p> <p><strong>MG</strong>: The robotic arm-assisted technology creates a precise placement of the resurfaced components in only the diseased portion of the joint, resulting in a knee that feels and functions naturally.  If the components are not perfectly aligned, then they tend to wear out faster resulting in the need for a second surgery.</p> <p>For more on Makoplasty, go online to <a href="">West Boca Medical Center</a> or call 866/904-9262. </p>Lisette HiltonWed, 01 Apr 2015 06:00:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautySavoring an event and a town that does it right<p><img alt="" height="727" src="/site_media/uploads/11050823_10152849662022695_2543315322553826377_n.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Last night was our seventh annual Savor the Avenue in Delray Beach —and it was spectacular—1,200 people at a five-block long dining table sampling food from Delray’s best restaurants. The weather was cool and spring-like and sparkling, and the tables were decorated to the nines. There was music, there was wine, there were new friends and old friends—all sharing a dinner that drifted into twilight, then that deep blue darkness that always comes up at the beach.</p> <p>Most people didn’t know that $3 of each reservation was donated to Delray’s Campaign for Grade Level Reading, to assist in funding books and tutoring programs. (More 45 percent of the children in Delray Beach do not read on a grade level in third grade.) Maybe they didn’t know how hard all the people worked behind the scenes, the DDA stars, the <em>Delray</em> magazine staff, all the city workers. Not to mention the chefs, who outdid themselves. I got to have dinner at 50 Ocean, which went all out decorating its tables, then fed us like we were the sultans of Brunei—lobster, a steaming seafood pot of clams and mussels and crab legs and shrimp, a shrimp pot pie, a “truffle garden” for dessert. Chef Blake Malatesta came out to say hello afterward (he got hearty applause) and when we told him he had gone overboard, he said he wouldn’t have considered doing anything less.</p> <p>That’s the spirit of this event. You want to put the world’s longest dining table down the center of Atlantic Avenue? With 19 different restaurants? 1,200 diners? Hand-crafted cocktails? No problem. You want to have a champagne toast from the top of a cherry picker? Check. You want music and fine wines and gourmet dining? Easy.</p> <p>That’s what makes Delray a great town. It doesn’t know it can’t do these things; it just does them.</p> <p>Thanks to all for another great event.</p>Marie SpeedTue, 31 Mar 2015 10:45:00 +0000 BeachFAU Plays Legislative Waiting Game<p><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/fau.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The Florida House and Senate are billions apart on their budget halfway through the legislative session, which could be bad for Florida Atlantic University.</p> <p>FAU’s latest big deal is a biotech-oriented program with Scripps Florida and the Max Planck Florida Institute at the Jupiter campus that also is home to the two research facilities. Before the Legislature is a request from FAU for $29 million that would finance a building on the Jupiter campus. Though FAU President John Kelly announced the program a day before the Legislature convened on March 3, FAU had submitted the request last October to the Florida Board of Governors. The board oversees the State University System, and each year decides which construction priorities will go to the Legislature.</p> <p>According to FAU, the university is recruiting the first students for the program based on enrollment in the fall of 2016. Being able to tell those students that FAU has secured money for the building would seem to be a recruiting tool. A spokesman, though, says FAU intends to proceed no matter what happens in Tallahassee.</p> <p>“The building is just one component of a growing campus,” the university said in a statement responding to my questions. FAU counts 1,500 students in Jupiter. “At our current rate of expansion, we will soon fully occupy both of our current research buildings. ... Of course, this new venture will quickly and significantly increased the student population on our Jupiter campus. Naturally, the new facility will allow us to better accommodate increased activities in Jupiter while providing our students with a new state-of-the-art research and training facility.”</p> <p>You can presume that this money is what Kelly had in mind when he said FAU needs “speeded-up” money from Tallahassee, not new money. The $29 million is a capital budget request, but the university also wants additional operating money “to accelerate the implementation of this new collaboration.” FAU would use the money to hire graduate assistants and tech staffers.</p> <p>Though Florida’s economy continues to improve – more about that later in this post – the budget differences between the House and Senate are profound, and the jockeying could affect every request for money.</p> <p>The difference is over health care. The Senate has included $2.8 billion for expansion of Medicare, though Republican leaders would call it something other than expansion of Medicare, given the enduring politics over the federal health care law. The Senate has included another $2 billion for extension of the Low Income Pool that provides health coverage to the working poor. The House has included neither item in its budget, meaning that the two chambers are roughly $5 billion apart.</p> <p>Since the Low Income Pool money is for the same people whom Medicaid expansion would cover, the Senate’s budget is both redundant and optimistic. The Low Income Pool money is set to expire, because the assumption by the Obama administration has been that since the federal government is offering to pay 100 percent for the first three years and 90 percent after that, by now all states would have expanded Medicare. Florida has not, and House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, says he remains opposed.</p> <p>Even the hardest positions change, however, and Republican-friendly business groups are pushing hard for Medicaid expansion – also without calling it Medicaid expansion. So lots of money could get moved around. Though FAU’s building is a capital budget item – from the fund for university construction projects – legislators see one big pot of money.</p> <p>Regardless of how the budget battle comes out, FAU said in its statement that “the university will move forward with the (Scripps-Max Planck) program, though the timeline may vary accordingly.” Given Kelly’s well-known impatience, he would dislike any variance in the timeline, which means that the pressure is on FAU’s lobbyists and the Palm Beach County legislative delegation.</p> <p>******</p> <p>Last week, I reported on the Board of Governors’ two appointments to the FAU Board of Trustees. There are 13 trustees, six appointed by the governor and five appointed by the Board of Governors. The two other spots go to the presidents of the Faculty Senate and student government, who are Ronald Nyhan and Michael Cepeda.</p> <p>At the most racially and ethnically diverse of Florida’s public universities, there is just one woman among the 11 appointed trustees and no African-Americans or Hispanics.</p> <p>*******</p> <p>Boca Raton has pushed back the date of a very important public meeting.</p> <p>The topic is the city’s Interim Design Guidelines for downtown projects. The Mark was the first project approved under the guidelines, and there is general agreement among city council members and residents that the guidelines did not produce the sort of stylish, compatible look that was envisioned when the city adopted the guidelines. The Mark itself is separate from the coming Hyatt Place Hotel, on the same property. Most people are pleased with the hotel design.</p> <p>A workshop had been scheduled for Thursday at the Boca Raton Community Center. Instead, it will be held on April 29 from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the council chambers.</p> <p>******</p> <p>When I reported last week on the projected savings to Boca Raton from the city’s proposed pension deals with the police and fire unions, I said the police contract ends the use of overtime in calculating pension benefits. In fact, that applies only to new hires.</p> <p>That could be one reason why the savings over 30 years from the police contract are estimated at roughly $43.8 million compared to about $49 million for the firefighters contract. No firefighter is allowed to use overtime toward his or her pension benefits.</p> <p>******</p> <p>A neighborhood parking problem has gotten really bad when the neighbors are willing to pay if that will help to make things better.</p> <p>At tonight’s meeting, the Delray Beach City Commission likely will approve a plan for permit parking in the Marina Historic District, bordered by East Atlantic Avenue, the Intracoastal Waterway, Southeast Third Street and Northeast Seventh Avenue. As the name implies, it is the area clustered around the city-owned marina, which allows people to live on their boats.</p> <p>The city has offered a parking permit program for marina users since 2013. Because of the marina and all the nightlife on East Atlantic, street parking through the area is rampant, so residents of the Marina Historic District want their program. The memo from City Manager Don Cooper, who recommends approval, notes the “various challenges the neighborhood has experienced.” City Commissioner Shelly Petrolia puts it less delicately: “Drunken customers staggering loud and obnoxious to cars at 1 a.m. is enough to be considered a problem by anyone’s definition.”</p> <p>Residents could pay $60 a year for one permanent permit and another that would be transferrable from one vehicle to another. Other permits, aimed at short-term renters, would last for up to 13 weeks. Marina residents could buy their own passes.</p> <p>The program, however it may help, is more evidence that Delray Beach is far from a citywide plan for parking.</p> <p>******</p> <p>Recent economic reports about Florida contain information both optimistic and interesting.</p> <p>The state added almost 20,000 jobs in February, and for three years employment growth has been roughly 50 percent above the national average. The improvement has touched all major industries, especially construction. In addition to the usual residential and the typical commercial projects, Wells Fargo reports an increase in heavy construction, meaning industrial and infrastructure. Florida could use a statewide program on roads and bridges, but airport and seaport expansion remains strong.</p> <p>Construction hiring is up 9 percent from a year ago, but it amounts to just 5.2 percent of Florida’s job base. That’s down from a historic average of 6.5 percent. It hit 8.7 percent during the real estate bubble, but that number was artificially high, since so many houses were being built to flip, not to live in.</p> <p>Interestingly, Wells Fargo reports that Brazil has supplanted Canada as Florida’s largest trading partner. Also interestingly, hiring in hotel and motel employment has lagged even as it steams along in other parts of the hospitality and leisure industry. Researchers speculate that it’s the effect of websites like Airbnb. Tourists are coming and spending money, but not all are staying in hotels.</p> <p>Finally, there are warnings of a labor shortage for skilled construction subcontractors. If that’s true, even with construction not in high gear, it’s an issue for educators and business groups.</p> <p>******</p> <p>At my Camino Lakes neighborhood picnic Saturday afternoon, the Boca Raton City Council could have held a meeting in the sunshine, even if it wouldn’t have met the strict Sunshine Law standard for public meetings.</p> <p>Mayor Susan Haynie attended, as did council members Scott Singer and Robert Weinroth. Jeremy Rodgers came, and he doesn’t take office until today. I mention this because almost all of them had been at other gatherings on what for most in Boca was a day off. For local elected officials who take their job seriously, though, there aren’t many days off, even if those officials technically are classified as part-timers.</p> <p>You can disagree with how council members or commissioners vote, but you must respect those who get out in the community and put in the time to read all the reports and attend all the meetings. With the mayor making $9,000 and the council members $7,200, no one runs for the city council to get rich.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 31 Mar 2015 07:09:00 +0000 WatchCommunityNewsOpinionsBrunching and Lunching on Easter Sunday<p><img alt="" height="252" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/easter-bunny-1.jpg" width="200"></p> <p>Take the day (that would be Sunday, April 5) off from cooking and let these local restaurants do all the work for you...</p> <p><strong>The Addison </strong>(<em>2 E. Camino Real, Boca Raton, 561/372-0568</em>) is offering an extensive prix fixe brunch on Sunday, April 5, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Along with unlimited mimosas and bellinis will be assorted pastries; a raw bar; made-to-order omelet station; ham, turkey and beef carving stations; and an array of desserts. Cost is $89.95 for adults and $49.99 for kiddies age 12 and under.</p> <p>Boca’s <strong>Waterstone Resort</strong> (<em>999 E. Camino Real, 561/368-9500</em>) is doing brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. For $69 for adults and $30 for children you’ll get complimentary mimosas and champagne, plus all manner of breakfast dishes (including omelets and blinzes); salmon, lamb chops and ham; a salad and bread station; and lots of desserts.</p> <p>At <strong>Atlantic Grille</strong> (<em>1000 E. Atlantic Ave., 561/665-4900</em>) at the Seagate Hotel in downtown Delray they’ll be dishing up their regular brunch and dinner menus, along with several specials. Think apricot and ginger-glazed ham, grilled sea bass with couscous salad and spinach, strawberry and warm goat cheese salad. Live entertainment from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. too.</p> <p>For something a little different, try brunch at <strong>Cabo Flats</strong> (<em>14851 Lyons Rd., 561/499-0378</em>)  in the Delray Marketplace. From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. you can wash down unlimited mimosas and bloody marys and nosh on a la carte dishes ranging from french toast stuffed with mascarpone and bananas to huevos rancheros to eggs and omelets cooked any way you like.</p> <p>Further north, at <strong>Spoto’s Oyster Bar</strong> (<em>4560 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens, 561/776-9448</em>) both lunch/brunch and dinner are on the Easter menu. A la carte specials include lobster and brie omelets and crabcakes Benedict, while dinner dishes include herb-crusted lamb with mushroom risotto. Fresh cold-water oysters too.</p> <p><strong>3800 Ocean</strong> (<em>3800 N. Ocean Dr., 561/340-1795</em>) at the Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort is going all out with prix fixe breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. The breakfast buffet runs from 8 to 11 a.m. and costs $28 for adults and $14 for kids. Lunch/brunch is from noon to 3 p.m. and will set you back $55 for adults and $16 for the little ones. And dinner is served from 5 to 10 p.m. for $65 for adults and $18 for children under 12.</p> <p>And for a healthy alternative, check out <strong>Farmer's Table</strong>, which will be hosting a Sunday brunch as well. Call 561/417-5836 for more info.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 31 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsThe Week Ahead: March 31 to April 6<p>TUESDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="325" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/critchley.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Jay Critchley</strong></p> <p>Where: FAU’s Performing Arts Building, room 101</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.<br> Cost: Free</p> <p>Contact: 561/297-2661, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For provocative Massachusetts-based artist Jay Critchley, the world is his canvas. Pre-demolition roadside motels, septic tanks, the Provincetown Harbor and his own backyard are just a few of the venues that provided fodder for his site-specific artworks, most of them addressing urgent environmental concerns, from nuclear power to the car culture to the mass production (and then mass waste) of Christmas trees. His art often includes fake or repurposed corporate stickers, pamphlets, postcards and magazines promoting invented corporations, and his latest artistic mission targets Florida’s own controversial governor: Following Gov. Scott’s refusal to allow the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to use the term “climate change,” Critchley has launched a petition to have the phrase changed to “Mobil warming.” He will surely discuss this effort and more at his special FAU lecture, title “Don’t Be Crude: Art and the Energy Grid,” a year in advance of a full Critchley exhibition at FAU’s University Galleries.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/leno.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: “Concert for the Children” with Jay Leno</strong></p> <p>Where: Akoya Amphitheatre at Boca West Country Club, 20583 Boca West Drive, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $150</p> <p>Contact: 561/488-6980, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For more than 20 years, Jay Leno was the most affable voice on late-night TV, as popular and populist as David Letterman was clubby and esoteric. And during this time, the big-chinned, distinctively voiced “Tonight Show” host frequently dominated the late-night ratings, as well as the next morning’s water-cooler chat. Since retiring from television, he’s been able to devote more time to the passions he had cultivated before becoming a nationwide darling: cars and standup. And seeing his comedy act is a reminder that he’s even funnier outside the inherent restrictions of TV. He’s also another prominent “get” for this annual fundraiser for the Boca West Foundation, which last year hosted Diana Ross for a memorable concert. The Atlantic City Boys, a tribute to ‘60s pop and rock, will open the show, with funds benefiting at-risk children.</p> <p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bigsean3.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p><strong>What: Freakers Ball</strong></p> <p>Where: Student Union Outdoor Stage at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $40 ($5 for FAU students)</p> <p>Contact: 800/564-9539, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>For hip-hop fans, it’s a good time to be an FAU student, with the university’s annual Freakers Ball showcasing national rap acts for an entry fee of virtually nothing. The rest of us have to throw a few shekels at the university, but the price is still a bargain compared to most arena shows. Headliner Big Sean, an underground cult figure recognized for his mixtapes in the late 2000s, emerged with his appropriately titled debut “Finally Famous” in 2011. The album featured contributions from Kanye West, Pharrell and John Legend and set him on a path to superstardrom; his latest album “Dark Sky Paradise” debuted at No. 1. Legendary English rapper Slick Rick, known for bringing novelistic lyricism to hip-hop, will open the show, along with the multitalented Doug E. Fresh, recognized as the pioneer of 20<sup>th</sup> century beatboxing.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cesarmillan.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Cesar Millan</strong></p> <p>Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25-$100</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-7469, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Chances are, Cesar Millan probably knows your dog better than your dog knows itself. The world’s most famous dog whisperer is a self-taught canine guru whose best-selling manuals have sold more than 2 million copies across 15 countries. His live shows will hope to prove that he can be just as compelling without the presence of anxious, erratic, soon-to-be-tamed four-legged friends. Millan, who has fought with issues of divorce, depression and attempted suicide in recent years, will address his values, principles and methods in conversations that have been described as more spontaneous than his rigidly formatted TV show. And perhaps you can even pick up some of his exclusive products, like the Funny Muzzle and Cesar’s Dog Backpack.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="342" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/alice-herz-sommer1_2832835c.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “Memory and Memorial: Music of the Holocaust”</strong></p> <p>Where: University Theater at FAU, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $15</p> <p>Contact: 800/564-9539, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>FAU’s busy and eclectic week of events continues Thursday with a program that promises to be inspiring, heart-swelling and probably a little tear-jerking. The concert pays tribute to the Czech-born Alice Herz-Sommer, who, when she died in 2014, was the world’s oldest known Holocaust survivor, at age 110. When the Nazis invaded Czechoslovakia, Sommer stayed behind to care for her ailing mother, who was murdered in a concentration camp; Sommer, in turn, was herded to the Theresienstadt camp, where her mastery of classical piano kept her alive: She performed more than 100 concerts for the prisoners and guards. This program will feature works from Sommer’s oeuvre, written by composers such as Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Władysław Szpilman and Earnest Bloch. Pianist Heather Coleman, violinist Michael Klotz and cellist Jason Callowy will perform.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="344" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/marfa-girl.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Marfa Girl”</strong></p> <p>Where: Cinema Paradiso, 503 S.E. Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7 and 9:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $6-$10</p> <p>Contact: 954/525-3456, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>More evidence that Cinema Paradiso’s programming is getting a bit edgier than it used to be—thanks in no small part to hiring Robert Rosenberg, formerly of the Coral Gables Art Cinema—is provided in the form of “Marfa Girl,” the latest polarization teensploitation flick from Larry Clark. Already earning comparisons to Clark’s early work—the docudramatic “Kids” and its prescient follow-up “Bully”—“Marfa Girl” is set in the titular Texas town, where an aimless 16-year-old (there’s no other kind in Clark’s universe) drifts through his life while maintaining relationships with his girlfriend, his teacher, a local artist and a lascivious Border Patrol officer. It’s Clark’s first feature film in 10 years but seems to pick up where his others left off, adopting their frankness regarding sexuality. Cinema Paradiso warns that the movie contains “highly charged sexual scenes, nudity, hard language and violence.” Viewer discretion, as they say, is advised.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="390" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/smellslikegrunge.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “Legacy: A Kurt Cobain Tribute Concert”</strong></p> <p>Where: Respectable Street, 518 Clematis St., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 10 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $5</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Here’s a fact that will make you feel old: Kurt Cobain died 21 years ago this weekend! For Nirvana fans, April 5 and the days around it are always a bit melancholy, but there’s no better way to mourn Cobain’s death anniversary than by celebrating it—which in this case means knocking back a craft beer and rocking out to Smells Like Grunge, our area’s pitch-perfect Nirvana tribute act. This trio specializes in Nirvana’s B-sides and deep cuts in addition to its hits, often reviving Nirvana songs you probably forgot Kurt, Dave and Krist ever recorded. Close your eyes, and you’ll think you’re being transported back to 1992. The night also includes a performance by the “Anarchy Cheerleaders,” presumably paying homage to Nirvana’s iconic “Smells Like Teen Spirit” video.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="430" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/1503_women_playing_hamlet.jpg" width="375"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Women Playing Hamlet”</strong></p> <p>Where: New Theatre at South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center</p> <p>When: 8:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $26-$31</p> <p>Contact: 786/573-5300, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Revisionist versions of Shakespeare plays set in foreign countries, deserted islands and even outer space are fairly common in the hands of imaginative directors. But William Missouri Downs’ “Women Playing Hamlet” is something else entirely—a revisionist play about a Shakespearean play, in this case following the travails of a woman cast as Hamlet in an upcoming production of the iconic play. Just as she wrestles with how best to embody this timeless archetype, Downs also plays with concepts of gender in casting: “Women Playing Hamlet” features four women in 20 parts, including male parts, from pompous humanities professors to Freudian psychiatrists to, apparently, Patrick Stewart. Part of this year’s National New Play Network, this “Rolling World Premiere” will be staged by New Theatre just weeks after its first-ever production, in Kansas City. It runs through April 26.</p>John ThomasonMon, 30 Mar 2015 18:23:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsSaltwater Brewery Mass Confusion Festival<p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/saltwater_backbar_taplist.jpg" width="490"></p> <p dir="ltr">“Don’t Get Confused” by the name. This beer festival is all about Saltwater Brewery’s most popular Belgian Tripel.</p> <p>On April 25, from noon to 11 p.m., the amber brew will be taken to a new level.  “Mass Confusion” will ensue, as more than 15 different flavor treatments will make this beer taste like something you can’t quite put your finger on.</p> <p>The street will shut down for live reggae and blues-rock music from T-Wave, Shorty the Giant, and The People Upstairs. Food will also be available from Tip-a-Roo, Out of Many, and It’s a Cubano B trucks.</p> <p>Several other local breweries will feature craft ales tap. A formal list will be announced before the festival.</p> <p>For more information call 561/865-5373 head to the brewery at <em>701 W Atlantic Ave, Delray Beach</em>.</p>Annie PizzutelliMon, 30 Mar 2015 11:49:00 +0000 BeachUpcoming EventsSmall Bites: Openings and Closings<p><img alt="" height="289" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/caffemartier.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Pictured: Salad at Cafe Martier</em></p> <p>It’s a new and improved and much larger <a href="" target="_blank">Caffe Martier</a> (<em>411 E. Atlantic Ave., 561/450-6169</em>) with the five-year-old eatery’s recent expansion into the next-door space once home to Gol! churrascuria. Along with the dramatic increase in space and style (think bistro tables, a bar and fountain under a towering pitched ceiling), comes live jazz several nights a week, a juice bar and dinner menu with dishes like pecan-crusted tilapia with asparagus and butternut squash and chicken francaise with asparagus and roasted potatoes.</p> <p>The local brewing scene took a big step forward with the debut over the weekend of <a href="">Barrel of Monks</a> (<em>1141 S. Rogers Circle, 561/510-1253</em>) in Boca Raton. The labor of love of a trio of Belgian ale fanatics, BofM will brew (and sell) only Belgian-style ales from a facility that’s a awful lot nicer than the funkier digs of other area brewpubs. If you want to check ‘em out, they’re open Wednesday through Friday from 4 to 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 2 to 9 p.m.</p> <p>Well, that didn’t take long. . . The disappearance of <strong>100 Montaditos</strong> from CityPlace, that is. It seems the Florida branch of the Spanish-based company has filed for bankruptcy, halting ambitious expansion plans and shuttering several of the company’s 17 Florida outlets. Also defunct is <strong>Garage VV</strong>, an eclectic eatery in West Palm’s burgeoning Northwood neightborhood. Good word of mouth and an enviable pedigree—the restaurant was part of the Little Moir restaurant group—apparently weren’t enough to keep the doors open. Nobody ever said the restaurant business was easy.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 30 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsFashion Forward: New Stores and Shopping for a Cause<p><img alt="" height="271" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/alex_ani.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>Alex and Ani Grand Opening</strong></p> <p><strong></strong>Las Olas will be channeling positive energy on April 2 at the launch of Alex and Ani’s newest location (<em>1012 E. Las Olas Blvd</em>). Enjoy champagne, appetizers, doorbuster sales and giveaways from 6 to 8 p.m. The first 25 people to RVSP at <a href=""></a> will also receive a complementary gift.</p> <p><strong>Pop-Up Shop</strong></p> <p>Get a little shopping in with brunch and polo this Sunday, March 28, at the International Polo Club Palm Beach (<em>3667 120<sup>th</sup> Ave, Wellington</em>).  ESCADA will host an exclusive Pop Up Fashion Shop poolside at the IPC Clubhouse. A portion of the proceeds will benefit All For One Pet Rescue</p> <p><strong>Shop &amp; Share</strong><strong> </strong></p> <p>Shop for a cause at Sequin in Delray Beach (<em>445 E Atlantic Ave.</em>) On Saturday, March 28, the store will be hosting an appetizer and prosecco night, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Everglades Angels Dog Rescue.  All day long rescued dogs will be at the store ready to be adopted. </p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 27 Mar 2015 12:59:00 +0000 NewsSwank Farm goes Hollywood (almost!)<p><img alt="" height="342" src="/site_media/uploads/movie.jpg" width="342"></p> <p>Just when we thought Swank Farm’s Darrin and Jodi Swank couldn’t get any cooler, here they are starring in a movie. A movie about them. Amateur filmmaker and farm supporter Judith Olney followed the couple around for a year and according to Jodi, filmed “our ups and downs, our struggles and parties—a little bit of everything.” And, she says, when she saw the finished film at a private showing, she was “blown away.”</p> <p>The Swanks are owners of Swank Farm, purveyor of hydroponic designer veggies to high-end restaurants and CSA subscribers, but best known for their Swank Table Sunday dinners during season out at the farm, when top area chefs converge to craft sumptuous farm-to-table dinners.</p> <p>Olney’s film made it into the Palm Beach International Film Festival, and will be screened this Sunday and Monday nights at the Muvico at CityPlace. The Sunday, March 29 screening is at 5:15 p.m. and the Monday, March 30 screening is at 5:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased through the International Film Festival or at the theater.</p> <p>Here’s what the description of the movie says:</p> <p>“After losing jobs in the post-9/11 recession, Jodi and Darrin Swank started new lives as passionate, pioneering, hydroponic farmers in Palm Beach County. Through hurricanes, near-bankruptcy, the challenges of Florida farming, and life in a trailer home with three growing children, they have emerged as major suppliers of fresh produce to area restaurants and hosts of legendary fundraising affairs—the legendary “Swank Table” events. A lesson in the rewards of giving back to the community.”</p> <p>So we’ll see you there! Wonder if the popcorn will be farm to table...</p>Marie SpeedFri, 27 Mar 2015 10:41:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesUpcoming EventsA Palm Beach Film Festival Top 10<p>It’s been 20 years since the Palm Beach International Film Festival launched its premiere event, and in celebration of this landmark anniversary, executive director Randi Emerman is bringing a knockout lineup of premieres to South Florida, along with parties, galas and appearances by celebs including Tom Arnold and “Boyhood” star Ellar Coltrane. </p> <p>It’s a lot to take in, but we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 don’t-miss films, in increasing order of excitement. The films run from tonight through April 2; for a full schedule of screenings and events, visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="204" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/michael_clarke_duncan_29840.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>10. Michael Clarke Duncan has been dead for three years, but through the magic of movies (and the vagaries of release dates), the affable actor with the infectious smile and teddy-bear heft is back on the big screen in <strong>“The Challenger” </strong>(6:30 p.m. March 28 at Cinemark Parisian at CityPlace), an inspirational drama enjoying its world premiere at PBIFF. He plays a boxing trainer who instructs a poor auto mechanic to punch his way out of poverty.</p> <p>9. If you’re of a certain political bent—the tree-hugging leftie kind—then you need no introduction to the work of John Fugelsang, the comedian, actor and liberal commentator who previously hosted a nightly program on Current TV. When that gig expired, Fugelsang hit the asphalt for an ambitious project: to retrace the steps of Alexis de Tocqueville’s landmark tome <em>Democracy in America</em> to discover if the American dream is still alive. The result is the unique docu-road movie <strong>“Dream On”</strong> (4:15 p.m. April 2 at Cinemark Palace in Boca).</p> <p>8. The “Swank Table” fundraising dinners at Loxahatchee’s own Swank Farms have become legendary foodie events, and are much beloved by the staff here at Boca Raton. But they didn’t emerge from a cooking vacuum: They are the result of years of hard work from the farm’s passionate founders, Jodi and Darrin Swank, who went from jobless victims of the post-9-11 recession to arguably our region’s most powerful voice for hydroponic, sustainable farming. As it should be, the Palm Beach Film Festival will present the world premiere of their story, in the hour-long documentary <strong>“Swank Farm”</strong> (5:30 p.m. May 30 at Parisian at CityPlace).</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screenshot-2014-01-29-at-4.38.22-pm.png" width="490"></p> <p>7. Long relegated to menial roles in supbar pictures, Malcolm McDowell is featured in one of his meatiest parts in years in <strong>“Bereave” </strong>(5:45 p.m. March 29 at Palace). He plays a terminally ill, inevitably prickly man who is resigned to die alone, even if it means disappearing on his wife (Jane Seymour) on their anniversary. Crime and sex loom in the shadows of this mystery, which is pitched as a dark comedy—even though scant laughs accompany its broodingly effective trailer.</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/rabino-the-lost-key.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>6. Talk about an unexpected discovery: When Ricardo Adler, a former tech CEO in Palo Alto, found himself navigating a traumatic divorce, the last person he thought to seek advice from was a rabbi. But it turns out Rabbi Manis Friedman is a sexologist as much as a holy man, and his knowledge of the Kabbalah’s ancient secrets has saved couples on the brink of an intimacy collapse. Adler’s debut feature as a director, <strong>“The Lost Key”</strong> (7 p.m. March 31 at Palace), explores this most unusual of Jewish leaders, in a therapeutic film that has been seven years in the making.</p> <p>5. Good thrillers are hard to come by, to say nothing of good horror films. But <strong>“The Red Robin” </strong>(8:15 p.m. March 29 at Palace) appears to achieve both of these distinctions, making it stand out in a festival heavy with comedies, period dramas and inspirational narratives. This movie, by contrast, plumbs deeply into a shameful project in American history: The government’s notorious MK Ultra experiments into mind control, which return to haunt a high-profile psychiatrist (Judd Hirsch) in his twilight years.</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/while-were-young.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>4. The Festival scored a doozy for its closing-night film: The latest piercing comedy from indie darling Noah Baumbach. <strong>“While We’re Young”</strong> (7 p.m. April 2 at Palace) offers an intelligent new vehicle for Ben Stiller, an actor never better than in Baumbach’s “Greenberg,” and Noami Watts as a couple receding into middle age who attempt to recapture their youth by befriending a collegiate couple. See it at the festival first, before it opens in our region April 10.</p> <p>3. Remember “The Sessions,” the masterful 2012 dramedy with Helen Hunt as a “sex surrogate” for a man in an iron lung? The PBIFF’s French comedy <strong>“Indesirables”</strong> (8:30 p.m. March 27 at Parisian at CityPlace) treads similar thematic ground, following a young male nurse who, after losing his job, discovers a new calling as a sex surrogate for the disabled. Seemingly more graphic in its depictions of sex than “The Sessions,” this provocative film shows that sex isn’t black-and-white—even if this monochrome movie is.</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cut-bank-liam-hemsworth-teresa-palmer.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>2. Fans of the Coen Brothers and vintage David Lynch don’t need to wait until “Fargo” returns for its second season, or for “Twin Peaks” to make its own vaunted TV encore next year. The offbeat thriller <strong>“Cut Bank”</strong> (6:45 p.m. March 29 at Parisian at CityPlace), about a mysterious crime in a tiny, freezing Montana town with a police force unaccustomed to brutaity, will fit that niche quite nicely. The supporting cast is a who’s who of splendid character actors from yesterday and today, including Billy Bob Thornton, Bruce Dern, Michael Stuhlberg and John Malkovich.</p> <p><img alt="" height="216" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/chicago.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>1. “I’m responsible for hundreds of people on the ground in Syria.” This is not a statement you’d expect to hear from a 19-year-college freshman in Chicago, but it’s the reality for Ala’a, an American Muslim who has, for years, been fomenting revolution in this war-torn Middle Eastern country using nothing but the social media tools the rest of us employ for funny cat videos and snarky memes: Facebook, Twitter and Skype. She’s received both death threats and praise for her bravery and boldness, and the documentary<strong> “#chicagogirl”</strong> (6:45 p.m. March 30 at Palace) provides Ala’a a much-needed spotlight and offers an invigorating study in the positive ramifications of social media.</p>John ThomasonFri, 27 Mar 2015 09:00:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesDon&#39;t Pass Up Passover Meals<p><img alt="" height="262" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/matzahballs.jpg" width="350"></p> <p>If you’re hungry for a traditional Passover meal without the traditional Passover work, a pair of Burt Rapoport’s Delray Beach eateries have your back.</p> <p><strong>Henry’s</strong> (<em>16850 Jog Road, 561/638-1949</em>) is offering both its annual four-course Passover dinner at the restaurant, as well as the a la carte Passover To Go. The $40 prix fixe dinner features a Sedar plate and choice of appetizers, entrees and desserts, dishes ranging from gefilte fish and chopped chicken liver to roasted half chicken and brisket to flourless chocolate torte and strawberry shortcake. The Passover To Go menu features those dishes and more, including matzo ball soup and latkes. To Go meals must be ordered by 2 p.m. on Tuesday, March 31. Call 561/826-1791. Pickup is on Friday, April 3, before 3 p.m.</p> <p>Diners at <strong>Burt &amp; Max’s</strong> (<em>9089 W. Atlantic Ave., 561/638-6380</em>) in the Delray Marketplace can dig into a range of a la carte Passover dishes on Friday, April 3 and Saturday, April 4. Think matzo ball soup, chicken liver, slow-braised brisket, maple-glazed salmon, apple-raspberry crisp and others. B&amp;M’s regular menu will also be available.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 27 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsStaff Picks: the ultimate movie theater and more<p><strong>Cinemark Palace 20 Premier Club</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="251" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cinemarkpremier.jpg" width="370"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“I know the iPic is fancier with those reclining seats, but nothing beats the Cinemark Palace 20 Premier Club in my book. You get to ride up that steep and endless escalator for starters, and then you get free popcorn, a full bar and a cushy banquette. Still my fave.”</p> <p>3200 Airport Road, Boca Raton // 561/395-1939</p> <p><strong>El Jefe Luchador</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/eljefeluchador.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Picked by David Shuff, Web Department</em></p> <p>“Street-style Mexican food with Wrestler-esqe names from the guys who brought us Charm City Burgers and the Rebel House. Two favorites: the El Mistico quesadilla, Beef barbacoa with a great mole' sauce, and the El Rey taco, fried shrimp and avocado with spicy mayo. Goes great with the real-sugar mexican bottled sodas they sell!”</p> <p>27 S. Federal Highway, Deerfield Beach // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>$2.99 Tuesdays at Fresh Market</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="335" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/299tuesday.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>“Every Tuesday, I thank the food Gods for bestowing me with the gift of $2.99 Tuesday. It’s a Fresh Market weekly special I swear by: ground chuck and chicken breasts for $2.99 a pound. That’s $3 per pound off the regular price of the antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed chicken from one of my favorite specialty grocery stores. (And $2.50 per pound off the ground chuck). Though the sale runs every week, the store does make exceptions on holidays. So make sure to stock up the week before big events like Thanksgiving.”</p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 27 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 contract in, Savor the Avenue raincheck, and more<h3><img alt="" height="183" src="/site_media/uploads/unionimages.jpg" width="276"></h3> <h3>Contract shortfall?</h3> <p>I now have seen the latest—not necessarily final— projections for savings to Boca Raton under the proposed fire and police contracts, and the number has come in low.