Festival of lights in Melbourne
The Space Coast Light Fest is a family oriented celebration, taking place Nov. 23 through Dec. 31, at Melbourne's Wickham Park, 2500 Parkway Drive, Melbourne.
The area is transformed into a winter wonderland, filled with hundreds of thousands of lights.
Visitors drive through the attraction to witness this once-a-year spectacle.
The event draws more than 15,000 vehicles annually.
Admission is $10 per car. Discounts and promotions can be found at www.spacecoastlightfest.com.
Light Fest is open nightly 5-9:30 p.m.
For more information, call (321) 614-6286.
Country classics to be heard at state park
Hosted by the Friends of Sebastian Inlet State Park, this "Night Sounds" concert will showcase the Country Classics Band Saturday, Nov. 24, 7-9 p.m.
The Country Classics Band is a six-piece band with a Nashville sparkle of family-oriented music.
They play the best of classic country, a little bluegrass and a smidgen of rock 'n' roll from the 1950s to the 1990s.
The band covers the music of Willie, Waylon, Haggard, Cash, Hank, George Strait, Chuck Berry and even Jimmy Buffet.
The concert will take place at the pavilions on Coconut Point, located on the south side of Sebastian Inlet.
The concert is free with regular park entry fees.
Sebastian Inlet State Park is at 9700 S. Highway A1A, Melbourne Beach
For more information about The Country Classics Band, visit www.spacecoastlive.comcalender/band/002416.
For more information about the concert, call (321) 984-4852 or visit www.floridastateparks.org/sebastianinlet.
'Critter Run' in Cocoa
The Central Brevard Humane Society will host its 15th Annual Critter Run on Sunday, Nov. 25, at 10 a.m. at the Humane Society, 1020 Cox Road, Cocoa.
The cost to participate in the poker run will be $7 per hand or two hands for $10. All vehicles are welcome.
The run begins at the Central Brevard Humane Society and will end at Dog 'n' Bone British Pub, 9 Stone St., Cocoa Village.
The first bike out will be scheduled to leave at 10 a.m., with the last one departing at 11:30 a.m.
Event activities will include a 50/50 drawing, vendor displays, food and live entertainment by the Big Daddy Band, beginning at 1 p.m.
Prizes will be awarded for "best," "worst" and "mystery" hands.
Event sponsors include ABATE of Florida Inc. - Brevard Chapter, Sally Bargain Barn & Pawn Shop and the AT&T Real Yellow Pages.
Other sponsorship opportunities are available at different levels, and donations are greatly appreciated.
If you would like more information on sponsorship opportunities, contact Theresa Clifton at (321) 636-3343 or email email@example.com.
All proceeds from this event helps to raise awareness and financial support for the thousands of unwanted and abandoned pets that visit the shelter each year, who need a safe and loving "forever" home.
For more information, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit crittersavers.com.
Jazz band at flea market
The Central Brevard Humane Society's Jazz Band will perform from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25 at the Super Flea & Farmers Market, 4835 W. Eau Gallie Blvd., Melbourne.
This will be a free concert featuring a mix of jazz and blues music (and requests).
Society shelter dogs will be showcased.
All donations raised will help to create awareness and financial support for homeless animals in Brevard County.
For more information, call (321) 636-3343 or visit www.crittersavers.com.
Christmas tour at King Center
Kave Koz and Friends Christmas Tour 2012, a holiday tradition marking its 15th anniversary, will be at the King Center for the Performing Arts, 3865 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne, at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 27.
Joining Mr. Koz this year will be David Benoit, Javier Colon, Sheila E. and Margo Rey.
For more information, call (321) 242-2219 or visit www.davekoz.com, www.benoit.com, www.javiercolon.com, www.sheilae.com and www.margorey.com.
"Daniel Askerov in Concert" will perform violin classics from Israel's rising star at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28, at the Riverside Presbyterian Church, 3400 N. Atlantic Ave., (Highway A1A), Cocoa Beach.
The concert is free.
For more information, call (321) 252-7276 or visit www.spacecoastsymphony.org.
Food and wine comes to town
Tickets are now available online for "Celebrate Brevard."
Purchase tickets in advance and the cost is only $20. The cost is $25 the night of the event.
