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Two Sections, 40 Pages of Community News


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Volume 11, Issue 8 Ph: 657-2418 P U B L I S H I N G




Brandon High Graduate Joshua Ledauaponte Participates In Maritime Warfare Exercise

Superintendent Promises Districtwide Success During Back To School News Conference

A 2013 Brandon Green Fleet yearHigh School gradulong initiative will ate and Riverview also play a major native is serving in role in RIMPAC. the U.S. Navy and The initiative highparticipating in the lights global operaworld’s largest intertions using energy national maritime conservation measwarfare exercise, the ures and alternative Rim of the Pacific fuel blends to Exercise (RIMPAC). demonstrate how Petty Officer 3rd optimizing energy Class Joshua use increases Ledauaponte is an resiliency and operoperations specialist ational readiness. aboard USS San During RIMPAC, Diego, currently almost all participatoperating out of Pearl ing units will operHarbor, Hawaii. ate using an A Navy operaapproved alternatetions specialist is fuel blend. Riverview resident Joshua Ledauaponte is responsible for surTwenty-six currently serving in the Navy and will particiveying maritime pate in the world’s largest international mar- nations, 45 surface itime warfare exercise, the Rim of the ships in the area and ships, five subPacific Exercise. alerting the captain to marines, more any threats. than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel “I'm looking forward to this experiwill participate in the biennial Rim of the ence and being able to travel,” said Pacific Exercise. This year's exercise Ledauaponte. includes forces from Australia, Brunei, According to Navy officials, RIMPAC Canada, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, provides a unique training opportunity that France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, helps participants foster and sustain Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, cooperative relationships that are critical New Zealand, Norway, People's Republic to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and of China, Peru, the Republic of Korea, the security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC Republic of the Philippines, Singapore, 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series Thailand, Tonga, the United Kingdom and that began in 1971. the United States. The theme of RIMPAC 2016 is “What I've learned about myself since "Capable, Adaptive, Partners," Navy offijoining the Navy is that I can push myself cials explained. The participating nations further and excel in new environments,” and forces will exercise a wide range of said Ledauaponte. “I’ve also witnessed capabilities and demonstrate the inherent how we can come together as a team.” flexibility of maritime forces. Visit www.cpf.navy.mil/rimpac/ for The Department of the Navy's Great more information.

things to reach his goals of graduation rate is to understand that every child counts and that the job of each teacher is to know their students and their needs. Speaking once again about the support in place for the more than 16,000 strong faculty, Eakins promised, “Every teacher will receive the support and the tools they need, when they need it, at their school site, so that they can best meet the needs of the most Photo Courtesy Hillsborough County Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins talks to Hillsborough important client we serve; our stuCounty Public School Board members, teachers and dents.” staff during the annual back to school news conferThe news conference would ence held at Mort Elementary, A Community School. not be complete without a discusSuperintendent Jeff Eakins was sion about transportation, which has recently joined by school board members reportedly earned some low ratings at the to explain his goals for the upcoming start of the 2015-2016 season. school year during the annual back to “We obviously had some issues that school news conference, held this year at needed to be addressed immediately,” Mort Elementary, A Community School. Eakins said, but added that under The event took place just two days Director Jim Beekman, Transportation before the start of the 2016-2017 season, communication and routing issues have which saw more than 200,000 students addressed. been return to the classroom at the nation’s Eakins emphasized that for the diseighth largest school district. trict to achieve its goals, each member To begin, Mort Principal Woodland must believe it can be attained. The press Johnson called on school board chair conference concluded with the ribbon cutApril Griffin who put things in perspective ting for Mort Elementary, A Community when she said, “I know we had an abbreSchool. Vsit www.sdhc.k12.fl.us. viated summer but that just means that


By Navy Office Of Community Outreach

By Tamas Mondovics

we really didn't get out of the school spirit and we are all excited to get back.” Taking his turn, Eakins reminded his audience that during his first year at the helm, the board went through a lot of changes and growth as a district but that his current, full team is now in place ready to work on the district’s strategic plan, including the four top priorities he introduced one year ago. “We are excited as now this plan will guide us to focus on these priorities,” Eakins said, adding that one of the biggest goals is to increase graduation rates. “By the year 2020, we are aiming for the graduation rate of 90 percent,” Eakins said. “This rate is unheard of in a district this size, but it will happen because of the people in Hillsborough County.” Eakins said that one of the main

In This Issue MASTERPIECES & MARTINIS..............PG 9 COASTAL CLEAN UP .........................PG 11 ZERO ENERGY HOMES .....................PG 12 HOA HOT TOPICS .............................PG 17

SEWING CLASSES FOR KIDS............PG 19 CHALKLINES .....................................PG 28 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT................PG 37 SPORTS CONNECTION...............PGS 38‐39



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Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

August 2016

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Brandon Edition

Brandon Foundation’s Angels Program Connects Community Members In Need






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By Libby Hopkins

and talents to serve someone in need.” The program’s first Evening of Hope was held in November of 2006 and they were able to create a database of Foundation Angels that continue to help families in our community every single day. “Our Angel Teams and Angel Providers often tell us how wonderful they feel to be able to help someone in need with their service and in return, they receive the greatest blessing,” Brewer said. The Foundation Angel Program is unique in that they match businesses The Brandon Foundation is hosting its 2016 Evening of Hope and Charity Check and individuals in the Brandon comPresentation on Friday, November 4. munity with individuals in need. “Most times the providers offer their services There is an old saying that goes, “If for free or deeply discounted,” Brewer we were all like angels, the world would said. “We ask our community to be the be a heavenly place.” To many in the eyes and ears and to submit a family in Brandon community, the Brandon need on our website. Our team leaders Foundation’s board members are considreview the requests, ensure they are then ered the angels that walk among us. The legitimate needs and then disburse the mission of the Brandon Foundation is to request to our team leaders who lead our improve the quality of life and shape the Angel Teams.” future of our community by creating public Once a team has accepted a family, awareness, developing resources and they will make a home visit to assess supporting initiatives that address local their needs and begin coordinating servicneeds. They do this through their Angels es with the Angel Providers. Program. To learn more about the Brandon “The Foundation Angel Program was Foundation and the Foundation Angel created in 2006 after several of us experiProgram, visit enced the loss of family members to the www.brandonfoundation.org or call 689devastating disease of cancer,” said the 6889. The foundation will be hosting its foundation’s Executive Director, Liz 2016 Evening of Hope and Charity Check Brewer. “We wanted to create a program Presentation on Friday, November 4 at that would engage our entire community The Regent. The Brandon Foundation is to help one another. While a business located at 1210 Millennium Pkwy. Ste. may not be able to write a check to spon2010 in Brandon. sor an event, they can give of their time


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Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

August 2016

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Brandon Edition

MOSI Forms Partnership With Behavioral Consulting Of Tampa Bay

Bay Area Athletes Shine At 2016 National Junior Disability Championships

ence,” the collaboration will lead to more vital science and math education for a wider range of students in the Brandon and Tampa Bay area, richer and more fulfilling time together for families that include children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and guidelines for other museums and businesses that are looking to create a more inclusive experience. “This is a fantastic way to take the expertise BCOTB has developed The Museum of Science and Industry has by working one-on-one with families formed a partnership with Behavioral since 2003 and bring it out into the Consulting of Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay community,” BCOTB To make fun and learning even more President and Founder Kelley Prince open to all families in Tampa Bay, the said. “Our families are always searching area’s leader in hands-on science learnfor places where they can spend time ing is teaming up with the community’s together that will be supportive of their largest provider of Autism Spectrum needs and won’t overwhelm them. We’re Disorder analysis and care. excited to help MOSI take that to the next The partnership between the level.” Museum of Science & Industry (MOSI) BCOTB and MOSI have already perand Behavioral Consulting of Tampa Bay formed a thorough assessment of the sci(BCOTB) is the first of its kind for either ence center. Some potential changes organization. identified in the study include revising “At MOSI, our core ideology is to maps and signs to clearly show families make science real for people of all ages what kinds of sensory information (lights, and backgrounds,” said Grayson Kamm, sounds, etc.) to expect in certain areas MOSI’s communications director. and rearranging some exhibits to allow “Accessibility and inclusiveness is at the families to bypass sections they may find heart of what we are all about. So as we overwhelming. “Some changes will come look at ways to eliminate any barriers to more quickly than others,” Kamm said. accessibility that we have unintentionally To learn more about BCOTB, visit created, it's a perfect fit to have a partner- www.bcotb.com or call their Brandon ship that helps us understand the best location at 440-4933. BCOTB Brandon ways to serve families who have memoffice is located at 9225 Bay Plaza Blvd. bers with Autism Spectrum Disorder.” Ste. 401. Learn more about MOSI at Working under the motto “partnering www.mosi.org. MOSI is located at 4801 toward a more autism accessible experiE. Fowler Ave. in Tampa.

Paralympic Sport backstroke. Tampa Bay (PSTB), a Danielle Kanas, 11, program of also came home with Hillsborough County 15 gold medals she Parks & Recreation, won in swimming and was pleased to track and field events. announce its recent Eric Lowry, 16, success at the annual Zach Woodke, 16, and Adaptive Sports USA Logan Krepop, 14, all Junior Nationals earned seven, four and Disability five gold medals Championships. The respectively, aside from week-long competia number of additional tion held in Middleton, silver and bronze Wisconsin saw hunmedals in similar dreds of athletes from events. all over the United The Adaptive Photo courtesy Hillsborough County A young athlete takes part in the States. Sports USA Junior annual USA Junior Nationals Disability The numbers Nationals is for athletes Championships. speak for themselves ages 6 to 22 with physias PSTB athletes set 14 National cal disabilities and is reportedly the oldest Records aside from returning home with and largest continuously held competitive 60 medals that included 42 gold, 17 silsports event in the country. ver, and one bronze. PSTB, which sees close to 300 athWhile the entire team merits the letes each week, provides year-round recognition, a couple of specific standout sports and recreation programs that proachievements includes PSTB’s Small mote physical activity, healthy lifestyles, Team Division (team size of two to five and recreational and competitive sports participants), which earned first place. opportunities for children and adults with Paralympic Sports Tampa Bay finished at physical disabilities. the top of its team division for the third According to Club Coordinator Andy year in a row. Chasanoff, the mission of PSTB is to proPSTB athlete Beecher Bruno, 18, mote health, independence and personal also came home with a special treat after growth for people with physical disabilities he received the “Spirit of Excellence” through sports. Award for swimming. “We are like a family,” Chasanoff During the event, Bruno earned 11 said, adding that he is particularly proud gold and three silver medals, including of the childrens performance. first place in five swim events; 50, 100, For more information and complete 200 yard freestyle, and 50 and 100 yard results, visit www.hillsboroughcounty.org.

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Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

Dance Party, Vendors Sought For Fair & More…

begins and ends at Amalie McLean Sbar, 10News WTSP, The Saunders, St. Arena. The route is an out and back Tampa Bay Times, Cox Media Public Library, course, taking participants across the Group andReeves Import located at 1505 Compiled by Michelle Colesanti, michelle@ospreyobserver.com Nebraska Ave. Platt Street Bridge and along the Motorcars/VW. For more informabeautiful and scenic Bayshore tion, call 229-1305 or visit runin Tampa, celeSaturday Night Swing Party At Boulevard. Prizes will be awarded to signup.com/Race/Events/FL/Tampa/G brate and help say thanks to local The Way 2 Dance 1st place overall male/female adult oodyGoodyTurkeyTrot. heroes at a community event. There Join The Way 2 Dance’s Monthly and 1st place overall male/female will be food, music, games, kid’s Saturday Night Dance Party on youth (ages 9 and under). First place Help For Quitting Tobacco activities along with a blood drive and Saturday, September 24 from 7-10 prizes will also be awarded by age Quitting tobacco isn't easy. raffles. City of Tampa police and fire p.m. The theme for the month is group (10-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, Finding help should be. Tobacco Free departments will be on site. This is a Rhinestone cowboy. The group class 50-59, 60-69, 70+). Strollers and Florida offers free tools and services free event which will include a private starts at 7 p.m. followed by the nondogs are to help you get started. In award ceremostop dance practice party from 8-10 welcome to September, free community worksite ny for local p.m. Mix music and variety of dances join the race, and clinic groups will be offered, with heroes. guaranteed. Bring your own music music and programs covering all forms of tobacSunshine Real and we will play too. Name your family fun. co. Free Nicotine replacement patchEstate of favorite song and we will buy it on One es, gum and lozenges will be availTampa Bay the spot and play it for you. The cost Hundred per- able, while supplies last and if medand Ann is $10 per person. The studio is cent of proically appropriate. The first class will Thompson and located at 610 Oakfield Dr. in ceeds raised be held Monday, September 12 at Associates Brandon. Call 966-4788 or visit from the 5:30 p.m. at the University of South Realty, who www.theway2dance.com. Goody Florida Area Health Education Center are associated Goody at 3515 E. Fletcher Ave., Ste. MDT with Homes for 5th Annual Gifts & Crafts Fair At Turkey 1400 in Tampa. An additional class Heroes, are The Bridges Seeking Local Gobble 5K will be available on Monday, the organizers Vendors will support September 19 at 5:30 p.m. at the of this event. Vendors with unique gifts and the LIVEOakfield Medical Plaza at 276 S. for Homes Heroes Tasking Force Planning Committee for event crafts are invited to register for the STRONG at Moon Ave. Ste. 260 in Brandon. PreHeroes started honoring local heroes. annual Gifts & Crafts Fair to be held the YMCA registration is required by calling just after the on Saturday, October 8 from 10 a.m.program for cancer survivors and 974-7889. For additional classes, tragic events of 9/11. This nationwide 3 p.m. at The Bridges Retirement their families. The free 12-week provisit www.ahectobacco.com/calendar. is dedicated to giving back program Community, 11350 Bloomingdale gram offers people affected by canto those that serve our country and Ave. in Riverview. Interested vencer a safe, supportive environment to Book Sale At Bloomingdale community on a daily basis when dors, contact 413participate in physical and social Regional Library they are buying or selling a home. 8900 or jnoah@thebridgesbvm.com. activities focused on strengthening The Friends of the Bloomingdale There will be parking at 1475 Tampa the whole person. Regional Library, located at 1906 Park Plaza in Tampa. First Seasonal Meeting For Registration is available at runBloomingdale Ave. in Valrico, will Riverview Garden Club signup.com (prices increase August hold a fall book sale at the library on Tampa YMCA Invites Community The Riverview Garden Club will 31): $30 per person for individual 5k; Saturday, September 24 from 10 To 2nd Annual Goody Goody hold its first seasonal 2016/2017 15 per person for run/walk 1 mile; a.m.–4 p.m. The money raised from Turkey Gobble meeting on Wednesday, September $30 per person for team 5k. the donated books will directly fund On Thanksgiving morning, 14 at 10 a.m. in the Riverview Civic The Goody Goody Turkey Gobble the Life Story Writing classes and the Tampa Metropolitan Area Center, located at 11020 Park Dr., 5K is also sponsored by Rocke BWC programs held at the library. YMCA invites community members to Riverview. The guest speaker is Joe Parr, Director of Horticulture at Busch participate in a fun 5K or one mile walk/run in downtown Tampa. All abilGardens Tampa. There is free parkity levels are welcome to participate ing and admission is free. Call 727in the Tampa Y’s Goody Goody 6567. Turkey Gobble 5K sponsored by Goody Goody restaurant, which Honoring Local Military, Law will open in Tampa’s Hyde Park Enforcement, Firefighters, EMS, We also buy Stamp Collections, Village later this month. Teachers, Healthcare Workers Goody Goody is also graciously Proof Sets, Postcards, and Foreign Coins On Saturday, September 10 from providing free breakfast to all partici10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Robert W. pants after the chip-timed race Buy • Sell • Estimates • Appraisals

