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Morning fire destroys Clearwater home


MORNING fire destroys home; owners away

A Clearwater home at 1283 Lotus Path was a total loss after a fire early Friday morning. Firefighters responded about 3:50 a.m., according to Elizabeth Watts, spokeswoman for Clearwater Public Safety. Owner Benton Murray and his wife were out of town, Watts said, and there was no one inside. It took firefighters 20 minutes to put out the blaze, which caused more than $200,000 in damage. The fire is under investigation by the Clearwater Fire Department and the Office of the State Fire Marshal.

Clothes to Kids seeks volunteers

Clothes to Kids, which provides free clothing to low-income Pinellas County children, is seeking volunteers. The organization offers a variety of volunteer opportunities at its Clearwater store to match almost any schedule and skill level including stockroom, service, administrative, marketing and fundraising. In addition to the many adult volunteer opportunities, the organization offers high school students a chance to volunteer. For information, visit or call (727) 441-5050.


Holiday lights return to gardens

In honor of Tampa Bay hosting the Super Bowl, Pinellas County's Florida Botanical Gardens is turning on its holiday display once again. The display, dubbed the "Garden Light-Up Extravaganza,'' is made up of more than 425,000 lights. About 55,000 visitors saw the display during its first run, which ended Jan. 4. "We're inviting people who are here for the Super Bowl to come and see our gardens and enjoy the lights,'' said Mary Burrell, a spokeswoman for Pinellas County. "I also remember hearing from residents that they wanted to come through again as well, and this is their opportunity, too.'' The Garden Light-Up Extravaganza is ongoing from 6 to 10 p.m. through Feb. 1. The Florida Botanical Gardens is at 12520 Ulmerton Road, inside Pinewood Cultural Park.


Class on boating safety scheduled

The Coast Guard Auxiliary of Tarpon Springs will hold a one-day safe-boating class this month. The course will be offered from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Jan. 31. Cost is $35. Classes are held in the old Pappas restaurant building at the corner of Alternate U.S. 19 and Dodecanese Boulevard. Class size is limited. Register by calling (727) 938-8568.

In Sports

Girls soccer teams from St. Petersburg Catholic, Palm Harbor University, Seminole, Osceola and East Lake compete in district tournament finals. For results, see 6C.

Pinellas deaths

Detailed obituaries are published in Section B.

Morning fire destroys Clearwater home 01/23/09 [Last modified: Friday, January 23, 2009 8:30pm]
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