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Crowd gives Bilirakis an earful By B.C. Manion firstname.lastname@example.org
A crowd — that sometimes became raucous — turned out to a listening session held by U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis on the issue of health care reform. Bilirakis billed the session as an opportunity to receive feedback and ideas from constituents on the future direction of the nation’s health care system, including the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act. People filled every seat of the Pasco County Commission’s chambers at the West Pasco Government Center in New Port
Many people brought signs to help communicate their views on the health care issue.
Richey during the Feb. 11 session. They stood in the back of the chamber, and along both walls, and the overflow spilled into government center’s lobby and down a hallway corridor. The crowd was made up of men and women, of all ages and ethnicities. Some came in wheelchairs. Some used walkers or canes. Some carried signs proclaiming such messages such as:“Repair, not repeal.”“The ACA is pro life” and “Health Care is a Human Right.” Television reports on the event aired on local and national networks, and excerpts of See BILIRAKIS, page 11A
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Managing challenges faced by teens By Kevin Weiss email@example.com
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From social media to social pressures, the challenges of a teen are unlikely to go away anytime soon. The stresses aren’t going away for parents, either. To help navigate those issues, the Steinbrenner High Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) hosted its fifth annual “World of a Teen” program on Feb. 7, inside the school’s auditorium. An estimated crowd of more than 250 people attended, according to Laura Lopresti, vice president of programs for Steinbrenner High PTSA. Those attending came from numerous areas public high schools, middle schools, as well as a public elementary, a private school and a public charter school. The award-winning program featured a panel of eight experts, who discussed topics ranging from drug usage and social media habits, to picking the right college. During the 90-minute event, parents and guardians filled out questions on notecards, which then were read anonymously to the panel. The answers were forthright, and panelists had plenty of advice. “I think that a lot of people left here with a lot of questions answered — parents and children— and I think it gave them a lot of content to talk about at home,” said Edgar Guzman, a Tampa-based attorney, one of the panelists. Drug usage, especially marijuana, was a frequently broached topic. The panelists’ message to the audience: Stay away. Lynn Posyton, community relations specialist for Drug-Free World, said she’s noticed the substance being abused “more and more.” It’s also becoming more hazardous, she said. Posyton noted the levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) have increased over the past several decades. That’s the chemical that’s responsible for most of marijuana’s psychological effects. “It’s not the weed of the ’60s, ’70s or ’80s,” she said.“THC in 1981 was 2 percent. Now, it’s 17 percent.” That sharp level, she said, affects individuals differently. “It’s getting crazier and crazier, and harder for a child to understand what’s right and what’s wrong in terms of drugs,” Posyton said.“The most important thing is education of what drugs are. If you’re going to do something, you should find out about it before you’re going to do it. She added: “Don’t listen to the people that say it’s not affecting them; do you look inside and see what’s happening to your liver?” See TEENS, page 11A
Members of the Helping Hands Club pose near the lake behind Heather Shisler’s home. Back row: Caileigh Brown, Kaylee Roy, Gavin Brown and Ella Neuffer. Front row: Isabella Steady and Alexis Hopper.
These kids want to help out By B.C. Manion firstname.lastname@example.org
None of these kids are old enough to go out and get a job. They also have trouble finding places where they can volunteer. So, they formed the “Helping Hands Club” to do something about that. Twelve-year-old Caileigh Brown, a sixthgrader at Rushe Middle School, came up with the idea. Other members of the club are 11-yearold Isabella Steady, a sixth-grader at Rushe; 11-year-old Alexis Hopper, a sixth-grader at Rushe; 13-year-old Kaylee Roy, an eighthgrader at Rushe; 10-year-old Ella Neuffer, a fifth-grader at Oakstead Elementary; and, 9year-old Gavin Brown, Caileigh’s little brother, a fourth-grader at Oakstead. The group formed shortly before the holidays. The club meets on weekends at Heather Shisler’s home in Land O’ Lakes. Shisler is Gavin and Caileigh’s mom. The meetings generally last about 90 minutes. Early on, the kids focused on figuring out things they’d like to do. So far, they helped at Sunrise of Pasco Inc., a domestic violence shelter, and at Zaksee’s Bird Sanctuary. They sorted out a storage closet at the domestic violence shelter, and they helped do some cleaning and planted seeds at the bird sanctuary. Club members said they’ve tried to get
involved before, but have had trouble gaining momentum. “In fourth and fifth grade, we would try to make these volunteer groups to help people. None of them were ever successful,” Steady said. “A lot of the things that we actually wanted to do, we’re too young. You have to be 16,” Brown said. Neuffer said she enjoys being in the club.“I love helping out people,” she said. Brown’s little brother, Gavin, is first to admit he was drafted into the club. But, he said, he enjoys being part of it. Shisler lets the club meet at her house, helps the kids with setting up volunteer opportunities and transporting them. The group’s goal is to complete at least one — but hopefully more — volunteer activities each month. The opportunities need to be within the general area, and need to be tasks that can be completed within a day or less. The idea is to make a difference, the kids say. “It’s a good thing to do in your free time, instead of watching TV,” Roy said. The kids know there are a number of chores they can perform. In some cases, they may be able to do chores for pay, such as babysitting or dog walking, in which case the money they earn would go for a charitable cause, they said. Glenda Steady, who is Isabella’s mom, is See KIDS, page 11A
B INSIDE, PAGE 1B
Truflight expansion will add 100 jobs By Kathy Steele email@example.com
TRU Simulation + Training makes flying as real as it gets for pilots getting a virtual experience of soaring into the skies. The company manufactures flight simulators, and provides the commercial and military markets with pilot training.The subsidiary of Textron Inc., also provides FAA-certified Part 142 OEM-supported pilot training. TRU Simulation + Training celebrated the opening of a $30 million expansion of its Pilot Training Center in Lutz on Feb. 8.The facility opened nearly two years ago in a 15,000square- foot facility at 1827 Northpointe
Parkway, off State Road 54 at Suncoast Parkway. The expansion is expected to add 100 jobs. “This more than doubles the capacity of this facility,” said David Smith, vice president of TRU training centers. The newest flight simulator resembles a large white capsule perched atop black stilts. The simulators can weigh between 25,000 to 40,000 pounds each, and cost $6 million to $10 million to build. Another three simulators can fit into the expanded space. See TRUFLIGHT, page 11A
COURTESY OF TRU SIMULATION + TRAINING
TRU Simulation + Training manufactures full flight simulators and provides pilot training on-site. The simulators weigh between 25,000 and 40,000 pounds.
Her career touched many lives By B.C. Manion
Officially, Betsy Crisp’s last day of work was Feb. 3. But, based on her track record, it seems unlikely that the Land O’ Lakes woman will merely kick back and relax. Crisp retired after 29 years as the food and consumer sciences extension agent for the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences – Pasco Cooperative Extension. She is the woman who crisscrossed Pasco County preaching the gospel of good nutrition. She helped people to navigate through bureaucratic systems. She used elbow grease when a job needed to be done. Crisp helped nurses learn how to balance the demands of their work and daily home life. She taught classes on cooking with herbs and spices. She provided pointers for stretching a food dollar. She helped launch Pasco County’s first residential recycling program, and was on the ground floor 20 years ago establishing the Suncoast Harvest Food Bank, which is now part of Feeding Tampa Bay. Over the years, Crisp’s work drew attention. She was named the southern region’s Continued Excellence Award winner in 2013 for her many accomplishments on the job. The licensed dietitian was honored for the nearly 150 programs she presented each year in the areas of food, nutrition, health and safety.
Betsy Crisp and her friends, colleagues and family members celebrated her retirement with a buffet of finger foods and a beautifully decorated cake. The celebration was at the Land O’ Lakes Community Center, on Land O’ Lakes Boulevard.
Colleagues, friends and family members dropped by to celebrate with Betsy Crisp, as she leaves a career spanning nearly 30 years as food and consumer sciences extension agent for Pasco Cooperative Extension. Crisp, center, laughs with her friends, as her brother, K.C. Nayfield (right), listens.
