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Riverview/Apollo Beach

N E P O W NO December 2016 Volume 14, Issue 12 Ph: 657-2418

Free Popcorn Pg. 26 C E L E B R A T I N G

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Winter Is Prime Time For Viewing Manatees In Apollo Beach

Bloomingdale Student Raises Funds For Queena Survivor Feature Film

Accessed by the nature trails, the boardwalk will take you to the wildlife observation tower which opened in 2014. The tower is 50 ft. tall and gives you a great view of the surrounding area and Tampa Bay. The entrances are located Now that cooler temperatures have finally arrived, it is a great time to bring the family to the Manatee Viewing Center. at the south end of the Manatee Viewing Center’s parking lot. It’s almost wintertime in Florida, and Bring a picnic lunch to enjoy at one of the although we don’t experience the tables at the base of the tower. extremely cold temperatures as our Built and located to minimize the northern neighbors, the Gulf waters do impact on the environment, the tower, cool down below 68 degrees and that boardwalk and habitat trail are part of a means that the native manatees must network of trails that will connect to find shelter in warmer waters. the Florida Conservation and Technology Many seek refuge at TECO’s Big Center, an under-construction project Bend facility as warm water flows from between Tampa Electric, the Florida the power station’s discharge canal. The Aquarium and the Florida Fish and Manatee Viewing Center, located at 6990 Wildlife Conservation Commission. Dickman Rd. in Apollo Beach, is both a The Manatee Viewing Center's tidal state and federally designated manatee walk is featured as part of the Great sanctuary providing critical protection Florida Birding Trail, but offers more than from the cold. The viewing center is just vibrant birdlife. During your walk on much more than just seeing the mana900-ft., ADA-compliant walkway from the tees. center to the Tampa Bay Estuary, you According to TECO’s Environmental can identify a wide selection of native Technician Jamie Woodlee, “We are a coastal plants and trees as well as a wide free environmental education facility variety of animal life. where people can come learn about New for this year will be a ray’s touch manatees and Florida wildlife/plants in tank and the boardwalks have been general.” widened leading out to the viewing area. Stroll among award-winning butterfly Both parking and admission are free. gardens and enjoy the Florida-friendly The Manatee Viewing Center is open landscaping. Along the way, there is a now through April 15 from 10 a.m. to 5 variety of native and coastal plant life, p.m. daily (wildlife observation tower and where you can also catch a glimpse of habitat trails close at 4 p.m.). It is closed animals in the wild that make the center's on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and habitat their home. Easter.

on the second draft of the screen play. “The target audience for the film is pretty much anyone who has been told they aren’t capable of doing something. This film will not only prove them otherwise, but will also humble audiences to show them that they haven’t lost everything and that life is precious and worth fighting for.” Perez is hoping to Bloomingdale High School senior Derrick Ball Perez is raising raise money from the funds to make a movie about Queena, the 2008 Bloomingdale community to purchase Library victim. equipment, cover the Many people in the Brandon area cost of production and have funds to know the story of Queena, the 2008 distribute the film to audiences all over Bloomingdale Library victim, but Derrick the world. Ball Perez with Indomitable Productions, “We need the community’s help to a senior at Bloomingdale High School, tell Queena’s story,” said Perez. “She is looking for help from the community has lost a lot, especially a lot of things to introduce Queena to a much larger most of us take for granted. But the one audience. big thing she hasn’t lost is that amazing, Perez, who met Queena through beautiful smile and that laugh that fills his mother who performs essential oil the room and brightens your day.” aroma touches on her, has raised more According to Perez, all of the funds than $1,500 towards his $25,000 goal to made from the sales of the film will go fund a movie in the style of the popular to Queena’s medical costs. Dolphin Tale, based on Queena’s story. For more information on Queena, “I knew about the events that took visit Contact place eight years ago, but I was Perez at 304-7984. extremely unaware of Queena’s current condition,” said Perez. “A lot of people I know weren’t even sure if she survived.” Queena suffered a brain injury during an attack at the Bloomingdale Regional Library when she was an 18-year-old senior in high school, and is now wheel chair bound and was unable to take the spot she had previously earned at the University of Florida. “We want to make this film so we can use Queena’s story to inspire others,” said Perez who is currently working on the budget for the film and putting the final touches


By Michelle Colesanti

By Kate Quesada

Osprey Observer 918 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. Brandon, FL 33511-6121

Postal Customer


Enter to Win! Pages 31-38

Photo By Tamas Mondovics Joined by her fellow cadets Riverview High School Navy JROTC Cadet Commander Arieles Quinones salutes during Hillsborough County’s 52nd Annual Veterans Day Tribute held Veterans Memorial Park and Museum, 3602 U.S. Highway 301 N. in Tampa. The event saw one of the largest turnouts honoring all active and former U.S. military service members.



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Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

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Beautiful Private pool home with 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms plus study all one floor with an additional second story bonus room and 3 car garage. Approx. 2,959 sq feet. Large eat in kitchen with 42" cherry wood cabinets, walk-in pantry, tile floor and stainless appliances .Oversized screened lanai. Offered at $365,000










Banked Owned with Repairs on LAKE. 4/3/3 with 3,692 sq feet. Features are Large Kitchen, Volume ceilings, garden tub, Awesome back yard. New carpet, paint, a/c and so much more. Offered @ $349,900.

Model perfect and includes one of the best lots in Waterset with deep conservation in back and no neighbor to the left of the home. 5 bedrooms, 5.5 bathrooms, 3 car tandem garage with approx. 3400 sq ft. This home is a custom built Endeavor II floor plan with many great modifications. Offered at $400k

Short Sale. Lender Approved. 4/2.5/2 with about 2,164 sq feet. Located on Conservation lot, large family room/dining room combo, spacious kitchen with stainless steel appliances, and large master. Offered @ $190,000.

Stunning 3/2/2 with 1,643 sq feet home. Awesome upgrades with all granite countertops, an island, new appliances, 42 in cabinets and beautiful backsplash. Open Floor plan, Tile throughout, large master, and privacy fence. Offered @ $237,900

CALLING all investors for this home with 4 bedrooms 2 bathrooms and approx. 1,686 sq. feet. This Home has a full kitchen with all nice appliances, a Screened in back porch, and a fenced in backyard. This Bank Owned will need a little paint and few minor touch ups and should be good to go. Offered @ $166,500.

WOW!! Great Starter Home with 3/2/2 with 1,355 sq. feet. Features Include Open Floor plan, Private back yard, Granite Counter Tops and white appliances!!! Not to mention great amenities. Offered @ $ 159,900




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Bank owned! Huge 5 bedroom plus media room, 3.5 bathroom and approx 4,432 square foot home. Hardwood floors. Formal dining/living room. large living room with vaulted ceilings, built in wall settings. Private pool and patio Offered at $319,900

Custom built, 4/3/3 with Pool/spa + Out door kitchen + break taking conversation home site + electrical upgrades + formal/ dining/ and family room. This house has so much to offer!! Offered @ $425,000



5/4/300 sq feet 3 car garage. Upgraded kitchen, built in appliances, dining and eat in kitchen, over garage apartment, large patio and a small pool for relaxing. MUST SEE HOME!! Offered @ $400,000



Beautiful Custom Built waterfront Home. 4/4/3 with 3,395 sq. feet. Features include, workshop, elevators, chiefs delight kitchen, media room, balcony with amazing view, huge showers and dual sinks, observation deck, Dock with boat slip and so much more. Offered @ $695,000.

To be built. 3 bedrooms + 2 Full Baths & 2 Half Baths with approx. 2763 S.F. + 2 Car Secured Parking. Brisa del Mar is a Mediterranean-styled Townhome Community in the heart of Apollo Beach and steps from a Marina, Beach, and Boating.

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Lovely 4/2.5/3 with approx. 2,519 sq. feet. This private pool on a pond home is amazing. Features include Community dock, waterfront pond, tile roof, paver driveway, interior spnaish tile, whole house water system, chiefs kitchen with upgrades, extensive landscaping and more. Offered @ $490,000.

To be built. 3 bedrooms + 2 Full Baths & 2 Half Baths with approx. 2763 S.F. + 2 Car Secured Parking. Brisa del Mar is a Mediterranean-styled Townhome Community in the heart of Apollo Beach and steps from a Marina, Beach, and Boating.

Starting at $349,900

December 2016

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Journey Church Tampa Builds New Riverview Sanctuary Brick By Brick

By Amanda Boston

Nestled among the trees, directly Church Tampa formed in 2005 with its across from Riverview High School is residency in Pastor Kyker’s HOA clubwhere you will find house and the the vibrant and YMCA Camp flourishing congreCristina. Then gation of Journey in 2006, it Church Tampa. acquired some Senior Parish former NASA Pastor Michael modular buildKyker accredits the ings from life of the communianother church ty as the driving on land across force behind their from Riverview recent expansion High School. and demand to The budding plant new churches. church began On Friday, October to require Michael Kyker, Senior Parish Pastor of Journey more space, 28, Pastor Kyker Church Tampa connected with attendees at the but Pastor held a dedication building dedication. ceremony for its Kyker was newly built sanctuary that now has the determined to construct a church withcapacity to handle its growing audience. out going into debt. So over the years, Unlike other church building projects, its members raised money and built it in this structure was built brick by brick stages. over a period of seven years, in several The first set of funds paid for the different stages, and solely with funds architectural plans and zoning. The secraised by its congregants. ond set of funds completed the underPerhaps, there is a parallel between ground work like plumbing and electric, Pastor Kyker and Old Testament leader, the foundation slab, and the metal buildNehemiah. With the members of the ing shell. However, a few years passed Jewish community, Nehemiah rebuilt the before the congregation collected wall surrounding the ancient city of enough capital to complete the rest of Jerusalem and Holy Temple. the structure. “When you build someComparable to the Jews using mud and thing from the ground up without cona trowel, the church members volunventional financing and pay for it as you teered their skills and services to the raise the money and see it complete, it construction project. With great enthusiis exciting,” said Pastor Kyker. asm Pastor Kyker said, “Ninety-five perJourney Church Tampa is a noncent of the congregation showed up at denominational church located on one time or another to help.” 10022 Cristina Dr. in Riverview. Visit With humble beginnings, Journey




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Amazon Offers New Convenience Lockers For Merchandise Pick Ups And Returns

By Michelle Colesanti

You don’t have lockers so that they to spend time any won’t see it.” more waiting for You can find your Amazon delivAmazon Locker locaery to make it to tions when selecting a your house. Since shipping address during last summer, the checkout process or Amazon gives conwhen adding a new sumers a new address in your option for their account. Locker sites deliveries – Amazon are given individual Lockers. names. Each Locker Once your has a name because package is delivit's an easy way for our ered to the Locker Amazon has a Locker named Boulder customers to identify location that you at the Speedway at Lithia Pinecrest them,” commented Rd. and Bloomingdale Ave. where you Billimoria. choose, you will can pick up items ordered. receive an email to Currently there are let you know it’s available for pick up. five locations within the south Many Locker locations have early Hillsborough County corridor to choose morning and late evening hours, some from. Many more locations are expecteven offering 24 hour service. You can ed as the program grows. Locally, they also make returns using the locker. can be found at: Amazon Locker Jim Billimoria from Amazon “Rigsby”, located at 10016 McMullen Corporate Communications said, “We Rd. in Riverview at the 7-Eleven, have nearly 20 Lockers in the area Riverview, Amazon Locker “Ethan”, since late this summer. Amazon located at 9817 US Hwy. 301 S in Lockers are a safe, secure, and conRiverview at the 7-Eleven, Amazon venient way for our customers to Locker “Boulder”, located at 3353 Lithia receive their Amazon packages and Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico at Speedway, can do so at any time up to three busiAmazon Locker “Diana”, located at ness days after their order has been 1020 S Kings Ave. in Brandon at the 7delivered to a Locker.” Eleven, and Amazon Locker “Vienna”, Local residents think this is a great located at 3629 E SR60 in Valrico at option that Amazon offers. Patricia the 7-Eleven. Tracy thought it had another great use More info about Amazon Lockers especially around holiday time. “If you can be at To are getting a gift for someone in your find a Locker close to you, visit house, you can pick it up at one of the

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview Chamber Welcomes & Celebrates New Ribbon Cuttings

Compiled By Michelle Colesanti

GRCC Welcomes Cindy Rolewicz, Mary Kay Consultant

Cindy Rolewicz, has now joined the chamber as a Mary Kay Consultant a ribbon cutting ceremony took place at Paris Nails Studio to mark this new venture. Rolewicz has gone back to her roots with Mary Kay. Returning to the Photo by Bryan Reith, Aflac well-respected company, Chadwell Homes celebrates new showroom. she would love to schedChadwell Homes Celebrates New ule your free skin care consultation. Showroom Rolewicz is happy to offer personalized Dozens of friends, family and chamservice that is just for you. For informaber members showed up to celebrate the tion, call 230-3354 or visit introduction of Chadwell’s new showroom and to participate in a large ribbon cutting ceremony in October. After the official photo was taken, everyone was treated to a bountiful array of fall foods and beverages as Ella Chadwell sang. In the showroom, home buyers can now see and touch the products they are choosing for their new homes. Chadwell Homes' award-winning floor plans have produced a generation Photo by Ed Booth, Huth & Booth Photography of customer satisfaction with GRCC welcomes Mary Kay Consultant, Cindy Rolewicz. many repeat homebuyers. For more information, please call 413Riverview Woman’s Club Cuts 4013, visit or Ribbon To Celebrate New Meeting Location email Jodi at to schedule a visit to the showroom, Riverview Woman’s Club (RWC) located at 4907 Joanne Kearney Blvd. in has officially changed their meeting Tampa. location to St. Joseph’s Hospital-South’s

Franciscan Conference Room in Riverview and the GRCC conducted a ribbon cutting to mark the occasion. The guests helped RWC colPhoto by Bryan Reith, Aflac lect 150 Kauffman Tire celebrates grand opening in Riverview. small or email stuffed animals that will be distributed to President Michele Wirth at michele.simSt. Joseph’s Hospital-South patients during the holiday season. RWC is made up of stay-at home Kauffman Tire –

Riverview Celebrates Grand Opening

In November, the GRCC celebrated the opening of Kauffman Tire in Riverview. Rob Albright and his technicians along with corporate representatives were thrilled to have GRCC members present for the event. Photo by Ed Booth, Huth & Booth Photography The first 100 visitors Riverview Woman’s Club celebrates new meeting location. to arrive that morning were awarded a $100 Kauffman Tire moms, business women, direct sales Card for a total of $10,000 given Gift business people and retirees. The club away that day. provides scholarships to Riverview stuKauffman Tire is located at 13110 S dents, supports various education US Hwy. 30 in Riverview. needs and identifies and supports comCall 533-5096 or visit munity outreach. For information, visit

December 2016

Campo Family YMCA Celebrates Hispanic Heritage with the Community Individuals at the Campo Family YMCA in Valrico, sprung from their seats to dance together to the rhythm of a catchy beat at the Attendees dancing at the Hispanic Hispanic Heritage event. Heritage celebration. Members and non-members of the Campo Family YMCA attended. As part of the celebration, attendees had the opportunity to consume foods from various Hispanic cultures such as Puerto Rico, Panama and much more. “The purpose of the event is to share Hispanic culture and traditions with the YMCA family and friends,” Associate Membership Director Kavita Marballi said. A focus group at the Campo Family YMCA called Hispanos Unidos hosted the event. With 280 participants, this will be the first year that the YMCA invited the community. The last couple of years it did honor the Hispanic Heritage, which showcased a variety of activities. This event had 30 local business sponsors that supplied items such as flowers, food, beverages, gift cards and photography. For instance, Love Story Florist from Riverview provided the flowers. Juicy Juice distributor owner Hugo Munoz and family contributed to the beverages. In March of this year, Hispanos Unidos formed at the Campo Family YMCA with its Hispanic members. The

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition







By Tatiana Ortiz

genesis behind the group would be to work together and connect the whole community through their Spanish language and culture

7 918 Lithia Pinecrest Rd., Brandon, FL 33511 657-2418, (fax) 657-4469 © Copyright 2012-2013 - Osprey Observer, Inc. No reproduction without written permission.


