Chef Noel Cunningham cooking up the Vybez at Palm Beach Jerk Festival

West Palm Beach – The diverse and authentic Caribbean Jerk traditions are the key ingredients that event producer, Full-A-Vybez, Inc. has prepared for the 15th annual 1-800-411-PAIN Palm Beach Jerk and Caribbean Culture Festival, which will be held on Monday, May 28th, 2018 at the South Florida Fairgrounds (9067 Southern Blvd, West Palm Beach, FL 33411) from 2pm-10pm.

1-800-411 PAIN is once again the proud title sponsor.

This year’s festival includes talented culinary personalities who will take center stage to compete for the Caribbean’s top culinary honors.

There will also be an opportunity for patrons to partake in live cooking demos conducted by internationally renowned chef Noel Cunningham alongside specially invited guests.

Chef Noel Cunningham

Attendees will have an opportunity to indulge in succulent dishes and tasty libations, music, and more. To bring the diversity of the islands to West Palm Beach.

The festival honors the cultural richness, heritage and flavor that the Caribbean Jerk Seasoning lends to food and traditions. The dizzying variety of Caribbean Jerk can be found in the many food offerings that include succulent Jerk Lobster, Juicy Jerk Chicken, the Spicy Jerk Shrimp, the Sensational Smoked Jerk Pork and the popular Jerk Ice Cream.

Truly a family inspired festival, the Kids Zone is guaranteed to attract youngsters with fun, interactive programming through the day.

For the young and young at heart, the day party within the Jerk FDgw-1n+qP!5(*&IUJHest dubbed the Jerk Explosion Party Pavilion, is sure to entertain. Featuring popular DJs and a dance contest, the festivities are sure to be the perfect end to the Memorial Weekend.

To complete the taste of the islands, Fulla -Vybez Inc has created a fantastic lineup for the mainstage performance. Performers will be announced shortly.

Tickets can be purchased at Palm Beach Jerk Festival or popular local Caribbean community locations. Children 12 and under are admitted FREE of charge.

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Real Estate Notebook: Luxury condos coming to West Palm Beach

Bristol Palm Beach, an ultra-luxury 25-story condominium, is expected to break ground this summer along Flagler Drive in West Palm Beach.

The 69 units in the building at 1100 S. Flagler Drive target well-heeled buyers: Prices range from $5 million to $25 million. The units are from 3,700 to 14,000 square feet.

The developer is Flagler Investors, a partnership of Golub & Co., Commercial Financial Management and Elion Partners.

A sales center is at 440 Royal Palm Way in Palm Beach. The project is due to open in early 2018.

Jupiter apartments fetch $42 million

The Dakota at Abacoa apartment complex in Jupiter has sold for $42 million.

An affiliate of West Palm Beach-based Priderock Capital Partners bought the 190-unit property from a company tied to Index Investment Group and Eastwind Development.

Jupiter-based Index has built eight rentals from Central Florida to the Keys in partnership with Eastwind. They built Dakota in 2014. One-, two- and three-bedroom units start at $1,370 a month.

Stiles executive wins award

Doug Eagon, longtime president of the Stiles real estate firm, was awarded the NAIOP South Florida 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award.

The local chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties honored Eagon for his contributions to the trade group and the South Florida real estate community. Previous recipients include developers Armando Codina and Terry Stiles. Stiles presented the award to Eagon on Feb. 25 during a ceremony at the Hyatt Regency Pier Sixty-Six hotel in Fort Lauderdale.

Eagon has worked for Stiles for 35 years, the past 20 as president. In March, he will become vice chair of the board of the Fort Lauderdale firm.

Former BankAtlantic building sells

A Pennsylvania company has paid $21.5 million for the former BankAtlantic headquarters in Fort Lauderdale, public records show.

The two-story 185,000-square-foot building is at 2100 W. Cypress Creek Road. The buyer was Rosemont, Pa.-based 2100 West Cypress Creek Road Associates. The seller, 2100 West Cypress Creek Holdings, paid $21 million for the site in April 2015, records show.

