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Lutz downtown now on fast track By Michael Hinman firstname.lastname@example.org
Hillsborough County wants to bring parts of the Lutz community — especially land along U.S. 41 — into the 21st century with county water and sewer. But some vocal residents in the community are still giving the idea a big no. Officials want to make the Lutz Downtown Center Zoning District a reality,
which would not change the development pattern or density of parcels along U.S. 41, but instead create the infrastructure necessary that might help business grow more on the popular corridor connecting Pasco County with Tampa. “It’s the opportunity for parts of that area to receive water and sewer service,” said Yeneka Mills, a community planner for the Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission. “We know that people there
don’t want this to turn into a Dale Mabry (Highway), with traffic, and water and sewer.They think that this is going to be a lot of growth that will make roads congested.” What it would likely create instead are amenities like restaurants and coffee shops, the kind of businesses that can’t operate off septic tanks without a huge financial investSee DOWNTOWN, page 11A
New Tampa Players prepare Charlie Brown musical
By Michael Murillo email@example.com
One of the good things about performing the “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” musical is that the audience is familiar the characters. Everybody knows the “Peanuts” gang. Everybody, that is, except the actress who plays Lucy. FRED BELLET/PHOTOS “I’m very unfamiliar with Peanuts, unfortunately,” said The New Tampa Players sing during a non-dress rehearsal of ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown’ on stage Brooke Stinnett, who plays at the CrossPointe Church in Lutz. Cast members are, in front from left, Chelsea Orvis (Sally), John the unpopular character in Camacho (Linus), Robert L’Ecuyer (Schroeder), and Brooke Stinnett (Lucy). In the middle row are Abigail the New Tampa Players pro- Halvorsen (Freida) and Lance Rumowicz (Charlie Brown). Bottom row is Jarrett Koski (Snoopy). duction, which runs for two weekends beginning Oct. 10 at CrossPointe production of “The Sound of Music,” and he Church of the Nazarene, 919 Debuel Road thought she’d be a great fit for the Charlie If you go in Lutz.“I’ve seen the Christmas movie, and Brown musical. WHAT: ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie that’s it.” With just seven cast members, chemistry Brown’ from the New Tampa Players To be fair, the Lutz resident is just 21, so and camaraderie is important, Meekins said. WHEN: Oct. 10-11, Oct. 17-18 at 8 p.m., she was born well after the comic strip’s He feels like everyone fits in properly, with Oct. 12 and Oct. 19 at 2 p.m. heyday in the 1960s, when a series of televithe singing and acting talent necessary to WHERE: CrossPointe Church, 919 Debuel sion specials — and the original version of cover the challenges of each role. Road, Lutz the musical — began to add to its populari“You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” is COST: $15 for adults, $14 for senior citizens ty. Stinnett had to do some catching up for both a familiar and different challenge for and students the role, learning Lucy’s bossy attitude and Meekins. He performed in the play in high INFO: (813) 386-6687, or crabby behavior, she said. school, and has directed it several times. But NewTampaPlayers.org But she thinks that not knowing Lucy in those cases, it was the original 1967 vertoo well allows her to add something fresh sion. to the character, and the musical gives This play is based off the 1999 revival Stinnett an opportunity to show Lucy’s sen- joined the cast. version, and Meekins chose that one besitive side. “She’s a very talented actress with an cause it has more exciting songs with a According to director G. Frank Meekins, amazing voice,” he said.The two worked toSee CHARLIE, page 11A Stinnett brought a lot to the table when she gether in the New Tampa Players’
Baseball complex could bring sport’s biggest names By Michael Hinman firstname.lastname@example.org
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Has Gary Sheffield done something the late Hugh Culverhouse never could? The retired Major League Baseball star is excited about working with James Talton and Blue Marble Strategic in bringing a massive youth baseball complex to Wesley Chapel. But he is looking to bring in other big names too — especially those already associated with youth baseball — like former National Football League and professional baseball star Bo Jackson. The Culverhouse-owned Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted Jackson, the 1985 Heisman Trophy winner, in 1986. But after a trip on Culverhouse’s private jet forced him to forfeit the rest of his collegiate baseball career, Jackson vowed he would never play a single down for the Buccaneers, and refused to sign when the team drafted him. But 28 years later, Jackson could end up in the Tampa Bay area after all, as one of several sports stars participating in Blue Marble’s proposed 20-field complex at Wiregrass Ranch. “Bo Jackson wants to be involved,” Sheffield told business leaders at a recent economic development event of the Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce. “I just saw him two days ago, and they came down and met with us. All ex-athletes want to do is give back to kids.” Jackson, who runs his own baseball program in Chicago, was one of several names Sheffield mentioned as interested in participating in some way or another at the $70 million complex, that will be built in part using $11 million in Pasco County tourist tax money.Another one tied to youth sports is former Baltimore Orioles shortstop and third basemen Cal Ripken, whose youth
MICHAEL HINMAN/STAFF PHOTO
James Talton, the owner of Blue Marble Strategic, talks about his company’s idea to build a youth baseball complex in Wesley Chapel, while partner and retired Major League Baseball star Gary Sheffield listens in.
baseball program also has become quite popular in various parts of the country. “It won’t be a Cal Ripken facility, or a Bo Jackson facility, but we can always integrate all of those things into what we’re doing,” Sheffield said. “What it does is give us the ability to probably have 20 to 30 MLB players that (at) any one time your kid might bump into, and that ups the brand.” Talton wants to fill Pasco with 20 diamonds — baseball diamonds, that is. Many will have dimensions similar to Major League Baseball, but would include smaller fields as well for younger players. He wants to target teenagers, tapping into an amateur sports camp industry he says is currently worth $7 billion. “We could make between $18 million and $20 million, and that’s just in the sum-
Could the Atlanta Braves someday call Wesley Chapel its home? PAGE 3A mertime alone,”Talton said.“If we took the 13- or 14-year-olds, and we did nothing else, I could pay down my debt service of $54 million.” Several investors are ready to sign on the dotted line to fund the project,Talton said, but only after the county guarantees it will See COMPLEX, page 11A
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Sheffield pitching Pasco to the Atlanta Braves By Michael Hinman
“We would want to put in up to 12,000 seats, but that could be a little ambitious. A lot of what we hear from the league is that they want to have no more than 8,000 seats, because they want to make sure they are filled.”
The Atlanta Braves aren’t making a trip to the postseason this year, but could they instead be planning a trip to Pasco County in a few years? Like for spring training? Gary Sheffield, the retired Major League Baseball star who hit 64 home runs when he played two seasons for the Braves more than a decade ago, believes his old team will come.And if not them, maybe the Houston Astros or Toronto Blue Jays — both which have expressed interest in looking for new spring training homes — instead. Regardless, the former outfielder says the proposed $70 million baseball complex planned on 100 acres in the Wiregrass Ranch area will be so attractive, it would be impossible for any Major League team to turn it down. “They don’t want to be second to Disney,” Sheffield told a group of business leaders recently at a Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce economic development meeting. “The problem they are having is that the fans coming to the games there are not Braves fans.They are there for Disney, and that is a problem for them.” The Braves have played spring training at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex near Disney World in Orlando since 1998, but have been unofficially considering other options in recent months since their lease there is set to expire in 2017. Wesley Chapel could be perfect for the team, Sheffield says, since many might consider the Interstate 75 trip between there and Atlanta a straight shot. It also makes sense as a second home for the team without making it inconvenient for its fan base. “That is an easy commute for them,” Sheffield said. “All those fans could come straight here, plus go to other places like Disney and Clearwater Beach, since they would be close by.That is a possibility that is pretty much there for the taking.” The sports complex was proposed by James Talton, owner of Blue Marble Strategic, and would supply 20 baseball and multipurpose athletic fields, as well as dormitories for players and other amenities. It’s a way to tap into the lucrative youth baseball market, he said. Talton is raising $54 million in private funding, and looking for $11 million from Pasco County tourist tax money, to make
— Gary Sheffield
MICHAEL HINMAN/STAFF PHOTO
Major League Baseball star and Tampa native Gary Sheffield talks to some representatives of Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel after a recent meeting with the Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce.
such a project a reality. Even without a major stadium component,Talton feels his sports complex could play a role in creating 8,000 jobs in the county, and produce $318 million in annual economic impact, as well as a direct revenue stream of $9 million each year to the county government. But if the project could attract a Major League team, there’s no telling how big of an impact that would have in the Wesley Chapel area,Talton said. Creating a separate field for spring training would not be anywhere near the headache the Tampa Bay Rays are experiencing with its efforts to get out of Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. In fact, spring training fields are typically much smaller than regular season venues,Talton said, where average attendance usually holds around 6,700.
“We would want to put in up to 12,000 seats, but that could be a little ambitious,” he said.“A lot of what we hear from the league is that they want to have no more than 8,000 seats, because they want to make sure they are filled.” Yet, just from his own youth baseball operations,Talton believes he can fill 3,000 of those seats with his players and families that might be using the rest of the facility during spring training time. He wants to be open for business by January 2017, which would be just ahead of when the Braves’ lease with Disney expires. But are the Braves even looking to stay in this part of the state? Braves president John Schuerholz told the Atlanta JournalConstitution in March that staying in Central Florida could be tough. Many teams that used to participate in
spring training are looking for other parts of the state, especially south, and it could be tough for Atlanta to travel around if its only nearby opponent is the Detroit Tigers in Lakeland. The Braves want to stay in Florida, however, and have waved off any suggestions the team could move to the other popular spring training state of Arizona. But if the Astros move out of Kissimmee, and the Washington Nationals leave their home in Viera, that could leave the Atlanta team rather isolated in Lake Buena Vista. Yet moving to Wesley Chapel could be a good move in that respect. The Tigers would still be available in Lakeland, joining five other teams in quick driving distance — the New York Yankees in Tampa, the Blue Jays in Dunedin, the Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater, the Pittsburgh Pirates in Bradenton, and the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota. The Braves also would be a lot closer to the Tampa Bay Rays, who play spring training games in Port Charlotte. A request to the Braves for comment is still pending. Sheffield, who was born and raised in Tampa, says he has been spending a lot of time in Pasco County, especially since his kids are members of the Pasco Predators youth athletic teams. Once tourists start discovering the area, they won’t be able to stay away. “There is something about Tampa and Pasco County,” he said.“People can’t leave. They can’t leave the water, or the beautiful places here. It’s totally community-driven.”
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October 1, 2014
Your Community Calendar • Submit 2 weeks in advance to: firstname.lastname@example.org • All listings free of charge
BOOKS FOR TROOPS BOOK DRIVE
Throughout the month of October, Books for Troops will collect paperback books for its annual book drive to support deployed troops around the world. Book genres accepted include action adventure, suspense, mystery, comedy and comic books.The group cannot accept books on religion, the apocalypse or pornographic material. For a list of donation sites, visit BooksForTroops.org. For information on hosting a donation bin at your clubhouse, place of worship, school or business, email BooksforTroops@verizon.net.
Celebrate all things space
PINK PARTY FOR BREAST CANCER
Northwood Community Clubhouse in Wesley Chapel will host a five-part series of self-defense awareness seminars on Wednesdays from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., starting Oct. 1.The seminars are open to adults of all ages, teens and preteens. Individual sessions are $10.61 and up to five sessions for $41.50. For information, email email@example.com, or visit DSFLKarate.com/registration.
ZUMBA GOLD CLASS
Jill Scott will instruct Zumba Gold classes at the Land O’ Lakes Recreation Complex, 3032 Collier Parkway, starting in October. Cost is $6 per class, or five classes for $25. For information, call Jill Scott at (813) 2054248, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the recreation complex at (813) 929-1220.
