Lake and Sumter Style Magazine
4:05 pm EDT
Tuesday, April 13, 2021



The eighth annual list of what’s Hot! Hot! HOT!

Stories: Leigh Neely, James Combs, Theresa Campbell, Chris Gerbasi


Photo: Anthony Rao

Hottest swimsuit trends

The Sunshine State provides opportunities to enjoy lap swims, water sports, strolls on the beach, and relaxation by the pool, and Villager Barbara Iannielli has a swimsuit for each activity. 

“I have about 20 swimsuits,” says Barbara, who works as a boutique consultant at Stein Mart in Lady Lake. In her role, she assists shoppers in selecting clothing—and yes, bathing suits—that are flattering for their needs, body type, and interests. 

“This is a gorgeous bathing suit,” Barbara says as she shows a black mesh panel one-piece swimsuit with cap sleeves that she loves to wear when playing water volleyball. 

“Tankinis are wonderful, too. You can feel sexy in it, and it will cover parts where you want coverage,” Barbara says of the swimsuit that features a tank top with bikini bottom. 

“You can always interchange your tops with one bottom,” she adds, noting mix-and-match pieces are a great way to expand your swimwear attire. Another new style is two-piece swimsuits with side-tie bottoms that can be adjusted to be briefs or bikinis.

The latest looks in one-piece bathing suits: plunging necklines, keyhole cutouts, halter tops, high necks, and those with ruched fronts for tummy control. 

“There is definitely a bathing suit for every person,” Barbara says, adding August is when new styles for 2019 will be appearing at her store. “What’s hot in swimsuits is what is hot for your body type.” 

Sophie & Trey, an online clothing brand, claims red is the “hottest” color in swimwear. “There isn’t a color that can symbolize the feminine beauty and strength as perfectly as the color red,” the company says in a press release. “It’s a color that perfectly conveys the message of empowerment and positivity.” 


VIA Entertainment. Photo: Nicol Hamel

Hot entertainment

Via Entertainment: This family-friendly center at the newly renamed Lake Square Mall offers 22 bowling lanes, an arcade with hundreds of games, and go-kart racing at Adrenaline Rush Raceway. 10401 U.S. Highway 441, Leesburg. 352.314.3939.

Mind Masters: This “coming soon” attraction will offer an escape—a new kind of puzzle/trap/escape room that promises to test puzzle-solving skills, teamwork, and imagination with multiple scenarios. 1457 E. Highway 50, Clermont. 352.409-0943.

Windy Acres Farm: The arena hosts barrel racing, team roping, ranch sorting, speed events, and other rodeo competitions. The Planet Festival, four days of music with primitive camping available, will be staged at the farm Oct. 18-21. 1350 Miller Blvd., Fruitland Park. 352.408.7308.

Epic Theatres: Mount Dora’s long-awaited multiplex opened in the spring, and it’s a great place to catch hot movies or to cool off at the bar. Amenities include two Epic XL 70-foot-wide screens, laser projection, and reserved seating. 2300 Spring Harbor Blvd. 352.720.3179 or 352.268.1559 (movieline).

GatorWorld: Every day is an adventure at GatorWorld Parks of Florida, a 15-acre preserve and drive-through park with more than 400 rescued alligators. Visitors can view and feed the state’s most popular reptile. 492 W. Highway 44, Wildwood. 352.462.9500.

Hot movies

“The Spy Who Dumped Me”: An espionage misadventure with Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon, Aug. 3.

“Venom”: You never can have too many Marvel films at the multiplex; starring Tom Hardy in the character’s origin story, Oct. 5.

“A Star Is Born”: A Hollywood staple starring Bradley Cooper, who also directs Lady Gaga in the modernized Judy Garland role, Oct. 5.

“First Man”: Ryan Gosling portrays Neil Armstrong, the reclusive first man on the moon, Oct. 12.

“Halloween”: Yes, Jamie Lee Curtis still is in danger from Michael Myers in 2018, Oct. 19. 

“Can You Ever Forgive Me?”: Ubiquitous Melissa McCarthy takes a less farcical turn in a true story about a celebrity biographer, Oct. 19.

