Viewing posts from the Uncategorized category

Loving Art

Photo 01_Loving Art title graphic

By  Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on  February 1, 2015

How do you interpret the title above? Do you think of art that depicts love, or about those who love art in general? The art of loving, as portrayed in a variety of creative formats can be a very emotional experience. For thousands of years, painters, composers, sculptors and such have been creating pieces that encapsulate what they want to define as love.

In recent years, the Internet and instant sharing has enabled us to say, “I love you” in a many ways. In our everyday life, things that would have been unimaginable even 20 years ago are available right at our fingertips. E-cards and email deliver various forms of expression immediately. Social networking provides instant sharing of photos or messages that convey the happiness or sorrows in our lives. But to what degree does this digital sharing feel sincere… and how does it compare to the past?

First, let’s explore a famous piece of art that depicts a loving embrace:

 Photo 02 Klimt_The Kiss

                              The Kiss by Gustav Klimt

The Kiss (Lovers) was created by the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt between 1908 and 1909. The work was painted during the highpoint of his “Golden Period” It is composed of oil paint with applied layers of gold leaf on a square canvas. The image depicts a couple embracing, their bodies entwined in elaborate robes whose style is influenced by the Art Nouveau movement of the era, an aspect that gives it its modern, yet evocative appearance. The painting is housed in the Belvedere museum in Vienna. It is considered to be one of Klimt’s most popular and perhaps, most commercialized, works.

Two summers ago, my husband and I were lucky enough to visit Vienna during the celebration of Klimt’s 150th birthday. We looked forward, and with great anticipation, to seeing The Kiss with our own eyes, during our trip to Vienna’s Österreichische Galerie Belvedere museum in the Belvedere palace.

At the museum, there was a line of people waiting to view the piece. When it was finally our turn to step out of the queue to see it, my feelings were almost indescribable… but I will try. Swirls of Klimt’s paintbrush came alive. The gold leaf glistened. I experienced an adrenalin rush unlike any I had before. I stood there for a few minutes in awe. There were others patiently waiting their turn to view The Kiss. So I moved on.

We then explored the rest of the museum. It was wonderful. But something was gnawing at me. I had to go back… I had to see it one more time. We waited to see it again. But this time, I whispered to the canvas of lovers embracing, “Hello my friends.” My eyes covered every inch of the canvas hoping to remember each stroke of paint. At that point, I felt satisfied and was able to walk away.

Did the artist think that his piece would convey so much emotional energy? Did he anticipate it representing the “art of loving” through the ages? Of course, no artist of that era could ever imagine the commercialization of his or her work to the degree that it has been mass-produced. I’ve seen The Kiss on everything from mugs to pillows. The reprints do it no justice. Admittedly, I have both the mug and pillow and they are a reminder of when I saw the work in the flesh, so to speak… a reminder of a time when I was deeply moved. A time when… I fell in love with the art that depicted the art of loving.

Now, over a century later, we are able to create art about love in ways that Klimt, Picasso or even St. Valentine himself could not have imagined. As an example, the following video took nine months to create, yet can be viewed in a minute and a half. I am sure you’ll LOVE it and enjoy the experience. Happy Valentine’s Day.

News from Don Rob on Vimeo.  Or see the link below.



Live… Go… Do!

Top 5 List for February 2015

1) Pop the popcorn and watch the Academy Awards on ABC!

Photo 03_Brody_Berry Oscars

Adrien Brody kisses his presenter, Halle Berry, prior to accepting his Oscar.


On February 22, 2015, Neal Patrick Harris will be hosting Hollywood’s big night. It’s the Super Bowl of movies at my house.

For more information see:


2) Visit:

‘Women of Vision:

National Geographic Photographers on Assignment’ Exhibition at the

Palm Beach Photographic Centre

From now until March 22, 2015


“Women of Vision” features nearly 100 photographs, including moving depictions of far-flung cultures, compelling illustrations of conceptual topics such as memory and teenage brain chemistry, and arresting images of social issues like child marriage and 21st-century slavery. In addition to the photographs, visitors will have an opportunity to learn how National Geographic magazine picture editors work closely with the photographers to select images and tell a story. Video vignettes will present first-person accounts that reveal the photographers’ individual styles, passions and approaches to their craft.”                                             – PBPC Press Release


For more information call 561-253-2600 or go to:




3) Feeling generous?

Junior Achievement of the Palm Beaches & Treasure Coast Honor the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation

At the13th Annual

WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition

At The Kravis Center – February 21


Junior Achievement of the Palm Beaches & Treasure Coast, which empowers young people to own their economic success and reaches over 18,000 students in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Hendry Counties, announced that it will be honoring the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation at the upcoming Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition. The family friendly event will be held at the Cohen Pavilion of the Kravis Center on Saturday, February 21, at 6:30 pm.

“We are honoring the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation because it exemplifies the Three Pillars of Junior Achievement: Financial Responsibility, Workforce Readiness and Entrepreneurship,” says Claudia Kirk Barto, President of Junior Achievement of the Palm Beaches & Treasure Coast. “The non-profit organization raises awareness of the importance of music as a part of every child’s life and complete education. They strive to make music education available to children who come from families of limited means and provide performance opportunities for young musicians from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Founded by Kathi Kretzer Sayler, one of the originators of Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition, the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation also sponsors the Kretzer Kids, a group of talented music students who take turns entertaining on weekends at local nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition is the perfect event to honor the outstanding work of the Kretzer Piano Music Foundation,” says Ms. Barto.

On February 21, Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition will spotlight five musical finalists: Sydney Carbo of Young Singers of the Palm Beaches, Christina Layton of The King’s Academy, Katie Rodgers of The Pine School and Virginia Mims and Drew Tanabe, both from Dreyfoos School of the Arts. For the first time, all five finalists are Junior Achievement alumni.

Last fall, high school seniors from Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, and Hendry Counties were nominated to compete for a spot as a finalist in Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition. Over 40 students were nominated to compete, but after a vigorous audition process, the pool of talent was narrowed to the final five.

In the months leading up to the competition on February 21, the finalists will receive vocal and performance coaching from veteran Broadway performers, Jackie Bayne Gillman and Jason Gillman, and will have several opportunities to showcase their talent by performing at various venues throughout the community.

After months of coaching and practicing, the finalists will perform at the Kravis Center on February 21 for a crowd of over 400 guests. Competing for up to $11,000 in scholarship money, the winners will be selected that evening by the audience and esteemed judges, including jazz singer Donna Singer, Broadway actress Jodie Langel and Nashville recording star Monique McCall.

Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition also will include a silent auction, live auction, plated dinner, and a concert showcasing these talented young vocalists. Held in the Kravis Center’s Cohen Pavilion, the menu will be provided by Catering By The Breakers at the Kravis Center.

Tickets for Junior Achievement’s WATCH A RISING STAR Vocal Competition are $200 and Table Sponsorships are available. For more information, please visit www.juniorachievement.com or call 561.242.9468.

About Junior Achievement

Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through twelfth grade knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. JA programs are taught by volunteers in the classroom and after school in over 120 schools and organizations throughout Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, and Hendry Counties. Junior Achievement programs are funded through contributions from businesses, individuals, foundations, and special event fundraisers. Visit www.juniorachievement.com for more information.

4) It’s “Season” at The Norton Museum… Don’t miss:

Art After Dark



The Norton’s most popular weekly program – Where Culture and Entertainment Meet! – offers eclectic programming, including exceptional music of all genres, captivating conversations with curators, docent-led tours, art activities, film,  dance, wine tastings, chef demos, and more. All activities and performances are included with admission.

For more information see:



5) The Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County

Invites the Public to Several Fun & Informative Events

Pretty & Spice  – February 7-8

Book Discussion Series – February 10

Rhythms of Stone Lecture & Workshop  – February 12-16


Pretty & Spice

Orchids on Saturday & Herbs on Sunday

Saturday, February 7, 9 am to 4 pm

Sunday, February 8, 9 am to 3:30 pm

Throughout the Garden – Free admission

+ Orchids on Saturday

This plant sale offers a great opportunity to view beautiful orchid displays with a fun and informative lecture on topics such as Basic Orchid Care and the opportunity to acquire the best orchid and shade loving plants.

+ Herbs on Sunday

Discover the joy of herbs with special lectures, and demonstrations on cooking with herbs. Famous Chef Matthew Comsy will be here on Sunday in this specialty demonstration, participants will review ways of enjoying the herbs that can be homegrown, and sample some treats. Nina Kauder will discuss the benefits of herbs and raw foods. This promises to be a lively and fun demonstration that will encourage a healthier, tastier lifestyle.


Mounts Botanical Garden Book Discussion Series

Tuesday, February 12 – 7 to 8:30 pm

Clayton Hutcheson Complex – Conference Room


In partnership with the Palm Beach County Library System, this new series provides an opportunity for book and garden enthusiasts to meet together to experience exciting fiction and non-fiction titles related to all aspects of gardening and horticulture.  The featured premiere novel for this month will be The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan.


