June 2017 Around Town 1

Cape Coral pastor takes on the Appalachian Trail

Pastor Tom Hafer, director of spiritual services for Gulf Coast Village in Cape Coral and ordained minister with Volunteers of America (VOA), will begin a 2,190-mile journey along the Appalachian Trail, beginning April 24 at Springer Mountain in Georgia and concluding October 15 at Mount Katahdin in Maine. Following his motto, “care for yourself to better care for others,” Hafer will take on a six-month journey dedicated to mental, physical and spiritual well-being.

Taking on the Appalachian Trail is no easy feat for a man in his 50s. To complete the thru-hike journey within six months, Hafer will hike approximately 15-20 miles each day, and will follow a special diet that will replenish the additional calories he will burn on a daily basis. People can follow along Hafer’s journey via Facebook at Facebook.com/TomHaferSpeaker.

Mariner High School JROTC Team to Compete in National Leadership Bowl Championship in Washington, D.C.

After advancing through two phases of online competition, the Mariner High School’s JROTC Leadership Team composed of Hailey Dennard, Mason Dennard, Rhys Bastien and Jonathan Torres will compete in person at the Championship event in Washington, DC. The 2017 U.S. Army JROTC Leadership Bowl Championship will be held on the campus of The Catholic University of America, June 23-27, 2016. This event is sponsored by the U.S. Army Cadet Command, JROTC Headquarters and is conducted by College Options Foundation. The team is coached by Sergeant Major Kim Williams.

Mariner High School JROTC team earned top scores out of the 1,378 U.S. Army JROTC teams that competed from around the world. The team is one of only forty Army JROTC Leadership Bowl teams in the nation to advance to the National Leadership Bowl competition, which includes an all-expense paid trip to the Championship event in DC. During the two fast-paced preliminary rounds, cadets were tested on their knowledge of current events, leadership values, and leadership skills.

The JROTC Leadership & Academic Bowl (JLAB) is a nationally recognized competition created exclusively for JROTC students. By participating, cadets learn the values of citizenship, academic competition, and college opportunity. The competition creates tremendous opportunities for JROTC cadets by allowing them to demonstrate leadership and academic abilities.

College Options Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the academic development of high school students and assisting them in their preparation for higher education. Using academic competitions, college exam study guides, college admissions tutorials and personalized counseling, College Options Foundation has assisted the nation’s JROTC cadets worldwide for over a decade.

Centenarian Celebrates 103rd Birthday

Mary Whitmore celebrated her 103rd birthday at a party given in her honor by the staff of Gulf Coast Village, where she resides. Upon opening her first birthday present, she exclaimed, “Lemon drops! My favorite!”

Whitmore’s shining, thick white hair and smooth complexion belie her longevity. Her secret: “My mother was a beauty. I had good training. I’m a peaceful person.” Staff member, Violanda Firmin added, “Mary’s happy. She’s had her church and so many friends.

Born in 1914 in Pennsylvania, Whitmore first worked for a department store, then for an oil company. She and her husband, Albert, whom she married when she was in her mid-thirties, retired to Southwest Florida. Albert passed away in 1996.

Whitmore used to enjoy dancing, picnics in the park and sewing. “I didn’t make ALL my clothes, only something I needed for a special occasion.”

Friend, Don Reisinger, couldn’t attend the party. Using Facetime, he called the cell phone of Whitmore’s friend, Flo Laflam. Flo handed the phone to an amazed Whitmore, who giggled at Don’s image, “I can see you!” Don laughed, “I see you, too!

While digging into a huge piece of birthday cake, Whitmore smiled, “I’ve had a good life and here I am!”

Cape Coral Soccer Association Players Sign Scholarship Contracts at Pelican Field

Ten seniors from the Cape Coral Soccer Association ceremonially signed college contracts this past April. This marks the end of their journey with the association as they embark on new adventures.

Carmean the Association’s director shares, “If your entire focus is on getting a scholarship you will miss the wonderful journey. Most of the players that do get scholarships simple play for the love of the game and that pushes them to be great enough to play in college.”

Their dedication and work ethic is truly an inspiration. Congratulations, ladies! Cape Coral Lifestyle Magazine wishes you the best of luck this fall.

Alexis Abene- Broward College

Adrienne Baker- Mississippi Valley State University

Madeleine Cole- Erskine College

Kendal Davis-Keiser University

Sara Delucca-University of North Florida

Victoria Mayo- Western Kentucky University

Marianna Scine-Webber International

Zoey Spitzer- Florida Gulf Coast University

Olivia Talmage- Rollins College

Kayla Thorne- Broward College

Meet the Founding Members

The Men’s Network is the first all men’s group in SWFL. This 501c3 organization is bringing a new concept to networking in SWFL.

“The intersection of networking amongst male professionals and mentorship with youth boys”

To achieve both goals, the group will meet twice a month. The members and sponsored guest will meet the first meeting of the month for networking and leadership workshops. The workshops will be led by Bernd Bahlke President of Crestcom a B2B Leadership Development expert. The group will sponsor a youth boys’ organization each quarter. The sponsored boys and their families are invited to the second meeting of the month. Those boys will be exposed to three members’ businesses that sponsored quarter. Career day, vision boards, varies youth workshops are just a few activities that will take place at these second meetings.

In honor of Father’s Day the group officially launches June 2017. The Men’s Network is bringing the 1st Annual Father’s Day BBQ event to our community June 18th. For monthly meeting dates/locations and tickets to June’s event follow on FaceBook the Men’s Network.

About the Founder/ First Lady

Varshalynn Natal is an entrepreneur on the rise who has earned the title of “Networking Queen” because of her dedication to networking in the SWFL community. As an ambassador for several all-women groups her desire to create something significant to foster our future generation of men, Varshalynn founded The Men’s Network.

“Behind a group of Men is a Woman with a vision”.