Published On: Thu, Oct 28th, 2010

Barry's Buzz

By Barry Epstein

You heard it here first: Fresh Market opening in Mission Bay Plaza in West Boca, Chipotle opening in Westwind center in West Boca and Best Buy opening in Target center in Delray.

Office Depot Chairman and CEO Steve Odland will resign effective Nov. 1 to be replaced by lead director and former NFL President Neil Austrian who will step in as interim chairman and CEO.

State Senator Elect Maria Sachs is currently on a trade mission to Israel.  She traveled to Israel with the purpose of expanding trade relations between the State of Florida and the Nation of Israel.  Israel is a world leader in biotechnology and alternative energy research, boasting the most technically trained workforce in the world, with 135 engineers per 10,000 citizens.

Congratulations to Boca Raton High School coach and teacher David Robbe, Boca Raton Regional Hospital CEO and president Jerry Fedele, real estate magnet and philanthropist Marta Batmasian, community benefactors and business owners Arlene and Jim Sclafani and the city’s events coordinator Emily Lilly, this years Rotary OPAL recipients.

The inauguration of FAU president Mary Jane Saunders will be Friday, Oct. 29. Weeklong festivities included a concert on Oct. 24 and a luncheon on Oct. 26.

Frannie Sheridan brings her one woman show, “Confessions of a Jewish Shicksa – Dancing on Hitler’s Grave”, for one final performance at 2 p.m. this Sunday, Oct. 31 to Zinman Hall in West Boca. $20 Ticket information at  561.852.3241.

Memories Milestones and Memoirs, A Writing Workshop, Emily Rosen, Instructor, will begin a new session Three Mondays Nov 1, 8, 15 -  from 12:30 to 3 PM at the Boca Raton Community Center call for more info: 561.393.7995,

Noted Lynn University political professor Dr. Robert Watson will headline the Nov. 9 7:30 a.m. West Boca Chamber of Commerce breakfast sponsored by eBarbershop.com at Boca Lago Country Club. RSVP to info@westbocachamber.com or call 482.9333.

Vices, A Love Story opens at Caldwell Theatre on Nov. 12. Get tickets at www.caldwelltheatre.com.

County Commissioner Steven L. Abrams voted in favor of the list of charities to receive the fountain money collected at the countys Palm Beach International Airport and urged to public to toss in more loose change. Since 1988, the county has collected the money tossed in the fountain at the airport and donated to a list of approved local charities such as United Way, Salvation Army and Alzheimers Community Care. In addition, the local retail concessionaire, Paradies-Palm Beach, LLC, adds an additional contribution of $250. “In this economy, every penny counts!  So next time you are at the airport, throw some coins in the fountain and make a wish.  You will be helping others too”, said Abrams. The change is collected monthly and the average amount donated is approximately $350.

County Commissioner Steven L. Abrams announced that the Board of County Commissioners approved an agreement to restore the Pondhawk Wetlands, a 79-acre natural area located in Boca Raton between Yamato and Spanish River Blvd (just east of Military Trail). Site restoration activities are currently underway and expected to be completed in December 2010.  The project creates approximately 11 acres of wetland habitat for use by wildlife that will include the great egret, osprey, and alligators.  The area will also provide public access areas including a 12-foot wide multi-use trail along the shoreline of Blue Lake.

“This is a good example of a successful partnership between the city and county in obtaining federal grant dollars benefiting the local environment,” said Abrams. “The public access component is also terrific because it is such a unique environmentally rich area.”

Also, the sand that has been removed from the area is being used at the county’s Osprey Point Golf Course, opening Nov. 6 and 7 in the South County Regional Park, just west of 441 in West Boca, and the city’s library promenade. Federal funds in the amount of $50,000 will be used to fund this project and no local match is required.  The funds will be used for the planning portion of the project, which will enhance the water quality and habitat functions.

The Palm Beach County office of the American Jewish Committee will hold its 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Trump International Golf Club, 3505 Summit Boulevard, West Palm Beach, Thursday, December 2nd,  6:00 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $125.  Call 561-994-7286 or visit palmbeach@ajc.org.  The evening includes cocktails and a lavish buffet.

Movies opening this week include A Film Unfinished, Fair Game, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest, The Concert and Saw 3D.

Happy Halloween to all. Enjoy the fun with your family and loved ones.

Barry Epstein, APR, is a noted public relations, marketing and political consultant based in Boca Raton, and is president of the West Boca Chamber of Commerce (www.westbocachamber.com), with a weekly internet television show on www.wrpbitv.com. His website is www.publicrelations.nu and his email is pr@publicrelations.nu. His blog is also on the Sun-Sentinel Jewish Journal site: http://barrys-journal.blogspot.com/. You can friend him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/barryepstein or follow him on Twitter @cme4pr. Fax items for the column to 561.451.0000 or email to: bocaspindoctor@gmail.com.