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Monday, February 27, 2017 was an evening to remember! Guests who attended LRC and Red Door’s Wine Market Monday event last month, delighted in twelve samplings from South Africa African wines, a mouthwatering mounded antipasta platter, succulent boneless pork tenderloin chops and “To-Die-For” crème brulee’ while listening to interesting and practical wine information.

 
LRC was privileged to be selected as the Red Door Wine Market Monday cause for February, an initiative by Red Door owner Richard DeAngelis to support local charities. Fifteen loyal LRC folks enjoyed an evening of divine food and drink while LRC received $25 per ticket in return.
 
LRC would like to thank Red Door and all those who came out to support not only the organization, but the students of our local community!
 


 
Our annual fundraiser, For the Love…of Learning, took place Saturday evening at the stunning home of Rob and Tammy Springer on Canterwood Drive in Mulberry. One of our main festivities of the evening included a silent auction filled with an eclectic mix of great items available for bidding. For those who may not have attended or for those who did, take a look at the items that are still up for grabs. There are some great ones, if we do say so ourselves!
 
If you see something you’re interested in purchasing, please email us at general@lrcpolk.com or give us a call at 863-688-9477. Don’t delay, you have until Friday, February 24 to place your bid on these items!
 
Click below to view the available items.
 

Auction Items Up for Bid

 
 

In the month of January, Learning Resource Center students received 1,061 hours of tutoring, with a Year-To-Date Total of 6,340 hours (the YTD totals start over every July). New and ongoing students tutored during the month of January equaled 313 students.
 
January 2017 LRC Tutor Report
 
 
Thanks to all of our tutors and students for your time, efforts, and hard work. It’s paying off!
 
If you’re interested in participating in One-to-One Tutoring, please visit LRCPolk.com/programs/one-to-one-tutoring.
 
 
Related Posts:
October 2016 Tutoring Report
August/September 2016 Tutoring Report
August/September 2016 Tutoring Report
July 2016 Tutoring Report
June 2016 Tutoring Report
April 2016 Tutoring Report
March 2016 Tutoring Report
 

The 21st Annual Lakeland PigFest is just around the corner!
 

PIGFEST 2017

The festival will take place on Friday, January 27 from 5-10 p.m. and Saturday, January 28 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Due to the renovations taking place at TigerTown, it has been moved to the Sun ‘n Fun campus, offering competitors and attendees more space to browse the area and enjoy the festivities.
 
The new site will also allow for easier parking, which will remain at $5.00 per carload. Admission will be free, but prices for food will vary by vendor.
 
The competition will heat up with the Kingsford Professional BBQ, Publix Super Markets Backyard and Badcock Kids-Q competitions.
 
IMG_1411-710x375
Photo: LakelandPigFest.org

PIGFEST COMMUNITY

What attendees may not realize is that PigFest takes hundreds of volunteers and thousands of volunteer hours to help carry out the event, and local nonprofits, such as the Learning Resource Center, partner to provide the needed amount of volunteers. PigFest then gives every dollar raised back to the community!
 
By granting the Learning Resource Center opportunities and funds based on service hours, PigFest has helped provide academic assistance and highly-qualified tutors to help students succeed and has also enabled LRC to meet the needs of students, parents and the community by aiding in the expenses of daily operation. The effect this annual barbeque festival has had on LRC reaches every aspect of the organization. Those who received any service from LRC in 2016 were impacted by its support.
 

VOLUNTEER AT PIGFEST

With that being said, LRC is seeking 2017 individuals, pairs and groups to volunteer. Volunteers are needed for shifts taking place in the judging, team breakfast and golf cart shuttling areas. Shifts are available Thursday, January 26-Saturday, January 28. To view the available shifts and to register, please click VOLUNTEER AT PIGFEST.
 
 
We look forward to seeing you there! Whether you’re a competitor, attendee or volunteer, it’s sure be a fun weekend.
 
 
Information for PigFest Volunteers
PigFest17 Map
PigFest17 Parking pass
Golf Cart Driver Info

We, at the Learning Resource Center, want to thank this wonderful community. We are truly grateful for each penny, email, Facebook post, article, mention, phone call and invitation that brought us to the total donation of $5,940.00.
 
The Giving Match 2016 campaign began on November 29, 2016, also known as #GivingTuesday which is a national day designated for giving, and continued through Friday, December 2, 2016. Over those four days, the Polk County community came together, helping our organization earn more than $5,000. Libertore Fund for Children, a local organization with a mission to make a difference in the lives of at-risk children, matched each amount, dollar-for-dollar, up to $5,000 thanks to an anonymous donor.
 
On Tuesday, December 6, Lana Swartzwelder of the Libertore Fund for Children presented a check with the Fund’s match of $5,000.00 for an amazing total of $10,940.00.
 
The monies are now earmarked for a new server to replace our rebuilt, 10-year old equipment. Rarely is LRC able to use contract or grant funds for capital needs. It is only through an opportunity like this that we can update or replace the infrastructure that highly correlates with quality service, valuable programs, successful clients and fiscally-sound management.
 
