Category: Features

The Voice of Young People

It’s almost showtime again for Orlando Repertory Theatre, but the 2017-18 performance season marks a different focus for the theater in providing quality entertainment for children and their families. This season encompasses shows that reflect the current times young people are living in and offers theatrical opportunities that give a voice to children’s perspectives on life.

The Arts

Orlando boasts an eclectic variety of cultural events, performance troupes and arts centers. Theater groups, museums and local attractions offer something to suit everyone.

60 Years in the Making

As the first day of school approaches, the halls of Foundation Academy are much like any other school, filled with teachers preparing classrooms and gearing up for the start of a new school year. However, this isn’t just any academic year for Foundation Academy. This year marks the school’s 60th anniversary, the celebration of which will officially kick off January 2018, at the annual State of the Academy Address.

Back to School 2017

Southwest Orlando Bulletin’s 20th annual Back to School section provides a comprehensive look at a variety of school-related topics. In the following articles, area experts offer insights into different concerns often brought about by the start of a new school year. For students, there is an article about skin care. For parents, there is information about dental hygiene, healthy skin, stress management for the family, and more.

Arnold Palmer

On Sept. 25, 2016, the world lost a golf legend and Central Florida lost a community champion.

Arnold Palmer’s celebrated golf career saw seven major titles, including four Masters Tournament championships, 62 PGA Tour wins, 95 professional victories, 26 amateur victories, 10 Champions Tour victories, and six Ryder Cup appearances and World Cup appearances, respectively, until his retirement on Oct. 13, 2006. He then served as an honorary starter for the Masters.

Soaring to New Heights With Napa Nights

Since opening two years ago, Slate restaurant in the heart of Dr. Phillips has become a neighborhood favorite and gained the attention of national media. In a recent article, the Boston Globe described the restaurant’s brunch as “phenomenal” and highlighted Slate’s brilliant-pink deviled eggs as one of the top things to eat in Orlando.

It’s no surprise then that this casually elegant restaurant with a hint of Southern style will be soaring to new heights this summer with the introduction of Napa Nights, a prix fixe menu paired with award-winning Napa Valley wines.

“That’s My Dad!” Photo Contest

William Shakespeare once wrote, “It is a wise father that knows his own child.” When Southwest fathers are not busy being all-around superheroes for their families, they are busy becoming experts on their children. From favorite toys to secret sayings, good dads share a bond with their children like no other. And the fathers in Southwest Orlando Bulletin’s milestone 24th annual That’s My Dad! photo contest are no exception.

Weather the Storm!

Andy Phillips of State Farm Insurance Co. has been providing excellent care and coverage for his clients for nearly 46 years. In 2013, he opened Andy Phillips State Farm Insurance Co. in Dr. Phillips. His highly trained and experienced staff includes his wife and office manager, Connie, who has been with State Farm for 31 years.

Bright Futures for Every Student!

Education was the opportunity for change that took Southwest resident, philanthropist and businessman Harris Rosen from a rough neighborhood in New York’s Upper East Side to the renowned hotel investor he is today. You can’t go very far in Central Florida without seeing his name attached to exclusive hotels, a medical center, a Jewish community center, and even a college building.

There Every Step of the Way!

Millennium Homes Realty Offers a Personal Approach to Real Estate

By choosing Millennium Homes Realty, clients get a two-person team dedicated to their every need.

One of the most stressful experiences many adults will face is buying or selling a home. For a buyer, from sifting through an inundation of houses to choosing the right investment to inspections and financing; and for a seller, from the overwhelming options of marketing to staging and open houses to closing, the process can be vastly overwhelming. That’s where Courtney Shoultz and Francisco “Cisco” Chavez of Millennium Homes Realty LLC come in.

A Long & Rich History

Tucked between Windermere and Ocoee, and home to about 2,000 people, Gotha enjoys a rich history, which caring citizens have sought to preserve and maintain.

Early Gotha

German immigrant H.A. Hempel founded Gotha in the late 1870s and named it after his birthplace. A Buffalo, New York, resident, he planned to spend a few months of the year in Florida to escape the cold. Hempel, an inventor of a printing tool, envisioned Gotha being an enclave for fellow Germans.

Best Mom in Southwest – 2017

In 1992, the Southwest Orlando Bulletin — then just a little more than 6 years old — introduced what has become a Southwest Orlando institution — the annual Best Mom in Southwest contest. Now in its 26th year, the contest is a way for residents to express to their moms how important they truly are.

It seems that mothers are perpetually protecting their children from the ills of the world, tirelessly cooking and cleaning, and preparing their children for adult life, all while managing to somehow be the kindest and gentlest women, despite occasionally having to dole out discipline.

