Published On: Wed, Feb 4th, 2015

Page Two: Barry’s Buzz – Feb. 4, 2015

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Boca Raton Tribune columnist Mike Gora no longer is a named partner of Shapiro, Blasi, Wasserman & Gora, now renamed Shapiro, Blasi & Wasserman, to concentrate on his mediation practice, renting space in his former partner’s office for the time being.


     Staples has acquired Boca based Office Depot for $6.3 billion dollars, voted unanimously by both boards, but still requires regulatory approval. Hopefully, the newly merged company headquarters will remain in Boca,


     FAU board of trustees reelected Anthony Barbar, past president of the FAU Alumni Association, as Chairman and elected Modernizing Medicine founder and CEO Dan Cane vice chair of the governing board.


      Detective agency Pinkerton has moved its regional office from Hollywood to 1900 NW Corporate Blvd. Boca Raton because of the office space available for expansion and proximity to three airports. The Hollywood staff will move to the Boca location which will continue to expand to serve all of Florida, the Caribbean and Latin America.


     Boca City Council reapproved redesigned Tower One Fifty-Five condo downtown, with only Mayor Susan Haynie objecting despite residents’ requests to wait and concerns about height. Now at eight, 10 and 12 stories instead of a “crew cut” roofline, and with fewer units at 170, the project won a 4-1 vote at the downtown Community Redevelopment Agency recent meeting.


     Development could claim another piece of Palm Beach County’s prized Agricultural Reserve if owners of a produce packaging and shipping facility at the southern end of the Ag reserve gets county commissioners to loosen building limits to allow 299 homes and a new upscale shopping center to be built on 37 acres at the northeast corner of Clint Moore Road and State Road 7.


     Radio Shack, which has a store in the West Boca Square center on 441 near Palmetto Park Road, is expected to shut down due to a bankruptcy action, selling off 200 stores and sell off some stores to Sprint.


     Mark and Patti Mezzancello, Delray Beach proprietors of Mussel Beach, are planning to open a new concept in Palm Beach Gardens.


     Now from the TV studios at Lynn University, watch Barry Epstein live with special guest Lynn University Political Professor of American Studies Dr. Robert Watson at to win free tickets to the Cinemark Theatres. You can be on too to promote your business, taping on Monday at 1 p.m., and we send a link of your segment to put on your website and send out in emails to prospects and clients for only $150. It also goes out on Vimeo, Facebook and YouTube. Call 561.852.0000 for details.


     SanTo’s Modern American Buffet & Sushi has its grand opening 4 p.m. Feb. 5, with a “sushi” cutting at 3400 N. Federal Highway, Boca, formerly Gary Woo’s.


    Candidates for Boca Raton City Council will debate at the Gold Coast Tiger Bay Club lunch, 11:30 a.m. Feb. 11 at City Fish Market, Glades and the Turnpike with former Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce president Mike Arts moderating. RSVP at


     Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza, the nation’s leading build-your-own pizza chain, will open its second South Florida location, in Boca Raton, February 5th. To celebrate the grand opening, the restaurant will offer FREE build-your-own artisanal pizzas on, February 6th from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. to anyone who follows Blaze Pizza on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. The fast-casual concept, will be located in the Fifth Avenue Shops at 2146 North Federal Highway.    


      Commuters eager for traffic relief with a new Interstate 95 interchange in Boca Raton will have to wait a bit longer for a smoother ride. The Spanish River Boulevard interchange now under construction is going to take at least seven months longer to be completed. The new interchange will take I-95 traffic directly to Florida Atlantic University. The Florida Department of Transportation initially estimated that the interchange would be done in January 2017. Now, it expects construction to end in the summer of 2017.


     Palm Beach County schools may soon send bill collectors after parents who fail to pay for field trips and school lunches. The district wants to contract with the Florida branch of CheckCare, a national collection agency, to get fully reimbursed for bounced checks. The company would then go after deadbeat parents and would make money through service charges, which range from $25 for a check of $50 or less to 5 percent of the total for checks over $800.


