Palm Beach and Broward Youth Go the Distance with Pop Warner Football and Cheer

The 2018 season has been an especially exciting one for the youth football players and cheerleaders in Boca Raton, Florida.  The Boca Braves, a non-profit Pop-Warner youth league, has had four of their football teams make it to the Pop-Warner Superbowl playoffs this season, and all three of their cheer squads are advancing to the Southeast Regional Pop-Warner Cheer Competition in Orlando at the end of November.
This past weekend, their Junior Varsity football team played  in the second round of Superbowl playoffs at Tropical Park in Miami at 4 pm.  While some Palm Beach and Broward leagues receive city funding, the Boca Braves rely on registration fees, fundraising and the support of local organizations to pay for travel costs, field permits, referees, uniforms, and equipment.  With over 35% of their players receiving full or partial scholarships to cover registration, funding needs continue to be a challenge.
“This league does more than coach football and cheer,” explains Mark Sainmervil, President of the Boca Braves.  “We teach discipline, sportsmanship, and the importance of teamwork.  Plus, youth sports give our children a much-needed outlet.”
To support the Boca Braves, consider donating to their GoFundMe page, or visit BocaBraves.com to inquire about sponsorship and volunteer positions.
About the Boca Braves:
Boca Braves Pop Warner Youth Tackle Football & Cheerleading is a non-profit organization that serves almost 150 of Palm Beach and Broward County youth aged 5 to 15 years old. The league seeks to provide fun athletic learning opportunities for children while emphasizing the importance of academic success.  Specifically, Pop Warner seeks to familiarize players and spirit participants with the fundamentals of tackle football, cheerleading, and dance. Pop Warner strives to inspire youth, regardless of race, creed or national origin, to practice the ideals of sportsmanship, scholarship and physical fitness as reflected in the life of the late Glenn Scobie “Pop” Warner.

Halloween Happenings for Kids

There are lots of Halloween events to take the kids to this weekend and the days surrounding Halloween.

The West Boca Target at 441 is hosting Paw Patrol Trick or Treat on Saturday, October 27th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Put on your costume and rick or treat through the store. Watch the new Paw Patrol episode.

The Shoppes at Loggers Run is having its 9th Annual Halloween Spooktacular on October 28th from 11 am. to 2 p.m. There will be a costume runway parade, magic show, character appearances and more. Trick or Treat around the plaza. You can even bring your dog!

Trick or Treat at Delray Markeplace on October 29th, 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. Kids 10 and under. Pumpkin decorating, balloons and face painting.

Haunted House! at the Glades Road Library Branch on October 29th at 6 p.m. Ages 5 & up. Call 561-482-4554 to preregister.

BEHIND THE SCENES WITH STUDENTS AND PARENTS OF CREATIVE HEART DANCE STUDIO!
COME TRY A CLASS FOR FREE!

Creative Heart Dance Studio teaches dance with creativity, passion and love. We offer recreational dance, unlimited class packages, family packages, Master Classes and Competitive Dance. Call us at 561-419-7290 or check out our website: https://creativeheartdance.com/

Located at 8221 Glades Road in the plaza with the International Jewelers Exchange and the Boca Black Box.

Twas the Night Before Halloween at the West Boca Library Branch on Tue, Oct 30, 3:30 p.m. Wear your costume, and come for Halloween stories, a game and a craft. Grades K-5. (60 min.) Call (561) 470-1600 to preregister.

Peek-A-Boo! at the West Boca Library Branch on
Wed, Oct 31, 10:30 a.m. Come in costume or just as you are for a not-so-scary Halloween story. We’ll also sing some of our favorite songs and fingerplays. Ages 1-2. (30 min.) Call (561) 470-1600 to preregister.

Wear your favorite costume and go trick-or-treating at Boca Town Center on Wednesday, October 31st from 5pm-7pm.

 

 

 

West Boca Girl Fight and Phony Outrage

Image from the fight in South County Park

Last week we shared a Facebook video of a fight in South County Regional Park. The video had been posted by Shakeel Munshi and a reader tagged us in a comment.
The video shows his daughter being hit by two or three other girls while several other kids watch. Mr. Munshi’s post claims that she “was getting bullied … because she was Muslim.” In his original post (before he edited it) he also claimed that it happened at West Boca High School, that his daughter was wearing an anti-bullying t-shirt, and that she did not fight back.
Mr. Munshi’s Facebook video now has over 2.7 million views. It went viral because of his lies and that led to a surge of phony outrage from around the world. We received numerous comments, negative reviews, threats, etc. from just about everywhere. The City of Boca Raton and their police department were wrongly targeted by this mob, even though the incident happened outside city lines and had nothing to do with them. The Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office and the school district were also besieged by the mob.
The father’s lies contributed to all of this. First of all as we learned from numerous sources and now confirmed by the Sheriff’s investigation, this had nothing to do with religion. The Sheriff’s office sent out an update this morning:

PBSO deputy met with West Boca Raton High School officials and confirmed the identity of all the suspects involved. The suspects and their families have been interviewed. All participants agreed the fight was over “a boy” and “a video that was circulated”. All parties AGREED to meet and to fight and a specific location and time. PBSO Deputy is preparing paperwork to charge the suspects involved with Simple Battery. Once complete, the investigation will be submitted to the state attorney’s office. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE OF A HATE CRIME.

