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Clearwater Beacon
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Photo by JORDAN OSTER
Clearwater’s Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival on Clearwater Beach runs through Sunday, April 13. This sand sculpture of Superman is one of the many spectacular sculptures that go with this year’s theme, Beach Walk Hall of Fame, featuring iconic movies.
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CLEARWATER - A Clearwater woman remains in the Pinellas County Jail on $50,000 bond Monday night, charged with DUI manslaughter in connection with an April 13 fatality crash at Missouri Avenue and Belleair Road.

The crash occurred at 9:37 p.m. Michael B. Ballard, 24, of Clearwater died from his injuries just after 10 p.m. at Morton Plant Hospital. Clearwater police said he was wearing a helmet.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - A 54-year-old Clearwater bicyclist was in critical condition after being involved in a crash with a truck around 11:44 p.m. April 12, according to a Clearwater police report.

The man on the bicycle, whose identify was not yet released, was taken to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg after the crash.

The truck was driven by Michael Patry, 44, of Clearwater, who was driving east on Drew Street when the bicyclist rode directly into his path, the police report said. The road was closed for more than two hours as police investigated the crash.
 ... Read More 
Thursday, April 10
CLEARWATER - A request by Clearwater Grande LLC to add 10 units to its proposed Hampton Inn and Suites cleared its first hurdle on April 3 when the Clearwater City Council unanimously agreed to approve an amendment to the company’s existing development agreement with the city.

But that approval does not become effective unless the council approves it a second time, potentially at the April 16 council meeting.

Clearwater Grande owns a 1.437-acre parcel on the south side of South Gulfview Boulevard, approximately 894 feet west of Gulf Boulevard. Its 91-room Quality Inn and associated parking lot now occupy the east side of the property, with the hotel in a north/south orientation. The property is in the Tourist (“T”) District and the Clearwater Pass Character District, as well as being in the Resort Facilities High (“RFH”) category of the city’s Future Land Use Plan.
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CLEARWATER - Women of all ages and athletic levels will flock to Coachman Park on Sunday, April 13, to run in the 11th annual Iron Girl Half Marathon and 5K races. Participants can continue to sign up even through the morning of the race.

Both races will include running over the Clearwater Memorial Causeway bridge, and the half marathon will also go over the Sand Key Bridge and through Sand Key Park.
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CLEARWATER - Motorists traveling the city of Clearwater should be aware of the following road closures:

- Saturday, April 12 - Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue from Metto to LaSalle Streets will be closed from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. due to the Soul Fest event. Detour routes are Pennsylvania or Myrtle avenues.

- Saturday, April 12 through Saturday, April 19 - The intersection of Belleair Road at U.S. 19 will be closed so the FDOT can place girders on spans of the southbound portion of the overpass bridge at Belleair Road.
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CLEARWATER - Sixty-five spaces of Parking Lot #32 will temporarily close effective April 15 for 15 months due to the construction of a new hotel development at the site of the former Adam s Mark Hotel. The current parking lot is located at 332 S. Gulfview Blvd. and is where the former Adam's Mark hotel once stood.

Beach visitors can park in the parking garages at the Hyatt Regency and at Surf Style, located at 301 and 311 S. Gulfview Blvd., respectively. People also can use the on-street parking spaces on Hamden Drive, Coronado Drive, and Fifth Street.

In 2008, the Adam's Mark hotel was demolished after the property was purchased by a developer.
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CLEARWATER - Joshua Magidson, chairman of Ruth Eckerd Hall’s board of directors, recently announced that Zev Buffman, president and CEO of Ruth Eckerd Hall Inc., has received a contract extension through December 2016.

“The decision reached at this week’s board of directors meeting was unanimous,” Magidson said in a press release. “Zev has led us through challenging times, all the while never wavering in his commitment and dedication to Ruth Eckerd Hall, the city of Clearwater and the entire Tampa Bay community. His determination overseeing the renovation and reopening of the Capitol Theatre in 10 months is just one of many examples of his leadership and passion for the performing arts.”

“Upon joining this organization just over two years ago, I made public a list of all the projects targeted for our staff and board to accomplish and we are well on our way,” said Buffman. “I knew that we were up to the task and that we could see multi challenges through. We still have many more exciting projects to complete and I cannot wait for our amazing team to complete them.”
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CLEARWATER - FrankCrum recently presented a check to Trinity Cafe for $125,000. The funds were raised through the seventh annual FrankCrum Golf Invitational.

This year’s donation represents the largest amount raised in the history of the tournament. This brings the cumulative amount raised by the annual event beyond the $600,000 mark.

More than seven years ago, Frank W. Crum Jr., president and CEO of FrankCrum, expressed a desire to host a fundraiser for his favorite charity. Thus, the FrankCrum Invitational benefiting Trinity Cafe was born. This year’s event took place on Feb. 18 at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club. More than 268 golfers participated.
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CLEARWATER - Check Handyman Inc. recently launched www.checkhandyman.com as an information portal for Tampa Bay metro homeowners to find information about remodeling and remodeling solutions.

With articles being added almost every day and an online monthly newsletter of home improvement tips, the website is a resource for remodeling and repairs information. Future plans include educational guides on selecting a remodeling and remodeling contractor, professional advice from local remodeling experts, and a question-and-answer forum for Tampa Bay homeowners.

