Tuesday, January 31, 2006


On our SE Seminole Heights neighborhood email list we have had some discussions going on about dogs. Stray and loose Dogs. Dogs being walked unleashed. Walked dogs going to the bathroom on people's yards. People being irresponsible pet owners.

Today I sent out the following email:

"It's clear from the rash of emails we have some big issues with dogs (and also cats) in this neighborhood. This is not the first time this has come up. There was big issue a while back about a pack of stray dogs running through the neighborhood.

To sum up the problems we have are:
Dogs roaming.
Dogs escaping.
Unspayed and un-neutered dogs.
Owners walking unleashed dogs.
Dogs being mistreated,abused/neglected by owners
Dogs just abandoned.
People not cleaning up after their dog goes to the bathroom.
Dogs just tied up in yards
Dogs that are not licensed and do not have necessary immunizations or proof of titers.

unspayed/unneutered feral cats.

We as a neighborhood need to take a more proactive approach, the same way we did with prostitution.
1. We need to educate our neighbors about how to escape proof their yard, about why the should be spayed and neutered, about leash laws, about proper treatment of dogs, need for licenses and etc.
2. We need to find methods of dealing with loose, escaped and abandoned dogs.
3. We need to seek better involvement by animal control and other appropriate authorities.
4. We need to know the laws and procedures involved.
5. We need to seek having a mobile low cost spay and neuter clinic come in at least twice a year.
6. We need to provide info about basic minimum care of our animals and also provide info about benefis of higher levels of care.
7. We need to particiapte in feral cat trap and nueter programs
8. We need to go hard against those serial violators.
9. We need to create a pool of animal foster parents and support them, if need be with money, food, time or other assistance.
10. We need to get in involved with local dog and cats activist groups.

In short we need education, enforcement and services.
We need a group of people willing to organize tackle this issue via the neighborhood association."

However I know this is something that affects the entire Seminole Heights area. I wonder if all 3 associations could get together on this issue, just the way we got together on prostitution? Work the city and county government and work the media, to point out what a problem it is and seek effective solutions beyond the status quo.

Like prostitution one answer will not solve the problem. We need to be creative.

The first step is to determine what are the existing laws and procedures, what services are available and what organizations are out there.

What does State Law, and City Ordinances have to say on the issue, where are there low cost spay and neuter clinics, what rescue organizations are there and etc. It is important not only to look at animal ordinances but related ordinances such as code enforcment and nuisance laws

Another step is to research what has been done in other communities, come up with our own ideas and then seek changes.

Hillsbrough County Animal Control Ordinance
Dangerous Dog Registry
Selected Florida Animal Related Laws
National Canine Research Foundation

Related prior blog story Spay Day

Cable TV Franchise

According to the Tampa Tribune, the County Commission will vote on the cable TV franchise tommorrow.

Hillsborough County officials, meanwhile, are pushing for more public and government channels from Bright House (for a total of five) in exchange for a new cable TV franchise - a deal that could generate more than $1 billion for cable companies in a 10-year span.

In a worst-case scenario for public access, advocates say their shows could end up marginalized, threatening their First Amendment-inspired mission to empower the public with access to airwaves and cable TV systems.

"With so much media consolidation, less than a dozen companies now own most of the newspapers, magazines, books and TV stations," said Louise Thompson, executive director of Speak Up Tampa Bay, which manages public access TV in Tampa Bay. "Local public access centers have become the only place where average people can go to get their message and stories across and petition their government for change."
In an email I received:

It has become very apparent that Brighthouse Networks is out to KILL the Education Channel and Explorer Channel in Hillsborough County.

The background on these local resources is that the two channels operated by Tampa Educational Cable Consortium were created as part of a Public or Community Benefits package the original cable provider pledged to the community when they initiated the cable development in Hillsborough County.

Along with many other things that developed from the Public Benefits package was the Communication Department at University of Tampa for instance. On February 1, 2006 the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) will negotiate this franchise agreement (which has been up for the past 3 years) in public. Brighthouse Networks has spent thousands of dollars to defame the worth and character of our services. They have created and aired ads on all their cable channels. They have sent postcards to all their subscribers. They have paid for a non-scientific survey that concludes "nobody watches educational access" and therefore we need to eliminate it."

More on the issue.

Call or email your County Commissioner, directly.
Kathy Castor: 272-5470
Ken Hagen: 272-5452
Tom Scott: 272-5720
Rhonda Storms: 272-5740
Jim Norman: 272-5725
Brian Blair: 272-5730
Mark Sharpe: 272-5735
email to: info@hillsboroughcounty.org

This is the email I am sending out:

"Dear Commissioner,

This is to urge to you to vote for more Public, Educational and Government (PEG) channels and to make Channel 19 - City of Tampa TV available for viewing by county residents. I also urge you to oppose any attempt to make any such channels "On Demand", as that will marginalize those channels.

Tampa and Hillsborough County is a diverse community and we need to continue to maintain accessible outlets for freedom of speech, even if it is something we disagree with. I prefer to make up my own mind as to what I want to watch, hear or read. I can always change the channel if I do not want to hear what is said, but that presumes the channel is there in the first place.

I understand this franchise agreement would mean $1 billion for cable companies in a 10-year span. In light of the Enron and Jack Abramoff scandals, it is obvious that what serves the corporate interests is not necessarily what serves the interests of the public, especially on local level. As a consequence I am very suspicious of those politicians, who would waste an opportunity to maintain or improve local public resources/access, as to whose interests they are really serve.

PEG channels are good for the community. I urge you to vote for the public's interest not a corporation's."

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Blue Sea Food Market and Restaurant finally opens

I received this email today:

Yesterday when I got home from the shop there was a flyer in my front door from the Blue Sea Food Market - Restaurant. So we got something to eat there last night. For under $9 (total) David & I got huge grouper sandwiches, cole slaw and hush puppies. It was good. They seemed surprised to get business (they've only been open less than a week). There was another woman there from S.H. who also came after receiving a flyer. They have a large variety of fish sandwiches and meals: Mullet, Grouper, Cat Fish, Founder, Trout and about 7 other kinds of fish. Plus Shrimp, Oysters, Scallops & Clams. Also side dishes of Egg rolls, onion rings, fries, hushpuppies, coleslaw and rice (the owners are asian). They also have chicken options too. Their prices are very reasonable. Their menu says they use pure vegetable oil, no salt, no cholesterol. Also they have lots of fresh fish for sale, filet & whole.

So today's news....we have another restaurant in Seminole Heights!!
Blue Sea is at 7110 N. Nebraska Mon-Sat 9-7, Fri. 9-8, Closed Sunday.

A Benefit of Gentrification

This is or rather was the most notorious drug dealer houses in our corner of the neighborhood. 4806 N. 10th Street (corner Louisiana). The teengagers and young adults who lived there and their friends including Willie Findley, dealt drugs from the porch, from the yard, from the street around the house. they also rode around in bicycles and offered mobile drug dealing. They would also deal along 15th Street. Despite multiple arrests the grandmother who owned the house refused to do anything about the drug dealing. At one point she was arrested because of drugs found in the home and that only temporarily stopped the activity. She said the kids were her kin and she was not about to boot them out of the home.

The drug dealing has now stopped because this home, and another problem house a block over, were recently sold. Thanks to gentrification we finally lost some bad people. This allows the rest of us good people, (poor and middle class, white and black) to live in peace.

The house is being completely redone. See the work as it progresses.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Increasing Office Space in Seminole Heights

I noticed recently an increased amount of office space being opened up in Seminole Heights.
The old chocolate factory at Giddens near Florida has finally opened up. It has a good sized parking lot on Florida next to Yesterdaze.

Here is a view from Giddens.

There is at least one tenant. Loretta Gallo-Lopez, a very good licensed mental health counselor whom I've known for years. She used to work with Psychological Management Group on North Florida Avenue. Welcome to Seminole Heights, Loretta!

If you want to lease some office space at Giddens Center call 915-9787.

This Victorian style house is being remodeled into office space. It is on Nebraska, south of Genessee.

The old site of Tintera Electric is also being turned into office space at Nebraska and Cayuga.

This space has been here for a year or so. Nebraska between and Osborne and Curtis, near Ybor Pizza.

Late last year I spoke to the owner of the old cobbler shop, next to the space above. He plans to turn this into 2 one man offices.

This space on Nebraska just south of Hanna, has been around for a couple of years and is just waiting for a tenant to move in at $685.00 a month.

