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Two Sections, 40 Pages of Community News

Exterior Home Paint Job Giveaway For Single Moms


Painting from the


Enter On Page 17 C E L E B R A T I N G

April 2016 1 5



Volume 13, Issue 4 Ph: 657-2418 P U B L I S H I N G




Painting From The Heart Seeks Single Mom To Receive Exterior Home Makeover

MADD Dedicates Walk To Valrico Deputy Killed By Wrong-Way Drunk Driver

hard to keep up with the exterior of her home. Past Painting from the Heart recipients include, Brandon single mom Sharon Cooley, who adopted a son and two young siblings, The Ellis family of Riverview, whose father, Jason, is a wounded Iraq war veteran with five children and most Nominate a deserving single mom to receive an exterior home recently, Lithia sinmakeover. See entry form on page 17. gle mom Daniella whose Vetencourt Once again this year, Rob Silver, oldest son has special needs. owner of Dynamic Painting USA, and “I am so thrilled with the way the the Osprey Observer have teamed house came out,” said Ramoska, “I together to offer a Mother’s Day don’t have to be embarrassed about Painting From the Heart campaign. The how it looks anymore. Painting From the campaign, intended to give an exterior Heart is the perfect name for your camhome paint job to a single mom in the paign, for your crew were all so wondercommunity, has been a huge success ful and worked so hard.” and Silver plans to continue the effort Silver is also pleased with the partthis upcoming Mother’s Day by once nership with the Osprey Observer and again giving away an exterior home the impact of the campaign and says paint job. that he is able to do it once again this “I am a small business owner,” said year. Silver. “But, if I can give back and make “We believe in giving back to the a huge impact for a local family and a community,” said Silver. “And there is no local mom for Mother’s Day, I am happy better feeling than seeing an entire famito do it.” ly light up with the opportunity to pick a Silver’s commitment to serving othnew house color.” ers began when he was a child, tagging To enter or nominate a single mom, along with his mom as she volunteered email contest@ospreyobserver.com wit in the community. h a letter regarding the family and a One of the past recipients of a free photo of the exterior of the house exterior paint job is Pam Ramoska. by Thursday, April 30 or contact Silver at Ramoska, a single mom with two 689-9333 or visit www.dynamicpaintinteenage boys, lost her husband from a gusa.com. See the form on page 17. tragic heart attack and was finding it

mit to end More than drunk driv800 walkers, ing.” along with By many who could not being dediphysically parcated to ticipate but Deputy gave financial John R. support, took Kotfila Jr., part in the the timing of Tampa’s Ninth Annual Photo Courtesy Martin Hernandez of Fernandez & Hernandez Walk Like Attorneys at Law 2016 Walk The Ninth Annual Walk Like MADD fundraising walk was Like MADD dedicated to fallen Deputy John R. Kotfila Jr., of Valrico. MADD fundraising was also significant as it took place at a walk. The signature, victim-tribute and time when law enforcement, community community awareness event hosted by partners and coalition partners are seekWest Central Florida Affiliate and ing solutions to the plague of wrong-way Hillsborough Advisory Board of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD WCF) was drunk drivers in the community. dedicated to fallen Deputy John R. Kotfila In a recent press release, MADD Jr., of Valrico, whose watch ended on reported that despite a nearly 50 percent Saturday, March 12 when he was killed decline in drunk driving deaths since by a wrong-way drunk driver on the MADD was founded, almost 10,000 peoCrosstown Expressway. ple are killed by drunk drivers and anothAccording to Event Manager Bianca er 290,000 are injured in drunk driving Kendall, the community has responded to crashes every year. this year’s walk more then ever before. Walk Like MADD events are taking “The event has not only met, but place in more than 100 cities across the exceeded its goal of $75,000, which was country this year. Events will take place in the most money it has raised since Pasco and Pinellas counties in the fall. MADD was founded in 1980,” Kendall Visit www.WalkLikeMADD.org/Tampa to said, adding that the walk is held annually register, donate or get more information. to finish the job that was started by a grieving mother 36 years ago. Kendall emphasized that Walk Like In This MADD Tampa raises mission-critical Issue funds to help save lives in Hillsborough County and provides the opportunity to TASTE OF BRANDON..........................PG 5 educate the community about the dangers of impaired driving and underage FEED THE BAY ....................................PG 9 drinking. In addition, local victims and surNEW SEFFNER‐MANGO PARK..........PG 12 vivors come together with law enforcement and other community partners to SPA DAY FOR MOM GIVEAWAY .......PG 14 pay tribute to those lost to and affected by HOA HOT TOPICS............................PG 17 impaired driving crashes. “All funds raised stay in our commuCHALKLINES .....................................PG 28 nity and support MADD’s victim services, ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT................PG 37 underage drinking prevention programs and our campaign to eliminate drunk drivSPORTS CONNECTION...............PGS 38‐39 ing, throughout West Central Florida,” she READ MORE LOCAL NEWS ONLINE said. “Our goal is to bring the community www.ospreyobserver.com together to remember victims and survivors, while we inspire change and com-

By Tamas Mondovics

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

Postal Customer



By Marie Gilmore

Photo by Tamas Mondovics

A competitive skydiver comes into a distance event landing at the 2016 U.S. Parachute Association National Skydiving Championships of Canopy Piloting held earlier this month at Skydive City, one of Florida’s premier skydiving centers in Zephyrhills. The three-day competition saw nearly 60 competitors who tested their abilities in three categories; speed, accuracy and distance. See the full story on page 38 & 39 in this edition.

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Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

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April 2016

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Valrico Edition

End Of An Era For Durant High School Theatre




By Kathy L. Collins The end of the professor, a founder 2015-2016 school year of a traveling acting is bittersweet for Durant group, an award High School’s Theatre winning play writer Department. While they and a technical get to put on the Mel director. Even Brooks’ production Mason’s daughter Young Frankenstein, spent four years in the Musical, they must the program. Mason also say good-bye to said, “I am proud of long time theatre all my students who teacher, Ed Mason. have allowed me to Mason has been be a part of their with Durant High lives. I truly love School since it opened them all and considin 1995. Mason has er them my kids.” had quite a run at Capping his Durant. Under his career with the protenure, they have production of Young duced over 80 shows Frankenstein, the After 21 years as Durant High School’s including Joseph and Theatre teacher, Ed Mason is retiring. Musical, Mason the Amazing Support him and the student actors as wanted to end on a they perform Young Frankenstein, the high note. Based on Technicolor Dream Musical. Coat, Funny Girl, Fools the movie of the and Beauty and the Beast. same name, Young Frankenstein, the Reflecting upon retirement, Mason Musical is filled with all of the madcap said, “I have more memories than I can moments that are present in the movie count. With productions and competitions, version with some catchy music to go my kids have excelled, and they have along with it. taught me as much as I have taught Young Frankenstein, the Musical will them. The legacy I wish to leave behind be performed Thursday, April 21; Friday, is that theatre is an outlet for creativity April 22 and Saturday, April 23 at 7 p.m. with life skills.” Mason added, “I have tried Tickets are $10. Parents please note that to have the kids live by our troupe motto, this play may not be suitable for children ‘I will hold you up, I will not let you fall.’ under the age of 13. We have been there for each other all of You can also support Durant High these years. If I could put it into one senSchool’s Theatre by becoming a sponsor tence, it would be, work hard, have fun or donor as they raise funds to purchase and give the audience 150 percent.” wireless microphones for future producMason has had students go on to be tions. For more information, contact working actors in New York, a college Edward.mason@sdhc.k12.fl.us.

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Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

April 2016

Upcoming Taste Of Brandon Changes Locations, Seeking Vendors

By Renee Hobbs

This year’s Taste of Brandon is a day filled with food, fun and festivities on Saturday, April 30.

Restaurants, caterers and bakeries, oh my. It’s all at this year’s Taste of Brandon on Saturday, April 30. “We are very excited about this year’s event,” said Denise Pare, director of events for the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce (GBCC). The event is in a new location this year, making its home at the Hillsborough County Fairgrounds in Dover. Pare said the spot was changed from last year’s venue to this one because, “We needed more room to expand.” Guests will be able to taste menu samples from 12 Noon-5 p.m. from Brandon area restaurants, and there will be a “Best of” competition where attendees can vote for their favorite tasting. There will also be arts, live music, crafts, retail vendors and “a large children’s play


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Page 5

Valrico Edition

area with free activities,” said Pare. GBCC puts on this annual event and Pare said, “We are trying to create a family friendly event with things to do for all ages. We want everyone to attend so we try to keep the costs low for those coming to the event.” General admission tickets are $15 and include food. Back by popular demand, VIP tickets are on sale for $25, which includes food and a beer and wine tasting from local wine distributors and breweries. Children ages 3-11 are $5 and if they are under the age of 3, they get in free. Pare said GBCC is targeting all different kinds of food vendors, including BarB-Q, Latin cuisine and more. “You name it, we’re interested,” laughed Pare. Local restaurateurs who want to participate still have time to register. The deadline is Friday, April 22. To participate in all the festivities at this year’s Taste of Brandon, visit the event at 215 Sydney Washer Rd. in Dover. Contact Pare at dpare@brandonchambor.com if you are have a restaurant and are interested in participating. For more information about The Taste of Brandon, call the Chamber at 689-1221 or visit brandonchamber.com.

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By Renee Hobbs

The one thing everyLarry Bauer has over 40 one thinks they can fix is years experience as a handytoilets said Bauer but he man and has been operating added, “As simple as it in Hillsborough County since is, it’s not always the 2002. Bauer believes the most case.” important things to consider Fishhawk resident when hiring a handyman are Jeff Winkler said he “honesty, integrity, quality and knows if he can tackle that the person is licensed.” something or not, as he Bauer said he knew he stated, “If I don’t think I wanted to become a handyLarry Bauer has more than man ever since he was a 40 years experience as a can do it I won’t attempt it. I will call in a specialchild, when he would help his handyman. ist.” father around the house and at Bauer said he work. was encouraged Bauer by others to open laughed with his own business almost every senso he did, and he tence and was added, “God happy to talk about taught me everything I anything. “I like to know and now I work for his people.” have fun; I like a He heads the Community Action sense of humor. Personality is a big thing Team as a volunteer at the Crossing in this business” said Bauer. Church in Tampa, which provides conHe continued, “My sense of humor struction services to underprivileged peohelps me help others not to stress about ple in the Tampa Bay area. He also volremodeling or anything else they need unteers in the children’s ministry coordidone.” nating the Safety/Security Team. Bauer went on, “It's all minor to me; Bauer enjoys the outdoors on his anything can be fixed so I don’t want rare days off and said, “My wife and I like anyone to stress out about it.” The Handyman said the craziest thing he has to jump in the camper and go to any of Florida’s state parks.” Camping is a ever pulled out of a drain was, a pair of favorite of Bauer’s, along with hiking and ladies unmentionables. just enjoying life. You can reach Bauer And to add fuel to the fire Bauer recalled, “They didn’t belong to anyone in for emergency services or for more information about Bauer, you can contact him the family.” Bauer said he left quickly, and added at larry@bauerhandyman.com. You can also reach the Handyman as he chuckled, “I didn’t want to get in at 737-5544. the middle of that.”

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Valrico Edition

Spring Job Fair, Sidewalk Sale, Spring Concert & More…

Designer and Name Brands For Sale At Sidewalk Sale

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Compiled by Michelle Colesanti sale will be held

Alafia Republican Club Meeting

On Tuesday, April 26 at 6 p.m. at Beef O’Brady’s, located at 4330 Bell Shoals Rd. in Valrico, the Alafia Republican Club welcomes Jim Norman, Republican candidate for Hillsborough County Commission, District 6, to the club to discuss his candidacy. Stanley Gray, candidate for Hillsborough County School Board, will also be present to discuss his candidacy. As always, food and drinks are available for purchase. Contact Adam.Bantner@BrandonLegal Group.com.

Spring Job Fair Open to the Public

Emergency Care Help Organization (ECHO) of Brandon is hosting a Spring Job Fair that is open to the public. ECHO’s Spring Job Fair will be held Thursday, April 21 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club of Brandon, located at 213 N. Knights Ave. in Brandon. Anyone who is interested in attending may register at echospringjobfair.eventbrite.com. Job candidates will receive free resume critique, a first impression assessment, and computer access. The first 25 candidates to arrive will receive a professional portfolio. The event has over 20 companies already confirmed including Wells Fargo, Bass Pro Shop, Verizon Wireless, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Braille Works, HART and more. There will be a multitude of positions available, including but not limited to, administrative assistant, accountant, plant manufacturing, IT, after school group leader, bus operator, sales, cashier, and bilingual phone operators. Contact sharmaine@echofl.org or 685-0935 ext. 8003.

at Inna’s Alternations & Repair, located in the Bloomingdale Professional Center at 1548 Bloomingdale Ave. E. (west of Bloomingdale High School) in Valrico on Saturday, May 7 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Over 50 pieces of name-brand and designer clothing will be for sale. Come and check out shorts, pants, and dresses, including prom and homecoming dresses. Call 651-4416.