Two years ago, the AdvancED/SACS Accreditation Team noted that technology (server included) was the one glaring need for improvement in an otherwise highly stellar evaluation report. If it were not for you and your generosity, this nonprofit would not be able to continue to make the differences in lives as it has done every day for 41 years. We truly appreciate YOU!
 
– Dr. Pamela Craven, LRC Executive Director
 
givingmatch-photo-edit
From left to right: Sherri Diaz, Marilyn Worthington, Dr. Pam Craven, Lana Swartzwelder (Libertore Fund for Children), Becky Troutman, Joyce Barclay, Lisa Burton, Morgan Holmes, Dr. Shandale Terrell, Tamme Goble, Elsa Nail and Annie Sullivan.
 

To ensure that you’re prepared for the ACT and/or SAT, we’ve compiled a list of the 2017 dates and deadlines all in one place to make it easier. Scroll down below to find the test date that works best for you.
 
test prep
 

ACT

[table]
Test Date,Registration Deadline,Late Fee Required
February 11,January 13,January 14-20
April 8,March 3,March 4-17
June 10,May 5,May 6-19
September 9,August 4,August 5-18
October 28,September 22,September 23-October 6
December 9,November 3,November 4-17
[/table]
Earn your best possible score on the ACT with LRC’s ACT Prep.
Information gathered from ACTstudent.org
 

SAT

Test dates may be subject to change
 
[table]
Test Date ,Registration Deadline, Late Mail Deadline, Late Phone/Online Deadline
January 21, December 21,January 3, January 10
March 11,February 10,February 21,February 28
May 6,April 7,April 18,April 25
June 3,May 9,May 16 ,May 24
August 26,July 28,August 8,August 21
October 7,September 8,September 19,September 27
November 4,October 5,October 17,October 25
December 2,November 2,November 14,November 21
[/table]
Prepare for the SAT with LRC’s SAT Preparation.
Find more information on the SAT, and register for the exam at SAT.collegeboard.org
 
 
Related Posts:
2016 ACT & SAT Dates

 
 

Are you looking for holiday events in Polk County? We’ve compiled a list of fun, family-friendly, events taking place this December just for you!
 
Check back frequently. We’ll be adding to the list as we find events.
 
freepik happy holidaysFreepik.com
 

Ongoing/Recurring Events

Festival of Wreaths
Date: Friday, November 18-Saturday, December 10
Location: Polk County History Center, Bartow
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Take in the sights and sounds of the season and enjoy the Sixth Annual Festival of Wreaths. The striking wreaths that fill the halls of the History Center are decorated and donated by local businesses, individuals and organizations. The wreaths will be on display through Dec. 10. On opening night, the History Center will be open from 6-8 p.m. as part of Main Street Bartow’s Magic on Main Street activities.
 
Snowy Wonderland
Date: Friday, November 25-Saturday, December 24
Location: Lakeside Village, Lakeland
Time: 5-9 p.m., Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays
Details: Catch real snowflakes whirling around the Lakeside Village Christmas tree for 5 minutes on the hour from 5pm-9pm.
 
Christmas Carillon Concerts
Date: Friday, November 25-Sunday, January 8
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 1-3 p.m. Thursday through Sunday
Details: Immerse yourself in the sounds of the season as Carillonneur Geert D’hollander performs Christmas music from around the world during 30-minute live concerts every Thursday through Sunday on the 60-bell Singing Tower carillon. Celebrate Christmas Day with Bok Tower Gardens as sounds of the carillon ring out during a live performance. Included with general Gardens admission
 
Winter Walking Tours
Date: Friday, November 25-Sunday, January 8
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 2:00 p.m. Sundays
Details: Volunteers lead visitors on an hour-long winter walking tour, sharing information about the flora and fauna and guiding visitors through the Gardens from the Visitor Center to the Singing Tower. Included with general Gardens admission.
 
Elves Shelves Gift Shop
Date: Saturday, November 26-Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk Museum of Art, Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; 1:00 p.m.-5:00 pm Sunday
Details: This special secret shop is for children only! Gifts will be reasonably priced for children to purchase holiday items for family and friends. Elves Shelves fun includes a wrapping station. Admission is free. Prices vary per item.
 
Gingerbread Houses with Mrs. Claus
Date: Sunday, November 27-Sunday, December 11
Location: Pinewood Estate at Bok Tower Gardens
Time: 2-4 p.m.
Details: Join Bok Tower at their first annual gingerbread house event to decorate your own gingerbread house and take a tour of the Pinewood house. Each participant will receive their own gingerbread house to decorate and storybook to take home, which will be read by Mrs. Claus herself. $40 per child includes Gardens and Holiday Home Tour admission, gingerbread house and storybook, and one chaperone.
 