Since I took these pictures I have seen even more work going on at other places.

Business Guild news story

In the Tribune:

Seminole Heights Plan Inspires Guild's Business Agenda
The Tampa Tribune Thu, 26 Jan 2006 4:18 AM PST
SEMINOLE HEIGHTS - Members of a new business guild say they will use a community-based plan as their guide to promote commercial development in the neighborhood.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Misty Schroeder Benefit

As noted by Barbie, this was posted on bekus live journal site regarding a benefit for Seminole Heights resident (Hampton Terrace)Misty Shroeder who was seriously injured in an auto accident.

Host: The United Squirrels and friends of Misty
Location: Mirta's Gallery and Coffee Bar
119 S. Hyde Park Ave., Tampa, FL
When: Saturday, February 4, 7:00pm to 11:00pm
Phone: (813) 259-0305.
Admission: Donation at the door

As most of you know, our friend, Misty Schroeder, was in a car accident on January 10th of this year. The purpose of this art benefit is to bring together those who love her and any kind hearts willing to help her recover. The artists involved have donated their best work for sale at the benefit, and 100% of all art sales will go directly into an account we've created for Misty.

There will be complimentary wine available, and coffee and pastries for sale throughout the night.

Misty's work will be featured and available through a silent auction during the event.

Art by: Jimibob, Frank Strunk III, April McGown, Sarah Sargent, Beki McElvain, Jason June, J. Wesley + Takashi, Leslie, Misty Schroeder, Areti Marangaki (and others).

Music by: Trans-Mission, Guiltmaker, and The Andrew David Thompson Experience

The Luggage king

The Luggage King (as we call him in SE Seminole Heights) was featured in the Tampa Tribune

Stay At Home Mom's Support Groups

This was also posted in the comments sections of Welcome message of the blog and again I'm afraid it will get lost.

If this needs to get started, we can create an email group to help get it going and keep it active.

"I am new to this Blog and new to the new SeminoleHeights.com website, but
I have lived in Seminole Heights for 4 years. I recently became a mom to a
beautiful boy and I am looking for our neighborhood's play groups, mommy groups,
and baby sitting co-ops, etc. I can't seem to find any!

We seem to have all other kind of support groups but nothing for our
neighborhood's children and stay-at-home-moms?

If there is anyone out there who can help me, please let me know,
or if we do not have anything like this already, lets get it started!

Please respond here or contact me at my seminole heights email address.
Thank-you and I look forward to hearing from you neighborhood moms and dads. Have a beautiful day in OSH! reneeking (at) seminoleheights.com"

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

National Spay Day

This was posted as a comment on one of my first posts Welcome. It likely will get lost so I am making it a posting of it's own.

I think we have a big problem with non-spayed and neutered dogs and cats and an event like this would be great.

"My name is Angela Fouraker and I have lived in OSH for about a year now. I am a
professional pet sitter who works primarily in the South Tampa area. I was
hoping though that an event could be organized here in OSH for the National Spay
Day. If anyone is interested in helping organizing this project and finding an
appropriate place to have it, let me know. You can find out more on the official
web site at www.SpayDayUSA.org. The national spay day is scheduled for Feb. 28 and maybe some of the local pet owners could have a costume contest and we could also have some local businesses set up booths, maybe even a live band. I think it would be a great way for all of the pet lovers in OSH to come out and meet each other as well as learn about the benefits of spaying and neutering your cats, dogs and even other animals. This would also be great for the OSH community to decrease the feral cat population (catch and release programs can be implemented) and perhaps owners would change their minds about spaying or neutering their dogs to reduce the pet population. You can contact me at AngelaPetSit@gmail.com if you are
interested in sponsoring or volunteering for this worthy cause."

Additionally, I did some research and found that there is a a monthly donations-based spay/neuter program for feral cats of Hillsborough County called Project Spay Day organized by the Animal Coalition of Tampa . WMNF Radio has participated in a feral cat trap-neuter-return program in past with some of the feral cats around the station.

However aside from feral cats, we have a lot of pet owners who need to get their animals neutered. This would be great to have some sort of event like this. Maybe it could tied in with the dog park at Giddens Park or the Southeast Seminole Heights Dog Day In The Park event.

Yes, we have a dog park, although it is not mentioned on the City website. It is at Giddens Park, next to the Kathryn Malone Center, at Giddens and 12th.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Does Tom Gallagher Think Conservative Republicans Are Idiots?

Today I get some mail from Tom Gallagher.

On the front of the envelope is "Your Gallagher for Governor bumper sticker is enclosed"

Inside is a letter and an actual bumper sticker. I can tell it is a bumper sticker because of its dimensions, the back peels off and there a slogan "Tom Gallagher for Governor" on it.

The letter then says

I am writing to ask a personal favor of you. (By the way - usually when people ask favors of me, I get one in return - so what's my favor going to be?)

Will you consider joining my campaign for Governor of Florida by putting the enclosed bumper sticker on your car?

I hope you say yes and will put your "Tom Gallagher for Governor" bumper sticker on your car today.

Will you consider joining my campaign by placing the enclosed bumper sticker on your car or truck today?

To do there is nothing more important you can do than put a "Tom Gallagher for Governor" bumper sticker on your vehicle today.

I would be honored to have your endorsement and I hope you will put the enclosed sticker on your car today.

So five times on the first page of the letter he asks to have the bumper sticker placed on my vehicle.

Then three more times during the rest of the letter he repeats the request.

Will you join my campaign today and put the enclosed "tom Gallagher for Governor" bumper sticker on your car or truck today?

I really hope you will put your "Tom Gallagher for Governor" bumper sticker on your vehicle today

Please join me today by putting your sticker on your vehicle...

Finally, in a reply card there is a check off box "I am placing my Gallager for Governor bumper sticker on my vehicle today."

Why is this being repeated? Do conservative Republicans not know where a car bumper sticker goes? Was this letter developed because in a focus group they found that conservative Republicans were using the bumper sticker other ways? Are hordes of conservative Republicans using these as a large bandaids or maybe a lint picker-uppers?

Is Tom Gallagher saying that conservative Republicans are idiots?

For those who have read Tom Gallagher's letter and still don't know what to do with the bumper sticker, go to Sherry's Yesterdaze and you will find a visual aid. Sherry's van has plenty of bumper stickers on it. With a lot better slogans.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Seminole Heights News Stories

Team Effort For Athletes Proves To Be Class Act
The Tampa Tribune Sat, 21 Jan 2006 7:47 AM PST
SEMINOLE HEIGHTS - Old school ties bind. So Arnaldo Pelaez, Class of 1943, and Tim Pelaez, Class of 1969, returned this month to Hillsborough High School.

Gay-Lesbian Community Center opens in Tampa
Tampa Bay's 10 Fri, 20 Jan 2006 8:58 PM PSTTampa, Florida - While many people march to a different beat, those at the opening of Metro Diversity center point to the fact they are part of this community.

Diversity center a haven to hang out
St. Petersburg Times - Jan 19 10:14 PMA social services agency and a church open Metro Diversity Center today for gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people.

Notebook: Henry B. Plant Museum hosts Gasparilla exhibit
St. Petersburg Times - St. Petersburg,FL,USA... OLD SEMINOLE HEIGHTS - The Tampa Orchid Club's monthly meeting begins at 10 am Tuesday at the Seminole Garden Center, 5800 N Central Ave. ...

He loved Ybor; he loved art
St. Petersburg Times - St. Petersburg,FL,USA... "Chuck was bohemian at heart," said Angelica Diaz, now an Old Seminole Heights restaurant owner who introduced Gruber to the Ybor art scene. ...

Old Seminole heights Happenings

1. OSHNA’ s General Membership Meeting will be held this
Tuesday, January 24th, 7:00 PM,
at the Seminole Heights United Methodist Church
(corner of Central and Hanna Avenues).
Be a friend and bring a neighbor!


Get your application in by March 15 !

Since 1982, Tampa Preservation, Inc. has been recognizing significant contributions to the preservation of Tampa’s historic resources through their Annual Award Program. TPI invites the community to participate this year by submitting nominations for outstanding preservation projects, programs and achievements by individuals and organizations. The application deadline is March 15, 2006. The winning accomplishments will be applauded by TPI’s Annual Preservation Celebration to be held on Friday, April 21, 2006, at the National Historic Landmark Tampa Bay Hotel, Plant Hall at the University of Tampa.