“Bohemian Rhapsody”: Rami Malek reportedly is the embodiment of late Queen singer Freddie Mercury, Nov. 2.

“Creed II”: The follow-up to the highly praised original, continuing the “Rocky” storyline with Michael B. Jordan and Sylvester Stallone, Nov. 21.

“Robin Hood”: This version of the timeless action/adventure story stars Taron Egerton and Jamie Foxx, Nov. 21.

 “Holmes and Watson”: Another venerable tale but with wacky new blood: Will Ferrell as Sherlock Holmes and John C. Reilly as Dr. Watson, Dec. 21.



Beach bound

Stephen Leatherman, also known is Dr. Beach, is a geoscientist and coastal ecologist who he touts himself on his website as “one of the world’s top coastal experts.” 

Each year, he ranks the country’s top 10 beaches by using metrics such as water quality, best sand, amenities, beach safety, and environmental management. Two Florida beaches made his 2018 list:

  • Kapalua Bay Beach, HI
  • Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach, NC
  • Grayton Beach State Park, FL
  • Coopers Beach, NY
  • Coast Guard Beach, MA
  • Lighthouse Beach, NC
  • Caladesi Island State Park, FL
  • Hapuna Beach State Park, HI
  • Coronado Beach, CA
  • Beachwalker Park, SC

Of course, visiting the majority of those beaches is not practical for many Floridians. If  you want to stay in the area, here are venues with beach areas near lakes and springs:

  • Ski Beach, Leesburg
  • Eaton’s Beach, Weirsdale
  • Lake Louisa State Park, Clermont
  • Alexander Springs, Altoona
  • Wekiva Falls RV Resort, Sorrento


Hot! New stores at Lake Square Mall

Exciting things, including a great variety of new stores, are happening at Lake Square Mall in Leesburg. When Village Lake Promenade purchased the mall at the end of last year, there were more than 30 vacancies. Eighteen vacancies have been filled.

  • Georges Marciano Ranch: This store was founded by Georges Marciano, the founder of Guess, and features high-end denim jeans and polo shirts.
  • Lucky 7: The ultimate edgy T-shirt label for men, women, and kids! No limits to what they’ll put on a Tee!
  • Pajar: Specializing in outdoor wear and water-resistant shoes and boots.
  • Yvonne Marie: A unique boutique with one-of-a-kind women’s styles created by Yvonne Marie herself. All clothing is designed for a slimming fit.
  • Boutique Emmanuel’s: A men’s suit store specializing in fittings to be sure every suit it sells fits the customer perfectly. 

But wait, that’s not all! Two other new attractions are coming soon to Lake Square Mall:

  • Winterland: An indoor ice skating rink that will have a “chalet” experience complete with food, drinks, a live DJ, and light shows.
  • Le Chocolatier: An upscale chocolate store inspired by the candy in Paris.

In addition, Via Entertainment added two new experiences:

  • Adrenaline Rush: An indoor go-carting experience like no other!
  • Kidz Corner: A room full of giant inflatable bounce houses and obstacle courses. Every kid’s dream!

There also are three new attractions for children near the food court:

  • Sweet Amanda’s: A totally customizable candy experience.
  • Animals of Oz: Motorized animals that children can ride.
  • Bugzy’s Power Jumping: A bungee jumping-meets-trampoline experience.


Photo: Anthony Rao

Cool, ‘hot’ hair colors

Stylists at Mia Bella Salon and Spa in Fruitland Park were inspired by paintings and photos of flowers, fish, sunsets, and fire that sparked their artistic creativity with hair color and styles. Check out their creations in photos by Style photographer Anthony Rao. 


Inspiration: Sunset

Model: Morgan Bracco 

Stylist: Kayla Smith 

“I used a cherry red, a red, orange, and yellow. It’s fire!” Kayla says, adding it was the first time her model had color put in her hair. “This is exciting,” Morgan adds. 


Inspiration: Fish with scales

Model: Alexa Jalbert-Whitaker

Stylists: Barber Marcus Davison and colorist Kylar Jalbert-Whitaker

“Alexa has been wanting something fun and crazy for a while, so this was a blast,” Kylar says. She loves the ocean, so this was a perfect fit for her.” 


