DUNEDIN — Living in Florida is different than vacationing here. For the real scoop on Florida's natural world, authentic island recipes, historical delicacies and breathtaking art, stop by the Painted Fish Gallery in Dunedin tonight.
Artists and gallery owners Bill and Linda Renc will host an Authors Night with guests Terry Fortner and Linda Taylor during the 2nd Friday Dunedin Art and Wine Walk. Bill Renc and two other local authors will talk about their projects and sign and sell their books. Art will be for sale, too.
The Rencs have let books take center stage before in the gallery they have owned for almost 18 years, but tonight's event is different.
"We've had authors signing at the gallery, but not on 2nd Friday," Renc said. "Second Friday brings people downtown and into the gallery. Some may not know about the book signing. They may kind of stumble in, but I think they will find this of interest."
Renc, a native Floridian, knows of what he speaks. So do the other two authors who have written about life in Florida now and in the past.
Fortner's new book, Caladesi Cookbook: Recipes From a Florida Lifetime, is a compilation by her and her sister and co-writer, Suzanne Thorp, granddaughters of Myrtle Scharrer Betz. Betz lived on Caladesi for 40 years, and her recipes reflect life and times on the island.
Taylor's book, Great Women Exploring Nature, shows natural Florida through the stories of 10 prominent American women, including Zora Neale Hurston, Rachel Carson and Marjory Stoneman Douglas, whose lives were affected by the state.
Linda Renc created the calligraphy and maps for Taylor's book. Bill Renc painted the art for the cover.
Painting the Town and the Beaches, Bill Renc's full-color art book about Dunedin, Honeymoon Island and Caladesi Island, was published in February. While several of the original artworks he created for it have been sold, many are still on display in the gallery.
"The event has a local flavor," he said. "The topics have generated from right here, specifically Terry Fortner's book and mine. All three authors are local. They're not coming in from out of town to promote a book. We're right here. We're part of the town. People should come to get a taste of genuine creativity for the uniqueness of this area."
Correspondent Theodora Aggeles can be reached at cotheo@ tampabay.rr.com.