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August 2016

Page 7

Brandon Edition

Local Teen Releases New Single, Donates Song And Talent To Charity

Second Tampa Bay Coffee And Art Festival To Feature Local Artisan Roasters

By Kathy L. Collins

By Pearlie Mondovics

For 13-year-old the Amalie Arena Riverview resident in Tampa, where and up-and-coming she is scheduled R&B singer-songto take the stage, writer, Estacia, at no cost, persinging is not just a forming her single part of life, but is along with the life. Star Spangled "Music is the Banner. voice of my soul “She is perthat neither words sonally lobbying nor actions can for this event and describe,” Estacia asking people to said. “It's the thing donate for this that runs in my cause,” Neysa veins. Music is basisaid, adding that Local teen Estacia recently released her new cally my life. It's Estacia will also R&B single and is looking forward to donating her time and talent to local charity at the been my life since I participate in the upcoming St. Jude’s Walk/Run to End was young." actual five-mile Childhood Cancer. The young walk and run and artist's love of music, specifically rhythm encourages people to come and join her and blues, began during her father’s team. “Her goal is to sign up 50 people to deployment, as she sang the tunes of her walk or run with her,” Neysa said. favorite artists to lift the spirits of her famiNeysa emphasized that nominated ly. as a Blue Star Military child, Estacia also This love for music and family led to understands the sacrifices of military famithe recent release of her new single, lies during their loved ones’ deployments Speak To Me, produced by local Grammy and has received many thanks for her winner, Lannie Battistini, for the record community service works. label, Hands In Motion, located at 140 W. “With her gifts and experience in Robertson St. in Brandon. charitable work, Estacia wants to conAccording to Estacia's publicist and tribute her talents to help find the cure for agent, Neysa Battistini, the single is curcancer,” Neysa said. rently being considered for a nomination Estacia's album is scheduled to be for the 59th Grammy Awards. completed later this year and released in Aside from the song's release in January 2017. More about Estacia can June, Estacia is looking forward to share be found at www.iamestacia.com, on her time and talent during the upcoming Facebook at www.facebook.com/ St. Jude's Walk/Run to End Childhood IAmEstacia and Twitter at Cancer, on Saturday, September 24 at www.twitter.com/IAmEstacia.

The second Tampa Bay Coffee and Art Festival is set to take place on Saturday, September 10 at The Noise Box in Brandon.

DCNoise is an all volunteer organization that is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of people in the community. DCNoise is hosting its second Tampa Bay Coffee and Art Festival on Saturday, September 10. There will be two sessions. The first is from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., and the second is from 6-9 p.m. The event will be held at The Noise Box located at 1310 John Moore Rd. in Brandon (on the grounds of Christ Community Church). Tickets are between $15 and $32 and include mug, coffee tasting notebook, T-shirt and pen. Tickets can be purchased at www.dcnoise.com. According to Thom Schultz, executive director of DCNoise, “The focus of the Tampa Bay Coffee and Art Festival is on the artisan side of coffee. It is perfect for those who are not very knowledgeable about coffee as well as those who consider themselves aficionados.” Attendees can also opt to upgrade their ticket and attend special brewing and tasting ses-

sions. Local roasters such as Buddy Brew, Brown Bear Coffee Roastery and Birds of a Feather Coffee will participate. Vendors such as Spaddy’s Coffee Truck and more will be on hand. Art is also a big component of this event. Local artists will be on hand to show their art in a festival style setting. There are even plans to have some of the artists do live demonstrations during the event. All of the artists are local, and all of the art is fine art that has been hand crafted. Proceeds from the second Tampa Bay Coffee and Art Festival will benefit the newly formed Bay Area Foundation for the Art (BAFA), a start-up organization that strives to provide scholarships for the fine arts and performing arts. Schultz explained how the event came to fruition. “All of us at DCNoise are into coffee and we like art, so we thought why not combine the two for an event. The first one held in April was a huge success,” said Schultz. For information and to purchase tickets, visit www.dcnoise.com and follow the Tampa Bay Coffee and Art Festival on Facebook.


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Page 8

Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

Blue Mass To

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Shoe Donations Help Local Students Get Back To School

Knights of Columbus wants to show its appreciation as well as praying for first responders as a community by holding a Blue Mass on Wednesday, September 14 at 7 p.m. This is open to all first responders even if they are not Catholic. St. Stephen Catholic Church is located at 5049 Bell Shoals Rd. in Valrico. Call 7432805.

The Crossing Church was at A team of students from FastKicks Academy in Seffner recently competed in the United States Ruskin Elementary and Potter and Chung Do Kwan Association's National Championships. The team took home many first place Clair Mel Elementary Schools earlier medals, as well as the 2016 team championship. this month giving away shoes to the Francesca Segal, is reviewed. This is a Upcoming Happenings At Beth students. All shoes were donated by smart and slyly funny tale of love, tempShalom the congregation, local businesses or tation, confusion, and commitment. Shabbat services Welcome the local churches. The goal for this year Shofar Factory To Be Held In iEngage: Jewish Values and the Sabbath Friday evenings at 7:45 p.m. was to raise 5,000 pairs of shoes. As Brandon Israeli-Palestinian Conflict A Hartman Oneg, nosh and mingle follows. of press date over 4,500 pairs had Institute Lecture & Study Series – Led the Jewish New Year and With Bible and Bagels On Saturday, been raised and have given them to by Rabbi Torop will address and explore the holiday of Rosh Hashanah September 10 at 10 a.m., join in for children right here in Hillsborough Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the the approaching, the Live It Live bible study led by Rabbi Betsy Torop. County, Haiti and Kenya. This event complex meanings of peace in Jewish Workshops bagel breakfast provided. Light was made tradition on Tuesday, September 20 is proud to Jewish Art History – On Sunday, possible from 7-8:30 p.m. Ideals and values present September 11 from 4-6 p.m., Susan from a little that animate different attitudes toward The Shofar Fader will look at the origins of Jewish girl named the conflict will be explored, and how Factory, a Art and how the Second Emma, who values shape their own political these hands-on Commandment played a role in its evo[for her understandings and engage in a new workshop, lution. A $10 donation is requested. All birthday] values-based discourse about Israel. during are welcome. didn’t want Selichot Play Saturday, which parHebrew for Adults A new class any presSeptember 24 at 7 p.m., join in as the ticipants taught by Rudina Tichter on Sunday ents for complex lives of contemporary Jews in will see September 11 through mornings, herself but an original work written and acted by how a October 16 from 9:45–11:15 a.m. Noninstead, congregants is examined. Selichot ram's horn member fee is $25. All are welcome. wanted to precedes the Days of Awe. directly is cured, Page Turners – On Monday, give shoes Congregation Beth Shalom is locatThe Crossing Church volunteers help with shoe collection carefully September 19 from 6-7:30 p.m., join in to children for local students. ed at 706 Bryan Rd. in Brandon. Call measured, for conversation and light dinner as who didn’t 681-6547. sawed, drilled, and polished. The award novel, The Innocents by have any. She connected with The result is a Shofar, the trumpet-like Crossing and Shoes for Tampa Bay instrument used by Jews on Rosh was born. Visit Hashanah and Yom Kippur. When the www.wearecrossing.com/shoes. shofar is complete, participants then learn how to blow it and sound the BCWC’s New Season Of traditional notes. The workshop will Luncheons Begins With Salute To also address the rhyme and reason America behind this custom. Participants will The Brandon Christian Women's have the opportunity to create their Connection will commence its season own Shofar. of luncheons with a theme, music and This workshop is part of a series a spiritual speaker on Monday, of workshops by Live It Live September 12 from 11 a.m.-1 Workshops - a program presented by p.m. Salute to America with a patriotic Chabad Jewish Discovery Center. theme and music will honor veterThere is a $10 fee per person. ans. This is a nondenominational There is a limited supply of horns to luncheon for all ladies and no membe made into Shofars. Reserve yours bership is required. The luncheon will today take place at Bell Shoals Baptist at www.jewishbrandon.com/rsvp or 57 Church in the Special Events Center 1-8100. It will be held at The Chabad at 2102 Bell Shoals Rd. in Brandon. Jewish Discovery Center at 1578 The cost is $15; first time guests only Bloomingdale Ave. Valrico on Sunday, pay $10. Reservations are required by September 18 at 11 a.m. Monday, September 5. Call 740-0098.


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August 2016

Page 9

Brandon Edition

Center Place To Host Masterpieces And Martinis Fundraiser To Benefit Children’s Programs

By Kathy L. Collins

ed to have it every year.” Money raised from the event directly benefits Center Place’s children’s programs and helps fund scholarships so that every child can have the opportunity to unleash their creativity. Rodriguez said, “Center Place has been a pillar of our greater Brandon community for 40 years. We have Create a masterpiece at Center Place’s Masterpieces and brought the arts to the Martinis painting event on Friday, September 16. community by providing Looking for a fun girls’ night out or a theatre, art classes, student scholarships, fun date night? Check out Center Place’s special events, summer camp workupcoming Masterpieces and Martinis on shops, monthly art exhibits and recepFriday, September 16 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. tions. The arts play an important role in Tickets are $40 per person and $70 per the development and fabric of our comcouple. Tickets include dinner, martinis (or munity.” another beverage of your choice) and all Center Place is continually updating of the supplies needed to paint a fantastic and adding to its already busy slate of canvas. This event usually sells out, so events and exhibits. In 2017, Center get your tickets now by calling Center Place will host its first national contempoPlace at 685-8888. rary art competition and exhibition called Patty Sisco of the local favorite, Square’s Off. Artists from all over the local Sketch and Sip, will lead this fun, adult area and beyond are encouraged to enter night out which supports a great local arts and as Rodriguez said, “Think outside the organization, Center Place. Enjoy a box and ‘Square Off’ against fellow artists sumptuous dinner before creating your from all over the nation.” This exciting art masterpiece. In addition to dinner and competition and exhibit will take place painting, there will be a raffle to bid on from Friday, January 20, 2017 through that night. Tuesday, February 28, 2017. The deadCenter Place’s Masterpieces and line to enter is Thursday, September 15. Martinis started in 2008 when Tammy For more information on all of Center Holmberg ran for Honorary Mayor of Place’s programming, including Brandon. According to Lisa Rodriguez, Masterpieces and Martinis and its newest marketing director for Center Place, “The art competition Square’s Off, visit event was so well received that we decid- www.centerplacebrandon.org.

