Saturday, June 22, 2024

Your Week Ahead: July 30 to Aug. 5

Top Delray restaurants offer a wallet-friendly week, the Morning Loungers of Legends Radio perform Songbook masterpieces, and a new movie charts a family fallout atop dangerous mountain peaks. Plus, the Eagles’ Don Felder, the Art of Recovery Film Festival and more in your week ahead.


What: Joshua A. Douglas

Where: Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables

When: 6:30 p.m.

Cost: Free

Contact: 305/442-4408,

Political junkies have been learning about efforts to suppress votes since well before the last presidential election, and most news about voting rights continues to tap a similarly depressing, antidemocratic vein. U.S. election law expert Joshua A. Douglas takes a refreshingly counter view to this doom-laden narrative of voter restriction, with his new book Vote for US: How to Take Back Our Elections and Change the Future of Votingpainting a sunnier picture of our flawed system. Focusing on the people and institutions working tirelessly for voting-rights reform, Douglas’ nonpartisan, accessibly written tome covers issues such as expanding voter eligibility, improving civics education and easing voter registration rules—issues he will likely expound upon at his South Florida tour appearance on Wednesday.


What: Opening day of Dine Out Delray Restaurant Week

Where: Various Delray Beach restaurants

When: Varies per restaurant

Cost: $10-$40


Delray’s restaurants are the envy of the rest of South Florida, and now that the snowbirds have migrated northward, they are all ours to enjoy. The Avenue isn’t as clogged, tables are bountiful and reservations are often unnecessary. And to sweeten the deal for local foodies, our finest establishments will be offering discounts for one week only at the fourth-annual Downtown Delray Beach Restaurant Week. Always wanted to try Prime but your wallet isn’t as fat as the steaks? Now’s your chance to sample the city’s best gastronomy on a budget: More than 35 participating restaurants, from Brule Bistro to Bamboo Fire, from L’Acqua to Lemongrass, will offer multicourse prix fixe lunches for $20 and under, and multicourse prix fixe dinners for $40 and under. Even dessert purveyors like Proper Ice Cream and Haagen-Dasz have gotten into the action, offering special deals. Cooking classes, wine and beer tastings and food pairing dinners are also featured through Aug. 7, and for the first time this year, there will be happy hour and weekend brunch specials as well. No passes or coupons are required; just show up hungry.


What: An Evening With Don Felder

Where: Seminole Casino Coconut Creek, 5550 N.W. 40thSt., Coconut Creek

When: 8 p.m.

Cost: $25-$45

Contact: 954/977-6700,

Though it notoriously ended in acrimony and lawsuits, guitarist Don Felder’s fertile tenure with the Eagles included the writing and performance debuts of seminal compositions on the band’s strongest run of albums, from 1974’s On the Borderto 1979’s especially fraught The Long Run. Initially self-taught, with one of those great rock ‘n’ roll origin stories—after being inspired by Elvis Presley, he acquired his first guitar by bartering it from a friend in exchange for a handful of cherry bombs—the Florida native was invited by the Eagles in 1974 to contribute slide guitar to “Good Day in Hell.” The band quickly appreciated his talent and versatility, bringing him on board to transition its music away from its country-rock origins and toward a heavier sound. The Eagles’ greatest hit, “Hotel California,” was a Henley submission, and it’s still a highlight of his solo sets. He’ll play this, along with other Eagles smashes, along with cuts from his newly released solo album American Rock ‘n’ Roll.

What: Opening night of “Three Peaks”

Where: Cinema Paradiso, 2008 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood

When: Show times TBA

Cost: $8-$12

Contact: 954/342-9137,

German director Jan Zabeil likes to place his characters in inhospitable conditions and observe what happens. His debut 2011 feature, “Der Fluss war einst ein Mensch,” followed a white man adrift in the marshlands of Botswana. His follow-up, “Three Peaks,” charts the existential fallout of a blended family of three during a vacation to the titular region in the Italian Dolomites. The characters are Lea, her 8-year-old son Tristan, and Lea’s boyfriend Aaron, whose relationship with his potential stepson is fraught. From the perspective of a thriller narrative, there’s nothing like the snowy peaks of a remote and unforgiving mountain for both parties to fully come untethered. Go for the stunning photography and survival narrative; stay for the uncomfortable filial reckoning.


Manny Mendez and Vic James

What: Art of Recovery Film Festival

Where: Lake Worth Playhouse, 713 Lake Ave., Lake Worth Beach; and HATCH Center, 1121 Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth Beach

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Cost: Free

Contact: 561/889-7230,

Painter Manny Mendez and his colleague, photographer Vic James, both recovering addicts, believed in their art as an essential component of managing their recoveries. Knowing there were others whose art careers assisted their healing process during their recoveries, they formed the Art of Recovery exhibition in 2014 to give their fellow-creatives a platform with a purpose. That annual exhibition continues this weekend at the HATCH Center, but that’s not all: Three years ago, Mendez and James’ venture expanded to include a film festival as well, which takes over the Stonzek Theatre at Lake Worth Playhouse on Saturday with 18 shorts, documentaries and feature-length movies that explore the recovery experience. Check out the complete schedule at the festival’s website, and return Sunday for an awards ceremony for the top-rated filmmakers and artists.


What: Jill and Rich in Concert

Where: Palm Beach Dramaworks, 201 Clematis St., West Palm Beach

When: 8 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday

Cost: $35

Contact: 561/514-4042,

As the co-hosts of the Morning Lounge on Legends 100.3-FM, married couple Jill and Rich Switzer serve as ambassadors of the Great American Songbook, spinning an evolving playlist that encompasses Frank Sinatra to Michael Bublé, Ella Fitzgerald to Diana Krall. But that’s just the 2D world of radio: After hours and on weekends, the Switzers gig all around town, performing Songbook favorites, jazz staples and more, with Rich tinkling the ivories and Jill providing the smooth-as-butter as vocals. For this concert, which wraps up Dramaworks’ “Sounds of Summer” series, they’ll be joined by “surprise guests” for an eclectic program that will include a centennial celebration of Nat King Cole.

John Thomason
John Thomason
As the A&E editor of, I offer reviews, previews, interviews, news reports and musings on all things arty and entertainment-y in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

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