Page 1


FISH


Plant City’s Hometown Plumber You Can Depend On

FREDDIE MULLIS PLUMBING, INC. (Not F.C. Mullis Plumbing)

Repipe Experts Family Owned & Operated Since 1984

WE GUARANTEE ALL OUR WORK Lic. # RF0066444

BONDED & INSURED Lifetime Plant City Resident

Fast Service

-Leaks Repaired

-Toilets

-Sewer Lines

-Faucets

-Drain Cleaning

-Disposals

-Water Heaters

813-754-0317 www.freddiemullisplumbing.com

4

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Only Plumber Recommended By The


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

5


NO CREDIT *

REFUSED

R

Prices and offers effective Feb 9 - Feb. 29, 2016.

50 OFF

UP TO

%

CHOOSE FROM CAFE CHOCOLATE OR COBBLESTONE GREY!

emma 90” sofa

SAVE 20195 117837/40

67”­loveseat 117838/41­$378

$

398

reg. $599.95

PLUS SAVINGS UP TO 75 OFF Discontinued, scratch & dents, floor samples, %

odds & ends, and one-of-a-kind merchandise 703 South Evers PLANT CITY•813-754-3547 MON.­–­FRI.­10AM–8PM­•­SAT.­10AM-7PM­SUN.­12PM-5PM

*­Certain­restrictions­and­exclusions­apply.­Applicants­must­meet­all­State­and­Federal­identification­verification­requirements­and­State­age­requirements.­ Offer­not­available­to­applicants­in­default­on­a­Badcock­account­or­in­an­active­bankruptcy.­Offer­valid­through­February­29,­2016­at­participating­stores­only.

6

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

7


AMERICAN BOARD CERTIFIED

CONTENTS February 2016 | Volume 15 Issue 02 | focusplantcity.com

PLANT CITY’S URGENT CARE & WEIGHT LOSS Urgent Care

Weight Loss

• No Appointment Necessary!

• Medically Supervised

• Most Insurance Accepted

• Vitamin Injections

• Experienced Urgent Care Physicians

• Diet Plans

• On Site X-Rays

• Appetite Suppressants

• Meds & Injection Included in the total price • Member of the American Society of Bariatric Physicians

• EKG & Labs • Stiches • Sore Throats • Infections • Physicals • Occupational Medicine

We love sharing the words of our newly crowned Strawberry Queen and her court each year in the February issue. And needless to say, the cover shot is one of our best always. Beautiful girls with a desire to represent their wonderful community… truly, we are blessed.

• Much More!

Reynolds

Wheeler

Davis

Alexander Whitehall

Baker NOW CARE

$50.00 OFF initial WEIGHT LOSS consultation

Offer expires 03/15/16

1009 W. Baker St. Plant City, FL 33563 813-759-1232 nowcareclinic.com Mon-Fri 8am-8pm • Sat & Sun 9am-5pm 8

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Our largest issue of the year is packed with good news of local folks doing great things at events that benefit others. In addition to Celebrity Chef, the Chamber Chairman’s Banquet, and other berry sweet events, we also have the story of Ellen Clendening Cannon’s 100th birthday and the Kirkin’ o the Tartan celebration at First Presbyterian Church here in town. Enjoy learning a little more about your neighbors!

50 Spotlight: 2016 FSF Queen and Court

• Sprains

WEIGHT LOSS FINANCING AVAILABLE CALL FOR DETAILS

18 Local

65 Feature: Strawberry Farmers

Since strawberry farmers are such an important part of our local (and national) economy, we’ve included the backstories in this month’s collection: Wishnatzki Farms and D & K Farm. You’ll love knowing how hard work and dedication to family has made such an impact in our berry sweet town.

75 Dining: Tasty Strawberry Dishes Oh, my! Make sure you have plenty of strawberries in your own fridge so you can prepare some of the tasty specialties we’re sharing this month. Warning: Be sure you also have whipped cream, ice cream, oatmeal and friends over to share. Umum good!

82 Business: Helping Hands, Caring Hearts

Helping Hands Caring Hearts of Plant City offers in home care services for the elderly & seniors living in Plant City, Lakeland, Brandon, FL & surrounding areas! If your family has a need for quality care, this company will find a way to help.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

9


10

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


LETTER FROM THE

PUBLISHER

One of the wonderful things about living in a town with deep generational roots involves the stories we encounter of hard work, commitment, and family bonds. Such is Plant City.

Each year as our writers compile and write content for our special February issue, their excitement overflows in anticipation of the Florida Strawberry Festival. As they meet and become friends with the folks who love our berry industry, they become even more engaged with the business of the Winter Strawberry Capitol of the World. This month’s magazine is packed with good news and great photos of dedicated people and committed organizations that enhance life (and history) here. We hope you’ll share the link to a few of those on your own

social media pages. Everybody loves reading the positive! We are also a community filled with some amazing young folks, like our Florida Strawberry Festival Queen and Court Members. The February cover shoot and story continues to be one of those we enjoy preparing most. Beauty, brains, and belief in service to others…these special ladies will represent us well in 2016. And to Ellen Ethel Clendening Cannon, who recently celebrated her 100th birthday, surrounded by loads of family and friends—we say, “Thank You” for our newest Plant City holiday and for your life, well-lived, and muchloved. You are beautiful, indeed. We encourage you—be an ambassador for our community and our world-renown Festival. It’s the least any of us can do to share the blessing of the good life here in eastern Hillsborough County. And if you eat today, be sure to thank a farmer!

Warmest Regards, Mike Floyd

CREDITS Got a story idea? Looking to advertise in Focus? Contact us for more information. Floyd Publications, Inc. 702 W. Dr. MLK Jr. Blvd. Plant City, FL 33563

by advertisers. All letters and their contents sent to Focus Magazine become the sole property of Floyd Publications, Inc and may be reproduced thereof. All views expressed in all articles are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Floyd Publications, Inc. Use or duplication of material used in this publication is prohibited without approved written consent from Floyd Publications, Inc.

Office 813.707.8783 Fax 813.764.0990

Publisher Mike Floyd mike@floydpublications.com

www.focusplantcity.com

Sales Dede Floyd dede@floydpublications.com

Standards of accuracy: The goal of the writers at FOCUS Magazine is to provide heart-warming stories that are accurate from the start. Being human, however, we sometimes make mistakes. Please forgive us.

Managing Editor Cheryl Johnston cjohnston@floydpublications.com

So if you notice anything that is incorrect, then please do not hesitate to contact the editorial department and inform it about the fact error. To do so, call (813) 7078783 or e-mail editorial@floydpublications.com. The staff will fix the error in a timely manner.

Distribution Tony DeVane

FOCUS Magazine is published monthly and is available through local Plant City businesses, restaurants and many local venues.

Art Director Anthony Sassano asassano@floydpublications.com

Staff Writers Cheryl Johnston | Heather Davis Deana Garrison | Andria Barrios | Sherrie Mueller Contributors Gil Gott | Jo-An Lusk | Nate Davis Candy Owens | Natalie Sweet | Victoria Srgo Mike Goodwine | Kristen Campbell

Advertisers warrant and represent the descriptions of their products advertised are true in all respects. Focus Magazine assumes no responsibility for claims made

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

11


12

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


INFANT DIAGNOSED WITH FAILURE TO THRIVE HELPED WITH CHIROPRACTIC The December 17, 2015, issue of the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a study documenting the case of an infant who was medically diagnosed with failure to thrive being helped with chiropractic. The authors of the study describe failure to thrive (FTT) as infants who cannot maintain growth or have inadequate growth. The condition is fairly common affecting approximately 3-10% of children attending care in a hospital setting and 5-10% of children attended to in a primary care setting. This may be due to disease, or not enough calories in the infant’s diet or even an infant that burns too many calories. The study reports that 80% of all cases have no known underlying medical conditions for the FTT. Because of the lack of clear medical treatment, the study

reports that many parents turn to alternatives such as chiropractic, in these situations. In this case, a 5-monthold infant girl with a medical diagnosis of “failure to thrive” was brought to the chiropractor. The infant girl was also suffering with inconsolable crying, chronic diarrhea, and was dangerously underweight. The infant’s mother reported that her daughter’s problems began at the age of two months when she was brought to the pediatrician for a stomach virus, oral thrush, and loose green stools. Medication was prescribed but was ineffective as the infant continued to suffer from green-colored diarrhea and weight loss for the next six weeks. The problem worsened with the medical recommendations. A chiropractic examination revealed the presence of

subluxations in the infant’s upper neck. Subluxations can cause interference to normal nerve function and have an effect on overall physiology. Chiropractic adjustments were begun to correct the subluxations and restore normal nerve function. After the the infant’s first chiropractic adjustment, her mother noted that her daughter slept several hours continuously, without waking up and crying. After the third adjustment, the child stopped the daily screaming, and her stools started to return to normal. After one week of care, the child had gained 2 oz. Each successive week, the child’s rate of weight gain continued to increase until the child had returned to a normal weight. A five year follow-up showed that the child was normal, in good heath, and properly developed for her age. In their conclusion, the authors wrote, “ This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in infants with a failure to thrive.

Dr. Brenda Dukes • Chiropractic Physician 752-2524 • 2401 Walden Woods Drive, Plant City, FL 33566 www.dukeschiropractichealth.com

Dr. Dukes encourages you to write her with any questions concerning chiropractic care. FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

13


Former Strawberry Festival Queens Former Queens gather each year at the Florida Strawberry Festival Queen’s Scholarship Pageant for a group picture: Tani’s for Desserts Tani’s welcomed Fox 13’s Charlie Belcher of Charlie Belcher & Friends on January 21 with one of her custom-crafted cakes during his remote broadcast at the Plant City bakery and dessert dining area.

Good Egg Award The Plant City Chamber of Commerce awarded Nancy Miller and Karen Griggsby the December “Good Egg Award.” This was the first time this award was presented jointly since its inception. Morgan Davis Strawberry Short Stories Take some time to check out the Strawberry Short Stories by Plant City native Morgan Davis on Facebook this month and purchase your $10 collectible calendar. www.facebook.com/Strawberry-ShortStories-104635393253207/ 14

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Seated: Jessi Rae Varnum 2014, Erica Der Hall 2003, Ruby Jean Barker Redman 1953, Kayla Drawdy Sherrard 1999, Courtney Clark Swantek 1995, Kay Newsome Varnum 1985 Standing: Kellie Hinson Morrow 2001, Kelsey Fry 2013, Lauren Der McNair 2009, Sandy Howard liess 1984, Kristen Smith Epps 2008, Samantha Sun 2015, Nancy Wright Murchie 1982, Sheryl Simmons Boggs 1975, Hannah Hodge Benton 2006, Stephanie St. Martin Bikowski 1997, Kaitlin Sharer Butson 2004, Sherrie Chambers Mueller 1971, Silvia Azorin Dodson 1968, Linda Scanlon Heath 1972

Tomlin Middle School FFA Congratulations to the Tomlin Middle School FFA Horse Judging Team students who won the state FFA title recently. This is quite an accomplishment for middleschoolers! L-R are: Kayla Williams, Rebecca Pereira, Delaney Ferrell, Angelic Alex.

Florida Strawberry Festival Association to Receive Coveted Award Plant City Photo Archives and History Center President Ed Verner has announced that the long established Florida Strawberry Festival Association will receive the organization’s top honor, the Heritage Award, at the annual Soiree, its awards banquet, Thursday, March 31, 2016. The selection committee reached a unanimous decision in support of Association, founded in 1930, for the enduring and significant role it has played in the greater Plant City community for over eighty-five years.


808 S. Woodrow Wilson St. Plant City, FL 33563 Located in the PLANT CITY INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT

Lease rate :$8.00 sq. ft. (IG) no hidden CAM fees

15,000 SF Warehouse w/Office Space FOR LEASE Warehouse/Office space close to home, great neighborhood

PROPERTY FEATURES include: • Warehouse space located in business park on S. Woodrow Wilson St, just North of Airport Road, just East of Alexander Street • Unit is ready to occupy with 150 SF air-conditioned office with restroom • Metal building with Air Conditioned Office - built in 2000 • Unit size is 25’ wide x 60’ deep, office space is 12’ wide x 25’ deep • 16’ to 22’ clear ceiling height • Each unit has front and rear entrance doors along with grade-level roll-up door

For information, contact Jeff Harrison | 813-892-8135 | jeff@turnercole.com FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

15


L

Brothers Ted Lee and Matt Lee prepare a food demonstration for the crowd of over 300 people. They expressed gratitude for being selected to be a part of the Celebrity Chef to benefit the United Food Bank.

Guests mingled with one another before dinner and enjoyed a vast array of Silent Auction items. Donated gifts included, but were not limited to, restaurant and merchant gift cards, gift baskets, a bike, a Yeti cooler, Jules Burt Paintings, sports autographed pictures and memorabilia, jewelry, and tickets to theme parks. A live auction featured dinner for six at the Corner Store in Plant City as well as dinner for six for a meal in Charleston prepared by the Lee Bros. Raffle tickets were sold for chances to win gifts. John Lynch of Brandon was excited to be the highest bidder of the dinner for six in Charleston. He bought the opportunity to have a private meal in Charleston catered by the Lee Bros. for $2500. He exclaimed, “Forget the money . . .It is

all about the cause! I am Charleston Bound!” Christine Miller was excited with the evening’s record-breaking results. She offered, “We should make close to $80,000 on this event to help feed the hungry in our area. I am so grateful for all the support we have received.” Star Distribution was the event’s Presenting Sponsor. Platnum Sponsors included Gordon Food Service and Unity in the Community. Other individuals and community businesses also joined in as sponsors. Congratulations to the Food Bank on the success of Celebrity Chef and for all the organization does to help end hunger in our community! And a big thanks to the Lee Brothers for a wonderful demonstration.

8TH ANNUAL

CELEBRITY CHEF DINNER LEE BROTHERS COOKING DEMONSTRATION BRINGS CHARLESTON TO PLANT CITY BY SHERRIE MUELLER

Y

ear after year, the Annual Celebrity Chef Dinner keeps getting bigger and better! Despite rainy weather, more than 300 people attended the Eighth Annual upscale fundraiser to benefit the United Food Bank of Plant City. Chef brothers Ted and Matt Lee, “The Lee Bros.”, brought Southern dishes Charleston style to the delight of the guests who gathered for a delicious meal and great local cause. Served at the John R. Trinkle Center on the Hillsborough Community College in Plant City, the evening opened with a welcome by Brian West, food bank board member. Brian introduced Roxanne Wilder, who emceed from that point forward. Roxanne has served as anchor, host and reporter for radio and television stations.

16

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Carole Wright chaired the event and was assisted by Co-Chair Leigh Scott, Christine Miller, Director of the United Food Bank, and a committee of volunteers. South Florida Baptist Hospital’s 911 Catering prepared the meal from a menu and recipes provided by the Lee Bros. The night’s culinary delights included Smothered Pork Chops, Salmon, Sweet Potatoes with Sorghum Marshmallows, Brussels Sprouts with Benne and Bacon, Salad, Bread, and a dessert choice of Cheesecake with a Strawberry glaze or Bread Pudding with Pineapple. The food was served buffet style with ample servings for all. The attractively decorated tables featured centerpieces comprised of canned food, ribbon and flowers by All A Bloom Florist.

Aimee Solomon and Jim Scott sold raffle tickets for prizes to benefit the United Food Bank.

John Lynch (center) is all smiles to personally meet Ted and Matt Lee. John, of Brandon, purchased in the live auction a meal for six in Charleston prepared by the Lee Brothers


CONGRATULATIONS

Kassandra Figueroa ON MAKING TOP 10

Isn’t it beautiful? Let’s keep it that way!

2000 E Baker St, Plant City, FL 33563 (813) 752-4171 www.jarrettscottford.com FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

17


L

Don’t miss the chance to meet multi-talented Morgan Davis while he’s home in Plant City to market his 2016 Strawberry Short Stories during the Florida Strawberry Festival.

MORGAN DAVIS CREATOR OF STRAWBERRY SHORT STORIES

BY CHERYL JOHNSTON | PHOTO COURTESY OF MORGAN DAVIS

T

he multi-talented Plant City native Morgan Davis is ready for the Florida Strawberry Festival with his 2016 “Strawberry Short Stories” calendar, and it’s one you won’t want to miss. Since Davis, 25, graduated from Plant City High School in 2009, he’s been living his dream, performing, writing, and doing his artwork. After researching strawberries, he decided to model his calendar after an older California Raisins publication. With sales of 500 calendars in the first two days outside the gate of last year’s Festival,

18

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Davis has obviously found a niche. “I’ve done other forms of writing prior to comic strip,” he shared, “but wanted to create something all ages could enjoy. I thought it would be fun to involve my hometown and its beloved fruit. And I want people to have my stuff affordably. I love it when customers look forward to the next project.” “I’ve learned people like anyone who is doing something original,” Davis said. “I always liked writing in school and wanted to create stories, even out of games. When I watch TV, I think how to make the storyline different. I’m a fan of

Marvel Comics, Spiderman, Xmen and anything with action.” To date, Davis has created 34 comics, 12 last year, 12 this, and 10 waiting in the wings for the 2017 version. Each issue also advertises 24 sponsors with business ads, two per month, and money-saving coupons in the back. “I like to create something folks can use in more ways than one,” he explained. “And everyone likes to save money, right?” In addition to the two Strawberry Short Story calendars so far, he’s also published a young adult trilogy, Prescribed Life (Amazon.com). Davis

makes the calendars for our Festival but hopes eventually to do books and coloring books featuring the famous strawberries. He lives now in Seattle, but since 2013 has traveled six months each year. He’s visited every state except Hawaii and is a huge “Into the Wild” television show fan. His favorite spots thus far are Portland, Milwaukee, and the national parks Zion, Bryce and Denali. As often as possible, Davis returns to see his parents, grandparents and brothers Jesse and Aaron Starr, who all own businesses in Plant City. In Seattle he works at a hotel and sings, writes and plays folk music on guitar and mandolin. “I just started playing music as a kid,” he offered. “Writing music is a whole ‘nother piece of the puzzle. Songs get a quick reaction from people where novels take six months to write and get published. Then folks need time to read them. I really like writing and performing live music, but not necessarily recording it.” The artist looks forward to his Festival visit. “Whenever I come home, I realize what a really great environment Plant City was and is for growing up.” He continued, “Lots of influences here made me become more disciplined, because many people are very driven and have good intentions. This is what I miss most when I’m away – good honest and genuinely nice people who care about others.” His Strawberry Short Stories events schedule includes: • March 4 - Corner Store, 11AM2PM for live music, calendar sales & signing. • March 5 – Youth Parade - Giveaway 20 calendars • March 5 – Revelation Ice Cream Co. in Brandon, 6-9PM, live music, sales & signin • March 8 – Giveaway 20 calendars @ Grand Parade before booth sales at FSF • March 8 – Big Dogs Patio, 8PM12AM for Open Mic, songs w/Dale; sales/signing Davis welcomes inquiries and e-mail orders at strawberrycomics@gmail.com or through message at Strawberry Short Stories on Facebook.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

19


L

2016 FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL QUEEN’S SCHOLARSHIP PAGEANT

BY SHERRIE MUELLER

H

aley Riley was selected from a field of 23 contestants to represent Plant City and the Florida Strawberry Festival as the 2016 Queen. Held before a packed crowd on January 23, 2016 at the Grimes Family Agricultural Center on the Florida Strawberry Festival grounds, the pageant was sponsored by the Plant City Lions Club. The daughter of William and Heather Riley is a Durant High School junior and active FFA member who competes in speaking contests and shows livestock. Emceeing the scholarship pageant was Dan Shaffer, the Morning Anchor at ABC Action News; and Nancy Wright Murchie, 1982 Strawberry Queen. Coleman Davis of the sponsoring Lions Club opened the evening with prayer and Angie Zovodmy sang the National Anthem. Five very qualified out-oftown judges had the task of selecting the Queen and four additional court members. Twenty-five percent of the

20

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

contestants’ scores were from personal interviews held the afternoon prior to the contest. During the pageant, contestants gave a timed 30-second “commercial” for their sponsor, which accounted for 15% of the total score. The remaining 30% of the score was calculated during the Casual Wear and Evening Gowns portion of the program. Ten girls with the highest scores were named semifinalists. These included: Alex Aponte, Kassandra Figueroa, Kendra Allen, Morgan Gaudens, Haley Riley, Ashlyn Yarbrough, Carley Smith, Abigail Miller, Ashtyn Steele, and Kendale Sellers. Those ten were then asked an identical impromptu question as judging continued to select the five finalists. This year’s question was: “In preparing for this pageant, I’m sure you have gained new knowledge from all the facts you have studied. Share with us one new thing you learned either about Plant City OR the Florida Strawberry Festival?” From the semifinalists’ responses and their overall

look and stage presence, the 2016 Queen and Court were selected. While scores were being tabulated over 20 former queens wowed the crowd in a choreographed routine planned by sisters Stephanie St. Martin Bikowski and Jennifer St. Martin Morgan. Ariel Navarrete, selected by the contestants as Miss Congeniality, will receive a scholarship from the Lions Auxiliary. Upon being crowned 2016 Queen, Miss Riley expressed her excitement by saying, “This is like a dream. I don’t want to wake up!” Haley will reign over the 2016 Strawberry Festival with First Maid Morgan Gaudens and court members Alex Aponte, Ashtyn Steele and Ashlyn Yarbrough. The Queen and Court will have opportunities to appear in pre-festival events promoting the many features of the annual festival. Gail Lyons, Pageant co-chair, said, “Sad we could not make all 23 beautiful contestants queen. Queen Haley Riley, First Maid Morgan Gaudens, Court

members Ashlyn Yarbrough, Alex Aponte and Ashtyn Steele will be outstanding ambassadors for the 2016 Strawberry Festival! So have fun and continue to share your beauty with everyone!” Serving on the pageant committee with Gail were Co-chair Kerrie Gafford, Jean Ann Davenport, Jennifer Chamberlain, Amy Trinkle, ladies of the Plant City Lions Auxiliary and members of the Lions Club. Congratulations to Queen Haley and her court! We know you will represent our community well.


