Films to Watch
Murder on the Orient Express
Everyone loves a mystery, especially when it looks this opulent and features a truly all-star cast that includes Kenneth Branagh, Dame Judi Dench, Michelle Pfeiffer, Penélope Cruz and Johnny Depp. Based on one of Agatha Christie’s most famous novels, Murder on the Orient Express tells the story of 13 strangers trapped on a train and the hunt to unmask the murderer among them. Originally adapted for the big screen 43 years ago, this version is less “drawing room mystery” in favor of the more macabre aspects of the novel.
Based on RJ Palacio’s bestselling book of the same name, Wonder is a powerful and heart-warming meditation on human nature and our capacity for both incredible kindness and disturbing cruelty. The film follows 10-year-old Auggie Pullman, who suffers from a genetic disorder that causes severe facial deformities and many other health issues. After 27 surgeries to help him see, breathe and hear, Auggie is entering public school for the first time as a fifth-grader. Julia Roberts stars as his mother and when she utters, “Please make them be nice to him,” to on screen-husband Owen Wilson, she manifests every parent’s most primal fear about their own child’s vulnerabilities. Ironically, Palacio wrote the book after she herself panicked and hurried her children away from a child with facial deformities. So when one of Auggie’s teachers states, “Who is it that I aspire to be? That is the question we should be asking ourselves all the time,” it seems to be the core of this uplifting tale about finding the courage to stand out for who you are rather than blending into the crowd.
Keep It Local
The Ocala Jockey Club International 3-Day Event
November 16-19, Reddick
Last year, the Ocala Jockey Club brought its vision of an international-level eventing course to Ocala. The family-friendly event drew crowds to see a full roster of riders compete. We caught up with Shelley Page, organizer, and Pavla Nygaard, owner of the Ocala Jockey Club, to get the scoop.
What makes this such a special event? This event is a stepping stone for competitors onto the world stage. Riders compete horses that are on their way to the 2018 World Equestrian Games and/or the 2020 Olympic Games. Eventing is one of the few Olympic sports where men and women compete alongside one another as equals.
What is eventing exactly? Eventing is best described as an equestrian triathlon. The sport is comprised of three phases: dressage, cross country and show jumping.
What else can we expect? The event will also feature an Annual Fall Family Festival with holiday shopping, entertainment and a kids’ play area with games and prizes. Admission for kids 16 and younger is free. Adult admission is free on Thursday, $5 on Friday, $10 on Saturday and Sunday. Parking is $5. Packages are available from $25 for adult admission, parking and an event program. The $75 family/group package covers admission for all occupants of one single-family vehicle, parking and two event programs.
Your property is so beautiful. What other sorts of events go on here? Aside from this annual eventing competition, the OJC Clubhouse is available as a wedding venue or conference center. The 924-acre Ocala Jockey Club also serves as a Thoroughbred training center, and there is a 35-townhome village as part of the farm complex. ojc3de.com
Trains for Christmas
November 25 and 26, 8am-3pm, Meadowbrook Church, Ocala
Enjoy an up-close look back at trains of the past at the Meadowbrook Church Model Railroaders annual show. The event, sure to bring out the kid in all of us, will take place in the gymnasium behind Meadowbrook Church. Admission is free. mbcocala.com
Downtown To Dos
November 3 › First Friday Art Walk, downtown Ocala, 6pm
November 3-4 › Fenrir’s Mayhem, Citizens’ Circle, 4pm
November 9 › Salvation Army Red Kettle Kickoff, downtown Ocala, 12pm
November 11 › Wild Side 5K, Citizens’ Circle, 8am
November 18 › Light Up Ocala, downtown Ocala, 4pm
Arts, Crafts and Culture
Upcoming Exhibits At The Appleton › Mysteries of the Amazon: Visionary Artwork of Pablo Amaringo and His Students will feature approximately 95 paintings by Peruvian artist Pablo Amaringo and his students from the collection of Scott Olsen, Ph.D., on display through January 14. appletonmuseum.org or (352) 291-4455.
Autumn Gift Market (November 4-5) › The Junior League of Ocala will host the 22nd Annual Autumn Gift Market at the Hilton Ocala. Admission is $5, and proceeds benefit Ocala Recreation and Parks to help build, replace and maintain playground and park equipment. juniorleagueofocala.com.
Night at the Museum (November 10) › The Discovery Center will host a family-friendly event featuring hands-on activities for children ages 5-9. Registration is $15 per child. mydiscoverycenter.org or (352) 401-3900.
Arts and Crafts Fair (November 11) › An arts and crafts fair will be held at the Spruce Creek Preserve from 9am-1pm. The event will also include a bake sale and a free craft drawing every 20 minutes. Admission is free. (352) 861-0159.
Steel Drum Concert (November 12) › Countryside Presbyterian Church will host a steel drum concert. The concert will begin at 3pm, and admission is free. (614) 312-2599.
SummerGlen Holiday and Craft Fair (November 18) › SummerGlen will host their annual Holiday and Craft Fair from 9am-2pm. The event will feature numerous vendors, door prizes and refreshments. (352) 307-1532.
Dunnellon Concert Singers (November 19) › The Dunnellon Concert Singers will perform a Rodgers and Hammerstein retrospective concert at the St. Stephen Episcopal Church at 3pm. Admission is free. (352) 419-8796.
Outdoor & Athletic Endeavors
Group Bike Rides (Ongoing) › Brick City Bicycles offers group bike rides throughout the week and weekend. brickcitybicycles.com or (352) 369-9400.
Kayak Outings (Ongoing) › Marion County Parks and Recreation will host several kayak outings for children and adults. marioncountyfl.org or (352) 671-8560.
