Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Community bike ride - pre-Village Celebration Picnic March 7, Coral Reef Park - 8:30 AM.

Let's get a few friends together and work up an appetite. Join me for what should be a great bike ride.  Palmetto Bay/Old Cutler is an outstanding place to bike, jog, walk and enjoy outdoor activities.

We are introducing a new feature of this year's Celebration Picnic. I am hosting "a Bike Ride with the Mayor" or perhaps my opportunity to "Bike Ride with Palmetto Bay families": Saturday morning, March 7 at Coral Reef Park -- site of the 13th Annual Celebration Picnic.

Register for the Mayor's Bike Ride at 8:30 a.m.

Thank you Palmetto Bay Parks & Recreation, Fanny Carmona Director, Eric Tullberg and the County's "Bike 305 Connecting Communities" program. Call for details: 305-259-1234.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Mangowood Estates Citizens Association - Annual Neighborhood Garage sale – Palmetto Bay Garden Club Annual Plant Sale - same day- Sat, Feb 21

Garage salers will have a nice cool Saturday for bargain hunting.  This weekend features one of the best target-rich environments: Mangowood's annual Garage Sale is scheduled for Saturday, February 21 from 8:00 AM until ???

No early birds please.

Well over 50 homes routinely participate in this highly anticipated event for bargain hunters. 

Mangowood Estates are located between S.W. 144 Street (Mitchel Drive) and 152 street (Coral Reef Drive) on the east side of US#1 between 80 Avenue and 84 Court. This is the biggest one, and it's not to be missed!

Review past Community Newspapers coverage of this event: Mangowood garage sales result in bargains for hunters, by Hal Feldman


Don't miss the Palmetto Bay Garden Club Annual Plant Sale - same day, Saturday, Feb 21.  This sale will be held nearby to the Mangowood Garage Sale at 15203 S.W. 84th Court beginning at 9:00 AM until 1 PM

Things to do this weekend: Art Show season continues - South Miami Rotary Art Festival - Feb 21, 22

Things to do this weekend (info taken from official website):

The Rotary Club of South Miami proudly presents its 32nd annual festival during the last weekend of February. The South Miami Rotary Art Festival takes place in the vibrant downtown area of South Miami on Sunset Drive (SW 72nd Street) from US 1 to Red Road (SW 57th Avenue) adjacent to The Shops at Sunset Place. The area is filled with historic buildings, restaurants and unique shops. Just three miles south of Miami's Coconut Grove, South Miami borders the University of Miami and the upscale neighborhoods of Coral Gables and Pinecrest.

There is free admission for patrons with ample nearby parking on-street and in garages. The festival features 150 outstanding artists, a fine expanded food court and beer garden and live jazz onstage.

For online or GPS directions search for 5750 SW 72 St., South Miami, FL 33143. You can reach them at or by telephone at 305-769-5977. Please be advised that volunteers periodically check messages and reply or return calls 

Check out the Community Newspapers coverage of this event (CLICK HERE): Its time for the South Miami Rotary Art Festival, by Jose Bowles: The festival was started in 1984 by John Sorgie, Karen Dorfman, Lydia White, and other members of the Red Sunset Merchant’s Association. It started as a small show with only 25 booths; it has grown into one of Miami-Dade’s most anticipated events.

And you should be there!  Weather will be cool.  Fun times.  We are in the midst of area Art Festival season.  Pinecrest, Beaux Arts, Coconut Grove, Wynwood and now South Miami.  Alexandra and I hope to see you there!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Photo of the day - Perrine Elem. has No place for Hate.

There is "No place for Hate" at the Dr. Henry E. Perrine Academy of the Arts.  It was my privilege to attend the Third Annual Banner Reception on Wednesday, February 18, where it's once again, a "Banner Day" for students, teachers and administrators. Congratulations and thank you for participating in this Anti-Defamation League program.

Kudos to those involved and in attendance, the students, administrators including School Board Vice Chair Dr. Larry Feldman; Principal Maileen Ferrer, Sonia Cruz, Assistant Principle and Dr. A.J. Major Dean, School Counselor. 

No Place for Hate is an outstanding program and I want to personally thank Lilian Medina, Anti-Defamation League Director. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Helen Marie Witty Memorial Scholarship Gala this weekend Feb 20 at Fairchild Tropical Gardens

Please join Alexandra and me at the Helen Marie Witty Memorial Scholarship Gala this weekend February 20, 2015.

CLICK HERE to view the official website.  There is information on Helen Marie Witty and how her life was tragically cut short by Carla Wagner, an intoxicated and distracted driver. The money raised by this event is for a memorial scholarship in Helen Witty's name, awarded to theatre students who embody Helen's love of theatre and passion for life as well as their academic and community service achievements.

