This Lake Worth woman is one of Playboy magazine’s first centerfolds

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She’s been a catalog model, cigarette girl, Vegas cocktail waitress, New York theater actress and bit part player in an Oscar-winning movie.

But it was one photo session in the early 1950s that sealed Neva Gilbert’s claim to pop culture fame. The Lake Worth resident was one of Playboy magazine’s earliest centerfolds, Miss July 1954, a beautiful, long-legged blonde posed alluringly across a tiger skin rug.

“I’m the oldest living Playboy Playmate,” she proudly tells people.

But is she?

Find out, and see more photos of Gilbert then and now, in our story:

THE CENTERFOLD NEXT DOOR

 

Photos: Who was the Witch of Wellington? The answer with amazing photos

Suzan Strauss was known as the Lava Lady in Los Angeles in the 1990's, where she let photographer Osker Jimenez capture her in her DIY couture. (Osker Jimenez Exposure House)
Suzan Strauss on a street near her Los Angeles home in the 1990’s. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
In Wellington, Strauss was a regular at local thrift stores. (Lourdes Cabrera)
In Wellington, Strauss was a regular at Wellington thrift stores. (Lourdes Cabrera)

In Florida’s suffocating heat, she wore head-to-toe black, as if in mourning a loss.

Consequently, locals dubbed her the Witch of Wellington.

Read the full story about this eccentric Wellington and Los Angeles icon

But in Los Angeles in the 1980’s and ’90’s, Suzan Strauss was a street style star for the colorful outfits she designed, always worn with platform boots as high as horses’ hooves and a towering hat covering her hair.

The effect, said photographer Osker Jimenez, was to make her look seven feet tall as she glided slowly along Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood, among the era’s pierced punks, dark goths and glam rock kids.

Fascinated with this self-assured, eccentrically-dressed woman, Jimenez photographed her for a decade, eventually publishing two books and staging a photo exhibition of his Strauss photos.

Photographer Osker Jimenez had an art gallery show of his photos of Strauss superimposed against stark landscapers. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
Photographer Osker Jimenez had an art gallery show of his photos of Strauss superimposed against stark landscapes. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)

 

The Lava Lady waters her garden from the lava rock wall surrounding her Los Angeles home. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
The Lava Lady waters her garden from the lava rock wall surrounding her Los Angeles home. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)

 

 

Strauss' Wellington home, where she constructed semi-circular courtyards at each end of the house, which was decorated with a row of upside down flower pots. (Post photo/Barbara Marshall)
Strauss’ Wellington home, where she constructed semi-circular courtyards at each end of the house, which was decorated with a row of upside down flower pots. (Post photo/Barbara Marshall)

 

(Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
(Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
(Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
Strauss was born to an Orthodox Jewish family. In accordance with custom, she always wore hats or wigs to cover her hair. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
In Los Angeles, she carefully cultivated the garden surrounding her home. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
In Los Angeles, she carefully cultivated the garden surrounding the lava rock-covered home that gave her the name “Lava Lady.” (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
Another of Jimenez' photos of Strauss, superimposed on a background of fireworks. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)
Another of Jimenez’ photos of Strauss, superimposed on a background of fireworks. (Osker Jimenez/Exposure House)

Trump’s Mar-A-Lago paintings back in news after presidential debate

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One of the weirder sideshows of the presidential season is all the attention paid to portraits of Donald Trump.

At Wednesday night’s debate, Trump attacked Hillary Clinton over donations accepted by her family’s Clinton Foundation. She sparred back, mentioning his use of money by the Trump Foundation:

“I’d be happy to compare what (the Clinton Foundation does) with the Trump Foundation, which took money from other people and bought a 6-foot portrait of Donald. I mean, who does that? It just was astonishing.”

Clinton was referring to a six-foot tall portrait of Trump by Palm Beach County artist Michael Israel. The Washington Post reported that Trump Foundation money was used by Trump to buy the portrait during an auction at his Palm Beach mansion-club, Mar-A-Lago.

As Post reporter Jennifer Sorentrue wrote in a story on the controversy:

The 2007 painting sold for $20,000. According to Israel and press reports, Trump’s wife, Melania, bid $10,000 for the piece, before the auctioneer pushed her to double that number. The Donald J. Trump Foundation cut the check for the artwork, raising questions about whether the foundation broke IRS rules by bidding on an item that might have benefited Trump directly.

