Lakeridge Winery Harvest Festival a Smashing Success

Thank You Cornerstone Volunteers!

by Susan Bennett, Regional Development Director,Foundation-Lake/Sumter


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Volunteers Nancy Collins and Nancy LaPointe insisted Development Director Susan Bennett (middle) join them in their "official" Harvest Festival photo.


The weekend of June 22-24 heralded the beginning of not only Lakeridge Winery’s Harvest season, but also what was to become Tropical Storm Debby.  But those gray skies held off at least for Friday and Saturday to ensure the Harvest Festival was open for business and taking donations for Cornerstone Hospice.  While scores of football players and booster parents volunteered parking vehicles on the slopes of the winery, our fine Cornerstone volunteers “manned” the gate taking $2 donations per person.  They not only took donations but also served as ambassadors, listening as many of the guests told their own hospice stories and answering questions about hospice care and volunteer opportunities.  And some even took the opportunity to stomp the grapes…a big tradition at this event!  Nearly 20 of our volunteers worked side by side with Miss Lilly, a staff member of the winery.  Even with Sunday being a wash out, the volunteers took in over $3,400 in donations!  Thank you volunteers, we truly couldn’t do this event successfully without all of your help!



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Jim Rediske, Marilyn Russell with therapy dog Buddy who was quite a big hit with the guests wearing his "hospice" hat, and Alice Gutkowski work Friday afternoon as the patrons began streaming into the event.

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Volunteers Duaine Deason, Eva Shore, and Pat Taranto pictured here with winery staff member Miss Lilly who just happened to be a former neighbor of Pat's.....they barely had a chance to get caught up with the heavy flow of visitors on Saturday morning.

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Flanking Miss Lilly are volunteers Liz Andrews and Bev Grush, taking a quick breather while the crowds slowed down Saturday afternoon.







Cornerstone Partners with Bok Tower Gardens

By Ginny Wolfe, Community Relations Coordinator-PHH

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What do flower gardens, a carillon tower, and Cornerstone Hospice have in common?   All can provide comfort and solace to the families of hospice patients!  Emily Earle, Development Manager for Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales, and I have developed a plan to provide a number of free annual memberships to the Gardens for Cornerstone’s patient families.  The complimentary memberships will include admission to the Gardens for one year for a couple or a family (two adults and their children/grandchildren), discounts in the Gardens Blue Palmetto Café and Gift Shop, and free or discounted admission to many other Florida gardens and museums.



The centerpiece of the gardens is a 205-foot tall, Art Deco, carillon tower, constructed of coquina stone and pink and gray marble.  The tower contains 60 bells, ranging in weight from 16 pounds to nearly 12 tons.  Live concerts are performed every afternoon at 1 and 3 p.m., and recorded concerts are played every half-hour.  The 50 acres of gardens include flower gardens, the pine ridge trail, and the Pinewood Mansion.  A new children’s garden is being developed along with a new Florida Garden. 


This partnership is the result of the Community Relations Department’s outreach to the non-medical community to educate the public about the services of Cornerstone Hospice. 



Community Relations Corner

"Partners in Health" Opportunity

by Cheryl Rumbley, Community Relations Coordinator - Lake/Sumter


One of the ways we are connecting with the community in Lake County is by participating with the YMCA in its “Partners in Health” free seniors program which is designed to provide seniors with information to start living a healthy and active lifestyle. 



This is a year-long program with monthly doc talks, vendor tables and special programs.



Topics already addressed have included Healthy Heart, Memory and Movement, Men’s Health, a Zumbathon, and a Fitness Classathon.   July’s event focused on Women’s Health and August will address Reducing Stress.  Other future topics will include Cholesterol Education, Breast Cancer Awareness, and Diabetes Awareness.  Cornerstone Hospice has joined 24 other companies as sponsors for these events.  Each event includes an opportunity for us to have an information table and an introduction to the attendees with a few minutes to address the group.



June and July



By Claire Gaynor, Community Relations Coordinator-Orange/Osceola

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Clinical Liaison Alex Newsom visited Access Osceola TV Station to cover our Cornerstone Salutes! program and talk about the need for Veterans in the community to step forward to assist as volunteers for our various Salutes!   Interviewing Alex is Osceola County TV personality Carla Banks, Manager at Access Osceola TV.




The summer months, June and July, started off with a Pastor Wives & Women in Ministry Tea held at Maison Jardin where about 300 ladies showed up to be inspired by motivational speakers and a lovely breakfast.  Since Cornerstone Hospice was a sponsor, our table was never empty as many parish wives learned about our services.   Gulfstream Harbor held its health fair so that its 50+ residents could learn more about community services.  As education is a key to building relationships, Sandy Yochem, Clinical Liaison, and I conducted a presentation for Comfort Keepers staff in Osceola County.  The staff was eager to share its experiences and learn when they need to call in our services.  Terra Vista rehab kept Claire busy with four in-services to staff on “Senior Sensitivity” that was well received.  Cornerstone Hospice was invited to a breakfast hosted by Community Vision for non-profits to share ideas on how to get Osceola County to work better with government and companies to help its citizens. This was well attended by many organizations in Osceola County that helped develop an “action” plan.


