WELLINGTON THE MAGAZINE – December 2021

Page 1

WELLINGTON DECEMBER 2021

Bringing You The Best Of Wellington Since 2004

50 OVER 50

Plus

Dressage Star Robert Dover Pens Fascinating Book Wellington’s Own Ninja Warrior Jordan Fernandez Bright, Delicious Flavors At For The Love Of Food Jim Barnes Marks First Year As Village Manager


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*Programisisavailable availablefor fora alimited limitedtime timefor foractive activeworkers workersand andis issubject subject change without notice. Restrictions apply, see a Minto New Homes Sales Professional details. Base price of the home does not include *Program toto change without notice. Restrictions apply, see a Minto New Sales Professional forfor details. Base price of the home does not transferred in any form or and by any means without express written permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions,by specifications, prices andHomes features areContent approximate and subject to change without notice. Minto, theinclude Minto homesite premium oroptions options upgrades. ©MintoCommunities, Communities, LLC 2021. Not an offer where prohibited state statutes. rights reserved. may be reproduced, copied, altered, distributed, stored homesite premium or and upgrades. LLC Not anand/or offer where prohibited state statutes. AllAll rights reserved. Content may notnot befor reproduced, copied, altered, distributed, stored or or Westlake theby Westlake are©Minto trademarks ofwritten Minto Communities, LLC its affiliates. 2021. by specifications, *Program is logo, available forform aand limited time forlogo active workers and is subject to2021. change without notice. Restrictions apply, see a Minto New Homes Sales Professional details. to Base pricewithout of the home does not include transferred in any or any means without express permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions, prices and features are approximate and subject change notice. Minto, the Minto *Program is available for a limited time for active workers and is subject to change without notice. Restrictions apply, see a Minto New Homes Sales Professional for details. Base price of the home does not include transferred in any form or and by any means without express written permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions,byspecifications, prices and features areContent approximate andbe subject to change without notice. Minto, the Minto homesite premium or options upgrades. ©Minto Communities, LLC 2021. Not an offer where prohibited state statutes. All rights reserved. may not reproduced, copied, altered, distributed, stored logo, Westlake andthe theWestlake Westlake logo aretrademarks trademarks Minto Communities, LLC and/or affiliates. 2021. homesite premium or options andare upgrades. ©Minto Communities, LLC LLC 2021. Not an offer where prohibited by state statutes. All rights reserved. Content may not be reproduced, copied, altered, distributed, stored or or logo, Westlake and logo ofof Minto Communities, and/or itsits affiliates. 2021. *Program is available aany limited time for active workers and is subject to change without notice. Restrictions apply, see a Minto New Homes Sales Professional for details. Base price of the home does not include transferred in any form orfor by express written permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions, specifications, prices andand features areare approximate and subject toto change transferred in any form ormeans by anywithout means without express written permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions, specifications, prices features approximate and subject changewithout withoutnotice. notice.Minto, Minto,the the Minto Minto homesite premium or options and upgrades. ©Minto Communities, LLC 2021. Not an offer where prohibited logo, Westlake and the Westlake logo arelogo trademarks of Minto LLC and/or its affiliates. 2021.2021. by state statutes. All rights reserved. Content may not be reproduced, copied, altered, distributed, stored or logo, Westlake and the Westlake are trademarks ofCommunities, Minto Communities, LLC and/or its affiliates. transferred in any form or by any means without express written permission. Artist’s renderings, dimensions, specifications, prices and features are approximate and subject to change without notice. Minto, the Minto logo, Westlake and the Westlake logo are trademarks of Minto Communities, LLC and/or its affiliates. 2021.



December 2021

contents

Features

22

50 OVER 50: UNIQUE PHOTOGRAPHY PROJECT CELEBRATES WOMEN 50 YEARS AND BETTER “Beauty has no expiration date.” It’s a popular quote, but putting the idea into action took on new meaning for Wellington resident and professional photographer Dannielle Judd. “It was time to start a conversation about the beauty of aging and to embrace the confidence about being comfortable in our own skin,” she said. And with that, 50 women joined Judd on an adventure to share the common bond of being over 50.

29

ROBERT DOVER’S SURPRISINGLY CANDID MEMOIR IS THIS SEASON’S MUST-READ BOOK Longtime Wellington resident and internationally renowned dressage rider Robert Dover can now add published author to his long list of accomplishments. Dover’s memoir, The Gates to Brilliance: How a Gay, Jewish, Middle-Class Kid Who Loved Horses Found Success, was released by Trafalgar Square Books last month. It is a book for anyone who has struggled to overcome personal challenges and the judgment of strangers to become the best they can be. BY DEBORAH WELKY

33

MEET JORDAN FERNANDEZ, WELLINGTON’S VERY OWN AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR Sometimes, if you visualize your dream, it will materialize. Jordan Fernandez, a 14-year-old Wellington High School freshman, was seven years old when she first saw the show American Ninja Warrior on TV. That seed eventually led to her appearance as a contestant on Peacock’s American Ninja Warrior Junior show this fall. BY MIKE MAY

39

ALL PAWS ANIMAL CLINIC ON STATE ROAD 7 PROVIDES LOVING CARE FOR YOUR PETS At an age where many children’s idea of a future career involves tiaras or a cape, Dr. Patricia Forsythe of All Paws Animal Clinic knew she wanted to be a veterinarian. Planning on a career helping animals from the tender age of 5, she opened All Paws Animal Clinic on State Road 7 in 2002. BY M. DENNIS TAYLOR

61

VILLAGE MANAGER JIM BARNES IS WRAPPING UP HIS FIRST YEAR AT WELLINGTON’S HELM The Village of Wellington began its 25th anniversary year with a new village manager, Jim Barnes, who is now celebrating his first anniversary as the village’s top official. Barnes first arrived in Wellington in 2003, and he has served in a number of key village positions.“My professional career has been a series of opportunities found — a series of right times and right places,” he explained. BY DEBORAH WELKY

49

34 61 54

on the cover

Photographer Dannielle Judd is featured this issue with her 50 Over 50 project.

REALTOR SOPHIE GHEDIN RECENTLY HELPED THREE GENERATIONS OF ONE LOCAL FAMILY Sophie Ghedin, a Realtor with Keller Williams Realty Wellington, prides herself on developing ongoing relationships with her many clients — and that has led to Ghedin working with three generations of Wellington’s Wandell family: Rosie Wandell, her daughter Juliana Rose Wandell and mother-inlaw Rosalie Wandell. BY MIKE MAY

45

22

29

PHOTO BY MICHAEL WALDING

Departments WELLINGTON SOCIAL SCENE 12 14 16 18

Wellington Community Foundation’s Fundraiser A Success Wellington Celebrates Veterans Day With Parade, Ceremony Wellington Hosts ’70s Disco-Themed Murder Mystery Dinner Gift Gathering Supports B&G Club Wellington Dinner Dance

49 WELLINGTON TABLE One of the newest additions to the original Wellington Mall is a smart little café called For the Luv of Food.The menu is filled with bright flavors and lots of healthy options, but a highlight is the variety of taste-tempting bubble teas. Not sure what makes a bubble tea? Owner Kim Seow is happy to provide some insight and help you find the perfect drink to match your mood. BY CALLIE SHARKEY

54 WELLINGTON REAL ESTATE Wellington Real Estate this month visits a beautiful home in the Greenview Shores neighborhood presented by Don and Maureen Gross of Keller Williams Wellington. The moment you enter, you know that it is going to be magnificent! Every detail has been meticulously designed by the owner and reflects a sophisticated, yet rustic taste. wellington the magazine | december 2021