Projects are judged according to compliance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties. To view these standards, go to http://www.cr.nps.gov/hps/tps/standards_guidelines.htm.

Award applications can be gotten by contacting Suzanne Prieur at 610-5255, who will be glad to assist you in completing your application, including shooting photos. They will also be available at OSHNA’s January General Meeting.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Business Guild of Seminole Heights meeting results

(When you think of businesses in Seminole Heights - think Business Guild of Seminole Heights)

This was a great meeting with 35 to 40 people were present. Great coffee Coffee Bean Cafe, and sandwich wraps, chips and dip by Front Porch Restaurant. The Tampa Tribune was present, but the St. Petersburg Times was missing. Tsk tsk tsk.

Top 5 things right with Seminole Heights:
Great community with diverse demographics, Easily accesible locations, politically active and recognized, unique architecture, and good communication amonst some of the local businesses.

Room for improvement:
Beautification of roads, storefronts, sidewalks and signage; lack of parking; no co0makreting between busineeses, zoning contraints, need ot change fro mcommericla intensive ot commercial general, car lots and unfriendly businesses, lack of business diversity (ie need more banks etc), and bounderies of Seminole Heights unrecognized by many. Crime was very low on the list.

A great slogan came out of the meeting: "Reaching new heights in Seminole Heights" coined by one of the members, whose name I will mention once I check the spelling.

Randy Baron mentioned some great commentary he made today at Tampa City Council about the Tribune getting rid of the Central Tampa edition and placing us in the South Tampa Section. He got some positive response from City Council members. I will quote it all, once it comes out in the City Council transcripts.

BG'OSH needs a logo. It must have the full name of the Guild in it. There is a contest, to end on March 31. Drop all entries off at Yesterdaze during business hours. The best 3 will be brought to the April general meeting to be voted on.

Tony Garcia did a presentation on the status of the Seminole Heights Strategic Business Plan. Apparently City Council has told the various City Department who affect the plan to come up with written responses on how they can support the plan.

Elements from the by-laws were shared:

Full members are businesses located in Seminole Heights, whether bricks and mortar, artists or independent contractors. Full members can vote. Each business can have only one vote. Full members membership dues are $30.00

All others (residents, interested parties and etc) are associate members. They can't vote. Thier dues are $15.00

Then the group broke up into interest groups to discuss and brainstorm. I was in the marketing group. Very exciting group.

The whole evening was energizing. This group is going places!

The meeting place, A. W. Windhorst Masonic Lodge was very cool. I will be doing a whole article on it after some more research.

Business Guild Meeting tonight!

The Business Guild of Seminole Heights (B'GoSH) is holding
General Meeting at 7pm on tonight, Jan. 19, 2006, at A.W. Windhorst Lodge.
A.W. Windhorst Lodge is located in Seminole Heights at 5011 N. Nebraska
Ave. (on the southeast corner of Caracas Ave. & Nebraska Ave.)

Business Owners, Artists and all parties interested in Seminole Heights
are encouraged to attend.

Food by Front Porch Restaurant
Coffee by Coffee Bean Cafe

Kathy Castor Reaches Out to Bloggers.

I received this email today from Kathy Castor's campaign for congress. Let's see if more candidates reach out to bloggers and thus to public the like she has.

Today at 3:30 pm Kathy Castor will be hosting an online discussion about the recent ethics reforms proposed in Washington. For the past three years she has
been a leader in the fight for ethics reforms at the local level. Her efforts
have resulted in a complete gift ban, lobbyist disclosure for meetings with
commissioners, and full disclosure of travel expenses on public dollars. This
forum will give bloggers a chance to talk directly with Kathy about how these
reforms will stop the culture of corruption in Washington and about how they
reflect the efforts she has made at the local level. If you would like to participate please respond to this email with your name, blog, and email address. We will then send you a URL, user ID, password to enter the chat, and a memo outlining her plan for stricter laws regulating lobbyists and special interest groups. Kathy looks forward to chatting with all of you.

"These bills propose meaningful change, but we must ensure that these changes are not simply politically convenient reforms," Castor said

"I have worked tirelessly on the County Commission to pass meaningful reforms that restore citizen confidence in government," Castor said. Castor believes that we must
consider all options and take a hard line on reforming government. "No more
insider trading, no more lobbyist gifts, no more privately funded travel, and no
more spending public tax dollars without accountability," Castor said.

(Editor's note: - the following is my comment)
As a consequence of culture of corruption created by Conservative "Christian" Republicans, as a moderate christian (in the broad sense) Republican, I am suspicious of any conservative republicans. Do they have their bible in one hand, preaching godliness and my wallet in the other, stealing from me?

Addendum 10:14 P.M. For more read the article in Florida Politics

Metro Diversity Center GRAND OPENING!

This started out as simply a little blurb about:

Metro Diversity Center GRAND OPENING!
“A Special Collaboration with MCC Tampa”
Your Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center
Grand Opening is Friday, January 20th 6:30 PM – 10:00 PM
Entertainment * Food * Prizes *
Located at 6421 N. Florida Ave. PH: 813-232-3808
Visit online

Then I decided I wanted to know a little more about Metropolitan Charities and did a online newspaper search and internet search. Thanks to GlobalAge.org I discovered the press release below. What is interesting is that this did not appear in the St. Petersburg Times nor in the Tampa Tribune.
"News Release
Community centers join forces
to serve both sides of the Bay.
(Surprise! Two gay groups unite, rather than guard their turf!)
Contact: Metropolitan Charities Inc., Lorraine Langlois, executive director, 727-321-3854
The Center of Tampa Inc., Jim Harper, spokesperson 813-835-9396

March 10, 2005

"Two GLBT community centers in Tampa and St. Petersburg have formed a strategic partnership to share resources and work to improve services and activities on both sides of Tampa Bay.

Starting April 1, the Gay and Lesbian Community Center of Tampa, also known as The Center of Tampa Inc., will convert the money it has been spending to rent space on Swann Avenue to support activities at the Metro Center in St. Petersburg.

The Metro Center is a full-service GLBT community center at 3170 Third Ave. N, next door to Georgie’s Alibi. Metropolitan Charities Inc., an established St. Petersburg service provider, opened the Metro Center last fall, and it has already attracted a growing number of community groups and activities for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people.

The new partnership between Metropolitan Charities and the Center of Tampa is an interim step. The two groups are working together on a strategic plan, including a feasibility study, to open a new Metro Center in Tampa, perhaps as early as next fall. When that happens, the two non-profit organizations expect to merge.

“When two organizations have the same mission, it makes a lot more sense for them to work together than separately,” said Dr. Craig Linden, the Tampa center’s founder and current board member. “We think this partnership and eventual merger will help us do a better of job of serving the entire Tampa Bay community, which has been our purpose all along.”

“Joining forces with the Tampa center gives us resources we didn’t have yet,” said Lorraine Langlois, who has led Metropolitan Charities since its founding 11 years ago. “We took a big step forward when we expanded our services in St. Petersburg, and we’re pleased with the results. But without the financial and volunteer help of the Tampa supporters, we wouldn’t be ready to extend ourselves further.” Indeed, leaders of both groups say each provides something that the other has lacked.

Metropolitan Charities has a fulltime presence and a professional administrative staff. Many of its 31 staff members are supported by government grants to provide AIDS support services and cannot be used for other purposes. But the organization’s long-time stability has attracted other money that is being used to develop the community center. Such synergies have proven effective in other GLBT community centers around the country.

The Center of Tampa, meanwhile, has struggled for years to survive on volunteer help alone. It abruptly closed its doors once, and was on the verge of closing again three years ago when a new board of directors stepped forward to keep it open. Even so, the single meeting room it has subleased from Equality Florida since 2000 hasn’t been enough of an asset to help the Center expand its profile and services.

What the Center does have, however, is an endowment -- the residue of a capital fundraising drive that began 10 years ago. The original purpose of the drive was to buy a building that other GLBT organizations could use for free. That was never accomplished, and some of the money was used to support a paid executive director in the 1990s. Since then several generations of board members have vowed to keep the remaining endowment intact. About $120,000 remains.

“We were just trying to hang on, to keep the idea of the Center alive, until we could create the right combination of circumstances to move forward,” said Jim Harper, leader of the group that took over the Center in 2002. Harper and two others from that group, Martin Padgett and Herbe Murray, have remained on the board.

