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2008 Photos 

  • Winter 2008
    • Some folks from the Raytheon SCUBA club drove down to Homestead Bayfront Park for some camping and diving in February.  We took Bob's boat along with16 air tanks, 4 sets of dive gear, two tents, a gas grill, stove, lights  and 4 coolers of food and ice across Biscayne Bay to the Biscayne National Park Marina and Campground on Elliott Key.  I learned a few things about camping along the way (e.g. tent mesh must be at least 650 squares per inch to keep out no-seeums).  We had a great day diving on Saturday, with calm seas and warm, clear water.  Having fresh lobsters for dinner on Saturday night topped off a truly great day.  Unfortunately a front came through on  Sunday morning and the wind started blowing so we decided to come home without diving.

    • Chris and Sue spent a day on the boat in early March.  There was no plan except for relaxing and fishing.  For once the weather cooperated with 75 degree air and calm seas.  Chris finally managed to catch something other than a Grunt.  He's now a believer in live Pinfish.

  • Spring 2008

    • Greg and Chris had a perfect day on the water in late March.  With calm seas and warm breezes, we couldn't have asked for better conditions to kick off the local Gulf dive season.  Water temps at Indian Shores Reef were 71 degrees at the surface and 65 at depth.  A bit chilly for my tastes, but not unreasonable.  With the cooler water, there was plenty of "food" swimming around.  Schools of Amberjacks were especially abundant.

    • A few folks from the Raytheon SCUBA club headed out to the Blackthorn in April.  The Blackthorn is a 180-foot Coast Guard Cutter that collided with the oil tanker Capricorn near the Sunshine Skyway Bridge on January 28th, 1980.  The wreck is mostly broken into pieces now, but given its rich and dramatic history it's always a great dive.  We saw plenty of snapper and hogfish.  Bob saw a Spotted Eagle Ray and brought home a nice sized Grouper.  Tony even spotted a reef shark.  Our second dive was on a circular ledge called Mastodon Tabletop. 

  • Senior Prom

    • Amanda went to the Tampa Prep senior prom in April.  Several of her friends gathered at Iliona's house to get dressed and take some pictures.

  • Amanda's Graduation

    • Tampa Prep had their graduation ceremonies on Sunday June 8th.  We're all very proud of Amanda and all that she has accomplished in her high school career, graduating with Cum Laude and National Honor Society honors.  Doug, Sarah, Joshua, and Grandma Francis were in town to help us celebrate.  Amanda, we wish you the best of luck as you begin an important new phase of your life at the University of Florida.

  • Summer 2008

    • We took the boat down to Key Largo and spent a week diving and snorkeling this summer.  We stayed at the Key Largo Grande on the bay side of the island.  Amanda and Valerie each brought a friend along to share in the fun.  Thanks to Melissa and Erin for helping to make our annual Keys trip extra special this year.

  • 2008 Holidays

    • We made our annual trek up to North Carolina for Thanksgiving again this year.  My Mom decided to join us this time, so after a quick stop in Gainesville to pick up Amanda all five of us piled into the Expedition for the 11-hour trip.  We joined Karen, Keith, Nathan, Jason, Barb, Jim, and Claris (Keith's Mom), for a wonderful turkey day.  Unfortunately Amber had to stay home for this one, but we made sure we got some quality park time in before dropping her off in Venice to visit her own mother and step sister for the week.  This year's holiday movie was Quantum Of Solace, on Saturday some of us visited NC State with Valerie and the rest spent the day at an art museum in Charlotte.  We topped off the trip with a Manheim Steamroller Christmas concert on Sunday night.  Thanks again to the Poerschke and Korb families for their gracious hospitality.