The News of
OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE SUN CITY CENTER COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION
Sun City Center
SCC Celebrates 60 Years
DECEMBER 1 Membership Vote Community Hall – 9 am to 5 pm 8 Board Meeting Rollins Theater – 9 a.m. Zoom ID: 827 8258 0763 Passcode: 441026 24 CA Office & Library Closed Facilities Close at 1 p.m. 25 CA Office & Library Closed All Facilities Closed 31 CA Office & Library Closed Facilities Close at 1 p.m. JANUARY 1 CA Office & Library Closed All Facilities Closed 3 Board Workshop Rollins Theater - 9 a.m. Zoom ID: 847 6996 6672 Passcode: 650937 5 Annual Membership Meeting Community Hall – 3 p.m. Zoom ID: 899 8809 5586 Passcode: 824217 Agendas for the monthly Board Meetings will be posted on the Official Bulletin Board in the Atrium the Friday before and on the CA website (www.suncitycenter.org – under “Residents” – Upcoming Meeting Agendas). They will also be sent via “What’s New in the CA” email.
By Kai Rambow Sun City Center recently celebrated its 60th anniversary. The event, spread out over a Sunday afternoon, had the added bonus of reuniting people. “It’s been almost two years since we saw you,” was a frequent comment. The History Society displayed key events and photographs for people to view before entering Community Hall. Most people took their time to review the history of our community. Before entering the hall, cupcakes, ice cream, and coffee were available. Many enjoyed their treats while sitting with neighbors and friends. People were glad to be out and reconnect with others. A slide show played in the background and copies of the 60th anniversary book were available for purchase. A continual stream of people enjoyed the occasion.
Delicious cupcakes, ice cream and coffee were celebratory snacks.
Taking advantage of an opportunity to have a fun picture taken with a “flower power” VW van.
CA Contact Information Administration Office 1009 N. Pebble Beach Blvd, SCC Phone: 813.633.3500 Hours – 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., M-F firstname.lastname@example.org Website: suncitycenter.org Information Center: 813.633.4670
Larry Smith enthusing about the Sixty Years in Sun City Center, Florida book.
Residents had an opportunity to see a quick snapshot of Sun City Center’s development over the years thanks to the History Society.
Celebrate The Opening Of SCC A Special Invitation From The History Society, Thursday, December 30, 2021
Meet The Candidates
Cars line up to tour “Sun City” on opening day, December 30, 1961.
By Ilona Merritt “Time flies when you’re having fun” … It seems like just yesterday that SCC celebrated our 50th anniversary. And what fun we had! Now, ten years later, we are celebrating another milestone. Sixty
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years in Sun City Center. The History Society invites our neighbors to help us celebrate the anniversary of the opening of Sun City, which falls on December 30. Join us at Community Hall on December 30 from 2 to 4 p.m. Unique entertainment is planned, and a delicious dessert table will be open. There is no charge for this event, but seating is limited to 300 people. You must have a ticket, and they will be available on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays starting December 13 from 10 to noon at the Atrium kiosk. You must bring your CA Card. Only two tickets are available per person.
By Paula Lickfeldt On November 10, the six candidates who are running for the three positions on the CA board each had a chance to explain, in person, why they wanted to be on the CA board. The candidates were on stage from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. The evening started with each candidate having three minutes to introduce himself and talk about why he wanted to be on the board and what he hoped to accomplish. Moderator Vern Hendricks had a box filled with questions from which he drew a question. Each candidate had two minutes to give their answer to the question and then Vern drew another question. At 5, each candidate went to an individual table and the members of the SCCCA had a chance to talk privately with them and ask their questions. I asked several people why they had come to the meeting and what they hoped to learn. Here are some of the responses: Joanne Moore said, “I don’t know all of the candidates. I liked the write up in the paper, and I wanted to hear more. I am interested in learning if their views coincide with mine about the betterment of our community.” Joanne Baskinger said, “I want to hear how each of the candidates is going to improve our community, like fix our roads. I am not familiar with three of
the candidates, and I want to hear what they have to say.” Stephen and Mara Attles said, “We are looking for people who are truly interested in our community. We want to hear what comes from their heart. We are looking for someone who says what they believe and not what they think we want to hear.” Shelba Fields said, “I know three of the candidates, and I do not know three. I want to know what each of them stands for. I have been a resident of SCC for 22 years, and I always participate in the CA meetings. I have seen a lot of changes. I want to elect the people who will do the best for our community.” Darlene Dannels said, “I came to find out where each of the candidates stand on the issues and what direction they want our community to go.” Betty and John Mitchell said, “New buildings cost a lot of money, and we want to know where the money is going to come from. We also want to know where the new buildings will be located. We are interested in how each of the candidates will communicate with the residents. We love SCC, and we want it to be fresh and new, but we don’t want improvements to price us out.” The evening was very well run, and I know the attendees had a chance to hear what each candidate felt they could do for the residents of our community.
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The News of Sun City Center
Tidbits From the Vault It Was a Grand Opening
Potters Wheel Elects New Board Members
The Potters Wheel Club elected new officers during an annual business meeting held November 12 in the Caper Room. The new officers are President Mary Schroeder, Vice President Sue Bahl, Treasurer Debbie Whittle, Secretary Carol Blecher and Past President Sandy Yavorcik.
By Cathy Meyerhoff, Sun City Center History Society As the date for the grand opening of Del Webb’s Sun City, Florida, approached one of the company’s salesmen worried that no one would show up. He need not have worried. On December 30, 1961, state police were overwhelmed as both US-41 and US-301 were backed up for miles. SR-674, a two-lane road was also jammed with traffic. December 30 fell on a Saturday in 1961, and people were curious to see Florida’s first community planned for seniors. The new development had sprung up in less than eight months in the middle of an area that had previously been ranch land covered with pastures, wiregrass and pine trees. The town was unusual in several ways. When opening day arrived a business plaza was already operational. It included a Pic and Pay drugstore, a Kwik Chek grocery and the Eagle 5 & 10. No one was yet living in the town, but the businesses were fully operational thanks to free rent for the first year and a reduced rental rate after that. Model homes lined both sides of Cherry Hills Drive. A town hall centered the new development and the availability of recreational activities was obvious with a golf course, an arts and crafts building and a swimming pool. Even a hotel and restaurant, the Kings Inn, had been constructed in November 1961 using the same architectural plans used in Sun City, Arizona. Visitors were entertained by ski boats on Swan Lake (then known as Bass Lake) and the Tampa water ski club performed for several thousand people. A beach
and fishing pier were also attractive amenities on the lake. December 30 was the start of a successful grand opening. There were over 41,000 visitors over the first nine days. Del Webb’s Sun City was up and running.
SCCCA ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING JANUARY 5, 2022 COMMUNITY HALL 3:00 PM
200 SCCCA members required for a Quorum CA Membership Cards are required for admittance Also via Zoom: ID: 899 8809 5586 Passcode: 824217
- AGENDA -
I. Call to Order/Pledge of Allegiance II. Approval of Minutes: January 2, 2020, April 28, 2020 and July 20, 2021 III. Treasurer’s Report IV. Community Manager’s Report V. Installation of newly-elected Directors VI. President’s Report VII. General Discussion by Members VIII. Adjournment
Two phases of the shortleaf rose-gentian flower: male top and female below.
Trail Blazing By John Lampkin
The Shortleaf Rose-gentians on the SCC Nature Trails have perfect flowers. Although indeed they are beautiful, that isn’t a value judgment! “Perfect” in botany means that both male and female organs appear in a single flower. In general, long-term survival of a species depends on a robust gene pool, and plants have evolved various strategies to avoid self-pollination. Our Rose-gentians use a clever technique to promote sexual encounters with the neighbors away down the path a bit. The male anthers are blade-like and mature first, producing copious amounts of pollen luring visiting pollinators while the female stigma stays tightly coiled, looking much like a unicorn horn (top image). After the male organs are depleted, they wither and drop off while the female organ literally springs open, exposing the forked corkscrewed sticky stigma to a second wave of floral visitors (bottom image). The photos are of two different flowers shot after heavy rain, hence the water droplets. Rain or shine, the staggered male-female maturity guarantees cross-pollination, thus ensuring a rich and healthy genetic heritage. A perfect plan for a perfect flower! Find Shortleaf Rose-gentians on the SCC Nature Trails! The trailhead is located opposite North Lake on Del Webb West between Vincennes and Seton Hall. John Lampkin leads wooded walks on the first Tuesday of each month at 9 a.m. or by appointment.
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Statement of Purpose
The Sun City Center Community Association serves the residents of Sun City Center by providing assistance for the elderly, assistance and essential services to tax exempt entities, and operates in lieu of a municipal government, thereby lessening the burdens of government (Hillsborough County, Florida).
CLUB/ORGANIZATION Sew’n’Sews Club Woman’s Club Needlecrafters Club Cat Lovers Club DAR Shellcrafters Club Ceramics Club Sew’n’Sews Club China Painters Club Stained Club Club Scrapbooking Club
AMOUNT $2,285 $25 $50 $40 $13 $127 $100 $215 $25 $108 $40
APPLIED TO Sidewalk Extension SCC Library Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest Fallfest
List prepared from CA staff data. Report corrections, additions to CA at 633-3500. 10/19 thru 11/15, 2021
Local Adress 2004 Berry Roberts Drive 1615 Brookton Green Drive 1310 Cherry Hills Drive 727 Chipper Drive 2017 Del Webb Blvd. E. 2238 Del Webb Blvd., W. 710 Desert Hills Way 1010 El Rancho Drive 1807 El Rancho Drive 2367 Emerald Lake Drive 323 Faircross Circle 710 Fox Hills Drive 1932 Grand Cypress Lane 1124 Jasmine Creek Court 404 LaJolla Avenue 312 Linger Lane 1345 New Bedford Drive 641 Oakmont Avenue 726 Ojai Avenue 1803 Orchid Court 1509 Pebble Beach Blvd., N. 1618 Pebble Beach Blvd., N. 1929 Pebble Beach Blvd., S. 2233 Pebble Beach Blvd., S. 714 Plumbrook Road 825 Regal Manor Way 906 Regal Manor Way 1015 Rickenbacker Drive 112 Silverbell Court 1702 Tahoe Drive 732 Tam O'Shanter Avenue 1618 Woodmar Drive
Name Hometown State/Country Phone Michael Overstreet Lynchburg VA 434-426-3032 Dian Dingle 717-756-4756 Jan Neeb Sun City Center FL 614-598-1200 Joey & Angela McCall Pisgah Forest NC 828-553-1201 Michael & Cherie King Kansas City MO 913-239-8320 Robert Bowen Legrangeville NY 845-705-8863 John & Judy Peraino Hamilton NJ 609-433-2671 Judy Pritchett Milwaukee WI 813-260-3289 Mary Ingwalson La Plata MD 240-320-2147 Robert & Nancy Ingwalson 240-300-0048 Jeffrey Oligny Lowell MA 603-339-2626 Dawn & Lisa Wagner-Medina Jackson MI 517-795-8620 Terri Dawson Ventura CA 813-938-5714 Vaughn Funk Glenn Vandehei Appleton WI 608-279-6055 Deborah Vandehei 608-279-6955 Irwin & Mary Heitner Lilburn GA 404-578-9715 Leslie Aiken 404-431-8330 Richard Aiken Lafayette LA 678-557-2619 Randy Early OH 614-205-3833 Kaye Smith Stanley & Patricia Prisbe Shelby Township MI 702-767-5547 James Leveesque Los Angeles CA 813-531-2051 Michael & Cynthis Musto Tampa FL 813-924-0168 David & Sally Lamp New Glarus WI 608-347-0461 Stephen Williams Tampa FL 813-521-4996 Nancy Wolf Cape Cod MA 508-776-4044 Judith Eastland Bay City MI 989-996-0182 Mark Boyer Highland MI 248-778-8649 Peter & Joan Zegras 203-913-3827 Robert Desisto Manchester NH 603-396-3409 Jackelyn Culp Traverse City MI 813-893-1677 William & Dianne Miller Sun City FL 348-568-7342 Ernesto Colon Omaha NE 402-541-8633 Ike & Mary Hoekwater Grand Haven MI 231-629-2907 Anthony Montesano Syracuse NY 813-580-1087 Joseph & Kitty Montesano Thomas & Maria Tomlinson La Porte IN 813-491-4002 Rick & Maria Larson Homer Glen IL 813-938-3377
Bob Sullivan, SCCCA President The Sun City Center Board of Directors hopes that everyone had a safe and happy Thanksgiving. As we move into December and the holiday season, we ask that everyone take the time to look back to last year when we were unable to visit or be close to family and friends. Most feel able to return to times past and enjoy the festive season. Please continue to be safe. As you read this article, the recent vote for three directors has concluded, and we look forward to the new board members as we start 2022. We will be conducting new Long Range Plan surveys and community meetings to decide on future developments in our community. We ask that everyone get involved. Make sure you give your input when surveys and community meetings occur. If you are not on the “Blast” (SCCCA information sharing email), stop by the office or go online to www. suncitycenter.org to sign up. We are also working on Becker Ballot online voting for future votes within the SCC Community Association. This will make it easier for anyone who is not in town during a specific vote. The online ballot is being tested and coming very close to being ready for 2022 voting. We, your Board of Directors, thank you for allowing us to support this community this past year, and we wish Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to one and all.