“My original plan was to buy a building free and clear because I thought that would work,” said Linden, who returned to the board in 2003. “But now I’m convinced there are other ways to use that money as an investment in the future – by attaching it to a proven organization with the same mission as ours, and which has the experience and skill to create a community center that thrives on its own.”

The two groups have begun exploring options for space somewhere in Central Tampa that could house a combination community and services center similar to the Metro Center in St. Petersburg. Langlois estimates that the group would need about 8,000 to 10,000 square feet. Metropolitan Charities already has a service office in Tampa, at 1549 N. Franklin Street, but it is too small for a community center as well. The lease on that building expires in September.

Meanwhile, the groups that have been using the Tampa Center are being offered temporary meeting space until the new Metro Center opens. The Center’s current location will close on April 1.

“Part of our mission is to provide a home for gay and lesbian organizations, and we don’t want to abdicate our responsibility,” said Linden. “The Center isn’t closing, just transitioning, and we don’t want to leave anyone in the lurch.”

“We considered renting some interim space, either in our current location or elsewhere,” said Linden. “But with other free space available, we decided it made more sense to focus that money on making the St. Pete center as strong as it can be, so that we can build the foundation for success in Tampa.

While the transition might seem inconvenient to some, supporters of the Tampa center say they need only look to St. Petersburg to see the payoff ahead. The Metro Center has a full calendar of movie and game nights, line dancing, art and yoga classes, discussion groups and seniors activities. It also provides office space to St. Pete Pride and True Expressions, the GLBT youth group. It has a paid part-time activities director, and other employees are available daily to answer the phones.

“We’ve been wanting something like that in Tampa for a long, long time,” said Harper. “All we need is a few more months of patience and hard work. It’ll come.”

Welcome to Seminole Heights.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006


I had to comment about this. According to the AP "Face Transplant Patient Smokes Again".

"The world's first face transplant recipient is using her new lips to take up smoking again, which doctors fear could interfere with her healing and raise the risk of tissue rejection. "

". . . which besides being bad in general for health is especially a problem after surgery because it impairs circulation to tissues and could raise the risk of rejection."

Why o' why o' why? (Heavy sigh)

My father was a laryngectomee. He had his voice box removed due to cancer from heavy smoking and also likely because years of working with hazardous fumes in the copper smelting field (The Andaconda Corp in Chuquicamata Chile, and at PASAR in the Philippines) He voluntered at Bay Pines Hospital and one of the things he did was to talk (via esophageal speech) to new laryngectomees and give them support. Unfortunately he occasionally would run into a laryngectomee who continued smoking, by placing the cigarette up to the stoma (hole) in the throat.

Again. Why o' why o' why?

Florida Laryngectomee Association (F L A)

WMNF News and Public Affairs Fundraiser - This is what Democracy Sounds Like

Okay. So I am slow on the uptake. Seminole Height's own WMNF radio (88.5) is having (or had) a fundraiser for the News and Public Affairs today.

Question: So why should you donate?

Answer: Bill O'Reilly.

"This Wednesday we're broadcasting a special day of News & Public Affairs
programs - and raising funds to keep this independent, commercial-free community
radio station on the air!

You can support WMNF right now"

"You make this radio station possible. Your help keeps progressive,
open-minded information on the air - news that goes deeper than mainstream
headlines. Keep yourself informed and keep democracy alive -- support community
radio and these vital information sources by joining WMNF today."
You say you don't listen to WMNF? Oooh, tssk, tssk, tssk.

Here is a listing of the News and Public Affairs shows:

Empowerment Hour - Eliot Steele
Sunday Forum - Otis Anthony
Sunday Simcha - Marc Rosenwasser, Kevin Frye
Two Worlds - Chante Ishta, Cathy Schulz
Fresh Air
Democracy Now
Radioactivity: Live Call-In - Rob Lorei
WMNF Evening News - Mitch Perry
Alan Watts
One Step Forward -Randi Zimmerman
Greenwaves - Bill Stokes, Joe Murphy, Randall Luttenberg
Making Contact
Out in the Open -John Chambrone
Alternative Radio
Art In Your Ear - JoEllen Schilke
Radioactivity / True Talk - Rob Lorei, Ahmed Bedier, Samar Jarah
Friday Feedback -Sarah Miselis
Women's Show -Arlene Engelhardt, Mary Glenney

SE Seminole Heights Newsletter

As do all of the Seminole Heights civic associations, SE Seminole Hts has a newsletter, the Neighborhood News.

The newsletter always welcomes articles, stories and comments by SE Seminole Heights residents. And of course it always welcomes advertising. For more details, email the association.
Here are the deadlines:

March (Includes Banner Awards and Membership List)
Ads/Articles February 22
To Press March 1
To Distribution March 11

Ads/Articles April 19
To Press April 27
To Distribution May 6

July (Includes Banner Awards and Membership List)
Ads/Articles June 21
To Press June 28
To Distribution July 8

Ads/Articles August 30
To Press September 1
To Distribution September 9

October (Supplemental - 4 pgs. also Includes Banner Awards and
Membership List)
Ads/Articles September 26
To Press October 3
To Distribution October 7

SE Seminole Heights Awards

Tuesday night, the Southeast Seminole Heights Civic Association gave out certificates of appreciation to various people, including City Council member Linda Saul-Sena, Assistant Chief of Police Jane Castor, Major George McNamara, and Tampa City Council Legal Counsel Martin Shelby

Outgoing president Beverly Morrow read the following:

Major George McNamara, Division Commander of the Criminal Investigation Division
Our first recipient has been very supportive of our Neighborhood Watch and Mobile Patrol programs. He has walked many miles along side us in our drug marches and continues to serve on our Hillsborough County Prostitution Task Force. He is one of the most dedicated officers I have ever known and a very good friend to Southeast Seminole Heights.

During the time he served as Commander of TPD’s District III, crime statistics within our neighborhood plummeted, especially our long term problems with street level crime.

Most recently, he has assumed a new position with TPD as the Division Commander of the Criminal Investigation Division. These are just some of the high points of his long and successful career with the Tampa Police Department, as his achievements are just too many to list in a limited time frame.

Thank you, Major George McNamara, for all you have done to elevate our quality of life and to make our neighborhood a safer place to live, work and play. It is our great pleasure to honor you with this Certificate of Appreciation.

Rich Guagliardo
He moved to Southeast Seminole Heights about a year ago and began attending Porch Parties and immediately became a member of our association.

As a very successful realtor, he works hard to help neighbors when they are ready to sell their home and he finds just the right home for those new neighbors wishing to join our community. Then, he goes one step further. He gives each of those new homeowners a special gift: membership in our Southeast Seminole Heights Civic Association. He has gifted memberships to over 20 new members.

He is also a major supporter of and contributor to our fundraising efforts for Giddens Park renovations, which include Dog Day in the Park and the new Dog Day in the Park calendar.

Rich Guagliardo, in appreciation for all the many ways you support and promote our community, please accept this Certificate of Appreciation.

Andrew Baker
Long term service. That is what comes to mind when I think of this next recipient of our Certificate of Appreciation. Some of that long term service to our community includes:
- Served on our Board of Directors for over seven years
- Walked for 2 years with our “Exercise Club” – the forerunner of our Mobile Patrol
- Member of our Neighborhood Watch and our Mobile Patrol
- Wrote grants and secured funds for our Neighborhood Watch, in addition to other projects
- Chair of our Green Printing Committee for Giddens Park and
- Fellow traveler with board members to the Neighborhoods USA Conference in Chattanooga in 2003. He was a co-presenter of our Award Winning Project: The Home Improvement Team (H.I.T.) Program. We were awarded First Place and the distinction of being named the National Neighborhood of the Year 2003. The H.I.T. Program, brain-child of board member Maria Garcia, is still going strong and helping neighbors to tackle home projects that they could not accomplish alone.

Andrew Baker, I have only touched on some of the many ways you have served our community over the years. We thank you for your many years of dedication to Southeast Seminole Heights, as you continue to serve this community. Please accept our appreciation and our gratitude.

