The after-hours scene in Fort Myers  is both limited and somewhat uninspired. There are plenty of sports pubs and anonymous dive bars, but other choices are pretty slim.
Brick Bar (2224 Bay St., 239/332-7425) is in the compact downtown area and features DJs and live music in a historic exposed-brick building; upstairs is the rooftop Sky Bar, where DJs spin “South Beach style.” The dance floor and DJ-driven trance music at EnVie Lounge (2213 Main St., 239/337-0909) seems like little more than a backdrop for popped-collar patrons to indulge in VIP-room bottle service.
Ricochet (3853 Cleveland Ave., 239/277-5700), on the other hand, is famous for its “Coin Night” on Tuesdays, when any coin gets you any drink; live music varies from country to rap to metal, with a smattering of nationally known groups.
There are dozens of places to grab a drink in Fort Myers Beach , and pretty much all of them are of the beach-bar-and-grill variety. The top-floor lounge at the Lani Kai Island Resort (1400 Estero Blvd., 239/463-3111) is among them, but if you can beat (or outlast) the dinner crowd, you can grab one of the gliding table-bench combos to sip on a cold one while watching the sunset from one of the best and highest vantage points on Fort Myers Beach.
Downstairs at the same hotel is a beach bar that stays pretty busy throughout the day—open containers are only allowed on the beach if you are right at the place that served them—and it picks up at night with DJs and occasional cover bands.
Like the rest of Southwest Florida, Fort Myers ’s arts scene gets a little boost in the winter, and it’s then that most local performing groups ramp up their schedules. The Southwest Florida Symphony and Gulf Coast Symphony both stage concerts at the Barbara Mann Performing Arts Hall (8099 College Pkwy., 239/481-4849), which also hosts a slate of touring Broadway musicals and pop concerts.
Musical theater is also the main attraction at the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre (1380 Colonial Blvd., 239/278-4422), which hosts touring versions of shows like All Shook Up and Guys and Dolls.
There are a handful of interesting galleries in Fort Meyers, the most notable being the Arts for ACT Gallery (2265 1st St., 239/337-5050). Owned and operated by Abuse Counseling and Treatment Inc., a nonprofit group that assists victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, the gallery is in a beautifully repurposed space, with small sub-areas that each have a unique focus. It’s a modern and funky gallery with a serious mission, and the art ranges from surrealism to sculpture.
Sponsored by a local Kiwanis club, the annual Medieval Faire (Jan.) brings jugglers, jousting, turkey legs, and a human-sized chess match to the Lakes Regional Park every winter.
The city of Fort Myers  honors its most famous part-time resident with the Edison Festival of Light (Feb.), a monthlong celebration that includes weekends with live music, craft shows, a parade, and even a bed race.
For more than 50 years, the Fort Myers Beach Shrimp Festival (Mar.) has been an institution in the area. The festival is a weekend-long event, with a huge food-and-crafts vendors area on the beach, shrimp dinners, and the crowning of the Shrimp Festival Queen.