The News of Sun City Center
What a Volunteer Looks Like
By Andrea L.T. Peterson Although he was most often seen wearing a cap commemorating his time in service to the U.S. Navy, South Lake resident Robert (Bob) Bizzano— devoted husband of nearly 50 years to Kathy, and father to son, Jeremy—wore many hats. The Bizzanos moved to Sun City Center’s South Lake in December 2000, and shortly after were recruited as volunteers in many South Lake and Sun City Center activities. A man of few words, but considerable action, Bob was volunteerism personified. Both Bizzanos served on the South Lake Board of Directors for six years as members-at-large. Bob was also Assistant Lake Chief helping maintain a healthy lake and keeping it stocked with fish. No sooner had they moved in than they were recruited as volunteers with the SCC Security Patrol (Team 5) where they initially drove together and where Bob eventually became Team Captain for Team 26. He served in that capacity for a number of years. As a reliable and capable volunteer for the Sun City Center Emergency Squad from 2007 until this past summer, Bob was responsible for basic facility maintenance as well as maintenance of the squad’s cars and ambulances. A shooting sports enthusiast, Bob belonged to the Kings Point Sportsmen’s Club, joining other members every Friday for practice and competitions at the local gun range. If Bob drove by and saw us outside working in our yard—or even thinking about working in our yard--he would always stop and ask if we needed help. He was a reliable snake remover if one of the neighbors found one in the garage or, worse yet, in the house! Many enduring friendships from his SCC volunteerism enriched his life and enriched the lives of those with
whom he worked. Most weekdays, after checking in at the squad to see if he was needed, Bob would be absent from the neighborhood until late afternoon or dinner time—that is, once he discovered Elmira’s Wildlife Sanctuary in Wimauma, which wife Kathy calls “his mistress!” From then on, you could count on his being at Elmira’s where his unwavering commitment led him to join a handful of like-minded animal lovers in rescuing all manner of wildlife from tigers, bears, and wolves to exotics like lemurs and bobcats. Says Robin Greenwood, founder and CEO of Elmira’s, “In 2008, Bob (Bizz) showed up at the gate of Elmira’s wanting to volunteer. He never left! Fondly known as Papa Bear, Bob was a favorite of all the animals from the dogs and cats to the bears and tigers! When he showed up, they knew they were in for a treat.” In 2009, Bob was Elmira’s Volunteer of the Year and, she adds, “in our hearts every other year, too!” Bob would mow the huge sanctuary grounds on a regular basis, build, help build, and repair cages/enclosures and other housing for the animals large and small, and gave tours of the sanctuary to help educate and garner support for
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the self-sustaining sanctuary. He and other volunteers went on “meat runs” to get not-quite-out-of-date meat from local businesses like Walmart to feed the animals and keep Elmira’s nonexistent budget almost manageable. He got friends to donate to Elmira’s, as well. It wasn’t just about the animals, says Greenwood. “He brought food to disabled friends, took people to and from the ER, and rescued people on the side of the road. He was our hero,” she says. Others who volunteered with Bob likewise had nothing but praise for the man who dedicated his time and resources so freely. According to Merri Nehrboss, a long-time volunteer at Elmira’s Wildlife Sanctuary who worked alongside Bob, “Bob loved all the animals and did so much for them. He also took care of the other volunteers, bringing them apple fritters from Publix every Saturday. We all looked forward to that!” On most Fridays, she added, “a few close friends would meet for supper and even Bob got to say something once in a while. It was hard to do,” she explained, “with four or five women doing most of the talking, but he was always a good sport. He was always there to help where needed. He will be greatly missed!” Greenwood added: It was an honor and a privilege to work with Bob for so many years. It’s impossible to put into words how much we [already] miss him. Apple fritters will never taste the same!” After three months of wrestling with a body that would ultimately betray him, Bob left us in the wee hours of Friday, October 22. In addition to his family, he leaves behind a grieving community of more friends, neighbors, and SCC residents, and a legacy of a person who embodied what it means to find joy in finding ways to help.
Flo Bradbury and Jamie Hendrickx, Chapter members, are pictured with Sew'n Sews member, Jan Ring.
Sew’n Sews Stitch Smiles Into Pillowcases
L to R: Judith and Dieter Quitsch, Esther and Walter Geissler, Kurt and Elfi Noldern (Not pictured Christal Fraebel).
German American Club
By Paula Lickfeldt In 1999, Walter Geissier, who had come from Wisconsin, started the SCC German American Club. Walter had been very involved with German activities in Wisconsin, and he missed them when he moved to SCC. Realizing that there were a lot of German people in SCC he decided to try to get a German social club started. Twelve people came together to write the bylaws for a club and to apply for club status with the CA. The first meeting of the German American Club was in 2000. Seven of the members of the original club are active members of the club today. Three are Walter Geissler
who was the first club president, Kurt Nolden who was the second club president, and Dieter Quitsch who was the third president. Today, membership is around 300. They have four parties a year and one meeting. The club members put a German Christmas Tree in the lobby of the Atrium Building each year. Skat is a German card game that is very popular with the members of the club, and they also like to play Hand and Foot. The annual Christmas party will be on December 9 at the Community Hall. This year, the seven original members who are still active in the club will be honored.
Ryan’s Case for Smiles is a nationwide volunteer organization, with over 120 chapters worldwide, dedicated to helping sick children cope with the stress of their illnesses and injuries by providing brightly colored, whimsical pillowcases. On November 8, a group of Sun City Center Sew’n Sews Club members delivered 288 pillowcases to “INSPIRE” Quilting & Sewing store in Plant City which is a central “pickup point” for pillowcases being distributed
to Bay area hospitals by the Tampa Bay Chapter of Ryan’s Case for Smiles. The goal of the local Chapter is to deliver 1200 pillowcases a month to 10 Bay Area Hospitals. Membership in the Sun City Center Sew'n Sews Club is open to SCC Community Association members and gold card members from Kings Point. For more information, call 813-5059503 or email “www.scc.sew.n.sews@ gmail.com”.
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The News of Sun City Center
NOTICE: Each community and club in Sun City Center and Kings Point has specific rules about membership and attendance. Unless specifically stated or posted, most venues, meetings and events hosted on the Community Association campus and in Kings Point require attendees to bring their SCC CA or KP ID or come with a resident member. When in doubt, contact the club in question - not the venue or association - prior to arrival. Thanks.
SCC Art Club Gallery & Workshop
Joanna Coke, a well-known artist who teaches at the Manatee Art Center in Bradenton and has given workshops throughout the United States and Europe, will be presenting a one-day workshop February 9 from 9:30 to 4 in the Art Club Room at 915 Cherry Hills Drive. The Workshop is entitled “Marshes for Acrylics and Watercolor”. Prior to that she will be presenting a demonstration workshop on December 6 at 1 p.m. in the Rollins Theater.
Organ KeyBoard Club News
The Organ KeyBoard club wishes all a Merry Christmas and a healthy New Year. It is the time of year we play Christmas music for clubs in Sun City on our organs. Donations accepted. We meet every Thursday at 9:30 in the Armstrong Room Lesson begins 10-11 a.m. No reservation or instrument is needed, just a pencil to write notes on the music you will be given by the teacher that is going to be the song you will learn that day. Cost $3. On Friday from 1 to 4 members can practice for free on anyone of our four organs. Kings Point residents welcome with gold card. Info: SCCOKC.org
SCC New England Club Cookout
The Sun City Center New England Club will host another popular cookout on December 9 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Horseshoe Pavilion, S. Pebble Beach Blvd., behind Community Hall. Hot dogs, burgers, baked beans, bottled water, chips and cookies will be served. Cost is $5 per person paid upon entry for New England Club members. Non-members will pay an annual $5 per person New England Club Membership fee and $5 per person cookout fee. Email Bob Sanchez at “email@example.com” to reserve. Must wear SCC CA badge for entry. You can bring other beverages and/or lawn chairs if desired. (Alcohol is allowed.) If necessary, rain date will be December 10.
Multicultural Heritage Club Annual Gala
Friday, December 17, from 6 – 10 p.m. Community Hall, South Pebble Beach Blvd. Tickets available at the Atrium 10 to noon on Monday-Wednesday-Friday. $35 in advance, $40 at the door, $275 for table of 8. Dinner, dancing, door prizes, raffles. Semiformal. BYOB. Masks available on request at the door. Catering by Banquet Masters. Back by popular demand: DJ Willie Matos. For more info, call 813-461-4576.
Computer Club Monthly Meeting
Wednesday December 8 at 7 p.m. In today’s world where we all have dozens, if not hundreds, of passwords to remember, we think it is crucial to use a password manager. Using a password manager, like LastPass, means that you can have long, complex passwords that are different for every site. All you need to remember is the one master password.
Computer Club Classes
Buying a Computer • Tuesday, December 7, from 9 to 11 a.m. Introduction to File Explorer • Friday, December 10, from 9 to noon. Introduction to Computers • Mondays, December 6, 13, 20, January 3, from 10 to noon. Students must be a member in good standing at Sun City Center or Kings Point. Tuition is payable upon registration. Info: Pauline Baker, “paulinebaker864@gmail. com” or www.scccomputerclub.org.
New England Club Ham’n Bean Dinner
Metaphysical Society Presentations
10 to noon, Heritage Room, Atrium Open to Society members and SCCCA residents joining the Club December 1 • “I Have Seen the Future,” presentation with MaryLou Houllis, who was the Director of New Beginning Oneness Center for over 25 years. December 8 • “Holiday Party and Elections.” Brief elections will start us off followed by our festive holiday party. Santa is providing sandwiches and potato salad, coffee and iced tea (sweet and unsweet). Members are to contribute to the dessert table. Let’s spread holiday cheer! December 15 • “The Loss of a Twin and What is Our Role Here,” presentation with author and member Jennifer Lutz.
Raffle winners at the New England Club’s Ham'n Bean dinner left to right Donald Kabala, Gerry Ready, Jim Schwartz, and Linda Anderson. Over 100 members attended.
Polish-American Heritage Culture Club SCC
The SCC Polish-American Heritage Culture Club is having to cancel their annual Wigilia Christmas Dinner Fundraiser on December 5. Tickets are being refunded. The next meeting of the Club is planned for Tuesday, January 25 at 7 p.m. in the Sandpiper Room, featuring a guest speaker on “Why I am Proud to be Polish.” For information, call Betty at 931-446-3879.
The New England Club’s Ham’n Bean dinner in November was a time for good food and renewed friendships.
Needlecrafters Offer One-Of-A-Kind Gifts
The shop will be open Saturday, December 4, and Saturday, December 11, from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. for your shopping convenience. There are many handmade items from which to choose. Whether you are in need of an adorable stuffed toy, blanket, bib, hat or sweater for the young, we have it. Or one (or more) of the many adult items, such as, shawls, throws, jewelry, kitchen items, or the very popular playing card accessories, we have them all.
Sew’n Sews Donate Dresses
Eighty dresses made by Sew'n Sew Club member, Minette Hunt, were given to Annie Hunter who will take them to the Dominican Republic this month. Annie is pictured below with Club President, Mary Lou Bogdan. Info: 813-505-9503 or “www.scc.sew.n.sews@ gmail.com”.
Ceramics Show Winners
Here are the winners of SCC’S Ceramic Show held October 22, 23. Stop in at the shop, located between the pool and Lawn Bowling, anytime between 9-4, M-F! Join for $20 per year and make your own masterpieces.
Happy Holidays of Sun City Center & South County
News Line: 813.938.7441 • Ad Line: 813.938.8721 • www.soco.news • December 2021
“Together Again!” At the Holiday Golf Cart Parade
By Diane M. Loeffler Kick off the holiday season by attending the December 4 SCC Holiday Golf Cart Parade. The parade starts at 10 a.m. in the parking lot just south of the Security Patrol Building and circles around North Campus. You will want to arrive well in advance to get the best spot. Bring your chairs or park your golf cart in one of the designated areas. You are welcome to bring your family and friends along. Some of the carts you see will be amazingly creative, some will be fun, all of them will make you smile. After the parade, you can do some Christmas shopping at some of the club rooms. You will find many great gifts for family, friends and yourself. Community Association Director and Parade Coordinator, Larry Smith says, “After two years, we can see how much we have missed being together. I cannot think of a better way to celebrate than to be with family, friends and neighbors. Being together again. Lemonade and cookies
of dignitaries, sheriff’s office and emergency responders represented in our parade.” See you there!
One of the winners from 2019. The most creative had to be the Grinch “driving” this classic car.
