Saturday, October 29, 2005


I read this story in the Weekly Planet. I have added photos of people who were arrested for solication for prostitution at the same time as the persons mentioned in each episode.

Article published Oct 26, 2005

The Blotter

By Joe Bardi

The Sting: On the night of Sept. 23, a female officer from the Tampa police department was assigned to the area of Nebraska Avenue and Clifton Street in an effort to "combat prostitution." Wearing "a pink tank-top, jean shorts and pink/white flip-flops," the officer was in for a busy evening. Here's a sample:

7:52 P.M.: The officer was approached by a man in a "Toyota two-door vehicle," who rolled down his window and "immediately stated, 'What's your price?'" "What?" the officer replied, to which the man responded, "I only have $10." She asked what he wanted, he stated, "A blow," and she gave the signal to have him arrested. Very simple.

Was this?

DOB: 11/03/66

8:08 P.M.: Shortly after 8 o'clock, the officer's evening took a turn toward the icky. She was summoned to the window of a pick-up truck driven by a horny white male. The officer asked what he was looking for, to which the man stated, "I want to get inside you." The officer asked, "You mean sex?" Per the report, "he stated, 'Yeah,' and he smiled while he rubbed his penis through his pants." Unfortunately for the suspect, all hopes of getting off now rest with his lawyer.

Was this?


8:13 P.M.: Two guys in "a red 4-door vehicle" whistled at the officer. The officer walked past them and continued up Nebraska Avenue because, as she states in the report, "I was attempting to walk to one of our undercover vehicles, as I had just made a case on an unrelated defendant." The guys followed her, pulled into a nearby parking lot and one of them again attempted to signal the officer, this time by waving and yelling. The officer told the men to go away, as "the police were right up the street," and walked away again. Absurdly unable to take a hint, the men in the pickup circled around and stopped the officer again, now in the parking lot of a hotel. The third time was the charm: The officer went through the usual haggling, gave the signal and had the men taken into custody.

Was this?

DOB: 02/24/50
Address: 3011 ORIENT RD
Arrested at 20:13


DOB: 02/01/77
Address: 3011 ORIENT RD
Arrested at 20:13

8:40 P.M.: A nervous man in a red car pulled up and offered $20 for sex. He was quickly arrested. (He should have paid more attention to those nerves.)
Was this?

3132 LAMBRIGHT ST W 1002
Arrested at 20:40 Hours

9:00 P.M.: A man in a black four-door vehicle pulled up and offered $20 for sex. This man, too, was arrested.9:49 P.M.: Finally, an excited gentleman called the officer to his car, stating he had $20 before she could get to the window. Asked what he wanted, "He emphatically stated, 'Sex!'" Not tonight, sir.
Was this?

DOB: 07/28/85
Address: 6210 SHELDON RD #2315 TAMPA
Employed By:ENILROY
Arrested at: 21:00 Hours

From the files of the T.P.D.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Artists in Seminole Heights

There are a lot of artists in Seminole Heights or so I have been told. I'd like to document that. I will be placing links to artists websites along with the business links that I already list. For those artists who do not have websites of their own I offer the following. If an artists work is featured on other website(s), send me the link(s) and I will mention that artist and those links in my blog column. If you do not have your work displayed on any website, send me a couple of images and a brief blurb about your work and contact info and I will feature it on my blog.

I've already featured Jimmy Steel and Susan Banghart. wrote a story about Seminole Heights and Central Tampa artists in 2002 providing many names. However it is not clear to me who is a Seminole Heights artist and who is not, and who has web pages. So I need your help. If you ae an artist or know an artist, send me the info.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Food Deliveries to Hurricane Areas

A coworker has some friends in Hollywood, Fl affected by Hurricane Wilma, that she wants to send some food to. Anyone know how that can be done?

District Two Neighborhood Watch and Civic Associations Training Session

The District Two Staff Invites District Two
Neighborhood Watch and Civic Associations
for a Training Session

Location: Comfort Inn 820 E. Busch Blvd
Date: 10-27-05
Time: 6:30 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.

