Lamb Of God Childcare Center

Tenants Move In To FishHawk Crossings
FishHawk residents now have a new option for their dry cleaning needs. Martinizing Dry Cleaners opened last month in the new FishHawk Crossings Plaza next to the Walgreens at FishHawk Blvd. and FishHawk Crossings Blvd. The location has a drive- through window for easy drop-off and pick-up and offers a wide variety of dry cleaning and laundry services.
According to leasing agent for the plaza, Matt Fuller of Barclay Group, additional tenants coming to the plaza include a dentist, named FishHawk Dental owned by Dr. Kerry Smith DDS, a FishHawk resident, which should be open by mid-November and Snap Fitness, a 24-hour fitness center also scheduled to open this month.
Check out next month’s edition of the Osprey Observer for more information on these stores.
There are still two spaces left to lease in the plaza. For more information, contact Fuller at (727) 733-7385, ext. 324.

Store Opens For Special Occasions
Looking for that perfect dress for homecoming or another formal occasion? Bloomingdale resident Cheryl Bowen recently opened Perfection Prom and Party on Bloomingdale Ave., offering dresses, evening gowns and accessories for prom, Sweet Sixteen, Quinceanera, Bat Mitzvah, holiday parties, destination weddings and other formal events.
A dress registry insures that the dress you choose will be unique for your occasion. Perfection offers personalized service with friendly sales staff to assist you in a fresh, contemporary setting with later store hours to accommodate its busy customers’ schedules. Appointments and fashion show bookings are also available.
Bowen, the wife of a retired Air Force officer, has experienced over a dozen military relocations throughout the United States and Europe and understands the value of a well-stocked dress shop when the need for formal attire arises.
“In addition,” adds Bowen, “my teenage daughter Hannah [has] friends [who] are always happy to offer advice, keeping me in the loop and up on the latest trends.”
Perfection Prom is located at 10313 Bloomingdale Ave., across from SuperTarget in the Bloomingdale Towne Center and can be reached at 621-1991. For more information, visit

Orlando’s Best Offers Pizza and More
“We want to be the type of restaurant where we know our customers’ names,” says Orlando Cruz, co-owner of the new Orlando’s Best Pizzeria in the Crossroads Ace Plaza at the intersection of Lithia Pinecrest Rd. and C.R. 39.
In addition to New York style pizza, Orlando’s Best offers pasta, wings, Philly cheesesteaks, burgers and meatball sandwiches, many of which are homemade at the restaurant.
According to Cruz, the restaurant’s specialty is the double decker pizza, which is made with the restaurant’s famous dough and secret recipe sauce.
“We are very proud of what we do and what we offer,” says Cruz, a Valrico resident who co-owns the restaurant with Jim Michetti. “This is the type of restaurant where families can come in, sit down and enjoy good food at a great price.”
The restaurant is open Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. For more information, call 737-1919.

Pet Store Opens in Sweetbay Plaza
Bungle in the Jungle, a pet store located in the Sweetbay shopping plaza at the intersection of FishHawk Blvd. and Lithia Pinecrest Rd., opened recently offering everything from tropical fish to pet supplies.
Owned by FishHawk resident Karin Allen, Bungle in the Jungle carries a great selection of pets including fish, birds, reptiles and small animals. Pet supplies include food, toys and bedding, breeding supplies and medical items.
“With an exciting jungle theme, we make shopping here an experience you won’t soon forget,” says Allen, who has more than seven years experience in the business.The store is located at 16731 FishHawk Blvd. and is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sunday-Monday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
For more information, call 643-9686 or visit

FishHawk Fest Planned
The FishHawk/Lithia Area Business Council of the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce will host the second FishHawk Evening Fest on Thursday, December 4. The free event will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. at FishHawk Office Park on FishHawk Blvd. (behind Regions Bank).
The event will feature local businesses showcasing their products or services and ample networking opportunities. Some of the participating businesses include: Kids Community College, Premier Care Pediatrics, FishHawk Flooring, SouthShore Realty Group, Osprey Observer, Melissa Snively State Farm Insurance, Sidekicks Martial Arts, FishHawk Storage and many more. Non-perishable items will be collected for a holiday donation to the Emergency Care Help Organization (ECHO) located in Brandon. Individuals who bring an item to donate will receive a free ticket for the door prize drawings.
The FishHawk/Lithia Area Business Council, of the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce, is a group of business owners and representatives from the area of Lithia. The council was organized to assist in both promoting the businesses within this area and to further open dialogue with local businesses to identify area specific opportunities and challenges. The Evening Fest is a joint effort of the council and its members.
For more information about the FishHawk Evening Fest or the FishHawk/Lithia Area Business Council, please contact Allison Braden at 689-1221, ext. 36 or

