Top picks for #SWFL arts & entertainment enthusiasts October 16-25, 2015

Posted on October 16, 2015


I have to admit. I’m not a big zombie lover. But since we have the biggest zombie party in the world right here in Fort Myers this weekend with a kickoff VIP party at Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center on Friday night (that I’m hosting) with the big event taking place on Saturday, October 17, there is plenty of creepy buzz in town. There are plenty of things to do that aren’t zombie, though, so there is something for everyone. (Please note my Chicago Cubs will be playing the National League Championship Series starting Friday so while it is not arts related—#GoCubsGo.)

Ashley Kellam and Rachel BurttramFriday, October 16, 2015
Play with it
Toys in the Attic by Lillian Hellman has struck my interest for several reasons. Here are three. 1.) Rachel Burttram Powers is one of my fav actresses in town. 2) It is directed by Stephanie Davis, she is delightfully creative. 3) It is at Theatre Conspiracy so they will not hold back at being edgy. Show plays at 8 p.m. 10091 McGregor Blvd.  Tickets are $24. More information is available at Theatre Conspiracy is located at 10091 McGregor Blvd. For more info head to

shutterstock_226309579Saturday, October 17, 2015
Zombicon 9 gets freaky, and filmy
Fallout :1985 a massive zombie-themed charity street fest takes place in downtown Fort Myers where you can expect over 30 live performances on five stages. The stages will showcase the eclectic blend of bands and DJs you have come to expect from Zombicon and this year we have some acts that will blow you away. The street will be lined with thousands as this is one of, if not the biggest, zombie dress up in the world. The Fort Myers Film Festival is throwing a 48-hour challenge film fest during so there will be tons of filming. For more info head to

Screen Shot 2015-10-16 at 4.16.57 PMHilarious Tracy Morgan back from a tragic accident hosts SNL
Tracy Morgan is one of the most hilarious comedians ever to grace the SNL studios with memorable characters from Brian Fellows to Astronaut Jones. He nearly died in a terrible car accident last year but after some time now he is getting back on his feet and the warm welcome back to host SNL. This is definitely not one to miss. Saturday Night Life airs at 11:30 EST on NBC. Check out his promo for the upcoming show here.

million dollar quartetSunday, October 18, 2015
Million Dollar Quartet

Enjoy this Tony® Award-Winning musical is inspired by the electrifying true story when four rock ‘n’ roll icons; Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash came together as a red-hot band for one unforgettable night. Relive one of the greatest rock ‘n’ roll jam sessions in history. Dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. in the main auditorium. Ticket prices range from $33 – $53 with group discounts available for parties of 20 or more. Tickets are now on sale and can be reserved by calling (239) 278-4422, by visiting or by stopping by the box office at 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.

Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 4.11.28 PMMonday, October 19 & Tuesday, October 20, 2015
Normal Miller Unplugged
Norma Miller, the Queen of Swing, and SWFL resident is one of the only acquaintances with a Wikipedia page. At 92 she is embarking on a comedy tour, being filmed by John Biffar. They are shooting at Tertini’s on 7050 Crystal Drive in Fort Myers on October 19-20 at 7 p.m. Be a part of the film by rsvping Guests are asked to dress in ‘Swing Attire.’ I’m thinking zuit suit but you never know when things might get a little freaky.

CRnJyGuVEAAPvHTStar Wars episode 7 releases new trailer
I have no idea why Disney has decided to release the new trailer during Monday Night Football. I mean, I guess this could be the last possible demographic who has not embraced Star Wars or something? Anyway the big question seems to be will we see Luke or not. His image is noticeably missing on the freshly revealed poster so I hope we see some of him tonight. I really detest the NFL so much that I may just wait until after the big reveal tonight. Previous reveals all can be seen tweeted from the official Star Wars account. December 18, 2015 is only 59 days away, FYI.

ROGUE-LAWYER-3DTuesday, October 20, 2015
Grisham’s new novel comes out
Go Rogue with John Grisham’s new novel by welcoming the Honorable Sebastian Rudd, certainly not the only rogue lawyer in the country but one of the specialty’s more colorful practitioners. He is in no way your typical street lawyer. Also since many of his books turn into awesome films look forward to this one hitting the theaters 2024. I’m sure this one will not disappoint. For more info head to his website here.