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with service. Member Services Representative Marcela Gonzalez at Campo Family YMCA, started Hispanos Unidos and leads it. “She developed a connection to serve the Hispanic community for the last 10 years,” Marballi said. Gonzalez mentions her thoughts and what she would like the community to grasp. “I am proud to be the leader of Hispanos Unidos and what the group did this year with their hardwork and support. I also want the community to see how much we enjoy working together and living in the United States,” Gonzalez said. For more information, visit It is located at 3414 Culbreath Rd. in Valrico. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday 5 a.m.- 10 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m.- 6 p.m. and Sunday 12 p.m.- 6 p.m. Call 6841371.


Michelle Colesanti

Kathy Collins




A table displayed with artifacts from the Hispanic cultures.



Kathi Hayes

Cyndi Cisneros





Terry Vassalotti

Denise Graf





Chuck Hoening

Kate Quesada





Patricia Tracy

Carole Fluhart




Kerrie Hoening 625-1527


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If interested in advertising in our Brandon or Valrico editions, please contact us at 813-657-2418.

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Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

New Bridges Dental Continues Dr. Rahal Success In Bloomingdale

By Kate Quesada

When Dr. Laura University of Florida College Coyle Bridges opened of Dentistry. She served as the doors of her dental class president for three office on Lithia years and was awarded the Pinecrest Rd. in Delta Dental Senior September, she was Leadership Award. In the achieving a life-long years since receiving her dream. degree, she has worked in “I have lived in the both corporate dentistry and Brandon area since private practice environments 1987,” said Coyle and she recently worked in a Bridges, who graduatpractice with four dentist and almost 30 employees. ed from Bloomingdale One High School. “I have of the worked very hard to ways be able to purchase and run my own pracCoyle tice here.” Bridges Valrico resident and Bloomingdale High School When Coyle graduate Dr. Laura Coyle Bridges recently opened believes Bridges heard that Dr. a dental office on Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico. her new Rahal, who had owned and operated his office is different from other dentists in the dental office in the same location for 27 area is the way it uses technology to years, was retiring, she jumped at the ease patient discomfort and reduce anxichance to open her own practice in the ety. “One aspect of our practice that is area where she and her husband Brad relevant to almost everyone is our use of raise their five children. The Wand,” said Coyle Bridges, referring “We are so excited to offer dental to a product from Milestone Scientific that care to the community we love,” said Coyle Bridges. “We have only been open uses a needle the size of a hair to provide local anesthesia for patients. “With a few weeks, but are already doing what The Wand we can numb only one tooth we can to be a great part of the commuat a time which allows the patient to suffer nity by sponsoring local events like the much less discomfort and even allows us Buckhorn Color Run and fundraisers at Bell Shoals Baptist where our children go to work on both sides of the mouth in to school.” succession meaning fewer visits. It also Coyle Bridges received an underlets the patient leave without a numb graduate degree from Florida State face.” Bridges Dental is located at 3646 University, a degree in Biomedical Lithia Pinecrest Rd. and can be reached Science from the University of South at 654-3399. For more information, visit Florida and graduated from The

GFWC Brandon Service League Proudly Presents Its Annual Holiday Home Tour

By Kathy L. Collins

With the holiday seaMassage, Facial and son fast approaching, you Spa, The Green will not want to miss the Boutique and at GFWC Brandon Service Greg’s Hallmark. You League’s Annual Holiday can also purchase a Home Tour on Saturday, ticket from a Brandon December 10 from 10 a.m. Service League to 2 p.m. You can tour member. three impressively decoratTicket holders will ed homes. You may even have the opportunity get some great ideas and to shop at the GFWC start some new traditions of Brandon Service your own. League’s Holiday This year’s tour will Gourmet Booth and showcase three whimsical in “Ghosts of and beautifully decorated Christmas Past.” Don’t miss the magic of the homes located in Valrico Swanson said, GFWC Brandon Service League’s “These are two of the near Sydney Rd., in Annual Holiday Home Tour on Riverview just off of Saturday, December 10 from 10 most popular extras a.m. to 2 p.m. Gibsonton Dr. and in on the tour. Our Valrico near Pearson Rd. members are fabuBradlee Swanson, President of the lous bakers which makes the gourmet GFWC Brandon Service League said, booth a must see spot on the tour. The “These homes were selected because of ‘Ghosts of Christmas Past is rapidly the different styles that are representative becoming a popular stop as well. We feaof the owners. Contemporary, traditional ture all varieties of pre-owned and gently and antique are the basic themes of loved Christmas decorations at very reathese homes and the owners are sure to sonable prices.” play up each style with their holiday In addition, the GFWC Brandon décor.” Service League will be offering handSwanson added, “There are lots of made Christmas ornaments for sale at wonderful things about this tour. Each the refreshment booth located in one of home is very different so there is somethe decorated houses. All proceeds from thing for everyone. Traditional trees the GFWC Brandon Service League’s paired with specialty themes, DIY projAnnual Holiday Home Tour are given to ects, antiques and Christmas fun are all Brandon area non-profits and to Brandon part of this year’s tour.” area high school art programs. Tickets to the Holiday Home Tour are For more information on the tour and just $20. Tickets are available at TMarie’s to become a sponsor for as low as $100, Fashion and Gift Boutique, Essentials please contact Swanson at 662-4371.

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December 2016

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Ace Golf Owners Add To Course Roster Staff Report

By Kate Quesada

HOA News & Photos Welcome & Winter Break Camp At Rivercrest Are you active meeting is set for January 9, 2017 in your homeownat 6:30 p.m. All er’s association? Rivercrest CDD The Osprey meetings take Observer wants to place at the help promote and Rivercrest share events and Clubhouse locathappening in your ed at 11560 community through Ramble Creek our monthly HOA Dr. in Riverview. Corner column. For more inforIf you have any mation, email upcoming events Rick.Reidt@riveryou would like to promote to residents throughout Rivercrest Hosts the area or if you Rivercrest Winter Break Camp is a great Winter Break had a successful way to keep the kids busy while school is Camp HOA event you’d out in December. Looking for like us to tell everysomething fun to keep the kids occuone about, email The deadline pied over winter break? Sign them up for the Rivercrest Winter Break to get information for the Riverview Camp for a week of sports, games and Apollo Beach area edition is the and fun. The camp takes place the 15th of the month. weeks of December 19-23 and Rivercrest CDD Announcements December 27-30. The cost is $105 a week for non-after school clients. The Rivercrest Community Development District (CDD) Board of Field trips and lunch on field trip days are included. For more informaSupervisors Meeting for December, tion, visit originally scheduled for December or call 843-9460. 19, has been canceled. The next

The families in for everyone in the the Plantation area.” Palms in Land The real first O'Lakes wanted for Tampa Bay golf their club back. After courses is the 18the popular golf hole miniature golf course and restaucourse that has rant closed in 2014 opened at and several failed Plantation Palms. suitors, the commuThe course was nity partnered with built next to the local Ace Golf ownclubhouse and feaers Bill Place and tures tropical landSu Lee to restore scaping, waterfalls, and reopen the pub- Owners of Ace Golf, Bill Place and Su Lee fountains, trick stand with their family. They recently lic golf course that shots, and is lighted helped to reopen the Plantation Palms winds through their Community Golf Course in Land O’Lakes. for night play. community. “Some golf The renovation started in May. New operators complain that fewer people greens and manicured fairways are are playing golf”, said Place, “but this back. The clubhouse has a new coat of does something about it. Lots of kids paint, but, the club is not the same. To and families will come out to play miniaensure the new club’s success and to ture golf, see the big golf course, and make it more available to the general maybe work their way up to it. public, Ace Golf added an Irish pub, Place and Lee started the Ace Golf miniature golf, and a lighted driving Ranges in Brandon and Riverview over range. A new banquet room will be 20 years ago. The company also owns added next year to host weddings and and operates the Pebble Creek Golf events. The new Mulligans Irish Pub Club, Wentworth Golf Club, and recently opened to the public with Crescent Oaks Country Club. Mulligans sweeping views of the golf club. It is Irish Pub and the new Miniature Golf modeled after Ace Golf’s two other pubs Course at Plantation Palms are at in New Tampa and Tarpon Springs. 23253 Plantation Palms Blvd., Land There is now an Irish-themed family pub O’Lakes. Hours are Monday to Thursday with high, beamed ceilings, Irish murals, 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Friday and Saturday an expanded menu with salads, burgers, 11a.m.-10 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m.-9 sandwiches, dinner items, and pub fare p.m. The restaurant and the miniature like fish n chips and shepherd’s pie. golf are open to the public. For more According to Place, “An Irish Pub is a info, call 996-4653 or visit plantationnatural fit for a community golf course and appeals to more than just golfers. For more info on Ace Golf, visit aceWe want this to be a neighborhood pub

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Sisters Help Readers Find Their Next Adventure At Bookworm Used Books

By Amy Schechter

their lives, they In his musbegan writing ings on a another amassrenowned ing books that career as an provide passauthor, Stephen ports to the King noted, imagination at “Books are a prices everyone uniquely can afford. portable magic.” They even They have the have two rooms ability to transdedicated to port and transchildren and form readers, young adults. and they possess something Jean Cummins & Patricia Burris, co-owners of the This author Bookworm. could hard pull truly enchanting between their pages, especially the ones her toddler from the children’s room, and made of paper. In a digital world, one still with the holidays approaching, I’ll be back to pick up some stocking stuffers for must experience the profound allure of picking up a good book, feeling it on your the entire family in the form of books and handmade crocheted crafts. They have fingers, and breathing in the pages. great deals on everything from paperSisters, Patricia Burris and Jean back to hardcover with most inventory Cummins know this well, as co-owners ranging from $.25 to $6. Customers can of Bookworm Used Books, a wonderful bring their gently used books and earn niche nestled in the heart of Riverview. store credit as well. Are you a teacher Their cozy store boasts a wide variety of books for the most voracious read- looking to stock your classroom or are you simply looking for an adventure or a ers. They have everything from science glimpse into a life you haven’t lived yet? fiction and fantasy to travel and historical Look no further. fiction to sports and cookbooks. If you Bookworm Used Books accepts have a hankering for a genre, you can be cash or local checks only. For more inforsure to find it satiated. When asked why mation, please call 443-0968 or email they started this store, Burris’ answer is simple: “We always wanted to do it.” She You can also visit their Facebook page at and Cummins have always possessed a love for reading and for the comUsed-Books-287129554631542/. They munity. Both women are retired nurses are located near the Riverview Flea having spent their entire careers at the Market at 7414 Commerce St. in VA hospital giving back to those around Riverview. them. When they closed that chapter of

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Volume 14, Issue 12

December 2016

Page 9

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Gayane Stepanian To Lead RCMA

By Bill Coats

Gayane A. Stepanian, an executive with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami-Dade, has been selected as RCMA’s next executive director. Stepanian is to take the position of Barbara Mainster, who joined RCMA in 1972 and has been executive director since 1988. RCMA is Florida’s largest nonprofit child-care provider, with more

thrilled to join others who are absolutely dedicated to delivering world-class child care and education for our most vulnerable kids.” The search for a new executive director was complicated by Mainster’s impressive legacy. She has led RCMA to open more than 100 child-care centers during her tenure. And she has transformed thousands of lives as RCMA hired people from farmGayane A. Stepanian has been selected as working backgrounds and RCMA’s next executive director. than 70 locations in rural trained them to Florida, including three charter deliver cuttingschools. edge child care. Stepanian’s selection ends a “It’s extremely important that we search dating back to June 2015, not look at this as an attempt to when Mainster informed her Board of replace Barbara, because we can’t do Directors and RCMA’s staff of 1,600 that,” said Board member Michael that she was planning to retire. Stuart, who led a search committee of Mainster, 75, introduced Stepanian to RCMA Board members. RCMA staff by email last month. Stepanian is set to join RCMA “I think you will all agree that on January 2. Since 2014, she has Gayane is a wonderful addition to the been Director of Grants Development RCMA family,” Mainster told the staff. for the Boys & Girls Clubs in Miami. “I like her, and know you will, as well.” She is a child safety expert with “I am inspired and humbled to degrees in psychology and education, join RCMA,” said Stepanian, 45. “I am and is a mother of three teenagers.

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Page 10

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Build A Toy With Santa At MOSI

By Grayson Kamm

It looks like too Santa Claus will many boys and girls be dropping by his have been good this workshop to share year, because Santa is pointers and holiday running out of room at cheer with his toythe North Pole and making helpers. Come he’s adding an take a photo extra Santa’s with Santa Claus Workshop at the at MOSI from 10 a.m. Museum of Science & to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Industry (MOSI) in December Tampa. He needs your 3. Santa will be back help to make sure his at MOSI for brief 90elves can make all of minute visits the toys they’ll need on December 4, 10, for this holiday sea11, 17, and 18. son. “To me, the best Included kind of gift is a gift you is adding an extra workshop at make yourself – espewith MOSI admission, Santa MOSI this holiday season. Bring the kids can come to the children to help the elves make the cially if you’re a Idea Zone® creativity toys needed for this holiday season. kid. Santa’s Workshop lab and make real at MOSI gives toys to take home and give to family and kids the friends. Santa’s Workshop at MOSI conchance to tinues through January 3, show their 2017. Santa himself will visit the workcreative sides shop during the first three weekends in and make December (see below for details). something Idea Zone® at MOSI will become a memorable Minecraft-inspired winter wonderland, and unique for a friend or family memcomplete with a cubic Christmas tree ber, instead of only choosing a gift off a and Minecraft model train. With help shelf,” said Molly Demeulenaere, MOSI from MOSI’s elf-trained staff, guests can President & CEO. get hands-on with: cardboard creatures, No reservations are necessary and retro toy-building classes, Santa Sleuths hands-on Santa’s Workshop activities - MOSI's Elf on a Shelf has are included with MOSI general admisraided MOSI's secret stocking full of 3Dsion. printed toys a few good Santa Sleuths MOSI is open every Tuesday are being sought to join in the reindeer through Sunday and is closed seasonalgame and help find the lost toys hidden ly on some Mondays, visit for around MOSI, and live science shows. daily hours.

Witness The Wonder Of Jesus Through One Man’s Eyes At Bell Shoals Baptist Church

By Amanda Boston

Bell Shoals Baptist Church invites you to experience The Wonder of Jesus Through One Man’s Eyes, a musical and theatrical production, at the Brandon campus on Saturday, December 10 and Sunday, December 11 at 6:00 p.m. This Christmas performance is presented from a unique perspective as it retells the story of Jesus’ life through one of his disciples. The event is free, open to the public, and suitable for all ages. This year’s production is not your typical

Bell Shoals Worship Choir and Orchestra

ful night.” The Bell Shoals’ Worship Choir and Orchestra is set to tickle the ears of the audience with a more contemporary vibe of Christmas tunes. The ensemble welcomes

Christmas pageantry with its cast fashioned in archaic costumes gathered around the babe in the manger. But rest assured, the play is biblically sound and transports the audience back 2000 years to the birth of Jesus. The story also continues with a depiction of Jesus’s ministry, death, and resurrection through the eyes of Simon Peter. The Wonder of Jesus Through One Man’s Eyes is the brainchild of Worship Pastor Jason Millsaps, who began collaborating in February with long time friend and award-winning Christian narrator and scriptwriter, Mac McConnell. The multi-talented McConnell, also known for his brilliant 6 one-man dramas, will portray Simon Peter in the production. Millsaps’ vision is a fresh approach to the Christmas message presenting the full Gospel with a modern day emphasis. According to Millsaps, “It’s going to be a memorable and power-

Dave Cleveland, one of the world’s premier guitarists, who has recorded and toured with top music artists like Steven Curtis Chapman, Point of Grace, and Michael W. Smith. In addition to the spectacular music and stage talent, a free app called Offline Lights is available for download. Although the app is not essential for viewing, it will add some fun elements to enhance the audience’s experience. Bell Shoals Baptist Church of Brandon is located at 2102 Bell Shoals Road, Brandon. For more information on the event, please contact the church at 689-4229 or visit or on social media [Facebook, Instagram & Twitter] @bellshoals.

