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Phone: 305-669-7355

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NOVEMBER 23 - 29, 2010

Turnpike Extension going cashless by mid-February

BY RICHARD YAGER

M

otorists using any part of Florida’s Turnpike Extension will need SunPass automated toll deductions by mid-February or be subject to monthly “Toll-By-Plate” billings. Conversions to Open Road Tolling (ORT) have been underway this year at the three major Kendall interchanges — SW 120th Street, Kendall Drive (SW 88th Street) and Bird Road (SW 40th Street). SunPass-only accesses already are in place at NW 74th Street and NW 106th Street interchanges. The prepaid tolling devices will replace all manned tollbooths along the entire length of the 47-mile route from Florida City (Milepost 0) to Miramar (Milepost 47) by the third or fourth week of February 2011, according to Sonyha Rodriguez-Miller, spokesperson for the Turnpike Operations Center based in Fort Lauderdale. “Once remaining toll plaza conversions over the 47-mile Turnpike Extension are completed, the conversion from cash to ORT will only take 24 to 48 hours,” she added. “At that time, the extension will become the first South Florida section to require ORT SunPass tolling over its entire distance.” The next turnpike conversion is planned from the Golden Glades interchange in North Miami-Dade to I-595 in Broward County, currently scheduled to begin toll plaza conversions in late 2011 or 2012 with completion by 2014. Appearing before the Nov. 8 meeting of Kendall Federation of Homeowner Associations, Rodriguez-Miller explained the need to enlist in the SunPass program. She detailed the advantages of the new $25 SunPass portable unit attached by suction cups to the inside of the car windshield, allowing use on another vehicle. Most Sunpass holders use the permanently mounted “SunPass Mini” that sells for $4.99, registered as a credit against future tolls. Portables and minis are available at several major retail outlets, including Publix, CVS Pharmacy, Navarro, Sedano’s, as well as Turnpike gas stations and gift shops.

––––––––––––––––––––– See

TURNPIKE, page 4

Dice House ‘second home’ for activist Holly White

M-DCPS earns $10 million teacher incentive grant BY JOHN SCHUSTER

M

Holly White, Kendall community leader, is pictured with plaque at historic Dice House ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

BY RICHARD YAGER

T

he Dice House just seems to be the right fit for one of the community’s busiest people. “It’s beginning to feel like a second home,” laughs Holly White, president of two homeowner associations that cover most of East Kendall residents living in planned communities. Whether rallying “the troops” for a zoning cause or planning a Christmas party for Continental Park kids, you are bound to find this retired Miami Springs teacher chairing a meeting or helping host a social at the area’s oldest restored

residence, once the home of its first mayor and now a Continental Park activity shelter. An East Kendall resident for 36 years, White began her “growing up years” on Key Biscayne during the 1950s when the Mackles first developed the “Island Paradise,” then later moved to a Continental Park home just in back of the Kenwood Elementary School, where she raised her three daughters. She easily recalls sending Jennifer, now 44; Cynthia, 42, and Suzanna, 41,

–––––––––––––––––––––– See

WHITE, page 4

iami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) is among 62 applicants from 27 states to win the U.S. Department of Education’s Teacher Incentive Fund (TIF) grant competition. The USDOE is providing the first two years of funding — a total of $422 million — of a five-year $1.2 billion program that seeks to strengthen the education profession by rewarding excellence, and attracting teachers and principals to high-need and hard-to-staff areas. M-DCPS’ award for the five-year program is $10 million. The grant will be used to develop and implement a performance-based compensation system — CORE Initiative: Creating Opportunities to Reward Educators — in eight high-need elementary schools serving grades K-5. It will enable the schools to recruit, reward, and retain highly effective teachers and administrators who are needed to engage and teach their students to succeed despite the many challenges they face. The project will serve as a catalyst for change in these schools, supporting a culture of continuous improvement that will lead to increased teacher effectiveness and student achievement. This year’s winning applicants were selected by a group of 60 independent, expert peer reviewers. They were judged on their comprehensive plans to develop, reward, and support effective teachers and principals in high-need schools, based on evaluations that include multiple measures, including student growth. A list of TIF winners can be found online at: <www2.ed.gov/programs/teacherincentive/a wards.html>. Note that award amounts listed for each winner are over a five-year period. For information, contact Iraida MendezCartaya, assistant superintendent, Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, Grants Administration, and Community Engagement, at 305-995-1497.


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November 23 - 29, 2010


November 23 - 29, 2010

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It’s a Mann’s World for twins headed for musical stardom BY YELANY RODRIGUEZ

Lauren and Alexandra Mann, 17-year-old twin sisters, are taking the South Florida music scene by storm. Lauren, a singer/ songwriter and skilled piano player, and Alexandra, singer /songwriter, guitarist and harmonica player to boot, write Americana pop with musical influences of Fleetwood Mac, Lady Antebellum, Neil Young and Ryan Adams. During the past summer, the duo spent time in Nashville meeting and performing for managers, producers, publishers and fellow On their album cover, Alexandra Mann (left, holding guitar) is pictured with songwriters, and stating twin sister Lauren Mann. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– the experience was a while still being involved in community “summer course in music industry.” The Mann Sisters were featured on radio service by performing for the Veterans WLRN’s Michael Stock “Folk and Hospital, Homeless Service Communities Acoustic Show,” Sept. 5, performing orig- and other local charities. Admirers can catch the pair playing inal music live on air and discussing their music careers, college plans and future weekly evening dates at different times at four local spots: JohnMartin’s on Miracle performances. If the sisters weren’t impressive enough, Mile, Coral Gables, Sunday; Titanic they have recently been named winners of Brewery, Tuesday; Elks Club, Thursday, the “SoFlow Music Video Contest,” and Luna Star Café, Saturday. Their single, Breathe Slow, currently is receiving $25,000. As National Honor Society and Student available internationally on iTunes, Government members at Palmer Trinity Amazon MP3, Napster, etc. For more School, Lauren and Alexandra don’t let information visit the sisters’ website at their newly found fame affect schoolwork, <www.laurenandalexandra.com>.