Rhythms of Stone

Lecture & Workshop

Thursday, February 12  –  6 pm to 7:30 pm

Saturday through Monday, February 14 – 16  

9 am to 3 pm

$400 for members; $475 for nonmembers

In this remarkable new series, DJ Garrity, the former Sculptor-In-Residence at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial, will explore the aesthetic and creative process of stone sculpting.

+ Lecture on Thursday

In his Rhythms of Stone Lecture, Garrity will present a visual illustration derived from his Nobel Laureate Series of portraits in stone and his book of the same title. He will discuss the historical background of the ‘process aesthetic’ from European Masters to the colossal sculpture of the American West.

+ Workshop Saturday through Monday

Garrity developed this garden sculpture workshop as a hands-on interpretive training program in collaboration with the National Park Service of America. He will lead participants with no previous experience through a creative process that uses traditional hand tools to create unique garden sculptures in stone. The program has been well received by gardeners, artists and the lifelong learning community.


To register for any of the events and workshops at The Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County, please call 561.233.1757.  Events at Mounts are accessible to people with disabilities.

About The Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County:

With a mission to inspire the public, Mounts Botanical Garden is Palm Beach County’s oldest and largest botanical garden, offering gorgeous displays of tropical and sub-tropical plants, plus informative classes, workshops, and other fun-filled events. The Garden contains more than 2,000 species of plants, including Florida native plants, exotic and tropical fruit trees, herbs, palms, bromeliads and more.  Mounts Botanical Garden is a facility of the Palm Beach County Extension Service, which is in partnership with the University of Florida and the Friends of Mounts Botanical Garden.

Located at 531 North Military Trail in West Palm Beach, The Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County is open Monday-Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. The suggested donation for entry to the Garden is $5 per person. For more information, please call 561.233.1757 or visit www.mounts.org.

Let’s Be Honest Here…


(The emperor is stark naked!)


Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on January 1, 2015

Emp New Clothes Stamp

German Stamp: The Emperor’s New Clothes by H.C. Anderson                         Photo: Wikimedia Commons

“The Emperor’s New Clothes” is a short tale by Hans Christian Andersen about two weavers who promise an Emperor a new suit of clothes that is invisible to those unfit for their positions, stupid, or incompetent. When the Emperor parades before his subjects in his new clothes, a child cries out, “But he isn’t wearing anything at all!”

– Wikipedia: “The Emperor’s New Clothes”

As we embark upon the new year, it is important to recognize that we must be selective when it comes to how we spend our free time. Spare time does not come easily these days. Obligations to our workplace, family and our own personal well being require most of our waking hours. When we choose to enjoy a particular form of entertainment, hopefully it is worth the time and/or money spent on the activity.

For example, last November, my husband and I traveled to New York City. In most cases I rely on reviews and word of mouth regarding show tickets I purchase in advance. I am usually pleased with the result. This time I did not abide by my traditional formula. Prior to the trip, I purchased two rather expensive tickets to see A Delicate Balance while still in previews on Broadway. My reasoning was “What could be bad? It’s a revival of a Pulitzer Prize winning play. The cast includes Glen Close, John Lithgow, Bob Balaban, Lindsay Duncan and Martha Plimpton… how can we go wrong?” Well WRONG I was! The show was stilted, poorly directed and tiring. Yes, I can still say that I saw a spectacular cast. But, that statement was not worth the price of those tickets. In retrospect, I should have waited for the reviews. Luckily, I saw a few more excellent Broadway shows that week as well.

Another great disappointment was the recent broadcast of “Peter Pan Live!” on NBC. I have fond memories of watching the 1965 broadcast (and re-broadcast) starring the late Mary Martin. In addition, my children repeatedly watched a tape of it when they were tykes. Over time, we all memorized every aspect of the musical. In truth, Mary Martin performed it hundreds of times in front of a live audience prior to the ’65 broadcast. Therefore, she was comfortable with the show and it seemed second nature to her. Unfortunately, the modern broadcast’s lead players, Allison Williams and Christopher Walken, who are known for stellar performances in both pre-recorded television and film, appeared awkward, stiff and unprepared. The lack of a studio audience further muted their act. The only lead talent that seemed comfortable with the concept of the live broadcast was stage veterans Kelli O’Hara and Christian Borle (as Mr. and Mrs. Darling). This, as in A Delicate Balance, does not in any way reflect the capabilities of the lead performers in other media platforms. I’m a staunch Christopher Walken fan and Allison Williams is terrific in the HBO series Girls.

In other words, the emperor was stark naked. So let’s say it… both A Delicate Balance and Peter Pan were simply bad! In conclusion, as part of your New Year’s resolution, I urge you to be honest with yourself. Be selective with how you spend your hours (and in many cases – your money)! Most of my adult life I have advocated for the enjoyment of the arts. Therefore, I suggest that you read qualified reviews, talk to your friends who have similar taste and do your research. Whether it be live theater, television or film – be discretionary. It is an investment of your time that is well worth the effort.

Still, I urge you to…

Live… Go… Do!


Top Five – January 2015

(Based on top-notch reviewers and resources)


1) Film:

Oscar season rolls around next month. I would highly recommend the following films prior to viewing the broadcast:

Into The Woods

The Theory of Everything



For more information see The American Film Institute’s (AFI) nominees for the top films of 2014 at:



2) Television:


After you take down the Christmas lights and settle back into the 2015 TV season, be sure to catch up on past episodes of outstanding shows. Some of the 2014 honorees deemed by AFI’s jury to be culturally and artistically representative of the year’s most significant achievements are:


The Knick
Mad Men
Orange is the New Black
Silicon Valley



For a more in-depth list go to:



3) Radio:


National Public Radio has been as staple in my adult life as long as I can remember. Fortunately for us, the best of their weekly broadcasts are now available as free podcasts. I would highly recommend you try out a podcast of any of the following shows:


Fresh Air (with Terri Gross)

This American Life

Says You

“Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me”

A Prairie Home Companion


For more information and shows go to:


Scroll down the list of programs. You’re sure to find a topic of interest.



4) Music:


NPR announced its list of the Top Ten Breakout Artists of 2014. You are sure to find some extraordinary talent amongst them. The artists’ videos are wonderful! Also included are stories and podcasts about each artist. There’s bound to be something on this site that will open up your mind to new music and expand your horizons.


Sample some of this exciting new (and not necessarily mainstream pop) music at:



5) Books:


As you all know by now, I’m an avid fan of Audible.com. But, if it’s a good old-fashioned book with actual paper pages or an e-book you’re in the mood for then check the New York Times bestseller list at:



Give a Cultural Gift


(Very little storage space required)


Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on December 1, 2014

Theater tickets

Great show, great seats!                 Photo: LH Baumel

We always have much to be grateful for. Commercial as it is, the best part of the holiday season is spending time with friends and family. Most of us feel beholden to exchange gifts with those you care for. Or, let’s admit it, there are those you are obligated to exchange presents with as well. Regardless of the reason, I want to make you aware of the types of gifts that require very little space, yet fill the heart in a big way.

December has too many holiday happenings to list. If you’re an Around Wellington reader then you are Internet savvy enough to explore the multitude of things going on in our county. Therefore, my “top five” list will concentrate on suggestions that will entertain and perhaps introduce a friend or family member to the arts.

There are many options for expanding the creative horizons of your loved ones. Perhaps treat them to a jewelry making, painting or pottery class. A museum membership runs about $75 but lasts an entire year. The possibilities are endless. While you’re there, treat yourself to something cultural as well. Either that or drop Santa (or your Hanukkah/Kwanza shopper) a few hints that you’d love to see a show or take a class or two.

On behalf of the Baumel family, I wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season filled with music, laughter and love.

Live… Go… Do!

Top Six Cultural Gift Ideas For December

In no particular order, the following suggestions can meet any budget. They’re eco-friendly as well!

1) Theater Tickets:

The Kravis Center, Duncan Theater and other Palm Beach County venues are offering extraordinary entertainment from all over the world. Ticket prices start at around $25 depending on the show. You can purchase a gift certificate and have the recipient pick their own show(s) or you can purchase tickets to individual shows online or directly from the box office.

For more information go to:





2) AMC or Regal Movie theater gift card:

December is the month that the big Oscar contenders are released in theaters. I love giving the gift of a night out. Recently, I purchased some movie gift cards at Walgreens. If affordable, couple the movie card with a gift certificate to one of our fabulous local restaurants. If you’re really feeling generous… offer to babysit, if the recipients are a young couple with children, or help care for an elderly parent for the evening.

3) ITunes gift cards:

ITunes gift cards can be purchased for as little as $10. It’s often difficult to pin down musical taste. Let your recipient choose the music they want to listen to. Everyone loves to pick his or her own playlist!