</p> <p>In December, a statement by the firefighters union announced that the firefighters and police officers had reached agreement on three-year contracts that would be retroactive to last Oct. 1. The unions have been working without a contract. The city declared an impasse last fall after negotiations stalled.</p> <p>The proposed contracts include major changes in the police and fire pension programs. In that December statement, the International Association of Firefighters said the changes would save the city a combined $100 million over 30 years. Contributions from employees and cities fund municipal pension plans. Boca Raton worried that, without changes, the city’s contribution would rise so high as to result in budget cuts or tax increases.</p> <p>According to the city’s actuary, however, the proposed contracts would save $92.8 million in pension costs through 2043—about $49 million from the police and about $43.8 million from fire. The police-fire pension program that now is funded at about 75 percent—a program is considered adequately funded at 80 percent—would be roughly 100 percent funded after 30 years. The timetable for calculating pension plan solvency usually is 30 years.</p> <p>That certainly amounts to reform, but less reform than Boca Raton’s target of $100 million, which is what the firefighters union advertised. One of Mayor Susan Haynie’s main campaign promises last year was major pension reform. In an interview Wednesday, Haynie said City Manager Leif Ahnell “advised the council that the changes would result in $100 million in savings.”</p> <p>Haynie intends to review the actuary’s report and discuss it with Ahnell. “I would like $100 million in savings,” she said. Councilman Robert Weinroth called the nearly 10 percent difference between what “we’ve been hearing” and the new projection “a little disappointing.”</p> <p>I’ve also heard complaints from council members about the release of information related to the police and fire contracts. Approval was supposed to happen at Tuesday’s meeting, but the financial projections didn’t arrive until Monday, and the Fraternal Order of Police hasn’t held a ratification vote. The firefighters union ratified its contract on schedule. A police union representative told me Wednesday that the delay was because of “some wording in the contract.”</p> <p>One big change is that police officers no longer could use overtime to calculate pension benefits. So union members no longer could steer overtime toward officers nearing retirement, giving them a windfall. The firefighters contract would cap annual pension benefits at $100,000 or 90 percent of monthly earnings, whichever is less.</p> <p>But that lifetime benefit would increase 2 percent each year. Police officers and firefighters still would have cost-of-living adjustments to their pensions, something almost no private-sector employee enjoys. And those financial projections are based on the fire-police pension fund investments returning an average of 8 percent a year, after management fees are deducted.</p> <p>The council, not just Haynie, has stressed the need for pension reform. The police-fire program just got its second rating of ‘D’ from the LeRoy Collins Institute at Florida State University. The less-generous program for non-public safety employees got an ‘A.’ Haynie and the new council— which will include Jeremy Rodgers, elected this month to succeed Constance Scott—now must decide if the fire and police contracts rate high with them.</p> <h3>Savor the Avenue rain change</h3> <p>Rain played havoc with the recent Honda Classic at PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens. Delray Beach doesn’t intend to let that happen to Savor the Avenue (a signature event for <em>Boca Raton </em>and <em>Delray Beach</em> magazines).</p> <p>On Wednesday, participating restaurants were notifying those with reservations for tonight’s foodfest on Atlantic Avenue that the event had been postponed until Monday. Rain is forecast for today and Friday, which was the original rainout date.</p> <h3>FAU trustee news</h3> <p>Last week, Florida Atlantic University got one new member of the Board of Trustees and kept another.</p> <p>The Board of Governors, which oversees the 11 state universities, reappointed Anthony Barbar. No surprise there. Barbar had just been kept on as board chairman, no doubt with the certainty of his reappointment.</p> <p>The new member is Dr. Michael Dennis, founding chairman of the Schmidt College of Medicine Advisory Board. He has stayed in that role since the board’s inception four years ago.</p> <p>For the last five years, Dr. Dennis has chaired the Palm Beach County Medical Society’s Future of Medicine Summit. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Dennis, and those summits have helped make Palm Beach County a leader in health care innovation. In an email, Dr. Dennis said “FAU leaders” encouraged him to apply for the trustee post. Good call by them and the Board of Governors.</p> <h3>Price shopping pays off</h3> <p>Speaking of health care, there’s new evidence that serious savings—with no reduction in care—could come from customers just being more engaged.</p> <p>Medicare Part D, the prescription drug plan, has been around for about a decade. If you have coverage or help someone else get it—as I do for my mother-in-law—you know that the Part D website helpfully ranks all plans based on out-of-pocket costs. Each year, during the re-enrollment period, you can update a patient’s list of drugs and see if the same plan works better or if it makes sense to switch.</p> <p>But according to researchers at Columbia and Yale, people don’t make that annual check once enrolled. According to the Brookings Institution, the researchers studied enrollment patterns and prices from 2007 to 2009. They concluded that enrollees paid an average of $536 more than if they had price-shopped. Assured of repeat business, insurers raised prices.</p> <p>Oh, and the researchers also calculate that the failure to shop for cheaper plans costs the government an extra $550 million. Medicare Part D remains one of the most heavily subsidized federal programs.</p> <h3>A reprieve for the Ag Reserve</h3> <p>For now, the Palm Beach County Commission has no appetite for paving over the county’s coastal farm belt.</p> <p>For roughly six hours Tuesday, the commission heard conflicting comments about the Agriculture Reserve Area, which covers 22,000 acres west of the Florida Turnpike between Clint Moore Road and Lantana Road. County staff and environmentalists told the commission that, as Deputy County Administrator Verdenia Baker put it, agriculture is “valuable and viable.” The reserve has everything from horse farms to nurseries to row crops, which include “peppers, cucumbers, squashes (sic), eggplant, lettuce, green beans, tomatoes, okra, cabbage, peas, herbs and niche crops such as organic farming or Asian vegetables.”</p> <p>From the small farmers who want to sell their land for development, commissioners heard that agriculture in the Agricultural Reserve is dead. “A dinosaur,” one called it. Too much competition from elsewhere in Florida and abroad. Too much weather-related trouble in the last decade, from hurricanes to freezes. Too much suburban-type development that brings people who object to pesticide spraying and farm trucks. These critics wore shirts with the words “Forced to Farm” behind jail bars.</p> <p>It’s true that the area’s master plan has allowed some subdivisions, a hospital and some schools. The plan has allowed two centers of commercial development, one of them being Delray Marketplace, which is about as rural as Mizner Park.</p> <p>It’s also true, however, that many farmers in the reserve are doing well. It’s also true that those with the shirts aren’t forced to farm. They could sell their property now. But they want to sell it for more—to the most willing buyer: GL Homes, the major developer in and near the reserve. Allow the higher density that those landowners want, and the commission would set in motion the long-term collapse of agriculture in the Agricultural Reserve.</p> <p>Fortunately, the commission made only minor moves. The staff will look for ways to give small landowners more development rights, but not nearly as many as they want. The staff also will look for ways to promote the unique nature of the reserve and to alert homebuyers that they won’t find West Boca. Commissioner/ex-Boca Mayor Steven Abrams said he heard from people who didn’t understand until after moving in that they were more in farm country than the suburbs.</p> <p>One farmer claimed that the only “real stakeholders” in the debate are the farmers themselves. He’s wrong. Palm Beach County taxpayers spent $150 million on a land-buying program designed to preserve as much farming as possible in the Agricultural Reserve Area. Staff members told the commissioners that the effort has paid off, giving Palm Beach a place unique among Florida’s urban counties. If the commission allowed sprawl to take over, the commission would owe the public a refund.</p> <p>Tuesday’s debate came after a year of buildup. The sense after the meeting was that nothing will happen soon. At this point, that means nothing bad will happen, which makes Tuesday mostly a success.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 26 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityConcert Review: Bleachers at Culture Room<p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bleachersculture1.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>(Photo by Yafi Yair)</em></p> <p>Going into last night’s Bleachers show at the Culture Room, I wondered how a band with a sound as anthemic and arena-ready as theirs would jibe in a room as comparatively small as this one. I last saw the band—a fast-growing side project of frontman Jack Antonoff’s full-time gig in the Top 40 hitmakers fun.—at the Coral Skies Festival in West Palm Beach last October, where it played to a swelling crowd of hundreds on the main stage of the amphitheater, shaking its rafters and exploiting every element of the venue’s superlative sound.</p> <p>So it was no surprise that last night’s concert, which was packed by hungry fans from stage-huggers to wallflowers, felt somewhat constricted, a rock ‘n’ roll tempest in a teapot. There should have been twice as many people watching Bleachers in a room twice this size and in a venue with better sound. But if Antonoff’s mic didn’t always pick up his lyrics with crystal clarity, his legions of fans were more than happy to recite every word.</p> <p>Yes, the cult of Bleachers was in full throng last night, and it was exciting to witness the charged connection between the performers and their audience. One advantage of the smaller venue is the intimacy with which Antonoff could engage with his fans: He possessed a televangelist’s charisma and ability to control a crowd, eliciting applause from its various segments with the infectious enthusiasm of a newly minted president just discovering his powers of persuasion. Toward the end of the set, Antonoff proclaimed, “Fort Lauderdale, you’re the f***in’ best,” and even though he probably says the same on every tour stop, it felt genuine.</p> <p>And what’s true anytime you see Bleachers perform is that the songs on its debut LP “Strange Desire” sound more timeless live, because the band members’ hidden classic-rock grandiosity can more freely mingle with their signature, hook-filled indie-pop. Even on record, it feels like you’ve been listening to these songs for decades, and live, with the added flourishes of E Street Band-style saxophone solos and the occasional elaborate guitar solo, the tunes sound even more vintage.</p> <p>Aside from that weird Yoko Ono track, the group played everything from “Strange Desire,” similar to the Coral Skies set list but with a few surprises: the ethereal “Take Me Away,” which provided a chill reprieve from the pogoing pop anthems; a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way,” which was nice, though nothing a dependable cover band couldn’t accomplish at a good local bar; an acoustic rendition of “Bullet,” from Antonoff’s old act Steel Train; and finally, Tom Petty’s “American Girl,” a classic that felt a bit too déjà vu-ish: A couple years ago, Frank Turner played his own spartan version of that song at the Culture Room, for the same reason: It’s a definitively Floridian rock tune.</p> <p>“I Wanna Get Better” and “Rollercoaster” were, of course, satisfying highlights performed to perfection, but “You’re Still a Mystery” is becoming Bleachers’ trademark song, at least in a live setting. Last night’s version must have been 15 to 20 minutes long, and included a spirited faux-duel between Antonoff and saxman Evan Smith, who re-created Antonoff’s guitar licks, note for note, on his saxophone.</p> <p>There aren’t many more bells and whistles one could extract from “Strange Desire,” an album with six or seven wonderful songs and a few bits of filler; it’s no surprise the set barely clocked in at an hour. With fun. currently on hold, I can’t wait to hear what’s next for Bleachers. After two solid years on the road, it’s high time for some new material—and a venue large enough to contain the sort of thunderous music only two drum kits can provide.</p> <p><strong>SET LIST</strong></p> <p>“Like a River Runs”</p> <p>“Shadow”</p> <p>“Wild Heart”</p> <p>“Wake Me”</p> <p>“Reckless Love”</p> <p>“Take Me Away”</p> <p>“Go Your Own Way” (Fleetwood Mac)</p> <p>“Rollercoaster”</p> <p>“You’re Still a Mystery” </p> <p>ENCORE</p> <p>“Bullet” (Steel Train)</p> <p>“American Girl” (Tom Petty)</p> <p>“Who I Want You to Love”</p> <p>“I Wanna Get Better”</p>John ThomasonWed, 25 Mar 2015 14:06:00 +0000 & EventsMusicNon-GMO Brewery Opens in Boca<p>Breweries are popping up left and right in our area of South Florida – but this one in particular has caught our eye. <a href="" target="_blank">Barrel of Monks</a> <em>(1141 S. Rogers Circle #5, Boca Raton)</em> is brewing up craft beer with absolute no GMOs. All ingredients are imported from Europe, bringing Boca the authentic Belgian beer its founders love.</p> <p><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/barrelofmonks.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The brewery is marking its grand opening on Saturday, March 28, with a big celebration from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event is free, but unilimited beer tickets are being sold for $40 and includes a keepsake glass and all the beer you can drink. There will also be live music, a silent disco, food trucks and more. You can pre-purchase tickets to the event <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p>On top of selling its Boca-brewed beer, Barrel of Monks will also have several guest breweries on tap, including Saltwater Brewery, Funky Buddha and Cigar City.</p> <p>If you can’t possibly wait till then, you’re in luck. Barrel of Monks will be open from 4 to 8 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday, while staff is in training.</p> <p>For more information on the event and the brewery, check <a href="">Barrel of Monks’ Facebook page</a>.</p>Stefanie CaintoWed, 25 Mar 2015 11:45:00 +0000 the Avenue: Date Change<p>If you’ve been watching the weather in fear this week, this will calm your worries. Savor the Avenue has now been switched to Monday, March 30, due to inclement weather.</p> <p><img alt="" height="367" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/savor_rescheduled.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The decision came after the Delray Beach Downtown Development Authority consulted with Steve Weagle and the city staff, making numerous radar checks to find out what date would work best for the outdoor dining event.</p> <p>As of Wednesday at 8:30 a.m., the <a href=";query=boca+raton%2C+fl&amp;GO=GO">forecast for Monday</a> via is partly cloudy with a high of 79 and low of 64. Sounds great to us!</p> <p>We can’t wait for another incredible year of Savor the Avenue. </p>Stefanie CaintoWed, 25 Mar 2015 08:51:00 +0000 BeachExpo West Recap<p><img alt="" height="36" src="/site_media/uploads/greengoddess.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Earlier this month, I had the privilege of attending <a href="" target="_blank">Natural Products Expo West</a> in California. With more than 70,000 attendees and 2,600 exhibitors, there was a lot to take in – and to eat! After all, I did have to taste-test all the latest products to report back to you. In this blog, I’ve rounded up the top five products that are coming to our market.</p> <p><strong>COCOMELS</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="255" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cocomels.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p>I was blown away by the quality, taste and texture of these coconut-based caramels. Usually caramels are made with dairy, which can affect your hormones in a negative way, so I haven’t had this type of candy in a very long time. But I love coconut products, especially because coconut is rich in medium-chain triglycerides that can help boost your metabolism. Raw food angels must have heard my prayers and created this product because it’s absolutely delicious. <em>Note: There are still sugars and calories, so please enjoy in moderation.</em> <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>GORILLY GOODS</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="305" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/himalania_chocolatechiaseeds.png" width="400"></p> <p>This snack “thing,” as Gorilly Goods calls its new product, was my favorite in the health-food category. To understand what its like, picture a packet of broken up pieces of chocolate bark that’s loaded with bananas, raisins, cashews, walnuts, pecans and coconut. Rich chocolate and sweet fruit – sounds delicious already, right? To make it even better, it’s raw, vegan and organic. <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>CASHEW ICE CREAM</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/so-delicious-cashew-milk-ice-cream-2.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Besides chocolate, my favorite food is ice cream. Up until now, I haven’t been fully satisfied with the plant-based ice creams on the market. But Delicious brand changed all that with its cashew-based caramel ice cream. WOW. Incredible. It was rich, smooth and silky, and as its name promises, so delicious! Because cashew is a rather neutral nut, this ice cream has a very similar taste and texture to dairy ice cream. Except it’s 100 percent cholesterol-free and plant-powered. <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>CHOCOLATE-COVERED CHIA SEEDS</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="294" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/himalania_chocolatechiaseeds.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Did you know that chia seeds are rich in anti-inflammatory omega 3’s that can help boost your brainpower? And yes, we are talking about the same chia seeds we used to put inside a Chia Pet. Well, Himalania brand is changing how we look at chia seeds. They’ve figured out a way to cover each teeny-tiny seed in chocolate! They’re so fun to eat and very satisfying. I haven’t seen them in stores yet, but do keep your eye out. Another healthy food made delicious. <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>CHICKEN-LESS POPPERS</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="275" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/beyondmeatpopperslg.jpg" width="489"></strong></p> <p>I’ve been a fan of Beyond Meat for several years, but this time the brand has really outdone itself. Not only did its booth look like a better-for-you McDonald’s, there was also a selection of burgers and chicken-less nuggets. Beyond Meat has all the taste without any antibiotics, hormones or ingredients you can’t pronounce. I can hardly wait until the new crispy Chicken-less Poppers start selling at Whole Foods Market. Meanwhile, do enjoy their Beastly Burgers – they are fabulous with dairy-free Daiya cheese and plant-based bacon. Check out <a href="" target="_blank">this video</a> for a recipe. <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more from the Green Goddess, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-green-goddess/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>About Alina Z.</strong>
</em></p> <p><em>Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida,  Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at, visit Alina’s website at <a href=""></a>, or follow her on Facebook (<a href="/admin/blog/blogpost/10225/"></a>) or Twitter (<a href="">@CoutureFood</a>). The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at <a href="/"></a>.</em></p>Alina Z.Wed, 25 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsTelemedicine service launches in Florida<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Need medical advice now? Here’s some news you don’t want to miss.</p> <p>Local chiropractor and businessman, Lawrence Bentvena, has launched Florida’s first licensed telemedicine consulting service. <a href="">ClickAClinic</a>, which provides HIPAA-compliant, cloud-based video technology, is a telemedicine platform that’s been approved as a clinic in Florida.</p> <p><em>Blogger note: HIPAA stands for the American Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. It represents the rules doctors, hospitals and other providers have to follow to ensure that patient care meets standards for privacy and more.</em></p> <p><em><img alt="" height="399" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/clickaclinic.png" width="490"></em></p> <p>What does the news about ClickAClinic mean to local patients? The potential for lower-cost, more accessible medical care to home-based seniors and others who don’t want to or can’t travel to their doctors’ offices for timely healthcare. In essence, patients use the platform to privately consult with physicians and other health providers.</p> <p>Still, telemedicine doesn’t not always take the place of an in-person visit. It’s an adjunct to medical care. Patients with chronic conditions can use telemedicine to enhance communication with a healthcare provider. Plus, it can come in handy for some people with non-emergency health problems. </p> <p>ClickAClinic’s business model has two components. One is as a care provider that employs doctors and advanced practice nurses. The other is as a platform that local hospitals and healthcare providers, including doctors, advanced practices nurses and therapists, can use to offer telemedicine to their patients.  </p> <p>Licensed by the State of Florida's Agency for Health Care Administration, ClickAClinic features a proprietary video technology to enhance providers’ abilities to make diagnoses or prescribe medications.</p> <p>The venture is self-funded, says Bentvena, a Wellington resident who owns Millennium Treatment Group, a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in Lake Worth. He invested $1.5 million in creating the turnkey HIPAA-compliant telemedicine platform.</p> <p><img alt="" height="387" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/lawrencebentvana.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>In an email interview, I found out what readers, including potential patients and local doctors, need to know about the service. Here are his responses:</p> <p>Boca Mag: When did ClickAClinic provide care to its first patient?</p> <p>Lawrence Bentvena: That began in 2014, after our [Agency for Health Care Administration] license was granted in Florida, although there were doctors using the site as early as 2012.</p> <p>BM: How many patient visits have you had since?</p> <p>LB: I cannot give exact numbers as that is proprietary, but I can say that it is well over 200 completed consultations and that number is growing quite fast.</p> <p>BM: Are ClickAClinic providers physicians (M.D.s)?</p> <p>LB: If ClickAClinic is providing the care, then they must be M.D. physicians, physician assistants or nurse practitioners.</p> <p>BM: Does ClickAClinic accept insurance?</p> <p>LB: Amazingly, yes, we do! We are an out-of-network provider for purposes of our medical facility license here in Florida.</p> <p>BM: What does a typical visit cost, out of pocket? </p> <p>LB: We have a robust fee schedule, which is too broad too mention here, but our basic medical consultation fee currently is $95.</p> <p>BM: Do you need a camera on your computer to use the service?  </p> <p>LB: If you do not have a camera, please call our customer service department at 800-DRCLICK, and we would be happy to advise you on an adequate USB-enabled camera that you can buy online or at Office Depot for less than $25. And we will walk you through the setup and get you up and running in minutes.</p> <p>For more information, click <a href="">here</a> or call 1-800-372-5425.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 25 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyUnion news, ag reserve talks and the ongoing inspector general issue<h3><span>Union contract update</span></h3> <h4><span><img alt="" height="470" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bocapolice.jpg" width="490"></span></h4> <p>At tonight’s meeting, the Boca Raton City Council was supposed to approve contracts with unions representing the city’s police officers and firefighters. At least, that was the plan a month ago.</p> <p>It won’t happen. Though the International Association of Firefighters Local 1560 ratified its contract a few days ago, the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 35 has not ratified. There is a pension item on the agenda, but it’s a minor matter. In a text message sent Monday, Councilman Robert Weinroth said approval of the contracts has been pushed back to April. An executive session of the council to review an actuarial report on the two contracts—a study of how the changes would affect Boca Raton’s long-term finances— had been scheduled for Monday, but it was cancelled. The city didn’t receive that study until late Monday morning from the city’s actuaries in Fort Myers.</p> <p>The late-December news release announcing agreement on the two contracts—after the city declared an impasse with the unions— came from the firefighters. IAFF Local 1560 Vice President Matt Welhaf told me Monday that his union’s ratification was “overwhelming,” and that with regard to protecting Boca Raton’s finances the deal takes “a significant bite of the apple.”</p> <p> According to Welhaf, the city’s contribution to the pension fund would average 18 percent over the next 30 years – the city’s target. “We did what we were asked,” Welhaf said. The report from the Police &amp; Firefighters Pension Board actuary, Welhaf claimed, will show fire pension reductions of $50 million over that 30-year period. The December announcement touted $100 million in pension savings from both contracts.</p> <p>According to the email from the consultants to the city, the 30-year projections that would confirm that $100 million in savings are complete but awaiting peer review. The study shows a decline in city contributions to police and fire pensions of roughly $2 million in the first year. That would be just $60 million over 30 years, but Welhaf says the savings increase dramatically in the third year of the contract. He sent me a 30-year study from the consultants—dated four days earlier than the report that arrived Monday. It shows roughly $94 million in savings over 30 years and leaves the police-fire pension fund 100 percent funded.</p> <p>I will have more about this on Thursday after checking with the actuaries who prepared the report. As for the police union’s failure to ratify, my calls to the union representative were not returned.</p> <h3>Lease proposal in the works</h3> <p>One of the Boca Raton City Council’s top priorities is negotiating a favorable lease for a Houston’s restaurant on the Wildflower Property at Northeast Fifth Avenue and Palmetto Park Road. At Monday’s council workshop, City Manager Leif Ahnell said staff hoped to present a lease proposal to the council by early summer. Ahnell also said the city is seeking a consultant to conduct a traffic study of that intersection and the effect from opening the restaurant.</p> <h3>Ag Reserve talks</h3> <p>There will be no votes today when the Palm Beach County Commission discusses the Agricultural Reserve Area, but we still could learn if the commission seriously wants to keep a unique part of the county unique.</p> <p>For 20 years, the county has tried to keep as much farming as possible in the roughly 21,000 acres between Clint Moore Road and Lantana Road west of the turnpike. The county approved a master plan in 1995. When development still began pushing west as it did west of Boca Raton, voters in 1999 approved $100 million in bonds to buy land. The goal was to keep roughly 60 percent of the 21,000 acres in some kind of agriculture.</p> <p>To a reasonable degree, that has happened, even as the rules have allowed some homes and two commercial centers. For a year, however, owners of smaller farms and nurseries have pushed for changes. They can sell to developers, but there are density limits on their property. They want those limits loosened, claiming that they can’t make money in agriculture. They have formed a political action committee called Forced to Farm. Aiding these landowners has been GL Homes, the biggest developer in and near the reserve.</p> <p>A year ago, the county commission asked for an update, which has led to community meetings and roundtables that mostly have shown, to no one’s surprise, that farmers want a windfall and preservationists want no changes. The first is unacceptable, and the second may be self-defeating.</p> <p>If the goal—as it should be—is to stick with what the public intended 16 years ago, the county should try to offer incentives that would help some of the unhappy farmers. Even that might not satisfy those who wish they had sold their property as part of the bond plan when there was money, but it would get the priorities right.</p> <p>That farmland provides jobs, local produce and water storage. But trying to control development in South Florida can be like trying to lasso the wind.</p> <p><em>The Palm Beach Post</em> reported Sunday on a Senate bill that would allow increased development on 5,000 acres in remote northwest Palm Beach County. GL Homes owns that land. One theory is that GL Homes is pushing the legislation to set up the property as trade bait for a large parcel in the Agricultural Reserve. Such a trade would destroy any chance to preserve farming.</p> <p>There’s much at stake in this debate. We should know today if the county commission intends to surrender or break out the lasso.</p> <h3>Censoring climate change</h3> <p>As news organizations have reported, top administrators at the Florida Department of Environmental Protection ordered staff members never to use the terms “climate change” and “global warming.” Gov. Rick Scott has denied issuing any such order, but former DEP employees have gone public about such censorship occurring in a state already facing the effects of rising seas.</p> <p>There also was evidence last week that Scott’s policy of denial extends beyond the DEP.</p> <p>Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Bryan Koon was testifying before a Florida Senate subcommittee. The topic was federal money to help states issue timely disaster warnings.</p> <p>Sen. Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, was asking Koon about a new Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requirement that states have climate change plans to qualify for federal money. Koon said he understood that FEMA is asking for “language to that effect.”</p> <p>Clemens responded that since the governor is so resistant to the use of “climate change” and global warming,” perhaps Clemens could propose an alternative “atmospheric reemployment.”</p> <p>The crowd cracked up. The governor is known for answering almost every question from a reporter with a talking point about jobs. Koon mostly kept a straight face, acknowledging that the state’s next plan—due in 2018— “will be required to have language discussing that issue.”</p> <p>“What issue is that?” Clemens asked.</p> <p>Dodged Koon, “The issue you mentioned earlier regarding. . .climate.”</p> <p>There was a bigger laugh, and Clemens was done. But the joke is on Florida if cities like Delray Beach and agencies like the South Florida Water Management District and academic institutions like Florida Atlantic University are studying the effect of something that state government pretends isn’t happening.</p> <h3>Inspector general appeal?</h3> <p>Last week, I wrote of the court ruling against 14 cities—Boca Raton and Delray Beach among them—that sued Palm Beach County over paying for the Office of Inspector General. I reported that there is fairly strong sentiment in Delray Beach for withdrawing from the lawsuit, but in Boca I heard only from Councilman Mike Mullaugh. While he supported the lawsuit when it was filed in late 2011, Mullaugh seems disinclined to appeal.</p> <p>I have since heard from Councilman Robert Weinroth. He wrote, “I am personally of the opinion that we should pay up and move forward.” Weinroth has asked City Attorney Diana Grub Frieser for how much Boca’s continued involvement might cost “with the hope of convincing my fellow council members to join me in resolving this.”</p> <p>One of those council members, Scott Singer, told me of his worry that if the lawsuit fails the county would have a precedent to impose any number of costs on cities—so-called “unfunded mandates.” In fact, the cities will have nothing to worry about if the ruling stands.</p> <p>The cities must pay their share of the inspector general’s expenses because voters in every city imposed that requirement in 2010. The county pays only for the expense of overseeing county government.</p> <p>County Attorney Denise Nieman is the other side of the lawsuit from the cities. Nevertheless, she was right when she told me that for Singer’s scenario to come true, there would have be a similar referendum in every city. In the highly unlikely event that the county commission made such an attempt to shift costs, city voters obviously would see the plot for what it was and reject it.</p> <p>Boca Raton and Delray Beach residents understood what they were asking for in 2010—outside oversight. With a new Boca council and a new Delray commission should come new attitudes on carrying out the voters’ will.   </p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 24 Mar 2015 11:37:00 +0000 WatchCommunityHawaiian Gelato Coming to Delray<p>A taste of the tropics from the other side of the country is coming to West Delray with the debut of <a href="" target="_blank">Papalani Gelato</a>, a purveyor of artisan gelato, sorbetto, cookies and breakfast dishes that is expected to set up shop in the Shoppes of Addison Place (<em>16800 Jog Road, Delray Beach</em>) in mid-April.</p> <p><img alt="" height="325" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/papalanigelato.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Look for gelati inspired by the tropical flavors of Hawaii—macadamia nuts, coconuts, mangoes—as well as more traditional flavors, plus gelato cakes and pies, handmade chocolates, coffee drinks and small-batch coffees (including organic coffees from Florida’s Java Planet), fruit sorbets and an array of desserts. Breakfast choices will include buttermilk Belgian waffles, steel-cut oatmeal and an assortment of pastries.</p> <p>Grand opening festivities are planned for May 4 to 8. Papalani Gelato will be open Sunday through Thursday from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.</p> <p>The Delray Papalani will be the first on Florida’s east coast for the Hawaii-based chain, whose two other Florida shops are in the Tampa area. Additional shops are projected to open in other Palm Beach locations and in Broward County.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 24 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsThe Week Ahead: March 24 to 30<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/10473371_587536281365086_1836169084653795137_n.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Bleachers</strong></p> <p>Where: Culture Room, 3045 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $32.10</p> <p>Contact: 954/564-1074, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Jack Antonoff’s day job, at least in the past few years, has been playing guitar for fun., the Top 40 powerhouse behind “Some Nights” and “We Are Young.” But it turns out that while touring the world and playing second fiddle, Antonoff, formerly of the cult band Steel Train, had his own vision for pop glory, which he called Bleachers. The band’s debut album, “Strange Desire,” hit retailers last summer with songs that suggest both the youthful abandon and effortless infectiousness of fun. and, perhaps more endearingly, the synthesized nostalgia of 1980s pop (Antonoff has said that he wanted to evoke the soundtracks of the great John Hughes movies of that period). Anchored by the alt-rock chart-topper “I Wanna Get Better” and the rollicking, arena-ready singles “Shadow” and “Rollercoaster,” Bleachers’ mid-day set at last October’s Coral Skies Festival in West Palm Beach was the toast of the fest. Now headlining its own tour, the band will receive the lengthier set time it deserved back then.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="500" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/no-bodies-crew_tedxbocaraton.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: TEDx Boca Raton</strong></p> <p>Where: Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 4 to 10:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30 students, $75 general admission</p> <p>Contact: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Local TEDx events are, invariably, an embarrassment of riches—of the cultural, inspirational and technological persuasions. This week’s dynamic program at Mizner Amphitheater will feature no less than 17 speakers spreading ideas and, as the event’s theme suggests, “breaking barriers.” Such familiar Boca luminaries as Barb Schmidt of FAU’s Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life series, organic farmer extraordinaire Farmer Jay and Charlie Siemon of Festival of the Arts Boca will speak alongside emerging or lesser-known lecturers including comedian and motivational speaker Avish Parashar, 8-year-old piano prodigy Brandon Goldberg and the No Bodies Crew (pictured), an exciting collective of South Florida urban dance artists. This illuminating festival is broken up into two sections and includes a dinner break and a post-show reception.</p> <p> </p> <p> <img alt="" height="238" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/welcome-to-me.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of Palm Beach International Film Festival</strong></p> <p>Where: Muvico Parisian 20 &amp; IMAX, 545 Hibiscus St., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $75</p> <p>Contact: 561/833-2310, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The Palm Beach International Film Festival will kick off its 20<sup>th</sup> landmark year with the South Florida premiere of a movie that is sure to receive plenty of buzz when it opens later this spring: “Welcome to Me,” a challenging, darkly comic vehicle for Kristen Wiig as a woman with borderline personality disorder who wins the lottery and promptly buys her own bizarre television show. James Marsden, Tim Robbins and Jennifer Jason Leigh costar, and director Shira Piven will appear at tonight’s screening. That $75 entry fee might just be a bargain considering that it includes an after-party at nearby Revolutions with VIP bowling, two Perfect Vodka cocktails and “festive fare.” The festival continues for seven more jam-packed days, including visits from Tom Arnold and “Boyhood” star Ellar Coltrane, a mini festival devoted to filmmaker Noah Baumbach, a multi-film spotlight on the Jewish experience and much more. Visit the festival’s website for a complete schedule.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="621" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/buriedchild.png" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Buried Child”</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Dramaworks, 201 Clematis St., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $55–$77</p> <p>Contact: 561/514-4042, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>If the American Dream is dead, as many proclaim, then Sam Shepard’s breakthrough play “Buried Child” is its astute postmortem. This winner of the 1979 Pulitzer Prize for Drama—the first off-Broadway show to accrue that honor—deconstructs a once-prosperous and healthy Midwestern family across three generations of drift and disillusionment. Earning comparisons to family-centric works such as “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” and “All My Sons,” the play pivots on the reappearance of 22-year-old Vincent at his grandfather’s farmhouse, en route to Mexico. When he arrives, nobody recognizes him, from his alcoholic, emasculated grandfather to his emotionally impotent father to his physically disabled uncle. Meanwhile, the farmland is dry as a desert and the local minister is an adulterous hypocrite. Surrealism and symbolism brush against Shepard’s otherwise realistic canvas in a three-act drama that is, by turns, comedic and heartbreaking—and squarely in the wheelhouse of Palm Beach Dramaworks, our region’s finest translator of the classics.</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="220" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/points-departure1-690x310.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Miami City Ballet: Program IV</strong></p> <p>Where: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday</p> <p>Cost: $20–$175</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-7469, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The final program in Miami City Ballet’s season might be its most challenging slate of dance all year—which may be why it’s being saved for the end. There’s a thrilling element of unpredictability in this production, as it will include the world premiere of “Heatscape” by Justin Peck, who at 26 is one of the hottest new choreographers in the country. The ballet will feature a large cast and run 35 minutes; as an added treat, the renowned illustrator Shepard Fairey will create original art for the show, which will thrive on the unexpected harmony between classic ballet and guerilla street art. Also, MCB will premiere “The Concert (or, the Perils of Everybody),” considered the funniest work in Jerome Robbins’ oeuvre. With its postmodern aim to capture the inner thoughts of classical music concertgoers, this delightful flight of fancy must have felt well ahead of its time in 1956. George Balanchine’s “Raymonda Variations,” recognized for its bravura display of solos, rounds out the program.