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Published by Vero Beach 32963 Media, 2017-03-16 14:32:51

03/16/2017 ISSUE 11


Mame’s the word at Riverside’s
Premiere Benefit Gala. P12
Sky’s the limit for
Gifford achievers. P26
Everything’s on sail at the

Martin Memorial Regatta. P30

Lagoon loses its Consultant tells
devoted champion IRMC it must
in Paul Dritenbas change to survive

Staff Writer Staff Writer

The death of Paul Driten- The accelerated time frame
bas last week, at age 65, has of Indian River Medical Cen-
left the Indian River Lagoon ter’s examination of its own
without one of its most de- future made for some painful
voted and outspoken cham- moments last week as the col-
pions. The architect, fishing laborative committee charged
guide and former FIND com- with that study endured two
missioner died at his home in rigorous public critiques in a
Vero Beach, with his family 48-hour time span.
by his side, following an ex-
tended illness. The admonitions ranged
from hyperlocal, as when Hos-
CONTINUED ON PAGE 7 pital District trustee Michael
Weiss told a taxpayer group’s
Where will additional cars park? A crowded late-afternoon scene on Ocean Drive last Friday. PHOTO BY GORDON RADFORD luncheon on Wednesday that
the emergency room on his
MY New restaurant building proposed for last two visits was “dirty”; to
VERO the assessment of nationally-
Ocean Drive would compound parking woes known healthcare consultant
Jamie Orlikoff, who flew in
Bill would strip power BY RAY MCNULTY Restaurant to go between the two buildings by Parent Construction, the from Seattle to speak to IRMC
from Vero and county Staff Writer 2,685-square-foot restau- leaders on Friday.
ing lot sandwiched between rant would seat 143 cus-
BY LISA ZAHNER At 1:30 p.m. today, the Vero the Cooper & Company and tomers, 42 of them on a Orlikoff said IRMC was in
Staff Writer Beach Planning and Zoning M Maison boutiques, across covered outdoor patio that no-man’s-land now, under
Board will consider a site plan from Bobby’s Restaurant & runs along Ocean Drive. taxpayer ownership through
A bill filed that would pre- submitted by a local con- Lounge.
vent local governments from struction company on behalf And very strong rumor has CONTINUED ON PAGE 6
passing any new business reg- of a Miami-area investment According to the sche- it this building is not going to
ulations after July 1, and that group for an upscale restau- matic drawing presented house a new addition to the Reckless driving seen
would wipe clean all but state- rant with outdoor seating on to neighboring merchants local restaurant scene, but be in Shores car fatality
approved regulations in 2020, Ocean Drive. a new home for a long-time
island favorite, The Tides. BY LISA ZAHNER
CONTINUED ON PAGE 8 Sounds at first blush like Neither owner and chef Le- Staff Writer
a great addition to Ocean anne Kelleher nor her partner
Drive, right? But then you Claudia Arens returned calls Before a classic Corvette
learn they are proposing to or email messages. struck a cement light pole
build this restaurant in what Thursday morning on A1A,
is now the street-front park- If the restaurant is built, killing the driver who was the
lone occupant of the car, wit-
CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 nesses told police they noticed


March 16, 2017 Volume 10, Issue 11 Newsstand Price $1.00 Crowds turn out
for Under the Oaks
News 1-10 Faith 81 Pets 80 TO ADVERTISE CALL art show. Page 18
Arts 37-46 Games 59-61 Real Estate 83-96 772-559-4187
Books 58 Health 63-69 St Ed’s 70
Dining 74 Insight 47-62 Style 71-73 FOR CIRCULATION
Editorial 56 People 11-36 Wine 75 CALL 772-226-7925

© 2017 Vero Beach 32963 Media LLC. All rights reserved.

2 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


My Vero which seem to increase each year, and parking situation before they approve bles-based firm known as Sony In-
despite the fact the restaurant would something like this.” vestments Real Estate Inc., which lists
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 eliminate a dozen and a half park- Jose Valle as its president – also owns
ing places, city planners have recom- Actually, Vero Beach Planning Direc- the buildings immediately north and
most if not all of those customers will mended the board approve the proj- tor Tim McGarry said his department south of the proposed restaurant site.
travel to the location in vehicles that ect. did analyze the proposed restaurant’s
need to be parked in an area that al- impact on the Ocean Drive parking Mistretta, one of Sony’s tenants,
ready lacks the spaces needed to ac- “I don’t know what they’re think- situation and found no reason to op- said the firm bought the building that
commodate the growing number ing,” said Caesar Mistretta, owner of pose the project. houses his gallery about a year ago
of shoppers, diners and others who the J.M. Stringer Gallery, located in and recently purchased the building
come to the Central Beach business the building immediately north of the McGarry said planners used some- on the south side of the lot, “so they
district to socialize, especially during proposed restaurant. thing called a “shared parking calcula- have a right to build in between.”
our busy season. tion matrix” that factors in the busi-
“Where are these people going to ness hours of the tenants who occupy Probably, that’s why Sony bought
Yet, despite the fact that Vero Beach park? There’s not enough parking the adjacent buildings and allows their the second building.
officials still have no answer for Ocean now,” asked Mistretta, who is presi- parking spaces to count towards the
Drive’s existing parking challenges, dent Vero’s Beachside Retailers Asso- number needed by the restaurant. By owning both buildings, Sony also
ciation. “The city needs to address the owns the parking lots behind them –
The property owner – a Coral Ga- and the 87 spaces needed to meet the
city’s parking requirements, which are
based on the proposed restaurant’s
square footage, not including the
380-square-foot outdoor dining area.

Apparently, the shared-parking ma-
trix also allowed the city to include, at
least on a percentage basis, the on-
street spaces immediately in front of
the buildings Sony owns.

“They’re counting the parking lots
behind the two buildings and the
spaces on the street in front of them,
but the tenants use those spaces, too,”
said Melinda Cooper, owner of Coo-
per & Company. “How many times are
they going to count them?”

Certainly, there will be some over-
lap, especially during the late-after-
noon hours when early-bird diners
arrive. Also, some of these boutiques
and galleries hold special events.

And what if the new restaurant
owner can’t pay the hefty rent Sony
likely will be seeking for such a prime
location simply by serving dinner and
drinks, and needs to open for lunch?
The city won’t be able to prevent it.

That’s the problem with formulas
and matrixes. Too often, they work
only in theory, under fixed conditions.
They don’t take into account human

If it’s more convenient to park on
the street, that’s what people will do –
no matter how many spaces might be
available behind the building, where,
unless the restaurant provides an al-
ternative, employees’ cars will occupy

The city failed to sufficiently ad-
dress parking issues when the Vero
Beach Hotel & Spa opened – nobody
anticipated employees parking on
the streets, taking up precious spaces
needed by the nearby merchants.

But why does the city use square
footage – and not seating capacity – in
its formula to determine a restaurant’s
parking requirements?

“It’s kind of crazy,” said Ana Ismael,
owner of M Maison. “They’re going to
add all these cars and there’s no place
to put them. Can you imagine another
70 or 80 cars out there?

“We rented these places knowing
we had the parking lot in the back,”

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 3


she added. “Now, we don’t know if requirements, and even waive them,” vember, could not be reached, though Bobby’s, the popular local restaurant and
we’ll still have those spaces, or for how O’Connor said. “So you’ve got the vi- he owns a home on South Beach. bar that would compete with the new
long.” sion plan on one side and the parking place for diners and especially parking.
issue on the other. It’s going to be inter- However, the man who could be
Ismael and other tenants also are esting.” most affected by Sony’s plan, Bob- “We’re not talking about adding an-
concerned that traffic and parking by McCarthy, said the city would be other small boutique or gallery that
spaces will be blocked by trucks de- For the record: Paul Parent, owner “short-sighted” if it permits the con- would have two or three employees,”
livering food and beverages to the res- of Parent Construction, refused to struction of the new restaurant with- McCarthy said. “We’re talking about a
taurant throughout the work day. comment on the project. Valle, whose out first providing a solution to the mega-anchor with 25 to 30 employees
name appeared as the property owner Ocean Drive parking shortage. for every shift, plus the customers. It’s
They also wonder whether the res- on the original application filed in No-
taurant will cook with gas, which McCarthy is the longtime owner of CONTINUED ON PAGE 4
would require the installation of a
tank, which could impact their insur- Exclusively John’s Island
ances rates.
This exceptionally renovated 5BR/4.5BA family retreat is a must-see! Custom
Then there’s the daily impact of be- finishes, classic architecture and spectacular golf views compliment the 6,466±
ing next door to a restaurant that will GSF home designed for indoor/outdoor living. The new, custom, gourmet island
dispose of its trash in a dumpster that kitchen is a chef’s delight. Enviable features include lush tropical landscaping,
would emit odors and attract rodents. saltwater pool, billiards room, new luxurious 1st floor master suite, side garden
with fountain, and upper level guest bedroom ensuites with tree-top views.
“There are many issues to talk 561 Sea Oak Drive : $2,975,000
about,” Ismael said. “Parking is just
the most obvious one.” three championship golf courses : 17 har-tru courts : beach club : squash
health & fitness center : pickleball : croquet : vertical equity membership
The tenants say they want to be fair
to their landlord, who, by building a 772.231.0900 : Vero Beach, FL :
restaurant, probably would increase
foot traffic in the area which theo-
retically might boost their business-
es. They don’t want to go to war with

But they don’t want an already bad
parking problem to be made worse.

