NewsLetter January 2018

Volume VIII | January 2018
Your monthly news & updates
Hello Curtiss Mansion Friends:
Can you feel the love? So can we! Thanks for caring and being a part of our continued growth.
Hope to see you at The Mansion this coming Saturday Evening, February 17th – In the spirit of Valentines, please join us for “Music at The Mansion’s Jazz & Swing Edition.” There is a charge for this event. For ticket information please go to  www.curtissmansion.com/tickets
On Wednesday, Feb 21st – FREE TO THE PUBLIC – Paul Bithorn will be our Monthly Public Speaker at 7pm. Paul will be discussing “How to create a Bird & Butterfly Friendly Habitat.”
Our Curtiss Explorers Essay Contest applicant deadline is on
March 1st. Tech prizes and Miami Heat Merchandise will be awarded for the Finalists and Winners. The flyer is in the body of this e-blast announcing this year’s Mentor and Judges.
Along with our partner, The Miami-Dade Public Library System, we would like to welcome and thank our newest supporting sponsor, The Miami Heat. Special thanks also to a core group of educators helping to get the word out to the Miami-Dade schools this year. The Curtiss Explorers Essay Contest is designed to help Middle School students master good research practices. Our own Glenn Hammond Curtiss is the inspiration as an unsung hero – on which their topic is about. An unsung hero, be it person or animal.
Our popular 1-week Summer Camp, Camp Invention, is in need of a new Director this year. They should be a retired or current Teacher with a Scientific or Invention background. If you are interested or know of someone capable, please contact me directly via email.
See below for further information on all of these upcoming events and photos/news of our January Recap.
Have a  lovely  Valentine’s everyone —
Melinda Jester,
Executive Director
January Recap and Announcments
Jean Tucker, Volunteer. Taking a breather after tirelessly working on our butterfly garden. Thank you Jean!
We are very proud of Miami Springs for hosting this month’s Board of Directors Meeting for the Miami-Dade County League of Cities. Over 60 elected officials from all over the county met at the Miami Springs Golf and Country Club this week. Before the meeting there was a tour of the historic golf course and the Curtiss Mansion. Our very own Melinda Jester was one of the speakers for the evening!
Our Executive Director and our wonderful yoga instructor, Natasha Salomon-Cogno , participated in the Community Health & Wellness Fair at the Miami Springs Woman’s Club on January 27th. They were promoting NEW yoga classes that will soon be coming to the Curtiss Mansion. Join us every week on Monday Evenings and Saturday Mornings! Please contact Natasha directly for more information. See below.
We would like to thank all of the wonderful Wedding and Event Professionals that came to network at the Curtiss Mansion for Tuesdays Together- Miami, FL . We are happy to have hosted such a great group of individuals. We want to thank Karmic Ice Cream for bringing their vintage ice cream truck, and Myrna at Taylor Events for decor. We would also like to thank The Addison, Beauty from Ashes and Isle from Desserts by Sweet V who helped with bringing desserts. Social Media was the primary discussion – very informative!
A big thank you to Danielle Bender who came to talk about community beekeeping and the importance of bees in our neighborhoods! She treated us to a honey tasting, and allowed us to see the bees up close. It was a fun event, and we would also like to thank everyone who came out and participated.
Thank you to everyone who came to this great family double feature organized by Sam Chesser and Little Revolt. They always do such a lovely job and the kids have so much fun. We welcome you back anytime they are having an event. Special thanks also to the MSSH Math Club for supplying snacks. You wont want to miss the next one!
Upcoming Events
Click HERE to get your tickets now!
February Public Speaker Paul Bithorn:
Wednesday, February 21st at 7pm
Click HERE for more details!
Curtiss Explorers Judges and Mentor
Mentor: Nadege Green
Nadege Green has been a journalist in Miami for 10 years. She covers social justice issues for WLRN, the local NPR affiliate.
For her, journalism is not only about telling the stories of the people who are accessible, but also seeking out the voices we don’t hear from, and telling those stories too.
She has been recognized by the National Association of Black Journalists with three first place awards for investigative reporting, long form and short form radio reporting on policing in Miami-Dade’s black communities. Green’s work has also been honored by the Florida AP Broadcaster Awards, The Edward R. Murrow awards and others. She previously worked at the Miami Herald covering local city governments and the Haitian community.
Thais de Leon-Perez, Design Technology and Engineering Teacher
Thias has a background in biomedical engineering from her studies at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Thias de Leon-Perez is a distinguished teacher at Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart. She teaches I.B. Design Technology and Engineering. She is an active member of the community and is always looking for ways to expand her students thinking. Thias has a history with the Curtiss Mansion, and Glenn Curtiss’ life, running the very successful Camp Invention program in the Summer of 2017. Before working at Carrollton School of the Sacred Heart Thias de Leon-Perez has a background in new product development at Cordis and St. Jude Medical. While at Cordis she was also worked as a process engineer.
Grant Gravitt Jr., Television Producer/President Tel-Air Interests
Grant Gravitt is an Emmy Awarded Television Producer and President of Tel-Air Interests, his families pioneering film and video production company. Founded in 1959, this South Florida company has worked on such storied broadcasts as Miss Universe, Miami Vice, The Golden Girls. He is a third generation Miami native with board positions in organizations such as The New World Symphony, The American Cancer Society Florida Chapter, and The American Red Cross resulting in the Price Waterhouse Young Professional Up & Comer of The Year Awards in both Dade and Broward counties.
