This is a text only version of the newsletter. Although pictures in the newsletter are described, they are not depicted in this version. To view the newsletter format with pictures, please go to the Illuminations Newsletter PDF format (Winter, 2013).

The Illuminations Newsletter is also available in hard copy formats by request. If you would like to request a printed copy in Braille or large print, please contact us at or 561-586-5600.

We hope that you enjoy reading the newsletter!




Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches logo with the outline of a Lighthouse centered in a blue circle.

Illuminations Newsletter Volume 13, Issue 1 - Winter, 2013

Happy New Year! Happy Valentine's Day
Illuminations Newsletter
Volume 13, Issue 1 Winter, 2013



The Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches celebrated the holidays on December 15, 2012 with our youth participants who are blind or visually impaired and their families. Participants played accessible games, including pin the nose on the snowman, jingle bell box, marshmallow toss, ornament table hockey, and much more! Vicki Wolf, a parent, wrote: “Thank you so much for having the Christmas party. All four of my children look forward to this event for weeks. They love spending time with other children with like disabilities. They feel part of a group and don't feel like the only one in the class that is different. They find strength and inspiration from the party participants. They loved their gifts too! They were perfect for each child.

Image of participants at the youth holiday party on December 15, 2012.

Holiday Party Continued on page 2


  1. LITE Club Holiday Party
  2. LITE Club and Thank you letter from an elementary school
  3. Music for the Mind
  4. Anne’s Story
  5. Enhanced Vision Event and News
  6. Focus Group
  7. Book Club, Margie and Florida Reading
  8. Recycling Update, Board

Page 2:

Holiday Party cont. from p. 1 

The Lighthouse would like to thank the following people and organizations for their donations to help make the holiday party such an amazing event:


Wounded Warriors of South Florida


West Palm Beach Lions Club


Society of the Palm Beaches Southern Dames of America


Donté Mickens


Belle Glades Lions Club

Gingerbread houses made by participans at the youth holiday party.Image of gingerbread houses made by participans at the youth holiday party.


LITE Club Youth Events

March 19, 2013
“Music for the Mind” Event
See page 3 for details. More information will be coming soon for LITE Club participants!


April 13, 2013 at 1:30 p.m.
Spellbound Dance Company

Location: Kravis Center


Summer Camp 2013

Tentative dates are: July 15 through July 19, 2013 with additional field trips tentatively scheduled for July 26, August 2 and August 9, 2013.


Letter to Rosemary Mulero from an elementary school where she presented information about people with visual impairments:


"We learned so many new things about blind people from you. It was interesting to find out that some people need a guide dog to help them. We didn't know about the special walking cane that blind people use. It was interesting that there is a special way to fold the bills so that blind people know the difference between one dollar, five dollars, and ten dollars. We liked learning about all the different gadgets that the blind people can use. We really appreciate that you took the time to come to our class to show us so many new things about blind people. By using the different goggles, we now know that some blind people can see a little bit. We didn't know that some people can see big letters and some light. Thank you for coming. We hope that you will visit us again. Sincerely, Mrs. Berlin and Mrs. Hartman’s classes.”

Page 3:

Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches and Kretzer Piano Presents...
David Crohan's "Chopin & Showtunes"

David Crohan's "Chopin & Showtunes"

Logos displayed for Music for the Mind and Kretzer Piano. An image of David Crohan with his poodle guide dog behind the wheel of a luxury automobile.

"Music for the Mind"              Tuesday, March 19, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
Harriet Himmel Theater in CityPlace, West Palm Beach, FL

All money received will benefit the Lighthouse's LITE Club (Learning Independence Through Experience). LITE Club offers year-round activities for children who are blind or visually impaired.

David Crohan presents “Chopin and Showtunes.” Blind since birth, David began playing the piano at age three and holds two Master of Arts degrees and an Artist’s Diploma from the New England Conservatory of Music. Crohan’s exceptional execution of all styles of music, coupled with a passion that fills the room, captivates every audience. A wizard at the piano, he entertains with vigor, imagination and humor.

Kretzer Piano presents “Music for the Mind” concert series the third Tuesday of every month at 7:00 p.m. in the Harriet Himmel Theater at CityPlace. The concerts have featured 8300 young artists and raised over $290,000 for music education since the series began in 2002. This month’s concert will benefit the Lighthouse.

Tickets purchased in advance are $25.00 for adults

and $5.00 for students. Tickets purchased at the door will be $30.00.

For tickets, log on to

or call 561-586-5600 (ext. 3234)


Page 4:


Anne’s Story

A few years ago, I was at our local shopping mall with my husband. We were in a department store and he took me to the ladies shoes section. He went to another department and was going to meet me back at the shoe department.


The shoe department was located by doors that led outside. I was tapping around with my white cane touching the shoes and enjoying the wonderful smells of leather. Suddenly I heard laughter and comments coming from a group of teenagers headed toward the doors. Many people do not realize there are varying degrees of blindness and that white cane did not mean I might be in total darkness. Well I am not and I could make out their shapes. The boys in the group were making jokes about blind people as they walked by me. A girl in the group said “You should not make fun of the misfortunate.”


Those were the last words I heard before they hurried out the door. I remember being in total shock, reeling from the experience. I said to myself, “Misfortunate, me misfortunate?” I spent a lot of time thinking about this and it made me evaluate my entire life as a blind woman.