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Page 10

Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

Hillsborough County Residents Urged To Focus On Safety For Local Blue

By Tamas Mondovics

Recent headlines that read, “Law Enforcement Firearms Fatalities Spike 78 Percent in First Half of 2016” or “Ambush Killings of Officers Increase More than 300 Percent” are just a fraction of the disturbing and sad reality of violence against members of law enforcement throughout the country. Cities like San Diego, Baton Rouge and Dallas took center stage as topics of discussion in July, not as summer vacation destinations, but places where officers were killed after being ambushed by a lone gunman. "Each day some 900,000 men and women work to keep our communities safe, and we owe each of them a debt of gratitude,” declared National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF) President and CEO Craig W. Floyd. “All American citizens should be outraged at the number of officers who have been targeted, shot and killed this year.” Shining some light on the reality of violence against police in many communities, NLEOMF issued a new report with preliminary data through July 20, which revealed that 67 law enforcement officers have been killed in the line of duty in 2016—an eight percent increase over the same period last year (62). Key facts included, that firearmsrelated fatalities (32) spiked 78 percent in the first half of this year from 18 during the same period last year. Ambush-style killings of law enforcement officers have increased more than 300 percent from the same period in 2015, as 14 officers were shot and killed

In a show of support and community partnership, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Sgt. Harrison Bashner (left) along with deputies Stephanie Quintana, Jonathan Rosa, Kenzie Basilone and Jeffrey Belcher pose for a photo with HCSO’s #Your Support Matters sign at the Osprey Observer Community Newspapers. Amidst the recent violence against officers across the nation, HCSO has been able to maintain a great community partnership and has received much support throughout the county.

in ambushes, seven were killed stopping a suspicious person and five officers were killed while executing a tactical arrest or high-risk warrants, the reports said. Texas led all states with 13 officer fatalities; followed by Louisiana with seven officer deaths. California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio and Virginia all lost three officers (as of the writing of this article) thus far in 2016. Amidst the increase of such violence, however, many are finding ways to show their support for their local law enforcement agents, police officers and sheriff’s deputies. “Thankfully, the vast majority of

Americans clearly support and appreciate the vital role law enforcement plays in our society,” Floyd said. “Now is the time for all law-abiding citizens to partner with law enforcement in support of safe communities." During a recent speech from the White House press briefing room, President Barack Obama put things in perspective for the nation when he said, “Regardless of motive, the death of these brave officers underscores the dangers that officers face every day.” The President added, “Nothing justifies violence against law enforcement. Attacks against police are attacks against all of us and the rule of law.”

To support deputies locally, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Larry McKinnon encouraged residents to remember some of the basics. “Just a simple thank you from someone in the public has a long lasting, positive impact on our deputies’ morale,” McKinnon said, while emphasizing that over the last couple of decades, the sole function of fighting crime has become only a part of HCSO’s mission. “We have significantly increased our community involvement and interaction,” he said. Poised to begin his fourth term in office, Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee acknowledged the recent increase of violence against officers in some parts of the country, but spoke highly of the countywide support his deputies have been receiving. “We are in a unique situation here in Hillsborough County, because of the tremendous show of public support,” Gee said adding that to earn the support, HCSO as a whole is truly here to serve the community and work hard to do just that. “We all live here and have a vested interest to make our community a safer place to live and work.” With safety and security a common goal, HCSO’s #Your Support Matters logo, which has been making its way around the county, has received much approval, giving testimony to the fact that public safety is and will remain an anchor of community partnership. A copy of the full report, “2016 Mid-Year Law Enforcement Officer Fatalities Report,” is available at http://bit.ly/2aXne67.

August 2016

Page 11

Brandon Edition

Volunteers Needed For Annual Coastal Cleanup

By Tamas Mondovics

Since 1989, KTBB has provided bay-area residents of all ages with opportunities for meaningful service. Tampa Bay Beautification, founded in 1989, and Keep Hillsborough County Beautiful, founded in 1992, merged in 2012 to form KTBB. Last year, more than 16,000 KTBB volunteers took part in 972 community projects throughout Tampa Bay. Damico added that this year the organization has developed a Marine Debris Tracker app that volunteers are now encouraged to download on their Photo courtesy KTBB The Tampa Bay Dragon Boat Club gears up mobile devices available both the to remove litter from the Hillsborough River in Google Play and Apple stores to collect September 2015. data on litter removal. Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful (KTBB) is During last year’s Coastal Clean Up, now recruiting volunteers for the 4,928 volunteers collected 18,837 lbs. of Hillsborough River and Coastal Clean Up, miscellaneous debris (wood, metal, tires, one of the organization's largest annual etc.) from around 86 clean up locations events. that included 1,746 acres of park, 56 Scheduled for Saturday, September acres of wetland, 41 miles of shorelines, 17, the event will be KTBB’s 29th annual nearly 30 miles of roadways and 37 acres clean up, which according to of trails. The total number of trash bags Environmental Program Coordinator, Tom filled amounted to 2,876. Damico, fits the organization’s mission KTBB officials also want to thank volperfectly as it provides environmental unteers for their participation in the July education and volunteer opportunities that 5th, After Fireworks Cleanup that has develop individual responsibility and envi- resulted in the cleanup of more than 10 ronmental stewardship. acres of park land, 4 miles of trails and “This event is an amazing opportunity prevented more than 2,149 lbs. of litter for the community to get a better perand debris from entering into Tampa Bay. spective of what it takes to keep our World Oceans Day, on Saturday, coastlines clean, how important this event June 11 had 512 volunteers remove is, and how we can move forward as it is 25,501 lbs. of marine debris from locapared with education,” Damico said, tions along the Hillsborough River, McKay adding that the six-hour of service comBay, the Garrison and Seddon channels mitment is a great way to develop leader- and Tampa Bay. ship and project coordination skills while For info or the registration link, email meeting new people in the community. Damico at tdamico@keeptbb.org.




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Page 12

Brandon Edition

Water Smart Tots To Host Designer Sunglasses Bingo

Staff Report

Designer Sunglasses Bingo go directly to benefit our survival swim scholarship program, the only one of its kind in the area," said Kari Bahour, founder of Water Smart Tots. Doors open at 6 p.m. with a vendor shopping power hour, appetizers and a cash bar. There will be a silent auction and six door prizes of an Alex and Water Smart Tots is holding a Designer Sunglasses Bingo Ani bracelets donated by on Friday, September 16 from 6-10 p.m. at Riverview Hills Country Club to benefit underprivileged and special needs Operation Lotus. Game children to receive survival swim lessons. play will begin at 7 p.m. Winners get to choose a In Hillsborough County, drowning is pair of his or her sunglasses. the number one cause of accidental Tickets for this event can be purdeath among children ages 1-4 years old. chased for $40 (plus $1 service fee) via The Consumer Product Safety www.WaterSmartTots.org. For a limited Commission estimates each year about time, buy two tickets and save $10. 300 children younger than age 5 drown in thanks to sponsors Special swimming pools and spas and more than Waterscapes Pools & Spas, Premier 3,000 that age go to hospital emergency Pediatrics, Cardel Homes, Southern Care rooms due to non-fatal submersion Post-Tension, Inc., DJ Jake Dela Cruz, injuries. An unknown number of those Doran Real Estate Company, Bright Start hospitalized will suffer permanent disabiliCredit Solutions, Watch Me Swim and the ty, including brain damage. It also reports Osprey Observer. Water Smart Tots also that formal swimming lessons have seeks additional sponsors. Sponsorship proven to reduce pediatric drowning. levels begin at $100. For info, contact Water Smart Tots Designer 810-8106 or info@watersmarttots.com. Sunglasses Bingo will take place on Water Smart Tots is a 501(c)(3) nonFriday September 16 from 6-10 p.m. at profit corporation dedicated to eliminating Riverview Hills Country Club located at drowning by promoting awarepediatric 3943 New River Hills Pkwy. in Valrico. ness through water safety education and The proceeds will benefit financially by providing access to survival swimming underprivileged children or those who skills to infants and young children ages have special needs in Hillsborough months to 6 years who are financially 12 County by providing scholarships for surunderprivileged or who have special vival swim lessons. "We recognize that needs. For more information, visit drowning prevention is a community www.WaterSmartTots.org. responsibility. Funds raised from our

Volume 11, Issue 8

Zero Energy Homes Coming To Waterset By Candace Rotolo other needs. Since the homes are expected to produce as much energy as is spent with average use, homeowners should not have an electric bill. Greenergy Representatives from Greenergy and Newland Communities celebrate the groundbreaking for the new Eco Village at Waterset. Residences will will offer both be powered by solar energy. single story Homebuyers who want to reduce and two-story homes. The four open floor their dependence on traditional energy plans will feature three to four bedrooms sources will have a new and unique with dens, two car garages and range option to choose from at Waterset. from 2,300 sq. ft. to 3,000-sq. ft. Home Homebuilder, Greenergy, broke ground prices are expected to start in the recently on its first net zero energy model $290,000s. home in the master-planned community, “Energy efficiency is becoming an scheduled to open before the year end. important consideration for more and Greenergy will offer 77 high performmore homebuyers,” said Pam Parisi, vice ing net zero electric homes in Waterset president of marketing for Newland that will be entirely powered by solar Communities. “We believe the option of energy. The homes will feature designs net zero electric homes will not only be and high performance elements not com- unique in the Tampa Bay marketplace, monly found in homes throughout Florida. but also appealing to many prospective During construction, many eco-friendly buyers. We are very happy to welcome materials will be utilized to ensure a truly Greenergy as a new builder in Waterset.” eco-healthy home. Rooftop solar panels Greenergy has also launched other will produce the power that is used Net Zero Energy neighborhoods in Port throughout the home to run all aspects of St. Lucie, Kissimmee and Bakersfield, the home. Other features will include air California. ducts located below the attic to improve Newland Communities is the master airflow and reduce costs, and smart developer of the community. Waterset is home automation to turn off lights, pull one of more than 30 communities that the down window shades and regulate cliNORTH AMERICA SEKISUI HOUSE, mate when the homeowners are away. LLC-Newland partnership owns together Natural gas will be used for cooking and in 11 states across the United States.

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August 2016

Page 13

Brandon Edition

Upscale Fashion And Consignment At Julie’s Walk-In Closet

By Jillian Tumlin

Coach, Dooney & Bourke, Michael Kors, Brahmin, Brighton, B Makowski, Fossil, and Tignanello to name a few. Julie’s Walk-In Closet also presents jewelry such as gemstones, sterling, Swarovski, Brighton, Tiffany, Premier Designs, Betsey Johnson, Michael Dawkins, and other popular store brands. “Our jewelry comes Julie’s Walk-In Closet offers designer names such as from all over the world, Coach, Dooney & Bourke, Michael Kors and more. brought by consignors who Julie Pomeroy found the inspiration travel often,” Pomeroy said. “People are for her business in 2009 after noticing the surprised by the fine jewelry they see need for consignment shops that would when they walk in here, and that’s somecater to women looking for more upscale thing that sets us apart from other confashion and accessories in the Brandon shops.” signment area. During this time, she knew about The layout of the store is organized plenty of consignment shops existing in with high-end items are kept at the front, Brandon, but few offered high-end or a main showroom featuring clothing, renowned brands. Ever since, the busiand jewelry and separate handbags ness has worked with over 1,800 conrooms dedicated to home décor, shoes signors and it continues to grow. dresses. Clothing sizes from extraand “Our store is really well-known small to plus size throughout the shop. throughout the Brandon and Tampa area. Employees at Julie’s Walk-In Closet also What we offer can’t be found at the mall,” work to provide customers with education said Pomeroy. on fashion and how to accessorize. Julie’s Walk-In Closet opened with Customers are encouraged to ask staff the goal of educating the local public of help in accessorizing or finding clothfor upscale resale shopping. The boutique ing to fit their body shape and style. offers a variety of clothing, shoes, jewelry, Julie’s Walk-In Closet is located at and handbags. The merchandise varies 720 W. Robertson St. in Brandon. Store from being new to gently used, but all of it are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Monday hours is in great condition as Julie’s Walk-In through Saturday, with Thursday being Closet is selective in its consignment open until 7 p.m. For more information process in order to offer its customers regarding consigning and the store itself, high-quality items. Handbag designer visit julieswalkincloset.com. names featured at the shop include



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Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

The Drawing Point Provides Free Paint Party For Teen Campers At Rotary’s Camp Florida

By Kathy L. Collins

By Tamas Mondovics

Crime Stoppers First Friday’s Fugitives In its continued effort to catching some of the most wanted or most recent fugitives, Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay has released its First Friday’s list of for the month of August. The agency has once again selected five fugitives to highlight this month, including three wanted by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, one by Tampa and one by Plant City Police Department as they are asking for the public's assistance. Crime Stoppers encourages members of the community to assist local law enforcement agencies in the fight against crime by overcoming fear and apathy, which are two key elements that inhibit community involvement, the agency said. The public may contact Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-873-TIPS(8477), report anonymously online at www.crimestopperstb.com or send in a Antelmo mobile tip using our P3 Tips Mobile Ontiveros Application which is a free download for Wanted by the iPhones and Droids. Crime Stoppers must Hillsborough County Sheriff's be contacted first in order to be eligible for a Office for 2nd cash reward. Degree Murder Below is a list of the five fugitives postwith a Firearm & Attempted 2nd ed for the month of August including the Degree Murder reason for their warrant. Lemarcus Antone Ashley Wanted by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office for CarjackingFirearm and two counts of Robbery with a Firearm. Paul Michael Furey White male, 9/17/1986 Wanted by the Tampa Police Department for FTA Robbery.

with a Firearm.

