Local wins big check
When Georgia Miller walked into the room she thought everyone was there to congratulate her on winning a Christmas sweater contest. It was much better.
Driving training for foster kids
A new program helps teens and young adults in the foster care system ages 15 to 21 get their learner’s permit and then a license. It pays for driver’s education classes and car insurance through state funding.
School welcomes Japanese students
On Dec. 11, the robotics club at Orlando Science Charter School welcomed 20 Japanese students from Meizen High School to share science knowledge and how school works in each other’s countries.
Blogger encourages healthy eating
The 5-foot-tall Annia Villa — the “tiny” in Tiny Taster — takes dishes that are simple and quick enough for every day and elevates them just a little while packing in big flavor.
Winter Parker pens thiller
The story takes readers on a ride after an earthquake and the release of hungry, green-eyed serpents, which take over the ocean eating everything in sight.
Ladies run the table
Residents at some local senior living communities spend their golden years trying new hobbies and sports, including eight women who have their own pool playing group at Village on the Green in Longwood.
Hepatitis C cure announced
In more than 90 percent of trial patients of a new drug, hepatitis C was undetectable in their blood 12 weeks after treatment, which doctors consider a cure.
Live-tweeting from 1893
A Rollins College class took social media’s “throwback” posting theme to the next level last week, treating the public to a day of tweeting and instagramming the news like it was 1893.
Seniors learn to Skype
Dealing with confusing pop ups, emailing, opening photo attachments of their newly arrived grandchildren, even turning a computer on can be a challenge for seniors who didn’t grow up with this type of technology at their fingertips.
Station celebrates milestone
Central Florida's only stictly jazz station, which began in the days when UCF was FTU — and was also once named WFTU — celebrated 35 years on Sept. 12.
New hair trend hits
Women step into Cherry Blow Dry Bar wearing messy top-knots and thrown up pony tails. They leave with tresses fit for the red carpet.
Female vet headlines event
After 28 years in the service Wilma Vaught retired as a brigadier general, for many years was one of the most highly decorated military women — a trailblazer for women in the military.
Students study caffeine effects
Ten high school students were taught how to isolate and test a piece of their DNA that research has shown is an indicator for how a person metabolizes caffeine during a summer program at Rollins College.
Mom creates charity after loss
The Finley Project, created by Maitland mom Noelle Moore, is aimed at helping moms heal after they’ve lost a child.
Making a movie in 48 hours
Filmmakers from all over the world, including Orlando, race the clock each year to make a movie in just 48 hours during The 48 Hour Film Project.
Seniors get gardening tips
Local nonprofit Our Whole Community and the Winter Park Housing Authority have partnered up to help improve seniors’ access to healthy foods.
Take a bite out of hunger
Share Our Strength’s Taste of the Nation Orlando is celebrating its 25th year helping to combat childhood hunger this year. In its 25 years, it has raised more than $3 million,
Prints can provide clues
A few minutes and a little wishbone-shaped piece of wax could make all the difference for a parent looking for their missing child.
Teacher finds his voice
Joshua Katz, a University High School algebra teacher, is running for school board after his TEDx Talk on the “toxic culture of education” garnered public support encouraging him to run.
Jobs in unlikely places
In 2012 Fifth Third partnered with company NextJob, identified customers who had lost their jobs, and offered them NextJob’s employment seeking service.
Dancing through dementia
In 2013 a team of researchers released a study that shows staying active — with your brain and body — could be effective in staving off Alzheimer’s disease.
Can Lake Baldwin VA stay open?
Study says that even after the new Lake Nona-based VA Medical Center opens, the growing veteran population in Central Florida will require at least 300,000 more square feet of space for medical services.
Capitalists go environmental
First Green Bank opened its first location in Winter Park, expanding the Central Florida community bank with a mission to conserve the environment to its fifth location.
Seniors keep creativity alive
Palm Valley is home to a surprising amount of talented senior artists. Some residents have just discovered their artistic talents, while others have spent their lives expressing themselves through art.