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November 23 - 29, 2010

TURNPIKE, from page 1 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Motorists without SunPass using the Extension after conversion will be charged for Turnpike miles by “Toll-By-Plate,” the system in which cameras located on overhead gantries photograph each vehicle license plate and bill its holder for both the toll and a $2.50 administrative charge on a monthly basis. Currently, most car rental companies allow customers to use SunPass lanes by charging a $2 service fee plus any tolls due, charged back to the credit card account for

the car rental, said Rodriguez-Miller, advising all motorists to check on any ORT arrangements at time of rental. She also noted the new Web link (www.fl511.com) as a continuing source of information for Florida motorists needing updates on the state’s roadway system and travel conditions. For Turnpike information, log on to <www.FloridasTurnpike.com>; SunPass at <www.SunPass.com>, or call 1-800-7497453.

WHITE, from page 1 ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– off to school in one of southwest Dade’s oldest elementary schools, which celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2003. “Actually, when it was proposed that Kenwood Elementary expand, I became active for the first time in neighborhood issues,” explained White, first elected 11 years ago as president of the Continental Park Homeowners Association, serving about 800 residents. She also serves as president of the East Kendall Homeowner Organization (EKHO) representing dozens of HOAs east of SW 117th Avenue that account for literally thousands of home and condominium owners between US 1 and SW 117th Avenue. While she’s practically a lifelong Floridian, White is Texas-born “native” of Borger, located in the Lone Star state’s Panhandle. “Most folks come to Florida from north to south,” she chuckled. “We came west to east because like so many, my dad worked in shipyards during World War II, and my parents moved where the ships were being built. “On route by car from the West Coast to Florida, my folks stopped in Texas for birth of their oldest daughter — me. Never returned there and have remained in Florida to this day. “Actually, we first lived in an apartment off SW Eighth Street that, historically, had a shady reputation — a house that’s still there. “Our family moved to the Key when it was barely developed, moved into a new Mackle home on Woodcrest, three bedrooms and one bath, no air conditioning. We walked to Cape Florida Lighthouse, seeing no one. We even lit bonfires on the beach in those days, and took our dogs with us, too.” After moving to the mainland, she attended Coral Gables High School. Today, the historic Dice House is her “favorite place — a jewel in our midst,” she exclaimed. “Many areas of the county are not so fortunate to have a place like it.” In its heyday nearly a century ago, the old home no doubt crackled with similar political overtones as residence of Kendall’s first mayor, David Brantley Dice, owner-opera-

tor of a “Kendall Feed and Supply” store that adjoined the pinewood home, near the old Florida East Coast railroad tracks only a block from US 1 at SW 98th Street. Today, White spearheads protests that vary from downsizing planned mid-rise or high-rise expansions of condominiums planned in East Kendall as well as forays by Florida Power and Light Company to erect a new transmission line on 110-foot high concrete pillars along SW 77th Avenue neighborhood streets. “We really like to work with developers and the county to resolve differences,” White maintains. “But things often go too far, like the fight to keep low-rise condos from becoming midrise buildings next to the Palmetto [Expressway], or putting a supermarket into Greenery Mall that would so impact traffic, security and residential homes.” Now retired from school teaching for two years, White has twin goals in her efforts to protect overdevelopment of East Kendall’s residential areas: “Some changes need to be made on SW 77th Avenue,” she stated. “There’s zoning in place that I feel needs to be permanently changed to scale down any further mid-rise type of development,” as sought by a recent zoning application for an eight-story residence. “As for FPL putting those 60-foot poles on residential streets, I think the executives ought to be ashamed to keeping asking us for alternative ideas — after all, they’re the power company. Who are we to come up with solutions for them?” she demanded. Newsletters and announcements went out on White’s East Kendall network in midOctober to warn about a deadline imposed for solutions by Jan. 15. According to a Pinecrest Council member, two communities already have hired consultants to work out alternative proposals, an action made necessary (she heatedly declared) “because FPL isn’t doing the job on behalf of its own interests by making its own profit source — its customers — pay for solutions to their problems, in addition to a monthly electricity bill,” she charged.


November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

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November 23 - 29, 2010

Miami-Dade Commissioner Gimenez on the right track R. Kenneth Bluh KENNETH’S COMMENTARY Auto billionaire Norman Braman’s mayoral recall petition drive has sparked a revised interest in updating the Miami-Dade County charter. Carlos Gimenez, one of our county’s elected commissioners who is anticipating a run for the mayor’s seat come the next election, went before a subcommittee of the county commission and made a formal presentation of two proposed charter amendments. His proposals — suggested by many including the Miami Herald, Miami Today, TV political commentators and yours truly — carried additional weight because Gimenez comes with a great deal of experience developed as an elected official and when he was the Miami city manager. He understands the arithmetic of running a local government. Braman’s recall petition of the mayor has spawned another recall petition drive, this one for all the sitting members of the county commission who so unwisely approved the

county’s new budget. Due to the lack of realistic cuts in expenditures, property owners are, at one of worst times in their lives, being required to pay higher real estate taxes. It is quite obvious that our elected officials long ago forgot why we elected them to their current positions. Not withstanding all the recall petition drives underway, the real problem is not our elected officials who can be removed at the next election, but the need to revise the county charter. Miami-Dade County’s charter, much like the state’s constitution, establishes the rules by which our county is governed. Commissioner Gimenez presented two very basic charter changes to the commission subcommittee which first reviewed, and then lacking support by a majority vote of the members, did not pass them on to the full commission for consideration. Gimenez proposed first simplifying the process for citizen initiatives and second permitting voter choice on term limits. The commissioner believes that the questions could be put before the voters when and if the petition drive for the removal of the mayor is successful and would go before the public for a vote. It would save time and money for the county. The commissioner believes that this is not the appropriate time to ask the residents of Miami-Dade to pay for increased commission-

er salaries. I disagree on this point. I am certain that if term limits were enacted, the taxpayers of Miami-Dade would be happy to increase commission salaries. Without exception, everyone I talk to believes that $6,000 a year plus perks is ridiculously low and should be increased, especially if commissioner were forbidden from seeking outside employment. I feel that the community is ready for a petition drive to update, no rewrite, the county charter. Here is what I would recommend: 1. County commissioner is limited to two full terms; 2. Sitting commissioners can run for one more full term; 3. Commissioner salaries conform to the state formula at approximately $90,000; 4. Commissioners cannot hold a position outside of county government; 5. Commissioners are required to excuse themselves when an item comes before the commission if they have any affiliation with the items under consideration; 6. All petition drives such as for recall of an elected official or placement of a charter amendment on the ballot, subscribe to the same set of rules as to procedures, percentage of signature requirements and time to gather signatures; 7. The elimination of the position of county manager and the election of a vice mayor

