Public News

This Public News section of our website is a blog visible to the public and our members. It describes club events and news relevant to Tesla and electric vehicle owners living in or visiting Florida. The blog has a Comments feature that we made available to the public for a couple of months. Unfortunately, we were inundated with spam and inappropriate comments. As a result, we are forced to limit comments to our membership. Non-members can still view our news articles and the remarks submitted by our members, but we regret that they won’t be permitted to leave their own comments.

  • October 12, 2020 5:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Jess Schultz with the Chamber & Economic Partnership in Ocala participated in the ribbon-cutting ceremony.


    The Electrified Garage Open House on October 4 was a huge success despite early torrential downpours. The weather cleared, and an estimated 200 “masked” and socially distanced guests welcomed Electrified Garage to Florida. The Ocala Chamber of Commerce was on hand for the official ribbon-cutting ceremony, complete with a champagne toast!

    Masked and socially distanced -The Villages Tesla Club held their monthly meeting ahead of The Electrified Garage Open House. 



    This huge tent came in handy during the rain.


    Complete with food truck.


    A caravan awaiting to head out to head out to The Electrified Garage.

    Backstory

    In 2016, Rich Benoit, an IT manager, and Tesla enthusiast was curious if he could re-build a totaled Tesla. In doing so, he created his YouTube channel, “Rich Rebuilds” with videos about buying, repairing, and mining Teslas for spare parts. Fast forward to the present, and now Rich is an Internet sensation with over 700,000 subscribers and more than 2 million annual views.

    In 2018, Rich partnered with a former parts manager for Tesla, Chris Salvo, to open up their repair shop, The Electrified Garage in New Hampshire. Chris is also the founder of EV Tuning, an online store that sells parts and accessories to electric vehicle owners.

    Joining Rich and Chris as a co-owner of The Electrified Garage and staring in Electrified Garage videos with Rich and Chris is Chad Hrencecin.  Chad is a former Senior Service Technician with Tesla. 

    Now, Chris moved to Florida, joined our club, and opened their second Electrified Garage in Ocala.

    They are located at 1829 NW 10th St, Ocala, FL 34475.

    Telephone: 352-354-9006

    Rich explains, “The reason why we exist here is anything that your Tesla Service Center would offer, we could offer that service as well.  We are trying to break through and become a third-party resource for EV repair, not only Teslas.”

    Click here for a 5-minute video.

    At this open house, club members were able to engage owners Chris, Rich, and Chad, see rare early Tesla Roadsters, a Model 3 Lamborghini EV conversion, witness some wildly wrapped Teslas from SIGNATURE Customs Wraps & Coatings, and interact with other vendors.  There was a food truck, a huge tent for outside activities and the Tesla Orlando Store provided test drives. 


    Rich Benoit, Chris Slavo and Chad Hrencecin


    Even “Elon“ came out for the big day!

    Angelia Link, president of The Villages Tesla Club and our club's Event Coordinator in the Central Region, did her usual outstanding job of assisting in the arrangements.

    Here's a collection of photos:


    Angelia Link, event coordinator extraordinaire.

    Rachelle Stone, our club's Event Consultant, assists in distributing door prizes.


    Club member Mike Mogilewski, the owner of SIGNATURE Customs Wraps & Coatings brought these striking Teslas. We had a recent Virtual Meetup with Mike and he announced that he would be partnering with The Electric Garage to open another studio here.


    The crew at Rich Rebuilds and The Electrified Garage. Rich Benoit, Chad Hrencecin and Chris Slavo.

    The previous two photos are of a rare R80 Tesla Roadster.

    The previous two photos are of a Lamborghini being converted to an electric vehicle using Tesla Model 3 parts.

    A close up of SIGNATURE Customs Wraps'  work.

    A lucky door prize winner.


    Are you a Tesla enthusiasts and feeling a bit of cabin fever during the pandemic?  If you're not a member, but would like to participate in our next Scenic Drive, Virtual Meetup or Socially Distanced outdoor event throughout the state, please click on the Join Us menu item at the top of the page. 

    If you live in The Villages, I recommend that you join both clubs. Click here for The Villages Tesla Club.


    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 09, 2020 6:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Please scroll down to the bottom of the article for the most current status.

    In July, we reported on a state initiative to expand electric vehicle fast-charging infrastructure. As part of the Volkswagen "diesel-gate" settlement, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection reviewed applications,  selected 27 projects and awarded them funding for electric vehicle charging stations. Although Tesla did not receive funding, Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) was awarded a $500,000 grant to build a large electric vehicle (EV) charging mobility hub in downtown Orlando. Tesla will be collaborating with them.

    The site will feature up to 22 Level 3 charging stations, including 16 Tesla Supercharger terminals and six universal chargers with a capacity of up to 350 kW.  It will be built on OUC-owned land at 129 W Robinson Street near I-4 (next to Ace Café Orlando).

    The project is underway and will be completed in 2021.


    See vicinity map:

    Here is OUC's press release.

    OUC-led Partnership Drives Downtown Orlando Electrification with $500,000 Grant to Build EV Charging Station

    Update as of October 9, 2020.