4) Audio or E-books:

It’s as simple as sending an email. Go to Amazon or Audible.com and give the gift of an e-book or audio book to an avid reader. If you know someone who prefers to listen to books during their daily commute or on an upcoming long trip, then an audio book would be the perfect gift.

5) Music lessons:


Donna and Steve Wiley of Village Music, with their dog Benji. Village Music is located in the Fresh Market plaza.

Do you now somebody who wants to play an instrument like piano, guitar or ukulele? Why not treat them to an introductory music lesson or two. Village Music, near the Wellington Mall or Melody Acres Music in the Wellington Country Plaza offers experienced, top-notch music teachers who take on students of all ages. Perhaps you know an adult who studied piano as a child and wants to pick it up again. Here’s the perfect opportunity to bring musical joy to those who wouldn’t necessarily buy a package of lessons for themselves.

6) Bootz Culture Camp VIP Passes:


Bootz Culture Camp in Wellington combines art and travel, bringing fun “destination” art classes to all ages. Check out our AW Spotlight story about Bootz Culture Camp! A VIP Pass to Bootz Culture Camp, valued at $30, makes a great cultural gift!

Bore Me… Please!


By Lori Hope Baumel


Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on November 1, 2014


01_March 7 96

The Baumel Family – Early March 1996

Before there were bleachers… we watched the horse jumping events from the side of the fence!

I have been a resident of Wellington since July of 1991. Prior to moving here my husband and I lived in the “Big Apple.” We loved New York City (NYC). As a young couple, very little was affordable for us there, yet, we always had something to see and do. We’re New Yorkers at heart and always will be. Fortunately, we lived in a subsidized apartment owned by the grad school my husband was attending. But, during the (Mayor) Dinkins era, NYC was a difficult place to raise children. Early on, our car was stolen and we didn’t bother to replace it. It was dirty, dangerous and too expensive for us to remain in the city after my husband’s training was complete. We had to decide whether or not we wanted to continue to struggle or find a place to live that was more child-friendly. We chose the latter.

For us, one of the biggest problems with “the city that never sleeps” was that the ongoing sirens and car alarms were so loud that my first-born son couldn’t sleep either.  After five years, and the birth of another baby, my nerves were shot. Tired of dragging the stroller up and down subway steps, I was ready to live in a place that was welcoming, had excellent schools and provided space for our children to run and play.

While we were in NYC, my cousin and her family moved to Wellington. Although, at the time, it felt like it was in the boondocks, my husband and I decided to check it out when visiting Florida. Wellington was pioneer territory. Most of the main roads were unpaved. In 1990, there were only two supermarkets. Major shopping and dining required driving an exit north or south on the turnpike. In spite of all that, like Lewis and Clark, we packed up our family of four and set off to Wellington for a trial expedition.

Wellington was clean and the housing was affordable. There were plenty of parks for our little ones to roam. Fortunately, our children were accepted into the public school’s gifted program. We found the synagogue to be friendly and welcoming. My cousins were active there and I felt an instant connection. Our third child was born at Palms West Hospital in 1992. After five years of renting homes, we finally built our own.

Much has changed since we arrived here in our little Village of Wellington. It has more than doubled its size, has an “official” large-scale mall and the international equestrian community embraced our town as the epicenter of winter events. Over the years, NYC changed as well, for the better. Manhattan and neighboring Brooklyn and Queens are crawling with baby strollers and hipsters. If I were to be given the opportunity to raise a family there now, I wouldn’t hesitate to do so. But then was then and now is now.

As an admitted cultural snob, in the pioneering days, my husband and I made an effort to find venues for entertainment. The Kravis Center and Norton Museum provided a plethora of opportunities. We had season tickets to all the touring Broadway shows and exposed our children to the symphony, ballet, opera, puppetry and modern dance. Wellington’s proximity to cultural venues was perfect for us. We explored space and science at the West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale Science Museums and hopped up to Cape Kennedy and Disney World as they grew. Over the years, we traveled with our children to other parts of the country as well. Living in Wellington was affordable and, therefore, it allowed us to use our expendable income to take family vacations. My husband and I made a deal when we left New York City. “When we can afford it, one day we’ll come back as tourists.” And so we did!

The social climate in Wellington tends to instill a philosophy of giving back to the community. I have boxes of newspaper clippings of community-oriented events that we all participated in. We built Tiger Shark Cove (the first time) and voted for the first Village Council members. We marched in the parades, judged the debate matches, were active in cub scouts, girl scouts and, as “Hockey Mom,” I endured the smell of hockey bags in the back of the SUV. We, along with many other parents, volunteered our various talents to schools in the area. Lifelong friendships have been made and our children remain in touch with many of their childhood friends that they have known since preschool.

Recently, the writers on the website Movoto.com wrote an article listing Wellington as the sixth most boring town in Florida. They gathered up all of the places in the state whose borders have populations of 40,000 or more. Then, they used the Census and business listings to find information about each town in the following categories: nightlife (bars, clubs, comedy, etc.), live music venues, active life options (parks, outdoor activities, etc.), and arts and entertainment offerings (movie theaters, festivals, galleries, theaters, etc.).

In addition, Movoto based their “boredom ratings” on food venues: fast food restaurants (the more the more boring), percentage of restaurants that are not fast food (the lower the more boring), percentage of young residents ages 18 to 34 (the lower the more boring), and population density (the lower the better). For a good laugh, here’s the article: www.movoto.com/fl/most-boring-places-in-florida/

Statistics, statistics. Ho-hum. Perfect way to size up a town, eh? If you scroll down while perusing the article, you’ll read that Movoto underestimated our resident’s interest in the equestrian community. I do not know one neighbor who is not proud of how unique and exciting it is when the “horses come to town.” I’m sure every town in Florida has customers in Publix wearing their riding boots, right? NOT!

Does the photo below look boring to you? Unfortunately, I was never trained to ride horses, but I count the days until the Winter Equestrian Festival arrives from January to the end of March, especially, the Saturday Night Lights events.

02_Winter Equestrian Festival

Take a few minutes to watch this incredible video featuring our Winter Equestrian Festival. For fun, you can count the 18 – 34 years olds in attendance:


2013 FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival from REPUBLICA Studio on Vimeo.

Here’s my rebuttal to the folks over at Movoto. The key word here is proximity. Besides wonderful Wellington restaurants like Oli’s, Kontiki, the Grille (and at least 30 more right here in town) with outstanding menus, our twenty-minute proximity to world- class nightlife, theaters, festivals, restaurants, galleries, green markets and a multitude of entertainment venues is incomparable. I didn’t move to Wellington to live above a bar or grocery store. That is why we left NYC in the first place. Also, our parks and recreational facilities have always been a priority here. Very few towns in the state or even the country can match the quality of our outdoor amenities.

“Mr. Movoto’s” statistics can’t possibly measure the excitement of Clematis Street on a Saturday Night or the beauty of a short drive east ‘till we hit the beaches ALL YEAR ROUND.  If we’re up to traveling a little further south, in forty-five minutes we can be in Fort Lauderdale (the spring break capital of the world) or in just over an hour we can catch the flavors of Miami Beach. Oh, and yes, I admit, our population of 18 – 34 year olds is 16.69 percent. No surprise there… our children received a great education here and moved on to colleges all over the state or to other parts of the country (as my own children did). It would be interesting to find out how many of those 18-year-olds return to the Western Communities to raise their families later on. I know my cousin’s sons did.

So, move over Movoto. Wellington is a great place to live, raise your kids and meet people from all cultures and walks of life. No one knows what the future brings. I cannot promise that I will remain here for the rest of my days.  But I do know one thing, no matter where my children end up settling…  they will always call Wellington home.


Live… Go… Do!



Thousands gather for Saturday Night Lights, Winter Equestrian Festival, Wellington, FL

Top 5 List for November

1) So I did some digging… lyrics, even silly ones, sometimes “hit home.” Watch these two YouTube videos:

Two versions of The Things I Will Not Miss from the 1973 film Lost Horizon.

As a child, this was a scene from one of my favorite films, Lost Horizon. A New York City girl, played by Sally Kellerman and a resident of Shangri-La, played by Olivia Hussey, compare notes on what they want out of life based on where they live. This Portuguese subtitled segment was the only YouTube source available. If you’re in a hurry, the song begins two minutes into the scene. The music is by Burt Bacharach and the lyrics are by Hal David. See:




The Things I Will Not Miss

Performed by the stars of Broadway’s Wicked

Here’s a more contemporary version: Julie Reiber and Katie Adams of Wicked, performing the Bacharach and David song The Things I Will Not Miss. This video segment is from the Bacharach To The Future BC/EFA and Poz benefit. See:




Proximity, Proximity, Proximity!

Here’s a list of things to do that are a 20 – 30 minute drive!

2) For the 18-35 year olds:

Need a laugh?

