People & Places

  • Best Power Couple

    Drew and Dawn Meyers

    Broward County power couples sure have been taking big hits lately. At one time, it looked like Broward County Commissioner Stacy Ritter and her lobbyist husband, Russ Klenet, were going to take over the world. Now she's the subject of multiple criminal investigations, and he's scooted off to D.C., as he lost a lot of his local business. Broward County… More >>
  • Best Reality-Denying Campaign

    Beth Talabisco

    When recently criminally charged Tamarac Mayor Beth Talabisco was running for her seat in 2006, she tried hard to pretend she wasn't under the thumb of dirty developers Bruce and Shawn Chait, who were trying to get government approvals to build a much-too-dense housing development on two golf courses in her city. She went so far as to inform the… More >>
  • Best Local Girl Gone Bad

    Beverly Stracher

    People know Beverly Stracher's name these days as a key cooperating witness for the state in what is perhaps the biggest corruption cases in Broward County history. Or they know her as the husband of Les Stracher, who was a key partner of notorious Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein. But before the notoriety and political shenanigans, Beverly Stracher was just a… More >>
  • Best Political Coup

    Ouster of Palm Beach Schools Superintendent Art Johnson

    A vocal group of parents and teachers had been calling for Art Johnson's head for a year, blaming him for a new cookie-cutter curriculum many detested. Johnson canned his reviled chief academic officer, Jeffrey Hernandez, but he couldn't quell the uproar. Parents soon discovered that Hernandez had been moonlighting in Memphis while still on the payroll in Palm Beach County.… More >>
  • Ryan Alexander

    Best Young Guy

    Ryan Alexander

    This fair-haired son of a preacher man seems determined to save Fort Lauderdale from itself. Proving wrong the axiom that South Florida's native sons grow up to either chase money or leave, he taught himself to play guitar, and now he tours local bars and art venues with his one-man act, Alexander. When he's not making ladies' knees wobble with… More >>
  • Best Weathercaster

    Steve Weagle

    There will come a time when the social contracts that bind society will fall away. Blood will run, and chaos will rule. People will organize in small packs of roving marauders, pillaging what's left of humanity, perpetually searching for the next meal. The skies will be dark, the waters darker, and safety will be scarce. Then one person shall lead… More >>
  • Best FM Radio Personality

    Rich Davis, WLRN-FM (91.3)

    Try this: Next time you're driving home superlate on a Saturday night, just grazing the legal alcohol limit, tune the radio to 91.3 (yes, South Florida's NPR news station) and turn the volume up, way up. Suddenly you're part of a family of late-night wanderers united by a love of Caribbean music and a subtropical nighttime bliss that stretches over… More >>
  • Best Cure for Insomnia

    WLRN-FM's Topical Currents

    Welcome back to Topical Currents. I'm your host, Joseph Cooper. Today's guest is, well, it actually doesn't matter who today's guest is, because he has long ago fallen asleep. Apparently he has listened to our show before, because he brought his own pillow. He's spooning with it now on the floor of the studio. Anyway, I'll be taking your calls… More >>
  • Best Object of Political Hatred

    Joyce Kaufman

    For political climbers eager to win big on the national stage, the general rule is to hide the crazy — the KKK enthusiasts, the anarchists, the fringe lunatics. Allen West never got that memo. In November, before setting foot in his congressional office on Capitol Hill, he nominated Joyce Kaufman, who hosts an ultraconservative talk show on lowly WFTL-AM (850),… More >>
  • Mickey Clean

    Best Local Legend

    Mickey Clean

    In the gritty spring-break bars by the beach in Fort Lauderdale, they call him a "fixture," a "landmark," the man who comes around to put all the regulars in a cheery mood. In what seems like another life, he taught art at Harvard and fronted one of the country's first punk bands. But now he roams these bars. For a… More >>
  • Best Private Detective

    Bob Nygaard

    When Gypsy fortuneteller Gina Marks was swindling vulnerable and desperate people out of their life savings, nobody seemed to be able to stop her. She walked away from numerous criminal allegations, often after paying off the victims with some form of restitution. It happened over and over again — and to add insult to injury, HarperCollins, a major publishing house,… More >>
  • Best Place to Smoke a Little Doobie

