King of Motown, Smokey Robinson, was in town recently for Jazz in the Gardens and took time out of his busy schedule to share with South Florida a signature brand of wines he has launched. During a get together while he was in town, Robinson generously donated several signed bottles for local charitable events including the Coral Gables Woman’s Club benefit for the Coral Gables Children’s Dental Clinic.
This icon of the music industry, who is as kind as he is talented, has written 4,000 songs that are the background music for most of our lives. Looking decades younger than he is, he is not a big drinker but was very involved in the taste and favors of the wines that carry his name. His wines may be purchased online at https://smokeyrobinsonwines.com
In other news, the Rotary Club of Freeport, Grand Bahama held its annual ball on Mar. 17. A few Rotarians from District 6990 were among those who traveled from South Florida to support this club’s event.
Among the guests were Rotary International president-elect Barry Rassin (Nassau Rotary); Past District Governor (Key Biscayne Rotary) Ellen Blasi; Assistance District Governor 2017-18 Wayne Russell; Assistant District Governor 2018-19 Rengin Johnson; and Assistant District Governor 2018-19 Yoli Woodbridge, from Coral Gables. Green was the order of the day for this St. Patrick’s affair that had many dancing the night away.
Speaking of Rotary, many local Rotarians are among the tens of thousands making plans for the upcoming Rotary International Convention in Toronto, Canada June 23-27. Rotarian may register at www.riconvention.org.
The Junior Orange Bowl Committee’s recent gala, emceed by Craig Stevens, also served as an installation for new officers. Among those installed were 2018-19 officers: president, Frandley DeFilie; president-elect, Isa Goenaga; vice president, Steven Gonzalez; vice president, Luis Quiñones; secretary, Ana Rivera, and treasurer, Aldo Castañeda.
The new board will work closely with Junior Orange Bowl executive director Alex Markel to continue the organization’s mission of showcasing our youth in every area from athletics to creative and cultural arts.
The gala also honored past presidents Don and Jeannett Slesnick, The Biltmore Hotel, and Kiwanis Club of Miami. The JOBC’s Empowered Youth honorees were sister Celine Borotto-Alvarez and Chelsea Rivero-Alvarez who were praised for their volunteerism.
Speaking of the Junior Orange Bowl and the Kiwanis Club of Miami, the Junior Orange Bowl Basketball tournament play, with support from the Kiwanians, continues as middle school teams will participate in invitational tournaments at Miami Springs Recreation Center in April. First up will be girls’ games on Friday, Apr. 6, 6-8 p.m., and than Saturday, Apr. 7, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Boys play Friday, Apr. 13, 6-8 p.m., and then on Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The Jr. Orange Bowl Basketball chair, Chuck Little, is to be applauded for his boundless energy and efforts to provide young basketball players with an opportunity to showcase their talents.
Gables Rotarians were treated to a great presentation on Mar. 15 by local attorney and RCCG pastpresident Frank Sexton, who by all accounts could teach history to college students. Frank is always entertaining and brings history to life like few others. Topic for this talk was the presentation on the War of 1812. Frank’s annual talks on different periods of American history are so popular that the room always is packed to capacity.
The following week, another great speaker, attorney Fred Woodbridge, discussed the topic of gun legislation and more.
Gables Rotarians meet Thursdays for lunch at the Hyatt Regency Coral Gables on the first, second and third week of each month. On the fourth Thursday, they meet for breakfast or evening social. Visiting Rotarians always are welcome.
Until next time, keep making each day count.