by The Editors | November 26, 2018

The Tide: Road-Trip-Worthy Events Around the State

Debuts to Peruse

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North


Photography Venardos Circus

THE VENARDOS CIRCUS

The St. Augustine Amphitheatre
Dec. 19–jan. 27

When Kevin Venardos started his own circus back in 2014, he had a six-person team functioning out of a small truck and a rented tent, a stark difference from his days as ringmaster at Ringling Bros. But Venardos wanted to be his own boss. Since the circus’s inception, the crew has nearly doubled, and the Venardos Circus has become a storehouse for old-fashioned magic and the glitz and glamour a trip to the circus used to hold. “A big part of my circus dream is to create annual traditions in the cities we visit,” Venardos told Flamingo. “St. Augustine is the crown jewel of our national tour, and our partnership with the St. Augustine Amphitheatre has made that dream a reality,” he added. Often deemed “the little circus that could,” the group will unfold an intimate showcase of acrobats, aerialists, comedians and dancers when it stops in St. Augustine. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early for an interactive, photo-friendly pre-show party. “We are looking forward to being part of the life of this community every holiday season for many years to come,” Venardos says. Tickets range from $15 to $45 in advance. venardoscircus.com 


Photography by Deremer Studios

DICKENS ON CENTRE

Amelia Island
Dec. 7–9

Travel back in time to this Victorian Christmas street festival featuring historically accurate entertainment, costumed characters from the beloved novel A Christmas Carol and a visit from St. Nick. ameliaisland.com


ICHE NIPPY DIP DAY

Fort White
Jan. 5

Thrill-seekers can take a plunge into some of Florida’s coldest spring water at Ichetucknee Springs State Park. Campfires, hot coffee and s’mores immediately follow to aid in the frosty recovery. oursantaferiver.org


BUTTS & CLUCKS COOK-OFF ON THE BAY

Apalachicola
Jan. 25–26

This competitive cookoff features award-winning BBQ and deviled eggs from all over the Sunshine State. Winners advance to the Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational. apalachicolabay.org


FLORIDA FORUM SPEAKER SERIES

Jacksonville
Jan. 28

Actor Bryan Cranston, best known for his role as Walter White on Breaking Bad, will offer his take on current cultural issues in a talk presented by The Women’s Board of Wolfson’s Hospital. thefloridaforum.com


Photography by 904Fitness

DONNA MARATHON WEEKEND

Neptune Beach
Feb. 8–10

As part of its mission to end breast cancer, the Donna Foundation hosts this Boston Marathon qualifying event, which includes a 5K, half-marathon, marathon and ultramarathon. breastcancermarathon.com


Photography by George Wilson

OLUSTEE BATTLE FESTIVAL

Lake City
Feb. 15–17

Relive Florida’s largest Civil War battle Gone With the Wind–style with a memorial service, vivid re-enactment, parade and pageant. olusteefestival.com


SANDESTIN GUMBO FESTIVAL

Sandestin
Feb. 15–16

Celebrity judges travel to the Gulf Coast to award the winner of winter’s tastiest seafood gumbo. Dine and dance to the sound of live music from Dikki Du and the Zydeco Krewe. sandestingumbofestival.com


STEINHATCHEE FIDDLER CRAB FESTIVAL

Steinhatchee
Feb. 15–17

Wander through the boat and car shows picking off a plate piled high with crab dishes and jam out to coastal tunes performed by local musicians. steinhatcheechamber.com


MARDI GRAS DOG PARADE

Sandestin
March 3

Celebrate Mardi Gras at the Baytowne Warf watching party pooches parade the streets in true Cajun fashion. Beads and jazz provided. sandestin.com