LOWRY PARK’S ZOOBOO
Lowry Park Zoo, 1101 W. Sligh Ave., in Tampa, will host its annual ZooBoo starting Oct. 3.The event includes haunted houses and trails, gift shop, night rides and more. For dates and tickets, visit LowryParkZoo.com.
BALANCE PROGRAM FOR SENIORS
Anytime Fitness, 7016 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., in Lutz, is offering an Agility & Balance Program for seniors on Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. For information, call Tom Marbell at (352) 409-2984, or email TrainWithTomM@gmail.com.
WOMAN’S CLUB BABY SHOWER
The GFWC Lutz-Land O’ Lakes Woman’s Club is sponsoring a Baby Shower Luncheon and Bunco fundraiser Oct. 2 at the Lutz Community Center, at 98 First Ave. N.W. in Lutz.The fundraiser will benefit Alpha House. Bunco begins at 9:30 a.m., followed by lunch at 11:30 a.m. Cost is $8. Guests should bring a gift for homeless pregnant women and their babies, such as large diapers, white crib sheets, towels and bibs. For information and item suggestions, email PatSerio@tampabay.rr.com.
WATER ART EXHIBIT IN NEW PORT RICHEY
The Downtown New Port Richey Art Gallery, 6231 Grand Blvd., will debut the exhibition “Water:The Essence of Life” Oct. 3 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.The reception will include music and refreshments.The exhibit will be on display throughout October. For information, call (727) 8486500.
‘WHAT WOMEN WANT’ WEBCAST
The Museum of Science and Industry, 4801 E. Fowler Ave., in Tampa, will kick off World Space Week Oct. 3 when NASA engineer Richard Johanboeke visits to discuss robotic off-world mining, telescopes and the future of NASA.
Attorney General Pam Bondi will be the keynote speaker for the “What Women Want 2014” webcast Oct. 9 at 6 p.m.The webcast will feature a discussion of issues high on a woman’s priority list, including the economy, public safety, health care and education.The Land O’ Lakes event will be at Copperstone Executive Suites, 3632 Land O’ Lakes Blvd.Women who wish to participate, can call (813) 996-3011.
Guests can also gaze at the sun with solar scopes from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., in MOSI’s Curiosity Park. World Space Week, Oct. 4-10, will begin with Astronomy Day & Skywatch Oct. 4. The animated series “Space Racers” will be show for preschool children, and in the evening guests can see the stars and gaze at galaxies through high-powered telescopes. Throughout the week, there will be daily planetarium shows, hands-on learning in Idea Zone and space-themed shows.
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Events are included with MOSI admission, and free for members. For information, call (813) 987-6000, or visit MOSI.org.
LUTZ FIRST FRIDAY
The Lutz Citizens’ Coalition’s monthly food truck rally will be Oct. 3 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Lutz Preparatory School, 17951 U.S. 41.
ART EXHIBIT CALLING FOR ENTRIES
The Pasco Arts Council is accepting entries until Oct. 4 for its upcoming Pasco Art Annual Exhibition 2014.The competition is open to professional and amateur artists, age 18 and older.The contest is open to drawings, fine crafts, mixed media, paintings, photography and sculptures. There will be awards and a reception Oct. 10. For information, call (727) 845-7322, email email@example.com, or visit PascoArt.org.
CHRIST CHURCH FALL FESTIVAL
Christ Church Lutz, at 19501 Holly Lane, will host a Fall Festival Oct. 4 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.Activities include an indoor yard sale, a chili cook-off, a bake sale and more. Proceeds will support local missions of the church, which is off North Dale Mabry Highway, just south of County Line Road. For information, call Laura Reed at (813) 401-2332.
Tampa Bay Geocaching Store, 4710 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., Suite 9, will host an Introduction to Geocaching class Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. Geocaching is an outdoor recreational activity in which participants use a GPS or mobile device to hide and seek containers anywhere in the world. To RSVP, stop by the store, or call (813) 321-8747.
BLESSING OF THE ANIMALS
St. Clement’s Episcopal Church, 706 W. 113th Ave., in Tampa, will have a Blessing of the Animals Festival Oct. 4 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.There will be a service at 10 a.m., pets and kids parade at noon, pet grooming, arts and crafts show, food, prize drawings, handbell choir, horse handling demonstration and more.Admission is free. For information, call (813) 932-6204.
HERITAGE CHURCH HOSTS EVANGELIST
information, call (813) 909-4080, or visit YesHeritage.com.
FASHION SHOW, COMPETITION
St. Jude Children’s Cancer Research Hospital Fashion Show Competiton and Runway Training will be Oct. 5 at Hunter’s Green Country Club in New Tampa. Designers include Wicked Cute Kids, Itty Bitty Beauties and local merchants from The Shops at Wiregrass.Tickets are $10. For information, call (813) 205-6376, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
GARDEN CLUB FIELD TRIP
The Land O’ Lakes Garden Club will go on a field trip to a bamboo farm Oct. 7 at 10:30 a.m.The club will meet in the parking lot at Winn Dixie, State Road 54 and Old Pasco Road, in Wesley Chapel. Bring a snack and drink. Guest speaker will be L. Daszkiewicz, master gardener. For information, call (813) 961-2697.
CLASSIC MOVIES AT COBB FOR $5
Cobb Grove 16 & CineBistro, 6333 Wesley Grove Blvd., in Wesley Chapel, is offering CineClassics 2014. Upcoming shows include “Raiders of the Lost Ark” Oct. 7, and “Animal House” Oct. 14.All shows begin at 6:30 p.m. Guests should arrive 30 minutes prior for in-theatre CineBistro service. Tickets are $5 and are available at the concierge or CobbTheatres/CobbCinebistro.com. For information, call (813) 948-5444.
HOME BUYING WORKSHOPS
There will be a home buying workshop Oct. 7-8 from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., at the Pasco County Commissioners office, 8731 Citizens Drive in New Port Richey.To register, call (727) 442-7075.
Heritage Church, 1854 Oak Grove Blvd., in Lutz, will host evangelist John Jacobs for “A Strength Team with a Message of Hope to Lift the World” Oct. 5 at 6 p.m.Admission is free.The event is for all ages. For
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PASCO JUNIORS MEETING
The GFWC Pasco Junior Woman’s Club will meet Oct. 7 at 6:30 p.m., at the Seven Oaks Clubhouse, 2910 Sports Core Circle in Wesley Chapel. Guests are asked to wear purple in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The Pasco County Extension Office will have a Growing Winter Vegetables seminar Oct. 7 at 5:30 p.m., at the Hudson Library, 80812 Library Road. For information, call (727) 847-2411 or (813) 996-2411.
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FALL FEST AT THE GROVE
The Grove at Wesley Chapel will have its 2014 Fall Festival Oct. 11 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.The event will include live music, food, beverages, arts and crafts, and entertainment.There will also be a nature show, Little Miss & Mr. Pumpkin Pageant, wing contest, pet costume contest, face painting and a pumpkin patch. For information on pageant, call Robyn Liska at (813) 949-0291, Ext. 5613. For information on festival, visit GroveShopping.com.
PIONEER DESCENDANTS PICNIC
The Lutz/Land O’ Lakes Pioneer Descendants Picnic will be Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Old Lutz School, 18819 U.S. 41 in Lutz. Guess should bring a potluck choice of one meat/vegetable or one dessert. Cost is $5 for adults, $1 for children ages 8-12, and free for children younger than 8. For information, call Annie Fernandez at (813) 784-4471.
BUDDY BREAK FOR SPECIAL NEEDS KIDS
Victorious Life Church, 6224 Old Pasco Road in Wesley Chapel, hosts the ministry “Buddy Break” the fourth Saturday of each month from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.The program pairs a special needs child with a “buddy” to give the child’s caregiver a break. For information, call Tom or Susan Coleman at (813) 997-2233, or email email@example.com. Susan Mosher of Back in Health Wellness Center in Lutz is hosting Pilates classes on Tuesdays at 10 a.m., at the Ballantrae clubhouse on State Road 54. Classes are a small-group setting and $8 each. First class is free. For information and directions, email Susan Mosher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
VISIT WC CIVIL AIR PATROL
Wesley Chapel Cadet Squadron of Civil Air Patrol, located at the North Tampa Aero Park just off Wesley Chapel Boulevard, meets Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m., next to the airport hangar. Cadets range from 12 to 21 years old. For information and a schedule of activities, visit WesleyChapelCAP.com.
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The Hillsborough County UF/IFAS Extension is celebrating its 100th anniversary of Florida Extension Oct. 9 at 4 p.m., at the Extension office, 5339 County Road 579 in Seffner.There will be a showcase of exhibits, garden tours and recognition of volunteers.Admission is free. For information, visit HillsboroughCounty.org/Extension.
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There will be a Pink Party at Alchemy Art Bar, 25 Dodecanese Blvd., in Tarpon Springs, Oct. 9 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.There will be a silent auction.All proceeds will benefit local breast cancer charities. For information, call Paul Phillips at (386) 334-5942.
ARMISTICE DAY FUNDRAISER NEEDS SPONSORS
The Tampa Bay Golf & Country Club, 10641 Old Tampa Bay Drive in San Antonio, will host an Armistice Day Dinner Party and Fundraiser Nov. 11 for Support the Troops and the community’s resident veterans, with a special recognition of World War II veterans. Donations are being sought for raffles and a silent auction. Sponsorship packages that include dinner, a company banner and recognition in a newsletter and on TV are available. For information, call John Benvengo at (917) 754-1726, or email email@example.com.
The Gulfview Chapter of The Embroiders’ Guild of America will meet Oct. 8 at 10:30 a.m., at The Lakeside Club, 12606 Shadow Ridge Blvd., in Hudson.There will be a meeting, a trunk sale of stitching items, and a potluck luncheon. For information, call Betty Brandt at (727) 856-3643.
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Lopez-Cantera pulls no punches against Crist PRESENTS
By Michael Hinman firstname.lastname@example.org
Carlos Lopez-Cantera is Florida’s secondin-command behind Gov. Rick Scott, but there are still pockets of the state he has only heard about. That included Zephyrhills, until he finally found his way to the City of Pure Water last week in a campaign stop in front of the Conservative Club of East Pasco.And while he might talk about how the governor has kept is word to the point that “even Democrats can’t deny it,” Lopez-Cantera had almost nothing good to say about who Scott succeeded and is facing again in the November election: Charlie Crist. “When Gov. Scott took over, we had lost 830,000 jobs, and had an 11.1 percent unemployment rate,” all from the Crist administration, Lopez-Cantera said. “Since then, we have added 640,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate is 6.3 percent.” Yet while some might point out the entire nation was in an economic crisis during a good part of Crist’s tenure as governor between 2007 and 2011, Lopez-Cantera accused the former governor of continuously abandoning his post when he was needed the most. “He didn’t even want to be governor when he was governor,” Lopez-Cantera said of Crist.“The first two years, he was chasing the vice presidency and not focusing on the state.The second two years, he was running for a United States Senate seat.And he is the first governor in the history of Florida to not run for re-election. That is how much he cared about being governor.” Lopez-Cantera was a member of the Florida House representing the Miami area during Crist’s time in the governor’s office, and said he withdrew support of the governor almost from the beginning, despite the two being members of the same political party at the time. “I have known Charlie for almost 20 years, and I really got to know him when I was a new member of the Florida House,” Lopez-Cantera said.“That’s when I lost faith in him.” The lieutenant governor said problems started for him when then House Speaker Marco Rubio wanted to pass a much more aggressive property tax bill that would provide larger exemptions on the first $200,000 of a home’s value, and then 15 percent beyond that. Crist, however,“wanted a simple property tax bill, and that is unfortunately what the citizens of Florida got.” Lopez-Cantera and Rubio, however, would vote for Crist’s version of the bill in a special session, using a property tax exemption method still used today. All of Scott’s decisions “have not been popular,” either, Lopez-Cantera said.“But they
SATURDAY OCTOBER 11TH in The GROVE at Wesley Chapel (I-75 and SR 54)
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MICHAEL HINMAN/STAFF PHOTO
Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera gives a campaign stump speech to members of the Conservative Club of East Pasco during an appearance Sept. 22.
