StrawBerry Ridge is an adult, gated community located in Valrico, FL. There are 867 homes in The Ridge. The community boasts indoor and outdoor pools, spas, a brand new Fitness Center, Activity Center, and Clubhouse. There are tennis courts, shuffleboard courts, a ceramics shop and a woodshop. In addition to all the various activities, there is also a library and billiards room on premises. StrawBerry Ridge has so much to offer. Why would you want to live anywhere else!




Wednesday, August 5th

Thursday, August 6th


Thursday, August 6th
7:00PM at Activity Center

Friday, August 7th

Saturday, August 8th

In addition, there are many activities/events that take place every week,  and there is also a nice library, puzzle closet, etc. for your use. Some of the activities are on hiatus.  Check the SR calendar if in doubt.  Don't forget the Fitness Center, Wood Shop, and Ceramics Shop.  Some of the activities are on hiatus for the summer.  Check the Toppings, the Blogs, Bulletin Boards, and the Community Channel for info.




Al Bernacki, 320 Choo Choo Lane, passed on July 29, 2015 leaving his wife, JoAn, with many wonderful memories.  Al, a World War II veteran, was a founding member of the StrawBerry Ridge Veterans Club and also the Woodshop, was in the StrawBerry Singers and many other organizations.  He loved life, loved people, loved cards and bingo and travel club day trips. Rest in Peace, Al.  Hugs to JoAn and all their family! A Memorial Service will be held at Serenity Meadows Funeral Home, 6919 Providence Road, Riverview, at 11:30AM on Saturday, August 15th. 



Stephanie Florio
(from Staten Island, NY)
122 Coral Crest Drive

William & Anne Devin
(from Thonotosassa, FL)
271 Taho Circle

Ruth Power
(from Cathedral City, CA)
256 Taho Circle

Antonio & Mary Navarro
(from Gulfport, MS)
3620 Whistle Stop Lane


Freddie & Amy Lumpkins

Walter & Janice Parker

Jerry & Elaine Sullivan


8/1 –   Barbara Ansbro
8/2 –   Cathie Wyatt
8/3 –   Carol Moody
8/4 --  Norman Loiselle
8/9  –  Judy Burfitt
8/10 – Larry Holder
8/11 – Carol Tate
8/12 -- Sandy Brown
8/13 – Elaine Sullivan
8/13 – Ginger Stephens
8/17 – Lea Ann Ziarno
8/18 – Terry Bobb
8/20 – Diane Alexander
8/25 – Margaret Adams
8/26 – Dinah Craddock
8/27 – Judy Huff
8/29 – Earl Emmons
8/29 – Kenneth Coleman
8/30 -- Barbara Hardy

FROM THE MANAGER’S DESK By: Teresa Fuller, Manager

This month I am highlighting our guideline pertaining to short term guests. Anyone staying more than thirty (30) days per calendar year must apply for residency at the community office.

16. GUEST REGISTRATION: You are encouraged to have guests in your home, provided their stay is limited to thirty (30) days per calendar year. For use in the case of emergency, please have your guests register at the Community Office. You are requested to register when leaving on an extended trip and when you return. Residents are responsible for the activities and conduct of their guests. Guests under the age of eighteen (18) years of age must be supervised when using the Com-munity facilities. No more than four (4) permanent occupants per home are permitted.

An outstanding garden in Strawberry Ridge

When Christine Ritter sent me an email about her next-door neighbor's garden with hollyhocks, delphinium, dahlias, foxgloves and more, I had to go see it. She called it the most beautiful yard in Strawberry Ridge. I already knew there are many amazing gardens there. Joyce and John Gill have lived in Valrico for 17 years. The property was just a pile of dirt when they came. Joyce had always gardened and done so in five different zones, but she still had to learn from trial and error. She tried tulips and they didn't do at all. The peonies she planted came up and died. Now she is successful with crape myrtles and magnolias.

John is a park maintenance supervisor who will retire at the end of the year, but he already helps Joyce in their own garden. There is a preserve behind it, which is a plus for privacy and a mostly pleasant background, but can be a source of nasty vines like air potato that cross boundaries. When weeds try to settle in this garden, they don't stay long.

The front yard and plants on the porch would be garden enough for many people. Joyce has two great talents I wish I had: absolute neatness and a flair for garden art. Even the carport is attractive, with a large jade plant and dried bouquets at the side door.

Their lot is pie-shaped and quite large in the back. Strips of white fencing provide a bright background to some of the flower beds. Sure enough, she had three large pots of foxgloves in full bloom. She buys them and the delphinium at Kerby's Nursery in Brandon when they first come in. One summer they lasted until August.

