Ft. Pierce Jazz & Blues Society plays FREE Holiday concert at The Emerson Center

Just in time for the holidays, The Emerson Center’s stage will host the Fort Pierce Jazz and Blues Society for a program of the season’s favorite musical treats served with a unique jazz and blues beat. The concert begins at 7:00 PM on Thursday, December 14 and admission is free.

The Fort Pierce Jazz & Blues Society consists of acclaimed musicians — distinguished artists who have played with some of the major jazz and blues groups around the world. Nowadays, they play for the enjoyment of performing, and their dedication to their musical artistry has earned them a devoted following.

For this special evening, the ensemble has devised a program that will rock our audience into Christmas with a swinging, seasonal tunes designed to keep toes tapping until Santa clears the scene. This is an ideal performance for the entire family, young and old. In addition, guests are urged to stay after this performance for complimentary holiday refreshments. 

The Florida Humanities Series is presented by The Emerson Center at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Vero Beach. This series of noteworthy speakers and performers offers presentations relating to Florida history, people, and culture. All performances begin at 7:00 PM. Admission to each event is free, although a goodwill offering will be solicited.

Upcoming Humanities Series’ programs include Sean Sexton (accompanied by other members of the Sexton family) addressing the topic “Local Legends: The Sexton Family” as part of the Treasure Coast History Festival. Actor Ersula Knox-Odom will perform “The Voice of Mary McLeod Bethune” on February 1,  2018. Finally, local journalist Janie Gould will speak on “Global Events That Touched Florida: Great Depression Through Cold War” on March 29, 2018.

This series is sponsored by the Florida Humanities Council (www.FloridaHumanities.org) with funds from the Florida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs. Marine Bank and Trust Company provides additional funding.

Free admission is available on a first-come first-served basis. The Emerson Center is handicap accessible and is conveniently located at 1590 27th Avenue, on the SE corner of 16th Street and 27th Avenue in Vero Beach. For more information, contact the Emerson box office at 772-778-5249.

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An Unforgettable Musical “Christmas in Ireland” Celebration

Coming to the Vero Beach High School Performing Arts Center

Tickets Now on Sale!

Looking for a unique Christmas Concert to kick off your holiday season? Vero Beach will get the opportunity to be a part of the magic of Christmas while enjoying the Celtic Angels Christmas Concert, Saturday, December 16 at 7p.m. at the Vero Beach High School Performing Arts Center.  This awe-inspiring show encompasses vocal and instrumental seasonal favorites, and Irish contemporary and original Christmas themes with a Celtic twist, along with spectacular world-class champion Irish dancing.

Celtic Angels Christmas features the beautiful vocal quintet Sheeva, some of Ireland’s finest female performers. The Sheeva Quintet members Victoria Kenny, Emily Carroll, Tammy Browne, Amy Penston, and Ellie Mullane, who all hail from Ireland, have studied with the best teachers in Ireland, and performed in a plethora of productions including Joseph and His Technicolor Dream Coat, West Side Story, Grease, and Celtic Woman.

Sit back and experience Celtic Christmas songs including Christmas in KillarneyThe Wexford Carol, Once Upon a Time in Ireland and Oichie Chiuin (Silent Night) sung in Gaelic, the native language of the Celts. Secular Christmas classics will include Jingle Bell RockLet It SnowItCame Upon the Midnight Clear, O Holy Night and I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.

The concert introduces stunning and tantalizing world-champion dance routines of the all-male Celtic Knight Dancers featuring Patrick O’Mahony of Riverdance. Their rhythm, precision and artistic expertise is astonishing and will help to create an unforgettable evening’s entertainment. With music provided by the Trinity Band Ensemble of Dublin, audiences can celebrate the many moods of Christmas with this wonderful production for the holiday season.

The Vero Beach High School Performing Arts Center is located at 1707 16th Street. The concert is presented by Dahre Productions. Tickets are $35, available online at verobeachschools.tix.com, or call the box office at 772.564.5537. For more information contact David Walsh at 772.532.9184.

The Sheeva Quintet intermingle their traditional holiday favorites with contemporary and original Christmas-themed songs with a Celtic twist.

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FEMA News Desk Important Dates

Reminder about Important Application Dates for Disaster Recovery Assistance

ORLANDO, Fla.—The Federal Emergency Management Agency is reaching out to remind you of important dates and deadlines as you proceed with your recovery from Hurricane Irma. Do not miss out on assistance that may be available to you because of a missed deadline.

Some deadlines may be extended, but do not wait. The following information is current as of Oct. 12.