Find more online Campaign speeches tend to just lightly touch on a number of different issues voters may care about, and Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera had a lot to say in Gov. Rick Scott’s re-election campaign against former governor Charlie Crist. But what’s the full story behind some of LopezCantera’s statements? Go online right now, and reach our fact-check at tinyurl.com/LtGovCheck.
have been the right decisions for the state’s economy.” If Scott is re-elected, Lopez-Cantera said residents can expect another $1 million in tax cuts, and another $120 million assessed through cellphone usage. Lopez-Cantera assumed the lieutenant governor’s office in February following the resignation of Jennifer Carroll, Crist’s original running mate in 2010. She resigned last year after she was questioned about her alleged involvement in pushing money toward Internet cafes, which some say are fronts for illegal gambling in the state. “I talk to the governor all the time about the turnaround here in the state,” LopezCantera said.“I’ve only been here for eight months, but I get to take credit for all his hard work.This is the hardest-working governor that I have ever seen, and I served with three governors.”
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October 1, 2014
Take steps to protect yourself against the West Nile virus By B.C. Manion email@example.com
A human case of the West Nile virus has been confirmed in Pasco County, and officials are advising residents to take precautions to avoid becoming ill. It is important for people to “cover and drain” — meaning they should wear clothing or use repellent to avoid mosquito bites and should drain standing water on their property, said Deanna Krautner, public information officer for the Florida Department of Health in Pasco County. West Nile virus is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most people who are infected with West Nile virus will have no symptoms, but about one-in-five people infected will develop a fever with other symptoms, the CDC said. Less than 1 percent of those infected will develop a serious and sometimes fatal neurological illness. The cool weather is drawing more people outdoors, Krautner said, and recent rains have left puddles of standing water on many properties.That can spell greater opportunity for mosquito bites and the illnesses that can accompany them. To help avoid potential illness, the health department recommends a number of precautions. To reduce exposure to mosquitoes, residents should: • Drain water from garbage cans, house gutters, buckets, pool covers, coolers, toys, flowerpots, or any other containers where sprinkler or rain water has collected. • Discard old tires, drums, bottles, cans, pots and pans, broken appliances and other items that aren’t being used. • Empty and clean birdbaths and pet water bowls at least once or twice a week. • Protect boats and vehicles from rain with tarps that don’t accumulate water. • Maintain swimming pools in good con-
COURTESY OF FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH IN PASCO COUNTY
A human case of the West Nile virus has been confirmed in Pasco County, prompting officials to issue an advisory outlining precautions that residents can take to reduce their chances of being bitten by a mosquito that could make them ill.
dition, and appropriately chlorinate them. Empty plastic swimming pools when not in use. • Cover skin with clothing or repellent. Wear shoes, socks, long pants and long sleeves.This type of protection may be necessary for people who must work in areas where mosquitoes are present. • Apply mosquito repellent to bare skin and clothing, and use mosquito netting to protect children younger than 2 months. When it comes to using repellents, members of the Pasco County division of the health department suggests people read label directions carefully, since some repellents are not suitable for children. Products with concentrations of up to 30 percent DEET are generally recommended. Other approved repellents from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency including Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535. Repellent should be applied to exposed skin or onto clothing, but not under clothing.
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PRICE REDUCED DUPREE LAKES WITH UPSTAIRS RETREAT – Almost new 5/2.5/2 (2546 sq.ft.) on cul-de-sac; granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, wood cabinets, ceramic tile. Bonus room with half bathroom upstairs. Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712
LAKE LOTS CANAL TO LAKE THOMAS - Manufactured home located 1.3 acres; 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Bring the boat and jet skis! Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712 2 ACRES ON BIG LAKE THOMAS – 200 feet of lake frontage; possibly divisible into two separate lots. Ready to build your own lakefront dream home! Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712
EXECUTIVE HOME IN SOUTHERN HILLS PLANTATION. 2 story with golf course frontage, pool/spa, outdoor kitchen, 4 bedrooms + man cave, TWO MASTER SUITES, 4482 ft2. Call Vernon Taylor 813-300-4677 or Laure Taylor 813-300-4676.
PRICE REDUCED: .86 ACRES ON BIG LAKE THOMAS; Boat ramp and dock, concrete screened pavilion; well and septic; corner lot; some impact fees paid; bring the ski boat! Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712
SPRING HILL BEAUTY - 2/2/2 Pool home with screen enclosure ideal for entertainment, huge corner lot, sprinkler plus big driveway for 6 cars. Newer Shingles and Central air Con. Price reduced for quick sale!!! Only $84,900. Call Irving Hernandez 813-843-6026
VACANT PROPERTY MOBILE HOME LOT on St Matthews in Land O'Lakes including impact fees, septic and well on a half acre for $28,000!!! Call Faith Garcia 813-503-6610 today!
PRIVATE OASIS LAKEFRONT RETREAT – Contemporary style home located on two waterfront sites from the world renowned Dupree Botanical Gardens on Lake Dupree; new roof, kitchen & bathroom, extensive solar panels. Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712 LAKE FRONT in Grey Hawk. Gated, 2949 ft2, no CDD, 3/3 with a den, PLUS upstairs bonus/bed room. Formal dining. Community park. Near 54 & Suncoast Call Vernon Taylor 813300-4677 or Laure Taylor 813-300-4676. SKI SIZE LAKE PADGETT ACREAGE – Home and cottage; 3.74 acres on ski sized Lake Padgett, land has possibility to build one or more executive homes. Call Cody Adams 813-909-0712
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2.1 ACRE LOT zoned for two modular homes on Lake Thomas Road in Land O'Lakes, FL for only $59,000! Call Faith Garcia today 813-503-6610
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LITTLEFIELD JOINS FORCES WITH MOORE They may have been foes during the primary, but former state Rep. Ken Littlefield has taken sides in the November election, joining the campaign of Republican candidate Mike Moore in his efforts to replace the retiring Pat Mulieri on the Pasco County Commission. Moore, who faces Democrat Erika Remsberg in the November election, revealed the new team during a recent Conservative Club of East Pasco meeting. “I am helping Mike in the general election,” Littlefield said, adding with a laugh, “I’m bringing back the (Moore political) signs that I stole.” Littlefield and Zephyrhills financial analyst Bob Robertson were defeated in the August primary by Moore, who raised more than 10 times the money they did. Littlefield attacked Moore throughout the primary on a variety of topics, including the amount of money he was raising from people in the development community. Moore has raised $10,500 in the first two weeks of September, bringing his campaign total to nearly $113,500. All but about $1,500 of it came from a group of development companies under common ownership, Lew Friedland of Tarpon Springs. Moore has a little more than $13,000 in cash available, according to campaign finance reports. Remsberg raised $475 during that same time, bringing her total to just under $6,500. She has about $460 in the bank for her campaign.
NEWLON, BILIRAKIS ENDORSE BURGESS
San Antonio mayor Tim Newlon has endorsed Danny Burgess in his run for state House District 38. “Danny has always demonstrated dedication to our East Pasco communities,” Newlon said, in a release. “I am confident Danny will provide the leadership we need in our state capitol.” Also endorsing Burgess is U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor. “Danny is a dynamic and proven leader who has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to excellence, unrivaled work ethic, and a fervent passion for public service,” Bilirakis said, in a release.“With a strong vision for how to leverage the strengths of our community in order to facilitate continued progress, I am confident Danny is the right candidate for this seat.” Burgess faces Democrat Beverly Ledbetter in the November election. Both are seeking to replace Will Weatherford, who is stepping down because of term limits.
FEDERATED REPUBLICAN WOMEN MEET IN OCTOBER
The Pasco Federated Republican Women’s Club will meet Oct. 3 at 11:30 a.m., at Fox Hollow Golf Club, 10050 Robert Trent Jones Parkway in Trinity. The event will include a chance to meet some of the candidates for public office, including Danny Burgess for state House District 38, Chris Gregg for state House District 36, and Mike Moore for Pasco County Commission. Cost is $15. For information, call Fran Scerbo at (727) 597-3727, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ROSS WANTS TO CHARTER NAI
U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross has introduced a bill to grant a federal charter to the National Academy of Inventors. “I wholeheartedly believe that the key component of global competitiveness and economic development stems from those who are motivated and determined to succeed,” the Lakeland Republican said, in a release.“Determination drives innovation and encourages our society to develop new technologies and establish entrepreneurship.” NAI is based at the University of South Florida, Ross said, which boasts 3,000 individual inventor members and fellows from more than 200 institutions. The government does not provide funds to Congressional charters. However, a charter like this allows Congress to merit research. Ross is up for re-election, facing Democrat Alan Cohn in November.
HART NEEDS BOARD MEMBERS
The Hillsborough County Commission is seeking applications for the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority, due Oct. 2. Those who wish to serve must be registered voters in Hillsborough, live in the unincorporated part of the county, and be willing to serve in a voluntary capacity with no compensation.Those who serve also will be required to provide financial disclosure. Appointments will be scheduled for a meeting of the county commissioners on Oct. 15. Three three-year terms are expiring. Necessary forms are available at HillsboroughCounty.org, and by clicking “government,”“board and committee,” and then selecting the forms related to HART. For information, call (813) 272-5826.
It’s your brain that hears. Not your ears.
ADVOCACY GROUP OFFERS VOTERS GUIDE
Florida TaxWatch is offering a voter’s guide through its TaxWatch Center for Florida Citizenship, which will inform residents on key issues the group advocates. The voter’s guide will address proposed state constitutional amendments appearing on the November ballot, as well as provide opinions based on the group’s political position on those issues. Among the members for the new TaxWatch Center board is Susan MacManus, a Land O’ Lakes native, and professor at the University of South Florida. The guide can be found at tinyurl.com/TaxWatchGuide.
ROSS GETS FARMING AWARD
U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross has received the Friend of Farm Bureau award for being what the organization says is receptive to the needs of farmers in the state by sponsoring, co-sponsoring, and voting for legislation that will address high-priority agricultural issues. “Florida’s citrus farmers supply about 56 percent of the orange juice consumed in the United States,” Ross said, in a release.“We must allow the livelihood of farmers and Florida agriculture to continue to flourish. Ross voted for the federal Farm Bill in January, which included $125 million to help fight a deadly citrus greening disease. He also asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to take action to help keep diseased Florida citrus groves productive by providing short-term research initiatives. Ross, who is facing Democrat Alan Cohn in November, was nominated by the Florida Farm Bureau, and was approved by the American Farm Bureau Federation’s board of directors.