It should be noted that generally the police and schools are required to protect the privacy of minors. We do not expect that they will publicize the kids’ names, the specific charges filed against them, nor the results of any court proceedings or school discipline. It is also unclear whether the “victim” will also be charged since the evidence indicates she agreed to meet and fight and there is video evidence of her fighting.
Among other lies, the father’s claim that she was wearing an anti-bullying t-shirt was obviously false. In the video you can easily see that she’s wearing a Bulls Football t-shirt. The West Boca High football team is known as The Bulls.

Munshi wearing a Bulls Football t-shirt

He has since edited his post to remove that claim.
He continues to maintain in his post that his daughter did not raise a hand to fight back: “She didn’t picked up a hand because don’t want to fight back.”
This is also a lie as demonstrated in a video showing a different angle of the fight:

If you look at Munshi’s video post again, you can see that the video was edited. It starts after the beginning of the above video so you don’t see her fighting back. And it also leaves out a portion between when his daughter is on the ground and gets back up. We still do not have a full video of this incident so we don’t know what really happened – and neither does the horde of trolls, social justice warriors, etc.
Another lie was the original claim that it happened at West Boca High. Anyone familiar with the school would recognize from the video that it was not on school grounds. We are told this happened in nearby South County Regional Park but we still haven’t gotten a straight answer as to where this was in the park. And his claim that all girls were from West Boca High appears to be inaccurate as at least one of the other girls is reportedly a student at Olympic Heights High School.
Mr. Munshi even misled us about his own location, offering to meet with us at his home in West Boca. But from an NBC Miami report he wasn’t even in the country at the time.
We have published a number of teen fight videos over the past few years. None of them got this much attention, but none of them made phony claims of racism or religious bias.
Some of our sources indicate that Ms. Munshi was bullying one or more of the other girls in the video. At the same time we have another source that tells us one of those other girls has a history of misconduct. Again, we don’t know what the truth is. And neither does the unruly online mob.
One key ingredient to the video’s virality is the depiction of Ms. Munshi as a completely innocent victim. Any suggestion that she was at all responsible for anything that happened, regardless of its truth, was met by a rage from the online mob.
The simple reality of this incident is that it wasn’t much different from the other fight videos we’ve shown. It does not appear that Ms. Munshi was seriously injured. There was no report that she was taken to a hospital or even that she needed to see a doctor. The “simple battery” charge mentioned by the Sheriff means no serious injuries. Had there been serious injuries the charge would have been aggravated battery.
One big difference noted by many is that three girls were hitting Ms. Munshi, rather than it being a one-on-one fight. Everyone agrees that this was wrong. Everyone agrees that the fight itself was wrong. But any questions raised about Mr. Munshi’s lies or the “innocent victim’s” role led to false claims that the questioner supported violence. This is, of course, nonsense. It is a common ploy for political partisans of all stripes to use (or manufacture) an innocent victim in order to support whatever agenda fits their goals.
What’s particularly disturbing to us is how this incident has painted West Boca High kids as racist or prejudiced. We know a lot of kids in West Boca including the area high schools and younger kids. It is our general experience that they are almost entirely unbiased when it comes to race, religion, LGBTQ issues, etc., and certainly less biased than many adults in the community, in the country, and around the world.
The biggest social issue they confront is the stark contrast between rich and poor that one sees in Boca Raton, with some kids living in multi-million dollar mansions in gated communities while others live in trailer parks. The kids seem to handle that well too. There’s also the gifted vs. non-gifted classification in the elementary and middle schools, which translates into Honors and AP classes for the gifted kids and regular classes for the non-gifted. Again in our experience the kids handle this pretty well.
It should be noted that some in the online mob asserted that West Boca News was biased in some way, in particular biased in favor of the Sheriff or the school district. Anyone who actually follows us knows that we have had significant disagreements with both over the past several years.
Our two most popular videos on the West Boca News YouTube channel are of confrontations with PBSO:


We have also been publicly critical of the school district, especially Superintendent Avossa.