“We’re very upset about this, but
we’re not opposed to a restaurant,”
Mistretta said. “The construction
could be a problem for a while, but it’s
the parking situation that needs to be

“We’ve been talking about this for a
long time and nobody seems to know
how to solve the problem.”

As you might expect, many of the
nearby business owners were plan-
ning to attend today’s meeting to ex-
press their concerns and challenge
the planners’ recommendation.

McGarry said he’s expecting some
fireworks, which is why he put the
matter before the board rather than
simply approve the site-plan amend-
ment “administratively,” as he other-
wise would’ve done.

“I’ve been through a couple of these
parking things before,” he said. “Un-
less we can find a way to create more
parking over there – and that means
somebody’s got to pay for it – it’s going
to remain an issue for us.

“But this application meets all of our
criteria,” he added. “That’s why we’re
recommending the board approve it.”

City Manager Jim O’Connor said he,
too, will attend the meeting, so he will
be prepared to advise the City Council
in the likely event that someone ap-
peals the board’s decision.

It’s somewhat ironic, he said, that
this matter has come up at a time
when the city is revising its vision
plan, which includes a greater effort
to attract and encourage more dining
and entertainment establishments
along Ocean Drive.

“Under our vision plan, we can
make some concessions to parking

4 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


My Vero tral Beach business district, particu-
larly along Ocean Drive – so that resi-
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3 dents and visitors can fully enjoy our
seaside slice of paradise?
going to be a nightmare.
“They let the hotel be built without Maybe the time has come.
There are now convenient on-street
sufficient parking,” he continued. “Now parking systems that allow people to
they’re doing it again. I’ve been here for use credit and debit cards. Perhaps the
35 years, watching the landscape along city, even the county, could devise spe-
Ocean Drive change, and the parking cial cards for residents, who would get
problem has only gotten worse. a hometown discount. There are plen-
ty of pay-to-park options to consider.
“It’s definitely going to impact me, But logic suggests the cost to park
because I don’t have enough parking must be high enough to discourage
for my restaurant now,” he added. “I hotel and restaurant workers, as well as
hear it from my customers all the time, all-day beachgoers, from taking up the
and the city knows there’s a problem, spaces needed for daytime commerce.
but nobody does anything about it.” Is $5 per hour – for non-residents – too
high? How about $2 per hour for those
That’s because there is no easy fix. of us who live here? Parking after 6 p.m.,
A free, park-and-ride shuttle from when most of the shops along Ocean
Riverside Park that ceased operation Drive are closed, would remain free.
in January attracted too few riders to “I think most of the merchants would
justify the cost. There’s no room to be OK with metered parking,” Cooper
build municipal lots. There’s no rea- said. “What have we got to lose? People
sonably priced real estate the city aren’t able to park here now.”
could buy and build a parking garage. Forget what the city’s matrix says
And, for years, the City Council has and use your common sense. There’s
rejected the idea of installing street- already a severe, in-season parking
side meters and requiring people to shortage along Ocean Drive. How can
pay to park. adding a new, 143-seat restaurant not
“It has come up in the past,” McGar- make spaces tougher to find?
ry said, “but they say it’s not ‘Vero’ to Do the math.
have parking meters.” Those numbers don’t lie. 
Is it “Vero” to not offer convenient
places to park – especially in the Cen-

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 5


Shores car fatality the Florida Highway Patrol for investi- male, John Pierce Keller Jr., lived in the Corvette slammed into the base of the
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 gation, and forensic evidence typically Bethel Isle community just west of the electric pole was David Albury, a secu-
takes many weeks to process. But ini- Village Beach Market. rity guard from Sea Colony who called
the victim driving recklessly through tially, Shores Public Safety officers are in the crash at 7:40 a.m.
Indian River Shores. chalking this one up to the driver los- The incident report released by the
ing control of his car on the highway. Shores Public Safety Department in re- Albury attempted to get the car door
The crash has been turned over to sponse to a public records request said open but could not. Richard Dent, an
The deceased 51-year-old white the first person to spot the black 1972

6 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Shores car fatality of Coastal Behavior Analysis in Vero pital. As the hospital grew, the District Because the hospital is taxpayer
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5 Beach and worked with the Indian Riv- took it over, then decided it was too owned, a separation of District and
er County School District, counseling much to manage, and leased the hos- hospital – enabling the hospital to be
off-duty paramedic with Indian Riv- special needs children for more than a pital to a separate non-profit corpora- bought by a private or non-profit hos-
er County Fire Rescue, was the first decade. tion – a neither-here-nor-there gov- pital group – would require a public
medical responder to arrive and con- erning scenario that Orlikoff equated vote, Orlikoff said.
clude the subject had been killed on Rosell said officers on the scene, to “being a little bit pregnant.”
impact. upon a cursory examination of the Remaining independent, on the
area surrounding the crash, reported The lease made both entities sub- other hand, would require raising op-
Two men walking their dogs along no obvious tire marks that would have ject to Government-in-the-Sunshine erational funding through some com-
A1A reported seeing the vehicle speed- indicated Keller had skidded or tried to laws, a situation that in Orlikoff’s view, bination of philanthropy and higher
ing prior to the crash. Robert Hobbs stop. Weather was clear that morning handicaps hospital management. taxes, the latter a suggestion that drew
said he was walking his dog around with no rain or wet pavement.  a room’s worth of eyerolls.
7:20 and “observed the vehicle travel- “When people are watching, it’s
ing at a high rate of speed, and mak- IRMC told it must change hard to say ‘what the hell is going on?’” “You’d have to have a community
ing several U-turns on A1A.” Clarence CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 said Orlikoff, in a data-dense, humor- that says, I want my own medical fa-
Lake reported to police that he saw the packed session that lasted more than cility and I want it bad to enough that I
Corvette “driving like a bat out of hell” the Hospital District but leased to a three hours in a meeting room at the want higher taxes,” says Orlikoff.
and then heard a “boom” at 7:34 a.m., private not-for-profit corporation, county administration building.
but did not see the crash itself. and warned that this public-private Orlikoff told the group Friday that
hybrid is utterly unworkable and must At the same time, he said, no pro- these days District-owned hospitals
The car was not much more than a be dismantled immediately for the spective buyer or even association fail at a higher rate than any other type
pile of rubble after it struck the heavy hospital to survive. would want to touch such a compli- of hospital.
concrete light pole, which was knocked cated scenario as it stands now. He
ajar by the impact. Outside the meet- Through both meetings, the collab- impersonated the newcomer’s reac- “The field is going through a period
ing, Chief Rich Rosell said power had orative committee held its collective tion: “Wait a minute – that structure is of revolutionary change, which is put-
not been interrupted and that it would head up high, soldiering on through insane.” ting tremendous pressure on the tra-
take some time for crews to right the what could well become an even ditional business model and in fact is
pole. He could not release Keller’s harsher, more polarizing assessment. “Do you have the ability to join a encouraging some people to question
identity at the time as police were still system with your current structure? whether or not there will be hospitals
trying to locate next of kin. The Indian River Hospital District No. I don’t see how,” he said. in this country at all, whether hospi-
was formed in the 1950s to help run tals are like community stables of the
Keller, who held a master’s degree what was then a privately-owned hos- The search for a new hospital CEO is 1850s. Because of technology and eco-
from Barry University, was the founder also affected by the ambivalent struc- nomic change, they may not be neces-
ture of the public Hospital District sary going forward.”
overseeing a hospital with private cor-
porate management. He pointed out that there are 20