A bird’s eye view of the 2018 Holiday Cart Parade route (Drone photo by John Wakeman / News file photo).
are something that youngsters— and those of us that still consider ourselves youngsters—can look forward to.” Smith says, “We have had over 50 participants in our mile long parade that takes about an hour to complete. Introductions
Artwork Even Your Toddlers Will Understand By Andrea L.T. Peterson Back in 2008, “people thought it was a horrible neighborhood, but I thought it was a diamond in the rough,” says Mary Lee, founder and owner of the in Sarasota where the Marietta Museum of Art and Whimsy now stands. It could now be said that the museum itself is the crown jewel of the neighborhood! A fascinating indoor museum and outdoor sculpture garden, the museum is one of a kind. Lee wanted to bring “artwork that the general public could understand. They could just go in and enjoy it.” If the sculpture gardens are any indication, I’d say she’s achieved her goal. We first went to visit the museum the very day it closed for what is now the duration of the COVID season. I’ve yet to tour the museum itself. We never suspected it, and much of our world would shut down for more than a year! But we were able to enjoy the sculptures. I returned again, a month or so ago—still closed—but I was able to photograph more of the sculptures in the garden behind the museum itself. The good news is that the
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museum had a “soft opening” from 1 to 2 p.m. on November 27. What that means is the gardens will be open and mask wearing visitors will be able to enjoy all of the sculptures, the enhanced landscaping, and the general whimsical ambience for an afternoon. The following week, they will resume “regular hours—” ThursdaySaturday from 1-4. On that Saturday, December 4, they will host a cookie exchange: bring two dozen, take home two dozen. For the safety of the allvolunteer staff and other visitors, guests will be required to wear masks until further notice as well as vinyl gloves during the cookie exchange. The gardens are a delightful adventure for the entire family. This is flaming-o-holic heaven with many great flamingo
Artwork continued on page 8.
and Prizes after the parade will be short to allow spectators to continue to view the many creative entrants’ carts around the gazebo on Cherry Hills. The parade route will be closed to automobiles during the event. This year we will have a number
One of the winners from 2019 “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.” They played the song throughout the parade as well.
Welcome Aboard America’s Tall Ship
By Ilona Merritt Welcome aboard! You are invited to visit “America’s Tall Ship.” Since 1946, every new Coast Guard cadet undergoing officer training has begun their career by learning to sail on Eagle – the traditional way. Eagle has offered generations of Coast Guard Academy cadets, and more recently, officer candidates, an unparalleled leadership experience at sea. They are always looking forward to incredible voyages of safe and exciting sailing, hard work, and in-depth leadership training with the future officers of the Coast Guard. The primary mission of the Eagle is training. Every cadet who attends the Coast Guard Academy will spend a minimum of six weeks on board Eagle. In addition to learning the nautical traditions of their profession, cadets learn basic seamanship and navigation skills and important team-building and leadership skills. The ways of old still have much to teach. The conditions and situations you face under sail can’t be replicated either in a classroom or aboard today’s modern ships. Onboard Eagle, cadets find themselves suddenly out of their element. Dependent on wind, waves, and currents, they quickly learn how these forces of nature affect a vessel. They become skilled in ship-handling, decision-making, and meeting unexpected challenges. They learn the importance of crew members working together to
handle the ship safely. USCGC Eagle also performs a public relations role for the Coast Guard and America. Eagle welcomes the public for a visit during domestic port calls and calls foreign ports as a floating goodwill ambassador for US diplomatic relations. Eagle has hosted Presidents Kennedy, Nixon, and Truman. When Tall Ships gather together, we are most likely to see Eagle leading the parade. She is a tremendous draw for visitors. This past summer, she was in Reykjavik, Iceland. Repairs kept her three additional days in port and during that time was visited by 18,000 people. By 1979, the Coast Guard had developed plans for an extensive refit at the Coast Guard Yard facility in Baltimore. From 1979 to 1983, Eagle visited the yard all four winters between summer deployments. In 2014, Eagle began a similar refit. The ship’s crew temporarily shifted its administrative homeport
Tall Ship continued on page 21.
The Editor’s Corner
Reaching for Hope
By E. Adam Porter Editor, News of SCC & South County Christmas Eve / Sarajevo is one of the most recognizable modern classics of the holiday season. The song, an instrumental rock medley of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and Shchedryk (Carol of the Bells) by Floridaborn band Savatage, gained international fame when the band re-released the track as part of a side project, Christmas Eve and Other Stories, under the name, Trans-Siberian Orchestra (TSO). That album, on the strength of this track, brought international fame to TSO, who still tour to sold-out arenas every holiday season. The story that inspired Christmas Eve / Sarajevo encapsulates the hope of the holiday season in a way that transcends artistic attempts to capture the spirit celebrated this time of year. In the 1990s, war devastated Bosnia, leading to the destruction of much of the country, including the capital city, Sarajevo. Horrific scenes of suffering and ruin filled TV news segments night after night, including one incident in which a mortar killed 22 people who were simply in line waiting for food. During the war, Sarajevoborn cellist Vedran Smailovic returned to the war-torn city. Moved by the suffering of his countrymen, Smailovic did what he could to buoy their spirits. He sat down on the rubble, took out his instrument, and he played. Bombs continued to fall every night, and, every day, Smailovic played. For 22 days, he played. When members of Savatage heard the story, they, like many in the western world, were moved by this expression of transcendent beauty in the midst of a waking nightmare. Speaking of their inspiration, TSO lyricist Paul O’Neill told a reporter, “What most broke this man’s heart was that the destruction was not done by some outside invader… it was done by his own people. Serbs were shelling Sarajevo every night. Rather than head for the bomb shelters, this man went to the town square, climbed onto a pile of rubble that had once been a fountain, and played Mozart and Beethoven…” Inspired by this man’s bravery and love for his country and its people, O’Neill and his bandmates crafted a medley that gives every character a voice: the orchestra represents one side of the conflict, while the band represents the other. “The cellist,” O’Neill adds, “represents hope.” Hope. This candle flame that burns brightest when the world is at its darkest, is at the core of many of the holy days we celebrate
during this collective Holiday Season. Hanukkah menorahs, Advent candles, Christmas lights, Yule logs, and countless other ancient and enduring cultural emblems… each of these lights represents the spark of hope pushing back against encroaching evil. Whether celebrating an unlikely victory against an invading enemy; gathering to share warmth during the cold, dark, bleakness of midwinter; or marking the birth of the light of the world, hope is at the very core of these traditions. Though difficult to define and impossible to quantify, hope remains sacred and powerful. Ask anyone who has lived through a time when they had nothing else but hope, and they will not explain the word, they will tell you a story or show you a scar. Hope is lighting a candle in the darkness, making music amid explosions, and finding any way we can to make things better instead of losing ourselves in despair. Listen to the current events of the day, and it’s tough to discern the hope. Wars, conflicts, economic unrest, division, political infighting… and, of course, the pandemic. Anger, frustration, and pain are easy to find. Sometimes, the negativity feels like a tsunami threatening to wash over all of us. Except… I know people who lived in places where the bombs fell, and they tell me life is getting better every day. I sit with folks who have fought addiction and illness, who understand what it feels like when your own body betrays you, people who, in the darkest hours of the lonely night, wondered if, maybe, the world would be a better place without them in it. They made it through, and, now, here they are, caring for others fighting those battles, helping them believe that tomorrow will be a better day. I hear the calm, measured words of a steady, empathetic reverend named Fred Rogers reminding me to “look for the helpers.” I think about Adagio in G Minor echoing off collapsed stone as the bombs fell on a market square, and I remember the tired eyes of an old woman with faded numbers tattooed on her arm telling me, hope is always there if you are willing to keep reaching for it. Hope is there in the faces of survivors and refugees, people for whom terror and loss, starvation and deprivation and humiliation are not narratives to be parsed and debated on TV news. They have stared fathomless darkness in the face. They have seen evil in the faces of their neighbors. When there was nothing left of the lives they knew, they reached inside themselves and found a spark. Hope is there in the plaintive tones played by a lone cellist seated on rubble instead of a concert stage, in the hands of a helper handing a box of food to a young mother, in the welcoming smile of a stranger, in the flickering of holy candles, and in the stories that keep us
going when the world feels like it’s falling down around us. Whatever you believe, however you celebrate this season, the hope at the center of our most sacred traditions connects all
of us. When we cannot believe, when the loss is too real, and the pain is too great, hope is there. Happy holidays. Let’s all do what we can to keep the light burning.
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Eagle Audubon’s December Meeting
Community Foundation of Tampa Bay Supports the Emergency Squad
Monday, December 13; Doors open at 1:20 p.m. St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 1239 W Del Webb Blvd. Daniel Roberts, a scientist from Mote Marine Laboratory will present the West Florida Shelf. It is an aquatic shelf, almost as large as Florida, from the Panhandle to the Dry Tortugas, with an amazing history. For more information check “eagleaudubonflorida.org”. CDC guidelines will be followed. All meetings are free and open to the public
The Emergency Squad recently was given a grant from the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay. The grant is earmarked for the purchase of 24 traffic safety vests, used when first responders are working an auto accident scene. The grant, $1200, allowed the Squad to purchase 24 vests to replace the existing vests which are over ten years old.
AAUW Succeeds With Scholarships
CAHT Caribbean Party: 3 o’Clock Somewhere
Join members of AAUW Sun City Center SouthShore Branch (American Association of University Women) on Saturday, December 11, to hear about and from our various scholarship winners of recent years. This will be our last zoom meeting and starting January of 2022 we will return to in-person meetings held usually in the Florida Room of the SCC Atrium. This meeting will begin at 10 a.m. but future meetings will begin at 9:30 for greetings, food and social time before scheduled speakers. This local Branch of AAUW raises money for scholarships for mature women to attend HCC/Ruskin campus. Many are the first in their families to ever attend any type of higher education. Anyone interested in joining this zoom meeting should call Angie Maze at 813-505-8998 to be sent the Zoom link.
This stylish and luxurious 1955 Cadillac Coupe DeVille shown by Carlos Alonso is the Roamin’ Oldies November cruiser of the month.
Cruiser of the Month: 1955 Caddy Coupe DeVille
The Cadillac Coupe DeVille was the height of American style and luxury in 1955. Fast-forward 66 years, and many think it still is. The glistening black DeVille shown by Carlos Alonso of Town & Country was chosen Cruiser of the Month at the Roamin’ Oldies Car Club November cruise-in. Carlos has been an active old-car enthusiast for the past 10 years, but acquired the Cadillac just two months ago. It is now powered by an upgraded 6.2-liter Cadillac V8, but looks just like it did on the showroom floor. Large and lavishly appointed, GM described it as a premium vehicle with “all the sophistication of an elegant coupe with the spacious six-passenger comfort of a luxury sedan.” The Roamin’ Oldies host a cruise-in from 1 to 4 p.m. the first Sunday of every month, with a rain date the following Sunday, at the Mira Bay Village Shopping Center on US41 in Apollo Beach. Info: Frank at 856-373-8497.
Sunday, December 5 from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Caloosa Golf & Country Club, SCC Campaign Against Human Trafficking and Domestic ViolenceSouthshore, is hosting a fundraiser and Caribbean party There will be 54 silent auction items. Complimentary drink, appetizers, and dancing. BYOB event with ice and glasses offered. Tickets are $20 each and can be purchased from Robbie Chaplin at 319-360-7025 or at their website: www.sccblueheart.org. Info: Helen DePinto at 813-773-7529.
Emergency Squad Chief Mike Bardell and Deputy Chief Tina Drury accepted the donation from Sun City Center Charitable Foundation Treasurer Frank Reid and President Walt Cawein. Surrounding them are other Squad members and Foundation Board members (Photo courtesy of Sally Reid).
SCC Charitable Foundation Donates to Emergency Squad
By Sally Reid Board members of the Sun City Center Charitable Foundation, Inc. recently presented a check in the amount of $2,346 to the Sun City Center Emergency Squad (“the Squad”). The donated funds will be earmarked by the Squad to purchase tourniquets that will be provided, at no cost, to each student who participates in its regularly offered, free-of-charge, Stop The Bleed community training course, as well as being used in conjunction with patient care provided on its ambulances and wheelchair vans. To learn more about the Squad or its Stop The Bleed training course, visit their website at www.sccems.com or call their business line at 813633-1411.
Community continued on page 6.
We Welcome Selina J. Lin, M.D.
Coastal Eye Institute is pleased to welcome Dr. Selina Lin to our Sun City Center office. Dr. Lin is a Board-Certified Ophthalmologist and Fellowship-Trained Retina Specialist with expertise in:
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Community continued from page 4.
South Shore Democratic Club
First Thursday of the month at 1 p.m. St Andrew Presbyterian Church 1239 W. Del Webb Blvd. Concerned about clean water? Unchecked housing development? School quality issues? Road congestion? Your continued right to vote? Join the South Shore Democratic Club to hear our legislators give us the ongoing discussions on these issues. Info: “SSDmembership@gmail.