     Palm Beach County Commissioners approved initial terms for a $135 million baseball stadium deal for the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals spring training on 160 acres at the southeast corner of 45th street and Haverhill Road, which would include a 12 acre park with soccer fields that would double as extra parking during baseball season, with hopes of having it ready by 2017. Legislature and State approval is also needed. 


      The NBC network pocketed a record $280 million for its 10 hour broadcast of Sunday’s Super Bowl with a 30 second spot costing a hefty $4.5 million, airing 70 spots during the broadcast. Local NBC affiliate WPTV 30 second spot tab was estimated at $28 to $30,000 during the game, with half of all South Florida households tuned into the game. Face value of Super Bowl tickets were $800 to $1,900. 1967 face value 1st Super Bowl ticket was $12. Secondary market Super Bowl ticket price was $4,000 to $6,500 with some reaching as high as $8,000 for the most coveted skybox seats.


     Blizzards in the Northeast corridor played havoc with South Florida airline schedules. Hundreds of flights in and out of the three airports were cancelled, creating huge and costly headaches for hotels, resorts and cruise lines who saw reservations scrapped. Biggest problem was rebooking tourists and snowbirds on inbound on flights already filled to capacity during the heavy winter season traffic.


     Florida Power & Light revealed a huge profit of $1.9 Billion last year and that was up 9% from 2013. The giant utility 4.7 million customers and operates as a monopoly blessed by the state which guarantees and 11% return on the company’s investments. FP&L parent company NextEra reported earnings of $2.3 Billion for last year up a sizeable 14% from last year.


     Palm Beach County single family home sales wrapped up a nice year for 2014. December sales closed strong with last years’ deals totaling over 16,000, up a solid 11% over the previous year, with nearly 7500 being paid in cash. The County’s short sales reached 963 for the year, off a hefty 52% and foreclosure sales racked up over 2600 for the year, up 92% from the previous year, with foreclosure filings off sharply last year, as Palm Beach county recorded over 3900 filings which was down a hefty 52% for the year. Currently it takes two years to work its way through the court system.


     Not surprisingly, South Florida topped the nation in property insurance costs, despite 10 years of hurricane free years. Average premiums reached over $2,000 annually, nearly double the national average. Insurers also increased deductibles, slashed coverages and added more exclusions. Premiums were hiked almost 50% since the last Hurricane Wilma a decade ago.      


        Boca Leaders meets every Thursday 7:45 a.m. at First Watch, Mission Bay in West Boca, 441, north of Glades Road. Next meeting is Jan. 8. Call 561.852.0000 for more information.             


     Seventh Son, Jupiter Ascending and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water opens at the Cinemark Palace and Premiere theatres. Timbuktu opens at the FAU Living Room theatres. Still Alice opens at the Movies of Delray and Classic Gateway. opens at the Movies of Lake Worth. Into the Woods, Selma, Intersteller and Exodus. G-ds and Kings opens at the Last Picture Show in Tamarac. Read movie capsules at


     The Movies of Delray and The Movies of Lake Worth will be showing The Met Opera Live, simulcast from The Met Opera, and the Encore for the 2014-2015 season. In HD with Dolby Digital 7.1 Surround Sound on new wider screens and new high back seats with more leg room.  Tickets are $19.00 and reserved seats are available.  Tickets are available online and at the box office. Visit and


     Cafe Cinematheque Foreign Films with Shelly Isaacs is every Thursday at 10:30 Movies of Delray 561-638-0020 and Friday at 1:00 p.m. at Movies of Lake Worth 561-968-4545. Visit for more information.


     The 25th annual The Donald M. Ephraim Palm Beach Jewish Film Festival will showcase 31 movies from around the world plays to February 8 shown in four local movie houses: Cinemark Palace 20 in Boca Raton, Cobb Theatres Downtown 16 in Palm Beach Gardens, Frank Theatres in Delray Beach and the closing matinee at City Place Muvico in West Palm Beach. Festival highlights will include the opening night film ABOVE AND BEYOND with producer Nancy Spielberg and a special tribute to stage and screen star Lainie Kazan. Cost is $25. Call 877.318.0071 or at  .   