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 7


percent fewer hospitals now than in dent, you have to look at yourself in the ing IRMC CEO Jeff Susi in the audience, Paul Dritenbas
1980, even though the population has mirror and say, ‘We are a decaying as- Hospital District vice-chair Weiss and
grown by 30 million. set, and we’re never going to be worth former District Trustee Val Zudans, an CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
more than we are today.’ Because if I’m ophthalmologist, were relentless in
Orlikoff was equally forceful about a big system and I can’t get you, there their criticism of hospital management. “Paul had a big heart for the Indian
the need to act fast, as he factored in the are other ways to get into the market. River Lagoon and he will be missed,”
strategy of the incoming Steward Health Once I do that, you have no value.” “We have an obligation to make County Commissioner Tim Zorc wrote
System, the Massachusetts-based chain sure healthcare is going to be provided in an email to Vero Beach 32963.
which is acquiring IRMC’s competitor, Any course of action approved by in this county,” said Weiss. “We’re at
Sebastian River Medical Center. the collaborative committee would a point where the hospital is in dire Dritenbas was a true environmen-
have to win the approval of all three straits. We should consider bankrupt- talist, who walked the talk when it
“I can promise you they are going boards involved with the hospital cy. What happens in bankruptcy? We came to issues he believed in. This was
to start recruiting physicians as soon before going to a public vote. Those try to have a new company come in to the thread that ran though virtually
as they get here,” he said. Indepen- boards include the Hospital District, be much more patient-centric and try every aspect of his life: a passion for
dent physicians – those not already in IRMH Inc., the non-profit corporation to rebuild the confidence in the com- the local environment coupled with a
the employment of the hospital – are that manages the hospital, and the munity. We have to go back to being a broad knowledge of the lagoon and its
a source of revenue because they can Hospital Foundation. community hospital and not have any fragile ecosystem, and a deep concern
choose where to send patients. ideas of grandeur.” that the loss of seagrass in the lagoon,
The District Board would have veto if not stopped, would lead to the eco-
Faces brightened when Orlikoff said power. Weiss noted that he had once unsuc- logical collapse of the waterway that is
that just since the day before, six cli- cessfully requested a forensic audit of the economic and aesthetic lifeblood
ents had contacted him about the Vero “The District could stop a direction, the hospital. But as he himself pointed of the Treasure Coast.
hospital possibly going on the market. but it couldn’t move forward without out, any action requires the support of
the involvement of the hospital and four of the seven board members. Born in Bridgeport, Conn., Paul
“You’re leapfrog potential,” he said, the foundation,” said District trustee Ulrich Dritenbas came to Vero Beach
referring to the strategy of healthcare Allen Jones, a member of the collab- On the current board, Weiss would as a child. After graduating from Vero
systems wanting to get into the market orative committee. likely not find himself with majority Beach High School, he attended In-
here. “You give them a beachhead, and support on many of the criticisms he dian River Junior College and then
you can write your own ticket. That’s As Orlikoff pointed out, the entity voiced Wednesday. enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, serv-
still a possibility. But that possibility with the power to “destroy something ing his country during the turbulent
won’t be there in two to five years – the has all the power.” At the same time, Nevertheless, Marybeth Cunning- Vietnam era.
market won’t be there.” of the three boards, the District’s may ham, who chairs the District Board,
prove the most fractious. expressed a hope for board unity. When his tour ended, Dritenbas
“I really doubt you’ll be able to stand came home, returned to school and
alone,” Orlikoff said. “If you cannot ag- Witness the Indian River Taxpayers’ “We look forward to the support of
gressively identify and prosecute the Association luncheon Wednesday, two Dr. Zudans and Dr. Weiss,” she said. “I CONTINUED ON PAGE 8
strategy necessary to remain indepen- days before Orlikoff spoke. With retir- think we’re all on the same page.” 

14 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


12 13

The Art & Science
of Cosmetic Surgery

• Minimal Incision Lift for the
Face, Body, Neck & Brow
• Breast Augmentations & Reductions
• Post Cancer Reconstructions
• Chemical Peels • Botox
• Obagi Medical Products • Laser Surgery
• Liposculpture • Tummy Tucks
• Skin Cancer Treatments

Celebrating Over 25
Years in Vero Beach

3790 7th Terrace
Suite 101

Vero Beach, Florida


Ralph M. Rosato

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 15


14 15 16
18 19
17 21 22



8. Gail Williams, Charlotte Shea and Penny
de Young. 9. Judy and Allen Cornell.
10. Carol and Peter Coxhead with Valeria Catan.
11. Armund and Marie Ek. 12. Jon Moses with Jill
and Vinny Olmstead. 13. Helen Robertson and
Baerbel O’Haire. 14. Bob and Connie Ferguson with
Peter and Pat Thompson. 15. Don Henry, Carole
Brown, Wivi-Anne Weber and Mel Teetz. 16. Dave
and Sherry Brown with Laura and Rick McDermott.
17. Dick and Nancy Shoemate with Susan Kamer
and Michael Beecham. 18. Sharon Dixon and
Sherrie Davidson with Tom and Anna Bain Slater.
19. Jim Daverman, Susan and Michael Veysey
and Wendy Daverman. 20. Randy and Sandy Rolf
with Molly Seymour and Chips Feeley. 21. Susan
Levy with Harvey and Mary Struthers. 22. Kit and
Sue Barrow with Bryn Redman and Bob Barrett.
23. Christy and David Cottrell.

16 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Colorfully connecting for a cause at Girls Night Out

BY STEPHANIE LaBAFF cer Girls Night Out.
Staff Writer “I’ve always supported this event,

Sporting a rainbow of colors, the but this was the first time I was able
women of Orchid Island connected to attend,” said JoAnn Ricca, who
for a common cause last Monday fully embraced the mission and wel-
evening. JoAnn and Ed Ricca gra- comed guests with open arms. “It’s
ciously opened their home to more for a good cause, and there’s none
than 120 guests who attended the among us that doesn’t know some-
fourth annual Connecting for Can- one who hasn’t suffered from cancer.
I’m a big believer that you have to

Kay Falise, Michele Henry and Dorsey Seed. JoAnn Ricca, Marilyn Kinsella and Susan Daniels.

give back.” Committee members were
Nancy Cruce and Gerry Collins adorned in boas made by Kathy Dun-
lop, who once again created them
led the charge as founders of the an- in colors representing 27 different
nual ladies cancer fundraiser, having types of cancer. The boas will all be
realized that by working together, donated to the Infusion Center at the
members of the Orchid Island Golf IRMC Scully-Welsh Cancer Center.
and Country Club could truly make
a difference. “I am beyond honored to be a part
of Connecting for Cancer,” said Lori
Cruce explained that proceeds McCormick, IRMC administrative
from the event benefit the Pay-It- director of Oncology. “It benefits our
Forward Fund of the Indian River Pay-It-Forward program which helps
Medical Center Foundation. so many people in our community.”

“This helps those carefully And while the ladies were enjoying
screened in Indian River County themselves, the menfolk gathered at
needing financial assistance for their the Beach Club for a Boys Night Out,
cancer diagnosis and treatment,” she watching a showing of the movie
added. “Patton” and feasting on a meal they
referred to as “food their wives won’t
“It means so much to everyone let them eat.”
here, and everyone who has had or
may have cancer, no matter what “Girls Night Out has continually
kind,” said Nancy Higgins. brought together the largest gather-
ing of women ever in Orchid Island.
Guests enjoyed Pink Lady Cosmos The community has connected and
dispensed from a Breast Cancer Rib- has become invested in this project,”
bon fountain donated by Ice Pro, and shared Nance. “We have a lot of fun
bid on silent-auction items such as while helping others.”
jewelry and spa packages, artwork
and wine baskets. According to American Can-
cer Society statistics, an estimated
Additionally, Keena and Chris Clif- 1,685,210 new cancer cases were di-
ford sponsored a Sonoma vacation agnosed in 2016, with 595,690 peo-
at the Redwood Hill Vineyards and ple dying from cancer in the United
Donna Breadner offered a repeat fa- States alone. 
vorite, an Argentinian luncheon at
her oceanside home.

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 17


Lori McCormick and Bev Sanders.

