#SWFL Top Picks for A&E enthusiasts May 2-9, 2013

Posted on May 2, 2013

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580371_619657071395634_700246119_nThursday, May 2
Steam it up with soap stars
110 In The Shade, the musical based on the play “the Rainmaker” opens tonight at TheatreZone and features television soap stars Jim & Kassie DePaiva. In the hot and drought-stricken American southwest, spinster Lizzie Curry’s advances are rebuffed by File, the divorced sheriff. Charismatic, traveling con man Bill Starbuck restores Lizzie’s self-confidence, all the while promising the local farmers he can provide them some much-needed rain. The play shows through Sunday May 12, 2013. TheatreZone is located at the G&L Theatre, 13275 Livingston Rd, Naples. Tickets start at $43. For more information head to www.theatrezone-florida.com.

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UNIT A in downtown Fort Myers is a must stop during Art Walk, the first Friday of every month.

Friday, May 3
First Friday=Art Walk, Duh
Downtown Fort Myers shoots at all pistons during Art Walk. From Space 39 to the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center and everywhere  in between, you can be certain to find fresh, undervalued art, great eats and exciting people poring over the recently renovated streets that course with the energy of a thriving arts scene. Be sure to get down to UNIT A at 1922 Evans Ave Unit A, Fort Myers for art by Marcus Jansen and Jonas Stirner with a free closing party. Last month’s was sick! For more information head to www.unitaspace.com Facebook event at: https://www.facebook.com/events/439207442835898/

936246_10151584860291649_983665045_nSaturday, May 4
Dress up and go to the only place celebrating the Kentucky Derby properly
Big hat. Check. Mint juleps. Check. Southern fare. Check. Bets are that you will not enjoy the Kentucky Derby any more than you will at the SBDAC this Saturday.

“An Evening at the Kentucky Derby” takes place 5:30-9 p.m. and include drinks, dinner, “Run for the Roses” viewing party and fundraiser. It will benefit the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center’s multi-million dollar building restoration project Admission to the event is $125 and includes mint juleps, drinks, and southern fare. Tables are available for $1,000. The evening includes a performance by critically acclaimed jazz singer/ bassist Kate Davis and ensemble.

The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center is located at 2301 First Street, in the downtown Fort Myers River District. For tickets or information, please visit www.sbdac.com or call 239-333-1933. Hit up the Facebook invite page at https://www.facebook.com/events/138597906324197/?ref=ts&fref=ts

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Celtic Woman will perform at Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall May 5.

Sunday, May 5
Celtic Woman
Singing sensation Celtic Woman brings their latest show to the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall.  Under the distinct musical direction of Emmy-nominated music producer, David Downes, this spectacular musical experience features Celtic Woman performing classic Irish tunes, such as “The Water Is Wide,” “Green Grow the Rushes,” and “The Parting Glass;” timeless pop anthems such as “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “Sailing” and inspirational songs including “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and “Ave Maria,” all with the signature Celtic Woman sound.  Don’t miss this opportunity to see Celtic Woman as you’ve never seen them before.

Sunday, May 5 performances take place at 2 and 7 p.m. The Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall is located at 8099 College Pkwy, Fort Myers. For more information call 239.489.3033. Tickets start at $42. To purchase or for more information head to http://bbmannpah.com
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Reel Big Fish performs at SunFest May 5, 2013.


Drive to West Palm Beach for the conclusion of SunFest with fireworks
So Sunday is the last day of the 5-day event and will include Reel Big Fish, Less Than Jake, Barenaked Ladies, to name a few, and include a blast of a fireworks show. For Sunday’s event lineup head to http://lineup.sunfest.com/events/2013/05/05/ Tickets for the day are $37. For more information head to www.sunfest.com

479277_605082502837355_2132860957_oMonday, May 6
Wake the Dead at Riverdale High School
I’m not sure if I’m going to be entirely converted but this seems to be an opportunity to enjoy some fresh entertainment. This is ‘a Christian club’ that is putting on this event that will include  a rapper, a dance group, a live band, a powerful word, dramas and skits, a mini concert, food, and more. Sound fun? I’m there. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to bring my Bible or not, though.

