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Outdoors & Recreation
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Have you ever heard about another person’s experience, wondered what it felt like and then went through it yourself? That happened to me today.

Just this morning, I was reading compelling accounts of a life lived among chimpanzees in the African forests. Famed primatologist Jane Goodall has startled the world with her many discoveries - chimps use tools, panic in water, can die of grief. Startling too is her frank admission that, upon hearing of the death of a chimp she knew for years, she grieves.

I thought about the 330 dolphins that Capt. John Heidemann and I study in our local waters. I ruefully realized that time has muted my intense rebuff of news that good ol’ Tanks, Slight, Face, her innocent calf Facet, Doodle, Qball and others had gone ahead. I wondered: How I would feel if one of the 70 dolphins I know so well died?
 ... Read More 
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Another week down and another cold front has past. It can be difficult at this time of year to execute the game plan you’ve had in your head all week. Clear blue skies and a northerly breeze often mean tough conditions for fishing.

Take it or leave it - that’s your choice. As someone who earns a living through fishing, I often find myself on the water on a lot of days that might look pretty to the untrained eye. However, from an angling standpoint, they can be a recipe for failure. Here are a couple of shallow water tidbits that might help you put a couple of extra fish in the boat on those less than perfect days.
 ... Read More 
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Pinellas County UF/IFAS Extension’s Traveling Tree Walk was recently recognized with a 2014 Friends of Our Urban Forest Award for Outstanding Public Educational Program.

The Florida Urban Forestry Council gives out the awards for seven categories on an annual basis. A record number of nominations were received for 2014.

“We are very excited to receive this award,” said Lara Miller, the creator of the project and Pinellas County’s Natural Resources Extension Agent. “The Traveling Tree Walk teaches visitors to our parks, preserves and other local communities about the benefits trees provide in a fun, interactive way.”
 ... Read More 
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BELLEAIR - The Belleair Sunset 5K and Fun Run will be held Saturday, Jan. 24, 5:30 p.m. through the heart of town.

A 5-mile fun run will be held for people who do not wish to participate in the 5K race.

Entry fees for the 5K or 1-mile fun run are $30 for ages 13 and up, $20 for ages 5-12. The fee is $15 for the post race party only. Registration includes a shirt for each runner, 5K awards to the top three males and females in each age group and post race party, which includes beer, wine, cookie bar, food court, live music and more.
 ... Read More 
LARGO - The 4Kids Classic 5K Run and 1-Mile Fun Run will be Saturday, Jan. 24, at Walsingham Park, 12615 102nd Ave. N.

Check-in time will be 1 to 3 p.m. The 5K Run will begin at 3 p.m. The 1-mile race will be at 2 p.m. Registration fees are $35 for the 5K race and $20 for the 1-mile race. Children 5 and younger may walk for free. A children’s T-shirt may be purchased for $10. There also will be music and food at the event.

Online registration will end on Jan. 21. Participants can still register for the event on the day of the race.

The Suncoast Hospice 4Kids Classic supports the pediatric hospice and palliative care programs and services at Suncoast Hospice for those newborn to age 21. These services include specialized medical care and therapies, emotional support for patients and their families, caregiver education and training and access to trained volunteers.
 ... Read More 
Tuesday, January 7
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A short break in what has been some really bad weather (at least for fishing) earlier this week offered an opportunity to visit some north Pinellas redfish flats. Although we’re still right in the middle of our winter season, spring patterns are starting to take hold.

Mullet are making their way back onto the flats in force. Anywhere that the mullet have settled in would be top places to check. Taking advantage of the light winds and morning low tides have helped to locate tailing redfish. Once located, as always it’s required a stealthy approach.
 ... Read More 
TARPON SPRINGS - Local folk and bluegrass band 2PM is scheduled to perform at the next Music in the Woods Series at Brooker Creek Preserve on Sunday, Jan. 18 from 4:30 until 7 p.m. The performance takes place at the Brooker Creek Preserve Environmental Education Center’s outdoor music pavilion.

A donation of $5 for adults is suggested. Children 12 and under are free. Donations go to support habitat restoration, educational programs, and the work of volunteers by providing tools and supplies.

Sponsored by the Friends of Brooker Creek Preserve, the Music in the Woods Series offers visitors the opportunity to witness the visual beauty of Brooker Creek Preserve while also enjoying the natural sounds of the outdoor environment harmonizing with the musical offerings of local performers.

Visitors are encouraged to bring along a picnic dinner, beverages and lawn chairs or blankets. Alcohol and pets are not allowed. The event takes place rain or shine. Brooker Creek Preserve’s Environmental Education Center auditorium will be the rain location.
 ... Read More 
PALM HARBOR - Registration is underway for the Innisbrook Wildcard Tennis Tournament Feb. 7-9 at Innisbrook Resort, 36750 U.S. 19 N.

The winner will receive a wild card into the main draw of the $25,000 Innisbrook Women’s Open March 22-29.

Entry fee for the wildcard event is $50. The format will be two of three tiebreak sets, ITF rules, on clay courts. Deadline to enter is Feb. 6.

Register at the Innisbrook Tennis Center. For more information, call 942-5241.
 ... Read More 
ST. PETERSBURG - Birds of prey will featured during Raptor Fest at Boyd Hill Nature Preserve, 1101 Country Club Way S., Saturday, Feb. 7, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The festivities include trained raptor in free flight, live birds of prey in exhibits and presentations, dissect owl pellets with Sensing Nature LLC, raptorial dinosaur talk, environmental exhibitors, activities for children and families, tram tours, bird walks, live music and food trucks.

Those attending should park at Lake Vista Recreation Center, 1401 62nd Ave. S., for a free shuttle every 20 minutes.

More information on Boyd Hill Nature Preserve and Parks and Recreation programs call 893-7234. Visit www.stpeteparksrec.org.
 ... Read More 
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Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
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