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Community Newspapers

JULY 2012


Happy Birthday America!


––––––––––––––See BIRTHDAY page 3


Today, Independence Day is a federal holiday. Government offices and schools are closed. Some businesses may be closed as well. In some years, many employees use a proportion of their vacation days to create a long weekend. There are many public events, parades, shows, and fireworks displays. This may cause local disruption to traffic. Public transit systems do not usually operate on their regular timetables. Many people display the American flag outside their homes or buildings. Many communities arrange fireworks which are often accompanied by patriotic music. The most impressive fireworks are shown on television. Independence Day is a patriotic holiday for celebrating the positive aspects of the United States. Many politicians appear at public events to show their support for the history, heritage, and people of their country. Above all, people in the United States express and give thanks for the freedom and liberties fought for by the first generation of many of today’s Americans. The next time you see old Glory waving in the breeze, take a good long look.


believed the same way. Those brave men who signed the Declaration of Independence had far more to lose than they ever stood to gain. Most of them were wealthy and influential, but they willingly put all that on the line for this nation because they knew there was something far more important that the materialistic. They knew that true freedom and the ideas freedom was based on were far more important to this nation. These men paid the price for our freedoms because almost all of them lost everything they had for their principles. I cannot help but wonder just how many of us today are that committed to the principles we claim in our lives. By signing the Declaration of Independence, they were committing an act of treason against the British Empire. The penalty for such was death, yet they signed anyway. John Hancock signed twice as large as anyone else, and he explained it by saying, “Now His majesty can read my name without his spectacles.” Stephen Hopkins was a very old man, and he signed with a shaky signature. He said his hand trembled, but his heart did not. These men paid the price for what we enjoy today. They lost everything they had and died penniless.


The month of July is a time of picnics and family gatherings. It is a time when many are taking vacations, and in essence, enjoying the freedom of our country. It is also a time to appreciate that America has greatness in her beauty. From the tree covered hills in Maine, to the clear streams running through meadows in Kentucky, to the vast desert vistas in Arizona, on to the stunningly beautiful coast of California, America simply has it all. There is no other place on earth that has such a diversity of beauty within its borders, which is not what makes America great. America has greatness in the abundance she offers. I have been to many other countries, as some of you have, and I have seen firsthand that even the poor in America have more than most people in other countries. We offer the ability to have a fine home, several cars, toys of every kind and nature, and we offer everything on the installment plan so you do not have to save any money to have any item, but that is not what makes America great. America has greatness in her freedoms and liberties. It used to be that everyone respected the rights of others, even if they disagreed with our thoughts. Today however, society has very little tolerance for anyone else, and even less ability to be civil with others who disagree. Common sense just is not that common in America any more. Today, the in-thing to do is show you are an “UN” person. In other words, the trendy thing is to be unpatriotic; unforgiving, and even unAmerican at times, and we do all this, believing it is our right to do so, and we are justified. The “UN” thing is rapidly destroying the very fabric of our wonderful nation. There are people in America today that are undermining the integrity of our country because they are not motivated by principle but rather by selfishness. They want notoriety, fortune, or power, and they do not care how they get it. They try to revise history to say that our forefathers

In City Government




Mayor Eric H. Jones, Jr.

Vice Mayor Felicia M. Brunson

Commissioner Thomas Dorsett

Commissioner Sharon Fyffe

Commissioner Rita “Peaches” Mack

City Manager W. Ajibola Balogun

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July 2012


Happy 4th of July! I hope you and your family have an opportunity to take time and truly enjoy celebrating America’s birthday. Americans have been celebrating Independence Day since July 4th, 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was signed by 56 wise, brave colonists including Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. These men knew - 236 years ago - they were creating a new, powerful and independent nation where men had certain unalienable rights. Years later, Americans still celebrate these rights on the same day our independent nation was proclaimed. We also salute our troops who have served or are serving now, for they truly soldier on under our flag and in our name. Whether at a Fourth of July BBQ, parade or enjoying a picnic at the beach, please remember to celebrate safely. Here are some safety tips:





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• Always read directions on fireworks. • Always have an adult present. • Use fireworks outdoors only. • Never use near dry grass or other flammable materials. • Light one at a time. • Keep a safe distance. • Never point or throw fireworks at another person. • Never experiment with fireworks.

• Have a bucket of water and a hose handy. • Never attempt to re-light or “fix” fireworks. • Do not wear loose fitting clothing. • Never carry fireworks in your pockets. • Fireworks are not toys. • Use only State Fire Marshal approved fireworks. Join your fellow Americans this July 4th in celebrating our freedom and rights. Happy Fourth of July West Park! Remember to contact me at City Hall with your ideas, suggestions or concerns. I represent you and appreciate your input into the continued success of our beloved city. I can be reached at (954) 889-4164 or email

July 2012



from page 1 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

The red stripes on our flag were painted by the blood that many shed for our freedoms. I close by saying HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You will be 236 years old this year. That is a long time for a nation to remain free but when you take the long, historical view; you are just a CHILD among the nations. Egypt, China, Japan, Rome, or Greece—they all had much longer histories, not so free.

