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Now browsing: Hometown News > Community > Brevard County

Community notes - Melbourne
Rating: 2.26 / 5 (19 votes)  
Posted: 2012 Jul 27 - 00:25

Kidney Beach Walk, Footprints in the Sand

The National Kidney Foundation of Florida recently held its first official Kidney Beach Walk, Footprints in the Sand at the Cocoa Beach Pier.

The walk began in the water with surfers hitting the water at sunrise for "Circles of Life" paddle-out honoring all who have saved lives through organ donation.

This year took on a special meaning when Wilson Shkymanksi was honored. Mr. Shkymanksi is Rich Salick's younger brother who gave his brother the "gift of life."

Congressman Bill Posey joined in the celebration of life as he addressed the crowd about the need for organ donation and events such as The NKF Footprints in the Sand Kidney Walk to raise funds and awareness to continue the Circle of Life.

The YMCA got the crowd going with a rumba class on the beach.

Then hundreds of walkers made their mark by putting their footprints in the sand a step at a time to raise funds and awareness for organ donation.

In the "Sand Castles of Hope" contest, big kids, little kids, fathers and mothers built sand castles to wrap up a morning of giving, sharing and saving lives.

The National Kidney Foundation would like to thank local sponsors: Walgreen's, Health First, the YMCA, Lions Club, Fresenius Medical Care, Ash Dermatology, TransLife, Allendar and Allender, the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Christian Surfers, Surf Riders, Space Coast Seafood Festival and the Cocoa Beach Pier.

In a short four weeks, the people of Cocoa Beach raised almost $50,000, of which 83 percent goes directly to patient care, public education, patient advocacy and professional education programs.

Plans are already being made to make this an annual event.

For more information, email http://vimeo.com/42080417.

'Quality of Care in Lung Cancer'

Richard M. Levine, MD, principal investigator for the Clinical Trial Department of Space Coast Cancer Center, is a co-author of the recent article, "Quality of Care in Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer: Findings from 11 Oncology Practices in Florida," published in the Journal of Oncology Practice, November 2011.

In collaboration with oncology practices in Florida and the Moffitt Cancer Center, the quality of care that lung cancer patients have received (in Florida) was reviewed.

Space Coast Cancer Center was selected because of its previous participation in Moffitt's Florida Initiative of Quality Cancer Care, as well as Space Coast Cancer Center's national certification in quality by the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

For more information, call toll-free (855) 894-HOPE(4673) or visit www.spacecoastcancer.com.

More school 'early release' days

As a result of the ratification of the contract for the 2011-12 school year, Brevard Public Schools will be increasing the number of early release days for the upcoming school year in order to provide more time and opportunity for teachers to participate in site-based collaborative planning, professional learning communities and other elements of effective instructional preparation.

Parents are asked to take note of the following dates for early release and begin to plan for them in the upcoming school year: Aug. 29, Sept. 26, Oct. 31, Nov. 28, Jan. 30, Feb. 27 and March 13.

In addition, students will continue to be dismissed early on the final three days of the semester in December and in May during semester exams.

School-aged childcare hours will be adjusted to accommodate the early release schedules on all of these early release dates.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796, or email davis.christine@brevardschools.org.

Include pets in disaster plans

The Humane Society of the United States urges residents in East Coast and Gulf Coast states to keep their pets in mind in preparation for a natural disaster.

People can take some simple - but critical - steps to keep their pets safe and healthy in severe weather and possible evacuations.

More than 35 million people, many of them pet owners, live in areas threatened by Atlantic hurricanes.

The Humane Society of the United States Animal Rescue Team has a fully-equipped response team to assist communities impacted by a natural disaster.

Pet owners can reduce their animals' chances of being at risk during a disaster by following the suggestions below.

Things you can do right now:

. Put a collar with visible

identification on your

pets, including indoor

only pets

. Keep pictures of your

pets on hand for

identification purposes

Ideally, you should also be

in the photo

. Create a pet emergency

kit (see below) and refresh

the items every few

months

. Talk to your neighbors

about how they can help

your pets if you are not at

home when disaster

strikes

. Create a list of hotels

that allow pets. Plan on

evacuating about 100

miles inland

. Pet emergency kits

should include: A

minimum of a three-day

supply of food in airtight,

waterproof containers,

drinking water, bowls for

food and water, current

photos and physical

description of your pets,

including details on

markings medications,

accination records and

first aid pet supplies

comfort items (a toy and

blanket, small garbage

bags, leash, harness,

sturdy carrier large

enough to use as a

sleeping area, litter and

litter box and a sturdy

carrier large enough for

transport and for your

animal to use as a

temporary "apartment"

for several days

For more tips on preparedness plans that include your pets, visit humanesociety.org/prepare.

The Children's Hunger Project

The hunger project in Brevard County ended this school year providing food packages to 317 elementary school-age kids each weekend at five local elementary schools.

With fundraising efforts this summer and fall, the project plans on feeding 1,000 kids each weekend during the upcoming school year. Food packages for kids will be provided in at least 10 local elementary schools.

The Children's Hunger Project should not even have to exist. The fact that it feed so many kids that might otherwise go hungry is a sad commentary on many levels.

However, ignoring any judgment or social commentary, the children are innocent, no matter the family's circumstances. The focus is on the innocent children.

For more information, email bob@thechildrenshungerproject.org or visit http://thechildrenshungerproject.org/.

Brevard County libraries returns book to its shelves

The Brevard County Library System will return "Fifty Shades of Grey" to its library shelves.

The decision is in response to public demand, but also comes after considerable review and consideration by the library system.

In all, 19 books from the "Fifty Shades of Grey" trilogy that were previously available will once again be available through the library system, according to library services director Cathy Schweinsberg.

Recently, a decision was made to pull "Fifty Shades of Grey" from the libraries, as a result of published reviews and the library's own initial analysis of the book and its controversial content.

Since then, the library has begun a review of its selection criteria, and that review continues even as the decision has been made to supply the book in response to requests by county residents.

The books are available effective immediately.

For more information, call (321) 690-6843 or email don.walker@brevardcounty.us.

Melbourne Community Orchestra accepting new members

The Melbourne Community Orchestra is seeking string and percussion players who wish to join the all-volunteer group.

The dynamic orchestra is comprised of 50-plus musicians ranging from student players to adult hobbyists and full-time professionals.

Named "Orchestra in Residence" for the city of Melbourne in 2008, the group performs seven sets of free concerts each season in the Melbourne Auditorium, 625 Hibiscus Blvd., Melbourne.

Call (321) 952-9949 for a rehearsal schedule or visit www.MCOrchestra.org for more information.

Brevard Rescue Mission awarded another grant

Brevard Rescue Mission, which provides transitional housing and support services for homeless women with children, was recently awarded a $5,500 grant from the Community Foundation for Brevard.

Funding will be used to establish a family financial literacy program.

Brevard Rescue Mission is privately funded by donations from individuals, civic organizations, foundations, churches and area businesses.

Donated funds provide housing, education, transportation, counseling, medical care, parent training, household budgeting, tutoring, job training, food and clothing and case-manager support services.

Call (321) 480-9100 or visit www.BrevardRescueMission.org for more information.

Surf fishing tournament in Brevard County

Despite less than favorable fishing conditions created by a pair of freak back-to-back tropical storms, more than 60 anglers competed during the inaugural Space Coast International Surf Fishing Tournament held in Satellite Beach Memorial Day weekend.

A strong 4-foot to 5-foot ground swell generated by approaching Tropical Storm Beryl made surf fishing difficult for both visiting and local anglers.

The tournament was organized by PureOceanTV to raise money for the Anglers for Conservation's Hook Kids on Fishing programs. Major sponsors include DOA Lures, Sea Striker International and Brevard's Tourist Development Council.

Junior Angler Division winner, West Palm Beach's Michael Carhart, fished solo, while his father watched from the sidelines.

Merritt Island's Rick Fleming won the $1,000 first place prize with a 40-inch nurse shark he pulled from the surf on the first day of the tournament.

Merritt Island's Rubin Hendrix, who caught and released a 34-inch snook, while fishing north of Sebastian Inlet using a live mullet, beat Melbourne's Sebastian Noel's 33-inch snook to top the Snook Division.

