Largo leader

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Largo leader
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Largo, FL
Tampa Bay Newspapers, Dan Autrey - Publisher
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United States -- Florida -- Pinellas -- Largo
27.862364 x -82.786566


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Article redacted by publisher on 7/21/2011.

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Local experts will dish out advice during a free hurricane preparedness expo Saturday at the Largo Public Library. ... Page 2A.The time is now to get ready for hurricanes a The Communications and Marketing department unveiled a new logo, tagline and future look for downtown on July 10 during a City Commission work session. The department was tasked to lead an interdepartmental team to develop and implement a Downtown District identity that highlights sustainability, public safety and community pride. “This was originally an initiative in the Strategic Plan to create connections between downtown Largo and employment, education and recreational hubs, and promote the area as one district,” said Kate Oyer, Communications and Marketing manager. One of the rst steps was to de ne its boundaries, so, on a color-coded map, the team City commissioners were pleased July 10 with the direction of a project to enhance the triangular piece of property at the southwest corner of West Bay Drive and Seminole Boulevard. The project, which has a $500,000 budget, is intended to be a landmark feature to further establish the identity of downtown. “Although this area is located in kind of a downtown busy intersection with a lot of cars, we think it’s got a lot of potential to be used as a high focal area and a kind of gateway element to the downtown,” said Hunter Booth of Booth Design The other end of downtown features a project that aims to make the area more accessible to those using the Pinellas Trail by beautifying the area with new access bridges, overhauling the existing pedestrian overpass and improving open space for activities on both sides of the trail. Improvements include landscaping, parking opportunities, way nding and signage, ADA changes, new benches, fountains, picnic tables and information kwiosk. Economic Development Manager Teresa Brydon said design for the project, which spans Volume 39, No. 42 July 19, 2018 Features Beaches . . . . . . . . . . . .11A Bridal Guide . . . . . . . . . .12A Business . . . . . . . . . . . .8A Classi eds . . . . . . . . . .4-7B County . . . . . . . . . . . .6-7A Entertainment . . . . . . . .1-3, 8B Just for fun . . . . . . . . . . .2B Largo . . . . . . . . . . . .2-5A Outdoors . . . . . . . . . . . .9A Pets . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7A Police beat . . . . . . . . . . .7A Viewpoints . . . . . . . . . . .10ACall 727-397-5563 For News & Advertising By CHRIS GEORGETampa Bay NewspapersLARGO – After endorsing a 13 percent increase last year, city commissioners unanimously voted July 17 not to raise the property tax rate this coming year. City leaders decided to advertise the current rate of 5.7413 mills, or $5.74 for each $1,000 in taxable value, on the Pinellas County Property Appraiser’s Truth in Millage notices, which will be mailed out Aug. 20. The move means commissioners can levy a tax rate lower than the proposed rate, but cannot exceed it. “This millage rate provides the necessary revenue to make progress toward the city’s strategic initiatives and goals in accordance with the city’s strategic plan,” OMB Manager Meridy Semones said. Because of a 7.46 percent spike in property values, keeping the rate flat would mean someone with a homesteaded single-family home with a taxable value of $92,000, which is roughly the average in Largo, would pay about $17 more next year. “The growth in taxable value, along with holding the millage rate flat, generates an additional $1,780,000 in property tax revenue, which is an increase of 7.36 percent,” Semones said. She said other factors that went into the proposed tax rate, which would require five of seven commission votes, included growing the fund balance in the Property tax rate won’t increaseRate can still be lowered, but city leaders say keeping it flat prepares for the future GOOGLE EARTH Looking to spruce up D O W N T O W N DOWNTOWN West Bay Drive Central Park Largo High School Largo Medical Center 4th Avenue NWClearwater-Largo Road Seminole Blvd. Series of projects aims to establish area’s identity, transform it from a pass-through into a destinationIt’s a safe bet that many residents don’t even know downtown Largo exists. Aside from a small sign near the corner of West Bay Drive and Missouri Avenue, there are no distinguishing characteristics that separate the area from the rest of the city. Largo leaders hope to change that with a series of projects aimed at establishing downtown’s identity and making the area more welcoming to residents, businesses and visitors. Here’s a look at the projects that include a branding campaign, plaza enhancements and improved access to the Pinellas Trail. LARGO CITY COMMISSION 8th Avenue SW14th Street SW By CHRIS GEORGE  Tampa Bay Newspapers 1 1 1 1 2 2 3 3 2 2 3 3 Downtown Largo DistrictCentral Park District Medical Arts District BRANDING CAMPAIGN PLAZA ENHANCEMENTS WEST BAY TRAILHEAD See BRANDING, page 4ASee PLAZA, page 4ASee TRAILHEAD, page 4A See TAXES, page 3A Shown is one of three designs being proposed for the property at the southwest corner of West Bay Drive and Seminole Boulevard. Among the features proposed for the project is a midblock crossing underneath the overpass. VACATIONDESTINATIONDid you hit the road this summer for your annual summer vacation? Did you sail the high seas or explore the pyramids of ancient Egypt? Submit your photos to for a chance to be featured on TBN’s new travel page each month.ENTERTAINMENT Plenty of stars coming to townRascal Flatts, Kim Walker-Smith, Chicago and REO Speedwagon are among the musical acts visiting the Tampa Bay area this weekend. Read about them and more headliners coming to town in Diversions. … Page 1B. LARGO Highland the place to be this weekendThe Highland Family Aquatic Center will host Here We Glo on Friday, July 20, and a ve-year anniversary party Saturday, July 21. Here We Glo will include lasers, black lights and LED lights as participants splash down slides, while the anniversary party will feature free hot dogs, apple pie from Village Inn, free massages and a prize wheel. … Page 4A. COUNTY Beach access law making wavesA new law passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott is creating controversy as some owners of private beaches move to restrict access. Scott signed an executive order July 12 urging the state’s counties to protect public beach access. … Page 6A. BEACHES Cruise boat sets sail for John’s PassJohn’s Pass will soon have another major draw for visitors. The Calypso Breeze, a cruise boat operated by Starlite Cruises, could soon begin offering afternoon lunch and evening dinner cruises, seven days a week, from John’s Pass Village. … Page 11A. VIEWPOINTS Debra SaundersPresident Trump’s supreme choice. … Page 10A.Here comes the bride Check out the July edition of TBN’s monthly Bridal Guide for wedding tips. ... Page 12A. More tax talkClearwater seeking its rst millage rate increase in a decade, while Belleair of cials aim to hike rate up to 6.5 mills. PAGE 3A MANICURE w/SHELLAC & HOT STONE PEDICURE 39 Exp. 8/15/18 SHAMPOO/CUT/STYLE 25 20% OFF NEW NAILS CLIENTSCANNOT BE COMBINED WITH ANY OTHER OFFERS. 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2A Largo Leader, July 19, 2018 City BriefsRegistration now open for Citizens’ AcademyLARGO – Largo residents are invited to get a behindthe-scenes look into city government at this year’s Citizens’ Academy. Participants will experience hands-on demonstrations, eld trips and learn what is involved in running a city. Elected of cials and City leaders will host sessions designed to provide attendees insight on how local government works. Registration is now open for the free 10-week course scheduled for Monday evenings from Sept. 17 through graduation on Dec. 4. Classes generally meet from 6 to 8 p.m. Applications are available at and must be submitted by Sept. 3. For more information, call City Clerk Diane Bruner at 727-587-6710 or email seeks feedback with new budget balancing appLARGO – The city of Largo hopes to spark engagement with its new online community budget input app, Balancing Act, designed to make the budget process more accessible. With Balancing Act, residents can learn about the city’s General Fund budget, adjust revenues and expenditures to create a balanced budget, while providing feedback to city Leaders on budget decisions. Engage in the budget process by choosing to increase funding for programs, decreasing taxes, trimming expenditures or sharing comments all while balancing the city budget. “We are excited for Largo to provide the Balancing Act application to our community, so they can more easily be a part of the budgeting process,” said OMB Manager Meridy Semones. “We look forward to community engagement to help determine what our future Largo will look like.” To launch the app, visit Feedback received through Balancing Act will be reviewed by City Commission and city leaders in the next few months. The community is also encouraged to engage further by attending public hearings or emailing, Southwest complexes offering after-school careLARGO – The city of Largo’s Recreation, Parks and Arts Department is now offering after-school care at Southwest and Highland recreation complexes. During their time in after care, kids will rotate every 30-45 minutes through fun activities, such as karate, tennis, STEM, cooking, yoga, Zumba, archery, shing, crafts and more. Children also can take advantage of homework help. Transportation to facilities is available for the following schools: To Highland Recreation, 400 Highland Ave. NE.: Ponce, Belcher, Fuguitt, Pinellas Preparatory Academy and Pinellas Academy of Math & Science. To Southwest Recreation, 13120 Vonn Road: Mildred Helms, Anona, Oakhurst and Plato Academy-Seminole. Register to reserve a spot. The cost is $75 each week and Early Learning Coalition funding is accepted. For more information, visit or call Highland at 727-518-3016 or Southwest at 727518-3125. Photo by JIM LAYFIELDA polydamas swallowtail feeds on a red salvia in a backyard butter y garden in Largo. The butter y is the only swallowtail that doesn’t have a tail.Butter y garden party LARGO – A free hurricane preparedness expo will be held Saturday, July 21, from 9 to 11 a.m., in the Jenkins Wing of the Largo Public Library. Learn from Largo Fire Rescue how to be prepared before, during and after the storm with information including disaster kits and where to nd shelter. Meteorologist Mike Clay of Bay News 9 will open up the event, followed by preparedness tips from a panel that includes members of Largo Fire Rescue, Pinellas County Emergency Management, Largo Police Department, Pinellas County Animal Services and the Florida Division of Emergency Management. Business vendors also will be on hand to answer questions related to preparation, disaster restoration and property maintenance. 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Largo 3A Leader, July 19, 2018general fund and preparing for the anticipated passage of an additional homestead property tax exemption in November. She said passage of the constitutional amendment that would increase the homestead exemption by $25,000 would cost the city at least $740,000 annually in property tax revenue beginning in scal year 2020. The tax rate, which is currently the third-highest in Pinellas County behind St. Petersburg and Belleair, also would keep the city on track of achieving a 20 percent fund balance that the City Commission has deemed a priority. The $1.78 million boost would lift the fund balance to 19.1 percent by the end of scal year 2019, and up to 21.8 percent by the end of FY 2023. City Commissioner John Carroll said Hurricane Irma proved how important those funds can be. “I think we’ve taken all the right steps to ensure we have an adequate fund balance on hand,” he said. “Anyone who thinks we could get by on a much lower number has never lived through a natural or legislative disaster with unfunded mandates attached, so I’m proud of the efforts we have there.” The rst public hearing on the tax rate is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4, at City Hall.In other news Commissioners voted 7-0 to approve the renewal of the city’s group medical insurance plan from Oct. 1 through Sept. 30, 2019, with Public Risk Management of Florida Health Trust for $10 million.  