Tuesday, June 19, 2018
News Roundup

Hometown Pasco for Feb. 9

 

Courtesy of Betty Burke

Rotary club has busy December:

December was a busy month for the Rotary Club of San Antonio as members worked to bring Christmas cheer to children in the community. On Dec. 9, members joined other Rotarians to pack food bags to be distributed by local schools for students during the Christmas break. The 50 food bags packed by club members were earmarked for San Antonio Elementary School and Irvin Education Center. Rotarians volunteered to ring the Salvation Army bell in front of the San Antonio Post Office from Dec. 11 to 15. Two community service events were held Dec. 16. Club members, along with family members, sorted and distributed socks, underwear and toothbrushes to parents attending the Toys for Tots event in Wesley Chapel. In Dade City, girls in the mentoring group sponsored by the club and Farmworkers Self Help shopped for Christmas gifts for family and friends (and themselves). The girls, called Las Mariposas (the butterflies), earned points by attending group meetings, reading books, attending dance classes and performances, and doing service projects during the year. The points can be used to purchase items on June and December shopping days. Shopping day items are donated by club members, local church groups and friends of Farmworkers Self Help. To show their appreciation, the girls sang Christmas songs during the club’s meeting Dec. 19, and each girl received a gift bag from club member Ginny Clemmons. Shown are volunteers helping at the Toys for Tots event. From left are: Sarah Christiansen, club member; Winnie Burke, club president; Bob Loring, honorary club member, and Hannah Schuck.

Courtesy of Jane VanHorn

Preschoolers receive gifts from ladies golf group:

For the 17th year, members of the Summertree Ladies Golf League purchased gifts for teacher Michelle Blom’s Head Start pre-kindergarten class at Hudson Elementary School. On Dec. 15, a group of members delivered gifts to the school, where Santa helped pass out the gifts. Each student received a gift and a goodie bag.

Courtesy of Pasco County Public Information

Eco-friendly art event:

Approximately 5,000 attended the third annual Pasco Upcycle and Art Festival held in downtown New Port Richey’s Sims Park. Families strolled through the park and visited the 100 or so vendors that amazed the crowd with creativity: designing wall art pallets, driftwood frames, glass bottle clocks and dozens of other uniquely-upcycled items. A traditional art component was added to this year’s festival, giving local painters an opportunity to showcase their talents. We have worked hard to keep an eco-friendly, grass-roots vibe for the event, said Kristen King, Keep Pasco Beautiful coordinator. It’s wonderful to see so many environmentally-conscious people in one place.

 

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Christopher Hunter of Trinity recently published his first book, entitled Seagrass Surprise. The children’s story follows Jack and Jenny, brother and sister, and their dog, Sandy, on an outdoor adventure to Hopscotch Island. Their outdoor adventure, involving manatees, turns into an environmental mission as the children explore the natural world around them, putting conservation biology into action. Hunter supports Tampa Bay Watch and its mission to restore the Tampa Bay estuary. He teaches international environmental politics and policy at the University of Tampa. For information, visit seagrasssurprise.com.

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Emma Meyers, 16, of Trinity, a member of the U. S. Tap Dance Team, recently returned from Riesa, Germany, where she competed at the World Tap Championships. After being selected for a place on the team at auditions last summer, Meyers and two other dancers represented the United States at the competition, also known as the "Olympics of tap dance." The formation group number, "Newsies," took fifth place. Shown is Meyers performing her solo Can’t Touch This routine. Meyers has studied all genres of dance since the age of 3, but is passionate about tap dancing. Emma is the daughter of Gina and John Meyers of Trinity.

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Sertoma Speech & Hearing Foundation recently held its annual "Las Vegas Casino Night" fundraiser at the Seven Springs Golf and Country Club in New Port Richey. Visitors enjoyed gaming, auctions, dancing, dinner and a wide variety of music throughout the evening. All proceeds from the event, more than $6,000, benefit the Children’s Hearing Help Fund that is supported by the Sertoma Foundation. CHHF encourages drivers who are renewing their license or motor vehicle registration to "check the box" for CHHF and add a dollar or more to the fee. That amount, then, is donated to Sertoma. The mission of Sertoma Speech and Hearing Foundation is to enhance individual potential and quality of life through better hearing.

