Ocala Style October '19

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OCT ‘19




25-69 ACRES- CLOSE TO WEC: Once you stand on the expansive front porch of this charming southern-style home and take in the flawless view of Granddaddy Oaks, rolling hills, and lush pastures, you will know you’re home. Equestrians will delight in the 2 show quality stables, each are Call for Options complimented by beautiful 1/1 apartments. Third barn provides storage for hay, feed, and equipment. Property can be divided.

TWELVE PALMS: NW Location, close to World Equestrian Center, HITS, and more. 20 Acre farm with 3/2.5 home with open floor plan, $1,395,000 5-stall barn and 3 lush paddocks.

PRIVATE 20 ACRE ESTATE: 5,000 Sq ft. home, meticulously designed inside and out. Exquisite salt-water pool with pavers, full $1,795,000 outdoor kitchen perfect for entertaining.

SIGNATURE STALLIONS: Strategically located close to WEC & HITS. Main office with reception area. 8 Stall show stable plus separate 4 stall barn. $1,299,000 5 board fencing with well- planned paddocks. 9.82+/- Acres

PERFECTLY SITUATED ON 19 ACRES: Two stables - 26-Stalls Including 2 foaling stalls, office, feed room, A/C tack room. 1/1 Apartment. Lit Arena, Irrigated round pen, Euroziser plus 4-bay shop. $579,000

LOCATION PLUS EXCEPTIONAL OFFERING! : For those who desire an elegant country house with exquisite equine facilities as well as the conveniences to town! This home is situated on 5.25+/- acres with additional 5 +/- acres available. Spacious 3 Bedrooms, 2 bath home, sports formal dining, formal living, expansive open kitchen/family room with stone fireplace, beamed ceilings, and lots of floor ceiling windows. Outdoors is an entertainer’s dream with mature Live Oak trees, lighted rubber surfaced stadium tennis court, 4 stall show stable with apartment, covered horse trailer & RV parking, professionally designed dressage cushion arena, pool, large detached workshop. $799.500

If you’re considering buying or selling, give us a call today! List your property with Joan Pletcher... Our results speak for themselves.

For these and other properties, visit JoanPletcher.com for information, videos and more choices. Call or Text: 352.266.9100 | 352.804.8989 | joan@joanpletcher.com | joanpletcher.com Due to the privacy and at the discretion of my clients, there are additional training centers, estates and land available that are not advertised.



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Our Ocala Supercenter, which opened in December 2018, has over 600 RVs in stock and a friendly staff ready to assist you. From parts and service to sales and financing, we can help with every step of your ownership experience. Conveniently located off I-75, this store is just a short drive away from numerous resorts, theme parks, golf courses, beaches, and more.

We Can Win This Beat Breast Cancer With 3D Screening For superior accuracy and a truly “Rosie” outlook, rely on RAO. We are the area’s only full-service women’s imaging center, with 3D mammography, breast MRI, same-day biopsy and fellowship-trained radiologists who subspecialize in women’s imaging for victorious accuracy, forming a united front in the crusade against cancer.

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CONTRIBUTORS JOHN JERNIGAN PHOTOGRAPHER John is a third-generation Ocalan and has been a contributing photographer for Ocala Style since its inception over 20 years ago. John considers himself a photo illustrator and his photography studio on Silver Springs Boulevard carries on a family tradition of award-winning photography and telling visual stories. For this issue, he turned his camera on the haunting Israel Brown House for our Local Lore feature and contributed photos to our Tales from the Altar feature story. LISA MCGINNES EDITOR Lisa loves sharing stories about interesting people in our community. In this issue, she profiled Marge Felix for In the Kitchen With, chronicled fun wedding stories in Tales from the Altar and edited our Health coverage. A published author of two nonfiction books, Lisa has experience in nonprofit public relations and broadcasting. She recently transitioned her role with the magazine to Special Projects Editor and will be spearheading such publications as the Guide to Charitable Giving. SUSAN SMILEY-HEIGHT


Susan is a longtime journalist with a range of experiences in print and digital media, who recently joined Ocala Style as Production Editor. A Florida native with deep roots in Marion and Alachua counties, she loves interesting people and furry animals, and is a full-time Elvis fan and part-time mermaid. This month, Susan explored haunted places for our Local Lore feature, chronicled a recent aid trip in Heart of the Storm and profiled this month’s IHMC Evening Lecture Series speaker.


ADVANCED COMPREHENSIVE CARE FOR YOUR FEET AND ANKLES Treatment of Common Ailments such as Bunions, Hammertoes, Heel Pain, Sprains, Fractures, Athlete’s Foot, Ingrown Nails, Fungal Nails Sports Injuries Children’s Foot Care Custom Orthotics Diabetic Foot Care Warts Neuromas Ankle Pain Ulcers






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LAURA VENOSA FOOD CONTRIBUTOR Laura works out of her studio cottage nestled on a farm in the heart of horse country. Laura creates distinctive and highly sought after heirloom pottery that has been featured in such publications as The New York Times, Romantic Country, and Victoria Magazine. For this issue, she baked up a delicious and seasonal pumpkin boule bread for our readers. Laura loves cooking, creating and living the country life with her family and three chihuahuas, Ellie, Jerry and Mickey.

Dr. Andrew Franklin, DPM, PHD

Dr. Sheila Noroozi, FACFAS

Dr. Kathleen Telusma, AACFAS

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Publisher’s Note

his month marks my one-year anniversary as publisher of Ocala Style. This magazine’s long-standing mantra of “Real People, Real Stories, Real Ocala” has always guided my decisions about what aspects of the magazine we kept the same and what we set out to improve. Our team took on the magazine’s 20th year determined to increase the quality and authenticity of our content by relying more on original imagery by local photographers than stock photos and challenging our writers to dig deeper. I admit that taking on greater responsibility for the quality of content that we put out was not without pains. But what we have evolved into through these growing pains is something that keeps me very excited about the future of this magazine, because our efforts have brought both fresh and established talent to the table. In that regard, take a look at our masthead to check out some of the new names working hard to deliver a community magazine that we’re proud of.

October is a great month to live in our town. The art season kicks into high gear, the weather gets cooler and everywhere you go there is pumpkin something or other. Although the temperatures aren’t cool enough for fall fashion as the rest of the world sees it through the pages of Vogue, our resident fashionista, Maureen Fannon, scoured our town and found fall fashion to inspire Marion County women and help them embrace this change of season with a little more style. On page 50, we offer you some stories of memorable weddings, where the bride and groom did it their way, sometimes bucking tradition altogether or dealing with unexpected elements. We hope the stories serve as inspiration and reinforcement to future brides and grooms that it’s okay to make your wedding just as individual as your partnership is.

While our goal every issue is to reflect and inspire you, we wouldn’t be good friends if we didn’t encourage you to also take good care of yourself. So we’re encouraging you to pursue annual mammograms and be informed about the mental health support resources available within our community. Please join us in resolving to talk more openly about these subjects in hopes of alleviating fear that could prevent our loved ones from being proactive in their care. Finally, please accept our invitation to swing by the Ocala Style tent at the downtown Fine Arts For Ocala Art Festival the weekend of October 26th and 27th. The team would love to meet you in person!

Jennifer Hunt Murty Publisher

October ‘19


C O N T To wn














An emotional 9/11 tribute, helping animals and live theater ranked among the top events for Ocalans last month.

Our guide to some great upcoming events.

Cinematographer Mark Emery dives into the Silver River.

Katie examines the way Millenials really feel about communications.

School news from Marion County Public Schools.

Get a glimpse into the most special days of local brides and grooms.


Co u ntr y





This unique breed is a living historical artifact from the 1500s Spaniards.

Karen Rohlf offers riding instructors and trainers a new perspective on the business side of horses.

S ty le





We’ve got our eye on the essential fashions for fall.

Meet the talented local photographer with style to burn.

E N T S Tab l e


IN THE KITCHEN WITH MARGE FELIX This passionate event designer invites you to pull up a chair, forget formal dining and dig into some serious comfort food.

75 76

Ar ts






Using found objects and inspiration, this Ocala artist creates beautiful treasures from trash.

Baking maven Laura Venosa shares her tasty recipe for pumpkin boule bread.

DINING GUIDE A guide to some of the area’s best eateries.

The Pop Art movement is now over 50 years old and it’s still vibrant and intriguing.


DAY IN THE LIFE We invite you to see our community through the lens of our talented contributing photographers.






Despite a painful loss, one woman’s family and friends channelled their energy into a mission to help women with breast cancer.

Recent renovations and an expansion of AdventHealth Ocala’s ER puts patient privacy and safety first.


THINK GREEN FOR MENTAL HEALTH October 6th to the 12th marks Mental Illness Awareness Week and we’re offering up expert advice on how to manage mental health issues successfully.

ON THE COVER: Olivia Della Porta of Michele Pommier Models at the Israel Brown House. Photography by John Jernigan

October ‘19



Photo By Dave Miller









The most haunted places near and far.

Romantic gestures, unexpected moments and gas stations? Fun wedding stories and sentimental memories from local couples.

Photographer Dave Miller journies to the Bahamas with lifesaving supplies from caring Ocalans for the victims of Hurricane Dorian.





October ‘19



The Social Scene Tatiana Domenech and Squishy were all smiles at the 5th Annual Saving Paws and Hooves Festival, where a good time was had by all and vital funds were raised for animals facing life-threatening medical issues. Learn more at www.maricampanimalhospital.com/ about/saving-paws-hooves/ Photo by Dave Miller


Stephanie Hernandez and Okalani Pinero

Elio Piedra

Rene Zamot, Kathy Otero

SPAH 5th Annual Festival MARICAMP ANIMAL HOSPITAL Photos By DAVE MILLER John Velasco

Michael Rullan-O’Brien, Mike O’Brien, William Rullan-O’Brien and Katherine O’Brien


Laurie DiCillo, Kristen Beran, Tom DiCillo

The Saving Paws and Hooves Team



aricamp Animal Hospital hosted the Saving Paws and Hooves (SPAH) Annual Festival on Saturday, August 24th. SPAH helps pets who are in “life and death” medical situations and pet owners for whom finances are a barrier to lifesaving care. Guests enjoyed catering by Moe’s Southwest Grill, wine from Island Grove Wine Company, and such activities as a painting class led by Madai Lopez and musical entertainment by Elio Piedra.

Alberto Rullan and Katherine O’Brien

Kristen Beran and friend doing a happy dance

Real People, Real S tories, Real O cala

Gabbie Keefe

Judith Bullen and Audley McLean

Corbin Guy


Carter Main, Debbie Maine, and Katrina Ploof, Interim Executive Director of Ocala Civic Theatre


Santana Garret Avner and Jeremy Avner

n August 29th, Ocala Style and the Ocala Civic Theatre served up some delicious chocolate cake, created by Chef Albert of Stella’s Modern Pantry, to dozens of guests hungry to see the premiere of Matilda: The Musical. Those familiar with the story will remember a key scene involving a very tempting piece of chocolate cake. Visit us online for Chef Albert’s recipe. For show information and tickets, visit www.ocalacivictheatre.com

Chef Albert’s Matilda-Inspired Scrumptious Cake

Four generations - Linda M. Smith, Venieza Schwanke, Holly Benitez, and lead actress Alexis Benitez

Curtain Up on Matilda

Goodies for Guests

Scott and Melissa Nadenik

October ‘19





he 9/11 Traveling Memorial Wall was exhibited from September 11th-15th, to honor the police officers, firefighters and soldiers lost that day and in subsequent wars. The exhibit included firefighter axes and a New York Fire Department uniform and boots, all a solemn testament to the human spirit. Local supporters included the Florida Highway Patrol, Marion County Sheriff ’s Office, Ocala Police Department, and War Horse Harley-Davidson. Log on to www.ocalastyle.com to view more images from this and other events.

