By Jay Forte, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Tonight, Thursday, June 9th, The Rio Times is hosting their “TALKS” speaker event, bringing together a panel of experts in three areas regarding the Rio 2016 Olympics; organization, tourism and immigration issues (visas). Helping make the event possible, are the sponsors, Fine Wines, Rekorderlig Cider, as well as some light snacks provided by Blue Agave, Mexican bar and restaurant, and La Rica, a Jamaican food and culture collective.
Fine Wines was launched by Swedish expatriate Tony Kemenesi who has been living in Rio for six years now. With their generous support the event is able to offer some high-quality wine options ‘at cost’ (R$10 per glass), making for a nice change from most restaurant options in the area.
Something new from Fine Wines is their wine club, where customers can now sign up for a monthly delivery of either 2, 4 or 6 bottles, hand-picked by their sommeliers to bring you the best options at the best value, without scratching one’s head at the wine shop.
Rekorderlig Cider has also provided the event with support, and their representative in Brazil, English-expatriate Russell Browne, explains why. “The TALKS are a good opportunity to let people know about Rekorderlig Cider as a recent arrival here in Brazil.”
He explains, “Rekorderlig Cider has been selling in Brazil only since the end of March 2016. Currently we are selling in only four States: RS, PR, ES and RJ but we hope to find distributers in every State of Brazil in the coming months.” Excited to get the word out for the Olympics, “Rekorderlig is an international brand selling six million cases in all corners of the world. Visitors for the Games will already know Rekorderlig and be looking to drink it.”
Providing light nibbles for the event is La Rica, a Jamaican food and culture collective. Their team shared, “TALKS will be a preview of the upcoming exchange and celebration that La Rica looks forward to in commemorating the Games. During the event the participants of TALKS can experiment a portion of Sweet Potato Chips, a Jamaican snack with its principal ingredient being a root that links the cultures of Brazil and Jamaica through their indigenous peoples.”
Last but not least is the Blue Agave Mexican bar and restaurants which are owned and managed by American expatriates, with two locations, the original in Ipanema and their second in Copacabana. They are providing some tortilla chips and salsa and maybe some other surprises yet to be announced.
Stone Korshak, editor and publisher of The Rio Times shares, “We are extremely thankful to all our sponsors for helping support this installment of the TALKS speaker series, without them we couldn’t hold the event. It’s also testament to the community of international expatriates here to provide a multicultural mix of refreshments – it all goes with the theme of the Olympics well.”
The three speakers for the TALKS event tonight are Phil Wilkinson from Rio 2016, Roshni Thakker from XperienceRio and Michael Royster, an American who has a Brazilian lawyer since 1992. Also Brazil 101: Comedy for Gringos has helped bring Fernando Caruso, a famous Brazilian comedian and actor, to be the host and emcee.
Another new edition to the evening, Mary Byker, has signed on as DJ for this event. Byker, of the 80s English punk-rock band Gaye Bykers on Acid, and later the band Pop Will Eat Itself, has lived in Rio since 2007 and is a frequent DJ at venues around the city. Not shy of speaking out, he comments, “I’m all set, just to say, I’m excited about the actual Games but, I’m not sure at what cost to a country that probably can’t afford to stage an event of this magnitude.”
Organizers of the TALKS series encourage everyone to have their say at the event tonight, and bend Bykers ear on the subject. Entrance to this event will be limited to fifty places, and a guaranteed seat requires pre-purchasing a ticket for R$50 online. If seating is still available on the night of the event, entrance will be R$80 (cash only).
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