Commissioners approved on first reading to apply for a 20-year loan not to exceed $62 million from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection State Revolving Fund program to nance construction of wastewater system capital improvements.Clearwater, Belleair seek tax hike MILLAGE RATE DISCUSSIONS TAXES, from page 1A TBN StaffCLEARWATER – City leaders got their first look at the next fiscal year’s budget, and for the rst time in nine years they must decide whether or not to approve a millage increase. City Manager Bill Horne presented its preliminary 2018-19 operating and capital improvement budget during a workshop at City Hall on July 16, and asked council members to adopt a tentative millage rate of 5.9550 mills, an increase of eight-tenths of a mill from last year’s rate, which was 5.1550. “This is the first millage rate increase we have proposed to you in nine years,” Horne said. Horne said the city’s budget has seen growth in the last few years, including the opening of an additional recreation center, staff to support it, new enhanced services, and a significant sport tourism effort. “We have also made signi cant investments and commitments toward capital improvement projects, supporting Imagine Clearwater, the Philadelphia Phillies and Ruth Eckerd Hall,” he said. These changes, coupled with the probable impact of Amendment 1 in October, resulted in this year’s general fund revenue analysis, which differs greatly from the 2016 analysis, Horne said. “To offset these significant impacts, and sustain a nancially sustainable future, we have worked to bring forward a budget that required departments to focus their current resources to maintain their current operations or fund changes in the way they do business,” Horne said. Since early budget discussion in May, Horne said significant changes have been made, including the resolution of the security resource of cer quandary with zero impact to the budget. City property values have increased by 9.8 percent, which was above preliminary estimates. “While the efforts we took this budget season did much to reduce the intensity of a tax rate increase, an increase is still necessary to achieve financial sustainability,” Horne said. – LOGAN MOSBY, Tampa Bay NewspapersBelleair considers increase to 6.5 millsBELLEAIR – Belleair residents can expect a tax rate increase in the next scal year from 5.9 to 6.5 mills. Based on the average cost of a house in the town, $395,000, the property tax increase would be $226. For homes assessed higher than the average then the tax increase would be greater; for homes less than the average the increase would be less. Commissioners unanimously agreed to the new rate at their July 17 meeting. It is possible the rate could be lowered depending on discussions at two budget hearings in August. By law the rate cannot go any higher than the 6.5 mills agreed upon at the meeting. The preliminary budget for the new fiscal year revealed at the meeting and showed a deficit of $67,000. Town officials forecast that the deficit will only last for two years. Once the Belleview Place development is finished, the new tax revenue should put them into the black. Belleview Place is the new townhouse/condo development on the property of the old Belleview Biltmore Hotel. The budget outlook for 2018/19 shows an income of just over $6.2 million with expenditures in excess of $6.3 million, thus the de cit. The meetings when the budget will be discussed and potentially adjusted will be on Aug. 7 and Aug. 21. Both meetings will begin at 7 p.m. – BRIAN GOFF, TBN Correspondent 071918 070518 071918S 071918


Group, which created three concepts that include a landmark structure and hardscape and landscaping improvements. Concept No. 1 includes a large graphic Largo sign, locally sourced solar panels for site amenities, a green screen with custom backlit glass medallions, interchangeable panels for public artwork and a meandering path along the existing canopy trees. The proposal proved to be the commission’s least favorite, with Commissioner Curtis Holmes citing safety concerns. “I would have a problem with that because of the distracted drivers,” he said. “No. 1 is very busy when you have lights turning color at night.” Concept No. 2 features the word Largo on a large pillar with raised lettering, various height green screens around the pillar, a retaining wall and annual or perennial arrangements. Concept No. 3 includes a punched-steel Largo panel rising from a wedge wall, locally sourced solar panels for site amenities, a triangular green screen with custom backlit glass medallions and a meandering path. Booth added that both proposals created a safer condition for pedestrians by taking the sidewalk farther off Seminole Boulevard and engages walkways and pathways to get people away from the street. The safety aspects helped make the two concepts more appealing to commissioners. “Mayor Brown is a big advocate, as am I, of moving the pedestrians away from the curb,” Commissioner John Carroll said. “… It just makes a safer walk.” Planning Manager Rick Perez said the public has also provided positive feedback about the connectivity of the meandering path toward the rear of the two concepts. Concerns have been raised, however, about the size of the pillar in concept two and whether it con icts with the city’s new sign ordinance. Perez said staff were looking into it and raised the possibility of amending the code to create an exception for monuments. Holmes said he preferred the second concept, but was worried about the size of it. “No. 2 is probably the tamest,” he said. “If I came down and I only had a choice of the three of those, I would vote for No. 2. But even at that, you do have the issue of the size of it. I don’t know about us changing an ordinance to please us.” Brown, who said he preferred the second and third concepts, had previously expressed concerns about the cost and future use of the project, but said the three proposals had put his mind at ease. “The designs that were given to the commission on Tuesday were really just an entry marker and some enhancements for pedestrians and that stuff is well worth the investment and is, frankly, probably usable even if we end up connecting to Central Park through that triangle,” he said. Perez said he anticipates bringing nal design to the commission’s Sept. 11 work session, but residents can still provide feedback on the project by visiting Largo Leader, July 19, 2018decided the district, represented by blue, would be from Seminole Boulevard/Missouri Avenue west to 14th Street Southwest and from Eighth Avenue Southwest north to Fourth Avenue Northwest. It is situated between the Medical Arts district to the west, represented in red, and the Central Park district to the east, represented in green. Each of those areas are represented in downtown’s new logo, which aims to signify movement and activity. “One of the things that inspired us and the creative team was a journey,” Oyer said. The abstract logo features red, blue and green circles encompassed by white lines representing a path or journey as visitors explore the area. Oyer said the colors also could be used for way nding signs in the future. “We do want people to go to one business and then go to the next business and then go to the next business and keep moving around downtown,” she said. The logo also features a new tagline: “You Have To Come See,” with See being an acronym for shop, eat, explore. Oyer said another main goal of the campaign was to “provide visually recognizable elements to help de ne boundaries, so that when you drove into the area you visually recognize there was something different going on here.” To distinguish the look, Oyer said the team wanted to introduce high visibility, large-impact elements, including way nding signs, modern architecture, new landscaping, hardscaping, streetscaping and smart technology. Oyer said the landscaping would include plenty of green with owers to make it warm and welcoming, and decorative hardscaping additions that promote sustainability, such as nature-themed shade structures. “We want things to be functional, not just build things to build them,” she said. Since the area is small, she added it would be a great place to introduce smart technology, such as solar-powered lights along the streets, LED crosswalks, public wiand electric car chargers. New buildings would also have a different aesthetic, she said. “We thought we had a unique opportunity downtown, inspired by the Ridge Road development, to go a little more modern down there,” she said, referring to a layered look with mixed materials like woods or brick. Mayor Woody Brown said July 13 he was pleased with the plan and that new development meant the time was right to promote the future of the district. “I think now is the time to get ready for a real marketing effort,” he said. “We’re probably not ready for all the aspects of what they are talking about doing yet in downtown, but we will be soon.” Since there are few anchor companies and it’s still growing, he said the city will have to pick and choose how it implements new features, such as way nding signs, but he thinks the campaign could be a catalyst. “I think it will help stimulate the growth that we’re seeing now and help to kind of speed up private investment in the downtown,” he said. Oyer said the next step is getting public feedback through an online survey residents can take at and by showing off the ideas to local businesses and groups. Early reviews on social media about the logo have been mixed and polarizing. Facebook comments show most people either love it or hate it and are concerned that it’s too abstract and confusing. “What I do appreciate is the strong commitment to the public feedback, because we sit on the commission and we have employees here, but the city belongs to them,” City Commissioner John Carroll said. “Whatever we do here will be still in place after we’re gone.” from Washington Avenue Southwest to Fourth Avenue Northwest, is 90 percent complete but construction will likely have to be moved back to April 2019. “FDOT made some changes in the way that they were going to disperse some of their funds, and we had been awarded grant funds,” she said. “… But those grant funds were pushed back, so what happened is we kind of reined it in and slowed it down a little bit.” Brydon added that changes have been made to the project since receiving public input in 2016. They include changes to the bridge design for the overpass over West Bay Drive, the elimination of some of the proposed connections to the trail, and the addition of a new connection off Pine Vista Drive. Safety concerns also prompted staff to propose making 12th Avenue Southwest a one-way street northbound toward West Bay Drive. The biggest changes, however, were made to the pedestrian bridge in an attempt to coordinate with the rebranding of downtown. “We kind of put the brakes on and said what are we doing,” Brydon said. “We need to look at this and say how can we make this different. How can we make this t with where we are going?” After working with consultants, the emphasis won’t be the bridge but will be on glass columns on each end of it that will be lit at night. Also, under the bridge will be a new midblock crossing with landscaping, a refuge at the center and a pedestrian-activated crosswalk with ashers. “What we found is that even though there’s a bridge and there’s stairs, nobody climbs those stairs,” she said. “If you are walking from like a medical arts center and you want to go to McDonald’s, you’re walking across the street every single time.” Around LargoShredFest returns to recycling centerLARGO – The city of Largo will hold a ShredFest event Saturday, July 21, from 9 a.m. to noon, at the Starkey Road Recycling Center, 1551 Starkey Road. The drive-through event allows residents to bring up to ve boxes of documents for free and secure on-site shredding and recycling. There is no need to remove staples, paper clips or rubber bands. The Starkey Road Recycling Center is also a 24-hour facility where residents can drop off their mixed recycling at no cost and pick up free, recycled mulch all year-round. To learn more about ShredFest or other upcoming sustainability events, visit or call 727-587-6760.Free swing dance lessons offeredLARGO – Free West Coast swing lessons are offered at 8 p.m. each Friday at the Suncoast Ballroom, 7500 Ulmerton Road, Largo. West Coast Swing is a six-count, slotted partner dance that uses a variety of music formats. For more information, visit Central ParkLargo Central Park is at 101 Central Park Drive. Within the park are the Central Park Performing Arts Center, 105 Central Park Drive; the Largo Feed Store, 295 Central Park Drive; and the Largo Public Library, 120 Central Park Drive. To contact the library, call 727-5876715.Exhibit celebrates band’s 50th anniversaryLARGO – The Largo Public Library is celebrating the Largo High School Band of Gold with a 50th anniversary exhibit in Gallery 120 through Aug. 30. Follow an interactive timeline, with special memorabilia featuring sights and sounds, as the original 1968 “Packer Band” transforms into the world champion Band of Gold under the leadership of band director Robert R. Cotter, bringing national and international fame to Largo.Ukulele Society to hold workshop for kidsLARGO – The Tampa Bay Ukulele Society will hold a free ukulele workshop for kids ages 7-12 on July 23-27. The classes will meet each day for 90 minutes and will begin with the ukulele basics. Participants can borrow a ukulele or bring their own, and will get to show off their skills Friday, July 27, with a MUM-Fest (Making Ukulele Music Festival) for friends and family. Register online at by clicking on Events or call 727-587-6715.Library offering genealogy classes LARGO – The Largo Public Library hosts several free genealogy classes each month. Class duration is 60 to 90 minutes depending on content and questions. No registration required. For the complete listing of all classes and scheduled times, visit, email Bob Bryan at or call 727-595-4521.SHINE offering assistance at libraryLARGO – If you are celebrating your 65th birthday this year, recently retired or just want to know more about your health care options under Medicare, SHINE may be able to help. SHINE, a free program offered by the Florida Department of Elder Affairs and the local Area Agency on Aging, schedules free, unbiased and con dential counseling appointments each month at Largo Public Library. Please call 727-587-6715 to schedule your appointment.Ukulele society to hold monthly workshopLARGO – A monthly ukulele workshop will be held at the Largo Public Library on the third Wednesday of each month at 6 p.m. Hosted by the Tampa Bay Ukulele Society, the workshop provides an introduction to the ukulele. A limited number of instruments will be supplied by the society, so participants are urged to bring their own if they have one. For more information, call 727-587-6715, email libraryinfo@largo. com, or visit Highland Recreation ComplexHighland Recreation Complex is at 400 Highland Ave. Visit or call 