Samaritan Services Offering a New Program
Samaritan Services is pleased to announce a new outreach program: Samaritan’s Dementia Auxiliary. Prior to this announcement, our 50 hours of free in-home care was only available to those individuals who had a doctor’s diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease. Now, those who have Dementia will be eligible to utilize our services. There are 3 requirements: (1) The recipient of the care MUST have either a current Kings Point ID badge or a current SCCCA ID badge. (2) The recipient will need to provide documentation from a doctor verifying the Dementia diagnosis. (3) Schedule a meeting with the Samaritan’s Dementia Coordinator. For additional questions please contact the Samaritan Services office at 813-634-9283.
Caloosa Members Pitch in for New Tractor
When a new tractor was needed for doing grounds maintenance, Caloosa Golf and Country Club members, who are owners, stepped up and did it! A mega 50/50 raffle ran for 15 days and raised almost $6,000. Along with other member donations, the total proceeds exceeded $8,000. (Picture by Nancy Williams).
South Bay Genealogy Society Meeting
Tuesday, December 21, Round table discussion at 10:30 a.m. Luncheon at noon; speaker at 1 p.m. United Methodist Church in the Life Enrichment Center 1210 W Del Webb Blvd. Our speaker, George G. Morgan, will be speaking on “Sidestep Genealogy,” a research method to overcome our brick walls. This will be a live virtual presentation viewed in the United Methodist Church’s LEC auditorium. The cost is $15 for the meal and the presentation. For reservations and meal choice, call Dianna Loudermilk at (864) 607-1330. Make your check payable to SBGS, and mail it to SBGS, P.O. Box 5202, Sun City Center, FL 33571. Your check must be received by December 9, 2021.
GFWC SCC Woman’s Club December General Meeting
Thursday, December 16, at 11 a.m. SCC Community Hall East Bay High School Theater Group will present a Christmas Cabaret. All the Angel Tree gifts will be collected for children in Wimauma. We will resume offering a hot, catered buffet for members that choose to request lunch in their reservation. All members attending the meeting need to make a reservation in advance by 11 a.m. on Monday, December 13. Please email “firstname.lastname@example.org” if you will be attending and if you are planning to eat lunch, $16 per catered buffet lunch to be paid at check-in. More information will be provided to club members in the December newsletter. Info: “sccwomansclub.org”, or contact Rosita Rodriguez-Barton at 703.973.0563 or “email@example.com”.
Knights of Columbus Honor Clarence Padgham on His 104th Birthday
Clarence Padgham receives Resolution honoring his 71 years of service to the Knights of Columbus from Assembly Navigator Tom Cummings. Sir Knight Clarence Padgham celebrated his 104th birthday recently at a party held at his place of residence. During the celebration, The Prince of Peace 4th Degree Assembly 2533 presented him with a Resolution of Appreciation which recognized his 71 years of service to the Knights of Columbus. Clarence became a First Degree Knight in June of 1950, 71 years ago and later worked his way to becoming a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus in April of 1966, 55 years ago.
L to R: Tom Potter, Kristin Scott, Diane Neyenhouse, Jim Neyenhouse, and instructors John Gentry and B. J. Capron.
Emergency Squad Announces New Emergency Medical Responders
The Emergency Squad is pleased to announce its newest Emergency Medical Responders from its October class. Emergency Medical Responders go through 54 hours of training including eight hours of CPR class. They must pass CPR in order to become an EMR. After finishing the class, all the volunteers go through mentoring before working on the ambulance or wheelchair van. The EMR is responsible for recording the patient’s medical history, medications, allergies and preparing the Patient Care Report in conjunction with the EMT. They also must be prepared to assist with any patient care as requested by the EMT.
KPAL Artist of the Month: Lynda G. Aquilo
Lynda was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and was never bored because she was coloring, sketching, and designing from a very young age. And following college at her father’s alma mater, she graduated from The University of Mt. Union in Alliance, Ohio, with a double degree— a minor in art & a major in education. She remained in Ohio for the duration of her adult life. She and her husband moved as snowbirds to Sun City Center in 2006, and became full-time residents in 2017. Lynda taught elementary school for a few years, then did graduate work at the University of Akron in Ohio awarding her a degree to teach middle school art for the duration of her 31-year career in education.
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Military News Edwin Ortiz, FL Dept of Veterans Affairs, Addresses MOWW
Veterans Honored by Sew’n Sews
Five veterans from SCC received a military quilt on November 1 in recognition of and appreciation for their military service. The quilts were made by members of the SCC Sew’n Sews club as part of their “Honor a Veteran” charity outreach. Assisting in the presentation at the Community Association Heritage Room was Ed Mooney, LTC, USA (Ret.). Quilt recipients were Paul Letendre, Jerry (Ron) Hatfield, Reath Blickenderfer, Donald Babair, and Roger Vandenabelle.
MOAA Briefs on Gulf of Tonkin Incident
Former Navy Lieutenant Gary Williams gave a compelling analysis of the Gulf of Tonkin incident at the MOAA Luncheon on November 3. This incident was used by the Johnson administration to escalate the presence of U.S. forces in South Vietnam. LT. Williams was assigned to a destroyer operating with the Task Force operating in the waters off North Vietnam when the incident took place. Mr. Williams has studied the incident from every angle, even interviewing the commander of the Task Force CAPT, then Vice ADM James Stockdale, years after being the senior POW held for eight years in the Hanoi Hilton. VADM Stockdale was awarded the Medal of Honor for his leadership at the prison during those years. Mr. Williams now lives in Clearwater with his wife and is a member of the Clearwater chapter of MOAA.
By B. Frank Kepley CAPT USN (Ret) The Military Order of the World Wars (MOWW) held their monthly meeting/luncheon at the Freedom Plaza Club, Sun City Center, on November 18. The featured speaker was MAJ Edwin M. Ortiz, USA (Ret). Maj. Ortiz served in the U.S. Army for 20 years including: the 10th Special Forces Group, 396th Signal Company, 193rd Infantry From left, Chapter Commander, Brigade, 11th Armored Cavalry Doug Roderick, Col. USAF (Ret) presenting MOWW memento to Regiment, 17TH Signal Battalion, MAJ. Edwin Ortiz, USA (Ret) G-7 Communications Officer in V Corps, Senior Communications Observer-Controller in Fort Chafee, and logistics/communications support for the 7th Special Forces Group in Fort Bragg. MAJ Ortiz is currently a Claims Examiner with the Florida Department of Veterans Affairs. For more than a dozen years Edwin has answered inquiries from the Governor’s office and trained other Veteran Service Officers from Florida’s 67 counties in the benefits/ procedures area for the federal Veterans Administration. He discussed available veterans’ benefits, where to find out more about them, and the eligibility rules for acquiring the benefits at VA hospitals. He stressed that much of the information can be found at the Veteran’s Resource Center (VRC), the department’s headquarters, and is located on the grounds of the Veterans Memorial Park & Museum. He encouraged the veterans to visit that facility. He also provided information on additional Hillsborough County veterans-oriented facilities. Prior to Maj. Ortiz’s presentation, Companion Charles Organ, MAJ USA, was Inducted as a Perpetual member. MOWW SCC Chapter 226 meets monthly at 11 a.m. on the third Thursday of the month, except July and August, at the Freedom Fairways GC Plaza Club on Upper Creek Drive. For information regarding membership contact Col. Douglas Roderick USAF (Ret); 813-283-2941.
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sculptures waiting to be photographed with you! See the photos for a more broad view of what you’ll find. There is plenty of parking and the grounds are ADA accessible. There is no café or on-site retail store. Pictures may be taken— with cell phones only out of respect for the artists whose livelihood depends on their artwork. The Marietta Museum of Art and Whimsy is located at 2121 N Tamiami Trail in Sarasota. “Just go in and enjoy it!” No explanation necessary!
Senior Basketball Is Back
By Bob Monahan After a long layoff due to Covid-19, basketball players aged 50 plus are welcome to dust off their sneakers and join a group of seniors enjoying the game at the Ruskin Recreation Center. The Ruskin Recreation Center is a Hillsborough County facility located at 901 Southeast 6th Street just off SR-674 three miles west of Sun City Center. All county residents are welcome to play on Mondays and Fridays from 9:30 to 11:30. Unlike full court basketball seniors play a half-court game and take as many breaks as needed. The facility is a modern air-conditioned building with hardwood floors that can accommodate two games at the same time. This allows participants to play at the speed they feel comfortable with and gradually get into shape at their own pace. Injuries are at a minimum and friendship is the focus. The county charges $10.75 per month to play. You pick the months you want to play and only pay for those months. Included in the fee is the use of
pickleball courts, volleyball and the fitness center. It was good to return to the courts and reestablish friendships with old and new friends. Players are fully vaccinated. The county follows all the CDC mandates. You can sign up to play by registering with Joy Robinson, Director at “robinsonj@hcslgov. net”, call 813-672-7881 or just come prepared to pay then play. To find out more information about the Basketball Club you can go to their website at “SouthShoreBasketball.com”.
Catch The NEWS on the web at www.soco.news
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December 6: Happy St. Nicholas Day
By Ilona Merritt Sinterklaas, also called Saint Nicolaus or Sankt Nikolaus and Saint Nicolaas Taag is on December 6, which is the day children in some European countries receive their gifts. For many centuries, Sinterklaas arrived on a snow-white horse on a ship from Myra, Turkey, to bring gifts to good children in the Netherlands, Austria, parts of Germany, Bohemia, and Switzerland. On December 5, children would polish their shoes and put them on their window sills (chimneys were not used since Reindeer were not available) and hope Sinterklaas would not miss bringing them gifts of nuts, candy, an orange (a truly special gift in the wintertime in Europe) and maybe a toy. Little girls might also put their dolls’ shoes out. I was one of those lucky little girls who lived in the northern part of Germany and grew up with this custom. Because I love all things Christmas, I carried this tradition forward to my sons, although I had already come to this country. My son carried it on while his children were small. For us, it was the preliminary round for Christmas, and so it is still practiced today in most European countries. Now, if the children had not been good, Black Peter, Sinterklaas’s helper, would put charcoal and a stick into their shoes. Both Sinterklaas and Santa Claus are the same figures,
Our modern American iteration of Santa as a globe-trotting, list-keeping, gift-bestowing jolly ol’ elf, is a combination and evolution of many different ancient and modern European holiday traditions.
based on Saint Nicholas of Myra, Turkey. Nicolas became the Bishop of Myra and later, after he was canonized, the patron saint of children, sailors, and more. He is credited with several miracles and his feast day is December 6. He was most famous for secret gift-giving to poor children by putting gold coins into their shoes while they were sleeping. In Germany, some religious families focus the gift-giving on Nikolaus in order to make Christmas Day a more solemn observance of Jesus’ birth. Christmas diversified with
the onset of the Protestant Reformation. Martin Luther was uncomfortable with the tradition of Nikolaus since the idolization of saints was a Catholic custom. Rather than abolishing presentgiving outright, Luther instead decided to introduce a new figure, re-centering the German Christmas tradition of the child
whose birth is celebrated. Das Christkind (Christ Child) was invented as an angel-like Jesus figure who brought the children presents. To distance it from Catholic tradition, Luther moved gift-giving from December 6 to Christmas Eve. That leaves the question, “Where does Santa Claus fit into this story?” He was developed during the 19th century in America out of the convergence of several distinct traditions. British folklore had long included “Father Christmas”. When this merged with the Dutch figure of Sinterklaas, Nikolaus was transformed into a jolly figure with big rosy cheeks. He kept his traditional red clothes and long white beard. It took a while for this new figure to be accepted in Germany. A 1932 survey found that German children were pretty evenly split on whether they believed in the Weihnachtsmann (as he became known in Germany) or the Christkind. Over time, however, Santa Claus proved victorious, and nowadays, children around the world look forward to his annual visit, be it December 6, 24, or 25.
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Moonglow Holiday Dance
Thursday, December 23 from 7 to 9 p.m. Community Hall, 1910 S. Pebble Beach Blvd. Moonglow Dance Club invites everyone to celebrate the season “Florida Style” with the live music of “Island Swing”” at their Holiday Dance. We scheduled this relaxed ballroom dance, open to the public! The attire is dressy casual or island style. Moonglow 2020 or 2021 members are free, and Visitors pay $8 per person at the door. BYOB and snacks, and the club provides Ice, water, cups and napkins. Info: 813-633-1297 or “firstname.lastname@example.org”.
Irish Movie Night
Monday, December 13 at 6:30 p.m. SCCCA Central Campus, Rollins Theater Movie: The Man Who Invented Christmas. Based on a tale about Charles Dickens. Four years after his success with the novel Oliver Twist, Dickens suffered financial problems after failure of several other books; he sets out to publish the next one on his own, which becomes the classic A Christmas Carol. Starring Dan Stevens and Christopher Plummer.
Kings Point Holiday Krafters’ Fair
Saturday, December 4, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. East West Social Room Lots of one-of-a-kind items for everyone on your list for the holidays. All proceeds are donated to our local charities here in Sun City Center as The Krafters’ club loves giving back to our community.
