Luigi Di Roma Tuscan Wine Dinner

Posted on 20 July 2018 by LeslieM

By Rachel Galvin

On July 9, Luigi Di Roma Ristorante & Lounge, located at 718 S. Federal Hwy., in Deerfield, had its very first wine dinner. Luciano Castiello, an official wine ambassador and educator for Banfi Wines, came all the way from Italy to talk about the wines. Alan Siegel, Key Account Manager for Republic National Distributing Company, also was in attendance.

As people tried course after course, each was paired with a different Banfi wine and, with wit and charm, Castiello talked a bit about the different types and about the company history. Among the courses were Zucchini Blossoms and fried calamari, paired with Maschio Rosé Prosecco. Next was the delicious charred octopus salad, atop arugula and cannellini beans [the best octopus this reporter has ever had]. It was paired with a crisp and refreshing San Angelo Pinot Grigio. It was followed by the primo piatto (first course), which was Fungi Misti Pappardelle, a combination of rich wild mushrooms with a delicious sauce served over Pappardelle pasta, paired with a Rosso di Montalcino. Then came the secondo piatto (second course, usually a meat course). Guests were served a gigantic braised lamb shank, which had been slow-cooked over roasted potatoes, carrots and fennel. [This reporter tried a delicious chicken marsala. It was a huge portion!]. The night was finished off with a flaky pear tart with the last wine, a Cum Laude.

Luigi Di Roma’s owner’s Al and Kristine Bova were actually visiting Italy and elsewhere in Europe when the event took place. Managing Partner Johnny Vicari pulled off a wonderful night. Bravo to the whole staff, including Executive Chef Josh Welch!

Luigi Di Roma has a full menu, large wine list and a full bar. They often have live entertainment. See their website for entertainment calendar. They are open Monday to Thursday, 4 to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 4 to 11 p.m. and Sunday from11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

They plan on having another wine dinner on Dec. 10. For more information, call 954-531-6151 or visit www.luigidiroma.com.

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7th Annual Boca Burger Battle

Posted on 20 July 2018 by LeslieM

By Rachel Galvin

Sanborn Square Park was packed for this year’s Boca Burger Battle on July 14. More people than ever found their way to vendor after vendor and stuffed themselves with taste after taste of delicious burgers, as well as craft beer, wine and other spirits. The night was made complete with well-placed mood lighting strung up high on the tall palm trees by Jan Van Der Baan (also of Birthday Comp.) and the musical stylings of the Gypsy Lights. They even had cornhole to play.

This is my first time attending,” said Peter Wein (of WEI Network.) “I am amazed at how many incredible burgers we have to choose from. Unfortunately, only one is going to get an award.”

Each of the chefs was battling it out to win, judged by a long line of judges. In the end, the Best Grill Master was Funky Buddha Brewery. 2nd place was Tucker Duke’s and 3rd, Cheffrey Eats. People’s Choice for Best Battle Burger went to ROK: BRGR for the 2nd year in a row.

Burton’s Grill & Bar served up a Mediterranean stuffed burger slider, with feta and herb alouette, grilled zucchini, tzadeki and charred tomato ketchup.

October will be our one year anniversary. This is our first time here,” said Stephanie Hammer, who marveled at how they had not slowed down the entire event. “Our Boca restaurant is the first in Florida… We are from New England.”

I love it. This is our first year. We are having an amazing time,” said Ting Shen, director of training of Batch Gastropub, which is located in the Delray Marketplace.

Barrel of Monks Brewery owner Kevin Abbott said, “This event just makes sense for us. It is a Boca event and we are a Boca brewery,” saying he works with most of the restaurants in attendance. “We have been here [in Boca] for 3 ½ years. We have Belgian style ales, tours, food and beer pairings … We like to educate people that beer is just as complex as wine.”

The Voss,’ who seem to be at every event, participated here for the first time, bringing their coconut tool and fresh honey, along with their bees.

It has been pretty good. The people are really friendly…” they said.

Flair for Fudge, which also seems to always be here yearly, created a fudge just for the event — Pecan BBQ Bourbon. But they have so many other flavors, including salted black truffle and Tropical Temptaton, made with coconut, pineapple, banana, and mango in dark chocolate. [This reporter really liked the chocolate peanut butter]. They also had samples of key lime pie and others…

We ship all over the US. We customize products for corporate, gifts for holidays, realtors, financial advisors, etc.,” said Hilary Saporta, who runs the company with Bernie Diaz. You can find out more and order at www.aflairforfudge.com.

