KSIB.NET - Linking Osceola County Since 1995
KSIB is a free public service for Kissimmee, St. Cloud, Osceola County, and Central Florida featuring news and blogs, Carl Cricket, Behind The Scenes, Your Voice, local politics, and advertising opportunities in and around Kissimmmee and St. Cloud (Osceola County) Central Florida. KSIB.net has been linking Osceola County since 1995.

More Rumors For The Holidays Plus, The Swearing In/At, Our OPINION Plus Announcements! HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!

| by Carl Cricket | November 26th, 2014 | 4404 words

This will be, hopefully, a short version due to the Thanksgiving Holiday and two of us are catching flights tonight!
If you did not attend the swearing in ceremony at the county building you missed a full house(too bad regular meeting don’t pack them in like this one) and you may also have left feeling not as confident as you did when you arrived. The ceremony was just fine with the honor guard and singers of America The Beautiful, but a strange (to us) thing happened when Viviana Janer was about to be sworn in. Boyfriend and FORMER State Representative Rangel was the person to swear her in. We found it interesting because he is a FORMER state employee and we wondered, out loud a little, why a judge wasn’t swearing Janer in.

Full story »

Rating: 5.0 out of 2 votes cast

Saint Cloud's Election Rules Need Adjustment! Is Colt Coming Manager Says Yes, Rumors, Only Rumors! Water,Water Nowher Soon! So Let's give away Our Water!

| by Carl Cricket | November 19th, 2014 | 6174 words

The City of Saint Cloud is a city which many people enjoy all the activities available to them, not only provided by the city but also by many local businesses. However, the city’s election rules are in need of updating, including but not limited to the city’s position on runoff elections. Many times in recent history a certain candidate would garner the majority of votes but all their votes counted for a percentage under 50%, causing a runoff between the top vote getter and the next candidate with votes, regardless of how many votes they received. Voters become confused as they thought the elections were over, then a runoff date is set (usually a month(approximately) later and voters are either too tired from Holiday shopping, lack of interest (after all, there’s only one (1) candidate) or simply forget. It’s time the Saint Cloud City Council let the voters decide if they want to continue runoffs and adding that extra expense to the city, no matter how small that charge might be. Let Them Vote! :yes:

Full story »

Rating: 4.7 out of 26 votes cast

Deputies Need Public's Help in Locating Missing 82-Year Old Man

| by KSIB | November 13th, 2014 | 157 words


Mr. Gustafson  has been located and appears to be in good health, but is being evaluated at a local hospital. Thank you for your assistance.

Osceola County (November 13, 2014) – Osceola County Sheriff’s deputies need the public’s help in locating John Charles Gustafson, 82.

John was last seen this morning at 5:30 a.m. near his residence on Alligator Lakeshore West in St. Cloud.

He is blind in one eye and recently had cataract surgery in the other. John also has 3rd stage Alzheimer’s disease.

John is described as an 82-year old white male, 5′10”, 155 lbs. with blue eyes and grey hair. He was last seen wearing blue jeans and a shirt.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office at (407) 348-2222 or Crimeline at (800) 423-TIPS (8477). Calls made to Crimeline remain anonymous, and tips that lead to the felony arrest of suspects and/or the recovery of stolen property and drugs are eligible for cash rewards of up to $1,000 dollars.

Rating: 3.9 out of 23 votes cast

Hey Honey,We Washed The County Commission Thoroughly And More,A Final Insult perpetrated By 4 County Commissioners, Who's Running For Tax Collector? more......