The topics to be discussed are:

TPD Dispatch and Specialty Squads
Sexual Predators
Detective Division
Personal Safety

Leaders, Please Invite your Neighbors!!!

This will also be a wonderful time to get to know the other Neighborhood Watch and Civic Association
members in District Two!

RSVP to CPP Lisa Timmer via email at or telephone: 931-6541

Special thanks goes to the Comfort Inn for providing the venue, and also to Krispy Kreme located at 8425 North Florida Ave for providing the Coffee and Donuts!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Upcoming Events

1. Feast of The Dark

Host: Peggy Chiasson
Location: Gaspar's Grotto
1805 7th Ave., Ybor, FL
When: Friday, October 28, 7:00pm
Halloween Fundraiser Party for Operation Shoebox, a care package program for our troops. Help us provide a Feast for our Troops who are deployed overseas. Live Music by "Under Construction", Belly Dancers, Fortune Teller, and great games! Costume Contest & Prizes !!! Everyone is invited !!!
Cost: $10 per person OR $5 per person with donation of items

As we start to prepare for the holidays, it is important for us to remember there will be an empty seat at many tables throughout our country. Please help us celebrate this Thanksgiving by donating these items to our troops who can't be with us:

Canned Turkey
Instant Mashed Potatoes
Stove Top Stuffing
Gravy Mixes
Canned Vegetables
Canned Fruits
Cranberry Sauce
Macaroni & Cheese or Easy Mac
Oreos (Most Popular Request)
Canned Egg Nog

Each package contains fixings for entire platoon, including Thanksgiving tablecloth, plates, napkins, cups, & centerpeice.
Donations to cover postage is also greatly needed. The cost of mailing this dinner for a platoon of 45 is approximately $500.
Your generosity can make all the difference.
For more info, please call (813) 781-6231 or visit our website at:

Operation Shoebox is based in Seminole Heights

2. November 2nd party for Rose Ferlita

Hosts: Allison Beard, Andy Graham, Noel McDonell, Kelli Mitchell, Jay Singletary, Joe Stagi, Curtis Stokes, Marty Traber, Greg Truax, Dan Whitaker and Ken Walters

Please join us to meet

Rose Ferlita

Candidate for Hillsborough County Commission, District 1

Wednesday, November 2, 2005

5 until 7 p.m.

Jackson’s Riverfront Room

(upstairs from the restaurant)

601 South Harbour Island Boulevard

Tampa, Florida 33602

Cash bar

Feel free to bring a friend

Contributions gladly accepted

$500 is the maximum campaign contributions that can be made by a person or entity. This is a paid political advertisement and it is approved by Rose Ferlita, Republican. Contributions to the Rose Ferlita Campaign are not deductible as charitable contributions for Federal income tax purposes.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

(soon-to-be-named) business association of Seminole Heights meeting announcement

Please let any business owners or artists know about the upcoming meeting.

Dear Business Owners & Artists of Seminole Heights:

Plan to join your fellow Seminole Heights business owners and artists as
the Steering Committee of the (soon-to-be-named) Business Association
announces the progress they've made since the Membership's Inaugural
Meeting in October. You'll also learn more information on the
organization's Name, Mission Statement, Vision and proposed Committees.

PLUS – This meeting is your opportunity to provide input into how the
Association will move forward to bring the Seminole Heights community
together to enhance and showcase our area's local businesses.

--What: General Membership Meeting
of the newly-formed Seminole Heights Business Association

--When: Nov. 3, 2005 (Thursday) – 7pm

--Where: Coffee Bean Café
4715 N. Florida Ave.
Tampa, FL 33603
(813) 237-5808

For more information on the meeting, please contact
Jay McGee at (813) 333-2845 or

Suzie Cooke makes it into USA Today

Seminole Heights resident and Seminole Heights Book Club member Suzie Cooke was featured in an article today in in the Money section of USA Today.