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October 1, 2014
Partisan politics infest county commission race By Michael Hinman
said.“Typically, I don’t talk about my opponents as we had a very positive campaign in the primary, and we’ll continue to do that. It’s been four years since a Democrat has But we are running against a liberal, someserved on the Pasco County Commission, thing she has mentioned in the newspapers but Erika Remsberg hopes to and in her talks. That is what change that with just one election we’re up against.” in November. To be fair to Moore, he was However, she has a formidable speaking in front of the opponent in the form of Conservative Club of East Pasco, Republican Mike Moore, who not so such discourse would likely only has out-fundraised her 19-tobe welcomed in front of the au1, but seems to be the shoo-in to dience. But what exactly Moore replace the retiring Pat Mulieri in meant by “liberal” he didn’t get District 2. into. Mike Moore However, as the commission’s Instead, Moore asked the polast Democrat, Mike Cox, learned in 2010 litical group during a recent meeting in — dollars don’t necessarily equate to votes. Zephyrhills to help his campaign by going Despite a nearly 20-to-1 fundraising advan- door-to-door and waving campaign signs. tage, he lost his seat to then newcomer In an email after the speech, Remsberg Henry Wilson Jr. found the fact that she was even mentioned Moore doesn’t want history to repeat it- at all by a presumed frontrunner to be enself, so it’s probably no surprise he spent a couraging. recent campaign speech distancing himself “Maybe I am getting somewhere if the from Remsberg … by calling her the “L” stones are being thrown,” she said.“I am not word. interested in divisive politics. Not at all. I am “We have a person running against me interested in people, their rights, their ability now that is a self-proclaimed liberal,” Moore to stay in their homes, retain their property,
and as much of their money as possible.” that he didn’t want to get caught up in a Although as a Democrat, Remsberg does- label war. n’t deny the “liberal” label, she said her “Our campaign has focused on the iscampaign is attracting the attention and sues important to our community, including support of some voters from across the creating new jobs and new opportunities aisle. here in Pasco County,” he said, in “I am finding more a statement.“We’ve run a positive Republicans open to my ideas campaign, focusing on the issues because they are Pasco residentwhich impact all of us, and the friendly ideas,” she said.They are solutions which unite us. I am “not politically driven ideas, not optimistic as each day we continideas motivated by outside interue meeting with voters across ests, but ideas focused on our community, sharing our posihelping our current residents. tive message, and working “Residents in our county are Erika Remsberg together to bring about a being asked to pay more for the brighter future for Pasco County.” sake of growth, (and) I am concerned about But Remsberg wasn’t necessarily ready this.” to accept that. She said it’s this kind of poliRemsberg even included what she said tics that have created some of the issues was a dictionary definition of “liberal,” which that have prevented good ideas from movwas defined as “open to new behavior or ing forward in the county. opinions, and willing to discard traditional “The commission should be nonpartisan, values.” because the social issues that divide the “Yes, I agree I am open to new ideas, (parties) are generally not a factor at the seek to broaden my scope of knowledge, county level,” she said. “We need less diviand acknowledge different interpretations siveness and more consensus building.” and perspectives,” she added. Voters will decide between Moore and Moore later told The Laker/Lutz News Remsberg in the Nov. 4 elections.
Tax collector goes pink for breast cancer awareness The Laker/Lutz News Staff Report
The Pasco County Tax Collector’s office is looking to raise money for the Florida Breast Cancer Foundation, and has made the organization its spotlight charity for October. That means during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, county tax collector Mike Fasano and his staff will work to raise money for the disease that he says is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women in Florida next to skin cancer. It’s estimated that about 12,000 new cases will be diagnosed in the next 12 months. The five branches of the tax collector’s office will promote the “End Breast Cancer” specialty license plate, which has historical-
The Pasco County Tax Collector’s office is paying close attention to the ‘End Breast Cancer’ specialty plates in October, to help raise awareness — and funds — for the Florida Breast Cancer COURTESY OF PASCO COUNTY TAX COLLECTOR Foundation.
ly raised more than $4 million dollars used for research and education grants throughout the state. “In October, we are proud to help shine
a spotlight on the needs of breast cancer patients in the hopes that this disease will one day be cured,” Fasano said, in a release.“The proceeds from the sale of this plate will go a
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long way toward ending a disease that afflicts so many women, both locally and nationwide.” Drivers who have vehicle tag registrations coming due in October can choose to trade in their regular license plates for the specialty tag, Fasano said. Customers also can purchase the tag for newly registered vehicles. Proceeds from the tag promotion go directly to the Florida Breast Cancer Foundation. For more information on the group, visit FloridaBreastCancer.org. To learn more about services provided by the Pasco County Tax Collector’s office, call Greg Giordano at (727) 847-8179, or visit PascoTaxes.com.
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DOWNTOWN, from page 1A ment, said William Payne, who owns some parcels of land in the proposed downtown district. “The concept of public utilities brings fear to the local residents,” Payne, the owner of the engineering firm WSP Consultants in Lutz, said.“There is a very, very small group of vocal people, and they are very, very united.They oppose any potential development from County Line Road, all the way (south) to Avila.We could have downtown Lutz as a destination, and not just watch people go by us at 55 mph. Right now, those drivers have no reason to stop, and that’s hurting Lutz.” However, Lutz has worked hard to maintain its small town atmosphere, despite the population explosion surrounding it. Some of the residents there have fought for decades to maintain the small-town character that has defined Lutz for so long, and feel improvements at this level could turn the community into just another retail district. “There is this misnomer out there that our coalition is against growth, but we’re not against growth at all,” said Mike White, president of the Lutz Citizens Coalition. “We’re just against unplanned and bad growth that negatively impacts the community.” Another misnomer,White said, is that it’s the lack of water and sewage infrastructure that’s preventing businesses like restaurants from finding their way into the Lutz downtown area along U.S. 41. “What’s keeping the chain restaurant from coming into Lutz has nothing to do with infrastructure, and has everything to do with the market,” he said. Mills and other Planning Commission officials met with a small group of residents in
September to explore some of the ideas. But even if they do get approved, Payne says he doesn’t expect to see any actual work being done for at least another decade. Septic tanks can be problematic beyond just wastewater disposal because it limits the number of parking spaces available on a property, Payne said. For example, his land on First Street Southwest that is currently home to a jazzercise center could be a great spot for the kind of business Lutz rarely sees. “It’s a perfect spot for a coffee shop and drive-thru,” he said.“We’re in a high-income area, and the demographics suggest something like that can do well. But we can’t open something like that without sewer lines.” The affected areas, according to Mills, include Lutz’s historic downtown area to Newberger Road, Crystal Lake Road to Sunset Lane, and the Crenshaw Lake Road area. The way county officials talked, these pending upgrades already are a done deal, White said. “Well, there isn’t much that we can do about it, to be honest with you,” he said. “Right now, the county is very pro-development, and we’ll just have to wait and see what comes down the pipeline.” In the meantime, work crews are installing a water pipeline along U.S. 41, with businesses along the line able to connect if they are directly on it. Payne said he would connect his parcels to it as soon as the county allows. “I look at it as positive development,” he said.“And this is what the zoning and planning commission are here for.They restrict what goes in there, so you can still keep a community protected, but welcome the amenities you need and want, too.”
COURTESY OF BLUE MARBLE STRATEGIC
What do young baseball players and families do in between games on a tournament weekend? A proposed new baseball complex on Wiregrass Ranch in Wesley Chapel would answer that question with lounges such as this, if funding can be secured to build the $70 million facility.
COMPLEX, from page 1A spend $11 million in collected tourist tax money from local hotels to help balance out some of the costs. The return for the county could be extraordinary, according to Talton’s estimates. That includes the creation of an estimated 8,000 jobs, a $318 million annual economic impact boost to the county, and even $9 million in direct revenue from taxes and other costs, that would go directly back to the county. “We’re already thinking we can make $53 million in revenue each year, and $16 million in net profit,”Talton said. The more than 100 acres needed to construct the facility, not far from Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel, would cost about $5 million, Talton said. And it could create Wesley Chapel into a major destination, especially for families looking to spend the money they need to help their kids play better baseball. The facility could have other benefits as well. Besides possibly expanding to include a small stadium to attract a Major League
Baseball team for spring training, the new baseball complex would need plenty of nearby amenities, including hotels and restaurants — providing even more economic opportunities in the area. “We don’t want this facility sitting out here by itself,” he said.“We don’t want people rushing to Busch Gardens or to Tampa because there is nothing here. We need to see this kind of growth in the immediate area.” But a grand opening is still some time down the road.Talton has until next week to secure his overall financing, but then he’ll have to work with the county through the land development and permitting stage. If everything stays on schedule, the complex could be open to its first ballplayers in January 2017. “We can’t predict how big this is going to be,” Sheffield said.“And I think it’s going to be 10 times bigger than what James is putting to paper right now.” The county has essentially committed $11 million to the project, but Talton says some language in its legal documents need to be cleared up, so that the final amount doesn’t come in below $11 million.
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Brooke Stinnett, 21, of Lutz, will play the role of Lucy in the classic Charles Schulz stage production, ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.’ This is Brooke’s first lead part with the New Tampa Players, a stage production company based out of CrossPointe Church.
CHARLIE, from page 1A Broadway feel to them, while retaining the character warmth from the original that people have come to expect from a “Peanuts” production. Stinnett also brings an acting pedigree to the stage. Her mother, Victoria, has performed for New Tampa Players, and her father, Scott, was in a production as well. Younger sisters Reagan and Eva have had roles with the company, too. In fact, when New Tampa Players performed “The Sound of Music,” grandfather Earl Myers joined Brooke,Victoria and Eva in the production. “It definitely runs in the family,” Stinnett said. While singing is almost second nature for her, being outgoing doesn’t come naturally at all. Stinnett admits to being a shy person in her everyday life. But acting and singing allows her to take on a character’s traits and become that persona during the performance. “I’m a different person when I’m on stage, and it’s always been that way,” she said. “There’s something different about being on stage where I can open up more.”
Stinnett attends the University of South Florida, where she doesn’t do theater but instead studies computer science. While she admits that might sound like a better fit for a shy personality, Stinnett also doesn’t stray too far from her theatrical roots. She volunteers at her alma mater, Wharton High School, where she serves as musical director. Stinnett will have plenty of scenes to show off her portrayal of Lucy to the audience, and it provides some challenges for her.The hardest part about playing the character is her demeanor. She’s simply not that mean or opinionated in real life. The best thing about playing Lucy? “I guess it would be the same exact thing,” Stinnett said.“I get to be someone completely different than I normally am, and interact with other actors in different ways than I’m used to.” “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” features the “Peanuts” personalities people know in a series of stories, Meekins said, with musical numbers that add depth to the characters in a way the audience will appreciate. “They can expect an evening of musical comedy,” he said.“I would say it’s a series of comic strips that are sewn together.”
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MONKS CREATE SAND MANDALA FOR PEACE WEEK
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SAINT LEO MUD ENDEAVOR V
Saint Leo University Veteran Student Services are partnering with Mud Endeavor to sponsor Mud Endeavor V, an obstacle course race, Oct. 4 at 29251 Wildlife Lane in Brooksville. All proceeds from those who preregister will benefit the school’s Veteran Student Services and Military Education Excellence. Waves of participants will start with competitive runners at 9 a.m. Participants must be at least 13 years old. Preregistration is $45, with promotional code STLEOVETS. To register, visit MudEndeavor.webconnex.comme5. For information, call Tedd Weiser at (352) 588-8234.