The charity auction was for the local non-profit HomeSafe, which helps children with housing issues. Since that story broke, Israel painted another portrait of Trump to help HomeSafe raise money. With a minimum bid of $15,000, nobody bid on the portrait and the online auction was closed.

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This isn’t the only story recently about a Trump painting. Reporters have been buzzing all election season about a Trump portrait hanging in the bar at Mar-A-Lago and the backstory of why Trump insisted that the hand on the portrait be repainted.

You can read the full story of that here:

Why did Trump insist artist repaint his hand on Mar-A-Lago portrait?

 

Can your scarecrow scare a crowd?

It’s your chance to be creative, scare some kids and win some cash! Once again, it’s time for the Annual Scarecrow Festival & Contest in downtown West Palm Beach which is Saturday, Oct. 22 at 2 p.m. You’re welcome.

This spooky and interactive festival, presented by the Historical Society of Palm Beach County, brings large crowds of local businesses, schools, families and community groups. So far, the Facebook event has 2.1k people interested in attending, and 200 confirmed for attending. And why wouldn’t you go? The cash prizes include the People’s Choice $300 prize, 1st place $200 prize, and 2nd place $100 prize.

Sawyer Smith, 2, of West Palm Beach, gets a high five from Curator of Education Tony Marconi during the Historical Society of Palm Beach County Scarecrow Festival and Contest in West Palm Beach on October 25, 2014. (Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)
Sawyer Smith, 2, of West Palm Beach, gets a high five from Curator of Education Tony Marconi during the Historical Society of Palm Beach County Scarecrow Festival and Contest in West Palm Beach on October 25, 2014. (Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)

In addition to the scarecrow competition, this event will have plenty of family fall favorites like pumpkin decorating, a haystack hunt, museum tours, face painting, and plenty of music and food.

Related: Check out other Halloween events happening this fall

The 2014 winning Youth category scarecrow, featuring a “Frozen” theme, was made by students from Palm Beach Public Elementary. Representing the school are (from left) Layla Chong, Karina Chong, art teacher Jenn Petti and her daugher Kendall Petti, Juliana LaPapa and Angela Frankland.
The 2014 winning Youth category scarecrow, featuring a “Frozen” theme, was made by students from Palm Beach Public Elementary.

 If you attend events primarily for the food and drinks, this one is no exception. According to the event, this year’s agriculture booths will be better than ever, with a lot more organic foods to choose from. And, for those with a sweet tooth, bring some extra cash to buy all kinds of baked goodies. Did I mention there’s also a pie eating contest? 

Friends Parker Pressly, 7, left, and Georgina Keogh, 8, of Palm Beach, start the pie eating contest during the Historical Society of Palm Beach County Scarecrow Festival and Contest in West Palm Beach on October 25, 2014. (Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)
Friends Parker Pressly, 7, left, and Georgina Keogh, 8, of Palm Beach, start the pie eating contest during the Historical Society of Palm Beach County Scarecrow Festival and Contest in West Palm Beach on October 25, 2014. (Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)

Important: The deadline to enter the scarecrow contest is Thursday, Oct. 19, 2016. Entry forms are available online at hspbc.org or http://bit.ly/2auwgcJ.

The Details:

When: 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22, 2016.

Where: The Richard and Pat Johnson Palm Beach County History Museum. 300 N. Dixie Highway. West Palm Beach, Fl. 33401. Free event parking on 4th street

Contact: For ticket and group tickets: 561-832-4164, ext. 103 or www.historicalsocietypbc.org.

Cost: $10 per person (kids under 3 free). All inclusive Available at the door and in advance at www.hspbc.org

 

No need to crack your piggy bank to attend this music festival

Music festivals are always a blast, especially when you get to hear your favorite jams, remixes or original songs while having your arms around your buddies (or special someone) and signing along. However, while some music spectacles can be very pricey, this upcoming one up is not! Head over to the free “Damn Glad to Party with You” music festival this Saturday, Oct. 15 at CSW Bar + Kitchen in Lake Worth.

Kai Schneider, left, and Remy Max hold each other while waiting for Skrillex to perform during the third day of the Okeechobee Music Festival in Okeechobee, Florida on Saturday, March 5, 2016. (Daniel Owen / The Palm Beach Post)
Kai Schneider, left, and Remy Max hold each other while waiting for Skrillex to perform during the third day of the Okeechobee Music Festival in Okeechobee, Florida on Saturday, March 5, 2016. (Daniel Owen / The Palm Beach Post)

Related: 7 music concerts you must see this fall

The event’s Facebook page already shows more than 45 people are attending!

