Charlotte Sun Column - November 14, 2017

     The public is invited to attend our 21st Annual Holiday Celebration during the Third Wednesday Coffee tomorrow.  More than 30 members will decorate the tables with a holiday theme and many will have give-a-ways and yummies as they showcase their products and services.  Please join us from 7:15 to 8:30 a.m. at the Event Center and get some ideas for your holiday shopping list.

     On Thurs., Congressman Rooney’s Mobile Office will be at the District Office, 226 Taylor St., Punta Gorda from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. for mobile office hours.  Caseworkers will be on hand to help with any trouble you may be having with a federal agency (not state or local issues).    

     The Nov. Business Card Exchange is Thursday at Busey Bank in Port Charlotte.  Please bring plenty of business cards to hand out and a small gift to promote your business and get some added name and face recognition.

     Our 39th Annual Christmas Parade is Sat., Dec. 9.  We’ll step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center (next to Charlotte High), head north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  The reviewing stand will be in front of Centennial Bank.   For more information, please visit our website or call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222.

     The “Lighting of the Village” is Sat., at 5:30 p.m. at Fishermen’s Village.  The Downtown Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting will be held on Fri., Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. in the City Marketplace property.  Punta Gorda Founders’ Week is December 1 through December 7.  Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a schedule of events

     If you’re looking for something to do with your children over the Thanksgiving break, why not visit LaunchMyCareerFL.org, a collaborative effort between the Florida Chamber Foundation, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Strada Education Network.  It’s an online tool that helps students determine their ideal majors and jobs. This interactive website provides information on programs at public institutions and training programs in Florida.

     We are officially in the “there is something every night of the week” time of year.  Please visit the community calendar at www.charlottecountychamber.org and read Business Online every Monday (also on our website) so you’re up-to-date on everything happening in this happening community.

     Please drop off a new, unwrapped toy(s) for Toys for Tots in our Port Charlotte office and for the Fresh Jersey Tomatoes 2nd Annual Toy Drive in our Punta Gorda office.  It’s so nice to have two offices to serve the community twice.  Thank you!

Business OnLine - November 13, 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 13, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events:


Wed., Nov. 15, 7:15 to 8:30 a.m., Third Wednesday Coffee, Holiday Celebration.  Decorate a table with a holiday theme and promote your products and services.  Register online or call the Port Charlotte office.

Thurs., Nov. 16, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Busey Bank, 1490 Tamiami Trail, PC

General Information


21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays, in conjunction with the Third Wednesday Coffee, November 15, at the Event Center.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme.  Special recognition will be given for the most creative, most unusual and most attractive holiday business displays.  For more information print the Holiday Celebration 2017 flier.

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

LaunchMyCareerFL.org, a collaborative effort between the Florida Chamber Foundation, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Strada Education Network is an online tool that helps students determine their ideal majors and jobs. This interactive website provides information on programs at public institutions and training programs in Florida.

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

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.

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):


Tues., Nov. 14, 5:30 p.m., H & R Block, 2150 Tamiami Trail, Suite12, PC

Wed., Nov. 15 during the Holiday Celebration, Peace River Sail and Power Squadron

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

Chamber Member Events


On Thursday, November 16th Congressman Rooney’s Punta Gorda District Office, 226 Taylor St, Ste. 230, Punta Gorda, Open from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. for mobile office hours.  Caseworkers from my office will be on hand to help with any trouble you may be having with federal agency. My caseworkers cannot assist with state or local issues, or problems you may be having with private companies.    You are always welcome to reach out to my office anytime at 202-225-5792. Visit my Facebook page and sign up for my e-newsletter to receive these regular updates.

Charlotte County Society for Human Resource Management hosts its final program in 2017 this Wednesday, 11/15/2017 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM at Laishley Crab House. Legal Update: “Mr. Trump goes to Washington”.  Speaker:  Karen Morinelli of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Strewart.  Sponsor:  Employee Care, Inc. Members $15 Guests $20 R.S.V.P https://ccshrm.shrm.org/events/2017/11/ccshrm-monthly-meeting-legal-updates-ogletree-deakins.  Topics include labor and employment development issues during the first year of the Trump administration.  Questions - call/text (941) 626-1830 or email Kim Byrne at kimshrmfl@gmail.com.  Connect with Charlotte County SHRM on LinkedIn!

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. 20th. Register 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 presents 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!

Tiki Tom Entertainment - for your Event = “EVENTertainment.” We still have some openings for Christmas and Holiday parties. If you need live music, we are your guys. This week: Tuesday Elks PG 2 to 5 PM. Or Come see us eVentertain for Gregg’s Automotive downtown PG this Friday night/6 - 10 pm. Or, catch us at the Wyvern Perch 360 Saturday night 7 - 10 PM. www.tikitomrocks.com

The United Way of Charlotte County presents the 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration on Wed., November 15 from 5:39 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling 627-3539 or Click this link to purchase your tickets to our 4th Annual Beaujolais Celebration!

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

Nav-A-Gator Happenings – Live music, November 17, Don Middlebrook 6-9pm; November 18, Sunny Jim & John Patti 2-5pm; November 19, Gary & Kerri 2-5pm. Cover charge canned goods and nonperishable food items that are donated to a local food bank

Turkey - In The – Hole - Saturday, November 18, from 9:30 am - 3:00 pm - Gator Wilderness Camp School, 44930 Farabee Road, Punta Gorda.  Please join us for our annual Turkey In The Hole Celebration Meal & Fundraiser Auction. A time to thank our Heavenly Father for his Faithfulness!  For more information print the flier turkey in the hole or contact us at 941-639-7722.

Charlotte Symphony’s Grub Crawl is Tues., Nov. 15 from 5 to 9 pm. Enjoy food from 8 downtown restaurants for $20.  For reservations, please call the Symphony at 205-5996.  Pick up your wrist bands at FM Don’s.

Please join us at T.T.’s Tiki Bar located on the waterfront of the Four Points by Sheraton Punta Gorda.  On Wednesday, we have Jimmy Papas, Thursday we have Jeff Hughes, Friday we have the Freecoasters, Saturday is TBA, and Sunday we have Cape Cod Smitty.  Please make your Thanksgiving reservations by calling Stacy at 941-637-6770.  We have three seatings to choose from and a three course meal for only $23.95 per person.  We are accepting Christmas and New Year’s reservations as well.  The Tiki Bar….The Place To Be!!

Harvest of Art & Fine Arts Festival now on display at the Visual Arts Center – exhibits are always free and open to the public. Paint like Picasso Nov. 15 at 6pm – wine, snacks, canvas and paints included for $35. Join us for tapas, sangria, entertainment, & auction at 'A Tapas Night' Nov. 17 at 7pm - tickets going fast, call for yours today! For details visit www.visualartcenter.org. Located across from Fishermen's Village @ 210 Maud St, Punta Gorda. Gallery & Gift Shop Hours: M-F, 9-4 & Sat, 10-2.

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

Upcoming Workshop at Charlotte Community Foundation - Roles and Functions of the Board – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30). This workshop will provide instruction for nonprofit board members on their roles and includes fiduciary and legal responsibilities. Attendees should include the Executive Director (or equivalent) and nonprofit Board members. Topics covered will include: Relationships and responsibilities, Conflicts of Interest, Leadership and Governance and Ethics as it relates to nonprofits, $15 per participant; includes refreshments, light snacks and materials. Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077to reserve your space.

Key events at Punta Gorda Isles Civic Association; call 941-637-1655 or go PGICA.org for more information. On November 14, from 11am – 1pm, Fawcett Memorial Hospital will have three surgeons discuss GI Disorders. A light lunch will be provided. Please RSVP for a reservation.  Sandwich Seminar: Tuesday, November 21, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Aging vs. The Onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. Preregister.   Painting, jewelry making, fishing, photography, exercise, dance, basket weaving. Call for dates and times.

88Keys at the Wyvern invites you to a Whiskey Dinner on Nov. 14 from 5 to 9 p.m.  Reservations are required by calling 639-7700 x7109.  www.thewyvernhotel.com.

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

6th Annual Twins Tot Walk on November 19, 2017 at Laishley Park, 120 Laishley Ct., Punta Gorda from 4:00pm to sunset.  Individual walkers $22.00 or sign up a team, runners and strollers welcome.  T-shirts on a first come – first served basis.   For more information print the flier http://justagainstchildrendrowning.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Big-2017.pdf or visit our website www.justagainstchildrendrowning.org or call 941-626-7106.

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.

Gilded Grape Winery & Wine Bar, 4069 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte events: November 15:    Jeannie Smyth – Karaoke, 7 to 10pm; November 17:  Susan Derosier – Wine Glass Painting, 4:30 to 6:30pm; November 17:  Steve Widmeyer “One Voice, One Guitar” 7 to 10pm; November 18:   Tom Lloyd – Karaoke, 7 to 10pm.  Visit www.gildedgrape.com or call 235-9463.

Gulfshore Opera presents the Gulfshore Tenors in concert performing with a jazz combo on Friday, November 17that 7:30pm at the Cultural Center Theatre in Port Charlotte.  The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation unique to SW Florida. This concert will feature some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some familiar opera favorites. Tickets are $25 per person.  Buy Tickets at www.gulfshoreopera.org or call us at 239-529-3925.

The Fine Arts Festival inspired by Picasso is happening at the Visual Arts Center in November. Events include a Paint like Picasso Nov. 15. Find all events at visualartcenter.org. Don’t miss the Main Event: A Tapas Night with tapas, sangria, live music and more Nov. 17 at 7pm. Tickets are $50. Ask us about VIP Seating! To purchase tickets, call 639-8810 or visit us at 210 Maud St in Punta Gorda.

St. Andrews South Golf Club, the only private golf club in Charlotte County, is hosting an Open House on Saturday, November 18th from 10am – 2pm.  Tour the course and enjoy lunch “on the house”.  Join as a full golf member at the Open House and receive special incentives including: 50% off of the initiation fee; unlimited golf for a month; one year of free bag storage; 3 private golf lessons; complimentary rounds of golf for family or friends; and reciprocals with the Isles and Charlotte Harbor Yacht Clubs and 40 other area golf courses. Please call Sue for more details—639-5261 ext. 3.

Drug Free Punta Gorda Town Hall Meeting (Over Lunch), Tuesday, November 14, 11:30am-1:00pm. Hurricane Charley’s Raw Bar & Grill, Lunches individually purchased. Join the community conversation: Preventing Teen Marijuana Abuse in Punta Gorda. Presentation Panel: Education: CC Schools, Director of School Support Services Dr. Michael Desjardins; The Academy Principal Jack Ham; PGMS Principal Tina Dionisio; State’s Attorney’s Office: Tracy Detzel; Law Enforcement:  PGPD Corp Tony Pribble; CCSO Corp Joseph Eilerman; C.A.R.E.: Karen McElhaney; and FSW Faculty- Nursing: Barbara Kilbride. RSVP -monica.babcock@yourcharlotteschools.net  941-740-4358 

Fishermen’s Village will herald in the Holiday Season with a spectacular “Lighting of the Village” Saturday, November 18.  This celebration is the official kick off of the annual “Festival of Lights”, a display of more than one million lights.  Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a ribbon cutting with Santa and City of Punta Gorda officials. Live music, dancing and more.  Patrons are being asked to bring toilet paper, toiletries and canned goods to be donated to “Share The Blessings Ministry”, an all-volunteer, nonprofit charity benefiting those in need in Charlotte County.

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.

Tringali Park will be hosting a Super Mini Tennis Program, a 4-week introduction to tennis for children ages 4 to 6 years old. The activity will be held on Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. starting Nov. 15 through Dec. 13. The Junior Youth Tennis Program for children ages 7 to 12 years old. The activity will be held every Monday from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. starting Nov. 13 through Dec. 4. For more information contact Jill Taylor, recreation specialist, at 941-681-3742 or email Jill.Taylor@CharlotteCountyFL.gov .

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.

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.

Have you heard about the rock painting craze? Murdock Stones Etc. sells all kind of rocks that can be painted on.  You can buy as little as 1 pound at a time.  Check them out at 7621 Sawyer Circle (off Gasparilla Rd. / 771... look for the World's Largest Mailbox) or at 590 Prineville St in Port Charlotte by the Sun Flea Market. We have a great variety of mulch, boulders, stones, shell, stepping stones, pavers, & more! We offer discounts on bulk products to Charlotte County Chamber members. www.murdockstonesetc.com

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.

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.

Suncoast Humane Society - Meet Happy, a 2 yr. old Domestic Medium Hair weighing 9 lbs. He has a soft, lush grey coat and beautiful golden eyes. Happy enjoys spending time in the lanai watching squirrels scurry about in the yard. And he loves to be scratched, especially underneath his chin. Happy will be happiest in a quiet, peaceful home as loud noises frighten him. His calm demeanor will bring comfort to his new human. http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Cat-Domestic-Medium-Hair-29484268

Florida Power & Light is committed to enriching Florida students’ experiences in STEM education programs. These programs help break down barriers, provide more opportunities to reach traditionally underserved populations, provide candidates with skills FPL needs in the future and prepare today’s students for exciting, well-paying jobs . Among its education initiatives, FPL sponsors a traveling science show across the state as well as 70 robotics teams across its service area over the past three years, including Tarpon Robotics and Robo Mojo from Charlotte County, as well as several robotics competitions.

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.

The Gulf Coast Partnership is a community-wide initiative to understand homelessness, identify best practices to meet the needs of the homeless and those at risk of homelessness, and to forge a community consensus. By applying for grants, we bring operational support funding to organizations in Charlotte County. These grants assist in providing emergency shelter to homeless persons; engage persons living on the street through outreach activities; provide homeless prevention and re-housing services to help those who are homeless become stably housed. For more information, visit www.gulfcoastpartnership.org

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.

Should you check social media for background information on job applicants?  Social media checks may provide important information, but social media is also likely to be unreliable.  Traditional background checks are generally reliable because they're based on independent third-party information provided by the court, schools, and past employers.  By contrast, social media information is self-reported and may contain biased, false, or doctored information, plus information that's unlawful for an employer to be checking!  For FCRA-compliant employment and tenancy screening, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

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.

