Plus, Creative City Project is hotter than ever, times are a-changin' for the Magic, and a call-to-artists from Ivanhoe Village.

💐 These bloomin' beauties had everyone talking over the weekend

Plus, Creative City Project is hotter than ever, times are a-changin' for the Magic, and a call-to-artists from Ivanhoe Village.

By Katie Johnston

Hey there, nice to see you. They say time flies when you’re having fun, and how we just got to Tuesday from Friday so fast blows my dang mind. But here we are! 

My first question is what lucky ducks out there saw the night-blooming cereus in their once-a-year blooming glory over the weekend? I didn’t, but I feel like I did based on my Facebook newsfeed. Wanna know when the next one will happen? Me and you both. The first step is following this Night-Blooming Cereus Facebook group.

I spent the weekend with my super cute 5-year-old nephew (who doubles as Superman if you saw us walking around downtown on Saturday) and my Aunt Debbie who came to visit from New York City for the first time since pre-COVID. It was a few days well spent with quite the Orlando tour. 

We watched “Raya and the Lost Dragon”, feasted on Mason Jar Provisions, lost track of time in the Orlando Science Center, shared a french toast muffin at Artisan’s Table, sweated our way through the farmers’ market, rewarded ourselves with pops and ice coffee at Eola General, then split a ‘roni ‘za from Anthony’s.

All in all, a good weekend. And to think I kicked it off with a trip to Orlando Museum of Art on Friday for its Florida Prize media preview event.  I shared my experience over on the ‘gram but here’s a peek at what you’re missing. The annual exhibit is up now through Aug. 22. GO!

The Florida Prize comes around once a year and it really is a treat for all Orlandoans. Check out the exhibit feat. 10 of Florida’s finest artists now through Aug. 22 at @orlandomuseumofart. 🎨: @claravarasartist 📸: @akatiej for Pulptown | Wanna see your photo here? Tag either #pulptown or @pulptown on Instagram to be featured as our IG of the Day!

What Orlando is talking about

🌈 We’re nearing the five-year mark of the Pulse tragedy and a replay of “49 Pulses,” is just one of the many remembrance events happening around town. The documentary will air at the cinema inside Fashion Square Mall for at least a week though I encourage you to call ahead to ensure it's playing. (WFTV

  • Related: Speaking of Pulse remembrance events, the Orlando Gay Chorus is presenting “My Portraits of Pulse” with photographer JD Casto tonight outdoors at the Dr. Phillips Center at 8 p.m. The event is free but is first-come, first-served, so you’ll want to get there early to reserve your social-distanced box. 

🏀 Coach Steve Clifford and the Orlando Magic have parted ways after three seasons. In his first year, Clifford made NBA history when he led the team to a 42-40 season, a record-breaking 17-win improvement. He’s also notorious for playing veterans (and not giving Mo Bamba playtime). Fans sounded off on Twitter and reactions ranged from why Penny Hardaway would be the best choice for a replacement (that's pretty unlikely) to attorney John Morgan proposing to Shaq buy the Orlando Magic together. (Orlando Pinstriped Post, Bungalower

  • Related: Speaking of Shaq, here’s your friendly reminder that he doubles as a DJ now and has a set planned for Orlando in October. (Orlando Weekly)

🗣 Our friends over at the League of Women Voters are hosting not one, but two events worth checking out tomorrow. From 12-1 p.m., LWV-Orange County is hosting its monthly hot topic chat, and they’re talking about the “School to Prison Pipeline.” It’s a free event and starts at 12 p.m. on Zoom or Facebook. Then at 6 p.m. tomorrow, the LWV-Seminole County is hosting a free live screening of “She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry.” It’s a film about feminism and human rights. (LWVOC)

🎟 Creative City Project, the group behind the wildly popular Immerse Fest, revealed its plans for the 2021-2022 season, and there’s a lot to be excited about. Outside of Immerse and a re-up of last year’s “Dazzling Nights” and “Re-Charge” events, there’s also the all-new theatrical and musical shows “JOYBOX,” “Dragons and Fairies,” and “The Seasons.” (Orlando Weekly

🍿 CityArts is launching a new monthly film series tonight called Technicolor Tuesdays and the first film on the agenda is “Jurassic Park.” The event is free, but space is limited so you’ll need to RSVP to reserve your spot. The art org will be hosting these events on the first Tuesday of every month. Showtime is at 8:30 p.m. (CityArts