The Ditchfield Family to Perform Christmas Concert
Friday, December 3, at 7 p.m. United Methodist Church, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. W. The Ditchfield Family Singers are one of America’s most versatile family vocal ensembles and one of Florida’s favorite family musical groups. They are renowned from coast to coast for their close harmony and unique family blend. They will be performing carols and holiday favorites to capture the spirit and joy of Christmas. Tickets are $20 at the door, if available, on the night of the concert. Info: 813-362-0956.
Kings Point Italian Club Buon Natale Christmas Party
Tuesday, December 14, at 4:30 p.m. Kings Point Veterans Theater (North Clubhouse) Meal provided by Banquet Masters will include roast pork with rosemary shallot sauce, baked cod with mango salsa, and stuffed shells pomodoro (vegetarian). Coffee, tea, soda provided. BYOB. Music by Knot Brothers. Tickets: $25 members, $28 guests. Tickets on sale December 7 and 8 from 9 to noon in the North Clubhouse lobby. Info: May Fleming 813-419-4790 or John Saffran 262-758-2000.
Sights & Sounds of Christmas
Wednesday, December 15 at 6 p.m. United Methodist Church, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. W. Celebrate this holiday season with the annual Sights and Sounds of Christmas, an exciting evening of music and drama created by our talented and multi-generational ministries. The show will begin at 6 p.m. Please come and enjoy our gifted musicians as they present Christmas. For more information, please call the church office.
Women’s Chorus Holiday Concert – 2 Shows! Sunday, December 5, at 3 p.m. United Methodist Church, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. W.
Wednesday, December 8 at 4 p.m. St. Andrew Presbyterian, 1239 Del Webb Blvd. W. The SCC Women’s Chorus invites you to attend “Jingle in the Season”, their holiday concert for 2021. With Jeff Jordan directing and Valerie Southwell accompanying, this year’s program features a wide variety of traditional and popular music. There will be excellent soloists, audience participation and holiday favorites that are sure to bring back happy memories of the season. Admission is free, but the chorus gratefully accepts free-will donations which help to defray operating expenses and the cost of producing the concert. The chorus welcomes new members. A new winter-spring season will begin on Wednesday, January 5, 2022. Potential members who have some experience reading music will have an opportunity to audition on that date. For more information, please call Jayann Michael at 813-645-2472.
The Sounds of Christmas
Monday, December 13 at 7 p.m. Redeemer Lutheran Church, 701 Valley Forge Blvd. Rejoice in the spirit of Christmas melodies with friends, family, and colleagues. The South Shore Concert Band creates an endearing and impressive performance entitled “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” fit for the excitement of your friends and family. The concert will feature traditional favorites and whimsical pieces. The concert is open to the public; a free will offering will be taken.
Southshore Community Chorus Holiday Concert
Monday, December 6, at 7 p.m. United Methodist Church, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. W. The Southshore Community Chorus has planned some delightful holiday music for you! There is no charge or fee for attending the concert. All are welcome. They will, however, take up a love offering during the concert and hope you will enjoy the concert enough to be as generous as possible to help defray the cost of their expenses.
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TRAVEL December 2021
Clearwater Beyond the Beach
Most of us, when we hear Clearwater, think of the beach. There is much more to Clearwater. It extends pretty close to Tampa airport and these two activities are close to the airport. Christmas Wonderland By Kai Rambow If you’d like to jump start getting into the mood for Christmas, then a visit to Robert’s Christmas Wonderland should work. If you’d just like to have a fun Christmas excursion, then this might be the ticket. It’s not often you can experience several different emotions in a short time span. A visit to Robert’s Christmas Wonderland will do that. You’ll find yourself enchanted, amazed, surprised and laughing. For example, you can get a stuffed moose for Christmas or even a stuffed skunk. They advertise “everything for Christmas,” and they live up to that moniker. The sheer selection of Christmas trees is overwhelming. To match the selection of trees are
lights, ornaments and other decorations. The selection is seemingly endless. My favorite was the Florida themed tree, complete with pink flamingos. I wouldn’t want it in my home, but it was fun to see an entire tree decorated that way. You’ll spot a lovely nativity scene and a few steps later be laughing at the Griswolds. Superman surprised me. Superman at Christmas? Who knew? There are plenty of surprises here. Tips for a Great Trip: You’ll find the store on your left soon after crossing the bay on highway 60. It’s less than 20 minutes from the airport; 60 minutes from here. While it’s easy to find, GPS might be helpful. Note: You might consider this as a quick excursion after picking up family/friends at the airport. Robert’s Christmas Wonderland 2951 Gulf to Bay Blvd. (Highway 60) Clearwater, Florida 33759 (727) 797-1660 www.robertscw.com Open 10 to 5, longer on weekends
By Kai Rambow Tucked around the corner from Christmas Wonderland is a gem of a park. Lake Moccasin Nature Park is a delightful break with some wonderful touches. Right by the parking lot you’ll find rescued birds of interest: owls, hawks, kites and even a bald eagle. Since many of our visiting family/friends often ask about wildlife, this is a great opportunity to see these beautiful birds up close. Past the birds is a well-groomed nature trail. It’s an easy walk with boardwalk portions designed to ensure comfort and safety. In addition, there are plenty of trees providing shade on most of the trail. At the lake, there is a bird blind and an open observation platform. It may seem to be quiet, but pay attention. Almost at the end of my walk I encountered a cacophony of activity. Squirrels were chatting loudly followed by several cardinals, woodpeckers, and jays zipping from tree to tree. Tips for a Great Trip: This would be a wonderful
You never know what qualifies as Christmas décor. It’s fun to wander the isles at Christmas Wonderland.
This Florida themed tree was fun. Wouldn’t want it in my home, but it was fun to see it.
I was suddenly surrounded by cardinals, woodpeckers and jays. This jay was the only one sitting still long enough for a photograph.
The selection of Christmas trees is astonishing.
break or addition if you’re close by. If you’d like to have two fun excursions, but totally different experiences consider combining the Christmas store with this park. GPS will definitely be helpful navigating the streets between these two locations. Moccasin Lake Nature Park 2750 Park Trail Lane Clearwater, Florida 33759 (727) 562-4315 www.myclearwaterparks.com Open 10 to 5
Rarely seen and almost never at close range, this kite is one of several rescued birds on display near the main parking lot.
A year-round resident, this great blue heron left almost immediately when it spotted me.
FAITH &service 12
Pizza and a Movie
December 16, at 5 p.m. St. Andrew Presbyterian, 1239 Del Webb Blvd. W. Join us for all the pizza you can eat, homemade cakes of all kinds, and a soft drink all for a $7 ticket. Serving begins at 5 p.m. A classic Christmas movie will follow. Tickets can be purchased at the St. Andrew Presbyterian Church office Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information call the church at 813-634-1252.
Brother Malcolm S. Clements Earns Doctorate Degree
One of our own, Malcolm S. Clements, pastor for 46 years at First Baptist Church, Gibsonton, will be honored on December 12 at 6 p.m. as recipient of his Doctorate Degree by the Berean Christian College in Manatee County. You are cordially invited to attend the service and reception to follow at First Baptist Church, 9912 Indiana St. in Gibsonton, FL. 33534.
ISAC Grant Recipient: Mary and Martha House
The Interfaith Social Action Council of Sun City Center (ISAC) recently awarded the Mary and Martha House a grant in the amount of $8,600. The funds will be used for transitional housing for 15 women, with or without children. Pictured in the photo (L to R) Helen Lee, Nearly New Volunteer; Leticia Feregrino, Mary and Martha House; and Debbie Palladini-DuRant, Nearly New Volunteer.
Rock’n and Roll’n Art & Craft Fair
Saturday, December 4, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. St. Andrew Presbyterian, 1239 Del Webb Blvd. W. Go back in time as you view the antique cars & show cars outside. Among the Mustangs, Jaguar, and Corvettes will be a DeLorean (“Back to the Future”). Inside are 46 tables loaded with wood items, pottery, purses, painted tennis shoes, visors, mosaic art and many paintings of different mediums by talented artists for your Christmas shopping. Enjoy a hot dog lunch and listen to some rock & roll music. You will also be able to pick up a sweet treat at our bake sale. All this and more plus free admission. Info: 813-634-1252.
American Legion Post 246 Receives Grant from ISAC
The Interfaith Social Action Council of Sun City Center recently awarded the American Legion Post 246 a grant in the amount of $800. The funds will be used for student registration at the Florida Boys State. Pictured in the photo are James Haney, American Legion Post 246, and Linda Dealaman, a volunteer at the Nearly New Shop.
CAHT Receives Grants
Campaign Against Human Trafficking and Domestic Violence Southshore (CAHT) received two funding awards this month. The Interfaith Social Action Council awarded CAHT a $10,000 grant and the United Methodist Church of Sun City Center picked CAHT as their January mission of the month. CAHT will apply both funding and donations to their expanding safe shelter, victims and rescue services, anti-bullying puppeteers and scholarship programs. “We are thrilled with both these community awards and frankly, need their continued support for us to meet the demands in our community. This fall alone we have provided eight human trafficking and domestic abuse victims safe shelter, food, clothing and counseling as well as supporting other families with rental and legal assistance.” states President Robbie Chaplin.
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SPORTS December 2021
LAWN BOWLING • TENNIS • GOLF • SOFTBALL• PICKLEBALL & MORE!
World Champion Senior Basketball Player
Congratulations to Neal Westendorf, member of the local South Shore Basketball Club (formerly Sun City Center Basketball Club) for his recent World Championship in the 75-year-old division. Neal is an outstanding athlete and person. For more information about Senior Basketball go to: “Southshorebasketball.com”.
SCC Horseshoe Association
Lawn Bowling FunFest 50/50 Winner
By Garry Higgins It was Sun City Center resident Ken Bildstein’s lucky day. Not only was it his birthday, but he also won the Sun City Center Lawn Bowling Club’s annual 50/50 FunFest draw. Along with happy birthday wishes, Ken took home $334, presented by committee members Carol Swope, Joel Deitch and Lorraine Barbosa. Proceeds from the Club’s various activities at FunFest are used to help maintain the greens and purchase lawn bowling and croquet equipment.
Caloosa 18-Hole Sunday Mixer
Caloosa Golf and Country Club held a recent 18 hole Sunday mixer. Winners with a 70 were first row from left: Lynn Kalbfleisch, Jackie Tisch and Aileen Engel; second row: Pete Kalbfleisch, Larry Tisch and Mike Zwissler. Hosts were Gary and Mary Taylor. For information about golf or social memberships, contact the membership team at 813-634-6481 or visit the website at www.golfcaloosa.com. Picture by Nancy Williams
Come on out and join us at the Horseshoe Association horseshoe pits right behind the SCC Community Hall on South Pebble Beach. We’re the “ringers”. We teach pitching shoes. We have free coffee. And have free donuts once a month at board meeting time. We pitch three times a week: Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings, 8:30 to 10:15. You don’t have to make all the days, just what suits your schedule. Everyone is welcome, men and women. Makes no difference if you’re an old hand or new to the game. Everybody has fun. We hold tournaments with horseshoe clubs in the area, as well as having internal singles and doubles tournaments. Info: Joe Epstein 575-361-5325.
2021 Caloosa Annual Charity Golf Tournament
By Aileen Engel and Rosemarie Bryan The Caloosa Women’s Golf Association (CWGA-18) hosted the Caloosa Annual Charity Golf Tournament to benefit the Sun City Center Emergency Squad on Wednesday, October 27, 2021. Eighteen teams participated in the Florida Scramble event with a total of Seventy-two (72) golfers competing. It was a perfect day for golf and all participants enjoyed the day. We are happy to announce that our Annual Charity Event raised $3854 for our Sun City Center Emergency Squad. Following our final review of income vs. expenses we surpassed our initial donation Following lunch, our CWGA18 President, Barbara Struble goal of $2500. A Putting Contest was held prior presented the check to Mike to the start of play. Thirty-eight Bardell, Chief - Sun City Center golfers attempted to sink a putt Emergency Squad. to “Share the Hole” monies. Twelve golfers sank their putt and Greg Abdian was chosen as the winner. Golf Tournament Winners First Place with a score of 67: Greg Abdian, Dave Schulenberg, Helen Lewis, and Sharon Mathieu. Second Place with a score of 68: Ed Berry, Gloria Warr, Tom Mallak, and Joyce Shade. Third Place with a score of 68: Paula McGlothin, Carol Jager, Jim Munson, and Jackie Tisch. Longest Drive #18 - Men: Jim Rottman Longest Drive #18 - Women: Bobbie Cesarek Closest to Pin #17 - Men: Mike Zwissler Closest to Pin #17 - Women: Judy Tickles
HOLE IN ONE
Accomplished By: Frank O’Brien
Frank O’Brien scored a hole in one on Scepter Golf Club Osprey #5 (123 yards) using a 7 hybrid. Witnessed by Tim Ronnebaum, Ron Doncouse, and Yvon Thebeau.
Accomplished By: Frank Paris
Frank Paris sunk a hole in one at Scepter Golf Club Osprey #2 (130 yards) using a 7-iron. Witnessed by Bob Caceci and Dave Hourigan.
