| January, 2011

Letters to the Editor

Posted on 20 January 2011 by LeslieM

RE: Hillsboro Pines Golf Club at P & Z

Dear Editor:

I feel that Mr. Chester’s Letter to the Editor [Jan. 13 Observer] has misleading statements that need to be addressed.  There have been three golf course changes brought to the city in the last year.  This is the only one that had a crowd that exceeded the legal limit the room will hold.  All meeting rooms, restaurants, etc. have signs denoting the maximum number of people allowed by the fire marshal.  It is absurd to blame the city for not anticipating the crowds that appeared.  Where were these Good Samaritan people when the other golf courses came up for changes?  They were not interested.  Why should an impartial hearing be turned into mob rule?  Most of the people who showed up never read the plans.  They have been filled with misinformation and rumors that have been spread by those who oppose the changes.  The golf course is not seeking a land-use change.  They want to improve their property, which they feel they are entitled to.  The county has, in the other two golf course proposals, turned them down because they would have reduced open land recreational space.  This golf course wants to stay a golf course.  The golf course, whether they succeed or not, should be given a fair hearing by the city’s committees and the commission. That’s the American way.

Bernard Parness

Deerfield Beach

Dear Editor:

Cancellation of the hearing into proposed changes to the Hillsboro Golf course at Century Village East without naming a specific replacement date is tantamount to a denial of justice.

The promoter had failed, up to now, to do what he calls “community outreach,” as evidenced by the massive turnout at the originally scheduled meeting of last week [Jan. 6]. For him to request an indefinite postponement, only smacks of an obvious attempt to create a delay in the hearing process, perhaps to a time when at least half of the Century Village population, those taxpayers you call Snowbirds, will have departed for the summer season, not to return until October or November, and hopefully, not to a “fait accompli.”

There is a serious issue of “good faith” involved. The promoter’s drawing was dated 2008, so it is not new. There was much discussion about this project, without the public being given details in 2010.  Now, we are at 2011, and the promoter requires additional time?

I would ask that in order to ensure that the vast majority of Century Village co-owners will have the opportunity to appear at the Planning and Zoning Board hearing on this item, that it be scheduled for no later than March 1, 2011 at a convenient time and place.

Should the promoter object, I would ask that no hearing on this matter be held before Dec. 1, 2011  to allow a full and frank discussion of all the issues involved — which would lead to a fair and just conclusion.

Sidney Margles

Deerfield Beach

Dear Residents of Deerfield Beach:

When you elected me in March of 2009 as your District 1Commissioner, I promised three things:  1.) That I would be fiscally responsible;  2.) That I would listen to my constituents and weigh all comments, knowledge, ideas, and yes, even emotions before making a decision;  3.) I would foremost and always protect the integrity of District 1. My record will show that not only have I lived up to my campaign promises, but have exceeded many expectations.

I believe, as every resident, that the jewel of Deerfield is our beautiful “Blue Wave” beach.  I live just two blocks from the beach and walk my dog, Oscar, every morning and feel so proud that I can be a part of the decision to keep our beach pristine, welcoming, and safe. Along with my fellow commissioners, I have voted to renovate the building at the entrance to the Pier — which will also be the city’s first LEED-certified facility. We purchased new beachfront benches, picnic tables and garbage cans, obtained county approval for the installation of two additional A1A pedestrian crosswalks across Hillsboro Boulevard, and approved the beautification of Ocean Way near SE 10 Street.

During my tenure, the commission also partnered with Hillsboro Beach to fund and approve a beach re-nourishment project and we are working diligently with the environmental agencies to adequately protect the turtle nesting.  I have been the commission liaison to the Island Partnership, a group of business men and women committed to improving the business climate around the S-curve by bringing more corporate-sponsored events to the beach. As a resident, as well as a commissioner, I am a member to the newly formed Island Homeowners Association with a mission to continue to improve the residential neighborhood bordering the beach.