Kudos


Melissa Hays, the new personal banker at the Punta Gorda office of Charlotte State Bank & Trust, has nearly 16 years of banking experience. She has worked as a teller, teller supervisor and customer service representative and was rewarded for excellence in customer service and teller operations. In addition to her banking experience, Melissa managed the Children’s Closet retail store in Port Charlotte and worked for a family practice physician. The North Port mother of two also spent four years in missionary work and remains a church volunteer.

Job Spot


Florida SouthWestern State College has a need to hire an Adjunct Professor to teach Biology for the Spring, 2018 semester at the Charlotte Campus. The position requires a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with at least 18 graduate semester credit hours in Biology.  If you are interested in this part time, temporary opportunity, click here to apply:   https://fswsc-careers.silkroad.com/.  Join our team of adjunct faculty and inspire our students to “Dedicate to Graduate”.   FSW is an Equal Opportunity Employer

As a successful Sponsorship Sales Representative for the Charlotte Stone Crabs, you will produce corporate sponsorship sales revenues by setting appointments with regional business leaders and selling new corporate sponsorship's for the club, as well as servicing / maintaining existing sponsorship accounts.  You will report directly to the General Manager and complete in or assist in the following tasks during the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training and Charlotte Stone Crabs regular season.  Full time position.  Salary + Commission. Submit your resumé to: jcook@stonecrabsbaseball.com

Roger D. Eaton, Charlotte County, Clerk & Comptroller is recruiting for a Court Services Manager.  This is a highly responsible position overseeing the Criminal Court Services County/Circuit Felony, Misdemeanor and Civil Traffic departments which include E-filing, recording, indexing, redaction, fees and fines, collections, and records retention rules for these services.  This is a full-time Exempt position offering a full benefits package.  Experience/knowledge in Florida criminal statute laws is required.  Min pay is $22.94/hour.  For more details or to apply go to: www.Co.Charlotte.FL.US click on Employee Relations Menu, Job Listings link or email employee.relations@charlotteclerk.com

Just for fun


The Bagpiper...
As a bagpiper, he played many gigs. Recently he was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper's cemetery in the back country.

As he was not familiar with the backwoods, he got lost, and being a typical man, he didn't stop to ask for directions. 

He finally arrived an hour late and saw the undertaker had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight. There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch. He felt badly and apologized to the men for being late.

He went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. He didn't know what else to do, so he started to play.

The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. He played out his heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. He played like he never played before for this homeless man.

And as he played "Amazing Grace", the workers began to weep. When he finished, he packed up his bagpipes and started for his car. Though his head was hung low, his heart was full.

As he opened the door to his car, he heard one of the workers say, "I never seen anything like that before and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."

Apparently, he is still lost... it's a man thing.

 

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
941-639-2222
jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org

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Charlotte Sun Column - November 8, 2017

     Coordination is the key to putting on a successful parade.  First, you have to contact the North Pole to make sure you-know-who is available (he is).  You need to get roads closed, proclamations read, port-a-potties ordered, judges, reviewing stands, shuttles, golf carts, cooperation from several state and local organizations and much more.  We need to know the length of the float, truck, number of walkers, bikers, etc., so that elves Ron Thomas and Ed Hill can measure the parking lot the night before parade day and have you ready to go.  I write all of this to encourage you to get your registration form to us so we can be prepared. Our 39th Annual Christmas Parade is Sat., Dec. 9.  We’ll step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center (next to Charlotte High), head north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  The reviewing stand will be in front of Centennial Bank.   For more information, please visit our website or call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222.

      Networking at Noon is today at the Burg’r Bar, 317 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda.  Please call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222 to see if there’s still room and to select your food choice.

     The public is invited to attend our 21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays during the Nov. 15 Third Wednesday Coffee.  Members will decorate the tables with a holiday theme and many will have give-a-ways and yummies as they showcase their products and services.  Please join us from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. at the Event Center and get some ideas for your holiday shopping list.

     The Nov. Business Card Exchange is  Nov. 16 at Busey Bank in Port Charlotte.

     The “Lighting of the Village” is Sat., Nov. 18, starting at 5:30 p.m. at Fishermen’s Village.  The annual Downtown Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting will be held on Fri., Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. in the City Marketplace property.  Punta Gorda Founders’ Week will be celebrated December 1 through December 7 with lots of fun and educational events.  Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a complete schedule of events

     We are a collection site for Toys for Tots in our Port Charlotte office and for the Fresh Jersey Tomatoes 2nd Annual Toy Drive tor children receiving services from Charlotte Behavioral Health Care in our Punta Gorda office.  It’s so nice to have two offices to serve the community twice.  Please drop off a new, unwrapped toy at a location near you and support local children in need.  Thank you!

Business OnLine - November 6, 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 6, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events:


Wed., Nov. 8, Networking at Noon, Burg’r Bar, 317 Tamiami Trail, PG.  Please make a reservation and food selection online (www.charlottecountychamber.org) or by calling 627-2222.

Wed., Nov. 15, 7:15 to 8:30 a.m., Third Wednesday Coffee, Holiday Celebration.  Decorate a table with a holiday theme and promote your products and services.  Register online or call the Port Charlotte office.

Thurs., Nov. 16, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Busey Bank, 1490 Tamiami Trail, PC

General Information


21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays, in conjunction with the Third Wednesday Coffee, November 15, at the Event Center.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme.  Special recognition will be given for the most creative, most unusual and most attractive holiday business displays.  For more information print the Holiday Celebration 2017 flier.

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.

You only have two weeks to apply for federal disaster assistance. Assistance may cover temporary housing, essential home repairs and serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance. The deadline to apply for assistance is Thursday, Nov. 9. The quickest way to apply for federal assistance is online at www.disasterassistance.gov.

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

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):


Tues., Nov. 14, 5:30 p.m., H & R Block, 2150 Tamiami Trail, Suite12, PC

Wed., Nov. 15 during the Holiday Celebration, Peace River Sail and Power Squadron

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

New Members


Absolute Window & Shutter, Inc., 1611 Manzana Ave., PG 33950
Patrick Leonard, Ph: 941-916-9003
www.absolute-window.com  info@absolutewindow.net     

Coastal Premier Insurance Group
902 Clint Moore Rd., #132, Boca Raton 33487, 866 Tamiami Trail, #8, PC 33953
Angela McKennon, Ph: 941-235-7776
www.cpigsolutions.com  angela@cpigsolutions.com
Sponsor: Angelina Perry, DEX Imaging     

Dime Time Media, LLC
3280-55A Tamiami Trail #102, PC 33952, 2280 Aaron St., PC 33952
Andrew McDonald, Ph: 941-625-3463
www.dimetimemedia.com  andrew@dimetimemedia.com
Sponsor: Kevin Graham, Suncoast One Title & Closings   

Chamber Member Events


Postponed by Hurricane Irma, the fifth annual Comedy for a Cause fundraiser will be held on Thursday, Nov. 9, at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, Punta Gorda. All previously distributed sponsor, VIP and show-only tickets will be honored on the new date, when eight area business leaders will perform improvisation comedy under the direction of Charlotte County Commissioner Dr. Chris Constance. Tickets may be purchased at www.comedy4acause.net. Donations in cast members’ names may also be made that site as well as www.crowdrise.com/fifthAnnualComedyforaCause. Call 941-255-1022 for more information.

Charlotte County Homeless Coalition’s Driving Out Hunger Golf Scramble is Sat., Nov. 11 at Riverwood Golf & Country Club.   Registration starts at 7:30 a.m. and shotgun start is 8:30 a.m. Sponsorships available.  Call 627-4313 x 134 or email events@cchomelesscoalition.org for tickets, sponsorships and information.

Join the Charlotte County Community Services Department for “The Nature in Your Neighborhood,” a free six-part lecture/field trip series covering local wildlife and environmental habitats. The program will begin 9 a.m. at Port Charlotte Beach Park Recreation Center on the second Wednesday of the month starting Nov. 8 through May 9, 2018.  Participants will learn about local flora and fauna, visit some of Charlotte County’s beautiful parks, and gain an appreciation for the diverse wildlife and natural environments within Charlotte County. Please register by calling Marc Solomon, at 941-627-1628, ext. 103 or marc.solomon@CharlotteCountyFL.gov.      

6th Annual Twins Tot Walk on November 19, 2017 at Laishley Park, 120 Laishley Ct., Punta Gorda from 4:00pm to sunset.  Individual walkers $22.00 or sign up a team, runners and strollers welcome.  T-shirts on a first come – first served basis.   For more information print the flier http://justagainstchildrendrowning.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Big-2017.pdf or visit our website www.justagainstchildrendrowning.org or call 941-626-7106.

Gulfshore Opera presents the Gulfshore Tenors in concert performing with a jazz combo on Friday, November 17that 7:30pm at the Cultural Center Theatre in Port Charlotte.  The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation unique to SW Florida. This concert will feature some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some familiar opera favorites. Tickets are $25 per person.  Buy Tickets at www.gulfshoreopera.org or call us at 239-529-3925.

Nav-A-Gator Happenings: November 9 – Thursday, Yard Dog Charlie 6-9pm; November 9-12 the 1st Annual Trop Rock Singer/Songwriter Showcase. This event is geared towards up and coming singer/songwriters who are wanting to break into the Trop Rock music genre. Twelve musicians including Pup Morse, Jesse Rice and Yard Dog Charlie have committed to perform, but all musicians are welcome to join the fun. Prizes for top voted musicians, by the audience. For more information call 941-627-3474.

The Fine Arts Festival inspired by Picasso is happening at the Visual Arts Center in November. Events include a Luncheon & One Woman Show Nov. 10 and Sip and Paint like Picasso Nov. 15. Find all events at visualartcenter.org. Don’t miss the Main Event: A Tapas Night with tapas, sangria, live music and more Nov. 17 at 7pm. Tickets are $50. Ask us about VIP Seating! To purchase tickets, call 639-8810 or visit us at 210 Maud St in Punta Gorda.

Charlotte Symphony - November 10:  Musical Happy Hour, 4 pm.  Meet and hear Maestro Raffaele Ponti as he gives a dynamic sneak peek into each of his six scheduled concerts.  FGCU Renaissance Academy, 117 Herald Court, Punta Gorda.  Registration 941.205.5996 November 12:  CSO Concert, A Salute to our Armed Forces, 7:30 pm.  Enjoy music selections that include the melodies of each branch of the military and inspiring American compositions complete with a free preconcert dessert reception and military memorabilia for all to honor our veteran patrons.  Tickets 941.205.5996

Charlotte Players presents the second production of its 2017-2018 Langdon Playhouse Season at 1182 Market Circle, Port Charlotte. Over the River and Through the Woods, a heartwarming comedy, written by Joe Dipietro, directed by Jennifer S. Depew. The story centers around a single, Italian-American guy from NJ. His parents move to FL, leaving him behind with both sets of grandparents. Performances are November 10, 11, 16, 17, 18 at 7:30 p.m. and November 12 and 19 at 2:00 p.m. To purchase tickets: www.charlotteplayers.org or 625-4175 Ext 220. Tickets: $18 for Adults $9.00 for Students.

St. Andrews South Golf Club, the only private golf club in Charlotte County, is hosting an Open House on Saturday, November 18th from 10am – 2pm.  Tour the course and enjoy lunch “on the house”.  Join as a full golf member at the Open House and receive special incentives including: 50% off of the initiation fee; unlimited golf for a month; one year of free bag storage; 3 private golf lessons; complimentary rounds of golf for family or friends; and reciprocals with the Isles and Charlotte Harbor Yacht Clubs and 40 other area golf courses. Please call Sue for more details—639-5261 ext. 3.

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

Drug Free Punta Gorda Town Hall Meeting (Over Lunch), Tuesday, November 14, 11:30am-1:00pm. Hurricane Charley’s Raw Bar & Grill, Lunches individually purchased. Join the community conversation: Preventing Teen Marijuana Abuse in Punta Gorda. Presentation Panel: Education: CC Schools, Director of School Support Services Dr. Michael Desjardins; The Academy Principal Jack Ham; PGMS Principal Tina Dionisio; State’s Attorney’s Office: Tracy Detzel; Law Enforcement:  PGPD Corp Tony Pribble; CCSO Corp Joseph Eilerman; C.A.R.E.: Karen McElhaney; and FSW Faculty- Nursing: Barbara Kilbride. RSVP -monica.babcock@yourcharlotteschools.net  941-740-4358 

Fishermen’s Village will herald in the Holiday Season with a spectacular “Lighting of the Village” Saturday, November 18.  This celebration is the official kick off of the annual “Festival of Lights”, a display of more than one million lights.  Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a ribbon cutting with Santa and City of Punta Gorda officials. Live music, dancing and more.  Patrons are being asked to bring toilet paper, toiletries and canned goods to be donated to “Share The Blessings Ministry”, an all-volunteer, nonprofit charity benefiting those in need in Charlotte County.

The Annual Paycheck for Patriots event will be held Thursday, November 9 at CareerSource Southwest Florida, 3745 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, 9:00 am to 11:00am - Veterans only, 11:00am to 1:00pm - Open to the general public. Over 20 employers and schools will be on-site. Come dressed for an interview. Bring plenty of resumes.

The United Way of Charlotte County presents the 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration on Wed., November 15 from 5:39 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling 627-3539 or Click this link to purchase your tickets to our 4th Annual Beaujolais Celebration!

The Port Charlotte Bandits football and cheerleading teams holding car wash fundraisers from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 12, at two Charlotte State Bank & Trust Port Charlotte branch offices. The cheerleaders will be washing cars at the Parkside office, 3002 Tamiami Trail, while the football players will be doing the same at the Peachland office, 24163 Peachland Blvd. The  young athletes are requesting a $5 minimum for each car wash, but donations in any amount are welcome.

Fishermen’s Village announces a plethora of events during November!  Save these dates: Nov 11 – Peace River Car Club Car Show 10 am-2 pm; Nov 12 – Mustang Car Club Car Show 10 am-3 pm; and Nov 18 – Lighting of the Village, 5:30-9 pm

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 STILL AVAILABLE JD’s Bistro & Grill,  1951 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, FL 33948 call (941) 255-0994.

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.