L

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

21


CONGRATULATIONS

Kendra Allen ON MAKING TOP 10

107 Holloway Rd, Plant City, FL 33567 (813) 650-8448 strawberryexchange.com 22

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

23


L

Pictured L-R are Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, Farm Credit of Northwest Florida Chief Financial Officer John Mottice, Farm Credit of Florida Marketing Director Ashley Layson, Farm Credit of Central Florida President and CEO Reginald Holt, Farm Credit of Central Florida Directors Ron Wetherington and Dennis Carlton Sr. and Florida’s Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam

FARM CREDIT CELEBRATES 100 YEARS A CENTENNIAL OF SERVICE TO AGRICULTURE

locales and expertise to understand the industry sectors they finance, in order to provide an unparalleled level of knowledge and service to their borrowerowners. In 2015, Farm Credit introduced Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives to celebrate the vision and commitment it takes to be a leader in rural enterprise today and tomorrow. More than 1,000 nominations were accepted through December to honor rural leaders. “For a century, Farm Credit has had the privilege of working hand in hand with the rural entrepreneurs and innovators who have helped shape the fabric of our nation,” said Reggie Holt, Farm Credit of Central Florida President and CEO. “As we mark the beginning of this milestone year, we can reflect on our history and heritage, while also asking ‘what’s next’ for rural communities.” Of the Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives honorees, 10 exceptional leaders will each receive a $10,000 award to help further their contributions to thriving rural communities and agriculture. These 10 honorees and a guest will participate in a special recognition event in Washington, D.C. this summer. “The 100 selected honorees will have the opportunity to share their stories,

inspire others with their vision and advocate for agriculture,” said Holt. “Rural industries evolve rapidly, and we are honored to recognize those who represent the future.” Since the creation of Farm Credit, rural enterprise has changed dramatically. From horse-drawn plows in 1916 to today’s GPS navigation systems guiding planting, fertilization and harvest, Farm Credit has been there to help farmers raise their crops. When times were tough–through the Dust Bowl and Great Depression, World War II and multiple economic downturns--the cooperative has stayed by borrower owners to ensure a continued supply of food, fuel and fiber to our nation and beyond. Farm Credit of Central Florida Director Ron Wetherington has served 23 years with Farm Credit and only recently retired after after 24 years with Florida’s Farm Bureau. He encouraged, “Our expectation is to be around for another 100 years. As before, Farm Credit will be right here to help when the going gets tough for our friends/members in agriculture and its related industries.” Farm Credit is committed to continue its legacy of providing essential credit to help rural communities and agriculture continue to thrive.

BY CHERYL JOHNSTON PHOTOS COURTESY OF RONALD O’CONNOR AND FARM CREDIT

F

arm Credit, one of the nation’s leading agricultural lenders and financial service providers, was honored with a special proclamation on February 6, 2016 by Florida’s Commissioner of Agriculture, Adam Putnam at the Fresh from Florida annual breakfast which opened the 2016 state fair in Tampa. Both Putnam and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi praised Farm Credit for its centennial of service. Now celebrating their 100th year, Farm Credit was established to help fund America’s food, fuel and fiber industries and support the thriving rural communities American farmers call home. The cooperative of nearly 75 independently owned and operated Farm Credit organizations serves all 50 states and Puerto Rico by providing more than

24

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

$217 billion in loans, leases, and financial services to farmers, ranchers, and rural businesses. As more than a third of the credit needed by U.S. agriculture, this capital helps nearly 500,000 borrowerowners plant and nurture seeds, purchase and care for livestock, buy land and equipment like harvesters and combines, build barns and milking parlors, and expand storage, packing and processing facilities. Farm Credit capital also finances agricultural cooperatives, communications, electric, power and water providers deliver essential infrastructure services to America’s rural communities. Each organization is a local cooperative owned by its customers and provides services in the communities where they live and work. The memberowned cooperatives have a deep understanding of agriculture in their

Farm Credit of Central Florida President and CEO Reginald Holt


CONGRATULATIONS

Ashlyn Yarbrough 2016 FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL COURT MEMBER

806 Woodrow Wilson St., Unit #1 Plant City, FL 813-659-2501 FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

25


L

Florida Mystery Writer Award winner for 2016, Tim Dorsey (R), thanks fan Michael Rae of Ohio for purchasing his newest release, Coconut Cowboy, during the book signing visit to Bruton Memorial Library on January 23.

AWARD-WINNING AUTHOR TIM DORSEY VISITS BRUTON MEMORIAL LIBRARY BY CHERYL JOHNSTON

A

lmost 50 “Serge Storms” fans gathered January 23 at Bruton Memorial Library to meet Tampa author Tim Dorsey. Followers embrace the fun in his laugh-out-loud funny, super

26

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

escapism novels with crazy characters Serge Storms and Coleman. They are also looking forward to a TV series, now in the works. On January 26 Dorsey received the Florida Mystery Writers Award at the Selby

Library in Sarasota. In the Florida-author mystery subgenre, he joins the likes of writers James D. MacDonald, Carl Hiaasen, James W. Hall, Edna Buchanan, Charles Willeford, Barbara Parker, Les Standiford, Carolina Garcia Aguilera, and Randy Wayne White. The award-winning author’s writing goal is one novel a year. Indiana-born, he grew up in Riviera Beach, where a high school teacher encouraged his writing interest through books by Joseph Heller and Kurt Vonnegut. Dorsey served at Auburn University (Class of 1983), as editor of The Plainsman. After working the police and courts reporting beat for The Alabama Journal, he joined the Tampa Tribune staff in 1987. During 12 years there until 1999, positions included general assignment, the Tribune’s Tallahassee bureau, copy desk editor and eventually metro editor, before he left to write full time. With 19 novels published in several languages, Dorsey has garnered fans in the U.S., France, Germany, Japan, Russia and the U.K. Tantalizing titles include Florida Roadkill, Hammerhead Ranch Motel, Orange Crush, Triggerfish Twist, The Stingray Shuffle, Cadillac Beach, Torpedo Juice, The Big Bamboo, Hurricane Punch, Atomic Lobster, Nuclear Jellyfish,

Gator A-Go-Go, Electric Barracuda, When Elves Attack, Pineapple Grenade, The Riptide Ultra-Glide, Tiger Shrimp Tango, Shark Skin Suite, and his newest— Coconut Cowboy. William Morrow and Company publishes the North American hardbacks, while Harper Torch produces the paperbacks. Audio versions are also available. At the Bruton Library event, Dorsey responded to guests’ questions about his story inspiration, characters, and writing life, crediting“ confrontational people” for triggering plot ideas. Donna Winters, an attendee who purchased three Coconut Cowboy books, looks forward to the 3rd Serge Offshore Adventure with sisters Susan Reese of Pittsburgh and Eileen Stewart of Ft. Worth in March. Serge & Company plan to see “what history and trouble they can get into” during the Caribbean Islands cruise. In November, footloose followers celebrated Florida at Serge’s Myakka River Jam, a State Park Rally. With live music and native cuisine, the “rockin’ all-day party” drew hundreds of like-minded friends. For news, tour schedule, and to shop Serge’s Store, visit TimDorsey.com, where e-mail inquiries and feedback are always welcome.


Haley Riley CONGRATULATIONS

2016 STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL QUEEN

620 Copeland Dr, Zephyrhills, FL 33542 (813) 715-0404 www.morrowsteel.com FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

27


L

presentations. These were (in order of appearance) Nate “Mullet” Kilton, Edwena “Horse with No Name” Haney, Frank “At the Car Wash” Cummings, Charles “Ice-Ice Baby” Harris, Verna “I Will Survive” McKelvin, and with a surprise finale, the Chamber’s new leader, Brian West.

2015 Chairman Michael Cameron passes the gavel to 2016 Chairman Brian West

34TH ANNUAL CHAIRMAN’S BANQUET MICHAEL CAMERON PASSES CHAMBER GAVEL TO BRIAN WEST BY CHERYL JOHNSTON

T

he Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce welcomed new Chairman Brian West at its 34th Annual Chairman’s Banquet on January 28, 2016 Members and their guests gathered at the Trinkle Center to enjoy dinner, awards presentation, installation of officers and directors, and passing of the gavel from Michael Cameron to West. And laughter at the wild and wacky video finale was the perfect way to end the evening. West is now officially the 63rd leader since 1950 to chair the Chamber’s Board of Directors, and possibly the first to win the GPCCC Lip Sync Battle! For a good laugh, view the video posted February 1 on the Chamber’s Facebook page. He brings a wealth of experience to the position: almost 10 years in HR and the last few as Media and Community Relations Manager with Publix Super Markets.Today, as part of his role with Publix, he interacts with chambers of commerce in Florida from West Orlando to St. Petersburg and from Lady Lake to

28

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Marco Island. “I’ve seen those that function well and those that don’t,” he shared. “From others’ successes, gripes, and likes, I’ve learned from them all.” West has some wonderful ideas for continuing the growth and success of Plant City’s Chamber members. One goal is to provide more assistance and mentoring to new and younger members. “I believe the Chamber should be involved with our members from cradle to grave,” he offered. “The younger businesses can learn and benefit from the work experience of the longterm successes.” West also looks forward to “maintaining and improving our wonderful relations with the City of Plant City.” If the now infamous Lip Sync Battle video is any indication, this should b a fun and progressive year for the players. “Official” judges Gary “Starmaker” Pyke, Paul “Ricky Martin, Parole Officer” Davis, and Michael “Tex” Cameron ruminated on the costumed entertainers’

The 2016 Chamber Board includes Executive Committee members: • Chairman- Brian West, Publix Super Markets, Inc. • Chairman Elect- Yvonne Fry, Lines of Communication • Immediate Past Chairman- Michael Cameron of Cameron Financial • Management Treasurer- Edwena Haney of Hopewell Funeral Home & Memorial Gardens • Economic Development CouncilPhil Waldron of Waldron Consulting Services • Community & Government Affairs Division- Martyn Clay of Hillsborough Community College • Membership Division- Verna McKelvin of Wells Memorial & Event Center • Community Programs DivisionJason Jones, Advantage Restoration, Inc. Chamber Board Directors include: • Matt Buzza, Platinum Bank • Paul Hackney, Sunshine Bank

• Charles Harris, Holiday Inn Express & Suites • Larry Jiminez, Jr., Star Distribution Systems • Karen Kerr, South Florida Baptist Hospital • Nate Kilton of Sedita, Kilton & Company, CPAs, P.I • James Moody of James S. Moody, III, Attorney at Law • Jim Scott of Jarrett-Scott Ford • Clark Smith, Suncoast Credit Union • Keith Smith of Trinkle, Redman, • Swanson, Coton, Davis, & Smith, P.A. • Darcy Stottlemeyer, All A Bloom Florist • Michael Watkins, V & R Insurance • Carole Wright of Myers & Wright, P.A. Outgoing directors for 2016 are Bradley Herremans of Suncoast Community Health Centers Pediatrics and Kenneth Parker of the Florida Strawberry Growers Association. The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce invites and encourages public interaction, comments and suggestions by phone to 800-760-2315, e-mail to info at plantcity.org, or personal visit at 106 N. Evers Street in the historic downtown. Visit online at plantcity.org to view the calendar, business directory, ribbon cutting ceremonies, updates and other important information

Friends and Chamber co-workers, President Marion Smith and Amy Nizamoff, enjoyed the expressions of appreciation for their jobs well done. Smith will retire in late May and Nizamoff has accepted a new position.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

29


L

• The excellent, artistic student with lovely handwriting enjoyed patternmaking, embroidery and sewing her own clothes; seamstress with the WPA during the Depression

• Ellen believed in recycling long before the word was invented, saving everything, knowing she’d one day find a use for it

• Her motto: “Make do or do without!” Not wasting is still important to her. • Married Shelly Alonzo Cannon on August 20, 1939 in Plant City

• 1944 - The Cannons purchased 13 acres just off Cork Road, where the children were raised, as well as many crops, for years and years. • Hardworking wife, mother, homemaker, and neighbor; tended fields with Shelly

• On January 19, 1947 she invited Jesus Christ to be her Lord and Savior at Bethany Baptist Church; served the nursery (until 1980) and as a Sunday School teacher to children. At 100, Ellen Clendening Cannon is still full of life and surrounded by a loving family.

ELLEN CLENDENING CANNON CELEBRATES 100TH BIRTHDAY

PLANT CITY ANNOUNCES NEW HOLIDAY IN HER HONOR BY CHERYL JOHNSTON

P

lant City has a new holiday! City commissioners issued a proclamation naming January 15 as Ellen Ethel Clendening Cannon Day, in honor of her 100th birthday. And a large crowd of well-wishing family and friends gathered to celebrate at her party on Saturday of 2016. In addition to the City’s proclamation, Ellen received another from Florida State Representative Dan Raulerson. His district assistant, Robyn Bryant, read both while the appreciative crowd used cameras and phones to record the milestone. Five children were born to Ellen and Shelly Alonzo Cannon: Robert Cannon,

30

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Virginia Mae Harrison, Linda Wimberly, Janet Balistreri, and Marvin Cannon. Wimberly, the family’s historian, wrote a wonderful biography of her mother for the occasion. Here follows a few interesting excerpts which paint the picture of Ellen’s long and productive life. • Born to Bert and Clarice Knight Clendening on January 15, 1916 in Champaign, Illinois; Oldest of 12 siblings—7 boys and 5 girls; only four “Clendenkies” remain today. • Family moved to Indiana when Ellen was 14, then settled in Itchepackasassa, near Plant City, Florida

• Nine grandchildren and twelve greatgrandchildren know her as “Grandma the Great.” • Widowed suddenly in 1985

• Passionate about plants, flowers and trees; her yard was always a topic of conversation.

• Loves animals; rescued dogs became loyal companions in widowhood • Usually a homebody, but visited family in Germany in 1989.

• In 2006 at age 90, moved next door to live with Virginia and Jimmy • Since March of 2014 she’s enjoyed excellent residential care at Solaris Healthcare Center on Wilder Road. • The Cannons still love family gatherings.

And this party to honor their muchloved Ellen should be one they’ll recall for years to come.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

31


L

Strawberry Distance Challenge volunteers from Plant City Church of God greeted the race participants with smiles, high-fives and photo ops.

2016 STRAWBERRY DISTANCE CHALLENGE 5 & 10K BY ANDRIA BARRIOS | PHOTO COURTESY OF YOUTH ALLIANCE

O

n the early morning of Saturday, February 6, Plant City residents gathered to participate in the Strawberry Distance Challenge, a 5 and 10k run that started and finished in the Walden Lake community. Unlike most residents who slept in on the cold Florida morning, these racers were up and at it. Runners from ages 12 to 70+ pushed their way through to the end, many donning red tutus and strawberry- themed knee socks. This year’s challenge featured precise chip timing, fundraising for local charities and even new and improved online registration. All proceeds went to the Youth Alliance, a non-profit organization, for which presenters perform anti-bully presentations across the country and focus on building better students. The Mud Titan run is also held once a year to benefit this organization. Mike Nelson, who handed out medals to proud winners, has been heading these runs for nearly eight years. He was pleased with “today’s great turnout.” The overall female 5k winner, Mia DeRonda, clocked in at 18:50. But what really spoke to her talent was the fact that she was only 12 years old. Several others

32

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

in her age group also ran. But the run wasn’t only for the young and spry. A few participants over 70 even received awards. The overall male 5k winner was Pedro Meraz, who finished at 17:47. This year, the distance challenge also included a 10k, as opposed to an 8k the year before. Impressive times were also clocked in for this even more challenging distance. Joshua Rayman, overall male winner, received a time of 39:19 while Julie Ann Ulery accomplished hers in 41:42. Obviously, Plant City is certainly not lacking in lightning fast runners. Sponsored by Astin Farms, 1-4 Power, New Generation Tees, Jarrett Scott Ford and others, the run even featured a Mr. Strawberry who posed for pictures with each racer. Winners also received bright red Strawberry Distance Challenge T-shirts, fresh strawberries and bananas, water and even tickets to the 2016 Strawberry Festival. To learn more, visit www.strawberrydistancechallenge. com or www.facebook.com/ StrawberryDistanceChallenge/. For additional information on the Youth Alliance, go to www.theyouthalliance.com.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

33


L

in the automobile industry just after his University of Texas graduation, he eventually found himself as the owner of Stingray Chevrolet. Through his personal, company, and employee efforts, Hurley and the dealership have raised nearly one million dollars through raffles and contributions. He is proud of the Boy Scouts of America organization and its mission to raise good, honest young men in the next generation of leaders. Hurley thanked the

Scouts, describing the tribute as a “very humbling experience to be considered in the group of Soaring Eagles.” Various members in authority followed up to affirm and share their same-held beliefs in the BSA organization. The newest Soaring Eagle has shown himself to be compassionate, generous, and humble—and through these traits his legacy will continue as a supporter of the Boy Scouts of America.

Eagle Scout Johnathan Lane of Troop 744 enjoyed meeting new Soaring Eagle recipient, Steve Hurley, and his wife Susan.

FRIENDS OF SCOUTING DINNER

STEVE HURLEY: A SOARING EAGLE BY A.J. BOLESTA

B

oy Scouts of all ages and ranks gathered with Scoutmasters and Plant City community notables at the annual Plant City Friends of Scouting Dinner on February 11, 2016 at the Trinkle Center. They welcomed local benefactor Steve Hurley with an induction into the Soaring Eagle recipient community. The fundraiser, hosted by the Plant City Friends of Scouting Committee, benefits the local community of Scouts in the Gulf Ridge Council. The 13th person to receive this designation has been heavily involved in the community since he opened his Stingray Chevrolet dealership at I-4 and Park Road. As one of the top 50 Chevrolet dealerships in the country, the Hurley family welcomes the opportunity to support local charitable causes through fundraisers and sponsorships. 34

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Guests enjoyed a catered chicken dinner finished off perfectly with strawberry topped cheesecake. During the meal, various members of the community expressed their fondness for the Boy Scouts of America and the values they develop through troops all across the country. Prior to the Soaring Eagle announcement, Dr. Martyn Clay, President of the Hillsborough Community College- Plant City HCC campus and an advocate for the Boy Scouts, spoke about how the scouting instills good character in troop members. He referenced the importance of "the ethics,” and added, "This is a precursor to life, a big precursor." Although Hurley is a Lakeland native, his heart is connected to Plant City, and his generosity shows the passion he holds for this community. Starting a career

The younger Scouts had fun with the box car run at the annual Friends of Scouting Dinner.

Scouts earn badges for correctly tying knots and understanding their specific uses.


COMMUNITY CRAFT FAIR hosted by:

CONGRATULATIONS

Kendale Sellers ON MAKING TOP 10

FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH

April 9, 2016

10:00 AM to 3:00 PM 405 W. Baker Street, Plant City, FL 33563 Interested vendors contact church ofямБce 813 -752 - 4211 to get application and info.

503 W. Dr. MLK Jr. Blvd., Plant City, FL 33563 813-752-4155 www.poppellinsurance.com FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

35


L

Various church members, pipers, and drummers participated in the annual Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan at First Presbyterian Church of Plant City on January 31, 2016.

ANNUAL KIRKIN’ O’ THE TARTAN CELEBRATING A SCOTTISH HERITAGE BY A.J. BOLESTA

CONGRATULATIONS

Alex Aponte

2016 FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL COURT MEMBER

813-752-7763 www.FredsSouthernKitchen.com 36

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

W

hen many individuals go to church and think about the history of religion, they will often recall stories of Bethlehem, Egypt, and other lands neighboring the Mediterranean. Most are unaware of the movement begun by the late Reverend Peter Marshall at his Washington, D.C. church to honor the Scottish heritage. Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan may seem like an oddly coined phrase, but the meaning is simple and to the point. Kirkin’, which is also known as “Churching,” and Tartan, which is the name of woven plaids the celebrators wear, are put together to show the Scots are not only proud of their religion, but they are also proud of who they are as individuals. The First Presbyterian Church of Plant City, established in 1885, held its Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan event on January 31, 2016, during the Sunday morning worship service. The celebration is exclusive to the Presbyterian denomination. Celebrators were dressed head to toe in Scottish garments, including the signature kilt and bagpipes,. When the pipers and drummers entered the church, their music and powerful performance resonated off the walls and captivated everyone in attendance.

The almost military-like performance displays the stoic qualities of a solemn and sacred ceremony. Banners with checkered designs identical to the Tartans were hung across the aisles of the church, perpendicular to the performers. These designs represent various families of the Scottish heritage, also known as clans, and are used as a decorative piece to show respect to and admiration for their bloodlines. The sermon offered by the Reverend Dr. David Delph served as both precursor and follow up to the Tartan performance. He also provided insight into the history of the Scottish heritage and was able to bridge both history and theology in an enjoyable manner. After the sermon, everyone congregated downstairs for the luncheon prepared by various church members. Fittingly, some of the offerings were Scottish dishes and the perfect touch to continue the festive and informative celebration. Visitors are always welcome to the church at 404 W. Reynolds Street in Plant City. Service times include Sunday School at 9:30AM and Worship, Nursery, and Junior Church at 10:45AM. For additional information, phone 813-752-4211 or visit online at fpcpc.org.