"Susie Cooke could live to 100, and she knows it. The 58-year-old grandmother
from Tampa took early retirement from Verizon in 2001. She lives a vibrant life
— biking, hiking, yoga, aerobics. She still wears a bikini at the beach. She got
her 82-year-old mom to take up yoga and aerobics, too. . . . . "

For the rest of the story... read the article

Treasure Hunting In Your Attic

One of my neighbors sent out the following email:

Today, I was doing work in the attic and found a treasure collection of antique bottles. I brought them down, cleaned them and googled them. They are worth quite a bit of money, I have a mason jar with a zinc and porcelain lid dated November 30, 1858. I have a 1920's vinegar bottle worth $40.

Inside 2 of the mason jars were one quarter each. Dated 1917. I went on line and they were selling for over $1000. One had recently sold for $3700. Unfortuately, the quarters are not in mint condition.

Moral of the story, clean your attics

I related my treasure hunt story in a prior post. Anyone else had any good finds?

Monday, October 24, 2005

In the last couple of weeks I have not been posting as much. Partly this is because I have been working on Susan's web page for her art.

Well, it is finally completed. Come visit

Coffee Bean Cafe gets reviewed by the Tribune

Thanks to Torgo, I've learned that the Coffee Bean Cafe was reviewed by the Tampa Tribune. Yea!

Because the Trib's articles don't hand around very long, I've included the whole review.

The Coffee Bean Cafe
By Amanda Henry of The Tampa Tribune
Published: October 19, 2005

TAMPA Someday, supposedly, Starbucks is coming to spearhead the Hyde Park-ification of Seminole Heights. Until then, there is The Coffee Bean Cafe, a new breakfast and lunch spot that caters not so much to the future of the neighborhood as its present.

The Coffee Bean Cafe is the latest restaurant to try to make a go of it in the funky green strip mall at the corner of Florida and Osborne avenues, also home to several good antiques stores, a gift shop and a gym. Judging by weekend crowds in its first few months of business, The Coffee Bean may be on to something.

The menu offers breakfast and lunch, as well as coffee drinks and ice cream, with a retro comfort-food feel. That means things like biscuits and gravy, homemade corned beef hash, crustless cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches, an authentic Sloppy Joe and a variety of grilled sandwiches — including PB&J — and wraps. There also are some vegetarian options, including quite a few salads.

For an area that’s still a mix of working class and starving artists, this is probably a good niche. (Lovers of radicchio and truffle oil may want to stick to south Tampa; the menu here is more likely to trumpet its use of mayonnaise.)

Highlights of several recent visits include the homemade soups — the vegetable was rich enough to pass for beef stew — a classic Reuben, and the Wild Turkey sandwich (turkey, ham and blue cheese dressing). The Uncle Milty wrap is a heartier version of the latter, with added roast beef, bacon and avocado, though the sun-dried tomato tortilla was on the dry side. Sandwiches come with a bag of chips, but you might want to upgrade to the bacony delight of the country potato salad.

The cobb salad was simple, but clearly prepared to order, and therefore fresh and tasty — no wilted lettuce or slimy avocado. Even the tomato tasted like tomato, an increasingly rare quality in restaurant salads. The fruit salad also was prepared fresh, but is probably a better choice when there are more and better fruits in season (the mealy apples didn’t cut it).

A more palatable option was the caramel apple walnut pie, served warm with a side of vanilla ice cream. While not prepared on the the premises, it was clearly homemade somewhere, with a thick, authentic crust and none of that canned goop in the middle.

Another fun dessert is the Old Fashioned Soda, a blended mix of club soda, milk and ice cream, with whipped cream and a maraschino cherry on top. (Think milk shake, with fizz.) Among the other beverages, a plain cappuccino was excellent, but the Cafe Mocha was far too sweet. The selection of teas is extensive, and serving them in antique china cups is a nice touch.

There are some new-restaurant jitters at The Coffee Bean. When it gets busy, service can be slow, and everyone is still learning the menu — and the espresso machine. It would be nice to see some fresh pastries in the morning for those on the run, instead of individually wrapped danishes, and a few more pies or other desserts for the afternoon coffee/tea crowd. The homemade biscotti is a good start, though, and there are at least a dozen flavors of the delicious Working Cow ice cream.

