• UpcomingEvents

    Ribbon Cuttings:

    Tues., Dec. 19, 5:30 p.m., Autos for the Needy, 752 Tamiami Trail, PC.

    Thurs., Dec. 21, 5:30 p.m., Conserva Irrigation of SWFL, 1897 Manzana Ave., PG.


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    Business OnLine – November 20, 2017

    November 20, 2017

    From the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce

    Accredited, US Chamber of Commerce, **** Rating

    Serving all of Charlotte County for more than 92 years
    November 20, 2017

    Upcoming Chamber Events:

    Sat., Dec. 9, 39th Annual Christmas Parade.  We step off at noon from Charlotte Performing Arts Center, north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  Judges’ stand at Centennial Bank.

    Wed., Dec. 13, Networking at Noon, Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, 75 Taylor St., Punta Gorda

    Thurs., Dec. 14, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, River Commons, 2305 Aaron Street, PC

    Wed., Dec 20, 7:15 to 8:30 a.m., Third Wednesday Coffee, Sponsor: Charlotte Sun.  Program:  Christmas Parade

    General Information

    Help us celebrate the holiday season at the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce’s 39th Annual Christmas Parade on Saturday, December 9.   Our theme this year is Holiday Happiness.  The parade will step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center 701 Carmalita Street in Punta Gorda, travel up Taylor Road to the Event Center parking lot for disbanding.  The Judging area is in front of Centennial Bank.  Print and return the Parade Flier 2017 – Holiday Happiness  and sign up your business, club, or non-profit group or pay and register through the Chamber Store.

    Now in its 7th year, the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce is proud to bring Expo2018 to our members. Hundreds of serious business people from throughout Charlotte County will spend one day “heating up the business climate” at the biggest business event of the New Year.  Over 100 member businesses and organizations will be on hand at the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center in Punta Gorda. Put your BUSINESS, your BRAND and your PRODUCTS in the SPOTLIGHT on the “Hottest Business Day In Paradise.” Members sign up with the EXPO2018 Participation Agreement-Dec. 1 offer and for details about booth size, pipe and drape, and about the event print the EXPO 2018 Event Brochure.BW

    The DeSoto-Charlotte Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers is hosting our Inaugural Run the Ranch at Camp Turner Loose in Arcadia, presented by the Denise Grimsley Campaign, on December 2nd, 2017. The 5K run/walk is a trail run through a working cattle ranch that exposes runners to Florida Agriculture. Monies raised benefit leadership development for young agriculturalists in DeSoto/Charlotte counties. Visit https://runsignup.com/Race/FL/ArcadiaFL/DesotoCharlotteYFRRuntheRanch for details and to sign up! For more information/sponsorship opportunities contact Morgan Norris at morgan.norris@me.com.

    This Week’s Happenings has posted. Click here for website • Click here to read online (PDF; printer-friendly). Punta Gorda/Englewood Beach Visitor & Convention Bureau

    Please patronize the Chamber’s Sustaining Partners:  (Click on the links to go to their websites.)

    · Platinum:  Bayfront Health Port Charlotte & Punta Gorda; Buffalo Graffix; Charlotte County Ford; Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center; Charlotte State Bank & Trust; Charlotte Sun/Sun Coast Media Group; Florida SouthWestern State College; Harbor Style Magazine; Integrity Employee Leasing; Monarch Direct; State Insurance Agency – Brian Chapman, Jr.; Strang, Olsen & Lynch, CPAs PA; Tampa Bay Rays/Charlotte Stone Crabs; Waste Management of Charlotte County; Worksite Employee Leasing

    ·  Diamond: Centennial Bank;  Farr Law Firm; Fawcett Memorial Hospital; Nix & Associates Real Estate; Panther Hollow Dental Lodge; St. Andrews South Golf Club; WhitCo Insurance Agency-Alexia Martin;

    ·  EmeraldFreedom Boat Club; Friendly Floors; Nolan Family Insurance; Port Charlotte Florist; Sandhill Healing Centers, Inc.; South Port Square; The Wyvern Hotel; Zaxby’s

    Ribbon Cuttings/Ground Breakings (to which all members are invited):

    Mon., Nov. 20, 5:30 p.m., Charlotte Community Foundation, 227 Sullivan St., PG.

