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South & Central Tampa

  1. Sunday Conversation: She turned her bout with domestic violence into a triumph

    Human Interest

    Jill Assalti once succeeded as a film and television actor before moving on to a career in medical sales. She thrived in corporate America, earning honors as top salesperson, but she operated in that world with a missing ingredient. "I missed the artist in me," Assalti said.

    Jill Assalti ( is a motivational speaker who will deliver the keynote address at the Spring’s annual Gift of Peace Luncheon on Wednesday (Oct. 26).
  2. Hillsborough Democrats boost mail voting over past years


    Like Democrats statewide, Hillsborough County Democrats are outpacing their past performance in absentee or mail voting.

  3. Brandies: Use your garden to combat mosquitoes

    Home and Garden

    Willow LaMonte of Herbal Delight Gardens in Valrico has been a good friend of mine since I met her many years ago.

    Pinecone gingers will soon go dormant, but they come back in the spring. They start blooming around July 4 and can last until New Year’s Eve, weather permitting.
  4. Genealogists must go beyond the gifts

    Human Interest

    Never look a gift horse in the mouth.

    That's an old proverb familiar to most of us. It's telling us to be grateful for gifts and not to question them. But that proverb has no place in genealogy. We don't look just at the mouth of the horse, we look at the whole body from every conceivable angle. We even dissect …

  5. Amy Scherzer's Diary: Weekly Wrap-Up of the Tampa Social Scene

    Human Interest

    14th annual Tuxes & Tails

    Mewing, pawing and panting, guests and pets sniffed out Tuxes & Tails, a mastiff-size gala for the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. Saturday's boisterous crowd of 1,000-plus filled the Tampa Convention Center with an Arabian Nights dinner and parade of adoptables resulting in …

    AMY SCHERZER | Times photo Aladdin holds an puppy seeking a home at Tuxes & Tails on Oct. 22 at the Tampa Convention Center.
  6. Buddy Baseball celebrates milestone with grateful parents, joyful pariticipants

    Human Interest

    TEMPLE TERRACE — Several years ago, Puerto Rico natives Andy Reyes and his wife, Sheila Robles, moved to Florida to make a better life for their son, Andres Reyes, who, as a result of his premature birth, is blind and has autism spectrum disorder.

  7. Brandon's St. Andrew's United Methodist to celebrate 50th anniversary


    BRANDON — On May 1, 1966, 22 people gathered for the first meeting of St. Andrew's United Methodist Church in a home on Bryant Road.

  8. World of Beer location opens on a whole new level


    The World of Beer opening in Avion Park, near the Tampa International Airport, International Plaza and Bay Street and Westshore Plaza has a new look different from its predecessors.

  9. Botched executions argue for restrictions on Florida's death penalty


    Florida has sent a lot of despicable people to the state's execution chamber. Men like Ted Bundy, Danny Rolling, and Oscar Ray Bolin made the world a little brighter by their forced departures from this planet.

    Nearly 400 people occupy death row at the Florida State Pris?on in Starke. Since 1979, when John Spenkelink was elec?trocuted, the state has executed 90 men and two women.
  10. 'Ignored' millennials stake a claim on Tampa Bay community's political future


    TAMPA — Millennials, the young and youngish, are much more than college students living on campus or with their parents.

    A group of about 50 self-described millenials with an interest in politics got together Sunday, Oct. 9, at the Aloft Hotel in Tampa for a panel discussion on issues of importance to them. After their two-hour meeting, they gathered around to watch, cheer and groan at the night’s televised presidential debate.
  11. Ybor exhibit showcases Tampa-Cuba baseball connection dating to 1880s

    Human Interest

    YBOR CITY — The Tampa Bay Rays made baseball history in March when they took on the Cuban national team before a Havana crowd that included Cuban leader Raul Castro and President Barack Obama.

    In the 1940s and 1950s, the Tampa Smokers baseball team regularly took on the Havana Cubanos.
  12. Success of Pig Jig fundraiser overwhelms kidney patient who inspired it


    TAMPA — Each year Will Wellman attends the Pig Jig in downtown Tampa, he climbs to one of the highest points of Curtis Hixon Park and comes close to tears as he admires the size of the crowd.

    Friends of Will Wellman, who has a rare kidney disease called focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, launched the first Pig Jig as a backyard barbecue. Now, the event draws crowds each year to Curtis Hixon Park in downtown Tampa.
  13. Sunday Conversation: Little Greek Fresh Grill president Nick Vojnovic


    During his 15 years as president of the Beef 'O' Brady's chain, Nick Vojnovic recalls, there was a fundraiser at the Valrico corporate store for a child battling leukemia. The event included a "Be The Match" bone marrow registry drive and Vojnovic gladly went through the process of signing up, placing a cotton swab in …

    Little Greek Fresh Grill President Nick Vojnovic was diagnosed with primary myelofibrosis, a life threatening condition that requires a bone marrow transplant. One match was found on the “Be the Match” donor registry.
  14. State House candidate Toledo vague on Trump, but spokeswoman slams him


    Last weekend, Tampa Republican state House candidate Jackie Toledo, like many Republicans, issued a statement condemning sexist remarks by Donald Trump but stopping short of saying she opposes him.

    Jackie Toledo, Republican candidate for Florida House District 60, had nothing to say about whether her spokeswoman should have trashed Donald Trump on Twitter. [Courtesy of Jackie Toledo]
  15. To know the candidate, know the associates


    When we vote for a candidate, we select more than the man or woman whose carefully enhanced or debased image appears on the television commercials or the cardboard flyers that come in the mail. We are showing our support for a whole posse of people — power brokers who approach and are approached before hats are …