SPECIAL ISSUE: WINTER PARKâ€™S MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE.
CHARLES CLAYTON CONSTRUCTION
CHARLES CLAYTON CONSTRUCTION
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CONTENTS SUMMER 2015
FEATURES 20 | THE INFLUENTIALS Who calls the shots in Winter Park? Here’s our compilation of people who really make a difference. By Randy Noles, photographs by Rafael Tongol
DINING 74 | It’s Porcine, But Precious
62 | COOL LOOKS FOR SUMMER
COVER ARTIST 8 | SHADY SIDE OF THE STREET
There’s no better way to spend a steamy day than relaxing along Lake Maitland while showing off some very cool looks for summer. Styling by Marianne Ilunga, photography by Rafael Tongol
This brand-new eatery elevates take-out food to a new level. But that’s no surprise, considering the team behind Swine & Sons Provisions. By Rona Gindin, photographs by Rafael Tongol
arts 12 | a time of the signs
70 | A RAISE FOR A RHYME When a Rollins poet sought more dough, did his boss say yes or no? By Dr. Jack C. Lane
WIN T E R P A R K M A G A ZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
Edie Fagan’s watercolor world centers on streetscapes (and dogs). By Randy Noles
In an unmarked warehouse, the Morse Museum is quietly restoring what it has salvaged from the region’s grand and gaudy commercial past. By Randy Noles, photographs by Rafael Tongol
IN EVERY ISSUE 6 | FIRST WORD 80 | EVENTS 88 | ARTSBEAT
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Winter Park | “Vias” | $2,195,000
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FIRST WORD Randy Noles Editor and Publisher Lorna Osborn Senior Associate Publisher Kathy Byrd Associate Publisher Theresa Swanson Group Publisher/new-home publications Jenna Carberg GRAPHIC DESIGNER
share your vision
covered municipal government long enough to know that high-minded studies produced by well-meaning citizens frequently end up gathering dust. Such exercises are often intended to give people the illusion of involvement without having them be, well, actually involved. The visioning process recently launched by the City of Winter Park feels different. That’s partly because this is Winter Park — a place where people are unusually involved and passionate about their city — and partly because of the caliber of the 21-member Visioning Steering Committee. Busy people won’t sign on for a yearlong project that they assume will be ultimately ignored. The visioning panel — along with city staffers and facilitators from Logan Simpson Design of Colorado, a consulting firm that specializes in community planning — is charged with producing a big-picture blueprint for Winter Park’s future. Recommendations will be non-binding, but at this point it’s the process itself that really counts. If done right, the final document will provide guidance for decades to come. To the city’s credit, it’s working to make certain that everyone who wishes to participate has an opportunity to do so. Success, of course, depends entirely upon involvement. If people feel truly vested in the process, then the vision is more likely to become a reality. Visit visionwinterpark.org, a website recently launched by the city, and check it out for yourself. If the website doesn’t answer your questions, email email@example.com and ask. If you’re still not feeling fully informed, call 407-599-3665 and have a conversation. By now, there have been several opportunities for public input. There’ll be additional opportunities in the coming months. Winter Park, a place that’s defined by its unique character, needs people who care about it to step up and speak their mind.
WIN T E R P A R K M A G A Z I N E | SUM M ER 2015
Michael McLeod EDITOR AT LARGE Clyde Moore PARK AVENUE EDITOR Jay Boyar ArTS EDITOR Rona Gindin DINING EDITOR Marianne Ilunga FASHION EDITOR Harry Wessel CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Jay Boyar, Dana S. Eagles, Dr. Jack Lane Contributing Writers Rafael Tongol Contributing Photographer Rick Walsh, Jim DeSimone FOUNDING PARTNERS
GULFSHORE MEDIA Daniel Denton President
Which shouldn’t be a problem. Everybody I know has opinions about what the city should and shouldn’t do, short-term and long-term. In fact, Winter Park today is a thriving testament to the importance of visioning. Its founders weren’t fast-buck speculators; they were visionaries. And their plan for the city has stood the test of time since the 1880s. Settlers like Oliver Chapman and Loring Chase undoubtedly never used the word “visioning.” But there’s no question that, in the realm of urban design, they helped invent the concept. Participation in this process ought to be a nobrainer for Winter Parkers. After all, visioning is in our civic DNA.
Randy Noles Consulting Publisher Pam Flanagan General Manager Pam Daniel Editorial Director Norma Machado Production Manager
Copyright 2015 by Florida Home Media LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Gulfshore Media LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without written permission of the copyright holder. Winter Park Magazine is published four times yearly by Florida Home Media LLC, 2700 Westhall Lane, Suite 220, Maitland, FL 32751
FOR GENERAL INFORMATION, CALL: 407-647-0225 For advertising information, call: Kathy Byrd, 407-399-7111; Lorna Osborn, 407-310-1002; or Theresa Swanson, 407-448-8414
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SHADY SIDE OF THE STREET Fagan’s watercolor world centers on streetscapes (and dogs).
die Showalter Fagan, a native Winter Parker, loves dogs. That fact is relevant because this issue’s cover, a street scene of Park Avenue called Park Avenue Shade, was painted as an auction donation to benefit Franklin’s Friends, which helps support several local canine-oriented, not-forprofit organizations. Fagin was also the poster artist for Winter Park’s 2005 Doggie Art Festival, the 2006 Winter Park Autumn Art Festival and the 2011 Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival. In 2012, she published Adored Dogs, a collection of 61 watercolor portraits with an endearing biographical sketch of each furry subject. She has painted more than 300 dog portraits and still accepts occasional commissions. Yet, despite her passion for pups, Fagin’s favorite subjects are streetscapes, whether in the Bahamas, a French village or, more recently, Edie Showalter Fagan is a Winter Park native who loves Winter Park. The National Watercolor Society painting street scenes in her hometown.
WIN T E R P A R K M A G A Z I N E | summer 2015
and the Florida Watercolor Society have honored Fagin with signature memberships, and her work has been published in Splash 9, a collection of watercolors by top contemporary American artists, and the newly released Splash Retrospective: 20 Years of Contemporary Watercolor Excellence. Fagin, who as a child took summer art-camp classes at Rollins College, later majored in art at Queens University in Charlotte, where she “focused on design, drawing, printmaking, pottery and art history — everything but painting.” She took up watercolors in 2001, after her children were grown, and calls Pasco County artist Pat Weaver, under whom she studied, her mentor. To see more of Fagin’s work, visit her gallery representative, Be On Park on Park Avenue. Or check out her website, where signed, numbered prints are also available, at ediefagan.com. — Randy Noles
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Dr. Laurence Ruggiero is illuminated by the fully restored Orange Court Motor Lodge sign, perhaps the crown jewel of the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art’s hidden collection.
A TIME OF THE SIGNS In an unmarked warehouse, the Morse Museum is quietly restoring what it has salvaged from the region’s grand and gaudy commercial past. BY RANDY NOLES PHOTOGRAPHS BY RAFAEL TONGOL
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
he interior of this nondescript, unmarked warehouse is so cool, clean and quiet, you might assume that it’s a secret laboratory in which rogue scientific experiments are conducted. That impression is reinforced when you’re instructed, more than once, not to be reveal the precise location in your story. When you arrive, you’re to check in with a uniformed security guard, who sits at a small desk just beyond the coded entry door. It all seems like very serious business indeed. Then, with the flip of a switch, you’re awash in neon and nostalgia. The vast dimness of the multilevel space has been illuminated by grand and garish signs, some of which are suspended from the rafters, and many of which you remember as glowing icons of Central Florida’s commercial landscape, especially after sunset. “Signs, signs, everywhere there’s signs,” sang the Five Man Electrical Band in 1971. But they didn’t know the half of it. There’s the sign for Club Juana, its brash brushstroke letters resplendent in glorious red and yellow, and Circus Circus, with contours shaped like a double-spired big-top tent bedecked by flags. Both establishments, as if you didn’t know, were legendary Casselberry gentlemen’s clubs, where buck-naked dancers pole-danced for patrons and riled regulators. At Club Juana, strippers famously staged Macbeth in the Buff, an ultimately successful effort to thwart yet another anti-nudity ordinance by presenting what the owners purported to be a legitimate theatrical performance. What the politicians couldn’t accomplish, the Florida Department of Transportation did, buying the Club Juana and Circus Circus properties in 1996 to make room for an overpass at U.S. Highway 192 and State Road 436. And there’s the sign for Ronnie’s, its elegant blue cursive signature causing you, not unlike Pavlov’s dog, to involuntarily salivate at the recollection of fresh deli sandwiches, tubs of pickles, hot rolls (for which pats of butter were rigidly rationed) and oversized desserts, such as an extreme ice-cream sundae called the Mongombo Extravaganza. The studied rudeness of Ronnie’s servers, fans said, only added to the experience. The restaurant closed, typically without apology or explanation, in 1995. And there’s the sign for Gary’s Duck Inn, a zig-zaggy 1960s’ relic from the iconic Orange Blossom Trail eatery that was the conceptual godfather of the nation’s largest seafood-based casual-dining chain. In 1963, original owner Gary Starling sold the business to a group of investors that included Bill Darden, a Georgia-born restaurateur who figured a similar, no-frills seafood concept could catch on nationwide. Darden figured correctly, and departed to start Red Lobster in 1968. Gary’s, however, soldiered on until 1994, when competition and Orange Blossom Trail’s encroaching seediness spelled its doom.
arts From a censorious deli to a notorious strip club to an old-school hardware store to a rowdy grunge bar, the signs preserved by the Morse represent an array of Orlando-area businesses.
The most visually striking sign, from the longdemolished Orlando Court Motor Lodge, dates from the 1920s and boasts huge white neon letters against a background of red, highlighted by 115 twinkling incandescent bulbs. Less flashy is the recently acquired Best Western sign from the soon-to-be-demolished Mount Vernon Inn, which opened in 1949 and was for decades Winter Park’s only mid-range hotel. With it came a small sign that marked the inn’s retro Red Fox Lounge, a neighborhood hangout for generations that gained hipster panache in recent years. But there are also dozens of far more modest emblems, many of them hand-painted on wood or metal, which once heralded the locations of an array of Winter Park businesses. There’s La Belle Verrier, The Golden Cricket, Cobweb Antiques, Cottrell’s, Leedy’s, Francis Slater, the Winter Park Land Company and even the Morse Museum, from its early pre-Park Avenue days. Yes, this warehouse is one surreal place. But it’s an aspect of the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art — best-known for its worldclass collection of Tiffany glass — that was near and dear to the heart of founding director Hugh McKean, who wasn’t pretentious when determining what was art, and what wasn’t.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
ome unusually large, complex or significant signs are disassembled and carefully stacked in pieces, awaiting restoration or reassembly. Supervision of the operation is the purview of Tom Mobley, for 30 years the museum’s building manager. Mobley works primarily with Gary Yoder, owner of Jayco Signs in Maitland, on salvaging and refurbishing the curious artifacts, many of which were designed by the late Bob Galler of Graphic Systems in Orlando. “We’re just old-timers,” says Yoder, who founded Jayco with his father in 1972. “Most people in the sign business these days want to be in the graphics department, sitting behind a computer all day. Nobody wants to get out and do the actual work of restoring old signs. So I have a combination of people who’ve been doing it for years, and young people who want to learn the craft.” Unquestionably, “craft” is not an overstatement. To create a neon sign, glass tubing is heated under flame until it’s malleable. Artisans use their hands to feel the heat and the degree of softening in the glass, waiting for just the right moment to shape the tubing into graphics or lettering. With the glass still soft, the “glass bender” then gently blows into the tubing to return it to its original
diameter before filling it with gas. Metal electrodes at each end of the tube excite the gas molecules, iodizing them and creating a color. Different gasses give off different colors; neon produces bright orange, while hydrogen produces red, helium produces yellow, carbon dioxide produces white and mercury produces blue. A particularly skilled neon sign maker can synch the electrode zaps and make the alternating colors simulate movement — a bucking horse, a flying arrow, a twirling pizza. Many Winter Parkers will remember the over-the-top Roper’s sign on Orange Avenue, where a neon cook appeared to grill and flip burger patties. That sign, unfortunately, was demolished when the business closed in 1967.
aving some clue about how these signs were made makes them even more impressive. Just look, for example, at elements of the red, white and yellow McNamara Pontiac sign, with its artdeco design and familiar Indian-head silhouette. Motorists on West Colonial Drive cruised by it from 1963 until its removal, long after the dealership closed, in 2013. The sign is made entirely of porcelain — yes, por-
arts The familiar Merita bread sign, which loomed over I-4 near Kaley Avenue since the early 1960s, is now in rusty bits and pieces and waiting for restoration.
celain — a distinction likely lost on commuters but a problem for Yoder, who is an expert but not a miracle worker. “I don’t know if we can ever bring that one all the way back,” he says. “I don’t know of anyone who works with porcelain anymore.” Here and there are rusty components of the recently acquired Merita bread sign, which loomed over I-4 near Kaley Avenue since the early 1960s. The bakery closed in 2012, and the museum salvaged the massive glass-and-steel structure last year. For many locals, the Merita sign (and the unmistakable aroma of baking bread when driving past it) marked the physical and emotional gateway to the city. The old neon sign from Miller’s Hardware is fully restored, although the company is still in operation and busier than ever, albeit with a more modern sign. So is the sign for the Fairbanks Inn, known locally as the FBI, which first opened in 1946. By the time it closed in 2000, the rowdy hole in the wall was known for hosting noisy jam sessions and touring grunge and metal bands.
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
The napkins on the bar read: ‘’No hassles, high prices, or cover. Just lots of pool and pinball.’’ And there’s the sign for Harper’s Tavern, a more upscale, wood-paneled watering hole where patrons enjoyed strong cocktails and listened to live entertainment while waiting to dine in the attached Le Cordon Bleu restaurant. Harper’s, located in the refurbished building now occupied by Cask & Larder, was one of the oldest continually operating bars in Florida until fire gutted the building in 1996.