Central


Photography Daytona International Speedway

ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA SPEEDWAY

Daytona International Speedway
Jan. 26–27

About 60 cars, from Lamborghinis and Porsches to Corvettes and Mazdas, will hit the road for 24 hours straight during the annual Rolex 24 competition. The endurance race, now more than 50 years old, challenges teams of three to five drivers from all over the world to an entire day’s worth of racing. In total, cars will each drive over 2,000 miles. The race originally went by the name “24 Hours of DAYTONA,” but with the Rolex title comes a fancy new prize for winning drivers—a Rolex Cosmograph Daytona watch, which starts at $12,400 in retail. “It’s a race with a rich history, and the 2019 edition will be a special one as IMSA kicks off its 50th anniversary celebration,” Chip Wile, president of the Speedway, told Flamingo. “Legendary racing names who have competed in the Rolex 24 include Mario Andretti, A.J. Foyt, Al Unser, Al Unser Jr., Dale Earnhardt, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon and most recently Fernando Alonso.” Tickets range from $45 to $110 for both days. daytonainternationalspeedway.com


LAKERIDGE WINERY WINEFEST

Clermont
Dec. 7–9

Observe displays of local art while sipping fine wine and savoring chocolate pairings. Dance the night away to the sound of live bands on the outdoor stage. lakeridgewinery.com 


WILD, WONDERFUL WITHLACOOCHEE

Lake Panasoffkee
Jan. 17–22

Paddle through six days of open waters, camping and camaraderie on this kayaking expedition from the Withlacoochee River all the way to the Gulf. paddleflorida.org


RENNINGER’S ANTIQUE EXTRAVAGANZA

Mount Dora
Jan. 18–20

Go treasure hunting through acreage expanding as far as the eye can see for worldly antiques and collectables. renningers.net


MANATEE FESTIVAL

Crystal River
Jan. 19–20

Marvel at large quantities of manatees wintering in the tepid waters of Three Sisters Springs, take a boat tour of the bay, then shop the streets lined with local vendors. gomanateefest.com


Roseate Spoonbill in flight; Photography by Jim Boland

SPACE COAST BIRDING & WILDLIFE FESTIVAL

Titusville
Jan. 23–28

Learn from experts such as Pulitzer Prize finalist Scott Weidensaul and many others who have made great strides in the field of birding and peruse the marketplace for birding gifts. spacecoastbirdingandwildlifefestival.org


KUMQUAT FESTIVAL

Dade City
Jan. 26

Antique cars and trucks line the streets as you take in the historic downtown atmosphere while enjoying savory and sweet kumquat-based dishes and desserts along with more than 400 vendors. dadecitychamber.org


Photography Wendi Torres/Rising Sun Photography

BROOKSVILLE NATIVE AMERICAN FESTIVAL

Brooksville
Feb. 2–3

Reflect on history and honor heritage as you watch colorful performances of traditional Native American song and dance and many more traditions. brooksvillenativeamericanfest.com


DELAND CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL

Deland
Feb. 9

Sip the ultimate flight with more than 300 artfully crafted brews and 75 breweries to choose from at this outdoor hops menagerie, spread out across historic downtown Deland. mainstreetdeland.org


DAYTONA SPEEDWEEKS

Daytona
Feb. 10–17

The marquee event kicks off with a new beer festival for fans and ends with the iconic champagne shower for the winner of NASCAR’s famed Daytona 500 race. daytonainternationalspeedway.com


Photography Florida Strawberry Festival

FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL

Plant City
Feb. 28–March 10

This 11-day celebration marks the success of the annual strawberry harvest with big-name country music acts and a decadent spread of strawberry dishes. flstrawberryfestival.com 


South


Guy Fieri and Snoop Dogg cook on stage at Goya Foods’ Grand Tasting Village. Photography by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for SOBEWFF