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NOTICE: Each community and club in Sun City Center and Kings Point has specific rules about membership and attendance. Unless specifically stated or posted, most venues, meetings and events hosted on the Community Association campus and in Kings Point require attendees to bring their SCC CA or KP ID or come with a resident member. When in doubt, contact the club in question - not the venue or association - prior to arrival. Thanks.
SCCCA Brings “Fleetwood Max” to the Stage
January 9 at 2:30 p.m. Doors open at 2. Community Hall, 1910 S. Pebble Beach Blvd. On Sunday, January 9, Sun City Center will rock to the sounds of Fleetwood Max, a Nationally touring concert Fleetwood Mac tribute production. These musicians are dedicated to combining their talents to provide the most accurate, personal, live re-creation of the magic that is Fleetwood Mac, Tickets to this event are $15 for SCCCA and $17 for Kings Point. There will be reduced seating, every other seat will be vacant. Ticket kiosk is located at N. Course Drive and is open M-W-F from 10 to 1. Come out and enjoy as Fleetwood Max brings the haunting melodies, vocal harmonies, and punctuating rhythms of Fleetwood Mac to life.
Women’s Chorus Begins New Season
The Women’s Chorus begins a new season with registration and the first rehearsal for former members on Wednesday, January 5, at 9 a.m., at The United Methodist Church of Sun City Center, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. West, Sun City Center. The chorus will meet each Wednesday morning from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. for 12 rehearsals in preparation for a spring concert on Sunday, March 27. Dues are $20 for the spring season. If you love to sing, have some background in reading music, appreciate four-part harmony, and enjoy the challenge of learning new music, this is the chorus for you! Membership is open to anyone in Sun City Center or the surrounding area. Prospective members are invited to come to registration on January 5, attend the rehearsal, and then audition for membership with the director, Jeff Jordan. Info: Jayann Michael at 813-645-2472.
Ballet for Seniors Club
Every Tuesday at 10 or 11:15 a.m. Dance Studio 2, north of the Lawn Bowling area on North Pebble Beach The mission of our club is to offer Beginner Ballet exercises to help our seniors develop proper posture and improve balance with a concentration on fluidity of movement to prevent falls. Sun City Center CA Card, Kings Point Gold Card, or Freedom Plaza ID is required. Please call Cindy Rohr, at 630-235-1277, to reserve your place in class.
West Coast Swing Dance Lessons
Every Friday at 6 p.m. Dance Studio 1 in the SCC Atrium Free Beginner West Coast Swing Dance Lessons. For couples who have a Sun City Center Community Association number, a Freedom Plaza ID or a Kings Point Gold Card. We will be closed during the holidays. Info: Cindy Rohr “Kidsmed80@gmail.com”. Class size will be limited to the first 20 couples.
Sun City Center Dance Club
By Renee Bray, SCCCA Entertainment Director Our season is underway! Unfortunately, our Savannah Jack concert had to be rescheduled due to unforeseen circumstances with the band. Hold onto your tickets, as they will be returning March 11 at 7 PM. The show was not completely sold out, so when they perform, additional tickets will be available. On Sunday December 12, the Atlantic City Renee Bray Boys will take the stage at 2:30 p.m. Their show is an exciting mix of world-class vocals and interactive comedy, featuring the rock-n-roll harmonies of the Beach Boys, Drifters, the Bee Gees, and of course, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Tickets to this event are $18 for SCCCA members and $20 for Kings Point residents. Tickets to January events will go on sale December 10 for SCCCA members (January 3 for Kings Point), including Tony Pace on January 16, Rocky and the Rollers dance on January 28, and the Entertainment Showcase of Talent, January 19. Also in January there will be two non-series events: Sunday, January 9 at 2:30 p.m., featuring Fleetwood Max, a Fleetwood Mac tribute band, and Wednesday, January 26 at 7 p.m., "Wise Guys" Adult Comedy Night. Tickets to these events are just $15 for SCCCA and $17 for Kings Point. They are on sale now for both communities. Both events will be held at the SCCCA Community Hall. The Atrium kiosk located on N. Course Drive, has hours on M-W-F from 10 to 1. All ticket purchasers must bring with them either their CA or KP badge for proof of residency, and can purchase as many tickets as they like, including for their friends and guests. Badges will not be required at the door, just a ticket. A complete line-up of all shows for the season is available at the kiosk, in the CA office on N. Pebble Beach Blvd or on our website at www. suncitycenter.org. All shows are held at the SCCCA Community Hall at 1910 S. Pebble Beach Blvd.
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Saturday, December 11, 7 to 9 p.m. SCC Community Hall, 1910 S. Pebble Beach Blvd Dance to the music of the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s. Attire is dressy casual no shorts. Admission is limited to SCC residents, Freedom Plaza (FP) residents with a Yellow Access Card, and Kings Point (KP) Gold Card holders only. Members free. Nonmembers $5 at the door with a valid SCC badge, FP Access Card, or KP Gold Card. Singles tables will be provided. Water and ice will be available upon request. BYOB, snacks, and refreshments. For more Info: Chuck MacDougall 978-995-6504.
Let’s Dance Ballroom Dance Club
Saturday, December 4, from 7 to 9 p.m. Celebrate holiday magic with us! This fabulous dance is presented by the Let’s Dance Ballroom Dance Club, in the South Community Hall, 1910 S. Pebble Beach Blvd. Dance to your holiday favorites with DJs Mike and Peg Johnston. Dress in holiday or casual attire, no shorts! BYOB and snacks for your table. Water, ice, and cups are provided. Bring your friends, or come and make new friends. There is open seating and a singles table. Members are free, guests are $5, but you must be a SCC card holder (please show your card). Also, Kings Point residents with a 2021 Gold Card are welcome. Info: Bill Dean at 813-331-3536.
Do You Wanna Dance Club
“Rockin in 2022” New Year’s Eve Dance Friday, December 31, from 7:30 p.m. until 12:30 a.m. SCC Community Hall, 1910 South Pebble Beach Blvd. Are you ready to end 2021 and bring in 2022 on the dance floor? “Lorelei on the Rocks” will provide live dance music to celebrate. Attendance is open to all SCC members, Freedom Plaza and Kings Point members and all SCC surrounding communities. Families and friends are welcome and encouraged. Tickets are $25 (nonrefundable), available only at the Atrium ticket kiosk from 10 to noon on M-W-F, through December 29. No tickets will be sold at the door. BYOB and BYO eats. Cups, ice, and napkins are provided. Holiday attire recommended. Info: Kathy at “jfkfunnsun@yahoo. com” or Pat at either “email@example.com” or 862-812-9009.
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Ed Mahoney: One of SCC’s World War II Heroes
By Diane M. Loeffler Ed Mahoney recalls the details of his time on the islands of Bougainville, Guam and Iwo Jima in vivid detail. His recollections of the events and the surroundings make you feel as though you are right there experiencing every minute. Walt Cawein (the driving force behind our Veterans Memorial on South Pebble Beach Boulevard), Kent Dozark (a history buff who has written down some of Mahoney’s stories), and I were privileged to talk to Mahoney for a few hours on Saturday, October 23. Ed is a 96-year-old World War II Veteran. He served in the 3rd Marine Division. He was one of three individuals participating in the flag raising at the October 16 FallFest. He also was the Master of Ceremonies for this year’s November 11 Veterans Ceremony at Community Hall. Mahoney’s WWII story begins in September 1942. Mahoney was 18 when he learned his friend had survived the sinking of the USS Lexington. He decided to walk from Dexter, Missouri to California where he planned to join the Navy. However, when he arrived in Oklahoma City, he decided to join at the recruiting office there instead. Mahoney mistakenly went in the Marine Office where a very persuasive recruiter talked him into joining the Marines. Mahoney laughs about one of the statements made by the recruiter, “If you join the Army, you’ll be digging ditches all of the time. The marines don’t dig ditches.” Mahoney says, “I found out right away that wasn’t true!” Ed Mahoney’s first battles were on the island of Bougainville in the South Pacific. Kent Dozark writes, “Ed could see three Japanese soldiers standing around the tree, talking. The order was given and Ed fired. The Japanese were hit and killed. That then set off a 30 to 40-minute firefight which ended in a Marine win.” Mahoney describes the round ‘spider holes’ the Japanese dug. He says, “The Japanese would crouch down in the holes. Our holes were different. We dug them so we could lay down.” Mahoney talks about several fights on the island. He also tells about one night when he was standing behind a tree. It was after midnight when he heard a thud above him. He couldn’t see anything then because it was dark. However, the next morning he looked at the tree and saw an arrow stuck in it. Dozak writes, “Ed retrieved it knowing it had been meant for him.”
WW II Marine Veteran Ed Mahoney stands in the Veterans Memorial on South Pebble Beach. Walt Cawein displays Mahoney’s brick. (Photo by Diane Loeffler)
Ed Mahoney shows where he landed in Guam and where he fought. The map was on the back cover of a folder given to Diane Loeffler when she taught on Guam (Photo by Kent Dozark).
After fighting on Bougainville, Ed Mahoney’s next stop was Guam. He arrived there in July 1944. This reporter lived on Guam from July 1989 until June 1990. Since the island is only 212 square miles, I knew the locations where he fought, the terrain and the tropical climate. I was able to tell him about the museums, artifacts, remaining Japanese guns, and the island’s recovery. On one “boonie stomp” (USO organized hikes which were open to anyone on the island who wanted to participate), I hiked and waded one of the routes where the U.S. Army soldiers invaded the island. I learned that route was parallel to where Ed Mahoney’s unit entered the island. He describes the battles and also the followup “sweeps” of the island. “We stood Marine to Marine to Marine.” Mahoney says, “Guam is the one that sticks most in my mind because we moved a lot faster there. On Iwo we didn’t get the yardage. The memories of Guam are still there. Memories still flash up sometimes at night. I still remember most of it. I remember seeing Agana [the capital]. There were only a few buildings left.” Mahoney says, “The Japanese attacked at night. We attacked during the daytime.” There were many Banzai attacks on Guam and Saipan. During the battles, the Navy set off star shells to illuminate the sky. This helped the soldiers see who and what was around them. One Japanese soldier used the light from the star shells to pop up, shoot and crouch down. Dozark writes, “Fed up, Ed’s foxhole mate set his M1 on the enemy position. Timing it perfectly, the next time
the Japanese soldier popped up, he was eliminated.” Mahoney says, “On Guam we usually used canister shells. There were 120 little round balls packed in bees’ wax. We [the Marines] were always ahead of the army. One night we killed 42 men. I caught Dengue fever that night. I ran a 102-degree fever. I was taken by jeep to the field hospital, Navy Yards. The hospital was a bunch of tents.” “I was wrapped up in rubber sheets until my fever broke. When I was released, I had to walk ten miles back to his unit. Luckily, I was able to travel part of the way sitting on top of a truck filled with ammunition.” Ed Mahoney was on Iwo Jima for 42 days. He says the battles on Iwo affected him the most. Mahoney says, “On Iwo, combat was so intense and constant with no let-up and no rest. We shot from the hip there, fast. Not from the eye.” He describes the rolling artillery barges. The shells would land closer and closer, then on top of them, then to the rear of them. After a five-minute break, the process would start over again. Once Mahoney was ordered to take a prisoner back to headquarters for interrogation. As he drove the jeep there, other Marines stared in silence. “They didn’t know if they should shoot my prisoner or if they should shoot me for giving an enemy a jeep ride.” One night on Iwo the moon was full and bright. In addition to the light of the moon, Navy star shells lit up the sky every five minutes. Ed Mahoney’s assistant noticed some legs moving in the distance. Ed fired. Five minutes later the next star shell lit up the sky. There was nothing to see. Later he looked toward the
moon. “I saw a Japanese soldier from the waist up. I could see his rifle pointing down toward me. I fired right away.” The second time Mahoney tried to fire, his carbine jammed. His assistant gunner fired at the Japanese soldier. The man dropped out of sight. Mahoney says, “The next thing I heard was him hitting his grenade against his helmet. That was how they activated their grenades. I didn’t know if he was going to throw it at us or hold it against his stomach to kill himself.” He used it to commit suicide. Mahoney says he spent the next fifteen minutes picking off small pieces of the enemy’s flesh. Although the Marines repeatedly attempted to get Japanese holdouts to surrender, none ever did. After many tries, the Marines would block off the cave and hideout entrances with explosives or bulldozers. Typically, a day on Iwo Jima started with 15 minutes of artillery barrage. During one battle, Mahoney threw a grenade and hopped over a wall. He laid flat on the wall above him while the Japanese peppered the air with machine fire. Mahoney thought he was “all shot up” and wouldn’t be able to continue. However, he had been hit by concrete chips, not bullets. He laughed and cleaned off the chips. Mahoney says, “I was never wounded in battle.” Some of his friends were not as lucky. “The uniforms would get so dirty, you couldn’t tell one uniform from another. After someone has been dead a while, you can’t tell from looking at their face either. I came across a body. I knew it was one of ours because of the canvas leg wraps. The Japanese still wore the leg wraps or bindings [puttees] that all the soldiers did in WWI. I got closer and looked at the dog tags. It was one of my friends.” While on Iwo Jima, Mahoney watched the flag being raised
Ed continued on page 21.