Charlotte County Community Services is hosting a variety classes at Tringali Park.  Zumba meets Tuesdays at 11:30 a.m. & Saturdays at 9:00 a.m. Adult Ballet meets Mondays & Thursdays at 5:30 p.m.  Jazzercise meets every Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8:30 a.m. Yoga meets Mondays at 7 p.m. starting Nov. 6. Baking & Cooking with Debra meets Nov. 7, 14, 18, Dec. 6, 9, 12, 19, Jan. 9, 10, 16, 20, 23, 24 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information call 941-681-3742.

Upcoming Workshop at Charlotte Community Foundation - Roles and Functions of the Board – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30). This workshop will provide instruction for nonprofit board members on their roles and includes fiduciary and legal responsibilities. Attendees should include the Executive Director (or equivalent) and nonprofit Board members. Topics covered will include: Relationships and responsibilities, Conflicts of Interest, Leadership and Governance and Ethics as it relates to nonprofits, $15 per participant; includes refreshments, light snacks and materials. Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077to reserve your space.

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.

Free November CHEC programs. Call 941-475-0769 for information. November 13, 22 Guided walks through Tippecanoe II, 9 am.; November 5, 16:  Guided walks through Oyster Creek Park, 9 am; November 1:  The “Maori and Aborigine Cultures – Life at the Bottom of the World” lecture at Bayshore Live Oak Park, 10 am.; November 7, 12, 20, 28:   Guided walks through Amberjack Environmental Park, 9 am.; November10, 15, 21:  A guided walk through Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve, 9 am; November 14:  A birding walk through Tippecanoe Environmental Park,  8 am; November 18:  Guided walks during the Charlotte Harbor Nature Festival. 10:30 am, noon, 1:30 pm; November 25:  A birding walk through Amberjack,  8 am.

Gulfshore Opera - Gulfshore Tenors, Cultural Center Theatre, 7:30pm, November 17. The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation. With a repertoire of some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some fun opera hits. Tickets: $25.  If you prefer to order by phone, call the Box Office (239-529-3925) to purchase tickets between 10am -2pm. 

Tringali Park will be hosting a Super Mini Tennis Program, a 4-week introduction to tennis for children ages 4 to 6 years old. The activity will be held on Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. starting Nov. 15 through Dec. 13. The Junior Youth Tennis Program for children ages 7 to 12 years old. The activity will be held every Monday from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. starting Nov. 13 through Dec. 4. For more information contact Jill Taylor, recreation specialist, at 941-681-3742 or email Jill.Taylor@CharlotteCountyFL.gov .

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.

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.

Turkey - In The – Hole - Saturday, November 18, from 9:30 am - 3:00 pm - Gator Wilderness Camp School, 44930 Farabee Road, Punta Gorda.  Please join us for our annual Turkey In The Hole Celebration Meal & Fundraiser Auction. A time to thank our Heavenly Father for his Faithfulness!  For more information print the flier turkey in the hole or contact us at 941-639-7722.

 

Chamber Member News


Florida Power & Light is committed to enriching Florida students’ experiences in STEM education programs. These programs help break down barriers, provide more opportunities to reach traditionally underserved populations, provide candidates with skills FPL needs in the future and prepare today’s students for exciting, well-paying jobs . Among its education initiatives, FPL sponsors a traveling science show across the state as well as 70 robotics teams across its service area over the past three years, including Tarpon Robotics and Robo Mojo from Charlotte County, as well as several robotics competitions.

The Gulf Coast Partnership is a community-wide initiative to understand homelessness, identify best practices to meet the needs of the homeless and those at risk of homelessness, and to forge a community consensus. By applying for grants, we bring operational support funding to organizations in Charlotte County. These grants assist in providing emergency shelter to homeless persons; engage persons living on the street through outreach activities; provide homeless prevention and re-housing services to help those who are homeless become stably housed. For more information, visit www.gulfcoastpartnership.org

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.  

F.Y.I.  -  The Trump administration is promising a major crackdown on employers that hire undocumented immigrants.  Immigration and Customs Enforcement will "significantly increase" the number of inspections in worksite operations, according to acting ICE director, Tom Homan.  He said Homeland Security Investigations, ICE's investigative arm, could potentially quintuple its usual worksite enforcement actions next year.  *** For FCRA-compliant employment and tenancy screening services, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

Suncoast Humane Society, Meet Kelsey, a 2 yr. old Domestic Shorthair weighing 17 lbs. She has a shiny black coat and golden eyes. Kelsey is a very friendly cat who freely roams around in our cattery and introduces herself to visitors. She enjoys the company of other felines and also likes dogs. And Kelsey is a lap cat. She will make a comfy leg warmer while sharing time with you on the lanai during the coming cooler winter weather.  http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Cat-Domestic-Shorthair-36103444

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.

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.

Kudos


The Farr Law Firm was recognized in the U.S. News – Best Lawyers® 2018 “Best Law Firms” report, receiving a Tier 1 ranking for outstanding work in trusts and estates law and real estate law in the Fort Myers metro area.  Earlier in 2017 Guy S. Emerich and Jack O. Hackett II, directors at the firm, were selected by their peers for inclusion in the 2018 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America©. Emerich was recognized for his work in trusts and estates and Hackett in the practice of real estate law. For more information, please visit www.farr.com.

Craig DeYoung, president of Charlotte State Bank & Trust, announced that Sara Perri has been promoted to assistant vice president. Sara, who has managed the bank’s Charlotte Harbor office at 23112 Harborview Road since August of 2016, started a Teller Specialist at the Murdock office in 2002 and quickly rose to the position of Head Teller, helping maintain operations of the branch retail staff while managing teller operations. Sara, who will celebrate her 15th year at the bank in November, can be reached at 941-255-5235 or sperri@csbtfl.com

Job Spot


Florida SouthWestern State College has a need to hire an Adjunct Professor to teach Biology for the Spring, 2018 semester at the Charlotte Campus. The position requires a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with at least 18 graduate semester credit hours in Biology.  If you are interested in this part time, temporary opportunity, click here to apply:   https://fswsc-careers.silkroad.com/.  Join our team of adjunct faculty and inspire our students to “Dedicate to Graduate”.   FSW is an Equal Opportunity Employer

As a successful Sponsorship Sales Representative for the Charlotte Stone Crabs, you will produce corporate sponsorship sales revenues by setting appointments with regional business leaders and selling new corporate sponsorship's for the club, as well as servicing / maintaining existing sponsorship accounts.  You will report directly to the General Manager and complete in or assist in the following tasks during the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training and Charlotte Stone Crabs regular season.  Full time position.  Salary + Commission. Submit your resumé to: jcook@stonecrabsbaseball.com

Roger D. Eaton, Charlotte County, Clerk & Comptroller is recruiting for a Court Services Manager.  This is a highly responsible position overseeing the Criminal Court Services County/Circuit Felony, Misdemeanor and Civil Traffic departments which include E-filing, recording, indexing, redaction, fees and fines, collections, and records retention rules for these services.  This is a full-time Exempt position offering a full benefits package.  Experience/knowledge in Florida criminal statute laws is required.  Min pay is $22.94/hour.  For more details or to apply go to: www.Co.Charlotte.FL.US click on Employee Relations Menu, Job Listings link or email employee.relations@charlotteclerk.com

Just for fun


LINES TO MAKE YOU SMILE

Don't take life too seriously; No one gets out alive.
NyQuil, the stuffy, sneezy, why-the-heck-is-the-room-spinning medicine.
My husband and I divorced over religious differences. He thought he was God and I didn't.Ever stop to think, and forget to start again?
Being 'over the hill' is much better than being under it!
Wrinkled was not one of the things I wanted to be when I grew up.
Procrastinate Now!
I Have a Degree in Liberal Arts; Do You Want Fries With That?
A hangover is the wrath of grapes.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a cash advance.
He who dies with the most toys is nonetheless DEAD.
A picture is worth a thousand words, but it uses up three thousand times the memory.
Ham and eggs...A day's work for a chicken, a lifetime commitment for a pig.
The trouble with life is there's no background music.

 

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
941-639-2222
jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org

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Charlotte Sun Column - November 1, 2017

      Grab your soon to be replaced 2017 calendar and mark down some great networking opportunities, starting with the Nov. 8 Networking at Noon at the Burg’r Bar, 317 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda.  Please make a reservation and select your food choice in the Chamber store or by calling 627-2222.

     The public is invited to attend our 21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays during the Nov. 15 Third Wednesday Coffee.  Members will decorate the tables with a holiday theme and many will have give-a-ways and yummies as they showcase their products and services.  Please join us from 7:15 to 8:30 a.m. at the Event Center and get some ideas for your holiday shopping list.

     The Nov. Business Card Exchange is a Nov. 16 at Busey Bank in Port Charlotte.

     The “Lighting of the Village” is Sat., Nov. 18, starting at 5:30 p.m. at Fishermen’s Village.  The annual Downtown Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting, with music, Santa, snow showers and more, will be held on Fri., Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. in the City Marketplace property.  Punta Gorda Founders’ Week will be celebrated December 1 through December 7 with lots of fun and educational events.  Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a complete schedule of events

     Our 39th Annual Christmas Parade is Sat., Dec. 9.  We’ll step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center (next to Charlotte High), head north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  The reviewing stand will be in front of Centennial Bank.   For more information, please visit our website or call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222.

     And, two of my favorites are in November, the fifth annual Comedy for a Cause fundraiser, postponed due to Irma, will be held on Thurs., Nov. 9, when eight area business leaders will perform improvisation comedy. Tickets may be purchased by calling 941-255-1022.  The United Way of Charlotte County’s 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration is on Wed., November 15 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling me or 627-3539.

     Rabbit, rabbit!

Business OnLine - October 30, 2017

From the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce


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

Serving all of Charlotte County for more than 91 years


October 30, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events:


Wed., Nov. 8, Networking at Noon, Burg’r Bar, 317 Tamiami Trail, PG.  Please make a reservation and food selection online Chamber Store or by calling 627-2222.

Wed., Nov. 15, 7:15 to 8:30 a.m., Third Wednesday Coffee, Holiday Celebration.  Decorate a table with a holiday theme and promote your products and services.  Register online or call the Port Charlotte office.

Thurs., Nov. 16, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Busey Bank, 1490 Tamiami Trail, PC

General Information


21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays, in conjunction with the Third Wednesday Coffee, November 15, at the Event Center.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme.  Special recognition will be given for the most creative, most unusual and most attractive holiday business displays.  For more information print the Holiday Celebration 2017 flier.

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.

Enjoy the 2nd Annual Palate Pleasures Restaurant Week.  Visit the following for details. https://puntagordachamber.com/palate-pleasures-restaurant-week/

The 2017 North Port Real Estate Summit information - Here is the link to register: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/city-of-north-port-real-estate-summit-tickets-38597060848  Password: RE Summit

SBA Loans, FEMA Aid Available for Seawall Repair - The Small Business Administration will be accepting applications for loans to property owners through Nov. 9. Loans are available for all property repairs, including seawalls. The first step of the process is to register with FEMA online at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362. Loan applications can be found at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela, or via phone 800-659-2955.

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

Office of Congressman Tom Rooney mobile office hours Thursday, November 2nd at the Punta Gorda District Office, 226 Taylor St, Ste. 230, Punta Gorda, FL 33950 Open from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  Reach out to my office anytime at 202-225-5792, visit my Facebook page and sign up for my e-newsletter to receive these regular updates. During mobile office hours, caseworkers from my office will be on hand to help with any trouble you may be having with a federal agency. My caseworkers cannot assist with state or local issues, or problems with private companies. It’s an honor to serve you in Washington, DC. 

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., Oct. 30, noon, Visual Arts Center, 210 Maud St., PG

Thurs., Nov. 2, 5:30 p.m., Ashley Home Store at Bacon’s Furniture, 17701 Murdock Cir., PC 

Tues., Nov. 14, 5:30 p.m., H & R Block, 2150 Tamiami Trail, Suite12, PC

Wed., Nov. 15 during the Holiday Celebration, Peace River Sail and Power Squadron

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

New Members


Time HR Payroll Solutions, 115 W. Olympia Ave., PG 33950
James Kubek, Stacey Law Ph: 941-637-1106,
www.timefl.com  staceyl@timefl.com
                                                                                 


Jim & Cathy Getz, 122 Berry St., PG 33950
Ph: 239-989-5142  getzjamesr@gmail.com

Chamber Member Events


On Nov. 1, 2017, Charlotte Technical College is hosting a Job Fair for our students from 8:45-Noon. The public will also be welcome at this event. If you are interested in meeting some great candidates please fill out the attached exhibitor application. This is a free event for you and the applicants.  To apply as a vendor please click on the link, answer the questions, and click submit. Since we offer 20+ programs at Charlotte Technical College we are looking for a nice balance of opportunities for our students.  https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=bxIkr2vseEK8_Wh_IJhw1gk-vmBQSjlLoYoLOneMntBUNzQxVEFJN05XUjU4U0NXU01KNFhEUFo2Wi4u

Charlotte Community Foundation - Strategic Planning Workshop (2 Thursdays) – November 2 and November 9 (9:00 – 11:30) , $30, and Roles and Functions of the Nonprofit Board ($15) – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30 a.m.). These workshops will be led by Dr. Robert (Bob) Peterson, a local resident and CCF Board Member, with over 30 years of international consulting firm experience following a successful career in higher education and business management. Includes refreshments, light snacks and materials. Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077 to reserve your space.

Higher Ground Performing Arts will be presenting an Urban Dance Experience! A Hip Hop Dance Workshop with 3 hrs of non-stop, high energy, dynamic and elevating Hip Hop choreography from HG's Rolando Cabrera, Kathleen Candales and Katrina Candales. The Event will take place November 3rd 2017 from 5:30-8:30pm. All Levels. Ages 10 and up. Only $35. Single class $15. Observers $10. Community Life Center * 19048 Edgewater Drive * Port Charlotte. Registration starts @ 4:45pm. Warm up @ 5:15pm. To register or for more information visit http://highergroundperformingarts.net/events-tickets.

Harvest of Art now on display at the Visual Arts Center – exhibits are always free and open to the public. Help us kick off the Fine Arts Festival at the ribbon cutting Oct. 30 at 12pm, stay to have lunch at the J&K Mobile Café! Also a book discussion, Storytime for kids and movie night happening next week, all for the Fine Arts Festival! For dates & times visit www.visualartcenter.org. Located across from Fishermen's Village @ 210 Maud St, Punta Gorda. Gallery & Gift Shop Hours: M-F, 9-4 & Sat, 10-2.

