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The abrupt halt to the 2020 spring training season in mid-March because of the coronavirus pandemic dealt a huge economic blow to Pinellas County, where the Toronto Blue Jays play in newly refurbished TD Ballpark in Dunedin and the Philadelphia Phillies have trained in Clearwater for more th…

EAST LAKE — On a recent mid-June morning, small groups of prospective East Lake High School football players gathered at the Eagles’ field, but there were no group huddles to be seen, no cracking of pads or clanging of weights to be heard and not a football in sight.

The coronavirus pandemic means Belleair will have to wait a little longer for its moment in the sun. In an announcement that came to no one’s surprise, the LPGA said April 3 that the Pelican Women's Championship that was scheduled to take place in May has been rescheduled to Nov. 9-15.

The coronavirus pandemic brought a halt to the sports world March 12-13, as organizations one by one began postponing and canceling events and entire seasons across the country, including the NBA season and NCAA basketball tournament.  

ST. PETERSBURG — The future of this year's annual Grand Prix in St. Petersburg is in the air as cities, states and the nation struggle to contain the spread of COVID-19.

There’s little doubt the Toronto Blue Jays will field an exciting team this year, thanks to plenty of young superstars. But as the team entered the 2020 Grapefruit League home opener against the Braves on Feb. 24, all eyes were on the field itself — or rather, the new ballpark surrounding it.

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» Phillies open spring training in Clearwater with some new faces on field, features at stadium

Turf is being watered, landscaping is being installed, and wiring is snaking into place as the $102 million overhaul of what is now TD Ballpark and the team’s nearby Player Development Center inches toward completion.

Jack Nicklaus visited Clearwater recently to help rededicate the Nicklaus Family Center at pal Chi Chi Rodriguez’s Golf Academy, a school born of a unique public-private partnership that utilizes golf to teach life lessons.

SEMINOLE — As the Seminole High School Warhawks soccer program gears up for its 2019-2020 season, the program will host a fundraiser at Mickey Quinn’s Pub, 13071 Park Blvd. N., Friday, Nov. 22.

After years of planning, the Wounded Warriors Abilities Ranch in Pinellas Park is poised to enter its final phase of construction next year. The WWAR is designed to help rehabilitate veterans wounded during military service.

Local fans of the Toronto Blue Jays and visitors from Canada have a lot to look forward to this spring. The team will be playing in a stadium and training facility that have been renovated to the tune of $102 million, a project that has the team’s director of Florida operations “extremely excited” about the team’s future here.

Mother Nature may not be ready to cooperate, but football is back whether she likes it or not. Annual Fall Classic preseason high school games had a tough time getting completed last Friday night. Some were able to push through the dreary, wet weather while others were suspended or outright canceled. But that was then and this is now. Week 1 is here and these games count.

CLEARWATER — Of the 43,316 attendees to Phillies spring training games this spring, 16,946 stayed at a hotel or condo. That’s not counting the players and team staff, 183 of whom stayed overnight in hotels, usually for lengthy stays.

BELLEAIR — A world-class sporting event is about to come to Belleair. The LPGA has announced that in 2020 a new tournament will be added to the tour and will be held at the newly refurbished Pelican Golf Club.

EAST LAKE — Former LPGA star Jan Stephenson, who now owns a golf course in Palm Harbor, was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame during a ceremony in California that took place during the week of the 119th U.S. Open, at the famed Pebble Beach Golf Links.

Before he could even walk, Logan Hofstetter was in the water.

The Largo native grew up just a short drive from Indian Rocks Beach, where his family, avid beachgoers, spent much of their time.

His father and uncle, professional triathletes, were both surfers as well. So Logan’s natural affinity for the water is in his blood, he said.

It’s been a phenomenal few weeks for the Calvary Christian baseball program. The Warriors captured their second state championship in three years May 25, and this past week two of the team's senior stars — shortstop Christian Cairo, son of 17-year MLB veteran Miguel, and pitcher Braden Halladay, son of the late MLB star Roy Halladay — were selected in the Major League Baseball Draft. 

In the ninja world, Jason and Kathy Bergstrom and their family – nine kids, five of them adopted – are known as the Bergstrom Bunch. The Seminole family operates the Jungle Gym, an obstacle-based facility in Pinellas Park, but three members of the family have taken their passion for competition to another level, excelling on the NBC show "American Ninja Warrior."

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