9


from the

publisher OUR VERY BEST WISHES FOR PEACE AND JOY THIS HOLIDAY SEASON! What a perfect time of the year to celebrate women as we move into this holiday season! This month, we are excited to bring our readers a unique pictorial featuring the work of a recent project headed up by longtime Wellington resident and professional photographer Dannielle Judd. The 50 Over 50 project is something we are honored to share with you, as it shines light on 50 amazing women in all their beauty. Also this month, we chat with six-time dressage Olympian and Wellington resident Robert Rover about his surprisingly candid memoir, The Gates to Brilliance: How a Gay, Jewish, Middle-Class Kid Who Loved Horses Found Success, released last month by Trafalgar Square Books. This season’s mustread book, Gates to Brilliance is for anyone who has struggled to overcome personal challenges and the judgment of strangers to become the best they can be. We also speak to Wellington’s own “ninja warrior,” Jordan Fernandez, who fulfilled her dream by appearing on the current season of Peacock’s show American Ninja Warrior Junior. Join us as we learn about her training sessions and trip to Los Angeles for this amazing experience. Next, we catch up with Realtor Sophie Ghedin with Keller Williams Wellington to learn how she made real estate dreams come true for three generations of Wellington’s Wandell family. Wellington Health this month visits with Dr. Patricia Forsythe. Known as “Dr. Patty,” she runs All Paws Animal Clinic on State Road 7, a state-of-the art veterinary practice that provides loving care for your pets. Wellington Table stops by For the Luv of Food, which opened recently in the original Wellington Mall. Owner Kim Seow has put together a menu filled with bright flavors and lots of healthy options, highlighted by a wide variety of taste-tempting bubble teas. Wellington Real Estate this month visits a beautiful home in the Greenview Shores neighborhood presented by Donald and Maureen Gross of Keller Williams Wellington. This unique, custom home is expertly designed with magnificent details throughout. Finally, our Celebrate Wellington series concludes with a profile of Village Manager Jim Barnes, who is wrapping up his first year as Wellington’s top official. Barnes, however, has been a key player at the Village of Wellington since he arrived in 2003. As we go to press with our final issue of 2021, we would like to end the year by sending well wishes to all of our readers, along with hopes for peace and joy around the world this holiday season and all year through. Here’s looking forward to a happier, healthier New Year for everyone, from all of the staff here at Wellington The Magazine!

Dawn Rivera

Dawn Rivera, Publisher

10 december 2021 | wellington the magazine

volume 18, number 12 DECEMBER 2021

executive editor Joshua I. Manning

publisher

Dawn Rivera

senior graphic designer Stephanie Rodriguez

graphic designers Nancy Pobiak Yolanda Cernicky

account managers Betty Buglio Evie Edwards Joetta Palumbo

bookkeeping

Jill Kaskel Carol Lieberman

photography Abner Pedraza

contributors

Erin Davisson Denise Fleischman Melanie Kopacz Mike May Louis Hillary Park Callie Sharkey M. Dennis Taylor Deborah Welky

WELLINGTON Bringing You The Best Of Wellington Since 2004

THE MAGAZINE

12794 W. Forest Hill Blvd., Suite 33 Wellington, FL 33414 Phone: (561) 793-7606 Fax: (561) 793-1470 www.wellingtonthemagazine.com

published by

Wellington The Magazine, LLC

chairman/ceo

Barry S. Manning Wellington The Magazine is published monthly in Wellington, Florida. Copyright 2021, all rights reserved by Wellington The Magazine, LLC. Contents may not be reproduced in any form without the written consent of the publisher. The publisher reserves the right to refuse advertising. The publisher accepts no responsibility for advertisement errors beyond the cost of the portion of the advertisement occupied by the error within the advertisement itself. The publisher accepts no responsibility for submitted materials. All submitted materials subject to editing.


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wellington | social scene

PHOTOS BY DENISE FLEISCHMAN

WELLINGTON COMMUNITY FOUNDATION’S FUNDRAISER A SUCCESS

After much deliberation and proceeding with caution, the Wellington Community Foundation held its first in-person fundraiser since 2019 on Friday, Nov. 12 at the Wellington National Golf Club. Last year, due to the pandemic, the foundation took its biggest fundraiser of the year online. “It is nice to have medical professionals on our board,” Wellington Community Foundation Chair Tom Wenham said.“Thanks to the guidance of Dr. Gordon Johnson and Wellington Regional Medical Center CEO Pam Tahan, we were able to navigate the current conditions and put the necessary protocols in place to have a safe, in-person event.” The outpouring of community support was obvious at the sold-out event. “The entire evening was dedicated to Wellington’s Heroes, our military men and women who served to allow us to live with all the freedoms we have today,”WCF Vice Chair Maria Becker said. “It was time to get back together under one roof and share the night together for a great cause.” The Red,White & Blue Jeans “A Salute To Our Heroes” patriotic-themed event is held each year close to Veterans Day and honors Wellington’s Heroes. Although there was a smaller attendance, by invitation only, the foundation was still able to raise $80,000 this year, all of which will be used Mary Lou Bedford sings the to serve residents of Wellington, particularly seniors, children and veterans in need, by supporting national anthem as WCF Chair Tom Wenham salutes in honor. and improving their quality of life. This year’s sponsors included: DIAMOND SPONSOR Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith; RUBY SPONSOR Wellington Regional Medical Center; and SAPPHIRE SPONSORS Regis and Thomas Wenham.This year’s table sponsors included Jim and Paula Sackett, Dr. and Mrs. Gordon Johnson, Palm Beach Urology Associates and Seacoast Bank. Event sponsors included Wellington The Magazine, the Town-Crier newspaper,Wellington National Golf Club,Above & Beyond Party Décor and Kenny Mondo Productions. The evening kicked off with Mary Lou Bedford setting the stage with the national anthem, followed by a moving “empty chair” ceremony to honor prisoners of war and those missing in action. The foundation’s board of directors thanked everyone who sponsored, donated and supported their efforts to continue “Building A Stronger Community.” For additional information about the foundation, or if you would still like to make a donation, visit www.wellingtoncommunityfoundation.org.

(Left to right) Veterans in attendance are honored for their service to the nation; WCF board members Jim Sackett, Hope Barron, Joanna Boynton, Pam Tahan, Maria Becker, Tom Wenham, Maggie Zeller and Dr. Gordon Johnson; Village Manager Jim Barnes, Councilwoman Tanya Siskind, Vice Mayor John McGovern and Michelle McGovern; and Leo Buquicchio, Walter and Katie Imperatore, Maureen and Don Gross, Maggie Zeller, and Frank and Herta Suess.

(Left to right) Kevin Enterlein, Carlos and Haydee Rodriquez, Maria and Dr. Edward Becker, Dr. Israel and Yamirka Machin, and Melissa Enterlein; Don and Maureen Gross, Dr. Juan Ortega, Joanna Boynton, Jaene Miranda and Ben Boynton; Charlene Bishop, Jenny Baily, Mary and Skip Liguori, and Bobby and B.J. Ewing; and Andrew and Amy Burr, Scott and Mair Armand, and Marilyn and David Berns.

(Left to right) Jermaine and Candice Bucknor, Dr. Gordon and Dr. Linda Johnson, and Jennifer and Nigel Baker; Christopher McGinley, Lisa Materdomini, Amy & Andrew Burr, Hope Baron, Bob Salerno, and Marilyn & David Berns; Jim and Lynn Hanseder, Lynn and Vinny Parisi, and Paula and Jim Sackett; and Jenny Baily, Dr. Jeffrey and Charlene Bishop, Skip and Mary Liguori, Andrea Enterlein and Jeff Nowicki.

12 december 2021 | wellington the magazine


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wellington | social scene

PHOTOS BY DENISE FLEISCHMAN

WELLINGTON CELEBRATES VETERANS DAY WITH PARADE, CEREMONY

The light rain prior to Wellington’s Veterans Day Parade and Ceremony on Thursday, Nov. 11 did not discourage those who came to honor local servicemen and women.After a procession down Forest Hill Blvd. to the Wellington Veterans Memorial, guests and honorees attended a ceremony dedicated to recognizing the sacrifices given by our veterans. Former Mayor Tom Wenham, who served during the Korean War, addressed the crowd and introduced the new Wellington Heroes program. Wreaths were laid in honor of each military branch.

