Toys/Kids/YOU !

…… So I was getting a little nervous wasn’t I, the Central City Alliance’s Christmas shindig for the best kids in our area was getting close , (it’s this Sunday from 2pm until 5 pm in the Middle River Terrace Park )…. and you were supposed to take a toy to the Christmas Palace on 13th Street, and only 6 toys had been collected !  ….yikes!  .



….. You’ll also remember that we decided that again this year, we would let our three local elementary schools pick 75 kids that were gettings A’s in class, despite growing up in abject poverty…. And we would give them one hell of a Christmas party for their tremendous efforts . …  !


toyspoorkid  toyspoor


….So I drove over to the Christmas Palace this morning, hoping that you had come through for the kids, that we would have enough toys stacked on stacks !   …….




…….  David from the Christmas Palace and this little elf started putting box after box in the van for the trip to the park…




…. Just then I got a call from Caldwell Cooper, who said to get over to his office and collect the dozens of toys his wife had picked up for the kids !


….. I started feeling better   …. We got to the historic Annie Beck House (where we are storing the toys until Sunday) and started counting to see if you had brought in enough goodies to do the job…




….Santa’s little helper started stacking up the toys and giving them a count   …. And a broad smile broke out on the elf’s face!

…… We need a few more, but things are looking up!  …If you still have a toy, just bring it to the park on Sunday ( at 2 pm if possible)  …. Santa will be arriving about then (in a Model T Ford) ……   and then it’s party’s on !









Citywide Mailer – But By Whom ?


…… The mailer arrived today ….  Came in the regular mail to the Smith Family ( or Current Resident)  …..

It demands …….



mailerpay atteniton  ………  ok, paying attention   ….


It tells us it’s

……………   NOT TOO LATE !  

The return address is

……………  Make My Voice Heard –  PO Box   …#350641 …




….When you turn the mailer over, it tells you that  WE MUST ACT NOW   …BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE    ….

……Wow, got my attention again ! ….. So I read on  ….It tells of  “drastic changes” to our beaches  ….. they say it will “change the character of our community forever”   …..   It continues on about the coming development proposals for the Bahia Mar Hotel , the mega-project at the Galleria, the beach Fire station swap ……

…. Nobody seems to know who is behind the mailer (or maybe they’re just not telling me!)   ….But it is evident that it is prepared by beach residents that feel the big projects coming to the beach will very bad for the city, very bad for the beach   …


mailerbigbuildings (Not really beach projects, just file photo of big buildings 🙂


…… . Then they ask you to sign up to the discussion by sending an e-mail to    

……………. I love when citizens speak up, even if you don’t know who they are !

………….  hmmmmmmm ….what do you think?


Do Good This Christmas !

……. This is another attempt to try and get you to buy a toy for a kid,( for their Christmas cheer), who are getting A’s in our local elementary schools, despite growing up in poverty ! We are holding those kids a party, and that takes presents !



…… We started getting the venue for the gift giving party ready yesterday …..  The shindig  for the kids will be in the Middle River Terrace Park, at the historic, 100 year-old Annie Beck House ……..on Sunday, December 20, from 2 until 5…



…. Rob was busy yesterday boarding up the lattice work that had been kicked out of the skirt of the historic house, by homeless camping underneath,( gotta make the house presentable for the party) !

….. Now your job is to buy a toy, leave it unwrapped and deliver it to the Christmas Store this week, this week !  …. would you, would you please !!



… Look at it this way, buying the toy and delivering it to the Christmas Store this week is far easier than Cindy’s job at the historic house yesterday……..

……   The house will be decorated sweetly for the festivities, the kids (and you) will be fed generously, there will be live Christmas music, and the Mayor, and some Commissioners will be there singing the Christmas  carols ( oh boy!)   …


….After you deliver that toy, this week ( for a boy or girl, doesn’t matter), send me an e-mail to, so I’ll know that we’ll have enough toys   ….We are honoring 75 kids, and to date, have ….  6 toys – Yikes !

…..   If you need to find me, try looking for me at the historic house ! (see above) …

……….     Tim




Christmas Toys/Grade A Kids/Need Help !

