By Sandy Meyer

Walmart Hiring for Relocated Bloomingdale Walmart 

Walmart is hiring for the relocated Walmart slated to be completed this spring in Bloomingdale. This hiring process usually results in about 200 additional jobs. A hiring kiosk has opened inside the current store located at 949 E. Bloomingdale Ave. Applications will be accepted Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Interested applicants may also apply online at

Through Walmart’s Veterans Welcome Home Commitment, the company will offer a job to any qualified veteran who has been honorably discharged within the past 12 months. Interested veterans may find out more at walmartcareerswithamission. com. Walmart provides a benefits program to eligible full- and part-time associates. For example, it provides a variety of affordable health and well-being benefits including health-care coverage with no lifetime maximum. The majority of new associates will begin work this winter to help prepare the store for its grand opening.

Valrico Welcomes Salon to Plaza Bella

Salon Essence in the Plaza Bella shopping center went under new ownership in October. After owning salons in Virginia and managing salons on Capitol Hill, Owners Michael Shawn and Chris Bilitsky are excited to have a salon located in Valrico and look forward to an exciting new year. With revamped services and a private pedicure room, Salon Essence can attend to your hair, nails, and make-up needs. Salon Essence is located at 1036 Bloomingdale Ave. in the Plaza Bella shopping center. The salon is closed Mondays and Sundays. It offers hair styling, cut and color, manicure and pedicures as well as waxing. Call 681-2060 or visit /Salon Essence Spa.

BC_PettielogoValrico Bakery Offers a Tasty Treats all Year Long

Petite Madelyn’s Bakery is focused on providing high-quality service and customer satisfaction – they will do everything they can to meet your expectations. Owner Megan Malin and her husband do the baking together. It is open Tuesday through Friday 10 a.m.–7 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Visit, call 681-CAKE (2253) or email petitemadelyn Petite Madelyn’s Bakery is located at 1017 E. Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico.

Project Safe Child Held at Campo YMCA

Campo YMCA located at 3414 Culbreath Rd. in Valrico sponsored Project Safe Child in December. The event offered free fingerprinting for kids from ages 5-12. Verify Network, LLC, a local company provided the live scan fingerprints. The owner, Michael Levy, explained that over 800,000 kids in America go missing each year. Some are abducted by a parent and some by strangers while some are run-aways. Only a very small percentage of parents have a copy of their children’s fingerprints which could greatly enhance the identification of missing children for law enforcement agencies. Levy said he hopes that we can do more of these types of events that are crucial in identifying missing children. The December event fingerprinted 14 children and now the parents have an electronic copy for I.D. purposes just in case. In addition to live scan fingerprinting,
Verify Network also provides pre-employment background checks and drug and alcohol testing for the workplace and at home. Contact 352-6995 or

Holiday Charity Ball in Brandon Celebrates 4 Years

The Fourth Annual Brandon Holiday Charity Ball was held at The Regent in December with an evening extravaganza of entertainment, food, live music and silent auction items benefiting Toys for Tots of Tampa Bay. Holiday Charity Ball attendees raised $5,000 and donated over 28 overflowing boxes of toys at a time when the Tampa Toys for Tots organization has seen a greater need for toys. It was a new record for the charity ball, which grows leaps and bounds year after year. Visit

Ace Golf Riverview Named TOP 50 Golf Range in U.S.

The Golf Range Association of America named Ace Golf Range in Riverview as a 2015 Top 50 Standalone Golf Range in the U.S. Ace Golf’s Family Entertainment Center includes a golf driving range, miniature golf, batting cages and golf pro shop. The facility was recognized as a Top 5 New Golf Range when it was built in 2003 and has received the Top 50 US Golf Range award many times since then.
The Golf Range Association of America represents over 12,000 Public Golf Ranges in the United States. Every year, the association chooses the top 50 public, private, and standalone golf ranges as well as the top 50 golf professionals who excel in their service, facilities, and innovation. Ace Golf is locally owned by Bill Place and Su Lee. The company has two golf ranges and three golf courses. All are open to the public.
Ace Golf Ranges are located at 820 S. Kings Ave. in Brandon (phone 651-4653) and at 12910 Boyette Rd. in Riverview (phone 672-7750). Visit

Prelude to a Cure’s 3rd Annual Fundraiser Hailed as a Success

Prelude to a Cure’s 3rd annual fundraiser, Sera in Italia, held in November at The Bridges has been praised as the best one yet. With over 100 people in attendance, the fundraiser ran without a glitch.
With over $40,000 raised at Sera in Italia, Prelude to a Cure is working on establishing the second Barbara Bauer Lung Cancer research grant to be available by spring 2016.
A special thank you to the planning committee members Debbie Ploor, Kathy Greene, Tonja Stuart and Rosie Petrilli and event sponsors Brown and Brown, Eckerd Construction, Raymond James, AGS Stone, Budget Blinds, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals and The Rolling Pin. Visit

USF and UCF Host Friendly Competition for a Good Cause

Spectra Venue Management, operators of two American Athletic Conference (AAC) venues in the state of Florida, the USF Sun Dome at the University of South Florida (USF) and the CFE Arena at the University of Central Florida (UCF), is launching a friendly clothing drive competition between the two university arenas to coincide with their rivalry men’s and women’s basketball games.

The initiative is to collect new or gently used clothing for the homeless or those at risk of becoming homeless within the Tampa Bay and Orlando areas. Both the USF Sun Dome and the CFE Arena will compete in separate clothing drives to see which venue can collect the most donations by encouraging fans, students, and staff to contribute to this great cause. The USF Sun Dome will be partnering with Metropolitan Ministries, while the CFE Arena will be partnering with HOPE Helps, Inc. The USF Sun Dome will hold its clothing drive during USF’s Women’s basketball game against UCF on Tuesday, January 5 at 7 p.m. and during the Men’s USF vs. UCF basketball game on Wednesday, January 20 at 6:15 p.m. Members of the public are asked to drop items off at the designated blue bins, located at each of the four gates of the Sun Dome.

Follow the USF Sun Dome on Facebook at and @USF_SunDome on Twitter and the CFE Arena on Facebook at or @CFEArena on Twitter. Call 974-8924 with any questions.

Elder Ford of Tampa Delivers Meals to Veterans, Seniors and Disabled

For many, the holidays are a time for family, friends and togetherness, but hundreds of people in our own community spend this time isolated and alone. For these men and women, often seniors and people with disabilities, Meals on Wheels of Tampa brings them a friendly face, a nutritious meal and the holiday spirit of compassion through their volunteers.

Committed to spreading awareness of this essential service and encouraging volunteerism, local automotive dealership, Elder Ford of Tampa employees spent a day in December as Meals on Wheels volunteers visiting the homes of 12 in-need community members who would be without dinner for Christmas if not for this delivery. In Tampa Bay, there are currently over 700 individuals who depend on Meals on Wheels, and the numbers are growing. Currently, Meals on Wheels of Tampa requires 350 volunteers every week in order to serve our community.

Visit Elder Ford of Tampa is a new and pre-owned car dealership. Visit

Salons by JC Salon SuitBC_SalonsByJCe Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting

Salons by JC will open its fourth Florida location in Valrico. The Salon located in the Lithia Crossing Shopping Center next to Stein Mart will host a Grand Opening event and ribbon cutting ceremony with the Valrico Fishhawk Chamber on Monday, January 25 from 3–6 p.m. There will be music, food, drinks and a raffle drawing. The franchise leases private suites to independent beauty professionals who rent a suite within the Salons by JC building, but are able to manage their own business. For more information about the suites and available leases, email

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