they WORSHIP. You are great because you still take the side of the LITTLE GUYS against the bullies of this world.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You have a rich, spiritual history that continues to influence us today.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! The noble lady in New York harbor stands proudly with her flame lifted up for all to see—a gift from the French, she still inspires even those of us that was born here.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! Your entire history has spanned only four generations, but even though you have a short history, God has blessed you richly. You are the RICHEST nation in the world. Your natural resources are still the greatest of all nations. HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You have learned your lessons well. HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You are a great nation with a great history. When you were very young, the famous French political philosopher, Alexis de Tocqueville visited your shores to learn the secret that enabled a handful of people to defeat the mighty British Empire. HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You are great because you are good! You are good because you are still opening your doors to those of other lands, remembering that you are made up of those who came to these shores searching for freedom and opportunity. You are great because you are still the most GENEROUS of all nations—giving untold millions in aid to 3rd-world countries—sending our missionaries to feed the hungry and starving souls of our world. You are great because you allow your fellows the freedom to choose Who and where

HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You have learned that greatness is not measured in silver and gold, rivers, and forests, or even in bombs and missiles. Greatness is an inner quality found in what we ARE rather than what we POSSESS.

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Barbara Buxton, J.D., LL.M. Florida Attorney

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! Your flag waves proudly in the free air—a symbol of all that makes you great. Whether at a ball game, political rally, or concert, she still sends a chill up and down our spine. HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! Your currency still carries the motto, “IN GOD WE TRUST.” May we learn to transfer this motto from our coins to our hearts! The GROUNDWORK for the freedom we enjoy, has been laid for over 200 years. We enjoy our freedom today because of what our founding fathers, our fathers, our brothers and sisters, our sons & daughters, have done to get and preserve this freedom. Our freedom did not come cheap. The patriots fought and died to give us our freedom. Let us thank them by remembering the price they paid. As we celebrate the birthday of our nation this year and every year remember the sacrifice that was made and the sacrifices made today by those in our armed services. We thank you all.

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July 2012

Summer Safety Vigilance BY VICE MAYOR FELICIA M. BRUNSON Summer is here again, and with it, comes some time to settle in, slow down, and hopefully enjoy some of the little things. Please remember that this time of the year also means school is out, which means more

children out playing, and more adults out exercising or enjoying the weather. Please always be aware of pedestrians, bicycle riders, runners, mopeds and motorcycles. It’s always a good idea to look twice and save a life. It’s that time of year again, when the temperature rises and our parks are filled with West Park residents enjoying barbecues and picnics with friends and family.

Summer safety tips for the pool: As the weather continues to get warmer and our pools look like an attractive place to hang out, I would like to reiterate the absolute importance of summer safety. It is imperative that swimming pools are safe and that we are vigilant in monitoring our children at all times. Children with no knowledge of swimming should not be allowed in or around the pool and it’s always good to get kids to swimming classes from an early age. We can’t just rely on pool fences, we need to ensure that our kids are appropriately supervised at all times when playing. We teach our kids about the importance of stranger danger and road safety – parents

must also understand the importance of pool safety and convey these messages to their children. I cannot reiterate the importance of swimming pool safety. However, with a proper safety fence and appropriate precautions, including constant supervision, swimming pools can mean hours of fun for our kids this summer.

Summer safety tips for kids: • Have kids wear a properly fitted helmet when riding a bike, skateboard, scooter or rollerblading. • Keep a shock absorbing surface under and around home playground equipment. Always supervise kids on play equipment. • Use caution with outdoor grills when children are present. • Install window guards to prevent children from falling out of windows. Install in any room where young children spend time. • Never depend on screens to keep children from falling out of windows. • Limit sun exposure for kids and infants. • Apply sunscreen, even on cloudy days, and reapply every two hours, or after swimming. • Keep children hydrated-drink plenty of water. • Wear light colored clothing. • Never play barefoot on a playground. Summer safety tips for seniors: As our bodies age, skin and fat tissue, the body’s insulators, tend to thin. Because of that change, seniors regulate temperature less efficiently, putting them at greater risk than others from heat-related health problems. Signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion are less pronounced in seniors, who: • Tend to perspire less than younger people—so their bodies don’t shed heat as easily as they once did. • May lose some of their sense of thirst and not feel thirsty until severe dehydration has set in. May take high blood pressure and heart disease medications that remove salt and fluids from the body. These medications, coupled with heat, can cause dehydration— leading to confusion, organ damage and even death. Here are few tips to stay healthy during the hot months: • Slow down. Strenuous activity in extremely hot weather adds strain to the heart. If you must be active, choose the cooler early morning or evening hours.

• Take regular breaks. If you show signs of heat-related illness when engaging in physical activity on a warm day, stop, find a cool place, drink fluids and apply cool compresses. • Eat small meals and eat more often. Avoid foods that are high in protein, which increase metabolic heat. Sandwiches, salads, fresh fruit and vegetables are good choices. • Discuss with your doctor how medications and/or chronic conditions may affect your body’s ability to manage heat. • Take the heat seriously. Rapid heartbeat, dizziness, diarrhea, nausea, headache, chest pain, fatigue, clammy skin, mental changes or breathing problems are warning signs to seek immediate medical attention.