The Traveling Memorial Wall




Honor Guard

Speaker Anna Schultz

Real People, Real S tories, Real O cala

Tributes to our local fallen heroes

Marion County Sheriff ’s Office and Ocala Police Department

Johnathan Rodriguez

The opening ceremony

On view at the memorial

Steve McLain of Marion County Sheriff ’s Office Pipes and Drums

October ‘19



Editors’ Picks A guide to our favorite monthly happenings and can’t-miss events.

First Friday Art Walk Downtown Ocala Oct 4 | 6-9pm With (hopefully) cooler temperatures coming this fall, the First Friday Art Walk is a delightful way to spend an evening. Artists set up tables and booths to show off their wares, the square has live entertainment, and all sorts of art activities are going on. Shops stay open late to serve you. Grab a bite to eat, enjoy the entertainment, and stroll through the festivities. For more information visit: www.ocalafl.org

Brick City Carnival Brick City Adventure Park Oct 12 | 5-8pm The second annual Brick City Carnival once again fills Brick City Adventure Park with familyfriendly entertainment, carnival games, and, of course, candy! Free to all, food and drink will be available for purchase. Costumes are encouraged, but organizers request that they be in tune with the family-friendly vibe, so nothing too gruesome or adult themed. For more information, please contact the Marion County Parks & Recreation main office at (352) 671-8560 or email parks@ marioncountyfl.org 22


Dining in the Dark The Hilton Ocala Oct 18 | 5:30pm The Florida Center for the Blind hosts this annual fundraiser featuring food service by Marion County Sheriff ’s Office and Ocala Police Department SWAT teams. Event hosts work hard to create a light-free environment to create empathy for the blind and experience the world as the vision-impaired have to deal with it. SWAT members wear night vision goggles and use infrared tools to serve and maneuver, and attendees eat in complete darkness. The secret menu and charity element make this a can’t-miss event. For more information, www.flblind.org/Dining-in-the-Dark.html

Marion County Halloween Run Paddock Mall Oct 26 | 4pm Be part of Season 4 of the Big Hammock Race Series (BHRS) and help the Marion County Children’s Alliance. This is race #4 of the yearlong series, and you can choose either a 5K or 10K route. Medals go to the top finishers, by age and category. The BHRS is a statewide award-winning series of foot races and nonprofit organization with a mission to make walking and running fun and to inspire participants to reach their fitness goals. For more information, visit www.bighammockraceseries.com

Ocala Arts Festival Downtown Ocala Oct 26 & 27 | 10am-5pm Now in its 53rd year, Fine Arts For Ocala (FAFO)’s Ocala Arts Festival will offer patrons all types of artwork to peruse and a chance to interact with the artists, as well as festive live performances and some great area food vendors. There are even student art exhibits from public and private schools in Marion County. Additionally, five new emerging artists have been sponsored by the David and Lisa Midgett Foundation. This program supports artists who are new to showing their work to buyers. This year mixed media artist Michelle McDowell Smith is the festival’s featured artist. For more information, visit www.fafo.org


The Perfect Fit for Anyone’s Lifestyle!

Loving Vincent Nov 5 Appleton Museum of Art | 2pm College of Central Florida, Building 8, Room 100 | 7pm The fifth film in the 2019-2020 CF International Film Series is one of the most intriguing documentaries ever to be released. Loving Vincent is an animated film comprised solely of oil paintings done by 125 professional oil painters who traveled to Poland and Greece to participate in the film’s production. The award-winning film tells the story of Vincent van Gogh and his mysterious suicide through animated paintings. For more information about this and other films in the series, visit www.cf.edu/community/arts/international-film-series


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October ‘19


Recreation & Parks Live. Play. Prosper.

Ocala Recreation and Parks has a variety of programs and services to meet your leisure service needs - Programs for the young and the young-at-heart; for those who enjoy being active or just want some down-time; programs for all ages! We have indoor and outdoor programs where we can guide you or you can guide yourself. This is your time - and you are the star! Make it meaningful. We invite you, Ocala, to Come Out & Play. AFTER DARK IN THE PARK


Friday, Oct. 4

Saturday, Oct. 26

7:30 p.m.

Hocus Pocus 8 p.m.


Citizens' Circle 160 E. Fort King St.

Ft. King National Landmark 3925 E. Ft. King St.



Enjoy a spooky trail and free candy for the kids!

Nov. 9

Tickets on sale:

Oct. 26 6 to 10 p.m.

facebook.com/ocala culturalarts

Ft. King National Landmark 3925 E. Ft. King St.

Tuscawilla Park 1 to 10 p.m.





A River Runs Through It Meet the talented Ocala native who wades into unique perspectives on the Silver River in his homegrown film. By SUSAN SMILEY-HEIGHT


mmy-winning cinematographer, filmmaker, photographer and musician Mark Emery, who has shot footage in locations around the globe, says that among the most beautiful things he has ever seen is the early morning play of fog and light that creates “God rays” on the Silver River. Emery, now 64, has called Ocala home since he was 4 years old. As a young man, he milked venomous rattlesnakes and wrestled toothy alligators at the Ross Allen Reptile Institute, formerly part of the Silver Springs attraction. Emery even piloted its historic glass bottom boats for a couple of years. His work has brought him into a frightening underwater encounter with a 12-foot gator with “his mouth wide open and 2,000 pounds per square inch of crushing power so that’s a big steel trap, loaded, right next to ya,” he says. He has had white tail deer want to pick “a fight” with him, and Florida black bears knocked down his secreted filming blind to lie down and go to sleep on it. His lengthy resume includes work for National Geographic, Discovery, the Smithsonian Channel and the British Broadcasting Company. His abiding love for his hometown led him to make the independent documentary, The Silver River Story.

The film focuses on glass bottom boat captains Roosevelt Faison, Virginia Ferguson, Oscar Collins and Leon Cheatom, with a combined history of more than 200 years on the river. “The film is a way to take a look at something we all kind of take for granted in our backyard,” Emery explains. “And the people who tell the story are people who have been there, some of them as many as 62 years.” The impetus was to “just have them tell their story the way they wanted. They got their chance to have their say and tell what was wonderful there and tell the problems they had with segregation,” he reveals. “What you end up finding out is that the river brought a disparate group of people together and they all became lifelong friends.” The endeavor took several years, between other projects. The premiere took place earlier this year, right here in Ocala. The film does not delve into the environmental issues facing the springs. “This was not that story. It will focus on the people and the

animals they loved, how they found common ground…blacks and whites working together,” Emery asserts. “It’s about the river that brought people together.” Emery’s wife, Mary, whom he met in Alaska, helped on the river film, as she does with many of his projects. “We have a special relationship,” he offers. “We get silly and goofy, but we get it done.” On October 24th, Emery will give a presentation, including showing sections of the film, as part of the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition’s (IHMC) evening lecture series. “This is not something we could have done at Geographic or Discovery because it is so local. We took the technology I learned and rented the same equipment and used the same high-end techniques and applied them to a local story. You can’t usually get any money for that,” he explains. “A lot of people helped us with money. Everybody just piled in and helped out.” As for the future, Emery says with a chuckle that he is busy on some “secret squirrel stuff.” Learn More: › IHMC Evening Lecture Series. › Mark Emery › Thursday, October 24, 6-7pm (doors open at 5:30). › www. ihmc.us › Call (352) 387-3050 to RSVP October ‘19


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Thank You For Not Calling By KATIE MCPHERSON Illustration by MAGGIE PEREZ WEAKLEY


y cousin, Brendan, once likened being called on the phone to someone walking in his front door without knocking. While I don’t feel that strongly about a cold call, I get where he’s coming from. So do most millennials. Forbes says research has found that the phone app—you know, the part of your phone that actually makes and receives calls—is the fifth most used app, well behind social media and texting apps. They conjecture this is because millennials, as a statistically more anxiety-ridden generation, may want to consider their words carefully, which texting and emailing allow for. BGR, a leading online destination for news and commentary focused on the mobile and consumer electronics markets, reports that a survey of 1,200 millennials reported the top three reasons they dislike phone calls. First and foremost, they’re time consuming. Second, the person calling usually needs something from them. And third, they worry that someone will ask them to come to an event they don’t want to attend. That all feels…about right. Calls do tend to take longer, and usually I think, I need you to email some of the info or a document over anyway, so why couldn’t you just put it in writing? It’s also hard to say you’re not feeling well and can’t make it to something with the sounds of happy hour clinking and laughter in the background. I’m not sure if this is universal among millennials, but I feel an unspoken code about calls, texts and emails—the level of urgency of my message directly correlates to how I’m reaching out. If I email you, respond at your convenience. If I text you, I need a moment of your time right now. If I call, I need you to stop what you’re doing because there’s a ravenous zombie horde busting down my door. Unless, of course, you’re a family member, and then I would love a nice

phone chat to catch up, zombies aside. Personally, I rarely even listen to voicemails. iPhones automatically transcribe voicemails and I would rather skim them like a text for the important info. Also, whenever my prescription is ready at CVS, the robot calls to tell me, Kathryn McPherson, to come and get it. But my iPhone transcribes my name as Councilman McPherson. You tell me which version

would make you feel more special. Ultimately, to those non-millennial readers, call or don’t call. Leave a voicemail or don’t. Communicate in whatever way makes you feel most comfortable. Just know, we might text you back instead. So, we’re sorry. We’re working on it. You could also try sending a pigeon. We do love critters, and I’d definitely tweet about that.

October ‘19


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Class Acts

School news from Marion County Public Schools By KEVIN CHRISTIAN, APR , CPRC

Ocala. This year’s event is set for Monday, November 11th at 11am. Join thousands of people and enjoy live bands, patriotic readings, precision drills and patriotic music during this annual celebration.

Maplewood Joins National Walk Day Vanguard High Convinces Voters Vanguard High School convinced more of its students to become registered voters than any other local high school last year. The school claimed the annual travelling trophy as its own thanks to 736 students who registered to vote. The annual competition is coordinated through Supervisor of Elections Wesley Wilcox’s office. He is pictured with VHS Principal Chris Carlisle, accepting the award at a recent school board meeting.

Crowder Named Administrator Leader of the Year Joanne Crowder often works behind the scenes, organizing visual and performing arts opportunities and working with teachers to enrich art and music programs around the district. That’s why she was named “School Administrator Leader of the Year” by the Florida Alliance for Arts Education. Crowder’s position directly supports teachers and is funded by the referendum renewed by voters last year.

This year’s “Walk Your Child to School Day” is set for Wednesday, October 2nd at Maplewood Elementary. Dozens of students and their parents will join together to recognize and avoid dangers during their walk to school. Local first responders set the way for safety, and students learn to recognize what’s dangerous and what’s not. Parents are even surprised sometimes at how quickly their kids stray. The annual event is part of a nationwide effort to keep all kids safe on the walk to school.

Summer Reading Scores Big How fun to reward Michael Long, a fifth grader at Dunnellon Elementary, for reading more myON minutes than any other student this summer! The myON Reader fosters student engagement and achievement and gives students access to thousands of books to read. He logged 7,895 minutes of book time and won a new Amazon Kindle in the process. Superintendent Dr. Heidi Maier personally delivered the prize during a recent surprise presentation.