Here are the facts about myself that I pondered. I am not defined by my blindness. I am a self-confident, independent woman, wife and mother. I am self-employed and very involved in volunteer work around my county. I am greatly loved by my family and encouraged by my community. I have had excellent instruction in mobility, independent living and technology to realize self-improvement functioning as a blind woman.

I have several hobbies including, but not limited to kayaking, hiking, swimming and reading. So if you ask me, “Am I misfortunate?” This will be my answer: “Why yes, I truly am Mrs. Fortunate.”

I am truly grateful for those teenagers that day in the mall. They will never know the gift that they gave me. They are the ones that are misfortunate never really allowing themselves to know that someone with a visual impairment can be as fortunate as I am.

Page 5:

Enhanced Vision Low Vision Technology
Open House

Please join us on Friday, April 19, 2013 at the Lighthouse from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. for a free event featuring hands-on demonstrations of the latest technology available for people with low vision. Call to RSVP: (800) 440-9476 ext. 2231 or email For more information, please visit: Image of a Divinci and a Merlin with the Enhanced Vision Logo.

In The News


The Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches was one of 34 non-profit organizations who participated in the FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge on January 26, 2013. Our sponsors raised $16,000.00 for the Lighthouse! For further information, please visit:


Staci Bell, Lighthouse participant, was selected as one of the recipients for the Palm Beach Post’s “Season to Share.” Please read the article for details. Congratulations, Staci!


Page 6:

Focus Group

Focus Group provides socialization opportunities, educational speakers and other activities. Please RSVP








Upcoming Meetings scheduled at the Lighthouse in West Palm Beach from 10:00 a.m. to noon:


February 1, 2013 at the Lighthouse: Elder Helpline Information and guidance on resources available to seniors and their caregivers. Peter Jarrett will also present information on “Mindfulness for the Visually Impaired.”

March 1, 2013 at the Lighthouse: Alzheimer’s Community Care will provide Information about dementia and services offered for patients and caregivers.

April 13, 2013: Spellbound Dance Company at 1:30 p.m. at the Kravis Center

Highlights from last quarter:

On November 2, 2012, Focus Group participants celebrated Thanksgiving at the Lighthouse.  Volunteers from the Braille Club prepared a feast of turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, green beans, rice, cranberry sauce and desserts.  In the words of one of the participants, “The food was great, but the fellowship was even better!”  A special thank you to Larry McDowell for his help with coordinating the event and all the volunteers who cooked, served, and cleaned. On December 7, 2012, Focus Group celebrated the Holidays with chili, corn bread, music, games and a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus! 

Pictured in image: Santa and Mrs. Claus with Al and Brooke Evans.


Focus Group will also be meeting in Stuart on the following dates from 10 a.m. to noon: February 8, April 12, June 14, August 9, October 11, and December 13. Join us from for coffee and conversation!  

Stuart meeting location Gulfstream Goodwill
1101 NW 21st St.
 Stuart, FL  34994 (off US Hwy. 1)


Page 7:

Welcome to Margie Ribeiro!
Please join us in welcoming a new addition to our staff,
Margie Ribeiro, who is our new Orientation & Mobility Instructor.  Margie has over 15 years of experience working with people who are blind or visually impaired. Margie started on January 21, 2013.

Book Club Update



The Book Club meets on the third Friday of each month. Digital books are distributed at each meeting. Please come to the meetings, even if you haven't read or finished the book. Our discussions can get quite lively.  Bring a friend, the more the merrier! Bring your lunch, we are very informal!       

Upcoming Schedule for Book Club: For February 15th our selection is “Sam's Letters to Jennifer” by James Patterson. The selection for March 15th is “Litigator's” by John Grisham. We try to choose selections that can be downloaded from BARD or you may get a digital copy from the Talking Library 561-649-5500. We welcome all. For more information: 561-586-5600.


Florida Reading and Vision Technology Inc. presented their products on January 18, 2013 at the Lighthouse. Lesa Kretschmer, escorted by guide dog in training, Laslo, demonstrated a variety of low vision and blindness products including: the BrailleNote, Pebble Mini, Smartlux, Liberty Scholar, Candy Grip, Braille Coach, Divinci, ID Mate, ReadIt Wand, and Visio Book. For additional information, please contact Florida Reading at 800-981-5110 or via email at Logo with a beach scene in clipart with a palm tree and the words Florida Reading and Vision Technology, Inc. (FRAVTI)  with an eye in the middle of the A in FRAVTI.


Page 8:


The Florida a State of Vision” license plate helps blind and visually impaired residents in our 5-county area. Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches will receive $25.00 for each tag purchased in Palm Beach, Martin, Indian River, St. Lucie and Okeechobee counties. Contact the tax collectors office to purchase. Image of a sample license plate with the words "A State of Vision" displayed.


Lighthouse Recycling Projects Continue

Please remember to donate your used ink cartridges, cell phones, MP3 Players, iPods, digital cameras and Laptop computers. This program will help us acquire FREE technology and/or money to support our programs and services.

Thank you!

Lighthouse Board of Directors

President and CEO, Marvin A. Tanck

• Stanley D. Klett, Jr., Chairman

• John R. Banister, Vice Chairman

• Ronald F. Albano, Secretary

• David Cano, MD

• April Jasper, OD, FAAO

• Mark Michels, MD, FACS

• Allen Preston

• Maurice Jacobson

• E. William Quinette, Ed.D.

• Anthony Jordan

• Donté Mickens, CPCU, ARe, CRM

Illuminations is a publication from the Lighthouse for the Blind of the Palm Beaches. It is edited by Rachael Trinkowsky and Mary Allen.