Authors and Autographs

Posted on 01 October 2016 by LeslieM

authorsBy Rachel Galvin

Although the Butler House’s book event on Sept. 25 was cut short by the morning downpour, authors had the chance to mingle with each other, and trade books and stories. The Woman’s Club and Deerfield Historical Society volunteers sold hot dogs and hamburgers, and tours of the Butler House were given.

Delores M. Walters had the chance to chat with some of those who had gathered about her book Gendered Resistance: Women, Slavery and the Legacy of Margaret Garner, which follows the life of Margaret Garner, a pre-Civil War slave who killed her 2-year-old daughter rather than having her subjected to slavery. Her story was turned into an opera and also a novel called Beloved by Toni Morrison, and later a film by the same name starring Oprah Winfrey.

M.C.V. Egan spent 20 years researching for her book Bridge of Deaths ( about a 1939 plane crash before Hitler invaded Poland. She has a personal connection to the story. Her grandfather was on that plane. Besides historical details, she obtained insight through a seemingly accurate psychic and the story is told from 2010 looking back at details through past-life regression. This was just one book she had available.

I wrote the book in 2011,” said Egan. “I have been writing since I was a kid. I am originally from Mexico City, Mexico and wrote to my friends from Mexico about the United States. I honed my letter writing skills [which later led to writing the book]. I also studied in France and wrote letters from there.”

Carol White showed off certificates of various awards she has received, as well as her three books of contemporary fiction.

Like the other mentioned authors, she also traveled from Delray Beach She sat with Alexandra Goodwin, who penned Exchange at the Boarder and another title. Both women are members of the National League of American Pen Women.

Deerfield Beach resident Andrew Jennings Dickerson was here for his third year. Besides his book Magnificent Questions, he is still looking for a producer for his Broadway musical

Lisa Eva Gold came all the way from Palm Beach Gardens with a diverse array of books, including one on a teenager aging out of foster care, which focuses on mentorship and the importance of healthy relationships, books about chronic fatigue and mental breakdown, and books about learning to play the piano.

She said of the event, “This is a wonderful approach to welcoming in the fall season in historical Deerfield Beach, and it brings together a collective diverse group of local Florida authors. ”

These are just a few of the authors at this event. There was also a used book sale and many people came inside the Kester Cottage to escape the rain and look at the historical items, or went into the Butler House for a tour.

Since it rained, the Historical Society is offering a chance for authors to get exposure by scheduling a time to be at the house during one of their Saturday Butler House tours, with two to three authors in each time slot. Look for those to be advertised before each event.

For more on the Butler House and its events, visit

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Posted on 29 September 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Sept. 13: Two people entered a Mobil gas station at 901 W. Sample Rd. and stole two 12 packs of beer.

Sept. 14: A woman reported her Honda Civic stolen from an apartment building at 761 Siesta Key.

Sept. 14: A woman reported her home at 927 SW 15 St. broken into and two computers and jewelry stolen.

Sept. 14: It was reported that 140 bottles of nail polish valued at $875 were stolen from Saloncentric at 1101 S. Powerline Rd.

Lighthouse Point

Aug. 25: A 2015 Hyundai Accent rental car was not returned to the business at 3400 N. Federal Hwy. on its due date. The loss was $15,000.

Aug. 25: A 2016 VW Jetta rental car was not returned to the business at 3400 N. Federal Hwy. on its due date. The loss was $15,000.

Aug. 23: Several vehicles were found on cinder blocks at a dealer at 5230 N. Federal Hwy. with wheels and rims missing. The total loss was $15,200.

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The Demise of the Packer Rattlers

Posted on 22 September 2016 by LeslieM

In last week’s paper, the “city” gave their side of the story on the issue of the McDougle Foundation being given the contract for football in the city over the longtime Packer Rattlers, saying that is “the end of the story.” However, at Tuesday’s commission meeting, it was referenced again (see Pg. 1 of The Observer, Sept. 22 issue) when the commission decided to vote to censure the mayor based on some things she said at the previous meeting when she had brought up the issue again on the agenda. Well, the mayor does have a response to this issue. She handed out 100 flyers at Tuesday’s commission meeting, she said, outlining the history of the issue as she sees it, as well as a response to the controversy surrounding it. Here is the flyer in its entirety. (This is Mayor Robb’s opinion on the issue).

