(Press Release) (Lake Worth Beach, FL – February 7, 2024) Dave Lawrence, President & CEO of the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County, welcomed 175+ members and supporters to “a writers’ reunion” at last Monday’s CULTURE & COCKTAILS. The theme of the 19th annual season of the popular series is Looking Back, Looking Forward. The informative, fun, and funny chat fest was held on Monday February 5, in the beautiful rooftop ballroom of The Ben.
A Revealing Conversation with Best Selling Author James Patterson
In the last live CULTURE & COCKTAILS before the pandemic shutdown, literary legend James Patterson interviewed Palm Beach Post columnist Leslie Gray Streeter about her first book Black Widow. Four years later, they were both back in reversed roles.
+ James Patterson is the most popular storyteller of our time. He is the creator of unforgettable characters and series, including Alex Cross, the Women’s Murder Club, Jane Effing Smith, and Maximum Ride, and of breathtaking true stories about the Kennedys, John Lennon, and Princess Diana, as well as our military heroes, police officers, and ER nurses. He has coauthored #1 bestselling novels with Bill Clinton and Dolly Parton, told the story of his own life in James Patterson by James Patterson, and received an Edgar Award, nine Emmy Awards, the Literarian Award from the National Book Foundation, and the National Humanities Medal. His latest mystery release is Holmes, Marple & Poe: The Greatest Crime-Solving Team of the Twenty-First Century.
+ Leslie Gray Streeter is the former pop culture columnist for The Palm Beach Post, where she covered music, movies, celebrities, staycations and more. Currently, she writes for The Baltimore Banner and appears regularly on WJZ-TV/CBS. Her memoir, Black Widow, was published by Little, Brown & Company, and her first novel is coming out soon. She is also a podcaster, a public speaker, and describes herself as “a writer, a mommy, a widow, a daughter, a darned good friend, and the person who’ll eat fries with you after we run a marathon. Because fries are delicious.”
This season’s final CULTURE & COCKTAILS will be:
A Conversation with Music on the Jazzy Past & Future of the Legendary Sunset Lounge
Participants in this season’s final CULTURE & COCKTAILS include:
+ Alisha R. Winn, Ph.D., is an applied cultural anthropologist, historian, and consultant for community and heritage education projects who lives in the neighborhood around the Sunset Lounge, the Historic Northwest. An adjunct professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University’s School of Ministry, she is the founder of Consider the Culture, was director for the Palm Beach County African American Virtual Oral History Project and served as a board member for the City of West Palm Beach Mayor’s Taskforce for Racial and Ethnic Equality.
+ Avery Sommers is a South Florida treasure and Broadway veteran with a “powerhouse” voice (The New York Times) and charismatic stage presence. She appeared on Broadway in Ain’t Misbehavin’ replacing Nell Carter, Chicago, Showboat, and Broadway, and was in the first national tours of both The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (starring Ann-Margret) and Chicago, for which she won a Los Angles Ovation Award for Best Supporting Actress. Locally Sommers has headlined concerts at the Kravis Center, Café Centro, Arts Garage, Palm Beach Institute for the Entertainment Arts, and the much-missed Royal Room Cabaret at The Colony Hotel, Palm Beach.
+ Copeland Davis is an Emmy-nominated pianist who has appeared on the Tonight Show, was inducted into the Las Vegas Entertainers Hall of Fame, and has wowed audiences at the Kravis Center, Arts Garage, Cafe Centro, Duncan Theatre, and at The Dream Awards, Las Vegas last October.
Moderator: Barbara Cheives, is the President and CEO of Converge & Associates Consulting, specializing in race and ethnic relations consulting, employee relations, and community engagement.
The 2024 season of CULTURE & COCKTAILS is generously sponsored by The Roe Green Foundation, Roe Green, Founder; Donald M. Ephraim Family Foundation; Milton and Tamar Maltz; Jean Sharf; Bonnie Lautenberg; Lesser Lesser Landy & Smith, PLLC; Scott Teich, Senior Vice President, Teich Wealth Management of Raymond James; The Gardens Mall; CIBC Private Wealth; Palm Beach Media Group; Palm Beach Daily News; Legends Radio; and PR-BS, a Boca-based public relations firm. Additional sponsorship opportunities are still available by calling Debbie Calabria, the Cultural Council’s Senior Director of Stewardship, at 561.471.2901.
Admission to each one of this season’s CULTURE & COCKTAILS At The Ben is $125 per person, and $165 for VIP Seating. For tickets, please visit https://www.palmbeachculture.com/event/culture-cocktails-pages/.
All proceeds from CULTURE & COCKTAILS go to support the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County’s mission to champion, engage, and grow the arts in Palm Beach County.
Topics and speakers are subject to change depending upon the availability of scheduled participants.
Exploring what to see and do in North Palm Beach and the South Florida area. Your hosts are Pam and Gerry Barker.
Listen to Chapter One of "Panama Palmer"