When the city’s new management team was put into place, one of the goals was to reinvigorate the City’s Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) in an effort to utilize available outside funding sources for continued redevelopment of the designated CRA area.  Since so many of the projects in the original plan have come to fruition, the missing link in the process is to develop a new 5-year plan.  Therefore, the commission and staff have set 2 very important visioning meetings for community input.

Let me make it very clear that as your Beach Area Representative, neither the Mayor, my fellow commissioners, nor myself have any hidden agendas or preconceived ideas of the future of the main beach parking lot or any other areas within the CRA boundaries.

We welcome your constructive input and encourage you to attend the visioning meetings: The first being held TONIGHT, Thursday, Jan. 20, 6 p.m., at Royal Fiesta Caterers and the second meeting, Thursday, Feb. 3, 6 p.m., at the Community Presbyterian Church.

Together we will build an even better Deerfield Beach.

In Your Service,

Vice Mayor Joe Miller

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Crime Watch

Posted on 20 January 2011 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Jan. 11 Tavaris Roberson was arrested on 44 St. for attempted sexual battery and kidnapping.

Jan. 15 Two electric Zip scooters were stolen from an RV off NE 48 St.

Jan. 15 Multiple suspects were arrested for multiple air conditioning unit burglaries in Deerfield. Henri Appolon, Mixon Juste, Michael McCord, and Sonny Hilaire are facing various grand theft charges.

Jan. 16 A victim parked at Goodwill on Federal Hwy. and returned to find 5 cell phones and an iPod stolen from the trunk of her car.

Jan. 16 Unknown thieves stole six Shimano TLD 30 Reel and Star rods from a boat at Marina One. Each worth $700, for a total of $4200.

Jan. 16 Village of Key Biscayne police officer Dufrene rear-ended two cars on her way home from work in her police car. Fire Rescue responded but no one transported to hospital. Key Biscayne police responded.

Lighthouse Point

Jan. 5 A $5200 Rolex watch was stolen from a home on NE 50 St.

Jan. 5 A victim at the Post Office on Sample Rd. had her purse with over $2500 in cash other personal items in side.

Jan. 7 A car parked at Gateway Plaza had a purse stolen from it

Jan. 7 A victim had her credit card used in Lighthouse Point after a theft in December.

Jan. 8 Police responded to what sounded like 4 to 5 gunshots and found large aerial fireworks left in the street on NE 34 St. Most of the aerial fireworks had been detonated except one. The Broward Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad was called in and handled the material safely for disposal.

Jan. 11 Thieves stole a bait pen with live bait was stolen from a boat behind a home on NE 46 St.

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Deerfield increases annual parking pass fee

Posted on 18 January 2011 by LeslieM

At the Jan. 11, 2011 City Commission meeting, the Commission approved increasing the fee for the annual parking pass to $100, effective at 8 AM on Friday, January 14, 2011.

The City of Deerfield Beach offers residents the opportunity to purchase an annual parking permit which allows parking in municipal parking lots.

Passes are available at the first-floor customer service counter at City Hall, Monday-Friday, 8 am – 4 pm. City Hall is located at 150 NE 2nd Avenue.

To be eligible to purchase a parking pass, a resident must show a utility bill (electric, water, phone), OR a voter registration card AND their vehicle registration. All documents must show a Deerfield Beach address. Parking passes are $100 each, and are valid through December 31 of the calendar year in which they are purchased.

For questions, call 954-480-4229.

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Pompano Nautical Flea Market coming soon!

Posted on 18 January 2011 by LeslieM

If you enjoy boating, fishing, diving or anything nautical then the City of Pompano Beach Nautical Flea Market is for you! Hundreds of venders with huge bargains for boating and diving gear, nautical clothing, marine surplus items, anchors, mooring products, nautical arts and crafts, food and much more will fill Community Park on Saturday, January 29th and Sunday, January 30th for the 20th Annual Nautical Flea Market!

The City of Pompano Beach and the City of Lighthouse Point are teaming up to host the popular Nautical Flea Market – bigger and better than ever! The Nautical Flea Market will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday, January 29th and from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 30th.

