COOKIE CUSTOMS / SARTORIALIST ON THE STREET / FOOD REVOLUTION IN YOUR CORNER / THE NEW NEOCLASSICAL
On Saturday, March 4, 2017, do something for your health and that of your community by enjoying an exceptional community health event. The third annual Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center Promise Run 5K and 10K courses will follow the historic streets and lakes of Lakeland. The race is open to runners and walkers of all ages. All proceeds benefit the Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center, where innovators in cancer care and research deliver the most advanced and comprehensive diagnostics and treatments. Run or walk in memory of a loved one. Create a team to celebrate victories. Volunteer to show your support.
Join the heroes racing to conquer cancer!
5K AND 10K LAKELANDâ€™S MUNN PARK
For more information or to register, visit
PromiseRun.org or call 863.687.1024. THE LAKELANDER
HAPPY HOLIDAYS from our home to yours!
Eleven Polk County locations to serve you
Lakeland-Lake Gibson 6625 US 98 North (863) 858-3866 Lakeland North 1409 N. Florida Ave. (863) 682-8107 Haines City 35495 Hwy. 27 (863) 422-3144
Lakeland Combee 1225 N. Combee Rd. (863) 665-3111 Lakeland Christina 6100 S. Florida Ave. (863) 646-2921 Lake Wales 126 Hwy. 60 W. (863) 676-6515
Frostproof 500 N. Scenic Hwy. (863) 635-2645
Ft. Meade 1401 Hwy. 17 N. (863) 285-9757
Auburndale 521 Hughes Rd. (863) 967-6602
Eagle Lake 1515 Hwy. 17 S. (863) 294-7749
1350 N. Broadway (US 98) Bartow (863) 533-1611
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LAKELAND • 2017
G E T I N V O L V E D – W W W. M I S S F L O R I D A . O R G
TABLE OF CONTENTS
54 DECEMBER 2016
DEPARTMENTS 22 NOTE FROM THE EDITOR 24 EDITORIAL BIOS 28 PHOTOGRAPHER BIOS 122 OPENINGS 126 EVENTS 130 HISTORY
ON THE COVER The holidays can be overwhelmed and consumed by the bells and whistles of the season. But we like to think the sweetest parts of this year are those classic Christmas cookies from Nana’s oven. This issue, we bring you nostalgic baked goods you’re sure to still be craving come 2017. Photo by John Kazaklis.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PEOPLE 30 RINGING IN THE JOY Navigating holiday traditions when the nest is full
SHELTER 42 THE NEW NEOCLASSICAL A Greek-style home renovation, that salvaged memories for many
TASTE 54 COOKIE CUSTOMS The only sweets youâ€™re really craving this season
PHILANTHROPY 66 IN YOUR CORNER Big Brothers, Big Sisters
thank you thank you
From All of Us As the year end approaches, we would like to thank our clients, friends and family for your support.
From All of Us
As the year TEAM: end approaches, we would like to thank THE CORE CORE TEAM: Chuck Fossfriends • Nathan Nathan Dunham Andrew Foss our clients, andDunham family for your support. •• Andrew Foss Lisa Burton Matte Diaz • Kristi Brooks••Angela AngelaNewell Newell
CALL US AT 863-904-4745 OR VISIT COREWEALTHADVISORSINC.COM 231 N KENTUCKY AVE • STE 217 • LAKELAND
CALL US AT 863-904-4745 THE CORE TEAM: OR VISIT COREWEALTHADVISORSINC.COM Chuck Foss • Nathan Dunham • Andrew Foss Matte Diaz • Kristi Brooks • Angela Newell 231 N KENTUCKY AVE • STE 217 • LAKELAND Investment advisory services offered through Calton & Associates, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC a SEC Registered Investment Advisor.
STYLE 78 SARTORIALIST ON THE STREET Spotting Lakelander’s street style
SPECIAL FEATURE 92 FOOD REVOLUTION A modern spin on local Latin flavors
SPECIAL FEATURE 104 THE PARTNERSHIP MOVEMENT Where local businesses and the arts can thrive
CULTURE 112 ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE For this troupe of unique abilities, it’s showtime
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Brandon Patterson Kristin Crosby
GUEST EDITOR Diana Smith CULTURE EDITOR Kristin Crosby PHILANTHROPY EDITOR Adam Spafford PEOPLE EDITOR Adam Spafford SHELTER EDITOR Kristin Crosby GUEST EDITOR Daniel Barceló TASTE EDITOR Jenn Smurr COPY EDITOR Laura Burke OFFICE MANAGER Deb Patterson Design CREATIVE DIRECTOR Daniel Barceló DESIGNER Emily Vila Photography CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Dan Austin, Daniel Barceló, Sally Ibarra, John Kazaklis, Tina Sargeant
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Published by Patterson Jacobs Publishing, LLC The Lakelander is published bimonthly by Patterson Jacobs Publishing, P.O. Box 41, Lakeland, FL 33802. Reproduction in whole or in part without express written permission of The Lakelander is prohibited. The Lakelander is not responsible for any unsolicited submissions. Contact Patterson Jacobs Publishing, P.O. Box 41, Lakeland, FL 33802 863.701.2707 www.thelakelander.com Customer Service: 863.701.2707 Subscription Help: firstname.lastname@example.org “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
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FROM THE EDITOR
The moment I hear the first few chords of Nat King Cole’s The Christmas Song, nostalgia, in the strongest sense of the word, settles in. I blame my mom, who, ever since I can remember, inevitably starts listening to his album the moment the Thanksgiving meal is a wrap (if she hadn’t already secretly begun listening some time back in late October). It’s kind of our family’s cue to put up the tree, to bake cookies nonstop, and to watch Home Alone (maybe more than once). As a kid who moved several times throughout my childhood, Christmas has always carried that same feeling. Even when my family moved from our wintery rustic
home in New England to a Mediterraneanstyle abode in Central Florida, whether surrounded by snow or palm trees, it still felt the same, quite possibly because my parents have always had a way of keeping it feeling that way. Always keeping the kitchen full of everyone’s favorite cookies, always setting up Advent calendars that were stuffed with chocolates or socks, or of just always being contagiously excited throughout the month, ready to celebrate every moment because … well, it’s that time of year. While life continues to be ever-changing and full of surprises (the good, the bad, and the ugly), the Christmas season seems to play as some kind of home base for our hurried lives. Yet, as busy as we are, something about the month awakens us to recognize how enriched our lives are and how much our family and friends, who are a part of life’s mundane and exciting days, bless us. Which explains why, this time of year, home — no matter where it is — is exactly where we want to be.
KRISTIN CROSBY, EDITOR
VISIT OUR SALES CENTER: 1301 GRASSLANDS BLVD. STE 100 | LAKELAND, FL | 800.677.1301 MON–FRI 9–5PM SAT 10–5PM | SUN 12–5PM | PAT JONES 863.581.4699 | DANI MILLER 863.255.2276
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EDITORIAL BIOS KRISTIN CROSBY EDITOR Originally from the North, Kristin Crosby first came to Lakeland to study music performance at Southeastern University. From graduating, working with student leaders at SEU, and teaching yoga in NYC, a passion to write surfaced. Prior to Patterson Publishing, Kristin has worked as project coordinator for Relevant Magazine, served as grant writer for the nonprofit organization LifeNet International, and has written for Vital Magazine online. Currently, she is a frequent contributor to LifeZette, an American news and opinion site based in Washington D.C. Kristin is thrilled about her new role as editor of The Lakelander, and endeavors to uncover and give voice to the untold stories of this city. To see more of Kristin’s work, check out lifezette.com/ author/kristincrosby/ and kristincrosby.com.
ADAM SPAFFORD PEOPLE EDITOR
Adam Spafford came to Lakeland in 1999 to attend Florida Southern College and, except for a 20-month graduate school stint in Massachusetts, has been here since. When he’s not writing page-turners for The Lakelander, he trades stock and index options.
JENN SMURR TASTE EDITOR
Jenn Smurr is a Florida native and a proud Lakelander. She is a lover of people and all things food (especially dark chocolate), an excursionist, and the owner of Born & Bread Bakehouse. For the last four years, Jenn has traveled the world working full time as a fashion model. Taking advantage of the gift of travel, she spent her free time exploring the local cuisine. Her affinity for bread came to a tipping point when she visited a standing-room-only cafe in Paris. It was there that she first tried “life-changing fresh bread and local butter.” She has since traded a life in fashion for one in food.
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DIANA SMITH GUEST EDITOR
Diana smith is a native Lakelander, devoted wife, and proud mother of two rambunctious boys. She earned a BA from Florida Southern College and works at the Polk Museum of Art. She loves experiencing new perspectives by way of travel, art, literature, and conversation.
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DANIEL BARCELÓ GUEST EDITOR
Daniel Barceló is a multidisciplinary creative profesional leading the design and photography teams as The Lakelander‘s creative director. As a graduate of both Lakeland Christian School and Southeastern University, Daniel is excited for the opportunity to work and invest in the city that he has called home for many years. He endeavors to grow the magazine’s brand and influence as it continues to empower and inspire Lakeland’s creatives and the community at large.
Learn more at Follow us @seuniversity
PHOTOGRAPHER BIOS DANIEL BARCELÓ CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Daniel Barceló is a multidisciplinary creative profesional leading the design and photography teams as The Lakelander‘s creative director. As a graduate of both Lakeland Christian School and Southeastern University, Daniel is excited for the opportunity to work and invest in the city that he has called home for many years. He endeavors to grow the magazine’s brand and influence as it continues to empower and inspire Lakeland’s creatives and the community at large.
TINA SARGEANT Tina Sargeant has been professionally capturing the moments, events, and people of our region for the last seven years and photographing for The Lakelander since issue one. Tina’s photography is driven by the ability to suspend time and create emotion, and her work embodies a passion for anthropology – people, culture, and stories. sargeantstudios.com
DAN AUSTIN Dan Austin is a Florida native photographer. He specializes in a unique style that combines the spirit of his subject with a detailed attention to lighting. Through this, Dan achieves a unique and well thought out aesthetic that can be seen in his images. danaustinphotography.com
JOHN KAZAKLIS John Kazaklis was born and raised in the DC Metro Area and came to Lakeland to study at Southeastern University in 2007. After graduating, John decided to make Lakeland his home because of the great quality of life and close-knit community. His fascination with different cultures and travel made him passionate about visual storytelling and sharing stories that typically go untold. He is currently the program director at Catapult Lakeland. istoria.life
SALLY IBARRA Sally Ibarra became a Lakeland resident in 2010 and graduated from Southeastern University in 2014 with a degree in television broadcasting. Through a variety of creative career experiences, including news anchoring, she developed a passion for digital marketing. Today, she uses her creative eye and knowledge in video, photography, and journalism to create inspiring content, develop strategies, and launch campaigns as a digital marketing specialist.
