This month, the Osprey Observer Community Newspapers will celebrate its 14th year of publishing positive, community news with its Bloomingdale /FishHawk edition. It’s hard to believe that we started all those years ago and now, we publish five newspapers per month. One each for Bloomingdale/FishHawk, Riverview/Apollo Beach, Valrico and Brandon and then we publish our Christian Voice Monthly.

When the paper first started, my first son was an infant and is now a 5’11” high school freshman and the eldest of three boys in the family.

As the family and the paper has grown, so has the community. New construction has brought new businesses, new schools, new offerings along our corridors and with that have come big business, medium business and the back bone of it all, small businesses. From the Car Wash on the Greens celebrating 15 years in business, from the Christmas tree lots to the soon-to-be expanding FishHawk Bagel Shop, these individually owned and operated businesses along our corridors are our friends, our neighbors and our businesses.

For 2016, let’s pledge to support our locally-owned businesses! Take a look around your community and see what local businesses you might have missed. The nail shop, the cupcake shop, the gift shop, The Foundation Coffee Company….let’s try to keep these shops alive to thrive for 2016.

This year, we have welcomed a new USAA headquarters, TopGolf, Bass Pro Shops, Ford’s Garage, Boca Brandon and many more businesses to our community. Signs are up and plans are made for a Total Wine, Jimmy Hula’s restaurant and of course, the opening of the Bloomingdale Walmart Supercenter with Chick-fil-A, Starbuck’s, Wendy’s, Tijauna Flats, Mattress Firm and more.

As our small businesses grow and more businesses continue to come, with them comes the road improvements. Lithia Pinecrest, Culbreath and Bell Shoals Roads will see some major activity in 2016 and we will work with the County to keep our readers informed.

In addition, we appreciate our readers who are our eyes and ears in the community! Let us know if there is news we should be covering and we are always happy to share!

We thank you, our readers, our advertisers and all local businesses in our community for the support and confidence to keep local news alive.

“Like” us on Facebook (OspreyObserverFans), follow us on Instagram (@OspreyObserver), visit us on or email me at and let us know what we are missing.

Wishing you all the best! 

Marie Gilmore,

Managing Editor

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Marie Gilmore
Marie is the Managing Editor at the Osprey Observer. She covers news, transportation, education and likes to make a positive impact on the community and be 'in the know'!