The Seventh Annual Celebrate Brevard 2012- Food and Wine Extravaganza is hosted by the Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce and will be Friday, Nov. 30, 6-9 p.m. at the Palm Bay Hotel and Conference Center, 1881 Palm Bay Road N.E., Palm Bay.
There will be food samples from more than 35 local restaurants and holiday vendor booths.
The sponsors are: Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce, Waste Management, PIP Printing, 98.5 The Beach, Health First of Palm Bay, State Farm and Palm Bay Hotel and Conference Center.
Contact the Greater Palm Bay Chamber for more information regarding the event and/or vendor space availability at (321) 951-9998 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holiday ball slated
The Swingtime Jazz Band's dance holiday ball is a dance by an 18-member big band 7-10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, at the Melbourne Auditorium, 625 E. Hibiscus Blvd., Melbourne.
Tickets cost $5 in advance and $7 at the door.
For more information, contact (321) 724-0555, email email@example.com or visit www.melbournemunicipalband.org.
Dance instruction is available from 6-7 p.m. for $5, payable to Laura Beers at www.adancersvoice.com.
The Swingtime Jazz Band ensemble of the Melbourne Municipal Band also presents free concerts, featuring jazz and big band standards. In addition, Swingtime's dances have long been a favorite of local dancers and jazz lovers looking for a reasonably priced, toe-tapping evening.
Art Martin, a tenor and baritone saxophonist directs this 18-piece band. He has performed with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra, Dizzy Gillespie and The Platters, to name just a few.
Beach festival coming up
A combination of food, music, live entertainment, vendor displays, artwork training and educational activities will be featured at the Ocean, Reef & Beach Festival Saturday, Dec. 1 at Satellite Beach's Pelican Beach Park.
The Anglers for Conservation, Pure Ocean TV and the Surfrider Foundation are sponsoring this event.
Free and fun activities will be provided for all ages. Programs for both children and adults will focus on ocean, reef and beach activities, such as surfing, conservation, fishing, marine art, kayaking, stand- up paddling, sea beaning and other related topics.
A few of the clinics offered will be: hooked on surf fishing programs, sustainable fishing and survival of the beach.
For more information, call (321) 750-3374 or visit www.pureoceanproductions.com.
Donating in style
Saturday, Dec. 1, marks the 12th Annual Brevard County Corvette Clubs Toy Run to benefit less fortunate children.
All Corvette owners are encouraged to attend and bring a gift certificate, gift card or unwrapped toy or book, worth a minimum of $20, for infants to 18 year-olds and a non-perishable food item for distribution to the many families in need.
Cars will stage at Eckler's Corvette Parts, 5140 S. Washington Ave., (U.S. Highway 1), Titusville, beginning at noon. The caravan will depart at 2 p.m. sharp.
The Brevard County Sheriffs Office will provide a police escort from Eckler's to Rusty's Seafood and Oyster Bar in Port Canaveral, blocking all cross traffic so the caravan does not have to stop, even on the Beachline Expressway! The Cape Canaveral Volunteer Fire Department will collect and distribute all of the donations.
A social gathering will be held immediately following the run on the waterfront deck at Rusty's - a great place to watch the cruise ships depart.
And to top off a fun and rewarding day and really get in the Christmas spirit, you'll be treated to a Christmas boat parade beginning at 5:30 p.m.
So tell your Corvette friends, even non-club members, to come and join the fun while helping out the less fortunate.
For more information and the flyer, visit www.capekennedycorvetteclub.com, www.spacecoastvettes.com or call the Cape Kennedy Corvette Club at (321) 452-6993.
Holiday favorite comes to Melbourne
Ultimate Dance Florida is once again presenting the holiday classic "The Nutcracker" on Thursday, Dec. 1, at 2 p.m. at Holy Trinity Upper School's The Scott Center, located at 5625 Holy Trinity Drive, Melbourne.
Tickets cost $15 for the show and $5 to add on the "Tea Party with the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Friends."
This time-honored classic, starring Patricia Storelli, registered ballet teacher and author of the book, "The Magic of Pointe Shoes" and Taylor Kindred from the Kirov Academy in Washington and company member with Ajkun Ballet in New York, will warm your heart and start your holiday season off just right!