| by Carl Cricket | November 7th, 2014 | 4550 words

Well, yes, we sat out the last two weeks and watched just like the vast majority of voters did, while the votes were counted. To be honest, the voter turnout was poor. No, wait a minute. It was PISS POOR! Shame on any registered voters who did NOT cast a ballot. Most likely the same people who complain all about every so called crooked politician but were too damned lazy :) to even ask for an absentee ballot to be mailed to them, AND IT INCLUDED FREE POSTAGE TOO! SHAME ON YOU WHO DID NOT VOTE. You really weren’t good neighbors by NOT voting since you stuck it to them as well! It was them who carried your sorry butt at the ballot box. Boy, we’d bet they aren’t real happy with those of you “good neighbors” either!
Meanwhile, we congratulate those of you who did vote and clear some of the dead wood at the County Commission, prevent the deadwood here in Kissimmee, although Mr. Fisher is a good and decent guy who should continue to be involved, and the confusion in Saint Cloud was caused by another bunch of NON VOTERS. So, again, SHAME on YOU! Saint Cloud was always a city where elections garnered a whole lot more voters, but this particular election was one of the worst ever! ONE (1) city council seat and you couldn’t get the job done! Now, a special election will be held on December 2,2012. Those of you who claim excuses for not voting, call the Supervisor of Elections office at 407-742-6000, OR Email: SOE@voteosceola.com, OR get up off your posterior and go to the Supervisor of Elections Office at 2509 E. Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway. The folks at the office are very nice, very accommodating, and will be VERY happy to see you at their office. It doesn’t cost you a dime to get/request the absentee ballot and it includes a postage paid envelope! Come on City of Saint Cloud, no matter who you’re voting for, (and we hope it’s Mr. Askey) GET INVOLVED. If you do NOT vote, YOU have NO RIGHT TO COMPLAIN! Now, get off you butts and get that absentee ballot.

Okay, all that said we just want to congratulate those of you who DID VOTE! Nice job and we appreciate your involvement. And by voting, you have EARNED the right to bitch, talk, complain, anything you like because you, our friends, have EARNED the right to complain!

Now, with all that said, Mr. Attkisson hasn’t been in and does not intend to be at Monday’s Commission meeting AGAIN! Unless he’s excused and on County business, we certainly hope his salary will be adjusted. Although, it will definitely be adjusted at the end of his term! Same for John Quinones who lost to a woman who never attended a debate, who literally “mailed it in” to newspaper interviews and who, we believe will need training on what her powers include. There are agencies who deal with child and adult abuse and staff will need to advise her along the way. The two senior Democratic Commissioners will have two years before facing replacement, and the way it looks now, based on their voting history, they are in trouble!

That leads us into the next item,which is the purchase of something called Candella Island, a property in the lake known as BIG Lake Toho. Candella Island is locked up with a chain and very large lock, despite the county stating it’s open for viewing! We asked someone who has been in Osceola and, in fact, in the very same area their entire life and this person has NEVER heard of anything named candella. So, no matter how you try, we couldn’t find anyone who had ever heard of this 25.68 acres island! So, we couldn’t find it, even at a distance, and there were no views at all, far or near! Anyway, this island is being used, according to staff and minutes of their meeting, canoes & Kayaks! Now, the county just opened a launching spot in a brand newly constructed park laid out for the very same alleged need. Kayaks and Canoes, so WHY should we the taxpayers allow such an expense which, by the way, will be bonded out to cover the purchase. Oh, our bond rating, according to the County is a mere BBB-, a step above what we’d call JUNK status! Now, of course Frank Attkisson skipped out of the meeting (guess he was very busy again) but the remaining four (4) commissioners, Fred Hawkins, John Quinones, Mike Harford, and Brandon Arrington voted IN FAVOR of this contract.OHHH!! This is a done deal and the seller of the island? Technically it’s owned by CANDELLA ISLAND,Inc., however, signing as its’ PRESIDENT was Phillip Charles Owen, address listed as 1130 E. Donegan Ave., Suite 4, Kissimmee,FL. Signed on 10-29-14. So, there you have it. THE DEAL of the day! What troubles us is the 4 commissioners who would sink taxpayers further in debt, need to be reminded of their spending habits when their elections come up.
***WE apologize for leaving the purchase price out! YOU’RE PAYING…….$3,850,000.00 for this empty, so called “island"!

Finally, we understand Osceola County’s current Tax Collector, Patsy Heffner is planning to retire next year, at least according to the latest RUMORS. This apparently has current county commissioner Brandon Arrington all excited over the news since he’s VERY,VERY interested in the well cushioned post, not to mentioned the 100+K salary which goes along with the post! We’ll keep you posted as time nears however we’ll wager Disney will be a big contributor along with several members of the so called cigar club. Money will be the name of the game if Arrington runs for the post! Let’s hope he goes for it, leaving the commission seat and losing the tax collector post. THAT our friends would be a really funny outcome. Just remember how easily he has been spending YOUR/OUR money! We’ll remind you next time he runs.