The Avett Brothers perform to a packed crowd on the final night of the Okeechobee Music Festival in Okeechobee, Florida on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Daniel Owen / The Palm Beach Post)
The Avett Brothers perform to a packed crowd on the final night of the Okeechobee Music Festival in Okeechobee, Florida on Sunday, March 6, 2016. (Daniel Owen / The Palm Beach Post)

If great music, a fantastic Indie craft bazaar and unique beers can’t get you through 12 hours of partying from 2 p.m. to 2 a.m, then there’s seriously something wrong with you. I’m only kidding, but really, this event has plenty of fun to get you going.

Kent LawlerCheck and DJ’s Layne Fox will set the mood throughout this event, by performing between live performances. The live music line up is here:

Bobby Lee Rogers Trio

Crazy Fingers

Victoria Cardona

Chloe Dolandis

Solemark

 

 

The Deets:
What: “Damn Glad To Party With You” Music Festival
When: 2 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 15
Where: CWS Bar + Kitchen. 522 Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth
Cost: Free Cover. Take cash for drinks and food.
Contact: www.cswlw.com or call (561)318-5637. #damngladtomeetyou

Lighten up your life with these events in Jupiter!

As if the Jupiter Lighthouse isn’t enough to put a smile on your face, this iconic 1860 structure is hosting several activities and programs for adults and the entire family.

“Our award-winning staff and volunteers provide tours, visitor services, programming and educational experiences to over 75,000 annual visitors,”according to The Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse website.

See for yourself, why so many tourists visit this beauty by checking out our gallery and by attending following events:

TWILIGHT YOGA AT THE LIGHT

Floor mat, check.
Water bottle, check.
Flashlight, check.
Elasticity…. Don’t worry, this is an all-level yoga class! Beginners encouraged.

Submitted by Mike Morrill
Submitted by Mike Morrill

Relax and enjoy a yoga experience on the lighthouse deck at sunset and resuming once it’s dark out.

When: Every Monday: 6 to 7 p.m.
Oct. 17, 24 and 31.
Nov. 7, 14, 21 and 28.
Dec. 5, 12, 19 and 26.

Where: Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum, 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter

Cost: Donation.

Contact: 561-747-8380 X101. or visit the Jupiter Lighthouse website.

Note: Meet at the museum 10 minutes prior to start time, the class is weather dependent, please check the website for updates and future start times.

LIGHTHOUSE SUNSET TOUR

This tower reaches a height of 105 feet above the water, and you get to climb as you learn its history. Once you’ve made it to the top, you’ll reward yourself with beautiful sunsets from this amazing landmark. Bring your camera!

Submitted by Christopher Lopez I've been doing night security at Utiki Beach for nearly 2 years now and there really isn't much to photograph that doesn't in some way have the lighthouse involved. I took this photograph a couple weeks ago and the lightning flashed perfectly. I used a Canon 7D MarkII with a 50mm lens on a tripod. 20 second exposure at f/7.1 ISO 100. I have tons of varying pictures of the light house involving anything from lightning to sunrises.
Submitted by Christopher Lopez

Sunday, August 7, is National Lighthouse Day. The Jupiter Lighthouse celebrated with special admission fees. Visitors from Russia, Italy, Mexico and Argentina were among the approximately 263 visitors climbing the 105 steps to the top of lighthouse on Sunday. Kelly Foote, visiting from Holland Patent, New York is helped down the steps by her 5 year old daughter Corinne. "I was a little scared," said Foote, "I had to conquer my fear of heights." (Melanie Bell / The Palm Beach Post)
The Jupiter Lighthouse. (Melanie Bell / The Palm Beach Post)

Opens: Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016, beginning with an inside look at the nuts & bolts of a working lighthouse watch room. The tours are 75 minutes long.

WhenOct. 19, Nov. 2 & 30, and Dec. 14 & 28.  6 to7:15 pm.

Where: Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum. 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter

Cost: $15 Members, $20 non-members. RSVP required.

Contact: 561-747-8380 X101 or visit the Jupiter Lighthouse website.

Note: Children must be at least 48” tall to climb the tower.

LIGHTHOUSE STORY TIME & CRAFTS FOR KIDS

Hey parents: It’s picnic time for you and the little ones! This 45-minute program includes craft activities and story time about the Lighthouse Keepers, Florida history, people, local plants and animals. Bring your sandwiches, floor mat and juice boxes to start your day under the Lighthouse Seminole Chickee Hut. Oh, and don’t forget your kids.