(Left to right) The PBCFR Pipes & Drums march in step; American Legion Post 390 members during the parade; Jennifer Weiler and her daughter Adalyn came to show their gratitude; Ellery Reynolds waves a flag in honor of her veteran parents William and Jennifer Reynolds, as well as her brothers marching with the scouts; and Adrianna Siena sings the national anthem.

(Left to right) American Legion Post 390 Commander Jay Froehlich, Mayor Anne Gerwig and Larry Williams lay the U.S. Army wreath; Councilwoman Tanya Siskind, Mario Silvercup and Henry Tocci place the wreath in honor of the U.S. Marines; Tom Wenham, Al Ziker and Vice Mayor John McGovern place the wreath on behalf of the U.S. Air Force; and Councilman Michael Drahos presents the POW/MIA wreath with Jim Napuli, Jerry Klein and Ernie Zimmerman.

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Ryan Homes | Lennar | D.R. Horton Materials are protected by copyright, trademark, and other intellectual property laws. All rights in these materials are reserved. All products and company names marked as trademarked (™) or registered (®) are trademarks of their respective holders. Copying, reproduction and distribution of materials without prior written consent of Freehold Communities is strictly prohibited. All information, plans, and pricing are subject to change without notice. This information does not represent a specific offer of sale or solicitation to purchase property within Arden. Images do not reflect racial preference.


wellington | social scene

PHOTOS BY DENISE FLEISCHMAN

WELLINGTON HOSTS ’70S DISCO-THEMED MURDER MYSTERY DINNER

The Village of Wellington presented its“Death at the Disco” Murder Mystery dinner on Saturday, Nov. 6 at the Wellington Community Center. It was an evening of dinner, drinks and deceit. Disco music and a costume contest made for a colorful evening presented by Standing Room Only Productions.

(Left to right) The Hoffman team solved the murder mystery; costume contest winners Viv Velandia, Karin King and Scott Stern with Cathy Rollins (left) and Todd Vittum (right); Scott Stern, Courtney Burns-Suarez and Roy Scott; and Song Title Scramble winner Felicia Gerber with Todd Vittum as Detective Richard Head.

(Left to right) Tiffanie Hoffman and Jasmine Hoffman; Alexandra and Earl Hansil; Dee Miller with Crystal and David Womack; Dana Kaplan, Melissa Sullivan, Yvette Heller and Felicia Gerber; and Lenny and Danielle Hernandez, Steffani Hernandez, Camila Beltrame and Michael Hernandez.

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wellington | social scene

PHOTOS BY DENISE FLEISCHMAN

GIFT GATHERING SUPPORTS B&G CLUB WELLINGTON DINNER DANCE

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County held a Gift Gathering Party on Wednesday, Nov. 3 at the Wellington National Golf Club. Guests brought donations that will be utilized in gift baskets for the silent auction at the upcoming 34th annual Wellington Dinner Dance, which will take place Friday, Jan. 7 at the Wycliffe Golf & Country Club.

(Left to right) Honorary Chair Julia Giroux, Honorary Chair Angie Payne, Louis Eisenberg, Event Chair Dr. Ana Ferwerda, Honorary Chair Charlene Ramos and Honorary Chair Maria Becker; Charlene Ramos, Kathleen Gannon-Ledsome, Julie Khanna, Councilwoman Tanya Siskind, Dr. Ana Ferwerda, Julia Giroux, Yeimi Culbert and Jennifer Black; Dr. Ana Ferwerda, Julia Giroux and Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County CEO Jaene Miranda; and Palms West Hospital’s Michael Barbera, Boys & Girls Club Chief Development Officer Mary O’Connor and Palms West Hospital CEO Jason Kimbrell.

(Left to right) Elena Corsano, Jennifer Quent, Nicole Miranda, Tim Tracy and Sandra Stella; Charlene and Chris Ramos, Luba McDonald, Marlene McQuivey, and Angie and Dan Payne; Tammy and Michael Basore brought a gift for the raffle; and Councilwoman Tanya Siskind and Maria Becker.

18 december 2021 | wellington the magazine



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50 50 OV E R

PROJEC T

2021

Photography Project Celebrates Women 50 Years And Better “Beauty has no expiration date.” It’s a popular quote, but putting the idea into action took on a whole new meaning for longtime Wellington resident and professional photographer Dannielle Judd. “It was time to start a conversation about the beauty of aging and to embrace the confidence about being comfortable in our own skin,” she explained. And with that, 50 women joined Judd on an adventure to share the common bond of being over 50. This month, Wellington The Magazine joins them in celebrating the strength, wisdom and beauty of 50 Women Over 50. Judd has been a professional photographer for the past five years, but she has always loved photography and knew it was her passion. Yet it wasn’t until she turned 48 that she began to look at it as her career. Although she had already taken thousands of photographs, and always had the urge to create, it took her time to make the leap.

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Jan

Claudia

Jill

Mary

Adrienne

Barbara

Amy

Christine

Merari

Peggy

Marita

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Ruth


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Judd is not the first photographer to do a 50 Over 50 project, but when she saw the idea, she knew it was something she wanted to do. Being a woman over 50 herself, she knew there are so many stereotypes out there about aging. She wants people to know that many women are just finding their groove at age 50. Judd wanted to showcase all different nationalities, personalities and professions in this unique photography project. So many women spend their lives as either a wife, mother or both, that they never really find their own identity. She took to social media about the project and asked those interested to complete a questionnaire. “After speaking to them on the phone and explaining the entire process, we then would book their wardrobe consultation, where they come into my studio and get to use my ‘Dream Wardrobe Collection.’ It consists of more than 250 dresses and gowns, along with tons of accessories, all for my clients to use during their photo shoots,” Judd explained. “Then the super fun part — the photo shoot! We generally have the ladies wear anywhere from three to five outfits during their session.” This experience was transformational for many of the participants. Many would come in with low expectations. But after their hair and makeup are done, their inner light shines through. “You can just see them oozing with confidence,” Judd said. “It truly is inspirational for me as a woman, and a photographer, to share this experience with them.” Judd tries to share her own experiences with clients in hopes of them opening up and trusting the process. Many were just waiting for the opportunity to shine in their own way, to let the world know that today’s women aren’t slowing down just because they’re over 50. The project took approximately 14 months from beginning to end, and the results are priceless. There was never a moment that Judd didn’t believe the project would work out. “These ladies fed my soul,” she said,

Vicki

Marshon

Debra

Karen

Regina

Maria

Laura

Pam

Ilene

Kara

Laurie

Jess

Lisa

Stacy

Amy

Lilia

Allison

Rosemary

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adding that their stories of inspiration kept her going. “My confidence going in was a bit shaky, but each lady is so different from the next, that I quickly realized that creating customized sessions was going to be a no-brainer.” The first woman photographed for the project was Amy. “She came in with the best energy,” Judd recalled. “A breast cancer survivor, her story is so moving. Her resilience is what captivated me.” Fast forward to the last shoot, which was Clare. “She turned 60 this November and was hosting her own birthday bash and had some fantastic ideas she wanted specifically for her party,” Judd said. “I remember after photographing Clare, I sat in my studio and looked through all the images and was just blown away at the beauty, wisdom, creativity and uniqueness of every single woman who entered my studio.” Now that the inaugural project is on the books, Judd is ready to do it all again. There will be another round of 50 Over 50 for 2022. “This was such an amazing experience, and I can’t wait to get started,” she said. While some came in without a clue how they wanted to be photographed, others came in with big ideas. “I love empowering women,” Judd said. “I think of these ladies as my friends now, and some even as sisters, we got that close. The relationships formed are truly priceless. I believe that we, as women, should support, uplift, embrace and root for each other. Together, we can do anything.” As a woman over the age of 50 — soon to be 55 in January — Judd wanted to show that women are beautiful at every age. “Beauty has no expiration date,” she reiterated. “You deserve to be celebrated and honored.” Dannielle Judd unveiled the results of her year-long 50 Over 50 project with a celebration on Saturday, Nov. 20 at the Live 360 Studio in the Mall at Wellington Green. Learn more about her upcoming project at www.danniellejudd.com.

