Island Estates homeowners attended the civic association’s first annual Halloween Parade this morning. The route down Island Way started and ended at the Island Estates Publix Supermarket. It was led by president Mary Lau who was followed by children and adults in costume, pets, and family and friends not in any Halloween attire.
On Thursday, I was pleased to have been invited to attend the Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Community Services annual banquet at Ruth Eckerd Hall. The banquet focuses on “the many faces” the agency helps and honors community leaders for their service. This year, Gladys Schutz and William “Bill” Israel were recognized for their many contributions to the community and the agency. Mrs. Schutz has been affiliated with Gulf Coast since 1996 and has been a strong advocate for its programs. Bill Israel has served on the board for 36 years and is currently the co-chairman of the agency’s Jewish Family Services Advisory Council. Bay News 9 anchor Anne Imanuel was the emcee, and board chairman Jay Miller and CEO Rochelle Tatrai-Ray also spoke about the work of the agency whose mission is to “provide essential human services to individuals and families in times of need.”
Today, the Sea Dog Brewery Restaurant at 26200 US 19 North officially opened as Cody’s Original Roadhouse. Cody’s had been located behind the Sea Dog property, but has now moved onto the site directly on US 19 North. The Sea Dog Brewery will continue to produce its award-winning beer on site, as well as serve its beers at Cody’s and adjacent Sea Dog Tasting Room. Today, the Chamber of Commerce and the Clearwater City Council participated in a ribbon-cutting to open officially the renovated restaurant.
October 15 was celebrated in Clearwater as “White Cane Safety Day,” and I joined several residents who are blind or visually impaired, local Lions Club International members, and the Pinellas Chapter of the Florida Council for the Blind to walk from Crest Lake Park down Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard. Remember that Florida Statute 316 says that a person with a white cane or guide dog always has the right-of-way.
Downtown Clearwater’s Coachman Park was the scene for yesterday’s Hispanic Heritage Festival sponsored by the City of Clearwater and Maxima 92.5. From the early afternoon until the evening, there park was teeming with thousands as the entertainers performed throughout the day. There was a huge fireworks display to end the evening. Clearwater has one of the largest concentrations of Hispanic-Americans in the Tampa Bay area, and the Maxima 92.5 festival attracts people from all over central Florida. Florida’s Lt. Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera also came to enjoy the music and to mingle with the spectators.
The 2014 Challenger Little League District Jamboree was held at the newly renovated Sid Lickton fields in Clearwater this weekend. Today’s opening ceremony was attended by US Representative David Jolly, State Representatives Ed Hooper and Kathleen Peters, and me. Other present included Chris Latvala and mascots Raymond, Phinley, DJ, and Spiderman. Thank you to all the sponsors who support the Challenger Little League, and especially to the Clearwater Civitan Club which operates the concession stand and welcomes all the teams, including the one pictured from Haines City.
Boley Centers, Inc., the leading provider of residential services in Pinellas County for adults with severe and persistent mental illness, opened its Sunset Point Apartments complex in Clearwater on Friday. The 14 unit complex contains one-bedroom apartments and a common area between the two buildings. US Representative David Jolly and I were special guests for the event which was attended by several Boley Centers, Inc. board members and its president/ceo Gary MacMath.