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Aug. 28 issue

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Officer Friendly
Clearwater police officer Fredrick Lise finds plenty of eager and wide-eyed youngsters Aug. 12 when he visited a local preschool on North Highland Avenue. Clearwater PD and the Early Learning Coalition of Pinellas County have teamed up to offer Officer Friendly’s Book Club.
CLEARWATER - After years in financial limbo, the city of Clearwater can finally put to bed a project that has been years in the making.

City officials learned earlier this month that a request to the Army Corps of Engineers seeking an exception for a greater financial responsibility for the dredging of Stevenson Creek has been approved.

The approval comes after a lengthy back and forth between the city and the Corps, along with considerable input and aid by Congressman David Jolly, who lobbied on behalf of the city for the exception.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Clearwater city council members voted Aug. 20 to approve a clarification agreement for the operation of three red-light cameras maintained by RedFlex Traffic Systems.

The 4-1 split decision, with Mayor George Cretekos casting the dissenting vote, extends the city’s agreement with the company for an additional two years.

The decision comes after months of discussions and reviews in light of a 2014 ruling by the Florida Fourth District Court of Appeals, which has called into question the legality of red-light programs in the state.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - In a special meeting of the Clearwater City Council on Aug. 17, officials agreed to allocate $250,000 to the development of a site plan to redevelop and improve Crest Lake Park.

Clearwater Parks and Recreation Director Kevin Dunbar sought guidance from council on the future of the park, which is budgeted to undergo $1.5 million in renovations in the coming years. Dunbar brought the matter before the council in response to inquiries over the status of the project by council members at a prior meeting.

According to Dunbar, the Crest Lake Park project, which will include improvements to its design, amenities, lighting, restrooms, paving, turf, parking and landscape and the creation of a trail path, is not in the upcoming budget. He advised council members that if they wished to move up the project, that a decision needed to be made fairly soon.
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CLEARWATER - Clearwater Ferry Services has announced new stops along several locations in Clearwater. The new stops include the following:

- North Beach - Employees and patrons of the north end of Clearwater Beach can now be picked up or dropped off just behind the recreation center.

- Island Estates - The ferry will stop in Island Estates at Slip No. 34 behind the Clearwater Marine Aquarium at various times of the day. Residents of Island Estates will be able to avoid traffic completely when going to downtown Clearwater, Caladesi Island and soon, Dunedin. In addition, anyone wishing to go to CMA can board the ferry at any location for a quick ride to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.
 ... Read More 
Rx Return Box Service announces CADCA membership
CLEARWATER - RxReturn Box Service, a division of Red Bag Service, recently announced its membership and attendance at the week-long Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America conference in Indianapolis, Indiana.

RxReturn Box Service was developed as a new concept in the safe collection (through a DEA-approved public receptacle) and disposal of excess or unused pharmaceutical materials. The service supports community conservation efforts and provides a solution for agencies with goals to control the distribution of potentially harmful substances.

The National Prescription Take-Back Program was coordinated by the DEA and was developed in accordance with the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act, which became effective October 2014. The program addresses vital public safety and health issues associated with incorrect disposal of unused pharmaceuticals. Studies indicate that many abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends and the home medicine cabinet. The program informs Americans of authorized collection site locations. For a current listing of authorized collection sites, visit and click on to Grants and drop down to Rx Drop Box.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - Fall classes for 2015-16 are coming to the Marcia P. Hoffman School of the Arts at Ruth Eckerd Hall, 1111 McMullen Booth Road.

Classes are available for adults, teens and children ages 6 and older. Classes start in September. Enrollment has begun.

The fall semester is 12 weeks and includes classes such as Percussion Ensemble, School of Rock, Stage Combat 1 (Unarmed), Acting in Musical Theater and On-Camera Acting. Drama, dance, jazz and choir classes also begin in September and will run for 24 weeks with a short break over the winter holidays. All of the classes offer opportunities to discover and grow student talents, explore new interests and experience the performing arts.
 ... Read More 
Thursday, August 20
CLEARWATER - Clearwater City Council members met on Aug. 17 in a special meeting to discuss upcoming budget issues. Among the items discussed were the addition of a number of full-time employees and future capital projects.

Several department heads went before the board to discuss their needs and to request the additional staffing.

Clearwater Library System director Barbara Pickell went before the board to request the addition of seven full-time employees, which would allow Countryside Library to return to being open seven days a week, whereas it is now closed on Sundays. Five of the positions would be located at the Clearwater Main Library branch, with the remaining two at Countryside.
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CLEARWATER - To prepare for the move to the new library location, the last day the old Countryside Library will be open to the public is Saturday, Aug. 22. The grand opening for the new Countryside Library location will be held Saturday, Oct. 17, at 10 a.m.

Throughout the time that the Countryside Library will be closed, all holds intended for Countryside Library will be sent to the Clearwater Main Library, unless arrangements are made ahead of time. All items must be returned to other library locations, as the bookdrops at the old Countryside Library will be locked. Please use other Clearwater Library branch locations while the Countryside location is closed:

The new library will be located within the Countryside Community Park at 2642 Sabal Springs Drive, next to the Countryside Recreation Center. The new building will be about 22,500 square feet, an increase of about 6,500 square feet. There will be a separate children and teen area, including a dedicated youth craft and program room, additional computers, group study spaces and a drive-up window for picking up materials.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - The city of Clearwater Planning and Development Department will host three public meetings at the North Greenwood Recreation Center, 900 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., designed to help develop the North Marina Area Master Plan.