     Shenandoah runs to March 1. Sophie, Totie & Belle runs March 25-May 17 at the Delray Square Performing Arts, 4809 W. Atlantic Ave. Tickets at 561.880.0319 or visit


    Slow Burn Theatre presents Bonnie & Clyde, playing thru Feb. 9 at the West Boca Performing Arts Center in the West Boca High School, 12811 West Glades Road, Boca Raton. Tickets at or call 866.811.4111.


     I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change will run from February 6 – March 8 at The Broward Stage Door Theatre in Coral Springs. Cabaret is at the Broward Stage Door Theatre, 8036 Sample Road, Coral Springs, to March 15. Visit or call 954.344.7765 for tickets.


    The 2014-15 Broadway series season at the Kravis Center includes; Anything Goes, March 10-15, 2015; Memphis, April 7-12, 2015 and Pippin, April 28-May 3, 2015. To order go to or call 561.832.7469.


        The Delray Beach Senior games will be Jan. 30 to Feb. 6 for ages 50. Entry fees start at $15. To register by Jan. 27 call 561.243.7277 or  More information about competing at the local, state and national levels or starting new local Senior Games can be found at or by contacting the Florida Sports Foundation at 1-866-FLGAMES.

     Delray Beach Playhouse, 950 NW 9th St. Delray Beach presents Other Peoples Money, through Feb. 15. Call 561.272.1281 ext. 4 for tickets.

     Neil deGrasse Tyson, Master of the Universe speaks at the STEAM luncheon, 11:30 a.m. Feb. 5 at the Kravis center Cohen Pavilion, chaired by Yvonne Boice. Tickets are $150, tables of 10, $1400. Register at: or call 561.868.3450 for further information.


         Grammy Award winner Shaggy and the Hot Shot Band are featured at the 20th annual Food for the Poor Building Hope Gale, Feb. 6, honoring Office Depot Foundation President Mary Wong at Boca West Country Club. Call 888-404-4248, ext. 6678 for more information. See


     The 23rd annual Florida Renaissance Festival opens Feb. 7 and continues for six weekends through March 15 at Quiet Waters Park in Deerfield Beach. Each weekend has a separate theme which are detailed on the web site at Tickets are $21 for adults and $9 for children. Call 954-776-1642.


     Levis JCC presents Casino Royale 7 pm Feb. 7 at the Polo Club of Boca Raton. $136 per person, includes cocktails, dinner and 25 chips. For more information, visit, email or call 561.852.3257. You can also email or call 561.852.3253.


     Elton John and Billy Joel Live Tribute Concert, presented by Temple Beth Shira, 7:30 p.m., Feb. 7 at the Countess de Hoernle Theatre in the Spanish River High, Yamato and Jog Roads. Order online at or call 561.912.1453.


     The Original Florida Follies, 2015 show returns starting Feb. 8, Feb. 15, Feb. 22 and March 8 1:45 p.m. at Olympic Heights High School Theatre, 20101 Lyons Road, Boca Raton. Tickets are $28. Call 561.749.0016 for Feb. 8, 954.720.1880 for Feb. 15, 561.338.6860 for Feb. 22 and 561.391.8253 for Mar. 8.


     Celtic Thunder will be at the Kravis Center, 8 p.m. Feb. 10 with Glee star Damian McGinty. Tickets at


     The Dively Frontiers in Globalization Lecture Series welcomes Youngme Moon, professor of business administration at Harvard Business School, 6:30 p.m., Feb. 11, 2015 at the Lynn University Keith C. and Elaine Johnson Wold Performing Arts Center, 3601 N. Military Trail, Boca Raton, FL 33431. Buy tickets at or call 561.237.9000, email: Visit for more information.


     The Adult Maccabi Games is 8 a.m. Feb. 15 at the JCC, 9801 Donna Klein Blvd. Boca Raton. Register or volunteer at or call 561.852.3117.