Her Family Nutrition Program also secured grant funding to support several program assistants and many volunteers, helping more than 136,000 people improve their eating habits. That award was among numerous honors she picked up over the years. She deserved the recognition because her work got results, said friends and colleagues who attended her retirement
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reception at the Land O’ Lakes Community Center on Land O’ Lakes Boulevard. “Betsy has always gone above and beyond. She set high standards for herself and carried a very full workload,” said Mary Chernesky, former director of the Hillsborough County Cooperative Extension Office. A proposal Crisp co-wrote in 2007 for the USDA SnapEd Family Nutrition Program received funding for $160,000 a year, and the funding has since escalated to almost $400,000 a year, said Chernesky, who is now retired. “Betsy has helped people, counseled them, shared her knowledge, made a difference in people’s lives in the county and state,” Chernesky added. Crisp paid attention to what her peers were doing, and when she recognized a program of excellence, she nominated it for an award. “Many extension agents across the state have received recognition and awards, over the years … because when Betsy found programs that were good enough to be considered for nomination, she did it. Sometimes we didn’t even know it had been sent in,” Chernesky said. Kurt Conover, who spoke at Crisp’s party, said he met Betsy about 30 years ago. That’s when Crisp suggested that Land O’ Lakes get involved in the Coastal and Waterway Cleanup, Conover said.
He said Crisp told him: “Land O’ Lakes should get involved in that.We’ve got lots of lakes here.” So, the pair became co-captains, and they organized the largest volunteer effort of any site in Pasco County, Conover said. Conover said he handled the easy part: Getting donations of supplies and food for the cleanup crews. Crisp took care of the logistics. She made sure that cleanup teams weren’t duplicating efforts. Besides cleaning up the community, the annual effort has encouraged community involvement, Conover said. It has had a generational impact, too, he said. “There were children who came to this event that grew up to be adults, and they had their children there, participating,” Conover said. He also noted that Crisp’s husband, Paul, and the couple’s children, Megan and Michael, were always there to pitch in. Besides delivering at the professional level, Crisp is known for her personal touch, friends and colleagues said. She remembers birthdays. She asks about sick relatives. She celebrates her colleagues’ joys and helps them shoulder their sorrows. Crisp said her achievements came because of the people she was able to work with throughout her career. At her reception, she made it a point to go around the room calling out people by name and publicly thanking them for their help. She had a kind word for practically everyone — if not everyone — in the room. Crisp said she loved every minute of her career — except when she had to cut her staff because of budget reductions. “I cried,” she said. But, Crisp managed to keep her emotions in check at her retirement party. One colleague, however, could not. Her voice broke, as she bid farewell to Crisp — her trusted mentor and friend, someone she knows she will dearly miss.
Never far from thought Members of the GFWC LutzLand O’ Lakes Woman’s Club meet regularly at the Wesley Chapel warehouse of Support The Troops, to pack boxes of needed hygiene items and treats for troops serving abroad. The women recently delivered packages, along with club-donated funds for postage, to send off the gift boxes. From left: Dianne Finn, Lonna Vizzari, Marguerite Humet and Donna Losch. COURTESY OF PATRICIA SERIO
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February 15, 2017
Have you ever eaten a flower? By Nicole Pinson
Special to The Laker/Lutz News
Gardeners and foodies alike enjoy the culinary benefits of edible flowers. Edible flowers bring another element to the garden -- not only because they impart flavor and add interest to meals, but because they add beauty and color, too. By emphasizing plate presentation, you can savor flavors and eat with your eyes. Did you know flowers have specific flavors? Tastes that flowers can impart include spicy, sweet, nutty, floral and minty.They can taste like anise, peppers, onions or wintergreen.They can be strong, perfumed, bitter or herbal. Edible flowers elevate a dish. They have been used in cooking for centuries. Famous markets of the world, such as the Phool Mandi market in New Delhi, sell flowers and spices. You can plant edible flowers in any garden. They may be mixed in existing landscapes, planted in a vegetable or herb garden, or grown in containers, such as raised beds, flowerpots and window boxes. With any landscape, practice the nine Florida Friendly LandscapingTM principles
In addition to edible flowers, some flowers serve as important insectaries that provide nectar and pollen to pollinators such as honeybees.
COURTESY OF UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Hibiscus flowers are edible, but remove the pollen and reproductive parts. Use care when eating landscape plants because they may have recently been treated with pesticides.
Edible sunflower petals add interest and color to meals.
which include: right plant, right place; water efficiently; fertilize appropriately; mulch; attract wildlife; manage yard pests responsibly; recycle; reduce stormwater runoff; and, protect the waterfront. “Right plant, right place” is important for edible flowers, because you’ll want to find a sunny location for them to bloom. When possible, use micro-irrigation and harvested rainwater for watering plants.Add mulch to conserve moisture and reduce weeds.Then, harvest your edible flowers and add them to recipes. A note on foraging: use caution when looking around your yard for edible flowers and plants. Landscape plants with edible flowers, for instance, hibiscus and orange blossoms, may be treated with pesticides and herbicides. Use care when eating edible flowers, be sure to properly identify the plant, check for recent pesticide use and be sure to read the pesticide’s label. Favorite edible flowers include orange blossoms, nasturtium, rose petals, pansies, Johnny jump-ups, marigold, dianthus, daylily, pineapple guava, redbud, begonia, hibiscus, sunflower petals, anise hyssop, society garlic, petunia, mango, rose geranium, roselle, snapdragons, elderberry, pineapple sage, and native Florida violets. The flowers of common herbs are edible, too.
Redbud trees bloom in winter and spring months. The flowers taste sweet when you first eat them.
Try adding interesting flavors to your cooking by using the flowers of chives, basil, oregano, mint, tarragon, fennel, rosemary, borage, cilantro and dill. Don’t forget to try the blossoms of many vegetables. Zucchini, squash, okra, young beans, pea shoots, pumpkin, mustard, broccoli and radish are edible. Edible flowers have many culinary uses. Add them to salads, soups, drinks, ice cubes, sandwiches, tacos, pasta, bread and desserts. They’re pretty on picnic plates and side dishes, and can be used as garnishes. Some recipes include edible flowers in dog biscuits! Mix edible flowers and seeds (for example, black sesame seeds) to sprinkle color. Some parts of the flower — for instance, the sepals and stamens — may be bitter or
bland. Pollen also may be a problem for people with allergies. Remove the leaves and pollen parts, and eat only the flower. Grow edibles from seeds, and experiment with heirlooms and interesting varieties. Save seeds from plants like basil to grow new plants. In general, manage yard pests responsibly in your landscape. Scout often, look for signs of pests and problems, and learn what is normal in your garden. Use care with pesticides and employ least toxic methods first to control pests, which include insecticidal soaps and horticultural oils. In addition to culinary uses, some edible flowers provide wildlife benefits. For example,African blue basil is a pollinator magnet. Use it to plant an insectary or small garden that attracts our native pollinators. Grow your successful edible garden, and get more plants from seeds, cuttings and division. Share those plants with others, or transplant them in different parts of your garden. As you can see, edible flowers bring more than just color and beauty to your garden. For additional information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 744-5519, ext. 54145.. Nicole Pinson is the Urban Horticulture Agent in Hillsborough County.
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February 15, 2017
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Safety superhero academy
The Carrollwood Toastmasters will meet Feb. 15 and Feb. 22 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., at the Jimmie B. Keel Regional Library, 2902 W. Bearss Ave., in Tampa.The Feb. 22 meeting will include the club speech contest. For information, visit Carrollwood.toastmastersclubs.org.
Hillsborough County Fire Rescue will present “Safety Superhero Academy: Hot, Hot, Hot!” Feb. 21 at 3 p.m., at the New Tampa Regional Library, 10001 Cross Creek Blvd., for children ages 3 to 5 and their caregivers. Children can learn how to identify hot and cold objects, and when to call for backup from an adult. Parents can learn tips for keeping their home safe, and first aid for treating scalds and burns. For information, call (813) 273-3652, or visit HCPLC.org.
MOBILE ONE STOP CareerSource Mobile One will make a stop at the New River Library, 34043 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, Feb. 16 from 9:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Job seekers can search for work, create and print resumes, access local and statewide job listings, and get information about programs provided by CareerSource, for free. For information, call (813) 7886375.
TRAIN SHOW & SALE TEEN ADVISORY MEETING The New River Library, 34043 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, will host a Teen Advisory Board meeting Feb. 16 at 6 p.m., for grades six to 12.Teens can get volunteer hours for scholarships and school clubs by attending the meetings.TAB members help to plan and run teen library programs. For information, call (813) 788-6375.
COLORING FOR ADULTS The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will host “Color Us Creative” Feb. 17 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., for adults. Guests can bring their own coloring pencils, pages and supplies, or use what is provided. For information, call (813) 7800064.
sponsor a bowling league, which will meet every other Sunday at Royal Lanes, 1927 Brinson Road in Lutz. Upcoming meetings are Feb. 19 and March 5 at 6 p.m.The cost is $6 for three games, including shoe rental. For information, call Kol Ami’s office at (813) 962-6338.
