Polo Anyone? A Quick Guide To The World-Class Sport

poloThe Miami Beach Polo World Cup is an annual event that draws players and spectators from around the world. Each year, more than 10,000 fans and competitors come from South America, Russia, Switzerland, Malaysia and other countries to be in and be seen at the world-class event. Done Miami-style, complete with fund-raising events, exclusive parties and fashion shows, tickets run up to $450 for a VIP pass. But unlike many other south Florida events, this one also has free general admission, enabling just about anybody to experience the Miami social scene.

Still, like experiencing other events while traveling, knowing a little of what polo is all about is not a bad idea.

Beach Polo is a team sport, played on horseback where winning means scoring more points (goals) than the other team. Goals are scored by driving the brightly colored, inflatable ball between goalposts. Each game has four, seven-minute periods called chukkers. Each team has three players and they change horses (polo ponies actually) after each chukker. Two umpires watch for fouls granting free hits. Fouls occur mainly when one player crosses another player who is following the ball on its exact line of trajectory.
While polo dates back 2,500 years, Beach Polo is a Dubai-created event that started in 2004, with the Miami Beach event beginning in 2005.

Actually two events, the Women’s Polo Cup takes place on Thursday, April 25, featuring eight women’s teams in a one-day series of round-robin championship matches.

The three-day men’s tournament runs Friday April 27 through Sunday April 29 with six teams that include some of the world’s top-ranked players. Sponsored by Argentinean sports and leisure clothing manufacturer La Martina, this year’s tournament will feature Miami’s DJ Irie, whose Irie Foundation will be an official beneficiary non-profit organization alongside Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami.

Beach polo is a lot like arena polo, but other forms include cowboy polo, elephant polo, camel polo, cycle polo, canoe polo and kayak polo as we see in this video:

[Photo credit – The Polo Life]

Super Mario flashmob takes over the Chicago, Illinois, Magnificent Mile

On Wednesday, more than 90 costumed Super Marios took over the streets of the Chicago, Illinois, Magnificent Mile. Around lunchtime, the flash mob broke out into dance in front of the John Hanock Center in an effort to promote Ninetendo’s new video game, Super Mario 3D Land.

As you can see in the video, one man really enjoyed Nintendo’s marketing efforts (although he had some trouble getting the moves down). The mobsters in the video are part of “Attack!”, a company that organizes promotional flash mobs around the country.

Check it out for yourself:

View more videos at: http://nbcchicago.com.

Celebrate fall with Cider Week in New York

apple cider festival in new york What better way to celebrate the changing of the seasons than with a week full of cider-related events. From October 16-October 24, 2011, New York will host it’s first ever Cider Week, which will include tastings, demonstrations, pairings, classes and more. Here are some of the events to check out (for the full schedule, click here):

October 16– A Cider Revival, 11AM-4PM
New Amsterdam Market

This celebration of hard cider will include cider tastings paired with tapas, sampling of both common and rare varieties of apples, cider purchasing opportunities, and the chance to buy delicious apple pies and desserts. Admission into the market is free, although you will have to purchase a ticket if you want to do the tastings.October 17– Mele and Maiale in the Meatpacking, 6PM-8PM

The event will include cider and porchetta tasting, with special guest Ezra Sherman from Eve’s Cidery. The cost is $10 and reservations should be made in advance to secure a spot. If interested in attending, click here.

October 18– Meet the Cider Maker: Original Sin, 6:30PM-9PM
Good Beer

Want to learn more about cider as well as sample new varieties? Come to this event to speak with Gidon Coll from Original Sin Cider, learn the history of Newtown Pippin apple, and taste some new Heirloom ciders. Price is $10.

October 19– Prix Fixe Dinner Menu with Cider Pairings, 7PM-10PM
Jimmy’s No.43

Enjoy a 3-course meal, each paired with a different cider. There will also be live music in the back room from 8:30PM-11PM. The menu includes:

  • A caramelized apple, walnut, and blue cheese salad paired with Dupont “Cidre Bouche Brut” sparkling cider
  • 24-hour pork braised in cider vinegar and molasses, with roasted parsnips paired with Dupont “Triple” sparkling wine cider
  • Apple cobbler paired with Dupont “Pommeau”

There will also be rare French cider products from New York, Vermont, New Hamshire and France being served all night long. The cost of the event is $45 per person.

October 20– A Cider and Cheese Tour of the Northeast, 6:30PM
Brooklyn Kitchen

Enjoy a guided tasting of regional hard and ice ciders, each paired with artisanal cheeses. Expect at least 5 pairings, as well as science, recipes, and history. The cost for the event is $50.

October 21– Cider Pairing and Cooking Demonstration, 11AM-1PM
Union Square Greenmarket

Learn how to cook with hard cider as well as how to cook dishes that pair well with the drink. This is a free event.

October 22– Tasting of Basque Ciders, 4PM-7PM
Tinto Vino

Sample ciders from North Spain as well as the moutainous region of Asturias. This is a free event.

October 23– Cider Pairing Dinner, 7PM
The Queens Kickshaw

While the specifics for this event are still being determined, attendees can expect delicious cuisine paired with unique ciders. There will be a special guest, as well. The price of this event has not yet been announced.

October 24– Cider Party, 6PM-8:15PM

This closing event will celebrate the winners of the Glywood’s Harvest Awards as they talk about their success supporting local food efforts in their community. A reception with appetizers and Hudson Valley ciders will follow. While this is a free event, RSVP is required.