McKean, who died in 1995, started snaring signs from mostly defunct Central Florida businesses in the 1970s, mainly to prevent them from being destroyed. “We’re now in the final phase of continuing Mr. McKean’s collection,” says the museum’s current director, Dr. Laurence Ruggiero, who McKean hired. After the acquisition of the Merita sign in 2014, Ruggiero points out, there simply aren’t that many vintage signs — especially those crafted from neon — left to save. They’ve mostly been replaced with generic and charmless stampedplastic light boxes. There are a few — the Western Way Shopping Center on West Highway 50 and Olde Dixie Fried Chicken on South Orange Avenue in Pine Castle come to mind — that would warrant saving, but they were still in service at press time. “Hugh felt that these signs were important parts of local history,” says Ruggiero, who recalls accompanying McKean to a Maitland vegetable market called Little Big Horn to buy produce. “Next thing I knew, we had the sign.” Indeed,
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Generations of Winter Parkers enjoyed cocktails and conversation at Harper’s Tavern. It was one of the oldest continuously operating drinking establishments in Florida when the building burned in 1996.
the modest, hand-painted work of decorative art, with its rustic letters and horn of plenty logo, hangs in the warehouse, which now spans 27,000 square feet after a 2005 addition.
ecorative art? Sure, why not? McKean enjoyed recounting for interviewers how much of the museum’s nowpriceless Tiffany collection was scatted about the artist’s ruined Laurenton Hall, N.Y., estate, free for the taking. Only he and his wife, Jeanette Genius McKean, seemed to recognize its value. So, if McKean chose to believe that old signs are legitimate forms of decorative art, who would have had the standing to argue with him? “It’s all design,” agrees Jennifer Perry Thalheimer, the museum’s curator and collections manager. Thalheimer holds a master’s degree in the history of decorative arts and design from the Parsons School for Design and the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York City. You can’t help but wonder how many of those who earned such degrees were able to find jobs doing exactly what they were trained to do, as Thalheimer did. “The decorative arts were once snubbed,” she continues. “Dr. McKean felt strongly that we should
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
not create hierarchies of art. So we approach these signs as we would any works of art, fixing them while learning their history. Plus, people identify with these signs. They’re part of the landscape. And making them — fixing them — is a craft that’s dying.” Ruggiero agrees. He points out that every sign in the warehouse was a gift, although, in the case of the larger ones, such as the 17,000-pound Merita sign, the museum had to pay for them to be moved. “We don’t get them when they’re in great shape,” he adds. “We get them when they’re about to be destroyed.” Galler, in fact, began receiving long-overdue public attention when his signs began disappearing in the early 2000s. Newspaper reporters sought him out and interviewed him about his work. “It makes you feel good that so much of your stuff is still out there,” he told Orlando Magazine in 2009. “But it makes you sad when you see it come down.”
lright, even if it is all art of a sort, why so much trouble and expense for the restoration of signs, particularly signs touting some pretty unsavory businesses? For one reason, the Morse has the money
to do whatever it wishes. And what it wishes to do is carry forward the legacy and the aesthetic of Hugh and Jeanette McKean. “We do what we think an American museum ought to do,” said McKean to a reporter in 1990. “When we collected our Tiffany, they didn’t accept it either. We think [the sign collection] is lively. It isn’t self-conscious. It comes right out of society, right out of our people.” Also, the museum hopes to someday display the signs. However, Ruggiero is quick to point out that there are no firm plans to do so in the near future. For now, museum officials are keeping their eyes open to make certain that the few remaining vintage signs still in use make it to the warehouse, not the landfill, when and if the owners decide to replace them. Currently, however, no one but invited guests are allowed inside. “It may seem odd that the Morse, which is known internationally for its unique collection of works by Tiffany, should also have a group of brash and brassy neon signs,” admits Ruggiero. “But Hugh was interested in everything, and greatly loved everything that was a part of the history of his community. So here they are, much to the delight of everyone.”
All that glitters … Graduation u Anniversary u Birthday Holidays u Engagement u Wedding Reynolds & Co. Jewelers Since 1974
“Serving Winter Park For Forty Years” 232 North Park Av enue •
Winter Park •
4 07. 6 4 5 . 2 278•
w w w. Rey n o l d s J ewe l e r.co m
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
Influentials Who calls the shots in Winter Park? Here’s our compilation of people who really make a difference.
By Randy Noles PHOTOGRAPHS BY RAFAEL TONGOL
ou’re going to compile a list of the Most Influential People in Winter Park? What are you thinking? Everybody in Winter Park is influential — or used to be, is going to be, or would like to be. Such an effort is doomed to failure. Whatever the result, you’ll just end up making people angry. So warned the naysayers several months ago, when we announced our intention to tackle just such a project. Naturally, we understood the pitfalls. And we understood that countless worthy contenders would invariably be overlooked. Yet, it seemed to be a timely exercise. A highly contentious (and sometimes embarrassing) mayoral race, held in March, demonstrated yet again that Winter Park is a city divided — indeed, it has divided been for decades — with several factions angling for influence, if not outright control. Of course, this being Winter Park, the factions are difficult to define, occasionally overlap and don’t follow the traditional liberal-versus-conservative fault lines that we’ve come to expect when watching television news broadcasts or arguing with ideologically intractable relatives. Regardless, virtually everyone shares an overarching, unassailable belief
in Winter Park exceptionalism. How to keep it exceptional — or to make it even more so — is what causes dissention in these parts. What are the issues that divide Winter Parkers? Where to begin? Most disagreements seem to center around historic preservation (everyone claims to be for it, but some take a more laissez-faire attitude than others); development (everyone realizes it’s inevitable, but some are vexed by higher-density projects); and the tree canopy (everyone professes love for trees, but some say the city’s approach to urban forestry is clumsy). Protecting the single-family residential character of the city’s historically African-American west side is likewise a source of continuing debate. And discussion of a new library — does the city really need one, and if so, where should it be built and how should it be funded? — is already stirring up heated exchanges on social media. The efficacy of city government itself is an issue on which many Winter Parkers diverge. Some view the majority of local elected officials as disconnected and disingenuous, and say so at every opportunity. Others — the proverbial silent majority — see city commissioners and staffers as, for the most part, efficient, pragmatic and effective, generally striking an appropriate balance between competing interests while prudently using tax dollars to provide premium services.
S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
How, then, did we define influential? Basically, we asked the panelists to consider not only old-school power brokers who always seem to get their way, but also people who passionately advocate for their points of view, even if they’re sometimes (or even usually) unsuccessful.
None of this fractiousness is likely to change. But will everyone settle down, at least temporarily, now that the election is over? Hardly. If anything, rhetoric from all quarters is likely to heat up against the backdrop of a highly publicized “visioning process.” It’s a yearlong exercise during which a 21-member Visioning Steering Committee has been tasked with looking a half-century into the future and creating a big-picture planning document for the city. The committee’s recommendations will be non-binding. Indeed, municipal governments often launch such efforts with great fanfare only to ignore the resulting conclusions and recommendations. Still, many Winter Parkers have come to regard the process as significant, if only for the message it will send about the city, and how it sees itself. Task force members, 12 of whom were appointed by city commissioners and eight of whom were appointed by city staffers, represent a cross-section of people who live or conduct business in Winter Park. A handful, coincidentally, appear on the Most Influential list — and all are in a position to help shape various aspects of the end product. Nonetheless, some of the committee appointments have drawn criticism from those who believe that development interests hold undue sway. Several mayoral selections were recently rejected, at least in part to quell that concern. Plus, in the wake of the herculean effort required to save the Capen House from destruction, a historic preservation brouhaha is heating up again. Proposals are afoot that would, among other changes, decrease the threshold of homeowner votes required to form a historic district from 67 percent to a simple majority. Winter Park’s historic preservation ordinance is the weakest in the state, say proponents, who add that home values actually improve in cities where preservation is a priority. Sincere property-rights advocates — and others no doubt motivated solely by the ability to profitably flip their old homes to builders of McMansions — insist that the city’s current approach is more than adequate. So, what better time to stir the pot further by publishing a list such as this? Actually, the list isn’t ours, strictly speaking. We asked 20 well-connected Winter Park residents — and in several cases, non-residents with indel-
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
ible Winter Park connections — to nominate people they believed belonged on a Most Influential list, and to tell us why. The only rule was that they couldn’t nominate themselves. In addition, we nixed elected officials whose purview stretches beyond the city, hence the absence of, for example, Rep. John Mica (R-Winter Park), who is no doubt influential locally but whose congressional district also includes much of Seminole and Volusia counties. Who were these panelists, and what were their qualifications? Sorry, that’s a secret. We promised each panelist anonymity so that he or she would feel comfortable speaking frankly. All communication was done via email, so even most panelists don’t know who all of their fellow panelists were. You’ll simply have to trust us on this. We can tell you that you’d be impressed by the stature and diversity of the participants. Among them were developers, preservationists, volunteers, businesspeople, educators and activists. You’d also be impressed (as were we) by the fact that many panelists nominated those with whom they vehemently disagree. How, then, did we define influential? Basically, we asked the panelists to consider not only old-school power brokers who always seem to get their way, but also people who passionately advocate for their points of view, even if they’re sometimes (or even usually) unsuccessful. Contrarians often spark needed conversations, even if their arguments don’t ultimately prevail. Those appearing on the main list all received multiple votes, and had effective advocates. Many others received fewer votes, but in the view of Winter Park Magazine’s editorial staff, warranted recognition. These names are revealed on pages 56 and 57. Agree or disagree with the final selections, we think the Most Influential People in Winter Park list reflects the eclectic nature of the plugged-in panelists. One thing can be said for certain: few cities in Central Florida — or anywhere else, for that matter — would have such a rich array of choices. Editors Note: The Most Influential People are shown on the following pages in no particular order.
Steve Leary at Winter Park City Hall.
Vice President, Leary Management Group Mayor, City of Winter Park
Winter Park has a commission-manager form of government, meaning the city manager is, in effect, the chief operating officer. Being mayor, conversely, is a thankless, part-time job that pays a whopping $3,000 per year. Why, then, did Leary and his opponent, retired Circuit Judge Cynthia Mackinnon, raise and spend in excess of $250,000 to win the seat? There’s a good reason, actually. Regardless of what the puny stipend might suggest, a mayor with a strong point of view can shape an agenda and exert immeasurable influence in seeing that it’s carried out. Leary, previously vice mayor, eked out a close win in March, and is poised to be the face and voice of the city at a time when residents are facing a number of crucial issues — historic preservation, library construction (or not), development density and many more. Leary was criticized by the Mackinnon camp for being too politically partisan (during the campaign, the Orange County Republican Executive Committee sent mailers on his behalf) and too pro-development. Yet, his supporters pointed to a long list of decidedly non-partisan accomplishments, among them snaring state funds to bury utility lines along Fairbanks Avenue and to restore Lake Lillian in Mead Botannical Garden. In general, Leary made the indisputable case that Winter Park looks gorgeous, is in excellent fiscal shape and remains the region’s most prestigious address. How about more of the same? The majority of voters were just fine with that. “One of the things I’m most proud of is getting more and new people interested and involved in the civic discourse in Winter Park,” Leary says. “In addition, I’ll maintain our strong fiscal discipline, bring families back into focus at City Hall, and focus on our participation in regional challenges and opportunities.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Steve has an opportunity to not only show his leadership style, which is very engaging, but also change the tenor of
politics in Winter Park … this will be a challenging three years, but Steve has the intellect and the ability to lead us through it … it was a tough election, but I think even Steve’s opponents will come to realize the right choice was made … Steve understands that the world doesn’t end at the city limits, and will engage on a regional level.
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Daniel Butts at Battaglia Group Management, LLC.
Insider Daniel Butts
COO, Battaglia Group Management, LLC
The family-owned Battaglia Group specializes in the investment, management and development of commercial properties, including three in Winter Park. (The Battaglia Group is, in terms of leasable square footage, the largest landlord on Park Avenue.) Butts, part of a third generation of company leadership, is the son-in-law of Bill Battaglia, president and chief executive officer. Among Butts’ many corporate responsibilities are leasing, project management and government relations. But it’s his personal civic involvement that landed him on the Most Influential roster. Butts, who earned an MBA from the Crummer Graduate School of Business at Rollins College, is president of the Winter Park Public Library’s board of trustees and serves on the city’s Library Facilities Task Force, which has been charged with recommending whether to renovate the current facility or build a new one elsewhere. (In late June, the task force released a report recommending construction of a new library in Martin Luther King Jr. Park.) He’s a past chairman of the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce board of directors, and is a graduate of the chamber’s Leadership Winter Park program. Butts is on the board of advisers of the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency, and spent a decade on the board of directors of the Winter Park Crosby YMCA, serving as chair in 2007. “I enjoy working with others to solve big problems and make great things happen,” says Butts, an active member of All Saints Episcopal Church. “I’m a firm believer in the power of collaboration, which transcends the partiality that can sometimes divide us. Winter Park is unique in that it has a rich history with many established leaders and institutions, yet it’s home to so many innovative and dynamic young families and individuals who have so much to offer. If I can leave this community a little better than I found it, that’s a legacy worth leaving.”
WHAT THEY SAY:
Daniel is involved in civic, business and political issues more than most people would think … very smart and unflappable … a consensus builder and a problem solver. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Dori Stone at Winter Park City Hall.
Director of Planning and Development, City of Winter Park
When it comes to development, Stone is without a doubt the most plugged-in person in Winter Park. It’s her job to be. She doesn’t make policy — the City Commission does — but she’s the keeper of the gate through which developers must pass, and the conduit between them and the elected officials who’ll ultimately decide the fate of their projects. If commissioners say yes to a proposal, Stone and her staff may well have said no a dozen times before a vote was ever taken. Particularly with the economy perking, Winter Park is not an economic-development hard sell. But encouraging projects that fit the city’s distinctive character requires the kind of planning savvy and negotiating chops that Stone, who holds a master’s degree in public administration from UCF, has honed over a 30-year career. (Prior to joining the City of Winter Park six years ago, she was director of planning and development for Seminole County.) Stone is also director of the city’s Community Redevelopment Agency, an area of about one square mile that encompasses more than 50 percent of the city’s businesses. That means she also wields influence over capital improvements and incentive programs, large and small, in places such as Park Avenue, the west side and the burgeoning U.S. Highway 17-92 corridor. And if all that weren’t enough, Stone is also project manager for the city’s much-discussed visioning process, which will set broad (but non-binding) guidelines for policymakers decades into the future. Stone describes herself as a facilitator, a communicator and a hands-on manager who emphasizes personal involvement “and making sure all the right people are at the table.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Nobody has her finger on the pulse of the city like Dori does … one of the most knowledgeable planning professionals
in the region … a great consensus builder … she’s tough but fair, and has the kind of outgoing personality you don’t expect from planning types.
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
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John and Gail Sinclair at Rollins College.
