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Amy Scherzer, Times Staff Writer

Amy Scherzer

Amy joined the Times in January 2002 to help launch the weekly City Times edition serving South Tampa and nearby neighborhoods. Her column, Amy Scherzer's Diary, takes readers along as she makes her rounds on the social circuit. Camera in hand, Amy captures the galagoers, wine tasters, Gasparilla kings, debutantes and bay area philanthropists.

Amy earned her bachelor's degree in mass communications and political science at the University of Pittsburgh, and has been a Tampa resident since 1978. She and her husband, Robert, live on Davis Islands, proud parents of two grown children. Any free time is spent people watching, entertaining, boating and reading.

Phone: (813) 226-3332

Fax: (813) 226-3381

Email: ascherzer@tampabay.com

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  1. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-Up of the Tampa Social Scene

    Human Interest

    Pride & Passion

    Always colorful, Pride & Passion burst the rainbow at Now in Technciolor, hosted by the LGBT community and friends for the Tampa Museum of Art. Hundreds of colorful celebrants hopped the galleries, admiring Jaume Plensa's Human Landscape exhibit — and one another — Saturday. Dan Medina, one of the 20 artists exhibiting technicolor-inspired work in the atrium, handed out markers for drawing on his white suit jacket. Jauntily clad in the full spectrum — pastel tuxedos to bold gowns — the 900 guests were rewarded for their creativity with a one-year membership from museum executive director Michael Tomor....

    Erin Aebel, left, entertainer Macavati, St. Petersburg Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin and Christina Majeed pose on the red carpet at Pride & Passion, Now in Technicolor, a benefit for the Tampa Museum of Art.
  2. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-up of the Tampa Social Scene

    Human Interest

    Karamu XXVIII

    Lowry Park Zoo baited and captured Karamu donors with gamboling giraffes and lumbering elephants, tiger paw art and a chance to bid on an exclusive clouded leopard meet and greet, all while dining and dancing at the black-tie benefit.

    "The zoo is an easy sell," said Jenny Jones, co-chair with husband Ken of the sold-out gala in the Safari Lodge and surrounding savannah. Their theme, Legacy, salutes the mission of caring for 1,300 diverse animals at the community asset led by CEO Joe Couceiro. Also saluted: former Tampa Mayor Dick Greco, recovered from serious health issues, with a standing ovation for his government legacy....

    Jane Toombs and Ross Ferlita support the Lowry Park Zoo at Karamu, the annual black-tie gala benefit, on Saturday.
  3. CEO for the Next Gen: Jen Stancil, leads Glazer Children's Museum

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Jennifer Stancil is that cool mom who flashes the newest apps and plays the latest games.

    As the new Glazer Children's Museum president and CEO, she's presenting her latest game to more than just the kids in her neighborhood.

    Stancil brings the Situated Multimedia Art Learning Lab (SMALLabs), developed at Arizona State University, to the museum this month and it will allow visitors of all ages to enjoy an embodied-learning exhibit loaded with hundreds of interactive game-based scenarios— from learning the ABCs to chemical titrations — with the help of 12 motion-capture cameras....

    Glazer Children’s Museum CEO Jennifer Stancil hopes to build on the number of visitors, about 215,000 last year. “We are trying to position ourselves to age up with our visitors,” she said.
  4. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-Up of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Magnolia Ball

    Moffitt Cancer Center CEO Alan List and "guiding star," retired legislator H. Lee Moffitt, celebrated 30 years of medical break-throughs, expansion to four campuses and 1,000 researchers at the Magnolia Ball headlined by the Goo Goo Dolls on Saturday. Fueled by filet mignon and lobster tail, gowned and tuxed supporters added $2.5 million to the search for a cure through auctions, raffles and appeals at the $1,000-ticket bash....

    Diana Durango and Christian Rivera hope to premiere their film, Blurred Lines, at next year’s Gasparilla International Film Festival.
  5. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-up of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Bolts Better Halves' Fashion for a Cause

    The Bolts Better Halves, a.k.a. Tampa Bay Lightning wives and significant others, must have used all their feminine wiles to assemble the unrivaled lineup of player experiences auctioned at the first Fashion for a Cause benefit for the Spring of Tampa Bay. Rarely has an event raised so much, so fast — $97,000 in about 20 minutes, thanks to a small audience of fans, suite and season ticket holders, some Spring board members and friends. ...