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/5hfjad583-3.jpeg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Sarah McLachlan</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $45–$155, or $750</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Sarah McLachlan’s career path was set back in high school, when her classmates wrote in her yearbook that she was “destined to become a famous rock star.” The Canadian chanteuse proved them right, releasing her first album at age 20 and ultimately selling more than 40 million records worldwide on the strength of her fragile yet commanding mezzo-soprano vocal range. To combat a gender bias on commercial radio, McLachlan would form Lilith Fair, the successful all-female rock fest that, for a time, was the most lucrative festival in popular music. Her blockbuster hits like “Angel” and “I Will Remember You” have become indelible touchstones for grief and mourning. A supporter of myriad charities and causes, McLachlan played both of those songs at the tear-stained 2011 memorial for hijacked United Airlines Flight 93, with former and sitting world leaders in attendance. Her latest album, 2014’s “Shine On,” is also fueled by loss, this time of her father. There won’t be a dry eye at her Broward Center performance, which doubles as a fundraiser for the venue: For the $750 ticket, along with prime seating at the show, guests will enjoy a cocktail hour, full dinner and post-show party.</p> <p>SATURDAY AND SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="560" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/victor+wainright+at+springing+the+blues+2012-6.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Bacon &amp; Bourbon Fest</strong></p> <p>Where: Downtown Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 2 to 11 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday</p> <p>Cost: $25</p> <p>Contact: 561/279-0907, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Say it with me now, in your best movie-trailer voice: <em>From the team that brought you the Delray Beach Garlic Festival and the Delray Beach Wine and Seafood Festival comes a culinary happening that goes whole hog</em>. Festival Management Group’s latest event, the alliteratively titled Bacon &amp; Bourbon Fest, is a saltier, more robust affair than its predecessors, promising an array of chef-designed bacon and pork delicacies, from braised pork bellies with tamari, garlic, ginger and chili peppers to the inevitable bacon ice cream (hey, it worked for garlic). Comfort food, farm-to-table offerings and New American Cuisine will all be on the menu, and there are enough liquor seminars and tastings to turn you into a bourbon connoisseur. The live music lineup is heavy on classic rock and rollicking blues. Slated performers include Mac Arnold, a legendary Chicago bluesman who recorded with everyone from James Brown and Muddy Waters to BB King and Otis Redding; Victor Wainwright (pictured), a boisterous, Memphis-based pianist known for merging boogie-woogie and honkey-tonk music; and MaGowan’s Chair, a South Florida-based acoustic rock duo.</p> <p>MONDAY</p> <p><strong>What: Savor the Avenue </strong>(<em>Rescheduled to Monday, March 30)</em></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="367" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/savor_rescheduled.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Where: Downtown Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 5:30 to 9 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Varies per restaurant</p> <p>Contact: 561/243-1077, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Everyone’s favorite local foodie event remains as popular as ever, now in its seventh year strong. Florida’s longest dining table will spread 1,300 feet along the middle of Atlantic Avenue, where 16 of downtown Delray Beach’s finest restaurants will dish immaculately prepared four-course meals, with each course complemented by an expertly paired wine. Heavy hitters like 32 East, 50 Ocean, SoLita, Vic &amp; Angelo’s, Cut 432, Rack’s Fish House + Oyster Bar and more will offer a gut-busting survey of their most inventive cuisine. Steve Weagle, our favorite meteorologist, will emcee the evening, and $3 of each reservation will benefit this year’s charity, the city of Delray Beach’s Campaign for Grade Level Reading. Reservations are now closed through the event’s website, but call the individual restaurants to snag a list-minute spot on the sprawling table.</p>John ThomasonMon, 23 Mar 2015 16:19:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachMoviesMusicThe Week AheadUpcoming EventsSecond Fresh Market Headed for Boca<p><img alt="" height="307" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/freshmarket.jpg" width="300"></p> <p>There will be even less excuse to buy tasteless, rock-hard tomatoes and sad, wilted greens with the debut early next year of Boca’s second <strong>Fresh Market</strong>, set to go into the Park Place development on North Military Trail just past Yamato Road.</p> <p>The Boca market will be the 43rd in Florida for the North Carolina-based upscale grocer, known for its extensive array of prepared foods and fresh produce, and variety of “gourmet” food products. Even better, the other Boca Fresh Market, on West Camino Real, is the only local market I know of where on occasion you can find frozen turducken, the delightfully over-the-top chicken-stuffed-in-a-duck-stuffed-in-a-turkey concoction made famous by John Madden.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 23 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsEaster Events 2015<p><img alt="" height="308" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/easter-egg-hunt.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Easter is almost here, and this year Peter Cottontail is hopping all around town. Head out to the bunny trail for fun events that the whole family will enjoy.</p> <p><strong>Mizner Park Spring Festival and Egg-A-Palooza</strong></p> <p>Kids will hunt for toy-and-egg filled candy in an ongoing hunt. They can also play in bounce houses, make bunny hats, get their faces painted and meet the Easter Bunny.</p> <p><strong>When:</strong> Sunday, March 22, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.</p> <p><strong>Where: </strong>327 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p><strong>Price: </strong>$6 per person; kids under 18 months are free</p> <p><strong>Palm Beach Zoo Breakfast with the Bunny</strong></p> <p>Enjoy a hot buffet-style breakfast with an appearance by the Easter Bunny and other animal friends. After breakfast, separate egg hunts will be held for infants, toddlers and children. Kids can also pet farm animals and make arts-and-crafts. Pre-registration is required and full day admission to the zoo is included in the price.</p> <p><strong>When: </strong>Saturday, March 28, at 9 a.m.; and Sunday, March 29, at 8:30 or 10:30 a.m.<strong></strong></p> <p><strong>Where: </strong>301 Summit Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p><strong>Price: </strong> Adults, $32.95; Children (ages 3-12), $24.95; Toddlers (ages 0-2), $4.95 </p> <p><strong>Delray Marketplace Bunny Fun Time</strong></p> <p>Kids can play in a bunny scavenger hunt, ride on the bunny train and meet the Easter Bunny. Craft stations, face painting and a cookie decorating tent will also be set up.</p> <p><strong>When: </strong>Saturday, March 28, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.</p> <p><strong>Where:</strong> 14851 Lyons Road, Delray Beach</p> <p><strong>Price: </strong>Free</p> <p><strong>Boomers Boca 8<sup>th</sup> Annual Easter Egg Hunt</strong></p> <p>Scavenge for eggs at the largest hunt in Boca Raton. Come early for a hot breakfast with the Easter Bunny and a private hunt before the main event. After the egg hunt, stick around for attraction and video game specials.</p> <p><strong>When: </strong>Sunday, April 4, breakfast starts at 9:30 a.m., main hunt at 11 a.m.</p> <p><strong>Where:</strong> 3100 Airport Road, Boca Raton<strong></strong></p> <p><strong>Price: </strong>$9.99 per person for breakfast and private hunt. General hunt is free.</p> <p><em>Looking for more kid-friendly Easter events? Check out our <a href="/blog/2015/03/19/easter-musts-for-the-boca-kid" target="_blank">Boca Mom Talk blog on Easter</a>.</em></p>Annie PizzutelliSat, 21 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 EventsFashion Forward: Trunk Show, Girls Night Out and Glass Slippers<p><img alt="" height="600" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/jimmy-choo-disney-cinderella-vogue-9feb15-pr_b.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Bugatchi Trunk Show</strong></p> <p>Enjoy small bites and craft beers while viewing the exclusive new collection and limited edition Bugatchi styles on March 21 from 12 to 6 p.m. at Nordstrom in Town Center at Boca Raton (<em>6000 Glades Road, Boca Raton</em>6). Consult with a Bugatchi personal shopper, then sit back and enjoy a freshly rolled cigar. Customers will also receive a special gift with any Bugatchi purchase.</p> <p><strong>Girls Night Out</strong></p> <p>Join Swarowski at the Gardens Mall (<em>3101 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens</em>) for a night of style, shopping, and swag. Learn the hottest styling tips for the spring season and stock up at the Beauty Bar. The store will be unveiling new products from their latest line. The first 20 guests receive a free wine tote, and everyone will receive 20 percent off any purchase of two items or more.</p> <p><strong>The Glass Slipper</strong></p> <p>Jimmy Choo and Salvatore Ferragamo are just two of the designers that collaborated with Saks Fifth Avenue to recreate a glass slipper inspired by the classic Cinderella fairytale. All nine styles will be on display at Saks Fifth Avenue in Town Center at Boca Raton from Monday, March 23, until Sunday, March 29. The shoes will also be available for custom order.</p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 20 Mar 2015 15:41:00 +0000 NewsQ&amp;A Kat Burki<p>Kat Burki has done it all.  She did interior design. She has a background in health. Now she is making a name for herself in the beauty industry with her signature fragrance and skincare lines.  We were lucky enough to sit down with Kat before her appearance at Lord and Taylor in Mizner Park and discuss everything from where she finds her inspiration and how she plans to grow her brand.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/katburki2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>How did you break into fragrance and skincare?</strong></p> <p>I never thought I would be in the beauty industry. It was kind of half-hazard and evolved over years. I was launching my lifestyle line and wanted to create a fragrance to capture its essence.  It was part of the journey that life takes you on and the meeting of different worlds.</p> <p><strong>What brings you to South Florida?</strong></p> <p>I love the warm weather and really need the simplicity and healthy lifestyle of being in the sunshine. Our newest fragrance “Endless Summer” is inspired by that idea. It’s about that having that year-round state-of-mind, and that footloose kind of feeling.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/katburki3.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>How do you chose the scents you use?</strong></p> <p>I have a very keen sense of smell. I look for what I would want in a fragrance. I like light, crisp, notes, but I also look toward what our customers want and what’s trending.  We keep working on it until it’s perfect. The process sometimes takes years.</p> <p><strong>What makes your skincare products different than other lines on the market?</strong></p> <p>I come from a health background so I use that same philosophy. You want everything to be as fresh as it can be. Everything in our products is raw and every ingredient has a purpose. We look for boosters that complement each other. For example the reishi mushroom in the Vitamin C Intensive Day Cream has great anti-aging benefits on its own, but it also makes vitamin-C more potent. The products also have multiple benefits. Our new Form Control Marine Collagen Gel plumps, fills and helps your own collagen build up over time.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/katburki.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Kat Burki will offer individualized consultations at Lord and Taylor in Mizner Park (<em>200 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</em>) on Saturday, March 21, from 12 to 3 p.m.</p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 20 Mar 2015 15:29:00 +0000 NewsUpcoming EventsCanine Theatre 101<p><img alt="" height="500" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/tonys013.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Yesterday afternoon, at his lecture at the Crest Theatre in Delray Beach, Bill Berloni had us <em>before</em> hello.</p> <p>He walked onstage with a leash, and on that leash was a brown Chihuahua in a sparkly pink Juicy Couture sweater, tail wagging. Berloni carried the pooch’s matching fuchsia travel bag and set it on a chair. Minutes later, after Berloni placed the dog in the bag, it made itself comfortable, resting its eyes in the way only adorable creatures do, and the room stopped listening to Berloni and emitted a collective “awww.”</p> <p>Berloni is used to this; he’s probably brought Chico, the Chihuahua, to dozens of lectures just like this one. Chico starred in “Legally Blonde: The Musical” on Broadway and was responsible for the opening “lines” of the play—barked exposition that Berloni helped recreate toward the end of his lecture.</p> <p>But as Berloni explained in his humbling, touching presentation, Chico is just one of the countless animals he’s worked with in his career as a Theatrical Animal Trainer. “I’m the only one in the world to have that title, because I made it up,” he said. He discovered his first animal in 1976 and has spent more than 40 years cultivating this art form in Broadway shows ranging from “Camelot” and “The Wizard of Oz” to “Oliver” and “Gypsy,” and he’s worked with stars such as Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Natalie Portman and Julia Roberts. He won a special Tony award in 2011 for his contributions to the Broadway stage.</p> <p>He didn’t mention any of this in his lecture—or at least, he barely glazed over his impressive credits—choosing to focus instead on the empathetic rapport and mutual respect he cultivates with his stage animals, most of them saved literally from the brink of death in high-kill shelters.</p> <p>As Berloni acknowledged, his introduction into animal training has become showbiz lore: As a wannabe actor working in unpaid set construction for a Connecticut summer stock production of brand-new show called “Annie,” the 18-year Berloni was offered a role in a musical and an Equity card—if he could find and train a golden retriever to play “Sandy” in time for the show’s opening. He did find that dog, purchasing him for $7 from a local pound. That very dog would go on to play Sandy for 2,333 performances of “Annie” on Broadway, and Berloni became an accidental professional in the invented field of Theatrical Animal Trainer.</p> <p><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/berloni-5.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Hearing Berloni give new life what sounds like an apocryphal Hollywood tale brought the story home to the Crest audience. He described the raw deal he received as a teenage intern: “[The director] needed a sucker, and somehow my name came up.” He told of visiting rough dog pounds in New York and New Jersey, where the poor animals lived among dirt and their own feces. “Urine is splashing on my face” at the Connecticut Humane Society on the day he meets Sandy, the very afternoon before she was slated to be euthanized.</p> <p>This fact would have a monumental impact on Berloni. “I held a creature that was going to die,” he said. “When in society did pets have expiration dates?” Powerful stuff.</p> <p>Berloni is a good raconteur and an effective humorist, but it’s the sheer love for his animals that endeared him to the Crest audience. He revealed that he keeps all of his stage animals after their show runs end; he lives in a 5,500-square-foot house, only 1,500 of which is the “human space” he shares with his family. The rest is divided into separate wings for the 30 dogs that live with them.</p> <p>Not everyone would be willing to sacrifice so much time and effort for these animals in their everyday lives, let alone train them onstage—which means working with the dogs’ natural tendencies and employing classical conditioning techniques—for thousands of repetitions, over the course of a year per show, to get it just right.</p> <p>“I wake up every day loving my job,” he said. “I get to play with animals and make a living.” Since Berloni is too humble to brag, I’ll say it for him: It takes a special person to do this, and it was a pleasure to listen to his story for an hour and hope that just a little bit of that specialness rubs off on me.</p>John ThomasonFri, 20 Mar 2015 09:00:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachBurt Rapoport to Open Boca Deli<p><img alt="" height="434" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/rapoport.jpg" width="300"></p> <p>The recently opened Apeiro in West Delray and another coming to Miami aren’t apparently enough for noted local restaurateur Burt Rapoport, who in late 2016 will be opening <strong>Rappy’s</strong>, a contemporary take on the classic Jewish deli.</p> <p>Sliding into the same Park Place development as Fresh Market (on North Military Trail between Yamato and Clint Moore Roads), Rappy’s—the nickname of Rapoport’s grandfather—will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also cocktails, take-out and catering. Not much more info than that right now, but check back for details as they trickle out.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 20 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsStaff Picks: a unique store, a luncheon and magic spaghetti<p><strong>Sienna Blue</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/siennablue.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong></strong><em>Picked by Karen Jacaruso, Account Executive</em></p> <p>“Sienna Blue in Deerfield Beach is a one-of-a-kind gift store from all over the world's gems. I have not seen such lovely items consisting of furniture, knitted blankets, handmade soaps and jewelry, purses and art from Greece, Italy, Africa, Peru, etc. Patricia has made beautiful vignettes in every niche of this colorful, stimulating gift boutique!!</p> <p>1670 S.E. Third Court, Deerfield Beach // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p><strong>Walk to End Alzheimer's Luncheon</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="600" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bocawalk.jpg" width="400"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Kevin Kaminski, Editor</em></p> <p>"According to the national <a href="" target="_blank">Alzheimer's Association</a>, someone in this country develops the disease every 67 seconds. Many of us in and around Boca understand the challenges of this insidious and debilitating condition all too well. Against that backdrop, the team that staged last year's successful Boca Raton Walk to End Alzheimer's is hosting its first Promise Garden Luncheon at Boca West on March 27. The fundraiser, organized by chair Pamela Polani and her wonderful team of volunteers, includes a fashion show by Lord &amp; Taylor, silent auction items, and a keynote presentation by Dr. David Watson, the neuropsychologist who launched the Alzheimer's Research and Treatment Center in Lake Worth, where patients are tested and treated free of charge. Call <a>561/496-4222</a> for ticket information." </p> <p><strong>Garlic Spaghetti from Marianne</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/marianne.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em></p> <p>“The garlic spaghetti from Marianne is famous—with a secret recipe—and may be the best single thing ever done to angel hair pasta. A great guilty pleasure.”</p> <p>803 George Bush Blvd., Delray Beach // <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p>magazineFri, 20 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 Finds: The World of Peas<p>With spring less than two weeks away, it’s time to bid adieu to winter’s harvest—and say hello to the new peak-season produce starting to flood our supermarkets. The fresh bounty includes one of the world’s most commonly used and oldest known vegetables: <strong>peas</strong>. Fresh English shelling peas, snow peas and sugar snap peas are available from early March through late May. They’re at their best in early spring, when the weather is still cool.</p> <p><img alt="" height="398" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/pea_soup_with_bacon_and_mint_2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>(See recipe below)</em></p> <p>Throughout the year peas are commonly bought in frozen bags or cans, both of which contain enough preservatives to keep the contents shelf-worthy for a long period of time. It may surprise you to learn that, because of their natural sugar, peas begin converting to starch immediately after they are picked. To take advantage of peas at the height of their flavor, buy them fresh from the produce section—and prepare and eat them as soon as possible.</p> <p>Not only are peas packed with sweet flavor, they are bustling with nutritional value. Eating them fresh means that you reap their highest levels of iron, vitamin B1, potassium, fiber and protein.</p> <p>Peas, of course, can be used in countless recipes—including, one of my favorites, soup. Pea soup is a perfect bridge between the comfort foods of winter and the crispness of spring. The following recipe raises the flavor bar with mint leaves and bits of bacon.</p> <p><em>Tip: When buying and using English peas as directed in the recipe below, shell them just before cooking to prevent the peas from drying out.</em></p> <p><strong>Pea Soup with Bacon and Mint</strong></p> <p><span style="">Ingredients:</span></p> <p>1 tablespoon olive oil</p> <p>1/2 pound bacon, finely chopped, plus more for garnish</p> <p>1 medium yellow onion, chopped</p> <p>1 rib celery, chopped</p> <p>1 medium russet potato, peeled and chopped</p> <p>8 cups chicken stock</p> <p>1 cup heavy cream</p> <p>1 pound fresh, shelled English peas (from about 3 pounds unshelled)</p> <p>Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper</p> <p>2 sprigs fresh mint, plus more for garnish</p> <p><span style="">Directions:</span></p> <p>1) Add olive oil to large saucepan over medium heat. Add bacon and sauté. Once bacon is halfway cooked, about 4 minutes, add in onion, celery and potato. Sauté mixture until onions are translucent and bacon is fully cooked and crispy.</p> <p>2) Add chicken stock and bring soup to a boil. Add peas, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes, continuing to stir every few minutes.</p> <p>3) Transfer mixture into a food processor or blender and puree in batches. Return pureed soup to stove-top pot.</p> <p>4) Mix heavy cream into the saucepan over low heat. Season with salt, pepper and mint springs. Allow soup to cook for 15 minutes more. Remove mint and discard.</p> <p>5) Ladle soup into serving bowls and top with dollop of cream, bacon pieces, mint leaves and a sprinkle of pepper. Serve warm.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong>About Amanda Jane</strong></p> <p><em>Amanda Jane is the creator of the food blog <a href="" target="_blank">Seasonally Jane</a>, a creative space where she shares her love of seasonally inspired cooking through original recipes, photography and writing.  Seasonally Jane celebrates the use of peak-season fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on organic whole foods and unique ingredients. Amanda launched her blog in September 2014 and is based in Lighthouse Point.</em></p>Amanda JaneThu, 19 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsRecipes Everyone pays to play and other updates<h3><span>Finally…everyone pitches in</span></h3> <p><span><img alt="" height="488" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/oig.jpg" width="490"></span></p> <p>It has taken more than four years, but a resounding vote in favor of better government in Palm Beach County at last may take effect. Boca Raton and Delray Beach could help to make that happen as soon as possible.</p> <p>This week, Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Catherine Brunson ruled against 14 cities that had claimed that the system of paying for the <a href="" target="_blank">Office of Inspector General</a> is illegal because it amounts to double taxation. Boca and Delray are two of the cities in the lawsuit.</p> <p>In 2009, at the recommendation of a grand jury investigating public corruption, the county commission created the Office of Inspector General and the Commission on Ethics. The inspector general takes complaints about misspending or other poor financial practices, and can refer matters to the state attorney if they seem criminal. Usually, however, the office issues reports on complaints it deems worth investigating, to determine if the complaint is valid. The ethics commission hears complaints about elected officials who may have violated the county’s code of conduct.</p> <p>When the county created it, the Office of Inspector General had jurisdiction only over county government and only enough financing for a staff large enough to carry out that mandate. In November 2010, also at the grand jury’s recommendation, a referendum asked voters in the county’s 38 cities whether they wanted the inspector general to have jurisdiction over their municipality. The ballot language stated that the cities would pay a proportionate share of staffing the office to handle the new workload.</p> <p>Every city approved the idea, by wide margins. It got 72 percent in Boca Raton and 73 percent in Delray Beach. The next summer, the county crafted an ordinance to implement the public’s wishes. Cities were advised to assess a 0.25 percent surcharge on contracts, since much of the inspector general’s work deals with contracting.</p> <p>Those 14 cities, however, sued the county. (Though the Office of Inspector General is independent, it is a county agency.) The cities argued that the county was telling their residents to pay twice for the inspector general: through county taxes and through a city assessment. As Judge Brunson correctly noted in her ruling, though, “By approving the charter amendment, the <em>voters </em>in the respective municipalities <em>approved</em> (italics mine) the funding for (the Office of Inspector General.) This eliminated any discretion by the municipalities to avoid funding the program.”</p> <p>Yet, led by West Palm Beach—whose legal staff did most of the work—resist they did. Making things worse, County Clerk Sharon Bock refused even to accept money from cities willing to pay, citing the lawsuit. Inspector General John Carey, who last year succeeded Sheryl Steckler, says the office needs about 40 positions to fully do its work. Because of the lawsuit, the office has just 23 budgeted positions—and has that many only because the county has paid more than its share.</p> <p>Though lacking resources, the office still had jurisdiction over cities. The lawsuit didn’t stop that. Delray Beach especially has benefited from the office, even though resistance at first ran high among city officials.</p> <p>In 2012, the office ruled that Delray had to put the trash-hauling contract out for bid. Then-City Manager David Harden and then-City Attorney Brian Shutt disagreed. That ruling helped the city void the contract—which the city commission had extended—and seek bids, which will save residents money. Last year, the office found that then-City Manager Louie Chapman had misled the city commission on a major purchase. The ruling helped the commission force out Chapman.</p> <p>This week’s ruling gives Boca Raton and Delray Beach a reason to withdraw from the lawsuit. West Palm Beach still may appeal; there’s something almost glandular in the city’s hostility to the office. Boca and Delray, though, at last could acknowledge respect for their voters.</p> <p>Indeed, the Boca council and Delray commission soon will have mostly turned over since the lawsuit was filed. When Mitch Katz succeeds Adam Frankel on March 31, Al Jacquet will be Delray’s only elected official whose service dates to 2011. By next month, just Mayor Susan Haynie and Councilman Mike Mullaugh will remain in Boca. In 2013, Haynie was on the losing side of a vote for the city to leave the lawsuit and to start paying.</p> <p>If Boca and Delray drop out, the lawsuit will lose much of what little credibility it ever had. West Palm Beach is the largest city in the county, but Boca is second and Delray is fourth. Boynton Beach, the third-largest, never joined the lawsuit. Neither did Lake Worth and Royal Palm Beach, which are among the 10 largest. Wellington joined the lawsuit, but then dropped out. Jupiter, Palm Beach Gardens and Riviera Beach would remain, but Riviera Beach is the city where good government goes to die. Do Boca and Delray want to be its ally in this fight?</p> <p>The motivation for the lawsuit probably hasn’t been money. According to the county’s most recent calculation, Boca Raton would owe about $179,000 a year and Delray Beach would owe about $156,000. Boca’s general fund budget is about $136 million; Delray’s is $103 million. Six of the cities in the lawsuit have a combined population of about 10,000. Gulf Stream would owe $3,500. For most residents, that’s rounding error in their personal wealth.</p> <p>More likely, the real motivation is that those running the cities that sued just don’t like the idea of an inspector general. They don’t like the idea that someone can call the office anonymously, going around a city manager or a supervisor. They don’t like the idea of outside auditors questioning business as usual. Boca Raton got huffy in 2013 when the inspector general audited city credit card purchases and concluded that about $16,000 in charges didn’t meet a “public purpose,” such as tickets to a Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce breakfast.</p> <p>Mullaugh, who in 2013 voted to keep Boca Raton in the lawsuit, said Wednesday that he considers the lawsuit to have been a “legitimate” way to obtain what he calls a “proper funding formula.” But given the judge’s ruling, “if you can’t win with that, it’s time to move on.”</p> <p>A spokesman for West Palm Beach Mayor Jeri Muoio said any appeal would be “a joint decision among all the cities involved in the case.” Delray Beach Mayor Cary Glickstein told me he has asked City Attorney Noel Pfeffer to “remove” the city from the lawsuit, assuming that hasn’t happened automatically with Brunson’s ruling. He said the item would be on the commission’s April 7 agenda.</p> <p>This has been a lot of space for one issue, but people forget how bad Palm Beach County looked just a few years ago when five elected officials went to prison, one after the other. The grand jury, the Office of Inspector General and the Commission on Ethics were designed to shed the “Corruption County” label.</p> <p>Lots of misinformation has been spread and stated in the campaign against the inspector general. Former Boca Raton Mayor Susan Whelchel said in 2013 that the inspector general is “controlled by the county.” Wrong. Carey reports to a seven-member appointed committee that includes no one from the county, elected or unelected.</p> <p>As for the cities’ contention that voters somehow were confused in 2010, County Attorney Denise Nieman is right when she says the referendum was “very open.” The voters knew just what they were doing. For some alleged public servants, that’s been the problem all along.</p> <h3>Events R Us</h3> <p>From 7 a.m. until noon on Sunday, parts of Northeast Seventh Avenue in Delray Beach will be closed off for the Granfondo Garneau Florida cycling event. The trip will start at the Hyatt Place Hotel in Pineapple Park and will benefit the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center’s turtle program. Garneau sells cycling gear.</p> <p>It sounds like a fun event. It also is another reminder that the city commission made as one its 2015 goals a review of just how many such events Delray should allow to shut down parts of the city. One person’s fun day on a bike can be another person’s hassle trying to get around town, even on a Sunday. By the city’s count, Delray stages 187 festivals and such each year.</p> <p>But which ones to allow? City Commissioner Shelly Petrolia said the commission may be more inclined to favor events that promote health. Garneau organizers tout the “health and wellness” aspect of their event. Mayor Cary Glickstein wants the staff to keep approving most events, as is the system now, but he wants the commission to “revisit policy as to the application criteria (size, traffic impact, quantity and quality of events, road closures, facility impacts, payment) and how staff approves applications.”</p> <p>As with so many “problems” in Boca Raton and Delray Beach, the problem of too many events wanting the city as a venue is a good problem to have.</p> <h3>Sober house bill update</h3> <p>Bills to require certification of the “sober houses” that have proliferated in Boca Raton and Delray Beach continues to move through the Legislature.</p> <p>The Senate version, sponsored by Jeff Clemens—a Democrat from Lake Worth—has passed two committees by a combined 12-0 vote. It has gone to the Appropriations Committee, which would be its last stop before a full Senate vote.</p> <p>The House version, sponsored by Bill Hager—a Republican from Boca Raton—also has had no negative votes. On Tuesday, it was scheduled for a floor vote.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 19 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityEaster Musts for the Boca Kid<p>Santa is yesterday’s news, Boca Moms. It’s all about the Easter Bunny now, and he’s coming back to Boca and getting ready to charm your children into a chocolate egg and Peeps coma. So purchase those pint-sized pastel suits and dresses, accept that it’s one season closer to a South Florida summer and start your Easter engines!</p> <p>Here’s the Boca Mom Talk on 2015 Easter musts for your Boca kids.</p> <p><strong>Follow the Bunny at Town Center at Boca Raton</strong></p> <p>Let’s be honest. If your child has a smartphone, it’s a safe bet the <a href="">Easter Bunny</a> has entered the digital age too. Not only can you get your annual photo taken with Mr. Bunny this year in the Nordstrom wing of the Town Center (starting Friday, March 20), you can also follow him on <a href="">Facebook</a> and <a href="">Twitter</a>. Don’t worry, print photos are still available for purchase for the grandparents.</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/avery_easter.jpg" width="400"> </p> <p align="center"><em>Easter 2014, #dailybabyavery</em></p> <p><strong>Hunt for Eggs in Style at the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum</strong></p> <p>Hop up to Palm Beach on Saturday, April 4, in your Sunday best for the annual <a href="">Flagler Museum Easter Egg Hunt &amp; Roll!</a> Children are invited to search for more than 7,000 eggs on the museum’s lawns. The grounds will be sectioned off into age-appropriate areas so all kids, including toddlers, will have an opportunity to participate starting promptly at 10 a.m. No toddler trampling here!</p> <p align="center"><img alt="" height="421" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/flagler_easter.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p align="center"><em>Courtesy of</em></p> <p>After the hunt, children are invited to join in special games, including the Gilded Age game of egg rolling. Egg rolling began on the South Lawn of the White House when President Rutherford B. Hayes welcomed children to the first White House Easter Egg Roll in 1878. Special prizes will be awarded to game winners.</p> <p><strong>Cost: </strong>$15 for children, and $18 for adults. For more information, or to purchase advance tickets by phone, please contact the Flagler Museum at 561/655-2833 or e-mail the reservation coordinator.<strong></strong></p> <p><strong>Brunch with Mr. Bunny at BRIO</strong></p> <p>On Saturday, March 28 from 9-11:30 a.m., <a href="">BRIO at The Shops at Boca Center</a> will offer a delicious bunny buffet breakfast for the whole family, including scrambled eggs, French toast (stuffed and unstuffed), sausage, bacon, potatoes, biscuits, muffins and fruit parfaits. </p> <p align="center"> <img alt="" height="287" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/brio_easter.jpg" width="490"></p> <p align="center"><em>Courtesy of BRIO</em></p> <p>Is your mouth watering yet? My family and I attended the Santa brunch in December and it was a total blast…even though our 18 month old daughter gave St. Nick the side eye for most of our meal. Make your reservation early and bring your camera because Mr. Bunny will visit each and every table, bringing springtime well wishes to you and your family.</p> <p><strong>Cost: </strong>$5.95 for children; $11.95 for adults (buffet or plated). For reservations, call 561/392-3777.</p> <p>Happy Easter Boca Raton!</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><a href="/blog/tag/boca-mom-talk/" target="_blank">For more from Boca Mom Talk, click here.</a></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em><strong></strong>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href="" target="_blank"></a><strong>, </strong>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. <strong>Modern Boca Mom</strong> features events for both mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersThu, 19 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 EventsMovie Review: &quot;The Gunman&quot;<p>“The Gunman,” which opens Friday, is an action film that dares to be bigger than itself.</p> <p>The latest thriller from director Pierre Morel (the original <em>Taken</em>) will satisfy fans of shoot-em-ups and stab-em-ups, but unlike many its peers in this popcorn genre, it doesn’t come at the expense of brains and geopolitical commentary.</p> <p><img alt="" height="226" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/sean-penn-in-the-gunman-most-anticipated-movie-of-2015-620x350.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>From the very first image, we’re bombarded with actual news footage—or at least it looks real enough—circa 2006, as solemn anchors with European accents report on the genocide in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the subsequent raping of the nation’s natural resources by multinational corporations. Amid this bloodshed and corruption is Sean Penn’s Jim “Twink” Terrier, a humanitarian aid worker by day and, unbeknownst to his doctor-without-border girlfriend Annie (Jasmine Trinca), a mercenary contractor by night. Operating as both hero and antihero, Jim works with small clique of operatives under the orders of an unnamed, shadowy corporation. After he’s ordered to plant an assassin’s bullet in the body of a nosy government official, he’s then ordered to leave the Congo—apparently for good—with Annie deposited into the lascivious hands of fellow-mercenary Felix (Javier Bardem).</p> <p>The rest of the story—which is most of it—takes place eight years later, with Jim enjoying a life of peace, surfing and well-building in the Congo. He’s an elder statesman of unequivocal humanitarianism who is suddenly forced to confront his past when terrorists invade his camp, seeking his head on a platter. Little does he know they’re just the aperitif in a multi-course phalanx of enemies that want Jim dead, a journey that soon reaches the more picturesque climes of London and Barcelona.</p> <p>Penn, who co-wrote the screenplay and must be partly responsible for its anti-corporate conscience, is an interesting choice for an action-film lead. For most former Oscar winners, taking a role like this might seem like slummin’ it, but his intensity and actorly intelligence is undiminished by mass-market genre. Even in the 2006 sequences, with Penn made up to look darker-haired, mustachioed and mysterious, he still has the weary exhaustion of somebody who’s too old for this work; eight filmic years later, his moral devolution into violence is evident all over his face and body, despite his purposeful strides and chiseled physique, the veins in his arms as thick as fettuccini.</p> <p>That’s because “The Gunman” is a film that takes its time to consider the emotional repercussions of violence—the tragic calculus of life and death—in a way most action pics do not. This alone raises the movie a notch above Morel’s “Taken,” which was filmed with such a relentless single-mindedness that it never once stopped to smell the moral roses.</p> <p><img alt="" height="208" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/jasmine-trinca-in-the-gunman-movie-5.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>That said, some of the movie’s plot points and grammatical decisions proceed with a glazed-over familiarity: the indestructible superman with an Achilles’ heel (in Jim’s case, diagnosed long-term head trauma that frequently resurfaces); professional killers who, when targeting Jim and Annie, can never seem to shoot straight; the revelation of an evil, eloquent mastermind who talks too much.</p> <p>We’re forced to jump over these requisite hurdles of logic to reach the end, but what an inspired tinderbox of a climax it is, set in a bullfighting arena. And even when it goes through the motions, “The Gunman” is still head and shoulders above most of its action-film competition, its eye never far from the real-world Congolese holocaust on which its fiction is grafted. There’s a lot of red liquid that spills from people’s orifices in “The Gunman,” but its <em>raison d’etre</em> is its bleeding heart.</p>John ThomasonWed, 18 Mar 2015 18:01:51 +0000 & EventsMoviesTap It On The Ave. Kicks off March<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Beginning the last Wednesday of March and continuing as tradition on the last Wednesday of every month through Sept. 30, Delray Beach Running Company is launching its <a href="" target="_blank">Tap It On The Ave. Pub Run</a>.</p> <p>Runners can get a little exercise while running to top tap destinations on Atlantic Avenue. Sponsors include <a href="" target="_blank">Vintage Tap</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Bru's Room</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Johnnie Browns</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Boston's on the Beach</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">Hudson at Waterway East</a> and <a href="" target="_blank">Park Tavern</a>.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Registration</a> for Tap It On The Ave. is a one-time fee of $25. Runners or walkers can sign up anytime between now and September. Tap It On The Ave. starts at 6:30 p.m. The evening run begins and ends at Delray Beach Running Company (<em>20 W. Atlantic Ave., Suite 101, Delray Beach</em>).</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/delraybeachrunningcompany.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Register and you’ll receive a commemorative​ Nike Tech shirt, as well as samplings of what’s on tap at each of the establishments. Don’t forget your ID and to wear reflective clothing, so you’re visible to cars when the sun goes down.</p> <p>Delray Beach Running Company’s owner Annie Burke is a longtime local and runner. She was a police officer in Delray Beach in the 1980s, then worked for the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. After 27 years of service, she retired in 2012. She has been a runner for 32 years.