Cathy

Laura

Virginia

Michelle

Jayne

Ro

Marta

Elizabeth

-Clare

Lori

Maria

Kimberly

Diane

Anne Marie

Korinne

Robbie

Dannielle

Irene

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THE GATES TO BRILLIANCE Dressage Olympian Robert Dover’s Surprisingly Candid Memoir Is This Season’s Must-Read Book BY DEBORAH WELKY

Longtime Wellington resident and internationally renowned dressage rider Robert Dover can now add published author to his long list of accomplishments. Dover’s memoir, The Gates to Brilliance: How a Gay, Jewish, MiddleClass Kid Who Loved Horses Found Success, was released by Trafalgar Square Books last month. Gates to Brilliance is a book for anyone who has struggled to overcome personal challenges and the judgment of strangers to become the best they can be. “We moved very often when I was a child,” Dover remembered.“From Chicago to Toronto to the Bahamas to Fort Lauderdale to Atlanta. My father worked for my grandfather’s automobile headlamp company and my mother was an actress. In the Bahamas, they both sold real estate. They divorced when I was 17, then, seven years later, got back together and spent the rest of their lives together. So, I didn’t make friends or have the kinds of roots that children who stay in one location end up having — no lifelong pals and no strong memories of my times in those schools. I didn’t speak much for one full year in high school.” The one constant in Dover’s early life was the Pony Club — whether in the United States, Canada or the Bahamas.

“I’m hopeful that someday people will see each other as equals — respect and honor each other for all their diversity.” — Robert Dover wellington the magazine | december 2021 29


Six-time Olympian Robert Dover has now added published author to his long list of accomplishments. PHOTO BY ISABEL J. KUREK

There, among other young riders, he learned horsemanship — and began to come to terms with who he was. The book includes a frank discussion regarding how he was abused by a teen neighbor as a child and his long road to dealing with the repercussions. “Because of that, I ended up having an aversion to men,” Dover said.“I would basically stay away from men and, consequently, my sexuality was suppressed. I liked being with girls and went out with girls.Then, one girl I had a relationship with — and really loved — broke up with me. A guy at the barn said we should go out and get drunk — and I ended up waking up with him.That was a big change in my life! There was a lot of crying and a lot of trying to figure out who I was and what was going on.” But being gay in the sports world was not easy at the time. “It was complicated back then,” Dover said. “I didn’t come out publicly in the horse world until 1988, when Greg Louganis hit his head on the diving board and was bleeding into the pool; it was the time of AIDS. But Louganis ended up changing the game for people in sports. Coming out is difficult as an Olympic athlete — you’re concerned for your career.” In his 30s, Dover confronted the man who had abused him decades before.“I 30

december 2021 | wellington the magazine

found him and called him,” he recalled. “I said,‘I just want you to know you had a real impact on my life. I’m not looking for an apology, but I just want you to know it was not an inconsequential thing that you did.’” As an adult, Dover has lived all over the United States and spent a great deal of time in Europe.As a young Jew in the Atlanta area, he was the only kid in the barns not to be invited to the Christmas parties, but he didn’t know why. “Looking back on it, it’s interesting,” Dover said.“I didn’t look at it as discriminatory at the time. Later, as an adult, I had a wonderful client who went to Europe with me to look for a horse. A German trainer was driving us and, in leaving one of the barns, he asked me to drive because he had been drinking. It was raining hard, and I crashed the car into a lamp post. I was apologizing profusely when he said,‘Don’t worry — it’s only a Jew’s car,’ meaning,‘It’s only a cheap car.’ The lady in the backseat, my client, was about to pounce over the seat and strangle him, but I begged her not to because I was working for him as well. Yet it was one of those moments where you just see that there is still racism, and it abounds in places.” It is a concern he sees rebounding here in the United States.“Seeing people who used to hide under rocks, come out with boldness because they felt empowered by politics to blatantly show their stripes — I have seen it and known it, and I look back at these little moments in my life, recognizing that those things were there and probably still are,” Dover said. “I’m hopeful that someday people will see each other as equals — respect and honor each other for all their diversity. It’s so different now in sports than when I was doing my first Olympics. Someone recently asked me if I ended up having people embrace me because I owned my gayness, but what I think

really happened is that they started to embrace me because I started to win. In winning, you command respect whatever your sexuality is.” And winning is something that Dover has experience in. A six-time Olympian (1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000 and 2004), Dover has earned more honors than any other U.S. dressage rider, including four Olympic medals. He also participated in seven FEI World Equestrian Games. In 1987, he also became the first American since 1960 to win the Aachen Grand Prix — something Dover considers a distinguishing moment in his career. His many wins, however, overshadow the many difficulties along the way. “There were so many failures that were extremely dramatic in some of the biggest arenas in the world,” Dover said. “I was on the 1984 Olympic team, then a world championship team in 1986. But I was ranked 32nd. I still was not understanding the way of a winner. I was high up in rankings in America; but winning on the international stage was not happening. So, I said to myself,‘I am going to Europe and not coming back until I become a winner.’ I stayed until 1988, and during that time, show by show, judge by judge, and with the help of many mentors, I learned a lot. It was the difference between entering with a low degree of confidence and entering with the knowledge that I have the ability to actually win those classes.” With victory came respect. “Once I started winning classes, it just changed everything,” he said. “I had a winning streak going with multiple horses in Europe. Suddenly, the Europeans stopped treating me like ‘that stupid American’ and more like just another touring professional. Of course, then they made it sound like they were responsible for my winning. Many of them helped me a lot, but what helped me the most was my


friends.The more my friends believed in me, the more I believed in myself.When I came home in 1988, having been No. 1 in the World Cup rankings in 1987 and fourth in the World Cup finals — that changed everything.” In more recent years, Dover has served as technical advisor and chef d’équipe for the U.S. Dressage Team. Under his leadership, the U.S. Dressage Team returned to the podium at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, where the team won a bronze medal. Additionally, Dover coached the U.S. Dressage Team to a gold medal at the Pan American Games in 2015, and a team and individual silver medal at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon in 2018. Dover has also been a major supporter of the greater equestrian community. In the 1990s, he was a founding member of the Equestrian AIDS Foundation, which provided financial as-

sistance to those in the horse industry stricken with AIDS. Now the Equestrian Aid Foundation, it helps all equestrians in need overcome adversity. He was a driving force behind the creation of the Global Dressage Festival series here in Wellington, and also spearheaded American Equestrians Got Talent, the largest equestrian fundraising talent show. And what about Dover? What if he could change everything? Where would he start? “There would be no doubt that I would try to get everybody on the same page about the things the world is grappling with right now, beginning with climate change,” he said. “Mother Nature has pretty much had it with us. She began hinting, and now she is speaking pretty loudly that we get our act together. While we’re worried about other things and fighting with each other about politics, we’re neglecting the fact

that we’re not going to have anything to fight about pretty quickly.” A fearless competitor, Dover fears just one thing now: death. “Life is going by so fast. The story of my life is being written faster than I had hoped for,” Dover said. “When you think you’re on the way up, it appears that you have your whole life ahead of you.Then you blink, and most of it is behind you. I’m having such a fabulous life. I just don’t want it to end.” With his new book, Dover is excited about being able to tell his story — the good and the bad — to the entire world. “I’m looking forward to seeing how it resonates with the public,” he said. “I hope readers find it helpful to their own lives — to achieving happiness and success.” Visit www.horseandriderbooks.com to secure your copy of Robert Dover’s new book.