Landscape architect to work on Fort Lauderdale project

Witkin Hults Design Group, an international landscape architecture firm in Hollywood, says it has been hired to design outdoor amenities for Quantum Flagler Village in Fort Lauderdale.

The firm will design pools, deck, outdoor areas and an urban plaza. Quantum Flagler Village is a new mixed-use development at Sunrise Boulevard and Federal Highway. It will have 338 apartments, a 138-room Courtyard by Marriott and 25,000 square feet of ground floor retail. The developer is the Prime Group of Fort Lauderdale.

Community association courses offered

The Katzman Garfinkel law firm will hold three free seminars for South Florida community associations in March.

The first course, to be held March 2, will allow board members to discuss issues with each other and a panel of experts in the accounting, management, insurance and legal fields.

The event will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Pat Larkins Center, 520 NW 3rd St. in Pompano Beach.

Other courses are scheduled for March 16 in Delray Beach and March 25 in Tamarac. For more information or to register, call 954-486-7774.

Staff researcher Barbara Hijek contributed to this report., 561-243-6529 or Twitter @paulowers

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Letters Clear thinking about West Palm golf course long overdue


Clear thinking on

course long overdue

Finally some clear thinking on the West Palm Beach public golf course. (“Developer to pour $86 million into reviving West Palm golf course,” Tuesday)

I was a member for more than 20 years and enjoyed the golden era when Dub Pagan and the old guard ran the show. Nothing good has happened since the dity took over and abandoned the golf commission.

I know I speak for many who hated the redesign, deforestation, and demolition of the clubhouse. When the crazy stories about residential development started to be kicked around, it seemed like a lost cause.

At last, City Commissioner Shanon Materio to the rescue. Finally, someone is listening to what a treasure the golf course is to a community. Aside from the tourist dollars, it is a fabulous amenity to the local housing market.

A lot of great memories at the old club. Maybe a new generation will have the same chance.


Who’s accountable

when a teen kills?

Another school shooting involving a student or former student.

Where do these kids get those guns? How do these kids get these guns?

Has anyone seen a single parent or guardian arrested or indicted when a minor commits these atrocities? I didn’t think so.


A fairly simple fix

for rural internet

Listening to the president talk about the internet needed in rural and places where they have no access, I have for years expected FPL, with the largest LAN (large area network) in South Florida, to make a deal with either Comcast or AT&T to deliver high-speed internet over their lines.

Since electrical wiring reaches almost every structure and building in Florida, plugging in high-speed data into their lines on a side channel would solve a myriad of problems. Comcast has spent millions on the copper cable they have strung throughout Florida, along with unknown costs for telephone lines by AT&T — all these lines could be eliminated.

FPL lines can carry all the data information needed over the power lines we all have installed in our homes. I have used the wiring in my home as a LAN for many years, using a product from Netgear.

This technology is not new. It has been used for more than 10 years. It could be a new revenue source for FPL and save the internet provider the capital it cost in cabling and maintaining wiring in every home. This would then provide internet to anyone with an electrical wall outlet anywhere.

Revenue-sharing is all it would take. The user would need to purchase a small 3-inch box to plug in where he needed internet. Sure, there are technical problems to be solved, but the consumer would benefit. Can someone make this happen?


Gun control now

before one more death

How many more lives will be lost before we enact stronger gun-control legislation? How many more innocent children and adults will be murdered before we say: “Stop! We won’t take this anymore!”

When are we going to get the automatic weapons out of circulation? When are we going to have universal background checks that include mental health status of the purchaser of every gun sold or traded?

While the progress we’ve achieved over the past five years gives me hope, I also recognize we need to move faster. Every day, over 100 Americans — toddlers, kids and adults — die from a gunshot. In no other developed country do leaders allow so many people to die from this preventable epidemic.

We must never accept this level of gun violence in America as normal. We must keep building momentum to save more lives in the years to come.

Please contact your legislators today and let them know you want action on gun legislation.


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Epic Palm Beach divorce starts Monday; will divide real estate empire

Palm Beacher Burt Handelsman testifies in Palm Beach County Circuit Court on June 6, 2017 in a preliminary hearing to his divorce trial from Lovey Handelsman. The trial, which starts Monday, Feb. 5, 2018, will divide a real estate empire worth $500 million.(Lannis Waters / The Palm Beach Post)


The breakup of one of the biggest real estate empires in Palm Beach County, featuring some of the toniest shops on Worth Avenue, gets underway Monday in Palm Beach County Circuit Court.

