The Coral Gables Community Foundation celebrated the season with a lovely party on Dec. 10 at the beautiful Gables home of past CGCF chair Bill Bonn and Ruben Ceballos.
As guests enjoyed scrumptious hors d’oeuvres and drinks, CGCF chair Carlos Garcia announced that two generous benefactors, board member Matt Meehan, secretary of the Foundation’s board of directors, and Rod Hildebrant, had committed to a $20,000 matching gift to the Foundation for all donations pledged that night, a challenge that raised $50,000 that one night to support the Foundation’s many charitable programs.
That was music to the ears of CGCF’s new executive director, Mary Snow, who looks forward to working with her board and making a positive impact on the community. Among the many seen enjoying the holiday affair were Coral Gables Mayor Jim Cason; Bob and Marian Fewell; Venny Torre; Lynn Bauer; Dr. Hal Wanless; past CGCF chairs Hank Langston, George Corrigan and Mary Young; former CGCF executive director Andria Hanley, and Eddie Snow.
Toy drives have become a great way to spread the joy of the holidays for those in need and to remind us it is better to give than receive. Scott Sime, who serves on the board of the Miami Lighthouse for the Blind, and his wife, Belinda, took advantage of their holiday party to collect loads of toys for that organization. Similar drives were held around town by chambers, churches and even our own Miami’s Community Newspapers office.
Of course, Santa for Seniors also was a huge success thanks to South Miami Rotary president Gabriel DeArmas of Home Instead Care and all the many Rotary Clubs and businesses that collected for this ongoing program he started to bring smiles to seniors. We are very blessed to live in a community that is so generous not just in December but year around.
One of South Florida’s oldest business networking groups, Profit Inc., held a holiday party hosted by Robert Beans and Bay Plumbing at Wayne Eldred’s Tarpon Bend on Dec. 11. A very dapper looking Beans, immediate past president of the organization, sent everyone home with a gift bottle of wine and great memories. Among the many enjoying the affair were Daneza Socarras, Kemp Mobley, Jerry Lance, Kirk Whipple, Profit Inc president Stacy Alonso and husband Jose, Bill Garza, Marci Rodriguez, John O’Rourke, Dr. Joe Briggle, Mike and Susan Sutta, Carrie Loper, and Seth Coleman.
On the pageant front, young women who are interested in participating in a pageant to win scholarship dollars may want to check out the Kiwanis of Little Havana. They now are accepting applications for contestants to compete for the coveted title of 33rd annual Miss Carnaval Miami 2015. Those interested should call 304-644-8888 for information.
The final competition will take place Saturday, Feb. 7, at Manuel Artime Theater. The winner of the celebrated pageant will become an ambassador of Carnaval Miami 2015, receive $2,500 in college scholarship funds, a complimentary entry to the Miss Florida USA pageant and other prizes.
Finally, congratulations to all the Florida teams participating in the upcoming bowl games. The University of Miami is off to play the University of South Carolina in the 2014 Duck Commander Independence Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 27, in Shreveport, LA. The UM Alumni Association will be holding a pregame celebration to root the Hurricanes to a victory against that SEC team.
FSU fans may get two games if their streak holds against Oregon on Jan. 1; Florida will play East Carolina in the Birmingham Bowl on Jan. 3, and UCF plays North Carolina State in the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl on Dec. 26. First year for National Championship play off on Jan. 12 should make the beginning of 2015 a fun one.
Until next time, keep making each day count.
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