New River Branch Library to close for remodeling

The New River Branch Library will be closing Oct. 1 to prepare for an extensive makeover, according to a Pasco County news release. The renovation is being paid for funding provided through a general obligation bond approved by voters in November 2018 to upgrade Pasco County’s seven branch libraries. Voters also approved general obligation bonds to pay for improvements to the county’s … [Read more...]

Create a native landscape — use right plant, right place

Florida has an abundance of beautiful native plants. There are vines, trees, shrubs, ground covers and a few palms that are native to the state, and can make excellent additions to the landscape. Some of these natives even serve as food sources for local wildlife, such as butterflies and some bats, and some can help negate the harsh heat and sun, and reduce the potential for … [Read more...]

Nikki Alvarez-Sowles named county clerk & comptroller

Gov. Ron DeSantis has named Nikki Alvarez-Sowles to serve as the Pasco County Clerk & Comptroller. She will serve in that role through January 2021, filling out the balance of term for the post vacated by Paula S. O’ Neil, who retired on July 1. Alvarez-Sowles is the county’s eighth clerk & comptroller. She was named an interim successor by Sixth Judicial Circuit Chief Judge … [Read more...]

Start Your Day With A Fresh Breakfast At Keke’s

By William Jacko Special to The Laker/Lutz News Breakfast can be the most important meal of the day, so why not start it with something tasty and healthy at Keke’s Breakfast Café, in the Willow Bend Towne Center in Lutz.  Owners Stephen Poletta and Scott Crawford pride themselves on the freshness of Keke’s food. “We cut our potatoes, hand-crack our eggs, and never use liquid egg mix,” … [Read more...]

Italian Food Inspired by Love

By William Jacko Special to The Laker/Lutz News Long before Andrea Mannino founded Amici Pizza, it was the prospect of love, not business, that inspired him to leave his hometown of Carini, Italy, for America. His son, Vincent, smiles as he tells the story of the family restaurant his parents founded 18 years ago in Wesley Chapel. “My parents are from the same town in Sicily,” relays … [Read more...]

Send us your First Day of School photos

Schools across The Laker/Lutz News coverage area are ringing in a new academic year — and along with that comes traditional First Day of School photos. The photos that parents, grandparents, friends and other relatives take on that first day are a fun way to mark a new year of learning. Plus, they’re like tiny time capsules, capturing a moment and recording changes in height, hair styles and … [Read more...]

Sister Mildred enjoyed ‘tinkering’ with machinery

Sister Mildred Gelis, OSB, was known for motoring around Saint Leo University on her little scooter. When her scooter failed her, her mechanical skills went to work — to get it running again. She also was known to have a knack for maintaining cars, helping to keep costs down for her community of the Benedictine Sisters of Florida, who live in Holy Name Monastery in St. Leo. These are … [Read more...]

Pasco aims for safe students, campuses

The Pasco County School Board passed a resolution last week supporting the Student Crime Watch Program and emphasizing the board’s encouragement to use available tools to help keep students and campuses safe. The resolution notes that the Student Crime Watch Program gives students and the community the ability to make anonymous reports of “unsafe and potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or … [Read more...]

Paninis help relieve stress on school days

It’s August — and that means families will be getting back into their school routines. Besides gearing up in the morning, there’s the evening to think about, too. As kids get into their extracurricular activities and homework habits, there is usually one part of the day that can get particularly stressful: dinnertime. We all hear that this should be family time, a time for no TV, a … [Read more...]

Palm Harbor’s Wall Springs Park

A place where everyone can reach great heights, see priceless views You don’t have to be a millionaire to have water views worth millions. Just spend a little time at Wall Springs Park in Palm Harbor. There, you can see the sultry Gulf of Mexico and mullet-jumping Boggy Bayou from fishing piers, docks and a $1.7-million observation tower that’s accessible by wheelchair all the way to … [Read more...]