Inspiration: Autumn 

Model: Camden Seal 

Stylist: Jessica Karpowicz 

“I had to lift it to get it really blonde, and then I put four different colors into her hair and blended it all together, so that it just melded,” Jessica says. 


Inspiration: Pastel flowers 

Model: Haylee Hibbard

Stylist: Danielle Daugherty

“Instead of coloring hair blonde, what’s really in now is having subtle hints of baby blue, baby pink, and a little lavender,” says Danielle, who also styled rosettes in the back of her model’s hair. 


Model: Anastasia Votino; Model photo by Anthony Rao; Clothing courtesy of Stein Mart, The Villages

Hot! Treats for cooling off

Ice cream is a soft treat that comes in many flavors. There are many debates about how much better the old-fashioned, hand-churned ice cream was. There’s no doubt almost everyone enjoys going out for that special ice-cold treat, whether it’s ice cream or frozen yogurt. Style surveyed local shops to get their most popular flavors. Butter pecan won hands down as the favorite at Häagen-Dazs in The Villages, Bruster’s in Clermont, and Russell Stover in Wildwood. However, there are lots of other treats available in almost every part of Lake and Sumter counties.


Dairy Ranch, Leesburg

Praline ice cream


Central Avenue Treat, Umatilla

Chocolate coconut almond ice cream


Yummi’s Frozen Yogurt & Café, Clermont

Orange creamcicle yogurt


Village Coffee Pot, Mount Dora

Salted caramel ice cream


Bloom’s Baking House and Restaurant, Leesburg

Salted Caramel Bananas Foster ice cream


Photo: Nicole Hamel

La Petit Sweet, Mount Dora 

Macaron ice cream sandwich


Kilwin’s, The Villages

Sea salt caramel ice cream


Mystic Ice Cream, Fruitland Park

Kahlua fudge (alcoholic) ice cream

Mystic S’mores ice cream


Scooples, Wildwood

Peanut butter sundae


Scoops on 5th, Mount Dora

Chocolate ice cream


Ritter’s Frozen Custard, Clermont

Vanilla ice cream and yogurt


Nail art is hot, hot, hot!

Three-dimensional embellishments (tiny rhinestones, seashells, crystals), shiny, bright-colored gel or shellac polish, cut-out tips, sparkling glitter, floral or bold graphic art designs are among the latest trends—and Instagram moments—in showing off fashionable nails.

Nail art is the rage.

“I do more in nail designs and embellish the nails with nail jewels,” says Ginger Smith, nail technician at Renew Day Spa in Leesburg. “A lot of my clients tell me what they are wearing for a special event. I go with their outfit for nail colors and I kind of make up my own design with what they are going to be doing.”

One of Ginger’s clients requested watermelon slices with tiny black seeds painted on her toenails for a summer concert, which the technician found fun to do.

“Go with what you feel is artsy and fun,” Ginger says, adding August is the perfect time for it. “Right now, we are doing the corals, beachy colors, hot pinks, vibrant oranges, reds, tangerines, and we also do a lot of the sparkle and glitter top coats.”

There are no rules when it comes to nail art. Different colors and a variety of designs can be used, such as glittery copper fingernails dipped in black paint at the tips for an edgier look.


Hot heads

Discharging negative emotions actually may help you better understand and work out your frustrations. Lake & Sumter Style recently gave local residents an opportunity to do just that. We approached seven people and asked them the following question: “What is the one thing in life that makes you the angriest?”

Here are their “hothead” responses. 


“I’m very upset about immigration and gun control. As far as immigration, I think it’s extremely cruel how our government separates families. And when it comes to gun control, the whole country has its head up its butt. My daughter is a teacher in Florida. I guess it is her job to take a bullet for her students.”

—Richard Horsley


“I get mad when people do not acknowledge what’s going on around them. For instance, if someone is in a bad emotional state of mind, many people ignore them because they don’t want to be brought down to that level. Why not lift them up and brighten their day? Helping others goes a long way in helping you achieve peace of mind.”

—Brittany Goff


“I cannot stand when people show a lack of appreciation. So many people have so much but cannot appreciate it because they’re always wanting more. It is very sad.”