Answers to Puzzles on Pages 26 and 27
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BOOK REVIEW Constantly Asking What If? A conversation with local author Linda Bleser By Andrea L.T. Peterson Who among us hasn’t, at some point in our life asked, “What If?” For local author Linda Bleser, who has nearly 20 books and or novellas to her credit, asking “What if?” has been incredibly inspirational. “Reading and writing has always been an escape for me,” she told me in a recent interview. “I’ve been writing as long as I can remember.” A fan of The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, and Alfred Hitchcock as a teenager, she submitted many short stories to a number of magazines geared toward like-minded fans, but her first story actually sold to Housewife Writers’ Digest. That was not a deterrent! She continued writing—everything from romance to mystery to the paranormal. In her 20s, married, and with kids and needing to “get out of the house,” she attended a writers-in-residence workshop at her local Saratoga Springs, NY, public library, led by the wellknown Native American poet Joseph Bruchac. It became clear that she was not going to be a poet, but it was through Bruchac she developed an appreciation for the “cadence and rhythm” of poetry which has since informed the cadence and rhythm of her own prose. In her 30s, Linda joined a romance writers’ group in New York City through which she entered a “love and laughter contest.” She submitted a few chapters, won the contest, then “had to write the book.” While
the win didn’t guarantee a book deal, it did guarantee a read by an editor and consideration for publication. That was her first book, The Chance You Take. More recently, during a particularly engaging documentary about women and the choices they made, Bleser began to ask herself “What if?” She had often pondered such things as “what if there was a fountain of youth? What would you give up to stay young? What would you sacrifice?” But realizing that meeting the man who would be, and still is, her husband turned her life around, she was asking herself “What if I hadn’t gone out that night? What if I hadn’t said yes when he asked me to marry him? What if I had taken a different path?” She considers herself “a short story writer who accidentally writes books,” which might explain why she has published as many novellas as novels! Romances (and erotica) sell, so in a sense, like so many creative types, producing what sells allows her to do what she loves most. In her case, that’s stories with “a bit of mysterious or paranormal elements.” Admittedly, not my first choice of books to read, but when a friend whose recommendations I take seriously suggested I read Bleser’s book, House of Cry, I gave it a try! It grabbed me instantly. I was sufficiently impressed that I recommended it to my Book Club and invited Bleser to speak to our group! It was an all-around success!
Linda’s currently working on two books—one about a woman who has “deeply buried memories of a tragic experience.” In an attempt to retrieve those memories, “she goes into a hypnotic trance and while she’s in the trance, she has a stroke” and she’s stuck there! The second book is a mystery thriller, Dark Heart Island, about a haunted island. In November, her second Christmas-themed book came out. Her first, The Magic Christmas Box was written with the hope of becoming a Hallmark movie, but it wasn’t long enough. When it came out last winter in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, more than a few readers told Bleser "I really needed a feelgood book right now” and The Magic Christmas Box did the trick. This year’s book was in response to a call for submissions to include in an anthology of stories about Christmas cookies! That’s quite a narrow niche, but Kris’s Kringles is Bleser’s story about a man, Kris, “whose grandmother always made him
special Christmas cookies.” His grandmother who has passed always wanted to be included in a recipe book, so Kris decides to enter her cookies in a local cookie contest, except no one has the recipe. Kris hires local single mom and caterer, Sophie Lawson, to recreate the recipe. In addition to these, her novella, Soul Shards, is included in an anthology of paranormal Christmas stories. She muses: what if the Angel of Death is not an enemy to be feared, but a friend and guide to be embraced. Bleser’s Angel of Death tells the novella’s protagonist: “I am the angel of death. The living fear me, but the dead thank me.” Finishing Bleser’s Glory Girls brings this brief adventure full circle! In this novel set in the Catskills in Upstate New York, WHAT IF is given center stage. When it is not just considered, but acted upon, things change. I highly recommend this journey down memory lane with three sisters, The Glory Girls: Andrea, Beth, and Chelsea.
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south County Events
By Debbie Caneen South County Events is provided by Debbie Caneen, Director of Admissions, Sun Towers from items submitted for publication. To submit events for future publications, send them by the 15th of the prior month. Debbie also publishes Ads and Events, a weekly e-mail containing information about what’s happening in 33573. Your event will also appear in the weekly Ads and Events e-mail and on the website www.SCCAdsAndEvents.com. Send all events by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. You only need to submit your Event one time each month for it to appear in both The News of Kings Point and SCC Ads and Events. SPECIAL EVENTS Please include all basic information, especially Price (or list it’s Free) and Contact Information (phone, e-mail, or website). Six lines maximum. Send to: email@example.com. As soon as space permits, we will put it in the weekly e-mail and it will run until event date passes. You do not need to submit it again. P L E A S E N O T E : Th is a r e a is f or SPECIAL EVENTS only. WEEKLY, MONTHLY, or ONGOING EVENTS are listed on our website under WEEKLY & MONTHLY MEETINGS at www.SCCAdsAndEvents.com which is updated every weekend.
TUE. DEC 7 - WWII TRIBUTE AT PEARL HARBOR REMEMBRANCE DAY 10:00 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial Park, a commemoration observing the 80th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor will take place. Part of the planned program is a Tribute to WWII Veterans by a reading of the names of known Hillsborough County WWII veterans. The big problem is gathering the names of Hillsborough County WWII veterans. Since there is no “central’ registry, the only means to do this is by asking military veterans associations, and support organizations, to provide the names of known WWII veterans so the list can be compiled and read at the event. It will be appreciated if you would transmit the names by email to Paul Wheat at “firstname.lastname@example.org”. WED. DEC 8 - SILK SCARF CREATIONS AT THE FIREHOUSE 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Location: Firehouse Cultural Center, 101 1st Ave NE, Ruskin FL 33570. Event type: Workshops & Classes. Love wearing one-of-a-kind, handmade scarves but don’t love their price tag? Super fun
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The News workshop! Dee Hood will show us ways to create beautiful silk scarves, using just a little ink and alcohol. Tuition: $40 per person. Fee covers: You will receive two 8 x 54-inch, 100% silk scarves to make your creations as we know one may need to stay with you. Limited class size. Info: 813-6457651 to register. FRI. DEC 10 - LOW VISION SUPPORT GROUP 1:00 - 2:30 p.m. at Sun Towers Retirement Community 101 Trinity Lakes Drive. Do you wonder how others with Low Vision advance through their day? Be sure to bring your phones, tablets, and other devices for us to assist in using your services. Learn what assistance there may be for you if you have low vision in order to maintain your independence. If you have low vision, then this meeting is for you! Free valet parking available at entrance. Info: Debbie Caneen 813-8922990. SAT. DEC 11 - PHOTO SHOOT FOR PETS AT THE FIREHOUSE 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Location: Firehouse Cultural Center. Event type: Workshops & Classes. Firehouse is hosting a Photo Shoot for Pets! Time Slots are every 20 minutes for Bookings. Event takes place over two days, Saturday, Dec. 11 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Monday, Dec. 13 also same time, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Lunch break is from 12 Noon – 1 p.m. Pet Photos also available on Monday, Dec 13. Please see our Dec 13 Page to book a session on Monday, Dec. 13, 2021, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. “firehouseculturalcenter.org”. Cost: $40 per pet. WED. DEC 15 - HEALTHY BONES FOR LIFE 12:00 noon - 1:00 p.m. Do you know what osteoporosis is? Do you know how to prevent it and how it’s treated? Are you ready to take steps to stay strong and independent for life? Join us for a virtual live talk where American Bone Health Peer Educators will share the basics of bone health and why it should be important to you. Register Here: “americanbonehealth. org/hbfl-tgh-1215”. SUN. DEC 19 - AWARD WINNING TOAST OF TAMPA & HERALDS OF HARMONY 3:00 p.m. at The United Methodist Church of Sun City Center, 1210 Del Webb Blvd. West, welcomes Toast of Tampa and Heralds of Harmony, Tampa’s own internationally acclaimed barbershop choruses. They are a chapter of Sweet Adelines International, and consistently rank as one of Florida’s and
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the world’s top choruses. The Heralds of Harmony, the Men’s Barbershop Chorus has been around for 75 years! And they, too, are acclaimed as one of the world’s top barbershop choruses, having placed in the top ten in Barbershop International competitions. Advance tickets are available for $15 at the church office, 1210 Del Webb Blvd West 8:30 – 4:00 Monday through Thursday. Tickets are also available online at “www.sccumc.com”. Info: 813-362-0956. MON. DEC 20 - PARKINSON’S SUPPORT GROUP OF SUN CITY CENTER 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. at Sun Towers Retirement Community 101 Trinity Lakes Drive, Sun City Center in the theater. Jessica Roca is a Speech-Language Pathologist who works with geriatrics to improve speech and language skills, as well as cognition and swallowing.
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Jessica’s passion is working with older adults who are having difficulties with cognitive skills. Jessica will be participating in the December Parkinson’s Support Group meeting to help members learn how to navigate and download applications on their personal electronic devices. Jennipher Lenoir, COTA with Sun Towers Outpatient Therapy Department will facilitate. This meeting will concentrate on the importance of daily exercises to improve functional movement to complete all basic activities of daily living from the perspective of occupational therapy, physical therapy, and speech therapy. If you have Parkinson’s, or are caring for someone with this disease, be sure to attend this support group! Complimentary valet parking available at entrance. For additional info, call Debbie Caneen 813-892-2990.
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Tall Ship continued from page 1. to Baltimore and began an extensive four-year service life extension project. Each year, Eagle will spend six months in the Coast Guard Yard Facility. The goal of this maintenance overhaul is for the ship to remain safe and viable as the Coast Guard’s premier training vessel well into the Eagle has offered generations of Coast Guard Academy cadets, and more recently officer candidates, an unparalleled leadership experience at sea. They are always looking forward to
ED continued from page 16. tremendous voyages of safe and exciting sailing, hard work, and in-depth leadership training with the future officers of the Coast Guard.
Ed Mahoney’s stories were fascinating. We sat in Community Hall’s entrance area for almost three hours. (Photo by Kent Dozark)
from the deck of his troop ship. Mahoney collected several “souvenirs” during his time on the islands. He also had a Japanese flag, gold teeth, a coin purse and a blood-soaked flag from Iwo Jima (Mahoney washed out the blood). Over the years, most of these items disappeared. Mahoney suspects his sons and
their friends played with the items and lost them. Mahoney was able to hang on a Japanese postcard which had been addressed but never mailed. He is hoping that Mike King, an author and historian known for his time on The Real History Channel, will be able to reunite the card with the family of the man who wrote it. After serving in the war, Mahoney says, “I married a girl from my hometown. Later, I joined the National Guard for three years. Then we came to Florida.” He worked for his father’s automotive repair shop for 13 years before moving to Florida in 1958. He worked at a phosphate company until 1985. Mahoney and his wife raised four children. Twenty-two years ago, Ed and Dessie moved to Sun City Center. He was active in the Leatherneck Club. Recently that club joined with another military group. Until two years ago, he was playing golf. If you have a chance to meet him, ask him about his experiences. He has so many stories to share.
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SCC Salutes Our Veterans
By Kai Rambow While many of us paused to remember on November 11, many of us in attendance at Sun City Center’s ceremony won’t forget this year’s ceremony. The Grand Marshal, Cpl. Edward Mahoney, had a storied enlistment during WWII. Retired LTC Paul Wheat recounted Mahoney’s distinguished and impressive service. This was followed by honored speaker SGT Theodore James Van Aulen. Van Aulen shared stories about his scout dog Warlock. Van Aulen shared how scout dogs saved many lives in Vietnam. It was touching, memorable and moving. There was a collective gasp from the
Statue of Warlock at our veteran’s memorial.
audience when they learned Warlock died of heat stroke after much faithful service. Van Aulen kept everyone’s attention from start to finish and received a standing ovation. This was certainly a ceremony to remember.
Distinguished veteran Edward Mahoney acknowledging the audience’s applause for him.
‘Tis the Season
By Andrea L.T. Peterson Ahhh! My favorite time of the year: yard sales are in full swing and area churches have their awesome annual or biannual sales. St. Andrew Presbyterian Church’s event this weekend did not disappoint. Church member and deacon Carol Slagle, an antiques dealer and holder of estate sales in her prior life in Pittsburgh, has been coordinating the event for the better part of the past decade. With the help of only 15-20 volunteers, “without whom she could not have done it,” the week prior was spent organizing, setting up and taking on the enormous task of pricing the many, many items for sale. In addition to the great merchandise for sale, a smaller room is dedicated to the bake sale where a tasty assortment of homemade treats is for sale. “Nothing store bought” is sold, says Slagle. Volunteer Evelyn McLean has been working the annual sales
Carol Slagle, left, and Evelyn McLean.
for almost as long. Head of the stewardship committee, Evelyn’s domain is “the money.” Evelyn also volunteers at the Nearly New shop in town, and the SCC library. Whatever doesn’t sell at the sale gets donated to the Salvation Army, so nothing gets wasted! On December 4, St. Andrew will be having a Rock’n & Roll’n Art and craft fair with antique car display from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. A great opportunity to do some holiday shopping, don’t miss this fun event. St. Andrew is located at 1239 Del Webb Blvd West.