Less than 1 inch separated second place Huntington Beach's Jonnie Limon from Greg Pinkerton's first-place fish in the Black Drum Division.

Local fishing icon, Andy Noel, took first place in the Bluefish Division with an 18-inch fish; Andy was fishing with his son, Sebastian, and friend, Alan Parnell.

Next year's event is scheduled to kick off on the Friday before Memorial Day.

For more information and photos about the event, check out PureOceanTV and Anglers for Conservation's Facebook pages or call Rodney Smith at (321) 750-3374.

Young women in music scholarship

The nonprofit National League of American PEN Women, Cape Canaveral Branch, awarded its annual scholarship to local high school student Dorothy Gal.

This year's scholarship offered support for a promising young woman in music.

Ms. Gal is accomplished in opera and as a pianist. She has studied music and performed publicly since elementary school.

Her goal is to become an international opera singer.

The object of the league is to encourage the production of creative work of professional standards in art, letters and music.

For more information, visit www.CanaveralPenWomen.org or email VAllenWriter@cs.com.

Florida Tech introduces Football Founders Club

A dozen donors have pledged to help launch a new era for Florida Tech Athletics.

At a special "Inside the Huddle" football banquet recently, FIT President Anthony J. Catanese introduced and honored members of the Panthers Football Founders Club.

The dozen donors collectively committed $1.2 million to help launch the new football program, which begins competitive play as a member of the Gulf South Conference in Fall 2013.

In addition to honoring the Founders Club at the banquet - sponsored by Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Audi of Melbourne - the event also featured legendary football coach Howard Schnellenberger as keynote speaker.

Also at the banquet, head football coach Steve Englehart gave an overview of the program's development as the Panthers approach 2013.

For more information, email mkilcullen@fit.edu or call (321) 674-8427.

Brevard schools world finals results

Six Brevard Public Schools' Odyssey of the Mind teams recently returned from the 2012 World Finals in Ames, Iowa, where they competed against 850 teams from throughout the U.S. and the world.

The BPS teams performed admirably in their respective divisions.

Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college.

Teams were made up of four divisions. Each team applied its creativity to solve one of five problems that ranged from building mechanical devices to presenting its own interpretation of literary classics.

The Brevard winning teams were: Roosevelt Elementary School (Cocoa Beach), Challenger 7 Elementary School (Cocoa), Quest Elementary School (Melbourne), West Melbourne Elementary School, Sunrise Elementary (Palm Bay) - two awards and Indialantic Elementary School.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796 or email davis.christine@brevardschools.org.

Brevard students 'Read To Ride' for free during summer

School may be out for the summer, but Space Coast Area Transit and Brevard County Libraries have continued educating students on the benefits of reading and using transit as an economical and environmentally-friendly mode of transportation.

Space Coast Area Transit is offering free rides all summer to youth younger than 18, who show their free-of-charge Brevard County Library Card.

Since its inception in 2001, the "Read to Ride" program has offered public transportation to thousands of Brevard County students from the day after school lets out until the day before school begins.

"Read to Ride" emphasizes the importance of using Brevard County Libraries as a resource to enhance reading skills during the summer months, as well as encouraging transit as a choice mode of transportation.

For many of the youth, taking the bus is an alternative to being homebound during the summer.

Students can ride their bikes to a bus stop, load the bike on the bike rack located on the front of the bus and have it available to use when they arrive at their destination.

Surfboards are also welcome, based on space availability.

"Read to Ride" participants can speak with a customer service representative to help them access bus transportation and answer questions.

For more information, call (321) 633-1878.

Printable maps and schedules and a Google Transit trip planner are also available on RideSCAT.com.

SPCA assistance request

The Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of North Brevard currently houses approximately 250 homeless pets in need of adoption.

It takes an enormous quantity of food and supplies to care for these animals as they wait for forever homes.

Donations of items from the SPCA "Wish List" are greatly appreciated and will help provide the proper care for pets in need at the shelter.

The SPCA Wish List: dog and cat food, canned chicken and tuna, canned cat and kitten food (9-Lives: ground, not chunk), canned dog food, dog food (Purina One), puppy food (Purina One), cat food (Purina), kitten food (Purina), milk replacers (Esbilac/KMR) and treats (Milkbone, peanut butter, training treats, etc.).

Dog and cat supplies needed are: cat beds, Kuranda dog beds, blankets, comforters, food bowls (stainless steel, 4-inch heavy ceramic), cat carriers and dog crates, cat and dog brushes, dog shampoo and cat dry shampoo, pet grooming, face and ear wipes, dog collars (all sizes), cat litter (scoopable or clay), cat and dog toys, Kong toys (all sizes) and fillings and Nylabones (all sizes).

Cleaning and miscellaneous supplies needed are: Antibacterial hand gel, Band-aids, vet wrap, cotton balls, Q-tips, washcloths and bath towels (new or used), foaming cleaner (Lysol), liquid laundry detergent, liquid bleach, liquid dish soap, Windex, Mr. Clean, paper towels, buckets and sponges.

Donations for a new building fund will also be appreciated.

For more information, please visit the SPCA website at www.spcanorthbrevard.com or contact the shelter at (321) 267-8221.

New Junior League of Central & North Brevard Board of Directors

The Junior League of Central & North Brevard, a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization has announced its board of directors for the 2012-13 year, with President Alysia Lee leading the volunteer organization.

Ms. Lee of Viera was selected as president, and follows Janet Tamborini, 2010-12 president, also of Viera. Ms. Lee will serve a one-year term through May 31, 2013.

Fellow board of directors members are:

. Laura Vance, president

elect

. Ashley Ryder,

president-elect-elect

. Janet Tamborini, past

president

Vice presidents serving on the board include the following members:

. Dawn Stuckey,

membership vice

president

. Julie Bell,

communications council

ice president

. Stacy Slaughter,

community council vice

president

. Rebecca Kirkpatrick,

finance council vice

president

. Martha Lopez, finance

council vice president

elect

. Elizabeth Becker,

nominating and

placement chair

. Catharine Scott, bylaws

chair

The Junior League of Central & North Brevard has been serving Brevard County since 1967 and are members of the Association of Junior Leagues International.

It is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.

For more information, visit www.ajli.org or www.brevardjuniorleague.org.

Indialantic author releases children's book nationwide

Indialantic author Veronica King celebrates the nationwide release of her new children's book, "The Moon is Laughing," a luminous story that will light up young readers' imaginations.

Readers revisit the magic of reading with "Mind Chimes," a playful collection of rhythmic stories that are fun to read, easy to remember and a delight to recite.

Published by Tate Publishing and Enterprises, the book is available through bookstores nationwide, from the publisher at www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore, or by visiting barnesandnoble.com or amazon.com.

This is also an eLIVE title, meaning each book contains a code redeemable for a free audio book version from TatePublishing.com.

Ms. King resides in Indialantic. She is also the author of "The Sun is Sleepy," the first release in the "Mind Chimes" collection.

For more information, please contact James Branscum, marketing representative, at (888) 361-9473 or email james@tatepublishing.com.

Find a kindred spirit ... adopt a shelter cat

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, a nonprofit organization, is teeming with cats - wacky kittens, adventuresome adolescents, captivating young adults and mature hedonistic comfort-seekers.

Cats of all ages and personality types await the perfect match-up. Such diversity could be overwhelming if it weren't for the skilled adoption counselors on hand to help visitors discover their kindred spirits in feline form.

The SPCA's Cat Adoption Center is unlike any other in Brevard County with eight free-roaming cat rooms, where visitors can interact with adoptable cats in a home-like atmosphere.

The lack of cages in these rooms reduces the stress levels of the cats in the adoption facility and encourages playtime between cats and with human visitors.

The public is invited to come by to meet, greet and fall in love with the many cats and kittens waiting for forever homes. Counselors will be happy to facilitate the adoption.

Visit www.spcanorthbrevard.com for a complete listing of available cats or call (321) 267-8221 for additional information.

Brevard County Fire Rescue offers hurricane tips

Brevard County Fire Rescue reminds residents that hurricane season is upon us.

This year, Brevard County is joining local, state and federal agencies to promote preparedness and to be a "Force of Nature" to help spread the word and make members of our community better prepared.

Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.