Now, in 2015, the Helen Marie Witty Memorial Scholarship will receive its funding by hosting a charity gala at Fairchild Tropical Gardens. The scholarship not only benefits Miami Palmetto students, but has grown to include theatre students all across the Miami area who lead by example and steer away from destructive decisions in all aspects of their lives. 25% of the money we raise will be appropriated for a permanent memorial to Helen in upcoming renovation of the Miami Palmetto Senior High School Auditorium.

The goal is to have 100-150 people in attendance and raise $20,000 to keep the scholarship running for the next four years. The event will take place on February 20, 2015 from 7-11 pm at the Garden House in Fairchild Tropical Gardens. This Gala will include a silent auction and entertainment with live cabaret-style student performances from the most talented students in the Miami-area, as well as honor past recipients of the Helen Marie Witty scholarship.

We hope you can attend and participate.  You can also donate to the Helen Marie Witty Memorial Scholarship:  CLICK HERE.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Movie Night - This Sat 2-14-15 - and note new location - Ludovici Park.

from the official Palmetto Bay website

Join us for "Love is in the Park," a movie-night showing of "The Proposal," a PG-13 film, Feb. 14 at 7 p.m., at Ludovici Park. Please bring your a picnic basket and big warm blankets out to enjoy this PG-13 rated romantic comedy on a two-story screen starring Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds. (Click images for a movie trailer and event details.) Weather-wise, it could be a bit nippy -- but what better reason to snuggle up under the stars!
Event Location: Ludovici Park, 17641 Old Cutler Rd
This movie was chosen through the Palmetto Bay survey. I look forward to the movie and time with our Palmetto Bay community. 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

It should be a great night - for those who pre-registered - Date Night at Thalatta Estate Park - CLOSED

from the official village website:

Date Night at Thalatta Estate Park - CLOSED

"Date Night at Thalatta," Friday, Feb. 13, from 6:30 to 9 p.m., is now full to capacity for adults 21 and older at Thalatta Estate Park. Event offers couples a romantic venue to connect through art. Park Events staff is partnering with Painting with a Twist, Inc., for this event which includes wine, appetizers, painting instructions, and all supplies -- for $45 per person. Thank you for your overwhelming interest.
Event Location: Thalatta Estate, 17301 Old Cutler Road
Alexandra and I are looking forward to seeing friends and meeting new people at this event.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Photos of the Day - a great day at the Peoples Dock (Deering Estate)

It was a great day at the Deering Estate's Peoples Dock.  A wonderful Sunday afternoon. 
Lil Timmy wanted to visit the pelican.  Permission DENIED.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Exciting new events for Valentine's Day weekend(2/13) - Palmetto Bay - has our first-ever 'date night' - details

The Village of Palmetto Bay is offering a sweet pairing of adult-only events over the Valentine's Day weekend at two of our most darling Village parks.

The Community Newspapers, Palmetto Bay edition provides details of these two events. 

Residents 21 and older are cordially invited to attend an evening of art, wine, and hors d'oeuvres at "Date Night at Thalatta" on Feb. 13; followed the next night by "Love is in the Air," a movie night showing of "The Proposal" on Feb. 14, at Ludovici Park.

The first-ever 'date night' event offers couples a romantic venue to connect through art. Park Events staff is partnering with Painting with a Twist, Inc., for this event which includes wine, appetizers, painting instructions, and all supplies -- for $45 per person. Please pre-register online

Please follow the links to official village of Palmetto Bay Parks page for details, including the Village Facebook and Thalatta Facebook pages.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Urban Dictionary: leftshark - Just for fun

Urban Dictionary: leftshark

Just who was that in the left shark suit at the Super Bowl Half-time show? The performance - or as described below, the 'maverick dance' has won fans and placed a new term in our American lexicon.

 I prefer proposed meaning #2:  leftshark (Urban Dictionary)
to inexplicably deviate from expected routine, despite significant practice and talent.
Pete Carroll leftsharked the Seahawks chance to win the Super Bowl when he called for a pass instead of giving the ball to Marshawn Lynch.

Also see: Bleacher report: 'Left Shark' Is the One and Only True Hero of the 2015 Super Bowl, by Dan Carson. The article discusses that ... we will always have, however, is Left Shark—a beacon of ungainly hope in an otherwise serious and cruel world.

The shark—a costumed backup dancer in Katy Perry's Super Bowl XLIX halftime show—won over a nation of viewers Sunday night with its maverick dance moves and complete disregard for rhythm.

