Florida Trikers Association and Stormy Hill Harley-Davidson know how to have fun for a worthy cause: Pink Bra Ride for a Cure. Men and women were decked out in pink bras Oct. 26 as they left the Clermont motorcycle dealership and rode to Lake Harris Hideaway in Tavares. The inaugural event was a fundraiser for the Greater Clermont Cancer Foundation.
“Passport to Africa” was the theme for LifeStream Foundation’s annual Gala of Hope fundraiser Oct. 25 at Lake Receptions in Mount Dora. Proceeds from the event will benefit children and their families who cannot afford the agency’s services. LifeStream is a nonprofit behavioral health and social services organization serving Lake, Sumter, Citrus, Marion, Hernando and Orange counties. More than 24,000 individuals were served last year.
The 22nd annual Leesburg Chamber Golf Classic was hosted Oct. 25 at Continental Country Club in Wildwood. The event provided members with the opportunity to enjoy a day on the links with business friends, clients or prospects, and to network with the Leesburg Chamber’s leadership, board members and elected officials.
“A Havana Evening Beneath the Stars” was the theme of an Oct. 18 fundraiser at the Leesburg home of Genene Rawls, chairman of Women for Hospice. The event benefited Tavares Hospice House and Patient Care in central Lake County. Local CPA Sandy Stokes was honored during the event for his extensive efforts in the community.
Lake-Sumter State College hosted its eighth annual Distinguished Alumni and Hall of Fame awards banquet Oct. 17 at Mission Inn Resort & Club in Howey-in-the-Hills in honor of people making a difference in the community or who have impacted the college. The honorees were Marilyn Budzynski, Mike DeGraw, Edward Daugherty, Mark Logas, Dean Simmons II, Alissa Sustarsic, Andrea Brooks and Pete Wahl.
The Ladies in Philanthropy (LIPs) group for Leesburg Regional Medical Center hosted its seventh annual Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon Oct. 11 at Paquette’s Show Barn in Leesburg. All proceeds benefit the LIPs mammogram voucher program, which provides free mammograms for anyone in the community who cannot afford the diagnostic test. Dr. Celia K. Nelson served as the keynote speaker.
Showing it off for a cause
The 12th annual Bras for the Cause and Boxers, too, presented by the Greater Clermont Cancer Foundation, was themed “Puttin’ on the Glitz.” It was held at the Clermont Performing Arts Center and featured a fun-filled fashion show with bras and boxers designed, decorated, and modeled by local residents. GCCF is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that provides financial assistance, scholarships, and other free services to cancer patients, their families, and caregivers in the community.
Though rain forced the event inside the armory, it didn’t ruin the taste of any of the great offerings from Taste of Lake & Business Expo. Featured food included everything from seafood to barbecue, appetizers to desserts, and sangria to beer. Entertainment for the evening included Kelly Jarrard’s sultry tones and the antics of the Blues Brothers. The rain didn’t dampen anything as hundreds of guests enjoyed an evening of food, drink, and music.
It’s still amazing!
The sixth annual Amazing Race for Charity was another challenging feat this year. Featuring more than 20 challenges along a five-mile route, the race is for teams of two. The challenges can be as simple as solving a puzzle or reciting the Miranda rights or as difficult as rappelling off a tower. Participants don’t know what to expect until they arrive for the race. By the end of the day, racers have learned a great deal about the host city, worked together as a team, enjoyed (or endured) a great workout, and benefited local charities.
A diamond fundraiser
Lake Cares Gala & Silent Auction actually was a yearlong event. Eleven women wore a diamond necklace valued at more than $20,000 for a month each. The necklace, titled Bella Diamante, was part of the fundraiser for the 10th anniversary of Lake Cares. Carol Lynn Nelson was the winner of the necklace, and her name was drawn by Cheryl Jarvis, author of “The Necklace,” the novel that spurred the idea. Irene O’Malley, the pantry’s executive director, surprised everyone by announcing Maribella is the necklace to be raffled next year as the saga of “The Necklace” continues.
A roar from the past
Vintage and classic race boats were displayed at Wooton Park for the 10th annual Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta. Since Tavares is a major stop on the Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit, there were 75 lovingly restored vintage and classic race boats doing demonstration laps on Lake Dora. Visitors were also able to view the boats up close in the pit area. The daylong event was free and featured large heats of all the APBA vintage classes, including outboards, classic glass, small hydros, flatbottoms, skiffs, speedsters, gold cuppers, and fire-breathing grand prix hydros.
This event was smokin’!
The Downtown Leesburg Business Association and the Leesburg Partnership had great success with the annual BBQ, Brews, and Blues event in Towne Square. Plenty of cooks in the outdoor kitchens prepared many pounds of great pork, brisket, and chicken for everyone to enjoy. Those who walked around sampled barbecue and also voted for first-, second-, and third- places for trophies and cash prizes. Blues master David Julia provided the music for the popular event.
@ Sunset park / Photos: Nicole Hamel. It’s always a culinary treat when everyone gets a taste of the best eating places in town. The 19th annual Taste of Mount Dora was no exception. Downtown streets were closed and residents and visitors were able to casually stroll through Sunset Park and taste the treats from 20 local restaurants. There was also a silent auction and some great games of chance, as well as live entertainment.
@ Wooten Park / Photos: Nicole Hamel. They may not have been Vikings, but their dragonboats performed beautifully on Lake Dora during DragonFest 2019. Hosted by Lake County Golden Triangle Rotary Club, the colorful event featured dragonboat races, an arts and crafts fair, live entertainment, a car show, a 5K road race, and multiple food vendors. It was a great day of fun on water and land.
@ Orlando Science Center / Photos: Douglas Tyler. During the 10th annual Celebration of Life Gala for AdventHealth Waterman, guests enjoyed a silent auction, elegant dining, and entertainment by MPire, along with a special drawing for a pair of garnet and diamond earrings. The first phase of the emergency services expansion will be opened this month. All proceeds from the gala supported this campaign.
@ The Villages / Photos: Nicole Hamel. The Southern Draft Horse Association sponsored the National Draft Pulling Championship, featuring more than 45 teams of sturdy workhorses at The Villages Polo Club. The sport of horse pulling is simply that—a team of horses pulling heavy loads. The best horses in this competitive sport are worked daily to prepare for the contests. Some may think it’s not good for these horses to be pulling such heavy loads, but the truth is, draft horses were bred to handle weight and pulling. The winning lightweight team was Durgin Pulling and the winning heavyweight team was Roger and Smock.
@ Leesburg Boat Club / Photos: Nicole Hamel. Mardi Gras is one of the most popular celebrations in Leesburg, and one of the highlights is the crowning of the king and queen. This year’s royalty was King Rex, Steve Bell, and Queen Divine, Lyndsi Johnson. All guests wore formal attire or costumes and enjoyed the music of Hypersona. The royals were crowned at the Leesburg Boat Club.
BABETTE’S EXPANDS TO A NEW STORE IN BROWNWOOD PADDOCK SQUARE
Popular furniture and décor store Babette’s Furniture & Home has opened a new location in Brownwood Paddock Square in The Villages. The 12,000-square-foot showroom features the same quality furniture and home décor found in the Leesburg store. The grand opening was truly a celebration of 30 years of serving this area with an unparalleled reputation for quality and service.