—Taeylor LaForest


“I’m angry at the Leesburg City Council. We have a homeless problem and can definitely do something about it, but the city of Leesburg refuses to do anything. Several churches wanted homeless shelters and even detailed how they could be profitable for the city. But they were turned down every time.”

—Andrew Tawes


“Slow drivers irritate me. I live in Lake Mary but drive every day to Leesburg for work. Drivers on County Road 44 oftentimes drive 10 miles under the speed limit. It drives me nuts.”

—Brooke Borderick


“What makes me the angriest is when people are jerks to other people. We all have our moments, but life is too short to take your frustrations out on other people. Treat people the way you would like to be treated. It’s that simple.”

—Tiffany Jones


“My ex-wife. She’s responsible for half the crap that has ever happened to me. Her father was just as bad because he’s rich and had the means to make my life terrible. Needless to say, I haven’t talked to my ex-wife in 30 years.”

—Randall Thomas


Photo: Nicole Hamel

Hot jobs in the summertime

They’re out there every day with the sun beaming down its heat, but they get the job done.

It’s hard not to appreciate the value of the people who do hot jobs. In Florida, the heat can be brutal in summer, but houses need washing, lifeguards must protect swimmers, and when you need a new roof, you gotta have it.

Cleaning house

A native of Lady Lake, Scott Finney has been pressure-washing houses since 1992. 

“There are definitely things you have to do to make it easier on you in the heat,” Scott says. “Wear all-cotton clothes because they’re breathable. Wear a straw hat and sunglasses.”

Scott says his workers start early in the morning and usually have five homes done by 2pm. For 14 years, he was a one-guy company, but with the growth of The Villages came the growth of Finney’s Professional Pressure Washing LLC.

“We also make sure our employees eat right, meaning no fattening foods in the heat. They need carbs and protein,” Scott says. “We drink a bottle of water every 30 minutes. You have to be careful not to drink too much Gatorade.”

On a hot tin roof

Mike “Spike” Jones oversees production and personnel management at Bone Dry Roofing in Altoona. He and his crew do the metal roofing projects. Their day starts around 7am and often continues until 6pm or later. However, they’re not on the roof all day.

“It’s super bright up there, and everything you touch is burning hot. Even gloves get too hot,” Spike says. “Also, you can’t always wear gloves because it affects how you handle the metal.”

There’s always plenty of water on hand, and all the men bring extra shirts because dry shirts keep you cooler; everyone wears hats for protection.

“We pack our lunches—usually sandwiches and fruit,” Spike says. “We don’t do much fast food. During the heat of the day, we take breaks in the shade under trees with water. A lot of times, you pour it on yourself just to cool down and you drink lots of it, too.”

On guard

With a pool teeming with swimmers of all ages, a lifeguard is vital. Michaella Strong is heading to Santa Fe College this fall, but she has enjoyed many summers sitting under the big umbrella in the lifeguard chair. 

“We always have an umbrella and we use sunscreen all the time,” Michaella says. “We have to have breaks about every 30 minutes or so. It keeps us alert and fresh.”

Certification meant the first part of training was done in the classroom, where she learned CPR and first aid. Outside training meant she took turns being a victim or a rescuer.

“The hotter days are tough, and there are usually more people in the pool on hotter days,” Michaella says. “But lifeguards can’t get in the pool.”

The anger of fire

Guilherme Farias is a firefighter/EMT and a member of the Special Operations Response Team (SORT) at Station 90, Squad 9, in Clermont. Guilherme says fighting fires in Florida’s unrelenting heat is horrible.

“One of the most difficult times to do it is when humidity is high, and the heat index is 102 to 106 degrees,” Guilherme says. “We put on our bunker gear, those familiar yellow outfits that don’t breathe. They have three layers and weigh between 50 and 60 pounds and heat your body another 10 degrees.”

Guilherme says the heat inside the clothing, which is designed to keep the fire out, is about 126 degrees, and the outside heat pumps it up to 140 or 150 degrees before they go into the house that’s on fire.

“If you catch a fire at 2pm when the sun is angry and the heat is radiating from the house, it’s awful,” he says. “After the fire is controlled, you have a headache due to dehydration.”

