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Anticrime DAWG ready to growl in Gulfport

By LORRIE LYKINS
Published August 9, 2006


Drug dealers operating in Gulfport may soon feel the effect of the neighborhood's efforts to turn up the heat on illegal activity.

The Drugs Aren't Welcome in Gulfport program, called "DAWG," officially kicked off Aug. 1 during Gulfport's National Night Out event, which encourages neighborhoods to organize and take action against crime.

Features of the program, which was the idea of Gulfport City Council member Michele King, include an anonymous tip line - 322-BARK 2275 that allows callers to leave recorded messages. DAWG participants also receive anticrime yard signs that property owners can post.

"The response has been pretty good so far, and our hope is to get a (DAWG) sign in every yard," said Gulfport police Chief Curt Willocks.

"The drug dealers aren't necessarily afraid of the cops, but they're afraid of the neighbors who are willing to pick up the phone. The criminals cannot survive if people pick up the phone and make a report."

The Gulfport Police Department is providing the funds for the campaign but will ask the five-member City Council this month for help with funding the program.

Willocks is confident that he won't have any trouble finding the necessary funds.

"I think that right now we probably have five votes for it. Everybody knows that nothing can be done about crime without the public's full participation."

Gulfport

* The Gulfport Public Library, 5501 28th Ave. S, will hold a book discussion tomorrow at 10 a.m. on The Six Questions of Socrates by Christopher Phillips.

* Summer Coffee Talk: The title discussed at the monthly coffee and book discussion will be Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See on Aug. 17. Coffee is served at 9:30 a.m.; the discussion begins at 10 a.m. Copies of the book may be reserved at the reference desk.

St. Pete Beach

* A genealogy workshop will be held at the St. Pete Beach Public Library, 365 73rd Ave., today, Thursday and Friday from 2-4 p.m. Call 363-9238 for registration information.* A community meeting will be held Aug. 28 in the social hall of St. John's Catholic Church, 445 82nd Ave. There will be a discussion with Commissioner Mike Finnerty regarding how to improve the community for St. Pete Beach residents.

Tierra Verde

The Tierra Verde Community Association's board of directors will meet Monday, at 6 p.m. at the Association office, 1275 Pinellas Bayway S (the Mercantile Bank building, second floor). Community association members are welcome. Incorporation and annexation will be discussed.

Treasure Island

The Island Community Theater's board of directors meets Monday at 6:30 p.m. at Gators Cafe & Saloon, 12574 Kingfish Drive, John's Pass.

News for the Beaches Neighborhood Notebook may be e-mailed to SPTimeslistings@yahoo.com or mailed to Lorrie Lykins, P.O. Box 4954, Seminole, FL 33775. Deadline for inclusion in the Wednesday Neighborhood Times is the previous Friday.