The Demise of the Packer Rattlers

By Mayor Jean Robb

On March 24, Kara Petty, director of Parks and Recreation, presented a proposal from the McDougle Foundation to partner with the city to implement the Firstability youth sports program. This was similar to a proposal made to then Commissioner Ben Preston and rejected by him since the proposal outlined taking over the existing Packer Rattler program. When I asked the manager how the city got involved with McDougle Foundation, he said it was upon the proposal made by Commissioner Preston. Preston vigorously denies that allegation and points to the fact that it was never raised while he was a commissioner. Commissioner Preston told me that when the McDougles approached him, he was aware that they intended to absorb the Packer Rattles, and he knew that was not acceptable for the people in District 2 that he represented. So he told them he could not go along with what they proposed. Consequently, it never was brought before the commission while Preston as in office.

It was pointed out to the commission that the it would be saving $43,500 since it would no longer be providing funding for The Raiders or the Packer Rattlers. That should have raised a red flag as to the elimination of financial support in the future for the Packer Rattlers. Instead both the city manager and Commissioner Battle lied to the audience and to the commission claiming that such an arrangement would in no way affect the Packer Rattlers.

Then four of the commissioners voted to give the McDougle Foundation all of the fields in the city thereby leaving the Packer Rattlers with no place to practice or play.

Resolution 2016-061 presented to the commission and passed with the mayor dissenting claimed that the funding of $45,000 for the initial year of the contract would be utilized to jump start quality football and cheering programs and offset first year costs of equipment and uniforms. Was there ever a resolution passed by the commission claiming that all of the necessary expenses would be paid by the city? I think not.

Why then did the city expend $45,463.58 or public relations and equipment purchased for the Bison without the approval of the commission, who had been sold a bill of goods? Total cost with the $45,000 grant amounts to $90,463.58. Where is the savings for the city? I never got the total cost figures from the Parks and Recreation Department. They kept telling me there were no new expenses when I was asking for a total the city had spent on public relations and equipment from when the day the contract was signed.

I also asked who was collecting the registration fees that were being paid to join the Bison teams? No answer from them. Since the manager had told me that the money was coming out of the Aquatic’s budget, I had to get the Finance Director to run me a complete history of the monies paid out of that account. That was how I was able to ascertain at the very least the 45,463.58 in expenditures. But it would take a collection of all of the invoices paid by the city for all of the city expenditures for the Bison Team to determine the exact amount … And I still have not learned who collected the fees for the registration of the football players and the cheerleaders for the Bison Squad. How much did it amount to and where is it?

To add insult to injury, the staff made sure that anyone who the DPR [the Packer Rattlers] approached for a possible site were intimidated into saying no. The DPR finally ended up signing a contract with Zion Lutheran because they had become a charter school and they were not planning to field their own football team. After the first home Game, when it was obvious that the parking for the number of fans attending was inadequate, that’s when the mayor placed item 21 on Sept. 6 on the agenda begging for just one field for the Packer Rattlers to play their home games on. It was obvious that the commission was told not to respond or second the motion, which would have allowed the parents to speak. Those parents and children who had sat through the first two hours of the meeting were not to be heard, and the four commissioners did not care. The city retaliated by demanding a special events permit with the staff member telling them that without it, they would not be able to play football in Deerfield Beach.

This is the frustration I was faced with when I said the following: “______why don’t you ever support your constituents?” The blank is my taking the Lord’s name in vain. I apologize, but the forgiveness comes not from this commission but from a higher power. I think it is necessary to let the people know what the Packer Rattlers have had to endure but they were still able to enroll 276 football players and 100 cheerleaders. Does that sound like they are going away?

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Posted on 22 September 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Sept. 6: A Nissan Rogue was reported stolen from a driveway of a residence at 985 SW 15 St.

Sept. 6: Someone entered Citi Door and Window at 1208 Military Tr. and stole 25 to 40 sliding glass door frames valued at $1,000 each.

Sept. 6: Someone stole a 25 ft. boat from 1407 SW 1 Way.

Sept. 9: A man reported that his Honda Civic was stolen from 4354 NW 9 Ave.