Celebrate Passover At Local Congregation

Join Beit Tehila Congregation as they celebrate the Feast of Passover on Saturday, April 23 at 11 a.m. This year’s theme is The Person Yeshua. Discover the redemptive plan of God through the four Passovers that are found in Scriptures. The family, congregational, personal and kingdom Passovers are a progressive revelation of the Father’s love for His children. Call 654-2222 or email info@topraise.net. Beit Tehila is a congregation that teaches the Hebrew Roots of the Christian Faith and is located at 1705 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. Visit www.topraise.net.

Ways to Improve Your Hearing

This special open-house presentation given by the Hearing Loss Association of America Tampa Chapter will highlight the latest cutting edge treatments, technologies, programs and community initiatives that can help people with hearing loss to significantly improve their hearing. It will be presented at the Brandon Regional Library

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Brandon MS Support Group Meets

The Brandon MS Support Group meets the fourth Monday of each month from 7-9 p.m. at the Bloomingdale Regional Library, located at 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico. Contact 454-7585 or BrandonMSsupportGroup@gmail.com.

Spring Concert Schedule For Eastern Hillsborough Community Band

Audience and band member favorites will be performed by the Eastern Hillsborough Community Band (EHCB) during the band’s 2016 Spring Concert. EHCB is a full-sized concert band that has been entertaining the Tampa Bay area since 2009. The Band Remembers – Selections From Our Past series includes Tijuana Brass, Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Wars. A performance will take place on Thursday, May 5 at 7 p.m., Strawberry Ridge Clubhouse, 3419 S.R. 60 E. in Valrico. A $5 suggested donation will be asked at the door. Reservations are not required. Call 569-1771, email info ehcb.org or visit www.ehcb.org.

Brandon Newcomers Meet Monthly The Brandon Newcomers Club meets the third Wednesday each

Volume 13, Issue 4

month through May at the Brandon Community Center at 502 E. Sadie St. in Brandon. Each month, an interesting program is presented, and after the meeting, those who wish to, go to lunch at a local eatery. Social gatherings held throughout the month include Bunco, Gals Night Out, Out and About, Book Club, Bridge, etc. Dues are $20 yearly, and whether new to the community or a long time resident, all are welcome. Contact 6433281.

What You Should Know About Help For The Needy

A presentation by the National Council on Aging, The Mary Petro Fund and The South Shore Council of the Community Foundation will be held on Thursday, April 21 at 2 p.m. at the Sun City Center Chamber of Commerce at 1651 Sun City Center Blvd. Admission is free and no RSVP is necessary. Contact 784-0235 or Jenny@TenderCareTampa.com or 819-4902.

The Black Box Theatre Presents The Vagina Monologues

HCC Brandon The Black Box Theatre Presents Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues on Wednesday, April 20 through Saturday, April 23 at 8 p.m. A Saturday matinee will also take place at 2 p.m. The cost is $10 for general admission. Students with Hawk Card receive free admission. Tickets can be purchased at the box office door. Call 253-7808. The Black Box Theatre is located at 10414 E. Columbus Dr. in Tampa. Parking is in the north/east lot.

April 2016

Page 7

Valrico Edition

New Products, Great Sales Usher In Dog Gone Holistic 8th Anniversary Celebration

By Michelle Colesanti

The event also provides the opportunity for customers to meet some of the faces behind the products and allows the owners to showcase the exciting new products that Dog Gone Holistic now carries. Some of the participating vendors include Weruva (cat and dog foods), Red Barn (dog chews and treats), Nature’s Logic (dog food) and Nulo (cat and dog foods). There are several new products being introduced like Cat’s Incredible cat litter from Lucy Pet Products. All Darrel Day (left) with his dog Basil and Robert of the Lucy profits go to the Lucy Pet Benscoter (right) with his dog Chaz purchased Foundation for the adoption and care Dog Gone Holistic in February 2015. of pets that would have otherwise Darrel Day and Robert Benscoter been euthanized. Also Fussie Cat dry cat have owned Dog Gone Holistic since foods to complement its line of canned February of 2015. In keeping with its cat foods that are already extremely popannual tradition, this year they will host ular at Dog Gone Holistic, and Benebone the 8th Anniversary Sale, which will take dog chews – long lasting dog chews with place on Saturday, May 7 from 10 a.m.-6 natural flavorings, which have been really p.m. popular with the dogs. Everything in the store will be on sale Day and Benscoter hope the entire all day long. Customers will be able to community will come out and celebrate save 10 percent on all cat and dog foods the store’s anniversary with them. and 15 percent on everything else. While “We’re so happy to be able hold this supplies last, free goodie bags will be event for the eighth time. We think of this given out with a $35 or more purchase. as a customer appreciation day for all of Day said, “It’s hard to believe, but it’s our loyal customers. Thank you for trustbeen over a year since we became ing us as your partner in caring for your involved with Dog Gone Holistic. It’s been pets,” said Day. a dream-come-true for both of us. And, For more information on Dog Gone word of mouth recommendations are Holistic and its Anniversary event, visit bringing in new customers daily. It is so www.doggoneholistic.biz or call 651rewarding to us and our staff when a cus- 0842. tomer comes in and says that we’re makThe anniversary sale will take place ing a difference in their pet’s life and in inside the store, located at 5620 theirs too.” FishHawk Crossing Blvd. in Lithia.

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Page 8

Unity in Brandon Hosts Armand & Angelina

sts Boothe... i t r A g n i Perform Speakers & Mor , r e d e S r e anti, Passov Inspirational e Coles m l l e h & c i s ed by M eyobserver.co Brother Compil r

International Inspirational Speakers and performing artists e @ os p l l e Armand and h c i m Angelina will be offering a morning of music, message and mirth to create a once in a lifetime experience of love, laughter and music. This event Harmonic Booth Brothers To will take place at Unity in Brandon, Appear In Concert located at 129 N. Moon Ave. on The Booth Brothers are known for Sunday, April 24 at 10:30 a.m. their harmony-drenched vocals and Gifted with one of the most angelwarm, easy voices, are coming for an ic and heart-opening voices of our exciting musical time, Angelina is event on Friday, often compared to April 22 at Bell Sarah Brightman. Shoals Baptist Armand’s brilliant Church. talks and composiRonnie Booth, tions, powerful Michael Booth, vocals and engagand Paul ing presence Lancaster make inspire us to love up this award-winlife passionately. ning trio. Come and Their Godhear them speak given talent has and sing inspiring garnered them The Booth Brothers will perform at Bell words and music numerous awards Shoals Baptist Church on Friday, April 22. from their personal including Album of journey of love and the Year, Song of the Year, Trio of the transformation. Refreshments will be Year, Favorite Artist of the Year and served and everyone is welcome. many others. This concert will begin Call 381-6271. at 7 p.m. To acquire additional information regarding this exciting musical Fashion Show And Luncheon event, for tickets visit www.stephenPresented By BCWC rummage.com or call 689-4229, Ext. The Christian Women’s 268. Connection (BCWC), together with Bell Shoals Baptist Church is The Dress Barn, will be presenting a located at 2102 Bell Shoals Rd. in Fashion show “This how we do it...” Brandon. on Monday, May 9 at Bell Shoals


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Valrico Edition


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Baptist Church in the Special Event Center at 2102 Bell Shoals Rd. in Brandon from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. The luncheon, fashion show and entertainment is a nondenominational event and no membership is required. The cost is $15. Make a reservation by Monday, May 2 at 7400098.

Local Girls Crowned In Pageant

In February at the Radisson Resort Celebration in Orlando several young ladies from the Tampa Bay area competed in the Miss Florida Teen Achieve Scholarship Pageant. The following young ladies won top honors and will be representing their schools, community and personal platforms by competing May 26-30 at the national Miss American Teen Achieve Scholarship Pageant in Anaheim, California. At the national level state queens will be judged by a panel of judges in interview, platform presentation, creative expression/talent/speech, athletic wear and evening gown. Congratulations to 15-year-old Angelena Baldi from Armwood High School for being crowned Miss Florida Jr Teen Achieve 2016 and overall talent winner for her vocal performance. Baldi's personal platform is The Importance of Volunteering: Don't just be a number, make it count. Also from Armwood High School is 16-year-old Ashley Johns who proudly presented KEY CLUB as her personal platform. Ashley won Best Overall Interview, Platform Presentation, the Teen Achieve Inspiration Award in addition to being crowned Miss Sunshine State Teen Achieve 2016.

Representing AVID as her personal platform and receiving high marks from judges in Speech and Athletic Wear, 16-year-old Karysia Moran-Adames from Riverview High school took home the Miss Florida Teen Achieve 2016 title. These three incredible young ladies are leaders in their schools and communities. Join in on May 7 at 1 p.m. at Christ Community Church of Brandon for a Ladies Royal Tea & Fundraiser in their honor and to celebrate their accomplishments.

Community Passover Seder: Relive The Passover Exodus

Few Jewish holidays evoke the same warm sentiments as Passover. Memories of family and friends gathered as the four cups of wine are poured, the four questions asked and the Matzah served, all contribute to Passover’s popularity in the Jewish community. Bringing the warmth and tradition of this festival to the Brandon Community, Chabad of Brandon is inviting the Jewish community to participate in a community Seder to be held on Friday, April 22. The seder will take participants through the liberation of the Jewish ancestors from Egyptian bondage, while sharing the relevance and beauty of the age old festival in our modern lives. Included in the seder will be a Handmade Shmurah Matzah from Israel, fine kosher wines and a full gourmet dinner. All Jews are welcome to join the community seder, regardless of Jewish affiliation or background. Reservations can be made at www.jewishbrandon.com /rsvp or by calling 571-8100.

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April 2016

Page 9

Valrico Edition

Feed The Bay Plans To Donate 190,000 Pounds Of Food To Local Charities

By Bonnie Mentel

Manna on Wheels, the church gives us a recommendation and we call them to ask if they want to be a participating food agency,” said Events Coordinator at Bay Life Church, Melanie Langston. Church partners are provided with shopping lists and are assigned to a Publix located near their church. Each site will have a truck ready to collect donations. Publix Feed the Bay will take place Sunday, April 17. provides trucks at five of their locations and Bay Life Church rents When Bay Life Church started Feed trucks for the other locations. All the the Bay in 2006, the event was held in trucks are decorated with Feed the Bay November. They soon discovered that banners to promote the event. this was a very popular time for people to “It’s time to go and be the church to give and that the local food pantries were the community. At Bay Life, we have a already receiving a lot of holiday donachant where we shout ‘Together we can tions. There was no room at the organido more.’ It’s like a big, high energy pep zations for the over 30,000 pounds of rally and then we send our shoppers food that was being brought to them, and out,” Langston said. She expects this by spring all their holiday donations were year’s event to collect about 190,000 gone. Feed the Bay began holding the pounds of non-perishable items. food drive in the spring to help stock up “Publix is amazing. Sometimes they the food pantries. bring certain items to the front of the This year, Feed the Bay will be store so the shoppers don’t need to go Sunday, April 17 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. at through everything. They also open all various Publix locations throughout the their registers from a certain time so peoarea. A list of locations can be found at ple can get through the store,” Langston www.feedthebay.org. Close to 35 churchsaid. es are expected to partner in the food When the shoppers are finished, the drive, which will benefit 16 local food donations are loaded onto the Feed the pantries. Bay trucks in the parking lots. Some vol“The food goes to Feed the Bay’s unteers work as sorters to organize the participating food agencies. When a food as it gets loaded. At 2:30 p.m., the church signs on and they partner to be a trucks make their way to the agencies. Feed the Bay church, they actually recVisit www.feedthebay.org. For further ommend a food agency that they supquestions, contact 661-3696 or port. So whether it’s ECHO, Women’s Resource Center, Metropolitan Ministries, mlangston@baylife.org.




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Page 10

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

Florida Strawberry Festival Association Received Heritage Award

Join Us For Our

8th Anniversary Sale!

