For the second year in a row, the Manatee Wildcat Cheerleader Junior Peewee, Junior Midget and Midget Red squads advanced to the national competition.
The national event will be held Monday, Wednesday and Friday at the ESPN Wild World of Sports at Disney World near Orlando.
The girls are asking the community to help them raise money to travel to the competition.
Check out the web site at gofundme.com/i3fm2c and give what you can.
"For some of the girls on Midget, this will be their last year as Wildcats and some of them have been cheering for eight years," said Lacey Bradley, the cheer registrar for the squad.
"We are really hoping to make this last year spectacular for them," said Lacey, whose daughter, Cailey Aspril, 14, is one of the Wildcats in her last year.
How are these for back-to-back road trips?
Last Sunday, B'town's Trevor Gooby, senior Florida operations director for the Pittsburgh Pirates, was in frigid Green Bay, Wis., to witness the Packers 26-21 win over his fave New England Patriots at Lambeau Field.
"Five layers and still cold," he tweeted.
This Sunday should be much more pleasant weatherwise.
Gooby will be in balmy San Diego to see the Pats play the Chargers.
That's 32 years of wedded bliss for Carol and Dave Grantham.
Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore is 39. Again.
Stasia Green, a client of hairdresser and co-owner Timothy Raff of A Positive Image Hair Salon, wanted everyone to know about a wonderful Christmas project the business is holding.
There's a tree painted on the wall of the salon, 7010 Cortez Road, and people are attaching donations to the branches to help pay for as many memberships to the Boys and Girls Clubs possible.
Tim has also found someone who will match all donations, Stasia said in an email.
"He just wants to help keep our children off the streets," she said. "He also has his shop filled with donated stuffed animals that will bring smiles to sick children in our hospitals."
Get into the giving spirit and drop by the salon to offer your donation.
Don't forget the third annual Bradenton Blues Festival from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday on Bradenton's Riverwalk Park.
There's an all-star lineup of acclaimed blues acts.
Plus, there's Southern-inspired cuisine, craft beverages and an array of vendors to complement the live music.
And don't forget the associated Blues on Main event with Karen and the Big Bad Wolves and Tarpon Pointe Blues with Sean Chambers Band also are happening on Saturday.
For more information or to buy tickets, visit BradentonBluesFestival.org.
For a fun family event check out "Old-Fashioned Florida Christmas" at Palmetto Historical Park and Manatee County Agricultural Museum on Friday and Saturday from 5 to 9 p.m.
This free event offers something for everyone, including kids' crafts, Reindeer Games, entertainment and of course, Santa, and a lot more.
The park is located at 515-10th Ave. W., Palmetto
For more information, call 721-2034.
There will be a Chili Challenge at the Bridge Street Sunday Market this week.
The proceeds will benefit the Anna Maria Island Community Center.
Competitors should sign up in advance atbridgestreetmerchants.com.
Chili eaters will be able to taste the island's best for only $8 from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The winner earns bragging rights plus a $100 Publix gift card.
The weekly markets run 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Sunday through the end of April at 111 Bridge St. in Bradenton Beach and offers fresh produce, local art, chair massage, beach-style gifts, jewelry, clothes, home décor, food, fun and more.
Live music this week is by the hometown funk-reggae-blues-bluegrassy duo, Tangled Mangos.
Carl Mario Nudi, who retired from the Herald in August 2010 after 44 years in the business, is back with "Nudi's Neighbors" every Friday. Reach him at 941-708-7774 or via email at email@example.com.