Have fun and a great Thursday.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Carter's baby and children's clothing store - another new business coming to Palmetto Bay

Carter's baby and children's clothing store is preparing to open where Maurice's jewelers was between Party City and French Bistro.  I am advised that the plan is to open Carters Colonial Palms Plaza on March 5th.

CARTER’S  (Currently listed on the Carter's store locator directory)
Carters Colonial Palms Plaza
13615 South Dixie Highway
Palmetto Bay, FL 33176

No information as to career opportunities for this new store location.  CLICK HERE for the Career Opportunity section of the Carter's web site. 

The Village of Palmetto Bay welcomes Carter's baby and children's clothing store to the neighborhood.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Today is Groundhog's Day 2015. Time to rise and shine for Punxsutawney Phil

Superbowl Sunday is over and we now move on to the big money predictions - and the pressure this morning is on Punxsutawney Phil as he provides his wisdom on Groundhogs day 2015. 

Will we see a repeat of the controversy of 2013 when many accused poor lil Punxsutawney Phil of fraud or incompetence in his prediction?  He promised an early end to winter in 2013, but that is not what we had. 

HISTORY: 1886 is the first recorded or official Groundhog Day and was celebrated on February 2nd in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The following year, an official ceremony was held at Gobbler’s Knob and “Phil” was named and proclaimed the one and only official weather predicting groundhog.

This is quite an annual event. The population of
Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania is normally 6,700 residents. The record attendance for a single Groundhog Day event is reported to be 38,000.00.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Aldi - the new tenant where Office Depot once stood - Coming soon to Palmetto Bay

Some Palmetto Bay residents have asked as to the new tenant that is taking over the space next to Lots of Lox vacated by Office Depot.  Construction is ongoing.  (on the corner of Coral Reef Drive and South Dixie Highway). The sign (pictured at right) indicates that an Aldi is ‘coming soon.’ Here is what my research reveals: First, the ALDI Official HOME PAGE.

then, some articles, beginning with the New York Times, Business Day section: Where Wal-Mart Failed, Aldi Succeeds, by Stephanie Clifford, March 29, 2011. It appears that Aldi has quietly been setting up its shops in cities around the country. The article gives some insight on this company, indicating that Aldi first came to the United States in 1976, but it opened a relatively small number of stores a year — 25 or so on average. But has accelerated the expansion through adding more than 250 stores, with plans for 80 more both in 2011 and 2012.

Read this article for the information that appears to still be relevant (It is a 2011 article).

The article goes on to discuss that this chain:

“They’re not only doing the small format more rapidly, but they’re getting into the urban areas more rapidly than either Wal-Mart Express or the city Targets,” said Craig Johnson, president of the consulting firm Customer Growth Partners. “Even though the company’s headquartered in Germany, they’ve opened up a New York store quicker than Wal-Mart has.”

“There’s no reason to oppose an Aldi — it’s a small format, and they usually get space from an existing landowner or landlord, a small guy who’s plugged into the community, not a big guy like a Forest City Ratner,” Mr. Johnson said. “Wal-Mart has sort of become a bad guy that there’s a concerted effort against. I’m not sure that Aldi has really gotten on anyone’s radar screen.”

The company capitalizes on the bargain hunter, who is not embarrassed to choose frugality over name brands. Aldi’s mainly sells its own private-label items at cheap prices — a five-ounce bacon-wrapped beef filet costs $1.79 at the Queens store.

Also see Browbeat, December 2, 2013, Trader Joe Has a Brother. He’s Even Better, by Rebecca Schuman. This article discusses how this chain is a close relative of Trader Joe's, specifically discussing what we may soon see here in Palmetto Bay:

Chances are that you have never set foot inside the best grocery store in America: Aldi. And even if you are lucky enough to be in one of the 32 states where Aldi is, perhaps you were put-off by the cardboard boxes in lieu of shelves, or the row upon row of suspicious-looking off-brands. What is this place? Why do I have to put down a deposit to check out a cart? What is the weird giant shelf by the exit? And what do you mean, I have to pay for a bag?

Calm your hormones, meine Schatzis: Aldi, which is short for Albrecht Discount, is the American incarnation of a German grocery chain that is so ubiquitous in the Vaterland that almost 90 percent of Germans shop there. ….

Want to follow Aldi?  If so, you can CLICK HERE to view (and 'like' if you are so predisposed) the ALDI Facebook page.  It also appears that ALDI will provide 75 full time jobs here at their soon-to-open Palmetto Bay location.

So we will wait and see what our new store in Palmetto Bay has to offer.  Perhaps any readers can share their experiences with me - there is presently an ALDI store that is open in Cutler Bay. 

The Village of Palmetto Bay welcomes Aldi to the neighborhood.