We come every year. It has gotten bigger. Every year, there are more vendors. There are a lot more breweries,” said Natalie Batmasian, who attended with her husband, Jimmy.

This event may be over, but Russell Spadaccini, who runs the event, will have no time to rest. He is already gearing up for his next soiree, the Boca Wine & Food Festival, which will take place Nov. 10. Find out all the info., at www.bocaratonwineandfoodfestival.com.

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Costume World to move

Posted on 20 July 2018 by LeslieM

Sprouts coming in

By Rachel Galvin

You may have noticed a big sign on Costume World announcing a liquidation sale. They are closing their location on 950 S. Federal Hwy. in Deerfield Beach after 27 years due to what they said was a dramatic increase in rent. But, they will be moving to a new location, a newly renovated production facility in Pompano Beach. After July 22, Costume World will be located at 2313 NW 30 Pl., in Pompano Beach. But they are opting out of the retail end of the business to a more specialized costuming experience. Sprouts Farmers Market will be taking over their Deerfield Beach location. [No word on when the actual opening of Sprouts will be yet. See more about Sprouts below].

My headquarters has been in Deerfield Beach for such a long time, and while I’m disappointed that the new landlord has doubled the rent at our current home, forcing this move, I am extremely excited about creating a dynamic new home in an expansive state-of-the-art facility that will better serve our clients,” said Costume World Founder and CEO Marilynn Wick.

Did you know that behind the retail portion of Costume World, there is a huge inventory of costumes and accessories? This is where they pull from when theaters from all over the country look to them for wardrobe. They even have seamstresses on-hand to get the costumes ready for use. They have been in the business for 40 years and they house the biggest collection of Broadway costumes in the world. This aspect of the business will be moving to the new expanded location in Pompano. There, they will be providing a VIP costume experience for locals who want to create a “dazzling impression during the social season.”

We are thrilled to centralize our costume business,” said Wick, “It is going to be an amazing experience, including 30,000 sq. ft. of hanging costumes, a costume production area, a wig production area and VIP rooms, in addition to a rehearsal hall for The Wick Theatre productions.” [The Wick Theatre & Costume Museum is located 7901 N. Federal Hwy. in Boca Raton].

Our inventory will always be available to customers and event planners in our community. Our new home will have an impressive showroom where customers can consult with our expert costumers by appointment. The ‘packaged’ costume industry has been essentially taken over by Amazon, so we are adapting to highlight our unique strengths, including dramatic and unusual costumes and accessories,” said Wick.

The moving sale at Costume World’s current home on Federal Highway is in full swing, offering clearance prices on costumes, headpieces and accessories, including wigs, masks and costume lingerie.

This is a great chance for local designers and event professionals to get some fabulous costume pieces at incredible prices,” continued Wick, adding that the sale will end when the doors officially close on July 22. Find out more about Costume World at www.costumeworld.com.

About Sprouts Farmers Market

You may not have heard of Sprouts Farmers Market. They are headquartered in Arizona but operate more than 200 stores in 16 states. They already operate five stores in Florida. They are adding stores in Naples, Clearwater, Oviedo, Winter Park and Wellington, in addition to this Deerfield location.

Their market specializes in fresh, natural and organic products at reasonable prices. They not only have fresh produce, but also a deli with prepared entrees and side dishes, a butcher shop and fish market, as well as vitamins and supplements, and more. Visit www.about.sprouts.com for more information.

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Marlee’s Diner to close

Posted on 20 July 2018 by LeslieM

By Rachel Galvin

After 17 years, Marlee’s Diner & Bakery (located at 699 S. Federal Hwy. in Deerfield Beach) is set to close. The last day will be July 29.

The family-owned restaurant was originally opened by Matthew Mavromatis, who named it after his daughter, in 2001. In 2008, he sold the restaurant, but the family ended up retaking the locale in 2011. His mom, Helen, does the books and dad, Steve, helps on the register and does PR. His sister Emmy Louvaris, who worked as a teacher in Broward County, took a leave of absence six years ago to help out and she has been here ever since.

Louvaris said closing is bittersweet for the family. Although her parents are looking forward to retirement, and she is looking forward to a much-needed break, she understands the hole being closed will leave in the community.