Gloria Pappalardo and Carol Tintle. Carole Finck, Lynda Stinson and Ellen McGovern. Annette Lovell, Gerry Collins and Marian Chiesa.

Gladie Prol and Barbara Crosby. Diane Van Vliet and Barbara James. Jody Hedien and Colette Hedien.

Nancy Kelley, Penny Dolara and Judy Gibbons.

18 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Creative talent flows at Under the Oaks art show

Kathy and Steve Mulvey with Susan Reichhart. PHOTOS: DENISE RITCHIE Sandy and Randy Rolfe with Matt, Benjamin and Collin Rolfe. PHOTOS CONTINUED ON PAGE 20
Mary Jo Halbritter, Tina Nickle, Ted Halbritter and Andy Nickle.

BY MARY SCHENKEL artist Dawn Miller. “I don’t ever take ture, glass blowing and wood-carv-
it for granted. It’s a nationally com- ings. Some of this year’s more unusu-
Staff Writer petitive show. We’re always very glad al entries were new to the show, such
when we get that acceptance note.” as unique forged tables and lighting
A perennial favorite, the Vero Beach fixtures by blacksmith Luke Proctor
Art Club’s 66th annual Under the She credited the hard-working of Wisconsin. Another first-timer was
Oaks Fine Arts and Crafts Show this VBAC members for the show’s lasting Geoff Warner of Maine, designer and
past weekend once again drew huge success, adding, “These guys are all founder of Owl Furniture, handmade,
crowds of art aficionados volunteers and they’ve been working ergonomically-designed wooden
eager to see the very on it for months.” stools for optimal spinal alignment.
best works of more
than 200 artists. The show offered a full variety of “We’ve been here six weeks and this
artistic talents, including paintings is the last of five shows we’ve done.
“We have be- and photography, jewelry and sculp-
tween 600 and
700 artists Charlene and Larry Bowen with Nancy Tripp.
that apply ev-
ery year,” said coordinator. 2-D judges were Susan
Alicia Quinn, Archer and Katherine Pill, and 3-D
co-chair of the judges were Stefan Alexandres and
three-day event Carla Funk.
with Sue Dinenno
and Beth Fairchild. “We At an awards dinner Friday eve-
jury the entries and take 220; so less ning, 20 awards were presented in
than one-third are invited to partici- each of the two categories plus one
pate in the show. We try to get new overall for Best in Show. Additionally,
vendors but we don’t focus on that; three memorial awards were present-
about a third of the artists are new ed to VBAC members.
this year. I think we have a wider
range of artists this year and a bit “I’m very lucky to get in; I think this
more glass.” is my eighth time,” said local pastel

“This year the awards are designat-
ed 2-D and 3-D rather than individ-
ual categories,” said Liz Mayo, judge


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Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 19


We think it’s probably the best; this is “We check to see that the work they show from a different perspective.” ing gold “sponsorship donor” stickers,
a great show,” said Warner. got juried in with is what they show, One change they made this year having made a donation to support
that the artists displaying are actu- the scholarships and school art sup-
“To me this is one of the best ones ally there and that pricing is visible. was inviting only local food vendors plies provided by the Art Club.
I’ve seen yet. There are some new peo- I’ve been doing this for years now; ev- to participate and, as a trio of friends
ple and it’s all very good quality,” said eryone has been extremely nice this from New Smyrna enjoyed their lunch “Some of the artists even thanked
local pottery artist Maria Sparsis, one year. It’s fun because you get to see the choices, they too commented on the us,” said Elaine Sellig. “I thought that
of three quality-control volunteers. quality of the show. All were sport- was very nice.” 

20 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


PHOTOS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 18 Piper Wolff, Alexa Stein and Samantha Silverman. Fern and Carol Mainville enjoy the artwork of Gary Love. Artist Robert Alan Hyde with Elaine and Stephen Cornish.
Larry Shubert and Melissa Grable with artist Witha Lacuesta.

Ellen Bale, Terri Lou Royse and Linda Wells. Judy Ralph, Larrry Goldstein and Suzanne McCombs. Tom Zegarski and Patty Almeida. Jahna Forfar and Tanya Black.

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 21


Thousands soak up nature’s wonders at EcoFest

vas and listened to the music of the Student artwork in the Making a together to try new and even adven-
River Rats and the Vero Beach Pipes Difference in MY World school con- turous activities in nature, all while
and Drums. test, Chalk Art and Fairchild Chal- also learning,” explained Molly
lenge was on display in all its color- Steinwald, ELC executive director.
“This is my first time trying to ful glory, showcasing the children’s “People don’t commit to protect
build a teepee, and I’m glad I don’t understanding of the human-nature things they aren’t comfortable or
have to live in one,” said Adrian Per- connection through art, science and familiar with. We need everyone to
ez, 12, who liked the fort building the written word. be on board in healing the relation-
station. “Everyone is learning about ship between people and the rest of
nature today, so they can learn how “The goal for this year’s EcoFest nature.” 
to make a healthy environment.” was to have people of all ages come


Lisa and Kaylin Dolajeck. PHOTOS: GORDON RADFORD

Staff Writer

More than 3,000 environmental-
ly-minded residents flocked to the
Environmental Learning Center to
discover their wild side two Sundays
ago at the 21st annual EcoFest. Once
there they learned that on any given
day visitors can discover native flora
and fauna at the 64-acre natural la-
goon island preserve, where spotting
an osprey, gopher turtle or dolphin
isn’t uncommon.

“The EcoFest is a great time
to showcase what our organiza-
tion does for the community,” said
Heather Stapleton, ELC education
director. “It’s an opportunity for us
to talk about the importance of the
Indian River Lagoon, environmental
education and nature.”

Paige Visser, an ELC volunteer and
mother of three, said she was drawn
to the ELC as a way to educate her
children about the environment.

“Every time I come here, even to-
day 10 years later, I learn something
new,” said Visser. “The EcoFest is a
popular event because you can touch
everything. That’s the thing about
the ELC. There are really no rules.”

In addition to the usual Discov-
ery Station Interactive Museum and
Touch Tank, children enjoyed rid-
ing in canoes and dip-netting in the
pond, and participated in eco-arts
and crafts, built forts, took a virtual
dolphin tour, lobbed seed bombs
and made smile clouds.

There was plenty to intrigue adults,
too, with workshops such as nature
photography, container gardening,
an introduction to birding and na-
ture journaling. Families could also
watch plein air artists capture the
beauty of their surroundings on can-

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 25


Bob Schlitt, Nancy Gollnick and Jaime Klekamp.

Randy Hamrick, Mary and Paul Williamson, and Troy Clemenzi.

Quinn and Melody Ipolito with Jackie Savell.

Teresa Wonka with Michael and Jodi Zorc. Johnny and Danielle Negherbon with Jeff Schlitt. Connie and Richard Young with Valerie MacMillan. Kelly Cornish and Laurie Niblock.

26 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Proof positive that sky’s the limit for Gifford achievers

BY STEPHANIE LaBAFF Jane Fleming and Freddie Woolfork. Joenisha Eristhene with Adam Bollinger. the National Junior Honor Society.
Staff Writer “GYAC has been very instrumental
other 31 on the waiting list. mom was right.
More than 140 supporters of the To illustrate the breadth of the im- “I really like GYAC because there in opening me up to endless possi-
Gifford Youth Achievement Center bilities,” said Arielle, sharing plans
had an opportunity to meet with a pact the organization has had on our are lots of teachers that can help to attend the Ambassador Leader-
few of the organization’s youth am- community, GYAC program partici- you,” said Joenisha. “The GYAC is re- ship Summit at Yale University this
bassadors at a Donor Appreciation pants shared stories from three dif- ally great, and I hope it keeps going.” summer.
Reception at Northern Trust Bank ferent perspectives.
last Thursday evening, learning Arielle Reason spoke at last year’s The final speaker of the evening
first-hand about how their lives have This is Joenisha Eristhene’s first Friendraiser and returned this year was Calvin Bethel, a recent high
been positively affected through year at the GYAC and the 11-year- to give an update on her progress. school graduate and former GYAC
GYAC programs and mentorship. old said she didn’t want to join the The 13-year-old eighth-grader at- student who is now a volunteer there.
afterschool program originally, but tends Sebastian River Middle School,
“I’ve been involved in a lot of orga- her mother insisted. After raising her is part of the International Bacca- “This is one of the best programs
nizations and some really tug at your grades from a C to an A+ she admits laureate program and is president of I’ve ever been in,” said Calvin. “It
heartstrings. This is one incredible helped me a lot with my homework.
organization,” said Scott Alexander, I’d shut down and get frustrated.”
Northern Trust regional president
and a GYAC board member, welcom- He explained how helpful the
ing guests to the cocktail reception. GYAC mentoring program was for
him, adding, “It’s super important
“We are a game-changer in the to get support from all angles. It will
lives of the students and families help them move forward just like I
that we serve,” said Angelia Perry, am.”
GYAC executive director, borrowing
the quote from Bob Samuels, GYAC “I have been involved in over 22
Foundation Secretary. She said there nonprofit organizations over the
are currently 186 students enrolled years,” said Bill Glavin, GYAC Foun-
in the afterschool program, with an- dation vice chairman and a longtime
supporter. “This is one of the two best
in the world. I fell in love with it right
away. It really touches my heart.” 

