© St. Petersburg Times, published September 17, 2000
Some of my college friends (both female and male) were in town for the weekend so we began to look for a setting where we could have fun and enjoy ourselves without the annoyance of loud, smoky, crowded bars.
Having grown up in the Clearwater area, and having attended several Clearwater Phillies games this season, I decided that a baseball game would be the perfect place to spend the evening.
I was excited to find out that the night we were attending, the Clearwater Phillies game was not only the last night of their Fireworks Extravaganza, but it was also an open Hardball Cafe night (any individual can pay $10 and receive admission to the game, along with food and drinks throughout the night). What a great deal! There aren't many occasions anymore where $10 will get you so much in one evening.
Needless to say, we all had a fabulous time. My girlfriends and I chatted about our lives and the guys enjoyed the thrill of a Phillies win. So, my friends and I would like to thank the Clearwater Phillies for an entertaining evening filled with fine baseball, great food and a marvelous fireworks display.
Furthermore, I would like to thank the city of Clearwater on its recent decision to build a brand-new community sports facility. I feel that it is very important to keep any and all forms of entertainment thriving in the community, be it sports and recreational activities or performing and visual arts. The entertainment industry defines a community and gives it character.
People remember a city because of its theaters, museums, golf courses or its sports teams. Yes, this should go down in the books as a win for the Clearwater Phillies, but more importantly, it should be recognized as a victory for the city of Clearwater and the community at large that will benefit from the new facility's vast possibilities.
-- Theresa Morgan, Dunedin
As a resident of Dunedin, a 24-year Realtor in the North Pinellas area and a fan of baseball, I would like to say thank you to Dunedin Commissioner Janet Henderson, Dunedin Mayor Tom Anderson, state Sen. Jack Latvala, and all those who made a contribution to the continuation of a longtime relationship with the Toronto Blue Jays organization.
It has clearly been a long, arduous process, as most negotiating is. I commend the city employees for their efforts and prudent thinking. I think their efforts to compromise and effect a continued partnership with the Jays will be an ongoing asset to Dunedin and the surrounding community.
-- Judith L. Stokes, Dunedin
Once again Clearwater Mayor Brian Aungst has displayed his persistence to lead the city deeper into debt for the next 20 years with his plan to subsidize the Phillies baseball club.
He is once again presenting a project that is incomplete because they do not have all the cost figures to work with. He insists on working with blank checks at the expense of the taxpayers.
If the Phillies don't like it here, let them find some other suckers to subsidize them.
Remember this man next March. He has got to go.
-- Robert L. Smalley, Clearwater
Re: Brits don't have roundabouts mastered, and they can't drive, Sept. 12 letter.
The letter writer's anti-Brit comments just serve to illustrate why roundabouts do not work in Florida. It also shows that the length of time one has been driving is valueless if one learns nothing in that time.
It is an accepted fact that roundabouts do work in other countries just as they do up north. The trouble is with the Florida drivers. U.S. 19 is perfectly adequate and the Clearwater Beach roundabout would certainly work if the drivers were a little more disciplined. But with no one willing to give way (what is known in Europe as "driving courtesy") and most drivers being unwilling to try to make it work, it doesn't stand a chance.
Once again, the fault is not with the roads or the roundabout, the fault is with the drivers. A few more unmarked police cars on the road and tougher penalties would certainly teach a few lessons.
Finally, as another letter writer, Bob Laws, states, impose the "rule of the right" and also introduce proper lane laws. The answer is very simple, really.
-- Dennis Harrison, Clearwater
I have been reading all the letters and stories lately about people not wanting dogs in parks or beaches. There is a very simple solution: a dog park.
All dog owners have to show their support on this matter and then maybe there won't be all these problems of having angry non-pet owners having to complain about dogs running loose in the public parks and beaches.
-- Linda Gavel, Dunedin