The NOAA Atlantic Hurricane Season forecast calls for 9-15 named storms, 4-8 hurricanes, and 1-3 major hurricanes.

Fire Rescue offers the following safety tips to ensure that your family is prepared before a hurricane strikes, during the storm and in the aftermath of the event.

Before a storm:

. Understand how hurricanes can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you and your family.

. Develop an emergency plan and practice how and where you will evacuate if instructed by local emergency management officials.

. Create and maintain a disaster supply kit complete with enough water, non-perishable food, and medications to last several days.

. Learn how to properly secure your home against hurricanes. If your home is equipped with hurricane shutters, ensure that they are in proper working order before a storm threatens to strike.

. Monitor local weather forecasts and obtain a NOAA Weather Radio.

During a storm:

. Stay inside your home away from windows and glass doors. Find a safe area inside your home such as an interior room, a closet or bathroom on a lower level.

. If flooding threatens your home, turn off electricity at the main breaker.

. If your home loses power, turn off major appliances, such as the air conditioner and water heater to reduce damage.

. Do not go outside. Weather conditions can change rapidly and lightning, wind and a multitude of other hazards exist.

After a storm:

. Remain indoors until an official "all clear" is given.

. Do not touch fallen or low-hanging wires of any kind under any circumstances. Call police or utility companies immediately to report hazards such as downed power lines, broken water or gas mains, and overturned gas tanks.

. Once power is restored, ensure refrigerated food has not spoiled. Spoiled food is the cause of much sickness two days to a week after the storm.

. Do not operate charcoal grills, propane camping stoves or generators indoors for any reason. This includes inside garages, screened enclosures or near open doors and/or windows.

. When it is safe to do so, remove hurricane shutters from windows and doors. These should not be left in place for any reason. Doing so may prevent early detection of the presence of a fire, hinder firefighting efforts, or prevent your family from escaping the home in the event of a fire.

More information and ideas on how you can be a "Force of Nature" can be found at www.embrevard.com or www.ready.gov/hurricanes.

Information on the different types of severe weather, such as tornadoes, severe thunderstorms and floods, is available at www.weather.gov and www.ready.gov/hurricanes or the Spanish-language web site www.listo.gov.

You can also go to http://www.floridadisaster.org/family/ and create your own family disaster plan, print it out and save it.

Local business owners win awards at convention

Sisters Marge Thompson and Laura Purcell, owners of Home Instead Senior Care of Brevard, recently attended their franchise parent corporation's annual convention in Omaha, Neb.

After only four years of ownership of the local franchise, the sisters were presented with three awards for exceeding revenue expectations.

Since acquiring the business from the previous owners in 2008, Ms. Thompson and Ms. Purcell have grown the company to employ an additional 100 caregivers and home health aides and added seven office staff. They now employ a total of 177 employees.

Home Instead Senior Care makes it possible for seniors to continue living in the comfort of their own homes, with a little help.

From three hours a week to 24/7, their trained caregivers and home health aides are there to provide non-medical assistance, personal care and companionship.

Wildlife Refuge summer visitor center hours

Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center summer hours are now in effect.

The visitor center will be closed on Sunday and Monday and open from Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The new hours will be in effect through the end of September.

Please call (321) 861-0669 for additional information. The visitor center is located on State Road 402, five miles east of U.S. Highway 1 in Titusville.

Maxwell C. King Center 25th anniversary

The Maxwell C. King Center for Performing Arts of Brevard Community College is celebrating its 25th year in bringing the best of the performing arts to the Space Coast.

It was in April 1988 when the theatre first opened its doors to the sound of 'Singing In The Rain." The celebration begins with a 25th anniversary ticket raffle.

Purchase one raffle ticket at $25 and enjoy a chance to win two orchestra seating tickets to every show at the King Center in 2013.

You can enjoy every performance knowing that you have guaranteed seats to some of the biggest shows in town. In the case of multiple performances of a production, you will have the choice of two tickets to one of those performances.

Your year of blockbuster entertainment will include the unforgettable performances of Rock of Ages, The Boston Pops Orchestra presents The Barbara Streisand Songbook with Keith Lockhart and Ann Hampton Callaway, Lord of the Dance and The Temptations and the Four Tops just to name a few.

You won't have to worry about being the first in line to purchase tickets to your favorite show. Your tickets will already be secured for every show coming into the theatre.

There are only 2,500 tickets to be sold. The drawing will be held on Dec. 22 at 7:30 p.m. before the King Center's performance of "A Christmas Carol." You do not have to be present to win.

The King Center is at 3865 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne.

Raffle tickets may be purchased at kingcenter.com or by calling the King Center ticket office at (321) 242-2219. Complete contest rules are available at kingcenter.com.

All proceeds benefit the King Center for the Performing Arts, a direct support organization of Brevard Community College and is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

Beware of utility scam

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is warning consumers to be aware of a multi-state scam targeting utility customers.

The scam claims that President (Barack) Obama is providing credits or applying payments to utility bills.

The scammers contact consumers through posted flyers, social media, texting and or visiting consumers in person.

The scammers ask for the consumer's Social Security number and then provide a phony federal reserve bank routing number to use to receive the credit or bill payment. The routing number is fake and no payments are posted to the consumer's bill.

Consumers are warned not to provide personal information to strangers who come to your door or in response to unsolicited emails or social media posts.

Question anyone who presents themselves as a representative of a utility company and ask for identification before allowing anyone inside your home or onto your property. (Also call the utility company.)

For additional information, contact the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services at www.800helpfla.com or by calling (800) HELP-FLA (435-7352) within Florida, (800) FL-AYUDA (352-9832) en Espaņol or (850) 410-3800 from outside of Florida.

Information provided by the Melbourne Regional Chamber of East Central Florida.

Call (321) 724-5400, Ext. 225, or visit www.MelbourneRegionalChamber.com for more information.

Sheriff candidate runs triathlon

Recently, Brevard County sheriff candidate Todd Maddox and his two teammates (in Team Maddox) took second place overall in the men's relay during the Pineapple Man 27th Annual Triathlon.

More than 600 people participated in the event, which is hosted annually by the Melbourne Beach Rotary Club.

It's the oldest, continuously-held sprint triathlon in Florida and includes a .34-mile swim, 3.4-mile run and a 15-mile bike ride.

The overall winner of the triathlon was Ed Donner.

Sheriff candidate Maddox currently holds the rank of lieutenant with the Brevard County Sheriff's Office, where he has served for 22 years. He has been in law enforcement for more than 25 years.

For more information about the rotary or the triathlon, visit www.melbeachrotary.org.

For more information about Mr. Maddox, visit www.maddoxforsheriff.com.

FIT junior selected in ninth round of MLB Draft

Florida Tech junior Steven Schils was picked by the Atlanta Braves in the ninth round of the MLB First-Year Player Draft recently. His name was called at pick No. 299.

Schils, from Cocoa, transferred to FIT from High Point (North Carolina) prior to his junior season. He made 11 appearances out of the bullpen for the Panthers, going 0-0 with a 4.50 ERA and five saves.

The right-hander did not surrender a run in seven outings and did not give up an earned run in eight. He struck out four and held opposing hitters to a .257 batting average.

Schils was the first player selected in this year's draft from the Sunshine State Conference.

He will join three other former Panthers in the minor leagues: Jonathan Cornelius (Single A; St. Louis Cardinals), Sam Palace (Single A; Washington Nationals) and Mike Piazza (Double A; Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim).

For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.

Aging Matters In Brevard, United Way announce opportunities

Aging Matters In Brevard, in partnership with United Way of Brevard, has received a grant for nine Volunteers In Service To America positions beginning immediately.

VISTA positions are funded through AmeriCorps, a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service.

VISTAs dedicate a year of full-time service to develop and implement projects with an anti-poverty focus, receiving a monthly living allowance, healthcare benefits, childcare assistance, student loan forbearance or deferment, a relocation allowance, the choice of an end-of-service stipend or an education award, service-related mileage reimbursement, and valuable training.

The nine VISTAs will be instrumental in developing projects that provide veterans with transportation to the VA clinic, help seniors safely age in place through housing improvement services such as installing grab bars and access ramps, assist grandparents who are raising their grandchildren with applying for benefits and offering those grandchildren tutoring services, provide seniors facing hunger with hot, nutritious meals, combat homelessness by providing alternative housing options and permanent ID projects, and address the issues of hunger among children and other vulnerable populations in Brevard County.

