Star Wars Weekends (June 1–13). Star Wars Weekends return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios with a giant gathering of Star Wars’ most popular characters—Wookiees, droids, Jedi, Ewoks, Queen Amidala—all roaming the streets of the theme park for meet-and-greets. disneyworld.com/starwarsweekends or (407) 939-6244.
Bikes, Blues & BBQ (June 4). Hog for Hope invites you to enjoy good music, good food, and an all-around good time during this special fundraiser at ARC Marion in Ocala. The event features a silent auction, raffles, and lots of barbecue courtesy of Outback Steakhouse. The fun starts at 6:30pm, and the winner of the 2010 Harley-Davidson Street Glide will be announced at 9pm. The $25 ticket price includes food, entertainment, and one drink. hogforhope.com or (352) 351-2479.
Ocala’s National Cancer Survivor’s Day (June 5). The Mid-Central Florida Oncology Nursing Chapter hosts this fourth annual National Cancer Survivor’s Day at the Ewers Center at the College of Central Florida (formerly CFCC)in Ocala. The event will be held from 11am to 3pm and feature food as well as support from fellow survivors. (352) 470-3427 or (352) 401-1247.
Caleb Fletcher Memorial CBR (June 5). Tough bulls and even tougher cowboys roll into town early this month as part of the third annual Caleb Fletcher Memorial Championship Bull Riding event at the Southeastern Livestock Pavilion. This event features cowgirls in a barrel racing competition held throughout the day starting at 7:30am. Admission to the barrel race is free. Gates then open at 6pm to start the bull riding action. Tickets to the bull riding are $12 in advance for adults and $15 at the gate. Admission for kids ages 5–12 is $8, and kids under 4 get in free. cbrbull.com or (352) 572-5589.
Shepherd’s LightHouse Yard Sale (June 5). Help support the programs at Shepherd’s LightHouse during this yard sale in the Wachovia Bank parking lot on Highway 441 in Belleview. Clothing, tools, household items, and more will be on sale, and hot dogs, chips, drinks, and baked goods will be available for purchase. shepherdslighthouse.org or (352) 347-6575.
Lions Club Train Show (June 5–6). The Ocala Lions’ semi-annual train show takes place all weekend long at the Ocala National Guard Armory on 20th Street. Admission is $4 for adults and free for children 12 and under with a paying adult. 9am–4pm on Saturday and 10am–3pm on Sunday. (352) 857-2874.
Workforce Connection Career Launch (June 9). Workforce Connection in Ocala has developed a new Career Launch strategy to help match talented job seekers with employers. On June 9, the session focuses employment in healthcare, public, and social services. The event runs from 8:30am to 12pm at the Klein Center at the College of Central Florida (formerly CFCC), and attendees must preregister. clmworkforce.com or (352) 840-5700.
Ocala Express Network Ribbon Cutting (June 10). This month, the Ocala Express Network of the American Business Women’s Association will celebrate its ribbon-cutting grand opening, and everyone is invited. At 5pm on June 10, the group will received ribbon-cutting honors from the Ocala/Marion County Chamber of Commerce poolside at the Hilton Ocala. Immediately following, guests will be served dinner and the group’s official meeting will begin. Reservations are required, and tickets are $20 for ABWA members and $25 for non-members. abwaocala.com or (352) 529-2003.
Introduction To Equestrian Drill Team (June 12). Experience the beauty and athleticism of two local, award-winning equestrian drill teams—Paso Espiritu and 2 Hot To Trot—at Cherry Hill Hacienda on 120th Street in Ocala. Admission is free with a $5 charge for parking, and guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating. The event runs from 10am to 3pm, and Tommy’s BBQ will be available for purchase. (352) 875-3334.
Benvenuto Benefit Poker Run (June 13). This poker run benefit ride will help raise money for Marc Benvenuto who recently recovered from a severe motorcycle accident. The day gets underway at Harley Davidson on Hwy. 441, with last bike out at 11am, and finishes at Ghost Rider’s Saloon on Hwy. 441, with last bike in at 3pm. The awarding of prizes will follow as well as a free lunch. The entry fee is $15, $5 per passenger, and $5 per additional poker hand. (352) 671-5801.
Father’s Day Dance (June 13). Bring Pops to the Belleview General K. Pulaski Club for a special Father’s Day event featuring the Northern Sounds Band, homemade dinner at noon, and dancing from 1:30pm to 5pm. The club is located on 113th Street, and the cost of admission is $13 for members and $15 for non-members. Reservations are required. (352) 854-6193.
High Seas Expedition (June 13–17). St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church presents this free “High Seas Expedition” Vacation Bible School from 5:30pm to 8:30pm for children ages 5–12. The camp includes a meal. stmattocala.org or (352) 629-5948.
Discovery Center Summer Adventure Camp (June 14–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 (June 14–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.
Mr. Richard Concert (June 18). Bring the kids to Olivia & Co. Kids downtown on the square for a special, free concert at 3:30pm 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.
Ocala Civic Theatre Annual Awards (June 19). Find out which actors and productions stood out to the secret judges during this season at the Ocala Civic Theatre. The 38th annual Harvey Awards gets underway with a social hour and silent auction at 6pm, followed by heavy hors d’oeuvres at 7pm and then the awards ceremony at 8pm. Tickets are $20 per guest, and there will be a cash bar. Reservations are required and due by June 14. ocalacivictheatre.com or (352) 236-2274.
Brides-To-Be Get-Together (June 19). If you have a summer wedding in the works, you won’t want to miss local business Organizing Agency’s 2010 Brides-To-Be Get-Together, “How not to ruin your wedding.” This free event takes place from 3:30pm to 8:30pm at the Paddock Mall and will feature a bride runway and showcase of different scenarios of what brides can do to avoid wedding disasters. organizingagency.com or (352) 216-7926.
United Way Day of Action (June 19). United Way of Marion County hosts its third annual Day of Action at the Ewers Center at the College of Central Florida (formerly CFCC), focusing on helping local families improve their financial situation through budgeting and saving money. The free Family Financial Fitness workshops will be held from 8:30am to 1:00pm, and the deadline to register is June 16. Lunch will be provided. (352) 732-9696.
Hunter-Jumper Series (June 19–20). 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 June 19–20, and the horse-and-rider teams start going over the obstacles at 9am each day. fcmr.org or (352) 750-5500.
Gordon Goodwin Big Phat Jazz Camp (June 20–26). The University of Florida hosts a landmark jazz education camp this month featuring Grammy and Emmy awards winner Gordon Goodwin, plus Eric Marienthal, Wayne Bergeron, Sal Lozano, Andy Martin, Bernie Dresel, Scott Wilson, and Brian Bromberg. Music students ages 13–18 are encouraged to apply as well as beginning-level college musicians and all community college students. bigphatcamp.com or (435) 851-6363.
Dog Days of Summer & Cats Too Party (June 25). The Humane Society of Marion County invites you to enjoy food, friends, and good times at the Muni Golf Course on Silver Springs Boulevard during this annual fundraiser for the non-profit animal shelter. The evening event, which starts at 5:30pm, will feature an old-fashioned cookout, music, and dancing, and tickets are $25 per guest. humanesocietyofmarioncounty.com or (352) 387-0737.
God & Country Day (June 27, July 4). The Ocala Jaycees host its annual God & Country Day again this year with the pageant scheduled for Sunday, June 27, at 6pm at the Holiday Inn Suites off of SR 200. Then on July 4, festivities get underway with the 5K run at Veteran’s Memorial Park at 7am, 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.
Family Fun Festival (June 19). How well does your family compete together? Find out at the City of Ocala’s free Family Fun Festival in Tuscawilla Park. The event takes place from 11am to 2pm and will feature crafts and kids’ activities in addition to three-legged races, tug-of-war contests, sack races, relays, and a pie-eating contest. Refreshments will be provided. ocalafl.org or (352) 368-5550.
American Masters: John and Jean Wilkinson Collection (June 1–July 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 (June 12–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.
Peter Pan (June 1–13). The beloved tale of a little boy who doesn’t want to grow up, the Lost Boys of Neverland, the evil Captain Hook, and their adventures together will be performed onstage at the Ocala Civic Theatre starting this month. Tickets go on sale May 3. ocalacivictheatre.com or (352) 236-2274.
Lola and The Saints (June 5). The popular doo-wop group Lola and The Saints bring the ‘50s and ‘60s back to life on stage at the Circle Square Cultural Center in Ocala. Doors open at 6pm and the show begins at 7pm. Tickets are $9–$11 for residents and $10–$12 for non-residents. ontopoftheworld.com or (352) 854-3670.
Barbershop Quartet Extravaganza (June 12). Four of Florida’s top barbershop quartets perform live at the Circle Square Cultural Center in Ocala. Doors open at 1pm and the show begins at 2pm. Tickets are $8–$10 for residents and $9–$11 for non-residents. ontopoftheworld.com or (352) 854-3670.
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.
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.