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Clearwater Beacon
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Photo by ALEXANDRA LUNDAHL
The Mischievous Elves tree, designed by Natalie Mayles, Angie O’Brien, Pat Wooten, Shannon Ware, Kiely Allen, Cheryl Franzese, and MJ Campbell, is filled with humor and color. The tree was one of many at the annual Festival of trees, Nov. 21-23, at the Long Center in Clearwater. Proceeds benefitted the UPARC Foundation.
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CLEARWATER - “There will be no holiday lights on Sand Key this year.” That was the lead sentence in a statement released recently by the president of the Sand Key Civic Association. Arlene Musselwhite said the lights have become too expensive with not enough residents sharing in the cost.

Musselwhite said that the Civic Association has paid for the lights, which have been installed on the poles along Gulf Boulevard in the residential section of Sand Key for years. The trouble is not all the residents of Sand Key are members of the association and the cost of installing the lights continues to rise.
 ... Read More 
CLEARWATER - The Homeless Emergency Project and Religious Community Services have many things in common.

They’re both nonprofit organizations that help the homeless, they have both received funding from the city of Clearwater and, at the Nov. 20 Clearwater City Council meeting, they both requested that the city double its contribution to them this year.

That’s where the similarity ended. The council heaped praise on the HEP and by a 4-0 vote, doubled its contribution, from $50,000 to $100,000. But a request to double the city’s contribution to RCS, from $25,000 to $50,000, never got to a vote because Councilmember Jay Polglaze was absent and none of the other councilmembers would second the motion.
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CLEARWATER - The Clearwater City Council on Nov. 20 agreed to grant the request of Linda Varonich, chairperson of the city’s Environmental Advisory Board, to write a letter to the federal Environmental Protection Agency, supporting the EPA’s efforts to issue new carbon emission standards for existing power plants that would reduce carbon emissions.

Mayor George Cretekos said that he could not in good conscience sign the letter as Varonich had originally drafted it, so he revised it. After hearing from Varonich and C.I. Townsend, an environmental activist from Plant City, the council unanimously voted to sign the revised letter and send it to the EPA.

City’s liability limited in injured ankle case
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CLEARWATER - The Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce seeks nominations for the next Mr. and/or Ms. Clearwater. The annual award has been given out since 1958 to honor an individual or couple whose contribution of time and talent over the years have made the greater Clearwater community a better place to live and work.

The general criteria for nominees is as follows:

- Must be a resident of the greater Clearwater area.
 ... Read More 
Monday, November 24
CLEARWATER - Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a 22-year-old man on Nov. 21 in connection to a carjacking, according to a Clearwater police report.

Oren Wickberg Jr. of Clearwater is being held in the Hillsborough County Jail. According to the report, around 7 a.m. on Nov. 21, a 52-year-old man was preparing to leave his house in the 2300 block of Willow Tree Trail in Clearwater. The victim started his 2007 Dodge Ram pickup and then went to retrieve his newspaper from the driveway. That’s when Wickberg allegedly jumped into the truck, and he and the victim then struggled over control of the vehicle. The suspect put the truck in reverse and drove recklessly, causing the victim to be thrown from the vehicle.

Wickberg was last seen driving east from Clearwater toward Tampa. Clearwater police alerted nearby jurisdictions of the carjacking, and about 3.5 hours later, the truck was involved in a crash near U.S. 41 and Bullfrog Creek in Gibsonton. The suspect was then taken into custody. He has been charged with carjacking, grand theft of a motor vehicle, burglary of an unoccupied conveyance and leaving the scene of an accident. He has numerous prior arrests in Pinellas County, police say.
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CLEARWATER - A 35-year-old Clearwater man died Monday morning after the motorcycle he was riding collided with a another vehicle and crashed on Ulmerton Road.

According to the report from Florida Highway Patrol, Robert Gayle Lowe IV died at the scene of the crash that occurred about 3:45 a.m. Nov. 24.

Troopers said that Lowe was traveling at a high rate of speed westbound in the outside lane of Ulmerton Road as he approached Coral Way. Robert Jeffery Heavilin, 40, of New Port Richey was driving a construction truck westbound in the outside lane of Ulmerton Road. Heavilin was driving ahead of Lowe at a slower speed. Casey James Whitlock, 28, of Pinellas Park was traveling westbound in the inside lane of Ulmerton Road adjacent to the construction truck.
 ... Read More 
Friday, November 21
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CLEARWATER - No injuries were reported in a shooting in unincorporated Clearwater Friday afternoon, according to a report from Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies responded to 1731 South Washington Ave. about 1:48 p.m. Nov. 21 where Christina Nelson, 25, and two unidentified suspects had a confrontation with two victims over money.

Deputies said Nelson was overheard telling the other two to shoot at the victims. One of the two did shoot at the victims before all three fled the area. No one was injured.
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Thursday, November 20
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CLEARWATER - Clearwater Fire and Rescue put a new fire engine into service on Nov. 14 at Station 47 at 1460 Lakeview Road. The engine cost $53,000 and was purchased from Pierce Manufacturing in Wisconsin.

The engine replaces a 1999 engine that had 109,800 miles on it and averaged about 1,600 calls annually. It will be staffed with three firefighters around the clock.