To learn more about these positions, please visit www.AgingMattersBrevard.org. To apply, please visit https://my.americorps.gov and search AmeriCorps VISTA positions in Florida.

Tourism Day luncheon honors Harris, hotel workers

Brevard County hospitality specialists were honored at the annual Space Coast Tourism Day luncheon, sponsored by the Space Coast Office of Tourism and Space Coast Fun Guide.

Each year, during National Tourism Week, the Space Coast Office of Tourism honors hospitality specialists who work in Brevard County. Those hotel workers range from employees and managers in all facets of hotel operations, from front desk and concierge departments to housekeeping

This year's luncheon was held at the Doubletree By Hilton in Cocoa Beach.

A list of nominees for Hospitality Specialist of the Year follows, in addition to the winner of the coveted award.

The nominees for Hospitality Specialist of the Year were:

. Ryan Corbett, Rendezvous Restaurant at Holiday Inn, Viera

. Joyce Erickson, Candlewood Suites, Melbourne

. Gulam Esoof, Hilton Cocoa Beach Oceanfront

. Donna Fellows, Crowne Plaza Melbourne Oceanfront

. Dee Galli, Courtyard by Marriott, Cocoa Beach

. Jenny Hendricks, Courtyard by Marriott Melbourne

. Rose Laplante, Residence Inn, Melbourne

. Barbara Perez, Fairfield Inn and Suites

. Holly Pierce, Doubletree Melbourne Oceanfront

. Avander Rice, Residence Inn, Cape Canaveral

. Kristen Saeger, Hampton Inn, Titusville

. Chris Taylor, Doubletree, Cocoa Beach

. Maureen Thomas, Hampton Inn, Cocoa Beach

. Teresa Walter, International Palms, Cocoa Beach

. Danny Wilmot, Hilton Melbourne Rialto

Hospitality Specialist of the Year is Gulam Esoof of the Hilton Cocoa Beach Oceanfront.

Also, Neta Harris, executive director of the Brevard Nature Alliance, was the winner of the Profile of Excellence award.

For more information, email donnabalancia@yahoo.com.

International Science and Engineering Fair local winners

Seven Brevard students have earned awards at the prestigious 2012 Intel International Science Fair recently.

The fair, the world's largest high school science research competition, brings together more than 1,500 students from more than 70 countries, regions, and territories to compete for scholarships, tuition grants, internships, scientific field trips and prizes.

Winners from Brevard were:

. Zen Campbell, Dalton Stanley and Spencer Tuttle, Palm Bay High School: Engineering Category: Electrical & Mechanical - third-place award, $1,000

. Michelle Chin, West Shore Junior/Senior High School - Special award: $150,000 full academic scholarship to Drexel University

. Jacob Kimmel, Satellite High School: Cellular & Molecular Biology Category - fourth-place award, $500

. Emily Seitz, Melbourne High School: Animal Sciences Category - fourth-place award, $500

. Sarah Van Sickle, Satellite High School: Engineering: Electrical & Mechanical Category - fourth-place award, $500.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796, or email davis.christine@brevardschools.org.

Brevard employee named School Clinician of the Year

Susan McKeown, resource teacher for speech/language impaired, has been named School Clinician of the Year by the Florida Association of Speech Language Pathologist and Audiologists.

This honor is in recognition of her exemplary commitment and contribution to the delivery of audiology and/or speech-language pathology services within a school setting.

Ms. McKeown has also been selected as Florida's nominee for the association's Van Hattum Award, which was established to advance the work of school-based professionals in serving persons with communication disorders. Activities that earned her this recognition include: the conduct of exemplary clinical services, supervision or research, development of innovative programs with emphasis on those that are replicable, promotion or enhancement of public or private support of speech-language pathology and audiology services in the schools.

For more information, please contact Sue Carver, director of exceptional education program support at (321) 633-1000, Ext. 520.

Watersong honors winners of writing contest

Watersong, a retirement community located in Melbourne, gave away nearly $3,750 in cash prizes to four winners of the community's Silver Pen Scholarship during an recent awards ceremony.

The 2012 winners were:

. Kevin Montes, first place: Kevin graduated as valedictorian in a class of 521 students at Viera High School and will attend the University of Florida to earn a bachelor's (degree) in engineering in the fall.

. Karen Riebsame, second place: Karen is a senior at Melbourne Central Catholic High School. Following graduation, she plans to attend Berry College in Rome, Ga., and double major in animal science and English.

. Patricia Aziz , third place: Patricia is a senior at Melbourne Central Catholic High School and will attend the Honors College at the University of Florida in the fall.

. Julianna Reed, fourth place: Julianna is a senior at Melbourne Central Catholic High School and will attend Florida State University in the fall.

The Silver Pen Scholarship was open to high school seniors with plans to graduate in 2012. Incoming entries were screened and delivered to members of the Resident Advisory Council at Watersong for the formal judging process. Entries were judged based on several criterion including creativity, fluidity of language and the ability to convey complex feelings in a concise and clear manner.

To read the winners' essays in their entirety or to learn more about The Silver Pen, please visit http://SeniorLivingCommunities.pr-optout.com or email SRichards@Water-Song.com.

Brevard schools featured in the Florida Power-Library Schools Program

The statewide recognition of Florida Power-Library School is awarded to schools that involve their school faculty members in developing and implementing outstanding library media programs, focused on student achievement.

After a rigorous review, including site visits, eight Brevard Schools were among the 15 schools chosen as this year's winners of the prestigious award.

These schools provide quality library media programs that encourage students to become lifelong readers and engage students in problem solving and inquiry-based activities.

The eight awarded Brevard Public Schools are:

. Apollo Elementary (Titusville): Dr. O'Kell, principal; Melissa Slack, media specialist

. Audubon Elementary (Merritt Island): Lisa Paniale, principal; Kathy S. Crisafulli, media specialist

. Harbor City Elementary (Melbourne): Christine Moore, principal; Coleen Ward, media specialist

. Hoover Middle School (Indialantic): Mollie Vega, principal; Ana Woodbrey, media specialist

. McNair Magnet School (Rockledge): Rosette Brown, principal; Julie Wales, media specialist

. Ralph M. Williams Elementary (Rockledge): Cynthia Ford, principal; Joye Kralovec, media specialist

. Turner Elementary (Palm Bay): Tanya Knowles, principal; Sharon Justin, media specialist

. Viera High School: James Hickey, principal; Beth Harris and Eryn Worcester, media specialists

Results showed that in schools that had well-staffed, well-stocked, well-managed library media centers, student achievement improved and standardized test scores were higher.

The schools will also receive a large banner for display at the school and logo pins.

For more information, please visit www.fasmnet.org or call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796 or email davis.christine@brevardschools.org.

FIT shortstop scooped up by Atlanta Braves

Florida Tech senior K.C. Clabough became the latest Panther selected in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft recently when he was chosen by the Atlanta Braves with the 869th pick in the 28th round.

He joins junior right-hander Steven Schils, who was taken by the Braves in the ninth round.

Clabough played two seasons at FIT after transferring from Daytona State.

For the Panthers, he started all 99 possible games, batting .374 with 135 hits, 29 doubles, five triples, four home runs and 66 RBIs. He drew 41 walks and swiped 61 of 74 bases over his career.

He led the Sunshine State Conference in stolen bases in both years.

As a Panther, he was selected all-America, preseason all-America twice, all-region five times and all-SSC twice. He was also named to the Tino Martinez Award Watch List prior to the 2012 season.

For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.

Humane Society seeks volunteers

The Central Brevard Humane Society is in need of dedicated individuals or groups who care about the welfare of animals.

Volunteering opportunities are available at the shelter, the Molly Mutt Thrift Shops in Historic Downtown Melbourne, Merritt Island, Palm Bay and Rockledge, the "low cost" spay/neuter and wellness clinic or as a "Society Ambassador" during community outreach (off-site) events.

Volunteer activities in dire need are dog walkers and cat socializers. They also need help with grooming animals and shelter beautification projects, as well as retail help at the thrift shops and assisting with community education and adoption events.