    Sat., Dec, 2, 11:00 a.m., Sleep Number, 1851 Tamiami Trail, Unit 102  (1 Year Anniversary).

    New Members

    K2 Insurance, PLLC, 1531 S. Tamiami Trail, #703, Venice 34285
    Karen Baker, Ph: 941-893-9838
    www.k2insurancepllc.com     k2insurance@comcast.net   

    Chamber Member Events

    Please join Pomegranate & Fig Gift Boutique on Saturday, November 25th for their annual Holiday Open House! We will be celebrating Small Business Saturday with door prizes, gift with purchase, and holiday treats! Open Monday-Saturday 10am-5:30pm. Located in Downtown Punta Gorda at 117 W. Marion Ave. For more information contact call 941-205-2333 or email pomegranateandfig@yahoo.com

    Florida SouthWestern State College presents Charlotte County Habitat for Humanity’s 19th Annual Turkey Trot 5K Run/Fun Walk.  Race begins at 7:30 am on Thanksgiving morning, November 23rd.  Fun for the whole family with refreshments and awards. Register by Nov. 10th and receive a complimentary Turkey Trot T-shirt! Early registration: $30 per person, $25 youth 4 – 14.   All registrations: $35 after Nov. 20thRegister online at www.charlottecountyhfh.org or call 941-639-3162.  Net proceeds go directly to helping local families in need of safe, decent affordable housing.

    Animal Welfare League present Basket Bingo! Win baskets filled with items from $50 and up to $150 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 2 at the Cultural Center, 2280 Aaron St., Port Charlotte. Proceeds benefit the homeless animals of Charlotte County. Tickets are only $25 and includes 10 games of bingo and light refreshments. Come support the animals for an afternoon of Bingo fun! Call 941-625-6720 for tickets!

    Festival of Trees at Life Care Center of Punta Gorda fundraiser.  Deadline for entry is Friday, Dec. 1, trees setup will be Friday, Dec. 8.  Party and silent auction on Thursday, Dec. 14 from 3:30-6pm with bidding ending at 5:30p.m.  Proceeds will go to the Support Our Troops military charity and Life Care Gives Back, which is supporting hurricane relief in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  For more information contact Andrea Hingson at 941-815-8548 or andrea_hingson@lcca.com.  Print the flier Punta Gorda Festival of Trees Flyer.

    The Charlotte Players invites you to join us for the third annual Madrigal Dinner to be held in the new recreation building at First Alliance Church on Midway Boulevard.  A cast of more than 75 talented volunteers will provide the evening’s entertainment in Renaissance dress, as well as a medieval-style reception and dinner. Different community leaders in costume will be featured each night. The medieval celebration of Christmas takes place on three nights: Thursday, Nov. 30; Friday, Dec. 1, and Saturday, Dec. 2. For tickets call 625-4175 Ext. 220 or order online at: www.charlotteplayers.org. Tickets are $40

    Charlotte County Community Services will host a meeting to gain feedback on our current programs, activities, events and services on Tuesday, Nov. 28 from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. at Harold Avenue Park Recreation Center. The meeting will encompass programs and services at: Ann Dever Regional Park, Charlotte Sports Park, Harold Avenue Park, J.M. Berlin/Rotary Skate Park, Port Charlotte Beach Park, South County Regional Park and Tringali Park. Childcare for ages 4 and older will be provided for anyone wishing to participate in this meeting. 941-627-1074 or Mike.Massoglia@CharlotteCountyFL.gov

    The Charlotte Chorale is very proud to have been awarded the 2017 Hottest Performing Arts Group by the Harbor Style magazine. Under the leadership and direction of the Artistic Director, Dr. William Dederer, the 2017-18 season promises to be another successful year!

    December 9th, 2017:”It’s Christmas!” March 3, 2018:”Gabrieli to Gershwin” and April 21, 2018:”The Wonder of Water” To order tickets for the Chorale Concerts please call:  941-204-0033. Benefit Concert: January 14, 2018:  “Yesterday Beatles Tribute Band” To order tickets for the Benefit Concert call:  941-833-5444.