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 27


Scott Alexander with Elke and George Fetterolf.
Andy and Sheila Kostanecki and (center) Paul Knapp with GYAC students Renee and Tianna. Sam Block, Alma Lee Loy, Pilar Turner and Kathy Tonkel. PHOTOS: DENISE RITCHIE

Janet Baines, Trudie Rainone and Terry Flaherty.

Susan and Rick Hahn with Samantha Hahn. Joy Steggles and Carol Baldwin with Chaz.

28 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Best of Fest: For VIPs, a sip of coming attractions

BY STEPHANIE LaBAFF wines at a VBWFF Best of the Best: world of wine our VBWFF wine part-
Staff Writer Great Wines for Grand Dinners wine ners have created for tonight. Look
tasting curated exclusively by Rob at everyone ‘Sip! See! Shop for Sun-
VIPs got a taste of good things to Wayne of Varietals and More. As an coast!’” exclaimed Jerusha Stewart,
come last Friday at a Best of Fest added bonus, guests could purchase VBWFF founder. “We’re giving our
event at the Heritage Center to pro- their favorites at extensive discounts Vero in-season crowd a taste of the
mote the second annual Vero Beach at a Wine Pop-Up Shop. award-winning Vero Beach Wine
Wine + Film Festival, which returns + Film Festival in June and we wel-
June 8 to 11. “Tonight was super successful be- come them back.”
cause our pricing for our wine is well
More than 125 guests sipped their below the average retail by 20 to 30 After the wine tasting, the crowd
way through old and new world percent,” said Wayne. “We have a adjourned to the green for a picnic
supper and watched a double feature
Tahiti Woods, Susan Keller Horn,Jerusha Stewart under the stars, viewing a sample of
and Paula Lerner. PHOTOS: DENISE RITCHIE the high-quality films vetted for the
good core community and when it’s
a good cause, they come out and join First up was a screening of
the fight. I’m part of the community, “Somm,” providing a peek behind
so I want to give back.” the scenes as four sommeliers at-
tempt to pass the prestigious Mas-
“It’s a WOW! I’m so jazzed by the ter Sommelier exam, which over the
past 40 years in North America has
passed only about 140 applicants.

After a brief intermission, the VB-
WFF 2016 Audience Award Winner,
“Between Sea and Land,” was pre-
sented. The Columbian drama, set in
an open-air stilt shack over a swamp,
follows the life of a bedridden man

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 29

with a form of muscular dystrophy PEOPLE
and his wish to feel the warm waters
of the ocean just across the street. Quentin Walter, Angela Morgan and Susan Brownell. Marie Healy, Bob Stanley and Zandra Simm.

Proceeds from the evening ben- Lorna and Ray Mitchell. Cathy and Willie LaCroix. Sherry and Jim O’Connor with Janet Sierzant.
efited the Suncoast Mental Health
Center, whose mission is to provide
community-based and family-cen-
tered care for children and families
with emotional health issues.

“VBWFF is so proud to support
this organization through film and
shine a bright light on mental health
and the positive side of it in terms of
what’s available to help people,” said

“Not enough people are aware of
what mental health is,” said retired
Suncoast CEO Art Ciasca. “One in
five people have a mental-health
disorder. These are real medical
conditions like diabetes, cancer or
heart disease. Just as you can’t get
over diabetes or cancer, you can’t
just get over being depressed or hav-
ing anxiety. These are real medical
conditions that can negatively im-
pact or even end a person’s life.”

Debra Scuderi, Suncoast acting
CEO, said the festival theme, A Life
Worth Living, ties in beautifully
adding, “That’s what Suncoast does;
save and change lives.”

For more information visit VB- 

30 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Everything’s on sail at the Steve Martin Regatta

BY STEPHANIE LaBAFF PHOTOS: GORDON RADFORD since the beginning, matriculating munity sailing center, adding, “We
Staff Writer all the way through. want to morph from just being youth
The regatta honors Steve Martin, a sailing into a true community sailing
The Youth Sailing Foundation dedicated instructor and supporter “He built an opti with his father, center. People will be able to come
of Indian River County and Rotary of the foundation who passed away was captain of the high-school sail- down, if they’re qualified, rent a boat
Club of Vero Beach Sunrise hosted its as he was readying his boat to teach ing team this year and is going to and go out.”
fourth Annual Steve Martin Memo- a sailing class. His devotion to edu- sail for the University of Miami next
rial Regatta last Saturday, with more cating others about the sport was the year,” added Hinman. A proposed two-story building
than 40 sailors casting off to perfect genesis for the regattas held in his would house boat storage and shops
sailing weather. memory. Findley says he loves sailing be- on the first floor and air-conditioned
cause “it’s like playing chess on the classrooms, offices and instructional
“Today was a spectacular day,” said “When he was on the water he water.” rooms the top floor, with an observa-
George Hinman, a former America’s was happiest,” said his widow, Ei- tion platform all the way around the
Cup sailor and past commodore of leen Martin. “Steve has been gone for After the regatta, participants and building.
the New York Yacht Club. “The breeze three years and it’s amazing how the their families enjoyed an awards cer-
was good for all the different classes program has grown. He would just emony and barbecue sponsored by “Vero Beach has all this beautiful
and it was pretty steady. We couldn’t love this.” Sunrise Rotary of Vero Beach. water, but it has almost nothing for
have hoped for better conditions.” sailing. We’re the only game in town.
Hinman said Alden Findley, an Looking to the future, YSF Execu- Sailing can be just like the art muse-
YSFIR students were joined by sail- 18-year-old Vero Beach High School tive Director Stu Keiller said the or- um, the theater and other attractions
ors from Melbourne to Palm Beach student, has weathered the wind ganization would like to build a com- here in Vero Beach; people who come
and set sail from the base of the Alma to places like this because there is
Lee Loy Bridge. Three racing classes sailing,” said Keiller.
sailed multiple races on three differ-
ent courses, with spectators watch- Join them on March 26 for Rock
ing by land and by sea. the Boat at the Moorings, an eve-
ning of cocktails, a sailing demon-
“We started in 2009 with zero boats. stration, auctions, dinner and en-
We now have 61 sailboats and 700 chil- tertainment.
dren have been through our program,”
explained Charlie Pope, YSF founder. For more information, visit YS- 

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 31


Richard and Catherine Carlin with Shae Carlin. Stu Keiller and Charlie Pope. Michael Cochran, Whitney Legler and Snook.
Larry Keifer and Greg Gerber.

Walker Young and Aidan Norvell.

Sandra Luppi and Luisa Luppi.

Alden Findley and Maria McGuire.

Julie Zahniser and daughter Caroline Locke.

