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Design for the Adventurous at Rare Device

Design savvy bay area shoppers know Rare Device as the place to get everything from nautical lore to laser-etching and everything inbetween.

Co-owners, and designers, Rena Tom and Lisa Congdon take pride in their handmade, beautifully crafted collection of zany wares that add panache to a humdrum home. Every object was hand picked specifically because of it’s unique story, it’s usefulness, and it’s position in the modern, quirky aesthetic of the shop.

Part shop, part gallery, Rare Device enjoys hosting traveling shows for many modern artists of today.

Simply put, Rare Device is good stuff for a good home.

Experience True American Ballet with the San Francisco Ballet

As America’s first and oldest professional ballet company, the San Francisco Ballet is a must-see for anyone looking to truly experience the American style of ballet. It is among the world’s leading dance companies and one of the three largest American ballet companies, and is the company responsible for premiering ballet staples like Swan Lake & Nutcracker to American audiences.

The company presents more than 100 memorable performances annually, from new works by today’s most prominent choreographers to new interpretations of classic full-length productions. Led by world-famous Helgi Tomasson, the company consists of a diverse international repertoire that is always presented with finesse and elegance.

The company is currently based in the beautiful 3,146-seat War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco. With its elegant lines, vaulted ceiling, marble foyer, and sweeping balconies, the opera house complements and completes the breathtaking experience that is the San Francisco Ballet.

Fun Amenities at the Warwick Hotel

The Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel is in walking distance to two of Philadelphia’s finest locations, Avenue of the Arts and Rittenhouse Square. This stately beauty was built in 1926, Picture 18but was recently modernized in style and in amenities, perfect for those who can’t sleep at night without their 32” plasma HD televisions and granite baths.  And not only is there complimentary breakfast in the morning, but hors d’oeuvres in the evening as well.

If you haven’t caught on yet, Philadelphia loves dogs and they love them so much that the fancy Warwick Hotel hosts Yappy Hours for the furry friends. Nope, no typo there – Yappy Hours are happy hours for fuzzy pups and pup-parents. In the warm months, the Warwick welcomes guests of [literally] all shapes and sizes to enjoy some quality time together outside the restaurant, over cocktails and gourmet munchies for dogs and people.

For those looking for a great location and a ritzy hotel with a lot of personality, the Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel is an ideal accommodation.

A World-Class Experience at the Pennsylvania Ballet

From Philadelphia’s yearly favorite George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker to world premieres of contemporary pieces, The Pennsylvania Ballet is always in the city spotlight. The Pennsylvania Ballet presents fourteen ballets in Philadelphia every year featuring classic favorites, new works, and commissioned pieces that always attract an audience.

If you’re looking for the classic ballet experience, visit the majestic Academy of Music on Broad Street during the holidays to see Nutcracker or in the summer to see Romeo and Juliet. The Ballet also performs at the Merriam Theater, which is getting up-to-snuff on the theater scene after having been taken over by new management.

If you have never attended a ballet, the Pennsylvania Ballet is a world-class experience. The dancers are beautiful, the full orchestra is enchanting, and being in a 153-year old theater (Academy of Music) where thousands of people have seen hundreds of ballets before you is quite the feeling.

New Armani Exchange Flagship Heats Up Miami

If anyone knows how to re-open a store, it seems to be Armani Exchange. For the premiere, the Miami Beach’s Vice Mayor named it the “Official Armani Exchange” day and Hollywood stars traveled 3000 miles to celebrate and try on some of Armani’s sexy shades.

The new South Beach flagship is bigger and sleeker with futuristic steel accents and clean lines, while still keeping the art deco feel of Miami. The brand, which was created in 1991 to dress the urban, street-chic customers, still captures that fun, young, and sexy energy today. With the Miami essentials of tiny party dresses, smoky shades, and tight t-shirts, the new Armani Exchange is bigger in size and sex appeal.

BONeJOUR – Fine Accessories for Our Furry Friends

All pets are rock stars says BONeJOUR, and we certainly agree – especially when Fluffy is wearing her skull and crossbones couture collar. BONeJOUR is Old City’s pet boutique, outfitting your pup or kitty in only the finest collars, leads and accessories.

If your pooch is a princess, this shop will outfit them in tiaras, barrettes and bows for any occasion. There’s also rhinestone pendants and glitter cat collars if you prefer our feline friends. And all of our furry friends will be lounging in style on the state-of-the-art animal beds.

BONeJOUR promises that they love your pet as much as you do, which means that they have taken extra care to make sure the treats are nutritious, the toys are durable, and the leashes will keep your pet harnessed, which makes Mommy and Daddy very happy.

Figo Serves Up Good Italian

figo 38660129p1Technically named “Osteria del Figo” but simply called “Figo”, the Howell Mill edition of this popular metro-area upscale Italian chain plays well with both the business and leisure crowd. Casual and cool, Figo is modern with lots of Italian flair beginning with the walls bathed in amber and the wooden bar and tables. It’s more spacious than it appears, accommodating large and small parties alike. Orders are made at the front of the house with guests then receiving colorfully festive pepper shakers to place at their table for food delivery.

Simplicity is king here, with the build-your-own-pasta serving as the main draw. Make a ravioli, short or long pasta selection and then pair it with a sauce. For traditional fare with a pleasant kick, try the Tuscan Sausage and Apple Ravioli with the Arrabbiata sauce (spicy tomato sauce with garlic and chili peppers). The Spinach Penne with the Salmone con Piselli (oak-smoked salmon and English peas in pink vodka sauce) is also good but, with over a dozen ravioli and pasta choices and nearly that many sauces, the combinations are truly endless.

The Caprese Salad, prepared with buffalo mozzarella and vine-ripe tomatoes, is a nice jump-starter. Tiramisu is a given but Kenny’s Key Lime pie, from the locally-based super pie company, is a welcomed American indulgence.

Find World-Class Luxury at the St. Regis Atlanta

Embracing one of the world’s finest hotels was very easy for Atlantans clamoring for world-class luxury. So far, the St. Regis hasn’t disappointed. Tucked away near the heart of Buckhead, the St. Regis is both accessible and exclusive, so there’s a resort feel without the hassle of having to travel far to find things.

But why travel at all when Picture 15everything needed is right there? Work out anytime at the 24-hour fitness facility. Relax at Remède Spa where there’s no one service fits all policy. Instead, services are unique and customized to the guest. Therefore, no facial or massage is the same.

Envision high living on the Mediterranean at the sprawling pool piazza, with its tropical plants and cascading waterfall. Don’t lift a finger thanks to the private butler service, but do bring on the night with the traditional Champagne Sabering dating back to Napoleon Bonaparte’s era. And, of course, fine dining is a requirement at Paces 88. For serious unwinding, there’s the Wine Room or the even more popular St. Regis Bar.

With plush accommodations and such fabulous amenities, no wonder locals and travelers alike rave about the St. Regis Atlanta. All hotels are clearly not equal.

Top Chef Hosea Rosenberg Dines at Colt & Gray

When Top Chef’s Season 5 winner- and Boulder resident- Hosea Rosenberg goes to Denver for a night out, he heads to new restaurant Colt & Gray.  Hosea told citybuzz, “They are cooking the food that chefs, like myself, like to eat,” which is always a very, very good sign.

For Hosea, the self-admitted key to his culinary heart is “all things pork,” and Colt & GrayPicture 8 holds that key with delicious dishes like the Long Family Crispy Pig Trotters Appetizer (a.k.a. pig’s feet!) and Grilled Long Farm Pork Chop Entree. But other dishes, non pork-related, have been receiving the same sort of praise in Denver write-ups, like the Potted Peeky Toe Crab Appetizer (a crab spread) and the House Made Ricotta Ravioli Entree.

But we all know there is so much more that makes a restaurant great, and Colt & Gray has that, too. The resident mixologist mixes up a mean spin on the classic Manhattan, the New 1920’s Cocktail, with absinthe as the special ingredient. And even the decor received attention for itself with a write-up in Elle Decor Magazine.

For such a young restaurant, the amount of amazing reviews is enviable, and the dessert of its meal of great press is making the top 10 of Denver Magazine’s 25 Best Restaurant Lists. Sure, Top Chef ‘s Hosea Rosenberg and all the magazines in the world can tell you it’s great, but just one meal at Colt & Gray will make you understand what everyone’s talking about.

*** Hosea Rosenberg was the Season 5 winner of Bravo’s top rated competition show Top Chef. Hosea is a resident of Boulder, Colorado and the Chef at Jax Fish House in Boulder. Besides his Top Chef title, Hosea has won many awards including Best Chef three years in a row at the Denver International Wine Festival, Guest Chef at the James Beard House, and his restaurant, Jax, has received the Best Seafood Restaurant in the Denver/Boulder area since opening in 1994.

Demystifying the JFK Myth at The Sixth Floor Museum

The Sixth Floor Museum is dedicated to the myth that still surrounds the assassination of former President John F. Kennedy. By reconstructing the political environment of the Sixties and showing original footage of those days, the visitor is transferred back right up to the very moment of the tragedy on one of the most notorious days in American history. See through the very window the sniper looked through as he set up his rifle and fired the fatal shot. History could not be more hands-on or emotional than at the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza.

Impressive, Beautiful Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Isabella Stewart Gardner was an heiress and something of a black sheep of late-19th- and early-20th-century Boston society: She was a rabid Red Sox and horse-racing fan. Funded by a $1.75 million inheritance, Gardner personally designed this four-story building, modeled on a Venetian palazzo, to house her extensive collection of art and antiquities.
The collection includes 15th-century Flemish tapestries, a first edition of Dante’s Divine Comedy, inscrutable documents like the one signed by Marie Antoinette, and paintings by Monet, Sargent, Holbein, Whistler, Rembrandt, Matisse, Michelangelo, and Titian. A visit to the museum is like meandering through a treasure chest of a wealthy, if eccentric, great aunt.

Visit to see the latest exhibits and schedules.

Phantom of the Opera

Phantom of the Opera

The Night Belongs to Phantom–now celebrating twenty years as Broadway’s most haunting love story. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s masterwork is an international phenomenon that unmasks emotions like no other show can. You’ll be entranced by the timeless story. Phantom of the Opera – Majestic Theatre, 247 West 44th Street.

Major League Baseball at Wrigley Field and U.S. Cellular Field

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It’s spring time again, which means the Chicago’s two baseball teams are suiting up for an exciting new season. Get into the baseball spirit by visiting either of Chicago’s two Major League Baseball teams. The Chicago Cubs play at the “friendly confines” of Wrigley Field on the north side. The White Sox play at U.S. Cellular Field on the south side. Both teams have excellent players and are looking to have great seasons. No matter what team you root for, it’ll be a great time.

Click here for information about the Cubs. Click here for information about the White Sox.

Mountaintop Premiere

The Mountaintop takes place in 1968 and is a thrilling, eye-opening look back at events the night before the assassination of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Following Dr. King’s most famous and memorable speech, he retreats back to his room at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. What follows are the final moments of Dr. King’s life.

This play will have you holding your breath, just as much as Dr. King held on to hope, for a better world.

Piola’s Pizzas Bring a World of Flavor to ATL

Hidden next to RA Sushi, across the street from the Loews Hotel, Piola is truly one of Atlanta’s best kept secrets. Part of a worldwide chain originating in Italy in 1986, Piola has a laid-back, fun, international vibe. Cozy and colorful, Piola is great for unwinding alone, with friends or with a special someone. The warm and inviting atmosphere just takes the edge off the day.

Grab a seat at the bar and make a request forPicture 4 the fabulous Coconut Mojito, which is not necessarily on the menu. A must try is also the Sgroppino Al Limone, or simply lemon ice cream (well gelato) and vodka; it’s a signature drink for a reason. Happy hour is from 5pm-8pm and there are always some free appetizers to sample.

Venture past the bar for more extensive dining. Pizza- thin, brick oven style – really is the thing and the Margherita is always a winner, but it’s far from the only pizza option. Piola has Featured Piola “Pizze,” like the Rio de Janeiro with chicken, catupiry cheese, parsley, tomato sauce and mozzarella; Classic Pizze, like the Margherita; and Le Pizze Bianche, or White Pizza, which is are the classic pizzas without tomato sauce. Piola is also known for its gnocchi and hosts monthly, all-you-can-eat “Gnocchi Day.” And, for dessert, you can’t go wrong with a classic tiramisu.

When it comes to having a laid-back good time, Piola truly knows what makes the world go round.

Exotic Designs from CP Fusão

Georgia peaches can perfect their sheen at this fierce flagship. Clothes and jewelry that stop fashion and demand attention, designer and owner, Christine Phillips, has translated her European and Eastern travels into every gleaming item sold here. From Alexander McQueen to Malaysian sensation, Ren, there’s no shortage of fabulously one-of-a-kind finds.

Plan an Urban Adventure in Philadelphia

Exploring a new city can be overwhelming. Fortunately, sites like ours can help give you the inside tips for Philly hotspots. However, sometimes it is nice to have someone take you by the hand to help you really experience the city. Philadelphia Urban Adventures provides a knowledgeable fun team that offers a variety of tours.  Every vacation deserves a few beers, so what not learn something along the way? The Philly On Tap Tour, run by Philadelphia Urban Adventures, takes you to the city’s most unique, friendly, and eclectic watering holes. The tour runs from 5pm-7pm, providing an unforgettable happy hour.  Enjoy staple Philadelphia beers; learn about local breweries and the history behind popular drinking establishments in the city. You’ll quickly find out why Philadelphia is one of America’s best beer cities, and be ready in time for a night out on the town! Visit to book your tour!

Insiders Tip: Tours are unavailable on Sundays and Mondays, so keep that in mind when planning your next Philadelphia trip!

Melograno- Rustic Italian BYOB with room for all

Philadelphia is known for its BYOB restaurants. The only downside is that many BYOB restaurants are small and cramped. While some may enjoy the small rustic charm, others like to eat without elbowing their neighbor. Melograno located in Rittenhouse Square offers authentic Italian cuisine in a spacious atmosphere. If you have a larger party to accommodate, this is definitely the place to gather friends with copious bottles of wine. Chef Gianluca Demontis expanded Melograno to their location on 20th and Spruce for business, and in return created a more desired dining atmosphere with an expanded menu. From snail soup to classic Italian dishes like Carbanora, every dish is unique with a touch of Roman flare. For the full menu visit

Insider’s Tip: Like many Philadelphia BYOB restaurants, Melograno is closed on Mondays. They only accept reservations on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings- Fridays and Saturdays are walk-in only. 215.875.8116

Creperie Beau Monde/L’Etage: French Food, European Night Life

Off the beaten trail, and nestled in South Philadelphia this French sensation offers an experience unlike any other. A savory lunch or dinner at Creperie Beau Monde is something unique. From hearty buckwheat crepes to sweet crepes, mouthwatering salads to flavorful cheese plates Beau Monde is a foodies dream. The fresh vintage setting brings a feeling of France to the intersection of sixth and Bainbridge. On top (literally) of all of the wonder that is Beau Monde is L’Etage, where the French flare is illuminated into the night. There you can find a DJ pumping beats in a cozy cabaret setting well equipped with a dance floor.

If you are looking for a night of dinner and dancing or a memorable luncheon, Beau Monde/ L’Etage has it all under one roof. The Creperie is open Tues-Fri:12-12, Sat:10-11 and the cabaret upstairs runs Tue-Thu,Sun 7:30pm-1am; Fri-Sat 7:30pm-2am.

Insider’s Tips: L’Etage offers special nights for live cabaret, music, film and Djs.

Garces Trading Company- A Unique Concept

Located in West Washington Square, Garces Trading Company offers a dining experience unlike any other. Whether you are dining at home and looking for a gourmet touch, or looking to dine out-Chef Jose Garces has created a one-stop shop. Food Network’s newest Iron Chef has joined forces with the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board and opened Garces Trading Company, a cafe, wine shop and on-site bakery. Not only can you go in and purchase a bottle of wine to take home, but you can also buy a bottle with no markup price to accompany you at your table as an afforable asset to your meal. Along with a phenomenal menu for diners, customers can also purchase artisan cheeses, charcuterie, breads, desserts and much more. Although the restaurant is in the middle of the market, the ambience is charming and does not lack an ounce of rustic flare. This unique concept in a Philadelphia original and definitely worth a trip.

Insiders Tip: Check out the vingegar bar, where you can find a plethora of choices to dip your bread in before dinner. The pomegranate balsamic vinegar is delicious! Yum!

Flay brings the flavor to University City- Bobby’s Burger Palace

Food Network stars are no stranger to the Philadelphia food scene. Inspired by chef and TV personality Bobby Flay’s boyhood summers at the Jersey Shore, Bobby’s Burger Palace offers a gourmet spin on a fast-food favorite. A burger with fresh goat chesse and lemon meyer honey mustard runs for a reasonable price of $7.50, cheapier than most fancy burgers you would find in an upscale restaurant. You can also get the standard burger sides like fries at $2.50 or a thick creamy milkshakes for $5 a pop. With hip leather barstools, this 71-seat David Rockwell designed eatery resembles a back-to-the-future burger joint. I am sure Marty McFly would approve!

Insider’s Tip: If they ask you if you would like your burger “crunchified”, don’t be concerned. No they are not offering to burn it to a crispy black- they simply want to know if you would like to add chips on your burger for that extra bite!

Jolly Weldon’s Dueling Piano Bar: Jolly Good Time

Located in the heart of Rittenhouse, at 2006 Chestnut St, Jolly’s Dueling Piano Bar is small venue that creates a lot of noise! Jolly Weldon’s 125-seat space surrounds two baby grands for pianists Anthony “Tony T” DeCarolis and “Wildman Joe” Marchetti. Every Tuesday through Saturday, these talented musicians battle to encourage the crowd to sing along with them to a 2,000+ song repertoire.

An abundant menu of snacks will feed your hunger as you work up an appetite singing along to all of your favorites. There’s also a two-hour happy hour from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. nightly with $3 well cocktails, $3 glasses of select red and white wines and $3 domestic beers, to help you sing your best!

Insider’s Tip: Make sure you don’t throw out your cocktail napkin, because each one acts as your song request form.

Kristen Celins reports on The Reading Terminal: Food for the Brain

Since the early 1990s, the Reading Terminal Market has become one of Philadelphia’s most popular tourist destinations.

With so many vendors and tasty treats to try- the market can be a bit overwhelming for a new comer or even a Philadelphia veteran. The “Taste of Philadelphia” food tour rolls everything into one tour around the market that is sure to enlighten and make your taste buds water.  Carolyn Wyman, author of the ultimate “Great Philly Cheesesteak” book, leaves from the market information desk at 12th and Filbert every Wednesday and Saturday at 10am to reveal Philly’s favorite sandwiches, breakfast foods and snacks in the city.

 Wyman’s wealth of information about Philadelphia food history leaves no stone unturned and you even get to try a few of the Philadelphia staples along the way!

 At an affordable rate of $15.95 per adult and $8.95 for children this 75-minute tour won’t eat away at your wallet or your time- only your appetite!

Insider’s Tip: Plan to eat before or after the tour. Although there will be sampling, it is more of a talking than tasting tour!

Second City’s Lauren Ash Brunches at Bongo Room

After a long week of wise cracks and improvised jokes, Second City star Lauren Ash hits up the sinfully delicious brunch at Bongo Room. Lauren’s must-have is the Nestle Crunch Pancakes, with bananas and crumbled Nestle Crunch bars baked into the pancake. If that sounds decadent, take a look at the rest of the menu. The Chocolate Tower French Toast is a favorite, with chocolate French Toasts piled high and topped with bananas and both chocolate and white chocolate shavings. For those who want to stay away from the carbs- although this is the place to divulge- Bongo Room has a phenomenal Lump Crab Egg Benedict that’s cooked to perfection, and a lunch menu filled with American favorites like BLT’s and classic salads, but all served in over-the-top portions. Bongo Room proves that not everything is bigger in Texas, because brunch is massive at Bongo Room.

*** Lauren Ash is a Canadian-born comedian and actor at Chicago’s iconic Second City comedy club. Lauren has received rave reviews for her starring role in Second City’s Taming of the Flu.

Billiards, Bars and Darts at Rocket Bar

Sometimes there’s nothing more fun than hanging in someone’s pimped out basement, playing games, and hanging with friends. But when you’re in the city, basements are few and far between. That’s why many young Washingtonians head to Rocket Bar. With 17 HDTV’s, 7 pool tables, 6 shuffleboards, 6 darts, 2 jukeboxes, boardgames, and 3 full bars, Rocket Bar is the ultimate house party.

Zen Ultra Lounge: Sexy & Sleek

East meets West at club owner Kostas Kouremenos’ latest Denver venture: Zen Ultra Lounge. Giant buddhas and sleek red lighting provide the eastern organic ambiance, but there’s nothing zen about this place. Dj’s create killer re-mixes of the latest Lady GaGa hit, while a sexy crowd fill up the bottle service-only tables and darkly lit dance floor. The Asian infusion club is as impressive with its decor as it is with its hot clientele.

Madison is a Stylist’s Dream Where Celebs Get Their Looks

Many stores on Robertson can claim celebrity clientele, but not many stake claim as the hub for  expert stylists who are paid to dress the celebs. But Madison is the go-to store for the likes of Rachel Zoe and Jennifer Aniston’s stylist Jessica Pastor.

The sleek store looks like a showroom, with bare walls, ultra stylized mannequins and amazing collections of everything under the sun. Madison carries brand names like YSL and Marc Jacobs to up and coming LA designers, including some of Madison’s staff members! There are different shapes and sizes of shoes, sunglasses, jewelry (costume to real) as well as jeans, dresses, shirts and jackets. Madison covers every trend and every style, making it a favorite for those who want a one of a kind look, that will of course be copied by many others.

Drop Dead Gorgeous Erica Courtney

Whether it’s Oscars, premieres or MTV Movie Awards, it seems like every season is award season in Hollywood. That’s perfect for Erica Courtney, who is the red carpet go-to jewelry designer for stars Julia Roberts, Madonna, and Kate Beckinsale, among many others. Her one of a kind, interchangeable designs are the reason why elite stars trust Erica Courtney on some of the world’s biggest stages. For example, her earrings can be custom enhanced, because built into Erica’s design, stylists can add another large, drop stone with a single click of the clip.

Erica Courtney is not afraid to use colorful gemstones and each one is hand picked by the designer herself. Not to be out done in the bling department, her designs are covered in pave diamonds that add sophisticated sparkle to every piece. For those who are walking another very important “carpet,” a la the aisle, Erica Courtney just launched the “Gorgeous and Engaged” collection that keeps the red carpet wow factor, but adds the beauty and purity of wedding jewelry.

Urban Elegance & Very Happy Hours at Del Frisco’s Steakhouse

One of  NYC’s premiere steakhouses, Del Frisco’s stands out in a city filled with suits and their discerning steak tastes. Listed as one of the country’s top grossing restaurants, Del Frisco’s is located in the McGraw Hill building on 6th Avenue in, what NYMag claims, “is without question the most ubanely elegant steakhouse.”

The sophisticated, three-floor eatery is home to one of midtown’s most popular Happy Hours, filled with the beautiful and successful people in Midtown’s financial area. The wine list is one of the best in the city; the wine cellar and private party room is actually an old bank vault. For those martini lovers out there (this is NYC after all), Del Frisco’s offers an array of signature cocktails, including the popular “V.I.P,” which contains pineapple pieces soaked in Smirnoff Orange Vodka.

