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.

  • September 15, 2020 12:05 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    Club member Pam Vernich and her 92-year-old mom are the owners of the 10th installation of the Tesla Solar Roof tiles on the East Coast of the US. It’s an installation at their farm in Maryland.

    On September 12, 2020, Pam discussed the fun and headaches in being one of the first clients on the East Coast to work with SolarCity / Tesla Energy during the four-year process. The installation went into service this May 2020.

    Pam provided the following Powerpoint presentation:

    Tesla Solar Roof

    Here's some screenshots:

    I want to thank Pam for sharing her solar experience.

    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

  • September 11, 2020 2:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

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

    One of our observant club members discovered an 8 terminal, version 3, Supercharger Station under construction at the Wawa at 116 N. Highway 27/441, Lady Lake, FL 32159.

    The location is not currently listed on Tesla’s official Find Us page displaying “Coming Soon” Supercharger Stations.

    Here’s a vicinity map:

    The Wawa is located at the intersection of County Road 466 (Lemon St) and US Highway 27/441.  

    Here is a Google street photo of the Wawa.

    I have drawn a red rectangle where I believe the charging spaces are going. The street the photo was taken from is US 27/441. 

    You can see the construction of the 8 charging terminals.  The box on the right is the type of main switchgear that Tesla is currently using.  The distinctive blue fencing is consistent with what Rack Electric uses. They are an electrical contractor that Tesla frequently uses for Supercharger installations.

    Update as of August 14, 2020.


    Progress is being made in pouring the foundations of the 8 charging terminals and installing bollards.


    Some of the signage has been installed.


    Under the tarps and protective tent sits the version 3 Supercharger cabinets.


    Here is a close-up of one of the two Supercharger cabinets.


    Rack Electric, Tesla' electrical contractor, appears to be doing most of Tesla's Supercharger installations in Florida currently.


    Each box contains two version 3 Supercharger charging terminals.


    One of the version 3 Supercharger charging terminals.  The cabling is slightly thinner than the earlier version 2.


    A close-up of the terminal specifications. "RAINPROOF"


    A close-up of the foundation of a charging terminal.

    Update as of August 19, 2020.


    The charging terminals have been installed. It appears that the utility transformer may also have been installed. 

    Update as of August 21, 2020.


    It looks like all the necessary equipment has been installed except the meter. 


    Two Version 3 Supercharger cabinets, the main switchgear and the meter cabinet.



    Version 3 Supercharger cabinet nameplate specifications.



    The utility transformer has been set on pad...


    ...but I don't think the secondary cables have be connected yet.



    The meter cabinet has been installed awaiting the meter.  As you can see from the label, this installation received final electrical inspection yesterday, August 20, 2020. So, we should expect this Supercharger station to be operational any day now.



    Eight Version 3 charging terminals awaiting meter and final check by Tesla contractor prior to being energized.

    Update as of August 25, 2020.


    The power company is working on the connections at the utility transformer. It looks like the secondary cable to the main switchgear has been connected and they are working on the incoming primary connections to the transformer.  The meter cabinet front panel has been removed, but to the left of it we can see the meter ready to be installed. We are very close to be operational.

    Update as of September 11, 2020.

    The Supercharger Station is partially open.


    Although the navigation screen currently display a temporary closure, it has been reported to me that only one of the Superchargers is down.  So, as shown in this photo there are some charging terminals that are operational and some that are covered.


    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • September 11, 2020 12:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    During these challenging times, it can be tough to sort out fact from fiction when it comes to COVID-19.  On September 10, 2020, two of our club members, who are also practicing physicians, participated in a Virtual Meetup to make presentations and answer our questions. 


    Dr. Lottenberg discussed the most recent treatments and his first-hand knowledge of taking care of some of the sickest COVID patients in Palm Beach.

    Dr. Jibawi discussed how we can stay safe and healthy during the pandemic.

    Each doctor provided a PowerPoint presentation.  If you have the software, click on the links below.