ACADEMY AT THE LAKES INFO SESSIONS
Academy at the Lakes, 2331 Collier Parkway in Land O’ Lakes, is hosting ‘coffee and conversation’ groups for anyone interested in learning more about the school. All sessions are from 10:30 a.m. to noon at these locations: • Oct. 6, Tampa Palms Swim Clubhouse, 16402 Tampa Palms Blvd., in New Tampa • Oct. 27, Seven Oaks Community Center, 2910 Sports Core Circle, in Wesley Chapel • Nov. 3, The Lodge at Wilderness Lake Preserve, 21320 Wilderness Lake Blvd., in Land O’ Lakes • Nov. 10, Grand Hampton Clubhouse, 8301 Dunham Station Drive in Tampa
In celebration of Peace Week at PascoHernando State College, Buddhist monks are constructing a sand mandala, whichi is a circle, in the third floor lobby at Porter Campus at Wiregrass Ranch, 2727 Mansfield Blvd., in Wesley Chapel. Visitors can view the creation Oct. 6-9 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Upon completion, Drupon Thinley Ningpo Rinpoche will offer a sand mandala teaching Oct. 9 at 3:30 p.m., followed by a dissolution ceremony to signify spreading kindness and compassion at 6 p.m. There will also be a Peace Festival Oct. 9 from noon to 3:30 p.m. For information, visit PHSC.edu/peace.
NURSING INFO SESSION AT PHSC
Pasco-Hernando State College will host an information session on its new Bachelor of Science in nursing degree Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. at the West Campus, 10320 Ridge Road in New Port Richey. The new online program provides additional management, leadership, theory and research training to licensed registered nurses holding an Associate in Science in nursing degree. Admission is free but seating is limited.To RSVP, visit PHSC.edu/rsvp. For more information, call (727) 8163274.
BOOK FAIR AT DENHAM OAKS
Denham Oaks Elementary School, 1422 Oak Grove Blvd., in Lutz, is having a Family Book Fair Night Oct. 9 from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. For information, call (813) 794-1600.
STUDENT VIDEO CHALLENGE
The Florida Coordinating Committee of the Informed Voters Project of the National Association of Women Judges is inviting all Florida residents, especially high school, college and law students, to participate in the 2014 Constitution Day Florida Video Challenge. The challenge aims to allow participants to express their interest in the missions of the Informed Voters Project (IVP) through the creation of a short film. Videos must be based on any or all of the following topics: • The qualities that make a good judge • What our legal system would be like if our judiciary was not fair and free • The importance of an informed electorate in voting on judges Participants can enter as individuals or in teams up to five people. Submissions will be accepted through Oct. 17. Viewing and voting will take place between Oct. 18-Nov. 17. There is a $1,000 first place cash prize with recognition on the IVP website and lunch with Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente. Second place is a $500 cash prize. Third place is a $100 cash prize. For contest rules and to participate, visit Facebook.com/informedvotersproject. For information on IVP, visit IVP.NAWJ.org.
STUDENTS RECOGNIZED AS NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARS
SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test who met published program participation requirements. The local students are: • Brendan Foley, Pasco High School • Lisa Goldsworthy, Sunlake High School • Veronica Grady, Land O’ Lakes High School • Emily Suvannasankha, Land O’ Lakes High School • Olivia Sunna, Wiregrass Ranch High School
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS OFFERS FREE INTERACTIVE E-BOOKS
The Library of Congress is offering students a set of free interactive e-books for tablets. The new Library of Congress Student Discovery Sets bring together historical artifacts and one-of-a-kind documents in a range of topics from history to science to literature. Interactive tools let students zoom in for close examination, draw to highlight interesting details, and make notes about what they discover. The first six Student Discovery Sets are available now for iPad, and can be downloaded for free on iBooks.These sets cover the U.S. Constitution, Symbols of the United States, Immigration, the Dust Bowl, the Harlem Renaissance, and Understanding the Cosmos. For information, visit the website at LOC.gov/teachers/student-discovery-sets/.
BISHOP MCLAUGHLIN OPEN HOUSE
Five Pasco County high school students in The Laker/Lutz News coverage area have been named as National Merit Scholarship semifinalists. National Merit Scholarship Corporation officials recognized high school seniors with the highest scores on the Preliminary
Bishop McLaughlin Catholic School, 13651 Hays Road in Spring Hill, will host an open house Nov. 2 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. There will be family tours, and individuals can sign up for shadow dates. Step-Up scholarships are accepted. For information, call (727) 857-2600, or visit BMCHS.org.
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LIBRARIES Land O’ Lakes Branch Library • Toddler Storytime, 10:15 a.m. and 10:45 a.m., every Friday • Preschool Storytime, 11:30 a.m., every Friday • Reading Buddies, 10 a.m., every Saturday • Alzheimer’s Association/Caregiver Support, 11 a.m., Oct. 1 • Baby Signing Time, 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., every Thursday • FRC Robotics, 4 p.m., every Thursday • Teen game night, 6 p.m., Oct. 3 • CoderDojo Tampa Bay, 11 a.m., Oct. 4 and Oct. 18 • Popcorn and a movie, 2 p.m., Oct. 4 • Anime Club, 6 p.m., Oct. 7 • Computer skills, 10 a.m., Oct. 8 • Senior panel questions and answers, 11 a.m., Oct. 8 • Taste of Sunshine, 5 p.m., Oct. 8 and Oct. 9 • Social Seniors, 10 a.m., Oct. 9 • Toddler Time, 10 a.m., Oct. 11 • Pre-teen gaming, 2 p.m., Oct. 11 • Japanese class, 3 p.m., Oct. 11 and Oct. 25 • Teen volunteer training, 5 p.m., Oct. 14 • Teen Advisory Board, 6 p.m., Oct. 14 and Oct. 28 • Land O’ Lakes Book Club, 1:30 p.m., Oct. 15 • Friends of the Land O’ Lakes Library meeting, 2:30 p.m., Oct. 15 • Afternoon movie, 1:15 p.m., Oct. 17 • 16 and older game night, 6 p.m., Oct. 17 • Kids crafts – Spooktacular Creations, 2 p.m., Oct. 17 • Family night out – Hodgepodge Hoopla, 6:30 p.m., Oct. 21 • Tablet time – table basics, 10 a.m., Oct. 22 • Senior Games, 10 a.m., Oct. 23 • Halloween dance, 7 p.m., Oct. 24 • Pasco County early voting, 7 a.m., Oct. 25-31 • Pre-teen monster face, 2 p.m., Oct. 25 • SCORE: Introduction to QuickBooks, 5 p.m., Oct. 28 The library is closed Sundays and Mondays, and is located at 2818 Collier Parkway. It can be reached at (813) 929-1214. Austin Davis Public Library • Toddler Time, 10:30 a.m., every Thursday • Storytime, 11 a.m., every Thursday • Tai Chi with Bonnie Birdsall, 6:15 p.m., every Monday • Baby Time, 11:30 a.m., every Tuesday • Block party, 3:30 p.m., Oct. 6 • Book discussion: “Where the Heart Is,” by Billie Letts, 1:30 p.m., Oct. 14 The library is located at 17808 Wayne Road in Odessa, and can be reached at (813) 2733652. Lutz Branch Library • Story Time, 11:30 a.m., Oct. 7, Oct. 21 and Oct. 28 • Baby Time, 10:15 a.m., every Thursday • Toddler Time, 11 a.m., every Thursday • Chair Yoga for All, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 1 • Microsoft Excel: Introduction, 2 p.m., Oct. 1
• Scrapbooking at The Depot, 10 a.m., Oct. 4 • Chess Do It at the Lutz Library, 1 p.m., Oct. 4 and Oct. 18 • Genealogy-Women in Genealogical Records, 12:15 p.m., Oct. 6 • Book discussion: “Songs of Willow Frost” by Jamie Ford, 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., Oct. 7 • Knitting at The Depot, 6 p.m., Oct. 7, Oct. 14, Oct. 21 and Oct. 28 • ABCs and 123s of Yoga, 11 a.m., Oct. 8 • Microsoft Excel: Formatting, 2 p.m., Oct. 8 • Tail Waggin’ Tutors, 2 p.m., Oct. 11 • Master Gardener: Mistaken Identities, 6:30 p.m., Oct. 13 • Puppet show: “The Ghost and the Lagoon,” 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Oct. 14 • Block party, 6:30 p.m., Oct. 20 • Jump, Jive and Jam, 10:15 a.m., Oct. 22 • Microsoft Excel: Basic Calculations, 2 p.m., Oct. 22 • Harvest Stories and Crafts, 3 p.m., Oct. 27 • Teen Advisory Board meeting, 6:30 p.m., Oct. 27 • Microsoft Excel: Advanced Calculations, 2 p.m., Oct. 29 The library is located at 101 W. Lutz Lake Fern Road, and can be reached at (813) 273-3652. The Jimmie B. Keel Regional Library • Baby Time, 10:15 a.m., and 11 a.m., every Tuesday • Toddler Time, 10:15 a.m., and 11 a.m., every Wednesday • Gallery at 2902 by Lynn Rattray, all day Oct. 2-31 • e-Books and e-Readers: An Introduction: 2 p.m., Oct. 2 and Oct. 16 • Teen Advisory Board, 6 p.m., Oct. 2 and Oct. 16 • Online photo editing, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 3 • Story Time, 10:15 a.m. and 4 p.m., every Monday • Tai Chi with Bonnie Birdsall, 1 p.m., every Monday • Family Center on Deafness telephone distribution, 10 a.m., Oct. 7 and Oct. 28 • English practice at the Conversation Center, 11 a.m., Oct. 7 and Oct. 14 • Zinio: Digital Magazines, 7 p.m., Oct. 8 • Senior Interest Group, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 8 • Universal class, 2 p.m., Oct. 9 • Teen movie night, 6 p.m., Oct. 9 • Block party, 6 p.m., Oct. 9 • Online shopping, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 10 • Master Gardener: Drought-Tolerant, Low-Maintenance Plants, 7 p.m., Oct. 14 • Learning Languages with Mango Languages, 7 p.m., Oct. 14 • Craiglist, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 17 • Computer and e-Book tutor, 2 p.m., Oct. 23 • eBay: Introduction, 10:30 a.m., Oct. 24 • Annual teen Halloween dance, 7 p.m., Oct. 25 • Zinio: Digital Magazines, 2 p.m., Oct. 30 The library is located at 2902 W. Bearss Ave., and can be reached at (813) 273-3652.
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CANCER SUPPORT GROUP
Florida Cancer Affiliates hosts a general cancer support group meeting every other Wednesday at the New Port Richey center, 5500 Little Road. The next meeting is Oct. 1 at 6 p.m. For information, call (727) 808-4818.
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The Medical Center of Trinity, 9330 State Road 54, is offering a class called “Heart Healthy Nutrition: Eating for Healthy Lifestyle” Oct. 2 at 10 a.m. Topics will include the concepts of heart healthy eating to control blood pressure, weight and to protect the heart. Participants will learn a dietary balance of fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy and lean protein, good and bad fats, controlling sodium intake, calorie balance, and the importance of dietary fiber. Seating is limited. For reservations, call (727) 834-5630.
CELIAC SUPPORT GROUP
Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point, 14000 Fivay Road in Hudson, hosts a monthly meeting of the West Pasco Celiac Support Group on the first Saturday of every month at 10 a.m. The next meeting is Oct. 4 and includes recipe demonstrations of a gluten-free diet. For information or to RSVP, call (727) 862-4815.
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Gulfside Hospice’s bereavement center will have a memorial service on Oct. 6 at 3 p.m. to honor and remember those who have passed away in the last year.The event will at St.Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, 8320 Old County Road 54 in New Port Richey. Refreshments will be served. For information, call (727) 844-3946.
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CARES and Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point will host “Lunch with a Doctor” at CARES Rao Musunuru M.D. Enrichment Center, 12417 Clock Tower Parkway in Hudson, Oct. 8 at noon. The guest speaker is Dr. Adam Grunbaum, rheumatologist. Admission is free, but registration is required. For information or to RSVP, call (727) 863-6868.