The popular band The World Famous Low Tides will be performing on Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

The cost to attend the Nautical Flea Market is only $5 per day, children 12 and under is free. Free parking is available.

Come to Pompano Beach for two days of fun, food, music and fantastic bargains! Don’t miss these once in-a-lifetime deals!

Vendor applications are still being accepted.

For more information call 954-786-4111 or visit www.nauticalfleamarket.com.

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South Florida under tornado watch

Posted on 17 January 2011 by LeslieM

South Florida from Palm Beach to the Keys is currently under a tornado watch as weather conditions deteriorate across the region. This is not the day to be in the water as water spouts and rip currents are highly likely.  A slight risk of tornadoes will be present over much of South Florida late this morning through the afternoon, primarily from the Cape Sable area northward through the Southeast Florida metro areas, with lesser chances over the western half of the peninsula.

Light to moderate rain will continue to spread north and affect all of South Florida through the midday and early afternoon hours. Clusters of heavy showers and a few thunderstorms will also move northeast and affect most of Miami-Dade County through noon, then Broward and Palm Beach counties between noon and 2 pm. These showers and storms will also spread over the near shore Atlantic waters and Biscayne Bay through 2 pm. The main threat with this activity will be lightning strikes, along with wind gusts of 30 to 40 mph in the stronger storms. Persons involved in outdoor activities today should be on the lookout for rapidly deteriorating conditions as the showers and thunderstorms approach from the southwest, and be ready to take shelter from the lightning strikes.

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Posted on 13 January 2011 by LeslieM

Relay For Life Captain Meeting

Thursday, Jan. 13, 6:15 p.m.
Dixon Ahl Hall
2220 NE 38 St., Lighthouse Point, FL 33064
To register and for those registered. All Team Captain meetings held third Thursday of the month. 954-427-2885.

Florida Trail Association meeting

Thursday, Jan. 13, 7:30 p.m.
Fern Forest Nature Center
201 Lyons Rd. S., Coconut Creek, FL 33063
Florida Trail Association helps maintain and promote Florida National Scenic Trail, provides opportunity for hiking and camping in Florida. 954-609-4727 or kayferrara@

Prime Timers

Friday, Jan. 14 and Saturday, Jan. 15
Community Presbyterian Church
1920 SE 4 St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
Group heads to Naples where they will board the Murder Mystery Dinner Train and travel to Ft. Myers for an overnight. 954-427-0222.

Boca Raton Green Market

Saturday, Jan. 15, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Royal Palm Plaza
302 South Federal Highway, Boca Raton, FL 33432
561-239-1536 or www.cmboca.org.

Pompano GreenMarket

Saturday, Jan. 15, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Atlantic Blvd. & Dixie Hwy.
Pompano Beach, FL 33060

Paws on Your Heart -Walk for the Animals

Saturday, Jan. 15, 9 a.m. registration, 10:30: 1.25-mile walk
Quiet Waters Park
401 S. Powerline Rd., Deerfield Beach, FL 33442
Benefits Florida Humane Society. Well-behaved, leashed pets welcome. LIVE entertainment, pet vendors, silent auction items/raffles and more! Single registration: $25; family registration: $40. $1.50 park entrance fee. 954-540-1798 or flhumaneteam@aol.com.

Deerfield Beach Green Market

Sunday, Jan. 16, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Sullivan Park
1724 Riverview Rd., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441

Pancake Breakfast

Sunday, Jan. 16, 9:30 a.m.
(following 8:30 a.m. service, before 10:30 a.m. service)
Community Presbyterian Church
1920 SE 4 St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
FREE pancakes, scram-bled eggs, bacon, sausage, orange juice and  coffee. 954-427-0222 or  www.communitych.org.

Music in the park series: “Motown Magic”

Sunday, Jan.16, 7 p.m.
Mizner Park Amphitheater
590 Plaza Real, Boca Raton, FL 33432
Music of ‘50s, ‘60s, ‘70s. FREE. 561-393-7827.