    COVID 19 Update From a Frontline Healthcare Worker September 2020

    COVID 19 How to stay safe and still enjoy your life


    Dr. Lottenberg in full Personal Protective Gear.


    Dr. Jibawi, aka Dr. AJ.

    Kate has a question.


    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

  • September 09, 2020 10:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On September 8, 2020, members of Florida Tesla Enthusiast enjoyed a fun time at the Mar Vista Dockside Restaurant & Pub. The weather cooperated, and we were seated, socially distanced, outside under the stately Buttonwood trees.

    Mar Vista is one of the most historic properties on Longboat Key.  It was built in 1913 by Rufus P. Jordan, who platted the town of Longbeach, as Longboat Key was known in those days. The site initially housed a bait shop and was a stopping off point for out of town fishermen in the 1940s.  

    In the 1980s, Ed Chiles bought the property. He is maintaining the "Old Florida" feel of Mar Vista, preserving its history and charm. Ed owns a string of local seafood restaurants and supports several environmental initiatives.  He is a Tesla owner, and his Beachhouse Restaurant hosts a Tesla Connector.

    Mar Vista was an ideal place for our club to resume in-person activities in a safe, socially distanced manner. 

    Here are some photos of this delightful restaurant.

    Anthony Cabrera, the Assistant General Manager greeted our group.


    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

  • September 03, 2020 1:28 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


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

    A member of the Tesla Motors Club (TMC) forum located a permit for the “Coming Soon” Lakeland Supercharger Station. The site is located at the Wawa at 4320 US Hwy 98 N, Lakeland, FL 33809.

    The permit doesn't specifically state that this is a Supercharger.  However, the fact that Tesla is an applicant for the "Installation of Electric Vehicle Charging Station" at a Wawa in Lakeland makes this virtually certain that is is the Supercharger Station planned for Lakeland.

    Here is the vicinity map:


    Update as of July 22, 2020.

    Construction at the Lakewood Supercharger has begun with the staging of Tesla equipment. I received the following photos from a helpful Tesla owner visiting the Wawa hosting the new Supercharger. It looks like two version 3 Supercharger cabinets have been delivered to power eight terminals.



    The two previous photos I believe are of the version 3 Supercharger cabinets.  


    Rack Electric is Tesla's "Go-To" electrical contractor for many Supercharger installations.

    Update as of July 25, 2020.



    I'm informed that my initial guess regarding the location of the future charging stalls was incorrect.  Above is the correct location.


    Update as of July 29, 2020.



    The two previous photos show the main switchgear on the right and one of the two version 3 Supercharger cabinets in the center.

    Update as of July 31, 2020.


    Progress is coming along.  Here we see five of the seven back-in spaces and one pull-in space.  Also shown are the two version 3 Supercharger cabinets.

    Update as of August 7, 2020.

    The next series of photos show work being done to install a utility transformer.  There is already a utility transformer installed, but there is a concrete pad awaiting the installation of a second utility transformer.

    It is possible that Lakeland Electric, the local power company, plans to install two medium-sized transformers to power this installation, or the existing transformer may be to power the Wawa.  


    The existing utility transformer can be seen to the right.


    Here is a view of the utility transformer shown in the background. The concrete pad in the foreground is for a second transformer.  The smaller conduits closest are for high voltage incoming primary cable.  The larger conduits are for the 480 volt secondary cable.  The small pipe with the weatherhead is for metering wire.  So far, members taking these photos report that there is no sign of a meter cabinet yet. The meter equipment will probably be installed in the area around the hole between the concrete pad and the existing transformer.

    Another view of the two version 3 Supercharger cabinets.  For a total of 2 MW of capacity.

    I am not sure the function of this small box.  It may be a Master Controller Cabinet to monitor the Supercharger Station remotely.


    Updated August 19, 2020.


    The utility transformer has been installed.


    Here is the same transformer on the left in relation to an existing utility transformer which may be for the Wawa's electric service.


    This hole between the two utility transformers.  I believe we can see the metering conduit going from the utility transformer for the Supercharger to the concrete post. On that post is what appears to be an existing meter cabinet for the other transformer. Tesla's contractor will probably install another meter cabinet on the post above the conduit for the Supercharger Station.