1940s HoliDAYS
Date: Tuesdays: November 29, December 6, 13, 20, 27
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Be sure to see the vintage Model A’s outside Pinewood Estate, meet historical characters from the 1940s, and catch a few surprise personalities from the past. Tuesdays throughout December. Included with general Gardens admission.
 
Almost, Maine
Date: Thursday, December 1- Sunday, December 18
Location: Theatre Winter Haven
Time: 7:30 p.m. or 2:30 p.m. depending on date
Details: On a cold, clear, moonless night in the middle of winter, all is not quite what it seems in the remote, mythical town of Almost, Maine. As the northern lights hover in the star-filled sky above, Almost’s residents find themselves falling in and out of love in unexpected and often hilarious ways. Knees are bruised. Hearts are broken. But the bruises heal, and the hearts mend—almost—in this delightful midwinter night’s dream. Tickets are $21 for adults and $17 for students.
 
Lights of Lakeland
Date: Friday-Sunday: December 2-4; December 9-11
Location: Highland Park Church, Lakeland
Time: 6:30 p.m.- 9 p.m.
Details: This free walk-thru Christmas experience is one the whole family can enjoy! Experience an evening of excitement filled with your favorite holiday sights, smells, sounds and over 500,000 lights.
 
Florida Flywheelers Christmas in the Village
Date: Friday & Saturday: December 9-10; December 16-17
Location: 7000 Avon Park Cutoff Road, Fort Meade, FL 33841
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: The best kept Christmas secret around…the Florida Flywheelers bring a holiday village of sparkling lights, refreshments, & Santa & Mrs. Claus to their tractor site located between Avon Park and Fort Meade. Families can journey through the village on a tram pulled by a tractor while enjoying fun Christmas displays. There are also stops for free hotdogs, cookies, hot chocolate, eggnog and cider along the way. Admission is a monetary or toy donation.
 
Holiday Workshop
Date: Monday, December 19-Friday, December 23
Location: Explorations V Children’s Museum (109 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. & 1-5 p.m.
Details: Decorations and holiday fun for kids of all ages. From 9 a.m.-1 p.m. will be Mrs. Claus’ Kitchen featuring cookies, candy, and more. From 1-5 p.m. will be Santa’s Workshops featuring gifts for family & friends. The cost is $25 for a half day or $40 for a full day.
 
Winter Wonderland Workshops
Date: Monday, December 26-Friday, December 30
Location: Explorations V Children’s Museum (109 N Kentucky Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Details: Decorations and holiday fun for kids of all ages including frozen art, science and games. The cost is $25 for a half day or $40 for a full day.
 
Christmas Bricktacular
Date: Saturday, December 17-Sunday, December 18; Saturday, December 24-Friday, December 30
Location: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. (December 25-30)
Details: Bring in the holiday season with a 30-foot tall LEGO Christmas tree made of 270,000 LEGO bricks, life-size LEGO Santa, reindeer and sleigh, festive decorations, LEGO build activity, a LEGO Santa Scavenger Hunt, holiday entertainment and nightly fireworks. LEGO Santa and LEGO Toy Soldier make daily appearances in the Park providing a perfect family photo opportunity.
 
Week Before Christmas Movies at the Polk Theatre
Date: Sunday, December 18-Friday, December 23, 2016
Location: Polk Theatre (121 South Florida Ave., Lakeland)
Time: Times vary by date. See below.
Details: All movies are $5.00.
Dec. 18: It’s a Wonderful Life, 5:30-7:45 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 19: White Christmas, 6:30-8:30 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 20: Elf, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 21: Die Hard, 6:30-8:45 p.m. (R)
Dec. 22: A Christmas Story, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG)
Dec. 23: Christmas Vacation, 6:30-8 p.m. (PG-13)
 
Winter Ice Skating
Date: Tuesday, December 20-Sunday, January 1
Location: The Lakeland Center (George Jenkins Arena)
Time: Times vary by date.
Details: Public ice skating returns to The Lakeland Center this winter with morning, afternoon, evening, and late evening sessions on various days. Click the title link to see times and dates.
 

Library Events

Cult Movie Classics: Krampus
Date: Tuesday, December 6
Location: Lakeland Public Library (100 Lake Morton Drive, Lakeland)
Time: 7 p.m.
Details: Join the Lakeland Public Library for a free movie and snacks. December’s showing is Krampus. Most of our movies are intended for adults, however children and teens are allowed if accompanied by an adult.
 
Holidazed Craft Night
Date: Thursday, December 8
Location: Lakeland Public Library
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Details: Join the Lakeland Public Library to decorate festive coffee mugs. All supplies are provided for this free event but registration is required.
 
Santa’s Workshop
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Lakeland Public Library
Time: 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Stop by the library for Christmas-themed fun.
 
Holiday Concert with Sandy’s Music Girls & Friends
Date: Tuesday, December 20
Location: Lake Wales Public Library (290 Cypress Garden Lane)
Time: 2-3 p.m.
Details: Enjoy beautiful holiday music performed by talented young musicians.
 
