On Tuesday, February 22, 2011, Palmetto Bay added another shining milestone to its storied history with the grand opening ceremony of its new municipal center. Filled with elected officials from around the South Florida area, the two-hour celebration delighted residents.
Shortly before 4:00PM, the Mayor and the rest of the Village staff were hard at work readying the property for the event. The policing unit had a booth outside and helped residents who attended the opening ceremony. Village Manager Ron Williams shook the many hands of those who took part in the design and completion of the facility. Public Information Officer Bill Kress, prepared the Mayor and made sure things went off without a hitch.
Inside, the crowds grew beyond the chambers, which was fine becuase of the overflow capacity of the Village Hall lobby, complete with two huge screens and a sound system.
After some hugs, hellos and handshakes, the event officially began with a ribbon cutting and then moved into the Council Chambers. All of the Councilmembers and Vice Mayor gave their thanks and welcomed the community to "their house of democracy."
Mayor Shelley Stanczyk took time to single out two driving forces in the conception and work that resulted in this LEED Platinum-certified building, Village Manager Ron Williams and 1st Mayor of Palmetto Bay Eugene Flinn, Jr. She explained that Ron Williams was able to bring in the project to completion on time and under budget. Mayor Flinn was recognized for being the driving force behind the formation of Palmetto Bay in 2002 and in championing a green and fiscally responsible Village Hall.
Among the 200 or so attendees, were all the prior members of the Village Council. The former Mayor, Vice Mayor Linda Robinson and others listened and beamed with pride for the Village.
After Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Congressmen Mario Diaz-Balart & David Rivera presented a proclamation to the Village, the Mayor invited Gene Flinn to the podium.
The former Mayor again applauded everyone's efforts and reiterated that the building was the right thing for Palmetto Bay residents. To paraphrase: This platinum building doesn't contain platinum, nor did it equal platinum in cost. It will, however, provide platinum value to all of Palmetto Bay.
I had to leave before teh completion of the ceremony, but this was clearly another proud day to be in Palmetto Bay.
Added on 2/24/11 after a moment to edit, this embodies the spirit of the day's events.