Vin's People: Manatee senior Florida's Teen Miss Hometown USA

November 16, 2012 

A bow for Hayley Hawkinberry, newly crowned as Florida's Teen Miss Hometown USA.

The 17-year-old Manatee High senior was selected last Sunday in Orlando by Florida's Hometown U.S.A. Program, Inc., an educational initiative to teach youth the importance of volunteerism.

Hayley was chosen out of a field of 16-to-18-year-olds and also sang "Orange Colored Sky" to win the talent category.

Her reign begins in December and will include community service and advocacy for issues such as AIDS prevention, cyber-bullying, domestic violence and homelessness.

Her goal is to emulate Ericka Dunlap, who won two program divisions years ago and went onto become Miss Florida and then Miss America 2004.

n Big ups to Denise and Jeff Smith. Daughter Jen and son-in-law Keith Young became parents to twin boys, Wyatt and Colby in Charlotte, N.C.

n A reminder for dog owners that Saturday's annual Canine Christmas Festival is 10 a.m. at Bishop Animal Shelter, 5718 21st Ave. W., Bradenton.

The Guinness Sit-Stay Challenge is 3:30 p.m.

For details, call 941-746-3611. Or visit www.caninechristmas.com.

n Speaking of dogs, Debbie Capobianco's pooches Adrian, Bella and Rocky are boxers not dachshunds, as I wrote Wednesday.

Whoops!

n ABC 7 alum Kevin Neghandi is expanding his role at ESPN. Besides co-anchoring the 9 a.m. SportsCenter, he is taking over women's college basketball coverage, which includes hosting the women's NCAA tournament and its Final Four, too.

Guess where it is?

New Orleans.

Tough duty for Kevin.

n The Bradenton Elks, 2511 75th St. W., host Highway 41 South, a renowned bluegrass band, at 5 p.m. Saturday. Call 941-792-1511.

n Good luck to coach Joe Kinnan's Manatee Hurricanes, Paul Maechtle's Southeast Seminoles and Dave Marino's Palmetto Tigers as they begin the state playoffs tonight.

Palmetto's postseason opener at Auburndale recalls a 2000 season road trip when Southeast played there for the Class 4A-District 9 title.

The Bloodhounds' PA man also did rodeo so his game announcing was quite entertaining.

Of course, it wouldn't have been as amusing if the Seminoles, who got four TD passes from A.D. McPherson, hadn't pulled it out thanks to Travis Lipp's dramatic fourth-quarter punt return TD.

n The inaugural F.E.L.T. (Feeding Little Empty Little Tummies) Golf Classic is Monday at the Ritz-Carlton Members Golf Club.

Registration is 7:30 a.m.

Call Jane Evers at 941-747-8804.

n Rick Lewis is 55 going on 25.

n The inimitable E.D. "Moody" Johnson, Lincoln Memorial High's alumni president, will be honored at the group's annual alumni Christmas gathering, 5 p.m. Dec. 15 at Renaissance on 9th, 1816 Ninth St. W., Bradenton.

Call Linda Carnes, 941-721-8605; Virginia Massie, 941-360-0520; or Morris Goff, 941-722-2950 for ticket information.

Vin's People, is by local columnist Vin Mannix. He can be reached at 941-745-7055. Twitter: @vinmannix.

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