donate a bicycleDo you remember when you bought a new bicycle for your daughter because she outgrew the old one?  But the old one wasn’t really that old, and there were so many good memories of it rolling down the hill as your daughter learned how to ride it.  Or remember when you went in search of THE BEST VIOLIN EVER for your son, only to find that he played it for one year and then decided to switch to band instead of orchestra?

What did you do with that old bicycle and violin?  I’ll bet you didn’t throw it away.  I’ll bet you gave it away to the next person that was searching for the BEST EVER.  Remember how good you felt when you knew you had made someone’s day?

Recently Plymouth Harbor helped make the day of many people by donating formerly used items that were being replaced during renovations and equipment upgrades.

The Boys & Girls Club was extremely happy to receive the ballet barres, exercise mats, and a treadmill from the former fitness room.

All Faiths Food Bank will receive the Dinex insulated tableware from the Smith Care Center when it is soon replaced.

Treviso Restaurant at The Ringling was grateful to receive an Alto-Shaam food warmer when we replaced it this year with new equipment.

Thanks to Chris Valuck, Rene Weder, and Danielle Menzies for identifying that these items had more life in them, finding them a new home, and making someone’s day!

2014_HeartWalk11Caring is a natural part of life at Plymouth Harbor.  When describing the caring bond that exists between residents and staff, we often speak of ‘the Plymouth Harbor Family’.  Many residents express their caring through their commitment to social issues and support of worthwhile initiatives in the Sarasota community and beyond.  Many of our dedicated and caring staff members are also actively involved in supporting local charities and causes.

Giving back . . . paying it forward . . . whatever you choose to call it, it’s a personal commitment to doing what you can to improve the lives of others.  What better way to express that individual commitment to community service than by residents and staff uniting together as the Plymouth Harbor Family in support of worthy causes?

Please join us in our first resident/staff united effort to “give back” by participating in the American Heart Association’s September 20 Heart Walk.  We all have a shared interest in the Heart Association’s mission to reduce disability and deaths caused by cardiovascular disease and stroke.  Cardiovascular disease is preventable, and with our help, the American Heart Association can provide educational and prevention programs to help more Americans control blood pressure, cholesterol, and receive appropriate cardiac care.

The Heart Walk takes place at Payne Park—Sarasota on Saturday, September 20, 2014 at 7:30 am.

If you would like to participate talk to one of our team captains: Jack Denison,  Bert Adams, Amanda Kirk, Fran Vancil or Chris Valuck.


Did you ever wonder what role Philanthropy plays in the whole scheme of things across the country?  We hear about the mega gifts from the Gates Foundation to end polio, or Warren Buffett’s bracket challenge, or how Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan were the top philanthropists in 2013, having made a gift valued at $970 million to a Silicon Valley charity…because this magnitude of giving makes the headline news.  But, important to know, and even surprising to discover, is how much is really donated to charities annually, where those donations go, and who made the gifts.

2013 By recipient Org

2013 Contributions by Source

Giving USA is published, researched, and written by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.  It is the annual report on philanthropy for giving across the country.  Giving USA 2014 has just been published, and we are pleased to share with you some of the highlights from the report.  As noted above, some of this information may be surprising to you…we indeed have an incredibly philanthropic country!  If you would like to see more data related to this report, please contact me at ext. 398 at the Plymouth Harbor Foundation office.


Total 2013 contributions to charitable organizations: 


2013 Increase in Total Giving over 2012:  4.4%

2013 Increase in Individual Giving over 2012:  4.2%

2013 Increase in Bequest Giving over 2012:  8.7%

Giving by Foundations increased by 5.7%

Giving by Corporations decreased by 1.9%

“Plymouth Harbor has been an important asset to Sarasota for almost 50 years now.  My sister’s first job was in the dining room as a server during her high school years.  I am pleased to be able to serve this wonderful organization, as it serves the residents of our community in many ways.”