Find The Key To Your Dream Home! Call Sophie Ghedin Premier Award Winning Realtor Sophie’s sincere interest in helping her clients discover that special property to meet both their needs and desires is the hallmark of her success, consistently placing her among the TOP 5% of her peers at Keller Williams Wellington. Skilled Negotiator Specializing In: • Luxury Homes Part of Keller Williams Luxury Team • Equestrian Properties Lifelong Rider involved in the Equestrian Community • Single Family Homes Knowledgeable of Palm Beach County’s unique Real Estate Market • Rentals - Seasonal or Annual Work with a Realtor that speaks your language fluent in English, French and Spanish.

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561-236-1977 wellington the magazine | december 2021 31


Thanks for caring about the hospital that cares for you. Bethesda Hospital West With the support of Baptist Health Foundation’s Palm Beach County donors, Bethesda Hospital West provides patients a comprehensive array of medical services, including an Emergency Department that cares for adults and children. This modern hospital offers all private rooms; a 10-bed intensive care unit; advanced cardiac CT imaging; and a state-of-the-art endovascular and interventional surgical suite for minimally invasive cardiovascular procedures. At Baptist Health Foundation, philanthropy is making an important investment in Bethesda Hospital West to care for our growing community and create a healthier future for all of us.

Learn how you can support Bethesda Hospital. Visit BaptistHealth.net/Giving or call 561-737-7733, ext. 84445.


WELLINGTON’S OWN NINJA WARRIOR Jordan Fernandez Fulfills Her Dream By Appearing On Peacock’s ‘American Ninja Warrior Junior’ BY MIKE MAY

Sometimes, if you visualize your dream, it will materialize. Jordan Fernandez, a 14-year-old Wellington resident and current Wellington High School freshman, was seven years old when she first saw the show American Ninja Warrior on TV. It made a life-altering impact on her young life. If you haven’t heard, Fernandez was recently a contestant on Peacock’s American Ninja Warrior Junior show. But while her debut on national television is a story unto itself, what’s noteworthy is the path she followed to get from South Florida to southern California. “I was seven years old, and I was watching American Ninja Warrior for the first time on TV at my uncle’s house,” Fernandez recalled. “I liked it so much that I wanted to get on the show, but I was too young.” Fast forward to age 12. She still had the American Ninja Warrior dream, but had done very little to pursue it because of her young age. That’s when American Ninja Warrior Junior started, and she was old enough to appear on this version of the show. However, Fernandez realized that she was not yet strong enough to compete among the show’s contestants. So, Fernandez started working out at her home in Wellington, mostly in the backyard.

Wellington’s Jordan Fernandez gets ready to compete on her episode of American Ninja Warrior Junior, now streaming on Peacock. PHOTO BY PATRICK WYMORE/PEACOCK

Her goal was to get fitter, stronger and ready to compete. “I had to start working on my upper body strength, lower body strength and my balance,” Fernandez said.“In the beginning, I worked on pull-up bars, rings and monkey bars — all in the backyard.” It didn’t take long for her family to realize that she was serious about pursuing a spot on American Ninja Warrior Junior, so they built an indoor obstacle course within the family’s garage. That gave Fernandez 24/7/365 access to a workout facility. The goal was to re-cre-

ate a scenario that was somewhat similar to the obstacle course, without the water hazard, used on American Ninja Warrior Junior. In early May of this year, Fernandez was notified that casting was open for this year’s season of American Ninja Warrior Junior. She applied immediately. It was the chance she had been waiting and working for since she was seven years old. “At the beginning, I had to complete a number of forms for the producers to let them know I was serious about being on the show,” she said. wellington the magazine | december 2021 33


Jordan Fernendez hopes to become a firefighter, like her late father. PHOTO BY PATRICK WYMORE/PEACOCK

If the producers liked her application, they would ask for more information.And they did. “For the second application, I had to record and send the producers a few videos with me on camera convincing

them how serious I was about being a contestant on the show,” Fernandez explained. If the producers remained convinced about her being a great candidate, then they would speak with her

mother. And they did.“The third part of the application was when the producers spoke with my mom [Traciann] on the phone to confirm my interest and availability to be on the show,” Fernandez explained. That conversation took place in late May with her mother confirming that her daughter’s interest was serious and sincere.Then it was time for Fernandez to start packing her bags for a trip to Hollywood. On Monday, June 28, Fernandez traveled to Los Angeles to film season three, episode four of the American Ninja Warrior Junior show. She was joined on the trip by her mother, brother and sister. They were in LA for a week and stayed at a hotel downtown. It was an amazing experience. “It was a crazy week,” Fernandez chuckled. “It was absolutely insane. It was so unreal. It was my first time under the lights.”

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As much as Fernandez enjoyed the chance to compete as an athlete on national television, the best part of the trip was the time spent at the hotel with the other contestants. The friendships began when they traveled in the bus from the airport to the hotel with the other competitors. It only got better from there. “One of the best parts of the entire week was the time spent at the hotel with everybody on the show, eating together and swimming in the hotel pool,” Jordan said.“It was like being at summer camp. About 15 of us still stay in touch through a group chat.” While in LA, they taped the show, which eventually debuted on Thursday, Sept. 23 and remains available to stream. Fernandez and her family watched the show from their home in Wellington. “I would have done better had I been less nervous,” she admitted. “But I was pleased with how I performed.” Fernandez’s performance entailed two attempts on the obstacle course, with each attempt lasting about 90 seconds. The competition format remained virtually the same as it had been during the first two seasons. In all, 96 children, from all parts of the U.S., competed in three different age divisions — 9-10, 11-12 and 13-14. Each bracket featured 32 contestants mentored by two top American Ninja Warrior competitors, Najee Richardson and Jesse Labreck. “Jesse went out of her way to provide coaching and encouragement, advice and guidance to me,” Fernandez said.“We also took some selfies.” The episode includes a biographical sketch of Fernandez, including her desire to become a firefighter in honor of her late father, Lt. Alvis Fernandez, who served with Boynton Beach Fire Rescue. When it came to the actual competi-

“I was seven years old, and I was watching American Ninja Warrior for the first time on TV, liked it so much that I wanted to get on the show.” — Jordan Fernandez tion, two youngsters raced side-by-side on an obstacle course — ninja versus ninja. Fernandez recalls the taping of the show with great clarity. It was a long and memorable day. Her wardrobe consisted of a gray tank top, black shorts, low-cut socks and sneakers. “We woke up at 6 a.m., and we started work on the set at 9 a.m.,” she said. “We finished taping by 3 p.m.” According to Jordan, the obstacle course tested her strength, balance, speed and flexibility.To get from the beginning to the end, it took about 90 seconds. The goal was to reach the buzzer at the end, without falling into the water hazard that lurked below. “I competed twice, but didn’t reach the buzzer,” Fernandez said. “I was always one obstacle away.” It was not easy, but Fernandez did her very best and was able to fulfill her dream. She plans to continue being physically active at Wellington High School, playing soccer this winter and flag football next spring for the Wolverines. In soccer, Fernandez is a midfielder. In flag football, she’s a receiver. But, at home and in Hollywood, she’s a ninja, because that’s what she visualized, and it actually materialized. Season 3 of American Ninja Warrior Junior is currently streaming on Peacock, available through many streaming platforms and apps, and at www. peacocktv.com.

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REAL ESTATE IS ALL ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS

Realtor Sophie Ghedin with three generations of the Wandell family. (L-R) Juliana Rose Wandell, Rosie Wandell, Rosalie Wandell and Ghedin.

Realtor Sophie Ghedin Recently Helped Three Generations Of The Wandell Family BY MIKE MAY

Sophie Ghedin, a Realtor with Keller Williams Realty Wellington, prides herself on developing ongoing relationships with her many clients — and that has led to Ghedin working with three generations of Wellington’s Wandell family: Rosie Wandell, her daughter and her mother-in-law. This unique business relationship and friendship among the four people

has seen to it that the three Wandells ended up as happy homeowners. Ghedin is thrilled to have three friends who are now also happy clients. “Rosie Wandell and I have been friends for a long time. She’s my physical therapist,” Ghedin recalled.“We started talking about her selling her house. I was able to help her sell the house rather quickly.”