He's got the lighthouse in his hands! Kevin Brown, 14, of Jupiter, was waiting in the parking lot of the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum, waiting for the rest of the Boy Scouts from Troop 132 of Palm Beach Gardens to arrive for the lighthouse tour. He got creative for dad Mitchell Brown's camera. Contributed
Kevin Brown of Jupiter. (Contributed)

When: Nov 1, Dec 6. 10:30 to 11:15 a.m.

WhereJupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum, 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter

Cost: Free Program, RSVP required Friday before the program date.

Contact: 561-747-8380 X101 or visit the Jupiter Lighthouse website

Note:  Ideal for kids ages 8 and under.

HIKE THROUGH HISTORY

Put on your hiking gear, pack lots of water and splash some sunscreen. Get on your best Indiana Jones attitude and get ready to discover the topography and natural history of Jupiter’s 120-acre conservation lands. This two-mile excursion passes through several historic points around the lighthouse.

Glenn Salts III was raised in Jupiter and now lives in Palm Beach Gardens. He's had the Jupiter Lighthouse tattoo on his back for five years. Why? "It's one of my favorite places in the world!" Contributed
Glenn Salts III was raised in Jupiter and now lives in Palm Beach Gardens. He’s had the Jupiter Lighthouse tattoo on his back for five years. Why? “It’s one of my favorite places in the world!” (Contributed)

When: Nov 5, Dec 3. 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Where: 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter. The hike departs from the flag pole at the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum.

Cost: Admission is free but space is limited; rsvp required.

Contact: 561-747-8380 X101 or visit the Jupiter Lighthouse website.

Note: The minimum age for children is 5.  Ages 13 & under must be accompanied by an adult who is at least 18 years old.

LIGHTHOUSE MOONRISE TOUR

Sunrises and sunsets always get the credit, yet moonrises are just as amazing. We’re lucky to live by the east coast because we can see the moon rising from the Atlantic! Sometimes the moon puts on a bright silver costume but when she’s feeling frisky, she turns bright red.

Submitted by Jeffrey Bundonis-Tequesta,Fl. April 2016 full moon rise taken from the north side of the bridge.
April 2016 full moon rise taken from the north side of the bridge. (Submitted by Jeffrey Bundonis-Tequesta)

When:  Nov. 14, and Dec. 13. 4:45 to 6:00 p.m.

Where: Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum. 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter

Cost: $15 Members, $20 non-members, rsvp required.

Contact:  561-747-8380 X101 or visit the Jupiter Lighthouse website.

Note: Children must be at least 48” tall to climb the tower.

Lighthouse River Rendezvous

This is the Cadillac of all of these events. A must-attend social gathering that celebrates the history of the iconic Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse and its photographers who have captured the landmark at its very best.

Submitted by J Michael Carlisle, Tequesta, Florida This photograph was taken at dawn from the soccer field adjacent to the Jupiter Lighthouse during the holiday season (notice the decoration around the top of the lighthouse) . I used a Nikon D300 camera. The exposure was 1 sec at f5.6 with a Nikkor 70-200mm f2.8 lens. Editing was done with Photoshop. This was the best of approximately 300 exposures.
“This photograph was taken at dawn from the soccer field adjacent to the Jupiter Lighthouse during the holiday season.” (Submitted by J Michael Carlisle, Tequesta)

Enjoy a live music, hors d’oeuvres from Jupiter’s top restaurants, choose among fine beers and wines and participate in the magical silent auction. You’ll take home a limited edition 2017 Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse Calendar and meet and greet the photographers of social media who made it possible.

When: Nov, 19, 2016, 6 to 9:00 p.m.

WhereJupiter Inlet Lighthouse and Museum. 500 Captain Armour’s Way, Jupiter

Cost: Limited tickets: $75 per person

Contact:  Call 561-747-8380 x101 for tickets.

Note:  All tickets are non-refundable. Each ticket will include a copy of the 2017 Lighthouse Photography Calendar being launched at the event.

The Mystery of Love and Sex: If the title’s not enough to make you see this show, we don’t know what is.

Bring your own, well, anything to the Stuart & Shelby Theater at Arts Garage this month where you will laugh at scenes from The Mystery of Love and Sex, a romantic comedy about sexual and emotional protocol according to two couples.

By BYOA, they really do mean, ANYTHING: you own alcohol, food, cutlery, cups, the whole nine.