Chair, Department of Music, Rollins College
Executive Director, Scholar in Residence, Rollins College Winter Park Institute
If Winter Park has a cultural and intellectual power couple, it has to be John and Gail Sinclair. John is the indefatigable chair of the college’s Department of Music and artistic director of the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park. He’s also director of music at the First Congregational Church of Winter Park — where he seeds the choir with collegiate singers and instrumentalists — and director of the local Messiah Choral Society. Every holiday season, he wields a baton at Epcot’s hugely popular Candlelight Processional. In addition to his work as a professor, a clinician and a department head, John conducts more than 150 live performances per year, making him arguably the most recognizable arts personality in Central Florida. Gail, a professor of American literature and an expert on Fitzgerald and Hemingway, also heads the Winter Park Institute at Rollins College. WPI is the college’s most high-profile outreach program, bringing internationally renowned artists, writers, activists, entertainers, philosophers, politicians and businesspeople to the city for on-campus events and free public presentations. For many locals, attending WPI presentations is their primary — perhaps their only — connection to the college. Not surprisingly, the events are usually packed. “Both of us believe in working hard, and we have always been willing to practice that philosophy in our daily lives and in our professions,” says John. “We take great pleasure in contributing to the intellectual and artistic life of our community. We count ourselves enormously lucky to do what we love, and we are grateful that our contributions add value.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Winter Park prides itself on its cultural offerings, so the Sinclairs are extraordinarily important to the community … the Winter Park Institute is the most significant program Rollins offers for the community at large … John and Gail both enrich Winter Park’s cultural life, and they’re both very down-to-earth people.
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Thad Seymour at the Mayflower Retirement Community.
Magician Thaddeus Seymour President Emeritus, Rollins College Of all the highly accomplished presidents in the history of Rollins College, arguably three will be forever synonymous with the institution: Hamilton Holt (1925-1949), Hugh McKean (1951-1969) and Thaddeus Seymour (1978-1990). The towering but down-to-earth Seymour and his delightful wife, Polly, came to Rollins from Indiana’s Wabash College, where he also served as president. (Prior to that, he had been an English professor and later a dean at Dartmouth College.) A witty intellectual who also enjoyed performing magic tricks, the unconventional Seymour was a perfect fit for Rollins. Better still, the community appreciated his humor and lack of pretention. But as president, Seymour was far more than an entertaining raconteur. During his tenure, he led the college’s centennial celebration, rededicated the Walk of Fame, raised funds to construct the Olin Library and the Cornell Social Science Building, reinstated Fox Day (a random holiday announced by the apperance of a small fox statue on the Mills Lawn), and threw himself into various civic activities, strengthening ties between the city and the college. In 1997, the Seymours were named Citizens of the Year by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce. These days, “Thad,” as he prefers to be addressed, volunteers at the Winter Park Public Library’s New Leaf bookstore and, along with former State Attorney Lawson Lamar, co-chaired Preservation Capen, the volunteer group that raised funds to save the historic Capen House from demolition. His walking tours of the Rollins campus and presentations about the college’s history are absolute musts. “Frankly, I never thought of myself as influential, except that I’m pretty tall and have a loud voice,” Seymour says. “It was the role of college president that provided the influence. And I always tried to take that seriously, because the college is, and always has been, such an essential part of the character of our community.”
WHAT THEY SAY: A community treasure… a delightful storyteller … a gentleman with a charitable heart and a formidable mind … he had a vision for what Rollins ought to be and the force of personality to shape it. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
John Rife at East End Market.
Owner, East End Market
Winter Park has been a dining mecca for decades, but John Rife was at the forefront of the farm-to-table movement. A successful commercial real estate developer, the Winter Park resident founded the Winter Park Harvest Festival in 2010. This foodie field day, held each November in Central Park’s West Meadow, celebrates locally sourced dining and features gardening-related seminars and workshops. He also co-founded the Winter Park Urban Farm, on Pine Avenue, where members of the community — especially kids — can learn about growing organic produce in urban areas. But Rife is best known in the wider community for East End Market, a project just outside the city limits. The market, located in a converted church in the Audubon Park Garden District, showcases some of the region’s top food entrepreneurs, tradespeople, artists and chefs. There’s even a bookstore featuring local authors. East End Market was named Best Private District Improvement at last year’s Main Street Awards, sponsored by the City of Orlando. Rife was also selected for the Orlando Sentinel’s Culinary Hall of Fame, and won the Gold Ribbon Award from the Florida Culinary Academy. He has even been tagged as one of Southern Living magazine’s 75 Most Stylish Southerners. “I’m certainly proud of creating East End Market, and the opportunities it’s opened up for local entrepreneurs,” says Rife. “But more importantly, I’m proud to have found success carving my own path in the city where I grew up. I love Winter Park, and to chart my slightly unconventional path took a fair bit of courage and perseverance.”
WHAT THEY SAY: John’s a leader in the farm-to-table movement … a brilliant entrepreneur who has done something really unusual … the Harvest Festival has become one of the city’s signature events.
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congratulations … from Westminster Winter Park, an active senior-living community that has served the citizens of Winter Park since 1965. We offer an active lifestyle enhanced by an emphasis on well-being and lifelong learning. In August, we’ll begin construction on our newest neighborhood, Westminster Baldwin Park, which will feature more than 80 apartment residences with spectacular views in walkable, intergenerational Baldwin Park — and with the same great amenities and services of our Winter Park campus. Westminster Winter Park’s 600-plus residents and more than 300 employees are a key part of the Winter Park community, logging more than 25,000 hours of volunteer service each year. We partner with Rollins College, the University of Central Florida, Winter Park Tech, Winter Park Memorial Hospital, the Winter Park Public Library and so much more. We couldn’t do it without the support of Winter Park’s Most Influential People — you have our gratitude and thanks.
Westminster Winter Park Proud co-sponsor of the reception saluting Winter Park’s Most Influential People Reception at Cocina 214. Westminster Winter Park is part of Westminster Communities of Florida, a fiscally strong, faith-based, not-for-profit organization with a mission of service to more than 6,000 seniors in 19 communities throughout Florida.
1111 South Lakemont Avenue, Winter Park, FL 32792 westminsterretirement.com Locally: (407) 647-4083 Toll-free: (866) 647-4083
Steve Goldman at his Winter Park home.
Steve Goldman, a pioneer in computer-storage technology, sold his Maitland-based company 15 years ago and has since made it his mission to reinvigorate Central Florida’s cultural landscape through hands-on philanthropy. He has served as president of the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and on the board of trustees of United Arts of Central Florida, the Orlando Museum of Art, the Orlando Festival of Orchestras and the Orlando Science Center (where in 2000 he served as interim CEO). He’s a member of the advisory councils of both UCF’s College of Arts and Humanities and its College of Sciences. But perhaps Goldman’s most intriguing project is the National Young Composers Challenge, which he founded and sponsors along with UCF, Rollins College, Full Sail University and the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Goldman, a pianist and composer who holds a degree in physics (honestly, is there anything this man can’t do?), helps to judge the competition, the winners of which are brought to Orlando to hear their works performed, before a live audience, by professional musicians. Committed to advancing both the arts and the sciences, Goldman is also the founder of a nonprofit corporation that creates animated video tutorials for math and science education. “In my experience, what influences people are good ideas and the ability to cut through to the real issues,” he says. “If I’ve actually influenced anyone, hopefully it was because I occasionally had a good idea and was able to cut through some of the baloney.”
WHAT THEY SAY: The man is a genius; I am in awe of his intellect … Steve is an artist and a scientist, and is willing to put his money and creativity on the line to help advance both … there’s nobody else like him in Orlando, or anywhere else, that I know of.
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Jeffery G. Eisenbarth at the Alfond Inn.
Financier Jeffery G. Eisenbarth Vice President for Business and Finance and Treasurer, Rollins College
Rollins College and Winter Park are forever bound, geographically, historically and financially. The financial part is of particular interest to Eisenbarth, who came to Rollins in 2008. He’s the soft-spoken but seriously savvy mastermind who orchestrates the college’s various investments and real estate ventures, including the highly acclaimed Alfond Inn, a 112-room boutique hotel on New England Avenue. But that’s not all. Rollins holds a $100 million real estate portfolio, which generates $5.5 million per year in rent. And when buying strategically located properties, it pays cash. In addition, despite ill-informed grumbling to the contrary, it also pays property taxes — to the tune of about $1 million per year (31 of 38 properties bought by the college since 1989 have remained on the tax rolls). But the Alfond was a monumental undertaking, even for Rollins. So Eisenbarth and the college’s board of trustees had to get creative, persuading the Harold Alfond Foundation to kick-start the project with a $12.5 million donation. The Alfond, which opened in 2013, now generates about $3 million annually in net revenue, all of which is directed to the Harold Alfond Scholarship Fund. That arrangement will continue for the next 25 years, or until the endowment reaches $50 million. Also during Eisenbarth’s tenure, more than $80 million has been spent on campus improvements, creating one of the most beautiful collegiate settings in the country. In 2014, Eisenbarth won an Orlando Business Journal “C-Level Award” as top chief financial officer in the nonprofit category. Says Eisenbarth: “I wouldn’t describe myself as influential, but what has worked well for me over the years is being creative, being a problem-solver and working collaboratively.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Jeff is the most senior administrator at Rollins, and all major decisions go through him … he’s the college’s point man with the city, and is enormously influential in that arena … because of his tenure and his successes, he has the ear of the college’s powerful board of trustees. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W IN T ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Patricia A. Maddox at the Winter Park Health Foundation.
Caregiver Patricia A. Maddox President and CEO, Winter Park Health Foundation
The Winter Park Health Foundation can trace its beginnings back more than 50 years, when it was a subsidiary of the newly formed Winter Park Memorial Hospital. Since 1994, however, it has been a private, not-for-profit organization supporting programs to improve the health of Winter Park, Maitland and Eatonville residents — particularly the young and the old. Perhaps the foundation’s best-known initiative (among many) is the Coordinated Youth Initiative, which provides licensed nurses and mental-health counselors to Maitland and Winter Park public schools, and operates health centers at Winter Park High School and Glenridge Middle School. Maddox, formerly executive director of Medical School Alumni Affairs and Development at Duke University, came to the Winter Park Health Foundation 21 years ago. During her tenure, the foundation has invested more than $89 million in health-related programs, research and education. Maddox also serves on the board of directors of the Heart of Florida United Way, the Metro YMCA, the Mayflower Retirement Community and Florida Hospital. In addition, she’s a member of the Orange County Chairman’s Healthcare Roundtable. “Throughout my life, I’ve been a big believer in the importance of engagement and collaboration,” says Maddox. “The best work gets done when a group of bright, passionate people work together. I try to surround myself with people who know what they’re doing, and then let them do it. I firmly believe that any success I may have couldn’t have happened without the help of others. I’m privileged to work with a superb staff in a spectacular community.”
WHAT THEY SAY: People think of Winter Park as affluent, and it is, but the foundation serves a population that often gets overlooked, especially in places like Winter Park … Patty has a real passion for her work, and the community is a better place for her being here … she has a great ability to get movers and shakers behind what the foundation is doing.
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dedicated motivator inspirational engaged
The qualities of a great leader are easy to recognize. The ability to effect change and motivate others to attain a shared vision is sometimes more complex. This leader’s passion for bringing people and organizations together for the common good facilitates the creation of innovative solutions that help people help themselves. We are proud that our President and CEO, David Odahowski, has been recognized as one of Winter Park Magazine’s most influential people. With 25 years of thoughtful guidance and keen insight on how the Foundation can make our hometown—and beyond—a better place, we’re honored to call him our President. The Board of Directors and staff thank you, David, for showing us all how to care about the community we serve.
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Anne Mooney at Winter Park City Hall.
Anne Mooney Editor, Winter Park Voice
Tom Childers started the Winter Park Voice three years ago with a desktop computer and a borrowed video camera. He described his online effort, which was funded by a consortium of locals that he steadfastly refused to name, as “a policy and issues news magazine.” Childers quickly became a fixture around City Hall, videotaping meetings and emailing lively commentaries about local issues under the Voice banner. Some were pleased that city government was under such constant scrutiny, especially with cutbacks at the Orlando Sentinel; others complained that the Voice had a “no-change” agenda that was reflected in biased coverage. Either way, it got people talking. When Childers left Winter Park for a job opportunity in California last year, he turned over the Voice to one of his contributing writers, Anne Mooney, who has picked up where her former boss left off. Mooney began her career in New York as a line editor for the Crown Publishing Group and later for Simon & Schuster. In Winter Park since 2005, Mooney worked for a time as a personal chef and food writer before joining the Voice. “Winter Park is a beautiful place to live and work,” says Mooney. “Shenanigans at our City Hall are neither worse nor better than they are anywhere else — but it is City Hall, after all.” Although she’s immersed in local politics, Mooney insists that “my hair does not catch on fire.” That’s her typically colorful way of saying that she maintains her composure “in the face of the most extraordinary comment, situation or behavior.” Mooney adds that she’d like her legacy to be “furnishing a freshly washed window through which the reader could clearly see the machinery in City Hall as it goes round and round.” And no, we don’t know who funds the Voice, either. It’s a for-profit corporation, and is not obligated to reveal its donors. However, Mooney says contributors to her low-overhead operation consist of a cross section of locals giving small amounts.
WHAT THEY SAY: If you think the written coverage is biased, then watch the videos and make up your own mind … Anne’s writing is fun to read … the Voice is rabble rousing, but it’s interesting.
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Rebecca Wilson at Dinky Dock.
Advocate Rebecca “Becky” Wilson
Partner/Shareholder, Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, P.A. Arguably the No. 1 land-use attorney in Central Florida, Wilson frequently represents developers before the Winter Park City Commission. So it’s a testament to Wilson’s effectiveness that some locals questioned her appointment to the Visioning Steering Committee, citing her participation as evidence that development interests are overrepresented. (Her appointment was upheld by a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Carolyn Cooper dissenting.) Although she’s from Alabama (she graduated from the University of Alabama School of Law) and can play the Southern charm card when needed, her effectiveness as an advocate comes more from depth of knowledge and relentless preparation. Among Wilson’s clients are the Alfond Inn, CNL Commercial Real Estate and Casto Lifestyle Properties, the Columbus, Ohio-based developer that built the controversial Paseo at Winter Park Village apartment complex on Canton Avenue and Denning Drive. To some residents, the project became emblematic of the kind of high-density development they don’t want. However, Wilson’s argument — that the developers had vested rights and could have chosen to build a much larger project — prevailed, and a modified plan was approved in 2012. Wilson’s resumé lists an array of professional honors, and her civic involvement includes chairing the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce board of directors. She’s also a graduate of the chamber’s Leadership Winter Park program and chair of the board of advisers of the Hamilton Holt School, Rollins College’s evening program. Wilson moved to Central Florida in 2002, and quickly started acting like a native. “I didn’t know anyone,” she says. “I tried to get involved in as many local organizations as possible in order to understand the community’s needs, suggest viable solutions and inspire change. I hope that I leave a legacy of civility, both professionally and personally.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Highly regarded for her intellect
and knowledge of the law … she has access to all the city government movers and shakers … the go-to land-use attorney … if I were a developer, I would hire Becky. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Debbie Komanski at the Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens.