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October 1, 2014
The Medical Center of Trinity, 9330 State Road 54, hosts the Helping HANDS autism support group on the second Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. The next meeting is Oct. 8. The group is for parents, family members and friends impacted by autism and related neurological disorders. For information, call Jonica Chittum at (813) 402-9442, or send an email to jonica.chittum@HCAHealthcare.com.
NAMI HOSTS COMEDIAN
The National Alliance on Mental Illness Pasco will host an education and awards banquet Oct. 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Spartan Manor, 6121 Massachusetts Ave., in New Port Richey. Dress is business casual. Dinner is at 7 p.m. The keynote speaker is comedian Juanita Lolita, a finalist in Florida’s Funniest Comedian contest. For tickets and sponsorships, call (727) 992-9653, or download forms at NamiPasco.org. For information or to RSVP, call Nancy Whitener at (727) 375-5337.
OAK HILL OFFERS MAMMOGRAMS FOR UNINSURED Oak Hill Hospital, 11375 Cortez Blvd., in Brooksville, is offering digital mammography screenings for $60 to patients without health insurance. The screening includes the imaging and the radiologist’s reading. Patients do not need a script from a physician to schedule a screening. For information, or to schedule an appointment, call (800) 921-7158.
CAREGIVER’S SUPPORT GROUP
The Caregiver’s Support Group meets the first Wednesday of each month at the Land O’ Lakes Branch Library, 2818 Collier Parkway, to help those caring for loved ones afflicted with Alzheimer’s or dementia. This free group meets at 11 a.m. For information, call Phyllis Bross at (813) 996-1361, or send her an email at email@example.com.
CHILD’S HEALTH CARE GRANTS AVAILABLE
The UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation is seeking grant applications from families in need of financial assistance to help pay for their child’s health care treatments, services or equipment not covered — or not fully covered — by their commercial health insurance plan. Qualifying families can receive up to $5,000 per grant, with a lifetime maximum of $10,000 per child to help pay for medical services and equipment such as physical, occupational and speech therapy, counseling services, surgeries, prescriptions, wheelchairs, orthotics, eyeglasses and hearing aids. Children must be younger than 17, and families must meet economic guidelines, reside in the United States, and have a commercial health insurance plan. Grants are available for medical expenses families have incurred 60 days prior to the date of application, as well as for ongoing and future medical needs. Parents or legal guardians can apply for grants at UHCCF.org. There is no application deadline.
MINUTECLINIC NOW OPEN IN LUTZ
MinuteClinic has opened a new walk-in clinic inside the CVS store at 2322 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., in Lutz. The clinic is part of the company’s plan to add 150 new clinics nationwide in 2014. No appointments are required. Most health insurance is accepted. The clinic is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For information, visit MinuteClinic.com.
OLOR CANCER NETWORK
Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church Family Cancer Network meets the second and fourth Thursday of the month in Rosary Hall, 2348 Collier Parkway in Land O’ Lakes, beginning at 7 p.m. Cancer survivors and caregivers are invited to attend. For information, call (813) 949-4565.
LEARN TO BE A SHINE VOLUNTEER
Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders is a volunteer program of the Florida Department of Elder Affairs, and is in need of help. Volunteers offer free counseling and assistance to seniors and those with disabilities on topics related to Medicare, Medicaid, prescription drug assistance, supplemental insurance and more. Volunteers are needed in Pasco and Pinellas counties. A three-day training is provided. Costs for transportation are reimbursed and meals are furnished. For information, call Sue Samson at (727) 570-9696, Ext. 234. To fill out an online application, visit FloridaShine.org. —Health notes are run for free on a space-available basis. Please send all information at least two weeks before an event to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Pasco union leader seeks to unite, engage district workers By B.C. Manion email@example.com
Kenny Blankenship’s earliest recollections of union activity go back to his childhood, when his dad — a member of the United Steel Workers — would take him to the Tampa Theatre for annual holiday parties. Kids would leave the theater with bicycles, toys and other presents, Blankenship said. But he also recalls seeing his dad on the picket line. Those early images of union life aroused Blankenship’s desire to join a union when he got a chance, and that happened in 1997 when he became a teacher at Land O’ Lakes High School. Over the years, Blankenship’s involvement in the union grew, and in March, he was elected president of the United School Employees of Pasco. As its new leader, Blankenship is encouraging Pasco County Schools employees to become more involved in union activities. He also wants to build stronger relationships between the district’s instructional staff and non-instructional employees. “We want to work to strengthen our organization and the unity between the two units, because we’re not just a teachers’ union,” Blankenship said.“We’re wall-to-wall. We’re bus drivers, instructional assistants, secretaries, food service workers, the maintenance crews, custodians.” Many people view unions as organizations that protect the weakest link, but that isn’t true, Blankenship said. However, the union does make sure the employees it represents are given due process. “A lot of people don’t get that,” he said. “The union is there to protect your contractual rights, and to ensure that you get a fair shake.” The union lobbies to represent employees on important education issues. It negotiates wages and working conditions. It provides support for members needing help with classroom management, curriculum issues and working conditions, Blankenship said. The union advocates “for the best working conditions possible, because our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions,” Blankenship said. Along those lines, the union lodged a complaint in March with the Florida Public Employee Relations Commission over teacher planning time.The complaint alleges that teachers are spending so much time in meetings with their professional learning communities that it is usurping time intended for individual planning.
That issue remains unresolved. But in recent negotiations, the district has agreed to increase the protected planning time for teacher’s individual planning activities.That increased time, Blankenship said, “should provide some relief for our teachers.” Planning time is crucial for teachers to prepare for lessons, Blankenship said. It allows them to secure materials to support lessons that bring learning to life and help students gain understanding. Blankenship uses the analogy of a football game to help explain the importance of planning. “How much practice goes into preparing for a Friday night football game?” Blankenship asked. In the same way that coaches prepare for games, teachers must prepare to deliver quality instruction. While planning their lessons, teachers must consider the unique needs of every student in their classroom, Blankenship said. “You’ve got to think about, Johnny over here has dyslexia. MaryAnn has auditory processing issues. Somebody else has cognitive issues,” he said. “And then, Jose just moved in from Mexico and can’t speak a lick of English.” Teachers have to figure out how to reach those kids, while not overlooking students who are lagging behind, or making average progress or even excelling, Blankenship said. “That’s what goes into planning,” he said. Blankenship blames policy decisions by the Florida Legislature and budget cuts by Gov. Rick Scott for leaving public schools in a financial lurch. “Right now, funding is less per student than it was in 2007,” Blankenship said. Blankenship points to a move to “privatize public education” through charter schools and vouchers, which he said dilutes financial support for public education. “The fact is that the political climate in Tallahassee is pretty much anti-public schools and anti-union,” Blankenship said. Funding is so tight that teachers lack adequate supplies, Blankenship said. “That’s frustrating for teachers. I know that’s frustrating for students,” Blankenship said.“And, it’s frustrating for parents because they want their kids to succeed in the classroom.” The union wants to do what it can to help employees build on their professional strengths, Blankenship said. It also wants to help employees see the value of becoming a member. “We invest in our clothes. We invest in our vehicles. We invest in our homes,” Blankenship said.“Why wouldn’t we invest in our profession?”
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October 1, 2014
Community Sports Your Neighborhood Sports Source
FUN TO SPARE:
Special Olympics hosts county bowling competition By Michael Murillo firstname.lastname@example.org
If you wanted to do some bowling in Zephyrhills on Sept. 19, you probably had a long wait. Around 200 Special Olympics bowlers were knocking down pins, laughing and showing off hard-earned ribbons at Pin Chasers, 6816 N. Gall Blvd., in Wesley Chapel. Athletes from eight area middle and high schools packed the lanes in two sessions at the event, which was part of Special Olympics’ Fall Classic season. Gymnastics and softball also are part of the season, which begins with county games before moving to area competition and the state games in November. According to Judy Brunner, county coordinator for Special Olympics Florida, the athletes get excited about bowling day, which combines competition with socialization and fun. “They look forward to it for weeks and
Meeker was one of about 200 students to participate in the district portion of the bowling competition for East Pasco. In all, around 1,200 Special Olympics athletes participate in various sports in Pasco County.
weeks,” Brunner said.“They love being here, they love showing off their abilities.They especially love getting that ribbon to take home.” The event is good for family members as well, she said. Like little league or other organized sports activities for traditional students, parents come out to Special Olympics events to support their athletes, watch them perform, and see them interact in a social setting. Holland Meeker was one of those proud parents at the bowling alley. Her daughter, Maryanne, has learning and speech disabilities, and doesn’t usually enjoy social settings. But Special Olympics bowling was different, and she had been looking forward to the event. “Since (Maryanne) found out she was going to be participating, she was super excited,” Meeker said.“She’s enjoying herself greatly.” Her attitude was a welcome surprise for her grandmother, Pamela Stewart, who also came out to watch Maryanne bowl. “It’s great because she’s an introvert. Even if she’s at my house, she just sits there by herself,” she said. “Maryanne couldn’t wait to come.” Maryanne, an eighth-grader at Pine View Middle School, said she likes her classes and enjoys math in particular. But it can’t compare to her first bowling event with Special Olympics, where she stared down the pins instead of studying. “It’s fun,” she said.“I get to miss school.” Fun is what Special Olympics is all about, Brunner said. And in her 34 years with the organization, she’s seeing more people having fun over the years. When she first started, there was one season with just 250 athletes
MICHAEL MURILLO/STAFF PHOTOS
Pine View Middle School student Maryanne Meeker knocks down some pins at the Special Olympics bowling event Sept. 19, which was part of its Fall Classic schedule.
participating. Now there are different seasons and separate events for east and west Pasco participants. In all, around 1,200 students and adults participate in Special Olympics in Pasco County. Having that many participants means plenty of volunteers are needed to keep events running smoothly. At the bowling event, Zephyrhills High School students were on hand to help. Students from Land O’ Lakes High School helped with a similar event in west Pasco. Special Olympics benefits from having around 100 volunteers for the Fall Classic season, Brunner said, and they make a big difference to the organization.
PREP SPORTS BOARD CHECK
SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS
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7A-7 FOOTBALL STANDINGS Team W L T Freedom 4 1 0 Sickles 3 1 0 Gaither 3 2 0 Wiregrass Ranch 2 2 0 Steinbrenner 1 2 1 Tampa Bay Tech 1 3 0
PF 88 95 100 68 49 52
PA 42 58 82 90 53 108
6A-6 FOOTBALL STANDINGS Team W L T Sunlake 4 1 0 Mitchell 3 2 0 Springstead 3 2 0 Fivay 2 2 0 Land O’ Lakes 2 3 0
PF 115 117 56 125 137
PA 19 92 39 118 117
5A-7 FOOTBALL STANDINGS Team W L T River Ridge 4 1 0 Hudson 3 1 0 Gulf 2 2 0 Ridgewood 2 3 0 Wesley Chapel 0 4 0 Anclote 0 5 0
PF 122 130 106 93 56 48
PA 76 79 156 151 144 155
5A-6 FOOTBALL STANDINGS Team W L T South Sumter 5 0 0 Zephyrhills 4 1 0 Pasco 2 2 0 Nature Coast Tech 2 2 0 Hernando 1 2 0 Weeki Wachee 1 4 0 Central 1 4 0
PF 233 204 92 114 48 76 54
PA 16 95 74 70 74 158 168
WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 24 Volleyball Fivay 3, Land O’ Lakes 0 River Ridge 3, Pasco 0 Wiregrass Ranch 3, Zephyrhills 0 THURSDAY, SEPT. 25 Volleyball Weeki Wachee 3, Pasco 0 FRIDAY, SEPT. 26 Football Gulf 43, Land O’ Lakes 38 Nature Coast Tech 17, Pasco 14 Sunlake 28, Ridgewood 0 Freedom 10, Strawberry Crest 7 Zephyrhills 48, Weeki Wachee 6
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WEDNESDAY, OCT. 1 Volleyball Bishop McLaughlin at Pasco, 7 p.m. Wiregrass Ranch at Freedom, 7:30 p.m.
