Hometown Hernando for Sept. 14

Courtesy of Traci Athanason Principal\u2019s ride gets accessorized: Students at Spring Hill Elementary School can expect to see principal Michael Maine visiting classrooms every day on his new scooter, which he thought the kids would love. In fact, the teachers did too. So much so, they got together to help him accessorize his new ride. Under the suggestion of fourth-grade teacher Lisa Evans, the teachers pitched in to provide principal Maine with a cape, helmet, elbow pads and other fun items. The new tricked out ride will help principal Maine reinforce the school\u2019s theme this year, which is Relentless and Unstoppable Every Student, Every Day!
Courtesy of Amanda Martinez Students graduate summer youth program: Tammy T. Willis wears many hats minister, counselor, mentor, mother and CEO of Born to Win, a nonprofit community development summer youth program for students whose parents might not be able to afford sending them to summer camp. The program, which focuses on respect, offered real life tools, including employment education, communication skills, peer-to-peer mentoring, tutoring and so much more. Willis, at left, recently held a graduation ceremony for the more than 25 students (ages 12-18) who completed the program. With the help of the community, hard work and fundraising events, Willis raised enough to provide each graduate with a paycheck of sorts, rewarding them for a job well done.
Courtesy of Brooksville City Council City council presents merit award: Brooksville City Council members recently presented Ryan Malloy, Brooksville Main Street program\u2019s executive director, with a merit award recognizing the program\u2019s success. In 2013, Brooksville Main Street set out to create a consistent image for the city that would help guide visitors to and from destinations in the Main Street district and reinforce Brooksville\u2019s public image. The project began with a design manual that led to the installation of directional and identification signs in the downtown area, as well as gateway signs at major entry roads. A total of 34 signs were installed. From left are: council member William Kemerer; Bill Geiger, community development director; council member Joe Bernardini; Malloy; mayor Betty Erhard, council member Brent Young; and vice mayor Robert Battista.
Courtesy of Susanna Martinez Tarokh Swiftmud employees donate sneakers: The Southwest Florida Water Management District employee committee recently launched the Starting Off on the Right Foot Sneaker Challenge, a three-week donation campaign that encouraged employees to donate a pair of new sneakers to students in local schools, where more than 74 percent come from low-income families. The donation program, run by the District\u2019s employees, collected more than 300 pairs of shoes. Each pair counted toward an internal competition between teams throughout the District. Half of the shoes were donated to Moton Elementary School in Brooksville and half went to Gocio Elementary School in Sarasota. On Aug. 3, Moton students were ecstatic to be able to select a new pair of shoes.
Courtesy of Dominique Holmes Stuff the Bus fills classrooms: During the weekend of July 13 and 14, United Way staff, school teachers, volunteers and the community came together to donate thousands of pounds of school supplies to United Way\u2019s 12th annual Stuff the Bus drive. More than 800 volunteer hours were logged. The volunteers collected school supply donations at local Publix and Walmart locations. A recent study shows that teachers spend an estimated amount of $500 every year out of their own pockets for classroom essentials, project supplies and student items, said Angela Bonfardino, United Way of Hernando County\u2019s executive director. The initiative brought in more than 7,410 pounds of school supplies which helped stock more than 164 classrooms in 24 schools. For the third year, UW\u2019s partners in education Oak Hill Hospital, sponsored the Stuff the Bus T-shirts. Chocachatti Elementary School allowed UW to use classroom space to sort and organize teacher wish lists .
Courtesy of Denise Moloney Bowling event benefits Sheriff\u2019s Youth Education Services: Hernando County Sheriff\u2019s Charities hosted the 18th annual Youth Education Services Bowling Extravaganza at Spring Hill Lanes, July 28. Approximately 35 teams participated in the event, which raised more than $4,000 to benefit YES, a nonprofit group formed to develop programs for youth. Shown is Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis, left, with members of the Fyzical Therapy and Balance Center in Spring Hill team.
Courtesy of Vince Vanni Hospital\u2019s Volunteer Association presents 24 scholarships: Oak Hill Hospital\u2019s Volunteer Association recently presented 24 scholarships, each for $1,000, to graduating seniors. Scholarship recipients included: Central High graduates Gabrielle Albanese, Ely Bor, Hope Jaco, Nina Nickelson, Dina Tamburrino and Natalie Urban; Springstead High graduates Faith Appleton, Janya Capel, Christopher Cesiro, Anthony Gifford, Chelsey Jones, Alyssa Kemper, Brett Labella, Kyle Manuel, Breanna Moon, Aneesh Paulson, Jordyn Ranfore and Merriel Reyes; Hernando High graduate Madison Bleich; Nature Coast Technical High graduate Andrea Gemati; Weeki Wachee High graduates Hailey Barker and Juliance Bence; and West Hernando Christian School graduates Stephanie Margetto and Jessica Taylor. Shown are members of the Volunteer Association.
Courtesy of Vince Vanni Hospital volunteer receives scholarship: After receiving a $1,000 scholarship from Oak Hill Hospital\u2019s Volunteer Association, Madison Bleich, a teen volunteer at the hospital since 2016, was presented with an additional $2,000 scholarship from the association. Bleich, a graduate of Hernando High School, accumulated 141 hours of volunteer service at the hospital. She plans to pursue an associate\u2019s degree at Pasco-Hernando State College, and eventually earn a master\u2019s degree in nursing. Her goal is to work in labor and delivery, just like her mom, Julie Bleich, a charge nurse at Oak Hill Hospital.
Published September 10, 2018
Updated September 12, 2018

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Hometown Hernando is devoted to everyday life in our county, whether it’s snapshots from your family reunion, recreational sporting event, news from your last club meeting or just a few lines thanking someone for a job well done. You can contact Hometown Hernando news coordinator Jean Hamilton at: PHONE (352) 848-1438, FAX (352) 754-6133, EMAIL








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