Discovery Center Summer Adventure Camp (July 1–Aug. 13). Each week during this Discovery Center summer camp, kids experience a different theme with exciting, stimulating, and educational activities built around it. Camp runs from 8:30am to 4:30pm, Monday through Friday, and the cost is $90 for members and $100 for non-members, plus a $20 registration fee. (352) 401-3900.
Ocala Karate Dojo Summer Camp (July 1–Aug. 20). Ocala Karate Dojo celebrates 20 years of summer camp this year with special pricing—four weeks at $95 per week. Camp, which is for boys and girls ages 5 to 12 and features karate lessons, self-defense, sports, and other games, meets weekly, 7:00am–5:30pm. ocalakarate.com or (352) 237-9076.
Gator Motorcycle Raffle (July 1–Nov. 13). Enter for a chance to win this custom Harley EVO V-twin 1340 Gator motorcyle and you’ll be helping support the Marion County Sheriff’s Office’s youth programs. Built by Florida-based Purple Chopper, this 2010 softail bike is signed by the University of Florida’s head football coach, Urban Meyer, and former quarterback, Tim Tebow. Raffle tickets are $20 each and will be on sale through November 13, or until all are sold. purple-chopper.com, (386) 490-0366, or (352) 402-6020.
God & Country Day (July 4). The Ocala Jaycees host its annual God & Country Day again this year starting with its annual 5K Freedom Run at Veteran’s Memorial Park at 7am. The race is followed by live entertainment, food, arts and crafts, and fireworks starting at noon at Golden Ocala. (352) 566-6623.
Red, White & Blues (July 3). Ocala’s downtown square is the place to be the day before our nation’s birthday! Join neighbors and friends for music, food, and fun from 6pm to 9pm. Admission is free and so are the ice cream and watermelon. ocalafl.org or (352) 368-5550.
Take Stock in Pets Golf Tournament (July 9). Don’t forget to sign up now for a space in the second annual John Jennings Memorial “Take Stock in Pets” Golf Tournament at Baseline Golf Course to benefit the Humane Society of Marion County. The four-person scramble begins with registration and lunch at noon, followed by a shotgun start at 1pm. The entry fee is $50 per person, and plenty of prizes are up for grabs. Deadline to register is July 5. humanesocietyofmarioncounty.com or (352) 208-7159.
Hunter-Jumper Series (July 10–11). The Florida Carriage Museum & Resort in Weirsdale hosts Horse Shows in the Park’s hunter-jumper series, which kicked off in April and continues through October. This month’s event is July 10–11, and the talented horse and rider teams start going over the obstacles at 9am each day. fcmr.org or (352) 750-5500.
IHOP Free Short Stack Fundraiser (July 12). Stop by either Ocala IHOP location between 6am and 7pm on Monday, July 12, and with a donation to M.O.M.S. Memorial Park, you’ll get a free stack of the restaurant’s famous buttermilk pancakes. The Memories of Missing Smiles Memorial Park, a five-acre park located next to Jervey Gantt Park and dedicated to parents whose children have died, is currently being developed, and its organizers are raising money for construction. ihop.com or (352) 369-6667.
Mr. Richard Concert (July 16). Bring the kids to Olivia & Co. Kids downtown on the square for a special, free concert at 11am by the popular children’s entertainer Mr. Richard! Richard Peeples, who was nominated for a 2009 Nickelodeon’s Parents’ Pick Award, plays more than 400 shows a year for kids and their families. (352) 622-4576.
Florida Fun Mini Match (July 18). This exciting ballroom competition at the Ocala Entertainment Complex will feature local dancers and their teachers as well as amateur couples. Guests will also enjoy a special appearance by dance champions Pavel Cherdantsau and Svetlana Rodkovskaya and a fashion show with consignment items available. Doors open at noon, and the event gets underway at 1pm. Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door, and $30 for VIP. Register online. dancedancedance.biz, (352) 748-3279, or (352) 266-0015.
Ignite Ocala (July 23). First Baptist Church on Maricamp Road hosts this non-denominational praise and worship gathering featuring author and internationally renowned worship leader Robin Mark from Belfast, Ireland, and all to benefit Interfaith Emergency Services. Admission is a $10 donation, plus one canned food item, and the event gets underway at 7:30pm. homilygrits.com or (352) 368-2417.