IMG_6006Wednesday, October 21, 2015
Go Back to the Future—NOW
Back to the Future nerds know what day Marty transports to in the future. October 21, 2015. Get out your best BTTF digs, startup the DeLorean and come out for more fun than you can imagine as BellTower Fort Myers is screening all three movies in a row starting at 5 p.m.  A pre and post party is being held at CRU by Fort Myers Film Festival.

Piker Jersey(1)Thursday, October 22, 2015
“Yesterday, It Was Sunny: A Solo Exhibition of Work by T.L. Solien” curated by John Loscuito
Head down to FGCU’s Main Gallery in the Arts Complex and enjoy Artist Talk at 5 p.m. followed by an opening reception, until 7pm where you can meet and greet artist T.L. Solien. T.L. Solien is known for his personal, surrealist paintings combining everyday objects in haunting landscapes and interiors. For this exhibition the technique of collage features prominently in the development of his works. Solien’s freeform collages will be on display alongside his paintings and drawings, offering a unique glimpse into his narratives and working process. The exhibition runs through November 14, 2015.

The FGCU Main Gallery Arts Complex at Florida Gulf Coast University is located at 10501 FGCU Blvd S in Fort Myers. Fort more information head to  or contact Anica Sturdivant at 239-590-7199.

Screen Shot 2015-08-28 at 3.30.31 PMFriday, October 23, 2015
Florida Rep season opener is a mouth watering comedy
I LOVED, I LOST, I MADE SPAGHETTI by Jacques Lamarre will kick off the Florida Rep’s 2015-16 season in the ArtStage Studio Theatre  through Nov. 1, 2015. There’s a good reason the Rep always gets great reviews. Definitely go see this. The Historic Arcade Theatre is located at 2267 First Street. Tickets start at $25. To purchase go to

CPRPJ3XVAAAu5LQSaturday, October 24, 2015
Get fresh
Join the Alliance for the Arts 10-acre campus every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. to find an exclusive selection of locally grown, caught and cultivated foods and other products available to sample and purchase. Enjoy live entertainment by local musicians and fun activities for kids, gardening classes, free yoga and live cooking by local chefs. Be sure to check out Gina’s authentic Mexican cuisine. Her tamales are unbelievable and her barbacoa, left, is out of this world. The event is free. The tamales are only $3. More information is available at The Alliance is located at 10091 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers.

TVawardMonday, October 25, 2015
Get twisted
Mondays usually are a great day back to work after a fun packed weekend. Be sure to pick up happy hour at Twisted Vine, which become the go to restaurant when it comes to the most delicious, locally grown, eclectic cuisine, prepared delicately for the most wonderful culinary delights. They were just recently awarded with a Wine Spectator recognition, the only one in Fort Myers with such a distinction. Twisted Vine is located at 2214 Bay St., Fort Myers. Call them at 239.226.1687 or head to for more information. You will see me there!

Second Chances 21Tuesday, October 26, 2015
A fresh, original musical by Broadway Palm founder opens
The Off Broadway Palm Theatre is premiering a new musical by PEG’s patriarch and founder Tom Prather. Second Chances: The Thrift Shop Musical plays now through November 7, 2015.  Ticket prices range from $33 – $53 with group discounts available for parties of 20 or more. Tickets are now on sale and can be reserved by calling (239) 278-4422, by visiting or by stopping by the box office at 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.

jelly doughnutWednesday, October 27, 2015
Start your Sunday a bit slower—and sweeter
Looking for the best coffee spot & doughnut spot in town to ease into your Wednesday? Grab a book, write a screenplay or just talk with the coolest SWFL workers at Bennett’s Fresh Roast. Alton Brown bragged “Bennett’s Fresh Roast has the Ft. Myers doughnut market cornered…and with good reason.” Their donuts are heaven. It is also right down the street from Centennial Park and Edison & Ford Winter Estates so go for it—you know you deserve it. Bennett’s Fresh Roast is located at 2011 Bayside Pkwy in Fort Myers.

