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Eat, drink and help New Orleans market

By Times Staff Writer
Published March 7, 2008


BRANDON

Foodies can support the Crescent City Farmers Market in New Orleans with a benefit from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Rolling Pin Emporium.

The event includes wine and food prepared by eight chefs, including cookbook author Ray Lampe a.k.a. "Dr. BBQ" and chef Fabrizio of Pelagia Trattoria in Tampa.

Island seating is $175 per person and table seating is $150. Table seating includes a $50 Rolling Pin gift card.

In addition, the Rolling Pin is selling homemade pralines for the cause. They are $10 per bag and are available through March 11. Cash donations are also being accepted atthe store.

The Rolling Pin Emporium is a locally owned cooking store and school in the Brandon Crossroads shopping center at 2080 Badlands Drive.The fundraiser is part of a national effort by the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

It's time for annual trip to Florida Capitol

Get an up-close look at state government during the Greater Brandon Chamber of Commerce annual Tallahassee Trek on April 1.

The overnight pilgrimage is an opportunity for business owners and community members to travel as a group to the state Capitol and interact with state officials.

The itinerary includes tours of the Capitol building and grounds, one-on-one meetings with lawmakers and a dinner at the Governors Club. The cost is $300, which includes lodging and meals. Reservations must be madeby Monday.

Call Allison Braden at 689-1221 or visit www.brandonchamber.com for more information.

Examine your health at free fair Saturday

The Brandon Chamber of Commerce will have its annual health fair from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Campo Family YMCA, 3414 Culbreath Road, Valrico.

Several exhibits will feature health care products and services as well as educational materials.

Free health screenings and other services will be offered, including bone density analysis, hearing tests, child identification cards, vein consultation, mini facials and blood pressure testing.

Get exposure at expo, taste event in May

Restaurateurs and food aficionados are invited to the 20th annual Brandon Business Expo & Taste of Brandon, which runs from 3:30 to 8 p.m. May 15 at the special events center at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa. If you are a food vendor or business wanting to get greater exposure in the Brandon area, now is the time to sign up.

So far, the participants include All Events Catering, Brass Bell Catering, Buffalo Wild Wings, Cheddar's Casual Cafe, Chick-fil-A, Cracker Barrel, Embassy Suites, Giordano's Restaurant, Hungry Howie's Pizza and Subs, Jaymer-Que Southern BBQ, LeeAnn's Old Fashioned Cookies, Mimi's Cafe, Publix, Sam Seltzer's Steakhouse, Shells Fresh Seafood, Smoothie King, Sweet Tomatoes Restaurant, the Resort & Club at Little Harbor, the Tea Cup Tea Room, Wingz Gone Wild and WizeGuyz Pizzeria.

Chamber member booth fees are $200, or $300 for nonmembers. Product sales are allowed at the expo. For details, call 689-1221, ext. 43, or send an e-mail to jreid@brandonchamber.com You can also register online at www.brandonchamber.com.

PLANT CITY

Register for low-cost,free health screening

South Florida Baptist Hospital is offering several free or low-cost health screenings during its Spring Health Check days from 9 a.m. to noon Thursday through March 15.

Services include blood profiles ($20), bone density screenings (free), skin cancer screenings (free) and prostate screening ($20). Several other tests are offered. Not all services are available on all days, and registration is required. Call 754-4444 for more information.

RIVERVIEW

Dinner to raise funds for wildlife sanctuary

A dinner fundraiser to help Elmira's Wildlife Sanctuary with its moving expenses will be Wednesday at Mark's Deli & Cafe. Elmira's must vacate its property in Wimauma by March 15. Money from the event will go toward cage building, animal transportation and setup expenses for the new sanctuary.

Mark's Deli is at 11339 Big Bend Road. Tickets are $15 and are available at Mark's; in Sun City Center at Sunset Wine & Spirits or the 3 Legged Poodle; at the Canoe Outpost in Wimauma or online at www.elmiraswildlife.org.

BRANDON

Soccer balls to go to kids in iraq

The Brandon Area Youth Soccer League is collecting soccer balls for U.S. troops to hand out to children in Iraq.

The collection is part of a nationwide effort by a group called Kick for Nick. The group was founded to honor Army Pfc. Nick Madaras, who was killed in Iraq in 2006.

Madaras was known for handing out soccer balls to local children.

Donations of soccer balls can be made Saturday in front of the concession stand at JC Handly Field at 3104 S. Kings Ave. Cash donations are also being accepted.