The play is inviting to the young and old with characters like Charlotte, a Jewish college student who falls in love with her childhood best friend, Johnny, a black man. And Charlotte’s traditional parents, who scramble to keep up as their daughter’s sexual desires begin to complicate their own relationship.

We haven’t seen the show yet but have a feeling it’ll be compelling to watch an interracial couple open up about their sex lives to a parochial set of parents who realize they may need to revisit the fundamentals of their own relationship and sex life.

In fact, the New York Times called it “a perfectly wonderful new play…a tender and funny exploration of the lives of two couples from two generations….like a chart depicting the sexual and emotional anatomy of us all.”

General admission tickets will cost you $30, but you can save $5 on a preview showing on Wednesday, Oct. 12 at 7:30 p.m. If you decide to bring your own booze, wine or food, you can purchase reserved or premium table seating for $40 or $45. (Don’t forget cutlery!) 

Get tickets and list of show times here. 


The Deets:

What: The Mystery of Love and Sex

When: Opening night is October 13th and runs through October 30th.

Where: The Stuart and Shelby Theater at Arts Garage, Delray Beach

Cost: $30 for general admission

One, Two, Drink up! Don’t miss the Hilton’s Oktoberfest Sunday

We may not be crunching leaves or catching a chill in South Florida, but fall is here and that means the pumpkin picking, football watching and school shopping is in full effect. It means we can also look forward to Oktoberfest, which happens all over the world during this time, every year.

On Sunday, October 16th, you can enjoy an evening of beer tasting, dining, lawn games and live music at the Hilton in West Palm Beach.

The 42nd Annual American-German Club Oktoberfest in Lake Worth, Florida on October 10, 2015. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post)
The 42nd Annual American-German Club Oktoberfest in Lake Worth, Florida on October 10, 2015. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post)

Yes, there will be lots of beer, but it’s still a family-friendly event and everyone gets free access. However, if you want to celebrate Oktoberfest in true style, you can register and pay $30 for unlimited beer tasting from Funky Buddha, Due South, Twisted Trunk and Inlet Brewery. 

As for food, you can look forward to a variety of bratwurst served with grilled peppers and onions on a hoagie bun. And of course there will be potato salad and creamy sauerkraut. The kids will love Munich’s giant pretzel — just hold the beer cheese and beer mustard for yourself.

(Bill Ingram/Palm Beach Post): Boynton Beach: Due South Brewing Company sampler Tuesday in Boynton Beach.
Due South Brewing Company sampler Tuesday in Boynton Beach. (Bill Ingram/Palm Beach Post)

The Deets:Oktoberfest at The Hilton West Palm Beach

What: Oktoberfest

When: October 16, 2016 from 3:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.

Where: Hilton West Palm Beach, 600 Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach

Cost: FREE and $30 if you want unlimited beer tastings

 

Car enthusiasts, this beach was made for your ride.

Vroom, vroom! Get ready to hear and see a variety of muscle machines at the Horsepower at the Beach car show on Thursday, Oct. 13 at the Lake Worth Casino Building and Beach Complex in Lake Worth.

You can either check out the exhibition for free or register your vehicle for a chance to win some awards. This is an opportunity to admire some of the coolest rides in town, check out the engines, the upgrades and take a peek at their stylish interiors.

photo car show
(Richard Graulich / The Palm Beach Post)

If you think your car has what it takes to win, you can pay $15 to be included in the lineup and receive up-front, VIP beachfront parking. To register, contact lbennett@lakeworth.org or 561-533-7395.

Otherwise, just come out, enjoy the show, eat some food and listen to great music outside.

What: Horsepower at the Beach car show

When: Thursday, Oct. 13. 6 to 9 p.m.

Where: Lake Worth Casino building and Beach complex in Lake Worth, FL.

Why did Trump insist artist repaint his hand in Mar-A-Lago portrait?

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It’s become practically a mystery story: The Case of The Donald’s Repainted Hand.

But the only person who knows the true story is the man who painted — and at Donald Trump‘s insistence, repainted — the Republican presidential candidate’s hand on his Mar-A-Lago portrait, the artist himself, Ralph Wolfe Cowan.

The West Palm Beach painter tells us the full story — and clears up what he says are discrepancies in the accounting of it — as well as talking about his long career painting romantic portraits of kings, movie stars and moguls, everybody from Elvis to Princess Grace to Michael Jackson.

It’s a story you must read:

THE LAST OF THE PORTRAIT PAINTERS: THE RALPH WOLFE COWAN STORY