Now Del Frisco’s would not be a steakhouse without the steak, and the chefs here serve up some of the most mouth watering sirloins and filets. Regular customers almost instantly order the infamous crab cakes and freshly baked bread before biting into a juicy Double Eagle Strip Steak. Prices are reasonable for the large Manhattan portions. Reservations are not required, but recommended to be seated quickly.

Authentic French Cuisine & Parisian Bar at Z Cuisine

Chef Patrick Du Pays wanted to make a “home away from home” with Z Cuisine & A Cote Bar a Absinthe- and he has succeeded. The restaurant has been awarded the Westword Best of Denver five years in a row. Using local and organic ingredients, the food is exquisitely done to perfection including classic French dishes that every palate can enjoy.

Going beyond the average bistrot restaurant, Z Cuisine has an added bonus of the A Cote Bar a Absinthe right next door. Taste real (minus the wormwood) absinthe that was illegal in the States not so long ago. If you’re not interested in some sugar and green liquid, there’s also an incredible selection of wines and cocktails to start, or end, your evening.

Wisteria: Award Winning Newcomer

To call Wisteria simply a restaurant is not to do it justice. By essentially cleaning up the AOL Citysearch Best Of Awards in over a dozen categories, everything from Best People Watching to Best American Restaurant, Wisteria takes quality to another level.

Wisteria is housed in a century-old  building, but the cuisine is contemporary American with a Southern Twist. It serves Southern classics like Fried Chicken and Pork Tenderloin alongside a sophisticated and award-winning wine list. Its homey atmosphere in the historic Inman Park makes this a romantic dining location.

The menu changes seasonally so you can come back and enjoy the delicious food at Wisteria like it was the first time.

Nora’s First for Organic Eating

Usually trends are set in New York or Los Angeles, but the Nora Restaurant started one of the best culinary trends as of late: organic eating. Being the first certified organic restaurant in the United States, Nora’s knows how to cook with the heart and body in mind. Not only is the food good for you, it is also really good. The Nora Restaurant was voted’s Diners’ Choice Winner this year. At Nora’s, once you go organic, you can never go back.

Chops Lobster Bar is Famous for a Reason

Boasting beef and life-size-lobsters, this restaurant isn’t just a favorite of Atlanta’s locals; Chops ranks among the top ten steakhouses in the country. Savor their two to five pound lobsters, fish flown in daily, and the best USDA beef, while soaking in the Southern charm and warm ambiance. You’ll be licking your chops after tasting their famed surf and turf.

Hop City

Hop City is pushing the envelope for beer. Taking a cue from their beverage cousins, wine, Hop City organizes their beer based on based on style and not brewery. It’s the only beer store they, or we, know of that has taken this ingenious approach.It’s also the first store in Atlanta to specialize in craft beer.

Aside from its unique line-up style, Hop City is stocked with incredible beers from around the world. The store’s shelves hold 450 different types of beer including an impressive selection of 250 Belgian beers. The staff is very knowledgeable and helpful. Hop City is so passionate about educating their costumers that every Wednesday they hold a free beer tasting. Hop City is proudly elevating the experience of beer shopping, which is long overdue.

The Porter is a Pub With Beer on the Brain

Throwing its proverbial hat in the gastro-pub scene ring is The Porter Beer Bar. The Porter boasts a beer menu of some 300 bottles and 30 more on-tap. In the kitchen, headed by Nick Rutherford (formerly of Seeger’s, Quinones at Bacchanalia, and the Chocolate Bar), pub grub is served up with gourmet style. Try their legendary wings served three ways:  Chipotle BBQ, Traditional Buffalo and Teriyaki.

The Porter also has a “Hair of the Dog” brunch on weekends featuring peach-covered waffles, biscuits and  sausage gravy, and a smoked salmon scramble.

The Porter Bar is located in the heart of Little Five Points.

Visit for more information.

Where Fulfilling Comfort Food Comes to Fruition


Fruition was named one of America’s Top Ten New Restaurants in 2007. Chef Alex Seidel didn’t create a new twist on asian fusion cuisine or use some molecular gastronomy tricks up his sleeve, he just made some seriously good comfort food. Chicken soup with homemade noodles, and even warm apple pie have never tasted so good than at Fruition. Enjoy a properly cooked meal that leaves you smiling from the stomach to the mouth.

Sushi Samba Dromo Fuses Peru, Japan and Brazil

The eye-popping, mouth-watering Sushi Samba Dromo takes fusion to a whole new level with an inspired threesome of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian tastes. You’ll feel like a world traveler in the hip, lounge-like dining area and bar. For the full global impact, be sure to sample the fusion drinks like Caipirinhas and specialty Sambatinis, Latin-inspired sushi a la the BoBo  Brazil Roll with kobe beef and the amazing meats of the “Rio Grande” Churrasco (Brazilian Barbecue).

Diner by Day, Silk City by Night

By day it’s a simple diner, serving up simple fare like salads and burgers, but by night, Silk City Lounge transforms into a raging club, filled with hipsters and young professionals looking for a little fun. The calendar is packed nightly with the hottest DJs and electronica/indie rock bands on the scene. DJ Sammy Slice and Cool Hand Luke keep the party hopping every Thursday night at this jet-set cool bar, but DJ Deejay continues to give them a run for their money every Sunday.

Hang with Politicians at Bullfeathers

Sure, fun and politicians may not seem like they go together, but at Bullfeathers they do. Serving the House of Representatives and “friends” since 1980, Bullfeathers knows how to have a laugh. After all, it’s named after the phrase President Teddy Roosevelt used to deal with “frustrating situations” and to call out other people’s, well, bull…feathers.

Happy hour is always hot at the 40 foot bar and enjoy one of the best burgers in town with that beer. When the weather’s nice, make sure to take advantage of the patio and relax with the savvy Washingtonian crowd.

Ted’s Montana Grill’s Bison Burgers Can’t Be Beat

If you’re looking for a new taste on the traditional burger, there’s no better place to satisfy a juicy burger craving than at Ted’s Montana Grill. Founded by media guru Ted Turner and famed restaurateur George McKerrow, Jr.,  Ted’s Montana Grill found a niche in the American grill market and it stuck: Bison Burgers. Repeatedly acclaimed as one of the best burgers in cities across the US, New York’s urbanites love Ted’s home range twist on American classics as a pre-theater must or relaxed dinner.

Ted’s Montana Grill hasn’t become a restaurant empire just for its most popular item, it also does all the American classics with style. Try freshly cut french fries, hand-dipped salt and pepper onion rings, pecan crusted salmon and steaks. Located right in Rockefeller Center, Ted’s Montana Grill proves hearty American food shines in the heart of Manhattan.

Newsroom Cafe: The Other Robertson Hotspot

The Ivy may get all the paparazzi on Robertson, but Newsroom Cafe is where you’ll see the real LA locals and low-key celebs. Although it’s based around healthy, vegetarian-friendly dishes, Newsroom Cafe serves up burgers and wine and alcohol like the best of them. With a perfect location- complete with a people-watching patio, it is packed for lunch and dinner and at night, it turns into a hot bar scene. Newsroom is known for its freshly made juices, Veggie Burger, and, of course, a large magazine rack and wifi. This is the perfect place to stop for a break from all the trendy boutique shopping.

New Director, New Sound at LA Philharmonic

The Los Angeles Philharmonic has a new director, 28 year-old Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel, who is already wowing A-list Californian crowds and reaching the top of the classical Billboard charts. Dudamel began his tenure in October and in his first concert, he received a standing ovation before he had even begun. He has an incredible energy and artistry that has made him one of the most sought-after conductors around the world. His work is so incredible that TIME magazine named him one of the most influential people of 2009.

Make sure to check out Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic. There are always a many different types of concerts performed year-round, from holiday themed performances to jazz bands to beautiful classical music, for every musical taste.

Music Wonderland at Disney Concert Hall

The LA Philharmonic is proud to call this sophisticated concert hall its home.  With the partnership of Lillian Disney (wife of Walt Disney) and famed architect Frank Gehry, the Disney Concert Hall is an incredible landmark fit for the artistic Los Angeles crowd.  It’s designed to be one of the most acoustically sophisticated venues with an intimate, circular seating. The concert hall also has two outdoor amphitheaters and an inspiring garden.

This internationally recognized architectural masterpiece is the perfect venue for an unforgettable event.

Haunting Dallas Holocaust Museum

The Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center For Education & Tolerance is a up close and personal tribute to the memory of the millions who died during the Holocaust with survivors as tour guides and authentic artifacts the moment you walk in.  One part authentic museum, one part memorial, this center, in the heart of free America, capturePicture 10s the horrors of the Holocaust.

A Holocaust museum may seem a bit odd in the middle of Texas, thousands of miles away from the concentration camps in Europe, but this museum is the result of the hard work and dedication by a group of survivors. In 1977 a group of 125 Holocaust survivors from North Texas created the Holocaust Survivors in Dallas and in 1984 the Dallas Holocaust Museum came into fruition.

The museum entrance contains a railway car–an actual boxcar donated by the National Belgian Railways – used to transport Jews and other “undesirables” to concentration camps.  The tours, sometimes led by Holocaust survivors, take you through the museum and an entire room dedicated to the memorial of the millions who lost their lives in the Holocaust.

Piaget is Swiss for Perfectly Crafted Jewelry and Watches

When people hear the name Piaget, many think of the Swiss watchmakers who have been designing and crafting exceptional timepieces since 1874. But celebs like Anne Hathaway and Eva Longoria know Piaget for more than just keeping time. Longoria even had Piaget design her wedding band. And who isn’t going to gravitate to this necklace of cascading diamonds. Looking for color? Giant gemstone rings are about as hot as it gets!

Luxury Landmark Stanley Korshak

With worldwide recognition, Stanley Korshak is a department store like none other. Boasting an exciting and unique selection of both runway designs and wardrobe basics, Stanley Korshak showcases the work of established designers and fresh talent- something unique for most department stores. Soon-to-be brides will revel at the bridal boutique’s exquisite selection and the professional and unparalleled service will make your shopping excursion a quality experience.

The Not So Tiny Tiny Jewel Box

Looking for some sparkle? The Tiny Jewel Box offers three floors of precious gemstones, one-of-a-kind engagement rings, and designer jewelry from the likes of David Yurman and John Hardy. With DC’s largest collection of antique and vintage jewelry collection, it lives up to its motto of, “If it’s not special, it’s not here.”

While the first two floors are clearly female focused with wedding rings and designer names everywhere, an entire third floor is dedicated to men and their affinity toward watches. Everyone can come out a winner at Tiny Jewel Box, although we’ll bet the majority of the time will be spent on different floors!

Beauty & Rock ‘n Roll at Red Rocks Amphitheatre

The Red Rocks Amphitheatre is not only a concert venue, its unique geological formations make it one of nature’s wonders where the seating is carved from Colorado’s stunning red rocks.  Catch up on the history of the red rocks at the visitor’s center and discover ancient dinosaur trails in the surrounding area. And of course, check the event listings at Red Rocks where bands like The Fray perform for thousands. This is a unique venue for concerts under the stars as well as breathtaking, natural views.

Fab Vintage Finds at Lost + Found

There are many vintage shops, but a good one really stands out in the crowd. Look no further than Lost + Found in Philadelphia. This boutique sells gently used clothing at incredible prices that have made the likes of Lucky Magazine fans. Run by a stylish mother and daughter duo, they’ve mixed in the vintage with the new so you can walk away with an entire outfit that you just can’t find anywhere else.

75 Years of Excellence at SFMOMA

The SFMOMA is one of the most inventive museums of modern and contemporary art. Celebrating its 75th anniversary with a brand new rooftop garden, it has something for every taste: traditional paintings and sculptures to new-age mixed media. The brilliant collection features contemporary greats such as Henri Matisse,  Alfred Stieglitz, Marcel Duchamp, and of course, the infamous Jackson Pollock.

For art enthusiasts or simply anyone who recognizes and welcomes greatness born in our time, SFMOMA offers not only traveling exhibitions of modern artists, but also artist lectures, curator talks, film screenings, workshops and more.

Complete with an architectural model of Eliot Noye’s Westinghouse 1964 New York World’s Fair Pavilion, as seen in the Men in Black movie, and Andy Warhol’s Red Liz, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is an excellent and eye-opening museum.

Gold Dust Lounge’s Music is Money

With the ceiling murals and walls lined with framed currency, the Gold Dust Lounge looked like a Wild West saloon. Don’t let the decor fool you, this historic Dixieland bar was famous for the many Jazz artists who have played there over the years.

San Francisco’s Gold Dust Lounge, in a fight for its life since octogenarian owners Jim and Tasios Bovis were hit with an eviction notice last year, served last call at its beloved Union Square digs and announced an upcoming move to the tourist heavy Fisherman’s Wharf.

The Gold Dust Lounge has reopened and you’re invited! We packed up the pieces in Union Square and moved to Fisherman’s Wharf on the Barbary Coast.

We brought Bing Crosby’s cherub mural on the ceiling, the antique brass lights, the Bovis Family paintings, the tables, the gold filigree mirrors, the old wood bar, the red velvet booths, Herb Caen’s stool, his Vitamin V, the band, the bartenders, waitresses, the Miner 49er, the swinging saloon doors, that familiar marquee -all we’re missing is you! Come have a drink as we kick off more good times for years to come! Help us make the new Gold Dust a home.

Capogiro Gelato Rivals That From Italia

In Italian, capogiro means dizziness from something wonderful. The heavenly treats at Capogiro Gelato are beyond that!  The exquisitely crafted flavor combinations are quite simply out of this world, with the New York Times raving that there’s nothing subtle about Capogiro’s gelato.  Everything at this artisanal shop is handmade and they use fresh ingredients for the creamy treats, meaning that the seasonally driven menu is always changing based on the harvest. This treat rivals the gelato and sorbetto in Italy-  and there’s even been rumors that Capogiro is better.

Flip Burger Boutique

Flip Burger Boutique is bringing fine dining…to burgers! Conceived by Top Chef alum Richard Blais, he’s offering up the beloved classics but also elevating the concept to a whole new level. Set inside a playful yet modern atmosphere, his unique spin on the traditional burger includes soon-to-be new faves like the pork belly and cheese. Sides range from good ‘ol fries to beer and cheddar soup! And be sure to wash it all down with the truly unique milkshakes – the burnt marshmallow is a keeper! Check out for more information.

Bowling Gets Classy at Bowlmor Lanes

Bowling has received a makeover thanks to Bowlmor Lanes. The bowling lanes that look more like a chic nightclub will change your perceptions of the old sport, where you can just as easily sip a martini and chat up the high-scorers as you can get down and dirty and watch a game.  300 Dallas offers all the technology and amenities you wouldn’t expect from a night out at the bowl-o-rama: state-of-the-art lanes, extra-large video screens, restaurants, billiards tables and an arcade will make sure you don’t strike-out no matter how bad your game. And if you’re not the best bowler, no worries, you can hit the gutter ball without anyone knowing at the semi-private lanes.

Distrito Serves Modern & Creative Mexican

13533_194338173155_178371218155_3869631_1576475_nDistrito serves modern Mexican food in a fun and quirky environment – Pepto-Bismol pink walls and VW bugs as booths to be exact. Located in University City among three of Philadelphia’s major universities, Distrito is always packed with the young and young at heart that are ready to have a good time. And Chef Jose Garces (of Top Chef and Philadelphia restaurant fame) is ready all the time for the taco-loving crowds: Distrito is open for brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, lunch 5 days a week and dinner 7 nights a week.

The first floor bar and tequila lounge serves a fun cantina menu, full of all different types of tacos, enchiladas and especialidades, then when served alongside a house specialty margarita, you are good to go. For the heavier appetite or a night out with friends, it’s best to get a table and be prepared to share. All of the dishes are based on traditional Mexican ingredients but modernized – like the Fish Tacos with yellowtail, chipotle remoulade, avocado, red cabbage and lime juice, or the Skirt Steak Nachos with refried beans and queso mixto.

Tasting menus are also always available, with tequila pairings, which are not recommended for the faint of heart.

The Ever Expanding California Science Center

The California Science Center is the West Coast’s largest hands-on science center- and is only growing- with additions being scheduled for 2010 and beyond. From daredevil activities like bicycling a nearly 50 foot tight rope to playing with cuddly chicks, the ScienCenter, as it’s creatively spelled, has a myriad of exhibits for every age and personality. Permanent exhibits include the Air and Space Gallery that has artifacts and hands-on activities on the exploration of the final frontier, World of Life, which explores all things living- from single cell amoeba to elephants and Creative World that’s about all things technology. If you get tired from running around all day, sit back and relax at an entertaining film at the Center’s IMAX Theater.

Heart of History at Penn’s View Hotel

The Penn’s View Hotel, named after William Penn, is a boutique hotel nestled among the history of Old City. The intimate getaway is also home of the authentic trattoria Ristorante Panorama and Il Bar, which serves over 800 different wines a year and boasts an extensive Proprietor’s Reserve List of impressive wines by the bottle.Picture 9

The staff is well known for its generosity and kindness, and the continental breakfast is overflowing with pastries, Belgian waffles and fresh-squeezed juices. The hotel is historic, but certainly not archaic – amenities like free WiFi throughout the hotel, convenient gas fireplaces and enormous jacuzzi tubs are available in all of the rooms. You can also enjoy a view of the Ben Franklin Bridge and the Delaware waterfront.

The Penn’s View Hotel provides all the amenities you could want, but if you do decide to venture out you are blocks from Independence Mall, The Liberty Bell, and an extensive amount of art galleries and boutiques.

Get a taste of Paris at Bistro Niko

bistro nikoBuckhead needed a casual, French-inspired café and Atlanta’s legendary Buckhead Life Group answered the call with Bistro Niko.

Housed in the luxurious Sovereign, home to both residential and commercial tenants, Bistro Niko is an elegant and easygoing affair. The swanky bar is located on the Peachtree Street side of things but there’s plenty of room for dining on the other side of the clock which centers the beautifully tiled restaurant. The bold splashes of red throughout, not to mention the fancy ceiling, are definitely eye-catching but a restaurant cannot thrive on style alone.

A tin of Icelandic caviar over brioche is totally recommended and surprisingly affordable. For lunch, the Croque “Monsieur,” grilled ham with gruyere cheese, is a popular selection while the Tartare De Boeuf (classic steak tartare) plays well at any meal. The ample selection of more than 50 beers, many from Belgium, is surprisingly refreshing. For more delicate palates, there is the signature Specialite Le St. Germain (St. Germain with champagne) as well as an extensive wine list.

For those who can’t rendezvous in Paris, Bistro Niko is a Southern interpretation fully worthy of the “ooh la la(s)” and “oui, oui(s)” it has received.

Country Feel with Downtown Amenities at The Morris House

Picture 39The Morris House has the luxury of a downtown boutique hotel with the quaintness of a bed and breakfast. Located on Society Hill, this hotel has fifteen exclusive rooms, each decorated in its own individual fashion. With its outdoor garden and cozy charm, this place could easily be mistaken for a countryside B&B, however, most farm ladies wouldn’t offer Godiva Chocolates or Norwegian Voss water upon your arrival.

Guests can enjoy not only a continental breakfast, but also afternoon tea, which are both included in the room rate. If the hotel’s pleasant, historic charm keeps you in for the night, try the Morris House’s M Restaurant, which offers a delicious extensive lunch and dinner menu and a reasonable prix fixe. Between the beautiful atmosphere and accommodations, this is an amazing place for any wedding or party, which you can easily book online.

Whiskey Blue Is the Place To Feel Like A Rock Star

whiskey blueThere’s no better place to feel like a rock star than Whiskey Blue. Of course the weekends are maddening but the weekdays aren’t too shabby either. Wednesday typically attracts the business crowd but there’s nothing boring about making dollars.

As a hotel guest, it’s easy to access the rooftop party from within the hotel but it might be worth entering it from the street just to ride up in elevator with the couch and cross the bridge to excitement.

The bar is a stylish slither so it’s only natural to meet people. Small bites like the yummy tuna spring rolls and lamb sausage pizza from Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Market downstairs are available until 10pm. Move past the bar and the space opens up slightly. Wood-paneled walls and yacht-club inspired furnishings create a warm and intimate vibe and then, the DJ is barely noticeable all the way in the back. There’s also seating parallel to the bar, hence the slithering gap.

Now if a city view and fresh air is a must, take the right just past the bar, through a glass door and behold a clear view of the city. To really soak in the al fresco vibe, though, go to the other side and stay awhile. Cabanas divided by a mini-garden of sorts, well shrubbery and other trappings of nature, work for all seasons thanks to heat lamps.

Drinks are seasonal and pretty standard for most bars in the Gerber Group stable. The Bubblicious, made with bubblegum vodka, is super fun. Mojitos come in multiple flavors, including strawberry, blueberry, mangomint and ginger. And, there’s lots of whiskey too.

It’s a nonstop party at Whiskey Blue. No wonder the beautiful people can’t leave it alone.

The W Buckhead Pops for Atlanta

Sexy, fun, and vibrant but definitely respectable enough to get some business done, the W Buckhead stands out from Atlanta’s other Ws while still retaining its local charm. Simultaneously retro and modern chic, the lobby has many floral details that recall the 1950s/1960swithout any hint of stuffiness though.

Rooms are typically cozy but there are eleven suites for larger ambitions. Of them, the Extreme Wow Suite is all that and more. Spacious beyond imagination, with an eclectically, stylish pop that would make Andy Warhol proud, there’s a half bath as well as a full bath designed for two. Dreamy beds are a W standard and so are the ever nice plasma screens and the uber-fab bliss products.

Staying in the room is so boring so get fit at Sweat (where cable goes well with treadmills), cool off at Wet (the adorable pool overlooking Peachtree) and dance it off at Whiskey Blue (their elevated, rooftop club). Hungry? Just dine at Market, a delicious part of the Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s culinary empire, or lounge at Living Room.

Actually, if clothes were not required, the Living Room might rival the rooms. It has plasma TVs plus comfortably oversized chairs and nice couches which help getting neighborly a breeze. Music by a jazz trio or DJ isn’t uncommon either. And, then, there are nibbles like the truffle pizza and lamb chops from Market plus great drinks like the truly fantastic ginger margarita.

It’s pop life for sure at the W Buckhead.w buckhead 1083904

3. 10 Premieres at Lincoln Center Festival July 7-25

Picture 11The goal of the Lincoln Center Festival is to bring to audiences something they could not see anywhere else in the world. In a city as culturally crazy as New York, this is a lofty task, but this festival always delivers- and this year is no exception. In 18 days there will be 10 premieres and debuts, and 45 performances from 12 countries in over seven venues across New York City.

The Lincoln Center Festival kicks off with the U.S. premiere of Musashi, a lavish production based on a legendary samurai story. Another highlight includes the works of Edgard Varese by Maestro Alan Gilbert and The New York Philharmonic. This festival is heralded by nearly every New York critic as one of summer’s highlights.

Stir it Up

A bar is definitely cool when the only way you can find it is because of the popping music and large crowd gathered outside. Stir, Picture 48located in a tiny alley off of Rittenhouse Square, may be small and unassuming from the outside, but inside it’s a swank and super hip lounge made for partying.