VIEWPOINT to handle the administrative responsibilities of the mayor; 8. Reduce the size of the commission from 13 to 8 with 3 of the 8 being elected county wide; 9. The recommendations of the every 10year charter review commission go directly to the voters of Miami-Dade not having to be pre-approved by the commission; 10. Voter participation be permitted at all meetings of the commission and subcommittees, and 11. Clearly define elected official responsibilities: Commissioners make the rules; the mayor administers. This is a good start. We appreciate your opinions on this column whether in agreement or disagreement. Please send your comments to (fax number) 305-662-6980 or email to <letters@communitynewspapers.com>. The opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of this newspaper, its editors or publisher.


November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

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The Wall Street rally: What took so long? Al Sunshine CBS MONEY WATCH Sweeping changes are reshaping American politics, but Wall Street basically shrugged it all off when trading opened the morning after Election Day. Economics drove the election as angry voters let local and national candidates know they dissatisfied with high unemployment, foreclosures and the economic policies that led up to it all. Investors apparently factored it all in when they started the day’s trading, so the election results were not a surprise. The markets actually saw some moderate losses through noon, but by mid-afternoon, the markets started climbing. When trading ended on Nov. 3, the Dow hit a new closing high for the year. In fact, it closed at its highest level since September 2008. What caused the renewed investor confidence that pushed the markets into a new post-election rally? Was it the shift in political power in Washington? Was it relief that a very nasty and divisive election was finally over? The answer is “no” to all of the above. Some analysts say it was mainly the latest action out of the Federal Reserve, our Washington “Money Geeks” who decide U.S. monetary policy. Their November adjustment decided to keep interest rates near all-time low levels, but they also decided to buy $600 billion dollars worth of Treasury Securities, and investors obviously liked the plan. Shortly after the announcement, Wall Street started seeing investors jump back in with enough cash to boost the markets well over its 11,205 yearly high set back in April. Why did the markets get a boost from buying Treasuries? In the simplest terms, the Federal Reserve is “injecting” another $600 billion dollars into the U.S. economy. It is aimed at encouraging banks to lend, encouraging businesses to expand, and

encouraging new hiring. It will further devalue the U.S. dollar on foreign markets and that’s already boosting wholesale oil prices. So we can expect to see local gas prices rising over the coming weeks. The commodities markets should see a lot more activity now too. Critics will argue that it is deepening the deficit and further eroding our economic future. Perhaps, but for now, it may also boost the economic recovery through the first half of 2011, which already is forecast to see continued slow growth. This leads to several interesting questions: 1. Why did it take so long for the Fed to take stronger action to get the recovery moving again? 2. Why are critics so angry about the course of the overall economy when there are so many signs of improvements since the end of the summer? 3. Why isn’t more political pressure being put on the nation’s banks to modify more residential mortgages to keep people in their homes? 4. Why isn’t more political pressure being put on the financial sector to ease credit for small businesses struggling to expand as the economy improves? 5. Why isn’t more being done to “grow jobs” and encourage U.S. businesses to hire U.S. workers? Closer to home, here is one very difficult fact that can’t be ignored: The latest third quarter “Major-Market Metropolitan Employment Index” out of the U.S. Labor Department lists Miami-Miami BeachKendall, Florida as the second worst area of the country for high unemployment. It lists Detroit as the only other major metropolitan market with a higher unemployment rate than South Florida. Beyond voter anger and campaign talking points, it is perfectly clear we need less partisan political rhetoric and more real life solutions to solve our unemployment and foreclosure problems. Maybe that is a good agenda for the rest of the country too. Watch Al Sunshine’s “CBS Money Watch” reports Monday-Friday beginning at noon.

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JCPenney Afterschool Fund gives grant to YMCA of Greater Miami BY ROBERT HAMILTON

The YMCA of Greater Miami has received a $25,000 grant from the JCPenney Afterschool Fund to help youth with financial assistance and participation in the Y’s after school programs. The funds will support more than 57 Y after school sites throughout Miami-Dade County and the Upper Keys. “With the help of the JCPenney Afterschool Fund, more children will have access to life-enriching programs at the Y, and parents benefit from this extra support where their children are encouraged to succeed,” said Alfred Sanchez, president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Miami. “At the Y, we believe in nurturing the potential of all children and the Y after school program is one of the many ways that we accomplish that.” The Y has been engaging children after school in Miami-Dade County for almost 100 years. As the leading not-for-profit provider of after school programs, the Y

focuses on the holistic development of youth, promoting creativity, a love for learning, academic success and friendship and character building. The Y’s after school program combines play with academics and fills the gaps in schools by offering enrichment through arts, music, physical education, sports and nutrition. Nationally, JCPenney and the JCPenney Afterschool Fund have supported Y after school programs since 1999. JCPenney Afterschool awards financial aid grants to Ys across the country, enabling them to serve families with limited resources through life-enriching after school programs that inspire kids to be smart, strong and socially responsible. These access grants helped Ys provide critical financial support to 6,500 students during the 200910 school year. For more information about the YMCA of Greater Miami’s after school program, call 305-357-6622 or visit online at <www.ymcamiami.org>.