Summer Safety Tips for pets: Your pet is part of your family. And just like any other member of the family, pets can become ill or injured. Would you know how to care for your pet in an emergency? Here are a few tips: • Monitor your pet closely whenever he or she is outside during the summer months. • Provide plenty of water and shade for your pets while they are outdoors so they can stay cool. • Don’t leave your pet outside unattended on a hot day, even in the shade. Shade can move throughout the day, and pets can

overheat and become ill quickly • Never leave a pet unattended in a parked car, even for “just a minute.” An 85° F day can skyrocket a car’s interior to deadly levels—120-130° F—in minutes, even with the windows slightly open or when parked in the shade. The mild days of spring and fall can also pose great danger. • Limit exercise to early morning or evening hours. Remember that asphalt can become scorching and burn your pet’s

paws. Hose down your dog before work, at lunch or whenever you can to provide extra cooling on a hot day. • Keep your pet well groomed and clipped. If your dog has very thick hair, its fur may trap too much heat. Clipping it in summer will help keep your pet cool. • Use sunscreen on your dog’s nose and ears if necessary. Dogs with light-colored noses or fur are especially vulnerable to sunburn and skin cancer. • Keep your pet away from crowded summer events like concerts, fairs and fireworks. Loud noises and crowds combined with the heat and humidity can be stressful and dangerous.

Summer heat safety tips: Summertime means activities and fun under the sun! But even if we love to spend time outdoors in the sun, we must all be careful not to let a heat-related illness spoil the day. • Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles, where temperatures can reach 140o Fahrenheit (F) within minutes. Exposure to such high temperatures can kill in minutes. • Stay hydrated. Carry water (or juice) and drink continuously even if you don’t feel thirsty. Injury and death can occur from dehydration, which can happen quickly and unnoticed. Your body needs water to keep cool and it is the safest liquid to drink during heat emergencies. • Air conditioning provides the safest escape from extreme heat. To maximize its benefits: • Install window air conditioners snugly. • Check air conditioning ducts for proper insulation. • Vacuum air conditioner filters weekly during periods of high use to provide more cool air. • Eat small meals of carbohydrates, salads and fruit, and eat more often. Avoid foods high in protein, because they increase metabolic heat. I hope you take some time this summer to slow down a bit and look around at what West Park has become, not merely a city, but a community with its own identity and a sense of place – a place to call home. Have a blessed summer West Park! Remember to contact me at City Hall with your ideas, suggestions or con cerns. I represent you and appreciate your input into the continued success of our beloved city. I can be reached at (954) 889-4164 or email

July 2012


Summer Greetings West Park Family and Friends! BY COMMISSIONER RITA ‘PEACHES’ MACK

The summer is upon us and safety is always a factor. Children are out of school and some will be busy while others will be idle. I will be vigilant through the City and hopefully you will be too. I would also like to thank you for your prayers. I am getting much better. Looking over our progress, I’m sure you have heard about our Youth Advisory Council. What a pleasure it is to work with such talented young people. If your son or daughter, grandchild, relative are of high school age, have them come out and sit in on one of the meetings this fall. They all have governmental glee in their eyes. It’s exciting and energizing watching them plan and vote and mimic the City Commission. Also, if you have younger children who are interested in the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, give me a call and let’s get them active and camping. On another note, have you passed by

any of the new West Park mailboxes? What a great job Home Depot did! I can’t wait to order one for my home. Also, did you know? Were you there? Recently, Home Depot, along with HOT 105 radio station put together a training event called “Girls Night Out” where women were invited to attend and learn how to use tools. There were ten activity stations, prizes and of course pictures with radio host, Tom Joyner. The City continually looks for ways to encourage, enhance and help the community develop in a positive manner. Finally, I, as your Commissioner, discourage the selling of “black” (candy flavored tobacco) to our children. So if you go into any store in our City and see the flavorful “black” being sold at or near the front counter, please notify me immediately. It is not a good idea to advertise these products where students and minors can just pick it up for purchase. Have a great summer, be safe and at peace with your surroundings. If you have any issues you feel you need help with, please feel free to contact me at 954.889.4156.

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July 2012


WSummer time is upon us. Be safe, be busy and have fun. WRecently I was driving on 19th Street in the 4500 block and I came upon a small, black dog running loose down the middle of 19th Street in front of me. As I pulled up closer to him, he headed for the grassy swale, did his business here and there, and then continued running down the middle of 19th Street. I stopped and watched; he kept on running for several blocks and then disappeared. He looked well fed and clean bit, he had no collar. Indiana Douglas on 27th Street opened her front door one morning and found herself face to face with a large, white and brown, older pure-bred pit bull. The dog looked well kept, had no tag, no collar and appeared friendly. He seemed to be no threat but stayed around her door and wouldn’t leave. Indiana was uncomfortable walking out on to her porch area. She called 911. BSO arrived and tried to coax the dog into the police car. But the dog would not move. A neighbor brought over some food and placed the food on the back seat of the police car. The dog used his paw to pull the food to within his reach, but he would not get into the car. Finally another neighbor brought over a leash and they were able to slide it over the dog’s head and lead the dog into the car. It will be a violation of our updated City Ordinance, (if it is passed by our Commission), to allow your dog to run loose on our city streets. The updated City Ordinance will read, “The fine for the first offense shall be $250, the fine for the second offense shall be $500 and mandatory court appearance for the third offense or subsequent offenses.” I have received phone calls from many