1003 S COLLINS ST PLANT CITY FL 33563

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

37


39th Annual FSF Fashion Show and Luncheon FESTIVE FASHION, ROYAL FUN At least 85 locals enjoyed their runway experience on January 28, 2016 at the “Festive Fashion, Royal Fun” 39th Annual Florida Strawberry Festival Fashion Show and Luncheon. WFTS-ABC Action News anchors Dan Schaffer and Ashley Glass kept the audience laughing with their humorous remarks, intended to help the models relax. The fashion providers included: Cato, Denise Young’s Boutique, RAOK, Fringe, Southside Western & Outdoor Wear, and Stein Mart. Simply Southern Catering served the strawberry-themed meal, with a special dessert from Alessi Bakeries. Attendees had a great time watching community friends, young and young-at-heart, model with Royalty Court members from 2015 and 2016 and the 2016 Junior Royalty Court representatives in the Grimes Family Agricultural Center. Carl Grooms twirled his wife DeeDee down the runway, Rick and Di Lott celebrated their anniversary, and Mary Mathis stole a kiss from husband Tony as their fans cheered them on. It was definitely an affair to remember!

38

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

39


ey & Cheryl

By Judy Ron

ey & Cheryl

By Judy Ron

Johnston

Johnston

including Christmas. The First Baptist Church and volunteers work in conjunction with the Bercy-Cabaret Haiti Mission to aid an entire village. We provide them with better generators and an aquaponics system, which helps feed the people and bolster their economy.”

GH

KATELYN YARBROU

Plant City native Katelyn Yarbrough, 14, loves ‘70s music with her Father, playing the piano, and family outings to the lake. And obviously, school is important at this stage of life. The freshman varsity cheerleader, Interact club member and Junior FFA President works hard to maintain a 4.0 GPA because she’s driven by faith and personal ethics to be her best. With her Christian heritage, the daughter of Mark and Lori Yarbrough cares deeply about the betterment of all people everywhere. In conversation, she’s also quick to share her true passion, which is ministry to Haiti through First Baptist Church mission trips. With her older sister Ashlyn and parents, Katelyn has been three times since August 2013 and she sees herself returning more often in the future. She even says, “God has selected Haiti for my family.” So, since helping Haiti is a passion, tell us a little more. “My family had an opportunity with our church and we took it. We even spend vacations with the Haitian community,

40

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

How do you spend free time? “Well, my free time is mostly cheer at school, but we also do this thing we call ‘Big Happy Family’, where multiple families split the cost of renting a mansion and we do life together.”

What do you enjoy about life in Plant City? “I really enjoy how it’s like a family. Not everyone is nosy, but they are still there for you. We go through it all together. I also enjoy the family businesses.” What are your plans for adulthood? “I plan on keeping and raising my GPA because I want to go to the University of Florida and eventually get an advanced degree from the University of Miami. I am hoping to be a dermatologist.” How can people do to make the world a better place? “We have to work together and always remain positive. Positivity and putting others first.” Can you share something you absolutely believe in? “The First Baptist Church. We are very involved with them and we love it there.”

ANTHONY BOLEST A Miami-born Anthony Bolesta moved at age two to Plant City with his family when his dad’s job with CSX required a transfer. The Plant City High School graduate (2011) earned his Associate of Arts degree from Hillsborough Community College in 2014 and plans to pursue an advanced degree in psychology. He’s searching for work to earn money for college classes, so if you’re company is hiring, let him know where to send a resume. One personal goal for Anthony is “to continue to know my community as a young adult and Plant City resident.” Additionally, he shared, “I also enjoy promotion of family businesses and good values.” At the interview for this story, Anthony confessed that he’d only ever eaten breakfast at Fred’s, never lunch, until this day. Since he wasn’t especially hungry yet, the blue-plate buffet was the perfect choice. Tell us about the novel you’re writing. “The working title is Broken Lands and it’s a post-apocalyptic story for young adults. I’ve always liked that genre. I’ve been writing three months with 250 pages completed so far and think I’m about halfway through with the first draft. “ What prompted your interest in writing? “I enjoyed working on the yearbook staff in ninth grade. Mrs Newsome, my English and SAT Prep teacher, helped me to feel more comfortable about writing in general. Writing essays for college has helped me to improve also. I also help a friend from Michigan with short films he produces when he visits here.”

What’s your family like? “We’re very close. I’m the only child of Randall and Mary. My dad has always worked for the railroad and mom stays home to care for us. She’s a great cook and I’ve learned from both by example. We had a Pekinese dog named Spike, but he was dognapped three years ago on Thanksgiving Day.” What other activities or work were you involved with in high school and since? “I wrestled in high school (and lost weight), was an FAA and National Honor Society member, and volunteered with Amnesty International. I’ve performed as a scare actor at the Busch Gardens Howl-OScream nights and volunteered 174 hours as a youth coach for the Plant City Recreation Department’s Planteen Center.” And how do you spend relaxing time now? “I go to the car shows and bike shows here and get together with friends.” What do you enjoy about Plant City? “This is ‘home.’ It’s all I’ve ever known. The good people make it a great place to live.” How can people help make this world a better place? “Be more considerate of each other and try to understand not everyone is in your position.”

Find more People of Plant City on Facebook. Connecting the oneofstory a time. Findcommunity more People PlantatCity on facebook.com/peopleofplantcity Facebook. Connecting the community one story at a time. facebook.com/peopleofplantcity


Portrait & Wedding photography

(813) 482-1571 info@shanamitchell.com shanamitchell.com

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

41


DID YOU KNOW

L

The 1931 Florida Strawberry Festival Queen was Irvin Wilder, who served with court members Bernice Adams, Gladys Balliett, Elizabeth Carey, Orel Ferguson, Elizabeth Hull, Genevieve McDermid, Elizabeth Morse, and Eleanor Murrill.

THE 1931 FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL THE FOLLOW UP TO INAUGURAL SUCCESS

BY PLANT CITY PHOTO ARCHIVES AND HISTORY CENTER

M

uch has been written about the wonderful inaugural Florida Strawberry Festival in March of 1930, its promotion by the Lions Club, and its incredible success. Little has been written about the festival that followed – the challenges, the planning, and its own success. Here is a look at the 1931 Florida Strawberry Festival. Joyfully reeling after their first highly successful festival, the organizers immediately began planning the next annual festival – setting the dates, critiquing the operations, lining up participants, selecting committees, etc. By December 1930, plans were well drawn and implementation had already begun. The 1931 festival, they believed, would be even bigger and better than the last. Henry Hamilton Huff, Florida

42

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Strawberry Festival Association Secretary, wrote his “Brief History Of the Beginning Florida Strawberry Festival” and had it printed in the new Program. Here is some of what he wrote: The Lions Club, the youngest civic organization in Plant City, had advanced a worthy idea and, not only had they simply advanced it, but they did not stop until all the other organizations had been set favorably towards it. Other organizations fell in line. The Kiwanis club, with their usual progressive methods, as well as the Plant City Woman’s club – The Business and Professional Woman’s club – the American Legion – the Beta Club – city officials, in fact, every citizen faced the issue with splendid co-operative effort. It would be impossible to bring out in

detail the many problems that these citizens faced and met with a firm and aggressive attitude. However, the spirit shown by the citizenry as a whole was such as to urge them on and to those attending our Second Florida Strawberry Festival, we desire to say we are proud of our work and our efforts will continue, co-operating with other citizens to the end that the Florida Strawberry Festival will be made a permanent yearly exhibit – and to this we pledge our efforts – our enthusiasm – our time and our civic pride. When the time came, Huff was right. The Plant City Enterprise, on Friday, March 6, 1931, carried this statement: “The Second Annual Florida Strawberry Festival, with two days to go, promises to prove an even greater success than last year’s exposition.” It continued, “The gates were thrown open Tuesday afternoon after a fine parade, approximately a mile in length, which was viewed by thousands of people who lined the streets along the route. The parade was acclaimed as the finest yet produced here,” Stepping off at 1:00 p.m. the parade was led by Plant City’s own Battery E of the 116th Field Artillery, followed by scores of floats from Plant City, Tampa, St. Petersburg, Winter Haven, and Ybor City, numerous decorated cars for clubs and officials, and bands from Plant City, Tampa, and Lakeland. When it marched east on Baker Street past the festival grounds at Michigan Avenue, the parade disbanded. The formal opening of the 1931 Florida Strawberry Festival followed at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 3. The theme was “School Day”. A concert followed at 2:15 p.m. At 2:30 p.m. the introduction of guests and the speeches began; the master of ceremonies was the popular District 4 County Commissioner, W. T. Watkins. Other speakers included Albert Schneider, Festival Association President; Gerald H. Bates, Mayor-Commissioner of Plant City; County Commission Chairman, W. T. Williams; George Carey, Festival Entertainment Chairman; Tampa Mayor, Donald B. McKay, Winter Haven Mayor, Mr. Warren; W. G. Brorein, President of the South Florida Fair; J. P. Mays, President of the Florida Orange Festival; Carl Brorein, of the Tampa Jaycees; and Ira M. Allen, “who has generously aided the movement by erecting the buildings housing the Festival.” (Plant City Enterprise). Along with the berry packing contest, and the Baby Parade, participants and visitors enjoyed the many displays, booths, and exhibits including strawberries, vegetables, citrus, canned products, and more. The fourth annual Woman’s Club Plant City Flower Show, now a part of the festival, under the

direction of the Woman’s Club and the Home Demonstration clubs of East Hillsborough County, was outstanding. It was the largest collection of flowers and plants ever viewed in Plant City. The midway this year was put on by the Bernardi Exposition Shows and included “Valencia the Daring”, the “Artistic Merrils”, and the “Little Woman with the Giant Voice”. The free acts and midway ran until midnight every night. The second day of the festival was the “Crowning of the Queen of the Festival” scheduled for 2:00 p.m., with MayorCommissioner Bates doing the honors. The new Queen was Irvin Wilder, a member of the prominent Wilder family. Her Court included Bernice Adams, Gladys Balliett, Elizabeth Carey, Orel Ferguson, Elizabeth Hull, Genevieve McDermid, Elizabeth Morse, and Eleanor Murrill. The heralds and pages were Virginia Dennison, Jane Day Page, Ned Haven, and Reece Smith. That evening a dinner was held at the Hotel Plant for the Queen, her Court, public officials and festival directors. It was a sumptuous affair. 1 “Tourist Day” was celebrated Thursday, March 5, with an “Address of Welcome” by George A. Carey, at 11:00 a.m. The free acts, exhibits, booths, and Bernardi’s Great Exposition Shows ran until midnight. A special event for the evening was the Fiddler’s Contest held at 8:30 p.m. Friday, March 6, was “Strawberry Day” and featured a general inspection of all displays by city officials and officers of the Festival Association. The final day of the 1931 Festival was “Farmers Day” and in addition to the shows, acts, rides, booths, and displays, there was an “Address to Farmers” delivered by former City Commissioner and County Commissioner, E. J. DeVane. The festival ran one day longer in 1931 than 1930, expended from four to five days, and was experienced and enjoyed by thousands. The 1931 Florida Strawberry Festival succeeded in surpassing its own spectacular inaugural festival of 1930. It was now firmly entrenched as a major annual event in Plant City and east Hillsborough County. Sources: Florida Strawberry Festival Association 1931 Program; Plant City Enterprise, March 1931; Quintilla Geer Bruton and David E. Bailey, Jr. Plant City; Its Origin and History; Plant City Photo Archives and History Center collections. Note: 1. It is not definite here when the dinner was held at the Hotel Plant. It is assumed it followed the crowning of the Queen on Wednesday, March 4.


RIBBON CUTTINGS L

The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting on January 12, 2016 for Symplicity Designs at the Plant City Chamber of Commerce. Symplicity Designs has a team of Organizational Designers who design, train, and coach businesses how to Improve, Innovate, and grow their business faster than the competition. They work with Small, Medium, and Largesized enterprises. Their focus with clients is on the three parts that exist in any organization: Purpose, Process and People, and how to effectively Lead Change in those three areas. The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting on January 14, 2016 for Internal Medicine Associates of Plant City at 511 West Alexander Street, Suite 2, Plant City. Dr. Yvonne Braver and Dr. Ria Calata, are both board certified internal medicine physicians and dedicate themselves to ensuring all of the patient’s health care needs are being met. Patients not only receive a two-physician review each visit but also have the convenience of flexible scheduling, such as same day appointments, availability during lunch, and scheduling online appointments. The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting on January 19, 2016 for H & R Block located at 2216 James L. Redman Parkway, Plant City. H & R Block has been in business since 1955. The Walden Woods office has exceptional tax pros, many with more than 20 years of experience. Their office is open year round so they are always available to help with any of your tax needs, from simple returns to small business and corporate returns.

The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting on January 26, 2016 for Wishing Well Barn, located at 4302 Pippin Road, Plant City. Since they opened their doors in 2012, they’ve been providing an amazing event location for people interested in rustic/vintage and agricultural weddings and events. They offer packages to meet every event need and budget. There are discounts for weekday, Friday & Sunday events as well as first responders and military couples. The Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting on February 4, 2016 for Central Florida SCORE at the Plant City Chamber of Commerce. Central Florida SCORE is the local Chapter of SCORE, a national nonprofit organization, sponsored by the Small Business Administration. Their mission is to mentor and educate, at no cost, small business startups and existing businesses to succeed and thrive. Their volunteers are all professional, experienced Certified Mentors with expertise in a variety of fields.

CONGRATULATIONS

Carley Smith ON MAKING TOP 10

414 N. Alexander St., Plant City, FL 33563 813-754-3561 Fax: 813-754-3450 floridainsurancecenter.com FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

43


FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL

®

Save $2.00 on Adult & $1.00 on Youth General Admission Tickets at Publix

Royal Fun for Everyone! March 3 –13, 2016 • Plant City, FL

Artists Appearing on the

Soundstage:

©

Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra

Charley Pride

Thu. Mar. 3, 10:30 Thu. Mar. 3, 3:30 $15 & $20 FREE

Cheap Trick

Trace Adkins

Mickey Gilley

Fri. Mar. 4, 3:30 $15 & $20

Ray Stevens

Wed. Mar. 9, 3:30 $15 & $20

Martina McBride

Wed. Mar. 9, 7:30 $20 & $25

BIG & RICH

Lecrae

Fri. Mar. 4, 7:30 $25 & $30

Donny & Marie

Shenandoah

Sun. Mar. 6, 3:30 $15 & $20

Sat. Mar. 5, 7:30 $20 & $25

Tue. Mar. 8, 7:30 $20 & $25

Josh Turner

Thu. Mar. 3, 7:30 $20 & $25

Sun. Mar. 6, 7:30 $55

Tommy Dorsey Orchestra Thu. Mar. 10, 10:30 FREE

Sat. Mar. 5, 3:30 $25

Gene Watson

Mon. Mar. 7, 3:30 $15 & $20

LONESTAR

Dick Fox’s Golden Boys

Mon. Mar. 7, 7:30 $15 & $20

Oak Ridge Boys

Thur. Mar. 10, 3:30 $15 & $20

Frankie Avalon, Fabian & Bobby Rydell Tue. Mar. 8, 3:30 $20 & $25

Casting Crowns

Thur. Mar. 10, 7:30 $20 & $25

Tanya Tucker

Fri. Mar. 11, 3:30 $15 & $20

Free Grandstand COLE SWINDELL

Fri. Mar. 11, 7:30 $35 & $40

Merle Haggard

Sat. Mar. 12, 3:30 $35

Charlie Wilson

Sat. Mar. 12, 7:30 $35 & $40

echosmith

Sun. Mar. 13, 3:30 $20 & $25

The Band Perry

Sun. Mar. 13, 7:30 $40

#berryfest16

3:30 & 7:30 pm Seating is on a first come, first seated basis. Concert dates and times are subject to change

Visit www.flstrawberryfestival.com or call 813-754-1996 and get your tickets now! While online, check out the Free Entertainment and Special Days for Discounts and full Schedule of Festival Events.

•Candyland Warehouse•Stingray Chevrolet•Mosaic•Alessi Bakery•AMSCOT•Carolina Carports•Astin Farms•DIRECTV•Verizon Wireless•Netterfield’s Concessions•Florida Blue •Southern Ford Dealers•Global Frequency Technology•Images Everywhere!•TECO•Good Health Saunas•truwhip•SunPass•Florida Dairy Farmers•O’Reilly Auto Parts •Club Wyndham•Nathan’s Famous•Diamond Resorts Int’l•Bright House Networks•Uncommon USA•General RV Center•Smithfield•Sunshine Bank•99.5QYK 44

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


~ Melissa P., a patient of South Florida Baptist Hospital

The Care You Need, When You Need It. When Melissa had a real emergency, she needed a real ER. That’s exactly what she got at South Florida Baptist Hospital. A member of the community since 1953, South Florida Baptist Hospital was built on quality, compassionate care. You’ll find a highly skilled and experienced team that works to make patients and visitors as comfortable as possible during their hospital experience. When you’re treated at South Florida Baptist Hospital, you’ll feel at home, close to home — all your health care needs are covered, without ever leaving Plant City. Learn more: PlantCityER.org

Our Specialties: n ER: Efficient medical treatment for minor or major emergencies and illnesses n Surgery: Large operating rooms, high-tech equipment and spacious recovery rooms create a pleasant environment for patients n Heart: State-of-the-art heart and vascular center offering cardiac diagnostic services and procedures

Choose South Florida Baptist Hospital. To find out more: 1-800-BayCare BC1600162-0116

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

45


46

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


We’re In Your Neighborhood Offering Product & Services to Meet Every Need! •

Farm Equipment Loans

Credit Cards

Bill Pay

Mortgages

Auto, RV, Boat & Motorcycle Loans

FREE Checking*

Mobile Banking & Mobile Deposit

And much more!

Stop by and see us today!

Plant City Office 1701 W. Baker Street Plant City, FL 33563

(813) 621-6661 | www.rifcu.org | (800) 769-1424 *Choice Checking is free with direct deposit FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

47


Meet Dan Walden, New President

FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL BOARD OF DIRECTORS Article By Cheryl Johnston

Dan Walden, President of Florida Strawberry Festival Board of Directors

S

ince his election in April of 2016, Dan Walden has served as president of the Florida Strawberry Festival’s board of directors. The 15year board member now leads the governing body of 30 individuals who are passionate about making Plant City’s festival one of the finest in the world. And that passion is infectious. Walden grew up in the citrus, cattle and strawberry business that his father, J.V. Walden, built in Dover, while his mother, Olga, taught at Mango Elementary School for 40 years. The Plant City High School graduate (Class of ’70) attended the University of Florida before transferring to the University of South Florida to complete his Criminal Justice degree. His career 48

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

has included positions with the Florida Farm Bureau and as President and partowner of Moody & Moody Insurance Agency. Since and with Poppell Insurance’s purchase of that company, Walden’s work in the industry has spanned 37 years. “Just like my Festival responsibilities, the commercial insurance work never gets boring,” he shared. “Meeting the needs of a variety of businesses has helped me to build friendships in my hometown. I enjoy what I do.” Dan and Pam have been married almost 38 years. As the Supervisor for Agriculture and JROTC education for Hillsborough County Schools, Pam’s career aligns beautifully with his passion for promoting the farming and

strawberry industries here. The Waldens have two children: Natasha, a Doctor of Physical Therapy with BayCare in Plant City; and son Beau who works with Rabo AgriFinance. Walden’s volunteer service with the Festival began in 1984 when he worked with Rolly Rollyson on the parade committee. Through the years he has chaired the swine show, serves on the Strawberry Ball committee, been the Associate Director in charge of parking lots, and was the overall livestock chairman. “The nice thing about my Festival position now is that all our Directors, Associate Directors and staff members are adept at what they do, which makes my job so much easier,” Walden shared. “I love the Festival and am excited from the standpoint of watching everything come together from the ground up.” He continued, “The anticipation for opening day is mounting and we all sense this will be a very special year.”

As president, Dan is responsible for assigning chairmanships to his team members. He will also interview the first person to enter this year’s event on Thursday, March 3. “We want our employees to know how important their role is in making our visitors feel welcomed and appreciated,” he explained. Florida Strawberry Festival General Manager Paul Davis complimented Walden’s abilities. “By the time you make president on our board, you have proven yourself and your love for our community, the Festival, and the people. Presidents can take pride in knowing they have helped to create and mold a better event each year. Dan has done a great job already.” Walden looks forward to “great weather, great entertainment, trying some new foods, making some new friends and seeing a lot I’ve known for a long time.”

Dan Walden, President of Florida Strawberry Festival Board of Directors, looks forward to welcoming visitors from near and far to our famous Festival.


Smart Farmers & Country Home Owners Who borrowed from Farm Credit received a personal visit from a United States President! Farm Credit of Central Florida puts its profits in its Member/Borrower’s pockets in the form of a patronage refund payment which can significantly lower the cost of funds to the member.