A Glimpse Under the Sea!

Sea Life Orlando Aquarium Houses 1,000+ Underwater Creatures

At Sea Life Orlando Aquarium, guests get an up-close look at fish and other sea life from around the world (photo ©Matt Marriott).

With 71 percent of the earth’s surface covered by water, it is no surprise that humans have an endless curiosity for life under the waves.

Dr. John Carrozzella Finds His Calling in Wellness

Restoring Hope for Patients

Dr. John C. Carrazzella

John C. Carrozzella, M.D., customizes a treatment plan for each patient according to his/her needs (photo by

It took a relentless search of finding a resolution for the debilitating symptoms of his wife’s menopause for John Carrozzella, M.D., founder of Florida Center for Hormones and Wellness in Dr. Phillips, to realize his true calling.

Having spent 25 years as a successful Orthopaedic Surgeon, Dr. Carrozzella believed this specialty was where he would spend the entirety of his medical career.

Summer Kids Calendar 2017

Summer is approaching, and soon, the school year will be over. If you’re seeking kid-friendly activities to keep your children entertained, active and out of trouble, then look no further. Southwest Orlando Bulletin’s annual Summer Kids Calendar provides great ideas to get you started.

Campers learn self-esteem while experiencing modeling and more at The Maile Image, Modeling & Acting School.

ACTING, MODELING, IMAGE & CONFIDENCE DEVELOPMENT CAMPS at The Maile Image, Modeling & Acting School, 999 S. Orlando Ave., Winter Park, 407-628-5989, The Maile School trains in the areas of image and confidence development, professional modeling and on-camera acting for TV, commercials and film. Camps are held at the Maile School and a special fashion camp at The Mall at Millenia.

Southwest Orlando Staycations

With world-class experiences and entertainment right here, Southwest Orlando residents don’t need to travel far to experience great getaways. Whether it is a vacation-worthy dining experience, luxury hotel or fun excursion, the following staycation ideas are guaranteed to allow residents to unwind without going very far.

Picture My Pet Photo Contest

For 16 years, Southwest Orlando residents have showed off the modeling talents of their beloved pets in the annual Picture My Pet photo issue. And for 16 years, the staff of the Southwest Orlando Bulletin has had the privilege of reviewing hundreds of creative — and often funny — shots, showcasing everything from dogs in hats to cuddly kittens to birds and horses.

This year was no exception. Residents from more than 42 neighborhoods submitted almost 100 photos of their furry and fluffy friends, creating an adorable album of the pets that bring joy to the hearts of their owners across Southwest Orlando.

We extend big thank-yous to all the residents and their animal pals who participated in this year’s issue!

A Historical Look at Winter Garden

Cherishing the Past While Progressing Into the Future

by Debra Wood

One of the most successful efforts at embracing history in Central Florida, downtown Winter Garden has become an active, engaging area full of shops, restaurants, a hotel and a theater.

Men, women and children work the fields in the 1900s. (Photo courtesy of the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation)

The city formed a community redevelopment agency in 1992, the Winter Garden Heritage Foundation was created in 1994, and the History Research and Education Center opened in 2015.

Valentine’s Day Wishes

Valentine’s Day is that special time of year when we celebrate the cherished bonds we share with family, friends and loved ones. In honor of the romantic holiday, we asked you to send us your sweet nothings, and the responses touched our hearts.

Read below for outpourings of love from residents across Southwest.

Cupid’s Corner

February brings the season of love, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner. Hands are held, flowers are delivered, and chocolate is consumed by the pound. This year, make your valentine feel extra-special with one (or more) of these fabulous gift ideas. Whether it is a romantic dinner for two, an energizing activity or self-improvement, Cupid’s Corner has the perfect fit for your loved one.

Huntington Learning Center

Meet the SAT/ACT Experts Securing Students’ Futures

Although Arya (left) and Ziya are identical twins, Huntington Learning Center has created a program tailored to each one’s specific needs.

Ipanema Brows & Waxing

Bringing Brazilian Beauty Techniques to Orlando

Osvaldo Marraccini (left) and Mariana Ribeiro, owners of Ipanema Brows & Waxing, pride themselves on offering a clean, relaxing, private solution to beauty care.

Feel the warmth of the environment, relax in tropical surroundings, and let native bossa nova music move you to a peaceful state of mind. These statements might make you visualize yourself on a luxurious beach somewhere hundreds of miles from home.

New Year, New You

Keeping resolutions can be a daunting task; however, Southwest Orlando Bulletin’s first New Year, New You section provides a plethora of advice from local experts to help readers achieve and maintain their goals.