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Page 11

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Hess & VanLandschoot Orthodontics Free Care to Children in Need The smile of a child is known to light up a room; however, some children never get to experience that feeling. Some are ashamed of their smiles and carry that burden with them into adulthood. Dr. Michael Hess and Dr. Toby VanLandschoot are working to change that. Through Smile for a Lifetime Foundation, they are providing the gift of a beautiful smile to children who need it most. They are proud to announce their new chapter; The Hess & VanLandschoot Orthodontics Branch of Smile for a Lifetime-Hillsborough and Manatee County, will provide eight scholarships to recipients in the Riverview, Lithia, Apollo Beach, and Parrish areas. Founded in 2008, the Foundation is a charitable non-profit organization that provides orthodontic care to individuals who may not have the opportunity to acquire assistance. The Foundation is built on the principal of creating self-confidence, inspiring hope, and changing the lives of children in a dramatic way. They believe that the gift of a smile can do all this for a deserving individual who can use this gift to better themselves and their community. “Our goal is to reach children in our communities who have not had the opportunity to get orthodontic help because of income, parents with illness or other family issues that may put the need for braces on the back burner,” Marketing Director, Samantha McGuire stated. Local


Staff Report

care is provided by Dr. Michael Hess and Dr. Toby VanLandschoot of the Riverview, Lithia, Valrico, Apollo Beach, Brandon and Parrish areas. Collectively the doctors will award eight scholarships in 2017. “By improving the smiles and selfconfidence of a child today, it will have an impact on them for the rest of their lives,” commented Dr. Hess. Any child over age 12 is eligible to apply for a scholarship from the Foundation, which will provide orthodontic services from beginning to end. Each applicant must fill out an application, provide letters of recommendation, prove to be a responsible individual and show how they’ve participated in community. Approximately two scholarships are given out quarterly. Applications are being accepted until March 31 for the first quarter of 2017, but applicants are encouraged to apply year round and to re-apply if they don’t get selected in the initial process. “The Foundation allows us to streamline the process of helping those in need and we’re able to reach more people this way,” explained Dr. VanLandschoot. “It’s extremely rewarding for both Dr. Hess and I and our team as well.” For information contact Samantha McGuire at Hess & VanLandschoot Orthodontics at 645-4377. The main office is 11970 Boyette Rd. in Riverview. Visit

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Page 12

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Lights Will Shine Bright Around Town During Holiday Season

Compiled by Michelle Colesanti

Here are a few places you can visit with your family to help get into the spirit of the season. Wonderful light displays that include fun for the family. If you know of additional displays locally, please email

Wonderland Of Lights New Display Offers Family Fun Brandon will be the home of The Wonderland of Lights Drive Thru, at the Hillsborough County Fairgrounds, 215 Sydney Washer Rd. in Dover. This premier holiday light show and winter festival will be a spectacular celebration and brings back a family holiday tradition that so many have grown to love. Opening Thanksgiving Night, November 24 and running through Saturday, December 31 (6-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 6-10 p.m. Friday & Saturday). This 38–day event incorporates beautiful animated and still light displays that will dazzle the young and

“the young at heart.” Plus, it will offer a blend of fun, family activities and entertainment sure to please all. Take some time to stop at the Christmas village featuring horse-drawn wagon rides, North Pole train ride, amusement rides, food and crafts. The show is produced by Massachusetts based North Pole Productions, known for their shows in Branson, Missouri and other locations across the country. To save time at the gate, tickets for the drive-through can be purchased online at under the events tab. Prices are: Vehicles (up to 8 passengers) $20; Season's Pass $35 (vehicles only); coaches, limos, mini vans (9-24 seating) $35; Motor Coaches (25-50 seat-

6 Weeks thru 12 Years

ing) $75.

Christmas Lane At The Strawberry Festival Fairgrounds

Christmas Lane started humbly enough. Over 30 years ago, a young boy started hanging Christmas lights in front of his childhood home in Dover. As with most things that grow, Christmas Lane began feeling growing pains several years ago. With the display outgrowing the family yard setting and a parking lot that was becoming overwhelmed by the growing Christmas Lane crowds, something had to change in order to accommodate Christmas-loving crowds. Christmas Lane has a new home at the Florida Strawberry Festival Grounds, 2508 W. Oak Ave. in Plant City. Over 1.5 million lights will adorn over 200 Christmas trees, from 4 to 40 ft. tall. There is a train taking children through a winter wonderland which includes a tunnel of lights, along with several new rides. Santa and Mrs. Claus, along with his elves, attend nightly in his sleigh. Children share their wishes and the parents capture many memorable photo opportunities. Enjoy real characters such as Rudolph

and Frosty the Snow Man make spontaneous appearances and a complete nativity scene demonstrates the real reason for Christmas. There are larger-thanlife items on display, such as a Christmas Castle, two 10 ft. toy soldiers, a 14 ft. reindeer, and even a stuffed polar bear flying a small airplane. Christmas Lane will be open Nov 25 - Dec 25, 2016. From Friday, November 25 – Thursday, December 15, the hours are 6-10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 6-9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. As Christmas approaches from Friday, December 16 – Saturday, December 25, the hours will be extended to 6-10 p.m. For more info, visit

FishHawk Lights

Residents Tim and Christine Chefalas decorate their house, located at 6023 Palomaglade Dr. in Lithia, each year. The Christmas light display is set to music. As you drive by, tune in to 107.7 FM. You can enjoy the lights from Thanksgiving through the first of the New Year.

Christmas Light Show In Apollo Beach

Apollo Beach Christmas Light Show, with over 100,000 lights synchronized to Christmas songs featuring a 20 ft. mega tree and leaping arches, can be found at 486 Florida Circle North and will run through Monday, January 2.

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December 2016

Page 13

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Children’s Board Releases Over $10 Million In Grant Funding

By Kathy L. Collins

For non-profit Children are healthy and governmental and safe; Children organizations legally are developmentally operating in Florida, on track; Children who provide quality are ready to learn; services for children and Children are and families, the supported and supChildren's Board of portive families. Hillsborough County In keeping with its vision that Hillsborough Those served would has announced County will be recognized as one of the be residents of top five places in the nation to raise funding of Hillsborough County children, the Children’s Board has $10,300,000 in and primarily pregreleased over $10 million in funding for grants for the nant women and grants. upcoming fiscal families with children year. The funding is split between up to age eight. Leading Grants and Uniting Grants. Scott said, "This is an opportunity for According to Paula Scott, Director of the Children's Board and community Public Relations, "A Leading Grant is a providers to work together and serve their contract awarded typically to small organi- respective missions. We encourage applizations that are primarily neighborhood cants to implement program practices and/or faith-based demonstrating innovaand models that have been proven as tive service delivery models in one strate- effective in reliably producing the intended gic focus area to meet emerging needs or results when implemented with fidelity." target underserved populations. The fund"The Children's Board Hillsborough ing range is $5,000 to $65,000. A Uniting County is a voter approved taxing authoriGrant is awarded to an organization that ty that ensures there is a dedicated fundprimarily demonstrates a neighborhood ing source of tax dollars that are invested focus and collaborative approach to serv- and spent wisely in programs that will ice delivery that supports one or more provide the best outcomes for the chilstrategic focus areas. The funding dren and families within Hillsborough request range is $75,000 to $525,000." County," said Kelley Parris, Executive The deadline for applications is Director of the Children's Board March 9, 2017. Grant applications are Hillsborough County. " Voters in posted on the Children's Board website at Hillsborough County pay a portion of their under budgeting property taxes to the Children's Board to tab and funding opportunities. fund the programs. The top priority is to Funding can potentially be provided make sure children of all ages are for programs that utilize evidence-based, healthy, safe and prepared to learn," evidence-informed or promising practices added Parris. in one or more of the following areas: Visit

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Page 14

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Cross-Bay Ferry Kicks Off Six-Month Program To Test The Waters

By Marie Gilmore

A new pilot service are to program by eventually offer a Tampa Bay South County Ferries, to transdock to transport port residents the 6-8,000 across the bay MacDill staff from the members from Convention Southern Center dock to Hillsborough St. Petersburg County to MacDill Pier hub, is daily. Under curCross-Bay Ferry policy advisor Ed Turanchik welcomes community members aboard the rent plans, the underway and Provincetown IV for its inaugural ride between residents will ferry would Tampa and St. Pete. cast their votes for the project by buying tickets to demonstrate if this is a wanted service in our community. The Cross-Bay Ferry pilot project is a regional effort designed to demonstrate water transportation service options to the residents and businesses of the Tampa Bay region, helped in part by a $4.8 million federal transportation grant. The project is a collaboration between St. Petersburg, Tampa, Hillsborough and Pinellas County and will operate for six months accept the current transportation reimbetween the Vinoy Basin in downtown bursement option for military and there St. Petersburg and the Tampa would be no additional cost. But, to showcase the need, the Convention Center in downtown current passenger ferry service, operTampa. ating with the 98-ft. 149-seat Ferry service officially kicked off Provincetown IV, catamaran, is up and on November 1 and local elected offirunning to showcase community cials, representatives from local usage and viability. Chamber of Commerce organizations Frontier Communications has and personnel from MacDill were invitsigned a major sponsorship deal to ed to a special ride to learn more. provide free ride tickets every “We are very thankful to Sandra third Sunday of the month from Murman and all the elected officials November through April. who worked hard to make this hapDubbed “Ride Free Day, Powered pen,” said Ed Turanchik with Akerman by Frontier,” the deal covers the full LLP, policy advisor for the project. “This is a special trip today from South $10 one-way ticket price and will begin Sunday, December 18, January County with some special representatives from MacDill to give them an idea 15, February 19, March 19, April 16. Among community supporters and of what their transportation could be. partners of the Cross-Bay Ferry: The Our intention is to get MacDill up and Tampa Bay Times, Frontier running a.s.a.p. This pilot project is Communications, iHeartMedia, Clear very important.” Channel Outdoor, the Tampa Bay Air Force Tech Sgt. Isaac Dobson Lightning, Tampa Downtown was on the inaugural ride of the ferry and is excited see its plans to come to Partnership, St. Petersburg Chamber, Visit Tampa Bay, South County as an option for comVisit St. Petersburg Clearwater muting to MacDill. “Anything that will and The Pirate Water Taxi. save me time and money is welcome Currently rides are $10 per pasfor me,” said the father of a 9-monthsenger each way and bicycles are welold baby who lives in Riverview and come on board for $1 each way. has been assigned to MacDill for six years. “Currently, I take the toll road to Children under 3 ride free. For information and advance tickets, visit work every day.” The future hopes for the ferry

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Volume 14, Issue 12

December 2016

Page 15

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

New Mission BBQ Brandon Celebrates Opening Of Its 40th Location

By Tatiana Ortiz

The http://missionAssisting Veterans of When diners walk America Support into Mission BBQ they Team (AVAST) can see framed memColor Guard orabilia mounted on marched in forthe walls such as phomation to begin tos, patches and more the grand openthroughout the restauing ceremony of rant. Mission BBQ Mission BBQ’s 40th location in From the left: Bill Leahy Brandon. A smil(Market Partner), Brian ing crowd greeted Poole (Operating Partner), the color guard as Steven Sullivan (Director of they approached Operations), Steve Newton Photo courtesy of Bri’s Eye Photography (Co-Founder), Bill Kraus the outside build(Co-Founder) ing of Mission does offer an array of food and bevBBQ to perform their routine. Before the erage items on the menu such as pulled ceremony concluded, individuals placed pork, smoked brisket, Maggie’s Mac-Ntheir right hand over their heart to recite Cheese and fresh cut fries, kettle iced tea the Pledge of Allegiance. A Veteran sang and much more. Mission BBQ does proThe Star-Spangled Banner. Co-Founders vide a catering service for any occasion Bill Kraus and Steve Newton from and takeout. Mission BBQ mentioned that every day at Diner Roscoe Turner said he enjoys 12 Noon the National Anthem gets sung. barbeque and thought his chopped beef “We do what we do for the love of brisket sandwich, Maggie’s Mac-Nour soldiers, firefighters, police officers, Cheese and baked beans at Mission first responders—all our loved ones in BBQ tasted great. service,” Kraus and Newton said. As being all about the community, On September, 11, 2011, Mission Mission BBQ gives back to the Special BBQ began operation in Glen Burnie, Operations Warrior Foundation, along Maryland. Co-Founders Bill Kraus and with many other organizations. Steve Newton from Mission BBQ continFor more information, visit missionued the journey with their franchise and It is located at 1504 W. expanded it to 11 other states. Besides Brandon Blvd. in Brandon. Hours of the state of Maryland, Mission BBQ can Operation are Monday through Thursday be found in Delaware, Pennsylvania, 11 a.m.- 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday 11 Indiana and North Carolina just to name a.m.- 10 p.m. and Sunday 11:30 a.m.- 8 a few. For a full list of locations check p.m. Call 830-9618.


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Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” -Luke 2:11

I love Christmas and so does the Brenda Wade Team! We love the cooking, the anticipation & the excitement of being with the ones we love! We celebrate the friends & family that touch our lives and The Baby that still changes our world! We pray you have a wonderful Christmas surrounded by the ones you love, making sweet memories to last long after the season has passed!