Individuals who volunteer as dog walkers provide daily exercise, affection and socialization to confined dogs, thus keeping them happy, healthy and adoptable - so they may find their new "forever" home with a loving and caring family (and as a side benefit you will get fit and trim).

For more information, contact Susan Rushin, volunteer coordinator with the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 207, or volunteer.coordinator@crittersavers.com.

Panther Women's Tennis ranked at No. 17

Coming off its fourth consecutive NCAA Division II Championship appearance, Florida Tech Women's Tennis achieved its highest national ranking ever at No. 17 in the final Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division II Poll. The Panthers' final ranking is one spot higher than when they debuted at No. 18 entering the spring season.

Led by head coach Bill Macom, FIT posted a 16-9 overall mark in 2012, which included five wins over ranked opponents. Its last win came against then 19th-ranked Florida Southern, 6-3, in the Panthers' regular-season finale.

Katarina Huba and her sister Kristina Huba wrapped up their season as two of the top-ranked players in Division II. Katarina ended her career ranked No. 30. Kristina, meanwhile, entered the singles rankings for the first time in her two years as a Panther at No. 35.

The Huba sisters also received recognition in the national doubles poll. As FIT's top tandem, they ranked No. 13 in Division II.

For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.

New app tracks friends, family members and employees

Mobile Office Software Solutions Inc has unveiled an amazing new app, Trackster, for iPhones and Android phones, that allows users to track their friends, parents to track their children and employers to track their employees in real time, and do it inexpensively.

As a parent, wouldn't it be great if you knew where your kids were at all times? As a teen, how cool would it be if you knew where your best friends were hanging out? And employers, think how productivity could improve if you knew where your field employees were at all times during the workday? Trackster makes all that happen, and a lot more.

Trackster is a revolutionary and inexpensive GPS based application that works on iPhones and Android phones, utilizing Google Maps in real-time. Trackster allows you to track, find and follow your family, friends or employees who also download the Trackster app from either iTunes or Android Marketplace.

If you want to know where your family, friends, or employees are, find them instantly with Trackster.

Want to know where your kids are? www.phonetrackingkids.com

Want to know where your friends are? www.phonetrackingfriends.com

Want to know where your employees are? www.phonetrackingemployees.com.

Mobile Office Solutions Inc. is a software and application development company based in Vero Beach that specializes in mobile applications and solutions for businesses, and GPS tracking software for families, friends and employers.

Sheriff's Office commander receives Manager of the Year Award

Brevard County Sheriff's Office Cmdr. Doug Waller has been named the 2012 Brevard County Manager of the Year by the Florida Space Coast Council.

The annual award is designed to publicize the positive impact that leadership, integrity and management skills can have on organizations and the community.

Nominations are solicited from throughout Brevard County from organizations not affiliated with the council.

Cmdr. Waller is the Criminal Investigations Division commander and has been employed with the Brevard County Sheriff's Office for the past 25 years.

He has been instrumental in the implementation of such innovative programs as the Sexual Offender Registration and Tracking Unit and co-creator of the "GAMEOVER" (Gang And Major Epidemic Of Violence Enforcement Response) Task Force.

For more information, please contact Cmdr. Mike DeMorat at (321) 403-5755.

Humane Society in need of kitten supplies

The Central Brevard Humane Society is in desperate need of Purina Kitten Chow, wet kitten food, blankets, comforters, sheets, towels, cat litter, KMR kitten formula, paper towels and small baby bottles.

All donated items can be brought to the Humane Society, 1020 Cox Road in Cocoa during regular business hours (open seven days a week at 11 a.m. daily).

Gift cards for BJ's Wholesale Club, PetsMart, Petco, Pet Supermarket, Target, Sam's Club and/or Wal-Mart are always appreciated to help with the shopping needs.

For more information, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343.

Bronze Star presented to reserve rescue commander

U.S. Air Force Reservist Lt. Col. Timothy Davis, 920th Rescue Wing, was presented the Bronze Star Medal June 2 during a wing commander's call for his meritorious service while serving as the commander, 26th Expeditionary Rescue Squadron, Camp Bastion, Afghanistan from June 1, 2011, to Sept. 30, 2011.

During the deployment Lt. Col. Davis led 134 airmen to provide rapid personnel recovery and casualty evacuation capabilities for multinational ground forces in direct contact with the enemy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

As the busiest and most mission-tasked rescue squadron, they were credited with flying 1,032 combat flights, totaling more than 750 hours and saving more than 333 lives while providing 269 medical assists.

Forty-five of the missions were considered high-risk, while engaging enemy forces in the hotly contested Helmand Province Region.

For more information about the 920th Rescue Wing, follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

Information provided by Cathleen Snow, Capt., U.S. Air Force Reserve, 920 Rescue Wing Public Affairs at (321) 494-0535 or www.920rqw.afrc.af.mil.

Humane Society announces 'foster to adopt'

The Central Brevard Humane Society has launched a new "foster to adopt" program.

This is a program through which individuals or families provide temporary homes for animals who have been residents of the shelter for six months or longer.

During this time, the Humane Society will supply individuals with an "overnight bag" for their new houseguest containing a collar, flea comb and product, microchip, toys and staff support.

Once the foster period is over, you may decide to make the animal a permanent member of the family. If so, the adoption fee will be waived (must pay for rabies vaccine & county tag).

For more information about this new program, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343 or visit crittersavers.com.

Another Panther goes pro

Florida Tech graduate Ryan McChesney became the third Panther from the 2012 team to break into professional baseball, signing a free agent contract with the Tampa Bay Rays. He joins former teammates K.C. Clabough and Steven Schils, who were recently drafted by the Atlanta Braves.

A May graduate with a degree in civil engineering, McChesney played four years for the Panthers.

He departs as a career .341 hitter with 225 hits, 62 doubles, six triples, 21 home runs and 161 RBIs in 191 games. In his final two years, he primarily played either catcher or first base. Before settling in, he went 4-0 in 2010 as a starting pitcher with a 1.38 ERA and 23 strikeouts in 26 innings.

Over the last three seasons, he has been named Daktronics All-America, all-region six times, Capital One Academic All-District First Team and All-Sunshine State Conference First Team twice.

For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project receives grant

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has announced it has received a $50,000 grant from The Wal-mart Foundation to support its quality-of-life support programs for medically fragile children with disabilities.

The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project is one of 15 nonprofit organizations in Florida to receive grants through The Wal-mart Foundation's State Giving Program, which was created to carry out the retailer's commitment to giving back to the communities in which it operates.

Since 2001, the M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has provided support and services to parents of children with physical disabilities all across the nation, regardless of their underlying disease or disorder.

In addition to providing gently used pediatric disability equipment, new specialized bath chairs and assisting parents in attending medical support group conferences, in early 2012 they opened the doors to Morgan's Place, located at 411 Ocean Ave., in Melbourne Beach.

Morgan's Place is available by appointment only. It has been designed to provide a safe environment for parents to bring their children with special health care needs and physical disabilities for hands-on therapeutic play.

For more information on The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project and Morgan's Place, visit www.themorganproject.org or contact Kristen Malfara, executive director at (321) 506-2707 or by email at morgansplace@themorganproject.org.

Rep. Ritch Workman honored

The Florida League of Cities recently honored Rep. Ritch Workman (R-Melbourne) with a Legislative Appreciation Award at a Space Coast League of Cities meeting. League legislative advocates Casey Cooke and Ryan Matthews presented the award to Rep. Workman.

The prestigious award was presented to Rep. Workman for his efforts during the 2012 legislative session to protect the home rule powers of Florida's cities by supporting the league's legislative agenda.

Rep. Workman consistently voted in support of league positions, offered amendments to bills or worked behind the scenes to rally support for league positions.

Rep. Ritch Workman was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2008. He is a current member and past president of the Florida Association of Mortgage Brokers and was appointed to the Financial Action Team in 2008 by Florida's then-chief financial officer Alex Sink. He is also a member of the Rockledge Rotary Club and is the chair of the Community and Military Affairs Subcommittee.

Founded in 1922, the Florida League of Cities is the united voice for Florida's municipal governments.

For more information, email mstark@flcities.com or call (850) 701-3638.