32 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Reality check: Quail Valley Charities pay out $525K

BY MARY SCHENKEL Steve Mulvey and Diamond Liddy. PHOTOS: DENISE RITCHIE them in attaining their vision of help- smile. You can always count on Mar-
Staff Writer ing children throughout our commu- tha!”
it tremendously. They’re recognized nity and having our community be a
Move over, Disney: The Quail Valley really throughout the community for better place because of this.” Grants were award to: Ballet Vero
River Club was the “happiest place on their volunteerism and philanthropic Beach, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys
earth” last Monday morning, as Quail spirit.” He also credited Kristen Red- She commented that this year a & Girls Clubs, CASTLE, Childcare
Valley Charities presented checks to- ner, QVC executive assistant, for “tak- post-event program will include re- Resources, Children’s Home Society,
taling $525,000 to 34 local nonprofit ing us into the 21st century with tech- cipient organization contact infor- Crossover Mission, Dasie Bridgewa-
agencies for projects focused on chil- nology.” mation to encourage Quail members’ ter Hope Center, Education Founda-
dren and education. volunteer efforts. tion, Environmental Learning Cen-
Lincoln praised Given and Steve ter, Epic Missions, Feed the Lambs
“It’s a great day at Quail Valley; Mulvey, Quail Valley CEO, saying, “It “Most of all, we want to thank you. Enrichment Program, Gifford Youth
Quail Valley Charities celebrated its was their vision to have this be a part You are the ones working the trench- Achievement Center, Gifford Youth
15th season this year,” said Quail Val- of the club. Those of us who are in the es. You are the ones making a differ- Orchestra, Hibiscus Children’s Cen-
ley Golf Club General Manager Kevin leadership of this, it’s just to assist ence for children every single day,” ter, Healthy Start Coalition, Sheriff’s
Given, praising the hardworking com- said Lincoln. “We’re happy to help, but Office Explorers Post 556, Laura (Rid-
mittee and team members, as well as you have our respect, you have our ap- ing) Jackson Foundation, LifeBuilders
the generous Quail Valley member- preciation and we admire what you do of the Treasure Coast, McKee Botani-
ship. “We’ve raised in excess and dis- for children.” cal Garden, Mental Health Associa-
tributed over $5 million in 15 years. tion, Quail Valley Employee Education
This year we’ll be able to fully fund all After handing out checks to grate- Fund, Redlands Christian Migrant
34 nonprofit charities that are repre- ful nonprofit representatives, Martha Association, Scholarship Foundation,
sented.” Redner reiterated, “Thank you again Special Equestrians, Striving 4 Suc-
for all you do. That’s going to serve a cess, Suncoast Mental Health Center,
He gave special thanks to Wanda lot of kids in our community.” The Learning Alliance, The Salvation
Lincoln, QVC executive chair, her vice Army, Vero Beach Museum of Art, Vic-
chair Trudie Rainone, and Martha “Isn’t it wonderful? We’re fully fund- tory Kids, VNA & Hospice Foundation,
Redner, QVC executive director, say- ed!” exclaimed Trudie Rainone. “It’s Willis Sports Association, Women’s
ing, “They’ve really taken this char- been a fabulous year. Martha deserves Care Center and Youth Guidance. 
ity from its infancy stages and grown so much credit for being our fearless
leader. No matter what the day is like,
she’s always there to help, and with a

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 33


Cynthia Falardeau, Cathy Filusch and Candace MacMillan. Linda Downey, Bill Munn and Taree Glanville.

Barbara Hammond, Kerry Bartlett, Don Riefler, Ann Marie McCrystal and Shannon Bowman.

Andrea Berry, Rhonda Blakey and Theresa Garbarino-May. Martha Redner, Kevin Given and Joan Cook.

Bill and Cathye Motta. Paul Sexton and Lou Boccabella. Carol Buhl, Sue Sharpe, Joanna Meyers Trudie Rainone, Molly Steinwald and Wanda Lincoln.
and Michelle Borisenok

34 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Angels Dinner is ‘sweet’ success for Boys and Girls Clubs

BY MARY SCHENKEL bers of the Vero Beach, Sebastian and riety of musical numbers. of talking to new people and has gained
Staff Writer Fellsmere clubs challenged attendees “Without the clubs, many of the trusted, long-term friends. “Those
to ’50s trivia, gave out adorable hand- friends made me a better leader and
Roughly 400 guests took “A Trip crafted poodle magnets and expound- children would have nowhere to go pushed me to achieve good grades.”
Down Memory Lane” last Wednesday ed on their favorite afterschool activi- during the day while school is out,”
evening at a retro-themed Angels Help ties. said Sandy Johnson, event co-chair As a Keystone member, he has at-
Our Kids Take Flight dinner to benefit with Nancy Lynch. “Instead they will tended leadership summits and
the Boys and Girls Clubs of Indian Riv- Amazing balloon centerpieces by be able to come to the club and be learned how to mentor and teach oth-
er County. Balloons by Sara’s Creative Events took surrounded by caring staff and vol- ers to be their best. “Being at the club
the cake – in this case the ice-cream unteers thanks to all the angels in the has put people in my life that push
“This year is our 16th annual dinner, sundae – with pink parfaits topped audience.” me to my full potential. The Boys &
so we thought it would be fun to have a with whipped cream, cherries and Girls Clubs helps drive me toward my
Sweet 16 party,” said Bill Munn, board sprinkles that looked good enough “We are putting huge smiles on goals so that I may have a great future.
co-chairman with Dan Somers. “The to eat. No nibbles necessary, though; these kids’ faces, we are giving them Thank you to all who have helped me
Angels Dinner is the most important the Elizabeth Kennedy Catering retro a sense of belonging and, mostly, we on this journey; I am where I am be-
fundraiser we have for the Boys & Girls meatloaf and mashed potatoes dinner are giving them a sense of self-worth cause of you.”
Clubs. All scholarship money raised concluded with a luscious sundae. and confidence in themselves,” Lynch
makes it possible for hundreds of kids added. “One of our biggest new initiatives
in our community to spend their sum- Adding to the nostalgic décor were is our Destinations Program, which is
mer in a safe and educational environ- gorgeous cars of the era on loan from “The Youth of the Year program is exposing teens to a multitude of career
ment.” Gordon Stewart, owner of Motor City designed to recognize our best and and educational opportunities avail-
Classic Cars, and Indian River Charter brightest young people,” said Elizabeth able to them,” said Dan Somers. “We
Arriving guests were greeted by High School students garbed in their Thomason, B&GC executive direc- are also expanding our athletics pro-
B&GC members including Marve best ’50s apparel wandered the “halls,” tor, introducing 2017 honoree Marve gram with our expanded Vero Beach
Henry, the 2017 Youth of the Year, and periodically striking imaginative tab- Henry. An honor student and athlete, facility.”
American Bandstand presentation leaux. Henry is a junior at Vero Beach High
emcees Davion, who aspires to be an School and a member of the Keystone The Angel Dinner provides the fund-
actor, and Jaquan, who is planning a Club members overcame jitters and Club, and intends to become a lawyer. ing for summer-camp scholarships,
career in business management. displayed their considerable talents, and Somers said they hoped to raise
leading the pledge, invocation and “My club experience has been amaz- enough to enable 700 children to re-
Engaging and courteous, mem- Club Code, and performing a wide va- ing!” said Henry. Previously introvert- ceive a scholarship this year. 
ed, he shared that he overcame his fear