Theodore James Van Aulen sharing stories about Warlock, his scout dog in Vietnam.
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Manatee Memorial Hospital Offering Shockwave Technology to Treat Calcified Coronary Plaque
Manatee Memorial Hospital is now offering severely calcified coronary artery disease patients a new treatment option that uses sonic pressure waves to safely break up calcium blockage that can reduce blood flow in the heart. The new shockwave technology, also known as intravascular lithotripsy or IVL, allows physicians to fracture the problematic calcium using sonic pressure waves - so that the artery can be safely expanded, and blood flow is restored with the placement of a stent and without unnecessary complications. S. Jay Mathews, MD, performed the first case with our Heart and Vascular team in August. James Nguyen, MD, Anthony Pizzo, MD, Enrique Rivera, MD, Jeffrey Rossi, MD, and Gino Sedillo, MD, are also trained in this procedure. Currently the hospital has completed 55 procedures.
“Our cardiology team is steadfast in our commitment to give our patients access to the latest cardiovascular innovations to treat heart disease,” said Tom McDougal, CEO, Manatee Memorial Hospital. “It is exciting to be able to offer this treatment option to our patients with severely calcified coronary artery disease.” Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. Each year, more than 600,000 people in the United States die of heart disease. As people with heart disease, specifically coronary artery disease, grow older and their disease progresses, plaque in the arteries evolves into calcium deposits, which can narrow the artery. Physicians often use stents to open an artery, and of the approximately one million patients that undergo a stent procedure each year.
A Story of Love and Locks
By Andrea L.T. Peterson Once upon a time and long ago, in a faraway land… there was a key shop. Yup, I said a key shop: Ferdie’s Key Shop, established in Norton, Massachusetts, and shortly after settled in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Ferdie was an enterprising businessman, successful in his own right. At some point he decided to train his daughter, Yvonne, to be a locksmith. He acquired an old bus that he converted to a mobile locksmith shop, and it became Yvonne’s on-the-road shop. According to his grandson Fred’s wife and business partner, Virginia, “the long-legged beauty did a great business!” A novelty, she was the first female mobile locksmith in the country. Fast-forward to the 2000s. Ferdie’s grandson, the aforementioned Fred, was having life-threatening health problems and after being urged to relocate from New England to Florida, he contacted a friend who lived in Ellenton. The friend put him in touch with a woman, Virginia Herdman, who would become first his landlady, then his wife. Fred and Virginia, his “short-legged beauty,” married and moved to Sun City Center. Virginia knew Fred, a thirdgeneration locksmith, had to find something to keep him busy. While he sat at home, she would drive around town taking it all in. She spied the locksmith shop at the east end of the Sun City Center Plaza. The shop had its own history. The original shop was a cleaning service in Apollo Beach. The owner, Dick, a machinist at heart, “got into keys,” says Virginia. He eventually sold what had become Bay Service Locksmiths to the Rev. Johnny Cook, who owned it at the time Virginia stumbled upon it. At home, she casually mentioned taking a ride around town with Fred and as they
News of Freedom Plaza
By Peggy Burgess “The more things change, the more they stay the same”. That adage definitely applies to the Christmas spirit of Freedom Plaza! Last year’s drastic social changes due to Covid restrictions failed to daunt that spirit, and this year’s crowded Christmas calendar proves that it is still very much alive. One significant sign of that is a renewal of bus excursions to area holiday events. These will include our usual trip to celebrate with the Ditchfield Family Singers in their enjoyable and meaningful Christmas Show. Another favorite jaunt, though fairly new to the agenda, is the “Symphony of Lights” at Wiregrass Shopping Mall in Wesley Chapel. The latter affords residents an opportunity for dining out and shopping as well witnessing live music, costumed characters and a dazzling light display... plus a snowfall! Time-tested merriment like the Holiday Sing-Along in the Atrium and individual parties for special groups, though all to be enjoyed with healthawareness, assures residents that Christmas is, indeed, on the way. New to seasonal festivities this year is the Holiday Wine Tasting and 50/50 raffle event sponsored by the Freedom Plaza Scholarship Fund, Inc. Residents who buy $25 in
raffle tickets are invited to an exclusive wine tasting experience complete with a power-point presentation of the wines as they are sampled. Also new this year is an event called “Tinsel and ‘Tinis”. Residents are encouraged to “dress to the nines” when attending this gala that features martinis in myriad forms. These include concoctions such as: eggnog martinis; candycane martinis and mistletoe martinis—plus a coffee bar-all accompanied by hors d’oeuvres. The event’s highlight is a concert of Christmas music by a six-piece ensemble. Certainly not new this year, nor any year, is our annual New Year’s Eve Bash. Its new location worked so well last year that the event will again be held in the main-floor Atrium with tables set, also, on the second-floor mezzanine. Along with a cash bar (and one comp ticket per resident), it will offer live music and dancing, plus snacks, party favors and, of course, a champagne toast at midnight. When, on December 6, our 29th traditional tree-lighting ceremony officially opens our Holiday Season for 2021 it will be a testimony to the indomitable Christmas spirit that has prevailed, and will continue to do so... regardless of any changes that may come about...at Freedom Plaza.
YOU’VE ALWAYS TAKEN CARE OF YOUR FAMILY. toured, she seemed to take conspicuously long in front of the locksmith shop. Once he saw it, Fred’s eyes lit up. He decided to go in and offer to “help out” a few days a week. A few days a week soon became full time. He hadn’t told Johnny about his lifelong romance with keys, locks, and safes. On one occasion, on a job, Johnny looked at Fred and asked, “How long have you been doing this?” “About 50 years,” replied Fred. According to Virginia it’s more like 60 years. “Fred grew up,” she told me, “on the floor of the locksmith shop with keys and locks for toys.” “It’s true,” confirmed Fred. It wasn’t a month before Johnny offered Fred, a master locksmith and certified safe technician (he’s also a security consultant), the opportunity to run the business for him. In 2019, he and Virginia bought the business and Fred is like a kid in a candy shop! While we talked, Virginia told him that a safe dial he had been waiting for had arrived. To say he was thrilled is an understatement! His excitement that he could do the waiting job—a safe, his favorite thing—was palpable! “I love it,” he told me. When it fades,” he added, “I’ll move on.” I don’t see that happening anytime soon!
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Baby Brother Brings Back Gold
By Kai Rambow What would you think is a likely emotion after winning two gold medals at the Tokyo 2020 (2021) Olympic games? Elation? How about gratitude. “My coaches and I won the gold,” mentioned Bobby Finke in a recent interview after returning home to Clearwater. Finke won a gold in the 800-meter freestyle and another gold in the 1500-meter. He also expressed gratitude to his parents, “the financial support, driving me to practice at four in the morning, taking me to swimming meets in the state. Having them by my side, it means the world. I have a lot of support. I’m just super grateful for them.” Swimming is a family affair. Finke’s mother swam for Ball State, his two sisters swam, one for University of Florida and the other for Florida State, and his father coaches swimming in Saint Petersburg. When asked if his sisters have any more respect for him, Finke replied, “still the baby brother, they have age over me.” Despite the time difference, Finke’s sisters watched the race
Bobby Finke (Photo by Mike Lewis/ USA Swimming).
Bobby Finke during a practice session (Photo by Mike Lewis/USA Swimming).
live. Nesty, one of the coaches, had them on the phone so they were able to talk to Finke immediately after the race. “They were so excited; my dog was reacting to them.” Finke mentioned how he always competed with his sisters. In the moment, all the hard work often gets overlooked by viewers. Finke has been swimming before he went to school, and competing at age six. A typical training day consists of arising at 5 a.m., eating a small breakfast, then swimming for two hours. Additional workouts
Parkinson’s Support Group
By Diane M. Loeffler If you have Parkinson Disease (PD) or you are caring for someone with PD, there is a support group right here in Sun City Center. The PD Support Group meets at 1:30 until 3:30 p.m. on the third Monday of the month at Sun Towers. When you attend, be sure to use the side entrance. This entrance is the closest to the theater where they meet. There is usually valet service at this entrance on meeting days. The Parkinson’s Support Group is facilitated by Sun Tower’s Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant (OCTA) Jennipher Lenoir. Every month a different speaker comes to address different issues related to Parkinson’s. Some of the areas addressed in past meetings include adaptive equipment, sleep quality, traveling with special needs, voice, swallowing changes, posture, and physical therapy. During and after the meetings, anyone in attendance may ask questions of the speaker and of the facilitator. People share what has been helpful for them and talk about concerns. Facilitator Jennipher Lenoir, OCTA, is a great resource. She is certified in LSVT and LSVT BIG. LSVT is a treatment for speech disorders that focuses on increasing loudness. LSVT BIG helps improve motor function and assists with slowing further progression. Both small and large motor control are addressed. Inez Hanson-Minto attended the October meeting with her husband, Samuel Minto. They moved here from New York in 2013 and have attended the meetings since 2015. She says, “Many people don’t realize
that Parkinson’s affects the whole body, not just shaking like Mohammed Ali. It affects Samuel’s speech, swallowing, and body functions.” Inez Hanson-Minto says, “My husband can do anything. It just takes him a long time. I tell him to do things well in advance. Taking care of him is an all-day thing. So far, we have no home help, but eventually he will have an aide. This group let us know about services that can help him.” Debbie Caneen is the President of the South Shore Coalition for Mental Health and Aging and the Director of Admissions for the Sun Towers Retirement Community. She says, “Our Parkinson’s Support Group is the largest group with over 150 members. Not all attend meetings, but they do receive month updates of the speakers and attend based on interest level. The group is sponsored by the Men’s Club.” If you are interested in attending a Parkinson’s meeting, contact Debbie Caneen by calling 813.892.2990 or by emailing her at “DCaneen@ SunTowersRetirement.com”. In your email, be sure to specify your interest in the Parkinson’s Support Group since Caneen coordinates several other support groups as well. If the meeting needs to be canceled for any reason, you will receive an email telling you it won’t be held. In the past, some in-person meetings were not held due to COVID concerns. You don’t have to figure everything out on your own, attend the Parkinson’s Support Group to learn more and to receive the support of those who understand your experiences.
for weights might happen later in the day. After swimming practice at UF, then it’s been attending classes. Finke is studying construction management because he has an interest in building stuff. Another two-hour swim practice in the afternoon before dinner. Homework followed by a little personal time to relax. Finke loves to unwind watching movies. The US swim team prepared in Hawaii before the Olympics. Covid meant the team kept to themselves, but Finke noted he
really enjoyed hanging out with other swimmers and playing ping pong with them. Memorable moments outside the pool included seeing Yao Ming, the 7-foot, 6-inch tall basketball player. The skateboarders “were skateboarding through the village, doing all kinds of tricks as they went.” When Finke won the 800, it “was a massive surprise. I consider the mile my best event. The 800 was sweeter.” It’s fun to get the athlete’s perspective. We thank Bobby for sharing with us and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.
Just Around The Bend
By Andrea L.T. Peterson I really didn’t expect any surprises hunting around the Big Bend/301 intersection for new and exciting places to dine, but I sure found one: Grain & Berry. I’m not a vegetarian, and I usually don’t like the kinds of foods that generally fall under the umbrella of either health foods or vegetarian. So, I rounded up my vegetarian friends and took them, one at a time, to the Grain & Berry located on the west side of US-301 just north of the Big Bend. On the first visit I tried the Avo Got Crunch flatbread: Marinara, mozzarella, feta, baked avocado slices, cherry tomatoes, arugula, olive oil, sea salt, and pepper on a cauliflower crust. It was pretty good. The second time I tried the Meat Your Heart Out quesadilla: much of the same ingredients, but plant-based sausage instead of the avocado and feta. That was really good. I was sold. They taste pretty much like a pizza. If someone didn’t tell you, you wouldn’t know the sausage wasn’t “real” or the flatbread or quesadillas were cauliflower. You also have the option of a broccoli crust, vegan cauliflower crust, and vegan mozzarella. You can get a breakfast avocado toast, fruit smoothie or
juice, and more. They also have a small assortment of water and flavored water drinks. The last restaurant we found, The Fried Flavor (between the new Goodwill store and The Asian Yummy House on Big Bend Rd.), had only been open a week. The signs indicate that they have wings and Philly cheesesteaks, but once inside the menu offers quite a few other choices like a hamburger, tilapia or shrimp with fries, or a gyro. You can get a fountain drink or a canned soda. They were seriously short staffed—still hiring—and still getting the interior up to snuff. There are only four tables for dine-in-eating, but the food was good and it was promising. If you’re aware of any other new and interesting dining options Just Around the Bend, let us know and we’ll check them out and share them here.
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