Christopher Barton adjusts to life in Orlando as executive director of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra

Christopher Barton may be relatively new to the City Beautiful, but the executive director at the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra hit the ground running since arriving with his family in 2016. His to-do list has never been short of large tasks: Increase the reach of the Phil. Help program a season saying goodbye to the Bob Carr Theater. Collaborate with the […]

Review: Fiddler on the Roof

Watching the most recent musical at the Dr. Phillips Center, “Fiddler on the Roof,” was a very conflicting experience. On one hand, it was an exceptional performance with a stellar cast, but on a deeper level it was haunting because of its connections to historical events in Russia and the Ukraine. Good art, by its very nature, should make one […]

O-Town Interview: Emily Bonilla

District 5 Commissioner

Emily Bonilla was born and raised in the northeast, and she’s called Orlando home since 1998. An alumnus of Valencia College, UCF, and Full Sail University, she has served as Orange County’s District 5 commissioner since 2016. The district covers College Park, Winter Park, and Maitland as well as UCF, Research Park, and much of the east side of the […]

Eola General opens in Eola Heights

Eola General opened its doors to the public in the Eola Heights neighborhood in late February. The general store took the place of the former Handy Pantry, an Eola Heights staple which closed due to financial reasons last September. Eola General, which is just four blocks from Lake Eola, is located at 522 E. Amelia St. “One of my partners […]

A life full of flavor: Celebrating 50 years of a local chef ’s service

He moved to the Orlando area from Washington D.C. amid the chaos of the riots following Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. Since then, chef George Vogelbacher has been bringing fine French dining to the Orlando area for decades. “In 1968 we packed up our Mustang and our cat and moved to Florida,” Vogelbacher said. It began when he opened a […]

The women behind the arts

Because March is International Women’s Month, it is appropriate to celebrate the women of Orlando who have worked so diligently to enrich the many arts offered here. Some are unsung heroes and others are flamboyant divas, but no matter how they have helped, without them Orlando would never have the rich culture that inspires so many. Harriett Lake, a Tribute […]

Scraping it together: antique cooking and Central Florida


Let’s all just take a moment to be thankful for our modern-day supermarkets. Gone are the days of coot liver pilau, donax/coquina broth, and gopher tortoise stew. (Don’t even try that last one; the gopher tortoise is now an endangered species.) Pioneer food seems to me a thing that we today might poke and ask dubiously, “What is it?” But […]

One of the first homework assignments I failed was…

Poetry Corner

Amy Watkins’ poems conjure the fears and joys of childhood and adolescence like it all happened yesterday, and of adulthood stripped clean of the social masks we often wear in the world. This wonderful Orlando poet’s work is well worth exploring. Selected by Susan Lilley. “One of the first homework assignments I failed was…” The lesson was physics I asked […]

Boyett’s Grove and Citrus Attraction


What started as a fruit stand more than 55 years ago has evolved into a classic Florida roadside attraction that still draws visitors today. Located on the top of a hill in Brooksville, Boyett’s Grove and Citrus Attraction not only offers delicious citrus fruit, but also a nostalgic look at Florida oddities, along with a walk on the wild side. […]


Fab Fringe featuring El Wiz March 4 at 6:30 p.m. The award-winning hit of the 27th Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival, “El Wiz,” hits The Abbey as a celebration of Orlando Fringe’s 28th year running. This is a version of the Wizard of Oz set in Puerto Rico, where it’s survived a hurricane. Dorothy’s journey with friends will be filled […]

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