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    Headlines through the years

    A look back at the events, people and places that made North Pinellas the unique place that it is. The information is compiled from past editions of the St. Petersburg Times.

    By CHRISTINE GRAEF

    © St. Petersburg Times, published December 18, 2000


    Dec. 4, 1957

    Beauty contest news sparks disagreement

    CLEARWATER -- Talk of a countywide beauty contest for girls 16 to 21 to publicize the County Fair and Horse Show at Largo ignited dormant differences yesterday between County Commissioner Frank Hoercher and Fair Manager John Henry Logan.

    Hoercher accused Logan of acting with a "free rein," without prior board approval, in retaining Eugene Comer to stage a beauty contest for promoting the fair and Pinellas industries.

    A proposed news release by Comer, quoting Vice Chairman Evan Jenkins, instead of Chairman Charles Fischer, in extolling Pinellas feminine beauty, also drew sharp criticism from Hoercher. Fischer quickly announced his feelings are not hurt by Comer's quoting Jenkins. "I have no particular interest in beauty contests," he smiled.

    Logan won board approval of his plans to induce Pinellas industries to sponsor beauty contestants (for) "Miss Pinellas Industry."

    Although Comer plans a gala beauty contest for single girls, he said they will not appear in bathing suits. "This event will be kept on a high plane. The judges will come from out of county," he said.

    Dec. 14, 1946

    Drivers can turn right on light

    CLEARWATER -- Police Chief John Swift said yesterday that for the remainder of the season right turns against red lights would be allowed within the city limits. He said the speeding of traffic was the reason for the change.

    Dec. 12, 1957

    Clearwater parking plan progresses

    CLEARWATER -- The City Commission demonstrated its determination yesterday to press for more off-street parking.

    Mayor Lewis H. Homer urged printing maps that will show clearly where all public and private parking lots are located and erecting signs pointing toward parking lots as a means of getting people parked as quickly and efficiently as possible, especially in light of pre-Christmas shopping which is fast nearing a peak.

    Mayor Homer said that he had seen the signs in other cities and been told that they were extremely beneficial in cutting down on motorists slowly circling blocks in the congested downtown area, trying to find a parking space.

    The mayor pointed out that the parking lot maps could be made available to merchants for distribution and perhaps could be handled through the Chamber of Commerce.

    The decision to immediately open the new city-leased parking area east of the ACL tracks between Park and Pierce streets was made as a stop-gap measure with holiday shopping on the upswing. Meantime, proposals to lease the lots from the city for private operation will be considered.

    Mayor Homer reported that he surveyed other parking lots in the city yesterday morning and found them all full. He also noted that a seasonal price boost, from 25 to 50 cents daily, had been made in most of the establishments.

    - Compiled by Christine Graef. She can be reached at (727) 445-4229.

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