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December 2016

Page 17

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

RobZ Celebrates 10 Years in Valrico

By Kate Quesada

With the holireally want.” days fast approachThe RobZ ing, it is time to start Fitness Website, at thinking about New www.Rob-ZYear’s fitness, docutions and Rob ments more than Zulkoski and his staff 100 written and at RobZFitness want video testimonials to help. from clients who have undergone a For the first time fitness journey with in the business’ 10 Zulkoski’s team. years in Valrico, “These are people Zulkoski is promotlike you who live in ing a discount to Rob Zulkoski and his staff at RobZFitness new clients who sign are offering a discount for new clients that the area and have up for fitness servic- sign up before the New Year to celebrate trusted us to get 10 years at their Valrico studio. them back into es before the New shape,” he said. Year. “When people think of losing weight, we “I am offering a 25 percent discount are the experts in the area.” for signing up before the New Year Valrico resident Bob Hendryx credits because time slots fill up once the holidays hit,” said Zulkoski who has helped Zulkoski and his team with helping him thousands of clients reach their weight lose 105 pounds in less than a year. loss and fitness goals over the last 10 “When I realized it was time for me to get years. healthy, Rob gave me a few options for Zulkoski’s 2,400 sq. ft. studio, located getting started,” said Hendryx, who used a combination of healthy eating, cardio in the Stein Mart and Fresh Marketanchored Lithia Crossings plaza on Lithia exercise and weight lifting workouts to start losing body fat and maintain a Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico, offers personal healthy weight. “I am now doing stairand group fitness training, with aerobic classes such as BODYPUMP, Step, Boot climb training every Saturday at the Bank of America in Tampa, and I have started Camp, CXWORKS and Core. jogging two miles to the grocery store on “We are different from other services Sundays. It has been interesting to see out there because all of our trainers have my progress change from merely a desire at least a four-year degree in Exercise to lose weight a year ago to being fit, athScience and Wellness,” said Zulkoski letic and eating healthy.” who has 24 years of personal training Visit for experience. “Not only are our trainers extremely educated and experienced, but healthy recipes, fitness tips and class and studio times. For more information, call they really care about our clients. We 371-3700. know how to get them the results they


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We have finally hook. Unless had a couple good they are pretty cold fronts push excited, the bite through and hang is fairly soft and around long enough gentle. I always to cool the water tell my clients, “If temperatures you think you got throughout the bay. a bite, you did – In December, we Set the hook!” sometimes switch Once hooked, gears and do some they are feisty different types of Dr. Caroline Waraksa, with a beautiful “door fish and have fishing. Flounder and mat” sized flounder caught fishing a colder tremendous day in Tampa Bay with Capt. Travis Yaeckel. power for their sheepshead are a few of my favorites that are great to fish size. sheepshead must be at least 12” for during the winter months. total length to harvest, the bag limit is 15 Sheepshead have already infiltrated per person, and they provide excellent the flats, shell bottom creeks, canals, and table fair. rivers. Most of the fish that we have been Another fantastic winter species in seeing are on the smaller side, but northe Bay area is flounder, undoubtedly mally this means that the deeper rock one of the most unattractive fish, but piles and edges will be holding the big probably one of the best tasting. This ones. The two locally known reefs, time of year, the flounder will move in on “Bahia Beach & Port Manatee” are great large sandy areas in big numbers. For places to start looking for the bigger con- flats fishing, target potholes and creek victs. Deep water canals and bridges will mouths with substantial flow. Use the also be holding them. Look for oysters or same rig for sheepshead, but you might rocks and focus on fishing around strucwant to switch to a circle hook. On the ture. As far as the rig goes, I like about warmer days, a small live greenback or 24” of 15-20 lb. Ohero fluorocarbon shrimp on the bottom will be best. leader paired with a No. 1 live bait hook. Captain Travis Yaeckel is a native resiDepending on the depth and current, I dent of the SouthShore area and charters will use Joyfish split shot weights to genfull time for Redfish, Snook, Trout, and tly get the bait to the bottom. Live or cut Tarpon. He is owner and operator of Instinct Fishing Co.,based out of lower Tampa Bay. pieces of shrimp will work just fine, or if To book a charter, call 830-FISH or visit you can get some fiddler crabs they can’t Catch him on resist them. The key to catching Tampa Fishing Outfitters Radio Show on sheepshead is “feeling” the bite. They Sunday mornings from 8-9 a.m. at 1040 are known for eating the bait right off the a.m. Sports Talk the Team.

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Page 18

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Outdoor Skating Returns To Tampa’s Curtis Hixon Park With Winter Village

Brandon Ballet Presents The Nutcracker At Riverview High School Auditorium

The yearly through tradition of outChristmas day. door ice skating You can rent has returned to skates and have downtown 90 minutes of fun Tampa. This on the ice for just year, organizers $12. The rink’s hours are have added a Monday through twist to the much Thursday 4 to 9 beloved event by p.m.; Friday 4 to including the 10 p.m.; new Winter Saturday 10 a.m. Village Shops. to 10 p.m.; All of the exciteSunday 10 a.m. ment takes place to 9 p.m. When right along the Give yourself a treat and visit Tampa’s Winter Hillsborough river in Tampa’s Village in Curtis Hixon Park. You can enjoy outbeautiful Curtis door ice skating, shopping in the Winter Village County Schools Hixon Park, Shops and sharing a holiday inspired snack pre- are out, the pared by the creative people at Sono Café by hours are 10 located at 600 N. Mise en Place. a.m. to 10 p.m. Ashley Dr. in The Winter Tampa. Village Shops are open Thursday to A temporary ice skating rink has Sunday through Saturday, December 24. been erected along the river. The new They are also closed on Thanksgiving. Winter Shops are made up of more than The hours for the Winter Village Shops 20 rotating holiday market boutiques. are 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday The boutiques are set up in PODS storand 12 to 7 p.m. on Saturday and age containers. Vendors will be selling holiday decorations, clothing, toys, jewel- Sunday. There is no fee to enter the Winter Village and dogs are welcome. ry and much more. When I visited on Sunday, it was a In addition to the shops and ice skatglorious Florida day. This is a great coning, visitors can enjoy holiday treats at cept located in a wonderful park alongthe snack bar which sells roasted chestside the Hillsborough River. Get out there nuts, snowflake lollipops, chocolate bark and visit it for yourself. You will instantly and candied nuts. You can try a terrific get into the holiday spirit if you do. holiday menu at the Sono Café by Mise For more information, and to get a en Place. They offer sandwiches, soups list of the shops and when they will be and festive sweets along with beer, wine there, please visit www.wintervillagetamand holiday inspired beverages. The ice skating rink is open now

Tree.” All of the scenery in Brandon Ballet’s performances is state of the art. There are handCome see the fantastic performances by the highly talented painted backdancers of the Brandon Ballet as they perform their version of the drops and custom holiday classic The Nutcracker. built props. The The Brandon Ballet will perform the costumes are professionally designed Tchaikovsky’s holiday classic, The and made specifically for this performNutcracker, featuring stunning new choreance. ography by Artistic Director, Octavio This year, Sugar Plum Fairy and Martin, fantastic sets and wonderful cosSnow Queen will be alternated between tumes this December. There will be four Brandon Ballet’s own professional balleriperformances at Riverview High School, nas, Chloe Freytag and Sarah Metzler. located at 11311 Boyette Rd. in The Nutcracker Prince will be danced by Riverview. On Saturday, December 10 Brandon Ballet’s professional dancer, performances will be held at 2 p.m. and Reid Ginoza. According to Martin, “The 7:30 p.m. On Sunday, December 11 perrole of Clara this year is danced by a stuformances will be held at 2 p.m. and 5:30 dent of Brandon Ballet, Hailey Cheren, to p.m. accurately portray the age of the characThe Nutcracker tells the story of a litter.” tle girl named Clara who is given the gift Many of the roles in the Brandon of a wooden toy nutcracker by her Uncle Ballet’s version of The Nutcracker, will be Drosselmeyer. The magic happens when by two casts to give the audiences the the toy soldier comes to life and takes chance to view different artists’ interpretaClara on a magical journey through an tion of the characters. In addition, the enchanted winter wonderland where she majority of the cast are Brandon resiencounters dancing snowflakes, an eledents. Martin said, “Come see and enjoy gant Snow Queen and the majestic what we believe to be the best Sugar Plum Fairy. Nutcracker production in the area. With This year Martin adds a new twist to more than seven backdrops, state of the The Nutcracker story. Martin said, “In this art scenery and props, in the newly year’s version, all of the toys, dolls and updated Riverview Auditorium, this year’s decorations under the tree come to life to new storyline will surely entertain and dance for Clara’s delight. Uncle delight audience members of all ages.” Drosselmeyer uses his magic to make For tickets, or Clara the same size as the toys and dolls. or call 684-4282. All of Act Two is under the Christmas

By Kathy L. Collins

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December 2016

Family Friendly Holiday Events Offered By Center Place Of Brandon

By Kathy L. Collins

Center Place in Rodriguez added, Brandon will offer an “We always have a array of family friendgift wrapping station ly fun holiday events where the kids can this December. You wrap their projects will not want to miss as gift for a loved Center Place's time one.” honored holiday Chick-fil-A at events designed to Lake Brandon get everyone into the sponsors lunch for holiday spirit. the children. Santa Come see Santa will be on hand for All of Santa’s Elves will be on hand to help Claus as he helps visits so bring your get you and your family into the holiday spirit at several event hosted by Center cameras. Parents light the giant Place of Brandon including the 9th Santa’s and adults can Christmas Tree Workshop on Saturday, December 17. located on Clayton enjoy lunch sponAve. on Wednesday, December 7 begin- sored by Boston Market for just $5. ning at 7 p.m. In addition to great holiTickets are required for this event, day entertainment courtesy of several and no tickets will be sold at the door. local dancers and singers, you can visit Please bring a new, $10 unwrapped with Santa Claus and even get a photo. Christmas toy in exchange for the ticket Parents please bring your own cameras. to the event. You can get your tickets at You can also enjoy some delicious Center Place. All toys will be donated to refreshments served by the Community ECHO of Brandon. Roundtable. The event is free and open Center Place is also holding a to the community, so come out and Holiday Coloring Contest for children enjoy a holiday tradition that has been ages three, four and five and ages six, taking place for over 30 years. seven and eight. The coloring sheet can Next, Center Place will hold its 9th be picked up at Center Place or you can Annual Santa's Workshop on Saturday, download it at www.centerplacebranDecember 17 beginning at 11 a.m., Please submit your masterAccording to Lisa Rodriguez, Marketing piece by Monday, December 19. Director for Center Place, “This is our Winners will be contacted prior to special Christmas event for kids, and it Christmas and will receive a one year has been a big hit for many years now.” Family Membership to Center Place. This event is designed for children five Center Place is conveniently locatyears old and up. They will enjoy 10 difed at 619 Vonderburg Dr. in Brandon. ferent arts and crafts stations and will For more information, please visit make their own individual projects or call including decorating sugar cookies. 685-8888.

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition



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Dr. patients leave my Andrew Daley office knowing that I is known in the and my staff care Brandon comabout their wellmunity for being,” said Dr. Daley. being a kindPatients enjoy a hearted prifull range of compremary care hensive health servicphysician who es including preventareallytakes tive health and welltime with his ness counseling and patients. So it diabetic teaching. is no surprise Medical records are that his new electronic, ensuring event, his Dr. Daley (center) meets with his patient family efficient access and during this first annual “Daley Dose” luncheon accurate safekeeping “Daley Dose” of the first anniversary of Daley & luncheon was in celebration while maintaining the Associates PrimeMed of Tampa Bay in a great suchighest standards for Brandon. cess. This the privacy and secuwas part of the celebrations for the first rity of records. anniversary of his own practice, Daley & Ada Gilmore has been a patient for Associates PrimeMed of Tampa Bay in many years and would never dream of Brandon. changing her favorite primary care physiAccording to Dr. Daley, “When cian. patients fail to make their appointments or “Dr. Daley really takes time to answer are lost to follow up, they receive a all of my questions during every appointreminder from my team to come in for ment and he manages my health care their “Daley Dose,” hence the term. needs,” said Gilmore. This seems to work well, helping to Dr. Daley & Associates PrimeMed of improve patient compliance and overall Tampa Bay is a traditional Internal regard for their health and wellness. Medical practice and is open to ages 18 Dr. Daley is a resident of Brandon and up. For patients’ convenience, most and has been since his reassignment to commercial insurance products, including MacDill Air Force Base back in 2003. He Aetna, AvMed, Blue Cross and Blue was a managing partner of Cornerstone Shield, CIGNA, Humana, Tricare, United Medical Care of Brandon for eight years, Healthcare are accepted along with a where he dedicated himself to bringing variety of Medicare products. world-class care to his patients. The office is located at 631 W At Daley & Associates PrimeMed of Lumsden Rd. in Brandon and is open Tampa Bay, the same world-class care Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and attention is provided to all of his Dr. Daley also has an office in Bradenton. patients. “It is very important that my To make an appointment, call 530-0903.


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Page 20

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

WOW Fresh And Fast Celebrates Two Years In Brandon

By Kate Quesada

By Tamas Mondovics

Hurricane Otto Pushes Official 2016 Hurricane Season to 15 Named Storms east of McClellanville, South Carolina. The season reportedly cost more than $10 billion dollars in damage. Sadly, and more importantly, the 2016 season was all too deadly as it reportedly claimed close to 1,800 lives, most of which were from Hurricane Matthew in the Caribbean. It took 11 seasons for The 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season posted more than a dozen named storms including Hurricane Hermine and the the death count to again season’s strongest; Hurricane Mathew. The latest hurricane rise to such a level. In of the season, Otto, pushed the number of named storm to 2005 an estimated 4,000 15 and was an appropriate reminder for residents to heed people were killed by hurthe warnings and to be storm-ready. ricanes. After leaving 15 named storms As reported by the NWS, some of including Hurricane Hermine and the top wind gust reports from Matthew in Matthew in its wake, the 2016 hurricane Florida were: season gave clear testimony to the need Cape Canaveral, 107 mph; Daytona to be prepared, ready and to heed the Beach, 91 mph; Jacksonville 87 mph; warnings. South Ponte Vedra Beach, 84 mph; The season began in mid-January, Melbourne, 70 mph and Orlando Area nearly five months ahead of the official where gusts over 60 mph were measstart, with Hurricane Alex, the first Atlantic ured. January hurricane since Hurricane Alice Both Hurricane Hermine and in 1955. Matthew has brought widespread flash The season also surprised many with flooding and record river flooding that a late hurricane, Otto, the seventh of the unfortunately affected many local area season, which formed on November 21 in residents living near the Alafia and the southwestern Caribbean Sea. Otto is Manatee Rivers. the latest to form in the region since To assist local residents impacted by Tropical Storm Odette in 2003. As of the Hurricane Hermine, Hillsborough County, writing of this story, Otto left nine people the state of Florida, and the Federal dead in Costa Rica. Emergency Management Agency have This hurricane season ends on partnered to open a Disaster Recovery November 30, but for the Atlantic region Center last month at the Keysville proved to be most active since 2013. Recreation Center, 9390 Edison Road in Six of the 14 storms were categoLithia. rized as hurricanes, eight were tropical The center is now closed, homeownstorms and three became major ers, renters and businesses with storm (Category 3 or larger) storms. damage still have until the end of the According to the National Weather month to apply for FEMA relief online or Service (NWS), Hurricane Matthew made by phone at at, or landfall in Haiti and eastern Cuba on by calling (800) 621-3362. October 4 as a Category 4 storm. Residents were assisted to find out Matthew hammered the Bahamas on about programs and services available to October 5-6 as a Category 3 and 4 hurrihelp them. Fortunately, each hurricane cane. season has an end, and the Atlantic is The southeastern United States was looking very quiet. next as Matthew brushed alongside the For more info about storms and the coasts of Florida, Georgia, South 2016 hurricane season please visit Carolina and North Carolina, making one official U.S. landfall on October 8, south-

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Serving fresh has been open and food, fast, is a some choices are winning recipe for seasonal and only WOW Fresh and available for a short Fast, a Brandon time. restaurant offering “We started high quality meals out slow with our from salads and menu so that we sandwiches to could really get a pizzas and burgfeel for what the ers, which celecustomers here brated its second WOW Fresh and Fast Manager Ryan Castle would want. Over and his team recently celebrated two years at the two years we anniversary last the restaurant's Brandon location. month. have added so “We can make our food fast and it is much to it, and it has been great fun figurgood because it is always fresh,” said ing out the flavor combinations people Director of Operations Bill Kadow. “All of enjoy the most,” said Kadow, who has our meals are made to order or just worked in the restaurant business since made. We don’t have microwaves or he was 16 years old and also operates serve anything lukewarm.” the Carrollwood WOW Fresh and Fast Some of Kadow’s favorite items on location which celebrates its one year the menu are the garlic parmesan chickanniversary this month. en wings, which he describes as “life A family business, with Kadow’s changing,” the Southwest Chicken father, Bill Kadow Sr., as president, WOW Sandwich, and the menu-staple cheese Fresh and Fast is working hard to burger. He also raves about the homebecome an important part of the commumade ice cream sandwich which uses a nity by setting up spirit nights and cooking fresh baked rocky road cookie and vanilla at events with local schools and donating ice cream. to charities such as the Joshua House “Our menu has something for everyand the Gramatica Family Foundation. one’s palate,” said Kadow. “We have “We have been in the restaurant some people who come in every week business long enough to know that comand order the same dish because they munity is where your business comes love it so much, but others who come in from,” said Kadow. “Brandon is such a all the time and order something different great place for us to share our food.” because they love all of our food and WOW Fresh and Fast is located at want to make sure they aren’t missing 1426 W. Brandon Blvd. and can be any of it.” reached at 864-8008. Visit Many of the menu items have been to see the menu added over the two years the restaurant and for more information.

