Compiled by Michelle Colesanti,

Master Gardener Plant Clinic At Bloomingdale Library

On Wednesday, November 1 from 6:30-7:30 p.m., there will be a Master Gardener Clinic on Ornamental & Culinary Herbs given by Master Gardener Heather Diaz at the Bloomingdale Library, located at 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico. 

The clinic will inform about the care and cultural needs of herb plants along with instructions on how to harvest & cure herbs for culinary and other uses. This event is sponsored by the Hillsborough County Master Gardner Program of the Hillsborough County Extension, University of Florida, IFAS Extension.

Hillsborough County Legislative Meeting

Representative Jake Raburn, Vice Chairman of the Hillsborough County Legislative Delegation, announced that the annual meeting will be held on Friday, November 3, at the Florida Strawberry Festival Grounds, Grimes Family Agricultural Center, located at 2508 W. Oak Ave. in Plant City.  The meeting will begin promptly at 9:30 a.m. and will likely last until 3:30 p.m.

The purpose of the meeting will be to hear from local governments and citizens on general issues and gain valuable insight from our constituents, organizations and officials.

Citizens, officials, agencies and groups wishing to address the delegation about general issues or local bills will find the appropriate forms on the delegation website at  The list will be created in the order that the requests are received. The deadline for submitting the speaker request form is Friday, October 27 by 5 p.m.
First wheelchair Accessible Baseball Fields Will Be Constructed In County

Players with special needs will soon have a baseball field that is wheelchair accessible, safer for play and allow even more opportunities for children with special needs and mobility issues to play baseball.

Buddy Baseball is a non-competitive recreational league for boys and girls with special needs where players are paired with a buddy to assist them on the field. Since the league’s inception in 2009, the league has been playing on traditional clay and sod softball fields which can be challenging for children with mobility issues. Currently there are no synthetic rubber baseball fields in Hillsborough County for children with special needs.

Buddy Baseball, in conjunction with the City of Temple Terrace, are in the early planning stages with construction scheduled to begin in March 2018. The State of Florida and Hillsborough County will be funding the project. The fields will be located at the Temple Terrace Parks & Recreation – Family Recreation Complex.

 “The need for these fields is evident by the growth of our league which has grown to 16 teams for each of our spring and fall seasons,” said Russ Oberbroeckling, Buddy Baseball founder and executive director. “We’re overwhelmed by the support provided by our elected officials to this much-needed project to create an even better setting where children with unique needs are understood and embraced.”

 Current funding will be used for field construction. Buddy Baseball is seeking additional donations and sponsorships to support the growing league. All donations are a tax-deductible investment to the league. Donations can be made online at or by contacting Russ Oberbroeckling, executive director at

Buddy Baseball is a non-competitive recreational league for boys and girls ages 8 to 22 with special needs. Each player is paired with a buddy to assist on the field and in the dugout. At the start of the 17th season in September 2017, the league has grown to more than 16 teams with more than 90 different schools participating.

The Neem Tree Is Topic At Riverview Garden Club’s November Meeting

The Riverview Garden Club will hold its business meeting on Wednesday, November 8 at 10 a.m. The guest speaker will be Vickie Parsons on ‘The Neem Tree.’ The club is located at the Riverview Civic Center, 11020 Park Dr. Call 654-6987 for more information.

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Michelle has been with the Osprey Observer for almost nine years, and her current position is Assignment Editor. She resides in Bloomingdale with her husband Phil, two sons, Philip and Matthew, and Tigger the cat.