1  Taste at i-Drive 360

Fancy tasting the best of no less than nine Orlando restaurants underneath the impressive vistas of the Orlando Eye?  Taste at the Eye is an opportunity to do just that while raising money for a good cause.  Tickets cost $40 on the door and doors open at 2pm this Sunday, May 1.  As well as tastings from 9 restaurants ticketholders also get discounts on attractions: 25% off the Orlando Eye, Madame Tussauds and Sea Life Aquarium (valid through December 31, 2016).  Participating restaurants include Outback Steakhouse, Sugar Factory, Tin Roof, Cowgirls Rockbar, Paramount Fine Foods, Buffalo Wild Wings, Shake-Shack, Naru Sushi Bar and Tapa Toro.  Proceeds go to Orlando Benefits Esophageal Cancer at Florida Hospital.

2   Beautiful, The Carole King Musical

This musical comes to Orlando’s Dr Phillips Center for the Performing Arts for a run through May 3 – 8 fresh from receiving great reviews at the Straz Center in Tampa.

If you’re not lucky enough to be in Orlando this month, I’d recommend checking out the Dr Phillips Center’s schedule over your vacation dates.  This musical is just one of the great shows it has on its 2016 programme.

3   Siesta Key Sand Sculpture Contest

There’s nothing quite like digging in the sand to help you forget any worries and feel like a kid again.  I must admit to having rather a soft spot for sand sculptures; the art work that goes into these temporary artworks really impresses me.

If you fancy having a go yourself then this competition is free and open to all.  Choose from four categories: Adult Humorous, Adult Miscellaneous, Children 10 and under and Youth 11-17.  It’s an early start: sculpting starts at 9am with judging at 1pm.

But I’d just like to pack some sun cream and wander around watching the sand come to life.

4   Mothers’ Day at the Gardens

Not dropping any hints, obviously, but for a keen amateur gardener I can’t think of a nicer Mothers’ Day treat than a picnic at Bok Tower gardens, perhaps listening to one of the special Mothers’ Day carillon concerts, and then taking a wander around the gift shop plant sale…

Concerts run at 1pm and 3pm on May 7 and 8 and mums go free on May 8.

5   Invictus Games

The Invictus Games is the kind of initiative that could turn the heart of even the staunchest republican, surely?  Prince Harry launched the games in 2014 to use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for wounded, injured and sick Servicemen and women.

Now Orlando gets the chance to witness the prowess of these inspiring athletes May 8 – 12 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

6   Florence and the Machine

Orlando has some great venues for live music and its definitely worth checking out who’s playing when you are here.  From big arena tours to the intimacy of The Beacham and Orlando’s many other great live music venues, the city attracts some great musicians.  Justin Bieber comes to town in June but this month’s Amway Center guests include the fantastic Florence and the Machine.

7   DeSoto County Watermelon Festival

I’m a big fan of local fairs, especially if the theme is all about something good to eat.  De Soto is a good two hours’ drive away from Kissimmee or Davenport, but if you combined this Watermelon Festival with a trip to the beach at Sarasota or an airboat tour at nearby Mayakka River State Park the drive would definitely be worthwhile.

8   Lagoon Fest

On May 21 George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic headline MRC LagoonFest 2016 at the Ted Moorhead Lagoon House in Palm Bay, on the Atlantic Coast, just over an hour’s drive from Kissimmee.  This incredible musical treat is a charity event charity event will generate awareness and funds to produce the first State of the Indian River Lagoon Report Card and tickets are on sale now, with general admission $26 and kids under 10 going free.

Find out more on their site: http://www.mrclagoonfest.com/experience.html

9   Megacon Orlando

At the end of the month, May 26 – 29, MegaCon comes to Orlando.  These “four big days” will be devoted to comics, sci-fi, horror, anime and gaming with plenty of fantastical costumes thrown in for good measure.

There’s a huge line-up of celebrity guests, with celebrity photo and autograph sessions, plus a costume contest (of course) and – one thing I’d love to be a fly on the wall for – speed dating.  The mind boggles…

10  Florida Folk Festival

Kick it back a pace along the banks of the historic Suwannee River in White Springs at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park May 27 – 29 and experience some of the “real Florida”.  White Springs is a good three-and-a-half hours away from Kissimmee, but this festival has been billed as “Florida’s Best Cultural Event” so if you can avail yourself of a tent or hire an RV for a couple of days, it could well be worth the excursion.  You could find yourself enjoying a very different Florida to the one you experience at Disney.

We offer a best-price guarantee on all tickets purchased through us – underwritten by our partners at Kissimmee Guest Services – so if you would like tickets for any of these events you can’t do better than get them through us.  Call me on:

(USA) 321 710 8779

(UK) 0333 332 1411