|JULY – list of veterans, military and patriotic events in Central FL
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*Event information is concentrated mostly on the Central Florida counties served by the new VA Hospital at Lake Nona – Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Brevard, Lake and Volusia. However, other events elsewhere are considered based upon uniqueness and groups best served.
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NOTE: I’ve gotten REALLY disappointed and discouraged at the lack of notifications of events! There was a big lack of Independence Day notices. I can’t share what I don’t know. And I’ve been having to DIG and even BEG for information because I can’t read minds. I pay $65/mo., myself, to send out the event lists, using Constant Contact mass email due to the sheer number of recipients. If I don’t receive notices and can’t relay the info, I may choose to discontinue…
Community Park Grand Opening – Sat. July 13 – Join Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and District 1 Commissioner Jim Gray for the grand opening of Heroes Community Park in Lake Nona. 9am with a brief ribbon cutting ceremony followed with festivities throughout the morning with music, bounce house, toddler soft area, etc. This new park is located near Laureate Park Elementary School across the pond from the VA at 14028 Centerline Drive, Orlando, 32827. 24 acres with 4 multi-use fields with lighting for night activities, concession stand with restrooms, team benches, bleachers. Park includes picnic pavilions – 1 large and 1 medium, 12-foot wide trail for walking/jogging. Info: tara.russakov@ orlando .gov 407-246-4245.
Astronaut Parade – Sat. July 13 – See the heroes as they ride through the City of Cocoa Beach in convertible Corvettes and witness the future of technology and innovation throughout the space industry! Free to the community! Parade – 9:30am- 11:30am; After Street Party – 11:30am– 4pm. Location: City of Cocoa Beach, 2 S. Orlando Ave.
K.I.S.S. care packaging – Sat. July 13 – Kids in Support of Soldiers (K.I.S.S.) will be packing care packages for the troops, at 10am at the VFW Post 2093 located at 4444 Edgewater Dr., Orlando, 32804. Treats and other items to send are welcomed as those deployed appreciate the packages. This month, there are about 175 boxes that need to go out. Donations are welcomed to offset shipping fees and extra monies allows the children to purchase care items for the military. Any kids needing community service hours, should arrive at 9am, so they can receive the maximum hours. Have a loved one serving abroad? Send in his/her name, info to get a local care package. (August packing planned for Sat. Aug 10 at American Legion Post 35 in Mount Dora.) Also see fundraiser for Aug 24. Info: kisssecretary@ gmail .com 407-247-4030. See their website at kidsinsupportofsoldiers .org
Fundraising Casino Night – Sat. July 13 – Fundraising subcommittee provides monetary assistance for local project efforts for veterans that would otherwise fall between some gaps. Projects would include VA associated activities: adaptive sports programs, Voluntary Services office, etc. VFW Post#2093, 4444 Edgewater Dr., Orlando. Doors open at 4pm, Dinner at 5pm, and Casino starts at 6pm. Public is invited. Tickets are $20 per person, $35 per couple includes dinner and $3000 casino chips. Roulette, Black Jack, and Craps tables, Texas Hold’Em and Slot Machines, prizes, raffles. Info: kristabguthrie@ outlook .com 407-473-2507
“Day of Giving” – Mon July 15 – Homes For Our Troops is celebrating 15 years of Building Homes and Rebuilding Lives with its first “Day of Giving”, a 24-hour online fundraising event with a goal to raise $25,000! This is an opportunity for you to join HFOT’s crucial mission of building and donating specially adapted custom homes for severely injured post-9/11 Veterans across the country. Several wounded veterans in the Central Florida area have received these special homes in the past and some are featured on the national website: www. hfotusa .org Donations may be made throughout the day at the website or the Facebook page at homesforourtroops
Prime Day – July 15 & 16 – Shop at smile.amazon .com on Prime Day and support Camaraderie Foundation, or other Central Florida not-for-profit organizations. At smile.amazon .com you’ll find the same products and same Amazon.com prices but when you select a NFP organization (like Camaraderie Foundation) as your chosen charity a portion of the proceeds from your purchases – at no additional cost to you – will go to Veterans and their families! That helps our local communities!
Vietnam Veterans of America Daytona Beach Chapter 1048 mtg – Thurs. July 18 – Come out and socialize with an active VVA chapter. Meeting starts 6:30pm at VFW Post 3282 in Port Orange. 5810 S Williamson Blvd, Port Orange, 32128. Social hour starts at 5pm. Learn about new legislation and changes to VA benefits. Join, bring your DD214. Contact Rod at cobra101st@ gmail .com or 386.690.9553 or www. vva1048 .com
Fundraising for Special House for Wounded Warrior – Fri July 19 – Join Ronda and Steve Kaplan for “A Night at the Piano Bar” fundraising event for a home with adaptations for Sgt. Pam Kelly. Lake Miona Recreation Center located in The Villages, 6–9pm with open seating, Tickets for $15, BYOB and snacks, although some light snacks will be provided. Info: www. villagersforveterans .org 516-220-5068.