By Kathy L. Collins

and through its collection of articles and photographs pertaining to both the festival itself and to the community.” The Florida Strawberry Festival Association was founded in 1930. It has continuously represented and promoted greater Plant City, with the exception of the years during World War II, with its annual festival. The continuous nature of the event, the examples of numerous events and organizations that have (From left) Al Berry, the 2015 award recipient of the Heritage Award; Dan Walden, Festival President, Gil been inspired by the festival, and Gott, Executive Director of the Photo Archives; and the recording of history through Ed Verner, Photo Archives President. its publications and programs are what led the Photo Archives to Since 2004, the Plant City Photo select the Florida Strawberry Festival Archives and History Center (Photo Association for this prestigious award. Archives) has presented the Heritage Gott stated, “The chronicling of our Award. Typically, the award is presented to an individual for efforts in the preserva- history coupled with the preservation of our history by collecting and preserving tion of history and heritage of greater these documents, has been a great servPlant City. This year, the Photo Archives ice for our community. This preservation selected an organization, the Florida of history and heritage is what every comStrawberry Festival Association, to munity needs in order to look back and receive the award. see where we came from and who we At the annual banquet held last month, Gilbert Gott, the executive director are.” Gott added, “You can go anywhere of the Photo Archives explained, “We see in America and find someone that has been to or knows something about the the Florida Strawberry Festival’s signifiFlorida Strawberry Festival, and they cance with regard to the history and herknow something about a little city known itage of the community in three ways. as Plant City and that the city has a histoFirst, it has been and continues to be a part of our history. Secondly, it has been a ry.” The Photo Archives is located at 106 catalyst to many other events that have S. Evers St. in downtown Plant City. For become part of Plant City’s history. more information, call 754-1578 or visit Thirdly, it has recorded the history of the www.plantcityphotoarchives.org. community through its own publications

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Page 11

Valrico Edition

Sheriff’s Office Accepting Applications For Seventh Annual Rising Stars Academy

By Tamas Mondovics

however, may have been a lifelong commitment that the students forge with one another as they share the same commitment, leadership goals, principles and abilities. “I have been fortunate to be involved with the Rising Stars Academy from the beginning,” said School The Sheriff’s Rising Stars Academy students get some Resource Deputy Mike training from the agency’s aviation unit. Alonso, who is now serving The Hillsborough County Sheriffs the community at Newsome High Office School Resource Section is seekSchool. ing local high school juniors advancing to Alonso began his involvement with seniors to participate in the Sheriff’s the program by helping with team buildSeventh Annual Rising Stars Academy ing, but now has the privilege of serving (SRS) scheduled for this summer. as the Lead Instructor for the Academy In 2010, HCSO’s Community curriculum. Outreach Division, in conjunction with After receiving the applications, one members of the HCSO training division, eligible student is selected to represent Tampa Police Department, and the each public high school in Hillsborough Hillsborough County School District, to form the three dozen-member class. developed the leadership program in The upcoming academy is fully fundorder to reward high achieving students ed by the Sheriff’s Office and is schedwith the week long leadership course. uled to be held from Monday through “The mission of the academy is to Friday, June 13-17, at various HCSO provide a leadership program that training facilities that, according to Alonso, enables each student to be exposed to also includes the department’s training principles that will enhance their ability to range as well as the courthouse, port and be a successful and responsible citizen,” the operations center. said Sgt. Sean Peters with the Sheriff’s The course will culminate in an Office School Resource section during awards ceremony for the participants and the sixth SRS graduation ceremony. their families. A scholarship award, Each student graduating from the administered by the Hillsborough academy is rewarded for their efforts, Education Foundation, is provided to stuwhich last year included a $1,000 scholdents who continue to meet eligibility arship and a laptop computer. requirements. Visit www.hcso.tampa.fl.us. Perhaps the most valuable reward,

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Page 12

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

Community In Favor Of Design Plans For Proposed Seffner-Mango Park

By Tamas Mondovics

permitting stages, the project will take place under the direction of project manager Chris Postiglione, with an estimated total cost of $400,000, which will be covered by Hillsborough County Parks Impact Fees. County officials have not yet decided on the construction company, but according Walker, residents will not be impacted by the project. The Seffner-Mango Park is by no means the only park project on the PRC’s current roster. Several acres of County-owned land, which Walker said one of the greater sits adjacent to the Seffner-Mango Library, will Brandon area community’s oldest and become a new landscaped park. most visited parks, Paul Sanders Park Hillsborough County residents had a located at 3319 S. Kings Ave. in Brandon, chance to learn last month during a public is now also on the list for a much-needed information meeting about proposed upgrade. plans to develop vacant County-owned “The Paul Sanders Park will receive land designated for a Seffner-Mango a complete overhaul, which will include a Park. Armed with site maps for viewing, more modern playground, bathroom faciliCounty Parks, Recreation and ties, pavilion shelters as well as improved Conservation (PRC) staff presented infor- parking,” Walker said. mation, answered residents’ questions The time frame for the $315,000 projduring the open-house format meeting ect will be announced later, but Walker and, according to Kara Walker with the said that the park will be shut down County information office, received a throughout the duration of its remodeling favorable response to the plans to develphase. op the parcel, which sits adjacent to the Hillsborough County Parks, Seffner-Mango Library located at 1104 N. Recreation and Conservation Department Kingsway Rd. in Seffner. operates more than 176 neighborhood “Residents are in support of the new parks and playgrounds countywide, 265 park design and proposed components to athletic fields, 13 recreation centers, 10 develop the land into a passive park to regional parks, more than 727 miles of include community gardens, shade sheltrail, as well as 61,000 acres of preserved ters, walking and jogging trails, landscaplands acquired through the Jan K. Platt ing, fencing, and other amenities,” Walker Environmental Lands Acquisition and said. Protection Program. For more, visit the The Park is designed by Engineering Project page at www.HillsboroughCounty. Design Firm, Lauren D. Campo, P.E. org/CountyProjects and click on the Campo Engineering, Inc. Currently in its Community Projects link.

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April 2016

Valrico Edition

SunTrust Invests $1.7 Million In Brand New Junior Achievement Finance Park

By Tamas Mondovics

will make real life financial decisions and learn lessons that we hope will last a lifetime.” According to Richard George, president of Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay, like JA Biztown, the new JA Finance Park will be an interactive market place representative of the local business community, including health care, media, communication, utilities. The difference is that the center gives secondary school students the Photo Courtesy Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay opportunity not to run a company or a Students take on the role of representing the business, but to experience potential various laments of the local financial, and personal financial futures first-hand. business community, organized by the non“Students receive a ‘life situation' profit Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay. with job, income, education, and family Junior Achievement (JA) of Tampa scenarios,” George said, adding that Bay, a non-profit organization which, based on their adult persona, students through its programs, provides young visit businesses in the simulation to gathpeople the knowledge and skills of ecoer information to make financial decisions, nomic literacy, was pleased to receive a such as managing a household budget, sizable donation supporting its goals of using banking services, and making purreaching more students by means of a chasing and investment decisions. brand new JA Finance Park facility. The new park will reach close to The $1.7 million grant gift—the 18,000 students each year. JA programs largest donation in Junior Achievement of are delivered by corporate and communiTampa Bay’s nearly three decades long ty volunteers, and provide relevant, history—was made by the SunTrust hands-on experiences that give students Foundation, to support the construction of from Kindergarten through high school a brand new 18,000 sq. ft. facility, to be knowledge and skills in financial literacy, known as JA Finance Park presented by work readiness and entrepreneurship. SunTrust. Construction of the new facility is Speaking on behalf of the SunTrust expected to begin within a year and in Foundation, Allen Brinkman, president consultation with Hillsborough County it and chief executive officer of SunTrust's will be located in the University Area West Florida Division said, "We are excitCommunity Development at 13707 N ed to partner with Junior Achievement to 22nd St. in Tampa. For more information, bring financial education to life for young visit www.jatampabay.org. people. Through this program students

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Page 13

Page 14

Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

By Tamas Mondovics

Residential Fire Leads To Marijuana Grow House News of a house fire is never considered good, unless it leads local law enforcement officers to a the scene of a much bigger story. Such was the case during a recent call that led Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Patrol District 4 deputies to the scene of a residential fire at 906 Homewood Dr. in Brandon. Upon arrival, the home was partially engulfed in flames and Hillsborough County Fire were on scene working to extinguishing the fire. According to HCSO Public Information officer Larry McKinnon, while there was no one home when firefighter and law enforcement personnel arrived at the scene, the first responders found plenty of unexpected items inside, as they have discovered a marijuana grow house. “While inside the home, firefighters discovered two rooms converted into growing marijuana and multiple marijuana plants in soil filled pots,” McKinnon said. When the smoke cleared, HCSO detectives executed a search warrant and recovered high sodium vapor lights, ballasts, fans and 31 mature marijuana plants inside the residence. Tampa Electric Company (TECO) responded to the scene as well and also discovered an illegal electrical connec-

tion providing un-metered electricity to the residence. The estimated theft of electricity was over $8,745, while the marijuana weighed approximately 270 pounds, which detectives said carries a street value of more than half a million dollars. According to Hillsborough County Fire Investigator Brett Vaughan, the illegal electrical tap was the cause of the fire in this residential neighborhood. While another residential fire is added to the County Fire Rescue’s call list, the bigger issue is the discovery of another grow house within the community that has already seen its fair share of illegal activity. It was only a month ago that Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee announced the results of a lengthy statewide narcotics investigation coined by the department “Operation Hydro Hustlers,” which busted a major drug growing ring. Gee said that the investigation began in March of 2015, netting 22 arrests while it revealed 10 grow houses, eight of which were in Hillsborough County. Investigators said that the Homewood Drive grow house is the 16th marijuana grow operation that has been eradicated in 2016. No arrest has been made pending further investigation.

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DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: FRIDAY, APRIL 29 Name:_____________________________________________________________ Address:____________________________________________________________ Community:_________________________________________________________ Phone:_____________________________________________________________ Email:______________________________________________________________ Enter to win online at www.ospreyobserver.com, fax to 657-4469 or mail to 918 Lithia Pinecrest Rd., Brandon, FL 33511.

Send entries to editor@ospreyobserver.com

April 2016

Valrico Edition

Budget Blinds Opens Location In Riverview By Libby Hopkins

Jim and Elaine Trotter are the owners of Budget Blinds of Brandon, and recently opened a new location in Riverview.

Owning their own business has been always been a dream for Jim and Elaine Trotter of Tampa. The couple met while attending the University of North Carolina and has been married for 31 years. They have called Florida home for more than 14 years. “Jim worked in the corporate world for 20 years and we have lived in many cities, so when another transition was looming, we realized we did not want to leave the Tampa area,” Elaine said. “Owning a small business was always a dream of ours, so we took about a year of due diligence and found Budget Blinds to be a great fit for our goals and lifestyle.” They purchased Budget Blinds of Greater Tampa in October 2008. Locally, Budget Blinds has served over 12,000 customers in the greater Tampa area for over 20 years. “We wanted to invest in the local community by growing a team of dedicated employees who feel the way we do, which is to give great service at a great value, offer continued support and give

back to the community who supports us,” Elaine said. The couple donates locally to Habitat for Humanity, Metropolitan Ministries, the Pediatric Cancer Foundation, Prelude to a Cure for lung cancer research and in 2015 they partnered with Homes For Our Troops. “Budget Blinds Corporate and partners have pledged to give $1 million over three years in products and services to Homes For Our Troops,” Elaine said. “Jim and I also wanted to contribute since several of the Homes For Our Troops have been awarded in our area and a new home has been awarded and will be built in the coming year in Valrico. We started a campaign last year to contribute to Homes For Our Troops $1 for every window covered and we are so pleased to announce our team contributed $13,000 in 2015.” They are continuing the campaign in 2016 and cannot wait to see what they will be donating to the local area. The Trotter’s latest business venture is opening a new Budget Blinds location in Riverview. “We are excited for the new opportunity to service our East Hillsborough customers with a more convenient location to see our shutters, blinds and fabrics,” Elaine said. To learn more, visit www.budgetblinds.com/Brandon or call 445-7121. Budget Blinds is located at 10437 Gibsonton Dr. in Riverview. Showroom hours are Monday through Friday 10 a.m.–5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.–3 p.m.

Page 15

Page 16

Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

By Tamas Mondovics

Year-Long Investigation Ends In Major Drug Bust

Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee as he announces the results of Operation Hydro Hustlers.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO), working with local and statewide law enforcement agencies, announced earlier this month the conclusion and results of a second lengthy investigation targeting individuals and criminal organizations. Joined by Hillsborough County State Attorney and his staff, Sheriff David Gee announced the outcome of a year-long, statewide narcotics investigation, coined by the department “Operation Hydro Hustlers,” which busted a major drug growing ring. Gee said that the investigation began in March of 2015, netting 22 arrests while it revealed 10 grow houses, eight of which were in Hillsborough County. “We began to notice violent trends and crime involving these houses during the past couple of years, including offenses that ranged from murders, home invasions and many other crimes that we are not aware of as they are not

reported to law enforcement,” Gee said. Gee added that the most concerning element of such grow houses is that they are operating in regular neighborhoods as area residents may not even realize that they are potentially in danger. Members of these drug-growing organizations, such as ringleader Julio Alvarez who reportedly moved to the area from Miami, would rent homes and then turn them into a facility supplying them with grow-specific equipment suitable for growing, cultivating and harvesting Marijuana plants. Gee said the average cost to set up a grow house operation can reach $1520,000, which includes the purchase and use of various equipment, such as added air-conditioning, electrical boards, highgrade potting soil, just to name a few, often paid for by fraudulent credit cards. As the investigation was nearing its conclusion, HCSO deputies began to serve search warrants which resulted in the seizing of 591 marijuana plants weighing 872 pounds. Also seized were 46.67 pounds of processed or packaged marijuana with a value of $2.3 million. State attorney Mark Ober added that Operation Hydro Hustlers broke up a well defined criminal organization. “The maximum penalty on some of these particular cases is 30 years,” Ober said. “As we go through this process, we will see if any of these individuals qualify for enhanced penalties.” Visit www.hcso.tampa.fl.us.

