CHARITY GOLF TOURNAMENT The Panhandle Charitable Open will be held Oct. 1-2 at the Marcus Pointe Golf Club. The two-man, best-ball tournament has raised thousands of dollars for local charities thanks to the generous support of businesses and individuals like you. The success in recent years of the PCO enabled the board to donate over $140,000 to charities such as Child Guardians, Inc., Gulf Coast Kid’s House, Council on Aging of West Florida, ARC Gateway, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Independence for the Blind, American Cancer Society and Covenant Hospice. The primary charities this year will be Child Guardians, Inc., Council on Aging of West Florida, and Gulf Coast Kid’s House. Increasing the number of charities that participate highlights a goal of the PCO to continue to expand the impact and reach of their golf tournament. For more information, contact Doug Gooch at 293-7574 or visit pcogolf.org.
UNITED WAY’S EMERGING LEADERS SOCIETY TO HOST ANNUAL PARTY United Way of Escambia County donors ages 18-40 invite their peers to attend the Emerging Leaders Society Annual Party on Thursday, Aug. 26 at 5:30 p.m. The party is a chance for young philanthropists to meet, network and learn about United Way. The free event is sponsored by Blazzues Blues and Jazz Club, 200 S. Palafox St. All residents ages 18-40 are invited to attend. For more details or to RSVP, call Brandy Gottlieb at 444-7147 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. RSVPs appreciated by Aug. 23.
BRACE ANNOUNCES YOUTH EMERGENCY EXPO On Sept. 25, BRACE (Be Ready Alliance Coordinating for Emergencies) will host its first Youth Emergency Preparedness Expo — YEP! — at Bayview Park in Pensacola. The event is scheduled for 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and is free and open to the public. “BRACE knows that kids can save lives too, so this event will focus on educating kids from kindergarten through 12th grade in their roles before, during and after an emergency,” says Greg Strader, executive director of BRACE. “September is National Preparedness Month, so this will be a perfect opportunity to get kids and parents to prepare for emergencies together in an enjoyable and entertaining way.” Join BRACE for a day of fun activities where the whole family can learn and try new skills. Activities include a full-scale water rescue exercise by the Coast Guard; interactive games from police, fire and HAZMAT trainers; water safety demonstrations; rescue training skills appropriate for all ages; a student talent competition; pet activities and more. A special preschool section will teach parents and caregivers how to prepare for an emergency with infants and young children. Adults will also learn mitigation techniques as well as tips on preparing for an emergency when you have pets. A special area for domestic pets will also be available at this pet-friendly event. BRACE will be working with area schools and teachers in August and September to publicize the event and prepare students for the activities and contests. September is National Preparedness Month. Sponsorships and on-site vendor opportunities are now available. For more information on YEP!, contact Stephanie Plancich at 444-7038 or e-mail email@example.com. To learn more about BRACE and its program of work in Northwest Florida, visit bereadyalliance.org.
TASTE OF THE BEACH Island chefs are preparing to showcase signature dishes at the third annual Taste of the Beach, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 18-19 at the Gulfside Pavilion on Pensacola Beach. The Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce invites you to come to the Island to sample island fare, sip a glass of wine and listen to the tunes. The menu includes a Corvette show, free entertainment, People’s Choice awards ceremony, kids’ games and contests. For more information, call the Pensacola Beach Chamber at 932-1500 or log on to pensacolabeachchamber.com.
PENSACOLA SEAFOOD FESTIVAL SEEKS ARTS AND CRAFTS VENDORS Applications for arts and crafts vendors are still being accepted for the 33rd annual Pensacola Seafood Festival. The festival, held in historic Seville Square, attracts over 100,000 attendees every year and over 180 artists and craftsmen from around the nation participate. Quality conscious, creative artisans and craftsmen who are local to the area are encouraged to apply. Mediums include pottery, painting, jewelry, mixed media and much more. Applications may be obtained online at fiestaoffiveflags.org and must be submitted along with payment to the Fiesta of Five Flags office located at 2121 W. Intendencia St., Pensacola, FL 32502. The Pensacola Seafood Festival has been consecutively recognized as one of the top 20 festivals in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society. The festival will feature mouthwatering seafood, great entertainment for everyone in the family, exciting activities for children with the Babin House of Party, the Splash Dogs dock jumping competition, and the Energy Services of Pensacola Fiesta Seafood Grille. For additional information about the Pensacola Seafood Festival, contact the Fiesta of Five Flags office at 433-6512 or log on to fiestaoffiveflags.org.
