Saturday, May 5, 2007

Closed on the Building & into ACTION!

Holy Purple Cow!

The week has been a blur. We started on Monday by closing on the building. Holly and I met with the previous owners, an AmSouth (now Mercantile Bank) Rep., the representative from Churchill Title and Ruth P from Stonebridge Realty. (They had to bring in extra chairs!)

After lots of signing and explaining the keys were presented to Holly. We took some pictures, shook hands and left. Reminded me of the feeling I had when I left the Hospital with my first child... Bridget. I remember closing the passenger side door for Holly... climbing in behind the wheel... turning the ignition and thinking quietly to myself... "Now what?" Despite those small moments of brief uncertaintly... I know it ALWAYS works out.

As if to put an exclaimation point on that, it has been nonstop action on all fronts.

We had a Gold video team come and shoot video inside the new building. (It looked awesome). We had the power turned on... as well as the water (more on that later). We have vacuumed, trimmed bushes, picked up trash... tons of work. And there is still much more to do. If you can volunteer any time... any time at all... PLEASE contact me. Even if it is just an hour or two on the weekend... or after work. There is much you can help with. Bring the kids there is stuff for them as well.

More details to follow.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Community Pulls off 10X Expansion!

Ok, so that is the headline I want to write.

It's not done yet... But the feedback I am getting from everyone right now leads me to believe it will happen. Our Expansion Meetings have been very successful.

The buzz is starting to kick in. We just need more bees!

Can you be a bee? Not a full time bee mind you. Just a part time bee, or even an occasional bee. Heck, an accidental bee would even help. All we need to do is get the word out.

There are several key projects right now that we need some help with. It doesn't have to be overwhelming. In fact it really is a lot of fun. You will be working with an incredible team of professionals and backing up one of the most exciting and important projects in the field of social betterment.

Obvious help is needed in the renovations area as well as fundraising.

We are having an organizational meeting:

When: Saturday April the 28th at 2:00pm
Where: Community Learning Center at 1611 North Fort Harrison.

Won't you please join us?

I promise you will not be disappointed that you did.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Expansion Meeting 4

We had our next Expansion Meeting for the Community Learning Center.

This time it was the executives of the Junior Story Tellers of Tampa Bay. This rapidly expanding youth theatre group specializes in doing performances based on the Way to Happiness. Everyone was very excited about the potential of the new building and immediately started creating on it. Additionally they all agreed to spread the word to other members of the community about the project and get their support.

Several made committments that night to help. THANKS SO MUCH!

This Saturday... (whoa... that is tomorrow...) We will be hosting two additional meetings, one at 11:00am and the other at 6:00pm. Both will last about an hour. We will meet in the parking lot at 1411 North Fort Harrison and then we will hold the meeting at the Community Learning Center at 1611 North Fort Harrison.

We have been handing out flyers and making calls on it.

I hope to see you there.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Come to the Meeting on Saturday

This is an important meeting. The time has come to move beyond US and THEM and concentrate on WE.

WE can make a difference in the community. Together WE can come together to make this happen.

"The world demands the quality of youth; not a time of life but a state of mind, a temper of the will, a quality of imagination, a predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the life of ease." - Robert Kennedy

See you this coming Saturday.

Saturday Expansion Meeting #4

Yesterday, the Junior Story Tellers of Tampa Bay held their monthly meeting at the 1411 North Fort Harrison (the new building).

The Junior Story Tellers (in case you didn't know) is a really super group of young people and their parents who perform plays based on precepts in the Way to Happiness. Currently they have two plays and three troops performing at Schools, Churches and Mosques around Tampa Bay. The parents were flipped out at the new building and all of the great opportunities that it provides for community involvement as well as youth activities for young members of our church.

We are going to hold two more Expansion meetings this Saturday. The executives of the Junior Story Tellers have agreed to help promote and do call-in for them. (We need your help as well).

The events are both going to be held this coming Saturday the 12th. The first will be at 11:00am and the second will be at 6:00pm. Each meeting will last an hour and a half, their will be drinks and snacks provided. (Feel free to bring your kids).

This is an important event (and I promise you will have fun). Please RSVP by calling me. Send e-mails to your distribution lists,, call friends, etc. We are shooting to have 400 people attend.

It is for the kids of the community. Ours and everyone elses.

Please help.

Click here for photos of past events

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Expansion Meetings a Success!

Expansion Meeting #1 from Saturday March 24th

Thank you David Ziff and Janice Beaty for taking and sending me the terrific photos from Expansion Meeting #1.

We had a great Expansion Meeting #2 last night with several parents, kids, and even a minister from the community--all interested in helping us to create a great, safe space for our kids to learn and grow! I kind of blew it and didn't have a camera lined up for meeting number 2 (so I may be calling the folks that were there last night to "stage" a shot at some point.)

I do have a photagrapher lined up tonight and will try not to drop that ball again.

This is historic and I want to document it every step of the way! (Alice Messick even took video for us Saturday!)

Click here for photos from Saturday's Event

Sunday, March 25, 2007

New Building at 1411 North Ft. Harrison

Welcome to our new Blog for the Community Learning Center. A Blog is simply a "web log" or sort of an online journal. The purpose of this Blog is to keep all of you up to date on our latest expansion news

The Center has been operating at our existing location at 1611 North Fort Harrison for almost 10 years - 2007 is our 10th Anniversary. Practically since the day we opened we have been full of students, both young and old who have come to improve their literacy levels and frankly in most cases their lives.

However our existing building is just not big enough for everything we want to do to improve conditions in our community. And so we are working to secure our new facility at 1411 North Fort Harrison.

This over 7000 sq ft building was formerly the home of the Bill Irle Dinner Theatre and as such has a stage, kitchen and plenty of room. We can see lots of exciting things happening in this building. Additionally the building has parking for over 70 cars. Some of that parking space can be converted to green space, playground and basketball.

I wanted to put up some pictures of the new building. Just so you could see it.

Click here to go to my photos