Carla Plush Smith
Secretary, Plymouth Harbor Foundation Board of Trustees

Carla Smith, founder of Plush Smith PA, is a 25+ year Florida CPA who has an extensive background in tax, estate and personal financial planning.  Carla served on the Board of Trustees of Plymouth Harbor from 2005 to 2011 and served as Board Chair in 2010 and 2011.  A Sarasota native (unique in itself), Carla is a graduate of Leadership Sarasota and has served as an officer and director on numerous community boards.  She is a graduate of the University of Florida with a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, and a Master’s in Mental Health Counseling from the University of South Florida.  Carla has also earned designations as a CFP, PFS, CLU, and ChFC and has held her private pilot and nautical captain’s licenses.  She and her husband, Peter, enjoy three grown sons and a golden doodle, are members of the Sarasota Field Club, and enjoy boating, water skiing, and travelling.


Memorial Day is an important day in America, as it is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.  We are very grateful for what these soldiers did for our country, and for what they have done to make life better for us.

This Memorial Day, let us also remember those close friends and family we have loved and lost over the years.  We see more loss in the senior living industry than some others, as those we serve are perhaps a bit closer to the winter of life than the spring.  However, what strikes me as one of the most rewarding aspects of the retirement industry is that we are able to spend these important years with our residents and community members—those years when we are done proving to the world who we want to be, but accept and find comfort with who we are.  Wisdom, confidence, generosity, and warmth are qualities that describe most of those age 70+ whom I know and have come to respect and enjoy immensely.

This Memorial Day, say a little prayer for your loved ones who graced our world and left, knowing that each of us leaves the world a little better than it was when we arrived.  The Plymouth Harbor Foundation is grateful for the many gifts over the past year made in memory of the friends and family listed below.

Remembering with Gratitude
Zach Abuza
Barbara Argenti
Katherine Barbera
William Beckert
Gil Bosse
Gloria (Glo) Broderick
Sally Brown
Sheldon W. Brown
LuVerne Conway
Wendy Gremban
Lydia & Marco Hecht
Frank Heider
Gordon Jones
Ranier Josenhanss
Donald Kerr
Harley Koets
Jenny Lassen
Gena Magoon
Robert McNulty
Robert Merrill
Hope Mitchell
Betty Monroe
Jeanne Nunn
George Peters
Walter Schachtel
Dan Siesel
Tena Underwood
Tom Vandervalk
Elton & Penny Yasuna

 The Reverend Dr. John Whitney MacNeil

One special person we can all remember and be thankful for on Memorial Day is the Reverend Dr. John Whitney MacNeil, who would have celebrated his 103rd birthday on the 29th of this month.  Indeed, the Reverend Dr. MacNeil left this world a good deal better as a result of his visionary leadership.  The founder of Plymouth Harbor, the Reverend Dr. MacNeil and his small group of rainmakers set out in the early 1960s to build a retirement community of distinction, and in 1966 Plymouth Harbor opened its doors.  He was also the driving force behind New College.  As a man who some said would never reach the peak of his ambitions, he truly made a tremendous impact on Sarasota during his tenure here.  The Reverend Dr. MacNeil died in 1979, at the young age of 68.

“I am happy to serve on the Plymouth Harbor Foundation Board, as what we do is important to life at Plymouth Harbor.”

Bruce Crawford, Trustee
The Plymouth Harbor Foundation

Bruce is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Tuck School.  He has lived in Sarasota for 24 years, twenty of them at The Meadows, prior to moving to Plymouth Harbor.  While living at The Meadows, he served on the Board of its country club.  He has been involved with the Dartmouth and Ivy League clubs in Sarasota, where he served as president and program chair for each.  Bruce is a member of the Sahib Shrine.  He spent his career as vice president of sales and marketing for an insurance company.  His summers are spent in New Hampshire on Lake Winnipesaukee.


Thank you to everyone who generously supported the CD offering from Ted and Fran Rehl from his latest concert, Piano à la Carte.  In total over the last three concert CD offerings, we received support of over $3800.  This made it possible to move ahead on the replacement of the hammers on the Steinway.  By the time you read this, the work will be close to completion.