of you regarding animal control issues and our update to our Animal Control Ordinance. Thank you for your input. Our City Staff surveyed many of our neighboring cities to learn what they are doing about these animal control issues in their cities. Please talk to your neighbors about animal control issues in your neighborhood and tell us what you all think about the City Ordinance Update. The suggested update addresses animals running at large on our streets as well as nuisance animals (barking, whining and causing damage), tethering of animals, breeding and keeping more than four dogs or four cats or any combination thereof in your house. You can find the update on page 9 of the June issue of our Community Newspaper. Several weeks ago I attended the Lake Forest Homeowners Association meeting. The speaker for the monthly meeting was our County Commissioner, Barbara Sharief. She talked to us about getting help for modifying or refinancing our mortgages. She also passed out a list of phone numbers for

various services offered here in Broward County. Please call me (954-963-7745) if you would like a copy of this list. Carver Ranches Homeowners Association held a meet and greet event for all the candidates running for office in August and in November of this year. It was very informative to meet the candidates and hear them speak and especially so for the candidates running for Circuit and County Judges. Congratulations to the new Miami Gardens Homeowners Association on the election of its Executive Board and thanks to all of them for their service. Your Homeowners Association is a very important part of our city. The new executive board members include: William Moritz, President; Edele Desir, Vice President; Marcia Simms, Secretary; Lisa Mays, Treasurer; and Eddie Ziegler, at-large. Last month I attended the Peppermint Prom at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post on Pembroke Road. It was wonderful to see so many of our West Park seniors all dressed up and out dancing, singing, eating and having a very good time. Just a reminder to West Park seniors, watch for the Peppermint Prom next year and come have a good time. REMINDER: All city events are listed on the City Calendar in this Community Newspaper. Not all our residents pick up a newspaper so we need volunteers; we need mailmen and mail women to deliver the Community Newspaper. It is easy, just pick up a bundle of newspapers at City Hall and pass them out on your block on your way home. We thank you for doing this, we thank you for helping get out the good information in the newspaper. SUMMARY OF THE JUNE 20, 2012 COMMISSION MEETING We had three presentations this past

meeting, one from Mr. Robert Molleda, of the National Weather Center, who talked about Hurricane Preparedness; One was a proclamation recognizing Jamaica's 50th Anniversary and another was a proclamation recognizing Trinidad and Tobago's 50th Anniversary. The Commission approved six resolutions: • Approving and authorizing expenditure of LETF funds for establishment of a Juvenile Crime Prevention Program. • Authorizing the contract to provide food services for the children attending Camp Bravery this summer • Authorizing Joint participation in the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System • Ratifying CBDG funding for the installation of a City identification sign at 56th Avenue and 38th Street • Ratifying CBDG funding for the installation of a playground safety surface at McTyre Park • Requesting FDOT convey surplus property along 441 to the City of West Park. • The Commission addressed a QUASIJUDICIAL HEARING for a Special Exception Request for Delgo Investments. It was tabled. • The Commission addressed a QUASIJUDICIAL HEARING for a variance request for Advantage Pawn. It was granted. • The Commission passed Ordinance #2012-06 to update the Master Business List to Restrict Uses in Applicable Zoning Districts for Pawnshops. Our City Administrator reported on five topics: • The proposed Juvenile Crime Prevention Program. • The FDOT properties on 441. • The schedule for the 2012/2013 budget hearings. • A public workshop with property owners on the SW 56th Avenue corridor scheduled for June 27, 6:00 p.m. at City Hall. • A public workshop on traffic calming with Lake Forest residents scheduled for July 10, 6:00 p.m. at City Hall. • Chris Wallace, our Finance Director, gave a monthly budget report. West Park Commission meetings take place on the first and third Wednesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. in City Hall. The agenda for the Commission meetings is always posted on the City's website: If you need further information about any of the above agenda items, please contact staff at City Hall at 954-989-2688 or call me at 954-963-7745.

Have a nice summer.

July 2012


Don’t Let Criminals Ruin Your Summer Fun From the Police Department As our thoughts turn to relaxation and family fun this summer, keep in mind that thieves and burglars don’t take vacations from criminal activity. Stay vigilant about protecting your home, your belongings and your identity. Don’t let crime ruin your summer fun. The best advice is to stay alert. Be aware of what’s going on in your neighborhood. Never hesitate to report suspicious activity to law enforcement. If you notice activity at your neighbors’ house when you know they are away on vacation, call 911 immediately. Your tip might be the one that helps BSO detectives catch up to an otherwise elusive burglar. If you notice someone lurking around cars in a parking lot, phone in that tip. If you recognize a suspect from a surveillance video, call Crime Stoppers of Broward County. You may remain anonymous, and Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest. Teaming up and keeping the lines of communication open between law enforcement and observant residents is the best defense against criminals. At home, lock your doors and don’t forget to arm your alarm systems if you have them. When you are out and about, lock your car doors and never keep valuables in plain view. It only takes a few seconds for a car burglar to grab your purse, wallet or cell phone from your car while you step away to walk your dog, pay for gas or put flowers at a gravesite. Don’t make it easier for criminals by leaving a door unlocked. Thinking of making some repairs before a hurricane approaches? Be wary of unlicensed contractors. They might take your money and run, do sub-standard work or have a criminal history. To make sure

