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Hernando business digest for Feb. 26


IHOP restaurant, 3660 Commercial Way, Spring Hill, will sponsor Friends Friday Night fundraisers on the second Friday of each month to support the Friends of Weeki Wachee Springs State Park.

For customers who mention Friends of Weeki Wachee on those nights, IHOP will donate 15 percent of their bill to the organization.

For information, call the restaurant at (352) 683-5525.

• • •

Vendors are needed for Hernando Marketplace — Discover Your Hometown Treasures.

The event, designed to promote local businesses, will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 2 at the soccer complex at Anderson Snow Park, 1360 Anderson Snow Road, Spring Hill. Sponsors are Hernando County Parks and Recreation, the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce, the St. Petersburg Times and Hernando Today.

If registration is complete by Friday, vendor fees for businesses and nonprofit organizations are $75 for chamber members and $100 for nonmembers. Fees for restaurants and food vendors are $125 for chamber members and $150 for nonmembers. Fees for networking groups are $100.

Food vendors must be licensed. Electric service will be available for food vendors for an additional $15 for two outlets (110 volts); limited 220-volt service is available for $30.

All registration fees increase after Friday.

The exhibit area for businesses and nonprofits is 10 by 10 feet; the area for restaurants and food vendors is 10 by 20 feet. Vendors will be responsible for providing tent, table and chairs. Food vendors are responsible for providing extension cords.

For registration information, contact the chamber at (352) 796-0697.

• • •

The Small Business Development Center at the University of South Florida has partnered with the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce to provide free business consultation to local small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Small business owners and entrepreneurs seeking assistance will have access to all of the center's services, including free one-on-one business counseling, free entrepreneurial training workshops, low-cost entrepreneurial training seminars, the Business Resource Center and custom corporate training.

The center offers business consultation in many areas, including starting a business, Internet marketing, business taxes and government contracting. It is an accredited organization that is funded partially through the Small Business Administration.

The center's Hernando office is at the chamber office, 15588 Aviation Loop Drive, south of Brooksville. To schedule a counseling session, visit

Who's news

Gino Ortiz of Brooksville has been promoted to regional vice president by Primerica, the largest independent financial services marketing company in North America.

Ortiz's office is at 13169 Jacqueline Road, Spring Hill. He can be reached at (352) 556-4865. For information, visit

• • •

Sandy Barley has been promoted to operations manager with Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind.

Barley will oversee operations at Lighthouse facilities in Pasco, Hernando and Citrus counties. He will continue to provide outreach services in those counties by speaking to civic groups and service organizations about Lighthouse and the services it provides.

Barley can be reached at (727) 815-0303. For information, visit

• • •

Rick Sexton and Louis Hallal, both UPS drivers, were recently inducted into UPS's Circle of Honor, the highest safety honor a UPS driver can achieve. Each driver must amass at least 25 years without an avoidable accident to qualify for induction.

Sexton is a package car driver out of the Brooksville facility and provides service in the Brooksville and airport areas. He and his wife, Christina, live in Brooksville and have one daughter.

Hallal is a package driver out of the Brooksville facility and provides service in the Homosassa area. He and his wife, Lisa, live in Brooksville and have one daughter.

UPS drivers log more than 2 billion miles a year on U.S. roads and average less than one accident per million miles.


R Beach Restaurant, 4054 Shoal Line Blvd., Hernando Beach, will have a fundraiser for the Spring Hill waterfall from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

The event will feature a buffet for $10 per person, with $5 per plate being donated to the Spring Hill Garden Club for its "Save Our Spring Hill Waterfall" campaign. The buffet will include: salad, rolls, pork tenderloin over homemade stuffing, Swedish meatballs over noodles in homemade gravy, fresh fried fish with homemade potato chips, and an assorted dessert tray.

A silent auction and a 50/50 raffle will be held. Reservations are required. Call (352) 592-5556.

• • •

The Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce will have the following ribbon-cuttings during the coming week:

IHOP restaurant, 3660 Commercial Way, Spring Hill, noon Wednesday. Call John Constantinou at (352) 683-5525.

Accent Aluminum Construction, 17410 Nicasio Jay Ave., north of Weeki Wachee, noon Thursday. Call William Chaney at (352) 597-7212.