Regal Railways will present a Toy Train, Collectible & Hobby Show/Sale Feb. 18 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Columbia Club 1, 5850 K of C Drive in Port Richey.Vendors will be on hand with various model trains, hobbies, collectibles, die cast cars, antiques and more.Admission is $5 for adults. Kids age 12 and younger are free. Early bird admission at 8 a.m., is $7. For information, call (727) 244-1341, or visit RegalRailways.com. The Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will offer a circus craft Feb. 18 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., for kindergarten through fifth grade.The craft will be carnival/circus themed. For information, call (813) 929-1214.
LUTZ SENIOR CENTER The Lutz Senior Center, 112 First Ave., N.W., in Lutz, will host these upcoming events: • Feb. 17 at 1 p.m.: Black Heritage Celebration • Feb. 24 at 12:30 p.m.: Monthly Birthday Celebration for members, with cake and ice cream For information, call (813) 264-3804.
MOVIE NIGHT The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will host a movie (rated PG-13) night Feb. 17 at 4:30 p.m. Parents should call for the movie title. For information, call (813) 780-0064.
AARP DRIVER CLASS The Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will offer the AARP Safe Driver Class Feb. 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.To register, call Eugene Pool at (813) 949-8585.
MOVIES AND POPCORN The Hugh Embry Library, 142154 Fourth St., in Dade City, will offer a senior movie and popcorn Feb. 17 from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., for adults.There also will be a family movie, popcorn and juice Feb. 18 at 2 p.m., for kids age 12 and younger with a parent or guardian. For information and movie titles, call (352) 567-3576.
HARVESTER CAR SHOW Harvester United Methodist Church, 2432 Collier Parkway in Land O’ Lakes, will host a car show fundraiser Feb. 18 from noon to 4 p.m. Registration is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. All makes, models and years can enter. Onsite registration is $10 per vehicle, and includes a meal ticket. Harvester Youth also will sell hamburgers and hot dogs.Trophies will be awarded at 4 p.m., for first, second and third place. Money raised will support outreach ministries of the church. For information, call Shawn Smith at (813) 9963450.
NEGRO SPIRITUALS The Tampa First Seventh-day Adventist Church, 822 W. Linebaugh Ave., in Tampa, will host “Come Here Jesus, If You Please:An Evening of Negro Spirituals” Feb. 18 at 6 p.m.The concert will celebrate Black History Month.Admission is free. For information, email email@example.com.
HONDURAS FUNDRAISER The Rotary Club of Wesley Chapel Noon will host a fundraiser Feb. 18 from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., at the Tampa Greyhound Track Poker Room, 8300 N. Nebraska Ave.The poker tournament is a $50 buy-in, with $20 re-buys.There also will be a cash bar.Three ticket options are available.A championship trophy will be awarded.The fundraiser will help Rotary volunteers going to Honduras to provide clean water, latrines and hygiene education to families in remote areas. For information, visit WCRotary.org.
MEN’S CONFERENCE Suncoast Catholic Ministries’ seventh annual Tampa Bay Men’s Conference will be Feb. 18 at St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Higgins Hall, in Tampa. Bishop Gregory Parkes will celebrate Mass.Tickets are $40 per person, or a father/son combo ticket at two for $40. Price includes lunch and parking. For tickets and information, visit SuncoastCatholicMinistries.com, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
FREE TAX PREP HELP Hillsborough County Extension will offer free tax preparation help to individuals and families whose adjusted gross income (AGI) is no more than $64,000.Appointments will be available Tuesdays and Thursdays through April 11, between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday appointments will be on Feb. 18, March 4 and March 18 between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. For information and to schedule an appointment, call Denise Kantak at (813) 744-5519, ext. 54141.
CHRISTIANITY EXPLORED Christianity Explored, a free seven-week course for teens and adults to explore Mark’s Gospel, will be hosted by Grace Community Church on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m., at Wesley Chapel Elementary School, 30423 Wells Road.The course starts on Feb. 19, with coffee and refreshments at 10:15 a.m.There also will be a fully staffed program for children from birth to fifth grade. For information, visit ExploreGrace.com.
KOL AMI BOWLING Congregation Kol Ami’s Men’s Club and Sisterhood, 3919 Moran Road in Tampa, will
PLANT PROPAGATION The New River Library, 34043 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, will offer “Propagation 103” Feb. 21 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Participants can learn new ways to cultivate plants. Bring a small box to carry freebies home.A master gardener will give the free presentation. For information, call (813) 788-6375.
COFFEE BEAN STRING ART The Land O’ Lakes Library Foundry, 2818 Collier Parkway, will host a class on making coffee bean string art Feb. 22 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., for ages 16 and older. Participants can make a decorative board with a mixture of coffee beans and string art.A proper dress code and signed liability waiver are required. For information and to register, call (813) 929-1214.
COOKBOOK BOOK CLUB
The Zephyrhills Lions Club, 5827 Dean Dairy Road in Zephyrhills, will host The Spinney Brothers, Canada’s International bluegrass band, Feb. 20.The group will perform songs from its current CD,“Living the Dream.”Tickets are available at the Lions Hall. For artist information, visit SpinneyBrothers.com. For ticket information, call (813) 788-1441.
The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will host a CookBook Book Club on vegetables Feb. 22 at 11:30 a.m.Those interested should visit the library to browse through selected cookbooks, choose a recipe for home, pick a review form to complete, bring your review and recipe samples (optional) to the meeting, and participate in a discussion and tastetesting.There will be a new cookbook each month. For information, call (813) 7800064.
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The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will offer “Art in the Afternoon” Feb. 21 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.This is a group of local artists open to all levels of art enthusiasts, from teens to seniors. Participants should bring supplies. For information, call (813) 780-0064.
The Pasco Mobile Vet Center and CareerSource Pasco-Hernando will be onsite at 6038 Gall Blvd., in Zephyrhills, Feb. 22 from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Services provided include counseling,VA enrollment, resources on VA benefits, suicide prevention referrals and more.The services are free to veterans and family members. For information, call AJ Jones at (727) 372-1854.
Outside the Box Gallery. For information, call (813) 780-8562.
THREE LITTLE CIRCUS PIGS The Carrollwood Cultural Center, 5437 Lowell Road in Tampa, will present “The Three Little Circus Pigs” Feb. 21 at 10:30 a.m., and Feb. 22 at 10:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m.The Crackling Brothers, Boarnum & Pigfeats Circus will retell the story of the big bad wolf.Admission is $7 for members, $8 for general admission, and $28 for a family four-pack. Children age 4 and younger are free, but a seat must be reserved. For information, call (813) 9228167.
TRAIL STUDY OPEN HOUSE The Pasco County Metropolitan Planning Organization will host an open-house style public information meeting on the Withlacoochee Trail Connector Planning Study Feb. 22 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at the City Administration building, 38020 Meridian Ave., in Dade City.Anyone interested can drop by and provide input, share information and ask questions. For information, visist PascoMPO.net.
MAKE A JOURNAL The Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will host a class on making a bullet journal Feb. 21 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., for ages nine and older.The journal will be a to-do list, a planner, a diary and more.A proper dress code and signed liability waiver are required. For information and to register, call (813) 9291214.
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The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will offer “Estate Planning 101” Feb. 21 at 6 p.m.Attorney Bret Galbraith, from Fresh Legal Perspective, will answer legal questions at this free workshop. For information, call (813) 780-0064.
The GFWC Lutz-Land O’ Lakes Woman’s Club will host its annual flea market on March 3 and March 4, and is accepting donations between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., at the Old Lutz School, 18819 U.S. 41. Donations must be clean and in working order. Large format TVs, appliances and sleeper sofas cannot be accepted. For information, call Patricia Serio at (813) 9484752.
KNITTING CLUB The Hugh Embry Library, 14215 Fourth St., in Dade City, will host a knitting club Feb. 21 at 12:30 p.m.The club will meet the first and third Tuesday of the month, for an hour. Participants should bring supplies and a bag lunch. For information, call (352) 567-3576.
ZEPHYRHILLS ART CLUB The Zephyrhills Art Club will meet Feb. 21 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Alice Hall, 38116 Fifth Ave.There will be a love-themed mini art show for members, and a watercolor demonstration by Anna Bailey, owner of
The New Jerusalem Church of God, 38442 Tuskeegee Ave., in Dade City, has provided a free food and clothing ministry since 1998. The ministry ‘feeds’ both the physical and spiritual needs of others.Those interested in the service should make an appointment by contacting Pastor May Ross at (352) 5679775 or fax (352) 567-2595.
BOOK DRIVE A book drive to support Goodwill’s BookWorks childhood literacy program will take place through March 15.The program helps put books into the hands of children from low-income families. Children’s books in good condition can be donated by attaching a note,“For BookWorks,” and dropping the books at any GoodwillSuncoast store or donation site. For locations, visit Goodwill-Suncoast.org.
