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Good reads

  1. Tampa Bay: 'the hottest cult horror movie scene in the country'

    Human Interest

    Call them a creatively incestuous bunch of filmmakers, often working on each other's movies, sometimes helping each other to distribute their macabre artistry. Grisly loves company. Especially in Florida.

    Krista Grotte, who often stars in Tampa Bay movies, teases a killer clown during a break in filming.
  2. Armpit hair to dye for (w/video)

    Human Interest

    Destiny Moreno, who is 17, drove to a Sally Beauty Supply near her Seattle home last September with a newly hatched plan. She peppered a grandmotherly employee with questions about hair bleaches, developers and dyes, and the woman asked matter-of-factly if she were coloring her hair. "I was like, 'Oh, I'm dyeing my …

    Destiny Moreno, left, put her armpit hair in a YouTube video. Roxie Hunt is a co-founder of the Free Your Pits website.
  3. Wild ride across Florida: 800 miles, alone on a bike

    Human Interest

    Spindly legs dangle from the frame of my glasses. A black body rappels down a silk filament, itsy-bitsy arachnid feet tickling my nose.

    Graham Brink completed an 800-mile bike race across the full length of Florida. [JOHN PENDYGRAFT   |   Times]
  4. Florida's original water parks: the springs

    Human Interest

    ICHETUCKNEE SPRINGS STATE PARK — In the summer of 1539, the conquistador Hernando de Soto and several hundred men lumbered up the Florida peninsula and stopped by this spring-fed river to rest.

    Ichetucknee Springs State Park near Gainesville is a great spot for tubing, and early starters have a chance at seeing North American river otters at play.
  5. Turn it all off and go outdoors

    Human Interest

    With a job title of digital audience manager, I get paid to be better than most at being digitally connected.

    Appreciating wildlife and the clear, cold, turquoise-tinted water of Manatee Spring.
  6. Famous people, famous places: Reflecting on the best parts of Florida

    Human Interest

    Ernest Hemingway once described Key West as "the best place I've ever been anytime anywhere, flowers, tamarind trees, guava trees, coconut palms. ... Got tight last night on absinthe and did knife tricks." That is a real, unedited quote. Although we might never know the result of that night of absinthe-induced …

    This photo by acclaimed Florida nature photographer Clyde Butcher is "Loxahatchee River State Park - 1991" will be included in the exhibit opening Jan. 8-29 at the Pasco-Hernando State art gallery. The exhibit Visions of Florida: The Photographic Art of Clyde Butcher is part of the Museum of Florida History's Traveling Exhibit (TREX) program. Butcher will will discuss his work in a special presentation, followed by a Q&A and book signing, on Wednesday, January 21, 2015 at 6 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center on the college's West Campus in New Port Richey.
  7. Uncle John's Band hits Chicago for Grateful Dead glory

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — Minutes after midnight, Uncle John's Band closes another sprawling set at Skipper's Smokehouse with the Grateful Dead's U.S. Blues, drawing cheers from the tie-dyed faithful.

    Mike Edwards, co-founder of Uncle John’s Band, rehearses a Grateful Dead tune. The Grateful Dead tribute group will play at an event connected to the Dead’s final shows in Chicago.
  8. Transgender star Esme Russell spends a life learning to love drag

    Human Interest

    TAMPA

    Esme Russell glides through a packed Hamburger Mary's in Ybor City during her second show of Saturday night.

    Esme shops for wigs to use for her performances.
  9. St. Petersburg tattoo artist named one of Rebel Ink's most wanted (w/video)

    Human Interest

    Down a quiet street in St. Petersburg, one of the country's top tattoo artists quietly inks in a chest-sized jewel of a client who traveled all the way from Michigan to get work done by Kristel Oreto.

  10. Twists, turns and colorful characters brought Lightning hockey to Tampa Bay

    Human Interest

    TAMPA

    Good quest stories start at the beginning, so let us untangle all the various narratives about the improbable birth of the Tampa Bay Lightning and begin with the bold desire of one man, a man whose life was defined by hockey, a man who got emotional when he talked about hockey, a man who would let go of his …

    Hockey Hall of Famer Phil Esposito decided in 1990 that he wanted to bring an expansion franchise to Tampa Bay.