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Welcome to the WBF Community Calendar. This page is designed to post announcements of events around the Polk County area.

The announcements are listed according to the date of the event, current events at the top.

Click here, If your club or organization would like to post an announcement on this page.









Bartow Farmer's and Community Market, November 20

Everyone is invited to the Main Street Bartow Farmers and Community Market is held every Wednesday at Fort Blount Park, at the corner of Main Street and Broadway Avenue in downtown Bartow, from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm.

Vendors include produce, local honey, jams, jellys, brittle, six flavors of jerky, plants, blended teas, handmade candles, skin care products and soaps, specialty cheeses, dips and soup mixes and crafts. The park is also a beautiful spot for a leisurely lunch, and food vendors offer hamburgers, hotdogs, pulled chicken sandwiches, kettle korn, and much more!

Main Street Bartow continues to seek vendors offering top quality fresh products and artisan crafts. The vendor fee for a 10 x 10 space is just $10.00. For a Farmers Market Vendor Form, contact Main Street Bartow at 863-519-0508.

Make your plans to visit the Main Street Bartow Farmers and Community Market, Wednesday at the corner of Main Street and Broadway Avenue in downtown Bartow, from 10 to 2!




Lakeland Downtown Farmers Curb Market, November 23

Lakeland Downtown Farmers Curb Market The Downtown Farmers Curb Market is a key component of a vibrant, diverse and exciting Downtown. It is designed to serve and bring together all segments of our community. It is a positive force in bringing people Downtown to purchase fresh produce, plants and local handcrafted items. The 11-month Market (closed in August) is a showcase for the talents and the work of local artisans and local growers. The Downtown Farmers Curb Market is a project of the Lakeland Downtown Development Authority (LDDA).

The 11-month market (closed in August) is a showcase for the talents and the work of local artisans and local growers, can be found at 200 North Kentucky Avenue in Lakeland from 8am to 2pm.





Winter Haven Saturday Market, November 23

Free Community Event / Pet Friendly / Fresh Farmers Saturday Market in beautiful Central Park downtown Winter Haven. Open twice per month from 9am-3pm. Free Parking!

Arts, crafts, home made goods, raw local honey, wood furniture, antiques/ vintage, food trucks, kettle corn, live music, and much more for everyone.

For more information about the markets, season dates, and vendor applications please visit: www.WinterHavenSaturdayMarkets.com.






Join VISTE for our 23rd Annual Thanksgiving Meal Delivery event on Wednesday, November 27! This year, volunteers will be needed to deliver over 1,800 meals to our local seniors. The Thanksgiving Meal delivery brings together volunteers and clients in a special way and is a great way to kick off the holiday season.

Here's what to do: On the day before Thanksgiving, Wednesday November 27, go to entrance #2 on the northwest side of the RP Funding Center in Lakeland. We will begin distributing the meals at 3, and will provide the address to a client's home. That's it! Pick up and you're on your way! No registration is needed. Children are welcomed and encouraged. We are so grateful for the community support!

Volunteers in Service to the Elderly, is a community-based, non-profit organization serving Lakeland, Bartow, Mulberry and Fort Meade. Celebrating 35 years, the goal of VISTE is to enable frail elderly persons to continue living independently and safely in their own home. Visit our website, viste.org for more information.




The Junior League of Greater Lakeland FL and the City of Lakeland are proud to host the 39th annual Lakeland Christmas Parade! The parade will take place in Downtown Lakeland on Thursday, December 5th, 2019.

The theme of this year’s parade is “The Joy of Giving.” This theme was inspired by the continuous generosity and love displayed within our community as touted by the nickname, “the Giving City.”

Awards will be presented to outstanding participants at the Lakeland City Commission meeting in December.

Email christmasparade@jlgl.org for more info, or visit lakelandgov.net/christmasparade.




It's the annual Havendale Christmas Parade! The time of year when the City of Winter Haven and the City of Auburndale come together to bring you joy, festivities, and floats! This parade will officially start at 7:00 PM from the Spring Haven Retirement Center in Winter Haven and follow Havendale Boulevard to Walgreens in Auburndale.