Head over to the IMPROV in West Palm Beach

 04_mprov WPB

Straight from the comedy stages in NY and LA, the IMPROV has always presented top-tier talent. I’ve laughed myself to tears there many times. 

For tickets and more info go to: palmbeach.improv.com

The IMPROV also offers comedy classes (5 week sessions) on Monday nights for an affordable fee.

Check it out at: improvstandupclasses.com

3) Laughs for all ages:

05_Comedy at LWP

SARGE and Vanessa Hollingshead at the Lake Worth Playhouse.

Mark your calendars in advance.

(Sorry you missed Judy Tenuta, I’ve seen her twice and she’s amazingly funny. Perhaps you’ll catch her next time.)

For more info see: www.lakeworthplayhouse.org

4) The Kravis Center Presents Comedy, Dance, World Music, Broadway and more…

 06_Last Comic Standing


Last Comic Standing Live Tour

November 2 at 8 pm  (Sunday) 

Season 8 of Last Comic Standing premiered May 22 on NBC.  The Emmy-nominated laugh-fest returns with an all-new group of the world’s funniest comics.  Watch the series this summer on NBC, then see the finalists perform live as the Last Comic Standing Live Tour appears at the Kravis Center on November 2. (For Mature Audiences.)

Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr. Concert Hall                  Tickets start at $15

Diavolo – Architecture in Motion

Jacques Heim, Artistic Director

November 7 at 8 pm (Friday)

Diavolo reinvents dance, re-images theater, and redefines thrills.  Performers take movement, athletics and daring to the extreme, creating abstract narratives through surreal architectural landscapes. Under the Artistic Director Jacques Heim, the company creates an almost cinematic experience of powerful images that develop conceptual accounts of the human condition, utilizing unique architectural creations, to provide the backdrop for an evening of dramatic movement. Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr. Concert Hall

Tickets start at $25 ∙ Only Orchestra and Grand Tier sections available

Beyond the Stage:
  A free pre-performance discussion by Steven Caras at 6:45 pm. 


November 9 at 7:30 pm (Sunday)

 DakhaBrakha is a quartet from Kiev whose sound is at once mesmerizing and mystical, melding soulful Ukrainian folk melodies with jazz and trance sounds. Aptly named, DakhaBrakha means “give/take” in the Ukrainian language. Mixing the fundamental structure of folk music with free-form improvisation and minimalist influences, this theatrical quartet of multi-instrumentalist singers creates a magical world of unexpected and engaging new music with Indian, Arabic, African, Russian and Australian instruments. Marshall E. Rinker, Sr. Playhouse – Tickets $28

Don McLean and Judy Collins

November 9 at 8 pm (Sunday)

 Few performers have stood the test of time as well as Don McLean and Judy Collins. Don McLean has had a long and successful songwriting and performing career. In fact, “American Pie” is widely considered one of the top songs of the 20th century. A virtuoso of a variety of vocal styles, Don can – and does – inspire a range of emotions with his singing. Judy, too, began inspiring audiences with her sublime vocals, vulnerable songwriting and commitment to social activism. Five decades and 50 albums later, Judy, who began her impressive career at 13 as a piano prodigy, remains a vigorous writer and performer of songs that create hope and healing and heart. She also stays active in social causes. Don and Judy will ensure that audiences enjoy a “starry, starry night.”

Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr. Concert Hall – Tickets start at $25

For the kid in all of us:

Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

November 11-16

Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA is the Tony Award®– winning Broadway musical from the creators of The Sound of Music and South Pacific that’s delighting audiences with its contemporary take on the classic tale. This lush production features an incredible orchestra, jaw-dropping transformations and all the moments you love – the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball and more – plus some surprising new twists. Be transported back to childhood and rediscover some of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s most beloved songs, including “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible” and “Ten Minutes Ago,” in this hilarious and romantic Broadway experience for anyone who’s ever had a wish, a dream… or a really great pair of shoes.

Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr. Concert Hall – Tickets start at $25
And there’s so much more… See the full November 2014 calendar at


5) On view at the Norton Museum

Master Prints: Dürer to Matisse


Rembrandt Leaning on a Stone Sill, 1639

08_Durer - Knight

Dürer: Knight, Death and Devil, 1513


The Norton Museum of Art is thrilled to present Master Prints: Dürer to Matisse, featuring astonishing works on paper including woodcuts, etchings, engravings, aquatints, and lithographs that range from the 15th to 20th centuries. This not-to-be-missed exhibition brings together several of the earliest as well as later examples of the golden age of printmaking. Works by old masters Dürer, Rembrandt, Goya, and Canaletto, will be displayed alongside those of modern masters Degas, Matisse, Picasso, and Cezanne. The exhibition is on view Thursday, Nov. 6, 2014 through Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015, and is accompanied by a video demonstrating printmaking processes, and texts describing the role prints held in society before the advent of photography.

“Each and every work in this exhibition is rare, and of a breathtaking quality that is no longer available on the market,” says Jerry Dobrick, the Norton’s Curatorial Associate for European Art.  “They are the best of the best – a virtual tour de force of the world’s finest prints ranging from portraits, landscapes, mythological and biblical subjects to scenes of everyday life – all created by the most famous artists of their time. “ He adds that, “This unique exhibition is the only opportunity to see these works, the NortonMuseum of Art is their only venue.”

World-class works such as German painter and printmaker Albrecht Dürer’s engravings Knight, Death, and the Devil and Saint Jerome in His Study from 1513–1514 (two of 10 etchings by this master in the exhibition) are examples of the stellar works on display.  A century later, Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669) created etchings with remarkable and subtle tonal ranges, evident in his Self-Portrait Leaning on a Window Sill from 1639, one of seven works by Rembrandt in the exhibition.  In this etching, Rembrandt portrays himself in Renaissance attire, taking inspiration from two 16th-century works, Raphael’s Portrait of Baldassare Castiglione, and Titian’s so-called Portrait of Ariosto. By referencing such esteemed artists and looking confidently at the viewer, the artist claims his position in society.

Of the modern masters on exhibit, Post-Impressionist artist Paul Cézanne (1839-1906) is represented by a color lithograph, Les Baigneurs (Grande Planche) from 1896-1898. Primarily a painter and draftsman, Cézanne was not a prolific printmaker. His print output consists of nine works in both etching and lithography. In 1895, Parisian art dealer Ambroise Vollard gave Cézanne an exhibition that was instrumental in promoting his work and establishing his reputation. This show coincided with the revival of color lithography in France in the 1890s, and Vollard was among those art entrepreneurs who commissioned and published prints for portfolios. Cézanne created several lithographs for one of Vollard’s early portfolios. One of them, The Large Bathers, was based on one of his favorite subjects – and his most popular painting at the time.

Henri Matisse (1869-1954) painter, sculptor, designer, and graphic artist, employed the technique of aquatint for the 1948 portrait, Nadia au Visage Rond, in the exhibition. One of the most economic works in its use of line, it is, at the same time, one of the most visually striking pieces in the exhibition.

For more info: www.norton.org.

09_Matisse - Nadia au visagerond

Matisse: Nadia au visage rond, 1948

Now You’re Cookin’… in Harmony


Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on October 1, 2014

Creme Brule

Autumn is upon us. Hopefully, the stifling south Florida air will subside as the cold fronts from up north move toward us. From the end of October to New Years day we begin a series of festivities and celebrations. In the retail world it seems like we skip directly from Halloween to Christmas, but for those of us in charge of culinary delights at home we start planning the festive meals. From pumpkin pie and turkey to Crème Brule on January 1st, our family not only pairs our meals with accompanying wines, we also put together an unofficial musical playlist from the moment we start cooking to when the final dish is cleaned and wiped.

The process of preparing a festive meal should be as much fun as eating it! If you are doing most of the cooking alone, as a starter, I would recommend some upbeat music to help you keep your energy level high. Are you a jazz fan? Try some Miles Davis, Dave Brubeck or Puppini Sisters while you are chopping the vegetables for the soup. If you’re more of a “pop” kind of person try some Jay Z, Katy Perry, Timberlake or Taylor Swift while you peel those potatoes. If you’re more of a “classical” kind of cook, then a Beethoven, Mahler or Brahms Symphony will definitely get you going. Just be careful not to cut yourself if you find yourself conducting the music with a cutting utensil.

When the festive meal is all prepared, it’s time to compose yourself, shower and get dressed. Best to put on some “calming down” music. It can be lyrical, but perhaps with a slower pace. I don’t know about you, but my guests seem to arrive within minutes of my stepping out of the shower and sliding into my holiday attire. If you’re expecting guests that prefer music from an older generation, trying putting on some Streisand, Sinatra or Tony Bennett for when they step into your house as you warmly greet them with the usual kisses and hugs. They’ll get such a kick out of hearing music that once was playing on their old record player. Of course, if you’re the oldest in the group, pick “arrival” music that suits the tastes of the ages of your guests. But, like I said before, keep the tempo a little calmer. You don’t want to get distracted, a headache or burn the green bean casserole.