Schools Serving Others Recognizing Our Veterans Veterans play a pivotal role in our school district thanks to the real-life stories they share with students. That’s why Marion County Public Schools honors our military heroes with the official “Marion County Veterans Day Ceremony” held at the OcalaMarion County Veterans Memorial Park in

Local public schools served as shelters for those escaping Hurricane Dorian, or at least what was projected to be a hurricane in our area. Fortunately, the storm stayed east of us, but still provided ample opportunity to put the safety mindset into practice. Our schools are ready to be used for shelters when necessary. October ‘19


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VOWS We cordially invite you to celebrate Ocala’s newest brides and grooms, get a glimpse into their most special of days and hear firsthand about the memories that will always hold a place in their hearts. Pictured: Ocala Style’s own Dave Miller and his bride Brooke’s destination wedding in Cabo San Lucas.

October ‘19



DAVE & BROOKE MILLER July 18, 2019 Photography by Gonzalo Verdeja Venue: Esperanza, Los Cabos, MĂŠxico Their favorite wedding memory: Celebrating our love and unity in Mexico with the amazing combination of travel, turquoise water, street tacos and tequila. (We came for the tacos.)

ADRIAN & JESSICA CLARK July 27, 2019 Photography by From Within Arts Photography Venue: Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club, Ocala, FL Her favorite memory: Seeing everybody on both sides of the family and seeing the person I was about to marry.




RUSTY & KARI FANKHOUSER March 16, 2019 Photos by Cynthia Lee Photography Venue: Black Diamond Ranch, Lecanto, FL Her favorite memory: “The moment I got to take the slow carriage ride back with my amazing husband—just the two of us as we took it all in on the way to our grand entrance.”

JONAH & KAYLA MUSIC March 30, 2019 Photography by Mahal Imagery Venue: Bellemoor Plantation, Ocala, FL Their favorite wedding memory: Being surrounded by our family and friends as we said our vows as a family of four.

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DERICK & CAYLYN MILAM March 30, 2019 Photography by Dalton R. Hobbs Photography Venue: Black Diamond Ranch, Lecanto, FL Their favorite wedding memory: Getting to share such a special and beautiful day with all our family and friends. We couldn’t have asked for anything that day to be any more perfect.

IAN & JORDAN SAPP June 1, 2019 Photography by Mahal Imagery Venue: Your Wedding Barn, Ocala, FL Their favorite wedding memory: Our private moment before the ceremony. 34


Feet in the sand... drink in my hand... Duggan, Joiner has my TAX PLAN! Tax laws are changing this year. Call us to find out how these changes might affect you.


October ‘19


Ashton · Fuente · La Palina · Montecristo Oliva · Padron · Southern Classic

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352.236.3499 O P EN 7 DAY S A W EEK



Discover a more radiant you at Lift Facial Aesthetics. Board-certified Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner Elizabeth Estes Weldon designed Lift to be an intimate, personalized practice offering Botox®, Jevederm®, Kybella® and other rejuvenating services, applied with a light touch for a soft, natural effect. You’ll also find the finest medical-grade skin care to help refresh, restore and revitalize your image. Trust your face to 13 years of medical training, experience and caring – only at Lift Facial Aesthetics.

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hen the dust settles after the impact, your first instinct after a car accident is to check that you and your passengers are all right. Then, if you’re able, you probably get out of the car to check out the damage and start exchanging information with the other drivers involved. But Greg King, founding member and personal injury attorney at King Law Firm, says these usual first steps should go differently. “Notify law enforcement immediately and, if you’re hurt, go to the hospital by

ambulance. Don’t worry if you need to be transported to the hospital before law enforcement gets there; they’ll be notified how to contact you by EMS personnel. Sometimes, you won’t feel the full extent of your injuries until a few hours to 24 hours after the accident and in that case it’s important you don’t ignore the symptoms and seek immediate medical care.” Auto accidents are required to be reported by law and obtaining an official police report and any photos of the scene will be one of the first steps to take in

handling your claim. Taking an ambulance ensures you get the proper care immediately and helps counteract the at-fault party’s lawyer’s attempt to argue that your medical condition is unrelated to the accident. “If you go to the hospital by ambulance, you are entitled to what is called a ‘summary judgment as to causation’ for the injuries that the hospital and ambulance treat you for,” King explains. “If you’re in an accident and a family member takes you to the hospital, even directly from the scene, summary judgment may not be granted. Also, the longer you wait for treatment, the harder it becomes to prove your injuries were caused by the accident.” The day after the accident, it’s time to take some next steps. King says it’s crucial to follow your doctor’s orders to a “T”, whether picking up prescriptions or making physical therapy appointments. “Not only does this help you on the

path to healing, it also helps us document your injuries and care in the event that we need to bring a legal claim on your behalf against the at-fault party for injuries.” Whether an at-fault party, their insurance company or your own aren’t treating you fairly, seeking the help of a personal injury lawyer allows you to explore your rights. “The majority of people are first-timers in these things; they’ve never been in an accident before and have no idea who needs to be paying for their losses,” says King. “By law, the person who was not at fault in this accident is supposed to be made whole and put back to where they were before the accident, including getting back to their normal state of health, finances and well-being.” King Law Firm 2156 E Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala, FL (352) 629-8747 www.kinglawfirm.org

October ‘19


Coming Soon... The Dirty Doors a tribute

Friday Oct. 25

Two Shows 5:00 PM & 8:00 PM



Celebrating the music of



25The Savannah Center



1545 North Buena Vista Blvd | The Villages, FL Facebook.com/TheDirtyDoors

© 2018 Holding Company of The Villages, Inc., All Rights Reserved.




www.TheVillagesEntertainment.com |


TheVillagesEntertainment 1545 N Buena Vista Blvd, The Villages, Fl | 352-753-3229







Available Now!

at any of The Villages Box Office locations.

Photo courtesy of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park


The Heritage Horse By JOANN GUIDRY

These once-endangered creatures are a tangible link to our rich history.

October ‘19



he Florida Cracker Horse isn’t just any horse. No, this special breed is actually a living, breathing Florida history lesson on four hooves. When the Spanish explorers came to Florida in the 1500s, they brought livestock with them— cattle, hogs, goats and sheep. And when you have livestock, particularly cattle, you need horses to herd them, so they brought those too. These small, sturdy horses with lots of cow sense trace their genetic lines to the Iberian horse of 16th century Spain. The wayfaring Spanish introduced the horse to North, Central and South America, as well as to the Caribbean, Puerto Rico and Cuba. The horses they brought to Florida have a similar genetic base as the Spanish Mustang, the Paso Fino, the Peruvian Paso and the Criolla. When the Spanish left Florida to explore new areas, they left behind livestock, as well as horses, which had to fend for themselves. The descendants of those horses were later captured and used by the Seminole Indians. Over the years, the horses were called a variety of names, including Seminole pony, Chickasaw pony, prairie pony and marsh tackie. Pioneering Florida cattlemen began using the Spanish horses, and they finally got a proper name that stuck. Those early Florida cattlemen were known as Crackers for the cracking sound their whips made

Jack Gillen



I grew up riding these tough little horses that we called Florida cow horses. Later…we realized what they really were. — Jack Gillen

when herding cattle. Soon the name was used for the distinctive horses they rode and thus the Florida Cracker Horse moniker was born. During the Great Depression, horses and cattle were brought to Florida from the Dust Bowl areas. Unfortunately, those animals also brought with them the screwworm parasite that nearly wiped out the Florida Cracker Horse. With the disease and the need for cutting cattle for vaccinations, ranchers started using stronger, taller quarter horses. Only through the efforts of a half a dozen ranching families did the Florida Cracker Horse survive. Over the next five decades, their numbers were few until a group of history-minded horse lovers stepped in. “I grew up riding these tough little horses that we called Florida cow horses,” says Jack Gillen, an original and current director of the Florida Cracker Horse Association. “Later…we realized what they really were. This was in the 1980s. About that time, the state wanted to put some horses at Paynes Prairie, which had been a large Spanish cattle ranch at one time. The idea was to put some heritage animals there, which included Florida Cracker Horses and Florida Cracker Cattle, both which had originally been brought here by the Spanish.” Gillen, the late Bob Berry and some other ranchers who had Florida Cracker Horses worked with the Florida Parks Service and the Friends of Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park to accomplish the mission. In 1985, six Florida Cracker

Horses were released at Paynes Prairie to live wild as heritage animals. The 30 horses currently living at Paynes Prairie are descendants of those horses. They have access to the state park’s 10,000 acres and live with little to no human intervention. The Florida Cracker Horses have become a popular tourist attraction for visitors to the park who are fortunate enough to see them. In 2008, the Florida State Legislature finally officially designated the Florida Cracker Horse as a state heritage livestock animal. “After the Paynes Prairie project, Bob (Berry) thought we should form an association and start a registry to preserve the Florida Cracker Horse,” says Gillen.

Photos by Dave Miller



“With Bob as the first president, we formed the Florida Cracker Horse Association (FCHA) in 1989. We began talking to people, tracking down and collecting history on any possible Cracker horses. We came up with about 30 horses that were the first ones we registered.” In 1991, the FCHA selected 75 horses as foundation horses, with 14 more of their offspring later added. Those horses became the four foundation bloodlines of today’s Florida Cracker Horse, with 1,000-plus horses now registered with the FCHA. And the association now has some 200 human members. As a breed, the Florida Cracker Horse is described as small saddle horse with a

strong herding instinct and good agility over rough ground. They’re typically 13.2-15.2 hands (54-62 inches) tall at the withers (shoulders) with a strong short back and sloping rump. Solid colors like bay and gray are the most common, but they can be any color found in horses. Not all Florida Cracker Horses are gaited, but many are and have a fast walk that efficiently covers a lot of ground when herding cattle. At his Micanopy ranch, Gillen has eight Florida Cracker Horses, including two stallions, three mares and their offspring. And, of course, Gillen uses his horses to work his cattle, which are, yes, Florida Cracker Cattle. His favorite

mount is a 14-year-old gray mare named Cazador de la Vaca, which appropriately enough in Spanish means “hunter of the cow,” Caz for short. “When it comes to working cattle, it’s tough to beat a Florida Cracker Horse. They are smart and can go all day,” says Gillen, whose horses are gaited. “But people use them for trail riding and other ranch horse activities like team penning and sorting and roping. They are very versatile and just a great all-around little horse.” As well as being a unique and ongoing piece of Florida history. Learn More www.floridacrackerhorseassociation.com October ‘19


COUNTRY What inspired you to create this seminar? The same reasons I am inspired to do most things: to help horses have happier lives and to empower people to be the best they can be. When I transformed my own business, I had to learn it from people outside the horse world, then translate it to apply to this niche. I wished I could have learned how to work on my horse business from someone actually in the horse business. This seminar is for people just starting out, for the ones who are already working in the horse business but they know that it’s not going as well as it could, or for people who are totally burned out and know that something’s gotta give. What I teach in the seminar helps them realize their own unique genius and talents, what sets them apart from their peers.

Training the Trainers By BELEA T. KEENEY

“Do what you love, the money will follow.” We’ve all heard that advice. But is it true?


aren Rohlf, author and creator of Dressage Naturally, is an internationally recognized clinician who is changing the equestrian educational paradigm. She transformed her decades of experience as a dressage trainer into a successful global business. Not only does she teach riding students around the world, through her live clinics and virtual programs, she also mentors professionals in the horse industry in her “Transform Your Business Seminar” and her “For the Love of the Horse Mastermind & Mentorship” program. Her next seminar will take place in Ocala, February 12th and 13th, 2020. We chatted with her about her own love for horses and how horse professionals can work smarter.