November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

The Value of All BY KAREN ARONOWITZ, President, United Teachers of Dade

A friend of mine was admonished by her principal for giving a student an F on his report card. “Why did you give Jorge an F?” he demanded. “Oh,” she answered, “I think if you review his record, you’d agree.” Jorge was a seventeen-year-old ninth grader who had shown up to class only seven times during the entire marking period. In spite of calls to a land line (disconnected), a cell phone number (Jorge who?) and a letter home (paper, envelope and stamp provided by teacher), my friend was still accused of not making the required effort to inform the parents of the dire straits of their son. Of course, the parents themselves could have been in dire straits because no one could reach them. This sad tale is used to illustrate the very real fact that teachers are too often viewed as the sole accountable agent in a student’s “lack of progress.” Correction to a student’s lack of progress involves at least three parties, at minimum: the student, the teacher, and the parent or guardian. Take any one of the parties away, and a student’s failure is a monumental problem; involve all three and a student’s failure becomes a way to engage a team with a plan to overcome an obstacle. Sometimes, “lack of progress” is simply an acknowledgement of limitations. One of the most cooperative, diligent students I had was Jenny. Jenny showed up with all her supplies, a smile as big as the Mississippi, and a willingness to tackle any assignment given. Jenny failed my

tenth grade English class. In middle school, Jenny had been in a car accident and her head went through the windshield. Jenny suffered traumatic brain injury. Her slow journey back was cheered by her family and friends. But the new Jenny was not the old Jenny. When she wrote, she could express her thoughts for a short paragraph or two before they scattered. Her handwriting would start out normally, within the lines, but soon grew larger and larger until scribbles appeared on the page. Homework assignments submitted would reflect the efforts of family because she couldn’t perform the same tasks by herself in class. It was with sadness that I assigned the grade Jenny had earned: F-1-A. So when Jenny was assigned to my tenth grade English class the following year, I implored the special education specialist at my school to intervene. Jenny’s parents met with me, our specialist, our school psychologist, and our principal to discuss what was best for Jenny. Jenny’s parents were finally able to accept that a different placement for Jenny would best meet her needs. They were able to face in the second year of Jenny’s recovery what they couldn’t face in the first. Our public schools are constantly evolving, but even so, many of the problems with which children arrive at school cannot be fixed by changing the presentation of the curriculum. With the election of a ‘veto proof’ legislature, teachers are rightly concerned that legislators will try again to impose unworkable mandates on our teachers and students. No matter what issues a student may bring to a classroom, a teacher should not be held solely accountable for that student's failure, as if the student and parents have no role or responsibility for achievement. After the defeat last year of Senate Bill 6, teachers and parents will watch to see if our newly elected governor and our legislators, both new and returning, will work for the good of children in public schools or not. They have the chance to help create a system that fairly addresses responsibility for student progress and provides support for all parties. Let’s hope they’re big enough for their task. The United Teachers of Dade represents 38,000 teachers and school support personnel in MDCPS. The union is committed to being a leader in creating public school reform, fostering a quality public education for all students and elevating the professional status of teachers, paraprofessionals, office employees, and all school support personnel.

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November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

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November 23 - 29, 2010

What the Dickens: It’s holiday season 2010 at Pinecrest

Pinecrest Gardens will look like a page out of Charles Dickens. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

BY JULIE DURSTINE

Pinecrest Gardens, in partnership with Pinecrest Cultural Arts Inc., has announced its inaugural Charles Dickens-themed Holiday Festival and Gift Bazaar, “What the Dickens,” on Sunday, Dec. 5. This all day, multi-denominational extravaganza is sponsored by Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables and Mercedes-Benz of Cutler Bay, and will feature the works of Charles Dickens and other performers with a Victorian Twist — Oliver Twist, that is. Join in for a day filled with shopping, entertainment, performances and food. There will be choirs, craft artisans, puppeteers, mimes, bagpipers, theatrical performances and holiday bell ringers in venues located throughout the Gardens. There even will be a special performance of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol on the newly constructed stage located in the Banyan Bowl. The Gardens will open at 10 a.m. with the lighting of a Christmas tree and will close at

6 p.m. with the lighting of a Hanukkah menorah. Admission is $5 per person; children 5 and under free. “Our Holiday Festival and Gift Bazaar presented by Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables and Mercedes-Benz of Cutler Bay, is a special opportunity for Pinecrest Gardens to bring together the community at large with live performances, tasty treats and a range of festivities,” said Alana Perez, Pinecrest Gardens director. “We want to encourage everyone to come and celebrate the season at this multidenominational and multi-cultural event inspired by the works of Charles Dickens,” she added. Whether you light a Christmas tree, Hanukkah menorah or Kwanzaa candles, there will be something wonderful in store for everyone. Pinecrest Gardens is located at 11000 Red Rd. For more information call 305-669-6990, or visit on the Web at <www.pinecrestgardens.org>.


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2010 Start! Heart Walk at FIU raises more than $550,000 BY JENNIFER HELF

More than 9,000 people joined the American Heart Association at Florida International University on Saturday, Oct. 30, to make a difference in the fight against heart disease and raise over $550,000. The 2010 Miami-Dade Start! Heart Walk was led by co-chairs, Wayne Brackin, chief operating officer of Baptist Health South Florida, and Dr. John Rock, founding dean and senior vice president for Medical Affairs, FIU’s Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine. From a fun Kids Zone to a Start! Memorial area, people enjoyed a day of heart healthy activities. There were special appearances by FIU president Mark Rosenberg, dean Pascal Godschmidt of the University of Miami, and Dr. Ralph Sacco, national president of the American Heart Association. A top fundraiser was Mary D’Argenis-Fernandez who lost her husband to cardiac arrest earlier this year. National Sponsor of the 2010 MiamiDade Start! Heart Walk was Subway.

Baptist Health South Florida, AvMed Health Plans, Assurant, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, Gilly & Natural Choice Vending, Ryder Charitable Foundation, Suffolk Construction, Tenet Healthcare, TRANE, UHealth/ University of Miami Miller School of Medicine as well as other wonderful local sponsors hosted various activities like health screenings. Additional sponsors were Natural Awakenings magazine, Comcast, Salud Al Dia, Univision 23/Telefutura 69, Miami’s Community Newspapers and 97.3 The Coast. The Start! Heart Walk is the American Heart Association’s premiere event for raising funds to save lives from this country’s No. 1 and No. 3 killers — heart disease and stroke. Designed to promote physical activity and hearthealthy living, the Start! Heart Walk creates an environment that’s fun and rewarding for the entire family. This year, more than 1 million walkers will participate in nearly 350 events. For more information on the 2010 Miami-Dade Start! Heart Walk visit online at <www.MiamiDadeHeartWalk.org>.