I adamantly believe that the actual dinner music should be instrumental only (no vocals or lyrics). You worked very hard on the festive meal. Conversation is an important aspect of the occasion – especially if many of you haven’t seen each other in a long time. You want to be able to hear what your guests are saying. Also, the instrumental music often fills in the lulls that occur when people start eating and prefer not to talk with their mouths full. The style of instrumental music, again, depends on the tastes of your guests. Although, I find classical music like Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons” or something similar to be a perfect dinner music selection.

When the dinner is done, you want everyone to pitch in and help with the cleanup. That’s when it is time to pick up the pace again and play that “dinner prep” playlist one more time. It will get everyone’s dancing feet going – the table will be cleared, the pans will be washed and the dishes will be in the dishwasher in no time.

Now, if you don’t have time to even think of assembling a playlist or switching music gears as the day or evening progresses – plan ahead. Sit down with one of your children or grandchildren who will be attending and go over your music choices with them. Be specific about what to play and when to play it. I don’t know of one teen or “tween” who hasn’t dreamed of DJ’ing for a night. This will be their opportunity to shine.

The music that accompanies your meal may end up being the perfect ingredient to a successful evening. It will probably be the least expensive as well.

Live… Go… Do!

Top 5 List for October 2014

 1) Read:

Orange Is The New Black

Yes, it’s October and orange and black are the colors of Halloween, but that happens to be a coincidence this month. Piper Kerman’s autobiographical recollection of her time spent in a women’s prison is a wake up call for all who aren’t aware of what is going on in the American prison system today. This book is a page-turner (and in my case, an audible.com masterpiece read by Piper Kerman herself). Only slightly resembling the popular television show, this work is an immersive experience. Reader discretion is advised as the language and various situations require a mature audience. Advised for ages 21 and older.

2) See:


I was absolutely blown away by this film. It is surely going to be an Oscar contender. If it is no longer in theaters at the time of this printing then put it in your Netflix queue or search for opportunities to stream it.  The editing of this piece is pure cinematic genius. The movie is incredible as it seamlessly segues over a period of twelve years. Within the storyline I found myself seeing some of my own characteristics as well as biographical traces from the lives of so many others I know. It’s a cinematic first and tour de force that should not be missed if you are a true movie fan.

3) Listen:


For that festive meal “guest arrival” music you might want to give this collection a try. It has a little bit of something for everyone. Barbra Streisand has assembled a new CD entitled Partners. A compilation of duets with such greats as John Legend, Stevie Wonder, John Mayor, Blake Shelton, Billie Joel, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, Michael Buble, Babyface, Lionel Richie, Jason Gould (Streisand’s son) and a virtual remix of “Love Me Tender” with Elvis Presley.  I heard about it on NPR’s “All Songs Considered.”

To hear a taste of it go to:


4) For the little Ones:

Preschool Story Time: Fire Prevention Day

Presented by Society of the Four Arts

Thursday, October 9, 2014 – 10:30 AM

Palm Beach Fire and Rescue will be on hand to show the children the fire trucks and what they do.

For more information go to:



5) Fun FREE Concerts at: The Wellington Amphitheater

Chicago Tribute by The Brass Evolution

Saturday, October 11, 2014 at 6:30 PM

A Motown Tribute by Motown Magic

Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 6:30PM

12100 Forest Hill Boulevard, Wellington, FL. 33414

Contact: (561) 753-2484

Food Trucks will be on site from 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, bring your own seating!

 For info about more Wellington Amphitheater events see:


Music: The Serotonin and Endorphin Booster


Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on September 1, 2014

01_ Sept 2014

Photo: shirtwoot.com


A type of neurotransmitter that is found mainly in the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract. Serotonin helps regulate mood, sleep, appetite, learning and memory. Other possible ways to increase the levels of serotonin in the body include mood induction, light, exercise and diet.



In layman’s terms, endorphins are neurotransmitters that block pain, but they are also responsible for our feelings of pleasure. These feelings of pleasure exist to let us know when we have had enough of a good thing – and also to encourage us to go after that good thing in order to feel the associated pleasure

Adapted from: science.howstuffworks.com

Creativity, music, and wellbeing are inextricably linked.  Music has always proven to be therapeutic throughout history. “Being touched” by music and those who create it is not merely a metaphor. Music is everywhere. Due to the amazing digital age we live in, we can listen to our own musical choices any time we please.

Creating or performing music is engaging. It produces positive neurological effects on the brain in specific ways, especially affecting the human motor system. It can be physical and assist with coordination – like a drummer’s limbs all working simultaneously.

Yet, music can also be ambiguous and we are free to interpret it in an infinite amount of ways.It causes a wide range of modifications in the human body, including changes in heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, skin temperature, muscle tension and much more. Music can distract us from pain or worry. It increases the levels of chemicals in the brain that promote creativity and reduce stress (i.e. serotonin).

Creating music can encourage collaboration and social skills. It influences our behavior, what we read, where we socialize and whom we choose to “hang out” with – particularly teenagers. Studies have proven that children who study a musical instrument weekly (especially piano) for at least 2 years develop slightly higher IQ’s than those who do not have the privilege. Music lessons and cognitive development are not limited to children. In one experiment conducted on senior citizens age 60 to 85, music study improved their memory skills.

Steve Jobs regularly held “walking” meetings. Mark Zuckerberg does too. The serotonin released from walking makes a person more creative and productive. It also improves the quality of sleep and creates a positive cycle throughout an average 24-hour day. Whether you go out for a stroll, take a brisk walk or jog at the gym, music coupled with cardiovascular exercise is an enormous serotonin booster.

02-YSPB AW 9-14

Young Singers of the Palm Beaches. Photo: E. Baumel.Young Singers of the Palm Beaches

Apparently, participating in a community choir is also a healthy musical activity. The support system and commitment to your group are benefits specific to singing in a chorus. It gets you out of the house and gives you a feeling of belonging, of being needed and combats the loneliness that often comes with being human in this day and age. Whether you are in the chorus or in the shower, singing can have similar effects as exercise. The release of endorphins gives the singer an overall upbeat feeling. Bottom line – singing reduces stress and promotes a good mood. Some even consider it a mild aerobic activity, as it involves deep breathing, another anxiety reducer. Deep breathing is an integral aspect of meditation and other relaxation techniques.

03_Grampa Sam RX Small file

Grandpa Sam in his drugstore – Circa 1930’s

My grandfather, Samuel Davis, was an amateur poet and a pharmacist by profession. He filled prescriptions that, in most circumstances, made people feel better. As a trained musician, I have a “prescription” for you. Ask yourself the following questions:

How do I feel right now?

How do I want to feel in five minutes or one hour from now?

What type of music will help me achieve this goal?

What type of music will “lift me up” this very moment?

Then, you know how it’s done:

–          Grab your headphones or turn on the stereo and pop in a CD.

–          Or find a style that suits you on Pandora, iTunes Radio or your favorite radio station.

Within minutes you’ll be boosting your serotonin, exciting your endorphins and seizing the day!

Singing and dancing is optional, but likely.


Live… Go… Do!

 For more information on the subject see:


This month, instead of my usual Top 5, I have a simple request:

Do your homework!

There is an overwhelming amount to do and see this upcoming season.

Plan ahead. NOW is the time to buy tickets to concerts and shows for the 2014-2015 season. Get the tickets you want at the prices you can afford before they’re sold out. Here are the links to my favorite Palm Beach County Venues and sites:

1) The Kravis Center

Book of Mormon, Diana Krall, Pilobolus Dance troupe and more!





2) The Duncan Theater

       PBSC Campus – Lake Worth

Top-notch comedy, music, dance and family fare:


3) Eissey Theater PBSC Campus

       North Palm Beach County

Shakespeare, jazz, ballet, pop and college concerts… see:


4) The Lake Worth Playhouse and the Stonzek Studio Theatre

One of the oldest and most loved theaters in Florida. Check out their upcoming 62nd season. And don’t forget the valuable independent films that can be seen next door at the Stonzek.


5) The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County

A plethora of cultural events offered throughout the county.

Entertainment in many genres for all ages:



6) Don’t miss an exhibit. We have a fantastic museum season ahead      of us:

Norton Museum of Art: norton.org

(Note: The Norton Museum will be closed from September 8 – 23)


Boca Museum of Art: bocamuseum.org

The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium


For more museums and venues… see:


Barbie and I are the same age…

Lori Hope Baumel
Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on July 1, 2014

01_ Barbie - matchbox

… and “she looks mahvelous!” (a la Billy Crystal)

By Lori Hope Baumel

The very day this article is launched into cyberspace I will be turning 55.  I am elated. It’s a pinnacle age. Old enough to mentor and teach others what I’ve learned, yet young enough to continue to intellectually grow. My old companion, the Barbie doll, will be featured in a special exhibit at the Norton Museum this summer and, like many women of my era, it will bring back wonderful memories.

