Category Archives: Uncategorized

Paint for Paws raises $3,000 for family pet sheltering at CASA

by ZontaDoris

Feedback on our Paint for Paws fundraiser is ALL positive!

In case you missed our fabulous fundraiser,our purpose was to help CASA, the domestic violence shelter in St. Petersburg, start its family pet sheltering program onsite to keep loving family members–including canines and felines–FULLY together and safe from abuse.

Friday night, two Paint for Paws artists told me, again, more than four weeks after the event, how much they enjoyed the evening. The friends of other Zonta Club members are giving similar praise for the event on October 5 at Painting with a Twist

Here is what we are cheering about: 

  • We sold out Painting with a Twist. The capacity is 55 guests. We actually had more than 55 people there because some of us organizers gave our easels to guests to use.
  • The crew at Painting with a Twist–owner Marvin Gay, manager Joshua French, and art instructor Adrianna Auriemma are wonderful hosts and partners for this kind of event. They kept us informed of our growing reservations list. They helped us plan pre-event how we would set up our food and auction tables. They gave us early access to set up our 25+ auction baskets and food and they adjusted quickly to keep things moving well during the event. Joshua and Adrianna, equipped with different instructional styles, each came across well to the guests.
  • Kathy Scott from CASA spoke to the crowd. She explained that the pet sheltering had been a dream of Linda Osmundson, the former ED who passed away in January 2016 as the new CASA state-of-the-art domestic violence shelter came into being. Room had been set aside for a kennel to be built on the site. The catch was that new money had to be raised apart from the funds for sheltering human survivors of domestic violence.
  • So many businesses and individuals helped underwrite the event with donations of items and services for auction baskets. (See our slider on the home page for the logos of sponsors, supporters, and pals.) We also had plenty of tasty food and wine. Cicis delivered pizza–savory and cinnamon-sweet–and Subway donated sandwiches. We even had a special chocolate cake baked by cake artist Jazmin Demerjian to raise even more money and eat by the end of the evening.
  • We raised over $3,000 for the Zonta Foundation through our raffle sales, silent auction, and donations on our website with our new donations button. Now we are talking with John Biesinger at CASA (Community Action Stops Abuse) to find a good time to present a $3,000 check to CASA to keep domestic violence survivors’ families intact while they are living in the CASA shelter. CASA will become only the 8th DV shelter in Florida to house pets onsite with their families.  
  • We are thrilled with the outcomes we achieved. Thank you to everyone who contributed their time, energy, and money to make it successful. We could not have done it without you!

Picture of brushes from Pixabay

Views expressed in this blog post are mine and may not reflect the stance of the Zonta Club of Pinellas County or Zonta International. — Doris Reeves-Lipscomb


Rallying with “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense”

by ZontaDoris

Our last blog post covered the upcoming gathering in Gladden Park in St. Petersburg on June 3, the day after the national “Wear Orange” campaign to stop gun violence. This blog post attempts to convey what we did there.

In spite of wicked, ever-changing weather in St. Petersburg, four of us Zonta members went to the rally, met a lot of lovely people, and did not get wet!

Here’s what we really enjoyed doing:

  • wearing our orange “say no to violence against women” Macedonian/Albanian partner T-shirts–their ice breaker impact was terrific–people came to us to ask about Zonta! Thank you, Jessica, Judithanne, and Donna for making them a reality.


  • introducing Zonta and our “say no to violence against women” mission to many folks


  • congregating with peace-loving organizations including the League of Women Voters, St. Petersburg Friends, CASA, and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense


  • inviting several women to come to our Zontafest event in Safety Harbor on June 22


  • learning from advocates for peace including Jan Neuberger, emcee for the day (and resident of Newtown, CT when the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting happened), Dr. Kanika Tomalin, Deputy Mayor of St. Petersburg, and City Council Member Lisa Wheeler-Brown who lost her son to gun violence eight years ago


  • manifesting our love of peace by making a peace sign on the lawn. It was photographed by a woman on top of a very tall ladder and a drone camera. Can you find the five of us? (Jill, Doris, Donna, Cocoa the dog, and Vildana) Hint: Doris has a camera up to her eye.