Mario Molina Wanted by the Plant City Police Department for 2nd Degree Murder & Aggravated Battery with Great Bodily Harm. Christian Joseph Torres Sanchez Wanted by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office for Robbery with a Firearm, Kidnapping Inflict Harm and Aggravated Battery with Great Bodily Harm.

me, and I want to give the same experience to others. I feel like I am giving them hope. I can see it in their eyes how they get lost in the art.” Carter utilizes both live painting and video to help show the participants not only what the painting will look like, but just how to create a piece of art. But more importantly, Carter encourages participants to be creative and to use the instruction as a guide. In fact, Carter Diane Carter, the owner of The Drawing Point, led a group of teen campers in a free paint party at Rotary’s said of one teen camper, “Look, Camp Florida. she is stepping out and using purple instead of black.” On July 30, Diane Carter and her Rebecca Freeman, age 16 from team of art coaches from The Drawing Clermont, said of the paint party, “I Point led a paint party for teen campers thought it was really nice and cool. It is a with Faces of Courage at Rotary’s Camp fun camp.” Florida in Brandon. The teens, all of The Drawing Point is located in whom have cancer or a blood illness, Valrico. Carter and her husband, Bob, were spending the weekend at Rotary’s have been in business for seven years. Camp Florida thanks to Faces of They have taught hundreds of children Courage. Faces of Courage is a nonand adults drawing skills on a private profit that offers free camps and events for women, men and children with cancer one-on-one basis. One of their students had a sibling who was stricken with brain and blood illnesses. Rotary’s Camp cancer. Carter provided the girl with free Florida is a 22 acre camp that provides art classes and supplies for several special needs users with clean, safe and months. “She became our first Golden barrier-free camping facilities. Carter donated not only her time and Paint Brush Princess,” said Carter who uses her fun mobile paint parties to fund that of the art coaches, but also all of the the Golden Paint Brush Project. supplies for the campers through her For more information on The Golden Paint Brush Project. Carter, who Drawing Point, Faces of Courage and is a cancer survivor herself said, Rotary’s Camp Florida, visit www.the“Research has shown that art reduces drawingpoint.com; facesofcourage.woranxiety, depression, pain and improves press.com; and www.rotaryscampflorithe quality of life in cancer patients. I am da.org. not an expert, but I know it worked for

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August 2016

Brandon Edition

Page 15

Brandon Shoe Repair Shop Serving Community For 30 Years

By Libby Hopkins

have gone on to graduate from college and with Master’s degrees.” “My father had held various jobs in Korea, but coming to the states, he had no transferable skills without the English language ability,” Sarah said. “After working at a small shoe repair business in Sarasota for a couple of years, my parents had the opportunity to buy a shoe repair business in Brandon.” For her father, it was an opportunity to own his Daniel Chung (far right) of Brandon has kept own business as well as continue with the art of shoe repair alive in the Brandon the creative work he so enjoyed in Korea community for more than 30 years at his as an artist and painter. Daniel continues store, Brandon Shoe Repair. to use his creativity by making and repairShoe repair has become a long lost ing shoes for places like Ringling Circus art. With so many bargain shoe store and Disney’s dancers. chains in the area, it’s easy to just go and “There are several shoe repairs you replace a pair of shoes when they can choose from in Tampa and Brandon become warn or old. Daniel Chung of but my parents' shop hands down is Brandon has kept the art of shoe repair always the best quality repair you can alive in Brandon for more than 30 years. get,” Sarah said. “It's why they have loyal “Our store has a long history in the customers that have been bringing their Brandon area,” Chung said. “Originally it leather goods to them for over 30 years.” was called Yi-Ole-Cobbler and located in They fix anything from shoes and the old Brandon Mall, currently the site of boots to bags, belts, and luggage. Chung Publix supermarket and Burlington Coat can also fix all name-brand shoes and his Factory on Brandon Boulevard. store is an authorized Vibram dealer. Daniel and his wife, Younghee, “We're proud of our long history and love moved to the United States in 1986 from the Brandon community and our cusSouth Korea with their children for the tomers,” Daniel said. “Our family and the same reason most immigrants move to shop have been a fixture for many years this country, for a better life. “They pretty and hopefully, many more to come.” much left everything behind to start anew To learn more about services offered, in Florida; not an easy feat as they didn't contact 684-0272 or visit www.brandonspeak English when they arrived,” said shoerepair.com. Hours of operation are Daniel’s daughter, Sarah Chung. “They've Monday through Friday 9 a.m.–6 p.m. since built a beautiful life in the Brandon Saturday 9 a.m.–2 p.m. It located at 128 community and their children are graduEdwards Ave. in Brandon. ates of Bloomingdale High School who

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Page 16

Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

1914 Plant City High School Community Center Currently Showing Art Around Town By Kathy L. Collins of the 1914 PCHS Community Center and president of the East Hillsborough Historical Society said, “This is Plant City’s richest cultural asset. Our museum and facilities tell the history of the community. It is a way to look back in time.” Located within the building is a rich collection of artifacts and items that will make everyone nostalgic for the For anyone interested in history and seeing artifacts past. You can visit the Pioneer and memorabilia from the past, a visit to the 1914 Plant City High School Community Center is a must. Heritage Museum which holds a collection of school memoraThe 1914 Plant City High School bilia, vintage clothing, antique furniture (PCHS) Community Center is a hidden and agricultural equipment. There is gem in Plant City’s historic downtown even a restored Model T Ford on disdistrict. The 1914 PCHS Community play. Soon, you will also see a restored Center is located at 605 N. Collins St. 1931 Chevy Touring Car. Two rooms in Plant City. The East Hillsborough are dedicated to the history of Hotel Historical Society, which was a driving Plant and government history of Plant force behind the preservation of this City. On the third floor, you can see the historic building, is headquartered here. gowns of many of the Florida The building was built in 1914 for Strawberry Festival Queens. the sum of $40,000. After serving the In addition, the building is home to community as a public school for 58 the Florida Opry which performs from years, the Hillsborough County School October to April in the school’s old audiBoard deeded the building to the City of torium. This is a place perfect for stage Plant City in 1975. The building was performances. listed on the National Register of New to the building is The Historic Places in 1981. Today, it is a Classroom Gallery currently showing historical museum and repository of the Art Around Town Show. This is a artifacts. partnership between the East If you are at all interested in history Hillsborough Historical Society and the and the past, this is a must see. The East Hillsborough Art Guild. Shows will East Hillsborough Historical Society rotate every 60 to 90 days. For more offers tours of the building. To arrange a information and to arrange a tour, call tour, call 757-9226. 757-9226. Shelby Bender, executive director

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August 2016

Brandon Edition

Page 17

Become An Internet Celebrity By Podcasting

By Renee Hobbs

By Nicole Heubusch

Three Ways To Promote A Fun Community When people decide to move to a Homeowners Association (HOA) neighborhood, they are usually hoping to find a community that is fun and welcoming. Looking for a few easy ways to bring your HOA community together? Here are a few simple tips for creating a fun and memorable community within your HOA neighborhood.

Add More Community Gatherings To Your Social Calendar

Hosting fun events for your residents is a great way to get the community together at the pool or clubhouse. Whether you host seasonal events or parties, movie nights, or just picnic gatherings; there are plenty of social activities you can plan out to encourage a strong sense of community. Forming a “Party Planning Committee” is a good way to not only bring a group of residents together to plan fun events, but it will also give them the chance to express their opinions and ideas.

Health Or Exercise Classes

A few communities in the area have started offering group activities like yoga

in the park and cooking classes and that’s a great way to promote health and to bring your community together. Offering yoga, Zumba, tennis competitions or even a running group are good ideas, as well as hosting healthy cooking classes or potlucks.

Don’t Forget About Networking Opportunities

Business professionals love opportunities to connect with other business professionals, especially when they can do it in the comfort of their neighborhood’s clubhouse. Having your HOA sponsor networking events once or twice a month in the evening or morning (try a coffee meeting) will be sure to bring together likeminded business professionals who might never have met, even if they live just one street over. If your HOA has any other ideas or suggestions for promoting a fun and welcoming neighborhood, or is hosting any upcoming events that you would like featured in the Osprey Observer, send them over to nicoleh@ospreyobserver.com.

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tion to help you in self defense and much more, said the host who added he wants to provide a service to people. Liebespach is part of the Florida Podcast Association which meets monthly. Chris Krimitsos leads the group of over 350 members state wide and said, “Most of us started a podcast because we were passionate about something.” Krimitsos is also the executive producer for the upcoming film about podcasting, The Messengers: A Podcast Documentary. The movie is set to release next February and Krimitsos said, “It explains podcasting and the impact on the communities of this medium.” The idea behind the name of the Chris Krimitsos and Gabe Hobbs at the local Florida Podcasters Association. film, Krimitsos said, is that,”Podcasters are messengers Broadcasting day and night across to try to make the world better.” Krimitsos America is as simple as turning on your “It takes you on a journey.” added, computer. Podcast: “A form of digital Gabe Hobbs, local media consultant, media that consists of an episodic series recently attended the third annual of audio, video, digital radio, PDF or ePub Podcast Movement in Chicago. Hobbs files, subscribed to and downloaded autosaid, “To see the enthusiasm, youth and matically, through web syndication or energy in this medium is exciting and streamed online to a computer or mobile means opportunity.” Hobbs continued, device.” Also according to Wikipedia, the “There are 320 thousand podcasts out word is a portmanteau of “iPod” and there; compare that with about three to “broadcast.” In English, that means indifour hundred radio talk shows.” There are viduals are able to broadcast over the podcasts for everything said Hobbs, who internet from their computers, and individexplained the best way to find a program uals are able to listen to the broadcast. is to Google the topic, and add the word Valrico resident Richard Liebespach or go through iTunes. podcast, started his podcast last spring and said, Individuals interested in podcasting “What I share on the show can save a can visit flapod.org or call Krimitsos at life.” Liebespach’s broadcast, Self 727-858-8131. Protection Essentials, includes informa-

Page 18

Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

Become A Girl Scout, Leader’s Club Seeks Members & More…

ships, learn valuable skills, get involved in the Compiled by Michelle Colesanti, michelle@ospreyobserver.com community, earn volunteer hours High School Students Put Cyber Skills and learn what it truly means to be a To The Test at GenCyber Camp leader. Program fees are $45 per year for everywhere Y members, $64 a year for Local high school students recently Campo only members and $80 a year for got a hands-on look at what a career in non-members. RSVP to cybersecurity can provide them. Twenty students, grades 10-12, received an intro- alicia.bentley@tampaymca.org. duction to cybersecurity in July at GenCyber, a free camp offered in partner- Girl Scouts Invite Girls To Get Your Camp Face On ship with the University of South Florida College of Education and the Florida On Sunday, September 18 from 3-6 Center for Cybersecurity. This was the p.m., an event will be held that is only camp in the GenCyber program designed to introduce girls in grades to Khosted in Florida this year. Visit 12th to Girl Scouts and to sign up for the thefc2.org. 2016-2017 year. They will be able to meet troop leaders and other Girl Scouts Teen Led, Teen Driven - Campo from the Caloosa community, which YMCA Leader’s Club Seeks Members serves the Riverview/Brandon area. Girls will learn about campfire building, making The Campo YMCA Leader’s Club is camp crafts and go geo-caching. It will be a program designed for students in held at Girl Scout Camp Dorothy grades 7-12 and is facilitated by a Leader’s Club Advisory. It requires a com- Thomas, located at 16119 Boyette Rd. in Riverview. The mobile Girl Scout store will mitment to attend regular club meetings, also be on property to purchase uniforms. earn volunteer hours and achieve fitness goals. An information meeting will be held ROBOTICON Tampa Bay Set on Monday, August 29 from 7-8:30 p.m. For October 8 at the Campo Y, & 9 At The located at 3414, USF Sun Culbreath Dr. in Dome Valrico. Leaders also participate ROBOTIin special activiCON Tampa ties and Bay 2016 is overnight coming to the events throughUSF Sun Dome out the year. on Saturday, Teens will have October 8 and the opportunity Sunday, to meet new Visit Camp Dorothy Thomas at 16119 Boyette Rd. on October 9 people, build from 10 a.m.–5 Sunday, September 18 from 3-6 p.m. to find out about becoming a Girl Scout. new relationp.m. Over 800

aj westfall

rt the dai tors ilnean is Cool! t..e.wrhem C e r

students will descend at the Sun Dome to take place a little later in the learn while they play, and show guests year. Thunder Bay is also offering Minithis exciting “Sport for the Club again this year. Mini-Club is a twoMind.” ROBOTICON month fall program that Tampa Bay is free to includes two practices a the public. Advance week and three competiregistration is availtion dates. It is a great able at www.Sun way for players between DomeArena.com. the ages of 10 and 14 to The mission of get ready for the upcomROBOTICON Tampa ing club season tryouts Bay is to or for new players to provide FIRST give the sport a try. Robotics teams with Visit www.TBV a high-quality, postAclub.com for more Thunder Bay Volleyball Academy season competitive information and to regisopens registration for the 2016-17 event that delivers ter, or email Thunder season. opportunities for preBay at TBVAclub@ season skill building, networking, and col- gmail.com or call 331-5388. lege and career readiness experiences. ROBOTICON also offers a fun and FishHawk Coyotes Lacrosse Club unique way to increase public awareness Seeks Members of FIRST K-12 education programs. The FishHawk Coyotes Lacrosse Sign up for the SD VIP Pass to Club is looking for boys and girls third receive all the information you need about grade through middle school to particithis event and others pate in and get to know this fast-paced, at www.SunDomeArena.com. Become a high scoring sport. This is a recreationalfan and follow the USF Sun Dome on level club and has its first skills developFacebook ment and intra club sessions this at www.facebook.com/USFSunDomeAre September-October for ages K-12. The na and on Twitter competitive season begins next year and at www.twitter.com/USF_SunDome for runs during the spring playspecial sneak peeks and daily ing teams from Bradenton, updates. Sarasota, South Tampa, New Tampa and Wesley Thunder Bay Volleyball Academy Chapel to name a few. Visit fishClub Tryout And Mini-Club hawkcoyotes.usl.la and “Like” Registration on Facebook (look for the red Thunder Bay Volleyball “C”). If you have children K-2, Academy, Brandon's premier volmake contact via general leyball club, is pleased to email function on the "board announce that registration is now members" tab of the website. open for 2016-17 club season tryIt will keep track of K-2 interest outs for ages 15 through 18. Club tryouts and explore the possibility of developing a for younger players (14 and under) will suitable program.