    Although OUC states that this project is underway, I couldn't find a permit and they haven't broken ground yet.  Workmen, probably surveyors, are onsite.


    If you live or work in the area, please take some high-resolution photos of the construction progress and email them to me. 

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 09, 2020 9:45 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    In July, Jerome Guillen, President of Automotive at Tesla, solicited suggestions for a service center in the Naples/Fort Myers area.  A couple of months later, the Fort Myers Service Center opened.

    Now, Jerome is asking for suggestions for a service center in the South Orlando area.

    He is looking for vacant commercial properties previously used for automotive or zoned for automotive uses with at least 15,000 square feet of space.

    If you know of a suitable property, please email the details to me and I will forward a message directly to Jerome.  

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 08, 2020 3:09 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On October 6, 2020, we enjoyed an informal Virtual Meetup with club member Mike “Mojo” Mogilewski, owner of SIGNATURE Customs Wraps & Coatings.


    SIGNATURE Customs Wraps & Coatings is home to Florida's Tesla vehicle customization experts. Throughout the past 8 years, they have customized hundreds of Teslas, offering wraps, coatings, suspension, and interior enhancements. Their 5,000 square foot climate-controlled facility is located at 1300 Stirling Rd, Dania Beach, FL 33004, just around the corner from the Dania Beach Service Center.

    You can reach them at (954) 292-1298.

    Mike informed us that he will be opening up another studio in Ocala in a partnership with Rich Rebuilds and the Electrified Garage crew.

    Are you a Tesla enthusiasts and feeling a bit of cabin fever during the pandemic?  If you're not a member, but would like to participate in our next Scenic Drive, Virtual Meetup or Socially Distanced outdoor event throughout the state, please click on the Join Us menu item at the top of the page.

    If you are a club member who owns or manages a business that is relevant to Tesla owners, and would like to be a featured speaker on a Virtual Meetup, please email me.  

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 04, 2020 11:51 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    During the weekend of September 25, 2020, thirty-two club members and their guests enjoyed Hawks Cay Resort, Villas, and Marina located on Duck Key in the Middle Florida Keys. This 60-acre, tropical paradise is truly a unique resort with: 

    • Five Pools & Saltwater Lagoon
    • Dolphin Connection™
    • Beach Sunbathing alongside the Lagoon
    • Full-Service Marina with 85 Boat Slips
    • Offshore & Inshore Fishing Charters
    • 8 Tennis Courts
    • Fitness Center
    • Water Sports, including Kiteboarding, Kayaking, & Parasailing

    The weather cooperated. The few times it briefly rained, it was mostly at night.  Due to the pandemic, we had to curtail indoor group events and the group sunset cruise. However, on Friday, we gathered, socially distanced, at the Tiki Grill Bar for some libations.  That was followed by a private group dinner, socially distanced at the covered patio of the Sixty-One Prime restaurant. While there, we enjoyed live entertainment and a Roaring Twenties costume competition.  A couple who were guests of one of our club members won.

    Many thanks go to Rachelle Stone for making group arrangements with the resort.

    Here are photos featuring a lot of smiling faces: 



    Are you a Tesla enthusiasts and feeling a bit of cabin fever during the pandemic?  If you're not a member, but would like to participate in our next Scenic Drive, a Virtual Meetup, or socially distanced outdoor event, please click on the Join Us menu item at the top of the page.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 02, 2020 4:34 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    I have been looking for a Supercharger Station in Fort Pierce because we discovered a permit application for the Canoe Creek Service Plaza that was incorrectly titled Fort Pierce Service Plaza.  I figured that the application for Canoe Creek may have been cut and pasted from another application. 

    So far, I haven’t found a permit application for the Port St. Lucie – Fort Pierce Service Plaza, but I did locate a permit for a Supercharger Station at a nearby Wawa.  It's address is 5575 Okeechobee Rd, Fort Pierce, FL 34947.

    Here's a vicinity map:


    This proposed Supercharger Station is strategically located near the intersections of I-95, the Florida Turnpike and State Road 70 (Okeechobee Rd)

    Here's a Google view of the Wawa parking lot:



    Work has started. It looks like there will be 8 charging terminals.  The four boxes with the arrows pointing upward house two terminals per box.  Based on this photo, I believe that the station will be located in the red rectangle on the previous image. I believe that the Supercharger cabinets will be installed to the extreme left of the photo.

    Update as of October 2, 2020.


    This Supercharger Station is now operational.




    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • October 01, 2020 2:29 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Please scroll down to the bottom of the article for the most recent updates.

    There has been a lot of recent interest on the subject of an imminent opening of a long-waited Naples Service Center.  In July, Jerome Guillen, President, Automotive at Tesla, got our attention. He posted the following solicitation on LinkedIn asking for suitable spaces for service centers, specifically referencing Naples, Florida.


    Yesterday, after receiving a lot of rumors, I located a building permit for the Naples Service Center.  It is actually in Fort Myers at a former AutoMatch USA location at 8900 Colonial Center Dr., Fort Myers, FL 33905.

    Here is an excerpt of the permit.

    Here is a vicinity map:


    The new Service Center is located less than a mile from the Supercharger Station at Dani Dr.

