Thursday, April 17, 2014

Disney's 'Frozen' is free 'Moonlight Movie' in Lakewood Ranch

Frozen Trailer on Disney Video

You may have heard of the film scheduled for the upcoming "Moonlight Movie" at Greenbrook Adventure Park in Lakewood Ranch.

Disney's smash hit "Frozen" will be played on the giant, two-story inflatable screen set up on the baseball field Saturday, April 26.

The free movie will start at sundown, and residents are invited to bring their chairs and blankets and claim their spots in front of the big screen. Families can also come early to enjoy the playground, tailgate or purchase barbecue sandwiches, snacks, popcorn and beverages.

The PG-rated "Frozen," which features Idina Menzel's hit song "Let It Go," runs for an hour and 48 minutes.

In case of inclement weather, the movie will be rescheduled for May 10. You can call Lakewood Ranch Community Activities the day of the movie at 941-757-1530 or check their website for up-to-the-minute updates.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

LWR Community Fund seeks humanitarian award nominees

LAKEWOOD RANCH — The Lakewood Ranch Community Fund is accepting nominations for the 10th Annual C. John A. Clarke Humanitarian of the Year Award, which will be presented at a reception on Friday, Oct. 17.

The Lakewood Ranch Community Fund established the award in recognition of the former president and CEO of Schroeder-Manatee Ranch’s “lifelong dedication to humanitarian ideals that have perpetuated the high ethical, moral, and professional standards that epitomize his life.”

Past recipients include Clarke, Don O’Leary, Pat Neal, Lorraine and Dick Vitale, Darrell Turner, Stuart J. Roth, Bob and Billie Delaney, Lou and Ann Marinaccio, and most recently, Col. John W. Saputo, USMCR.

Nomination forms are available and may be downloaded from the community fund website, Nominations should be mailed to the Lakewood Ranch Community Fund, c/o Manatee Community Foundation, 3103 Manatee Ave. W, Bradenton, FL 34205.  All nominations must be received by 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 11.

For more information, contact Marilyn Howard at

John Saputo, left, received the 9th Annual C. John A. Clarke Humanitarian of the Year Award in October 2013 at Lakewood Ranch. Making the presentation was Dick Wharton. JAMES A. JONES JR./Bradenton Herald

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Manatee River Soil and Water Conservation District holds Farm Tour in Manatee

The Manatee River Soil and Water Conservation District recently held its annual Farm Tour, designed to increase awareness of agricultural operations in Manatee County. 

Stops included the Manatee County Agricultural Museum in the Palmetto Historical Park; Hearne Produce in Parrish; Duette Fire Station, where lunch was provided courtesy of The Mosaic Company; a Mosaic reclamation area; and O'Brien Family Farms in East Manatee.

Here are some photos of the tour, provided by Soil Conservation Supervisor Gail Somodi:

A pygmy rattlesnake spotted by a tour participant at the Mosaic reclamation area.

Diane Ingram, Manatee County Agricultural Museum Supervisor, provides an overview to the group.

Cabbage comes in to the packinghouse from the field at Hearne Produce in Parrish.

The Hearne Produce packinghouse.

Kevin Taylor, Hearne Produce farm manager, provides an overview of cabbage production.

A tour through Hearne Produce's cabbage farm.

Lunch was provided by The Mosaic Company at Duette Fire Station.

A guided tour was given at O'Brien Family Farms in East Manatee.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

North River swears in new chief Michael Rampino, honors firefighter of the year Robert Tollise

Robert Tollise is the North River firefighter of the year.
provided photo
Michael S. Rampino has been sworn in as chief of the North River Fire District, replacing John W. McGinnis, who served more than 30 years in the district.

For more on the new chief, see the Herald's previous  story.

Also this month, Robert J. Tollise was honored as the district's 2013 firefighter of the year.

The firefighter of the year, as chosen by his peers, is one who exudes the qualities of professionalism, knowledge, skill, ability, dedication, and loyalty to the fire service and the North River Fire District.

Chief Michael Rampino and Fire Commissioner Michael Browning.
provided photo
Tollise, began his career in 1988 as a career firefighter with the City of Bradenton.  He left the fire service and joined the Tropicana-Bradenton Health and Safety Department in 1995 as their emergency response coordinator and hazmat team coordinator.

 In 2004 He became the Manatee County public safety hazardous materials chief.  He became a fire inspector with North River Fire District in 2010.  He  is a state certified firefighter, EMT, hazmat technician, fire inspector I and II, fire instructor III, arson investigator and he has earned a B.S. in Safety Engineering.

