Ring in the year with Pinellas Park's orchestra
The Pinellas Park Civic Orchestra, under the direction of Richard VanDommelen, will perform its first concert of the new year at 7:30 p.m. Sunday at the Pinellas Park Performing Arts Theatre, 4951 78th Ave. N. The orchestra, a pops symphony orchestra, plays light classics, Broadway tunes and more. Concerts on the first Sunday of each month are free, but donations are always appreciated. For more information, call (727) 397-3832.
ST. PETE BEACH
Community yard sale is place to sell your stuff
The city of St. Pete Beach is hosting its first communitywide yard sale of the new year from 8 a.m. to noon Jan. 22 at the St. Pete Beach Community Center, 7701 Boca Ciega Drive. Start 2011 out right by cleaning out your garage and closet to make some extra cash. Spaces are $10 for St. Pete Beach residents and $12.50 for nonresidents. Registration begins Monday. Visit the recreation office or call (727) 363-9245 to reserve your spot.
Nighttime golf scramble puts skills to a test
Golfers are invited to participate in Glow Golf on Jan. 12 at Treasure Bay Golf and Tennis facility, 10315 Paradise Blvd. Registration will be from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. The scramble will begin at 6:45 p.m. Hot dogs, chips and soft drinks will be provided. Golfers may sign up as a foursome or a single; $20 per player. Advance registration is required. Call Treasure Bay Golf and Tennis at (727) 360-6062 for more information or to register.
Five-week course teaches 'mindfulness'
The Florida Community of Mindfulness and Unitarian Universalist Church of St. Petersburg are offering a five-week course, "Awakening to Life," designed to support the practice of mindfulness. Participants will learn about mindfulness of the breath, physical sensations, emotions, thoughts and the "bigger" mind. Classes are from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, beginning Tuesday through Feb. 8, (no class on Jan. 18), at Unitarian Universalist Church of St. Petersburg, 719 Arlington Ave. N. Course fee is $50. To register, e-mail Angie Parrish at email@example.com or call the church at (727) 898-3294.
Swing in the New Year with dance at Coliseum
Swingin' the New Year, a grand New Year's Eve celebration for all ages, will be from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Friday at the St. Petersburg Coliseum, 535 Fourth Ave. N. Get a little practice in from 8 to 9 p.m. with swing dance lessons (no partner needed). The celebration includes a vintage fashion photo shoot, dance performances, party favors, prize giveaways, full cash bar with champagne bottles and much more. $24 in advance or $29 day of event. Purchase advance tickets online at tampabayswing.com, or by calling (813) 579-4645 or in person at the Coliseum box office from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Call (813) 579-4645 or (727) 892-5202.
Financial seminar gets money matters in order
Pinellas County Extension, at 12520 Ulmerton Road, is offering a workshop to enhance skills in establishing and meeting financial goals for 2011 and beyond. The free three-part seminar will include: Focus on Finances, beginning from 6 to 8 p.m. Jan. 11, with subsequent sessions on Jan. 18 and Jan. 25. Participants are encouraged to attend all three sessions as new topics will be discussed at each meeting. Participants who attend each session will be eligible to receive free, one-on-one financial counseling. To register or for more information, visit pinellascountyextension.org or call (727) 582-2100.
Learn how to recycle and dispose of items
For comprehensive information on recycling and safe disposal of just about anything, check out the A to Z Guide for Recycling and Disposal in Pinellas County by visiting pinellascounty.org/utilities/ getridofit. Topics include document shredding services, where to donate food, vehicles, eyeglasses and hearing aids, how to recycle dangerous items such as computers and chemicals, where to take appliances and yard waste, and times and dates of local mobile collection events. Direct questions to Pinellas County Utilities Solid Waste Operations at (727) 464-7500 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Donate goodies to help troops away from home
Troops in the Middle East need candy, cookies, microwave popcorn, peanut butter, crackers, canned fruits and meats, flavored soft drink mix, beef jerky, small microwavable products, women's hygiene products, baby wipes, lip balm, sunscreen, bandannas, socks, resealable plastic food-storage bags and cotton swabs. Donations can be dropped off at the Army Recruiting Office at 11223 78th Ave. N, Seminole; VFW Post 4256 at 12901 Gulf Blvd., Madeira Beach; VFW Post 9272 at 10997 72nd Ave. N, Seminole; American Legion Post 7 at 1760 Turner St., Clearwater; and Extra Space Storage at 4319 Duhme Road, Madeira Beach. Cash donations are also needed to cover shipping. Checks should be made payable to UPS Store and mailed to P.O. Box 86223, Madeira Beach, FL 33738. For information, call Joe Tapp at (727) 432-1057.