Lighthouse Point

Aug. 20: The victim was shopping with friends and placed a purse in the shopping cart at a store located at 3700 N. Federal Hwy. A surveillance tape showed a male subject taking the purse and leaving the store. The purse contained several wallets, driver’s licenses, credit cards and two cell phones. The loss was $1,966.

Aug. 21: The victim went inside a gas station at 4900 N. Federal Hwy. to pay and left the keys in the ignition and the doors unlocked. The victim then saw the 2011 Hyundai driving away at a high rate of speed. The car was spotted a short time later and involved in an accident where it was totaled.

Aug. 22: The victim said he was eating at a local restaurant at 3150 N. Federal Hwy. and lost two credit cards, a driver’s license and a social security card. He said the items were not in his wallet and may have fallen out.

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Posted on 15 September 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Aug. 29: Someone reported that a truck at Valiant Power South at 1801 W. Sample Rd. was broken into and two battery chargers and copper wire was stolen.

Aug. 30: A woman reported that a Chevrolet Cavalier owned by her cousin was stolen from Stop and Go at 3774 NE 3 Ave.

Aug. 30: A man and a woman who were inside the Athletic Factory, at 2301 W. Sample Rd., reported their vehicles broken into. The man said his wallet was stolen; the woman said her purse was stolen.

Aug. 31: A man said his trailer parked at 731 SE 1 Way was broken into and $6,600 worth of landscaping equipment was stolen.

Lighthouse Point

Aug. 14: Two lion statues were missing from a front yard at 2616 NE 24 St. The loss was $1,600.

Aug. 15: The victim lost her wallet that contained credit cards, $30 cash, and a driver’s license. The victim believed it was one of two female subjects that had bumped into her and took the property while she was shopping at a store at 3780 N. Federal Hwy.

Aug. 15: The victim said someone broke into a soda machine at a park at 4521 NE 22 Ave. and damaged the coin slot. The damage was estimated at $500.

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Sick Puppies Comedy

Posted on 09 September 2016 by LeslieM

sickpuppies090816By Rachel Galvin

If you have ever been stricken with fear at the idea of speaking publicly in front of a crowd, or just being on stage period, then Improv is for you. Aside from Toastmasters, which is another excellent organization, doing Improv is a great way to get your feet wet in the world of performing, whether you are an actor or need to do a business presentation. Doing Improv is an opportunity to be free and explore a part of yourself you may not have even known you had inside you. Plus, it is a great chance to laugh and learn with many new friends.

Improv is also an excellent tool for those pursuing film or theater. Sometimes, a director will ask you to Improv a scene in a film, or even for an audition. Being prepared is always paramount and having one more thing to put on your resume is a plus.

If you are thinking of getting involved in Improv, there is a place to go just around the corner in Boca Raton. The company, which started in 2012, is called Sick Puppies Comedy. They offer five different levels of classes from beginner to expert, as well as stand up classes, sketch comedy, and more.

Our beginners Improv class is titled ‘Permission to play,”’ said one of the founders, Casey Casperson. “We do a lot of exercises that help you come out of our own head. Word association, movement, music and silliness are incorporated early to teach everyone that if one person does something weird, they look like an a**. If everyone does it, it’s art. So let’s make art together. We get into some scene work and, toward the end of the series, we start to dive into [Improv] games.”

He added, “The majority of students take Improv classes to overcome some sort of fear or shortcoming regarding presentations or public speaking,” he clarified. “The main benefit is that it provides you the confidence in yourself to know that you are enough. Everything you need to be the best version of you is right there, inside your mind. Improv teaches you to trust your instincts and helps you understand your point of view and, most importantly, the point of view of others.”

Casperson works primarily with Sick Puppies, but sometimes is asked to do a guest set with other casts. There are other troupes in South Florida. He also teaches companies how to improve themselves through Improv.

Improv lets me explore all of my emotions, premises, theories and ideas. I can be anyone that I want and say anything that I think that the character believes to be true,” he said. “Improv is always opening night and closing night. But the main thing that keeps me coming back for more is our cast. These are the best people on the planet. Improvisers are collaborators. We want to work together to make incredible art.”

Another founding member Aniela McGuiness agrees with that sentiment.