Let the Humane Society help you with the loss of your pet

While the Central Brevard Humane Society cannot take away the pain when a pet passes on, they understand the loving and unconditional relationship an individual shares with their pet and what it means to face losing that "special friend."

The passing of a pet is hard enough without having to worry about making final arrangements for them. The Humane Society provides prearranged euthanasia, cremation and chapel services to help ease the stress of a difficult moment in a person's life.

Its Rainbow Bridge Community Chapel is a private, peaceful and dignified place where someone can say their "final farewells" to their beloved animal companion. It is furnished with pew seating and soft music that provides a comforting environment for someone to remember their pet and the times they shared.

For more information about these services, contact the Central Brevard Humane Society at (321) 636-3343, Ext. 208 or visit www.crittersavers.com.

Exchange coordinator accepting host family applications

Audra Brown, International Exchange Coordinator for the nonprofit EF Foundation for Foreign Study, is currently accepting applications for host families for the 2012-13 school year and seeking participation from local high schools.

Host families open their homes to a 15-18-year-old from one of 25 countries around the world, and schools may offer enrollment to up to five exchange students per year. Students come for one or two semesters.

Through the exchange experience, both student and family get the chance to learn about a new culture and promote global understanding here in the community.

Host family applicants undergo a screening process to ensure that they are well suited for an exchange experience.

To host, one adult in the household must be at least 25 years old. Schools must agree to enroll the student in a full course of study with no requirements regarding the student's participation in extra-curricular activities or graduation.

Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., EF Foundation for Foreign Study is committed to promoting international understanding and global awareness.

To learn more about high school exchange in your local community, visit www.effoundation.org or contact Audra Brown at audra.brown@effoundation.org and/or (618) 240-1441.

'Wounded Hero Voyage' books

The book, "Wounded Hero Voyage: I Smallest Powerboat Crossing the Atlantic," is out.

Part I features the Tampa to Greenland part of the 2-part voyage to Germany.

"Wounded Hero Voyage II" picks up where book one leaves off, arriving in Greenland.

Brothers Bob and Ralph travel past thousands of icebergs in the world's smallest powerboat to ever cross the Atlantic Ocean, and they are traveling the route which passes just south of the Arctic Circle.

They are traveling unescorted - without a cabin or a keel.

The book is loaded with 92 pictures showing incredible sites and hardships with an up-close view that lets the reader experience the drama as it unfolds.

The storms are rolling in as they motor in small windows of better weather, continuing to the Faroe Islands, Shetlands, Orkneys, Scotland, England, France, Holland, and finishing the 8,312-mile voyage in a boat with less than a foot of freeboard.

They are promoting Wounded Hero Foundations in memory of three marines, John Harvey, George Holmes and Dewey Johnson.

Videos and book information is available at www.RobertBrownBooks.com. Both books are available in paperback and Kindle.

Commercial human space transportation

The Federal Aviation Administration and NASA have signed a historic agreement to coordinate standards for commercial space travel of government and non-government astronauts to and from low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station.

The two agencies will collaborate to expand efforts that provide a stable framework for the U.S. space industry, avoid conflicting requirements and multiple sets of standards, and advance both public and crew safety.

The memorandum of understanding signed by the two agencies establishes policy for operational missions to the space station.

Commercial providers will be required to obtain a license from the FAA for public safety.

Crew safety and mission assurance will be NASA's responsibility.

This approach allows both agencies to incorporate experience and lessons learned as progress is made.

The FAA is responsible for regulating and licensing all U.S. private companies and individuals involved in commercial space transportation.

For details on FAA commercial space transportation responsibilities, visit www.faa.gov/news/fact_sheets/news_story.cfm?newsId=12179.

To view the agreement, visit http://go.nasa.gov/Lru8iQ .

For more information on NASA's Commercial Crew Program, visit http://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew.

Rep. Bill Posey congratulates students bound for U.S. Service Academies

Congressman Bill Posey congratulates nine students from the 15th Congressional District on their appointments to the U.S. Service Academies.

The nation's service academies are the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and U.S. Coast Guard Academy.

The following students from District 15 received appointments:

. U.S. Military Academy:

Rachel Greer, Melbourne High School, Cody Rothschild, Palm Bay High School and U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, Luis Vega, Palm Bay High School and USMAPS

. U.S. Naval Academy:

Rachel Griffin, Merritt Island High School, Siera Snapp, Sebastian River High School

. U.S. Air Force Academy: Vaughn Campbell, Osceola High School and U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, Anthony Kochensparger, Sebastian River High School, Sean Ledfors, Sebastian River High School, Jacob Redito, West Shore Junior-Senior High School

For more information, call (202) 225-3671 or visit www.posey.house.gov.

SPCA urges pit bull 'parents' to prevent unwanted litters

With 8 million homeless pets entering U.S. shelters every year, the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of North Brevard is helping to solve the problem with its "Primp Your Pit (bull)" spay/neuter promotion sponsored by PetSmart Charities.

During the month of August, the SPCA will spay/neuter pit bulls for a special rate of $20.

Today, 35 percent of dogs and cats in U.S. households are not spayed or neutered, yet the procedure is one of the most effective ways to reduce the homeless pet population

Pit bulls, in particular, end up in shelters in large numbers because of myths and negative media that impact public perceptions associated with the breed.

The American Veterinary Medical Association endorses spaying and neutering puppies as young as 8-10 weeks old, and research shows that the procedure can improve the behavior and health of the pet, including reducing the risk of certain reproductive cancers and infections.

In an effort to prevent unwanted litters of pit bulls, this special rate during the "Primp Your Pit (bull)" event applies to all residents of Brevard.

The promotion is based on availability

Please visit www.spcanorthbrevard.com or call (321) 267-8221 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Palm Shores mayor honored with award

The Florida League of Cities honored Palm Shores mayor Carol McCormack recently with the Home Rule Hero Award during the Space Coast League of Cities meeting.

This award was given to mayor McCormack for her efforts during the 2012 legislative session to advance the league's legislative agenda and help protect the home rule powers of Florida's cities.

Carol McCormack has served as mayor of Palm Shores since 2002 and was re-elected without opposition to four-year terms in both 2007 and 2011.

While serving as mayor of Palm Shores, she has acted as an advocate within the county and state regarding highway safety and the reduction of fatalities.

She is currently on the Florida League of Cities and Florida League of Mayors Boards of Directors and is past president of the Space Coast League of Cities.

For more information, email mstark@flcities.com/ or call (850) 701-3638.

Florida College Coach of the Year and the players

For the second time in three seasons, Florida Tech head men's and women's tennis coach Bill Macom has been named "United States Professional Tennis Association College Coach of the Year" for the Florida Division. Previously, he earned the award in 2010.

In his seventh season, Coach Macom guided the men's team to 14 wins, which was a seven-win improvement from 2011.

Newcomer Nicolas Clerc was a standout performer as a sophomore with a record of 18-3 overall and 17-1 at No. 1 singles. He teamed up with Jorge Abarca Montero to form a No. 1 doubles team that went 18-3 on the season.

Freshman Beau Fieldsend also excelled in his first season, posting 15 wins in singles and a 12-4 mark with D.J. Pate at No. 3 doubles.

Coach Macom's work with the women's team led the Panthers to their fourth straight NCAA Division II Championship appearance.

They ensured their fifth consecutive season of 15 or more wins by finishing at 16-9. This success translated into FIT earning its highest national ranking in the program's nine-year history at No. 17 in the last Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division II Poll.

Abigail Greif, Katarina Huba and Kristina Huba recorded 15 or more singles wins this spring. Kristina Huba, a sophomore from Ascona, Switzerland, went 17-5 and 9-1 at No. 2 singles. She and her sister Katarina played at No. 1 doubles and combined for a 15-6 record. Following the season, they both garnered All-Sunshine State Conference recognition. Also, Kristina Huba was tabbed ITA's South Region Player to Watch.

The men's and women's tennis teams continued to impress in the classroom.

The men finished the 2011-12 academic year with a cumulative grade point average above a 3.0, and the women won FIT's Team GPA Award for the highest cumulative GPA among all of the institution's women's sports at 3.65.

For more information, call (321) 674-8250 or visit www.floridatechsports.com.