That’s it, actually more than enough, so thanks for stopping by and taking a look!

As always, may God bless and watch over you! Be healthy and safe and do a nice thing for someone.


This will be long BUT, these committees are open and NEW members are needed badly. PLEASE consider a committee you like!

Affordable Housing Advisory Committee
The membership shall include: one citizen actively engaged in the residential home building industry in connection with affordable housing; one citizen actively engaged in the banking, or mortgage banking industry in connection with affordable housing; one citizen who is a representative of those areas of labor actively engaged in affordable home building; one citizen actively engaged as a for- profit provider of affordable housing; one citizen actively engaged as a not-for-profit provider of affordable housing; one citizen who is a real estate professional in connection with affordable housing; one citizen who actively serves on the local planning agency pursuant to Florida Statutes, Chapter 163; one citizen who resides within Osceola County; one citizen who represents employers within Osceola County; and one citizen who represents essential services personnel, as defined in the Osceola County LHAP.
13. Appointment to reappoint/replace Domingo Sanchez, “Home Building Industry related to Affordable Housing", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
14. Appointment to reappoint/replace Patricia Del Bagno, “Banking or Mortgage Industry related to Affordable Housing", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
15. Appointment to reappoint/replace Anna Pinellas, “Advocate for Low Income Persons", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
16. Appointment to reappoint/replace Karl-Heinz Theobald, “Representative of a For Profit Provider of Affordable Housing", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
17. Appointment to reappoint/replace Patricia Filippone, “Representative of a Not-For- Profit Provider of Affordable Housing", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
18. Appointment to reappoint/replace Aamir Khan, “Representative of the Essential Services Personnel in Osceola County", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
19. Appointment for a “Real-Estate Professional Associated with Affordable Housing” position, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Board of Adjustment
The members of the Board of Adjustment shall be knowledgeable in the field of Comprehensive Planning and shall be familiar with the Osceola County Comprehensive Plan, the Land Development
4 Regular Meeting – November 10, 2014

