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Archive for October, 2018

Dear Members and Friends of the Estonian Society of Central Florida/Kesk Florida Eesti Selts,

Our next gathering is Sunday, November 11, 2018, at 2:00 pm, at which time we’ll have a wonderful lunch, time to socialize, and kick off our activities for the 2018-19 year with our annual business meeting. Important topics will be discussed (please see below) so we hope you will make plans to join us.
PLEASE NOTE WE HAVE A NEW LOCATION FOR OUR GATHERING: Jüri and Jae Toomepuu are opening their beautiful home to us. We are sending the address by email. We are invited to bring appetizers and desserts to bookend the meal Jae will be preparing. In addition to enjoying each other’s company, the setting offers perfect opportunities for swimming in the Toomepuu’s pool or fishing off their dock. All are welcome! To help us plan for the right number, we ask you to let us know in advance if you will be coming. Please email Jüri Toomepuu (toomepuu@gmail.com) by Friday, November 2, 2018, to let us know if we may count you in/out!Items for the Annual Business Meeting (the agenda is here: Kesk Florida Eesti Selts Agenda Nov 11 2018)

1. KFES Elections for 2018-19PLEASE RESPOND TO THIS CALL FOR NOMINATIONS NOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE CONSIDERED A CANDIDATE FOR ELECTION TO THE ESTONIAN SOCIETY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA (KESK FLORIDA EESTI SELTS) BOARD. THE MEMBERS OF THE ESTONIAN SOCIETY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA (KESK FLORIDA EESTI SELTS) ELECT OUR PRESIDENT, BOARD MEMBERS, AND AUDITORS. If you would like to nominate yourself for election to one of our positions, please send an email to KFES Secretary Triin Karr.  At the November annual meeting, the current KFES Board will present its election slate and open nominations one more time from the floor.2. Program of Activities for 2018-19

The Board is proposing the following activities for 2018-19. If you have additional suggestions, please send them to KFES Secretary Triin Karr, triin.karr@gmail.com

Our Annual General meeting
Sunday, November 11, 2018
2:00 pm
We will gather in the lovely home of Jüri and Jae Toomepuu on the Hillsborough River in Tampa, Florida. We are invited to bring appetizers and desserts to bookend the meal Jae will be preparing. In addition to enjoying each other’s company, the setting offers perfect opportunities for swimming in the Toomepuu’s pool or fishing off their dock. To help us plan for the right number, we ask you to let us know in advance if you will be coming. RSVP by November 2, 2018.
Jõuluõhtusöök ja Jõuluvana
Traditional Estonian-style Christmas dinner with a visit by Santa Claus
Saturday, December 8, 2018
2:00 pm
The home of Kaie Põhi Latterner
241 173 Ave
N. Redington Beach, FL 33708
Eesti suppi ja võileiva lõunasöök
Estonian soup and sandwich lunch
This is a potluck, and we make Estonian-style soups, sandwiches and salads
Sunday, January 27, 2019
2:00 pm
Community Center in the Seminole Isles Condominium Complex
(this is where Anneliis Kuusik lives)
7069 Key Haven Rd.
Seminole, FL 33777
Eesti Vabariigi Aastapäeva Tähistamine
Celebration of Estonian Independence Day
Saturday, February 23, 2019
11:00 am – 3:00 pm (for the 101st Anniversary of Estonian Independence)
Feather Sound Country Club
2201 Feather Sound Dr
Clearwater, FL 33762

Potluck
Sunday, March 24, 2019
2:00 pm
The home of Kaie Põhi Latterner
241 173 Ave
N. Redington Beach, FL 33708
Piknik (potluck; our association provides grilled sausages)
Saturday, April 13, 2019
2:00 pm
Community Center in the Seminole Isles Condominium Complex
(this is where Anneliis Kuusik lives)
7069 Key Haven Rd.
Seminole, FL 33777
3. Our Association’s budgets
We will vote to approve the Treasurer’s reports, which include two budgets: (1) the actuals for 2017-18, and (2) the proposed budget for 2018-19.
4. Other Business
Please bring your ideas!
We look forward to seeing you in November!
KFES Juhatus

Estonian Society of Central Florida Board

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Norma Jean and Henn Rebane, KFES, 2. veeb. 2014. Clearwater, FL. Foto: Lisa A. Mets

Henn Rebane, a most-beloved member and founder of the Estonian Society of Central Florida/Kesk Florida Eesti Selts, passed away at home on September 26, 2018, after a hard fought battle with lung cancer. A surmakuulutus (notice of death) was published by our association in the September 27, 2018, issue of Vaba Eesti Sõna.

