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St. Pete Times

  1. French pastry cafe opens in Largo


    LARGO — A cafe with French pastries made in-house held its grand opening this month in the heart of downtown Largo.

  2. Forum planned for Treasure Island's new tennis and golf facility

    Local Government

    TREASURE ISLAND — Residents will get their first chance on Thursday to see the new design concept for the city's Treasure Bay Golf and Tennis Center.

  3. People's Budget Review opens survey on St. Petersburg residents' priorities

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — Formed in 2012, the People's Budget Review has been a force to be reckoned with in the city's budget cycle.

  4. Young women recognized for scholarship and community service

    Human Interest


    More than 800 supporters of the Essence of Ebony Pearls attended the debutante scholarship celebration presented by the Zeta Upsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

    On March 18, more than 800 supporters of the Essence of Ebony Pearls attended the debutante scholarship cotillion presented by the ladies of Zeta Upsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. The formal event included waltzing, a father-daughter dance and highlights of the girls’ achievements.
  5. Seminole dementia facility uses animatronic pets for memory care patient comfort

    Nursing Homes


    Posters of Life magazine covers featuring Bing Crosby, Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn line the walls of the Clare Bridge Place at Brookdale's Freedom Square, where about 10 residents gathered, watching the Hallmark Channel's Home and Family.

    Marie McCauseland, 87, pets “Clare,” an animatronic companion pet at Clare Bridge at Freedom Square in Seminole. Kathy Breese helps her with the exercise, which can help dementia patients reduce anxiety and stress.
  6. Under new leadership, Pinellas construction board starts judging contractors again

    Local Government

    LARGO — For years, a Pinellas County committee judged complaints against contractors without legal guidance, or transparency, or even rules.

    Gay Lancaster, interim executive director at the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board, leads a committee meeting Wednesday where the agency ruled on homeowners' complaints against contractors. It's the first time the panel has met in weeks, after a Tampa Bay Times investigation raised questions about the way the agency operates and treats consumers and contractors. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  7. Joint Pinellas effort has reduced number of unwanted pets and strays that are euthanized

    Local Government

    A five-year effort by Pinellas County animal welfare agencies coordinating data and resources helped lower the number of unwanted and stray animals being euthanized and trapped in shelters.

    A five-year effort by Pinellas County animal welfare agencies coordinating data and resources helped lower the number of unwanted and stray animals being euthanized and trapped in shelters. Euthanasia is down 40 percent and stray pickup has dropped 25 percent since 2012 between Pinellas County Animal Services, Humane Society of Pinellas, SPCA Tampa Bay and Friends of Strays. This stray cat and her litter were brought to animal services in 2013. [JIM DAMASKE   |   Times]
  8. Want to learn more about Tarpon Springs' Greektown district? Now there's an app for that

    Human Interest


    The connections to Greece are everywhere. You can spot them as you watch workers fill wooden tubs with sponges outside the tourist shops on Dodecanese Boulevard. You can smell them as the scent of fresh Greek pastries floats down the sidewalk on Athens Street. You can hear them as you stand …

    Tourists are helped from the deck of the St. Nicholas VII, a sponge-diving exhibition boat at the Sponge Docks. Visitors can learn much about the area’s history by using the new tour app.
  9. Rick Baker confident in Tampa Bay Rowdies' MLS pitch but uncertain of possible pitfalls

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — Rick Baker's gut feels pretty good about the Tampa Bay Rowdies' chances to become a Major League Soccer franchise playing in front of 18,000 screaming fans in an iconic waterfront stadium.

    The St. Petersburg City Council approved a May 2 referendum that would allow voters to decide whether to let the Tampa Bay Rowdies expand historic Al Lang Stadium to 18,000 seats. The Rowdies' goal is to position the franchise to make the jump to Major League Soccer in the coming years. [Courtesy of Tampa Bay Rowdies]
  10. Pinellas Suncoast fire district spent more than 10 times budget for lawyers


    INDIAN ROCKS BEACH — A small fire department that services several coastal communities spent more than 10 times what was budgeted for legal fees last year, the result of several lawsuits and personnel disputes.

    Pinellas Suncoast Fire Chief Salvatore D’Angelo says legal action was needed.
  11. St. Petersburg City Council wants to hire some help navigating a sea of paperwork

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG —Since the beginning of the year, City Council members have had to digest 4,522 pages of documents, attend meetings that lasted hundreds of hours and deal with resident complaints late into the night.

    St. Petersburg City Council member  Darden Rice, seen here at a 2016 meeting at City Hall, has proposed hiring four aides to help council members research issues and prepare for meetings. [MONICA HERNDON   |   Times]
  12. Mayor Rick Kriseman: Ridership numbers show a need for ferry service between Tampa and St. Petersburg


    CLEARWATER — With the ferry service between St. Petersburg and Tampa ending in April, St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman vowed in front of the Pinellas County Commission to find money to help bring it back in November.

    Passengers board the Cross-Bay Ferry near the Tampa Convention Center.  JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times
  13. New Sunpass lanes open on Sunshine Skyway


    We recently traveled south over the Sunshine Skyway bridge at evening rush hour after miles of traffic getting to the bridge from the 118th Avenue entrance on I-275.

    New Sunpass lanes are open on the Sunshine Skyway.
  14. Taste of the Islands expands with downtown St. Petersburg location


    ST. PETERSBURG — When Taste of the Islands opened on 34th Street in 1992, Yvonne Thompson said she wasn't sure it had been a good idea to get into the restaurant industry.

    Chef George Brown, left, and cashier Audie Damon, give to go service with a smile at the new Taste of The Islands Restaurant, located at  364 1st Ave. NE (across from Williams Park) in St. Petersburg.  LARA CERRI   |   Times
  15. Trial date scheduled for John Jonchuck, charged with throwing daughter off Dick Misener bridge


    John Jonchuck is scheduled to stand trial next February, three years after he was arrested on charges of throwing his 5-year-old daughter off the Dick Misener bridge.

    John Jonchuck is accused of throwing his daughter off the Dick Misener Bridge.