Wrapping up the old year and starting the new one

Hilarity reigned supreme at the King Mango Strut Parade in Coconut Grove where thousands of South Floridians and visitors enjoyed yet another successful event on Sunday, December 27, 2009. This annual spoof on the former King Orange Parade always provides lots of political and current events humor that sets this parade as unique and lots of fun. This year’s parade had represented Balloon Boy, the Salahis, and Tiger Woods, a senator or two and lots more that brought smiles and laughter from a very appreciative crowd

The New Year brings some great outdoor events and among the first will be the 59th Annual BeauxArts Festival at the LoweArt Museum on the grounds of the University of Miami, January 9 and 10, 2010. Thanks to the support of Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables, Geico and Sir Galloway Cleaners, more than 100,000 patrons are expected to enjoy viewing and buying from as many as 250 juried exhibitors from around the US and abroad with cash awards totaling $20,000. In addition, look for the famed Student Artist Showcase, featuring art from students all over Miami-Dade County.

This event offers art for many budgets, live eclectic music and other free entertainment, children’s art experiences, fabulous dining options, and free admission all weekend to the Lowe Art Museum. One dining experience you will want to check out will be Gables Rotarian Bruce Kerestes’ amazing chicken wings. Ably assisted by J. Guarch and Abe Horowitz, these Rotarians will be selling wings to bolster their Club’s charitable giving coffers and, with 5,000 wings being prepared, they should do well. The Rotary Club of Coral Gables’ most recent donations were made to its Elder Theatre Project, a Halloween party for Merrick School for the mentally challenged, and to F.S. Tucker Elementary School to purchase computer headphones.

Speaking of charitable gifts, Gables Rotary’s Charitable Fund recently received a $10,000 grant from the Lady Suzanna P & Carlton Tweed Foundation. This money is earmarked to help with operating expenses for an upcoming Concert to End Polio which will be held at Gusman Hall at the University of Miami. The concert will be held on March 25, 2010. There will be 600 tickets and sales will be split between five local Rotary Clubs, including South Miami Rotary, with all of the proceeds benefiting PolioPlus.

In other news, Michael W. Casey III, a prominent labor and employment attorney and Managing Shareholder of the Miami office of national law firm Epstein Becker Green, was honored with the 2009 Distinguished Citizen Award by the South Florida Council, Boy Scouts of America.

The award was presented at the Council’s annual awards dinner and holiday auction on December 3. This Award recognizes community leaders for exemplifying the values of scouting through their service.

Casey has held leadership positions with the South Florida Council and Boy Scouts of America for more than 35 years, and served as President from 1982-1983.

By the way, in 2010, the Boy Scouts of America will be celebrating their 100th Anniversary. Congratulations to all those who work and volunteer for that fine organization. Until next week, keep making each day count and may you all have a happy and prosperous New Year.

Gloria Burns is Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Pinecrest, a 501 (c) (3) non profit organization, as well as a columnist for Community Newspapers.

Keeping abreast of community activities is a challenge. If you would like to submit information for this column, send your news via email to < galburns@aol.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. 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 gloria@communitynewspapers.com

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