Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Fiddler's Green was a great spot for Geof Benge's Birthday Celebration.

Geoff Benge celebrated his birthday with family and friends at Fiddler's Green (544 W Fairbanks Ave, Winter Park, FL). Geoff and his wife Janet, both from New Zealand,  are co-authors of 68 biographies of famous historical figures, with over 3 million copies sold worldwide. Their latest book, Triumph- the Extraordinary Life of Louis Zamparini, is timed perfectly to engage young readers prior to the Christmas Day release of Unbroken, a movie of his life directed by Angelina Jolie.

Before the party, I sketched the regular patrons at the bar. The heated discussion was all about soccer. Once Geoff and Janet arrived, I joined them in the back room. Guinness flowed and conversations turned to literature.  Friends got up to toast Geoff. He is apparently known for being able to hold his liquor. On a trip with friends he had a liquor bottle. The group went on an exhausting hike and Geoff kept sipping from his bottle to every one's amazement. He not only kept up with all the other hikers, but he was sure footed the whole way. It wasn't until later, around the camp fire that everyone learned that his bottle was actually full of water.

The only time I drink Guinness is when there is chocolate cake to go with it. The sweet chocolate is fantastic to wash down with the thick dark beer. I was in bliss.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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