Holiday Movies in the Library
Date: Thursday, December 22
Location: Lake Wales Public Library (290 Cypress Garden Lane)
Time: 11 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: Enjoy festive movies at the Lake Wales Public Library.
 

Community Events

Lights in the Park
Date: Thursday, December 1
Location: Downtown Auburndale
Time: 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join the City of Auburndale for entertainment, refreshments and tree-lighting with a surprise visit from Santa Claus. The Historic Baynard House will be open for holiday tours.
 
First Friday – Holiday Hometown
Date: Friday, December 2
Location: Downtown Lakeland
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Free holiday-themed family-friendly entertainment, activities, live music, art reception, car show, and more.
 
An Enchanted Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Gardner Park, Lake Alfred
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Details: Join Lake Alfred at their Christmas parade and tree lighting. The parade route remains the same from last year. The parade will start at Central Park at the corner of Cummings and Glencruiten and will head west on Cummings to 17/92 and end at Gardner Park. Hot chocolate and cookies will be provided at Gardner Park for the Christmas tree lighting.
 
Breakfast with Santa – Auburndale
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Auburndale Civic Center
Time: 9-11 a.m.
Details: Auburndale Parks and Recreation presents the annual breakfast with Santa event. Admission is $8. Tickets are available at the Auburndale Parks and Recreation department.
 
Carols in the Park
Date: Saturday, December 3-Sunday, December 4
Location: Central Park, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Details: This is the 28th Annual Carols in the Park Holiday Market. The event includes handmade craft vendors, Polk County Schools participating by performing holiday programs, free photos with Santa, free kids crafts and carriage rides!
 
Glitter, Glisten & Snow
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 5-9 p.m.
Details: Join the City of Haines City for a fun-filled event for all ages featuring thousands of lights, snow slides, children’s entertainment, arts & crafts vendors, food vendors and a chance to meet Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Admission is free.
 
Jingle Bark Pet Festival
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Regional Park (50901 U.S. 27, Davenport)
Time: 12-4 p.m.
Details: This free event is for leashed pets and their owners. It will feature pet supplies, food vendors, pet photos with Santa, pet contests and mobile grooming.
 
SnowFest
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Downtown Lakeland
Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Join Lakeland Parks & Recreation for its Annual Snowfest featuring the traditional Snow Mountain, arts and crafts vendors, a rock climbing wall, live entertainment and more.
 
Christmas Open House
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Florida Baptist Children’s Home (1015 Sikes Blvd., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join FBCH for a Christmas open house for holiday treats, cottage tours and fun-filled family entertainment.
 
Holiday Party
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Wilfred Smith Resource Center (135 Avenue Y N.E., Winter Haven)
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation holiday event is for the whole family and will feature sweet treats, arts and crafts, a coloring contest and a family movie, which will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Jingle Bell Rock Party
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Wabash Community Center (1230 Southern Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation holiday event is for the whole family and will feature sweet treats, arts & crafts, games, a coloring contest and a family movie. The movie will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Season’s Screenings- Home Alone
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase. The movie will be Home Alone.
 
Breakfast with Santa – Haines City
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Beef O Brady’s (902 Old Polk City Road, Haines City)
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Join Haines City Parks and Recreation where Santa and Mrs. Claus will great the children and pose for pictures. Admission is included with the purchase of a meal. Bring your cameras.
 
Breakfast with Santa at the Y
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: YMCA of West Central Florida (2125 Sleepy Hill Road, Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Details: Join the YMCA in partnership with Discover Family Church for this annual free holiday featuring free breakfast, crafts, fun, games and Santa.
 
Christmas Notes
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Homeland Heritage Park (249 Church Avenue, Homeland)
Time: 5 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Join Polk County Parks and Recreation for live music, photos with Santa, refreshments, a holiday kid zone, outdoor movie, and more. Admission is free.
 
Holiday Craft Fair & Toy Drive
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Lakeland Knights of Columbus, 2014 Lakeland Hills Blvd.
Time: 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Details: This event will feature close to 50 crafters and vendors, a bounce house, raffles and food vendors. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to local autism and epilepsy charities. There will also be a box available for unwrapped toy donations.
 
Winterfest
Date: Saturday, December 12
Location: Wilson Park in Downtown Davenport
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Winterfest festivities will include a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, an electric night parade, cookie-decorating, vendors and snow. The parade will begin at 6 p.m. Other activities will begin at 7 p.m.
 
Holiday Tree Lighting Party
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Eloise Resource Center (710 Snively Avenue, Eloise)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: This free Polk County Parks and Recreation family event will feature sweet treats, arts and crafts, a coloring contest, and a family movie.
 
Jolly Holidays
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Bartow Civic Center (2250 S. Florida Ave., Bartow)
Time: 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Bartow Parks & Recreation presents the 7th Annual Jolly Holidays with activities that will include one free picture with Santa and Mrs. Claus (additional pictures can be purchased for $5), decorating cookies and ornaments, coloring, music and activities, family gingerbread house making, and a chance to win a 6 foot stocking filled with toys (must be present to win)!
 