Green Power Rally (July 31). This nationwide demonstration to raise awareness about the need for renewable energy will be represented locally with demonstrators on the downtown square from 10am to 5pm. The optimistic, peaceful demonstration aims to raise awareness about the country’s dependence on fossil fuels and to call for more usage of renewable energy sources. greenpowerrally.org or (352) 454-8231.
Get Moving Marion County (July 31–Aug. 31). The Marion County YMCA wants you! The Get Moving Marion County event, which aims to improve the health of local residents, gives participants a free, one-month YMCA membership and challenges them to take 10,000 steps each day. From sports and swimming to exercise programs, the YMCA has planned a month’s worth of special activities to help residents learn about the easiest prescription for obesity-related diseases—exercise. (352) 368-9622.
American Masters: John and Jean Wilkinson Collection (July 1–25). Nineteen selections from the private collection of John and Jean Wilkinson make up this Appleton Museum exhibit now on display, including pieces by Thomas Cole, George Inness, and Alfred Maurer. Regular daily admission is $6 per adult, $4 for seniors 55 and older and students 19 and older, $3 for youths ages 10–18, and free for members, College of Central Florida (formerly CFCC) students, children 9 and younger, and active military personnel and their immediate family. appletonmuseum.org or (352) 291-4455.
The Appleton Biennial 2010: Florida Installation Art (July 1–Aug. 8). This exhibition features the two- and three-dimensional works by 12 artists from Cocoa, Gainesville, Jacksonville, South Florida, St. Augustine, and Tallahassee. The themes of the art range from political to environmental to the power of the media to the poignancy of old age. Regular daily admission is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors 55 and up and students 19 and up, $3 for ages 10–18, and free for members, College of Central Florida (formerly CFCC) students, children under 9, and active military personnel and their immediate families. appletonmuseum.org or (352) 291-4455.
¡Carnaval! (July 1–Aug. 11). Head to the Webber Center on the College of Central Florida campus for this exciting exhibit of all things Carnival. The annual celebration of Carnival is a cultural highlight for many countries throughout the world, and this display brings the flavors of the international holiday to Ocala. Gallery hours are Tuesday–Friday, 11am–5pm, and Saturday, 10am–2pm. (352) 854-2322, ext. 1552.
Passion for Deco (July 2–30). A special exhibit of work by artist Linda Harlow will be on display during the month of July at Bank of America downtown. In the more than 30 fine art paintings on display, Harlow brings back to life the stylish Art Deco era. The exhibit is open Monday–Thursday, 9am–4pm, and Friday, 9am–5pm. (352) 591-1080.
Lee Greenwood (July 4). Who better to help Ocala celebrate Independence Day than the award-winning singer of “God Bless The USA?” Head to Silver Springs attraction to hear country music artist Lee Greenwood perform live at 3pm. Greenwood’s other hits include “Ring on Her Finger, Time on Her Hands,” “It Turns Me Inside Out,” and “Dixie Road.” silversprings.com or (352) 236-2121.
Motown Magic (July 17). If you love the sounds of Motown, you won’t want to miss Motwon Magic performing live at Circle Square Cultural Center this month. The group will perform hits made famous by Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, and others. Doors open at 6pm and the show begins at 7pm. Tickets are $16–$22. csculturalcenter.com or (352) 854-3670.
Meals On Wheels Volunteer Drivers (Ongoing). Marion County Senior Services has an immediate need for volunteer drivers for its Meals On Wheels program. Currently some 450 senior citizens across the county receive meals as part of the MCSS outreach programs. Volunteer drivers must be 18 or older, have a valid drivers license, and provide their own transportation and automobile insurance. Meals On Wheels delivers between 10am and 2pm Monday through Friday, but volunteers can work as many days a week as they chose. (352) 620-3501.
Domestic Violence Educational Workshop (Various Dates). The Ocala Police Department’s Victim Advocates regularly host free educational workshops on domestic violence. To learn more about upcoming presentations at the OPD, visit ocalapd.com or call (352) 369-7139.
