Woman’s Clubs convene; Rotarians raise funds for homeless veterans

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Several local women’s club gathered for GFWC (General Federation of Women’s Clubs) Florida’s Fall Board in Orlando the weekend of Sept. 9. The annual event includes entertaining and informational programs as well as a chance for clubs to share their many successes and challenges.

Lots of first timers from South Florida came, including Coral Gables Woman’s Club board members Valerie Valenzuela, Yvonne Elejalde, Alma Soto and Arely Ruiz. Among the others participating in the weekend were CGWC president Deborah Van Stone Moore; CGWC past presidents Barbara Lapsley, Mireya Kilmon and Linda Hartwell; treasurer Nancy DesMangle, and board member Ruth Martinez.

The new Carolina Ale House on Bird Road and SW 67th Avenue hosted a fundraiser for Coral Gables Rotary’s homeless veterans project raising more than $700. Project coordinator, Yolanda Woodbridge will be using the funds to purchase toiletry packages that are distributed daily to our homeless vets. Many thanks to Carolina Ale House for hosting the event.

Numerous other September charitable events included two on Sept. 15, both of which drew nice crowds.

One was at the beautiful lakeside home of Dr. Jose Guverich, DDS. His home provided a lovely setting for a “friendraiser” for A Safe Haven for Newborns, a party orchestrated by Jose’s daughter Gaby. The get-together leads up to the organization’s annual gala on Oct. 22 at Jungle Island.

The highlight of the evening was the unveiling of this year’s painting, generously created and donated every year by local renowned artist Roxy Sora. Roxy’s art is auctioned off at the annual gala and also used in marketing and promotional material for the event.

Nick Silverio, founder and CEO of A Safe Haven, addressed the crowd along with Efrain Sora, an annual donor, and Marti Bueso, the organization’s development director who is Nick’s only staff.

Nick, of course, works 24/7 and has never taken a salary — a truly amazing person. Among the crowd were supporters included gala auction chair Norris Perez and her husband, Joe Perez; vocalist Cachita Lopez; Gina Perez; Carmen Sardina; Sally Villalba; several members of the Coral Gables Woman’s Club including club president Debi Van Stone Moore, and Diane Superville.

That same evening, Bill and Julia Beckham hosted a party for the Junior Orange Bowl Committee at their home in Gables by the Sea. FPL’s Charles Knight, president of the JOBC; executive director Jessica Cerda, and assistant director Alex Markel were there to welcome guests, including longtime chairs Barbara Waters, J.R. and Jodie Steinbauer, and Hank Langston.

Halloween weekend offers lots of great activities for all. Saturday, Oct. 29, the Coral Gables Woman’s Club will hold its annual Halloween party, always one of the best parties around as the club transforms the clubhouse at 1001 E. Ponce de Leon Blvd., befitting the theme. It is one of the best deals in town for a fun night with food, dancing, contests and more. Visit www.gfwccoralgableswomansclub.org.

Earlier that same Saturday, Oct. 29, the Rotary Club of Coconut Grove and the Kiwanis Club of Coral Gables will join forces for their third annual barbecue and raffle, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at the Boy Scouts Troop 7 Log Cabin at 1107 S. Greenway Dr. in Coral Gables.

Look for some great raffle gifts this year including two tickets to the Championship Race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, a one year family membership to Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden, a two-night stay at the Sonesta Hotel in Coconut Grove, a $75 gift certificate to Jaguar Restaurant in Coconut Grove, a $100 gift certificate to Crook & Crook, and a $100 gift certificate to Tysunn Cleaners. Raffle tickets are $20 each. Cost for the barbecue is $15.

This fundraiser is the second part of the annual fishing tournament to benefit the clubs’ sponsored community and youth leadership programs. For more information, visit www.kiwanisandrotaryfishtournament.com or contact Richard Martin at rwmartin20@yahoo.com.

Until next time, keep making each day count.

If you want to submit information for this column, please send your news via email to gloria@communitynewspapers.com.


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About the Author

Gloria Burns
A graduate of the University of Florida with a major in Spanish, Burns has an extensive background in advertising, marketing and reciprocal trade, travel as well as non profit consulting and management. Burns' volunteer activities led her to become a columnist writing Gloria’s Gab, a column that focuses on the non-profit activity. Burns was Executive Director of the Jr. Orange Bowl Committee for 6 years and then served as the first Executive Director of Coral Gables Community Foundation for 14 years after which she helped the emerging Community Foundation of Pinecrest. Active in many non profits, she received the 2015-16 President's Best Member Award from the GFWC Coral Gables Woman's Club, 2012-13 CGWC Leadership Award, 2012-2013 Rotarian of the Year Award as RCCG Public Relations Chair and Fund raising Co-Chair, 2011 Florida Federation of Women’s Club Volunteer of the Year for the District 11 and honored by the City of Doral as one of their first recipients for the Doralian Women's Award. Among her list of current responsibilities, Burns co-chairs two annual student recognition breakfasts for the Coral Gables Friends of Education; helps coordinate charity partners for the Westin Colonnade's Annual Give Kids the World Breakfast; serves on the board of directors of Doral Business Council; is Parliamentarian and serves on the board of the GFWC Coral Gables Woman’s Club; serves the board of the Rotary Club of Coral Gables and is Publicity Chair; and is a member of the Jr. Orange Bowl Committee. Gloria is also an active member of the Music Ministry at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church where sings sings in the choir. She can be reached at gloria@communitynewspapers.com

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