38 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


Riverside’s ‘Mame’: Amid much sizzle, a little fizzle

BY MICHELLE GENZ Escapade,” published in 1955, became Patrick are barely bonded when the taking Patrick’s son to India.
a massive best-seller, and became one stock market crashes, a buzz-kill if ever The cast is led by Michele Ragusa as
Staff Writer of three Tanner works simultaneously there was one. The boy is bundled off
on the New York Times best-seller list. to boarding school at the insistence of Mame Dennis. Last season at Riverside,
Riverside Theatre’s big, beautiful his stuffy trustee. And Mame musters Ragusa starred in another Jerry Her-
“Mame” banks on the same things Like his auntie heroine, Tanner him- enough esprit to go out and get a job. man musical from the same era, “Hello,
many of its shows bank on: splashy sets, self led something of a socially radical After flopping in show business – liter- Dolly.” On Broadway, she has played in
a polished cast, and terrific music that existence. After marrying a woman ally; she slips off a hanging moon – she “Young Frankenstein,” “Urinetown,”
long ago etched a groove in the minds and having two children, the bisexual finds a job as a manicurist. Right off, “Ragtime” and “Titanic,” stepping in
of an audience old enough to have gone Tanner became well-known in the she is crushing on her first client, dis- for the lead at the last minute for the
to the Broadway show. gay scene in Greenwich Village. When tracted to the point of filing his finger- one-night 20th anniversary “Titantic”
Tanner’s books went out of print in the tips raw. But the debonair Beauregard concert in Lincoln Center.
That was half a century ago. Any- 1970s, he worked as a butler, including Jackson Pickett Burnside is equally
where else but Vero, with its large senior for Ray Kroc of McDonald’s fame. smitten, and in one of several attempts Corinne Melancon played the im-
demographic, banking on a hit from at vintage racy humor, sweeps her off to portant supporting role of Vera Charles,
another time and sensibility is some- “Auntie Mame” the play opened on Peckerwood, his Southern plantation. Mame’s slithery, boozy, deep-throated
thing of a gamble. This production has Broadway in 1956. “Mame” the musi- sidekick. Melancon spent 11 years
all the pieces in place, with some roles cal opened 10 years later starring An- Alas, on their ’round-the-world hon- playing in “Mamma Mia!” on Broad-
large enough to include some real emo- gela Lansbury. As Mame Dennis, an eymoon, Beauregard falls down an way. Mame’s love interest Beauregard
tions, yet it never quite connects in that unmarried bohemian with plenty of “Alp” to his death. Mame, now a wealthy was played by George Dvorsky, whose
regard. That leaves the comedy hang- dough, is enjoying the last hoots of the widow, comes home to find that Patrick Broadway credits include the title role
ing, and the show well this side of relat- Roaring ’20s with her adults-only social has grown into a preppy bore. Worse, in “The Scarlet Pimpernel,” as well as
able. circle, her 10-year-old nephew, newly he is engaged to a racist rich girl. Mame “Gentleman Prefer Blondes” and “The
orphaned, comes from a farm in Iowa takes care of that in a hurry, dispatch- Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.” Jim
With a book by Jerome Lawrence to live with her, his only living relative ing with the future in-laws by buying Brochu, who played Dwight Babcock,
and Robert E. Lee, the musical is based (she had no idea.) up a lot next door to them for a home the uptight banker entrusted with Pat-
on the Lawrence and Lee play “Auntie for unwed mothers. Instead, she sets rick’s upbringing, won a slew of awards
Mame.” That play along with a subse- That little boy, alone with his suit- the newly liberated Patrick up with a including the New York Drama Desk
quent film starred Rosalind Russell case, is a sobering harbinger of the nice New York decorator (female – it’s Award for his role in “Zero Hour,” the
in a career-defining role. Both were times ahead, even as Mame all but of- still the ’60s, after all). The final scene story of Zero Mostel. Laura E. Taylor,
drawn from a novel by Patrick Dennis, fers him a cocktail then shuffles him jumps ahead 10 years and has Mame who plays the goofy Agnes Gooch, was
a pseudonym for Edward Everett Tan- off to an experimental school involving in “Mame” at the Kennedy Center. She
ner III. “Auntie Mame: An Irreverent (gasp) group nudity. Mame and little

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 39



BY STEPHANIE LABAFF and learning everything he can.
Staff Writer Fortunately for the rest of us, he then

Former Harris Corporation pro- puts pen to paper. This time, his dig-
gram manager and longtime Vero ging was into a dig – the archaeologi-
Beach resident Rody Johnson suffers cal dig in the site known as Vero Man,
from an insatiable thirst for knowl- one in a string of archaeological sites
edge. He has found a cure for the af- between Vero and Melbourne discov-
fliction, though: digging into a topic ered 100 years ago that proved that


also performed in the national tours of barely moved by her new role as mater- AN EYE
“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” and nal surrogate. We don’t see her flip the FOR DESIGN
“Oklahoma!” priority switch that would shut down
her role as party maven as she takes on JOIN US FOR A SHOW WELCOMING
And Jazmin Gorsline, who also child-rearing. That left me feeling not AWARD-WINNING JEWELRY DESIGNER,
played in Riverside’s “Dolly” as Irene great about Patrick’s fate. Sentimental
Malloy, trained in opera at the Eastman songs like Patrick’s “My Best Girl” and ELIZABETH GARVIN
School of Music. Midway through the Mame’s “If He Walked Into My Life” –
already brief rehearsals for “Mame,” two of the best in the show – ended up FRIDAY & SATURDAY, MARCH 17–18
she stepped in for Gail Bennett in the ringing a little hollow for me.
role of Sally Cato, the Southern belle. SEE THESE AND OTHER FINE THINGS AT VERO’S FINEST
Amidst all those Broadway veterans, COLLECTION OF AMERICAN-MADE ART AND JEWELRY
Like “Dolly,” “Mame” was directed it was Freedman who gave this show
here by James Brennan, a Riverside vet- heart. The son of two University of Cen-
eran, with music direction by the inde- tral Florida graduates, he goes to pub-
fatigable Anne Shuttlesworth, who had lic school in the East Village and trains
the same post for “Dolly.” intensively at the Joffrey ballet school
and Act One Studios. Novice though he
Brennan, who also choreographed is in this his first professional produc-
both shows, hit the mark in “Dolly” in tion, he gave the story depth with his
multiple numbers that had me blinking diligence and vulnerability. In contrast,
in disbelief. In “Mame,” there was less Ragusa’s Mame seemed to be waiting
razzle-dazzle and the same soupcon of for the nanny tag team.
tentativeness that came across in the
acting. More than once, rather than That in part is the script’s doing: The
feeling in thrall at the full cast in full very next scene after little Patrick’s
swing, I was instead counting off the introduction, he has been anointed
beats – one, two, three, four. That sen- house mixologist, doing play-by-play of
sation should have been dispelled long his by-the-book martini-making for a
before opening night. newly arrived guest.

Chief within that hesitation was Ra- That guest turns out to be the uptight
gusa’s connection to her young charge. trustee charged with overseeing his up-
While that actor, Bergman Freedman bringing, which includes, by his father’s
making his regional debut, easily mas- dictum, a “conservative” education.
tered the endearing innocence of an
orphan dropped into a Beekman Street “Mame” runs through March 26. 
bacchanalia, Ragusa’s Mame seems

7 72 . 2 3 4 . 6711

40 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


humans were in the Florida peninsula A tour at the Old Vero Ice Age Site. PHOTO: DENISE RITCHIE
as far back as the Ice Age, thousands of
years earlier than was thought at the some time in California before return- could give little input. In dogged pur- group that meets weekly at the home
time the remains were found. ing to Florida. suit, Johnson talked with locals and of Gertrude Terry in the Old Riomar
dug through archives, going so far as neighborhood of Vero’s barrier island.
Johnson has just released his fifth Growing up in Vero, Johnson heard to visit the U-boat captain in Germany. “They listened to every word of ‘An
book, “An Ice Age Mystery: Unearthing stories of the night in 1942 when his fa- Ice Age Mystery,’” says Johnson. “As I
the Secrets of the Old Vero Site.” ther, an Auxiliary Coast Guard volun- “It took me 13 years to write ‘Dif- wrote the book, I would read each new
teer, rescued survivors torpedoed by a ferent Battles’ because it was my first section to the group during our meet-
“Rody has always loved researching German submarine. one,” says Johnson. “First, I had to ings. Their feedback was invaluable.”
things,” says his wife Tommye. “He learn to write.”
loves research more than writing. He’ll By the time Johnson decided to find Johnson’s third book, “The Rise and
see something that interests him and out more about the event and his fa- And learn to write he did – with a lit- Fall of Dodgertown,” is another histor-
start digging into it.” ther’s role in it, Kit Johnson was suf- tle help from his friends. The Johnsons ical journey. A lifelong Dodger fan, he
fering from Alzheimer’s disease and are part of the Sandfly Lane writers
So it’s no surprise that his latest book
digs deeply, both literally and figura-
tively, into the archaeology behind the
Ice Age human remains that came to
be known as Vero Man, discovered just
north of what is now the Indian River
County Administration building 100
years ago. His book chronicles events
through the more recent discoveries of
ancient bison bones in a renewed ex-
cavation effort now in its fourth year.

“I hope others gain a better under-
standing of archaeology from reading
this book. I just wish I had a book like
this. I would have known more, quick-
er,” says Johnson.