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fresh seasonal vegetables, sauces and bases. Each bowl is made to order in the restaurant’s open kitchen. Dim-sum items, unique to the Wiregrass location, include Spi-Chi Shrimp/Vegetable and Cheese Fritters; Crab Rangoon; and, Lemongrass Pot Stickers.There also are salads and desserts. Wok Chi is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. For information, visit Wokchi.com, or call (813) 862-2315.
NEW RACE TRAC NEW WIREGRASS RESTAURANT Wok Chi opened at The Shops in Wiregrass, at 28152 Paseo Drive, on Feb. 6, according to a news release from Wiregrass. This is the third location for Floridabased Wok Chi, which offers fast, casual Asian stir-fry and fresh dim-sum. Additional restaurants are slated to open in New York City and elsewhere in Florida in 2017. The restaurant’s first franchise launched in Dubai in 2016. Wok Chi focuses on fresh, healthy foods promising “no batter, just what matters.” The 2,400-square-foot restaurant has wok-shaped light fixtures, red and white tile, and bamboo accents. Diners craft their own bowls of Asian stir-fry cuisine, from a selection of all-natural, hormone-free chicken, beef, pork and shrimp; organic tofu; and,
Newland Communities, developer of the master-planned community of Bexley, will add a Race Trac gas station and convenience store at the northeast corner of State Road 54 and Bexley Village Drive. Race Trac, which is based in Atlanta, currently has 35 stores in Tampa Bay, including eight in Pasco, with another five under development in the area. The Race Trac store in Bexley is expected to open in 2018. It will feature “made-to-order” food and beverages, enabling customers to personalize their sandwiches, pizzas, smoothies, milkshakes and espressos. There will be a Swirl World frozen treat station featuring ice cream, frozen yogurt, Italian ice options and an array of toppings. Customers also can enjoy free WiFi and a
covered outdoor seating area. For information, visit BexleyFlorida.com.
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TAKE 5 RIBBON CUTTINGS PLANNED
The North Tampa Chamber of Commerce will host two ribbon cuttings for Take 5 Oil Change. The first event will Feb. 23 at 4 p.m., at Take 5 Oil Change, 5309 Gunn Highway.The second event will be Feb. 24 at 11:30 a.m., at Take 5 Oil Change, 4319 Ehrlich Road. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact the chamber at (813) 563-0180 or send them an email at ContactNTCC@gmail.com.
SCHOOL JOB FAIR The Pasco County School District will host a Spring Instructional Job Fair on Feb. 23 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., at Wesley Chapel High School gymnasium, 30651 Wells Road. The district is seeking teachers and student services employees. Positions are available at the elementary, middle and high school levels for reading, math, science, emotional and behavioral disorders/autism spectrum disorder, school nurse and behavioral analyst. Applicants can have on-the-spot interviews. For information, visit PascoSchools.org and click the Job Fair banner, or contact
Join the ladies of Women-n-Charge on March 3 from 11:15 a.m. to 1:15 p.m., at Pebble Creek Country Club, 10550 Regents Park Drive in Tampa.The women share their talents and resources, and they build relationships with other women in business. No guest speaker is planned. Instead, there will be extra networking time. Each attendee also will have a minute to introduce herself and talk about her business. The cost is $15 for members and $18 for non-members. To register, visit Women-n-charge.com. For information, call (813) 600-9848, or email email@example.com.
BREAKFAST MEETING The East Pasco Networking Group will meet on March 14 at 7:30 a.m., at the Village Inn at 5214 Gall Blvd., in Zephyrhills. Guest speaker will be historian and author Madonna Jervis Wise, who will discuss “Women’s History Month:A Look at Women Who Rocked!” For information, contact Chairman Nils Lenz at (813) 782-9491 or Nilslenz@gmail.com, or Vice Chairwoman Vicky Jones at (813) 431-1149 or Donlvicl@yahoo.com.
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FREE NUTRITION SEMINAR Pure Health Studios, 2206 Knight Road in Land O’ Lakes, will offer a free nutrition seminar Feb. 18 at 12:30 p.m. To RSVP, please visit the website SamanthaTaylorSeminar.com.
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The Florida Association of School Nurses selected Pasco County Schools’ school nurse Margaret Polk as Florida’s 2017 School Nurse of the Year. Polk is the school nurse at Pasco High School and James Irvin Education Center. She has worked for Pasco County Schools since Margaret Polk 1991. The FASN Florida School Nurse of the Year award recognizes a Florida school nurse who has demonstrated excellence in both school nursing and leadership in school health. Specific criteria include quality of care, performance appraisal and ethics, educational standards, collegiality, collaboration, research, resource utilization, communication, program management and health education. Polk was chosen for her volunteer work coordinating student services teams and advocating for the migrant families in the Dade City community. She also has helped coordinate outreach services for medically needy students, and has volunteered her expertise on district, state and national committees. Polk was honored during the FASN annual conference in Orlando in January.
St. Joseph’s Hospital-North, 4211 Van Dyke Road in Lutz, will host birth center tours for expectant mothers. Admission is free, but registration is required. Upcoming tours will be Feb. 19 and Feb. 26 at 1 p.m. To register, call (813) 443-2046. For information, visit StJosephsTampa.com.
HEALTH DEPARTMENT RELOCATES The Florida Department of Health in Zephyrhills and Land O’ Lakes will relocate to Wesley Chapel, at 33845 State Road 54. Starting Feb. 15, these services will be available at the new location: family planning, immunizations, child health, adult health, immigration physicals,WIC nutrition services, Healthy Start services and more. To contact clinical offices, call (813) 7800740. To contact the WIC offices, call (727) 619-0129.
ATRIAL FIBRILLATION SEMINAR The Heart Institute at Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point will offer a free Tuesday Tutorial on “A-fib:Treatment for Atrial Fibrillation” Feb. 21, at Rao Musunuru MD Conference Center, 14100 Yosemite Drive in Hudson. The guest speaker will be Dr. Raul Jiminez, board-certified electrophysiologist. Registration and lunch begin at 11:30 a.m., followed by the tutorial at noon. Reservations are required. For information and to RSVP, call (727) 869-5498.
HEART HEALTH & EXERCISE Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel, 2600 Bruce B. Downs Blvd., will host a free seminar on heart health and exercise Feb. 21 from noon to 1:30 p.m., at the Health & Wellness Center classroom, second floor. Participants can learn how simple exercise and basic nutrition can help lower blood pressure and improve cholesterol profile. Reservations are required. For information, visit FHWesleyChapel.org/Events, or call (844) 504-9378.
SURGERY ALTERNATIVES The Heart Institute at Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point will present a wellness community lecture on “An Alternative to Surgery: Explore the Options” Feb. 21 at The Groves Golf and Country Club, 7924 Melogold Circle in Land O’ Lakes. Registration will begin at 5 p.m., and dinner will be served at 5:30 p.m. Reservations are required. For information, call (727) 869-5498, or toll free at (888) 741-5119, or visit RMCHealth.com.
HEALTH SERIES AT LIBRARY The Zephyrhills Public Library, 5347 Eighth St., will host these health lectures on Feb. 16: • Lunch & Learn Health Education: Liver Cancer Awareness, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.The guest speaker will be a community education specialist from Moffitt Cancer Center.A light lunch will be served. Reservations are required. • Healthy Eating & Living Health Series with Sandra Cole, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Participants can learn how to take control of over 90 percent of the factors determining health. Registration is required. For information and to register, call (813) 780-0064.
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The Area Agency on Aging of Pasco and Pinellas counties has a SHINE (Serving health insurance needs of elders) program to assist seniors and retirees with Medicare questions. SHINE is a Florida Department of Elder Affairs program through which volunteers provide free, unbiased one-on-one insurance counseling and information about Medicare options and prescription drug assistance for elders and their families and caregivers. Several locations in Pasco County offer meetings with a SHINE counselor:The Hap Clark building on U.S. 41 in Land O’ Lakes, the Land O’ Lakes Library and the New River Library. The New River Library, 34043 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, will host “Medicare 101” Feb. 16 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., to answer enrollment questions. The Land O’ Lakes Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, will present “SHINE Turning 65:
MAMMOGRAM PARTY The Medical Center of Trinity will host a “Screened & Fabulous Mammogram Party” Feb. 23 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., at its Women’s Imaging Center, Medical Arts Building, 9332 State Road 54, Suite 401, in Trinity. The center will set time aside for women throughout the community to get a screening mammogram. Both 2D and 3D digital screening mammography will be offered. No prescriptions are required. Insurance will be filed and self-pay rates are available. There also will be appetizers and refreshments. Appointments are required.To schedule, call (727) 834-4888, or email Penny.Stevens@hcahealthcare.com.
