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Community Manatee Spotlight November 18, 2012


Southeast High School Music Program Gets Grant From Best Buy

Best Buy Mobile, the mobile specialty retail unit of Best Buy, joined with the GRAMMY Foundation® to donate $2,000 to Southeast High School in support of the school's music program. The event was in support of Best Buy Mobile's store opening at nearby 901 Cortez Road West Bradenton, FL 34207

Best Buy Mobile has over 375 mobile phone specialty stores across the country – it is also located inside every Best Buy big box location nationwide.  To help celebrate each opening, Best Buy Mobile will partner with the GRAMMY Foundation to make a $2,000 donation to a local school’s music program.

This program expands on the GRAMMY Foundation's support of music education by leveraging Best Buy's philanthropic platform and Best Buy Mobile resources.

De Soto National Memorial 4th Annual Winter Luminary Walk

De Soto National Memorial will light its trails with thousands of luminaries on Saturday, December 15th from 6:30-8:30 pm. The evening will be full of music and history. Free offsite parking and free shuttle service will be offered to and from the event from King Middle School. Join us in what has become a seasonal tradition for many.

Live Music — Returning, Native American musician Juan R. Leon will share the beautiful melodies of Native American flute on the shores of the Manatee River, and solo violinist Amberly Waterman of Anna Maria will play traditional European melodies.

Manatee High School Chamber Orchestra will play a wide array of seasonal favorites. State Road 64, Bluegrass and G man, Steel Drums will delight and entertain visitors throughout the night. 

Luminary Walk— This year the entire trail at De Soto National Memorial will be lit up with thousands of holiday luminaries. Encounter Historical re-enactors as they tell stories of how the Spanish and Native American cultures celebrated the winter season.

Free Parking and Free Shuttle Service— Convenient free parking will be located at King Middle School on 75th St. W. Free shuttle service to and from King will be provided with complements from our partner the, Anna Maria Island Community Center. Scott Dell, Director of the Anna Maria Island Community states “The Anna Maria Island Community Center is extremely excited to partner with De Soto National Memorial’s winter luminary walk. The Center’s mission is to make a positive difference in our community and in the world. This is such a great community event and we are honored to have been asked to participate and bring joy to many”.

Food and Refreshments Available— Food will be provided by Jose’s Real Cuban Food, with a unique local menu.

All events and activities at De Soto National Memorial are free. All activities are subject to change due to weather.

DeSoto National Memorial is located at 8300 De Soto Memorial Hwy, Bradenton 34209. On I-75 take exit 220 SR-64 Manatee Ave. Go west to 75th street. Travel north, the park is located at the terminus of 75th street. De Soto National Memorial is open seven days a week. The Visitor Center is open from 9 a.m. till 5 p.m. park grounds are open from sunrise to sunset. 


For more information visit our website http://www.nps.gov/deso or like us on Facebook keyword: De Soto National Memorial

Dogs Seized in Animal CrueltyNeed Homes


Manatee County Animal Services seized several Pit Bull mix dogs from a home in Bradenton on September 19, 2012 after the owners were charged with animal cruelty. Animal Services petitioned the court for a hearing to gain custody of the dogs. A hearing was conducted and the dogs were remanded to the custody of Manatee County Animal Services.


We are asking for the public’s help in placing these dogs into loving homes. The dogs did not ask for the poor treatment they received and they deserve a second chance to live and love.

For more information, contact Manatee County Animal Services at 941-742-5933.

Manatee Chamber Of Commerce Announces 2013 Executive Committee And Board Of Directors

The Manatee Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce its 2013 Executive Committee and Board of Directors.


Executive Committee

  • Chairman of the Board - Thomas Seguin, Suncoast Gems
  • Chairman-Elect - Rae Dowling, Florida Power & Light
  • Immediate Past Chairman - John Horne, Anna Maria Oyster Bar
  • Vice Chairman, Community Development & Communication - Jonathan Fleece, Blalock Waters, P.A.
  • Vice Chairman, Membership Development & Services - Todd Pokrywa, Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Inc.
  • Vice Chairman, Public Policy & Small Business - Trudy Moon, Air & Energy
  • Chairman, Economic Development Corporation - John Rice, Rice’s Appliance & TV and Outdoor Power Equipment
  • Treasurer - Kevin DiLallo, Manatee Memorial Hospital
  • President - Robert Bartz, Manatee Chamber of Commerce

Board of Directors

  • Lisa Arrigo-Hoban, L.A. Events
  • Ben Bakker, Trailmate / HJB Properties
  • Terri Behling, Southwest Florida Water Management District
  • Rick Bisio, Educated Franchisee
  • Shirley Bryant, City of Palmetto
  • Carlos Buqueras, Port Manatee
  • Rosemary Carlson, Saint Stephen's Episcopal School
  • John Chappie, Manatee County Government
  • Darcie Duncan, Duncan Real Estate
  • Chet Evans, Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM)
  • Bob Gause, School Board of Manatee County
  • David Gaylor, School Board of Manatee County
  • Ron Getman, Getman Cruise & Travel
  • Greg Green, Shinn & Company, LLC
  • Arthur Guilford, University of South Florida Sarasota - Manatee
  • Sharon Hillstrom, Manatee Economic Development Corporation
  • Ed Hunzeker, Manatee County Government
  • Susan Lambert-Kopstad, Sea Breeze International
  • Stephen Leedy, Tidewell Hospice
  • Chris Locke, IMG Academy
  • Michael Maddaloni, Bealls, Inc.
  • Mike Mears, State College of Florida
  • Sean Murphy, Beach Bistro
  • John Neal, Neal Communities
  • Donal O’Shea, New College of Florida
  • Jeff Orenstein, Living on the Suncoast Magazine
  • Kevin Osborne, SunTrust Bank
  • Fredrick Piccolo, Sarasota Bradenton International Airport
  • Wayne Poston, City of Bradenton
  • Bill Poulton, Tropicana Products
  • William Robinson, Blalock Walters, P.A.
  • JB' Taylor, Fawley Bryant Architects
  • Darrell Turner, Turner Tree & Landscape
  • Ernie Withers, Mercedes Benz of Sarasota
  • Kim Woods, The Bradenton Herald