396994_205317936230622_212791666_nThursday, October 28, 2015
Visit the Eric Raddatz Bridge for fresh fruit, veggies and more
Ok whatever you call the Caloosahatchee Bridge, be sure to come down from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. every Thursday year round in the Centennial Park parking lot 2000 W. First St. for great fresh market items, awesome food trucks, locally produced honey, veggies and more. Be sure to like the Eric Raddatz Bridge Facebook page here.

FMFFTGIM112Monday, November 2, 2015
T.G.I.M. at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center with featured judges Communications Director of Artis-Naples Jonathan Foerster, FGCU professor Mike Donlan, Julia Ditomaso, and musical guest Official Outcome, host Eric Raddatz and co-host Melissa DeHaven. Come get a view of how we view submissions for our festival and have a say whether or not they should make final programming. Come get a view of how we view submissions for our festival and have a say whether or not they should make final programming. There will also be representatives from a film shooting locally called Hanging Millstone looking for some extras for their film.

The popular T.G.I.M. film screening series will be held the first Monday of each month in downtown Fort Myers. T.G.I.M. features short indie films being considered for the sixth annual Fort Myers Film Festival. Those in attendance will have a say in the Fort Myers Film Festival’s April 7-10, 2016 programming. T.G.I.M. takes place at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center in downtown Fort Myers, located at 2301 First Street, Fort Myers. T.G.I.M. offers fresh films, not in distribution, local celebrities and honorary judges, indie music, conversation, drinks and more. Doors open for happy hour at 6:30 p.m. with pizza from Capone’s and coffee from Bennett’s. Films are presented at 7 p.m.

GF1_4952 FMFF Crowd LRAn “afterbuzz” will always be held following T.G.I.M. at the nearby Twisted Vine Bistro, 2214 Bay St., where late night happy hour prices on drinks and appetizers are offered to T.G.I.M. audience members. Twisted Vine was most recently recognized with an excellence award from Wine Spectator, the only restaurant in Fort Myers with that distinction.

A special podcast of attending filmmakers will be taped after each T.G.I.M. at Twisted Vine bistro. To hear that audio podcast go to

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door, by going to or by calling 239.333.1933. To learn more, visit the T.G.I.M. Indie Movies Downtown Facebook page or  Facebook discounts are available at and there are updates on Twitter. Sponsored by Capone’s Pizza, the best in town. Join the afterbuzz at Twisted Vine every Monday after the show for late night happy hour and appetizers.

Screen Shot 2015-09-15 at 4.13.15 PMNovember 23, 2015
Red Hot Chili Pipers
There has never been anything quite like THE RED HOT CHILLI PIPERS, the past ten years have seen them become the most famous bagpipe band on the planet – ever! Bagpipes with attitude, drums with a Scottish accent and a show so hot it carries its own health warning. The band’s achievements have reached incredible heights with their groundbreaking fusion of traditional Scottish music and Rock/Pop Anthems which they proudly call ‘Bagrock’.

The Chillis have never been more in demand for their infectious style of feel good music which appeals right across the age range to people all over the world. Go to

Tickets start at $31 and can be purchased at the The Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall, located at 8099 College Pkwy, Fort Myers, FL 33919. For more information call 239.489.3033 or head to

Picture 8Best 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. If there is a celebration to have you will see me there. Twisted Vine is located at 2214 Bay St., Fort Myers, right next to the recently opened basin walk. Call them at 239.226.1687 or head to for more information. You will see me there!

10320291_10154734284150565_1054798492140566181_nFair trade downtown Fort Myers
Market Earth supports local artists, fair trade partners and recyclers from around the world. At their store in downtown Fort Myers you will find unique products that support a global marketplace with exceptional standards of quality and creativity. All their goods represent a philosophy of social awareness and they are proud to be a purveyor of change in the way they treat this beautiful earth and all the people, everywhere, who live on it. Check them out at

—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 for more updates!

When in doubt be sure to pick up a Florida Weekly while in town or head to This week learn all about the rise in the use of heroin.