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During the month of October, Pasco County Tax Collector Mike Fasano’s five offices partnered with the Florida Breast Cancer Foundation to help raise funds and awareness of breast cancer, its symptoms and treatments. October, which was national Breast Cancer Awareness Month, was the perfect time to feature the sale of the Foundation’s "End Breast Cancer" specialty tag. It is estimated that about 12,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed each year. The five branches of the Pasco County Tax Collector’s Office promoted the sale of the specialty license plates as well as the voluntary check-off donations on automobile registrations. Forty-two plates were sold in October. Combined with cash donations, a total of $7,822.68 was raised. From left are: Janet Oroz, Land O’Lakes executive assistant; Michelle Vancuren, director of branch operations; Sharlo Ward, customer service supervisor; Russell Silverman, Florida Breast Cancer Foundation executive director; Linda McNally, Dade City office manager; Megan Aguiar, Land O’Lakes customer service representative; and Tax Collector Fasano.

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In early December, members of the six local Rotary clubs gathered at Magnolia Valley Park in New Port Richey to work on a collective renovation and clean-up project for its residents and community. The park was neglected, run down and unsafe for residents and children to use. On Dec. 2, 85 volunteers, including the Rotarians, arrived to work. Luke Walker, president of the Rotary Club of Seven Springs, spearheaded the project. He and five West Pasco Rotary club presidents each contributed club funds toward a grant that Rotary District 6950 matched, which ultimately provided $6,500 for the project. Volunteers cleared out a drainage ditch overgrown with weeds and filled with trash, stained and installed three wooden picnic tables in the pavilion, cleaned up the playground area, installed a new jungle gym and swing set, and trimmed trees and shrubbery. Pasco County supplied a 40-yard dumpster and removed a fallen oak tree. The park is owned by the civic association. The West Pasco Rotary clubs, known as the Westside Six, include: Holiday, Hudson, New Port Richey, Port Richey, Seven Springs and Trinity. At the completion of the project, a "Welcome to Magnolia Valley Park" sign was ceremoniously unveiled by Walker recognizing the clubs, date of the project and the Rotary signature emblem. Many local businesses contributed to the project by offering services, volunteers or food.

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On Dec. 13, members of Spring Hill Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie 4208 and its Ladies Auxiliary in Hudson presented a check for $725 to the West Pasco Pregnancy Center in New Port Richey, which provides a number of free services to pregnant women. Funds for the donation were proceeds during the month-long fundraiser called Labor of Love. In recognition of September’s Labor Day and in reference to pregnancy labor, aerie and auxiliary members make monetary donations throughout the month of September to benefit the center. In addition, members also donated clothing, diapers and other needed items. Standing in back, from left, are: Diane Irwin, auxiliary president; Barbara Cyr; Tammi Howlett; Barbara Danciak; Diane Wright; and Barbara Cole. In front from left, are: Linda Erb; Gail Beaudoin, aerie president; Judy DeBella-Thomas, West Pasco Pregnancy Center CEO; Marlene Thomas; Ann Krysheski; Ana Mahar; and Barbara Fitzpatrick.

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Pasco-Hernando State College’s winter commencement, held Dec. 14, included presentations of two $10,000 donations to scholarships provided by Dr. Rao Musunuru, PHSC district board of trustees chairman and local cardiologist. The two scholarship donations were given to the PHSC Foundation in honor of state Senator Wilton Simpson and Pat Mulieri. Simpson, speaker for the morning ceremony, was recognized for his efforts in supporting PHSC students. Musunuru contributed $10,000 to the Gloria and Wayne Simpson endowed scholarship fund that Sen. Simpson established in 2014 in honor of his parents. Sen. Simpson also was inducted into PHSC’s Legislative Hall of Fame. Patricia Mulieri, PHSC Professor Emerita and the afternoon commencement ceremony speaker, was recognized for her dedication to PHSC and district residents by Musunuru with a $10,000 contribution to the newly established Patricia Hans Mulieri and James Mulieri Scholarship fund. Mulieri, and her husband, James, are contributing an additional $15,000 for a $25,000 total scholarship fund reserved for PHSC students, 30 years of age or older with an interest in pursuing a degree in education. From left are: PHSC President Timothy L. Beard, Ph.D.; Patricia Mulieri, Ed.D, PHSC professor emerita; and Dr. Rao Musunuru, PHSC chair, District Board of Trustees.