    AMY SCHERZER | Times photos  Chris Ragusa of Ye Loyal Krewe of Sam Bellamy does a split while selling raffle tickets at the Bootlegger Ball hosted by the Bootlegger Belles and Beaus on March 26 at the Centre Club.
  6. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly wrapup of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    DeBartolo Foundation's 13th All Star Charity Gala

    "You're family," sisters Lisa and Nikki DeBartolo greeted a wide-ranging roster of guests and celebs, from NFL legend Jim Brown to NBC's Cheers' George "Norm" Wendt at the 13th All Star Charity Gala, "one helluva party," said Joanne Petrella emceeing for the DeBartolo Family Foundation on Saturday. ...

    Sean Dowling, left, Darren Davis, Robert Pollack, Alissa Pollack, Lisa DeBartolo and Don Miggs celebrate at the All Star Charity Gala on April 2 at the Marriott Waterside hotel.
  7. Leeza Gibbons speaks at Girl Scouts of West Central Florida luncheon

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — When things aren't going her way, pop culture pro Leeza Gibbons recommends visualization.

    To remind herself who's in charge, the Emmy Award-winning former co-host of Entertainment Tonight pictures herself wearing a tiara.

    "I am queen of my life," Gibbons said. Feeling glum, head cast downward, "will only make the crown fall off.

    "So throw your shoulders back, look up and stand tall."...

    AMY SCHERZER | Times photos  Talk show host, author and founder of a foundation helping caregivers Leeza Gibbons, second from left, chats with the inaugural inductees to Girl Scouts of West Central Florida's Hall of Fame, from left,  Karen Seel, Alma Hires, Jan Platt and Betty Castor, at the Hilton Tampa Downtown on March 29.
  8. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly wrap-up of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Athletes+Causes

    Rob Canton beamed at Athletes + Causes, the third annual benefit he has hosted for Athletes and Causes. Huh? One is the name of the auction fundraiser, the other is the organization he founded to provide "major-league athletes and coaches strategic financial planning to leverage celebrity and brand philanthropy," explained Canton, senior adviser to ownership for the Vinik Family Office....

    Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary fashion show co-chairs Linda Mattos and Carolyn Proctor, from left, guest speaker Susan Raines, emcee Gayle Guyardo and associate area commander Leisa Hall salute the organization.
  9. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-up of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Dream Keepers Ball

    Like excited new parents, Champions for Children executive director Brian McEwen and development director Liz Kennedy hovered, pampered and coddled guests at the Dream Keepers Ball, a first-time benefit emceed by Mark Rivera of WTSP-Ch. 10 and board member Peter Lewis for the rebranded Child Abuse Council. While entertained by Aerial Dragons acrobats on silks, supporters learned about developmental play groups, home visits, parent education classes as well as Kids on the Block, Layla's House and other programs to help families overcome society's challenges. During dinner at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay, auctioneer Greg Benjamin pitched fancy dinners, trips and staycations, getting a $4,100 bid from board member James Armstrong for week at a Manasota beach house....

    Ron and Sherry Sacino, from left, and John McManus of Brown & Brown Insurance support the Dream Keepers Ball benefit for Champions for Children.
  10. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-up of the Tampa Social Scene

    Human Interest

    Jesuit High: Gaudiosa, An Evening in London

    School spirit swept the Gaudiosa gala, galvanizing Jesuit High parents, alums and other guests to help cover tuition costs for 25 percent of the all-male Catholic school. Example? Four guests raised their hands when asked to fund a full year at $14,000. That's when a lively math lesson took off, as donations added up to $660,000, averaging $1,000 per partygoer, all while having a jolly good time at An Evening in London on Feb. 27....

