Best Of 2017

Best Use of Our 
Tax Dollars
photo by Amanda Murphy / OCLS

Drag Queen Storytime

June 12, 2017

ocls.info

On June 12, the Orlando Public Library took a page out of the books of sister institutions from San Francisco to Brooklyn and scheduled a Drag Queen story hour. June 12, of course, is officially designated "Orlando United Day: A Day of Love and Kindness," and local performer Miss Sammy was joined by RuPaul's Drag Race contestant BenDeLaCreme for some G-rated storytelling for kiddies and enlightened parents. Talk about a reading rainbow! We pray that they do it again, since the reservations for 500 seats filled up faster than we could snap our fingers. But to the "concerned citizens" who tried to put a damper on this fabulous event with their officious protestations, we have this to say: Sashay away, sourpusses. No, seriously – other people's opinions matter too, so stop trying to pee on everyone's pillow. Don't like it? Don't show up.

Local Color: The best in local media, radio shows, Instagram feeds, activists and more

Local Color

The best in local media, radio shows, Instagram feeds, activists and more.

Best, Biggest, Blondest Hole in Our Hearts
Photo by Rob Bartlett

Billy Manes

May 22, 1972–July 21, 2017

The loss of Orlando Weekly's longest-term writer and foundational voice is devastating not just to his friends and family, not just to his colleagues, but to all of Orlando. Our bereavement is nothing compared to the loss of potential that his departure from this mortal plane represents – but we take some comfort in knowing that his husband, Tony Mauss, has launched the Billy Manes Foundation, which will work to fund various literary and advocacy issues. And, per Billy's request, Mauss will also finish the memoir Billy started but didn't have time to finish. Rest in power, Citizen Manes.

Best Kept Secret

1. Wekiva Island, wekivaisland.com

2. Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour, scenicboattours.com

3. Sanford

Best Local Activist Group

1. One Orlando Alliance, oneorlandoalliance.org

2. Zebra Coalition, zebrayouth.org

3. Food Not Bombs, facebook.com/orlandofoodnotbombs

1. John Morgan

2. Mayor Buddy Dyer

3. Johnny Magic

Best Local Charitable Group

1. Second Harvest Food Bank, feedhopenow.org

2. Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, petallianceorlando.org

3. Give Kids the World, gktw.org

Best Local Podcast

1. "A Mediocre Time With Tom & Dan," tomanddan.com

2. "Scotch and Good Conversation," scotchandgoodconversation.com

3. "BYOCB," byocbshow.com

Best Local Politician

1. Mayor Buddy Dyer

2. Commissioner Patty Sheehan

3. U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy

Best Local Print Columnist

1. Scott Maxwell
Note: Scott Maxwell sent us a dedication request this morning: "Jessica, I’m honored by the voters' support. But this is Billy Manes’ award this year. So I’d like to very respectfully decline – and thank Billy for all he did to make us laugh and cry and think." He's a class act, that Maxwell.

No. 1 in our hearts: Billy Manes

3. Mike Bianchi