$100,000 loan at a 4.5% interest rate receiving a12% patronage would reduce the rate of interest to 3.96%. A

Ask you Farm Credit loan officer about the details of a patronage refund and our diverse loan products.

866.824.5626 | FarmCreditCFL.com Loans for land, homes & country living FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

49


50

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


The newly crowned 2016 Florida Strawberry Festival Queen, Haley Riley, described the January 23rd pageant and announcement of her win as “like a dream!” After being selected from a field of 23 contestants through five phases of competition, Queen Haley has begun her reign prior to the Strawberry Festival with First Maid Morgan Gaudens and court members Alex Aponte, Ashtyn Steele and Ashlyn Yarbrough. Congratulations to our newest ambassadors who will make many appearances during the 11-day, 81st annual community event in celebration of Eastern Hillsborough County’s strawberry harvest. Throughout the year in a full schedule of visits, these lovely ladies will also represent the industry and Plant City. Follow their journey through photos and media posted at www.flstrawberryfestival.com and on social media sites: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (#berryfest16).

Queen 2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

and her Court

Interview by Cheryl Johnston Photography by Shana Mitchell Photography

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

51


52

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

QUEEN HALEY RILEY The eldest child of William and Heather Riley is sister to brother Coley, 13, and sister Macey, 8. The Durant High School junior, active in FFA, plans to attend the University of Florida and obtain a residency in Pediatric Anesthesiology. She believes others recognize her for being confident, driven and persistent. As a little girl, Haley “always played with Aunt Deanna Brewer’s sash and trophy from her time in the court.” She added, “I grew up knowing I wanted to do it, too.” Of the onstage jitters, the new Queen explained: “Because of previous experience, I wasn’t nervous, BUT when they called the results I was shocked. In the heat of the moment I couldn’t see my family’s reaction, but I sure could hear them. My little girl dream had finally come true with all of my hard work.” Pageants have always been a part of her life. Riley believes, “They’re an amazing ay for young women to showcase personality, confidence and public speaking.“ She added, “From baby parade, Junior Royalty, Baby Harvest Queen, Junior/Senior Harvest Queen, Calendar Girl, FFA Sweetheart all the way to the Blueberry Festival—I’ve done them all.” Share a sentence from the local business ad you presented onstage? “Morrow Steel goes the extra mile with hard work and a down home feel to make your dreams complete!

Who would you like to thank for this success? God, my family, my church family, my “adopted” pageant moms (we call them that) and the list goes on forever.

Describe the shopping trips for Queen & Court matching outfits? AWESOME—all things red and bonding; the first two are selfexplanatory, but I say bonding because we were able to get to know each other and become Strawberry Sisters.

What are current reading and music favorites? The Great Gatsby; country oldies such as George Straight and Johnny Cash.

What excites you about the upcoming year? I plan on focusing on FFA and schoolwork in order to get into medical school. In my role as queen, I look forward to representing agriculture because it has always been a part of my life and now I can showcase it.

Who do you aspire to be like? My Dad—he was and is a leader in the community (military 25 years; reserve deputy for 15) and has touched many people’s lives. Given the opportunity, who would be a great dinner date? President Reagan, my favorite President because of his outstanding leadership and service to our country.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

53


54

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

FIRST MAID MORGAN GAUDENS The middle daughter of Henry and Melissa Gaudens attends Hillsborough Community College and plans to major in Business Management at the University of South Florida. As a state FFA winner and national competitor in Agriculture Issues, Morgan will represent well Plant City’s world-renown Florida Strawberry Festival and its community of related industries. Competing in the Queen’s Scholarship Pageant occurred to her a few years ago during the Grand Parade and watching those representatives at their many Festival appearances. Her only prior experience was three years of Strawberry Crest Calendar Girl competitions. The 2016 First Maid has a wide variety of interests from cooking and retail business to social media and event planning. Believing others see her as openhearted, funny, and cautious, Morgan explained: “I try my best never to judge a book by its cover and to be inviting in conversations to old friends and new. I make a point to always keep the mood light and playful, and I’m careful in how I act, what I say, and what I do in certain environments.” Were you nervous onstage? “’Nervous’ is an understatement. I’ve competed in FFA speaking competitions in front of thousands, but that was nothing compared to this pageant. When the final results were announced, I was overjoyed, and then speechless when they called my number for First Maid. To have had one of my best friends, Deanna Rodriguez (2015 First Maid) sash me made that moment all the more special.” And your family’s reaction? “Of course, so happy! I could see my sister Kendall and mom in the front row jump up in excitement. And my dad, a few rows back, almost passed out in his chair from excitement.” [Note: Kendall was recently crowned 2016 Junior Royalty Queen]

Share a little of your commercial presentation. “When someone you love becomes a memory, that memory becomes a treasure. Let Haught Funeral Home guide you as you treasure those memories forever.” In addition to Festival responsibilities, what do you expect for the year? “I attend HCC full-time and serve part-time at Carrabba’s Italian Grill. I look forward to representing the Festival and Plant City at all the community events. Being able to meet the Festival’s artists, vendors and supporters while shining a positive light on the Ag industry is what most excites me.”

Tyler, and Coach Tiffany—for all the support, help and guidance throughout the entire process. I love you all and wouldn’t have been able to do it without y’all!”

efforts as a UNICEF Ambassador, she was a classic female role model. I have always lived by and admired her quote: “Nothing is impossible. The word itself says ‘I’m possible.’”

You enjoy Country music, right? Yes! My favorite artists are Cole Swindell, Chris Young, Thomas Rhett, and Brett Eldredge.

Who would you thank for this success? “My mom Melissa and dad Henry, sisters Taylor and Kendall, boyfriend

Who is your role model? Audrey Hepburn. Aside from being a famous actress and her philanthropic

And an interesting dinner would be with whom? Other than a family member, I’d be honored to dine with Kellie Pickler. No matter her fame and fortune, she is and presents herself in a very humble and classy manner.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

55


5210 Thonotosassa Rd, Plant City, FL 33565 (813) 752 -9100 www.keelandcurleywinery.com | www.twohenrysbrewing.com

9TH ANNUAL BLUEBERRY FESTIVAL EVENT SCHEDULE Friday, 4/29 and Saturday, 4/30 from 8AM to 11PM Sunday, 5/1 from 10AM to 7PM U-Pick Blueberries 7AM - 5PM each day • FREE Admission & Live Enterainment • Over 100 Food & Craft Vendors + Kids Area • $5.00 Parking Fee / Free Handicap Parking • Limited Edition Strawberry Shortcake Wine available. St. Clement’s donates juice from their strawberry shortcakes & a part of the proceeds are donated back to the church.

56

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

COURT MEMBER

ALEX APONTE In her senior year, the daughter of William and Mary Aponte is President of Newsome High School’s FFA chapter. In addition to raising and showing steers, Alex enjoys ballroom dancing and local theater performances. She plans to major in Biology at the University of Florida and eventually become a cardiothoracic surgeon. New to the pageant world, she had only competed in one small school event prior. Her decision to enter the Florida Strawberry Festival Queen’s Scholarship Pageant came last year after she watched friend Emily Benoit become a 2015 Court Member and “heard all her amazing experiences.” The sister to Sam, 19, and Jonathan, 16, believes others see her as determined, independent, and compassionate. As a result of her selection, she shared: “I look forward to reporting Plant City as a whole. It’s great family town and I’m excited to get out there and be an advocate for my community.”

Were you nervous? Yes, very, and being contestant #1 only added to the nerves. But once onstage the nervousness went away. And your family’s reaction? My family was very proud and thrilled to see all my hard work had paid off. Share a few words from your commercial presentation. “So come on down to Fred’s Southern Market and enjoy their hospitality and don’t be afraid to loosen your belt and rub your belly.” How about the shopping trips? They were really how we five bonded. We had lots of laughs and tired feet by the end of the day, but we are so excited for everyone to see our adorable outfits.

For your success, to whom would you offer thanks? I’d like to thank my parents for always being behind me and encouraging me in every one of my endeavors. What is your current read and preference in music? I’m reading The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly, and my favorite music by far is country. I love everyone from Carrie Underwood to George Strait. Who do ou aspire to be like? My Ag teacher, Mrs. Ware. She is and always will be my role model and someone who has made a huge impact in my life. And great dinner converation would be with...? Carrie Underwood. I have always loved her music and would die to have the chance to meet her.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

57


58

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

COURT MEMBER

ASHTYN STEELE The daughter of Christopher and LaDonna Steele and sister to twelve-yearold Tristan is a Plant City High School junior, dual-enrolled at Hillsborough Community College. Her plans are to study Film at the University of Central Florida. Also an active First Baptist Church youth leader, Ashtyn believes others see her as hardworking, cheerful, and loyal. As her family’s first to compete in the Pageant, Ashtyn explained: “Growing up in Plant City, Strawberry Queen is something I’ve always dreamed of…looked up to the Queen and Court members. One day I hope to pass on with my own family the tradition I’ve started because it’s an important role in the Festival and Plant City’s history. I’m excited to become a role model in another little girl’s life, just like former members were mine.” Her only prior experience was First Maid in Little Miss Plant City and as Plant City High School’s 2016 Calendar Cover Girl. She shared, “Ashlyn Yarbrough was in that LMPC court and now we are Strawberry Queen court members together. It’s awesome to have a best friend like her to go through life-changing experiences with me.” Were you nervous about the competition? “You have no idea how nervous I was. I couldn’t have done it without God, who gave me peace as the time approached. He gave me wisdom to know He has a perfect plan. When they announced my name for the 2016 Court, I was overjoyed at one of my life’s happiest moments, when everything I’ve dreamed of and worked so hard toward had paid off. How did family members react? They cried. Everyone knew the hard work and hours I practiced. They’re truly the most supportive family and always love me, win or lose. I couldn’t have made it without their constant encouragement and love.

Share a sentence from the Brewington’s Towing Company ad you presented. “After all, one call hauls it all.” What about the shopping for matching outfits? SO MUCH FUN! Shopping is one of my favorite things to do and doing it with four sweet girls, plus Mrs. Donna and Mrs. Di, made it even sweeter. Of the upcoming year, Ashtyn said: “I’m thrilled to participate in the Festival and events such as Relay for Life, emceeing at the Baby Parade, Lakeland’s Swan Derby, opening day of Plant City Little League, and much more! I am beyond excited about being a leader and role model to people of all ages. Being a positive light in the world is one of my main missions in life. Always let your life shine.”

She’s credits her mom for this success. “I would not have the confidence I have today without her. She was a constant reminder to me that God has a perfect plan. He made me in His image.” And current reading and music favorites? “I love educating myself through books, so I’m reading a series, How to Be a Lady, and learning etiquette ranging from how to properly address someone to table manners. My obsession with favorite artists, Dan & Shay, started at their Festival appearance last year.”

Someday, Ashtyn aspires to be like— “Ms. Charleene Closshey from Plant City has moved on to major roles in the acting industry. She is the definition of elegance and kindness and has taught me the importance of working hard and never giving up on a dream.” One dream dinner partner would be— “Taylor Swift, because she’s a huge role model to younger people. Since I want to enter the entertainment industry, it’s really cool to see her transitions and how she’s followed her dream to become one of today’s biggest celebrities.”

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

59


Celebrating heritage and harvests in the community. Since 1930, the Florida Strawberry Festival has brought people from across the state together to celebrate regional traditions, bountiful successes and to enjoy parades and entertainment. Mosaic is proud of the dedicated 4-H and FFA students who work tirelessly to make the Strawberry Festival’s livestock events a success. Mosaic salutes the community members and businesses that turn out annually to support youth agriculture and this history-rich event. We help the world grow the food it needs. ®

mosaicco.com/florida

APARTMENTS FOR SENIORS One bedroom Apartments • Rent based on income

Plant City Towers 103 W. Mahoney St. Plant City, FL 33563 813.752.5116

Plant City Living Center 405 E. Damon St Plant City, FL 33563 813.659.2669

Applications available at each location 60

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


2016 Florida Strawberry Festival

COURT MEMBER

ASHLYN YARBROUGH The daughter of Mark and Lori Yarbrough, and older sister to Katelyn is a Plant City High School junior and varsity cheerleader. She plans to major in Public Relations at the University of Florida and dreams of a PR job with the Tampa Bay Bucs because “I love the Bucs and Tampa’s close to home.” With top grades, numerous leadership roles, three mission trips to Haiti, writing two articles a month for Focus Plant City, and over 400 community service hours to her credit, Ashlyn brings a world of experience to her new role on the Strawberry Festival Queen’s court. She believes others see her as: “Someone with a passion for Jesus, with a compassionate heart for others and always willing to make a new friend.” “I’ve always wanted to be part of the Strawberry Queen experience because my Aunt Sherrie Mueller [1971 Queen], my mom Lori Yarbrough [1990 Court Member] and my grandma ‘Mady,’ Pec McGinnes [1966 Court Member], shared their stories of fun they’d had and made me want to try it out.” Her prior pageant experience included Junior Royalty at ages five and six, Little Miss Plant City at nine, and Calendar Girl last October. She shared, “I was so glad to get Miss January, and my best friend, Ashtyn Steele, who’s also in the Court, got Cover Girl.” Were you nervous about the competition? “I wasn’t really nervous onstage.” “I prayed God would give me a peace, whether I got in or not. I was so excited when they announced my name for top five. I just kept thinking what a great year this will be. How did family members react? “I’m pretty sure my sister [Katelyn] cried (ha ha)! They were all so excited. I have the best support system with my friends and family.” Share a portion of your “commercial” Plant City Awning & Aluminum. “We work with every type of budget and even create do-it-yourself kits for that built-in handyman you have at home.”

Describe the group’s shopping trip for Festival clothing. Definitely a great experience! I’m not much of a shopper, but the girls made it a lot of fun. We already have great memories and we’ve only been together a few weeks. What will this year hold for you? I have a lot of craziness going on this year. Classes are rigorous and I try to maintain straight A grades. It’s our offseason for cheer, so I’ll be bettering my skills for the next. I’ll also be involved in many service activities with First Baptist Church and school clubs. For this pageant’s success, she credits her family. “They support me in every aspect of my life and help me achieve everything I put my mind to.”

As to reading and music, Ashlyn offered: “I’m not much of a reader! I read my daily devotionals and am currently reading Romans. I love country music! George Strait is by far my favorite artist of all time.” A person you aspire to be like is— “My mom, Lori Yarbrough. She was the cheer captain, service club and senior class president and had the best grades in high school. She has always stayed true to who she is and never compromises

her values. She’s such a strong, beautiful Christian woman. I have very big shoes to fill. I am so thankful to have such an amazing woman like her as my ‘Momma.” Name one person you would enjoy having dinner with. Tim Tebow. I’d love to ask him about his football experience and his mission trips to the Philippines.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

61


SUNDAY , MARCH 6TH FANTA FAMILY DAY

Schedule Of Events 2016 FLORIDA STRAWBERRY FESTIVAL® Provided by the FL Strawberry Festival®

THURSDAY, MARCH 3RD

SATURDAY, MARCH 5TH

Florida Blue Senior Citizens Day Patrons 60 years of age or older get $2 off the gate admission of $10. O’Reilly Auto Parts Ride-A-Thon from noon-11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway for $20 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. Present voucher from participating O’Reilly Auto Parts stores at Midway to receive $3 off $20 wristband and ride all day for only $17.

Free Kids Day Kids through high school age admitted free. Super Saturday Wristband Day from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway for $30 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. Free Kids Day sponsored by MIDFLORIDA Credit Union. Dairy Shows sponsored by Grove Equipment Service. Youth Strawberry Stemming Contest sponsored by Mavric’s Chocolate Barn.

FLORIDA BLUE SENIOR CITIZENS DAY O’REILLY AUTO PARTS RIDE-A-THON DAY

10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 10:30 a.m.–Noon - Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra 11:45 a.m. - Senior Citizens Drawing 3:30 p.m. - Charley Pride 6:00 p.m. - Rosewood Creek 7:00 p.m. - Mosaic Youth Swine Show 7:30 p.m. - Josh Turner

FRIDAY , MARCH 4TH

PUBLIX FEEDING FLORIDA DAY MOONLIGHT MAGIC NIGHT

Publix Feeding Florida Day from noon-10:00 p.m. Present any Publix brand non-perishable item at entry gate and receive $5 off the regular price of $20 Fun Pack Ride Coupon Book. Moonlight Magic Ride most mechanical rides for one special price of $25 per person. All patrons entering the Midway will be required to purchase a $25 wristband, 10:00 p.m.2:00 a.m. All patrons are subject to search. Fried Corn on the Cob Eating Contest sponsored by Bayshore Services. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open Noon-4:00 p.m. - Meet Pro Football Hall of Famer Derrick Brooks 1:00 p.m. - Dairy Contestant Judging 2:00 p.m. - Fried Corn on the Cob Eating Contest 3:30 p.m. - Mickey Gilley 7:00 p.m. - Mosaic Youth Swine Sale 6:00 p.m. - Truitts 7:30 p.m. - BIG & RICH 10:00 p.m.–2:00 a.m. - Moonlight Magic

62

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

FREE KIDS DAY | YOUTH PARADE DAY SUPER SATURDAY WRISTBAND DAY

10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 11:00 a.m. - 43rd Annual Civitan’s FSF Youth Parade 11:00 a.m. - Dairy Show Showmanship Noon-4:00 p.m - Meet Pro Football Hall of Famer Derrick Brooks 1:00 p.m. - Dairy Show 2:00 p.m. - Youth Strawberry Stemming Contest 3:30 p.m. - Lecrae 6:00 p.m. - Danny Moody Band 7:30 p.m.–10:00 p.m. - Gospel Night featuring Pastor Calvin “Pee Wee” Callins 7:30 p.m. - Cheap Trick

Fanta Family Day Present any Fanta or Coca-Cola brand can or plastic bottle product at entry gate to receive a voucher for $5 off the $25 wristband and ride all day from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m. for only $20. Can or bottle is not valid for gate admission. Baby Contest sponsored by South Florida Baptist Hospital. Youth Plant Show & Sale sponsored by Gulf Coast Turf & Tractor. 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m. - Registration for Baby Contest 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 10:30 p.m.–12:30 p.m. - Baby Contest: Decorated Diaper Contest; Baby Features Contest; Diaper Derby 11:00 a.m. - Dairy Showmanship (Adults) 11:30 a.m. - Dairy Pee Wee Showmanshi 12:30 p.m. - Dairy Costume Ball 2:00 p.m. - Youth Plant Sale. 3:30 p.m. - Shenandoah 6:00 p.m. - HOLA Plant City! 7:30 p.m. - Donny & Marie

MONDAY, MARCH 7TH

GRAND PARADE DAY | RIDE-A-THON DAY

Ride-A-Thon from 10:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway for $20 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. Grand Parade Day sponsored by Walton Development and Management. Parade Luncheon sponsored by Tampa Electric Company. Lamb Shows sponsored by Bad Boy Mowers. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 10:00 a.m. - Invitational Parade Luncheon 1:00 p.m. - Grand Parade Begin 2:00 p.m. - Grand Parade Passes by the Festival


3:00 p.m. - The Home Depot Kids Workshop 3:30 p.m. - Gene Watson 5:00 p.m. - Lamb Showmanship & Show 6:00 p.m. - Jake Castro Band 7:30 p.m. - NRG 7:30 p.m. - LONESTAR

TUESDAY, MARCH 8TH TWOSDAY | RIDE-A-THON DAY

Twosday and Ride-A-Thon from noon-11:00 p.m. It’s your choice! Ride any single ride for only $2 or ride most mechanical rides all day with a $20 wristband purchased at the Midway. Twosday sponsored by Sunshine Bank. Adult Strawberry Stemming Contest sponsored by Chocolate Strawberry Express. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 2:00 p.m. - Adult Strawberry Stemming Contest 3:00 p.m. - Lamb Jumping Contest 3:30 p.m. - Dick Fox’s Golden Boys starring Frankie Avalon, Fabian & Bobby Rydell 7:00 p.m. - Lamb Costume Contest 6:00 p.m. - Denise Moore and Then Som 7:30 p.m. - Trace Adkins

WEDNESDAY , MARCH 9TH

AMERICAN HEROES DAY | RIDE-A-THON DAY

Ride-A-Thon from noon-11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway for $20 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. American Heroes Day All active, reserve, retired military, veterans, law enforcement and first responders are admitted free with valid ID. American Heroes Day sponsored by Friends of U.S. Military Families, LLC. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 1:00 p.m. - Super Dog Mega Corndog Eating Contest 3:30 p.m. - Ray Stevens 6:00 p.m. - Mosaic Youth Steer Show 6:00 p.m. - Bobby G. Summers 7:15 p.m. - Honor American Heroes 7:30 p.m. - Martina McBride

2:00 p.m. - Strawberry Shortcake Eating Contest 3:30 p.m. - Oak Ridge Boys 6:00 p.m. - Skyler Clark 7:30 p.m. - Casting Crowns

FRIDAY, MARCH 11TH

TAMPA BAY TIMES DAY ON THE MIDWAY MOONLIGHT MAGIC NIGHT

Tampa Bay Times Day on the Midway from noon10:00 p.m. Receive $5 discount with a coupon from the Tampa Bay Times for the $20 Fun Pack Ride Coupon Book. Moonlight Magic Ride most mechanical rides for one special price of $25 per person. All patrons entering the Midway will be required to purchase a $25 wristband, 10:00 p.m.2:00 a.m. All patrons are subject to search. Strawberry Mashed Potato Pie Eating Contest sponsored by Pickle Barrel Sirloin Tips 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. - Meet Pro Football Hall of Famer Derrick Brooksy 1:00 p.m. - Strawberry Mashed Potato Pie Eating Contest 3:30 p.m. - Tanya Tucker 6:00 p.m. - Beef Breed Showmanship 6:00 p.m. - Sara Rose Band 7:30 p.m. - COLE SWINDELL 10:00 p.m.–2:00 a.m. - Moonlight Magic