727-518-3016.Here We Glo to light up Highland poolLARGO – The Highland Family Aquatic Center will host Here We Glo on Friday, July 20, from 8:45 to 11:45 p.m. The event will include lasers, black lights and LED lights as participants splash down slides. Each admission will receive a free Glo-Necklace and lighted mohawk. Splash’s Snack Bar will be open with $1 hot dogs available. Door prizes and activities are planned. Admission bracelets are on sale for $5 for members and $8 for nonmembers and limited to the rst 250 sold at Highland Recreation Complex. Complex to celebrate 5th anniversaryLARGO – Celebrate the five-year anniversary of Highland Recreation Complex with a day of fun by the pool Saturday, July 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will feature free hot dogs, apple pie from Village Inn, free massages from Blue Q Massage & Wellness, and the prize wheel. Cost is $6 for members and $9 for nonmembers. Admission will be buy-one-get-one free.Fun Family 5K, Pool Party set for July 28LARGO – Highland Recreation will wrap up the Family Fun Run Series with its annual Fun Family 5K and Pool Party on Saturday, July 28, at 8 a.m. Runners will enjoy an easy, at and looped course with optional water obstacles. The cost is $10 per person and $20 per family, which includes a T-shirt and admission to Highland Family Aquatics Center for race day until 2 p.m. Strollers are welcome, but dogs are not allowed. Participants can register at all three city facilities or online at hosts Itty Bitty SplashtimeLARGO – Itty Bitty Splashtime is back every Monday, Wednesday and Friday through Aug. 1 from 9:35 to 10:35 a.m. at the Highland Family Aquatic Center. Parents can spend quality time with their preschool-aged children in a safe and playful aquatic environment. Enjoy the slides, sprays, zero depth pool area and more. Mom’s clubs are welcome. Cost is $1.50 per person. Children that are not potty-trained must wear a plastic swim diaper under their bathing suit. Extended parties will be held Fridays, July 13 and Aug. 3, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. for children ages 5 and under at the Aquatic Center. Children are invited to receive a free juice box at Splash’s Snack Bar. Dunkin’ Donuts will provide coffee and ice coffee for adults and munchkins for the children. Cost is $2.50 per person. Highland Rec Complex offers day careLARGO – The city of Largo offers Little Pals Preschool, a full-time day care for children ages 3 through 5. Licensed by the Pinellas County Licensing Board, Little Pals will promote a school readiness curriculum that works on developing children’s social and creative skills and prepare them for kindergarten. Preschoolers have access to a private outdoor playground and PlayWorld, a three-story indoor playground. Head teacher Paula Squitieri has worked in child care for more than 17 years. The West Bay Drive trailhead project includes changes to a new bridge design for the overpass over the road. After working with consultants, the emphasis won’t be the bridge but will be on glass columns on each end of it that will be lit at night. During a work session July 10, city commissioners seemed to favor the second concept, above, which features the word Largo on a large pillar with raised lettering, various height green screens around the pillar, a retaining wall and annual or perennial arrangements. The second and third concept, below, aim to provide a safer condition for pedestrians by taking the sidewalk farther off Seminole Boulevard and engages walkways and pathways to get people away from the street.Images courtesy of the CITY OF LARGOAmong the features that Communications and Marketing hope to bring to downtown include high visibility, large-impact elements, such as way nding signs, banners, modern architecture, new landscaping, hardscaping, streetscaping and smart technology. The city of Largo unveiled its proposed logo and brand for Downtown Largo on July 10. The abstract logo features red, blue and green circles encompassed by white lines representing a path or journey as visitors explore the area. The colored circles represent downtown, Largo Central Park and the Medical Arts District. The logo also features a new tagline: “You Have To Come See,” with See being an acronym for shop, eat, explore. BRANDING, from page 1A TRAILHEAD, from page 1A PLAZA, from page 1ASee LARGO, page 5A Sprucing up D O W N T O W N DOWNTOWN


Largo 5A Leader, July 19, 2018Little Pals Preschool is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Cost is $140 per week per child. Space is limited to 15 children and children must be potty trained. Highland also has a VPK program available for eligible children. Ballroom dancing classes offeredLARGO – Highland Recreation Complex is now offering ballroom dancing classes for families, who will be taught in a casual, fun environment with lively, contemporary music. Class will be on Thursday evenings from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. The monthly cost is $40 for members and $80 for nonmembers. Southwest Rec ComplexSouthwest Recreation Complex, which includes an aquatic complex, is at 13120 Vonn Road. Call 727-5183125 for recreation or 727-518-3126 for the pool. Visit or bike cycling classes offeredLARGO – The Aquatics Division is offering Aqua Bike Cycling, a high-energy water exercise using new aqua bikes at Southwest Pool. The class will be offered Monday and Wednesdays from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. and Tuesday from 6:15 to 7 p.m. starting in June. This class is limited to eight participants per class. Cost is $7 for members and $14 for nonmembers. Community CenterThe Largo Community Center is at 400 Alt. Keene Road. Visit or call 727-5183131.Forum on Parkinson’s setLARGO – Parkinson’s specialists will present a free forum on Parkinson’s Saturday, July 28, 9 a.m. to noon, at the Largo Community Center. Dr. Heather Herrema, a board-certi ed movement disorder specialist at Central Neurology in St. Petersburg, will be speaking on living well with Parkinson’s. Dr. London Butterfield, a psychologist with St. Anthony’s Hospital BayCare Medical Group, will speak on how to keep the mind as sharp as possible. The free event is hosted by Neuro Challenge Foundation for Parkinson’s. Advance registration is required. To register, visit or call Cindy Underwood at 941-266-5833.Classes and lessons Adult tap and ballet classes: Tap classes are Tuesdays from 1 to 2 p.m. and Thursdays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Ballet classes are Wednesdays from noon to 1 p.m. For an additional cost, participants may stay for a choreography class that builds off the technique taught each week. Tap Technique is $4.50 for members and the combination class is $7 for members. Ballet classes cost $7.50 per class for members.  Ukulele lessons: Hourlong private lessons are $25. Students must provide their own ukulele. Instructor Michael Desselle will focus on basic chords, timing, strumming and learning melodies.Weekly events Bridge games: Mondays and Wednesdays, 12:30 to 4 p.m. All players are welcome to join the American Contract Bridge League-sanctioned games. The cost is $4 with membership or $5, with snacks included. Call Joan Waff at 727-895-9073.  Mahjong games: Thursdays, 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Beginners are welcome. The cost is $1.50 for members.  Sunday Social Dance: Sundays, 6 to 10 p.m. Dress to impress and join about 150 singles and friends of all ages to dance to an extensive music library to t every taste. The cost is $10.Bimonthly events Karaoke party: First and third Fridays, 7 to 10 p.m. Using the big screen in Studio A, singers can choose from an extensive online library. Admission is $5 per person and beer and wine will be available for purchase.  Free matinee movies: Every other Thursday, 1 p.m. Doors open at 12:30 p.m. Limited refreshments will be sold and movie fun facts will be provided.Monthly events Free movies: First Wednesdays at 1 p.m., and third Fridays at 7 p.m. All movies are rated G, PG or PG-13 and are shown with closed captioning when available. Light concessions will be available. Check the Largo Lantern or call 727-518-3131 for a listing of movies.  Senior adult luncheon: Third Thursdays, noon to 2 p.m. Tickets are $12 and include lunch and a show. Tickets go on sale for Recreation Card holders on the rst of the month prior to each show. Those without Recreation Cards can purchase tickets on the second of the month. On the day of the show, doors open at 11:45 a.m., lunch is served between noon and 1 p.m. and the show is from 1 to 2 p.m.  Line dance parties: Fourth Fridays, 7 to 10 p.m. Line dancing is a low-impact exercise for all ages. Beginner dancers can easily follow the more seasoned dancers on our split floor setup in the Goodman Ballroom. Admission is $8 per person.Group meetingsAmerican Legion Post 119LARGO – American Legion Post 119, at 130 First Ave. SW, will host several events that are open to the public. Lunches featuring burgers and specials will be served Monday and Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Wednesday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., a steak hoagie special will be served. Lunch will not be served Thursday or Friday, but takeout orders are accepted by calling 727-584-2038. Friday Night Dinners are served from 5 to 8 p.m., with music by Karaoke DJ Bill Johnson, 7 to 11 p.m. The cost is $7.25 for shrimp or a four-piece chicken dinner or all-you-can-eat fried sh. It is served with rolls, French fries and coleslaw. Saturday Night Dinners are served 5 to 8 p.m., with music by various artists weekly, 7 to 11 p.m. The cost is $8.25 and includes bacon-wrapped let mignon served with a salad, baked potato and rolls. Coffee is $1. Sons of the American Legion Post 119 sponsor “Wing Madness” every Monday night, 5 to 8 p.m. Enjoy chicken wings served hot, mild, barbecue, butter and garlic and spicy barbecue for $5 for six or $8 for 12. French fries and onion rings are available. Bob Swenson provides music from 6 to 8 p.m. Proceeds bene t the Special Olympics, Fisher House at Bay Pines, and American Legion National Child Welfare Foundation and National Emergency Fund.VFW Post 10094LARGO – VFW Post 10094, at 14450 Walsingham Road, offers several events each week that are and open to the public. Each Monday, Bingo starts at 6:30 p.m. Hamburgers and hot dogs are served beforehand for $3. On Tuesday afternoons, Trivia Time is held from 2 to 4 p.m. and darts are offered starting at 7 p.m. Each Thursday, dinner is served from 6 to 7 p.m. for $6 to $7. A different meal is served each week, and entertainers vary from week to week. Friday is Karaoke With Mollie, which begins at 6 p.m., with hot dogs and hamburgers offered from 6 to 7 p.m. Live entertainment is on Friday, Saturday and Sundays inside and outside, weather permitting. All are welcome, but you must have a current membership card to be served alcohol. Proceeds benefit the Bill Young VA Hospital programs, the VFW National Home, Sea Cadet Youth activities and the Boy Scouts.Largo Lions ClubLARGO – The Largo Lions Club meets on the rst and third Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. at Tailgaters, 13847 Walsingham Road. The club is a network of volunteers who serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding. For more information, email or visit Club of Largo/Mid-PinellasLARGO – The Kiwanis Club of Largo/Mid-Pinellas meets for dinner at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Thursday of each month at The Suncoast Caf, 1921 West Bay Drive. Each meeting features a speaker and fellowship over a meal, where members plan service and fundraising projects. Kiwanis is a worldwide service organization founded in 1915 to serve the children of the world and at the local level. For more information, visit or call 727-536-0412. 