    Down by the river

    More specifically, the Fort Lauderdale Riverwalk just west of the railroad bridge, where looming trees and a gazebo provide discreet and scenic respite. But don't take our word for it: On certain evenings, as lulls of conversation rise from groups of shadowy friends, the brackish air is ripe with the smell of smoke, both marine-grade and more organic. And if… More >>
  • Best Place to People-Watch

    Downtown Hollywood

    The celebrities here are of a... different sort. Hollywood is filled with the nation's down-and-out second-starters who settled here because they thought the name sounded nice. They mix with those of us who revel in that kind of diversity. The locals include rednecks, trannies, yuppies, hipsters, addicts, professors, urban pioneers, and everything in between. Find a chair outside on the… More >>
  • Best Place to Live

    Sailboat Bend, Fort Lauderdale

    Moving in South Florida can be a scary endeavor. Locals are ready with stories of "bad neighborhoods" that wildly contradict each other; luxury and crime coexist block by block. Well, nut up and shack up in one of the few truly historic neighborhoods Broward County has to offer. Rich, poor, black, and white coexist along the quiet, walkable streets lined… More >>
  • Best Place to Film a Zombie Movie

    Downtown Fort Lauderdale

    As it should, a zombie apocalypse would start out at a bar called Laser Wolf. Housed in a budding arts district called FAT — which stands for Flagler Arts & Technology — Village, there is irony here. As soon as Fort Lauderdale finally gets a regular, walkable art event, let's destroy it with zombies who run amok. Drab-dressed zombiefolk are… More >>
  • Best Place to Watch Glee

    Palm Beach Hibiscus

    Two blocks from the Clematis Street debauchery in downtown West Palm Beach is a Key West-style cottage with a white picket fence and a courtyard bar. There are tiki torches, palm trees, and a koi pond. Patrons graze on Brie-and-raspberry tarts and crab cakes while sipping melon martinis. Yes, there are plenty of gay men here but also straight women… More >>
  • Best Place to Witness a Fender Bender

    Boys Farmers Market

    Mention to someone in the know that you're planning to stop by the Boys for the first time and he'll likely let you in on two things: 1) The meat, cheese, bakery, and produce sections are out-of-control good; and 2) watch the hell out. The Tetris-like parking lot is overflowing with land yachts commandeered by people who are far too… More >>
  • Best Road to Avoid

    Glades Road East of I-95

    Boca Raton was recently named the 12th rudest city in the world, and there's a pretty good shot that every Boca resident will end up on Glades Road. It's a stretch of road where you're most likely to hear obscenities being hollered at the passing elderly. Don't be fooled by the Whole Foods, monstrous Barnes & Noble, and tree-lined campus… More >>
  • Best Nature Trail

    Cypress Hammock/Orchid Park

    Several years ago, the "last house" was built in Coral Springs. In other words, every lot big enough to hold a house had been used. Even this western suburb's parks are well-developed, highly engineered centers of human activity, from the carefully manicured baseball and soccer fields to the running trails with workout stops every tenth of a mile to the… More >>
  • Best Dog Park

    Exchange Club Park

    There are about a hundred miles of beautiful sandy beaches stretching from the northern border of Palm Beach County to the southernmost point of Broward County. But alas, no dogs are allowed. Sure, sure there's that stretch of beach in Fort Lauderdale that allows dogs three days a week, but that just doesn't scream "We love dogs!," does it? If… More >>
  • Best Walk in Urban Sprawl

    Plantation Heritage Park

    Heritage Park, all 88.5 acres, used to be owned by Fred Peters, the shoe scion who basically designed Fort Lauderdale's original western suburb, Plantation. Then it was an agricultural testing ground for the University of Florida. But in 1984, it became what it was always meant to be — a beautiful oasis in the middle of suburban Florida. It's there… More >>
  • Best Place to See an Alligator

    Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge

    Despite what seems like developers' best efforts, there are still a few great, open stretches of land in South Florida, and one of the true gems of southeast Palm Beach County is this expansive wildlife playground. In no other context but in referring to the Everglades could the word primordial become a cliché, but how else to sum up a… More >>
  • Best Pool