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GFWC Lutz-Land O’Lakes Woman’s Club recently announced the installation of Karin D’Amico for her second consecutive term as president. D’Amico was honored at the club’s recent Christmas luncheon for her past term of service. Her new slogan is "Striving to Reach Out and Serve". For information, visit gfwclutzlandolakeswomansclub.org.

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On Dec. 10, Florida Skating Academy hosted its annual Hawaiian Holiday Show at SpinNations Skating Center in Port Richey. Members of the academy’s gold, silver and bronze levels participated, including the Golden Rollers Retirees. Shown are members of the bronze class, including Kyleigh Mizell, Rachael Wren, Angelina Fotopoulos, Mia Berkstresser, Illiana Fotopoulos, Dylan Lemmons, Julissa Lenco, Ariana Matias, Brody Romann, Becky Sleeman, Chason Waltman, Cailyn Ellinwood, Sophie Kirsch, Ella Kelly, Hailie Lott, Victoria Ingalls and McKinley Mays.

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Zephyrhills Mayor Gene Whitfield recently recognized Raymond B. Stewart Middle School’s football team for winning 41 consecutive games and seven conference titles.

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Wade Thomas and the Thomas and Son dealership, recently presented a $2,000 donation to help cover registration fees for the Zephyrhills High School Bulldog cheerleaders to attend the Florida National High School Cheerleading Championship at Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Feb. 9-11. After qualifying for the competition, the team needed to raise funds for registration, lodging and meals, as well as recreational expenses. Thomas and Son has been a strong supporter of the school’s students and its athletics department for years. "I didn’t want any of the cheerleaders to have to stay home because they didn’t have the funds," Thomas said. "It’s important to us that they all get to go and represent Zephyrhills. They all worked for it; they all should be able to go."

 

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Hometown Pasco

 

HIGH FIVES

Assistant Tax Collector appointed to nominating council: Pasco Tax Collector Mike Fasano recently announced that Greg Giordano, assistant tax collector, has been appointed to the Florida Public Service Commission Nomination Council for a four-year term expiring in 2022. The council’s responsibility is to review all applicants for openings on the commission and determine at least three who meet the qualifications to serve on that body. The council then forwards the names to the governor who makes the final selection. The state Senate then must confirm the governor’s appointment.

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Trinity resident publishes children’s book: Photo: pashometown020918-A Courtesy of Christopher Hunter

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Dancer represents USA in World Tap Championships: Photo: pashometown020918-B Courtesy of Scott Bloome Photography

 

CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS

Saint Leo University receives recognition: For the fifth consecutive year, Saint Leo University earned recognition from Military Advanced Education & Transition as a leader in the nation for providing education to those who are serving or who have served in the armed forces. Military Advanced Education & Transition awarded Saint Leo the designation of a Top School in its 2018 Guide to Colleges & Universities, measuring best practices in military and veteran education.

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Sertoma Foundation holds successful fundraiser: Photo: pashometown020918-C Courtesy of Debra Golinski

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Almost $8,000 raised for Florida Breast Cancer Foundation: Photo: pashometown020918-D Courtesy of Greg Giordano

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Rotarians take on clean-up project at park: Photo: pashometown020918-E Courtesy of J David Wright

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Eagle members support pregnancy center: Photo: pashometown020918-F Courtesy of Ana Mahar

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Dignitaries honored by Dr. Rao Musunuru at PHSC winter commencement: Photo: pashometown020918-G Courtesy of Courtney Boettcher

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Woman’s club installs president for a second term: Photo: pashometown020918-H Courtesy of Patricia Serio

 

RECREATION AND SPORTS

Skating academy hosts annual holiday show: Photo: pashometown020918-I Courtesy of Angela Serini

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Middle school football team recognized: Photo: pashometown020918-J Courtesy of Linda Cobbe

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Local dealership helps cheerleaders attend competition: Photo: pashometown020918-K Courtesy of Gary S. Hatrick

 

We want your news!

Hometown Pasco is devoted to everyday life in our county, whether it’s snapshots from your family reunion, recreational sporting event, news from your last club meeting or just a few lines thanking someone for a job well done. You can contact Hometown Pasco news coordinator Jean Hamilton at: PHONE (352) 848-1438, FAX (352) 754-6133, E-MAIL [email protected]

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