For his work with programs that match lonely seniors at Tampa Bay area assisted living facilities with high school youth, Palm Harbor University High sophomore Ishan Mandani was recognized Jan. 28 at the 2012 Tim Horton's NHL All-Star Game in Ottawa.
Ishan is one of three national winners of a contest called "All-Star World Changers," commissioned by Free The Children and the National Hockey League. It encourages youth age 17 and younger to talk about how they created positive change in their local or global communities and the resulting impact. The top three submissions received a fully paid trip to the 2012 NHL All-Star Game.
Ishan, 15, initiated local programs called "Volunteer Grandkids" and "Close2Heart," in which youths volunteer with the elderly (Close2Heart pairs students with hospice patients) for several weeks in different activities to share stories and gain valuable perspective, culminating in a memory book. By participating in the program, the students fulfill volunteer hour requirements to qualify for Bright Futures scholarships.
Ishan is also the cofounder of Our AIM Foundation.
"The passion and impact these youth have shown is a testament to the power of young people to make a difference in our world," said Craig Kielburger, cofounder of Free The Children.
Ishan is the son of Raj and Nisha Mandani of Dunedin.
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Lewis and Marie Ditrinco of Clearwater celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary Feb. 11 at a dinner party with family and friends at the Island Way Grill, Clearwater. The following day they renewed their vows at a special Valentine event at Clearwater's Horizon Bay, where they are residents.
The couple married Feb. 14, 1942 at St. Lucy Catholic Church, Rochester, N.Y.
He was a restaurant owner, starting with a small bar in 1946. In 1960 he purchased Bardo's Restaurant and Nightclub in West Webster, N.Y., which he remodeled three years later and renamed the Heritage House. He sold his last restaurant in 1988 at age 70.
Marie often worked with her husband as restaurant hostess.
The couple came here in 2003 from Boca Raton.
Lewis, 97, and Marie, 93, have always enjoyed card games, including gin rummy, which they play together most nights. The loser serves the chocolate ice cream, their favorite snack before retiring.
The Ditrincos have four children, nine grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren.
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St. Cecelia School students Alivia Quattrocki and Analise Walker of Clearwater and Brandon Boudeau of Safety Harbor were winners in their first competition in the Hoop Shoot Competition for Pinellas County, sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, Council 15264.
The three will advance to the regional championship, which will take place Feb. 25 at St. Cecelia School in Clearwater.
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At his Eagle Scout Court of Honor ceremony at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Dunedin, Kevin James Cormier was presented with an SAR Eagle Scout Certificate of Recognition for outstanding achievement and exceptional leadership and citizenship from the Florida Society, Sons of the American Revolution, Clearwater Chapter.
Kevin's Eagle Scout project took place at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, where he and a group of volunteers worked to beautify the church's outdoor stations of the cross path and meditation area.
The 18-year-old is a senior and honor roll student at Dunedin High. He is a member of Troop 26 in Palm Harbor and belongs to the Timuquan Lodge of the Order of the Arrow.
Kevin is the son of Bob and Kathy Cormier of Palm Harbor.
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The Suncoast Squadron of the U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps hosted its annual dinner and awards ceremony Jan. 29 at East Bay Golf Club, Largo.
The Clearwater Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution presented the League Cadet Good Citizenship Award to LCPO1 William Glen for exhibiting qualities of dependability, leadership, patriotism and good character. The Sea Cadet Award went to CPO Daniel Ekberg in recognition of the cadet's leadership, military bearing, excellence of character, scholarship and citizenship.