December 2016

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

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Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

County Promotes Local Trails Through New Hiking Program

By Tamas Mondovics

Hillsborough recent press County officials release. “The trails are hoping to lure are spread residents out from throughout the the living rooms County so people to the great outcan hike near doors and take a home or explore hike. new areas.” Advertised on Parks officials its newly emphasized that redesigned webPhoto Courtesy of Hillsborough County the listed hikes A group of residents from the Brandon Park range in length site, representaand Recreation Center hike the Bobcat Trail at from less than half tives of the Upper Tampa Bay Park, one of 19 sites County’s Parks a mile to four miles earmarked for the five-month Hiking Spree program. and Recreation and include such have unveiled a new program that they popular regional parks as Lettuce Lake, say encourages people to exercise, get Upper Tampa Bay, and Lithia Springs. out in the fresh air, and experience nature Take advantage of the lesser-known by exploring the numerous parks and pre- scenic parks, such as Blackwater Creek serves, including a Rolling Acres Fitness and Alafia Scrub preserves, that are also trail in Valrico, at 707 S. Miller Rd. on the list. Appropriately named, The Hiking Each of the 20 trails in the Hiking Spree, the program features 20 hikes and Spree program is classified by rank and is supported by Friends of the County severity as A-All Purpose, B-Basic or CParks, a nonprofit organization that startPrimitive; with the rating of 1-Easy, 2ed in 1988 to promote financial and comModerate, 3-Strenuous. munity support to the County’s Parks and Participants are allowed to create Recreation department. one other trail of their choice and for the After an online registration, residents sake of safety are to dress appropriately who are able to complete at least eight of and bring plenty of water. the hikes between November 1 and Those who have completed at least March 3 will receive a patch, or a medaleight hikes can turn in their forms at All lion for a walking stick from the People’s Life Center or locally at Brandon Hillsborough County Parks and Recreation Center, 510 E. Sadie St. in Recreation department. Brandon and Gardenville Recreation “The Hiking Spree Program is Center, 6215 Symmes Rd. in Gibsonton. designed to introduce people to the Completed forms can also be mailed County’s varied parks and preserves,” to: HCPRD Hiking Spree, All People’s Life said Todd Pratt with Hillsborough County Center, 6105 E. Sligh Ave., Tampa, FL Communications and Digital Media in a 33617.

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach

December 2016

Volume 14, Issue 12

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completed her medical degree at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale in 2005 and a residency in family medicine at Valley Hospital Medical Center in Las Vegas, NV in 2009, where she served as chief resident from 20082009. She previously practiced in the outpatient setting at West Florida Hospital Clinic as well as Singing River Hospital System in Mississippi, and is a member of the American Osteopathic Association, American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians and the Escambia County Medical Society. An open house to meet Dr. Amos and staff will take place on Friday, December 9 from 3-4:30 p.m. TGMG is open Monday to Friday from 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. and Dr. Heather Amos is now accepting new patients. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 844-7500.

Joyful Mini's came about through a family recipe and donations for a friend's birthday. Joy Best established her company in 2014, but it was not fully operational until recently. The mission is to provide "joy" to others through delectable and creative cheesecake miniatures. Joyful Mini's offers a great traditional dessert with a little twist, in 12 different Photo by Ed Booth, Huth & Booth Photography flavors. A few of these flavors are Xscape Movie Theater open is now open in Riverview. Strawberry, Caramel Nut and Oreo cookie. Holiday favorites are Pumpkin, Sweet potato and Mint. Two sizes are offered - the mini and the mini cup. Mini's eliminate spoilage from purchasing a full pie. Since these cheesecakes are about the size of a jumbo muffin, it is just the right size for an individual. Mini cups are great for parties, social gatherings Joy Best with her Joyful Mini’s. Palm Tree Roofing is offering huge holiLennar Opens Two New and meetings. day savings on your new roof installed in Xscape Theatresfor Townhome Communities in Prices range from $2.50 per mini Dr. Heather Amos. December. Call for your free, fast and Riverview 14 on Riverview cup and $5 per mini. Visit www.facefriend estimate - 333-6320. Visit Tampa General November 18. The popularity of townhomes is or call to place Medical Group Riverview 14 feaincreasing across the Tampa Bay area, in orders at 941-889-9157. Visit Joyful Announces Opening of TGMG Apollo particular beyond Tampa’s urban core. tures leather electric recliners and Mini’s at A Simpler Place Farmer’s Beach reserved seating. They also feature two Lennar is contributing to the rise of townMarket, 9903 Carr Rd in Riverview Tampa General Medical Group Xtreme theaters with 70’ screens for the homes in fast-growing South Hillsborough beginning November 2016. (TGMG) Apollo Beach has officially ultimate movie going experience. County. opened serving patients ages 18 and Xscape Theatre –Riverview 14 is Lennar recently opened two townXscape Theatres Opens Riverview 14 older. The medical center is located at located at 6135 Valleydale Dr (aka home communities in Riverview – The Over 50 guests were on hand, 6488 N. U.S. Hwy. 41 in Apollo Beach. Progress Blvd at I-75). Reserve your Hammocks at Summerfield Crossings including Greater Brandon as well as Dr. Amos is a board-certified osteoseat in advance by visiting Greater Riverview Chamber members to pathic family medicine physician. She Continued on next page partake in the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Business Column Continued.............

By Michelle Colesanti

Volume 14, Issue 12

home” discount as well. For more information, call 727-501-1264 Monday to Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

and Riverview Lakes Townhomes, which with other artists. Vanessa wants this are both move-in ready. The Hammocks to be a gallery for artists of all mediat Summerfield Crossings offers two- and ums, art lovers and for kids to be introCandlelight Celebration three-bedroom floor plans ranging from duced to art. At Hillsboro Memorial 1,541 to 1,634 sq. ft., priced from If you are an artist, have an artist On Sunday, December $159,990 to $169,990. For more space, in your life or you are an art lover, 11 at 6 p.m., the Riverview Lakes Townhomes offers three- please visit The Creative Artist on Hillsborough Memorial and four-bedroom floor plans ranging Tuesday–Friday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Photo courtesy of Ed Booth, Huth and Booth Photography Funeral Home, 2323 W. and Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. It is from 1,747 to 2,162 sq. ft. priced The Creative Artist, LLC Celebrates Studio Opening. Brandon Blvd. in Brandon, from $189,990 to $214,990. will host a Candlelight high-quality price tag. Direct Family Townhomes in both comCelebration. Care offers fee-for-service care, and munities have covered patios to According to Christopher most typical procedures, labs, and provide outdoor living space, Murray, Family Service Manager, “The medications are offered at or below and each master bedroom has holiday season can be a particularly difregular retail prices. an en suite bathroom with douficult time of year for families that have At Direct Family Care, patients ble sinks and a walk-in closet. experienced a loss. The ceremony are billed directly, which means they Also, Lennar’s townhomes gives families an opportunity to celepay a monthly membership fee and are built with block construction brate the life and legacy of their loved receive a variety of benefits unheard between each home to minione while also bringing other families of at traditional primary care pracmize noise. coping in similar situation together. It is tices. Patients receive expanded In addition to townhomes, Photo courtesy of Ed Booth, Huth and Booth Photography always nice to see attendees sharing access to the physician and healthLennar is building single-family TeleVoIPs Celebrates With Greater Riverview Chamber of care providers, extended and relaxed stories and memories with one Commerce. homes at another. Refreshments will be served. visits, and a variety of diagnostic and located in the Main Street Shops, east Summerfield Crossings. Lennar is also Please RSVP at 689-8121. procedural services at no extra of Nativity Catholic Church, a 933 E. building single-family homes in a number cost. Direct Family Care offers highof other Riverview communities, including Brandon Blvd. in Brandon. Email theLuLaRoe LuLaPalooza Brandon quality care, no insurance codes, no or call The Summit at Fern Hill, Ballentrae, Florida Event long wait times, and no worries. 863-514-0223. Visit Enclave at Boyette, Oaks at Shady Stop by the office located at 6150 Eight Consultants with over 8,000 Creek, South Fork and Waterleaf. N. US Hwy. pieces of Lularoe clothing will be under The Hammocks at Summerfield 41 in Apollo roof on Sunday, December one Your Doctor’s Visit Just Got Crossings is located at 13201 Wellington Beach or call 18 from 1-4 p.m. at The Barn, located Easier Hills Dr., and Riverview Lakes now to sched- in Winthrop Town Center,11349 Townhomes is located at 10673 Lake Dr. Sasha Noe, DO, PhD, ule your first Bloomingdale Ave. in Riverview. There Montauk Dr.. has launched Direct Family appointment will be plenty of giveaways just for Care, a new direct primary care with Direct showing up. For more information, TeleVoIPs Celebrates With Greater (DPC) clinic, and the only one of Family Care email its kind, serving southern Riverview Chamber Of Commerce at 641-0007 TeleVoIPs began back in 2009 and Hillsborough County and the or email Black Rock Bar & Grill Now In South Shore communities, where it is recently hosted its first ribbon cutting For more Brandon to celebrate its success. Grant Baxley, all about the small town doc culture information, Black Rock Bar & Grill opened its paired with modern technologies to CEO of TeleVoIPs, was on hand to visit doors October 27, 2010 in Hartland, deliver an exceptional patient experimake the official cut and to introduce Michigan, a small town in a very tightly ence. Direct Family Care ensures that his team to the large audience of Multiple Services Offered By Armor bonded community. It brought an patients receive exceptional care from attendees. In addition to GRCC memGuard Painting & Australian-style dining doctors and healthcare providers who bers, they greeted members of their Coating, LLC experience unlike any are able to spend quality time with their BNI group and many of their current Armor Guard Painting & other. By pairing family patients. clients. There were also examples of Coating is a full service recipes, a 755-degree Unlike traditional primary care pracsome of the many exciting products painting company offering volcanic stone, and a tices, Direct Family Care is a direct prithey offer for your office. interior and exterior painting love for food, the mary care facility, and their unique busiTeleVoIP is located at 1723 S. and coatings. The Morganroth family ness model makes quality healthcare Kings Ave. in Brandon. Call 655-5100 painting/coating of tile roofs, knew they were a peraffordable to people whether they have visit pool decks, garage floors fect fit for the restauinsurance or not. Direct primary care The Creative Artist, LLC and driveways are offered along with rant industry; however, they had no brings healthcare back to what it once Celebrates Studio Opening other services for interior including wall prior restaurant experience, working was — a service dedicated to patient paper removal, popcorn removal, dryonly off their dream of what Black Rock Vanessa and Richard Martin of care and not doctor paperwork. wall repairs and texture. could become. With a very determined The Creative Artist were thrilled to celDirect primary care facilities don’t Free in-home inspections are family and help from the community, ebrate the opening of their studio with generally bill through insurance compaoffered along with a free written estiBlack Rock grew into something their GRCC family. In November, an nies, so Direct Family Care doctors and mate. There are written warranties on remarkable. To learn more about Black official ribbon cutting ceremony their providers are free to work directly all work and special discounts are Rock Bar & Grill, visit www.blackrockmarked the occasion. with patients without worrying about offered for veterans and seniors. Online The Creative Artist is a space ded- paperwork, annoying billing codes, and specials from $250 to $550 off are Black Rock Bar + Grill is located at icated to artists in the community, to the ensuing insurance battles. Patients offered. Visit for 804 Providence Rd. in Brandon. Call show and sell their work and network receive high-quality care without the more details. Ask about the “show 445-4111.

December 2016

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

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Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Story by Tamas Mondovics

Schools Host Financial Aid Nights, Students Excel On AP Exams and FL-ALAS Honors Vazquez Area Schools To Host Final Set Of Financial Aid Night

Hillsborough County Public Schools have hosted a series of Financial Aid Workshops for seniors and their families, leaving two more events now scheduled for the first week of December. The six previous workshops were held at area high school locations, among them Armwood and Plant City and Riverview, and have provided an overview on how to apply for postsecondary financial aid conducted by a university or college financial aid expert. The workshops covered the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), deadlines, state scholarships and Bright Futures Scholarships. According HCPS officials the district, in collaboration with LEAP – Hillsborough College Access Network, Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay, Hillsborough Community College and United Way Suncoast, is also participating in a series of FAFSA Labs where students and families can get support from college representatives and trained community volunteers. Families can get information on the labs through their school or after attending the financial aid workshops. For more information about HCPS, please visit

HCPS Students Taking And Excelling On AP Exams

Speaking highly of teachers throughout the nation, President Barack Obama was quoted, “We recently learned that America’s high school graduation rate went up to 83 percent…the highest on record.” Obama added, “Teachers deserve more than our gratitude, they deserve

Family & Owned d e t Opera

our full support.” Of course, higher graduation rates are not the only way to measure success on the part of students and teachers. In a recent report, Hillsborough County Public Schools officials were pleased to announce that the number of HCPS students taking Advanced Placement (AP) exams and scoring at a pass rate of 3, 4, or 5 continues to increase, giving students more opportunities for higher education. By the numbers, district officials said that the number of HCPS students taking AP exams increased by 7 percentage points from last year. In addition, the number of students earning a pass rate of 3, 4, or 5 increased by 4 percentage points. The district is especially proud of the results from its Hispanic and African American students. The number of Hispanic students taking AP exams increased by 18 percentage points over the last year while maintaining a 44 percent pass rate. African American students scoring a 3, 4, or 5 went from 18 percent two years ago to 28% this past year, a 10 percentage point gain. “We continue to push for open access into our Advanced Placement classes at our high schools. These results show our students are looking for more opportunities and our teachers and staff are giving them the support they need,” said Hillsborough County Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins. School officials said that taking AP courses and passing the related exams gives students more opportunity to be accepted into a four-year university and allows them to earn college credits, for their major or as an elective, eliminating the need to take the classes in college which saves

them money and time. The graphic shows the increase over the years in the number of AP exams where students scored a 3, 4, or 5. For information, visit

dent population in Hillsborough County Public Schools. “Dr. Vazquez has dedicated his career to educating children,” said Superintendent Jeff Eakins. “I am proud of the way he embraces diversity and empowers the growing FL-ALAS Hispanic communiHonors ty,” Hillsborough Vazquez joined County Public Hillsborough School’s Chief County Public Of Staff Alberto Schools in July, Vazquez     2015, and previousHillsborough ly, served as the County Public of Superintendent Schools’ Chief of the Diocese of St. Staff, Alberto Petersburg. Vazquez, was Vazquez has honored this the Associate been month as the Superintendent of recipient of the Schools for Queens Latino Excellence North in Brooklyn, in Education New York and was Award. a Principal in Bronx, The Florida New York. He has Association of Hillsborough County Public Schools’ Chief also served as an Latino of Staff, Alberto Vazquez. Adjunct Professor Administrators for higher education and Superintendents (FL-ALAS) celeinstitutions including Notre Dame brated Vazquez, with the Wings of University, Fordham University, and Inspiration Award, for his commitment Ana G. Mendez University System. and work with Latino students who make up 35 percent of the total stu-

Immediate openings for 2 and 3 year olds at our Symmes Road location. Creative Curriculum Scholastic Curriculum in our VPK classes. Early Learning Academy Extracurricular Activities - Dance, Soccer, and Zumba Three Separate Playgrounds Nutritious Snacks and lunch included Before and After School care Sessums, Collins, Summerfield Elementary, Summerfield Crossing, and Southshore Academy 11719 Symmes Road, Riverview

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December 2016

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Local Theme Parks Provide Family-Friendly Holiday Fun During Christmas Season ‘Tis The Season For Christmas Town At Busch Gardens Tampa

The annual holiday tradition, Christmas Town™, returns to Busch Gardens® Tampa Bay with more than two million twinkling lights, festive treats, holiday entertainment and unique attractions, including the all-new addition of the beloved Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. The popular event takes place on 23 select dates from Friday, November 25 to Saturday, December 31, with fanfavorite entertainment and new twists: New this year is Rudolph’s Winter Wonderland, located in the Celestial Crossing. Meet and take photos with Rudolph, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius and Bumble. Play holiday games and indulge in Yuletide treats while scenes of the beloved story of Rudolph the RedNosed Reindeer come to life. Enjoy Santa’s House presented by Coca-Cola®. Guests can also expect the return of fan-favorite shows including Christmas on Ice, Carol of the Bells light show and the Holiday Hills Brass Band. Christmas Town is open until 10 p.m. on select dates and will close at 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. For New Year’s Eve, the event will remain open until 1 a.m. Christmas Town is included with any annual pass, Fun Card or daily admission to the park. Guests who purchase their 2017 Fun Card now can visit Busch Gardens for the remainder of 2016 for no additional cost, including the popular Christmas Town event.