</p> <p>Tap It On The Ave. makes running fun, adds a sense of community and supports businesses on the Avenue, says Burke in an interview with The Fit Life.</p> <p>A certified USA Track and Field (USATF) coach and Newton running coach, Burke and her staff offer state-of-the-art fittings and coach people in proper running form and more. She offers coaching and custom fittings for free in her running store. Also free: Delray Beach Running Company hosts three weekly runs starting at the store. Group runs are Saturday at 6 a.m., Tuesday at 5:30 a.m. and Thursday at 6:30 p.m.</p> <p>The store will begin offering Galloway (run, walk, run) training at the end of the month. For more information, contact Delray Beach Running Company at 561/270-7622 or go to <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 18 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH to open in Boca<p>Mark your calendars: <strong>Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH</strong> is opening up in the Somerset Shoppes in Boca Raton at the end of March. The store is hosting a preview party on March 25, beginning at 4 p.m., featuring a live DJ, light refreshments and a first look at the store. There will also be giveaways <em>(see image below for more details)</em> throughout the grand opening weekend.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="" height="612" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/saks_off_fifth.jpg" width="400"></a></p> <p>The store officially opens on March 26, with store hours of 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The outlet location of this major high-end department store will have nearly 1,000 brands available, including Coach, Jimmy Choo, Diane Von Furstenberg and Marc by Marc Jacobs.</p> <p>Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH marks the third store location in Boca for Hudson’s Bay Company, the parent company of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord &amp; Taylor.</p> <p>“Boca has proven to be a great market for HBC,” says Tiffany Boure, HBC’s Director of External Communications. “We believe that the kind of style savvy shoppers [in Boca] are a great fit for Saks Fifth Avenue OFF Fifth, because we really are bringing true fashion to the market for real value.”</p> <p><em>Somerset Shoppes is located at 8903 Glades Road, Boca Raton.</em></p>Stefanie CaintoWed, 18 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 NewsThe Week Ahead: March 17 to 23<p>WEDNESDAY</p> <p> <img alt="" height="406" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/333.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: “Pablo Picasso: Painted Ceramics and Works on Paper”</strong></p> <p>Where: NSU Art Museum, 1 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $5-$12</p> <p>Contact: 954/525-5500, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This exhibit at the former Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale opened March 12 but flew under my radar. This week marks an excellent time to check out this rare trove of some 72 objects from Pablo Picasso spanning 1931 to 1971. The artist is recognized globally for his contributions to cubism, collage and constructed sculpture, manifested primarily in his groundbreaking, reality-bending paintings. But this exhibition, culled largely from the museum’s own generous cache of Picasso gifts, spotlights lesser-known but equally innovative mediums, from etchings and aquatints to the more than 50 ceramic bowls, pitchers and plates he completed until just two years before his death. Many of them are emblazoned with signature Picasso imagery—owls, bullfights, bacchanals, acrobats and more—making this an essential survey even for those already familiar with his most iconic periods. It runs through Nov. 1.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="300" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/news_619-1409301653.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Elvis Costello</strong></p> <p>Where: Broward Center, 201 S.W. Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 8 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $49.50-$129.50</p> <p>Contact: 954/462-0222, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Fans of the rockin’ side of Elvis Costello only have to wait until August, when the English troubadour returns to the Coral Skies Amphitheatre for a set with his backing band, the Imposters. But if you prefer Elvis as the rootsy, acoustic guitar-plucking balladeer, his current solo tour is the jaunt for you. The shows on this tour have received rave reviews from critics praising his reinvention of classics and his integration of newer and deeper cuts from his eclectic 30-year archive. Hits like “Watching the Detectives,” “Alison” and “Pump it Up” anchor the set, but the rest is a mixed bag that changes every night, including lesser-known songs from albums like “National Ransom” and “Spike,” and an always-shifting palette of cover songs by the likes of Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash. Larkin Poe, the Atlanta-based roots rockers that have been touted as “little sisters of the Allman Brothers,” will open the show and return occasionally to back up Costello.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="225" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/berloni_540_wide-40fbd256e95e0ed285130937a6ad0015dd77ec8a.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Bill Berloni</strong></p> <p>Where: Delray Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach</p> <p>When: 2 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30-$45</p> <p>Contact: 561/243-7922, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Every now and then on Broadway, a four-legged actor will perform with such verisimilitude that you hope the board of the Tonys will add “Best Performance by a Canine” to its awards the following year. Sandy, the terrier mix who co-starred in 2,377 performances in “Annie,” was one such pooch. The man who discovered Sandy, Bill Berloni, was a 19-year-old theater apprentice whose job consisted of building sets for summer stock companies. He rescued Sandy from the local pound, paid $7 for him, and launched the careers of both the man and his best friend. Berloni has become the American media’s impresario of animal thespians, providing animals for hundreds of films, TV shows, commercials, theatrical productions, even a New York City Ballet performance. He’s worked with everything from cockroaches and butterflies to elephants and giraffes, along with countless dogs and cats liberated from kill shelters. The winner of a 2011 Tony Award for Excellence in Theatre will visit Delray Beach, with a canine companion in tow, to discuss his memoir, <em>Broadway Tails</em>.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/galleria_adam_nadal_imaging_eden.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening day of “Imaging Eden”</strong></p> <p>Where: Norton Museum of Art, 1451 S. Olive Ave., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $5-$12</p> <p>Contact: 561/832-5196, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The Everglades is one of the most-photographed natural wetlands in the country, with a Google search for “Everglades photography” yielding 3.5 million hits. But at 60 miles wide and 100 miles long, there are surely enough points along the River of Grass that haven’t received their proper close-up. In fact, Tim Wride, curator of photography at the Norton Museum, believes that despite the proliferation of Everglades snapshots, “There was no systematic imaging of the Everglades through photography until the 20th century, which was very late when you consider Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, Yosemite … all these wilderness areas had already been imaged by the third quarter of the 19th century. I thought it would be interesting to see how the Everglades had been imaged over time and bring it directly up to present day.” The result is “Imaging Eden,” an exhibition that showcases the oldest surviving Everglades images on through the work of four imaginative photographers, commissioned by Wride, to show us the mighty wetland in ways we’ve never seen it before.</p> <p>SATURDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="256" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/488db3dac2761.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Jenny McCarthy’s “Dirty, Sexy, Funny” tour</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Improv, 550 S. Rosemary Ave., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 7 and 9:45 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $30 with a two-drink minimum</p> <p>Contact: 561/833-1812, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Controversy and comedy have always been combustible bedfellows, presumably dating back to the birth of public joke-making itself. Lenny Bruce, George Carlin, Bill Hicks, Bill Maher, Chris Rock and many more have forged their reputations by saying things that large swaths of audiences find offensive. So the brick wall of the standup stage seems like as hospitable an environment as any for Jenny McCarthy, an unlikely lightning rod for controversy. The former <em>Playboy</em> playmate, television personality, and star of many a straight-to-video comedy has come under fire in recent years for parroting the discredited argument that vaccines cause autism. The <em>L.A. Times</em> called her a “public menace” and Salon eviscerated her “war on science,” to cite just two reactions. Barring the interruptions of hecklers, expect the blonde bombshell and recent reality-TV star to avoid the vaccine topic completely in her current “Dirty, Sexy, Funny,” tour, which also features the talents of four other female comedians with envelope-pushing reputations.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="274" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/linder_engine_fire-large-700x479.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Alternative Contemporaneities: TAZ”</strong></p> <p>Where: Museum of Contemporary Art, 770 N.E. 125<sup>th</sup> St., North Miami</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $3 students and seniors, $5 general admission</p> <p>Contact: 305/893-6211, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>It would never make a best-seller list, but in certain circles, Hakim Bey’s radical 1991 book “T.A.Z.: The Temporary Autonomous Zone” is akin to a bible—a practical field guide to modern anarchism. The “zones” of the title are places carved out to elude formal structures of control, and Bey’s chapter headings suggest both the excitement and danger of such places: “Pirate Utopias,” “Waiting for the Revolution,” “Ratholes in the Babylon of Information.” In its latest “Alternative Contemporaneities” exhibition, North Miami’s boundary-pushing Museum of Contemporary Art will expand on Bey’s philosophies, creating artistic spaces that fulfill Bey’s criteria. This mysterious and provocative group exhibition features the work of nearly 60 artists, including such familiar names as Kevin Arrow, Beatriz Monteavaro and Philip Estlund, and it runs through May 30.</p> <p>SATURDAY AND SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="248" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/r-kelly-101.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: Jazz in the Gardens 2015</strong></p> <p>Where: Sun Life Stadium, 347 Shula Drive, Miami Gardens</p> <p>When: 4 p.m. each day</p> <p>Cost: $67-$195</p> <p>Contact: 305/623-6100, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>This year marks a major achievement for Jazz in the Gardens, which celebrates its 10<sup>th</sup> anniversary of bringing world-class music to Miami Gardens. Appropriately enough, the festival will be offering a landmark lineup, arguably its strongest yet, whose attendance will surely exceed last year’s 68,000 visitors. Saturday will feature R. Kelly (pictured), the notorious rapper-producer credited by Billboard as the most successful R&amp;B artist in history; Toni Braxton, the seven-time Grammy winner and reality TV star; and Men of Soul, featuring the soulful love songs of veteran crooners Jeffrey Osborne, Peabo Bryson, Freddie Jackson and Howard Hewett. Sunday will feature sets from Maxwell and Erykah Badu, two of the foremost vocalists in the neo-soul movement; Run-D.M.C., the pioneering hip-hop group; and Brian Culbertston, the award-winning multi-instrumentalist and smooth jazzman. D.L. Hughley will emcee the festivities. Visit the event website for the complete schedule.</p>John ThomasonTue, 17 Mar 2015 16:56:00 +0000 & EventsDelray BeachMusicThe Week AheadUpcoming EventsBocaMagTV: Healthy Taco Recipe<p>Loved our healthy taco video from BocaMagTV? As promised, here's the recipe from our Green Goddess:</p> <p><img alt="" height="278" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/healthytacos.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p><strong>Ingredients:</strong></p> <p>Beyond Meat Meatless Crumbles</p> <p>Cumin</p> <p>Chili Powder</p> <p>Daiya Cheese</p> <p>Shredded Cabbage</p> <p>Chopped Avocado</p> <p>Sprouts</p> <p>Cilantro</p> <p>Sprouted Organic Corn Tortilla</p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Instructions:</strong><br><br>Heat up meatless crumbles in pan. Add spices, and melt cheese on top. Place into tortilla, add toppings and enjoy!</p>magazineTue, 17 Mar 2015 13:31:00 +0000 Bluegrass Spring Music Jam<p dir="ltr"><img alt="" height="330" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bluegrass_logo_fb.jpg" width="330"></p> <p dir="ltr">Take a step back to the good ole’ days and enjoy the homegrown sounds of banjos and fiddles at the Bluegrass Spring Music Jam. More than 20 acts will take the stage at the South Florida Fairgrounds (<em>9067 Southern Blvd., West Palm Beach</em>)  during this three-day festival from March 20-22.</p> <p dir="ltr">Rhonda Vincent,  the “Queen of Bluegrass”, will kick things off on Friday with hits like “Busy City” and “Only Me”. Then on Saturday night, the Boxcars will perform songs off their Grammy-nominated album “It’s Just a Road,”.</p> <p>The festival will be a fun time for the whole family. There will be old fashioned games and an arts and crafts table for the kids, as well as horseshoe and cornhole tournaments for the adults.</p> <p>But the true competition will be heat up through food contests. On Saturday, chefs will compete in the Coca-Cola Bar-B-Que Sauce Competition. Winners will receive bragging rights, get their recipe featured on the website and win a cash prize.</p> <p>Burgeoning musicians will want to bring their instruments along. Jam sessions and songwriter workshops will be held throughout the weekend.</p> <p>Tickets are $15 per day or $36 for a 3-day pass. Admission also includes admission to all historic Yesteryear Village buildings. Parking is free for this event and campsites are available for $35 per day.</p> <p>For more information please call 561/ 793-0333 or check out the <a href="" target="_blank">website</a>.</p>Annie PizzutelliTue, 17 Mar 2015 10:00:00 +0000 & EventsUpcoming EventsThe Auburn Trace update and election thoughts<h3>Auburn Trace</h3> <p><img alt="" height="333" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-17_at_8.15.18_am.png" width="490"></p> <p>A year ago, Delray Beach was talking about the city’s roughly $4 million investment in the Auburn Trace housing project. Delray Beach is still talking about those millions, but in a much better way—specifically, how the city can avoid losing them.</p> <p>The city owns the second mortgage on the project that for a quarter-century has been home to low-income residents in Delray’s southwest neighborhood east of Interstate 95. In 1989, Delray loaned the developer $3.84 million from a federal housing grant at very favorable terms. Iberiabank owns the roughly $4.7 million first mortgage, and last October the bank foreclosed. In January, Auburn Trace, Ltd., which is part of Delray Beach-based Auburn Communities, filed a voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition and is seeking to reorganize.</p> <p>Being second in line, Delray Beach could be out that $3.84 million, depending on how reorganization proceeds. In a January memo to the city commission, City Attorney Noel Pfeffer presented a proposal under which Delray Beach would buy the first mortgage from Iberiabank at a slight discount—about $4.3 million—to “better preserve its financial position. . .” Otherwise, Delray Beach might recoup only any equity left after paying off the bank, an amount that could be little or nothing. The city’s mortgage, Pfeffer wrote, could be “extinguished.”</p> <p>The commission unanimously approved the proposal. On March 3, the city commission met in executive session— not open to the public—for a discussion about Auburn Trace that included not just Pfeffer but also the bankruptcy attorney hired to represent the city.</p> <p>Though his January memo to the commission said the city needed to have closed on the mortgage sale by Feb. 27, Pfeffer told me Monday that the date was March 27. The city’s “due diligence” deadline ended Monday, and Pfeffer said nothing problematic turned up in the check of Auburn Trace’s condition and appraisals of the property. But the bank, Pfeffer said, needs approval of the sale from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. To allow time for that approval, Pfeffer said, he will schedule an item for the March 31 commission meeting that would extend the closing date to “the end of May.”</p> <p>Ideally, Delray Beach wouldn’t be in this position. Ideally, Auburn Trace, Ltd., would be paying off the first and second mortgages and fixing up the property. Pfeffer acknowledged in his memo that this is a “complex transaction with an uncertain outcome.” Yet it’s a distinct and better transaction than the one that nearly got forced on the city a year ago.</p> <p>One day before the commission meeting of March 16, 2014, Auburn Trace Ltd., asked the city to modify that loan. In exchange for the developer giving the city seven years of interest payments—$1.05 million—up front, the city would loan yet another Auburn affiliate another $4.3 million over 17 years. The affiliate would make no interest payments until the ninth year. The memo to commissioners called terms of the final principal payment “ambiguous.”</p> <p>The memo added, “These terms are an incomplete basis on which to make a decision. . .Even were the terms to be attractive, there is little confidence in Auburn’s ability to fulfill its obligations.” The memo noted that two months earlier Iberiabank had told the city that Auburn was in default on both mortgages.</p> <p>It was just the most recent request by Auburn Trace. The original 15-year loan became a 25-year loan, which then was extended to more than 31 years. Interest payments were delayed, and the city’s interest was “subordinated,” the memo said, so that Auburn could get more financing.</p> <p>Then-City Manager Louie Chapman recommended last year that the commission reject the loan modification. Instead, the commission approved it 3-0. One vote came from Angeleta Gray, a lame duck who had lost her campaign for reelection. The two other votes came from Adam Frankel and Al Jacquet. Mayor Cary Glickstein and Commissioner Shelly Petrolia had been out of town. None of the terms had been in writing. “I struggle to understand what (the commission) agreed to,” Pfeffer said.</p> <p>Fortunately, the interim city attorney scheduled for the next meeting a vote on rescinding that approval. With Glickstein and Petrolia back and Gray having been replaced by Jordana Jarjura, the vote to undo one of the most reckless decisions by any Delray commission passed 4-0.</p> <p>Jacquet was a no-show, but Frankel reversed himself. In 2009, seven months into his first term, Frankel had voted to approve Villages at Delray, another Auburn Communities project. The <em>Sun-Sentinel</em> reported that 18 percent of Frankel’s campaign contributions had come from Auburn, its officials and its affiliates.</p> <p>One could argue that Delray Beach now should let the reorganization play out and take its chances. One could argue that even if Delray Beach lost the investment, the money has helped to create affordable housing in what has been an overlooked part of the city. Pfeffer says Auburn Trace has been basically full for the last five years.</p> <p>The case for intervening, though, is stronger. The money, Pfeffer said, is too much to ignore. Then there’s what Petrolia calls “the human element.” This is about peoples’ lives, not just the city’s finances. Delray Beach wants Auburn Trace to continue as a successful project, which will require upgrading the units.</p> <p>The city isn’t just attempting to get more control over its money. The city is attempting to get more control over Auburn Trace’s future. The potential return on investment goes beyond numbers. The political change in Delray Beach over the last two years has led to the city’s improved priorities regarding Auburn Trace.</p> <p>Politics and the eye doctor</p> <p>The controversy involving a Palm Beach County ophthalmologist and a U.S. senator has a lot to do with politics and even more to do about the cost of health care.</p> <p>Salomon Melgen has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., and the Democratic Party. Courtesy of Melgen, Menendez has taken trips on private jets that he did not report as gifts, later repaying Melgen.</p> <p>When Medicare has questioned Melgen’s possible overbilling, Menendez has intervened on Melgen’s behalf. Menendez also intervened on behalf of a company in which Melgen had an interest when the company was having trouble enforcing a contract with the Dominican Republic.</p> <p>South Florida long has been known as a center of health care fraud and excessive billing, especially when the patients are on Medicare. But as the <em>Times</em> reported in January, the push in Washington for a health care system driven by outcomes rather than services has made some snowbirds question tests and procedures suggested by doctors in Florida. Those skeptics call their doctors in the Northeast and Midwest for a second opinion and are told that the tests and procedures aren’t necessary.</p> <p>The paper reported that Florida leads the nation in costs for tests and imaging for seniors over the last two years of their lives. In his address to the Legislature this year, Gov. Rick Scott referred to Florida’s “exceptionalism.” The Melgen story is a reminder that when it comes to health care Florida too often is “exceptional” in the wrong way.</p> <h3>Boca election notes</h3> <p>It’s not often in a three-way race that the candidate who gets the fewest absentee votes get the most at the polls, but Jeremy Rodgers pulled it off to win the Boca Raton City Council Seat 3 race last week.</p> <p>To do that, according to precinct results released Friday by the supervisor of elections office, Rodgers got his biggest margins in areas where turnout was highest. That happened throughout the city, not just in one area. Rodgers lives in northwest Boca, but he did very well in downtown precincts. He nearly doubled Jamie Sauer’s total in one of the precincts where her neighbors vote.</p> <p>As expected, Sauer won some of the northwest precincts where former Mayor Steven Abrams has run well. Abrams was helping Sauer. But her margins there over Rodgers were small. Turnout was only 11.3 percent, but for Rodgers it was a strategic 11.3 percent.</p> <h3>And Delray’s outcome</h3> <p>Meanwhile in Delray Beach, Mitch Katz did something more remarkable.</p> <p>In the four-way race for the Seat 3 city commission seat, Katz won nearly every precinct on Election Day. I counted just three for Christina Morrison, two for Josh Smith and none for Bruce Bastian. Like Rodgers, Katz trailed after the absentees were counted. Morrison led.</p> <p>At the polls, however, Katz got 603 votes more than Morrison in a race where turnout was 16.3 percent. And given the breadth of his support and the balance of his fund-raising, Katz can say and mean it that he intends to represent all parts of the city.</p> <p>Based on that precinct-by-precinct report, Delray Beach Mayor Cary Glickstein mostly owes his victory to downtown voters. Glickstein beat Tom Carney by 490 votes in a surprisingly close race, and Glickstein got 267 votes more than Carney in just three downtown precincts, two at Veterans Park and one at the 505 Club on South Federal Highway. Glickstein won more precincts, but he needed to win those big, and did.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 17 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityConcert Review: Journey<p><img alt="" height="534" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/journey.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Perhaps no band in rock history has ridden the wave of one song’s repeated and unexpected splash into the cultural mainstream any better than <strong>Journey</strong>.</p> <p>As evidenced by the overflow crowd standing as one and in full throat during the band’s performance of it Sunday night at Coral Sky Amphitheater, “Don’t Stop Believin’” has moved beyond a simple audience-pleasing set-closer. It’s officially an anthem for the ages, one that, for different reasons, resonates with everyone from Baby Boomers to generations X, Y and Z.</p> <p>All of which must drive <em>Rolling Stone</em> absolutely crazy.</p> <p>This is the same song that, upon its release in 1981, a reviewer for the magazine wrote, “Lord knows how many weary pilgrims have managed to tramp down the memory lane of adolescent lust without the side trip that Journey [makes] to the dank hole of dreck-ola … addressing [its] audience as ‘streetlight people.’” Another <em>Rolling Stone</em> writer once referred to the Bay Area band’s music as “Stepford Wives rock.”</p> <p>OK. So Journey may never be a critical darling. But what does that matter when you’re the people’s choice? Can the estimated 18,000 in attendance at Coral Sky for Sunday’s show with Steve Miller Band really be that wrong?</p> <p>For the record, I bring a bit of bias to the discussion. Journey was my first concert, back in the general admission days of 1980, and I've been a fan ever since. My friend and I that night had maneuvered our way next to the stage at Lee County Arena in Fort Myers. Just as guitarist Neal Schon tore into the first notes of “Any Way You Want It” (which Journey opened with at Coral Sky), the third member of our party passed out. Unbeknown to us, he had ingested an illegal substance of some kind—which, combined with the wall of sound, caused him to black out. We dragged him into the bathroom (he survived), and reclaimed our prime position. </p> <p>Journey killed it that night—and 35 years later, they’re still killing it. Along the way, the band has cycled through its share of players, including, at one point, future “American Idol” judge Randy Jackson on bass. The current incarnation includes three members from the heyday of the band’s commercial success—Schon, keyboardist Jonathan Cain and bassist Ross Valory—as well as drummer Dean Castronovo, who turned in one of the show’s highlights with his take on “Still They Ride.”</p> <p>But it’s lead singer Arnel Pineda, who, in his own way, has helped to write the most recent chapter in a history that dates back to 1973, when Journey was positioning itself as a jazz fusion group in San Francisco. The diminutive Filipino front man not only does justice to the songs made famous by Steve Perry—one of the more unmistakable rock voices of the last four decades—but he has a story straight out of the Mark Wahlberg movie “Rock Star.” Schon discovered Pineda on YouTube performing Journey songs with a cover band—and hired him in 2007.</p> <p>On stage, Pineda couldn’t be more different than Perry, who relied more on the strength of his dynamic vocals than his personality. Pineda, on the other hand, is like a human pinball, zigzagging between band members and jumping off platforms. For Schon and Cain, who are in their 60s, the energy must be contagious. Schon, who never met a guitar solo he didn't like, squeezed two of them into an abbreviated set; Cain, sporting some serious porkchop sideburns, turned in a keyboard solo and handled some guitar work at times. Both men brought as much enthusiasm to songs like “Separate Ways” and “Wheel in the Sky” as they did during their stadium-headlining days of the early ’80s.</p> <p>Pineda brought the house down with a powerful rendition of the 1983 hit “Faithfully,” which preceded the song that everybody had come to hear. What makes the rise of “Don’t Stop Believin’” even more remarkable is that it wasn’t even the biggest hit off the 1981 album “Escape.” That distinction belonged to “Open Arms,” which became Journey’s highest-charting single on Billboard’s Top 100 at No. 2 (“Don’t’ Stop” only reached No. 9.)</p> <p>But then, more than two decades after its release, a funny thing happened to “Don’t Stop Believin’.” It started showing up—everywhere. The Chicago White Sox adopted it in 2005 during their playoff run. “The Sopranos” made it the soundtrack of the series’ famous final scene. “Rock of Ages” brought it to Broadway. Rock Band brought it to video gamers. The TV show “Glee” performed it multiple times.</p> <p>Suddenly, “Don’t Stop Believin’” was having a second act like no song in recent history—and maybe ever. It became one of the most downloaded songs since iTunes debuted, selling more than 6 million units in the U.S. alone.</p> <p>On Sunday, Pineda got the song started, and the crowd took it from there. And so it goes for a band that could have wound up a guilty pleasure—but instead, for many people, has become a national treasure.</p> <p><strong><span>Journey Set List</span></strong></p> <p>Any Way You Want It</p> <p>Separate Ways</p> <p>Neal Schon guitar solo</p> <p>Stone in Love</p> <p>Lights</p> <p>Still They Ride</p> <p>Jonathan Cain keyboard solo</p> <p>Who’s Crying Now</p> <p>Open Arms</p> <p>Escape</p> <p>La Do Da</p> <p>Be Good To Yourself</p> <p>Neal Schon guitar solo</p> <p>Wheel in the Sky</p> <p>Faithfully</p> <p>Don’t Stop Believin’</p> <p><strong>Encore</strong></p> <p>Lovin’ Touchin’ Squeezin’</p>Kevin KaminskiMon, 16 Mar 2015 16:42:00 +0000 & EventsMusicOpinionsSwank Farm salutes the veggie this Sunday<p><img alt="" height="291" src="/site_media/uploads/girl_with_hat.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>March is a bonus month for those of us who love, love, love Swank Table! This Sunday, there will be a SECOND Sunday dinner this month out at the Loxahatchee farm—this time celebrating all things veggie!</p> <p>“Where’s The Beet?” will take place from 4 to 9 p.m., Sunday, March 22, at Jodi and Darrell Swank’s bucolic farm—in the massive pole barn they had built for these occasions.</p> <p>And who’s starring this Sunday? Ken Blue and his team from West Palm’s Hippocrates Health Institute will join executive chef Julie Frans from Miami’s The Palms Hotel &amp; Spa, executive chef Lauren DeShields and sommelier Kirsta Grauberger from Market 17 in Fort Lauderdale, Jeff and Pam Hardy from Mom’s Pops in Palm Beach and Krystal Kinney, advanced sommelier, from Eau Palm Beach Resort &amp; Spa. Due South Brewery will be on hand, as well as entertainment by The Baron Sisters.</p> <p>For South Florida foodies, a Swank dinner is one of the highlights of our winter season—and they always sell out. Do not miss this chance to have a magical al fresco Sunday with fresh off-the-farm food, convivial company and some of the best chefs around. For more information and tickets visit <a href=""></a>.</p>Marie SpeedMon, 16 Mar 2015 16:21:00 +0000 & ReviewsBrio Adds to Food, Wine Menus<p>With snowbird season beginning to wind down, restaurants start tweaking their menus to give the rest of us still around fresh reason to show up. Here’s what the <strong>Brio Tuscan Grilles</strong> in Boca (<em>5050 Town Center Circle, 561/392-3777</em>), West Palm (<em>550 S. Rosemary Ave., 561/835-1511</em>) and Palm Beach Gardens (<em>3101 PGA Blvd., 561/622-0491</em>) are doing. . .</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/brio_new.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Pictured: Applewood Bacon &amp; Tomato Jam Bruschetta</em></p> <p>At lunch and weekend brunch there’s a new applewood-smoked bacon and tomato jam bruschetta. Newly added lunch and dinner items include sausage and onion jam pizza with three cheeses and arugula, grilled chicken and roasted balsamic peppers with farro, quinoa and pesto vinaigrette, and lobster and shrimp ravioli with black pepper cream sauce. For dinner there’s a crab and shrimp-crusted salmon with lemon vinaigrette.</p> <p>Two new wines by the glass (and bottle) are blends of several grapes. There’s the 19 Crimes Red from Australia, which goes for $8.95 a glass or $34 a bottle, and the Dreaming Tree Everyday White Blend from California, which will cost you $10.95 a glass and $42 a bottle.</p> <p>Sip that while the folks in Boston are still up to their eyeballs in snow.</p> <div><span class="fbPhotosPhotoCaption"><span class="hasCaption"><br></span></span></div>Bill CitaraMon, 16 Mar 2015 11:25:00 +0000 & ReviewsItalian Meatery Opens in Lantana<p>Does the restaurant-eating location at 210 E. Ocean Ave. in Lantana have another meal?</p> <p><img alt="" height="387" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/paesano.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>For the sake of Fiorenzo Trunzo we can only hope not. Trunzo, you see, is the chef-owner of <strong>Paesano</strong> (561/547-0266) a retro, 1950s-style Italian restaurant-slash-steakhouse that has taken over the gorgeous, semi-open and perpetually star-crossed spot formerly home to Tapas 210 and before that the very good and very odd Apicius.</p> <p>Harking back to an era when, “Life was easy and fun. Amore was plentiful, worries less and the food was always bellisimo,” Paesano offers both traditional and more contemporary dishes, from eggplant Parmigiana, fettucine Bolognese and veal Milanese to tuna tartar tower with avocado and seaweed, spaghetti with bottarga in a spicy garlic sauce and a Kobe-style beef burger with brandy cocktail sauce and taleggio cheese. There’s also pizza and a roster of Black Angus steaks.</p> <p>Keep your fingers crossed Paesano sticks around. A setting this pretty deserves a good restaurant.</p> <p> </p>Bill CitaraFri, 13 Mar 2015 15:05:00 +0000 & ReviewsConcert Review: &quot;The Sing-Off&quot; Live<p>NBC’s a cappella competition show, “The Sing-Off,” received short network shrift last year, with its entire fifth season condensed into one two-hour special. But the series’ live tour proved to be a more than acceptable consolation prize, stopping by Coral Springs Center for the Arts last night for an evening of unpredictable fun and vocal acrobatics that, like the TV show, rendered musical instruments superfluous.</p> <p>The three touring acts, representing seasons two, four and five of “The Sing-Off,” opened the show with a riveting group version of the elastic Queen/David Bowie smash “Under Pressure,” a sprightly take that integrated barbershop-style crooning and scatting.</p> <p><img alt="" height="300" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/the-exchange-cheesing-on-the-sing-off.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Last season’s finalists The Exchange performed the evening’s first full set, finding their forte in today’s Top 40 hits. They opened with Bruno Mars’ “Runaway Baby” then tore through a couple of numbers from the series—the soulful thunder clatter of Ed Sheeren’s “Sing,” in which they nailed its impossibly high falsettos, and OneRepublic’s “Love Runs Out,” which proved that their members know when to hold back to magnify a song’s emotional impact. A crushing, bass-heavy “Radioactive” followed, but the Exchange’s most memorable moment was also its most unexpected: a spartan, heartfelt rendition of “Georgia On My Mind,” performed off-mic. Suddenly, it felt like The Exchange was singing in a giant living room; its vintage approach transfixed the auditorium.</p> <p>Another surprise followed their performance, and set the tone for the next one. A few members from the three groups performed a hilarious ping-pong sketch that combined mime with beatboxing. It started with one member “bouncing” an invisible ball on an invisible paddle and then became a fiercely competitive doubles match that integrated slow-motion and took on the intensity of a climactic fight in a “Rocky” movie. It was something out of vaudeville, not a music show—a hilarious and endearing treat.</p> <p><img alt="" height="202" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/voice-play-the-sing-off-season-4.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>It was the perfect introduction to the highlight of the night: a set of comedy and music from VoicePlay, a quintet of Orlandoans that take the pomp and circumstance out of a cappella. Fronted by the charismatic Earl Elkins Jr.—imagine Freddie Mercury with Flock of Seagulls hair—the group’s set included an inspired parody of a “Now!” music compilation ad, complete with video help from Season Four winners Home Free, which saw VoicePlay satirize a medley of hits, from “Bang Bang” and “Drunk on a Plane” to “Animals” and “Let it Go.”</p> <p>Then, they played the top 10 songs on iTunes’ Broadway chart in 30-second segments, resulting in a dizzying mash-up of Frankie Valli and Trey Parker, “Avenue Q” and “Les Miserables.” Next, they dragged an audience member onstage for an “audition” to be VoicePlay’s sixth member—except that only <em>we</em> knew what each audition entailed.</p> <p>Nearly all of this material was presented as more of a sketch than a song, and it was liberating to watch a group that enforces the “Play” of its name as much as the “Voice.” Films like “Pitch Perfect” have emphasized the competitive nature of a cappella collectives, but it’s amazing to watch what a group like this can accomplish when liberated from the need to outperform its rivals.</p> <p><img alt="" height="211" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/street-corner-symphony-group.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Street Corner Symphony, a popular act from Season Two, closed the concert with its technically flawless take on classic-rock tunes by the likes of CCR, the Black Crowes and Chuck Berry, along with an original song, “Voodoo.” Of all the performers on this tour, SCS brought the most serious artistry to the stage, with vocal percussionists who managed to simulate upright bass, electric guitars, horns and a full drum kit. Excellent as they were, the performance couldn’t help but feel anticlimactic after the rousing, off-kilter brilliance of VoicePlay, which should have headlined. The three groups joined forces for two more numbers—a soaring “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” and a mike-less “Fix You”—to send us home.</p> <p>There were too many empty seats at the Coral Springs Center last night, but attendees certainly <em>did</em> find what they were looking for—a reminder of a cappella’s wellspring of talent that just might hold them over until the next season of “The Sing-Off;” we can only hope it will last more than one night.</p>John ThomasonFri, 13 Mar 2015 14:26:01 +0000 & EventsMusicFashion Forward: a foodie + fashion event and more<p><strong><img alt="" height="287" src="/site_media/uploads/century.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><strong>Outfit your home:</strong> On the hunt for new furniture? You're in luck. Brown's Interior Design (<em>4501 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton</em>) is holding a spring sale on all Century Furniture through March 31. Get great savings on sofas, ottomans, lighting and more.</p> <p><strong>Food and fashion:</strong> Palm Beach Outlets is hosting an evening of fashion and dining on April 9. From 6 to 9 p.m., enjoy food sampling, a fashion show, live music, giveaways and a silent auction. Tickets can be bought in advance until March 15 at <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</p> <p><strong>Be an ambassador:</strong> Lilac &amp; Lilies Boutique is on the hunt for brand ambassadors. Make it official, and you'll receive L&amp;L cash - plus other bonus benefits for being a part of the team. Email for more info.</p>Stefanie CaintoFri, 13 Mar 2015 10:17:00 +0000 NewsMichael Grunwald sends a message<p>It wasn’t warm and fuzzy last night when <a href="" target="_blank">Michael Grunwald</a> spoke at the Festival of the Arts Author series.  He was not the elder statesmanlike Richard Ford, or the cozy and jocular Doris Kearns Goodwin, Nope, he was young, direct and completely on point: The Everglades is in peril, and with it, so are we.</p> <p>Period.</p> <p><img alt="" height="359" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/grunwald_michael1.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Much in the same way he crafted his impressive tour de force, <em>The Swamp</em>, he outlined in historic detail what has happened to the Everglades, what can be done, and what the status report is—and it ain’t real good, folks. The water is slowly getting more pure (but not pure enough) and there’s no place to store it. Lake Okeechobee flushes are destroying the estuaries, no one has been willing to take on Big Sugar (although he credits the industry with enormous strides in clean water practices) or spend the money to buy enough land to reverse what the Army Corps of Engineers did to Florida.</p> <p>It is a highly complex issue, and one that Grunwald covered masterfully in <em>The Swamp</em>, arguably the best book about Florida, in my opinion, and one which should be required reading for anyone who steps foot in the state—and tattooed on the eyelids of our elected officials. </p> <p>Grunwald is no impassioned tree hugger; he doesn’t even seem to much like the Everglades (“It’s no Yosemite,” he says) But he recognizes it as essential to Florida’s future, through water retention as well as sea level rise. Plus there’s no other place like it. On earth.</p> <p>Our ability to reverse its collapse is not only essential to saving Florida, but a moral imperative as well. And I quote him: </p> <p>“The Everglades restoration is now the model for restoring the Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes and the Louisiana coastal wetlands but also the Okavango Delta in Africa and the Garden of Eden marshes that Suddam Hussein destroyed in Iraq. There really is a sense that if Broward county and Miami-Dade can’t figure out how to save this place—how to share water so there some for the people and some for the otters—then it’s kind of hard to figure out how Israel and Syria are going to be able to do it.”</p> <p>The Author series at the Festival has become increasingly more compelling—with Richard Ford, Grunwald and Thomas Friedman among the speakers this year. I only wish everyone could have heard Grunwald’s talk. It might not have been a feel-good message, but it is one we all need to hear—again and again.</p> <p> </p> <p><em>Don’t miss </em>Boca<em> magazine’s full interview with Michael Grunwald in our May-June issue</em>.</p>Marie SpeedFri, 13 Mar 2015 09:53:00 +0000 & EventsStaff Picks: food on our minds<p><strong>DaVinci’s Crab Cake Salad</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="331" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/davincis_exterior.png" width="490"> </p> <p>Picked by Rebecca Valenza, Account Manager</p> <p>“Just the right combination of greens, gorgonzola cheese and crab. Delicious!”