     Retired Astrophysicist Dr. Kevin Manning speaks free at the Downtown Boca Library 7 pm Feb. 17. RSVP at on the Library Events calendar or call 561.807.7141. More info at


      Business & Professional Division presents SyFy Channel founder, Co-Founder and President of Hollywood Media Corp.; Co-CEO of Laurie S. Silvers, 8 a.m. Feb. 19 at Zinman Hall, Federation campus, 9901 Donna Klein Blvd. $36 per person. Register at networking or call 561,852.3218 or email for more info. The 2014-15 Series concludes April 16 with a cocktail reception featuring Ira Leesfield.


     The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) is marking a quarter century of its signature fundraiser with a look back at the achievements of three long-time supporters. The 25th Annual Book of Hope Luncheon takes place February 19, 2015 from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. The luncheon will honor Marlene Bluestein, Marcy Falcone and Ellen Shapiro and feature a fashion show from the collections of Neiman Marcus.The three Women of Distinction honorees have all been personally affected by digestive diseases, and have worked throughout the years to raise awareness and funds towards finding a cure. For more information, please contact the Foundation at 800-932-2423 or visit


      SBA Communications Corp. chief executive Jeffrey A. Stoops has been named Florida Atlantic University’s Business Leader of the Year and will be celebrated at an awards breakfast. 8 a.m. Feb. 20 at the Boca Raton Resort & Club, 501 East Camino Real in Boca Raton. Previous recipients of the award over the past 23 years, include Jordan Zimmerman, founder of Zimmerman Advertising in Fort Lauderdale; Jim Robo, chairman and CEO of NextEra Energy in Jupiter; and Mike Jackson, chief executive of AutoNation in Fort Lauderdale. To RSVP, call, 561-297-4732 or email


     To the thousands who showed up last year, the airport hangar party to kick off the three-event Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance is a place to see and be seen. This year, the ninth annual weekend from Feb. 20 to 22 starts with the DuPont Registry Live Hangar Party from 6 to 9 p.m. at Atlantic Aviation, 3700 Airport Road, on the grounds of Boca Raton Airport. The bash is billed not only as a display of swanky cars, motorcycles and private jets, with food and drink from local restaurants but also a chance to hobnob with “a who’s who of entertainment, business, auto racing and the auto industry from around the world.” Tickets are $100 at On Feb. 22, there is a classic, vintage and antique car show on the grounds of the Boca Raton Resort & Club. General admission is $60 and a $125 VIP ticket online includes food, wine and cocktails in the Concours d’Gourmet Café Pavilions. Comedian Howie Mandel is the talent for the Saturday night Grand Gala Dinner Auction and Show for supporters of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County. Tickets start at $500.


     To celebrate ‘Love Your Dog Week’, there will be plenty of free paw-raising ‘fur and fun’ unleashed as the general public and their pooches come out to enjoy The Great Doggie Dine-Out & Paws Fest held to support Tri-County Animal Rescue (TCAR), noon to 9 pm, February 21st at Sanborn Square in Downtown Boca at 72 North Federal Highway. Featuring themed activities for pet lovers of all ages and their furry friends kick-off with opening ceremonies that include a TCAR parade of alumni pups and their families, yoga and massages for dogs and their owners, a first-ever Great ‘Smooch Your Pooch’ Challenge, and Yappy Hour Singles ‘Speed Dating With Dogs’. There will also be curbside dining by Gourmet Truck Expo, a Tails & Tales Showcase featuring pet-centric vendors and event sponsors, contests and prizes, entertainment with doggie dancing and an after-dusk ‘big screen’ movie-in-the-park pet feature film presentation. For more information on The Great Doggie Dine-Out & Paws Fest and related programming, sponsorship, partnership, exhibitor and volunteer opportunities contact Jon Kaye ( or Victoria Jones ( at Kaye Communications 561-392-5166.


