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A night out in Fun City » Opinion » Cordele Dispatch, Cordele, GA on Astini News

St. Simons Island —

With Disneyworld, Sea World, Universal Studios, high-rises, posh resorts, a multitude of fancy eateries, Kissimmee and Old Town nearby, Orlando, Florida can probably get by with the dub, "Fun Capital, USA. Excitement is there for you 24/7 and you don't have to look far to find it.

B. J. and I were spending some quality time at Bonnet Creek, our smart new Wyndham resort encapsulated within the Disneyworld arena. Using a trite but appropriate phrase to describe it, Bonnet Creek "has it all" within walking distance, including Disneyworld.

When vacationing, even though the amenities offered by our timeshares are abundant and stimulating, B. J. and I like to circulate the area outside whatever resort we may be staying. Orlando being an entertaining place invites the curious to prowl into the night to check out any exhilarating fun and food lurking there. In the past, we have dined at many excellent eateries in Orlando and its environs, including Emeril's at Universal Studios (featuring Cajun). This time we wanted to do something different.

Along with our key card, the concierge always presents us with a gift packet. Included in the packet is a list of things to do and choice places to dine, and coupons that give discounts. B. J. loves these packets, especially the discount coupons.

In our condo, we were leafing through the contents of the packet. Something caught my eye: "Al Capone's Dinner and Show. Get the prohibition era speakeasy experience. Knock three times and then feast on buffet-style Italian fare with a musical show based on the life of 30's era gangster Al Capone."

Al Capone's would indeed be different. Across the years, B. J. and I have had a flair for getting off the beaten path and doing the "different." According to the flyer in the packet, this "different" would be expensive.

The activities would begin at 8 p.m. and last until 10:30 p.m. Wow! We talked it over and made up our minds. Al Capone's it would be.

Reservations were required. B. J. called the speakeasy to make reservations. The girl on the phone told her, "The activities and dinner begin at 8 p.m., but if you are here by 7 p.m., I will see that you have a choice table for two in the balcony."

"That's great! We'll be there," B. J. replied excitedly.

Al Capone's wasn't too far from Bonnet Creek. We had some time on our hands. We would explore Bonnet Creek and have lunch while waiting.

At approximately 6 p.m., B. J. programmed Al Capone's address into "Blondie" our GPS and we headed out into our evening adventure. Blondie guided us around the perimeter of Disneyworld. We could look over and see some of the things going on over there. We remembered the fun times we had there with our family several years ago.

Blondie cannot be trusted 100 percent of the time but this time, although the traffic was somewhere between moderate and heavy, she didn't miss a turn.

Arriving at Al Capone's parking lot, we found it virtually empty. We located Little Blue a comfortable stall, dismounted and made the short walk to the entrance which was under the protection of a real "tough guy" dressed in mobster attire.

Inside, since only a few people were there, we purcha$ed our ticket$$, and were given our password to get into the speakeasy. The password was "2 Cherry Cokes". We were excited.

There was a gift shop, so while we waited we browsed and purchased some items reminiscent of the gangster days in Chicago. I bought an Al Capone hat and she bought a cup.

Shortly, the word was given and we lined up to go into the speakeasy. A camouflaged door in the wall opened. A "mobster" appeared from inside and gruffly demanded our password as we entered the semi-dark room. "Gangsters" were everywhere. Some carried shoulder holsters with big "pistols," plastic I'm sure.

A jazzy kind of music came over loudspeakers. A crusty talking "goon" escorted us up a flight of stairs with lights on the banisters and around the dim balcony to a bar where the bartender asked us, "What's ya poison? There's a special tonight on shine by the fruit jar?" Well, we were not quite up to "shine by the fruit jar" so we ordered Sprite and Coke. He gave us a yucky looking frown as he served us.

Then our escort led us to a cozy table by the balcony railing where he seated us. We had a great view overlooking the stage. A kind of scary excitement pervaded as the "thugs" moved among us with their "guns." Out on the floor, colorfully made up girls dressed in flashy attire, prissed gaily among the people. They told us that the buffet would be opening soon. We waited anxiously.

Continued next week.

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