OLDSMAR - During a private ceremony held at the Nielsen Media Research headquarters on Friday, Sept. 29, retiring Oldsmar City Manager Bruce Haddock made a remark about his farewell lasting longer than his tenure.
And while it’s true the last few months of Haddock’s illustrious career in local government, which began in 1974 before he moved to his current position in 1986, have featured accolades and well-wishes befitting a sports legend, the length of Haddock’s tenure demanded a proper send off.
PALM HARBOR - Former Mayor Frank Nabozny and current Mayor Kim Adams are vying for the honorary mayor position, a race hosted by the Greater Palm Harbor Chamber of Commerce.
Because Palm Harbor is an unincorporated area and not a city, it does not have a real mayor.
Instead of remaining a mayor-less city, in 1982 the chamber began to host a charity race to honorarily fill the position.
Candidates for mayor must be adult humans in “good standing” with the Palm Harbor Chamber. Once a candidate submits their name for the 2017-2018 term to Chamber President and CEO Skip Alford, they can start raising money to win the honor.
OLDSMAR - A local developer hoping to build a 50-unit town home community on St. Petersburg Drive in downtown Oldsmar had his plans halted recently after the City Council elected to postpone a vote on a purchase and sale agreement for the land in the amount of $877,000.
The move came as a surprise to many after officials had approved a zoning change for the nearly four-acre parcel in July, apparently paving the way for Oldsmar Towns, LLC. to construct the development next to the Oldsmar Public Library.
But when the new agenda item was addressed on September 19, two council members expressed reservations about the deal for two very different reasons; Council member Jerry Beverland refused to vote on a sale agreement without seeing a site plan first, while fellow local lawmaker Eric Seidel questioned whether the City was getting the proper value for the property.
PALM HARBOR - During major storms, there are a lot of stories of devastation, but in the Palm Harbor, Oldsmar and East Lake areas, residents are making sure they are doing their best to bring a little light to a dreary situation.
Throughout these communities, there have been many stories of neighbors helping neighbors, and community members reaching out to their friends in the wake of the storm.
Jennifer Davis reached out to Tampa Bay Newspapers and shared the story of a couple in Palm Harbor who went out of their way to help their friends, community and pets.
PALM HARBOR - In the wake of negative news surrounding elder care facilities after Hurricane Irma, Arden Courts Memory Care shows that some facilities had success in caring for their residents.
“I went to bed crying last night,” said Marketing Director of the Palm Harbor branch of Arden Courts, located at 2895 Tampa Road, Maryanne Fisher. “It’s heartbreaking.”
Fisher was referring to some of the recent stories surrounding assisted living and elder care facilities throughout the state, particularly the death of eight patients at a rehabilitation center in Hollywood, Florida.
OLDSMAR - Earth Fare Oldsmar is hosting a job fair Sept. 20-22, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., at the Hampton Inn at 4170 Tampa Road.
The event originally scheduled for Sept. 13-15 was postponed due to Hurricane Irma.
Officials for the North Carolina based organic grocery chain said the job fair will help place new team members in both full time and part time positions spanning all disciplines. The new store is expected to create nearly 150 new jobs when it opens in the remodeled Woodlands Square shopping plaza this fall.
OLDSMAR - The Oldsmar City Council agreed to allow the city attorney to draw up a development agreement with a local builder that wants to construct a 52-unit townhome community on a parcel of land next to the Oldsmar Public Library.
But the decision wasn’t unanimous, as the council members were divided over a term of the proposed agreement calling for the construction of a street that would bisect the new development, creating a cut-through street between Arlington Avenue and St. Petersburg Drive.
OLDSMAR - The city of Oldsmar is hosting a Traveling Tree Walk program now through the month of October. The program, being run by the Leisure Services Department in conjunction with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, will target eight different species in four locations: R.E. Olds Park, Veterans Memorial Park, Sheffield Park and the library.
According to Leisure Services Director Felicia Donnelly, the purpose of the program is to illustrate the monetary and ecological value the trees provide to the city and its residents.
East Lake Fire Rescue’s Fire Chief Tom Jamison was recognized by the Florida Association of Special Districts as the District Manager of the Year for 2017.
East Lake Fire Rescue is a special fire control district.
Special Districts are mission critical, local community units that address specific community needs and provide and maintain single focused infrastructure and services, such as water and road management, fire rescue and safety, healthcare services, and community development. The Florida Association of Special Districts (FASD) is an organization that serves to unify and strengthen special purpose government through education, and to serve as the collective voice of special purpose government. Chief Jamison has been with East Lake Fire Rescue for over 22 years, and has served as the Fire Chief/District Manager for the past six years. East Lake Fire Rescue provides 33,000 citizens in 33 square miles of northeastern Pinellas County with Fire protection, Emergency Medical Services, Fire prevention, and other community risk reduction services and education.