Toastmasters International

Monday, Jan. 17, 7 to 8 p.m.
Deerfield Beach Chamber of Commerce
1601 E. Hillsboro Blvd.
Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
954-803-2122 or visit www.toastmasters.org.

Taste of LHP

Tuesday, Jan. 18, 6 p.m.
LHP Yacht Club
2701 NE 42 St., Lighthouse Point, FL 33064
$50. 954-942-7244. www.lhpchamber.com

Veterans: Need help with disability claims?

Wednesday, Jan. 19 (Every Wednesday), 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
NE Focal Point Senior Center, Room 225-A
227 NW 2 St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
Disabled American Veteran Volunteer Service Officer available. Call for appointment: 954-708-9057.

Democratic Women’s Club of Northeast Broward meets

Wednesday, Jan.19, 6:30 p.m.
Emma Lou Olson Civic Center
1801 NE 6 St., Pompano Beach, FL 33060
Program: “What the Political Changes in Tallahassee Mean to Women.” Discussion of possibility of losing women’s reproductive rights (This month is the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade). Refreshments served. FREE, open to public. 954-942-8711.

History at High Noon

Wednesday, Jan. 19, noon to 1 p.m.
Old School Museum
232 NE 2 St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33441
Topic: “Streets of Honor: How they got their names.” Save the date: Jan. 20 is History at Sundown with Susan Gillis talking about Boca Raton during WWII. 954-429-0378.

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Brothers and sisters

Posted on 13 January 2011 by LeslieM

I have two wonderful brothers, but they live far away. I am so thankful that we talk to each other on the phone each and every day. But I wonder what it would be like if we didn’t talk for a week, a month or a year … or, worse yet, for many years.

Well, that’s exactly what we find in the Torah. Jacob and Esau have not seen nor spoken to each other for many years. Oh, and let me remind you that when they parted company years before, one threatened to kill the other.

I am the baby in my family. My brothers and I are as different as night and day.

Then again, as different as we are, there are parts of us that are so similar, we may as well have been twins. I am blessed that even if my brothers get angry at me, it does not lead to one of them wanting to kill me … at least, not that I know of.

As the baby brother, I used to hate all the hand-me-down clothes. I used to hate trying to live up to my brothers’ reputations. Year after year, on the first day of school, my new teachers would tell me how thrilled they were to have another Ezring in their class. They would tell me how brilliant, how helpful, how studious my brothers were. Oy, were they in for a disappointment.

For years, I tried to be like my brothers and then, thank G-d, the day came when I realized that I am not them. I am me! (at least, I think I’m me).

By the time my brothers left for college, they were so dear to me that I cried. I was alone. Most of you have experienced being alone. There are times that it seems like a huge blessing, but there are also times when it feels like a curse.

Sometimes, when I am alone, my brain starts to go around in circles. I think too much. Sometimes I even get into arguments with myself, which brings us to Jacob and his famous wrestling match with an angel. But, if you look at the wording carefully, you’ll find that Jacob was alone.

Well, if he was alone, who exactly is he wrestling with? It says that he wrestled until daybreak so, perhaps, he was having one of those nights where something was weighing heavily on his mind and an internal battle ensued.

So, how does he hurt his hip? Okay, that’s a fair question. Of course, I have had times that I have thrown my hip or my back out of whack from all the tossing and turning I do at night.

Then again, there is a wonderful idiom we have had for many years now in which we refer to someone who is trying to fit in with the current fads as being “hip”.

While someone else has taken credit for the lyrics, it wouldn’t surprise me if, upon waking up from his dream, Jacob was the first to come up with the song, “Oh the hip bones connected to the thigh bone … the thigh bones connected to the knee bone … Oh, didn’t it rain.”

Jacob limps and realizes how very important each and every bone is. He sees how one relies on the other for its next step. And then, in the midst of the reading, we find that Jacob goes back to retrieve some small earthenware jugs. I suspect that those little jugs were fragile and it would not take much for one of them to break. The same is true of our relationships with others. Just as one needs to handle a small earthenware jug with care, one must also remember to handle their brothers and sisters with tender loving care.