David “Scott” Banghart
You catapulted our association into the “computer age,” as the facilitator of our neighborhood email group, giving us a means of “instant and mass communication.” Next, you created our first website, giving us the broader exposure of the internet. You hold the undisputed title as our “blogmaster,” being recently recognized by the St. Pete Times for your very successful blog site.
As originator and facilitator of the Hillsborough County Prostitution Task Force, you brought many key participants to the table. Among those task force members working with you to find workable solutions to the problems of street level prostitution and the street level crimes it spawns are:
- City Department Heads
- Local and State Officials
- Tampa’s Neighborhood Watch
- The State Attorney’s Office
- Major George McNamara and other TPD representatives and
- Many Neighborhood Leaders throughout the City
You are on a “first name” basis with most of the reporters of local newspapers and TV stations. Because you have successfully brought our community’s issues and our successes
before the media, we have gained both respect and recognition within the City of Tampa, and beyond.

For well over 7 years, you have served your community in many other capacities. Some of those are:
- Board Member
- Home Improvement Team (HIT) member
- Neighborhood Watch, including 2 years of walking with the notorious “Exercise Club”
- Mobile Patrol volunteer
- Dog Day in the Park volunteer
- Home Tour volunteer, including serving as a trolley tour guide and
- Landscaping volunteer for both the Giddens Park and the Kathryn Malone Center projects in recent years

David “Scott” Banghart, thank you for your continuing service and dedication to Southeast Seminole Heights. It is with much gratitude and pleasure that we give you this Certificate of Appreciation.

City Councilwoman, Linda Saul-Sena
The next person we wish to honor is one of our elected officials. She has offered her support to our community on many levels through her interest and her assistance in many of the development programs of Southeast Seminole Heights. She

- Attends our Home Tours and our Dog Day in the Park fundraising events for Giddens Park
- Supports stronger enforcement of the Seminole Heights Residential Overlay District Ordinance - Helps us to coordinate plans between the City Parks and Recreation Department, the Mayor’s Beautification Program, and the Public Works Department, during the continuing renovation of Giddens Park

City Councilwoman Linda Saul-Sena, please accept this Certification of Appreciation from a community that is very grateful for your continuing support and interest.

Martin Shelby, Legal Counsel to Tampa’s City Council
Our next recipient serves as the legal counsel to Tampa’s City Council. He attends every City Council meeting and interprets and clarifies ordinances and legal procedures at all their hearings. He has helped educate us on the legal process, as it pertains to our neighborhood issues. He attends our Neighborhood Improvement Code Enforcement City wide meetings and has been very supportive of the changes and improvements we are seeking in the areas of neighborhood improvement.

Martin Shelby, you have been a communication liaison between neighborhoods, City Council, and the City Department heads.

Thank you for your support of Tampa’s neighborhoods and especially for all the assistance you have given to Southeast Seminole Heights. We look forward to working with you for many years to come and are very pleased to offer you this Certificate of Appreciation.

Major Jane Castor, Assistant Police Chief
Because Southeast Seminole Heights lies within two Tampa Police Department Districts, we have had the opportunity of working with two previous commanders. One of those has her roots in Seminole Heights.

She is a graduate of Chamberlain High, as well as a graduate of the University of Tampa. While attending the University of Tampa on a full basketball and volleyball scholarship, she received recognition as a real champion. In fact, if the WNBA had existed at the time she graduated, this ex-Spartan may have put her law enforcement career on hold for a while, in favor of a basketball career. She was that good. After graduation, she became a volunteer in the community, serving as a basketball coach for several youth groups.

The former commander of District II has lived in Seminole Heights for many years and shares our goals for this community. She is a dedicated, very professional “can do” leader, who has quickly risen within the ranks of TPD. She continues to support and champion our causes and goals for Southeast Seminole Heights, as we work to improve our quality of life.

As of September 1, 2005, Major Jane Castor assumed her new position: Tampa’s Assistant Police Chief. Jane, we are privileged to also call you “friend.” Please accept this token of our community’s appreciation for all you continue to do for us and for the City of Tampa.

Ellison Smith
This next person we wish to recognize has given new meaning to the phrase, “neighborhood volunteer.” Let me list just a few of her involvements in Southeast Seminole Heights:
- Served on our Board of Directors
- Member of our H.I.T. (Home Improvement Team)
- Member of Neighborhood Watch
- Walked with the “Exercise Club” for 2 years; then
- Volunteered for our Mobile Patrol
- Organized our Court Watch program
- Served as a volunteer on both Holiday Home Tours and organized our first year’s Vender Village
- Serves on the Dog Day in the Park Committee
- Organized neighbors to produce our first Southeast Seminole Heights Cook Book – a fundraising project that benefits both our Membership Committee and Giddens Park
- Assisted in the development of our first Dog Day in the Park Calendar for 2006, yet another fundraising effort for our park.
- Serves as co-organizer for the distribution of Holiday Luminaries
- Past Chair of the Social Committee, on which she continues to serve as a member
- Organizer of the December Holiday Social for our members and
- As a member of the Southeast Seminole Heights Youth Group Committee, she has helped to plan several successful youth projects

She is always there to support and help organize all of our events, giving extra attention to the many special details that make them so successful and memorable. To many of us she is affectionately known as “Martha,” as in “Stewart.” Ellison Smith, your picture is in the dictionary beside the word: “volunteer.” For all you have done and continue to do for Southeast Seminole Heights, we want to say, “Thank you, Ellison.”

Diane Jenkins
When she purchased her home in Southeast Seminole Heights about 7 years ago, she wasted no time in becoming involved in her neighborhood as:
- A member of SESHCA
- A member of our Neighborhood Watch, often walking with the early group, the “Exercise Club”
- As a member of our Mobile Patrol and
- As a volunteer for both of our Holiday Home Tours, serving as a “Trolley Wench”
She accepted the Chair position of several committees, and has served on the Dog Day in the Park Committee for 3 years. She has organized 2 very successful Neighborhood Yard Sales and Child I.D. events.

Even after moving back to our “sister” neighborhood, Old Seminole Heights, she continues to chair her original committees and maintains her SESHCA membership. I just call her “Double Duty Diane.” Diane Jenkins, thank you for your continuing dedication to Southeast Seminole Heights. Please accept this certificate as an expression of our gratitude.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006


The Seminole Heights Branch Library is holding is annual book sale (as copied from the OSHNA website)

Friday, February 10, 2006 (5:30 pm - 7:00 pm) and Saturday, February 11,
2006 (9:00 am - 2:00 pm)

At the Seminole Heights Branch Library at 4711 Central
Avenue (corner of Osborne & Central Avenues).

Please donate books (new or used, hardback or paperback),
records, CDs, DVDs, VHS videos, computer software/games,
quality magazines (if you wouldn’t buy it, we probably can’t sell
it) children’s books and learning materials to the library during
regular operating hours. Donations welcome up to the day of
the sale. All proceeds benefit the library. For more information
call Steve Gluckman at 238-9115.

Next OSHNA Porch Party

From the OSHNA Bungalow Alert (Old Seminole Heights)

Join in the fun!
at a Neighborhood
Porch Party

Friday, January
20th at 8:00pm

5904 N. Dexter Ave.

Please bring a snack or beverage to share.

Porch parties are a great opportunity to gather with neighbors and a fun way to meet new people. If you're interested in hosting a porch party, please contact Helen Harmon

Positive Stories and Press Releases

In a previous post there was a discussion about the need for positive press stories for Seminole Heights. I indicated that these stories don't get in the paper by themselves, that we need to alert the media of these stories.

Case in point. I missed an opportunity to get some press out of a recent porch party. This porch party has evolved into the Southeast Seminole Heights Second Annual Chili Cookoff. Mike and Joel host the party. They recruit neighbors to cook their best chili recipes. Each neighbors pays $10 to enter their chili. The other neighbors judge the chili and the winner gets a $100.00. So far the winners have donated their winnings to charity. This year 10 neighbors suplied chili and more than 50 neighbors went to the party. This would have made a great story that we might have been able to get print and TV media to do a story. But I did not think of it until too late.

There are several ways we can alert the media. One is via any personal contacts. However most often we many not know all of the media folks involved. This could be most effective if we were to write press releases.

Here are some links I have found. As I read them and do library reading on the subject I will revisit this issue. I have just been appointed the Public Information Officer for the Southeast Seminole Heights Civic Association, so I have a lot of reading to do. If you have better links or comments please do your usual and say something. Perhaps our news media folks who live inthe neighbrhood can add some insights.

I always think, "What is the hook? Why is this something someone would want to read in the paper or watch on TV?