THURSDAY, OCT. 2 Football Freedom at Sickles, 7 p.m. Steinbrenner at Tampa Bay Tech, 7 p.m. Sunlake at Land O’ Lakes, 7:30 p.m. Wesley Chapel at Central, 7:30 p.m. Zephyrhills at Nature Coast Tech, 7:30 p.m. FRIDAY, OCT. 3 Football Gaither at Wiregrass Ranch, 7:30 p.m. Pasco at South Sumter, 7:30 p.m. Ridgewood at Wesley Chapel, 7:30 p.m. Sunlake at Mitchell, 7:30 p.m. MONDAY, OCT. 6 Volleyball Hudson at Wesley Chapel, 7:30 p.m. TUESDAY, OCT. 7 Volleyball Central at Zephyrhills, 7:30 p.m. Freedom at Sickles, 7:30 p.m. Gaither at Steinbrenner, 7:30 p.m. Land O’ Lakes at River Ridge, 7:30 p.m. Pasco at Hernando, 7:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, OCT. 8 Volleyball Fivay at Pasco, 7 p.m. Wiregrass Ranch at Ridgewood, 7:30 p.m. Zephyrhills at Gulf, 7:30 p.m. THURSDAY, OCT. 9 Volleyball Wesley Chapel at Pasco, 7 p.m. Sickles at Wiregrass Ranch, 7:30 p.m. Steinbrenner at Freedom, 7:30 p.m. Zephyrhills at Weeki Wachee, 7:30 p.m. FRIDAY, OCT. 10 Football Land O’ Lakes at Hudson, 7:30 p.m. Nature Coast Tech at Zephyrhills, 7:30 p.m. Steinbrenner at Wharton, 7:30 p.m. Sunlake at Wesley Chapel, 7:30 p.m. Weeki Wachee at Pasco, 7:30 p.m. Wiregrass Ranch at Ridgewood, 7:30 p.m.
Source: MaxPreps.com, various
SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS SEND SPORTS NEWS TO MMURILLO@LAKERLUTZNEWS.COM
RUN/WALK FOR LUNG CANCER RESEARCH
Free to Breathe, a nonprofit lung cancer research and advocacy organization, will hold a 5-kilometer run/walk on Oct. 5 at Al Lopez Park, 4810 N. Himes Ave. The event includes an additional 1-mile walk, with prizes for top fundraisers and fundraising teams. Registration begins at 7 a.m. with the 5k run beginning at 8:30. The cost is $30. For information, visit FreeToBreathe.org.
LADIES GOLF TOURNAMENT
The Links of Lake Bernadette, 5430 Links Lane in Zephyrhills, is hosting its ninth annual Ladies 18 Hole 2 Person Team Golf Tournament on Oct. 19. The nine-hole scramble/nine-hole alternate shot event begins at noon.The cost is $30 per player, and includes golf, cart, dinner and prizes. For information, call (813) 788-7888 or (813) 843-8633, or visit LinksOfLakeBernadette.com.
T-SHIRTS SUPPORT CROSS-COUNTRY COACH
“I Run For Keppel”T-shirts are available to help support Land O’ Lakes High School cross-country coach Kris Keppel, who is battling pancreatic cancer. The shirts are $15 each, with all proceeds going to Keppel. For information or to make a donation, call (813) 406-5730, or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SPORT ACTIVITIES AVAILABLE FOR SENIORS
Senior Sports is seeking players older than 60 for a number of regular co-ed sporting events, including Slo-Pitch softball for fall and winter competition. Senior Sports has participants who play golf every Wednesday and bowling every Thursday. It also has added tennis and indoor volleyball. For more information, call Walt Bockmiller at (813) 527-8211.
“We couldn’t do it without the volunteers,” she said.“They’re crucial, and they’re so good with our athletes.They give them a lot of extra attention and a lot of kudos, and make them feel good about themselves.” Brunner also credited the Pasco County school system with handling transportation and letting them organize events on school days, which increases participation. The result is full lanes, a lot of smiles, and a desire to continue participating in Special Olympics. Even for athletes like Maryanne, who don’t normally look forward to social events and interacting with new people, it’s something fun to mark on the calendar. “She’s already looking forward to the next one,” Stewart said.
GIRLS SOFTBALL REGISTRATION OPEN Lutz Leaguerettes, a slow-pitch softball league for girls ages 6-18, is now accepting registrations for its spring schedule. They play at the Oscar Cooler Sports Complex, 766 Lutz Lake Fern Road. The fee is $150 through Oct. 1, then $160 through Oct. 12, and $180 through Dec. 1. For information, visit LutzSoftball.com.
SOCCER LEAGUE REGISTRATION NOW OPEN
The Greater Tampa Bay Football Club is now accepting registrations for its fall and winter soccer league. The league is open to boys and girls in north Hillsborough and Pasco counties from ages 5-19. Each team will have one practice day per week, and a game on Saturdays. Practices and games will be at the Land O’ Lakes Recreation Complex, 3032 Collier Parkway. To register, visit GTBFC.com. For information, call Frank Coorey at (727) 423-8886, or e-mail email@example.com.
HIKE FOR HOSPICE IN NOVEMBER
Gulfside Hospice will have its eighth annual Hike For Hospice on Nov. 16 at Rasmussen College, 18600 Fernview St., in Land O’ Lakes. The event includes a 5-kilometer run and walk. Registration is $25 for adults, $15 for students, and $10 for children younger than 11. The cost includes a T-shirt, breakfast and beverages. To register or to receive sponsorship information, call (800) 561-4883. Registration also is accepted at FristGiving.com/GulfsideHospice.
SOCCER ACADEMY FROM GRACE COMMUNITY
Grace Soccer Club will host its 3v3 Academy for children in first through sixth grade. The program is designed to strengthen soccer skills, sportsmanship and faith. The cost for the six-program session is $25. They will be on Wednesday nights Oct. 1, Oct. 8 and Oct. 15 at the church’s property on Boyette Road. For information, call (813) 994-9363, visit ExploreGrace.com, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coupon clippers and clickers always welcome. publix.com/coupons
October 1, 2014
The LAKER /Lutz NEWS INSIDE: Directories, Classifieds, Games & More
O C TO B E R 1 , 2 0 1 4
Amber Folsom of Rushe Middle School shows off a book she wrote and illustrated to kindergartners in Laura Sprague’s class at Oakstead Elementary School.
Using ART to inspire By B.C. Manion email@example.com
Aubree Southard, 5, is mesmerized by 13-year-old Kailyn Evans’ book, ‘How to Handle Trash.’ Evans is a student in Jeanne St. John’s art class at Rushe Middle School.
Rushe Middle School art student Subin Lee shares her book about different types of animal habitats with Malachi Hairston, 5, and other children in Julia Bazin’s kindergarten class at Oakstead Elementary School.
When Rushe Middle School teacher Jeanne St. John was looking for a way to inspire students in her art class, she decided to have them create their own zigzag accordion books for children. To make the project even more fun and relevant, she reached out to Oakstead Elementary School to see if her students could visit some kindergarten classrooms to read their stories and show off their artwork. Oakstead agreed, and the result was a bunch of happy kids, St. John said. The seventh- and eighth-graders got a kick out of sharing their original
works to a receptive audience. One Rushe student created a book featuring farm animals, St. John said. Kindergartners responded by mooing and making other animals sounds. St. John, a former media specialist, said she understands the importance of reading. She also knows that research shows that reading aloud helps children develop their early literacy skills. She also wanted to inspire her students to use their imagination by challenging them to write original stories and illustrate them with characters they created. The visit was such a hit that Oakstead invited Rushe to make another visit in the future, St. John said.
Sara Fukutani, shows off her book to Malachi Hairston, left, Jerah Samuel and Saunder Morchen during a field trip from Rushe Middle School to Oakstead Elementary School. Art teacher Jeanne St. John had her students create books they could read to the kindergarteners. Besides inspiring her students to be creative, the project was intended to get children excited by reading.
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• H A I R • N A I L S • M A S S A G E • FA C I A L S • F U L L B O DY W A X I N G • S PA PA C K A G E S • H A I R E X T E N S I O N S • K E R AT I N • J A N E I R E D A L E M A K E - U P A N D D E R M A L O G I C A S K I N C A R E
Exotic pets looking for homes, too, through amnesty program The Laker/Lutz News Staff Report
Ever wanted to replace the traditional dog or cat, with a blue-tongued skink, or a green anaconda? The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is looking for qualified people willing to adopt exotic pets through its Exotic Pet Amnesty Program. These pets need new homes because owners who can no longer care for them have surrendered them to the state. New owners will need to understand the costs associated with taking care of such an animal, as well as the natural history, care and safe caging requirements for the pets. “It’s a great way to help prevent the release of non-natives, while providing these pets a home where they will be properly cared for and safely caged,” said Liz Barraco, coordinator of the amnesty program, in a release. Without the amnesty program, many of these animals would be released into the wild.And because they are not part of the existing natural food chain, they could disrupt habitats, and even pose a danger to people. The application process to adopt is done in two parts — the first will help someone become an approved adopter, while the second identifies that person’s experience and knowledge regarding a specific type of exotic pet.
“People considering taking one of these animals home need to think about the level of responsibility and long-term commitment involved,” Barraco said. “Many exotic pets live for a long time, and some get quite big.” The amnesty days allow current exotic pet owners to bring in their animals without a fee or penalty. Those wanting to adopt don’t have to pay a fee, either, but they would need to be pre-qualified before attending one of three upcoming events around the state. The first is Oct. 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Dreher Park Garden Club, 4800 Dreher Trail North, in West Palm Beach. The second is Nov. 15 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at North Collier Regional Park, 15000 Livingston Road, in Naples. The third is April 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Wickham Park Pavilion, 3845 N. Wickham Road, in Melbourne. Veterinarians examine each surrendered pet, and every attempt is made to place healthy animals with qualified adopters, officials said. Also, live animals will be on display at the events, which are open to the public, and experts will be available to talk to people about proper care of the pets. Those who can’t attend an amnesty event, but would like to join the ongoing registry to become a potential new owner of an exotic pet, can visit MyFWC.com/Nonnatives to learn more about the program, and how to become an exotic pet owner.
Looking for the perfect home Ichigo, 3, is very friendly. She gets along with kitties, and would really like to find a place to call home. She doesn’t like being at PetSmart, so she doesn’t get the exposure that the kittens do. If you or someone you know would love to give this good-looking girl a home, please let the Cat Crusaders know.
If you would like to invite Ichigo into your family, email Cat Crusaders at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about other adoptable cats, visit TampaCatCrusaders.org/animals/list.
SPAY & NEUTER CLINIC: Call for appointment: Subject to $3 medical, infectious & records fee.