Because he is a member of SORT, Guilherme also works in hazmat suits when needed. “These suits do not breathe at all. It just becomes muggy inside the suit,” he says. “Vehicle accidents are difficult, too, because when you’re working an extraction standing on asphalt with 20 pounds of equipment; it can really put a strain on your body.”

The firefighters work 24-hour shifts with 48 hours off in between. “That 24 hours can be an extremely long day; sometimes you don’t get any sleep,” Guilherme says.

Moving right along

Though Style attempted to connect with several lawnmowing companies, it’s just not a good time for year for that. According to Greg Hawthorne Lawn Maintenance, there’s no time to stop. “With the rain we’ve had lately, we’re constantly busy,” Greg says.



Job statistics for Lake and Sumter counties

Largest industry sectors

  • Health care and social assistance: 19.7% of employment
  • Retail trade: 17% of employment
  • Accommodation and food services: 11.8% of employment
Source: Labor Market Statistics, Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages Program 


Largest employers

1,000+ employees

  • Florida Hospital Waterman
  • Leesburg Regional Medical Center
  • South Lake Hospital

500-1,000 employees

  • Cornerstone Hospice
  • Lake Port Square
  • LifeStream Behavioral Center

250-500 employees

  • Bridgewater Assisted Living
  • Cutrale Citrus Juices USA
  • Dura-Stress Inc.
  • Hewitt Contracting Co. Inc.
  • Interim Healthcare
  • Lady Lake Specialty Care
  • Lake-Sumter State College
  • Villages Media Group
  • Waterman Village
Source: Lake County website, 


The 10 hottest jobs in Florida

  1. Statistician
  2. Rod buster
  3. Nurse practitioner
  4. Miner
  5. Pipe insulator
  6. Physician assistant
  7. Cement mason
  8. Physical therapy assistant
  9. Occupational therapy assistant
  10. Mechanical installer
Source: Florida Department of Labor, 2017


Hot music tours

Top acts representing all genres are performing this year at Orlando venues:

Vans Warped Tour, featuring 50 eclectic alternative bands, travels cross-country for the last time, Aug. 3 at Tinker Field.

Shake your hips with Colombian seductress Shakira, Aug. 14 at Amway Center.

The B-52s make the House of Blues their love shack in a retro rock show Aug. 19.

Jay-Z and Beyoncé get out of the house for a night on the town Aug. 29 at Camping World Stadium.

Rhymin’ Paul Simon stops at Amway Center Sept. 11 for his “Homeward Bound” farewell.

It’s Fall Out Boy “Mania,” the name of the band’s latest disc and tour, Sept. 16 at Amway Center.

Pogo-stick to punk originals Social Distortion Sept. 20 at House of Blues, Orlando.

Former Talking Head David Byrne brings a typically unique stage show to the Phillips Center Sept. 28.

Father John Misty espouses his mysterious satirical musings Sept. 29 at Hard Rock Live.

Elton John says, “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”…for the next three years. Hold him closer, tiny dancer, Nov. 27 at Amway Center.


Hot local artist: Jeff Whitfield

Striking a chord with local music lovers.

There’s only one opportunity for a first impression. Singer and songwriter Jeff Whitfield certainly made the most of his. 

At 17, he landed his first gig at the now-defunct Eduardo’s Station in downtown Mount Dora. Impressed by his voice, the restaurant’s manager asked Jeff to perform every Wednesday night. However, it came with a stipulation.

“She asked me how old I was, and when I told her, she told me I’d have to show her my report card because she wanted to make sure I was passing in school,” Jeff says.

That launched his musical career. Today, the 42-year-old Mount Plymouth resident performs his signature mixture of blues, pop, and rock at venues such as Ruby Street Grille in Tavares, Pisces Rising in Mount Dora, and 1884 Restaurant and Bar in Eustis. 

When performing, Jeff sings his own versions of cover songs, as well as music from his three released albums: “Kindred Bridges” in 1998, “Imaginary Way” in 2004, and “Choices” in 2015. He wrote or co-wrote the songs on his albums. 