With arguably the cheapest, strongest drinks you can get in Philly, Stir offers your favorite classic cocktails along with ever changing specialty cocktails for the more adventurous palettes (How does “Sticky Fingers” or “The Angry Beaver” sound to you??). And make sure to come from 5-7 daily to get $2 off that interesting drink of yours. Keep in mind that just because this is a gay bar, it doesn’t mean that everyone isn’t welcome; Stir packs in an awesome crowd every night of all the people Philadelphia has to offer.

Billy Dec – Let this nightlife Guru enlighten your night

Let Billy Dec, the nightlife Guru himself, tell you what you need to know about Chicago. Billy Dec is the CEO and Founder of Rockit Ranch Productions, Chicago’s premier restaurant and entertainment development company. The company owns the new hotspot Sunda, The Underground club, and the award-winning Rockit Bar & Grill.

1. Magnolia Films at the Modern July 2-25

Most people take it for granted that movies are art, but thankfully the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth doesn’t. Magnolia at the Modern is an ongoing series featuring critically acclaimed films from one of the most prominent independent film studios, Magnolia. Picture 1

In July, enjoy screenings of Micmacs, a David-and-Goliath tale where a man tries to destroy weapons manufacturers; Women Without Men, which is an adaptation of a novel chronicling the lives of four Iranian women during the summer of 1953; the newly released Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky that shows that passionate affair of two of the twentieth century’s icons; and City of your Final Destination, starring Anthony Hopkins and Laura Linney, of a young Iranian-American academic who seeks permission to write a biography of a Uruguayan novelist. The screenings are at various time on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

1. Avatar Among Screenings Under the Stars July 1-31

Picture 8In most cities, the outdoor summer movie series generally consist of a Blockbuster or two hidden among classics or obscure films. This is not the case at the Screenings Under the Stars at Penn’s Landing. The month of July starts off with a bang with the #1 movie of all time, Avatar, and continues with The Blind Side, The Secret Life of Bees and last year’s summer blockbuster Star Trek. In a beautiful setting right on the Delaware River, the experience is surreal as the large screen projects incredible movies, and the darkness of the theater is emulated by the darkness of the night sky. The screenings start every Thursday night at 8:30pm; make sure to check the website’s calendar for the schedule.

1. Jazz Journeys at Georgia Aquarium July 2-31

The Picture 17Georgia Aquarium combines the sounds of jazz and awesome sea creatures for the coolest event this summer. Every Friday night, kick back after your long week as some of Atlanta’s best jazz musicians play smooth tunes all night long. You can take in the sights or enjoy up-front VIP seating with Wolfgang Puck’s specially prepared meals. The event is free with aquarium admission, and with drink specials during the entire event, your wallet won’t take a hit.

1. King Tut Debuts at Denver Art Museum July 1-31

Picture 19After making stops in London, New York, and LA, the riches found in King Tut’s tomb are finally coming to the Denver Art Museum. Featuring over 100 artifacts, like the gold sandals his mummy wore and the jars that held his internal organs, the exhibit has received rave reviews from audiences everywhere. Don’t forget to take the audio tour narrated by Indiana Jones himself, Harrison Ford, and catch the 3D film revealing the secrets of the mummies for the full archaeological experience. This is the first time King Tut has made an appearance in Denver, so there’s no doubt that getting tickets in advance might be a good idea.

1. Independence Day in the Capital July 4

Picture 37The capital city is the place to be on the 4th of July. Celebrations run all day throughout the city, beginning with activities at the White House Visitor Center early in the morning. Following that, don’t miss the parade of the military and marching bands down Constitution Ave or the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival that features dance performances as well as a large selection of international foods. You won’t want to miss the live concert by the National Symphony Orchestra and several pop artists on the West Lawn of the Capitol building. The performance is followed by a spectacular fireworks show against the city’s skyline that will certainly warm your hearts and inspire patriotic feelings. A busy day of celebrations to commemorate the birth of our nation!

1. Celebrate the Late Dennis Hopper at MoCA July 11-31

Picture 28Perhaps the best way to mourn the recent loss of acclaimed actor Dennis Hopper is to celebrate and acquaint ourselves with his encompassing oeuvre of work as an artist. Double Standard is the first museum show to highlight his achievements in art; his inter-disciplinary work will certainly have something for everybody. Ranging from sculpture to photography, his pieces are highly influenced by pop art, even featuring some early photos of his friend Andy Warhol.

As if there weren’t enough star power involved, renowned filmmaker/artist Julian Schnabel curates the show and it has already drawn much controversy. Whether you like it or not, this is sure to be the talk of the town.

1. Summer Nights at the ICA July 8-29

Picture 4This summer, instead of going out to a club, Bostonians in the know head over to the coolest museum in Boston: the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA). Heralded by the New York Times as one of the summer hotspots in Boston, every Thursday (and sometimes Wednesday) night there will be live music and performances.

In the ICA’s beautiful waterfront location- with floor to ceiling glass windows adding to the gorgeous ambiance- hear catchy Latin pop and folk music from Tais Alvarenga, old-school urban blues from the Pinchback Blues, and ancient Greece’s Sappho’s poetry meets interpretative dance at the Co Lab: Anne Carson and Rashaun Mitchell. Most performances are free, so Summer Nights at the ICA is a great way to cap off a beautiful summer night.

1. King Tut Debuts in Times Square July 1-31

It hasking tut been 30 years since the famous boy king has made his presence felt in New York City, and King Tut NYC is quite a debut. Located in the Discovery Times Square Exposition- NYC’s first large-scale exhibition center, King Tut NYC will feature 10 galleries and more than 130 artifacts from the world of pharaohs.

Highlights include King Tutanhkhamun’s iconic golden canopic coffinette and crown as well as an entire gallery that will for the first time showcase the latest DNA studies and forensic findings, like exactly how he died.

1. Culinary Fireworks at Taste of Chicago July 1-4

taste of chicagoIt’s hands down the biggest event of the summer in Chicago. The Taste of Chicago takes over Grant Park year after year featuring samples from hundreds of restaurants in what many deem as a culinary capital in America. Specials guests like culinary rock stars Giada De Laurentiis and Mario Batali will be there as well as an entire rock pavilion, the Patrillo Music Shell, who will have the likes of Rob Thomas, Gavin Rossdale, Broadway in Chicago and the Steve Miller Band on its stage. This festival goes through the July 4th long weekend, where it ends with a bang- literally. A magnificent fireworks display from Navy Pier, North and South sides converge on Grant Park making this event the kick-off to a fantastic Chicago summer.

1. Indulge During Miami Spa Month July 1-31

Picture 25Everybody knows that Miami is the place to go for the best spa treatments, and in celebration, several spas are offering special deals for the entire month of July. After a long day of fun in the sun or a long night partying, enjoy some of the exclusive manicures, pedicures and massages at discount prices. Even spas like the ones in the Standard Hotel and the Doral Resort, which have been ranked as one of the “Best Spas in America” by Travel + Leisure magazine, are taking part in the offers. So lay back, close your eyes, and indulge your body.

2. Screen on the Green on the National Mall July 12-26

Picture 36Real life is rarely like life on the big screen, but the return of Washington DC’s outdoor film series may be one of those times. Saved by the donations of local residents, this year’s program is especially sweet. It all starts on July 12th with the charm of 007 in Goldfinger followed by Oscar winner The Goodbye Girl, and concludes at the end of the month with an examination of justice in 12 Angry Men. The films screen every Monday night in July and begin around dusk. So grab a blanket and some snacks, and take part in your own Hollywood ending with a loved one.

2. Free Concerts Galore in Central Park July 1-31

Anyone who lives in NYC knows that Central Park is the place to go for amazing free concerts in the summer.  From SummerStage to GMA’s Summer Concert Series, there’s a plethora of options both day and night in Central Park.central park summer concerts

In July, the SummerStage will feature the highly anticipated performances The Metropolitan Opera: Summer Recital Series as well as the critically acclaimed Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Company. The SummerStage also plays host to Comedy Central’s The Daily Show in July as world music like Istanbulive II.

GMA’s star-studded stage lives up to its reputation this month with performances from Mary J. Blige, The GO-GO’s, Sheryl Crow and the Black Eyed Peas. All these concerts are free and open to the public, but there is always a long, long wait, so plan to get there early… very early.

2. Downtown Sound is Back! July 5-26

Picture 6This popular free series, Downtown Sound: New Music Mondays, is back for its second summer. Situated in the must-see Millennium Park, every Monday at 6:30pm discover new, up and coming bands from cutting-edge indie rock stars to pop veterans. The concerts are all free, and in July the mainstage will be host to The Thermals with Disappears, Caribou with The Budos Band, Kid Sister with Konono No. 1, and Naomi Shelton and the Gospel Queens with Bomba Estereo. The ten-concert series ends in July, so make sure to check it out before it’s too late!

2. Cinespia Cemetery Screenings July 3-31

Picture 30In the land of Hollywood, anything is possible, like viewing the films of past directors and actors… with them. Every Saturday night and some Sundays through July, flicks will be shown at the Forever Hollywood Cemetery, where the likes of director Cecil B. Demille, actress Marion Davies, and producer, actor, director Douglas Fairbanks Sr. are buried. Live DJs spinning before and after the screenings makes this all-night affair even more irresistible. The one-of-a-kind setting has made it a popular tradition amongst Angelenos, and the space does fill up. So get there early with food and drinks before settling back with the stars.

2. Mercedes-Benz Swimwear Fashion Week July 15-19

Picture 26As if Miami wasn’t hot enough, the sexiest models and swimwear will be in town for the skin-revealing sister of the Berlin and New York fashion weeks. Featuring over 20 of the best swimwear designers from Parke and Ronen to Trina Turk, you can bet that fashion royalty will be there in the front rows, and journalists right outside.

While you must be invited to see the shows inside the hotel Raleigh, you will most likely catch glimpses of the gorgeous supermodels right outside on the beach. At night, you can celebrate with them at parties all over town, where you won’t need a pass.

2. Blockbusters for Free at Flicks on 5th July 7-21

Picture 18Summer is known for major Hollywood blockbusters, and in Atlanta you can see the past year’s biggest movies outside for free at Flicks on 5th Street. In July, you’ll be able to see the Best Picture Oscar Winner The Hurt Locker, the family friendly Fantastic Mr. Fox, and the hilarious Hot Tub Time Machine. The movies are every Wednesday and start around nightfall, which is approximately 9pm. So bring your family or loved ones, grab some free popcorn at the event, and head over for a free summer movie.

2. Denver Hosts World at Biennial of the Americas July 1-31

Denver is playing host to the world all this month Picture 20for the Biennial of the Americas. Artists and leaders from North, Central, and South America will be here to show off their ideas and works, as they take part in this celebration of the diversity of the region. From a rock and roll musical, a workshop on playing Caribbean drums,  a breakdance competition in Skyline Park, to The Cell (pictured), the first state-of-the-art exhibit on global terrorism, nearly every major museum, cultural center and public area will have something dedicated specifically to this event. The best part is that many of these programs are free! Check the website for information on all the various events and their locations.

2. Summer Series at the Ritzy Boston Harbor Hotel July 1-31

No one puts on seasonal festivals like theboston harbor summer series landmark Boston Harbor Hotel. Nearly every single night in the summer offers a different performance and theme for travelers and Bostonians alike to enjoy. On Tuesday nights enjoy the Summer Soul, where various R&B bands and artists sing classics from Marvin Gay to Gladys Knight live under the stars. On Wednesday it’s Timeless Tunes, featuring classic music entertainment from the 60’s all the way to the 90’s. On Thursday it’s Blue Barge, where you guessed it, local and national blues artists sing their souls out on stage. And on Friday, it’s Movies by Moonlight, where guests can enjoy movies from classics like The Maltese Falcon, All About Eve, to Raiders of the Lost Ark, while enjoying the award-winning cuisine from BHH’s Chef Daniel Bruce.

3. Cocktails in the Garden July 1-31

cocktails in the gardenEvery Thursday night enjoy a refreshing mojito while surrounded by even more delicious leaves at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Even with the added liquid enjoyment, the Atlanta Botanical Garden is breathtaking in the evening. Enjoy a beautiful nighttime skyline on the Canopy Walk, sample delicious dishes and live chef demos at the Edible Garden Outdoor Kitchen, or relax with the sound of the falling water at the Cascades Garden. Oh, and not to mention, every month there’s a new theme at the Garden and live DJs spin tunes to create the mood of that theme.  This is the perfect way to get in the Atlanta sightseeing, while having a night out on the town.

3. Shakespeare by the Sea July 2-31

Picture 31Two of the best aspects of LA- the warm weather and theater scene- combine in Shakespeare by the Sea’s summer program. Throughout the whole summer, the comedy Twelfth Night and the tragedy Julius Caesar will be put on in number of parks close to the ocean for free. In July, coming from audiences and critics’ rave reviews in New York, Chicago, and Austin, Impro Theater will be putting on Shakespeare Unscripted. Using your suggestions and Shakespearean characters, every performance is unique and makes for a fun and creative night out. Located a few blocks from the beach, it’s the perfect end to day out in the sun and surf.

3. Join Artists at Here/Not There at MCA July 6-31

Picture 7Here/Not There is not your average art exhibit. For the past three years during the month of July, the Museum of Contemporary Art has been host to a unique art exhibit where the viewers and guests are encouraged to break that “don’t touch” rule and get involved in the making of a piece of art. Every Tuesday at 7pm, a different artist presents a piece and guests and viewers participate in performing and creating works of art.

If you can’t make it to the Tuesday creation, remnants and documentation generated by the performance are on exhibit in the gallery throughout the rest of the week. One part performance, one part visual art, this popular series creates a whole new experience in enjoying art at a renowned museum.

3. Celebrate Independence Day in Miami July 2-4

Picture 27If you’ve never celebrated the 4th of July on the beach, then Miami is the place to do it. It’s an all weekend celebration all over town, with parades, live music, fireworks, and of course, the best after-parties in the country.

During the day, Key Biscayne will be holding their annual parade, while the Homestead Sports Complex will be hosting a car show, rides, and live music all day. Once it gets dark, don’t miss the amazing fireworks show from Bayfront Park that can be seen from all over downtown.

After that, the parties continue with internationally renowned DJs, who will be playing all over town, like Erick Morillo at Liv Nightclub.

3. Summer Art Studio at ICA July 1-31

Picture 9Sure, most children get the summer off and go to various art and crafts camps, so the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia made its own adult version. Summer Studio with Anthony Campuzano transforms the museum’s second floor gallery into a freeform art school and studio, which is also free and open to the public! Not only will this studio provide nouveau students with instruction in many art disciplines, there will be various professors, mentors and peers as special guests to the classes.  Make sure to check the website for all times and class details, including what classes have special guests.

3. Theatre Reigns at Capital Fringe Festival July 8-25

Picture 35The international festival for independent and experimental theatre artists is arriving in Washington DC for its fifth year. Enjoy some of the best theatre – outside the mainstream – from around the world for cheap prices. Featuring a variety of venues like abandoned warehouses and stores, you won’t want to miss out on these controversial, unconventional and interactive performances. You can even meet the artists in workshops that range from basic theatre to an intro to beatboxing. Whatever your interest is, you are bound to find something you like, with over 140 performances in two weeks. Local restaurants and bars are also taking part in this celebration with discounts on meals and drinks before and after shows. Check the website for participating locations.

3. Berklee Summer Concert Series Takes Over Boston July 1-31

Picture 5Berklee is one of the most prestigious music schools in the country, with famous alumni like John Mayer. This summer, at basically every major juncture in Boston there is a Berklee musician scheduled to perform. From downtown’s Prudential Center to Cambridge’s Kendall Square to the ICA and even Spectacle Island in Boston Harbor, you can hear up-and-coming artists and bands performing everything from Latin to blues to jazz to acoustic guitar. Most performances are free, so make sure to look at the website for times and locations.

3. Mile High Movies in Skyline Park July 1-31

Picture 21Summer is the season of warm weather and great movies, and Denver’s terrific outdoor screenings combine them both. After a long day walking around downtown, settle back under the stars with hits like the classic Field of Dreams or the hilarious Kung-Fu Panda. The films are shown on a large screen in Skyline Park every Saturday at dusk in July and continue through August. The Denver Theater District provides live entertainment before and after every screening, so you can even make a whole night of it. So grab a blanket and a loved one, some great treats from the local businesses around the park, and soak in the great views and films.

3. Young Frankenstein Comes to Life July 1-25

Picture 34After a successful run in New York, the Young Frankenstein musical re-imagining of Mel Brooks’ classic spoof film has been on a non-stop US tour and is being reanimated in San Francisco. The beloved characters Igor, Dr. Frankenstein, Inga, and of course, the monster are all here, alive and singing. The catchy songs, amazing sets, and the entertaining dancing will make for a fun and unforgettable night. To top it all off, it is at the beautiful, art deco Golden Gate Theatre, whose prime location offers several pre-theatre dinner choices.

3. Modern Dance Festival at the Modern July 10-25

Picture 2For the seventh year in a row, Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth teams up with the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth for the Modern Dance Festival at the Modern. With dance performances to lectures to site-specific events and even screenings of films from the Dance On Camera Festival, dance is taken to the next level with so many artistic venues for expression. The festival kicks off with the CD/FW Dance Exchange: A Choreographer’s Showcase, featuring special guest Dan Halquiet who will perform choreography from Bill Evans (who has his own workshop and lecture a few days later). It’s 15 days of free events, making this festival repeatedly one of the most popular.

Chris’ Jazz Cafe – A Philly Institution

18843_249426678362_156002958362_3094860_813431_nIt’s impossible not to feel like a total smoooooth operator in a place like Chris’ Jazz Café. The dimly lit bar with live jazz playing at a perfect volume creates a straight-up cool atmosphere for relaxing and enjoying some music.

The bar offers less big-name brews and instead has an awesome assortment of local Pennsylvania breweries on draft. Though many go to Chris’ solely for the drinks and music, the full lunch and dinner menu has new American cuisine to munch on while you listen to the tunes. There is a cover charge of $5-$20 to hear the featured bands, just make sure to check out the café’s website ahead of time for the band schedule and cover charge prices.

Tony’s Pizza Napoletana Serves World Champion Slices

Home to a large Italian-American crowd, any old bloke will tell you that North Beach is the neighborhood to be in if you’re looking for a scintillating slice of San Francisco’s finest pizza. But with more than a dozen pizzerias within a five block 1radius, how can you tell the run-of-the-mill from the cream-of-the-crop? Leave it to the professionals. Tony’s Pizza Napoletana is the dough and marinara of nine-time World Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani — the first American and non-Neapolitan to ever claim the prize for “Best Pizza Margherita.”

With ingredients imported from Napoli each week alongside produce from local organic farmers and artisan cheese makers, Tony handcrafts his award-winning pizzas in the heart of Little Italy from the same 900-degree, wood-burning oven that catapulted him to fame. Just steps away from Washington Square Park, the full-service restaurant turns out a limit of 73 celebrated medium Margherita crusts a day, fresh-as-can-be ingredients permitting. If you’re not one of the chosen ones, you can take your pick of more than 25 other varieties, from truffle to quail egg and speck to the New Jersey-style “Original Tomato Pie.” If baked dough isn’t your cup of tea, praiseworthy antipasti, pastas, inslata, and dolci also await.

Posh and Indulgent at Barclay Prime

When you order a cut of beef at most steakhouses, the server just asks, “baked potato or mashed?” but when the server at Barclay Prime also gives you a selection of German and Japanese knives in order to cut your prime beef, you know you’re getting a unique and glamorous twist on the traditional steakhouse. Picture 45

Set inside the chic 1929 Barclay building in Rittenhouse Square, this new Stephen Starr masterpiece is as aged and rich as the top quality NY strip being served. Before diving in to your meal, have a martini- Mad Men style- in the mahogany, 1960’s boutique-inspired bar. After, indulge with traditional steakhouse favorites, from every cut of beef imaginable to decadent a la carte sides such as truffle mac & cheese. Yummy seafood is offered for the less carnivorous ones, along with some contemporary American treats- the Kobe Beef Sliders being a favorite. If indulgence and luxury is what you’re seeking for the evening, you will find this posh spot completely worth the trip!

Betsy Ross House Showcases a US Leading Lady

Picture 8Betsy Ross was one pretty powerful woman in the making of our country, she is responsible for creating that beautiful work of art known as the American flag, and seeing her home puts it all into perspective. The Betsy Ross House in the Old City section of Philadelphia is bustling with the sights and sounds of the 18th century and is decorated in the style, adorned with artifacts from the era.

The home is open for guided tours year round, showing the workroom, two bedrooms, and kitchen of the most famous seamstress in our country. Throughout the summer months there’s something for the whole family to enjoy with historical plays, magic shows, music, and appearances by Betsy and other revolutionary icons of the time. Betsy Ross is even buried beneath the giant elm and sycamore trees that shade the courtyard. The house is now over 250 years old and is managed by a private nonprofit organization, Historic Philadelphia, Inc.

It’s Comedy Central at Cobb’s Comedy Club

When it comes to comedy clubs, the question to ask isn’t Cobbsemptyroom“What?” or “Where?” it’s “Who?” In any case, Cobb’s Comedy Club has you covered. In its 25th year, the North Beach venue plays host to the finest funny men and women working today. From Jerry Seinfeld and Dave Chappelle to Ellen DeGeneres and Margaret Cho, Cobb’s rotating cast of headliners are Leno and Letterman regulars, many with a comedy series of their own. Let’s put it this way: a celebrated stand-up doesn’t step foot out of SFO without first making an appearance on this stage.

If you’re hungry for more than laughter, the 400-seat venue offers a full dinner menu of classic American pub food, like crispy fried calamari, marinated chicken sandwiches, and of course, a Cobb’s chopped salad. Just remember to come thirsty: with a two-beverage minimum, they mean business. Sobreity is no laughing matter.

The Contemporary Jewish Museum’s Ever-Changing Exhibits

As a non-collecting institution, the Contemporary Jewish Museum’s ever-changing exhibition program embraces a range of artistic disciplines. From Andy Warhol’s pantheon of Jewish portraits to a retrospective of Where the Wild Things Are author Picture 85Maurice Sendak’s career, each presentation is timely and relevant, fostering a dialogue between museum-goers of all faiths. Partnering with national and international cultural institutions, the Museum showcases contemporary art, historical objects, film and music, literary readings, and other live performances that pertain to Judaism as both a religion and culture.

Founded in 1984, the Contemporary Jewish Museum opened its doors as the “Jewish Community Museum” in San Francisco’s Financial District with a goal of introducing audiences of all backgrounds to contemporary perspectives on Jewish culture, history, art and ideas. After much success, ten years later, the Museum hired acclaimed Polish-American architect Daniel Libeskind — who won the competition to reconstruct Manhattan’s World Trade Center site — to re-envision a 1907 landmark in SoMa as its new home. Reopened in 2008 with a vibrant blue metallic steel roof surging from a Beaux Arts brick façade, the dynamic 63,000-square-foot structure marries historical and contemporary architecture.

Steps away from the SFMOMA and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, it’s a can’t-miss for culture vultures.

