Everglades City kicks off the New Year with a smorgasbord of events starting Friday, Jan., 9 with the showing of “Everglades Odyssey,” a self-filmed documentary of the 10,000 Islands between 1957 and 1960. The film features extraordinary scenery captured by Barbara Home Stewart, a photojournalist, and her husband, Orin Good Fogle, a naturalist, during their 30-month sojourn.
The couple gave up all the creature comforts to camp out in a 12×14-foot hut with no electricity or running water to fulfill their dream of exploring the Everglades. They covered 3,500 miles in a 17-foot canoe over the course of their adventure. The film will be shown at the Jinkins Fellowship Hall behind Everglades Community Church at 5:30 PM. Admission is free but reservations are requested. E-mail ESHP@hotmail.com. This is the first in a series of monthlymovies to be shown by the Everglades Society for Historic Preservation.
Award-winning photographer David Lee Thompson will be on hand Saturday, Jan. 10, at the Pauline Reeves Gallery in the Museum of the Everglades for the opening of a month-long exhibit of his work. Thompson is a Florida native with 30 years of experience in photography. “I love creating art which is a natural and important part of my life. I have spent a lot of time over the past 30 years creating my works. I use a variety of mediums to create my art such as painting, photography, writing and computers,” he says. Meet Thompson Saturday 1-3 PM at the reception hosted by Friends of the Museum of the Everglades.
Check out some unique aircraft and chow down on pancakes Saturday, Jan. 24, between 10 AM-12 PMat Everglades Airpark. The first breakfast of the season is being hosted by Wings 10,000 Island Tours.
Finally, the Smallwood Music Fest closes the month on Jan. 31 with a cavalcade of popular musicians, arts and crafts, raffles and an auction. The benefit will be held on the grounds of the Road and Gun Club, starting at 11 AM and running until dark. Proceeds will be used to defray legal fees involving the battle over the access road to the historic Smallwood Store in Chokoloskee. Originally started as a trading post by Ted Smallwood in the early 1900s, the store is now a museum maintained by Smallwood’s granddaughter Lynn Smallwood McMillin.
Admission to the festival is $40 for VIP seating or $10 general admission (bring your own chair). For more information or to book tickets online, go towww.evergladeshistorical.org.
Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the first big event of February: The Everglades City Seafood Festival. Slated for the weekend of Feb. 6-8, the Seafood Fest will pack great music, delicious food, interesting arts and crafts, carnival rides and the laid-back environment of historical Everglades City into its renowned three-day event.
Friday night is quiet for families, although the carnival rides keep going until late. Saturday and Sunday have mega-stars on the big stage and a myriad of vendors, arts and crafts, food, as well as the famous souvenir mugs at the beer tents.
It’s all the fun of a country fair with live music and fresh seafood, so come on down — the atmosphere is always friendly and relaxed. Best of all, the proceeds benefit the rural community.
For information and a program of entertainers, visit www.evergladesseafoodfestival.org or call 239-695-2277.