RINGING IN THE
Bill and Pam Mutz
By Adam Spafford · Photography by Sally Ibarra THE HOLIDAYS SEEM TO BRING FAMILIES TOGETHER MORE THAN ANY OTHER TIME OF YEAR. RELATIVES FROM NEAR AND FAR TRAVEL TO GATHER AND CELEBRATE, REFLECT AND REJOICE. IT’S OFTEN THE TRADITIONS THAT MAKE EACH FAMILY’S CHRISTMAS EXPERIENCE SO UNIQUE TO THE NEXT.
FEW LAKELAND FAMILIES ARE AS LARGE AS THE MUTZ FAMILY, SO WE SAT DOWN WITH BILL AND PAM MUTZ TO LEARN ABOUT THEIR FAMILY’S TRADITIONS. WE REMEMBER THAT NO MATTER WHAT’S HAPPENED DURING THE YEAR OR WHAT LIES AHEAD, OUR FAMILIES — AND THEIR TRADITIONS — ARE AMONG THE BEST THINGS IN LIFE.
The Lakelander: You’ve brought up a considerably large family in Lakeland over the years. What is your secret to raising such a close family and developing traditions during Christmas? Pam Mutz: We have seven boys and five girls. It wasn’t our intention to have such a large family, but the Lord just showed us to trust Him in this area. As believers in Christ, we’re supposed to trust Him with every area of our lives. When we first got married, I thought babies were ugly and they all looked alike! My doctor’s name was actually Billy Graham (although not that Billy Graham), and he said I’d have a hard time getting pregnant. So I was really shocked to find out that I was pregnant when we got back from our honeymoon. I was so sick and didn’t know what was wrong with me. God out-dreams your dreams, and I’d rather go with his dreams because they are far greater! Our family has been the most incredible blessing in our lives. Bill Mutz: We integrate traditions from [our] families. It was an unanticipated reality that as our family grew, it became more difficult for either one of our families to gather everyone together. And yet both of our families have been very accommodating. My parents are 89 years old, and even to this day, we all go to their home for Thanksgiving. Pam: They are amazing! And everyone loves being with them. It’s really cool to see the integrations of the generations. Bill: Because of the large size of our family, we were sure to tell our kids as they started their own families that they have the freedom to go to whatever location they felt they needed to go. It’s complicated enough for one family to make that choice. But the great reality is that all the siblings love to be together. TL: What are some of your fondest memories of your growing family’s holiday traditions? How did you develop them? Pam: Before the kids could come down to the Christmas tree, they had to line up on the stairs for their Christmas pictures. Eventually we started to run out of stairs! Bill: Early on, when we opened Christmas presents, we would all open one at a time and go in a circle. The last time we did that, we started at 9 a.m. and finished at 2 p.m. We said, “We’re not doing this anymore!” Pam: The kids loved giving each other presents, and so we thought it was important for everyone to see each person open their 32
Pam: We use 3x5 cards and a pen at the table settings to record the three things we’re thankful for, and I put those cards in with the Thanksgiving decorations. When we pull out the decorations the next year, it’s wonderful to read what God’s done over the previous years. We also have a daily tradition called “Highs and Lows.” We go around the table and describe high points and low points of the day. It helps you focus on how purposeful your day was and [hear] what happened in each other’s lives. Bill: “High and Lows” also helps us coach and support our children. We believe we can help them adapt to life by teaching out of the moments they’re in. We can show them the way of hope through difficult things. Pam: Yes, successful and unsuccessful things. Another Mutz tradition is to open one present on Christmas Eve. We always do a Nativity play. Bill: We have new characters every year. Pam: It’s hysterically funny! You have to go into each other’s closest to find clothes to wear for the play. There’s always a new baby to put in the manger. It’s so fun. One of us reads Luke 2, which we also work to memorize during December. gifts, but the family just got too big for that. That’s when we went to picking names five or six years ago. Another tradition we have is to place three kernels at each person’s table setting and go around the table sharing three things that we’re most thankful for from the past year. Bill: Over the years, it’s been a very touching time that brings tears to a lot of the parents’ eyes, because we often don’t take the time to express those stronger sentiments.
Bill: Logistically, it’s not efficient, but it’s always a robust memory! TL: You must have a large table! How many Mutz family members typically gather for the holidays? Bill: Well, we use multiple tables. We’ve had it in the high 30s and down to 17 or so. Pam: Yes, everyone was at our home for Thanksgiving except for one family from Colorado that has six children and is pregnant. One of our sons just got engaged, so he is with his fiancé’s family. And another family of four is in Tampa. We are pregnant with the 17th and 18th grandkid, so they are multiplying. And two more of those are with Jesus. TL: It sounds like one of your family traditions is having large families! Bill: Yes, it is. The kids love it.
A significant painting surrounded by arrows, every one represents each child and is given to them on a wedding or special day.
“Especially with little ones, the days seem so long, but the years are so short.” –PAM MUTZ
Pam: I think they’ve seen what an incredible blessing it is. Even though it’s busier with young kids, it’s such a joy. It’s incredible how close our kids are to each other. In fact, a year ago, when one of our sons got engaged at Christmas, almost all of our family went out to Colorado to celebrate with him and his fiancé. Bill: It’s who they want to be with. TL: What a blessing that is, because so many families wouldn’t say that. Bill: It’s interesting … I was talking to some guys the other day about Thanksgiving and Christmas and what fun it is to get together, and both guys had blank stares. You could clearly see I just said something to which they couldn’t relate at all. They talked about how they would just try to get through the family gathering, that people just go to separate rooms and they don’t do anything. And I thought what a heartache that would be to me to not see our families, to not spend time with one another. Not that we don’t get spirited and have disagreements — that’s part of who we are — but we always come back together.
Pam: One of our family’s core values is authenticity. That can be pretty, and that can be ugly. We’ve seen it make a lot of difference in understanding each other. There are issues you have to address when a family is authentic with each other, but that’s where the core of Christ comes in. When you understand that He designed us for a relationship with Him as well as each other. But for the brokenness of the world — the sin that separates us from Him and each other — we have to go through times of repentance and forgiveness with Him and with each other. We’ve seen that God is faithful to renew and restore our relationships. TL: What does a day look like when the Mutz family gathers around this time of year? Bill: The wonderful thing about this family is that there’s a great amount of sensitivity to observing the need for nurturing hurting hearts during tougher times, as well as celebrating the good things. That’s a healthy part of any good family tradition, and times together is really meeting people where they are at and encouraging them in their walk of life. Reminding them confidently that God doesn’t protect us from what He perfects us through. That’s such an important principle of life. He’s doing things always in our lives for his perfect purposes even when they are different than what we expected or wanted. Pam: On the lighter side, there’s a couple of us girls that really like to exercise, so we’ll get up early and go run together, walk the lake, or exercise on the back porch for 30 minutes.
With walls covered in pictures, awards, and memorabilia, the Mutz home is a capsule of family moments and memories.
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“We have a saying that, ‘We’ll make it work.’” –PAM MUTZ
Bill: Just long enough for the husbands to get all the diapers changed! Pam: Yes, the key is do work out before all the little ones get up! Eventually, the little ones will drift onto the porch. Unfortunately, morning seems to go by so fast. Especially with little ones, the days seem so long, but the years are so short. It’s so special to get to enjoy each other’s kids and grandkids. Another core value in our family is to teach joy in work. It’s awesome to see that in action when you have one little one who’s placing the napkins and another placing silverware. We have a saying that, “We’ll make it work.” It’s easy with so many people to wonder how you’ll prepare that much food or get everyone where they need to be. But we’ve found that if our family will rest in the enjoyment of the moment of the traditions instead of perfection, that it brings a lot of joy.
Vanessa Saunders, PhD, MBA ’16 With a PhD in immunology, Vanessa was ready to move out of the lab and take on the challenges of management. She turned to Florida Southern’s MBA program for its real-world case studies, which gave her the hands-on management experience she needed to move ahead. “I’m not interested in spending sixteen months reading a textbook,” said Vanessa. “I want to use what I’m learning. Getting practical experience is really important for what I want to do with my career. That’s why I chose FSC.” The Barney Barnett School of Business & Free Enterprise at Florida Southern College is the only school of business in Polk County accredited by the Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business.
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N E W
WRITTEN BY KRISTIN CROSBY PHOTOGRAPHY BY TINA SARGEANT
WHEN CHUCK AND LISA FOSS DECIDED TO PLANT ROOTS CLOSER TO DOWNTOWN LAKELAND, THEY SET OUT TO TRANSFORM THIS NEOCLASSICAL HOUSE INTO A TIMELESS HOME, TA K I N G I T F R O M F O R M A L T O F U N C T I O N A L A S A P L A C E T O R A I S E A FA M I LY A N D E N T E R TA I N . R E A D H O W T H E C O U P L E WA S A B L E T O C R E AT E T H E H O M E O F T H E I R D R E A M S W H I L E PRESERVING THIS HISTORIC BUILDING AND THE M A N Y M E M O R I E S S T O R E D I N I T.
ith stately columns and an inviting grand entrance, it stands out among a crowd of Spanish bungalows. In its neoclassical style, one could say the white house on Mississippi Avenue is somewhat reminiscent of the White House. The house was built in 1921 by Angelo Raymondo, the son of Italian immigrant Salvedo Raymondo of Palermo. Angelo’s mother, Elise Legler, was from Tennessee and of Swedish descent. Born and raised in Lakeland, Angelo desired no other place to plant his roots. IN GREEK STYLE Angelo’s father, Salvedo, worked as both a real estate agent and a merchant. In addition to his day jobs, Salvedo built the largest
brick commercial building on Kentucky Avenue. (Now a private residence, only a small remnant still stands.) Angelo grew up spending most of his childhood in downtown Lakeland, later attending Florida Southern College (then called Southern College) to follow in the steps of his father as a real estate agent. A few years after marrying Elizabeth â€œZannieâ€? Peebles in 1917, Angelo began to build the Greek-styled columned home on Mississippi Avenue, where the couple would raise their first two children. By their third child, the couple had moved to a home on Miramar Drive and put the white house up for rent. The house went on to be home to many: rented by Maurice (a professor of biology at Florida Southern College) and Unice Mulvania in 1928; later to Josie and Ben Garrett, a Bible salesman; and
the following year to Edward and Ida Carlisle. By 1961 the home was sold to Max and Edna Williams. The couple soon transformed the house on Mississippi into a foster home, where it was a nest to dozens of children (as many as 20 at a time) until 1995. Not long after the foster home closed, Max passed away, and Edna moved out. The house would soon meet its new owners, and with them a new chapter of life. ON MISSISSIPPI AVENUE Chuck and Lisa Foss moved to Lakeland in the 1980s as newlyweds from South Florida. First purchasing a small home on the corner of Mississippi Avenue and Park Street, within a few years the couple sold their house and returned to South Florida. But the two soon became eager
Built in 1921 by Angelo Raymondo, this Greekstyle house is part of the Historic District.