    Update as of August 22, 2020.


    It looks like my comments about the previous photo  was correct.  The Tesla contractor has installed the meter cabinet for the Supercharger on the same post as the meter for the Wawa electric service.  I am pretty sure that this transformer is for the Wawa.



    This photo shows the new Supercharger transformer on the left and the existing transformer for the Wawa on the right.

    Update as of August 31, 2020.


    Meter was just installed in meter cabinet today, August 31, 2020. This station could be energized at any time.

    Update as of September 3, 2020.


    This station is  operational.

    Thanks.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • August 30, 2020 2:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The Busy Bee Convenience Store and Gas Station, nearing completion in Panama City Beach, will host a future Supercharger Station

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

    In October 2019, a kick-off ceremony was conducted in Panama City Beach to celebrate the construction of a 15,500 square foot Busy Bee convenience store and gas station. Along with other company and local government officials was Elizabeth Waring, Principal and Chief Executive officer of Johnson & Johnson, Inc., the parent company of the Busy Bee franchise.  

    Recently a member of the Tesla Motors Club (TMC) forum met Ms. Waring. Since Busy Bee currently has 12 Superchargers at their Live Oak location, he asked her if they were going to install Superchargers at the Panama City Beach location. She said yes and indicated that the Busy Bee would open soon, but it was going to be a couple more weeks before the Superchargers were up and running since they experienced some delays in permitting due to COVID-19.  (The person taking the photo above indicated that there was no sign of construction of the Supercharger yet.  So, it will probably take more than a couple of weeks before the Supercharger is operational.)

    The Busy Bee is located at 14100 Panama City Beach Parkway, Panama City Beach, Florida 32413.  

    It will include 32 fueling stations at 16 pumps, and a full-service convenience store including a quick-service restaurant. It will operate on a 24/7 basis once it opens.

    Here a vicinity map:


    The location is about an hour’s drive from the DeFuniak Springs Superchargers and about three hours from the Tallahassee Superchargers.

    The location isn't currently displayed on Tesla's Find Us map. However, to further confirm this information, another member of the TMC forum located a permit for the Supercharger Station.  The permit reads “Tesla to Install Electric Vehicle Charging Station” and doesn’t explicitly state “Supercharger.” However, since Busy Bee has hosted other Superchargers, I think we can reasonably assume that this is going to be a Supercharger Station rather than a Tesla destination charging station.


    Above is a permit was issued for a Tesla Electric Vehicle Charging Station.

    Update as of June 24, 2020.

    Here are some photos of the Busy Bee Station.  The station and store is expected to be open this summer.  Construction of the Supercharger Station has not yet broken ground.




    Update as of July 26, 2020



    The two photos above show that Tesla has broken ground on this Supercharger Station.  The installation is adjacent to the parking lot next to the Guthrie's Chicken Fingers restaurant.


    Another view of the conduit work that will go under the Supercharger cabinets. There's a relatively small 112 KVA utility transformer in the background that feeds the Busy Bee . 


    Updated as of july 29, 2020.

    Seven future back-in charging terminals

    One pull-in future charging terminal.

    Update as of August 8, 2020.

    The following photos were provided by a member of the Tesla Motors Club forum.

    Charging terminals being readied for installation.

    Utility transformer concrete pad in foreground, main switchgear and Supercharger cabinets in the background.  The  wooden post between the pad and the switchgear will probably be used to mount the Supercharger station's meter.

    Main switchgear on left, two version 3 Supercharger cabinets on right.

    Tesla contractor pulling in cables between charging terminals and Supercharger cabinets, doors open.

    Update as of July 9, 2020.


    To the right of the Supercharger cabinets we can see the contractor working on the main switchgear through the hole in the charging terminal.


    A view of the pull-in charging spaces along side two back-in spaces.

    Update as of August 12, 2020.


    Utility transformer delivered to the site.