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August 2016

Local Teen Shares Baseball Victory In Cuba

By Tamas Mondovics

Local baseball stand School Baseball and out and recent Brandon National Player of the High School graduate Week by Varsity Views. Jerry Biller III (MIF, C) Biller is heading to would have had a pretty Central Penn College in routine summer break Summerdale, was it not for his athletic Pennsylvania this fall to talent that led him to reppursue his higher educaresent his community tion and college baseball and his country in a career. competition in Cuba. “Out of all the Biller was one of 14 schools I considered, selected elite 18U playCentral Penn rose to the ers on the U.S. Burn top because they made Baseball Team to me feel at home,” he Local youth baseball talent Jerry Biller compete against said. “I wanted to recently had a chance to represent his some of the best community and country as part of the U.S. find a place that felt Burn Baseball Team, which enjoyed a Cuban baseball athlike home.” recent 5-0 tournament victory in Cuba. letes, while playing To help younger Biller, a Brandon High School graduate, five teams in total athletes hoping to will continue his education and athletic career at Central Penn College in including the Havana follow in his footSummerdale, Pennsylvania. National Team. steps, Biller empha“This tournament was a phenomenal sized the importance of dedication, comonce in a life time opportunity,” Biller said. mitment and encouraged them to never Following four days of competition, give up. the team completed the tourney in Cuba “Things may not always go the way with a 5-0 record. you think they should or want them to go,” Biller is by no means a stranger to he said. “Being an athlete you have to baseball success, and his trip to Cuba is overcome adversity and strive on it. I not his first time to successfully represent could have easily quit, but I didn’t. Now as his community on the field. a three-year varsity letterman I had the In 2013 he was part of Team America opportunity to represent the U.S., playing that competed in the Dominican Republic in Cuba, and I am ready to attend Central Academies, leading his team in stolen Penn College and play college baseball.” bases with Team America winning the Biller’s father, Jerry Biller, summed up tournament. the recent trip and his son’s athletic Biller is currently ranked 8th in the career when he said, “Jerry has a positive United States High School Baseball attitude and is a leader on and off the Players with Max Preps for fielding with field, which coupled with his work ethic, 1.000 FPCT, 209 PO, 26 assists, 235 TC, attitude and dedication, has led him to and was also selected as Defensive where he is today and into his bright Player of the year with Brandon High future ahead. Visit bit.ly/2aHcCZB.



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Page 19

Brandon Edition


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Gigi’s Fabric Shop In Brandon Teaches Students The Art Of Sewing

By Tatiana Ortiz

Learning new In regards to skills and knowing the program, how to apply them Wilson mentioned in any given situashe likes the fact tion could be a that it can be a wonderful benefit. great self-esteem Brandon resident builder. Along with and Owner that, students get Carmen Wilson a chance to from Gigi’s Fabric become an Shop, will host its accountability After School partner toward Sewing Program their peers. For beginning instance, if a Tuesday, beginner comes September 6. in, a more experi“The program enced individual focuses on teachwill buddy up with ing students how them. to develop their “It does not sewing skills, matter what their while working sewing level is together amongst because our goal others,” said is to have them Gigi’s Fabric Shop in Brandon is hosting an After School Sewing Program for ages 8-15. learn from each Wilson. Ages 8-15 can participate in the other,” said Wilson. four-week program, which meets once a Wilson wants the community to week on Tuesdays from 4:15-5:45 p.m. know that Gigi’s Fabric Shop is very The program costs $115 per month and family oriented and its number one goal includes all materials, and each student is to reach out to children. will have their own sewing machine to To register call Gigi’s Fabric Shop at use. During the program, students get 661-9000. The program runs through the the opportunity to work with ongoing month of December and dates for that projects and implement those skills that can be found at they mastered. Students will also learn www.gigisfabricshop.com and www.facehow to color coordinate, thread their own book.com/gigisfabricshop/. It is located sewing machines, read patterns and at 706 W. Lumsden Rd. in Brandon. much more. As far as the project goes, Hours of operation are Monday through students can make a fox and a backFriday 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. and Saturday 10 pack. a.m.- 4 p.m.


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Page 20

Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

Financial Guidances, Opinions On County Parks Sought & More…

of the Truth in Millage, or TRIM, notices Compiled by Michelle Colesanti, michelle@ospreyobserver.com this month letting owners Take Control Of Your Money With know how much their property is worth Free, One-On-One Financial and information about what their taxes Guidance are likely to be. This year, through an Hillsborough County residents can agreement with theCounty Parks & receive free one-on-one financial guid- Recreation, the notices also will tell ance on basic personal finance topics property owners how to take an imporfrom Florida Master Money Mentors. tant survey on parks. Parks & Mentors meet at a community location Recreation officials are in the midst of at a time that fits an individual’s needs. a major survey designed to gather resResidents who meet with a mentor will idents’ input on facilities, programreceive guidance on how to develop a ming, and recreational needs throughspending and savings plan, manage out the county. The information will be debt, build a good credit history, and used for the Parks & Recreation achieve financial goals. The mentor Master Plan. will provide continued guidance for as The survey is available long as needed to help an individual through PlanYourParks.org. In addition master the basics of financial manage- to the TRIM notices, the county is ment. Any Hillsborough County resisending postcards with information dent who is interested in meeting with about the survey to 20,000 housea Florida Master Money Mentor can holds. The county also held a series of call Lisa Leslie at 744meetings throughout 5519, ext. 54143. the county to solicit residents’ opinions on parks.

Opinions Sought On Hillsborough County Parks

The hundreds of thousands of Truth In Milage (TRIM) notices that will arrive in the mailboxes of property owners in coming days will contain more than just information on how much their house and property are worth. The notices will give residents another opportunity to tell Hillsborough County what they want to see in their local park system. The Hillsborough County Property Appraiser will send out nearly 450,000

Now Casting: The TRIP & ADVENTURE Of Your Life

A Major Cable Network is casting for wild and fun personalities to “take the Best Trip of Your Life.” The only catch is that you have to take your parents. But don’t worry - these are not your average places for a family vacation, they are not even family vacations that parents want to go on. These are trips where you rip your parents from the routine of their daily lives and throw them into “Adventure of a Lifetime/“

Are you someone who appears to tennis, education, and fitness. He be between the ages of 18-24; who is recently traveled to Livingstone, an adventurous explorer – not afraid of Zambia in southern Africa to team up anything? Do you love music, festivals, with Jane Kaye-Bailey's Butterfly Tree and having fun? Do you go all out at Charity, along with John Nomad's EDC and other music festivals? Would Nomad Sports Academy to conduct an you get in a cage and swim with the Exhibition and Play-Day Clinic for a sharks? Or how about riding a float at group of 20 orphans from the Mukuni Mardi Gras? Does this sound like fun Village in Livingstone - Southern to you? Province, Zambia. Do you love your parents but get The Butterfly Tree Charity supfrustrated or laugh when “they just ports children in rural villages through an orphan support program, providing don’t get it?” Your parents are totally improved different than health and you and would education facilnever want to ities, safe do the things water and saniyou love. The tation, feeding truth is you programs, and don’t really health centers know your parcontributing to ents and they the fight don’t really against disknow you. eases such as Now, you have a chance Michael-Ray Pallares, One Love Tennis Inc., organ- malaria and ized play for youngsters in Zambia, Africa. HIV/AIDS to take them with you and show them what you love throughout Zambia. The Nomad Sports Academy for in person so they will finally underorphans is designed to motivate, crestand what you’re all about. ate self-discipline, and provide the If this sounds like you and your necessary skills and environment so family, we want to hear from you. that naturally talented vulnerable chilApply now at dren can have an opportunity to train www.ParentTripCasting.com. their bodies and minds in order to Tampa's Michael-Ray Pallares become the leaders of tomorrow. Brings One Love Tennis Inc. To Pallares is planning on organizing an Zambia event locally for the Tampa Bay Inner City Youth in December. He is seeking Founded in 2011 by professional to incorporate with community outtennis player and ITF Expert Coach reach programs in the Brandon, Michael-Ray Pallares, One Love Valrico and Riverview area too. To Tennis Inc. is a non-profit organization designed to reach underprivileged and contact him, email mrpallares3@gmail.com. low income youth through affordable


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August 2016

Brandon Edition

Pearle Vision Of Brandon Helping Students Protect Their Vision This School Year

By Katelyn Massarelli

With summer sale running coming to an end, through the end of it’s a busy time of the year. year for parents, According to teachers, and stuPlumb, polycardents as they prebonate lenses pare to enter yet help protect a another school child's vision by year. As students holding up to advance in their rough-and-tumble education the play or sports work gets harder, without cracking and textbooks or shattering. and amounts of “We insist on reading gets largpolycarbonate er making eye lenses for chilcare a priority for dren's eyeglasses everyone going for safety reaback to school. sons,” Plumb According to said. “The materiPearle Vision of Brandon Owner, Sara Plumb al is lighter than Co-owner of helps customer Jake Despenas find the perfect standard plastic or Pearle Vision of pair of glasses to go back to school. Brandon Sara glass, which Plumb, most parents and educators makes eyeglasses with polycarbonate incorrectly assume that if a child passes a lenses more comfortable to wear and less school screening, then there are no vision likely to slide down your child's nose. And problems. Many school screenings only they block out 99 percent of UV rays, test for distance visual acuity, so a child another important feature built into to with 20/20 vision can still have vision polycarbonate lenses.” problems. The vision skills needed for Pearle Vision of Brandon is owned successful reading and learning are more by Sara and her brother, Michael Plumb. complex. It offers a wide variety of frame styles “Eye problems often mask themfrom brands such as Ray-Ban, Converse, selves as learning disabilities,” Plumb and Nike for children to choose from to said. “Since 80 percent of what you learn make glasses stylish and ready for is through vision, the better you see, the school. better you learn.” Visit www.pearlevision.com. Pearle To make sure your child’s vision is in Vision of Brandon is located at 1929 W. tip-top shape for this school year, Pearle Brandon Blvd in Brandon. Call 681-8880 Vision of Brandon is offering free polycarto book your child’s back to school eye bonate lenses during its back to school care appointment.

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By Tamas Mondovics

HCSO Reminds Motorists Of School Bus Safety Through “Got Brakes?” Campaign To begin 2016-2017 school year, more than 200,000 students made their way back to class, which has clearly made a huge impact on roadways felt by motorists throughout Hillsborough County. The increased rush hour traffic—

... “Relax ke a t l ’l e w it.” care of

Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

thanks to the nearly 1,000 busses on the roadways—and the presence of area students waiting for their bus or make their way to and from school on their own puts an increased responsibility, not only on drivers, but also on parents as well as students. Each year thousands of drivers illegally pass school busses on any given day amounting to millions of possible violations, not to mention putting children at risk. To keep students safe, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) also made arrangements to beef up its presence on the roadways as deputies are scheduled to

be out in force, in patrol cruisers, motorcycles and unmarked vehicles, keeping a close eye on motorists who don't know or don't heed state laws regarding stopping for a school bus. Taking it even further, HCSO is promoting its student safety efforts by means of a video presentation on the its website appropriately called “Got Brakes?” in which motorists are reminded of important rules of when they do and don't have to stop for a school bus and to make sure that the season will continue with the utmost student-safety in mind. "Got Brakes? is the name of our public awareness/enforcement campaign aimed at educating motorists about when they do and don't have to stop for a school bus,” said HCSO Public Information Officer Larry McKinnon.“ The goal is to keep our children safe through education and enforcement. This public awareness video will help you understand Florida law.” For more information on Florida's school bus laws, visit floridaschoolbussafety.gov. The Got Brakes? video can be found on the Sheriff's Office website at www.hcso.tampa.fl.us.

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Brandon Edition

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Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8


August 2016

Volume 11, Issue 8

Ph: 657-2418

InThis Section

CHALKLINES........................................PG 28 GIVEAWAY...........................................PG 33 NEW SOUTH WINDOWS.....................PG 34 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT...................PG 37 SPORTS CONNECTION..................PGS 38‐39 free personal development events, partner listing on website, and community membership among a new class of workers who are driven to organize their professional lives around continuous personal growth, meaningful relationships, and the service of something greater than themselves. For more information, visit www.igscommunity.com or call Carlton at 924-4679.

Brandon Auto Services, Inc. & Salvage Holds Ribbon Cutting Owners Steve Holland and Ken Anderson of Brandon Auto Services, Inc. & Salvage recently celebrated 45 years by holding a ribbon cutting. Brandon Auto Service sells parts to consumers and will do auto repairs on any car or truck. It has recently expanded and opened a second location in Plant City. It welcomes Insurance claims and gives a life-time warranty on services. Brandon Auto Service is located at 3159 S.R. 60 E. in Valrico. Call 689-8131 or visit www.brandonauto.com.