SATURDAY, MARCH 12TH

FARM WORKER APPRECIATION DAY SUPER SATURDAY WRISTBAND DAY

Farm Worker Appreciation Day sponsored by Astin Farms. Super Saturday Wristband Day from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway

for $30 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. Baby Parade sponsored by South Florida Baptist Hospital. 9:00 a.m. - Registration for Livestock Judging Contest 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 10:00 a.m. - Livestock Judging 10:15 a.m. - Baby Parade 3:30 p.m.- Merle Haggard 6:00 p.m. - The Moriah Project 7:00 p.m. - Mosaic Youth Steer Sal 7:30 p.m. - Cigar City Blues Bandt 7:30 p.m. - Charlie Wilson

SUNDAY, MARCH 13TH FANTA FAMILY DAY

Fanta Family Day Present any Fanta or Coca-Cola brand can or plastic bottle product at entry gate to receive a voucher for $5 off the $25 wristband and ride all day from 10:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m. for only $20. Can or bottle is not valid for gate admission. Youth Beef Breed Show sponsored by The Hay Exchange. Club Med Giveaway sponsored by Pulaski Tix & Tours. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 11:00 a.m. - Youth Beef Breed Show 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. - Meet Pro Football Hall of Famer Derrick Brooks 1:00 p.m. - Kitchen Craft Cookware Drawing 2:00 p.m. - Club Med Giveaway 3:30 p.m. - echosmith 5:00 p.m. - Stingray Chevrolet Vehicle Drawing 6:00 p.m. - HOLA Plant City! 7:30 p.m. - The Band Perry

THURSDAY, MARCH 10TH

FLORIDA BLUE SENIOR CITIZENS DAY O’REILLY AUTO PARTS RIDE-A-THON DAY

Florida Blue Senior Citizens Day Patrons 60 years and older get $2 off the gate admission of $10. O’Reilly Auto Parts Ride-A-Thon from noon-11:00 p.m. A wristband purchased at the Midway for $20 will entitle the wearer to ride most mechanical rides for this one low price. Present voucher from participating O’Reilly Auto Parts stores at Midway to receive $3 off $20 wristband and ride all day for only $17. 10:00 a.m. - Gates Open 10:30 a.m.–Noon - Tommy Dorsey Orchestra 11:45 a.m. - Senior Citizens Drawing FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

63


64

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

65


STRAWBERRY FARMERS

D & K Farms A FARMER’S SONS CONTINUE THE TEAMWORK HERITAGE

B

rothers Billy Keith Williams and Darryl Williams have never known a time when strawberries weren’t part of their life. The two Plant City natives own D & K Farms at 1510 Sparkman Road, which still contains the childhood home where sister Debbie Norris now lives. “We grew up in the business,” Darryl said. “Our parents farmed and we helped them every day after school.” What began with 50-60 acres of strawberries and other vegetables in the ‘60s grew until their parents, Billy and Mattie, had 120 acres of Plant City’s famous fruit. The couple had four lefthanded children, two girls and then two boys. Billy played multiple sports for Plant City High School (Class of ’72), while Darryl was active in Ag and FFA (Class of ‘77). He showed steers at the festival and fair competitions and eventually served three counties as FFA District President. “When Daddy retired in 1992, Billy Keith and I partnered with him and eventually incorporated as D & K Farms,” he explained. “Now we farm a couple hundred acres, with 50 of those in berries.” In the ‘90s, the brother duo decided to diversify into the hot pepper industry, too. Today 100 acres of chili peppers are planted and harvested in the spring and fall for a connection the two made with Bailey Farms in North Carolina. But strawberries remain their passion. “I eat two quarts a day,” said Billy. “And Mama, who worked right alongside Daddy in the fields every day, was famous for her three-layer strawberry cake made from our hand-selected best. She whipped the cream to layer with sliced/ smashed berries between each tier, too.” As a gourmet cook, Darryl is always on the lookout for ways to incorporate the farm’s crops into new dishes. For 18 years, eight members of the “Plant 66

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

City Gourmet and Viniculture Society” met monthly to share the meals two cooked for the other six on a rotating basis. One of the group’s favorite desserts was Strawberries Malio, fresh slices atop vanilla ice cream and smothered in amaretto (originated by the restaurant they supplied in Tampa). Despite the unusually warmer weather in November and December that has definitely impacted production, D & K Farms is expecting a good strawberry harvest. “We still have loyal customers Dad had 35-40 years ago and we’re thankful for our great employee base,” said Billy, “many who have worked for us 20 years. Now their sons and daughters work for with us, too.” As a team effort, D & K Farms allows the brothers time off when needed for special outings or family time. “That’s the beauty of a family farm,” offered Billy. “We can cover for each other.” Darryl added, “Plant City is a unique because of the many generational family businesses here, and not only on the farming side—folks like the Brownlees, Chambers, Knotts, Poppells, Rollysons and Varnums, just to name a few.” Billy continued, “It’s this generation doing what their dad did.” “A lot of great people in this town work really hard to continue their family’s history. Each generation has its challenges in the legacies they’re extending. “Dad got the same prices we get now, but our production costs are much higher,” he shared. “Strawberry farming is an ever-changing industry. In the ‘70s and ‘80s, to make more money you just planted another 10 acres of berries. Today another 10 acres is an $80,000 investment that you might lose.” Billy concluded, “But overall, we learned to work hard from Daddy and Mama. They were resourceful and honest. They built a good life for us and now it’s our turn. We’re proud to be farmers.”

D & K Farms co-owners and brothers Darryl Williams (left) and Billy Keith Wililams (center) grew up farming with their parents, Billy and Mattie Williams.

Co-owners and brothers Billy Keith Williams and Darryl Williams enjoy sharing the responsibilities for the family farm established by their parents

Strawberry Shortcake from recipe by Mattie Williams


STRAWBERRY FARMERS

Wish Farms

COMMUNITY-MINDED, GROWTH-ORIENTED, ETERNALLY GRATEFUL

F

ounded in 1922 and third-generation owned, Wish Farms is one of the largest shippers of strawberries in Florida and has been for over 50 years. Nationally recognized for quality and innovation, Wish Farms is a year round supplier of both conventional and organic strawberries and blueberries, and seasonal in select vegetables. Humble Beginnings What began in 1900 as the humble family business of Russian immigrant Harris Wishnatzki has grown into Wish Farms. From his pushcart produce sales in New York City, the family became involved in produce buying in Central Florida and eventually settled here. Since 1922, Wish Farms has been marketing fresh produce for independent growers and began it’s own growing operation in 1987. The company has evolved to become a supplier for growing operations across the Unites States, South America, and Canada. Third generation family-owner Gary Wishnatzki takes great pride in extending the legacy. Commitment to quality, service, sustainability, innovation, education, and strengthening the Wish Farms brand continues to be a Wish Farms priority. The Family Gary married his lovely wife Therese in 1979. Before their daughter, Elizabeth Wishnatzki Peterson, gave birth to her first child, she worked in the marketing department. These days she’s busy caring for an active two-year-old boy while her husband James serves the company as VP of Sales. With the birth of this grandson, the Wishnatzki family’s legacy has now grown to include five generations. The “family” also includes many long-term company employees who appreciate the Wish Farms approach to business. Grower Partnerships Carefully selected grower partners align with Wish Farms and its core values for: Quality: “We never fail to stand behind our product.” Integrity: “We never compromise integrity.” Responsiveness: “We never fail to respond promptly to the needs of growers, customers, and employees.” Consumer Awareness and Quality Control To support its year round berry program, Wish Farms utilizes How’s My Picking? ™, a patented tool for traceability to ensure quality by tying consumer feedback to specific information

from each day’s harvest. A call-to-action sticker on each package of Wish Farms berries includes a unique 16-digit number linking that package of fruit back to the picker. Consumers are asked to visit www. howsmypicking.com to complete a short survey and share feedback about their berries. Throughout the year, Wish Farms runs incentive programs to encourage consumer participation. Amber Maloney, Director of Marketing, explained, “Since the program launch we’ve seen a significant increase in surveys; providing valuable consumer data which we will use to make educated growing and marketing decisions moving forward.” Pairing the How’s My Picking? ™ traceability system to a consumer feedback promotion helps Wish Farms establish consumer brand loyalty while acting as an extension of our retailer’s customer service.” Reaching Out Socially In 2010, the company launched its consumer brand, Wish Farms featuring Misty, the Garden Pixie. Since that time the wishfarms.com website has been enhanced to include Misty’s Blog, Gary’s Corner, and great videos showcasing the Wish Farms process, along with wonderful recipes. Visit the website and social media regularly for fun industry updates! Community Support From the start, charity giving and community involvement has been an important focus of Wish Farms as well as the Wishnatzki family. Today, the company is actively involved in numerous local and national charity events; donating time, money and fresh berries. “This country was built on the backs of immigrants trying to find a better life and encouraging their children with training and education,” offered Wishnatzki. We believe it’s important to be involved in our communities and help in any way we can.” The company’s philanthropic efforts go beyond charitable donations. From 2005 thru 2013, Wish Farms hosted an annual Pro-Am Tennis Tournament to raise over $600,000 in 8 years for the University of South Florida Wishnatzki Family Migrant Scholarship Fund and the Redlands Christian Migrant Association (RCMA). The ultimate goal is to help develop leaders and improve educational opportunities for migrant children in Florida. The scholarship is awarded to a USF student from a migrant or seasonal farm worker family who is pursuing a graduate degree in education at the USF College of Education. Wish Farms now hosts an annual charity

Gary Wishnatzki is proud to continue his family’s farming legacy and the Wish Farms commitment to quality, community, and the industry’s future

event each February at one of its Plant City farms. The 3rd Annual Bright House Networks Strawberry Picking Challenge was held February 6, 2016. All proceeds benefit RCMA, a Florida nonprofit that provides quality childcare and early education for children of migrant farm workers and rural low-income families. In 2015, the event donated $76,000 to RCMA, which assists approximately 7,000 children in Florida. Gary Wishnatzki has served on the organization’s board of directors for the last five years. Wish Farms has helped raise more than $750,000 total for education. “We are proud members of the fresh produce industry and agricultural community,” explained Wishnatzki. “As an industry leader, Wish Farms believes we should actively help educate consumers, retailers, and lawmakers. Through communication and agritourism, we can work together to feed the world. “ Wish Farms is also the proud Soundstage sponsor at the world-famous annual Florida Strawberry Festival, where huge crowds can enjoy name entertainment twice daily during the 10-day event. In addition, towards the end of strawberry season, Wish Farms hosts an annual charity u-pick event open to the public. The next charity u-pick is set for Saturday, March 19, 2016. Finally, to determine if your community group or organization qualifies for fresh product donations, reach out to Wish Farms and its family of growers through e-mail to donations@ wishfarms.com.

Agritourism and Wish Farm Tours In recent years, agritourism and learning how food is produced has become a growing interest. People want to meet growers and visit farms to see direct food sources and better appreciate everything that goes into bringing food to the table. Wish Farms is a supporter of agritourism and sees value in educating our youth, retailers and lawmakers. The company has provided tours for the Ag Institute of Florida and Congressional Farm Tours as well as International farm groups with an interest in agriculture. “We do our best to accommodate tour groups interested in visiting our farms,” said Amber Maloney, Marketing Director. “As an operating farm, adherence to property and food safety precautions is critical, but other tours are offered on a limited basis. Please keep in mind that harvest season is an extremely busy time.” Schools and organizations are invited to apply for a pre-scheduled, 30-minute farm tour and overview of the Wish Farms family business by emailing farmtours@wishfarms.com. Another great way to connect is to sign up as a Wish Farms Berry Lover and receive the company’s Misty the Garden Pixie digital children’s book. Berry lovers also receive special offers, what’s in season updates, feature recipes & more! For more information about Wish Farms, please visit www.wishfarms.com or www. facebook.com/wishfarms.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

67


See Us At The Strawberry Festival!

1407 W. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. Plant City, FL

Strawberry Shortcake Served Daily

Plant City - Lakeland - Riverview - Lake Mary 68

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

69


Strawberry Fun Facts 21 FACTS YOU MAY NOT KNOW Article By Cheryl Johnston

The Florida Strawberry Festival®, recognized as one of the best festivals in the country, ranks among the Top 40 Fairs in North America. 1. More than 100 annual events in 34 states celebrate the strawberry. 2. Taxpayers do NOT subsidize The Florida Strawberry Festival®. 3. A non-paid board of 30 directors and associate directors, selected by election from among local community residents, governs the event. Only a handful of paid staff members work year ‘round. 4. 81 queens have worn the Florida Strawberry Festival® crown since 1930 when the Lions Club established the Festival. 5. In 1948, American Legion Post #26 helped reactivate the Festival following a six-year hiatus during and immediately following WWII (from 1942-1947) 6. Approximately 3,000 free seats are available in the concrete stadium bleachers on a first-come/firstserve basis (as part of the paid gate admission) for many of the 3:30 and 7:30 p.m. daily headline concerts on the Wish Farms soundstage. 7. The Neighborhood Village and the Art Show are two popular displays of local talent for cooking, sewing, and fine arts visitors can enjoy. 8. To ensure you’re buying Floridagrown winter strawberries, look on 70

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

the container for “Jammer,” FSGA’s new mascot. A live, costumed Jammer makes personal appearances at special events. Jammer even has his own Facebook page. See more at:strawberrysue.com/ about#sthash.4yg17yI2.dpuf 9. According to the Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association, of Florida’s statewide $148.5 billion in industry revenue, $307 million stems from strawberries. 10. Hillsborough County is now one of the largest agricultural counties in the nation, with more than 8,000 acres of strawberries planted annually in the local area. Some 2,800 county farms produce fruit and vegetable crops with an annual value of over $400 million. 11. One acre produces about 50,000 pounds of strawberries, the first fruit to ripen in spring. Once picked, the rich in fiber fruit will not ripen. Eight ounces equal 55 calories and contain eleven grams of carbohydrates. 12. Today strawberries are grown on every continent except Antarctica. 13. The top two strawberry-producing states in America are CA and FL. 14. Americans eat approximately 3.4 pounds of fresh strawberries each year, plus 1.8 pounds of frozen.

15. Typically, 22-27 berries are needed to fill a 1-pound clamshell. When the fruit is smaller due to higher fall temperatures, a clamshell will hold nearly 35 berries. 16. Among all fruits profiled as the World’s Healthiest Foods, strawberries ranks as the best fruit source of the pivotal antioxidant vitamin C in several nationwide studies conducted in different countries. 17. Strawberries contain more vitamin C than any other berry. Just eight medium strawberries contain more vitamin C than one orange. 18. Strawberries are best when served at room temperature. 19. Strawberries, which are members of the rose family, are the only fruit with

seeds on the outside. Most contain 150-200 seeds. The berries actually reproduce with long shoots of new growth rather than the seeds. 20. Although not mentioned in the Bible, strawberries (originally called strewberries) have been representative symbols of righteousness and perfection. They were served at important functions in medieval times to bring peace & prosperity. In the early 15th century western European monks were using the wild strawberry in their illuminated manuscripts. 21. Folklore: If you split double berry in half & share with opposite sex, you will soon fall in love. The fruit is considered to be an aphrodisiac in many cultures.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

71


RussellsWesternWear.com TAMPA • WESLEY CHAPEL • BRANDON • LAKELAND • OCALA • BRADENTON 72

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

73


brokepoor.com 74

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


STRAWBERRY RECIPES

Strawberry Swirl RECIPE COURTESY OF HELEN PARKE OF PARKESDALE FARMS 1 cup graham cracker crumbs 1/4 cup butter, melted 2 cups slided fresh “Parkesdale” strawberries 1 cup whipped cream 1 package of strawberry jello (3 oz.) 1 T. sugar 1 cup boiling water 1/2 pound of marshmallow fluff 2 T. sugar to taste

Mix crumbs, butter, and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Press firmly into a 9-inch glass baking dish. Chill. Sprinkle the other 2 tablespoons of sugar over fresh berries and let stand 30 minutes. Add water to juice to make 1 cup and add to jello. Chill until partially set. Fold whipped cream into the marshmallow fluff. Add berries to jello, then swirl in marshmallow and whipped cream mixture, to marble. Pour into crust. Chill until set.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

75


STRAWBERRY RECIPES

Florida Strawberries A Taste of Summer all Winter Long!

The following recipes are provided by Sue Harrell, known affectionately as Strawberry Sue, the Director of Marketing for the Florida Strawberry Growers Association (FSGA). Follow the blog of this seasoned strawberry grower to be informed and inspired about all things strawberry. You’ll find helpful strawberry-related links, year-round news from the fields, special events and easy to prepare strawberry dishes. - See more at: www.strawberrysue.com

Strawberry and Goat Cheese Bruschetta 1 whole baguette 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil Freshly-cracked pepper 1 cup of sliced Florida strawberries 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar 4 ounces fresh goat cheese

Preheat oven to 350°F. Slice baguette into four pieces and then slice each in half, lengthwise. Place the baguette open-faced on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Dust with cracked ground pepper. and toast the in the oven until golden brown. While baguette is toasting toss strawberries, basil and balsamic vinegar in a small bowl. When bread is toasted golden brown, remove from oven and spread goat cheese across each slice. Top goat cheese with prepared strawberries and serve. Makes eight servings. 76

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


STRAWBERRY RECIPES

Rustic Strawberry Tart There is absolutely no easier and more delicious breakfast dish than this. I usually serve it when I have overnight guests or as a delicious treat to a Sunday brunch. A combination such as fresh peaches and Florida strawberries are a perfect duo. 1 tablespoon butter or enough non-stick cooking spray to grease skillet 1/2 (15 ounce) package refrigerated pie dough 3 cups Florida strawberries, washed, caps removed, allowed to dry and sliced into quarters, lengthwise 1/3 cup sugar 1 tablespoon cornstarch 1 teaspoon ice water 1 teaspoon granulated sugar 1/2 pint whipping cream 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare bottom and sides of a 10-inch cast-iron skillet with butter or non-stick cooking spray. If you’re lucky enough to own a skillet that was passed down from your grandmother or other great family cook, that’s perfect. Arrange one of the uncooked crusts in the skillet, more or less, evenly. It’s not even necessary to roll out the dough. It will fit nicely. Note: Most refrigerated pie dough brands have enough product in each package to give you a second opportunity to make a delicious pie or tart another day. Place cut strawberries in a medium bowl; add sugar and cornstarch and toss gently. Set aside for about 20 minutes. Pour strawberry mixture into center of skillet and fold the edges of the dough toward the center, leaving a 2-inch border so the strawberries are visible in the center of the skillet. The dough will only partially cover the strawberry mixture. Brush edge of dough with 1 teaspoon water and sprinkle evenly with 1 teaspoon granulated sugar. Bake at 375 degrees for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside to cool slightly. Whip cream until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and continue beating for about 20 seconds. Stir in vanilla. When tart has cooled slightly spoon into individual serving dishes. Pass the whipped cream. Makes four servings. Note: Chill cream bowl and beaters before whipping. Don’t over whip. Stop when peaks are soft. Add sugar and vanilla at the end of the whipping. Dollops of cream may be frozen on waxed paper. FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

77


78

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


You see them in Movies, T.V. Commercials and in Magazines!

KARISSA HAGEMEISTER Publix Training Film and Print Ad Principal Role. $375.00 A Day. CALL FOR AN APPOINTMENT TODAY!

CHRISTIAN ULYSSE Publix Training Film and Print Ad. Principal Role. $375.00 A Day.

ISABELLA McCLINTOCK Disney World and Magic Kingdom TV Commercial.

They’re the JESS ANDERSON MODELS!

All ages & types needed • No experience necessary • Free training

SOUTH FLORIDA AVENUE, SUITE 115 • LAKELAND, FL 33813 863-688-9939 1037Established For 35 Years

TRISTAN BARTHEL Disney World, Magic Kingdom TV Commercial. Polk Life Magazine Easter Fashion Shoot.

LIC#1290000013

ASHLEY STREET Paul Mitchell Beauty Fashion Hair Show. Principal Role. $275.00

RICHARD GALLOWAY Publix Training Film and Print Ad Principal Role. $375.00 A Day.

www.jessandersontalentandmodelagency.com

Jess Anderson MAR16.indd 1

2/6/2016 7:11:52 AM

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

79


80

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

81


B Helping Hands, Caring Hearts

110 West Reynolds St., Suite 106 Plant City, FL, 33563 (813) 737-6707 helpingyoufl.com On call 24 / 7

Leonard and Christine Barfield of Helping Hands, Caring Hearts have a heart for helping others who prefer to convalesce at home

HELPING HANDS, CARING HEARTS A NEW LEVEL OF HOUSEKEEPING BY ANDRIA BARRIOS

S

everal businesses throughout the Plant City community reach out their helping hands in their own unique ways. Helping Hands, Caring Hearts, established in 2007 reaches out through housekeeping and beyond. Christine Barfield and her husband Leonard run the business, and couldn’t be more proud of how far it’s come. The inspiration for the company came after an accident Christine had in the year 2000 which left her bedridden for nearly a year, even forcing her to spend some time in a nursing home. “It was not a pleasant experience,” she recollects. “But I said if I ever got back on my feet again, I wanted to give back.” The Barfields then took a step on faith. Leonard quit his job and they started a business all on their own. “It was a scary transition, and totally out of my league, but we did it,” says Christine, 82

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

who was a banker for 23 years before the accident. This shows the passion and personal experience behind the care, which makes it so extraordinary and effective. It’s certainly paid off, as the company now has 30 employees and a running clientele which serves all of Hillsborough, Pasco, Polk and Highland counties. Helping Hands, Caring Hearts does more than just housekeeping. They add meal preparation, transportation, laundry duty, linen changing and medication reminders to their list, too, along with virtually any other household need of the client. Much of the business is focused on the elderly and disabled. They have ministered to bedridden pregnant mothers, victims of car accidents and virtually anyone over 18 and in need of their services.

