February is the peak of manatee-related activities. I know I went to Blue Springs on my last visit, but I went back because it is a refuge for these awesome creatures and I wanted to see some. While we were there, there were ten. Pretty self-explanatory. This place is beautiful, regardless of the weather. It was raining like crazy while we were there, and it was perfect. www.bluespringspark.com/
If you are trying to go to the beach, I would suggest Daytona Beach. When we were in FL last time, we drove out to Cocoa Beach, and it was difficult to find parking. When we finally did find parking, we had to walk a few blocks to get down there. Not too bad, but in Daytona, we paid $10 and got to drive onto the sand and park right on the beach. This may not seem like a big deal to some people, but when I lived in SoCal I don't recall ever being able to park right on the sand. I was stoked. Even in February the water was really warm. So warm in fact, that one would be a moron not to take their pants off and dive right in. Not saying I did that, but I'm also saying I'm not a moron. (You can put two and two together.)
This time around, I made a stop at a few gay places that you don't have to be gay to enjoy. Let me tell you about them.
Southern Nights is an awesome little venue. We were there on a Tuesday night, and it was surprisingly packed for a non-weekend. It was talent show night and lots of queens, bio queens, and men with singing talents were showing off their stuff. It was quality entertainment, a great atmosphere, and a loving, fun crowd. I wish we could have come back for a full-on drag show or karaoke night, but we were only out for six days. I'm not sure about this, but I feel as though drinks were free with the entry fee... sounds too good to be true, and it may be... I don't drink, so I am not positive on that one. Home to professional and amateur drag queens alike, we saw one of the runners up from Rupaul's Drag Race perform here before the talent show. southernnightsorl.com/
If you are looking for something a little less conventional, you may want to swing by Parliament House. We didn't stay here too long, but this is a club/bar, attached to a hotel, which I am assuming you can rent by the hour; I didn't ask. This place feels more like a community than a club, and food trucks and portable shops set up outside, making it a very multi-faceted visit. Pretty cool to see (at least). www.parliamenthouse.com/?pagerd_fo13g7wduj062kh3680k9
A quiet little bar to try is Savoy. This is one of the more low-key GBs that we visited. There may be a go-go boy gyrating in his underpants, but that's about as crazy as I feel it will get. The site claims it to be "The hottest gay club in Orlando." It probably could be, because it is such an intimate space. There is a separate dance room with laser-type lights, good music, and reasonably-priced drinks. Nice, dark little bar bordering the downtown. http://www.savoyorlando.com/
When you leave Savoy, turn left, and you will find yourself in an interesting little shop called Mojoman. This is an underwear store for men. I've never seen so many pairs of underwear... thongs, things with hooks, bathing suits, and other things. If you want to find out, you'd better go check it out yourself because I try to keep this blog as clean as possible.
It may not sound like a big deal to you, but I went to the Waffle House. They don't have these where I come from. This place has awesome service and even better food. I know it's a franchise, but I'm assuming that they all have great service, because to imagine a chain of restaurants that has all and only amazing service makes me happy. It just does.
Church Street is an amazing treasure we stumbled upon on Saturday night. This place is chock full of restaurants, bars, shops, and PEOPLE. We stopped in at Hamburger Mary's where a drag show was going on, and valet parked so avoid walking too much, (because walking is yucky), and also, many drunkards were stumbling around and I was afraid I was going to kill one of them. So, if you don't mind making your way through a sea of boozehounds, this is a charming little area with a nostalgic feel and a lot to offer. www.churchstreetdistrict.com/
If you like arcade games and beer, you should go to Player 1 Video Game Bar. Downside: only beer, no liquor. Upside: You'll probably play better for longer because you won't get drunk as fast. This place has a $5 cover charge, but the games are free. I'm not sure, but I feel like some of the systems are rigged so that you don't die and start over once you've used up all of your lives. I was playing Ninja Turtles for a good 30 minutes and never had to start over despite the fact that I died over and over. It would count down my lives, but then I kept coming back when I used them all up. There are a bunch of old games, and a little area with some sort of Call of Duty. There's DDR. However, there is no Jurassic Park. This is my only real complaint. player1orlando.com/
Places I didn't see but still want to
Wonderworks seems frickin' fantastic, but it's hard to convince adults to go to upside down museums with you. Check it out, tell me about it. http://www.wonderworksonline.com/
Kennedy Space Center is too expensive for me... $10 parking and $50 entrance fee. However, they have two things I'd really like to experience. 1. Lunch with an astronaut, and 2. a tour of NASA. We got to drive kind of close to the place where they let off rockets, but it's on a restricted base and you can't go too close unless you work there. www.kennedyspacecenter.com/
No matter where you go, or what you do, live it up because you only live once. Wake up early, stay up late. Be a yes man. Even if you're tired, go out and see it. Go out and do it. Do everything. Be a bad ass. Don't be a lame-o. You can sleep when you're dead. #believeinyourselfandtryreallyhard
Ashley and Cecilia work hard, play hard, write stuff, read stuff... because they don't know what else to do with their lives.
I- We should buy something superficial
II- Buy odd clothing
I- An Unusual Social Event
I- We should go somewhere with dangerous animals
I- Somewhere with strange food
When we get ten total votes, the item with the highest number of votes will be our next expedition.
(One vote per reader, per category).