Finding yourself in a healthcare crisis without means to afford it can be terrifying. Fortunately, in Charlotte County, we can go to the Virginia B Andes Volunteer Community Clinic, the "Free Clinic," for excellent episodic care and pharmacy. Support for the ‘Free Clinic’ does not come from government! They rely on grants and donations. Country for a Cause, Nov 3, is a FUNdraising gala for the Clinic. You can have a little down-home fun, with live music and food, while supporting this local nonprofit. For more info & tickets: www.volunteercare.org

Heron Creek Golf & Country Club special through November 15 - Book our $49 Golf Special after 12:30 which includes a $10 Credit with the Beverage Cart. Tee Times for this special are filling fast! Call the Pro Shop today, 941-423-6913

Temple Shalom, 23190 Utica Ave. Port Charlotte, is delighted to offer the community the “Five Cantors in Concert” on Sunday, November 5th at 4:00 pm.  Tuesday, November 7th at 7:00 pm we will have a presentation the “Story Behind the Balfour Declaration (100th anniversary of the famous letter). From Wikipedia  "The Balfour Declaration was a public statement issued by the British government during World War I announcing support for the establishment of a "national home for the Jewish people" in Palestine. There is no charge to attend either event.

6th Annual Twins Tot Walk on November 19, 2017 at Laishley Park, 120 Laishley Ct., Punta Gorda from 4:00pm to sunset.  Individual walkers $22.00 or sign up a team, runners and strollers welcome.  T-shirts on a first come – first served basis.   For more information print the flier http://justagainstchildrendrowning.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Big-2017.pdf or visit our website www.justagainstchildrendrowning.org or call 941-626-7106.

Gulfshore Opera presents the Gulfshore Tenors in concert performing with a jazz combo on Friday, November 17that 7:30pm at the Cultural Center Theatre in Port Charlotte.  The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation unique to SW Florida. This concert will feature some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some familiar opera favorites. Tickets are $25 per person.  Buy Tickets at www.gulfshoreopera.org or call us at 239-529-3925.

St. Andrews South Golf Club, the only private golf club in Charlotte County, is hosting an Open House on Saturday, November 18th from 10am – 2pm.  Tour the course and enjoy lunch “on the house”.  Join as a full golf member at the Open House and receive special incentives including: 50% off of the initiation fee; unlimited golf for a month; one year of free bag storage; 3 private golf lessons; complimentary rounds of golf for family or friends; and reciprocals with the Isles and Charlotte Harbor Yacht Clubs and 40 other area golf courses. Please call Sue for more details—639-5261 ext. 3.

Key November events at Punta Gorda Isles Civic Association.  Call 941-637-1655 or go to http://pgica.org for more information. Sandwich Seminar: Medicare Made Simple –Thursday, November 2, 7 p.m. Review all parts and options of Medicare from Part A to Part D, Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) Plans A through N. Preregister.  GI Health Symposium: Tuesday, November 14, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.  with guest speaker John Rioux, MD, General Surgeon. Sponsored by Fawcett Memorial Hospital. Preregister.  Tuesday, November 21, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aging vs. The Onset of Alzheimer’s Disease. Preregister. 

Gilded Grape Winery and Wine Bar, 4069 Tamiami Trail Port Charlotte, 941-235-WINE (9463).   November 1, 7 to 10:00 pm ,  “Karaoke”  with Jeannie Smyth; November 3, 5:30 to 8:00pm, J&K’s Mobile Café and 7:00 to 10:00pm  “Walk Down Memory Lane”  with Sandy Forbes; November 4, 7:00 to 10:00pm,  Karaoke with Tom Lloyd; November 17, 4:30 to 6:30pm, “Wine Glass Painting”. 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.  www.gildedgrape.com

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

Drug Free Punta Gorda Town Hall Meeting (Over Lunch), Tuesday, November 14, 11:30am-1:00pm. Hurricane Charley’s Raw Bar & Grill, Lunches individually purchased. Join the community conversation: Preventing Teen Marijuana Abuse in Punta Gorda. Presentation Panel: Education: CC Schools, Director of School Support Services Dr. Michael Desjardins; The Academy Principal Jack Ham; PGMS Principal Tina Dionisio; State’s Attorney’s Office: Tracy Detzel; Law Enforcement:  PGPD Corp Tony Pribble; CCSO Corp Joseph Eilerman; C.A.R.E.: Karen McElhaney; and FSW Faculty- Nursing: Barbara Kilbride. RSVP -monica.babcock@yourcharlotteschools.net  941-740-4358 

BB&T- Oswald Trippe and Company announces the five finalists for the annual Blue Chip Community Business Award. The final five businesses, who are chosen by an independent panel of judges, will be recognized at the award ceremony luncheon on Thursday, Nov. 2 at a new location, Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa (5001 Coconut Rd., Bonita Springs), and one will be designated as the Blue Chip Award winner. The five businesses are: Adventures in Paradise, Davidson Irrigation, Misty’s Sunshine Cleaning Service, Siesta Pebble, and Sunshine Workforce.

Fishermen’s Village announces a plethora of events during November!  Save these dates:  Nov 4 – Coldwell Banker Sunstar Adopt-A-Pet Day 9 am -1 pm; Nov 11 – Peace River Car Club Car Show 10 am-2 pm; Nov 12 – Mustang Car Club Car Show 10 am-3 pm; and Nov 18 – Lighting of the Village, 5:30-9 pm

Fishermen’s Village will herald in the Holiday Season with a spectacular “Lighting of the Village” Saturday, November 18.  This celebration is the official kick off of the annual “Festival of Lights”, a display of more than one million lights.  Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a ribbon cutting with Santa and City of Punta Gorda officials. Live music, dancing and more.  Patrons are being asked to bring toilet paper, toiletries and canned goods to be donated to “Share The Blessings Ministry”, an all-volunteer, nonprofit charity benefiting those in need in Charlotte County.

The Phantoms of the Orchestra, a volunteer group which supports the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, is holding its Composer’s Luncheon on Thursday, November 2, 2017 from 12:00 noon until 1:00 p.m. The luncheon will be held at the Punta Gorda Woman’s Club, 118 Sullivan Street, and is open to the public. The luncheon program will focus on composer John Williams. The cost is $15.00 which includes a complimentary glass of wine. Reservations are required and may be made by calling the Symphony Office at 941-205-9743 by Tuesday noon, October 31st.\

Nav-A-Gator Happenings - November 4 – Saturday, John Whiteleather Band 2-5pm; November 5 – Saturday , Charlie Imes 2-5pm. Cover charge canned goods and nonperishable food items that are donated to local Hurricane Irma victims

The Annual Paycheck for Patriots event will be held Thursday, November 9 at CareerSource Southwest Florida, 3745 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, 9:00 am to 11:00am - Veterans only, 11:00am to 1:00pm - Open to the general public. Over 20 employers and schools will be on-site. Come dressed for an interview. Bring plenty of resumes.

The United Way of Charlotte County presents the 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration on Wed., November 15 from 5:39 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling 627-3539 or Click this link to purchase your tickets to our 4th Annual Beaujolais Celebration!

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.

Upcoming Workshops for Nonprofit Organizations Strategic Planning Workshop (2 Thursdays) – November 2 and November 9 (9:00 – 11:30) Roles and Functions of the Nonprofit Board – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30 a.m.). These workshops will be led by Dr. Robert (Bob) Peterson, a local resident and Charlotte Community Foundation Board Member with over 30 years of international consulting firm experience following a successful career in higher education and business management.  Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077 to reserve your space.

 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.

Free November CHEC programs. Call 941-475-0769 for information. November 13, 22 Guided walks through Tippecanoe II, 9 am.; November 5, 16:  Guided walks through Oyster Creek Park, 9 am; November 1:  The “Maori and Aborigine Cultures – Life at the Bottom of the World” lecture at Bayshore Live Oak Park, 10 am.; November 7, 12, 20, 28:   Guided walks through Amberjack Environmental Park, 9 am.; November10, 15, 21:  A guided walk through Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve, 9 am; November 14:  A birding walk through Tippecanoe Environmental Park,  8 am; November 18:  Guided walks during the Charlotte Harbor Nature Festival. 10:30 am, noon, 1:30 pm; November 25:  A birding walk through Amberjack,  8 am.

Gulfshore Opera - Gulfshore Tenors, Cultural Center Theatre, 7:30pm, November 17. The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation. With a repertoire of some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some fun opera hits. Tickets: $25.  If you prefer to order by phone, call the Box Office (239-529-3925) to purchase tickets between 10am -2pm. 

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.

In conjunction with Punta Gorda Founders’ Week, the annual Punta Gorda History Center Southern Supper will honor 10 new entrants to the Punta Gorda History Center Hall of Honor.  A full traditional Punta Gorda style southern supper will be served at Hurricane Charley’s in Punta Gorda at 5 p.m.  For more information or tickets ($55) call (941)258-2080 or email puntagordahistorycenter@gmail.com.

You are invited to Country for a Cause 2017, hosted by Virginia B Andes Volunteer Community Clinic on Friday, November 3, 6-10 pm, at the Charlotte County Fairgrounds Expo Hall (2333 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte). Enjoy the Ben Allen Band, country cookin’, cash bar and a live auction. VIP and General Admission tickets available online www.volunteercare.org/country or call Robin at 941-276-1668. Proceeds benefits the patients at the Clinic and Pharmacy.

Postponed by Hurricane Irma, the fifth annual Comedy for a Cause fundraiser will be held on Thursday, Nov. 9, at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, Punta Gorda. All previously distributed sponsor, VIP and show-only tickets will be honored on the new date, when eight area business leaders will perform improvisation comedy under the direction of Charlotte County Commissioner Dr. Chris Constance. Tickets may be purchased at www.comedy4acause.net. Donations in cast members’ names may also be made that site as well as www.crowdrise.com/fifthAnnualComedyforaCause. Call 941-255-1022 for more information.

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.

Chamber Member News


The Gulf Coast Partnership is a community-wide initiative to understand homelessness, identify best practices to meet the needs of the homeless and those at risk of homelessness, and to forge a community consensus. By applying for grants, we bring operational support funding to organizations in Charlotte County. These grants assist in providing emergency shelter to homeless persons; engage persons living on the street through outreach activities; provide homeless prevention and re-housing services to help those who are homeless become stably housed. For more information, visit www.gulfcoastpartnership.org

CeJay Associates, LLC website spotlight is www.puntagordaha.org  - An updated look for the Housing Authority with more accessible information and announcements that are automatically scheduled to show/hide. Let CeJay Associates update your online presence with an easy-to-manage WordPress site. We can also manage your social media, newsletters, branding and business graphics.  Together, we can make your Internet marketing strategy WORK for you, taking your business or organization to the next level of success! Contact CeJay Associates at 941-204-0007 * www.CeJayAssoc.com  * Design@CeJay.com

We are having a special for Halloween - 50% off Tealight Special online only through Oct 30 Enter code Halloween. www.Partylite.biz/nadiascandles, 312-286-2885. Nadia Mamczij, Independent Consultant.

Even with low 4.3% unemployment, CareerBuilder says most American workers still struggle financially. More than three out of four workers say they live paycheck-to-paycheck.  Three out of four say they are in debt and half think they always will be.  More than one out of four workers say they are unable to set aside savings each month.  And more than half of minimum wage workers have to work multiple jobs to make ends meet.   **For FCRA-compliant employment and tenancy screening, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

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.

Suncoast Humane Society meet Zeus, a 2 yr. old Lab/Aussie Shepherd Mix weighing 55 lbs. Zeus walks very well on a leash and rides well in a car (once he’s loaded in!). He is comfortable in the company of adults and children. Though he’s not lived with children, he has been with them during Dog About Town outings and he was very receptive towards their attention. He also enjoys going to a dog park and playing with other large breed dogs. Zeus is a great companion dog and handsome as well! http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Dog-Retriever-Labrador-36180939

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.

Job Spot


Florida SouthWestern State College has a need to hire an Adjunct Professor to teach Biology for the Spring, 2018 semester at the Charlotte Campus. The position requires a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with at least 18 graduate semester credit hours in Biology.  If you are interested in this part time, temporary opportunity, click here to apply:   https://fswsc-careers.silkroad.com/.  Join our team of adjunct faculty and inspire our students to “Dedicate to Graduate”.   FSW is an Equal Opportunity Employer

As a successful Sponsorship Sales Representative for the Charlotte Stone Crabs, you will produce corporate sponsorship sales revenues by setting appointments with regional business leaders and selling new corporate sponsorship's for the club, as well as servicing / maintaining existing sponsorship accounts.  You will report directly to the General Manager and complete in or assist in the following tasks during the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training and Charlotte Stone Crabs regular season.  Full time position.  Salary + Commission. Submit your resumé to: jcook@stonecrabsbaseball.com

Roger D. Eaton, Charlotte County, Clerk & Comptroller is recruiting for a Court Services Manager.  This is a highly responsible position overseeing the Criminal Court Services County/Circuit Felony, Misdemeanor and Civil Traffic departments which include E-filing, recording, indexing, redaction, fees and fines, collections, and records retention rules for these services.  This is a full-time Exempt position offering a full benefits package.  Experience/knowledge in Florida criminal statute laws is required.  Min pay is $22.94/hour.  For more details or to apply go to: www.Co.Charlotte.FL.US click on Employee Relations Menu, Job Listings link or email employee.relations@charlotteclerk.com

Just for fun


I just want to thank all of you for your educational e-mails over the past year. I am totally screwed up now and have little chance of recovery

I no longer open a public bathroom door without using a paper towel or have them put lemon slices in my ice water without worrying about the bacteria on the lemon peel.

I have trouble shaking hands with someone who has been driving because the number one pastime while driving alone is picking ones nose.

Eating a little snack sends me on a guilt trip because I can only imagine how many gallons of Trans fats I have consumed over the years

I must send special thanks to whoever sent me the one about poop in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet sponge with every envelope that needs sealing. Also, now I have to scrub the top of every can I open for the same reason.