 

Henn was born to Hans and Maie (Steinberg) Rebane in Kirbla, Estonia, on November 14, 1933. The birth of his brother Priit, whom we all know well, followed. Henn was a man who professed great faith in God and whose life exemplified what it means to be a man of great compassion, generosity, ethics, and integrity. There could have been no finer men of influence shaping Henn’s life than his grandfather Pastor Bernard Steinberg, his father Pastor Hans Rebane, his uncle Pastor Juhan Suurkivi, and his brother Pastor Priit Rebane.

 

As it did for so many Estonians, World War II redefined Henn’s future. For one year, Pastor Hans Rebane, with his family, tended a congregation in Narva which, at that time, was under Russian occupation. As Germans retreated from Estonia, Henn’s mother Maie, temporarily leaving her husband Hans behind, embarked on her own journey with their two sons to safety. Their journey led them first to a displaced persons camp near Stuttgart, Germany, where they waited 5 years; and eventually to their homes in the United States starting in 1950 in St. Petersburg (FL); and then Appalachia, Philadelphia, and back again in St. Petersburg (FL).

 

St. Petersburg (Florida) holds a special place in the Rebane family heart and the Rebane family holds a special place in the history of St. Petersburg. Trinity Lutheran Church, the home for many years to the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church-Central Florida Congregation, was the sponsor that made it possible for the Rebane family to immigrate to the US and for Pastor Hans Rebane and eventually Pastor Priit Rebane to serve the Lord. According to the family, there is a photograph and article in the then St. Petersburg Times proclaiming the arrival of the area’s first post-WWII immigrant family. Unknown at that time was the civic commitment Henn would be making to St. Petersburg within two decades. Henn became President of the St. Petersburg Zoning Board and first Chairman of the Historical Commission that voted to save the Vinoy among its first acts. Henn’s beloved wife, Norma Jean, Henn and a small handful of others founded the St. Petersburg International Folk Festival Society (SPIFFS) and nurtured the Captive Nations Group in St. Petersburg.

 

When the family arrived in St. Petersburg in 1950, Henn, due to his age and tall height, was admitted as a senior at St. Petersburg High School. English and his high school subjects and high school graduation came easily to Henn as did acceptance to college in 1951. Henn went on to Georgia Tech to earn a BS in Electrical Engineering in 1956. Fulfilling the US requirement for mandatory service, Henn was an Ensign and Commander in the US Public Health Service from 1957-59. Henn earned his Florida Professional Engineering license in 1961.

 

Henn went on to enjoy a successful professional career mostly in Central Florida as an owner of his own company, Rebane Engineering; as a majority shareholder in Wedding and Associates; and principal in Boyle Engineering. Henn was active in leadership roles in many professional organizations serving as President of the Florida Institute of Consulting Engineers, President of the Florida Engineering Society, President of the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying, Florida’s National Director of the National Society of Professional Engineers, and Chair of the Florida Board of Professional Engineers.  Though he retired in 1998, Henn continued to serve actively in his own consulting firm. On March 12, 2008, the Florida House of Representatives paid tribute to Henn in House Resolution 9039.

 

Henn is survived by his beloved wife of 61 years, Norma Jean; son Paul (and wife Bethany); daughter Linda (and husband Andy Gotsch); grandchildren Hayden, Piper and Tanner Gotsch; brother Priit (and wife Judy) and their family; and extended family and friends in North America, Estonia and beyond.

 

Henn had a wonderful sense of humor and would likely chuckle at this characterization of one aspect of who he was: Henn was an Estonian magnet. As the Estonian community began to grow in St. Petersburg in the late 1960s, Henn and Norma Jean’s home quickly became the center for a cup of coffee and conversation for Estonian travelers, for visiting Estonian teams, and for Estonian Independence Day dinner celebrations for 80 participants and more. When the number of visitors and guests outgrew their home, and as St. Petersburg celebrated our nation’s bicentennial in 1976 with a celebration of its own immigrant community, Henn and others founded the Estonian Society of Central Florida/Kesk Florida Eesti Selts, and he served gloriously as our second president from 1978 to 2007.

 

Cremation has taken place. Interment will take place on Saturday, November 10, 2018, at 11:00 am, at Calvary Catholic Cemetery, 5233 118th Ave N, Clearwater, FL 33760; telephone 727.572.4355. We are invited to join the family for the interment service. Lunch will follow.