“We are grateful to the mayor and city council for approving the purchase of this new engine,” said fire Chief Robert Weiss. “It will help us to continue to provide excellent emergency fire service to the citizens of Clearwater.”
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CLEARWATER - At its Nov. 20 meeting, the Clearwater City Council is expected to unanimously approve changes to three current sections of its policies and add a new section.

“These are changes that were discussed by the council at previous sessions,” City Clerk Rosemarie Call reminded the councilmembers at their Nov. 17 work session.

The first change added Skye Lane Properties, LLC to the list of entities for which permit, application, inspection and other fees have been waived via the council’s Resolution 14-03.
 ... Read More 
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Community Calender
• Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014
Indian Rocks Beach Library story time
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH – Story time resumes again at the Indian Rocks Beach Library. The program will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursdays. Children of all ages are invited.
Kiwanis Club of Seminole meeting
SEMINOLE – The Kiwanis Club of Seminole meets Thursdays, 6:15 p.m., at Freedom Square’s Town Hall. The group’s next speaker will be Breanne Zsiga, from Career Academies of Seminole, discussing on her steer project. For more information, call Terry Carr at 394-2582.
 ... Read More 
Thanksgiving dinner
TREASURE ISLAND – A free Thanksgiving dinner will be served Thursday, Nov. 27, 12:30 p.m., at Paradise Lutheran Church, 10255 Paradise Blvd.

Reservations are required and space is limited. Call 360-5739.

Dinner will feature turkey with all the trimmings as well as side dishes and desserts.

There will be no worship service on Thanksgiving Day. The church’s traditional Thanksgiving service will be presented Wednesday, Nov. 26, at noon.
 ... Read More 
Treasure Islettes bingo games
TREASURE ISLAND – The Treasure Islettes conduct bingo games every Thursday evening at the Treasure Island Community Center on 106th Avenue.

Early bird games begin at 6:45 p.m. and regular games at 7:45 p.m. The games benefit fundraising efforts for local scholarships.

Amenities include a snack bar, free coffee and cash prizes. No alcohol is allowed and persons under 18 will not be admitted.
 ... Read More 
• Friday, Nov. 28, 2014
Ceilidhs, traditional Gaelic social gatherings
Ceilidhs, traditional Gaelic social gatherings, are held every Friday night from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Scottish American Society of Dunedin, 917 Louden Ave.

The cost is $3 and $5 for nonmembers. The social club is dedicated to the preservation of Scottish culture, offering Scottish country dancing, line dancing, holiday dinners and parties.

Call 734-0757  
 ... Read More 
Charity gift-wrap fundraiser
CLEARWATER – A free charity gift-wrap fundraiser will be held Friday, Nov. 28, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., at the Light of Christ Catholic Church, 2176 Marilyn St.

Donations will benefit the Light of Christ life teen/edge programs and the Gracie G. Purdy Foundation Inc.  

For additional information on how to donate to or assist the event, call Michael Baralt at 742-2691.
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Connections @ Park Station
PINELLAS PARK – The Pinellas Park/Gateway Chamber of Commerce hosts Connections @ Park Station, 5851 Park Blvd., Room 101, a free networking event, on the second and fourth Fridays of the month at 8:30 a.m. Contact Carl Lucchi at 458-7863 for more information.
 ... Read More 
Holiday Lights in the Gardens
LARGO – The 14th annual Holiday Lights in the Gardens event will be run Nov. 28 through Dec. 31 at the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo. Parking is available at either 12520 Ulmerton Road or 12211 Walsingham Road.

The gardens are magically transformed into a star-studded venue of more than 750,000 twinkly LED lights daily from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.

A stroll through the shining gardens has become a tradition for visitors from both near and far as they are wowed by colorful lasers, animated figures and entertainers at this festive celebration of the holiday season.

A donation of $4 is requested for visitors 13 and older. Children 12 and younger are free. For information, call 582-2147 or visit www.flbg.org.
 ... Read More 
Scottish American Society social gatherings
Ceilidhs, traditional Gaelic social gatherings, are held every Friday night from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Scottish American Society of Dunedin, 917 Louden Ave., Dunedin.  

The cost is $5 for nonmembers. The social club is dedicated to the preservation of Scottish culture, offering Scottish country dancing, line dancing, holiday dinners and parties.   

Call 734 0757.
 ... Read More 
Sunset Market
LARGO – Sunset Market is open every Friday through May, 3 to 7 p.m., in Largo Central Park’s parking lot No. 1, at southwest corner of East Bay and Central Park drives.

Vendors will offer vegetables, fruits, raw local honey, herbal teas and wild-caught seafood as well as organic body products, essential oils, arts and crafts. The focus will be on produce and organic products with about 40 percent of the market dedicated to art and craft vendors.

The market offers several ways for commercial business to advertise as well as two free spaces per market reserved for nonprofit entities.

For more information, contact Jennifer McCafferty at 813-846-1316 or jennifer@jens-market.com.
 ... Read More 
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Tampa Bay Newspapers
9911 Seminole Blvd.,
Seminole, FL 33772
Phone: (727) 397-5563
Fax: (727) 397-5900
Submit News