The Apollo Beach Woman’s Club’s (ABWC) January 12 luncheon at Apollo’s Bistro honoring ABWC Longevity Award Recipients. The number of years as a member is in parentheses. Pictured Left to right: Deanna Anest, Judy Billings, Linda Benz, Peggy Palmeri, Eileen Sengstock and Kate Winch (all 10 years); and Catherine Gusler Goodrich (35 years). Not pictured: JoAnn Gounand (10 years), Disa Hjaltason (15 years), Steel Lundy (20 years) and Judy Conn (30 years).

A good endorsement for a club is how long members have been coming back year after year. Last month, the Apollo Beach Woman’s Club (ABWC) honored 11 women who have been club members for 10, 15, 20, 30 and 35 years at its monthly luncheon. The ladies were gifted a vase of wildflowers with this phrase, “Spread kindness like wildflowers.”

ABWC has been spreading kindness in the community since 1959. The group’s primary objectives are to promote sociability among its members, work toward the advancement of womankind and provide scholarships for education and training of students who live in Apollo Beach and the surrounding areas with demonstrated financial need.

ABWC takes pride in providing scholarships to eligible students from East Bay or Lennard High School to honor the students’ academic success and assist with college funds. In 2021, ABWC was able to provide $14,200 in total scholarships to nine recipients. These opportunities are made possible by the hard work of ABWC members and generous member donations.

An eligible student for a 2022 ABWC college scholarship must reside in the Apollo Beach area and/or be zoned to attend East Bay High or Lennard High School. Furthermore, applicants should be accepted as full-time students to a two or four-year college or university in the state of Florida. Consideration for the scholarship will be based on financial need, academic standing, community service history and leadership roles within extracurricular activities. Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 grade point scale, score 24 or higher on the ACT or score 1100 on the SAT. Applications must also include an essay and two letters of recommendation.

The application deadline is Tuesday, February 15 to the school counselor and can be found at

Wednesday, February 9 is the next ABWC luncheon. Eric Hughes, MA, MLS, literacy liaison at Tampa Free Library, will explain Hillsborough County’s basic literacy and English Speaker of Other Language (ESOL) programs and provide women a second-chance scholarship.

During the Wednesday, March 9 luncheon, Anne McCarthy of the FWC, Gulf Coast Marine Fisheries Hatchery and Enhancement Center at Apollo Beach Florida Conservation and Technology Center, will discuss her career history and set up of the Piney Point Hatchery.

All luncheons are $22, and reservations and payments must be received by the Friday prior to the luncheon. For menu details, the venue, and reservations contact Barbara DeOca at 892-1219 or To keep everyone safe, the club asks that only vaccinated ladies attend the luncheons for the time being.

If you wish to learn more about the ABWC, information can be found on the website or by contacting Second Vice President of Membership Liz Pedersen at 777-8215 or

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