Smartride, JOBC and Holiday Family Fun Day 5K usher in season

Smartride, JOBC and Holiday Family Fun Day 5K usher in season

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The annual 165-mile two-day Smartride brought in more than $1.3 million for AIDS-related charities the weekend of Nov. 15-16, with 100 percent of moneys collected going to charity.

Once again a team of members from the GFWC Coral Gables Woman’s Club supported the event with their time, talent and treasure, donating to the cause and manning water stations for the two days in their Wizard of Oz costumes. With a different them eevery year, the group, which became involved because of Glen Weinzimer from the first ride, is led by their pit manager Carmen Suarez. Those volunteering for this year’s ride were club members Dr. Iris Torres, Mayra Dominguez, Ruth Martinez, Linda Hartwell, Donna Myrill, Vicki McGroarty, Dale Poster-Ellis, and Martha Black. In addition, club member Cindie Ruiz, one of 450 riders participating, rode the 165 miles from Miami to Key West representing the club.

Speaking of the Coral Gables Woman’s Club, this active group’s next fundraiser, Gringo Bingo, will be Dec. 3, 7-9 p.m. Generously hosted every month by Clutch Burger on Giralda Plaza, the next event will benefit the Junior Orange Bowl Festival. As always, DJ Germain will provide music and the very entertaining Clutch Burger owner, Steven Bradley, will call bingo and award great prizes donated by local merchants. To reserve space send email to or text me at 305-0968-3090.

Dec. 5 marks the 86th anniversary of the repeal of the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (Prohibition). Join in some Speakeasy fun at the Coral Gables Woman’s Club that night with music and spirits. Proceeds from the event will benefit the club’s free children’s dental clinic. For more information on that fun night, visit

Mitchell & West LLC, now is in its sixth year of sponsoring a great family fun morning in the park across from Coral Gables City Hall. What began as a fundraiser for Alzheimer’s now has helped a variety of charitable organizations.

The fun begins at 7:30 a.m. With cash prizes for top overall winners — three each for men and women. Rain or shine, this is a great race. Register at Among those benefiting from the 2019 race will be the Coral Gables Children’s Dental Clinic, owned and operated by the Coral Gables Woman’Club. This clinic provides more than $240,000 in free dental services to the children of the working poor.

The Plaza Health Network Foundation’s “Women of Distinction & Caring” fundraising luncheon honored eight dynamic women on Nov, 15, at the Hilton Miami Downtown. The affair was chaired by Norma Jean Abraham who seems to be everywhere making a positive impact wherever she goes much like those being honored.

The festivities this year began with a champagne reception, boutiques and a silent auction coordinated by Joanna Barusch and Nancy Schwartz. Following the reception, guests moved on to an impressive luncheon program. This year marks the event’s 10th anniversary. The 2019 honorees included Hon. Amy N. Dean; Lilliam Machado; Barbara Reese; Margaret Pericak-Vance, PhD; Barbara Montford, MD; Michele Ryder, MSN, RN, MSHSA; Patricia Whitely, EdD, and Silvia Elena Rios.

Proceeds from this event help The Plaza Health Network Foundation, a 501(c)(3), fund its patient focused innovative programs and services that go beyond what is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and insurance. The foundation contributes to covering the costs of $2 million of uncompensated care provided by the Plaza Health Network annually to patients and residents in need.

In other happenings, Well Groomed on Miracle Mile on Nov. 15 hosted a lovely Cafe Con Chamber event offering a great way to kick off the weekend. The place was packed with members and guests enjoying a lovely buffet of breakfast treats and, of course, coffee.

Mark Trowbridge, chamber president, was on hand to thank Rick Alberty and Well Groomed’s owner, Al Maulini, for hosting the morning mixer. Among the many enjoying the morning were Nicolas Eterovic, Dr. Kayla Marmoros, Dr. John Raffle, Kayla Blake, Joanna Davila, Lilian Ser, and Stefi Barreda.

Finally, heartfelt condolences go out to Jack and Dorothy Thomson and the entire family of Janice Mills Thomson whose life was ended all too soon. Janice was a ray of sunshine who inspired many and was well loved. She also was a big fan of Tim Tebow; so, the family appropriately asked that in lieu of flowers, etc/, donations be made in her name to the Tim Tebow Foundation at

Until next time, keep making each day count.

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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. Active in many non profits, she received numerous awards across the community. 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 she sings in the choir. She can be reached at


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