the workers in your home are licensed, visit the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website at Be suspicious of anyone who shows up uninvited at your door. Sometimes, criminals knock first, and they can be very charming. They might ask for a drink, for directions, or to use your phone; or they may say they were sent to do work at your house. These are common tactics of scam artists and thieves. If you weren’t expecting them, don’t let them in ! Make your house look occupied when you are out. Leave a television or radio on, or set some lamps on timers. If you go away, stop your newspaper delivery and have someone collect your mail. You can even deter burglars with your landscaping. Plant some thorny bushes under windows that might make an illegal entry difficult. Trim back foliage that might block the view of your home from the street, and add some outdoor lighting so that criminals can’t operate unnoticed. Once you take the necessary precautions to protect yourself, your belongings and your family, you can relax and enjoy a fun and safe summer.

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July 2012

Tips To Lift Your Summer Spirits! School’s out. It’s hot. And you’re not having any fun. BY KENNETH KRONHEIM Licensed Psychotherapist Ah, the joys of summer: The withering heat and school vacations, when your kids give you minute-to-minute updates on their boredom levels. Isn’t summer supposed to be fun and relaxing? If you’ve got summer depression, it isn’t. For some people, summer depression has a biological cause, says Ian A. Cook, MD, the director of the Depression Research Program at UCLA. For others, the particular stresses of summer can pile up and make them feel miserable. You Don’t Have to Live With Depression Understand the symptoms of depression, from sadness to hopelessness to headache. Especially hard is that you feel like you’re supposed to be having a great time. Everyone else seems so happy splashing in the water and sweating in their lawn chairs. So why can’t you? And more importantly, what can you do to make this summer easier? Here’s what you need to know about summer depression. Understanding Summer Depression WW Why do some people feel more depressed in summer? Here’s a rundown of reasons. • Summertime SAD. You’ve probably heard about seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, which affects about 4% to 6% of the U.S. population. SAD typically causes depression as the days get shorter and colder. But about 10% of people with SAD get it in the reverse — the onset of summer triggers their depression symptoms. Cook notes that some studies have shown that in countries near the equator – such as India – summer SAD is more common than winter SAD. Why do seasonal changes cause depression? Experts aren’t sure, but the longer days, and increasing heat and humidity may play a role. Specific symptoms of summer depression often include loss of appetite, trouble sleeping, weight loss, and anxiety. • Disrupted schedules in summer. If you’ve had depression before, you probably know that having a reliable routine is often key to staving off symptoms. But during the summer, routine goes out the window – and that disruption can be stressful, Cook says.

If you have children in grade school, you’re suddenly faced with the prospect of keeping them occupied all day, every day. If your kids are in college, you may suddenly find them – and all their boxes of stuff – back in the house after a nine-month absence. Vacations can disrupt your work, sleep, and eating habits – all of which can all contribute to summer depression. • Body image issues. As the temperature climbs and the layers of clothing fall away, a lot of people feel terribly self-conscious about their bodies, says Cook. Feeling embarrassed in shorts or a bathing suit can make life awkward, not to mention hot. Since so many summertime gatherings revolve around beaches and pools, some people start avoiding social situations out of embarrassment. • Financial worries. Summers can be expensive. There’s the vacation, of course. And if you’re a working parent, you may have to fork over a lot of money to summer camps or babysitters to keep your kids occupied while you’re on the job. The expenses can add to a feeling of summer depression. “This summer, we have worries about the economic crisis layered on top of everything else,” says Cook. “People are feeling more financially strapped. They’re wondering, ‘If I go on vacation, will the job still be there when I get back?’”MM • The heat. Lots of people relish the sweltering heat. They love baking on a beach all day. But for the people who don’t, summer heat can become truly oppressive. You may start spending every weekend hiding out in your air-conditioned bedroom, watching Pay-Per-View until your eyes ache. You may begin to skip your usual before-dinner walks because of the humidity. You may rely on unhealthy takeout because it’s just too stifling to cook. Any of these things can contribute to summer depression. WWWhat can help you feel better? What can you do to make this summer different? Here are some tips on taking control of summer depression. • Get help. It’s simple. If you think you’re getting depressed, no matter what time of year, get help. Talk to a therapist, like a psychiatrist, psychologist, or social worker. Or see your general medical doctor or a psychiatrist who can prescribe medicines. Never take the signs of depression lightly. Don’t wait them out, assuming they’ll resolve. Sometimes, what started as summer depression can turn into a longer-lasting bout of major depression, Cook tells WebMD. • And even if your depression will resolve