GRIEFSHARE MEETING Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church, 2348 Collier Parkway in Land O’ Lakes, will offer a GriefShare meeting Feb. 22 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. GriefShare is a weekly seminar and support group designed to help rebuild your life. For information, call (813) 949-4565.
LOOKING FOR BRIDGE VOLUNTEERS Jaime’s Adult Day Centers, 18950 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Lutz, is looking for volunteers to play with or teach the game of bridge to its senior members, preferably on Wednesdays and Fridays. If interested, contact Jaime Goddard at (813) 263-6735 or email@example.com.
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A Valentine’s Day for seniors and veterans Members of the GFWC Lutz-Land O’Lakes Woman’s Club recently worked on several craft projects simultaneously. Personalized Valentines, candy treats and colorful floral table decorations were handmade and delivered to the Lutz Senior Center, the James A. Haley Veterans Hospital in Tampa, and the Baldomero Lopez State Veterans’ Nursing Home in Land O’Lakes. This long-serving community service organization supports numerous local nonprofits, schools, libraries, and Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts. For more information, please visit their website at GFWCLutzLandoLakesW omansClub.org.
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Mittye P. Locke Elementary School in New Port Richey opened a Locke Closet and Resource Center Feb. 4, to provide no-cost clothing to families in need. The school staff collected 3,000 new clothing items through a partnership with New Threads of Hope in Wisconsin. Clothing was available in all sizes for men, women, boys and girls. Families received invitations and were asked to RSVP to shop for clothing. Also offered were community resources for counseling, youth services, jobs, food, shelter and more.
SHADY HILLS HOSTS FIRST TRACK MEET FIELD TRIP Shady Hills Elementary School hosted its first Track Meet Field Trip Feb. 10 at Crews Lake Middle School. The event was part of the after-school Shady Hills Harrier Running Club, which is in its second year. Since its formation, the club has amassed a roster of 110 students who run every Tuesday and Thursday. The students tally their accumulated miles to earn rewards and participation in Oak Hill Hospital’s Five Points of Life Kids Marathon, in April. Students also receive tips on stretching, nutrition and running techniques.
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Pine View Middle School’s inaugural Great Week of Service is Feb. 13 through Feb. 17, as part of the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme, to encourage giving back to the community, and to learn from and reflect on the experiences. As part of the week, students will host a car wash for first responders, and make tug toys and collect treats for animals at Pasco County Animal Services.The car wash is daily from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.The toy making will take place throughout the week in art classes. The students also will mentor at Cox Elementary School in Dade City on Feb. 16, and volunteer at Metropolitan Ministries in Holiday on Feb. 17. The school will collect these donations: clean, old towels and T-shirts (for tug toys), Pup-Peroni and/or Milk-Bone dog treats,
Tempations cat treats, carwash soap (not dish soap), sponges and scrub brushes. For information, call Pine View at (813) 794-4800.
PARENT INFORMATION NIGHTS San Antonio Elementary School will host three parent information nights to share information about the Cambridge Programme with east Pasco families. Each session begins at 6:30 p.m.: • Feb. 16, San Antonio Elementary, 32416 Darby Road in Dade City • Feb. 20, Centennial Elementary, 38501 Centennial Road in Dade City • Feb. 23, Wesley Chapel Elementary, 30243 Wells Road The Cambridge Programme will be offered in the 2017-2018 school year. The program is a comprehensive approach to teaching and learning with an international curriculum model that provides students with a rigorous educational experience. For information, visit PascoSchools.org, and click on the Schools link at the top.
HOME-SCHOOLING MINISTRY Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church, 2348 Collier Parkway in Land O’ Lakes, offers a Home-schooling Ministry, with weekly coop at the church, social events and more. For information, email Linda Holt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
LOCAL STUDENTS EARN DEGREES The following students have earned degrees from their respective schools: • Angel Ramos, of Wesley Chapel, Bachelor of Science in exercise science from Missouri Valley College • Colin Allan Pritchard, of Odessa, Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Clemson University, South Carolina • Alissa Belasco, of Lutz, Bachelor of Science in applied science from Youngstown State University, Ohio
NEED SPONSORS, AUCTION ITEMS Learning Gate Community School in Lutz will host its 13th annual Silent Auction Night on March 4 at the University Area Community Development Center.All the proceeds will benefit Learning Gate students. The school is looking for auction items, sponsors, raffles prizes or gift certificates.All items received will be highlighted to advertise the company. Pickup is available for any donations provided. Donations are tax deductible. For information, call Michele Northrup at (813) 948-4190, ext. 313, or visit LearningGate.org.
Proudly Welcoming Jenny Buck, MD, FACOG Dr. Buck earned her medical degree from Michigan State University. She was Board Certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology in 2009 and specializes in roboticassisted gynecological surgery. For the past 10 years, Dr. Buck practiced at Hackley Hospital - Mercy Health, near her hometown of Muskegon, Michigan.
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Chamber honors citizens of the month The Greater Dade City Chamber of Commerce has recognized these students as January Citizens of the Month: Susanna Rom, Academy at the Farm; Kayla Rosales, East Pasco Adventist Academy; Sidney Deese, Saint Anthony Catholic School; Aubrey Prescott, Centennial Elementary; Ethan Dixon, Lacoochee Elementary; Madalyn Grace Irvin, Pasco Elementary; Daniela Alvarez, Rodney B. Cox Elementary; Manuel Servindelamora, San Antonio Elementary; Yahir Torres, Centennial Middle; Teon Ifill, Pasco Middle; Brianna Moser, James Irvin Educaiotn Center; and, Paul Leon, Pasco High.
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BILIRAKIS, from page 1A speakers streamed on social media. The vast majority of speakers protested repealing and replacing the ACA. Speakers told Bilirakis that repealing the ACA will cause chaos. Some told Bilirakis that keeping the ACA, for them, or their loved ones, is truly a matter of life or death. The crowd jeered in reaction to comments by Bill Akins, secretary of the executive committee of the Republican Party of Pasco County, who said: “There is a provision in there (the ACA) that anyone over the age of 74 has to go before what is effectively a death panel.” As the crowd booed and shouted “no,” Akins insisted he was right.“The provision is in there.” As speakers took their turn at the microphone, some folks in the lobby occasionally chanted,“Medicare for all. Medicare for all.” In response, one man counter-chanted: “Make someone else pay. Make someone else pay.” One speaker told Bilirakis that the ACA had not really worked because it was too expensive, and another said he preferred keeping the government out of his back pocket. But, most of the speakers, including Ivana Sheppard, a member of Action Together Tampa Bay, want to see Obamacare improved — not repealed and replaced. “Your job as a congressman is to fix it,” Sheppard told Bilirakis. Insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies should not be involved in reform efforts, she added. “Take their seat from the table.The insurance companies, the pharmaceutical companies should not be at the table,” she said. “We are actively searching for (U.S. Sen.) Marco Rubio,” Sheppard added. Beverly Ledbetter, active in Pasco County Democratic politics, reminded Bilirakis: “Affordable health care is more than being
TRUFLIGHT, from page 1A In addition, the facility added classrooms and flight training devices, as well as a fitness room and lounge area. TRU Simulation has contracts with companies such as King Air, Boeing and Cessna. When Textron builds an aircraft, the purchase price includes flight training. Simulators are custom-built to meet each client’s needs. TRU Simulation recently delivered a Bell helicopter simulator to a training academy in Valencia, Spain. “We also have people who just bought a plane and want to join us,” said Chad Martin,
able to go to the doctor. It’s peace of mind. It’s the ability to know that you can be treated when you have an illness. “I taught at Pasco High School, and I would have students who would come in that would be very upset.When I talked to them, I found out that mom had Stage IV breast cancer, or dad had lung cancer … They had to balance between paying their mortgage or getting health care. “In East Pasco County, we have a 33 percent poverty level. Having access to affordable health care is important. We need a commitment that these people are not going to be left behind. We need a commitment that you’re going to listen and you’re going to act on our behalf. “We ask that you not make America sick again,” Ledbetter said. Other speakers told Bilirakis that repealing the ACA will cause people with pre-existing conditions to lose their access to health care.They said medicines will be too expensive, and they said without subsidies, people won’t be able to afford insurance. Two doctors told Bilirakis that the ACA has resulted in people getting medical treatment sooner, before their conditions worsened. In response to comments about Medicare, Bilirakis assured the crowd that Medicare will stay the same. “Medicare will not be affected. Medicare is the greatest program in the history of the United States, and we’re going to keep it,” Bilirakis said. He also said he knows that health care reforms are needed. “Premiums are very, very high.We have to fix that,” said. He said that increased competition between pharmaceutical companies will reduce prescription drug prices. As speakers continued to share their opinions and experiences, Bilirakis told them:“We are taking notes, and I know this is being recorded. So, I’m going to take all of these stories with me to Washington.”