That led to more real estate business for Ghedin with the Wandell family from Rosie’s daughter Juliana Rose Wandell and mother-in-law Rosalie Wandell. According to Ghedin, Rosie and her husband Eric lived in Lakefield West. They wanted to sell their house and find something smaller. So, Ghedin stepped in and delivered. wellington the magazine | december 2021 39


“We were ready to downsize, but we wanted to stay in the greater Wellington area. Sophie helped make it happen,” said Rosie, who has her own business as a physical therapist in Wellington. “We found a new home in the Arden community.” With Ghedin’s assistance, Rosie and Eric put their Lakefield West home on the market soon after the pandemic hit in the spring of 2020.The home sold in June. Ghedin played an integral role in finding a buyer and facilitating the sale. The entire process went so well that it got the attention of Rosie and Eric’s daughter, Juliana Rose Wandell. Juliana Rose had made plans to move north to Orlando in order to start her career, and she wanted to buy a house. Naturally, she turned to Ghedin for assistance. Not only was Juliana Rose buying a home, it was going to be newly built. Again, Ghedin stepped in and delivered. “I was really impressed how she sold my parents’ house so quickly, so I thought she could help me. And she did,” Juliana Rose said. “She was very helpful. She helped me make decisions on the floor plan and the location of the home. She gave me peace of mind throughout the entire experience. We closed in July of this year. She still stays in touch with me to check on the home. I love my home.” Juliana Rose said that she probably would not be in her current location and so pleased with the final outcome without the assistance from Ghedin. “I highly recommend Sophie as a Realtor, as I have seen her in action as a representative of both the seller and the buyer,” Juliana Rose said. One of the memorable aspects for 40

december 2021 | wellington the magazine

“Rosie Wandell and I have been friends for a long time. She’s my physical therapist. We started talking about her selling her house. I was able to help her sell the house rather quickly.” — Sophie Ghedin

Ghedin of working with Juliana Rose was her age. Juliana is just 18 years old. “She was my youngest ever client,” Ghedin said.“And probably my smartest. She’s a genius. She earned a dual bachelor’s degree at age 17.” Juliana Rose may be a computer engineering/computer science graduate from Florida Atlantic University, but she was a rookie in the world of real estate. Having helped two parts of the Wandell family, it was time for a “hat trick” of Wandell clients. As they say, great things happen in threes.The next member of the Wandell family that needed real estate assistance was the matriarch of the family, Rosalie Wandell, Eric’s mother. According to Ghedin, Rosalie had

been living in Binks Forest for 24 years and needed help selling her home so she could also move to the Arden community. Again, Ghedin stepped in and delivered. Naturally Rosalie followed the wellknown path and enrolled the services of Ghedin. Her house was put up for sale in mid-October, and Ghedin expects a quick sale. Rosalie has already purchased her new home in Arden.The closing was in early November. This new home is not far from where Rosie and Eric now live. “We’re thrilled that she’s living in Arden,” Rosie said. It was an easy decision for Rosalie to team up with Ghedin. “I was a Realtor for 26 years, so I know the business,” Rosalie said.“I trusted her. She did what she said she was going to do. She did it all in a timely manner.” Looking back, Rosie had the same strong, positive feelings about Ghedin. “Her personality clicks with me,” Rosie said.“I knew I was in good hands. She took care of me and my husband.” Not surprisingly, Rosie and Ghedin have a shared interest: Wellington’s tight-knit equestrian community. “Sophie is a para rider in dressage, and many of my physical therapy clients are riders,” Rosie said. “And I sell real estate to many people within the equestrian world because I understand their lives and needs,” Ghedin added. Clearly, Rosie Wandell and Sophie Ghedin share a common bond — and it all started with a massage. For more information about Sophie Ghedin, call (561) 236-1977 or visit https://sophieghedinrealtor.kw.com.


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DFS Lic #W505260 wellington the magazine | december 2021 41


EYE CARE for the Entire Family • MACULAR DEGENERATION • DIABETIC RETINOPATHY • CLINICAL TRIALS • CATARACTS • GLAUCOMA • DRY EYE • ADULT & PEDIATRIC OPHTHALMOLOGY • STRABISMUS

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Luxurious equestrian estate home on five plus acres with 4 horse barns in a gated community. The home has 8 bedrooms, 10.1 full bathrooms, 2 full kitchens, 2 bars, movie theater, exercise room, sauna, gameroom, and garage parking for up to 10 vehicles. Additionally, the home has a large heated pool and spa with a sundeck. Asking Price is $6,000,000.00. Also for rent at $28,000.00 per month.

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december 2021 | wellington the magazine


LOVING CARE FOR YOUR PETS

wellington | health

All Paws Animal Clinic Is A State-Of-The Art Veterinary Practice Located On State Road 7 STORY BY M. DENNIS TAYLOR | PHOTOS BY ABNER PEDRAZA

Dr. Patricia Forsythe, known as “Dr. Patty,” founded All Paws Animal Clinic in 2002.

At an age where many children’s idea of a future career involves tiaras or a cape, Dr. Patricia Forsythe of All Paws Animal Clinic knew she wanted to be a veterinarian. Planning on a career helping animals from the tender age of 5, she later graduated from the University of Delaware in 1981 and went on to the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, where she earned her veterinary degree in 1985. More than three decades later,“Dr. Patty” — as her staff and clients call her — still loves her chosen career path. “I love people and their pets, and after 36 years, being a veterinarian is the greatest profession for me,” said Forsythe, who ran a clinic in Broward County before opening All Paws Animal Clinic in Royal Palm Beach in 2002. With her successful practice, Forsythe loves the community she is a resident of and a business owner in. She appreciates that it is a pet-loving community with plenty of space devoted to dog parks for exercise. Forsythe also enjoys getaways to the Keys and days out on the water with her high school sweetheart, to whom she reestablished a relationship with and is now engaged. “We reconnected after all these years,” she said.“He has grown children, and my family is my pets. I have three dogs and a cat.The dogs are a Shih Tzu and mixes by the names of Sully, Gypsie and Tootsie, along with Pirate, the cat.” wellington the magazine | december 2021 45


wellington | health

“I love people and their pets, and after 36 years, being a veterinarian is the greatest profession for me.” — Dr. Patricia Forsythe

All Paws Animal Clinic has a full-service lab and pharmacy.

As a complete, state-of-the-art facility, Forsythe said that her practice has great follow through and is interested in the health and well-being of pets for a lifetime. Believing the adage that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, All Paws strives to avoid many future problems with proper care. “We are interested in dogs’ dentistry and problems that are below the gumlines,” Forsythe said. “We have digital xray and ultrasound, and an in-house lab, and we do diagnostics in house.” Forsythe explained that on average, pets age about seven years for every one year that people age, so early detection of health problems is very important. She said that it’s crucial to have thorough health examinations once a year. This way, gradual onset of disease in seemingly healthy pets won’t go unnoticed. By the time symptoms do appear, it may be difficult and costly to diagnose and treat the ailment, so annual physicals are a necessity. The diagnostic testing provided inhouse at All Paws is the most sensitive and accurate method of early detection of any type of underlying health 46

december 2021 | wellington the magazine

problems. The laboratory tests can detect blood disorders, kidney and liver disease, diabetes, infection, thyroid disorders and other hormonal problems. Many of these conditions can be prevented, controlled or completely reversed if diagnosed early. The facility is among a growing list of veterinarians utilizing cold laser therapy as a means to help patients with acute and chronic medical problems. Commonly known as low-level laser therapy or LLLT, cold or soft laser is a form of photo therapy that involves the application of specific types of light to injuries and lesions to stimulate healing. The effects of LLLT are photochemical, not thermal, often making a pet’s healing process shorter and less painful.The therapy is done at the clinic as an outpatient procedure.There is no sedation required, and it takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes and is very affordable. Cold laser therapy has been shown to be effective with the treatment of a range of medical conditions. The clinic’s vaccination recommendation is consistent with the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA).