It was affirming to congregate with like-minded advocates who want to stop people from dying too young and needlessly. See our pictures below.

Speakers at the event

Speakers at the event

We felt a kindred spirit in Eddie Pearson, longtime CASA advocate who spoke so movingly at the CASA Spring luncheon.

We felt a kindred spirit in Eddie Pearson, longtime CASA advocate who spoke so movingly at the CASA Spring luncheon.

Some of the delightful people we met

Some of the delightful people we met

Yet more lovely people and dancers, too

Yet more lovely people and dancers, too


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Peace sign picture from rally organizers available here; all other pictures photographed and edited by Doris

Views expressed in this blog post are mine and may not reflect the stance of the Zonta Club of Pinellas County or Zonta International. — Doris Reeves-Lipscomb

Jan. 31st, celebrate Amelia Earhart: Zontian and Aviation Pioneer

From the Official Amelia Earhart website--

by ZontaDoris

Amelia Earhart is the most famous Zontian since the organization was founded in 1919. And January is Celebrate Amelia Earhart Month at Zonta International.


Earhart achieved many firsts, including achievements in aviation, commerce, and public relations. From the Family of Amelia Earhart website we learn that Amelia, born in 1897, first became acquainted with flying at age 10 at a state fair:

She said as the pilot swooped down to scare her and her friend, she believed “that little red airplane said something to me as it swished by.” She went up in an airplane for the first time in 1920 and “knew that  I had to fly.”

She started flying lessons in 1921 and within six months had saved enough money to buy her first plane.

In 1928, she joined two male aviators to become the first woman to fly across the Atlantic.

In 1932, five years after Charles Lindbergh had flown from New York to Paris, she tried to fly solo from Newfoundland to Paris. However, terrible weather conditions and mechanical problems forced her down in Ireland. It was still celebrated as a cross-Atlantic flight, making her the second pilot and first woman to achieve the journey.   Earhart felt the flight proved that men and women were equal in “jobs requiring intelligence, coordination, speed, coolness, and willpower.”

In succeeding years, she flew higher than anyone had before and was the first person in 1935 to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean from Honolulu to Oakland, CA.

Her final flight occurred in 1937 when she had flown 22,000 miles of her 29,000 mile journey around the world. She and her navigator Fred Noonan took off from Lae, New Guinea for Howland Island, some 2,556 miles distant. However, cloudy weather made celestial navigation impossible and her plane went down short of Howland Island, never to be found.

In a letter to her husband, written in case a dangerous flight proved to be her last, her brave spirit was clear. “Please know I am quite aware of the hazards,” she said. “I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others.”

Because her impact for changing the rules for women to aspire to challenges previously reserved to men, Zonta International “established the Amelia Earhart Fellowship in 1938 in her honor to assist the future of women in aviation and other aerospace-related sciences and engineering. Today, the Fellowship of US$10,000 is awarded annually to 35 talented women, pursuing Ph.D./doctoral degrees in aerospace-related sciences or aerospace-related engineering around the globe.”


We pulled a 3 minute video of Amelia Earhart narrating the economic benefits of women in science and aviation from the ZI website to embed below.



We are honored to have Keith Law, Clearwater librarian and historian on Amelia Earhart come to our Club meeting on January 31 to talk about Earhart’s life and many achievements. Please come to:

Grimaldi’s at Countryside Mall

27001 US Highway 19 North, Clearwater

6:00 PM for dinner

Mr. Law’s presentation will follow dinner

Please use our contact form to reserve seats for yourself and others. Grimaldi designates a private room and staff person for our meetings/meals. Each person pays her own expenses. Menu and prices available here. We request a $5 donation to the Club to help show our appreciation to Mr. Law, too.

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Picture of Amelia Earhart in flight suit from

Picture of Amelia Earhart in cockpit from Zonta International

Views expressed in this blog post are mine and may not reflect the stance of the Zonta Club of Pinellas County or Zonta International. — Doris Reeves-Lipscomb