Believer Debbie Komanski
Executive Director, Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens A native Winter Parker, Komanski has, since 2004, run one of the city’s most prized arts institutions. But in 2013, when the historic Capen House was on the verge of being bulldozed, she marshalled an army of volunteers dubbed Preservation Capen and shepherded an expensive (and audacious) twoyear effort to divide the circa-1880s Victorian structure in half, float it across Lake Maitland on a barge and reassemble it in the museum’s East Gardens, adjacent to the Polasek house. That heroic effort alone could have landed Komanski a place on the Most Influential list. But she’s an across-theboard civic dynamo. She’s a past recipient of the President’s Award and the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award from UCF, as well as the Jefferson Award for Lifetime Excellence in Public Service and the Distinguished Community Service of the Year Award from the Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce. Over the span of 30-plus years, she has served as president of the UCF Alumni Association, the UCF Town and Gown Council and the Volunteer Center of Central Florida as well as the Winter Park Rotary Club. Perhaps most importantly, during Komanski’s tenure at the Polasek, the facility has been revitalized into a center for community education, inspiration and creativity.
WHAT THEY SAY: Debbie is sweet and compassion-
ate, but when something needs to get done, she gets it done … to call her persistent is an understatement … a lot of people were responsible for the Capen House move, but it wouldn’t have happened without Debbie … nobody loves Winter Park more than Debbie Komanski.
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Carolyn Cooper at Central Park.
Gadfly Carolyn Cooper
City Commissioner, City of Winter Park Cooper was first elected to the City Commission in 2010 on a slow-growth platform, garnering just 51 percent of the vote against David Lamm, chair of the city’s Planning & Zoning Board and a well-connected commercial real-estate developer. Her squeaker of a victory was, at the time, regarded as an upset. But in 2013, after a tumultuous term in which she often ruffled the feathers of her fellow commissioners, Cooper was re-elected without opposition. (A would-be candidate filed after the deadline, sued to be placed on the ballot, then dropped his challenge.) Cooper certainly brought impressive credentials to the office, having worked for the Department of the Air Force as a civilian financial manager and project manager, and later as director of contracts for Martin Marietta Data Systems, where she negotiated multi-million dollar deals. Yet, her inclusion on this list — like Cooper herself — was controversial. Is she really influential? After all, she often finds herself on the losing end of 3-2 or even 4-1 votes, particularly regarding issues related to land use. But the passionate support she engenders among a large faction of Winter Parkers, many of whom seem to feel that she is truly their voice in city government, made it impossible to leave her out. Part of Cooper’s popularity stems from her unpretentious manner and her eagerness to communicate with constituents. Her casually chatty e-newsletter, Cooper’s Perspective, has drawn the ire of some other commissioners because, they say, it needlessly riles readers and doesn’t always accurately reflect the nuances of various issues. “When I was first elected to serve the people of Winter Park, I did not check my First Amendment rights at the door,” she said at a 2012 meeting. Adds Cooper: “I hope to be remembered as the commissioner whose only special interest was the citizens and businesses of Winter Park.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Every local elected body needs someone like Carolyn to challenge assumptions, even if she isn’t always right … I think she speaks for a vocal minority, but it’s important to have her involved … nobody controls Carolyn … she only cares about the citizens of Winter Park.
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Patrick Chapin and daughter Sarah in Central Park.
President and CEO, Winter Park Chamber of Commerce
The Winter Park Chamber of Commerce is clearly on the upswing, thanks in part to the energetic leadership of Patrick Chapin. The organization has more than 1,000 corporate members, and its Lyman Avenue headquarters is bustling. There are workshops, seminars and networking events, including Business After Hours, Winter Park Executive Women and Good Morning Winter Park. There are educational programs, including the Economic Update Breakfast, the Political Update Breakfast and the State of the City Luncheon. And there are high-profile annual celebrations, including the Hannibal Square Wine Tasting, the Taste of Winter Park, the Autumn Art Festival and the Christmas Parade. Orchestrating it all is Chapin, who has clearly inherited some powerful political instincts from his mother, Linda, who was the first chairman of the Orange County Commission (the position is now called county mayor). Chapin, who joined the chamber in 2009, is both a booster and a bridge-builder. He says one of the proudest moments of his tenure was being asked to host the Peacock Ball, an annual fundraiser held by the Winter Park History Museum (the chamber and the museum had, at times, seemed at odds.) Although Chapin doesn’t describe himself as an “extreme athlete,” he is an ultra-marathoner and a four-time Ironman. He even climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and ran the Grand Canyon rim to rim in honor of his niece Blair, who suffers from Sanfilippo syndrome, a rare enzyme deficiency that causes developmental problems and results in death, usually before age 20. Whenever he completes an adventure, he unfurls a “courage” banner for Blair, whose father, Roger Chapin, is executive vice president for public affairs at Mears Transportation Group. He also constantly promotes a website, theblairbanner.org, to help raise awareness of the disease. “Ultimately, in order to have any influence, it’s important to build trust,” Chapin says. “I’m fortunate that the chamber, as an important civic institution, has earned the community’s trust, which allows me to have a seat at the table as decisions are made. I take this responsibility very seriously.”
WHAT THEY SAY:
Patrick is the face of the business community … the chamber has become an organization to be taken seriously
under his leadership.
S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W IN T ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Linda Kulmann and Susan Skolfield at the Winter Park History Museum.
Past President, Winter Park History Museum Board of Directors
Susan Skolfield Executive Director, Winter Park History Museum
For a city proud of its past, Winter Park has at times seemed remarkably careless about trying to preserve it. The Winter Park Historical Association wasn’t formed until 1974, and the Winter Park History Museum, located in the old railroad depot on New England Avenue, didn’t open until 1993. By 2010, when Linda Kulmann became president of the museum’s board of directors, attendance was down, donations were drying up and displays were becoming stale. Kulmann, who for 20 years was director of development for BETA Center, wanted a fresh start. To get it, she cajoled another board member, Susan Skolfield, into taking the helm as executive director. The duo shared a vision of making local history more interactive and accessible and, according to Kulmann, they “begged, borrowed and pushed” to renovate the museum’s musty space. Skolfield, who was raised in Winter Park but lived in Chicago during her 20-year career as a flight attendant, had returned home in 2005 to care for aging parents. In 2008, she single-handedly opened a Winter Park field office for the Obama campaign — an operation so effective that she garnered national attention, including a story in the New York Times, which lauded Skolfield’s ebullient personality and organizational skill. The first exhibit in the rehabilitated museum was Fine Feathers: How the Peacock Came to Winter Park. The current exhibit, Whistle in the Distance: The Trains of Winter Park, features professionally colorized photographs from the 1880s, blown up to the size of wall murals, and a short film about a Victorian-era couple leaving Boston by train for a new life in this “bright New England town in Central Florida.” Today, the museum attracts about 14,000 visitors each year and sponsors an array of programs and events, some of them collaborations with other organizations. Kulmann remains on the board, and works part-time as an archivist, fundraiser and exhibit planner. The museum’s annual budget? Less than $150,000, about half of which is funded by the city.
WHAT THEY SAY: Linda and Susan are a perfect example of two people accomplishing something together that neither could have done alone … they get people excited about history … it’s amazing what they accomplish with such a small budget.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
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Lambrine Macejewski at Cocina 214.
Lambrine Macejewski Partner/Co-Founder, Cocina 214
Downtown Winter Park has always been charming. But longtime residents remember when it was also, well, sleepy. Today’s Park Avenue, however, is crackling with energy, thanks in large part to a new breed of entrepreneur exemplified by Macejewski, a native Texan who opened Cocina 214 (“Cocina” is the Spanish word for “kitchen” and “214” is the Dallas area code) on Welbourne Avenue. In the ensuing four years, the popular Mexican eatery has become as well known for its creative promotions — don’t miss the hilarious “Running of the Chihuahuas” on Cinco de Mayo — as for its deliciously authentic food, which has won just about every “best of” accolade that local media outlets can bestow. Macejewski has quickly made a name for herself in the business community as well. As 2014 president of the Park Avenue Merchants Association, she (along with Daniel Butts, chief operating officer of Battaglia Group Management, and Frank Hamner, a local attorney), spent weeks crafting an ordinance, ultimately approved by city commissioners, that bans fast-food chain restaurants from Park Avenue (BurgerFi and Panera Bread were grandfathered in). She also led the charge for improvements to Welbourne Avenue, which included drainage, bricking, sidewalk repair and decorative lighting. Macejewski is a past member of the board of directors of the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce and a current board member of the Winter Park History Museum. And she’s a graduate of the chamber’s Leadership Winter Park program. “I’m a take-action kind of person,” Macejewski says. “I don’t just talk about it. I do it, regardless of how long it takes to finish.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Lambrine is especially bright and willing to build consensus … I think she’ll take a more visible and possibly a political role in Winter Park … she started from scratch and now has a successful business that employees 60 people – she’s doing plenty of things right.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
Harold Ward III at the Morse Museum of American Art.
Harold Ward III
Attorney, Winderweedle, Haines, Ward & Woodman, P.A. The formidable Ward is among the last of a small group of community leaders who can trace their local lineages all the way back to the founding of Winter Park. An attorney who specializes in estate planning and trust administration, Ward’s best-known clients are the Charles Hosmer Morse Foundation, which owns the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, and the Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation, which was founded for “recognition of religious, charitable, scientific, literary or educational purposes, and to promote the welfare of mankind.” Now, bear with us for a moment. Elizabeth was the daughter of Charles, although both foundations were begun by her daughter, Jeanette Genius McKean, who also founded the museum, which was directed by her husband, Hugh, until his death in 1995. Sure, it’s confusing. But Ward is one of the few people whose knowledge of Winter Park history is so thorough, and his connections so deep, that he can cogently explain all the relationships between the founding families and their offspring. In fact, Ward’s grandfather, Harold A. Ward Sr., represented the local business interests of Morse, who in 1904 bought roughly half of the property in the city from the failing Winter Park Company. The Chicago-based industrialist then hired Ward Sr. to run the Winter Park Company’s successor, the similarly named Winter Park Land Company. Ward III, who earned his law degree from the University of Chicago and clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black, has carried on the family tradition of civic involvement. He’s a four-time chair of the Rollins College board of trustees, and has been awarded the college’s coveted Declaration of Honor. He has also chaired the Winter Park Rotary Club and has served on the boards of Winter Park Memorial Hospital, the United Way and the American Heart Association. In 1971 and 1972, he became the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce’s only two-term president. And in 1999, he received the chamber’s Citizen of the Year award. Ward is especially proud of his work structuring the Morse and Genius foundations, “to make possible the wonderful contributions those foundations have made to the City of Winter Park, and Florida.” He adds: “As a result of the McKeans’ generosity, we have in Winter Park a world-class museum, a building to house its unparalleled art collection and endowment funds to support its operation.”
WHAT THEY SAY: The paternal monarch of the Charles
Hosmer Morse Foundation and the Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation … Mr. Ward has enormous power … he shows no signs of slowing down, but I’m not sure who the heir apparent would be. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Fr. Richard Walsh at St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church.
Shepherd Fr. Richard Walsh
Pastor, St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church More than 3,800 families — including many of Winter Park’s leading citizens — look to Fr. Richard Walsh for spiritual guidance. That’s the very definition of influential. Now marking 30 years as pastor of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, Fr. Walsh is both respected and beloved throughout the region. Admirers are amazed by his ability to oversee a massive organization and supervise multiple ministries while still finding the time to counsel (and console) individual parishioners during personal trials. In many ways an old-school Irish priest — think Pat O’Brien in Angels With Dirty Faces — Fr. Walsh was born in Collinstown, County Westmeath. He attended All Hallows College Seminary in Dublin and holds two master’s degrees, one in religious education from Loyola University and one in theology from Notre Dame Seminary, both in New Orleans. In addition to his pastoral responsibilities, Fr. Walsh is vicar general of the Diocese of Orlando, encompassing 92 parishes serving more than 400,000 Roman Catholics. He was also a founding member of the Catholic Foundation of Central Florida, the fundraising and development arm of the sprawling diocese. The church’s outreach programs, particularly under the broad umbrella of social justice, are numerous. “I grew up in humble surroundings, and I believe it was a major contributor to who I am today,” says Fr. Walsh. “I’m open and comfortable with people of different age groups, different strata and different cultures. I believe in the innate goodness of people, and I endeavor to affirm and encourage them to develop their God-given gifts and talents.”
WHAT THEY SAY: A fine, caring and honorable man …
by far the longest-serving pastor of any church in this community … he would love to not have any administrative duties so he could just help parishioners … he continues to be a wonderful leader of one of wealthiest parishes in the diocese, but serves all without concern to their bank account.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
David Odahowski at his office, alongside portraits of Archibald and Edyth Bush.
Steward David Odahowski
President and CEO, Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation “Make Central Florida a better place for all of its citizens,” insisted Edyth Bush. A colorful actress-turned-philanthropist who married 3M executive Archibald Bush in 1919, when the company was struggling, she moved permanently from St. Paul, Minn., to Winter Park following his death in 1966. By then, the couple was said to be worth more than $200 million. Edyth Bush died in 1972, and her foundation was established in 1973. For the past 25 years, Odahowski has carried out her mandate, heading one of the region’s most high-profile grantmakers and scrupulously overseeing distribution of more than $3 million annually. (At least $105 million has been given cumulatively, to 767 different organizations.) The foundation gravitates toward hands-on projects that “help people help themselves.” In 2014, it made contributions ranging from $500 for various event sponsorships to $200,000 for Maitland-based New Hope for Kids. Odahowski, who earned a law degree from Hamline University School of Law (located, ironically, in St. Paul), came to Winter Park from Minneapolis, where he was executive director of another private philanthropic organization. He’s also an adviser to the Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership Center at Rollins College, a member of the executive committee of the Donors Forum of Central Florida and a member of the advisory board of Nemours Children’s Hospital. During his tenure at the foundation, the Rollins relationship has been strengthened by the establishment of the Bush Executive Center at the Crummer Graduate School of Business, the Archibald Granville Bush Science Center and the Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership Center. “I’m always asking about the highest and best needs of the people with whom I meet,” says Odahowski. “My role is that of a fiduciary of the philanthropic legacy of Edyth Bush. It’s not my foundation, nor my money, nor my priorities. I’m here to prepare the next generation of board and staff to carry the torch and burn a brighter flame of servant leadership for the future.”
WHAT THEY SAY: A trusted, thoughtful leader … a careful steward of the foundation’s money … the model of what a foundation director ought to be.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
Mary Daniels at the Hannibal Square Heritage Center.