Pictured (l-r) are Dr. Ralph Sacco, national president of the American Heart Association; Dean Pascal Goldschmidt, University of Miami; Dr. John Rock, founding dean and senior vice president of Medical Affairs, Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, FIU; FIU Cheerleaders; Phillis Oeters, vice president of Government and Community Relations for Baptist Health South Florida; Mark Rosenberg, FIU president, and Wayne Brackin, chief operating officer, Baptist Health South Florida. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

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Black Friday Balloon Drop returns to Southland Mall

Pictured is the inaugural “Black Friday Balloon Drop” conducted in 2009. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– BY MAGGIE ANZARDO

Southland Mall presents its second annual “Black Friday Balloon Drop” on Friday, Nov. 26, at 8 a.m. The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally known as “Black Friday.” On that day, hundreds of balloons filled with store coupon offers, movie passes and mall gift cards will descend from the rafters in three separate locations inside the mall: the Sears Wing, Center Court, and Macy’s Wing. Gnarly Charlie from The Coast 97.3 FM will be onsite supporting the event with music, games, prizes, and much more from 8-8:30 a.m., followed by Sylvana Tróccoli, radio personality from Univision Radio’s AMOR 107.5 FM from 10 a.m. to noon. “Southland is excited to present its second annual Black Friday Balloon Drop,” said Maggie Anzardo, marketing director at Southland Mall. “The Balloon Drop has

become one of our signature events at the center and is held yearly on Black Friday, as a way of rewarding our shoppers during the holidays.” And don’t forget to visit Santa. Families are invited to bring their children to take photos with Santa through Dec. 24 in the Sears Wing at Southland Mall. Southland Mall, located in Cutler Bay, has more than 1 million square feet of gross leasable area. Southland Mall is conveniently located on S. Dixie Highway (US1) and SW 205th Street, off the Florida Turnpike, Exits 11 or 12, and is the only enclosed regional mall servicing South Miami-Dade County down to the Florida Keys. Southland houses approximately 100 specialty stores, including Macy’s, Sears, JCPenney, TJ Maxx, Old Navy, Starbucks, a 16-Plex Regal Cinema and diverse Food Court. For more information about Southland Mall, go online to <www.mysouthlandmall.com> or call 305-235-8880.


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Coral Reef Elementary School opens second computer lab BY RUTH SENSALE

Coral Reef Elementary recently opened a second computer lab to fulfill the technological needs of its students. The lab houses 20 computers and allows the children to spend time working on programs such as Reading Plus, SuccessMaker, Accelerated Reader and Gizmos. Principal Fred Albion said that he Dr. Fred Albion, principal, works with Virginia Sensale (left) and Macey Feinstein in believes the new lab the new computer lab at Coral Reel Elementary. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– will enhance the students’ computer technology as well as rein- win-win situation for the kids,” Dr. Albion said. force basic learning skills. The computer lab is housed in the school’s “We live in a computer-based society. Having our students spend more time on their newest building and serves mostly fourth and fundamentals and work on a computer is a fifth grade students.

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South Motors BMW is a ‘Center of Excellence’ BY NANCY EAGLETON

South Motors BMW has received the 2010 “Center of Excellence” award from BMW North America. The award, given to only 24 of 338 dealerships, recognizes centers that offer excellent customer service, outstanding brand representation and operational excellence. Joe Canaves, South Motors BMW general manager, said that the entire team strives to provide customers with premium service and is honored to be recognized with this highly coveted award. For new customers at South Motors BMW, service excellence begins with the sales team. Personalized service partnered with incredible Sign and Drive offers puts the customer in the driver’s seat when shopping for a new BMW. The team can also offer a customer purchasing a certified pre-owned BMW the choice of two exceptional offers: A no-cost maintenance plan or a financing offer of less than one percent. Once you own the “Ultimate Driving Machine,” the service team at South Motors BMW will provide the ultimate protection. “The service team’s goal is to keep you in the BMW family,” said Dan Warren, service director. “The sales team sells the first car to the customer and the service team sells the second, third, fourth and fifth.” With the BMW Ultimate Service plan, customers pay nothing for four years or 50,000 miles and all service and repairs are performed by the South Motors BMW Certified Service Team. “All of our service technicians are BMW factory trained and all repairs are made with 100 percent original BMW parts,” said Carlos Drake, service manager. To build customer trust and relationships, BMW owners are often partnered with the same South Motors BMW service advisor throughout their vehicle ownership. These advisors monitor the customer’s vehicle each time it is brought in for service to ensure that factory recommended improvements are kept up to date. To continue your worry-free ownership experience, the BMW Extended Vehicle Protection program offers an unparalleled level of security. Program benefits include covered repairs performed at any authorized BMW service facility, genuine BMW replacement parts and 24-hour roadside assistance. “For pennies on the dollar, this program gives customers piece of mind,” said Warren, adding that service costs for BMWs that are out of warranty have been reduced. “We want customers to experience the same excellent service they enjoyed when their car was under warranty. The technology level is so high on these vehicles that most other repair centers cannot

South Motors BMW service director Dan Warren (left) and service manager Carlos Drake work to keep BMW ownership experience worry free. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

properly diagnose and fix a problem. By using original BMW replacement parts, vehicles perform better and retain their value.” The South Motors BMW service department provides free shuttle service to customers traveling within a ten mile radius and customers who purchased their BMW at South Motors can reserve a loaner vehicle. To make wait times more comfortable, the service center features “laptop lane” waiting lounge with TV, complimentary beverages and the BMW boutique. “From the greeters, to the porters, to the service advisors, it’s all about offering the customer a premium service experience,” said Drake. South Motors BMW is located at 16215 S. Dixie Hwy. in Palmetto Bay. The service department is open Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. For the sales department, call 888-8682898; for the service department, call 305-2562350. For more information, go online to <www.southbmw.com>.