Show state pride with a song contest entry
Each year since 1992, the Will McLean Foundation has sponsored the Best New Florida Song Contest. Contestants are asked to submit a song, or three, about the history heritage, natural beauties and "critters" of Florida. Entrants need not be skilled musicians; the songs are not judged on the slickness of their presentation. But a good recording showcases the song at its best. Winners will be invited to perform at the annual Will McLean Music Festival in March. The fee is $10 per song, and the deadline to enter is Friday. For information, visit willmclean.com or call (352) 589-6027.
Church collecting gear to ward off cold weather
The People That Love Church and Mission provides necessities to the homeless, working poor and disabled. It needs winter gear, including blankets, comforters, sleeping bags, sweaters, jackets, socks, head wear, gloves, long pants and shirts for all ages.
Also needed for the shelter are disposable razors, spray deodorant, men's underwear and long johns. Your donations can be brought or sent to: The People That Love Church and Mission, 817 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg, FL 33701. For information, call (727) 421-3745.
Clothes To Kids seeks warm clothes for boys
Clothes To Kids needs warm clothes for boys. These items, along with any other clothing donations, can be dropped off between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at two Clothes To Kids locations:
• St. Petersburg, 3251 Third Ave. N, Suite 145.
• Clearwater, 1059 N Hercules Ave.
Cash donations are also welcome. Clothes To Kids is a nonprofit that provides free clothing to low-income, school-age children in Pinellas County. For information, call (727) 441-5050 or visit ClothesToKids.org.
AARP Tax-Aide needs volunteer tax preparers
The AARP Tax-Aide program seeks volunteers to prepare federal tax returns. Volunteers receive IRS-certified training (five or six days in January) and reimbursement for mileage. Computer knowledge is necessary. A minimum commitment of four hours a week during February, March and early April is required. For details, visit aarp.org/taxaide.
Database signup can help in an emergency
Give your loved one the gift of peace of mind for the holidays by registering emergency contact information with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.
The Emergency Contact Information program allows licensed drivers and identification card holders to submit two contacts to notify in the event of an emergency, such as a vehicle crash.
The information can be accessed only in the case of an emergency by law enforcement officers.
Registration can be completed in a state or a tax collector-operated driver's license office or at flhsmv.gov/eci. There is no cost to register.
Dog obedience classes start the year off right
Do you have behavior problems with your dog? The Highland Recreation Complex is offering dog obedience classes, for beginner and intermediate training levels.
Beginner classes, for dogs 10 weeks and older, will teach basic commands such as sit, down, stay and walk. The six-week course, offered on Tuesday mornings or Thursday nights, begins Jan. 11 and Jan. 13. The cost is $65 for residents, $81.50 for nonresidents and $99.50 for individuals who do not have a Largo recreation card.
Intermediate classes for dogs 5 months and older, will teach distance, duration and help dogs overcome distractions. Classes begin March 10 and April 28. All classes are at the Highland Recreation Complex, 400 Highland Ave., Largo. For more information, visit Highland Recreation.com or call (727) 518-3016.
Elks seeking vendors for January flea market
Vendors are needed for the Seminole Elks Lodge No. 2519 Flea Market from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 8 at the lodge, 10717 Seminole Blvd. The cost is $20 for one space with a table. Open to the public. For information, contact Debbie Farris at email@example.com or (727) 559-0035.
Submit names for Day of Good Deeds help
If you have a friend or neighbor who could use help with minor household chores, light yard maintenance or repairs, the city of Largo wants to hear from you. The city is gearing up for the eighth annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Good Deeds, and city staffers are collecting names of those in need. The program will begin at the new Largo Community Center, 400 Alt. Keene Road, and volunteers will be dispatched throughout the community from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 15. In conjunction with the Day of Good Deeds, a volunteer fair with live entertainment and a barbecue lunch also will be held.
To register someone to receive a deed or to serve as a volunteer, call (727) 518-3131.