To see someone follow their dreams by creating a space and teaching others to follow their dreams is awe inspiring, and that is exactly what Casey Casperson did with Sick Puppies Comedy,” said McGuiness.

Sick Puppies also holds a lot of special events in which people can watch and interact. The troupe has a special event called “The Other World” show on Sept. 17 in which the cast develops an alternate parallel universe and creates a series of narratives that make you ask “If this is true, what else is true?” On Sept. 24, they are creating “The Play,” an Improvised play from start to finish based on one word suggestions. This is a way for those seasoned in Improv to practice and show off their stuff, and have a lot of fun with the audience in the process.

Improv is for everyone. It’s not about being funny because, if humans are acting honestly, they are naturally funny. Improv teaches you to be a better listener, a better friend, a better companion, a better soul. If everyone could be the best version of themselves and stop judging their thoughts, we would have an incredibly productive and funny world,” said Casperson.

Their next beginner’s Improv class is Sept. 21. Sick Puppies Comedy is located at Center Stage at 7200 W. Camino Real #330, in Boca Raton. For more information, visit

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Riding the waves: Tom Leeman talks about kiteboarding

Posted on 09 September 2016 by LeslieM

kiteboard090816By Rachel Galvin

If the wind is blowing, Tom Leeman is kiteboarding. He began back in 2002 when he saw a friend, who is a professional kiteboarder, braving the surf. He learned by trial and error, but he suggests learning from an expert.

Anyone who wants to learn how to kiteboard should take a lesson from a qualified instructor who is licensed and insured. That’s the safest way to get started. Kiteboarding is an extreme sport and there is a lot of inherent risk. The ocean can be very unforgiving. Sometimes, the waves are 20 ft. in the currents running 5 to 8 knots. It’s a dangerous place for the inexperienced,” said Leeman, adding, “It’s not too expensive [to get set up]. You’ll probably end up spending about $1500. You need a harness, a board and a couple kites and a bar. Most people start out with a 12 m kite.”

He added, “I was kitesurfing with my friend Jay in Hurricane Dennis and my kite went down into a huge wave that dragged me under. The winds were about 40 kn and it was a pretty hairy situation. When I got back, my friend Jay had broken both bones in his right leg. We had to rush him to the hospital so it was a pretty crazy day.”

Despite the dangers, Leeman likes nothing more than being out in the elements in the blue sea off South Florida shores. Depending on the wind, he may surf all the way up to Boynton.

Kitesurfing is an addictive sport if you’re an adrenaline junkie you’re going to love it, but if you’re afraid of the ocean and you’re afraid of sharks, and you’re afraid of big waves, you’re not going to like it. Kitesurfing immerses you in nature. You use the energy of the wind to propel you over the ocean. It’s like nothing else on earth. It is experiential. You have to experience it to understand it.”

When not kiteboarding, Leeman is teaching it at Delray Beach Kiteboarding. To get a lesson, give them a call at 561-703-5367 or find them on Facebook. They have teachers who are licensed and insured.

You’ll learn the proper way to kitesurf and all of the safety systems, including how to rescue yourself in case of emergencies,” he said.

When on land, Leeman also teaches JKA Karate, works on producing movies occasionally and works for BirthdayComp, which provides free birthday discounts and gifts from local businesses on people’s birthdays (

The local to Deerfield Island Water Sports might not have the gear needed for kiteboarding, but they have plenty of surfboards to get your feet wet out in the ocean. They are located at 1985 NE 2 St. in Deerfield Beach.

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Posted on 08 September 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Aug. 21: A man reported that his 2012 Dodge Caravan was stolen from 201 E. Sample Rd.

Aug. 24: A man reported that three floor polishing machines, each valued at $1,500, and two vacuums, valued at $1,000 each, were stolen from his van at 101 Lock Rd.

Aug. 25: A woman reported that two men stole her purse with a cell phone and social security card at 761 NE 43 Ct.

Aug. 25: A man reported that a woman stole his gym shorts and a $4,000 necklace at 1938 NE 6 St.

Sept. 5: A suspect cut down plants on a business’s property at 2651 NW 48 St.

Lighthouse Point

Aug. 11: A subject was observed placing a bike against a tree at the apartment complex at 2050 NE 39 St. The subject went inside a residence and $350 in currency and $30 in painkillers went missing. The loss was $380.