    This is a high voltage connection box.  Underground cable loops in and out of it.  The primary cable from the  smaller existing utility transformer that is serving the Busy Bee will looped into the connection box and out to the new larger utility transformer that will feed the Supercharger Station.

    Update as of August 16, 2020.


    Correction: The utility transformer and meter in the foreground are probably for the service to the Busy Bee. (I originally thought it was for the Supercharger.) The second utility in the background will be powering the Supercharger Station. The green box on the extreme right under the backhoe arm is the connection box in the previous photo.  


    Updated as of August 19, 2020.


    This photo shows the utility transformer in the background in the previous photo.  It serves the Supercharger Station. 



    A view of the back-in stalls.


    One pull-in stall.



    The meter cabinet for the Supercharger Station doesn't yet have a meter installed in it.  The permit says that the final electrical inspection was approved on August 18, 2020, so apparently we are waiting for Gulf Power to install the meter and Tesla's contractor, global Technical Solutions, to test the operation. I'm guessing this could happen at any time.


    Update August 23, 2020.

    Members of the Tesla Motors Club forum reported that as of August 19, 2020, a meter had been installed, but as of August 22nd the station has not been energized.


    A good photo of the Panama City Beach Supercharger Station. Hopefully it will be operational very soon.

    Update as of August 28, 2020.

    This Supercharger Station is now operational.


    Updated as of August 30, 2020.


    With this impressive charging rate, there's no question that this is a Version 3 Supercharger Station



    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

  • August 26, 2020 2:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On August 25, 2020, we enjoyed an informal Virtual Meetup with club member Pete Borras, owner of The TEZLA Studio and First Impression Premier Auto Detail.  Through the marvels of technology, Pete joined us from Cancun, Mexico, where he was trying to enjoy a well-earned respite from work.

    Pete is a very industrious Master Detailer and Paint Correction Specialist. He has a studio in Sarasota and his studio in Tampa is less than a mile from the Tesla Service Center.  Pete graciously let us interrupt his vacation to field questions and provide tips regarding how to preserve the appearance of our Teslas.

    When he returns from vacation, you can reach him at (813) 846-3891.


    Here are a few screenshots of some of the participants.


    Pete Borras, owner of The TEZLA Studio and First Impression Premier Auto Detail



    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

  • August 25, 2020 7:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    I want to thank Denise Grant for putting this event together on such short notice and keeping everyone safe.  Denise is both an Event Coordinator in our Southeast Region as well as a Track Instructor.  I want to also thank Rafael Santoni, the founder of Tesla Owners South Florida, for getting the word out to his members to join us.  I should mention that our clubs are the only clubs in Florida officially recognized by Tesla.

    The following article was written by Denise describing the fun.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    email: lfchanin@gmail.com

    Website: teslaownersflorida.org

    Facebook: Florida Tesla Enthusiasts

    Each time is just like the first!  Having driven performance cars on the race track since the late '80s, there's nothing like the first time you pull off the track.J The smiles and exuberance are so contagious! You're filled with adrenaline and a sense of accomplishment! "I never thought I could do that!!!" "Wow…that was crazy!  Did you see….." "we were going 125mph" "that was so much fun!!" "Now I know how those NASCAR guys feel."

    Driving on the race track never disappoints!  On Saturday, August 22, 2020, our club had a scheduled track time at Homestead - Miami Speedway.  This event was a fundraiser for the Speedway's charity for kids.  For $20 per car, our group was "paced" around the impressive oval for about 9-10 laps.  Who was that guy who got the extra lap in…LOL????

    With 20 Teslas and about 40 excited Tesla owners, we gathered at Sonny's BBQ in Florida City at 11am. Since the Speedway is a distance for most folks, this is the right place to Supercharge and have refreshments. Sonny's is only providing outdoor service with covered patio and tent tables.  The service, as usual, was quick and offered a spot to gather our groups together.  At the track, we were screened for COVID-19 and instructed to wear face masks when outside our cars.

