Hello Fellow Travelers:
Welcome to our world of business information, museums, adventure, birding, botanical gardens, good eating and fine wines. This newsletter provides you with “The Welge Report for Orlando .
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Recognition: We extend special thanks to the people who manage and/or own the institutions, museums and restaurants featured in our guides. In some instances we have relied on their descriptions and photos.
Birding Opps: Info for our birding friends visiting Orlando, FL. Here you will see: Florida Scrub Jay, Snail Kite, Crested Caracara, Bald Eagles, Whooping Crane and Limpkin.
Near Orlando in Kissimmee (experiencekissimmee.com/things-to-do/nature/birding/) is a good destination to see many species.
At (Trails.com) they have maps and guides to help us find our birds.
Nasin Mansurov has wonderful birding photos at (photographylife.com/florida-birding-near-orlando) and other info to help us improve our birding photography
Transportation: It’s best to have a car to get around the Orlando area.
Amtrak (www.amtrak.com) – Your connection to more than 500 stations in 46 states. For online information and train schedules visit www.amtrak.com or call 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245)
Day One: Let’s visit the Orlando Museum of Art – Tu-F: 10-4, Sa,Su: 12-4, 2416 North Mills Ave, 407 896 4231
The OMA’s permanent collection includes African Art from Nigeria, the Ivory Coast and many other areas. American Art after 1945 includes pieces by Sargent, O’Keefe, Ansel Adams and Rauschenberg.
American Art before 1945 shows Martin Anderson. Art of the Ancient Americas features ceramic, jade, stone, gold and silver artifacts from 2000 B.C. to 1521 A.D.
Contemporary American Graphics includes works by Warhol, Ruscha and many others.
Next on your schedule is The Mennello Museum of American Art – Tu-Sa: 10:30-4:30, Su: 12-4:30, 9000 East Princeton St, Loch Haven Park, 407-246-4278
Here you will see an outstanding collection of Earl Cunningham’s works plus a lakeside sculpture garden.
Cunningham’s work has received an overwhelming amount of attention, and he has secured a place as a major Twentieth Century American Folk artist.
Time for lunch at Café Tu Tu Tango – L & D: Daily, 8625 International Drive, 407-248-2222
Here you can start with a Matisse margarita or a Picasso punch, and let the good times roll. They have wonderful small plates so you can have several.
We like the Cajun chicken egg rolls with a creole mustard dipping sauce, the alligator bits with horseradish remoulade and chipotle aioli, the steak skewer with a ginger-soy aioli and the five cheese pizza.
Finish it off with a Lemoncello Luxardo.
The Harry S Leu Gardens – Daily: 9-5, 1920 North Forest Ave, 407-246-2620
The Leu Gardens showcase palms, cycads, flowering trees, azaleas, vines, bromeliads and tropical philodendrons.
As you wind your way through the gardens, you will encounter many different sculptures commissioned for Leu Gardens.
The Leu House Museum is a restored 19th century home listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Dinner is at deep blu seafood grill – D: Nightly, 14651 Chelonia Parkway, Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort, 407-390-2420
They have an appealing raw bar but we suggest the crab cake with sun dried tomato aioli or the seared tuna with ginger and spicy mayo.
Enjoy a glass of ’11 Carabelle Pinot Gris with this course.
For your main go for the Panamanian cobia or the red snapper with a meyer lemon beurre blanc sauce.
The ’09 Vina Vilano tempranillo “Crianza” is a good pairing. The lemon sorbet is a nice way to finish.
Day Two: Breakfast is at First Watch – B & L: Daily, 7500 West Sand Lake Road, 407-363-5622
Eggs any style with your choice of ham, steak, bacon or sausage. Fresh baked homemade biscuits, omelets or homemade granola or muesli.
What’s not to like?
Today is devoted to Uncle Walt and a visit to Walt Disney World. I had the opportunity to meet Walt several times while working at the Illinois Pavilion at the NYWF. Disney debuted his first audio-animatronic figure at our pavilion with the “Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln” presentation.
Walt spoke about his company’s purchase of 28,000 acres in the Orlando area and what he had planned for Walt Disney World – I-4 to exits 25, 26 or 27 and Follow the Signs to the Park of Your Choice, 407-939-6244
The Magic Kingdom – Daily: 9 AM-10 PM
The Magic Kingdom is centered around Cinderella’s Castle. Upon entering you will receive a Magic Kingdom guide map that shows every shop, restaurant and attraction in every land.