Retired, Volunteer Docent, Hannibal Square Heritage Center
Winter Park’s image is shaped by its eclectic shops, fine dining and beautiful homes. But the traditionally African-American west side — designated as a neighborhood for black families by the city’s founders in the 1880s — still consists primarily of modest single-family homes. Although Hannibal Square has been redeveloped into a lively dining and retail district to rival Park Avenue, residents of the surrounding residential area routinely protest efforts to implement zoning changes that would allow construction of pricey multifamily projects. Daniels is often at the forefront of those heated City Hall confrontations, becoming the face and voice of the west side to many locals. A retired product administrator, Daniels can usually be found working as a docent at the Hannibal Square Heritage Center, where she also serves on the program advisory committee. In addition, she’s a member of the board of directors of the Hannibal Square Community Land Trust and chairs the board of the Welbourne Avenue Nursery & Kindergarten. She’s a past chair of the Canton Park Redevelopment Committee and a past member of the City of Winter Park Planning & Zoning Board. Daniels recently won the Community Service Award from the Winter Park chapter of the Kappa Alpha Psi Alumni Association, which noted that her efforts have “sustained and elevated” Winter Park’s reputation as a cultural center, and have “exposed all sectors of the community to the richness of the historic African-American experience, especially in the Winter Park vicinity.” Says Daniels: “My sense of family and community, developed from my Christian upbringing, are my strongest personal attributes. These attributes have allowed me to serve and lead, to speak out and seek remedy for issues that could adversely affect my community and city, including injustice or disenfranchisement.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Mary exemplifies the west side to many people … she is a formidable adversary when she feels a wrong is being done … she is very effective when addressing the City Commission. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Betsy Rogers Owens at Casa Feliz.
Betsy Rogers Owens
Executive Director, Friends of Casa Feliz
If the City of Winter Park ends up adopting a meaningful historic preservation ordinance, it will be in large part because the outspoken Owens rallied support and helped shape an approach that’s both effective and politically palatable. Certainly, the Winter Park native has the proper pedigree. She’s the granddaughter of iconic architect James Gamble Rogers II (1901-1990), whose elegant homes helped define the city as a center for gracious living. And she heads the organization that manages the Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum, an Andalusian-style masonry farmhouse designed by her grandfather in the 1930s. The home was about to be demolished in 2001 before the community rallied and raised funds to physically move the 750-ton behemoth to city property and restore it to its original rustic grandeur. (The process would be repeated 13 years later with the Capen House.) Prior to coming to Casa Feliz in 2004, Owens was managing director of the West Virginia Business Roundtable, an association of large-company chief executive officers. Since returning to her hometown, Owens has earned a reputation as a crusader for historic preservation, and her popular blog, Preservation Winter Park, keeps the issue front and center. In addition, Owens burnishes her grandfather’s legacy through the James Gamble Rogers II Colloquium on Historic Preservation, sponsored by the Friends of Casa Feliz. “I’m willing to call a spade a spade,” says Owens, who also sings in the Bach Festival Choir. “But I do so in a thoughtful and considered way. I don’t have any difficulty saying something that I know will be unpopular if it’s a deeply held conviction.”
WHAT THEY SAY: A smart and vocal advocate for historic preservation, Betsy will continue to represent an important – and vocal – group of Winter Park residents … Betsy is fighting the good fight … I disagree with her approach, but admire her tenacity.
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
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Dan Bellows at Hannibal Square.
Fighter Dan Bellows
President, Sydgan Corp. Can we agree on this much? No single individual has ever orchestrated a more striking local neighborhood redevelopment project than Bellows has in Hannibal Square. The sometimes-combative Winter Park native may not be the most personally polished entrepreneur in the city. But a more timid (and tactful) soul could never have created a trendy shopping and dining destination from a blighted commercial strip dotted by rooming houses and anchored by a bar where the tables had to be nailed to the floor so they wouldn’t be used as weapons. When Bellows began buying and renovating Hannibal Square properties in the early 1990s, it was difficult to find anyone who thought it was a good idea. Even some west side residents who conceded that the area had become downright dangerous were suspicious of — and sometimes hostile to — the brash young builder, whose bull-in-a-china-shop personality sometimes infuriated locals on both sides of the tracks. Yet, against all odds, Hannibal Square has today taken its place alongside Park Avenue as a signature business district. And Bellows isn’t done yet. He continues to develop property on the west side, although he encounters opposition when his high-density projects stray into surrounding residential neighborhoods. More recently, he assembled a ragtag bunch of small properties at the corner of U.S. Highway 17-92 and Lee Road and launched a mixed-use project called Ravaudage. That one has been slower to take shape, and last year Bellows announced that he was offering the entire 73-acre site for sale. Some real estate pros reckoned that it could fetch $187 million or more. (Unicorp National Developments has already purchased a parcel, and is building an 18,000-square-foot, two-story project that will include a Tony Roma’s Steakhouse.) Still, regardless of what happens at Ravaudage, Bellows lists Hannibal Square as his proudest accomplishment. “I thought, ‘What can I do to make a difference?’” Bellows says. “In my mind, heart and soul — and with blood, sweat and tears — I took on Hannibal Square. I was told it was too much, and would take away all that I had built prior. But Hannibal Square will forever be connected to myself, my family, and friends who stood by my side and believed.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Like him or not, you have to give him credit for making things happen… he’s a hero, not a villain … Dan didn’t have to make that kind of massive investment in Hannibal Square to make money on the property; he risked everything he had because he loves this town and wanted to create a legacy. W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
Patrick Chapin, on your recognition as one
of Winter Park Magazine’s
Most Influential. Your compassion, leadership and dedication are an
inspiration to us all!
CONGRATULATIONS, DAN BELLOWS NamedOneofWinterPark’s‘MostInfluentialPeople.’
Thank you for being such a great leader, father and friend to so many of us. Your influence, persistence, and courage are what inspires us to be part of your team. - Your Family and The Sydgan Corporation Staff W INTE R 2 0 1 5 | W IN T ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
Allan E. Keen at the Kummer-Kilbourne home.
Allan E. Keen
Chairman and CEO, The Keewin Real Property Co.
Keen has developed thousands of acres in Central Florida, but none with more relevance to Winter Parkers than Windsong, a 150-acre community on hallowed ground that was previously part of the peacock-populated Genius Drive Nature Preserve. And none have packed more emotional punch than his meticulous restoration of a single 99-year-old bungalow that virtually everyone expected would be torn down. The Kummer-Kilbourne home, which faces Central Park’s West Meadow, was for several generations the only single-family home within view of the bustling Park Avenue shopping district. In 2011, after years of relentless pressure to sell, the grandchildren of lumberyard owner Gotthilf Oscar Kummer finally found a buyer they trusted in Keen. The major-league dealmaker, who was responsible for quietly assembling the 1,000 acres on which Universal Studios Florida now sits, paid just over $1 million for the modest, 2,500-square-foot cracker classic. He then carefully restored it and relocated his company’s operation to the first floor. Keen, who moved to Winter Park in 1964, has connections and friendships that span decades. A graduate of Rollins College with an MBA from its Crummer Graduate School of Business, he was elected to the Rollins board of trustees in 1989, serving as chairman from 2006 to 2008. He’s also a past chairman of the board of trustees of both Valencia College and the Winter Park Health Foundation. In 2002, he was named Winter Park Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year. Keen attributes his stature as an influencer to “being around a long time, building great relationships and trying to be considerate of others.”
WHAT THEY SAY: Allan’s influence has only increased over the years … an old-school guy who believes that success in business is all about
personal relationships … if the Windsong property had to be developed, we should all be grateful that someone who cares so much about the city is the one who put it together … maybe the best dealmaker in the region.
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
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f course, there are many more influential people in Winter Park than those who appear on Winter Park Magazine’s Most Influential People list. In fact, there are more than enough candidates to fill several issues (using the smallest readable font). In addition to the top selections, our panelists recommended a daunting array of other nominees, some of whom are highly influential now and some of whom could be categorized as up-and-comers. In the clerical realm, there’s Rev. Shawn Garvey, senior pastor at First Congregational Church in Winter Park. Garvey brings a relatable style, a progressive theology and a soothing acoustic guitar to Winter Park’s oldest church, which was among the first in the region to announce that it would perform same-sex marriages. Garvey is also interim dean at Rollins College’s Knowles Memorial Chapel. Several panelists were also intrigued by the work of Randall B. Robertson with GladdeningLight, a not-for-profit spiritual initiative whose mission is “to explore transcendent elements of art through hosted conferences, exhibits and public performances.” The annual GladdeningLight Sympoisum brings internationally known authors, artists and performers to Winter Park for a truly one-of-a-kind weekend exploring the intersection of art and spirituality. Among local elected officials, several panelists expressed optimism about newly minted City Commissioner Greg Seidel, whose self-effacing manner and engineer’s emphasis on the use of quantifiable data may help guide the commissioners toward practical and clear-headed decision-making. Commissioner Sarah Sprinkel, who was recently appointed vice-mayor, is no newcomer but was nonetheless touted as a person to watch. Mayor Steve Leary, whom Sprinkel supported in the March city election, used the vice-mayoral post as a springboard to his current position. Might Sprinkel do the same? She’d be a formidable candidate if she chose to give it a shot. Restaurant owners John Rivers (4 Rivers, The Coop), James and Julie Petrakis, (The Ravenous Pig, Cask & Larder and Swine & Sons Provisions), Michael Schwartz (Pannullo’s), as well as executive chef Brandon McGlammery (Prato and Luma on Park) earned hearty hoorahs for refurbishing Winter Park’s longstanding reputation as a regional dining destination. Doggie Door co-owner Brian Wettstein received raves for his creative events and passion for promoting downtown shopping, while Sarah Grafton DeVoe, a senior financial advisor at family-owned Grafton Wealth Management Group, was mentioned frequently as a promising up-and-comer for her extensive civic involvement. One panelist insisted that DeVoe, whose boosterism even extends to her Twitter handle, “@MissParkAve,” would someday be mayor.
Builders Phil Kean (Phil Kean Design Group), Charlie Clayton (Charles Clayton Construction) and Frank Roark (Frank Roark General Contractor) each found favor — Kean for enlivening the local architectural scene with his sleek, modern designs, and Clayton and Roark for their skill at restoring vintage showplaces (Roark was the contractor in charge of moving and reassembling the Capen House). Uber-involved architect Jeffery Blydenburgh was mentioned numerous times for his ongoing work in helping to help craft a proposed new historic preservation ordinance for the city, and his key role in the resurgence of Mead Botanical Garden, for which he chairs the board of trustees. Retired businessman Pete Weldon, whose blog Winter Park Perspective frequently wades into local politics, was cited as an influential force. Weldon, no stranger to controversy, frequently offers carefully reasoned online defenses and explanations for city actions. Real-estate moguls Scott Hillman (Fannie Hillman & Associates) and Kelly Price (Kelly Price & Company) were singled out for their deep community roots and their substantial civic engagement, both individually and corporately. Harriett Lake, the 91-year-old fashionista philanthropist responsible for Park Avenue Fashion Week, was proffered a tip of the (feathered and sequined) hat for the depth and breadth of her giving, which continues unabated and encompasses just about every charitable organization in the region. Tony and Sonja Nicholson also earned praise for their philanthropy. In 1996, the Nicholsons pledged $2 million to UCF, which is why there’s an impressive building on campus housing the Nicholson School for Communication. The Nicholson Center at Florida Hospital Celebration was also named for the couple, who donated $5 million toward construction. The Nicholsons have both previously served on the UCF board of trustees, while Tony has served as chief of the UCF Development Committee and Sonja has served as a member of the board of directors of the Golden Knights Club. Sonja, by the way, is the owner of RE/MAX Park Avenue in Winter Park. Another philanthropic power couple, Chuck and Margery Pabst Steinmetz, could scarcely be overlooked. They recently donated $12 million to the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts toward construction of what had been known as the Acoustical Theater, now called Steinmetz Hall. Their single gift to the center is $2 million more than the City of Winter Park committed over a 10-year period. Andrea Massey-Farrell, president and chief executive officer of the relatively new Harvey L. Massey Foundation, was lauded for her volunteer initiatives, particularly the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer
Ena Heller, Rev. Shawn Garvey, John Rivers, Shawn Shaffer, and Roy Allen and Heather Alexander are among the other influential people praised by our panelists.
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
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campaign. Massey-Farrell, daughter of pest-control magnate Harvey Massey, is also senior vice president for community relations for Massey Services, the company founded by her father, a long-time local mover and shaker. Speaking of the Masseys, last year another family enterprise, Massey Communications, hired Sam Stark as president and chief executive officer. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because Stark was president and chief executive officer of the Central Florida Sports Commission and chief executive officer of the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce before moving north, where he led the Chicago Sports Commission.
Now back in sunny Winter Park, Stark has picked up where he left off, serving on the board of trustees for both Rollins College and the Winter Park Public Library. He’s also on the advisory board of the Winter Park Parks & Recreation Department. Several panelists remarked that it was almost as though Stark had never left. Attorney Frank Hamner, who’s involved in many civic causes, including historic preservation, also represents the Holler family, major Park Avenue landlords. Hamner, a U.S. Navy veteran who served two tours of duty during the Persian Gulf War, was cited as a formidable influencer — and a
feared litigator — by several panelists. Others mentioned by panelists include Shawn Shaffer, who was named executive director of the Winter Park Public Library in 2013. She’ll likely experience increased visibility in the coming year as the city discusses (and debates) what to do about expanding or relocating the facility. Roy Allen and Heather Alexander, founders of the Winter Park Playhouse, attract hordes of people to the city with their frothy musicals, and are hoping to earn more philanthropic and governmental support for their not-for-profit arts enterprise. Our panelists are pulling for them. The local arts scene continues to benefit immeasurably from the generosity of attorney John Lowndes and his civically active wife, Rita, a pair of Winter Parkers who donated $750,000 in seed money to transform the old Orlando Science Center into the four-theater John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center in Loch Haven Cultural Park. Ena Heller, director of the Cornell Fine Arts Museum on the Rollins campus, has revitalized the low-key repository with fresh traveling exhibitions and all sorts of eclectic works from the museum’s encyclopedic permanent collection. And she has made admission free, at least for now. John Michael Thomas, an enterprising Eagle Scout, clearly won the hearts of our panelists. Now, thanks to John Michael’s efforts, a beautiful bronze peacock fountain has been installed in the Central Park rose garden as a memorial to his friend Elizabeth Buckley, who died at 13 of brain cancer. Since we’re on the subject of young people — in this case, those who influence young people — Matthew Swope, director of choral activities and performing arts chair at Winter Park High School, clearly deserves to take a bow. Hundreds of students participate in chorus, thanks in part to Swope’s commitment and charisma, and are learning such values as teamwork and responsibility. Think the arts are superfluous? Check out any choral event at WPHS and watch these talented teens light up the stage. Jon and Betsey Hughes, co-owners of Track Shack, organize an array of road races — including an annual marathon in conjunction with Walt Disney Word as well as the Winter Park Road Race, a tradition for 38 years — and were at the forefront of the fitness craze when they bought their now-iconic Mills Avenue store in 1983. They’ve even established a not-for-profit foundation that promotes youth fitness. Grant H. Cornwell, the new Rollins president, will be influential by virtue of his position. The panelists, however, decided to give him time to unpack his bags and locate his office before pressuring him to get involved. Because Cornwell was once a philosophy professor, and came from a small liberal arts college not unlike Rollins — the College of Wooster in Wooster, Ohio — expectations are that he will prove to be a popular choice.
