Dog Days of Summer

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On Saturday, July 16, Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, Pinecrest, Palmetto Bay and Cutler Bay teamed up at Coral Reef Park to treat our dogs right. Hundreds turned out to participate in the Dogs of Summer Adoption & Training Expo. Dozens of caring service providers and vendors were on hand to talk everything canine.

Miami-Dade K-9 unit demonstrated how dogs are used in law enforcement; there was dog washing and grooming available with free nail clipping, training workshops and demonstrations and so much more. Miami-Dade County, along with the Humane Society, Petco, Knowles Animal Clinics and others took part in this fantastic event.

Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava loved how District 8 came together.

“Everyone cares about their pets!” Daniella said. “It’s inspiring. And now we have the country’s largest air-conditioned animal shelter right here in Miami-Dade County. Our goal is to find homes for every pet and we can help by remembering to spay and neuter.”

“It is doggone hot today, but this is a great event,” said Palmetto Bay Mayor Eugene Flinn, while holding his beloved [and micro-chipped] dog Timmy. “It breaks my heart every time someone loses a pet or we find a pet and we can’t reunite them with family. Microchipping geometrically increases the ability to get pets back to their owner. Today, with free chipping is the end of excuses.”

Gema Mena was one of the smart ones who brought her beloved dog Buzz for micro-chipping. “Buzz is part of our family, so it’s a great thing to protect him and make sure we can get him back.” With a short yelp, Miami-Dade County Animal Services had Buzz ready to track.

Adoption options were plentiful, as dozens of puppies to adult dogs were available to meet and bond with. Eleven year old Samuel Vitenson from South Miami was definitely in the spirit, “We adopted a dog in March and now he needs a companion. I like [the dog] Jasmine and want to take her home, but Mom has to decide if she can deal with another dog.”

Illuminated evening walk
Coral Reef Park, the gem of Palmetto Bay’s parks system, offers a wide variety of activities all day long; baseball, football, soccer, tennis, a playground, walking and exercise path, and more. But as soon as the sun sets, all but the tennis courts must be vacated until dawn.

Earlier this year, Palmetto Bay resurfaced the walking path that runs the entire perimeter of the park with a rubberized soft-feel material. Most people are thrilled with the result and want more.

So, in a phased experiment, the Village of Palmetto Bay is enhancing the path with solar LED path lights. “We’re doing the east side of the park this year,” explains Village Manager Ed Silva. “And we’ll work out way around from there.”

The lights are glued to manufactured concrete landscaping blocks and lined up about every six feet on either side of the path. This allows for flexibility in installation, and since it is all solar-powered, there is no wiring to install.

If the plan works, the Village may allow for walks beyond dusk and into the evening. Whatever the result, there is no doubt these lights add safety to the already enhanced walking path.

Palmetto Bay Downtown takes another step forward
FCI Residential, the apartment development arm of sugar producer Florida Crystals, paid $7.8 million for a 4-acre site at 17945 Franjo Road from Miami-based TotalBank in Palmetto Bay’s new downtown district.

The mixed-use project, called Atlantico Palmetto Bay, will have 271 apartments plus 7,010 square feet of retail space. The pedestrian-friendly project features interior, interconnected public walkways, widened landscaped sidewalks, a civic plaza and twice the amount of required open spaces.

It will be the first project under the rezoning plan the Village approved in December that created a Downtown Urban Village district with more density and mixed-use projects. TotalBank, the exiting landowner, has already moved its branch to South Dixie Highway.

Real estate update
Local expertise and realistic expectations are the keys to successfully selling your home. We’re in a transitional real estate market and NOW is a great time to know the value of your home. I’d be glad to provide you a private home evaluation. It’s easy to get started at, so why are you waiting?

Hal Feldman [MiamiHal] is a Realtor with RE/MAX Advance Realty. You can contact him with your story ideas or real estate questions at, or

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