In the eighth grade, Johnson had as-
pirations of following in the footsteps
of his hero Ernest Hemingway, but in-
stead chose to take another path. After
graduating from Cornell University
and the University of Virginia, he spent

Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™ Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 41


was a natural to be drawn to the topic. sifted through soil and spent count- “I think he manages to weave a very Next up for Johnson? He says he’s
“The Dodgers left Vero Beach the less hours talking with Adovasio, the exciting version that’s accessible by become very interested in healthcare,
site’s principal investigator. the lay public as well as by profession- specifically in Indian River County.
year the book came out. It was great als to the 100-year history of the site in “I’ve done some preliminary research
because every Dodger fan in the coun- “Like so many of the OVIASC mem- his book, and I think both his own in- and started collecting stuff. I’m not
try visited Dodgertown. The book sold bership, Rody has an unusually well- terest and his ability to hold the inter- sure how to put it all together yet. It’s
like hotcakes; then the Dodgers were developed interest in the remote ar- est of others are commendable things, very confusing,” says Johnson.
gone,” he recalls. chaeology of central Florida,” explains to say the least,” continues Adovasio.
Adovasio, using an acronym for the Johnson will be at the Vero Beach
Johnson heard about the resurrec- group funding the dig. “He has been The Ice Age site still hasn’t given up Book Center March 16 at 4 p.m. for a
tion of interest in Vero Man from a instrumental in energizing a large all its secrets. At the end of the last sea- signing of “An Ice Age Mystery: Unearth-
friend. After learning of plans to initi- group of similarly-minded folk that son, one of the field technicians found ing the Secrets of the Old Vero Site.” The
ate a new dig, he was drawn into the appreciate the depth of the pre-his- bison bones. book is available at Vero Beach Book
100-year saga but had difficulty with tory of this part of the state and at the Center, Corey’s Pharmacy and the Old
the jargon of the field. Johnson had same time to have captured in a very On the cusp of the rainy season, Vero Site. It can be ordered from Ama-
more than a passing interest in archae- dramatic way the 100-year saga of an they were forced to fill in the dig site, zon, Kindle, iBooks and the University
ology. His father had uncovered some interest in the Vero site.” which they are currently in the pro- Press of Florida. 
bones while digging a muck pond in cess of excavating.
1955. “He thought he’d found the be- Vero Beach wasn’t the only Florida CONTINUED ON PAGE 44
ginning of earth,” chuckles Johnson as place of archaeological notoriety at
he points to a large mammoth tooth. the time. As interest in the Vero site
“He sent them off to Tallahassee, and waned, three sites in Melbourne drew
they said this is great, but we’re finding the attention of scientists after two
this kind of stuff all the time.” mammoth skeletons were discovered
on the property of Harvard zoolo-
Having moved to Vero Beach in gist C.P. Singleton, along the banks of
the 1930s, Johnson had peripheral Crane Creek south of what is now the
knowledge of the Vero Man dig and Melbourne Golf and Country Club.
subsequent discoveries. It was his re- Like the Vero Site, the Crane Creek
cent conversations with archaeolo- excavations into what is known as
gist Andy Hemmings, who, with Dr. the Melbourne Bone Bed turned up
James Adovasio, oversees the new dig human bones including a rib and a
through Florida Atlantic University, crushed skull among the mammal
that inspired Johnson to learn more bones, all from the late Pleistocene
about the controversy behind the dis- era, 10,000 to 20,000 years ago. The
covery of the human bones in amongst animals represented there, now all
remains of Ice Age mammals. extinct, include giant beavers, giant
armadillos, mastodons and saber-
Johnson’s goal was to tell the story toothed cats. Paleo-Indian artifacts
in terms the layperson could under- were also found, as well as at a site 10
stand. He was pleasantly surprised miles southwest of Melbourne, known
when the University Press of Florida as Lake Helen Blazes.
sent the book out for peer reviews, and
the “experts” found his recount both As Johnson tells the tale of the Vero
accurate and compelling. Man, he takes the reader on an ar-
chaeological road trip, with stops not
“Since the site’s discovery long ago, just in Melbourne, but Warm Mineral
the complete story of the Old Vero Springs in Sarasota County and along
Site has never been told. This is an in- the Peace River, that curves southeast
formative and entertaining account from north of Bartow in the center of
of this remarkable site and its histo- the state, emptying into the gulf via
ry in American archaeology,” writes the estuary at Port Charlotte. Those
Thomas D. Dillehay, author of “The sites also produced human remains
Settlement of the Americas: A New indicating the existence of Ice Age
Prehistory.” people at the same time as extinct Ice
Age animals.
Initially, Johnson attended board
meetings and visited the site to gather
material for his book. He gave tours,

50 Vero Beach 32963 / March 16, 2017 Your Vero Beach Newsweekly ™


BY PETER FORD cal identity, defining itself in contrast
to the West.
Twenty years ago, Russia was a muscles in a manner not witnessed Rumer, head of the Russia and Eurasia The post-Soviet experiment in free
member of the Group of Eight indus- since the cold war. And the world had Program at the Carnegie Endowment market capitalism, steered by Western
trialized democracies, a NATO part- better get used to it. “Russia is not for International Peace, a think tank in advisers, left the jewels of the Russian
ner, and a fledgling but enthusiastic some regional dwarf,” says Andrei Kli- Washington. “Russia will continue to economy in the hands of a few bil-
new recruit to a budding “new world mov, deputy head of the international poke and prod us.” lionaire oligarchs – and hundreds of
order.” Today, Russia has been kicked millions of Russians in penury. While
out of the G8, NATO has suspended all Wooden dolls depicting Presidents Trump and Putin in a shop in St. Petersburg, Russia. Russia was weak, the Western mili-
cooperation with Moscow, and Vladi- tary alliance extended itself to include
mir Putin says his nation is engaged in affairs committee of the upper house So the question remains: Will there former Soviet republics. Moscow felt
a “civilizational” battle with the West of parliament, “but a world power with be a rapprochement between the US threatened, humiliated, and forced to
over “dueling values.” its own zone of influence.” and Russia, or a dangerous new era of swallow Western values.
bellicosity and brinkmanship?
Is a historic reconciliation between That attitude spells trouble for the From the Western perspective, Rus-
Washington and Moscow, which Presi- international system that America From Moscow’s perspective, a more sia has flunked the key test for mem-
dent Trump has hinted at, a real possi- has dominated for decades. “Russia assertive role in the world was inevita- bership in the club: democracy. And
bility? Recent pushback in Washington has positioned itself as the challenger ble as Russia grew back into its histori- as Moscow has fallen back into its old
against the idea from leading Repub- of the global liberal order the United autocratic ways, it has revealed revan-
licans and others has cast a shadow States has promoted,” warns Eugene chist territorial instincts and a deter-
over the prospect. So, too, has the mination to claw back lost influence in
growing controversy over Trump presi- its neighborhood and beyond.
dential campaign contacts with Rus-
sian officials – including most recently Amid deep mutual distrust and dis-
revelations of Attorney General Jeff illusion, Moscow has changed tack.
Sessions's conversations with the Rus- In its 2013 “foreign-policy concept,”
sian ambassador to the U.S. in 2016. Russia referred to itself as “an integral,
organic part of European civilization.”
And as President Putin charts a The new version that Putin approved
prouder and more assertive course last November drops that phrase and
for his vast nation, operations such instead talks of “dueling values.” It
as Russia’s 2014 invasion and annexa- blames “western powers” for “impos-
tion of Crimea in neighboring Ukraine ing their points of view” on the world
point to much broader changes afoot and sees “the struggle for dominance
that pose hard questions about the in shaping the key principles of the
balance of power in the world. future international system” as “a key
trend” in world affairs.
From the Middle East to Latin Amer-
ica, from Ukraine to China, Russia Moscow cast aside one such key prin-
is flexing its diplomatic and military ciple – nation-states’ territorial integri-
ty – when neighboring Ukraine showed
signs of aligning itself with the West.
In 2014 Russian special forces invaded
Crimea, historically a part of Russia
but which more recently belonged to
Ukraine, and annexed the region.

That move was illegal under inter-
national law; it provoked international
sanctions that are still in place. But
the annexation was massively popular
among ordinary Russians, who saw it
as a big step toward recovering their na-
tion’s lost prestige, status, and author-
ity. Indeed, 87 percent of respondents
to one poll approved the move. Putin’s
popularity rating stands at 86 percent,
according to a poll last November.

Russia shows no sign of ambitions to
reestablish the Soviet-era worldwide
network of allies and client states.
Rather, Moscow is concentrating on
efforts to stifle any tendency among
former Soviet republics to move closer
to the West. That appears to be what
is behind Moscow’s support for sepa-
ratist rebels in eastern Ukraine, where
fighting flared up again in February.

Roman Dyuzhikov, a factory work-
er, and his family had survived three
years of fighting unscathed until early
February. Then, suddenly, one evening
during a heavy rebel bombardment of
their village of Avdiivka, a shell explod-
ed in their kitchen.

Roman’s wife, Olga, had just left the

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