Sleek Grand Opening of Le Meridien

Picture 46What’s black and white and red all over? Philadelphia’s Le Meridien, of course! This sleek spot in the heart of Philadelphia’s business district is a new product from the luxurious Le Meridien hotels. This hot and posh hotel group has over 120 hotels in 50 different countries, so if anyone knows hotels, it’s these guys. In keeping with its worldwide tradition of upscale accommodations, Le Meridien has 10 stories of stylish rooms, a Grand Ballroom fit for weddings and meetings looking over Philadelphia’s magestic City Hall, and a chic bar and brasserie, Amuse, which offers traditional French bistro fare.

All the comfort, plus the award-winning concierge staff will guarantee that you have a great stay while in Philadelphia. Even though the place has it all, if you ever do happen to want to leave, it is less than a block away from the Convention Center and other Philly sightseeing to satisfy every need.

NEUE Galerie’s Scott Gutterman Relaxes at Prospect Park

Believe it or not, Central Park is not the only park in New York City. Brooklyn native and Deputy Director Scott Gutterman of one of New York’s coolest museums, the NEUE Galerie, knows that Brooklyn’s Prospect Park is the hidden gem for a perfect urban escape.

“As much as I love Central Park,” Scott told citybuzz, “I think Prospect Park is a fantastic place. They have amazing concerts in the summer, lots of beautiful meadows, and it’s a little more rolling and winding so it gets a lot of respect from the city.” Picture 6

Located in the heart of New York’s most populated borough- yep, Brooklyn- Prospect Park is the place where true locals go to hang out. Designed by the same architects who created Central Park, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, is bigger in some ways than its more famous counterpart: a 90-acre Long Meadow, 60-acre lake and Brooklyn’s only forest. But that’s not all, Prospect Park has the nation’s first urban Audobon Center, a zoo and every summer there’s the Celebrate Brooklyn! Performing Arts Center, on top of year round tennis, playgrounds, and twilight tours that are like an urban safari, but with wine and cheese! Of course, Prospect Park is also great for a romantic stroll and the perfect excuse to get out of Manhattan and visit- for most New Yorkers- the real New York City.

*** Scott Gutterman is the Deputy Director of the NEUE Galerie on Museum Mile near Central Park. NEUE Galerie focuses on early twentieth-century German and Austrian art, including famed works from Gustav Klimt, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and Otto Dix.

A Touch of France at Bistrot la Minette

If you’ve never experienced France, try the next best thing and look no further than Bistrot la Minette. Even the most experienced French culinary aficionados will be impressed by the amazingly authentic creations by chef Peter Woosley, cooking up Picture 44classic bistro dishes, from Œuf du Pêcheur (mussels with a poached egg and tarragon cream sauce) and Escargots, to Roasted Chicken and Steak au Poivre. The equally divine dessert selection is the perfect end to an evening, with tartes and pastries galore (Oh la la!).

On a nice night, sit outside in the Garden Courtyard, whose dazzling European feel not only takes you away from the buzz of the city, but also won Best Outdoor Dining in 2009 from Philadelphia Magazine. Better yet, go on a Monday or Thursday night, when the Bistrot shows French films as you wine and dine in the courtyard. For larger parties, reservations can be made for the rustic farm-inspired private dining room, offering a separate menu for up to 20 guests. Could this place be more charming?

Franklin Square Boasts Beauty and History

Picture 41William Penn laid out 7.5 acres of land in the heart of Philadelphia back in 1682, and he would probably be very proud of what it has become by 2010! Located in Historic Philadelphia, Franklin Square has been completely renovated, and is now open as an amazing spot for families or anyone who wants to see a little more green in their busy day.

There’s a mini golf course and a carousel for kids (or the kid in you), with a Stephen Starr snack shack, Squareburger, selling hot dogs, fries, burgers, and milkshakes made with one of Pennsylvania’s claim-to-fame items, Tasty Kakes! Besides these activities, the Square is fit for strolling, with interspersed benches and walking paths leading straight to the piece de resistance, the water fountain. Built in 1838, the fountain is a huge marble masterpiece, placed right smack in the center of the park for your viewing pleasure.

Broadway’s Best at The Orpheum Theatre

Take one glimpse at the majestic carved doors of San Francisco’s Orpheum Theatre and you’ll see the sparkle of an architectural gem. Designed in the 1920s by renowned theater architect Picture 56B. Marcus Priteca as a showcase for the silent films and vaudeville productions of impresario Alexander Pantages, the elaborate Spanish-style Civic Center cathedral boasts all the ingredients required to cook up an evening of glitz and entertainment. From the baroque, vaulted ceilings to walls brimming with folkloric lion figurines, the palatial venue is well-deserved of its designation as a San Francisco Historical Landmark.

Though the theater’s delicate balconies endured years as a first-run movie house, it’s been reinvigorated by some of the nation’s most acclaimed Broadway shows. These days its rich red carpets and chairs accommodate crowds of musical enthusiasts for the box office record-breaker Wicked, but this beautiful building has also set the stage for Phantom of the Opera, Cats, Rent and The Lion King. No doubt, it has a long history to come as host to the most prized performances.

1. Culinary Fireworks at Taste of Chicago June 25-30

Picture 98It’s hands down the biggest event of the summer in Chicago. The Taste of Chicago takes over Grant Park year after year featuring samples from hundreds of restaurants in what many deem as a culinary capital in America. Specials guests like culinary rock stars Giada De Laurentiis and Mario Batali will be there as well as an entire rock pavilion, the Patrillo Music Shell, who will have the likes of Rob Thomas, Gavin Rossdale, Broadway in Chicago and the Steve Miller Band on its stage. This festival goes through the July 4th long weekend, where it ends with a bang- literally. A magnificent fireworks display from Navy Pier, North and South sides converge on Grant Park making this event the kick-off to a fantastic Chicago summer.

1. Madama Butterfly Kicks Off Summer Opera Series June 26-30

Picture 105Puccini’s classic Madama Butterfly kicks off Central City Opera’s Colorado Summer Musical Festival. It has a reputation as one of the premiere summer musical festivals in the state, which is a reputation that’s well deserved. Showing performances amongst Colorado’s beautiful mountain setting, Central City Opera still keeps the quality of its performances with internationally acclaimed artists, visually stimulating sets, decadent costumes and a professional live orchestra. Other summer headliners include Orpheus in the Underworld and Three Decembers, along with many other short festival extras and events.

1. Shakespeare in the Park June 16-30

One of the best things about summer-Picture 101besides the good weather- is being able to enjoy amazing theater in the great outdoors. Dallas puts on a fabulous Shakespeare in the Park Summer Series that begins in June and goes through to July. In June, though, you have the choice of two great Shakespearean plays. The first to open the series is Cymbeline, a tragedy/romance loosely based on the legends of the early Celtic British King Cunobelinus. Later in the month, and on through July, is one of Shakespeare’s earliest plays, Comedy of Errors. Moving into a different direction, this is short and slapstick happy in a story that deals with mistaken identities and a flurry of puns and wordplay.

1. Summer Series at the Ritzy Boston Harbor Hotel June 17-30

Picture 95No one puts on seasonal events like the landmark Boston Harbor Hotel. Nearly every single night in the summer offers a different performance and theme for travelers and Bostonians alike to enjoy. On Tuesday nights enjoy the Summer Soul, where various R&B bands and artists sing classics from Marvin Gaye to Gladys Knight live under the stars. On Wednesday it’s Timeless Tunes, featuring classic music entertainment from the 60’s all the way to the 90’s. On Thursday it’s Blue Barge, where you guessed it, local and national blues artists sing their souls out on stage. And on Friday, it’s Movies by Moonlight, where guests can enjoy movies from classics from The Maltese Falcon, All About Eve to Raiders of the Lost Ark, while enjoying the award-winning cuisine from BHH’s Chef Daniel Bruce.

1. Blockbusters for Free on Flicks on 5th June 9-23

Picture 93Summer is known for major Hollywood blockbusters, and in Atlanta you can see the past year’s biggest movies outside for free at Flicks on 5th Street. In June you’ll be able to see the action-packed Sherlock Holmes, the hilarious The Hangover and Oscar award-winning The Blind Side, and still more major movies continue into July. The movies are every Wednesday and start around nightfall, which is approximately 9pm. So cuddle up with your honey and grab some appropriately priced candy from the store- or a free popcorn bag for viewing under the stars- and head over to a free fun summer event.

2. Photography Exposed at the Denver Art Museum June 1-30

Picture 104The Denver Art Museum’s newest exhibition digs deep into its art pockets with Exposure: Photos from the Vault. It literally is just that, featuring over 50 of the best photographs from the nearly 7,000 (!) piece collection to choose from. Highlights include iconic images by Ansel Adams and Chuck Close alongside recent acquisitions from up-and-comers Petah Coyne and Shirin Neshat. Not only is this exhibit showing the best of DAM’s photography collection, it also includes many works that have yet to go on view at the landmark museum. Check out the beautiful and the quizzical images all through June.

2. CSO Closes with 3 Week Beethoven Festival June 2-20

Picture 99While other major symphony orchestras may close its season with a grand finale, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra closes with a three-week homage to the greatest composer of all-time, Beethoven. There are a whopping 28 events packed into these 18 days, that feature symphonies led by principal conductor Bernard Haitink (who is also celebrating his four-year tenure as principal conductor of the CSO), pre-concert chamber music that is free to the public, film screenings and more. What makes this event so special and unique is that while Beethoven’s music is often performed, it is performed individually, and this is a rare occasion where the familiar and less familiar works will be performed in a complete cycle.

2. Allure of the Automobile Extended! June 1-27

Extended through June by popular demand, The Allure of the Automobile at the High Museum of Art presents 18 of the world’s rarest and most brilliantly conceived cars from the 1930s to the mid-1960s, including masterpieces by Bugatti,Picture 25 Duesenberg, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Ferrari. The exhibition traces the evolution of the motorcar, examining the contrasts between European and American design, and significant changes in automotive styling and engineering before and after World War II.

The featured automobiles have won awards at prestigious events such as the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, broken records on racetracks, and were previously owned by such noted car enthusiasts as Clark Gable and Steve McQueen.

2. Thousands Come out for Cambridge River Fest June 5

Picture 97Every year the Cambridge River Festival attracts nearly 200,000 people to the quaint area just outside of Boston. Now in its 31st year, the Cambridge River Festival features jazz, folk, Latin and world music performances as well as dancers, art demonstrations and family art-making activities. All this music and fun can work up an appetite, and to feed the thousands that came down, there are over 100 specialty food purveyors. Best of all, this event is free and is on whether it’s raining or shining.

2. Jazz Around Town at DC Jazz Festival June 1-13

Picture 109With over 100 performances in over a dozen places in the city, it’s safe to say the DC Jazz Festival is taking over the nation’s capital for the first two weeks of June. This is DC’s largest music festival and one of the most highly-anticipated events of the summer. Venues go from famous jazz joints like Georgetown’s Blues Alley to clubs like Tryst. Other events within the festival include the all-day jazz extravaganza- that’s free- at the Lisner Auditorium as well as the Jazz ‘N Families Fun Day and Jazz Under the Stars.

3. Take a Cruise With the Summer Sailstice June 20-21

Picture 85San Francisco celebrates this holiday that is actually a global holiday- the Summer Sailstice. Bringing everyone together who loves water and wind in the hair on a beautiful sailboat, this is the event to celebrate that summer sunshine and proximity to a beautiful bay. Gathering everyone onto Treasure Island, the fellow sailors will enjoy live music, big boat races, boatbuilding contests and looking for buried treasures for the kids. Enjoy a weekend of sail and the sand for the Summer Sailstice.

3. First U.S. Luc Tymans Exhibit at DMA Begins June 6

Picture 103Jointly organized by the prestigious San Francisco MOMA and the Wexner Center, Belgian artist Luc Tymans will be showing his first U.S. retrospective work at the Dallas Museum of Art starting on June 6, 2010. The New York Times has already raved about this exhibit. Luc Tymans is known for his deceptively simple figurative paintings that evoke strong thoughts and discussions in its simplicity. The exhibition will go in chronological order of his career, highlighting the fluid progression of his famous painting style. Enjoy it in Dallas before the exhibit heads over to the SFMOMA.

3. Join the Tradition at Capitol Hill People’s Fair June 5-6

Picture 106The aptly named People’s Fair really has become a favorite summer tradition in Denver, even receiving a “Top of the Rocky” Award by the Rocky Mountain News Readers. The CHUN Capitol Hill People’s Fair celebrates the diverse Denver urban community with a premiere arts and crafts festival, delicious culinary bites, entertainment from talented musicians, and other things to do with the family. It’s a great way to spend time with friends and family- and best of all, it’s all for free.

3. Cocktails in the Garden June 1-30

Picture 94Every Thursday night enjoy a refreshing mojito while surrounded by even more delicious leaves at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Even with the added liquid enjoyment, the Atlanta Botanical Garden is breathtaking in the evening. Enjoy a beautiful nighttime skyline on the Canopy Walk, sample delicious dishes and live chef demos at the Edible Garden Outdoor Kitchen, or relax with the sound of the falling water at the Cascades Garden. Oh, and not to mention, every month there’s a new theme at the Garden and live DJs spin tunes to create the mood of that theme.  This is the perfect way to get in that Atlanta sightseeing, all while having a night out on the town, too.

3. Dragons Down the Charles River June 12-13

Picture 96It’s a 2300 year Asian tradition, but in Boston the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival takes on a life of its own. The nation’s longest running Dragon Boat Festival features killer races down the Charles River, but for those who are along for the ride, so to speak, there’s plenty to do onshore. In Cambridge there are arts and crafts demonstrations and tons of tasty Asian food. And anyone can come by and join in on the weekend of fun, because it’s free admission to this festival. For those looking for an extra special experience, buy a ticket with a group of friends for the 2010 Festival Banquet at the Heila Moon Restaurant and get into the spirit before the day of the big race.

3. India v. USA at Polo Cup on National Mall June 11-12

Picture 112Believe it or not, America’s Polo Cup World Championships, held in the heart of DC on the National Mall, is one of the world’s premier televised charity polo sporting events and the largest one of its kind in the DC area. Every year Team USA goes up against a different nation, and this year it’s India. But there’s a whole lot more than one game; this is a weekend extravaganza. The celebration kicks off on June 11th with an exclusive VIP party. On Saturday, the Championship and Fashion Show begin with a Bollywood style introduction that’s answered by an American rock anthem. The game is always intense both on and off the field, as the men duke it out with their horses while the women face off in a fashion hat frenzy to win the title of Best Hat and Best Dressed. It’s a chic European event in the heart of our nation’s Capital.

3. Proving Blues Capital Status at Blues Fest June 11-13

Chicago may be most known as the Picture 100Windy City, but in the Summer it’s got the Blues- big time. The Chicago Blues Festival is not only one of the largest free blues festivals in the world, it’s also one of the largest of all of Chicago’s Music Festivals. In three days covering six stages, there will be well over a half a million blues fans, proving that Chicago is in fact the Blues Capital of the World. Past performers have included greats like B.B. King, Ray Charles, Bonnie Raitt and the late Bo Diddley.

Restaurateur Nick Varano Hangs at The Bristol Lounge

Nick Varano is the owner of some of Boston’s best restaurants (Strega’s was voted Boston’s Most Coveted Table- especially considering the likes of Sopranos cast members are regulars), but when it comes to relaxing, he always comes to the Four Season’s Bristol Lounge.

Known as “Boston’s living room,” the Bristol Lounge is most certainly the living room to some of Boston’s most sociable and influential people, like Nick Varano. “It’s a great place for not just Picture 115relaxation, but conversation as well,” Nick told citybuzz.  Offering floor-to-ceiling views of the beautiful Boston Public Garden or sitting next to the fireplace during Boston’s cold winters, the Bristol Lounge makes the average lounge look stressful compared to this relaxing oasis.

On top of the incredible atmosphere is an even better menu, most notably made famous by the Bristol Burger. Using seasonal ingredients for the New American cuisine, the Bristol Lounge has a special for almost every moment of the day. Power breakfasts are followed by power lunches, then there’s the Boston tradition of a ritzy Afternoon Tea that turns into live jazz music and proper New England seafood that goes well into the evening.

“It’s the perfect atmosphere for both business and pleasure,” Nick says. “I can always count on going to the Bristol Lounge and running into a friend, colleague or even a family member… but with me, everyone is family.” Spoken like a true king of hospitality.

Click here for more information.

*** Nick Varano is the owner of Boston’s Strega, Nico and Nick Varano’s Famous Deli Restaurants. Recently, he opened the new Bostonian nightlife hotspot: The Ocean Club nightclub.

World Class PCMS for $23 or Less

The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society takes pride in bringing local, national and international stars of the music world to stages throughout Philadelphia for affordable prices, and we’re talking world-class acts for $23 or less. Picture 30

PCMS presents more than 60 chamber music concerts, instrumental and vocal recitals, jazz and special programs per season with some of the most prestigious musicians in the world, like the Tokyo Quartet and violinist Midori. As a resident company of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, PCMS performs mainly in the Perelman Theater on Broad Street, but also presents in other venues across the city. PCMS also collaborates regularly with prominent cultural institutions, like Juilliard, and presents education programs to help bring classical music into the lives of the younger generation.

Whether you’re in the mood for piano, a string quartet or a stellar tenor, there will be something on the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society season that will delight you…and it will cost less than that sirloin you ordered the night before.

Yank Sing Delivers Dim Sum on the Ritz

Picture 61If the hustle and the bustle of Chinatown’s to-go only dim sum spots makes you feel “lost in translation,” but you still have a taste for the Orient, Yank Sing might be just the thing. One of only five restaurants designated “an American classic” with a 2009 James Beard Foundation award — the Oscars of the culinary world — this delightful dining spot is the definitive dim sum house.

With unflinching, rapid-fire servings of an exceptional variety of fried and steamed small plates wheeled around in carefully choreographed carts, your only worry will be to know when to stop. Luckily, you can get comfortable sitting back to overeat and taste your terrific tea at a luxe table dressed in white linens — a far cry from the flickering overhead lights and suspended poultry of Stockton Street. Better yet, with prime locations in both the Embarcadero and the Financial District, your hotel suite or business meeting may be just a hobble, skip or jump away.

Nob Hill’s Amélie Wins With Wine and Ambiance

When in San Francisco, wine and dine as the San Franciscans do. With its sleek, lacquered, red bar and dimly-lit, wine-bottle-shaped sconces, French-owned Aamelie sfmélie is a modern wine lounge with worldly flair. Its extensive wine list globe-trots from California to Europe to South America, and pairs off perfectly with delectable cheese plates, charcuterie, and favorites like Raviole du Royan — stuffed ravioli with chanterelles and Gruyère — and the indulgent grenadine caramelized onion flatbreads.

Get cozy on vintage theater seats with a glass of wine for a romantic rendezvous, mingle with chic locals at the bar, or sit down with a booth full of friends at this lively Nob Hill spot. Whether you go stag or you arrive with company, the engaging and lively international staff — all expert sommeliers — are reason enough to stop in for a wine and cheese pairing, and perhaps, sharpen your Française.

Thread Lounge: Discounted Designers to New Labels

“Where did you find that- and for what price?” will soon be familiar words if you put Russian Hill’s Thread Lounge into your shopping rotation. Opened by fashion industry veteran Colleen Smith, the Polk Street shop sells high-end sample pieces and excess stock from both Picture 19independent designers and sartorial titans at greatly discounted prices. With 300 labels in the loft-like space and apparel and accessories for men, women and children, it’s a one-stop shop for all seasons and occasions. From chic yoga gear to statement-making evening wear, Thread Lounge Designer Sample Sales has you covered.

You’ll certainly be charmed by the price tags on designs by the likes of Vivienne Westwood, Trina Turk, and Joe’s Jeans, but this boutique’s biggest asset is the attire from lesser-known, up-and-coming designers, like Julie Brown and Nougat of London. Smith’s extensive stable of local and international labels makes for a wardrobe of seemingly one-of-a-kind wears that will no doubt become a talking point. Whether you pick up the most becoming blue jeans or a head-turning party dress, you’ll spur curiosity and envy in all who pass you by.

Chanel, Halston, Dior at Rare Vintage

All New Yorkers covet vintage clothing, because everyone wants that one-of-a-kind piece to stand out in the crowd. Rare Vintage is the answer to that fashion holy grail: an entire store dedicated to hard to find, high-end designers and pieces that are simply no longer around today. From a red silk Balenciaga 1960 coat- worn by royalty!- to a limited edition Hermes ‘Security’ Kelly Bag to an owl head shaped minaudiere that looks like it came straight out of a Sex and the City episode, Rare Vintage is filled with gems from the icons of the fashion world past and present. Owner Juliana Cairone is a master of finding these rare pieces from all over the world, making frequent scouring trips to Paris and Italy, and luckily bringing back all her finds to the heart of Midtown Manhattan for fashion hungry shoppers.

Carnegie Hall: The World’s Premier Stage

Practice, practice, practice – and a lot of talent – is the only way onto the world’s most prized stage, Carnegie Hall, but for those who enjoy listening to world class talent, buying a ticket to one of the amazing concerts is equally as impressive. Pianist Sergei Rachmaninoff made his debut on Carnegie Hall’s main stage, as well as hosting performances from cellist Yo-Yo Ma, opera legends Maria Callas and Luciano Pavarotti, conductor Leonard Bernstein to jazz artists Ella Fitzgerald. With its largest hall, the Isaac Stern Auditorium, open since 1891, Picture 7Carnegie Hall is the premier classical music performance space for legends of yesterday and today.

The Isaac Stern Auditorium is what comes to mind when one thinks of what a classical concert auditorium should look like. Beautiful, with a striking curvilinear design and five levels of seating that holds up to 2,804 people, its renowned acoustics is one of the reasons why Carnegie Hall has been a favorite for audiences and performers for over a century. There are also smaller halls that are ideal for intimate performances, recitals, chamber music concerts, discussions, master classes and more.

With over 200 concerts a year, Carnegie Hall is the place to go for classical music as well as performances from popular artists, like country singer Reba McEntire and Broadway star Patti LuPone. There are also major international and national festivals, like JapanNYC led by Artistic Director Seiji Ozawa, that take place throughout the year, offering concerts as well as films, lectures, readings, museum exhibits, and more.

Barbounia’s Where the Mediterranean Meets NYC

If you’re looking for an authentic Mediterranean restaurant with marvelous prices and a fantastic atmosphere, you’re only a cab ride away. Nestled in Gramercy, Barbounia allows its customers a glimpse into a Mediterranean dream. The restaurant is dimly lit and is decorated with towering pillars, ornate arches, and lavish floral arrangements.

The menu boasts many flavorful dishes from the region, specifically the countries of  Greece, Morocco, southern France and southern Italy. Such dishes include the Lamb Terracotta, which is Lamb Kebabs served with pepper chutney, pistachios, and tahini wrapped in an oven baked flat bread, and their pan-seared Yellow Fin Tuna served with creamed potatoes and vegetables. While enjoying their meal, customers can also sip on some of the many cocktails offered, including the Barbounia-tini made with fresh aloe-vera juice and foam. But that’s not all, Barbounia also offers a champagne brunch on Sunday where you can get a never ending flow of champagne cocktails for only $12!

