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Go Ahead and Be Nosy

I love that kind of invitation! Can you imagine someone offered that to me? It's like giving candy to a baby!

At the market you never know who you are going to meet--one day it's Richard Gere, and the next it is the owners of Sportstown. Oh wait, I didn't meet Richard Gere, however, I was in the proximity! So, what is Sportstown? I'm fixing to tell you all about it, maybe even more than you want to know....
I should have know it was an interesting place, what with the Scrabble letters on the front. Vicki, one of the owners, after hearing my interest in beer bottle caps, invited me to visit at 10AM on Tuesday. Not one to turn down an offer for a potential photo op, I agreed to meet her there. Was she ever wonderful! It was she, who, once I entered, invited me to be nosy. "It's a big place and there is a lot to see," she said, and boy was she ever right about that!

Not only did I look around, but I asked a few questions. Imagine that! She and her husband have owned the place for 28 years, which in the Orlando bar scene, is practically unheard of. There are a few bars in town that have been around a long time, but very few. Add to that, it has been a bar since the 50's which is even more remarkable. Located on Robinson Avenue, just across the street from the T.G. Lee dairy processing plant, Vicki dreamed up the Milk District idea to attract more attention to the place. Inside they have every kind of entertainment you can think of. Of course there are the pool tables,
along with so many other things I can't even remember. I learned that they have 25 employees helping them run the place, and she is always dreaming up new things to add to her "baby." One thing I absolutely loved was all the retro furniture, mostly in the front part where I was standing while taking the photo above. Tables and chairs--all super cool.
They serve a lot of beer, as in 200 varieties. I do love my wine--beer, I hate. Others, on the other hand, love the stuff, and frequently I have had requests for a still-life related to beer--thus my mission. Vicki plopped down three big Zip-Loc bags of caps, directing me to the ping pong table, which turned out to be perfect, not only because of it's size, but its proximity to a window, meaning I did not need to use my flash. Perfect! At first she left me alone, but after a short while she came over to get in on the fun, making a peace sign with PBR caps. That's Pabst Blue Ribbon to those who are wondering what I'm talking about,  which, according to her, is still raging in the "hipster" community.
There were a lot of caps to sort through....
Originally I thought I would do some shots with domestic and imports, however, she would have none of that. When I placed a Budweiser cap next to, gosh, now I've forgotten, she said that would never do. So, we went on a mission to find all craft beer caps. Now, you may think that is not very interesting, however, that may be because you have never sorted beer caps. After seeing so many, I have no doubt that a lot of thought goes into those things! I was really digging the ones that had little sayings inside. Sadly, that picture did not turn out at all. :(

Asking if I would like her to get out some pool balls I said, of course!
A little after the noon opening time, some young men came in to take advantage of the free pool from 12-7PM.
While we sorting, the afternoon employee came in, and if you can imagine, when Vicki introduced me, Jade immediately said that she knew me--she's purchased several things from me. Orlando is a small town my friends.

So, I told you she has some super cool things in there---my personal favorite is this:
I absolutely love this lighted globe! Seriously, I want one of these bad.
I was very, very impressed with the operation in so many ways. How about that little 8 ball bike rack?

Because they have so many beers, Vicki has some flash cards for the employees---the name of the beer is on one side, with the state/country of origin on the other. She keeps them behind the bar in this:
I had another appointment at 1, so, much as I wanted to stay and do more, I had to cut my visit short. Eating lunch at the bar, I had a sandwich and a COKE! I can't say enough of how much I liked Vicki and am super grateful for her hospitality. Time will tell if folks like the photos I took while there, but even if they don't go over in a big way, I was super blessed to meet someone who has such a passion for making people feel comfortable. The funny thing is, she doesn't like beer either.

From there I scooted over right quick to FAVO to meet Jeannie Albers, a young woman I met while doing the Winter Garden Art Festival.
This is one talented young lady! Not only does she play piano, sing, play ukelele, do wedding photography, and is a marketing guru, she paints. Make that for one year she has painted. She picked my brain about selling art, and I picked hers as well. I had her meet me at FAVO because I thought it might be a good first step in getting her art in front of the public. Will Benton, the fantastic director of FAVO, was kind enough to meet with us. I'm not sure where it will all go. but I'm rooting for Jeannie!

I've just got off the phone with my Valentine who will be home from the airport within the half hour. Time to finish up the meal preparations I've been working on a good bit of the day. As you all know, I'm a bit of a skeptic about most things, including Valentine's Day, but what the heck--it never hurts to show extra love to the one you love. Plus, he allows me to be as nosy as I want!

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