in September, that’s no reason to ignore it in June. We’re talking about three months of potentially avoidable misery. “A temporary depression can still be pretty awful,” says Cook. While the symptoms lift in a few months, the impact on your family and job can be permanent. • Plan ahead. Cook says there’s one advantage to a summer depression: you know when it’s coming. June is right there on the calendar. So if you’re feeling OK in the spring, think about the specific aspects of your life that become difficult during the summer. What will help prevent summer depression? What’s the best way to take time off from work? Would signing up the kids for summer programs or camp help relieve your stress? You’ll feel a lot more in control heading into the summer if you have plans in place. • Sleep. Vacations, summer barbecues, the short nights – they can all encourage you to stay up later than usual. But not getting enough sleep is a common trigger for depression. So make a concerted effort to get to bed on time. • Keep up with your exercise. Many studies have found that regular physical activity can help keep depression at bay. So even if it’s getting too hot for your normal activities, find other ways to stay active and head off summer depression. Start earlier in the morning or later in the evening, when it’s not so hot. Consider fitness equipment for the cool basement. If an annual membership to a gym is too expensive, consider joining one for a couple of months just to get you through the summer.• Don’t overdo dieting and fitness. Don’t kick off the summer with a frenzy of dieting and exercise in order to fit into last year’s bathing suit. It’s bound to make you unhappy and anxious. Instead, exercise sensibly and eat moderately. If you try an insanely restrictive diet, you probably won’t be able to keep it up. And that “failure” will just leave you more demoralized and worsen your summer depression. • Protect yourself. Don’t let obligations drag you down. Maybe you always host the enormous family barbecue on Memorial Day or the July 4 picnic. But if you’re feeling overwhelmed, give it a pass this year. Ask another relative to host. Don’t risk pushing yourself into a summer depression just to live up to tradition. • Think about why. If you struggle with

summer depression year after year, ask yourself if there’s a reason. Do you associate summer with a difficult time in the past – the death of a loved one or the break-up of a relationship? Have you had previous bouts of depression during the summer? Without even realizing it, you may have started to associate summer with sadness – an association that gets stronger every summer that you spend depressed. If you do have some unhappy connection with the summer, sorting it out could help you break the cycle. • Talk to your doctor about adjusting your medication. If you’re on medicine for depression, and you find that summer – year after year – makes your depression worse, talk to your doctor about changing your dosage. Maybe he or she could up your dose in the late spring and taper it back down in the fall. It could really help head off summer depression problems, Cook says. • Plan your vacation carefully. Before you book your plane tickets or load up your car’s roof rack for your annual summer vacation, ask yourself this: Is this what you really want? Or is it an obligation you’re fulfilling to a relative? Will it make you happy? Or will it stretch your finances, stress you out, and make you fall behind at work? Consider alternatives. Instead of taking a whole week off at once, might it be better to take off several long weekends spread out through the summer? Would taking time off but staying at home – a “staycation” – be more relaxing? Don’t get locked into a vacation that won’t feel like a vacation. • Don’t beat yourself up. One thing that’s hard about summer depression is that you feel so out of step. Everyone else seems to be having such a swell time. You aren’t. You keep asking yourself, “What’s wrong with me?”

ENJOY YOUR SUMMER! Ken Kronheim M.S. Licensed Psychotherapist Rapid Interventions Inc. 954 984 8508

July 2012


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OUTDOOR FIRE SAFETY TIPS From The Fire Department Summer Storm Fire Safety Protect yourself, your family and your home from the potential threat of fire during or after a summer storm. Every year Americans look forward to summer vacations, camping, family reunions, picnics, and the Fourth of July. Summertime, however, also brings fires and injuries due to fireworks and outdoor grills. Annually thousands of Americans are injured by fireworks and almost 5,000 are injured by charcoal/wood-burning and propane grill fires. Families also enjoy camping in the summer. It is important to follow the park’s rules for the use and extinguishing of campfires.

Fireworks Safety The best way to protect your family is not to use any fireworks at home - period. Attend public fireworks dis plays and leave the lighting to

• Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. If a devise does not go off, do not stand over it to investigate it. Put it out with water and dispose of it. • Always read the directions and warning labels on fireworks. If a devise is not marked with the contents, direction and a warning label, do not light it. • Supervise children around fireworks at all times.

Barbecue Safety Before using a grill, check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line. Make sure the venturi tubes where the air and gas mix - are not blocked. • Do not overfill the propane tank. • Do not wear loose clothing while cooking at a barbecue. • Be careful when using lighter fluid. Do

• Never light fireworks indoors or near dry grass. • Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. Know how to operate the fire extinguisher properly. • Do not wear loose clothing while using fireworks.

Campfire Safety • Build campfires where they will not spread, away from dry grass and leaves. • Keep campfires small, and don’t let them get out of hand. • Keep plenty of water and a shovel around to douse the fire when you’re done. Stir it and douse it again with water. • Never leave campfires unattended. Summertime should be a time for fun and making happy memories. Knowing a

the professionals. If you ultimately decide to engage in this very dangerous activity, make sure fireworks are legal in your area and follow these safety tips:

them with plenty of water, and stir them to ensure that the fire is out. Never place them in plastic, paper or wooden containers. • Never grill/barbecue in enclosed areas carbon monoxide could be produced. • Make sure everyone knows to Stop, Drop and Roll in case a piece of clothing does catch fire. Call 911 or your local emergency number if a burn warrants serious medical attention.

not add fluid to an already lit fire because the flame can flashback up into the container and explode. • Keep all matches and lighters away from children. Teach your children to report any loose matches or lighters to an adult immediately. Supervise children around outdoor grills. • Dispose of hot coals properly - douse

few outdoor fire safety tips and following instructions will help everyone have a safe summer.

