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Rowdies offer $10 tickets for service members

Active-duty military members and veterans can purchase $10 tickets for Saturday night’s matchup against the Tampa Bay Rowdies and rival Birmingham Legion FC at Al Lang Stadium. The offer is only valid on gamedays at the stadium box office with valid military identification. The Rowdies are extending the promotion throughout the rest of the regular season. 

Bayfront Hospital opens new lobby with Kahwa Coffee

Orlando Health Bayfront Hospital has opened a new lobby off 7th St. South in St. Petersburg that allows that offers complimentary valet service and a Kahwa Coffee kiosk. Hospital officials also moved patient registration, pre-surgical testing and the blood draw laboratory to the West Lobby to improve the patient experience. Sarah Gilbert, chief operating officer, attributed a higher score in the recent Leapfrog Group assessments to those and similar changes and a continued focus on providing quality patient care. 

Pinellas ranks among state economic leaders

Pinellas County ranked sixth among Florida’s 67 counties in SmartAsset’s annual report on places with the highest increase in gross domestic product (GDP). Business growth increased by 18.68% in Pinellas, and the county received 5.57 new building permits for every 1,000 homes. Miami-Dade County ranked first in the state. 

County opens year-round sandbag location in St. Pete

Pinellas County officials have opened the first year-round, self-service sandbag distribution location at 2855 109th Ave. N. in St. Petersburg. The site, adjacent to the Household Hazardous Waste facility, is open from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday. The self-service site will allow residents to prepare in advance for rainy-day flooding and named storms.

Stamp Out Hunger food drive is Saturday

Saturday (May 11) is the annual National Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. Homeowners can bag healthy, non-perishable food items and place them by their mailbox for their letter carrier to pick up and deliver to St. Pete Free Clinic's Jared S. Hechtkopf Community Food Bank. 

City reschedules Trop redevelopment discussion

St. Petersburg city officials have postponed a May 23 Committee of the Whole meeting to discuss the Tampa Bay Rays stadium redevelopment agreement until sometime in June. The announcement came about six hours into the committee's discussion Thursday of the surrounding Historic Gas Plant District's redevelopment. Officials said the postponement would provide the city council with "ample time" to review "complex" agreements before the meeting.  

Locally shot ‘Rock the Block’ is a hit on HGTV

HGTV reports that 13.6 million viewers tuned in to watch the latest seven episode season of Rock the Block, which was filmed on location in Treasure Island; it is the network's most-watched series so far in 2024. According to Visit St. Pete/Clearwater, the production hired more than 120 local crew and occupied more than 1,300 hotel room nights, resulting in more than $1.3 million in local spend in Treasure Island. 

HCA Florida Healthcare employees complete month of service

HCA Florida Healthcare employees from HCA Florida Largo Hospital, Northside Hospital, Pasadena Hospital and St. Petersburg Hospital completed the company's third annual statewide "We Show Up for Our Communities" month of service in April,  providing more than 120 volunteer hours (from 60 colleagues)to volunteer with Keep Pinellas Beautiful. They also donated 30 lbs. of food to the Lealman and Asian Neighborhood Family Center, 197 lbs. of food to Reach St. Petersburg and over 650 meals to Feeding Tampa Bay's Cereal for Summer Program.

Innovation Center announces climate accelerator startups

The Tampa Bay Innovation Center has selected six early-stage startups for its second Climate Tech Accelerator, sponsored by ARK Invest, Duke Energy and PODS Moving & Storage. Participants will receive training and mentoring in customer discovery, product strategy, investor readiness and market validation. The selected startups include: ·AgWise (St. Pete): An agricultural and data analytics platform. ·Cupper (Bradenton): An eco-friendly coffee pod manufacturer. ·Mudder AI (New Haven, Connecticut): A data analytics startup that tracks weather events and community impacts.  ·Numa Notes (St. Pete): A platform that transcribes medical records. ·Virginica (Tampa): Creates artificial reefs for oyster beds and carbon capture.  ·Zinglan (St. Pete): A platform that monitors unlawful aerial drones. 

Rowdies advance in 10-goal Open Cup thriller

The Tampa Bay Rowdies survived a 6-4 shootout Wednesday night to advance from the Round of 32 of the Lama Hunt U.S. Open Cup at Al Lang Stadium. The Rowdies led Birmingham Legion FC 4-0 late in the match before the visitors mounted a fierce comeback to send the game into extra minutes. Manuel Arteaga scored in the 102nd and 109th minute to seal a Tampa Bay victory. The Rowdies will host FC Dallas in the prestigious tournament’s Round of 16; U.S. Soccer will announce the date and time Thursday afternoon. 

School board seeks tax increase to boost salaries

The Pinellas County School Board unanimously approved a ballot referendum in November that will ask voters to double the local-option property tax that supports schoolteacher salaries and arts programs. The increase to $1 per $1,000 in assessed value would allow district officials to boost each teacher’s pay by $11,000 annually. It would also provide an additional $2,910 annually for support personnel and expand funding for early literacy programs, classroom technology and other designated expenses. 

Animal Care Center debuts at Sunken Gardens

Sunken Gardens, the botanical garden and longtime tourist destination on 4th Street N. in St. Petersburg, has added a state-of-the-art, hurricane wind-proof Animal Care Center. Mayor Ken Welch cut the ribbon Tuesday on the nearly $1 million, climate-controlled facility. 

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