Tracy Lamb removing the old ‘hammers’ and preparing for their replacements



Photo Below: The old (darker) hammers are on the left and the new (lighter) hammers on the right

If you are not familiar with Ted Rehl and the story of the Plymouth Harbor concert grand piano, CLICK HERE for the story.

By Becky Pazkowski

Dennis and Priscilla Heindel Donor Advised Fund

For the past several years, Plymouth Harbor has been the fortunate recipient of a gift from the Dennis and Priscilla Heindel Advised Fund, administered by the Community Foundation of Sarasota County.  This year they directed their gift to the Smith Care Center.

Some of you may remember the Heindels, who moved into Plymouth Harbor in 1997.  Mr. Heindel passed away in 2006, and Mrs. Heindel moved to Albuquerque in 2011, to be closer to her children.  We have been in touch with Priscilla’s daughter, Kathy, who tells us that her mother is doing pretty well in an assisted living residence in Albuquerque.  We are very grateful and send thanks to Mrs. Heindel and her family for their continued support of life here at Plymouth Harbor.

Ted and Fran Rehl CD Offering

Many thanks to Ted and Fran Rehl for offering a CD of Ted’s March 28, 2014 concert entitled Piano a la Carte.  The Rehls have made the CD available for a donation of any amount to the Plymouth Harbor Foundation to support Improvement of the Arts.  The concert includes selections from Liszt, Schubert, Brahms, Chopin, Scarlatti, Ravel, and Bartók.

In this second year of offering Foundation Forums, we have aligned the content of the Forums with the initiatives of the Foundation to bring you educational, intellectually stimulating subject matter.  This year we are delighted to offer a New College of Florida faculty series, two of which you heard in January and March, the third and final being at the end of this month, presented by Gordon Bauer, Ph.D., professor of psychology, entitled “The Sensory World of the Manatee.”

We will also offer a series on brain health and dementia.   Alan Grindal, M.D., a neurologist in Sarasota, will talk about the clinical aspects of dementia and brain health.  Teepa Snow, a nationally-known dementia expert who trains and consults for healthcare professionals and families, will present on particular behaviors and the best care-giving techniques for persons with dementia.  We hope to offer a third Forum to complete that series on the research that is being done  on diagnosing dementia-related illnesses and the best treatments.

Finally, we hope to bring you a series that speaks to our roots in Sarasota, the life-changing impact that philanthropy has had on our mission, and how the love of giving has shaped the lives of Sarasota philanthropists over the decades.

We are excited about our 2014 Forums and we hope you will be, too.

And for our next Forum, we hope to see you there !

The Sensory World of the Manatee

Gordon Bauer, Ph.D.
Peg Scripps Buzzelli
Professor of Psychology
New College of Florida

Wednesday, April 30 at 4 pm
Pilgrim Hall

Professor Bauer will present the findings of recent investigations into the sensory world of the manatee, which reveal a unique constellation of attributes important to the development of effective conservation recommendations.

 “Moving to Plymouth Harbor was a gift my parents gave to me.  Serving on the Foundation Board is my gift back to them.”  –

Cade Sibley
Trustee, Plymouth Harbor Foundation Board of Trustees

For nearly two decades Cade Sibley has been visiting Plymouth Harbor, where her father Jack Denison has lived since 1996.  Teasley, Cade’s mom and Jack’s late wife, lived here with Jack until she passed away in 2006.

A resident of Longboat Key, Cade moved here in 2010 with her husband, Whit from Denver, Colorado.  For nearly 30 years in Denver, she designed and implemented advanced estate, business-transfer, and investment-planning strategies for affluent business owners, executives, and those with inherited wealth.

Cade was a longtime member of several of Lincoln Financial Group’s most prestigious honors societies, and served as Vice Chair of the Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center Board for The Denver Foundation, and on the Denver Arthritis Foundation Board.  Cade and her husband are both members of the Bird Key Yacht Club where they are serving on several committees and are active with the club’s cruising fleet.