| February, 2020

Pioneer Days Parade Goes on Rain or Shine

Posted on 21 February 2020 by JLusk


The pouring rain didn’t stop dignitaries like Vice Mayor Todd Drosky from joining the parade last Saturday.

By Diane Emeott

The skies opened up an hour before the annual Pioneer Days Parade in Deerfield Beach with a downpour heavy enough for spectators to
scramble for umbrellas, and Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO) motorcycle deputies and those lining the streets with traffic cones to quickly don fluorescent green slickers.
As of 10 a.m. Parade time, the heavens let loose with another drenching.
“Ooh hoo, this is not pretty!” exclaimed one bystander.
Nevertheless, the much-anticipated Saturday morning, Feb. 15 parade went off without a hitch – albeit with fewer marching bands and viewers than usual along the parade route.
BSO motorcycle division started the parade, with Broward Sheriff Fire
Rescue (BSFR) fire trucks and an impressive array of emergency response vehicles, including a boat, behind.
Deerfield Beach High School NJROTC and Bucks Marching Band participated. “That is dedication!” pronounced one of their leaders.
The only other marching band came from Stranahan High School in Ft. Lauderdale. Dressed in orange band uniforms and pink rain gear over majorette’s costumes, the band began a diagonal dance/run thru the rain while holding tight their instruments and batons.
Parade Grand Marshall Willis Andrew McGahee III, a former NFL Running
Back, was covered in rainwear, as were local dignitaries.
Mayor Bill Ganz and County Commissioner Lamar Fisher, Vice Mayor Todd Drosky, and Commissioners Bernie Parness, Ben Preston and Michael Hudak each waved from their vehicles. State Representative Chip LaMarca made an appearance, as did those running for office in November, including Linda Thompson Gonzalez. (Both she and LaMarca are running for his Florida House District 93 seat.)
Former Broward Sheriff Scott Israel hadvehicles in the parade. Also
represented was Al Pollock, another of the 12 running for Sheriff in
November, including current Sheriff Gregory Tony, who was appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis when DeSantis took office.
The City of Deerfield Beach produced atleast three well-decorated floats – City Manager’s Office, Environmental Services Department and the Sustainable Management Department.
Five-year-old Louis had fun collecting candy and green, purple and gold beads from Mardi Gras (the theme of this year’s parade), while his mom Kathy sheltered them both with her umbrella. “Every year, I’m here! My son looks forward to it,” she said.
Sporting double umbrellas near the intersection of Hillsboro and Federal, Mr. & Mrs. Mawby brought golden Labrador dogs Emily and Daisy to take in the half-hour parade.
Cub Scouts Pack #119 were troopers, as was Preschool Director Jayne
Hafer from the Center For Active Aging, sitting solo on a float that, in better weather, is filled with kids. Senior Services Director Donna DeFronzo and staff walked in Mardi Gras makeup.
The Observer newspaper, which is still here online bringing news weekly, was represented in the parade, in the Observer car, by Vice President Jim
Lusk and driver Denise, visiting from Colorado. Editor Rachel Galvin walked the parade route (while this reporter took pictures.)
Look for more photos on the Observer Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Observer-Newspaper-118917374853101/

Stranahan High.

Wearing beads to fit Mardi Gras theme.

When it rains, dance!

Grand Marshal William McGahee, former NFL player.


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St. Ambrose Carnival–Feb. 27-March 1

Posted on 21 February 2020 by JLusk

Don’t miss this year’s carnvial at St. Ambrose. With proceeds benefiting the school, the event is filled with plenty to do, including carnvial rides, games and plenty of food. There also is always live entertainment from locals. Get more details at https://stambrosecarnival.com.