Dr. Randall Hansen's Guide to Writing Successful Press Releases - from Stetson University
- A Barebones Guide to Writing Successful Press Releases
- A Publicity Primer, by Kirk Hallahan.

Articles from ImediaFax
- Ten Tips For Using E-Mail To Get More News Coverage and Publicity
-Getting More Publicity for Fund Raising Activities
-What goes in an online media kit?

Monday, January 16, 2006

Sulphur Springs Tower

Kathy Steele of The Tribune reported that there is some (slow) progress occurring with the beautiful Sulphur Springs Water Tower. Apparently there are two studies planned.

"The study will look at ways to repair and preserve the 1927 tower at Florida Avenue and Bird Street, and a gazebo next to the Sulphur Springs swimming pool on Nebraska Avenue. The city has an agreement with the Florida Department of Transportation to build a trail connecting the tower and gazebo, said parks and recreation spokeswoman Linda Carlo."
Note this comment:
"Janet Stanley, a founder of the grass-roots Save Our Tower group, has mixed feelings.

"If this was downtown, it would be done by now," she said. "It's just languished over there."
When this gets done, I hope it is promoted up as one of Tampa's tourist attractions. This could help bring more people to our area to spend money and boost our image.(even though it belongs to Sulphur Springs)

Willie Findley

Convicted drug dealer Willie Findley has finally traded uniforms. Previously when he dealt drugs in our neighborhood, he wore the typically drug dealer outfit of the oversized white T-shirt.

Now he is in prison blues.

I like this uniform much better.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Political Paper Grafitti - Anti George Bush

Political Paper Grafitti - Anti George Bush. Also the logo that was on the No No No Starbucks sign. The websites on the Bush bill are http://www.cooperativeresearch.org, http://911forthetruth.com, http://fromthewilderness.com, 911inquiry.org, http://www.globalresearch.ca, http://communitycurrency.org, 9-11.html and others. Interesting.

The Evie Man

Running through Tampa has an interesting story about someone he calls The Evie Man. Anyone else in Seminole Heights experinece any encounters with The Evie Man? Go to his blog and let him know.

Code Enforcement Board Disposition Agendas

Some Seminole Heights tidbits from the Code Enforcement Board Disposition Agendas
These were people who were cited by code and failed to resolve the issue in a timely manner

August 2005 Meeting
2. CASE #: 05-10491 UPTON BOIN G
166273.0000, FL 33603 TAMPA, FL 33603
CODE SECTION : 13-45 (A)(1) and 13-45 (A)(2)
Board requested that a certified arborist report back
regarding exactly what trees had been cut down.
DISPOSITION: Board found case guilty of removing 2
protected trees and one grand tree and required $91 triple
permit fee, $3,000 fine and planting of 37 - 2 inch caliper
trees or payment of $300 for any tree not planted. D/L
10/26/05 Fine $50 per day if deadline not met. Vote 5/0.

171765.0000, FL 33603 TAMPA, FL 33634-7322
Case heard 04/20/05 D/L 05/25/05. Complied 06/26/05
Violations 19-49 and 19-56. Seeking reduction of $930
DISPOSITION: Board moved to reduce fine to $500. Said fine
must be paid by 09/28/05 or reverts to original amount.

September 2005 Meeting
803 W HENRY AV PO BOX 151783
162295.0000, FL 33604 TAMPA, FL 33684
CODE SECTION : 19-26, 19-27
DISPOSITION: Board found case guilty of failure to obtain
rental certificate and inspection for property. D/L
10/19/05 Fine $25 per day if deadline not met. Vote 5/0
802 W HENRY AV PO BOX 151783
162440.0000, FL 33604 TAMPA, FL 33684
CODE SECTION : 19-26, 19-27
DISPOSITION: Board found case guilty of failure to obtain
rental certificate and inspection for same. D/L 10/19/05
Fine $25 per day if deadline not met. Vote 5/0
118 W THOMAS ST PO BOX 151783
162836.0000, FL 33604 TAMPA, FL 33684
CODE SECTION : 19-26 and 19-27
DISPOSITION: Board found case guilty of failure to obtain
rental certificate and inspection for same. D/L 10/19/05
Fine $25 per day if deadline not met. Vote 5/0


Tuesday January 17, 2006
Seminole Heights Church - Fellowship Hall
6:30 mixer/silent auction - 7:00 meeting

Subject of Meeting

Knowledge and Participation = Ownership.
People who have ownership of their community, help to control the communities' destiny.

We invite you to please attend this next General Membership Meeting

The agenda is all about your neighborhood!
Come find out:
How to get the most from your community and your association!*
Where to find answers to your questions.
What committees do and how you can participate.
What the association plans are for the coming year.
What is going on in the hood.

Meet the B'GOSH President and find out what it is and why you should care!

Meet some of the people from outside the community,
who have gone above and beyond to assist SESH.

This is YOUR Association and YOUR Meeting

Urban Plants

If you can't grow 'em, paint them.

Thanks for painting the buiilding and making it look better. This is great.
4917 Nebraska

What's Wrong With This Picture?

YesterdayDaze moved into Seminole Heights (in CENTRAL Tampa) in February 2004. The South Tampa News is a weekly paper owned by the Tribune's mother company. We in Seminole Heights do not get that paper. Sherry did not know she had won that award of Best of South Tampa - Antique Shop, until it was given to her recently by a Tampa Tribune ad rep. This was given to her when that rep came to discuss an ad proposal. I love the fact that the best Antique Store in South Tampa is not in South Tampa.

Apparently the Tribune is trying to get Seminole Heights businesses to get together for a large ad, under the title of Seminole Heights. This ad would go into the South Tampa section of the Tribune.

However the businesses have said no, because we are not South Tampa. They have said rename the section to something more inclusive and they will give their money to the Tribune.

I urge businesses in Ybor City, Tampa Heights, West Tampa, and East Tampa to do the same. Tell them you would be glad to advertise if South Tampa section were renamed to something more reflective of the area. Since they do not seen to listen to there subscribers, perhaps they will listen to the advertisers.

I think the best name is the Tampa Times, which was an old Tampa paper that the Tribune absorbed years ago. Anyone else have ideas for names?

Starbucks Update 1-14-06

Latest progress of the Starbucks

Saturday, January 14, 2006

The Trilateral Commission

Well, I have heard that the Presidents of the 3 Seminole Heights Civic Associations have banded together to create a council of presidents, to discuss and coordinate dealing issues that affect all of Seminole Heights. More signs of the growing maturity of this neighborhood.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Tampa On Its Way To A Cleaner City - Numbers Are In For 2005

This press release was sent out by the city:

Tampa On Its Way To A Cleaner City - Numbers Are In For 2005

January 13, 2006 - Two of the City of Tampa’s departments charged with cleaning up the city made great strides in 2005. The Code Enforcement department had a record year for new cases opened with over 32,100 – up over 1,900 cases from 2004. Additionally, the Clean City division has had an impressive start since its establishment in July 2005. From July to December, they cleaned 150 miles of main thoroughfares and 118 miles of residential corridors, removing over 454 tons of litter and 840 snipe signs.

The Code Enforcement department was established as a department at the start of the Iorio administration in 2003. The department is responsible for inspections relating to zoning violations, overgrown lots or yards, inoperative vehicles, maintenance of structures, illegal signs and public nuisances.

In July 2005 the Clean City division was created. The division is responsible for reducing litter in Tampa’s residential corridors, major thoroughfares and city-owned lots as well as snipe sign and graffiti removal.

For more information, please contact Code Enforcement Director Curtis Lane at (813) 274-5545 or Clean City Division Manager Jim Pinkney at (813) 931-2143.

I have a lot of hopes with Mr. Pinkney. Let's see what happens.

By the way, I ain't seen no more signs at Kmart. I complained to the City and they told them to be good boys and not to do so any more

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Money Races

Rose Ferlita has raised $145,000 for her County Commission (District 1) race to replace Kathy Castor. She is going to need that and more since she is fighting the entire conservative east Hillsborough County Republican establishment. Ralph Hughes's reputed puppet (Brad Swanson) has raised $45,000. Republican Gary Santti has raised $100.00. despite his appearance at the recent debate, he can't be a serious candidate. Democrat Deborah Cope has raised just over $3,000. The Weekly Planet's Art Critic Mary Mulhern is mulling over a run for this race also.

In other County Commission races, District 3 candidate Kevin White has raised $103,000. Supposedly Chloe Coney is considering a run against him but she is going to be starting off with a serious cash handicap if she does. His announced opponent Ken Anthony has raised $15,000.

