Compiled by Michelle Colesanti,

Fitting At Brandon Regional For Free Knitted Breast Prostheses

The National Knitted Knockers organization provides free knitted breast prostheses for women that have had a single or double mastectomy. The regional group, knocker knitters on the Florida Suncoast, will hold a fitting and knitting session at Brandon Regional Hospital, Classroom A, 262 S. Moon Ave. in Brandon on Wednesday January 17 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. These prostheses are free, light weight, wash and dryable, and fitted to each individual.  For more information, please call Lynn Sandrock at 300-1505 or visit The website for the national organization is

Vendors Wanted For Toy Train, Collectible, Hobby Show and Sale

Vendors are wanted for upcoming, Toy Train, Collectible and Hobby Show/Sale on Saturday, March 24.  It will take place at the Hillsborough County Fairgrounds, 215 Sydney Washer Rd. in Dover from 9 a.m.–2 p.m. All Vendors are welcome, any train memorabilia, trains,  accessories, baseball cards, crafts, comic books, coins, crafts, antiques, diecast cars or any other hobby or collectible related items you may be interested in selling.  Six ft. tables cost $20 each.  If interested, call Joe at 727-244-1341 or you can rent online

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 will take place on January 18 from 2-3 p.m. in the Media Center. The speaker will be Mary Crossfield and she will discuss the Benefits of Tai Chi.

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.

Diabetes Prevention Program

A free diabetes prevention program will be held at Brandon Sports and Aquatics Center starting Wednesday, January 31 from 6-7 p.m. This one year program will be held for 16 consecutive weeks and then bi-weekly for two months and then monthly for the rest of the year.

Throughout the program a trained Lifestyle Coach will give participants the help and support that they need to make and sustain lifestyle changes to prevent type 2 diabetes. This evidence-based program developed by the CDC can assist you to prevent or delay Type 2 Diabetes. Program topics include strategies for healthy eating, being active, dealing with day-to-day situations that may impact a healthy lifestyle, and more.

Goals of the program: Lose 5-7% of your starting body weight, and incorporate 150 minutes week of physical activity.

Can I participate? – To qualify for the program you must be: 18 years and older, overweight (BMI of 25 or higher) and; at high risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes or have been diagnosed with pre-diabetes by a healthcare provider.

Brandon Sports and Aquatics is located at 405 Beverly Blvd. in Brandon. Registration is required. Please call 307-8015; ext: 7111.
Loving Nine Year Old Female Cat Needs A Home

Lady Bug is a 9 year old, black and white female who lost her home due to no fault of her own.

She loves to lie around in the cat towers and be petted. Lady Bug is not only a volunteer/visitor favorite, but she also gets along well with other cats. Come and meet Lady Bug today at C.A.R.E. (Critter Adoption & Rescue, Inc.), located at 1528 27th St. S.E. in Ruskin. For more information, call 645-2273.

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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.