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Singing Auld Lang Syne and enjoying Tangerine Time 2004, what a delightful way to usher in 2004 on New Year's Eve. The Jerome Brown Community Center was a hub of activity that evening, and I know it will be for years to come.

I did not attend the first Tangerine Time because of rain, but I am so glad I did this year.

When I walked in the door, I knew I was "home." Mayor Mary Staib greeted me. She was handing out free tickets for food, games, prizes and T-shirts. How about that for saying the price was right?

But what really impressed me was the sight of more than 400 parents and children spending New Year's Eve playing games, singing and actually having a good time. Imagine that!

Times Square may have its crystal ball, but the sight of the tangerine ball dropping at midnight could not have been any better or any more meaningful to us, so far away from New York.

It was a well-planned event, and I hope it will continue for years to come.

Thank you, Karen Phillips, Wayne Vutech and Archer Painting, the Brooksville City Council, volunteers from the Rotary Clubs, and city of Brooksville employees too numerous to mention individually. And thank you to that outstanding DJ, Bob Martinez.

You all put your talents together and saw that Hernando County had an awesome way to welcome in 2004.

On a more personal note, may I add that Jerome Brown would have been so proud to see the center being used for such a purpose: moms and dads, grandparents, and boys and girls all building memories together.

Keep up the good work, and thank you again for Tangerine Time.

Julia Jinkens


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The Hernando Athletic Association Screaming Eagles youth football would like to express its appreciation and sincere thanks to all of the local and area businesses and individuals whose sponsorships and contributions made the 2003 season so successful.

Those who invested in the youth of Hernando County by supporting the HAA by becoming a team sponsor include: AJ's Family Sports Bar, Central Power & Lime, CES Industries of Dade City, Coldwell Banker Schraut & Associates, Floor World of West Florida, Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 164, Hungry Howie's Pizza & Subs in Spring Hill, Penny Parts Automotive, Southern Wireless Internet Technologies or, Spare Time Sports Bar & Eatery and Tree Care By Robert Miller Inc.

Those who supported the HAA by becoming a league and spirit sponsor include: ALEMAP, Barker's Paint & Decorating, Bealls, Beef O'Brady's on Forest Oaks Boulevard, Cason Funeral & Cremation Service, Century 21 Alliance Realty, Coca-Cola Bottling Co., D&D Sheet Metal of Dade City, Dirt Devils Speedway in Land O'Lakes, ERA Pearson Realty, Fishing Rods Bait & Tackle, Florida Tropics Realty, Integrity Auto Care of Fort Pierce, J.F. Construction Enterprises, Kash n' Karry on Mariner Boulevard, Mike's Auto Body & Repair, Parking Lots/Steve Hulgin, Pasarela Drywall, Pro Com Network, Publix, S&S Drywall & Texture of Tampa, Sherwood Forest Nursery, Sherwood Florist, Springstead High School, Sunshine Concessions/Diane Benoist, Swedberg Enterprises/DBA Florida Drywall of Tampa, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, TRI-County Locksmith of Pasco, Wal-Mart stores in Brooksville and Spring Hill, Dr. Walter J. Szydlowski Jr. and Winn-Dixie in Hudson.

Kathy Mahla, treasurer

Debra Gordon, vice president

Hernando Athletic Association


West Hernando Athletic Club Seniors is a softball league for individuals over 55 years old. The 60-game schedule runs through April. The playoffs are in May. Larry Wagner umpires all games.

The 2003-04 WHACS teams include: Ron Fee, Suncoast Orthopedics & Sports Medicine Center/Dr. Fady Zeidan, American Legion Post 186, Elks Lodge 2582, Casablanca Pub and Yellow Submarine Cafe and Moose Lodge 521. This year's commissioner is Joe Yantus.

On Jan. 5, the American Legion defeated Ron Fee by a score of 22-8. In the second game, Moose Lodge 521 beat Suncoast Orthopedics, 18-12.

On Jan. 7, Casablanca/Yellow Submarine won the first game over Suncoast Orthopedics, 16-15. In the second game, the Elks beat Ron Fee, 16-12.

On Jan. 9, the Moose Lodge won the first game over the Elks by a score of 25-13. In the second game, Casablanca/Yellow Submarine beat the American Legion, 13-10.

To date, the standings are: Suncoast Orthopedics & Sports Medicine Center, 18-10; Casablanca Pub and Yellow Submarine Cafe, 18-13; Moose Lodge 521, 17-13; Ron Fee, 13-15; Elks Lodge 2582, 11-18; American Legion Post 186, 10-20.

In addition to weekly games, league members have weekly and monthly social events and activities. Games are at 9 and 10:30 a.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at Veterans Memorial Park in Spring Hill. For information, contact Lloyd Rogers, league secretary, at 596-7412.

_ Hometown Hernando welcomes reports on recreational and sports activities, both youth and adult, that do not normally run on the Sports pages. Send your news and results to: Jean Hayes, Hernando Times, 15365 Cortez Blvd., Brooksville, FL 34613-6174.