• • •

Hernando Biz … Net-Connecting for You, a networking group, will meet at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday at Silverthorn Country Club, 4550 Golf Club Lane, Spring Hill.

A minimal dues structure is in place. Members are asked to attend at least three meetings a month and order breakfast from the menu. New members are welcome. Contact Sallie at (352) 428-3647 or

• • •

Hernando County Medical Alliance & Friends will have an open house at noon Thursday at Silverthorn Country Club, 4550 Golf Club Lane, Spring Hill.

Updates on health, community and family events will be offered. Those attending can share interests, ideas and promote business. RSVP by Tuesday to Maureen Soliman at (352) 650-9006 or

• • •

Green World Path, 1665 Donto Way, Brooksville, will offer a free educational program on aquaponics at 6 p.m. Thursday.

The speakers will be Gina Cavaliero and Tanya Peck from Green Acre Aquaponics, an aquaponic farm east of Brooksville. Aquaponics uses less than 2 percent of the water that is used in conventional agriculture and never uses chemical pesticides or fertilizers.

Staffers will offer tours of the Green World facility and garden. For directions, call (352) 799-0200.

• • •

The Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce will offer a Microsoft Excel workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday in the chamber's training room, 15588 Aviation Loop Drive in the Airport Industrial Park, south of Brooksville.

The workshop will be presented by Steve Burnley, general manager and director of Learning, Knowledge Quest Education. The purpose is to review the fundamentals of Microsoft Excel. The class will be conducted in a workshop format, with heavy emphasis on hands-on practice.

The cost is $10 per person. To register, call (352) 796-0697.

• • •

Nature Coast Business Professionals, a nonexclusive networking group, will meet at 8 a.m. Friday at Silverthorn Country Club, 4550 Golf Club Lane, Spring Hill.

The goal is to develop long-term relationships with other business professionals. There are no membership fees. Call Deborah Cutlip at (352) 293-4317 or visit

• • •

Volunteers from People for Haiti will speak from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 5 at GNC, 1421 Commercial Way, Spring Hill. People for Haiti is a local, nonprofit charity.

Visitors can learn how the charity is changing the lives of thousands through its medical missions, where local doctors provide medical care to children in orphanages and villages in Haiti.

GNC will donate 50 percent of sales on Saturday to People for Haiti. For information, visit

• • •

Miss Kitty's Hilltop Lounge will sponsor a benefit for the families of slain St. Petersburg police Sgt. Thomas Baitinger, Officer Jeffrey Yaslowitz and Officer David Crawford on March 6.

Individuals, groups and businesses are being sought to support the event with donations of gift certificates, merchandise or cash. Donations may be dropped off at the lounge.

Those interested in helping should contact Jerry or Darlene Terry at (352) 796-3475.

• • •

The Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce will offer its March Small Business Development Center business seminar, "Government Contracting 101," from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. March 8 in the chamber office, 15588 Aviation Loop Drive, south of Brooksville.

The seminar will be presented by Charlene Bostic, a certified business analyst. The workshop will provide information about registering with the federal government, how to locate federal opportunities, and whom to market to within the federal government.

The cost is $10 per person. To register, call (352) 796-0697.

• • •

The Hernando County Office of Business Development has announced that it will allow people to participate in its interactive series, "Changing Channels: Making the Switch to New Media Marketing," even if they missed the first workshop.

The three remaining workshops will be from 7:45 a.m. to noon March 9 and April 20 and from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. May 25 at Silverthorn Country Club, 4550 Golf Club Lane, south of Brooksville. The workshops provide a chance for local business owners and marketing specialists to learn about new media advertising, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.

The series is presented by the Office of Business Development, the Rotary Club of Spring Hill Central and Saint Leo University, with additional sponsorships by the St. Petersburg Times, the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce and Hernando Today.

The fee for the three remaining sessions is $149 per person, or one session for $50 per person. Advance registration is required. Register at or call the Office of Business Development at (352) 540-6400.

If you have business announcements you would like to share with our readers, mail the details to Jean Hayes, Business Digest, Hernando Times, 15365 Cortez Blvd., Brooksville, FL 34613-6174. You may also e-mail items to or fax them to (352) 754-6133. Items may be edited for length and clarity. Photos are published as space permits; they will not be returned.

Hernando business digest for Feb. 26 02/25/11 [Last modified: Friday, February 25, 2011 6:18pm]
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