I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that never has South Florida experienced September Madness like this. When was the last time hopes could legitimately be so high for the fall prospects of the Miami Dolphins (opening their season in Los Angeles on Sunday), Miami Marlins, Inter Miami, the Seminoles, Canes and Owls (sorry, Gators) — all at the same time.
There is more to life than sports, even in South Florida, but the fall season seems to hum with extra energy in local bars and restaurants when the teams are giving Channing Crowder something to get excited about. Just saying.
Weekend burger: Cheffrey Eats (nom de spatula of Guy Fieri-blessed Chef Jeffrey Lemmerman) just unveiled his burger of the month at Barrel of Monks Brewing in Boca Raton, a riff on one of the most enjoyable and poignantly written TV shows of the last 10 years, Hulu’s “The Bear.” The offspring of one of Cheffrey’s signature burgers and an Italian beef sandwich, Da Bear stacks an Angus beef patty with shaved top round, provolone, giardiniera (sort of an Italian vegetable relish), with a side of au jus for dipping. (The name, coined by his Cheffrey’s wife, from Chicago, is also a shoutout to the football team.) Price: $18. Visit Instagram.com/cheffreyeats.
Bourbon dinner: Historic Okeechobee Steakhouse in West Palm Beach on Thursday will host the WhistlePig Bourbon Dinner, pairing the restaurant’s luxurious meat with the pours from the Vermont whiskey distillery in the elegant Okeechobee Prime Event Hall. WhistlePig Distillery’s Ingrid Shawn will be on hand to share insights. The four-course dinner begins at 6:30 p.m. Tickets cost $225+. Visit Facebook.com/beststeakhouse.
Samba before vodka: The Wharf Fort Lauderdale will celebrate Brazilian Independence Day on Thursday beginning at 4 p.m. with live samba and batucada dancers, and a caipirinha bar with 10 flavors of the cocktail for $12 each. The global vibe continues at noon Saturday when the Wharf gets a jump on Oktoberfest with its own celebration of German music and beer, Wharftoberfest. At 5 p.m. Saturday you can chase that beer with Vodkapalooza, the bar’s third annual vodka festival, with more than 150 vodkas on special. Visit WharfFTL.com.
Tangy grooves: Tangerine Dream, the iconic trio whose cinematic sound influenced the rise of Krautrock, EDM and a range of experimental ambient music, kicks off its first full North American tour in more than a decade at 8 p.m. Friday at the Miami Beach Bandshell. Tickets for The Rhythm Foundation-sponsored show cost $38.11 at MiamiBeachBandshell.com.
Boca country: From “People Are Crazy” to his new one, “City Don’t,” country crooner Billy Currington has shown you can sing about the simple virtues of small-town life without getting all high and mighty. Currington plays at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Mizner Park Amphitheater in Boca Raton, with support from Jessie James Decker, his duet partner on “I Still Love You.” Tickets start at $63.50+. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Visit MiznerAmp.com.
Food and drink: Popular West Palm Beach food trailer Third’s BBQ will be found in a new collaboration at Warehouse District distillery Steel Tie Spirits Co. at 6 p.m. Friday. This is a good thing. Visit Facebook.com/ThirdsBBQ.
Weekend laughs: Actor, writer, director and producer Marlon Wayans returns to the stand-up stage this weekend with five shows at the intimate Dania Improv in Dania Beach: 7:30 and 10 p.m. Friday, 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday and 7 p.m. Sunday. Tickets cost $55+ at DaniaImprov.com.
Blue(grass) period: The Art After Dark series returns to the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach on Friday from 5 to 10 p.m., offering docent-led tours of the museum, an open studio session (with Miami-based artist Susan Feliciano) and a live set of invigorating bluegrass by locals Low Ground (7:30-9 p.m.). The Restaurant at the Norton has indoor and outdoor seating on the Sculpture Garden, where you can enjoy food, cocktails, wine, and champagne. Art After Dark admission is $10, students $5. Parking is $5. Visit Norton.org.