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6A County Leader, July 19, 2018 By SUZETTE PORTERTampa Bay NewspapersFormer Redington Shores Mayor Jay Beyrouti is joining the Pinellas County Commission representing District 6. Beyrouti, 66, was appointed by Gov. Rick Scott to ll the seat left vacant after former long-time commissioner John Morroni died of cancer May 20. Scott announced Beyrouti’s appointment July 12. Beyrouti served as mayor of Redington Shores from 1994-2006. In a Facebook post, Commission Chair Ken Welch congratulated Beyrouti and said he was looking forward to working with him. Beyrouti is the founder and CEO of Monicarla Investment Inc., which gets its name from Monica and Carla, his daughters, according to information on Beyrouti’s Facebook page. He serves on the board of directors for Space Florida and Enterprise Florida. He chaired the Pinellas County Republican Executive Committee from 2008 to 2012. He received his bachelor’s degree in accounting and international business from Sacred Heart Business School. Beyrouti’s appointment began July 13. His service will be short. His replacement will be decided by voters in November. Four candidates qualified to run for the District 6 seat in the upcoming Nov. 6 election. Registered Republicans will pick the candidate of their choice during the Aug. 28 primary. The winner will take on the Democratic candidate in the Nov. 6 general election. The Republican candidates are Larry Ahern and Kathleen Peters, who both have served in the state Legislature, and political newcomer Barb Haselden. The only Democrat who qualified is Amy Kedron, another newcomer to the political arena. Suzette Porter is Pinellas County editor. She can be reached at mayor of Redington Shores joins commissionScott taps Beyrouti to replace Morroni until Nov. election COUNTY COMMISSION PROTECTING ACCESS FOR PUBLIC Jay Beyrouti By SUZETTE PORTERTampa Bay Newspapers A new law passed by the Florida Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott is creating controversy as some owners of private beaches move to restrict access. Scott signed an executive order July 12 urging the state’s counties to protect public beach access and directed the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to support the counties’ efforts. “Last session, HB631 was passed with overwhelming support from both Democrats and Republicans,” Scott said in a press release. “Unfortunately, the legislation has now created considerable confusion and some have even interpreted it as restricting beach access. I’m committed to keeping our beaches open to the public and this executive order makes this commitment clear.” HB631 went into effect July 1. Many complain that it makes it harder for governments to keep property owners from restricting beach access.Beach ownership complicatedPinellas County Environmental Management sent out a press release the same day Scott signed the executive order advising beachfront property owners not to install fences or signage or make any other structural changes seaward of the Coastal Construction Control Line without first obtaining state and local approvals. County officials say the new state law does not grant beach property owners “unfettered rights” to the dry beach behind their properties above the mean water line. “While the new law limits the ability of local governments to enact ordinances impacting private beaches, beach ownership is complicated, and in many cases portions of the upland are either owned by the state of Florida, protected by environmental regulations, or open to the public by virtue of other rules or agreements,” county of cials say. All Pinellas County barrier island municipalities have ordinances that apply to beach activities, and the state has rules governing activities seaward of the CCCL. The county says beach property owners should rst check with their local barrier island government and then contact the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to learn what is allowed seaward of the CCCL. For more information including links to the CCCL map and permitting resources, visit www. coastalMngmt/default.htm.Keeping access openIn a press release, Scott said he had ordered the FDEP to “do everything in their power to advocate to keep our beaches open and public.” Scott also put a moratorium on any new state regulation that could inhibit public beach access and urged local government officials to take similar steps to protect Floridians’ access to the beach. “Florida is home to the world’s best beaches, and every Floridian and visitor has the right to fully enjoy our state’s natural resources,” Scott said. “Florida beaches belong to all of us, and people from across the world visit Florida because of them – and we are going to keep it that way.” The city of Madeira Beach expressed its gratitude to the governor for his executive order in a July 13 press release. “We appreciate the governor’s action on this issue, which has caused so much confusion in recent weeks,” said Madeira Beach City Manager Jonathan Evans. “The City Commission voiced its opposition to the bill prior to its adopting in Tallahassee and continued to make the case for local control over local beaches by adopting a resolution requesting our own state Legislative delegation work to repeal the bill. The Executive Order takes the following actions: 1. It imposes a moratorium on executive state agencies adopting any rule or restriction to inhibit the public’s access to Florida’s beaches, unless there is a clear risk to public safety. 2. It directs the FDEP to serve as an advocate for the public’s right to public beach access and establishing an online reporting tool so Floridians with concerns about beach access can provide input. DEP will compile this input and submit a report to the Florida Legislature and the Governor before the next legislative session. DEP also will serve as a liaison to local governments to ensure the public’s right to access the beach is protected. 3. It urges all local government entities to not adopt any rule or ordinance that would restrict or eliminate the public’s access to Florida’s beaches. 4. State Attorneys are asked to protect Floridians’ constitutional right to access the beach. “Government’s job is to help solve problems, and in Florida, when there is an issue or confusion surrounding legislation, we take action to address it,” Scott said. “Florida is the most beautiful state in the nation. We have hundreds of miles of pristine coastline and we are known for having the best beaches across the world. We absolutely cannot do anything that changes that.”Scott takes action after beach law makes wavesPhoto courtesy of PINELLAS COUNTYThis stretch of beach at Fort De Soto Park is open to the public; however, beach access in some areas around Pinellas is in question due to a new law that went into effect July 1. Candidates to answer questions at Politics in PinellasCLEARWATER – Each election cycle, the Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce hosts Politics in Pinellas, where Pinellas County voters meet face to face with candidates for elected of ce on the November ballot. The 10th Politics in Pinellas is on Thursday, July 26, 3-7 p.m., at the EpiCenter, St. Petersburg College, 13805 58th St. N. in Clearwater. Con rmed participants include:  Terry Krassner, School Board, District 2  Jeff Larsen, School Board, District 2  Nicole Carr, School Board, District 3  Kathleen Peters, County Commission, District 6  Ed Hooper, State Senator, District 16  Jeff Brandes, State Representative, District 24  Terry Power, State Representative, District 64  Doneene Loar, 6th Circuit Judge  Nick DiCeglie, State Representative, District 66  Alex Heeren, State Representative, District 66 Candidates for elected of ce will answer questions, citizens may speak with their elected officials in person. Citizens can vote in The Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections’ “Straw Poll” of announced and quali ed candidates during the event. The results will be made available to the media and through social media. This event is free to the public. Candidate tables are $150 or $250. Announced and qualified candidates for the 2018 Election Cycle may register online at www.Clearwaterflorida. org/events.St. Pete-Clearwater airport keeps setting recordsCLEARWATER – St. PeteClearwater International Airport, call letters PIE, had more passenger traf c in June than any other June in its history. Airport officials announced that June’s passenger count was a 12 percent increase over 2017. Year-to-date passengers are up 11 percent over last year. Officials also noted that parking at PIE is limited with construction in and around its roadways and parking lots continuing as the Gateway Express Project is underway. In addition, PIE’s Terminal Renovation Project in Gates 7-10 is continuing. Allegiant Air is the airport’s largest carrier offering 54 nonstop domestic ights. 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County 7A Leader, July 19, 2018 Police BeatClearwater re medics save 91-year-old man from sinking carCLEARWATER – Two Clearwater Fire & Rescue medics pulled an elderly man from his car as it was sinking in a pond just before noon July 13 at 2022 Camelot Drive, which is in the Top of the World development off Montclair Road. Clearwater Fire & Rescue of cials say a 2013 Hyundai Sonata being driven by a 91-year-old man plunged into a pond at that location for an unknown reason. Fire Medic Paul Sudduth and Fire Medic Andrew Sullivan were rst on scene, immediately put on water rescue gear, jumped into the water, and swam to where the car was sinking. They were able to pull open a rear door and get the man, identi ed as Harry Hefter of Clearwater, out of the vehicle. They say Hefter was in the back seat in an air pocket as water was lling the vehicle. Hefter was taken to Mease Countryside Hospital as a precaution for treatment and was reported to be in stable condition. Florida Highway Patrol investigated and according to a media release, just before the car crashed into the pond, Hefter had been traveling westbound on Utopian Drive East, east of Utopian Boulevard. A 2005 Pontiac Montana was parked southbound on Utopian Drive east, west of Utopian Boulevard. Troopers say that Hefter lost control of his vehicle while making a left turn into a parking space that was adjacent to the parked vehicle. Hefter’s car accelerated forward, colliding with the parked car and a perimeter barrier wall. Hefter’s car then continued through the parking space, turned right and entered the pond. He was cited for careless driving.Pinellas Park man critically injured when car crashes into PSTA busPINELLAS PARK – Pinellas Park police have identi ed the driver of a black Honda Civic that crashed into a PSTA bus about 3:30 p.m. July 13 on Gandy Boulevard. Police say Brian Hannum, 31, of Pinellas Park was driving the Civic, traveling westbound in the curb lane on Gandy Boulevard approaching Grand Avenue. He was directly behind a PSTA bus. The bus slowed for traf c about the same time the Civic was moving into the right turn lane. Police say the Civic “failed to vacate the curb lane in time” and struck the right rear of the bus. Hannum was transported to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries and at last report was listed in critical condition. The bus driver, Yolanda Gibson, 54, of St. Petersburg suffered minor injuries and also was transported to an area hospital. The two passengers on the bus were not injured. Photo courtesy of CLEARWATER FIRE & RESCUEClearwater Fire & Rescue medics Paul Sudduth and Andrew Sullivan pull a 91-year-old Clearwater man out of a car that was sinking in a pond July 13. The sole occupant of the vehicle, Harry Hefter, was taken to a local hospital and was reportedly in stable condition. Florida Highway Patrol investigated and cited Hefter with careless driving. DixieDixie was dumped by the family who bred her as she was no longer needed. Her tail wags a bunch, and she loves a belly rub. This 10-year-old Coonhound mix is housebroken and great on a leash. She is up to date on all vaccinations and current on heartworm, ea and tick preventatives. To ll out an adoption application, visit Fluff Animal Rescue online at www. To see more adoptable pets, visit of the Week Pet BriefsSkyway Cat Club to host TICA showLARGO – The Skyway Cat Club of Tampa Bay will host The International Cat Association All-breed Cat Show on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 18-19, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Minnreg Hall, 6340 126th Ave. N., Largo. Cats will compete in 12 different rings both days. Judges from all around the world and the United States will evaluate cats both days. The event will include feline education and welfare. Attendees will have an opportunity to learn about different breeds of cats and how to care for them. The show will feature more than 25 breeds of cats. Vendors will have cat trees, cat beds, toys, unique gifts, and much more cat-related items for sale. Cats and kittens will be available for adoption from local shelters. There will be a raf e and food will be available for purchase. Parking is free. Admission is $6 for adults, $3 for children and free for children age 5 and younger. Event organizers will be collecting items for a local spay and neuter clinic. Attendees are encouraged to donate items such as blankets, bleach, paper towels, printing paper, tall kitchen trash bags, cleaning supplies, of ce supplies, baby wipes and cat and dog crates. Those who bring a can or dry cat food to donate will receive a $1 discount on admission. For information, visit or call 727-289-1989.County Animal Services announces July special LARGO – Pinellas County Animal Services is offering an adoption special through July. All cats, kittens and large breed dogs six months and older can be adopted for $4. Small breed dogs and puppies under six months are $75. This adoption special will run through the end of July for all onsite adoptions and includes spay/neuter, microchip, county license, internal and external parasite control, up-to-date vaccinations and more. Adoption counselors will be on hand to ensure the animals are being placed in good homes. Pinellas County Animal Services is at 12450 Ulmerton Road in Largo. 