By Shellie Miller-Farrugia
The Spectator Magazine
In all of our 19 years, this last one has been especially memorable. If I had to list all the reasons, it would take up the entire magazine. If you have a notepad nearby, I invite you to write down five positive things that impacted your life in 2020.
The Spectator started in the fall of 2001, immediately after the tragedy of 9/11. Our first magazine was printed in March 2002. Our intention was to connect neighbors who didn’t know each other, and may never have the opportunity. Furthermore, our goal was to foster an openness between athletes, families, and businesses in our communities. 19 years later, we say, “mission accomplished!“ and we aren’t done yet!
It’s been an amazing journey as we’ve heard so many personal stories of triumph over adversity. We’ve seen families devastated by unimaginable loss, that come back later with inspiring accounts of new goals and intentions. A couple who lost their only son to leukemia was featured in our very first magazine, and went on to adopt and raise several more children. Our friends Cassie & Shannon McGovern lost their precious daughter, Em, to accidental drowning, but continued on while raising awareness, funds, and being active advocates for water safety education.
We were reporting on your little one’s first soccer game when she ran toward the wrong goal while sideline encouragement and cheers had her smiling the whole way! We’ve been there when children from opposite teams shared high-fives after the game, everyone shared orange slices, parents arranged play dates, and great fun was had by all!
The Spectator was instrumental in producing amazing events, including the Youth Sports Challenge, which saw hundreds of kids having a super-fun day while garnering a generous donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Every October our magazine is dedicated to fostering awareness of and eradicating breast cancer.
We met lovely people at the parks, in the gyms, and even while we were out shopping. Some of the families we’ve featured have become lifelong friends of ours; sharing their insights, passions, and sage advice. Many have told us that their feature was seen by friends they hadn’t seen in many years… Whom they were able to gladly reconnect with! It’s because of you, dear reader, that we’ve been able to create happy circumstances and mail this magazine every month for 19 years.
As Coral Springs and Parkland have “grown-up,” most of the changes have been positive. We’ve got terrific diversity when it comes to mixing our food cultures, lifestyles, and community activities. Enjoying the farmers market, various sports, and outdoor events are just small snippets of the plethora of fun each of us can enjoy while living in our quaint corner of Broward. We are so excited to call Coral Springs and Parkland our home! Thanks for
making the last 19 years so special!