NASA offers web, mobile links to follow space station and mission control

NASA is using the Internet and smart phones to provide the public with a new inside look at what happens aboard the International Space Station and in the Mission Control Center at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Log onto the agency's "Space Station Live!" web page or download the companion "ISSLive!" mobile application to get up-to-the-minute information.

Groundbreaking research and technology development work is going on every day in the microgravity environment of space, and Space Station Live! allows users to see what the expedition astronauts do minute by minute.

Space Station Live! includes a web experience and free mobile ISSLive! app for smart phones and tablet computers accessible on NASA's website. The app also is available through the Google Play and iTunes app stores.

Special features of the Space Station Live! web and mobile app experience include: live streaming data from various space station systems, live streaming data from actual crew and science timelines with social media links, descriptions and educational material that describe how the space station works, educational lessons using the live content, 3-D virtual mission control, 3-D virtual space station using live streaming data to correctly position the sun, Earth, moon and the station's solar arrays, 3-D model of the space station with labels and colored by the international partner contributions to its assembly and links to NASA's five international partner space agencies' mission information.

To use Space Station Live!, visit http://spacestationlive.nasa.gov.

To download ISSLive! and other NASA mobile apps, visit http://www.nasa.gov/connect/apps.html.

For information about the International Space Station, visit http://www.nasa.gov/station.

'Get some Summer Loving'

"Get some Summer Loving" when you adopt a shelter pet this summer and all year 'round.

Every month, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of North Brevard features different animals that are available at its shelter and promotes them with special reduced adoption fees.

The SPCA is extending its "Adopt-A-Shelter-Cat Month" promotion.

July is when "Patriotic Pit Bulls" get their chance to show what great, devoted pets pit bulls can be.

"Black Friday" doesn't just come once a year at the SPCA. Every Friday, black dogs and cats (and select black-and-white dogs and cats), have reduced adoption fees.

For more information, stop by the Dog Adoption Building, 455 Cheney Highway, Titusville, or the Cat Adoption Building, 425 Cheney Highway, Titusville, or visit www.spcanorthbrevard.com to see a list of all animals available for adoption at the SPCA of North Brevard.

Grants offered to promote beautification of public spaces

Citizens and groups that would like to complete beautification projects to improve the appearance of public spaces, medians and rights-of-way in Melbourne are eligible to seek grants to support their projects. Grant applications are currently being accepted.

Steven Graham, the city's parks administrator, explained that the program developed by the Beautification & Environmental Advisory Committee is to provide grants of $500 to $2,500 for landscaping improvements, with the project applicant providing an in-kind match of 50 percent.

Those interested in seeking a grant must complete an application form that is available at www.melbourneflorida.org/leisure/parks.htm and must agree to maintain the landscaped area for a year. Grants are to be provided as reimbursements after work is complete, with up to $12,000 in projects to be funded in coming months.

Applications are to be evaluated by the Beautification & Environmental Advisory Committee. The evaluations are to be based on the "Florida Friendly Landscape Principles" developed by the University of Florida's Cooperative Extension Service.

Applications are to be submitted to the City of Melbourne Parks Division, 2895 Harper Road, Melbourne, FL 32904, or sent via email to sgraham@melbourneflorida.org.

Interested parties can also request additional information via e-mail, or by calling (321) 953-6230.

Former Panther hit .429 in two games for Gulf Coast League Braves

It took only two games in the Gulf Coast League for former Florida Tech shortstop K.C. Clabough to be called up to the Single-A Rome Braves.

The Atlanta Braves' 28th-round selection in the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft hit .429 with an RBI and a run scored in seven at-bats. He notched his first RBI of his professional career in his Minor League Baseball debut Tuesday against the GCL Yankees. Two days later against the GCL Phillies, he went 3-for-4 and scored one run.

In two seasons for the Panthers, the Cocoa Beach native started all 99 possible games at shortstop. He batted .374 with 135 hits, 29 doubles, five triples, four home runs and 66 RBIs. He drew 41 walks and swiped 61 of 74 bases in his FIT career.

To view Clabough's MILB bio page and his stats, visit http://atmilb.com/Mh6ymy.

Sheriff's jail accreditation manager selected as the finest in the state of Florida

Jail accreditation manager Jeff Jarvis was recently selected as the Florida Corrections Accreditation Commission's "2011 Distinguished Service Award" recipient for the state of Florida.

Mr. Jarvis was presented this award at the Florida Police Accreditation Commission Conference in Bonita Springs in June.

He has been involved with the accreditation process for several years and has provided unique insight and expertise for improvements to the commission's process and standards.

For more information, visit www.BrevardSheriff.com.

United Way of Brevard funding achieves local impact of more than $17 million

Sixty-one local health and human service programs at 43 Brevard agencies will benefit from nearly $4 million in funding, thanks to United Way donors.

United Way of Brevard's Board of Directors recently approved the funding recommendations of more than 100 volunteers who spent more than 2,000 hours reviewing agency financials and funding requests, as well as touring agencies.

Besides the funding from the Community Care Fund, another million dollars will be distributed - both here in Brevard and outside of our community - at the direction of donor-designated gifts, thanks to the successful 2011 United Way Community Campaign.

This, along with the grants that United Way of Brevard manages for the community, increases United Way's total financial impact on the community to more than $17 million.

For more information, call (321) 631-2740.

Health First Health Plans receives highest accreditation

Health First Health Plans has been awarded an Accreditation status of Excellent - the highest possible level - from the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

Health First Health Plans has received this top rating for both its commercial and Medicare plans for the third consecutive three-year accreditation period.

The accreditation survey process includes on-site and off-site evaluations of more than 60 standards and selected performance measures conducted by a team of physicians and managed care experts.

Information from health plan records, consumer surveys and interviews with health plan staff are collected.

For more information, visit www.ncqa.org, call (321) 434-4333 or email jackie.oconnell@health-first.org.

Gator Club seeks sponsors for kickoff party and golf event

The Brevard County Gator Club is looking for sponsors and vendors with Florida Gator-related items for its annual kickoff party and golf challenge.

This year's event will be Saturday, Aug. 18, at 5:30 p.m. at the Duran Golf Club, 7030 Stadium Parkway, Viera.

There will also be a nine-hole par-three golf challenge at 4 p.m. before the kickoff party, which begins at 5:30 p.m. A free children's golf clinic will begin at 3 p.m., with two live alligators in attendance.

Sponsorship opportunities are available for the children's golf clinic, two live alligators event, kid's fun zone, golf holes and program sponsorships. Sponsorship donations range between $25 and $250.

The club is also trying to contact all ex-Florida Gator football players who reside in Brevard County for the golf outing and to attend the event.

For more information or to become a sponsor or vendor, please call (321) 890-7754 or email rcr228@cfl.rr.com.

VE 9-Hole Golf League officers

New officers for the 2012-13 season of the VE 9-Hole Golf League were sworn in by outgoing president Mary Ann Ollier during an installation luncheon at the Black Tulip Restaurant.

The officers are: Shirley Ferris, co-vice president; Sandy Barbaro, co-treasurer; Nancy Razzini, secretary; Diana Ashbrook, co-treasurer; Sue Buttner, president; and Mariette Present, co-vice president.

Mary Ann Ollier was presented a gift for an excellent job as president for the past two years.

Lady golfers interested in joining the league may call Doreen Volpe at (321) 631 7403 for details.

Health First Health Plans receives highest accreditation

Health First Health Plans has been awarded an accreditation status of "Excellent" - the highest possible level - from the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

Health First Health Plans has received this top rating for both its commercial and Medicare plans for the third consecutive three-year accreditation period.

The accreditation survey process includes on-site and off-site evaluations of more than 60 standards and selected performance measures conducted by a team of physicians and managed care experts.

Information from health plan records, consumer surveys, and interviews with health plan staff are collected.

A national oversight committee of physicians analyzes the team's findings and assigns an accreditation level based on the plan's performance.

For more information, visit www.HealthFirstHealthPlans.org, call (321) 434-5665 or call toll-free at (800) 716-7737.

New law waiving fees for military veterans in effect

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation encourages military veterans, who have been honorably discharged within the past 24 months, to apply for a new licensure fee waiver available through the department.