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Author Presentation & Scholarship Fundraiser Luncheon–Saturday, March 14

Posted on 20 February 2020 by JLusk

Join the American Association of University Women (AAUW) Pompano Beach Branch at their Annual Scholarship Event luncheon. Featured Author, Alyssa Maxwell, knew from an early age she wanted to be a novelist. Growing up in New England & traveling to Great Britain fueled a passion for history, while a love of puzzles drew her to the mystery genre.  She is the author of The Gilded Newport Mysteries and A Lady and Lady’s Maid Mysteries.  She and her husband reside in Florida, where she is a member of The Mystery Writers of American, Florida Chapter and the Florida Romance Writers. Event includes awesome Raffle items. Books available for purchase.  Luncheon Cost: $55. Lighthouse Point Yacht Club; 2701 NE 42 nd St, Lighthouse Point. Reservations Required. For information, call 312 316-6229 or email: pompanoscholar@yahoo.com. Guests Welcome.

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Another fatal collision with train

Posted on 20 February 2020 by JLusk

Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO) traffic homicide detectives are investigating Tuesday’s fatal crash in Pompano Beach involving a Brightline train and vehicle. 
At approximately 10:12 a.m. Feb. 18, BSO deputies and Pompano Beach Fire Rescue responded to a Brightline train versus a vehicle crash at the railroad crossing at Northeast 3rd Street and Dixie Highway in Pompano Beach. A 2003 Toyota Corolla Hatchback was traveling southbound on Dixie Highway when the driver turned left onto Northeast 3rd Street into the path of the Brightline train traveling southbound on the nearest west track, just east of Dixie Highway. 
The Corolla caught on fire following the impact. The Brightline train, with the vehicle attached, continued south coming to a final rest at Southwest 2nd Street and Dixie Highway, approximately 1500 feet south of the area of collision. 
The driver of the vehicle, 38-year-old Willie Louis Mitchell, was pronounced deceased on scene.
The traffic homicide investigation is ongoing.

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Annual Black Heritage Banquet–Feb. 22

Posted on 18 February 2020 by JLusk

The City of Deerfield Beach Parks & Recreation Department would like to invite you to join us for the Annual Black Heritage Banquet on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 7 p.m at the Leo J. Robb Gym, 445 SW 2 St. Come out for delicious food and live performance performed by after school theater program that is made up of 30 local 8- to 17 -year old children. See who is honored from the community this year and listen to a keybote speaker. Tickets are $25 at the door ($20 pre-sale). Tables are $180 for a table of 10. Buy your tickets at Central City Campus (401 SW 4 St.) on Tuesday’s or Thursdays from 2 to 4 p.m. or  at the Oveta McKeithen Recreational Complex. *It is recommended that guests wear African attire; however, it is not required*

For more information please contact the Community Events and Outreach Division at 954-480-4429.

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Afrique Ngozi Dance & Drum’ Celebrates Black History Month

Posted on 18 February 2020 by JLusk

Welcoming Drum Song. Dance Teacher Khinuu Nefer on West African Djembe (L) with Grecia Garrett on Cuban Conga.

By Diane Emeott
Atlanta-trained dancer Khinuu Nefer started her dance company “Afrique
Ngozi Dance & Drum, Inc.” five years ago “because there was a need for
“And it’s taken off!” enthused the dancer before her special
children’s program at the Downtown Boca Raton Library on Friday, Feb.
7, as part of Black History Month.
The dance teacher told more than 30 mesmerized children and their
parents gathered  in the Downtown Library’s Community Room that she
named her dance company “Afrique – for African” and “Ngozi, which
means Blessing.”
Nefer, who lives in Boynton Beach and has her business in Lake Worth,
off Lucerne Avenue, said she hosts workshops and presentations at the
library and city, as well as working with Palm Beach County School
District to create afterschool programs. She also does private performances for Children’s Art Symphony.
Nefer studied West African Dance and now has a mission to educate area
children and their families in the art of it.
She began her afternoon program with a “Funga Alafia” Welcome Song
from Liberia — performed on drums by Nefer on West African Djembe and
her colleague Grecia Garrett from Femin Afrika on Cuban Congas. A
Workshop to teach West African Dance Movements followed, using various
dances including a harvest dance called the “Ku Ku” to get kids
moving. A West African Folklore Story concluded the 45-minute program.
“The first rule is – arms up. The second movement is, side to side,”
she instructed eager-to-learn children encircled around her during the
first dance.
Nefer also taught children the names of the different items of West
African garb she was wearing, including an African wrap skirt called a
“Lappa,” meant to cover the waist and hips when dancing. “And we dance
barefoot,” she added.
For more information, visit www.afriquengozi.com; email
info@afriquengozi.com, or call 561-667-7391.
Story Central: “Stories from a Life of Service” with Ray Christian
took place on Feb. 8, the day after ‘Afrique Ngozi Dance & Drum.’
Every Wednesday evening in February, Boca’s Downtown Library has been
showing a point-of-view (POV) documentary recognizing Black History
Month. Upcoming scheduled at 7 p.m. are:
Feb. 19: Raising Bertie
Feb. 26: Presenting Princess Shaw
For more information on programs at the Downtown Library, located at 400 NW 2 Ave., in Boca Raton, call 561-393-7852.

