Rotary outreach and toy drives benefit many


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Rotarians have ongoing outreach efforts and during the holidays they are busier than ever. South Miami Rotarians once again helped wrap and collect gifts for seniors, something Club Past President Gabriel DeArmas coordinates every year with lots of help from club members including the usual suspects: Mike Sutta, Jeff McNabb and lots of other.

Collecting toys for children was another holiday effort for the Simes. Scott and Belinda Sime held their annual holiday party and toy drive recently collecting hundreds of toys for Lighthouse for the Blind. Scott, an Honorary Lighthouse for the Blind Board Member, and Belinda have been doing this toy drive for several years in conjunction with one of the very best parties of the year at their home. Lots of support came from Coral Gables Woman’s Club members , neighbors, friends and guests all of whom enjoyed the live music, Crepe Maker menus, over the top catering and drinks.

Gables Rotarians held their montly mixer with the Coral Gables Bar Association at Tapeo Eatery & Bar and collected toys ultimately distributed to the Marines’ Toys for Tots, Lighthouse for the Blind through the Simes and the Coral Gables “ Free” Children’s Dental Clinic for its holiday kids party. Among the many enjoying the event were RCCG President-Elect Kelly Garces, Bruce Bounds , Hadley Williams, Greg Martini, Walter Alvarez, and Carol Brock, to mention a few.

The Marines Toy for Tots donations from that mixer were dropped off at the Intercontinental Hotel Doral with additional toys being dropped off when Channel 10’s Jacey Birch and Eric Yutzy and Marines travelled around South Florida making pick ups all over town.

Yet another holiday tradition for the Coral Gables Woman’s Club is their big holiday party for the children of the working poor who receive more than $250,000 in free dental care annually from the club’s childrens dental clinic. Santa was on hand for that party giving each child a $15 gift card donated by Coral Gables Hospital from staff as well as members of the club and friends. A $500 donation from Mitchell & West and some money from the Ruiz family paid for 4 bikes that were raffled off that day with additional raffle prizes coming from the joint Gables Bar/Rotary mixer.

the committee goes right into the JOBC’s International Tennis Tournament (Dec. 14-23); the Jr. Orange Bowl’s Annual National Basketball Classic at Miami Palmetto High School on December 27, 28 and December 30, and the International Golf Tournament Jan. 2-6, 2020. For more on these and other JOBC events, visit

Finally, save the date, January 7th , for the Gringo Bingo (7-9p.m.). That night CGWC will direct the proceeds to Joshua’s Heart Foundation. The Coral Gables Woman’s Club is extremely grateful for Clutch Burger’s generous support in hosting these monthly events. As always, Clutch Burger owner Steven Bradley will entertain and call bingo while celebrity DJ Germain will once again donate his services providing music adding to the overall party atmosphere at these games.. For tickets, email

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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