The St. Cloud Chamber of Commerce is known for its big July 4 event and this year was no exception.  Thousands of people showed up for a day of festivities, ending with their fireworks display.  Cornerstone Hospice always sponsors an event during the day so our banner is flying high.  This is a time to honor veterans as well which Alex Newsom, Sandy Yochem and I did at three facilities in one day.  It is always a very emotional experience that touches the hearts of those who attend.  Alex also did a spot on Kissimmee Access TV to bring awareness of our Veterans Salutes program as well as asking for veteran volunteer support.  The Central  Florida Black Nurses Association held its two-day conference inviting us to partake  in its health fair so that these nurses could learn more about what we do and where we serve our community. 


There are Angels and Heroes among Us

By Susan Bennett, Regional Development Director-Foundation, Lake/Sumter



Cornerstone Hospice realizes every day that our most valuable asset is the staff members who provide incredible hands-on care for our patients. In 2011, the Foundation introduced the Angels and Heroes program, which grew out of a naturally occurring trend.  Families and caregivers of patients often sent in charitable contributions to honor the Cornerstone staff members who assisted their loved one.  By formalizing the program, the foundation now notifies the staff members and their supervisors, and presents them with an Angels and Heroes certificate and pin. 


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Pictured left to right:  Patty Clark, Dr. Ajit Hansalia, and Anita Cross.


Remarkably, a record nine staff members from the Tavares Hospice House were honored by one family—the family of Judith Gertner.  These nine valuable staff members work morning, noon and night, weekends and weekdays, so it was impossible to find a time to gather everyone together.  Marcella Bland, house manager, will help to ensure everyone receives their recognition.  Congratulations and thank you!


Ruth Boswell

Patty Clark

Anita Cross

Cecilia Garnett

Wendy Hancock

Dr. Ajit V Hansalia

Dawn LaRoe

Beth Prater

Doris Williamson


Home(s) for Sale by Foundation

By Desirée Coleman-Cohrn, Director of Planned Gifts and Major Gifts Cornerstone Hospice Foundation


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The Foundation inherited three mobile home sites in the Lady Lake area. With a little TLC these properties could be ideal for an in-law or single person needing a residence. All three properties are contiguous and are just minutes from the thriving, friendliest hometown of The Villages. Nestled in a woodsy area on Happy Lane, each is gated and has acreage for leisure activities.  The properties are listed with Morris Realty and the starting price is $12,000.


If you are interested, please contact Desirée Coleman-Cohrn at extension 6728 for more information.




Upcoming Foundation Events

Check out the diverse events coming up in the next few months that support Cornerstone Hospice. Staff, family, friends, and neighbors are invited to sign up to play at some of Central Florida’s finest golf courses or to enjoy live music and a glass of local wine from Lakeridge Winery at the harvest festival. We’re regularly adding events, and we hope to see you at some this year!



·        Harbor Hills for Hospice “Talents” Fundraiser


Neighbors sell their “specialty” such as homemade scarves, fresh scones, photography, poetry, etc. to each other and then donate the money to Cornerstone Hospice.  “Talents” is an on-going year-round fundraising activity.  Contact Susan Bennett for a copy of the catalog.


·        Women for Hospice Monthly Luncheon

Held the 4th Friday of every month except August and November, and the annual Christmas Luncheon on the 1st Friday of December, at varying Lake County Locations

11 am to noon:  Social Time

Noon to 1:30 pm Lunch, Style Show and Raffle

Tickets:  $24

Contact Susan Bennett for more information


Aug                  No meeting

Sept 28            Membership Coffee at the Hope Chest


  • Mad Hatter Tea Party Fundraiser 6B

October 6th

11:30 am to 1:30 pm

Island View Restaurant


Tickets are $25




·        Mad Hatter Tea Party Fundraiser 6B

October 13th

11:30 am to 1:30 pm

Ramon Theater (in partnership with the Frostproof Chamber)


Tickets are $15

·        Royal Highlands Monarch Women’s Golf Association’s Annual Memorial Golf Benefit

October 11, 2012.  All day event includes golf tournament, raffle, silent and live auctions plus hole sponsorships and lunch.  Contact Susan Bennett 352-742-6807

·        Bushnell Fall Festival

October 20, 2012

9 am to 7 pm- Booth run by Sumter County Advisory Committee volunteers.  Call Susan Bennett 352-742-6807 for more information

·        Care for the Caregiver Event

We are doing a “Care for the Caregiver” Event at the Art Ensemble in Winter Haven, 1000 American Superior Blvd. The event is free for community and staff education to discuss caregiver strain and designed to give caregivers coping tools. The event will feature professional speaker Carol O’Dell, author of Mothering Mother: A Daughter’s Humorous and Heartbreaking Memoir. She has been profiled on several Fox news stations as well as CNN. We are doing an inservice for employees at the Winter Haven office on Nov. 9 and at the Arts Ensemble for the public on Nov. 10. Call Kathleen Border at the Winter Haven Foundation office 863-291-5571.

·        Season of Trees by the Women for Hospice

Nov. 13 – 17, 2012  Women for Hospice presents Season of Trees 2012 at the Community Center in Donnelly Park located at downtown Mount Dora.  The event begins with a Gala on Tuesday, November 13 from 5 to 7 pm.  Come to Mount Dora’s annual kickoff to Christmas and shop for your holiday décor and gifts plus chances to win from several raffle prizes.  The shop will be open for sales Wed. Nov. 14 – Sat. Nov. 17 from 10 am to 4:30 pm.  For more information contact Susan Bennett.

Quote of the Month

Vivian Norrell, RN, Polk County Clinical Liaison



“It is not enough to have a good mind. The main thing is to use it well.”   -Rene Descartes- (1596-1650)