Category: News & Business Briefs

Mayor Jacobs Cut Ribbon and more news …


Ribbon cutting held for new community park

Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and District 4 Commissioner Jennifer Thompson (center front, holding scissors) cut the ribbon at the new Young Pine Community Park.

Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and District 4 Commissioner Jennifer Thompson joined local residents for the …

Ocoee Construction Project Begins and more news …

compiled by Lauren Salinero


Ocoee construction project begins

City Center West Orange in Ocoee will cover 100 acres and is expected to create more than 8,000 jobs.

Developers held a groundbreaking ceremony for the start of construction of City Center West Orange in Ocoee. The $400 million mixed-use destination will be a city-style mix of retail, condominiums, a hotel and office space on 100 acres of lakeside property facing West Colonial Drive, near the junctions of state roads 429 and 408 and Florida’s Turnpike. Construction will commence on the roads and stormwater pond first and should take 10 months before building construction begins. Phase I is expected to be completed by the third quarter in 2019.

Holiday bazaar earns more than $37,000 and more news …

The United Methodist Women of St. Lukes United Methodist Church raise more than $37,000 at their annual Holiday Bazaar.

At the United Methodist Women of St. Lukes United Methodist Church’s 34th annual Holiday Bazaar, more than 14 specialty shops were set up to resemble a Christmas market with handmade fall and holiday crafts for sale. Homemade pickles and baked goods, along with antique and decorator items, were offered for shoppers. Santa Claus greeted the children, and entertainment was provided by the Dr. Phillips High School choir.

Annual Tales and Tails Gala and More News


A record 735 guests attend Canine Companions for Independence’s Tales and Tails Gala.

Earlier this fall, Canine Companions for Independence held its 20th charity gala, the Tales and Tails Gala, at Rosen Shingle Creek to raise money to help place assistance dogs, free of charge, for people with disabilities.

Five Star New Year’s Eve at I-Drive 360 and more news …


compiled by Lauren Salinero


Southwest resident John Stine (middle, far right) of IDrive 360 joins representatives from Concept ID and Case Americas to celebrate the announcement of Five Star New Year’s Eve.

Concept ID and Case Americas officials announced Five Star New Year’s Eve at IDrive 360. The unique event will gather local celebrities and Orlando’s most influential people, and feature world-class disc jockeys and entertainment. Admission packages start with general admission, including a full-service open bar with beverages, beer, vodka, whiskey and Prosecco, and go up to the Gold Lounge package, which accommodates 16 people, features a separate VIP entrance, full-service open bar, exclusive dinner and breakfast, a dedicated butler service, and

Southwest Orlando Business Briefs

compiled by Lauren Salinero


Victory Martial Arts Celebrates 19th anniversary

Students and their families celebrate Victory Martial Arts’ 19th anniversary with special classes and a potluck.

To commemorate its 19th anniversary, Victory Martial Arts at 7512 Dr. Phillips Blvd., Suite 120, in Orlando, hosted two special classes, featuring guest instructors Master Von Schmeling and professional Ultimate Fighting Championship fighters Antonio and Anthony Pettis. Anthony is the former UFC Lightweight Champion. After the classes, students and their families were invited to partake in a celebratory potluck. For more information, call 877-797-7988 or visit www.victoryma.com on the web.

SW Orlando News & Business Briefs


Drowning-prevention organization accepts donation

Susan Polder (third from left), executive director of The Gift of Swimming, accepts a donation from Whole Foods Market representatives (l. to r.) Grant, team member; Michael DAndrea, team leader; Vicky Santamaria, marketing field associate; Krissy, team member; and Ethan, graphic artist.

Whole Foods Market donated 5 percent of one day’s net sales to The Gift of Swimming, an organization committed to providing drowning-prevention resources, including swim training and education.

SW Orlando News Briefs

compiled by Lauren Salinero

Presenting the Coca-Cola Orlando Eye

Winderlakes resident Diana Chastain (front, center) and Southwest resident Todd Andrus (front, right) Orlando Eye head of marketing, take a turn on the newly dubbed CocaCola Orlando Eye.

To celebrate the renaming of The Orlando Eye to the CocaCola Orlando Eye, the 400-foot observation wheel offered all guests a complimentary Coca-Cola beverage. With the new partnership comes an enhanced experience, featuring a bold and contemporary look throughout the exterior of the Eye’s terminal building, including Coca-Cola’s signature red-and-white colors. On the wheel itself, select capsules have been …

SW Orlando News & Business Briefs

compiled by Lauren Salinero

HFUW begins search for new leadership

Southwest resident RobertBobBrown steps down as president and CEO of Heart of Florida United Way.

After a decade of service as president and CEO of Heart of Florida United Way, Southwest resident Robert BobBrown announced his plans to retire. With more than 45 years of experience as a nonprofit administrator, Brown led HFUW’s conversion to the Investing in Results philosophy, which encourages competitive grant funding for specific community issues focused on prevention. Under his leadership,

News & Business Briefs

Representatives of the Central Florida Womens League Foundation award scholarships to 12 local high school seniors.

SouthwestArea Seniors Receive Scholarship Money

Central Florida Womens League Foundation gave out $27,000 in scholarships to 12 well-deserving high school seniors from Dr. Phillips, Ocoee, Olympia and West Orange high schools. Five young women each received $3,000 …

News & Business Briefs

Initiative helps veterans with employment opportunities

Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs (center) attends the Veterans Business Initiative with (l. to r.) Janice Abrew, communications, events and community affairs manager of Rosen Hotels and Resorts; Robert Minnetto, Central Florida community reinvestment manager, Orlando marketing director and vice president of Regions Financial Corp.; Aurora Realin, diversity and inclusion manager at Florida Hospital; …

Clerk’s Office Opens New Sand Lake Service Center

Orange County Tax Collector Scott Randolph and Clerk of Courts Tiffany Moore Russell (front, center) hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Sand Lake service center, located at an existing tax collector’s office.

Southwest resident and Clerk of Courts Tiffany Moore Russell and Orange County Tax Collector Scott Randolph officially opened the clerk’s office new Sand Lake service center, located at …

SW News & Business Briefs – February 2016

compiled by Lauren Salinero –  With tax season underway, Heart of Florida United Way is helping to get the word out about how qualified tax payers can claim their Earned Income Tax Credit, which is recognized for lifting more people out of poverty than any other federal program. The IRS estimates that one in four…

News and Business Briefs in January 2016

 CFHLA Elects 2016 Executive Committee Members of the Central Florida Hotel & Lodging Association elected a new board of directors and executive committee. The 2016 CFHLA board of directors is composed of 45 Central Florida hospitality executives from Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. The executive committee is as follows: Windermere resident David Bartek of Loews Hotels at Universal Orlando, chairperson; Windermere…