“I will perform everything from 1930s blues to classic rock to a song by Alice in Chains,” says the 1994 graduate of Mount Dora High School.

Sometimes, the songs work on an emotional level. 

“I was performing at Biketoberfest in Daytona and noticed a giant biker with a big beard sitting at a table near the stage. I sang Sam Cooke’s ‘A Change Is Gonna Come,’ and at the end, the biker was enthusiastically applauding and openly weeping. His brother had just passed away, and that song was special to both of them.”

After performing in Lake County for 20 years, Jeff has gained loyal followers. He hopes to have a larger reach in the next few years by producing more music videos on YouTube. However, with a wife and two children, there’s no rush to achieve national stardom. 

“I haven’t had that overnight success like some musicians, but that’s OK because I’m making a living doing what I love.”


Photo: Nicole Hamel

Hot dogs

1. Chili/2. Coney Island

Let’s not worry about semantics or differences between these two delicious dogs because that’s wasting time that could be spent on eating them. Also, don’t worry about the counterintuitive recommendation to try a chili dog at a place called Coney’s and a Coney dog at a place that doesn’t call its dog “Coney.” Detroit lays claim to the authentic Coney Island hot dog (sorry, not sorry, New York), and Irene’s Ice Cream & Deli Sandwiches in Leesburg comes close to that authenticity by topping its quarter-pound beef dog with “Michigan sauce,” a heap of finely chopped ground beef. In the other hand, Coney’s Italian Ice and Creamery in Tavares offers a tasty chili dog with toppings including sauerkraut, onions, relish, peppers, and cheese sauce.

3. Chicago-style

Traditional condiment rules go out the window in the Windy City. “Chicago-style” means an all-beef Vienna dog in a poppy seed bun and topped with neon green sweet relish, onions, tomato wedges, sport peppers with a kick, pickle spear, celery salt, and mustard—no ketchup! Why? Because Chicago says so. Find it at Great Chicago Fire Brewery and Tap Room in Leesburg.

4. Ballpark

Baseball, summertime, and hot dogs. That’s America, comrade. Watch the boys of summer accompanied by the joys of summer: the aroma and taste of a ballpark dog at the concession stand. A little mustard on the shirt only deepens the memories.

5. Bratwurst/Frankfurter

Here are more sausage subtleties to decipher, but both brats and ’furters are especially good when loaded with sauerkraut. Bavarian Haus in Mount Dora and Yalaha Bakery are among the restaurants serving these German delicacies.


One of our many office Pooches, “Cash”. Photo: Anthony Rao

…and hot dogs

Hottest dog breeds in Central Florida

Labrador retriever | Yorkshire terrier | German shepherd | Golden retriever | Maltese

Source: The 1 Dog Trainer Academy


Tatt’d up

You’re never too old to get inked.

Tattooist Mike Tasse claims there’s not one part of the human body he hasn’t tattooed, and he sees a growing number of senior citizens who want to get inked.

“Nothing surprises me anymore,” says Mike, of Joe Walker’s Space Age Ink Tattoo in Tavares. “If you can think it, we can ink it.” 

Roses and skulls are among the hot requests. “And religious tattoos, believe or not, are a real big thing, too.” 

“I had a gentleman in his late 70s who had me tattoo a guy mowing the lawn on top of his bald head, and it looked like his hair was being mowed. It was pretty funny,” he says. 

His oldest tattoo-seeking customer was a man nearly 100. 

“He came on a Harley-Davidson with training wheels and he wanted a tattoo for his bucket list. He didn’t even flinch,” Mike recalls. “Fortunately, his skin was still nice and taut. He had a tattoo written on his shoulder, so gravity works in that area. It wasn’t wrinkly or sagging.” 

Tattoo artist Bob Fulwider at House of Ink in Leesburg has seen an increase in older customers, and he believes a growing number of Villages residents are seeking tattoos because they desire to feel young. 

Families of three or four generations come in together. “It’s kind of like a bond for them,” Bob says. “There are a variety of reasons people get tattoos, and it can be to remember a time, remember a place, and to remember a person.”  

However, professing your love with a tattoo of the guy or gal you met six weeks ago is not always a good thing.