Code, and other applicable regulations. This Board is composed of seven members one of which will be appointed from each Commission District and two members being appointed as at-large positions.
20. Appointment to reappoint/replace Michael Cambron, “District 1″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
21. Appointment to reappoint/replace Barbara Hadley, “District 3″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
22. Appointment to reappoint/replace Donna Deese, “District 5″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
23. Appointment to reappoint/replace Derrek Adkins, “At Large", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Community Development Block Grant Advisory Task Force
24. Appointment to replace Carmen Carrasquillo, “District 2″, whose term expires December 31, 2015.
Code Enforcement Board
The Board shall consist of seven members who shall be residents of the County and who shall be appointed by the County Commission on the basis of experience or interest in the subject matter. The membership of the Board shall, whenever possible, consist of the following: Architect, Realtor, Businessman, General Contractor, Engineer, Subcontractor.
25. Appointment for an “Alternate” position.
Enterprise Zone Development Agency Board
This 11 member Board shall consist of four candidate recommendations by the City of Kissimmee for appointment by the County Commission; plus four member appointments by the County Commission; and three additional members shall be appointed to fill at-large positions. Categories for this membership include, a Business Operator, a Resident, a local Financial or Insurance Agency representative, local Law Enforcement personnel, local Code Enforcement personnel, Private Industry Council or Workforce Development Board, non-profit community based organizations, local Chamber of Commerce, and three additional appointments from any of the eight categories. The County Commission will appoint a Chairperson and Vice Chairperson from among the Commissioners and they will serve in that capacity for the duration of their term unless the County decides otherwise. The terms of each Commissioner shall be four years, except for the initial term as established.
26. Appointment to replace Jacqueline R. Hunter, “Resident residing within the Zone”, whose term expired December 31, 2012.
27. Appointment to reappoint/replace Douglas Etheredge, “Local Code Enforcement Agency”, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
5 Regular Meeting – November 10, 2014Fire and Rescue Advisory Board
This Commission consists of seven members: one Fire Commissioner being appointed from each County Commission District and two Fire Commissioners serving in at-large positions.
28. Appointment to reappoint/replace Paul Riccardi, “District 1″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
29. Appointment to replace Suzan Vis, “District 3″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
30. Appointment to replace Sadie Dymmek, “District 4″, whose term expired December 31, 2013.
31. Appointment to reappoint/replace Grant Everage, “District 5″ position, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
32. Appointment to a vacant, “At Large” position, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Homeless Advisory Board
This Board is to provide for participation in the planning, development, implementation, and assessment of Osceola County’s homeless advocacy efforts pursuant to Federal Register Rules and Regulations. Each member must be and continue to be a resident of Osceola County throughout their membership on the Advisory Board.
33. At-large representative who is, or formerly was, homeless. 34. At-large representative from a local non-profit agency dealing with homeless.
Housing Finance Authority
This Authority consists of five residents of the County who shall be knowledgeable in one of the following fields: Labor, Finance, or Commerce.
35. Appointment to reappoint/replace Casmore Shaw, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Land Conservation Advisory Board
This Advisory Board consists of a total of nine members who shall be residents of the County throughout their term and who shall be appointed on the basis of experience. The City of Kissimmee and the City of St. Cloud shall each nominate one member for appointment consideration. The membership shall have expertise in the following categories: Conservation of Natural Resources, Ecology, Ecotourism, or Environmental Education, Land Appraisal, Land Management, and Real Estate or Land Acquisition.
36. 37.
Appointment to reappoint/replace Michael Crikis, “Environmental Interest", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Appointment to reappoint/replace Gary Suhl, “Agriculture", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
38. Appointment to reappoint/replace Casmore Shaw, “Civic Organization", whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Library Advisory Board
This Board consists of seven members, one appointment from each of the five County Commission Districts; and two at-large members. The membership should consist of one member of the Friends of the Library group and one member of the Osceola County Bar Association.
39. Appointment to reappoint/replace Stephanie Garber, “District 1″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
40. Appointment to replace Jefferey (Scott) Mousseau, who has termed out, “District 3″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
41. Appointment to reappoint/replace Mary Tumbleson, “District 5″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
Planning Commission
The members of the Planning Commission shall be knowledgeable in the field of Comprehensive Planning and shall be familiar with the Osceola County Comprehensive Plan, the Land Development Code, and other applicable regulations. This Commission is composed of 10 members, two being appointed from each County Commission District.
42. Appointment to reappoint/replace Michael Romack, “District 1″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
43. Appointment to replace John Perlowski, “District 1″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
44. Appointment to reappoint/replace Luis Jimenez, “District 2″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
45. Appointment to reappoint/replace Keith Trace, “District 4″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
46. Appointment to reappoint/replace Jeffrey Wolff, “District 4″, whose term expires December 31, 2014.
School Board Business Advisory Board
Categories: Engineer, Architect or Landscape Architect, Licensed Real Estate Broker, Sales Associate, MAI Appraiser, Residential or Commercial Developer, Financial Consultant, Banker, Accountant, Statistician, Economist, Urban Planner, Licensed Contractor, Biologist, Environmental Scientist, Real Estate Development Attorney, and Corporate Executive. Qualifications: Members should be persons who possess such skills as would assist in the evaluation of capital expenditures.
7 Regular Meeting – November 10, 201447. Appointment to reappoint/replace W. Turner Wallis, “Land Surveyor” position, whose term expires December 01, 2014.
48. Appointment to reappoint/replace Melvin C. Welch, “Corporate Executive” position, whose term expires December 01, 2014.
49. Appointment to reappoint/replace Shawn Hindle, “Civil Engineer” position, whose term expires December 01, 2014.
50. Appointment to reappoint/replace Stacy McCland, “Lawyer” position, whose term expires December 01, 2014.
County Administration
51. Long Range Agenda.
For Information
52. Announcement there are no Board of County Commissioners meetings scheduled on the fourth Monday of November 2014.
In accordance with Florida Statutes, Chapter 286.0105, any person wishing to appeal a decision made by the Board of County Commissioners with respect to any matter considered at such a meeting or hearing, will need a record of the proceedings. For such purposes he or she may need to ensure that a verbatim record of the proceedings is made, which may include the testimony and evidence upon which the appeal is based.