to move back to the Historic District of Lakeland, back to the accessible and active lifestyle of the city. After spending years making the commute from the south side of town, the couple was ready to return to the walkable lifestyle and nearness of downtown. It took nearly two years as they searched for homes, until they found the white house on Mississippi Avenue. The couple admits the purchase came with “perhaps a few misgivings,” their main hesitations being sinking and uneven foundation piers, out-of-date electrical and substandard HVAC equipment, as well as two previously renovated large front columns with incorporated capitals (salvaged bases turned upside down). Mostly, Chuck and Lisa were eager to create the ideal interior design for living and hosting. Though the couple was well aware they had just signed themselves up for quite
the project, Chuck admits, “There were weekly surprises with the extent of work that was needed.” HISTORIC HURDLES Initially, the style of the home wasn’t ideally what the Fosses had been looking for. They’d been searching for more of a Craftsman home rather than the Greek Revival house they were soon to settle into. “We both could see a vision for the house we selected, but it took the help of interior designer Ursula Radabaugh and some close friends to finally see it
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enough to make the decision,” Chuck says. However, with a bit of vision and a game plan, they soon saw the Greekstyled structure and all its possibilities to fit the Craftsman home they were seeking. Sometimes it’s the unlikely places we don’t plan on arriving to that often hold the most potential. When they were ready to renovate, one of the initial challenges the Fosses faced head on was approval by the Historical Preservation Board. With any house, each is unique in all aspects, even its problems.
Being able to lay out a clear plan for the home and knowing just what each week would hold was a bit of a gamble. Since the reconstruction required removal of some of its old structure, there were several plans that had to be signed off on before Chuck and Lisa could move ahead with renovation. “On the existing house, it involved taking everything to the studs,” says Chuck. The house had to be taken down to its frame, stripped to its bare bones. “A great number of studs, floor joints, etc. were replaced, and all mechanical, all electric, all plumbing, floors,
Centered around a white color scheme, touches of tonal greys, black, and earthy rustic textiles balance out the palette for a Craftsman style.
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and every piece of drywall (excluding all of eight feet) were replaced.” Within every facet of the household, an entire renovation of the home was required to take place all at once. For construction work, after many referrals Chuck hired Wayne Bunch. “Wayne is an excellent communicator. I often joked with him that he could deliver bad news and make you feel good about it. It was an important quality for a project like this,” Chuck says. He also credits the efficient local businesses of Mike Arnett for electric, Mike Alexander for mechanical, Tom Monaco for cabinet work, and Bill Dwyer for carpentry, all as largely contributing to the final product. DESIGNING THE HOME With a blank canvas to style the interior, the house itself remained the direction As loyal supporters of local artists, the Fosses’ home is decorated with several swan portraits. Pictured (right) is a painting by Mary May Witte.
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for design. To bring the dream home to life, Ursula interviewed Chuck and Lisa, learning everything about how the house would be used and occupied, what they expected from a new home, and a thorough understanding of just how the couple wanted the space to feel for their family, guests, and even pets. In order to lay out the blueprint to capture what the Fosses had envisioned, Ursula incorporated a collection of their ideas, including several options for the space planning, custom millwork design, and design aesthetics. “The home also required an addition to accommodate the open space needed for a family-friendly kitchen and living space, as well as a deck for entertaining,” says Ursula. Acting as the “burr under the saddle,” as she puts it, for all the contractors and craftsmen, Ursula remained a constant presence throughout the process to assure everyone was attaining their overall end goals of design. “Too often decisions are made in the
Greek Revival style among the slew of bungalow style homes (very popular at the time) as too big and fancy. But, given Chuck and Lisa’s desire for a large family environment, Ursula could envision the home’s potential. After she created a few space plans, the Fosses, too, were able see the great potential the home held. “This project could not have succeeded from an aesthetic standpoint without Ursula,” says Chuck. “She understood what we wanted and led us down that road.” The interior color palette was centered on the classic simplicity of a white scheme, which the Fosses love, with touches of tonal greys and black. “We stayed true to the vision for the inside of the house based upon Ursula’s design and pictures of what we like,” says Chuck. From the stately neoclassical face of the home, the interior seamlessly transitions into the timeless, homey atmosphere of a Craftsman which the Fosses had desired. Through the many
WITH A BLANK CANVAS TO STYLE THE INTERIOR, THE HOUSE ITSELF REMAINED THE DIRECTION FOR DESIGN. moment that later have ramifications that alter the initial design intent. My job was to keep an eye on the process and provide good reasons why a decision, while not at first the easiest or least expensive, was in fact the right and most economical decision in the long run.” SEEING THE VISION THROUGH At the time the Fosses were searching to buy, they had at first dismissed Angelo’s
exhaustive hours of decisions, plans, and time invested in the renovation and design, the white house fully met the expectations of their dream home. ARRIVING HOME Though Chuck and Lisa will tell you that within this house they have found the home they had long been seeking, there are others in Lakeland who are still reminded of “home” every time they pass by. “I have had eight to 10 prior foster children stop by the house either during renovation or after we moved in,” Chuck says. “One lady was emotional when she told me the spot where she used to sleep on the floor. While things could be difficult at times, she was very thankful for a roof over her head.” On more than one occasion, Chuck says people have walked up to the house, some with tears in their eyes, recalling the memories they once had there. Often they will thank him for preserving the building so that their home of memories still stand. When the Fosses embarked on the tiresome and lengthy journey of bringing the vision of their own home to life, little did they know they’d be salvaging memories of what was home to so many others.
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THE MOMENT CHRISTMAS IS UNDERWAY, OUR EYES SEEM TO AVERT TO EVERYTHING SHINY AND NEW. OUR STOMACHS, MEANWHILE, ARE JUST LONGING FOR ALL THINGS FAMILIAR AND SUGARY SWEET.
he holidays are our green light to pull out all the stops. Go big, or go home. Make it Deluxe. It’s that time of year to overstimulate the senses with the latest LED sparkly lights for the house, the showstopping rib-eye roast for Christmas dinner, or that opulent $50 Chocolate Panettone you’re just hoping someone will send. Though when it comes to satisfying that cookie craving that naturally comes with Christmastime, going home might be the only place that ever really gets it right. This Christmas (and, let’s be honest, most every day of the year), our mouths are watering mostly for fresh, home-baked goods. Those oaty, nutty, rustic cookies . . . the ones with a simplicity of flavors that hits the taste buds with a kind of complexity that’s laced with memories and slight sugar rushes. There is a sort of magic when the kitchen is flooded with the aroma of nostalgic, sweet, buttery dough. (Well, naturally, if Mom or Grandma are making them.) One could argue it’s these simple familiar tastes, as opposed to the extravagant desserts of the season, that make for the desired momentary getaways from
December’s hustle and bustle. While the most offbeat and elaborate of cookies may be on the rise, decorated in detail and washed in bright hues, few things can satisfy like a fresh homemade batch of cookies straight from the oven. Sometime it’s only those classic recipes that we grew up with that hold the savory sentiments of both holiday and home in one bite. Of course, there never seems to be enough days in the month for baking cookies, let alone eating them (accompanied by Christmas-movie marathons, of course). Where there are empty cookie jars, there are eager taste buds, anticipating the plethora of sweets to be devoured over these next few weeks. Rather than all the cutters and bedazzled frostings, the reason Grandma always gravitated to simple cookie drops and icebox-rigid dough slices may have been because they didn’t over-complicate the process or over-stimulate the taste buds. Rather, her perfected recipes seem to know just what we want, even when we don't. So, this year we bring you a few of our favorite recipes, some straight from Grandma's recipe collection. Because, regardless of how many hours someone slaves over a roast, nothing else tastes quite like Christmas than those classic cookies.
LAKELANDER COOKIE AKA “NOT YOUR AVERAGE PEANUT BUTTER SANDWICH COOKIE” (Since we like to think Lakeland isn’t quite “average” itself...)
peanut butter filling: 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter ( Jenn enjoys Reese's peanut butter) 6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened 2 Tbsp powdered sugar 2 Tbsp honey 1 tsp kosher salt peanut butter cookies: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp baking powder 1 2/3 cups rolled oats (old-fashioned, not instant) 1/2 tsp kosher salt 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened 1/3 cup crunchy natural peanut butter 3/4 cup granulated sugar 2/3 cup packed brown sugar 2 large eggs, at room temperature 1 tsp pure vanilla extract To make the peanut butter filling, combine all the filling ingredients in a bowl using a whisk. Cover and chill the mixture until the cookies are ready to be filled. To make the peanut butter cookies, in a bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Stir in the oats and salt. Set aside the dry ingredients. In the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment, combine butter, chunky peanut butter, and sugars. Cream on medium-high speed until very fluffy and pale, at least 3 minutes, scraping down the mixing bowl as needed. Turn the mixer to medium-low and add eggs, 1 at a time, beating to incorporate each and scraping down the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla. Add in the dry ingredients on low speed a little at a time, and mix until just combined. Do not overmix. Remove the bowl from the mixer and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula, going all the way to the bottom of the bowl to mix in the dry ingredients well. Use an ice-cream scoop to portion all the cookies in 1-ounce scoops (or use about 1 heaping tablespoon per cookie), placing the scoops on a 56
parchment-lined baking sheet. (Place all the cookies close together for the chilling step — you will space them for baking later.) You should have about 48 cookies. Chill the scooped cookies for at least two hours or longer. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange 8 cookies, spaced evenly apart and staggered, on each parchmentlined baking sheet. (Note: Do not flatten the cookies; they will flatten as they bake.) Set the baking sheet inside another baking sheet to double pan and place it in the oven. Bake until evenly golden, about 12 minutes, rotating the pan halfway throughout. If you have 2 double-panned pans in the oven at the same time, also switch them between the racks. Remove the pan from the oven and cool on a wire rack for about 10 minutes before removing the cookies with a metal spatula. Allow the cookies to cool completely before filling them. To make a cookie sandwich, turn one cookie flat side up and spread with a little less than 2 teaspoons of filling. (If you have a 1-ounce scoop, you can slightly underfill it to portion the filling or underfill a tablespoon) Top with another cookie, flat side down, pressing gently. Repeat until all the cookies are assembled into sandwiches.