Debbie Komanski Linda Kulman
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
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A topiary display of pets and wildlife on Park Avenue, Downtown Winter Park Topiaries will be inside and outside more than a dozen Merchant sponsor businesses. Starts Mid July through September All topiaries are for sale - 100% of sales benefit Winter Park Lost Pets and the Sebastian Haul Fund More than 1000 pets have been reunited through the efforts of WP Lost Pets since 2009. (winterparklostpets.com) More than 1600 Central Florida retired greyhounds have reached their new families supported by funding provided by the Sebastian Haul Fund since 2008. (sebastianhaulfund.org)
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W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | WI N TER 2015
Vision WINTER PARK Vision Winter Park will set the stage to guide the cityâ€™s future. A major focus of the visioning process is to educate the community about the process, why individuals should participate, and how the shared vision affects them.
JOIN THE CONVERSATION Your participation is vital to this process and will be encouraged during all of the visioning phases. Register to participate in person or online in our conversations about how to enhance the process and how you and your neighbors can help make it happen!
JOIN US IN AUGUST Celebrate Winter Park
Thursday, August 20, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The Alfond Inn at Rollins College, 300 E. New England Ave. Find more details and RSVP online at visionwinterpark.org Come hear Peter Kageyama, an internationally-known speaker and author, at our first large community event. Leave inspired, after hearing about what we love about Winter Park, and motivated to move forward with ideas to make it even better!
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Cool Looks for
Summer Styling by Marianne Ilunga Photography by Rafael Tongol
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
This time of year, what better way to spend the day than boating on Lake Maitland and enjoying the beautiful Winter Park Chain of Lakes? Just make sure your look is as cool as the weather is hot. Kennedy (Model Muse), Taylor (CGM Miami) and Ariana (Model Muse) showed off some sassy summer looks on a recent June afternoon at a private lakefront home. Left to right: Kennedy wears Chloe gold and cream frame sunglasses ($346), a Becca White crochet bikini bottom ($48), a Becca White crochet triangle bikini top ($64), and a J. Valdi white short swim coverup ($56), all from Bloomingdales, the Mall at Millenia. Ariana wears a Trina Turk bright print one-piece swimsuit ($148), and an August Hat Company white straw hat ($42), both from Bloomingdales, the Mall at Millenia. Taylor wears an Aqua yellow coverup ($58), a Vix black triangle bikini top ($96), and a Vix black bikini bottom with side braid details ($92), all from Bloomingdales, the Mall at Millenia. She also wears Charyli tribal bracelets ($20) from Charyli on Park Avenue.
Top: Ariana wears a Mara Hoffman mixed-print maxi skirt ($234), a Mara Hoffman mixed-print crop-top ($152), a Cusp gold-tone cuff bracelet ($80), a Cusp pearl-detail rhinestone bracelet ($80), an Ancient Greek silver sandal slide ($235), Fendi light pink cat-eye sunglasses ($495), and a Balenciaga pink lavender lightweight tote ($1,835), all from Neiman Marcus, the Mall at Millenia. Bottom: Taylor wears a Parker blue and turquoise maxi-dress ($308), Lisa Freede gold-tone cuff bracelets ($80 each), a Lisa Freede gold-tone ring ($60), and a Sequin agate and pearl multistrand necklace ($158), all from Neiman Marcus, the Mall at Millenia.
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Kennedy wears an Alice and Olivia blue and white strapless jumpsuit ($368), a Tai bracelet with turquoise detail ($80), a Tai Labradorian pinch bracelet ($115), a Tai gold-tone cuff bracelet with turquoise stone ($105), a Lisa Freede gold-tone cuff bracelet ($80), a Fendi white tote with graffiti detail ($1,800), and Alexis Bittar turquoise-drop earrings ($275), all from Neiman Marcus, the Mall at Millenia.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
Left to right: Taylor wears a Trina Turk multiprint twist bandeau bikini top ($76), and Trina Turk multiprint swim coverup pants ($128), both from Bloomingdales, the Mall at Millenia. Kennedy wears a Trina Turk neon abstract print one-piece swimsuit ($140), and carries a Tory Burch bright yellow tote ($245), both from Bloomingdales, the Mall at MilÂlenia. Ariana wears an Echodesign bright pink coverup ($48), an Echodesign blue scarf ($38), and a Nanette Lepore multicolor one-piece swimsuit ($140), all from Bloomingdales. The Mall at MilÂlenia. She also wears Lindsay Phillips jeweled blue flip-flops ($25.95) from Chloe Lane in Winter Park. S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
From left to right: Ariana wears an L Space khaki swim top with crochet detail ($88), and an L Space khaki green bikini bottom with crochet detail ($78), both from Charyli on Park Avenue. Taylor wears a Maaji multicolor bikini crop top ($70), and a Maaji multicolor bikini bottom ($60), both from Charyli on Park Avenue. Kennedy wears Maaji multiprint swim shorts ($66), and a Maaji multiprint Triangle bikini top ($66), both from Charyli on Park Avenue. She also carries a Tory Burch neutral color laser-cut tote ($495) from Bloomingdales, the Mall at Millenia. All hair accessories are the stylist’s own. W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
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S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
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‘That is, in short, I fain would learn The highest sum that I could earn.’
When a Rollins poet sought more dough, did his boss say yes or no? Nathan Starr wanted a raise. He deserved a raise. The popular Rollins College professor, an expert in Arthurian literature, decided that the best way to broach the ticklish subject with Hamilton Holt, the writerly college president, was (for better or worse) to ask in verse. On Dec. 5, 1946, Starr sat down at his manual typewriter and composed the most creative (and literary) financial plea imaginable. Holt was handed the completed poem, entitled An Earnest Petition in Troublous Times, just as he was leaving his office to catch a flight to New York. From the airport, Holt dictated a reply to his assistant, which was relayed to Starr. Did the poetic ploy work? Holt’s response was noncommittal, but proved he could match Starr rhyme for rhyme. A quirky intellectual of the sort Holt loved to recruit for his faculty, Starr held bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from Harvard and a master’s degree from Oxford. (His 1954 book, King Arthur Today: The Arthurian Legend in English and American Literature, remains a classic of its genre.) It’s safe to speculate that Starr eventually got his raise, because he would remain at Rollins for seven more years. When he resigned in 1952 to join the faculty at the University of Florida, President Hugh McKean expressed keen regret, writing that Starr “carried with him that aura of a great teacher.” And, clearly, a clever negotiator. — Dr. Jack C. Lane Right: Starr's original rhyming request for a raise, followed by Holt's pithy but equally creative response.
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUMM ER 2015
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Alexia and Rhys Gawlak are the day-to-day managers of Swine & Sons. Their parnters are James and Julie Petrakis, the culinary power couple behind the region’s first gastropub, The Ravenous Pig.
It’s Porcine, But Precious. This brand-new eatery elevates take-out food to a new level. But that’s no surprise, considering the team behind Swine & Sons Provisions. By Rona Gindin Photographs by Rafael Tongol
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
his is how Swine & Sons began. (Hint: It’s run by People Who Get Things Done.) Rhys Gawlak, pointing toward a former mobilephone repair shop: “James, what do you think? Maybe we can do a storefront.” James Petrakis, nodding agreement: “Yeah. Let’s do a storefront.” A quick six months later, that humble Fairbanks Avenue retail space has been transformed into a countrified-yet-chic grocery called Swine & Sons Provisions. The purveyor sells “honest food,” packaged to go, for those seeking more than a chain-made sub and less than a fullservice restaurant meal. “Honest food” is the be-all of Alexia Gawlack, who, with her husband, Rhys, runs the operation. Behind them and beside them (and fronting them) are the establishment’s owners, James and Julie Petrakis, the culinary power couple behind the Orlando area’s first gastropub, the Ravenous Pig. The Petrakises are also the wunderkinds who turned a ridiculously difficult-to-reach building into the bustling Cask & Larder, which now shares a parking lot with Swine & Sons. The site was once occupied by the venerable Le Cordon Bleu and Harper’s Tavern before becoming an O’Boys Bar-B-Q for a time. Swine & Sons sells sandwiches, charcuteries, ready-togrill meats, desserts and condiments. Well, mostly. Some regulars stop in just for a pint of house-churned chocolate ice cream, or a growler of IPA brewed across the way at Cask & Larder. Each evening between 5 and 7 p.m., yet more fans stop by to pick up the night’s single grab-and-go, full-dinner option. Tuesday’s meal might be barbecue brisket meatloaf with brown-butter-whipped potatoes, charred broccoli and a dinner roll, while Wednesday’s may include fried chicken with macaroni and cheese, marinated tomatoes, hot honey and cornbread. The price is always $15. From the slightly spicy caramel corn to the chocolatepeanut butter whoopee pies, from the ribeye hot dogs to the crab cake lunch special, that honest food raison d’être prevails. Swine & Sons is meant to be a place to buy the types of scratch-made, Southern-influenced foods served in the Ravenous Pig and Cask & Larder dining rooms — but without the full-blown table-service element. Swine & Sons does have casual seating areas for those who’d like to gobble down their goodies before returning to the car. “We make our foods out of real ingredients,” says Alexia. “There’s so much junky-junk out there that I think providing people access to real food is a community service.” Take the signature cheese biscuits, which are sold both ready-to-eat and frozen in six-packs. An ambitious home-
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W inter Park 400 South Orlando Avenue • 407-644-7770 Reservations online at www.roccositaliangrille.com S U MME R 2 0 1 5 | W INT ER PARK MAGAZ IN E
The pastrami sandwich on marble rye with smoked sauerkraut takes 12 days to make, if you count preparation of the components. The country pork terrine (right) includes pork liver and is highlighted by pistachios, dried cherries and an assortment of spices.
maker might forgo the poppin’ fresh dough and even the Bisquick, choosing to sift, mix and bake with all-natural ingredients. At Swine & Sons, the biscuits are so much more involved that they make a statement. “They’re a good representation of how we’re trying to show the mash-up of styles of Ravenous and Cask,” Rhys says. “Cask’s biscuits are traditional, made with White Lily flour and shortening. At Ravenous, they’re buttery and layered with rich gruyere. The Swine & Sons version has the White Lily flour, both butter and shortening, plus white cheddar and shaved Parmesan as well as chives and a dash of cayenne pepper.” And remember, these are just humble biscuits. So you can only imagine the complexities involved in making a Swine-style pastrami sandwich. “The sandwich you’re eating started 12
W I N T E R P A R K M A GAZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
days before you got it,” Rhys says. Here’s an abbreviated version of the process: “We trim the brisket, then brine it for 10 days in salt, sugar, black pepper, coriander, thyme, bay leaf, garlics and a touch of orange zest to give it that little Florida twist. We let it sit for 12 hours to dry under refrigeration with a fan on it. Then we rub on more spices and another touch of orange zest. We smoke it for four to five hours over hickory, then let it cool for 12 hours.” And they’re not done yet. “Within those 12 days, we’ve started our mustard, which takes four days to make. We hydrate mustard seeds for three days, then purée them with vinegar, salt, sugar and coriander, then let that sit overnight to mellow.” So, how about the sauerkraut? If you’ve read this far, you know it doesn’t come packaged in
plastic. “That takes three or four days, too. We shred the cabbage, salt it and leave it out to ferment for three days. We give it a light smoke as well, which adds a twist.” Only then will the staff spread mustard on both sides of the marble rye bread (which comes from Groveland’s Pane D’Or bakery), add Swiss cheese, pastrami and sauerkraut and cut the lunch staple in half. “That’s why our sandwiches are a little higher priced,” Rhys explains, noting that a typical sandwich shop would charge less than $12 for a more run-of-the-mill version. Trust us; this deceptively simple masterpiece is worth the extra few bucks. Since so many Winter Park homes have outdoor kitchens, Swine & Sons stocks meats ready to sear on your grill. On a recent afternoon, the
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SALUTE TO BUSINESS WINTER PARK, FLA
July 23, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. Rachel D. Murrah Civic Center The Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the City of Winter Park, will honor the legacy and longevity of local businesses. This celebration will recognize over 250 companies that have been part of our community for 25 years or more. For details and reservations visit winterpark.org or call 407-644-8281.
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“Best Hotel Restaurant” by the Orlando Sentinel Inspired by Summer: Local Cocktails and New Chef Creations, including Roasted Corn and Crab Soup, Lamb and Olive Oil Poached Snapper
The interior of Swine & Sons has a rustic, homey feel, and there’s limited seating inside. Mostly, though, patrons pick up carry-out meals to enjoy at home.