TRU training center manager. Others are pilots who need to meet annual insurance requirements. With about 400 clients who come to the training center annually, Smith said the local economy also gets a boost. They stay in hotels, dine at restaurants and visit tourist attractions. In the future, Smith hopes to see more development within the Northpointe Village shopping and office complex where TRU Simulation is located. New restaurants are on the wish list, but Smith said,“We want anything that supports the feel of a small, walkable community that is self-contained.”
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TEENS, from page 1A Guzman, meanwhile, said he’s seen marijuana’s harsh effects from a legal standpoint. “It’s very dangerous,” he said. “It’s not worth experimenting; it’s really for nothing.” Deputy Bill Sanders, a school resource officer at Martinez Middle School, warned parents about vaporizers and e-cigarettes, where cannabis oil can be added and sometimes go unnoticed. “There’s a lot of sneaky stuff out there, and unfortunately a lot of our kids know how to get them,” Sanders said. He also has noticed that kids are trying things at younger ages. “Our kids are experimenting and doing things every year at a younger and younger age,” Sanders said.“Things we might’ve done when we were younger—but not as young — they are doing at a younger age.” The proliferation of smart devices and popular apps — Facebook,Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram — doesn’t help. Social media makes youth more vulnerable than ever, panelists agreed. Michelle Gonzalez, a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, said her office is seeing a rise in online sexual exploitation and cyber bullying amongst teens. Those matters are becoming tougher to monitor, as new apps and devices come online, she said. Teens ought to think twice before sending an inappropriate photo, Gonzalez advised. “It can get away from you,” she said. “Once you take a picture and send it, it’s out there.” To combat problems, Gonzalez said parents must better supervise their children’s app usage and Internet activity. That includes access to all passwords and encrypted information. “There should be no privacy—they’re not adults,” she said. Students, meanwhile, must be cautious with whom they’re interacting with online. “There’s nothing to monitor how old the
KIDS, from page 1A grateful for Shisler’s willingness to open her home for club meetings, to help set volunteer appointments and to transport the kids. She thinks the kids will benefit immensely.“They want to do something for others. I think it is awesome.” Justin Hopper, who is Alexis’s dad, is also glad his daughter is involved. He believes belonging to the club will help teach the kids about the satisfaction that comes from being of service to others.
kids are, and there’s nothing to monitor how old people are that they’re talking to,” Gonzalez explained.“Don’t give out personal details. “If you haven’t met them in real life, you don’t know who they’re talking to,” she said. Deputy Sanders’ rule of thumb for teens: Only converse online with somebody you’ve met face-to-face, and have had a daily conversation with for a school year’s length of time. “You really need to know who you’re talking to,” Sanders said.“Really know who you’re dealing with online.” On a softer note, post-secondary education was another point of discussion, during the event. Several questions were posed about the admissions process, along with the transition to higher learning. Bob LeVine, former chairman of the Harvard Schools Committee for the West Coast of Florida, said it’s an important to find an environment where each student can flourish. He pointed out students learn in different ways, from auditory and visual learning, to interactive learning. Finding available offerings at targeted institutions is paramount, LeVine said. “It’s not about getting into a school; it’s about succeeding when you get there,” he said. LeVine later instructed parents to stop worrying about what schools want, and focus instead on what “inspires and develops” children in the “best possible way.” Additionally, overstressing about grade point average or exclusively taking advanced courses can be counterproductive, he said. “The academics is important, but they will also weight things differently—sports, volunteering, family activities,” LeVine said. “Colleges want to see students undertake challenges, but not all the challenges.” Panelist agreed it’s essential for parents and teens to maintain open lines of communication. “Hiding, being quiet, or walking way isn’t the answer,” Guzman said.
“It will serve them well the rest of their lives,” he said. He also said their desire to help is sincere. “There’s a lot of stuff they’re willing to do,” he said.“There’s really no lack of heart in this group.” The kids hope their club will set a good example for other kids, and might inspire others to start their own clubs. Anyone who is interested in getting involved, or who needs the Helping Hands Club’s help should contact Shisler at email@example.com.
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Zephyrhills girls weightlifting shines at states By Kevin Weiss
Other state results from area weightlifters
The Zephyrhills High School girls weightlifting team can now lay claim as one of the top teams in the state. Buoyed by the performances of two upperclassmen and an underclassman, the Bulldogs sprung into a tie for seventh place (out of 35 schools) at the FHSAA Class 1A girls weightlifting finals at Belleview High School on Feb. 3. “I did not ever expect to be a top-10 team,” said Joe Rinaldo, in his ninth year at Zephyrhills.“That was surprising.” At the same token, the 2016-2017 team is one of the best he’s ever had. “I would take this team against any of those teams I’ve ever had. They were that good,” he said. Three girls did the heavy lifting for the Bulldogs: senior Sara First (101- pound class), junior Jessica Guadarrama (183) and sophomore Abby Shaffer (unlimited). In the 183-pound class, Guadarrama finished state runner-up with a 175-pound bench press and 175-pound clean-and-jerk for a 350-pound total.Those numbers were a sizable jump from her sophomore year at states, when she put together a 305-pound total (140-pound bench, 165-pound cleanand-jerk). She credits her year-round training. “I worked for what I got,” Guadarrama said, assuredly.“I had a lot of offseason time to practice.” Her mindset during the state finals helped, too. “When I went into the meet, I was focused on myself. I didn’t pay attention to the other (competitors) because that would mess my focus,” she explained.“I came here to do my own numbers and what I know I can do, and whatever place I can get with those numbers.” In the unlimited class, Shaffer placed fourth (185-205—390). Meantime, First placed sixth (120-110—230) in the 101pound class. “At first, you look at it, and it’s like nervewracking because it’s like the best in the state get there,” Shaffer said.“But once you get into it, you realize it’s just like a normal meet — just more schools and more on the line a little bit.” Rinaldo said he expected top-tier finishes for both Guadarrama and Shaffer.Yet, it was his senior—a first-time lifter— that surprised him the most. “She was in a tough spot going into it, and
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HOCKEY DAY IN TAMPA BAY FEB. 18 The Tampa Bay Lightning’s annual “Hockey Day in Tampa Bay” will take place Feb. 18 at 9 a.m., at Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive in Tampa. The morning starts with the Chase Street Lightning Tournament on Ford Thunder Alley. Also, for the first time ever on Hockey Day in Tampa Bay, the Lightning Alumni, featuring former captain Dave Andreychuk, will take on the Boston Bruins Alumni, featuring Ray Bourque. The day will conclude with the Lightning High School Hockey Championship game. Schedule of Events • 9 a.m.: Start of Chase Street Lightning Tournament • Noon: Gear sale doors open • 12:30 p.m.: Regular doors open • 1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.: Sled Hockey Game with Lightning alumni • 2:45 p.m. to 4 p.m.: LHSHL All-Star Game • 4 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Lightning Made Skills Competition • 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.: Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Boston Bruins Alumni Game • 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.: LHSHL Championship Game Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. All proceeds for the event will go to the Ritchie Foundation and Lightning Sled Hockey.