TE 16 DA 20 G 17, IN N ER PE B O EM EC D
SALTED RYE COOKIES
Recipe on pg. 62
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NANAâ€™S CHRISTMAS COOKIES 2 sticks of butter (softened) 4 Tbsp sugar 2 cups flour 2 cups finely chopped pecans 2 tsp vanilla Powder sugar (for rolling cookies after baked) Cream room temp butter with sugar. Gradually add flour. Once mixed, add vanilla and pecans. Bake on parchment paper at 350 degrees F. for 8-10 minutes. Donâ€™t overbake. (You want them to melt in your mouth, right?) Roll in powdered sugar, and then roll once more.
SALTED RYE COOKIES (two versions)
Version 1: 1 cup (2 sticks / 225 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature 3/4 cup (150 g) granulated sugar 1 large egg Kosher salt 1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest (optional) 2 1/2 cups (230 g) (dark) rye flour 3 Tbsp coarse sugar
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream the butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, a pinch of salt, and the orange zest. Gradually mix in flour. Divide the dough into 2 portions, and place each on a sheet of plastic wrap. Shape into logs about 2 inches in diameter and wrap tightly. To shape the soft dough log into a more perfect cylinder, use a paper-towel tube: Cut the tube open vertically along one side and nest the wrapped log inside, then tape or rubber-band the tube closed. Chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. On a sheet of waxed paper, combine 1 1/2 tsp salt and the sparkling coarse sugar. Unwrap the dough logs and roll them in the mixture to coat well. Place each log on a cutting board and cut into 1/8-inch-thick rounds, arranging the rounds one inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until lightly browned at the edges, about 16 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through so cookies bake evenly. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Follow previous instructions. Cut cookies a tad bit thicker. Make a small indention and fill with 1/2 tsp of your favorite jam or jelly. We used raspberry preserves. Enjoy!
Dinner Is Served! Ribs Served nightly! THE LAKELANDER
FLOURLESS OATMEAL CHOCOLATE CHUNK COOKIES (two versions)
Version 1: 2 1/4 cups old-fashioned oats, divided 1 Tbsp cornstarch 1/2 tsp baking powder 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened 1/3 cup granulated sugar 1/3 cup packed light-brown sugar 1 large egg 1 tsp vanilla 1 cup coarsely chopped bittersweet chocolate Parchment paper 1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt Heat oven to 375 degrees F. and set racks in upper and lower thirds of oven. In a food processor or blender, pulse 1 1/4 cups oats until very finely ground. Add cornstarch and baking powder; pulse briefly. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add flour mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in chocolate and remaining oats. Drop dough by tablespoons, 2 inches apart, onto 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Sprinkle with salt. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 15 minutes. Cool on sheets for 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Version 2: LACE COOKIES Follow previous instructions, but double butter for thin, light, crisp Lace Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk cookies.
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AS JANUARY IS NATIONAL MENTORING MONTH, THE LAKELANDER SAT DOWN WITH BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS’ POLK COUNTY REGIONAL DIRECTOR JAVAN FRINKS, LEADERSHIP COUNCIL MEMBER JEFF BROADUS, BIG SISTER SABRINA MCCLELLION, AND HER 11-YEAR-OLD LITTLE SISTER, LILA, WHO TALK ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE AND JOY OF MENTORING.
The Lakelander: What is National Mentoring Month? Just how did it come to be? Javan Frinks: National Mentoring Month began in 2002 as a joint effort by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, The National Mentoring Partnership (MENTOR), and the Corporation for National and Community Service to promote youth mentoring. It’s held each January with the goals of raising awareness of mentoring in its various forms, recruiting individuals to mentor, and promoting the rapid growth of mentoring by recruiting organizations to engage their constituents in mentoring. TL: What children does Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) serve? Jeff Broadus: Big Brothers Big Sisters Tampa Bay has been serving at-risk youth in Polk County since 1970. BBBS has proven to be one of the most effective youth mentoring organizations in both the state of Florida and the U.S. for over a century. BBBS has served in Polk County since 1970. Its primary mission is to provide long-term one-to-one mentoring
relationships that improve academic performance, attitudes, and behaviors, and help establish positive relationships for at-risk youth in our community. TL: Tell us about your involvement with BBBS. Javan Frinks: I was matched as a Little Brother in my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina, for about two years. When I was six months old, my father passed away from cancer. I was blessed to have a strong family, wasn’t having disciplinary problems or struggling in school, but my mom wanted me to have a good male role model, someone to do guy stuff with. Some of my memories of spending time with my Big Brothers are playing video games at the arcade and going to the beach. I learned two things from having a Big Brother: you don’t have to be related to show someone you care, and communities really come to life when people share their time with each other. As Polk County Regional Director, my job is a little different every day, but ultimately my goal is to make sure that
Jeff helps Nate run a few drills ahead of his basketball game.
everyone who comes in contact with BBBS has a meaningful experience whether they are staff, Bigs and Littles (BBBS mentors and mentees), donors, or people at a festival. Second, is to spread the good news about how one child at a time we are changing the communities we serve for the better forever by building the world’s biggest family. My primary responsibilities are partnership development; fundraising; supporting our program staff who work directly with Bigs, Littles, and their families; and ensuring that the work in Polk County aligns with our broader agency goals. Partnership development is our way of sustainably recruiting volunteers. By partnering with businesses and other organizations like churches or community groups, we make presentations to their staff or work with them to support their youth-serving initiatives. We host events in Polk, like our Winter Fundraising Luncheon and partner with others like the Citrus Center Kiwanis Club for the Pancake Festival. Sabrina McClellion: Being a mentor was something I always wanted to do. But at first I was worried that they were only looking for younger mentors. I’m 55. But when I talked to BBBS further, that wasn’t the case at all. The organization gladly accepts Bigs in a wide age range. And that works well because the older Bigs can teach their Littles about life experiences that younger Bigs may not have had yet. Of course, Littles can teach the older Bigs many things, too. It’s like having a grandchild around. Age also doesn’t matter because Big
Brothers Big Sisters is very good at matching Bigs and Littles. My first Little moved away to Georgia after the first year, and I was matched with another Little. And both of the girls were like mini me’s. Lila: I’ve been Sabrina’s Little Sister for a year, but I’ve been interested in BBBS since I first heard about it in kindergarten. Jeff Broadus: I’m a member of the Polk County BBBS Leadership Council and have served locally as a Big Brother to Nate for over nine years. My story with BBBS began when I was matched with Nate, a first-grader at the time. Nate had been on a waiting list to get matched for over a year. He has never met his father and was being raised by a single mother of two children. His mother felt a strong need to have a male role model in his life and reached out to BBBS for support. I was 50 at the time and an empty nester looking for an opportunity to serve in the local community. I had become aware of BBBS in college, where my fraternity hosted local children a couple times a year to serve food and play games. I knew that one day this may be an area where I would enjoy volunteering. The relationship between Nate and me developed quickly: first building trust, having fun, and enjoying experiences that Nate might not otherwise get to enjoy. Nate loved sports, and we enjoyed going to basketball games at Florida Southern, football games at USF, the Bucs, and baseball games of the Tampa Bay Rays. For most of these events, BBBS provided free tickets along with opportunities to meet the players and go on the field prior
“MENTOR RELATIONSHIPS HELP BUILD MORE FRIENDSHIPS, MORE SELF-CONFIDENCE, AND, MOST IMPORTANTLY, MORE BRIGHT FUTURES FOR OUR CHILDREN.” — JEFF BROADUS
“ONE CHILD AT A TIME WE ARE CHANGING THE COMMUNITIES WE SERVE FOR THE BETTER FOREVER, BY BUILDING THE WORLD’S BIGGEST FAMILY.” — JAVAN FRINKS
to game time. Much of our time together was filled with swimming, kayaking, and simple playground activities.
my family and those around me better, and to be a servant in the community — real to me. It’s quite satisfying.
Nate turned 16 this past year. We have been together for nine years. Our time together still involves fun activity, but we also meet to simply talk about college, exercise, faith, over a pizza dinner. I am so proud of how far his development has come. He is a successful student at George Jenkins High School and ended his freshman year with a 3.7 grade average. Nate has real hopes and dreams to complete a college degree. He has struggled a bit his second year in a couple of honors classes but is determined to improve these grades to get back on track. He is a member of his high school basketball team, works 10-15 hours a week at Taco Bell, and is a manager for the high school volleyball team to earn community service hours. Nate has learned how to become a successful team player in these life situations. All of this is possible because Nate has a loving and supportive mother. She encourages him to achieve and to try new things. BBBS has come alongside her effort to provide Nate with additional opportunities to gain new life skills and to be mentored in a long-term relationship.
Not all Littles have had destabilizing events in their lives, but many have. In some cases, such as my Little Brother’s where he doesn’t know his father, it’s helpful to have a trusted male with whom he feels comfortable talking about subjects he might hesitate to talk to his mother about.
TL: I bet the benefits of a mentoring relationship are for the mentee and mentor alike. What’s the impact? Jeff Broadus: My relationship with Nate benefits me probably as much as, or more than, it benefits him. It’s made my personal goals — to honor God, to love 72
HERE ARE SOME STATISTICS OF BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS PROGRAM IMPACT:
Javan “J.” Frinks, Polk County Regional Director
Mackenzie Wooten, Enrollment and Matching Specialist
Sarah McCarty, Senior Match Support Specialist
Stephanie Fox, Match Support Specialist
Leandra Bence Garcia, Senior Match Support Specialist
• 97% of youth are promoted to the next grade level • 99% remain out of the Juvenile Justice system • 92% achieved higher grades in reading and math • 100% achieved higher grades in science
Sabrina McClellion: It’s hard to express how much I enjoy this program. I’d take more Little Sisters if they’d give them to me! I get probably as much, or more, out of it than my Little. We have such a good time. My current Little is a joy.