Lamb of God Opens Child Care Center
Members of the Lamb of God church recently celebrated the opening of a new child care center, Open Arms Early Childhood Center, with a ribbon cutting with the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce.
The center, located at 10540 Browning Rd. in Lithia, offers child care for children starting at 6 weeks old, preschool and prekindergarten programs and before and afterschool care for children in kindergarten through fifth grade.
Applications are now being accepted for enrollment.
For more information, call the church at 653-2354 or visit

New Technician at Animal Hospital
Dr. Ellen Matheson and the staff at Alafia Animal Hospital are pleased to welcome Daphne Farmer to the team as a technician and registered dental hygienist.
In addition to having a bachelor of applied science in Dental Hygiene from St. Petersburg College, Farmer, a Lithia resident with three dogs and two cats, has an associate of science degree in Veterinary Technology from St. Petersburg Junior College.
To compliment Farmer’s skill set and Matheson’s interest in dentistry, Alafia River Animal Hospital is adding digital dental radiography to its services. These dental x-rays will enable the group to best diagnose and treat dental disease.
Alafia River Animal Hospital is located at 7017 Lithia Pinecrest Rd. For more information, visit or call 643-1002.

Mandalay Mist Gets New Home
Mandalay Mist Bronzing Spa and Boutique recently moved to a new location at 1123 Professional Park Dr. in Brandon (behind the Publix on Causeway Blvd.) after four-and-a-half years at its current location at One Divine Place.
According to owner Allison Macri, the new location has been well received by clients. “Besides being in a more convenient part of town for many of our customers, the upfront parking allows quick access to the boutique and tanning,” says Macri.
Mandalay Mist has been exclusively offering and specializing in UV-free mist tanning since opening in April of 2004. With over 4,000 customers to date, its popularity spans the ages with clients ranging from 13 to 82 years old.
In addition to award winning mist tanning, Mandalay Mist also features a specialty boutique for jewelry, handbags, clothing, giftware, gifts for baby, and much more. New lines for this holiday season include By Boe jewelry, Zum soaps, Skeem candles, Makes Scents candles (made right here in the Brandon area), giftable ornaments, Poo-pourri, Madie Deluxe handbags, Lucy B. perfume, and Wonderful Wacky Women gift art. Mandalay Mist will continue to feature jewelry and art from local artists as well.
For updates and more information, call 662-MIST (6478) or visit

Tailgate with Edward Jones
Elijah Heath, an Edward Jones financial advisor in Lithia, is sponsoring a University of South Florida Tailgate from 5-7 p.m. on November 15 at Raymond James Stadium.
Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the United States and, through its affiliates, in Canada and the United Kingdom. Every aspect of the firm’s business, from the types of investment options offered to the location of branch offices, is designed to cater to individual investors in the communities in which they live and work. The firm’s 10,000-plus financial advisors work directly with more than seven million clients to understand their personal goals – from college savings to retirement — and create long-term investment strategies that emphasize a well-balanced portfolio and a buy-and-hold strategy. Edward Jones embraces the importance of building long-term, face-to-face relationships with clients, helping them to understand and make sense of the investment options available today.
For more information, call Heath at 657-2078.

Pick Up Marketing Tips
Please join the American Business Women’s Association at 5:30 p.m. on November 4 at Giordano’s to hear Shannon Carlton, sales manager for the Osprey Observer, speak about “Marketing Magic.”
Business owners are invited to come and learn about target marketing, honing networking skills, inexpensive ways to increase market presence by using what you already have and effective advertising.
Carlton leads monthly Marketing Seminars for the Osprey Observer’s advertisers.
“Many clients come to her seminars with little or no marketing direction,” says American Business Women’s Association representative Debbie Bradley. “They can learn that they are their own marketing department and can increase their business without a lot of time, money or hiring of expensive specialists.”
For more information, call Bradley at 493-1086.

Company Helps Get Computer Solutions
Nearly all American families have at least one personal computer in the home and at work, being a vital part of everyday lives, but do you know what to do when something goes wrong? Now you can turn to Express PC Solutions, owned by FishHawk resident Liz Smith.
“While it may be true that your children are surprisingly proficient at running your computer, you may discover times when even they don’t know what’s wrong with it,” says Smith. “Unlike the major companies and corporations, you might not have an IT department at your beck and call when something goes wrong. That’s where we come in.”
Smith and her team have worked for major companies and corporations and are trained and certified to come to your rescue, no matter how small or large the issues may be. “We have even created an optional monthly maintenance plan that is affordable even for the newest start-up business owner,” says Smith. “We will schedule a regular monthly visit to your office to service your computer to help ensure that your system is up and running and not costing you valuable downtime.”
Express PC Solutions also builds computers and designs them according to customers’ personal needs and requirements.
For more information, visit, e-mail Smith at or call 846-5833.