Just loving horses isn’t enough, is it? It’s the best place to start! Most trainers and instructors I know got into this profession because they love horses. It’s wonderful to get paid to do the thing you love. The danger is that it’s too easy to overdo it. Many of the horse professionals I know are exhausted and spread themselves way too thin. These people are so dedicated to serving students and their horses that they often don’t make their own horses or lives enough of a priority. This is not sustainable. What I love to do is to take these amazing teachers and trainers, who are so giving, and I show them how to give more value to their students, while gaining more time and income for their own lives and horses.

How have you seen the horse business change over the years? I don’t think it has much, and maybe that’s a problem. For sure there are more people offering virtual learning. When I started my first online program back in 2010 there wasn’t as much of that as there is now. But the standard industry model of teaching and training hasn’t really changed. That’s why I also run a mastermind and mentorship program where we all learn to help each other and collaborate instead of always going it alone or competing with one another. How did you come to live in Ocala? I came to Ocala in 2003…to stay for two months to escape training in another New York winter. After six weeks, I called home and said I wasn’t coming back! Ocala is just so special for those of us in the horse business. It’s wonderful to be somewhere where so many people are dedicated to horses. The resources available here are amazing. Outside of horses, I love kayaking on the springs and visiting Ocala National Forest. It’s my home now.


PUT PATRICIA FIRST. Ocala Health has always been here for Patricia. Patricia, a grandmother to seven spends the summer in New York and travels to Marion County with her husband during the winter months. She enjoys swimming, water aerobics, and water Zumba. Because of a recent gastric bypass surgery, Patricia enjoys participating in activities like these even more. Patricia had gotten heavier over the years and considered bariatric surgery when a family member had a successful procedure done. Patricia says, “The team at Ocala Health is fantastic. I couldn’t have asked for better care. I am very impressed with Ocala Health.” In addition to water activities, Patricia was able to walk for three hours around the botanical gardens during a recent trip to Canada. “Three years ago, I would not have been able to do that. I feel great, physically, and have more self-confidence.”

See how we’ve always been here for you too at PuttingOcalaFirst.com.





addock Ridge, newly opened from locally owned Prospéra Communities, is a uniquely distinctive community for assisted living and memory care. A new attitude, a new philosophy and tailored service combine with comfort, luxury and security for just the right balance for families searching for solutions for their loved ones. The community offers four distinct neighborhoods, each with private apartments nestled within its common areas, to create a nurturing, familial setting. The team works closely with each resident, their family and physician to build individual service plans that promote independence and a high quality of life. It’s an atmosphere that lets people feel they’re living at home among friends and family.

• A culture of independence, vitality and social engagement • Comfort, safety, convenience and service • Support that feels like family

Assisted Living Neighborhood

Memory Care Neighborhood

• Assistance with the activities of daily living • Exemplary service from trained professionals • High ratio of staff to residents • Combines privacy, personal assistance and interpersonal connection

• Bringing together residents of similar physical and cognitive abilities • A special emphasis on physical, nutritional and social needs • Promoting moments of success throughout each day • Private apartments with private baths

Adaptive and responsive to each individual.

Appaloosa Assisted Living floor plan

• Warm, inviting common areas that create the essence of home • Indoor courtyard gardens • Refined methodologies, holistic wellness and sensory integration therapies Residents are free to select from seasonal menus and enjoy a neighborhood, familystyle dining experience. Paddock Ridge maintains a full calendar of engaging programs, events and activities. Most important, Paddock Ridge brings a human touch to assisted living and dementia care that makes a remarkable difference for residents and their families. For more information or to schedule a personal tour, please call 1-866-979-8438 or visit www.PaddockRidge.com.

Uncompromisingly person-centered care.

Paddock Ridge 4001 SW 33rd Ct., Ocala 1-866-979-8438 www.PaddockRidge.com A Prospéra Community





L ORE Local lore cites ghostly apparitions in Marion County. By SUSAN G. SMILEY-HEIGHT

Photography, both pages, by John Jernigan


ith morning mist still hanging damp and gray in the moss-laden trees along Northeast Sanchez Avenue on an already steamy September morning, sun rays illuminated the dormer windows and Mansard roof of the historic— and some say haunted—Israel Brown House. The home, at 119 NE Sanchez, one of the oldest in the Tuscawilla Historic District, is among several Marion County properties said to be inhabited by, or to at least receive visits from, ghosts of the past. Those properties include the elegant Victorian manor, The Rheinauer House, at 828 E. Fort King St., near downtown Ocala, which formerly housed the Seven Sisters Bed and Breakfast. While there have been seven distinct spirits identified at the manor, they have all been described as warm and playful— including a flirty Southern gent from the 1950s to the original inhabitants Charles and Emma Rheinauer. Charles was a prominent businessman in Ocala, who, along with his brother, ran a retail dry goods shop that was located on the south side of the town square. Charles became so involved in the community that he went on to become the founder

The Israel Brown House

and director of the first bank in Ocala, was instrumental in establishing the Chamber of Commerce and later became the mayor. In testament to reputed hauntings, the Brown home was featured in the zombieapocalypse film What Tomorrow Brings and The Rheinauer House was highlighted in an episode of Ghost Hunters on the SYFY Channel.

The Brown house is Second Empire style, taken from the reign of Napoleon III. The style is considered a form of “spooky” architecture. The home, currently owned by Joe Critchley, is under renovation. From the red brick accents around the bottom of the home, some dotted with deep green algae, to the heights of the second story, the house

October ‘19


seems to stretch to the heavens. Maybe that’s how the alleged paranormal entities get in. “The house has been called the scariest place in Marion County,” says Critchley. “Many people have asked me, ‘Don’t you worry about the ghosts?’ and I say, ‘Well, if they can’t do housework then I will kick them out.’” The home was built in 1885. The first owners were Julius and Rebecca Israel. The first resident was Patrick Kilpatrick. Several locals have reported seeing lights or figures in windows at times the house was unoccupied. Critchley, 80, a retired engineer who owns a local real estate business, bought the home in 2009. He was busy with other projects and deliberately let the property become overgrown so local filmmaker Bronson Mosley could use it as a set for his zombie movie. Mosley, who grew up in Ocala, was familiar with the home and had heard that a mother and daughter had died there and their ghosts walked the halls. Critchley said he wound up being an extra in the movie, which debuted in 2014. “I was eating dinner and the producer came in and said, ‘Hey, Critch, I need you to go across the street and kill someone,’” Critchley explained. “I played a zombie with blood running out of my mouth.” Critchley said that at one point, a local leader of ghost walks “smudged” the home with burning sage to clear the energy. “I’ve had some of those paranormal experts come through the house. They said there was a lot of energy, but not much negative energy,” Critchley adds. Work yet to be done on the interior includes putting up drywall, installing flooring and painting. Critchley said his goal is to eventually live in the home, ghosts or no ghosts. According to local historian Annabelle Leitner, who lives on a Century Pioneer Family Farm homestead (occupied by a family for at least 100 years) in Shiloh, in northwest Marion County, the county has been a “hot bed” of ghostly tales for many years. She recalls her grandfather, Harry Smoak, relating tales of a huge ball of fire rolling across the top of a high hill near

The Don Cesar Hotel



Local Haunt

The Rheinauer House

Flemington, the legend of a lady in a flowing gown carrying a lantern and searching for her head in a swampy area near that small town and even a body that had been “laid out” for a funeral sitting straight up in the casket. She says “unhappy” things led to unusual things happening at the Price Plantation in Shiloh. Noted Ocala and Marion County historian David Cook has written about the legend of the Oak Hurst Plantation, off of Lake Weir Avenue, noting that “preceding any great tragedy in the Ocala area”, such as the Thanksgiving Day fire in 1883 that destroyed much of downtown, “a riderless white horse would race up to the plantation home, snorting loudly, nostrils distended and covered with dust and sweat.” There have been reports of a haunted doctor’s office in Belleview and, much better known, ghostly sightings of the infamous gangster “Ma” Barker and her son, Fred, who died in 1935 during a dramatic shootout with FBI agents at the home the Barkers were renting on Lake Weir.

Supernatural Sightseeing Ultra-elegant, The Don CeSar hotel and resort in St. Pete Beach opened in the Roaring ‘20s and hosted guests such as F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, who reportedly continue to haunt the first floor ballroom in the vaunted Pink Palace. Thomas Rowe, who built The Don CeSar, fell in love with a beautiful young woman named Lucinda, a singer who starred in one of his favorite operas. Her parents did not approve and separated the couple. Lucinda later died of consumption. Rowe moved to Florida and became a land developer. He built the hotel to honor Lucinda. It is said that his ghost, often seen as a man in a white suit and Panama hat, continues to roam the

If these tales whet your appetite for the macabre, the mysterious or just a spooky-themed night out, the Fort King National Historic Landmark will offer the Fort King Haunted Trail event 6 to 10pm on Saturday, October 26th. The park, at 3925 E. Fort King St., includes a replica fort and interpretive trails. The event, which will include a “fully-themed” trail walk and showing of the movie Hocus Pocus at 8pm, is free to attend. Refreshments will be offered for purchase. Candy will be provided for children. Attendees are invited to dress in costume and are encouraged to wear closed-toe shoes. Guests can bring blankets, chairs, and snacks. A limited amount of bleacher seating will be available. Free parking will be offered at the Duke Energy utility easement .4 miles east of the park, with shuttle service to the fort. To learn more, call (352) 789-7802.

halls, perhaps in search of his beloved. In St. Augustine, founded in the 1500s by Spanish explorers, apparitions are said to abound in forms such as soldiers, a lighthouse keeper, a bootlegging inn owner and jail inmates. Visitors to the famed Castillo de San Marcos report feeling queasy or cold inside the fort, and there are reports of lights shining where there is no electrical connection inside the national monument. For those eager to investigate the supernatural in St. Augustine, a number of ghost tours offer up “frightful” fun. To scare up details for a visit to the hotel or various attractions in St. Augustine, go to www.doncesar.com/ and www.visitflorida. com/en-us/things-to-do/local-experiences/ st-augustine.html

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October ‘19






lanning your wedding? No pressure—just dozens, if not hundreds, of your family members and friends expecting to be wined, dined and entertained…what feels like millions of tiny details to attend to…and it’s supposed to be the most perfect day of your life. What could possibly go wrong? We asked some local couples and photographers to share their favorite stories about unique weddings—some that didn’t quite go as planned and some that did and had an unforgettable element. We learned that sometimes it’s the unexpected that makes a unique and beautiful memory.

October ‘19


Photo by Mahal Imagery

Dancing in the Street

Photo by Mahal Imagery

Guest or Ghost? Ocala photographer Lyn Larson of Mahal Imagery remembers working her first wedding at the historic 1903 Highland Manor Mansion in Apopka. She was photographing the nuptials of Shaye and Michael Milson. “It is impressively unique,” Larson says of the venue. “I immediately fell in love.” But as soon as she went inside she began to feel a little strange. Climbing the stairs, she felt the temperature drop, broke out in a cold sweat and began to feel as though someone was following a bit too closely behind her…just to find that no one was there. The odd feeling continued throughout the day, but only when she was on the second floor of the house. It wasn’t until late in the evening when one of the servers asked her if she’d seen the ghost that her suspicions about the place were confirmed. “At the end of the night, I took one shot of the couple in front of the manor. I looked up at the window and a shadow moved away from the curtain.” When she reviewed that parting shot, Larson saw the haunting face in the second-floor middle window and would later learn there had been many visitors who had similar experiences and claimed to have also seen the original homeowner…who died more than 50 years ago.