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Sabrina and Lila often volunteer and run donation drives for the SPCA adoption center.
She is 11 and wants to be a doctor or a scientist [Lila confirms that it’s been her dream to go into the medical field to be a surgeon or perhaps a veterinarian]. She’s so intelligent and talented, sings really well. She’s really got it together. She has had some destabilizing events in her life and now she is being raised by her grandmother.
a difference in their lives, and the kids make a difference for you too. Lila: Before I became Sabrina’s Little, I was really insecure, and I didn’t want to talk to people. But she makes me feel much better about being social. Now I always have someone to hang out with and talk to, especially about big problems. Sabrina is like a mom to me; we’ve really become that close. We go bowling, go to Family Fun Center, see movies, and just hang out and talk.
“SABRINA IS LIKE A MOM TO ME; WE’VE REALLY BECOME THAT CLOSE. WE GO BOWLING, GO TO FAMILY FUN CENTER, SEE MOVIES, AND JUST HANG OUT AND TALK.” — LILA I still see my first Little Sister when she comes back to town, and my husband and I’ve visited her while we were on vacation. We call or text each other at least once a month; that’s how strong our bond is after just a year of mentorship. I like to tell people that they do have the time and energy, and you can make such
TL: Jeff, you mentioned in an earlier conversation that even though there are 175 BBBS relationships in Polk County, there’s still a waiting list. How can someone get involved? Jeff Broadus: For every child BBBS is serving, there are many more on a waiting list right here in Lakeland and Polk County. Right now, that number is 100 children. They want a chance just like Nate. BBBS simply needs more mentor volunteers to make this a reality. For those who may be interested in learning more, they can go online to bbbstampabay.org, attend one of the monthly information sessions held locally, or contact BBBS Polk County at 863.514.7556. If volunteer time is not possible, but
For questions or to schedule a “BAM! Be an Awesome Mentor Info Session” at your job, church, or community group please contact Javan Frinks, Polk County Regional Director for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay JavanF@BBBSTampaBay. org or at 863.514.7556.
Big Brothers Big Sisters 1231 East Orange Street Lakeland, FL 33801 bbbstampabay.org 863.682.5191
you are interested in supporting BBBS financially, donations can be made at bbbstampabay.org. Eighty-five percent of all money donated goes directly back to the children. The cost to match and maintain a Big/Little relationship is roughly $1,500 annually. BBBS is rated four stars out of four by Charity Navigator for financial management.
Lila: I would tell other kids interested in Big Brothers Big Sisters to just go ahead and get involved! Your Big makes you feel like you’re free from everything, and you feel great about yourself. I would tell adults that the Littles make you happy when you’re with them, and if you don’t have a daughter or a son, you can have a Little Brother or Sister that’s just like one.
By volunteering with BBBS, you will help put children on the right path. You can be a caring mentor, equipped with constant support by professionals who will provide guidance. You can help pave the path to academic achievement and success in life. Mentor relationships help build more friendships, more self-confidence, and, most importantly, more bright futures for our children.
Jeff Broadus: In Polk, we refer to our Big Orientation Training Info Sessions as “BAM! Be an Awesome Mentor Info Session.” They are always open to the public, so we encourage guests to bring a friend. It’s an opportunity to learn more about mentoring before committing. This is the fastest way to get started as a Big Brother or Big Sister (RSVPs are preferred but not required).
Sartorialist on the street FINDING INSPIRIATION IN THE EVERYDAY. By Daniel Barceló • Photography by Dan Austin
ou’ll notice this issue’s Style section is a little different. Most times, these pages are dedicated to expertly styled, meticulously photographed, perfectly constructed images. We do this to inspire you to take chances and explore aspects of your personal style you may have not previously considered. This time, however, we’ve shifted our perspective and looked outward, to you, real Lakelanders, on the street to find inspiration. Every day, you get up and make decisions on what to wear. These choices are informed by a wide variety of motivations: personal taste, comfort, occasion, and environment. The result is a statement that looks and feels uniquely yours and brings a sense of purpose and confidence to the activities of your day. We sought out Lakelanders who bring this intentionality and personality to our streets and asked them to share their thoughts on personal style.
For decades, designers and fashionistas alike have been expertly balancing a striking mixture of traditionally high- and low-end garments to create what we now recognize as modern street style. Pairing athletic brands with high-end shoes and luxury accessories creates a look that is simultaneously accessible and sophisticated. As our city moves toward being more friendly to pedestrians and cyclists, we hope to see more looks like this out and about.
“I describe my style as tomboy chic; I like to borrow from the boys. I’m totally inspired by menswear, I just put a feminine twist on it.” – JADACY
There’s nothing like a good classic. American style has long been defined by tried-and-true staples that look great on almost everyone. Hailing from New-England’s ivy-league campuses, preppy ensembles have managed to stay iconic while keeping up with the times. You can never go wrong with a crewneck sweater paired with a chambray button-down. Switch out your everyday Oxfords for a more modern double monkstrap loafer, and you’ve taken this look from expected to effortlessly sharp.
“I’ve always been more about a classic and clean-cut look rather than jumping onto every other fashion trend.” –TIM
“I like to incorporate the current trend, but I am drawn towards timeless styles. When you keep the classics your baseline, it’s hard to go wrong.” –DEB
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We found that this was the perfect time of year to take on this street-style experiment. Many Lakelanders look forward to the cooler months to wear pieces that for most of the year stay buried in the back of their closets. Winter gives us the opportunity to layer garments of different weights and textures that would be more hazardous than fashionable in August and September.
“Individuality is the trend. I’m always trying to push the limits of fashion with an artistic approach. Winter presents more opportunities for contrasting layers with different proportions and textures.” – JORDAN
“Simple patterns and classic layers are my winter wardrobe go-tos!” – ASHLEY
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“This outfit, like most of mine, is inspired by the ’70s era style. I enjoy placing a more modern twist on the vintage classics.” – EVAN
“My wardrobe mostly consists of Bohoinspired, thrifted, and simple pieces that are functional (dog mom-friendly) and comfy. Fringe booties (because, in my book, fringe is always a “yes”) and gold details make this whole look complete.” – ABIGAIL
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Revolution FOR CHEF MARCOS FERNANDEZ, ITâ€™S ABOUT CHANGE, ADAPTATION, LOVE, AND CULTURE
BY KRISTIN CROSBY PHOTOGRAPHY BY TINA SARGEANT
Chef Marcos Fernandez
arcos Fernandez’s life has been on a steady path: first as a student, then a culinary caterer, and now as executive chef (with a quick stint along the way as a Telemundo news anchor) to bring Latin flavors to the masses. The masses of Lakeland, that is. The former executive chef at Lakeland Yacht and Country Club, Fernandez has been instilling the flavors of the city with his Latin roots and Miami influences long before his first restaurant, Nineteen61, launched a year ago. Today, Nineteen61’s modern Latin cuisine has arrived to an established mode, continuing to awaken taste buds with local, fresh flavors. The Lakelander: What was the inspiration for naming your restaurant Nineteen61? Chef Marcos Fernandez: The seed was planted in my early culinary school days when I had gotten hired to run a very small kitchen that had not been used for many months. I was excited but very nervous. I sought the council of my mentor. I asked him a very simple question, “Chef, what should I cook at the restaurant?” His response began my journey, “Stick to what you know and let it grow.” 94
I spent the next 10 years working at Italian restaurants and French ones, too. I butchered a bit and catered for extra cash. I then got my first executive job at a country club in Jax and that helped me further develop that void I had had for many years, which is the identity of a chef. I was free to cook, but I had to do it without labeling myself as a “Cuban chef.” I dabbled in more Cuban nights, Asian nights, Peruvian Nights, BBQ nights, etc., always sneaking in the Latin flare and pushing the envelope further. Every club I worked at I showcased it differently, taking notes and writing recipes. I traveled to Peru, worked for free at various restaurants, and took classes there too just to learn the culture, the secrets, and the flavors I was in love with. While I was there, I would prepare Cuban food for my wife’s family and for the chefs and cooks at those places. Nineteen61 accomplished exactly what I wanted it to. It tells a story without describing one culture; it expresses what we have become. In 1961, my family fled Cuba to escape the perils of Castro. In 2005, my wife left her family to start her own, 2,500 miles away. Both had to Ieave their comforts, friends, material possessions, and the lives they were built on. They had to adapt to the U.S. in culture, foods,
differences in resources, etc. So, with all that said, I spent four years in Lakeland, cooking all over town, expressing my love for Latin food and its flavors. We used local farms one time; other times people asked me for a more Latin flare. As I prepared food and struggled to keep my Cuban heritage at bay, I started inserting flair into it. That showed me how abundant Lakeland was and how there were so many gems right in our backyard. So, the name became a symbol or question for many who come to the restaurant and ask what it means. It means change, adaptation, love and culture. TL: How does that inspiration directly impact your menu? Chef Marcos: Our menu has to be Latin inspired. We can create French food so long as its interpretation is Latin. Like our Foie Gras De Torchon with Green Papaya Jam and Shortbread. We smoke our chicken (a Lakeland staple), but we finish it with cumin and herbs that give it the natural Latin notes. TL: With your wide-range of experience, why was a modern Latin menu essential for you? Chef Marcos: When I was trying to find my identity as a chef, I knew it was Latin food. I fell in love with Peruvian food way before I was thinking of becoming a chef. Then I took what I knew best and tried to understand it — Cuban food. I met my wife, and the door to Peru was opened. As I spent time in Peru cooking Cuban food for my wife’s family, I also spent time in Peruvian kitchens cooking to understand their flavors. TL: Food Revolution has been a major theme throughout the launch of Nineteen61. How do you incorporate this concept into each dish? Chef Marcos: The Food Revolution is synonymous to the Cuban revolution but in a more positive manner. The idea was to take my experiences as a chef and my family recipes, and all the collaborations of my past chefs and present, and revolutionize the Latin food scene. I wanted to bring food to Lakeland that wasn’t here yet and serve it in the most upscale manner possible for my great city and beat the odds. The idea that Lakelanders drove 45 minutes to Tampa for food was outrageous. So I wrote a business plan that would support our local farms, give you properly raised proteins (mostly), and help make Lakeland a food destination. Take a traditional recipe and make it a new one THE LAKELANDER
with the same solid bones using modern techniques and timetested ones, too. The menu reflects this in every dish. Like the simple filet which is sous vide (a method of treating food by partial cooking followed by vacuum-sealing and chilling) to get a perfect endto-end doneness with a perfect crust on top too, simply served with a reduced veal stock called a glace, paired with a risotto. Or our chicken dish that comes — Chef Marcos from a local farm in Haines City (a heritage breed, too) is broken down (deboned and separated), brined, then smoked, then sous vide. It’s basted and served to order, with pickled onions or escabeche (a traditional Peruvian marinade for fish).