TechPlayzone Plans Night Out
Every third weekend, TechPlayzone invites young people to participate in Parents’ Night Out from 6:30-11 p.m. Leaving parents with an evening off, young people are able to enjoy TechPlayzone’s computers, movie making, electronic kits and more.
During the month of December, there will be two weekends of Parents’ Night Out so that parents may take advantage of additional time for holiday shopping, cooking and gift wrapping.
During Parents’ Night Out, TechPlayzone staff orders pizza and provides drinks and popcorn. The cost is $30 per child per night, plus $15 for each sibling.
TechPlayzone is a science and technology center conveniently located near Riverview, Valrico, Lithia and Brandon communities. TechPlayzone is pleased to announce that it is a finalist for the 2008 Brandon Chamber of Commerce Small Business Award.
Parents can find out more about TechPlayzone’s Parents’ Night Out, Tech camps, afterschool programs and birthday parties by calling 684-7329 or visiting

Lil’ Swimmer Aquatics Offers Swim Lessons
Although summer has come to an end, it is never too late to teach your little one to swim.
New business, Lil’ Swimmer Aquatics teaches children from about eight months, or as soon as they can crawl, to 5 years survival swimming skills based on the proven PediaSwim methodology in the Apollo Beach, Ruskin, Riverview and Brandon areas.
“One of the unique aspects of this business is that I can actually go to the family’s home pool to teach their children to swim,” says Owner and Apollo Beach resident Korey Nielson, a graduate of the PediaSwin Academy. “All of our lessons are one-on-one with the child so we can individualize the lesson and gear the lessons toward the child’s learning style.”
Nielson is a member of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA), hold a bachelors of science degree in Exercise Physiology from the University of Utah and is a Certified Personal Trainer. For more information, call 777-3373 or visit

Infant Swim Offers Survival Lessons
Survival swim Master Instructor and Riverview resident Kari Bahour owns Infant Swimming Resource (ISR), a nationally recognized system of aquatic survival instruction for infants and young children. The program focuses on educating parents and children about aquatic survival and safety issues
For details on these lessons for children ages 6 months-4 years old, call 643-SWIM (7946), email or visit

Scare the Crow at Plaza Bella
Scare the Crow will take place at Plaza Bella, located at 1078 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico, on Saturday, November 15, starting at 10 a.m. Scarecrows are provided by area businesses and organizations. People can bid on their favorite scarecrow by silent auction and the top bid gets to take home their scarecrow. Coordinators will also be asking people to vote on scarecrows in the following categories: Scariest, Most Trendy (fashionista), Best All-around and Most Talented. Organizing its Stuff the Turkey event for the month of November, Plaza Bella will be collecting food and cash donations for E.C.H.O. (Emergency Help Care Organization). For every five food items or $25 donated, donors will receive a chance for a Plaza Bella basket to be drawn at the end of November. At Scare the Crow, there will be samples, music and fun. There will also be a signed helmet by Bucs player Derrick Brooks for auction, benefiting the Diabetes Foundation.
To enter a scarecrow, contact Roz or Matt at the Green Boutique at 685-9494.

Chai Yo Thai Cuisine Now Open
In the Thai language, “chai yo” means “cheers,” and at the new Chai Yo Thai Cuisine customers are treated to a celebration with every meal.
“We strive to infuse a celebratory, yet refined, spirit into the food that we prepare, the service that we provide, and the atmosphere that we create for our guests,” says owner Topp Saenngarm. “We will offer a dining experience that highlights the simple elegance of Thai cuisine and the warmth of Thai culture, so that our guests will come to think of Chai Yo as the ideal place to relax with friends and family.”
Located at 11695 Boyette Rd., Chai Yo’s menu includes a wide variety of Thai favorites from Pad Thai to Green and Red Curry and appetizers such as fresh rolls and satays.
“We pride ourselves on three main principles: the quality of our foods and services, the teamwork of our employees, and the respect we have for each other and our customers,” says Saenngarm, who started in the restaurant business at the age of 16 and went on to get a graduate degree in engineering from the University of South Florida.
For more information, visit the Website at or call 671-6935.

Space Walk Starts Inflatables Around the World
In an effort to give back to those less fortunate, Space Walk of Brandon owner Tanya Doran recently started a new program, Inflatables Around The World.
“We were looking for a way we could bless children around the world and had a wonderful idea,” says Doran. “Each year, Space Walk purchases many new products so that our customers get the newest and finest product available. As we purchase the new equipment, we retire several pieces that still have many years of useful life in them.”
Through the program, these inflatables can be donated to ministries all over the world and Doran is looking for groups that qualify for a donation.
Call 681-8722 or fill out the application at

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Assignment Editor Kate Quesada started working at the Osprey Observer in 2004 after graduating from the University of South Florida with a masters degree in Mass Communications. Since then, she has held various positions at the paper and has been working as the assignment editor since January 2020. She lives in Lithia with her husband Mike and sons Dylan and Max and stays active in the community on school PTA boards and volunteering with local organizations.