    W Fort Lauderdale

    Walk out the fifth-floor glass doors and into the pool area at the W Hotel on A1A, and euphoria is the only way to describe the sensation. The enormous pool expands in all directions, and if you squint, it's hard to decipher where the pool ends and the panoramic ocean view begins. The best part is that in the offseason,… More >>
  • Best Beach

    Palm Beach

    The public parking ends quickly on Palm Beach. In front of Charley's Crab, the parking trails off, and to the south, ocean access is blocked from the road by a formidable seawall. Start on the beach south from the parking area and a secluded beach stretches for five miles, all the way down to Lake Worth. Only the mansions across… More >>
  • Best Park in Palm Beach County

    John D. MacArthur Beach State Park

    Turn off your iPhone. Cross the long boardwalk to the beach, and enjoy a rare stretch of sand unblemished by condos or highway traffic. Slip a kayak into the gentle, cool water of the Lake Worth Lagoon. Paddle softly past the mangrove trees, keeping your eyes peeled for the spindly, regal body of a blue heron or an egret hiding… More >>
  • Best Park in Broward County

    Riverside Park

    A neighborhood park shouldn't be an all-inclusive, Disney-like affair, a city unto itself; it should be a stopping-off point, a quick breath of fresh air in the heart of a community. It should be good for a few hours of reading, some basketball, or as a place to tie your kid's shoe while the dog tries to knock him over.… More >>
  • Best Local Boy Gone Good

    Brandon Knight

    At Pine Crest, Brandon Knight was one of the most celebrated high school players ever, with two state titles and two Gatorade National Player of the Year awards. But when he chose to attend the winningest college basketball team in the country, nobody could be sure how he would handle the transition. Sure, he had a sweet and simple jump… More >>
  • Best Herald Writer

    Carl Hiaasen

    Now, perhaps Carl Hiaasen is the easy pick for the finest Miami Herald writer because he's a nationally known novelist who has worked as an investigative journalist and columnist for the paper since 1976. Or perhaps he's the only pick. Here's a guy who has a love-hate relationship with the sleaziest side of the Sunshine State. He isn't afraid to… More >>
  • Best Impromptu Group Dancing

    Florida Atlantic University's Baseball Team

    Is there anything in this world better than a large group of people spontaneously breaking into song and dance? No, there is nothing better. So on the rare occasion that it happens, you better hope there's a camera on. This time, it was during a rain delay last season in the middle of a game against Western Kentucky. Words can't… More >>
  • Best Sportswriter

    Dan Le Batard

    He's big-headed, stubborn, childish, and most certainly a mama's boy. On Pardon the Interruption, an ESPN show he occasionally guest-hosts, he's known as "the hatable Dan Le Batard," and he introduces himself with varying forms of the word bam. But Dan Le Batard can also write like rain, like the purest form of nourishment pouring from the sky. His ideas… More >>
  • Best Swingers Club

    Trapeze

    Half the club is a decadent and delicious buffet, a strobe-lit dance floor, lots of plush seating, and a sprawling bar. The other half is composed of several private rooms, beds, special contraptions, and a sexy, outrageous fuck-fest that is second to none in the state.… More >>
  • Best Debauched Dance Night

    The Green Room

    Recipe for debauchery: 1. Mix equal parts class, decadence, and people dressed too well to stay downstairs at America's Backyard. 2. Sprinkle in some immaculate white VIP couches, glittering chandeliers, and anything-goes stripper poles. 3. Add a pinch of smut. 4. Blend in liberal amounts of champagne, Lady Gaga tunes, and drunken party girls in mile-high heels. 5. Now throw it all on a… More >>
  • Best Tea Room

    TeaLicious Tea Room

    The Chinese discovered it. The Japanese made it ceremonial. The Indians made it a latte. And the Brits, well, they took it over and made it seem like their idea. Typical. But it's merry old England we have to thank for afternoon tea as we know it. Probably the most perfect place in the world for a traditional cream tea… More >>
  • Best Wine Shop