    Update as of September 11, 2020.



    The Service Center doesn't have Tesla signage yet, but it is reported that crews are working inside the facility.

    Update as of September 15, 2020.




    Update as of September 18, 2020.








    Our latest rumor is that they will be open for business on Monday, September 21, 2020.

    Update as of September 20, 2020.

    Our article was referenced by Phil Fernandez with the Naples Daily News.

    In the Know: What's Elon Musk up to in Southwest Florida, your questions and more on eastern Collier development.

    Update as of September 22, 2020.

    The Service Center is now open.

    Update as of October 1, 2020.


    During these Coronavirus times the customer lobby is a bit Spartan. ;-) 


    If you live or work nearby, please send me some high-resolution photos of the interior of the facility.

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • September 20, 2020 10:07 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The editor of Supercharge.info, the unofficial website that tracks Supercharger installations, has located another active permit application for a future Supercharger Station near Jacksonville. 


    The ID portion of the permit application show that this is a Tesla application and the Electrical Contractor has been selected.


    The Overview portion of the permit application provides a description of the work which is not entirely accurate.  As can been seen, the application calls for two Supercharger cabinets to power 8 charging terminals.  That means that this will be a Version 3 installation.  The description states "INSTALL (8) 120 KW TESLA CHARGING POSTS", but Version 3 charging terminals are rated at 250 kW.

    This station is not currently listed on Tesla’s official Find Us web page.

    The Supercharger Station will be located at the Winn-Dixie at 703 Chaffee Rd S, Jacksonville, FL 32221.

    Here is a vicinity map:


    The red arrow shows the location of the future Supercharger Station. To the extreme right is the location of the existing Jacksonville Supercharger Station.



    Here's the Google aerial shot of the Winn-Dixie parking lot. Someone has posted a pin for the future Supercharger, but it doesn't mark the exact location.  

    Update as of September 7, 2020.

    Construction has not only started, but it appears that this Supercharger Station is nearly operational.  


    Here is the precise location of the Supercharger Station in the Winn-Dixie parking lot.  There are five charging stalls located toward the top of the red rectangle with an additional three located on the bottom. 



    This photo was taken north of the site looking south toward the entrance of the parking lot.  The five charging stalls are in the foreground and the three stalls are in the background.


    This image is portion of the previous photo zoomed to show the two Version 3 Supercharger cabinets, the switchgear and utility transformer.

    Update as of September 15, 2020.


    This photo was taken north of the site looking north.

    Update as of September 20, 2020.

    The navigation systems are displaying that this Supercharger Station is partially open. 

    Updated as of October 13, 2020.

    This station is fully operational.

    People working or living nearby are asked to periodically visit the site to take high-resolution photos of the construction progress and send them to me.

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • September 19, 2020 6:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Mary Bonnin of Panama City Beach visited the Busy Bee’s Tesla Supercharging station on Monday to charge her Tesla Model Y. [NATHAN COBB/THE NEW HERALD]

    Club member Mary Bonnin was featured in the article linked below in the Panama City News-Herald.

    Panama City Beach gets its first Tesla supercharging station at newly opened Busy Bee

    I also want to thank Elizabeth Waring, president, and CEO of Busy Bee, for hosting the Supercharger Stations at the Busy Bees at  Panama City Beach and at Live Oak.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts


  • September 18, 2020 4:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    One of the members of the Tesla Motors Club forum found a permit application for a Supercharger Station at the Canoe Creek Service Plaza on the Florida Turnpike.  The title of the project is a bit confusing because instead of referencing the Canoe Creek Service Plaza, it names the Fort Pierce Service Plaza. Apparently, some overworked individual cut and pasted information from another document and forgot to edit it.

    Assuming the details are correct, the application indicates that Tesla, in collaboration with the Florida Department of Transportation, plans to install 16 Version 3 charging terminals at the Canoe Creek Service Plaza.

    Here is a vicinity map:

    Here's a Google street view of the Service Plaza:


    I'm guessing that the Supercharger Station will be sited  on the north end of the parking lot.  That would be to the left of this photo.


    If anyone is visiting this service plaza, if you see any signs of construction, please take some high-resolution photos and send them to me.

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

Florida Tesla Enthusiasts, Inc. is an enthusiast club and 501(c) 7 non-profit organization. It is registered with the Florida Department of State and is also registered to do business in Florida as Tesla Owners Florida.

The use of the trademarked name "Tesla" in our club names is strictly for the nominative purposes of description and identification as granted by the Lanham Act for fair use of trademarks. Its use is in no way intended to imply any business affiliation with Tesla or its subsidiaries.

Our club is an official partner of the Tesla Owners Club Program. While it is recognized and sanctioned by Tesla through the program, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts, a/k/a Tesla Owners Club of Florida, is an independent enthusiast organization and is not affiliated with Tesla or its subsidiaries. TESLA, MODEL S, MODEL X, MODEL 3, POWERWALL and the “TESLA,” “T” and “TESLA and T Flag” designs, and certain other marks, are trademarks or registered trademarks of Tesla Motors, Inc. in the United States and other countries.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software