Marion Landing 11-23-2012

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Landing Lites holiday concert will be on Dec. 1

 By Diane Bress

 The Landing Lites holiday concert will be held next Saturday, Dec. 1, at 7 p.m. in the Lifestyle Center. Tickets are $5 each and will continue to be sold next week, as well as at the door. The concert will be a blend of 13 sacred and secular music selections featuring two soloists: Karen Blinkhorn, music director at Sunrise Elementary School, a third generation oboist who has performed with the Ocala Symphony Orchestra; and our own Lina Vallejo, who will sing an a capella arrangement of “Ave Maria.” This is a Marion Landing holiday tradition you won’t want to miss, and this year’s concert will be dedicated to the memory of a long-time Landing Lites member Marian Curtin.



New board members chosen

The Association of Marion Landing Owners, Inc., held their annual Members Meeting on Friday, Nov. 9, at which time Board President Joe Raffony gave the board’s annual report, and homeowners elected two of their five-member board of directors. Directors are elected for staggered two-year terms, with three directors elected in odd years and two directors elected in even years. Elected this year were Jim Adwell and Bill Wurst, who will join current board directors Joe Raffony, Bob Fink and Connie Rowe in carrying out the business of the community. Immediately after the annual meeting, the board held an organizational meeting, and the 2013 slate of officers is as follows: Joe Raffony, president; Bob Fink, 1st vice president; Bill Wurst, 2nd vice president; Connie Rowe, secretary; and Jim Adwell, treasurer. A regular board meeting will be held on Friday, Dec. 7, at the Lifestyle Center. All residents are invited to attend.

Also announced at the annual meeting was the Volunteer Group of the Year: The Landing Lites, Marion Landing’s community chorus. Accepting the award on behalf of the group was Marilee Hickman, assistant director of the Landing Lites. The 40-plus member chorus, under the direction of Floyd Hickman, performs two concerts per year, often with guest soloists and performers, and is one of the most popular groups within the community.



Volunteers recognized

At the Nov. 13 Tuesday Social, John and Noreen Metzger were recognized as the community’s volunteers of the month. In her presentation, Board Secretary Connie Rowe introduced these volunteers as follows: “This month we are honoring a couple who moved to Marion Landing in 1998 from my home state, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Since moving here 14 years ago, they have been two very active residents in our community. Both are current members of our Patrol Group and the Sunshine Committee, and are former members of the Little Theatre Group.  They are very involved in many of the activities available in the Landing such as cards and bowling and participate yearly in the Senior Games. She is a member of the Landing Lites chorus and he does the video taping of all their shows, as well as various other special events held at our Lifestyle Center. For many years, she has been and continues to be a proof reader for The Communicator, and he is always available to assist the Sound Group. It is my great pleasure to present the Volunteer Recognition Award to Noreen and John Metzger.”

The Metzgers’ engraved plaque will join the more than 150 other volunteers recognized by the community since 2001, all of which are posted in the Lifestyle Center. Award recipients are chosen from a list of residents who are nominated for the award by their peers. If you would like to nominate a fellow resident for a volunteer recognition award, please forward your recommendation, in writing, to a Board member, member of the Activities Support Committee, or the Activities Director.



Holidayfood drive continues

Marion Landing’s annual food drive to benefit Interfaith Emergency Services is now under way. Almost any unopened item not requiring refrigeration, such as canned fruit and vegetables, pasta, cereal and peanut butter and hygiene products such as tooth paste and deodorant are always needed.

Marion Landing has been conducting an annual food drive for many years, and Gloria and Dave Wilberg have led the effort since 2004, along with Mary Ann Hall and Dee Stahl, who coordinate our monthly food drives. To date, Marion Landing has collected more than 10,000 pounds of food. This year, the food drive will run four weeks, so let’s do our best to help Interfaith provide packages to needy families for the holidays. Donations may be brought to the Lifestyle Center and placed in the baskets underneath the residents’ mail boxes or brought to any of the Tuesday Socials through Dec. 4. All donations are very much appreciated.



Residents at space shuttle’s retirement

On Friday, Nov. 2, Marion Landing residents Paula and Jim Adwell were at the Kennedy Space Center for the Atlantis rollover, as it traveled 9.8 miles down the road to its new home just off-site at the Kennedy Space Center’s Visitor Complex. “It was an amazing day, and we were proud to be there,” said Paula. “As the shuttle went by, the wing actually passed over us; and I was so impressed with the size of it. It was also interesting that you were able to see how scarred and burned the tiles were.” Paula was our “celebrity for the day” as she was interviewed by WKMG Local 6 News reporter Mike DeForest and appeared on the broadcast that evening. This exciting day was her gift to Jim as he celebrated his birthday enjoying this memorable event.



