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Best Ways To Bring Middle Earth To South Florida

J.R.R. Tolkien's landmark literary masterpiece trilogy "The Lord of the Rings" stands as one of the greatest works of imagination and scale of all time. Made into film by award-winning director Peter Jackson, it brought to life a rich fantasy world struggling with the everlasting fight of the forces of good versus evil. Now on December 14, Jackson will release his film version of the book that started it all, "The Hobbit." In Miami, there are sure to be hobbits, orcs, wizards, multi-headed monsters, elves and dwarves aplenty. Here are just a few of the ways to get your Middle Earth fix in the area.

Clyde Butcher
Clyde Butcher, Via Escencia 3, 2002.

Denny's Restaurants
Various locations

Don't look now but 'America's diner' has gone to Middle Earth in a hand cart. This is because the nationwide restaurant chain has partnered with Warner Brothers Entertainment to transform Denny's into 'Middle Earth's Diner' by offering unique "The Hobbit"-themed menu items that run the gamut from appetizers to desserts. Forget the 'Grand Slam Breakfast' and build your own hearty 'Hobbit Slam.' If you're into burgers, then the mountainous 'Ring Burger' will fortify the hungriest of orcs for battle on the open plain. And who can resist 'Gandalf's Gobble Melt,' 'Frodo's Pot Roast Skillet' or 'Dwarves Turkey and Dressing Dinner'? When you're finished gorging like famished hobbits on the windswept plain, Denny's also has loads of interactive trivia games, recipe links, movie trailers and even interactive character dress-ups posted on social networking sites as well as a series of 12 limited-edition trading cards.

Clyde Butcher
Clyde Butcher, Via Escencia 3, 2002.

Motion Picture Release, December 14, 2012
Various theaters

There is no better way to celebrate the opening of the film that introduced the timeless characters of Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf the Wizard, Gollum and the evil Lord Saruman than going to see it on premiere night decked out in your finest Middle Earth attire. Like the "Star Wars" films, loyal fans of all things Middle Earth will likely dress up as their favorite characters and even reenact mini scenes in the lobby or in the theater before the show.

Related: Best Independent Movie Theaters In Miami

Clyde Butcher
Clyde Butcher, Via Escencia 3, 2002.

Museum of Discovery and Science
401 S.W. 2nd St.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33312
(954) 467-6637

Located in the heart of Ft. Lauderdale's business and art district, the museum is planning a series of activities and events designed to fire up the imagination and whet the public appetite for the motion picture release weekend. A variety of adventures and activities will abound, all capped off with the opportunity to step right into the IMAX theater and enjoy Bilbo's adventure with wizards and dwarves in 3D.

Clyde Butcher
Clyde Butcher, Via Escencia 3, 2002.

Lego Store
Aventura Mall
19501 Biscayne Blvd.
Miami, FL 33180
(305) 792-7395

Though currently no in-store 'brick-builds' are planned where you can build your own action figure with other store guests and take it home, Lego does plan to carry a new "The Hobbit"-themed construction block set to augment its current offering of "The Lord of the Rings" building sets. Stop in after you read the book or see the motion picture and bring Middle Earth home to your bedroom or family room by building it yourself in the comfort of your own home.

Clyde Butcher
Clyde Butcher, Via Escencia 3, 2002.

Crazy For Costumes
1343 S.W. 8th St.
Miami, FL 33135
(305) 858-5029

Except for the movie release of "The Hobbit" on December 14, there are precious few ways for Middle Earth to come to South Florida. But that doesn't mean you have to settle for rereading the entire J.R.R. Tolkien literary catalog or diligently scrutinizing every frame of the "The Lord Of The Rings" motion picture trilogy. All you need to do to bring Middle Earth to the forefront of people's minds is to visit this costume store in Little Havana. You name the character and this place has a costume for it. Whether Gandalf the wizard, Legolas the archer, Aragon the future king or Gimli the ax-wielding dwarf, you can find the perfect outfit.

Related: Best Costume Shops In South Florida

Glenn Osrin is a journalist and seasoned consumer products sales professional living in Miami, Florida. A new vegan, his most recent assignment is writing about the benefits of a plant-based diet and lifestyle while learning about the Miami vegan community. His work can be found at

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