Tickets can be purchased at the Ultimate Dance Florida locations Monday through Thursday, from 4-8 p.m. and at the Viera location, Saturday from 9:15 a.m. to noon or from a cast member.
For more information, visit UDF's website at www.ultimatedanceflorida.com.
Foodies to compete in five categories
"Food Truck Wars" continues to bring its phenomenon to "foodies" throughout the state of Florida.
The next stop is Titusville 4-10 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 1, on U.S. 1, between Pine Street and Broad Avenue northbound, in Titusville.
Forty gourmet food trucks from all over the state will line the streets to compete in five categories. The competition has been extended this round to include the Spirit Award, as well as the People's Choice Award, Top Sales, Delectable Dessert and Casual Cuisine.
There will be some new trucks debuting and some from previous rounds, seeking revenge. "Foodies" will have a chance to vote on cuisines from Latin America, British, Caribbean, gourmet desserts and everything in between.
Celebrity chef judges, spearheaded by Chef Jim Whaples, retired president of the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association, will be on hand to judge Casual Cuisine and Delectable Dessert, while the people will judge the prestigious People's Choice Award.
Main Street Titusville and the Titusville Downtown Merchant Association will be at the event, working along with the shows promoters to raise money in support of local charities.
The event will include free admission, a beer and wine garden, live music with national recording artist Tony Wynn, a free kid's area and more.
Food costs generally run from $3 to $18. Most entrees run $6 to $8.
The phenomenon of Gourmet Food Truck rivalry (all in the name of good fun, of course) has been a huge hit. At the inaugural event in March, an estimated 30,000 people turned up. Thirty-seven food trucks sold out of food completely.
In addition to bringing communities together through this amazing battle of food trucks, food truck owners and "foodies" have donated more than $10,000 to various communities, which have hosted the events.
Holiday festival comes to the park
The City of Cocoa Leisure Services is proud to present the 19th Annual Cocoa's Holiday Festival on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 5-9 p.m. in the Riverfront Park.
The festivities for this old-fashioned Christmas celebration include holiday performances, "Kazoobie Kazoo Show" with Rick Hubbard, Dickens Carolers, snow play, visit with Santa and the much-loved traditional Christmas tree lighting.
The event finale will be "Arthur Christmas," shown on the big outdoor movie screen, starting at 7:30 pm.
Join in for a magical night of holiday spirit and entertainment!
To participate in all of the kids' activities, including the bounce house, face painting, snow play, arts and crafts and more, there is a $5 activity band fee.
Visits with Santa, entertainment and the holiday movie are free. This is a safe and fun event for children of all ages!
Contact Leisure Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (321) 639-3500 for more information.
Free all-star game weekend
The 2013 Heroes and Legends baseball tour in Brevard County Saturday, Dec. 1, will kick off with a free all-star game at Space Coast Stadium, spring training home of the Washington Nationals and the Milwaukee Brewers high A MiLB team, the Manatees.
The tour can be found at www.wounddheroesbaseball.com, and it will also feature a weekend of celebrity events for charity in the community.
The event will feature former MLB and NFL legends such as Jay Johnstone and two-time Super Bowl champion Lincoln Coleman taking on a team of military heroes in an all-star game format, complete with a home-run derby.
The game is free to the public.
The game will also have various patriotic displays and demonstrations from military members.
The gates open at 5 p.m. to the public with the home-run derby starting at 6 p.m.
For more information, email email@example.com or call (321) 604-9907.
Holiday musical tribute planned
A big band holiday tribute to Duke Ellington and Count Basie with the Orlando Jazz Orchestra will be held Sunday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m. at the Henegar Center, 625 E. New Haven Ave., Melbourne.
These are Central Florida area musicians with a special guest master of ceremonies celebrating the music of big band greats with a holiday twist.
To purchase tickets and for more information, call (321) 783-9004, (321) 723-8698 or visit www.brevardmusicgroup.com.
Local chorale performance scheduled
The Brevard Chorale, started in 1966, is an affiliate of Brevard Community College. The Chorale meets in the Bernard Simpkins Fine Arts Center on the BCC Cocoa campus, 1519 Clearlake Road, Mondays at 7 p.m. during the school year.