Operation Blue Roof: Friday, Oct. 13 

This U.S. Army Corps of Engineers program provides a temporary covering of blue plastic sheeting to help reduce further damage to property until permanent repairs can be made. Eligible homeowners have until Oct. 13 to apply for the assistance and complete the Right of Entry (ROE) form that allows government employees and contractors onto their property to assess damage and install a temporary covering. A list of open ROE locations can be found on the USACE Jacksonville District websites at www.saj.usace.army.mil/BlueRoof orwww.saj.usace.army.mil/blueroof_espanol/ and at 888-ROOF-BLU (888-766-3258).  Information is provided in both English and Spanish. To date, 5,131 temporary roofs have been installed.

Florida Crisis Cleanup: Sunday, Oct. 15

Several Florida voluntary relief agencies have been staffing a free hotline for debris removal and home cleanup after the recent severe weather. All services are free, but service is not guaranteed due to the overwhelming need. Survivors needing assistance with home cleanup may call: 800-451-1954 through Oct. 15.

Disaster Unemployment Assistance: Tuesday, Oct. 31

You may be eligible for unemployment assistance if you have become unemployed as a result of Hurricane Irma, are not eligible for regular state unemployment insurance and need unemployment benefits and re-employment services. The deadline to apply for this assistance is Oct. 31.

Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program: Tuesday, Oct. 31

This program provides short-term, interest-free loans in amounts up to $50,000 for small businesses that experienced physical or economic damage during Hurricane Irma. The deadline to apply for this assistance is Oct. 31.

Request for Public Assistance (RPA)Sunday, Nov. 5

FEMA provides grants so that state, tribal, territorial and local governments, and certain eligible private nonprofit organizations can quickly respond to and recover from effects of Hurricane Irma. Eligible applicants are reimbursed for disaster-related costs for emergency response, debris removal and permanent work such as repairs or replacements of schools, roads, bridges and other public infrastructure. The Florida Division of Emergency Management requests that applications for reimbursement under this program be made by Nov. 5. Requests received by that date will then be forwarded to FEMA on or before FEMA’s Nov. 10 deadline. To date, 700 requests for reimbursement have been received.

Individual Assistance: Thursday, Nov. 9

Individuals may be eligible for FEMA assistance for rent, temporary housing and home repairs to primary residences, as well as funding for other serious disaster-related needs. The deadline to apply for this assistance is Nov. 9. Nearly $740 million has been approved to help Floridians recover, and nearly 2.4 million registrations have been received.

The quickest way to apply for federal assistance is online at www.disasterassistance.gov. Survivors may also apply by phone at 800-621-3362 (Voice, 711 or VS) or 800-462-7585 (TTY). Due to high demand, lines may be busy. Please be patient, and try calling in the morning or evening when call volume may be lower. The FEMA helpline numbers 800-621-3362
(Voice, 711 or VS) 
or 800-462-7585 (TTY) are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. (ET), seven days a week until further notice.

U.S. Small Business Administration Low-Interest LoansThursday, Nov. 9

Next to insurance, the U.S. Small Business Administration is the primary source of money for long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. If you apply for disaster assistance with FEMA, you may be referred to the SBA for additional assistance. The filing deadline for physical property damage applications through the SBA is Nov. 9. The filing deadline for economic injury applications through the SBA is June 11. To date, SBA has approved 1,300 loans for more than $47.5 million in Florida.

Immediate Foreclosure Relief: Saturday, Dec. 9

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has granted a 90-day moratorium on foreclosures and forbearance on foreclosures of Federal Housing Administration-insured home mortgages in Florida. This moratorium expires for Florida survivors Dec. 9.

Transitional Sheltering Assistance

This FEMA sheltering program may assist you if you are unable to return to your pre-disaster primary residence because your home is either uninhabitable or inaccessible. TSA provides disaster survivors with a paid short-term stay in a hotel or motel. If you have received this assistance, you need to keep track of your own checkout date using these options:

  • Go online if you have established an account at www.DisasterAssistance.gov
  • Call the FEMA Helpline (800-621-3362)
  • Check your email and text messages for notification —if you signed up for these when you registered
  • Visit a Disaster Recovery Center and ask staff to check your date

Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP)

If you have losses due to Hurricane Irma, you may be eligible for supplemental nutritional assistance through a program funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture called D-SNAP. The program is known in Florida as the Food for Florida Disaster Food Assistance Program. The initial application, site locations, dates and times are available on the Food for Florida website. Find your county site location on the Food for Florida (FFF) website: www.myflfamilies.com/FFF.  If you do not live or work in the county hosting the FFF site, you may be asked to wait until your county opens. Applicants whose counties have closed may try to come to another county site, but should expect long lines and extended wait times.