The department now has the ability to waive initial licensure fees for military veterans under a new law that passed during the 2012 Legislative session. The waivers could save veterans anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than a thousand dollars, depending on the license type.

Through House Bill No. 517, the initial license fee, initial application fee and initial unlicensed activity fee will be waived for veterans returning from service, provided the veteran applies for licensure within 24 months of being honorably discharged

The law will apply to new licenses granted for more than 20 professions under the department's jurisdiction, including construction, real estate, certified public accountants and cosmetologists.

The waiver can be downloaded from the department's military services webpage at www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/dbprmilitary.html and should be included in applications for professional licensure.

For more information, visit www.MyFloridaLicense.com.

Federal and Junior Duck Stamps help protect wetland habitats

The 2012-13 Federal Duck Stamp is on sale across the United States, giving hunters, stamp collectors and anyone with an interest in migratory birds and other wildlife an easy way to help conserve habitats.

Ninety-eight percent of proceeds from sales of the stamp are used to acquire and protect vital wetlands supports hundreds of species of migratory birds, wildlife and plants.

Fish and Wildlife Service director Dan Ashe joined representatives of the U.S. Postal Service, Bass Pro Shops and other conservation partners at the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World retail store in Virginia recently to celebrate the first day of sale of both the $15 Federal Duck Stamp and $5 Junior Duck Stamp.

The new stamps are now available at thousands of post offices, Bass Pro Shops and other sporting goods stores and retail locations across the country, and can also be purchased online at www.duckstamp.com.

The electronic validation may be used to hunt or obtain free admission to a refuge immediately, while a physical stamp is mailed to each customer.

Learn more about the Federal Duck Stamp Program online at www.fws.gov/duckstamps, or on Facebook at USFWS_Federal Duck Stamp. Learn more about the Junior Duck Stamp at www.fws.gov/juniorduck, or on Facebook at Federal Junior Duck Stamp.

Crosswinds Youth Services recognizes staff members

Crosswinds Youth Services recently gave special recognition to several of its outstanding staff members.

Ann Fosburr, program assistant, received the Dale Carnegie Award for her professionalism and positive attitude in her work with the Independent living services program.

Michele Cassel, independent living specialist, was recognized with the Tortoise Award for her perseverance and commitment to quality.

Michael Burgess, youth care worker, received the Employee of the Quarter Award for his excellent work in the Robert E. Lehton Children's Shelter.

Crosswinds Youth Services Inc. is a nonprofit organization with its campus in Cocoa. It provides a variety of services for youth and families in crisis throughout Brevard County.

For more information about Crosswinds and its programs, call (321) 452-0800 or visit www.crosswindsyouthservices.org.

The Performance Academy at Harmony Golf Preserve

Under the leadership of the Harmony Golf Preserve director of instruction and community outreach, Spencer Graham III, Harmony has designed an academy specific to coaching clients to become exceptional players in golf and ambassadors for the game.

It is called the Performance Academy at Harmony Golf Preserve & Junior Golf Performance Academy.

The academy emphasizes measurable progress in every aspect, with a major focus on short game, golf course management and tournament preparation.

Mr. Graham has been coaching golf full-time for 19 years.

In addition to the performance academy's curriculum, in 2013 Harmony will also offer a unique full-time residential and commuter program for worldwide elite level junior golfers.

The Junior Golf Performance Academy blends remarkable, full-time golf training with academics and college preparation.

The headquarters for the JGPA will be located in the Town of Harmony.

For more information, call (407) 891-8525, email sagraham@troongolf.com or visit www.harmonygolfpreserve.com.

NASA and Craig Technologies sign agreement

NASA has signed a new partnership with Craig Technologies of Melbourne to maintain an inventory of unique processing and manufacturing equipment for future mission support at the agency's Kennedy Space Center.

Under a five-year, non-reimbursable Space Act Agreement, NASA will loan 1,600 pieces of equipment to Craig Technologies.

The equipment supported Space Shuttle Program capabilities, such as flight hardware and cable fabrication. It was used in manufacturing, repair and inspection processes necessary for space flight hardware, avionics and ground processing.

Craig Technologies will be able to use the equipment for five years beginning in January or until NASA requires use of it, whichever comes first.

Craig will be required to operate, maintain and store the property at a single location within a 50-mile radius of Kennedy.

The equipment currently is located in the NASA Shuttle Logistics Depot in Cape Canaveral, and is managed by United Space Alliance.

The equipment will remain there through the end of the year when the current USA lease expires.

For more information about Kennedy, visit www.nasa.gov/kennedy.

Brevard Rescue Mission awarded grant

Brevard Rescue Mission, which provides transitional housing and support services for homeless women with children, was recently awarded a $1,000 grant from the Boeing Employee Community Fund.

The "Transporting Families to Financial Independence Grant" will be used to support transportation service for the families to get to jobs, school and medical appointments.

Brevard Rescue Mission is privately funded by donations from individuals, civic organizations, foundations, churches and area businesses.

Donated funds provide housing, education, transportation, counseling, medical care, parent training, household budgeting, tutoring, job training, food and clothing and case-manager support services.

For more information, call (321) 480-9100 or visit www.BrevardRescueMission.org.

Melbourne High School volleyball

Melbourne High is looking for two coaches, or assistants, for its freshman and junior varsity volleyball squads.

If you are an experienced volleyball player, indoor or outdoor, and would like to coach, please contact Coach Post, head volleyball coach at Melbourne High.

She can be reached via email at post.signe@brevardschools.org.

Schools continue to earn high marks

School grades have been announced, and out of Brevard's 69 elementary and middle schools that received their annual state grades, 64 percent received an A, with 94 percent of schools receiving an A or B (does not include charter schools).

According to data released by the Florida Department of Education, 38 Brevard public elementary schools received an A, 16 received a B, two received a C, and one received a D.

Six of BPS middle schools received an A, five received a B and one received a C.

Out of 1,811 elementary schools statewide, Brevard has three of the top 10 elementary schools based on points earned for the school grade: No. 2 is Freedom 7 Elementary School of International Studies; No. 8 is Robert Louis Stevenson School of the Arts and No. 10 is West Melbourne Elementary School for Science.

Every BPS Middle School increased in total accountability points.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.

Local school named to U.S. Top 100 by Newsweek

West Shore Junior/Senior High School in Melbourne was listed in a national report card among the top 100 public high schools in the United States.

Created by Newsweek, the America's Best High Schools 2012 report card ranks the 1,000 best public high schools in the nation - the ones that have demonstrated to be the most successful in turning out college-ready graduates.

Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High and Rockledge High School were also named among the 69 Florida schools listed in the top 1,000.

For more information, call (321) 633-1000, Ext. 796.

Space Coast Cancer Center offers clinical trials

Richard Levine, MD, principle investigator of the Clinical Trials Department at Space Coast Cancer Center, is a co-author on the recent publication, "Effects of a Brief Multimedia Psycho Educational Intervention on the Attitudes and Interests of Patients with Cancer Regarding Clinical Trial Participation: A Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial."

The article was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology July 10.

The purpose of the study was to determine if a brief discussion with patients regarding clinical trials has a positive impact in their willingness to participate in clinical trials.

The center offers clinical trials to cancer patients as an affiliate of the Sarah Cannon Research Institute, the largest research network in the United States.

For more information or questions, contact Linda Perez, clinical research regulatory coordinator, at (855) 894-HOPE (4673), Ext. 3510.

Brevard County Health Department honored

Heidar Heshmati, M.D., director of the Brevard County Health Department, was honored at the 2012 annual conference of the National Association of County and city health officials, a body of peers, for developing and implementing a program that demonstrates exemplary and replicable qualities in response to a local public health need.

The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was one of 39 public health programs developed by a local health department selected from across the nation to receive the official's Model Practice Award.

The Sexual Assault Examination Response Program was implemented in partnership with the State's Attorney Office, Sexual Assault Victim Services, Salvation Army and Serene Harbour Domestic Violence Shelters, law enforcement agencies, and the Brevard County Health Department.

This award puts Brevard County Health Department into special company - a select group of health departments that exemplify a forward thinking, proactive attitude toward protecting and promoting the health of communities across the nation.

For more information about the Model Practice Awards and to view a list of other award winners, visit www.naccho.org.

- For Hometown News




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