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April 2016

Page 17

Valrico Edition

Brandon Regional Hospital Begins $60M Emergency Room Expansion Project By Nicole Heubusch

How To Host A Community Garage Sale Do you need to get rid of items you don’t need? Maybe your neighbors need to do so as well. Hosting a community garage sale will not only help you make a lot of money, but it can be a great way to bring your HOA community together in the process. Step 1: The first step to take when hosting a community garage sale is to choose a date. You’ll need to find a date that works for almost everyone, and is far enough in advance that you can promote the sale. Step 2: Promote, promote, promote! Make up some flyers about a month ahead of your sale date to pass around to neighboring communities. Include the addresses of participating houses on the flyers. Step 3: Get everything organized. Encourage other participants to prepare the items they want to sell. Go through closets and drawers and pull things out, marking them with prices as you go, so you don’t have to price everything all at once. Step 4: Send out reminders to residents that the community sale is coming up. Do this about a week before the sale. Step 5: Get a few residents together

to paint garage sale sales. Advertising your community garage sale is very important. Get a good few pieces of cardboard, and paint your message in a bright color that stands out. Step 6: Speaking of advertising, it’s very important to get the word out, so advertise in your local newspaper. Did you know that if you send the information about your community garage sale to the Osprey Observer, a month ahead of the sale, we will post all of the information in our HOA section? Email nicoleh@ospreyobserver.com to get HOA news in the paper. Step 7: When advertising, make sure to include general street intersections, as well as the name of the community. Step 8: Make sure residents prepare and arrange everything in their garages the night before. If they need to set up on a driveway or yard, remind them to have everything near the door so they can run it all out and set it up quickly in the morning. Step 9: Remove your sign after the sale for several reasons. One: so people don't come back the next week looking for the yard sale. Two: most city ordinances require signs be removed.

By Kathy L. Collins

atric emergency room entrance. When completed, 45,000 sq. ft. will have been added. Brandon Regional Hospital is the fifth busiest ER in the state of Florida. The hospital serves approxiCommunity leaders and hospital dignitaries gathered last month mately 120,000 to cut the ribbon on Brandon Regional Hospital’s newly expanded patients each year. emergency room. To keep up with Recently the community gathered for patient demands and needs, the hospital a ribbon cutting ceremony at Brandon allocated 60 million dollars to a multiRegional Hospital’s new Emergency phase expansion. Room (ER). Attendees were offered tours Brandon Regional Hospital CEO, of the newly expanded facility. Bland Eng said, “This is a bold step for Phase one of the three phase $60 the hospital to take for the residents of million expansion will open in April. The Brandon. What a gem of a community first phase adds 22,000 sq. ft., 40 new Brandon is. This expansion is the transexam rooms including an area for pediformation from the past to the future. We atrics and a new main entrance for easier are stepping into the future. A hospital’s access. The new ER entrance is off of ER is the front door of the hospital. Now Oakfield Drive. The newly completed the surroundings and physical environphase also includes state-of-the-art traument of the hospital will be a mirror image ma rooms, private patient rooms where of the care given by exceptional healthnurses can chart on computers in the care workers at Brandon Regional room, two new X-Ray machines, two Hospital.” additional 64-slice CT machines and Brandon Regional Hospital has been upgraded ultrasound equipment. providing emergency care to families of Phase two, which will open in the greater Brandon area since 1977. It January 2017, will have eight new exam should be noted that during the construcrooms, four new trauma rooms, centrally tion of the massive expansion, the hospilocated imaging and a new ambulance tal stayed open and there was no reducentrance with helipad. tion in services or capabilities. Phase three, which will open in May Brandon Regional Hospital is located 2017, will include a dedicated 16 room at 119 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon. Visit pediatric department and dedicated pediwww.Brandonregionalhospital.com.

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Page 18

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

Free Admission To Tampa Bay History Center, Coffee & Art Festival & More…

Compiled by Michelle Colesanti

History Center Marks MacDill Anniversary With Free Admission

Celebrate the 75th anniversary of MacDill Air Force Base with free admission to the Tampa Bay History Center during MacDill Day on Sunday April 17, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Presented by the New York Yankees Tampa Foundation, both military families and the general public will receive free admission to the History Center. Guests will learn about the history of MacDill through WWII-era reenactors and displays of MacDill artifacts. A new exhibit located in the History Center’s War Stories Gallery, History Takes Flight: The Story of MacDill Air Force Base Through Its Iconic Aircraft, features 17 scale models of the most important aircraft in the base’s 70plus year history, from the iconic B-17 bomber to the sleek F-16 fighter jet to the workhorse KC-135 “Stratotanker.” Guests will also receive free Tampa Yankees give-aways and meet Blue, the Tampa Yankees’ mascot. Visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call 228-0097.

Tampa Bay Coffee & Art Festival

On Saturday, April 23 from 6-9 p.m., DCNoise will be hosting the first ever Tampa Bay Coffee & Art Festival (TB-CAF). This exciting new event will be showcasing Tampa-based coffee roasting company, Zeal Coffee Roasters, along with plenty of local

artists. The festival will take place at The Noise Box, 1310 John Moore Rd. in Brandon. TBCAF will feature coffee tastings, raffle prizes, brewing method demonstrations, and many local artists in the community that will be sure to educate you about coffee and enrich your mind with the arts. This event will have something for everyone from the coffee novice to the most enlightened brew guru. All tickets will be available by preorder only, so mark your planner, grab a date, and head over to DCNoise.com/events to buy your tickets. Visit DCNoise.com

Trike-A-Thon Benefits St. Jude

Kids ‘R’ Kids Fl#8 of Valrico participated in the St. Jude Trike-A-Thon last month. St. Jude Trike –A-Thon is a week-long fundraising program that teaches kids riding-toy safety. As they learn the rules of the road, students can gather donations to support the work of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Along with the Trike-A-Thon, Kids ‘R’ Kids of Valrico held a silent auction, coordinated by our curriculum coordinator, Katina Fussell, to help raise money

Kids ‘R’ Kids Fl#8 recently raised $1,155 for St. Jude.

for childhood cancer research. Thank you to all of the families who helped raise $1,155.

Robotics And Engineering Camps For Middle And High School Students

FLATE, the Florida Advanced Technological Education Center, a Tampa-based National Science Foundation Center of Excellence is hosting several robotics and engineering camps this summer for middle and high school students across Tampa Bay. Students can choose from various options to whet their appetite for Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM), with a special “Girls Only” camp to kick off the season. All camps will be held at Hillsborough Community College in

Brandon. Cost for the intro and intermediate camp is $175 per week; cost for the high school engineering and technology camp is $200 a week. This year’s (Monday to Friday) schedule and list of camp offerings include: June 20-24: Girls Only Introductory EV3 Robotics Camp for Middle School June 27-July 1: Introductory EV3 Robotics Camp for ALL Middle School students July 11-15: Intermediate EV3 Robotics Camp for ALL Middle School students July 25-29: Engineering Technology Camp for High School Students Visit www.flate.org/projects/camps.html and www.madeinflorida.org. Contact barger@fl-ate.org.

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April 2016

Page 19

Valrico Edition

The Bridges Chorus Provides Music, Memories And Merriment

By Janet Noah

are experiencing joy as they sing. Resident Pete Zylman has been singing in choruses since he was 18-years-old. He enjoys it as it is a worthwhile activity that keeps him busy and stimulates his mind. Resident Lucille Pianese said that singing is a way of expressing feelings. “The songs we sing bring back memories and the music revives me,” she said. According to a study conducted at McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Residents at The Bridges Assisted Living community and published in Trends in enjoy the opportunity to sing throughout the month durCognitive Science, April 2013, ing their scheduled activity program times. evidence found that the beneSinging provides many benefits for fits of singing “significantly improved psythe elderly. Ongoing research has shown chological health and well-being through that regular singing can lift your spirits, the engagement of neurochemical sysincrease your immunity and provide a tems responsible for reward, motivation, workout for your brain and your lungs. pleasure, stress/arousal, immunity and These benefits are significant for those social affiliation.” experiencing mild to moderate dementia. Philosopher and psychologist William The Bridges Assisted Living commuJames understood the benefits of singing nity offers residents the opportunity to when he said, “I don’t sing because I’m sing numerous times a month as part of happy, I’m happy because I sing.” their scheduled Activity Program. As a lifelong singer, resident Mary Residents partake in karaoke, sing-aGrimshaw loves the newly formed cholongs, church services, and, most recentrus. ly, The Bridges Choir. Under the direction “I can feel my mood being lifted and I of Wellness Coordinator Gary Lenza, res- feel good when I sing. It brings back good idents join voices and sing music from memories of the years when I sang in their era. The Bridges Choir has experihigh school and college,” she said. enced steady growth with more residents For more information on The Bridges joining each month. From the smiles on Assisted Living Community, call 413-8900 their faces, it is apparent that the singers or visit bridgesretirement.com.



with purchase of $20 or more

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Page 20

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

that can cause water pollution and the affect of water quality on aquatic life. Attendees can Compiled by Michelle Colesanti enter a coloring contest, enjoy Bihler’s creative displays with informationCommissioner Stacy White Hosts al posters, and information of different Community Office Hours organizations that offer environmental Hillsborough County Commissioner programs like STORM DRAIN MARKStacy R. White, District 4, will host comING. munity office hours on Friday, April 29 Girl Scouts at this level are working from 10 a.m.-12 Noon at the toward achieving their Silver Award. Girls Bloomingdale Regional Public Library, build leadership skills, decision making, located at 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in and partnering with others to achieve a Valrico, to hear from residents without common goal. The girls accomplish this them having to travel to County Center in through a three-step process; Discover, downtown Tampa. Commissioner White Connect, and Take Action. They identify a and his staff welcome this opportunity to problem in their community, partner with meet residents and to discuss their others who believe in their cause and thoughts and concerns on various projmake a change by educating others to ects and community issues taking place support a change in order to improve or in Hillsborough County. No appointment resolve the issue. is necessary to meet with The EcoFest event will Commissioner White and be taking place Saturday, his staff. Residents are April 23 from 10 a.m.–3 seen on a first-come, firstp.m. at the Lowry Park served basis. Bandshell, 7530 North Boulevard. The event is free Local Girl Scout Partners of charge. All are encourWith EcoFest aged to come out and Miranda Bihler, Cadette attend this event and drop Girl Scout of Troop 490, is by her booth located near an eighth grader who has the playground at Lowry taken the initiative to focus park across the street from on a growing problem in Lowry Park Zoo. For more everyone’s community, information, call 843-3245. non–point source pollution Girl Scout Miranda Bihler is partnering with EcoFest to through the storm drain raise awareness of non-point Hillsborough County system. She has partsource pollution through the Women & Money nered with the 7th Annual storm drain system. Program EcoFest Event, in order to An educational proraise awareness and the role we all play gram designed to explore issues unique in our ecosystem. to women and help them achieve their The objective is to educate the public personal financial goals will be hosted by through the use of hands on activities for the Hillsborough County Extension Office an understanding of the various factors

Visit Stacy White In Bloomingdale, Women And Money Program & More…

in April. The two-day program runs from 6:157:45 p.m. at the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, 1002 E. Palm Ave. in Tampa on the following days: Monday, April 25 and Wednesday, April 27. Topics will include evaluating money decisions, goal setting, cash flow management, and saving and Florida leads the nation with over 10,000 Guardian ad Litem volinvesting. Seating is unteers advocating for abused, neglected and abandoned children in court. limited. The total cost is $10, and spouses total volunteers at the end of February and partners are welcome to attend at no 2016 reveals that 10,056 Florida GAL citiadditional registration fee. No-shows and zen volunteers are trained and certified to late cancellations will not receive a regiswork with children who are removed from tration refund. Register their parents due to safety concerns. at bit.ly/1pJTFdx by Monday, April 18. Most volunteers represent two or more Refreshments will be provided. abused children, visiting them at least Persons with disabilities requiring once a month, and advising child welfare special accommodations may conjudges on options for assuring the child’s tact 744-5519 at least five business days best interests. prior to the program so proper consideraAbramowitz explained that anyone tion may be given to your request. age 18 or older can become a volunteer, simply by participating in a local training Florida Leads Nation With Over course and meeting other qualifications. 10,000 Guardian Ad Litem Volunteers “A typical volunteer is as unique and Florida Guardian ad Litem (GAL) diverse as our state’s population. We Executive Director, Alan Abramowitz, have doctors, students, special education revealed that Floria’s GAL Program has teachers, Home Depot supervisors, stayexceeded its goal of 10,000 volunteers at-home moms, restaurant cooks, FBI who advocate for abused, neglected and agents, UPS delivery drivers…ages 21, abandoned children in courts throughout 68, 32, 76, 44, 28, 57, 24, male, the state. Abramowitz made the female….anyone,” he said. announcement in recapping the agency’s Even with GAL’s successes to date, success during the recently adjourned there are thousands of children who still Florida Legislative Session. Although need a voice. To learn more about the most states have a GAL Program of Guardian ad Litem Program or to become some kind, Florida’s success in recruiting a volunteer, visit volunteers sets the record for the nation. www.GuardianadLitem.org or call 1-866Abramowitz reported that a count of 341-1GAL.


