THU 1/20The Broward County Fair opens its gates today at the Pompano Race Track (corner of Atlantic Boulevard and Powerline Road, Pompano Beach). You can expect the typical county fair fare, so to speak, from this year's event, along with a few surprises. Like past years and, in fact, like most county fairs across the country, you'll find the usual rides and games, snacks and drinks, and booths dedicated to local businesses. Traditionally heavy on agribusiness, the Broward County Fair is no different. But, this being South Florida, there are a few marked variances from the stereotypical county fair. Daily attractions include a shark tank, with several feedings every day. To make matters more nail-biting, the sharks are fed by hand by a very brave diver. The aquatic theme continues with high divers and trout fishing. Although the fair is open through November 30, good days to go include Friday's "Teen Night" and Wednesday's "Noche Latina." Admission is $5 in advance, $8 at the door, with multipass tickets available. Call 954-922-2224.
FRI 11/21After one of Saturday Night Live's shortest careers, Dean Edwards is back to his day job, coming to the New York Comedy Club (8221 Glades Rd., Boca Raton) today and Saturday to continue his standup career. With Tim Meadows out and SNL apparently required to keep up a two-black-man quota after years of token-black-man status, the show brought on Edwards, who then promptly left along with Tracy Morgan. Morgan got his own show, SNL tacked on two more black men (Kenan Thompson and Finesse Mitchell), and Edwards found himself right back where he started. But, hey, he's still funny. Catch the comedian at 9 p.m. tonight or 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. tomorrow. Tickets cost $12, plus a two-drink minimum. Call 561-470-6887.
SAT 11/22When you think of energy bars, you think of film festivals, right? Luna, the company that makes those delicious, all natural, nondairy bars full of the vitamins and minerals that every woman needs, presents LunaFest, its annual film festival. The fest features six short films for women by women, including Barrier Device, a film about a researcher for a female condom; Kissed by Angels, a documentary about one woman overcoming breast cancer; Judy's Time, a daughter's tribute to her triathlete mother, who was killed in a car accident; Colorforms, an eight-minute story of a little girl finding inspiration in an artistic mess; Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, a social satire on reproductive rights and birth control; and Remembrance, a journey into the noir-tinged relationship of a man and woman during WWII. Check it out at Cinema Paradiso (503 SE Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale). Cocktail reception starts at 6:30 p.m., followed by the screenings at 7:30 p.m. Cost is $10, and proceeds benefit the Breast Cancer Fund. Call 954-760-9898.
SUN 11/23Did you know that Delray Beach has its own orchestra? It's true, and it performs at Old School Square (51 N. Swinton Ave., Delray Beach). Led by the charismatic Robin Netscher, the 39-piece Delray Beach Philharmonic Pops Orchestralays down a mix of classics and contemporary works. Yes, it'll probably play the theme from Titanic, but it might also kick out an orchestral funk version of "Jungle Boogie" or perhaps a wacky free-form version of "Enter Sandman." And you don't want to miss that. Performance starts at 2 p.m. and tickets cost $33 or $35. Call 561-243-7922.
MON 11/24Santa Claus is coming to town, and he's looking for a few good men. Well, maybe men isn't the right word. Little humanoids with pointy ears would be better. If you think you've got what it takes to be one of the few, the proud -- the elves -- then attend Elf School at 6:30 p.m. at the Boca Raton Community Center (150 Crawford St., Boca Raton). At the community center, humans take on the intense training that slowly warps them into elves. They study songs and get acting lessons. They learn to understand the fashionable qualities inherent in wearing red and green with white trim. Once they've been properly brainwashed, er, filled with Christmas cheer, they'll be unleashed on the sleepy unsuspecting town of Boca Raton as part of the "Santa: Cause I Love You Campaign," wherein they will collect and give away thousands of presents. At the very least, it's a chance for you to do some good and avoid that lump of coal in your stocking. After all, Santa wouldn't deny an elf -- would he? Call 561-361-9091.
TUE 11/25The kimono's not just for traditionalists anymore. Not if Anne Namba has anything to do with it. The Hawaiian-born Namba, whose clothing has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and worn by the likes of Hillary Clinton, brings her unique designs to the Morikami Museum (4000 Morikami Park Rd., Delray Beach) to unveil her fall/holiday collection. You may be thinking, "Hey, who wears friggin' kimonos in Florida?" But Namba's designs transcend the traditional look that everyone knows from movies and books for a more urban feel. Check out her collection of evening gowns, wedding dresses, and funky kimonos at 10 a.m. Admission is $9 and is free for members. Call 561-495-0233.
WED 11/26If any part of your brain is beginning to drift off into the fringes of holiday depression, get thee to the Pride Factory (845 N. Federal Hwy., Fort Lauderdale) for Speak Up/Speak Out... Slam It! This weekly spoken-word event is a night of "verbal elation and stimulation" hosted by Bishop Mahee of the Great Congregation of Fort Lauderdale, and it's open to anyone. Now, if the thought of "spoken word" fills you with dread and brings to mind images of pasty dudes reading tear-streaked poetry out of their journals, don't worry. Speak Up/Speak Out focuses on the upbeat, the unique, and the bizarre. If you're a writer, musician, poet, or vocal stylist or just have something to say, damn it, the floor is yours. The verbal jubilation starts at 7:30 p.m. and is free. Call 954-463-6600.