South Florida judge who ruled on gay adoption case set to retire

By : Wire Report
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MIAMI | For the past three years, Judge Cindy Lederman has walked by a half-dozen statues of playful bear cubs every day on her way up to her high-ceilinged, top-floor office looking out toward Miami’s waterfront. On a shelf behind her desk, below rows of glass awards and family photos, sit two teddy bears. In six months, she’ll take them with her and walk past the statues for the last time.

The stuffed bears are from a program the retiring judge helped start 20 years ago to give every child who came to juvenile court a teddy bear. The building, Miami-Dade County’s three-year-old children’s courthouse, and its bear statutes — meant to be played with by those same unlucky children who find themselves needing court hearings — were a project she began working on with colleagues more than a decade ago to replace Miami-Dade’s previous and notoriously horrible children’s courthouse.

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Positive Living: Puppy Love

By : Greg Stemm
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For the past several years I’ve been asking God for a husband. Instead she gave me a puppy.

Now far be it from me to question God’s will. Although, I do have to wonder about the benefit analysis she might have gone through in making this decision. I adore my new 4 month old chiweenie girl named “Joy,” but I thought I’d do my own comparative analysis to see if a puppy or a husband was a better choice. I thought I’d look at six categories to see which won out on each. I’ll be honest with you, as I begin this column I have no idea who will come out on top in the end. Let’s see:

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Bears in the City launches We Bears Care, a non-profit subsidiary

By : Jamie Hyman
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We bears careBears in the City, an Orlando-based social and entertainment company, is expanding its charitable reach.

They officially launched We Bears Care, a 501(c)3 organization, April 13.

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Bear Bust celebrates 25 years

By : Ciara Varone
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Leather and chest hair and bears, oh my! Bears are coming out of hibernation and ready to celebrate for the 25th anniversary of Bear Bust, the longest-running event catering to bears in Florida.

After a hectic transition when the Bears of Central Florida dissolved and Parliament House took over the festivities three years ago, Bear Bust is once again trying to establish its status as the can’t-miss spectacle of the season for the bear community across the nation.

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Overheard in Tampa Bay: Bears giving a helping hand

By : Anonymous
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Off to The Villages
It was a packed crowd at the Gulfport Casino as women from throughout Tampa Bay gathered to celebrate the retirement of Suzanne Noe. Noe, the founder of ProSuzy.com, stepped away from the business two years ago but still handled the financials. Now, Noe is completely out of the business and will relocate to The Villages in Central Florida later this spring. Guests were invited to sign a large banner noting Noe’s retirement and a DJ provided dance music all night. ProSuzy.com is still active, but it is now under new ownership.

Tampa Pride already expected to expand
The rainbow flags from the inaugural Tampa Pride haven’t even been rolled up yet, but organizers are already talking about the 2016 celebration. Word is that the entertainment stage, which was in Centro Ybor this year, will move to Centennial Park just down 8th Avenue. For those familiar with the Santa Speedo Run, that’s where the start and finish line is for that charity run each December. One organizer also told Watermark that they expect to use more of 8th Avenue in 2016 to accommodate even more street vendors, since the festival sold out this year. Get details, as they come out, at TampaPride.org.

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VIDEO: Tom Goss’ Bears

By : Rick
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Some cute Bear-filled fun for your Tuesday afternoon.

2012 WAVE Awards Results: Orlando

By : Watermark
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FAVORITE LOCAL POLITICAN
1. Buddy Dyer, Orlando Mayor
2. Patty Sheehan, Orlando City Commissioner
3. Linda Stewart, former Orange County Commissioner

GREATEST STRAIGHT ALLY TO THE LOCAL LGBT COMMUNITY?
1. Linda Stewart
2. Mayor Buddy Dyer
3. Jack & Margo Dixon

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