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W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | SUM M ER 2015
display case featured marinated chickens and smoked lamb ribs among its options. Over the years, Rhys has made his name as an artisan sausage-maker. His products have typically been served only in restaurants on charcuterie platters. But now they’re available retail, as is his country pork terrine. Visitors can see his salumi — such as sopressata and duck hams, plus others from small producers — curing through a window in a small walk-in cooler. Next up is an expanded retail line. Alexia talks about a frozen cookie-dough roll, which would be Swine’s take on those Nestlé slice-and-bake products sold at Publix. Rhys gets animated thinking up compound butters; maybe he’ll start toying with wild mushroom or truffle spreads. “Piggybacking” off the restaurants, Rhys explains, will make these products affordable for customers and profitable for Swine & Sons. “For just the store, it would be too expensive to order a pound of morels,” he adds. “But if I’m ordering nine pounds, which I’ll use here and at Cask, I’ll pay half the price. I have buying power.” Having the Gawlaks as operating partners seems logical for the Petrakises. Three of the four chefs grew up in Winter Park (Rhys is from Fort Pierce), all four studied at the Culinary Institute
of America, and the quartet’s local careers have overlapped for more than a decade. Alexia worked for Julie at Primo in 2004, then with James at Luma on Park and, later, at The Ravenous Pig. Rhys — who hired Alexia in 1999, when he ran the kitchen of Dexter’s Thornton Park — then worked at Norman’s before reuniting with his former kitchen compadre when Ravenous debuted. Rhys was most recently chef de cuisine at Cask, where he still has a management position. (Alexia also spent five years at the Winter Park Whole Foods and nine months at the Orlando World Marriott’s Siro.) So much of a family are these four that the name Swine & Sons is in part a nod to their tot-size offspring. Since their early days cooking together, both couples have had children — two apiece — and three of those youngsters are, indeed, sons. The daughter, apparently, will have to wait until the next venture. Keeping with the piggish theme of the original Ravenous, and offering gastropub-quality food to enjoy at home, Swine & Sons invites Winter Parkers to enjoy its farm-to-table provisions at home. No junky-junk allowed. 595 W. Fairbanks Ave., Winter Park, 407-636-7601, swineandsons.com
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events art, history, entertainment and more
Taylor-Made Tunes It isn’t often that Winter Parkers are able to enjoy an internationally known singer-songwriter, in concert, without traveling to a venue outside the city. But that’s only one reason why Livingston Taylor’s local gig will be so special. The other reason is, Taylor will be reunited with his guitar-picking pal, Rev. Shawn Garvey, senior pastor at the First Congregational Church of Winter Park, who’ll probably join him for a tune or two. The concert will be held in the church’s historic sanctuary on Saturday, Sept. 19, at 7:30 p.m. Taylor — whose brother James is one of the most successful hitmakers of the ‘70s and ‘80s — has enjoyed a stellar career of his own, notching several Top 40 hits and touring with Linda Ronstadt, Jimmy Buffett and Jethro Tull. Taylor’s most recent album, Last Alaska Moon, features an all-star roster of musicians, including Vince Gill on guitar. Garvey booked Taylor to play at his previous church in Chatham, N.J., and the two have since maintained a strong friendship. Taylor, who also teaches stage performance as a full professor at Berklee College of Music in Boston, is a masterful performer, mixing genre-spanning original songs and standards with humorous stories and insights about life. On Friday, Sept. 18, Taylor will participate in an informal Chapel Chat with Garvey at Rollins College’s Knowles Memorial Chapel. The chat, which is free and open to the public, starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets to the Saturday concert are $35. First Congregational Church is located at 225 S. Interlachen Ave. To purchase tickets, call 407-647-2416. — Randy Noles
W I N T E R PA R K M A G AZI N E | summer 2015
C H AN E L P RAD A GUCCI L O U I S V U I TTO N TI F F ANY & C O .
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EVENTS VISUAL ARTS The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens. Although the 54-year-old museum is dedicated to preserving the works of the famed Czech sculptor, it also stages frequent exhibits from internationally renowned artists working in all mediums. Continuing through Aug. 9 is Shapely Vessels: Gourds From Around the World. The extensive collection dedicated to one of the world’s oldest domesticated plants is on loan from Orlando “gourd guru” Raymond Konann. Regular admission to the museum, which was Polasek’s home from 1949 until his death in 1965, is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, $3 for students and free for children. 633 Osceola Ave. 407-647-6294. polasek.org. Art & History Museums-Maitland. The Maitland Art Center at 231 W. Packwood Ave., one of five museums that anchor the city’s Cultural Corridor, was founded as an art colony in 1937 by visionary American artist and architect André Smith. The center, which offers exhibits and classes, is one of the few surviving examples of Mayan Revival architecture in the Southeast, and earlier this year was named a National Historic Landmark. Summer art classes continue through early August for children, and through late August for adults. Continuing through July 19 is Participation: Classes of 2013-15, an exhibition of work by some of Florida’s top visual and performing artists. From July 21 through Sept. 30, Paper Cuts: André Smith Collages will feature the work of the center’s founder. And from Aug. 1 through Sept. 20, Color Theory will focus on the ways in which artists employ color to alter mood and perception. Regular monthly events include Family Days at the Museum, held the third Saturday of each month at 1 p.m.; Artists’ Critique and Conversation, held the fourth Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m.; and Ladies’ Art Lounge, held the first Friday of each month at 7:30 p.m. Additional components of the complex include the Maitland Historical Museum and the Telephone Museum, both located at 221 W. Packwood Ave. The Historical Museum’s permanent exhibit, Maitland Legacies: Creativity and Innovation, uses archival photographs, artifacts and documents to commemorate the city’s founding families and earliest institutions. Continuing through Aug. 30, Cabinet of Curiosities: Selections from the Permanent Collection, showcases some of the museum’s most unusual artifacts, including a piece of granite etched with ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs. The fourth and fifth components of the complex are the Waterhouse Residence Museum and the Carpentry Shop Museum, both built in the 1880s and located at 820 Lake Lily Drive. 407539-2181. artandhistory.org. Art on the Green. The City of Winter Park and the Public Art Advisory Board have teamed to mount an exhibition of large-scale sculptures in Central Park. The works of seven noted artists with ties to Florida will be featured. The exhibition runs Nov. 1 through March 1 of next year. Begin your tour at the Central Park Rose Garden, located near the intersection of Park and New England avenues, or from anywhere in Central Park. Art on the Green is organized by guest curator Suzanne Delehanty, founding director of the Miami Art Museum (now Perez Art Museum Miami). For more information, visit cityofwinterpark.org. Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum. The stunningly restored Spanish farmhouse-style home was designed by acclaimed architect James Gamble Rogers II and is now a community center and museum. Casa Feliz hosts free public open houses led by trained docents every Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon. On Sundays, in addition to tours of the home, live music is featured in the large downstairs parlor from noon to 3 p.m. The museum will be closed the last two Sundays in July for annual maintenance. 656 N. Park Ave. (adjacent to the Winter Park Country Club golf course). 407-628-8200. casafeliz.us.
W I N T E R PA R K M A GAZI N E | summer 2015
Cornell Fine Arts Museum. Located on the campus of Rollins College, the museum houses one of the oldest and most eclectic collections of fine art in Florida. During the summer, Happy Hour Tours at the Alfond Inn will be held on the first Wednesday of each month (July 1, Aug. 5 and Sept. 2) beginning at 5:30 p.m., and will highlight the boutique hotel’s extensive collection of modern art. There are three exhibits starting Aug. 15 and running through Jan. 3, 2016: Jess Dugan: Every Breath We Drew, featuring the work of the photographer and LGBT activist; Fashionable Portraits in Europe, with a selection of portraits from the 15th to the 19th centuries; and Enduring Documents: Photography from the Permanent Collection, featuring recent acquisitions from such as icons of the genre as Margaret Bourke-White, William Henry Jackson and Matthew Brady. On June 26, Dr. Rangsook Yoon will present a lecture on the Cornell’s recent acquisition of works by the baroque Italian painter, Francesco Solimena. Yoon will also lead a tour of the Fashionable Portraits in Europe exhibit on Aug. 28. The Cornell’s director, Dr. Ena Heller, will present a lecture on “Decoding Religious Art” on Sept. 25. Courtesy of Bessemer Trust, admission remains free throughout 2015. 407-646-2526. cfam.rollins.edu. Crealdé School of Art. Established in 1975, this notfor-profit arts organization offers year-round visual arts classes for all ages taught by more than 40 working artists. There are ongoing exhibits in the William and Alice Jenkins Gallery and the Showalter Hughes Community Gallery. Admission to the galleries is free, although there are fees for art classes. 600 St. Andrews Blvd. 407-671-1886. crealde.org. Hannibal Square Heritage Center. Established in 2007 by the Crealdé School of Art in partnership with residents of Hannibal Square and the City of Winter Park, the center celebrates the city’s historically AfricanAmerican west side with archival photographs, original artwork and oral histories from longtime residents. The center also hosts visiting exhibitions. Continuing through Aug. 29 is St. Augustine at 450, which celebrates the birthday of America’s oldest city. Opening Sept. 11 is The Sum of Many Parts: Quiltmakers in Contemporary America, which will feature the work of some of America’s top quilters. The display will also include locally created quilts curated by UCF professor and folklorist Dr. Kristin Congdon. Admission is free. 642 W. New England Ave. 407-539-2680. hannibalsquareheritagecenter.org. Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art. The museum houses the world’s most extensive collection of Louis Comfort Tiffany creations, including jewelry, pottery, paintings, art glass and the entire chapel interior originally designed and built for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. This year, the museum celebrates 20 years on Park Avenue with its annual Independence Day Open House on July 4, during which admission will be free for everyone from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Having undergone two subsequent expansions, the facility now encompasses more than 19,000 square feet of gallery and public space. On display through Sept. 27 is The Wreck, an 1880 oil painting by American artist and decorator Lockwood de Forest. The 36-by-48-inch Orientalist work is on view for the first time following extensive conservation. The exhibit includes other de Forest oil studies from the museum’s collection, and is supplemented by photos and essays aimed at helping viewers develop a full appreciation of the painting’s creation, context and symbolism. Ongoing exhibits include Revival and Reform: Eclecticism in the 19th-Century Environment, which encompasses two galleries. Its centerpiece is The Arts, a neoclassical window created by J. & R. Lamb Studios, a prominent American glasshouse of the late 19th century. It’s displayed with an array of leaded-glass windows and
selections of art glass, pottery and furniture of the period. The Bride Elect: Gifts from the 1905 Wedding of Elizabeth Owens Morse, features the original gift registry and some of the 250 gifts presented to the daughter of Charles Hosmer Morse and Martha Owens Morse by her wealthy friends. Among the surviving items are Tiffany art glass, Rookwood pottery and Gorham silver. Another exhibit, Lifelines: Forms and Themes of Art Nouveau, focuses on a school of art, architecture and craftsmanship that was considered avante-garde in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Admission is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, $1 for students and free for children younger than 12. 445 N. Park Ave. 407-645-5311. morsemuseum.org.
PERFORMING ARTS Winter Park Playhouse. Winter Park’s only professional, not-for-profit theater celebrates summer with the popular off-Broadway musical Dames at Sea, a rollicking parody of 1930s Busby Berkeley-style big-screen musicals. The show opens July 24 and runs through Aug. 22. The Playhouse then kicks off its 2015-‘16 season with another off-Broadway hit, The Marvelous Wonderettes, which features such classic pop songs from the ‘50s and ‘60s as “It’s My Party” and “Lollipop.” The lively musical opens Sept. 11 and runs through Oct. 10. 711 Orange Ave. 407-645-0145. winterparkplayhouse.org. Annie Russell Theater. “The Annie,” which has been in continuous operation since 1932, opens its 2015-‘16 season on Sept. 25 with Reefer Madness, a musical comedy based on the infamous 1938 anti-marijuana propaganda film. The show runs through Oct. 3. Tickets for the general public are $20. The Annie also features a Second Stage Series with student-directed plays in the intimate Fred Stone Theater. Second Stage shows are free to the public, and seating is first-come, first served. 407-646-2145. rollins.edu/annie-russell-theatre.
FILM Enzian Film Series. This cozy alternative cinema offers a plethora of film series. Peanut Butter Matinee Family Films are shown the fourth Sunday of each month at noon. Upcoming films include Annie (1982) on July 26, The Parent Trap (1961) on Aug. 23 and Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1998) on September 27. Admission is $5, and a kids’ menu is offered. Saturday Matinee Classics, shown at noon on the second Saturday of each month, will feature Mon Oncle (1958) on July 11, Shane (1953) on Aug. 8 and Bicycle Thieves (1948) on Sept. 12. Admission is $8, and $5 for Enzian Film Society members. Wednesday Night Picher Shows are held the first and third Wednesday of each month. Upcoming films include Donnie Darko (2001) on July 1, Amélie (2001) on July 22, Rollerball (1975) on Aug. 5, (500) Days of Summer (2009) on Aug. 19, UHF (1989) on Sept. 2 and The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai (1984) on Sept. 23. Admission is free to the outdoor series, with valet parking available for $3 per car. Cult Classics are shown the second and last Tuesday of each month at 9:30 p.m. Upcoming films include Lost in Translation (2003) on July 14, Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1982) on July 28, Mean Streets (1973) on Aug. 11, Airplane! (1980) on Aug. 25, Se7en (1995) on Sept. 8 and Best in Show (2000) on Sept. 29. Admission is $5. FilmSlam, a monthly showcase for Florida-made short films, will be presented July 12, Aug. 9 and Sept. 13. Enzian’s Opera & Ballet Summer Series runs the third Saturday of each summer month. On July 18, the film Balanchine/Millepied (2014), which features the Paris Opera Ballet, is slated. The Barber of Seville (2014), performed by the Paris Opera, follows on Aug. 15. The series concludes on Sept. 19 with another Paris Opera Ballet production, La Sylphide (2013). Other special summer events include Science on Screen, highlighted by a showing of the sci-fi thriller Deep Impact (1998), on Aug. 29. 1300 S. Orlando Ave. 407-629-0054. enzian.org.
St. Augustine at 450 Ten photographers capture the oldest city in the nation on the occasion of its 450th anniversary, exploring St. Augustine’s history, preservation efforts and place as a tourist destination, college town and home to a diverse population.
PH OTOGR A PHERS Laura Barthle Sherri Bunye Vaughn Dunham Dennis James Holly Manus Jennifer Pereira Marsee Perkins Peter Schreyer Cynthia Slaughter Kucku Varghese
Happy Returns Crealdé 40th Anniversary Homecoming
The Hannibal Square Heritage Center is a program of Crealdé School of Art. This project is funded in part by Orange County Government through the Arts & Cultural Affairs Program.
June 19 to August 29, 2015 at Hannibal Square Heritage Center 642 W. New England Ave., Winter Park, FL 32789 • 407.539.2680
EVENTS KidFest Summer Film Series. Sponsored by the Enzian with support from Walt Disney World Resorts, this free series presents classic movies that audiences of all ages can enjoy. The series kicks off on July 5 with two Buster Keaton flicks from the 1920s — Seven Chances and The Scarecrow — and ends on Aug. 2 with a more recent favorite, 1993’s The Secret Garden. The Keaton double feature will also run on July 7 and July 21, while The Secret Garden will be screened on July 16 and July 30. Other movies in the series include The Time Machine (1960) on July 9, 23 and 25; Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey (1993) on July 8, 19 and 22; and the animated Song of the Sea, released just last year, on July 15, 29 and Aug. 1. 1300 S. Orlando Ave. 407-629-0054. enzian.org. Popcorn Flicks in the Park. The City of Winter Park and the Enzian collaborate to offer free films for the entire family in Central Park. Popcorn Flicks are usually held on the second Thursday of each month, and start around 8 p.m. Bring a blanket and a snack. The Annette FunicelloFrankie Avalon camp classic Muscle Beach Party (1964) will be shown on July 9, followed by Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002) on Aug. 13 and Strangers on a Train (1951) on Sept. 10. 407-629-1088. enzian.org.