She has kept dahlias year-round and has grown some of the tall ones that have huge blooms, but they were hard to stake. Now she enjoys the dwarf ones, which require less maintenance. Her hollyhocks are the Vietnamese kind, and she has both pink and yellow.

All of the beds are neatly edged, some with stone or concrete edgers. And there are stepping stones or paths for easy access to every plant. Even the mulches - some stone, some rubber - add to the scene. I haven't recommended rubber mulch because there has been concern about what it does to the soil. But it has worked well for the Gills, and it does last much longer. They say they've had no problems with their plants.

Joyce works in her garden about 20 hours a week, more if she and John have a weekend project to work on together. On the side between their home and Christine's, Joyce grows her orchids through the warm months hanging from a magnolia tree.

She tries to water as much as she can from her rain barrel. When it's dry, she uses the hose on the shower setting. She soaks her pots and simply sprinkles the ground gardens.
She feeds everything with Miracle-Gro sprayed through the hose. She also spreads Kirby's fertilizer about three times a year.

Joyce likes gardening for the peacefulness it gives when she is out there and can forget all things except what she's doing at the moment - and for the beauty it adds to her world.

Today's pick is the Hoya compacta cultivar Krinkle Kurl, commonly called Hindu rope, Indian rope, angel rope or porcelain flower. This tropical perennial vine grows no more than 6 feet a year and thrives in sun to partial or light shade. Joyce has a beauty in full bloom on her screened porch.
This plant needs consistent watering. You shouldn't let it go dry or over-water it. The flowers are fragrant and attracts bees, butterflies and birds outdoors. The plant can be multiplied from green or woody stem cuttings. Like most hoyas, it blooms best if it's pot bound.

Now's the time air potato vines are resurrecting and trying to take over everything. Pull them out whenever you see them. If you find the little potatoes, put them in the freezer overnight and that should kill them. They are very rampant, like most weedy vines, but they pull easily.

Brandon News

HURRICANE SEASON - June 1 to December 1

Hurricane season runs from June 1st through November 30th. With hurricane season upon us, we should start making our plans in the event one comes our way. The following information is for people who have special needs and need help in evacuating:

There are several Special Needs (Medical) Shelters in Hillsborough County. A special needs shelter is a temporary emergency facility capable of providing care to residents whose medical condition is such that it exceeds the capabilities of the Red Cross Shelter but is not severe enough to require hospitalization. Health Department doctors and nurses support these shelters. You must be pre-registered before the hurricane. Early registration allows emergency officials to quickly identify and check on those that need medical attention. Special Needs applications are available by calling Hillsborough County's Infoline at (813) 272-5900 or the Hillsborough County Health Department (813) 307-8063. This will help in determining which shelter they should go to and what, if any assistance they require to evacuate. You can pick up a form at the SRHA Office or download it at  They will also be available at Wednesday Night Bingo through 5/27.  Once you fill out the form, the SRHA will be happy to fax it in for you.  It only needs to be filled out once.  The country will contact you each year to update it.  All info is confidential!

FOR THOSE OF YOU WITHOUT SPECIAL NEEDS, be advised that the following shelters are the closest to us. You will be advised as to which one(s) are open for each event:

Valrico Elementary, 609 S. Miller Rd.
Nelson Elementary, 5413 Durant Rd.
Mulrennan MS, 4215 Durant Rd.

For a list of items you should take with you, see

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT PROTECTING YOUR PET,  call 813-744-5660 or go to  The ones that accept pets are:

Shields Middle School 15732 Beth Shields Way, Ruskin
Bartels Middle School 9020 Imperial Oak Blvd
Smith Middle School 14303 Citrus Pointe Dr. Citrus Park
Burnett Middle School 1010 N. Kingsway Rd, Seffner for more info.

Everyone should file their emergency contact numbers with the Sales Office in the event of an emergency.  This is especially true for those residents who live alone.  With that info in their file for you, it will be much easier to contact a relative in the event of any emergency.  This is a good time to prepare your home by making sure that all trees around your home are trimmed and that the exterior of your home is in good order. You can also start stocking up on batteries, non-perishable food, and water. Make sure that you don't let your medications run out. Keep the gas tank in your car full. Have some cash on hand. Have you had your hurricane straps checked recently to make sure that they are secure? Do you have a cellphone in the event that our phone service is interrupted for a long time? There is a government-sponsored program that will provide individuals who quality with a free cellphone. To see if you qualify, go to

For more info on hurricane preparedness, go to


Join us for a meal
5:00pm TO 6:30pm
or until sold out
Meal is different each week
Come join your friends and neighbors!
Only $4
Everyone Welcome


Planned and Cooked by Mary P. and Helpers
Questions?  Call or see Mary P.