“I WANTED TO BRING FOOD TO LAKELAND THAT WASN’T HERE YET AND SERVE IT IN THE MOST UPSCALE MANNER POSSIBLE FOR MY GREAT CITY AND BEAT THE ODDS.”
TL: How do you hope your food at Nineteen61 impacts the culture of Lakeland? Chef Marcos: Many Lakelanders have never experienced true Latin food. I’m not speaking about Mexican food made in the U.S., but foods with “pow!” flavors that
awaken your taste buds. I want people to have faith in the local restaurants. I want them to know we can give you consistency, quality, and an experience. I want to show them there is more than BBQ and chain restaurants in Lakeland. We have a few local restaurants that are really worth checking out, but we are not as busy as the chains, and that’s a reversal to strive for. TL: Which dishes on the menu remind you of home or hold sentimental value for you? Chef Marcos: Definitely the ropa vieja, the vaca frita, the black beans, and the Cuban sandwich. The ropa was a dish my grandmother made often. Although it never tasted the same twice, the ropa was always very good. I can remember a time in Denver when I cooked at Dazzle Jazz bar as a “celebrity” guest chef (the celebrity part was because I worked at Telemundo as a news anchor, which I was terrible at). They asked me to prepare Cuban food. The event was labeled
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“TAKE A TRADITIONAL RECIPE AND MAKE IT A NEW ONE WITH THE SAME SOLID BONES USING MODERN TECHNIQUES AND TIMETESTED ONES, TOO. THE MENU REFLECTS THIS IN EVERY DISH.” — Chef Marcos
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“Cuban Night.” I phoned my grandmother and asked how to make ropa vieja; then I phoned my mother and asked her how to make black beans. I quickly took both recipes and instantly started to modify them to make them my own, I took the elements that I thought were too harsh and toned them down, but I never perfected them until I moved many years later and began working at country clubs. Regardless, the event was a huge success. The vaca frita is a dish my dad and I always share together when I visit Miami. We always go to the same restaurant, and we both always order the vaca frita. I eat it, and it brings back those few memories of just sharing one-on-one time with him. The black beans is a dish that totally reminds me of Mom. We went back and forth for years on how you never add this and always add that at this moment and, though stubborn at times, I always listened. Of course, I did adapt them a bit, but the heart is still hers. Ahhhh, the infamous Cubano. This is a dish that I always loved as a child. Every Cuban restaurant says theirs is the best, but they all use the same pork, the same ham, bread, and condiments. Naturally, I had to make this iconic staple item my own. We make ours with pigs raised at Mt Citra Farms in Ocala (just for us.) They are guinea hogs, a unique heritage breed. Their meat is sweeter than most store pigs. It lacks that “pork game flavor,” so we make a sour orange aioli instead of just plain ol’ mustard and mayo. The aioli is a derivative of my dad’s special pork marinade during Christmas. Our ham is only Serrano from Spain, the cheese is Manchego instead of Swiss, and, of course, the pickle for ours is a green tomato that is pickled in-house. This [the Cubano] is definitely one emotional zone for me.
Marcos Fernandez, Cem Demirhan , Benjamin Vickers, Anthony Pacheco
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PARTNERSHIP MOVEMENT THERE’S A MOVEMENT AFOOT ACROSS THE COUNTRY: ONE TO INSPIRE EMPLOYEES, STIMULATE INNOVATION, AND FOSTER CREATIVE COLLABORATION AMONG LOCAL BUSINESSES. AND IT STARTS WITH THE ARTS.
By Diana Smith Photography by Daniel Barceló and PMoA Staff
JUST THIS PAST YEAR, the U.S. News & World Report ranked the Lakeland-Winter Haven metro area No. 70 in overall Best Places to Live, and No. 16 in its rankings of The 20 Best Places People are Moving to in the U.S. The 2016 thirdquarter report produced by Cushman & Wakefield (released by the Lakeland Economic Development Council) shows that Polk County’s overall employment increased by 1.4 percent over the last year. Lakeland’s vacancy rate is the lowest in the Tampa Bay region at 4.2 percent, and Lakeland, once again, is leading in new development in the Tampa Bay region. With so much growth and possibility for new consumers and new talent, businesses must keep their brands front and center, maintaining a competitive advantage, to keep up with growing trends in the market. In order to help businesses find new ways to build a competitive edge and address these challenges, Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education, launched The pARTnership Movement in 2012. This national initiative was designed to help businesses understand how the arts can aid in achieving many of their goals. From cultivating a culture that will inspire employees to further business agendas to enhancing your brand and reaching new customers, supporting the arts will inspire ideas and attention. Polk Museum of Art regularly brings in In line with The nationally and internationally known artists and art scholars to speak at pARTnership Movement, opening receptions. businesses are partnering with arts organizations in unique and creative ways. Americans for the Arts provides those national success stories along with a myriad of resources — case studies, comprehensive guides and tools to help develop programs. The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis offers arts-based training through staff development programs that merge law, business, and performing arts. A major supporter of Guthrie’s Continuing Legal Education (CLE) is Faegre Baker Daniels LLP, a general litigation and wealth management firm serving the greater Minneapolis area. Partner John Gordon comments, “Guthrie’s Continuing Legal Education combines the art of theater with the profession of law in a way that is insightful, profound, and practical. Lawyers can learn about themselves, their clients, and their profession in a way they are unable to achieve with other providers of legal education.” Nevada’s NV Energy supports arts and culture initiatives and organizations throughout all of Nevada in a variety of ways. As a long-time supporter of Nevada Museum of Art, NV Energy supports the museum’s membership program by supplying employee volunteers for art openings and other member cultivation events. To engage their employees, NV Energy hosts employee art shows which results in a museum exhibition and company-wide reception. NV Energy’s
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President and CEO Paul Caudill said, “NV Energy believes the arts are essential to the quality of life for all Nevadans wherever they live. The arts build vibrant communities — whether large or small, urban, or rural. Not only are the arts good for communities, they are good for business and are critical to economic diversification, tourism, and educational reform strategies.” Here in our own community, major partnerships like MidFlorida Credit Union’s annual sponsorship of Polk Museum of Art’s Mayfaire by-the Lake and Mosaic’s partnership with Mulberry
Phosphate Museum and the Imperial Symphony Orchestra to produce the Fossils! concert are absolutely necessary to provide major creative community events. While such partnerships should be considered, if possible, smalland medium-sized businesses can incorporate the arts into their strategies without donating tens of thousands of dollars. The Polk Museum of Art and Emily Rogers Consulting have partnered to offer the community Mindful Leadership workshops within the galleries of the Museum. Rogers is a consultant, executive coach, and retreat
leader who strategically advises organizations and individuals in growing and realizing their full potential. In the Mindful Leadership sessions, she asks attendees to examine works of art in the galleries and to use those works to illustrate leadership skills that they would like to cultivate. In sharing these thoughts in a collaborative group, attendees not only come to understand their own interpretations of the artwork and consider their own strengths and weaknesses as a leader, but they also have the opportunity to gain insight from the perspectives of other participants. “Over the past decade,”
shares Rogers, “an increasing number of businesses and organizations have discovered the advantages of incorporating mindfulness into their culture and professional development practices, and it has been my mission to introduce these practices to Lakeland’s leaders. Mindfulness is a transformational practice designed to intentionally cultivate and strengthen the mind’s capacity to be fully present. Museums are an ideal place to escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life, slow down, get present, notice, and be mindful. My intention for the workshop was to invite leaders to explore
REASONS TO PARTNER WITH THE ARTS Employees want to live and work in a vibrant community. Bolster creativity — one of the top applied skills sought by employers. The arts help you build market share, enhance your brand, and reach new customers. The arts create an environment that blends backgrounds, ethnicities, and cultures. The arts help you get your message across in engaging ways. When you partner with the arts, you partner with the whole city. THE LAKELANDER 107
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER EMPLOYEE REWARDS What type of non-monetary rewards does your company currently offer? “The arts build vibrant communities — whether large or small, urban, or rural. Not only are the arts good for communities, they are good for business and are critical to economic diversification, tourism, and educational reform strategies.” — John Gordon, partner, Faegre Baker Daniels LLP
What metrics or methods could you use to measure employee satisfaction with your overall rewards program or any arts-related components?
BRANDING How strong is your corporate image in target markets among both customers and potential employees?
for themselves the possibility of bringing all of their mind’s power to each moment in their lives and work, resulting in enhanced performance, greater productivity, better decision-making, and improved well-being.” Core Wealth Advisors Inc., a boutique financial planning firm, is an example of a small business making major efforts to instill a culture of creativity in their brand. After showcasing works of art by local artists, through Platform Art’s Corporate Art Loan program, Core Wealth Advisors Inc. started collecting their own permanent collection to create a more inviting workspace in downtown Lakeland. Just this year, they started providing their staff with memberships to the Polk Museum of Art as a way to support the Museum’s mission, but also to promote the arts in their personal lives. 108 THE LAKELANDER
They also incorporate the arts into their social events, and promote artists in their marketing materials. Core’s owner Chuck Foss says, “Supporting the arts is a part of our culture for many reasons. Aside from our team’s own individual interests in the arts, we see the clear relationship between a vibrant arts community and a thriving business community. To help promote the arts, we try to create opportunities for our clients and friends to experience the cultural opportunities that Lakeland has to offer. Whether it is a performance at the Lakeland Community Theatre or the Imperial Symphony Orchestra, or an exhibition and lecture at the Polk Museum of Art, we want to share those experiences with our friends and clients. Those experiences can spark insightful and personal conversations that help
What steps can your organization take to gain a competitive advantage by strengthening its reputation as an artistic company, or one that supports the arts? How could your company partner with artists — or take advantage of your employees’ own artistic skills — to improve or extend your brand reputation?