Rainbow Porcelain Artists (First Mondays). Come paint with the Rainbow Porcelain Artists at 9:30am on the first Monday of every month at the Rainbow Lakes Community Center in Dunnellon. No admission charge. (352) 622-7660.
Alzheimer’s Support Group (First Mondays). The Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders support group of Ocala will meet from 3–5pm at the Medical Office Building at West Marion Community Hospital. For information, call (352) 401-1453.
I.O.R.G. Meetings (First and Third Mondays). The International Order of Rainbow for Girls, a girls’ service organization for ages 11–21 and a pledge group for ages 8–10, meets at 7pm at the Marion-Dunn Lodge on 36th Avenue every first and third Monday of the month. gorainbow.org or (3520 867-1047.
Greater Ocala Woman’s Club (Second Mondays). The Greater Ocala Woman’s Club meets at 6pm at the Ocala Hilton for dinner on the second Monday of every month, and all women of Marion County are welcome to attend. The GOWC is a non-profit organization that promotes educational, philanthropic, and charitable activities. (352) 236-6226.
Green Market Tuesday (Tuesdays). Buy local, buy fresh every Tuesdays from 2–6pm at the Historic Village Shops of Dunnellon. Locally grown produce, fresh seafood, baked goods, herbs, native plants, and even crafts will be on sale. (352) 208-6789.
Greater Ocala Dog Club (First Tuesdays). Dog lovers, take note! Every first Tuesday of the month, the Greater Ocala Dog Club will meet at the Gander Mountain store in Ocala at 7pm. The AKC All Breed dog club welcomes new members and visitors. ocaladogclub.com.
Ballroom Dance (First and Third Tuesdays). The Ocala chapter of USA Dance invites the public to attend its bi-weekly dances at the Pioneer Garden Club on SR 40 in Ocala. Free dance lessons start at 7pm. Refreshments are served, and admission is $10. usadanceocala.com or (352) 558-4200.
Woman’s Club of Ocala (Second Tuesdays). On every second Tuesday of the month, the Woman’s Club of Ocala Day Group meets for lunch and a program at 11:45am at the Elks Club on 25th Avenue and the Evening Group meets at 7pm also at the Elks Club. All local women are invited to attend this educational, charitable organization’s meetings. (352) 629-7397.
Gluten Free Support (Second Tuesdays). Ocala Regional Medical Center hosts this monthly support meeting for those who have celiac disease, dermatitis herpetiformis, and/or any other gluten intolerance, or who would like to learn about these diseases. Meetings held in Education room 6 from 6:00–7:30pm. (352) 854-1100 or (352) 843-7116.
Ballroom Dance (Fourth Tuesdays). Every fourth Tuesday of the month, head to Skatemania on Maricamp Road for an evening of ballroom dancing as well as Latin, country, and line dancing from 7–10pm. With the $8 admission, guests receive a complimentary lesson from 7pm to 7:30pm and snacks. (352) 624-4222.
The Compassionate Friends: Bereavement Group (First Wednesdays). A monthly bereavement meeting for families that have experienced the death of a child. 7pm, Blessed Trinity Catholic Church Elder Care Building. (352) 369-6665.
Ocala Accordion Club (Last Wednesdays). The Ocala Accordion Club meets every last Wednesday of the month from 5:30–9:00pm at the Cherrywood Club house at 6253 SW 100th Loop in Ocala. (352) 208-5245.
Christmas In July (Thursdays in July). Members of Sweet Adeline’s Summer Springs Chorus invites visitors to enjoy Christmas music, friendship, and fun at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Summerfield while they rehearse for a performance at the Silver Springs attraction in December. The four-part barbershop harmony group meets every Thursday this month from 6pm to 7:30pm, and visitors are encouraged to join in the singing. (352) 442-8441.
Sweet Adeline’s Chorus (Thursdays). Women 18 and older are invited to visit weekly rehearsals at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Summerfield to learn and sing four-part harmony, barbershop style. The Summer Springs Chorus, under the direction of Judi Styger, welcomes anyone who likes to sing or hum, or has sung in a church choir or glee club. (352) 821-2778.