The Story of US! At the National Constitution Center

No trip to Philadelphia is complete without experiencing a bit of US history. Sure, maybe the last time a museum trip was on the agenda was back in fifth grade, but The National Constitution Center, newly minted in 2000, will not bring back bad memories of elementary school trips with your smelly teacher Mrs. Fernberger. Quite to the contrary, the National Constitution Center will remind you why its so great to live in the United States.Picture 9

The National Constitution Center tells the story of us – as in you, me, and the United States, and the importance of the Constitution in our every day lives. One of the most intriguing exhibits is Signer’s Hall, a room featuring life-sized, cast bronze sculptures of the 39 signers of the Constitution and the three dissenters. Wandering among the statues and taking pictures with famous signers like George Washington and Ben Franklin gives visitors that eerie experience of being a part of history.

The Center is always hosting national exhibits, guest speakers and national events, so be sure to check their website before visiting. The lobby is spectacular and often hosts special events, like when Bono was awarded the Philadelphia Liberty Medal. The expansive space features 85,000 square feet of beautiful limestone from Indiana.

Owner/Curator Amanda Fernandez-Leon Swears by The Restaurant at the Setai

“Picking a favorite restaurant in Miami is like picking your favorite star in the sky: an impossible feat,” Amanda Fernandez-Leon, owner and curator of Calix Gustav Gallery, told citybuzz. “But there is one restaurant that truly never fails- this is not just a restaurant, it’s The Restaurant at the Setai.”

Located in arguably the best hotel in Miami, Picture 22The Restaurant at the Setai is pan asian cuisine that exceeds all expectations and prior experiences. As a Miami trendsetter and owner of one of Miami’s most avant-garde galleries, Amanda has a spot-on taste for what’s cooking in Miami, and especially for what’s sizzlin’ at The Restaurant.

“The menu is massive and intimidating for newcomers,” Amanda warns, but follow her favorites and you’re sure to have as fabulous experience as she does. “The Pecking Duck Salad with the sweetest shallots you’ll ever taste; nothing says Dim Sum like the melt-in-your-mouth Steamed Barbecue Pork Buns; the Pork Belly with dreamy Kimchi is unreal; the Lamb Curry is my pick for my last meal on Earth; and [finally] the Tandoor Jumbo Tiger Shrimp, so succulent it’s naughty,” Amanda recommends. With food that delicious and with so many options, she adds this advice, “Ladies, I don’t recommend wearing a tight dress.” Point taken.

*** Amanda Fernandez-Leon is the owner and curator of one of Miami’s most avant-garde galleries, the new Calix Gustav Gallery, in the trendy Wynwood Arts District. With an unbelievable taste for the unique, she has also established herself as a trendsetter in both the culinary and fashion worlds. Always decked to the nines, Amanda can be found giving tours at her gallery as well as dining at restaurants that are on the verge of becoming the next big thing.

Boyds – Dressing Philadelphia for 70 Years

Boyds is a clothing store in the heart of Rittenhouse Square that opened seventy years ago and continues to offer the finest and most exclusive clothing from around the world to its customers. Built Picture 8on a firm foundation of customer service and attention to detail, Boyds is the go-to place for the finest clothing in Philadelphia.

Inside the mood is classy, with Oriental-style rugs, high ceilings, thick Greek columns and detailed crown moldings. Boyds has a men’s and women’s department that offers the best designers available, from Catherine Malandrino to Armani, Hugo Boss and Alberta Ferretti. Accessories, Boyds has it covered, with Manolo Blahnik’s straight out of SATC and classy handbags that beat the trend, like Lanvin and Gucci.  The services department is unparalleled, offering free alterations from the best European tailors state-side.

Don’t worry about figuring out how to get there – Boyds has always offered free valet parking for store visitors. And if you get hungry while you shop, pop into Boyds’ cafe Raw for a soup and salad or some refreshing sushi. Because there is nothing wrong with a wasabi lobster roll on the side of your Ike Behar.

Tavern on Camac: Nightclub, Piano Bar and Restaurant in One

Philadelphia is known for pioneering on many fronts throughoutPicture 10 history, and not to be forgotten is the evolution of Philly’s Gayborhood and acceptance of gay rights in its community. The Tavern on Camac in Washington Square West is one of the premiere LGBT spots in the city and is proudly open 7 nights a week to anyone and everyone.

The Tavern on Camac (T.O.C.) is basically divided into three parts – the restaurant, the piano bar and the nightclub. The restaurant, called Terra, serves up new American cuisine with everything from arctic char to sliders and quesadillas. Ascend Lounge is the dance party upstairs, and the only thing you will be wishing is that the dance floor was a bit bigger to accommodate all the fabulous dancers.

Which leaves us with the Pièce de résistance – the piano bar. Whether you’re singing Britney Spears or the best of My Fair Lady, you’ll feel like you’re a part of the best choir ever to sing together. And whether it’s the stiff drinks talking or just the nostalgia from the piano riffs, you’ll be having a great time no matter what.

Lacroix’s Haute Cuisine in Beautiful Rittenhouse Square

Every now and then you have one of those moments where you think “I don’tPicture 13 know what on Earth I just ate, but it was delicious and I want more!” And even when they tell you what it is (kampachi who?) just smile, nod and be thankful that the glorious morsel is in your mouth! Lacroix provides exotic flavor blends that will wow even the most adventurous of palates in one of the most luxurious and beautiful settings in Philadelphia.

Overlooking the haute Rittenhouse Square, Lacroix provides a serene loft above the bustle of the streets. The staff is exceptional, as is the sommelier (handsome and French, just the way he should be).

It seems futile to suggest entrees because everything will leave you speechless and thrilled. If you’re not in town for dinner, the brunch is legendary. From the towering raw bar with exceptional caviar selections to the crisped corn beef and potato hash with, ahem, poached egg on top (awesome!) all bellies will leave full and delighted.

The Grand, Palatial Warner Theatre

Picture 22The Warner Theatre is one of Washington’s most beautiful historic venues with its crystal chandeliers and intricate, decadent interior facade. Originally built as a movie palace in the 1920’s, walking in the doors makes one nostalgic for the glory of the entertainment of last century. But once inside, the Warner Theatre is incredibly up-to-date with performances from comedians like Jimmy Fallon, musicians such as Norah Jones, Broadway shows and much more.

If you want to take the experience of Warner Theatre on another level, opt for the Grand Suite seating and view the performance in true style. Check the Warner Theatre’s website for a complete list of all the upcoming performances.

The Warner Theatre makes the experience of any entertainment performance that much more grand and special.

An Urban Oasis at the Denver Botanic Gardens

Picture 11Looking for a little peace and quiet from the sounds of the city? The 23-acre urban oasis that is the hip, wi-fi equipped Denver Botanic Gardens at York Street is a great place to think, write, read, and enjoy spectacular plants, flowers, and shrubs from all over the world.

Despite the mile high climate, altitude and geography presenting unique challenges to the horticulturists, the Denver Botanic Gardens is one of the top-ranked gardens in the United States. There are innovative designs with drought tolerant plants that showcase native and adapted plants. Highlights include the city’s first publicly accessible green roof, where visitors can literally stand on top of the future of innovation in green energy.

Whether it’s roses or chrysanthemums that tickle your nose, the Denver Botanic Gardens has three sites and changing events and exhibits that keep people coming back through the seasons.

Lobster With a Side of Gorgeous Views at the Washington Harbour

Picture 10Sick of being inside all day? Take a walk along the public boardwalk and soak in the gorgeous views of the Potomac River. With plenty of shops and restaurants, the recently renovated Washington Harbour offers everything for a relaxing Sunday afternoon to a romantic Friday evening.

The various restaurants range from American grill to Mexican, but they are primarily known for seafood. Many are located along the water, letting diners enjoy the views with their food. Not only are the waters beautiful, but the fountains, docked boats and backdrop of the Kennedy Center make the views truly spectacular, especially at night. There are also many bars along the water, offering a unique nightlife experience.

Sightseeing cruises depart here as well, making it easy to get inspired and explore more of Washington. The crowd is always bustling at this historic Georgetown hotspot so you’re sure to meet new friends or run into some old ones.

1. Wine and More at Toast of the Town May 24

Picture 26Taking place in one of the premier wine and food capitals of the world, the Toast of the Town wine tasting festival is the place to go for wine enthusiasts or those just looking for a good time. There are over 500 world-class wines for people to taste. There is also music paired with gourmet dishes from New York’s top restaurants. The festival is organized by, which means many of the knowledgeable editors and writers of the site will be mingling and wine-tasting with the crowd. From wine experts to novices, everyone here will be enjoying the spectacular evening.

1. Faneuil Hall Street Performers Festival May 29-31

30356975.StreetPerformerSure, there’s a street festival nearly everyday at the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, featuring world class jugglers and entertainment. But once a year Faneuil Hall holds a special free, three-day festival celebrating the street performers who perform there daily- and this year they’re pulling out all the stops for the Faneuil Hall Marketplace Street Performer’s 25th Annual Festival.

This year will feature Inca Son, world-renowned performers who will share the sights, sounds and culture of Peru and Latin America, with the audience as they headline three-dozen musical and variety acts. The festival will also feature Wacky Chad; Jungle Jim’s Wild Balloon Show; Colin the Quirky juggling bagpiper comic; and the USA Breakdancers.

During the festival the Faneuil Hall Marketplace will be open for business as usual, with all shops, restaurants and venues remaining open.

1. Rock Out at DC Chili Cook-Off May 22

Every May dozens of the best chili cooks in the DC area Picture 18will make their yearly pilgrimage to the DC 101 Chili Cook-Off to compete for the title of Best Chili in DC.  For the last 31 years the DC101 Chili Cook-Off has been DC’s largest one-day rock festival, and this year is no different. On May 22, the Stone Temple Pilots, Alice in Chains and Switchfoot will take the stage at the historic RFK stadium. And don’t forget about the winner of the Last Band Standing competition. A month long affair that has seen 12 of the area’s top local bands going head to head, one band will finally get the prize of playing a set at the Chili Cook-Off. Enjoy the best in rock all while enjoying a delicious bowl of DC chili. As per usual, proceeds will benefit the National Kidney Foundation.

1. ATL’s Largest Street Fest: Sweet Auburn Springfest May 7-9

Picture 16The Sweet Auburn Springfest 2010 is the largest street festival in the Southeast and is expected to attract as many at 500,000 attendees this year. It’s a celebration of Auburn Avenue, the street that links the Martin Luther King National Historical site and the Center for Civil and Human Rights.

The Sweet Auburn Spring Festival celebrates all cultures and features art, food and music from all over the South, even the world, but the entertainment aspect can’t be overlooked. Every year Springfest features up and coming artists from the greater Atlanta area, including Macon, Augusta and Chattanooga. Throughout the years, Springfest has helped non-established acts find their way to stardom. Former performers include, Usher Raymond, India Irie, Raven Symone and Outkast.

1. Viva Italia at Italian Market Festival May 15-16

Picture 31Taking place in America’s oldest and largest working outdoor market, the Italian Market Festival is a huge, multi-block festival that takes over the heart of South Philadelphia. With the traffic closed off, the streets are lined with vendors offering every Italian delicacy possible, including fresh sausage and peppers, antipasto salads, roast pork sandwiches, cheeses, cured meats, an infinite array of pastries, famous mango roses, and more. There are also gift and cookware shops as well as street-side merchants selling specially prepared foods just for the festival. Nearby restaurants also extend their table service to the sidewalk so that customers can enjoy the festival atmosphere while dining. In addition to the food, there will be two days of free concerts on three different stages featuring classic rock and party band favorites. If that wasn’t enough, rounding out the weekend is a half ball tournament along with other competitions and games.

1. Massive Memorial Day Parade May 29

Picture 7As one of the largest Memorial Day parades in the nation, the Chicago Memorial Day Parade is definitely one worth attending. Gracing the streets of Chicago since 1870, the parade honors all those who sacrificed their lives in defense of our country and is a day to be thankful for what we have. This year, participants include area high school Marching Bands, Drum and Bugle Corps, many Veterans’ groups, JROTC and the military. The parade draws about 10,000 spectators every year. The event begins with the wreath laying on Daley Plaza’s Eternal Flame at 11, and parade officially starts there at noon.

1. Cinco de Mayo Festival May 8

car1Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican victory over the French army in 1862,  and oddly enough, no one celebrates it quite like the people of San Francisco. The annual celebration is one of the city’s most spectacular, featuring various Latin American cultures with traditional music, dance, food and artistry. Every year tens of thousands of San Francisco families flock to their local Mission neighborhood centers to celebrate with family friendly, free events that support the MNC.

But this year, the party is getting started a little differently. This year the MNC will host their first ever Black Tie VIP Dinner Gala, and will honor locals in the community who have supported the MNC over the last 50 years.

1. Food, Entertainment & Racing at LA Marathon May 16

Picture 8Experience the streets of Los Angeles in a completely different way at the LA Marathon. The usually congested streets are blocked off for runners and bikers as they race past some of LA’s most famous landmarks and diverse neighborhoods.

As the largest marathon expo in the world, over 1,000,000 spectators come to cheer on over 25,000 runners every year. The main marathon is 26.2 miles long with block parties spaced along the route. Spectators can enjoy food and entertainment at the block parties as they watch the runners pass by. This year, the route goes from Dodger Stadium and ends at the Santa Monica Pier. Other events include the Finish Line Festival, the Health & Fitness Expo and the Win Forever Motivational Dinner with Pete Carroll.

1. Miami Dance Festival is Back! May 1-29

Picture 15The Miami Dance Festival and the Momentum Dance Company is back. The Momentum Dance Company has been going strong for over 25 years and features eight very talented members who participate in over 60 performances a year.

This year’s festival features seven other dance companies and several special guests, who will perform a diverse collection of dancing styles from all over the world. Kicking off the festival this year is the Brazz Dance Theatre, who will blend modern dance with traditional West African. The festival will also feature: Ballet Flamenco La Rosa performing an interpretation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth in La Dama Macbeth, A Miami/Mumbai evening with Guest Artists Geeta Dias and NeSh Dance, Momentum Dance Company joining with Shakespeare Miami for an informal evening of poetry readings and improvisational dance based on Shakespeare’s poetry, and master classes with Momentum Dance Company.

1. Wildflower! Arts and Music Festival May 14-16

Picture 11The B-52s, Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe, Los Lonely Boys and Bowling for Soup; there’s only one festival in Texas that can handle all of these great acts, and that’s the Wildflower Arts and Music Festival. Over 70,000 guests will celebrate the festival’s 18th anniversary with three days of music. But that’s not all, the festival also features a Kidz Korner and dozens of buskers and acrobats, a Petting Zoo and the Laser Spectacular Show. This year the laser show is entitled The King of Pop and will pay tribute to none other than Michael Jackson.

1. Spend Memorial Day at Downtown Denver Arts Fest May 28-31

Picture 6Originally known as the Celebrate Colorado Artists Festival, this fine arts and craft festival has still kept its original vision of promoting local artists from Colorado and connecting them to the community.

In its 12th year, the festival is held over Memorial Day Weekend at the Denver Pavilions. This year, more than 125 artists will be featured and over 150,000 people are expected to attend. The festival is free of charge, and attendees are welcome to buy any of the art they see. Just last year, visitors spent over $500,000 on the featured artwork. There will definitely be something here for everyone.

2. 60’s is Alive at Greynolds Park Love-In May 16

Picture 16The spirit of the 60’s is alive and kickin’ in Greynolds Park this summer. Celebrating the history of Greynolds Park as the center for flower power during the 1960’s in Miami, this year’s Love-In will feature live music, vintage clothing and 60’s memorabilia. Over 5000 tie dyed attendees are expected to be on hand for music legends “The Grass Roots” who will be performing with their original lead singer Rob Grill. The event will also include a kid’s zone, food and drink areas, and arts and crafts. As a day of free love- and plenty of peace signs- the Greynolds Park Love-In will do just that.

2. A Green Mother’s Day at Santa Monica Fest May 8

Now in its nineteenth year, the Santa MonicaPicture 9 Festival highlights the connections between community, culture, business, environment and art. It takes place over Mother’s Day weekend and every year is a great place to bring Mom for a relaxing day filled with music, dance, visual arts, food, information and, of course, shopping!

The festival celebrates Mother Earth and focuses on preserving the environment. As a near zero-waste event, the vendors feature earth-friendly artistic wares, while local eateries bring fresh foods. There are also art workshops using recycled and re-purposed materials, as well as talks, discussions, and entertainment that focus on environmental sustainability. It’s a fun and educational experience for Mom and the family.

2. Rare to Famous Wines at Philly Wine Festival May 8

Picture 32Philly wine lovers, unite. This is the festival for you. Featuring nearly 200 of the world’s finest wineries, this event is a must for wine connoisseurs and enthusiasts. The festival will have some of the world’s most famous wines as well as hard-to-find vintages and rare blends, including Allegrini, Michele Chiarlo and Robert Mondavi. The winemakers or local representatives will be at the tables to answer questions and discuss wines.

The festival will feature signature dishes from some of Philly’s best restaurants, including The Capital Grille, Barclay Prime and Penne Restaurant & Wine Bar. There will also be cheese, crudite, and light hors d’oeuvres for guests to enjoy. A portion of the ticket sales and 100% of the silent auction proceeds will go to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

2. Puppets Get Risqué at Avenue Q May 18-23

Picture 20The 2004 Tony Award-winner for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book is coming to Atlanta. Avenue Q tells the laugh-out-loud story of Princeton, who wanders the fictional Avenue Q looking for his purpose in life, as the song “What Do You Do with a BA in English?” explains. With clever and catchy songs, Avenue Q is, according to Entertainment Weekly, “one of the funniest shows you’re ever likely to see.” It’s risqué, off color and down right hilarious.

And did we mention that the entire cast is played by puppets? But beware, these aren’t your Sesame Street muppets, there’ a sex scene in this musical- puppet style!

2. Taste of the North End at the Aquarium May 14

events_im3This year’s 16th annual Taste of the North End Celebration will take place in the New England Aquarium. Experience cuisine as diverse and exquisite as the wildlife you are observing. While snacking on delicious food from over 25 local restaurants, you can also explore the coral reefs of Australia and the Bahama Islands, meet harbor seals, African penguins, and observe one of the most spectacular collections of jellyfish in America. Not only is this killing two birds with one stone- checking off a must-see on the Boston attraction list as well as sampling incredible dishes- this year’s proceeds will support the programs and services offered by the North End Community Health Center.

2. KFOG KaBoom! Concert & Fireworks May 22

Kaboom_8694KFOG 104.5 is the bay area’s leader in “World Class Rock” and its annual KFOG KaBoom is just around the corner. Every year KFOG sponsors a concert for its loyal fan following, the nicknamed Fogheads, with music the listeners love. This year, following the event’s move to Candlestick Park, they’ve added new attractions, including an expanded section for children and a wine tasting hosted by Wente Vineyards.

This year’s show will feature headliners Melissa Etheridge and the John Butler Trio. And after the shows, as per tradition, KFOG will unleash a fury of fireworks that are synchronized to a classic rock soundtrack. Last year’s fireworks were set to the music of John Williams, ACDC, REM and others, but you’ll have to attend this year’s show to see what the crew from KFOG has in store.

2. Viva Cinco in the Park! May 8-9

Picture 11There’s no better place to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in Denver than at Cinco in the Park. With three large stages of live entertainment, 350 exhibitors and food venders, a children’s carnival, free samples and giveaways, and interactive sponsor exhibits, there is an endless amount of things to do to get into the Cinco de Mayo spirit.

The band Conjunto Atardecer will headline the entertainment, which ranges from festive mariachi to duranguense to ballet folklorico. There will also be a multitude of events this year, including a rock climbing wall, a home run derby park, a freestyle soccer competition, and a tricked out DJ car. To top it off, there will also be the Green Chili Bowl Cook Off, which features 10 of Denver’s best Mexican restaurants, a celebrity judging panel and a public voting process.

2. National Flower Mart 2010 May 7-8

Picture 20Every year, the National Cathedral in Washington puts on a festival and flower show for families and gardeners. This year’s Flower Mart will feature plant sales, landscape exhibits, boutique booths and garden tours. There will also be plenty of activities for children, including a rock wall, moon bounce, mini-Ferris wheel and a century-old restored carousel. And there is sure to be plenty of fabulous music, and entertainment as well.

The food selection is as varied as the flowers, with vendor stations all around the Mart, including gourmet pizza, BBQ, lobster rolls and plenty of sweet baked goods. And this year the Cathedral offers a special treat on top of that. The first tower climb of the year will be during the Flower Mart. Brave the climb up the 333 steps to the bell-ringing chamber, 300 feet above the ground, where you will enjoy a demonstration of the bell ringing- not to mention the spectacular view of Washington from one of the city’s highest points.

2. Rock Out at Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival May 29-30

Picture 18Some of the most popular nightclubs and bars are located around the intersection of Belmont and Sheffield and serve as a testament to its central role for all that’s happening in Chicago’s trendy Lakeview neighborhood. With its reputation for nightlife, food, and music, it comes as no surprise that the Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival is a reflection of the atmosphere and style that the neighborhood is famous for. The festival boasts some of the best local musical talents in the Midwest. This year, the bands include the Trippin Billies, Wedding Banned, Rock Candy and more. The festival also features arts, crafts, fashion, and a variety of food and drinks. It usually brings out a young crowd, so there will be plenty of partying and dancing here, too.

2. Kick Off the Summer at Mayfest May 1-2

It’s four days of fuPicture 13n for every member of the family at the Mayfest. It’s one of the largest and most diverse festivals in Texas and this year is no exception. There are three stages devoted to live music, each stage featuring several local acts every day and Saturday will feature dance and performing arts all day on four separate stages. Once you’ve seen all the entertainment you want, there’s still the Trinity Haunted House, a Frisbee Dog Show, The All American Lumber Jack Show, and the art and gift market area which features over 40 booths of handmade crafts and gifts. All that fun and entertainment is sure to work up and appetite, and have no fear, this year’s Mayfest will host over 25 different food vendors ready for tastes of all types and ages. If you’re looking for a great way to kick off the summer months, look no further.

3. Party at Cinco De Mayo Festival May 1-2

Picture 10Celebrating Mexico’s victory over French forces in Puebla, Mexico in 1862, this free festival takes place during one of Mexico’s most important holidays. The Cinco de Mayo festival is located along LA’s oldest street that was first settled by Mexican immigrants in the 1780s, and today attracts thousands to partake in traditional food, drinks, music, entertainment and art. There are plenty of twirling folklorico dancers, mariachi music and sizzling Mexican food to be found here. The vendors also offer a variety of authentic items and carnival rides and games. There are also community-service oriented booths and arts and crafts stations. This year, the headliner is still being kept a secret, but other groups that will be playing include Roncovacoco and La Santa Cecilia.

3. ATL’s Caribbean Carnival 2010 May 29

Picture 22Since 1988 groups from diverse Caribbean islands have been coming together every May to put on a celebration of West Indian Culture, with a carnival. This year’s carnival will feature costume bands, Steelpan, and Masqueraders, all dancing and making music while parading through the streets of downtown Atlanta. And afterwards the festivities continue at the festival village, which will feature arts and crafts, authentic Caribbean foods and live entertainment.

The celebration snakes through the best parts of Atlanta. The carnival begins at Civic Center Marta Station, proceeds on West Peachtree to Peachtree St. then turns left on John Wesley Dobbs, hangs a right onto Fort St and enter Village, and ends at corner of Auburn Ave/Fort Street. A day of food, fun, and plenty of music, the Atlanta Caribbean Carnival is fun the whole family can enjoy.