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Page 21

Valrico Edition

Independent Feature Film Proof To Begin Production Locally, Seeks Shooting Locations

By Carl Walins

Independent feature pants are traveling from film Proof is set to begin other parts of the state production in Riverview and at their own expense to surrounding areas. IMRSIV be part of this project. Media, in association with The film's director, Carl The Independent Walins, is gratified by Filmmakers of Gulf Coast the outpouring of supand Central Florida, is curport. rently in pre-production. “It is simply amazRiverview was selected ing how many people as the site for the movie's want to be a part of this base of operations as movie,” Walins said. Actor Michael C. “We've literally had to it is the home of the McGreevy of film's writer, Steven turn people away Tampa's Jobsite Slawin. The project's because we don't have Theater portrays the mayor of the enough roles or enough final pre-production fictional town of jobs to go around.” meeting will be held for Palm Breeze, the full cast and crew The movie's proFlorida in the locally-produced ducers are hoping for on Sunday, April 24 feature film and principle photogracommunity support for Proof. phy begins in May. the project in the form of The film stars shooting locations and extras. Patrick Weston and Monika Eldred as “We're still looking for a few places to Tim and Janey-Anne Butler, a couple shoot: a rural church for a town hall meetwhose relationship is affected dramaticaling scene, a wooded area for the UFO ly when Tim and his best friend, Eugene landing site, and other locations, like a Berry (Tujuane Doughty in his first signifilocal diner, motel, and some office and/or cant role) witness a UFO event. Things warehouse space,” Walins said. take an unexpected turn when author and “Eventually we're going to need extras for self-proclaimed paranormal expert several scenes. We're hoping that owners Stanton Kole III (veteran actor Peter J. of suitable locations in the area will conKonowicz) arrives to assist in validating tact us and offer their sites for use in our the encounter. Attempting to keep order little film.” throughout is Sheriff John Paine, played Property owners, residents of the by Richard A. Ramsey. Nearby locations area and others who provide locations, will stand-in for the fictional town of Palm people or services to the production will Breeze, Florida. receive an official thank you in the film's The film has a primary cast and crew credits. Details can be found at of roughly 30 who are donating their time, www.imdb.com/title/tt5531336/ or faceexpertise, and experience. Some particibook.com/imrsiv.

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Page 22

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

Love’s Tire And Service Center Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Your FishHawk Community Physician for Health & Beauty




Mother’s Day ... Let Us Pamper Her! With purchase of every $100 Gift Certificate Receive a $20 Gift Certificate and FREE Gift Bag with ZO Products ($75 value)

Owners Scott Love and Gay Lynn Love from Love’s Tire and Service Center are celebrating 20 years in business.

Owners Scott Love and his wife Gay Lynn Love from Love’s Tire and Service Center in Valrico are celebrating their 20th anniversary. Love’s Tire and Service Center is family-owned and operated, and the owners are local. “By the grace of God, putting people first and our employees is what helped our business reach its 20th anniversary,” said Gay Lynn. Love’s Tire and Service Center has been in operation since April 1, 1996. Its location was chosen because of the good opportunity. Major, minor and full service repairs are just a few examples of the various types of services that are provided to its customers. Goodyear products are sold at Love’s Tire and Service Center, which is supported by the Goodyear company. A special sale event will be conducted on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23, in honor of being in business for 20 years. Gay Lynn mentioned there will be all kinds of sales going on. It is a free

event to the public. The event will include a cookout, beverages, a car show, door prizes and a service sale. The cookout is going to be held during both days. Food will be served from 11 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. The car show is on Saturday from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. “Once a year for our anniversary, we have a big cookout. My husband makes a huge pot of collard greens and it has become quite a tradition with the customers, since they come back every year for them,” said Gay Lynn. Hold tight to your dream and do not give up, is advice that Gay Lynn Love shared. For more information, visit lovesautorepair.com. It is located at 1701 Hwy. 60 E. in Valrico. Hours of operation are Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m.- 6 p.m. and Saturday 8 a.m.- 1 p.m. Call 661-3955.

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April 2016

Learn Music In Your Home With Local Traveling Instructor

By Andria Barrios

Chloe Caputo (above) is one of the many in her family taught by mobile music instructor Daniel Swartwood (right).

Daniel Swartwood, a local music instructor, offers private piano and keyboard lessons within the comfort of the homes of his students. As a teacher at various music schools for the past 25 years, this musician has a Master’s in composition and a Bachelor’s in performance. Swartwood, who’s also principle pianist and keyboardist at the First Baptist Church of Riverview, began playing the piano as a toddler and has played in churches since his preteen years. “I teach all levels; beginner, intermediate and advanced,” he explained. He also teaches many homeschool students. Swartwood teaches more than just traditional piano. He also instructs in electronic keyboard, as well as composition

Page 23

Valrico Edition

and songwriting of many genres from movie soundtracks to praise and worship. He’s willing to teach all over Brandon, Valrico, Plant City, Riverview and FishHawk, and has competitive pricing, but the main thing Swartwood prides himself on is his diverse background, as he has played in every state barring Alaska and Hawaii. “I have a real world base that I can draw on every day, from my experience with Broadway and classical to pop and praise and worship bands,” said Swartwood. This instructor is also diverse in what he offers students. “If they like classical music, we focus on that, if they’d rather jazz or religious, we’ll do that. I teach the basics but I also use the student as a guide,” said Swartwood, who has been background checked to work with children. “Daniel has a very strong knowledge of music theory and uses current, innovative piano techniques in his teaching,” said student Carole Fluhart. Mother of a student, Kerrie Hoening said, “With such a hectic schedule, it’s helpful and convenient to have lessons at my home, rather than us squeezing in drive time.” “Sharing music is a great privilege and I’ve known from a young age that I wanted to teach,” Swartward, who is currently open to new students, said. To find out more or to schedule a lesson, call 841-4752 or visit www.mobilemusicinstructors.com or bit.ly/25nnHDX.

ASK THE EXPERT! LAURIE E. OHALL Board Certified Elder Law Attorney 813-438-8503 Laurie Ohall is a Florida Board Certified Elder Law Attorney who has been practicing law since 1994.In addition to elder law; her areas of practice include estate planning, asset protection planning, probate, guardianship and trust administration. Ms.Ohall is a member of the Florida Bar, Brandon Bar Association, National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the Academy of Florida Elder Law attorneys. Ms. Ohall is also licensed to practice law in Ohio and is “of counsel” with the law firm of Browning, Meyer and Ball in Columbus, OH. New Location: 1464 Oakfield Drive, Brandon, FL 33511

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Page 24

Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

April 2016


Volume 13, Issue 4

Ph: 657-2418

InThis Section

RIBBON CUTTINGS & MORE...............PG 27 CHALKLINES........................................PG 28 SUMMER CAMP SECTION............PGS 30‐35 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT...................PG 37 SPORTS CONNECTION..................PGS 38‐39 Brandon, FishHawk, Valrico and Riverview areas. These events are designed to help professionals develop More than 21 years ago, a small their skill set and become more involved group of Publix associates in Gainesville with other like-minded entrepreneurs in signed up to walk and raise funds for the the area. As the IGS community continMarch of Dimes to help make a differues to grow, it will evolve into a shared ence and improve the health of babies. co-working space that will serve as a Today, that team has grown into a comtrendy, comfortable and inspiring workpanywide campaign with more than space and meeting area. Upcoming 179,000 associates in 1,111 stores, and events include How to Create and Use with the support of their customers, Facebook Ads, Thursday, April 21 from Publix has raised more than $57 million 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.; and Personal to help give every baby a fighting Branding, April 21–May 24 from 11:30 chance. a.m.-1:30 p.m. Visit www.igscommuniThe grocery giant will ask customers Salon Essence, located in Plaza Bella on Bloomingdale Ave., recently hosted its ribbon cutting ty.com. with the Valrico/FishHawk Chamber of Commerce. The full service salon offers hair styling, to join them in their annual fundraising cuts, color, manicures, pedicures, waxing and more. Visit salonessencespa.com or call 681drive running through Saturday, April 30. 2060 for an appointment. Mathnasium Welcomes New Assistant At checkout, associates will sell cutouts Center Directors at 3619 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in Valrico. It cutting will take place at 5:30 p.m. and on which customers can write their name has over nine local employees and is the shredding truck will be there throughMathnasium has promoted one of its or the name of a baby they love. The regopen six days a week. Call 655-4432 or out the event. Enjoy networking, appetizown, Lead Instructor Baylor Kull, to ister campaign coincides with March for visit www.shaunessydecor.com. ers and beverages. RSVP for shredding Assistant Center Director and hired Babies, the March of Dimes signature is requested but not required. Contact KaLynn Singleton to take the place of event, which occurs on Saturday, April 843-7027 or Preservation 1st Financial Group To Michelle Holton who has been graciously 30 in most areas. To find a March for Michael.beitersr@jwcemail.com. Host Ribbon Cutting At New Location as assistant center director since serving Babies event near you, visit marchforbaPreservation 1st is located at 912 Lithia October 2014. Holton was presented with Tuesday, April On bies.org, where Pinecrest Rd. in Brandon. an opportunity 19 from 4:30-6:30 you can sign up to return full p.m., come celebrate and raise addiIntentional time to the with Mike and tional funds to Growth career that Beiter from Christian support the Strategies she left years Preservation 1st March of Dimes. Offers Classes ago to home Financial Group, LLC for educate her as they host a double One Year Professionals children. She has returned to the ribbon cutting event Anniversary Department of Environmental Protection with both the Greater Growth Strategies is in the Intentional Celebrated in to work in water quality environmental Riverview and Valrico/FishHawk business of transforming the way profesApril at Shaunessy’s Décor and More compliance and permitting. Both Kull and sionals work by creating a community Shaunessy's Decor and More is cele- Chambers of Commerce. Its third annual Singleton will be job sharing this position Networking & Paper Shredding event will that hosts professional development brating its one year anniversary in April. take place at the same time. The ribbon events throughout each month in the Shaunessy's Decor and More is located Continued on Next Page

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Page 26

Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

Business Column Continued............. so parents and students will see them both most every day. Baylor has been with Mathnasium since before the doors opened in October 2013. He has been promoted numerous times and now has decided to take on this newest position. Kull graduated from Bloomingdale High School in 2012 with honors and is now attending USF pursuing his degree in Mathematics. Singleton is excited to be joining the Mathnasium team. Her mathematical background consists of elementary math through calculus. She has home schooled her own children for over 18 years, taught middle and high school math and has acquired extensive tutoring experience. Visit www.mathnasium.com/brandon.

Tampa YMCAs Hosting Activities On Annual Healthy Kids Day

On Saturday, April 30, nine Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA branches are holding free community events to inspire more kids to keep their minds and bodies active. This year marks the 25th annual YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, the Y’s national initiative to improve health and wellbeing for kids and families. The free events feature activities such as active games, healthy snacks and crafts to motivate and teach families how to develop healthy routines at home. YMCA’s Healthy Kids Day, celebrated at over 1,300 Ys across the country by over 1.2 million participants, works to get more kids moving and learning, creating habits they continue all summer long, which is a critical time for kids’ health. Locally Healthy Kids Day will take place at Campo Family YMCA, 3414 Culbreath Rd. in Valrico from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (684-1371) and North Brandon Family YMCA, 3097 S. Kingsway Rd. in Seffner from 12-4 p.m. (685-5402).

By Sandra Meyer Gentle Yoga At A Simpler Place Farm & Market

This evening class is designed to get you outdoors breathing fresh air. Yoga is a series of basic movements and stretches to help release tension, build strength and create balance. The class is for beginners and is taught by Jenna Clay from Lucky Cat Yoga. No experience necessary. Sessions are held on Thursdays from 6:30-7:30 p.m. through April 21 and cost is $5 per class. Sign up using Eventbrite or pay at the event. Classes are held at A Simpler Place Farm & Market at 1022 Carr Rd. in Riverview.