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Operation 305 to conduct expo for contractors and suppliers BY MATTHEW BEATTY

Operation 305, a new initiative to include local small businesses in the million-dollar Port of Miami Access Tunnel project, will kick off with the Contractor and Supplier Expo on Wednesday, Dec. 1, from 7:30 to 10 a.m., at the Port of Miami’s Terminal J. Hosted by Miami Access Tunnel, LLC (MAT), a private concessionaire selected by the state to build and maintain the tunnel, the expo will educate contractors about exciting business opportunities with the project. Registration is $25 per person ($35 on day of event), includes a continental breakfast, and is open to all small and mid-size business owners and/or their representatives. A portion of the Expo’s proceeds will benefit Miami Children’s Museum. Participants can pre-register online at TunnelOperation305.com; the deadline for pre-registration is Nov. 26. “The tunnel is one of the largest infrastructure projects ever undertaken by Miami-Dade County,” said Christopher Hodgkins, vice president of the MAT Team. “Hosting this expo is the first step in ensuring we boost the local economy and create jobs right in our own backyard.” Port of Miami Access Tunnel is a public/private partnership including Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT); Miami-Dade County; City of Miami, and concessionaire Miami Access Tunnel, a private consortium including Paris-based equity partner Meridiam

Infrastructure Fund and construction partner Bouygues Civil Works of Florida. The Port of Miami is Miami-Dade County’s second leading economic generator and provides 81,800 jobs, $5 billion in wages and $12 billion in economic output, according to a 2006 study conducted by the Washington Economic Group. Nearly 5,500 large trucks and buses travel to and from the Port of Miami through downtown streets each weekday. Existing truck and bus routes restrict the port’s ability to grow, drive up costs, present safety hazards, and limit redevelopment in the northern portion of Miami’s Central Business District. “The finished tunnel will be a major step toward preparing our port for the future,” Hodgkins continued. “As the port prepares for growth, it is important increasing numbers of locally owned and operated firms join the more than 50 businesses already given contracts so we all see financial growth together.” The Port of Miami Tunnel will provide direct connections between the seaport, I-395 and I-95, create an alternative to the port’s existing bridge, improve traffic safety in downtown Miami by removing cargo trucks from already congested streets, and facilitate ongoing and future development plans in and around downtown. To register for the Contractor and Supplier Expo, or for more information on Operation 305, visit online at <www.TunnelOperation305.com>.


November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

COMMUNITY NEWS BRIEFS Miami Art Museum launches inaugural online silent auction In anticipation of its annual fundraising gala, Miami Art Museum has launched its first-ever silent auction online at <www.biddingforgood.com/miamiartmuseum>. The auction will run until midnight on Sunday, Nov. 28. Some of the items that are featured on the online auction include a Verdura cuff with 18k yellow gold, turquoise, pearls, diamonds, and a luxury cruise in the Mediterranean aboard Seabourn cruise line. Other items include tickets to sporting and entertainments events, fine dining and rare wines. For information, visit online at <www.biddingforgood.com/miamiartmuseum>. MIAMI HEART GALLERY EXHIBITION COMES TO ACTORSâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; PLAYHOUSE The Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Trust Miami Heart Gallery, a photo exhibit promoting the adoption of foster children in Miami-Dade County, is on display in the lobby of Actorsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Playhouse at The Miracle Theatre, located at 280 Miracle Mile, now through Jan. 7. The exhibit is timed to the main stage production of Oliver!, a timeless musical based on Oliver Twist, the literary classic by Charles Dickens. With a nearly 50 percent adoption rate, the exhibit is comprised of 44 portraits taken by some of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s top photographers. The Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Trust Miami Heart Gallery is a partnership between The Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Trust and OurKids, the private agency responsible for foster care and adoption in Miami-Dade County and the Florida Keys.

For more information, visit online at <www.miamiheartgallery.org>.

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MIAMI-DADE PUBLIC LIBRARY MARKS 35 YEARS OF SERVING THE HOMEBOUND The Miami-Dade Public Library Systemâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Connections: Library Service has been meeting the needs of homebound patrons for the past 35 years. The public is invited to join in a celebration to commemorate this milestone on Dec. 1, 10:30 a.m., at the Main Library, located at 101 W. Flagler St. Participants can learn about current resources and trends to promote healthy lifestyles. Hear the smooth sounds of The Singing Miamians and enjoy some fun and informational exhibits. For additional information, call 305-4747251 or visit online at <www.mdpls.org>. THE EMERALD SOCIETY TO PRESENT â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;CHRISTMAS IN IRELANDâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; ON DEC. 10 The South Florida Emerald Society celebrates its annual holiday event, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Christmas in Ireland,â&#x20AC;? on Dec. 10, 7 p.m., in the Westin Colonnade, 180 Aragon Ave, in Coral Gables. The event is open to all and tickets are $75 each. The evening will include an elegant sitdown-and-be-served dinner and entertainment by Fire in the Kitchen and the Breffni Dancers. Fire in the Kitchen is a duo comprising Irish-born Bobby Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Donovan and Bob Noble. The group is known throughout the world and has recorded many albums of Irish music. Breffni Dancers are a group of Irish step-dancers, instructed by the legendary Michael Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Hara. For tickets and reservations, call Mary Ann Kerr at 305-302-2301.

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November 23 - 29, 2010

Miller Ale House earns October Beautification Award from EDC

Pictured (l-r) are Frieda Brown, vice president of Total Bank; Matt Strickland, Miller Ale House assistant general manager; JD Wood, general manager, and Paul Neidhart, Economic Development Council executive director. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

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Miller Ale House, located at 13603 S. Dixie Hwy. in Palmetto Bay, was designated the recipient of the Beautification Award for the month of October by Total Bank and the Economic Development Council. Executive director Paul Neidhart and Frieda Brown, vice president of Total Bank, presented the award on Oct. 20. Sponsored by Total Bank, this monthly award is designed to promote awareness of business owners’ pride in their establishments, as well as to foster a sense of pride in the aesthetic aspects of the community. It recognizes those businesses in South Miami-Dade County that help to make the community a more attractive place to live and work through careful attention to their physical facilities and

landscaping, excellent maintenance, and attractive overall design. Nominations for this award should be forwarded to Frieda Brown at Total Bank 305-964-4365 and to the Community Development Committee of the Economic Development Council. Founded in 1992, the Economic Development Council is a public/private not-for-profit economic development corporation. The council’s overall objective is to implement an economic development program that will foster a positive image for the community, attract new businesses that create quality jobs for residents, while diversifying and strengthening the economic base consistent for the future of South Miami-Dade. For more information about the EDC and how it may help your business, call 305-378-9470.