Mingle and Jingle
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Simple Vintage with Scout and Tag
Time: 6-8 p.m.
Details: Come out for a night of door prizes, shopping, crafts, gifts, cookie decorating, music, drinks and more! Spend time at Simple Vintage & Scout and Tag’s Christmas “gift tag” making station. Kids can enjoy decorating free sugar cookies. The first 25 people will receive a free swan ornament. There will be more giveaways for purchase as well as acoustical music performed by Tanner Ledford and Diego Salinas.
 
Season’s Screenings-Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park, featuring Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase.
 
Snow Central
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Chain of Lakes Stadium, Winter Haven
Time: 5 p.m.-9 p.m.
Details: Bring the family to frolic in Winter Haven’s own winter wonderland featuring 70 tons of snow making up the snow slide and snow pile for children and adults to enjoy. There will also be games, food and appearances by Santa. The cost is $2 for adults and $1 for kids.
 
Santa’s Run for Our Kids
Date: Saturday, December 17
Location: Central Park, Winter Haven (near the Chamber)
Time: 7:30 a.m.
Details: Sponsored by the Winter Haven Optimist Club, this 5K run/walk, 10k run, 1/2 mi. kids’ run will begin at Central Park and progress around Lake Howard, Lake Cannon and Lake Mirror. The 10K will begin at 7:30 a.m. The 5K run/walk will begin at 8 a.m., and the kids’ run will begin at 9 a.m.
 
DCTE Merry Magical Holiday Ball 2016
Date: Sunday, December 18
Location: Lake Ariana Clubhouse, 321 Ramsgate Road, Auburndale
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Details: Spend an enchanted night with all of your favorite characters making magical memories at the character meet and greet, royal portrait keepsakes, delicacies, interactive holiday story time, crafts, giveaways, carols, Santa, and singing and dancing. The cost is $25-$35.
 
Holly Jolly Jingle Bell Jog
Date: Saturday, December 19
Location: Cleveland Heights Golf Course
Time: 6:30 a.m.
Details: Get your holidays off to a running start with the City of Lakeland’s 5K and grand opening of Three Parks Trail. The entry is $30 for the chip-timed race and will include a t-shirt if registered by Dec. 1. Enjoy post-race refreshments and photo opportunities with Santa.
 
Christmas Around the World
Date: Tuesday, December 20
Location: WonderHere (111 South Florida Avenue,Lakeland)
Time: 5-8 p.m.
Details: Join WonderHere for this free holiday event. Drop in anytime between 5-8 p.m.
 
Season’s Screenings-The Polar Express
Date: Thursday, December 22
Location: Lake Eva Park, Haines City
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: Bring your chairs and blankets for Haines City’s Christmas-themed movie series in the park, featuring The Polar Express. Popcorn and drinks will be available for purchase.
 

Theatre & Performing Arts Events

A Christmas Gala Concert of Holiday Favorites
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Details: This Polk State College winter concert is features all of your holiday favorites. The cost is free for Polk State College students, Polk County high school students, Polk State faculty and staff.
 
Christmas at the Ramon
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Ramon Theater, Frostproof
Time: 2 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
Details: This celebration of the Christmas Season featuring choirs and individual performers, coming together for a family-friendly gathering, with songs and community caroling. Donations of non-perishable items will be collected to benefit the Frostproof Care Center.
 
The Ultimate Nightmare Before Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Polk Theatre(121 S Florida Ave, Lakeland)
Time: 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
Details: A stark departure from traditional holiday dance performances, the Ultimate Dance Center presents this homage to Tim Burton’s stop-motion animation film through jazz, hip hop, ballet and contemporary dance.
 
The Glory of Christmas
Date: Monday, December 5
Location: First Presbyterian Church, Lakeland
Time: 6-7 p.m..
Details: The Sanctuary swells with the magnificent music of the Christmas season when the FPC choirs join together with guest artists to present the annual Glory of Christmas.
 
A Royal Christmas
Date: Thursday, December 8
Location: Polk State Lake Wales Arts Center
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Details: Polk State College presents Warner University’s “A Royal Christmas”. There is no cost of admission to this performance.
 
Elf Jr. The Musical
Date: Friday, December 9-Sunday, December 11
Location: Lakeland Community Theatre (121 S. Lake Ave., Lakeland)
Time: See times below.
Details: Based on the beloved holiday film, this hilarious fish-out-of-water comedy follows Buddy the Elf in his quest to find his true identity. Rated G. The cost is $15 for adults and $12 for children 12 and under.
Show times: Friday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.
 