3. Cambridge Science Festival May 1-2

4552516733_36a4bf23b0The Cambridge Science Festival, a nine day event, is a celebration of science, technology, engineering and math. The festival kicks off on April 24th at the Cambridge Public Library, with a free Science Carnival, where attendees can make blue slime, celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first laser, make ice cream with liquid nitrogen, and many more fascinating exhibits, all of which explore the different aspects of science in a fun and exciting way.

After that the festival continues for the next week with events tailored specifically towards kids, teens and adults that culminates with the Let’s Rock the World Treasure Hunt, an all day geology-based treasure hunt. Participants must find the way using clues hidden throughout Cambridge, each of which leads to the next. Its free to enter and prizes will be awarded to the select few who find all ten clues.

3. Eclectic Ninth Avenue Int’l Food Festival May 15-16

Picture 28New York is famous for its street fairs, and none of the street fairs are more known than the Ninth Avenue International Food Festival in Hell’s Kitchen. Started in 1973, this food festival attracts more than a million people every year. The festival reflects the cultural and ethnic diversity that is Hell’s Kitchen. Besides the standard zepplois, funnel cakes, mozzarepas, and egg creams, there is a smorgasbord of unique foods that will only be found here. From Argentinian to Cajun to Moroccan to Peruvian food, the list here goes on and on.

There are also over 200 street fair and flea market vendors selling various items. There is a stage with live entertainment on 55th Street on Sunday, featuring international music and dance like Egyptian belly dancing, Arabian scarf dancing and German folk dancing. If you’re bringing the family, there is also a children’s pavilion featuring games and activities. There is no admission fee, and the festival raises money for community groups in the neighborhood.

3. Rock Out With Denver Day of Rock May 29

Picture 12In just one day, catch 20 bands on four stages in downtown Denver. Each stage will feature local acts capped off with a national headliner. This year, the bands include Five For Fighting, Fishbone, the Aggrolites, the Romantics and the Fixx. Best part about the festival? It’s all free!

The rock festival is hosted by Concerts For Kids and geared towards a family setting with a variety of kids-oriented entertainment, like face paining, chalk drawings, Rock Band on Wii, a demo and more. Participating restaurants offer food and beverage specials to ROCKSTAR wristband holders and local businesses will be offering interactive stations near each stage.

3. Celebrate Cinco De Mayo May 2

Picture 21The Maru Montero Dance Company is one of the most recognized and celebrated Latino Dance companies in DC, and this May they are putting on the annual Cinco De Mayo festival on the National Mall. Thousands will gather to enjoy the day-long activities, which will feature live music and dance, arts & crafts workshops and children’s games. On the main stage the Maru Montero Dance Company will offer live entertainment all day, including salsa, merengue and mariachi. There is never a dull moment at this festival.

3. Find the Unexpected at Art Star Craft Bazaar May 15-16

Picture 33Quirky and unique is what you’ll find at the Art Star Craft Bazaar, an outdoor retail art/craft show that is juried by Philadelphia’s Art Star Gallery & Boutique. Featuring over 100 local and national artists, shoppers can find a variety of exceptional and high quality handmade goods made from fabric, clay, glass, wood, paper and more. Anything and everything will be found here, including house wares, paper goods, dolls, prints, ceramics, clothing, accessories, paintings/drawings, sculpture and many other unique objects. There will also be music throughout the festival with a line-up of various local bands. For food, there will be plenty of pizza and hot dogs, as well as vegetarian/vegan food from local eateries like A Full Plate Café and the Soy Café. The first 250 guests each day will get a free tote bag filled with various goodies.

3. 99th Annual Bay to Breakers Race May 16

Picture 25For nearly a century, fitness fanatics have been participating in San Francisco’s Bay to Breakers footrace. Around ten thousand people will participate in the 7.46 mile race, but don’t let the fact that you’ll be competing against world class athletes deter you, who will be gunning for the blistering course record of 33 minutes. There’s also plenty of costumed runners, who have been participating since 1940, as well as some who are simply out for a day of running and walking through the beautiful course as it snakes through San Francisco. The race begins on the north side of downtown, near the bay, and heads west to finish at Ocean Beach and its breaking waves, hence the name.

3. Laughs and More Laughs with Conan O’Brien May 19-20

Picture 19With Conan O’Brien  finally back on TV with his new TBS show, it seems that we can get back to getting our late night doses of laughter. Yet, for those who don’t just want to see him on a TV screen, Conan is also currently touring the nation on his Legally Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour. Already receiving great reviews and an enormous turnout, the tour showcases Conan at his best. Joined by his sidekick Andy Richter and classic characters like Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, Conan does stand up, interviews, videos and more in his show. If you’ve missed Conan on late night or are just looking for some great laughs, Conan’s tour is for you.

3. The Classy Mainly Mozart Festival May 1-31

For the past 17 years the Mainly Mozart Picture 17festival has promoted classical music with a series of concerts that feature the best in classical chamber music. This year boasts eight concerts that will feature the music of Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms and, of course, Mozart himself.

But this year is special, not only will the festival host a free concert of Mozart’s greatest works specifically for children, but will also feature world renown soprano Esther Jane Hardenbergh who will take part in a special voice focused concert. This year’s festival will have everything loyal fans expect, but remain fun and exciting for first timers.

3. Get Outside at Grapevine’s Outdoor Adventure May 21-23

Picture 14Non-stop performances on five stages, scuba diving, BMX stunts, trampoline acrobat stunts and kayaking. Put them all together and you’ve got a very eventful weekend at the Main Street Outdoor Adventure in Downtown Grapevine. This fun-filled festival is set in the Historic Downtown Grapevine, and highlights everything one can enjoy outside, with three days full of “grillin, chillin and thrillin.” The festival is a celebration of all things outdoors and will feature gunfighters of the Old West, music from rock and R&B to bluegrass and country, as well as grilling demonstrations. Main Street Outdoor Adventure will also feature traditional festival food like funnel cake and corn dogs as well as two wine tasting pavilions.

Kimmel Center: All-Star on Avenue of the Arts

Picture 15To witness the finer side of performing arts, the Kimmel Center is the place to be in Center City. The Kimmel is operating multiple venues (the Academy of Music and Merriam Theater, along with its namesake venue The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts) on the Avenue of the Arts. There are not many places in the area where you could witness everything from Neko Case to Lyle Lovett to The Vienna Philharmonic.

The Academy of Music, one of Philadelphia’s oldest and most prestigious theaters, showcases one of the most robust Broadway series outside of New York City. With offerings like Dream Girls and the revival of South Pacific, there is a show for every taste. The Kimmel Center’s in-house presenter hosts a variety of programming every year with some of the most respected and revered musicians, dancers and performers in the world. And for those who don’t like the commitment, there are informal free performances in the beautiful, expansive lobby every Friday night.

If you enjoy the art of a building as opposed to a performance, the Kimmel Center is one of the most famous designs from architectural designer Rafael Viñoly. The building is an entire city block of vaulted glass roof and makes any first-time visitor gasp in amazement.

Sofitel Hotel is Synonymous with Luxury

Sofitel is a name synonymous in the hotel industry with prestige, luxuPicture 18ry and elegance. The Sofitel in Philadelphia is right off of ritzy Rittenhouse, and carries the company’s signature blend of French and American styles.

The Sofitel notoriously houses some of Philadelphia’s most high profile visitors, including politicians and famous musicians (have you heard of the New York Philharmonic? I thought so). It is no surprise that the cream of the crop is staying here because the service is impeccable, having won Travel & Leisure’s Best Hotels of 2010 award.

The basic run-down of amenities is quite more than basic. Sofitel is pet friendly, and by that we mean the front of house staff will learn Fido’s name before they learn yours, and the hotel’s charming brasserie Chez Colette has received accolades over its lifetime for its French cuisine and stylish 1920s atmosphere.

Get Courtside Seats at the Supreme Court

Picture 3Ever wanted to sit in the Supreme Court and see what goes on? Come early to the Front Plaza and there might just be a seat available. Watch attorneys argue their case in front of the Supreme Court justices. If the oral argument portion of the Term is over, there is still a chance to hear the justices when they release their opinions and orders for earlier cases in mid-May. If you’re in town on a day the court isn’t here, don’t worry, there are plenty of exhibits, lectures and movies in the justice’s place every day.

The building itself is quite a sight. Highlights include a statue of John Marshall, marble and bronze spiral staircases, the Court Chamber, and the famous phrase “Equal Justice Under Law” scribed on the architrave in the front entrance.

The Nation’s First Zoo in Philadelphia

Located just outside the city limits in West Fairmount Park is a Victorian Garden filled with rare, unusual and exotic creatures from all corners of the Earth. This may sound Picture 8like the beginning of a fairy tale, but we’re really talking about The Zoo. The Philadelphia Zoo is the nation’s first zoo, opened in 1874, and remains a touchstone of Philadelphia culture and tourism. The Zoo is easy to navigate and great fun for children – especially the Treehouse, which showcases larger-than-life habitats for kids to roam and explore (like the gigantic honeycomb to hang out in). The Children’s Zoo has a baby zoo for the tots and farm animals that like a little more interaction.

New exhibits include the PECO Primate Reserve with 11 different species, and the Carnivore Kingdom that houses the rare white lions, snow leopards and jaguars. The Reptile House and Jungle Bird Walk are both newly renovated and give up close and personal experiences.

Insider’s Tip: Parking is a hot commodity, so either get there early or choose a more overcast day to hang with the furry friends.

Nan Thai: Discover The Food Golfer Vijay Singh Loves

Thai dining- at its highest level- is easily found at Nan Thai Fine Dining. Outside, the tone is set with an eye-catching gold statue right at the corner of Spring and 17th Street, minutes from Atlantic Station and the Woodruff Arts Center. Inside, it doesn’t stop. Elegantly appointed sculptures and art compliment the sleek and sophisticated room full of bamboo touches; even the bathroom is a calming oasis.

Equally impressive is the distinctive and flavorful food by Chef Nan Niyomkul, who co-owns Nan with her husband Charlie. The Pla Muk Thod, affectionately known as “fire calamari,” is an appetizer must. Pla Sahm Lod, the Chilean sea bass done in a three-flavor chili sauce, is a satisfying entrée. It’s not cheap like most Thai places, but it’s very well worth the expense.

Business is fine, but Nan works even better for romance. Its many admirers include Tiger Woods and family friends Vijay Singh and his wife Ardena. Singh is such a devotee that his love prompted a 2005 Sports Illustrated article about the Niyomkuls and their food, so it’s certainly cuisine worthy of any Master.

Top Chef’s Ryan Scott Dines at Tommy’s Joynt

San Francisco’s “Top Private Chef” Ryan Scott, whom may look familiar from the Top Chef: Chicago season, has strong opinions on what’s at the top of the Bay Area’s must-sees. “The Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard Street and Tommy’s Joynt should be on everyone’s list when visiting San Francisco,” Chef Ryan Scott told citybuzz.

Tommy’s Joynt may seem likePicture 12 the odd man out, but it’s got a legend to go along with its legendary following: Tommy’s Joynt is the place where Metallica met and first came together. Even as one of San Francisco’s older restaurants, lines are generally out the door for the simple, mouth-watering American favorites that even the most sophisticated chefs can’t resist. “They let you build your own plate with ingredients from roast beef, turkey, corned beef, braised lamb shank and spaghetti, with sides that remind you of Thanksgiving all year long,” Chef Ryan Scott says. And if that weren’t enough, there’s a bonus to this humble diner joynt: “Did I mention they have over 125  beers to choose from?” So whether it’s a liquid diet or a hearty holiday meal you’re looking for, Tommy’s Joynt has it covered.

*** Chef Ryan Scott is a San Francisco-based private chef who has honed his skills at some of San Francisco’s best restaurants: Gary Danko, Myth Cafe and Mission Beach Cafe. Chef Ryan Scott was featured on Bravo’s Top Chef: Chicago and makes frequent television appearances on The Today Show and Fox & Friends.

WWII Memorial is DC’s Newest for the World’s Greatest War

When you think of the word “memorial” in Washington D.C., the first thing that comes to mind is probably the Lincoln or Jefferson Memorial. Well, it’s time to add the brand new World War II Memorial to the must-see list. With 56 granite columns split between two half-circles framing the Rainbow Pool and its fountains, this beautiful memorial honors the service of 16 million members of the Armed Forces and the 405,399 American casualties during WWII.

Picture 12As the only 20th century war honored on the National Mall, it has plenty of interesting things to see, many of which are full of symbolism and beauty. The granite columns symbolize the unity of the 48 states (at the time of the war), seven federal territories and Washington D.C. during WWII. Two 43-foot tall pavilions honor American victory on the Atlantic and Pacific fronts.

Away from the bright and bustling area and around the Rainbow Pool is a solemn wall of 4,048 Gold Stars, where each star pays tribute to 100 soldiers who sacrificed their lives for their country. There are also areas where dozens of battle names and military campaign designations are carved into stone. The memorial also offers several hidden treasures, such as the famous “Kilroy was here” graffiti.

Visitors can search the WWII Registry, a computerized database that honors Americans from the war. There are also daily tours, as well as more in-depth walking and bicycle tours that visit other areas as well.

Chic Club Fun at Vango

As the warmer months are fast approaching, everyone starts talking about Vango and its uber-sexy Skybar roof deck lounge. Vango offers several different atmospheres throughout the club and lounge. If you’re in for a night of high-rolling and sophisticated fun, oPicture 16rder the bottle service and receive top-notch attention in the reserved area. Or if you’re looking for an evening filled with house music and calorie-burning grooving, the dance floors inside will not fail you. The DJs always keep the mood going all through the night – be sure to check out the color-coded calendar on the website so you can choose the tunes you’ll be dancing to.

Vango is more than just a club and killer roof deck (although with 8,000 square feet, it’s a whole lot of club), it also offers an enviable menu. The styles of chef Michael Fee (from Nobu) and owner Dia Sawan (from the family who gave us Philadelphia’s Mediterranean gems Byblos and Fez) meld Japanese and Mediterranean classics wonderfully; there aren’t many places you can begin with hummus for an appetizer, eat a main course of yellowtail jalapeño and spider rolls, then finish off with an order of baklava.

Decadestwo’s Christos Garkinos Eats at Tere’s Mexican Grill

Decadestwo co-owner Christos Garkinos, who is the self-proclaimed “Robin Hood of Fashion,” has access to some of Hollywood’s best closets, like Charlize Theron, Rachel Zoe and Selma Blair. When he’s not shmoozing with the rich and fabulous and filling his store with high-end consignment items at killer prices, Christos is at Tere’s Mexican Grill.

“It’s the best Mexican food in the city,” ChristosPicture 15 told citybuzz. At Melrose and Cahuenga, this popular and humble Mexican joint is just steps from his home, which as he explains is “a huge LA bonus.” The easy-to-miss restaurant may have tennis ball-footed chairs and orders are only taken at the bar, but who needs pizazz when the food does all the talking? Delicious handmade tortillas wrap the overflowing burritos and tasty enchiladas. A favorite meal is the Carne Asada Nachos that’s washed down with a fresh, traditional Horchata drink. The sunny, earthy interior as well as sidewalk seating make this a perfect spot to enjoy the LA sunshine, while chowing down on some of the best Mexican food North of the Border.

*** Christos Garkinos is the co-owner of the popular LA consignment boutique, Decadestwo, that has been featured on Bravo’s The Rachel Zoe Project. Decadestwo has high-end designer clothing, shoes and accessories from some of Hollywood’s most fashionable closets. Christos is also owner of LA’s Alpha, an all-encompassing men’s store, which GQ named as one of the top 100 men’s stores in the country.

1. Christie’s Goes Green for Earth Day Auction April 22

Picture 12Every April, we remember to celebrate the amazing planet we live on, and Christie’s celebrates the green month with a celeb-filled Green Auction. This inaugural event, in conjunction with NBC Universal, is going to be huge. Hosts include Salma Hayek, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, Vera Wang, and co-chaired by members of the Rockefeller family.

Guests will be bidding on coveted artworks, like ones from Damien Hirst, and incredible experiences, like trips to Bali and Antarctica or dinner with Eli Manning, that will benefit four non-profit organizations: Central Park Conservatory, Conservation International, Natural Resources Defense Council and Oceana. For those who can’t make it to the star-studded evening event, don’t worry, as participants are encouraged to bid online, in real time, with Christie’s LIVE.

Christie’s proves that “a bid to save the earth” is definitely glamorous.

1 OAK is One of a Kind

1OAK, which stands for One Of A Kind, is the true Manhattanite hotspot. Hidden at the crossroads of the Meatpacking and Chelsea party districts, it brings together the best of both of these worlds: a strict door policy (read: better, hotter clientele) and music that keeps people dancing until daylight.

1OAK has all the elements that makePicture 15 for a hot NYC nightclub. It’s small and elegant, so the doormen are super choosy at the tight door. Celebrities come here like no other club in Manhattan: it’s the place where Lindsay Lohan infamously tweeted about Justin Timberlake’s supposed “indiscretions.” 1OAK hosts some of the most VIP parties in Manhattan, from Fashion Week after-parties to Robin Thicke’s birthday party, with guests like Jay-Z and Beyonce, to name but a few. The DJs are some of the best around, the cocktail waitresses are some of the hottest around, and the prices are, well, astronomical.

So what makes it one of a kind? 1OAK is the place for after hours clubbing. When true parties get sick of the first club at, let’s say, 2am or 3am, they head over to 1OAK where the party is just getting hot. The door technically closes at 4am, but that’s only when they stop serving alcohol, as this party goes much later and gets much crazier. For those staying late with a table, 1OAK is rumored to bolt the door and serve its patrons breakfast.

Now that’s 1 Of a Kind.

Get Your Body and Mind Aligned at In-Symmetry

San Francisco is inundated with salon and spa storefronts- some pricey, some alternative and some for the gentleman traveler.  Yet who wants another mediocre massage when there’s In-Symmetry?  Hidden on the south side of Potrero Hill, this high quality day spa has a “members only” atmosphere and an “everyone’s welcome” price- just like Trader Joe’s.

Picture 20In-Symmetry Spa is as proud of its history of service for Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, K.D. Lang, Ashton Kutcher, Pink, and Natalie Merchant as it is its deep-tissue massage services for the masses of locals who frequent here every week.  No matter who you are, this laid-back spa will treat you with the indulgence and respect you deserve after your long week at work.

Aside from a Zen Hot Stone Massage that will make your body melt on the table, and a healing Sports Massage, In-Symmetry provides specialized Pre-Natal massages that pamper mama-to-be and Facials that will tone and tighten your face without the surgery.  But be prepared, every service here will leave you floating on air with your head in the clouds, so planning your payment ahead of time might be wise.

John Varvatos: Rock ‘n Roll Never Looked Finer

One of the most popular and innovative male fashion designers of our time, John Varvatos, is rock ‘n roll meets high fashion. Taking over the infamous CBGB’s music club- that launched the careers of Blondie and The Ramones- John Varvatos is one of very few that could do the legendary music venue justice.

Most may know John Varvatos for his killer take on Converses, with the madly popular Jack Purcell and One Star styles, but his clothing makes men look effortlessly stylish. Every man can’t help but look two notches cooler in one of the distressed blazers, edgy leather jackets or skull cufflinks. All these cool clothes are hanging next to vintage album covers in a store where punk-rock music is always playing.

Known to throw concerts there from time to time- with free admission and free drinks- it’s no wonder John Varvatos is known as the rock star of fashion.

Open House – Gifting at its Finest

Open House, located in Washington Square West, is a one-stop shop for endless gift-giving possibilities! We’re not the only ones convinced Open House is the placePicture 4 to go for something special – Philadelphia Magazine voted this lovely shop Best of Philly 2009 for hostess gifts.

The shop features eye candy for the home plus much more, like specialty stationary, artisan jewelry, quirky maternity clothing and children’s toys. There are treasures to find in every nook of the store, chock-full of stylish, fresh and unique merchandise that caters to a variety of tastes. Highlights of the goodies: quirky greeting cards and stationary, an enormous candle selection, unique furniture, awesome earrings, and cool yet functional serving utensils. If you chat with the staff, they are always friendly and give great recommendations.

Let It Rain, Because There’s Shine

What Shine nightclub thoughtfully lacks in seating, it makes up for it in getting clubbers moving.  In San Francisco, there’s no hotter up-and-coming locale to put on a great dance Picture 7party than SOMA, the “South of Market” district.  Once home to the sea before the great earthquake filled in the landscape, this part of town is now home to a bit of the old, a lot of the modern, and many open spaces to get the diversity of the area mingling.

And that’s what Shine nightclub is all about, being in the perfect on-everyone’s-commute-home location and making sure everyone gets friendly once they’re here.  With no VIP sections or $400 bottle service, Shine has figured out how to personalize the party within the party for everyone who enters – call ahead and they’ll stock your own booth with a customized mini-fridge.  For $200, Shine provides you and your crew a choice of liquor and mixers, so you can have it your way and any way you like, while dancing the night away.

Spice Market Spices Up the Meatpacking

Few places command the same opening buzz and packed seats six years down the road, but Spice Market has become a mainstay destination in the ever-evolving Meatpacking district. A mega-restaurant – two floors of carved wood canopies and Southeast Asian inspired decor with a perfect people-watching patio- delivers food that’s as delicious and consistent as one would expect from celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten.Picture 19

Spice Market is technically inspired from the street food of Southeast Asia, but the cuisine, which taps the flavors of Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and India, is delivered with luxurious style. For a perfect meal, start off with the Chicken Samosas- a perfect blend of crispy outer shell and moist meat inside; favorite entrees include Steamed Red Snapper with Shitake Mushrooms, Ginger, Scallions and Tarragon or the Red Curried Duck, where a side of the sweet Coconut Sticky Rice Steamed in Banana Leaf takes the spicy curry to another level; finish off the meal with the Thai Jewels and Fruits with Crushed Coconut Ice for a cool dessert. Meals are meant to be shared, so don’t be afraid to order plenty for the table.

Reservations are highly recommended as Spice Market is one of the hottest dining options in its trendy downtown neighborhood, but if all else fails, make sure to grab a seat at the bar where mixologists whip up unique spins on cocktail favorites like the Saigon Cosmo, Ginger Margarita and Pineapple Mojito.

Let Studio Bini Dress Your Child in Style

There’sPicture 15 a saying that if you want something done right you have to do it yourself. Voila- Studio Bini was born! Frustrated with the lack of cute kids clothes, new mom Linde Schlumbom began stitching and sewing unique, sophisticated children’s clothes in her basement. After partnering with artist Sandy Brudos, Studio Bini went from a basement boutique brand to a main street boutique showcasing their own clothes and the work of local designers like themselves.

No hokey teddy bears or big-eyed bunnies will be found here- this kiddy boutique is not only for kids to have unique, sophisticated clothes, shoes, and accessories, but for adults to have a fun experience buying them. With adorable designs like the “Marilyn” dress for the girls and a WWII styled bomber jacket for the boys, you may (secretly) wish they came in adult sizes too!

Studio Bini also offers private label clothing, toys, books and infant equipment. Sizes are from newborn to 4T.

Get Inside the Ultimate Mansion- The White House

From the beginning with the Adams to the glamorous Kennedys to the cool Obamas, the White House has been anything but the humble home for the most powerful families in the U.S.- if not the world.