NFIP Grace Period Extension for Policy Renewals 

National Flood Insurance Policies with an expiration date of August 7, 2017, through October 6, 2017 are eligible for a grace-period extension. Payment for those policies must be received within 120 days of the policy expiration. The NFIP cannot pay a claim for a flood loss that occurs after a policy expiration date unless the policyholder’s insurance company receives the payment in full for renewal on or before the last day of the grace period.

For more recovery information, visit www.FEMA.gov/IrmaFL, or follow us @FEMARegion4 on Twitter and on FEMA’s Facebook page.

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Hurricane Debris Pick-up in Brevard County

Check this link  http://www.brevardfl.gov/solidwaste to see updates daily on where hurricane debris will be collected in Brevard County.

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Affordable Artisan Creations Fill the Street during 16th Annual Indialantic Craft Festival

Summertime Craft Showcase Returns during 16th Annual Indialantic Craft Festival July 8 – 9

Summer festival brings seasonal green market offerings, affordable handmade in the U.S.A. crafts for locals and residents

WHAT:           16th Annual Indialantic (Melbourne) Craft Festival

WHEN:           Saturday, July 8 and Sunday, July 9 from 10 am to 4 pm    

WHERE:         James H. Nance Park

Navigational Address: 201 N. Miramar Avenue, Indialantic, FL 32903

COST:             Free and open to the public

WEBSITE:      www.artfestival.com

CONTACT:     info@artfestival.com or 561-746-6615

CONTACT INFORMATION:  info@artfestival.com or 561-746-6615

 The snowbirds are officially gone, and residents of Indialantic can enjoy the lazy days of summer during the return of the 16th Annual Indialantic Craft Festival. This annual tradition includes summer green market wares, thousands of hand-made-in-the-U.S.A. artisan-created pottery, jewelry, paintings, and more – all without the high-season crowds. Featuring more than 75 craft artisans from around the country, this two-day free event takes place from 10 am to 4 pm Saturday and Sunday.

The popular, outdoor craft festival offers a chance for residents to peruse and shop for practical and whimsical works of quality, handmade art while enjoying the beautiful Florida weather. Pets on leashes are always welcome to join their human companions as they stroll through the festival, which includes a full greenmarket of live plants, handmade soaps, delicious edibles and more. Adding to the pleasure of the outing, patrons can meet the artisans behind the works and discover the techniques and inspirations behind each creation. 

 Information At-A-Glance:

Juried outdoor craft showcase

Original crafts – Handmade in America

Unique and affordable gift items

Prices set to suit all budgets – ranging from as little as $15 to $3,000

Crafters hand-selected from hundreds of applicants

All crafters on site for duration of festival

Vast array of artistic media: including folk art, pottery, personalized gifts, handmade clothing, basket weaving, beaded utensils, candles, cork assemblage, fabric design, fiber quilts, fused wax & glass, hair accessories, handbags & accessories, handmade cards, leather, mosaic, wood, painted wood, plaster craft, stained glass

Green Market – exotic live plants, handmade soaps, savory dips, and gourmet sauces.

 About American Craft Endeavors:

American Craft Endeavors (ACE) produces some of the nation’s most exciting high-end juried craft shows in many of Florida’s vibrant downtown areas and popular tourist destinations including the Downtown Dunedin Art and Craft Festivals (Dunedin, FL), the Siesta Fiesta Craft Festival (Sarasota, FL) and the Downtown Stuart Craft Festivals (Stuart, FL) among others. The group’s founders personally select unique, culture rich cities for their show locations providing a complete outdoor experience unmatched by other festivals.  All crafters are hand-selected from hundreds of applicants in order to ensure a superior event featuring diverse art media and the highest quality of original handmade crafts.  

 For additional information on the Craft Festival and other American Craft Endeavors craft shows, visit www.artfestival.com or call 561-746-6615.

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How To Stay Young (At Least In Spirit) When You’re Retired

Mohr Keet of South Africa bungee jumped when he was 96, landing himself in the Guinness Board of World Records.

Yuichiro Miura of Japan climbed Mount Everest when he was 80.

Not everyone in the golden years of life will attempt and accomplish such extraordinary feats, but most people can take steps to keep themselves young – at least in spirit – when they reach retirement.

Unfortunately, for many people retirement planning remains fixated on finances, so when the big day arrives they’re not quite ready to segue into life’s new chapter, says Ann Vanderslice (www.annvanderslice.com), president and CEO of Retirement Planning Strategies, which specializes in advising federal workers about their benefits.