</p> <p>(Da Vinci’s of Boca, Town Center at Boca // <a href="" target="_blank"></a>)</p> <p><strong>Salmon Tacos at Mariposa</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="355" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/salmontacos.jpg" width="490"> </strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>"Two generous portions of blackened salmon wrapped up in a slightly crispy corn tortilla, with lime cabbage salad and a delicious light chipotle mayo. The salmon practically melts in your mouth!"</p> <p>(Mariposa at Neiman Marcus, Town Center at Boca Raton)</p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank"><em>For more staff picks, click here.</em></a></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 13 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 at the International Polo Club<p>If you’re looking for a brunch experience you’re never going to forget, then you may want to pay a visit to the <strong>International Polo Club</strong> on Sundays.</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/polobrunch.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The $120 buffet brunch features an incredible assortment of more than 80 brunch items that change weekly. Feast on dishes like red velvet waffles, poached salmon, prosciutto and burrata and house-made sea salt caramel truffle gelato.</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/polobrunch2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/polobrunch3.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>There are several stations throughout the brunch room for everyone’s tastes. There’s a water buffet, featuring items like snow crab claws and seared ahi tuna; a build-your-own omelet or waffle station; a roasted meat station; a cheese and meat area; and so much more. The choices are overwhelming, but with careful planning, you’ll taste everything you need – and more – and leave with a stomach-full of delicious food and a champagne buzz.</p> <p>To view the full season schedule and purchase tickets,  <a href=""></a>.</p> <p><em>Note: If you want to watch the polo match as well, I suggest buying seats at the watching area across the field. Commentary isn’t played on speakers at the brunch area.</em></p>Stefanie CaintoThu, 12 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsUpcoming EventsElection Wrap-Up<p><img alt="" height="399" src="/site_media/uploads/elections1.jpg" width="450"></p> <p>There are interesting takeaways from Tuesday’s elections in Boca Raton and Delray Beach. Here’s a look at three of them.</p> <h3>Money talks?</h3> <p>The main lesson from Boca Raton is an old but still important one: The candidate with the most money doesn’t always win.</p> <p>In the race to succeed Constance Scott in Seat C, that candidate was Frank Chapman. He loaned himself $172,000, tossing in $70,000 at the end of the campaign to go with the $102,000 he first used to almost entirely self-finance his second effort for a city council seat. According to the most recent treasury reports, which extend through March 5, Jamie Sauer had raised about $76,000 in direct contributions and Jeremy Rodgers had raised roughly $38,000. Chapman also had “dark money” from electioneering communications organizations helping him.</p> <p>Yet Chapman came in third, just a sliver behind Sauer but nearly 12 percentage points behind Rodgers. Since Chapman made a big push on absentee ballots and led in votes counted before Election Day, the margin at the polls was even larger.</p> <p>Chapman sent out almost two dozen mailers and had a TV commercial. Rodgers sent out only two mailers the weekend before the election, and the Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce‑—which endorsed him—sent out another pro-Rodgers mailer. That was it.</p> <p>In an interview Wednesday, Rodgers credited his message, which was that Boca Raton should make itself “the best place to start a business” and was more positive than Chapman’s mailers, which mocked Rodgers and Sauer as tools of developers and the Tea Party. One of the few IBMers left in the city, Rodgers noted that the company “invented the personal computer” in Boca Raton and said he wants the city to nurture its nascent high-tech industry.</p> <p>Rodgers also cited his team of volunteers, some of whom had worked in political races and helped him develop his strategy. “Our unpaid people at the polls,” Rodgers said, “ran into paid people” from other campaigns.</p> <p>Sauer had support from Mayor Susan Haynie and Councilman Mike Mullaugh, but I wouldn’t expect that to be problematic for Rodgers when he joins the council on March 31. The incumbents’ priority was defeating Chapman. Because he didn’t have to rely on support from council members, Rodgers could bring a helpful outside perspective. Even in a city such as Boca Raton, where many things are going well, lockstep is a bad thing.</p> <h3>Turnout blues</h3> <p>Turnout in the Seat C race was 6,858 votes. The last time Boca Raton had a single council race was in 2012, when Chapman lost to Anthony Majhess. Turnout was 6,851 votes. If the turnout remains too low, it certainly has been consistent.</p> <h3>The Delray message</h3> <p>About a year ago, Mitch Katz wore a T-shirt that said: “Impeach Al and Adam.” That would be Delray Beach city commissioners Al Jacquet and Adam Frankel. Their reckless vote to modify the city’s loan to the Auburn Trace housing project—Frankel reversed himself at the next meeting—prompted Katz to wear the shirt.</p> <p>Tuesday night, Katz told me, Jacquet was shaking Katz’ hand to congratulate him on winning Frankel’s seat. Funny old world.</p> <p>In one sense, Katz’ Seat 3 victory was a surprise. He got into the race late. He didn’t have a strong advantage in fund-raising. He had three opponents, each of whom could have pulled enough votes from different voting blocs to get a margin in a city with no runoff election.</p> <p>In another sense, though, Katz had a running start. He took over the team of volunteers who had assembled to work for Chris Davey. He narrowly lost to Jacquet last year and was prepared to run this year before withdrawing. Indeed, Katz had been part of that team, having supported Davey himself in 2014. Katz got into the race a day after Davey dropped out. And according to campaign finance reports through Feb. 20, Katz raised $15,000. That was less than the $24,000 for Christina Morrison and the $23,000 for Bruce Bastian—they finished second and third, respectively—but it was adequate. He had public support from Commissioner Shelly Petrolia.</p> <p>Still, it took lots of work for Katz to win. “I pretty much passed out on the way down to the bed,” he said of his victory sleep. And if Katz had Petrolia on his side, Mayor Cary Glickstein and Commissioner Jordana Jarjura were supporting Bastian.</p> <p>Where Frank Chapman campaigned against overdevelopment in Boca Raton and lost, Katz campaigned against overdevelopment and won. That says much about the role business plays in the respective cities, but Katz is hardly anti-growth, even if he based his campaign on “beating the special interests.” When he joins the commission, Katz wants to “get the citizens that care and the developers together and find a compromise.”</p> <p>Katz sees no difficulty in working with Glickstein and Jarjura. “They’re both good people,” he said, pointing out that he “worked very hard” for Glickstein in 2013 and Jarjura last year. Despite having supported Bastian, Glickstein says Katz will be a “huge upgrade” from Frankel, who held out against firing former City Manager Louie Chapman and shifting the trash contract from Waste Management. I would expect Katz to share the progressive approach of Glickstein, Jarjura and Petrolia but to dissent when he considers it necessary.</p> <h3>And the Mayor’s margin</h3> <p>In the Delray Beach mayor’s race, the surprise wasn’t that Cary Glickstein won. The surprise was that he didn’t win by more.</p> <p>Glickstein beat Tom Carney by 460 votes in a rematch from 2013. Glickstein did get about 500 votes more than he got two years ago, and his margin was wider—53.3 percent compared to 52.1 percent in 2013. But Glickstein had a good record to run on. Delray Beach has much better management in City Hall, the new trash contract will save residents $8 million, downtown development is spreading to West Atlantic Avenue and new building regulations address the wish of Glickstein’s constituents to keep Delray’s small-town feel even as it draws more residents and visitors. Also, Carney got into the race very late.</p> <p>So was it Glickstein’s style? Does he come off even to some supporters as brusque or even haughty?</p> <p>In an interview, Glickstein said running for office is “always healthy in the sense of self-examination. There’s nothing more revealing than a political campaign.” Between running his company, Ironwood Properties, his duties as a father and his work for the city, Glickstein said, “I’ve never been wired for a lot of small talk.”</p> <p>Glickstein acknowledges, though, that “optics are important. It’s a fair criticism. My family would say that the stress of the job is visible. It’s something I’ve got to work on.”</p> <p>Since he won’t be running again due to the city’s term-limits rule, Glickstein could decide that he doesn’t need to change his businesslike approach and his obvious impatience for what can be the glacial pace of government change. But if residents aren’t getting the message of great progress in a relatively short time, perhaps the problem is the sender.</p> <p>Glickstein says Delray still faces many “challenges” in the three years he will be mayor. Bringing the public along will make it easier to deal with those challenges.</p> <h3>Diversity notes</h3> <p>The Brookings Institution, a left-leaning think tank in Washington, regularly updates its study of diversity in the United States. The changing makeup of the population affects everything, especially politics.</p> <p>In its latest report, Brookings lists the 10 states with the most generational diversity: the largest gaps between the percentage of minority residents who are 19 and under and the percentage who are 65 and over. Florida ranks sixth, below Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, California and Texas and above Delaware, Oklahoma, Washington and Rhode Island.</p> <p>According to the study, 56 percent of Floridians 19 and under are people of color, compared to 24 percent for those 65 and over. In New Mexico, 74 percent of the 19-and-under population is minority.</p> <p>In Palm Beach County, 58.2 percent of all residents are white; 17.6 percent are African-American and 20.3 percent are Hispanic. Broward County is already majority-minority. Roughly 41 percent of residents are white, with 27 percent African-American and 26.9 percent are Hispanic.</p> <p>To check out the diversity population of each county in the country, <a href="" target="_blank">click here</a>.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 12 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityWired For the Better<p>Is technology our friend or our enemy? Is it making us smarter, or dumbing us down?</p> <p>The answer to these questions is probably “both,” but the doomsayers usually win out in the popular press, with proof in the pudding of misspelled tweets, asinine Facebook posts and brain-melting YouTube trifles that flit across hundreds of thousands of screens every day, turning us into numbed zombies in hopeless throng to megabytes and satellites.</p> <p><img alt="" height="259" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/clive-thompson.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Clive Thompson takes the more halcyon view. One of North America’s most prominent technology writers argues that tech is actually making our brains smarter, as the title of his insightful 2014 book, <em>Smarter Than You Think</em>, suggests. Last night, Thompson took to the lectern at Mizner Park Studio Theater to explain some of his evidence at a thought-provoking, amusing lecture at Festival of the Arts Boca.</p> <p><img alt="" height="450" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/stalin-photos.jpg" width="413"></p> <p>Thompson spoke quickly, incisively and seemingly extemporaneously, aided by slides in the manner of a TED talk. He opened his presentation, surprisingly, in Stalinist Russia, showing us how the Soviet dictator would conveniently “eliminate” political rivals from his photographs until only Stalin remained in frame, through a method of proto-Photoshopping. Through this Orwellian rewriting of history, Thompson was saying that “reality” has been manipulated to serve the needs of the powerful long before the technology to do so became democratized.</p> <p><img alt="" height="257" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/0709-lede-iran.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>He then moved on to actual Photoshop manipulation, centering on the notorious Iranian missile-launch hoax of 2008—a doctored image of four rockets firing simultaneously that even the world’s top newspapers ran as fact. But here’s the thing: It took a clutch of tech-savvy computer nerds to deduce the truth, work collectively, expose the hoax and then mercilessly spoof it. In one Photoshop manipulation, a giant cat paws at one of the projectiles (“Cats are the fungible go-to animal when you want to mock someone,” Thompson said).</p> <p><img alt="" height="278" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/iran-1.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>In this case, tech knowledge helped expose the truth, and Thompson spent the rest of his lecture elucidating other ways that a perpetually plugged-in, begizmoed populace is helping to change the world and enhance our brainpower. He used terms I had never encountered before, like “public thinking” and “ambient awareness” and “video literacy” in a lecture that bounced across such topics as real estate, the evolution of the camera, pointillist art, the fourth season of “Breaking Bad,” hidden videogame codes and the folding of proteins in the development of pharmaceuticals. He smattered his presentation with astonishing statistics: Thanks to social media, the world now produces 3.6 trillion written words per day, which Thompson argues is making a nation of non-scribblers better and more-prolific writers.</p> <p>Thompson explained that a truly worldwide Web has helped to expose, advocate and connect in times of global or national distress, such as corruption and violence in Kenya and the earthquake in Haiti. And he even found a defense for reading someone’s Tweets—for an entire year. “Follow [my feed] for a year, and you’ll have a map of what’s going on inside my head,” he said.</p> <p>The lecture, which should have been better attended, surely didn’t convince everyone that a perpetually connected world is a force for good. But I certainly walked away with new perspectives on a continually evolving topic—not to mention the discovery of a new author that’s well worth “following.”</p>John ThomasonWed, 11 Mar 2015 13:53:54 +0000 & EventsHealthy St. Paddy’s Eats<p><img alt="" height="36" src="/site_media/uploads/greengoddess.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>St. Paddy’s Day is just around the corner, and that means wearing green for good luck and celebrating with your favorite Irish beer. That has me thinking about the famous Irish folktale about a leprechaun hiding its treasure at the end of a rainbow. While a pot of gold sounds rather appealing, I think radiant health is a much more valuable treasure to obtain.</p> <p>To help you go truly green and feel great in your body post-celebration, I highlighted my tips and tricks to Irish fare.</p> <p><strong>Potatoes</strong></p> <p>Potatoes have been getting a bad rep lately, but they’re actually good for you. Filled with bloat-reducing potassium, fiber, iron, zinc and energy-boosting carbs, a medium potato has only 160 calories and boasts 4 grams of fiber and 4 grams of protein. But note of advice –skip the big calorie offenders like sour cream, butter and cheese. They’re the ones that can contribute to weight-gain and lethargy. Instead sprinkle your potato with some metabolism-boosting hot sauce and serve it with a side of green veggies.</p> <p><strong>Cabbage</strong></p> <p>Low in calories and high in fiber (only 22 calories per cup), this Irish staple can help you stay satisfied for hours. Best of all, cabbage is a part of the famous cruciferous vegetables that help protect the body from cancer. When I’m out at a typical Irish pub and there are no good vegetarian dishes, I always order a side of cabbage, one baked potato and a green salad.</p> <p><strong>Guinness</strong></p> <p>Personally, I prefer light, low-calorie beers such as Amstel Light, but when in an Irish pub, drinking what the Irish drink may not be too bad. Research has shown that dark beer like Guinness is actually packed with antioxidants. Just remember that it still has liver-suppressing alcohol, so limit your drink to one glass, which is about 125 calories.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/dubliner.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><em>Pictured: The Dubliner</em></p> <p><strong>Go Green in Boca’s Dubliner</strong></p> <p>If you like to indulge in Irish staples such as shepherd’s pie, but want to skip all the cholesterol, try <a href="">Dubliner</a>’s Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie. If you are in the mood for dessert, split one Oatmeal Apple Crisp (skip the ice cream) with friends and then go for a nice walk around Mizner Park!<em> (</em><em>435 Plaza Real, Mizner Park, Boca Raton // 561/620-2540)</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more from the Green Goddess, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-green-goddess/" target="_blank">here</a>.</em></p> <p><em><strong>About Alina Z.</strong>
</em></p> <p><em>Alina Z., aka “The Green Goddess,” is a certified holistic health coach, detox specialist and raw-food chef (she conducts occasional classes at Whole Foods in Boca). Prior to moving to Florida,  Alina hosted her own TV show in Maryland—“Entertaining A to Z”—for people who didn’t have time to cook but wanted to eat healthy. Catch one of her web episodes at, visit Alina’s website at <a href=""></a>, or follow her on Facebook (<a href="/admin/blog/blogpost/10225/"></a>) or Twitter (<a href="">@CoutureFood</a>). The Green Goddess blog runs every other Wednesday at <a href="/"></a>.</em></p> <p><em><br></em></p>Alina Z.Wed, 11 Mar 2015 09:26:00 +0000 & ReviewsUpcoming EventsDoggie Run/Walk + This Month in Health<p><strong><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><strong>Four Paws 5k Run</strong></p> <p>Coming up on Sunday, March 22: the <a href="">Justin Bartlett Animal Rescue's</a> Four Paws 5k Run in downtown Lake Worth. It’s your chance to adopt a dog, or run/walk a 5K with yours.</p> <p><img alt="" height="357" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/doggierun.jpg" width="391"></p> <p>Runners start at Bryant Park (100 South Gulfview Road) at 8 a.m. Runners without accompanying dogs will go first, followed by runners with dogs, walkers and walkers with dogs.</p> <p>The cost? $30 per person, plus a signup fee of $2.50 until race day. Registration goes up to $40 for adults on the morning of the race.  </p> <p>This is more than a race; it’s an all-day event. Runners and those there to watch can enjoy entertainment by a band and DJ, vendors, food, an Easter egg hunt for the kids and more. The Justin Bartlett Animal Rescue will have onsite adoptions the day of the race.</p> <p>All dogs are welcome but must be on a leash. Participating dogs will receive goody bags, according to race literature.</p> <p>To sign up online, <a href="">click here</a>.</p> <p><strong>March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month</strong></p> <p>You might have seen a lot of people wearing blue last week. The <a href="">Colon Cancer Alliance</a>’s “National Dress in Blue Day” falls on the first Friday of March each year. If you missed it, don’t worry: the entire month is dedicated to raising awareness about colon cancer.</p> <p>Colon cancer is the third most diagnosed cancer and second leading cause of cancer death in U.S. men and women combined. While colon cancer can happen at any age in adulthood, 90 percent of new cases occur in people ages 50 or older.</p> <p>The good news about this cancer is it can be detected early, and early detection and treatment saves lives.</p> <p>While everyone should talk with his or her doctor about the right screenings, as well as the timing and frequency of those screenings, there are general recommendations. These include regular screenings starting at age 50, such as a colonoscopy every 10 years, according to <a href="">Florida Health</a>.</p> <p>Learn more about colon cancer, risk, treatment and prevention, at <a href="http://http//"></a>.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 11 Mar 2015 08:21:00 +0000 NewsHealth/BeautyDark money in local elections and more local news<h3><img alt="" height="328" src="/site_media/uploads/logo-election-money-mahurin.jpg" width="293"></h3> <h3>Dark money, murky messages</h3> <p>Over the weekend, the last flurry of campaign mailers hit mailboxes in Boca Raton and Delray Beach. While some mailers—a staple of local elections—are straightforward, others are designed to mislead and/or deceive voters. Big surprise, right?</p> <p>Consider the mailer attacking Boca Raton City Council Seat C candidate Frank Chapman. It correctly states that Chapman’s first application to the Ohio Bar was denied because of, as the mailer put it, “immoral, unethical &amp; illegal behavior.” Close enough. While Chapman was working at his father’s carpet and upholstery business, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office took action against him for “deceptive and unconscionable sales practices.” Chapman agreed to testify against his father. He was fined and ordered to pay restitution.</p> <p>But who sent the mailer? It comes from Keeping Citizens First, Inc. The group’s West Palm Beach address matches that of the political consulting firm working for Jamie Sauer, one of Chapman’s opponents.</p> <p>Another mailer targets Jeremy Rodgers, the third candidate in Seat C. Two firefighters are pictured in the mailer, which attacks Rodgers for his comment that Boca Raton might have to consider switching firefighters and police officers from the traditional defined-benefit pension system—with a guaranteed payout—to a defined-contribution plan like the 401(c) 3 pensions to which many private companies have switched. Firefighters and police officers prefer the guaranteed payouts.</p> <p>The source of the mailer is Floridians for Integrity in Government, which is based in Tampa. This is the same group that last year sent mailers attacking Armand Grossman, then a candidate for Seat C. The money for the mailers came from Chapman’s wife. On Feb. 27, the firefighters union sent Floridians for Integrity in Government a check for $5,000.</p> <p>So the firefighter mailer amounts to Chapman attacking Rodgers without using Chapman’s name. Perhaps Chapman didn’t attach his name to this mailer because he ran unsuccessfully for the council in 2012 against the union-backed candidate, Anthony Majhess, and didn’t want to appear even more inconsistent. Chapman already is running against the Boca Raton political establishment whose support he welcomed three years ago.</p> <p>Floridians for Integrity in Government and Keeping Citizens First are “electioneering communications organizations,” known as ECOs. They are different from political action committees in that under Florida law they cannot “expressly advocate” that one candidate win or lose. Obviously, though, the intent is clear‑even if the identity behind the mailer isn’t.</p> <p>ECOs also help to hide the source of money spent to influence elections. Candidates must report direct contributions. Boca Raton and Delray Beach post those periodic reports on the cities’ websites. Money to ECOs, however, is much harder to trace, and there are no limits on how much donors can give.</p> <p>In Delray Beach, the same Floridians for Integrity in Government has sent mailers on behalf of Bruce Bastian, one of four candidates running for Seat 3. One mailer attacks the other candidates—Mitch Katz, Christina Morrison and Josh Smith—as having “failed” to address critical issues facing the city. Neither Katz nor Smith ever has served on the city commission, and Morrison only briefly served as an appointed commissioner in 2013.</p> <p>One of the big issues facing the next commission is approval of a development agreement with Atlantic Crossing, the controversial mixed-use project on Atlantic Avenue just west of Veterans Park. If you check Bastian’s campaign treasury reports through Feb. 20, you will find no contributions directly from Atlantic Crossing.</p> <p>But if you check with the Florida Division of Elections for contributions to Floridians for Integrity in Government, you will find a pair of $2,500 contributions directly from Atlantic Crossing. Both came on Feb. 24. One is from CDS Group Holdings, which owns the Atlantic Crossing site and whose principal is Carl DeSantis. The other is listed as PJAM, but its address matches that for the Columbus, Ohio, headquarters of The Edwards Cos., which is building Atlantic Crossing’s residential component.</p> <p>So there’s a $5,000 contribution—serious money in a local election—related to a major issue that voters wouldn’t know about, given the nature of an ECO.</p> <p>Another mystery mailer in Delray falsely links Mayor Cary Glickstein to All Aboard Florida, the passenger rail service that has created much controversy in parts of South Florida and especially in the Treasure Coast, by picturing him in a train conductor’s uniform. In fact, city officials have no power over All Aboard Florida. The parent company owns the tracks, and federal agencies have responsibility for approving All Aboard Florida’s plans.</p> <p>The mailer comes from Citizens for a Better Delray Beach. It is registered with the city as an electioneering communications organization, and reports a single donation of $10,000. The donation came on Feb. 19 from American Dialogue, yet another ECO, this one based in Boca.</p> <p>The address for Citizens for a Better Delray Beach is a house in the northwest section of the city. The address for American Dialogue is a condo west of Boca Raton. The chairperson/treasurer of American Dialogue is listed as Evan Carson, but the property appraiser’s website does not list Evan Carson as the owner of the condo.</p> <p>The treasurer’s report of Citizens for a Better Delray Beach is signed by Rick Burgess. In 2014, Rick Burgess ran as the third candidate when Chris Davey challenged incumbent commissioner Al Jacquet. Davey’s supporters saw Burgess as a spoiler designed to help Jacquet. Burgess got 294 votes. Jacquet won by 265 votes.</p> <p>Since Tom Carney is the only candidate challenging Glickstein, the mailer obviously is on his behalf. Glickstein and others consider Carney to be allied with the Mary McCarty faction in Delray Beach politics. Carney’s name, of course, does not appear on the mailer.</p> <p>Compounding the difficulty of tracing this “dark money” is that people can use the same ECO in multiple campaigns at different levels. Floridians for Integrity in Government played a big role last year in a local state Senate race. In contrast, the state nearly revoked American Dialogue’s status in 2014 for lack of activity.</p> <p>The point of these ECOS, of course, is to hide the money from the public. Money in politics is enough of a problem. Now it’s the money behind the money.</p> <h3>Predictions</h3> <p>So who’s going to win in Boca and Delray? As with national elections, it will depend on turnout.</p> <p>Frank Chapman is self-financing his campaign, and has sent out the most mailers, casting himself as the anti-overdevelopment candidate. It’s an easy and potentially winning issue, potentially more so in the eastern neighborhoods. Rodgers has been in the race the longest but has the least amount of money. He does have the endorsement of the Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce, but the chamber is much less active in city elections than it was a decade ago.</p> <p>Sauer got into the race last. Her hope lies with her supporters—meaning most current and recent Boca Raton elected officials. A Sauer mailer included a testimonial from former Mayor and current County Commissioner Steven Abrams, comparing Sauer to former Mayor Susan Whelchel and current Mayor Susan Haynie. A recorded message also went out Monday to Boca voters. Abrams always gets much support from the northwest neighborhoods that have the highest turnout in the city. Sauer lives in the east, but her fate likely lies with the west.</p> <p>In Delray, the odds probably favor Glickstein for a second term. He has loaned himself $100,000, Carney got into the race late, and things are better after Glickstein’s two years in office.</p> <p>For the commission seat, it’s hard to imagine any of the four candidates getting an outright majority. Each has potential appeal in certain segments of the community. Delray Beach has no runoff unless two candidates tie, so however small the percentage the winner will get all the power of a vote.</p> <h3>Bondi challenges deportation delay</h3> <p>As I’ve written, reform of the nation’s immigration system would help Florida more than almost any other state. Even minor reform that granted legal status to some of South Florida’s undocumented residents would help law enforcement—without fear of deportation, people are more likely to report crimes—and the economy—employers couldn’t drive down wages by exploiting the silent.</p> <p>Yet Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is among those challenging President Obama’s 2014 executive action that would delay deportation for the parents of some illegal immigrants whose children were born here. According to the Pew Research Center, Obama’s action could apply to roughly 300,000 Floridians.</p> <p>Pew calculates that of the 5 million who could be eligible, 2.3 million live in states that are challenging the president’s action. A federal judge in Texas ruled against the president. The administration is appealing.</p> <h3>Time change</h3> <p>If you woke up in darkness Monday and emerged from Dunkin Donuts before the sun really was up, you might have wondered, as many of us do twice a year, Why do we change the time? Does it do any good?</p> <p>Not really. According to an article distributed by Quartz Media, the federal government in 2008 found no overall energy savings from Daylight Saving Time, even though proponents say that longer days mean more natural light for office buildings.</p> <p>For nearly a century, the United States has been messing with the natural cycle of day and night. We are one of just 82 nations that still do so. And while we once alternated between Daylight Time and Standard Time every six months, Daylight Time now starts in early March, as opposed to what for years was late April.</p> <p>March is one of the most glorious months in South Florida. But it would be just as glorious if we could ease into it, not be jolted into it.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 10 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityThe Week Ahead: March 10 to 16<p>TUESDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="340" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/0410_rita-moreno.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Rita Moreno</strong></p> <p>Where: Society of the Four Arts, 2 Four Arts Plaza, Palm Beach</p> <p>When: 3 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: Free for members, $35 nonmembers</p> <p>Contact: 561/655-7226, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>The jewel of Society of the Four Arts’ 2015 Lecture Series, Rita Moreno personifies the American Dream: She’s a farmer’s daughter, birthed from a 17-year-old mother in Humacao, Puerto Rico, and by age 13, two years after she began lending her voice to Spanish translations of American films, she debuted on Broadway. The rest is rich history: a pyramid of parts on stage and screen topped by her role-defining performance as Anita in the film adaptation of “West Side Story.” Future roles helped typecast her as a fiery Latina, but she’s displayed enough range in her 70-year career to portray an Irish teacher, an Italian widow, a proper Englishwoman and a Southern belle. And she hasn’t stopped: At 83, Moreno can be seen in “Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks,” currently in theaters. No word whether her “Afternoon With Rita Moreno” at Four Arts will include a musical component, but we can hope.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="400" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/ven03_ja_10oct_intro-400x400.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>What: The Gin Blossoms</strong></p> <p>Where: Revolution Live, 100 S.W. Third St., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $25</p> <p>Contact: 954/449-1025, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Nobody wears flannel anymore, and simple, affecting, jangly guitar-pop is as absent on the radio these days as polka and F-bombs. But the Gin Blossoms’ clean, heartfelt pop-rock persists into the 21<sup>st</sup> century, outlasting the commercial peak and subsequent flameouts of many of its early ‘90s peers. Founded in Tempe, Ariz., in 1987, the group achieved widespread success with the 1992 hit “Hey Jealousy,” only to suffer the firing and suicide of bandmate (and writer of that song) Doug Hopkins shortly thereafter. The band released just one more album before dissolving, only to reunite in 2002 with its devoted fan base intact. The new albums are good, but the band generously draws most of its material from its multiplatinum early LPs, including such sing-along head-boppers as “Allison Road” and “Follow You Down.” Krisp will open the show.</p> <p>THURSDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/b9316387376z.1_20150225144241_000_gama2g8n4.1-0.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “The Sing-Off” live</strong></p> <p>Where: Coral Springs Center for the Arts, 2855 Coral Springs Drive</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $41.87-$63.07</p> <p>Contact: 954/344-5990, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>As far as vocal competition shows go, NBC’s “The Voice” is still the ratings titan. But I’m more drawn to its younger sister, “The Sing-Off,” a showcase of the country’s best a cappella groups that is now five seasons strong. Arguably more demanding and dynamic than “The Voice,” “The Sing-Off” requires not just powerful lead vocalists but uncannily talented backup singers able to create immaculate simulations of guitars, bass, percussions, synths and hip-hop beats all with their vocal chords. For the series’ second national tour, three top acts from “Sing-Offs” past will take the Coral Springs stage, including Street Corner Symphony (they performed the entrancing version of Radiohead’s “Creep” in Season Two), Season Four’s “Voiceplay” (they memorably scaled No Doubt’s “Don’t Speak”) and recent finalists The Exchange, known for their smooth renditions of OneRepublic and Ed Sheeran hits. The tour will feature songs from their television appearances along with new group numbers and a few surprises.</p> <p>FRIDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="326" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/springfield.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Rick Springfield</strong></p> <p>Where: Jazziz Nightlife, 201 Plaza Real, Boca Raton</p> <p>When: 7:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $75-$200</p> <p>Contact: 561/300-0730, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>When you google Rick Springfield’s name lately, the headlines aren’t too flattering. He was literally the butt of many jokes when a lawsuit commenced this past January, incited by a female concertgoer claiming Springfield landed on her, buttocks-first, during a 2004 concert, causing severe injuries. The Gods of Rock won out: Springfield was found not negligent, and with this legal kerfuffle behind him, he’s primed for another year of music, writing and acting. The hitmaker behind “Jessie’s Girl,” who has scored 17 Top 40 hits, is a far cry from the jazz acts that populate this venue, but this appearance will be a special treat for his fans: It’s a “Stripped Down” tour featuring solo acoustic versions of his songs, storytelling and a Q&amp;A session.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/patsycline.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Opening night of “Always … Patsy Cline”</strong></p> <p>Where: Thinking Cap Theatre at the Vanguard, 1501 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale</p> <p>When: 7 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $35</p> <p>Contact: 813/220-1546, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>You could fill an iPod with the number of brilliant musicians who died before their time: In fact, an inordinate number of them lost their lives at age 27. Patsy Cline made it another three years, but her death in a multiple-fatality car crash at age 30 remains a tragic loss. But “Always … Patsy Cline,” a much-produced musical off-Broadway and regionally, is more tribute to the iconic country artist than a mourning, focusing on Cline’s correspondence with devoted fan Louise Seger. And there’s music, of course: 27 songs in all, including such oft-covered smashes as “Crazy,” “I Fall to Pieces” and “Walking After Midnight.” Ann Marie Olson plays Patsy and Sally Bondi portrays Louise in Thinking Cap Theatre’s inaugural production in the Vanguard, a historic church converted into a modish theater. Restaurants like Tap 42 and Red Cow will provide “southern-style fixins” for tonight’s opening reception, and the show runs through March 29.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="307" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/cini_2_468_26.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: “It’s Hard Being Loved By Jerks”</strong></p> <p>Where: Cosford Cinema at University of Miami, 5030 Brunson Drive, Coral Gables</p> <p>When: 8:30 p.m.</p> <p>Cost: $7-$9</p> <p>Contact: 305/284-4861, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Back in 2008, French filmmaker Daniel Leconte premiered the documentary “It’s Hard Being Loved By Jerks” at the Cannes Film Festival, introducing cinemagoers of the world to a French satirical magazine called <em>Charlie Hebdo</em>—and the lawsuits brought to its publishers by Islamist groups in reaction to its 12 covers skewering Muslim extremism or otherwise depicting images of the prophet Mohammed. The movie didn’t get much attention or distribution beyond Cannes, but today, in the wake of the ghastly attacks in Paris, Leconte’s movie feels prescient. American distributor Kino has secured the rights for this limited release of the doc, which follows the trial against the magazine in real-time, exploring issues of freedom of the press and religious fundamentalist through the eyes of lawyers, editors, intellectuals, politicians and more, with hopes that it will foster a dialogue. The movie will also screen at 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 16.</p> <p>FRIDAY TO SUNDAY</p> <p><img alt="" height="228" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/jon-lovitz.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What: Jon Lovitz</strong></p> <p>Where: Palm Beach Improv, 550 S. Rosemary Ave., West Palm Beach</p> <p>When: Various show times</p> <p>Cost: $30 plus two-drink minimum</p> <p>Contact: 561/833-1812, <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Nobody conquers smarm—and then tramples upon it long after it’s dead—quite like Job Lovitz, the sardonic funnyman best known from his sketch work on the late ‘80s heyday of “Saturday Night Live.” Lovitz, then rescued from near obscurity as a member of the Groundlings comedy troupe, became a sought-after impressionist (Harvey Fierstein, Michael Dukakis) as well as an inventor of characters, such as the Pathological Liar, the Master Thespian and Hanukkah Harry, that have become canonical roles in “SNL” lore. These days he’s an intermittent but usually memorable actor (“Happiness” and “Southland Tales” are among his unctuous supporting parts). Moreover, he tours the country as a standup comic—a profession he didn’t pick up, surprisingly, until 2003.</p>John ThomasonMon, 09 Mar 2015 21:20:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicThe Week AheadTheatreUpcoming EventsEat-a Meatball<p><img alt="" height="329" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/meatball.jpg" width="490">They’re small, cute, fluffy and really delicious. Which leaves out those yappy little dogs that half-wit celebutants carry around with them like furry, annoying Hermes bags.</p> <p>What we mean, of course, is meatballs, diminutive orbs of savory goodness that deliver 10 times their size in flavor and soul-warming comfort. And since today truly is National Meatball Day, there’s no better time to treat yourself to some of the succulent little globes. I happen to have a few suggestions here. . .</p> <p><strong>Casa D’Angelo</strong> (171 E. Palmetto Park Rd., Boca Ration, 561/996-1234). Veal and prime beef meatballs served over roasted eggplant and red peppers and scattered with Parmesan.</p> <p><strong>Mastino</strong> (25 NE 2nd Ave., Delray Beach, 561/921-8687). Beef meatball with marinara, ricotta and julienned fresh basil.</p> <p><strong>Meatball Room</strong> (3011 Yamato Rd., Boca Raton, 561/409-4111). All manner of meatballs but try the veal and porcini mushrooms with marsala sauce.</p> <p><strong>Angelo Elia Pizza, Bar &amp; Tapas</strong> (16950 Jog Rd., Delray Beach, 561/381-0037). Veal meatballs with pecorini-romano, tomato sauce and basil.</p> <p><strong>City Cellar Wine Bar &amp; Grill</strong> (700 S Rosemary Ave., West Palm Beach, 561/366-0071). Veal meatballs with marinara, whipped ricotta, basil and focaccia.</p> <p><strong>Mario’s Osteria</strong> (1400 Glades Rd., Boca Raton, 561/239-7000). DIY a pizza with tomato sauce and mozzarella, plus chicken meatballs, artichoke hearts and roasted peppers.</p>Bill CitaraMon, 09 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsMoonshine Over Delray<p><img alt="" height="271" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/moonshine.jpg" width="200">Moonshine—call it by any other name: hooch, corn squeezin’s, white lightning—is  as American as apple pie.</p> <p>And for a little taste of Americana, plus a lot of stories about wild times and wild people, check out what’s happening at <strong>50 Ocean</strong> (50 S. Ocean Blvd., Delray Beach, 561/278-3364) from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 12.</p> <p>Of course, you’ll get to whet (and wet) your whistle too, with several moonshine-inspired cocktails paired with munchies created by Boston’s chef Blake Malatesta. Cost is $30 per person, a portion of which benefits the Delray Beach Historical Society and also includes a signed copy of <em>Moonshine</em>. Only catch is, you need to RSVP by tomorrow (that would be Monday for the calendar-impaired) by calling 561/848-7833.