February is American Heart Month, and Feb. 2 is National Wear Red Day, an occasion for people to wear red to raise awareness about heart disease. Heart disease is the leading killer of American women, causing one in every four deaths, according to the federal Centers  for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition, the American Heart Association says a woman dies from cardiovascular disease approximately every minute. I know those are scary figures, but knowledge and taking care of yourself can help you survive.

Warning signs for women can be different from men’s. Pain or discomfort in one or both of your arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach can alert you of a potential problem. During your next doctor’s visit, ask them to explain the symptoms so you will be educated about them—it might save your life. You can also learn more at the association’s website, heart.org or goredforwomen.org.

Speaking of hearts, Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14) is when we express love with the giving of flowers, sweets and cards. Affectionate symbols include hearts, Cupid and the color red. In ancient Rome, the festival known as Lupercalia was held Feb. 13-15 to celebrate early spring, fertility, ancestors, love, and the pairing off of women with men by lottery. In early Catholicism, Feb. 14 marked an annual feast in honor of the martyr St. Valentine, who was executed for his faith on that date. During the centuries since, the coincidental occasions became linked.

My fond memories of Valentine’s Day include my father bringing gifts to my mom and my siblings. My husband, Frank, always worried about what to give me. I liked cards, so he spent a lot of time picking out just the right card and would wait until I went to bed so the card and present would be on the table when I woke up on Valentine’s Day.

The present would usually be a Precious Moments figurine with a special meaning or a nice piece of jewelry. Because the restaurants were so busy, I would make his favorite meal at home. After dinner, we would dance by candlelight. I sure miss those times as he was an excellent dancer. He gave me beautiful memories that I will always hold in my heart.

Our 16th Annual Butterfly Run is Feb. 4 at Tradewinds Park. I hope to see some of you who signed up for the Mayor’s Fitness Challenge there. On Feb. 16, kids will be delighted by the movie “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” playing at the Community Center (1100 Lyons Road) band shell.

Last, but not least, is our 16th Annual Butterfly Festival, Feb. 24, 1-8 p.m. at Sabal Pines Park. This year’s feature band is Tusk, a Fleetwood Mac tribute band, and the night ends with a fireworks display. Parking will not be available at Sabal Pines, but you may park at Monarch High School and the Recreation Complex on Sol Press Boulevard and shuttle over.

You can find out more about our events on our website (coconutcreek.net) or our social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube (CreekTV) and LinkedIn.