Things We Loved In March

Legends train in Delray…former Delray Open Champ and Delray resident Kevin Anderson and Hall of Famer Martina Navratilova.

 

Things we loved in March
We schlepped all the way to the Miramar Cultural Center to catch a lecture by two-time White House photographer Pete Souza and he was worth the trip.
Mr. Souza served as President Reagan’s photographer and then did an 8 year stint in the Obama White House.
His photography is magnificent. Of course there are the iconic shots—the President and his national security team watching Seal Team Six take out Osama Bin Laden, a five year old African American boy touching the President’s head and marveling that his hair is the same etc. etc.
But it was the behind the scenes shots of family, staff and life as POTUS that truly captivated.
Souza has released a few books and has a large following on Instagram if you want to check out his work.
The Miramar Cultural Center is pretty special too.

In Praise of LF
Leadership Florida is an organization that is close to my heart.
I’m a graduate of Class XXIV and I’ve tried to stay involved by attending annual meetings and serving on a few committees. The organization is dedicated to training, convening and educating leaders in politics, academia, business and non-profits. I think the best legacy of the organization is that it helps instill a love of Florida into those who participate. We may love our cities, we may love our regions but Leadership Florida helps us appreciate the wonders of our state.
For decades, Wendy Walker was the organization’s leader and guiding light. She retired about two years ago and has remained in touch with the organization.
Last month, Diane and I and fellow LF grad Jon Levinson had a chance to meet Wendy and her family for lunch at the marvelous River House in Palm Beach Gardens.
It was a great afternoon of catching up, talking about the state of our state and learning where other graduates have landed.
If you value leadership, I urge you to check out the organization and apply for one it’s programs. It will change your life.

Discover the Theatre Lab

We attended a play at the FAU Theatre Lab for the first time in March.
“To Fall In Love” by Jennifer Lane (remember that name she’s a wonderful talent) was given a reading by Theatre Lab Artistic Director Matt Stabile and the talented local actress Niki Fridh.
The play was directed by Louis Tyrell, a name that should be familiar to local theater goers.
The experience was electric.
And we highly recommend that you visit this small little gem of a theater on the FAU campus.
In fact, the Lab will present another  Jennifer Lane play “Harlowe” through April 14. Call 561-297-6124 or visit https://nam03.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=www.fauevents.com&data=02%7C01%7C%7C0e30c440221440d3afe308d6b2e205d8%7C84df9e7fe9f640afb435aaaaaaaaaaaa%7C1%7C0%7C636893081156480236&sdata=m6rM1LHn3wc8rSXhEO0F5f6YmroVDN1%2BFB9mZwAHaDU%3D&reserved=0 for more information.
After the play, Tyrell and the two person cast answered questions about the performance. It was an intimate and engaging experience and we were amazed at how two talented actors with no props other than a music stand could turn a reading into a transformative and emotional experience.
The Theatre Lab is a gem.

Good Books
We have a few books to recommend this month.
“Blitzscaling” by Linked In founder Reid Hoffman is a good read and helpful if you want to build a company that will conquer the world or at least its market.
Really enjoyed “Return on Courage” by Ryan Berman which talks about the benefits of being courageous in business and in life. Dare to try, dare to be different and take some chances. Simple advice but oh so hard in entrenched organizations.  But those people and organizations that do find the courage reap outsized rewards and change the world.

Celsius + Creative Mornings
Close readers of this space know I’m a huge fan of Creative Mornings Palm Beach.
And knowing their caffeinated audience I thought our beverage company Celsius would be a good fit.
So I replaced my personal sponsorship of the group with a Celsius sponsorship and I’m pleased to report that Creative Mornings and Celsius have hit it off! So check out an upcoming Creative Morning and make sure you sample Celsius, a local company that’s doing some great things.