</p> <p> </p>Bill CitaraSun, 08 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsUpcoming EventsFarmers Table New Cocktail Menu<p>Raise a glass to good health at Farmer’s Table in Boca Raton.  The farm-to-table restaurant is taking that toast literally with the new “Garden to Glass” drink menu.</p> <p>These cocktails are made with organic and artisanal liquors and use only the freshest of ingredients.  Herbs and flowers in the drinks are picked from the organically grown garden right in front of the restaurant.  Some of these exotic ingredients may seem unusual, but each one is carefully picked for its nutritional value.</p> <p>The menu also includes non-alcoholic refreshers. A popular favorite is the Okeechobee Sunrise, a Moroccan mint tea with orange juice and a touch of honey. Farmer's Table shared the recipe with us below.</p> <p><img alt="" height="600" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/okeechobee_sunrise_32.jpg" width="400"></p> <p><strong>Okeechobee Sunrise</strong></p> <p>INGREDIENTS</p> <p>Moroccan green mint tea mix:</p> <p>1/3 cup Moroccan green mint tea leaves</p> <p>1 1/2 quarts hot water</p> <p>9 1/2 ounces orange juice</p> <p>1 1/4 ounces honey</p> <p>Beet water ice cubes:</p> <p>Two 3-inch beets</p> <p>64 ounces water</p> <p> </p> <p>PREPARATION</p> <p>Moroccan green mint tea mix:</p> <p>Steep tea leaves in hot water for five minutes.  Strain out leaves and mix in honey and stir until it is dissolved. Stir in orange juice and allow to cool in a refrigerator.</p> <p>Beet water ice cubes:</p> <p>Rinse off beets to remove any soil or residue. Cut the root tails and the cap with the greens off of the beets. Slice the beets into 2-3 inch chunks. Add the water to a blender and pulse on low until beets are broken down into small segments. Pour mixuture into ice cube tray and freeze for six hours.</p> <p>Once everything is properly chilled, pour the Moroccan green mint tea over the beet water ice cubes and garnish with a mint sprig.</p> <p><em>Check out our May/June issue for another Farmer’s Table Garden to Glass recipe.</em></p>Annie PizzutelliFri, 06 Mar 2015 12:15:00 +0000 Staff Picks: where to shop, work out and more<p><strong>Mario's Market</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="316" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-06_at_11.09.03_am.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Marie Speed, Group Editor</em><br> “In my ongoing search for small private markets, I was delighted to find Mario's Market, a full-on Italian market complete with meats, bakery, pastas, sauces, wines, prepared foods, herbs—the works. And at un-Boca prices. Small, friendly, everything you need in whole foods without the designer nonsense.”</p> <p>(14816 S. Military Trail, Delray Beach)</p> <p><strong>Flywheel</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/flywheel.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Meshi Shoshana, Events + Sales Coordinator</em></p> <p>“I love going to Maria's class at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. Getting up at 5 each morning drains me out, but she still manages to pump me up at the end of the day. It’s 45 minutes where I can just put my cell phone away and have my time to zone out and breathe. She plays all sorts of music from Ricky Martin to the latest Iggy Azalea. This is truly a class you don't want to miss.”</p> <p>(2200 Glades Road, Boca Raton // <a href=""></a>)</p> <p><strong>Eleven Salon &amp; Spa</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/elevensalon.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Stefanie Cainto, Web Editor</em></p> <p>“Bit the bullet and got my never-colored, blacker than black hair done in a mild ombre/bayalage type do. My stylist, Walky, was fabulous, patient and knowledgeable. She should win an award for her attention to detail and genuine, professional knowledge – no seriously, I was there well after hours because she wanted to get the color right. ” <em>Note: </em>the salon runs a special for first time customers. $79 for cut, style, color and blowdry. Additional charges will apply for anything extra.</p> <p>(1440 N. Federal Highway,  Delray Beach // <a href=""></a>)</p> <p><strong>Bambini’s Garden Pizzeria</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="359" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bambinis.jpeg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Picked by Karen Jacaruso, Account Executive</em></p> <p>“The best pizza I've had since moving to South Florida 20 years ago. Bambinis is owned by the same family who owns The Boys Market, Grandmas Bakery, and the Girls Strawberry Picking Patch – which I also endorse. Anything these people touch is a success and GOOD!!! The pizza at Bambinis is real "up north style" pizza. I lived in New York City for 10 years, so that is quite the compliment. The crust is crispy and flavorful, and the blend of cheeses they use are perfection!!”</p> <p>(14466 S. Military Trail, Delray Beach // <a href=""></a>)</p> <center><em><a href="/blog/tag/staff-picks" target="_blank">For more staff picks, click here.</a></em></center><center><em><br></em></center>magazineFri, 06 Mar 2015 11:18:00 +0000 of the Arts 2015: Your Detailed Event Guide<p>It's finally here! Festival of the Arts Boca's ninth installment is full of literary luminaries and classical virtuosi, technology experts and international dancers, Jets and Sharks. Here is our preview.</p> <p><img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/west-side-story-2.jpeg" width="400"></p> <p>7:30 p.m. March 6: The Festival is bringing back its live-scored movie nights, by popular demand. This year it’ll be <strong>“West Side Story,”</strong> Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins’s Oscar-winning adaptation of the great Broadway musical, which made stars out of Natalie Wood and Rita Moreno. The Sharks will vie against the Jets in vivid CinemaScope and Technicolor on the Amphitheater’s massive video screen, as Jayce Ogren conducts the Festival Orchestra through Leonard Bernstein’s iconic music.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="313" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/wfpicks-47-chinsm-640x500.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>7:30 p.m. March 7: Arguably the biggest “name” at next year’s Fest is <strong>Bela Fleck</strong>, an impossibly eclectic musician who has done more with the banjo that most artists could do with a full orchestra. The acoustic string player has employed his instrument in familiar (bluegrass, folk, country) and less familiar (jazz, pop, classical) environs, and in the process he’s been nominated in more Grammy categories than any other musician, winning 13 of them since 1995. His Festival performance will feature vocals by his wife Abigail Washburn, a formidable Americana musician in her own right, whom he met at a square dance at which he was performing (how awesome is that?).</p> <p>4 p.m. March 8: In the world of popular publishing, series mysteries and series sci-fi are commonplace, but dramatic literature presented in a series format is less ordinary. This is the approach Pulitzer Prize-winning author <strong>Richard Ford </strong>has taken, on and off, for that past 28 years, with his novels about Frank Bascombe, a novelist turned sportswriter turned realtor who is navigating the reality of aging. Like Ford himself, his protagonist is nearing his seventh decade, and he is more candid than ever in Ford’s latest installment, <em>Let Me Be Frank With You</em>. Ford will discuss the book, which finds Frank dealing with a spate of issues in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.</p> <p>7:30 p.m. March 8: We love to see that the Festival is continuing to cater to lovers of dance, even though its founders have admitted it isn’t the best moneymaker. Perhaps next year’s stellar dance troupe, the <strong>Stars of the International Ballet</strong>, will have enough jetes and plies to turn this tradition around. Ten dancers from leading international ballet companies will perform in this exclusive program, including Daniel Ulbricht, principal dancer at New York City Ballet; Greta Hodgkinson, principal dancer at National Ballet of Canada; and two estimable guest artists, Adiarys Almeida and Joseph Gatti.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="210" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/cancer-biographer300.png" width="300"></p> <p>7 p.m. March 9: We may not have found a cure for cancer yet, but if and when we do, don’t be surprised if <strong>Siddhartha Mukherjee</strong> will be its discoverer. A hematologist, oncologist and assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University, Mukherjee is a peerless physician with impeccable credentials, and he’s devoted his life’s work to eliminating the scourge of cancer. His work on the behavior of stem cells and cancer cells has led to a couple of ongoing clinical trials, but his most important contribution to date is his 2010 book <em>The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer</em>, which won a Pulitzer Prize, plaudits from Oprah Winfrey, and—get this—an inclusion on <em>Time</em>’s 100 most influential English-language books published since 1923. </p> <p>7 p.m. March 10: There are enough voices in the doom-laden commentariat who insists that technology is making us dumber, more compliant, more distracted, less creative: Shakespeare could never have gotten his thoughts across in 140 characters, right? In this respect, <strong>Clive Thompson</strong> is an outlier: He believes technology is making us smarter, and he has plenty of empirical data, historical precedents and groundbreaking ideas to convince us. This Canadian native, <em>Wired</em> and <em>New York Times</em> contributor, and author of<em> Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better</em> will lecture on his radical optimism about the state of technology today and tomorrow.</p> <p><img alt="" height="285" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/18479270.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>7 p.m. March 11: Terrorism, climate change, politics and America’s stature in the world are all part of <strong>Thomas Friedman</strong>’s copious bailiwick. The insightful, twice-weekly <em>New York Times</em> columnist, who has thrice captured a Pulitzer Prize, is an outspoken advocate of “radical centrism,” a political stance that has, unsurprisingly, earned him enemies on both wings—which is usually a sign that he’s doing something right. His books <em>The World is Flat</em> and <em>Hot, Flat and Crowded</em> have elevated national debates about globalization and energy policy, and his latest book, which doubles as his topic for his Festival lecture, is <em>That Used to be Us</em>, an account of U.S. global decline and the possibilities for the nation’s comeback.</p> <p>7 p.m. March 12: <strong>Michael Grunwald</strong>, a journalist for Politico and a senior national correspondent at Time, is one South Florida’s most astute journalists. He’s also hard to pin down politically, defending President Obama’s efforts at handling the global economic crisis (while criticizing obstructionist Republicans), while taking a more right-leaning stance regarding secrecy and drone strikes. But his Festival lecture, “Saving Paradise,” will address a topic most Floridians can get behind: the preservation of the Everglades.</p> <p>7:30 p.m. March 13: Even if you’re familiar with such Mozart compositions as the Violin Concerto in G major, the Piano Concerto in C major, and the Flute Concerto in D major, you’ll want to attend this evening’s Mozart Gala, to hear these iconic pieces performed by some of the classical world’s brightest luminaries. <strong>James Galway</strong>, aka the “Man With the Golden Flute,” has performed his woodwind for everyone from Roger Waters to director Peter Jackson (for the “Lord of the Rings” soundtrack), selling more than 30 million copies in his storied career; pianist <strong>Conrad Tao</strong> is just 20, but he is already an old musical soul, having won eight consecutive ASCAP Young Composer awards and having achieved distinction as a U.S. Presidential Scholar of the Arts; and<strong>Arnaud Sussman</strong>, a French-born violinist, spent two years as Itzhak Perlman’s teaching assistant, and has since performed at venues ranging from Lincoln Center to the Louvre. Expect to hear a collection of seasonal St. Paddy’s Day music in addition to the Mozart celebration.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="352" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/070506.franks.jpg" width="380"></p> <p>4 p.m. March 14: Yet another esteemed Pulitzer Prize winner, <strong>Lucinda Franks</strong>has penned features for <em>The New Yorker</em> and <em>The Atlantic</em> and is a former staff writer for <em>The New York Times</em>. She was also a radical during a time when it fairly dangerous to be a radical; in 1964, she helped found a chapter of the Students for a Democratic Society, and she won her Pulitzer years later thanks to a sympathetic portrait of the death of a Weathermen activist. She would make an unlikely bride to the much older, high-powered prosecutor Robert Morgenthau, a 37-year marriage she chronicles in her latest memoir, <em>Timeless</em>. The book has been praised for its novelistic style, uncomfortably intimate candor and eye-opening revelations.</p> <p> <img alt="" height="267" src="/site_media/uploads/November%202014/207-the-young-peoples-chorus.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>7:30 p.m. March 14: Some 26 years ago, Francisco J. Nunez launched the <strong>Young People’s Chorus of New York City,</strong> a multicultural hub for youth singers to reach their potentials, and its stature continues to grow. Its choristers have performed in Carnegie Hall and the White House; have sung in languages ranging from French and Russian to Czech, Swahili and Inuit; and have sung in genres spanning a spectrum of classical, world music, gospel, folk and pop. In what should be a special event, the chorus will perform a program of contemporary songs in the first half of the program, and will return in the second half to perform Beethoven’s 9th symphony with help from the Master Chorale of South Florida, the Festival Orchestra Boca, soloists and conductor Constantine Kitsopoulous.</p> <p>4 p.m. March 15: Peabody Award winner and classical-music radio host <strong>Martin Goldsmith</strong> has suffered a soberingly close relationship with Nazi Germany. His parents, Gunther and Rosemarie, were a flutist and violinist, respectively, in his native Germany. From 1933, they played in the Judischer Kuturbund, an all-Jewish orchestra maintained by the Nazis, an experience Goldsmith documented in his first book, <em>The Inexhaustible Symphony</em>. His second book,<em>The Beatles Come to America</em>, proved a respite from tragedy, but this year he has re-explored Nazi history with <em>Alex’s Wake</em>, his account of a luxury liner containing 900 Jewish refugees that was forced back to Europe in 1939.</p> <p><em>The fest is currently welcoming "early bird" ticket buyers. Call the box office at 866/571-2787 or visit</em></p>John ThomasonFri, 06 Mar 2015 09:00:00 +0000 & EventsMusicUpcoming EventsTilted Kilt Debuts in Boca<p>If you want a little nudge-nudge, wink-wink with your boneless chicken wings, cold beer and TV sports, then look up Boca’s new <a href="" target="_blank">Tilted Kilt</a> (<em>3320 Airport Rd., 561/338-5458</em>) where the sizzle that sells the steak comes in the form of shapely young women servers clad (if you can call it that) in short-short skirts and tight, midrift-baring tops.</p> <p><img alt="" height="533" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/tiltkilt.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>The Irish pub-themed “breastaurant” is next door to the Cinemark Palace Theater and features a pubby, masculine decor with lots of dark wood and TVs, a big bar and plenty of tables crammed under a tall ceiling with exposed ductwork and industrial-style light fixtures.</p> <p>The menu nods at a few Irish staples, like shepherd’s pie, Irish stew and fish ‘n’ chips, and is filled out by a roster of all-American bar favorites, from assorted wings, “Big Arse” burgers, wraps, sandwiches and entrees.</p>Bill CitaraFri, 06 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 & ReviewsFashion Forward: Coming to Boca - Versace, Kendra Scott and Saks OFF Fifth<p><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/kendrascott.png" width="490"> </p> <p><strong>Glitz and Glamour:</strong> If you’ve been to Mizner Park recently, you’ve probably already seen the branded boards set up around what is soon to be Boca’s first Kendra Scott brick-and-mortar store. From bridal accessories to statement necklaces, this jewelry brand has all your bold jewelry needs. The store is slated to open in May.</p> <p><strong>Italy in Boca</strong>: “COMING SOON to Town Center at Boca Raton: VERSACE!” It’s the Facebook post from Town Center at Boca Raton that made us do a double take. We’re working on getting you more details. Stay tuned to our shopping blog for more news.</p> <p><strong>Big Savings:</strong> The Hudson Bay Company – owners of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord &amp; Taylor – really found a home in Boca Raton. Come end of March, the company is opening up yet another Boca store, this time: Saks OFF Fifth. Check our shopping blog next week for details on the grand opening and preview party.</p>Stefanie CaintoFri, 06 Mar 2015 00:00:00 +0000 NewsSeasonal Finds: Raw Honeycomb<h3>NEW BLOG SERIES: Our local foodie dishes on a versatile and all-natural treat.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="325" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/honeycomb1.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The buzz around the cheese department at Whole Foods in Boca, as well as at The Cheese Course in Mizner Park, has nothing to do with curds and whey. Raw honeycomb is in season, and it’s popping up at stores across South Florida where artisanal cheeses, wines and breads are sold. </p> <p>All of which begs the question: What do you do with it?</p> <p>Raw honeycomb comes straight from the beehive, its cells oozing with the concentrated nectar that bees extract from flowers. The wax is 100-percent edible, natural and bursting with unrefined, full-bodied honey. If swallowing wax isn’t your thing, simply chew until the honey is extracted and discard the remains. Flavors vary slightly and are reflected by the type of flower from which the bees collect their nectar. One of the most popular flavors found in South Florida is orange blossom, which, as the name suggests, has sweet citrus notes. </p> <p>The chief benefit in buying and consuming honeycomb, aside from its aesthetic appeal (talk about a conversation starter at the dining table!), is that the product is as raw and real as it gets. The unfiltered honey is some of the best tasting and healthiest available in stores. Unlike many brands sold in supermarkets that have been pasteurized and diluted by processed sweeteners, raw honey maintains its natural vitamins, antioxidants and nutrients. </p> <p><img alt="" height="478" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/honeycomb_on_toast2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Here are just a few ways to enjoy it:</p> <p>• Grab a square of raw honeycomb and serve it on a warm piece of toast. For an added kick, sprinkle lightly with some flakey sea salt.</p> <p>• Spread it over any of the following: cheese, warm cereal, waffles, warm biscuits.</p> <p>• Mix it with yogurt or with a bowl of berries.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong>About Amanda Jane</strong></p> <p><em>Amanda Jane is the creator of the food blog <a href="" target="_blank">Seasonally Jane</a>, a creative space where she shares her love of seasonally inspired cooking through original recipes, photography and writing.  Seasonally Jane celebrates the use of peak-season fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on organic whole foods and unique ingredients. Amanda launched her blog in September 2014 and is based in Lighthouse Point.</em></p>Amanda JaneThu, 05 Mar 2015 09:10:00 +0000 & ReviewsThe Best Mommy Concierge Services<p>Boca Raton, Florida…where shopping is a pleasure! Unless you hate doing it yourself. And that’s okay because Boca moms now have the option to hire someone to get the job, whatever it may be, done.</p> <p>Need your hair cut, but can’t leave the house because baby is sick? No problem! Want fresh flowers from Whole Foods, but dread the thought of braving the Glades/15th Avenue intersection? Consider it complete!</p> <p>From groceries to hairstyling, here’s your <em>Boca Mom Talk</em> on the best local mommy concierge services …</p> <p><strong>CHIC MOM Hair Services</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/chic_mom_logo.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><a href="">CHIC MOM Hair Services</a>, a convenient in-home full service salon experience for moms, is a “lifesaver for many mommies,” says stylist and founder Caitlin Flood in an email interview. “It can get expensive to get your hair done and pay for a babysitter while you’re at the salon for 2+ hours, so I’m trying to eliminate that headache by coming to YOU.”<br> With reasonable prices and convenient appointment times, CHIC MOM is also a one-stop shop! She will not only cut, color and style mom’s hair, but the whole family’s– husbands/partners and kids alike. Services start at $15.</p> <p>CHIC MOM Hair Services covers Boynton Beach south to Deerfield Beach. Book by calling: 571/261-0611.</p> <p><strong>Green Girl Groceries</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="317" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/greengirlgroceries.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><a href="">Green Girl Groceries</a> will take your never-ending shopping list and run with it. Literally.</p> <p class="font8">With a background in hospitality management plus fabulous organizational skills, Green Girl will personally shop for your family and deliver groceries and other items straight to your door.  Employees will visit <em>Publix, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods</em> and <em>Target</em> on your behalf. It’s super easy to submit your shopping list and choose your delivery date/time frame online or over the phone! <em>(All orders have a $7 delivery fee plus a service fee of 15 percent of the total grocery bill. If you need items from multiple stores, there’s an additional $5-fee per store.)</em></p> <p class="font8">Green Girl Groceries covers Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Parkland, Coconut Creek, Deerfield Beach and Pompano. Book by visiting: <a href=""></a>.<strong> </strong></p> <p><strong>24Seven Concierge</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/24seven.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><a href="">24Seven Concierge</a> can pretty much do it all for the busy Boca mom…from helping families move and supervising deliveries or home maintenance appointments, running errands and shopping to sorting out health documents, cleaning out closets and paying bills. Their goal is to “fill in the gaps when there aren’t enough hours in the day!”</p> <p><em>Boca Mom Talk Note: I find myself saying that all the time now as a mom.</em></p> <p>I love this service because one call does it all. They also have vetted vendor lists, and service fees are based on the skill level required to accomplish the task <em>(average: $50-$65 per hour).</em> And just as the name implies, the pros at 24Seven Concierge are available any time you need them. </p> <p>24Seven Concierge covers most of South Florida. Book by visiting: <a href=""></a></p> <p>By hiring help, you’re giving yourself the gift of extra time! So go and get that much needed manicure and snuggle your kiddos for a few extra minutes, because you’re letting the pros take care of it today.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><strong></strong><a href="/blog/tag/boca-mom-talk/" target="_blank">For more from Boca Mom Talk, click here.</a></p> <p><strong>About Michelle</strong></p> <p><em><strong></strong>Michelle Olson-Rogers, a native to Boca, is the founder of <a href="" target="_blank"></a><strong>, </strong>a lifestyle website for the stylish &amp; modern South Florida Mommy. <strong>Modern Boca Mom</strong> features events for both mom and kids, activities, classes, fitness, dining and shopping options as well as a weekly Mompreneur spotlight! A Mompreneur herself, Michelle truly believes that working moms (and dads!) instill an unparalleled work ethic in their kids. She and her husband Andrew have one daughter, Avery.</em></p>Michelle Olson-RogersThu, 05 Mar 2015 08:58:00 +0000 Gold Cup Polo Tournament<p>It’s polo season in Wellington. That means big hats, Sunday brunch and starting this Sunday, March 8, the <strong>Piaget Gold Cup Polo Tournament.</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="487" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/polo_girl_pink_champagne.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The March 8 game is the first of three consecutive matches for the three-week tournament. The next two will be held on March 15 and 22 – all at the International Polo Club Palm Beach (<em>3667 120<sup>th</sup> Ave. South, Wellington</em>).</p> <p>Brunch begins at 2 p.m., with the match commencing at 3 p.m. and the trophy presentation at 5:15.</p> <p>Tickets start at $10 and can be purchased at <a href=""></a></p>Stefanie CaintoThu, 05 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 EventsThe Chapman files and other notes<h3>Chapman backstories</h3> <p><img alt="" height="224" src="/site_media/uploads/voteimages.jpg" width="225"></p> <p>Frank Chapman influenced the Boca Raton City Council election even before he became a candidate.</p> <p>Late last year, Chapman commissioned two mailers that attacked the business record of Armand Grossman, who had filed papers in November to run for Seat C, which Constance Scott is leaving because of term limits. The mailers cited penalties by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation as a reason that voters couldn’t trust Grossman. He dropped out.</p> <p>Chapman’s own record, however, includes incidents that drew the attention of professional examiners, regulators and government agencies and involve him directly or indirectly. They are contained in documents that I received from a supporter of Jamie Sauer, one of Chapman’s two opponents in Tuesday’s election.</p> <p>Since Chapman raised the issue of personal conduct regarding another candidate, these incidents deserve a similar review. The first began in 1993, after Chapman—who was living in Portage, Ohio—passed the Ohio Bar Exam and applied for admission to the Bar. His application was denied because, according to documents filed with the Ohio Supreme Court, Chapman had been unable “to prove his good character and fitness to practice law.”</p> <p>The problem, according to the documents, stemmed from a civil lawsuit by the Ohio Attorney General’s Office against Chapman, his father and others “for alleged violations of the Ohio Sales Practices Act. . .” Chapman’s father owned a carpet and upholstery cleaning business, and Chapman had told the Attorney General’s Office that he would testify against his father. Chapman had worked “periodically” for the business between 1983 and 1991, when he was 24.</p> <p>In an affidavit for the attorney general’s office, according to the documents, Chapman said he taught new employees in his father’s company a sales plan taken from his uncle’s carpet/upholstery business in Florida. Under that plan, “salespersons who increased the amount of a quoted price. . .received a 28 percent commission on the increased price.” Salespersons were “directed” to push estimates higher and then offer “illusory discounts.” Technicians “routinely drycleaned fabrics that did not require drycleaning, in order to increase the contract price.”</p> <p>In addition, Chapman’s “personal expenses, including law school tuition, were paid by the business,” and Chapman “transferred motor vehicles used in the business and titled in his name to fictitious corporations.” Chapman did not admit or deny wrongdoing. Nevertheless, he was “permanently enjoined from certain consumer practices, including performing substandard work, bait-and-switch tactics and high-pressure sales techniques or tactics prohibited by law. . .” In addition to testifying, Chapman had to pay restitution of $2,500, forfeit a computer system and pay a $20,000 fine, $7,500 of which was suspended.</p> <p>After that, the Board of Commissioners on Character and Fitness appointed a hearing panel to rule on Chapman’s application to the Bar. At the hearing, according to the documents, Chapman “admitted having taught techniques for selling unneeded services” and to never getting a W-2 or 1099 for his work with the company. He “stated that in August or September 1992 he began to believe certain aspects of the business were wrong, and he sought to disassociate himself from the business after that time.” The panel, though, found Chapman’s “1992 conversion ‘from his previous pattern of highly questionable ethical and outright illegal behavior. . .too recent to be convincing.’ ” Chapman’s application was denied. He appealed, and got the time for when he could reapply moved up. Chapman eventually was admitted to the Ohio Bar. He is a Member in Good Standing of the Florida Bar, though he has been calling himself a “retired lawyer.” His listed work address is his home address.</p> <p>The second incident began in 2002, when Chapman was running his own law firm in Ohio. The firm took the case of a couple that had been injured in a car crash as passengers. The case was assigned to one of the lawyers in Chapman’s firm.</p> <p>The coupled later sued the lawyer, Chapman and the firm for overcharging them on fees. The case was settled when the firm reduced its fees. The firm also paid the couple roughly $20,000 from its malpractice insurance.</p> <p>In 2009, the lawyer was reprimanded for misconduct in that case. His defense in part was that Chapman controlled the fee schedule for the firm. The Board of Commissioners and Grievances of the Ohio Supreme Court, however, took no action against Chapman. I reached the lawyer by phone this week. Of the incident, he said he was “not interested in discussing it.”</p> <p>The third incident began in 2004, when Chapman challenged a ruling by the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals that he had failed to pay roughly $27,000 in taxes on the purchase of a 43-foot yacht.</p> <p>Chapman claimed that the tax had been paid through the dealer, but the tax board ruled that Chapman had “failed to provide any evidence of any tax paid.” Chapman claimed that the boat had been in Florida, not Ohio, but the board ruled that Chapman had listed Cleveland as the home port, and that the boat had been docked in Port Clinton, east of Toledo. In 2005, the board rejected Chapman’s appeal.</p> <p>The fourth incident began early in the last decade, when Chapman’s law firm got what would be a $35 million contract with the federal government to sell foreclosed homes in Ohio and Michigan owned by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.</p> <p>Disputes between the firm and the government led them to sue each other, with Chapman claiming that the government breached its contact and the government claiming that Chapman violated the False Claims Act. In November 2013, U.S. Court of Federal Claims Judge Marian Horn ruled that Chapman’s firm had committed fraud related to inspections of four homes and fined the firm $44,000. Chapman appealed the fine, and lost. This week, he told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that he planned to drop the appeal, though he denies the allegations in the government’s lawsuit.</p> <p>Wednesday afternoon, I met with Chapman to discuss these incidents. He did not want me to tape the interview.</p> <p>Of the work for his father’s company, Chapman said, “You don’t know anything is deceptive when you grow up in it.” He says it happened when he was young. The whole thing “made me a better person.” Regarding the lawyer in his firm who was reprimanded, Chapman said, “He got himself in trouble and tried to blame anybody he could. Regarding the taxes on his boat, Chapman claims that the board mixed up two Bertram yachts – one that he was selling and one that he was buying. “I showed them the evidence,” he said, “and they wouldn’t believe it." Regarding his dispute with the federal government, Chapman portrays himself as a contractor trying to play fair and do good work when there were accusations that the Department of Housing and Urban Development was steering contracts to friends of HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson. His firm and the government traded lawsuits over the contract for years.</p> <p>Chapman notes that while the judge’s 78-page ruling singled out four houses, his firm dealt with roughly 20,000 houses in all. The judge, Chapman speculates, thought that “we had been compensated enough. And she wrote (the ruling) in such a way that we lost the appeal.” He added, “ I didn’t want to write another check for $100,000 or $200,000 over a fine of $44,000.”</p> <p>In 2012, when Chapman ran unsuccessfully against then-incumbent Anthony Majhess, the Majhess campaign sent out mailers raising the Bar admission and tax issue. Neither, though, got a thorough look in the press. The legal dispute with the government didn’t get any attention, probably because the case had not been settled. The record and Chapman’s response now are there for voters ahead of Election Day on Tuesday.</p> <h3>Netanyahu follow-up</h3> <p>If Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech before Congress on Tuesday contained nothing little new about Iran, it produced the visuals Netanyahu wanted for Israeli voters with elections set for March 17.</p> <p>Those voters saw American lawmakers regularly applaud Netanyahu. They saw Netanyahu, as he invoked the Holocaust, salute Elie Wiesel, the author of “Night,” which most people consider the seminal work on the Nazis’ attempt to exterminate the Jews. Surely no one, including Netanyahu, believed his comment that the speech wasn’t intended to be political.</p> <p>As they were before the speech, local lawmakers and national Jewish groups with offices in this area are trying to balance support for Israel and the Jewish people with the prime minister’s attempt to influence U.S. foreign policy.</p> <p>The American Jewish Committee, which issued no statement before the speech, praised Netanyahu’s “clarion call for achieving the best possible deal to prevent a nuclear Iran.” The key word there is “possible.” Members of the Obama administration aren’t the only ones who believe that Netanyahu’s demand that Iran have no uranium enrichment capacity is impossible. The Bush administration tried that all-or-nothing approach in 2003 and failed. AJC Director David Harris said, “We urge everyone to read the Prime Minister’s speech and consider it on its merits.”</p> <p>A spokeswoman for Rep. Lois Frankel issued this noncommittal statement: “Our commitment to strengthening the U.S.-Israeli relationship and preventing a nuclear Iran has always and should continue to receive the overwhelming bipartisan support this critical issue deserves.” By mid-afternoon Wednesday, I had not received a response to my question about whether Frankel agrees with Netanyahu that Obama would “sacrifice the future for the present” with a deal. Unlike some Jewish Democrats, Frankel attended the speech.</p> <p>So did Deutch, who also is a Democrat and also is Jewish. His statement went further than Frankel’s. In it, Deutch said, “Congress must play an increasingly active and vocal role in negotiations over ending Iran’s nuclear program as the deadline (this month for a framework agreement; June 30 for a final deal) for negotiations to reach an acceptable compromise quickly approaches.” After Netanyahu’s speech, that role is certain. Whether that role will be helpful or harmful is uncertain.       </p> <h3>Anniversary note     </h3> <p>Friday marks the one-year anniversary of the blog. Thanks to Boca Raton magazine for allowing me to do it, and thanks to those who have been following it.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzThu, 05 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunity10 Things We Love About Old School Square<p><img alt="" height="333" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/oldschoolsquare.jpg" width="490"></p> <center>Watercolor by Anne Marie Brown</center> <p>■ <em>Free Friday Concerts:</em> Where else can you go to chill out after a long work week and hear great music without having to shell out any cash?</p> <p>■ <em>Holiday Carousel</em>: It’s mostly for kids, but it attracts grown-ups taking a stroll after dinner who may or may not have had a few too many glasses of wine.</p> <p>■ <em>Vintage Gym:</em> You can’t go to the gym and not look up at the scribbling of students from long ago who dared to autograph the rafters.</p> <p>■ <em>Old School Beerfest Each May</em>: With nearly 100 craft beers, what’s not to like?</p> <p>■ <em>Special Events:</em> Name a popular event in Delray Beach—the 100-foot Christmas tree, Delray Affair, Cinco De Mayo and even the Palm Beach Poetry Fest—and you’ll find it happening at Delray Center for Arts.</p> <p>■ <em>Performances and Lectures at the Crest Theatre:</em> With just 323 seats, the Crest Theatre is the perfect place to see musicals like “Titanic”; listen to the first lady of musical theater, Elaine Paige; or hear Joan Collins dish about life in Hollywood</p> <p>■ <em>Cool Contemporary Exhibits at the Cornell Museum of art and American Culture:</em> Over the course of 25 years, Gloria Adams and her team brought outstanding art and cultural exhibits to the halls of the museum. Nothing, however, topped “Coloring Outside the Lines,” a crayon art exhibit in 2011. Who knew you could do so much with crayons?</p> <p>■ <em>Easy, Inexpensive Parking:</em> With the garage right next door to Old School Square, parking is always easy and just a few bucks—plus, you can walk to any of the downtown restaurants after a show.</p> <p>■ <em>The Sense of Community:</em> Maybe it’s the buildings, maybe it’s the people, but you can’t help feel like you’re a member of Delray Beach’s tight-knit community when you walk through the doors of any of the three buildings that make up the center.</p> <p>■ <em>The Staff:</em> From president Joe Gillie on down, each member of the staff at the Delray Center for the Arts shares a passion for what they do and for Delray Beach as well.</p> <center><a href="/blog/2015/03/04/25-years-of-old-school-square" target="_blank">FOR MORE ABOUT OLD SCHOOL SQUARE, CLICK HERE.</a></center>magazineWed, 04 Mar 2015 11:17:00 +0000 Beach25 Years of Old School Square<h3>How an old schoolhouse became the cornerstone of the arts in Delray Beach.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="333" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/oldschoolsquare.jpg" width="490"></p> <center>Watercolor by Anne Marie Brown</center> <p>The opening of Delray’s Cornell Museum of Art in March of 1990 marked much more than the culmination of years of hard work. It also marked an important first step in the renaissance of Delray Beach, a town on the edge of decline throughout the late 1980s.</p> <p>Western migration and the opening of regional malls in Boca Raton and Boynton Beach had left Atlantic Avenue storefronts vacant, and led Palm Beach County School District leaders to close the historic school buildings—a 1913 elementary school, a 1925 high school and a vintage gymnasium—in downtown Delray. Fenced off for several years, the overgrown property at Swinton and Atlantic avenues was neglected until then-mayor Doak Campbell approached Delray Beach Historical Society leaders—including the society’s then-vice president, Frances Bourque—with an idea to restore the historic buildings and transform them into a cultural center.</p> <p>Delray Center for the Arts at Old School Square, like the phoenix, has risen and evolved into a monument for community spirit, thanks to intense lobbying of state officials and grassroots fundraising efforts—such as the auctioning off of street names and an old-fashioned prom in the Vintage Gymnasium. Despite naysayers in the community who argued the project was a waste of money, organizers persisted and today, Old School Square—with its theater, art museum, gymnasium and outdoor pavilion—has been transformed into Delray Beach’s modern day town square, a gathering place week after week for events representing the town’s diverse cultural activities.</p> <h3>Five Who Helped Make The Square What It Is Today </h3> <p><strong>Frances Bourque</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="334" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/frances_bourque.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Founder of old School Square</p> <p>Considered the mother of Old School Square, Frances Bourque was driven by a strong sense of community to help create what she calls today the heart and soul of Delray Beach. Leading the efforts to preserve the historic school buildings in downtown, Bourque brought the community together, first by persuading state historic preservation officials to provide a $350,000 initial renovation grant, and later by highlighting every successful step to prove that the dream would indeed become a reality.</p> <p>As the chair of the committee charged with making the project a reality, Bourque traveled to Tallahassee several times to receive funding and a historic designation from the state’s Bureau of Historic Preservation. Guided by a passion for helping to restore a sense of community to Delray Beach, Bourque says there was never a point where she became discouraged nor thought of giving up the goal of providing a vital service to a community weathering economic hard times. The organization’s first president, Bourque remains on the board of directors and sees the Delray Beach Center for the Arts as still evolving, with much more yet to do.</p> <p><em>“I loved everything we were able to do as a community. It was magical. There were times when we wondered how we were going to make it happen, but we always found answers. We never quit believing it would work.”</em></p> <p><strong>Joe Gillie</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="318" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/joegillie.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>President and CeO Of delray Center fOr the arts at Old sChOOl square sinCe 1992</p> <p>The face of the Square for decades, Gillie had been handling public relations for the Caldwell Theatre in Boca Raton in 1990 when he was asked to join the board of Old School Square. A short time later, he was tapped to lead the organization as it evolved to reflect changes in the arts.