    Nav-A-Gator Happenings – Live music, November 24, Sunny Jim 6-9pm; November 25 , Paul Roush 2-5pm; November 26, Five & Dime Boys 2-5pm; November 30, John Reno 6-9pm; December 3, Gary & Kerri 2-5pm.  Cover charge canned goods and nonperishable food items that are donated to a local food bank.

    Jesus Loves You Ministry, Mobile Outreach to the Homeless, announces: First Annual Christmas Fundraiser Dinner, Friday, December 15th at First United Methodist Church of Punta Gorda “Life Center” 507 West Marion.  Door opens at 5:30 with Dinner at 6:30.  Buffet style with desert served at the table.  The evening promises be a fun-filled night with auction items, door prizes and Christmas carols,  To purchase your tickets call Leslie 941-661-8117.

    PicklePlex of Punta Gorda at Florida Southwestern State College invites you to the Pickleball VIP Open House on Wed., December 6 from 6 to 8 pm at South County Reginal Park, main gyn.  Join us and learn to play.  Please wear comfortable clothes and gym shoes.  Questions, email info@pickleplex.org. Equipment and water provided.

    Take a break from shopping and stop by ZAXBY’s on Black Friday, November 24. Enjoy half price Zappetizers with purchase of any adult meal and half price boneless wings all day on November 24! 19590 Cochran Blvd. www.Zaxbys.com.

    King Fisher Fleet at Fishermen’s Village is accepting reservations for Christmas Light Canal Cruises. These family-oriented cruises tour residential canals to view Christmas lights, displays, and decorations on homes, boats, seawalls and docks. Canal Cruises run every evening from December 2nd to December 31st with three departures each night: 6:00 p.m., 7:30 p.m., and 9:00 p.m. and each cruise lasts one hour.  Reservations are a must! Private boat Christmas Light Canal Cruises are available for up to 6 passengers.  For reservations or more information, call (941) 639-0969, or visit http://www.kingfisherfleet.com/cruises-christmas.

    The Forever Young dancers will be performing at Senior Friendship Centers’ Friendship Café in Harbour Heights at 27420 Voyageur Drive on Wednesday, December 13th at noon.  Forever Young evolved from the Charlotte County Adult and Community Education system.  Their troupe is made up of tap dancers, singers and comedy characters.  Their performance will include several costume changes for this Holiday-themed event.  Anyone age 60+ wishing to enjoy a meal in addition to the show, please RSVP by December 1st to 255-0723 so that we can order an appropriate amount of meals.

    Gilded Grape Winery & Wine Bar, 4069 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte events: November 22:   Jeannie Smyth – Karaoke 7 to 10pm; November 24:  Mark Dupuy – “Music You Remember”  7 to 10pm; November 25:  Jeannie Smyth   “Jazz & Blues Lady” New Orleans Style 7 to 10pm.  The Wine Bar offers a global selection of wines and a variety of beer and craft beers.  Hours are Tues & Thurs 12 noon-6pm, Wednesday, Friday – Saturday 12:00 noon to 10:00pm. Visit www.gildedgrape.com or call 235-9463.

    Gregg’s Automotive’s Christmas Light Tour fundraiser for Relay for Life is Tuesday, December 12 at 7 p.m.   The tour will depart the Herald Court Parking Garage and last about 2-1/2 hours.  Christmas trivia and carols as you tour the community, $20 pp or $35 per couple.  Reservations at 639-3730 or greenhibiscustransport@gmail.com.

    The Punta Gorda Garden Club announces its 24th annual Holly Days Home Tour on December 1 and 2 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm in the Punta Gorda Historic District. Using the theme “Christmas Memories” teams of club members will decorate four homes and the First United Methodist Church.  Tickets are $15 from club members or at the offices of the Charlotte County and Punta Gorda Chambers of Commerce. On tour days tickets will be sold at the church or at each of the homes. Proceeds will fund the Club’s scholarship program and community projects.

    On the 130th anniversary of the City, to salute the Founders of Punta Gorda and those who followed in making Punta Gorda a continually better community, Punta Gorda Founders’ Week will be celebrated December 1 through December 7 with lots of fun and educational events that encompass both historic and holiday themes.  Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a complete schedule of events. 