Epcot – Daily: 9-9 (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow) –
Epcot is best described by its dedication plaque: “May Epcot entertain, inform and inspire and instill a new sense of belief and pride in man’s ability to shape a world that offers hope to people everywhere.”
Pick up your Epcot Guide map at the guest relations lobby to the left of spaceship earth
Disney-Hollywood Studios – Daily: 9-8
Disney Hollywood Studios is a working movie and TV studio.
Main Streets include Hollywood Blvd and Sunset Blvd plus New York landmarks such as the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building. Get your Disney-Hollywood Studio Guide map as you enter the park.
Disney-Animal Kingdom Theme Park – Daily: 9-5
Disney-Animal Kingdom is divided into five regions and covers more than 500 acres featuring African animals and focuses on issues of extermination. Pick up your guide map upon entering the park.
Rather than making dining suggestions for your meals at WDW we suggest choosing places for lunch and dinner that match your itinerary in the parks. There are lots of good choices.
Day Three: Breakfast is at Dexter’s – B,L,D: Daily, 808 E Washington St, 407-648-2777
Great options prevail to start your day and include: steak and eggs with classic béarnaise sauce, quiche of the day, frittata with a fire roasted enchilada sauce and chipotle sour cream and a Belgium waffle.
Let’s visit Universal Studios – Daily: 9-7, 6000 Universal Boulevard, 407-363-8000
At this real, working film and TV production facility you’ll find an amazing array of rides, shows, movie sets and attractions that put you right in the picture.
Lunch is at the Ravenous Pig – L & D: Tu-Sa, 1234 N. Orange Ave, Winter Park, 407-628-2333
Start with the charcuterie that comes with grilled bread, pickled vegetables and grainy mustard or the smoked rainbow trout dip with caviar and pumpernickel toast points.
Next is your choice between the rock shrimp tacos with cilantro, avocado, jalapeno and slaw or the pub burger with onions and blue cheese on a brioche bun.
The ’11 Davis Bynum Pinot Noir is your wine.
Winter Park is home to Rollins College where you will find the Cornell Fine Arts Museum – Tu-F: 10-4, Sa,Su: 12-5, 1000 Holt Ave, Winter Park, 407-646-2526
Their permanent collection includes the works of Albert Bierstadt, Alex Katz, John Frederick Kensett, Henri Matisse, Thomas Moran, Pablo Picasso, Ed Ruscha, Tintoretto, and Tiepolo among many other artists.
CFAM also presents traveling exhibitions that change seasonally and feature outstanding works of art from the early Renaissance to cutting-edge contemporary.
The Rollins College campus has a beautiful setting that overlooks Lake Virginia.
While in Winter Park let’s visit the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art – Tu-Sa: 9:30-4, Su: 1-4, 445 N Park Ave, Winter Park, 407-645-5311
If you are a fan of Louis Comfort Tiffany (shown above) this is mecca.
The Museum’s Tiffany collection includes jewelry, pottery, paintings, art glass, leaded-glass windows and lamps, and the chapel interior the artist designed for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
The Arts and Crafts Collection includes works by Gustav Stickley, the Roycrofters, and others. The Museum’s collection contains American leaded-glass windows by Tiffany contemporaries such as Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, John La Farge and Arthur Nash.
The Sculpture Collection includes works by Thomas Crawford, Hiram Powers, Daniel Chester French and John Rogers.
For your final meal in the Orlando area we suggest Luma on Park – L: F-Su, D: Nighlty, 290 South Park Ave, 407-599-4111
Start with the sea urchin with horseradish-apple coulis and pickled swiss chard or the roasted broccolini salad with baby beets, hazelnuts and truffled pecorino dressed with a caramelized honey vinaigrette.
Have a glass of the Au Bon Climat Pinot Blanc blend.
For your main it’s the Duroc pork loin with cannelloni beans, sauerkraut, butternut squash and fuji apple relish or the flank steak with faro salad, oyster mushrooms and roasted fennel.
Either entrée calls for the White Hall Vineyards Petit Verdot. Coffee Pot de Crème is our dessert with dark chocolate sorbet and maladon salt.
Until next time, best wishes and happy travels,
Dick & Dee Welge
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