    Fortunately, the track was a bit behind on the schedule.  This allowed a couple of cars who were delayed, to arrive in time for our 12:30 session.  After signing waivers and collecting money, (thanks for all the cash, it made the process much easier), we were directed to pit lane.

    When our pace car led us out, we hit the track at over 70mph….this was going to be a fast session  Our first lap was tentative …as we learned how to make the left turns while leaning over towards the left. LOL, That was an interesting attitude J Then it was everyone driving where and how they chose!  Some drove high on the banking, and some stayed low.  Some folks hit 125 mph, and some remained comfortable around 80. 

    No matter what you chose to do, the result was the same, "Wow, that was so much fun!" Finally, since no masks are needed in the car, what made this even more special was seeing so many genuine smiles on people's faces on the other side of the car windows!

    We are looking forward to the next opportunity to drive the Speedway! Thanks to all who came out on the short notice! Thank you to Larry for getting the info out to all the Tesla Owners in the South region and helping organize.

    Take Care and stay safe!

    Denise Grant

    Here's a great video produced by Rafael Santoni, also known as YouTuber TesLatino.

    Here are some photos:

    Denise Grant, Event Coordinator for Florida Tesla Enthusiasts, aka Tesla Owners Florida, with Rafael Santoni, founder of Tesla Owners South Florida.

    All masked up at Sonny's BBQ.


    Caravaning to the Speedway.



    The winning ticket!



    A little after 1:00 pm Denise leads the group onto the track with the temperature registering 100 degrees.





    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 or a Virtual Meetup, please click on the Join Us menu item at the top of the page.

    Larry Chanin

    President, Florida Tesla Enthusiasts


    Stay safe.


  • July 28, 2020 12:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On July 26, 2020, several Florida Tesla Enthusiasts Club Members gathered to attend a drive-in movie theater experience inside The Hardrock Stadium. While attendance was small, it was greatly appreciated by the attendees.  One club member brought her parents along who have been indoors for an extended period due to COVID-19 precautions. They expressed their excitement to finally be able to get out of the house and ready to enjoy the event from the comfort of their own Tesla Model X!

    We enjoyed a showing of the movie Beetlejuice and everyone enjoyed the experience very much while following CDC guidelines for COVID-19 precautions. After the show, everyone shared that merely the ability to be able to drive your car into the Hardrock Stadium was worth the price of entry! The movie was the cherry on top!

    There are currently showings playing until August 2, at which time the drive-in theater experience is planned to end. We encourage you to check out other movie times and dates if you missed this opportunity and go! All proceeds from these events will benefit the Miami Dolphins Foundation Food Relief Program.

    Many thanks go to Event Coordinator Renzo Torrenga for organizing this event.


    Driving into Stadium Video


    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 or a Virtual Meetup, 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

  • July 27, 2020 4:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On July 26, 2020, a group of about two dozen club members and guests with 17 Teslas gathered at the Port Orange Supercharger parking lot in the morning for another scenic drive and In-Car activity. The route took us up the beautiful A1A Atlantic Ocean Highway to the Ormond Scenic Loop and Trail.

    I want to thank Event Coordinator Tom Siceloff for planning this event and leading the caravan.

    Thomas, one of our members from Ocala, became a bit of a celebrity by bringing his Midnight Silver Metallic Model Y. I was one of the paparazzi taking plenty of photos.

    After driving the beautiful Ormond Scenic Loop & Trail, one thing was abundantly clear, Teslas were ideally suited for this natural marvel where the posted signs said “Drive Quitely.”

    Here are some photos:

    Here's Thomas, the owner of a Model Y and an immediate celebrity.


    Here's Thomas again with me caught in the act of being the paparazzi.

    My wife, Mary Ellen, is either doing her very best impression of the Village People, or is letting us know that there's a Model Y in attendance.


    Here's some photos of those in attendance.










    The next set of photos show us lining up for the silent caravan.



    The next series of photos is driving through the Ormond Scenic Loop.



    While waiting at the Port Orange Supercharger to charge for our trip home, we were greeted by a curious onlooker.


    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 or a Virtual Meetup, 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

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.

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