Dream on: The Cox Science Center in West Palm Beach has added a new Laser Aerosmith show to its lineup of second-Friday laser concerts under the full-dome planetarium. This Friday’s schedule is Laser Country at 6 p.m., Led Zeppelin at 7 p.m. and Aerosmith at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $13 per show. Popcorn and refreshments will be available for purchase. Visit CoxScienceCenter.org.
Weekend beers: FemAle Brew Fest 2023 will bring at least 40 breweries from all over Florida and beyond to Fort Lauderdale’s Esplanade Park on Saturday, the series’ largest and most diverse edition yet. Created to celebrate the unique creativity that women bring to beer-making and as a forum for sharing their stories, the most obvious virtues of FemAle are pretty simple, as Funky Buddha Brewery’s Kristen Lorow explains: “It’s a beer festival. You can’t not be happy, on a Saturday afternoon, walking around, tasting beers. It’s just a good, happy time.” The event runs from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets start at $45+ at FemAleBrewFest.com, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting Fort Lauderdale-based Abandoned Pet Rescue.
Night fever: Invasive Species Brewing in Fort Lauderdale’s Flagler Village will host the Sourday Night Fever Disco Dance Party to celebrate the can release of a new sour called Disco Fever at 8 p.m. Saturday. DJ WellFed Boy will spin disco classics all night, and there will be a dance contest with $200 on the table. Dress funky. Visit Instagram.com/invasivespeciesbrewing.
Extra Ordinary: One of South Florida’s best tribute bands, Ordinary Boys, the Miami-based homage to The Smiths and Morrissey, will perform on Saturday at Revolution Live in Fort Lauderdale during the alternative flea market known as The Black Market. Expect the band — singer AJ Navarrete, guitarist Byron Lopez, bassist Craig Rittenhouse and drummer Rees Bridges — to conjure up gloriously stubborn memories during “Hand in Glove,” “This Charming Man,” “Bigmouth Strikes Again,” “How Soon is Now?” and the sing-along “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out.” They’ll also do a set as their alter ego, New Dawn Fades, a tribute to the music of Joy Division and New Order. Dubbed Goth Homecoming, this edition of Black Market includes bands including Astari Nite, Blood Orchid and Obsidian, along with vendors, DJs, drag shows, burlesque and goth karaoke. Tickets start at $20. Doors open at 7 p.m. Visit JoinTheRevolution.net.
Laser focused: Odesza will bring a North American leg of their eye-popping The Last Goodbye Tour to iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach on Saturday. Tickets start at $29.50+ for general-admission lawn access at LiveNation.com. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Opening acts include Bob Moses, TOKiMONSTA and QRTR and Olan.
Square crafts: The 27th annual Downtown Delray Beach Craft Festival takes over Old School Square on Saturday and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Visit ArtFestival.com.
Weekend tacos: Flying the Damn Good Hospitality flag, the Fort Lauderdale Taco & Margarita Fest is back at Revolution Live in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday from noon to 5 p.m., with vendors, live music and DJs, a taco-eating contest and a hot chili pepper-eating contest. Tickets for the all-ages, pet-friendly event start at $10+ for 1 p.m. entry, $45+ for VIP access (including noon admission). Visit JoinTheRevolution.net.
Girls day out: So, yes, the Miami Dolphins and most NFL teams start the season on Sunday, and Rhythm & Vine in Fort Lauderdale is having none of it. Instead the buzzy Flagler Village lounge will kick off a new series, Daddy Chill: The Ultimate Girls’ Sunday Funday. Doors open at 3 p.m. with a welcome drink for girls (only) during the first hour, accompanied by throwback jams of the ’90s and 2000s, jewelry pop-ups, giveaways and, of course, rosé pong. Admission to the 21-and-older event is free. Visit Facebook.com/rhythmandvineftl.
Heavy at the Hard Rock: The charismatic Sully Erna and Godsmack will rattle the roof with fan favorites including “I Stand Alone,” “Straight Out of Line,” “Awake” and “Whatever” at Hard Rock Live at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood on Sunday at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $60+ at MyHRL.com.
Ghouls night out: Fright Nights at the South Florida Fairgrounds is looking for a few good freaks to join in their seasonal mayhem with a casting call on Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. at iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach. For details, visit Facebook.com/FrightnightsSFF.