I no longer worry about my soul because I have 363,214 angels looking out for me, and St. Theresa's Novena has granted my every wish.

I no longer use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell like a water buffalo on a hot day.

Thanks to you I have learned that my prayers only get answered if I forward an e-mail to seven of my friends and make a wish within five minutes.

I no longer can buy gasoline without taking someone along to watch the car so a serial killer won't crawl in my back seat when I'm pumping gas.

I no longer answer the phone because someone will ask me to dial a number for which I will get a phone bill with calls to Jamaica , Uganda, Singapore, and Uzbekistan

And, thanks to your advice, I can't ever pick up $5.00 dropped in the parking lot because it probably was placed there by a sex molester waiting underneath my car to grab my leg.

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
941-639-2222
jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org

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Charlotte Sun Column - October 25, 2017

     Tomorrow night is the Business Card Exchange, hosted by the Gustitus team at Keller Williams Peace River Partners.  Please join us at 1032 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte and bring plenty of business cards to hand out and a small gift to promote your business for additional name and face recognition.

     November will be a busy month as we move a few networking events around due to the start of the holiday season.  Nov. 8 is Networking at Noon at the Burg’r Bar, 317 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda.  Please make a reservation in the Chamber store or by calling 627-2222.  Seating is limited and we’d hate to have to tell you, sorry, no room.

     During the Nov. 15 Third Wednesday Coffee, we’re holding our 21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme for $20 ($10 for non-profits).  The public is invited to attend what is always a festive early morning few hours.   

     The Nov. Business Card exchange is a Nov. 16 at Busey Bank in Port Charlotte.

     And, mark your calendars for Fishermen’s Village spectacular “Lighting of the Village” Saturday, November 18, starting at 5:30 p.m. The annual Downtown Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting, a holiday tradition of music, Santa, snow showers and authentic family fun, will be held on Fri., Dec. 1. The festivities kick off at 5 p.m. on the former City Marketplace property. On the 130th anniversary of the City, Punta Gorda Founders’ Week will be celebrated December 1 through December 7 with lots of fun and educational events.  Visit www.puntagordafoundersweek.com for a complete schedule of events

     Our 39th Annual Christmas Parade is Sat., Dec. 9.  We’ll step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center (next to Charlotte High), head north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  The reviewing stand will be in front of Centennial Bank.   For more information, please visit our website or call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222.

     Would you like receive more recognition by hearing your name and the name of your business announced at Chamber events and wearing a yellow ribbon?  Consider joining ChamberACTION, a group of members whose mission is to assist in the recruitment and retention of members?  Please call Bob White at 627-2222 for all the details on another way to promote your business throughout the community.

Business OnLine - October 23, 2017

From the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce


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

Serving all of Charlotte County for more than 92 years

October 23, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events:


Thurs., Oct. 26, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Tony & Rhonda Gustitus Team, Keller Williams Peace River Partners, 1032 Tamiami Trail, PC

General Information


21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays, in conjunction with the Third Wednesday Coffee, November 15, at the Event Center.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme.  Special recognition will be given for the most creative, most unusual and most attractive holiday business displays.  For more information print the Holiday Celebration 2017 flier.

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.

In November, 2018 you will have the opportunity to vote for additional funding to cover school operating expenses. Charlotte County Public Schools wants to hear what you think funding priorities should be.  Please help us gather input by clicking the link below for a short survey. Referendum Interest Survey

Enjoy the 2nd Annual Palate Pleasures Restaurant Week.  Visit the following for details. https://puntagordachamber.com/palate-pleasures-restaurant-week/

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):


Wed., Oct. 25, 5:30 p.m., Parkside Assisted Living and Memory Cottage, 2595 Harbor Blvd., PC

Mon., Oct. 30, noon, Visual Arts Center, 210 Maud St., PG

New Members


Vietnam Wall of Southwest Florida, Inc.
PO Box 494186, PC 33949-4186, 200 Harbor Walk Drive, PG 33950
General Dick Carr, Stacy Jones, Ph: 941-763-9235


www.vietnamwallofsouthwestflorida.org  dickc59@embarqmail.com

Alan T. Lane, 11025 Bristol Bay Drive, #711, Bradenton  34209
Ph: 804-334-7922 www.1031strategies.com  protaxincentives@gmail.com      
Sponsor: Sue Howell, Mom CEO


Tammy Hayes, RE/MAX Palm Realty, 1808 Tamiami Trail #D2, PC 33948
Ph: 941-276-6185  www.tammyhayes.remaxagent.com  tammyhayesre@gmail.com
Sponsor: Peter Rivera, RE/MAX Palm Realty

Chamber Member Events


Scotty’s Brewhouse proudly presents “Rocky Horror Picture Show” on Saturday October 28, starting at 10pm.  Interactive ADULT Show. Costume Contest and Drink Specials, Draft Beer “Dark o’ the Moon” Elysian Brewing. Vampire Shots. Pumpkin Pie Martinis, Come out and participate and have a great time. Let’s Do The Time Warp again.

 FGCU Continuing Education Presents: The Symphony Orchestra as a Business Model. This 6-session program developed by Raffaele Ponti demonstrates how The Symphony Orchestra is a perfect Business Model that can inspire, redefine and fine-tune any business. Participants will have the opportunity to physically sit in the orchestra during a working rehearsal at the Charlotte Performing Arts Center, 9:00am – 12:00pm, Saturdays, Nov. 11, Dec.2, 2017, Jan. 13, Feb. 24, Mar. 17, Apr. 7, 2018.  Chamber members get a 20% discount ($115).  Use code HC1636CC when you call 941-505-0130 to register.  FGCU Cont Ed Presents Ponti

On Nov. 1, 2017, Charlotte Technical College is hosting a Job Fair for our students from 8:45-Noon. The public will also be welcome at this event. If you are interested in meeting some great candidates please fill out the attached exhibitor application. This is a free event for you and the applicants.  To apply as a vendor please click on the link, answer the questions, and click submit. Since we offer 20+ programs at Charlotte Technical College we are looking for a nice balance of opportunities for our students.  https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=bxIkr2vseEK8_Wh_IJhw1gk-vmBQSjlLoYoLOneMntBUNzQxVEFJN05XUjU4U0NXU01KNFhEUFo2Wi4u

St. Andrews South Golf Club, the only private golf club in Charlotte County, is hosting an Open House on Saturday, November 18th from 10am – 2pm.  Tour the course and enjoy lunch “on the house”.  Join as a full golf member at the Open House and receive special incentives including: 50% off of the initiation fee; unlimited golf for a month; one year of free bag storage; 3 private golf lessons; complimentary rounds of golf for family or friends; and reciprocals with the Isles and Charlotte Harbor Yacht Clubs and 40 other area golf courses. Please call Sue for more details—639-5261 ext. 3.

Please join us at T.T.’s Tiki Bar located on the waterfront of the Four Points by Sheraton.  On Wednesday from 6-9 PM, we have Andy G Duo, Thursday will feature Score Duo, on Friday we have Tropical Avenue, Saturday we bring back local favorite Jukebox Prophet, and on Sunday we have Cap’n Rick.  Also, please stop inside the hotel at our Dockside Grill to meet our new chef and try his new menu that is getting rave reviews.  The Tiki Bar…..The Place To Be!

Try your hand at creating unique designs to keep or share. Sign up for our Wine and Design class.  Register online for a daytime or an evening class.  Spooky Halloween BOO-quet on Tuesday, October 24, 6 to 8p.m. or Thursday, October 26, 10a.m. to noon.  All classes are held at Port Charlotte Florist, 900 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte. Call 941-627-2236 if you have any questions and to sign up.   Glass of wine, light snacks, and all design supplies are included. Class size is limited and payment is non-refundable

Attention all high school students and adults returning to school. Presented by Charlotte County Community Services, FASFA Informational Presentation walks through the step-by-step process of preparing and applying for federal student aid (FASFA), October 25, 2017, 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Charlotte Community Foundation, 227 Sullivan Street, Punta Gorda, FL  33950, 941-637-0077.

Fishermen’s Village will herald in the Holiday Season with a spectacular “Lighting of the Village” Saturday, November 18.  This celebration is the official kick off of the annual “Festival of Lights”, a display of more than one million lights.  Festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with a ribbon cutting with Santa and City of Punta Gorda officials. Live music, dancing and more.  Patrons are being asked to bring toilet paper, toiletries and canned goods to be donated to “Share The Blessings Ministry”, an all-volunteer, nonprofit charity benefiting those in need in Charlotte County.

AWA Investments invites you to join them for a catered dinner on Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. for a Dinner & Learn on Social Security – Everything You Didn’t Know to Ask - at their office at 21942 Edgewater Dr., Port Charlotte.   Please RSVP to 206-6200 or jenifer.wise@lpllpl.com

BB&T- Oswald Trippe and Company announces the five finalists for the annual Blue Chip Community Business Award. The final five businesses, who are chosen by an independent panel of judges, will be recognized at the award ceremony luncheon on Thursday, Nov. 2 at a new location, Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa (5001 Coconut Rd., Bonita Springs), and one will be designated as the Blue Chip Award winner. The five businesses are: Adventures in Paradise, Davidson Irrigation, Misty’s Sunshine Cleaning Service, Siesta Pebble, and Sunshine Workforce.

The Phantoms of the Orchestra, a volunteer group which supports the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, is holding its Composer’s Luncheon on Thursday, November 2, 2017 from 12:00 noon until 1:00 p.m. The luncheon will be held at the Punta Gorda Woman’s Club, 118 Sullivan Street, and is open to the public. The luncheon program will focus on composer John Williams. The cost is $15.00 which includes a complimentary glass of wine. Reservations are required and may be made by calling the Symphony Office at 941-205-9743 by Tuesday noon, October 31st.

Tiki Tom Entertainment for your Holiday Event. Call for dates and availability- 239-314-6808. Appearing this week Wednesday 6-9p at Wyvern Hotel and Fishermen’s Village Saturday 5-9p www.tikitom.com

The Annual Paycheck for Patriots event will be held Thursday, November 9 at CareerSource Southwest Florida, 3745 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte, 9:00 am to 11:00am - Veterans only, 11:00am to 1:00pm - Open to the general public. Over 20 employers and schools will be on-site. Come dressed for an interview. Bring plenty of resumes.

Join Kate Borduas, Florida Master Naturalist and World Traveler, at a lecture, "The Maori & Aborigine Cultures - Life at the Bottom of the World", at Bayshore Live Oak Park on November 1 at 10:00 am.  Kate will explore the differences between the historic Maori and Aborigine societies and the possible implications once the modern world descends upon them.  This free program is made available in cooperation with Charlotte County Parks & Natural Resources, and is coordinated by the Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center (CHEC).  For information and/registration, call 941-475-0769.

Gilded Grape Winery and Wine Bar, 4069 Tamiami Trail Port Charlotte, 941-235-WINE (9463).  Wednesday,  October 25,  7 – 10pm ,  “Karaoke”  with Tom Lloyd; Friday, October 27,  7:00 to 10:00pm, Mark Dupuy, playing various instruments and vocals and Saturday,  October 28,  7:00 to 10:00pm,  Jeannie Smyth, 

The Wine Bar offers a global selection of wines by the glass or by the bottle, made on-site, and a variety of beer and craft beers.  Hours are Tues & Thurs 12 noon-6pm,  Wednesday, Friday - Saturday 12:00noon to 10:00pm.  www.gildedgrape.com.

Join us for our Grand Opening weekend October 27th - 29th! We will have a Kick-Off Party on Friday, October 27th with live music and food from 5-7pm.  Tour the property, see our Villas under construction, walk our 485’ fishing pier & spend time with our sales team learning about the Newest & Best-Priced Waterfront Condos & Villas in Southwest Florida.  Head to Harborside El Jobean Beach & Yacht Club, 14550 River Beach Drive in Port Charlotte, just a few miles from the Charlotte Sports Park off 776! 

Dr. Laura Korman is a chiropractic physician, as well as a diplomate in nutrition, and has been developing a new program called GEARED2bewell, which focuses on living a ketogenic lifestyle.   This lifestyle is beneficial for so many reasons--improved brain function and memory, clarity of mind, decreased pain and inflammation, increased energy, better digestion, balanced blood sugar levels, and more. Visit www.cleanandketo.com and click on the "GEARED2bewell" tab.  Free Seminar, Saturday, October 28th, on weight loss and discussing her GEARED2bewell program. RSVP:   941-629-6700    

The United Way of Charlotte County presents the 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration on Wed., November 15 from 5:39 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling 627-3539 or Click this link to purchase your tickets to our 4th Annual Beaujolais Celebration!

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.

Upcoming Workshops for Nonprofit Organizations Strategic Planning Workshop (2 Thursdays) – November 2 and November 9 (9:00 – 11:30) Roles and Functions of the Nonprofit Board – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30 a.m.). These workshops will be led by Dr. Robert (Bob) Peterson, a local resident and Charlotte Community Foundation Board Member with over 30 years of international consulting firm experience following a successful career in higher education and business management.  Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077 to reserve your space.

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.

Free exhibits Color and Art with Meaning now on display at the Visual Arts Center, featuring a fantastic selection of original art for sale. Join us for Create & Paint nights (fun with wine & painting) every Wed. at 6pm in October - To purchase tickets call the PG Chamber (941) 639-3720. The Visual Arts Center is located @ 210 Maud St, across from Fishermen's Village. Gallery & Gift Shop Hours: M-F, 9-4 & Sat, 10-2. For more info on upcoming classes, exhibits & events, visit www.visualartcenter.org.

Please join us for our annual Young Life Golf Tournament, held at Heron Creek Golf Course on Saturday, Oct. 28th. Young Life is a non-denominational, international Christian outreach for teenagers. Its purpose is to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ.  So come and join us for a great day of golf, friendly competition, good food, and fun and prizes…all while supporting a great cause! Register online at www.charlotteharbor.younglife.org or contact Tom Parker (Leadership Charlotte 2017) at 941.456.5433.