There are guidelines for canines and felines that are required by law. Other vaccinations may be recommended based on the pet’s lifestyle. Parasites, flea and tick prevention and heartworms can also be combated with medication. “Our clients are our family, and we have a wonderful, caring staff we are blessed with,” Forsythe said. “We have great follow-through to get back to them with the answers for their pet.” Forsythe added that the clinic treats common skin conditions so prevalent in South Florida dogs. “We follow your pet throughout their life providing dental care and extractions, if needed. We do the wellness blood panels and follow their health from year to year,” Forsythe said. Vicki Deitz, the practice manager at All Paws, added that the clinic carries Hill’s pet food, which is specifically formulated to the needs of the dog, as well as the flea, tick and heartworm medications that can help with the many pests common to the South Florida climate. Deitz explained that the facility has a complete pharmacy, stocking the majority of all pets’ pharmaceutical needs. She also pointed out that the practice has been voted “Best in the West,” three times in recent years. All Paws Animal Clinic is located at 1011 N. State Road 7 in Royal Palm Beach. For more info., call (561) 7909225 or visit www.allpawsanimal. com.


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wellington the magazine | december 2021 47


Everything You Need For Your Holiday Celebrations!

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wellington | table

BRIGHT COLORS & DELICIOUS FLAVORS Eat Like A Local At For The Luv Of Food, Which Opened Recently In The Original Wellington Mall BY CALLIE SHARKEY

Foodies know that the best way to find memorable meals is to find where the locals go. For those who grew up in Wellington, nothing says local more than the original Wellington Mall. One of the newest additions to the familiar site is a smart little café called For the Luv of Food. The menu is filled with bright flavors and lots of healthy options, but a highlight is the variety of taste-tempting bubble teas. Not sure what makes a bubble tea? Owner Kim Seow is happy to provide some insight and help you find the perfect drink to match your mood. “The whole concept of bubble tea is milk-based, so it’s creamy, but not heavy or as thick as a smoothie,” Seow said. “We have the milk-based ones and the fruit teas, that’s the difference.They also come with boba toppings, like a chewy tapioca boba or mango popping boba.” These refreshing teas are highlighted by the boba pearls that burst with flavor in a way so satisfying it reminds one of finding the prize in the bottom of a cereal box. Popular bubble teas at For the Luv of Food are the taro (a sweet and delightfully purple concoction), mango dream, and strawberries and cream. “Bubble tea people often ask me, ‘Why doesn’t this taste like the ones I find down the street?’ I explain that it’s all about the ingredients. I’m very picky with our products and won’t accept anything that tastes chalky or artificial,” Seow said.“It is lighter than a milkshake — creamy but light. We also do almond milk and oat milk for people who want the creamy taste, but not the milk.”

FOR THE

OF FOOD, LLC

(Clockwise from top left) The banh mi sub is a popular special on the lunch menu; bubble teas, also called boba teas, are milk-based treats that are creamy, but not heavy or thick, and include tapioca pearls at the bottom; salads and other fresh menu options are available at the eatery; bubble teas come in a wide variety of flavors, including honeydew; Kim Seow’s homemade chai bread is her own personal recipe, available by the slice or the loaf; a guava pastry is a light way to start the day; and a refreshing watermelon and green apple tea with tapioca bites and fruity bubbles at the bottom. wellington the magazine | december 2021 49


For the Luv of Food owner and food lover Kim Seow.

Light, refreshing options are a musthave in South Florida, and Seow’s café also is a great resource for those dealing with dietary restrictions. Instead of being bored with the same flavor profiles, she has made it her mission to bring new, fun flavors that anyone can enjoy. “Years ago, my diet changed a lot. There are things I cannot eat, and I didn’t know what to do with myself,”

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december 2021 | wellington the magazine

Seow said.“That’s how I learned about gluten free and dairy free. So, we are sure to offer gluten free and vegan options.We are trying to make everything healthier but tasty, because if something doesn’t taste good, I know I can’t eat it.” With Jamaican and Chinese heritage, Seow’s passion for food developed to include signature recipes for a made-

from-scratch Asian aoli, cilantro lime, Asian vinaigrette and jerk sauce. She embraced a menu of subs, wraps and sandwiches, but quickly found that the healthier cauliflower crust paninis stole the customers’ hearts. “The cauliflower panini is off the chain!” laughed one repeat customer stopping by to grab a quick lunch.“Oh, and the matcha tea — you have got to try the matcha tea.” Grab-and-go meals are ready for those who find themselves in a rush, but don’t be surprised to find locals asking for specials like a banh mi sub or Seow’s one-of-a-kind chai bread.The latter is often ordered by the loaf. “I made chai bread for a family dinner years ago,” Seow recalled. “I saw something on the internet, played with the ingredients and recipe, and then made it into a bread. Now our family always requests it, and my kids said I had to sell it. The minute I tried it, people started ordering it by the loaf.”


Seow originally opened For the Luv of Food in a different location two years ago, but still customers follow and order some of their favorite goods, like brilliant purple ube cupcakes.After two years in Royal Palm Beach, Seow finds herself finally at home, back in Wellington. “I’ve always wanted to be here. I grew up here. I graduated from Wellington High School,” she said. “I’ve been a Realtor for 22 years out here, but I’ve always loved food. I’m always the one cooking — everyone who comes over, they know they’re gonna eat. My friends said if you love it so much, why wouldn’t you just open a place?” Seow has always been inspired by “mom-and-pop” eateries and supported them whenever possible, but she never expected to be running one. “We are food people, we travel everywhere. We did a trip when my boys were younger and went from Maine to New York,” she recalled. “It was literally

wellington | table

Ube cupcakes are a burst of color and flavor.

based on restaurants I found — momand-pop places I’d researched.” Since opening its doors at the end of September, Seow continues to adapt the menu and explore a love of textures and color while listening to what her customers want. Her growing team not only laughs like a family, but also incorporates family, including her talented and experienced brother-in-law, Rod

Seow, who has been a chef for years. For the Luv of Food is located in the original Wellington Mall at 12794 W. Forest Hill Blvd., Suite 5B. The café is currently open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. To learn more about the most recent offerings, find For the Luv of Food on Facebook and Instagram @LuvofFoodRPB, or call the café at (561) 408-2113.

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wellington the magazine | december 2021 51




Library: The pièce de résistance is this private library just off the family room. Escape to work or Living Room: Beautiful architectural details are center stage in this custom to just watch the football game in this cozy room with a stone fireplace and high-beamed ceilings.

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december 2021 | wellington the magazine

living room, featuring a wood-beamed coffered ceiling, a working fireplace, a specialty inlaid tile floor, arched doorways and a magnificent view of the pool.


wellington | real estate

BEAUTIFUL HOME IN GREENVIEW SHORES This Unique, Custom Home In Central Wellington Is Expertly Designed With Magnificent Details Throughout PHOTOS BY LUX PHOTOGRAPHY AND VIDEO

The moment you enter this Greenview Shores home, you know that it is going to be magnificent! Every detail has been meticulously designed by the owner and reflects a sophisticated, yet rustic taste. It features a spacious split floor plan that includes four bedrooms, three baths, an impressive library and too many upgrades to list. Enter the front door and you see the rustic elegance of the living room complete with a fireplace, and dining room with ceilings that have inlaid wooden beams.The gourmet kitchen features custom cabinets and coffered ceilings. The kitchen and breakfast bar are combined with the family room to make one big great room — all with beautiful views of the custom-landscaped pool.The custom library is complete with wood cabinets and a unique fireplace.

Front Elevation: Beautiful landscaping and custom lighting give this Greenview Shores home amazing curb appeal.

Kitchen: The custom, gourmet kitchen with an eat-in area plus a breakfast bar connects to the family room to create the open flow of the house. Wooden coffered ceilings from the living room and dining room continue into this open space.