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party At The Magic Kingdom

Join Mickey for live entertainment, spectacular fireworks and an oh-so-jolly holiday parade at his very merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom. Enjoy fun, magic, cheer and enchantment for guests of every age. Held from 7 p.m.-12 Midnight at Magic Kingdom Park, this annual yuletide event will take place on November 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, 15, 18, 27 and 29 and December 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 11, 13, 15, 16, 18 and 22. Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy and Pluto are dropping by dressed in their Christmas best. Peter Pan is flying in from Never Land, Alice and the White Rabbit are hurrying over from Wonderland and Woody and Jessie from Toy Story are galloping in for this holiday ho ho hoedown. Plus, Snow White and Dopey, Pinocchio, Jiminy Cricket and many more surprise guests will be stopping by. This joyous performance is the perfect yuletide treat to share with your family. Your favorite characters will ring and sing in the holidays with carols old and new. You’ll witness the splendor of Cinderella Castle aglow with enchanting and ever-changing holiday illuminations. Feel the warmth and wonder of the season as this unforgettable performance is Christmas-wrapped up in one sensational, snowy, show-stopping finale. Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party requires a separate admission ticket. Prices vary depending on your chosen day to visit. For more info on prices and to purchase tickets, visit

Celebrate The Holidays At Universal Studios Florida And Islands Of Adventure

Many people will never get to see the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in person, but can experience it here. Universal Studios Florida® comes alive during the holidays from December 3 to January 1 with balloons and floats beyond your imagination, marching bands, Santa, and seasonal singalongs for the little ones. The fun continues with Grinchmas™ at Universal’s Islands of Adventure®, featuring the Grinchmas™ Who-liday Spectacular. You can really get into the spirit by enjoying performances by Mannheim Steamroller on December 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18 at 7 p.m. Join Barney™ and his friends for a magical musical show full of songs at "A Day In The Park With Barney™!" Located inside Universal Studios Florida ® . Grab your sunglasses and get ready to rock and roll. Jake and Elwood perform festive favorites like "Santa Claus is Coming To Town," "Blue Christmas," and more with snow on Delancey Street in Universal Studios ® at the end of each show. For more information on holiday events, visit

Sea World’s Christmas Celebration

The season meets the sea at SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration on select days from November 25 to December 31. At SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration™ carols fill the air, a sea of lighted trees sparkles over the lake in a wintery, watery wonderland, and worldfamous skaters twirl on ice. Enjoy stunning live shows, and delightful entertainment inspired by the natural world, SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration is where holiday memories are made. Stroll the lakeside Christmas Market and savor the cinnamon and spice holiday scents of delicious treats as you shop for unique, artisan-crafted gifts. O Wondrous Night® is a 30-minute show features puppetry and dance against the backdrop of traditional Christmas music that will charm, entertain and delight people from all walks of life. SeaWorld® invites you to experience the power and beauty of the Shamu family in a nighttime holiday show, Shamu® Christmas Miracles. New this year, you can meet Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and friends at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration. Rudolph leads the way to

Christmas joy and holiday fun with allnew ways of making spirits bright. Christmas comes to life on a stage of ice, jewels and light as skaters dazzle and delight in this show-stopping, ice skating extravaganza in Winter Wonderland On Ice. The other stars of the show are the towering fountains of water dancing on the lake and fireworks that light up the night sky after the last ice show of the evening. Take a walk through a wintery, watery wonderland and immerse yourself in a sea of holiday trees. For more information, visit

ICE! At Gaylord Palms Features A Charlie Brown Christmas

New for 2016 is ICE! Featuring A Charlie Brown Christmas by Charles Schulz. Watch Charlie Brown rediscover the true meaning of Christmas as the beloved classic story unfolds through interactive ice sculptures and displays. Experience the Peanuts gang in iconic scenes such as their holiday play rehearsal, Snoopy’s decorated doghouse and Charlie Brown choosing the perfect Christmas tree. Everything is hand-carved from two million pounds of ice. Other attractions include a walkthrough holiday attraction, kept at a chilly 9 degrees, four ice slides, The Frostbite Factory (live carving zone) and a Nativity scene carved from crystal clear ice. Enjoy Alpine Rush Snow Tubing in the Alpine Village and zoom down an eightlane tubing hill that's fun for all ages and is covered in real snow. Christmas in Orlando is fun for the entire family. Gaylord Palms Resort is located at 6000

Compiled by Michelle Colesanti

W. Osceola Pkwy. in Kissimmee. ICE! will run Friday, November 18 through Sunday, January 1. For more info, visit

Christmas Bricktacular at Legoland

Bricktacular is Legoland’s annual holiday celebration. It returns to deck the halls with a 30-ft.-tall Christmas tree made of thousands of LEGO® and DUPLO® bricks, festive decorations, a life-size LEGO Santa, reindeer and sleigh, holiday-themed scavenger hunts with prizes, and opportunities to build with LEGO alongside Master Model Builders. Meet LEGO Santa and LEGO Toy Soldier during daily park appearances and end the evening with a notso-silent-night fireworks spectacular set to classic Christmas melodies. Bricktacular will take place on December 17-18, 24-25, 26-30. Purchase tickets at

Florida Aquarium Holds Aqua Eve

Come celebrate New Year's Eve, Saturday, December 31, with a splash at The Florida Aquarium’s Aqua Eve. Enjoy fantastic live music, complimentary food, beer and wine along with a champagne toast - and the best view in town for an amazing fireworks display at midnight. The Florida Aquarium's Aqua Eve party is the premiere New Year's Eve party in Tampa to ring in 2017. Early Entrance is 8: 30-9 p.m. Main event runs from 9 p.m. -1 a.m. Ages 21 and over only; ID required. To purchase tickets, visit

Christmas in the Wild At Lowry Park Zoo

The traditions of Christmas will be abundant at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo this holiday season! Be immersed in a festival of lights shining brightly. Encounter amazing animals at night, enjoy Christmas carolers and live entertainment, and marvel at the skills of artisans. You can sample holiday treats and seasonal refreshments at the Christmas Lodge. Enjoy Christmas in the Wild on November 25-25, December 2-3, 9-10, 16-23 and 26-30. Lowry Park will be open until 10 p.m. Visit or call 935-8552.

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Life Writing Classes, U.S. Postal Santa Program & More…

Lighthouse Revival Center

A Lighthouse Christmas Presents: An Offering To The Newborn King on Friday, December 9 at 7 p.m. This is a musical producCompiled by Michelle Colesanti, tion to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Christmas of Hope Life Story Writing/Memoir Classes To will take place on Friday, December Begin At Bloomingdale Regional 16 at 6 p.m. A special Christmas Library service with a delicious dinner Life Story Writing/Memoir classes will served immediately after, gifts given start once again the third week of by Santa Claus to kids between the January at the Bloomingdale Regional ages of 2-10 (children must be presLibrary, 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in ent), then receive a packed food Valrico. Three classes will run simultanebasket to take home. ously for 10 weeks each. Lighthouse Revival Center is One begins Tuesday January 17, located at 7211 S. 78th St. in Riverview. 2017 from 10:30 For more information, a.m.–1:30 p.m. call 677-5220 or visit Another class begins Friday, January 20, Benjamin Uher 2017 from 1:30– Performing With 4:30 p.m., and the Heidelberg University third class starts Symphonic Band Saturday, January Benjamin Uher of 21 from 1:30–4:30 Apollo Beach is a memp.m. ber of the Heidelberg All skill levels University Symphonic are welcome. Pick up a brochure in the Band for the 2016-17 academic year. The lobby of the library or email band, under the direction of Jonathan for more Waters, gave its fall concert, a folkinformation. inspired program titled Music of the Students are required to plan on People on November 12. attending all ten classes. The classes are Uher is a freshman majoring in sponsored by the Friends of the Biology and Chemistry. Bloomingdale Regional Library and are free to the public. To register, go to the U.S. Postal Service Letters From Santa “Ask Desk” inside the library or email Program Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, and the U.S. Postal Service can help you Celebrate The Birth of Jesus At prove it when Santa replies to your child’s

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letter, complete with a North Pole postmark. Have your child write a letter to Santa and place it in an envelope addressed to:

Santa Claus, North Pole. Later, when alone, open the envelope and write a personalized response. Insert the response letter into an envelope and address it to the child. Add the return address: SANTA, NORTH POLE, to the envelope. Affix a First-Class Mail stamp to the envelope. Place the complete envelope into a larger envelope — preferably a Priority Mail Flat Rate envelope — with appropriate postage and address it to: North Pole Postmark, Postmaster, 4141 Postmark Dr., Anchorage, AK 995309998

Volume 14, Issue 12

“Letters from Santa” must be received by the Anchorage, AK, postmaster no later than December15. Santa’s helpers at the Postal Service will take care of the rest. Be sure to share the experience on social media using #LettersFromSanta. Tips to save paper, write Santa’s response on the back of your child’s letter. If you keep them together, your child will also be able to recall what he or she wrote. When responding as Santa, make the response as personal as possible by highlighting your child’s accomplishments over the past year, for example, helping around the house, receiving good grades in a particular subject at school or participating in community service activities. This is a great activity to do at Thanksgiving that the whole family can enjoy, including parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and other caregivers. The Letters from Santa program adds to the excitement of Christmas and is ideal for interesting youngsters in letter writing, stamps and penmanship. The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations. FREE ESTIMATES

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Sweepstakes Highlights Best Of Shop Local By Marie Gilmore This holiday season, the Osprey Observer is partnering with local businesses to highlight the best of Shop Local gift giving. The campaign is called, the Osprey Observer, A Few of Our Favorite Things and we have gone to local businesses and asked them to give us ideas of a few of the top items available this holiday season. From now until December 16, we will be collecting Our Favorite Things all throughout the community and putting them together in one giant gift basket that will be given out in a Sweepstakes for our readers. “We have so many great items coming in and someone is going to be very excited to receive all of these great items from the businesses in our community,” said Kerrie Hoening, Advertising Sales Manager.

“We have never done a program like this in the paper and we are excited to share some of the treasures from our local small businesses with our readers.” Bridget Jenkins Wilson, owner of Cardinal Roofing and a member of the Valrico/FishHawk Chamber of Commerce said the Chamber is also focused on encouraging local shopping this holiday season, “Anything we can do to keep our local businesses in the spotlight is great for our community,” she said. “And, this is a great opportunity for Osprey Observer readers to have a chance to win an amazing holiday gift.” To enter, email Sweepstakes to or fill out the entry form and send in by mail, fax or email. Good luck and thank you for shopping local!

Enter the Sweepstakes to win a prize basket of items from The Favorite Things Shop Local Campaign. Why would you like to win the Shop Local Sweepstakes Basket?

Name: Address: Phone: Email: Community:

Enter to win online at, fax to 657-4469 or mail to 918 Lithia Pinecrest Rd., Brandon, FL 33511.

Be Happy Gifts Give Back And Music Showcase Lessons & Performing Arts

Be Happy Boutique seeks out gift and apparel items that give back to the world.

Invest In Gifts That Give Back To The World At Be Happy Boutique As you enter Be Happy Boutique, warm teas perfume the air and guests are surrounded by fashionable, unique lines of apparel, shoes, accessories, home décor, specialty gifts, and candles. Positive energy radiates throughout the entire space, and best of all you will find something here for every taste and every budget. Owner Tonya Antaki seeks out items that give back to the world in some way so you can feel good knowing that the gifts you purchase will have additional impact around the world. A great gift idea for your special

friend or family member is Jewelry Snug. It is the perfect gift for the girl who has everything. This is for the friend who loves to travel and look good when she arrives at her destination. (Don't forget to buy yourself one!)

By Michelle Colesanti Instrument rentals start at $10 (if you don’t want to make a purchase). If you sign up online, the instrument will be delivered to your school. All your music needs can be found at Music Showcase,

Gift Basket Item: Jewelry Snug Value: $30

Be Happy is located in the Marathon Plaza, 11369 Big Bend Rd. in Riverview. Call 677-2300 for more information or visit

A Few Of Your Favorite Things Can Be Found At Music Showcase Music is the international language that is understood and enjoyed by all. Share your love of music by offering voice or instrument lessons to your favorite student.

which offers competitive pricing on sheet music and books, in-house repair shop, private and group lessons. Is your child interested in musical theatre, acting, or maybe photography? Sign them up at the Florida Academy of Performing Arts at Music Showcase. Music Showcase is located at

402 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon. For more information, call 685-5998 or visit and Gift Basket Item: Music Lessons Certificate Value: $70

Enjoy Outdoor Time With Great Gift Ideas From Recreational Pools What’s on your holiday gift list? Recreation Pools, Spas & More can help you. Are you looking for spas and hot tubs? It has Tampa Bay’s largest selection – Bullfrog, Calder, Sunrise, Dream maker & more. Maybe your dad wants a Big Green Egg (maybe he doesn’t know it yet)! Visit and see the big selection of the most versatile outdoor barbeque on the market. It is the ultimate cooking experience and dad will love you for it. Recreational pools also offer

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Breathe Easy at Salt Grotto, Soar To New Heights At The New iFLY Indoor Skydiving address respiratory and skin ailments. Give the gift of good health to your loved ones. There are both adult and children’s Salt Room Therapy. Acupuncture, therapeutic massage and foot reflexology are also offered. Another great gift idea is a Himalayan Salt Lamps, which are said to help blood flow, improve sleep cusalso improve asthma and and tom built outdoor kitchens. allergy symptoms. It is located at 509 W. Gift The Salt Brandon Blvd. in Brandon. Basket Item: Grotto is Pool Lounge Call 324-8824 or visit located $50 Value: www.recreationalpoolssGift in Plaza Basket Item: Bella Salt Lamp Value: $25 Shopping Center, Visit The Salt Grotto 1026 And Breathe Easier This Holiday Season Bloomingdale Breathe easier Ave. in Valrico. It is open this holiday season. Tuesday - Friday from10 Relax in luxury at a.m. – 7 p.m., Saturday The Salt Grotto. Dig from10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and your into the sand Sunday from 12 Noon-4 like salt and fill your p.m. It is closed on lungs with safe, natuMonday. For information, rally salty air. With each breath, call 324-8946 or visit inhale micro-particles that holistically

By Michelle Colesanti

iFLY also offers kid and adult parties, corporate team building opportunities, educational experience for students and much more. It will be open seven days a week. iFLY is located at 10654 Soar to New Heights Palm River Rd. in Tampa. For more At iFLY Indoor information, call 773-4359, email Gift Skydiving Basket Item: or visit Enjoy some hol- Family 4-Pack iday time creating Indoor Skydiving Value: $240 amazing memories Repair Your Gift with your family. Why Basket Item: Home Damage take flight at iFLY? - To In Time For The Family Basket with experience the fun and $50 Visa GC and Holidays With accessories sensation of flying in a safe environRestoration Value: $120 One ment. From age 3 to 103, almost anyRestoration one can fly. New to the Brandon area, One offers remediation and restoration of residential or commercial properties for damage caused by water, fire, smoke or mold. It is locally owned and operated by David and Heidi Adams. Trained and certified technician’s offer 24/7 emergency service. iFLY Indoor Skydiving now brings this For more information, call 888experience locally. Imagine the excite466-8055. Visit ment when loved ones find out they or will have the opportunity to fly like a bird.