You see… Barbie and I were born the same year. By the time I was old enough to play with her she had become the doll every little girl wanted. The toymaker, Mattel, whose owners named her after their own daughter, hit the jackpot with their new product. The first dolls sold for $3 each. She was my companion during rainy summers when we couldn’t go outside or when no one could come over and play.

Barbie and I have seen so much change over the years. Unlike the children of today, I only had ONE Barbie, as did most of my friends. I was lucky, because, over time, I was given a Ken doll and eventually a red haired “Midge” (Barbie’s best friend). I was content to dress and create imaginary scenarios with my three, approximately, 11.5 inch tall pals. When asked what I wanted for my birthday, I often answered, “a new outfit for my Barbie.” The tiny clothes were sold in thin flat boxes that displayed the dress and matching accessories.

Controversies would ensue when little boys wanted to play with her as well. She grew up in the fastest changing era of our times and certainly had her critics. “Too perfect” the naysayers would complain. “Not a good influence” the women’s rights advocates exclaimed. Most of them were right. But, back in the 1960’s, I was a curly haired little girl who simply felt like Barbie was my confidant. She was the first to hear my stories, listen to my made-up songs and danced to “The Twist” or the latest Beatles hit right alongside me.

Over the years, Barbie wore more than dresses. She seemed to evolve as my own life and times evolved. When the feminist movement grew stronger, she wore bell-bottomed pants, an astronaut suit, became a doctor, drove a Harley, and sang Karaoke and rap. Her abilities seemed limitless. I would drop by the “Barbie aisle” in department stores and amaze myself at how far she had come up in the world.

In the mid-1990’s, my own daughter amassed her own Barbie collection. No longer did we buy one doll and outfits separately. It became the trend to buy one doll per outfit. Also a favorite birthday party gift, I’m almost certain we had at least 40 Barbie dolls by the time our daughter, Rachel, was six years old.  As a matter of fact, in 1997, I remember reading an article stating that Mattel decided Barbie’s waist size was unrealistic and they actually widened it. This comforted me, because after delivering three children, my waist had widened as well.

Due to the advent of video games and all the devices that currently are over stimulating the youngsters of today, Barbie’s popularity has waned.  Her appeal has been limited to preschoolers and kindergarten age children. A multitude of new trends have taken over the hearts and minds of the elementary school set.

So Barbie… dear old friend, as they say in the theater business, “we’ve had a good run.” You’re old enough to warrant a museum exhibit now. I look forward to reminiscing and visiting with you and your friends at the Norton Museum. I am sure you will continue to entertain generations of young children for years to come. Just keep evolving. Everyone remembers “his or her” first Barbie.

Live… Go… Do!

Top 5 for July and August 2014


1) Visit:

Wheels and Heels

At the

AW 15 Norton Logo


Wheels and Heels Guest Curator Matthew Bird, Associate Professor of Industrial Design at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Some 55 years after arriving on store shelves, Barbie dolls, Matchbox cars, and (a decade later) Hot Wheels cars, remain not only popular, but relevant. That’s quite an accomplishment in this digital era.


The NortonMuseum of Art’s 2014 Summer Exhibition takes a playful and in-depth look at these iconic toys – the miniature car, epitomized by the Matchbox and Hot Wheels brands, and the “teenage doll,” Barbie. The exhibition, Wheels & Heels: The Big Noise Around Little Toys, is on view through Sunday, Oct. 26, 2014.


The exhibition will fascinate audiences of all ages while looking at the history and impact of these beloved toys, which first found popularity in the years following World War II.  “In many ways, these toys helped teach Boomers to be consumers,” says Guest Curator Matthew Bird, Associate Professor of Industrial Design at the Rhode Island School of Design. “The first car or dress that a child fell in love with was a miniature, but the thrill of ownership was enduring, and informed how that child became an adult. Although we accept these toys as familiar parts of our cultural landscape, they were nothing short of revolutionary at the time they were created.”


To tell these toy stories, Bird has assembled numerous editions of the toys themselves, as well as vintage advertisements, design drawings, television commercials, and the marketing publications that helped fuel the feverish desire to have or collect these toys.


Visitors young and old will enjoy the nostalgia that this story invokes. As cultural icons, these toys are not uncontroversial; the exhibition will also look at their impact on society, contemporary art, and media.


Also, visitors will be able to view hundreds of related objects, including Barbie’s 1964 theater, 1964 college dorm, and a number of her houses, horses, and dogs. There are Matchbox racetracks from the ‘50s, ‘60s, and ‘70s.


As with last summer’s popular LEGO® exhibition, Block by Block: Inventing Amazing Architecture, Wheels and Heels will feature an interactive playroom. To add to the excitement, Museum admission will be free to Florida residents every from Thursday until Sept. 4, 2014.     – Norton Museum Press Release

For more information see: www.norton.org

2) Listen to the Audie Award winning “Audio Book of The Year” by Billy Crystal: 

Still Foolin’ ‘Em

(Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys?)


Screenshot from my iPhone – as shown on Audible.com app

Screenshot from my iPhone – as shown on Audible.com app


Hilarious and heartfelt observations from one of America’s favorite comedians. A look back at a remarkable career. Including the story behind his famous line, “You look mahvelous,” made popular by his appearances on Saturday Night Live. As wise and poignant as they are funny, Crystal’s reflections are an unforgettable look at an extraordinary life well lived. Narrated by Mr. Crystal himself! Also available in hard cover and eBook formats.

Audible.com is perfect for the beach or relaxing on a hammock this summer. I highly recommend downloading the audible.com app and catch up on your summer “reading” – the audible way.


3) Check out what’s happening at:


The Cultural Council of the Palm Beaches

Current & Upcoming Gallery Exhibitions
 601 Lake Avenue

At the Cultural Council’s home in downtown Lake Worth, 2,500 square feet of flexible gallery space showcases ongoing temporary exhibitions focused on art made in or unique to Palm Beach County. The exhibitions educate the public about art and artists, and provide exposure to artists in Palm BeachCounty so they can be more successful. The gallery features long exhibitions and each month will also showcase additional, one-person exhibitions.

Southern Exposure: New Work Now


Solo Exhibitions: Three Figuratively

Figurative artwork has been practiced since man first began to draw primitively on stone. This exhibition examines the work of Yury Darashkevich, Jacques de Beaufort and Scherer/Ouporov who paint the human form in varying media and style. Working on canvas, wood and glass, each artist paints figurative images that are purely representational, fixed in an emotive state, or derived from a mythological construct.

04_Council PB


Through August 16, 2014

For more information go to:



4) Go to a summer movie:

Summer movies are often fun and lighthearted. There’s a wide array of offerings for all ages this July and August. To see what’s coming up soon go to:



5) Have a laugh:

Legally Blonde The Musical 

Struts It’s Stuff At

The Lake Worth Playhouse

The international award-winning hit Legally Blonde The Musical is coming to the Lake Worth Playhouse. Winner of 7 major awards including the coveted Best Musical 2011 (Olivier Awards) this all singing, all dancing romantic comedy is about knowing who you are and showing what you’ve got!

Elle Woods can handle anything. So when her boyfriend, Warner, dumps her she decides to follow him to HarvardLawSchool and win him back. With some help from newfound friends Paulette, Emmett and her Chihuahua Bruiser, she learns that it’s so much better to be smart. – LW Playhouse press release

For more information go to:



  • Preview Night is Thursday, July 10 at 8:00 p.m. ($23 & $27)
  • Opening Night is Friday, July 11 at 8:00 p.m. ($38 – includes Opening Night Elegance)
  • Evening and Matinee Performances will run July 12 – July 27 at 8pm and 2pm. ($29 & $35)
  • Dinner & Show Night is July 10th and includes a 6:00 p.m. pre-show dinner at Paradiso, an upscale Italian restaurant in downtown Lake Worth, prior to the 8:00 p.m. performance. The all-inclusive dinner/show package price is $55 and includes a three-course meal and premium seats for the preview performance.

Lake Worth Playhouse is located at 713 Lake Ave in Downtown Lake Worth.  Valet Parking is available for $5. Street and lot parking is also available.  

Creative Parenting


By Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on June 1, 2014

“When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.”                                                     –  Attributed to Mark Twain

01_Samix shirts

Photo: LH Baumel.

This time of year, with Mother’s Day behind us and Father’s Day around the corner, I am reminded of the joys, trials and tribulations of parenthood.  There were so many times when the parenting books did not have the answers to the unique set of challenges each child presented. I learned, rather quickly, that raising my children required a degree of creativity that I had never practiced or prepared for.

The art of creative parenting has nothing to do with the visual or musical arts. Essentially, creative parenting is a set of skills that are largely improvised per your child’s needs. As my three children grew, I found myself in many situations where I had to stretch my imagination in order to come up with solutions.