    Wine Watch

    A vast selection of varietals, wallet-friendly prices, an informed staff, and delicious catered eats — wine snobs don't expect anything less from a shop. At Wine Watch, proprietor Andrew Lampasone believes "you should have between three and five glasses of wine a day." In that case, we better get sipping. Good thing his shop features more than 3,000 wines, with tastings… More >>
  • Best Quixotic Business Move

    Books & Books in the Museum of Art|Fort Lauderdale

    If, by some minor miracle of the market, the new outpost of Miami's noblest booksellers manages to flourish in its home at the Museum of Art|Fort Lauderdale, we'll all be better for it. Books & Books does bookstores right — all the coolest authors come and speak (Greil Marcus! Bernard-Henri Lévy!), all the coolest books are kept in stock (books… More >>
  • Best Hair Salon

    Donna Pascoe Salon

    Like the miles and miles of our sun-drenched beaches, there are miles and miles of (seemingly) sun-drenched (flatironed) blond hair. But if you're not afraid of big, bold curls, then head to Donna Pascoe Salon. Curly girls — and lads — this is your new hair home. Aside from all the usual posh salon services and the fact that they've… More >>
  • Best Building

    Design Center of the Americas

    Judge a building by its cover, sure. If you're in Dania Beach, taking a gander at the Design Center of the Americas is a must: It occupies 775,000 square feet. It turns colors at night, with shades of pink and yellow and green that light up the east side of I-95. This squarish white building is not a bank or… More >>
  • Delray Beach Public Library

    Best Library

    Delray Beach Public Library

    A well-funded city library, the Delray Beach Public Library has all the usual modern media amenities in spades. There are quiet study rooms, large meeting rooms, and youth activities. There's ample free parking, a café, and row after row of shelves containing more than 250,000 books. There's free Wi-Fi throughout the building, with no pesky registration and login system, so… More >>
  • Palm Beach County Courthouse

    Best Courthouse

    Palm Beach County Courthouse

    One trip to the asbestos-laden, flooding, disorganized, corrupt, stinking, harrowing, overcrowded, labyrinthine, and depressing Broward Main Courthouse (if you can even manage to find a $10 parking spot) can sour one's very concept of justice. After this experience, a trip to West Palm's Shangri-la of law makes even the most hardened Browardian feel like he's arrived at God's golden door.… More >>
  • Best Nonprofit

    Drag It Out

    We're proud to give graduation announcements when it's for a plethora of brand-spanking-new drag queens. The nonprofit Drag It Out mentors, inspires, fundraises, and teaches the art of drag. After ten weeks of free workshops, coached by professional drag queens, these draglings learn how to walk in six-inch heels. They create personas. They get real tools on how to enter… More >>
  • Whole Foods Market

    Best Place for Cougars to Hunt

    Whole Foods Market

    A cougar needs to hunt for young males, and the cubs are in need of some cash. (It's OK, cougars: Everyone agrees there's nothing wrong with being a sugar mama.) So, really, the natural location to find a cougar is Whole Foods. What young gent can easily afford a $15 bottle of jelly on his own? But to linger by… More >>
  • Mizner Park

    Best Place to Gold-Dig

    Mizner Park

    If you want to add dating and/or marrying above your income bracket to your résumé, Mizner Park is the glittery office park where you should be knocking on doors for an interview. The ostentatious nature of many of the downtown Boca visitors means it can be hard to determine who's truly loaded and who's just really good at playing —… More >>
  • 2ofUs show at the Field Irish Pub & Eatery

    Best Place for a First Date

    2ofUs show at the Field Irish Pub & Eatery

    Congratulations! You snagged a date. You probably know nothing about this person. Does she like the Beatles? We won't go as far as to say that you can never trust a person who doesn't like the Beatles, but we will say you can trust a person — at least for one night — who does like the Beatles. Especially if… More >>
  • Best One-Nighter

    "A Clockwork Orgy" at Club X-It - CLOSED

    Themed, adult parties put together by Electrolust take place once a month at Club X-it, but it was on Saturday, February 5, at "A Clockwork Orgy," that a gang of friends who had never attended a fetish party before all got whipped together (not at the same time) — and that made for one helluva night. At this annual Stanley… More >>
  • Reef Road Rum Bar