FHSAA EXECUTIVE FINALISTS NAMED The board of directors for the Florida High School Athletic Association has selected four candidates to interview for the open
BENCH PRESS-CLEAN-AND-JERK—TOTAL CLASS 1A 101 POUNDS Sara First (Zephyrhills High): sixth place; 120-110—230 139 POUNDS Eliahnis Lewis (Pasco High): 140-125—265 183 POUNDS Jessica Guadarrama (Zephyrhills High): second place; 175-175—350 UNLIMITED Abby Shaffer (Zephyrhills High); fourth place; 185-205—390 CLASS 2A 101 POUNDS Shelby Lewis (Sunlake High) 115-120—235 Zeena Zayed (Freedom High) third place; 130-135—265 139 POUNDS Caroline Winstead (Sunlake High); 140-0—140 154 POUNDS Tricia Clifton (Wiregrass Ranch High): 145-135—280
COURTESY OF JOSEPH RINALDO
The Zephyrhills girls weightlifting team placed seventh at the FHSAA Class 1A state finals. The team is only losing four seniors.
between her lifting and other people failing ahead of her, she was able to move up and get on the medal stand,” Rinaldo said, of First. “It was so amazing to see her journey from the start to the ending,” Guadarrama said.“I did not expect her to go to states; it was awesome.” The team’s core development began last summer, when Rinaldo signed up several lifters to compete in a USA Weightlifting club affiliated with Fortitude Fitness in Trinity. It went a long way toward improving lifting technique, especially for Guadarrama and Shaffer. “We made a lot of changes in the cleanand-jerk technique,” Rinaldo said.“Learning to snatch helped immensely with their cleans. ...It was hard at first for them, but once they picked it up and learned how to use it, it made their cleans that much better.” In essence, small changes led to big in-
Carrollwood Day School names varsity football coach Mark Jones, a former wide receiver for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, is Carrollwood Day School’s new varsity head football coach, according to a school announcement. Jones served as the team’s interim head coach during the 2016 season after the previous coach, Lane McLaughlin, was ousted before the season last August. Under Jones’ interim title, the Patriots finished 2-6. Jones has been with Carrollwood Day’s football program since 2014, when he became head coach of the middle school football team. In 2015, he led the team to its first undefeated season in team history. “I am extremely excited to have Mark Jones take over the CDS football program,” CDS athletic director Baker Mabry said, in a statement.“Coach Jones brings a lot of energy and passion to the position. He also understands and supports our mission of developing student athletes not only on the field, but in the classroom and in their personal lives,” Mabry added. In a statement, Jones said he is “honored and humbled” to be named the Patriots’ varsity coach. “I will lead by example, and I will stand firm in my core values and beliefs that are centered around faith, family and executive director position, replacing Dr. James “Roger” Dearing. He announced his retirement last June and will step down once a new hire is made. Dearing has served in the post for eight years. The interviews, which are open to the public, are scheduled for March 12, from 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m., at the Robert W. Hughes FHSAA Building in Gainesville. The finalists are: • Eddie Bonine – executive director for the Louisiana High School Athletic
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creases, he said. Guadarrama agreed. “The majority of weightlifting,” Guadarrama said,“is more of technique than how much muscle you have. It’s 10 percent physical, and the rest is mental...”” Meanwhile, excitement is already building for the 2017-2018 season. Credit the youth movement. “There’s a lot of good girls that didn’t make it to states that are still young that are coming back,” Rinaldo said.“I’m only losing four seniors.” Among those up-and-coming lifters are sophomore Savannah Sutton (110 pounds) and juniors Halee Karppe (129) and Chase Booker (139). “I’m pretty sure there’s going to be more (state qualifiers) next year,” Guadarrama said. “As a team, I would like to see us go higher, like fifth place.” “I think we could maybe get better,”
169 POUNDS Josie Blew (Freedom High): 140-180—320 Alyssa Kremer (Land O’ Lakes High): 165-140—305 Veronica Salazar (Land O’ Lakes High): 160-145—305 183 POUNDS Hailey Parks (Sunlake High): sixth place; 170-170—340 UNLIMITED Micaiah Long (Sunlake High): third place; 215-185—400
Shaffer said.“Some of the freshman this year — they have potential.” Some first-timers, too, could one day make a splash. “The popularity of our team—probably the past few weeks—has grown,” Rinaldo said. “I’ve got people coming up to me in the hallways saying,‘Hey, when do we start back up again? I’ve got girls that want to come out.’ I don’t know how good they are, but what we’re doing is speaking volumes right now.” School system. • Hershel Lyons – chancellor of Florida’s K-12 Public Schools since 2013. Lyons has 28 years of administrative experience in the Alachua County Public School system. • George Tomyn – retired former superintendent of Marion County Schools in Florida. Tomyn has 36 years of administrative experience in the Marion County Public School system.
SAINT LEO ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME COURTESY OF CARROLLWOOD DAY SCHOOL
Former Tampa Bay Buccaneer Mark Jones is Carrollwood Day School’s new varsity football coach.
relationships,” Jones said.“Our program will be built on the foundation of doing what is right to the best of one’s ability.” Jones was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the seventh round of the 2004 NFL Draft. He went on to play six seasons in the league, including stints with the Carolina Panthers, New York Giants, San Diego Chargers and Tennessee Titans. A Pennsylvania native, Jones played college football at University of Tennessee, starring as a wide receiver, defensive back, and returner. Spring football practices for high schools statewide begins April 24. Association. Bonine has 22 years of public school and state association administrative experience, including nine years as a state association executive director in Nevada and Louisiana. • Margaret “Peggy” Jones – educational consultant, Indian River Schools in Florida. Dr. Jones has 26 years of public school and state association experience, including five years as an FHSAA associate executive director and 21 years in administrative positions for the Indian River Public
Saint Leo University has announced it will induct eight new members into its Athletic Hall of Fame March 30 at the Marion Bowman Activities Center. Inductees for the Class of 2017 are: • Lauren Hudson Daniel ‘09, women’s soccer • Matt Harkins ‘95, men’s soccer • Erin Brunt Kinberger ‘07, softball • Michelle Nogueras ‘09, volleyball • Asmir Pervan ‘06, men’s soccer • Jordan Prais ‘10, men’s basketball • John Semeraro ‘05, men’s golf • Bob Sullivan, coach/administrator “The Saint Leo Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2017 recognizes some outstanding student-athletes from recent years who displayed their abilities on a national level, as well as some individuals who paved the way for that success through their commitment to Saint Leo and Erin Kinberger the student-athlete experience,” according to Saint Leo Athletic Director Francis X. Reidy.“I congratulate the members of this year’s class of inductees, and welcome them into the Saint Leo Athletic Hall of Fame.” Reservations for the induction dinner and ceremony are $35 each, and can be purchased from Erin Mykleby, assistant athletics director, at (352) 588-8223 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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The LAKER / Lutz NEWS INSIDE: Directories, Classifieds, Games & More
FEBRUARY 15, 2017
Ranch Days offers entertaining weekend By B.C. Manion email@example.com
anch Days offered a weekend of entertainment at the Little Everglades
Ranch. There were tethered hot air balloon rides, tours of the ranch, a high-wire act, a snake show, live music, a petting zoo and other ways to have fun. People could grab a bite to eat, and sit back and relax, or they could be more adventurous. They could watch a chainsaw artist turn a piece of wood into a work of art, they could learn about birds of prey, and they could stick around to see a hot air balloon glow. Over the years, people have visited the 2,100-acre ranch, owned by Bob and Sharon Blanchard, for all sorts of events, including Savage Races, Steeplechase Races, equine events, track meets and other activities. This was first time that tours were offered of the property, at 17951 Hamilton Road in Dade City.
Chainsaw sculptor Brian Ruth, from Pennsylvania, turns a stump of wood into an owl. He carves pine and cypress creations, while inside a protective cage, before an appreciative audience.
A Hot Air Balloon Ride Co. of Orlando (yellow/blue balloon) and American Balloons of Wesley Chapel (red/white/blue balloon) provided tethered balloon views from the Ranch Day site on the Little Everglades Ranch.
Kitty Tolson-Carol, also known as Miss Kitty, brought scores of birds of prey to educate and perform for audiences at the event. An American Barn Owl lands on her hand.
Helen (Flower) and Bob (the Old Hippie) Buyse are musicians of Michigan and Tampa Bay areas. They came in costume to see if they would like to play at Ranch Days next year. He said he was impressed with this first event and will try to be part of it next year.
Tino Wallenda performed on the high-wire for four shows during the weekend. He reported that most of his family that were in the Sarasota Circus accident last week are in good shape, but some are still hospitalized.
Wayne Waxing performs in the band Hymn for Her, at Ranch Days at Little Everglades Ranch.
PET of the WEEK
Duke, the paper carrier Duke is a 3-year- old Bernese Mountain dog. He looks forward to Tuesdays when the Lutz News is delivered. Duke loves running to get the paper and bringing it into the house. Duke’s proud owner is Don Burke of Lutz.
Send us a picture and information on your favorite pet! Write a short paragraph about why your pet is special along with a photo and mail to: Pet of the Week, c/o The Laker, P.O. Box 479, Lutz, FL 33548 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org, ATTN: Pet of the Week PLEASE NOTE: OWNERS NAME AND ADDRESS MUST BE INCLUDED FOR YOUR PET TO BE CONSIDERED FOR PUBLICATION.
Despite setbacks, Carmel is happy Carmel came to Animal Services last summer. She was initially a very sick little girl, having pneumonia and heartworm, and everyone has worked very hard to get her a fresh start to life. Carmel’s last injection for heartworm was done Jan. 5, and she will need a recheck heartworm test in 6 months. Despite her medical setbacks, Carmel is a happy and bright girl with a lot of love to give. If you already have a dog at home, a meet-and-greet is recommended. Come meet Carmel. The staff would be happy to discuss her medical records and possible medical needs in the future.