Aug. 12: Someone broke into an apartment at 2321 NE 48 St. and stole a computer monitor, $200 cash and two iPads. The loss was $460.

Aug. 12: The front window screen to an apartment at 1951 NE 39 St. was slightly open when the victim returned home. He then noticed the screen to the patio was open and the patio door was open. No entry was made.

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Posted on 01 September 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Aug. 15: A woman reported that while she was sleeping, someone broke into her home at 212 NW 53 St. and stole $5,500 worth of jewelry.

Aug. 15: A woman reported her home at 262 NW 54 St. was burglarized and three gold rings each valued at $500, a wallet and $25 in cash were stolen.

Aug. 16: A man said that another man hit him and his girlfriend and then stole his wallet with $522 in cash. The two men were involved in an altercation at 250 S. Ocean Dr. and both men had lumps on their heads. All three subjects gave different accounts of what took place.

Aug. 17: A home at 284 NE 39 Court was broken into through a rear door and three televisions were stolen.

Aug. 17: A man reported that his former roommate moved out and stole a $1,500 welding machine. The incident was reported at 1385 SW 29 Ave. The man accused of the theft was contacted and he denied taking the machine.

Aug. 28: A victim reported the bed liner of his truck was stolen at 2972 SW 11 Pl.

Aug. 28: Merchandise was taken from a store located at 3740 W. Hillsboro Blvd. As the subject fled without attempting to pay, his vehicle struck another parked vehicle outside.

Aug. 28: A subject took items from a store located at 3740 W. Hillsboro Blvd. by concealing them in her purse and clothing, and left without attempting to pay for the merchandise. The subject was detained outside the store by Publix Loss Prevention.

Lighthouse Point

Aug. 6: Two mountain bikes valued at $80 were stolen from the side of a building at 2500 NE 36 St.

Aug. 6: A loss prevention officer observed a female subject place items in a shopping cart and left the store at 3700 N. Federal Hwy. without paying. The merchandise was valued at $37.62. She was apprehended outside the store.

Aug. 10: The victim said someone stole a Donald Trump political support sign from his residence at 2547 NE 22 Ave. The loss was $20.

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Posted on 25 August 2016 by LeslieM

Deerfield Beach

Aug. 10: A woman was arrested and charged with larceny and petty theft. She took two items off a shelf at Marshalls at 3852 W. Hillsboro Blvd. and returned them to the customer service desk. She received a gift card valued at $90.08. The customer service representative continued to watch the woman as she reached the door of the store. She was stopped at the door and arrested. The woman also was in possession of heroin, and four crack cocaine pipes with cocaine in them.

Aug. 10: A woman was issued a Notice to Appear in Court after stealing $93.04 items from Walmart at 1101 S. Military Tr.

Aug. 10: A man was reported for stealing tools from Advance Auto Parts at 286 W. Hillsboro Blvd.

Aug. 10: It was reported that an attempt was made to break into a home at 2518 SW Natura Blvd.

Aug. 20: Three unknown subjects removed three large pallets of bundled cardboard at 1901 NW 49 Ct.

Aug. 20: A victim arrived at the register of a store and discovered that her wallet was missing at 4008 W. Hillsboro Blvd.

Aug. 21: An unknown person was driving a vehicle and collided with a tree and left the scene at 3440 SW 2 Ct.

Aug. 21: An unknown person shoplifted after taking several items from the store without paying for them at 3599 W. Hillsboro Blvd.

Aug. 22: A subject entered a residence at 750 Lock Rd. while the victim was in the shower. He pointed a gun at her and stole her purse. The victim fled out of the residence and the suspect fired one shot at her as she fled. This case is currently under investigation.

Lighthouse Point

July 22: The victim reported that he thought he heard something. When he went to investigate, he discovered the screen at the bottom of the jalousie window appeared to be cut at 2100 NE 42 Ct. No entry was made.

July 25: A person said he was the victim of identity theft at 2800 N. Federal Hwy. There were two withdrawals – one for $160 and the other for $900.

July 26: A business check in the amount of $5,630.13 was fraudulently cashed at a local bank at 3500 N. Federal Hwy.

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