In many areas of the country, the advent of the holiday consumer season — when heads fill with dreams of pantookas, dafflers and wuzzles, tringlers, trappings and fuzzles — starts around Thanksgiving. But in South Florida, we start getting in the buying mood with the annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, an astonishing display of craftsmanship and self-indulgence that again sets checkbooks on fire this weekend.
We don’t mean to hate on FLIBS — it’s a hassle, but it can be a blast, even when you can’t, you know, put a down payment on a dinghy. And it inspires no shortage of quality partying around the city.
For instance, the deck-shoe wearers at Rhythm & Vine Beer Garden in downtown Fort Lauderdale are onboard, hosting a celebratory boat-show closing party on Sunday beginning at 2 p.m., with music from Pirate Stereo and Santiago Caballero. Visit Facebook.com/RhythmAndVineFTL.
Not surprisingly, on the upper end of the scale, Boatyard (among the boat-show dining recommendations by SouthFlorida.com food maven Mike Mayo) will be showing off its massive deck and waterside fire pits all weekend. Pure energy. Visit Boatyard.restaurant.
But, of course, there is counterprogramming.
Opening day at FLIBS on Thursday (Nov. 2) also coincides with the annual Day of the Dead Florida party, with its irreverent downtown parade, which has become another unique, community-defining thing in Fort Lauderdale thanks to the thankless toil of Jim Hammond’s Puppet Network, the Puppet Guild of South Florida and forward-thinking city organizers.
Where the Boat Show is all light, bright, sea-scented, modern corporate indulgence, the Day of the Dead gathering Thursday night wraps itself in urban darkness, a quirky commemoration of a Mexican tradition that is gloriously DIY and free.
While Fort Lauderdale has, justifably, long been associated with the boating lifestyle, waves of young people settling into the city’s downtown core will not be limited by that definition, bringing with them a creative, participatory cultural mindset, on rich display at events such as Day of the Dead.
On Thursday, opening day at the Boat Show at the beach and Day of the Dead festivities downtown will show both out-of-towners and locals two distinctive aspects of an evolving community in Fort Lauderdale. Salt life, with a shot of tequila.
The Day of the Dead Florida’s signature Skeleton Processional — with locals dressed as colorfully painted skulls, Frida Kahlos and luchadores — will gather at 6 p.m. in Huizenga Plaza, across from NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, before the parade begins at 6:30 p.m. (Get there early if you want your child’s face painted by professionals.) As always, the processional will wind along the Riverwalk toward Revolution Live, where a family-friendly block party will ensue. Visit DayOfTheDeadFlorida.com.
SAVE THE ’GLADES
Reminding us that water isn’t just for floating a boat, the 10th annual Everglades Awareness Concert begins at Gramps in Miami on Saturday at 2 p.m., with more than 12 hours of music from a who’s-who of local bands, spoken-word artists and activists uniting to raise awareness about the plight of one of the country’s most vital natural resources. To merely skim the top of the bill, you’ll find performances by Mayday!, Nil Lara, Army Gideon, Aaron Lebos Reality, the Baboons, the Hoy Polloy, Chantil Dukart, the Osceola Brothers, Cleaveland Jones and a reunited Here II Here. Admission to the all-ages event is $10, 12 and younger free. Visit Facebook.com/LoveTheEverglades.
KEYS TO SUCCESS
No secret that Big 105.9 host Paul Castronovo is a big boater and fisherman, so why is he headed in the other direction? The Friday-morning edition of “The Paul Castronovo Show” will be broadcast live from the Marriott Key Largo, joined by Miami Hurricanes and Dolphins great Jimmy Johnson, to help Keys business owners and community leaders spread the word that they are open for business. Perfect timing with so many boaters in South Florida from around the world who might want to book a table, a room or a charter. On Thursday evening (Nov. 2), Castronovo and his crew will be nearby at Jimmy Johnson’s Big Chill to host a 5-7 p.m. happy hour, if you feel like dropping by.Visit Facebook.com/PaulCastronovoShow.
Day of the Dead is, for some, a halfway-to-Cinco-de-Mayo party, requiring proper libations. Due South Brewing in Boynton Beach will celebrate on Nov. 2 with cans of Mexican Standoff, a porter with chocolate, cinnamon, vanilla and habanero peppers (this is just the second time it’s been available in cans). The beer, also available on tap, will be the centerpiece of a 5 p.m. Thursday gathering at the brewery, with Chefo Di Big Jerk providing food-truck noshing. Visit Facebook.com/DueSouthBrewing.
WEEKEND BEER II
Nearby, NoBo Brewing’s Experimental Fridays theme will include Trick or Treat Imperial Stout, which is 1 10-percent imperial stout blended with melted Twix, Snickers, Milky Way and 3 Muskateers bars. I kid you not. They’ll start pouring at the Boynton Beach brewery at 3 p.m. Visit Facebook.com/NoBoBrewing.
