The event started with a bang. Registration for this event was seamless, you could just simply show up and pay $10 and participate in the feast. Elmer’s Sports Café greeted guest with spicy homemade gumbo packed with spicy sausage and shrimp with rice in a rich, flattering deep roux. Paula Wood who has been running Elmer’s for the last 20 years and creating tasting homemade treasure for the last 6 years was warm and inviting.
Putting together a list of all the festivals, parties and other hoo-ha happening around Halloween is more shudder-inducing than a frozen slack-jawed Jack Nicholson in The Shining. Luckily with the help of CL interns Amina Jackson, Marc Seide and Kyetra Bryant — and local organizations who obliged us with information — we have been able to come up with this fairly comprehensive guide — truly something for everybody. (Insert creepy laugh here.) Items in chronological order, under the categories Arts, Music and Culture; Big Nights Out; Boooooze and More, Comedy & Cabaret, Family Fun; Festivals, Haunted Haunts. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you have an event to add — but do so at your own risk!
The rise of the craft cocktail has been no accident; bartenders across the country (and world) have worked to build a new liquid consciousness, drink by drink. Hey Bartender, a new documentary, gets up close and personal with some of the best bartenders. Tampa Theatre will host a one-night-only screening of the film on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. I recently had the opportunity to speak with the film's director, Douglas Tirola, about why bartending, like art, has its own cultural movements.
"I was about 15 and got a job as a dishwasher at a restaurant/nightlife bar," Tirola said. "It turned into the town's big nightlife spot, all New York-style with velvet ropes and a huge bar. One night, the barback doesn't show up and I'm the barback."
Then one night the bartender didn't show up and Tirola took over.
"I was making sea breezes and Long Island Iced Teas then," he said. "The bartender is the official mayor for communities. There's a special relationship between regulars and bartenders and I always noticed that."
Today, Tirola makes documentary films at 4th Row Films in New York. But the bartending scene always fascinated him and the idea for a documentary about corner bars stuck in his head — but it still wasn't the exact story he wanted tell. Then, while staying at the Roosevelt Hotel in Los Angeles, the drinks made at the library bar caught his eye.
"This bartender was doing a lot with cocktails, fruits and vegetables," Tirola said. "He was going to the Santa Monica farmers market, a renown farmers market, for all these ingredients."
Back home in New York, Tirola discovered the Spring Lounge, then Employees Only — both New York bars taking risks with spirits.
Wednesday morning, a standing room only crowd packed into St. Petersburg's Studio@620 to hear from the city council and mayoral candidates on the subject of art. The debate focused on the candidates vision, perception and funding plans for the arts in St. Pete.
Some of St. Petersburg's longtime unofficial artists in residence were in attendance, including photographer Herb Snitzer, Pale Horse Gallery artist and owner Chris Parks, and half of Spathose's industrial art team George Medeiros. Everyone there was hoping for answers to pressing questions as the city potentially welcomes a slew of new elected officials.
"Each city has its own DNA," said Roy Binger, who sits on the Museum of Fine Arts and Palladium's board of trustees. "We've got Central Ave., Beach Drive, Fourth St., and Tyrone. Each has its own target. We need to bring this mosaic of art together in a seamless way."
Mayoral and city council candidates had their work cut out for them. None are as notoriously supportive to St. Petersburg's burgeoning art scene as exiting city councilwoman Leslie Curran (who was in attendance), who's credited as one of the movers and shakers behind the city's 600 Block arts revival.
St. Petersburg City Theatre Executive Director Deborah Kelley moderated, leading off with "we are going to ask you who you are, who we are (the art community), how you view us, and how you will support the arts community."
This season marks the 10 year anniversary of Tampa Bay’s first and only Stanley Cup. Be the thunder at the Lightning Fan Fest on Sat., Sept. 14, and help bring the cup back to Tampa!