House decorating contest

It’s time to start thinking about decorating your house for the holidays, and with some creativity and imagination, you just may win a prize. This year, there’s a new twist to a community tradition. We are requiring residents who would like their homes judged to sign up on the sheet posted on the Activity Wall hanging in the Lifestyle Center. You may sign up between Nov. 26 and Dec. 15; and decorations must be up and completed by Dec. 15 to give Leta Simmons and Harry Therien plenty of time to take pictures of the registered houses. These photos will be on display in the Lifestyle Center from Dec. 24 through Dec. 31; and all homeowners are invited to vote for their favorite display. Ballots will be available during Tuesday morning socials and in the Activities Office. The winners will be announced and prizes awarded at the Jan. 8 Tuesday morning social. For more information, please see the flyer posted on the Activity Wall.




Just a reminder that, this year, holiday decorating of the Lifestyle Center will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 28, from 9 a.m. to noon and, if needed, continue on Friday, Nov. 30. Along with our Angel Tree and Patriotic Trees, one of the large trees in the great room is decorated with ornaments donated by residents of the community. If you’re new to Marion Landing, or if you haven’t previously donated an ornament, we’d love to have you bring one down to place on this tree. Some folks donate an ornament special to them or one that is representative of their home state. The ornaments are kept and placed on the tree from year to year. It’s fun to see the varied array of ornaments from all over the country and a pleasure to see your ornament displayed from year to year. Also, residents can bring their “Holiday Card to the Community”, which will be placed on the Angel Tree after all the angels have been adopted. Decorating the Lifestyle Center is always a lot of fun, and we’d love to have you come down and participate.



Crafters donate each year

They knit, crochet, quilt and sew. They are the Marion Landing Charity Crafters. Noella Salas, Olga Mehinovich, Ann Ferran, Laura Jesse, Pat Wurst and Evelyn Olsen faithfully meet every Monday at 1 p.m. to work on their projects, share their ideas and collaborate on the club’s latest endeavors. All the items the ladies expertly craft are donated to local charities; and this year, the crafters are pleased to donate a variety of items to the Salvation Army and Ocala Oaks Rehabilitation Center. Handmade items included 20 baby sweaters and 2 hats, 4 baby blankets, and 10 children’s vests, as well as 12 cosmetic bags with cosmetics, 2 sheet sets and socks. Ocala Oaks received 8 quilted lap robes, shawls and slippers.

The crafters gratefully accept donations of material, yarn and notions which may be dropped off in the wicker basket inside the Craft Room in the Lifestyle Center. Any resident who wishes to join this very worthwhile group may submit their name to the Activities Office or stop by the Craft Room on Mondays at 1 p.m.



Travel news

If you are interested in any of the trips listed below, details are available on the flyers posted on the Travel Board in the Lifestyle Center, or you may call 352-237-7152 for more information. Trips are open to the general public if space allows.

Be part of one of the first groups to sail aboard the brand new cruise ship Celebrity Reflection departing from Miami on Jan. 5, 2013, with stops in San Juan, St. Maarten and St. Kitts. Reservations are being accepted for this seven night Eastern Caribbean cruise, with rates including all port charges, taxes, round-trip bus from Ocala, gratuities and one-hour open bar cocktail party. A $250 deposit will hold your space.

Join the group going to Orlando for Lobbies, Lites and ICE on Thursday, Dec. 6. Tour some of the Disney hotels decorated for Christmas and enjoy all the Christmas lights. Then tour the Gaylord Palms ICE!, featuring DreamWorks Merry Madagascar and end the day with a fabulous dinner at the Gaylord Palms—all for $77 per person.

Spend the holidays at the Beau Rivage in Biloxi. This Christmas trip will be Dec. 23 to 26 and is $189 per person, double occupancy and $259 for a single. The trip includes transportation, bus refreshments, prizes, bingo, movies, driver tips, hotel and baggage; two breakfast buffets per person; $25 free play at the Beau Rivage; and a visit to Boomtown with $5 free play and free lunch buffet. Check the flyer posted on the Travel Board for more details and to sign up.

Reservations are being accepted for a day at Tampa Bay Downs on Feb. 15. Try your luck betting on the horses as well as enjoy a great meal. The cost is $54 per person, which includes clubhouse admission, racing program, trophy presentation in Winner’s Circle, and a hot buffet luncheon with carving station in the Clubhouse Turn Dining Room. It’s a sure bet that you’ll have a great day.

Do you like to plan ahead? Then mark your calendar for January 19 to 26, 2014 (yes, that’s 2014) for a western Caribbean cruise on “Freedom of the Seas”. You will visit ports in Labadee (Haiti), Jamaica, Grand Cayman and Cozumel. Inside cabins include the cruise, port charges and government taxes, as well as a $50 bonus per cabin shipboard credit. More information is listed on the Travel Board.

If you’re thinking about taking a vacation in the spring of 2014, our Travel Club has made plans for a terrific European riverboat cruise on the Elbe River. Enjoy time in Berlin, Dresden, Wittenberg and Prague and includes 7 nights aboard the M/S River Allegro, which was built specifically for cruising the Elbe, and was recently refurbished with the travelers' needs and comfort in mind. More details on this spectacular trip are listed in the brochure posted on the Travel Board.

Diane Bress is Marion Landing’s Activities Director and an employee of Leland Management, Inc.