Wedding Expo At Uncle Mike’s Blake Hall

A ribbon cutting was recently held by the Brandon Chamber of Commerce to celebrate Brandon Auto Services, Inc. & Salvage’s 45 years in business.

522 Oakfield Will Be Home To CoWork Landing In September

The Intentional Growth A Wedding Expo will be held on Strategies journey began in January by Friday, September 9 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. growing a community of at Uncle Mike’s Blake Hall, located at 120 entrepreneurs and now, Owner Shannon S.R. 60 in Plant Carlton is excited City. Tickets to share that cost $5 (BOGO CoWork Landing for Brides). (shared workCome and space) will be enjoy Leena’s ready to open for Chocolate business in Fountain, Hors September. Doeuvres, What is cocktails and offered: Affordable, music. Blake professional workHall is perfect space solution for for weddings work-from-home and parties with professionals and A Wedding Expo will be held Friday, September 9 educational oppor8,800 sq. ft., it at Uncle Mike’s Blake Hall in Plant City. holds up to 290 tunities for entreguests. Vendors are still needed for this preneurial endeavors. Quiet, professional event and are welcome. Call 644-6888 or work and meeting spaces for one-on-one visit umcatering.com. and small groups will be available.

Primary Medical Clinic Relocates

Dr. Anita Patel of Primary Medical Clinic and staff will be relocating to 3427 Brook Crossing Dr. in Brandon this September. The new building will help offer more resources for patients in terms of health education and teaching with more accessible parking. In addition, Dr. Patel welcomes Kristen Cooley ARNP to her practice. Call 654-5331; fax 6545336 or visit www.primarymedicalclinic.com.

Who it will help: small business owners, freelancers, remote workers and entrepreneurs who want a place to go and do work during their day. Professionals who feel more creative, more productive and less isolated. The co-working space offers a place where the independent worker can come sit for a couple of hours and get work done, attend a personal development or networking Brandon SWAT function, hold a meeting Networking Woman or conference or collabo- Dr. Anita Patel of Primary Medical Of The Month Clinic graduated from Chestnut rate with other members. Every month a local Hill family medicine hospital affiliThe majority only work ated with University of professional business Pennsylvania. from a co-working space woman from each of the 20 percent of their work six chapters of SWAT (Successful week. (deskmag.com) Women Aligning Together) is honored for Perks of membership: Internet, mail, conference room, quiet room for Continued on Next Page small meetings, break room with coffee,

Page 26

Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

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

By Michelle Colesanti

their dedication and hard work, positive strong connection within this market. She spirit and their willingness to enhance has been a member of the Brandon and themselves and their career. Charlotte South Tampa Chambers of Commerce, Clark, branch managLeadership er for American Westshore, and has Momentum Bank in volunteered for many Sun City Center and charities, including the vice president of the Ronald McDonald Brandon SWAT had House, Salvation the pleasure of preArmy, Metropolitan senting this month's Ministries, E.C.H.O., "Woman of the and the Boys and Month" award to Girls Club. Beverly Walker, owner First Citrus Bank of Pinot's Palette in has five branches Brandon. Walker is a across Hillsborough champion entrepreCounty, including neur, dedicated to her offices in Brandon, faith, family and giving Carrollwood, Citrus back to the Brandon Park, Kennedy community. She has a Boulevard, and South Owner of Pinot’s Palette in Brandon Tampa. Visit heart for serving othBeverly Walker (left) was awarded ers and is an avid runwww.firstcitrus.com. Woman of the Month from SWAT. ner. Beverly, along with her husband, Dennis, have been Pure Barre Brandon Opens very involved, through Pinot's Palette, According to Owner Shannon supporting other Brandon area businessO’Brien Kerney, Pure Barre is the es and foundations helping to raise funds fastest, most effective, yet safest way to to support the community. Beverly and change your body. In just 55 minutes, Dennis have been business owners in you will achieve a full-body workout the Brandon community for over 27 concentrating on the areas women years. For more on Pinot's Palette, struggle with the most: hips, thighs, visit www.pinotspalette.com. For more seat, abdominals and arms. The Pure about SWAT Networking, visit www.swatBarre technique is low-impact, protectnetworking.com. ing your joints by avoiding any bouncing or jumping. Each First Citrus Bank strength section of the workout Announces Promotion is followed by a stretching secOf Lisa Pitts tion in order to create long, First Citrus Bank is lean muscles without bulk. The pleased to announce the technique works to defy gravity promotion of Brandon by tapering everything in and resident Lisa Pitts to lifting it up. assistant vice president The concentration involved and branch manager. while taking Pure Barre allows With outstanding skills in you to block “life” out for the customer service and hour, creating the mental beneBrandon resident Lisa excellent managerial Pitts was promoted to fits similarly obtained by the skills, Pitts is a wonderful assistant vice president practice of yoga or meditation; and branch manger of a transformed body and a clear choice to fill this role. First Citrus Bank. Living in Brandon for head in just one hour. over 30 years, Pitts has deep roots and a Pure Barre Brandon will be open

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Brandon Honda Hires Jeremiah Soltis As Finance Manager

Sam Raabe is pleased to announce that Jeremiah Soltis has been hired as

a finance manager at Brandon Honda, a Morgan Auto Group dealership. The finance and insurance management position involves helping clients choose between auto financing and insurance options when buying or leasing a new or used car. Originally from Wyoming, Soltis started working in an automobile dealership in Rock Springs when he was 16 years old. He now has 15 years of experience in automobile dealerships in Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, and Florida primarily in sales and finance positions. Brandon Honda is a division of Morgan Auto Group and is located at 9209 E. Adamo Dr. in Tampa, one mile west of I-75. It is an award-winning, Green-Star Certified automobile service facility and works proactively to protect the environment. Call 664-1234 or visit www.BrandonHonda.com.

August 2016

Brandon Edition

Page 27

Page 28

Brandon Edition

Volume 11, Issue 8

Photos and story by Tamas Mondovics

Hillsborough County Public Schools 2016-2017 Calendar & New Teacher Orientation 2016-2017 School Calendar

Hillsborough County Public Schools began welcoming more than 200,000 students back to the district August 10. Cutting the summer break a bit shorter, the district’s approved new calendar has shifted the school year up two weeks. View the full calendar online at www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/calendar/.

New Teacher Orientation

Led by Superintendent Jeff Eakins, school board members, and district staff, more than 600 new teachers were welcomed to Hillsborough County Public Schools during the annual New Teacher Orientation held last month at Armwood High School. This year’s four-day orientation emphasized a fresh look, in response to the needs of district teachers as well as their feedback from previous years. The first two days aimed at familiarizing teachers with the district’s mission, vision, and goals through a comprehensive induction model. Days three and four included CHAMPS/Discipline in the Secondary Classroom training to assist teachers

with establishing classroom culture during the first few weeks of school. Experienced teachers were invited to register for various courses offered during day three and four at the district’s main training facility. For more information about Hillsborough County Public Schools, visit www.sdhc.k12.fl.us.

Valrico Boy Counts To A Million, Earns Mathematics Award

Five-year-old Valrico boy, Cade William Weart, is starting Kindergarten this fall and while according to his parents he is no different from his classmates and friends, there is one thing in which he stands out; his love of numbers. “Cade has been obsessed with numbers since the age of four,” said his father, Jeremy Weart. To show his love and zeal for mathematics, Cade has decided that he wanted to count to one million, a goal, which with the help and support of his parents took him about seven months to accomplish. Cade was recently recognized for accomplishing his goal with a certificate of excellence and a mathematics award at the Apostles Lutheran

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preschool where he attended VPK the end of counting as Cade is now last season. ready for the next level in the world Jeremy of numbers. said that “He wants Cade started to master his out slow and multiplication counted to tables,” 100, followed Jeremy said, by wanting to adding that count to his son 1,000. demands they “I thought cover at least he was done one multiplibut he cation table begged me before he help him goes to sleep reach 1 mileach night. “I lion,” Jeremy kept him from said. “I didn't division for think we the longest would get time but he done, but we insisted on finally did. We learning how counted by to do it, so I Joined by his teachers Sandy Sorenson and Mrs. ones to get mix it up and Nancy at Apostles Lutheran preschool Valrico resident Cade William Wreat, 5, holds his to 1,000. try and make Then I decid- mathematics award while recognized for reaching his it really fun goals of counting to one million. ed we needfor him.” ed to count by a thousand to get to Now father and son take about one million or it would take us two 30 minutes a day on average to pracyears. tice and to sharpen Cade’s math Reaching his goal does not mean skills.

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Page 29

Brandon Edition

An Evening With Unspoken At Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church

Leadership Brandon Class 2016 Makes Dreams Come True For Foster Children

Dominican Republic. Mattson had been struggling with drug and alcohol addiction for years, and decided to go on a mission trip to rebuild his relationship with God. It was there in the Dominican Republic where Mattson’s eyes were opened Tickets are now on sale for national recording Christian and he came to know Christ band Unspoken, who will perform at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal Church on Friday, September 9. in a powerful way. Mattson reflected on this Tickets are now on sale for national recording Christian band Unspoken when season of growth on the group’s web they perform at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal page, “The more you work on something Church at 604 N. Valrico Rd. in Valrico on and devote yourself to a craft, I think the Friday, September 9. The concert will also better you become at it, especially as you are surrounding yourself with people who feature opening artist Cole Jennette. are good at it.” Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the Jennette is a local Christian music concert begins at 7 p.m. Unspoken has recording artist who has recorded an had two top-five singles on the Christian album in Nashville, and currently serves music charts and is an up-and-coming as worship leader at Riverside Church in group in the Christian music industry. They recently released a new album titled Ft. Myers. The proceeds will be split between Follow Through, and this concert is your Soldiers for Faith chance to hear favorites and brand new (www.soldiersforfaith.com) and Holy music. Innocents', where the proceeds will go Rector, Fr. Douglas Scharf said, toward the mission and ministry of the "Hosting this concert is a great opportunichurch. ty for people in our community to hear Want to meet Unspoken? A VIP ticksome really good music with a positive, et experience is $30 and gets you encouraging message by a well known reserved first- or second-row seating at Christian band. Usually bands of this calthe concert, a free CD, and a meet-andiber only play in larger venues, so this greet with the band following the concert. concert will be a unique experience, and Holy Innocents’ is extremely excited to be General admission tickets are also available at $20 for ages 17 and older. For able to host this event.” ages 16 and under, it is $10 (with student Unspoken first came together after ID). Visit www.eveningwithunspoken.com leader singer Chad Mattson met guitarist to purchase tickets. Mike Gomez on a mission trip in the

for the older children. They are often taken out of their homes in the middle of the night and have nothing of their own. We thought that they could create art work for their walls, and it will be something that belongs to them.” Mary Berg, executive director of A Kid’s Place said, “If it was not for the community, we The Leadership Brandon Class 2016 has been busy could not do this for the children making dreams come true this year for the children because we do not have the who live at A Kid’s Place in Brandon. funds.” Berg would encourage Each year, members of the commuothers, including individuals and organizanity, including representatives from local tions, to donate an outing for the children. businesses and non-profit organizations, “If we can provide an offsite activity where participate in Leadership Brandon, a com- they can experience something, it is great munity leadership development program for them. We can provide transportation of the Greater Brandon Chamber of and youth counselors to accompany the Commerce. The 2016 Leadership children,” said Berg. Brandon Class is comprised of a dynamic The Dream Team 2016 has provided and energetic group of individuals. tickets to Novemberfest, movies and Part of what each Leadership bowling. When the children went to the Brandon Class does is raise money for a Florida Strawberry Festival, they were local non-profit. This year’s Leadership escorted by the Hillsborough County Brandon Class, known as the Dream Sheriff’s Office. Team 2016, selected A Kid’s Place. The Leadership Brandon Class 2016 According to Suzy Watts, a member of is holding a Casino Night Party on Friday, the Dream Team 2016, “We considered September 16 from 6:30-11 p.m. at The many charities. A Kid’s Place tugged at Regent located at 6437 Watson Rd. in our hearts. We liked the idea of helping Riverview. Attendees are asked to bring kids because they are our future, our new shoes (all sizes for both boys and family, and we take care of family.” girls) for the children at A Kid’s Place. If On July 15 Beverly Walker, owner of you bring new shoes, you will receive Pinot’s Palette in Brandon, opened her three tickets for the Chest of Cheer studio so that some of the older children Raffle. For more on Leadership Brandon who live at A Kid’s Place could come and Class, A Kid’s Place and Pinot’s Palette, create a piece of art just for them. Watts visit Brandonchamber.com, akidexplained, “We wanted to do something splacetb.org and pinotspalette.com.

