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the flog

Oh, Say, Do You See?

Whether you’re new to the First Coast, you’ve been here for ages, or you’re planning your next move, Blue Star Museums are an engaging—and affordable—way to squeeze in some summer fun. This is the 10th summer Blue Star Museums open their doors to active-duty military members and their families across the nation–free of charge. An initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts, in collaboration with Blue Star Families and the Department of Defense, Blue Star Museums offer complimentary admission to select museums as well as gardens, aquariums and zoos in all 50 states as well as Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. With more than 2,000 participating institutions this year, all kinds of adventures await.

“We’ve seen the tremendous impact the Blue Star Museums program brings to our military families, and we’re thrilled to be celebrating a decade of support,” said Kathy Roth-Douquet, chief executive officer of Blue Star Families, in a recent press release. “Not only are museums fun to explore, but [they’re] great for making memories and strengthening military families as a whole.”

Among Northeast Florida’s Blue Star Museums are the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens, Mandarin Museum & Historical Society, MOCA Jacksonville, Beaches Museum, Lightner Museum and the St. Augustine Lighthouse & Maritime Museum.

Pack up the kids and head to Riverside’s Cummer Museum to beat the heat and see great art and breathtaking garden landscaping, too. Art Connections offers four interactive exhibits, including a gallery for children younger than five and an area to create self-portraits.

“Our city is home to approximately 75,000 active duty, reserve and civilian members of our Armed Forces, and their service is a critical part of our region’s identity. Through our participation in the Blue Star Museum Program, we have welcomed thousands of these families over the …   More

the flog

Man on the Inside

I first saw Bernard Fowler on stage when A Bowie Celebration: The David Bowie Alumni Tour passed through the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall earlier this year. Though the rock-and-soul vocalist was but one of several singers on the bill, he opened the set alongside Bowie’s longtime pianist, Mike Garson. The two New Yorkers paid homage to the Thin White Duke with a stripped-down version of one of Bowie’s deepest album cuts, “Bring Me the Disco King.” Another guest singer, Living Colour’s Corey Glover, would hit some impressive high notes later in the set but, for my money, Fowler’s early display of gravitas was the evening’s high-water mark.

Months later, I caught up with Fowler in a telephone conversation. Turns out, he met Bowie a few times. They were introduced by their mutual friend Mick. Incidentally, Bernard Fowler is on the road again and currently touring as a backing vocalist for said Mick and his rock band, The Rolling Stones. You might have heard of them. The British guitar group rose to fame in the mid-1960s as working-class London’s answer to Liverpool’s Fab Four, The Beatles.

Fowler came into the picture two decades later, when Jagger was in New York cutting a solo album. Producer Bill Laswell brought Fowler in to provide vocal harmonies. They hit it off. Fowler has been recording with Jagger and touring with The Stones ever since. The band’s No Filter Tour rolls into Northeast Florida this week. The Glimmer Twins and pals were originally scheduled for April, but the tour was postponed when Jagger underwent heart surgery.

By the time I spoke with Fowler, in early July, the tour was a couple of weeks into its rescheduled run and all was going well. “The boys are in great shape,” he said. “They’re playing beautifully. Mick is kicking ass and taking no prisoners. He’s not showing one bit of surgery strain. If anything, he’s gotten stronger.”

The …   More

the flog

Baos of Summer

Behold, doughy bao buns brimming with creamy blue crab, their fried toppings tumbling onto the plate below! It’s the second week of Crane Ramen’s “Sun’s Out, Buns Out” promotion. Every Wednesday and Thursday for eight weeks, the Five Points branch of the Gainesville-based eatery rolls out a new, limited-edition dish inspired by one of Jacksonville's professional sports teams.

Week 1 (June 26 & 27): Armada—fried sardine with beurre blanc espuma

Week 2 (July 10 & 11): New Jax City—lemon confit and blue crab with fried crunchy crab toppings

Week 3 (July 17 & 18): Sharks—gumbo bun

Week 4 (July 24 & 25): Jumbo Shrimp—Mayport shrimp burger with tomato marmalade

Week 5 (July 31 & Aug. 1): Axemen—Jacksonville “hot chicken” with sweet coleslaw

Week 6 (Aug. 7 & 8): Icemen—roast beef with caramelized onions and parmesan cheese

Week 7 (Aug. 14 & 15): Jaguars—fried pork belly with oxtail gravy

Week 8 (August 21 & 22): Giants—duck confit with avocado

The idea came to Chef Steve Grimes after he ran into several Jacksonville Jaguars players at a local Caribbean restaurant. “They were eating some oxtail, and I had talked to them about coming to the restaurant, and then I had thought about serving in the stadium, and then I wanted to tie together the rest of the city and see if I could just get some more people to come into the restaurant,” Grimes said. “And so I started looking at other sports teams, and then I just wanted to collaborate with all of them, really.”

