Category Archives: Announcements


bd’s Mongolian Grill Teams Up With the American Heart Association

the bd’s Mongolian Grill at Lakeside Village is under new ownership and teaming up with the American Heart Association as a part of the “Fun. Fresh. Food.”  promotion. An excerpt from the national press release:

During its “Fun. Fresh. Food.” promotion, bd’s will feature new ingredients, enhanced drink options and special recipes with ingredients that provide guests the opportunity to create a heart-healthy meal. In conjunction with the promotion, bd’s has pledged to raise $10,000 for the American Heart Association.

On February 23, you and your family are invited to be a part of the fun- and contribute to the fight against heart disease & strokes! Come out at any time on February 23 to try some of the new recipes, and 20% of your purchase (excluding alcohol) will be donated to the American Heart Association.

Be sure to bring this flyer with you to ensure that your check is included in the donation amout!

bd’s Mongolian Grill is located at 1474 Town Center Dr. For additional information on donating to the American Heart Association through this promotion, call (863) 688-3700.


A Message From Mayor Fields to TPO Board Members

Fellow TPO Board Members:

After reading the most recent media story regarding High Speed Rail, I felt it was vitally important that I correct the appearance that I have been stating two different ideas as it relates to where Polk County’s High Speed Rail Station should be located. The most recent media article states that I prefer a stop at Kathleen Road and /or US 98 North. This is not correct. I prefer we first have a stop in Polk County and secondly that we put our best effort into supporting that stop with transit connectivity. The successful passage of the November referendum to fund county-wide mass transit for Polk County is a crucial element in the success of any rail stop.

I believe some background is important at this point. Two weeks ago I was interviewed by our local news media. During that interview there was lengthy discussion clarifying that there are five possible sites (not two) that will receive some level of consideration in Polk County as a High Speed Rail stop. We also spent time discussing that it was difficult to identify a preference because we do not know what will drive the final decision-making process. I then referenced the initial procedure that led to high speed rail applications from around the country being submitted to the Federal Government last December. Florida was told that only “shovel ready” projects were to be submitted for funding consideration based on Federal guidelines. After submission, the criteria obviously changed because 13 funding awards were made and only three of them were for high speed rail systems that are reasonably close to being shovel ready. The remaining projects received money ranging from planning dollars to funds for the expansion of an existing passenger rail system.

Based on what happened at the Federal level during the original process, the criteria could change as it relates to what is the recommendation for Polk’s High Speed Rail stop. In an effort to make sure the point was clear during media interviews, I explained that if a location was chosen today based on the 2009 criteria it would lead you to the Kathleen Road/US 98 North Corridor because of population density and transportation infrastructure. I further explained that if the criteria allowed for a longer planning horizon and looked for a location with the greatest development potential in the future, it would lead you further east to the USF Polytechnic/Williams Company site. I then pointed out that the operator would most likely make the ultimate decision based on their return on investment. We must stand ready in unified support to any of the five possible sites that may get chosen by making sure the appropriate level of transit connectivity occurs with county-wide bus service.

Over the last two weeks there have been four news stories by three different reporters and only one of the articles clearly articulated the City of Lakeland’s position of being cautious. I will state it again here. It is premature for us to choose a site until we know more about the process and the criteria that will be used to make the final decision. All of the sites under consideration have positives and negatives. Our top priority must be securing a stop in Polk County. Secondly, and of even greater importance is that we become laser focused on making sure our referendum for county-wide bus service is successful this November. Without its passage we will fail to provide the opportunity for visitors arriving at the station to have the appropriate transportation to their ultimate destination. We would further fail to provide our citizens the opportunity for convenient access to this mode of transportation and multimodal choices in the Central Florida region.

Thank you,

Gow Fields

Gow B. Fields, Mayor
City of Lakeland
228 South Massachussetts Ave.
Lakeland, FL 33801
(863) 834-6005


Business Owners: Pay Attention to HR Pitfalls (NEW BUSINESS & BREAKFAST LOCATION)

Valencia Logo The February “Business and Breakfast” will be held at Valencia Hills Health & Rehabilitation Center. This month’s meeting will provide information on HR and Compliance issues small businesses may be unaware of.  Seating will be limited so get your reservation in soon!     Ms. Sandy Wotring, President of Best Human Resource Solutions, will provide important information every business should know.

Valencia Hills Health & Rehabilitation Center | 1350 Sleepy Hill Road

February 11 | 7:30 – 9:00 a.m.

$5 Members | $15 Guests

Pre-pay & register here, or bring cash or check to the door.


Florida Southern Travel Story Garnering National Attention

A travel story by The Associated Press on (Chamber Trustee) Florida Southern College’s historic Frank Lloyd Wright campus has been featured in at least a dozen newspapers and Web sites around the nation, including the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun, ABC, CBS, and MSNBC. AP writer Jennifer Kay and photographer Julie Fletcher told the story of the campus’s restoration efforts. To read the story and view photographs, click on any of the links below:

Fla. Campus Restoration Revives Wright’s Vision
Ongoing restoration revives Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision for Florida college campus. | See article

Chicago Tribune:
Wright-designed college campus revived

Once on the World Monument Fund’s endangered list, Florida Southern College — the only college campus designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and the largest collection of his work on a single site — is being restored to his original vision . | See article

Times Standard (Eureka CA):
Fla. campus restoration revives Wright’s vision | See article

Baltimore Sun:
Fla. campus restoration revives Wright’s vision | See article

The Gainesville Sun:
Florida Southern College campus restoration revives Wright’s vision | See article

Kelowna Daily Courier, CA:
Ongoing restoration revives Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision for Florida college campus | See article

Yahoo! News, Canada:
Ongoing restoration revives Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision for Florida college campus | See article
Florida Campus Restoration Revives Frank Lloyd Wright’s Vision | See article

Fla. Campus Restoration Revives Wright’s Vision | See article

Fla. campus restoration revives Wright’s vision
Preserving architecture that ‘represents the laws of harmony and rhythm’ | See article

Salt Lake Tribune:
Florida travel: Campus restoration revives Frank Lloyd Wright’s vision | See article
US campus restoration revives Wright’s vision | See article


2010 Census: It’s in Our Hands!

Census Web U.S. Census Bureau |

1366 Ariana St | (863) 450-3630

The United States Census Bureau’s Lakeland office is in charge of conducting the 2010 Census for all of Polk and Highlands Counties. The goal of the 2010 Census is to count every individual residing in the United States, count them only once and count them in the right place. This is a massive operation that will require the collaboration and support of local government, businesses, organizations and individuals from every sector of society.

Census data will help communities receive more than $400 billion in federal funds each year for things like:
  • Hospitals
  • Job training centers
  • Schools
  • Senior centers
  • Bridges, tunnels and other-public works projects
  • Emergency services

The data collected by the census also help determine the number of seats your state has in the U.S. House of Representatives. That’s why it is essential for everyone to fill out and return their Census Questionnaires.

The Lakeland Local Census Office will also be hiring over 1300 temporary employees. For information about Census Jobs, please call 1-866-861-2010.