Shalom My Friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is a Hospice Chaplain and Member of the National Association of Jewish Chaplains. He also provides Professional Pastoral Care Services to a number of health centers in Broward County.

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The cultural impact of True Grit

Posted on 13 January 2011 by LeslieM

By Dave Montalbano

He has not made a movie in 35 years, but the ghost of John Wayne still roams the celluloid countryside. With the release of the Coen Brothers True Grit, John Wayne’s original classic has been given much airtime on cable stations. Note that I wrote “John Wayne’s True Grit,” not “Joel and Ethan Coen Brother’s True Grit;” for this foreshadows the philosophical differences between these two fine motion pictures, which tell the same story but were filmed 40 years apart.

Both films follow the novel written by Charles Portis.

In the new film, 14-year-old Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfield) wants to avenge the murder of her father by the notorious Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin). Mattie recruits Reuben “Rooster” Cogburn (Jeff Bridges), a double tough, one-eyed marshal. The two are joined by Le Beouf (Matt Damon), a cocksure Texas Ranger who antagonizes the Marshal.

Cogburn is Bridges’ best performance in recent weeks and Matt Damon creates the correct balance between naiveté and arrogance. This is Steinfeld’s film from beginning to end. A stoic character throughout, her vulnerable time is a special moment.

As literature, True Grit ranks with To Kill a Mockingbird in terms of presenting a young woman’s rite of passage. Both films open and close with Ross’s perspective. The fundamental difference between these two is that the Coen Brother’s vision is dark and pessimistic, while John Wayne’s vision is more life-affirming.

There are numerous reminders of death in the new True Grit with plenty of corpses strewn about the scenery. Both films end at the grave of a dearly departed character; the tone is somber for the Coen Brother’s interpretation. The John Wayne version shows the value of postponing death and riding beyond the sunset.

The new True Grit is one of the best things on the big screen today and the public has rewarded this film with consistent Box Office revenue. With the absence of Attention Deficient Disorder editing, the shootouts and the showdowns have more emotional clarity.

Like Jazz, Blues and musical theater, Westerns are a great American cultural art form. While the character archetypes are the prodigies of Homer and Virgil’s ancestors, the landscapes and mountain vistas capture the beauty of our nation’s natural bounty. Filmmakers should take heed of True Grit’s success. There is a need in our society today for big screen story telling like this.

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Publisher’s Perspective

Posted on 13 January 2011 by LeslieM

It is amazing to observe the reaction of certain liberal politicians and editorial writers to the Arizona shooting events.  As they try to find a way to blame this event on some right-wing boogy man, they ignore the real culprit, which is illegal drug use running rampant in this country.  Jared Loughner has been described by his 10th grade high school friends as a “sweet and caring” young man who was a great saxophone player.  It was only after he started experimenting with drugs in the 11th grade, that his personality changed to “weird” and led eventually to this tragedy.

Bottom line: It wasn’t politics either from the right or left that caused this event, it was illegal drug use.  Those who want to blame it on politics need to take another look—very possibly in the mirror.

David Eller

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Letter to the Editor

Posted on 13 January 2011 by LeslieM

P & Z canceling agenda item on CVE golf course — called “shameful”

Dear Editor:

Regardless of the merits — or lack thereof — of the proposal to put a driving range/restaurant/bar on the back nine of the golf course at CVE, the decision to cancel an agenda item scheduled for a public hearing because TOO many concerned citizens show up is shameful.

Did the City think that there wouldn’t be a massive turnout once the CVE community learned what was to be discussed?

If our elected officials and their appointed boards can develop a Comprehensive Land Use Plan, they should be able to make a plan for handling the crowd that shows up when they try to alter it.

I wonder how the developers would feel if they showed up at the rescheduled meeting and were told it was too crowded to allow them in — but the meeting would go on anyway.

Amendment 4 may have been defeated — but the right of citizens to oppose development, literally in their back yard, will never be — unless elected officials care to turn PUBLIC meetings into PRIVATE ones by ‘clearing the room.’

Jeff Chester

Deerfield Beach

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