In his bid for re-election County Commissioner District 7 Mark Sharpe has raised $65,000 in one filing period versus his opponent Julieaann Goggans who has raised zero dollars. However she just started. Mark raised 116,000 in 2004

The bigtime money raising prize goes to County Commissioner District 5 Jim Norman who has $175,000 versus his opponent Jean Batronie who has rased zip since she entered the race in April 2005. Norman obviously is very afraid of Jean, for him ot raise os much moeny.

By the way the 2004 County Commissioner fundraising king was Bob Buckhorn with $276,000.

Seminole Heights Woman in TGH ICU after accident

According to a Live Journal post by Bekus, referencing a St. Pete Times article, Misty Schroeder of the 1200 block of E Clifton St was seriously injured in an auto accident with a semi-trailer on Tuesday night. Please keep Misty and her partner Tonya in your thoughts and prayers.

addendum: Since the Bekus post is protected, here is the link to the article in the Times.

Don't Fence Me In


Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies above
Don't fence me in
Let me ride through the wide open country that I love
Don't fence me in
Let me be by myself in the evenin' breeze
And listen to the murmur of the cottonwood trees
Send me off forever but I ask you please
Don't fence me in

Just turn me loose, let me straddle my old saddle
Underneath the western skies
On my cayuse, let me wander over yonder
Till I see the mountains rise

I want to ride to the ridge where the West commences
And gaze at the moon till I lose my senses
And I can't look at hobbles and I can't stand fences
Don't fence me in

Oh, give me land, lots of land under starry skies
Don't fence me in
Let me ride through the wide country that I love
Don't fence me in
Let me be by myself in the evenin' breeze
And listen to the murmur of the cottonwood trees
Send me off forever but I ask you please
Don't fence me in

Just turn me loose, let me straddle my old saddle
Underneath the western skies (do do-do, do do do-do-do-do)
On my cayuse, let me wander over yonder
Till I see the mountains rise (ba be ba ba ba)

I want to ride to the ridge where the West commences
And gaze at the moon till I lose my senses
And I can't look at hobbles and I can't stand fences
Don't fence me in, no
Pop, oh don't you fence me in
Bing Crosby
- words and music by Cole Porter
- from the Warner Bros. Picture "Hollywood Canteen"
- lyrics as recorded in Los Angeles July 25, 1944 by The Andrews Sisters
with Bing Crosby and Vic Schoen & His Orchestra

Aaah, yes, just more barbed wire in Seminole Heights.

Holy Cow Batman! It's the Fern Mobile!

I spotted this at the Lights On Tampa. This truck is stenciled with fern leaves. If you blow up the photo on the side of the truck, it seems to be a building stencilled with fern leaves.

Green Shift

There's a little blurb about Greenshift in the TBT* (Tampa Bay Times) featuring a photo of employee Holland King. Go visit and tell him he did a good job holding up those comic books. (Nebraska and Giddens)

"What goes better with comics than guitars? The shop is a combination of vintage musical instruments, comics, rare films and collectibles. The store is so packed with merchandise that some sections are hard to navigate. An extensive amount of back issues are in the back of the store, and many rare issues from the golden and silver age hang on the wall. A different movie usually plays every day on a small TV to complement the vast amounts of classic and hard-to-find movies in stock. Green Shift is a must-see store, even non-comic book fans."

In my opinion, Green Shift is a Seminole Heights cultural icon. Check out the newest paintings on the front of their building and then go in a buy a comic, a guitar, or something. At least read the signs on their front door.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Republicans Gabfest


according to the Tribune
, the first local polical debate has occurred. The Republicans running for county commissions had a debate Tuesday.

Seminole Heights is affected by the race that has Rose Ferlita, Brad Swanson and Gary Santti running.

Of interest is that "The primary's internal politics were evident at the county Republican meeting when Swanson got a special introduction by Commissioner Ken Hagan. He mentioned Commissioner Brian Blair also was on hand to support the former Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce official."

Swanson . . . "ticked off a litany of boilerplate Republican themes such as smaller government and lower taxes until challenged by a member of the audience to provide the "substance" of his vision for Hillsborough"

The ruors are that Swanson is a hack/puppet for east Hillsborough County behind-the-scene king makers Sam Rashid and Ralph Hughes. He certainly will not be a friend of Seminole Heights. "He also spoke in favor of the county's ban on gay pride."

Just say no to Swanson!

Monday, January 09, 2006

Yesterdaze gets some local color. I love it. This is absolutely great! Imagine if more of Seminole Heights were done up like this. The artist is Robert Laslett.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Recent Seminole Heights News Stories

In the Tampa Tribune there is an article about some controversy regarding Lake Roberta. "Lake Roberta - The city turned the lake into a retention pond and is now trying to clean it up. A landscape designer wants the city to turn the lake into a park."

In the St. Pete Times there is an article about "Interior designer Karen Brown gave up her studio, instead adding an office to her home on the Hillsborough River."

There is a little blurb in the St. Pete Times about Stephanie Beckel opening up Tampa Antiquarian Books in Seminole Heights. (It's the third business blurb in thr article)

Rohama Chomick wrote a great letter to the editor to the Tampa Tribune about fireworks.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Seminole Heights goes to Lights On Tampa

Tonight was the opening of Lights On Tampa.

The first exhibit was at the City Hall by Stehpen Knapp.

We then came across the world largest poem.

And it's author, Tampa's Poet Laureate James E. Tokley. In the photo with him is Beverly, Susan and Rohanna.

Next is the exhibit at the National Wall Art Gallery by Wenby Babcox.

Next is at the Cube next to the Beer Can Building by Erwin Redl.

We crossed the bridge and along the way saw the exhibit at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center by Tobey Archer.

We ran into members of the Seminoole Heights Book Group. Ginny, Laura and Virginia.

We wait for the the exhibit at the University of Tampa to start. Created by Jorge Orta.

It begins.

Finally another view of the Perfomring Arts Center. I missed one exhibit at the Tampa Trib/Channel 8 News Center by Chris Jones. It will be as a video in the next posting.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Anti-Prostitution Activities in Seminole Heights - Part 3

This is a follow up to Anti-Prostitution Activities in Seminole Heights - Part 2 and Anti-Prostitution Activities in Seminole Heights - Part 1
For years Seminole Heights residents attempted to get rid of the prostitution activity. The following is a set of articles that appeared in the St. Petersburg Times on the subject. The Tampa Tribune did a more extensive and detailed job on the subject, but you can't read their articles without paying for them. These articles should give you a good flavor as to whats occurred.

This long winded series will end up talking about the various anti-prostitution activities including the Exercise Club, the June 2001 meeting, the Prostitution Task Force, the Neighborhood Watch Patrols, TPD reorganization and how all of this led up to the fact that Seminole Heights is no longer the place to go for prostitution.

20 charged with solicitation; St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: May 27, 1989. pg. 10.B
TAMPA - In the third crackdown in three weeks on prostitution in north Tampa, undercover police officers arrested 20 men early Friday and charged them with solicitation, police said. The arrests bring to 49 the number of people - including one woman and a 14-year-old boy - who have been charged in the anti-prostitution sweeps in the Sulphur Springs-Seminole Heights areas. The latest sweep occurred between 9 p.m. Thursday and 6 a.m. Friday around Robson Street and Nebraska Avenue. Those arrested were charged with solicitation and a variety of other charges, including drug and driver license offenses, police said.

Residents fight crime their own way; DAVID BRACKMAN. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Jun 5, 1989. pg. 1
TAMPA - Rather than rely on an overburdened police department to rid Nebraska Avenue of prostitutes and illegal drugs, homeowners and renters in north Tampa have employed a few tricks of their own to take their streets back from the streetwalkers. "Miss Ridolfi is the spokeswoman for the Citizens of Evelyn City, a neighborhood watch group made up of people living east of Nebraska between Sligh Avenue and the Hillsborough River. Evelyn City comprises the northern portion of Tampa's Seminole Heights neighborhood. Thursday about 75 Evelyn City residents and business owners attended a Neighborhood Watch meeting. Miss Ridolfi said they logged about 30 specific complaints, most of them related to prostitution and drug dealing along Nebraska and its side streets."