The chorale will perform Monday, Dec. 3, at 7:30 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Cocoa, 825 Forest Ave., Cocoa.
Tickets for adults and seniors cost $10, and student's tickets cost $5.
The chorale will also perform Wednesday, Dec. 5, at 6:30 p.m. at the Indian River City United Methodist Church, 1355 Cheney Highway, Titusville.
A free will offering will be received.
New members are welcome to join during the first two weeks of each new semester. Join in on Monday, Jan. 7, if you would like to participate in the spring season.
Spirits of the season
More than a dozen local restaurants and bars will be shaking it up at the Melbourne Regional Chamber's annual "Martinis & Mistletoe" event.
Presented in partnership with Twin Rivers Insurance Inc., this year's holiday event will be held on Friday evening, Dec. 7, from 6-9 p.m. at Rosner Chevrolet.
Each year, this event, which draws more than 250 attendees, features the "Best Martini on the Melbourne Coast" competition, where restaurants and bars compete to see which can create the most exotic looking and best tasting martini.
Guests have the opportunity to sample each of the creative variations on the traditional martini recipe from all of the contestants before casting their ballot.
The cost to attend the event is $45 per person, which includes a holiday buffet, olive bar, dessert and coffee bars, music and dancing, as well as a souvenir specialty martini glass, etched with the "Martinis and Mistletoe" logo.
Challengers currently set to compete for the coveted title are:
o Outback Steakhouse
o RendezVous Restaurant & Lounge at Holiday Inn Viera
o Runaway Country Music Festival/Grills Riverside Seafood Restaurant
o Lafitte's Hilton Rialto
o Crowne Plaza Melbourne Oceanfront
o The Broken Barrel Tavern
o River Rocks Restaurant
o Uno Chicago Grill
o Hilton Melbourne Beach Oceanfront and
o Longhorn Steakhouse
In addition to the martini competition, contenders put their creative talents into decorating their individual serving stations to vie for the "Best Decorated" award.
For information about how to participate in this year's "Martinis & Mistletoe" event as a competitor, contact Cassie Hansen at firstname.lastname@example.org or (321) 724-5400, Ext. 231.
If you are interested in sponsoring this event, please contact Stephanie Franklin at email@example.com, or call (321) 724-5400, Ext. 225.
To register as an attendee, visit www.melbourneregionalchamber.com and click on Events/Event Calendar & Registration.
Ensemble brings traditions to life
Thanks to Charles Dickens and a flood of nostalgia for the 19th century, the Dickens Carolers of the Brevard Theatrical Ensemble take you on a musical and storytelling adventure into some of the traditions that are included in celebrating Christmas, which have been around since before the Middle Ages.
The Dickens Carolers and Tellers perform for many groups during this season, ending by Tuesday, Dec. 18. The groups are for hire.
For more information, call (321) 676-0697 or visit www.brevardensemble.com.
Holiday flutes, voices concerts to be held
The Indialantic Chamber Singers and the Space Coast Flute Orchestra will perform its 12th annual Christmas concert Sunday, Dec. 9, at 2 p.m. at Suntree United Methodist Church and again at 4:30 p.m. at Eastminster Presbyterian Church.
This year's concert is a mix of celebratory music for the holidays:
o "White Christmas" a favorite
o African noel, traditional African carol
o "Jingle Bells" prism, unique arrangement
o Santa's symphony, something new
o French nativity suite, French carols in an arrangement for flutes
o Bell carol, fun for everyone
And add in the favorites the audience comes every year to enjoy. Arrive early to get a seat or you may have to stand to enjoy the holiday music.
Suntree United Methodist Church is at 7400 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne.
Eastminster Presbyterian Church is at 106 N. Riverside Drive, Indialantic.
For more information, call (321) 242-2585 or (321) 723-8371.
New Years Eve party
DJ Mike Harvey will be broadcasting live New Year's Eve from Melbourne's Hilton Rialto's Wakefield Ballroom.
The event is sponsored by 98.5 The Beach radio and the Brevard Music Group.
For more details and all-inclusive packages, visit brevardmusicgroup.com