Thanksgiving Week Activities for Kids


Friday Night at the Museum on November 17th, 6 to 9:30 p.m. at the Science Explorium in Sugar Sand Park. 7-12 year olds. $20 residents, $25 non-residents. Pizza served.
Blades Giv7ng on November 18th at Drop In Action Sports Complex. 11 a.m. $25 admission. All ages.
Thanksgiving Fun for Everyone! on November 18th, 10:30 a.m., at the Glades Road Branch. Stories, stories, songs, crafts and a short film. Preregister. 561-482-4554.
Turkey Toddler Time on November 18th at 10:30 a.m. at the West Boca Library Branch.
Sparkle Night on November 18th at Delray Marketplace. 5 to 7 p.m. Caroling, crafts, music and more. Free
FAU BAND-O-RAMA on November 19th at Mizner Park Amphitheater. Music starts at 7 p.m. Free.
Prepare for the Great Escape! at the Science Explorium in Sugar Sand Park.  Ages 6-12. November 20th, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. $25 for residents, $31.25 for non-residents.
Mother Nature & Me: Thanksgiving with the Animals on November 21st, 10:30 a.m., at Daggerwing Nature Center. Ages 2-5 with guardian. $4 per child. Call 561-629-8760 to reserve your spot.
Parachute Playtime on November 21st at Glades Road Library branch. 10:30 a.m. Ages 3-5. Preregister. 561-482-4554.
Afternoon Crafts on November 21st, 2:30 p.m., at the West Boca Library branch. Ages 3-9.
Teens Escape Room at the Glades Road Library Branch on November 21st at 6 p.m. Grades 6 & up. Preregister. 561-482-4554.
Fishing Fun on November 22nd at Daggerwing Nature Center. 10 a.m. Ages 8+. $10 per participant. Call 561-629-8760 to reserve a space.
Annual Holiday Tree Lighting on November 22nd at Mizner Park Amphitheater. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Free.
 

West Boca Halloween Activities


October 20th
Shriek Week at Sugar Sand Park, Runs through October 28th. Haunted House, Live Shows, Film Fest, Games, and Rides.
October 21st

Halloween at the Boca Y, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Costumes, decorations and activities. Y members: one bag of candy per person, Non-members: $5 adult, $15 child.
Fall Festival at The Shoppes of Loggers Run, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hay rides, Kids magic show, games and crafts, scavenger hunt and character appearances. Free.
Pumpkin Patch, October 21st through 31st at United Methodist Church, 9087 Glades Road, Boca Raton.
October 23rd
Haunted House Rehearsal at Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Bring your most creative and spooky ideas for our Haunted house held October 30th. Grades 6 & up. 45 minutes. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 24th
Learn the Thriller Dance! at the Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Grades 6 & up. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 25th
Hallo-tween Spooktacular, Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Listen to scary stories and write your own! Ages 8-12. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 27th

Hoot ‘N Howl, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Daggerwing Nature Center. Free Admission. Children of all ages with adult supervision. Games and crafts, learn about nocturnal animals, Night time boardwalk.
Trick’Em Treat’Em Costume Party at Patch Reef Park. 10 a.m. to Noon. Ages 2-5. $5 per child. Munchies, mayhem, games and more.
October 28th

Halloween Bash at Drop In Action Sports Complex.
Trick or Treat Tales, 3 p.m., Glades Road Library. Enjoy stories, songs, games and a craft about Halloween with a costume parade to follow. All ages. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
Peek-A-Boo!, West Boca Library, 10:30 a.m. Not so scary Halloween stories, dancing and singing for ages 1-2. Call 470-1600 to preregister. Also, October 30th and 31st at 10:30 a.m.
Celebrate Frankenstein, West Boca Library, 2:30 p.m. Grades 6-12. Learn about Mary Shelley’s infamous monster and his portrayals thru cinema, books and folklore. Call 470-1600 to preregister.
October 30th
Haunted House!, Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Our teens will scare you in our walk-through Haunted House. Ages 5 & up. 60 minutes.
Halloween Crafts, West Boca Library, 3:30 p.m. Ages 3 & up. Wear a costume or just come as yourself and make a Halloween themed craft while listening to fun Halloween music.
Trick or Treat at Delray Marketplace, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Free pumpkins and Family Fun. Kids 10 and under can trick or treat at the shops, decorate a pumpkin, enjoy face painting, music, a trackless train and more.

October 31st
Preschool Monster Mash, West Boca Library, 11:30 a.m. Gather with other ghouls, goblins, heroes, princesses and just regular kids for a monstrous time of Halloween stories, music and a craft. First come, first served. Ages 3 & up. Limit 20.