100 picket to protest prostitution;SUE CARLTON. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Mar 4, 1990. pg. 1.1
Between Saturday-morning appointments at a Nebraska Avenue hair salon, hairstylist Tom DeForest had about 15 minutes to make his views known.
About 100 people, mostly residents of the Sulphur Springs and Seminole Heights neighborhoods, gathered along several blocks of Nebraska Avenue for several hours Saturday, carrying signs and yelling to motorists. Some brought dogs, some brought children, and some even dragged folding chairs curb-side for a more comfortable protest. Neighbors around Nebraska Avenue say they are tired of living with the notorious reputation Nebraska Avenue has gained as the place for prostitution in Tampa. While they doubt it can be eliminated, they say they do not want it in their back yard.

Residents in southeast Seminole Heights are working to close off 70 alleys. NADINE SMITH. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Dec 13, 1992. pg. 3
The Southeast Seminole Heights Civic Association is circulating petitions to get the city to close off 70 alleys in the neighborhood. Residents complain that the alleys have become convenient hideouts for prostitution, illegal dumping and burglars. If successful, the alleys will be closed, and the property divided between adjacent property owners.

A publicity stunt, not policy EDITORIALS; St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Mar 3, 1997. pg. 10.A
Bob Buckhorn, a Tampa City Council member, wants to seize the cars of people arrested for soliciting prostitutes. The idea is reckless but politically appealing. No wonder the council has toadied along. Buckhorn said the law "allows us to go after the johns . . . and basically, for the first time, shame them." Good luck. Some criminals - and some politicians - aren't easily shamed.

Crime-fighting can go too far: EDITORIALS; St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Aug 22, 1997. pg. 16.A
Tampa needs to use caution to prevent a crackdown on petty crimes from becoming an extralegal roundup. Several well-meaning ideas could curb prostitution and drug sales, and protect businesses from costly nuisance crimes, such as trespass and graffiti. Residents of the urban neighborhoods north of downtown, Tampa Heights and Seminole Heights, are overdue for relief. The attack is two-pronged and modeled after the "broken windows" theory. Using city ordinances and police deployments, Tampa will try to stem petty crimes - the broken window - before whole neighborhoods fall prey to apathy, disrepair and violence. Police commanders will use a computer-mapping program to get a better idea of when and where certain crimes take place. The plan will give residents a larger stake in their own security and reinforce the city's commitment to community policing. That is good. It also will give police far more discretion to detain and search, to judge the limits of tolerable social behavior, to declare parts of Tampa off-limits to certain people and to act independent of central authority. That is troublesome.

A TV program some won't want to see; St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Feb 27, 1998. pg. 3.B Frustrated that tougher laws and more aggressive enforcement haven't stamped out prostitution in Tampa, City Council member Bob Buckhorn proposed a new crime-fighting tool: public shame.

Tampa officials unveil new plans to tackle prostitution; JEFFREY GETTLEMAN. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Mar 27, 1998. pg. 3.B
Go to Nebraska Avenue after dark and a certain business is flourishing - prostitution. It's been part of the neighborhood fabric for years. But on Thursday, fueled by complaints from people who live along the Nebraska corridor, the City Council decided it's time to stamp out streetwalking, or at least to try. Council members and police unveiled at a council meeting Thursday a wide-reaching plan that bolsters prevention efforts and raises penalties for those convicted of solicitation or prostitution.

Prostitution defies community vigils, police action; TAMARA LUSH. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Jan 7, 2002. pg. 3.B
The older neighborhoods around Nebraska and Hillsborough avenues are magnets for prostitutes. But younger and wealthier people are moving in to renovate tired, inexpensive homes. The result is a renewed effort to rid the area of prostitutes. "Nebraska has been a monster ever since Nebraska has been around," said Officer Rick Sementilli, who has worked undercover prostitution stings for three years. Seminole Heights resident Tracy Miller talks to someone who she said is a man dressed as a woman on Nebraska Avenue.; Shows the area along Nebraska Avenue where Tampa police say most of their prostitution arrests are made and includes the number; of prostitution cases for 2000.;

East Tampa crime sweep includes counselors; [LATE TAMPA Edition] TAMARA LUSH. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: May 13, 2003. pg. 6.B
About 50 officers will patrol east Tampa neighborhoods through May 24. Halfway through the initiative, city officials will meet with neighborhood groups to get feedback. [Bennie Holder] intends to permanently beef up police coverage in the area after the sweep. Dan Kane, executive director of Tampa Crossroads, which provides substance abuse counseling and therapy for people who have broken the law, said counselors might be able to break the cycle of addiction and jail. David Banghart, a member of both the Southeast Seminole Heights Neighborhood Watch group and a the Prostitution Task Force, is grateful for the effort. Police Chief Bennie Holder and Mayor [Pam Iorio] announce the two-week sweep in a news conference Monday afternoon.

Teamwork to improve homes; hip site for club; [LATE TAMPA Edition] ERNEST HOOPER. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Sep 30, 2003. pg. 3.B
In Southeast Seminole Heights, a group of neighbors are no longer dreaming. Their civic association's Home Improvement Team actually helps fellow residents get one-day projects done. Every month, about 20 residents draw the name of one team member. The winner provides the materials and the team provides the labor.
Southeast Seminole Heights also has draw attention for its crime prevention efforts. Late night and early morning patrols by neighbors have significantly reduced the level of prostitution and drug dealing in the area. Through Tampa's Greenprinting Initiative, a 10-year project of the Mayor's Beautification Program, the park would undergo a $500,000 makeover similar to the renovation of Hyde Park's Kate Jackson Park.

Moral Courage nominees named; [LATE TAMPA Edition] SHANNON COLAVECCHIO-VAN SICKLER. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Dec 13, 2003. pg. 1.B
Among others, the list of nominees includes strip club owner and constitutional rights activist Joe Redner, and seven Old Seminole Heights neighbors who chased hookers from Nebraska Avenue

Walking the beat EDITORIALS; St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Jan 21, 2004. pg. 12.A
Steve Hogue]'s redeployment plan splits the city into three patrol districts, instead of two. Each district will have a full complement of policing forces, from anti-drug and street crime units to detectives who develop some expertise in their geographic area. In the past, responsibilities bounced around, often making it difficult for police to spot trends in specific areas. Hogue wants the districts to focus on their particular problems. Grant writers will help each district obtain state and federal money to address their individual needs.

A nightly street fight; SHANNON COLAVECCHIO-VAN SICKLER. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Mar 14, 2004. pg. 1.B
[Helen Harmon] keeps an eye out for prostitutes along Nebraska Avenue.; [Sherry Genovar-Simons] looks through mug shots of suspected prostitutes to identify a woman working the street.; A suspected male prostitute walks along Nebraska Avenue.; Problems; with prostitution: Map shows the number of reports of prostitution processed by the Tampa Police Department since January 2003. There is a concentration of prostitution along Nebraska Avenue, in particular the stretch between Hillsborough and; [Sligh] avenues in Seminole Heights.

Prostitution blitz opens TAMPA UNCUFFED: INSIDE DOPE ON COPS & COURTS; SHANNON COLAVECCHIO-VAN SICKLER, CHRISTOPHER GOFFARD. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Apr 1, 2004. pg. 4.B
Orange Motel owner Babubhai J. Patel, 72, and Swann Motel owner Bhailalbhai I. Patel, 66, were charged with renting their rooms out for prostitution, a second-degree misdemeanor. They have since been released from the county jail. Olga Ortiz, a 36-year-old Tampa woman staying at the Haven Motel, was arrested and charged with prostitution, renting a room for prostitution and driving without a valid license. She remains in jail, according to jail records.

Police arrest 11 men in prostitution sting; Edition] St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Apr 27, 2004. pg. 3.B
As promised, Tampa police are targeting the men who solicit prostitutes along Nebraska Avenue in Seminole Heights with as much fervor as they target the prostitutes....

Neighborhood not amused about WLLD's hooker gag; SHERRI DAY. St. Petersburg Times. St. Petersburg, Fla.: Apr 2, 2005. pg. 1.B
The men apparently were not looking for johns, something [Sherry Genovar-Simons] has witnessed on numerous occasions as she patrols with her flashlight attempting to scare away prostitutes. To understand Genovar-Simons' anger, consider that Seminole Heights is ground zero for gentrification in a central Tampa area once plagued by blight, drug dealing and rampant prostitution. Given the station's programming and history of controversial publicity stunts, some residents, including Genovar-Simons, are not sure they want the station's help.