Room for improvements notwithstanding, this is a nice neighborhood hangout. The interior is bright and cheerful, with an eclectic mix of antiques, and the friendly staff doesn’t mind if you linger over a hot beverage. With its reasonable prices and nostalgic cuisine, The Coffee Bean could be a keeper.

Tribune reviewers eat anonymously. Amanda Henry can be reached at (813) 259-7569.

BOTTOM LINE: Home cooking, plus coffee and ice cream, in a cozy, non-corporate setting

WHERE: 4715 N. Florida Ave., Tampa

HOURS: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday


CHILDREN’S MENU: Can accommodate



PRICE: Breakfast and lunch entrees range from $2.99 to $6.99

CALL: (813) 237-5808

Hurricane Information

So where is the best place to information about Hurricane Wilma?

At work we get SitReps emails from the from Hillsborough County Emergency Management Office. They are very good. They tell me where the hurricane is at and how it will affect us. Plus there is a bit of humor involved, with quotes from Yogi Berra. However this great information is not available on their web site. Well sort of. Today I looked again again at their website and found the September 21 SitRep in pdf format. September 21!!!!!. Frankly their website is worthless. With the blogging software available there is no reason they can't have the SitReps posted as soon as the generate them.

One thing I found from the SitReps is a great website:Skeetobite Weather This website shows the spagetti models and a very good maps of the strike area.

Of course I go to the source and check the National Hurricane Center.

The best 2 TV/news websites are WFLA/TBO.COM/Tampa Tribune Hurricane Center site and WFTS - ABC Action News. A lot of info available and easy to find.

WTVT's is pretty shallow. A couple of good images in the home page but otherwise not much depth. This is not surprising as the whole website is shallow. If you missed something on their broadcasts forget about seeing on their website.

WTSP's took too long to load on my dial-up computer.

As far as TV stations are concerned I don't have cable so I am limited as to what I can watch. The best is WFLA. They were first with the VIPIR type system. They do far more with their images/radars/computer graphics than the other stations.

What do you think?

Sunday, October 23, 2005


Historic Kenwood Park in St. Petersburg is hosting their 7th Annual Bungalowfest. If you like going to the Old Seminole Heights and SE Seminole Heights Home Tours, then you ought to consider going to the Kenwood Park home tour.

"Bungalowfest will feature 12 homes. Complimentary trolleys will run along the brick streets allowing passengers to hop on and off at their leisure, taking in the ambiance of our truly unique neighborhood. Saturday, Nov. 5, 10am to 3pm."
The Tour starts at 2900 3rd Ave. N.

A great new addition to their tour is the
"Bungalowfest by Moonlight Wine and Cheese Tour is the most exciting addition to the event this year. Five homes selected from the Tour will open their doors to guests on Friday evening. Hors d'oeuvres will be served at the homes. Our Northern friends should especially like the magic of November at twilight. True Florida charm among the oaks and marmalade street lamps. Friday, Nov. 4, 7-10 pm."

Tickets are $10 for the Bungalowfest, $15 for the Bungalowfest by Moonlight, and $20 for combo pack.

Make Up Your Mind.

(As seen at Giddens and 17th St, next to Checkers.)

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Hurricane Preparations

Iron on Resistance

Driving on Florida Avenue, Susan and I came across the following images

Iron On Resistance


These were all found at the Praise Cathedral at 5103 N. Florida Ave

Then at the old Eckerd's at MLK and Nebraska we found more images

Dirty but Sophisticated

and some different Obey images

So what's up with these?

A Google search revealed the following website "An Art Product Collective for Your Proletarian Lifestyle" - Coming in November.

There is no further explanation. However there is a link to Red Labor Red Labor is the work of artists Josh Bertrand and Dave Rau. In that website and blog is this comment:

Well, how about some tshirts, purses, ipod cases, buttons and limited
edition clothing and screen prints; maybe you’re interested you say?
Iron-On Resistance

Ansley's and Bo's

Well I drove by the former Ansley's today (Central and Sligh) and saw that there is a sold sign on it. So what's going there?

Also the for sale sign is down at Bo's IceCream. Did they sell or change their mind? There is a for lease sign at the building that is part of the complex, just north of the Ice Cream building.