“In this industry, we see it as a bad omen. It’s bad juju,” Bob says. “Nine times out of 10, six months later you guys aren’t together anymore.”  

The most poignant tattoos are those in memory of blood relatives, he says, where people request a little of their loved one’s cremated ashes mixed in with the black ink. “It’s a very emotional thing. It’s more symbolism than anything else.” 

One customer’s brother who loved to fish recently passed away from brain cancer. “So we did a little fishing tattoo with a tad of the ashes.” 

The No. 1 question tattoo artists are always asked: “Does it hurt?” 

“I wouldn’t consider it painful. It’s more annoying, and there are some body parts where it hurts more than others because of different nerve endings,” Mike says. 

Bob equates the pain to a really bad sunburn—that burning, stinging sensation—or similar to a bad cat scratch. “It’s more irritating than it is painful,” he says. “Afterwards, it’s a little tender, a little sore, and like a skinned knee.”


Hot athletes 

Brady Singer 

Brady Singer has officially achieved royal status. In June, the Kansas City Royals selected the former Eustis High School pitching standout with the 18th pick of the 2018 Major League Baseball draft. This is the latest accomplishment in Brady’s stellar career. In 2017, he led the Florida Gators to the national championship at the College World Series, and recently he was named the 2018 National Player of the Year by Baseball America magazine. 

Clayton Sellars

This is no bull. As of early June, Leesburg High School graduate Clayton Sellars was ranked seventh out of 344 active bull riders in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s (PRCA) world standings. In 2017, Clayton, a sophomore bull rider for Western Texas College, won first place in several PRCA-sanctioned events, including the Mesquite ProRodeo in Texas, the Elk City Rodeo of Champions in Oklahoma, and the Citrus Stampede Rodeo in Florida. 

Danny Trevathan

In only his fourth season in the National Football League, linebacker Danny Trevathan reached the pinnacle of his career by helping the Denver Broncos defeat the Carolina Panthers 24-10 in Super Bowl 50. In that game, the former Leesburg High School star recorded eight tackles and recovered a fumble. Avid NFL fans can tune in this season and watch Danny play for the Chicago Bears, who signed him to a four-year, $28 million contract in 2016.

Shea Holbrook

In 2010, race car driver Shea Holbrook accelerated, steered, and sped her way to victory at the Long Beach Grand Prix, becoming only the third female in history to earn a first-place finish at the historic track. Since then, Shea, who was raised in Groveland, has climbed the racing ladder much like she zooms around the track—with lightning-like speed. She has spent the past eight years as a pro racer in the Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car division, which is sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America. Drivers in this division race Hondas, Volkswagens, and Mazdas. Essentially, they strip down a showroom car and transform it into a race car. She has also competed in the International Hot Rod Association Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series.


“Sharp Objects”

Hot television

“Sharp Objects”: This chilling miniseries now airing on HBO stars Amy Adams as a reporter investigating the murders of two girls.

“Disenchantment”: Woo-hoo! “The Simpsons” creator Matt Groening developed this Netflix animated series about an alcoholic medieval princess, her elf companion, and a “personal demon.” (Aug. 17)

“Jack Ryan”: Producer and star John Krasinski brings Tom Clancy’s CIA agent to Amazon Video. (Aug. 31)

“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs”: The unconventional Coen brothers created a Western anthology series with an all-star cast for Netflix.

“Maniac”: Get inside the heads of Jonah Hill and Emma Stone in this Netflix black comedy about two mental patients’ fantasy worlds.

“Titans”: The upcoming series based on DC Comics’ Teen Titans will air on DC Universe.

“Castle Rock”: This psychological thriller, based on the stories of Stephen King and created by J.J. Abrams, recently started airing on Hulu.

“Mayans MC”: The FX drama starring J.D. Pardo and Edward James Olmos is a spinoff of the popular “Sons of Anarchy.”

“Charmed”: The CW’s reboot of the old WB fantasy drama may have a tough time matching the witchy behavior of the original stars. (Oct. 14)

Hot cliffhangers: “The Good Place,” “Good Girls,” “Empire, “Gotham,” “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “NCIS: New Orleans,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (moving to NBC) and a slew of other shows will reveal the fates of their characters.