City of Kissimmee Offers Turkey Camp for Students

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (November 6, 2014) The City of Kissimmee is calling all kids! It’s time to get out the house and enjoy some fun, because good times are back at our annual Turkey Camp. Join us for 3 days of activities and planned field trips from Monday, November 24 to Wednesday, November 26.

The City of Kissimmee is offering Turkey Camp for Kindergarten through 8th grade students. Camp will be held at the Berlinsky Community House located at 300 East Monument Avenue at the Kissimmee Lakefront. The fee is $65 per child for all 3 days or $25 per day. This price includes admission to field trips and transportation, and supervision from 7:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. Campers must bring a packed lunch each day.

Field Trip destinations include Wild Florida Airboats & Wildlife Park on Tuesday, November 25, and a trip to Regal Cinemas to watch “The Penguins of Madagascar” followed by a stop at Abracadabra Ice Cream Factory on Wednesday, November 26. The deadline for registration is Wednesday, November 19. Registration is available at Oak Street Park Community Center or online at www.kissimmeeparks.org. An information packet must be completed and on file before the first day of camp.

For more information about this program and other programs at the City of Kissimmee, please call the Parks, Recreation and Public Facilities Department at 407.518.2360 or visit us online at www.kissimmeeparks.org.

The School District of Osceola County, FL
Melba Luciano, Superintendent

Press Release (English and Spanish)
November 6, 2014 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dana Schafer, Public Information Officer - Osceola School District – 407-870-4007 or 407-908-8811 (cell)

Osceola County School Board Proclaims November 2014 As Bullying Prevention Awareness Month

Students, parents, school staff, and administrators all have a role to play in preventing bullying on school campuses. As such, the Osceola County School Board has proclaimed November 2014 as Bullying Prevention Awareness Month. Throughout November, schools will be encouraging students to participate in a variety of awareness and prevention activities designed to keep Osceola schools safe.

Bullying is when physical, verbal, or emotional harm or intimidation is intentionally and repeatedly directed at a person or group of people. Sometimes it involves direct attacks such as hitting, name calling, teasing, or taunting. Sometimes it is indirect, such as spreading rumors or trying to make others reject someone. Students should feel and be safe everywhere on campus—in the cafeteria, in the library, in the rest rooms, on the bus, and on the playground. Everyone in schools in Osceola County is working together to create a climate where bullying is not acceptable or tolerated.

For more information about bullying prevention, visit www.stopbullying.gov. Individuals can call the Speakout Hotline at 1-800-423-TIPS (8477) to anonymously report anything of concern to safety and security.
City of St. Cloud offers its traditional community Thanksgiving event Nov. 22

St. Cloud, Fla. (November 6, 2014) – The City of St. Cloud Parks and Recreation staff is coordinating the 23rd Annual Community Thanksgiving Celebration for Nov. 22, 12-2 p.m., at the St. Cloud Civic Center (3001 17th St.).
City of St. Cloud officials are inviting the St. Cloud community to join families, friends, and neighbors to celebrate Thanksgiving Day. Doors open up at 11:30 a.m., and turkey and the traditional side items will be served by City officials and volunteers starting at 12 p.m. Admission is free, but donations of nonperishable food items for the St. Cloud Community Pantry are welcome and everyone is invited to bring a covered dish or dessert (if able to) to share with everyone. It is highly recommended that all covered dishes and desserts are placed in disposable containers.
“Once again, we are preparing for this traditional get-together to celebrate our blessings as the close-knit community that we are proud to be,” said Parks and Recreation Director Stephanie Holtkamp. “We all look forward to this special experience that brings people from diverse backgrounds together and promotes cultural awareness, understanding, and community building.”
For further details on this event and any other Parks and Recreation activity, project, program, or rental facility, please visit the Parks and Recreation Web page at ParksAndRecreation@stcloud.org
St. Cloud City Council Seat 4 run-off election set for Dec. 2

St. Cloud, Fla. (November 6, 2014) – City of St. Cloud reminds St. Cloud’s registered voters of the established date for the upcoming run-off election. St. Cloud City Council approved Ordinance No. 2014-05 during a council meeting March 13 to establish the guidelines for the city’s municipal elections. The regular election was held Nov. 4 with a run-off election date set for Dec. 2, if a run-off were necessary.
Per the City’s charter, a candidate must reach 50 percent of votes, plus one vote, to win an election. The unofficial final results (yet to be canvassed) for the St. Cloud Municipal Election for Seat 4 are:
· Dave Askew, 4465 votes (44.80 percent)
· Mickey Hopper, 4144 votes (41.58 percent)
New Administrative Appointment