Circle Square Commons Farmers Market (Thursdays and Fourth Saturdays). Now open on the fourth Saturday of every month as well as every Thursday, the Circle Square Commons Farmers Market is chock-full of fresh, seasonal produce like blueberries, corn, herbs, oranges, and tomatoes, as well as baked goods such as bread, pies, and pastries. Vendors added weekly. 8am–12pm at On Top of the World. Free parking. circlesquarecommonsfarmersmarket.com.
KOS/Military Officers Association of America (First Thursdays). The Kingdom of the Sun Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America meets on the fourth Thursday of each month. KOS membership is open to active duty, National Guard, Reserve, retired, and former commissioned and warrant officers of the US Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Public Health Service, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (352) 237-3139.
Canoe/Kayak and Coffee (First and Third Thursdays). A fun social outing for adults in the great outdoors! This paddling trip takes place twice a month at various locations. Designed for beginners, but experienced paddlers welcome. Coffee and conversation follow. $5 fee includes equipment and refreshments. Park admission, if applicable, not included in fee. Marion County Parks and Recreation. (352) 671-8560.
Ocala Express Network of ABWA Meeting (Second Thursdays). The Ocala Express Network of the American Business Women’s Association meets on the second Thursday of each month at the Hilton Ocala. Registration and networking begins at 6:30pm, followed by dinner and a meeting from 7pm to 9pm. All are welcomed, but reservations are required. Tickets are $20 for ABWA members and $25 for non-members. abwaocala.com or (352) 529-2003.
Open Mike Night (Second Thursdays). Participate in or just enjoy an evening of spoken word and song at the Brick City Center for the Arts every second Thursday of the month, from 8:00–9:30pm. $5 for Marion Cultural Alliance members or $7.50 for non-members. mcaocala.com or (352) 369-1500.
North Magnolia Merchants Farmer’s Market (Fridays). From 8am to 1:30pm every Friday, the North Magnolia Business Merchants’ farmer’s market offers fresh produce, eggs, jams, honey, barbecue sauces, and homemade crafts to the public for purchase. The market is located at 834 North Magnolia Avenue. (352) 207-4551.
Silver Spring Shores Table Tennis Club (Fridays). Join members of the Silver Spring Shores Table Tennis Club at the Community Center on Silver Road in Ocala every Friday from 12pm to 3pm. Table tennis is a great way to get exercise and socialize with friends. (352) 687-0164.
First Friday Art Walk (First Fridays). Mark your calendars! On the first Friday of the every month, this art walk through downtown Ocala will feature artwork, artists on-site, and live demonstrations. Admission is free. 6–8pm. (352) 629-8444.
Gospel Open Mike Night (First Fridays). If you can play gospel music, head to the Forest Assembly of God located at 17530 E. Hwy. 40 in Silver Springs for Open Mike Night every first Friday of the month at 6:30pm. (352) 230-1253.
Art Club of Belleview (First Fridays). The Art Club of Belleview was established to promote art in the Belleview area and bring creative people together. Membership in the club is $12 per year, and meetings are held at 4pm on the first Friday of every month at the Belleview Library. artclubbelleview.zoomshare.com or (352) 245-4728.
Bay Lake Blueberry Farm (Fridays and Saturdays). Bring the whole family to Bay Lake Blueberry Farm, located five miles north of Fort McCoy on Highway 315, and pick blueberries by the pound for your kitchen. This organic farm charges $2.75 per pound and sells vegetables, jelly, and other goods as well. The farm is open from 7am to 1pm, but customers are encouraged to call first to make an appointment. (352) 546-3834.
General K. Pulaski Club Dinner/Dance (Second Sundays). Grab those dancing shoes! The Belleview General K. Pulaski Club hosts a dinner/dance on the second Sunday of every month. Homemade dinner is served at noon, followed by ballroom, polka, waltz, and American dancing music from the Gen. K. Pulaski Band from 1:30–5:00pm. The club is located on 113th Street in Belleview. $13 for members; $15 for non-members. Reservations required. (352) 245-9378.
Ballroom Tea Party (Second Sundays).A variety of dance music from waltz, foxtrot, tango, rumba, cha cha, swing, polka, salsa, and merengue to practice your dancing. $5. 5–7pm. Dancin’ Around Studio on South Pine Avenue. (352) 690-6637.