“It’s awesome and so rewarding,” explains Barfield, who feels satisfied in knowing she’s preventing people from going into nursing homes or facilities. “Everyone wants to stay in their own home, especially in the last years of their life. It’s my passion to keep them there where they’re happy.” What sets the business apart is the constant accessibility and loyalty to clients’ families. The business remains on call 24 hours a day and does not have a recording. They’ve served at various nursing homes and local hospitals as well. “We do most anything to help clients as long as it’s within the boundaries of our

license.” Barfield also mentioned that they are insured, bonded and licensed by the state of Florida. True to its name, the business and staff makes a point to connect with clients and learns to love them like family. They’ve served several long term clients with their longest being for 5 and a half years, 7 days a week. Helping Hands, Caring Hearts also belongs to the Lions Club and works the Lion’s food booth at the Strawberry Festival. “Stop by the Arthur Boring Building and say hello!” invites Barfield. “We also make contributions to various organizations like Wounded Warriors and Shriners.” To learn more about Helping Hands, Caring Hearts Inc., or to make an appointment, visit www. helpingyoufl.com or www.facebook. com/Helping-Hands-Caring-HeartsInc-116350661735718/ or call 813-7376707. Appointments can also be made at the office located at 110 West Reynolds St. Ste 106, Plant City, FL, 33563.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

83


84

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


CONGRATULATIONS

Ariel Navarette 2016 MISS CONGENIALITY

1804 James L. Redman Pkwy Plant City, FL 33563 PlatinumBank.com

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

85


PLANT CITY’S

BEST KEPT

R

SECRET NEW HOME COMMUNITY AT PARK PLACE

ONLY 38 SIT REMAININGES !

MYTHS ABOUT CREDIT REPORTS AND MORTGAGES PART 2

• 71 Home Sites on large, oversized lots • Private, gated community located 3 minutes from I-4 • Natural gas, Double-paned thermal windows, and icynene foam insulation. • Custom gourmet brick kitchens • 2, 3, and 4 car garages • No lot premiums and No CDDs fees • Prices from mid $170s...including home site • Energy Star Certified

1809 N. Gordon Street, Plant City, FL 33563

Call Model Center at 813-767-5175

86

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

BY NATE DAVIS

M

y previous column detailed three common myths I hear about credit reports and their effects on financing a home. Having worked in the mortgage industry for a while, I’ve heard a lot of them. Since last month, I received a couple more questions about this topic. Here they are: Myth: The credit bureau is the one who approves or denies your loan. There are three main credit bureaus that report your credit scores. They are Equifax, Transunion and Experian. These reporting agencies compile information from your creditors and neither approve, nor deny your mortgage loan. Lenders are the ones who decide based on what’s in the credit report. Myth: If you pay off a past-due account, it will be removed from your credit report. It can take up to seven years for a derogatory account to disappear from

your credit report. Time must elapse to rid your report from a negative account, judgment or collection. As such accounts age, though, typically your scores will increase. However, if you continue to receive negative reporting for things like paying accounts late, then it may prevent your score’s improvement. Regardless of any “myths” you may have heard, my team (813-707-6200) has helped countless people obtain mortgage financing who were leery because they listened to them. Let me know about any myths you may have heard, and the answers may end up here in the future. Florida Mortgage Firm is an Equal Housing Opportunity Lender, NMLS #289323 NMLS #294701.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

87


88

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


From Pumping to Major Repairs WE DO IT ALL. With QUALITY SERVICE Since 1964 • 3rd Generation Family Business

SEWERS - PORTABLES- PRECAST

Servicing SPECIAL EVENTS • FARMERS • CONSTRUCTION Portable w/Sinks • Holding Tanks

Are You Being Charged Fuel Service Charges? Is Your Company Making Sure You’re GAP & Food Safety Compliant?

NOW HIRING CDL Drivers Please Call!!

“Bingham’s Onsite Precast” Manufacturing Precast Tanks ATU Systems

Emergency Service

Cleaning • Sludge Management Installation • Drain Field Repair Grease Trap Repair Member of the FLORIDA ON SITE WASTEWATER ASSOCIATION Licensed, Bonded & Insured We Comply With New State Laws State Certiied Numbers SA0900466 & 29-QH00007 Company Certiied Number 1442 • Master Contractor SM0890840

Plant City Dover / Brandon www.binghamonsite.com

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

89


See why everyone is driving to Bartow to buy a car from TOM EDWARDS.

WALDEN LAKE REVIEW

BEST PRICE, BEST SERVICE FOR OVER 40 YEARS

BY NATALIE SWEET

Come to TOM EDWARDS CHRYSLER DODGE JEEP to get that personal down home touch that will save you money!

TOM EDWARDS (813) 708-1181

Monday - Friday 8:30am - 7:30pm • Saturday 9am - 5pm Closed Sunday for Family

HWY 37

CHRYSLER DODGE JEEP 1425 W. Main St (Hwy 60 W), Bartow, FL 33830

N

HWY 60

www.edwardschrysler.com

90

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

R

The Walden Lake Community Association Board Meetings are the third Monday of each month at the Walden Lake Community Association office building on Griffin Boulevard in Walden Lake. The next meetings are scheduled for February 15th and March 21st at 7:00 PM. The meetings are open to all Walden Lake residents. Watch the announcement boards at all entrances for dates and times for special meetings and events. The new Walden Lake Sports Complex at the Polo Field is just about ready to enjoy with a Soccer Field, Baseball Diamond, Four Square and the large Cabana. This is a great addition to our community! Recently Visions Golf submitted revised plans to the City of Plant City Planning and Zoning Department outlining new plans with a reduction in the number of units, along with new buffers, building heights and more. As always, the best source to know what is happening is to visit the City’s website at www.PlantCityGov.com. On the home page, there is a link that takes you to where you can find communication between Visions Golf and the City as well as reports, studies and drawings submitted by Visions. During the month of January, there were 11 sales in Walden Lake with an average sale price of $244,750 and 2 sales in Walden Lake East with an average sale price of $171,450. The average number of days on

the market was 47 days. The January sales are as follows: 3014 Sutton Woods Drive 3051 Sutton Woods Drive 3001 Pine Club Drive 2401 Clubhouse Drive 2931 Spring Hammock Drive 1725 Brookstone Drive 2807 Spring Meadow Drive 4117 Kipling Avenue 2007 Sycamore Lane 2104 E Timberlane Drive 108 Seville Court S 2627 Eagle Green Drive

$344,900 $315,000 $295,000 $265,000 $262,500 $243,000 $241,000 $223,000 $179,000 $163,900 $141,000 $129,000

There are currently 26 Active listings for sale in Walden Lake and Walden Lake East with an average list price of 208,965 and an average of 97 days on the market. There are 17 properties Pending Contract with an average list price of $287,899 and average of 102 days on the market. If you are considering selling your home, be sure to price it in the market and have it in the best condition possible. The United Food Bank is always in need of donations and to make it easy, you can drop any food donations off at the HOA office. Feel free to contact me about any real estate questions or about this article. NSweet@KW.com or 813-758-9586.


CALL TODAY TO SCHEDULE A TOUR OF THIS DISTINCTIVE COMMUNITY

Take Polk Pkwy. to Harden Blvd. Exit, turn left & Grasslands is 1 mile on left.

Mon-Fri 9-5 | Sat 10-5 & Sun 12-5 1301 Grasslands Blvd., Ste. 100, Lakeland 863.647.1100 | Pat Jones 863.581.4699 Dani Miller 863.255.2276

GRASSLANDSHOMES.COM

YOUR NEW SANCTUARY ESTATE VILLA IS A TRUE ORDINARY LIVING IN GRASSLANDS

finest

Retreat FROM

COMMUNITY.

v 24 Hour Manned Entry

Maintenance Free v Lifestyle

v Award Winning Design v Water and Golf Views

PAT JONES

DANI MILLER

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

91


92

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

93


ATHLETE OF THE MONTH

S

Tykee Wallace is truly a rising star. He will begin classes in the fall at Armwood High School o be a part of their highly accomplished and widely recognized football program. Wallace aspires to play college football and dreams of being drafted one day by the National Football League. Being a triple-threat in sports, you can bet local coaches and our community will be keeping an eye on this incredibly talented athlete.

Plant City Dolphins wide receiver and defensive back was thrilled with the team’s Super Bowl championship title this past season.

TYKEE WALLACE TRIPLE SPORT ATHLETE

BY ASHLYN YARBROUGH | PHOTOS PROVIDED BY TYKEE WALLACE

H

igh school sports get a lot of praise in small towns like Plant City, Florida. What some people tend to forget about are the rising athletes in the local middle schools. Tomlin Middle School eighthgrader Tykee Wallace is an outstanding three-sport athlete whose hard work and dedication to greatness is catching the eye of the coaches and community across town. Wallace’s primary sport is football. He played as a wide receiver and defensive back for the Varsity Plant City Dolphin’s organization. His team took home the Super Bowl championship title this past season. “Winning the Super Bowl was definitely my most proud moment of my athletic career,” Wallace

94

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

shared. Wallace excels not only in football, but he also dominates in track and field. He competes in the 4x100-meter relay, the 100-meter dash, and the long jump. “Track is just awesome,” he said. “It’s a lot of fun and I love that I can prove my speed through the sport.” This past winter, he made it all the way to the state championship track meet at the middle school level, placing third in the state for the long jump. Needless to say, Tomlin Middle School and his family were very proud of this accomplishment. With football being held in the summer and fall, and track in the winter, Wallace realized he had a little down time during the spring. So, he took up another sport: soccer. The high-energy,

fast paced games are no shock to the student who now plays goalie for Tomlin. “I really do like soccer,” he offered. “Being athletic, I like to try new sports and it has been a lot of fun.” Of course, Wallace’s achievements would have been a lot more difficult without the solid support system he’s able to lean on. “My mom and brothers always motivate me. They push me to be my very best and tell me to never give up,” he explained. Besides his family, Wallace considers TJ Chase as his main inspiration. Chase is the senior wide receiver at Plant City High School who has committed to play football at Clemson University this fall. “TJ is someone whom I can look up to for advice,” Wallace stated. “I can always count on him for tips on how to be great in football and any other sport I play.” “If I could give advice to any younger athlete, it would be to keep striving. Do your best, and never give up,” said Wallace.

Tykee Wallace will attend Armwood High School next year to play for their stellar football program. His dreams include collegiate football and a pro career with the NFL.


D S

ISCOUNT CREENING Marty Johnson

Inc.

Specializing in ReScReening & RepaiR Since 1983

Pool Enclosures

Screen Entryways

Window Screens

Screen Rooms Lanais

New Doors & Hardware Pet Screen & Pet Doors

Vinyl Window Repairs Aluminum Repairs

5 Year Warranty on rescreening 10 Year Warranty on super-screening

We Will Meet or Beat Any Advertised Price! Free tes a estim

www.discountscreeninginc.com

813-752-3306

1406 W Knights Griffin Rd Plant City, FL 33565

lice & in nsed sure d FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

95


TEAM OF THE MONTH

S

a lot of fun!” The group gathers every Tuesday and Thursday from 8-11a.m. They line up their rackets against the wall and the next four in line are the ones who play the proceeding game. The winning team of two splits into two separate teams and two more players will accompany each member for the next round. The main goal for the program at the moment is expansion. “We absolutely love new players,” Midili said. “By having different players with different strengths, everyone can benefit and better their skills.” Whenever new people come to try out pickleball, experienced players take them under their wing. At first, they will

E

play a few easy games to get the hang of the sport. “The best way for people to improve is to practice on their own terms,” stated Midili. The YMCA pickleball program is, as Midili would say, a great day of fun and exercise! The game is a fun way to work on one’s cardio and agility. They all laugh, socialize, and have a wonderful time. One member even claims “It’s fun even when you lose!” For active folks looking for a new sport, the YMCA pickleball program is a super option. YMCA membership is required, and anyone can play whenever the courts are open. Come join the fun!

The YMCA pickleball league consists of the following players: Gary Zeller, Fred Difani, Dub McGinnes, Laura Curtis, Bruce Curtis, Bill Lingenfelter, Glenda Midili, and Starr Anderson.

PICKLEBALL SILLY NAME, SERIOUS GAME BY ASHLYN YARBROUGH

I

n 1965, in a city near Seattle, Washington, three dads came together to create a new activity to keep their kids entertained; their result was pickleball. The sport is similar to tennis, but with a lower net, smaller court, hard paddle, and whiffle ball. Pickleball started as a family game and grew to be popular all across America and Canada. The Plant City, Florida YMCA has recently adopted the new activity and it has become very popular across town. The YMCA’s pickleball program began about a 18 months ago. George Banning was very instrumental in the start of the local activity. He donated nets, paddles, balls, and other equipment so people could play. Bob Eukovich also played a huge role in getting people together to compete in the friendly game. Now there is an average of about

96

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

15 athletes who enjoy the sport at each gathering. One of pickleball’s great draws is the wide range of ages in people who can participate. The YMCA’s program is comprised primarily of retired locals looking to be active in their leisure time. On occasion, young adults drop in for a workout before heading off to work; or even grandchildren come with their grandparents to experience the fun. “We love it when young people come to play with their speed and agility,” expressed Glenda Midili, a frequent member of the YMCA pickleball league. Not only is it welcoming to athletes of all ages, but pickleball can be competitive at any skill level. “It can be both fun and competitive,” explained Midili. “It’s a fabulous game. We are primarily recreational; everyone is very encouraging of each other. That makes it

Glenda Midili is one of the organizers of the current YMCA pickleball league.

Starr Anderson makes a great return in her pickleball match.


E

Seth O’Neal caught his first bull red while fishing with Blackneck Adventures.

FISH TALES BY MIKE GOODWINE

Hello! It’s Captain Mike Goodwine, here to welcome you to Fish Tales. I’ll be giving monthly fishing reports on where the fish are biting and sharing fishing tips. Each month I’m also gonna pick the catch of the month, selected from photos emailed to me @Blaclneckadventures.com.

W

e’re in the middle of winter and that means time for the breeders to show up. February through May is the prime time to catch a trophy red fish. Beef up your tackle and don’t be afraid to use bigger baits. When targeting big breeder reds, look for deep channels or passes. Use a 3oz or bigger weight to keep your bait down in one spot due to strong currents within the passes. Try using cut bait:

ladyfish or mullet. Have patience and let your bait soak. The most important part isn’t the catch but the release. Make sure you hold the red by its tail until he’s fully recovered and ready to be released. Hold the fish in the water until your ready for the quick picture or video. These fish are old and take more care than your average slot red. Enjoy catching a fish of a lifetime and remember to live and let fish.

FISHING TIP OF THE MONTH. Patience is the key. Once your pole doubles over, flip the bail on your reel and count to 10. Engage your reel, then tighten up your drag. Check it with your hand and then set the hook. All of that might seem to take an eternity, but it gives the fish a chance to swap the bait around in its mouth before they swallow it. If it swallows, cut the line instead of trying to remove the hook.

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

97


E

serve with gladness out of the overflow of God’s love in my life. I am grateful for His grace and mercy, so I serve others out of that. I love because He first loved me.” Does Tori serve with you? Thompson: “My wife has served with me in Student Ministry in many different capacities; she has been a great support. She has prayed for me and pushed me and supported me the entire way.”

Walt and Tori Thompson

LEADERS IN FAITH

What ministry dream is yet unfulfilled? Thompson: About three years ago God began to put a passion in me for the unreached people of the world, including those unreached in our own backyard. Statistically, new church plants reach more lost people than the established church, so my dream would be to plant a church wherever God leads. My dream is being fulfilled in part as I am currently in transition from Hopewell Baptist Church where I have grown and learned the last five years, to a new church plant here in Plant City called City Pointe Church. I am being sent by Hopewell to help support this new church plant as their Student Pastor.

How would you encourage those who are searching for faith? Thompson: “Christianity is not just a ‘box to check’ in order to be right with God and ensure safety in eternity. You have access to God the Father through Jesus Christ and when people are truly changed from hearing the Gospel, it will greatly impact them and their lives. Following Jesus will cost you your life, but Jesus is worth it and more. And to those who already know Christ? Thompson: Remember who God is and what He has done for you, continue meeting with other like-minded people and let God work freely in and through you to reach all people with the amazing Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Favorite Scripture Then He said to them all, “If anyone DESIRES to come after Me, let him DENY himself, and take up his cross DAILY, and follow Me. - Luke 9:23

WALT THOMPSON BY CHERYL JOHNSTON

W

ith family roots that run five generations deep here, Plant City native Walt Thompson is firmly planted in ministry. The Youth Minister at Hopewell Baptist Church is being sent with their blessings to assist the new City Pointe Church as Student Pastor. He and Tori, his wife of 10 years, have two children, Tylie (9) and Trace (7). What brought you to the Christian faith? Thompson: “I was 9 years old at Crossroads Baptist in Lithia when I came to know the Lord. I began serving as a youth pastor in ministry at age 23. God really placed a passion in me for true outreach and discipleship. I have had some really great opportunities 98

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

at Hopewell Baptist Church to help start a couple of ministries that have impacted our community in a great way. The Jackson Elementary “Hope Bags,” ‘Hope in Action Block Parties,’ and other neighbor-to-neighbor ministries were all birthed from a passion God gave me to show love to and reach people who were not being reached. I also have former students now serving in other churches in ministry capacities. Describe what you love about your work. Thompson: “I enjoy serving in ministry because it is what I am called to do, but it also helps people by meeting their needs, being there to comfort them and most importantly, it allows me to share the love of Christ with them. I

Walt Thompson ministers to the youth at Hopewell Baptist Church


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

99


100

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


E

Organize your jewelry in a flash with Command Hooks so you’ll wear those favorite pieces more often.

GET ORGANIZED

Your Total Car Care Specialists • Established 1975

ORGANIZING YOUR JEWELRY BY KRISTEN TONEY CAMPBELL

Kristen is the voice behind www.theroadtodomestication.com, where she blogs on all things home and garden, with lots of emphasis on organization! She is married to a very patient man, and together they parent a very mischievous cat, a very happy dog, and they all enjoy home improvement projects and traveling.” We encourage you to visit her blog to learn more.

A

nd just like that, Valentine’s Day has come and gone. It’s half-way through February, and, if you’re like me, you’re still trying to get a handle on those New Year’s Resolutions. Am I right? No worries! If one of those resolutions was “to get organized,” I have a simple organizing solution for you today: organizing your jewelry with hooks. Now, there may be some of you who received jewels for Valentine’s Day. Or maybe some who have SO MUCH jewelry you just can’t accept one more piece! Perhaps you use a nice jewelry box to hold it all, or maybe you keep every item in its original container. No matter where you fall in the line of possibilities, we can all agree that we WEAR the jewelry more often if it is more accessible to us! If each morning you’ve dressed yourself for the day, and you’re constantly trying to untangle chains and looking for missing earrings, chances are that, eventually, you’ll skip wearing jewelry all together. Oh, and THIS time of the year, if you can’t find your strawberry jewelry to sport at the Strawberry Festival, well, that could be frustrating!