Pool: An elegant outdoor oasis features a lovely pool with a spa and custom landscaping with specialty lighting, making this unique home like a retreat in paradise. wellington the magazine | december 2021 55


wellington | real estate

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Donald and Maureen Gross are seasoned real estate professionals with Keller Williams Wellington and trusted members of the western communities. With a combined 20-plus years of experience, they have diligently worked together to support hundreds of individuals and families achieve their real estate aspirations. Donald and Maureen have built out one of the most trusted real estate teams in the industry in large part due to their active participation within the community. Clients stem from friends, neighbors and the many respected community organizations they support. Donald has held executive positions with leading organizations, including the Wellington Rotary Club and Wellington Historical Society. Maureen has held various executive level memberships with organizations such as the Wellington Women’s Club, the Palms West Community Foundation, the American Cancer Society and Realtors Take the Runway. Few real estate teams are as well versed in the neighborhoods, schools and lifestyles of Palm Beach County. Residents of the communities they serve, they continue sharing their passion for the lifestyle by helping identify a client’s real estate aspirations and expertly guiding them through the transaction. Call Donald and Maureen Gross today at (561) 723-8461 to discuss how they can transform your real estate dreams into reality. Learn more about Donald and Maureen Gross at

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www.ShultsOrthodontics.com 56

december 2021 | wellington the magazine


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celebrate | wellington

PROFESSIONAL LEADERSHIP FOR YOUR HOMETOWN

Jim Barnes has worked at the village since 2003.

Village Manager Jim Barnes Is Wrapping Up His First Year As Wellington’s Top Official BY DEBORAH WELKY

The Village of Wellington began its 25th anniversary year with a new village manager, Jim Barnes, who is now celebrating his first anniversary as the village’s top official. Since incorporation in 1996, Wellington has had three permanent village managers. While the first, the late Charlie Lynn, was recruited from Kentucky shortly after the village’s incorporation, the other two have both been hired

from within existing village leadership — Paul Schofield, who took over for Lynn in 2008, and Barnes, who most recently served as Schofield’s deputy village manager. Barnes first arrived in Wellington in 2003, and he has served in a number of key village positions. “My professional career has been a series of opportunities found — a series of right times and right places,” Barnes explained.

Barnes, 55, was born in Manila, in the Philippines, and moved to Palm Beach County in 1977. He attended St. Vincent Ferrer School in Delray Beach and graduated from Cardinal Newman High School in West Palm Beach, receiving an associate’s degree from Palm Beach Junior College, now Palm Beach State College, and a bachelor’s degree in geography from Florida Atlantic University. wellington the magazine | december 2021

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celebrate | wellington

“I am grateful to everyone along the way who afforded me the many opportunities from which I have benefited, and I am hopeful that I left every stop a little better than I found it.” — Village Manager Jim Barnes Village Manager Jim Barnes can often be found out in the community, meeting with residents young and old. Here, he is shown during a visit to a local school.

However, he has learned as much from life in the workforce as he did in the classroom. “My first job was as a clerk at a Marshalls department store, well before ‘brand names for less’ [Marshalls’ slogan] was as cool as it is now,” Barnes recalled. “I learned that it’s best to get to work early, because if you’re early, you’re on time, and if you’re on time, you’re late. I also learned that no job is too menial, and, lastly, that ‘love at first sight’ does exist.” It was while working at Marshalls that Barnes met a girl named Kim, a Palm Beach County native.Though only 16 at the time, he knew she was “the one.” “I knew right away that she was a catch,” Barnes said. “It took her four years to notice me, but that’s OK. I play the long game. The rest, as they say, is history — we just celebrated our 31st wedding anniversary.” After graduating from FAU, Barnes went to work as a planner for Palm Beach County’s Planning, Zoning & 62 december 2021 | wellington the magazine

Building Department. But he didn’t stay long. “Within two years, I was lured to the private sector and worked for a multidisciplinary consulting firm on planning, environmental and land development projects,” Barnes said.“That afforded me the opportunity to work for local, state and federal agencies, as well as for private clients.” But his time with Palm Beach County wasn’t quite finished. “I eventually returned to work for Palm Beach County’s Facilities Development & Operations Department and, in 2003, started my career in Wellington as the assistant director of community services,” Barnes said.“What brought me to Wellington can be summed up in four words — Paul Schofield, Tom Wenham. Mr. Schofield presented me with an opportunity and, once I accepted, Mayor Tom Wenham reinforced why I made the right decision.” Since then, Barnes has collected a number of post-degree credentials. He

is a certified planner with an advanced specialty certification in environmental planning by the American Institute of Certified Planners, a certified parks and recreation professional by the National Recreation and Park Association, and a credentialed manager by the International City/County Management Association. In 2005, two years after accepting his first job with the village, the Barnes family moved to Wellington. “We were looking at locations, and it became increasingly clear that Wellington was a special place. Our children attended Wellington Elementary School, Wellington Landings Middle School and Wellington High School,” Barnes said. “They participated in co-curricular and extracurricular activities at school, as well as in community programs offered by the village. Now, having experienced it first-hand, I can say with conviction that Wellington is truly a great place for families. Notwithstanding its growth, it still remains a close-knit community.”


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december 2021 | wellington the magazine

Monica Diesti


celebrate | wellington

“It’s great to work with a group of people who know their collective ‘why.’ The last 19 months have been challenging, and they continued to deliver best-inclass services to our residents and customers. I thank them for their amazing energy and effort.” — Village Manager Jim Barnes

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Today, with their family and their hometown firmly behind them, son Kyle, 24, is a graduate student at the University of Michigan, and daughter Devyn, 21, is a senior at the University of Central Florida. Barnes himself has advanced as well. Since his initial hiring, he has held several leadership positions with the village — deputy director of environmental and engineering services, director of parks and recreation, deputy director of operations, director of operations, assistant village manager and deputy village manager. “Then, I was fortunate enough to be selected by the council to succeed Paul Schofield as village manager,” Barnes said. “I am grateful to everyone along the way who afforded me the many opportunities from which I have benefited, and I am hopeful that I left every stop a little better than I found it.” That goal — to leave things in an improved state — is just one of the many mantras Barnes lives by.To live with authenticity is another. “It’s important to be yourself,” he said. “It’s important to be exactly who you are, not just a replica of someone else or a filtered-out version of who you think other people want you to be.As a child, you are who you are, and you don’t care. That’s important. Authenticity — the real you — is what builds connections

and relationships. It’s also important to just be happy! As a child, you just default to ‘happy’ and, as an adult, you can and you should. Your mood is actually up to you. It is a choice you can make any time of any day in any situation. A smile is a powerful little movement. It relieves stress, reduces blood pressure and can change your mood.” Barnes is very grateful for Wellington’s hardworking staff members, particularly after these difficult pandemic years. “It’s great to work with a group of people who know their collective ‘why,’” Barnes said.“The last 19 months have been challenging, and they continued to deliver best-in-class services to our residents and customers. I thank them for their amazing energy and effort.” He also had thanks for Wellington’s residents and many visitors. “To the residents, I’d say that the leadership of Wellington wants to continue to create an environment in which both our residents and businesses can thrive,” Barnes said.“It takes all of us working together to make that happen.Together with you, I am happy to call Wellington home… To visitors, whether you are here for business or pleasure, we hope you were able to experience all our great hometown has to offer.”

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VILLAGE COUNCIL LEFT TO RIGHT TOP

Michael J. Napoleone, Tanya Siskind, Michael Drahos LEFT TO RIGHT BOTTOM

Vice Mayor John T. McGovern, Mayor Anne Gerwig

Happy holidays to you, your family, and your neighbors! Whether you’re putting up a tree, lighting a menorah, or celebrating Kwanzaa— we send infinite cheerful wishes to everyone observing a celebration. After a challenging year, we treasure the beauty this time of year holds by bringing people together to share their love. On behalf of the Village of Wellington, we wish you a cheerful end to 2021 and a prosperous New Year.


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