TALENT DEVELOPMENT How important is creativity in your hiring decisions? In what specific ways does your company value creativity? How does your company track and/or reward innovation internally? Innovation can lead to breakthroughs, but doing something in a new and different way inherently carries more risk that taking the tried-and-true approach. Do you penalize failure so severely that employees are discouraged from pursuing creative and innovative but untested solutions to business problems? If so, how can you change that mentality and encourage the sort of risk-taking that leads to major innovations? According to a Culture Works survey, artistic pursuits can help executives become more energetic and creative. How could your company encourage its managers and leaders to deepen their involvement in artistic activities? If you do have employees with strong artistic background/skills, how could you capitalize on their creativity by encouraging innovative efforts?
Chuck Foss (top photo, far right), owner of Core Wealth Advisors Inc. sponsoring a Polk Museum of the Arts event featuring George Lowe (bottom left photo, middle).
develop strong relationships, and our work is based on developing long-lasting relationships. I canâ€™t think of a better way to relate to another person than through the arts.â€? Whether the focus is on building a fresh brand and
creative culture, recruiting, developing and retaining talent, or simply making an impact in your community, partnering with local arts organizations can help you achieve business goals that will allow your business to stand out in a crowded market.
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LAKELAND COMMUNITY THEATREâ€™S
OUT OF THE BOX TROUPE BY KRISTIN CROSBY PHOTOS COURTESY OF LAKELAND COMMUNITY THEATRE
THERE’S A RUSH AN ACTORS GETS WHEN THEY STEP OUT ON STAGE. A HEARTPOUNDING, PALM-SWEATING, GUT-WRENCHING EXCITEMENT — A EUPHORIC FEELING FOR EVEN THE MOST STAGEFRIGHTENED OF ARTISTS. THEY STEP BEHIND THE CURTAIN, HOLD THEIR BREATH AS IT OPENS, NOW BENEATH THE BEAMING LIGHTS, AND THE SHOW BEGINS. FOR LAKELAND COMMUNITY THEATRE’S OUT OF THE BOX TROUPE, THE ANTICIPATION, THE PREPARATION, AND THE THRILL ARE JUST THE SAME.
or the past 30 years Lakeland Community Theatre (LCT) has set the stage for performers in the city. Among its many programs is Out of the Box, created for individuals with special needs, and which, over the past five years, has developed into a theatre experience for artists, regardless of age or learning level. Maureen McGowan has been LCT’s education director for the past six years. She says that Out of the Box is “growing at a more rapid rate than we can … well …” Temporarily at a loss for words, McGowan shares how the successful program, starting with under 20-some performers now works with over 100 active members in each season. She concludes, “Well, obviously there is a need for it.” McGowan oversees all of the theatre’s classes and camps, as well as three youth productions a year. Along with its heavy lineup of Main Stage Productions, Alternative Stage Read Series “The Edge,” and The Eunice Fuller Theatre for Youth, LCT manages to produce shows that engage any eager thespian and entertain any interest. But, particularly for the Out of the Box Troupe, this community theater has tapped into something special.
Performing each spring and fall, Out of the Box Troupe’s productions are always free to the public.
A STAGE SET FOR ALL Often referred to as “a troupe with unique abilities,” Out of the Box is sponsored by GiveWell Community Foundation, as well as individual sponsors and donors, allowing the program to be completely free. “A lot of these programs for specials needs [students] age out of them. There’s nothing for anyone over 18,” says Alan Reynolds, LCT’s artistic and managing director. As a local theatre educator and professional set designer, Reynolds came to LCT with a wealth of experience. After working in the film industry in LA on sets such as True Lies and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (“Back when I could work 18 hours a day,” Reynolds adds), he eventually returned to Lakeland. Having worked with many local schools and churches, Reynolds had seen first-hand the impressionable impact the arts can have on kids with special needs. So when he arrived at LCT, Reynolds knew it was something he needed to bring to the city. “There are always a lot of programs for special needs kids in sports, like basketball and bowling, but for the arts there’s not as much.” When McGowan joined LCT, she and Reynolds quickly found a need among its community of actors for Out of the Box. “In the Polk County school system, once you’re 22 years old, you can no longer be a student,” says McGowan. “So, once that happens, especially for special needs kids, if you’re not into sports or you don’t have a job, all of a sudden you don’t have an outlet anymore.”
JUST LIKE YOU AND ME Since the program has grown, opening its arms (and auditions) to all ages and learning levels, it has caused a ripple effect of enriching numerous lives and families in the community.
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Just this year, the documentary People Like Us premiered at Polk Theatre, following the lives of members from the Out of the Box Troupe. Among the actors highlighted was Emma, sister to the film’s director, Kirsti Mutz. “Kirsti did Annie with us here about six years ago,” says McGowan. “So Emma would come watch rehearsals, and she would follow the moves in the audience. She wanted to be onstage. She wanted to do everything.” Then the Mutzes finally asked us, “Could she ever be in a production here?” By LCT’s next show, James and the Giant Peach, Emma was cast. “And Emma did awesome,” says McGowan. “She blossomed.” Soon after, other parents of special needs began to ask as well, which is when McGowan and Reynolds sat down with those parents to create an arts program catered to such cast members. Yet, in order to work with a wide range of learning levels and ages, and make the production a true team effort, sometimes adjustments need to be made.
ON WITH THE SHOW “Show selection is the one piece that makes this a challenge,” says McGowan. “I have parents that say, ‘Well, can’t we just do Hairspray? Can’t we just do Cats?’” Rather than reaching for grand-scale musicals that would be a leap for a troupe of any scale, Out of the Box focuses on stories approachable for a wide range of ages and learning levels, such as folktales and fractionated fairy tales. “We’re dealing with people for whom we need to make some adaptations. They may not be able to say a huge long line or sing a song with five verses. Maybe we need to shorten that line a little bit, or just sing one verse and sing it really well. We’ve found it’s easier to write pieces for them.” Within its spring and fall semester schedule, LCT’s productions
range from a 12-week to 16-week rehearsal commitments. “The first three or four weeks of classes we do little rotations,” says McGowan. A camouflaged “audition,” students are broken up into small groups, with about 20 minutes of dance, reading, or music, offering a few weeks to explore each student’s potential. “I wish it was like that for the main stage, to be honest,” says McGowan, “because there’s no pressure!” The initial weeks allow students to explore the acting space, break the ice with cast members, and really warm up to the process so that their talents come to surface. McGowan says, “We consider, what are their strengths? Is this somebody who maybe has a hard time getting out lines?’ But, if we give them time, they’re going to get there — they’re going to do it.” “Our job [at LCT],” adds Reynolds, “is not to make the singing and choreography so elevated that they can’t excel. The same thing with Out of the Box. You don’t want the choreography so confusing that a community member can’t do it and can’t do it well. So you have to — she has to [referring to McGowan] — do the same thing that we do on the main stage: Make people look good.”
TEAMWORK TAKES CENTERSTAGE Another support system that bolsters the morale and the energy of the cast are what LCT calls the “typical kids” or “TKs.” “They’re college and high school volunteers, says McGowan. “So there are some kids who have special needs, and some kids who don’t have special needs. And it’s really what makes it work. It never singles anyone out. Everybody sings together. Everybody dances together. But the TKs have a life-changing experience as well. They may be young actors who start out with a little ego, and then they get in the program and see, ‘Ah, it’s not about me. It’s about helping someone else succeed.’” 116 THE LAKELANDER
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“WE’VE REALLY SEEN OUT OF THE BOX GIVE A LOT OF PEOPLE A SENSE OF PURPOSE.”
— Maureen McGowan SHARE THEIR JOURNEY
Be a Rudolph Champion! Heartland for Children is seeking toy drive sponsors & wish list donors for our 12th Annual Rudolph Round-Up Toy Drive for children & teens in Foster Care. CONTACT US (863) 519-8900 x214 firstname.lastname@example.org heartlandforchildren.org/rudolph 118 THE LAKELANDER
“And egos are not exclusive,” interjects Reynolds with a grin. “Egos belong to everyone! I can tell you that right now.” Equipped with one TK to every three members, performances typically include 25 TK volunteers and 75 members working onstage and behind the scenes. The accountability, support, and friendship TKs bring have become an essential component to making the program’s productions a success. “If you have one or two TKs in there,” says Reynolds, “and there’s a dance number and someone is a little behind, then they have a reference point. It’s someone that can feed you your line and help you get back on track. And it’s usually that person that looks like they lost their line. That’s what theatre is — teamwork.” Taking a wide range of individuals through a fully engaged performance production, Out of the Box offers the arts to those who otherwise may not have the opportunity or courage to step out on the stage. “We’ve really seen Out of the Box give a lot of people a sense of purpose,” says McGowan. “We meet once a week, every Thursday afternoon. Then, once we get to our fall and spring show, we add about two weeks of rehearsals.” From set to costume design, to rehearsals and run-throughs, productions are carried through as if it were any other main stage show. “It’s a big experience for them,” says McGowan. Not only does LCT offer a fully baked performance experience, but their developed program instills a learning process that hones lifelong skills and enriches social interaction for everyone. The opportunity for each member to fully engage in a true arts experience has an immediate impact on each of them just as it would any other actor of the stage. It increases spacial awareness, challenges talents and basic social skills, and engages emotional intelligence. For some, the opportunity even creates relationships that last a lifetime. ”We have two couples that are engaged now because they met here. They’re just like you and me. They want to get out and meet people,” says McGowan, clearly beaming.
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“Special needs is the broadest term I could ever imagine,” she continues, “because you have people that could memorize more lines than I ever could, but they face other challenges. Just because some people never gave them a chance, you wouldn’t guess they’d have such strong talents.” “The important thing to remember,” says Reynolds, “is that we do a production and these things culminate in a production. But that’s not the purpose. The purpose is the people, the process, the interaction. It’s like the building process is what makes it: building something together, making something, the teamwork. And then if you come in and watch it, you get that, too. So everyone gets something from it.” With each Out of the Box production where these developed skills and strengthened talents are showcased, a cast brings a story to life onstage, and each member walks away from the experience with a little something new. And so does the audience. Maureen McGowan, LCT’s Educational Director, with cast member Jonathan Humphreys
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LAKELAND COMMUNITY THEATRE 121 South Lake Avenue, Lakeland FL 33801 863.603.7529 · lakelandcommunitytheatre.com Admission to all Out of the Box shows are free.
At Grace Manor, my dad is treated like family. The experienced caregivers and a community of friends have helped to make his transition to assisted living a graceful one. He stays active and lives independently, with help when he needs it. I have peace of mind knowing my dad is loved and cared for. It truly is like family taking care of family.