Walk For Life (November 4) › The Women’s Pregnancy Center will host their annual fundraiser at Tuscawilla Park beginning at 8am. (352) 351-1294.
Run With The Law 5K (November 4) › The Marion Therapeutic Riding Association will host a 5K event at the Baseline Trailhead. The Ocala Police Department and Marion County Sheriff’s Office are holding a contest to see who can sign up the most runners for their team. All proceeds will benefit the therapeutic horseback riding programs. The event will begin at 8am. mtraocala.org or (352) 732-7300.
Fall Senior Fishing Derby (November 6) › A fishing derby will take place at Tuscawilla Park for adults ages 50 and over. The event runs 9am-noon, and admission is free. ocalafl.org or (352) 401-3816.
Wild Side 5K (November 11) › A 5K run to benefit Forest Animal Rescue will take place at Citizens’ Circle at 8am. Runners are encouraged to dress in animal or safari costume. wildside5k.org or (352)625-7377.
Audubon Bird Hike (November 11) › The Marion Audubon Society will host a free hike beginning at the Fort King Historic Landmark at 8am. The hike will encounter various native bird species. ocalafl.org or (352) 368-5535.
Sangria Dash 5K (November 11) › The Island Grove Wine Company will host a 5K walk/run to benefit the Cross Creek Volunteer Fire Department. The event will begin and end at the winery’s historic 1897 cracker house. Registration is $40 through November 10 and $50 on race day. islandgrovewinecompany.com or (352) 481-9463.
Critter Trail 5K (November 18) › The 4th Annual Critter Trail 5K Run/Walk presented by The Friends of Silver Springs State Park will take place at 9:30am. The course winds through the trails of Silver Springs State Park. Registration is $30, and proceeds benefit the conservation of the park. thefriendsofsilversprings.org or (352) 236-7149.
Nature Hike (November 18) › A guided nature hike through Silver Springs State Park will take place the third Saturday of each month through May. Each hike will start from a different location in the park and focus on different plants and wildlife. Free with park admission. silversprings.com or (352) 236-7148.
Turkey Trot 5K/10K (November 23) › This annual Thanksgiving day 5K or 10K tradition is now in its 22nd year. All events start and end at the Frank Deluca YMCA. Additional activities for 2017 include a youth dodgeball tournament, an outdoor cycling class, the Turkey Burner specialty group exercise class and a virtual run for both races. Register online at https://runsignup.com/Race/FL/Ocala/ymcaocalaturkeytrot. Starting November 20, register only at the YMCA.
Out Of The Darkness Walk (December 2) › The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention will host a walk to bring awareness to suicide prevention. The walk will be held at Jervey Gantt Park. Registration starts at 8:30am, and the walk beings at 10am. afsp.org/ocala or (352) 817-8972.
Other Fun Stuff!
Ocala Health Events › A diabetes support group will be held November 1. A seminar on veteran benefits will take place November 7 followed by a veteran reception and recognition. Two seminars discussing diabetes and constipation will take place on November 8, and a smoking cessation support group will be held November 14. All programs will be held at the Senior Wellness Community Center in Ocala. Advanced registration is required. ocalahealthsystem.com or call (800) 530-1188.
Marion County Chili Cook-off (November 4) › The 36th Annual Marion County Chili Cook-off will take place November 4 at the Southeastern Livestock Pavilion. The event will include over 60 varieties of chili, salsa and dessert competitions, live entertainment and more. The event runs 10am-5pm, and admission is $5 for adults, $3 for students and seniors, and $1 for children 3-12. Proceeds benefit The Cornerstone School. marioncountychilicookoff.org or (352) 804-2450.
Gospel Jamboree Fundraiser (November 4) › The Child Evangelism Fellowship will host a Gospel Jamboree fundraising event at the Central Christian Church of Ocala at 2pm. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. (352) 629-2333.
Marion County Fair (Through November 5) › The First Annual Marion County Fair will be held at the Florida Horse Park through November 5. The event runs daily and includes live entertainment, contests, midway rides and more. For a complete list of events, visit the Marion County Fair Facebook page or florida-kids-helping-kids.com.
MAX Art Heist (November 9) › The second annual Art Heist presented by the Magnolia Art Xchange will be held at the Ocala Union Station from 5:30-8pm. The event features hors d’oeuvres, adult beverages and the art heist game to benefit the Magnolia Art Xchange. maxocala.org or (352) 629-8414.
Design, Decorate and Discover Series (November 9, January 11) › United Way of Marion County’s Women’s Leadership Council’s Women of Worth will host its 2nd annual four-part series called Design, Decorate and Discover that includes expert insights, hands-on activities and fun ways to connect with women in our community. All proceeds will benefit the ReadingPals program. (352) 732-9696 or uwmc.org.
Fall Festival (November 11) › The Island Grove Wine Company will host a fall festival featuring complimentary wine tastings, tours of the winery, a car show, vendors, food trucks and more. The event runs 9am-4pm. islandgrovewinecompany.com or (352) 481-9463.
Ocali Country Days (November 11-12) › The 22nd Annual Ocali Country Days Festival will be held at the Silver River Museum and Environmental Education Center. The event features old-time music, storytellers, historical re-enactors, traditional crafts and demonstrations and much more. The event runs 9am-4pm daily, and admission is $5. silverrivermuseum.com or (352) 236-5401.
Doggone Good Reading Program (November 11, 25) › Children ages 5 to 12 are invited to read to a Humane Society of Marion County dog at 11am. Children will select a book to read, which they can then take home. Advance registration is required. thehsmc.org or (352) 873-7387 x204.