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What a trip

By MARY JANE PARK

© St. Petersburg Times, published January 25, 2001


People on holiday like to take home mementos of their trips, usually things that will fit into carry-on bags or already-stuffed suitcases. Super Bowl XXXV souvenirs (watch out for fakes) and Gasparilla beads abound, and so do beach-themed T-shirts and caps. Here are more tropical treasures.

-- MARY JANE PARK, Times Staff Writer

Some people save decorative ornaments for the Christmas tree; some display them year-round. Whatever your pleasure, they are affordable vacation keepsakes. Sequined fish, $7.95 each. Waterskiing flamingo, $6.95. Dolphin, pelican in Santa caps, $8.95 each. Gingerbread House, The Pier, St. Petersburg.

Reversible handmade bark cloth tote is an ideal carrying case for shells found along the beach, wet swimsuits, magazines and souvenir football programs. Bark cloth bag. $60. Dixiana, St. Petersburg; Tropic Al's, St. Pete Beach.

Handmade shell wreath is large and awkward to carry on a plane, but you can have it shipped home before you leave. Shell wreath. $79.95. The Shell Store, St. Pete Beach.

Warm breezes, cool drinks and Latin tunes may be but a distant memory by the time visitors return home, but a tropical print shirt can help bring back remembrances of good times in the sun. Polyester tropical shirt. $24.99. Wings Beachwear stores.

The tart bite of key limes offsets the sweetness of these luscious cookies that were inspired by a scone shortage at the Tampa Bay Hotel, now the University of Tampa, whose famed minarets decorate the city's skyline. Once the cookies are devoured, stash loose change or trinkets in the collectible tin. 1891 Tampa Bay Hotel's Key Lime Cookies. $15.95. Henry B. Plant Museum and Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa.

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