Free November CHEC programs. Call 941-475-0769 for information. November 13, 22 Guided walks through Tippecanoe II, 9 am.; November 5, 16:  Guided walks through Oyster Creek Park, 9 am; November 1:  The “Maori and Aborigine Cultures – Life at the Bottom of the World” lecture at Bayshore Live Oak Park, 10 am.; November 7, 12, 20, 28:   Guided walks through Amberjack Environmental Park, 9 am.; November10, 15, 21:  A guided walk through Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve, 9 am; November 14:  A birding walk through Tippecanoe Environmental Park,  8 am; November 18:  Guided walks during the Charlotte Harbor Nature Festival. 10:30 am, noon, 1:30 pm; November 25:  A birding walk through Amberjack,  8 am.

Key events at Punta Gorda Isles Civic Association; call 941-637-1655 or go to http://pgica.org for more information. The Big Red Bus: PGICA’s parking lot Friday, October 27th from 11 am -3:00 pm. Medicare Made Simple: Three identical classes at 7:00 pm in Room 1 on October 17, October 24, and November 2. Review Medicare Parts A to D, Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) Plans A to N, trade-offs between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage, and how-when-why to consider changing Plans. Contact Ralph Temple at 941-286-6047 for more information.

Gulfshore Opera - Gulfshore Tenors, Cultural Center Theatre, 7:30pm, November 17. The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation. With a repertoire of some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some fun opera hits. Tickets: $25.  If you prefer to order by phone, call the Box Office (239-529-3925) to purchase tickets between 10am -2pm. 

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.

Fishermen’s Village announces the addition of a new signature event “Throwback to the 50’s!” to be held Saturday, October 28, 2017, 12 Noon-4 pm.    Live entertainment will be featured in all three sections of the Village: • “Boomers Band” –golden oldies,   rock ‘n roll, Motown, Blues and more! • Nick Dattilo and The Legends Band – tribute to Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison, Ritchie Valens, The Beach Boys • The “Just Us Duo” – 50’s, 60’s, light country, classic rock and Big Band. Come dressed in attire from the 50’s and 60’s and join the fun!  Admission and parking are free. 

Bayfront Health Port Charlotte is offering a special to women for October, which is annually recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. During the month, Bayfront Health is offering a digital mammo screening for $65. And, women are invited to attend a Pink Party Thursday, October 12 or Wednesday, October 25.  Bayfront Health’s Pink Parties will be held at Bayfront Health Port Charlotte on Thursday, October 12 or Wednesday, October 25, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. women can get their mammogram along with some well-deserved pampering. Mammo appointments and reservation is required by calling 941-766-4321.

In conjunction with Punta Gorda Founders’ Week, the annual Punta Gorda History Center Southern Supper will honor 10 new entrants to the Punta Gorda History Center Hall of Honor.  A full traditional Punta Gorda style southern supper will be served at Hurricane Charley’s in Punta Gorda at 5 p.m.  For more information or tickets ($55) call (941)258-2080 or email puntagordahistorycenter@gmail.com.

You are invited to Country for a Cause 2017, hosted by Virginia B Andes Volunteer Community Clinic on Friday, November 3, 6-10 pm, at the Charlotte County Fairgrounds Expo Hall (2333 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte). Enjoy the Ben Allen Band, country cookin’, cash bar and a live auction. VIP and General Admission tickets available online www.volunteercare.org/country or call Robin at 941-276-1668. Proceeds benefits the patients at the Clinic and Pharmacy.

The Charlotte Harbor and Punta Gorda Community Redevelopment Agencies and title sponsor Waste Management invite residents to participate in the 10th Annual Hands Across the Harbor Half Marathon Bridge Run, Ride, and Roll. The event will be on January 27, 2018 and features a half marathon, 5k competitive run, 13.1 mile competitive IDSA sanctions longboard race as well as 5k fun walk, 13.1, 20 and 30 mile bike rides.  Early bird registration is now open online at www.HandsAcrosstheHarbor.org..

Postponed by Hurricane Irma, the fifth annual Comedy for a Cause fundraiser will be held on Thursday, Nov. 9, at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, Punta Gorda. All previously distributed sponsor, VIP and show-only tickets will be honored on the new date, when eight area business leaders will perform improvisation comedy under the direction of Charlotte County Commissioner Dr. Chris Constance. Tickets may be purchased at www.comedy4acause.net. Donations in cast members’ names may also be made that site as well as www.crowdrise.com/fifthAnnualComedyforaCause. Call 941-255-1022 for more information.

An introductory course in Florida Fishing is being offered at the PGI Civic Association. Topics to be covered include fishing techniques, tackle selection, rigging, knot tying, lures, baits, cast nets, fish identification, tides, and more.  Rods, reels, lures, nets and other fishing equipment will be demonstrated during the class.  The instructor is long time local fishing guide Capt. Ralph Allen.  The course is held on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. for six weeks beginning on Wednesday October 25. The cost for the class is $45 and advance registration is recommended by calling 941-637-1655.

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.

It’s that time of year again, Tringali Park will be hosting the Trick or Treat Down Spooky Street event from 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 21. Break out your best Halloween costume and bags to collect goodies from community vendors along with games and activities. Don’t forget your camera to take in some incredible photo ops. This event is totally free and will take place at the Tringali Park Community Center, 3460 North Access Road, Englewood.  For more information contact Dennis Andrews, senior program coordinator at 941-681-3742 or email Dennis.Andrews@CharlotteCountyFL.gov .

Save the date:  October 27, 8:30 a.m. at Hurricane Charley’s for Drug Free Charlotte County’s 2017 Annual Prevention Breakfast and Awards.  We’ll be honoring those who have “Sowed the Seeds of Prevention” and sharing how we can keep moving forward.  For information visit, www.drugfreecharlottecounty.org.

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Throughout the month, the Center for Abuse and Rape Emergencies/C.A.R.E. is promoting awareness of this important issue in a variety of ways including Purple Pinwheels and yard signs. Please see our website www.carefl.org for more information.  On October 30th, C.A.R.E. is collaborating with the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center to present to the public a free Digital Advocacy Workshop on the dangers of social media and location apps, various technologies being used for stalking, and more!

Chamber Member News


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.

Suncoast Humane Society, Meet Bobbi, a 1 yr. old Domestic Shorthair weighing just 8 lbs. with a grey & white coat. Bobbi is a very frisky, friendly & playful cat. She has a lot of energy and easily entertains herself. And she will sit on a windowsill and stare at a lizard without batting an eye – she is transfixed. Bobbi roams freely in our Cattery and quickly introduces herself to visitors. She will make a great feline companion for someone who appreciates personality plus in a cat!  http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Cat-Domestic-Shorthair-35410551

The United Way of CC will be accepting funding applications for its 2018-2019 grant cycle. Application also covers funds administered by United Way on behalf of the BOCC and the City of Punta Gorda.  Guidelines and application package are available on the United Way of Charlotte County website www.unitedwayccfl.org/2018grants . Completed applications are due by 4:00 p.m. on Monday, December 18, 2017 at the United Way office, 17831 Murdock Circle, Suite A, Port Charlotte, FL 33948.   For more information please contact Aimee Coley at aimee.coley@unitedwayccfl.org, or call 941.627.3539. 

Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar is featuring $1 house margaritas all month long - all of October.  Visit our locations at 24467 Sandhill Blvd. in Deep Creek (941) 235-9184  or 19010 Murdock Cir. In Port Charlotte (941) 766-0666, and remember from appetizer to desert we have a great menu for you to choose from.   Visit www.applebees.com (this offer does not include 2 for 1 drinks). 

Harborside Copier Services of Charlotte County is locally owned and operated by Walter Stawarski. Walter has over 20 years of experience in the industry. We sell and service new and used commercial grade copy machines, printers, wide format plotters, and scanners. We also have lease options available to fit your needs. We have a special on B&W printers low metered for $149.95 while supplies last.  Contact Harborside Copier Services at 941-626-4556 or email us at harborsidecopiers@gmail.com. Check out our website http://www.harborsidecopiers.com/  and our face book page  https://www.facebook.com/harborsidecopiers/.

In the course of employment screening, if you decide to reject an applicant based on information generated in a background check, make sure the applicant first receives a "pre-adverse action notice" ... to provide the applicant the opportunity to dispute the background information you've developed.  Following that, if you do proceed to the rejection, be sure to provide a "final adverse action notice" to the applicant containing the specific language required by the Fair Credit Reporting Act.  For FCRA-compliant screening, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

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 Day, 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.

Job Spot


Florida SouthWestern State College has a need to hire an Adjunct Professor to teach Biology for the Spring, 2018 semester at the Charlotte Campus. The position requires a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with at least 18 graduate semester credit hours in Biology.  If you are interested in this part time, temporary opportunity, click here to apply:   https://fswsc-careers.silkroad.com/.  Join our team of adjunct faculty and inspire our students to “Dedicate to Graduate”.   FSW is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Business Development Specialist – Port Charlotte territory. Join the BrightStar Care Administrative Team. The Business Development Specialist is responsible for developing an existing territory to increase sales.  They will do this by establishing and maintaining contacts that will develop into sales leads.   Professional sales experience, preferably outside sales experience, is required, but it does not have to have been in home care or health care in general.  Having strong community ties and established relationships is a plus. BrightStar Care of Venice and Port Charlotte, 425 Commercial Court, Unit F, Venice, FL 34292 941-412-4070 www.BrightStarCare.com/Venice

As a successful Sponsorship Sales Representative for the Charlotte Stone Crabs, you will produce corporate sponsorship sales revenues by setting appointments with regional business leaders and selling new corporate sponsorship's for the club, as well as servicing / maintaining existing sponsorship accounts.  You will report directly to the General Manager and complete in or assist in the following tasks during the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training and Charlotte Stone Crabs regular season.  Full time position.  Salary + Commission. Submit your resumé to: jcook@stonecrabsbaseball.com

Best Pro Team Cleaning is looking for a few good women and/or men who are not afraid of work. Can you pass a background check?  Do you have a clean driving record?  Can you start immediately?  Then we are looking for you. We are also looking for an occasional window washer, able to do an occasional power washing and want flexible hours, no weekends unless you want the hours.  Jobs start at 8:30 a.m. and the end time varies. Call us and stop in @:1435 Collingswood Blvd Ste. F, Port Charlotte, (941)726-1216.

Peace River Botanical & Sculpture Gardens is seeking part-time retail sales persons to staff the Admission Booth and the Garden Community Center snack and gift area. Dependability, positive personality, and desire to join an exciting new opportunity is required. Experience is preferred but not essential. Submit resumes to peacerivergardensmembers@gmail.com or call 941-621-8299 between 9 and 12, M-F. Leave message if there is no answer.

Roger D. Eaton, Charlotte County, Clerk & Comptroller is recruiting for a Court Services Manager.  This is a highly responsible position overseeing the Criminal Court Services County/Circuit Felony, Misdemeanor and Civil Traffic departments which include E-filing, recording, indexing, redaction, fees and fines, collections, and records retention rules for these services.  This is a full-time Exempt position offering a full benefits package.  Experience/knowledge in Florida criminal statute laws is required.  Min pay is $22.94/hour.  For more details or to apply go to: www.Co.Charlotte.FL.US click on Employee Relations Menu, Job Listings link or email employee.relations@charlotteclerk.com

Just for fun


A friend of mine had resisted efforts to get him to run with our jogging group until his doctor told him he had to exercise. Soon thereafter, he reluctantly joined us for our 5:30 am jogs on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

After a month of running, we decided that my friend might be hooked, especially when he said he had discovered what “runner’s euphoria” was.

“Runner’s euphoria,” he explained, “is what I feel at 5:30 am on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.”

 

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
941-639-2222
jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org

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Charlotte Sun Column - October 18, 2017

     If you’re up and at ‘em this morning, please join us for the Third Wednesday Coffee from 7:15 to 8:30 a.m. at the Event Center in Punta Gorda.  Jerry Mallet, the director of the County’s Office of Emergency Management, will be the featured speaker. Gator Wilderness Camp School is the sponsor.

     The Oct. 26 Business Card Exchange is hosted by the Gustitus team at Keller Williams Peace River Partners.  Please join us at 1032 Tamiami Trail, Port Charlotte and bring plenty of business cards to hand out and a small gift to promote your business.  So, what that last line refers to is that from 5 to 6 p.m. we mix and mingle.  At 6 p.m., we do a drawing for gifts donated by Chamber members.  And, if you bring a gift, you’re recognized and (generally) your photo is taken along with the “winner” of your gift for added name and face recognition.  It’s all about promoting your business.

     During the Nov. 15 Third Wednesday Coffee, we’re holding our 21st Annual Holiday Celebration with table top displays.  Members may rent an uncovered eight-foot table to decorate with a holiday theme for $20 ($10 for non-profits).  Special recognition will be given for the most creative, most unusual and most attractive holiday business displays. The public is invited to attend what is always a festive early morning few hours.   

     Our 39th Annual Christmas Parade is Sat., Dec. 9.  We’ll step off at noon from the Charlotte Performing Arts Center (next to Charlotte High), head north on Taylor and disband at the Event Center.  The reviewing stand will be in front of Centennial Bank.  The theme for the parade is Christmas Happiness which is a pretty open idea for decorating your float or truck and theming your performing unit.   For more information, please visit our website or call our Port Charlotte office at 627-2222.

     As a reminder, now’s the time to get us information about your upcoming events so we can get it on the Community Calendar on our website. As our winter residents return, they want to know about everything that’s going on, so make sure you’re there.  Please email jcaffee@charlottecountychamber.org.

     Happy birthday to my fabulous daughter, Kate!

Business OnLine - October 16, 2017

From the Charlotte County Chamber of Commerce


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

Serving all of Charlotte County for more than 92 years


October 16, 2017

Upcoming Chamber Events:


Wed., Oct. 18, 7::15 to 8: 30 a.m., Third Wednesday Coffee.  Sponsor: Gator Wilderness Camp School. Program: Jerry Mallet, director of the County’s Office of Emergency Management.