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Holiday Coin Collections, A DayDreams Day Spa Escape & New Sporting Goods Corbin’s Stamp & Coin Can Help You Start Treasured Family Heirloom Are you looking for the perfect keepsake gift for a family with a new baby? Maybe you are interested in starting a new family tradition by commemorating the Christmas season each year. Holiday coin collections are the perfect way. One ounce pure silver coins are available for $29.95 in a gift box or also as an ornament that can be displayed. Corbin’s Coins is located at 209 N. Kings Ave. in Brandon and is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

13446 Bath Shop. You can make that posBoyhette Rd. sible with a gift card to in Riverview Daydreams. (RiverSprings There are many different types plaza at FishHawk and of spa packages to choose from Boyette Rds. It is a including massage therapy, body, locally owned family therapy, skin car therapy, nail and 1oz Gift Basket Item: business, pedicure treatments. There is Pure Silver and offers Tranquility Theeach a local alternative also a shop that includes spa Journey Gift Boxed or Ornaments for all of your products. “Escape to family’s Pevonia Skin Tranquility” Spa sporting Day Value: $135 Care products good needs are offered. 209 N. Kings Ave. in a family Gift certificates Brandon, Florida 33510 friendly environment are available at the Spa, located at 813-651-3266 that is to home and offers 658 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon or Mon-Fri 9am - 4pm Sat 9am - 1pm competitive pricing. online at *Silver prices subject to change. You will find new and gently used sporting apparel and equipment for A second DayDreams location is all sports. These will make great gifts in Lakeland at 1463 Town Center Dr. for your favorite young athletes For more information on this locathis holiday season. tion, call 863-686-5859. For more information, Gift Basket Item: Enhance Your Photos At call 324-9161 or visit New FastFrame For The Perfect Football Holiday Gift Value: $30 Did you take a special picture Journey To Tranquility At this year while you spent time with DayDreams Day Spa your family, maybe on vacation or at a With all the stress the holidays special event? Surprise your family this bring, what better gift for someone year with a wonderful family picture com(or yourself) is to escape for a few hours to DayDreams Day Spa &

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Stamp & Coin

By Michelle Colesanti memorating this special shared time.

Once you have that beautiful photo, a frame becomes part of the bigger picture, so it’s important to make sure that it brings out the photo in just the right way. When customers bring in their personal items and they are not sure about how to decorate their art, FastFrame owner Alex Roche helps to educate them on how to enhance their item through framing. He offers competitive pricing and has been assisting customers with frames for over 28 years. For more information, visit or call Roche at 655-6400. FastFrame is located at 6128 Winthrop Gift Basket Town Center Ave. Item: Two $40 in Riverview. Gift Cards Hours of operation Value: $80 are Sunday and Monday by appointment only with 24-hour notice and Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m.–8 p.m.

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Gifts Of Fashion At TMarie’s, Gift Of Health From The Campo Y, Gifts For Home At Orange By Michelle Colesanti a.m.-7 p.m. and on Sunday from 12 Noon-5 p.m. It is located at 3407 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico. For more information, call 530-0922. Visit Find Your Perfect Holiday Ensemble At TMaries Fashion & Gifts Boutique TMaries Fashion & Gifts Boutique is your one stop shop for all of your favorite fashion outfits and accessories for the upcoming holiday season. While you are in there shopping for those party clothes, you will also find many accessories including jewelry that would make great gifts for friends and family members. Some brands available at TMaries include Tribal, Elan, Catherine Barclay, Julian Chang, French Dressing Jeans and Cabana Life. T. Marie’s Fashion & Gift Boutique is open Monday to Saturday from 10

Gift the Gift of Health At Campo Y The start of a new year holds a lot of promise. Everyone makes resolutions to eat healthier and to exercise more. This year, it is time to do something about it. By giving a gift of a Campo Y membership to someone, you are letting them know how much you care and want them to live their healthiest lives. Campo Y offers many exercise options for all ages and body types. Gift Basket Item: Many family Luxurious blue velvet evening bag programs and camps with Swarovski crystal embellishment are offered and peacock including design child care Value: $128 while you work out. Other programs

great place to find an inspired mix of great gifts for men, women and chil-

are also offered. For many, Campo Y becomes like a second home. Campo Y is located at 3414 Culbreath Rd. in Valrico. It is open Monday to Friday from 5 a.m.-10 p.m., Saturday Gift Basket from 7 a.m.-7 Item: Family p.m. and Membership for Three Sunday from Months 12 Noon-6 Value: $250 p.m. For more information, call 684-1371. Visit Find That Perfect Wow Gift At Orange Home Accessories Orange Home Accessories is a

dren. It carries home accessories, gifts and jewelry. Debbie Ploor opened this chic shop filled with the eclectic color, artistry, elegance and whimsy of topquality designs. Whether you are looking for something to complete your room décor or a great gift for a hard to shop for friend, this is the place. Orange Home Accessories offers unique gifts for everyone. Orange Home Accessories is located at 1046 E. Bloomingdale Gift Basket Ave. in Plaza Item: S’well Bella. For 25oz bottle and more informaThe Giving Key tion, email (necklace with a key) info@orangeValue: $85, visit or call 681-8686.

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Backyard Birdseed Gifts For Nature Lovers, Tasteful Fruit Bouquets & Your Pet Find Great Gift Ideas for Nature Lovers and Birders At Backyard Birdseed Fly on by to check out the great gift ideas for the nature lovers in your life. A great gift idea is the Squirrel Buster bird feeder, which helps to limit squirrels from making claim to the food. Backyard Birdseed carries premium seed for all types of feeders depending on what type of birds you are trying to attract. You can also mix your own blend birdseed. A wide array of other products is also carried to increase backyard (and front yard) enjoyment for children and birders of all ages., find ideas and problem-solvers for your outdoor living spaces, and discover activities and tools for indoor learning and fun. Backyard Birdseed is located at 3642 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico (next to Carwash on the Green). It is open Tuesday-Friday from 12 Noon-6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from 10

a.m.-4 p.m. It is closed on Monday. For more information, call 816-BIRD (2473) or visit and on FB: Backyard Birdseed. Gift Basket Item: Squirrel Buster & Food Value: $50

Tasteful Gifts From Edible Arrangements Make Great Holiday Treats What better way to say you care than with a healthy and tasteful gift of fresh fruit. With many assortments from Edible Arrangements, you will find something for everyone on your gift list. Choose from many beautiful holiday gift baskets such as the Christmas Tree Bouquet, which is decorated with cantaloupe, “ornaments” made of Swizzle Apple Fruit Truffles®, small

pineapple star “lights”, a large pineapple star tree topper, and a Merry Christmas Gourmet Belgian Chocolate Pop; or an adorable snowman keepsake with a Season’s Greetings Celebration™ bouquet featuring gourmet chocolate dipped pineapple stars, reindeer, and strawberries. Following the traditional Delicious Celebration® bouquet recipe, honeydew, cantaloupe, strawberries, and grapes are scattered throughout to create an eyecatching and wow-worthy effect. There are many other eye-catching and delicious choices. Edible Arrangements can be found locally in the Shoppes at Lithia, located at 3455 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico (571-7200), and also at 10273 Big Bend Rd. in Riverview (Bell Plaza) (672-6111) or order online at Gift Basket Item: 12-count Chocolate Covered Fruit

By Michelle Colesanti

Shop Pet Supplies Plus This Holiday Season For All Your Pet Needs Holiday gift shopping is not just for your two legged family and friends. Your pets will enjoy receiving some new toys and snacks and Pets Supply Plus is the perfect place to find the perfect gift. If you are planning to welcome a new pet member to your family this holiday season, Pet Supplies Plus is the perfect spot to pick up any supplies and goodies for your new family member. You will find everything you might need for dogs, cats, smaller pets, reptiles, birds, and fish. Pet Gift Supplies Basket Item: Plus is GloFish located at Aquarium 1937 E. Value: $50 S.R. 60 in Brandon. It is open MondaySaturday from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. For more information, call 540-0645.

Give Gifts For The Chef, Gifts For Your Outdoors And Gifts Of Jewelry

By Michelle Colesanti

cooking classes - whether you enjoy cooking – or just eating from great date nights to learning about new foods, this is a great gift idea for everyone. It is also Brandon’s Big Green ‘Eggheadquarters’, the ultimate cooking experience. Rolling Pin’s Favorite Things basket will include items for a Florida-style holiday season, with a fun, novelty foodtruck cutting board and a poultry grilling rack for cooking your bird outdoors. These are complemented by everything you need to make the feast flavorful - with a subtropical twist. Rolling Pin is located at 2080 Badlands Dr. in Brandon. Call 6532418 or visit for more information.

Great Gift Ideas And Classes Help Make Rolling Pin A Great Stop For Holiday Gift Needs If you are stuck coming up with creative gift ideas, make a visit to Rolling Pin and you will find something for every chef in your life. Rolling PIn offers a gourmet retail store, cooking classes, Open for Private events, gift cards and lots of great holiday Gift Custom Letterman gift items. Basket Item: Jackets For High If you are looking to bring Small Basket School Student At 1 wine to your host or hostess, Including Rolling Pin has many choices $100 Cooking Class st Sporting Goods GC and $100 in 1st Sporting of quality wines. Products Goods provides the There are many great reaValue: $200 community with quality sons to attend Rolling Pin’s

Martin’s Jewelers Offers Fine Jewelry For The Special People On Your Gift List Martin’s Jewelers has been a staple in the Brandon area for the last 61 years. It will soon be closing its doors and must liquidate its entire inventory. sporting goods and personalization of athletic apparel and letterman jackets, and would be a memorable gift for your high school student. It is something that reflects personality and can be cherished years into the future. “The good thing about our process is that we don’t have to send off the jacket to be made,” said owner Laurel Giardina. 1st Gift Sporting Basket Item: Goods 3 Local High proSchool Team vides Spirit T-Shirts silk Value: $60 screening and embroidery services as well. Many things are provided to customers who walk in the doors. 1 st Sporting Goods is located at 3321 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. For information, call 571-0111.

Great offers on fine jewelry will make you happen and will thrill that special person on your gift list. Come on in to receive up to 60% off on custom jewelry designs and watches. Martin’s Jewelers is located at 664 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon and is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 Gift p.m. Call A Set of 7mm 681-2298 Freshwater Pearls or visit (Necklace, www.marBracelet, & tins-jewelEarrings). Value $135

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Give The Gift Of A Massage, Pool Or Patio, Skin Care And Fashion Everyone The Gift of Health Needs The Can Be Found At Gift of Sunshine State Relaxation Family Care & This Aesthetics Holiday Give yourself or a Season loved one the gift of The holihealth. Gift certificates days can be are available for pura very chase (for every $100 stressful in gift card purchases, time of year. receive $10 free). With the Sunshine State flexible Family Care is your schedule FishHawk Community that Daniella’s Mobile Massage offers, Physican for Health & Beauty. Monica find a convenient time to take that Rivera, M.D. is board break and be good to yourself. certified in Family Daniella offers Deep Tissue, Medicine and Lisa Hart Neuromuscular, Pre-natal and Sports is a licensed medical Massage. The goal is to provide pain Aesthetician. and stress relief through theraSpecializing in peutic massage in the privamedical spa cy of your own home. What services and Gift Basket a great gift to give to aesthetics, it Item: One someone on your list. provides a relaxing MedSpa Hour Daniella is a professetting for: Dermal Fillers Massage sional licensed Massage and Wrinkle-Reducing Value: $65 Therapist, who has 13 years Treatments, of experience and a backMicrodermabrasion and Skin ground in Physical Therapy. For infor- Rejuvenation, Chemical Peels and mation, call 323-4901, email Medical Grade Facials, Permanent Makeup, Facial Waxing (Brow, Lip,

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Chin), along with Skincare Look fantastic this holiday with Products and Consulting. Gift Basket the eye lash extender kit. Sunshine State Family The company is commitItem: Care is located at 16144 ted to connecting people and HydraFacial Churchview Dr., Bldg. A its wonderful products while Value: $165 Ste. 109 in Lithia. For inforproviding the knowledge, the mation, call 651-9396 for resources and the opportunipatient care (Monday and ties to change skin and to Tuesday 8 a.m.-8 p.m., Thursday 8 a.m.-7 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m.-12 Noon), and 540-5110 for the Aesthetic Center (Wednesday 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and Friday 12 Noon-5 p.m.). Visit change lives. Great gift ideas for friends will help them look their best too. The products use Multi-Med™ Therapy, which is designed to deliver the right medicines, in the right formulations, in the right order to transform your skin treating wrinkles, pores and loss of firmness, brown spots, dullness and sun damage, Gift Basket Item: acne, blemishes and Rodan+Fields SPF breakouts, sensitive, Rodan+Fields Will Help You Look Your Best This 30 Sunscreen, Lip irritated skin and facial Holiday Season redness and more. Shield SPF 25, Look your best for the holiTo shop products, Zippered Florida days. Grace McKee is an visit bag Independent Consultant offering or Value: $45 Rodan+Fields Skin Care products. call 766-5040.

December 2016

Holiday Luncheon, Club Meetings, Education Seminar & More…

Page 39

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Picture Yourself At The Florida State Fair

The Florida State Fair Authority invites people across the state and beyond to Compiled by Michelle Colesanti, “Picture Yourself at the Florida State Fair” – the theme for the 2017 event, slated for February 9-20. “We Growing Camellias To Be Discussed want both loyal At January Riverview Garden Club patrons and those Meeting who have not yet The Riverview Garden Club will hold experienced the Fair its January meeting on Wednesday, to join us in making January 11, 2017 at 10 a.m. at the memories that will Riverview Civic Center, 11020 Park Dr. last a lifetime,” said in Riverview. The guest speaker will be Cheryl Flood, execuMaster Gardener Emeritus Eileen Hart. tive director of the She will discuss Growing Camellias in Florida State Fair the Tampa Bay Area. First time attenAuthority. dance is free. There is free parking. For The 2017 theme more information, call Harriet at 727places an emphasis 6567. on all of the unforgettable moments waitRiverview Woman's Club Holiday ing to be captured at Luncheon the Fair. From a selfie with a giraffe to a Join in for the Riverview Woman’s souvenir photo while riding on North Club annual holiday celebration on America’s tallest travelling giant wheel to Wednesday, December 21 from 11:30 a picture in one of the many whimsical a.m.- 1 p.m. at St. Joseph’s Hospital S., “Snap Stops” scattered throughout the Franciscan II Conference Room, 6901 Fairgrounds, the 2017 Fair promises Simmons Loop in Riverview. enough photo ops to fill an album. The Riverview High School Glee The Fair Authority also has confirmed Club will entertain and Santa will arrive that the Country Gold tour once again will to collect the stuffed animals collected to be returning to the Fair in 2017. A fan present to the patients at the hospital. favorite, the 2017 concerts will boast You must RSVP for the luncheon some of the biggest names to join the by 5 p.m. on the Friday before the meet- tour, including Johnny Lee, Bobby Bare, ing, and payment may be made the Gatlin Brothers and Marty Haggard at of the legendary Merle Haggard), as pal. Due to our special lunch menu, well as Leroy Van Dyke of “Auctioneer” there will be no walk-ins accepted at this and “Walk on By” fame. luncheon and free lunch vouchers are Tickets for the 2017 Fair and the not valid at this luncheon. Country Gold Tour go on sale December

1. For more information, visit or follow the Fair on Facebook and Twitter.

Apollo Beach Will Be Featured In Spring Airing of HGTV House Hunters

ficult to avoid in the planned communities of central Florida. This spring, you can follow Rudy and Katie as they explore homes in the Apollo Beach, Tampa and Brandon areas on this sunny episode of House Hunters.

