Hula dancers and mysterious wood carvings surround you. Sarong-clad maidens come bearing flaming tropical drinks. The music, with pounding drums and ringing guitars, is intoxicating -- or maybe that's the rum. But this night at the Mai-Kai is different from other nights. On this night, the landmark, old-school tiki bar hosts its first Tiki Torch Night,
bringing in an invasion of '50s and '60s culture obsessives and amped-up rock 'n' roll. Area surf-punk band the Dillengers will kick up a racket, and hot rods will be on display outside. Check out tiki carvings by Miami artists Kreepy Tiki, and thumb through Weirdo Deluxe,
a survey of the contemporary retro-pop and outsider-art scene by Matt Dukes Jordan, who'll be signing copies. Complimentary sushi and (of course) pu-pu platters should leverage those strong tropical cocktails. According to organizer Tiki Kiliki (a.k.a. Christie White), shows at Atlanta's Trader Vic's draw hundreds of rabid fans, and she aims for the same here. At future bimonthly installments, expect burlesque shows and exotica music in the mix. How's that for aloha?
Tiki Torch Nights debut at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 14, at the Mai-Kai, 3599 N. Federal Hwy., Fort Lauderdale. Cover is $5. Call 954-563-3272, or visit www.tikikiliki.com.