SOUTH BEACH FOOD AND WINE FESTIVAL

Miami Beach; multiple venues
FEB. 20–24 

Miami’s world-renowned food and wine festival will return for its 18th year in February. Attendees can expect showcases from today’s up-and-coming chefs. The five-day fete attracts chefs from all over the world to South Beach, where they’ll perform cooking demos, host tastings and more. This year, the list of talent is long, with more than 200 chefs, personalities and restauranteurs slated to present. Standouts include Food Network’s Bobby Flay, Alex Guarnaschelli, Katie Lee and more. “With a variety of new offerings and the return of the specially curated CRAVE Greater Fort Lauderdale Series, the 18th annual edition of the festival is our most robust event and talent line-up yet,” says festival founder and Senior Vice President for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits Lee Brian Schrager. New experiences include a sunset stone crab session hosted by Emeril Lagasse and a wine and cheese happy hour hosted by Martha Stewart. Be sure to try at least one hands-on master class and, of course, a late-night party, like beachside barbecue with Guy Fieri, pictured above in 2018 with Snoop Dogg. Event tickets start at $30. sobewff.org


Louis Vuitton’s Objetes Nomades collection at Design Miami 2017. Photography by James Harris

MIAMI ART WEEK

Miami
Dec. 4–9

The weeklong celebration of international and regional art is anchored by its signature show Art Basel Miami and elevated by a plethora of independent fairs, exhibits and parties spread out across the Magic City. Miami Masters: A Guide to Miami Art Week and Art Basel


Photography by Joana Madruga

L’ILLUSION DU PLUMAGE

Fort Lauderdale
Dec. 8–9

The word “costume” belies the true artistry on display in the feathery ensembles and headdresses designed by Jarbas Pereira for this showgirl performance. There’s a twist—it’s actually showboys. lillusionduplumage.com


PALM BEACH FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL

Palm Beach
Dec. 13–16

Some of the island’s best chefs, including Clay Conley of Buccan, put forth their most impressive creations for discerning palates looking for more laid-back elegance. pbfoodwinefest.com


FOR THE LOVE OF ORCHIDS

Sarasota
Jan. 5–6

Botanical enthusiasts shop the finest orchid species and hybrids, while top growers vie for prizes and bragging rights. sarasotaorchidsociety.org


Guests at Palm Beach Modern + Contemporary VIP Opening Preview. Photography by Dylan Rives/Getty Images for Art Miami

PALM BEACH MODERN + CONTEMPORARY 

West Palm Beach
Jan. 10–13

Top art collectors and connoisseurs from around the world descend on the art fair, started two years ago by Art Miami director Nick Korniloff. artpbfair.com


ART DECO WEEKEND

Miami Beach
Jan. 18–20

An homage to South Beach’s iconic architecture and culture with events ranging from a retro fashion show to musical performances to films. artdecoweekend.com


Photography by Jeremy Ball

KEY WEST FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL

Key West
Jan. 23–27

Fresh local seafood purveyors and winemakers from all over convene for the island’s culinary experience of the year. keywestfoodandwinefestival.com


PEGASUS WORLD CUP

Hallandale Beach
Jan. 26

Glitz, glamour and gambling encompass this international horse racing event with a total purse of $16 million. pegasusworldcup.com


FLORIDA JAZZ AND BLUES JAM

Boca Raton
Jan. 26

Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, led by drummer and founding member of the Allman Brothers Jai “Jaimoe” Johanny Johanson, headlines the festival. musicjamproductions.com


SOUTH FLORIDA GARLIC FEST

Lake Worth
Feb. 9–10

Garlic lovers celebrate the flavor of their favorite bulb, which takes on new and exciting gastro-combos in everything from garlic ice cream to garlic fries. dbgarlicfest.com


Ultra luxurious mega yachts line the docks at the Miami Yacht show; Photography by Informa

MIAMI INTERNATIONAL BOAT SHOW AND MIAMI YACHT SHOW

Miami
Feb. 14–18

These shows offer a preview of the latest innovations, finishings and accessories in fishing, cruising and luxury vessels. Serious shoppers and leisurely lookers enjoy first-class cuisine and live music. miamiboatshow.com and miamiyachtshow.com