The first meeting is on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Refreshments will be provided. The second meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. will be a planning and design charrette or public workshop. Heavy appetizers will be provided. The final meeting is on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Refreshments will be provided.

Clearwater staff will be assisted at the meetings by Stantec, a Tampa consulting firm hired by the city to help facilitate the meetings and develop the North Marina Area Master Plan.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - The city of Clearwater is seeking 10 members for a new Program for Public Information committee. The purpose of the committee is to develop a city outreach program for FEMA’s Community Rating System.

This program involves educating residents about the city’s flood risk, warning and management. It also can provide discounts to residents on their flood insurance.

Desired members of the committee should be Clearwater residents who are real estate, insurance, mortgage, environmental, and academia professionals, along with city staff. The required commitment is meeting once a month (or less) for one year. Meetings will be conducted during business hours.
 ... Read More 
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Community Calender
• Sunday, Aug. 30, 2015
Grupo Logos from Brazil
PINELLAS PARK – Praise and worship with Grupo Logos from Brazil will take place Saturday, Aug. 29, 7 p.m.; and Sunday, Aug. 30, 10:45 a.m. and 7 p.m., at Grace Bible Fellowship, 10999 60th St. N.

Admission is free, but a free-will offering will be collected. Call 545-2219.

This will be an experience of praise and worship for the American, Brazilian and Hispanic communities of Tampa Bay. The Saturday concert will be presented in Portuguese. The Sunday morning presentation will be in Portuguese with PowerPoint lyrics. The Sunday evening event will be in Spanish.
 ... Read More 
Model Studio fashion show casting
SEMINOLE – The Model Studio will be hosting a casting on Sunday, Aug. 30, 2 p.m., at 7777 131st St. N., Suite 7. The casting will be for the Macys, Express, Gap and Gap Kids fashion show. All ages are sought and no experience is needed. For an appointment, call 392-4005.
 ... Read More 
United Ostomy support group
ST. PETERSBURG – The United Ostomy Associations of America affiliated support group of St. Petersburg will meet on Sunday, Aug. 30, 2 p.m., in the auditorium at St. Anthony’s Hospital, 1200 Seventh Ave. N.

All ostomates, new or experienced, are invited to attend. This month, the meeting will feature a roundtable discussion. Attendees will have an opportunity to learn to live with their specific type of ostomy and can discuss challenges they may be having.

For information, call Bill Schmidt at 657-0998, Letty Giraud at 522-3637 or Millie Parker 687-7584.  
 ... Read More 
• Monday, Aug. 31, 2015
Beef ‘O’Brady’s Trivia Night
SEMINOLE – Beef‘O’Brady’s, 1-799 Park Blvd. N., now offers Trivia Night every Monday, 6 to 8 p.m. The winning team receives a $50 gift certificate. There will be a $5.49 burger with fries special every Monday night. To register a team, call Angel or Mike at 393-2880.
 ... Read More 
Craft classes at Bay Vista
ST. PETERSBURG – Bay Vista Recreation Center, 7000 Fourth St. S., offers craft classes Mondays from 1 to 3 p.m. They include paper crafts, polymer clay sculpting, felting and more The cost is $30 for four classes, plus a craft fee. For more information call 893-7124 or visit
 ... Read More 
Senior Singles Friendship Club meeting
PINELLAS PARK – The Senior Singles Friendship Club meets every Monday at 4:30 p.m. for dinner at a local restaurant.

Newcomers welcome.

For more information, email Estella at
 ... Read More 
Wing Madness
LARGO – Sons of the American Legion Post 119 sponsor Wing Madness every Monday, 5 to 8 p.m., at American Legion Post 119, at 130 First Ave. SW. in Largo.

Enjoy chicken wings served hot, mild, BBQ, butter and garlic and spicy BBQ for $4 for six or $7 for 12. French fries and onion rings are available. Bob Swenson donates music from 6 to 8 p.m.

Proceeds benefit All Children’s Hospital, Fisher House and the National Child Welfare Foundation.
 ... Read More 
• Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015
Military Order of the World Wars meeting
CLEARWATER – The Clearwater Chapter of the Military Order of the World Wars meets for lunch on the first Tuesday of each month at the Belleair Country Club, 1 Country Club Lane.

Social hour starts at 11:30 a.m., followed by lunch and a short program.

Military officers who are retired or are on active duty or former officers and their spouses or widows are invited to attend. The MOWW also welcomes new members.

To make reservations or to inquire about becoming a member, call George Smith at 786-5578.
 ... Read More 
Aquatic fitness classes
ST. PETE BEACH – The St. Pete Beach Recreation Department is again offering aquatic fitness classes on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, June 10 to Sept. 22, from 10:15 to 11:15 a.m. at the St. Pete Beach Aquatic Center, 7701 Boca Ciega Drive.

The cost is $5 for St. Pete Beach residents and $6 for nonresidents. Silver Sneakers members are welcome. Aquatic fitness provides muscle toning and a cardio workout with the benefits and support of the water.
 ... Read More 
Book of Mormon study class
LARGO – A Book of Mormon study class is offered Tuesdays, 7 p.m., at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 9001 106th Ave. N.

The church invites people of all ages to its free Book of Mormon Study class. The sessions will feature light refreshments along with discussions and any questions pertaining to the Book of Mormon. The group will discuss a chapter each week.

For information, call 813-362-9894.
 ... Read More 
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