“After you’ve planned for the money, there is still anxiety about retirement,” she says. “You don’t know what it’s like to not work and so there is that emotional part of retirement you need to manage. Sometimes people aren’t ready in any way, shape or form.”

She says a few ways to hang onto a little youthful exuberance while aging gracefully in retirement include:

• Be a lifelong learner. Making the effort to learn about new things keeps our brains young. Read something you wouldn’t normally read. Sit in on a lecture that a college opens to the public. “Some of my clients mention they took classes in philosophy or in a foreign language,” Vanderslice says. “It’s proven that those who are lifelong learners have a greater sense of optimism and a lower chance of dementia.”
• See the world – or at least some of it. There are no doubt plenty of places you haven’t ventured out to, some close by and others far away. Traveling and enjoying new experiences is a great way to keep you feeling young and enthusiastic about life, Vanderslice says, whether you head to a state park just an hour’s drive away or you board a plane bound for Paris. “Part of the fun of traveling is deciding where you want to go,” Vanderslice says. “The sky should be the limit.” Don’t eliminate anything from your initial list just because of expense, she says. You might be able to find bargains, and because you’re retired you can travel any time you want, which allows you go in the off season when prices are lower.
• Remember your doctor’s advice. Activities such as enrolling in a college class can help keep you mentally young, but you want your body to cooperate, too. “We’re always looking for that magic bullet, the easy and quick way to feeling younger,” Vanderslice says. “The truth is that those things your doctor tells you – exercise, eat a healthy diet, get the appropriate amount of sleep – are about as close to a magic bullet as you’re going to get.”

“People think that money is the most important aspect of retirement, but it’s really No. 2,” Vanderslice says. “You can have more than enough money, but if you aren’t healthy or doing the things you enjoy, the money won’t matter.”

About Ann Vanderslice

Ann Vanderslice (www.annvanderslice.com), president and CEO of Retirement Planning Strategies, helps federal employees understand their benefits, maximize the value of their benefits, and plan for retirement, as well as organize income planning and IRA distributions. Vanderslice holds the Registered Financial Consultant designation from the International Association of Registered Financial Consultants and the Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor designation from the College for Financial Planning. She is author of “Fedtelligence 2.0 – The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Your Federal Benefits.”

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Are Women Prepared For Life Alone As They Age?

The trends are clear – as women age the odds are they will be living alone, largely because of either divorce or widowhood.

What may be less clear for many of them is whether they are prepared for that life alone – both emotionally and financially, says Susan L. Hickey, a financial professional at Your Own Retirement LLC (www.yourownretirement.com/womansworth).

“Although both men and women could live three or four decades in retirement, it’s more likely for women because they have longer life expectancies,” Hickey says. “But they also often have less in savings, and smaller or no pensions, so their longevity can work for them and against them.”

Almost half (46 percent) of women who are 75 or older live alone, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Community Living.

But women, many of whom are heads of households, don’t always do a good job of planning for their retirements because they spend so much of their time thinking about the needs of others – their children, their spouses, their aging parents, Hickey says.

“They need to realize that their happiness and security in their later years can hinge on so many things, and not just their savings,” she says. “So many factors come into play.”

Hickey says some mistakes women make in planning for retirement, and what they can do to correct those mistakes, include:

  • Failing to participate in planning. Many women traditionally have left the retirement planning to their husbands and that’s a mistake, Hickey says. Women should be actively involved. They need to understand their financial situation, what would happen if their spouse dies and where all the important papers are kept. When a meeting happens with a financial professional, they should be part of that and help make the decisions.
  • Underestimating how long they will live. For some reason, many women have trouble imagining just how long retirement might last. Life expectancy for women in the United States is about 81, and that’s an average. Many women will live into their 90s and some will pass 100. When planning and saving, women need to consider that they might still be living 30 or 40 years after they retire.
  • Failing to protect their health. Maintaining your general health and well being is important because medical costs can eat into retirement money, Hickey says. The nest egg that someone thought would be more than sufficient can start disappearing quickly when there are significant medical issues. Women need to make sure they get exercise, eat healthy meals and keep up with those doctor visits.

“So much of this is connected,” Hickey says. “When women feel that they have a good financial plan in place, they are more likely to feel secure and that’s good for both their physical health and their emotional health.”

About Susan L. Hickey

Susan L. Hickey (www.yourownretirement.com/womansworth) is a financial professional at Your Own Retirement, LLC. She helps guide clients, many of which are single women or female heads of households, on the many facets of planning for retirement. Because of her advocacy Sue combines numerous elements of retirement income planning through the use of insurance products, which includes strategies for claiming social security benefits, Medicare costs, long-term care concerns as well as traditional income needs.  She holds her life and health insurance licenses, and has earned the distinguished Retirement Income Certified Professional designation.