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8A Business Leader, July 19, 2018 BriefcaseSea Dog announces opening of boat docks TREASURE ISLAND – Sea Dog Brew Pub in Treasure Island recently announced the opening of six new boat slips, with ve more to come later this summer. There will be two docks in total: one along the seawall on the north side of the Blind Pass Bridge and the other along the south side of the bridge. Each dock also offers a 30-minute berth for to-go orders. In addition to the new construction of the boat docks, Sea Dog will be selling beer, ice and bait to boaters. There are also plans for an outdoor tiki bar and small stage for live entertainment on the weekends. “This will truly be the place to be, whether you come by car, boat, or tread in straight off the beach,” said Charles Breakiron, general manager, in a press release. Mid-Coast Marine Group in conjunction with G&M Contracting Inc. are contracted to build the docks and are currently ahead of schedule. Grand opening set for be 4 Giving Bake House PINELLAS PARK – A grand opening celebration will take place Wednesday, Aug. 1, 11 a.m., at be 4 Giving Bake House, 4505 Park Blvd., Unit 5, Pinellas Park. The event will include a ribbon-cutting ceremony, set for 11:30 a.m. According to a press release, b4g uses higher level ingredients. All ingredients are primarily organic. Everything is scratch made with custom created recipes. Some recipes are protein packed and even ourless or nutbased while others are classic treats made using high quality ingredients. b4g donates 4 percent of sales to local charities. They work with four charities a year to donate those proceeds, spread the word about their cause, fundraise with them to offer greater percentage donations, etc. The owner, Sarah Liakos, looks forward to getting to know the Pinellas Park community and being involved. MarketSpace for Good to showcase artistsST. PETERSBURG – With the launch of MarketSpace for Good, Shop Local for Good will be showcasing local artists, artisans and entrepreneurs, and also will add a Local Author Showcase to the retail space at 6785 46th Ave. N. in St. Petersburg. The grand opening of the MarketSpace for Good will take place Saturday, July 21, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and will include book signings by local authors whose works will be regularly available at the Local Author Showcase. “It’s refreshing to nd a professionally operated and permanent outlet for our local craftsmen, artists, and artisans,” said Tom Cuba, local author, in a press release. “The Keep it Local movement has arrived and has carved out a place for itself.” Along with showcasing the products of local entrepreneurs through a local business incubator model, the mission of MarketSpace for Good will include a mentoring component through the community outreach of the Benevolution Foundation Inc. “We are developing a mentoring program that will empower young people who have ‘aged-out’ of foster care and who may need a hand up on building life skills,” said Karena Morrison, founder of the Benevolution Foundation. “We are looking forward to offering entrepreneurial mentorship, resume building opportunities, and more towards encouraging their success in the community.” Limited openings are available for local entrepreneurs available, and Shop Local for Good is encouraging interested individuals to complete a short survey to receive information about this opportunity for growing their business in Greater Tampa Bay. Seminole market to accept applicationsSEMINOLE – The city of Seminole voted earlier this year to allow the move of the entire Mid-Week Madeira Beach Open Air Market operation to the city in November. The Mid-Week Madeira Beach Open Air Market enjoyed nearly five seasons on Madeira Way and is being relocated due to construction plans that are currently underway in Madeira Beach. General vendor applications and acceptance for the Seminole Wednesday Market will open Aug. 1. Preference will be given to those vendors in good standing with the Beach Markets and to those who are applying to vend produce and/or plants. Forms are available now via the Beach Markets website at The new market will be Wednesdays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and will be located on the grounds of the City of Seminole Recreation Center, 9100 113th St. in Seminole. For information, visit www.thebeachmarkets.comPet Wants comes to St. PeteST. PETERSBURG – Local resident Jaime Williams recently launched her new small business, Pet Wants St. Pete. According to a press release, Pet Wants’ specially-crafted pet food formulas are made in small batches with fresh, natural ingredients enhanced with vitamins and minerals for a complete and balanced diet in every bowl. Pet Wants St. Pete offers multiple blends of dog and cat food formulas as well as healing salve, calming balm, anti-itch spray, paw wax and more. “Pet Wants is a carefully developed proprietary pet food that is unique because of the outstanding nutrients and unchallenged freshness,” said Williams. “It’s like no other pet food on the market. It’s very exciting to be involved with such a company that exists to improve nutrition, health, vitality and well-being of pets throughout North America.” To learn more about Pet Wants St. Pete or to place a delivery order, call 772-932-8120, email or visit www. Photo SUBMITTEDSea Dog Brew Pub in Treasure Island is adding two new boat docks this summer. HOW TO PREPARE YOUR TREES FOR HURRICANE SEASON One major hazard when the wind whips up are falling trees. Branches and limbs can snap, and in extreme cases the entire trunk can be uprooted, posing a threat to the stability of your home and the safety of loved ones inside it.Part of having a disaster safety plan for your property includes taking actions to make sure that your trees are safe and not at risk for serious damage. By knowing your level of vulnerability to storm damage and which preventative actions to take, you can reduce the effects of a hurricane disaster to your home and yard.Hurricane hazards come in many forms and include storm surge, high winds, tornadoes, and ooding. Most trees that fall or are damaged during a storm could have been identi ed as hazardous or at risk if they had been properly evaluated beforehand. Preparing your trees for a hurricane begins a long time before the storm even forms, says Jane Morse, commercial horticulture agent for Pinellas County. The selection of the tree is important. Some species are more wind-resistant than others, palms being among the best. Other, broad-leaved trees, do well too, and they survive better if they are planted in groups of ve or more. She also recommends planting high quality trees with one main trunk and good form. It should at least have 10 feet of open space all around it. Trees that will grow taller than 30 feet need even more space. The older the tree, the more likely it is to be a problem, she says. Some outward signs of impending trouble are the presence of mushrooms, large wounds or broken and damaged branches. Prune strategically over a period of years, she adds, removing side branches that grow upright. Otherwise, the tree will end up with multiple trunks, weakening it. For much of this work, Morse recommends using professional tree services that are members of the International Society of Arborists. It's not too late to take action! Have a professional check for previous storm damage. Cracked or partially-attached limbs are already fragile. They should be removed and secured, as they are likely to fall once a storm hits. Identify sections of decay in your trees. Are sections of the trunk hollow? Are there signs of fungus or insect infestation? Weakening of the tree's foundations could cause it to come crashing down, and it may need to be removed all together. Check for branches in contact with wires or see if your tree has grown tall enough to become entangled with the electricity wires overhead? If so it may become energized during the storm and may even catch re. Sponsored by Silverson Tree and Landscape. B e P r e p a r e d Be Prepared!FORTIFY YOUR HOME BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE ... 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Outdoors 9A Leader, July 19, 2018Each summer we go through the same bait sh woes. As the bait continues to become more dif cult to come by we’re starting to see an in ux of small bait enter the area. It won’t be long before these small baits are big enough to put on a hook when targeting a variety of game sh. Pilchards, otherwise known as whitebait, can be angler’s biggest asset when targeting a variety of both inshore and offshore gamefish. Fortunately for us, it appears we now may be on the verge of a major change. Masses of juvenile pilchards have ooded our bays and beaches. These tiny baits will grow quickly and soon they’ll be big enough to tempt most any game sh. These smaller baits can be used in a couple of situations. Mackerel, bluefish and ladyfish numbers have increased with the arrival of the fry bait and can often be seen busting through the pods of bait. Using a quarter inch mesh cast net will allow you to net the baits without getting a bunch hung up in the net. Anchor up in the area that the bait is the thickest and toss out handfuls of freebees. This should bring the sh right behind the boat. Use a number two long-shank hook to prevent cut-offs and a weighted oat to help cast the baits out. Mangrove snapper love tiny pilchards. Although we haven’t seen the numbers of snapper near shore like we had a few years ago, it shouldn’t be long before their numbers increase with the arrival of the bait. However, there is plenty of snapper further offshore. Many of the arti cial reefs in 40to 50-feet of water are loaded with snapper this time of year and the pipeline is another spot that always has snapper. Taking a bunch of iced down pilchards to these areas can make for awesome snapper fishing. Use fresh chum blocks, deploy a steady stream of pilchards and it won’t be long before the snapper will get into your chumslick. Use number two live bait hooks and usually no more than a quarter ounce egg sinker and lower your bait sh right down the Chum Slick. Tyson Wallerstein can be reached at To get a fish photo in the paper, send the photo along with your name, when and where it was caught to or mail it to Tampa Bay Newspapers, 9911 Seminole Blvd., Seminole, FL 33772.Bait sh flooding bays, beaches Photo by JANET HOPSONHundreds of boaters were joined by kayakers, jet skiers and paddle boarders July 14 at the John’s Pass Sandbar for the Mad Beach Sandbar Party. In addition to this game of volleyball, the afternoon included a oating dock with a live band. The event was organized by Mad Beach Dive Bar, Mad Beach Brewing, Guerilla Panic and In nite Descent Scuba and Free Dive.A ‘mad’ partyKiwanians set for Family Fun FishingLARGO – The Kiwanis Club of Seminole Breakfast will celebrate its 14th year of Family Fun Fishing, Saturday, Aug. 4, 8-11 a.m., at Taylor Park, 1100 SW Eighth Ave., Largo. Family Fun Fishing occurs four times a year from April through October and is free for children up to 14 years of age. The Kiwanis Club of Seminole Breakfast provides the bait and shing poles, but kids are welcome to bring their own gear. Prizes are given out for the rst fish caught, most fish caught and the rst, second and third largest sh. Coffee or juice and a doughnut will be provided. Donations go toward purchase of bait for the shing days. For more information, call Leah Hoffman at 727-873-7852.Park to host birds of prey showLARGO – The Look Alive Bird Show will be held Sunday, July 22, from 1 to 2 p.m., at the Narrows Environmental Education Center, 11901 146th St. N. Attendees will get a glimpse at Florida’s fabulous flighted hunters. The show details the amazing adaptations that raptors use to exploit the natural world for their gain. The show includes owls, hawks, falcons and Sarge, the center’s own bald eagle and the star of the show. Cost is $3 a person. Outdoors Fish TalesCapt. Tyson Wallerstein Garden BriefsClearwater Garden Club to present program on pollinatorsCLEARWATER – Jennifer Standley, a University of Florida Master Beekeeper student, will present a program Saturday, July 21, 10:30 a.m., at the Clearwater Garden Club, 405 Seminole St., Clearwater. Standley will discuss pollinators with a focus on bees. With native bee populations in decline, Standley will talk about why they are important, the problems they face and what can be done to help. For details about the club, visit www. y gardening program setPALM HARBOR – Master Gardener Leslie Zambito will host a program on butter y gardening Thursday, Aug. 9, 2 to 3:30 p.m., at Palm Harbor Library, 2330 Nebraska Ave., Palm Harbor. Zambito will discuss butterflies that live in the Tampa Bay area with an emphasis on what is needed to attract and keep these butter ies in area gardens. The program is free. To register, visit growpinellas. Society to meetPINELLAS PARK – The Florida West Coast Bromeliad Society will meet Tuesday, Aug. 7, 7:30 p.m., at Good Samaritan Church, 6085 Park Blvd., Pinellas Park. The speaker will be Ben Sill, a bromeliad grower in South Carolina. Over the years, Sill has hybridized and registered about 25 bromeliads, both Billbergias and bi-generic Bilmeas. His talk, titled “A Blue-collar Bromeliad Love Story,” is about his history with bromeliads and their hybridization. He will have a number of examples of his hybrids to display. WARD, Janet Brown March 14, l951 June 28, 2018Janet Brown Ward, 67, wife of Dr. William Q. Ward of Belleair Beach, Florida, passed away suddenly on Monday, June 28, 2018. Janet graduated from Walker County High School in Jasper Alabama, completed her education at the University of Alabama as a Registered Dietician where she worked at UAB in the Nephrology Department. Janet will most be remembered for her love of nature, service to her community, and her adventurous spirit that led her and her husband on travels around the world. Her kind, giving spirit will be missed by all! Janet is survived by her husband of 30 years, William Q. Ward and his children, Stephen Ward (deceased), Robert and Cathy Rodgers Ward of Los Angeles, Beth Dillard of Santa Rosa Beach, Florida and Patricia Anne Pace of Birmingham. She was predeceased by her parents, Agnes Taylor Brown and Howard R. Brown; and sister, Joan Brown Lewis. She is survived by her brother, O.H. Brown and his wife, Marthanne; sister, Judy Brown Hager and her husband, Steve, all from Jasper, Alabama. A private service will be held with the family. Obituaries BRENNAN, Timothy Lee "Tiger"Timothy Lee "Tiger" Brennan, 43, a resident of Largo, Florida, formerly of Fort Madison, Iowa, passed away at Suncoast Hospice Care Center, Palm Harbor, Florida on Thursday, November 16, 2017. 