One Giant Leap – 50 Year Anniversary Celebration of the Moon Landing – Sat. July 20 – Many veterans and their families in our communities were active in the Space Race and the programs afterwards. The Orange County Regional History Center and WUCF host this event from 10am – 2pm at the History Center, 65 E. Central Blvd, Orlando, 32801. Enjoy fun family activities, come dressed in 1960s Mod or space-themed attire. PBS character “Jet” will be present from 12noon – 2pm. Visit our neighbor, the Orlando Public Library, for more programs and events, also from 10am – 2pm. Admission to the History Center is free for the event. Info: 407-836-8500 or 407-823-0899
Back to School Family Fun Day – Sat. July 27 – Join Camaraderie Foundation, Operation Homefront and Home Depot to a fun back to school event. Operation Homefront’s Back to School Brigade will provide each of the military children registered a backpack stuffed with school supplies. Home Depot will host workshops where kids will be able to complete project kits that they can take home. All at no cost! Other prizes and giveaways will be available. Location, time and registration available at Camaraderie Foundation website, Programs section. Info: 407-841-0071 events@ camaraderiefoundation .org
Fundraiser at Casselberry Veterans Club – Sat. July 27 – Christmas in July, Bake Sale and Yard Sale at Casselberry Veterans (CVI) located at 200 Concord Dr., Casselberry, 32707. Time not provided, open to public – call 407 260-1404 to inquire. At the same time, ask how to become a member!
Korean War Armistice Commemoration – Sat July 27 – Korean War veterans can join some of the local Korean community for the 66th Korean War Armistice. Gathering at 12noon at Mikado Japanese Seafood Buffet, 851 S State Road 434, Unit 1130, Altamonte Springs, 32714. Consider joining The Mid-Florida Chapter #173 of KWVA – it meets on the third Thursday of each month, 11am, at the Casselberry Veterans Club building, 200 Concord Dr, Casselberry, 32707. All are welcomed! Info: Chuck at 407-252-7447 ctravers@ yahoo .com
Descendants of Korean War veterans: Consider supportive membership in this organization!
VA Resource Fair – Tues. July 30 – 4th Annual VA Resource Fair of Cultivating Community Connections for Veterans. 9am – 12noon at Veterans Wellness Recovery Center, 3731 S. Clyde Morris Blvd, Port Orange, 32129. Resources include vendors. “Want to better understand your Finances?” “Learn to fly fish” “Do I qualify for a free computer?”, also: Volunteering, jobs, activities, etc. Free haircuts, free chair massages, and more. Extra parking at Covenant United Methodist Church. Info: 386-763-8300; or Orlando VAMC Public Affairs office: 407-631-4436 or vhaorlpublicaffairs@ va .gov
Charity Golf Tournament – Fri. Aug 2 – 7th annual Bob Bret Memorial Charity Golf Tournament at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club, Grand Lakes. Bob Bret was an avid supporter and engaged member of the local Central Florida Navy League, who for many years, donated his time and talent to organizing a golf tournament in honor of the Navy’s birthday. He passed away in 2013, leaving a legacy of service and devotion. 4040 Central Florida Parkway Orlando, 32837 (South Orlando, south of the Beachline on John Young Parkway.) Special golfer room rate: $147/night at the RITZ-CARLTON! The weekend will be filled with lots of fun, including the Ritz Spa, the lazy river, volleyball, and many outdoor activities. Also onsite is Ritz Kids to help keep the little ones occupied! Cost: $110 per person, $400 per team, or $95 for active duty servicemen, includes lunch & range balls. Tournament proceeds support Navy Junior ROTC and the Sea Cadet Scholarships, the Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC) in Orlando and Port Canaveral United States Coast Guard Cutter Vigilant crew Morale, Welfare and Recreation Fund, and other CFNL support activities as identified. Website info: cfnavyleague .org, Events section, or rcutler@ aafmaa .com
MOPH Volusia County Chapter 316 mtg – Sat Aug 3 – Hosted by Military Order of the Purple Heart Volusia County Chapter 316, 1:30 – 2:30pm at 5810 S Williamson Blvd, Port Orange, 32128. ALL Purple Heart recipients are welcome! Info: Rod Phillips cobra101st@ gmail .com 386.690.9553
Pipes, Drums & Patriots – Sat. Aug 3 – This concert event provides a mixture of traditional Celtic and American patriotic music, and with a special Tribute for The Fallen. Held at the Peabody Auditorium in Daytona Beach at 7pm, with a VIP reception following the concert. Includes recording artist Joann Gilmartin’s “Glascow Girls” Celtic Band, several bagpipe bands lead by world noted persons. Hosted by the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1048 and ALL proceeds donated to local veterans causes. Sponsorships ($100 to $5000) welcomed to help offset costs. Tickets start at $12. Info: Bob Adkins at 614-395-2727 or Rod Phillips at 386-690-9553 Website: www. vva1048 .com
On The Horizon
Aug. 7 –Inaugural Tuskegee Airmen Charity Golf Tournament. Sponsorship opportunities. This Wednesday event will be a t Rosen Shingle Creek golf club. See Facebook page “Florida Tuskegee Airmen – General Daniel “Chappie” James, Jr. Chapter.