     Emmy Award winning actress Linda Evans speaks at the Jewish Family Services Reflections of Hope Luncheon, 11:00 a.m. Feb. 26 at Boca West Country Club, 20583 Boca West Drive. For more information, call 561.852.5013 or email Visit


     Sloburn Theatre presents The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, starting 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26 to April 19, at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, 201 SW 5th Ave. Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. Tickets at


     The award-winning Boca Raton Community High School Drama Department presents the multi-TONY Award winning musical comedy, The Drowsy Chaperone on February 26-March 1. General admission tickets are $10 in advance (before 2/26) and $15 after with open seating in the Kathryn Lindgren Theatre.  General admission group rates (for twenty or more) are $9 each and VIP advance reserved seating is available upon request for $15 each. For more info, call (561) 338-1533 or visit


     Local estate planning professionals committed to philanthropic giving and the future of the Jewish community will once again honor their own at the Mitzvah Society Cocktail Reception at 6:00 pm, Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at St. Andrews Country Club in Boca Raton. The Cocktail Reception is chaired by Elyssa Kupferberg and Marjorie Horwin. The couvert is $50 per person. Dietary laws will be observed. For additional information or to RSVP, contact 561.852.3109 or



      The music of the Beatles will rock The Pap Corps Walkathon, creating a fun-filled 1960’s theme for the 15th annual event. Members from all 52 chapters, as well as the entire community, are invited to Come Together to Beat Cancer on Saturday, March 14th. The event will take place at 8:30 am at FAU’s Boca Raton campus. Walkathon registration, including a t-shirt, is only $20. To walk, donate or support


     The 9th Annual Festival of the Arts BOCA, presented by the Schmidt Family Centre for the Arts, will bring ten days of dazzling and diverse cultural experiences to South Florida March 6 – 15, 2015 at the Mizner Park Amphitheater, 590 Plaza Real and Mizner Park Cultural Arts Center, 201 Plaza Real (2nd Floor) in Boca Raton.  This season’s Festival opens on March 6, 2015 with the Florida premiere of the ten time Academy Award winning film, West Side Story. Tickets for the 9th Annual Festival of the Arts BOCA range from $15 to $125 per person and are available at or by calling (866) 571-ARTS (866-571-2787).  Multi-event and full Festival packages are also available. 


     The West Boca High Drama Department presents the spring musical, The Addams Family, 8 pm, March 6, 7, 13 and 14, with a 2 pm matinee on March 8 and 14. For more info, visit or call 561.672.2066.


     The Palm Beach Pops season includes: a tribute to Marvin Hamlisch, featuring Donna McKechnie, Jodie Benson and Doug LaBrecque on 7:30 p.m. March 7 at the Boca Raton Community Church and 7:30 p.m. March 8 at the Kravis Center. Tickets are on sale now. Call 561.832.7677 or visit,, or for more information.


     NY Times bestselling author Brad Meltzer speaks at JARC’s 29th Annual Gala Dinner Dance March 8, 2015 at Boca West Country Club. Tickets are $250. Call 561.558.2572 or visit for more information.


     Soroptimist International of Boca Raton-Deerfield Beach is providing grants to non-profit organizations helping women and/or girls in the area to fund a special project. Contact for applications, due by March 15.


     The JEC 10th Anniversary Gala Dinner is 5:30 pm cocktails, 6:30 dinner & reception March 15 at the Double Tree by Hilton, 100 Fairway Drive, Deerfield Beach, honoring Dr. William and Debbie Rand; Jewish Unity Awardees- Dr. Allen and Marlene Josephs, Founders Award- Rabbi Shimon and Nechama Feder.
Honored with a special candle lighting ceremony are10 Ambassadors of Light. Couvert is $180. Email: or call 561.544.2854 for reservations.


    South Florida’s annual Boating and Beach Bash for People with Disabilities ( will celebrate its 7th anniversary on March 21, 2015 at Spanish River Park, 3100 North Ocean Blvd., in Boca Raton. For more information on Boca Raton’s Boating and Beach Bash for People with Disabilities go to or follow the event on Facebook To volunteer, sponsor or make a donation to the event, contact Jay Van Vechten at (561) 715-2622 or at Or at PO Box 99, Boca Raton, FL 33429.


     Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton presents the 17th annual Honor Your Doctor Luncheon, 11:30 a.m. March 26, 2015 at Boca West Country Club, 20583 Boca West Drive, fundraiser for the Helen M. Babione Medical Scholarship fund to benefit medical and nursing school students attending local universities. Call 561.299.1429 or visit for more information.


     Rotary Club Downtown Boca presents the 17th Annual Honor Your Doctors luncheon March 26 at Boca West Country Club. The public is again invited to nominate their favorite doctor by downloading a nomination form online at the website and donate $40 per nomination (there is no limit to how many nominations you can make) or $100 for 3 nominations; all nominated doctors will be invited to attend the luncheon as a guest. Tickets for the luncheon are available to the public for $100.00 per person. The event is a fundraiser for the Helen M. Babione Medical Scholarship and will benefit medical and nursing school students attending four local universities: Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at FAU, Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing at FAU, Lynn University and Palm Beach State College.


     The Palm Beach International Film Festival will be March 26-April 2 at the Cinemark Palace 20 & XD in Boca and others. Individual tickets and packages will be available at in March. Membership and sponsorship opportunities are now available. Call 561.362.0003 or visit for more information.


      The Boca Walk to End Alzheimer’s Promise Garden Luncheon is 11:30 am to 1:30 pm at Boca West Country Club, 20583 Boca West Drive, Boca Raton, Fl.

RSVP at or call for reservations or more information to Pamela Polani at 561.496.4222 or email:


     The American Cancer Society’s signature fundraising event for South Palm Beach County, the Fourth Annual Hope Gala, will take place March 28, 2015 at The Cultural Arts Center and Jazziz at Mizner Park in Boca Raton, Florida. The evening will begin on Saturday, March 28th at 6:30 PM at Jazziz Nightlife with a Red Carpet arrival, cocktail party, silent auction, dinner at Cultural Arts Center (next door to Jazziz) live auction, dancing, special speakers and guests, and an after-party back at Jazziz. Tickets, tables and sponsorships available. For further information call Ellen Vaughan, Senior Manager, Distinguished Events 561-650-0143,  or visit


     Jay Leno will perform at “The Concert for the Children” with the Atlantic City Boys, March 31 at the Akoya Amphitheatre, on the lawn of Boca West sponsored by the Boca West Foundation. 100% of the proceeds to benefit 15 children’s charities reaching over 3,000 children in the Boca Raton and surrounding area, including the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County Annual Campaign supporting agency programs that benefit children. Each of the charities has been given the ability to sell tickets to their donor base and keep the proceeds, with expected sales of about $150,000 to them. Doors open at 6 pm, The Atlantic City Boys at 8 pm, Jay Leno at 9 pm. $150 per person. For more information and to register for this event visit the Boca West Foundation website at or contact the Foundation directly at 561-488-6980.


     The Relay for Life of West Boca will be noon to midnite May 2 at Olympic Heights High School on Lyons Road north of Glades Road with a theme of Kenducky Derby: Relay for a Cure. Go to to register and form teams. Call 1.800.227.2345 for further information.


     Israelfest 2015 is 3 pm May 17 at the Mizner Park amphitheatre. Free community wide event for the whole family. Kosher food available for purchase. For sponsorship opportunities, call 561.852.3169. is the best networking group in the area and meets at Hurricane Grill & Wings in the Mission Bay Shopping Center, next to Office Max, 10125 Glades Road, 33498 on alternate Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Cost is $60 per quarter. Check out the website for openings in some categories. Next meeting is Jan. 4. Call 561.852.0000 for further information.


     David Weir, South Florida Business Report and Warren Redlich, West Boca News contributed items to the column.


     Barry Epstein, APR, is a noted public relations, marketing and political consultant based in Boca Raton, president of the, the, the and the founder and former president of the West Boca Chamber of Commerce; with a weekly internet television show on, and His motto is: Public Relations is the enemy of anonymity. email:, or fax column items to 561.451.0000.  Read his blog on His blog is also on, as well as on the Sun-Sentinel/Jewish Journal website at – and on his website:

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