    Gaudiosa co-chairs for the third time and annual underwriters Harvey and Cherie Schonbrun, from left, celebrate with Jesuit High president Father Richard Hermes. Harvey graduated in the class of ’65, sons Alan ’03, and Austin ’10. In the past three years, the Gaudiosa gala raised more than $2 million.
  11. Get set to shop at Chiselers Market on Saturday to help UT preservationists

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Printers, platters, potholders and paintings.

    Orchids, ottomans and omelet pans. Tools and teapots, crystal and Christmas decor, books and boutique clothing. Name it and come claim it, top-quality, donated goods of every category will be sold at the Chiselers Market on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. throughout Plant Hall, the heart of the University of Tampa campus.

    Prices are set low to raise high expectations for the restoration projects undertaken by the Chiselers, a group of female preservationists organized to protect the city landmark, the 1891 Tampa Bay Hotel, including repairing windows, balconies and minarets....

    China pieces are among the many items that capture shoppers’ attention year after year at the market.
  12. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-Up of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Easter Seals' A Pair to Remember luncheon

    Manolo Blahniks, Guccis and Jimmy Choos, packaged with trips to Negril, Costa Rica, Orlando and other experiences, baited bidders at Easter Seals' seventh annual A Pair to Remember luncheon auction. Charming male shoe escorts wedged between tables plying the fancy footwear on silver platters.

    "Drink a lot and spend a lot and I'll get the stains out," joked the Oxiclean guy, Anthony Sullivan, emceeing with lingerie entrepreneur Rhonda Shear at the Straz Center on Feb. 26. One Costa Rica trip sounded so good that Sullivan bought it himself for $5,100 and sold it again to sponsor Bruce Fabel....

    YMCA Sierra Club volunteer of the year Armando Garcia, left, and Interbay Y member Theresa Collington support the work of the YMCA Tampa at the annual Impact Awards dinner Feb. 25 at TPepin’s Hospitality Centre.
  13. Hyde Park home tour offers architectural variety

    Human Interest

    HYDE PARK — Come in, look around, have a bite … eight home­owners welcome visitors Saturday to the 14th annual Historic Hyde Park Neighborhood Association Home Tour.

    "Hyde Park has it all, "said Lauren Andrews, tour chairwoman, describing the variety of architectural styles, "from 1920s bungalows to a contemporary Valencia condominium."

    "It's fun to see the combination of original styles and modern conveniences," Andrews said. "New kitchens, second stories, a spa and gazebo increase square footage within the character of the original homes." Vintage automobiles will evoke the era of three homes, in contrast to some of tour sponsor Ferman Motors' latest models....

    At just over 1,000 square feet, the North residence, a Craftsman-style bungalow, is decorated to maximize space, convenience and comfort. It will be open for viewing during the Historic Hyde Park Neighborhood Association Home Tour on Saturday.
  14. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly wrapup of the Tampa social scene

    Human Interest

    Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla coronation ball

    University of Florida football Hall of Famer, six-season NFL running back and real estate attorney W. Lawrence Smith scored a new title, 103rd Gasparilla King, at Ye Mystic Krewe's coronation ball. Queen India Powell Stallings, a speech pathology student, notched her family legacy 50 years after her late grandpa Norman Stallings Sr. was crowned the 53rd king in 1966 and 21 years after her father, Norman Stallings Jr., served as the men's club's 82nd king....

    Cattle Baron’s Ball sponsors Yvonne and Tamer Youssef stop at the mechanical calf-roping machine.
  15. Plant High singers celebrate 25th anniversary of Rick's Cafe

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Plant High student vocalists once again turn the auditorium into that famed Casablanca bar, Rick's Cafe, for an evening of Broadway musical entertainment, a 25-year tradition at the South Tampa school. Selections come from Annie, Cabaret, Fiddler on the Roof and more.

    Chorus students harmonize, choreograph and costume their own auditions, including large group numbers, said Laura Gauthier, whose daughter Mary Olive will perform during three performances on Thursday, Feb. 26 and Feb. 27. More than 180 students will perform in 15 musical acts, nearly every member of the 200-plus choral program....

    Alex Muscaro sings So Long Dearie from Hello, Dolly! in the 2015 version of Rick’s Cafe.