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Page 30

Volume 11, Issue 8

Brandon Edition

Secondhand Savvys Celebrates 10 Years Of Success By Nicole Schoen

Secondhand Savvys coowner team and mother daughter duo Shelbi Weeks (left) and Jennifer Estrada (right) celebrate 10 years in business

Secondhand shopping has become increasingly popular among the thrifty-minded consumers, offering an affordable alternative to malls. Local store Secondhand Savvys recently celebrated 10 years in business re-selling clothes and filling closets with gently used, name brand, designer clothing for men and women. Established in July 2006, Bloomingdale resident and Owner Jennifer Estrada originally began with half the shopping space of the current store, located at 210 S. Kings Ave., Ste. D in the plaza with the original Beef O’Brady’s. After a successful first year, she expanded the shop to its current size of roughly 2,500 sq. ft. “Keeping an open mind and accepting items for a wide variety of shoppers is what I feel has made us successful. We work hard as a team to constantly change displays, mannequins, wall decor, etc. for customers to adapt to upon their weekly arrival,” said Co-Owner and daughter of Estrada, Shelbi Weeks, who helps run the family-owned shop. Secondhand Savvys is different from the average consignment store as it credits money to consigner’s accounts after

an item is purchased for half the price the item was sold at with no appointment necessary. The consigner can choose to get a check for the accrued funds or use the money toward an instore purchase. After an item sits on the racks for over 60 days, the consigner has the option to pick up their items, or the shop will donate the items to either Emergency Care Help Organization or Hospice. “We currently have about 3,000 active consignors dropping off every single day, seven days a week. We receive on average 30 drop offs a day. We do not have a minimum or maximum drop off requirement therefore, one consignor can drop off 25 trash bags consisting of shoes, purses, jewelry, and clothing, and another may only drop off a small grocery bag of sunglasses and belts. After sorting through the items, we accept and put on the floor 6,000 to 8,000 pieces per month,” said Weeks. The shop sells designer clothing, swimwear, shoes, purses, accessories, formal dresses, household and beauty items, and more. Sizes range from 00 to plus sized items. Every two to three months it holds its famous Fill-A-Bag sale, usually on a Saturday morning, where shoppers can fill a single bag full from specific bins and only pay $10 for the entire bag. “I love the shabby chic vibe, the people, even the music is great. The deals are phenomenal, that goes without saying, but I know what I’m getting is top quality because of how selective and caring the owners are,” said Karen Hogan of Valrico. “I have been shopping at Savvys for six years and can’t bear to drive down Kings without making a quick pit stop.” For more information, visit www.consignsavvys.com or call 643-6020. Follow them on Instagram (@secondhandsavvys) or on Facebook to see new items that come in the shop and upcoming events.

Wigs For Kids Provides Hair To Children In Need Free Of Charge

By Renee Hobbs

If you can add 12 LGC Hair inches to your hair Restoration of length, you can donate Brandon, Craig it to one of over two miladded, “It can give lion hair loss sufferers in people the self conthe United States. Wigs fidence they need.” For Kids (WFK) is a LGC is an national nonprofit group ambassador salon that provides wigs to for WFK, meaning children, with no cost to Craig can take them or their parents. donations year The value of each wig round and is able hair replacement is to help recipients about $1,800 and the through the whole children who receive wig process, “from them can suffer from start to finmedical conditions such ish,” she as chemotherapy, radiasaid. WFK tion or Alopecia (born provides chilNicole Martocchio, 11, without hair). dren with donated her Jeffrey Paul foundeverything hair to Wigs for ed this organization they need Kids, helping other children receive hair. over 30 years ago, said Craig, who when a young family added, “I am member was diagnosed with Leukemia. always here for them.” Craig said the Paul said, “I promised her that she would beginning of the school year brings in a have hair and when you make a promise lot of people and continued, “We’re going to a kid, you keep it.” to be slammed.” There are a few ways to participate. Craig had misty eyes as she talked You can donate hair to an ambassador about one of her clients, a little boy, “Who salon, which will ship the contents directly just wanted hair.” It was very emotional to WFK. You can also sponsor a child or for the family said Craig, who added, donate financially to the group. There are “Parents already have enough stress restrictions if you’re thinking about giving without adding this.” Craig goes on to say away your hair, including you must have that when he emerged with hair, “It was at least 12 inches of hair in a pony tail, beautiful.” The only listed ambassador and permed or color treated hair will not salon in this area is LGC and you can work. reach Craig at 990-9234. If you are inter“Having hair can change a person’s ested in being a recipient or in finding out life,” said stylist Laura Craig. The owner of more about WFK, visit wigsforkids.org.

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August 2016

Brandon Edition

Page 31

LifeCare Welcomes New Executive Director Ridge Top Exteriors Provides Window, By Bonnie Mentel

Kristen Mosley ultrasound,” Mosley has been on staff with said. LifeCare as the operThe ministry has ations director for the a vision for a future past four years. She housing ministry withhas just recently tranin the community. sitioned to take over Mosley said that a lot the role of executive of the women that director, replacing they work with are Karen Brooks, who often stuck in held the position for unhealthy situations 22 years. with their boyfriend or Karen Brooks (center) with “I’ve been so family, because they new Executive Director Kristen Mosley, and Jessica Rickenbach, devel- don’t have anywhere thankful to work opment director. under her leadership. to go. My plan, as the executive director, is to “God placed a dream in Karen’s continue building upon what she and heart many years ago for a future housCookie Gray, who founded the ministry, ing ministry. We’re continuing to pray for have already started,” said Mosley. that, for God’s timing and provision,” LifeCare has two centers in the com- Mosley said. munity, called Choices Women Centers, LifeCare’s biggest event is their in Brandon and Ruskin. The name was fundraising gala. This year’s gala will take chosen to reach abortion-minded women place on Thursday, October 20 at the in the community. At the centers, the staff Hilton Tampa Downtown. They expect and trained LifeCoaches work to educate 500-600 guests to attend the semi-formal clients each time a pregnancy test is dinner and program to celebrate the past administered. They cover abortion educa- year’s ministry and future vision of tion, adoption education, and parenting LifeCare. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the education. dinner and program will run from 6:30-9 “In May, we administered 50 pregp.m. nancy tests. Out of those, 30 of those Former Planned Parenthood director women were what we call ‘abortion-mind- and pro-life activist, Abby Johnson, will be ed’ or ‘vulnerable’ women. Twenty-six of the featured speaker. them actually made decisions for life. “We’re excited to have her come We’re so thankful that they’re coming speak at our gala. We’re anticipating a lot here first. That’s our passionate goal, to of new partners for the ministry through be a woman’s first choice when she’s that,” Mosley said. faced with an unplanned pregnancy. We The event is free to the public with an want to speak truth and life to her, and RSVP. Visit www.lifecarenetwork.net or show her life in the womb through an call 654-0491.

Door Services To Homeowners

By Tatiana Ortiz

Ridge Top Exteriors installs new and replacement home windows and door manufacturers. It offers high quality materials to protect residence and their family from weather and theft. Their brand of EnergyMax consists of energy windows that includes single hung, double-hung and much more. Windows come in multiple colors, styles and configurations. Along with that, homeowners can choose from several unique styles of doors. “Anything that the client wants, we can provide that An inside look of window displays at Ridge Top Exteriors. for them,” said Gebhart. At times, some homeowners might In regards to a warranty on windows, need to change a window or a door in Ridge Top Exteriors brought in a private their home, which could be costly. Ridge label. The private label provides five Top Exteriors in Tampa gives homeowndiverse styles of windows and it can suit ers the option to participate in their dollar anyone’s budget. The warranty is lifetime down program. and transferrable. “The client gives them a dollar down. A 10 percent discount can be When the project gets completed to 100 received for current and former military percent of their satisfaction, the client will personal, state and community law owe a balance,” said Ridge Top Exteriors enforcement and senior citizens with a Owner Larry Gebhart. valid identification. Ridge Top Exteriors opened in March “Overall, we want the community to of this year. This 4,900 sq. ft. building know that we provide a great product for became the first store in Florida. It is their them with our honest and fair prices,” said sixth location within 14 years. Ridge Top Gebhart. Exteriors began its journey in Madison, For more information about Ridge Wisconsin. Since then, the business Top Exteriors, visit www.ridgetopexteriorsexpanded to other locations such as fl.com or visit them on Facebook. It is Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Las Cruces, New located at 10101 E. Adamo Dr. in Tampa. Mexico; St. Louis, Missouri; and Atlanta, Hours of operation are Monday through Georgia. Seven employees work at the Saturday 7 a.m.- 5 p.m. Other times by Tampa location. appointments. Call 616-1227.

Page 32

Brandon Edition

Waterscapes Pools & Spas Making Backyard Dreams Come True

By Nicole Heubusch

Springs, Waterscapes services residents in Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, Lee and Collier counties. John Collier, vice president of Waterscapes, is a resident of Apollo Beach and has built dozens of pools in the Hillsborough area. When asked what his favorite part of being a pool builder is, he replied, “I enjoy seeing the transformation of taking an empty piece of land and creating a backyard oasis. For my cusJohn Collier, vice president of Waterscapes Pools & Spas. tomers, it’s like providing It's summertime in Florida, and if you them with their own private paradise.” don't have a pool, you're probably wishing Waterscapes Pools & Spas offers an you did. Neal Communities, an award abundance of pool styles to choose from. winning local home builder with over 40 Their creative design staff will help you years of experience, created a pool comselect from popular pool styles such as pany that will help you take your vision infinity edge, beach entry and from a variand design the pool of your dreams. This ety of custom features like waterfalls, division of Neal, Waterscapes Pools & overflowing spas and even a fire feature. Spas, is one of the area's largest pool With periodic promotions throughout builders of residential and commercial the year, it’s always a good time to call pools in Florida. Waterscapes and schedule a personal Waterscapes Pools & Spas is family consultation. Their website showcases owned and operated and takes pride in many examples of beautiful designs that providing their clients with the same level will help inspire the possibilities of building of customer service that Neal your own pool for friends and family to Communities is renowned for. With 16 enjoy all year long. people on staff, they are efficiently able to Waterscapes Pools & Spas is located design, build and coordinate as a team to at 8141 Lakewood Main St., Ste. 209A in make sure the process of creating your Lakewood Ranch. Learn more today by dream pool is as easy as possible. With visiting waterscapespools.com or calling offices in Lakewood Ranch and Bonita 252-2716.

Volume 11, Issue 8

August 2016

Brandon Edition

Primrose School Of Bloomingdale Celebrates Fifth Anniversary

By Katelyn Massarelli

Since opening Assistant in August of 2011, Director at Primrose School of Primrose School of Bloomingdale, Bloomingdale has brought a unique Jennifer Carroll, has experienced all childcare experithat Primrose ence to families School of within the commuBloomingdale can nity. Their vision to offer to children give a child academic and life The Primrose School of Bloomingdale team through her own personal experiskills that they can (from left), Jennifer Carroll, Sonya Boyette, Debra Temple, Ami Gohi, and Angela Cleek ence. Whether it utilize during and celebrate the school’s fifth anniversary. be setting the table after moving on with no one telling them to or having a from Primrose is what the school has structured schedule, Carroll’s two children used to make its students successful are a prime example of what Primrose when entering elementary school. Schools can do. “Celebrating our fifth anniversary is a “[My children] are developing responbig deal for us,” the owner of Primrose sibility and life skills they can use outside School of Bloomingdale Ami Gohil said. of the classroom,” Carroll said. “I’m no “Establishing the preschool in the area longer as worried about them starting shows our ability to build our reputation Kindergarten.” and continue to grow.” With the children at the school their Primrose Schools can be found nationwide in 28 states and are dedicated number one priority, Primrose School of Bloomingdale also makes their teachers to setting the path for learning and life for children through their education and child- an important part of a child’s development. According to Education and care environment. Having worked as a Curriculum Manager at Primrose School teacher previously at Primrose School of of Bloomingdale, Sonya Boyette, the Westchase, Gohil opened the school is committed to providing the supBloomingdale school with her husband. port needed to ensure students succeed. According to Gohil, childcare is most “A child spends a large portion of rewarding and having children of her their day here, so it’s important they feel own, she decided to open a Primrose bonded, loved and cared for,” Boyette School within Bloomingdale in pursuit of said. For more on Primrose of her passion. Since then, she has been dedicated to creating an environment that Bloomingdale, contact 438-5980, info@primrosebloomingdale.com, or visit allows students to learn and grow www.PrimroseBloomingdale.com. throughout their time at the preschool.

Page 33


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Name: Address: Phone: Email: Community: Enter to win by email at contest@ospreyobserver.com, fax to 657-4469 or mail to 918 Lithia Pinecrest Rd., Brandon, FL 33511.

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Page 34

Brandon Edition

Locally-Owned And Built New South Windows Guaranteed For Life

By Michelle Caceres

New South Window Solutions President and Owner Earl Rahn said the company’s windows are made in Florida for Florida homes by Florida workers.

Brandon resident Assosouvale Pili’s home was invaded with the sounds of the outside world. The sounds of birds chirping, dogs barking and lawnmowers broke the solitude that he was looking for in his home. “I had old single pane windows and every little noise outside could be heard,” he said. Pili decided to replace his windows, so he researched companies and chose to hire New South Window Solutions. “From the salesperson to the installer, everyone was so professional and confident in their work,” said Pili. He wasn’t the only one to think so. When the county inspector came to make sure the work was done correctly, he was impressed with the quality windows. Now, with his new vinyl-frame, double pane windows installed, Pili said the birds, dogs and lawnmowers are still making noise but he doesn’t hear it. New South Window Solutions

Owners Dan and Deb Ochstein and Earl and Amy Rahn said that is exactly why they left successful careers at one of the country’s largest window manufacturing companies in Ohio to open New South Window Solutions in Florida in 2010. “We came here to bring energy-efficient windows to the state,” said company President Earl. “Single pane aluminum windows, which used to be so popular here in home construction, no longer meet current energy codes.” In addition to dramatically cutting down on outside noise, New South Window Solutions’ windows save money on energy bills year round, add value to homes, extend the life of air conditioning and heating units, add curb appeal, improve security and protect carpet and furniture from fading due to UV damage. Earl said New South Window Solutions, located at 4901 Oak Fair Blvd. in Tampa is not a window store. As a factory-direct company, custom windows are made in their factories for each individual customer, put on the back of their trucks and driven to customers’ driveways. “We offer an unconditional lifetime warranty on our windows,” said Marketing Director Amy. “It’s the last window you’ll ever need.” Osprey Observer readers that mention this article will receive 40 percent off the purchase and installation of three or more replacement windows. New South Window’s factory showroom is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday 12 Noon–4 p.m. Visit www.newsouthwindow.com or call 793-7948.

