If there's one thing every home needs to spruce up the décor, it's somebody naked. A print of My Naked Wife Watching Her Body by Salvador Dalí may be a good bet, if you like your nudes tastefully done and devoid of full-frontal nudity. But then, maybe your taste runs to the raw, for which there are, say, Mapplethorpe reproductions. Or classic: the ever-popular Botticelli's Venus. But why not toss the whole print idea out the window? The opportunity to own an original work of art presents itself as the Armory Art Center (1703 S. Lake Ave., West Palm Beach) brings you "Take Home a Nude." The auction features work by artists from around the nation, though a great number of the pieces up for grabs were done by teachers of the center's master artist workshop program as well as by other faculty members. Pictures of people in their birthday suits aren't the only works to be auctioned off. "Take Home a Nude," which is subtitled "...or a Sculpture, Ceramic, Landscape, Still Life, Photograph, or Other Great Work of Art," features a variety of subjects and media, with prices ranging from $100 to $10,000. The bidding starts at 7 p.m. Call 561-832-1776.
Friday, March 7
South Florida becomes the center of the hip-gyrating world as Maja, the Girl from the Nile, presents her annual Spirit of the Tribes belly-dance festival at the Bergeron Rodeo Grounds (4271 Davie Rd., Davie). Billed as the nation's largest tribal fusion belly-dance festival, the event covers three days of classes for all experience levels, held at various times throughout the weekend. If you'd rather sit back and let other people do all the hip shaking, tonight's gala show would be your best bet. Once doors open at 6 p.m., witness more than 50 dancers and dance troupes from around the country strut their belly-wiggling abilities. And once these dancers have convinced you to abandon your life and take up the role of a belly-dancing harem girl, you'll find everything you need right on site. More than 20 vendors hawk costumes, jewelry, accessories, instruments, and Middle Eastern music as well as food and drinks, massages, henna tattoos, and Egyptian taro. The show costs $15, and class costs vary. Call 954-929-7155.
Saturday, March 8
Pop artist Peter Max arrives at Wentworth Gallery (517 Town Center Mall, Glades Road and Andrews Avenue, Boca Raton) from 6 to 9 p.m. to promote his "Pop to Patriotism" exhibit. Although known for his psychedelic "cosmic" style of the 1960s, much of Max's recent work has focused on Americana, while keeping the brash color and dreamy designs he is known for. Since 1982, Max has made it a tradition to do a painting of the Statue of Liberty each Fourth of July, for example. The exhibit in question features more than 100 original works and limited-edition prints dedicated to Max's fascination with all things American. Call 561-338-0804.
Sunday, March 9
Somewhere in the deep recesses of the collective unconscious, a little red-bearded man with a long-stemmed pipe and garish green clothes is crying into his green beer. Saint Patrick's Day falls on a Monday this year. What about drunken revelry? How can we properly celebrate the patron saint of alcohol poisoning... er... Ireland? It breaks the heart. But fear not! The City of Hollywood kicks off the festivities more than a week early with its Saint Patrick's Day Parade and Festival. After a parade at 1 p.m., the party kicks into full swing at Young Circle Park (Federal Highway and Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood). Emcee Ian Miller provides between-act entertainment and introduces the three bands scheduled to perform. Celt, Celtic Connection, and Fire in the Kitchen are all local Irish acts, normally making their bread and butter by appearing at the inexplicably vast number of Irish bars and restaurants throughout South Florida. Along with all the pipes and fiddles, visitors may enjoy shepherd's pie, corned beef and cabbage, and other traditional foods of the Auld Sod. Admission is free. Call 954-921-3404.
Monday, March 10
Obsessive gardening is a way of life for many South Floridians. The number of gardening clubs alone gives credence to this statement. Take, for example, the Begonia Society, which meets at 7:30 p.m. at Mounts Botanical Garden (531 N. Military Trl., West Palm Beach). The botanical garden actually plays host to a swath of gardening clubs in Palm Beach County, including the Hibiscus Society, the Rare Fruit Council, the Herb Society, and the Orchid Society. The Begonia Society, naturally, is dedicated to begonias, that genus of plant that is shade-loving and easy to reproduce through seeds and stem and leaf cuttings, making them excellent houseplants for anyone with a hint of a green thumb. At tonight's meeting, Johanna Kitson demonstrates how to prune and repot begonias, and the society holds a plant raffle so beginning gardeners can start their work. Admission is free. Call 561-791-1386.
Tuesday, March 11
So you're walking down the street, maybe doing a little window-shopping, when the clumsy oaf next to you slips and falls. You hear a sickening crunch, and the poor fellow's arm appears to be sitting at a very strange angle that no proper arm has any right to. For the kind souls out there who have not given themselves over to the common psychosis of taking pleasure in other people's pain, they may want to know how to address the situation. Join registered nurse Myra Taborek in her Ask-a-Nurse workshop at John D. MacArthur Beach State Park (State Road A1A, north end of Singer Island, North Palm Beach). From 7 to 9 p.m., Taborek lectures and takes questions to help people in emergency situations. The seminar is free with park admission of $3.25 per vehicle. Reservations are required. Call 561-624-6952.
Wednesday, March 12
Every year around this time, the Palm Beach Photographic Centre (55 NE Second Ave., Delray Beach) pre-sents FOTOfusion, which includes several exhibits by some of the finest photographers in the world. But for those whose interest in photography is more than just admiring some nice pictures, the center offers weekly lectures during FOTOfusion that address a multitude of subjects relating to the photographer's art. Shutterbugs have the chance to improve their skills for just $5, free for members of the center. This week, Nancy Brown discusses "Photographing Beauty" and Lewis Kemper covers "Photoshop for Photographers." The talks begin at 7:30 p.m. Call 561-276-9797.