Hilton Rialto to host Boomer Bash & Senior Expo


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Do you remember The “Rat Pack”?

The “Rat Pack” was an informal group of entertainers centered on the Las Vegas casino scene. It originated with a group of friends that met at the Los Angeles home of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall.

In the 1960s, the group featured Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford and Joey Bishop. They appeared together on stage and in films in the early 1960s, including the movies “Ocean’s 11,” Sergeants 3” and “Robin and the 7 Hoods.” Sinatra, Martin and Davis were regarded as the group’s lead members after Bogart’s death.

The music of the “Rat Pack” will come to life again at Bluewater Creative Group’s Boomer Bash & Senior Expo. The free expo, which has a theme of “Fly Me to the Boom,” will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 8 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place Conference Center at 200 Rialto Place in Melbourne.

Entertainment will be provided by disc jockey Michael Van Ness. Van Ness, who many consider to be Brevard County’s hardest-working man in show business, will play music from the “Rat Pack” era, including songs by Sinatra, Martin, Davis Jr. and many more.

Besides his disc jockey work, Van Ness, who resides in Rockledge, is an emcee, magician, comedian, photographer and balloon artist. For more information about Van Ness, go to his website at michaelvanness.com

Jill Blue, publisher and CEO of Bluewater Creative Group that produces Senior Life of Florida, the Viera Voice and the Boomer Guide, said she’s excited about this year’s event.

“We’ve never had it at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto,” she said. “We have the entire ballroom and the break-out rooms. In the break-out rooms, we are going to offer educational seminars on various topics.

“It’s our signature event,” she continued. “We look forward to seeing all our readers. It’s nice to see people come back every year.”

In addition to the entertainment, Timothy Gagnon, an artist and a subcontractor to design NASA missions and commemorative patches, will be the featured special guest.

Gagnon is a self-taught artist and designer, working in both traditional media as well as in digital. He will bring his display of NASA mission and commemorative patches to the event.

Blue said the “Fly Me to the Boom” theme was in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 and other space-related events.

“We never really had music from the ‘Rat Pack’ era,” she said. “We expect people to dance, sing along and have a good time. We also encourage people to come dressed from the 1950s and early 1960s.”

There also will be a chance to win a grand prize at the Senior Life booth.

The expo will offer a variety of informative exhibits and booths, including health, medical screening, volunteering, elder law, finance, wellness, travel retirement options, caregiver news, insurance, 55-plus living communities, photo booth, flu shots, food tasting and veteran resources.

For more information about the Boomer Bash & Senior Expo, call 321-242-1235, email Senior Life at media@bluewatercreativegroup.com  or go to boomerseniorexpo.com.