Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Amy Scherzer's Diary

Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly wrap-up of the Tampa social scene

Starlight Gala

Newsies hawking the Chicago Tribune, fedora-topped gangsters, deep dish pizza and hot dogs served on Cubs napkins —all the Windy City passions flavored the Starlight Gala, "An Evening in Chicago" benefit for the Florida Hospital Foundation. But Sunday's big score came when Rock & Roll Hall of Famers Chicago blasted onto the Marriott Waterside stage, thrilling the nearly 900 guests with a private concert composed of 50 years of hit singles. Getting to rock a drum solo with them on "Feelin' Stronger Every Day" was a bucket list dream come true for Florida Hospital Tampa chief of staff, cardiologist Mitch O'Hara, the first guest to do so, they said.

In the red-lit ballroom dotted with red roses and iconic Chicago scenes, emcees Jamison Uhler and Lisette Campos of WFTS- Ch. 28 helped auction sporting event and shopping spree trips. All the sudden, Uhler recognized the voice vying for the Tuscany cooking experience belonged to his wife Amber. Her winning bid: $15,000; the expression on his face: priceless; gala results: $1.275 million for inpatient and emergency room pediatric care at five Tampa Bay area hospitals.

Lend A Hand Luncheon

Raised in squalor then abandoned by alcoholic parents, Skye now awaits admission to med school. Brooklyn spoke of foster care demons and deplorable living conditions before Starting Right, Now brought mentor Michelle Shimberg into her life. Jarian said without Vicki Sokolik's organization, he would never have pursued a hospitality degree at FIU and internship at Ulele. And they are just three of 200 teens getting help with housing, tutoring, jobs, scholarships and medical and dental care.

"These kids were amazing before the program, but without Starting Right, Now's intervention, they wouldn't have made it," said board chairman Matt Silverman, president of the Tampa Bay Rays.

"Failure is not an option," said emcee WFLA-Ch. 8 anchor Stacie Schaible as the 600 guests grabbed tissues and donation envelopes at the annual Lend A Hand luncheon Oct. 13 at Higgins Hall. Honorees included Hillsborough County commissioner Sandra Murman who received the Soul Award and Lotus Award recipients Richard Gonzmart and Elizabeth Fowler whose Triad Foundation added $75,000 to bring event proceeds to nearly $300,000.

Ryan Nece Foundation's Power Plate Luncheon

Former NFL player Ryan Nece formed his foundation 10 years ago to fund various Power of Giving community efforts. Gradually, the mission evolved into a two-year student leadership development program turning teens into capable and compassionate citizens, like Power Plate luncheon speakers Richard Gonzmart and Judge Catherine McEwen.

The foundation taps a broad range of social issues, "creating an invaluable ripple effect," said U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, noting several students traveled to Flint, Michigan to help residents dealing with the lead-contaminated water crisis. "Our staff and board members roll up their sleeves" to model public service and accountability, said Nece, proud new father of 6-week old son Elijah. The Oct. 14 luncheon at the Ferguson Law Center raised more than $13,000.

Events

Friday: Junior Achievement's Circle of Enterprising Women's inaugural "Night on the BizTown," 7 p.m.; Muma JA BizTown; $125 or $200 per couple; (813) 382-6487 or jatampabay.org.

Saturday: Eye Ball Gala-Vintage Hollywood benefits Lions Eye Institute, 6 p.m.; Westly Event Center, 6308 Paddock Glen; $250; lionseyeinstitute.org/eye-ball-gala-2016.

Saturday: MOSI 16th annual Hispanic Scientist of the Year gala: honoree Adriana Ocampo, NASA program manager, 7 p.m.; 4801 E Fowler Ave; $80 per person, $150 per couple; mosinhsoy.org

Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly wrap-up of the Tampa social scene 10/18/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 19, 2016 6:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bar review: Sample whiskey, vodka, rum, absinthe and more at Fish Hawk Spirits in Ybor

    Bars & Spirits

    While craft brewing has firmly entrenched itself in local drinking culture, craft distilling is still a very niche market. Part of this is due to outdated and arguably unfair distilling laws, and part of it is because successful distilling can often be a lot tougher and more time-consuming than brewing up a few batches …

    For $10, you can sample four of Fish Hawk Spirits’ fruit-infused vodkas, as well as its molasses-based rums, tangerine brandy and more. Old whiskey barrels lend a rustic vibe to the Ybor shop.
  2. Pinellas deputy in trouble for social media boast: 'Nothing like almost shooting someone'

    Public Safety

    LARGO — A Pinellas County Sheriff's deputy is under investigation after a photo that shows him boasting about almost shooting someone made the rounds on social media.

    A Pinellas County Sheriff's deputy is under investigation after a photo that shows him boasting about almost shooting someone made the rounds on social media. Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt. Spencer Gross on Thursday confirmed deputy Austen Callus' employment and said the agency is "aware of the social media post." [Facebook'
  3. ReliaQuest's benevolent hackers try to make companies more secure

    Corporate

    TAMPA — Their goal is to get in. Past a security desk, through a firewall, into a system they shouldn't have access to. Sometimes they'll look like a regular person in the lobby who innocently forgot their access badge. Most times they won't be seen at all, remotely and quietly prodding a company's systems from a …

    Angelo Castellano of Tampa works at his desk at ReliaQuest | | [CHARLIE KAIJO, Times]
  4. Watch the trailer for 'Mini Lights,' based on St. Petersburg's frightening urban legend

    Blogs

    Perhaps you've heard of the "mini lights." The tales can vary a bit, but generally, they're said to be nasty little creatures controlled by a witch that once lived near Booker Creek. They come out after dark to "get you."

    A scene from the proof of concept trailer for a mini lights movie.
  5. Democratic ad: Adam Putnam is 'silent' on GOP health bill

    Blogs

    Democrats are trying to attach Adam Putnam to the GOP’s unpopular plans to replace Obamacare.