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Ever Ever Land

There is a Clyde Butcher gallery in the middle of the Everglades. In fact, there are two Clyde Butcher galleries in Florida, one in Venice, the other, Big Cypress Gallery, located in the heart of the swamp at 52388 Tamiami Trail in Ochopee. A man made famous for his piercing environmental shots, Clyde Butcher and his wife, Niki, use this space as both a studio and a photographic art gallery. What surrounds it is a shit ton of acres — wetlands, cypress hammocks, and national park. Saturday to Monday is the annual “President’s Day Weekend Muck-About.” You get to meet the Butchers: Mr. Butcher will sign books, and Mrs. Butcher will show hand-painting demonstrations. An art gallery employee will guide you through a “Swamp Walk.” The swamplands can be a workout, the mucky terrain not as solid as a pool deck, but for those who adventure out there, you’ll understand why people who run galleries in the swamp use majestic words like “subtropical flora and fauna” and not “pretty plants.” What to wear?! They tell ya: long pants, a hat, old tennis shoes. They say bug spray; we say five thick winter coats of bug spray. After the walk, your hot chocolate and coffee will be served by a campfire, so bring a “complete” wardrobe change for that. You can keep a cooler holding lunch and snacks in the changing room, so you should do so. They got you on the bottled water. And don’t forget your waterproof camera — after all, isn’t the Everglades one of the Seven Wonders of In-Water World? Tickets to this event cost $50, but you get 25 bucks to spend in the gallery. Kids under 18 but with an adult are admitted free. Visit clydebutcher.com, call 239-695-2428, or email [email protected]
Sat., Feb. 19, 2011
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Mickie Centrone

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