“ ‘Devastated’ is the word I keep hearing from customers,” she said. “I posted it on Facebook and have 1100 views. People are calling each other, calling us. I am keeping the Facebook up through next year because we have a lot of snowbirds who will be coming back. I have gotten e-mails from Canada.”

She said she is going to be doing a documentary with video and pictures of customers through the years, which she will post on YouTube probably.

I am looking forward to being a family and not business partners,” she said.

Emmy hopes to focus more now on her passion — art. She has her paintings displayed all around the restaurant — pastels and chalk drawings mostly.

When the restaurant started closing at 3 p.m., she started doing art shows there and she also created and sold a calendar.

The waitresses are unsure where to go. They are currently putting out resumes, but they know they will never find a job like this.

Waitress Pamela Little said, “I have 32 years of memories, very good ones. I can’t imagine it being sold. I can’t digest it. I wake up in the middle of the night, [hoping to be] waking up out of this nightmare. You don’t find a crew and place to work like this.”

Deborah Carpenter, also a waitress, said, “I have been here around 34 years. I was here when it was Sambos, then Mike’s, then George’s, then Marlee’s. I am sick to my stomach. I could be a world traveler for all the people I have met. How nice the customers have been to me. I have met so many friends.”

She added, “I am scared. I have given my life here. I get up at 3 and am here by 4 in the morning. I have never missed work, even if I was sick.”

She said, “If customers don’t come in, I call them. There is a 91-year-old — her daughter called and said where is my mom going to go now? I have customers who come in who are in their 80s and 90s and I open crackers for them. I used to have a customer outside waiting for me at 4 a.m. He thought it was his job to put all the creamers out. He overslept and apologized for being late. He had a picture of me and him on his wall.”

She added, “[My daughter] used to sleep in the office. Guys used to put money for my daughter in the pay phone. She’d check the phone every day. They would leave a dollar. [She later worked here]. She is a teacher now at Boca Hammock. Everyone knows me and they ask about her”

She continued, “All of us have been here 15-20 years. I’ve been here the longest. It is too bad we couldn’t find someone to take over.”

The diner has been sold to an undisclosed property developer.

This place means a lot to me,” said a tearful Liz Weyhknecht. “All my friends are here. They’re my family. I lost my son to Cancer. He was only 8 years old. This was one of the 1st jobs I had after that. All of these people know him through me. All grieving parents just want someone to remember. This was one of the places I healed. They know when his birthday is and I get extra special hugs that day.”

She added, “Besides being a waitress, I also do baking here. I hope to find somewhere to do that. I am putting feelers out.”

Carol Collins recalled times when she called hospitals or 911 to track down an elderly customer if they didn’t come into the restaurant for a while, saying one customer had put her name down as a contact on the board at the hospital.

Servers don’t do that,” she said. “I have been here 18 years. I have customers that had babies who are now adults. The time the restaurant sold, everyone stayed. The customers stayed here for us.”

Louvaris said that when she knows where the waitresses are going next, she will post their new job location on Facebook so customers will know. She will be staying locally for awhile doing her art and her parents will be traveling to Greece, where they also have a home, and to Colorado, where her brother Matthew lives with his family.

Find Marlee’s on Facebook or visit www.marleesdiner.com.

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HCA hosts another successful hoops camp

Posted on 19 July 2018 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

For two solid weeks, the Highlands Christian Academy basketball camp attracted 40 campers to take part in not only learning how to play the sport but also learn life lessons.

I am always grateful and excited that we are able to offer basketball camp here at HCA,” said HCA Boys basketball coach and school athletic director Jim Good, who has worked the camp personally for 21 years. “It is by far our most successful athletic camp we do in the summer.”

Reg Cook, the school’s former AD and Boys Varsity basketball coach, started the camp in 1986 with 19 campers in attendance. The first week of the camp consisted of children in the 7th-12th grades, while the second week consisted of 2nd-6th graders. Both sessions attracted approximately 40 campers each.

I am extremely thankful for our coaches who do a tremendous job leading, working stations, sharing devotions and officiating games,” Good said.

This year’s staff included several of the HCA Basketball coaches: Luke Still (Boys JV), Josh Good (Boys JH), Jeff Sullivan (Boys 6th grade), John Wilson (Former Girls Varsity who is at Charlotte Christian now) and Kayla Lassen (HCA alumnus who is attending Liberty University).