</p> <p>Gillie, who is retiring this fall, led the organization’s transformation into a major cultural center in South Florida. He takes pride in never missing a performance when he’s in town and also in helping guide the project to national recognition—first as part of Delray’s designation as an All-America City in 1993 and later, when it was honored at the Smithsonian Institution for how it used the arts to affect positive community change. Gillie is credited for bringing quality performances and programming to the Delray Center for the Arts and for shepherding its constant growth from a one-building art museum to a multifaceted cultural center.</p> <p><em>“The Delray Beach Center for the Arts is a center for everyone. It is a safe place where all in the community can come and express an opinion. It is truly common ground.”</em></p> <p><strong>Bob Chapin</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="331" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/robert_chapin.jpg" width="489"></p> <p>President Emeritus of the Delray Center for the Arts</p> <p>A longtime Delray resident, Bob Chapin joined the board of Old School Square in 1989, before the first building opened. A respected lawyer and former member of the city council, Chapin served as the board’s third president from 1997 to 2003, bringing his strong business sense and fundraising background to the table.</p> <p>During his eight years as president, Chapin helped create a stable structure for the organization. He arranged to have a financial professional join the staff and used his local connections to help secure much-needed funding. </p> <p><em>“Old School Square went from a startup cultural organization to a regional cultural facility. It mirrored the transformation of Delray Beach from a sleepy ‘Village by the Sea’ to a trendsetting community.”</em></p> <p><strong>Gloria Adams</strong></p> <p><img alt="" height="390" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/gloria_adams.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Director of the Cornell Museum of Art and American Culture from 1990 to 2014</p> <p>A painter and well-known member of the local arts community, Gloria Adams first became involved in Old School Square as a volunteer in 1988, during the early planning stages. She became director of the Cornell Museum prior to its opening and spent 25 years helping to bring innovative and creative exhibits to the museum, which specialized in American culture as well as art. Among Adams’ favorite exhibits were a mid-1990s collection of hand-carved birds and another featuring carousels. Adams, who retired last year, says that what started as a job ended up being a passion.</p> <p><em>“Members of the arts community were so excited to have a venue to show their work, and I was so excited to be able to provide that for them.”</em></p> <p><strong>Bob Currie</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="390" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bob_currie.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Architect for Old School Square And Board Member</p> <p>When it came to the selection of an architect to help with the planning and design of Old School Square, Bob Currie was a natural. Currie’s role went beyond designing buildings. In the early years, he was integral in helping to determine the direction Old School Square would take as coordinators set out to create an organization to meet the community’s cultural needs.</p> <p>Currie worked closely with founder Frances Bourque, traveling to Tallahassee to help share the vision for Old School Square and to lobby state officials for a much-needed historic designation, which was required before state officials would consider issuing a historic preservation grant. He has been involved in six different phases of plans, from the original design and master plan to designing the outdoor pavilion, all requiring a commitment to the historic heritage of the buildings while at the same time providing functionality.</p> <p><em>“I love this town, and there’s never been a more important project for this town than Old School Square. It was the spark that turned this town around.”</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/2015/03/04/10-things-we-love-about-old-school-square/" target="_blank">CLICK HERE FOR A LIST OF 10 THINGS WE LOVE ABOUT OLD SCHOOL SQUARE.</a></center> <h3>Five Others Who Helped the Square</h3> <p><strong>Bill Branning:</strong> Currently board chair for the Delray Center for the Arts, Branning helped lead the physical restoration project, first as the original estimator while at Tom Head Construction and later through his own company, BSA Corporation, which was the building contractor for much of the restoration.</p> <p><strong>Doak Campbell:</strong> As mayor in the late 1980s, Campbell had the idea to transform three historic school buildings into a cultural and historic center. He later helped persuade town leaders to provide financial support for the project.</p> <p><strong>George and Harriet Cornell:</strong> Philanthropists<strong> </strong>after whom the Cornell Museum is named, the Cornells were the first<strong> </strong>private contributors to Old School Square and<strong> </strong>bequeathed several million dollars to the project.<strong></strong></p> <p><strong>Sandy Simon:</strong> A Delray native who attended the historic schools that formed Old School Square, Simon served on the board of Old School Square and through his books and advocacy has furthered discussions about the city’s cultural impact.</p> <p><strong>Martie Lattner Walker: </strong>Through her family foundation and private gifts, Walker made the original largest gift of $500,000 to develop the Crest Theatre. She continued to help shape the venue’s lecture series and children’s programs through financial support.</p>magazineWed, 04 Mar 2015 11:14:00 +0000 BeachUp Close: Matt Stabile<h3>Arts Garage’s latest education director juggles multiple roles.</h3> <p>At the time of this writing, <strong>Matt Stabile</strong>’s Facebook cover photo was a Pablo Picasso quote, written in a juvenile scrawl on black marker: “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once you grow up.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="287" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/mattstabile.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>This isn’t just a belief of Stabile’s. Fostering the artistry of children and young adults has been his profession, on and off, since at least 2004, when the Theatre Studies graduate of Dallas’ Southern Methodist University moved back to his native South Florida to join Fantasy Theatre Factory, a venerable children’s troupe in Miami. He taught Educational Outreach Workshops there and loved them so much he brought similar programs to area middle schools, then spent seven years on the faculty at G-Star School of the Arts—leading and even creating much of its Acting Department curricula.</p> <p>Then came the Kravis Center, where his work as Artistic Coordinator for its summer ArtsCamp earned him the venue’s Outstanding Teacher of 2013 award.</p> <p>All of this experience has culminated in Stabile’s best opportunity yet to shape tomorrow’s theater professionals. Last fall, Arts Garage appointed Stabile its new education director. The 36-year-old Delray Beach resident had already been running Arts Garage’s “Yes Labs”—community workshops that take theater students’ stories from gestation to stage—for 18 months, so when the venue sought a replacement for outgoing education director Drew Tucker, Stabile was an obvious choice.</p> <p>“He understands the performing arts world and can impart those lessons, while also helping all students develop a solid arts foundation that will remain with them no matter what career they choose,” says Alyona Ushe, Arts Garage’s president and CEO.</p> <p>“I don’t think I’ll ever be able to not teach,” adds Stabile. “I think it’s vitally important, and being a teacher for as long as I was, I saw firsthand the difference it made. I think there’s a responsibility for artists to pass their craft along.”</p> <p>Stabile leads an indefatigable life. At the time of our interview, he was nearing the home stretch of his first workshops at Arts Garage and its sister venue, Bailey Contemporary Arts in Pompano Beach, in which students gained instruction in voice, theater, acting, instrumental performance and visual arts. The classes had been running weekly since Oct. 20.</p> <p>All the while, Stabile was fulfilling a slate of professional acting jobs. Last November, he played a recovering drug addict in the anarchic ensemble comedy “Detroit” for Miami’s Zoetic Stage. The day after it closed, he was back in Boca Raton rehearsing for a revival of “The Timekeepers,” the Holocaust drama that swept the 2014 Carbonell Awards. Playing frighteningly against type, he reprised his role as a humorless kapo, or prison functionary, hired to supervise a labor camp.</p> <p>“You take jobs sometimes because they’re jobs, and every once in a while you’re lucky enough to be in something that matters,” he says, recalling the initial production of “The Timekeepers,” in Fort Lauderdale in the summer of 2013. “And this was one of those stories that immediately felt like it mattered.”</p> <p>It also opened new doors for Stabile as a full-time actor, during a brief stint in which he didn’t have a day job in education. He’s achieved his success in part by following the mantra he had tattooed onto his left arm: “Hamlet 1, iii, 78,” a reference to the famous Shakespeare line, “This above all, to thine own self be true.”</p> <p>Handsome and charming but with an ability to play brooding and misanthropic characters, Stabile has landed roles as varied as a romantically flustered commercial director in Parade Productions’ “The Last Schwartz” in Boca, and a wayward young man tortured by memories of child abuse, in Zoetic Stage’s “The Great God Pan” in Miami. This March, he joins the cast of “Uncertain Terms” at Arts Garage (see preview on page 40).</p> <p>“One of the things that I brought to the educational program [at Arts Garage] was that I want our teachers to be working professionals,” he says. “That way the kids see the examples right in front of them.”</p> <p>Which isn’t to say every student he teaches will be the next Matt Stabile, let alone the next Laurence Olivier.</p> <p>“There are a lot of groups out there that are star factories,” he says. “As in, ‘We are going to put these kids onstage, put them in a show, and make them stars.’ We don’t work that way. Our classes are modeled after the work I’ve done with Kravis Center over the years, where it’s really about engaging that kid into the process. I try to tell kids, if you really love this, love all of it. Find a lot of stuff you’re good at. Can you work backstage? Can you teach? Can you do lighting? Can you stage-manage?</p> <p>“We’re not interested in the big, showy production and churning out Honey Boo-boos,” he continues. “There are hundreds of thousands of people making their money in the arts. Love the whole field, and then you’ll find ways to live a life.”</p>John ThomasonWed, 04 Mar 2015 11:07:00 +0000 BeachUp Close: Chelsea Midlarsky and Gina Jenkins<h3><span>Life is an endless cycle for these Delray event founders.</span></h3> <p><span><img alt="" height="276" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/granfondo.jpg" width="490"></span></p> <p><strong>If you go</strong></p> <p><em>What</em>: Granfondo Garneau Ride</p> <p><em>When</em>: March 22</p> <p><em>Details</em>: The ride begins at 7 a.m. at Veterans Park (802 N.E. First St.), continuing south to Palmetto Park Road, then north to the Palm Beach Inlet before finishing back at Veterans Park.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: $150 to participate; free to watch</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: <a href=""></a></p> <p><img alt="" height="423" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/chelseamidlarsky_ginajenkins.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p>For Chelsea Midlarsky (left) and Gina Jenkins, the founders of the <a href="" target="_blank">Delray Beach Twilight Festival</a>, the magic happens in a small conference room in the back of an office in a nondescript building on Federal Highway, just south of Delray Beach. The room had doubled as a second storage space for excess festival gear when I met Midlarsky, an athletic, 27-year-old corporate headhunter by day. Cycling T-shirts spilled out of boxes, yellow EVENT PARKING signs leaned against walls, and scuffed Powerade igloo coolers formed a totem in a corner. Midlarsky’s energetic dog Cassius—so named because he’s a boxer mix—provided the entertainment as we waited for Jenkins, a 47-year-old fellow cyclist who works for Susan G. Komen, to arrive. “She is notoriously late,”</p> <p>Midlarsky says, gesturing to my audio recorder. “And you can record that.” Midlarsky kids because she and Jenkins are best friends, meeting in 2010 when Jenkins hired her to work for a sports marketing firm. For the past three years, every March, they’ve run the Twilight Festival, a professional cycling race in Downtown Delray Beach modeled after Georgia’s pioneering Athens Twilight. The 80-minute, .6-mile course is the only such race in Florida, and one of only 12 Twilights in the United States. Midlarsky and Jenkins—who did show up after about 10 minutes, in a Komen-pink Nike top—have the festival operations down to a science, playing off each other’s strengths. Until the weekend of the event, they’re an entirely two-woman operation, and this sometimes entails nights of scant sleep.</p> <p>Their hard work has paid off. For its inaugural 2012 race, the Twilight Festival drew 5,000 spectators. Police estimates reached 20,000 attendees for its sophomore event, and in 2014, the festival attracted close to 30,000 visitors. As for the number of racers, it doubled from 300 to 600 by its second year, and Midlarsky and Jenkins have since had to cap the total cyclists at 1,000 for logistical purposes.</p> <p>“The reason the event has continued to be so successful is that we really strive for the details,” Jenkins says. “There are rides every weekend, and not to take anything away from anybody else, but we go the extra step. When you get your goodie bag, it’s going to have extra stuff in it. When you come in the morning, you’re not just going to get a coffee; we have a nice breakfast.</p> <p>We have music. At the finish line, we went above and beyond with the food and beer. Our goal is to make it VIP. We really try to make you feel like you’re part of something bigger.”</p> <p>Midlarsky, who is a dedicated but noncompetitive rider, was destined to enter the field in some capacity; her brother Michael is a professional cyclist whose third-place medal in 2010’s Leadville 100 Splits—a grueling, 100-mile mountain-bike race—hangs in the Twilight Festival office. But Midlarsky wanted to ensure that her event wasn’t just for the pros, so in 2013 she added a community event to the end of the festival: The Delray Beach Granfondo (which is Italian for “big ride”), a 100-kilomoter ride which any cyclist can tackle at his or her own pace, surrounded by riders traveling at their speed.</p> <p>“When we started this, we were a race,” Midlarsky says. “And a lot of people maybe got discouraged that we were all about the racers and not so much about the everyday recreational riders, which is not the case. We want to bring cycling to the forefront. We want to encourage people who have never ridden to come to our ride.”</p> <p>This won’t be as much of an issue this year; for the first time in four years, there won’t be a Twilight Festival race in 2015. “Everyone loves it,” Midlarsky says, but it’s become too “cost-prohibitive” at this time. She needs an influx of sponsors on board, but she adds that some “people in the cycling community are looking to bring it back in 2016.”</p> <p>Which just means that she and Jenkins are putting all of their eggs—and wheels, spokes and handlebars—into the basket of the 2015 Delray Granfondo on March 22, where riders who pay the $150 admission fee will receive Jenkins’ aforementioned perks, plus a custom Granfondo jersey, a timing chip, police escorts and wheel support, even complimentary massages (proceeds will benefit the event’s charity, the Gumbo Limbo Nature Center).</p> <p>And of course they receive the best gift of all—a night or two in Delray Beach.</p> <p>“Last year, over 200 riders flew in from Canada and stayed in our hotels,” Midlarsky says. “And they’re all going into the restaurants, because our event happens for a couple of hours, and then it disperses. We don’t serve any food, so you have to go into the restaurants and shops.</p> <p>“I live in Delray, and I love Delray,” she adds. “I want to get the word out about what we have. Our event is something fun for them to do, and then we release them to what I think is the greatest city in the world. Who wouldn’t want to be in Delray Beach?”</p>John ThomasonWed, 04 Mar 2015 10:47:00 +0000 BeachRestaurant Review: Mastino<h3>Italian soul food warms up downtown Delray.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/mastino.jpg" width="490"> </p> <p><em>25 N.E. Second Ave., Delray Beach, 561/921-8687</em></p> <p><em>HOURS:</em> Tuesday to Thursday 5 to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to midnight, Sunday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.</p> <p><em>PRICES</em>: Entrées $11.50 to $19</p> <p><em>WEBSITE</em>: <a href=""></a></p> <p>The origins of soul food are deep in the experiences of African-Americans in the United States.</p> <p>As slaves, their sustenance was based on what they could grow and forage for themselves, on ingredients considered not grand enough for their masters’ tables. A variety of wild greens, beans and tubers, offal and game, and odd bits of animals were the building blocks of a budding cuisine.</p> <p>Though the actual term “soul food” wasn’t coined until the 1960s, it could certainly be argued that the soul those black cooks put into their cooking (not to mention a considerable amount of culinary skill) was at least in part responsible for transforming such humble ingredients into what is now celebrated as an ingenious and delicious regional American cuisine.</p> <p>I bring all this up because for a restaurant to call its cooking “soul food” is to shoulder some pretty heavy weight, to have your marketing people write a check that your kitchen had better be able to cash. Mastino, which late last year took up residence in a corner of SoLita in downtown Delray, calls its cookery “Italian soul food.” And, yes, its kitchen can cash that check. Mastino brings a hip, urban, gastropubby ethos to the casual, American-style Italian restaurant.</p> <p>Think polished concrete flooring; brick accent walls; towering ceilings crisscrossed with blackpainted beams and ductwork; a young, energetic and personable staff; and a menu devoted mostly to small plates and Neapolitan-style pizzas.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/mastino2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>You easily can make a meal of the small plates here, and I highly recommend it—though it would be a shame to miss out on Mastino’s excellent, thin-crusted pizzas. Clams rarely get any better than when swimming in a briny broth creamily emulsified with white wine and extravirgin olive oil and spiked with copious amounts of garlic.</p> <p>An “old school” meatball was a primer on the pleasures of the comforting and familiar, a fluffy, well-seasoned orb ringed with a bright-tasting tomato sauce, a dollop of milky ricotta and a scattering of thickly julienned basil, which gave the dish a sprightly summertime freshness despite unseasonably chilly temperatures outside.</p> <p>A “piccolo” serving of ossobuco was barely smaller than what goes for $25-plus at most Italian restaurants. A blessedly reasonable $14 brought forth two small veal shanks, their meat so tender as to require neither teeth nor gums, their savory braising liquid rich with gelatin and studded with fat chunks of carrot. The only niggling complaint involved the kitchen’s heavy hand with pepper, which was so biting it threatened to throw the dish out of balance.</p> <p>A stack of “crispy” eggplant slices breaded and fried as stiff as a board, layered with tomatoes and fresh mozzarella, and drizzled with balsamic vinegar and EVOO, was more intriguing in conception than reality, the eggplant tasteless and chewy, though admittedly crispy. If you’re looking to consume a few extra calories, try the oven-roasted mac-n-cheese instead, a gut-busting portion of shell pasta with fontina, mozzarella and ricotta cheeses, a crunchy breadcrumb topping and a light scent of truffle oil.</p> <p>We don’t do pizza shaming in these pages, but it would truly be shameful not to sample at least one of Mastino’s Neapolitan-style pies, which come out of an oak-fired oven burning at a hellish 900 degrees. Pizzas come either red (with San Marzano tomato sauce) or white (no sauce but lots of cheese). Ours came as a thin, puffy, pleasantly chewy crust topped with mozzarella, sweet Italian sausage and faintly bitter broccoli rabe, a combination that can scarcely be improved upon.</p> <p>Also from the wood-burning oven was half an herb-crusted chicken, brined to keep it juicy, with lightly charred skin and thick planks of rosemaryspiked potatoes. As with the ossobuco, somebody got a little carried away with the pepper.</p> <p>Desserts tended toward the simple and familiar—cannoli, tiramisu, that sort of thing. Tiramisu is not made in-house but rather by Old School Bakery. It’s nothing unexpected but a commendable effort, one last fulfillment of Mastino’s promise of “Italian soul food.”</p>Bill CitaraWed, 04 Mar 2015 10:35:00 +0000 BeachDiningNews & ReviewsDelray Calendar: The Top 5<h3>From dog days to bacon and bourbon, this season has a host of entertaining diversions.<span> </span></h3> <p><span><img alt="" height="582" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-04_at_10.27.53_am.png" width="449"></span></p> <p>[5] <strong>“Uncertain Terms”</strong></p> <p><em>When:</em> March 6-29</p> <p><em>Where</em>: Arts Garage, 180 N.E. First St.</p> <p><em>About</em>: Playwright Allison Gregory had finished the first act of her latest Great American Play when she found herself in a creative mire: No second act was materializing. Then, like providence, an idea for an all-new play hatched outside her house. A hermetic neighbor, who had been living alone on the now-depleted trust fund of his late partner, was being thrown out of his domicile, sulking in an armchair on the front lawn. “The children [of the late homeowner] were having to foot the bill for him, pay his taxes and utilities. It was sad and kind of funny,” Gregory recalls. “I started weaving a play around that insight. I took that exact situation and made up the dynamics and conflicts within the family and outside the family, and the house itself became a character to me.” The result is “Uncertain Terms,” a play that has received glowing reviews in workshop productions, and which will receive its world premiere at the Theatre at Arts Garage. In this case, the obstinate houseguest is an ex-husband of main character Dani, forcing the couple to reconvene and unpack family baggage, while dealing with the fickle real estate market of recession-era America.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: $30-$45</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: 561/450-6357, <a href=""></a></p> <p><img alt="" height="563" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/top5_berloni.jpg" width="450"></p> <p>[4] <strong>Bill Berloni</strong></p> <p><em>When</em>: March 19</p> <p><em>Where</em>: Delray Center for the Arts, 51 N. Swinton Ave.</p> <p><em>About</em>: Every now and then on Broadway, a four-legged actor will perform with such verisimilitude that you hope the board of the Tonys will add “Best Performance by a Canine” to its awards the following year. Sandy, the terrier mix who costarred in 2,377 performances in “Annie,” was one such pooch. The man who discovered Sandy, Bill Berloni, was a 19-year-old theater apprentice whose job consisted of building sets for summer stock companies. He rescued Sandy from the local pound, paid $7 for him, and launched the careers of both the man and his best friend. Berloni has become the American media’s impresario of animal thespians, providing animals for hundreds of films, TV shows, commercials, theatrical productions, even a New York City Ballet performance. He’s worked with everything from cockroaches and butterflies to elephants and giraffes, along with countless dogs and cats liberated from kill shelters. The winner of a 2011 Tony Award for Excellence in Theatre will visit Delray Beach, with a canine companion in tow, to discuss his memoir, Broadway Tails.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: $30-$45</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: 561/243-7922, <a href=""></a></p> <p><img alt="" height="358" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/top5_cesarmillan.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>[3] <strong>Cesar Millan</strong></p> <p><em>When</em>: April 1</p> <p><em>Where</em>: Kravis Center, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach</p> <p><em>About</em>: Speaking of dogs, Cesar Millan knows them better than pretty much anybody else on the planet. He probably knows your dog better than your dog knows itself. The world’s most famous dog whisperer is a self-taught canine guru whose best-selling manuals have sold more than 2 million copies across 15 countries. His live shows will hope to prove that he can be just as compelling without the presence of anxious, erratic, soon-to-be-tamed four-legged friends. Millan, who has fought with issues of divorce, depression and attempted suicide in recent years, will address his values, principles and methods in conversations that have been described as more spontaneous than his rigidly formatted TV show. And perhaps you can even pick up some of his exclusive products, like the Funny Muzzle and Cesar’s Dog Backpack.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: $25-$100</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: 561/832-7469, <a href=""></a></p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/top5_delrayaffair.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>[2] <strong>Delray Affair</strong></p> <p><em>When</em>: April 10-12</p> <p><em>Where</em>: Downtown Delray Beach</p> <p><em>About</em>: Long before South Floridians had any other reason to stop in the sleepy outpost known as Delray Beach, they still came in droves for the Delray Affair, the prescient art festival that first spread its canvas across Atlantic Avenue in 1962. More than half a century later, it’s still growing strong, it’s still stopping traffic, and it’s still a marathon for organizers, artists and attendees alike: a sprawl of 12 city blocks that proudly bills itself as the largest arts and crafts festival in the southeastern United States. Visitors can expect to view and purchase work by artists and crafters from 30 states and 12 countries, with a special emphasis on the fun and the funky. In addition, the Delray Affair is bringing back last year’s “Art of the Automobile” showcase, featuring a different collection of vintage American, European and “future classic” cars parked each day at Old School Square Park. And launching April 1, the Affair’s enhanced mobile app finally brings this middle-aged institution into the 21st century, offering color-coded maps and personal event scheduling for easy smart phone navigation.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: Free</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: 561/279-0907, <a href=""></a></p> <p><img alt="" height="308" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/top5_baconandbourbon.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>[1] <strong>Bacon &amp; Bourbon Fest</strong></p> <p><em>When</em>: March 28-29</p> <p><em>Where</em>: Downtown Delray Beach</p> <p><em>About</em>: Say it with me now, in your best movie-trailer voice: “From the team that brought you the Delray Beach Garlic Festival and the Delray Beach Wine and Seafood Festival comes a culinary happening that goes whole hog.” Festival Management Group’s latest event, the alliteratively titled Bacon &amp; Bourbon Fest, is a saltier, more robust affair than its predecessors, promising an array of chef-designed bacon and pork delicacies, from braised pork bellies with tamari, garlic, ginger and chili peppers to the inevitable bacon ice cream (hey, it worked for garlic). Comfort food, farm-to-table offerings and New American Cuisine will all be on the menu, and there are enough liquor seminars and tastings to turn you into a bourbon connoisseur. The live music lineup is heavy on classic rock and rollicking blues. Slated performers include Mac Arnold, a legendary Chicago bluesman who recorded with everyone from James Brown and Muddy Waters to BB King and Otis Redding; Victor Wainwright, a boisterous, Memphis-based pianist known for merging boogie-woogie and honkey-tonk music; and MaGowan’s Chair, a South Florida-based acoustic rock duo.</p> <p><em>Cost</em>: $25</p> <p><em>Contact</em>: 561/279-0907, <a href=""></a></p>John ThomasonWed, 04 Mar 2015 10:23:00 +0000 BeachSpotlight on Kristine deHaseth<p><strong>Kristine deHaseth</strong> comes by her love of Florida naturally; she’s a Florida native who grew up on Key Biscayne. While she’s lived on both sides of the bridge in Delray, gulf Stream and ocean Ridge, she’s never far from her beloved beach, where she enjoys shell seeking and paddleboarding. She is one of the founding organizers of the <a href="" target="_blank">Florida Coalition for Preservation</a>, and has served as executive director for the past eight years. the Coalition is funded 100 percent by individual donations from citizens who support its mission of promoting responsible growth while preserving the character and quality of life of the barrier island and coastal communities.</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/kristinedehaseth.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What do you think makes Delray unique?</strong></p> <p>I love that each area in Delray has a unique character. Residents feel strongly about preserving their neighborhood’s uniqueness. And when coalesced, the various citizens groups support each other and get involved when important city issues arise.</p> <p><strong>What’s your favorite thing to do in Delray?</strong></p> <p>Go to city commission meetings until midnight. Seriously, if we could combine these meetings with taste-testings from the wonderful restaurants on the Avenue, we’d have a winner.</p> <p><strong>Do you have a dream project you’d like to create in Delray?</strong></p> <p>The dream project has already begun! We are in full support of the Beach Area Master plan initiated by the Beach property owners Association. The multifaceted plan is needed to ensure that our beaches are periodically renourished, and that we have sustainable healthy dunes. This is a “forever” project to maintain our shoreline as the city’s most valuable asset.</p> <p><strong>How do you think the coalition makes Delray a better place? What’s the role you see for the coalition in Delray’s future?</strong></p> <p>We work very hard at staying informed about development projects, issues that impact our beaches and other things that may affect the quality of life for residents, neighbors and visitors alike. Providing timely, evenhanded communication is of great value [and keeps] citizens informed and educated. As a coalition, we coalesce the many public interest groups and encourage their involvement, which makes Delray a better place.</p>magazineWed, 04 Mar 2015 10:18:00 +0000 BeachDelray Hot List: Spring Into Action<h3>As winter winds to a close, Delray is busting out all over.</h3> <p><strong>Birdland</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/greenkay.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>With daylight savings kicking in, there’s plenty of time to get out to Green Cay Nature Center to enjoy a sunset. Take a walk on the wild side to see unique birds and other fauna via the extensive boardwalk that winds through the lush wetlands—giving you primo viewing without the sandy feet. The boardwalk is open daily from 7 a.m. to sunset. To learn more about the wildlife that thrives in this delicate ecosystem, visit the nature center exhibits, open Wednesday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.</p> <p><em>12800 Hagen Ranch Road, Boynton Beach, 561/966-</em><em>7000, </em><a href=""><em></em></a></p> <p><strong>Readers Who Lunch</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="356" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-04_at_9.46.32_am.png" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Kate DiCamillo</em></p> <p>The Palm Beach Literacy Coalition’s love of Literacy Luncheon on March 12 at the Kravis Center celebrates a very likeable spring critter: the bookworm. This year’s event features Newbery Award winner Kate DiCamillo, the New York Times bestselling author of Because of Winn-Dixie and The Tale of Despereaux. Patron tickets are available for $250 and include a seat at the luncheon as well as the opportunity to meet this entertaining author at a private reception, with a 5 x 7 photo provided as a memento of the event. With more than a dozen programs countywide to improve the reading skills of children and adults, the Literacy Coalition offers many opportunities to get help or volunteer.</p> <p><em>561/279-9103, </em><a href=""><em></em></a></p> <p><strong>Farm to Market</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/woolbright_jessegoldfinger.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p><em>Jesse Goldfinger</em></p> <p>With all the talk of “farm-to-table” among restaurants, the Woolbright Farmer’s Market brings that foodie trend to your own kitchen with ease. Provision like a pro with the freshest produce and veggies each season has to offer—and where “locally grown” is just as important as an organic certification. Owner Jesse Goldfinger also flexes his own green thumb to offer more than homegrown friendliness at his rustic roadside stand; the market is brimming with lush herbs for your table and plants for your garden. There’s also a new “juice truck” on site—and don’t forget all the flowers, potted plants, delicious breads, pies, cheeses and spreads from mom-and-pop purveyors. Up-front parking makes it easy to stop in.</p> <p><em>141 W. Woolbright Road, 561/732-2454, </em><a href=""><em></em></a></p> <p><strong>The Eyes Have It</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="368" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/lashlady.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Hey batter, batter! We’re not talking about America’s favorite pastime; we’re referring to the kind of batting Lady Lash delivers with its expert eyelash extensions. Sport longer, thicker-looking lashes—without mascara. With maintenance every two to four weeks, you can hit a home run with glamour and shorten your daily beauty regimen. Frame your sexy doe eyes with Georgio’s signature brow tinting and sculpting to have your bases covered.</p> <p><em>170 N.E. Second Ave., 561/865-5111, </em><a href=""><em></em></a></p> <p><strong>Pick Me Up</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="387" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-04_at_10.04.32_am.png" width="488"></strong></p> <p><em>Matt Williams</em></p> <p>Leave it to a fitness trainer to come up with a delicious idea—that’s actually good for you. Matt Williams, a former schoolteacher and currently a trainer at Slash, was inspired by his students and clients to come up with an alternative to sugary, processed snacks. FroPro is a frozen, protein-packed bar that simplifies healthy eating on the go. With all-natural ingredients and flavors that sound like a decadent dessert, it’s an energy-boosting treat perfect for pre/post-workout or the afternoon doldrums on our warm South Florida days. How cool is that?! Available at these fine locations in Delray: Fit Food Express, Juicebuzz, Planet Juice and the Biostation. <a href=""><em></em></a></p> <p><strong>N.Y. State of Mind</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bigapple.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>Enjoy the hustle and bustle of NYC without leaving the 561 at the Big Apple Shopping Bazaar. Spend the day shopping among the iconic sights of New York, like the Statue of Liberty and Central Park, all in air-conditioned comfort. With more than 60 shops, there’s literally something for everyone in this newly remodeled marketplace. And don’t forget another favorite attraction from the city, the deli! The best part is, since this little slice of Gotham is right in our backyard, there’s no need to wonder how you’ll carry your Big Apple deals on the flight home.</p> <p><em>5283 W. Atlantic Ave., 561/499-9935, </em><em><a href=""></a></em></p> <h3>Delray After Dark</h3> <p>It’s pretty easy to find live music on the Avenue. Vintage Tap has made a big splash in Delray nightlife featuring a different band every night. As you walk down the sidewalk you can hear the Elvis impersonator crooning at<strong> Johnnie Brown’s</strong>, and with enough vodka the ’80s and ’90s tribute bands at <strong>The Hurricane</strong> beckon. And there’s always the relaxed reggae at <strong>Boston’s</strong>. However, the music scene off the Avenue is really thriving, so here are a few places you might not have come across. What all of these nightspots have in common is a unique, artsy vibe—and plenty of parking.</p> <p><strong>3rd and 3rd</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="226" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/3rdand3rd.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>In spite of a lack of signage, and its remote location on the outskirts of Pineapple Grove, 3rd and 3rd is a bustling hangout, much like the perpetual party house in college, only with adults sitting in a living-room setting, eating fabulous food, sipping cocktails and enjoying a variety of local musicians. No Cheetos and Old Milwaukee here. It’s hipster heaven for the 20- to 50-something crowd!</p> <p><em>301 N.E. Third Ave., 561/303-1939, </em><a href=""><em></em></a><em></em></p> <p><strong>Kevro’s Art Bar</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="349" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/kevroart.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>On the south side of Atlantic Avenue, in a lone building in the yet-to-be-developed SofA district, this bohemian outpost hosts a lively lineup of musicians and artists. Part art-loft warehouse, part tropical patio, Kevro’s is a thriving pioneer in what promises to be Delray’s Next Big Arts District.</p> <p><em>166 S.E. Second Ave., 561/278-9675, </em><a href=""><em></em></a><em></em></p> <p><strong>The Beat Cup Café</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="490" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/thebeatcupcafe.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>This cool hangout sprang from the über artsy Salon Resta, which was never your average hair salon in the first place. Local artists and photographers displayed their work in the salon, and in the evenings musicians were invited for informal jam sessions. With the creative juices flowing, their cup runneth over to the space next door. The Beat Cup is part gallery, part coffee bar and part performance space. The “house band,” Michaux, plays regularly. You’ll always find something entertaining and thought-provoking here.</p> <p><em>660 Linton Blvd., No. 110, 561/330-4693, </em><a href=""><em></em></a><em></em></p>magazineWed, 04 Mar 2015 09:58:00 +0000 BeachQ&amp;A: Jayce Ogren<p>The stars aligned like no other in September 1957, when “West Side Story” premiered on Broadway. Rarely before or since have arguably the greatest figures in their respective fields combined to produce a work of art: The show produced unforgettable lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, in his Broadway debut; majestic choreography by the inimitable Jerome Robbins; and a lavish, operatic, hip score from Leonard Bernstein. And oh yeah—the story was a modern, streetwise riff on Shakespeare, who was no slouch, either.</p> <p>A few years later, another artistic titan was thrown into this passionate cauldron: Film director Robert Wise, the consummate craftsman behind “The Day the Earth Stood Still” and “The Sound of Music,” who would direct the movie adaptation of “West Side Story.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="322" src="/site_media/uploads/February%202015/west-side-story-0903-pp03.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The work of all of these great minds will come together in a kind of aural 3-D this coming Friday, when “West Side Story” will be screened at Festival of the Arts Boca with live musical accompaniment from the Festival Orchestra, under the baton of accomplished conductor Jayce Ogren. This won’t be the first time the Festival has presented a film-concert hybrid, but Bernstein’s dynamic score in “West Side Story” is a more ambitious and exciting choice than its more previous, statelier choices, “The Wizard of Oz” and “Casablanca.” It’s not just a score; it’s an experience, and the music is an indelible element of the film’s drama, romance, comedy and tragedy.</p> <p>Ogren, a dashing young composer and conductor from Brooklyn, will surely be up to the challenge. His previous conducting work, including Benjamin Britten’s “Turn of the Screw,” Mozart’s “The Magic Flute” and Bernstein’s “A Quiet Place,” have earned him wide acclaim, and he tells Boca Raton that he is “really excited about the prospect of bringing this piece down to Boca.”</p> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/February%202015/jayce-ogren.jpg" width="490"></p> <p><strong>What was your reaction when you learned you’d be conducting the orchestra for this iconic score?</strong></p> <p>I’ve conducted “West Side Story” in this version a number of times, and it’s a project I really love. The music is incredibly rewarding and feels fresh every time, so I was really looking forward to encountering that music again. And it’s also a total joy for the audience. It’s unique, and I think it’s an experience that really enhances the film for the audience.</p> <p><strong>You’ve conduced operas before. Do you feel like there’s a connection in “West Side Story” to opera—at least the gravitas of opera—that isn’t there in a lot of Broadway musicals?</strong></p> <p>Definitely. It’s really a piece that treads this middle ground between opera and musicals. My experience in opera does seem to enhance what I do with the score. But that’s the genius of Bernstein: You can’t really categorize or define what he does. He just wrote what he heard, and what he thought would be exciting and what would speak to people. And “West Side Story” is the prime example of that.</p> <p><img alt="" height="449" src="/site_media/uploads/February%202015/leonard_bernstein.jpeg" width="350"></p> <p>(Leonard Bernstein)</p> <p><strong>Even though you’ve conducted this score before in a live movie setting, it hasn’t been with the players in our orchestra, correct?</strong></p> <p>That’s true.</p> <p><strong>So how much rehearsal time do you need, and what is that process like?