Foodies interested in any of these dishes should make the time, as this will be the only opportunity they have to try to them. They cannot simply stop by on Friday and expect that the kitchen will make it again (although Grimes would consider bringing a favorite back in the future; and, of course, the promotion will likely run again next summer). …   More

the flog

So Long, Rockville

Jacksonville’s cronies-only urban redevelopment racket claims another victim as Welcome to Rockville moves to Daytona Beach. According to a weekend press release written on behalf of Los Angeles-based production company Danny Wimmer Presents, the major music festival—which has been hosted in Jacksonville’s Northbank district for nine years—will celebrate its 10th anniversary edition at Daytona International Speedway in May 2020. The company cited city policy as a determining factor.

“As a result of Jacksonville’s continued development of the city’s downtown area,” the email press release stated, “Metropolitan Park is no longer available to host the annual festival.”

Although Jacksonville music-lovers are already mourning the loss on social media, DWP appears to be making lemonade. “After welcoming sold-out crowds of 90,000-plus the past three years,” the press release continued, "the move to Daytona International Speedway will allow Rockville to increase its audience capacity while at the same time providing more enhanced audience experiences.”

Indeed, the copywriter went on to tout the festival’s new home as “a world-class facility, including numerous hotels within walking distance, many dining options and expanded space for camping, allowing Rockville attendees a convenient and well-rounded experience.”

The email also quoted company founder (and Jacksonville native) Danny Wimmer, who addressed the Northeast Florida ticket-buyers who built Rockville: “This is where it all began—not just for Rockville, but for me. I love my hometown, and I’m really proud of what Rockville accomplished in its nine years in Jacksonville. Unfortunately, there was no longer a space at Metropolitan Park for us to deliver the kind of festival experience that Florida’s rock fans deserve. I’m excited to have a larger site to work with that allows us the …   More

the flog

Fishing for Shark Selfies

In February, the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission unanimously voted to add several long-awaited shark fishing regulations to begin on July 1. Folio Weekly sat down with OneProtest’s Adam Sugalski to discuss these new rules.

It can be exciting to tame a creature stronger than oneself, but this superiority complex is killing prohibited sharks and endangering harvestable ones. In the struggle to pull a shark aboard and have a photo session, that shark’s body is creating lactic acid. If the shark survives long enough to swim away, it can experience extreme stress and even death in the wild.

“I’ve seen so many videos of, ‘We caught a big hammerhead.’ All these pictures, [anglers] sit on it. They let it go, and their hammerhead just flops over and dies on the shore. And with prohibited species especially, hammerheads among other ones, you basically have to leave them in the water.” Sugalski said. “And [the FWC is] recommending you cut the leader as close as you can, so you have to have bolt cutters.”

According to Sugalski, the founder and executive director of OneProtest, the nonprofit serves as the “glue that holds the book together.” Shark advocates had been urging FWC commissioners to create and enforce new regulations for more than a year before they voted on the issue in February. Activists eventually contacted OneProtest, which used its marketing and outreach skills to gain support throughout the state.

Since 2015, Sugalski and his team have fought for the humanitarian treatment of animals in circuses, zoos and puppy mills, among other businesses. OneProtest’s coverage of and anger regarding the reinstatement of recreational bear hunting in Florida in 2015 gained international attention. The FWC has banned the sport every year …   More

the flog

Carriages Are Cruelty

Jacksonville-based advocacy organization One Protest and the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida join forces tomorrow to demonstrate against St. Augustine’s carriage-tour industry. The city is home to several carriage companies that offer narrated historical tours to visitors in horse-drawn carriages. The stretch of Avenida Menendez between the Castillo de San Marcos and the Bridge of Lions, known as the Bayfront, is their designated staging area, and will be the site of the protest.

Event organizers, who expect around 50 protesters, say the industry is archaic and inhumane, especially in the summertime, when heat and vehicle exhaust combine to create hazardous conditions. There are currently regulations in place, largely thanks to previous protests. A landmark 2012 ordinance, lobbied by the ARFF, limited hours and mandated basic hydration and treatment standards. It also enforced fines for violations.

Now, following victories in several other Florida cities, protesters are aiming for a complete ban on horse-drawn carriages in St. Augustine.   More

the flog

A Decade of Inclusiveness

The Jacksonville International Airport’s Concourse C is often filled with travelers hustling to and from their scheduled flights. Amidst the foot traffic stand a pair of bathrooms, but the unique artwork they display is often overlooked.



What passersby don’t realize is these bathrooms showcase an inclusive set of pictographs: each tile represents the many shapes and forms of the restrooms’ users. But these tiles haven’t always been there.



JIA decided to commission this inclusive art project in 2008. It awarded the opportunity to Atlanta artist Gregor Turk, who specializes in sculpture, public art installations, photography and works on paper. His proposed design for the space included a series of 1-foot tiles featuring 68 unique pictograms.



“The public was introduced to the now ubiquitous pictograms of men and women in 1974 as a means of efficient standardized restroom signage. For years I have made wax-oil rubbings or taken photographs of these pictograms,” Turk said. “Even the most standard pictograms vary in their width, cut of the arms, broadness of the shoulders, and distance or connectivity of the head to the body.”