🐻 Attention parents (or aunts looking to shine): Build-a-Bear is opening a new location at ICON Park today. Kids love this place. While you’re there, check out the Museum of Illusions and In The Game, both spots have opened during the pandemic. (WKMG)


🖼 Learn more about the pieces behind this year's Florida Prize exhibit (Loch Haven Park)

🖼 Hear from journalist Renata Sago about her exhibit "Black Mary" currently on display at the public library (Eatonville)

❓ Put your "Schitts Creek" IQ to the test with trivia at Hourglass Brewing (Curry Ford West)

🍺 Join for Open Mic Night at the Copper Rocket Pub (Maitland)


☮️ Assume your favorite yoga pose for this outdoor class in the garden (Winter Park)


🗣Head to Rosen Shingle Creek for the 4th annual Civil Rights Award Ceremony, a yearly event to honor those in the Orlando community who have dedicated their lives to fight for civil rights and equality (Universal

💃 Put your dancing shoes on for "United We Dance", an event to celebrate the resilience of the community through music and dancing as part of the five-year mark of the Pulse tragedy (Downtown)

🎟 Dive in head over heels for this new performance from Orlando Shakes through Sunday (Loch Haven Park)

🍿Pack a blanket and a picnic for "Toy Story 3" in the park (Winter Park)

🗳️ Talk gender at this month's Winter Park Library Symposium with Banks Helfrich (In-Person and FBLive Online)


🗣Got some teens who could benefit from a support group? Get in line for this virtual chat (Online)

🍽️ Celebrate 28 years of Christner's by visiting the longtime steakhouse. All proceeds will benefit Aspire Health Partners to support much needed prevention, intervention and treatment services for our most vulnerable individuals with mental health, substance use and co-occurring disorders (Orlando)

🖥️ Goodwill offers job seekers tips for preparing for an interview (Online)


🛍 Support local makers at this pop-up Father's Day-themed market (Audubon Park)

🛍 Buy local wares from this monthly pop-up market outside of Will's Pub (Mills 50)

💃 Drag brunch was so popular at Island Time that they had to make it a two-day affair (Thornton Park)

🍿Grab a friend and head to The Nook for good brews and trashy movies (Milk District)

🔔 Engage in a moment of silence for the 49 bells for 49 souls we lost in a senseless act of violence five years ago (Orlando)

🎶 Celebrate Record Store Day with Swamp Sistas, Beemo, and Ten10 Brewing (Mills 50)

🌈 Unite with other Orlandoans at the Dr. Phillips Center to mark the five-year point of the Pulse tragedy (Downtown)

🎶 Head to Will's Pub for a night of hits from the Allman Brothers (Mills 50)


🎉 Celebrate Redlight Redlight's sweet 16 with good beers, good food, and great locals (Audubon Park)

🍽 Sample all the tasty international food trucks in one place (South Eola)


☮️ Attend this boss babe meetup and simultaneously learn more about meditation and how to make herbal teas (Winter Park)

🏥 Hear from Jessica Daly, Consumer Health Librarian with Orlando Health, on why men should have yearly checkups and take part in preventative care (Online)

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One more thing

Life is busy, folks. You're busy. I'm busy. We're all busy. It's why I write this newsletter (almost) every day — to take some work off your plate, to inform you and entertain you while also keeping you from experiencing information overload. And it's so easy to still miss something. Like Friday's IG Live with Orange County Library Systems where we chatted all things Adult Summer Reading Program (not to be confused with adult reading 😉) or Monday's episode of 15 Minutes in Pulptown. We talked with special guest Dominique Greco, former night mayor of Orlando (yes, that's a thing), about her previous role, the three Orlanodoans she's inviting to dinner, and her pick of the most underrated bar/restaurant in town. Then we broke down the hottest topics heading into the week and the five (okay, 10) must-attend events. Did you listen? Love it? Hate it?

Tell me.

Then tell me an Orlandoan I should sit down with next. My inbox is open to you —, subject line: Take my advice, Katie.

Thanks for hanging in there with me today. I'll meet you back here tomorrow, same time, same place. Capeesh?

– ✌️ Katie at Pulptown

P.S. Random fun fact but Universal just celebrated its 31st birthday on Monday. The theme park opened on June 7, 1990 paying homage to blockbusters at the time like "E.T.", "King Kong", and "Twister'. I was seven. As I said in the beginning, time really does fly when you're having fun.

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