Rudy and Katie recently sold their first home to take advantage of the great equity they had built up and have been stuck in a miserable rental ever since. Katie’s recent promotion means she’ll be working from home, so she’s eager to find a place that will give her a separate, quiet space to work without bothering Rudy, whose work schedule is unpredictable. The couple is looking for plenty of space to accommodate kids on the horizon and their family dog, Murphy. As a transplant from Michigan, Katie wants to embrace Florida living and would love a Craftsman-style home with lots of character, outdoor space and a big front porch. Florida native Rudy would prefer a one-story home, possibly Acadian-style with a grand front entrance that reminds him of his family in New Orleans. Rudy is also interested in a less expensive fixer upper, but, due to Rudy’s busy schedule, Katie wants to purchase a move-in ready home. They agree on two must-haves – a yard for Murphy and a three-car garage where they can work out together. Their agent’s biggest challenge is their wish for no backyard neighbors, which can be dif-

Holiday Traditions – Old & New Educational Seminar

The South Shore Coalition on Mental Health and Aging and NAMI invite you to attend an Educational Seminar: Holiday Traditions – Old and New, on Tuesday, December 20, at 2 p.m. at Sun City Center Chamber of Commerce, 1651 Sun City Center Plaza. All are welcome as old & new holiday traditions are discussed. Music and refreshments will be provided. You are encouraged to bring a holiday memento, ornament or cookies and stories of past holidays. Admission is free. No RSVP is needed.

Upcoming Events At Congregation Beth Shalom

Shabbat services - Welcome the Sabbath at Congregation Beth Shalom on Friday evenings at 7:45 p.m. Oneg (nosh and mingle) follows services and all are welcome. iEngage: Jewish Values and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict - A Hartman Institute Lecture & Study Series will be led by Rabbi Torop on Tuesday, December 15 from 7-8:30 p.m. This session addresses Attitudes Toward the Land - Perspectives from Outside the Land, exploring Diasporic conceptions of the place of land in Judaism and how they shape the way one views the IsraeliPalestinian conflict. Congregation Beth Shalom is located at 706 Bryan Rd. in Brandon. Call 6816547 for more information.


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Page 40

Volume 14, Issue 12

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Commissioner Join in Stacy White at Amalie Elected As Arena, Chairman Tampa from January 25The 29, 2017 a Hillsborough world of County Board of Compiled by Michelle Colesanti, extreme County beauty, flexiCommissioners bility, strength and dexterity today selected Commissioner Stacy R. are explored in ways you’ve White as chairman, and Commissioner never seen before. Sandra L. Murman as vice chairman, durWith such an exciting ing the annual organizational meeting. lineup, The Greatest Show On Commissioner Lesley “Les” Miller, Jr. will 2017 Headline Entertainment Lineup Earth® guarantees to dazzle and serve as chaplain. of the Florida Strawberry Festival astound, and a Ringling Bros.® show The organizational meeting followed Below is the lineup of headline enter- wouldn’t be complete without a full a ceremony in which two returning memtainment acts performing on the Wish menagerie of amazing animals. Circus bers and one newly elected Farms Soundstage at the 2017 Florida XTREME features beautiful Bengal tigers commissioner took oaths of Strawberry Festival, which will take place and two-humped camels ridden by brave office. March 2-12, 2017. Plenty of country, clas- Mongolian women. Re-elected commissic country, Christian, sioners rock, or oldies concerts to Murman, Thursday, March 2 – Jimmy Sturr & His Orchestra | Drifters, Platters & choose from. District 1, and Cornell Gunter’s Coasters | for KING & COUNTRY Tickets go on sale Friday, March 3 – Willie Nelson and Family | Kip Moore Miller, District Thursday, December 8 at Saturday, March 4 – Kane Brown | 3 Doors Down 3, returned to Sunday, March 5 – Clare Bowen/Charles Esten | Little Big Town 8 a.m. and can be purtheir seats. Monday, March 6 – The Bellamy Brothers | Jennifer Nettles chased at www.flstrawberNew to the Tuesday, March 7 – Brenda Lee | NEEDTOBREATHE is Pat Kemp, who Wednesday, March 8 – Tracy Byrd | Scotty McCreery entertainment/, over the won election to serve Thursday, March 9 – Cab Calloway Orchestra | The Oak Ridge Boys| The phone at 754-1996 or in Countywide District 6. Blues Brothers person at the Amscot White was elected to Friday, March 10 – Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers | Elle King Main Ticket Office, 2209 Saturday, March 11 – Maddie & Tae | Patti LaBelle the Board in 2014. From W. Oak Ave. in Plant City. Sunday, March 12 – Joe Nichols| Rascal Flatts ‘RHYTHM & ROOTS’ Tour 2010-14, he served on the

Upcoming Events In Tampa Bay & More…

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® Is Bringing XTREME To Tampa

Prepare to be astonished and amazed by artists who redefine the word extreme in everything they do, magnifying traditional elements of the circus and combining these elements with neverbefore-seen spectacles, original, fastpaced performances and incredibly hilarious moments.

Tickets for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents Circus XTREME are on sale now. Restrictions, exclusions and additional charges may apply. All seats are reserved and tickets are available by calling 800-7453000. For group rates, call 866-248-8740. Purchase tickets and view show times on

Hillsborough County School Board. White is a fifth-generation native of Hillsborough County who lives in Valrico with his wife of 19 years and their three children. After graduating from East Bay High School, he earned a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Florida, and has practiced pharmacy for 19 years.

Summerfield Ladies Club Update for December

The next Bingo for the Summerfield Ladies Club will be held on Thursday, January 26, 2017. The annual Christmas Party will be held at Freedom Plaza in Sun City on Monday, December 12 at 11 a.m. For more info, email

Apollo Beach Woman's Club Thanks The Community

The Apollo Beach Woman’s Club extends thanks to the Apollo Beach community for its support at the club’s recent holiday bake sale which this year raised more than $1,400. All profits benefit the scholarship fund, which supports graduating high school students in Apollo Beach, who have excelled academically and need help meeting tuition costs. Membership in ABWC is open to all women in Apollo Beach and surrounding communities. Dues are $25 a year. The Wednesday, December 14, luncheon will be at Del Webb Southshore Falls, Wellspring Club, 5831 Cascade Falls Lane, catered by Logan of Apollo’s Bistro. Sponsors of the luncheon are THE LIEBERMAN TEAM, Kathy & Steve Lieberman and daughter Sharon, of Re/Max Real Estate and SOUTHSHORE UNCORKED. Entertainment will be by Brian NeSmith’s choral group “Sounds of Time” from East Bay High School. Luncheon reservations ($20) must be made by Friday December 9. Call Sharon Vazquez at 641-7856 or email



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December 2016

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Page 41

With Arts & Entertainment Editor Kathy L. Collins

The Firehouse Pub Offers Great Holiday Entertainment Close To Home

The Sun City Center Photography Club Exhibits Photographs At The SouthShore Regional Library

Spend some Orleans. Their soul quality time this holilifting sound will surely day season enjoying get you up and movgreat music pering. formed by local On Saturday, musicians at the December 17 at 7:30 Firehouse Pub at the p.m. you can hear the Firehouse Cultural unique sounds of T.C. Center in Ruskin. Carr and the Bolts of The lineup for Blue. T.C. Carr has December is wonearned a reputation as derfully diverse and one of the premiere certain to be enjoyed harmonica players in by one and all. the U.S. and Europe. The Firehouse This is an original Cultural Center was American Blues/Roots proud to offer a free band that you will Great jazz artist, Valerie Gillespie and not want to miss. holiday concert in her ensemble recently performed at early December. The The Firehouse Pub at the Firehouse Advance tickets Cultural Center in Ruskin. concert featured for the musical wonderful singers shows are $18 for and musicians from East Bay High members and $23 for non-members. School, Apollo Beach Elementary On the day of the show, tickets are School and Progress Village Middle $23 for members and $28 for nonMagnet School of the Arts. Attendees members. brought a new, unwrapped toy for a Seating at the Firehouse Pub is child in need. communal. You are asked to arrive 30 “There is no better way to start minutes prior to the show. Adult bevthe holidays than be listening to jazz erages and refreshments are availplayed by Valerie with her signature able. saxophone and her ensemble.” The Firehouse Cultural Center is On Saturday, December 10 at located at 101 1st Ave. NE in Ruskin. 7:30 p.m., come see TBone For information, please visit www.fireHamilton’s Big Easy Revue. The band or call 645is dedicated to the sounds of New 7651.

The current show everyday life exhibit in the both here and far away. Some are of Crawford Gallery at the local landmarks, SouthShore while others feature Regional Library monuments and in Ruskin feabuildings from distant lands. There are tures the diverse work of Come down to the SouthShore Regional Library photos of animals, the members of and view the wonderful photographs on exhibit landscapes and in the Crawford Gallery. The photographs are even personal items the Sun City the work of the diverse members of the Sun such as a grandfaCenter City Center Photography Club. ther’s watch. Simply Photography put, there is something for everyone to Club. The exhibit is available for viewing enjoy about this exhibit. Burhop said, through Friday, December 30. The SouthShore Regional Library is located at “The caliber of the work is wide ranging. 15816 Beth Shields Way in Ruskin. There are people who are just beginners According to Laurie Burhop, the Art and some who are professional photograCoordinator for the SouthShore Regional phers. I actually think that helps make the Library, “The Sun City Center show interesting because it appeals to a Photography Club would put up a display wide range of abilities and subject matter.” every year in the Community Gallery for The Sun City Center Photography one month. Their work has always been Club is dedicated to helping members very good, and we would have a very improve their photographic skills and strong response from our patrons about offers programs and support for all levels their work. We usually have one juried of photography. They meet on the second show in the Crawford Gallery, but the John Crawford Art Education Board Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. in decided to invite them to display their the Caper Room at 1203 N. Pebble work in the Crawford Gallery. We are so Beach Blvd. in Sun City Center. happy that we did. The response to the For information about the exhibit, call exhibit and their work has been great.” the library at 272-3652. For information The current exhibit has all different on the Sun City Center Photography types of photographs featured. There are Club, visit or call 634color and black and white. Some simply 3105.

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Armwood, Durant Reaches Playoffs, Local Teams Conclude Fall Football Season

By Tamas Mondovics

Sharks sophomore running back, Cam Lyles takes the handoff from QB Eric Brown for a first down against Palm Harbor University last month. Riverview began strong but came up short ending the season with a 1-5 district record.

The first Friday of November marked the end of the 2016-2017 regular season for most Hillsborough County high school football teams. While Armwood and Plant both continue to lead the region as state title contenders, it is encouraging to see local teams pushing through the season for a chance to appear in the playoffs. As expected, the Hawks, led by head coach, Sean Callahan, advanced to the playoffs after another strong regular season, posting a 9-1, 5-0 record. Another local team that had every reason to be optimistic of post season success was the Durant High School Cougars led by program head coach Natalie Carr Bustillo, DDS, MS Board Certified Pediatric Dentist

Armwood Hawks, running back Erin Collins takes the handoff from QB Devin Black during a regular season game against Bloomingdale. The Hawks advanced to the playoffs with a 9-1, 5-0 record, only falling to Plant in game four.

Mike Gottman, who is in his 13th year coaching the team. Durant dominated the district by ending the Class 7A, District 9 regular season with an 8-2 overall and a 5-1 district record, which includes a seven-game winning streak prior to a disappointing 277 conference game loss to district champion, Tampa Bay Tech. The Cougars concluded the regular season with a 8-3 win against King, a much needed boost ahead of the program’s first away playoff game of the season at East Lake during the region quarterfinals. While understandably disappointed—

Cougars junior quarterback Carlton Potter gets ready to pass the football in the first quarter against the Spoto Spartans. Potter led Durant to a 33-0 win giving the program confidence of a season success.

due to some uncharacteristic mistakes that led the district title slip through the Cougar’s fingers—Gottman was pleased with his team’s effort and overall attitude, which he expressed right from the start. Unfortunately, local teams like Newsome, Bloomingdale, East Bay, Riverview, Lennard, Spoto, and Plant City, will have to wait until next year to share the Cougars success. While the Brandon Eagles finished their conference at 2-3, the Strawberry Crest Chargers winless season means that the program can only have one direction to go when they return next year. The Bloomingdale Bulls (3-3) were led this year by newly hired program



head coach Max Warner, and enjoyed a much better season than the last one. The Newsome Wolves led by Kenneth Hiscock, worked hard, but managed just to break even, ending the season with a 3-3 district record. East Bay posted a 2-4 district record, followed by Lennard and Riverview (1-5) and Spoto 0-4. Plant City had a chance, but ended the season at 4-2. Perhaps the ups and downs of each season is what makes high school athletics exciting, as it promises no assurance of the season’s outcome. For more information about the post football season, visit



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December 2016

Page 43

Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition



Story by Tamas Mondovics

Local Students Compete In The Head Of The Hooch Regatta Completing the final race of the fall season, a team of local students proudly took part in The Head of the Hooch Regatta in Chattanooga, Tennessee last month. Second only to the Head of the Charles in Boston—the largest regatta or boat race in the country—the Hooch draws more Members of the The Stewards Foundation rowing team, Newsome High than 150 teams from School sophomore Drew Bennett and freshman Cristian Lopez are joined around the country to by Bloomingdale High School junior Bryce Fuson and Bloomingdale resitake part in races for dent Cullen Finley, compete in the The Head of the Hooch Regatta. all ages from high school, college and masters programs. Newsome High School sophomore Drew Bennett and freshman Cristian Lopez competed in the event held the weekend of November 5 and 6, and were joined by Bloomingdale High School junior Bryce Fuson and Cullen Finley, a Bloomingdale resident who attends Jesuit High. The four boys proudly row for The Stewards Foundation a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 organization, Drew Bennett and Cristian Lopez pose for a photo at The Head of the Hooch Regatta competition. based at the bypass canal in as a vehicle to teach teamwork and Tampa, which use the sport of Rowing Close

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responsibility to young people. According to race officials, the course is 5,000 meters (3.1 mile) long along the Tennessee River from Chickamauga Dam into the Tennessee River

Gorge at Chattanooga. The more than 2,000 boats taking part in the twoday race are set off at intervals and have to follow a course and are timed while penalties are given for missing buoys. to 9,000 seats are rowed

during the event and 1,200 boats compete on Saturday alone, which is more in just one day than any other regatta. “It is a true test of rowing stamina and skill,” said team mom, Jennifer Bennet, whose son Drew not only enjoys attending the annual event, but said that it’s the most important contest his team trains for all year. “I love going to the Hooch,” Drew said. “It's the big regatta we train for all fall. It's a great weekend away with my team and we get to meet and compete against other rowers from around the country. I really like the competition and the memories I make. I’ll definitely be back next year.” The Hooch was the final race for the team’s fall season, and after a few weeks of rest the boys return to winter training. Those interested in learning to row may contact head coach Mike Smith at or call 786 0337. New crew members are always welcome. For more information, please visit

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Riverview/Apollo Beach Edition

Volume 14, Issue 12

Osprey Observer 2016-12 Riverview/Apollo Beach  
Osprey Observer 2016-12 Riverview/Apollo Beach