Star-Gazing Party (Second Saturdays). See the night sky in all its glory. Join members of the Ocala Astronomy Club and learn about stars, planets, and more. Insect repellent, a lawn chair or blanket, and binoculars are recommended. Call the Silver River State Park in Ocala for exact times. (352) 236-7148.
Coffee with the Birds (Third Saturdays). Join an experienced birder for a mild hike through the woods in beautiful Central Florida. Bring binoculars, field guide, and bug spray. $3–$4. 9am. Silver River State Park, Ocala. floridastateparks.org or (352) 236-7148.
Free Self Defense/Safety Classes (Ongoing). Free self-defense and personal safety classes for women ages 13 and older and children ages 5–12 are now offered locally through RAD and radKIDS instructors. Call (352) 216-8452 for class times and locations. radkids.org or rad-systems.com.
Ocala Recreation & Parks Sports (Ongoing). From soccer and golf camps to tennis programs, T-ball, and flag football, Ocala’s parks are the place to be this fall for youth sports. Head to Jervey Gantt Park, Ocala Regional RecPlex, and the Ft. King Tennis Center are just some of the Ocala Recreation & Parks places where kids can get active. ocalafl.org/recreationandparks or (352) 368-5550.
Cactus Jack’s Trail Rides (Ongoing). Ocala’s only guided trail rides through the Florida Horse Park and Greenway trail system is now open! Guests can ride Cactus Jack horses or bring their own for a fun, safe, and affordable trail ride. Rides available every day. Teens and older. thefloridapoloclub.com or (352) 978-7656.
Marion County Mustangs (Ongoing). This new youth sports organization in town is now offering a new 2010 American Youth Football & Cheer program for ages 5–15. No weight restrictions and no redcapping. leaguelineup.com/marioncountymustangs or (352) 426-1100.
Dunnellon Library Series (Ongoing). The Dunnellon Public Library currently offers a wide range of programs at its facility for patrons to utilize, including a Master Gardeners’ series, family and consumer science programs, movie matinees, computer classes, a health series, and children’s story time. (352) 438-2520.
Florida Trail Association (Ongoing). The Central Florida Chapter of the Florida Trail Association hosts local hikes, walks, meetings, paddle trips, bike rides, and other nature activities every month. Nearly every event is free and open to the public. floridatrail.org/Chapters/central-florida or (407) 332-7790.
LifeSouth Community Blood Centers (Ongoing). The LifeSouth Community Blood Centers Bloodmobile travels to different locations throughout Marion County to accommodate donors. To find out more about the Bloodmobile’s schedule, visit lifesouth.org.
Florida’s Blood Centers (Ongoing). Florida’s Blood Center has an urgent need for all blood types. Giving blood is a simple process and takes under an hour. Every donor receives a mini-physical and screening with each donation. Visit floridasbloodcenter.org or call (888)-9DONATE for center locations.
Home School Outdoor Recreation (Ongoing). Marion County Parks and Recreation offers an Outdoor Recreation Program for families that home school their children. Activities can include guided wildlife walks, canoe and kayak opportunities, nature crafts, and outdoor games. Fees are reasonable and based on age and number in group. E-mail email@example.com or call (352) 671-8560.
Volunteer Drivers Needed (Ongoing). The American Cancer Society has an urgent need for volunteer drivers to transport cancer patients to doctor appointments. (352) 376-6866, ext. 5063 or (888) 295-6787, ext. 5063.
Moms of Marion (Ongoing). Meet friendly local moms to talk about your kids and have fun! Membership dues are $15 per year. meetup.com/momsofmarion/
American Cancer Society Support Groups (Ongoing). The Marion County chapter of the American Cancer Society offers many support groups for those affected by the various forms of the disease, from breast cancer to prostate cancer. To find out about available resources, visit cancer.org or call (352) 629-4727, ext. 5820.
The Ocala Horse Show (Ongoing). A major hub of activity in the equestrian world, Ocala now has a TV show dedicated entirely to the area’s horse industry. Tune in Friday mornings at 10am on Cox Channel 21 and every Friday late night at 2am on FOX51. Learn about important equine people, upcoming events, and much more. ocalahorseshow.com or (352) 746-1848.