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July 2011

Congratulations to the City of West Park, Florida! 2012 has been a story of success for the City of West Park, Florida. They are recent recipients of the 2012 “Playful City USA” designation, and the lucky winner of a FieldLazer™ S100 Field Marking Machine in the Graco FieldLazer “Walk the Line” Giveaway. In 2005, the City of West Park was established as Broward County’s newest municipality. There are currently 14,156 residents. Like many communities in Florida, the City has been hit hard by the current economic challenges and has had subsequent reductions in the tax base. Despite these hard times, the City is committed to maintaining its course of positive progression. Since the City’s inception in 2005, West Park has made significant investments in its parks to facilitate play and physical activity. The City has made substantial improvements to the park grounds with new playground equipment, a new scoreboard, and sports field upgrades. The City has a longer term plan to completely upgrade its 18.5 acre park to a state of the art facility. The City has recently taken on the football and cheerleading programs for the local elementary and middle schools in addition to the ongoing summer and after school programming already in place. The “Playful City USA” designation is a nationwide program honoring cities and towns that make play for children a priority. West Park has two main parks with two football fields, up to eight soccer fields, one baseball diamond, a volleyball court, and two playgrounds which are active year round. To help ensure a safe environment, the City has recently implemented a Smoke Free

policy. This allows the local police to enforce any potential infractions and provide a positive, healthy place for play. In May, 2012 the City won a Graco FieldLazer S100 field marker as part of the Graco FieldLazer “Walk the Line” Giveaway, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. West Park was renting a low pressure field marker and striping over the weekend to keep up. It cost over $100 to rent each time they striped a field. With the new FieldLazer S100 field marker, they not only eliminate the rental fees, but now are saving over 50% in paint costs due to Graco’s high-pressure paint spray technology.

July 2012


New City Ordinance Regulates Pawnshops and Secondhand Dealers BY LORRAINE TAPPEN, AICP, Senior Planner - Planning Department City Staff has received numerous inquiries about locating pawnshops and secondhand dealers such as consignment, cash-for-gold and thrift stores in the City. There are already a staggering number of pawnshops and secondhand dealers in West Park. Many neighboring cities have also identified a large number of these types of businesses. While these stores may provide a service to the public, it is also important to protect the City from creating an overabundance of these types of uses. On June 20, 2012, the City

Commission approved an ordinance requiring 1,000 feet between pawnshops and secondhand dealers. If a new pawnshop or secondhand dealer wants to open in West Park, it must be located at least 1,000 feet from any existing pawnshop or secondhand dealer. These types of businesses must also receive approval from the City Commission before opening their business through the special exception process. The distance requirement and special exception process will prevent an over concentration of pawn and consignments shops in West Park. Ensuring that there is a balance of uses within West Park allows us to continue to be the “City of Positive Progression.�

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July 2011

Hurricane Preparedness Tips For Your Pets

From The Parks and Recreation Department On Saturday, June 16, 2012, The City of West Park held its annual Father’s Day Family Fun Day Event at McTyre Park. Events included tug of war, hula-hoop contests, three legged races, sack races, and a water balloon toss. Fathers had the opportunity to engage in a fun-filled event with their families in a physically fit way. Who would have thought you could have so much fun outdoors with your children? Refreshments were made possible in part by the Broward Sheriff’s Office Fire Department. Special thanks to Hands-on-Broward for providing event volunteers to help with the event logistics. Now the challenge is on! Dads need to get their teams ready for next year in what will be another wonderful outing with your families.

Pet Preparedness Plan Contact your veterinarian or local humane society for information on preparing your pets for an emergency. You may also consider the following tips: BEFORE THE DISASTER

For more information about this event or any other offered by the City of West Park, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 954985-1990 or email: cgarcia@city

• Make sure that your pets are current on their vaccinations. Pet shelters may require proof of vaccines. • Have a current photograph • Keep a collar with identification on your pet and have a leash on hand to control your pet. • Have a properly-sized pet carrier for each animal - carriers should be large enough for the animal to stand and turn around. • Plan your evacuation strategy and don’t forget your pet! Specialized pet shelters, animal control shelters, veterinary clinics and friends and relatives out of harm’s way are ALL potential refuges for your pet during a disaster. If you plan to shelter your pet - work it into your evacuation route planning.

bowls, any necessary medications, specific care instructions and newspapers or trash bags for clean-up. • Bring pets indoor well in advance of a storm - reassure them and remain calm. • Pet shelters will be filled on first come, first served basis. Call ahead and determine availability. AFTER THE DISASTER • Walk pets on a leash until they become reoriented to their home - often familiar scents and landmarks may be altered and pets could easily be confused and become lost. Also, downed power lines, reptiles brought in with high water and debris can all pose a threat for animals after a disaster. • If pets cannot be found after a disaster, contact the local animal control office to find out where lost animals can be recovered. Bring along a picture of your pet if possible. • After a disaster, animals can become aggressive or defensive - monitor their behavior. Don't forget your pet when preparing a family disaster plan.