The Gazebo rocks & Senor Burrito is also great

Chicken Chablis, French bread and two good friends dining at the bar/counter at Boca’s sublime Kathy’s Gazebo. My friend had liver…he said it was good. I’ll have to take his word for it.

There are few things in life better than sitting at the bar at Senor Burrito with a margarita, chips and a plate of carne asada. Trust us on this. Seriously.

Welcome iPic Delray

The red carpet gala at the new iPic Delray was one of the best parties ever. Truly.
This project is another level. The art work, the design, the comfort of the pods, the finishes.
CEO Hamid Hashemi and his team deserve kudos for their  perseverance in the wake of toxic opposition. iPic’s  execution and vision is something to see.  The project is a wow.

New Digs for Stuart & Shelby

Congratulations to Chuck Halberg and the team at Stuart and Shelby on the grand opening celebration  of their new headquarters on 4th Avenue in Delray.
The office looks great and a big crowd turned out for a genuine good guy who does so much for the community.
We wish them many more years of continued success.

Days of Wine & Seafood

It was great to see the Delray Wine and Seafood Festival return to Old School Square.
Great seminars, awesome food and the “wine down” garden was brilliant.

 A terrific job by producers Festival Management Group. Nancy, Bern, John and Lindi are something special. If you missed it this year, make sure you mark your calendars for next year. And don’t miss the pairing seminars. We attended a Cabernet seminar featuring Napa Valley wines such as Frog’s Leap, Spring Valley and Rutherford. Paired with great food courtesy of Caffe Luna Rosa’s terrific chef Ernie DeBlasi . It was a memorable experience. P.S. Caffe Luna Rosa has magnificent crab cakes and lobster rolls.

Only in Delray

Sharp eyed tennis fans got a major treat in March when they stumbled on Delray’s Kevin Anderson training with legend Martina Navratilova at the Delray Tennis Center.
The former Delray Open champ hails from South Africa but fell in love with Delray after playing here. He soon bought a home and even adopted a rescue dog at the CRA Green Market. Pretty cool.
Martina was in town and the two had a chance hit a few balls and chat about the tennis life.

Speaking of tennis, Delray sensation Coco Gauff earned a wild card to play in the prestigious Miami Open. Quite a coup for the 15 year old junior champ as the Miami Open is considered one of the world’s top tournaments—a step below a Grand Slam. Coco won her first WTA tour match beating fellow wildcard Catherine McNally 3-6, 6-3, 6-4. On a related note, she was also featured in Forbes magazine in March.

A New Venu
We checked out West Boynton’s Venu last month, a live music venue, restaurant and bar in The Canyon Center.
The food was delicious, the happy hour menu was inexpensive and tasty and the acts range from tribute bands to national acts such as Los Lobos and the Marshall Tucker Band. Rascals legend Felix Cavaliere played there in March. Really interesting place. We were there the same night they had a sell out for a Queen tribute band.

Burgers and Wine and Cars

Highly recommend Zimburger, a burger and wine bar in the Town Center Mall.
The veggie burger is outstanding and so are the truffle fries, which may cancel out the veggie burger.

Imagine our surprise when we stumbled into an appearance by rock hall of famer and Cars frontman Ric Ocasek at the mall’s Wentworth Gallery.
It turns out Mr. Ocasek is also a fine artist and the gallery was featuring his paintings.
I’d say seeing his art work was “just what I needed” but that would be too obvious.

Making Deals and Bringing Jobs to Town
I had a chance to speak to the South Florida Office Brokers Association at their monthly meeting hosted at Delray Central,  a recently renovated office building owned by Grover Corlew, a local real estate firm.
For me, it was a chance to talk about the redevelopment of the Office Depot headquarters across the street and to meet the pro’s who bring the tenants to projects.
It was an impressive group.
I was also very impressed with the renovations done to the newly branded Delray Central office building which looks great.
It’s really good to see investment happening along the Congress Avenue corridor.