When Chris and MaryLei Villella were searching for a venue for their November 2014 wedding, they joked that they should get married in the cul-de-sac in Southeast Ocala where their parents still lived. These next-door neighbors grew up together and started dating after college. When they couldn’t find a venue, they decided the culde-sac was actually a great idea. “Our wedding was the coolest thing I have ever been to,” MaryLei says. “It really turned into an amazing scene.” With 350 guests, the couple held their ceremony in her parents’ front yard and set up the reception in the cul-de-sac, with many special touches, from the market lights to the seating area created with her mom’s living room furniture. Their best surprise was when they drove away in her dad’s vintage convertible—all the neighbors had put up holiday lights early to give them a magical send off. The memory still makes MaryLei a little emotional. “It really was a fairy tale. I never thought it could be that perfect.” Photo by John Jernigan Photography

Mr. & Mrs. Hollywood Adrian and Jessica Clark became “Ocala famous” when the video of his December 2018 surprise proposal at a gas station went viral. The unlikely place had special meaning for the couple who had shared a tender moment there on one of their early dates, and news stations around the region picked up the story. So the vibrant young couple decided to run with it. “Ever since that, it’s kind of been like celebrity status; people recognize us in Ocala no matter where we are,” Adrian explains. The glamorous couple pulled off the fun Hollywood vibe they wanted for their reception—less traditional and more party—by setting up a red carpet with a step and repeat banner like those seen at awards ceremonies and media events. “It was like a party, a red carpet, a social gathering,” Jessica recalls.

Photos by Within Arts Photography

October ‘19


Photo by Brian Sumner Photography

About Face

It’s Like Rain on Your Wedding Day

Like most brides, Elizabeth Fechtel had her big day all pictured in her head and knew exactly what she wanted, according to photographer Brian Sumner. Her groom, Daniel Yawman, felt a bit left out and wanted to help. Finally Elizabeth told him he could be in charge of his socks. “She may have been serious, she may have been sarcastic, but Daniel ran with it and she never gave his socks another thought,” Sumner explains. Before the ceremony, while taking portraits with the wedding party, Daniel prepared his bride for the big sock reveal. “He explained the importance of the task he’d been given and how much effort he’d put into his assignment,” Sumner remembers. “On his count, the groomsmen all raised their pant legs to reveal custommade formal socks with the bride’s face stitched all over them. “Luckily Elizabeth is a good sport and reacted with laughter—she loved the socks!”

“She started laughing,” photographer Barbara Dawson recalls about the bride. She was photographing the outdoor wedding of Ray and Amanda Butterworth in May 2017 at Lake Weir. “It started raining as she and her father were walking down the aisle.” Dawson says a thoughtful guest quickly opened an umbrella over her and her camera so she could keep



shooting. The groomsmen held large umbrellas over the couple throughout the ceremony. “When they finished their vows the rain stopped,” Dawson says. “Amanda said the old saying ‘Rain on your wedding day means good luck’ is what got them through the ceremony.”

Photo by Inspired Photography & Design

Behind the Barn Door “Storybook,” “head over heels” and “wildly in love” is how photographer Isabelle Ramirez describes her friends Trenton and Stefani Penuel, whose destination wedding she photographed earlier this year in the North Carolina mountains. She worked with them to create a special private moment. “Instead of the first look, they opted to use that time for a letter exchange,” Ramirez explains. “Stefani, her mother and I drove down to the barn to capture their sweet moment.” They situated the bride on one side of the barn door, with the groom leaned back against the other side. “The first thing he said was ‘Hi,’ and she responded, ‘We’re getting married today.’” The couple exchanged handwritten letters, reading them silently with tears flowing on both sides of the door. “After they read their letters, they joined hands and prayed,” Ramirez recalls. “It was silently beautiful.”

Risky Business “It was a riot!” photographer Cindy Diaz says of the extra photos she took for local couple Rusty and Kari Fankhouser after their wedding a few months ago. “We went back to their suite to capture some more intimate pictures,” she relates. Then the groom decided to re-enact Tom Cruise’s signature slide

across the floor from the movie Risky Business. “I must say he pretty much nailed it,” Diaz recalls. “He was game for any pictures. I had a blast with this couple. When he said “risky business” I didn’t have any idea he really meant Risky Business!”

Photo by Isabelle Victoria Photography

Photo by Cynthia Lee Photography

October ‘19


2019 Fall Parade 1. Secure Built

The Oaklen 4010 SE 23rd St. Ocala, Florida

J&H Design


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2. Secure Built

Southern Sunrise

4011 SE 23rd St. Ocala, Florida

3. J&H Design & Build Custom Design 11350 NE 36th Ave. Anthony, Florida

4. Boutwell Contracting

The Cypress 1060 NW 46th Pl. Ocala, Florida

5. Triple Crown Homes

The Independence 4684 NW 11th Ct. Ocala, Florida



6. Triple Crown Homes

The Pine

1562 NE 161st St. Citra, Florida

7. MurphyKaufman Builders The Seneca 6557 SE 4th Lane Ocala, Florida

8. MurphyKaufman Builders The Feldon II 6365 SE 12th Lane Ocala, Florida

9. Art of Structure

Modern Cottage 3151 NW 68th Ave. Ocala, Florida

10. Tuscan Home Builders

The Pelago

12525 SW 140th Loop Dunnellon, Florida

of Homes 11. Armstrong Homes

The Vintage 4020 SE 9th Ave. Ocala, Florida

12. Armstrong Homes

The Sawgrass 12355 SE 100th Ave. Belleview, Florida

13. Armstrong Homes


3614 SE 45th Ave. Ocala, Florida

14. Armstrong Homes

Custom Build 714 SE 42nd St. Ocala, Florida

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The Cali

24 Hickory Course Ocala, Florida

16. Bennett Construction

The Summer Wind

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Photographer Dave Miller takes an emotional journey to deliver aid from Ocalans to those hit hardest by Hurricane Dorian. By SUSAN G. SMILEY-HEIGHT




ave Miller’s recollections of helping with relief efforts following the devastation wrought by monstrous Category 5 Hurricane Dorian on The Bahamas includes the amazing resiliency of those who lost so much. The journey for Miller, a contributor with Ocala Style, started at the Ocala International Airport on September 6th, when Gainesvillebased pilot Aaron Nance volunteered to fly lifesaving supplies organized through Steve Ewing with Crossroads Alliance &

Ministries in Ocala to the Abaco Islands in The Bahamas. Ewing arranged for Miller and Don Steiner, a chaplain with the Polk County Sheriff ’s Office, to accompany the supplies, which were loaded on the plane by members of Meadowbrook Church in Ocala. Finding a home base for the relief supplies was the first matter of business for Steiner, who was working with Ewing and Crossroads. Upon arriving in Marsh Harbour, Miller and Steiner found an intact church where they were able to stage the

operation thanks to the church’s pastor (already stateside) and they quickly “loaded that church up” with supplies. But they also visited the site of a nearby church that had been used as a shelter during the hurricane— now almost completely destroyed—where eight residents lost their lives. Among Miller’s poignant memories from the trip was visiting a school where many people had taken shelter from the destruction. He recalls one young man sitting quietly in a chair outside, contentedly

October ‘19




reading a book, while other youngsters played nearby…“just doing what kids do.” As they headed back to the church, they encountered several members of the group World Hope International and transported them back to the school, where together they accessed a locked pump house with a 12 foot by 20 foot cistern full of water. The World Hope International team quickly purified the water with solar-powered desalinization units and began to fill bags with water. They were able to fill a large yellow tank with fresh drinking water and 200 gallon-sized bags for the locals.

“While lying on a cot on the porch of the church…no lights, no electricity, with people rummaging through the supermarket across the street to try and find supplies, I thought, I’m going home to air conditioning and ice water tomorrow,” Miller says. “These people won’t have any of that for a very long time. Every shop, gas station and supermarket was totally destroyed.”

Even so, “the community was so strong, the way they bonded. It was such chaos, but it was organized chaos.” “Ocala really stepped up,” Ewing says. While air operations ended on September 11th after more than 300 flights of direct aid from Ocala and Fort Lauderdale, delivering more than half-a-million pounds of supplies, including a “big donation October ‘19


of meds, such as insulin,� from AdventHealth, Crossroads Alliance & Ministries has shifted to ground and sea logistics and is still accepting donations.



To learn more, visit www. crossroadsam.org/donate. See more of Dave’s photos from the trip on www. ocalastyle.com and follow him on Instagram @dmiller1023

STYLE well-seasoned Fashion Editor MAUREEN FANNON Photographer TIM RUSSELL Hair and Makeup BETHANY ULMER of Just B Hair Studio Assistant Fashion Editor ELIZABETH MARTINEZ Assistant Photographer KOLIN TONEY All models represented by MICHELE POMMIER MODELS

October ‘19


mad for plaid FROM TITLE PAGE: Jacket and halter, odetteboutique.com; Wide band cuff and ring by Kabana,

Gause & Son Jewelers; Model Emma Hammett. UPPER LEFT: Plaid jacket and paisley

shirt by Tommy Hilfiger, Dillard’s;

Fashion glasses Agapanthus; Model Olivia Della Porta. RIGHT: Plaid dress by CeCe and floral earrings, Dillard’s;

Longchamp umbrella, Agapanthus; Model Emma Hammett.



bold for gold Dress, odetteboutique.com; Fashion sunglasses, Agapanthus; Longchamp rose gold bag, Agapanthus; Model Olivia Della Porta.

October ‘19


loving leopard TOP LEFT: Baby blue pantsuit, odetteboutique.com; Leopard turtleneck T-Shirt, Dillard’s; Model, Bo Bay Park BOTTOM LEFT: Jacket, halter and black jeans,

odetteboutique.com; Equestrian cuffs and ring by Kabana, Gause & Son Jewelers; Model Emma Hammett BOTTOM RIGHT: Leopard dress, odetteboutique. com; Longchamp suede shoulder bag, Agapanthus; Model Bo Bay Park



jumping for jumpsuits Black jumpsuit, odetteboutique.com; Longchamp bag, Agapanthus; Model Bo Bay Park

October ‘19


This month, we’re launching a new feature in both our print issue and online that highlights locals with great style. To kick off the series, we chose Filipino-American wedding and portrait photographer Lyn Larson for her high-spirited fashion choices and her infectious energy. Her clients rave about her talent and her caring nature, which they say means that they not only wind up with stunning photos of their special day, but with a new friend—so it’s no wonder that she ranked as one of the top photographers in The Knot’s Best of Weddings 2019 issue. We quizzed this sprightly style savant on some of her favorite things.






Lyn LARSON How do you describe your personal style? I love comfy fabrics and usually wear a maxi dress or jumpsuit. Jumpsuits are my thing.

was before, even if I don’t want to get out of bed, I’m always excited to know that I begin with a blank slate.

Last, best purchase for yourself? A pair of Rothy’s. I’m on my feet 12-plus hours a day when I shoot weddings. My joints and feet scream at me the next day. Rothy’s are magical shoes. I’ve walked the streets of Manhattan for over five days and my feet never hurt! One cool fact: the shoes are made from recycled water bottles. Unlike cloth or leather shoes, they don’t get scuffed. I can throw them in the washer and they come out looking brand new.

One thing you can never get enough of? The sound of my kids laughing.