Ryan Fulmer Passes CPA Exam

Kerkering, Barberio & Co. , Certified Public Accountants, is pleased to announce that Ryan Fulmer haspassed all four parts of the CPA exam to obtain the designation of CertifiedPublic Accountant.   Ryan graduated from theUniversity of South Florida receiving his Bachelor of Science degrees inAccounting and Marketing.   He beganworking with Kerkering Barberio in 2012, and his area of practice is audit andassurance services.

"We are very proud of Ryan for this great accomplishment.   He has worked hard to pass the CPA exam andobtain certification.   This incombination with his background and experience make him an integral member ofour audit and assurance services team," said Rob Lane, ManagingShareholder.

Annual Jingle & Jog  5K Road Race December 1st

Is that Santa’s sleigh you hear? NO! it’s the over 450 runners with Jingle Bells on their shoes as they run the 15th Annual Jingle & Jog  5K Road Race in of support Community Haven for Adults & Children with Disabilities! 

The Race will be held Saturday December 1st  at 8:00 AM. (Take University Parkway turn onto South Honore, take Honore to Desoto Rd., turn right, take Desoto Rd., to the end....turn right into Community Haven!)

Community Haven is an agency right here in Sarasota serving children, teens and adults with developmental disabilities.  They help children with disabilities in their preschool with therapy and Kindergarten readiness.  Teens with disabilities get a sense of belonging with the Transitions program as well as preparing them for the next step in their lives, secondary education or career development.  Our Adults at Community Haven learn the all important skills of independence with the safety net of Community Haven backing them with a place to learn, to socialize and earn a paycheck. 

Support Community Haven by registering now for the 15th Annual Jingle & Jog Road Race sanctioned by the Manasota Track Club. 

That’s the Jingle & Jog Road Race on Dec. 1st @ 8:00 AM to support Community Haven!  For more information contact Anny Barker Schefler @ 941-355-8808 ext. 258

United Way 2-1-1 Of Manasota, Inc. Celebrates I & R Day

Every day thousands of people find the help they need quickly, conveniently and free of charge because of Information and Referral (I & R) services. To recognize the importance of I & R in our community, United Way 2-1-1 of Manasota, Inc. is taking part in I & R Day on November 16th.

Information and Referral is the art, science and practice of bringing people and services together and is an integral component of the health and human services sector.

People in search of critical services such as financial assistance, food, shelter, child care, jobs, or mental health support often do not know where to begin to get help, or they get overwhelmed trying to find what they need. With I & R the information is available at their fingertips with one simple phone call just by dialing 2-1-1.

United Way 2-1-1 of Manasota, Inc. provides Information on Health and Human Services in three counties, Sarasota, Manatee and Desoto.

In late 2011, at the request of the Alliance of Information and Referral Services (AIRS), the U.S. Senate passed S.RES.241 designating November 16th as “National Information and Referral Services Day”. AIRS is an international non-profit professional association with a membership of more than 1,200 public and private I & R organizations including United Way 2-1-1 of Manasota, Inc.  Together, we have decided to continue celebrating I & R Day each November 16 to raise public awareness and recognize the critical importance of the I & R field.

Per Jessica Ventimiglia, Executive Director of United Way 2-1-1 of Manasota, “We are delighted to be a nationally certified provider of I & R services for the community.  Our staff feels rewarded each day by helping those less fortunate find the information and services they need to raise their quality of life.  We are a critical link between those in need and the resources and agencies that serve the local area.”

Manatee Players partners with Manatee Children’s Services for a merrier Christmas

The Manatee Players is once again partnering with Manatee Children’s Services, a Bradenton based community service that works to benefit our abused and neglected children, to collect toys and gifts for local children and teens.  Last year, MCS helped provide Christmas gifts for over 200 young people and this year the need is even greater. 

New unwrapped toys and gift items can be dropped off at the Manatee Players, 102 Old Main Street in downtown Bradenton or directly to the MCS office at 453 Cortez Road West in Orange Blossom Plaza.  Gift items for teens are especially needed and wrapping paper, tape and bows are also most welcome.

Manatee Children's Services (MCS) was founded in 1977 by a group of concerned Manatee County residents who identified an unmet community need, temporary housing for children who had been removed from unsafe homes. Since 1977, the organization has grown to 12 different programs and continues to provide the entire Suncoast Region with essential services to improve the quality of life for children in need.  More information on MCS is available at www.manateechildrensservices.com

Through these donations, we strive to make Christmas merrier for these deserving children and teens.


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