A Fond Farewell to a Great Chief

Congratulations to Police Chief Jeff Goldman on his retirement and his new gig in corporate security.
Chief Goldman and I go way way back. He was a young officer on Delray’s tactical team working street level drugs and crime when I was young reporter in Delray back in the 80s, when parts of Delray resembled an open air drug market.
I was able to observe the Police Department’s stellar work on frequent ride alongs at all hours of the night. I got to know Jeff and we’ve been friends ever since.
It was gratifying to see him rise through the ranks and make a difference along the way.
Being chief is a very hard job but Jeff kept his head about him through the opioid crisis, weird politics, spasms of violence in the community and changing players at City Hall, including a slew of city managers.
I will miss him and wish him well in his next chapter.

Inspired Choices
Congratulations to Amanda Perna and Jamael Stewart on been named the new hosts of Delray Morning Live. The duo will replace the show’s founders Ryan Boylston and Kate Volman who have become Wednesday morning staples on Facebook with their live stream featuring a host of local luminaries.
It isn’t easy to do a weekly live show but Ryan and Kate have done an amazing job.
I had a chance to catch up with Kate after a recent show at Capital One Cafe and she’s doing great things in the leadership field as a new CEO of a consulting company. We all know Ryan is super busy as a city commissioner and entrepreneur.
Amanda is a talented entrepreneur herself and Jamael is a rising star as our assistant director of community improvement.
Good to see the Chamber of Commerce involved as the show enters a new era. Tune in Wednesday’s on Facebook.

Making an Impact
Kudos to Lynn University’s new Social Impact Lab on it’s fabulous “Business for Good” conference. Top notch speakers on topics including venture philanthropy, impact investing and fair trade attracted a large crowd. Terrific launch for the new lab which is amazing. (See a future blog for more info).

Long Table, Great Night
Savor the Avenue did it again.
A great night eating at large tables spanning Atlantic Avenue highlights Delray’s terrific restaurants.
We sat with new residents and visitors from London who marveled at our town.
Kudos to Delray Magazine, the DDA and all of the participating restaurants. We were at The Office’s table and it was great.

What a month. See you in April.

Weekend Best Bets: A Girls Night Out, Wine & Seafood, Zumba And More

Perfect for a Girls Night Out

Perfect for a Girls Night Out

The weekend starts early in Boca/Delray. So take a deep breath, there’s a ton of stuff to do starting tonight.

A Great Girls Night Out

Did you like the book “50 Shades of Grey?” We didn’t read it, but we hear it’s something else.

On Nov. 7 and 8, the Crest Theatre at the Delray Center for the Arts at Old School Square will present a spoof on the cultural phenomenon entitled “Cuff Me.”

Tickets are $40 and show time is 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday Night.

“CUFF ME” is the unauthorized, hilarious parody of the Fifty Shades of Grey bestseller. This highly entertaining performance dives into a sexually charged romance in true satirical fashion. Get ready to laugh at this sexy, hysterical romp.

CUFF ME features a score of pop hits (with altered lyrics) performed by a cast of four.  The show jumps back and forth between two women reading the series with scenes of actual events from the novel…with a parody twist, of course.

Don’t expect to see a literal translation of Fifty Shades on the stage — this show is all about sending up the phenomenon with over-the-top performances, wild comedy and a slew of musical numbers that turn pop music on its head.

We await your reviews.

Kenny Mikey and Riley Roam entertain and educate

Kenny Mikey and Riley Roam entertain and educate

For the Kids

If Cuff Me is for the adults, then we suggest this for the kids.

“Steam Trunk Circus” featuring our good friends Riley Roam and Kenny Mikey is set for Saturday, Nov. 9 at 2 p.m. also at the Crest Theatre.

The talented duo will perform an educational show that explores the themes of “STEAM”, which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math.

The show is free and seating is on a first come, first served basis.

Trust us on this one, Page Turner Adventures never disappoints.