For example, my daughter was (and still is) a wonderful performer. In addition to taking voice lessons in her early years, she studied dance. When she was about six years old she developed a fear of heights while rehearsing for her ballet recital on stage. I had one week to fix this problem!

I decided to “desensitize” her fear. I took her on a field trip to every stage available in the western communities. We started small and stopped by the little stage at her elementary school cafeteria. We both crawled on our hands and knees and felt each tile on the stage. We also repeatedly stepped down from it carefully. It made her feel secure knowing the actual depth and distance from stage to floor. Thereafter, every day, we did this exercise at several high school theaters and at the Royal Palm Beach Civic Center. Within a week, the problem was solved.

My youngest son had difficulty “thinking ahead” and making decisions. I thought deep and hard about how to exercise his mind in a forward thinking manner. Lo and behold, I taught him how to play chess. It is a game that requires the player to think of consequences that might occur several moves ahead. Not long after, he joined the chess team in elementary school and the competition encouraged him to think ahead more quickly. Believe it or not, it worked.

Recognizing potential in your children is an art as well. When my oldest son had his fifth grade “graduation party” at elementary school, I noticed that he insisted on taking charge of the music for the event. He brought at least thirty CD’s to the party, stood by the “boom box” and coordinated the flow of the music. His fellow students loved his song choices. Like many teens, over the next two years he became fascinated by what bands were making it to the top of the charts. Less than two years later, I suggested he “DJ” his sister’s summer pool party.  He brought our home stereo outside, drafted some friends to help him and organized games for the party participants to play. The festivity was so successful that a parent at the party offered to pay him to DJ her daughter’s party. From that moment on, a business was born (Samix Enterprises – see photo above)

My husband and I loaned him $1600 to buy some professional DJ equipment. One job led to another… he paid back the loan within four months. Throughout middle school and high school, he was one of the hottest DJ’s in Wellington. For the first few years, he didn’t have a driver’s license and we had to load up our car and drive him to “gigs!” Eventually, he bought himself a tux, refined his skills and emceed at Sweet Sixteens, Bar Mitzvahs, school dances, special events and weddings.

The most beautiful aspect of this story is that when my oldest son went off to college, his sister and brother took over Samix Enterprises. My daughter had no problem DJ-ing on a stage and my younger son was able to “think ahead” and plan the next music set on the spot.

I have many more examples of the creative parenting I attempted in my life. I urge you, when faced with a parenting dilemma to think outside the box. Take the time to go the extra mile and do something out of the ordinary. The results can be EXTRAORDINARY!

Live… Go… Do!


Top 5 List for June 2014


1) Calling all third graders! 


Have you ever wondered if your child is a potential Picasso or Oscar-bound actor? Prima ballerina or concert cellist? Award-winning author or roving reporter? On June 17th, the Center for Creative Education (CCE) will offer 60 rising third-grade students a unique opportunity to discover their passion for the arts.  CCE is launching the “Discover Series”, a signature program that will allow young children to explore music, dance, theater, visual arts and media.  The students do not have to have a specific talent or art experience. CCE is looking for kids with curiosity, a strong commitment to study the arts and the discipline to attend the weekly classes on a regular basis.

Students wishing to apply to the Discover Series must be Palm Beach County third-graders willing to commit to the program for the full three years.  Those enrolled will be a part of the program from third through fifth grade.  Tuition for the initial year’s 10-month program is $900 per student per year, but thanks to a $250,000 grant (from a generous donor who wishes to remain anonymous) almost all of the openings are underwritten with full or partial, need-based, scholarships.  Scholarship requests are available on the application. Registration and open houses are free and art supplies are provided.

Students will commit to one of two class times for the year – Tuesdays from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. or Thursdays from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.  No auditions or prior art experience is necessary and all materials will be provided.  If the organization receives more applications than there are available spots, a waiting list will be created.

Weekly classes begin on June 17, 2014 and run through March 12, 2015, with breaks for holidays.  Class sizes are limited and openings are available on a first-come, first-served, application basis.  Classes will take place at 425 24th Street, CCE’s namesake facility in the heart of West Palm Beach’s Northwood Village.

The Discover Series completes the circle of arts education that the Center for Creative Education provides: arts-integrated curriculum, arts-enhanced curriculum and art as curriculum.  They have long been linking arts and academics in their “LEAP” program, in which a CCE teaching artist and a classroom teacher collaborate to teach the content of art and another subject.  Their after-school program, “CADRE”, uses art as a “hook” to reinforce classroom studies.  Now CCE’s Discover Series will offer instruction in “art for art’s sake”, allowing third graders to explore a range of art forms and decide what sparks their creativity.

For information and registration forms for CCE’s Discover Series, visit the Center for Creative Education’s website at cceflorida.org or call at 561.805.9927.


2) Music for the Mind Presents…

Stuart School of Music

Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at 7pm


Harriet Himmel Theater in CityPlace

This is a year of celebration! The Stuart School of Music has been invited for the 13th year to present a concert for the Music for the Mind concert series. The concert will feature honor students of faculty members Susan Joyce—acclaimed Juilliard concert pianist and Doctorate from U. of Miami; William Borovina—graduate of Manhattan School of Music and noted baritone; Lynn Haynes—pianist and alumna of Univ. of Miami of Ohio; Tom Servinsky—Indiana Univ. of Pa., illustrious clarinetist and conductor of the Treasure Coast Youth Symphony; Luanne Dwyer—pianist and graduate of Wellesley College; Cynthia Hinkelman—graduate of Ohio Wesleyan Univ. and distinguished violinist; Laura Mozena—renowned violist and graduate of Northern Arizona Univ.; and Cynthia Kessler—graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic Univ., pianist and Martin County Arts Council mARTies Outstanding Performing Artist.

The Stuart School of Music has had the extraordinary honor of having five first-place winners in the prestigious Palm Beach Post Pathfinder Awards over the past ten years! These young students were recognized for their impressive and exceptional achievements in academic and musical accomplishments at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach. In addition, the school has been honored to have three remarkable students receive mARTies awards for “Outstanding Student Performing Artist” from the Arts Council of Martin County. Furthermore, dozens of Stuart School of Music students have been featured on the popular and celebrated WQCS-FM “Young Musicians Spotlight.”

The Music for the Mind Concert Series is held on the third Tuesday of every month at The Harriet Himmel Theater in CityPlace. Each concert presents a different musical group from local area schools and community organizations. The Stuart School of Music is the only group outside of Palm Beach County invited to participate in this concert series. All proceeds are used to benefit music education and for music scholarships.

Since its inception in 2002, the Music for the Mind concerts series has given over 9,000 young musicians the opportunity to perform and has raised over $350,000 to help keep music in our schools and community.

$10 for Adults / $5 for Children

For more info go to:


Click here to buy online


Tickets also available at the door
or by calling 772-221-8000



3) Page Turner Adventures: STEAM Trunk Circus


Presented by Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach at Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach

Saturday, June 21, 2014

2 – 3 PM


There’s magic, juggling, unicycling and huge physical comedy in this multi-media extravaganza! The STEAM Trunk Circus will get kids EXCITED about Science,
Technology, Engineering, Art and Math.  For all ages.


Phone: 561-868-7703

4) Plan Ahead… The musicals are coming!

“Kravis on Broadway” 2014 – 2015 has some terrific shows:

Cinderella, The Book of Mormon, Flashdance the Musical, Anything Goes, Memphis and Pippin

For more information and a preview video see:


My favorites are Cinderella (for the kids), The Book of Mormon (NOT for the kids) and Pippin. Subscriptions for all six Kravis On Broadway productions are $174 to $492 and will go on sale to the general public midsummer. For more information about purchasing a subscription to Kravis On Broadway, contact the Kravis Center box office at (561) 832-7469 or (800) 572-8471.  

5) … And now for a shameless plug:

The young boy who had to learn chess to “think ahead” has written a book. Former Around Wellington Teen Talk columnist, Evan Baumel, has just released Broken Mast: Changing Course for the Capitalist Ship in paperback on Amazon and as an ebook on Kindle, Nook and iBooks.  Broken Mast urges us to think ahead about the economic challenges our country faces and presents suggested solutions on how to solve them.


Not Your Mother’s Hudson River School


By Lori Hope Baumel

Originally appeared in Around Wellington Magazine on May 1, 2014

Welcoming The Queen Mary Cecil, c. 1937, Cecil Crosby Bell                                              Photo: Courtesy of The Norton Museum.

Welcoming The Queen Mary, c. 1937, Cecil Crosby Bell Photo: Courtesy of The Norton Museum.

“The Hudson River School was America’s first true artistic fraternity. Its name was coined to identify a group of New York City-based landscape painters that emerged about 1850 under the influence of the English émigré Thomas Cole (1801–1848) and flourished until about the time of the Centennial.”