A Gift for the Holidays: The Christmas Gala
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Florida Southern College’s Branscomb Auditorium
Time: 2:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.
Details: As the holidays approach, music faculty, staff, and students eagerly shift their attention to the preparation of FSC’s gift to the community, the Christmas Gala featuring beloved traditions as Adolphe Adam’s O Holy Night and the stirring audience-interactive Christmas Carol Sing-Along, this year’s production, A Gift for the Holidays, will reveal gifts of beautiful sacred and secular seasonal repertoire performed by a dazzling array of music ensembles, soloists, and surprise guests. The cost is $4-8.
 
Symphony Guild: ISO Christmas Concert
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 3-4 p.m.
Details: The Symphony Guild of Winter Haven welcomes the Imperial Symphony Orchestra for a celebration of the season at Polk State College Fine Arts Theatre in Winter Haven. Tickets are available by calling (863) 294-7213 or (863) 206-7167.
 
The Crystal Nutcracker
Date: Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 3 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
Details: Clarice and her Nutcracker Prince embark upon an exciting and courageous adventure as they battle the mouse queen, travel through the snow forest, on their way to the Crystal Palace. Performed in Ballet, Tap, Modern, Swing, Jazz, African, and, Hip Hop by Crystal’s World of Dance, this dance spectacular is not the typical holiday nutcracker. The cost is $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and kids 12 and under.
 
Over 55 Show Band Concert: “’Tis the Season”
Date: Sunday, December 11
Location: Polk State Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre
Time: 2 p.m.-4 p.m.
Details: The Over 55 Show Band will perform at the Winter Haven Fine Arts Theatre. The cost for the concert is $10.
 
Masterworks #2: A Victorian Holiday
Date: Tuesday, December 13
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.
Details: A perennial favorite, this season the ISO presents the sounds of the season including the classic Victorian-era tale “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” with vocalists from Harrison School for the Arts. Tickets range from $15-$35.
 
The Magic of Christmas
Date: Saturday, December 17
Location: Polk Theatre, Lakeland
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Details: Justino and Daniela Zoppe bring a little magic in their all new stage show for all ages featuring Cirque Acrobatics, comedy, dangerous stunts, mind-blowing illusions that’ll leave you with an inspiring lesson about family, love and the magic of Christmas. The cost is $18 for adults, and $12 for children 12 and under.
 
Florida Dance Theatre Presents: TCHAIKOVSKY’S The Nutcracker
Date: Saturday, December 17; Sunday, December 18
Location: Florida Southern College’s Branscomb Auditorium
Time: 7:30-9 p.m.(Saturday); 2:30-4 p.m. (Sunday)
Details: Lakeland’s own professional dance company, the Florida Dance Theatre, brings its celebrated annual production of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker to the stage of Branscomb Auditorium. Performed with charm and perfection by the dynamic dancers of FSC’s company-in-residence, this breathtaking production features colorful scenery, dazzling costumes, and entrancing choreography. As a special treat, community children join the professional dancers, creating a family-friendly, feel-good performance event. The cost ranges from $9-$18.
 
Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker
Date: Tuesday, December 27
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 7 p.m.
Details: The ultimate holiday tradition for the youngest to the seniors in every family, seeing Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker creates holiday memories that last a lifetime. The renowned, award-winning principal dancers and corps de ballet thrill audiences with their expertise, dramatic expression and stunning leaps, drops and turns. The cost is $28 and up.
 
New Year’s Eve at the Ramon
Date: Saturday, December 31
Location: Ramon Theater, Frostproof
Time: 6-10 p.m.
Details: Celebrate New Year’s Eve at the Ramon Theater to enjoy intrigue, deception and delicious food. Prepare your sleuthing skills for the clues given by the Ramon Players.
 

Attraction Events

Kenny G: The Miracles and Holiday Hits Tour 2016
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 8 p.m.
Details: Join The Lakeland Center for an evening of holiday hits from Grammy® Award-winning saxophonist Kenny G. The cost is $29.50-$69.50.
 
Santa’s Workshop with Family Fundamentals
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Family Fundamentals, Lakeland (1021 Lakeland Hills Blvd.)
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: Enjoy a traditional Christmas experience with Santa and Mrs. Claus. The event will include photos with Santa and hands-on holiday activities for ages 2-6. Santa himself will be handing out children’s books to all of the boys and girls.
 
Sunset & Symphony Holiday Concert
Date: Saturday, December 3
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: Enjoy the sounds of the season with the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra and the Singing Tower carillon as they perform together during one of Central Florida’s favorite outdoor concerts. Families and friends are encouraged to prepare themed picnics and experience a magical evening as the sun sets atop Iron Mountain. $20 adults / $8 children (5-12) / $18 members in advance. Event day costs: $25 adults, $10 children, $25 members.
 
Christmas with the Nelsons: A Tribute to Ricky Nelson
Date: Sunday, December 4
Location: The Lakeland Center
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: CHRISTMAS WITH THE NELSONS tells the story of three family Christmases in the lives of America’s Favorite Family, The Nelsons. This heartwarming multimedia, live concert experience stars the third generation of #1 Nelson Family hit-makers and features a genuine blend of Everly Brothers-style harmonies and Smothers Brothers-style comedy. Center Stage Buffet is available for this performance. The cost is $30-$45.
 
