After Dr. Angel Perez passed away due to kidney cancer, his wife and children discovered a way to honor his memory. Sonia Perez and her daughters were hosting a recreational picnic for his former patients, many of whom were affected by congenital heart defects (CHD) or childhood acquired heart disease, when they realized that these patients and their families needed somewhere they could gather and receive non-medical financial, emotional, and social support outside the hospital. The Perez family founded Angel's Pediatric Heart House to fill this need. The organization provides free programs and services to South Florida children living with CHD such as financial support during a child’s hospital stay; family fun day social events, which provide opportunities for cardiac kids and their families to come together; monthly hospital outreach to three area children’s hospitals and a free infant items donation program through a partnership with a national baby store retailer. Its programs also function as a tool for group healing. Mommy and Me groups provide opportunities to gain support, the Miles and Millas program delivers care packages to kids undergoing heart surgery, and a national CHD awareness campaign spreads encouragement to families and distributes Heart Shadow Buddies to kids in hospitals.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
The humor ambassadors of Fort Lauderdale Comedy Club stock their Oakland Park stage with snickers and snorts as audiences savor the jokes of headlining local and national comedians. Shirking the detached feel of stuffy theaters, smoky halls, and abandoned wells, Fort Lauderdale Comedy Club grants audiences an intimate standup comedy experience as fans catch every punch line and smell every punch breath. The ever-changing calendar features a solid crew of human antidepressants, such as lanky LA funnyman Eric Grady (March 23–24), who cooks up buffets of hee-haws with observational humor about marriage, stepchildren, and the perils of being 6 feet, 9 inches tall. Funny bones flee their ligaments as veteran standup comedian, television actor, and host at Tampa Bay Newstalk 820 AM Artie Fletcher (March 30–31) deposits hefty loads of jokes accrued from 25 years on the road. Groups of two or four can chase down meaty laughs with wine and beer (a $5 value each) or a refreshing, alcohol-free soda (a $3 value). Dress codes are comfortable and casual, and all hecklers will be shunned and turned into chum.
If Victor Frankenstein ever took a break from science to design a 5K race, the result would have probably looked something like a Hybrid Hell Run event. Each race in the Hybrid Hell Run series is similar to Frankenstein’s monster: races are gritty, spread out across misshapen terrain, and require every ounce of physical and mental strength to survive.
With each of its races cranking up the intensity level, the series selects locations that are naturally challenging, such as forests, hills, or M. C. Escher’s labyrinthine backyard. The HHR team then brews up a ruthless lineup of physical challenges, maintaining focus on three main categories—cardiovascular endurance, strength, and speed and agility. The finished course tests the athletic prowess of male, female, and youth divisions, with top performers receiving cash rewards.
In 1989, Young At Art began as a small, 3,200-square-foot children’s museum dedicated to shaping young minds and enriching the community through the transformative power of art. Since then, the tiny workshop has grown into a 55,000-square-foot collection of activities celebrating the diverse influences of art on our lives and imaginations, garnering a rare accreditation by the American Association of Museums for its efforts. At ArtScapes—one of the four main exhibits—kids and their parents travel through The Cave, a frantic slideshow of images conveying 5,000 years of human history, step into a replica of a New York City subway car, and view examples of graffiti as a means of creative expression against the oppressive forces of aluminum spray cans.
Elsewhere, WonderScapes transports children up to 4 years old to a world inspired by the illustrations of DeLoss McGraw, whose version of Alice in Wonderland won the Society of Illustrators Book of the Year award in 2002, and GreenScapes demonstrates the immutable intersection of art and the environment as visitors build sculptures from natural materials. Never ones to ignore their creativity, teenagers can find refuge in the Teen Center, where a graphic design lab with Mac computers and a recording studio let them convert their pre-calc homework into digital form before it’s too late.
The saloons of yesteryear didn't usually stretch across12,000 square feet. But at Cowboys Saloon, a modern take on the watering holes of the Old West, visitors have plenty of space to dig into a hearty meal, grab drinks from one of three full liquor bars, or kick up their spurred heels on the 2,000-square-foot dance floor. Live concerts, weekly events, three pool tables, and a mechanical bull help the saloon attract passersby and extroverted tumbleweeds to its tables.