Margie Lopez, Executive Director of The Miami Bach Society
Ms. Lopez graduated Coral Gables High School and later attended Miami-Dade College. Before working at non-profits her background was in banking and real estate. Mrs. Lopez elected to become a stay at home mom to her three children now adults, Michael, Christopher, and Daisy. While they were in school she became very active in the school district, becoming PTA/PTSA President at multiple schools and is credited in creating a PTSA at South Miami Senior High. As her children got older she started working an Administrator at a non-profit called Cuba On-Line. After they were forced to close due to discontinued funding from the Federal government Margie was asked to join the Miami Bach Society.  Margie Lopez has now been working with South Florida’s non profits for more than 21 years. She is currently the Executive Director of The Miami Bach Society, South Florida’s premier early music presenter. She is also the creator of “Bach to School” the Society’s Educational Outreach Program established in 2015. In this programs first two years it reached 10,000 local students!
Councilwoman Maria Puente Mitchell
Maria Mitchell has lived in Miami Springs with her husband for over 30 years, where they raised their three daughters. She was elected to the Miami Springs Council in April of 2017. Councilwoman Mitchell has graduate and undergraduate degrees from the University of Miami and University of Georgia in Environmental Health Science. She began her civic involvement in 1989 when she worked with the Miami Springs Junior Woman’s Club to create the Miami Springs Bike Path Project. Since then she has had a very diverse background in public service. She as worked as the Manager of Risk Management and Safety for Miami-Dade County, and is currently an adjunct professor at both FIU and Barry University. Councilwoman Mitchell has recently founded the S-Words Initiative  and the  Fewer Bags Initiatives . These are just a few of the many projects and places she has been involved.
Reverend Kit Robison, Grace Lutheran Church
Rev. Kit Robison is currently the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church in Miami Springs. He has an undergraduate degree in Engineering & Physics from Excelsior College, and a Masters of Divinity from Trinity Lutheran Seminary. Rev. Robison is an active member of his community as part of Rotary International, and by participating in events with organizations such as the Miami Springs Woman’s Club and Lion’s Club. He is also the Head of Global Missions Subcommittee for Accompaniment with Guyana and Suriname. With this position he acts as a shepherd and oversees the church relationship between the two countries. His evangelical background specializes in new church and mission development, with a focus on how to build healthy congregations. Rev. Robison is currently working on developing a new mission for a Latino ministry in Miami Springs.
Aviation in Miami Coach Tour with Dr. George
Saturday, April 28, 2018 from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Join HistoryMiami Museum’s Resident Historian, Dr. Paul George, and Miami International Airport, in celebrating MIA’s 90th anniversary! Discover the history of aviation in Miami and learn about some of its iconic figures, from aviation pioneer Glenn Curtiss to Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindbergh, and Eddie Rickenbacker. See Curtiss’ preserved home and gardens at the Curtiss Mansion, a designated site on the National Register of Historic Places. Reflect upon site of the former Pan American Seaplane Terminal, now Miami City Hall, and hear stories of naval aviation and flying boats in Dinner Key. Visit Miami International Airport and view the Hall of Aviation, featuring A Century of Flight: The Story of Aviation in Miami. Learn how MIA became Miami’s “Master Airport,” as you experience a behind-the-scenes look at the airport’s rich history.
Tour includes a buffet-style lunch at the 94th Aero Squadron Restaurant. Lunch included in ticket price. Drinks not included.
Partners: MIA, Curtiss Mansion
CLICK HERE for more information and to get tickets!
Ongoing Programs
We are excited to announce that the Curtiss Mansion is now partnering with the Miami-Dade Public Library to bring you FREE passes to the Historic Tours on Saturday. You can find them at any of their 50 Library Branches and their Bookmobiles! The pass is good for up to 4 people. Click  HERE  to go to the passes. We hope to see you soon.
Give back to the Curtiss Mansion simply by shopping on Amazon. Use this link to participate:
Local History? Aviation? Urban Planning? Architecture? Invention?
All Ages Welcome! High School to Retired
Current training available for:
Docents/Tour Guides & Information Desk
Help us build awareness of the significance of
Glenn Hammond Curtiss, the importance of his discoveries and how they affect our lives today.
Group and Weekly Saturday tours began in May and were well received by tour guests.  Training continues, please join us in preparation to
present tours yourself!
Contact   Member & Volunteer Services
Become A Member | Give Gift Memberships
In doing so YOU Support Growth & Development of Programs,
Tours & Exhibits at Curtiss Mansion
Member Levels start at Only $30 per Year | Discount on 2 Year
Memberships   Benefits Include:
  Admission to Curtiss Mansion AND 10 Local Participating Institutions:
Coral Gables Museum, Lowe Art Museum, HistoryMiami, Dade Heritage Trust, The Wolfsonian, The Bass Museum, Institute of Contemporary Art, Frost Museum of Art FIU, Ft. Lauderdale History Center, City of Miami Black Police Precinct   & Courthouse Museum
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Curtiss Mansion Merchandise
Membership Purchases Available at Curtiss Mansion
Front Desk 305-869-5180 or Online  www.curtissmansion.org
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For more information please contact:
CMI Board of Directors
Richard L. Wheeler
Paul Bithorn
Vice President
Carlos “Charlie” Leonard
Carlos Danaan
Angeline “Nikki” Jester
Rita Mayer
Jacqueline Neetz
Roy Rodriguez
Enrique Aguerrevere
Patricia Fernandez-Lefebvre
CMI Staff
Melinda Jester
Executive Director
Sherry Feijoo
Director of Meetings & Events
Debbie Villasmil
Assistant to the Executive Director
Alexandria Robison
Social Media Coordinator
Ymaris Tejeda
Administrative Assistant
Meeting & Event Staff
Javier Diaz
Nyree Feijoo
Spiro Armenis