Springtime is in the air Cheryl Fernandez, of Lutz, snapped this colorful close-up at Treasure Island Beach in St. Petersburg.
SPAY & NEUTER CLINIC: Call for appointment: Subject to $3 medical, infectious & records fee. (Includes pre-anesthetic exam, anesthesia, pain & antibiotic pre-medication)
21515 VILLAGE LAKES SHOPPING CENTER
LAND O’LAKES (next to Beef O’ Brady’s in old Wal-Mart Plaza)
MONDAY-FRIDAY 8 AM - 6 PM SATURDAY 8 AM - 12 PM
Cat Neuter: Dog Neuter: up to 11 lbs 12 - 33 lbs 34 - 66 lbs 67 - 88 lbs 89 - 132 lbs
Cat Spay: Dog Spay: up to 11 lbs 12 - 22 lbs 23 - 44 lbs 45 - 66 lbs 67 - 88 lbs 89 - 132 lbs
$50 $55 $65 $80 $95
$50 $60 $65 $70 $80 $100 $120
PETS SHOULD BE HEALTHY & NOT PREGNANT. MUST BE CURRENT ON RABIES & DHPP/FVRCP VACCINES.
Monday-Friday 1 - 2 pm
Walk-Ins Welcome. Subject to $3 medical, infectious & records fee. Includes exam & economy vaccines. Consult is add’l $30 on request.
• Rabies 1 yr $15.00 • Feline Leukemia 2 yr $25.00 • Feline Distemper Combo 3 yr $30.00
• Rabies 3 yr $30.00 • Canine Distemper Combo 3 yr $30.00 • Bordetella/Kennel Cough $18.00
w w w. g e n t l e c a r e p e t h o s p i t a l . c o m Facebook.com/Gentlecare Pet Hospital
February 15, 2017
A perfect pair Kali (top) and Chloe are two young girls that came to the shelter together. They get along fantastically, and Chloe even helped Kali with her litter of kittens until they were ready to wean from their mommy. If you are looking to adopt in multiples, you will find a perfect pair in these two. Chloe is a funny girl who likes to greet new people. Kali has lovely flowing hair that you just can’t help be jealous of. If you are interested in meeting these two girls, come by the shelter.
If you would like to adopt either Carmel, Kali and/or Chloe, be sure to visit Pasco County Animal Services at 19640 Dogpatch Lane in Land O’ Lakes. The adoption center is open Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 6:30 p.m. All adoption fees include spay/neuter, microchip and vaccines. For more information, email email@example.com.
PET PAWS PETSMART ADOPTION EVENT The New Tampa PetSmart, 6248 Commerce Palms Blvd., will host a PetSmart Charities National Pet Adoption Weekend Feb. 18, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Feb. 19 from noon to 3 p.m. Cat Crusaders will be available both days with kittens and cats available for adoption. Fees will be $65 for one kitten, or $85 for two. Adult cats age 1 and older will be $35; and, a mother cat and kitten will be $50. All cats and kittens are tested for FIV/FeLV, current on vaccines, spayed/neutered and microchipped. On Sunday, Guardian Angel Dog Rescue will feature dogs up for adoption.
TAILS AT TWILIGHT “Tails at Twilight” will take place Feb. 25 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., as part of Gulfport’s Get Rescued event, the annual street festival and fundraiser on Beach Boulevard. After the pets have gone to bed, guests are invited to stay for an evening of live music and dancing, catered hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar and opportunity drawings. Proceeds from ticket sales, after expenses, will be donated to rescue groups participating in the evening event. Tickets for “Tails at Twilight” are $25 and available at the Gulfport Welcome Center,
PUT YOUR PET IN THE SP POTLIGHT!
3101 Beach Blvd., S. Advance tickets can be purchased online at VisitGulfportFlorida.com.
We are looking for photos and information on your favorite pet. Include in your short story your pet’s name, agee, and breed.
Don’t forget rg to include the owner’’ss name and city of residence!
SAVE THE DATE FOR DOGS’ DAY Dogs’ Day in Dade City will take place March 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., in Agnes Lamb Park. Vendor spaces are available for $20, or $10 for a nonprofit.The 12-foot-by-12-foot space must have a fire retardant tent. Call Lucy Avila at (352) 424-49672. For info., visit DogsDayInDadeCity.com.
Send photo and information to:
The LAKER/Lutz L NEW WS Email to: Mail to:
, SUBJEC CT:: Pet of the Week e , P.
PET PARADISE BREAKS GROUND Pet Paradise, an upscale pet boarding, day camp and grooming resort, has broken ground on its 28th location at 2270 Cypress Ridge Blvd., in Wesley Chapel. The state-of-the-art pet resort is scheduled to open in August. The new location will feature a 13,250square-foot building on 2.1 acres, and include both indoor/outdoor and indoor only dog suites, cat suites, public web cameras, multiple play areas, and a splash pool and unleashed play area with shade and mist for comfort. Professional grooming services and spa treatments also will be available for boarders and guests. For information, visit PetParadise.com.
The LAKER / Lutz NEWS
SEND IN YOUR PET SPOTLIGHT BY Y MARCH 22 AND RECEIVE 2 RENAISSANCE FESTTIV VA AL TICKETS!
WORD SEARCH & SUDOKU
MAIL IN YOUR GAME PAGE. WIN RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL TICKETS. Complete this games page, fill out this form, and send the whole page to us for your chance to win 2 FREE tickets to the Bay Area Renaissance Festival.
Mail to: Games Page, The LAKER / Lutz NEWS, P.O. Box 479, Lutz, FL 33548 Entries must be received by the Monday following publication date
4 WINNERS PER WEEK
Name:__________________________________________________________________ Address: ________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________ City: ___________________________________________________________________ Zip:____________________________________________________________________
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February 15, 2017
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February 15, 2017
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BE THE WIL W LD L CA ARD You side-step boring and shun the ho-hum. You want to set down roots som meplace special, and also be moved in the process. That’s why you dig the wild cards—because wild cards are what you make them. Wild cards win. With over 1 0 miles of trails winding through 1,2 0 0 acres of lively, preser ved open space—all the way to the Suncoast Trail— amid stylish, distinctive homes, Bexley is the place where your wildest dreams can become real.
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With our partner, North Newland Communities is the largest private developer of planneed mixed-use communities in the United States. Wi America Sekisui House, LLC, we believe it is our responsibility to create communities for people to live life in ways that matter most to them. www w..newlandcommunities.com | www w..nashcommunities.com NASH Bexley, LLC (“Fe e Owner”) is the owner and developer of the Bexley Communit y (“Communit y”). Cer tain homebuilder s unaf filiate d with the Fe e Owner or its relate d entities are building homes in the Communit y (“Builder(s)”). Fe e Owner has retaine d Newland Communities solely as the proper t y manager for the Communit y. Nor th A merica Sekisui House has an interest in one of the member s in Fe e Owner. Newland Communities and Nor th A merica Sekisui House are not co - developing, co -building or other wise responsible for any of the obligations or representations of any of the Builder s, and shall have no obligations to any buyer re garding a home purchase from a Builder. Additionally, Fe e Owner may se ek to qualif y its Communit y for of fering and sale of proper t y in states where prior out- of-state re gistration is re quire d before lots, parcels, or interests may be of fere d for sale or lease to residents of such states, which states may have spe cific disclosures that must be delivered to prospe ctive purchaser s before the exe cution of any instrument relate d to the sale or lease any real proper t y interest in the Communit y. Builder s have be en informe d of such state -mandate d re quirements and it is the obligation of such Builder s to comply with all land sale re gistration re gulations as mandate d by their contractual relationships with Fe e Owner and to distribute all applicable disclosures to prospe ctive purchaser s prior to or at exe cution of a contract of sale for real estate. Purchaser s of homes from any of the Builder s waive any claims against Newland Communities and /or Nor th A merica Sekisui House arising out of their purchase transaction. This is not intende d to be an of fer to sell or a solicitation of of fer s to buy real estate in the Bexley Communit y to residents of Conne cticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, New York, New Jer sey, and Ore gon, or in any other jurisdiction where prohibite d by law. © 2017 Bexley. A ll rights reser ve d. Bexley is a trademark of NASH Bexley, LLC, and may not be copie d, imitate d or use d, in whole or in par t, without prior writ ten permission. • EQUAL HOUSING OPPORTUNIT Y
February 15, 2017
Published on Feb 15, 2017
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