Elementary artists compete
The students competed in the school’s first time participating in the National Parent Teacher Association Reflections Program, inspired by the words: “Believe, Dream, Inspire.”
Ice cream for a cause
There are two Ronald McDonald Houses in the Central Florida area where families whose children are being treated in nearby hospitals can stay for free.
Training through simulation
The goal of the Virtual Dementia Tour is to reach all communities, from caregivers to grocery store workers, to give them an elevated social consciousness and awareness for dealing with those with dementia.
Student starts hula hoop biz
When Morgan Kennedy was chosen to participate in a work hula hooping contest, she had no idea a toy would completely change her life.
Charity helps families with sick kids
You couldn’t tell Chanell was sick just by looking at her, and she did her best to never let on that she was. Her bravery inspired her parents to start the Chanell Wright Foundation out of their Apopka home.
Pet Rescue moves in to new home
The new Pet Rescue by Judy Animal Resource Campus will open on March 23, a dream facility that founder Judy Sarullo has worked toward for the past 21 years.
Not vaccinating comes with risks
Since 2008, the rate of parents choosing to not vaccinate their children for non-medical reasons in Orange and Seminole counties has been creeping up, worrying doctors.
Club looks to fund renovations
At the Woman's Club of Winter Park's 99th birthday party last month, members announced a plan to raise $300,000 in the next three years.
Tests serve as crystal ball
At the Winter Park Health Assessment program at the Florida Hospital for Women Winter Park, clients can get their DNA tested for potential health issues to find them before they strike.
Fees fuel school enrichment
At the right business, just with the swipe of their credit card, a consumer can help a school keep the sound of music flowing from band classes, or a school garden grow.
Helping vets find jobs
More than 30 employers attended the job fair in Orlando on Jan. 23, where many veterans and their spouses mingled with hiring managers hoping to find jobs.
Nicholsons give back
For Sonja and Tony Nicholson, giving is not an option; it’s a requirement. It’s hard to go through life in Central Florida without seeing their names somewhere.
Custom woodwork in W.P.
From beginning to end, there’s a man, not a machine, involved in the making of a piece of furniture from design studio Hog Eat Hog in Winter Park.
Parade surprises pilot
Winter Park native Lt. Chuck Nadd received a hero’s welcome parade after he returned home from Afghanistan last week.
Kilts, cabers, whiskey and pipers
The sights, sounds and smells are all Scotland, but if you’re a Central Florida resident, you don’t have to leave home to experience it.
Builder celebrates 50 years
In 1963, Rodney Kincaid went home and told his wife he’d quit his job. She asked what his new one was going to be, and he said he was going to have to make one for himself.
Walking for a cure
The day of her race when her ankle, still weak from her accident long ago, began to wobble beneath her and her knees began to buckle in exhaustion, it was hard to keep pushing.
Skip the mall, shop small
Retailers on Park Avenue are hoping the community will come out and support small, local businesses on Small Business Saturday.
Illustrators' works come alive
Many have called him the “master of the googly eye.” Long’s zany characters have danced across the pages of dozens of children’s books, many of which he’s authored himself.
The creator of jewelry line Eureka’s Treasures hopes that those who purchase her jewelry use it to remember special moments.
Get wine your way
Wine on the Way owners Adam and Gigi Chilvers curate the wine like a collection, but one that could entertain grandiose or lean budgets.
Homes sell off energy
This past spring, the Wilsons paid just 25 cents for their electricity, water and sewage consumption.
Making admission easier
College Creed was started as a way to help already well-prepared high school students polish their college admissions essays.
Dancer's dream job
Florida Tribal Dance in Orlando offers unique tribal belly dancing classes in a welcoming, inclusive atmosphere.
Locally-made ice cream
At Lu Lu’s Ice Cream Shop in Winter Park, you’ll find locally made ice cream at a price the whole family can enjoy.
County wins health award
Orange County Public Schools is one of only eight districts in Florida to receive the top Gold Award for its healthy policies.