AMERICAN RED CROSS DONATIONS Many people know the Red Cross for its disaster relief work or blood donations, but helping people be prepared for emergencies is another important part of our work. The Red Cross is practicing what it preaches on preparedness, as we are working to be better prepared to respond to disasters of all sizes — down the street here in Northwest Florida, across the country and around the world. With a severe hurricane season predicted, the Red Cross is making a fundraising push now, asking for contributions that support our readiness for the 70,000 disasters the Red Cross responds to every year, whether they are hurricanes that affect millions of people here or abroad, floods that affect thousands, or a house fire that drives one family from its home. Jerry Kindle, CEO of American Red Cross of Northwest Florida states that “Here in Northwest Florida, the Red Cross has responded to over 200 home fires and floods and two tropical storms in the last year, and opened cold weather shelters on two occasions.” While the news media has focused its attention over the past several months on the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and on the earthquake in Haiti, it’s important to know that the American Red Cross has responded to 29 significant disasters in the U.S. so far in 2010. These have included floods in Tennessee, North Dakota, the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, tornadoes in the South and Midwest, and major fires in communities across the country. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts between four to six major hurricanes this year. Major hurricanes are those Category 3, 4, and 5 storms that do the most damage — such as hurricanes Andrew, Katrina, Rita and Wilma — with winds in excess of 100 miles per hour. More than 35 million people live in regions vulnerable to Atlantic hurricanes, and many in the Gulf Coast region are already experiencing hardship as a result of the oil spill. While media and public attention comes when a hurricane makes landfall, what’s often missed are the preparations made by the Red Cross to be ready to respond well before the hurricane hits. For example, the Red Cross already has pre-positioned equipment and materials near areas that could be hit by hurricanes. In addition, the Red Cross frequently moves supplies and people closer to an area threatened by a hurricane so they can be ready to respond quickly. These preparations cost money. For example, as Hurricane Alex gathered strength in late June and threatened the Gulf Coast, the Red Cross deployed 133 people, 17 emergency response vehicles and kitchen equipment to south Texas and put other vehicles and crews on stand-by. And these disaster preparations are on top of the other floods, tornadoes and fires that the Red Cross is already responding to on a nearly daily basis. The Red Cross spends about $450 million a year responding to nearly 70,000 disasters across the country: floods, wildfires, tornadoes and home fires. No other non-governmental organization can respond to disasters on the size and scale of the Red Cross — but the Red Cross depends on donations from the American public to be ready. And we work hard to be excellent stewards of those donor dollars. That’s why the American Red Cross of Northwest Florida and other Red Cross chapters across the country are asking for help to fund our disaster relief, and we hope that people will respond. They can click, text or call to donate to the Red Cross to help people affected by disasters like hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, fires and earthquakes, as well as countless crises at home and around the world. People who want to make a contribution can visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RedCross to support American Red Cross Disaster Response, or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. We can also take donations at our local chapter by calling 1-800-773-7620, or you can visit the local website at yourredcross.org.
PENSACOLA FIVE FLAGS ROTARY BOARD OF DIRECTORS Pensacola Five Flags Rotary Club recently installed its 2010-2011 Board of Directors at the Club’s annual Change of Command Ceremony. Newly installed officers are Malcolm Ballinger, president; Mike Denkler, president-elect; Kathy Anthony, secretary/president-elect-elect; Drew Adams, treasurer; Charles Brewer, sergeant-at-arms, and John Hutchinson, immediate past-president. New board members are Hank Carlstrom, Billy Harrell, Mary Hoxeng and Jeff Rogers. Returning to complete their two-year terms are board members Marina Holley, Jeff Nall, Alan Nickelsen and Aden Sowell. Three Pensacola Five Flags Rotarians were also honored as Paul Harris Fellows for their commitment and service to Rotary International, the Club and the community. The new Paul Harris Fellows are Drew Adams, Mike Denkler and Kathy Anthony.