Dessert and Coffee Shop update

A reader pointed this out to me in yesterday's St. Pete Times City Times:

SEMINOLE HEIGHTS SWEETENING: The long anticipated dessert and coffee shop next to Forever Beautiful Salon and Day Spa, 5135 N Florida Ave., is nearing completion.

The shop has been on the drawing board since 2000 when Elizabeth Graham bought a 1908 bungalow on nearby Hillsborough Avenue and its accompanying garage apartment.
She moved the buildings to their current site, turned the house into Forever Beautiful and devised plans to convert the garage apartment into a dessert and coffee shop.

After a series of delays, construction has finally begun.

Graham won't comment yet, but if appearances count for anything, the shop might be done before Starbucks opens early next year at Hillsborough and Central avenues.
Do you know something that should be everybody's business? Call 226-3394 or e-mail

Drive by and see the progress for yourself. Florida Avenue South Of Hillsborough, near Faedo's Bakery

Friday, October 21, 2005


Porch Party

Join your friends and neighbors for a gruesomely good time....

at a spooky, scary Halloween Porch Party!

Friday, October 28th at 7:00pm

At the home of Christie and Stuart Hess

1011 E. Broad Street

Please bring a ghoulish snack or beverage to share.

Costumes welcome but not required!

Halloween Decorating Contest

It's not too late to nominate your favorite Halloween decorations!

Nominations will be taken until October 25th.

Call 231-9102 or email

A prize will be given to the winner at the Halloween Porch Party.

Neighborhood Yard Sale - November 12th

Last call for Neighborhood Yard Sale participants!

Deadline to respond is October 25th

Call 231-9102 or email

to participate.

According to Hamlet, there is something fishy in Seminole Heights

Spotted on Nebraska, north of Sligh on East side. A hand painted sign indicating that Blue Sea Fish Market and Restaurant is coming soon. Is this real or is this another mirage restaurant?

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Blue Cans have arrived

Well it looks like much of Seminole Heights has gotten their large Blue Trash Containers. This is a new program of the City

This year the division will introduce fully-automated refuse collection services to the City of Tampa in the spring of 2005. Fully-automated refuse collection is a new technologically advanced waste collection system designed to improve collection efficiency, enhance performance, improve customer relations and reduce both operational and workers' compensation costs.

The automated operator uses a set of hand controls to mechanically lift and return a roll-out cart to curbside. Automated collection will be introduced to 6,500 residential customers. The goal is to expand fully-automated collection services to 80% of the City and semi-automated collection services to the remaining 20% of the City within a five year period.

However those of us in SE Seminole Heights have not gotten any and it is not clear when we will be getting them. According to a solid waste person I spoke to at Martha's the other day, apparently what has to happen first is that we need to be put on a program to separate our yard waste from household waste. The new can's only carry so much weight in them and this will reduce that weight.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Rivercrest Park

Another jewel in Seminole Heights is

This park located in South Seminole Heights is the southern most park in Seminole Heights. It is easily reached

From South Tampa, just go north on North Boulevard until you can't and you have run into the park.

This park has recently been made part of the Hillsborough River Greenway

It has many amenities.

Good playground equipment

A nice touch is that this equipment is handicapped accessible.

Fishing is a favorite activity. I liked the way this lady fished. A pole, A chair and a magazine/book.

There is a very good waterfront

Even docks, although I have never seen a boat tied up on it.

This is a canoe launching park

I'm guessing this is the launching site.

Throughout the park, a walking path runs through

In the center of the park is the Gazebo.

The three Seminole Heights Neighborhoods will be sponsoring a "Concert in the Park, A Movie Matinee" on Saturday, November 5th at 4PM at Rivercrest Park, under the Gazebo. The Sunshine Brass Band will be performing a selection of movie theme favorites. Everyone is invited to bring a blanket or chair and a picnic. Popcorn will be available for the total movie experience.

There is a interesting tree near the Gazebo

Curiously the park had another name in its past.

