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Newsy Nuggets

Written By Scott Joseph On January 21, 2022

The Ultimate Garden Party; Wine Quest dates; a fiery chili event; a sad Kissimmee closing; and National Irish Coffee Day.

Garden Party logo

Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida is doing something new this year with a fundraiser called the Ultimate Garden Party, which makes me wonder what a subultimate garden party would be.

The subtitle for the event is Escape to Elegance, which makes me wonder why they think that a) I need to escape and b) why they think I’m not currently surrounded in elegance. I’m not saying I am, I’m just wondering how they know.

Anyway, the event will be at the presumably ultra elegant Loews Sapphire Falls Resort on Saturday, May 21, from 1 to 5 p.m. General admission tickets are $150 per person with one hundred percent of the proceeds going to support the organizations efforts to fight hunger in the community.

What can you expect at an Ultimate Garden Party? Hors d’oeuvres, drinks, entertainment. According to a press release, “dapper attire is encouraged.” I’ll have to dig out my dappers and get them to the dry cleaner.

More information and ticket-purchasing at the Second Harvest website.

South Steel SJO March AD copy

Winequest22 logo

As long as we’re talking fundraisers, this year’s Wine Quest wine tasting and auction will be the first weekend in June. (That’s a quick turnaround for the dappers.) The Grand Tasting will be on Friday, June 3, and the Premier Dining Celebration on Saturday, June 4. Loews Royal Pacific Resort will host. Right now the event is in “save the date” status, but you can put your name in on the Wine Quest website to be notified when tickets are available.

FireinparkOh, OK, here’s another fundraiser. The eighth annual Fire in the Park Chili Cook-off to Cure is next Saturday, Jan. 29, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in downtown Avalon Park. (Someone please alert the Avalon Park fire department.) An adult wristband (a dapper one, I’m sure) is $13.50 ($15 at the door, or gate, or whatever) and gets you chili and a chance to vote for your favorite. You can also purchase extra voting tokens, an idea we’ll no doubt be seeing in general elections soon. Tickets, tokens here. The event benefits AdventHealth for Children Pediatric Oncology.


TarantinoWord has reached us from Kissimmee that Tarantino’s Italiano Ristorante has closed. I once considered Tarantino’s one of my favorite “finds,” the kind of wonderful but obscure place a critic loves to present to the readers for the first time. I first reviewed it in 1995 when it occupied a building on U.S. Highway 195, a dapper diamond among the tourist-trappy chains. I reviewed it again in 2005 after it moved to a different address. It was larger and didn’t have the same personal touch, but the food was still among the best Italian you could find in the area. A note on the website says that the owners “are closing this chapter of our lives” after 30 years.

Irish Coffee photo 2 copy

Finally, Tuesday, Jan. 25, is National Irish Coffee Day, though I’m not sure if the national is Ireland or U.S. Whatever, as it has done for several years, Raglan Road at Disney Springs is commemorating the day with a special promotion: you buy a cup of coffee and they’ll provide the whiskey. You’ll also get the sugar and cream that complete the beverage.

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