Turk began to document the wide range of gendered figures during his travels, and concluded that, at facilities that employ a greater sense of design, highly stylized pictograms tend to reflect a much greater range of body types, shapes, proportions and activities


“When the images of the respective figures are shown collectively, their typological differences become apparent, even amusing,” Turk said. “The pictograms I used as a source for [the JIA] installation came from Brazil, Canada, the Czech Republic, France, Israel, Lebanon, Mexico, South Africa, Spain, Syria and the United States.”


So when the airport submitted a call request for proposals, Turk …   More

the flog

Follow Through

Jacksonville City Councilmember Garrett Dennis is set to formally introduce his legislation concerning possession of marijuana and marijuana paraphernalia at City Council's May 15 meeting.

Dennis wants Jacksonville to follow other Florida cities and counties in offering the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office an alternative to the standard misdemeanor charge for possession of marijuana. If passed, the bill would allow officers to issue offenders a civil infraction for having less than 20 grams.

The bill was filed on May 8 and immediately caused a stir in local media. Popular opinion seems to support the move, but most citizens anticipate that City Council will ultimately vote down the bill.

The Neighborhood, Community Services, Public Health & Safety Committee is scheduled to review the bill on May 20, followed by the Rules Committee on May 21.

Community members will have the opportunity to speak on the legislation when City Council holds a public hearing on May 28.

According to the City Council’s office, it is rare for members to vote on controversial bills after only one public reading. More likely, the proposed bill will return to the standing committees to be seconded, and City Council will discuss it during several meetings before voting.

Dennis’ complete legislation can be found at here.   More

the flog

Collectively Crucial

After almost a decade in business, Richmond folk duo Lobo Marino has recorded a bunch of music, and that music has taken them around the world a couple times over. Wherever they are, however, it's always about home. Laney Sullivan and Jameson Price harmonize and play a plethora of instruments including banjo, bass drum, table, guitar and Sullivan's handy harmonium, which along with Price's drum comprises the most consistent element of the Lobo Marino sound.

The duo's home state, Virginia, has sent a bunch of cool bands to perform in venues around Northeast Florida, going back to the days of Burro Bar and the original Underbelly. Of all those groups, Lobo Marino has probably played here the most, and they're not done yet. This week they're playing not one, not two, not three, but four shows in the region—all part of a ten day mini-tour that spans seven cities and nine gigs, all of which are free or by donation.

On May 1, they play St. Augustine's Sarbez with The Willowwacks, one of the region's most touted young tandems, and The Dewars, harmonizing twin-brother transplants from Brooklyn or South Florida (same diff). On May 2, they head to Murray Hill to play a set at Casita Yoga Studio. May 3, it's the Edge Rock Gym on Phillips Highway. Finally, on May 5, after a rare and well-deserved Saturday off, Lobo Marino plays the Seventh Wonder Holistic Spa in Avondale. They're set to hit Gainesville the following day, on their way out of Florida and into Georgio, South Carolina and Virginia.

Lobo Marino are nearly as prolific on tape as they are on tour. They've released about six albums, a couple of EPs and a slew of singles since forming in 2009. Among the highlights is Fields, an album of field recordings from the band's recent travels, and 2017's The Mulberry House. You could call their sound a fusion of sorts between indie-folk and Gamelan—the strain of droning, thumping world music that you might hear on PBS during aerial shots of mountain ranges …   More

the flog

Your Goose Is Cookin'

Currently the sixth editor of Void Magazine, Matthew B. Shaw was once the sixth editor of Folio Weekly. He cooked our book for about a year, from March 2015 to March 2016. "I came in as a fairly green editor, even writer," he told me, "having done less than a half dozen investigative pieces and profiles for Jeff Billman [who preceded him as editor], and a random assortment of published pieces. I really credit Jeff and [Folio Weekly publisher] Sam Taylor for trusting me and instilling confidence. I was just 27 when I took the reins there and I grew up revering the writing and photography in Folio, so it was a big deal for me, personally. It was a heavy responsibility."

This month marks one year in his current position. "It's been really nice to get back in the editor's chair and write specifically about the region I live in and love, again," he said. "They've been super supportive, encouraging me to pursue various projects for the mag and continue to work for other publications like Surfer Mag and Surfer's Journal."

Shaw is also a husband and a father, and a player of the bass guitar in Jacksonville Beach-based garage/surf-rock band, The Mother Gooses, which includes guitarist Ed Gil and drummer Matt Mattox. "Most of our praises comes from people between the ages of 3-6 and 55-70," says Gil. He describes the group's sound as "kind of a throwback to mid-'60s American rock 'n' roll, with hints of surf and garage sounds that are intended to induce hip-swinging and provide easy listening opportunities."

Formed in 2016, the trio draws inspiration from groups like The Cramps and Thee Oh Sees. They hit the ground running with two four-track EPs, "I Want You" (August 2016) and "My Baby Left Me By the Sea" (November 2016). Both were produced by Dan Brown, himself a former Folio Weekly arts editor. A debut LP will be out soon. Appetites have been duly whetted by the single "Can't Get Away" b/w "The River," produced by Glenn Van Dyke at Winterland Studio and issued …   More