Plus: New multiuse recreation trail
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Lakeland Regional Health

Special Edition

This newsletter is brought to you in partnership with Lakeland Regional Health.

10 local ways to show some love this February
Rotating images: Woman with a stroller running in the annual Promise Run race, theatre curtains for a performance, table of colorful books at a local bookshop, two people Salsa dancing, a pickleball paddle and ball on a court, and a couple cooking a meal on the stovetop in their home.
From pickleball and salsa dancing to comedy and cooking, here are a few ways to show yourself love this month. | Photos by LALtoday and Pexels
February in Lakeland isn’t just for roses from Bloom Shakalaka and chocolates from Publix (although, it’s for that, too). With this month celebrating both Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month, it’s a time for self-love, social connection, prioritizing your well-being, and trying new things.

Here are 10 local ways to show yourself (and your crew) some love this month.

Plan an active date

Start daily sunset strolls to get in the groove for one of this month’s many active events, like the annual 2024 Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center Promise Run.

Dr. Mark Mines, Cardiologist at Lakeland Regional Health’s Jack and Tina Harrell Institute for Advanced Cardiovascular Medicine, says heart health is a marathon, not a sprint. “I love to get outside and go for a brisk walk,” he says. “You don’t need to be a professional runner or athlete to get in a great workout.”

Feeling adventurous? Grab your partner and test your reflexes under the twilight at SUN KAVA’S Pickleball After Dark series, each Wednesday at 11 p.m. (Feeling extra bold? Join the group for pre-game karaoke.)

Or get footloose with friends (or solo) and the heart-pounding rhythms of Salsa y Bachata dance class, held select Wednesdays in February (including Valentine’s Day itself).

Try something creative

Laughter can be some of the best medicine for your mental health — and it’s great for breaking the ice with a new date. Catch some live comedy at The Yard on Mass’ Stand Up Friday on Friday, Feb. 16 at 8:30 p.m.

Or flex your creative and social muscles at Open Mic Second Saturday, a free night of performers, poets, spoken word artists, musicians, and more, at Quinteassence on Saturday, Feb. 10, 7-11 p.m.
Which mammal listed below has the biggest heart?
A. Elephant
B. Giraffe
C. Whale
D. Hippo
Lakeland Regional Health
News Notes
  • Solo or with your sweetie, stroll and shop from 100+ vendors at the Valentine Night Market in downtown Lakeland this Saturday, Feb. 10, 5-9 p.m.
  • The 2024 Florida Strawberry Festival kicks off Thursday, Feb. 29 and runs through Sunday, March 10 in Plant City. Headliners include Cody Johnson, Flo Rida, Foreigner, The Beach Boys, and more. See the full rundown of strawberry food items available at the festival, alongside rides, exhibits, and entertainment.
  • City of Lakeland crews have begun the seven-month project to construct a multiuse recreation trail on Cleveland Heights Boulevard from Eastway Drive to Westover Street. The inside northbound lane will be closed to traffic during construction; southbound travel should not be impacted.
  • Construction begins this month on a project to improve the water quality of Lake Bonny. The city will install a nutrient-separating pollution control device at an existing drainage outfall to remove sediment and trash from the stormwater flow before it enters the lake. The project is expected to be completed within three months.
  • Lakeland Regional Health will host its free EmpowerHER Heart Event on Saturday, Feb. 10 (and there’s still time to sign up). Attendees will enjoy free heart health screenings, an invigorating Afro-fusion fitness class, a calming yoga class, heart health education, and more. Register online to reserve your spot.
  • February is National Cancer Prevention Month, and Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center encourages patients to discuss their family history with their primary care physician to learn which screenings for cancer prevention they should get (and when). Learn more about the innovative treatments LRH’s expert oncologists are using for breast cancer, mammograms, and pancreatic cancer.
  • The Kelly Recreation Complex offers Women’s Self Defense Classes each Saturday, led by an expert instructor with a background in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The series of eight, one-hour classes is designed for women ages 15+ to enhance personal safety, elevate confidence, and reduce the risk of becoming a target. Learn more and register.
3 active events on our radar this February
5 adults smiling for a photo at the the Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center Promise Run.
Runners pose for a picture at the Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center Promise Run. | Photo by Lakeland Regional Health
Here are three big ways to get your heart pumping this month:

1. 2024 Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center Promise Run
  • Annual walk and run to benefit Lakeland Regional Health Hollis Cancer Center
  • Saturday, March 2
  • Frances Langford Promenade in downtown Lakeland
  • $34+
2. 2024 Polk Senior Games
  • Two-week series of Olympic-style sports and games for men and women ages 50+
  • Saturday, Feb. 24-Saturday, March 9
  • Locations vary throughout Polk County
  • $10-$35
3. 20th Annual Rotary Twilight 5K
  • Scenic twilight run around Lake Hollingsworth, ending by Common Ground Playground (race beneficiary)
  • Friday, Feb. 9, 7-9 p.m.
  • Lake Hollingsworth Park
  • $20-$35
Lakeland Regional Health
Lakeland Regional Health

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