News Briefs for Pasco and Hernando counties for Nov. 16

News and notes from the community
Published November 12 2018

Hernando County


Gallery wants art for next exhibit

The Uptown Art Gallery is seeking artists to submit works for the "Holiday Spirit" exhibit at the gallery in Brooksville City Hall, 201 Howell Ave. Artists can submit 3 to 5 pieces of works that reflect the spirit of the holidays. All mediums are welcome, including 3-D art. New display cases are available to lock smaller items for security.

Works must be submitted between 9 a.m. and noon Dec. 1. All artwork should be gallery-ready to hang, with a wire securely attached to the back of the work. A card should be attached to the back or bottom with name, medium being used, and the price of the piece (if not for sale, indicate it as such). Student work is welcome.

Artists who have submitted pieces for the current "Giving Thanks" exhibit must pick up their work from 9 a.m. to noon Dec. 1. For information, contact Judith McIntire at (207) 809-9066 or (352) 540-3810.

Ridge Manor

Railroad track work to create detour

Improvements to the railroad crossing on State Road 50, east of U.S. 301, are scheduled to begin on Nov. 27. Construction will require road closures as motorists will not be able to cross the railroad tracks. Through-traffic will be detoured around the work zone, using U.S. 301 and Burwell Road.

The work is expected to be completed by Dec. 14. For information, contact the Florida Department of Transportation at (813) 975-6060.

Spring Hill

Hospital hosts Special Olympics celebration

The Special Olympics of Hernando County's Celebration of Athletes will be from 10 a.m. to noon Nov. 17 at the Oak Hill Hospital Graduate Medical Education Center, 11307 Cortez Blvd.

The celebration will honor the memory of Mark Swiconek, who was a long-time Special Olympics athlete, Oak Hill Hospital employee and an active member of St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church and Toastmasters International.

The event will include an athlete procession with the Knights of Columbus from St. Theresa Catholic Church; volunteer recognition honoring outstanding volunteers and coaches, athlete information and volunteer opportunities. Refreshments will be served.

Those attending will have an opportunity to learn about the program and how to get involved. For information, or to RSVP, call (478) 731-0680.

Tickets available for Dickens classic

Springstead High School's drama and choral departments will present the Charles Dickens classic, A Christmas Carol, at 7 p.m. Dec. 5-8, and at 2 p.m. Dec. 9, at Springstead Theater, 3300 Mariner Blvd.

Adult tickets are $15; student tickets are $10, and can be purchased online at For information, call Mark Pennington at (352) 476-9086.

Auditions set for 'Of Mice and Men'

Auditions for Of Mice and Men will be at 2 p.m. Dec. 1 and at 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at Stage West Community Playhouse, 8390 Forest Oaks Blvd.

The director is Ellen Hutt, who is seeking nine men and one woman. Actors will be asked to do a cold read. Sides will not be available before auditions.

Rehearsals will begin Jan. 14 for those playing Lennie and George, and on Jan. 21 for the rest of the cast. Show dates are March 14-24. For details, contact the director at [email protected]


Land O' Lakes

Gulfside Hospice to acquire CARES assets

Gulfside Hospice and Pasco Palliative Care and Community Aging and Retirement Services have announced that the companies have entered into an agreement for Gulfside's acquisition of certain assets of CARES Home Health Agency, which will allow Gulfside to provide licensed skilled home health agency services.

The closing of the transaction is subject not only to customary closing conditions, but also obtaining approval from the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration.

CARES is a nonprofit organization that provides services to seniors, caregivers and families in Pasco County. Gulfside Hospice is a nonprofit organization that provides hospice and non-hospice palliative services throughout Paco County.

All-Star football game pits east vs. west

The Fellowship of Christian Athletes in Pasco County will host the fourth annual All-Star Football Game at 7 p.m. Dec. 7 at Sunlake Field, 3023 Sunlake Blvd.

All Pasco County public high schools have drafted their best few senior players to represent the All-Star teams for this final game of the 2018 season. It will feature the Best of the East vs. the Best of the West. Rosters are available online at An All-Star cheerleader team has also been assembled and can be seen on the website.

The West team includes students from Sunlake, Mitchell, Anclote, River Ridge, Hudson, Fivay and Gulf high schools. The East team includes students from Land O' Lakes, Pasco, Zephyrhills, Wiregrass, Wesley Chapel, Zephyrhills Christian Academy, Bishop McLaughlin and Cypress Creek high schools.

Tickets to the game are $10 and can be pre-purchased at any high school, or at the gate on game day. Corporate sponsorships are available. For details, contact Bob Durham, area director, at (813) 784-4410 or [email protected]

New Port Richey

'Grinch' benefit set for Dec. 14

The West Pasco Business Association will host its eighth-annual "How the Grinch Saved Christmas" event at 6 p.m. Dec. 14 at Spartan Manor, 6121 Massachusetts Ave.

The event will feature live music by Shadofax, and there will be dancing, food, treats and a cash bar. There will also be a lotto tree, live auctions, raffles, 50/50 drawing, and a "wine and dine tree." Contests will be held for the ugliest holiday sweater, best holiday socks, and a Grinch/Whoville look-alike.

Tickets to the event are $35 for the first 100 tickets sold, available online at After the first 100 are sold, tickets will be $45.

Sponsorships are available. Donations of raffle baskets are also being sought. For details, contact Maria Johnson at (727) 934-0940 or [email protected]


Festival of lights set for Dec. 8

Main Street Zephyrhills will host the Festival of Lights from 4 to 9 p.m. Dec. 8 throughout the historic downtown area, around Fifth Avenue. A lighted, nighttime parade will begin at dusk.

The event will include free photos with Santa at Goin' Postal, live local entertainment at the Eiland Bandstand, and a large selection of food, merchandise and craft vendors. There will be a giveaway of two children's bicycles. Stop by the Main Street Zephyrhills booth to complete a survey and get a free ticket for an age-appropriate child (both child and adult must be present to win). The drawing will be at 8:30 p.m. at the bandstand.

Contact Phyllis Day at [email protected] or (352) 848-1408. Follow @pdaytimes.