Favorite salon? I love my stylist at Fresh Vintage Salon & Boutique. Kelly Teale has tamed my mane for 15 years. Even after all these years I love sitting in her chair. We talk about life while she makes me feel beautiful! Most regrettable fashion or hair style you rocked? Oh man!! I had ’80s bangs in the ’90s. I have a picture that is EPIC…glamour shot style! Shops you love to browse? HomeGoods. First photo you ever took? My first intentional photo was of my newborn daughter. I was an Anne Geddes fan back then, so I thought it would be fun to set up a scene and pose my 3-day-old baby. Looking back, it was the beginning of my purpose and my career. Favorite part of your day? Waking up. No matter how hard of a day it

Favorite place for coffee? Symmetry Coffee & Crêpes. I like the vibe and ambiance of the cafe but, more so, their passion for sourcing the best ingredients and the heart behind their brand. Favorite place to indulge your sweet tooth? Walking into Ocala’s Chocolate + Confections shop downtown is a divine experience by scent alone! My kids love their ice cream and I love their chocolates and conversation. Favorite restaurant? I like to try new things, but I always find myself going back to Harry’s. I love to sit outside, sip a glass of cabernet and indulge in their Oreo beignets. Signature dish? Lumpia (Lumpiang Shanghai) is a traditional Filipino spring roll appetizer that always makes it to the table at any Filipino gathering. Its thin, crispy golden wrapper crackles with every bite, yielding a savory mixture of meat and minced vegetables. And when you pair it with sweet and sour sauce, it’s so hard to stop eating them! It can take several hours to make a batch but only minutes to devour. I keep my freezer stocked so I’m always ready to dish them out when family and friends come over.

Favorite day trip? St. Augustine is my happy place. I love the city for its stories. The historic district’s charm and abundance of good eats makes me giddy. You can find out a lot from educational tours, but my favorite are the ghost tours. Once I took a picture of a “haunted house” and in the window was a face with hollowed eyes looking back at me. Creepy! (See page 50 for full story) St. Augustine is also pretty special to me and my husband, because we were married inside a castle off the coast, Castle Otttis. Favorite place to do the outdoor thing? I’ve always been drawn to water for play and reflection, so my most favorite place to get my “nature on” would be at the Rainbow River and surrounding springs. To swim in water that has fallen from the sky and been purified by the earth is like heaven for me. Motto you live by? Believing and practicing these words has changed my life. “What you think, you create. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you become.” – Anonymous Best book you’ve read recently? Wishes Fulfilled by Wayne Dyer. Three words that describe you? Hugger, dreamer, romantic.

To learn more about Lyn, visit www.mahalimagery.com. To suggest someone for Style File, email us at editorial@magnoliamediaco.com October ‘19



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In The Kitchen With Marge Felix By LISA MCGINNES Photography by AMY DAVIDSON

Marge will tell you her passion is family and friends. But she doesn’t have to say it; that message is clear in everything she does—from her delicious comfort food to the special touches that make her décor so distinct and inviting. When you come to Marge’s house, you’re home.

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arge Felix doesn’t mind if you come into her kitchen when she’s cooking. To be honest, she might be a little disappointed if you don’t just come right on in to sit down and talk. “I just love people,” she says with a warm smile. “I love having people around.” In fact, her dream kitchen would have plenty of space for everyone to come in and hang out—like, she says, when you go to a party and “everybody ends up in the kitchen.” “Forget the formal dining,” she urges. “It’s all about being together in the kitchen.” Felix may enjoy being social because that’s what she’s used to; she grew up one of 10 siblings. She remembers her mom was always cooking, and “everything was like cooking for the masses”—large trays of toast or fragrant cinnamon rolls and stock pots full of sweet, steaming hot cocoa. She says her mother’s style of cooking may have been unintentionally healthier because everything was baked in the oven and nothing was fried. She doesn’t remember doing a lot of cooking alongside her mom as a kid. Even back then, Felix’s interest was creating beautiful presentation with thoughtful touches. “She would let me shine her

good silver for special dinners. I would shine the silverware and the platters and make place cards out of construction paper. It was fun as a little girl.” Felix remembers that when she was in high school, she convinced her brothers to take out all the living room furniture to make room for a long holiday banquet table. She remembers that there might have been a few grumbles from the boys, but that “they enjoyed it; they really did.” These days, although she works fulltime for Hands of Mercy Everywhere, a Belleview charity that assists teen mothers, Marge Felix Events is her outlet for creativity. She designs the event décor and enjoys all events from the most creative themed kids’ parties to elegant corporate events. The holiday season is her favorite, and this year she will again design custom décor and decorate the homes of several local families for the holidays as she’s done for the past five years. When she doesn’t have a weekend event, Felix loves cooking dinner for her family, and dishes with a simple yet complex flavor profile, like her stuffed pork loin, are among their favorites. She calls her style “comfort food with attitude” and she likes to pair hearty meats with fresh vegetables and colorful, texture-rich

Stuffed Pork Loin Makes 6 servings Boneless pork tenderloin, approximately 4 pounds (half an average 8-pound loin) 1/2 pound prosciutto, thinly sliced 1/2 pound Parmigiano-Reggiano, thinly sliced 2 bags fresh spinach 8 whole garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced 6 sprigs fresh rosemary Olive oil, as needed Salt and pepper 5 feet butchers’ twine Optional: 5 garlic cloves cut in half, to stud the roast Preheat oven to 350º. › Sauté spinach until tender with a little olive oil and garlic slices. Set aside. › Slice the pork loin in half lengthwise; lay halves side by side, cut side up. › Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. › Layer both sides as follows: single layer of cheese slices, prosciutto slices, sautéed spinach. › If desired, stud loin with whole garlic cloves by cutting slits in the meat with a small knife and inserting garlic cloves. › Fold one half onto the other to put the loin back together with stuffing in the middle. › Cut strips of twine and tie around roast to hold together. › Place loin in a baking pan and loosely cover with foil. › Bake for 45 minutes, removing foil halfway through. › To serve, cut off twine and slice into one-inch, thick-cut chops.



TA B L E salads, using classic spices like whole garlic and fragrant sprigs of rosemary. Her 16-year-old son Christopher says he enjoys helping his mom with the kitchen prep work, something he also does with his father,

Loring Felix, a longtime chef who now owns a meal prep and catering business. Marge Felix and her ex-husband have remained close friends, and she says he’s her go-to caterer for events.

“He makes it taste good; I make it look good,” she laughs. “That’s a nice thing we’re still able to do together.” Friends and family are always welcome for meals at her house and she somehow

effortlessly transforms everyday meals into comfortable events, explaining, “It’s all about making memories.” For more information, visit Marge Felix Events on Facebook.

Sautéed Green Beans 2 bags fresh, whole green beans 1 small jar roasted red peppers in olive oil, finely chopped Olive oil, as needed Butter, as needed Garlic powder Salt and pepper Sauté green beans and chopped red pepper in a little olive oil and butter. › Season with garlic powder, salt and pepper. › Remove from heat and serve while still crisp.

October ‘19







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Bready Or Not By BELEA T. KEENEY

When fall temperatures arrive, it’s finally time to fire up your oven and bake some delicious homemade bread.


aura Venosa, baker, crafter, jeweler and pottery artist is an Ocala Renaissance woman. We had the chance to talk all things bread with this expert baker and she gave tips on succeeding when you’re ready to bake—and break—bread. What’s your favorite part of bread baking? Everything, but I love that it’s a fun and healthy way to create something you can share with those you love. I personally love the contact, mixing the dough by hand. For newbies, what are some key bits of advice? Get a couple of good cookbooks and watch videos. Be sure to use unbleached flour rather than bleached. Invest in a digital scale, thermometer, bench scraper and a cast iron Dutch oven for making sourdough.

Pumpkin Boule Bread 4 cups of all-purpose unbleached flour, more as needed 1 cup unsweetened pumpkin purée 2 eggs 1/2 cup sugar divided 1/3 cup of warm water (about 110°) 1 package dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons) 2 tablespoons vegetable or coconut oil 2 teaspoons salt 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon Add yeast, water and half of the sugar to a bowl with a dough hook attachment. Let sit 10 minutes until the yeast becomes frothy. › Add eggs, oil, cinnamon, salt and pumpkin purée. Mix together. › With machine running, add the flour a cup at a time. When dough is firm and comes together, remove dough and put in an oiled bowl. › Cover for one hour. › Punch dough down and form into one boule or two. Place on a baking sheet, score tops and cover with towel. Let it sit again for one hour. › Preheat oven to 350°. Bake 40-45 minutes until golden brown.

Does weather really affect breads? I’ve had different results in winter and summer for the same recipe. Weather does indeed affect your kitchen micro climate. Dough will rise naturally and quicker on a hot summer day; in the winter it might take longer. It’s great to bake bread on a rainy day when the barometric pressure is low. Your bread will rise more quickly. That’s why it’s fun to experiment when baking. Can kids learn to bake early in life? Bread making is great for kids. Kids can learn measurements, mixing the dough is fun, and cleaning up as you go and just spending time together creating something the whole family can enjoy together is very enjoyable. Adults should handle the oven part, depending on the ages of the children. Any other tips or tricks of the trade? I would say invest in bread making tools, a digital scale is a must and a thermometer…patience. Relax and have fun. It’s the best therapy and makes a beautiful housewarming gift with homemade butters, jams and f lowers.

October ‘19



Brick City Southern Kitchen & Whiskey Bar 10 S Magnolia Ave., Ocala

(352) 512-9458 › brickcitybbq.com Sun-Wed 11a-10p › Thurs 11a-11p › Fri-Sat 11a-12a Located in downtown Ocala’s historic town square, Brick City Southern Kitchen’s aroma is recognized for several blocks around. Once inside, you are met with a wall of over 400 whiskeys from


around the world and a collection of custom folk art from Nicklos Richards. To the rear of the restaurant is their scratch kitchen where all the sides, barbecue sauces, dressings and seasonings are prepared. But the heart of this kitchen is the custom-built smoker, where the low, slow heat of burning hickory smokes beef brisket, ribs, pork shoulders, whole chickens and turkey breast.

Bruster’s Real Ice Cream 2707 E Silver Springs Blvd, Ocala (352) 622-2110 › brusters.com Sun-Thur 12p-10p, Fri-Sat 12p-11p You scream ice cream, we scream Bruster’s. More than just any ol’ ice cream parlor, Bruster’s knows how to satisfy the needs of any ice cream lover. Their large variety of premium flavors and desserts is made right in the store where they are served, including crunchy handmade waffle cones, customized sundaes, candy-filled blasts, thick milkshakes, frozen yogurts and no-sugar-added flavors.

Don’t forget their free doggie sundaes and baby cones, with purchase, for children under 40 inches. Banana Thursdays: Bring your own banana and get 1/2 price on a banana split! Event catering? Just call us, we’ll bring the party.

If you really want to crank up a party, Bruster’s will bring their scrumptious sweets to you. Sweeten your next big day with Bruster’s, and choose from endless flavors such as Blueberry Cheesecake, Peach Melba and Black Raspberry. Try our NEWEST flavors, Mango Dragonfruit Sorbet and Sea Salt Caramel with Almonds!

El Toreo

3790 E Silver Springs Boulevard, Ocala

(352) 694-1401 › 7 days 11a-10p SR 200, Ocala › (352) 291-2121 › 7 days 11a-11p New lunch specials include Taco Salad on Mondays, $5.45; Speedy Gonzalez on Tuesdays, $5.45; Quesadillas on Wednesdays, $7.95; Chimichangas on Thursdays, $6.95; and Burrito Supreme on Fridays, $5.95. New dinner options include Fajita Mondays, $10.95; Chimichanga Tuesdays, $8.95; Alambre Wednesdays, $9.95; and Tacos de Bistec Thursdays, $9.95. Plus $1.95 margaritas on Mondays. On Sunday, kids 12 and under can enjoy $1.95 children’s meals (take-out not included). Wednesday is Special Margarita Day, 99¢ all day. Saturday is 2-for-1 margaritas all day. Happy Hour daily, 3-7pm. Everything is 2-4-1 (exceptions may apply).



