The Way We Were: Billy Bluebeard, the tyrant swan of Lake Lucerne

The swans of Lake Eola might seem like they have always ruled the downtown kingdom—they even have boats in their honor. Quite honestly, the only time they do not seem in total control of their fiefdom is during their annual swan health roundup, or, their personal check up with a veterinarian. The story of Orlando’s “beloved” swans, however, begins at Lake Lucerne.  Once […]

Young scientist heads to Washington

Fourteen-year-old Varun Maden, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) student at Lake Highland Preparatory School, has been chosen as one of the country’s top young scientists.  Maden will be traveling to Washington, D.C. this month to compete in the eighth annual Broadstone MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) competition.  The 30 middle school finalists were chosen from 2,537 applicants from 35 states.  Maden’s love for bees […]

O-Town Interview: Julia Young, Page 15

Julia Young is the founder and executive director of Page 15. This local nonprofit organizes many different programs that aim to enhance reading and writing abilities for kids of all ages. Page 15 organizes events including the High School Writers Competition, Young Writers Summer Camp and Page 15 Parramore, an after-school literacy program.   Young is also co-founder and executive director of the Urban Think Foundation, an umbrella organization of Page 15 and Burrow […]

Business Spotlight: Kelly’s Homemade Ice Cream

After moving to Orlando in 2011 with her husband Scott, pediatric nurse Kelly Seidl couldn’t shake the feeling she had growing up working at an ice cream shop in her hometown of Apalachin, New York. The vibe in the shop and the joy she brought to her customers always felt good and she missed it.  “I just always enjoyed how happy everyone was, co-workers and customers alike,” Kelly said. “It’s really hard to be upset when […]

O-Town Art: October arts scene

With autumn’s arrival, the 2018-2019 season of Orlando Arts has begun. The Orlando Shakespeare Theater is celebrating their 30th anniversary with a new name and logo. It is now the Orlando Shakes, still in partnership with UCF. The facility at Loch Haven Park is now the Lowndes Shakespeare Center and features a variety of plays and musicals besides the classics written by the famous bard.  Now playing through Oct. 7 is the musical […]

Affordable housing and rental income: Accessory Dwelling Units

Living in single-family houses in downtown Orlando can be expensive — at least that’s the perception. A new change to the rules should help alleviate some of the problem, by allowing for more “accessory dwelling units” (ADUs).  So what is an accessory dwelling unit? It’s the technical name for any additional place to live by a single-family house on the same lot, and […]

Augmented reality coming to an art installation near you

Calling all artists, technology fans, art lovers, or anyone who just wants to see something really cool! Downtown Orlando is about to have a very unique public art installation that you can experience on your walks around town. “CITY UNSEEN” produced and curated by Snap! Orlando opens artistic borders by launching the city into Augmented Reality (AR) experiences. This technology is cutting-edge and and is a fusion of art and technology in the 21st century.   Augmented […]

University Club of Orlando: New look, same traditions

Have you noticed a new, distinctly modern, 22-story high-rise on the corner of Central and Rosalind on your walks around Lake Eola? Most of the new building consists of luxury apartments, called Modera Central, featuring high-end sophisticated apartment homes. You may recall that in this spot was a very modest and simple building home to The University Club of Orlando. The […]

O-Town Interview: Michael Dippy, executive director of IDignity

Michael Dippy, the executive director of IDignity, Inc., recognized a unique need in the community and started the process of giving people without the means a way to get an ID. Whether it was lack of documentation, money or transportation, Dippy kept meeting people without identification, and was deeply troubled by the effect that had on them as people. He, […]

Drama and Comedy at the Orlando Opera House

What do William Shakespeare, Jefferson Davis, and a razorback hog have in common? The opera, of course! In 1884, Charles Weimer hired N.C. Stubblefield to construct an opera house on the east side of Court Street, between Pine and Church. The wooden structure had windows lining the front and sides for ventilation with double doors opening directly into an auditorium […]

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