Special guests, including Andrew Smith and Tomasz Gielo, would lead some drills in the morning. Smith graduated from HCA in 2011 and helped lead the Knights to back-to-back District Championships in his junior and senior years. The former first-team All-County selection played four years in the Big South at Liberty University and just finished up his third season playing overseas, including professional stints in Latvia, Netherlands, and just recently in Germany.

Tomasz was a teammate of Smith’s while at Liberty but transferred his senior year and finished playing his college ball at Mississippi. He has been playing professionally in Spain the last two years. Tomasz is originally from Poland and is representing his country this summer by playing for the Polish National team.

It was great having these two young men give back to these kids,” Good said. “They were given a 45-minute time slot of leading some offensively minded drills they have incorporated while playing in college or overseas. The campers had a tremendous amount of respect and ‘awe’ in having them part of our camp this summer.”

The typical morning included a devotion from one of the coaches as they shared a spiritual truth for the day. They then focused the entire group on warm-up runs, dribbling, ball-handling and stretching.

Each morning, the campers performed several speed and agility drills led by the coaches in a station format. The group was then divided up to work on individual skill and development with lay-ups, cone drills, and shooting.

Each day, a specific skill was broken down for the campers to focus on and, every day, the campers competed in a different trophy competition which included: one on one, two on two, free throws, and hot shots.

Lunch was off campus at Chick-Fil-A, Wendy’s, and CiCi’s Pizza and we are extremely grateful for our relationship with these organizations and the support they have for HCA Athletics,” Good said.

The afternoon consisted of full court five on five games. Hours for the camp were 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday and will be offered again next June.

Other camps coming up at HCA are softball, track and field, indoor soccer, golf and volleyball. For more information, visit the website at www.highlandsknights.org.

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Free movies at Filmed in Broward event this weekend

Posted on 13 July 2018 by JLusk

Want to see some free movies? Head on down to Savor Cinema in Ft. Lauderdale this weekend. On Saturday and Sunday they will have free movies, all of which have been filmed in Broward County. Below is the schedule. Find out more about the theater at www.fliff.com.

 

FILMED IN BROWARD 2018 – DAY 1

Saturday, July 14

10:30 – 10:54    The Pink Dog
11:00 – 11:08     The Nigun
11:10 – 11:24     Side Effects
11:30 – 11:58     Death & Life
12:15 – 1:24     Evils of a Foster Child
1:30 – 1:47      Young Blood: The Mass Shooting Generation Takes Action
2:00 – 2:05     The Journey
2:10 – 2:19     The Estate
2:25 – 2:27     Lightworker
2:30 – 2:39     Magic Schmuck
2:45 – 2:52     Karmic Collisions
3:00 – 3:55     Prohibition & The South Florida Connection        
4:10 – 5:31     TINY DANCERS
5:45 – 6:05     Tu Admirador Secreto
6:10 – 7:30     Opening Party

FILMED IN BROWARD 2018 – DAY 2

Sunday, July 15
1:00 – 1:08 Legacy Begins: Chapter One
1:10 – 1:14 Rojo Corazon
1:15 – 1:19 Pluto
1:20 – 1:24 Play
1:25 – 1:30 The Runner
1:35 – 1:45 Marcus
1:50 – 2:01 Secrets
2:05 – 2:17  Ghost in the Woods
2:30 – 4:00 MARRIAGE KILLER
4:10 – 4:34 Waking Up Dead
4:45 – 4:54 Flying Solo Around the World With Julie Yang
5:00 – 6:30 Closing Party

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DB Chamber event –Networking Morning

Posted on 06 July 2018 by JLusk

Join the Greater Deerfield Beach Chamber on July 10 for a Networking Morning, from 7:30 to 8:45 a.m. Held at State Farm (843 SE 8 St., in Deerfield Beach), this event is a great way to start your day. Bring business cards, learn more about the Chamber and promote your business while enjoying some coffee and pastries! Click here to register:https://deerfieldchamber.chambermaster.com/eventregistration/register/4543

 

 

 

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CRA Meeting Cancelled- July 10

Posted on 06 July 2018 by JLusk

You are hereby notified that the Community Redevelopment Agency meeting, scheduled to be held Tuesday, July 10 at 7 p.m. at the City Commission Chambers of the City Hall Complex, located at 150 NE 2 Ave., in Deerfield Beach has been canceled.