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Miami Symphony Orchestra makes its seasonal debut BY SAMANTHA REGO

The Miami Symphony Orchestra recently made its seasonal debut at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in Miami. The orchestra, led by music director and conductor Eduardo Marturet, opened the energetic performance with Beethovenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Symphony No. 7 and closed with Ravelâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bolero. The sold-out concert was highlighted with the guest appearance of worldrenowned trumpeter Arturo Sandoval with the presentation of Carlos R. Riveraâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Concierto de Miami for Trumpet and Orchestra. The season premiere set the tone for an exciting array of concerts that will intrigue and please music enthusiasts. Upcoming concerts include â&#x20AC;&#x153;Golden Sounds of Hollywoodâ&#x20AC;? (Dec. 10 and 12) featuring film scores of some of the most famous Hollywood composers. Season subscriptions are on sale now. For details, visit online at <www.themiso.org/tickets.php> or call 305-275-5666. Eduardo Marturet (left) conducts the Miami Symphony Orchestra.

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Bring gold and get cash at Countrywide Gold Buyers Owner of Countrywide Gold Buyers Edwin Carrion (left) and London Square franchise partner John Jaramillo, invite customers to the November gold buying event.

BY NANCY EAGLETON

Countrywide Gold Buyers and Gallery will pay top dollar for your unwanted gold, platinum and silver jewelry. During the company’s November gold-buying events, Countrywide Gold Buyers will be offering additional incentives and paying cash on the spot. With gold prices at an all-time high, now is the time clean out your jewelry drawers, recycle and be rewarded. The Countrywide Gold Buyers gold-buying events will take place at their three locations Nov. 26-28. They include London Square Mall, the newest location that opened in April; The Falls, and International Mall. Countrywide Gold Buyers is owned by Edwin Carrion and Luis Junco, who have built a reputation upon doing business ethically. “It’s important for people to be sure they are dealing with an established and reputable company in order to receive top dollar for their precious metals,” Carrion explained. Carrion and Junco opened their first Countrywide Gold Buyers location in 2009 after serving together as sergeants in the U.S. Marine Corps, where they began buying and selling gold from overseas. Carrion operates the South Florida locations and Junco manages four locations in Rhode Island. “We’ve taken all the good values and morals that we learned from our military experience and our families, and applied it to our business,” Carrion said. The pieces purchased by Countrywide Gold Buyers and the customer transactions are reviewed by the local police department and the company’s scales are balanced, certified and sealed annually by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. “We test the customer’s pieces to determine the karat and then weigh everything right in front of the customer in an honest and transparent way,” Carrion said. “We also have the

pricing for precious metals clearly posted and we inform the customer of the value of their pieces. The whole process may take 15-20 minutes and the average paid per client totals $800.” Countrywide Gold Buyers takes pride in its mission of operating as a green company and customers can feel good that their recycling efforts reduce the extraction of precious metals from the earth. “This is truly a unique process where the customer actually gets rewarded for recycling,” Carrion said. “It takes 20 tons of earth to mine enough gold to make one gold ring. When someone recycles an old gold ring, a new one can be made with no destruction to the environment.” Carrion continued, “We send the precious metal to a refinery to be melted and then it moves on to jewelers who are certified in making new jewelry out of recycled precious metal,” he said. “It’s a win, win, win for the customer, our company and the environment.” Countrywide Gold Buyers offers a referral program that rewards customers with a 2 percent commission on sales from referrals. You also can host a Gold Party at any of the Countrywide Gold Buyers’ locations or your home and earn 10 percent of the total purchases. The staff will provide refreshments and a fun, relaxed atmosphere for the party. At the London Square Mall location, semiprecious stones and handmade, eco-friendly jewelry made by artisans in Colombia are available. The store is managed by franchise partner John Jaramillo and is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 7 p.m. The store is located at 13630 SW 120 St., next to Payless Shoes, and the phone number is 305-252-1114. The Falls location phone number is 786242-9900 and International Mall store is 305592-9799. For more information, go online to <www.BringGoldGetCash.com>.


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Holiday Giving: A Tradition for Rick Tonkinson and Associates Rick Tonkinson and Associates, is a family operated financial planning firm that has an outstanding tradition of philanthropic giving, community service, and client service. As Thanksgiving approaches, plans are underway again for ordering and sending out $50 food baskets to 200 clients with a message from â&#x20AC;&#x153;Our Family to Your Family.â&#x20AC;? On the Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving for the past 12 years, at a cumulative expense of more than $120,000, the firm has delivered these food baskets to grateful clients. The Tonkinson family includes Rick, Margarita, Steven and a lovable chocolate lab, Yogi, who welcomes all who visit their office. The Tonkinsons proudly serve middle class clients, believing that the paycheckto-paycheck working people should enjoy the same expertise and clients services as the client with millions. As a man who came from humble beginnings, Rick Tonkinson

truly understand the blue collar worker and has a passion for serving, educating, and helping his clients make good financial choices. During this Thanksgiving season, the Tonkinson share their blessings in numerous ways, including support for community projects, arts and culture as well as education, health care and social services programs. For those who have the ability to do the same, theirs is a good example to follow. Tonkinson is also available on a pro bono basis to give workshops for employees and others who need even the most basic help, from learning to balance a check book to more complicated financial matters. For more information, contact Rick Tonkinson & Associate at (305)447-6617, 100 Almeria Ave, Ste. 310, Coral Gables, FL 33134. Securities offered through Securities America Inc member of FINRA/SIPC. Rick Tonkinson Registered Representative. Advisory Services offered through Securities America Advisors, Inc. Rick Tonkinson Investment Advisor Representative. Rick Tonkinson and Associates, Inc. & Securities America companies are not affiliated.