 

–Lisa A. Mets

Kesk Florida Eesti Selts

St. Petersburg, Florida

 

 

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The Estonian Society of Central Florida (Kesk Florida Eesti Selts (KFES)) resumed activities after our summer hiatus on Sunday, October 14, 2018, at 2:00 pm over an informal lunch at one of our favorite restaurants, Pier 22, in Bradenton, Florida. We were a small and hearty group.

KFES 14 okt 2018

Back row: Mai Treude, Lisa Mets, Maare Kuuskvere, Leena Aare. Middle row: Liivja Rebane, Jae Toomepuu, Jüri Toomepuu. Front row: Tiit Treude, Tõnu Toomepuu, Jaan Kuuskvere, Peep Rebane, and Erkki Taada. Kesk Florida Eesti Selts, 14 okt. 2018, Pier 22, Bradenton, FL. Foto: Sara of Pier 22.

Our next gathering is Sunday, November 11, 2018, at 2:00 pm, at which time we’ll kick off our activities for the 2018-19 year with our annual business meeting. Important topics will be discussed (please see below) so we hope you will make plans to join us.

PLEASE NOTE WE HAVE A NEW LOCATION FOR OUR GATHERING: Jüri and Jae Toomepuu are opening their beautiful home to us. It is located on the Hillsborough River in Temple Terrace, Florida. We are invited to bring appetizers and desserts to bookend the meal Jae will be preparing. In addition to enjoying each other’s company, the setting offers perfect opportunities for swimming in the Toomepuu’s pool or fishing off their dock. All are welcome! To help us plan for the right number, we ask you to let us know in advance if you will be coming. An announcement about this gathering with the Toomepuu address has gone out in email so it will be easy to reply.

1. KFES Elections for 2018-19

PLEASE RESPOND TO THIS CALL FOR NOMINATIONS NOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE CONSIDERED A CANDIDATE FOR ELECTION TO THE ESTONIAN SOCIETY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA (KESK FLORIDA EESTI SELTS) BOARD. THE MEMBERS OF THE ESTONIAN SOCIETY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA (KESK FLORIDA EESTI SELTS) ELECT OUR PRESIDENT, BOARD MEMBERS, AND AUDITORS. If you would like to nominate yourself for election to one of our positions, please send an email to KFES Secretary Triin Karr. At the November annual meeting, the current KFES Board will present its election slate and open nominations one more time from the floor.

2. Program of Activities for 2018-19

The Board is proposing the following activities for 2018-19. If you have additional suggestions, please send them to KFES Secretary Triin Karr.

Our Annual General meeting
Sunday, November 11, 2018
2:00 pm
We will gather in the lovely home of Jüri and Jae Toomepuu on the Hillsborough River in Temple Terrace, Florida. We are invited to bring appetizers and desserts to bookend the meal Jae will be preparing. In addition to enjoying each other’s company, the setting offers perfect opportunities for swimming in the Toomepuu’s pool or fishing off their dock. To help us plan for the right number, we ask you to let us know in advance if you will be coming. An announcement about this gathering with the Toomepuu address has gone out in email so it will be easy to reply.
Jõuluõhtusöök ja Jõuluvana
Traditional Estonian-style Christmas dinner with a visit by Santa Claus
Saturday, December 8, 2018
2:00 pm
The home of Kaie Põhi Latterner
241 173 Ave
N. Redington Beach, FL 33708
Eesti suppi ja võileiva lõunasöök
Estonian soup and sandwich lunch
This is a potluck, and we make Estonian-style soups, sandwiches and salads
Sunday, January 27, 2019
Community Center in the Seminole Isles Condominium Complex
(this is where Anneliis Kuusik lives)
7069 Key Haven Rd.
Seminole, FL 33777
Eesti Vabariigi Aastapäeva Tähistamine
Celebration of Estonian Independence Day
Saturday, February 23, 2019
11:00 am – 3:00 pm (for the 101st Anniversary of Estonian Independence)
Feather Sound Country Club
2201 Feather Sound Dr
Clearwater, FL 33762
Potluck
Sunday, March 24, 2019
2:00 pm
The home of Kaie Põhi Latterner
241 173 Ave
N. Redington Beach, FL 33708
Piknik (potluck; our association provides grilled sausages)
Saturday, April 13, 2019
2:00 pm
Community Center in the Seminole Isles Condominium Complex
(this is where Anneliis Kuusik lives)
7069 Key Haven Rd.
Seminole, FL 33777
3. Our Association’s budgets
We will vote to approve the Treasurer’s reports, which include two budgets: (1) the actuals for 2017-18, and (2) the proposed budget for 2018-19.
4. Other Business
Please bring your ideas!
We look forward to seeing you in November!

 

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