TRANSMISSIONS 2303 Jim Redman Parkway Plant City, Florida 33563 www.remcotrans.net

CHRIS (813) 752-5347 M-F 8AM to 5:30PM

So, allow me to present a very simple solution. Command Hooks. First of all, find the perfect spot for your jewelry to be stored. Perhaps you’d like to keep it in the closet by your clothes. Or maybe right near the mirror. You could even choose to display your jewelry on a prominent wall in your bedroom! Once you’ve chosen the perfect spot, run right up to Walmart here in Plant City and you’ll find a plethora of Command Hooks – all shapes and sizes and colors! Choose your color, style and size, and then head back to your perfect jewelry spot. Create three rows of hooks secured to the wall in your chosen spot, and then place your jewelry: top row = rings and earrings, second row = bracelets, bottom row = necklaces. You’ve just organized your jewels in a cost-effective and efficient manner, and, the next time you’re prepping for the day, you’ll be able to see all of your options! You know what they say – life’s short. Wear the pearls! If you’d like to see more tips for organization (plus recipes, home decor and DIY solutions) check out Kristen’s blog at www.theroadtodomestication.com. FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

101


E

CANDY’S CORNER BY CANDY OWENS

T

his past weekend I was driving through one of Tampa’s older neighborhoods (Egypt Lake) on my way to visit my boyfriend when I spotted a pink neon sign that said: “Estate Sale.” I thought to myself: “That looks interesting.” When I arrived at Scottie’s house I mentioned that I’d seen an Estate Sale sign a few blocks from away and he said, “Let’s go!” So off we went. We followed the signs to 7801 Gomez Avenue where we found people looking through boxes of records, games, books, clothing, and etc. I happened to notice a blanket covered with children’s books, spread out in the yard. I walked over to discover a small stack of Rand McNally’s Junior Elf books and Western Publishing Companies: Little Golden Books. “Hey, those were from my time!” I picked up: “Tuffy the Tugboat,” “The Happy Man and his Dump Truck,” and “Policeman Dan.” The original pricing of 15 cents was stamped on the cover, they were in pretty good condition, and they were from my childhood, so I thought: “Why not, I’ll take these.” I also found a little Scholastic Book Services paperback entitled: “It was a Short Summer, Charlie Brown” by Charles M. Schultz. When I flipped through the pages I saw the title page was stamped in big bold print: A GIFT FROM RIF. Oh-my-gosh!! I had forgotten about RIF. I had not heard about that program in about 45

102

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

years! My mind went back in time and I could hear the old TV commercial announce: “To a child that doesn’t read the world is a closed book, RIF… Reading is Fundamental.” Wow, I knew then the little boy’s name, Mark Alan Longway and the address 7801 Gomez Avenue, Tampa, Florida that was scribbled inside all the books belonged to the little who grew up in this house and was now a grown man of about my age. You see, back in 1966, a former teacher, Margaret McNamara. brought a bag of used books to four boys she tutored in reading in Washington, D.C. When she told the children they could each select a book to keep, their surprise and delight led her to discover that these children, and many of their classmates, had never owned any books. By the summer, McNamara had gathered a group of school volunteers, and on November 3, 1966, they launched the book distribution and reading motivation program they called Reading is Fundamental. From November 1966 through the early 1970s, RIF expanded from a pilot project to a program reaching public schools in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam. RIF is the oldest and largest children’s and family non-profit literacy organization in the United States and combines three essential element to foster children’s literacy: reading motivation, family/ community involvement, and the excitement of choosing free books to keep. Yes Sir, back when I was a little

girl, the RIF program was very heavily publicized on Television and Radio. I remember seeing RIF Bookmobiles (they looked like ice cream trucks to me) parked in front of our public library and Jackson Elementary and watching kids climb on board to pick out a paperback book to keep for their very own. Opening that RIF book also made me think of a term used when I was in school, “Latch-Key Child.” A LatchKey kid or Latch-Key child is one who returns from school to an empty home because their parent or parents are away at work. To this day, I still tell my mother I was a Latch-Key kid in the sixth grade. My Mother still argues the point that I was not left alone, because my sister, who was in the 8th grade at the time, was home with me for the two hours every day until our parents returned from work. She reminds me that on Tuesdays, I had choir practice, on Wednesdays, I had dance lessons, and on Thursdays, I had Girl Scouts, so I was not left alone! HaHa! I guess I just thought the term “Latch-Key kid” was cool! Back to the Estate Sale, we finished looking through the items and I made my purchase of $1.00 and took the four little books back to my car. I told myself that when I got home I was going to Google the little boy whose name was written inside the books, the little boy who especially favored “Policeman Dan.” I knew this because he had written his name, address, and phone number in the front and back of the book. I guess he wanted to make sure if he lost his little storybook that it would surely be returned. Well, I thought about that little “Policeman Dan” book several times during my day in Tampa. Once home again, I opened the storybook and dialed the telephone number little Mark had written so many times. Of course, that number had been disconnected. I then typed the name Mark Alan Longway in the search bar on my tablet. I just knew I would find

he and I were the same age, where he lived, and that somehow, his little “Policeman Dan” book was lost and I’d make sure his childhood prize possession would be safely returned! What I did find was that: Mark Alan Longway was indeed my age (we both were born in 1962), that Mark graduated from Hillsboro High School in 1980, was married with two daughters and a grandchild, that he joined the Hillsborough County Sheriff ’s office in 2004, had a reputation as a joyful, energetic deputy who treated the people he encountered on the job with respect, that he was born in Massachusetts, that ever since age 12, when a deputy visited his Tampa elementary school, Mark Longway knew he wanted to work in Law Enforcement, and that on September 21, 2010, Deputy Mark Alan Longway lost his life in an automobile accident in downtown Tampa, in the line of duty. Well, there it was! I just sat there for a minute shocked and full of sadness. I just had to return that little book. I got on the phone and called a friend who is a Plant City Police Officer and explained about my estate sale find and asked if he knew of a Mark Alan Longway. His reply: “Yes, I knew Mark very well! We went to school together, we were Hillsborough County Sheriff ’s Deputies together, and we were friends!” I offered the book to him and he said: “Yes!” He is going to return the little “Policeman Dan” book to the rightful owner, to someone who misses Officer Mark Alan Longway very, very much. “Thank You! Officer Mark Alan Longway for your service, and may you Rest in Peace. And to all Law Enforcement Officers, Firefighters, and Paramedics who put their lives on the line for us each and every day, Thank You and God Bless!”


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

103


104

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


E

Now Enrolling! NOW REGISTERING AGES 1-4 FOR SUMMER AND FALL

WANDA’S WORDS OF WISDOM

BY WANDA “LEWIS” ANDERSON

I

t’s strawberry season once again and I have just the tip to keep your strawberries fresh. When you buy your strawberries, prepare a mixture of one part vinegar to ten parts water in a large bowl. Place your strawberries in the mixture and let stand a few minutes, drain, rinse and refrigerate them. The vinegar kills the mold and bacteria on the surfaces of the strawberries. The strawberries will last a week or more without getting moldy or soft. This works great on raspberries as well. I purchased a few of those tall water bottles/containers. I use them for water, but you can also use them for juice or any other beverage. But they are hard to clean especially if you leave them in your car and the liquid dries up in the bottom. Well, I have just the trick using un-cooked rice. Simply pour some uncooked rice with a little water into the tall bottle/container, put the lid on and shake vigorously. The hard rice loosens up the

dried on substance and the water helps wash it away as you shake the bottle. This would work great on baby bottles too, to remove dried milk or baby formula in the bottom of the bottles. Be sure to wash afterwards and rinse well. If you like to paint but have a hard time getting your paint brushes clean and free of paint you will love this next tip. Soak your paint brushes in Murphy’s oil soap for 24 – 48 hours to dissolve the paint. Your paint brushes will be soft and like new. If you’ve ever dropped a glass on the floor you know how difficult it can be to get all those little slivers of glass up. After you sweep wet one side of a slice of bread and carefully wipe the floor with the damp side down. The bread will hold tough to spot glass slivers leaving your floor free of glass. Be sure and throw the bread away immediately after use. One topic I am very passionate about is cat adoptions. “Cats Everywhere” offers adoptions for kittens and adult cats. Give the gift of love to a homeless kitten or cat, call 813-391-1987 for an appointment. Until next time relax, enjoy and be thankful… FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

105


16FocusMayfaire9x4.875.pdf 1 2/10/2016 12:45:29 PM

C

M

Y

MY

Lake Morton, Lakeland

CY

PolkMuseumofArt.org/Mayfaire

CM

CMY

K

800 East Palmetto Street Lakeland, Florida 33801 863.688.7743

106

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

107


E

Members of the award-winning band, On The Avenue, seated L-R include Daniel Bowling, Aaron Forte, Stevie Jackson, Kenneth Evans, Lawrence Butler.

ON THE AVENUE

BY HEATHER DAVIS | PHOTO BY JULIAN AT EYE CANDID PHOTOGRAPHY

W

hen On The Avenue, or OTA for short, steps out onto the stage, one may not know what to expect. Once you’ve seem them perform, you will agree they are one of the most diverse and exciting bands to come out of Central Florida. On The Avenue was formed in October 2013 by guitarist/vocalist, Kenneth Evans, lead vocalist, Aaron Forte, and vocalist/rapper, Stevie

108

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Jackson. The addition of bassist Daniel Bowling and drummer Lawrence Butler completed the group. By January of 2014 the group’s debut album “Champion” was released. That same year the band won the 2014 Hard Rock Battle of the Bands for the Florida region and performed in the 2014 Van Warped Tour. Last year, On The Avenue was named the #Buzzband of the Year at

the 2015 Florida Music Festival. They also performed at SXSW Red Gorilla Music Festival in Austin, Texas and have shared the stage elsewhere with Cage the Elephant, Bear Hands, and Cisco Adler to name a few. What is the reason for On The Avenue’s success in such a short time? One giant factor is their attitude that shines forth with contagious energy, passion and joy for what they create and share together as a band. Each member brings to the table a certain musical style or element that, while it may be completely different from one another, when put together “works.” Not only does it work, it explodes with energy and life. The band’s motto is “Stay Humble, Hustle Hard/” Even with the amount of success On The Avenue has received in such a short time, their humble and thankful attitude is evident in everything they do. As a band, On The Avenue, is difficult to fit into a niche or one specific genre. When asked how to describe their music, the band responded: “if we had to describe ourselves, we would be an Alternative Pop/Rap Rock group.”

Guitarist, Kenneth Evens, described it best when he said, “I’ve always wanted to see what it would be like to take all my favorite music genres and mix them together, while tearing down borders and restrictions we set for ourselves. It just happens that we tried it… and oddly enough it worked better than we could’ve imagined.” “As a band, we have fun. We lay it all out on the stage, until there is nothing left. It is like one great dance party with good energy,” explained front man, Stevie Jackson. The relationship between On The Avenue members has grown from friendship to brotherhood and they now consider each other family. That feeling extends forth from the group to the fans, as together they make up #OTAFAM. This year, On The Avenue, has been invited to play at the Strawberry Festival. With a fan base building like wildfire, it would be well worth your time to see them perform at Plant City’s favorite annual event. To discover more about On The Avenue, visit their website at OTAband. com or their Facebook page at www. facebook.com/ontheavenueband.


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

109

*

*Claim your Free $300 Savings Book at the General Store

Enjoy this walking district of shops, restaurants and family-friendly amusements. Free vehicle shows, car cruises and live entertainment Wed - Sun. We also hosts a variety of Americana-themed and seasonal events. Shops open 10am - 11pm daily and Restaurants 11am - 11pm daily.


110

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

111


SENIORS OF THE MONTH

E

SAMANTHA SUN

JORDAN SHEARS

BY ABBY ALMON

T

he term “Strawberry Queen,” is more than just a title for Samantha Sun. Samantha is an exceptional student, and one always looking for ways in which she can help the community. With a GPA of 5.8, she is ranked 17th in her class. She is a member of Plant City’s National Honor Society, Interact Club, Youth Alive, Art Club, BOLD and the Science Club. Samantha has received many awards for her academic excellence as well, including the Florida Academic Scholars Award and the HOBY Award Scholarship. But Samantha does more than just rule the school. When Samantha isn’t in the classroom you will probably find her around Plant City offering her services to the community. She does all she can for those around her and so much more. In addition to her Relay for Life participation and NHS activism, Samantha tutors migrant children at the Bread of Life Mission and elementary school children through her role involvement in Raider Mentors. During the holidays, Samantha also helps wrap presents for children in need, volunteers at the Optimist Club tree sales lot. She has also taught tennis at Steppin’ Stone Farms for troubled girls. Samantha dedicates her time to helping those in need anywhere. In addition to three mission trips with First Baptist Church of Plant City, she also is a Vacation Bible School Leader and the Children’s Church Leader. She leads here as she gets to know everyone in Plant City with her Strawberry Queen and Calendar Girl duties. Samantha is an extremely hard worker and does all that she can do to accomplish her goals. This kind hearted young woman is an excellent choice to represent Plant City High School as the Senior of the Month.

FAVORITES:

Food: Chinese cuisine Book: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Artist: Melanie Martinez College: Harvard and Duke Hobby: Piano Places to hang around Plant City: The Corner Store

112

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

BY GRESHAM STEPHENS

J

ordan Shears, the son of Heather and John Turner, is a dedicated Plant City High School senior, student athlete and community member. Throughout his high school career, he has been involved in numerous sports and clubs, all while excelling academically. Jordan is currently dualenrolled at Hillsborough Community College and will graduate from PCHS with approximately 42 college credit hours. He has participated on the school’s swim and football teams and is currently a member of various clubs, such as Interact, Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the prestigious 1290 club for excellence on the SAT exam. When Jordan is not studying or participating in school events you can find him as an active member of his church, where he helps with children’s camps, VBS, and leading small groups. It is an honor to recognize Jordan as Plant City High School’s Senior of the Month.

FAVORITES: Quote: “For beautiful eyes, look for the good in other; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.” Audrey Hepburn

Subject: History Book: The Hobbit Sports Team: Green Bay Packers and FSU Hobbies: Music, Sports, Helping out with church Band/Artist: Switchfoot Song: There are so many good songs it’s hard to choose one

Movie: The Gladiator TV Show: The Office Restaurant: Red Lobster Food: Raspberry Cheesecake Hangout spot in PC: RaceTrac Quote: “Be somebody who makes everybody feel like a somebody.”


INFANT DIAGNOSED WITH FAILURE TO THRIVE HELPED WITH CHIROPRACTIC The December 17, 2015, issue of the Journal of Pediatric, Maternal & Family Health published a study documenting the case of an infant who was medically diagnosed with failure to thrive being helped with chiropractic. The authors of the study describe failure to thrive (FTT) as infants who cannot maintain growth or have inadequate growth. The condition is fairly common affecting approximately 3-10% of children attending care in a hospital setting and 5-10% of children attended to in a primary care setting. This may be due to disease, or not enough calories in the infant’s diet or even an infant that burns too many calories. The study reports that 80% of all cases have no known underlying medical conditions for the FTT. Because of the lack of clear medical treatment, the study

reports that many parents turn to alternatives such as chiropractic, in these situations. In this case, a 5-monthold infant girl with a medical diagnosis of “failure to thrive” was brought to the chiropractor. The infant girl was also suffering with inconsolable crying, chronic diarrhea, and was dangerously underweight. The infant’s mother reported that her daughter’s problems began at the age of two months when she was brought to the pediatrician for a stomach virus, oral thrush, and loose green stools. Medication was prescribed but was ineffective as the infant continued to suffer from green-colored diarrhea and weight loss for the next six weeks. The problem worsened with the medical recommendations. A chiropractic examination revealed the presence of

subluxations in the infant’s upper neck. Subluxations can cause interference to normal nerve function and have an effect on overall physiology. Chiropractic adjustments were begun to correct the subluxations and restore normal nerve function. After the the infant’s first chiropractic adjustment, her mother noted that her daughter slept several hours continuously, without waking up and crying. After the third adjustment, the child stopped the daily screaming, and her stools started to return to normal. After one week of care, the child had gained 2 oz. Each successive week, the child’s rate of weight gain continued to increase until the child had returned to a normal weight. A five year follow-up showed that the child was normal, in good heath, and properly developed for her age. In their conclusion, the authors wrote, “ This case report provides supporting evidence on the effectiveness of chiropractic care in infants with a failure to thrive.

Dr. Brenda Dukes • Chiropractic Physician 752-2524 • 2401 Walden Woods Drive, Plant City, FL 33566 www.dukeschiropractichealth.com

Dr. Dukes encourages you to write her with any questions concerning chiropractic care. FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

113


114

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

115


116

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


Featuring Daily Specials $4.75 Breakfast 2 Eggs, Choice of Bacon or Sausage,

Choice of Grits, Hash Browns or Home Fries Toast Hamburger w/French Fries

We’re not just Pizza! Come try our HAMBURGERS, CHICKEN, & STEAK, too! Daily Lunch & Dinner Specials. View or print our menu at abcpizza.com

$4.99

2016

NOMINATED FOR BEST BREAKFAST HAMBURGER & HOMETOWN COOKIN’

813.752.8946

Hours: Take Out Available Mon-Sat. 6 am- 2 pm Sun 7 am- 2 pm 113 W. Prosser Drive,

813-752-5146

114 North Alexander Street • Plant City, Fl. 33563 BRING THIS AD IN AND RECEIVE 15% OFF Cannot use this coupon with any in House Specials or Discounts!

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

117


118

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

119


LET US GIVE YOU THE

BERRY BEST QUOTE IN TOWN!

Please give us an opportunity for all your insurance needs Home, Auto and Commercial.

CALL NOW 813-707-1000 / WWW.ROLLYSONFEARNOW.COM OR EMAIL: RHETT@FEARNOWINS.COM

Culligan Water of Tampa 2703 Airport Road Plant City, FL 33563 Toll Free (888)440-4542 tampaculligan.com 120

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

121


122

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

123


D

A HINT OF GARLIC BY VICTORIA WATKINS SGRO

I

t’s finally strawberry season and I’m ready to take full advantage! Those beautiful red berries have been calling my name, and there’s nothing better to celebrate their arrival than the strawberry shortcake. This one is specially designed with your health in mind, but you’ll enjoy just as much of that classic shortcake flavor. Visit our blog at ahintofgarlic.com for more strawberry recipes all season long!

M AC KE NZ IE OF KE NZ IE PA CK RA LL

PH OT OG RA PH Y

Gluten-free Mtincai kes Strawberry Shor

Ingredients

For the cake: al free-range eggs • 4 organic or loc honey al loc raw p • 4 tbs conut flour co ic an • 5 tbsp org wder po g kin ba tsp 1/2 • t sal sea e fin • 1/8 tsp t pure vanilla extrac • 1/2 tsp organic the ng asi gre for t oil • Organic coconu muffin tin

Directions

ized desserts)

(makes 8 cupcake-s

am: For the whipped cre anic coconut milk, org fat l ful of • 1 can t igh ern refrigerated ov vanilla extract re pu ic an org tsp • 1 ar or organic organic coconut sug taste) (to powdered sugar g: For the berry toppin City strawberries nt Pla of d un po • 1 anic brown sugar org of s on • 2 tablespo

spaces oil, grease 8 of the little bit of coconut a mix d an wl, s bo ger te fin ara r sep a 0°F. Using you ney, and vanilla. In Preheat oven to 35 combined. Divide wl beat the eggs, ho til bo un ge t lar a bea d In . an t tin in your cupcake d the dry to the we until a d baking powder. Ad e for 15 minutes (or the coconut flour an cupcake tin and bak the in ts spo y. ed tel en prepar cool comple the mixture betwe on cooling rack to t clean). Set aside d sprinkle with the toothpick comes ou Place in a bowl an . the tops and slicing off “syrup”. g n tin ow ir cut the ore ng bef mi Rinse your berries fridge to begin for the in ce pla d an y cream lightl pare the whipped brown sugar. Toss nutes before you pre mi lk 10 mi e for r Th . eze top fre the g bowl in the the fridge and open Place a large mixin and place in coconut milk out of am cre the ke the t Ta . ou p wl) oo bo Sc (I prefer a glass and a thick cream. r beat the ted into thin water Using a hand-mixe should have separa ter for smoothies!) wa d begin an ut t on rac coc ext the illa eserve to int, add in your van your cold bowl. (R to form. At this po ll. Stop periodically in we x beg mi ks to pea g tin stiff bea , ar) am sug cre d cream until ed ere wd ipp po wh onut sugar (or sweetness. Store the sprinkling in the coc ar to your desired cream and add sug taste your whipped es ready to ser ve. Top your cooled cak in the fridge until e them a light stir. giv am. d cre an ed ge ipp frid wh the ut on berries from llop (or two!) of coc Remove your straw ry mixture and a do ber aw str the of with a big scoop YUM!!

124

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

M AC KE N ZI E OF RA PH Y RA LL PH OT OG KE N ZI E PA CK

Strawberry Shor Overnight Oattscake (Adapted from a rec ipe

Ingredients

by Brooke Mclay of

• 1 cup organic rol led oats • 1 cup organic ful l-fat canned cocon ut milk • 2 TBSP organic chia seeds • 2 TBSP organic agave or raw local honey • 2 tsp organic pu re vanilla extract

Directions

babble.com; ser ves

2)

• 3/4 cup diced org anic strawberries, div ided • 1/2 tsp cinnamo n • 2 pint-sized ma son jars

Optional: Tr y using

other fruits to mix

it up!

Mix all ingredients except the strawbe rries in a mixing bo diced strawberries wl. Add in ½ a cup and mix until well of the combined. Divide with the remaining into the 2 mason jar ¼ cup of strawberri s and top es. Screw on the lid overnight. Serve co s and place in the ld in the morning. fridge


Mon. - Sat. 7:00AM to 8:30 PM

Sunday 7:00AM to 8:00PM

(('Rea.\ 5ou-the("n lfome Cootin JJ EARLYliRDs

Weekdays 2:00PM to 5:00PM - $11.18 includes: Coffee, Tea, and Soda

Senior Discounts Available! excludes during EARLY BIRDS or other Promo Specials

1101 Goldfinch Dr., Plant City, FL 33563 (813) 754-5120 FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

125


» DINING GUIDE

FIND DEALS ONLINE AT MYFOCUSCOUPONS.COM

SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT

CHILI’S

C

hili’s has been spicing things up since 1975. There is something for everyone’s taste. From sizzling chicken or beef fajitas, fired grilled classic burgers to the new honey chipotle baby back ribs that are slow smoked over pecan wood so they’re “fall-off-the-bone” tender with a bold new honey-chipotle flavor that’s impossible to resist. Call in or come in, you’re always welcome at Chili’s.

