Warming Up in SW Florida by Claudia Polzin, Independent Consultant

Remember when you first moved to Southwest Florida and all of your friends “Up North” said – how can you stand the Summer months – you then lived here for a while and realized that some of the warmest and most volatile weather happen in August and September – not the months that the Northern friends consider Summer. So during these months we are always looking for ways to find exciting entertainment in our beautiful corner of the world. Because of the pandemic we endured, things are slowly returning to normal with some of our favorite venues having opened up again.

Start the month of August off with a celebration in Baker Park starting at noon on August 7 titled End of Summer Celebration– which the calendar tells us is true but we know a little differently in Florida. But that will not stop us from celebrating in this beautiful park – so join the party and enjoy the great out of doors in Naples.

Every Saturday from August 14 through September 18 you can relax with the Naples Jazz Society at the Norris Center from 1 to 3 p.m. The Jazz Society features Dixieland Jazz, which has its roots in New Orleans – and drew from the influences of the minstrel shows, ragtime and the blues. During the First World War jazz moved out of New Orleans and swept the world morphing into the music of the Roaring Twenties. It continued to be very popular during the Depression Era of the 1930’s but diminished in the face of the Big Band Era of the 1940’s.

Even though many music forms followed, early jazz survives. Jazz is an integral part of our American culture and a truly American art form – from the toe tapping Dixieland to the sounds of the sorrowful blues. So enjoy a couple hours of escape to the world of jazz at the Norris Center –Saturday afternoons.

During the many months of the Pandemic, we saw a return to an entertainment of many years ago – outdoor movie theatres. At Mercato there are Movies on the Lawn – August 17 beginning at 8:15pm you can enjoy “School of Rock” with Jack Black. After being kicked out of his rock band, Dewey Finn (Jack Black) is faced with a mountain of debt. So his roommate convinces him to take a job as a substitute teacher at an uptight elementary private school. He decides to turn his class into a rock band and he learns that his students are talented musicians. His attitude and hijinks end up having a profound influence on his students and they form a rock band that wins a local contest. This movie combines humor and music in an interesting and entertaining way.

Movies on the Lawn continue on September 21 at 7:30pm with “The Upside”. This true life inspired movie combines the talent of Kevin Hart (who plays Del) with Bryan Cranston (who plays Phillip). Phillip is a disabled billionaire who feels that life is not worth living. He advertises for someone to assist him with day to day activities and Del (who is a parolee) applies for the job. He gets the job with Phillip and their escapades lead to a lifelong friendship.

The Naples Players is back in their home theatre at the Sugden and September 29 sees the opening of “Boeing Boeing”. This farce was written by French playwright, Marc Camoletti. This play is set in the 1960’s and the central character is bachelor Bernard. He owns a flat in Paris and three stewardesses believe they are engaged to him and each one of them has no idea about the others. Things are going very smoothly for Bernard until weather complications and new speedier Boeing jets totally disrupt his well-planned schedule. All three stewardesses show up at his flat at the same time and the catastrophe and hilarity begin.

Enjoy all Naples has to offer!

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