Kick off the Holiday season at Polk County Parks & Recreation's Jingle Bell Rock Party. This family friendly event will feature Karaoke dance party, light refreshments, hot chocolate bar, and a Santa's Workshop.
December 6
6:30 P.M.- Family Ginger Bread House Making Contest
 (first come, first serve) Prizes for winners.
Cost: Free Admission
Location: Wabash Community Center (1230 Southern Ave., Lakeland)
For more information, please call the Wabash Community Center (863) 284-4223.






Polk County Parks & Recreation in partnership with GFive Motorsports presents Dirt-Cember!

For Free Admission- Bring 1 pre-package toy per person. All toys must be wrapped. We will not accept used toys.

Toy donation will benefit Heartland for Children Rudolf Round Up Holiday Toy Drive. https://heartlandforchildren.org/rudolph

All park rules and regulations apply! For more information, please visit our website at www.bonevalleyatv.com.




Snowfest 2019

There is SNOW in the forecast for downtown Lakeland! Join us for the 39th Annual Snowfest on December 7th in Munn Park on from 10 am - 2 pm. There will be an artisan craft fair, inflatables, Snow Mountains, and Santa.
Saturday, December 7 at 10 am – 2 pm
210 East Main Street in Lakeland
Hosted by City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation





Main Street Winter Haven is THRILLED to announce our 31st Annual Carols in the Park presented by Citizens Bank and Trust!

For over thirty years, artisans, specialty food vendors, and local choral groups have gathered in Downtown Winter Haven’s Central Park to kick off the holiday season. This event has become a tradition for multiple generations, with a special Candy Cane Corner for children of all ages! Kids will enjoy FREE pictures with Santa Claus, a take-home holiday craft, and a bounce house…among other fun activities! Bring your families and enjoy the sound of local school and community choral groups ALL DAY LONG!

Sponsorships are available, please contact us at carolsintheparkwh@gmail.com if interested in learning more about our opportunities to market and network in the community through sponsorship of Carols in the Park!

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 863.295.9422, or email us at carolsintheparkwh@gmail.com.











On December 13th, Downtown Lake Wales will become a winter wonderland! Main Street Lake Wales invites you to ring in the season with a holiday celebration in historic downtown Lake Wales at the 9th annual Make It Magical holiday event. Enjoy shopping in our sweet downtown and strolling through local shops, art and craft vendors with plenty of holiday decor and live music. Free admission treats guests to crafts, activities, a visit with Santa and SNOW!! 5:00-8:00 p.m. for event!
















Enjoy the sounds of the season at the Polk County Parks & Recreation's Christmas Notes event. This free holiday family event will feature live holiday music, photos with Santa, light refreshments, Santa's Workshop, polar express train ride and more!
December 14 5pm - 8pm
Homeland Heritage Park
249 Church Avenue
Homeland
For more information, please call Polk County Parks & Recreation's Administration office at (863) 534-6911






A fun festive 5k! Proceeds from the event go to the perpetual care fund for the 3 Parks Trail.

Join us Saturday, December 14th for the 5th Holly Jolly Jingle Bell Jog 5k and Kids' Reindeer Dash, finishing at the Cleveland Heights Golf Course!

The Jingle Bell Jog is a fun festive event including a chipped 5k. Runners and walkers of all levels are welcome. (Strollers are asked to start towards the back.) A kids' fun run - The Reindeer Dash - is another way for the little ones to jingle all the way.

For more information and registration link visit: www.JBJog.com.
5k starts at 7:30am - on Buckingham just north of Golf Course
Reindeer Dash will start at approximately 8:15am - adjacent to the 5k finish.


Parking will be available in the grass lot north of Common Ground Playground.

Following the race we will have an athletes' village with a stage, dj, SANTA!, and opportunities to hear about great City programs.






Jingle Bark is a pet friendly festival held at Northeast Regional Park, Davenport. This festival will feature vendors, food vendor, pet photos with Santa, contests and much more.

Free admission for all humans and furry friends. **Pets must be on a leash or in a carrier*

For more information, please call 863-344-2547
Schedule of Events:
10:30 a.m. - Best Human Animal Sound
11 a.m. - Best Holiday Costume Contest
Noon- Pie Eating contest for dogs (large & Small dog contest)
1 p.m. - Ugly Sweater Contest
1:15 p.m. - Best Trick Contest
Come bring your furry friends for HOWLiday fun and treats.















