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Neighborhood notebook

Pledge of Allegiance writer's home to be noted

By RON MATUS and SUSAN THURSTON
© St. Petersburg Times
published February 21, 2003

BAYSHORE BEAUTIFUL -- Next Friday, the city will honor the man who wrote the Pledge of Allegiance.

Francis Bellamy, a New York native who wrote the pledge in 1892, was a Tampa resident between 1924 and his death in 1931.

The city discovered the Bellamy connection in 2001, during a cultural resources survey of the Bayshore area. Mayor Dick Greco will dedicate a plaque at Bellamy's former residence, 2926 Wallcraft Ave.

Bellamy was a Baptist preacher, socialist and educator. The original pledge did not contain the words "under God," which were added by Congress in 1954.

The city's plaque will include the original words and will hang in the patio of Bellamy's former home, now owned by Richard and Beth Hornstrom.

The ceremony begins at 11 a.m. The public is invited.

Storage doesn't go with entertainment, city rules

CHANNEL DISTRICT -- Looking for space to store that extra couch or boxes of business files?

Don't look to the Channel District.

The City Council last week turned down a request to open a self-storage business across from the St. Pete Times Forum, next to Newk's Cafe.

Nicholas Jodhan, a developer from Sarasota, has proposed building a 600-unit, six-story storage facility on Channelside Drive. He planned to rent out half of the first floor to a restaurant with outdoor seating.

Neighboring business owners said a warehouse business didn't belong so close to Tampa's top entertainment venues. "You can make the building pretty but you can't make the use pretty," said Stephen Michelini, who represented Newk's.

Council members agreed the use was incompatible with the area and denied the petition Feb. 14.

Residents get their say in Gandy Boulevard plans

GANDY -- The Tampa-Hillsborough County Expressway Authority will meet with residents on Thursday to talk about plans for Gandy Boulevard.

The authority has proposed linking the Lee Roy Selmon Crosstown Expressway with the Gandy Bridge along an elevated highway over the existing Gandy Boulevard.

Residents have said they oppose the idea but want to discuss it with the authority, which operates the Crosstown. Last year, they successfully persuaded the state to shelve a previous proposal for a Gandy Connector that runs through local neighborhoods.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. at the Gandy Civic Association building, 4207 W Oklahoma Ave. Residents also plan to present their own proposal.

City adds its support for kids' Kaleidoscope Fest

INTERBAY -- Pieces continue to fall into place for the upcoming Kaleidoscope Festival.

City officials last week agreed to sponsor the April 5 event, which will showcase the artistic talents of children throughout Hillsborough County.

"There's nothing like this happening in Tampa," said Robert Rowen, owner of Nuance Galleries and a festival organizer.

The event is expected to draw families countywide to Robinson High School and Bobby Hicks Park.

Children will not only display their work, but create it on the spot -- in drum circles, watercolor tents and other creative activities.

For information, call Rowen at 875-0511.

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