Picture 5

If you’re lucky enough to get a spot in the exclusive tour, you’ll be able to walk the same steps as the most powerful figurehead in the world. You can go through the state dining room that can host up to 140 heads of states for formal dinners. Then you can make your way through the iconic red, blue, and green rooms, where Obama himself sits to prep for press conferences. Also included in the tour is the party place, The East Room, the Vermeil Room, and the Library that holds 2700 books from American authors or about American history.

Getting this kind of access comes with a few hoops. To visit the White House you have to have a request submitted through your Member of Congress (!) up to six months in advance. The upside, is that all the hard work comes with no price, the tour is free!

You know what they say, the early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the careful planners get an all access pass to the most enviable address in America.

The Philadelphia Museum’s Got Art – And Rocky Balboa

Sure, the Philadelphia Museum of Art has over 225,000 works in 200 galleries and 450 pieces of Presidential China, the finest collection outside the White House, but it also has Rocky Balboa.

Picture 8Stepping up to this incredible museum gives you the desire to put your headphones in, race up the stairs, throw your arms in the air in triumph, and quickly showcase some boxer moves. At least, that’s what Rocky did. Yes, this is the legendary landmark where Rocky trained for the ring. For the filming of Rocky III, Sylvester Stallone himself commissioned the famous Rocky Sculpture that is now posed for photo ops with film fans in its new location at the foot of Eakins Oval, next to the museum.

Of course, let’s not forget. The Art Museum, as it’s appropriately called, hosts traveling art shows of all mediums, from Images of Eastern Art, featuring Chinese Ceramics from the Ming Dynasty that date back as early as 1368, all the way to Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein’s Pop Art movement. Anything goes- above the belt- at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Pig Iron Theatre Company, As Unusual as Its Name

The Pig Iron Theatre Company is a self- proclaimed “dance-clown-theatre ensemble,” proving that this group is as unique as its name. Pig Iron is dedicated to the creation of new and daring performance works that defy easy categorization. Since its creation 12 years ago, the Company has successfully created 22 works and toured all over the world. Philadelphia is lucky that Pig Iron has Picture 15decided to premiere all of their works at home…how sweet!

One of the most intriguing acts is Miss Martha Graham Cracker, Philadelphia’s most beloved drag queen and alter ego of Pig Iron’s co-creator Dito van Reigersberg. Martha makes appearances all over the city on the cabaret circuit, most frequently at Philly’s cabaret/creperie L’Etage.

With highly-anticipated events like Making Faces: A Deep Dive into Masked Performance with Pig Iron, Pig Iron carries on a conversation that it  has been having for over 15 years about masked theatre and how it helps reveal the true actor’s self.

PBR Debauchery at The Barbary

l_fbfdcbe368bd87ee8d8e75d05b2717d9If you need to forget about your work week and that creep ex-boy/girlfriend that won’t stop calling you, The Barbary is your place for all night dancing, drinking and debauchery. The Barbary has some of the cheapest drinks in town ($2 PBRs are the Philly Special) and 6-nights a week it hosts some of the craziest dance parties you have ever experienced.

Monthly calendars are released on its MySpace page with events happening every night of the week. Sundays are Karaoke nights, Wednesdays are the Bouffant Bangouts featuring 50s and 60s music, and Mondays are the Indie Dance parties. The rest of the month is filled in with a satisfying variety of top-notch dance music. If you’re lucky to be in town, the DJ DeeJay “Madonna Michael Price” shows are a must.

And if you just can’t get in the mood without the disco ball, they have that covered, too.

Business & Pleasure at InterContinental Buckhead

Picture 6New neighbors haven’t disturbed the InterContinental Buckhead’s groove. Still a top choice for many, the InterContinental is contemporary in feel, but traditional in service. “Space, space, space” is a welcoming theme as there’s plenty to be had from conference rooms to guest rooms. Relaxed and elegant is the general verve. While guests at the club level do enjoy the added amenities of a private fitness center and lounge, great service is a perk available to all.

Dining at Au Pied de Cochon, the InterContinental’s very own outpost of the famous Paris eatery, is a first class, 24-hour affair. Few places serve fresher oysters. Staying at just the hotel isn’t mandatory either, not with Lenox Mall and Phipps Plaza on the same street along with the many restaurants and handful of clubs in the area. It’s not just fun and games; at the InterContinental Buckhead, business and pleasure are great bedfellows.

House: Not Your Average Hole in the Wall

Fail to pay attention and you’ll walk right by, but for those who know House it stands out like the TransAmerica building amidst the cliché dim sum depots that define Chinatown.  For over a decade, House has finely presented the best in East-meets-West cuisine for its loyal patrons.

Picture 7Always dramatic, Chef Larry Tse’s perfectly balanced towers of food are known to awe.  Set against a sleek neutral atmosphere with slate tiles and simply framed art, his presentations really stand out.  Don’t expect dumplings in a bamboo steamer, they’ll come out arranged around a delicate sauce on a paper-thin layer of beets, and it’s as pleasing to look at as it is to eat.

Of course, every restaurant has its signature.  For House, the miso-glazed black sea bass ($24) has a long-standing following; it’s a caramelized slab of perfect white fish draped with a long-biased cut of California roll.  House also performs every operation with military efficiency and precision so you can get in, get out, and enjoy your evening on the town.

Parisian Sculptures in the Heart of Philly at Rodin

Picture 14Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) changed the face of figurative sculpture and ushered in a whole new era of artistic expression, and Philadelphia is lucky to hold the namesake museum and the lush gardens that surround it. Based on the collections of Philadelphia’s great movie theater magnate and philanthropist Jules E. Mastbaum, the Rodin holds most of the sculptor’s works and strives to preserve and restore his art. It’s one of the only places outside of France that you can experience his work!

Perhaps the most exciting part of the Rodin is the collaboration between the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Fairmount Park Commission, and Pennsylvania Horticultural Society to renew and exhibit this urban oasis. These Philadelphia big wigs are making the Rodin into the flowering utopia it was meant to be, showcasing both the artwork and the nature that inspires it. Sometimes trying to pay a visit to a national museum in one stop can be overwhelming, but the conciseness of the Rodin makes it perfect for an afternoon stop.

2. Star Studded TriBeCa Film Festival April 21-30

Picture 18Tribeca Film Festival invades lower Manhattan once a year and it’s always a star studded, must-see red carpet event, after all it was created by Robert DeNiro. One of the most important and popular independent film festivals, this year the parties and controversy have started early.

Shrek Forever After will open the festival, and other films like My Trip to Al Qaeda, Last Play at Shea, and Edward Burns’ Nice Guy Johnny are sure to bring out the stars. One film, though, that is getting a lot of publicity, protests and defense (even a write up in the New York Times) is the transgender comedy Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives. With titles like these, this year’s Tribeca Film Festival will not disappoint.

1. Premier Dallas Wine & Food Fest April 21-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.44.12 PMCome and taste the best wine that Dallas has to offer at the 26th annual Dallas Wine & Food Festival. This is the premier food and wine event in Dallas, taking place over five days at landmark settings in and around the city. The festival showcases local and national talent and is the only festival in Dallas to feature award-winning wines from the Dallas Morning News Wine Competition, the largest national wine competition outside of California. There are various events throughout the festival, from a movie & dinner ticket to cooking seminars to an over-the-top five-course winemaker’s dinner featuring the top winners of the annual Rising Stars Chefs’ Contest.

1. Spring Flowers at Macy’s Flower Show April 1-11

Spring Is In The Air as the Flower Show Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 1.35.41 PMreturns to Macy’s Center City! This year’s show is staged in the Grand Court, the same site of the legendary Wanamaker’s Flower Shows from the 1930s through the early 1970s. Center City will be transformed into a wonderland of spectacular gardens, where magic reaches to new heights and floral fantasies take flight! This year’s show will feature varieties of exotic trees, flowering plants, and brilliant color as far as the eye can see. Take a guided tour or stroll through the beautiful gardens at your own pace. And, don’t miss the hot air balloon centerpiece, that’s overflowing with beautiful flowers, making it the perfect photo-op!

1. Star Studded LA Antique Market April 21-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.03.42 PMThe exquisite invitation-only Opening Night Preview Party for the LA Antique Market will host some of Los Angeles’ most prominent architects, designers, artists and actors. Some of the guests include Courtney Cox and Spiderman Toby Maguire who will be admiring the world’s finest art and antiques at this elegant cocktail party kick-off.
Don’t’ worry if you can’t score an invite, as the main event is open to the public and will be attended by more than 1,000 of the communities most influential professionals and the weekend long event attended by more than 2,500 patrons of the art and antique world. This year’s host committee includes Maria Bell, Courtney Cox, Dita von Teese, and Tobey Maguire.

1. Spring’s Arrived at Cherry Blossom Fest April 10-18

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.58.14 PMMusic and dance performances, martial arts demonstrations, tea ceremonies, flower arranging demonstrations, a food bazaar, and a spectacular Japanese-style parade are among the many events presented at The Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival.
Now celebrating its 43rd year, the Cherry Blossom Festival is one of California’s most prominent celebrations of Asian traditions. Each year, over 150,000 people attend this dazzling display showcasing the color and grace of the Japanese culture and the diversity of the Japanese American Community. All are welcome to join in the festivities and celebrate Japanese and Japanese American culture in San Francisco’s Japantown!

1. The Prestigious 114th Boston Marathon April 19

Picture 8The Boston Marathon is the world’s oldest and most prestigious annual marathon and part of the World Marathon Majors. A maximum field size of 25,000 participants begin in the rural town of Hopkinton and run the legendary course through eight cities and towns before finishing in Boston’s Back Bay area. The 2010 edition will mark John Hancock Financial’s 25th year as principal sponsor.

Truly a competition amongst the elite of marathon runners, to qualify for entrance all men under 35 years of age must prove they have finished a race in under 3 hours and 10 minutes. Wow!

1. Miami Wine & Food Festival April 22-24

Picture 9Ranked as one of the top ten wine events in the nation, the 15th Annual Miami Wine and Food Festival is an event for connoisseurs and simple wine fans alike. Last year’s festival boasted wines from over 60 different wineries, including Moet Hennessy USA and Napa Ridge. The three day festival features an array of culinary and wine events including fine wine tastings, champagne tastings, an interactive dinner with celebrity chef Todd English, and some of the highest quality wine lots in South Florida.

1. Int’l Stars at Filmfest DC April 15-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.02.18 PMRepresenting cinema from over 30 countries, the 11-day Filmfest DC showcases a wide range of extraordinary new films from around the world. The festival’s geographical focus for this year is Eastern Europe and Japan. Each year, the festival hosts over 35 guest film directors and stars. There are discussions with directors, movie premieres, cine cafes, panels, workshops, Q&A sessions after the screenings, and free programs for children and senior citizens. Be sure to check out the opening night gala, where there will be live music, dancing, food, and champagne, as well as the closing night party for an impressive 1,000 guests.

1. Concepts & Hot Rods at Denver Int’l Auto Show April 7-11

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 2.44.19 PMFeaturing more than 500 of the newest vehicles from 30 manufacturers, this auto show is the largest new car display between the Mississippi River and Los Angeles. There are a variety of cars put on display, including muscle cars, concept cars, luxury cars, SUVs, vintage racers, hot rods, and much more. This year, the exhibiting manufacturers include Aston Martin, BMW, Jaguar, Lotus, Mercedes-Benz, and Tesla. There are factory and dealer representatives at the show to answer any questions.

For those who want to do more than just look, there are the “Ride & Drive” programs to test drive select new GM and Kia models. There are plenty of other events as well, like a custom styling and accessories area and the Kids Stop Pit Stop.

2. Federer & Williams at 2010 Sony Ericson Open April 1-4

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 11.08.28 AMWith $9 million in prize money, the Sony Ericsson Open is currently the largest tennis tournament in the world for Title Sponsorship. But the main fact drawing tennis fans to this year’s tournament is that the top 15 men and top 50 women as ranked by ATP will be in attendance; this includes both Williams sisters and perennial champ Roger Federer.

The Sony Ericsson Open, considered one of the most prestigious titles in professional tennis, has been awarded “Tournament of the Year” by the ATP in eight of the last 10 years. The tournament grounds hold 18 different courts, and together with Stadium Court, which seats 13,800 spectators, there will be no shortage of excitement.

2. National Easter Egg Hunt April 5

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.13.09 PMDating back to 1878 when President Rutherford B. Hayes opened the White House grounds to local children for egg rolling on Easter, the annual White House Easter Egg Roll is a tradition that takes place on the White House Lawn. Families can come to hunt for and race Easter Eggs, while listening to stories and getting a visit from the Easter Bunny. Opened to children twelve and under, families can also enjoy sports, cooking classes, and live musical performances.

The theme for this year is “Ready, Set, Go!” promoting health and wellness. There are also wooden souvenir eggs available for online purchase, with each one expertly crafted and painted, as well as signed by the President and First Lady.

2. Opening Day at Coors Field April 9

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Every spring, tens of thousands of cheering fans gather together to watch their favorite baseball team on Opening Day. Regardless of how well the team did last year or is projected to do this year, Opening Day is a new start for every team and every fan. This year, the Colorado Rockies will be playing the Opening Day game against the San Diego Padres. All fans will receive a free 2010 Colorado Rockies Magnet Schedule.

For those who aren’t die-hard fans, Opening Day is still a great experience, as the atmosphere of a filled stadium is always exciting. If anything, just seeing Coors Field makes the trip worth it, since it is one of the best stadiums that baseball has to offer.

2. Eclectic Deep Ellum Arts Fest April 2-4

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.50.48 PMWith over 75 national, regional, and local original bands, the free-to-attend outdoor “street party,” also known as the Deep Ellum Arts Festival, is what makes Deep Ellum one of Dallas’ most progressive and eclectic neighborhoods. With four separate outdoor stages, the festival presents a mix of music genres, including Dallas’ favorite fusion rock, southern soul, and “genre-breaking” bands. This year, the featured headliners include Shuttle, Moosehound, and Hendrick.

Other than music, there are more than 100 top-notch juried decorative and visual artists displaying and selling original works. There’s also the Pet Parade, where hundreds of pet owners and their pets can stroll down Main Street and take part in the various pet related activities and competitions. Throughout the weekend, there will be plenty of food, including Mexican, Caribbean, Mediterranean, Asian, and American.

2. Contemporary Art Chicago April 30-May 3

Picture 31This annual international fair of contemporary and modern art brings together the world’s leading emerging and established art galleries. There are plenty of current and historic works in a wide variety of media, including painting, photography, drawings, prints, sculpture, video and special installations. Programming highlights include Perspective Texas, which will have art from Texas’ top collectors and curators, and Survey America, a floor-wide exhibit that highlights works by artists living and working in the US. There will also be speaker programs that feature international artists, writers, curators and critics discussing trends and issues in the contemporary art market.

2. Prized San Fran Int’l Film Fest April 23-30

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.03.54 PMHighly anticipated by its loyal and passionate audiences, championed by civic and community leaders, admired and adored by filmmakers, and closely watched by industry professionals, SFIFF is one of the most important stops on the international festival circuit.

The San Francisco International Film Festival features a bonanza of narrative feature films, live action and animated shorts, television and theatrical documentaries, experimental work and a variety of new digital media, as well as a smart lineup of industry panels and seminars, awards events, onstage tributes, retrospectives and the highly acclaimed Schools at the Festival program, which brings 4,200 students in grades 1–12 into the film festival.

2. Toast of the Town Wine Enthusiast Gala April 8

Picture 26This evening could very well change the way you think about a wine tasting forever. After all, that is the goal of Wine Enthusiast’s Toast of the Town. Several factors make this annual gala much more than a sampling of reds and whites: the global range of delicious beverages, the food, the music, the setting, and the way they all go together. Sip with the Fishes at a spectacular evening of wines, spirits and music, paired with culinary creations from Atlanta’s top restaurants, all in the spectacular Georgia Aquarium!

2. Popular Romeo + Juliet Extended April 1-11

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 1.42.58 PMCritically acclaimed by The Philadelphia Inquirer, KYW News Radio, and Broadway, rediscover the world’s most enduring romance. Rome + Juliet is the tale of pure passion between star crossed lovers, the children of sworn enemies and has been extended by popular demand for a limited time on the F. Otto Haas Stage. This visceral production celebrates the language and characters of the Shakespearian masterpiece, on a simple stage with minimal sets. As this popular play is about to close, don’t miss what promises to be a performance for the ages.

2. Charles River Canoe & Kayak Race April 25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.43.45 PM The Charles River Watershed Association celebrates 28 years of canoe & kayak races on the Charles River at the ‘Run of the Charles’ on Sunday, April 25. Professional, amateur and recreational canoe and kayak races include international, national and local racers. New England’s largest canoe and kayak race includes 6, 9, and 19-mile races, a 24-mile, five-leg canoe relay race, and a 26-mile professional marathon. The Charles River is one of the most spectacular places in Boston and adding a competition just makes it sure to be fun for all participants, volunteers, and spectators.

3. Hottest Debuts at NY Auto Show April 2-11

Picture 19There will be 32 highly anticipated debuts- 18 world introductions and 14 North American- at this year’s New York Auto Show. It is the new crop of hybrids that has the blogosphere and motor heads buzzing. Hyundai is set to debut its first ever hybrid, the 2011 Hyundai Sonata, along with Porsche’s Cayenne hybrid and Lexus’ sporty compact hybrid, just to name a few. Other highly anticipated debuts include the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG with Gullwing doors, Ford Shelby GT500, Audi A8 and more . The New York Auto Show is only for 10 days, but you’ll definitely be hearing about what’s on display for months- or years- to come.

2. Glamorous Newport Beach Film Festival April 22-29

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.14.19 PMSet against the backdrop of beautiful Newport Beach, just a few blocks away from the spectacular Pacific coastline, the Newport Beach Film Festival annually hosts several premieres, galas, and yacht parties creating a film festival that is truly one of a kind.
And don’t forget that the Newport Film Festival offers attendees a rare opportunity to meet the directors, screenwriters, and cinematographers of some of the films.; they will share their work and provide a unique look from inside the industry during post-screenings Q&A sessions. Featuring over 350 international independent and studio film screenings, actor showcases, music and arts events, fashion shows, red carpet events and galas, this is a film festival that is not to be missed.

3. Macy’s Spring Flower in Union Square April 1-11

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Spring Is In The Air as Macy’s Union Square is transformed into a colorful, vibrant dreamscape, featuring spectacular garden environments with different varieties of exotic trees, flowering plants, and brilliant color as far as the eye can see! Take a guided tour or stroll through the enchanting gardens at your own pace. And don’t miss the gateway garden, overflowing with lush spring flowers and anchored by a massive hot air balloon centerpiece!

3. Angels Home Opener April 5

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.18.59 PMAfter a disappointing loss to the eventual world champions, the New York Yankees, in the American League Championship game last year, the Angels will return to Angel Stadium. For the first time since the road to World Series, the Angels are due to start their 2010 campaign for another AL Western Division Championship of April 5. With the return of Kendry Morales, Erick Aybar, Jered Weaver, and the addition of slugger (and former Yankee) Hideki Matsui, this might be the year for championship number three.

3. Highly Respected USA Film Festival April 28-30

Picture 11Now in its third decade, the 40th Annual USA Film Festival is one of the oldest, most respected festivals in the United States. The festival features the best in American and foreign film. Preview films prior to wide release or discover ones that aren’t scheduled for commercial distribution, meaning you won’t be able to see it anywhere else! There are plenty of discussions and encounters with dozens of filmmakers, directors, actors, screenwriters and composers. One of the two most important competitions, the National Short Film and Video Competition, will be held during this week.

3. Unique Architecture at Doors Open Denver April 17-18

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 3.15.16 PMFor those interested in the unique architecture of Denver, Doors Open Denver is the event to go to. This free event lets residents and visitors see various buildings around Denver.

Participants can either do self-guided tours, urban adventures, or expert tours. Urban adventures are self-guided tours based on a neighborhood or special theme, such as romantic sites or award-winning architecture. Expert Tours are led by architects, historians and volunteer guides.

This year, the sites available for visit include the Civic Center Park, 16th Street Mall, Skyline Park, and the Sugar Building. There are places geared towards families too, such as the Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls & Toys and the Denver Society of Model Railroaders in Union Station.

3. Dogwood Art Festival April 16-18

Picture 27Spring is just around the corner and that can only mean one thing in Atlanta: the Atlanta Dogwood Festival is back. The Dogwoods will be in full bloom, and hundreds of artists from around the country will set up their tents for the 74th Annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival. Virtually every kind of art imaginable will be represented, with a nationally renowned-juried Fine Artist Market that includes sculpture, paintings, pottery, jewelry, and photography.

In addition to the fine art, there is a Kids Village featuring huge inflatables, arts & crafts, and face painting for all ages, as well as the ever-popular 24-foot rock-climbing wall.  Not to mention the wide array of musical offerings will fill the spring air throughout the weekend. When you get hungry, just follow the smells of funnel cakes, gyros, crab cakes, onion rings, kettle corn and much, much more. And don’t forget the free screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho on the meadow, on Saturday at 9 p.m.

3. E!’s Chelsea Handler Live! April 17

Picture 12TV’s favorite late night lady is coming to Philadelphia with her unique style and sense of humor for a one night only show.Sure to be a night of dry wit and pop culture commentary, Chelsea Handler will have you clutching your sides and rolling in the aisles.

And don’t worry guys, her charms are sure to work on you as well as everyone else, and if not, at least she’s nice to look at!

3. Earth Day Events in DC April 22-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.26.20 PMWashington, DC will hold one of the largest Earth Day gatherings in America on the National Mall to rally support for national action on global warming. The Earth Day Network, which hosts the events, is organizing this massive rally to demand Congress pass a comprehensive climate bill in 2010. Earth Day, which is in its 40th year, emphasizes environmental service, advocacy and education.

The Climate Rally on April 25th will act as the flagship for the mission of Earth Day. The event will include a free festival with music, entertainment, speakers and environmental activities. Last year, 100,000 people came and participated, and rockers The Flaming Lips headlined the event.

3. Spring Comes Early at Macy’s Flower Show April 1-11

Picture 20Macy’s is already a must-see when visiting New York City, but this month there’s more of a reason to visit the iconic store. The Macy’s Flower Show, this year titled Spring Is In The Air, is invading the 8 floors of the gigantic department store. Highlights include 10 different garden environments, 30,000 different exotic trees, flowers, and plants, and a hot air balloon centerpiece. But, this is a store after all, and many of the retailers are offering discounts, promotions and specialized gardens on nearly every single floor. This is one of the most beautiful flower displays, and it’s all in the heart of Manhattan.

3. Early Blooming at Spring Flower Shows April 1-30

Picture 32April showers bring May flowers, but they bloom early with these conservatory flower shows. Enjoy gorgeous flowers long before they are blooming naturally outside. The shows take place at Garfield Park Conservatory and Lincoln Park Conservatory.

At Garfield Park, flowers include hydrangeas, spring flowering annuals, spring flowering perennials, and plenty of vibrant colors that will get you ready for the warm weather. There will even be azaleas that are descendents of azaleas on display at the 1893 Columbian Exposition. At Lincoln Park, the show has an impressive collection of palms, ferns, tropical plants and a show house under its Victorian-style glass house.