HISTORY Winter Park History Museum. With last year’s opening of a new SunRail station in Central Park, the museum takes a timely look at railroading history with A Whistle in the Distance: The Trains of Winter Park. This fascinating multimedia exhibit traces the role of railroads in Winter Park’s growth and development. Ongoing displays include artifacts dating from the city’s founding as a New England-style resort in the 1880s. Admission is free. 200 W. New England Ave. 407-644-2330. wphistory.org.
Tiffany at the
MORSE The Morse Museum is home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany.
free summer family programs
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445 n. park avenue winter park, florida 32789 (407) 645-5311 www.morsemuseum.org
W I N T E R PA R K M A G AZI N E | summer 2015
The Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida. The center is dedicated to combating anti-Semitism, racism and prejudice with the goal of developing a moral and just community through educational and cultural programs. It houses permanent and temporary exhibit space, archives and a research library. Running from July 6 through Sept. 25, Remembering Ravensbruck focuses on the Nazi concentration camp that interred more than 150,000 women. On July 15, the center will debut a new adult-education series, Understanding Our Tapestry of Faiths, which will feature representatives from various religious communities making presentations and leading discussions. Co-sponsored by the Interfaith Council of Central Florida, the 90-minute sessions will be held on four consecutive Wednesday afternoons. The cost is $15, while admission to the center’s exhibits, films and other programs is free. 851 N. Maitland Ave. 407-628-0555. holocaustedu.org. Zora Neale Hurston National Museum of Fine Arts. Eatonville, arguably the first municipality in the U.S. formed by African-Americans, is strongly associated with Harlem Renaissance writer and folklorist Zora Neale Hurston, who lived there as a girl and recorded her childhood memories in her classic autobiography, Dust Tracks on a Road. The museum that bears her name provides information on the historic city and sponsors quarterly exhibitions featuring the works of African-American artists. Eatonville’s Zora Neale Hurston Trail encompasses 16 historic sites and 10 markers; a walking/driving tour brochure is available at the museum. There is no admission charge, although donations are accepted. For group tours, however, there is a fee and reservations are required. 227 E. Kennedy Blvd., Eatonville. 407-647-3307. zoranealehurstonmuseum.com.
LECTURES Winter Park Institute. The institute, affiliated with Rollins College, presents lectures, readings and seminars by
VOLUNTEER lake osceola watershed cleanup& volunteer appreciation breakfast Saturday July 25 2015
volunteers needed to to sign up
8 - 1 1 a.m. Central Park
downtown Winter Park
clean-up litter in & around the lake 407.599.3364 email@example.com cityofwinterpark.org/kwpb
platinum [$5,000 & up] silver [$500-$999] » display table at special events
» name &/or logo recogition on event ads, press releases, shirts &/or web page » recognition plaque or certiﬁcate
more info @ 407.599.3364 or cityofwinterpark.org/kwpb
MAKE AHUGE DIFFERENCE
gold [$1,000 - $4,999] bronze [$250-499]
want 2 adopt a highway? « 1-800-226-5488 » ballroom dance lessons [$90 | 8-week course]
bus stop ads [$500 annually] «$100 one-time print & installation fee»
[$80 single | $120 double]
memorial park benches [$3000 includes plaque]
just a couple of things to help you save & sustain 1 2 3
Keep your thermostat @ 78 in the summer & 68 in the winter Replace old-school, burnt out bulbs with new energy-eﬃcient LEDs Weatherize your home
Put empty bottles, cans & paper in recycle bins. Keep food & liquids out of recycling bins. Keep all plastic bags/ﬁlm out of recycling bins.
« learn more » cityofwinterpark.org/sustainability
EVENTS thought leaders in an array of disciplines. WPI begins its eighth season on Sept. 16 at the college’s Warden Arena with Leymah Gwobee, a Liberian peace activist and co-winner of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize. All programs are free and open to the public. No tickets are required. Parking is available in the SunTrust parking garage, 166 E. Lyman Ave. 407-691-1995. winterparkinstitute.org.
MARKETS Maitland Farmers’ Market. This year-round, open-air market — held each Sunday from 9 a.m.to 2 p.m. — features fresh produce, seafood, breads and cheeses along with plants, all-natural skin-care products and live music provided by the Performing Arts of Maitland. The setting on Lake Lily boasts a serene boardwalk, jogging trails and a playground as well as picnic areas. 701 Lake Lily Drive. itsmymaitland.com. Winter Park Farmers’ Market. The region’s busiest and arguably most popular farmers’ market is held every Saturday, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the old railroad depot that houses the Winter Park History Museum. The open-air extravaganza offers fine baked goods, produce, plants, honey, cheese, meat, flowers, crafts and other specialty items. After shopping, make a morning of it with a stroll along nearby Park Avenue. Dogs are welcome to bring their people. 200 W. New England Ave. cityofwinterpark.org. Park to Market. This mini-version of Winter Park’s Saturday Farmers’ Market is held on the first Tuesday (11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.) and the first Thursday (4:30 to 6:30 p.m.) of each month in Hannibal Square’s Shady Park. It’s basically one big food truck stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables. Summer dates are July 2, July 7, Aug. 4, Aug. 6, Sept. 1 and Sept. 3. 407-599-3334. cityofwinterpark.org.
MUSIC Music at the Casa. The Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum regularly presents Sunday afternoon acoustic performances, from noon to 3 p.m., in the home’s intimate main parlor. Upcoming performers include the Late fer Dinner Bluegrass Band on July 5, flutist Shannon Caine on July 12, violinist Amy Xaychaleune on Aug. 2, sax and flute soloist Tres Longwell on Aug 9, vocalist Shirley Wang on Aug. 16 and harpist Christine MacPhail on Aug. 23. The museum will be closed for annual maintenance the last two Sundays in July. Admission is free. 656 N. Park Ave. (adjacent to the Winter Park Country Club golf course). 407-628-8200. casafeliz.us.
EVENTS Old-Fashioned Fourth of July. Winter Park’s 19th annual celebration of the nation’s birthday, which runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Central Park, kicks off with a children’s bicycle parade. The Norman Rockwellian commemoration also features live patriotic music by the Bach Festival Brass Band and the Bach Festival Choir. In addition there’ll be horse-drawn wagon rides, a performance by the Orlando Cloggers and music from the Rockin’ Roadster Road Show, which features a DJ playing tunes from the driver’s seat of a tricked-out 1929 Model A with a killer sound system. 407-646-2182. bachfestivalflorida.org. Summer Sidewalk Sale. Participating businesses on Park Avenue and Hannibal Square join forces to offer sales with discounts up to 75 percent off regular prices. This terribly tempting shopping spectacular runs July 9 through 12 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 407-644-8281. experienceparkavenue.com. 3rd Annual Luau by the Pool. This family-friendly event, sponsored by the City of Winter Park and set for Aug. 15, celebrates the end of the summer season (a bit early, perhaps). Featuring games, contests and lots of splashy
fun, it runs from 1 to 4 p.m. Admission is free. Rachel D. Murrah Civic Center, 1050 W. Morse Blvd. 407-599-3275. cityofwinterpark.org.
ISSUES CoffeeTalk. The free monthly gatherings, sponsored by the City of Winter Park, offer the opportunity to discuss issues and concerns with top city officials, with coffee supplied by Barnie’s Coffee Kitchen. Upcoming guests include Commissioner Greg Seidel on July 9, Commissioner Sarah Sprinkel on Aug. 13 and Commissioner Carolyn Cooper on Sept. 30. The confabs begin at 8 a.m. Winter Park Welcome Center, 151 W. Lyman Ave. 407-644-8281. cityofwinterpark.org.
BUSINESS Good Morning Winter Park. Hosted by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, these monthly gatherings attract attendees who enjoy coffee and conversation covering an array of community issues. Events are typically held the second Friday of each month. Upcoming dates include July 10, with Central Florida Community Arts; Aug. 14, with officials from Winter Park Memorial Hospital; and Sept. 11, with representatives from the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission. Networking begins at 7:45 a.m. and the program begins at 8:15 a.m. Admission is free, and a complimentary continental breakfast is served. Winter Park Welcome Center, 151 W. Lyman Ave. 407-644-8281. winterpark.org. A Salute to Business: Celebrating the Legacy of Business in Winter Park. The Winter Park Chamber of Commerce salutes the city’s longest-tenured small businesses on July 23 beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the Rachel D. Murrah Civic Center. With hors d’oeuvres, drinks and live entertainment, the event celebrates local businesses that have remained in operation for 25 years or longer. Free for chamber members, $10 for guests. 1050 W. Morse Blvd. 407-644-8281. winterpark.org. Winter Park Executive Women. Hosted by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, these monthly lunchtime gatherings offer networking opportunities and feature guest speakers who address topics related to leadership development, business growth and local initiatives of special interest to women. Events are typically held the first Monday of each month, although nothing is scheduled for July. The program for Aug. 3 is a panel discussion on Winter Park history. Because the first Monday of September is Labor Day, the following program is slated for Sept. 14 and will feature a panel of female executives from Orlando Health. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m. with lunch and program at noon. Admission is $20 for members, $25 for nonmembers; reservations required. Winter Park Welcome Center, 151 W. Lyman Ave. 407-644-8281. winterpark.org. Small Business Education Series: Hosted by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce and the Small Business Resource Network, these free monthly events feature speakers and panels focused on growing and sustaining small businesses. Although nothing is scheduled for July, a small-business resources panel with representatives from SCORE Orlando, the Small Business Development Center and the Winter Park Public Library will be on Aug. 21. Winter Park Welcome Center, 151 W. Lyman Ave. 407-644-8281. winterpark.org. Business After Hours. Sponsored by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, these gatherings offer members and prospective members a chance to network and learn more about the local businesses that serve as hosts. Appetizers and beverages are served. Events are typically held the third Thursday of each month, although there’ll be a hiatus in July and August. The schedule resumes on Sept. 17 at Park Plaza Gardens, 319 S. Park Ave. Hours are 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. and admission is $5 for chamber members, $15 for non-members. 407-644-8281. winterpark.org.
W I N T E R PA R K M A GAZI N E | summer 2015
presented by harriett lake
Shel PR Marks &
What’s a Poet Laureate Worth These Days? By MICHAEL MCLEOD Yesterday, I lay awake in the palm of the night. A soft rain stole in, unhelped by any breeze, And when I saw the silver glaze on the windows, I started with A, with Ackerman, as it happened, Then Baxter and Calabro, Davis and Eberling, names falling into place As droplets fell through the dark. Names printed on the ceiling of the night. Names slipping around a watery bend. Twenty-six willows on the banks of a stream. — From The Names, by Billy Collins.
ike most modern poets, Billy Collins is unaccustomed to composing on cue. But when the United States Congress tells you to write a poem, you write a poem. At least you do if you’re the country’s poet laureate, as Collins was in 2002, when he was asked to commemorate the victims of the 9/11 attack. So he braided the names of some of the dead together with somber images — a pale sky, the twigs of an ash, a sudden updraft among buildings — to create a brooding processional. Then, as requested, he read the poem at a special joint session on the first anniversary of the terrorist attacks. You won’t find The Names in any of Collins’ published collections. It’s partly out of deference. But it’s also because he isn’t the kind of a poet to seek out grand gestures and momentous revelations. He goes by Billy, not William. When he’s asked about his literary influences, he duly mentions the textbook-enshrined wordsmiths he introduced to students during 30 years of teaching at a small college in the Bronx. He also credits Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam: somehow, the wiseacre glee and anything-can-happen wit of the classic Warner Brothers cartoons have stayed with him since childhood. You can see that in his poems. They are skipping stones with depth, playful but provocative, often circling obliquely toward a surprising twist on an everyday occurrence — say, the chronic barking of a neighbor’s dog (a poem he entitled One More Reason Why I Don’t Keep a Gun in the House.) Rare is the poet who eschews the esoteric. Collins calls his works “hospitable,” and worries
W I N T E R P A R K M A G AZI N E | summer 2015
Billy Collins was known for his ability to lure luminaries to Rollins. Among the first was singer/songwriter Paul Simon.
about how best to lead people into them. “So many things can go wrong at the beginning of a poem,” he says. “It’s like stepping into a canoe.” It was that attitude that made him such a perfect fit for the Winter Park Institute, an ambitious Rollins College initiative meant to bridge the gap between academia and the community at large by bringing brilliant minds to town — Jane Goodall, Maya Angelou, Oliver Stone, Itzhak Perlman and many others — for public appearances and to engage with students and faculty members. Collins was the program’s first speaker, in 2007. A year later, he accepted an invitation to become a permanent fixture as the Institute’s senior distinguished fellow. Since then, his presence, not to mention his connections, have been invaluable. He has brought in friends and acquaintances such as Paul Simon and Jane Pauley as speakers. He even arranged a surprise, students-only appearance this year by Paul McCartney, whom he had met at a book signing years ago and whose stepson was a Rollins student. “I thought I was doing a pretty good job,” says Collins. Which was why he was as surprised as everyone else when he was told a few weeks ago that his contract with Rollins would not be renewed. The move, which also puts the future of the
Institute itself on shakier ground, was a budget-cutting measure. It also represents a philosophical sea change: Rollins, like every other liberal arts institution in the country, is reexamining its approach toward education, with an eye toward providing students with marketable job skills. You can see how a poet might not fit into that pragmatic approach. “There’s a lot of pressure in favor of career-based curriculums,” says Collins. “But the idea of a firstclass lecture series that exposes students to so many brilliant minds — these are the kinds of people a liberal arts institution should be cultivating.” Even if you’re looking at this strictly from a financial point of view, how can you calculate the value of the publicity and the intellectual sheen that comes from having a two-time poet laureate on your campus? “All I can tell you,” says former Rollins College President Rita Bornstein, “is that when I travel around the country and meet people, they’ll say: ‘Oh, Rollins. You have Billy Collins down there, don’t you?’” Not any more, we don’t. Michael McLeod is editor at large for Winter Park Magazine and an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Rollins College.
T H E
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C O M M U N I T Y
A STIMULATING LIFESTYLE NEW CONNECTIONS, NEW OPPORTUNITIES TO LEARN
“You can’t help but make new friends here!” After an eclectic career that ran the gamut from agriculture to advertising to entertainment, Bob Pittman chose The Mayflower as his retirement destination. “Life is simpler here,” he says. “I no longer have to worry about looking after a house, but I’m still surrounded by the possessions that are meaningful to me. My apartment feels like ‘me’ … because it is!”
www.themayflower.com 1620 Mayflower Court Winter Park, FL 32792
A theater aficionado who traveled the world and hobnobbed with diplomats and celebrities, Bob has embraced all aspects of The Mayflower – including the community’s exclusive lifelong-learning partnership with Rollins College. “I love the exchange and conversations with students,” he says. “And I’ve also enjoyed getting to know the other residents. You can’t help but make new friends here!”
What’s your plan for the future? Call today, and let’s talk about it: 407.672.1620.
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