    Best Reggae Scene

    Reef Road Rum Bar - CLOSED

    The Reef Road Rum Bar, located smack in the middle of downtown West Palm Beach, is like the Cheers of the reggae scene. Out-of-town reggae bands take the stage most nights. Local band Spred the Dub and DJ Highgrad host a weekly Monday-night reggae with no cover and Red Stripe on special. The huge windows behind the stage stay open… More >>
  • Best Place to Gamble

    Seminole Casino Coconut Creek

    There's poker and slots, just like at every other casino in our current golden age of gambling in South Florida. But the Seminole Casino in Coconut Creek also has the so-called "Vegas-style" games available only to the Seminoles — thanks to a table full of cash and a special pact with Charlie Crist. That means blackjack and Pai Gow and… More >>
  • Best Drag Show

    Lips

    Only at Lips will a six-foot-tall Marilyn Monroe bring you a dirty joke along with your RuPaul Rum Punch. The stage flashes, and the music blasts; the performers ("dolls with balls") are dressed to the nines and prettified with hours' worth of makeup application. They're rude, crude, and utterly hilarious; they lip-synch and dance in tower-tall stilettos and make sure… More >>
  • Peter Pan Diner

    Best Place for the Sleepless

    Peter Pan Diner

    At 4 a.m., the world's a hard place for a hot mess. You're drunk; bouncers removed you from the bar over an hour ago, and all you've done since is send hysterical text messages to your ex. In the miasma of your alcohol-fueled mind, there's a fine line between "sleeping" and "passing out," and you're inclined to neither. Fortunately, a… More >>
  • Little Munich

    Best Free Movies

    Little Munich

    After a long day at work, sometimes the only things you have enough energy to do are crack open a cold beer and watch a movie. But considering they don't serve beer at most movie theaters, head down to Little Munich. Not only does it boast authentic German cuisine, a huge selection of draft "bier," and a friendly atmosphere but… More >>
  • Best Bar for Northerners to Feel at Home

    The Lodge - CLOSED

    Unless you've got a few Midwestern winters under your belt — with those five months of frigid, all-consuming solitude that push you just to your breaking point and then a hair more — you're probably missing out on at least a fraction of the appeal of the Lodge. Sure, it's an affable place no matter your geographic heritage, but for… More >>
  • Dirty Blondes

    Best Place to Game

    Dirty Blondes

    So what if the air-hockey table is so sticky that it works better if you dump a beer on it? If you're at Dirty Blondes beach bar, you're probably not sober enough to care. And that's fine, because the games double as side tables to lean against and rest your cheap drink on. But if you are inclined to game,… More >>
  • Greenbrier Restaurant

    Best Bar for Smokers

    Greenbrier Restaurant

    Thanks to researchers across the globe finally making good use of government-issued grants, we now have sound arguments for ogling boobs and smoking cigarettes. Yep, some scientists have claimed that gazing upon breasts can extend a man's life, and others have said that breaking up the 9-to-5 drudgery actually makes smokers less stressed than nonsmokers. Stogie-grasping patrons who want to… More >>
  • Best Hole in the Wall

    Bimini Bay Bar

    Bimini Bay is a drinking den for wayfarers who likely missed their flight at FLL — back in 1968. Both blue and white collars find leisure at this neighborhood bar, which isn't properly portrayed by simple descriptions like "dive" or "hole in the wall." No establishment from Belle Glade to Miramar holds a lit cigarette to Bimini — a place… More >>
  • Bimini Boatyard Bar & Grill

    Best Yacht Crowd Bar

    Bimini Boatyard Bar & Grill

    Palm-frond-shaped fan blades stir a slight breeze over the hordes of Red Stripe-drinking, khaki-wearing yachties who make up the usual crowd of this nautical-themed bar. If you get sloshed enough and squint, it even feels like you're aboard a huge, decadent vessel, without the potential seasickness. And if you can't get an actual boat owner to take you back to… More >>
  • Best Radio Personality

    John Spano

    Votes: 115 Runners-up: OMG Mike, 81; Dan LeBatard, 8… More >>

Best of Award Graphics

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