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Bacchus Beckons kicks off Boca Bacchanal

Posted on 13 February 2020 by JLusk

By Rachel Galvin

Bacchus Beckons, held on Jan. 21 at Bloomingdale’s at the Town Center Mall at Boca Raton, signaled the kickoff to the popular culinary event Boca Bacchanal. Hosted by the Boca Raton Historical Society & Museum, this first event of many was a perfect time for everyone to mingle and try some delicious hors d’oeuvres courtesy of Sandy James Fine Food & Productions, as well as taste different wines from featured vitners. Over 150 were in attendance. Models showed off some of the fashions available there and the DJ played some pumping retro tunes.

Another purpose of this event was to announce this year’s pairing of these acclaimed vitners with award-winning chefs for the upcoming Vitner Dinners, which will be held on March 6 from 7 to 11 p.m. at five elegant homes and one new restaurant throughout Boca Raton. (See pairings and more info below).

Before the Vitner Dinners take place, there will be another event –Bubbles & Burgers.

Held on Feb. 20 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Boca Beach Club, 900 S. Ocean Blvd. in Boca Raton, this informal get together will include specialty burgers and sparking wines and champagne.

Hosted by Alina Residences. Tickets are $100. Parking is complimentary.  

The Boca Bacchanal events culminate with The Grand Tasting on March 7 from

7 to 10 p.m. in the Great Hall at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. There, guests can enjoy tantalizing tastes of specialties served up from over 25 local restaurants to be enjoyed with over 130 champagnes and wines from all over the world. There also will be a silent auction and plenty of pop ups to experience.  Thomas Arvid, America’s preeminent painter of wine, will also be at the Boca Bacchanal with a pop up art gallery, will be donating a piece of his art to the hundreds of items within the silent auction and will be doing a live painting demo. Don’t miss one of the hottest foodie events in the area! Tickets are $125.

For more information on all the events, visit https://www.bocabacchanal.com/

 Vitner and Chef Pairings

At the home of Barbara and Bobby Campbell, the dinner will feature Chef Tim Nickey, of Kapow! Noodle Bar in Boca Raton and West Palm Beach, with Tim Duncan, of Silver Oaks & Twomey Cellars, of Napa Valley, California.

Maria & Todd Roberti’s dinner will debut Chef Nathan Duensing, of Marsh House in Nashville, paired with Tim Duncan, of Silver Oak & Twomey Cellars, of Napa Valley, California.

 Joyce & Thom DeVita and Joni & Al Goldberg will feature Chef John Thomas, of Sassafras in West Palm Beach, and John Schulz, of Flora Springs Winery of Napa Valley, California.

Stacey Packer, Robin Deyo, Carrie Rubin and Donna Nero — all women for the first time– will host at the Packer home. For that dinner, Chef Amy Mehrtens, of Copper Vine in New Orleans, is paired with Aime Dunstan, of Cakebread Cellars, of Sonoma, California. 