Winter Haven Saturday Market, December 14

Free Community Event / Pet Friendly / Fresh Farmers Saturday Market in beautiful Central Park downtown Winter Haven. Open twice per month from 9am-3pm. Free Parking!

Arts, crafts, home made goods, raw local honey, wood furniture, antiques/ vintage, food trucks, kettle corn, live music, and much more for everyone.

For more information about the markets, season dates, and vendor applications please visit: www.WinterHavenSaturdayMarkets.com.






Back by popular demand! The Christmas Parade in Haines City returns this year on Friday, December 20th at 7PM. Join us for an exciting, family-friendly, holiday themed parade through Haines City. Santa Clause will be there too!
Parade Route: 
Starting on Live Oak Avenue at C Street
Right onto Peninsular Drive
Left onto Peninsular Street/1st Street
Right onto Ledwith Avenue 
Right onto 6th Street
Ends at 6th Street and Wood Avenue
 (Lake Eva Aquatic Center parking lot)





Winter Haven Saturday Market, December 21

Free Community Event / Pet Friendly / Fresh Farmers Saturday Market in beautiful Central Park downtown Winter Haven. Open twice per month from 9am-3pm. Free Parking!

Arts, crafts, home made goods, raw local honey, wood furniture, antiques/ vintage, food trucks, kettle corn, live music, and much more for everyone.

For more information about the markets, season dates, and vendor applications please visit: www.WinterHavenSaturdayMarkets.com.




Start: 7:30AM for both races

Half Marathon Details and Awards

Entries: Unlimited!!!

Long sleeve Dry-Fit shirts to all who register for the Half.

Half marathon finishers ONLY: Annual Custom Signature Mug from Deneen Pottery. www.DeneenPottery.com

Custom Awards to Top Male and Female overall, Masters and Grand Masters. Top 3 in each age group Male/Female 19 and under, then 10 year increments, ending with 70 & above.

Trail 5K Details/Awards

Start: 7:30AM : 5k Trail Run

Unlimited participants. Short-sleeve Dry-Fit shirts to all who register.

Custom Awards to Top Male and Female overall, Masters and Grand Masters. Top 3 in each age group Male/Female 9 and under, then 10 year increments, ending with 70 & above.
Packet Pick-up:

Early Packet pick up and Race Registration
at Fitniche Lakeland, 1/31/2019 3pm to 7pm

Race Day packet pick up and 
registration 2/1/2020 6:15am till 7:15am


Half Registration Costs:

Now–Nov 30: $50
Dec 1-Dec 31: $60
Jan 1- Feb 1: $75

Race Day morning up at finish line before 7:10a: $75


Trail 5k Registration Costs:

Now–Nov 30: $25
Dec 1-Dec 31: $30
Jan 1- Feb 1: $35

Race Day morning up at finish line before 7:10a: $35












The Annual Smoke on the Water BBQ Competition is hosted each February and is a Florida BBQ Association State Championship. Funds raised benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Polk County.

More than 80 teams from across the country will compete for the Florida State Grand Champion title. Unique entertainment includes; a Music Festival, an aerial flyover, and awards for the best chicken, ribs, pork, and brisket, which will be announced at 5:30 p.m on Saturday.

Start the party early and come for BBQ on Friday, February 7th at 6:00pm. The official festivities kick off at 10:00 am on Saturday, February 8th with the national anthem.

Funds raised will benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of Polk County.

TEAM REGISTRATION IS OPEN NOW!! http://bgclubpolk.org/smoke.aspx






Legend has it, Sasquatch has been lurking in the woods at Polk County Parks & Recreation’s Bone Valley ATV Park. This mysterious creature has set up traps full of color to distract all humans from finding him (or her)! It is up to us to find Sasquatch and unmask the traps on the beautiful trails of Bone Valley ATV Park.

Participants will enjoy a fun and adventurous run that features 3.1 miles of uneven terrain and blasts of color along the way. This event will be timed by FITniche and will end with an awards ceremony for various age groups. <.pre> 7AM- Check- In Begins 9AM- Race Begins Awards Ceremony will begin after the last runner has crossed the finish line. Pre-Registration: $25 per person Includes swag bag and race T-shirt Online Only: http://bit.ly/20ColorTheTrail5k Day of Event Registration: $30 per person (credit only) Swag bag and t-shirt - while supplies last











49th annual Fine Art Festival brought to you by Bartow Art Guild, Greater Bartow Chamber, and Main Street Bartow.