    Green Hibiscus Christmas Light Tour’s beginning December 13 through December 21.  Join us for a Christmas Light Tour of Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte, tours will depart from Herald Court parking Garage and last approximately 2 ½ hours.  Enjoy Christmas Trivia and Christmas Carols, $20pp or $35per couple. Seating is limited call to reserve your seats 941-639-3720.

    Chamber Member News

    Happy days at Classic Coin Company. Ruth and Andy wish to welcome Violet, our newest grandchild.  To help celebrate her birth, we have two specials running at the store. First, Gold 20 Franc coins at $250.00, each is .1867oz of gold, some dating back to the 1850’s. Second special is 1oz silver rounds or bars at $18.00 each. These are .999 fine silver, struck with different designs. Both items are great stocking stuffers. Thank you all, and God bless you Violet.  Visit us at, 2301D Tamiami Trail. Port Charlotte 941-629-1508.

    The Charlotte-DeSoto Building Industry Association will present the 2018 SWFL Parade of HomesTM from March 3 through the 11 and area home builders can register now to take part.  Builders and sponsors interested in participation information should contact the CDBIA at (941) 625-0804. The Deadline to enter is January 15.  A reduced entry fee is being offered to builders who enter before November 30.

    Time is running out for enrollment with January 2018 start dates at Charlotte Technical College. We offer 20+ programs in various sectors. Our goal is to train our students to meet the needs of our area employers. We appreciate your continued support in helping us meet our mission to provide an effective, innovative technical education preparing students to enter, advance, and succeed in the workplace. (941) 255-7500 Ext. 195, mindy.hanak@yourcharlotteschools.net

    J.D.’s Bistro and Grille will be open on Christmas Eve for Brunch!  Please be on the lookout next week for details!!!  New Year’s Eve is getting close and we have big and exciting plans to Jazz up your New Year!    Enjoy the Musical Styling of Mickey and his band while you savor the delectable delicacies prepared by Chef Cortes and toast the New Year. JDNEWYEARS Make your reservations now while seating is available. E JD’s Bistro & Grill, 1951 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, FL 33948 call (941) 255-0994.

    Charlotte County Pride, Inc hosts the annual event Charlotte County Pride Fest at Laishley Park on January 20, 2018. This year the event will host Steven Andrade as Cher, Spikey Van Dykey, the Cheaters, Elysian Sex Drive and others. This event is for the entire family and free, all we ask is a donation at the gate. Chaps will be collecting hygiene products. Bring your chairs, leave your coolers and pets at home and come enjoy the afternoon. Vendor booths will be selling food and more. For more information visit http://www.charlottecountypridefl.org or call 941-204-3505.

    When reviewing criminal records, arrests without convictions shouldn’t be used to deny employment.  An “arrest” means only that an individual was taken into custody for some period of time because the police believed there was “probable cause” the individual had committed a crime.  A “conviction”, on the other hand, means that there was a court-based, factual adjudication of guilt … meaning the court found the individual had actually committed a crime beyond a reasonable doubt.  *** For FCRA-compliant employment and tenancy screening, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

    The Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham and the La Quinta Inn & Suites are official drop off locations for the Charlotte County Marines Toys for Tots program. Please consider dropping off a new, unwrapped toy to either hotel location to be distributed to children in need this Christmas season. Drop off locations: 4056 Tamiami Trail Port Charlotte, FL 33948 or 812 Kings Hwy Port Charlotte.

    Suncoast Humane Society  Meet Figaro! He is a 7 mos. old frisky feline who is full of energy. He has a sleek and lovely black coat with golden eyes. He loves attention and will rub his head against you asking for some petting time. Figaro is very vocal & expressive. He’s a great family cat and good with children. He will enjoy a lot of interactive time and being showered with plenty of toys. http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Cat-Domestic-Shorthair-36631298

    C.A.R.E. is busy making holiday plans for the victims, survivors, and their families who have sought shelter or are receiving services from our agency. We depend on our very generous Charlotte County community donors to help us provide a fun-filled and bountiful holiday season for our families.  If you want to be a Santa-behind-the-scenes, please contact Jamie Hufford at 941-639-5499 to let her know what gift commitment you will be making to benefit our C.A.R.E. families.