…. As we have done in the past, the Central City Alliance (formerly known as the 13th Street Alliance), is giving great gifts to elementary school kids in the area that are getting A’s, despite living in real poverty – dirt poor !



…These kids deserve recognition!  … It’s hard enough to do great in school, but when you live in abject poverty  ….well. you get it!

………..  So, please take an unwrapped gift for an elementary-aged boy or girl to the Christmas Store on 13th Street before December 20th  ….. Then join the community at Middle River Terrace Park on December 20th – 2 pm until 5 pm, where we will give out the toys, sing Christmas carols with a live band, Eat…eat…eat…. and be merry, ….. all while doing a great thing  !!!

……..For more info, call me at 954-822-4727




Prominent Businessmans’ Kid Robbed and Shot

… A parents’ worse nightmare  ….. the phonecall, your kid has been shot in an armed robbery !!




…… The parents are Caldwell and Susan Cooper, and they are the owner/ operators of



 ….. Cooper Properties, the largest rental property company ( and biggest residential tax payer) in Fort Lauderdale …  


… They got the call last night about 8pm – “Dad, I just got robbed and they shot me” , a sentence that make the biggest brute weak at the knees….. “But I’m OK”, 15 year old- tenth grader Joseph Cooper added…..

….. Joseph, on Thanksgiving break from Cardinal Gibbons, was hanging out in Rio Vista with his buddies Nick and Michael  …. They were walking the dog down to the Ponce De Leon park when a “old Chevy Trailblazer” pulled up next to them  …. “They had on hoodies and bandanas with a red skull cap, and at first we thought they were some friends just screwing around”, said Joseph …. They said “give us your stuff, and just seconds later he shot me!” ….




….Having been trained with guns from a younger age, Joseph knew the gun was a pellet gun the driver had shot him with, but he saw a long gun in the lap of the passenger  …”I was gushing blood” , Joseph said …. They took off and the three friends ran for home  ….. They called home  …”Mom was flippin out”, Joseph said  ….

….   The parents were there in minutes and rushed Joseph to Broward General to take out the pellets and stitch up the wound …..  Joseph, a typical 15 year old, took a “snapchat” of the wound and sent it to friends  ….  “It hurt more this morning than yesterday”, he quipped ….

… The robbers, one white, one black, were from Plantation, ( a 17 year old and an 18 year old) and had attempted other robberies in Rio Vista that night and were caught later that night by FLPD ….



…. Joseph says the robbers are being charged with armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon, the 18 year old as an adult   ….  “the world is flat out crazy”, Joseph finished …..

………………   no kidding, I thought !



Problems Solved !

… On our last post, we pointed out 2 problems that needed immediate attention in our City, and I’m happy to report that within a week, both problems were solved !

…..  It took a village, so to speak, but that’s a good thing  …

….. The biggest group effort was the pile of garbage that made up a homeless encampment near that really cool “little red caboose” on Sunrise Boulevard behind Home Depot. The problem had been brewing for nearly 6 months, and made the city look like a dump!


…. The City was worried about the new homeless rulings, the Cemex plant thought it was a Police responsibility, the neighborhood just complained  .

…but then   … ACTION !

…..  cemexcoop1

…A tough group of volunteers ( including Cooper Properties pictured above) showed up at 9 this morning to dismantle the encampment   …. A really great Policeman, Sgt. Jamie Costas, had visited the camp the night before and told the inhabitants (including murderer “Jack” – who served 20 years for murdering his wife). that the camp would be going away in the morning …. ( Costas says “Jack” was understanding, and his personal things were gone this morning along with Jack).


… Commissioner Dean Trantalis (pictured above leaning on rake), and City Manager Feldman worked quickly to arrange for Republic Industries to volunteer pick-up of the refuse …


…Let’s just say that Republic has their work cut out for them…

…..   Thank you to the dozen volunteers that made it happen, because in the end –


…..   no garbage, and nowhere left to hide !

……… ( oh yea, the defaced People pictures on the County building has also been removed)  …





2 things 2 fix !!!

# 1



……    I love these  People Pictures ….. don’t you ?     …..  we’e seen them at Fort  Lauderdale High School, etc.,   but here’s my question  ….. what kind of animal did  this to these pics  ? …  this 40 person stretch of pics of  our fellow citizens on the County building downtown has been destroyed …. Shouldn’t  we just knee- cap the fool that did this ?