Starbucks Delayed

Well, I ran into a source at Publix who told me that Starbucks is delayed for some reason related to something with the city. I did not have my trusty notepad so what details were told to me were lost in memory. Except that it won't upon up until April

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Interesting Events

Florida Aquarium

Nauti-Night at The Florida Aquarium Friday, October 21, 2005: 8 pm to midnight Adults only: 21 and up Food and open bar; costume contests; and more! To purchase tickets, call 813-273-4568 or go to

Guppyween at The Florida Aquarium Sunday, October 30, 2005: 5 pm to 8 pm Kids in costume get in free; ages 12 and up: $10 admission Join the fishes for trick or treating at The Florida Aquarium! We'll have 20 trick or treat stations set up throughout the Aquarium and Explore-A-Shore. For more information, call 813-273-4000, or go to

Harold & Mod will be at our 6th Anniversary Party for The Artillery's latest incarnation. The Artillery is a creative collective based in St. Petersburg, Florida. They are a diverse group of artists united through a common goal, to inspire the community and establish a climate of positive change. By creating various public events, they express their vision of art and society.

DJ's Harold and Mod Indie / New Wave / Electro Mark Freifeld and Laurel Dickman are music buff historians from St. Petersburg, FL. Their mission is to expose esoteric tunes that deserve listening attention but just don't get played by other DJs. They're happy to take requests, but if it is the same damn song being played in every club... They probably won’t play it. They draw from indie rock, new wave, 70s punk, classic rock, electroclash, alt country, trip hop, general electronica, slowcore, prog rock (no rush), and hip hop (old school and independent).

So you should come too !this Saturday night October 15th from 7-11pm {Exhibition Duration: Saturday, October 15th-Sunday, October 30, 2005} Suggested Donation: $5

A Sweet Kiss Goodnight

Saturday, November 5th 7-midnight

Tampa’s Neo-Pop power couple Kathie Olivas & Brandt Peters are back for A Sweet Kiss Goodnight at Covivant. This time they are exhibiting under the name of Circus Posterus, their artist and designer collective. Participating artists include: Kathie Olivas, Brandt Peters, Rob Schwager, and guest artist Carrie Mackin.

Circus Posterus has been showing in the East Village -NY, New Jersey, and now Olivas and crew are currently working with Rosie O’Donnell to produce a new children’s TV series from her Misery Children collection. A Sweet Kiss Goodnight is a culmination of art created by each of the artists as well as collaborations between the collective. All new works of various scavengers, erotic muppets, Slap-happy toys, and many other creations that draw from pop culture and design.

businesses in Seminole Heights

I received this emal:

As Steering Committee Chairperson, I'd like to let you know that on October 10, six of the seven Steering Committee members of the proposed "Businesses of Seminole Heights Association" came together for a meeting at The Front Porch Grill.

The meeting included myself (Jay McGee - Grunt Marketing), Sherry King (Yesterdaze), Helen Harmon (Advanced Control Consulting), Suzanne Prieur (River City Realty), Elizabeth Graham (Forever Beautiful Salon) and Kitty Winrow (Kitty's Cleaning Services). Randy Baron (OSHNA) was not present, but submitted ideas before the meeting.

We are proud to report that the committee has now named the new "Business" organization and has created an official "Mission." These details will be officially disclosed at our next general meeting, with is being held at the Coffee Bean Cafe on November 3 at 7pm.

The Steering Committee's next meeting is to be held Oct. 23. The current agenda for that meeting is to discuss the organization's "Vision" as well as to define and prioritize the next committees to be developed.

Post Script to A. Leon Lowry

I searched Wikipedia and could not find an article on A. Leon Lowry. That's too bad. I'm surprised some high school or college student has not written one as a way of getting some extra credit for some Florida history class.

A. Leon Lowry

As I write for the blog, I am sitting in front of the TV watching a well prduced show on WEDU about A. Leon Lowry. He was the leading civil rights figure in Tampa who died in August. Fascinating story. I was amazed to find out he was a taught theology to Martin Luther King Jr. According to an article in the Tribune "Lowry was the first black member of the Hillsborough County School Board. He moved to Tampa in 1956 to become a pastor at Beulah and soon served as president of the state National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. He organized students from Booker T. Washington Junior High School and Blake and Middleton high schools for lunch counter sit-ins during the civil rights movement. Lowry Elementary School in Tampa is named for him. " State Representative Arthenia Joyner was one of his sit-in students. Tampa's Poet Laureate James Tokely did a nice job poetically narrating the show. It was interesting to see photos of racist Tampa, something you don't see very much. If they show it again, I'd suggest watching it.