The month-long trial that will unfold before Circuit Judge Scott Suskauer will turn on dueling claims of the type of double-dealing, plundering and lying that punctuates many business disputes.

But the complex case isn’t purely a business feud. It’s a divorce.

After nearly seven decades of marriage, 89-year-old Lucille “Lovey” Handelsman set the wheels in motion for the epic battle by deciding she doesn’t want to be married to her 90-year-old husband, Burt, any more.

+ Palm Beacher Lucille ‘Lovey’ Handelsman sits in Palm Beach County Circuit Court on June 6, 2017 in a preliminary hearing to

Her decision, supported by the couple’s three adult children, put in play the $500 million-plus real estate fortune the Palm Beach couple began building in the 1950s from their kitchen table in Brooklyn, N.Y. Besides the Palm Beach shops, their real estate holdings reach from Key West to upstate New York, with restaurants in Delray Beach and office buildings in West Palm Beach.

While tired of Burt’s verbal abuse, Lovey claims it was infidelity that spurred her to act. She contends that Burt not only fell in love with another woman, but he conspired with his alleged paramour — Fort Lauderdale attorney Jane Rankin — to siphon assets that rightfully belonged to her, her children and grandchildren.

Burt disputes Lovey’s characterization of his relationship with the 62-year-old Rankin. But the longtime family legal advisor, who often vacationed with the Handelsmans along with her husband, now figures prominently in the divorce.

In November, for instance, Suskauer ruled that Burt enlisted Rankin’s help to commit a “fraud on the court” by lying about the so-called discovery of a falsified document that Burt tried to use to strip his children of control of vast swaths of the empire.

“Burt now admits that Rankin’s portion of their coordinated story was materially inaccurate … (reinforcing) the court’s conclusion that the entire tale was an intentional fraud on the court,” Suskauer wrote in a blistering opinion.

+ Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Scott Suskauer will preside over the Handelsman divorce trial, which starts Monday, Feb. 5, 2018. (Lannis

Frustrated by the nonstop warfare, Suskauer for months has pleaded with the couple and their children to resolve their differences and divide their vast holdings without his help. But little progress has been made. In court papers filed last week, the venom was palpable.

“Burt is a classic megalomaniac,” wrote attorney Jeff Fisher, who is representing the couple’s children in their fight to make sure their father has no claim to property they now control from offices in White Plains, N.Y. “The adult children hope to see Burt crumble,” countered attorney Alan Kluger, who represents Burt.

While Lovey’s attorney, Joel Weissman, also had choice words for Burt, he is asking Suskauer on the opening day of trial to declare the marriage irretrievably broken. Then, he said, Suskauer can spend the next four weeks hearing testimony from real estate experts, accountants and appraisers to help him decide who should get what property, along with doling out personal items, including the couple’s much-fought-over shaving mug collection, valued at $1 million.

Lovey, who is crippled by arthritis and confined to a wheelchair, is generally in good health. But, at her age, time is of the essence, Weissman said. If the marriage dies before Lovey, under Florida law, she would be entitled to 50 percent of the assets, which she plans to pass on to her children and grandchildren. If Lovey dies before Suskauer signs off on the divorce, her share could fall to 30 percent, Weissman has said.

“The wife implores the court … to pronounce the parties’ marriage is irretrievably broken in order to assure the Wife her equitable distribution will not be jeopardized by any untimely death or illness,” Weissman wrote, repeating a request Suskauer has rejected before.

The term “equitable distribution” is the legal standard for how assets are divided in any divorce. But in this one, the attorneys and their clients are in vast disagreement about what it means. Further, each accuses the other of low-balling the value of the property they want in a ploy to get more than they deserve.

The Handelsmans’ Palm Beach County properties

Here are the locations of Burt and Lucille ‘Lovey’ Handelsman’s holdings in Palm Beach County, according to the Property Appraiser’s Jan. 1, 2017 valuation. They are valued at $160 million. (Zoom out to see the Handelsmans’ other properties in Lantana, West Palm Beach and Delray Beach.)