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November 23 - 29, 2010

Cauley Square welcomes season with activities, holiday menus BY SHERRY MILLER

The holiday season starts officially on Saturday, Nov. 27, at Cauley Square Historic Railroad Village in south MiamiDade County. However on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, Nov. 25) old fashioned and traditional holiday dinners will be served in both the world-famous Tea Room Restaurant and in The Village Chalet Restaurant, both festively decorated for the season. The Tea Room is famous for its antique artifacts, china, crystal and silver serving pieces as well as crocheted doilies, curtains and classic music. A family-favorite for the holidays, the Tea Room was built originally as a home of pioneers of Henry Flagler’s Florida East Coast Railroad and still maintains the historic spirit of the village built originally in 1903. It is the last historic railroad village in Florida and one of the few remaining in the United States. Decorated especially for the holidays, the Tea Room also is available for group parties and events, either indoors or outdoors, throughout the season with newly added Meditation Cottage and Gardens adjacent. The Village Chalet Restaurant offers Live Jazz Nights every Saturday from 7 to

10 p.m. and every second Friday of the month, 7 to 10 p.m. On Saturday Nov. 27, Cauley Square’s twinkling holiday lights will be turned on for the holiday season reflecting a happy family friendly time for all, including the family pet on leash. Also beginning Nov. 27, from 2 to 7 p.m., Santa will welcome children and there will be clowns, face painting, buggy and pony rides, and festive holiday music on the main patio. Throughout the holiday season Cauley Square’s Tea Room will serve a “High Tea” menu featuring Spinach Quiche and Quiche Lorraine, fresh fruit platter and finger sandwiches. The Village Chalet will serve daily luncheon specials priced at $9.95 per person, plus tax and tip. Specials include sautéed beef, fish, spaghetti and meatballs, meatloaf and more. Cauley Square is located at 22400 Old Dixie Hwy. in Goulds. (Take US1 to SW 224th Street.) Parking is free. For information, call direct to the main office at 305-258-3543; The Village Chalet, 305-258-8900; The Tea Room Restaurant at 305-258-0044, or visit online at <www.cauleysquare.com>.

The holiday season starts officially on Saturday, Nov. 27, at Cauley Square Historic Railroad Village in south MiamiDade County.

SAME DAY DELIVERY AVAILABLE We’ll help you find the perfect arrangement or gift.

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Hirni’s Wayside Gardens Florist 9950 SW 57th Avenue • Pinecrest, FL 33156 305.661.6266 • www.hirnisflorist.com Monday thru Saturday 9:00am to 5:00pm

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November 23 - 29, 2010

Five-story mural created for law firm’s Miami office BY MARIA FLORES

Greenberg Traurig LLC, specifically partner Juan Loumiet, has commissioned New World School of the Arts visual arts graduate Jose Felix Perez (BFA 2010) to paint a mural in its downtown Miami office that will extend five floors beginning at the foot of the first floor occupied by the law firm and culminating at the fifth floor. The mural will be situated on the rear wall of the internal staircase that unites all floors, and will be available for the enjoyment of office traffic, clients, employees and guests. Perez was selected from among five other NWSA college alums who submitted proposals to the firm for this commission. The mural will be dedicated to the three founders of the firm in 1967, and the work aims to capture the vision of the institution. Through the colorful palate and dynamic movement, Perez seeks to showcase the diversity that characterizes the city of Miami and how it has been an integral part of Greenberg Traurig LLC’s growth in the community. The mural is eight feet wide by more than 60 feet tall, acrylic on canvas. It is being developed in sections and will be installed using scaffolds that will be set up and moved throughout the five floors. The colors will bring the staircase alive, offering additional ever-changing visual surprises through peek windows at all levels of the five floors. Surprisingly, this world-renowned firm could have commissioned this work to any renowned artist, nationally or internationally, but instead, opted to work with a local urban artist in an effort to highlight the emerging talent that is present and growing in the community.

Artist Jose Felix Perez is pictured in his studio with some of the panels that will comprise a five-story mural in the downtown Miami offices of Greenberg Traurig LLC.

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November 23 - 29, 2010

Cadillac Escalade Hybrid delivers technology, luxury Ron Beasley AUTOMOTIVE EDITOR

LET’S TALK CARS Cadillac has added a Platinum model to the Escalade Hybrid lineup and bills it as “the most technically advanced large luxury SUV yet.” As the world’s first large luxury hybrid SUV, the big Escalade delivers 20 miles per gallon around town, a 50 percent improvement over the non-hybrid model. Both the Escalade Hybrid and Platinum Hybrid are available in 2WD and 4WD configurations. The 2WD model can tow up to 5,800 pounds and the 4WD version slightly less at 5,600 pounds. The hybrid models include just about all of the standard comfort and convenience features that are standard on an Escalade, including an eight-inch touch-screen navigation system that displays performance readouts of the hybrid system. The 2010 Escalade Platinum Hybrid has a nice package of luxury, style and technology, including a distinctive front fascia and grille,

unique 22-inch wheels, Magnetic Ride Control technology, LED headlights and a DVD entertainment system with screens integrated in the front-seat headrests. Magnetic Ride Control is GM’s fastreacting suspension system and gives the Escalade Platinum Hybrid more precise body motion control. It is a real-time damping system that “reads” the road in one-millisecond intervals. It replaces conventional shocks with electronically controlled shocks filled with a synthetic fluid containing tiny iron particles. Under the presence of a magnetic charge, the iron particles align to provide damping resistance almost instantly. The LED headlights emulate the characteristics of natural daylight much more closely than traditional auto lighting. LEDs are environmentally friendly, with a usable life more than 20 times longer than traditional halogen bulbs. Inside the Escalade Platinum is the latest example of Cadillac’s return to handcrafted luxury detail. The instrument panel, center storage console and door trim are wrapped and stitched by hand. They feature decorative French seams that have an elegant, tailored look and feel. Materials include rich leather on the instrument panel, with

Cadillac Escalade Hybrid has a distinctive front fascia and grille, LED headlights and unique 22-inch wheels.

unique wood inlays and aluminum trim. Aniline leather is unique to the Escalade Platinum and is used to trim the first and second row seats. Contrasting-color stitching is used on the French seams for a distinctive, luxurious appearance. The seatbacks feature embroidered Cadillac wreath and crest insignias. The leather-covered seats are comfortable and convenient, and the power fold-and-tumble second-row seat allows easier access to the third-row seat. Additional standard interior features include Platinum-specific door sills and floor mats; a heated steering wheel; heated

and cooled cupholders, and a power liftgate that opens and closes with the touch of a button. Also, the DVD entertainment system adds screens integrated into each frontseat headrest, in addition to the existing roof-mounted screen. Base price on the 2010 Cadillac Escalade Platinum is $88,140. Ron Beasley is the automotive editor for Miami’s Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277, ext. 261, or by addressing email correspondence to <LetsTalkCars@aol.com>.


November 23 - 29, 2010

COMMUNITYNEWSPAPERS.COM

H O M E

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Old Cutler Animal Clinic

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Kendall Gazette 11.23.2010  

Newspaper PDF