LET THE GAMES BEGIN
Instead of yachts, how about hops? The inaugural Fort Lauderdale Craft Beer Sporting Games and Food Fest comes to the MASS District in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, when you can watch teams from local craft breweries and businesses compete in a variety of beer-spilling events. Oh, the humanity. This pet-friendly, kid-friendly gathering will include live music, food trucks and a VIP Craft Beer Village. General-admission entry is free, beginning at 1 p.m. Visit Facebook.com/MASSDistrict.
The TBS show “The Last OG,” which was supposed to bring Tracy Morgan and Cedric the Entertainer to prime-time TV last month has been pushed back to 2018, according to Variety. Too bad for them, but it works out fine for us: Morgan brings his standup tour to Hard Rock Live 8 p.m. Saturday, with tickets starting at $40 (MyHRL.com), while Cedric is at the Palm Beach Improv Friday and Saturday, with tickets $42.50 and two drinks (PalmBeachImprov.com).
A NIGHT OF NI!
Watching one of the funniest films ever made, “Monty Python and the Holy Grail,” at the Broward Center? $50. To be able to watch it with the Black Knight himself, John Cleese, and ask him how he treated those flesh wounds? Priceless. Cleese will lead a post-film discussion as part of the extended 40th anniversary tour of “Holy Grail,” which screens at the Broward Center at 8 p.m. Friday. Tickets start at $50. Visit BrowardCenter.org.
A NEW CORNELL
The Cornell Art Museum on Old School Square in Delray Beach will show off its million-dollar remodel with a grand-opening party 7-9 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8. Among the new works on display will be Leah Brown and Peter Symon's “Human Kaleidescope II” on the second floor, an interactive, mirrored arrangement. You’ll want to put your drink down for that one. And it wouldn’t kill you to put on a nice shirt. Admission is $10 for nonmembers. Visit Facebook.com/OldSchoolSquareCornellArtMuseum.
YOU REALLY GOT ME
The art-minded Flagler Villager Magazine will have its launch party beginning at 5 p.m. Friday at the Brass Tap, with drinks from the premium craft rummies at Oak & Cane and live painting. Any magazine whose logo looks like a Van Halen symbol is worth your attention and good will. Visit FlaglerVillageGroup.com.
Fort Lauderdale DJ Adam Foster, a South Florida influencer since he helped set the tone on Las Olas Boulevard when it gussied up with Yolo and Vibe Ultra Lounge awhile back, recently had a new track, “Anyway,” played by EDM god Tiesto on his Club Life Radio show. Hear for yourself when Foster plays the Art Walk afterparty at Mana Wynwood on Nov. 11. Visit AdamFosterMusic.com.
In case you missed it, working out of the company’s roastery in Delray Beach, Brooklyn Water Bagel roastmaster Christopher Conover has perfected a new iced-coffee flavor called CinaBuzz, a cinnamon-infused roast jacked with 50 percent more caffeine. And, of course, the drink, called Cubsta, is served over BWB’s signature frozen-coffee ice cubes. Because that’s what you need more of in your life. Visit Facebook.com/BrooklynWaterBagelBWB.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
It wasn’t quite Halloween when we received our first formal New Year’s Eve party notice: the Village People, with original People person Victor Willis, at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek. General-admission floor tickets for the 11 p.m. show cost $95 and are on sale via Ticketmaster. Visit SeminoleCoconutCreekCasino.com.
The Parrot Lounge on Fort Lauderdale beach will host a dog-friendly happy hour at 7 p.m. Friday to raise money for Canine Companions for Independence, which supplies free, highly trained service dogs to adults, children and veterans with disabilities. Admission is $20 and includes a free buffet and one drink. Visit Facebook.com/SouthFLChapter.
OTHER VOICES, OTHER ROOMS
The State Of again joins the Mad Cat Live! band to perform the epic Black Sabbath “Vol. 4” album 9 p.m. Thursday (Nov. 2) at Churchill's Pub in Miami. Double Barrel Justice and Steel Cloak will also grind out some Sabbath for you (Facebook.com/MadCatTheatre) … The Takers and Leavers, Xotic Yeyo and the Oski Foundation are among a long lineup of bands playing the second annual Fort Lauderdale New Music Festival at Two& on Las Olas Boulevard 9 p.m. Friday (Facebook.com/TwoAndWhatever) … Kids, Alex Di Leo , Wilder Sons and Viniloversus take over Respectable Street in West Palm Beach 9 p.m.-midnight Friday (Facebook.com/RespectableStreet) … The free Fort Lauderdale beach music series Friday Night Sound Waves steps it up with the Heavy Pets 6 p.m. Friday (FridayNightSoundWaves.com) … Crazy Fingers plays Dead at the Tie-Dye a T-shirt party at LauderAle 8 p.m. Saturday (Facebook.com/LauderAle) … Electric Kif and Groove Orient play the Funky Biscuit in Boca Raton 8 p.m. Thursday (Facebook.com/ElectricKif) …