All sides agree that even if they all could agree on the values of scores of pieces of property, division will be complicated because in many cases ownership is split among the children, Lovey, Burt and others. The children and Lovey have insisted they won’t own property with Burt. There also are mortgages and other legal entanglements that have to be sorted out.

Fisher said an accountant Lovey has hired figured out a way to divide the property so she would end up with $69 million worth of real estate, Burt would end up with $68 million and the children would control the remaining property, which they have managed for years.

Since Burt long ago moved his office to Worth Avenue and focuses on the real estate jewels that are rented to various high-end retailers, such as Giorgio’s, Brooks Brothers, Ralph Lauren and Jimmy Choo, he could remain in control of most of that property, Fisher suggested. The children, meanwhile, are more interested in continuing their oversight of property in New York state, Delray Beach, West Palm Beach and Key West, where they own the property that is home to the famous Hog’s Breath Saloon.

+ Boxes of legal files sit stacked in a Palm Beach County courtroom June 6, 2017 during a hearing in the Handelsman

Lovey, Weissman said, should also be awarded the couple’s three-room apartment above shops on Worth Avenue, the family home in White Plains, N.Y., and a vacation home in the Catskills.

Contesting Lovey’s experts with experts of his own, Burt opposes many of the proposed land swaps. He has already filed separate lawsuits against his children, claiming they stole property from him.

Noting that it will be difficult to negotiate a 50-50 split, Kluger said Suskauer should keep in mind that Burt was the mastermind of the empire so should reap more reward — a contention both Fisher and Weissman vehemently dispute.

In making their cases, both sides turned to sports metaphors in last week’s filings.

To counter Burt’s claims that he built the real estate empire alone, Lovey’s lawyer invoked famed University of Alabama football coach Nick Saban and Miami Heat basketball coach Eric Spoelstra.

“If Nick Saban or Eric Spoelstra claimed that a championship victory was solely the result of their great coaching and had nothing to do with their ‘team,’ they would be the subject of scorn and ridicule and probably fired,” Fisher wrote. “Burt Handelsman shamelessly claims that the entire empire is his creation giving no credit to the decades of work by his wife, children and in-laws.”

Burt’s lawyer compared his client to Dorando Pietri, an obscure Italian runner who overcame paralyzing fatigue to win the marathon in the 1908 London Olympics.

“Like Dorando, Burt has shocked the world as well. … Like Dorando, Burt was unknown in his sector, but Burt was determined to race to victory,” Kluger wrote. “Like Dorando, Burt deserves to finish with dignity and grace.”

But in his lengthy description of Dorando’s historic achievement, Kluger failed to mention one thing: Dorando was ultimately stripped of his medal because he was assisted across the finish line.

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Buying West Palm Beach FL Real Estate? This Is How You Do It

For first-time house buyers, few things are as intimidating and exciting as owning your first piece of property. And even though it is a very liberating feeling, it comes with heavy financial responsibility and dedication. So, before you buy any West Palm Beach FL real estate, keep the following in mind.

1. Can You Stick To A Budget?

If you know yourself to be a loose cannon with money, either hire somebody who can limit you, or marry someone who will do it for free. Either way, house hunting means sticking to your budget, even when the agent is very persistent about the once in a lifetime offer.

Always remember that payments on a house go on for a very long time, and it’s a monthly installment you have to be able to afford.

2. Do You Have The Right House?

While West Palm Beach FL real estate is always a good investment choice, not every home is going to serve the purpose you need it to. Thus, you want to make sure it has enough bedrooms and space or does it come with that swimming pool you desperately want?

If you are going to buy a home, get one you really like and that fits in with your lifestyle.

3. Have All The Inspections Been Done?

Faulty wiring, pest infestations, these are all things you will only have a problem with once you start living in your new home. And that’s why you want to have it checked before you send over any money.

Get professionals to clear the house first. This way you’ll know future problems are new and, hopefully, won’t cause too much damage.

Yes, you are definitely choosing the right area to buy your home. It’s just a matter of working out the details and moving in.