GRACE MANOR SUITES 4620 N Socrum Loop Rd 863.577.0977 | GraceManorSuites.com Assisted Living Facility License #11995
GRACE MANOR LAKE MORTON 610 E Lime St 863.937.9114 | GraceManorLakeMorton.com Assisted Living Facility License #AL5217
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OPENINGS & COMING SOON
Location: 6220 US Highway 98 North Polk’s first trampoline park holds Olympic-size foams pits and more than 60 trampolines so you can spend hours defying gravity. 2Infinity is an aerial indoor experience with 12,000-plus square feet of connected world-class trampolines. Check out their calendar at 2infinity.us for events and parties.
5TH AND HALL
Location: 1117 South Florida Avenue Inspired by classic 1960s’ Ivy League menswear, this clothing store is already a Lakeland fashion staple. With a frequent rotation of fresh options, 5th and Hall offers current street trends year-round.
BULK NATION Location: 4019 US Highway 98 North A Tampa-franchise grocer that specializes in bulk foods ranging from grains, organic flours, sweets, and Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free products.
COB & PEN
Location: 1221 South Florida Avenue The stately Tudor house in Dixieland is already another go-to gathering spot for the city. Serving craft beers and fine food, this smoke-free bar is all about keeping good company.
H&M Location: 3800 US Highway 98 North The affordable retailer that quickly delivers high-end runway looks to the masses just opened at the Lakeland Square Mall. No longer will you need to drive an hour to Tampa or Orlando to shop this Swedish multinational clothing company.
JITTERS COFFEE CAFE
Location: 3800 US 98 Highway North This coffee café offers fresh, espresso-based products and refreshing teas.
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Stationery Loft’s new downtown location
LITTLE GREEK FRESH GRILL
Location: 4756 South Florida Avenue Tampa-based, fast and casual, this Greek restaurant serves a variety of authentic Mediterranean appetizers and entrees.
MAGNOLIA POPCORN Location: 248 North Kentucky Avenue An array of delicious gourmet popcorns and more!
POSTO 9 GASTROPUB
Location: 215 East Main Street Date: Winter 2016 An upscale Brazilian restaurant, this latest installment of fine dining in Lakeland already has a waiting list. Featuring an evolving seasonal menu, this $4 million project will hold three levels, including a rooftop lounge, each floor with its own kitchen prepared to appease palettes arriving in the masses.
WAWA MASONS LIVE Location: 5501 South Florida Avenue Lakeland’s latest live music venue, this spot features a spacious patio bar, serves a crafted bar menu, and offers entertainment ranging from karaoke to trivia nights.
STATIONERY LOFT Location: 230 North Kentucky Avenue This stationery and gift shop is the perfect destination for all your wedding and party invitation needs. In its newly renovated location, the floors above also include event venue space (already booked for New Year’s Eve).
COMING SOON LAKELAND ESCAPE ROOM
Location: 308 East Pine Street Date: December 2016 If you’re an avid gamer, always up for a challenge, this latest entertainment destination just might be the thrill you’re seeking. Part game, part story-telling, part team-building, the Escape Room is a logicbased, real-life game. Solve mysteries and escape a room in a set timeframe. Sure to liven up your next date night or family outing.
Location: 3105 US 98 South Date: 2016 This popular one-stop for coffee, fresh food, and fuel services will soon open its second location in Lakeland. Added WaWa bonus: fee-free ATMs!
MOVING TOP BUTTONS UPSCALE THRIFT BOUTIQUE
New Location: 236 North Kentucky Avenue Grand Opening on January 21, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. A nonprofit organization purposed to promote positive body image, healthy self-esteem, and modesty among young women. Top Buttons programs offers styling services, confidence-boosting educational sessions, and a wardrobe of properly fitted attire to at-risk girls in our community. 100% of the proceeds from the boutique go back into this nonprofit organization. Open for public shopping EVERY SATURDAY from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Donations may be dropped off at the boutique during public shopping hours.
LEAVE THEM WITH CHERISHED MEMORIES,
not financial and emotional burdens. Pre-planning is one of the greatest gifts you can give your family. Plan your service down to the last detail, including financial arrangements. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation. Family-owned and operated by the Heath family since 1959.
863.682.0111 328 S. Ingraham Ave., Lakeland heathfuneralchapel.com
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“Your Pets, Our Pets”
. Wellness Plans . Advanced Medical Care . Laser Surgery . Chinese Medicine . Exotic Pet Care . Boarding and Spa Services
2225 Drane Field Rd. Lakeland
Find us on Facebook
Resort Style Living Resort Style Swimming Pool & Hot Tub Yoga/Meditation Room Playground Pet Park
Indoor FitnessClub including Gym & Indoor Racquetball Court Relaxing Hammock Pavillion 1,2,3 Bedroom Rentals
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LAW OFFICES OF
TED W. WEEKS IV, P.A. LAWSUITS & DISPUTES | CORPORATE & BUSINESS LAW
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Looking along Pine Street from the intersection with Kentucky Avenue in Lakeland, Florida. On the right of the photo is Bob’s Pawn Shop housed in the iconic Clonts Building, one of the city’s oldest commercial buildings. 1959
Photo Courtesy of Special Collections, Lakeland Public Library
Don’t tackle tax season by yourself. Jim D. Lee, CPA
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Call today for an appointment 863.686.7330 Or visit our office in the Lake Aston Sales Center Tuesdays & Thursdays beginning February 3 THE LAKELANDER 125
RECURRING EVENTS EVERY TUESDAY NIGHT PUB RUN @ RED DOOR LAKELAND 6:15 p.m. - 7 p.m.
EVERY WEDNESDAY DIXIELAND TWILIGHT MARKET 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.
EVERY SATURDAY MORNING MITCHELL’S PUB RUN 7 a.m. - 8 a.m.
EVERY SATURDAY MORNING BLACK & BREW FUN RUN 8 a.m. - 9 a.m.
EVERY SATURDAY DOWNTOWN FARMERS CURB MARKET 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. DECEMBER DECEMBER 20 - JANUARY 1 PUBLIC ICE SKATING lakelandcenter.com
DECEMBER 27 MOSCOW BALLET GREAT RUSSIAN NUTCRACKER thelakelandcenter.com
Downtown Farmers Curb Market
JANUARY 11 THE STATE BALLET THEATRE OF RUSSIA PRESENTS SWAN LAKE thelakelandcenter.com
JANUARY 27 MINDFUL LEADERSHIP polkmuseumofart.org
JANUARY JANUARY 2 42ND STREET thelakelandcenter.com
JANUARY 13 POINT OF VIEW GALLERY TALK: DR. ALEX RICH polkmuseumofart.org
JANUARY 4 PRESLEY, PERKINS, LEWIS, AND CASH thelakelandcenter.com
JANUARY 15 LAKELAND WATER SKI CLUB’S SHOW AT LAKE HOLLINGSWORTH 2 p.m. lakelandwaterskiclub.com
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JANUARY 20 - 29 FOREVER PLAID lakelandcommunitytheatre.com
All Creatures Animal Clinic NOW ACCEPTING PATIENTS!
Little Squares of Heaven. (and pretty much everything else on the menu, too!) Welcome to your “other” family doctor! All Creatures Animal Clinic has worked hard to not only gain the reputation of being an exceptional medical facility, but also to become an integral part of the families we serve. We are committed to always making time for our clients and providing compassionate care in a cutting-edge medical environment. In addition, we also offer alternative medicine options which include chiropractic care,6/28 laser, and a hydrotherapy pool. Our clinic recently earned AAHA accreditation, a KEISER distinction awarded to the top 12-15% of animal hospitals in the United– Lakeland 231-1627-LakeL-Devoted-3x4 States and Canada. We are also a certified Cat Friendly Practice. Pets are our passion, and keeping them healthy is our #1 priority. Lakelander
2306 E. Edgewood Dr. | 863-450-2986
3.875 x 4.75
HOURS: Mon & Thurs - 7am - 7pm / Tues, Wed, Fri - 7am - 5:30pm / Sat PK - 8am - Noon
(863) 646 - 5683
6/17 1019 W PIPKIN RD LAKELAND, FL 33811
Devoted Scholars. Committed to Community.
SMALL BOXES CAN MAKE A
Marshall Jewelers 2535 S. Florida Ave. | Southgate Shopping Center
863.682.4725 Associate I Bachelor’s I Master’s I Doctoral
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Since 1972 We’ve treated them like family.
Schedule your tour today and experience the beauty of a classical, Christian K4-12 education 863.644.1408 or genevaclassicalacademy.com
LOCATED IN DOWNTOWN LAKELAND
244 North Kentucky Avenue (863) 225-‐2426 ScoutandTag.com
Scout & Tag is a blend of urban industrial design showcasing hand-‐painted furnishings, vintage finds, home décor and unique local artisan gifts! In addition, we are the exclusive local stockist of Chalk Paint® decorative paint by Annie Sloan and home of Rafa Natural Bath & Body.
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• Comprehensive Medical Services • Professionsal Grooming & Stying • Comfortable & Spacious Lodging • AAHA Accredited 3710 Cleveland Heights Boulevard 863.646.2995 pethospital.com
Kids Ark International Youth Camp is a Lakeland-based non-profit ministry designed to sponsor children in many different ways. One important aspect of a child’s life is Education: Kids Ark International is committed to equip underprivileged children in the area of Education so they too can have an equal chance to learn.
åFAST åEASY PROCESSING å100% TAX DEDUCTIBLE kidsarkintl.org • 863-660-1003 • email@example.com
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CENTURY-STORAGE.COM 4 CONVENIENT LAKELAND LOCATIONS THE LAKELANDER 129
Date: 1951 A few kids wait outside the Polk Theatre to see Jim Thorpe: All American starring Burt Lancaster. Polk Theatre opened in December 1928. Photo courtesy of Lakeland Public Library 130 THE LAKELANDER
EXPERIENCED MINDS handling
COMPLEX MATTERS Since 1948, Peterson & Myers has provided experienced legal advice to help our clients’ innovative ideas become a reality. We believe each client deserves attorneys who create learned, practical, individualized solutions in a constantly changing and complex environment. Please call us or visit our website today for more information about our time-tested legal experience.
PETERSONMYERS.COM • 863.683.6511 • LAKELAND | WINTER HAVEN | LAKE WALES
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A tradition of
healthcare excellence continues.
As we say goodbye to 2016, all of us at Watson Clinic reflect on the gift of serving our community for 75 years, and remain committed to exceeding the healthcare needs of you and your family for many years to come.
www.WatsonClinic.com | 863-680-7000 | Follow us on: