ST. PETERSBURG - Weedon Island Preserve - often referred to as “the best kept secret in Pinellas County” - won’t be a secret for much longer. The world's largest running magazine, Runner's World, features Weedon Island as its “Rave Run” in the April 2015 issue.
It includes a two-page spread showcasing a runner along a stretch of boardwalk, surrounded by mangroves. The photo was taken from the 45-foot observation tower, which offers panoramic views of Tampa Bay.
So why is Weedon Island suddenly receiving this international, high-profile attention? Running is gaining in popularity and more people are looking for ways to connect with nature. Weedon Island fulfills both of these desires.
Spring is official now, and a couple of cool fronts this week will only help to prolong this great window of fishing for our region. Inshore water temperatures are in the low to mid 70s and offshore waters are holding steady around 72 degrees. These temperatures are ideal for fishing, depending on the tide fish should be willing to cooperate throughout the entire day.
Inshore fishing surprisingly has been a bit slow the past several days. Blame it on either the moon or high pressure; I’m not really sure why. However, eternal optimism suggests we could be on the verge of a major breakthrough. Weather this week and post new moon tides could spur on a big bite.
Warm temperatures and clear, sunny days between some of the coldest weather of the year assisted Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission biologists and partners in counting an all-time high number of manatees during this year’s statewide aerial survey.
The FWC reported a preliminary count of 6,063 manatees statewide.
During the February count, a team of 20 observers from 11 organizations counted 3,333 manatees on Florida’s east coast and 2,730 on the west coast of the state.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH - The Indian Rocks Beach Homeowners Association will be holding the 16th annual Guppy’s Gulfside Gallop 5K run/walk fundraiser on Friday, April 3.
This event will raise money for the many civic projects funded by the Indian Rocks Beach Homeowners Association.
The race will be held directly on the beach, behind the County Park, 1700 Gulf Blvd., 1 mile north of Walsingham Road and 1-mile south of Belleair Causeway. The beach race starts and finishes at the park. Runners proceed south along the water’s edge to the 1-mile or 5K turn-around sign and return northbound to the county park, tracked with bib transponder timing chips, sponsored by Plumlee Gulf Beach Realty.
BELLEAIR BLUFFS - Zoe Lombard, 22, of Belleair Bluffs had never heard of team handball until last year. Now she’s a leading candidate to be on the U.S. Olympic team.
Lombard’s acquaintance with the sport came because she played soccer all her life, including right through her final year at Boston College.
“It was during my senior year that I got an email inviting me to an open tryout for the handball team and the team residency program,” she said. “I thought, ‘Why not go for an opportunity to represent our country?’ So I did the try-out and got the residency program.”
Do you watch and wait for anything, such as your stock market investments, next visit with your grandkids, graduation, promotion, or vacation? If so, you have something in common with bottlenose dolphin field biology.
Investors know the watch-and-wait drill well: You watch stock market ups and downs, but not too closely, because it is long-term performance that reflects the merit of a particular investment. Or so they say.
It can be thrilling to watch a sea turtle crawl onto the beach at night and dig a large hole in the sand to lay dozens of eggs. Just remember that “Do not disturb” is the best behavior to follow when observing a nesting sea turtle.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission asks people not to get too close, shine lights on, or take flash photos of nesting sea turtles.