Wednesday: 99¢ House Margaritas All Day Thursday: Trivia Night, 7-9pm (Blvd. location) Thursday: Mariachi band at the 200 location, 6-9pm



Book your party at Tony’s today.

Tony’s Sushi & Steakhouse 3405 SW College Road, Ocala

(352) 237-3151 › tonysushi.com Mon-Thu 11a-10p › Fri & Sat 11a-11p › Sun Noon-10p With abundant menu choices and over 100 off-menu rolls, you certainly won’t run out of options at Tony’s Sushi. If you can’t decide, the waitstaff is excellent at suggesting items you’re sure to enjoy. Every roll and sushi dish is made to order from the freshest ingredients. In the steakhouse area, highly trained chefs prepare a memorable meal as they cook on the tableside grills, preparing chicken, steak or seafood just the way you like it. Entrées include soup or salad and rice. Tony’s Sushi has a family-friendly, casual atmosphere, along with a full bar, including imported Japanese sake and beer selections.

Braised Onion

754 NE 25th Ave., Ocala

(352) 620-9255 › braisedonion.com Tue-Thu 11:30a-9p › Fri-Sat 11:30a-10p › Sun 11:30a-8p Braised Onion Restaurant, where you’ll experience “Comfort Food with Attitude” in a fun, warm and colorful but casual atmosphere, is open for lunch and dinner. Winner of Culinary Combat and Taste of Ocala for four years and most recently voted Ocala’s Best of the Best; the menu options are plentiful and guaranteed to make your taste buds explode with happiness. And don’t forget the dessert menu, which includes our prize-winning bread pudding and coconut cream pie. So call today to make your reservation; you won’t regret it.

NOW SERVING WINE & BEER! Dine-in, take-out and delivery available.

Louie’s Pizza & Italian Restaurant 422 South Pine Avenue, Ocala, FL (352) 304-5199 Mon-Sat 11a-9p

This family-owned and-operated restaurant uses only the freshest ingredients and everything on the menu is made to order. To get your meal going, try the mozzarella caprese, garlic knots or fried calamari. The antipasto and Greek salads are two more favorites! Entrées include a huge variety of chicken, seafood, pasta and veal options. If you crave it, chances are they make it. The pizza, though. You have to try the hand-tossed pizza. Pile it high with your favorite toppings, or try the Sicilian with its one-of-a-kind meat sauce. No matter what you order, you’ll be satisfied and ready to call Louie’s a new family favorite.

October ‘19



Pasta Faire Italian Ristorante 10401 US Hwy 441, Belleview (352) 347-3100 › pastafaire.com Mon-Sat 11a-10p › Sun 11a-9p

Owner Kathy Funk, along with managing partner Brandon Magnuson and Chef Santos Cruz, invite you to experience the culinary delights and warm atmosphere of Pasta Faire in Belleview. For over 26 years, Pasta Faire has served Marion County and surrounding residents with a wide array of Italian specialties, pasta creations, wood fired rotisserie chicken, New York-style pizzas and much more. Pasta Faire would like to thank all of our wonderful patrons who have voted us “Best of the Best” Italian restaurant the past three years and Taste of Ocala winners the past two years. Hope to see you at the “Faire.”

Home of the BOGO Take Out Pizza! Come see our new menu and Chef’s Specials. Full-service catering & drop-offs. Call for catering (352) 260-5807. Taste of Ocala Winner 2018

Harry’s Seafood Bar & Grille 24 SE 1st Avenue, Ocala

(352) 840-0900 › hookedonharrys.com Mon-Thu 11a-10p › Fri & Sat 11a-11p › Sun 11a-9p Located in the heart of downtown Ocala, Harry’s offers traditional Louisiana favorites like Shrimp and Scallop Orleans, Crawfish Etouffée, Jambalaya, Shrimp Creole, Blackened Red Fish, Louisiana Gumbo and Shrimp-n-grits (pictured). Other favorites, like French Baked Scallops and Bourbon Street Salmon, are complemented with grilled steaks, chicken, burgers, po’ boy sandwiches and salads. Their full bar features Harry’s Signature Cocktails, such as the Harry’s Hurricane, Bayou Bloody Mary or the Cool Goose Martini. They also feature wines by the glass and a wide selection of imported, domestic and craft beer.


Six locations in Ocala and Wildwood zaxbys.com

Try the absolutely craveable chicken, Zalads and Zappetizers, or enjoy any one of the many Party Platterz catered for your next game, party or event. Always fresh and made to order, Zaxby’s offers family-friendly, fast service featuring daringly zesty chicken fingers, wings and more. Open seven days a week with six locations to serve you throughout Ocala and Wildwood, you can drive thru on the go or dine in with family and friends. ZAXBY’s: Always so Zatisfying!



Happy Hour Specials: 2-7p every day $3 Draft Beer $4 House Wine & Premium Cocktails $5 Super Premium & $6 Harry’s Signature Cocktails $7 off bottles of wine

Locations: 3351 W Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala; (352) 789-6001 › 3400 N Pine Ave., Ocala; (352) 877-7900 › 2900 SW 27th Ave., Ocala; (352) 861-9234 › 6033 SW Hwy 200, Ocala; (352) 351-1541 › 13451 SW 17th Ct., Ocala; (352) 347-5775 › 868 E SR 44, Wildwood; (352) 748-0221





hat if I told you that art isn’t snobby and doesn’t always have to be super serious— that it can also be colorful, familiar and even irreverent?


Marilyn by Andy Warhol



17.8.60 by David Williams These paintings and sculptures were big, in your face and, due to their size, in your way if you tried to walk around them. Warhol also understood how repetition can drill something into your consciousness; anyone who has had a song stuck in their head is familiar with this concept. His repeating visual images, much like musical notes, get stuck in your head. Warhol also used the themes of repetition and consumerism in creating a series of prints that reproduced his images for purchase. Among Warhol’s most iconic series of prints were those of international superstar Marilyn Monroe—an enduring legend of popular culture. The Appleton Museum of Art now owns a Marilyn print as well as Warhol’s famous

Flowers 4, in addition to works by other famous Pop Art pioneers such as Robert Rauschenberg. They are all currently on view in our Modern and Contemporary galleries; I invite you to come experience Pop Art for yourself! Learn more › Appleton Museum of Art › 4333 E Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala › www. appletonmuseum.org › (352) 291-4455 A former professional archaeologist, Patricia Tomlinson joined the Appleton Museum of Art as Curator of Exhibitions in 2016 after having served as curatorial staff in the New World Department at the Denver Art Museum for eight years. Photo by Ralph Demilio

In the early 1950s, a group of British art students calling themselves the Independent Group grew tired of what they perceived to be “the same old thing” in the art world and how art should be made. Fascinated with American consumer culture and its slick, high-design advertising, these young artists wanted to incorporate popular and recognizable images into their art. They would use glossy images from women’s magazines, comic books, “girly” magazines and trendy advertisements to create work that at first glance might seem superficial, but often spoke volumes about consumerism and 1950s-era culture. And thus, Pop Art (short for “popular art”) was born! By the 1960s, Pop Art had spread to the United States and artists such as Robert Rauschenberg and later, Andy Warhol, were putting their own spin on the movement. For example, Warhol used imagery from everyday items such as Brillo Soap Pads and Campbell’s Soup cans and literally made them larger than life in the form of monumental sculptures. Part of Warhol’s genius had to do with the way in which he chose to aggrandize the type of “throwaway” items that most people scarcely think about, let alone contemplate. Yet the graphics on the boxes and cans were specifically designed to grab your attention in order for you to notice, and then buy them. Due to his background as a commercial artist, Warhol intrinsically understood how attentiongrabbing colors and package design seized your attention. He forced you to really look at them by monumentalizing and often repeating their forms much like the repetitious display of items in a grocery store—you couldn’t just toss them in your shopping cart and forget about them.

Cheers to Southern sass and sisterhood!

By Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope, and Jamie Wooten Sponsored By: Clear Channel Outdoor Tickets $27 adults • $13 students


352.236.2274 | OcalaCivicTheatre.com October ‘19




The Art Of Things Lost And Found Ocala artist Aspen Olmstead fashions thought-provoking works of art from repurposed items. By JOANN GUIDRY Photography by ISABELLE RAMIREZ


urrently residing at the Tuscawilla Art Park is a great blue heron unlike any other of his species. Cloaked in a shiny suit of armor, he is suspended in perpetual landing mode. Oh, and he’s part cow skull and beer cans. This nature-defying heron is the creation of Ocala artist Aspen Olmstead. “I consider myself a found item artist,” says Olmstead. “I pick up items that get my attention, things that others throw away, and repurpose them into art.” The inspiration for Olmstead’s great blue heron actually came from her then 7-yearold daughter Ambria and was 10 years in the making. “We were walking along the shore at Cedar Key and Ambria found broken pieces of a fishing pole. She said the pieces looked like the legs of a wading bird,” says Olmstead. “Then, while shopping in a thrift



store, we came across some vintage chain mesh purses and thought they looked like a heron’s head feathers. I stashed those things away, thinking one day I might use them to make a heron.” That day came in the fall of 2017, when Olmstead was asked to create another piece for the Tuscawilla Art Park. At the time, Olmstead’s The Web We Weave had been on display for more than a year. Also a found item art installation, it was inspired when Olmstead came across a spider web with trash trapped in it. “Now it was time to create my heron, so I started researching them, looking at pictures,” says Olmstead, 43, who has lived in Ocala since she was 12 and grew up only blocks from Tuscawilla Park. “I must have looked at hundreds of pictures to get a vision of a model in my head. Then I looked at my stash of trash, which is color-coded and categorized, to put him together.” A whitewashed cow’s skull that she found years ago in a pasture, turned upside down, became the heron’s center mass and breast bone. Broken fishing pole pieces became his beak, legs and wing skeleton. The chain mesh from those vintage purses worked perfectly for the head feathers. “I made his neck vertebrae out of deer and alligator bones, and the discs between are plastic detergent caps,” says Olmstead. “I run a cat rescue, so I have lots of aluminum cat food cans. I used the tab lids to make the neck feathers.” Olmstead enlisted the help of a friend, with a particularly useful appetite, to further flesh out her creation. “My friend gave me 115 aluminum beer cans, which I hammered flat to use for wing feathers,” says Olmstead. “The beer can pull tabs make up the heron’s chain mesh body.” Once the heron was complete and on display, Olmstead says, “The heron really wasn’t mine anymore. He’s my gift to the community.” While not always a found item artist, Olmstead says she’s been “an artist since I could hold a pencil.” Growing up in Sarasota, she credits her always-doodling mother with gifting her with basic art classes when she was a child.