Cat Neuter: Dog Neuter: up to 11 lbs 12 - 33 lbs 34 - 66 lbs 67 - 88 lbs 89 - 132 lbs
(813) 949-4416 21515 VILLAGE LAKES SHOPPING CENTER
$35 $45 $50 $60 $75 $90
(Includes pre-anesthetic exam, anesthesia, pain & antibiotic pre-medication). • Dogs & cats must be healthy and current on vaccines & at least 3 months old but not more than 5 years old. • Dogs should be at least 5 lbs. • Cats, 3 lbs. • Pets must not be pregnant & should be healthy.
(next to Beef O’ Brady’s in old Wal-Mart Plaza) MONDAY-FRIDAY 8 AM - 6 PM SATURDAY 8 AM - 12 NOON CLOSED SUNDAY
Cat Spay: Dog Spay: up to 11 lbs 12 - 22 lbs 23 - 44 lbs 45 - 66 lbs 67 - 88 lbs 89 - 132 lbs
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In Office: Monday-Friday 1 - 2 pm 21515 VILLAGE LAKES SHOPPING CENTER
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Sat., October 25th • 1 to 2 pm PET CITY 2119 Collier Pkwy • LAND O’ LAKES
• 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 Like us on facebook.com/gentlecarepethospital
Penelope is a 2-year-old boxer/terrier mix. She is a sweet girl who seems to play well with other dogs. If you would like to come out and meet Penelope, she will be waiting for you at the Pasco County Animal Services shelter.
To adopt Penelope or pets like her, visit Pasco County Animal Services at 19640 Dogpatch Lane in Land O’ Lakes. For more information, email email@example.com.
• Veterinarians • Grooming • Breeding • Training • Supplies • Pet Sitters • Pets 4 Sale
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The LAKER • Lutz News
U Dirty Dog
h t 0 3 ! BIRTHDAY
AKES L ’ O D N A L PITAL S O H L A ANIM sands all the thou r , Dr. Farr, fo ealthier. THANK YOU and made h d e v sa e v a h u all these of lives yo ing animals lp e h to n o ti ated! Your dedica atly appreci years is gre
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The LAKER / Lutz NEWS
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EDUCATION & ACTIVITIES DIRECTORY WORKS FOR US! “Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo has worked with Community News Publications for years to promote special events, new exhibits/attractions and our summer camps. We find that advertising to their loyal family readership in the Land O’ Lakes and Lutz area to be a valuable part of our marketing mix.”
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THE LAKER/LUTZ NEWS WINS NATIONAL AD AWARD
An advertisement featuring some happy feet and encouraging readers to keep “a step ahead” was honored by a national contest featuring three newspaper industry groups. The ad, from Family Foot & Ankle Care, won second place in Small Space Ad-Black Ink Only, at the 2014 Advertising and Editorial Awards from the Southeastern Advertising Publishers Association, Community Papers of Florida, and Independent Free Papers of America. Family Foot & Ankle Care is represented at the paper by Terri Williamson, and the ad was created by Stefanie Burlingame and Carolyn Bennett. The annual SAPA-IPF-CPF conference took place in Orlando this year, and the competition itself received more than 1,400 entries, organizers said.
GRAND OPENING FOR FLOWERS BY VIKTORIYA
Flowers by Viktoriya will host a grand opening Oct. 3 at 9 a.m., at its new location, 5132 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., Suite 105. The new store will offer silk flowers, cut flowers, plants, roses, vases and various arrangements.
WESLEY CHAPEL CHAMBER HANDS OUT AWARDS
The Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce honored its top businesses and leaders during its annual banquet recently at Saddlebrook Resort in Wesley Chapel. The awards, according to chamber offi-
cials, acknowledge the accomplishments of small businesses, large businesses, volunteers, civic organizations, and business leaders, for the contributions they make to the regional economy. The business awards were reviewed and scored by a panel of peers based on their demonstrated commitment to the advancement of the business community. Winners included Stanley Giannet of Pasco-Hernando State College as Business Leader of the Year, Parks Ford of Wesley Chapel as Large Business of the Year, the New Tampa/Wesley Chapel Neighborhood News as Small Business of the Year, and American Cancer Society as Civic Group of the Year, and Kelly Mothershead of A Focus on Fitness as Volunteer of the Year. In addition to those awards, Wendy Bechtelheimer was presented the president’s award for her contribution to the organization, while Jeff Novotny of American Consulting Engineers was named the board member of the year.
OCTOBER MEETING FOR WOMEN-N-CHARGE
Women-n-Charge will meet Oct. 3 at 11:30 a.m., at Pebble Creek Country Club, 10550 Regents Park Drive in Tampa. Cost is $15 for members, and $18 for guests. It includes lunch, and speaker Rena Romano, a certified leadership coach. For information, visit Women-nCharge.com, or call (813) 600-9848.
COMMISSION APPLAUDS CVS FOR TOBACCO STANCE
The Pasco County Commission publicly commended drugstore chain CVS Health recently for removing tobacco products from its stores around the country. In a resolution, the commission cited a January surgeon general’s report that said smoking kills 480,000 people annually, and sickens millions more. It also costs the nation more than $289 billion in health care expenses and economic costs each year. CVS had announced earlier this year it would remove tobacco products from its stores, but then decided to do it a month earlier than planned. That move, commis-
Condos dropped a little more than 1.5 percent to 1,170 units, while the median price there jumped more than 15 percent to $115,000, compared to 2013. Statewide, single-family home sales are up 4.2 percent, while the median price rose 3.4 percent. Short sales in the single-family home market dropped more than 49 percent from last year. Closed sales typically are occurring 30 to 90 days after sales contracts are written, according to the group. Inventory was at a 5.5-month supply in August, while condos were at a 5.7-month supply.The interest rate for a 30-year fixedrate mortgage averaged 4.12 percent in August, according to Freddie Mac, down from the 4.46 percent average recorded a year ago.
COURTESY OF MICHELLE KARPOICH
Grand opening in style
GRAND OPENING FOR PULTE AT COUNTRY WALK
Kalista Sprague, left, along with Lilly Boudin and Kate Boudin of Land O’ Lakes show off some of their face painting creations at the grand opening celebration for ME Hobbies. The store is located at 1904 Oak Grove Blvd., in Lutz. To learn more about the store, visit MEHobbies.com.
sioners said, represents the “bold action needed from all segments of our society to accelerate progress against tobacco, and make the next generation tobacco-free.” CVS operates more than 7,700 stores, including 11 in The Laker/Lutz News readership area east of the Suncoast Parkway.
FAMILIES RETURNING TO HOME MARKET, REALTORS SAY
Single-family homes remain on the rise for the greater Tampa Bay area, while sales of townhouses and condominiums continue to slip. Just under 3,600 homes sold in the region that includes Pasco County last month, according to Florida Realtors, up nearly 4 percent from a year ago.That’s despite the median sales price staying the same at $160,000.
Pulte Homes hosted a grand opening recently for its new single-family homes in Country Walk, located off Meadow Pointe Boulevard south of State Road 54 in Wesley Chapel. Pulte plans to build 32 three- and fourbedroom houses in the community, ranging in size from 1,827 to 2,443 square feet, according to north Florida regional vice president Sean Strickler. Prices will start at $220,000. For information on the community, call (866) 230-3599.
HART OFFERS TEXT-BASED BUS UPDATES
Hillsborough Area Regional Transit, or HART, has launched a text message service to complement its app, OneBusAway. The new feature will provide transit customers real-time bus arrival information via text message.This will provide some of the functionality of the OneBusAway app for riders who don’t have smartphones. Those who wish to use it simply need to text “HART” and their bus stop number to 41411 to get back estimated arrival times. For example, someone wanting arrival information for stop 4804 would text “HART 4804” to 41411.
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WONDERING HOW TO PAY OFF ALL THOSE BILLS? We are looking for men and women to deliver free community newspapers in Lutz, Land o’ Lakes, Wesley Chapel and Zephyrhills. Applicant must be available Tuesday afternoons and Wednesdays. Experience is preferred. A clean driving record, current insurance and a van, SUV, pick-up truck or large car are required. Please visit us at sunsetadvertisingdistributors.com or call 727-530-5521.
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TheLaker / LutzNews Classifieds
813-909-2800 • email@example.com
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Land O’ Lakes
3948 Lake Padgett Dr. Land O’ Lakes, FL 34639
The EASY READ. FAST RESULTS.
CALL CLASSIFIEDS 813-909-2800
MANY OTHER LISTINGS AVAILABLE VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT www.cbflahomes.com see virtual tours
Searching for a better job or a more reliable car? Outgrown your apartment? Whether you’re buying or selling, the Classifieds has it all. Put the Classifieds to work for you, and inch even closer to your goals.
TheLaker / LutzNews
5806 Old Pasco Rd. Wesley Chapel, FL 33543
COPPERSTONE E S XECUTIVE
AWARD WINNING BUSINESS CENTER HERITAGE HARBOR 7BR/4BA/3CG Bank Owned - Sold "AS IS" 5,608 sq ft $636,000. Call Lou Molnar 813-484-5211
LAND O'LAKES 4BR/2BA/3CG formal areas, huge fam,room, Comm. Pool & more $224,900. Call Karen Hernandez 918-5765
LUTZ - END UNIT VILLA in popular Lake Heron 3br/2ba/1cg $130,000. Call Karen Hernandez 918-5765
EQUESTRIAN COMMUNITY 8.62 ac. in Winding Creek Est. US41 north of SR52 $99.900. Call James Rodriguez 362-2901
FOR NO COST MARKET EVALUATION CALL 996-4747
• Award Winning Service • 50 Private Office Suites • 2 Conference Rooms • Event Room • Hourly Office Rental • Business Address • Mail Service • WiFi
3BR/2BA/2CG in LK.PADGETT on canal to East Lake plus stables & tennis $235,000. Call Karen Hernandez 918-5765
ADVANTAGE TEAM REALTY
Vide ncing Confere es! Servic
An Independently Owned and Operated Member of Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corporation
FOR LEASE Tropical Village 1532 Land O’ Lakes Blvd. Across from WalMart on U.S. 41
LOUIS MOLNAR. Broker
3632 Land O’ Lakes Boulevard • Land O’ Lakes, FL 34639 Centrally located between Wesley Chapel and Trinity
front building, open floorplan immediate occupancy next to dentist, move-in ready
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GEORGIA GEORGIA LAND SALE - 197 ACRES $1,150/AC. Hardwood drain, planted pine, 3 paved roads. Other tracts available. treesandfarms.com 478-224-0459 William Long Agency (z)
NORTH/SOUTH CAROLINA NC MTNS NEAR Asheville. Owner must sell new log cabin on 1.5ac. Huge porches, vaulted ceiling, 1200sf ready to finish. $74,900, add’l acreage avail. 828-286-2981 (x) NORTH CAROLINA- BRYSON CITY. 2.64 acre mountain residential lot. Spectacular view, 3600ft. altitude. Easily accessible. NO INTEREST OWNER FINANCING! 10% down.$45,000. Call owner 352-232-6959 www.wildcatknob.com (z)
KAY KIM REYES
Busy plaza • Great Parking • No CAMs Owned and Managed by Houghton-Wagman Partnership, Ltd.
Contact Kimberly Stinson 727-822-7212 • firstname.lastname@example.org
HOME FOR SALE?
ADVERTISE with The
Laker/ Lutz News
3135 State Road 580 Suite 11 Safety Harbor, Florida 34695
October 1, 2014
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October 1, 2014
Lutz downtown now on fast track; Good Grief! New Tampa Players prepare Charlie Brown musical; Baseball complex could bring sport's biggest n...
Published on Oct 1, 2014
Lutz downtown now on fast track; Good Grief! New Tampa Players prepare Charlie Brown musical; Baseball complex could bring sport's biggest n...