Fingerprint Snowman Plate
Date: Friday, December 9
Location: PicassoZ Art Café (4632 Cleveland Heights Blvd., Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.-8 p.m.
Details: You can walk in anytime with your family or just to work on this by yourself, and Melanie can complete the artwork if you prefer. This is more of a casual workshop, not a class. She has 6 spots available, prepay & reserve today. $25 for dinner plate, upgrade to a platter optional. If you choose to upgrade, the $25 registration will apply toward the platter.
 
Bartow Ford Winter Wonderland
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Bartow Ford
Time: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Details: Bartow Ford and 97 Country have teamed together to create a free Winter Wonderland event featuring 64 tons of real snow, snow slides, characters, two Polar Express trains, face painting, photo opportunities and more.
 
Holiday Home Workshop
Date: Saturday, December 10
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m. or 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Details: Spend the morning or afternoon with Project Blooming founder, Linda Worle creating a beautiful succulent wreath. It’s easy to mix succulents in an array of types and colors that will last year-round. Workshop includes instruction, basic framework materials, and plants. $70, all materials included.
 
Christmas Coloring
Date: Friday, December 16
Location: Art Centric Studio (1035 South Florida Avenue, Suite #180, Lakeland)
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Details: This free event for all ages is a great way to relax! Vintage Christmas cards, Christmas trees, and ugly Christmas sweaters are just a few of the coloring sheets that will be provided. You are welcome and encouraged to bring your own coloring books and colored pencils, but if you lack the supplies, they’ve got you covered.
 
Holiday Pop-Up Shop
Date: Friday, December 17
Location: Concord Coffee & A Kind Place (1035 South Florida Ave., Lakeland)
Time: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
Details: Concord Coffee and A Kind Place present the Holiday Pop-up Shop. Come out to the Dixieland Mall for photos with Santa, kid’s activities, a gift wrapping station, hot chocolate, music, and more.
 
Carillon & Chorale Concert plus Holiday Home Tour Open Late
Date: Sunday, December 18
Location: Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Details: Enjoy an hour-long carillon concert with a live choir under the evening stars. Before or after the concert, visit Pinewood Estate for a special nighttime tour complete with hot chocolate and cookies. It’s a unique opportunity to visit the Gardens after normal operating hours. Enjoy a light dinner at the Blue Palmetto Café before the concert for an additional fee. Last entry to Pinewood Estate is at 9:30 p.m. Concert Only: $10 adult, $5 for child (5-12), free for members. Concert & Home Tour: $18 adult, $11 for child (5-12), $7 for members.
 
Publix Aprons Holiday Cookies
Date: Wednesday, December 21
Location: Publix Aprons Cooking School, (4730 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland)
Time: 6 p.m.
Details: ‘Tis the season for baking holiday cookies. Join Publix Aprons as they teach you how to make new recipes that you and your family will fall in love with. Menu: Chai Tea Eggnog Cookies; Maple Walnut Spiced Cookies; Peppermint Pin Wheel Cookies, Chocolate Chip Blondies; Coconut Cranberry Chews. The cost is $40. To reserve a seat for this class, call the Lakeland Cooking School at (863) 647-4127.

 
Kids’ New Year’s Eve
Date: Saturday, December 31
Location: LEGOLAND Florida, Winter Haven
Time: 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Details: Celebrate New Year’s Eve at LEGOLAND Florida where the giant LEGO brick drops at a very kid-friendly midnight KST (Kid Standard Time) – otherwise known as 7 p.m. EST. Other event elements include fireworks and a dance party DJ.
 

Misc. Events

Lights of Love
Date: Tuesday, December 6
Location: Lakeland Hospice House (3450 Lakeland Hills Boulevard, Lakeland)
Time: 6-7 p.m.
Details: Lights of Love is a commemorative tree-lighting ceremony that benefits Good Shepherd Hospice. This annual gathering is an opportunity for Good Shepherd Hospice families and community members to gather to celebrate and remember their loved ones in a special, unique way. Candles are lit by all attendees, musical entertainment is provided by community members, holiday songs are shared and words of comfort are delivered by Good Shepherd Hospice staff and area spiritual leaders.
 
Emerge Elves & Santas For Seniors
Date: Wednesday, December 7
Location: VISTE (1232 E Magnolia St)
Time: 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Details: EMERGE Lakeland is partnering with Volunteers in Service to the Elderly (VISTE) to provide Holiday Care Packages to 50 limited income, homebound seniors in the community. Join other “EMERGE elves” for a 20-minute facility tour and packaging of 50 personal cares boxes. Approximately 20 – 25 volunteers are needed.
 
Rudolph Round-Up Holiday Toy Drive
Date: December
Location: Heartland for Children, Lakeland
Time: N/A
Details: Heartland for Children’s 12th Annual Rudolph Round-Up Holiday Toy Drive helps to make incredible holiday memories for 1,400 local children who have experienced abuse and/or neglect. Become a Rudolph champion by sponsoring a child, sponsoring a toy drive, making a monetary contribution, donating a toy and/or spreading the word.
 