Patel Motels

A couple times I delivered newsletters to the businesses along Hillsborough Avenue. At the East Gate motel there were some kids who came to the window to take the newsletter. This led me to wonder what it was like to grow up in such a place.

About every day I drive by the Alamo Motel (Hanna corner Nebraska). Off the Nebraska side of the motel is a little patio area, enclosed by chain link fence. Over the past 5 years I have watched the motel owners improve that area. They have painted the concrete floor, planted hedge bushes and put some kids toys out there. Occasionally I will see some women doing something as a group.
The Alamo is a small motel will an asphalt parking lot and essentially no greenery. Again I wonder what life is like there as a child or even as an adult. Living next to a busy urban street with no real place to play.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Preserving Your Old House---Making the Right Decisions

Old Seminole Heights



Tampa Preservation, Inc.

The Preserved Banner Award:

Preserving Your Old House-
Making the Right Decisions

Wednesday, November 16 7-9 P.M.
Seminole Garden Center
5810 Central Ave.
Old Seminole Heights

You will learn:

How to save money & protect the value of your house
Interesting information about your type of house
How to maintain the character of your house
How to qualify for a banner

Call Suzanne Prieur at 610-5255 for more information.

Throwing rocks will get you in jail

Well, another prostitute landed in jail for throwing rocks at Neighborhood Watch Patrol members. I received this email today.

"Today I sat in court to support Old Seminole Heights' Neighborhood Watch Vehicle Patrol. Two of their members were victims when one of the transvestite prostitutes threw rocks at their vehicle (back in May). Today that prostitute was convicted (in a jury trial) of criminal mischief AND harassing a member of neighborhood watch. For this offense Judge Padgett sentenced him to one year in jail. Last year a law went into effect that allows the police to charge anyone who threatens, harasses or intimidates Neighborhood Watch participants as they are performing their NW duties or while they are en route to any meetings or functions. This law was written by Captain Sophie Teague of Tampa PD and supported by Rep. Les Miller. Today's conviction is not the first success we have had with the law but it is important nonetheless. Warren Elly from Channel 13 was there and did a story on tonight's news about it. In watching today's events I was reminded just how important Neighborhood Watch can be. Sometimes you don't think the little things you do can make a difference but today I saw it. Two people who give up their time to make their (and our) streets safer made a difference. If you aren't involved in Neighborhood Watch I encourage you to consider participating. "

This is not the first conviction under the anti-harrasing a neighborhood watch law. Last year Tavaris Davis was one of the first in the state charged under that law for throwing rocks at Old Seminole Heights NW. He received 365 days in jail. Served 276.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Seminole Heights Businesses

Well I was going to write a little blurb about last night's meeting of the businesses of Seminole Heights. Susan beat me to it in an email to SE Sem Hts.

"Scott and I attended a meeting last night focused on forming an active business association in the greater Seminole Hts. area. The room was packed with energetic, enthusiastic people who have a vision for the commercial district of our community. Among them were the new owners of (Seminole Heights Sports and Rehabilitaton Center) on Florida, the owner of the (Urban Fitness) on Florida, Angelica of Viva la Frida's, Sherry Taylor King of Sherry's Yesterdaze, Suzanne Prieur who is a new force in the revitalization of our historic district, Ashley of Ashley's on the Avenue, Elizabeth of Forever Beautiful, and Milton of Coffee Bean Cafe and Now and Again Antiques. There were also artists, people with in-home businesses, and residents. Everyone was introduced, ideas were floated, and a steering committee formed to decide on a group name, group focus, bylaws and committee titles, etc.

The next meeting is set for Thursday, Nov.3, 7 p.m. at Coffee Bean Cafe. I encourage anyone who has an interest in revitalizing the business district of our neighborhood to attend. It was exciting to hear a simple idea thrown out and readily accepted. That idea was to coordinate businesses to decorate for the December holidays. Won't that brighten up Nebraska and Florida Avenues!"