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10A Viewpoints Leader, July 19, 2018Florida lawmakers seem to be convinced that any problem where the solution is a tax increase is a problem worth ignoring. According to WalletHub, Florida is the ninth-lowest state for taxes. Since we rank third-highest in population, that means something has to give. Actually, a lot of things have been cast aside as either unimportant (Medicaid expansion, for instance), or at least underfunded (public education). But few things are more glaring than Florida’s inadequate transportation system, and in Tampa, that problem is bad and getting worse. A 2016 study showed Tampa drivers spent more than 27 hours stuck in traf c that year, with a loss of $923 per driver. That ranked 31st in the U.S. for worst congestion. With projections that show about 600,000 new residents expected in Hillsborough County alone in the next 30 years, doing nothing is not an option. That explains why we could be in for a showdown between an acute need for a better way to move people around, and the dug-in heels who have never met a tax they believe is worth paying. A Hillsborough citizens group called All for Transportation has been out for several weeks trying to gain enough certi ed signatures on a petition to put a 1-cent sales tax hike on the ballot this November. They need more than 48,000 signatures by July 27, and as now they are well short. William March of the Tampa Bay Times reported Sunday that as of late last week, just 8,437 petitions were turned in to the Supervisor of Elections of ce – although Committee Chairman Tyler Hudson says they have more than 12,000 others they haven’t yet submitted. Hudson estimates the tax would generate $280 million next year, which would be divided among the Hillsborough Area Rapid Transit for more buses, and the city, county, Temple Terrace and Plant City for various transportation needs — things like road and bridge repairs, sidewalks, and so on. There is so far no mention of rail. Opponents have proved adept at beating these kinds of initiatives. A 2010 referendum that included light rail was trounced, and in 2016 the Republican-controlled County Commission wouldn’t even let a proposal called Go Hillsborough on the ballot. Hudson’s initiative, backed by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik, would be an end-run around the commission by allowing voters to make this part of the county’s charter. It won’t be easy. Hillsborough public schools have also oated the idea of going after a sales-tax referendum to help pay for more than $1 billion in current capital needs along with the need to build more schools and hire more teachers to keep up. School funding, of course, will be a major campaign issue this fall in the governor’s race, so it’s possible for school of cials to hope/pray that they get some relief from Tallahassee after years of being a political chew toy. A new $892 million stadium for the Tampa Bay Rays will not be a major election issue, but the team has already made it clear that it will not pay anywhere close to the full cost of the project. Backers will concentrate on cobbling enough tourist tax and other outside revenue streams that don’t hit local residents, but you know how that goes. Hearing the word “tax” too many times, no matter the source, can have a negative impact on convincing locals to dig deeper. But there is a reason to believe local commuters have enough of gridlock and don’t see a way to improve their lives by simply building more roads. That’s the best thing this potential referendum has going. First, though, they have to round up about 28,000 more signatures in a short amount of time. You’ll probably see volunteers out around the area – assuming they can get through the traf c to their destinations. Joe Henderson has had a 45-year career in newspapers, including the last nearly 42 years at The Tampa Tribune. WASHINGTON – In May 2016, when candidate Donald Trump released a short list from which he pledged to choose a U.S. Supreme Court nominee, he probably clinched his victory in November. In one gesture, the former Democrat running in the GOP primary assured conservatives he would not pick a wobbly jurist in the David Souter mold – because the list had been drawn with the help of the conservative Heritage Foundation and Federalist Society. He also quelled the fear of skeptics that the idiosyncratic Trump would pull a quirky wild card out of his deck of people who have caught his eye. Think Fox News’ Judge Jeanine Pirro for the top court. Wouldn’t work. The list guaranteed that each of Trump’s picks for the high court would be, as Trump described Brett Kavanaugh in his Monday night nomination extravaganza, “a judge’s judge.” The same could be applied to Trump’s rst nominee, now-Justice Neil Gorsuch. Critics have hit Trump for “outsourcing” his Supreme Court pick. But the decision to consult with top conservative legal minds to develop a list, which Trump later expanded twice, has helped the administration avoid surprises and allowed Trump to pick from the cream of the judicial pool. And as a result, activists on the other side of the aisle had time – months in the case of Gorsuch, and two years in the case of Kavanaugh – to dig through the records of both men, who were on Trump’s rst list. Indeed, the Trump list was so transparent that pro-abortion activists announced they would protest Trump’s pick even before they knew who it would be. Barring a surprise, the outcome seems clear as well. Kavanaugh is likely to win con rmation, even though Republicans hold only a slim majority of 51 in the Senate and one member – Sen. John McCain of Arizona – has brain cancer and has not been able to cast a vote in the Senate this year. Pro-abortion groups are running ads urging GOP Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who support abortion rights, to oppose Kavanaugh. But the judge, it should be noted, testi ed in 2006 that if con rmed to the U.S. Circuit Court in Washington, D.C., he “would follow Roe v. Wade faithfully and fully.” The thing is, both Collins and Murkowski voted for Gorsuch. Both also voted to con rm Kavanaugh in 2006. Barring new developments, it’s hard to imagine them rejecting the judge. The Hill reported Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, had reservations about Kavanaugh, given two of his rulings on government searches and surveillance. In Klayman v. Obama, Kavanaugh wrote, “The government’s metadata (gathering) program is entirely consistent with the Fourth Amendment.” But after Trump’s announcement Monday night, Paul tweeted he had an “open mind” on Kavanaugh. Trump apparently is confident that he can count on Paul when the chips are down. He didn’t take the Kentuckian’s opposition too seriously in April when Mike Pompeo was up for a con rmation vote to become secretary of state. Rand Paul “has never let me down,” Trump proclaimed before Paul ipped in favor of Pompeo. In his selection of Kavanaugh, Trump picked someone with impeccable credentials who is likely to win the nomination and bring credit to Trump’s judgment. If only he would use this model for all major administration posts. A number of Trump’s picks reveal shrewd judgment – Pompeo, Vice President Mike Pence, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao – but others seem driven by an urge to throw caution to the wind. Trump’s roll-the-dice decision to nominate his White House doctor, Ronny Jackson, to head the Department of Veterans Affairs, for instance, apparently was based on the president’s admiration of Jackson’s performance brie ng the press corps on Trump’s health. Jackson didn’t have the administrative chops for the job, but he did have his share of inhouse enemies. By the time Jackson’s name was withdrawn, his reputation was thoroughly smeared. He is a living warning about what can go wrong when Trump takes a shine to you. Then there’s flash White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci, whom Trump fired 10 days after hiring him. It seems Trump’s idea of a communications wizard didn’t realize it’s a bad idea to badmouth White House higher-ups to a reporter without stipulating that the conversation is off the record. When Trump named Rex Tillerson as his choice for secretary of state before Pompeo, observers hoped it would be a brilliant outsidethe-box move, especially as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice recommended the former Exxon chief executive. But Tillerson never was able to transition to diplomacy, meaning that in some spheres of the globe a year of foreign policy was lost. The worst part is even a casual observer could have predicted disaster, Rice’s admiration notwithstanding. As Trump basks in the glory of his Kavanaugh pick, one can only hope he will realize that some decisions have too much consequence to go with your gut. Contact Debra J. Saunders at dsaunders@ or 202-662-7391. LETTERS Debra Saunders Joe Griffs, a newly-hired reporter for the Altoona Eagle, was sent to interview Olivia Cooni, red-hot diva for the Pitts eld Prunetang Operetta Company during its three-day visit. Ms. Cooni, lush in manner and makeup, welcomed Griffs at her dressing room door. “Welcome, sir. Please enter, sit and quiz me as you wish. But rst, give me your de nition of the term ‘cadenza.’” Joe said, “Sorry, ma’am. I unked music at Toonerville Tech.” “Then how in the name of Rossini’s pet rabbit can you write a feature story about light opera or its performers? Please come back to see me when I return a year from now. In the meantime, study the appropriate musical lingo, the jargon, the vernacular.” Joe took Ms. Cooni’s advice. During the next year he became an O.W. (operetta whizbang). He studied the works of Romberg, Victor Herbert, Gilbert, Sullivan, Kern and others. He listened to their music, analyzed their track records and – most of all – studied the wording of the many newspaper and magazines’ reviews that had been written. A year later when Ms. Cooni and the Prune-tangers returned, Joe was ripe and ready to review their performance. Following are fragments of Joe Griff’s write-up. “Last night’s rendition of ‘Silly Sally,’” starring the molto vivace coloratura Olivia Cooni, was primo in some cadenzas but a tad schnell in others. Where she should have sung adagio ma non troppo in some places, she occasionally chose to give it the old capriccio treatment made famous in 1927 by Lily White de Palma in Boozer Canker’s immortal “Keesa Mein Halibut.” “Nevertheless and notwithstanding, Ms. Cooni’s soprano phrasings soared to the rafters and shivered the ancient timbers of the Altoona Masonic Lodge Hall. Her vibrato resonated from her diaphragm, transited her epiglottis and larynx, and blended into a silky phrasing as it achieved a classic legato not often heard in central Pennsylvania. “Ms. Cooni’s romantic partner in ‘Silly Sally’ was the legendary German baritone Urich von Hans-Klapper, best known for his basso non profundo performance as Prince Fenster Lieper in Richard Wagner’s not-often-staged mysteryopera ‘Der Vergiftet (Poisoned) Sauerbraten.’” The day after Joe Griffs’ review was published, Ms. Cooni visited Joe at the of ces of the Altoona Eagle. She was much more gracious than she’d been a year earlier. She said, “Mr. Griffs, Herr von Hans-Klapper and I want to thank you for your review of our performance. We feel your writing was fair and balanced. I was especially impressed at your use of the musical terminology that was scattered throughout your piece. You certainly took my advice about learning the specialized terms and expressions of our profession. Deems Taylor of the New York Times would have been proud of you.” Griffs said, “Thank you, but I thought my writeup was a piece of crap.” “I’m shocked,” Ms. Cooni said. “Why do you feel that way?” “Because I sounded phony. I’m writing for readers who live in Altoona, not Manhattan. They’re intelligent, but most of them don’t give a rats-ass about your epiglottis or your cadenza.” “So, what should you have said?” “I should have said that your singing was delightful, that your voice and bosom are equally attractive, and that I could understand every word that you and your co-star Herr Whatzizname uttered. The orchestra, while unlikely to perform soon in Carnegie Hall, was more than competent. The audience responded the way all entertainers pray for: they laughed a lot, and they stayed for the entire show. Stuff like that. Skip the show-off jargon. Keep it simple. Write like Hemingway, not Henry James.” Griffs was interrupted by a phone call from the newspaper’s city editor, Cecilia Zipper. She said, “Joe, I’m getting all sorts of calls from readers who saw your Prune-Tang review. Two of them said your writeup was pretentious and stilted. But all the others thought it was great.” Joe told Ms. Cooni what the city editor had told him. Ms. Cooni sat quietly for a moment and then said, “So who’s right about your writing style, Joe? You or the people who enjoyed your article?” Joe said, “Right now, durned if I know. When it comes to writing – or to music – who’s to say? Come on, let’s take a walk. I’ll buy you lunch, and you can teach me some more musical buzzwords.”Bob Driver’s email address is tralee71@ Trump's supreme choice Driver’s SeatBob Driver The diva and the newspaper writer Joe Henderson Tampa group makes push to address gridlock 9911 Seminole Blvd., Seminole, FL 33772 727-397-5563  Fax: 727-397-5900  www.TBNweekly.comPublisher/President: Dan Autrey Accounting Manager: Andrea Marcarelli Advertising Director: Jay Rey Classi ed Advertising Manager: Wendy Edwards Executive Editor: Tom Germond tgermond@TBNweekly.comProduction Manager: David Brown Online editor: Suzette Porter Beach Beacon: Tom Germond Belleair/Beach Bee: Tom Germond Clearwater Beacon: Logan Mosby Dunedin Beacon: Tom Germond Largo Leader: Chris George Palm Harbor Beacon: Tom Germond Seminole Beacon: Tiffany Razzano Entertainment Editor: Lee Zumpe General Editorial editorial@TBNweekly.comCirculation: Phone: 727-397-5563 A judicial ‘weigh-in’… 45 years after Roe vs. WadeEditor: In 1973, the same year Roe vs. Wade’s abortion act was passed, a coworker disclosed to me that they knew of a single woman who had already had one abortion, and, was in the process of scheduling a second. When I asked them why, they indicated that they believed the expectant mother was single, had no supporting family, church, job or bene ts, and, was not of sound mind since having taken the life of her rst and only child at the age of 18. In 1949, a single mother with no job, three young mouths to feed and having recently experienced her husband’s death, in the midst of severe loneliness and grief, becomes pregnant. Worse yet, she is left in a foreign city to