New Neighborhood Pet Store Marks Territory In Valrico

Valrico pet parents recently lined up to celebrate the grand opening of Pet Supplies Plus, located at 1937 E. SR 60 in Valrico Commons. It will offer area residents an easy to shop environment offering a broad range of food from premium items to basic grocery products and a wide variety of pet toys, equipment, fish and critters. Additionally, the new neighborhood pet store will carry an extensive variety of Made in the USA pet consumables such as wet and dry food, treats, rawhide, chews and more, all at great prices and with a price-match guarantee. The 6,547-sq. ft. store will also feature a self-service dog wash and a carryout service to help neighbors carry heavy purchases. Pet Supplies Plus maintains a professional, experienced and knowledgeable local team. Its extensive training ensures that all team members are able to answer a broad range of questions about household pets from dogs and cats to exotic birds, reptiles and fish, and are experts in natural and holistic foods. Shoppers can also take advantage of the free Preferred Pet Club, offering members the benefit of regular coupons and monthly specials. Call 540-0645 or visit www.petsuppliesplus.com.

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ers wines, beers, mixers, even “top shelf” liquors and liqueurs. There is also a Homage Wine Club with three selective packages to choose from: Red/Red, Red/White, and White/White, with in-store discounts. Members also receive email invitations to events as well as the wine tastings. This month’s tasting will be Thursday, April 21 from 5-8 p.m. at the store. Many visitors will also be impressed with the almost intimidating variety of vodkas to choose from, possibly the largest variety in this part of Florida. Call 756-4231 or 359-1976.

Homage Liquor Free Wine Tastings

Brandon Regional Hospital Seniors’ Fitness Classes

Green Door Salon Studios provides stylists with fully equipped and furnished private salon studios. This concept is revolutionizing the industry by offering stylists the professional freedom of operating their own business. Each guest will have the opportunity to have a fabulous one on one experience with their stylist in a high end vintage inspired salon and space. Green Door Salon is located at 1147 Professional Park Dr. (off of Lumsden) in Brandon. Visit greendoorsalons.com or call 941-518-5951.

Newly opened Homage Liquor Experience, located at 4350 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. (on the west side of the road across from The Landing and The Brunchery), has begun hosting wine tastings on the third Thursday of each month from 5-8 p.m. Homage also offers free delivery (within an eight mile radius) on all orders $49.99 or more, and a 10 percent discount on everything to military, both active duty and retired. The discount cov-

Brandon Regional Hospital announces that its H2U is sponsoring a seniors’ fitness class every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:30-10:30 a.m. in the Oakfield Medical Plaza, Ste. 226, on the campus of Brandon Regional Hospital at 119 Oakfield Dr. in Brandon. Call 6531065 or visit BrandonRegionalHospital.com.

April 2016

Valrico Edition

Page 27

Page 28

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

Story by Tamas Mondovics

Excellence In Education Winners Announced & Students Participate in Engineering Technology Tours

Three educators were recently honored during the Excellence in Education Awards.

District Announces Excellence in Education Winners

Three outstanding educators and support staff were recently honored as this year’s winners of the Excellence in Education Awards. The winners were chosen out of 699 total nominees, which was funneled down to 14 finalists (four finalists for Ida S. Baker, three finalists for Instructional Support, and seven finalists for Teacher of the Year). The Hillsborough Education Foundation, along with Hillsborough County Public Schools, presented the awards last month at the David A. Straz Center for the Performing Arts. The 2016 Ida S. Baker Diversity Educator of the Year award went to Young Middle Magnet School Guidance Counselor, Angela McKinnon. As an English education major and graduate of the University of South Florida, McKinnon has been with the Hillsborough County

School District for 17 years. After 10 years as a high school English teacher, she transitioned into the world of guidance and counseling, impacting the lives of countless students by working with community partners The Girl Scouts of West Central Florida, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and Tampa Alumnae Chapter. McKinnon has created various counseling programs: Chit Chat City, Cocoa Book Club and Chit Chat Crochet, all sponsored through Donors Choose grants and community donations. Also awarded was Just Elementary School Resource Deputy Wayne Moore, who has earned the 2016 Instructional Support Employee of the Year. Moore is a 17-year U.S. Army veteran and current Navy Reservist and has been in the district since 2001. According to district officials, Moore’s goal is to uplift students to their fullest potential. The 2016 Teacher of the Year award

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went to Plant High School Exceptional Student Education (ESE) Teacher Mary Beth Radigan. Radigan received her Bachelor’s from Ohio University majoring in special education and has been teaching for 29 years, nine of which in Hillsborough County. Pawbucks Coffee Shop, Paw Prints Cheerleading, Organic and Hydroponic Gardening and Unified Special Olympics are all programs Radigan has helped introduce to Plant High School. Vsit www.sdhc.k12.fl.us.

Science Foundation Center of Excellence at HCC-Brandon, to give students a 360 degree perspective of educational and career pathways in manufacturing. “All tours showcased applications/integration of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, or STEM-based concepts, in everyday high-tech manufacturing operations,” said FLATE Spokesperson Janice Mukhia. “During the ETE tours, students engage in activities that will give them a hands-on understanding about STEM and high-tech manufacturing operHillsborough County Students ations.” Participate in Engineering As part of the process, Mukhia added that students get a chance to see equipTechnology Experience Tours ment demonstrations of the robotic arm, During a series of tours, nearly 100 3-D printing operations, NAO humanoid students from the School District of Hillsborough County had a chance to visit robots, and engage in discussions about manufacturing careers, educational paththe engineering technology lab at ways and opportuniHillsborough ties that are available Community in Florida. College in FLATE is one of Brandon. 39 Advanced According to Technological HCC officials, Education Centers in the Engineering the United States Technology focused on improving Experience science, technology, (ETE) tours are engineering, and conducted on a yearly basis by Area students visit the engineering technology mathematics educalab at Hillsborough Community College. tion and training to the Florida meet the needs of American advanced Advanced Technological Education technology industries. Visit www.fl-ate.org. (FLATE), the Florida-based National


431 Lithia Pinecrest Rd., Brandon


April 2016

Valrico Edition

Page 29


There is something about the summer that most of us look forward to. Those hot and humid days make us slow down. Without the hectic school schedules, what can you do to keep the kids entertained? Before you know it, the summer will be here and there are many local options to choose from. For kids, summer spells time to sleep in, no homework and maybe an upcoming family vacation. With long days that seem to drag on, think about signing your child up to learn a new skill, or to try something adventurous, learn to swim, or about places and cultures far away. The staff at the Osprey Observer has collected the top recommendations for local summer camps and created this special pull out section. Whether kids want to enjoy some olympics fun at Kids ‘R’ Kids Summer Games camp, or maybe learn to swim at the iconic Brandon Sports & Aquatic Center, home to Olympic swimmers and divers, there is plenty to do. Enjoy themed weeks that include Futuristic Fun, Fear Factor, Under the Big Top and other fun subjects. Kids can look forward to tons of field trips at Camp Primrose Summer Camp with explorations and fun including field trips every week to places like MOSI and the Ringling Museum or hiking at Lettuce Lake Park. Ostinger Baseball summer camps provide hands on training from professional baseball players. Or Hillsborough Community College offers camps for students interested in FLATE technology and more. At Happy Days Summer camp, your child will enjoy many field trips to fun places

such as the Florida Aquarium and Dinosaur World. My Gym in Brandon will keep your child entertained through movement, while A Child’s Haven will offer a mix of education along with great field trips. Maybe your kids would like to spend the summer “horsing around.” R&R Ranch offers just that opportunity, and not just to learn to horseback ride, but also about the care of the horses. Artist campers will enjoy projects at Art Monkey or Center Place camps, and a Christian curriculum is offered at The Peacock’s Plume. At Music Showcase, music and theatre take the stage and so can your child. Musicals such as Fiddler on the Roof and High School Musical will be offered, and your child can hold starring roles in these and other popular musicals offered from the Florida Academy of Performing Arts for children ages 5 and up. Patel Conservatory located at the STRAZ in Tampa offers budding young actors a chance to participate in dance, theater and music. Morning Glory campers will enjoy biweekly field trips, and The Learning Experience offers themed weeks. The local YMCA will offer many types of camps which mix fun along with great learning experiences. With choices of half or full day camps, there is something for everyone. For dates, prices and registration information on these and more, turn the page and enjoy this special section and have a great summer. Did we miss one? Let us know by e-mailing subject line “Summer Camp” to michelle@ospreyobserver.com and we will be sure to add to our full listing online.

Themed Weeks At BSAC Promise Creativity And Fun

What should we do with the kids this summer? At Brandon Sports & Aquatic Center (BSAC) your child gets the statepark old-fashioned camp experience you had as a child, with some modern technology, like Wii Challenge Competitions, thrown in. The Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center has the most comprehensive summer camp in the greater Brandon area for ages 3 to 14. In addition, each child has the opportunity to experience all of the sports that you have come to expect at BSAC; swimming, tennis, diving and more. Each child has option to attend BSAC's Summer Camp per day or week. A Full Day Program is available from 7 a.m.-6:30 p.m. for $145/week per child. Half day programs, 7 a.m.-1 p.m. or 16:30 p.m. are available from $85/week per child. There is a $35 daily charge per child for a one day drop-in fee. Advance notice required and also a $35 registration fee per child. Camp weeks run from Monday, June 8 through Friday, August 21. Visit bit.ly/1W6OcHz for more information on the weekly themes. Contact Youth Development Director Christie Lemar at clemar@mybsac.org or call member services at 689-0908 for more information on camps.

Kids ‘R’ Kids Summer Games is an olympic themed camp this year.

Kids ‘R’ Kids Offers Global View of Rio 2016 Olympic Games

Enroll your kids for Summer Games 2016 Camp at Kids R Kids. The all new Kids ‘R’ Kids Summer Games prove the ideal destination for 5 to 12 year old boys and girls. By providing a global view of Rio 2016 Olympic Games, campers will experience an interactive peek inside participating countries’ cultures, customs, cuisine and more. Add to that a unique twist on the games themselves, and campers will experience 10 weeks designed to instill confidence, encourage teamwork and foster fun. After 30 years of providing unforgettable summer camp experiences for children, Kids ‘R’ Kids has found that whenever you combine physical activity, interactive learning and good old-fashioned fun – everybody wins. The cost is $155 per


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Located in Park Square - FishHawk Ranch

just 10 minutes from Brandon, Valrico, and Riverview!


Our instructors have 30 years combined professional playing and coaching experience.

Session 1 June 20-24 (M-F)

Session 2 July 11-15 (M-F)

Session 3 July 25-29 (M-F)

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week (new families only) and includes field trips, meals and transportation. Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Valrico is located at 4321 Lynx Paw Tr. in Valrico. For more information on this location, call 657-6200. Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Circa/FishHawk is located at 5815 Kids Crossing Dr. in Lithia. For more information, call 526-7000.

Let Your Imagination Take Flight At Camp Primrose

This summer, imagination takes flight at Summer Adventure Club at Primrose. Among exciting classroom activities, camp “Explorers” will be going on two field trips every week to enjoy what the local community has to offer. These trips include a voyage aboard Captain Memo’s pirate ship, “cooking” at the California Pizza Kitchen, hiking at Lettuce Lake Park, an afternoon of Improv at the Florida

Studio Theater, trips to MOSI and the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, and more. Even with all the fun, Primrose has many learning opportunities planned through its creative, hands-on curriculum, emphasizing literacy, science, and mathematics, while keeping young minds sharp this summer. Its experienced teachers are trained in education and safety. Summer Adventure Club is now accepting registrations for children aged 5 to 10. Visit the school at 1280 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico or call 4385980 for more information.

Kids Are On The Move At My Gym Summer Camp

My Gym is offering Summer Camp for ages 3 through 13 years 11 months. During camp, children move and stay active throughout the program, and just like all My Gym classes and programs, no two days are ever the same. My Gym Camp was created to enhance physical development, promote social interaction, and bring about personal success. The cost for non-members is $31 per half-day (three hours). For members the cost is $29. Bulk discount options are available. All children must be pottytrained. Healthy snacks and all-natural juice will be served to all campers during

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each camp day. Space is limited, so sign up today. Those paying in advance will have a guaranteed spot. Walk-ins are welcome if there is availability. For more information, call 579-6872 or book online.

Patel Conservatory Offers Dance, Theater And Music Camps, Classes

The Straz Center’s Patel Conservatory, located in downtown Tampa, offers nationally recognized intensives, camps and classes in the areas of dance, theater and music. Whether your child is skilled in the arts or wants to participate for the very first time, it offers a fun-filled summer for students of all ages and skill levels at our state-of-the-art facility. For more information, visit patelconservatory.org or call 222-1002.

Your Child’s Best Summer Ever At YMCA Camps

At the YMCA, you kids will feel welcome and supported in their developmental journeys. This summer you are invited to enroll your kids in YMCA Summer Camps. The days will be full of educational adventures and exciting exploration. They will meet new lifelong

friends along the way. Summer camps run from Monday, June 13 through Friday, August 5. Camps start at $135 per week. Camp hours are from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. with extended care from 7-9 a.m. and 4-6 p.m. at no additional cost. For more detailed information or to register online, visit www.tampaymca.org.

