First Words — 06 January 2017
Three events that make the season special

By Mark Gauert

Editor & Publisher

I asked everyone this issue what makes the season special here.

Diving into a swimming pool in January, I heard, amazing Northern friends who won’t see free-standing water until Memorial Day.

Teeing off down a fairway in February, amazing Northern friends who won’t see anything green until spring.

Going out to a ball game in March, amazing Northern friends who won’t see a first pitch until Opening Day in April.

On and on everyone went: Snorkeling on reefs, sipping champagne on polo grounds, seeing Big Name stars at sold-out shows because they’d rather be here than, say, Madison Square Garden or Severance Hall or any place cold, dark and snowbound.

All while amazing Northern friends with selfies from, say, a convertible on the bridge down to the Keys, or with toes in cool sand on Fort Lauderdale Beach or strolling Las Olas or Atlantic Avenue or the Broadwalk in just shorts, shirtsleeves and sunshine while our Northern friends are in galoshes, Gore-Tex and gray.

We amaze our Northern friends with posts such as these. (Maybe even infuriate them).

So we should not be amazed when they come here and crowd our roads, our restaurants, our guest rooms.

Infuriating? We started it.

I asked everyone this issue what makes the season special here, and they asked me the same question, too. So, ok.

All of the above, and these three – which, full disclosure, City & Shore also happens to sponsor:

The Broward College Speaker Series, which kicks off this month in Fort Lauderdale. For three months running, we don’t have to go any farther than the Broward Center for the Performing Arts to hear some of the most thought-provoking, funny and poignant speakers in the nation. CNN political analyst Ana Navarro kicks off the series Jan. 23, followed by legendary newsman Ted Koppel on Feb. 22 and TEDx phenomenon Angela Duckworth wraps it all up April 5 with “True Grit: The Science of Success. Who succeeds in life?” (954-462-0222, 

The Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance, Feb. 10-12. If you love cars – or even if you consider them only a way for your Northern friends to get here – there’s no better way to spend a long mid-February weekend than in the company of the good people who restore their cars to classic grandeur and roll them out on the elegant greens at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. Sip a mimosa in the dining tents Sunday morning and stroll among the Best in Class winners. It’s always a kick to see the Big Name entertainer from Saturday night’s gala in the crowd, too. Jay Leno was here for last year’s 10th Anniversary; this year, Jeff Foxworthy takes the wheel. (954-537-1010,

The American Fine Wine Invitational Gala. Each winter for the past 10 years, some of the greatest winemakers in the country have come here – not Napa, not Sonoma – to pour their wines at our own home-grown wine event, decanting April 29 at the Design Center of the Americas (DCOTA). The AFWI’s 10th anniversary promises to be an especially good year, with over 800 wines entered into the competition. The food’s carefully paired with the wines, the music’s carefully chosen to encourage dancing – and the wines are all carefully chosen from the competition to nurture an appreciation for American wines. (561-504-0206,

Three events that make the season special here. Three more ways to amaze your friends up North, before – or after – they come down and claim the couch.

Mark Gauert,

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