LeAnn & Russell Berman’s dinner features Chefs Shanna & Brian O’Hea, of The Academe Brasserie at the Kennebunk Inn in Kennebunk, Maine, paired with Anthony Truchard, of Truchard Vineyards, of Napa Valley, California. One of the evenings special guests will be Thomas Arvid, the nation’s pre-eminent painter of wine.

The Rex Gryphon Restaurant Group will hold their Vintner Dinner at their unique Rex Baron Survivors Kitchen/VRex Lounge located at Town Center at Boca Raton. This avant-garde post-apocalyptic themed restaurant concept includes interactive, multi-sensory elements and a hi-tech VR escape lounge. The al fresco evening will be co-hosted by the company’s Culinary Director and acclaimed Chef Ralph P. Fernandez, and former N.Y. Giants running back, best-selling author, youth advocate, and philanthropist Rashad Jennings, who joined the Rex Gryphon (RG) Restaurant Group in December 2019. This dinner debuts Anita Correas of Montes Wines of Chile.




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Pat Anderson’s Plein Air Art Fundraiser Day at Bonnet House Museum & Gardens

Posted on 12 February 2020 by JLusk

Local artist Pat Anderson will have a special event on Tuesday, March 31 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Pat teaches people to paint en plein air. As she always says, “Learn to Paint what you see while you see it…tomorrow it will change.”  The class includes a tour of the historic Bonnet House, art supplies and use of her patented Leaf Bar Table/easel at lakeside Royal Palms. You can learn Fashion Illustration by studying the influence of ERTE sculptures & Hugh the Swan for future figure art.  Pat taught Fashion Illustration at the Fort Lauderdale Art Institute and elsewhere. Only pay at the class, which goes directly to the Bonnet House.  Additional money Donations will be accepted by volunteers at the class.   Reserve your space now at Pat@PatAndersonArtist.com. This is just one of the weekly classes Pat has. Find out more info. at www.PatAndersonArtist.com/classes.

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DFB launches “Your City, Your Buck”

Posted on 12 February 2020 by JLusk

The City of Deerfield Beach is inviting citizens to dive into Your City, Your Buck, a new survey launched in an effort to include the community in the annual budgeting process. The survey is the equivalent to a virtual public workshop and uses technology to elevate the level of civic engagement in the budget process. The surveys are anonymous, but it does ask for some demographic information.

Hardcopies of the survey and a drop box are currently available at the following locations:

· City Hall, 150 NE 2 Avenue

· Oveta McKeithen Recreational Complex, 445 SW 2 Street

· Highlands Community Center, 511 NE 44 Street

· Hillsboro Community Center, 50 Hillsboro Technology Drive

· Constitution Park, 2841 W. Hillsboro Blvd.

In addition, computers with internet access are available at the Hillsboro Community Center Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Surveys are available online and at the facilities in multiple languages to include: Portuguese, French, Creole, and Spanish. The surveys will be available for the month of February.

City staff is just starting to shape the 2021 Fiscal Year budget, which will run from Oct. 1, 2020 to Sept. 30, 2021. The survey results will be presented to the City Commission at a future visioning session. If you would like to provide input, please complete the survey at www.deerfield-beach.com/budgetsurvey.

For additional information please contact Office of Budget & Performance via email at dfbbudget@deerfield-beach.com.

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Retired NFL Star Named 2020 Pioneer Days Parade Grand Marshal

Posted on 12 February 2020 by JLusk


The Deerfield Beach Parks and Recreation Department is excited to announce that retired NFL Running Back Willis McGahee will be this year’s Pioneer Days Parade Grand Marshal. The Pioneer Days Parade will happen on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 10 a.m.

Willis Andrew McGahee III is a former NFL Running Back and played college football for the University of Miami, where he was recognized as an All-American and was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the 2003 NFL Draft. Willis was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and was a member of the 2001 BCS National Championship team. In addition to his time with the Bills, McGahee played for the Baltimore Ravens, Denver Broncos, and Cleveland Browns and was a two-time Pro Bowler.

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