 His positive attitude and co-operative demeanor is evident to anyone who has the pleasure to work around him. He is recognized county wide as the “go to guy “ for hazmat advice."
Chief Michael Rampino, left, and Interim Fire Chief  Kenneth Cluley.
provided photo

Buchanan staffer to hold office hours in Ellenton

ELLENTON — A member of U.S. Rep Vern Buchanan’s staff will hold open office hours from noon to 2 p.m. Thursday in Ellenton.

Gary Tibbetts, field representative for Buchanan (R-Longboat Key), will be available to speak with constituents with questions, comments, or concerns regarding a federal matter, Buchanan’s staff announced.

The office hours will be held at Rocky Bluff Library, 6750 U.S. 301 N., Ellenton.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Lakewood Ranch resident, SCF student receives Coca-Cola scholarship

Evans Rimel, a Lakewood Ranch resident and student at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF), has been named a 2014 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Gold Scholar by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation.

Rimel will receive a $1,500 scholarship and a special medallion for being one of 50 students nationwide to be recognized as a Gold Scholar.

Another SCF student, Olga Klippert Blue, of Englewood and a native of Germany, was named a Bronze scholar and will receive a $1,000 scholarship.

“Our SCF students are extremely deserving of recognition for their hard work, leadership and stellar academic performance. Their success in winning these awards is a testament to their own commitment to excellence and to the quality education and support provided by SCF professors and advisers,” said SCF President Dr. Carol F. Probstfeld in a statement.

Only two students from each college can be nominated for the award, and recipients are selected by a panel of judges who consider academic rigor, grade-point average, academic and leadership awards, and engagement in college and community service projects.

In addition, Rimel, Klippert Blue, Palmetto resident Jourdan McKinnis and Corey Culbertson were named to the 2014 All-Florida Academic Team, which recognizes outstanding students for their academic achievement, leadership and service to their community. This year’s All-Florida Academic Team is composed of 109 students who were nominated by their respective colleges to the All-USA Academic Team competition sponsored by USA Today and Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) International Honor Society. Awardees will be recognized with special medallions at an awards ceremony Friday, April 25, in Orlando.

Evans Rimel
Here are Rimel's and McKinnis' bios, courtesy of SCF:

Rimel is the vice president of scholarship for the Nu Zeta chapter of the PTK International Honor Society at SCF Bradenton and president of the SCF Bradenton Student Government Association. As a member of SCF’s Model United Nations Club, Rimel was the first SCF student to earn a perfect score on his position paper at the 2013 Atlanta Southern Regional Model United Nations Conference and is a two-time winner of the Outstanding Delegate Award for his work on the Security Council. He also was the recipient of the 2013 Outstanding Student in Political Science Award, the flag bearer at the SCF Presidential Inauguration and the student speaker at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Academic Building. Rimel serves on SCF’s Student Activities Budget Review and Quality Enhancement Plan committees, and is active in the community as an Eagle Scout and member of the Manatee Young Professionals. After graduating with an Associate in Arts degree in May 2014, he plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in accounting at the University of Florida and later earn a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University.
Jourdan McKinnis

McKinnis is an SCF Collegiate School (SCFCS) student. She was the recording secretary for the Nu Zeta chapter of the PTK International Honor Society at SCF Bradenton and president of the SCF Circle K Club. She also served as the mathematics tutor at the academic resource center, participated in Relay for Life and volunteered as a tennis coach for elementary students at clinics at Terra Ceia Bay Country Club and Tidewater Preserve. After graduating with both an SCFCS high school diploma and an Associate in Arts degree from SCF in May 2014, she plans to attend the University of Central Florida and later earn a medical degree with the goal of becoming a surgeon.

Olaf from 'Frozen' will be at Lakewood Ranch health expo

If you or your kids can't get enough of Disney's "Frozen," listen up.

Olaf, the lovable snowman from the smash hit movie, will be a special guest at Lakewood Ranch's spring health & wellness expo this Saturday, March 29, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Lakewood Ranch Medical Center's main lobby.

The expo will include more than 50 exhibitors sharing samples, services and information. The hospital will be offering tours of its new pediatric unit, the breast health center and free glucose and blood pressure checks.

And for the kids, there will be a chance to win raffle prizes including two bikes from Disney, several Disney games on the lawn and photo ops with Olaf.