Friday, February 22, 2013

Orlando Weekend Events Preview: February 22nd - 24th, 2013

For this post I want to try something a little different:  I'll still highlight some great events happening in Central Florida this weekend, but I also want to introduce readers to some different parts of town they may not have been to.  This weekend, let's take a look at some of Orlando's neighborhood bars.

Explore Orlando's Non-Orange-Ave Bar Scene

Orlando has one of the best downtown bar scenes in Florida.  However, what most visitors (and residents!) don't realize is that you can also find awesome bars outside the city's core.  Three neighborhood bar strips (not strip bars) getting a lot of attention are Mills50, the Milk District, and Audubon Park.  To help get your exploring started, here are some of my favorite spots:


Stop by both relative newcomer Lil' Indies (1036 N Mills Ave), next to mainstay Will's Pub (1042 N Mills Ave) this weekend for a variety of concerts and a great selection of beers.  Also not to be missed is one of Orlando's original dive bars, Wally's, located across the street (1001 N Mills Ave).  Just a few blocks north, you'll find BART - a bar, an arcade, and an art gallery (1205 N Mills Ave).  This cozy bar features an always-changing assortment of craft beers and wine, vintage arcade games (most of them free), and local artists' works.

The Milk District

I'm not one to sit around while drinking, which makes Sportstown Billiards (2414 E Robinson St) one of my favorite places to grab a beer.  Come for the drinks and snacks (like like tater tots or Funday Sunday $2 beers) and stay for the cue sports, ping-pong, darts, etc.  For variety, visit one of the various close-by bars and restaurants.  If you're looking for more activity, consider walking over to Colonial Lanes for Friday nights all-you-can-bowl from 10:00pm to 1:00am and different specials throughout the week.

Audubon Park

There are a lot of things to do in the Audubon Park Garden District.  Whether you visit anchors like Stardust Video & Coffee (1842 E Winter Park Rd) to hold a meeting for your eco-startup, Big Daddy's Roadhouse (3001 Corrine Dr) for some karaoke, or the recently relocated RedLight RedLight (2810 Corrine Dr) for one of about a million types of beer, there's always something going on.

There are so many different bars in and around Orlando, each with its very own personality.  What's one of your favorite bars or bar districts?

Other Events

A reminder for the frugal art lover: Winter Park's Morse Museum hosts Friday Night Open House tonight from 4:00pm to 8:00pm, giving you free access to the recently expanded museum and its rotating exhibits.

Come to Lake Eola Park for this year's Downtown Food & Wine Fest, happening Saturday from noon to 9:00pm and Sunday from noon to 7:00pm.  General admission tickets are $12.20 advanced purchase or $15 at the gate and includes live music and access to over 100 different menu items, 14 wine stations, a cocktail lounge, and a sports bar.

This Friday and Saturday is the 18th Annual Valencia Film Celebration, a film festival by Valencia College students.  Tickets are $7 for general admission and free for Valencia student/faculty.

Two events happening in Avalon Park this weekend are the Doglympics USA, Saturday from 9:00am, and tonight's Movie Under the Stars, showing The Pirates Band of Misfits at 7:00pm.

Also going on this weekend is the Lake Mary Craft Festival, hosted this Saturday starting at 2:00pm at World of Beer Lake Mary.  Tickets are $25 and include unlimited beer samples.

What do libraries and hip hop have in common?  I don't know.  But this weekend, you can see kids compete in a step team battle Step Off 2013 at the Orlando Public Library downtown Saturday at 2:00pm (free), or try it yourself at the Winter Park Public Library's hip-hop dance class, Saturdays at 9:00am ($10+).

What are you doing this weekend?

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