fend for herself and her children. Somehow, she manages to struggle through the experience, remarries a former high school sweetheart in 1951, and, moves back into her small hometown to raise her family. While these two stories share a very similar circumstance at the start, their outcome at the nish line is extremely different. On Feb. 8, 2018, the 1949 single mother would have turned 96. She was an amazing individual in stature, courage, grace and dignity, with a healthy respect for life and for countless others. During the last 68 years, I came to know her from a much deeper and broader perspective as to her capabilities, commitment and maternal love. There is nothing she failed to sacri ce for any of the family members throughout their adolescence, and well into their adulthood with their respective families, a beacon or measure for others to follow, a lioness at heart. Isn’t it ironic then, that after all of this, she found herself once again in the same dilemma at her end of her life, for at her age in adulthood she found the very same issues and questions of the unborn or soon to be aborted child. When she couldn’t speak, eat or stand up for herself anymore, and, she knew in her heart that her life cycle was coming to an end as her lifesustaining functions began to fail, as they will for all of us who have been given the opportunity to travel life’s journey and all of the wonderful and unknown experiences it has to offer. Who then will be best able to speak, care and take action on her behalf if not for the unborn child. Lorian Tripp LargoFounders con icted on immigrationEditor: Being a nation of immigrants, we are expected to assimilate over time, thus accepting our American values and living as one “E Pluribus Unum.” We are rst and foremost a nation of laws. Using children as pawns to promote borderless immigration, in order to satisfy political gain, is tantamount to chaos, anarchy, and is destructive to the prosperity and sovereignty of our nation as a whole. Our Founding fathers both questioned the goals and the methodology of immigration. Immigration has, since the founding of our country, brought with it prosperity and new ideas. Interestingly, both Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton had different points of view. Jefferson wanted to substantially increase French immigration to our country at a time when the French Revolution was occurring. Concerns about the dangers of immigration were reflected in Hamilton’s writings in which he wrote, “To admit foreigners indiscriminately to the rights of citizens, the moment they put foot on our country, as recommended in [Jefferson’s] message, would be nothing less than to admit the Trojan horse into the citadel of our liberty and sovereignty.” Pamela McAloon Palm Harbor


Beaches 11A Leader, July 19, 2018 By WAYNE AYERSTBN CorrespondentMADEIRA BEACH – John’s Pass will soon have another major draw for visitors. The Calypso Breeze, a cruise boat operated by Starlite Cruises, could soon begin offering afternoon lunch and evening dinner cruises, seven days a week, from John’s Pass Village. The boat, which can carry up to 150 passengers, is similar to the popular Starlite cruises the company currently runs out of Clearwater Beach and South Pasadena. The cruise boat service was part of an alcoholic beverage license approval the City Commission was considering at its July 11 regular meeting. The area where the boat will be based is zoned commercial marine and has had gambling boats operating there in the past.Parking and traf c concernsThe approval came despite concerns expressed by some John’s Pass merchants and business owners about overburdening an already tight parking situation and worsening traffic problems in the area. Congested roadways hampering safety vehicles’ ability to operate, and noise from ampli ed music on the boat’s outdoor deck were other issues. Phil Henderson, president of Starlight Cruises, said the boat would have a positive impact on John’s Pass Village, as the people taking the cruises would also patronize the businesses. In deciding to locate at John’s Pass Village, Henderson said “we want to be in the center of activity.” City Planning Director Linda Portal said the parking situation had been “a big concern” for the businesses at John’s Pass. But she said the landlord of the parking garage had provided more than twice the spaces required to the cruise company, based on city codes. Despite the assurances of adequate parking, Mark Hubbard of Hubbard’s Marina was not convinced. While he described Starlite Cruises, the boat operator, as “very reputable and very good for the community,” he said the parking garage is packed for six months during the season. “The idea of bringing in another operation and increasing the (parking) burden is negligent as far as the landlord is concerned,” Hubbard said. “As far as the city is concerned, parking is a major issue,” Hubbard said. “It is dif cult to try to take on another burden.” The parking garage was originally built by the Hubbard family but is no longer owned by them. Other John’s Pass business owners had concerns about the cruise boat’s impact on parking in the area. “This would create a parking nightmare,” said business owner George Lewis. “It’s backed up now, and I don’t know where everybody’s going to t.” “I have major concerns about the parking issues,” Lewis said. “It’s not appropriate for them to go in the place they want to go.” As an alternative, Lewis suggested the cruise boat “go across the Pass to Gator’s.” Missy Hahn, president of the Treasure Island and Madeira Beach Chamber of Commerce, said chamber members were “supporting Hubbard’s request not to issue this license.” “Parking is a problem,” Hahn said. “This is going to hurt the existing businesses.” Corey Hubbard spoke of public safety issues. “Already there are lines of cars waiting to get into the garage,” she said. “This will increase congestion and make it extremely dif cult for emergency vehicles to come inside the Village.” City Manager Jonathan Evans said he and his staff recognized the potential problems, and he has had meetings with safety of cials on the subject. “We have some ideas, and think we can improve the traffic flow,” Evans said. Commissioner Deby Weinstein, who lives along the cruise route, had concerns about noise from ampli ed speakers on the outdoor deck. At the commissioner’s request, the boat operators agreed to go beyond the city’s noise ordinance and limit outside music to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The city ordinances specify an 11 p.m. shutoff on weekends. Craig Taraszki, an attorney representing Starlite Cruises said, “We know the town’s criteria. Whatever we do will be compatible.” “I can’t think of a more perfect place to have a cruise boat come in and out of,” Taraszki said. “It’s a perfect use and will be a great asset to that area and to the community.”‘A good neighbor’A commission majority agreed, and voted 4 to 1 to approve the alcoholic beverage permit that clears the way for the cruise boat to operate, as planned at John’s Pass Village. Commissioner John Douthirt said he was satis ed. “You have answered the questions, and answered positively,” he told the cruise boat operators. “Parking would always be a problem, but his is an established and class operation. The Calypso Breeze will be a good neighbor and be good for business here,” Weinstein said. “The applicant has addressed all the issues and I think it’s a great concept,” said Mayor Maggi Black. “Looks nice,” said Commissioner Nancy Oakley. Commissioner Nancy Hodges cast the lone dissenting vote. “I have a good relationship with a lot of the tenants and merchants at the Pass,” Hodges said. “I feel that we need to really protect them.” She told the boat operators, “I’d love to have you there, I really would. I love your concept, but I’m very concerned about the parking and safety.”City approves new cruise boat for John’s Pass MADEIRA BEACH 727-596-2995  WeSellPinellas.com081017 America’s Leading Discount Real Estate Company WeWill Sell Your Home For As Low As$2,995!PAID AT CLOSING 071218 071218 Real estate newsmakers What’s Selling in Pinellas County 2 Bedroom / 2 Bath Largo $36,000 4 Bedroom / 4 Bath St. Petersburg $1,300,000 112 ROYAL PALM CIR, #112, LARGO, FL 33778 2 Bedrooms/2 Baths. $36,000. This large two bedroom, two bath 1977 double wide mobile home boasts 1,284 heated square feet of living space, as well as nice sized back yard in the pet section. Listed at $1,375,000, sold in September for $1,100,000 4 bedroom, 3.5 baths, 4,178 square feet. Start li ving the Florida lifestyle in this waterfront home. There’s a covered boat slip, shimmering pool and shady lanai for outdoor living enjoyment. 4 Bedroom / 3.5 Baths Clearwater Beach $1,100,000 SOLD SOLD Prestigious Yacht Club Estates Waterfront! Custom 4BR/4BA 2 Story waterfront pool home with over 4200 SF at the end of a Cul-de-sac! Wide open bay views and over 130 ft. of waterfront! Boater’s delight with 2 docks and lifts. Listed at $1,399,000 & SOLD by: 13500 Gulf Blvd #102, Madeira Beach. From the moment you enter this 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo you will be captivated by the remarkable views of Madeira Beach and the Gulf of Mexico. Sea Breeze Condominiums offers NO MINIMUM RENTAL PERIOD! This condo is furnished and ready for daily vacation rentals, offering the owner tremendous income potential! 2 Bedroom / 2 Bath Madeira Beach $549,000Rich RippetoeColdwell Banker/SunVista RealtyPamela RaymondRealty Executives Adamo & AssociatesEvan PedoneEngel & Všlkers Madeira BeachMartha ThornColdwell Banker/The Thorn Collection Premier Sotheby’s International Realty opens Clearwater of ceCLEARWATER – Premier Sotheby’s International Realty recently opened the doors to its new Clearwater of ce at 907 S. Fort Harrison Ave. Previously located in Belleair Bluffs, this new location was selected to better serve the Clearwater area’s clientele. “We couldn’t be more pleased with the growth and success that we’ve seen in this market,” said Judy Green, chief executive of cer at Premier Sotheby’s International Realty. “This new location, in the heart of Clearwater, creates more opportunities for success and further enforces our brand as a real estate leader in the community.” Victoria Horstmann serves as the managing broker of the Clearwater of ce.Century 21 Real Estate Champions welcomes Todd HarperMADEIRA BEACH – Century 21 Real Estate Champions recently announced Todd Harper has joined its rm as a sales associate. Harper will specialize in residential property sales in Belleair, Belleair Beach, Belleair Bluffs, Clearwater Beach, Dunedin, Indian Rocks Beach, Sand Key and Seminole. “We are thrilled to have Todd join our team,” said Ruth Cabella of Century 21 Real Estate Champions. “It’s an exciting time to be with the Century 21 System as we increase our market presence in along the Pinellas Suncoast Beaches.” Harper just successfully completed extensive training and licensing through the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, as a licensed real estate sales associate. “We believe training supports growth and professional excellence in the real estate industry,” Cabella added. “Performance-based training is necessary to assure that Century 21 associates maintain their competitive edge and offer the best service possible to their clients.” Raised in Seminole, Harper attended Seminole High School and the University of South Florida. He resides in Belleair Beach with his wife.Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices partners with Rutenberg HomesBerkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group recently announced a new partnership with Tampa Bay luxury home builder Marc Rutenberg. The Tampa Bay real estate rm will serve as the exclusive sales and marketing representative for Marc Rutenberg’s two magni cent custom new home communities coming soon. “We are thrilled to be teaming with Tampa Bay’s preeminent custom and green home builder and represent two of the most exciting new projects in the Tampa Bay region,” said Allen Crumbley, broker/owner of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group. “The reputation and expertise of Marc Rutenberg Homes combined with our company’s premier sales and marketing services align with our shared commitment to help new homebuyers achieve their dreams.” The two area real estate heavyweights, each known for the strength and extraordinary quality of their individual brands, are recognized for their expertise in luxury properties and for their customer-focused services. “We are honored that we have been asked to represent Marc Rutenberg Homes’ sensational new communities,” said Dewey Mitchell, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group broker/owner. “Our agents are market leaders who are experienced and understand the nuances of the luxury home building process.”Sandy Hartmann & Associates named a Neighborhood FavoriteSEMINOLE – Sandy Hartmann & Associates recently was nominated as a Neighborhood Favorite on According to, only 1 percent of businesses win this award. Keller Williams Gulfside Realty welcomes Amanda PayneLARGO – Amanda Pasdon Payne recently joined Keller Williams Gulfside Realty. Payne comes from a real estate legacy. A third-generation licensee, she grew up in a small town in Georgia which she left at the age of 26 determined to see the world. Her adventures landed her in Morgantown, West Virginia, where she earned her executive MBA from West Virginia University. Payne spent 10 years in West Virginia where she worked to better her community and the state. She served on various boards and aided in various community centered projects including the Girl Scouts, Habitat for Humanity and other child advocacy groups. She also served in the West Virginia House of Delegates for three consecutive terms and held the position of vice president and CFO of