On November 4, the Osceola County School Board approved the following administrative appointment:

Dustin Sassic, Assistant Principal at Thacker Avenue Elementary School for International Studies
During his career with the Osceola School District, Dustin Sassic has held the following positions: Teacher at Horizon Middle (2005-2006), Teacher at Cypress Elementary (2006-2010), Teacher at East Lake Elementary (2010-2011), Teacher/Dean at Narcoossee Middle (2011-2012), and Dean at Narcoossee Middle (2012 - present). He received his bachelor’s degree in Physical Education from SUNY Cortland and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from American College of Education.

City of Kissimmee Announces Temporary Lane Closures for MLK Road Project

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (November 4, 2014) — The City of Kissimmee announces intermittent lane closures on Dyer Boulevard south of Commerce Boulevard on Monday, November 10, and lane closures and lane shifts at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Thacker Avenue on Tuesday, November 11, due to asphalt milling and resurfacing. Traffic delays can be expected and the work is only expected to take one day for each location.

These road improvements are part of the on-going Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard road project.

For more information, please contact the City of Kissimmee Public Works & Engineering Department at 407.518.2170.
Kissimmee Police Looking for Armed Robbery Suspect

Kissimmee, Fla. (November 3, 2014) – Kissimmee police detectives are looking for an armed robbery suspect.

On November 3, 2014 at approximately 12:30 a.m., officers responded to Ker’s Winghouse located at 3405 W. Vine Street in Kissimmee in reference to an armed robbery.

Officers spoke with the manager who stated as he was attempting to exit the business via the side entrance, a black male burst through the side door and pointed a hand gun at his face and demanded all of the money from the safe. After receiving the undisclosed amount of cash, the suspect fled the area. No one was injured during the incident.

The suspect is described as a black male, approximately 5’6” tall with a small build. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, black jeans, black gloves and had his face covered with black silk material, possibly a do-rag.

Anyone with information about this suspect or the crime is urged to contact the Kissimmee Police Department’s Major Crimes Unit at 407-846-3333, by e-mail at seeitsayit@kissimmee.org or CRIMELINE at 1-800-423-TIPS (8477). Calls made to CRIMELINE remain anonymous, and tips that lead to the felony arrest of suspects and/or the recovery of stolen property and drugs are eligible for cash rewards of up to $1,000 dollars.

St. Cloud Parks & Recreation presents wholesome events for all to enjoy
Submitted by City of St. Cloud Public Information Office
St. Cloud, Fla. (October 23, 2014) – The City of St. Cloud Parks and Recreation staff is preparing for the upcoming November activities, including:
PegHorn Event – A PegHorn Pig-Out and Harvest Hoopla event is set for Nov. 1, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at PegHorn Nature Park & Trail (2101 PegHorn Way). The event features a barbecue competition and many activities for children. Everyone is invited.
Marina Building Banquet Hall Open House – Nov. 12, 4-7 p.m. The Marina Building Banquet Hall is located at 1104 Lakeshore Blvd., second floor. This is the ideal venue for wedding receptions, Sweet 16 and Quinceañera (15th birthday celebration) parties, office functions, and more. Stop by to see what’s available and enjoy the spectacular views from any one of the three balconies.
Movie at the Lakefront – November’s movie is Maleficent (rated PG) and it will be shown Nov. 14 starting at sunset (5:32 p.m.). A family movie is shown at Lakefront Park (1104 Lakeshore Blvd.) every month on a giant inflatable movie screen. Everyone is invited to bring lawn chairs and blankets. This year-round monthly program is free to the community.
Fishing Tournament – The Borrow Pit Pond Youth Fishing Tournament is set for Nov. 15, 8-11 a.m., at Barrow Pit Pond (off of Budinger Avenue, across the street from St. Cloud Elementary School). Registration is recommended and the cost is $5 per child (15 and younger). All participants must bring fishing poles and tackle. This is for shore fishing only and bait will be provided.
Youth Basketball – The Ron Riley Youth Basketball Winter League games begin Nov. 15 at the Civic Center (3001 17th St.).
Kids Night Out – This will be a challenging and fun Game Night that includes video and board games. November’s Kids Night Out is set for Nov. 15, 7-11 p.m., at the Civic Center. The cost is $10 per child (dinner and dessert included). The Kids Night Out program offers supervised care and fun activities for children ages 6-11 while parents enjoy an evening to themselves.
Movie Matinee – November’s movie will be “The Help” (rated PG-13) Nov. 19, 12:30 p.m., at the St. Cloud Community Center (3101 17th St.). Free movie and free popcorn for people ages 18 and up.
Community Thanksgiving – Everyone is invited to attend the 23rd Annual Community Thanksgiving Celebration Nov. 22, 12-2 p.m., at the Civic Center. Admission is free, but donations of nonperishable food items for the St. Cloud Community Pantry are welcome and everyone is invited to bring a covered dish or dessert if able to (in disposable containers) to share with others.
Day Camp – Three day camps are set for Nov. 24, 25, and 26, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., at the Civic Center. Children in kindergarten and up to 14 years old are invited to take part of each exciting day camp. The cost per day/per child is $20 for Osceola County residents and $25 for non-Osceola County resident. Registration is required. Discounts may be available for those who qualify.