Themed Weekly Camps Offered At A Child’s Haven

Now enrolling ages 1 to 10 for Camp Superkids at A Child’s Haven, which will take place from Monday, June 13 through Friday, August 5. There will be two weekly field trips for K5 through fifth grade. The cost is $115 a week for K5 through fifth grade and includes all field trips and activity fees. Healthy lunch and snacks provided along Happy Day Summer Camp includes hands on activities for children with fun academic summer studies, ages 1-10. character building, arcade recreMusic And Acting Fun At The ation room and activiFlorida Academy of Performing Make Summer Days Happy Days At ties. Pick your week Arts Happy Day Summer Camp or come all summer. Summer Camp at the Florida Happy Day Summer Camp is for A Child’s Haven is Academy of Performing Arts will allow ages 1 to 10. There are weekly themes located at 1520 your child’s creativity to surface. They and theme days that include arts & crafts, Brentwood Hills Blvd. can choose from Music, Acting, friendship place, academic summer fun, in Valrico. For more Singing, Guitar and Drums. There will music, sports & games, information, call 684be field trips and more character & manners, ice 1622 or visit achildshavenschool.com. fun. Acting in musicals cream social, pizza parties, will also be offered: bouncy house and giant Create Great Memories At Art Knight at Dawn Kids, slide along with outdoor Monkey’s Summer Art Camp Fiddler on the Roof, water play. Art Monkey is now enrolling for sumHigh School Musical The cost is $88 per mer art camp. Your kids can enjoy creatand HONK! Camp is week for upcoming K5 to ing on a pottery wheel, canvas painting, for ages 5 and up and fifth grade campers. This includes all sculptures, mosaics, glass fusing and is available both for the full day or half field trips and weekly activities such as more. Camp classes are small so that day. There is free early drop-off and after bowling, skating, AMC Movies, state each artist can receive individual attencamp pick-up. The parks, MOSI, public library, Publix, tion. The camp counselors are expeFlorida Academy of Florida Aquarium, Lowry Park Zoo, rienced and great with kids. Performing Arts is Dinosaur World and more. There are three age groups for located at 402 Oakfield Happy Day is open from Monday camp: ages 4-6, 7-14 and an Dr. in Brandon. For to Friday from 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. and evening Teen Camp (only one) for more information, call is located at 722 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. in ages 14-16. 490-2787 or visit Brandon. For more information, call 685Art Monkey is located in faopa.org. 0028. FishHawk Ranch’s Park Square at

Themed weekly camps. You pick which camps to attend. 2 weekly field trips for K5 - 5th grade


Weekly Fee for K5 - 5th Grade

Includes ALL Field Trips & Activity Fees

Healthy Lunch and Snacks Fun Academic Summer Studies Character Building Awesome Friendships Arcade Recreation Room Tons of Fun Activities

A Child’s Haven

1520 Brentwood Hills Blvd, Valrico S of Hwy 60, N or Lumsden, off Mt. Carmel • CHC 404


9805 Bryant Rd. in Lithia. For more information, call 653-3819 or visit www.rrranchlithia.com.

Summer Camp Summer Camp Camp at Summer at

Center Place Summer Art Workshops Will Keep Creativity Flowing

Who knew art could be so much fun? There Camps Dates: at Camps Dates: Camps Dates:are so many choices this June 15th June 15th through through June 15th August 5th August 5th through summer for your 7-16 at August 5thyear old students at Camps Dates: Summer R & R Ranch Sign Up forJune 15th Place Fine Arts SignCenter Up for Camps teach We specializeWe in horse experiences for through Sign Up for specialize in horse experiences for campers Summer Camp Summer Camp where they can learn August 5th to child ride horses as well as how to care for the young beginner riders. We specialize in horse experiences forSpace Space is limited. theand young child and beginner riders. Summer Camp is limited. & Hay Rides • Daily Trail Rides and other farm animals. them the young child and beginner riders. Space is limited. $195 per wk. Only about painting, drawing, • Daily Trail Rides & Hay Rides Only $195 per wk. (Mon. thru Fri. 9am - 5pm) • Horse Education • Daily Trail Rides & Hay Rides Only per wk. and (Mon. thru Fri. 9am$195 - Sign 5pm)Up for • Horse Education pottery, modeling 16114 Churchview Dr. inin Lithia. For more (Mon. thru Fri. 9am - 5pm) We Also Offer: Field Trips,We Parties, Rides,experiences Play Groups &for More •Pony Horse Education specialize horse Summer We Also Offer: Field Trips,Trail Pony Parties, Trail Rides, Play Groups & MoreCamp more. the young child and beginner riders. Trail Rides, Bryant RdOffer: Lithia, FLTrips, 33547 9805or We Field Pony Parties, Play & More SpaceGroups is limited. information toAlso register online, visit 9805rrranchlithia.com Bryant Rd Lithia, FL 33547 Visit us on •the web: Daily Rides &web: Hay Rides per wk. 9805 Bryant Rd Lithia, FLOnly 33547$195 Classes are offered VisitTrail us on the rrranchlithia.com www.artandicecream.com or call 315For moreFor info call 813-653-3819 (Mon. thru Fri. 9am - 5pm) • Horse Education Visit uscall on the 813-653-3819 web: rrranchlithia.com more info from Monday through Friday from 9:30 9803. We Also Offer: Field Trips, Pony Parties, Rides, Play Groups & More For more info call Trail 813-653-3819 a.m.-3 p.m. and include art journaling, art 9805 Bryant Rd Lithia, FL 33547 Visit us on the web: rrranchlithia.com beginning photography, creative 3mural, Lots of Fun Horsing Around At call R & R813-653-3819 For more info D masks, family pottery, paper sculptures, Ranch Summer Camp recycled art, space art and more. From Monday, June 13 through Center Place Fine Arts is located at Friday, August 5, your child can attend 619 Vonderburg Dr., Ste. B in Brandon. camp at R&R Ranch, which specializes in Visit www.centerplacebrandon.org to horse experiences for the young child learn about each of the classes or call and beginner riders. Your child will enjoy 685-8888 for more information. daily trail rides and hay rides along with

class for fall and summer. It has a double entry secure facility, camera system, and new playground. The entire staff is trained in preschool education, CPR and first-aid certified. For more information, visit www.thepeacocksplume.com or call 6840700.

Summer Camp

learning about grooming and the care of horses and farm animals. Field trips, pony rides and trail rides are offered. They will also enjoy movies and popcorn in the air conditioned camp house, as well as the petting zoo with baby bunnies, chicks, ducks and baby pigs. Also included are arts, crafts and more. Camp runs Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The cost for camp is $195 per week. R&R Ranch is located at

The Peacock’s Plume Offers Christian Curriculum Summer Camps

The Peacock’s Plume offers a rigorous Christian curriculum for children, 6 weeks to 5-years-old. It has a language program incorporating sign-language, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish. There is a Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten

2016 Ostingers Baseball Academy Summer Camps

Ostingers Baseball Camp will take place during the weeks of June 20-24, July 11-15, and July 25-29 from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the FishHawk Sports Complex. Ostingers staff is made up of all former professional players who instruct. They want to teach the game from the ground up. The camp is not a full day camp with video games, indoor activites, etc. The instructors include Jim Osting, a baseball Instructor with 10 years of professional baseball playing experience; two years of Major League Experience (Padres and Brewers); Patrick Ryan– baseball instructor with eight years professional pitching experience; Kris Wilken– Head Baseball Coach at Bloomingdale High School and college and high school players

Christian Preschool 6 weeks - 5 years Secure Entry & Internet Viewing Mandarin Chinese and Spanish Language Programs FREE Summer VPK

trained by Ostingers Academy to assist your child throughout their camp experience. Additional help is provided from Ostinger players current and past to make the campers’ experience one of a kind. With the instructors and the staff, the ratio per camper is around 6:1. This ratio allows for added reps for each player and helps to break up the groups in age appropriate format. The cost is $175 (multi week/ multi camper discount). For more information, visit ostingbaseball.com or call 737-3000.

Youth & Teen Summer Camps Offered At HCC

This summer, Hillsborough Community College (HCC) is offering Tampa Bay’s best camp options. Kids’ College offers fun with a purpose through a wide variety of education topics and interests. The camps bring children and teens opportunities to experience quality programs, learn new skills, make meaningful friendships, and rediscover themselves outside of their usual routines. Dedicated, professional, energetic staff members are enthusiastic about making camp exciting and educational. The many various programs are offered at nine HCC locations including

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813-684-0700 www.ThePeacocksPlume.com 1094 Bloomingdale Avenue Valrico

• 6 Weeks Through 12 Years • Full & Part Time Options • Open: M-F 6am to 6:30pm • Creative Curriculum for Infants & Toddlers • ABC Mouse Computer Technology • Brainwaves Curriculum • APPLE Accreditation • CITA Approved Curriculum • Security Code Access Entry • FREE Internet Viewing of Your Child’s Day • Outdoor Playgrounds with Water Park • Before & After School Care: 6-12 Years

Now Enrolling Summer Camp $155 per week

Includes field trips, meals, and transportation New families only. Expires 8/30/16

Voluntary Pre Kindergarten 2016-17

Stowers, Valrico Academy, FishHawk Creek, Bevis, Lithia Springs, Alafia, Cimino, and Foundation Christian

FREE 3 Hr Program with “Pay for rest of day” Option

• Nutritious Meals & Snacks: Low Salt & Sugar • Spanish & Music Included • Trained Professional Staff, Certified in First Aid & CPR • Extracurricular Programs

CIRCA FISHHAWK - 813-526-7000 5815 Kids Crossing Drive

(Located next to Stowers Elementary and Mosaic)



• Accelerated Pre-K Curriculum with Math, Science, Spanish, Music, Sign Language & More • Preparation for National Kindergarten Standards • Must be 4 years old by September 1, 2016 • Must be Florida resident

Two Great Locations!

VALRICO - 813-657-6200 4321 Lynx Paw Trail

(Located across fromLithia Springs Elementary)


Tampa, Brandon, Ruskin, Riverview and Plant City. Scholarships are available through Suncoast Credit Union Foundation. To register or for more info on class options, visit www.Tampa Training.com or call 2596010.

Register Now For Learning Fun And Hands-On Activities At Camp TLE

Who says learning has to end during the summer months? At The Learning Experience (TLE), all children can stay engaged in hands-on learning activities throughout the summer. Children complete science experiments, learn new sign language and create exquisite art projects while still having plenty of time for sun and fun in the stateof-the-art outdoor playground. Register now At TLE FishHawk for nine thematic weeks such as Water Play Days, Outdoor Sports and Activities and more. Camp is for ages 2 and up. TLE is located at 16233 Bayberry Glen Dr. in Lithia. Mention reading this in the Osprey Observer and receive a special tuition offer (only at FishHawk location). For more information, call 681-5544.

Summer Intensives, Classes at Dance Quest International

Dance Quest in a dance studio in Brandon with Christian values which seeks to always encourage and uplift dancers, inspiring students to strive for excellence while utilizing discipline, love and selfworth through dance. It offers quality and professional training in every stage of dance instruction to achieve the ultimate education and base in the art of dance. Dance Quest is hosting several clinics, intensives, workshops and classes during the summer. Registration is open online at www.DanceQuestOnline.com and at the studio located at 853 Lithia Pinecreast Rd. in Brandon Intro to Contemporary, 3-Day Clinic: Dancers will get a taste of contemporary as they learn the basics of contemporary movement. Contemporary dance is a fusion of ballet, jazz, and modern techniques. To enroll in this clinic, students must have at least one year of ballet experience, and one year of jazz is also preferred. •Contemporary Clinic I (7–12 yrs) June 21-23, 5-6:30 p.m. $70 •Contemporary Clinic II (13 yrs and up) June 21 - 23, 7:30-9 p.m. $70

Intro to Tap, 3-Day Workshop: This work, centre floor work, strength building, concentrated workshop will be the perfect flexibility, pointe work, and history knowlintroduction for the dancers who have litedge. tle or no Tap experience and are looking •Apprentice Level: Ballet Intensives, to take further Tap classes. In this workJuly 25 - 28, 9 a.m.-12 Noon, 4-day intenshop you will learn the basics, fundamen- sive: $180/week. tals and terminol•Junior Level: ogy of Tap techBallet Intensives, nique, and highJuly 11 - 14, 9 lighting the impora.m.-1p.m. and/or tance of rhythm July 18-21, 9 and sounds to a.m.-1p.m., 4-day prepare you for intensive: the next level. $240/week. Dancers taking •Senior Level: this workshop will Ballet Intensives, have the basics to June 27 - 30, 9 fuse into weekly a.m.-1p.m. and/or Summer Tap July 5-8, 9 a.m.-1 Classes. p.m., 4-day inten•Intro Tap (7 sive: $240/week. years thru Adult) Stay Strong June 21-23, 6:30All Summer 7:30 p.m. $50 Long Ballet Classes Intensives Four Dance Quest International in Dance Quest weekly classBrandon is hosting is excited to offer es beginning several camps, a new Ballet July 5. clinics, classes and intensives for Intensive Summer is dancers of every level this summer. Program with its the perfect professional and internationally renowned time for your dancer to be just starting out instructors. The program embraces a nur- in her very first dance class, or even turing and encouraging approach that keeping your routine and skills up as your develops the dancer to grow in the foundancer continues to learn and grow. First dation of Ballet and supports excellence dance genre (4-week session) is $60 with in other areas of dance. Intensives will $5 off each additional session. Call for full challenge and help dancers grow in their schedule. Ballet technique & terminology, barre Summer Mini Dance Camps