Over 100 artists from all over the country. Student art, kids activities, Bloomin Bike Ride, Bartow Garden Club Flower Show, Car Show (Saturday Only), live entertainment with a free 3 hr concert Sunday at noon. Food trucks, local restaurants...lots to see and do.

To apply as an artist, go to this link https://www.zapplication.org/event-info.php?ID=7896






CommunityFest 2020, presented by Citizens Bank & Trust, will take place on Saturday, March 7th from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in Downtown Winter Haven! Get ready for a day full of fun, games, entertainment, balloons, face painting and so much more! Did I mention it's all FREE? We hope to see you there!






Swan Derby is a unique and premier community event, held every year to bring recognition and awareness to Lakeland Volunteers In Medicine and the mission it serves. This is a free community event, featuring swan boat races, local food vendors, youth activities, a derby hat contest, live music, on the main stage and a fantastic fireworks show to cap off the evening. Bring your chairs and join us on the promenade, Friday, April 24.




City of Bartow Customers Urged to Sign Up for Emergency Notification System

Bartow Parks & Recreation Bartow citizens are urged to sign up for a new notification service from the city to keep citizens informed in emergencies.

The new phone and email service will provide customers with important information in a timely manner. Customers can sign up through the city’s website www.cityofbartow.net or by calling the city’s customers service department at 863-534-0188.

The system will be used for emergency alerts, community alerts and other urgent communication. For example, it is expected to be used to share information on major power outages or significant weather events. The messages will be important information that needs to be communicated quickly and widely for public safety.

Frank Canovaca, the city’s director of information technology, said customers need to opt in to the system by providing their contact information. “If your phone number is not in the database, we will not be able to contact you,” he said.

All individuals and businesses are urged to log on to www.cityofbartow.net and follow the link to the “SmartNotice Community Notification Enrollment” page. Each customer will want to enter their first and last name, street address (physical address, no P.O. boxes), city, state, zip code, primary phone number and any additional phone numbers.

The easy way to sign up is with a text. Just text BartowAlerts as one word to the number 99411. Again, text BartowAlerts as one word to 99411.

“SmartNotice allows geographically based message delivery,” Canovaca said, “which means street addresses are required to ensure notification calls are received by the proper individuals in a given situation. The system works for cell phones, but we need to have an associated street address to provide geographic-relevant messages.”

SmartNotice gives those who want to be included an easy and secure method for inputting information. The data collected will only be used for notification purposes.

Questions about the new emergency notification system should be directed to Bartow Customer Service at 863-534-0188.





Monitor and protect your personal information by registering for Property Alert.

Once you register for the free service, you’ll receive email alerts when documents are filed in our office using your name and/or property information. Find out more at Polk County Property Alert.




Meals on Wheels Volunteers

Meals on Wheels needs drivers to deliver hot meals to seniors throughout Polk County. Kitchen volunteers are also needed to help package the meals.

The Meals on Wheels program delivers hot meals to approximately 315 homebound residents.

Service areas include Winter Haven, Lakeland, Auburndale, Haines City and Davenport. Volunteers may choose to work from one to five days a week. For information call 863-299-1616 or visit www.mealsonwheelspolk.com or facebook.com/mealsonwheelspolk.




Visit L.B. Brown House




VISTE's Volunteers

Volunteers in Service to the Elderly is a community-based non-profit organization that was started Lakeland since 1983.

VISTE’s primary goal is to help frail senior citizens continue living independently and safely in their own home. VISTE is a United Way agency.

VISTE, which is a United Way agency, works with schools, churches, civic groups, local corporations and individuals.

To volunteer, attend one of VISTE’s monthly orientations. A volunteer application can be found at http://viste.org/become-a-viste-volunteer.

For more information, call 863-284-0828 or email info@viste.org.




Heartland Crimestoppers









L.E.A.P - Emergency Notification Program for Residents Age 55 and up

Do you have a loved one, age 55 or older, living independently in Lakeland? Encourage them to sign up for Lakeland’s Elderly Assistance Program (LEAP) to ensure you are notified in case of an emergency that involves first responders. This voluntary program is designed to provide a quick resource to public safety entities so they can easily contact family members in case of an emergency.