For additional information on the agenda items for the CRA meeting, please call 954-480-4262 or visit www.deerfield-beach.com.

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Junior Division team takes District 10 title

Posted on 05 July 2018 by LeslieM

By Gary Curreri

Host Deerfield Beach rallied from an early 5-0 deficit to pull out a 10-9 victory over Ft. Lauderdale and capture the District 10 Little League Junior Division Championship last week.

The Deerfield Beach Mets started their comeback with two runs in the bottom of the third and added four runs in the bottom of the fifth to take a 6-5 lead as Lorenzo Feliciano, Brock Buerosse, and Janelle Calvet all contributed in the big inning with RBIs.

After Deerfield added another run in the bottom of the fifth, Ft. Lauderdale rallied to take a 9-7 lead in the top of the six with four runs. Undaunted, the Mets pulled ahead for good, scoring three runs of their own and Feliciano broke the 9-9 deadlock with a fielder’s choice that scored Maxwell Thompson from third with what proved to be the winning run.

It’s my first championship and it is really cool,” said Deerfield Beach Little League Junior Division manager Jason Siracusa, who also took over this year as the league president. This is his third year as an All-Star manager.

It was like a six day a week, seven day a week ordeal between coaching a team, running the league, and also coaching T-Ball, I was all over the place.”

In the end, it was worth it,” Siracusa said. “We made a lot of changes to the league and the league is shaping up and ending the year with a championship is pretty special.”

Calvet, who went 3 for 4 at the plate and threw out a runner stealing second to get the first out in the top of the seventh (her cousin is Colin Calvet), plays on an all-girls travel baseball team in addition to the All-Stars. Buerosse had two hits and a walk for Deerfield Beach.

Keanu Siracusa went 4-1/3 innings and allowed five runs – just two earned – on two hits while striking out seven for the Mets. Gio Caffro and Neile Thomas came on in relief and closed the door on the Indians to win the championship.

Manager Siracusa said the Junior Division tournament featured teams from Deerfield Beach, Parkland, Coral Springs and Ft. Lauderdale. Deerfield Beach had 12 players on its roster but played the final with just nine players due to conflicts.

Deerfield Beach opened district play with a 1-0, extra-inning win over Ft. Lauderdale and then cruised past Coral Springs American, 12-2, before falling 7-4 to Ft. Lauderdale to set up the winner take all matchup last Friday night.

We had better depth in pitching,” Siracusa said. “It was really an across the board team effort.”

We had a team of players that have played together for several years and they all back each other up,” Siracusa added. “They have a want-to-win mentality. We dominated the league this year going 13-1 with the only loss to Ft. Lauderdale 13-1. We outscored our opponents, 179-24. Our pitching super dominated everyone. Obviously, it can’t get any better than this. From here on, the rest is icing on the cake.”

Deerfield Beach will next play in the Sectional competition on July 20 in Tallahassee.

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City forced to suspend Recycling Program

Posted on 03 July 2018 by JLusk

(See story in “The Observer” coming out July 5).

Due to the rising costs for recyclable processing and low global demand for materials, the city voted to not enter into an unreasonable contract with Waste Management. Over the past year, the city has been proactively searching for another disposal vendor in North Broward and Palm Beach counties. While we secured a lower rate for municipal solid waste, there were not any companies interested in the bid for recyclable processing of our materials. We will continue to explore both short-term and long-term improvements to our recycling alternatives because we believe in a sustainable, healthy environment.

The city will suspend all curbside residential recycling programs until further notice.

Effective Monday, July 9, 2018:

 All residential recycling carts will not be part of the collection process. Residents should place all materials in their city-issued brown garbage cart.

Single-stream recyclables will not be accepted at the City’s Drop-Off-Center (DOC) located at 401 SW 4 Street, Deerfield Beach. The DOC will continue to accept clean cardboard, metal, styrofoam and paper shredding.

Residents should continue to monitor the City’s website and social media for regular updates. The City appreciates the residents’ cooperation and understanding during this temporary suspension period.

For additional information, please call the Department of Sustainable Management at 954-480-4391 or check out the Recycling Frequently Asked Questions at www.dfb.city/recyclefaqs.

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