– Metropolitan Museum of Art, Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History

As a child I was fortunate to have taken field trips to museums all over New York City. In addition, my father loved the Metropolitan Museum of Art and he would bring me there on occasion. He was particularly enamored with the painting entitled The Storm by Pierre Auguste Cot and would make a point of visiting his favorite masterpiece every time we visited.

In my youth, I did not know much about the paintings or sculpture I was looking at, but the vastness of the large gallery space intrigued me. I knew nothing about their investment value either and questioned why it was so important to devote entire buildings to these works of art?  As I grew, the answers came to me through continuous exposure. Also, I was very lucky to marry a man who, amongst his many talents, had an extensive knowledge of the visual arts.

In the art world, pieces are identified by their genre or era. Familiar terms like Renaissance, Impressionism, and Cubism are just a needle in the haystack of styles. Early on, one of the “styles” that I found difficult to comprehend was work done by the Hudson River School painters (circa 1820 – 1870’s). These pieces were often dark and dreary. The subject matter, mostly ships on the water, did not interest me at the time. Regardless, my father took my hand and I was impatiently dragged through the Hudson River School galleries.

When invited to attend a press conference for the Norton Museum’s new exhibit, Industrial Sublime: Modernism and the transformation of New York’s Rivers, 1900 – 1940, I thought I would give the Hudson River School “another shot” so to speak. Apparently, most of the work I had been exposed to was mid 19th century. I was curious to see the later work done by this fraternity of painters. I felt that if I learned about it I might gain an appreciation for it.

Needless to say, I was completely “blown away” by the knowledge I came home with. Apparently, the Hudson River School had a revival in the 20th Century and this gem of a retrospective displays the best of it. As a member of the press, I was privileged to be escorted through the exhibit by two of its expert curators, Bartholomew F. Bland and Ellen E. Roberts.

Initially, when entering Industrial Sublime, I set my eyes upon work that was colorful, industrial and moving. The historical path went from mountains to cranes. The hustle-bustle of a city and its rivers burgeoning upon the after-effects of the industrial revolution was a wake-up call to the importance of this art form.  Subjects that are often overdone, like the use of the Brooklyn Bridge, were depicted in ways I had never seen before. Painting methods and brush strokes were so varied that I did not know what to expect each time I turned a corner.

At the end of the press conference, I realized that I experienced a metamorphosis. What I once thought to be unexciting came alive for me. Industrial Sublime: Modernism and the transformation of New York’s Rivers symbolizes a love of the city, depicting its history, its billowing smoke whilst airbrushing out the grime of the industrial revolution. How lucky I was to have had this opportunity…  and to enjoy it along with the curators that assembled this refreshing retrospective.  Most importantly, it reminded me to remain open-minded about the many art forms I don’t know much about.

In the midst of Industrial Sublime, a poem by Hart Crane is printed on the museum wall. It reads:

02_Industrial Sublime Crane Poem

Hart Crane, excerpt from To Brooklyn Bridge, 1930. Photo: LH Baumel.


I urge our Around Wellington readership to experience Industrial Sublime: Modernism and the transformation of New York’s Rivers, 1900 – 1940 currently on display at the Norton Museum of Art.

Live… Go… Do!

Top 5 List for May 2014


1) Visit:

The Norton Museum Of Art

Industrial Sublime: Modernism and the Transformation of New York’s Rivers, 1900-1940

Featuring paintings by leading artists such as George Bellows, Robert Henri, John Marin, Reginald Marsh, Georgia O’Keeffe, and John Sloan, this exhibition examines the shift to urban views of New York’s waterways between 1900 and 1940 as Realists and Modernists conceived a new pictorial language to treat American industrialism. Having jettisoned the romantic ideals of forebears — such as the Hudson River School — who had ignored the industrialization of the region, these artists celebrated the changing way of life along the city’s waterfront. Instead of majestic mountains, they painted the modern waterways’ bridges, cranes, and ocean liners, using an increasingly sharp focus and borrowing ideals from the Machine Age. Twentieth-century artists took the elements of the Sublime, combined them with Modernism’s interest in structure and form, and applied them to humankind’s industry, thereby creating a new visual vocabulary for the modern era: the Industrial Sublime.

Organized by the Hudson River Museum. Local presentation of this exhibition is made possible in part through the generosity of Mrs. Anne Berkley Smith. With additional support provided by the Mr. and Mrs. Hamish Maxwell Exhibition Endowment and The Priscilla and John Richman Endowment for American Art. The exhibition and accompanying catalogue have been made possible by a generous grant from the Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Foundation for the Arts, Inc. The exhibition catalogue is supported, in part, by Furthermore: a program of the J. M. Kaplan Fund.                                – Norton Museum website and press release


Exhibit ends June 22, 2014

For more information see:


2) A Mother’s Day Treat:

Tales My Mother Told

May 11, 2014  at 4 PM

Presented by Ballet Palm Beach at the Eissey Theater – Palm Beach State College

03_Tales My Mother Told


Celebrate Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 11, 2014, with Ballet Palm Beach’s final performance of the season. Tales My Mother Told Me is a mixed repertoire program with dances inspired by stories from our childhood. The ballet will be at 4:00pm on Mother’s Day – a perfect way to spend the time with Mom! Tickets start at $15. Phone: 561-207-5900.

For more information see:


3) Hear:

Singspiration 2014

Sunday, May 18, 2014 – 7 to 9 PM

Presented by Young Singers of the Palm Beaches at The Kravis Center for the Performing Arts

Presented by 350 young singers from Palm Beach and Martin Counties: SingsSpiration will be an evening of music and entertainment that will inspire, uplift, surprise and leave you with a joyful heart.

Admission Info: $10-$40

For more information see: www.yspb.org

4) Enjoy:

SunFest 2014

Presented by SunFest of Palm Beach County at Downtown West Palm Beach

3 Stages • 50 Bands • Juried Art

SunFest is Florida’s largest waterfront music and art festival held annually in downtown West Palm Beach. This year’s lineup includes an incredible variety of national acts: Kid Rock, Ellie Goulding, Robin Thicke, The Goo Goo Dolls, Dick Dale, Daughtry, Doobie Brothers, Cake, Justin Moore, Blues Traveler, The Wailers and many more. The five-day festival also includes a fine art & craft show featuring the work of more than 140 national artists, and ends with a fireworks show that is not to be missed!

For ticket prices and the complete list of performers visit


Phone: 800-SUNFEST (786-3378)

Individual Dates & Times:
May 1, 2014: 5 pm – 10 pm (Thu)
May 2, 2014: 5 pm – 11 pm (Fri)
May 3, 2014: 12 pm – 11 pm (Sat)
May 4, 2014: 12 pm – 9 pm (Sun)

5) Expand your horizons:

The Walk to Fisterra with Dane Johansen, Cellist

Presented by Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach

Wednesday, May 7, 2014   6 PM Cocktails       7 – 8:30 PM Performance


The Brazilian Court Hotel
301 Australian Avenue, Palm Beach

Hear Dane perform as he prepares for “The Walk to Fisterra” in May, 2014 when he will walk nearly 600 miles through Spain on the Camino de Santiago, carrying his cello and performing Bach’s Six Suites for Solo Cello in ancient churches along the way.


04_Dane Johansen

Dane Johansen
J.S. Bach – Works for Solo Cello

Alaskan cellist, Dane Johansen appears frequently on the world’s leading stages including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York City, the Kennedy Center, BBC Proms in London, and Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw. He has performed with leading artists including James Levine, Pinchas Zukerman, and Mitsuko Uchida. His critically acclaimed performances have been described as “Ravishing… Brave and virtuosic” and “played with staggering aplomb” by the New York Times and New York Magazine. Dane is on faculty at the Juilliard School and has taught at many of the world’s leading conservatories including the Royal Academy in Lon-don. He enjoyed the unique opportunity to apprentice with Bernard Greenhouse, the most distinguished pupil of the great Catalan cellist, Pau Casals, throughout the last five years of Greenhouse’s life. Read more at www.danejohansen.com.

“Bach’s Suites for Solo Cello represent the beginning and end of my relationship with music. They were among the first pieces I played as a child and the rest of my life will be spent working toward their mastery. Generations of cellists have considered mastery of the Suites as a pinnacle of artistic achievement and a rite of passage. A life spent in pursuit of such a singular goal is like a pilgrimage; it is endless and requires extreme effort, daily commitment, and absolute resolve. I have decided to combine my musical pilgrimage with a physical one. In 2014 I will walk nearly 600 miles on the Camino de Santiago, a pilgrimage route beginning in France and crossing Spain to the Atlantic Ocean. I will carry my cello, performing and recording Bach’s Suites in ancient churches along the way. Walking with me, a team of brilliant filmmakers and a three-time Grammy Award winning music producer will create a visually stunning documentary exploring pilgrimage and music as timeless connections to the past, present, and future; featuring the Camino de Santiago and my first recording of Bach’s Suites for Solo Cello.”

– – Dane Johansen

Learn more about this exciting journey at www.walktofisterra.com.

Related links: