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Restaurant tries to ease noise worries

By ANDREW MEACHAM
Published May 25, 2007


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Neighbors fought a Po Boys restaurant for months last year, trying to stop outdoor karaoke music they said was keeping them awake at night.

Now there is a new owner, and some neighbors are hearing the bell for Round Two.

J.F. Kicks, the latest restaurant at 3345 Lithia Pinecrest Road, wants county permission to serve alcohol on its patio.

The request is stirring echoes of window-rattling music that residents could hear a mile away.

The new owner insists that neighbors have nothing to worry about.

Debbie Roberts has delayed a hearing with a land use officer until she can meet with residents.

"It's not so much the alcohol we're worried about, but where it will go from there, " said Carl Stickeler, a past president of the Bloomingdale Ridge neighborhood. "If they just want to sit outside and drink, okay."

Stickeler acknowledged that for the most part, music has not been loud since J.F. Kicks took over the location in February. But since the request to extend alcohol sales from an outside bar to the rest of the patio, worried neighbors have called, wondering what the changes would mean.

Noise complaints in 2006 to Po Boys culminated in a visit from code inspectors, who warned owners that outdoor performances could result in fines for violating a zoning ordinance.

Those days are gone for good, Roberts said. While the restaurant will continue to offer solo musicians, duos and, yes, karaoke inside, J.F. Kicks has dismantled the outdoor stage and will offer only dinner music from the patio and no outside entertainment after 10 p.m.

"The loud music of the past is not something I consider relaxing, " Roberts said.

The restaurant's request goes to a land use hearing officer at 1:30 p.m. June 15 at the County Center, 601 E Kennedy Blvd., Tampa.

Andrew Meacham can be reached at 661-2431 or ameacham@sptimes.com.

[Last modified May 24, 2007, 07:48:16]


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