    Charlotte State Bank & Trust is again serving as a collection point for holiday donations to help brighten the season for area children in need. Customers and visitors are invited to select one or more of the “wish list” cards displayed at bank offices, purchase appropriate gifts for the children, then return the unwrapped gifts and wish lists to the bank. Florida Guardian ad Litem lists are available at the Murdock, North Port, Parkside and Peachland offices, while Salvation Army lists are at the Charlotte Harbor and Punta Gorda offices.

    Rays Spring Training at Charlotte Sports Park will begin on Friday, February 23 against the Pittsburgh Pirates. The full home schedule is available now at www.raysbaseball.com/spring. Place a deposit now to reserve your priority for the best seating locations. Season tickets start at just $258 and provide access to the best seats at the best prices, and other great benefits. Visit raysbaseball.com/spring or call 888-FAN-RAYS. Single Game Tickets go on sale Friday, January 12 at 10 a.m. at raysbaseball.com/spring, and at the Charlotte Sports Park box office on Saturday, January 13 at 10 a.m.

    Kays Ponger & Uselton and Lemon Bay Funeral Homes and Cremation Services and Gulf Pines Memorial Park have teamed up with Toys for Tots to bring hope to disadvantaged children.   Please drop off new, unwrapped toys to one of our locations by December 10th 2017.  2405 Harbor Blvd. Port Charlotte / 635 E. Marion Ave. Punta Gorda / 1935 S. Tamiami Trail Venice / 2 Buchans Landing Englewood / 2401 Englewood Rd. Englewood.  For more information please visit our website www.kays-ponger.com or follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/kaysponger

    Heron Creek Golf & Country Club invites you to take advantage of our Practice Facility Membership Special. These special offers make wonderful Holiday Gifts! Hurry, offer ends soon. Call Richelle at 941-240-5100

    The Nav-A-Gator Grill & Marina Christmas Lights Canal Cruises start December 2. This year we are offering a 2 for 1 special for groups and clubs and your group would also receive a sunset cruise during January 2018 at no additional charge. The tour boat can seat 30 people and you may bring your own beverages. The boat departs at 5:30 and 7:30 nightly from Laishley Marina and travels through the decorated canals of Punta Gorda Isles, returning at approximately 7pm and 9pm.  Advanced reservations are required. Call 941-627-3474.

    The Gilded Grape Winery and Wine Bar is making our venue available on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday evenings to members to Host private meetings and functions, after 5pm week days, Deposit to Hold.   Call Paul Malcolm at 941-235-9463 to discuss.

    Just for fun


    Real Mothers don’t eat quiche; they don’t have time to make it.

    Real Mothers know that their kitchen utensils are probably in the sandbox.

    Real Mothers often have sticky floors, filthy ovens and happy kids.

    Real Mothers know that dried play dough doesn’t come out of shag carpets.

    Real Mothers don’t want to know what the vacuum just sucked up.

    Real Mothers sometimes ask ‘Why me?’ and get their answer when a little voice says, ‘Because I love you best.’

    Real Mothers know that a child’s growth is not measured by height or years or grade, it is marked by the progression of Mama to Mom to Mother.

    4 YEARS OF AGE – My Mommy can do anything!

    8 YEARS OF AGE – My Mom knows a lot! A whole lot!

    12 YEARS OF AGE – My Mother doesn’t really know quite everything.

    14 YEARS OF AGE – Naturally, Mother doesn’t know that, either.

    16 YEARS OF AGE – Mother? She’s hopelessly old-fashioned.

    18 YEARS OF AGE – That old woman? She’s way out of date!

    25 YEARS OF AGE – Well, she might know a little bit about it.

    35 YEARS OF AGE – Before we decide, let’s get Mom’s opinion.

    45 YEARS OF AGE – Wonder what Mom would have thought about it?

    65 YEARS OF AGE – Wish I could talk it over with Mom.


    Do you have exciting information about YOUR business?  Send it to the Chamber and we’ll share it with our other members! Email news about your business to Julie Mathis at jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org.  Please keep it to 90 words or fewer. We reserve the right to publish as well as edit any posting. BOL goes out weekly on Mondays; please email your news by the preceding Friday. 

    Julie Mathis
    Executive Director
    Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce
    311 West Retta Esplanade
    Punta Gorda, Florida 33950

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