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813-684-0700 www.ThePeacocksPlume.com 1094 Bloomingdale Avenue Valrico

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4333 Lynx Paw Trail, Valrico (located in the RiverHills Plaza)

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Reading, Math, Writing, Advanced Math & Sciences, Spanish, SAT/ACT Prep, Common Core Prep, Study Skills & College Planning

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Tutoring Club of Valrico

Princess of Kindness & Courage Dance Camp (Ages 3-7). Come celebrate a journey of kindness and courage through dance inspired by Cinderella. Your dancer will have a week filled with crafts, games, story and play time, and dance, as this beautiful tale is used to inspire and encourage the girls to be a kind princess after God's own heart. June 27–30, 10 a.m.-12 Noon, $70. July 11– 14, 1:30-3:30 p.m., $70. Very Fairy Princess Mini Camp (Ages 3-5 & 6-9). Come spread your wings and let the fairy in you fly as we dance, craft, have story time, and discover all of the very fairy ways of the Land of Love. Dancers will learn about all five love languages as they dance and learn about each Love Fairy. June 27–30,1:30–3:30 p.m, $70. July 11–14, 10 a.m.-12 Noon, $70. Mary Poppins Musical Theatre Camp (Ages 5-8 & 9-12). Sing, act, and dance in Disney's most popular and timeless musicals of all times, Mary Poppins. Hone in on your theatrical dance skills this summer with all of your friends and come and dance with Dance Quest's very own Mary Poppins: Mrs. Jenny! It will be a week to remember with a Mini Showcase for friends and family on the last day of camp. July 18-21, 12:30-3:30 p.m., $150 It's never too late to register at Dance Quest International. Register from the

convenience of your home with the online registration system. If you are new to Dance Quest, please schedule an observation for class placement. Dancers registered before Tuesday, May 17 will receive $5 off each item (camp, class, etc). No summer registration fee. Call 842-1687 for more information.

MAC Summer Weekly Sports Camps

The MAC is offering five camps during the summer at 216 N. Parsons Ave. in Brandon. Most of the camps will run from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. with the exception of Tennis Camp which will run from 9 a.m.-12 Noon. Harlem Legends Basketball will be offered from Monday through Friday, June 20-24. The cost is $135. Basketball Camp will take place from Monday through Friday, July 11-15. The cost is $90. Soccer Camp will take place Monday-Friday, July 25-29. The cost is $90, and Tennis Camp will take place Monday through Friday, August 1-5 for $50. All camps are for ages 7-14 except Volleyball Camp will be for ages 8-14. Sign up at least one week prior to each camp. The cost includes a T-shirt. Registration forms and payment can be mailed to The MAC at FBC Brandon

at 216 N. Parsons Avenue, Brandon, FL 33510; or dropped off at the MAC front desk. For more information, call 3153280 or visit www.fbcbrandon.org/summercamps.

Summer Programs At The Tutoring Club

Don’t let the academics rest over the summer months. Your student will receive individualized instruction from a staff of professional tutors at The Tutoring Club, now enrolling for its summer programs. Individualized programs for students Kindergarten through twelfth grade are available in reading, math, writing, advanced math & sciences, Spanish, SAT/ACT Prep, Common Core prep, study skills and college planning. The tutors work to reduce stress and build confidence by creating an individualized program for each student starting at a level that he or she can handle and then progressing through the grade levels as rapidly as the student’s learning pace allows. Results are guaranteed. Tutoring Club is located at 4333 Lynx Paw Trail in Valrico (in the River Hills plaza). For more information, call 6819900 or visit www.TutoringClub.com.

MOSI Summer Science Camps Gather STEAM

MOSI’s Summer Science Camp brings science and technology, engineering, art, and math (STEAM) alive through hands-on experiments and building projects. From extracting DNA to launching rockets to building robots, MOSI camps are about creating the experiences that expand interests and make dreams a reality. Doing real science with the tools and technology used by professionals is just one of the ways MOSI Summer Science Camp inspires campers with a “can do” attitude that can last a lifetime. Real science coupled with exciting experiments, simulations, explorations, and inventions will help you discover the innovator within. MOSI Summer Science Camps will take place from Monday, June 13 through Friday, August 12 and is offered for preschoolers to high school students. Convenient extended care is available from 7– 9 a.m. and also from 4–6:30 p.m. Daily hot lunches are available. Become a MOSI member and save 25 percent on camp fees. MOSI is located at 4801 E. Fowler Ave. in Tampa. For more information, call 9876000 or visit www.mosi.org.

Page 36

Valrico Edition

Volume 13, Issue 4

Limit 3 packs


April 2016

Valrico Edition

Page 37

With Arts & Entertainment Editor Kathy L. Collins

The Artwork Of Chad Loving On Display At Bruton Memorial Library

Chad Loving’s artwork and jewelry is on display during the month of April at the Bruton Memorial Library in Plant City.

The art exhibit for the month of April at the Bruton Memorial Library in Plant City is from the library’s own, Chad Loving. There are 19 pieces in Loving’s thoughtful and creative exhibit. Loving said, “I have assembled a show of many different styles and media, including realistic and abstract drawings, paintings and even jewelry. My art is inspired by many different subjects including people, flowers, fashion and textiles.” Loving explained that the pieces demonstrate where he is in his artistic endeavors at this time. “I am exploring new media and subjects. I used to stick to abstracts. I am now trying to challenge myself and do realistic paintings,” he said. Loving organized the exhibit in such

a way that it takes the viewer from realistic paintings to abstract ones. Loving’s pieces are striking and interesting. Each has a story behind it. Some of the pieces came about as a result of projects he did in an English literature class in college, and some were a result of studying in London. In addition to the drawings and paintings, Loving creates jewelry made with wire, glass and minerals, which is on display in the Library’s display case. All of the pieces are inspired by fabric brought back from Tanzania by his sister. Loving said, “I have been interested in art since I was very young and always try to find ways to incorporate it into my studies and art work. I love to create and encourage others to create.” The Bruton Memorial Library is located at 302 McLendon St. in Plant City. The art exhibits rotate on a monthly basis and can be viewed by the public during the normal operating hours of the library. Artists who would like to have work displayed can stop by the front desk and pick up an Artist’s Application. Visit www.plantcity/gov.com/library or call 7579215.

Plant City Entertainment To Present The Rainmaker Plant City Entertainment will present City Entertainment veteran, Kelley The Rainmaker on Gustafson. “I love Friday, May 13 and 20 this play and wantand Saturday, May 14 ed to do a play of and 21 at 8 p.m., and substance. I wanted on Sunday, May 15 to do something and 22 at 2 p.m. at the that the actors could theatre located at 101 dissect and sink N. Thomas St. in histheir teeth into. This toric downtown Plant cast gets to display City. Tickets are $16 a variation of emofor adults; $14 for stutions as we tell the dents and seniors; story of faith, family and $12 for groups of and believing in 10 or more. your dreams.” The Rainmaker is Gustafson set during the Great added, “I am thrilled Depression in the to be directing this Midwest at the time of Richard Nash clasTerry Abbot stars as Starbuck and April a paralyzing drought. sic. Katherine Golombek stars as Lizzie in Plant City Entertainment’s upcoming production of Hepburn won an The characters The Rainmaker. include a girl who is a Academy Award for spinster, her father and two brothers. The her role as the spinster, Lizzy Curry, in the father and brothers are more worried 1956 movie version.” about the girl’s marriage prospects than Gustafson has been with Plant City about their dying cattle. Out of nowhere, a Entertainment since she was 15-yearssweet talking con man with an interesting old. While her career took her away from sales pitch comes to town. For just $100 Plant City for many years, she is now the man promises to bring rain. The happily back. Gustafson directed Plant Rainmaker is both refreshing and persist- City Entertainment’s production of The ent, so the family agrees and begins Red Velvet Cake War in 2011 and serves banging on brass drums in an effort to as the secretary on the Board of rattle the sky. Meanwhile, the Rainmaker Managers. turns his magic on the girl and persuades Group and advance tickets are availher that she is a real beauty. She believes able at Hardee’s Fashions, 1501 N. this just as her father believed that man Wheeler St. in Plant City. Tickets can also could bring rain. Both rain and love come. be purchased by calling 754-4929 or The Rainmaker is directed by Plant online at www.pceshows.com.

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Mondovics tamas@ er.com ospreyobserv

Rd. Pinecrest11 900 Lithia n, FL 335 Brando -24 18 657 rver.com bse eyo spr www.o

Volume 13, Issue 4

Sports Connection 657-2418 www.ospreyobserver.com

Aerial Athletes Take Skydiving To Extreme During Canopy Piloting Championships By Tamas Mondovics Statistically, best paraskydiving or parachutists (and for chuting may not be the first time as dangerous as ever, 12 athdriving, yet the letes from the sport takes its rightCuban national ful place on the list team) who will of extreme sports, put their skydivboasting of talented ing skills to the athletes who will test. always find the way In Canopy to push their abiliFormation, ties to the limit. teams of two Such is the and four deploy case with the 55 their parachutes top competitive aerimmediately ial athletes from after exiting the around the U.S. (31 plane, and build in the open class courageous forand 24 in mations while advanced) who holding onto took skydiving to each other’s the extreme as they canopies. In competed in the Freefall Style, 2016 U.S. an individual Parachute competitor perAssociation (USPA) A skydiver comes into a distance landing during day three of the 2016 U.S. Parachute Association National Skydiving Championships of forms a predeCanopy Piloting held this month. National Skydiving termined series Jeannie said. “Of course, it is not for Matt Shull, Batch, Nicholas Ian Bobo and Championships of Canopy Piloting held of loops and spins as quickly as possible. everyone. Canopy Piloting particularly, Thomas Dellibac, to name a few. earlier this month at Skydive City, one of Founded in 1946 and celebrating its adds “These athletes have the challenge of controlling speed, come all wellFlorida’s premier skydiving centers in 70th anniversary this year, the United equipped to battle it out for the limited distance and accuracy one jump at a Zephyrhills. States Parachute Association (USPA) is U.S. time.” Team compete that will the slots on “Canopy piloting isn't what people a nonprofit association dedicated to proThe aerial competition will continue at the World Championships this summer really think of when they think about skymoting safe skydiving nationwide and at the Canada,” in diving,” said USPA Sports Promotion establishing strict safety standards, trainFlorida Koreen said. Director, Nancy Koreen, during the three ing policies and programs at more than As Skydiving pro day competition. “Instead of slowing 230 USPA-affiliated skydiving centers Center in competitor, down, skydivers will attempt to gain throughout the United States. Lake canopy speed as they descend and swoop Each year, USPA’s 38,000-plus Wales, instructor through narrow slalom-like courses for members and half a million first-time May 28and owner hundreds of yards, just a few feet above jump students make about 3.2 million June 2, of Alter Ego the ground or water at speeds reaching jumps in the United States. USPA reprewith the Canopy 90-plus miles per hour.” sents skydivers before all levels of govBartholomew’s National 2016 Championships of USPA Jeannie, Piloting, wife Koreen emphasized that the stakes ernment, the public and aviation, and Canopy Formation and Style and who has been skydiving for more than 10 were sky-high this year with a number of sanctions national skydiving competitions Accuracy, years, sport spoke highly which requires extreme preciand the the of experienced competitors, including event and records. sion as competitors attempt to land on a competition, while putting things into perleader, world and national champion, For more information about USPA dot after falling 10,000 ft. dime-sized adrenaline all for lovers. spective Curtis Bartholomew from Florida, who and upcoming events, visit “I love the sport, always have,” The event will see 50 of the country’s www.uspa.org. was joined by a list of great talents like

April 2016

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A Day In Photos At The 2016 USPA National Skydiving Championships Photos by Tamas Mondovics

(Left) Canopy Piloting World Champion Curt Bartholomew and fellow skydivers check their gear after a distance jump.

(Right) A jumper lands hard during the 2016 U.S. Parachute Association National Skydiving Championships of Canopy Piloting.

(Below) A skydiver slaloms through a narrow course just a few above water while gaining speeds reaching 90-plus miles per hour.

(Above) Canopy Piloting competitor Jeannie Bartholomew repacks her gear after the first jump of the day.

Page 40

Volume 13, Issue 4

Valrico Edition

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Osprey Observer 2016-04 Valrico  

Osprey Observer 2016-04 Valrico