Thurs., Oct. 26, 5 to 7 p.m., Business Card Exchange, Tony & Rhonda Gustitus Team, Keller Williams Peace River Partners, 1032 Tamiami Trail, PC

General Information


In November, 2018 you will have the opportunity to vote for additional funding to cover school operating expenses. Charlotte County Public Schools wants to hear what you think funding priorities should be.  Please help us gather input by clicking the link below for a short survey. Referendum Interest Survey

The Punta Gorda Boaters Alliance, in partnership with the City of Punta Gorda announce a "Dock Matching" program for all Punta Gorda homeowners who are affected by the recent seawall failures as a result of Hurricane Irma.  Homeowners who are affected by seawall failures will need to relocate their boats either immediately or while their new seawalls are installed. Local citizens who have vacant docks can make their docks available for short or long term use by individuals who have boats that will be displaced due to seawall replacement. The Boaters Alliance assumes no liability with this program. For more information, contact John Welsh, President of the Boaters Alliance, at (941) 205-0042 or City Council Liaison, Lynne Matthews at (941) 575-3341.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is proud to support the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.  On Saturday, October 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at some 5,500 locations across the country, individuals can dispose of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. The service is free and anonymous—no questions asked. For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs, locations, and the Take Back Day event, go to the DEA Diversion website.

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):


Tues., Oct, 17, 9:00 a.m., PicklePlex of Punta Gorda at Florida SouthWestern State College

Thurs., Oct. 19, 5:30 p.m., Frohlich, Gordon & Beason Law Firm, 18401 Murdock Cir, PC

Wed., Oct. 25, 5:30 p.m., Parkside Assisted Living and Memory Cottage, 2595 Harbor Blvd., PC

Mon., Oct. 30, noon, Visual Arts Center, 210 Maud St., PG

New Members


Western Michigan University College of Aviation, 28000 Airport Road, #15, PG 33982
James Williams, Ph: 941-676-2957
www.Wmich.edu/aviation  james.1.williams@wmich.edu                                                 


The Coffee Village, 2595 Tamaimi Trail, #F, PC 33952
Feneshia Postlethwait, Ph: 941-961-9707
www.thecoffeevillage.com  info@thecoffeevillage.com
Sponsor: Peter Keating, SBDC       

Time Insurance Agency, 115 W. Olympia Ave., PG 33950
James Kubek, Stacey Law, Ph: 941-637-1106      
www.timefl.com   staceyl@timefl.com                                                                                  


A+ to Z Computers, 24690 Sandhill Blvd., #604-605, PG 33983
Mark Zehr, Ph: 941-626-9798
www.aplustoz.com   only@aplustoz.net

Florida Dance Workshop, 3109 Tamiami Trail, #5678, PC 33952
Holly Legare, Ph: 941-743-2115
www.floridadanceworkshop.com  Floridadanceworkshop@gmail.com

Scott’s Cleaning Service, 2373 Montpelier Rd., PG 33983
Scott Srader, Ph: 941-204-6822
Bearhaven123@gmail.com                                                  
Sponsor: Rev. Ed Blackwell, San Antonio Catholic Church

San Antonio Catholic Church, 24445 Rampart Blvd., PC 33980-2702
Rev. Edward A. Blackwell, Ph: 941-624-3799               
www.sanantoniorcc.org   fred@sanantoniorcc.org

Chamber Member Events


FGCU Continuing Education Presents: The Symphony Orchestra as a Business Model. This 6-session program developed by Raffaele Ponti demonstrates how The Symphony Orchestra is a perfect Business Model that can inspire, redefine and fine-tune any business. Participants will have the opportunity to physically sit in the orchestra during a working rehearsal at the Charlotte Performing Arts Center, 9:00am – 12:00pm, Saturdays, Nov. 11, Dec.2, 2017, Jan. 13, Feb. 24, Mar. 17, Apr. 7, 2018.  Chamber members get a 20% discount ($115).  Use code HC1636CC when you call 941-505-0130 to register.  FGCU Cont Ed Presents Ponti

On Nov. 1, 2017, Charlotte Technical College is hosting a Job Fair for our students from 8:45-Noon. The public will also be welcome at this event. If you are interested in meeting some great candidates please fill out the attached exhibitor application. This is a free event for you and the applicants.  To apply as a vendor please click on the link, answer the questions, and click submit. Since we offer 20+ programs at Charlotte Technical College we are looking for a nice balance of opportunities for our students.  https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=bxIkr2vseEK8_Wh_IJhw1gk-vmBQSjlLoYoLOneMntBUNzQxVEFJN05XUjU4U0NXU01KNFhEUFo2Wi4u

Attention all high school students and adults returning to school. Presented by Charlotte County Community Services, FASFA Informational Presentation walks through the step-by-step process of preparing and applying for federal student aid (FASFA), October 25, 2017, 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Charlotte Community Foundation, 227 Sullivan Street, Punta Gorda, FL  33950, 941-637-0077.

AWA Investments invites you to join them for a catered dinner on Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. for a Dinner & Learn on Social Security – Everything You Didn’t Know to Ask - at their office at 21942 Edgewater Dr., Port Charlotte.   Please RSVP to 206-6200 or jenifer.wise@lpllpl.com

Join us for our Grand Opening weekend October 27th - 29th! We will have a Kick-Off Party on Friday, October 27th with live music and food from 5-7pm.  Tour the property, see our Villas under construction, walk our 485’ fishing pier & spend time with our sales team learning about the Newest & Best-Priced Waterfront Condos & Villas in Southwest Florida.  Head to Harborside El Jobean Beach & Yacht Club, 14550 River Beach Drive in Port Charlotte, just a few miles from the Charlotte Sports Park off 776! 

Christmas party planners: Tiki Tom & LA Daniels “eVentertainment” specialists - providing Live  Entertainment for your business function or private party. Appearing Saturday 12n-4p at “Wild Hog Wild” GOP Event 🇺🇸 at the Fair Grounds. Visit www.charlottegop.com for info. Also appearing Saturday Night @ Wyvern Rooftop 7-10p. 

Dr. Laura Korman is a chiropractic physician, as well as a diplomate in nutrition, and has been developing a new program called GEARED2bewell, which focuses on living a ketogenic lifestyle.   This lifestyle is beneficial for so many reasons--improved brain function and memory, clarity of mind, decreased pain and inflammation, increased energy, better digestion, balanced blood sugar levels, and more. Visit www.cleanandketo.com and click on the "GEARED2bewell" tab.  Free Seminar, Saturday, October 28th, on weight loss and discussing her GEARED2bewell program. RSVP:   941-629-6700    

The Key Club of Florida SouthWestern Collegiate High School is holding a car wash from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 21, at the Punta Gorda office of Charlotte State Bank & Trust, 2331 Tamiami Trail. Car wash donations will be used for the Key Club’s Murder Mystery Fundraiser, set for 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 2 at the Charlotte campus on Airport Road in Punta Gorda. For addition information on the car wash or to order tickets for Murder Mystery Fundraiser, call Key Club Treasurer Casey Rayfield at 941 661-7968.

Gilded Grape Winery and Wine Bar, 4069 Tamiami Trail Port Charlotte,  941-235-WINE (9463). October 18,  7 – 10pm ,  “Karaoke”  with Jeannie Smyth; October 20,  7:00 to 10:00pm, Steve Widmeyer “One Voice, One Guitar;” October 20, 5:30 to 8:00pm,  J&K’s Mobile Café’ October 21,   6:00 to 8:00pm,  Gilded Grape Monthly Wine Tasting. 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 12:00noon to 10:00pm.  www.gildedgrape.com.

The United Way of Charlotte County presents the 4th Annual Beaujolais 2017 Celebration on Wed., November 15 from 5:39 to 8 p.m. at the Visual Arts Center.  Enjoy tapas and wine tastings.  Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased by calling 627-3539 or Click this link to purchase your tickets to our 4th Annual Beaujolais Celebration!

Kings Gate Golf Club – 3rd Annual Indoor Craft and Direct Sales Shopping Extravaganza, Saturday October 21, 2017 10:00am-3:00pm in the Ballroom. Free Admission-Door Prizes-Holiday Shopping. Lion’s Den Restaurant open for lunch and dinner and the best Happy Hour in town daily from 3pm-6pm. Looking for a place to hold your next meeting, Christmas Party or Wedding? Look no farther than Kings Gate with banquet rooms that can accommodate 25 to 350 guests. Call Natalie at 941-444-6600 ext. 854. 24000 Rampart Blvd.- Port Charlotte.

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.

Upcoming Workshops for Nonprofit Organizations Strategic Planning Workshop (2 Thursdays) – November 2 and November 9 (9:00 – 11:30) Roles and Functions of the Nonprofit Board – Thursday, November 16 (9:00 – 10:30 a.m.). These workshops will be led by Dr. Robert (Bob) Peterson, a local resident and Charlotte Community Foundation Board Member with over 30 years of international consulting firm experience following a successful career in higher education and business management.  Please RSVP to ccf@charlottecf.org or call 941.637.0077 to reserve your space.

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.

 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.

Free exhibits Color and Art with Meaning now on display at the Visual Arts Center, featuring a fantastic selection of original art for sale. Join us for Create & Paint nights (fun with wine & painting) every Wed. at 6pm in October - To purchase tickets call the PG Chamber (941) 639-3720. The Visual Arts Center is located @ 210 Maud St, across from Fishermen's Village. Gallery & Gift Shop Hours: M-F, 9-4 & Sat, 10-2. For more info on upcoming classes, exhibits & events, visit www.visualartcenter.org.

 Please join us for our annual Young Life Golf Tournament, held at Heron Creek Golf Course on Saturday, Oct. 28th. Young Life is a non-denominational, international Christian outreach for teenagers. Its purpose is to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ.  So come and join us for a great day of golf, friendly competition, good food, and fun and prizes…all while supporting a great cause! Register online at www.charlotteharbor.younglife.org or contact Tom Parker (Leadership Charlotte 2017) at 941.456.5433.

Key events at Punta Gorda Isles Civic Association; call 941-637-1655 or go to http://pgica.org for more information. The Big Red Bus: PGICA’s parking lot Friday, October 27th from 11 am -3:00 pm. Medicare Made Simple: Three identical classes at 7:00 pm in Room 1 on October 17, October 24, and November 2. Review Medicare Parts A to D, Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) Plans A to N, trade-offs between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage, and how-when-why to consider changing Plans. Contact Ralph Temple at 941-286-6047 for more information.

Nav-A-Gator Happenings - October 19 – Thursday – Live Music, The JP’s 6-9pm; October 21 – Saturday, Gary & Kerri 2-5pm, October 22 – Saturday, Sunny Jim & John Frinzi 2-5pm
Cover charge canned goods and nonperishable food items that are donated to local Hurricane Irma victims.

Join us on Thursday, October 26th, as we celebrate the award winning artwork of Gina Battle with gin and Jazz! Make the scene dressed in your best 30’s & 40’s Billie Holiday garb! Come view the creatively limitless artwork of this locally renowned, self-taught artist while enjoying live jazz, great company, food and libations. What could be better?  The party starts at five at Charlotte Memorial Funeral Home, 9400 Indian Springs Cemetery Road, Punta Gorda. This celebration is part of the Arts and Humanities Council of Charlotte County “Art in Public Places” program.

Gulfshore Opera - Gulfshore Tenors, Cultural Center Theatre, 7:30pm, November 17. The collaboration of these very talented young tenors creates a singing sensation. With a repertoire of some of the most beautiful love songs of the last 50 years and some fun opera hits. Tickets: $25.  If you prefer to order by phone, call the Box Office (239-529-3925) to purchase tickets between 10am -2pm. 

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.

Charlotte Players presents the first production of its 2017-2018 Langdon Playhouse Season located at 1182 Market Circle, Port Charlotte.   The Second Time Around, a touching comedy, written by Henry Denker, is Co-Directed by Jerry Jones and Paula Pender. The story centers around two senior citizens, a widow and a widower, who strike up a love affair.  Performances are October 20, 21, 27, 28 at 7:30 pm and October 22 and 29 at 2:00 pm. To purchase tickets: www.charlotteplayers.org or 625-4175 Ext 220.   Tickets: $18 for Adults $9.00 for Students.

Fishermen’s Village announces the addition of a new signature event “Throwback to the 50’s!” to be held Saturday, October 28, 2017, 12 Noon-4 pm.    Live entertainment will be featured in all three sections of the Village: • “Boomers Band” –golden oldies,   rock ‘n roll, Motown, Blues and more! • Nick Dattilo and The Legends Band – tribute to Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison, Ritchie Valens, The Beach Boys • The “Just Us Duo” – 50’s, 60’s, light country, classic rock and Big Band. Come dressed in attire from the 50’s and 60’s and join the fun!  Admission and parking are free. 

Bayfront Health Port Charlotte is offering a special to women for October, which is annually recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. During the month, Bayfront Health is offering a digital mammo screening for $65. And, women are invited to attend a Pink Party Thursday, October 12 or Wednesday, October 25.  Bayfront Health’s Pink Parties will be held at Bayfront Health Port Charlotte on Thursday, October 12 or Wednesday, October 25, 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. women can get their mammogram along with some well-deserved pampering. Mammo appointments and reservation is required by calling 941-766-4321.

You’re invited to the groundbreaking of PicklePlex of Punta Gorda at Florida SouthWestern State College at 9 a., on Tuesday, October 17 at 9 a.m. on the FSW campus, 26300 Airport Toad, Punta Gorda.

Tringali Park will be offering Winter Break Camp for campers in VPK through 8 grade for Dec. 26 - 29 and Jan. 2 from 7:15 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Tringali Park Recreation Center.The cost of the program is only $60 for December 26 - 29 and $15 for Jan. 2. There are limited spaces available for all dates, so register early. Visit www.CharlotteCountyFL.gov  and click Get Active – Online Registration on the Playing page or stop into Tringali Park Recreation Center.  For more information call 941-681-3742 or email Dennis.Andrews@CharlotteCountyFL.gov.

In conjunction with Punta Gorda Founders’ Week, the annual Punta Gorda History Center Southern Supper will honor 10 new entrants to the Punta Gorda History Center Hall of Honor.  A full traditional Punta Gorda style southern supper will be served at Hurricane Charley’s in Punta Gorda at 5 p.m.  For more information or tickets ($55) call (941)258-2080 or email puntagordahistorycenter@gmail.com.

You are invited to Country for a Cause 2017, hosted by Virginia B Andes Volunteer Community Clinic on Friday, November 3, 6-10 pm, at the Charlotte County Fairgrounds Expo Hall (2333 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte). Enjoy the Ben Allen Band, country cookin’, cash bar and a live auction. VIP and General Admission tickets available online www.volunteercare.org/country or call Robin at 941-276-1668. Proceeds benefits the patients at the Clinic and Pharmacy.

The Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center (CHEC) is pleased to offer the program “Mysteries of Migration” by Florida Master Naturalist Kate Borduas at 10 AM on Wednesday, October 18 at Bayshore Live Oak Part in Port Charlotte.  Kate will focus on the fall and spring migration of birds that we see here in Florida and she will explain how and why birds are able to make these epic journeys.  For information and/registration for this FREE program, call 941-475-0769.

The Charlotte Harbor and Punta Gorda Community Redevelopment Agencies and title sponsor Waste Management invite residents to participate in the 10th Annual Hands Across the Harbor Half Marathon Bridge Run, Ride, and Roll. The event will be on January 27, 2018 and features a half marathon, 5k competitive run, 13.1 mile competitive IDSA sanctions longboard race as well as 5k fun walk, 13.1, 20 and 30 mile bike rides.  Early bird registration is now open online at www.HandsAcrosstheHarbor.org..

Postponed by Hurricane Irma, the fifth annual Comedy for a Cause fundraiser will be held on Thursday, Nov. 9, at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center, Punta Gorda. All previously distributed sponsor, VIP and show-only tickets will be honored on the new date, when eight area business leaders will perform improvisation comedy under the direction of Charlotte County Commissioner Dr. Chris Constance. Tickets may be purchased at www.comedy4acause.net. Donations in cast members’ names may also be made that site as well as www.crowdrise.com/fifthAnnualComedyforaCause. Call 941-255-1022 for more information.

Country for a Cause 2017, Friday, November 3rd, 6-10 pm at the Charlotte County Fairgrounds Expo Hall. Music by the Ben Allen Band, Loving You Right Now. A “Good Ole Down Home Country” Meal, Cash Bar, Live Auction & Paddle Auction. Proceeds to benefit the patients at the Virginia B Andes Volunteer Clinic and Pharmacy. VIP Tickets - $100pp - includes 2 drink tickets, VIP seating, tableside appetizers General  Admission - $75pp. For additional information, call Robin at 941-276-1668

An introductory course in Florida Fishing is being offered at the PGI Civic Association. Topics to be covered include fishing techniques, tackle selection, rigging, knot tying, lures, baits, cast nets, fish identification, tides, and more.  Rods, reels, lures, nets and other fishing equipment will be demonstrated during the class.  The instructor is long time local fishing guide Capt. Ralph Allen.  The course is held on Wednesday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. for six weeks beginning on Wednesday October 25. The cost for the class is $45 and advance registration is recommended by calling 941-637-1655.

Thursday, October 19, 5:00 to 6:30 p.m., Bayfront Health Punta Gorda Medical Office Plaza, 713 E. Marion Ave., Punta Gorda. Bayfront Health invites you to join the voices for recovery in honor of National Recovery Month. Every September, this national observance focuses on raising awareness of mental and substance use disorders, celebrating individuals in long-term recovery. This year, Bayfront Health wants to show how Our Community Rocks. Rocks, painting supplies, refreshments and hors d’oeuvres will be provided Free. Seats are limited. RSVP required. Register at www.BayfrontHealthEvents.com.

CARE Auxiliary’s Basket Luncheon is Tuesday, October 17th at River City Grill.  We have a new event on October 11th from 5-7:30pm at the Captain's Table.  This will be a happy hour event where we will sell tickets good for one well wine/well drink or appetizer for $10.  The entire $10 goes to C.A.R.E.  We will have live piano and singing as well as items to raffle off.  Kristie Lawson, careauxiliary@gmail.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.

Save the date:  October 27, 8:30 a.m. at Hurricane Charley’s for Drug Free Charlotte County’s 2017 Annual Prevention Breakfast and Awards.  We’ll be honoring those who have “Sowed the Seeds of Prevention” and sharing how we can keep moving forward.  For information visit, www.drugfreecharlottecounty.org.

The Punta Gorda Charter Chapter of the American Business Women's Association is having a yard sale on October 21st from 8:30 AM-2:30 PM to be held at Gregg's Automotive Repair Center at 236 S. Tamiami Trail in Punta Gorda. This is to benefit the Virginia Vaughn Memorial Scholarship Fund.  Annually scholarships are awarded to deserving candidates in our area to further their education.  Please support this very worthwhile event. For more information please call 941-637-8017.

CCSHRM will present a 4-hour management training program on October 17, 2016 at the CareerSource Office only costing $25 per participant.   Topics of training include Hiring, Coaching and Progressive Discipline, Termination, What Leadership Expects from Management and laws that are applicable based on company size. Managers will walk away with professional advice designed to protect them and the company they work for and the session will end with a round table discussion answering any question that arises in the room.  Contact Kim Hansen for more information at 239-770-2601.CCSHRM 2017 Management Flyer

Free exhibits Color and Art with Meaning now on display at the Visual Arts Center, featuring a fantastic selection of original art for sale. Join us for Create & Paint nights (fun with wine & painting) every Wed. at 6pm in October - To purchase tickets call (941) 639-8810. The Visual Arts Center is located @ 210 Maud St, across from Fishermen's Village. Gallery & Gift Shop Hours: M-F, 9-4 & Sat, 10-2. For more info on upcoming classes, exhibits & events, visit www.visualartcenter.org.

Peace River Tours at the Nav-A-Gator is offering their Wilderness River Cruise at half price when you bring in a donation of canned goods/nonperishable food items that will be donated to local Hurricane IRMA victims.   Enjoy a 90 minute ride, fully narrated Eco-Tour where you will see the landscape changes brought about by Hurricane IRMA, and learn about the history, vegetation & wildlife along the river. Daily cruises, reserve your seat 941-627-3474, boat departs from Nav-A-Gator Grill & Marina 9700 SW Riverview Cir Lake Suzy, offer good until October 31, 2017.

Country for a Cause 2017, hosted by Virginia B Andes Volunteer Community Clinic on Friday, November 3rd, 6-10 pm, at the Charlotte County Fairgrounds Expo Hall (2333 El Jobean Road, Port Charlotte). Enjoy the Ben Allen Band, country cookin’, cash bar and a live auction. VIP and General Admission tickets available online www.volunteercare.org/country or call Robin at 941-276-1668. Proceeds benefits the patients at the Clinic and Pharmacy.

October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Throughout the month, the Center for Abuse and Rape Emergencies/C.A.R.E. is promoting awareness of this important issue in a variety of ways including Purple Pinwheels and yard signs. Please see our website www.carefl.org for more information.  On October 30th, C.A.R.E. is collaborating with the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center to present to the public a free Digital Advocacy Workshop on the dangers of social media and location apps, various technologies being used for stalking, and more!

Fabulous Finds Resale Shop, 4265 Tamiami Trail, Unit N in Port Charlotte, Town & Country Plaza (Charlotte Harbor Publix) (941) 979-8230 BIG SALE! Discover your Fabulous Find on COLUMBUS DAY! Monday October 9, 2017Hours: 9:00am to 6:00pm
50% off of non-boutique clothing and non-boutique shoes PLUS An additional 5% on all sales over $14.92!

Chamber Member News


The United Way of CC will be accepting funding applications for its 2018-2019 grant cycle. Application also covers funds administered by United Way on behalf of the BOCC and the City of Punta Gorda.  Guidelines and application package are available on the United Way of Charlotte County website www.unitedwayccfl.org/2018grants . Completed applications are due by 4:00 p.m. on Monday, December 18, 2017 at the United Way office, 17831 Murdock Circle, Suite A, Port Charlotte, FL 33948.   For more information please contact Aimee Coley at aimee.coley@unitedwayccfl.org, or call 941.627.3539. 

Fishermen’s Village merchants are partnering with The Salvation Army to assist with relief efforts by collecting financial contributions. 100% of collected funds will be designated for Charlotte and Desoto relief efforts.   Cash and checks are being accepted. (Make checks payable to Salvation Army, Memo Charlotte and Desoto Counties). The need is critical. Please help us to help our neighbors!  All donations can be dropped off at any Fishermen’s Village merchant. Your Donation Is Appreciated!

Suncoast Humane Society Meet Gloria, an 8 year old Catahoula Leopard dog mix who weighs about 35 pounds. We think Gloria is quite a beautiful dog. Gloria has lived with children and was friendly, playful and tolerant of them. She is better with humans than she is with other pets and will be best in a home as the only one.  http://www.petango.com/Adopt/Dog-Catahoula-Leopard-dog-33060091

As we will be departing soon for our cruise around the world, I wanted to update you with our new blog site. Smoke and Roses’ website has now been changed to a blog site and we invite you to follow our adventure. It is still a work in progress as our tracker is not yet activated, but I’d like to know what you think. If you get this more than once I apologize as I now have 3 email boxes (too many to manage well).  New blog site: www.smokeandroses.com.

Harborside Copier Services of Charlotte County is locally owned and operated by Walter Stawarski. Walter has over 20 years of experience in the industry. We sell and service new and used commercial grade copy machines, printers, wide format plotters, and scanners. We also have lease options available to fit your needs. We have special on B&W printers low metered for $149.95 while supplies last.  Contact Harborside Copier Services at 941-626-4556 or email us at harborsidecopiers@gmail.com.

Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar is featuring $1 house margaritas all month long - all of October.  Visit our locations at 24467 Sandhill Blvd. in Deep Creek (941) 235-9184  or 19010 Murdock Cir. In Port Charlotte (941) 766-0666, and remember from appetizer to desert we have a great menu for you to choose from.   Visit www.applebees.com (this offer does not include 2 for 1 drinks). 

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.

Be sure to provide notice and obtain a signed consent from the employee or applicant before initiating a background check.  Make sure the notification form (or, more commonly, the "release") complies with the requirements set forth in the Fair Credit Reporting Act by making it a separate document (not part of your application form) designed solely to notify the employee or applicant that you're going to do a background check and need their consent in advance.  For FCRA-compliant screening, contact Doris Hebert-Ferrigno at NRG Background Checks!  941-488-8500;  800-531-6522;  nrginfo@atlantic.net

We Support the Chamber! Total Merchant Services of Florida wants to support our chamber. Any member that is renewing their membership or has renewed in the last 6 months can receive $150.00 from us when they sign up with our company for credit card processing. And, we will give you a free cost comparison too.  Call Steve Marcum 941-417-9800 to learn more.

Buy a Practice Facility Membership at Heron Creek Golf & Country Club for yourself or the golfer in your life! They make great gifts for the Holidays. Call Richelle for details 941-240-5100.

J.D.’s Bistro and Grille wants returning and new guests to sample our Pre-fix Menu, available for a limited time.  Please call for a reservation or just come in and enjoy the musical styling of our jazz entertainers, as the delectable food, prepared by Chef Daniel Cortez melts in your mouth. There is also a private room available for meetings and parties! Now is the perfect time to book your Holiday Events.  Please contact Lori Laughridge for additional information at 941-456-9436. 

The Gilded Grape Winery and Wine Bar is making our Venue available on Sunday Day, 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.

Job Spot


As a successful Sponsorship Sales Representative for the Charlotte Stone Crabs, you will produce corporate sponsorship sales revenues by setting appointments with regional business leaders and selling new corporate sponsorship's for the club, as well as servicing / maintaining existing sponsorship accounts.  You will report directly to the General Manager and complete in or assist in the following tasks during the Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training and Charlotte Stone Crabs regular season.  Full time position.  Salary + Commission. Submit your resumé to: jcook@stonecrabsbaseball.com

Best Pro Team Cleaning is looking for a few good women and/or men who are not afraid of work. Can you pass a background check?  Do you have a clean driving record?  Can you start immediately?  Then we are looking for you. We are also looking for an occasional window washer, able to do an occasional power washing and want flexible hours, no weekends unless you want the hours.  Jobs start at 8:30 a.m. and the end time varies. Call us and stop in @:1435 Collingswood Blvd Ste. F, Port Charlotte, (941)726-1216.

Tampa Bay Rays Spring Training takes place each year at Charlotte Sports Park.  The Rays seek a Spring Training_Charlotte County Ambassador to lead spring season ticket sales efforts, assist in coordinating event appearances and grassroots marketing activities, and assist in community outreach activities in the Charlotte County area. It is estimated the seasonal position will run for approximately 6 months from October 2017 through March 2018. The position will be located at the Rays spring training offices at Charlotte Sports Park. Please submit applications to Robbie Artz at rartz@raysbaseball.com.   

Peace River Botanical & Sculpture Gardens is seeking part-time retail sales persons to staff the Admission Booth and the Garden Community Center snack and gift area. Dependability, positive personality, and desire to join an exciting new opportunity is required. Experience is preferred but not essential. Submit resumes to peacerivergardensmembers@gmail.com or call 941-621-8299 between 9 and 12, M-F. Leave message if there is no answer.

Roger D. Eaton, Charlotte County, Clerk & Comptroller is recruiting for a Court Services Manager.  This is a highly responsible position overseeing the Criminal Court Services County/Circuit Felony, Misdemeanor and Civil Traffic departments which include E-filing, recording, indexing, redaction, fees and fines, collections, and records retention rules for these services.  This is a full-time Exempt position offering a full benefits package.  Experience/knowledge in Florida criminal statute laws is required.  Min pay is $22.94/hour.  For more details or to apply go to: www.Co.Charlotte.FL.US click on Employee Relations Menu, Job Listings link or email employee.relations@charlotteclerk.com

Just for fun


NICKNAMES
If Laura, Kate and Sarah go out for lunch, they will call each other Laura, Kate
and Sarah.

If Mike, Dave and John go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat
Boy, Godzilla and Four-eyes.
EATING OUT
When the bill arrives, Mike, Dave and John will each throw in $20, even though it's only
for $32.50.  None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.

When the girls get their bill, the pocket calculators come out.
MONEY
A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs. 

A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn't need but it's on sale.
BATHROOMS

A man has six items in his bathroom:  toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel.

The average number of items in the typical woman's bathroom is 337.  A man would not be able to identify more than 20 of these items.

------------

The judge reviews the divorce case very carefully and issues his judgement.

"Mr. Smith, I am going to give your wife $750 a month."

Mr. Smith's replies, "That's very nice of you, judge. And every once in a while I will send her a little extra too."

 

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
941-639-2222
jmathis@charlottecountychamber.org

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