Royal Poin­ciana Plaza rolls out sum­mer se­ries

Ros­ter of out­door events to in­clude kid-friendly ac­tiv­i­ties.

Palm Beach Daily News - - BUSINESS - By JOHN NELANDER

Fresh off suc­cesses with an out­door events se­ries dur­ing the sea­son, the Royal Poin­ciana Plaza is ready to start a full slate of sum­mer pro­grams aimed at keep­ing up the traf­fic flow dur­ing the warm weather months.

The two-hour events, which kicked off last week, will run Sun­days, Tues­days, Thurs­days and Satur­days through Septem­ber in the plaza’s court­yard, as­sum­ing the weather co­op­er­ates. If not, in­door lo­ca­tions will be used.

Some of the high­lights in­clude Mu­sic in the Court­yard, fea­tur­ing a string trio from the Palm Beach Sym­phony, a visit from zoo an­i­mals for chil­dren and paint­ing classes taught by lo­cal artists.

The Palm Beach Zoo pro­gram will be part of the Wee Royal Hour that will fea­ture of­fer­ings by Bal­let Florida and the South Florida Sci­ence Cen­ter and Aquar­ium.

“We wanted to find ways to part­ner with the com­mu­nity and of­fer

Palm Beach ways to en­joy the plaza,” said Alexan­dra Pat­ter­son, devel­op­ment man­ager and in­terim gen­eral man­ager. “So, we didn’t want to let up on the pro­gram­ming in the sum­mer. We wanted to keep bring­ing the com­mu­nity together even if it’s a slightly dif­fer­ent de­mo­graphic.”

There also will be a yoga se­ries and a sum­mer well­ness se­ries. Sun­days will fea­ture a pro­gram called Backgam­mon + Bubbles, which fea­tures “cus­tom backgam­mon boards” and Cham­pagne from plaza shops. Mu­si­cians from the Palm Beach Sym­phony will per­form July 5, Aug. 2, Aug. 30 and Sept. 27.

“We’ll have a string trio, but we haven’t worked out the spe­cific pieces of mu­sic,” said sym­phony spokes­woman Lisa Bruna. “They will all be cham­ber mu­sic per­for­mances. Some­times they might be a quar­tet or a quin­tet.”

The trio — a vi­o­lin, vi­ola and cello — will pro­vide mu­si­cal back­ground as at­ten­dees mix and min­gle, nib­ble on foods and en­joy a drink.

Kid-friendly events

The Sci­ence Cen­ter will put on pro­grams for kids on July 10, Aug. 7 and Sept. 4. The kick­off event will be called Ni­tro Ma­nia, said Kate Ar­rizza, the cen­ter’s chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer.

“The kids are go­ing to be mak­ing their own liq­uid ni­tro­gen ice cream,” she said. “The cool thing about it is that us­ing liq­uid ni­tro­gen you get to see the phys­i­cal changes and prop­erty changes, and you learn about the states of mat­ter. And then, of course, it cul­mi­nates in the mak­ing of ice cream.”

Kids will make their own soap at the Au­gust event and in Septem­ber they’ll learn about in­sects.

“We ac­tu­ally bring out live in­sects,” said Ar­rizza. “We’ve taken this model and have done it at a few lo­ca­tions, in­clud­ing Har­bour­side up in Jupiter. It’s been re­ally suc­cess­ful.”

Zoo an­i­mals will be brought to the plaza court­yard the last Tues­day of each month from 3 to 5 p.m. Dif­fer­ent an­i­mals will be fea­tured in 30-minute seg­ments, spokes­woman Chris­tine DiRocco said.

“We’re hop­ing to bring as many an­i­mals as pos­si­ble for the seg­ments,” she said. The spe­cific types of an­i­mals are be­ing worked out. “We’ll have some birds for sure, and prob­a­bly some rep­tiles.”

The first visit will fea­ture a model tor­toise while the per­mit­ting process for bring­ing live an­i­mals to the is­land is still un­der­way.

‘Peo­ple loved it’

Plaza of­fi­cials re­ceived a spe­cial ex­cep­tion for the out­door events from the Town Coun­cil in Fe­bru­ary, and the ap­proval will be re­viewed by the coun­cil in Au­gust.

For the most part, town of­fi­cials — in­clud­ing Coun­cil­woman Julie Araskog, who voted against the ex­cep­tion be­cause she wanted an im­me­di­ate re­view if is­sues were raised — said they saw the spring pro­grams as a suc­cess.

“It was ex­per­i­men­tal,” Pat­ter­son said. “We were al­lowed to start do­ing it in March. We had the com­pli­men­tary fit­ness classes in the court­yard and peo­ple were tak­ing ad­van­tage of that and coming week af­ter week. And we had the spa break­fast, and that was a hit.

“Peo­ple crave com­mu­nity. They crave a place to spend time and be with their peers. We were just of­fer­ing an­other way to do that, and peo­ple loved it.”

Allen Eyestone / Daily News

Holly We­ston, owner of Haute Yoga, teaches a free class in the court­yard at the Royal Poin­ciana Plaza in April. Out­door yoga is set to con­tinue through the sum­mer.

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