DURING THE DISASTER • Animals brought to a pet shelter are required to have: Proper identification collar and rabies tag, proper identification on all belongings, a carrier or cage, a leash, an ample supply of food, water and food

PET DISASTER SUPPLY KIT • Proper identification including immunization records • Ample supply of food and water • A carrier or cage

July 2012


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July 2012

Emergency Door Hangers for Residents BY VICE MAYOR BRUNSON

As hurricane season approaches, Visions of Images, Inc. has designed door hangers for West Park residents to notify neighborhood leaders and emergency personnel of residents who need urgent assistance after a hurricane. The door hangers

say “I’m OK” or “I need help.” Specific residents like older citizens, handicapped and/or special need residents are encouraged to stop by City Hall soon to receive the door hangers. For more information on emergency door hangers, please call the City of West Park at 954-989-2688.

Exceptional Images for Lasting Memories Event video production and photography for all occasions Weddings / Bar and Bat Mitzvahs / Celebrations

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July 2012


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July 2012


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Tel: 305.974.0338 • Fax: 305.974.0323

July 2012


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July 2012

Camp Bravery Meets Florida Sheriff’s Youth Ranches From The Parks and Recreation Department This year the City of West Park Camp B.R.A.V.E.R.Y. Summer Camp Program was very fortunate to team up with Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches to offer our children participation in their Mobile Camp during the first two weeks of camp. The program is a combination of two programs which blends the “Law Officers Are Your Friends” program with concepts from the Project Harmony Program. Both were highly structured, fun-filled, and challenging programs promoting leadership, team building, conflict resolution, and giving back to their community. The focus of the program consisted of development of a higher level of selfesteem, positive leadership skills, acceptance of

others, positive utilization of free time, and the appreciation of the cultural differences of others in the community. Our children took part in different activities such as presentations by SWAT, Fire Rescue, arts and crafts, archery, environmental education, group building, and team sports. Children concluded the camp by watching a helicopter land on site and visiting with the pilots with a long list of questions. This was a wonderful opportunity for all camp participants and one that they will surely remember for a lifetime. For more information about this event or any other offered by the City of West Park, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 954985-1990 or email:

July 2012


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July 2012

2012 Ford Fiesta is fuel-efficient, versatile, progressive design Grant Miller Car Corner The best thing about the 2012 Ford Fiesta is the great gas mileage; it gets 29 mpg around town and 40 mpg on the highway. That’s hard to beat for a gasolinepowered vehicle of any size. It’s also comfortable and handles well at higher speeds. The Fiesta is available in four- and fivedoor configurations and offered in three models – S, SE and Titanium. The S is the base model and features items from Ford’s Convenience Package, while keeping keyless entry, auto-locking doors and an upgraded audio system available as options. The SE adds the latest-generation SYNC system, cruise control, premium sound, and other comfort and appearance features. Titanium includes heated leather seats, upgraded appearance items, perimeter alarm and pushbutton start. All models have Ford’s safety and security features, such as: • AdvanceTrac with electronic stability control • Dual-stage first-row airbags

• Driver knee airbag • Side-impact and side-curtain airbags • Four-wheel anti-lock braking system • LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tether Anchors for Children) • Tire Pressure Monitoring System • Anti-theft engine immobilizer The Fiesta also has an appealing, progressive design, with the global Ford face up front and the blue oval badge centered on the grille over the signature inverted trapezoid lower grille opening. Elongated headlights frame and connect the hood to muscular, sculpted front fenders. At the rear, design elements merge, including the chamfered liftgate, the low roofline flowing into a spoiler, and dramatic taillights with honeycomb detailing mounted high in the five-door model’s corners. Under the hood, Fiesta is powered by a 120 hp 1.6-liter DOHC I-4 engine with Twin Independent Variable Camshaft Timing (TiVCT), allowing it to be downsized for fuel economy while continuously optimizing camshaft phasing for throttle response, performance and flexibility. It’s mated to a new advanced PowerShift six-speed automatic transmission and Electric Power Assist Steering (EPAS). This “dry” transmission operates with sealed internal lubrication to reduce friction and add to Fiesta’s fuel econ-

Fiesta has appealing design, with Ford blue oval badge centered on the grille over signature inverted trapezoid lower grille opening and elongated headlights. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

omy. The lack of pumps and hoses saves weight, contributes to better gas mileage and it doesn’t need any maintenance. On the inside, Fiesta has first-row bucket seats and a 60/40 split second-row seat. Cloth or leather seating surfaces vary by trim level, with soft, sculptured surfaces on the centerstack layout give the Fiesta a sense of harmony. Intuitive placement of control knobs and switches, comfort zone settings

and seven different colors of available ambient lighting allows you to adjust a mood, and there are three levels of intensity. Pricing on the 2012 Ford Fiesta ranges from $13,200 to $18,200.

Grant Miller is the publisher of Community Newspapers. He may be contacted by calling 305-662-2277 or by addressing email to <>.

July 2012


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July 2012

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