How Does the Program Work?

First, complete a registration form. Forms are available online at http://www.lakelandgov.net/lpd/special-svcs/community-services-section/leap-lakeland-elderly-assistance-program or you can call the number below and request a form be mailed to you. Registration will include requests for emergency contact information. A member from the Lakeland Police Department will enter the information into the LEAP database, making the information accessible only to first responders. Once the resident is registered they will receive a small sticker to be placed in a visible location on the front window or door with a unique identification number. The sticker will immediately notify first responders to check the LEAP database for additional information should an emergency situation occur.

If you have additional questions regarding the LEAP program, call 863.834.6912.




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SPCA of Lakeland

SPCA of Polk County Each month SPCA Florida provides over 200 pets in the community with supplemental pet food and supplies through its Ani-meals program. Due to increasing community need, SPCA Florida is asking the community for donations of cat food and litter. Donations can be dropped off at 5850 Brannen Road South in Lakeland, Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. or Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit spcaflorida.org or call (863) 646-SPCA for more information.

The SPCA, Inc. in Lakeland is in desperate need of cat litter. Any type of cat litter is welcome. Donations can be dropped off from 11am to 5pm, Monday through Saturday. For more information, call the SPCA at 863-646-7722.




New Hazardous Waste Collection Program Available for Small Businesses

Polk County Polk County businesses that produce less than 220 pounds of hazardous waste per month can properly dispose/recycle it the third Wednesday of each month by appointment-only at the North Central Landfill’s Household Hazardous Waste Facility. The first collection day will take place February 16.

Quotes will be based on the quantity and types of waste materials to be disposed/recycled. Participants must complete a registration form and inventory sheet and may need an onsite inspection prior to participating. Waste materials being collected include: paint, solvents, waste ink, fluorescent lamps, used oil, antifreeze and other hazardous waste.

For more information, paperwork and appointment schduling, visit www.polk-county.net or Contact Andrea at (863) 284-4319 ext.203, andreastermer@polk-county.net.

The North Central Landfill is located at 5 Environmental Loop South in Winter Haven.




Viewing of Adoptable Pets

pull over to the CyberStation The Polk County Sheriff's Office, in an effort to help adopt out as many eligible animals as possible, has added a new feature to their website www.polksheriff.org. The link, located at the bottom of the home page, is titled "Animal Services Section".

The "Pet Harbor" is a brand-new feature offering viewers a searchable database of adoptable pets, in and out of Polk County. Customers can select whether they are looking for a dog or a cat, an age range, a gender and even a size. Photos of the animals are available at the click of a button, and are updated on a routine and timely basis.

The section also has a wealth of information such as laws, rabies, spaying/neutering and is very user-friendly.




American Red Cross

American Red Cross The Polk County Chapter of the American Red Cross is offering Community Disaster Education presentations to the community, free of charge. The Community Disaster Education program teaches people how to prepare themselves, their families and their property for disasters, such as hurricanes or tornadoes.

For more information about the program, or to schedule a presentation, call the Polk County Chapter at 863-294-5941.




Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts Adult volunteers can have just as much fun as the Girl Scouts they serve. Adults can volunteer as troop leaders and advisors so that they work with the same girls all year. Volunteer opportunitites also exist for guest speakers, teachers for specific skills and projects, advisory committee members, and a wide range of other volunteer services to girls and Girl Scouting.

To find out more about becoming a Girl Scout volunteer, contact the Lakeland office at 863.688.7648.




Household Hazardous Waste Collection

Polk County The Polk County Board of County Commissioners' Hazardous Waste Section collects household hazardous waste Monday through Friday 7:45a to 3:45p, and Saturday 8a to 5p at the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility. The facility is located on SR 540 at the North Central Landfill, four miles east of highway 98.

At the facility, the county accepts household paints. aerosol cans, motor oil, gasoline, antifreeze, kerosene, diesel fuel, pool chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, cleaners, polishes, paint strippers, paint thinner, fluorescent tubes, mercury containing devices, household and auto batteries.

All household items are accepted during these times except biohazardous materials, i.e. hypodermic needles or lancets. No explosives or radioactive wastes will be accepted at this location. No waster generated by businesses will be accepted for disposal. For more information call the Polk County Household Hazardous Waste Section at 863-499-2771 or 863-499-2689.




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