By Dan Mearns

Special to The Sun

Florence Recklein always loved flowers. She remembered visiting the Peace River Botanical & Sculpture Gardens in Punta Gorda several years ago, during the first phase of construction, and longed to return to see all the flowering trees and plants in bloom.

Her opportunity came when she was selected to have a “bucket list” wish granted by Chelsea Place Senior Care. Florence, a client of Chelsea Place Home Care, lives with her daughter Linda Harkness in Punta Gorda.

“When we got the call that Chelsea Place wanted to take her on an outing to the botanical gardens, she was thrilled,” Linda said. “She felt like they were treating her and honoring her at the same time.”

Chelsea Place owner Kris Chana accompanied Recklein and her daughter, providing transportation and arranging for a tour of the gardens.

“It was an absolutely delightful experience,” Linda said. “Mother had a wonderful time.”

Chana videotaped the entire outing, from Recklein and Harkness’ house to the gardens and back. He subsequently presented Florence a zip drive of the video packed in a special wooden box.

He is now looking for other seniors Chelsea Place can help check off an entry on their bucket lists.

“Our objective is to make seniors’ wishes come true,” he said.

If you are a senior with a bucket list, or you know a senior with a bucket wish, you are invited to submit a nomination for The Bucket Wish, a new series sponsored by Chelsea Place Home Care.

Email or call 941-677-7233 to submit a nomination request. Please include your name/name of nominee, address, phone number, email, and a brief explanation of the nominee’s wish list item.

Nominees will be placed in order of receipt. Chelsea Place residents and their families are certainly eligible to nominate, but the nominations are open to the public.

Chana doesn’t ask people to tone down or localize their bucket list entries, but admits that there may be limitations depending on the request.

“We may not be able to make everyone’s full wish come true,” he said, “but rest assured, we’ll come as close as we can.

To view Recklein’s video, go to or search YouTube for “Ms. Flo visits the Botanical Gardens.”

To learn more about Chelsea Place and all it has to offer, visit


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