“We always had art books in the house and I had an amazing first grade teacher who encouraged me to follow my art passion,” recalls Olmstead. “While living in Sarasota, I would visit the Ringling Art Museum as much as possible.” Over the years, Olmstead’s art evolved from pencil to pen and ink to wood burning to found items. But she adds that “pen and ink will always have a special place in my heart. “The two artists who really inspired me to pursue found item art were Larry Fuente and Tony Cragg,” says Olmstead. “When I saw their work, it just really connected with me and I kept it in the back of my mind.” A freak twist of fate led her to pursue the genre. While working with animals in captivity at Silver Springs State Park, Olmstead was attacked by the coyotes that

Opposite page: The Thinking Chair, Above: Heron lands in Tuscawilla Park. had been raised there. The incident, which happened in February 2000, left Olmstead not only with physical scars but psychological ones as well. She was diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder. “While recovering from the injuries to my legs, I spent a lot of time looking at my propped-up feet and thinking,” she explains. “That’s when I had an epiphany about making art with what’s laying at our feet. And that’s found item art.” The heron will be on display at the Tuscawilla Art Park through the end of the

year. And Olmstead is already planning her next installation. “I’ve done a concept sketch of a big colorful octopus. I want it to carry the message that water is life. And we’re endangering all life with the trash we’re dumping into our oceans and waterways,” offers Olmstead. “I picked up a hard hat on the side of the road one day. I’m thinking that turned upside down, it will make a great head for an octopus.” For more information › www.aspensart.com October ‘19



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Turning Bad to Good By LISA MCGINNES

Ten years ago, a young mother in Dunnellon named Michelle lost her three-year ďŹ ght with breast cancer. Although her family feels her loss profoundly to this day, the seless way they have chosen to honor her life is helping thousands of local women.



uring the month of October we’ll see lots of pink ribbons for breast cancer awareness (and probably some pink flamingos, too.) Advertising campaigns will urge women over 40 and younger women in high-risk categories to get their yearly mammogram. But for the nearly half of Marion County women who have trouble affording basic healthcare, it’s not always that easy. Even with insurance, high deductibles make the screening out of reach for many women. Michelle-O-Gram, started by Michelle Blauser Standridge’s family and friends, wants to make sure no one in our area goes without the testing and treatment they need. “It’s kind of like taking something bad and turning it into something good,” says Sherry Roberts, co-founder of Michelle-OGram. “Michelle was always happy, always

smiling. She just loved people. During the three years she was undergoing treatment she was always saying to people, ‘Get your mammogram—it’s so important.’” Roberts remembers that even as her family was grieving, just a few weeks after Michelle’s passing in 2009, their close friend Joey Wisebaum came to her and said, “Do you think it would be OK for us to talk about this?” Wisebaum, a breast cancer survivor and registered nurse, knew there was a great need. Roberts herself is a retired nurse, and the two women realized they could honor Michelle’s memory by helping others get potentially lifesaving healthcare. They talked to fellow members of First United Methodist Church of Dunnellon about their idea, and that first year they helped three women obtain screening mammograms.

They feel like they have been given another chance. They feel like they wouldn’t have had that if Michelle-O-Gram hadn’t been there. — Sherry Roberts



Ten years later, the nonprofit organization has helped around 1,500 women and five men (yes—men can get breast cancer, too.) Roberts and other family members carry on without Wisebaum, who succumbed to cancer in 2015. When you talk to Roberts, it’s easy to see that, for her family, this work truly is a labor of love. “We’re here to help people,” she says simply. “You talk to people and hear the stories they have. They end up asking you for prayer. Then they call back and they’re so thankful. They write notes and thank us. They feel like they have been given another chance. They feel like they wouldn’t have had that if Michelle-O-Gram hadn’t been there.” This Marion County nonprofit is on track to spend $100,000 this year to help our community. It exists thanks to donated funds, and Roberts is proud to explain that all the money stays here to help local women and also that the organization has no administrative costs. “We don’t have an office. We don’t have anybody paid,” Roberts says. “Our stamps, our brochures, everything is donated. I think it’s important for people to know we don’t have money going out for anything else.” That means 100 percent of donated funds go to pay for breast cancer screenings and BRCA gene testing and counseling as well as breast biopsies, which, although very expensive, are vital for patients who need a confirmed diagnosis to begin treatment. Roberts and her family have made the process easy: A woman who needs assistance calls Michelle-O-Gram and leaves a message. She’ll receive a call back with instructions on how and where to schedule her procedure. No matter which test she needs, screening mammogram, diagnostic mammogram, ultrasound or biopsy, she will only pay $25 and MichelleO-Gram will cover the rest.


Patients in Marion County usually receive care at Ocala Health’s Advanced Imaging Centers. Justin Lamb, the community relations manager for Advanced Imaging, explains that their staff has become invested in the charity. “Advanced Imaging Centers has partnered with Michelle-O-Gram since 2010. We’re extremely proud of our joint efforts in assisting local women with obtaining a mammogram.” As part of their annual fundraising efforts, Advanced Imaging Centers sells plastic lawn pink flamingos for $12 each with proceeds

going to Michelle-O-Gram. In addition, each October, Advanced Imaging Centers partners with local businesses and “flocks” the business with over 100 pink flamingos to generate donations for Michelle-O-Gram. For the past several years, Bunco Babes Ocala have donated the proceeds of their events to Michelle-O-Gram. This May, their girls’-night-out favorite dice game tournament brought in $20,100. “We found out about Michelle-O-Gram’s fundraising efforts through Michelle’s extended family and knew that was where our hearts belonged,” explains Candy Holman

of Bunco Babes Ocala. “Michelle-O-Gram not only benefits local women, they are 100 percent not for profit and rely solely on donations with no administrative fees paid to anyone. Therefore, all the money that Bunco Babes Ocala raises annually through several fundraising events goes directly to help patients with diagnostic procedures for breast cancer detection. We are so very proud to be affiliated with Michelle-O-Gram.” For more information on Michelle-O-Gram’s services and how to help, visit › www.michelleogram.com.

October ‘19


Optimism. A powerful element in fighting cancer. Marissa Lenney’s doctors at Florida Cancer Specialists started her treatment less than 24 hours after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Being treated just 15 minutes from home allowed Marissa to soak up as many mom moments as she could. Florida Cancer Specialists’ quick response and her family’s support helped Marissa picture a future where she could be with her daughter. “By getting treated locally at Florida Cancer Specialists, I was able to spend more time with the people who matter most — my family.” -Marissa Lenney, Patient & Breast Cancer Fighter

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Putting Privacy And Safety First Emergency care at AdventHealth Ocala gets consistently high marks for being high-quality, safe and patient-focused. With the recent renovation and expansion of their ER, the hospital is committed to serving the community better and faster. By NICK STEELE


dventHealth Ocala recently completed a second phase of expansion of its emergency department at its 1500 SW 1st Avenue location. The first phase, started in February, added a new façade, new waiting room, three trauma rooms, 20 private patient rooms and a nurse’s station. In the most recent phase, a bariatric imaging

area was added and the number of private patient rooms was expanded to 42. By converting the patient rooms, the hospital is joining other top medical centers across the nation in changing the patient experience for the better. For many, the vision of an ER is a cramped waiting room and large open wards with patients on gurneys lining the

walls or occupying cramped, shared rooms, barely separated by a curtain divider. Creating private rooms gives patients and caregivers more space and privacy, and it allows for increased infection control. It’s difficult to prevent patients from catching infections when they are mere feet from another sick person. “This is just one way we’re investing in our services to strengthen the impact and

quality of the health care services we provide to our community,” explained President and CEO Joe Johnson. AdventHealth offers three locations for emergency care: AdventHealth Ocala ER at 1500 SW 1st Ave., Ocala, FL; Children’s Emergency Department at the same location, adjacent to the ER; and AdventHealth ER TimberRidge at 9521 SW State Rd. 200, Ocala, FL.

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To meet with our cancer team, request an appointment online at UFHealth.org/breastcancer


Think Green for Mental Health Mental health is just as important as physical health, and staying healthy is possible with care and understanding.

Photo By Lea Dubedout



e’re not just thinking “pink” this month; we’re also thinking green—the ribbon color that signifies mental health awareness. In October we’ll observe two important dates for mental health awareness:

Mental Illness Awareness Week, October 6th-12th, and World Mental Health Day, observed on October 10th. This year, one in five Americans will experience a mental health issue. Chances are you have a family member

or friend who struggles with anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or another condition that can make it tough for them to live their best life. Perhaps you are one of the more than 46 million

Americans who manage mental illness on a daily basis.

Mental Illness Awareness Week Mental illness affects everyone— directly or indirectly—according to the National Alliance on Mental October ‘19


H E A LT H about mental illness. Their #CureStigma campaign and StigmaFree pledge urge Americans to “change the way the world sees mental health,” put an end to stigma and create hope for those affected by mental illness by encouraging acceptance and understanding. Thomas Pecca, L.M.H.C., C.S.A.T., C.T.T., the senior clinical advisor for The Guest House Ocala, says better understanding of mental illness will help more people seek treatment. “Unfortunately, the term ‘mental health’ is widely misunderstood and carries a stigma that is undeserved. Millions of Americans suffer from mental health issues, many untreated due to this stigma. Needing help with anxiety, depression, addiction or other issues should be encouraged not demonized.” For more information on Mental Illness Awareness Week and NAMI’s local support groups and resources, visit www. namiocala.org.

Mental Health Facts

1 IN 5

(46.6 million) adults in the United States experience a mental health condition in a given year.

1 IN 25

(11.2 million) adults in the United States experience a serious mental illness in a given year.


The approximate number of adults in the United States facing the reality of managing a mental illness every day.


The average delay that individuals with mental health conditions face between experiencing symptoms and starting treatment. Source: NAMI.org

Photo By Toimetaja Tolkeburoo

Illness (NAMI), and that’s why the organization works to educate the public, fight stigma and provide support during Mental Illness Awareness Week and all year long. NAMI Marion County holds peer-led support group meetings and classes for people dealing with mental health issues and their loved ones. The family support group meets once a month and is designed to help family members develop better coping skills, share experiences in a safe setting, learn not to judge others’ pain, embrace humor and understand that mental health conditions are no one’s fault and can be traumatic experiences. “When someone is dealing with mental illness, we are too,” explains Ocala therapist Carol Jordan, Ph.D., L.M.F.T. “NAMI is a caring, proven and valuable resource. They are available to everyone and everyone is vulnerable to issues pertaining to mental health.” NAMI also works to fight stigma and misunderstanding

Photo By Baylee Gramling


World Mental Health Day Every year on October 10th, the World Health Organization (WHO) seeks to raise awareness of mental health issues and mobilize efforts in support of mental health. This year they’re focusing on suicide prevention, noting that suicide is a serious public health problem since every suicide is a tragedy that affects families and communities and has long-lasting effects on the people left behind. However, the organization believes that suicides are preventable with timely intervention. WHO explains that people with mental disorders, especially depression and alcohol use, can sometimes decide to commit suicide impulsively in moments of crisis when they feel temporarily unable to deal with life stresses. We all know how challenging it can be to face financial problems, relationship break-ups or chronic pain and illness, but the persistent stigma around mental illness keeps many people from seeking help when they need it. Around the globe, nearly 800,000 people take their own lives every year, and suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds. For more information on World Mental Health Day and suicide prevention awareness, visit www.who.int. Finding out that a loved one is considering suicide can be terrifying for everyone involved, but there are free resources available 24/7. If you or someone you know needs immediate assistance, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255. For free and confidential help finding local resources, dial the United Way’s 2-1-1 helpline, text 898-211, or chat online at www.uwmc.org/211.

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October ‘19






“As you journey down the path, don’t forget to be present momentby-moment and absorb the beauty and richness of simply being alive.” ―Cary David Richards


n observing the beauty that exists in the here and now, we can find the extraordinary revealed within the ordinary. Each month we invite you to see our community with fresh eyes through the lens of our talented photographers. October ‘19



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