Volume 11, Issue 8

Cosmetic Dermatology Expert Joins Hightower Dermatology

By Amy Schechter

Sometimes walking “I was born and raised into a doctor’s office draws in Florida,” she shares. “I us back to the days when know how the harsh sun we were children, apprecan be overwhelming. hensively awaiting the next Every age, though, is really vaccination. As adults, we beautiful. Sometimes we know more of what to all need a little pick-meexpect, but healthcare can up.” seem complex and dauntShe is committed to ing nonetheless. This is educating and treating all not the case at Hightower of her patients as individuDermatology, whose pasals, so she can help them sionate commitment to reach their goals of health quality care is evident the and happiness. Her medmoment their friendly staff ical assistant, Lindsey greets patients at the door. Daniels, attests to her Nurse Practitioner Donna Moody was recently added to patience. Their mission is also the team at Hightower unmistakable when clients “Donna is the best. Dermatology. meet with Nurse She looks at everybody Practitioner Donna Moody, the newest individually and takes her time, so they member of Dr. Kortney D. Hightower’s feel listened to. She’s really focused on team. In Sun City for a little over a year, personalized care,” Daniels said. Moody widens the array of dermatology Whether one is looking for preventaand skincare services the practice offers. tive care or has a few problem areas, Already an expert in general dermatology, Moody invites the community to consult dermatologic surgery, and Mohs surgery, with her for their skincare needs and the single most effective technique for prides herself on helping others achieve removing cancerous tissue, Dr. Hightower subtle, natural looks. She is well versed in joined with Moody who brings her extenBotox and Dysport, a newer and often sive experience in cosmetic dermatology. less expensive way to combat fine lines After raising a family, Moody returned and wrinkles. to school at the University of South The practice accepts most major Florida where she found her interests insurances as well as Care Credit. For piqued by dermatology, especially as it more information, to request an appointrelates to dealing with oncology, and ment, and to check out their specials, visit practiced for just over 10 years in the www.hightowerdermatology.com or call Brandon area. Perhaps just as important the office at 634-1484. Hightower as knowing you’re in competent hands is Dermatology is located at 957 E. Del the feeling of warmth you get when you Webb Blvd., Ste 101 in Sun City Center. listen to Moody speak.

August 2016

Brandon Edition

Offer Expires 9/7/2016

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Volume 11, Issue 8

August 2016

Brandon Edition

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With Arts & Entertainment Editor Kathy L. Collins

VSA Florida Celebrates Anniversary Of Americans With Disabilities Act With Art Show VSA Florida, Higginbotham were in the statewide attendance. organization on arts Higginbotham was the and disabilities, keynote speaker for the recently held an art event. show celebrating Johnson has been the 26th painting with acrylic Anniversary of the since she was nine Americans with years old. For Johnson, Disabilities Act who has suffered with (ADA). Artists of all Reflex Sympathetic abilities were asked Dystrophy (RSD) for the to submit artwork past 11 years, painting is Romona Johnson of Brandon was just a way to her deal with which exemplified one of 16 artists whose work was the theme of “ADA: the stress and pain entered into a recent VSA Art Show. Designing A Better caused by the chronic Tomorrow.” Artists could present a literal disease that results in her disability. or conceptual interpretation. Johnson said, “Painting is my therapy Sixteen pieces were selected to be in when things get overwhelming and my the show including the artwork of RSD is out of control, I paint away my Romona Johnson, a resident of Brandon. heart. I am blessed, and I will continue to Johnson painted an acrylic piece called paint. It balances me.” Colorful Lines. Johnson does her own matting and The artwork was presented to the framing of each piece of art. Johnson public at the Disability Expo and Awards does not sell her art. Instead, she Ceremony held at the Museum of donates it to non-profit organizations who Science and Industry in Tampa last can then use the artwork in an auction to month. The Hillsborough County Alliance help fund their cause. “It is not about the for Citizens with Disabilities sponsors the money. I enjoy helping people. I encourevent each year to promote awareness of age others to not give up. I also tell them disability related programs and services. you can do anything when you put your The event also highlights the abilities and mind to it,” said Johnson. contributions of people with disabilities in If you would like to get in touch with the Tampa Bay area. Johnson to learn more about her art, Dignitaries including Hillsborough email her at moniemona@msn.com. Board of County Commissioners Sandra For more information on VSA Florida, Murman, Kevin Beckner and Al visit www.vsafl.org.

Brandon League Of Fine Arts To Present Artworks 2016 This September

The Brandon League of Fine Arts will this year’s chair, “The judge will select celebrate talentbetween 35 to ed artists from 45 pieces for all over the area our show. The with their judge will Annual assess each Artworks, a piece for quality juried art show. and their contriThe show will bution to the be on display in exhibit. Judges the Mook like to select Gallery at diverse styles Center Place and mediums during the and create an The Brandon League of Fine Arts, in conjunction month of with Center Place of Brandon, will host Artworks overall cohesion September. to the show.” 2016. The piece pictured, Out of the Box, was deemed the winner of last year’s show. Center Place is This year’s located at 619 Vonderburg Dr. in judge is Christine Renc-Carter, an Brandon. An artists' reception is set for esteemed artist with a great deal of expeThursday, September 8 from 5:30-7:30 rience working with exhibits and museum p.m. at Center Place. The community is collections. Renc-Carter is the newly invited to come and meet the artists and appointed curator for the Leepa-Rattner see all of their artwork. Museum of Art located on the campus of The Brandon League of Fine Arts’ St. Petersburg in Tarpon Springs. Allen Artworks is a juried show in which a judge said, “We are honored to have Christine (someone who is well known and well Renc-Carter bring her experience and thought of in the art world) is responsible expertise to the selection of this exhibifor sorting through the artwork that is sub- tion. In her position as curator, she makes mitted and selecting the work which will decisions each day that bring the best be in the show. Once the artwork is hung, exhibits possible to this beautiful art the judge will then carefully examine each museum. The Brandon League of Fine piece and decide which pieces deserve Arts shares this commitment to the awards. Brandon community.” This year, 40 artists have submitted The Brandon League of Fine Arts 60 pieces of art of various mediums. has been bringing area artists and exhibiAccording to Sue Allen, a well known and tions together for more than 50 years. For highly awarded watercolor artist who is more information, visit www.blfa.us.

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Hillsborough County Seniors Gear Up For 2016 Games

By Tamas Mondovics

Photos Courtesy Hillsborough County

Hillsborough County residents age 50 and up take part in the annual Tampa Bay Senior Games. Last year more than 600 participants took part in the two-week long Olympics-like event.

From swimming to cycling, senior residents throughout Hillsborough County are now gearing up to take part in the annual Senior Games, scheduled for this fall. The three-week event is celebrating its 36th season anniversary as organizers are now receiving registration through Friday, September 9. The competition is to begin with a continental breakfast on Monday, September 26 and will run through Thursday, October 13. According to county officials and event organizers, the annual event draws hundreds of participants, 50 years and older, who compete in a wide variety of activities, including powerlifting, cycling, golf, pickleball, swimming, tennis, track and field, table tennis, billiards, bowling, bean bag toss, dominoes, darts, baking, hobby show, and the talent showcase. Hosted by the Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department, Hillsborough County Family and Aging Services, City of Tampa Recreation Department, and Temple Terrace Leisure Services, officials are pleased to see a great turnout of athletes, especially those that set a fine example of healthy living by staying active, while representing both ends of the age-spectrum. “The Senior Games offer a number of activities for socializing and competing while having fun with your peers,’’ said Debbie Robinson with Parks and Recreation, which organizes the games. The event is said to encourage people of all ages to stay healthy and live longer by exercising. While the minimum age limit is 50, officials said that contestants often are well into their 90s, such as Edith Traina, 94, who was able to deadlift 140 lbs. to win her division in the 2015 Senior Games. Traina is expected to compete again this year, county officials said. Registration is $30 and includes two tickets to the Celebration Luncheon at All People’s Life Center located at 6105 E. Sligh Ave. in Tampa on Friday, October 14. To see the full schedule of activities and to register for 2016 Senior Games, visit hcflgov.net/seniorgames or call 7445595 ext. 38206.

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Story and photos by Tamas Mondovics

Brandon TOPSoccer Opens Registration For 2016 Fall Season

standings—just fun games,” Muzyk said. “It’s all for the kids.” Starting its 18th season this year, Brandon TOPSoccer hosts its programs at BAYSL, 3104 S. Kings Ave. in Brandon, behind Kingswood Elementary School. Since its start, the program has grown annually from 25 players in 1998 to more than 120 last year, which gives clear testimony to its continued success Young players with the Brandon TOPSoccer and need in the community. Club chase the soccer ball down the field. The 2016 season is scheduled to Brandon and surrounding area youth start on Saturday, September 10, at 9 with mental or physical disabilities who a.m., and will run through November 19. would like to learn and play soccer can Fall season registrations will began now register to join Brandon TOPSoccer on Friday, August 12 (6-8 p.m.), Saturday, for the upcoming fall season. August 13 (9 a.m.-12 Noon), Friday, Organized by youth soccer associaAugust 19 (6-8 p.m.), Saturday, August tion volunteers, and locally sponsored by 20 (9 a.m.-12 Noon), Friday, August The Brandon Area Youth Soccer League 26 (6-8 p.m.), Saturday, August 27, (9 (BAYSL) now West Florida Flames, a.m.-12 Noon) at the BAYSL clubhouse. Brandon TOPSoccer, (The Outreach Players must be 5 years old on or Program for Soccer) gives boys or girls, before September 10, 2016, and must age 5 and up, with special needs a bring a copy of their Individual Education chance to enjoy the sport as well as good Plan form to registration. association. TOP Soccer is currently seeking vol“Our goal is to enable our young athunteers and coaches, which gives high letes with disabilities to become valued school students an excellent way to earn and successful members of Florida Youth community hours. Soccer and the U.S. Youth Soccer family,” Adding to its nearly two decades of said Ken Muzyk a member of TOPSoccer success, Brandon TOPSoccer, now the board of directors. largest TOPSoccer club in the state and Muzyk added that as a corporate and among the top 10 in the nation, was recindividually sponsored program with no ognized last year by the Florida Youth cost for the family, TOP Soccer’s fall seaSoccer Association as the Program of the son is a great opportunity for families to Year. Anyone interested in coaching a take advantage of. team may contact 657-5271 or brandon“Our program is a relaxed format with tops@aol.com. Visit www.brandontopsocno practices, score keeping or team cer.com.

Brandon Teen To Play In Nature Valley First Tee Open At Pebble Beach

Talent, coupled with General Mills. “At Nature hard work, has paid off for Valley we have great Brandon teen, James admiration for the mission Morotti, who will be repreof The First Tee. The prosenting his community gram has such a meanduring the 2016 Nature ingful impact in the lives of Valley First Tee Open at young people by strengthPebble Beach, California. ening important values like The tournament is an offiresponsibility, judgment cial PGA TOUR and perseverance.” Champions event schedPlayers now commituled for September 13-18, ted to compete include that is televised internatwo-time major champiBrandon teen James Morotti, onship winner John Daly, tionally on the Golf 16, has been selected to repre- World Golf Hall of Fame Channel. sent The First Tee of Tampa As one of 165 chapmember and 28-time PGA Bay during the 2016 Nature Valley First Tee Open sched- TOUR Champions winner ters around the country, uled for next month in Pebble Bernhard Langer, and The First Tee of Tampa Beach, California. Bay is a Tampa YMCA defending champion youth development program, which was Esteban Toledo. pleased to announce the selection of the Morotti, a rising junior at Strawberry 16-year-old by a national panel of judges Crest High School, has been playing golf who evaluated a number of qualifying ele- for more than a decade and spoke highly ments, which aside from playing ability, of The First Tee of Tampa Bay program, included comprehension of the life skills which he said helped him launch his golf and character education learned through career and more. involvement with The First Tee. “I joined The First Tee at the age of According to program officials, Morotti seven and was provided with equipment will join 80 other participants from The that my family could not afford,” he said. “I First Tee chapters as they team up with played at golf courses and tournaments 81 PGA TOUR Champions players and that I would have never been able to play 162 amateurs as they compete for the on before. Most importantly, I learned how pro-junior title at Pebble Beach Golf Links to be a gentleman overall and be kind to and Poppy Hills Golf Course. my fellow player.” “The teenagers selected to play in For information about The First Tee the Nature Valley First Tee Open, includof Tampa Bay, visit www.thefirstteetaming James, have worked hard to prepare pabay.org. for this opportunity, and we are immenseFor information about the 2016 ly proud to welcome them to this year’s Nature Valley First Tee Open, visit tournament,” said Carla Vernón at www.thefirstteeopen.com.

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Volume 11, Issue 8

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