3. Miami Earth Day Celebrations April 19-24

Picture 15Miami will celebrate the 40th anniversary of Earth Day with a crossing from the Bahamas to Miami with a solar powered boat and  a week full of environmental events that will be fun- and good for the environment- for the entire family. Events include:

Fashion Forward: A hip clothes swap that makes the most out of unwanted clothes. Just bring your items down to the event and start swapping. And an added bonus? It’s free.

MiaSci Mad Lab: Children can enjoy interactive experiments at the Miami Science Museum’s Mad Lab. They’ll learn green concepts for the future, while having fun.

Secure Shredding: We all know that work can be very environmentally wasteful, so bring in your documents for free secure shredding by the premier recycling and shredding service in South Florida.

Miami Goin’ Green: A day long festival at BayFront park where there will be live performances, seminars, and eWaste recycling. The best part is it’s all free.

3. 12th Annual Boston College Arts Festival April 29

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.47.23 PMEvery year, the Boston College Arts Festival brings the community together to celebrate the arts.  This annual spring event, now in its 12th year, showcases over 1,000 student and faculty artists in the performing, visual, and literary arts. Join the over 16,000 art enthusiasts expected to attend the festival and participate in art demonstrations, enjoy music, dance and theater performances, browse through art exhibitions, listen to literary readings and view films. A staple of the festival every year, this year’s children’s activities include interactive arts and crafts, a story hour, and an instrument petting zoo with the Boston College band.

4. Discover Secret Gardens at VA Garden Week April 17-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.40.40 PMIn its 77th season, the Virginia Historic Garden Week showcases more than 250 of Virginia’s most beautiful gardens, homes and historical landmarks. Three dozen tours visit some of the nation’s most beautiful properties during the peak of Virginia’s springtime color. Highlights for this year include the countryside in the Albemarle County/Charlottesville region that Thomas Jefferson called “Little Eden,” the Morven Estate Gardens and House, historic properties linked to George Washington and Robert E. Lee, a number of historic James River plantations, and Monticello.

Get a taste of history as you explore various architectures and gardens, from water gardens to cottage gardens to even secret gardens.

4. Tattoo Artist Dr. Lakra’s ICA Exhibit Begins April 14-30

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.53.50 PMDiscover the playful and provocative works of the artist Jerónimo López Ramírez, also known as Dr. Lakra, who is a renowned tattoo artist that lives and works in Oaxaca, Mexico. Under his pseudonym, loosely translating as “Dr. Delinquent,” he draws over vintage printed materials and found objects rather than skin, manipulating images of pin-up girls, 1940s Mexican businessmen, luchadores, and Japanese sumo wrestlers.

Referencing diverse body art traditions from Chicano, Maori, Thai, and Philippine cultures, Dr. Lakra layers spiders, skulls, crosses, serpents, and devils over these existing images. Playful, naughty, and often intentionally vulgar, his work challenges social norms by blurring cultural identities. This exhibit at the ICA is Dr. Lakra’s first solo exhibition in the U.S., and he will present works from a variety of series as well as a newly commissioned mural.

4. 7 Premieres, 7 Parties at Gen Art Film Fest April 7-13

Picture 23April is the month for film festivals in New York and Gen Art is a great place for cool, cutting edge people and films. Now in its 15th year, the Gen Art Film Festival is a week-long festival showcasing 14 films (7 shorts, 7 features) from some of North America’s most talented emerging filmmakers. In the past it has introduced cutting edge filmmakers like Alan Cumming, Cary Fukunaga and the late Adrienne Shelly. A unique feature of this festival is that regular people can get tickets to the highly coveted and star studded after-parties.

4. Sweet Water 420 Earth Day Festival April 17-18

Picture 28Two full days of music, food and plenty of tasty SweetWater beer from Atlanta’s favorite brewery. Join other earth enthusiasts in beautiful Candler Park in support of Mother Earth. Events include yoga in park, diesel to grease demonstrations, eco art, sustainable living forums, solar energy exploration, activism through music, alternate transportation in ATL, round table discussions for Georgia’s Energy Future, youth climate activism, eco book building, water conservation measure and much more. And best of all, it’s free to go!

4. Denton Arts & Jazz Festival April 23-25

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 1.06.03 PMCome experience jazz in the heart of Dallas in beautiful Quakertown Park. With over 2,200 performers on seven stages, this free festival takes place over two and a half days. This year, the headliners are Chick Corea Trio, Jimmie Vaughan with Lou Ann Barton, and Brave Combo. There are also 175 artists showing and selling their original art. Be sure to eat some great food in one of the five food courts and check out the various games and activities.

For kids, there is the Children’s Art Tent, where the 12 and under can mold, draw, sculpt, and create. Attracting over 200,000 annually, this festival is the place to be for enjoying the culturally diverse music and art.

4. Plenty of Laughs at Chicago Improv Fest April 19-25

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 5.12.34 PMChicago’s best improv can be found at the 13th Annual Chicago Improv Festival. There will be 65 acts, including Improvised Shakespeare Company, Pimprov, Children of a Lesser God and Improvised Tween Erotica, with 38 of those from Chicago. The rest of the acts come from 24 different cities and eight countries. The events take place throughout 12 locations, from the Apollo Theatre to the Second City. Lifetime Achievement Awards will be handed out during the festival to improv legends Harold Ramis, Dick Schaal and Severn Darden. Dick Schaal will also be teaching a 5 hour-long Master Class geared for improv teachers.

4. 300 Different Beers SF Beer Fest April 25

Sample over 300 incredible beers from some of the best Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.13.26 PMcraft brewers from around the world as well as taste a delicious variety of offerings from some of San Francisco’s best restaurants. Admission includes unlimited beer tasting and food, basically a dream come true.
And, you can get your fill without a lot of guilt. The money raised from the admissions tickets will go entirely to fund the teaching and learning programs at the Telegraph Hill Cooperative Nursery School for an entire year!

4. New Getty Exhibit: Leonardo da Vinci’s Sculptures April 1-30

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 12.24.27 PMLeonardo da Vinci was a painter, sculptor, architect, engineer (military, civil, and aeronautical), inventor, anatomist, cartographer, musician and undoubtedly one of the greatest minds of the last thousand years. That’s definitely quite a list!

To celebrate one of this incredible person, the Getty Center is putting on “Leonardo da Vinci and the Art of Sculpture: Inspiration and Invention,” where the focus is on one of his many talents, his achievements as a sculptor. Though no sculptures can securely be attributed to Leonardo himself, the exhibit features the work of da Vinci’s inspiration, Donatello, and his trusted associate, Rustici, whom he closely worked with on many sculptures.

These works, some of which have never left Italy until now, along with Leonardo’s many surviving drawings, give us a glimpse into his artistic accomplishments.

4. Last Chance to Check Out PHILAGRAfiKA April 1-11

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If you love graphic tees then you’ll definitely love PHILAGRAfiKA, an international festival that celebrates the pivotal role of print in contemporary art. The culmination of five years of planning, PHILAGRAfiKA is one of the largest events in the United States with over 300 artists from around the world and 80 cultural institutions participating. As the first-ever PHILAGRAfiKA comes to a close, make sure to check it out in its last month this year!

Variety is an understatement where the exhibits are divided into three categories: The Graphic Unconscious explores printed matter in our visual culture, Out of Print pairs five artists with five historic institutions, and Independent Projects includes a huge variety of exhibitions where the printed image plays a central role.

4. Great Wine at DAM Uncorked April 16-17

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 3.22.14 PMThis is the event to go to for all wine lovers. Taking place in the Denver Art Museum, this is Denver’s premier wine festival. DAM Uncorked offers more than 350 wines from vintners around the world. There are also tasting guides and hors d’oeuvres being served during the wine tasting.

The first day of the festival is the main wine tasting, while the second day is a dinner and auction. The dinner is paired with exceptional wines, while the live and silent auctions feature travel packages, rare bottles of wine, exclusive access to private art collections, and other various items.

4. The Fair Miami is Florida’s Largest April 1-14

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 11.46.46 AMRanked as the largest fair in Florida, The Fair celebrates its 59th year in the spring of 2010. The Fair is an 18-day event that includes Pig Races, a Petting Zoo, Pony Rides, and a European style circus. Not to mention, there are the fair’s two live music shows: Everything Fitz, a family band featuring fiery fiddling and percussive step dancing; as well as Street Beat, a high energy explosion of urban rhythm, hip hop moves, and astonishing break dance acrobatics.

The fair is put on by The Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition, Inc. a private, not-for-profit organization dedicated to enriching their community by promoting education and South Florida agriculture while showcasing and rewarding youth achievement. In its nearly six decade history, The Fair has donated over $8 Million in scholarships, awards and premiums.

5. DC’s Design Best at Design House 2010 April 10-30

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 3.51.27 PMThe annual DC Design Home brings together Washington, DC’s top interior designers to use the best in today’s home renovation and design in order to transform a house for people to see. This year’s house is the famous Beaux Arts home, once home to Ambassadors of Mauritius and Uruguay and the site of President Truman’s inauguration party.

With over 10,000 square-feet, nine bedrooms, and ten bathrooms, there is plenty of room for each designer to showcase their talents. In fact, each designer redesigns a specific area of the house, so each area will be unique. The house will definitely be interesting to walk through.

Participating designers for this year include Andrew Law, Barry Dixon, and Victoria Sanchez. All proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the Children’s Hospital of the Children’s National Medical Center.

5. Unique Snuggie Pub Crawl April 10

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 5.20.48 PMChicago is known for its unique pub crawls, from the Pug Crawl to the Zombie Pub Crawl. The Snuggie Pub Crawl does not disappoint, as participants go out in their comfy Snuggies to drink and have fun. For a $22 registration fee, Snuggie enthusiasts can roam around Lincoln Park to drink beer and play classic drinking games. There are prizes given to the most outrageously decorated Snuggies as well. For Snuggie lovers or those who want to have some fun at the comfy Snuggie’s expense, this pub crawl is definitely not one to miss out on.

5. Spring Celebration & Easter Parade April 4

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.23.28 PMThe Union Street Spring Celebration and Easter Parade is not your average Street Fair or holiday parade. With everything from roller-blading, cows, and creative self-propelled mini-floats to garden areas, sophisticated fashions, and beautiful classic and art cars, it’s a special event for the entire family.

The 19th annual event celebrates and showcases the diverse community of San Francisco and features some of Union Street’s best restaurants serving attendees in an outdoor bistro setting. A variety of children’s and family activities are the focus of the event and include: large inflatable bounces, kids’ rides and games, a climbing wall, a hands-on children’s activities area, costumed characters, a petting zoo, pony ride and entertainment from some of the Bay Area’s best musicians.

5. Coral Gables Wine & Food Fest April 10

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 5.33.07 PMWhat do Grey Goose vodka, Martini vermouth, Premier Beverage Company, and Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables all have in common? They are all sponsors for the 7th Annual Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida Coral Gables Wine & Food Festival; a one-day street festival where you can enjoy world class cuisine, exquisite wines, and live entertainment. At a $50 ticket price, don’t let that turn you away, because all proceeds benefit The American Lung Association in Florida-South Area’s lung research, education and patient assistance programs and The International Bronchitis Center at The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

5. Endless Entertainment at Starfest 2010 April 16-18

Screen shot 2010-03-26 at 3.39.40 PMStarted in 1977 as a science fiction convention, this event has become a celebration of media entertainment, focusing on all aspects of popular media, film and television. There are over a hundred activities that anyone can enjoy, such as film studio presentations, onstage Q&A with actors, producers and directors, autograph and photo sessions, costume and talent contests, film festivals, model and art shows, collectible merchandise, educational seminars, discussion panels, kids events and fan club presentations. Past actors who have come to the event include Tom Cruise, John Travolta, Tobey Maguire, and William Shatner. This year, specific events include a Klingon bop, Pirates vs. Ninja Olympics, Zombie Survival 101 and Iron Man 2 Balcony Challenge.

5. Premier Arts & Crafts at CraftBoston April 9-11

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 4.57.59 PMCraftBoston is New England’s premier exhibition and sale of contemporary art, craft and design. This year’s show will feature 200 of the most outstanding artists of our time, showcasing one-of-a-kind and limited edition pieces. Additionally, CraftBoston features work by emerging artists from leading schools and universities, an artist mentor program, an educational lecture series, and informational booths promoting non-profit craft organizations.

Or you could be a VIP and shop CraftBoston before we open to the public. Follow the yellow brick road to a celebration with delightful cocktails, sumptuous hors d’oeuvres, and a field of creative CraftBoston artists featuring the newest and finest in contemporary craft. Glide through the show to the sounds of jazz with a cocktail in hand and bring home some fine craft.

5. SoCal’s Largest Carnaval Primavera Celebration April 9-11

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 5.35.42 PMFor the last 17 years, the Carnaval Primavera has been one of the largest Mardi Gras festival celebrations in Southern California. Spanning nine (!) full city blocks and lasting for three days, Carnaval Primavera will feature food from around the globe, as well as arts, crafts and commercial booths. As for entertainment, there will be live family entertainment on two stages, special exhibits, rides, and games. And don’t worry; the rides are for all ages. With upwards of 350,000 people expected to attend, the Carnaval Primavera is free to the public and a guaranteed good time for all.

5. Zoo Atlanta’s Gorilla Egg Hunt April 3

Picture 29Step aside White House Egg Roll, because Down South gorillas hunt the eggs. There are no baskets and no rules at this egg hunt at the Zoo Atlanta. Instead of little kiddies running around a lawn, the big Zoo gorillas hunt for the Jell-O easter “eggs” as part of this annual celebration. Cheer for your favorite gentle giants at one of the favorite spring traditions at the Zoo Atlanta.

5. Picasso & the Avant-Garde Exhibit Ends April 1-25

Picture 28The talent of Pablo Picasso cannot be disputed, but the word in art circles is it that his creativity was at its most fertile between 1905 and 1945. Picasso and the Avant-Garde exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art celebrates these inspired decades with some of Picasso’s most important works on display including Three Musicians. You’ll witness the evolution of his work from abstraction to Cubism and then to Surrealism. And since the city of Paris played a pivotal role in bringing imagination to artists from around the globe, the exhibit will also include works from Chagall, Jacque Lipchitz, Patrick Henry Bruce, and Man Ray.

5. New Vintage Wine & Gallery Weekend April 16-17

Screen shot 2010-03-24 at 5.36.51 PMWith an abundance of activities and some of the best wine, the 18th Annual Blessing of the Vines and New Vintage Wine & Gallery Trail is the place to go for a fun and relaxing weekend. To start off, there’s the free Annual Blessing of the Vines, where hundreds of wine enthusiasts gather to take part in a centuries-old European ceremony to ensure robust vines and savory grapes.

Then there is the New Vintage Jazz Wine Train, a two-and-a-half hour ride that happens in the evenings and features several Grapevine wines, dinner, and live jazz entertainment in each passenger car. The New Vintage Art Show features more than a dozen local artists displaying watercolors, photographs, pottery, and much more.

Finally, there’s the New Vintage Wine Trail, a memorable journey that visits the many unique winery-tasting rooms of Grapevine. It’ll definitely be a jam-packed and wine-filled weekend at this event.

5. Celebrate World Champion Yankees in SoHo April 17

Picture 24Right on the heels of the New York Yankees home opener on April 13th, the Pop International Galleries in SoHo will be celebrating reigning the World Series winners, New York Yankees, with the unveiling of the Official World Series Victory Piece. Famed sports artists Stephen Holland will be on hand to present another three works of art featuring the Yankee’s most beloved and feared players: A-Rod, Mariano Rivera, and, of course, Derek Jeter. If you can’t get the opportunity to see them play ball, this event is open to the public to allow everyone to enjoy at least a beautiful representation of the famed players.

It’s a Creative Whirlwind of Exposure at 111 Minna Gallery

Ask anyone where the latest in San Francisco cuisine, music, performance, Picture 11and most importantly art resides and they will tell you at the famously dynamic 111 Minna Gallery in SOMA.  Gallery by day and dance floor by night, this gallery changes every six weeks to embrace the latest in local, national, and international urban art.

With gallery space that easily converts itself into spaces for as little as 50 and up to 500 people, including the bar and dance floor, 111 Minna is the cities go-to for the hottest events.  And they’re here to showcase anything and everything in the world of art.  With Emily the Strange creator Rob Reiner’s exhibit, San Francisco’s Poet Laureate Diane DePrima readings, World-Renowned DJ Vinroc, and even the EAT street food pop-up restaurant every Monday night, nothing is off topic, too outlandish, or out of range for 111 Minna’s creative initiative.

Performance Art Is Defined At Lincoln Center

With a new fountain in place of the iconic plaza fountain, it seems that things are changing at Lincoln Center. Yet, one thing that has not changed for the 16.3-acre complex is its role as the world’s leading performing arts center. Home to 12 resident arts organizations and 26 amazing performance venues, Lincoln Center is the epitome of art and performance in New York City.

One of its most famous facilities is thePicture 33 magnificent 3,900-seat Metropolitan Opera House, which is the home stage of the world famous Metropolitan Opera and the annual Spring season of American Ballet Theatre. There is also the gorgeous Avery Fisher Hall, home stage of the New York Philharmonic, and the David H. Koch Theater, home of the New York City Ballet and the New York City Opera.

Lincoln Center puts on thousands of performances of music, opera, theater, dance, and multi-media every year by renowned artists from all over the globe. It has been home to ultra cool events like the MTV VMA’s and is the new home of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. Whether its orchestra concerts or authentic kabuki theater or opera performed with life-size puppets, Lincoln Center presents only the top of any and every kind of performance art.

Iwo Jima Memorial: The Picture Comes to Life

Picture 9Memorials can get repetitive at times. Sometimes, it feels like when you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. This is not the case with the Iwo Jima Memorial. Modeled after the famous photo of six soldiers raising the American flag during the Battle of Iwo Jima in WWII, this huge memorial is a sight to behold.

Also known as the United States Marine Corps War Memorial, the place is dedicated to all the U.S. marines who have given their lives since 1775. The 32-foot-high figures are shown erecting a 60-foot bronze flagpole from which a cloth flag flies 24 hours every day. The faces were modeled in clay after the three surviving soldiers who raised the flag in the photo. Overall, the memorial is 78 feet high. In fact, the canteens in the statue can hold 32 quarts of water.

Seeing the memorable Iwo Jima photo as a large, three-dimensional representation, the sight is truly spectacular. If you go at night, the scene is very powerful. This is one statue that will not seem repetitive and plain.

Bryant Park Has the Best of Both Worlds

Picture 6Watch out, Central Park. Sure, Bryant Park might not be New York’s most famous park, but definitely puts up some good competition. Here, it’s the best of both worlds: tall Manhattan skyscrapers surrounding a green lawn that features some of the most iconic New York events, like Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week and the HBO Summer Movie Screenings.

Just one block from Times Square, the park is a popular lunch break getaway for the suits and ties, eating at Top Chef’s Tom Colicchio’s casual ‘wichcraft or at the Bryant Park Grill’s enviable patio space. For those looking to relax and soak up the few rays of Manhattan sunshine, there’s free Wi-Fi access as well as intermittent racks of books (Bryant Park is directly behind the New York Library). For those with children, the custom-built carousel is a must.

Bryant Park is always alive; every season comes a new batch of highly anticipated and high quality events. In the summer, the HBO Summer Film Festival screens free films for those on the lawn, and various concerts, including the GMA Summer Series and Broadway in Bryant Park. If you come in the winter, there are the independent merchants at the Holiday Shops as well as The Pond, a free-admission ice-skating rink that has been touted as NYC’s best.

Rocker Jamie Jo Harris Parties at The Wall

The newest lifetime member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame is also an It Girl on the Miami social scene. Jamie Jo Harris is one part rock-chic jewelry designer, one part Kylie Minogue-esque singer-songwriter, so when she wants to let loose, it’s always on a dance floor, and more often than not it’s at W South Beach’s new hotspot The Wall.

Jamie Jo told citybuzz that if you’re Picture 33looking for a “great ‘in spot,'” then Wall is one of the elite places to go in Miami. Describing it as “very fresh and chic,” this lounge/club just opened in 2009 and is as sleek a club as the W is a hotel. Outfitted in a gold and black theme and refreshingly high ceilings covered with gold copper mesh, Wall sets the stage for a glamorous night of dancing and bottle service. The dance floor is nearly as spacious as the airy ceiling levels. The ever changing lights of purples, reds and greens against the wall is an added bonus to get you in the mood for a serious night of partying to hip hop and Top 40 mixes. If you’re lucky, you might even catch Jamie Jo behind the DJ booth, spinning the killer mix that has everyone dancing.

As one of the newest nightclubs on SoBe and with VIP events happening every week, Wall’s velvet rope is one of the hardest- and best- to get through.

*** Jamie Jo Harris is a singer-songwriter and founder of jewelry line, Belle Coeur. Jamie Jo’s latest album, In Violet, features the hit single “U Turn Me On,” featuring none other than legendary vocalist Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees.

Hotel Indigo Midtown is an Urban Nature Oasis

Hotel Indigo first unleashed its unique magic at this Midtown Atlanta location in 2004 and the charm has definitely caught on. Different from most hotels, Hotel Indigo is all about creating an urban oasis, whether it’s with fresh greenery in the guest rooms, the hotel’s perfect 1.618 ratio design as found in nature, or changing up the hotel’s look, feel, sound, and taste for every season.

Brightly colored throughout in soft blues and greens,Picture 7 there’s nothing drab here. There are many comfortable spaces perfect for lounging, because the goal really is to evoke a lazy Sunday at home on the patio, and Wi-Fi just makes it better.

Guest rooms are stacked with shabby chic charm; they are also cheery and brightly covered. No space is wasted so rooms are purposely compact. Spa touches haven’t been abandoned though- the bathroom might be tiny, but the pressure in the shower isn’t.

Venturing outside is easy thanks to its convenient Midtown location just across from the Fox Theatre and its close proximity to quite a few nice restaurants. Those who cherish the simple things in life without giving up convenience will easily fall for the Hotel Indigo’s considerable charm.

Gold Room is New and On Fire

Picture 17Before the law ended the good times at the Gold Club, the infamous strip club that scored national headlines, everybody who was anybody was there, and that’s exactly the vibe that the Gold Room resurrects. Still in the exact location that ironically boasted a church after its closing, there’s plenty of prayer-worthy, vintage inspired debauchery on the menu- sans strippers.

Taking its current inspiration from New York and Las Vegas, the Gold Room, with its sexy, dark velvet décor, aims to deliver the ultimate “ultra lounge” experience, even allowing VIPs to look down on the action from the window-encased second floor. It boasts a one of a kind champagne bar and an expansive signature cocktail menu to cure the most luxurious of palates. And, for entertainment, it’s not unusual to catch an aerialist with minimal golden clothing and dancers, outfitted in golden, vintage ensembles with flaming torches, on Saturday nights.

Monday nights are hip-hop cool with producer/music exec Jermaine Dupri typically doing a stint in the DJ booth. LeBron James and Sean “Diddy” Combs have dipped in then but others like Lenny Kravitz, Fred Schneider of the B52s, The Black Eyed Peas’s and even Ms. “Tardy for the Party” herself, Kim Zolciak of Real Housewives of Atlanta fame, have popped in on other nights.

This time around, everything that glitters is golden.