 
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Support, shop, and save…what could be better?

 
charity-sale

Support

 
By purchasing a $5 Belk Charity Sale ticket from the Learning Resource Center, you’ll be helping students of the community receive the academic assistance they need to succeed, and supporting LRC’s mission of helping students maximize their learning potential by providing personalized educational programs, consultative services for parents and programs to accommodate community needs. All proceeds from LRC’s tickets will go directly to LRC. Tickets are available for purchase now through the event. Please stop by the Learning Resource Center at 1628 South Florida Avenue in Lakeland to pick up yours.
 

Shop

 
Bring your $5 ticket that you purchased from LRC, to Belk on Saturday, November 5, 2016 between 6-10 a.m. to receive $5 off your first purchase. If you won’t be able to make it to shop the private sale between the morning hours on the fifth, you can reserve your items during a pre-sale that will take place Tuesday, October 25-Friday, November 4, 2016.
 

Save

 
Another benefit of shopping this private sale is that rarely-discounted brands will be marked down. Customers will receive 15%-70% off their purchases storewide. The first 100 customers to attend the Charity Sale event at their local Belk store will receive a gift card with a mystery amount of $5-$1,000. Also, Belk Rewards Card customers will earn five times the points or 10 times the points on cosmetics and fragrance purchases during the event using their card.
 
So, what are you waiting for? What could be better than supporting the local community by shopping, and saving while you shop? Pick up your $5 Belk Charity Sale ticket from LRC today!
 

LRC Hours & Location

Monday-Thursday: 7:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Friday: 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
1628 S. Florida Ave. Lakeland, FL 33803, 863-688-9477
 
Tickets are available at our office now through Friday, November 4, 2016.
 
 

Darcy Deeds donates birthday gifts to LRC

The Learning Resource Center wants to give Darcy Deeds an enormous “THANK YOU” for her sincere generosity. Mrs. Deeds’ husband threw her a birthday party on August 13, 2016. In lieu of presents, she requested that donations be made to the Learning Resource Center. Mrs. Deeds delivered her gift of $270 to LRC this past week.
 
gifts freepik LRC Polk
A few years ago, Mrs. Deeds participated in a Junior League tour of LRC and immediately asked how she could help. Unable to serve on the Board of Trustees at that time, she helped with Facebook and website updates. She and her husband also support LRC’s annual scholarship fundraiser held every February, For the Love…of Learning.
 
Thanks so much to the Deeds as well as their family and friends! Students will be able to further their success due to their thoughtful contribution.
 
 
If you’re interested in helping, please visit Get Involved to find ways you could support LRC and the students of our community.
 
 

By Christine Sikorski, 2016 Bartow Camp READY! Teacher


Camp Ready Bartow LRC Polk
We first saw ridiculously adorable and compact, little Maddox with messy sandy blonde hair, camouflage t-shirt, jean shorts and cowboy boots clinging to his dad’s leg with a sheepish grin spreading across his muddy face that first day of Camp READY! on June 20, 2016. His family lived a half-hour away. Maddox had never been to preschool before. Dad brought Maddox faithfully every day so that Maddox could get ready for kindergarten and have an awesome first year in school.
 
The teachers and counselors at Bartow’s Camp READY! agreed that Maddox was a bit reluctant to participate at first. In fact, he confidently declared on the first day of camp, “I am not going to sing in the show, and my dad is not coming!” We assured him that he would have a great time singing for the parents and we would make sure his dad would come! Having never been to preschool, he had trouble writing his name, which looked more like he wrote it with an alien alphabet. He could name a few shapes, but could not name any colors. He did not know any numbers between 0-21 and could only identify the letter “W”, which was the first letter of his last name. He also had not spent much time socializing outside of his family and church, so camp was a nice, gentle exposure into getting along with all types of friends at school.
camp ready bartow lrc polk
In 20 days, we immersed Maddox in letter sounds, shapes, colors and numbers through play and fun movement activities, readiness, art and cooking centers. He was bombarded with literacy as he listened to dozens of high-quality books in all three classes throughout his morning. He was exposed to all sorts of new vocabulary in positional words with movement activities. While in cooking, he learned science, measuring and dividing food to share. He practiced his letters and their sounds through daily singing of the alphabet song, “Learning Letter Sounds”. Maddox did like to sing, after all. In fact, he was the star of the show, belting out the alphabet song.
 
After the show, we overheard Maddox talking to his buddy Kyle.
 

“I think I’m ready for school now. I can spell my dad’s name!”
 
“Oh yeah? How do you spell it?,” checked Kyle.
 
Maddox proudly spelled his dad’s name, “D-A-D!”
 
“That’s how you spell my dad’s name too!”

 
Kids say the funniest things.
 
 

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