PALM HARBOR - The Palm Harbor Women’s Connection has announced two fall events in October and November at East Lake Woodlands Country Club, 1055 East Lake Woodlands Parkway, in Oldsmar.
On Oct. 10, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., the connection will host “Pretty in Pink.” The event is all about honoring, supporting and encouraging people affected by breast cancer. The luncheon will feature Barbara Hennessy, from “The Joy Within,” who will share her “Laughter Technique” with those in attendance.
The keynote speaker will be breast cancer survivor Melanie Spadafora from Vero Beach, who will share her story of “Life Interrupted,” a story about how life choices do not turn out the way they do in the movies.
PALM HARBOR - Hip Hop artist and Palm Harbor University High School grad Johnathan Conforti is bringing together the Tampa Bay area’s most talented local artists for a show at de Bine Brewing Company, 993 Florida Ave. on Aug. 24.
Conforti, known as the hip-hop artist Young 40, holds an event every quarter of the year. The last event was in June. However, the events were usually held in Tampa or Ybor City. Many of his artists weren’t able to come out and make the drive.
A 2011 PHUHS graduate, Conforti decided to bring the event home.
OLDSMAR - The city of Oldsmar’s new Volunteer Program has started to pay dividends, as collaborations with local companies looking to provide volunteer manpower has already saved the city thousands of dollars in offset labor costs.
“We just started a formalized City volunteer program for individuals, groups or corporations, and last month, we had 270 volunteer hours and calculated we saved $6,200 in offset labor costs,” Leisure Services Director Felicia Donnelly, who started the program two months ago, said.
PALM HARBOR - Community Service Association, or better known as CSA Palm Harbor, broke ground on a new field area at 2 p.m. on Aug. 4.
Board members from the Palm Harbor Community Service Association, PHCSA; directors from local libraries and the YMCA, Pat Gerard from the Pinellas County Commission and other local dignitaries attended the small event on the hot August day in an open field area behind the existing CSA Palm Harbor building at 1500 16th St.
The new multi-purpose grass field space will be the first new recreation space in the city in years.
OLDSMAR - City of Oldsmar officials decided to stay in-house when selecting a successor for retiring City Manager Bruce Haddock, choosing current Director of Administrative Services Al Braithwaite from a pool of more than 80 candidates.
The news came during a work session that was supposed to see the City Council whittle the final candidate list from 10 to two or three, with Haddock’s successor expected to be chosen sometime in late August.
However, once they started reviewing the information gathered by a national consulting firm, officials knew they didn’t have to look very far to replace Haddock, who will step down from a position he has held for more than 30 years on Oct. 1.
OLDSMAR - The Oldsmar City Council recently authorized City Manager Bruce Haddock to negotiate a development agreement for a proposed 52-unit town home complex that would be built on a vacant parcel of City-owned land next to the Oldsmar Public Library.
The details of the agreement call for the sale of 3.79 acres of the 7-acre parcel to the Eastern Meridian Group for $877,182, with several requirements of the developer, including buying into the City’s storm water system, using architecture consistent with code requirements and constructing a street that would run through the development, connecting St. Petersburg Drive with Arlington Avenue.
OLDSMAR - Officials for North Carolina based organic grocery chain Earth Fare recently announced a fall 2017 grand opening for its new location at Woodlands Square Plaza in Oldsmar.
The 24,000-square-foot store will be located adjacent to Bealls on the eastern side of the Tampa Road shopping center and will serve as one of the anchor tenants of the plaza, which is currently undergoing extensive renovations.
“We are thrilled to have Earth Fare as one of the centerpiece tenants in this redevelopment,” Brian Maloney, managing director of retail for property developer RAM Realty, said in a press release announcing the news.
PALM HARBOR - Keenan Knopke, president and CEO of Curlew Hills Memory Gardens, recently received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Florida Cemetery, Cremation & Funeral Association.
This prestigious award is presented to an individual in recognition of their significant and sustained contributions to the death care industry.
Knopke began his 45-year career in the death care industry as a funeral director in the family business, Garden of Memories in Tampa. Born and raised in Tampa, Keenan has worked in the death care industry throughout the state of Florida. He became President of Curlew Hills in 2003 and has since received many awards for his contributions to the industry and the local community.