Compiled by Michelle Colesanti,

Brandon Lions Club Luminaria Fundraiser

Each year the Brandon Lions Club conducts its Luminaria fundraising project providing Luminaria Kits to neighborhoods and individuals throughout the Greater Brandon area.

Brandon Lions Luminaria Kits are constructed with white paper bags weighted down with sand and illuminated from within by a candle. They are traditionally displayed on Christmas Eve.

Each kit contains: 15 long burning candles, 15 white bags, and a plastic bag of sand (to use in the base of each bag).
Kits retail for $6.50. Orders over 15 kits will be delivered to your neighborhood.

Please contact Joe Kuebler at 263-2522 to place your order or complete the order Information form located at Orders should be placed by Monday November 8. No payment is required with your order. All orders are COD and can be picked up or delivered on Saturday, December 16.

Proceeds benefit Brandon Lions Charities, a not for profit 501(c)3 organization supporting our eyesight and hearing programs, Southeastern Guide Dogs, Greater Tampa Lions Sight Fund, ECHO, Family Promise, Brandon Outreach, Brandon High School Don Bishop Track Meet, Brandon Area Youth Soccer, and other local area needs since 1954.

Help For Quitting Tobacco

Quitting tobacco isn’t easy. Finding help should be. Tobacco Free Florida offers free tools and services to help you get started in these two hour sessions. Free Community worksite and clinic groups will be offered, with programs covering all forms of tobacco. Free Nicotine replacement patches, gum and lozenges will be available, while supplies last and if medically appropriate.

Class will be available on Monday, November 20 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Oakfield Medical Plaza, Classroom B, 276 S. Moon Ave., Ste. 260 in Brandon.

Five week Quit Smoking Now Support Group on Tuesdays from November 21 to December 19 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at Florida Hospital Pepin Heart Institute Conference Room, 3100 E. Fletcher Ave. in Tampa.

Pre-registration is required by calling 974-7889. For additional classes, visit

Hawthorne Hosts Parkinson’s Disease Support Group

Hawthorne Health & Rehabilitation Center hosts a monthly support group for those diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease and caregivers on the third Thursday of every month.

The next meeting is November 16 from 2-3 p.m. and will take place in the Media Center at Hawthorne. The speaker is Dustie Lynch, MBA/MS, CCC/SLP and will speak about to the Basics about Parkinson’s Disease (will include videos on LSVT Loud & Big).

The Parkinson’s Disease support group is free of charge and open to those who have been diagnosed with the disease, family members, caregivers and anyone with an interest in learning more about Parkinson’s.

Hawthorne Health & Rehabilitation Center, located at 851 W. Lumsden Rd. in Brandon, is a skilled nursing facility with inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs including speech, physical and occupational therapies. Hawthorne also hosts a dementia support group in the assisted living facility, as well as past meetings for those dealing with strokes, diabetes, low vision and other diseases.
For more information or to register, call 661-8998 Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Gardener Class on Organic Vegetable Gardening

There will be Master Gardener Clinic on Organic Vegetable Gardening given by Master Gardener Brad Ward on Wednesday, December 6 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Bloomingdale Library, located at 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico. The clinic will inform on how to successfully grow vegetables organically and  to learn which varieties of vegetables do best in central Florida and when to start those seeds. 

This event is sponsored by the Hillsborough County Master Gardner Program of the Hillsborough County Extension, University of Florida, IFAS Extension.

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Michelle Colesanti
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.