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Barefoot Bay’s Yim Kwan “Kimi” Cheng, Certified Government Finance Officer

 Kimi Cheng has earned one of the most prestigious finance designations possible, namely becoming a Certified Government Finance Officer.   Chairman Diana presented Kimi a Certificate of Achievement after we are through giving out the milestone awards (of which Kimi received her 5-year award also).  Below is the text of the certification. 

In order to qualify to enroll in CGFO Program, the following must be met:

Active member of FGFOA

Have either a Bachelor Degree in Accounting, Business Administration, Public Administration and a minimum of three years government work experience within the last five years OR a Bachelor Degree from an accredited college-level institution and a minimum five year government work experience within the last seven years and 20 hours CPE training sessions

A minimum of two letters of recommendations

Once the candidate is enrolled in CGFO program, the candidate must pass an open book Code of Ethics for Public Officers and Employees Examination within 30 days and then accept the FGFOA Code of Ethics.

The candidate then has five years to pass all five exams in five subject areas (Accounting & Financial Reporting, Municipal Budgeting, Treasury Management, Debt Administration and Financial Administration). A minimum score of 75% is required for a passing score. The exam is given twice a year, one in Spring and one is Fall. 

After certification, the candidate requires to have 80 hours of CPEs every two years. 

Currently, there are approximately 2,800 active FGFOA members and only 470 (16.79%) of them obtained CGFO Designation. 

Barefoot Bay Recreation District Certificate of Accomplishment

Yim Kwan “Kimi” Cheng, Certified Government Finance Officer

WHEREAS, Ms. Cheng joined BBRD on April 19, 2012, was promoted to Acting Finance Manager on April 21, 2014 and was appointed to permanent Finance Manager on July 7, 2014; and

WHEREAS, Ms. Cheng inherited a Finance Department with annual audit findings with a lack of confidence from residents and restored confidence with multiple clean audit reports and professional work; and

WHEREAS, Ms. Cheng entered the Certified Government Finance Officer program by passing the Public Officers and Employees Code of Ethics exam; and

WHEREAS, Ms. Cheng achieved high marks in all five subject area exams of Accounting & Financial Reporting, Municipal Budgeting, Treasury Management, Debt Administration and Financial Administration; and

WHEREAS, Ms. Cheng has now earned the title of Certified Government Finance Officer, of which less than 17% of the approximately 2,800 Florida Government Finance Officers Association members have attained;

NOW, the Board of Trustees of Barefoot Bay Recreation District hereby awards Ms. Cheng this

Certificate of Accomplishment

For her outstanding performance as Finance Manager and to recognize her professional designation of Certified Government Finance Officer which has brought great honor and sense of accomplishment for her while achieving respect and admiration from the Board of Trustees and homeowners.

PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Board of Trustees of Barefoot Bay Recreation District this 12th day of May, 2017

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

BAREFOOT BAY RECREATION DISTRICT

BAREFOOT BAY, FLORIDA

BY: ______________________

Steve Diana, Chairman

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Hurricane Preparedness: 6 mistakes people are making during power outages

We want to make sure those affected by hurricane season know how to stay safe. Here are some simple mistakes people are making that could cost them in the long run.

1- Opening a fridge or freezer. Opening your fridge or freezer during a power outage will let valuable cold air out. Keep them closed to maximize on your chilling capacity.

2- Using your backup generator indoors. Backup generators give off toxic carbon monoxide fumes. These can be deadly to you and your family members. Keep these generators outside the home, including the garage.

3- Not unplugging appliances. Most people forget all about unplugging appliances and devices, and when the electricity finally turns back on this can cause dangerous spikes and surges that can ruin the appliances or devices.

4- Using candles as a main lighting source. Candles can be a huge fire hazard, especially when you put young children, pets, etc. in the mix. There are many other options, like flashlights, that do the trick without the risk.

5- Eating expired foods. While a freezer can stay cold for up to 48 hours (depending on capacity, model, etc.) after losing power, it is still important to take extra caution when consuming frozen or perishable foods. 

6- Not putting your phone in airplane mode. While extended periods without power can be quite boring, and you may be tempted to play Candy Crush until you drain every last drop of battery power from your phone,  it’s important to keep it charged and usable for as long as possible in case the power outage turns into an emergency situation. Putting your phone in airplane mode will extend your phone’s battery life, while turning it off until you need it will conserve the most battery power.

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