This will be interesting group. There are some very dynamic people involved. A lot of good ideas.

One of the differences of this business group from all others in the city is that it includes home based businesses and artists. This has the potential of making it a much larger group, to broaden the expertise and to develop deeper ties with the residents.

This is the future of great business in Seminole Heights.

Oh by the way, Kathy Steele attended so expect a good article in the Tampa Tribune.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Recruiting for hooker patrol

One of the biggest reasons there are less prostitutes in Seminole Heights is because Old Sem Hts. and SE Sem Hts had organized Neighborhood Watch Vehicle Patrols that disrupted the business activity of the prostitutes. This combined with the fact that police engage in the same tactics also. Both patrols work together and patrol each others neighborhoods

Well as noted below in an message sent out today on SE Sem Hts email list we are getting an increase in prostitution activity.

"It's been a long time since we've had any email discussion about hookers (primarily the b/m transgenders who are the most aggressive). There was a brief time where we (along with OSH vehicle patrol) minimized their presence and definitely infringed on their "peak hours"....but that time is over. They are out in full force again as early as 12-12:30am and as late into the morning as 7am. Sherry and I went out Friday night from 12:30 to 3:30 and saw 8 of them.

So I'm sending out this email to ask for more volunteers to participate in Vehicle Patrol. You can go as little or as much as you'd like; drive or be a passenger; patrol evenings, middle of the night or early mornings. I will tell you it is a very enlightening process. If you think the prostitutes don't affect you then consider this...I saw one prostitute on his way to work walking in front of my house and he was coming from within the neighborhood (not outside). Another started walking down Frierson towards the park. Many of them walk inside a few blocks off Nebraska to get picked up and dropped off. They probably know the neighborhood better than you! I actually think patrolling is fun at times. I realize some of you probably think I'm nuts but I find it a very interesting study of human behavior (not to mention a GREAT lesson in fashion). For those concerned about safety you should know we always patrol with a partner and stay far enough away from the hookers to avoid confrontation. If anyone is interested in patrolling you can email me or contact Sherry Simons (head of the Vehicle Patrol)........

By the way, I wanted to give a big thanks to Corporal Leistl who was out there Friday/Saturday night while we were out. He was bugging them almost as much as we were!.

If you are interested in participating and do not live in SE Sem Hts you are welcome to ride along or join the SESH patrol us or you could become a member of the Old Seminole Heights Vehicle Patrol. Email me and I will forward the email to the appropriate patrol.

Martha's Restaurant

This Sunday Susan and I met Sherry Simons for breakfast at Marth'as Restaurant at 520 N. Nebraska Ave. It likely has the cheapest food in the area. We arrived about 7:45 AM, which was good because at 8:00 AM it filled up.

One of the things I like is that they quote 3 prices for each item they serve. With coffee, with nothing to drink and with juice. I had the sausage gravy with biscuits. Not bad. Not as good as the sausage gravy and biscuits I get at the TGH cafeteria but better than anyone else's I've been able to find. First most places just serve plain gravy and biscuits. Bleech. Then those that do serve sausage gravy, most taste as if someone made gravy wih biscuits and as an afterthought added sausage chunks.

The eggs were good. The food was served quickly.

Martha's must serve a lot of ice tea because each table had a bottle of lemon juice on it.

One of the waitresses used to work at Nicko's.

The restaurant had a lot of people eating there who were not shy about talking so the noise level was high. It is obvious she has a lot of long standing customers who know each other.

They were supposed to open 7 months ago but ran into problems with their kitchen. Things would get put in and then they have to be taken out for something else to be put in first. Then they had to wait for various inspections in between each of these things. However finally they are open.

One fortunate thing is that they bought the building from the landlord and so they have control over what happens with the place. I suspect at some point they will not renew the lease for Economy Insurance and will expand to that space.

If you want fancy look elsewhere. if you want cheap, comfortable food eat at Marthas. This is good news for SE Sem Hts people because many can now walk or bike ride to breakfast.