Get your tickets

Wine and Seafood Festival Highlights Weekend

Wine and seafood lovers will have two days to enjoy their favorite pairings during the 2nd Annual Delray Beach Wine and Seafood Festival, Nov. 9-10.

The festival will be held on the east end of Atlantic Avenue from the Intracoastal Waterway to A1A.

Tickets are $30 and can be purchased at http://www.dbwineandseafood.com/

Highlights include dozens of vendors, seminars, special pairings and two stages featuring musicians.

The festival, run by the Delray Chamber, runs from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.

 

Friday Zumba Gold

Zumba is sweeping the nation and it’s popular in Delray Beach too.

On Friday, Nov. 8 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. you can take a Zumba class at picturesque Veterans Park, on Atlantic Avenue at the Intracoastal Waterway.

Zumba combines music and dance and is a great way to shape up for the weekend.

Cost is $5 per class for Delray residents, $6 for non-residents.  Call 561-243-7350 for more information.

Hope Bash Boca

You read about it first right here on www.yourdelrayboca.com

But now the event is here and it should be on your weekend calendar.

Hope Bash Boca with the theme “Jewels and Jeans”  is Friday, Nov. 8 at 6:30 p.m. at the Boca Resort and Club.

The event is the inaugural fundraiser for Place of Hope at The Haven Campus.

Cost is $250 which benefits a great cause.

Visit www.hopeatthehaven.org for more information.

The Resolvers Free Friday Night Concert

The Resolvers Free Friday Night Concert

Friday Concert Series: The Resolvers

The Delray Center for the Arts at Old School Square continues its hugely popular free concert series Friday night at 7:30 p.m. with The Resolvers.

Voted the “Best Reggae Band” in these parts by the readers of “New Times”, The Resolvers draws influences from classic Jamaican Reggae, Rocksteady, and Ska along with American Rock, Jazz, Funk, and Soul. Their live show has been described as explosive with up to 10 musicians on stage, 5 singers, a full horn section, and a powerful brother & sister on lead vocals.

Rain or shine; bring your blankets and chairs, and bring the family… but PLEASE, no pets or outside food or beverages.  Food trucks and cash bar available.

Saturdays at Sanborn

There’s no better way to kick off your Saturday than with yoga.

Every Saturday, you can take an invigorating yoga class at Sanborn Square, 72 N. Federal Highway, in downtown Boca Raton.

Registration is at 8:45 a.m. Class begins at 9 a.m. For more information visit www.downtownboca.org or call 561-393-7703. Classes are free.

Support the Boca Ballet

Support the Boca Ballet

A Princely Affair

Sunday, Nov. 10 is the date for “A Princely Affair” a luncheon/fundraiser benefitting the Boca Ballet Theatre.

The event kicks off at noon at the Boca Resort and Club. Cost is $45-$90. Visit www.bocaballet.org for more information.

Vitali Imereli violinist extraordinaire

Vitali Imereli violinist extraordinaire

 

Jazz at The Arts Garage

Saturday night is a big night at Delray’s Arts Garage with a performance by violinist Vitali Imereli.

The show is 8 p.m. For ticket info visit www.artsgarage.org

Imereli’s playing  is a true joy to experience.  He is a virtuoso in both classical and jazz genres and has performed at concert halls and festivals throughout Europe such as the Pori Jazz Festival in Finland and the North Sea Jazz Festival in The Netherlands.  Vitali  has performed with and gained the admiration of jazz greats such as Bucky Pizzarelli, Benny Golson and Larry Coryell.

A former Soviet Union expatriate, now living in Finland, Vitali’s talent was recognized at the young age of 5.  His early influences include the great Stephane Grappelli and the classical masters.  His playing is renowned for its energetic and lyrical style, beautiful phrasing, blistering technique, and his impeccable delivery.  “Europe’s #1 Jazz Violinist” begins his American tour here at the Arts Garage. Don’t miss it.