We have a new club! The Quilters will now meet every Tuesday at a new time in the back room at the AC!


By Rose Panella

Our membership is $6.00 for 1 year and $15.00 for 3 years. Joining now for 1 year gives you a membership from April 1, 2015 thru March 31, 2016. If you decided to join for 3 years, your membership will be from April 1, 2015 thru March 31, 2018.

I will be posting a list of those current members whose membership has expired effective March 31, 2015. Applications for joining can be dropped off at the Homeowner’s Office which is in the Activity Center. I will be there on Wednesdays this month between 11 am and 1 pm. If you are a current member, please enclose your current membership card if you wish to have that updated.  


The StrawBerry Ridge Ladies Auxiliary has taken over the on-going charity drive to collect useful items for the residents of the Haley's Cove Community Living Center, formerly the James A. Haley Veterans Residence Center. If you would like to contribute, you may drop off any items to any of the members of the Ladies Auxiliary. They will even be happy to pick them up at your home if you give one of them a call. These are the items most needed:

White Socks, White T-Shirts (no sleeveless), White Socks for Diabetics, Ball Caps, Caps with ear flaps, Knitted caps, Disposable Razors, Denture Brushes, Denture Cleaner, Denture Cups, Toothbrushes, Tooth Paste, shampoo, deodorant, Wheelchair Gloves (no fingers), any Paperback Books, Men's Body Wash and Cologne, Combs, Hair Brushes, Large Print Magazines, Large Print Crossword Puzzle Books, Ink Pens, Large Print Crossword Puzzle Books, and A and AA batteries.
Your donations are MOST appreciated! We are so thankful for our Veterans! Contact Ladies Auxiliary President, Amy Lumpkins at 502-5008 or any Ladies Auxiliary member if you have items to be picked up.


By: Wilma Hall 689-8988

The Strawberry Ridge Art Guild meets the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month from 9:30 AM until 11:30 AM in the Activities Center during the months of November to April.  Someone once said that deep down inside all of us have an artistic desire just waiting to burst out. What if your artistic ability was to be able to paint a picture, and you did not know it.  You may think that you have no talent for painting, but until you try with someone to guide and help you—you could be wrong. If you already know you have a desire to paint, come join us for the fellowship of other artists and perhaps pick up a tip or two.  


The StrawBerry Ridge Blog was born on September 3, 2008 after months of considering different ways to keep the residents and snowbirds updated on Ridge events in between issues of the monthly Strawberry Toppings. After creating a blog listing all the various activities and contact numbers, more things came to mind that could be helpful to residents of StrawBerry Ridge.  After six years, you can see that the Blog has grown to contain so much more than just a listing of activities.  StrawBerry Ridge is a wonderful place to live, and the Blog is meant to reflect that. Many thanks to all the residents who have contributed photos, articles, and suggestions.  It is much appreciated!                                                         
Chris Ritter, Blogger


The Ceramics Shop (The Berry Clay Pit) is located in the new Fitness Center on Strawberry Ridge Blvd. It is open for classes on Tuesday at 6:00PM, Thursday and Saturday at 9:00AM. The fees are very nominal. They have everything you will need to get started. In addition to nourishing your creative side, you will find many new friends there. The Ceramics Sale each year is a very popular event, and the people line up early to get in the door to see all the bargains. And if you need a gift, they always have finished products available for sale. Why not stop by and check it out sometime or call Barbara Edwards at 643-6067 for more information.


If you have cable tv with Bright House, you can receive the StrawBerry Ridge Community Channel. There is much useful information for all the residents on the Community Channel. Why not take 20 minutes and sit down and relax and watch the whole thing scroll. It is updated regularly for you, so be sure to check it often.  If you have an analog tv, you will find it on channel 95.  If you have a digital box, you will find it on channel 98-1.  (Some tv's have analog tuner AND digital tuner, then you will have both 95 and 98-1.)  And if you are using a hi-def tv with a smartbox (or dvr,) it will be on channel 732. The Community Channel can also be accessed from the Blog (at the top of the right sidebar.)


Did you know that there is WIFI at both the Clubhouse and Activity Center? 
Many thanks to Management for providing this amenity!



Any resident who is age 65+ may apply for a permit to ride the bus for half-price. Permits are $2.50, and they must provide either a valid Florida Drivers License or Photo ID to the representative for proof of eligibility.  Contact HART to get your permit.

The 1 Day Unlimited Ride rate is $4, Express $6.  One-Way Fare is $2, Express $3.  The permit would get you half off of these fare.  The bus will stop at Dover Road Park-n-Ride.