For details on any Parks and Recreation activity, project, program, or rental facility, please visit the Parks and Recreation Web page at www.stcloud.org, e-mail ParksAndRecreation@stcloud.org, or call (407) 957-7243.
Note: Schedule is subject to change without advanced notice.
Osceola School District Receives National Distinguished Service and Leadership Award For Outreach To Homeless Students

The National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) has selected the Osceola School District as the sole recipient of the prestigious 2014 NAEHCY Award for Distinguished Service and Leadership for its outstanding efforts to provide service to the homeless children, youth, and families in our community. This national award highlights the school district’s focus to ensure that every child and youth experiencing homelessness is successful in school, from early childhood through higher education. In order to narrow the achievement gap among homeless students and permanently-housed students and to raise all students’ achievement levels, the district’s Families In Transition (F.I.T.) program implemented a “100,000 Books Project” to promote reading literacy over the summer of 2014.

The goal of this project was to build a consistent, year-round culture of reading, especially for underprivileged students. The F.I.T. Program partnered with Superintendent Melba Luciano as she challenged students to read 12 million minutes over the summer as part of the Superintendent’s Summer Reading Challenge. Through an outside vendor, Osceola School District’s Special Programs Department purchased 25 large pallets of gently-used chapter books for $5,000, which was paid for from a donation from Walt Disney Resorts. With over 8,500 hours of volunteer service from community members and 21 different community agencies, the books were cleaned and bagged so that every Osceola student in kindergarten through Grade 3 was able to receive five books to keep. For the district’s 4,500 homeless students in many cases, these books started a student’s home library as no books were in the home, and allowed them to participate in the Superintendent’s Summer Reading Challenge like permanently-housed students with books of their own.

The 100,000 Books Project was a huge success. The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge encouraged children to read books and log their minutes as they read for the world record during the summer to help avoid the “Summer Slide”, the loss of skills that can happen while out of school. Kids from 7, 285 schools worldwide read and logged an impressive 304 million minutes, breaking last year’s world record of 176 million minutes. Boggy Creek Elementary, one of the Title I schools in Osceola County, earned the number one spot in the world with students reading close to 11 million minutes alone. Two other Osceola County schools ranked among the Top 20 schools in the 2014 Scholastic Summer Challenge for reading minutes: Flora Ridge Elementary ranked number ten in the world with 3,837,367 minutes read and Reedy Creek Elementary ranked number thirteen in the world with 3,334,409 minutes read. These three Osceola schools will be listed with the other Top 20 schools in the 2015 Scholastic Book of World Records.

“Through planning, monetary donations, collaboration and partnerships, and volunteerism, the 100,000 Books Project instilled the love for reading in the hearts of those children living in deep poverty,” said Superintendent Melba Luciano. “Winning this national award speaks to how the Osceola School District is reaching its vision to outperform and to help each and every one of our students succeed.”

Rating: 4.3 out of 126 votes cast