The free annual event will take place at  Riverdale High School’s Auditorium at 6:30 p.m. The auditorium is located at 2600 Buckingham Rd. Fort Myers. To join their Facebook page head to https://www.facebook.com/events/436318616461678/

9948_10152158676108029_668700111_nTuesday, May 7
Feel the Heat with Menopause the Musical
This musical cracked me up for most of the night. And I’m not even going through menopause. The premise is simple. “Four women at a lingerie sale have nothing in common except a black lace bra … and memory loss, hot flashes, night sweats, not enough sex, too much sex and more. This hilarious musical parody set to classic tunes from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s will have you dancing in the aisles.” The execution is spectacular this is not one to miss. Tickets start at $47 for dining and show. Call 239-278-4422 or head to 1380 Colonial Boulevard or online sales at www.broadwaypalm.com now. Menopause plays through May 18.

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Eric Raddatz presents an award from the Fort Myers Film Festival at 2012 Lee County Student Film Festival in Fort Myers. Pictured are the winners from Riverdale High School and NBC2s Robert Van Winkle

Wednesday, May 8
Red Carpet Awards night—Fort Myers Film Festival supports Lee Schools at event
Lee County School’s Student Film Festival is doing something right—getting youngins excited about filmmaking here in SWFL. The Fort Myers Film Festival and myself are proud to support it and will be at the  Red Carpet Awards night at 6:30 p.m. at the Lee County Public Education Center. The doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the show will include local musicians, photo op with limousine, a special performance by Glen The Wild Wizard of the Edison and Ford Winter Estate, a special overall Best of Show presentation from Eric Raddatz of the Fort Myers Film Festival, beautiful awards and cool prizes. This is a free event and all are welcome to attend. The Lee County Public Education Center is located at 2855 Colonial Blvd  Fort Myers. See you there.

ipadLooking for more?
If you want to check out great local suggestions I suggest you pick up a Florida Weekly. They are definitely in the know. Here is there most recent Destinations Guide. http://www.floridaweekly.com/documents/DestinationsGuide2013/flip

Lush French Bakery provides delicious food

Lush French Bakery provides delicious food

Here for the first time? Here are some must tries
 Lush French Bakery  offers freshly baked pastries, baguette, croissant and breads still filling the room with the warm scent of baked goods hot from the oven. Looking for the best coffee spot & donut spot in town. Bennett’s Fresh Roast. Their donuts are heaven. The Beaches of Fort Myers, Sanibel and Captiva are obvious options.

Firestone’s grand view
The grand owner of The Edison Restaurant and Ford’s Garage has completed the holy trinity of Uncommon Friends with The Firestone – Grille, Martini Bar & Sky Lounge. The genius gentlemen who once spent their inventive time here could not have imagined the delicious trifecta of restaurants bearing their names coming to fruition. Not to mention the fantastic view. Or could they?  Thank Daniel Kearns with a slap on the back for infusing Downtown Fort Myers with another out-of-the-park place to wine, dine, drink and party in the ever burgeoning River District—and right in front of the recently opened basin walk. The Firestone – Grille, Martini Bar & Sky Lounge is located at 2224 Bay Street, Fort Myers. For more information call 239.337.3473.

Best Food Downtown—Hands Down
Twisted Vine has become the go to restaurant when it comes to the most delicious, locally grown, eclectic cuisine, prepared delicately for the most wonderful culinary delights. Be sure to go here while you are in town. Twisted Vine is located at 2214 Bay St., Fort Myers, right next to the recently opened basin walk. Call them at 226-1687 or head to www.twistedvinebistro.com for more information. You will see me there!

—Eric Raddatz is occasionally surprised as to all of the cool events that are happening in #SWFL and likes to share them with you. Follow him at www.twitter.com/ericraddatz for more updates! When in doubt be sure to pick up a Florida Weekly while in town or head to www.floridaweekly.com

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