</strong> </p> <p>We have three rehearsals. Whenever I’ve done this project, that’s the amount of time we’ve had. In the first rehearsal, we just make our way through, and it’s a big challenge, because the orchestra needs to keep up with the film. And a lot of the tempos in the music from the film are very, very fast. A lot of that has to do with fitting with Jerome Robbins’ beautiful choreography. So a lot of the tempos need to be a lot quicker than we’re used to in orchestras, like symphonic suites. So after that first shock of how challenging the project really is, things start to settle in in that second rehearsal.</p> <p>In the third rehearsal, we have a run-through of the whole show, and a chance to fix any small issues that may come up. So it’s an amount of rehearsal time where we have everything in order, but also there’s still that excitement of everybody needing to really be on the top of their game for the show to go well.</p> <p><strong>That does not sound like a lot of rehearsal time, but I guess you’re working with top-notch professionals who probably at least know the music by ear before the first rehearsal.</strong> </p> <p>Everyone knows the tunes, and they even know the difficult mix from “Symphonic Dances” that are a big part of the repertoire. But there’s a lot of music that most of these players will have never done. And even a lot of the music they know will be with slightly different orchestrations and very different tempos. But definitely, with “West Side Story” being an iconic piece that’s part of our culture, there’s no figuring out the style or how it should go. Top-notch players in America know this music and the style. Once they have a couple of read-throughs, it comes together very well.</p> <p><strong>Does the fact that you’re conducting in front of a movie, with a live audience reacting to the story, affect what you do?</strong> </p> <p>It’s wonderful hearing the audience’s reactions, because when I hear them laugh at something, or when I can feel, in the room, the atmosphere that people are truly touched by the drama going on in the film, it’s inspiring to me, and to the musicians as well. With this show, we want to provide entertainment in the best possible sense. We want it to be fun and exciting and also for it to be a deeply moving experience. And when you get that audience reaction, it prompts even more expressive playing, and even more commitment.</p> <p><strong>I was reading your list of accomplishments, and seeing works like “Turn of the Screw,” and pieces by John Adams and Rufus Wainwright. Would you say that you are attracted to artists who are more alternative, who stand a bit away from the mainstream?</strong></p> <p>Not particularly. I just love conducting great music, and I think that comes from a lot of different types of musicians. I did my undergrad in Composition, and I’ve always been attracted to contemporary music. I think if anything, I just haven’t let inventions get in the way of my taste.</p> <p>For example, there are people in the classical music world who approached Rufus Wainwright’s opera “Prima Donna” with a closed mind. They expected it to be unsuccessful, and then they didn’t really listen to it. But I think if you really listen to what he did, in a first effort in the classical genre from a singer-songwriter, it’s a remarkable piece. So I just try to be open. I enjoy working on projects that are inspiring and are full of quality music.</p> <p><em>“West Side Story” will be screened/performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 6 at Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton. Tickets cost $25-$125. For tickets and information, call 561/368-8445 or visit</em></p>John ThomasonWed, 04 Mar 2015 09:00:00 +0000 & EventsMoviesMusicUpcoming EventsLocal cancer survivor triumphs at cycling challenge<p><img alt="" height="39" src="/site_media/uploads/thefitlife.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>Last December, I shared <a href="/blog/2014/12/17/from-the-fight-of-his-life-to-the-ride-of-his-life/" target="_blank">the story of local cyclist and cancer survivor George Fetko</a> as he prepared for the ride of his life. Well, he completed that 104-mile bike ride during the <a href="">Dolphin Cycling Challenge</a>, raising $8,260 for cancer research.</p> <p>And that’s not all Fetko did.</p> <p><img alt="" height="275" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-03_at_4.33.46_pm.png" width="490"></p> <p>The 56-year-old Boca Raton resident, who only a year ago endured an intensely toxic treatment regime to throw his cancer into remission, finished first at the event in early February 2015. He completed the challenge in 4:40  -- which means an average of 22 mph.</p> <p>“This was not a social event for me,” Fetko said in an email to the Fit Life.  “It was a milestone marking my recovery. Rode with my heart.”</p> <p>The weekend was a family affair. Fetko’s daughter Emily and her fiancé Dustin Durham trained in the snow and cold of Connecticut and traveled here to compete in the Dolphin Cycling Challenge 5K in George’s honor.</p> <p>So, there’s your update. Could it be any more triumphant?</p> <p>Don’t forget to check out this video from Fetko’s race. Next time you feel a little sluggish, next time your day isn’t going right or you’re too lazy to get up and workout, watch and learn from Fetko’s determination.</p> <p><iframe height="270" src="" width="480"></iframe></p> <p><em>Video credit: Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and David Sutta Photography</em></p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>For more posts from The Fit Life, click <a href="/blog/tag/the-fit-life/" target="_blank">here</a>. </em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong>About Lisette</strong></em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><strong></strong>Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on <a href="" target="_blank"></a>.</em></p> <p><em><br></em></p>Lisette HiltonWed, 04 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 Extra: Near-Death Experiences<p>In 1999, while undergoing her fourth surgery for scoliosis, <strong>Denise Merkle</strong> left her body. And as the Coconut Creek resident explains, the experience shifted from one of intense discomfort—she was partially awake during the procedure—to one of otherworldly love. And like the other subjects in the “Tunnel Visions” feature in our March-April issue, her near-death experience changed her life forever, leaving her with a newfound enlightenment.</p> <p><img alt="" height="384" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/denise_merkle.jpg" width="288"></p> <p>Merkle, who works for a Deerfield Beach printing company by day, shared her compelling story with <em>Boca Raton</em>:</p> <p>“I wasn’t interested as much [in the afterlife] until this happened to me. When we were little, we would played with Ouija boards, but as far as the afterlife, I didn’t give it much thought. I knew that there was <em>something</em>, but once this happened, I knew for sure, and I know now that there is life after death.</p> <p>“I had three scoliosis surgeries, and one of them was a 24-hour surgery. I didn’t have any problems with anything prior to this. The ironic thing about it was that when I went in to have this surgery, the anesthesiologist was young, and before he put me under, I said to him, ‘Don’t give me too much and kill me!,” because he seemed like he’d be inexperienced because he was so young. Everybody else I’d dealt with over the years was older, and I never felt uncomfortable. For some reason, with him, I didn’t feel comfortable.</p> <p>“I don’t think he gave me enough [anesthesia], because when they were getting ready to operate, I could hear the surgeon asking everybody, ‘Are you ready?’ I was like, this is kind of weird, why am I still hearing everybody talk? And the nurse was talking back to him. What I think happened is that he didn’t give me enough. He gave me just enough to put me under, but not enough for my brain to go to sleep. That was a bad experience. I would never want to go through that again. I tried to lift my arm up and tell them I was still awake. But if you’ve ever been under anesthesia, you’re like solid brick after that. I think I panicked, or my body panicked.</p> <p>“The last thing I heard was ‘Code Blue!’ and right after that I knew I wasn’t connected to [my body] anymore. I was somewhere else. The weird thing about this is that I’ve read a lot of books about the afterlife after this. <em>Journey of Souls</em> tells you that people who have traveled this path before won’t necessarily see people, because they’ve traveled it so many times that they’re comfortable.</p> <p>“I know a lot of people talk about how they see a bright light. I saw that, but what I remember the most was going down a tunnel or a path that was bluish-grey. I was going toward this bright light. It seemed like when I almost got to it, I started coming back away from it. You could see it getting smaller and smaller.</p> <p>“I didn’t hear anything, but I was so aware of where I was. It was a heightened sense of knowing. I remember thinking to myself, so this is what it’s like to be dead. It’s not bad. It was the opposite; it was good. I knew I was dead, but I was still <em>thinking</em>, so how can I still be thinking? But I knew I wasn’t connected to my shell anymore. </p> <p>“What I experienced was an extreme amount of love and energy, like being wrapped up in a more safety blanket. I’m not a true believer in God, because I would have to meet that person or whatever it is, but from what I experienced, I do believe there’s a higher power, like maybe a higher energy source. That feeling you get is maybe God. Something more powerful was there with me.</p> <p>“I don’t know how long I was gone; I would say a few minutes, because when I came to, I was in the ICU and I was blown up like a balloon. I had never had that issue before. I looked like the Michelin Man. I was told it was from lack of oxygen and that my short-term memory for a long time wasn’t great. I couldn’t remember from minute to minute what I was doing. Something happened, but [the doctors] wouldn’t confirm it completely, but I know I died, because of what happened. If that’s not dying, I don’t know what it was. I knew I was dead, but I could still think.</p> <p>“Before I had that surgery, I was still in my 30s. I was going out with my friends all the time and drinking a lot, because I was in pain a lot, and if I drank I didn’t have pain. I wasn’t going down the best path: I wasn’t an alcoholic, but I would go out once a week and party to the extreme. And after the surgery I did a 360. I got rid of all the bad people that were in my life, and turned my life completely around. It made me realize that life was too short, and anything can happen to you. Then I had my son in 2007. It was a life-changing experience.”</p> <p><a href="/blog/category/web-extras" target="_blank"><em>Click here for more web extras.</em></a></p>John ThomasonTue, 03 Mar 2015 15:54:00 +0000 ExtrasWeb Extra: Spicy Chorizo<h3><span>George Patti shares his recipe for a signature sandwich at </span>M.E.A.T. Eatery &amp; Taproom<span>.</span></h3> <p>The all-American hamburger is as flexible as an Olympic gymnast, capable of bending, twisting and contorting to accommodate just about any culinary guise and gilding the inventive cook can imagine.</p> <p>No one knows this better than George Patti, chef-partner (with Tom Smith) of <a href="" target="_blank">M.E.A.T.</a> in Boca Raton (<em>980 N. Federal Highway, 561/419-2600</em>). Being a restaurant that celebrates the pleasures of, well … duh … the burger occupies a prominent place on M.E.A.T.’s menu, whether as elemental as a 5-ounce patty with cheese, lettuce and tomato (the Nancy Pants) or as nontraditional as Patti’s house-made chorizo with one of the chef’s inventive flavored mayonnaises.</p> <p>Which is a pretty sneaky way of introducing this issue’s deconstructed dish, M.E.A.T.’s Chorizo Patti Sandwich. It’s a lot easier than you might expect. And you can (and should) try this at home.</p> <p><strong>SPICY HOUSE-MADE CHORIZO</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/meat.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p>2.5 pounds ground pork</p> <p>1/2 cup cold white wine</p> <p>4 teaspoons paprika</p> <p>2 teaspoon salt</p> <p>2.5 teaspoons minced garlic</p> <p>2 teaspoon cayenne</p> <p>1 teaspoon ground cumin</p> <p>1 teaspoon dried oregano</p> <p>1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper</p> <p>Make sure pork is well-chilled. Mix all ingredients in bowl and stuff into casings or form into patties. Grill or pan-fry and serve with American cheese, fried egg and aioli.</p> <p><strong>CHIMICHURRI AIOLI</strong></p> <p>1/2 shallot</p> <p>1/2 tablespoon chopped garlic</p> <p>1 lime, juiced</p> <p>1 bunch each, cilantro and flat-leaf parsley</p> <p>1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce</p> <p>1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar</p> <p>1/2 teaspoon each, salt, sugar and red pepper flakes</p> <p>6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil</p> <p>1 1/4 cup mayonnaise</p> <p>Puree all ingredients except mayonnaise in blender or food processor. Fold in mayonnaise and refrigerate until ready to serve.</p> <p><a href="/blog/category/web-extras" target="_blank"><em>Click here for more web extras.</em></a></p>magazineTue, 03 Mar 2015 15:50:00 +0000 ExtrasWeb Extra: Solar or Bust<h3>Why aren’t we capitalizing on our most noteworthy resource, the sun? Here’s one more report from our environmental feature in the March/April issue.</h3> <p><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/environmentalstory2.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>For the Sunshine State, we sure are terrible about using solar power. Consider this: less than one-tenth of 1 percent of the state’s power comes from solar. If that’s not enough to shame you, even New Jersey produces more.</p> <p>The simple reason for this discrepancy is that the state’s main power companies have lobbied hard to keep wind and solar from expanding, says George Cavros, a Fort Lauderdale attorney who oversees the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy’s work in Florida. The state’s two largest, Florida Power &amp; Light and Duke Energy, have been successful in beating down even simple policy changes that are standard elsewhere, Cavros says.</p> <p>The power companies fear an expansion into solar and wind for the obvious reason: a decrease in demand for their product. But there are also more complicated concerns that have borne true elsewhere, like in Europe. If Floridians installed solar in mass numbers, it would lead to a dramatic decrease in the need for power plants. When the sun didn’t shine for a rainy day, however, it would mean the plants would suddenly need to crank back up to full production, leaving power companies forced to keep costly plants at the ready at all times.</p> <p>Out of these fears, the power companies have lobbied lawmakers to make clean energy less accessible than elsewhere. Consider the incentives many states offer to homeowners who install solar panels in the form of tax breaks that repay them for a portion of the costs. Not in Florida.</p> <p>Or there’s the rule that allows solar power companies to install free solar systems on roofs in other states and then sell the power to the homeowner. Typically the cost is less than half of what consumers would pay to a power company. It’s illegal here but not elsewhere.</p> <p>“It’s not that these other places are sunnier than Florida. They’re not,” Cavros says. “It just comes down to policy.”</p> <p>This has all cost Florida jobs, according to Environmental Entrepreneurs, a trade group representing solar installers. Only 11,000 Floridians have jobs in the solar industry, fewer than even Massachusetts. That single fact alone might help lead to change. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has talked jobs over almost any other concern, and a policy that’s costing more of them might lead to the state to finally allow for solar expansion.</p> <p>On the bright side, there’s also this: only two more states have more solar potential than Florida. So solar power is there; we’re just waiting for policy change.</p> <p><a href="/blog/category/web-extras" target="_blank"><em>Click here for more web extras.</em></a></p>magazineTue, 03 Mar 2015 15:43:00 +0000 ExtrasBoating &amp; Beach Bash Your Ticket To A Great Saturday<p><img alt="" height="200" src="/site_media/uploads/beachbash.png" width="305">There is no day better than Saturday—but there is one Saturday this spring that we especially love—a feel-good celebration dedicated to people with disabilities.</p> <p>South Florida’s Annual Boating and Beach Bash for People with Disabilities ( will celebrate its 7th Anniversary on Saturday March 21, 2015. The Bash has grown to become the largest, free, fun-day in America for children, adults and Purple Heart recipients with physical and/or intellectual challenges, and their caregivers.</p> <p>A brainchild of Boca resident Jay Van Vechten, it’s a day when caregivers and disabled people alike get a break, a respite, a whole slew of diversions and activities to come out of themselves and into a world of play and warmth and caring and fun. One in five Americans—and one in four in Palm Beach County—have disabilities seen or unseen. This is their day, and it’s a Saturday to cherish.</p> <p>Each year it’s held in Spanish River Park, and activities range from arts and crafts and boat rides, to a fun zone, barbecue, and a petting zoo—you name it. The highlight of the event is the opportunity to enjoy a boat ride aboard a flotilla of private yachts along the Intracoastal Waterway. All boats are donated by members of Royal Palm Yacht &amp; Country Club in Boca Raton. The Bash is completely organized and run by community volunteers and is funded through private donations and sponsorship.</p> <p>Please attend this very special Saturday, March 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and better, please donate to the day. You can call 561/715-2622, or visit; Your help will give joy to some people who could really use it.</p>Marie SpeedTue, 03 Mar 2015 13:34:00 +0000 Bites: New Bakery &amp; Buffet<p><img alt="" height="366" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/bakery_of_france.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>West Boca fans of delicate French pastries, lacy crepes, sophisticated sandwiches and other fine bistro fare now no longer have to cross I-95 to get their fix with the debut of a second <a href="" target="_blank">Bakery of France</a> (<em>6030 SW 18th St</em>.) in the Shoppes at Village Pointe. I’m a huge fan of their croissants, so light and flaky they practically levitate, as well as their lunch-sized composed salads and crepes that come with everything from smoked salmon and brie to Nutella. Both the newbie and the original Federal Highway locations are open for breakfast, lunch and Sunday brunch.</p> <p><img alt="" height="273" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/santo.jpg" width="490"></p> <p>The long-vacant Gary Woo location in Boca now has a new tenant. It’s <a href="" target="_blank">Santo’s Modern American Buffet &amp; Sushi</a> (<em>3400 N. Federal Hwy., 561/923-9378</em>), sibling to its popular Coconut Creek parent. The lengthy menu features an extensive selection of salads, soups and entrees ranging from stir-fries to grilled steak to tuna tacos, along with potstickers, fried rice, lobster bisque and more. There’s also a wide selection of sushi and a raw bar dispensing oysters, mussels, crab legs and other seafood delicacies. It’s open for lunch and dinner daily, plus weekend brunch.</p>Bill CitaraTue, 03 Mar 2015 09:04:00 +0000 & ReviewsFAU thinks big(ger) and notes on Netanyahu<h3><span>FAU steps up</span></h3> <p><span><img alt="" height="181" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/fau.jpg" width="490"></span></p> <p>John Kelly put Head Football Coach Charlie Partridge on the spot. The second big announcement puts Dr. Daniel Flynn on the spot. </p> <p>The December announcement tied much of FAU’s future to athletics. A $16 million gift from the Schmidt Family Foundation is the start of a campaign to build a multi-discipline athletics/academics complex on the main campus in Boca Raton. Kelly wants the complex, which will cost between $45 million and $50 million, built in two years. He wants the complex to be part of transforming FAU into a national university. Success will require a football team that does better than last year’s 3-9 record – and does better soon and often.</p> <p>On Monday, Kelly put down his second big bet. This one is that FAU can collaborate with Scripps Florida and the Max Planck Florida Institute to make the university’s Jupiter campus a biotechnology hub that in 10 years will attract 3,000 of the best STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) students from around the country and perhaps around the world. And 100 grad students.</p> <p>The STEM number now? Zero.</p> <p>If the goal is lofty, the partnership is predictable. Since starting work last March, Kelly has complained about lack of awareness for the two world-class research facilities on the Honors College campus. In an interview Monday, Kelly called that a “differentiating niche” that FAU can leverage.</p> <p>Essentially, FAU, Scripps and Max Planck will try to offer a combined menu that will draw students and researchers. Example: If FAU can hire a faculty member whose work will complement Scripps, each may pay a share of that person’s salary. Kelly said the three will do “joint planning on priorities" and will “find the best expertise.” Present at Monday’s announcement were Scripps Research Institute CEO James Paulson and Max Planck Florida Institute CEO David Fitzpatrick.</p> <p>FAU, Scripps and Max Planck will work together to improve the cluster’s ability to secure National Institutes of Health grants. Scripps Florida alone has received $400 million, even as NIH’s share of the federal budget has declined. The focus will include start-up companies to develop and market what the research produces.</p> <p>In 2003, when former Gov. Jeb Bush announced the arrival of Scripps to Palm Beach County, then-FAU President Frank Brogan fended off other state universities that wanted a Scripps affiliation. After getting the shut-up done, though, FAU had not tried the put-up. Until Monday.</p> <p>Never spoken all that publicly, but acknowledged privately, is that FAU hasn’t been on the heft level of Scripps and Max Planck. Though the effort to build Scripps at FAU’s Jupiter campus and not way out west on a former citrus grove was successful, the ties were more geographic than academic.</p> <p>Kelly doesn’t just want that to change; he says FAU needs that to change. The guy in charge of the change is Flynn, who in January started as FAU’s vice president for research. Flynn is a breast cancer specialist whose doctoral thesis in Microbilogy/Virology was titled “Conformational changes in the surface glycoproteins E1/E2 of Sindbis virus upon attachment and penetration.”</p> <p>Flynn agrees that FAU’s relationship with Scripps and Max Planck has been “underforming,” adding, “We need to show that we can play on the same field.” He sees the work widening to include area hospitals, such as the Boca Regional and its Marcus Neuroscience Institute.</p> <p>You can’t accuse Kelly of aiming low or of understating. The news release that went out over the weekend promised a “monumental announcement,” and the release that laid out the details referred to the partnership as “groundbreaking.” Put-up time has begun.</p> <h3>Netanyahu news</h3> <p>Many big world and national stories touch Florida start here or affect us. So it is with the world and national story of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address today to a joint session of Congress (10:45 a.m. EST).</p> <p>After New York and Los Angeles, the country’s largest Jewish population is in South Florida. The Anti-Defamation League holds its annual convention at The Breakers in Palm Beach, and its Florida office is in Boca Raton. The American Jewish Committee has regional offices in Boca Raton and Miami. The Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County complements the work of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, whose annual conference in Washington concludes today, has an office in Fort Lauderdale. The director of the Daniel S. Abraham Center for Middle East Peace is Robert Wexler, who represented southwest Palm Beach and northwest Broward counties in Congress. In this part of the world, the Middle East is a local story.</p> <p>So there’s been lots of talk, public and private, in South Florida since news broke that House Speaker John Boehner had invited Netanyahu without consulting the White House. That breach of protocol is without precedent. Moreover, Netanyahu intends his speech as a rebuke of President Obama’s efforts—with five other countries—to negotiate a deal on Iran’s nuclear program.</p> <p>In two weeks, Israel holds elections, with Netanyahu’s party facing a strong challenge in part because of concern that his decision to accept Boehner’s invitation and insult the Democrats has jeopardized the longstanding consensus in Washington that Israel is a bipartisan issue. Almost everyone acknowledges that Netanyahu will use his speech as an election commercial.</p> <p>Reaction from Jewish groups varies, sometimes in interesting ways. Last week, ADL National Director Abe Foxman issued a statement saying, “While the original decision by Prime Minister Netanyahu to accept the invitation to address Congress without consulting the Democratic leadership was, in our view, ill-advised, now that it is happening, the speech deserves support from both sides of the aisle.” Foxman urged lawmakers to “transcend the political controversy” and “underscore the broad support for Israel’s security.”</p> <p>Foxman added that the United States and Israel “have a common interest” in making sure that Iran “should not have the capability of building a nuclear weapon.” The interesting thing is the use of the word “capability,” Foxman seems to differ from Netanyahu’s stated position that Iran should not even be able to enrich uranium. The Bush administration tried unsuccessfully in 2003 to lay down that marker. Foxman noted the invitation to meet with Democratic senators angry about the speech was a hopeful sign. Unfortunately, Netanyahu declined the offer.</p> <p>Matthew C. Levin, president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County, noted that recent terrorists attacks in Europe “underscore the virulent anti-Semitism facing the Jewish people in part of this world. The prime minister’s warnings about the intent of the radical fundamentalists of Hezbollah, ISIL, Al Qaeda and the murderous regime in Iran (which) seeks nuclear weapons should be heeded by Western governments that believe democracy is central to their freedom.</p> <p>“The shared values of democracy, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom of the press are just a sample of what draws the United States and Israel together. . .Under this banner, I salute the prime minister’s visit to America.” The interesting thing is the talking past the speech and focusing on the alliance.</p> <p>According to Rachel Miller, who runs the Boca office, the American Jewish Committee “has refrained from commenting on Netanyahu’s speech before Congress.” The interesting thing is the lack of comment on such a big issue from a group that calls itself “the leading global Jewish advocacy organization.”</p> <p>As for AIPAC, which considers itself the most important pro-Israel lobby group, an Israeli journalist reported that AIPAC opposed Netanyahu’s visit because of the open rebuke to a sitting president and the damage it could cause to U.S.-Israeli relations. AIPAC, which also was blindsided by Boehner’s announcement – though it has supported Netanyahu’s criticism of the talks with Iran -- then denied that it had opposed the speech. Netanyahu got lots of applause during his speech Monday before AIPAC’s annual meeting in Washington.</p> <p>For many strong supporters of Israel in this area, it is an awkward moment that they are trying to get past. Fortunately, despite Netanyahu’s attitude, the Obama administration continues to advocate on Israel’s behalf. Just recently, as commentators in Israel noted, the administration intervened to ease hostilities when an Israeli air strike in Syria killed an Iranian general. The administration continues to oppose efforts by the Palestinians to take Israel to the International Criminal Court, and the U.S. plans more money for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.</p> <p>Some Democrats will boycott the speech rather than become Netanyahu campaign props. I wouldn’t expect that from South Florida lawmakers, but even if they attend don’t assume that they agree with the prime minister on policy or his decision to give the speech. Netanyahu has pleased some of Israel’s strongest supporters in South Florida, but he also has angered even some of Israeli’s greatest friends in South Florida. They just won’t go on the record with their anger.</p> <p><strong>••••••••</strong></p> <p><em>You can email Randy Schultz at</em></p> <center><a href="/blog/tag/city-watch/" target="_blank">For more City Watch blogs, click here.</a></center> <p><strong>About the Author</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Randy Schultz</strong> was born in Hartford, Conn., and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1974. He has lived in South Florida since then, and in Boca Raton since 1985. Schultz spent nearly 40 years in daily journalism at the Miami Herald and Palm Beach Post, most recently as editorial page editor at the Post. His wife, Shelley, is director of The Learning Network at Pine Crest School. His son, an attorney, and daughter-in-law and three grandchildren also live in Boca Raton. His daughter is a veterinarian who lives in Baltimore.</em></p>Randy SchultzTue, 03 Mar 2015 06:00:00 +0000 WatchCommunityReview: DaVinci’s of Boca<p><strong>6000 Glades Road, Boca Raton, 561/362-8466</strong></p> <p><strong><img alt="" height="327" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/davinci.jpg" width="490"></strong></p> <p class="p1">PRICES: Entrées $17–$44</p> <p class="p1">HOURS: Mon.–Thurs. 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 11 a.m.–11 p.m.,</p> <p class="p1">Sun. noon–10 p.m.</p> <p class="p1">WEBSITE: <a href="" target="_blank"></a></p> <p>Back in the day, if you were hungry for a slab of gray meat cooked to the texture of Kevlar or a piece of fried fish oozing oil like the Deepwater Horizon, you had options.</p> <p>One place, for certain, that you could count on for a terrible meal: the local shopping mall, especially its venerable food court, a pulsating palace of indigestion that insulted the cuisines of countries from around the world.</p> <p>However, at places like Town Center at Boca Raton, not only is the court deciding in favor of the diner, so is the rest of the mall’s restaurant offerings. Is there any place where a man can find simple, honest, just plain bad food?</p> <p>Certainly not at DaVinci’s. Devotees of crummy dining would tremble at the sight of the Carvelli family’s spacious Italian restaurant at Town Center (in the spot once occupied by Legal Sea Foods). They’d despair at the professionalism of its servers, grieve at the depth of its thoughtfully chosen wine list, blanch at the carefully prepared food that satisfies both traditionalists and the more adventurous with equal aplomb.</p> <p>The rest of us, though, can only rejoice. Start with DaVinci’s burrata Caprese, an elaborate salad featuring a ball of fresh mozzarella filled with the creamy leavings of the cheese-making process, artfully plated with prosciutto, smoked tomato jam, balsamic syrup and arugula. It’s a combo that seems wildly overwrought yet manages to work perfectly.</p> <p>Much less complicated is a giant platter of fried calamari—crisp, golden rings and squiggles that are an ideal foil for a bright-tasting marinara. Wagyu carpaccio is betrayed slightly by a heavy hand on the salt. Otherwise, the translucent petals of designer beef offer a rich, meaty complement to more arugula, shaved Parmesan, thin coins of black truffle and a tangy lemon vinaigrette. Pastas come “classico” (think lasagna) and “moderno” (lobster ravioli), both of which live up to the billing.</p> <p>Lasagna is hearty and filling, much improved by the use of fresh pasta. Ravioli are as delicate as the lasagna is lusty, caressed with a bronze cognac cream sauce.</p> <p>Osso buco is terrific. If the accompanying wild mushroom risotto is a bit gummy, it’s made up for by a gum-tender veal shank scattered with gremolata and crowned with a veal bone that begs prospecting for its quivering, luscious marrow. Marco Prime sea bass is a riff on Nobu’s miso-marinated fish, here a snowy fillet given a sweet-salty ginger-miso glaze and served atop addictive scallion-flecked polenta “fries.”</p> <p>Desserts gently tweak tradition to salutary effect. Cannoli arrive as a trio of crunchy, finger-sized tubes jacketing ricotta infused with Grand Marnier, chocolate and Key lime juice. Tiramisu combines the classic espresso-spiked ladyfingers with all-the-rage sea salt and caramel, the latter whipped into mascarpone, the former in a smoky toffee topping.</p> <p>We didn’t exactly need another reason to visit Town Center, but DaVinci’s is as good of an excuse as any.</p> <p><em>For more on the South Florida dining scene, pick up the March/April issue of </em>Boca Raton <em>magazine. Subscribe to the magazine here.</em></p>Bill CitaraMon, 02 Mar 2015 16:35:00 +0000 The MagazineNews & ReviewsQ&amp;A with Kathy Griffin<h3>Stand-up comedian, author, co-host of “Fashion Police” on E!</h3> <p><img alt="" height="337" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-02_at_4.16.20_pm.png" width="488"></p> <p>Over the past 10 years, Kathy Griffin has recorded 18 stand-up comedy specials, appeared in more than 35 movies or television shows and penned a New York Times best-selling memoir. Her net worth is estimated at $20 million, and the ubiquitous and fearless television personality is currently carrying the torch for the late Joan Rivers as co-host of E!’s “Fashion Police.”</p> <p>It’s safe to say that Griffin is no longer a “D-Lister;” she’s just played one on TV. And she continues to play one in her indefatigable stand-up act (she recorded four specials in 2011 alone, including “50 and Not Pregnant” and “Tired Hooker”).</p> <p>Her comedic style is dominated by embellished encounters with even higher-bankrolled celebrities, in whose presence she has stealthily managed to bask. The targets of her satire and ridicule run the showbiz gamut, and some happen to be her friends.</p> <p>On William Shatner: “He is like my favorite red-faced, bloated booze bag.” On Oprah Winfrey: “I prefer big Oprah. I know Oprah wants to be skinny Oprah, but her head is too gigantic to fit on a skinny body.” On Lindsay Lohan: “I know that [she] has lost a lot of weight recently, due to diet, Pilates and crack. Without the diet and Pilates.”</p> <p>It’s no surprise that some her comments have generated backlash. She essentially outed Anderson Cooper during one of her annual appearances on CNN’s New Year’s Eve coverage.</p> <p>She’s been denounced by the Catholic League and been called a “pinhead” by Bill O’Reilly. She’s been banned, then unbanned, then re-banned from “The View,” and she’s similarly weathered bans from the Apollo Theatre, Jay Leno’s version of “The Tonight Show” and “Hannah Montana.”</p> <p>Controversy aside, one of the funniest comedians in the country remains a formidable force on the stand-up circuit, not to mention a staunch advocate for the U.S. military and LGBT rights. As she prepared for two South Florida appearances, she proved to be as sharp and witty as ever in an interview with Boca Raton.</p> <p><strong>Q1 You’ve always come off as a monologist as much as a comedian. Are you influenced by long-form storytellers as well as great comics?</strong></p> <p>Great question. My style is in fact closer to a monologist, or as my pal Sarah Silverman calls me, “a raconteur.” My act is really stories with a bunch of jokes inside them. Of course, I am influenced by all the great comics—female comedians, in particular. Bill Cosby, not so much.</p> <p><strong>Q2 You’ve had several “first female comedian to …” distinctions. Why do you think comedy is still such a male-dominated field?</strong></p> <p>Well, chicks are just funnier. The boys know it, they can’t keep up, and this is the only way they know how to fight back. Actually, the stigma and sexism is still very real. In fact, I had to stop watching “Mad Men,” Season Two. Does Peggy become a stand-up comedian in the finale? I hope so.</p> <p><strong>Q3 What’s been the best—and worst—celebrity reaction to a joke you’ve told about them?</strong></p> <p>The best: Jerry Seinfeld wrote me a hilarious letter in which he “wishes me much good luck in whatever it is that (I) do.”</p> <p>Worst: The late, great Whitney Houston waving a very angry finger in my face, saying, “Don’t ever talk about me.” I had to talk about that.</p> <p><strong>Q4 What is your writing routine like, and how do you know when material is finally stage-ready?</strong></p> <p>I’m writing right now! I’m always writing in my head. Pretty much every situation I see or am immersed in, I start to try and spin in a funny way that may soon end up onstage where it belongs.</p> <p>Just know that I will be thinking of new things to put in my show the moment I hit the stage in West Palm.</p> <p><em>For more from our interview with Kathy Griffin, pick up the March/April issue of </em>Boca Raton <em>magazine. </em></p>John ThomasonMon, 02 Mar 2015 16:33:00 +0000 & EventsIn The MagazineFace Time: Mary Sol Gonzalez<p><span>Owner, Image 360; Diamond Award Recipient</span></p> <p><img alt="" height="600" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/marysol.jpg" width="400"></p> <p>Mary Sol Gonzalez never thought in a million years she’d be a businesswoman.</p> <p>Or that she’d be this year’s recipient of the prestigious Diamond Award from the Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce. That would have been a long shot for the sheltered young Venezuelan woman with a psychology degree who left her parents’ home to marry husband Abilio in 1986.</p> <p>The young family spent the next 20-some years bouncing around the world from one corporate post to another, for companies like Warner-Lambert and Pepsi-Cola. First, there was Morristown, N.J., then the Philippines, then on to places like Ann Arbor, Mich., Rio de Janiero, Mexico City, Seattle, Switzerland. Abilio traveled 90 percent of the time.</p> <p>Most wives with a child would have held on for dear life, trying to adjust to a continually shifting New Normal. But Gonzalez was built a little differently; she plunged into each new community and got involved, from helping to “adopt” an orphanage in Manila to wildlife conservation in Geneva.</p> <p>It’s the kind of symmetry that ultimately followed her to Boca Raton, with one main difference: She became a business owner.</p> <p>In 2009, the family opened a Signs Now franchise in Margate. With her semi-retired husband in more of an advisory role, Gonzalez took the bull by the horns from the start, growing the company by 200 percent in its first few years. It is now known as Image 360, operating out of Boca Raton since February 2014.</p> <p>“At the beginning it was hard,” she says. “I didn’t have a sign background, and my husband had been in the corporate world all his life. We wanted to have something that was family-owned that would allow us to be local, that was the first thing.”</p> <p>The company produces high-tech signage and logos for vehicles, including wraps, and does a lot of work for the real estate, construction and trade show industries. Gonzalez sees the company as more than one that makes signs; she stresses the fact that she works closely with customers from the outset, identifying their needs, and advising them accordingly.</p> <p>“Running the company [for me] was a shock at the beginning,” she says. “I was a little bit afraid. One day I said, “This is it—I will go there and be myself. What I know is how to relate to people and do the best [for them].”</p> <p><em>For more from this year’s Diamond Award Recipient, pick up the March/April issue of </em>Boca Raton <em>magazine.</em></p>Marie SpeedMon, 02 Mar 2015 16:29:00 +0000 The MagazineNewsAllergy Season: Gesundheit!<p>Don’t let the symptoms of the season – like sneeze after sneeze – take the spring out of your step. A Boca doctor advises how to keep allergies at bay.</p> <p><img alt="" height="581" src="/site_media/uploads/March%202015/screen_shot_2015-03-02_at_4.21.51_pm.png" width="450"></p> <p><strong>The Big Offenders</strong></p> <p>Some of the worst allergens in South Florida are hard to escape, according to Fernanda de Oliveira, a family practice doctor in Boca Raton (7301-A W. Palmetto Park Road, Suite 100-B, 561/955-5761).</p> <p>■ Grass: The St. Augustine variety is a year-round allergen in South Florida.</p> <p>■ Tree pollens: High season for these runs from February to May, according to de Oliveira; locally, these include oak, pine and birch trees.</p> <p>■ Mold: This wreaks indoor and outdoor havoc throughout the year, de Oliveira says, anywhere it’s wet, damp or humid. Yard debris with fallen leaves is a mold haven. In the house, you might find it around pipes, in the bathroom— or anywhere there’s a leak.</p> <p><strong>How Does It Feel?</strong></p> <p>Allergies can make life miserable. Symptoms, according to de Oliveira, include watery, swollen, itchy eyes; runny nose; sneezing; and itchy throat. At their worst, allergy symptoms can cause lower respiratory problems, including coughing, wheezing and trouble breathing. The more dangerous symptoms are common in people who also have asthma, she says.</p> <p><strong>How to Feel Better</strong></p> <p>■ Check the forecast: “Pay attention to weather,” de Oliveira says.</p> <p>“If you have particularly warm or windy days, you’ll have more pollen in the air. On those days, you might want to plan more indoor than outdoor activities.” Another clue that allergies might be bad? West winds (from west to east).</p> <p>Living close to the beach is better for people with allergies.</p> <p>■ Do your research: Find local pollen counts online and during television news., for example, offers daily pollen counts for grass, tree, weed and mold.</p> <p>■ Timing is everything: If you have to be outside, consider this: Pollen counts are lower in the afternoon than at any time of the day.</p> <p>■ Cleanliness is next to …: When you’re done with outdoor activities, change your clothes, and wash your hair and skin to help eliminate allergens.</p> <p>■ Keep it cool: Whether in the car or at home, consider keeping windows closed and running the air conditioning to keep out allergens—and keep air circulating.</p> <p>A high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter can help prevent mold from growing and allergens from invading your space.</p> <p>■ Use protection: If you are highly allergic and have to be outside when pollen counts and mold spores are in force, consider wearing a mask.</p> <p>■ Don’t play dirty: It’s not the plants that grow mold in the home. It’s the soil. So limit your indoor plants.</p> <p>