“Our goal is to be the best home and family resource center and information portal for assisting all Tampa Bay homeowners with their remodeling needs,” said Frank Karakostas, owner of Clearwater-based Check Handyman Inc.
 ... Read More 
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Community Calender
• Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Boy Scouts Troop 10 meeting
DUNEDIN – Boy Scouts Troop 10 meets Wednesdays, 7 to 8:30 p.m., between September through June at 927 Louden Ave. Call Peggy Ross at 641-5074.
Chess Club meeting
SEMINOLE – The Seminole Chess Club meets Wednesday, 6 to 9 p.m., at the Seminole Community Library, 9200 113th St. N. Everyone is welcome, though they should know the basics of how to play. Chess sets will be provided and there is no charge to play. Call Alan Bohrer at 748-2522 for more information.
 ... Read More 
Largo Toastmasters meeting
LARG0 – Largo Star Toastmasters Club 5933 meets Wednesdays, 12:05 to 1:05 p.m., at the Young Rainey Star Center, 7887 Bryan Dairy Road No. 120 in Largo. For more information, call John Rouisse at 488-8010 or email johnrouisse@yahoo.com.

The club is open to all residents and workers in the Largo, Pinellas Park and Seminole areas. A Toastmasters club provides a supportive and positive environment where members have the opportunity to develop their oral communication and leadership skills. Come watch as members present speeches, develop leadership skills by serving in various club positions and participate in Table Topics sessions in a relaxed yet structured one-hour setting.
 ... Read More 
Suncoast Quilting Circle
ST. PETERSBURG – The Suncoast Quilting Circle will meet Wednesday, April 16, 10 a.m., in Heritage Hall, at Pilgrim Congregational Church, 6315 Central Ave. The event is open to the public. For information, call 821-1324.  

Patricia Knoechel, sister of Eleanor Burns of Quilt in a Day, will give a sneak preview of the new book, “Mystery Quilt,” arriving in the spring of 2014. She will share lots of patterns, such as the new honeycomb, Christmas tree and wreath, nouveau wedding ring, chimneys and cornerstones. Attendees will have an opportunity to purchase patterns and Quilt in a Day products after the program.
 ... Read More 
Tinnitus Support Group meeting
LARGO – The Tinnitus Support Group will meet Wednesday, April 16, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., in Jenkins Room C, at Largo Public Library, 120 Central Park Drive. The group is led by Sal Gentile and Dr. Patricia Harrington, a tinnitus specialist. For information, email Gentile at salgent13@gmail.com.
 ... Read More 
Wednesday afternoon book club
TARPON SPRINGS – The Tarpon Springs Library offers a Wednesday afternoon book club called “Expand Your Horizons.” Fiction and  non-fiction books from a variety of genres are discussed each month. For the date of the next meeting, call 943-4922 or email tslibrary@pplc.us.
 ... Read More 
• Thursday, April 17, 2014
Coffee with a Cop
PINELLAS PARK – The Pinellas Park Police Department will kick off its new program, Coffee with a Cop, Thursday, April 17, 10 a.m. to noon, at Starbucks, 7350 U.S. 19 N. This is a great opportunity to come meet and speak with a local police officer. Call 244-1715 for more information.
 ... Read More 
Daisy Grant Fashion Show and Luncheon
CLEARWATER – The GFWC/Clearwater Woman’s club will host its 43rd annual Daisy Grant Fashion Show and Luncheon on Thursday, April 17, at the Belleair Country Club, 1 Country Club Lane.  

Bobbi Tafelski, manager of the Northwood Plaza store, will comment on fashions by Patchington. Models are members of the club and also feature Margaret Wood Burnside, editor of the Tampa Bay Magazine. The theme is “Casual Elegance” and was introduced by Coco Chanel when she created “the little black dress” and started a fashion revolution by liberating women from the corset.  

The Daisy fundraiser awards grants to nonprofit organizations in the Clearwater community, including Clothes to Kids, Meals on Wheels, Hacienda Girls Ranch, Clearwater Library System, and many others. Gift baskets will be offered through raffle tickets.

Event tickets are $45 or $55 for patrons and include a listing in the program. Make reservations by April 10 by calling 726-6410.
 ... Read More 
Dining in the Dark
ST. PETERSBURG – The Foundation Fighting Blindness, a national nonprofit focused on sight-saving research, will open guests’ eyes to the challenges of the visually impaired at its fifth annual Tampa Bay/St. Petersburg Dining in the Dark on Thursday, April 17, at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf Club in St. Petersburg.  

To recognize their philanthropic and professional accomplishments in the Tampa Bay community, the foundation will present its Visionary Award to Joyce and Walter Larson, philanthropist and founder of Larson Communities, and to Judy Genshaft, University of South Florida president.  

Serving as master of ceremonies again this year will be Dick Crippen, sports personality and Tampa Bay Rays senior adviser.  

Dining in the Dark is a distinctive sensory awareness experience in which guests participate in an unforgettable dining adventure, in complete darkness.

To get a glimpse into the lives of the blind, diners will wear special light-blocking blindfolds and enjoy their entrée using only their heightened senses of smell, sound, taste and touch.

The one-of-a-kind event will benefit the foundation’s cutting-edge research into preventions, treatments and cures for vision-robbing retinal degenerative diseases like macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, Usher syndrome and related conditions.  

Individual tickets are $150 each and sponsor packages begin at $1,000. For ticket and sponsorship information, call Kimberly Marlow at 954-496-0776 or email KMarlow@FightBlidness.org.  
 ... Read More 
Gaming Club
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH – The Seminole Recreation Division now offers an adult Gaming Club that meets the third Thursday of every month, 5 to 9 p.m., at the Holland G. Mangum Recreation Complex, 9100 113th St. N.  

This group is open to individuals 16 and older. Various board and card games will be available. This program is free for members and $3 for nonmembers.  

Call 391-8345 for more information.
 ... Read More 
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