Aug. 10 – Lobster Fest/Beach Party at Casselberry Veterans Club. Info: 407 260-1404.
Aug. 13 – Space Coast FAVOB network mtg for veteran business owners at Hell n’ Blazes Brewing Co. See Facebook site or www. spacecoastfavob .org
Aug. 29 – Casino Night at the Mezz – Hosted by the Central Florida Marine Corps Foundation to support CFMCF Scholarships, iDignity and Camaraderie Foundation. Info: email@example.com
Sept. 7 – American Patriot Gala – Camaraderie Foundation celebrates their 10 Year Anniversary featuring a special recognition of current and past supporters and volunteers. The evening will feature a cocktail reception, silent and live auctions and entertainment. Sponsorship opportunities are available. 10 years of Saving lives, Saving marriages, Saving families. Info: events@ camaraderiefoundation .org 407-841-0071
Honor Flights – There are NO Honor Flights returning thru OIA until August 24. They are taking a break – Washington DC is too hot and humid and crowded in the summer.
Mentor Leadership Program – Tampa – Camaraderie Foundation identified a need and expanded services to Tampa. Applications for 2019/2020 Mentor Leadership Class in Tampa application date is extended. (the Orlando Class is closed). Camaraderie Foundation partners with local business members to provide a leadership program to assist transitioning service members and their spouses in preparing for a career in the local community. In 2019/2020 we are opening the class up to spouses. See the website, Programs section. Info: 407-841-0071 admin@ camaraderiefoundation .org
Business Incubation Program for Entrepreneurs – Univ. of Central FL offers assistance with the many aspects of starting or advancing businesses, including veteran owned businesses. Expert advice, mentoring, and classes available – See incubator.ucf .edu/ for more information and enrollment. A wide variety of class topics are offered on various dates and locations – held in Apopka, Winter Springs, Kissimmee, and other sites. IE: July 17: “How to Become a GSA Vendor” (GSA Approval is a status used to describe organizations that have been approved to sell to the United States Government through the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA).) This is a must if you want to start or grow a business. Info: michael.weiss@ ucf .edu 407-823-2346
Lucky’s Market selected Camaraderie Foundation as one of the three charity partners for the store on 3171 S Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32806. Starting May 26 to August 17 every time you bring a reusable bag to the Lucky’s Market on Orange Ave, you will receive a wooden dime for each one. You then have the opportunity to donate that dime to Camaraderie Foundation. At the end of the quarter, Lucky’s will double the amount raised.
15 for 15 Campaign! – Camaraderie Foundation has received a donation match challenge from a very generous donor who wants to help us serve 15 additional Veterans by the end of the year. We need to raise $15,000 to match the donation we’ll receive from our donor. With these funds we can provide counseling services for 15 Veterans, Service Members or their loved ones. Your contributions will help heal Veterans and families struggling with PTSD and other “invisible” wounds. Go to website, Campaigns section, then Matching Gifts. Info: 407-841-0071 admin@ camaraderiefoundation .org
Veterans Needed for 2 Dissertation Studies – A Doctoral Student at the University of Central Florida, is doing research on how sounds and smells alter brain activity. PTSD stressors can be triggered by these. Any Post 9/11 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, active duty regulars, reservists and national guard service personnel are needed to assist in this study. If you don’t have PTSD, your results can be compared as a baseline to others who do have reactions. Total time involved is about 3 hours, and is flexible to your schedule. You can help future veterans and military with your participation. In return you will receive a $75 Amazon Gift Card for each study. Keep and use the gift card or donate it to your favorite local charity. Info: Michael Gramlich, M.S., Clinical Psychology Doctoral Candidate, UCF RESTORES at 407-823-3910.
Civil Air Patrol (CAP) – Every Tuesday evening – Central Florida Composite Squadron (SER-FL-259) meets every Tuesday from 6:30-8:30pm at Elks Lodge #1079, 12 N. Primrose Dr. Orlando, 32803. CAP supports communities with emergency response, diverse aviation and ground services, youth development and promotion of air, space and cyber power. Youth and adults can participate in numerous ways. POC: 1st Lt. Nina Burks, CAP Squadron Commander at 713.208.8604 U.S. Air Force Auxiliary GoCivilAirPatrol .com www. flwg.us
Veterans in crisis – For you or someone you know. Suicide is a medical emergency. If you are experiencing thoughts of suicide, know that you are not alone and care should be sought immediately by calling 911. Free, confidential resources are instantly available through the Military Crisis Line to aid you if you are in crisis.
Call 800-273-8255 and press 1,
OR chat online now for 24/7 access to trained counselors who understand what service members and military families are coping with. Website at veteranscrisisline
OR: text 838255 for 24/7 confidential assistance. They are there because they care….
Camaraderie Foundation in Central Florida provides resources for private and confidential Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) counseling for Post 9/11 veterans/warriors and their families. They also have connections in other areas, other states. It works. It HAS saved lives, saved marriages and saved families. camaraderiefoundation .org Contact 407-841-0071
Caring and sharing,
Cathy Haynes chaynes11629@ yahoo .com
Member/volunteer/supporter of numerous veteran and military organizations