3001 JAMES L REDMAN PARKWAY PLANT CITY, FL 33566 813-764-8548 • WWW.CHILIS.COM

OLDE TOWN PIZZERIA

I

f you love deep-dish pizza, Olde Town Pizzeria is the only place around to find it. The cheesy Chicago-style pizza is a popular item on the menu, as well as the award-winning Strawberry Walnut Salad and thin crust pizzas. In addition, they have an array of delicious pastas, salads and sandwiches to satisfy all taste buds. This family-owned and operated restaurant is a Plant City favorite for those who love high quality food and friendly service.

3011 JAMES L REDMAN PARKWAY PLANT CITY, FL 33566 (813) 752-5800 • WWW.OLDETOWNPIZZERIA.COM

PLANT CITY HOMETOWN BUFFET

P

lant City Hometown Buffet is a family owned and operated business started by Elaine Vo, a resident of Plant City for the last 24 years. They offer a wide variety of items spanning the five buffet bars, including seafood and steak. There is certainly something to fit every taste preference, especially if you’re looking for seafood with their catfish, stuffed crab, buttered shrimp and much, much, more.

1914 JAMES L REDMAN PARKWAY PLANT CITY, FL 33563 813-754-4488

TACO REY

W

hether you’re in the mood for soup & salad or the tastiest mexican food in town, Taco Rey Mexican Grill is the King! We are 100% authentic and here to serve you 7 days a week. Our food is freshly prepared for your viewing pleasure and with only the finest ingredients. We offer daily lunch specials and call to order service! Adults and kids will love our menu and Aguas Frescas De Sandia, traditional natural home made drinks.

1818 JAMES REDMAN PARKWAY PLANT CITY, FL 33563 813.754.2100

126

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


SPECIAL ADVERTISEMENT

FIND DEALS ONLINE AT MYFOCUSCOUPONS.COM

» DINING GUIDE

TASTE OF INDIA

T

he TASTE OF INDIA offers an exquisite fine dining experience while serving Authentic Indian Cuisine for the past 6 years in Brandon. Some of the most requested dishes include Butter Chicken, Tandoori Chicken, Masala Dosa, Garlic Shrimp, Goat Curry, and Whole Fried Snapper! FULL BAR! Entree prices start at $10.95 and the Lunch Buffet prices are $9.95 weekdays and $12.95 weekends. Military Discounts! Professional Catering Available. Serving Lunch Buffet Mon-Fri 11:30-2:30, Sat/Sun 12-3. Dinner Hours are Mon-Thurs 5-10pm, Sat 5-10:30pm and Sun. 5-9:30. Relax and enjoy the wonderful spices and scents of the Delicious and Delectable Indian cuisine!

902 E. BRANDON BLVD. BRANDON, FL. 33511 813-689-4040

WAYBACK BURGERS

W

ayback Burgers offers premium burgers, made from 100% beef, fresh, never frozen, made to order just the way you like it. Our delicious hand dipped milkshakes hit the spot every time you try one.

Every month, Wayback Burgers features a brand new “Burger of the Month” and “Milkshake of the Month”. And burgers are only the beginning; House-made potato chips, all beef hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, turkey burgers, specialty burgers and fresh salads are available. We also feature local brewed beer from Two Henrys Brewing. Wayback, way better!

200 W. ALEXANDER STREET PLANT CITY, FL 33563

20165

NOMINATED FOR BEST FRIED CHICKEN

“THE TASTE IS RIGHT IN EVERY BITE”

CHICKEN & SEAFOOD

SERVING PLANT CITY FOR 47 YEARS

813-752-9200 CALL AHEAD FOR FAST TAKE-OUT At the corner of Thonotosassa & Alexander St FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

127


can’t miss

events ONGOING

• Mondays Weekly Plant City Daybreak Rotary Club 7 AM South Florida Baptist Hospital Community Room Contact: George Banning / 813-759-1638 • 1st & 3rd Mondays Monthly Improvement League of Plant City 7 PM Historic Glover School Conference Room 5104 Horton Road Contact: William Thomas / 813-757-6760 • 2nd & 4th Mondays Monthly Plant City Commission Meeting 7:30 PM City Hall, 302 W. Reynolds St. • 2nd Monday Monthly Plant City Garden Club 10 AM (September through May) For location, contact Christy Linke 732- 322-8392 • Tuesdays Weekly Plant City Lions Club 12 Noon The Catering Company & Café 115 E. Reynolds St. Contact: Tony Lee / 813-752-7202 • 1st Tuesdays Monthly Economic Development Corporation Meeting 2 PM PC Chamber unless otherwise announced 106 N. Evers St. • 1st Tuesdays Monthly (Sept-May) Arts Council of Plant City 7 PM Chamber of Commerce Public Meeting Room 106 N. Evers St. Contact: Dodie White / 813-752-5156 • 2nd Tuesdays Monthly GFWC Woman’s Club of Plant City 10:30 AM GFWC Clubhouse 1110 N. Wheeler St. • 2nd & 4th Tuesdays Monthly American Legion – Norman McLeod Post #26 6 PM 2207 West Baker Street Contact: 813-752-8608 Contact: Nancy Miller / 813-754-2544 • Wednesdays Weekly Plant City Kiwanis Club 12 Noon Contact: David Wolf / 813-717-9300 • Thursdays Weekly Toastmasters 7:30 AM @ PC Chamber 106 N. Evers St. • Thursdays Weekly PC Local Harvest Farmers Market 4 – 8 PM McCall Park 100 N. Collns St. Historic Downtown Plant City 813-531-1811 www.pclocalharvestfarmersmarket.com • Fridays Weekly

128

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Christian Contemporary Music 6:33 – 8:13PM Krazy Kup 101 E. J Arden Mays Blvd. 813-752-1220

• Saturdays Weekly Acoustic Happy Hour 5:30 – 8:30 PM O’Brien’s Irish Pub 1701 S. Alexander St. 813-764-8818 • Saturdays Weekly Christian Contemporary Music 6:33 – 10:33PM Krazy Kup 101 E. J Arden Mays Blvd. 813-752-1220 • 1st and 3rd Thursdays Monthly Plant City Civitan Club 7 AM Buddy Freddy’s Restaurant 1101 Goldfinch Dr. Contact: Pat Pogue / 813-754-4680 • 2nd Thursdays Monthly GFWC Junior Woman’s Club of Plant City 7 PM GFWC Clubhouse 1110 N. Wheeler St. Contact: Lisa Rhodes / (813) 376-8294 • 2nd Thursdays Monthly Free Youth Fitness Orientation at YMCA 5:30 PM Wellness staff demonstrates exercise equipment & explains how to start on the road to great health. 1507 YMCA Place 813- 757-6677 • 3rd Saturdays Monthly Strawberry Classic Car Show New winter hours: 4-8 PM Contact: Peggy Wilson 814-754-3707 www.plantcity.org peggy@plantcity.org

FEBRUARY 15 MONDAY

President’s Day

17 WEDNESDAY • 57th Annual Outstanding Citizen of the Year Luncheon Hosted by Kiwanis Club Florida Strawberry Festival Expo Hall 2301 W. Oak Avenue $25 Buffet Lunch begins @11:30AM

18 THURSDAY • Greater PC Chamber – Business After Hours 5:15PM Hosted by Focus Magazine @Keel & Curley Winery 5210 W. Thonotosassa Road

20 SATURDAY • Daddy-Daughter Dance Prior Registration was required Dressy attire for girls/ coats-ties for dads Hosted by PC Recreation/Parks Dept. @ John R. Trinkle Center @HCC Campus

• Strawberry Classic Car Show 4-8 PM 106 N. Palmer Street, Downtown PC Contact: Peggy Wilson 814-754-3707 www.plantcity.org or peggy@plantcity.org

22 MONDAY • City Commission Meeting 7:30 PM City Hall, 302 W. Reynolds Street

23 TUESDAY • Free Youth Fitness Orientation at YMCA 5:30 PM Wellness staff demonstrates exercise equipment & explains how to start on the road to great health. 1507 YMCA Place 813-757-6677

25 THURSDAY • Toastmasters 7:30AM @ PC Chamber 106 N. Evers St. • PC Local Harvest Farmers Market 4-8PM McCall Park 100 N. Collins St. Historic Downtown Plant City 813-531-1911 www.pclocalharvestfarmersmarket.com

27 SATURDAY • Planes, Trains & Automobiles 10 AM – 3 PM Free admission; $5 Parking Displays & demonstrations of planes (incl. remote control), CSX train safety, “Touch a Truck” program, PC Fire & Police Depts. K-9 demos (11, 12:30 & 2), computer flight simulators; vendors Scouting badge opportunities; Kids Play Area Free plane rides for kids ages 8-17 (Registration closes at 1PM) Plant City Airport 3007 Airport Road 813-754-3707 (PC Chamber) for info

29 MONDAY

“Leap Year Day”

MARCH 3 THURSDAY – 13 SUNDAY • Florida Strawberry Festival Daily 10AM to 10PM

5 SATURDAY • Civitan’s Strawberry Festival Youth Parade 11AM – begins at State Farmer’s Market, Proceeds N. on Alexander St., then W. on Reynolds, past the FSF grounds • Plant City Bike Fest 2016 5-9PM Dirty Bomb Band Strong Man Contest Union Station Depot, 102 N. Palmer St. 813-754-3707 info@plantcity.org

8 TUESDAY • Economic Development Corporation Monthly Meeting 2PM PC Chamber unless otherwise announced 106 N. Evers St.

10 THURSDAY • Toastmasters 7:30 AM @ PC Chamber 106 N. Evers St. • PC Local Harvest Farmers Market 4 – 8 PM McCall Park 100 North Collins St. Historic Downtown Plant City 813-531-1811 www.pclocalharvestfarmersmarket.com

14 MONDAY • Plant City Commission Meeting 7:30 PM City Hall, 302 W. Reynolds St.


I

J

M

C

COME VISIT

DOWNTOWN PLANT CITY

H

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

129


FOCUS OBITUARIES Ruthie G. Ayscue, 96, of Plant City died January 28, 2016. A native of Culman, AL, she was the daughter of Adolphus Monroe W. Jr, and Bessie Viola Hightower Gilbreath. She was preceded in death by her parents; husbands, William Hartsfield and Virgil Ayscue; son, Jimmy Hartsfield; siblings, Pearlie Segers, Myrtie Simmons, Jesse, Amos, Willie, Julius and James Gilbreath; great granddaughter, Heather Marie Deal. Survivors include daughter, Patricia Hartsfield; step-children, Patricia Goff, Shirley Winn, Barbara Kicklighter, J.D. and James Ayscue; sister, Reval Herndon, 5 grandchildren, 6 great grandchildren, and 5 Great Great Grandchildren. Ms. Ruthie worked for the second Publix store with Charlie Jenkins, worked for Citrus World for over 20 years, and in her senior years did home healthcare, serving the elderly. She was also active for many years in clogging and square dancing. Funeral services were held at 3:00 p.m., Saturday, January 30, 2016 at Haught Funeral Home, 708 W Dr MLK Jr Blvd, Plant City. The family received friends for one hour prior to services at the funeral home. Ms. Ruthie was buried in Lake Wales Cemetery next to her father on Monday, February 1, 2016. Online condolences may be left for the family at haughtfuneralhome.com Clifford Brown, Jr, 65, of Plant City died January 24, 2016. A native of New Jersey, he was the husband of Melissa Swinson Brown, who survives.

130

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com

Also surviving are children, Cliffondra Brown, Natyra Blount, Cynthia Barnum, and Chanta Brown; sister, Kathy Fullwood; seven grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews. Clifford was preceded in death by his sister, Brenda Alcius. Clifford worked for Walmart in Plant City and attended Church on the Rock. He also had worked for Covan Moving Company. He loved to fish and go on cruises. A funeral service was held at 2 p.m., Monday, February 1, 2016, Haught Funeral Home, 708 W Dr MLK Jr, Plant City. The family received friends for one hour prior to services at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left for the family at haughtfuneralhome.com

Waneta I. Hedberg, 88, of Plant City died February 3, 2016. A native of Fort Dodge, IA, she was the daughter of Harry and Louise Fink Anderson. Surviving are husband of 64 years, William Hedberg; sons, Kirk (Cila) Hedberg, Craig (Dot) Hedberg; daughters, LeeAnn ( Jake) Jaquith, Barbara Hedberg; brother, Ken Anderson; 9 grandchildren. Waneta was a member of the Salvation Army Church and loved to read, watch TV, and sew. A memorial service was held 2pm, Saturday, February 6, 2016 at Salvation Army Church, 2620 Kathleen Rd, Lakeland 33810. Online condolences may be left for the family at haughtfuneralhome. com

Plant City native Walter “Rick” Brown Jr., age 55, of Plant City Florida passed away Monday, January 18th, 2016. Survivors for the son of Walter and Betty Boyett Brown include daughter, Amanda (Evan) Bair; sisters, Polly Brown Fox, Jennifer (Frank) Damron, and his beloved dog Baxter. Rick retired from the Hillsborough County Sheriff ’s Office and served in the U.S. Air Force. The family received friends Thursday, January 28th, 2016 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Haught Funeral Home Chapel, 708 W. Dr. M.L.K. Jr. Blvd. in Plant City. Funeral Services were held Friday, January 29th, 2016 at 11:00 am, with a visitation one hour prior to service at Clay Sink Baptist Church, 45242 Lacoochee Clay Sink Rd, Webster, Florida 33597. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.haughtfuneralhome.com.

Lorraine E. LeGrand, 82 of Plant City passed away on Sunday, January 17, 2016 at her home. Born in Manhattan, she owned homes in Flushing, Queens, Livingston, NJ, and Plant City, FL. She is survived by her husband of 66 years, George J. LeGrand; her children, George K., David, and Francesca LeGrand; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Lorraine was predeceased by her son, Richard L. LeGrand. She had a thriving career with PNC Bank, loved music and dancing, and was very active in her church and in the AARP. In Plant City, a public visitation was held from 3-4pm, Thursday, January 21, 2016 at Haught Funeral Home, 708 W Dr MLK Jr Blvd., and the funeral mass at 11am, Friday, January 22, 2016 at St Clement Catholic

Church, 1104 N Alexander Street.Online condolences may be left for Lorraine at haughtfuneralhome.com Martha Loette Mitchell, 61, of Plant City died January 28, 2016. A native of Plant City, she was the daughter of Richard, Sr., and Evelyn Thompson Coppedge. Martha was preceded in death by her husband Ronald Mitchell. She is survived by sons, Carl (Yolanda) Mitchell, Chad Sanchez; brother, Richard Coppedge Jr.; step-brothers, Jim and Rick Boston; five grandchildren. Martha was a manager with Sparky’s Convenience Stores. A graveside service was held at 10:30am, Friday, February 12, 2016, Memorial Park Cemetery, 2401 N Wheeler Street, Plant City. Online condolences may be left for the family at haughtfuneralhome.com

In Loving Memory


VALENTINE’S DAY WISHES Created by Calvin R. and Jackie Mathews

VALENTINE’S DAY WISHES COME JOIN THE FOCUS COMMUNITY

“LIKE” US ON FACEBOOK FACEBOOK.COM/ THEFOCUSMAGAZINE

ACROSS 1. Water barriers 5. Beauty’s costar in film 10. Beating organ 15. Vagrant 18. Guadalcanal heroes: abbr. 19. Nudge 20. John Jacob or Mary 21. Type of acct. 22. Valentine’s Day wish 26. Wide inlet 27. Jackson or Johnson 28. Passé 29. City in Texas 31. Surrounded by 33. Baby’s place 35. Large digits 36. Valentine’s Day wish 43. __ pro nobis 44. Took, but shouldn’t have 45. Hindu garbs 46. Cut 50. Leak 52. Actor Alejandro and his family 54. Nuisances 56. Best Comedy Emmy winner of 1979 57. Bread recipe verb 59. Peddles 61. __ throat 63. Soldiers, for short 64. Sad sound 66. Farmyard enclosure 67. Swiss waterway 68. Amerindian 69. Valentine’s Day wish 76. Gene carrier, for short 77. __ binge; overindulging 78. German river 79. Health resort 80. Trojans’ home, for short 81. Months: abbr. 84. Wading bird 86. Fat shunner, in nursery rhyme 90. Disease cause 92. Long weapon 94. Slangy reply 95. Of sound mind 96. Power source 98. Sigmas 100. Beef lover’s dinner 103. Whether’s alternative 104. Valentine’s Day wish

108. 110. 111. 112. 115. 118. 122. 123. 126. 127. 128. 129. 130. 131. 132. 133.

Braille-writing tools Bewildered Bondservant “I __ Happy Tune”; song from “The King and I” Monica of the courts Percussion instrument Site of the radius Valentine’s Day wish Curved letter Gourmand Holiday sounds Mr. Slaughter Pinprick cries Entanglement Fem. titles Reagan and son

16. 17. 23. 24. 25. 30. 32. 34. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 47. 48. 49. 51. 53. 55. 58. 60. 62. 65. 69. 70. 71. 72. 73.

DOWN 1. __ mater; brain membrane 2. “...shall conceive and bear __...” (Luke 1:31) 3. Thirty-five hundred 4. Stout-bodied beetle 5. Positioned midway 6. Yale student 7. Passing marks 8. Scotch mixer 9. Slight spasm 10. Disadvantage 11. Residents’ suffix 12. Razor blade name 13. Space 14. School skipper 15. Numbers’ location 1

2

3

4

5

18

6

8

9

10

11

23

25

33 39

41

57

58 64 69

59 65

70 77

80

81 91

96

61

83

73

98

79

114

87 95

100

101

106

113 123

86

94 102

103 107

110

112

89

75

85

99

105

88

63 68

74

84 93

49

56 62

78

109

47

67 72

82

97

108

55

66

92

104

46

60

48

26

42

54

71

76

90

53

17

35

45 52

16

30

34

40

44 51

15

29

32

38

50

14

21

28

37

13

24

31

43

12

83. One of the Obamas 85. “__ are the times that try men’s souls” (Paine) 87. Eastern queen 88. Shortly 89. Head of France 91. Parade sponsor 93. Give renewed confidence to 97. Valletta’s land 99. Male animal 101. Boil’s kin 102. African nation 105. Moon valleys 106. Permanent places 107. One who’s joined a club 108. Unpleasant wife 109. x 112. Home of Baylor University 113. Vigorous spirit 114. Shaver’s lotion 116. Gets an __ effort; has tried hard 117. Dele’s opposite 119. Sonny __ 120. Cosmetics brand 121. Not as much 124. Poet’s contraction 125. Initials for Aaron of baseball fame

20

27

122

7

Europe/Asia boundary Spread, for short Fictional captain’s family Cruel emperor & others Has a go at Tiny map in a large map Ways out Makes a hole Reserve Do a homemaker’s task Fixed look Swindle Sri Lanka, once Catalog Off the path Unclear Leaves Upward slope Adroitness Make a mess Department store name Airheads Shopaholic’s fling __ up; supports Skeletal parts First phase Mother-of-pearl Used a stun gun on Like an omelet Avila’s most famous resident Formal agreement Exhausts Floor coverings Trial

19

22

36

74. 75. 76. 82.

by Calvin R. & Jackie Mathews

111 115

116

124

117

118

119

120 121

125

126

127

128

129

130

131

132

133

© Puzzle Features Syndicate

FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

131

W A C O

S H R E W O N S E T

R U G S

I R O N

B O O K

A S O N

D U R A

M S M C M A N D R E A M G B O A S Z E E A D S O N E D A O C S R M E A M C A T Y L I S T M A E S

R I L L E S B O N E S B E T W I X T

E L A N

For Valentine’s Day Valentine’s Day Wishes E A S T H E A R T L B OW A S T O R I C D I N N E R O U D A T E D A M A D C R I B N O F C H O C O L A T O L E S A R I S R E Y S P E S T S S E L L S S T R E C O O P A A Z E N P R E T T Y R A E G E R S P T S E G R E T P E A R Y E A H E S S E S S T E A D T H A T S A Y S B A S E A E S A S E L E S C F O U R O F T H E T E R N O E L S A R E S R T A S

L E S S

A V O N

T E T E

B U I R T B A R I L L I N E S E S S E V E T A X P G I R U T O S E S P A S P R A S A N N O I N

K E N Y A

M E M B E R

B O N O

R I S E M A Y O


132

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


FOCUS MAGA ZINE PL ANT CIT Y FEBRUARY 2016

133


134

FEBRUARY 2016 focusplantcity.com


Stay To the ER You Trust

The ER You’ve Always Depended On No matter how serious your emergency, you want an ER you can trust. From minor injuries like broken bones, cuts or scrapes to more serious issues such as heart attacks or stroke, the Redman Emergency Center at South Florida Baptist Hospital delivers health care for adults and children. Also, because our Emergency Center is attached to a hospital, we can take patients into surgery or provide additional medical care right away if needed. For all of life’s minor and major emergencies, choose the Redman Emergency Center at South Florida Baptist Hospital.

Watch Dr. Brooke Shepard talk about the quality care at South Florida Baptist Hospital ER: PlantCityEmergency.org

BC1508006-1115


RussellsWesternWear.com TAMPA • WESLEY CHAPEL • BRANDON LAKELAND • OCALA • BRADENTON

10 OFF

$

PURCHASES OF

100 Or More

$

Expires 4-30-16 • In Store Only • Not Valid On Sale Items Limit 1 Per Person Per Day

FOCUS Plant City 15-02  

FOCUS Magazine Plant City Edition Issue 15-02 February 2016

FOCUS Plant City 15-02  

FOCUS Magazine Plant City Edition Issue 15-02 February 2016

Advertisement