…  I hope the pics can be replaced  ….let’s not just give in!




…. This is the trashed out lot next to that really cool little red caboose on Sunrise Boulevard  by Home Depot.




…. Some like to blame the Caboose, but there is no garbage at the train, only next to it in front of the Cemex Cement plant  ……

…. Why can’t we stop this prolific homeless person from living next to the  caboose with all his tons of trash ???

…….  2 things 2 fix  ….






The People Win !!!

…… It’s nice to see the little guy win once in a while ! ……  Story follows !

…… For years, the South Middle River Neighborhood (north of Sunrise Boulevard, west of Andrews)  has been amazingly burdened by a juvenile delinquent boys’ home.  



    ….The facility,  funded by the State of Florida, is so poorly run, that when a burglary occurs in the neighborhood, the Police just automatically go to the facility –  the Crescent House.




…….. The House (actually a collection of apartments) has produced so much crime over the last 6 years, that the City took the unusual step of asking a Judge last month to declare the facility a nuisance, so they can shut it down. The move is important, and possibly even precedent setting. At the hearing, about 50 neighbors showed up in red shirts and pleaded with the Judge to shut it down. They testified about finding burglars in their homes, drug paraphernalia in the swale, brawls in the intersections.

…. On the other side of the aisle were high priced attorneys for the State and the facility, decrying the move, saying it should be kept open for the “children”.

….One such “child”, Cedric Camper, now 19, had racked up 53 felony charges while living at the “house”, no kidding ! He was finally shipped up state, but other young criminals filled the void.

…. Now the good news !  …. Word has it that on Monday,  the Judge will indeed declare the facility a nuisance and against the area zoning, which should be enough to close the facility. Appeals are expected, but this is a big win for South Middle River, and the city of Fort Lauderdale.

…..  The neighborhood deserves major recognition for staying after it all these years, not giving up,  and their leader in the fight, Sal Gatanio, should just be declared a saint !












Cindi Hutchinson Leaves Town

….. Former Fort Lauderdale City Commissioner Cindi Hutchinson fell about as far from grace as is possible, now she has left town.




……   Hutchinson served on the Commission as the District IV Commissioner from 2000 until 2009, when she started a run for Mayor, but bowed out after encountering a charge of public corruption for accepting home improvement gifts worth $14,000 from a developer.

Hutchinson was convicted and served 2 months and 20 days in jail…



…..  Hutchinson never returned to public life after serving her sentence. She is on probation until 2018.

Now she has left Fort Lauderdale for Hollywood.



…… Hutchinson did a lot of good work as a neighborhood activist and City Commissioner, but lost sight of the rules somewhere along the line  ….. Now that is history, and Cindi can have a fresh start in a new town… Good luck !

Shippey Shack No More !!

…..  Sometimes it’s nice to share good news.


Judge Fred Shippey

…. The one-hundred year- old  Judge Fred  Shippey  House has passed another milestone, and looks to be finally be headed toward success/saving ! ( Here is a picture of the rough house right after it was originally saved and moved to a city owned lot in the historic district about six years ago, right near the New River….)


…. The ownership of the house was transferred this past week to the Riverwalk Trust, the group that manages the Riverwalk…… That is very good news….. Along with the transfer of the house from the Friends of Shippey House came $92,000 to restore the outside…..


Here is how the house looks now, and here it was it should look like soon –



….It took a lot of good citizens to save this important historic house, here is just a partial list with their donation amounts – some donations are in-kind, most are cold cash ! … (sorry if I forgot someone)

City of Fort Lauderdale – $30,000

Cooper Properties – $12,500

Advanced Roofing – $8000

Broward County – $8000

Doug Snyder – $8000

Genia Ellis – $5000

Jim Brady – $3500

Romney Rogers – $2500

Katherine Barry – $2000

Bradley Decklbaum – $2000

Broward Trust for Historic Preservation – $1000

Tim Smith- $1000

Cal Deal – $1000

Ron Centamore – $1000

Jackie Scott – $500

Jack Seiler – $250

…………   good citizens, the all of them !