the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce. Payne believes her knowledge and experience will aid greatly in her real estate career. Coastal Properties announces groundbreaking of Pura Vida ResidencesCLEARWATER – A groundbreaking ceremony recently took place to mark the beginning of construction on Pura Vida Residences, a new beachfront condominium community on Clearwater Beach. The project is being marketed by Coastal Properties Group International. Heralded as the rst and only newly constructed beachfront condominiums in the area since 2014, Pura Vida will be situated on the northern part of Clearwater Beach within walking distance to Pier 60 and an abundance of dining and shopping venues. “These luxurious units will offer a heightened standard of living made more impressive by its location on the shores of award-winning Clearwater Beach,” said Alex Jansen, broker/owner, Coastal Properties Group International. Pura Vida comprises 22 luxury condominiums ranging from 2,0003,000 square feet. According to Kal Patel, Pura Vida’s project manager, completion is expected by year-end 2019. Response to a long-awaited new construction project on Clearwater Beach has been impressive with more than half of the units already sold. “This is a rare opportunity to purchase a new construction residence in an area where many people dream about living,” said Laren Jansen, listing agent at Coastal Properties Group International. “The soft sugary white sands of Clearwater Beach combined with the luxurious details of Pura Vida Residences present a lifestyle like no other.”Century 21 Coast to Coast’s David Zusman earns awardCLEARWATER – Century 21 Real Estate LLC recently recognized David Zusman of Century 21 Coast to Coast with the Century 21 Quality Service Producer Award. This national award is presented annually to those Century 21 af liates who receive a minimum return rate of 30 percent on their post-transaction client satisfaction surveys sent between Jan. 1 and Oct. 31, with a minimum satisfaction index of 90 percent. Surveys are emailed to all customers immediately after the purchase or sale of a home. “Receiving the Quality Service Award allows me to demonstrate even further to my clients that my commitment and dedication to their satisfaction during the real estate transaction is real and taken very seriously,” said Zusman. Zusman also earned the Century 21 Centurion Producer Award following his 2017 sales success. The award honors sales af liates of the Century 21 System that earn $263,000 in sales production or 70 closed transaction sides within a calendar year. “Achieving Centurion Producer status is a great milestone and with a continued effort and focus on my clients, I hope to continue on this path of success,” said Zusman.RE/MAX ACR Elite Group recognizes top agents BELLEAIR – RE/MAX ACR Elite Group Inc. recently named its top agents in the Belleair of ce in closed sales for the month of June. The No. 1 agent was Joanne Brems. The No. 2 agent was Tony Clouse. The No. 3 agent was Fred and Burt Rushing. Keller Williams Gulfside Realty names agent of the monthLARGO – Lindsay Wulff was recently named agent of the month for July 2018 at Keller Williams Gulfside Realty. According to a press release, Wulff earned this distinction thanks to her hard work, determination, and reliability. When she is not in the of ce working for her customers, Wulff can be found out in the eld making new contacts or making sure her customers are cared for to the best of her ability. Wulff continuously strives to stay educated on top trends in the real estate industry as well as staying ahead of the latest news in the business. She has inspired those new to the industry and sets high standards for her work. Realty Executives Adamo & Associates names top agentsSEMINOLE – Realty Executives Adamo & Associates recently announced its top agents for the month of June. Don Taylor was recognized as the top listing associate for the month. Mary Butler was recognized as the top sales associate. Team Heather Pourchot was recognized as the top listing team. The Forrest Murphy Team was recognized as the top sales team for June.071918


12A Bridal GuideLeader, July 19, 2018 Overcoming wedding weather dif culties TO HAVE AND TO HOLD Tampa Bay Newspapers Bridal GuidePlanning your big day Some wedding venues are known for their stunning landscapes, while others build their reputations on unique interiors that provide unforgettable ambiance. But regardless of where weddings take place, guests are liable to discuss the food served at the reception. Guests might rave about the escargot or complain that the sh was aky, but couples who choose reception menus wisely can go a long way toward ensuring there are more compliments than complaints once the dinner bell rings.  Don’t zero in on specialties. According to The Knot 2017 Real Weddings Study, a survey of nearly 13,000 brides and grooms who tied the knot in 2017, the average wedding hosted 136 guests. While couples might be tempted by specialty dishes when choosing their wedding menus, couples who are hosting dozens, if not hundreds, of guests should keep things simple.  Consider potential allergies. In regard to entres, make sure guests with food allergies can choose something that won’t make them sick. According to Food Allergy Research & Education, an organization devoted to improving the quality of life of individuals with food allergies, some common foods cause the majority of allergic reactions. Peanuts, soy, sesame, and shellfish are among the most common food allergies, according to FARE. FARE also notes that allergies to wheat, milk and eggs are common in children. While such foods can still be served at wedding receptions, make sure to also include foods that are unlikely to trigger allergic reactions. Couples can even ask guests to inform them of any food allergies.  Don’t hesitate to offer a favorite food. While specialty entres might not be a great choice, especially at large receptions where lots of mouths must be fed, a couple who has a favorite food that’s symbolic of their relationship should not hesitate to offer it during the cocktail hour. For example, a couple who met in Thailand may want to offer a favorite Thai dish.  Offer an elaborate dessert. The last bite guests will take is dessert, so couples who want their guests to go home raving about the food may want to offer something special after the entres have been taken away. Some guests may not indulge, but those who do might end their nights thinking about the delicious dessert they enjoyed as the festivities drew to a close. If the dessert is especially unique, offer something more traditional alongside it for more hesitant guests. Choosing a wedding menu should be fun. Menus should re ect not only couples’ tastes but also include some popular foods so no one goes home hungry. How to choose a wedding reception menu How to preserve your wedding memories Weddings are memorable for a host of reasons. While couples remember their weddings because they mark the day they of cially tied the knot, guests may remember weddings for other reasons, including the food served at the reception. Some feel it’s good luck for couples to get rain on their wedding days, but many couples would trade in a little of that luck for clear skies. However, weather can be ckle, and couples who build contingency plans into their wedding festivities are much more likely to overcome inclement weather than couples without such plans.  Have solutions for sun and heat. Couples don’t want their wedding guests or bridal party members passing out due to heat exhaustion. Make sure to offer shade if the ceremony or reception is outside. Stock the area with cold bottles of water or a chilled lemonade stand. Have fans and umbrellas available just in case guests need a way to protect themselves from the sun.  Strong storms. Over the course of hot and humid days, storm clouds can develop and roll in. Afternoon thunderstorms are quite common on summer days. Accommodate for sudden downpours by hosting early luncheon receptions or ensure there is a plan B that includes a covered area. Couples can stash spare shoes or even rain slickers in a car to keep their wedding attire protected against rain as they dash between venues or take photos.  Embrace the rain. Vivid skies with lightning or overcast days can make for unique and striking wedding photography. Couples needn’t look at the downside of rain, but rather they should see the opportunities for one-of-akind memories.  Keep a generator on standby. Storms may knock out power. Some reception halls or banquet facilities may have their own backup power, but be sure to address how power outages are handled. If need be, bring in a portable generator to keep the reception room cooled by fans.  Plan for wind. Coastal outdoor weddings present beautiful backdrops for weddings. But being near the shore may mean accepting windy conditions. Tie down tents and use weights to keep wedding programs or other papers from catching a current. The bride and her wedding party should opt for freeowing tresses so they needn’t worry about intricate updos coming undone.  Maintain a sense of humor. It’s impossible to predict wedding day weather, but staying calm, going with the ow and laughing at things they can’t control can help couples make memories that last a lifetime. Summer approaches with the promise of warm temperatures. Weather is one reason why summer is such a popular season to tie the knot. But just because sunny skies and rising mercury are par for the course, that does not mean Mother Nature won’t invite herself to the festivities — and attempt to upstage happy couples in the process. Weddings can be amazing, but they only last a few hours. Memories can be forever if they are effectively documented. The following are some ways for couples to permanently memorialize their wedding days.  Dry the bouquet. Wedding bouquets can be freeze-dried and/ or chemically preserved so that the colors, textures and the volume of the blooms can appear just as vibrant as they were on couples’ wedding days. After preservation, the bouquet can be displayed in a vase or in a specially prepared shadow box with other mementos.  Create a custom locket. Brides can wear a piece of their wedding gown day after day with a custom necklace or locket. All they need to do is trim a small piece of the lace or other embellishment from the gown and enclose it in the locket. Jewelry designers also may be able to convert a section of the gown pattern into metal through a casting process.  Have guests sign the label. Purchase a special bottle of wine or champagne and ask guests to sign the label or the bottle itself. Store the bottle until a special occasion, such as a memorable anniversary, and then toast to a happy marriage.  Make a cake replica. Ask an artist to make a miniature replica of the wedding cake out of pottery. Put the clay cake out for display or ask for it to be made small enough to serve as a Christmas tree ornament.  Teddy bear transformation: Have tuxedo fabric or wedding gown material turned into a keepsake teddy bear. Bowman Bears produces such bears, which can be passed down to future generations.  Create bouquet jewelry. Encapsulate favorite wedding owers into a resin pendant, bracelet or earrings.  Frame the invitation. Display the wedding invitation in a beautiful frame with custom matting.  Revisit the site. On their anniversaries, couples can visit their ceremony site or have brunch or dinner at the venue where the reception took place. Take an “after” picture to display with the “before” shot from the wedding day.  Make an invitation ornament. Cut the wedding invitation into strips and place it inside of a hollow glass ornament. Seal the top and hang with a ribbon.  Design a greeting card scrapbook. Turn all of those special handwritten messages and well-wishes into a scrapbook so that memories can be revisited time and again. The planning may take months and the wedding mere hours, but well-documented wedding day memories can last forever. Couples’ wedding days are momentous occasions, and couples want their memories of the day they tied the knot to endure long after the nal guest has departed. 071918 WEDDINGS ON A WHIM $250 Beach, Park or Indoor Weddings Ready on a Whim or Ready when you are.2017 Couple’s Choice Award WeddingsOnaWhim.com727-581-3446 p BAYSIDE EVENT RENTALS Tents, Tables, Chairs, Linens, and more 727-522-8368 E DDINGS O O O O O N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N N A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A A WH IM I I I I I I I I I I I I BAYSIDEEVEN T T T T T T T T T T T T T T T T T T T B r i d a l G u i d e Bridal Guide JERRY LUKAS PHOTOGRAPHY Weddings  Beach Portraits  High School Seniors  Business Head  jlukasphoto@gmail.com727585-1528 g COMING SOON! Our New Monthly Tampa Bay Celebrations Section CELEBRATING ALL OF YOUR SPECIAL OCCASIONS For More Information on Advertising Call Us at 727-397-5563


Leader, July 19, 2018 071918 SUNSET POINT  23988 U.S. Hwy. 19 N.  (727) 441-3591 Ft. Harrison Ave.  (727) 581-7472 Pasadena Ave.  (727) 347-2938 ST. PETERSBURG (727) 522-3692 PALM HARBOR (727) 787-1866 ZEPHYRHILLS (813) 788-7833 PORT RICHEY (727) 848-4746 BROOKSVILLE (352) 597-9689 SPRING HILL (352) 200-2034 PLANT CITY (813) 754-4813 NORTH TAMPA (813) 935-0824 SUN CITY CENTER (813) 634-8451 BRITTON PLAZA (813) 831-9442 BRANDON (813) 681-4046 INVERNESS (352) 726-1916 HOMOSASSA (352) 621-8000 ELLENTON (941) 722-7200 BRADENTON (941) 747-6966 PORT CHARLOTTE (941) 623-4918 NORTH SARASOTA (941) 355-3800 SOUTH SARASOTA (941) 922-6028 VENICE (941) 451-5070 N. LAKELAND (863) 682-1965 S. LAKELAND (863) 646-6663 WINTER HAVEN (863) 297-8000 27 Locations in the Tampa Bay area


Leader, July 19, 2018 071918


Leader, July 19, 2018 071918


Leader, July 19, 2018 SEMINOLE  7501 Seminole Blvd.  (727) 391-6642 LARGO MALL  10500 Ulmerton Rd., Ste. 740  (727) 586-5553 FT. HARRIS O S. PASAD E