Monday, December 18, 2017
News Roundup

GaYbor Days celebrations move ahead to Memorial Day weekend

YBOR CITY — It came down to pride — St. Pete Pride.

Organizers of GaYbor Days moved up this year's events to this weekend to avoid a conflict with the St. Pete Pride Promenade on June 30. The Ybor parties start Thursday and run through Monday.

For the past four years, GaYbor Days have been held the weekend before the Fourth of July. St. Pete Pride's parade, now in its 10th year, takes place the last Saturday in June.

The gay celebrations typically complemented each other until this year, when they would have overlapped. Rather than force fans to choose, GaYbor officials switched their party to the Memorial Day weekend.

"We thought it would be too much for two cities," said Carrie West, president of the GaYbor District Coalition, which promotes gay-owned and gay-friendly businesses in Ybor. "The same people would have been going to the same places. We decided to separate them a little bit."

Pushing up GaYbor Days could help Ybor in the long run, he said. People who attend St. Pete Pride often visit Ybor or stay there overnight. Instead of one busy holiday weekend this summer, the area could have two.

St. Pete Pride, the largest gay pride celebration in the state, every year considers changing its date because of the heat, but always decides against it, said executive director Chris Rudisill. The last Saturday in June honors the anniversary of the Stonewall riots in 1969 that launched the gay rights movement.

"We really stick with that history even though it's really hot," he said.

If left on Memorial Day weekend in the future, GaYbor Days could become an annual kickoff for gay events in the area, followed by Gay Days in Orlando, held this year May 29 to June 4.

"It might actually end up being a great thing," Rudisill said. "There's not a lot going on during Memorial Day. We generally don't have a lot of events that week."

Don Barco, owner of King Corona Cigars on Ybor's Seventh Avenue, said he expects Memorial Day weekend to be just as good as the Fourth of July, and probably a lot cooler. Before GaYbor Days started in 2008, he used to close on July 4.

"I'm not concerned. Business is going pretty well for us in Ybor and I'm seeing a different energy here and it's really positive," he said.

Comments
Police: Woman killed in Clearwater drive-by shooting while daughter, 10, in back seat

Police: Woman killed in Clearwater drive-by shooting while daughter, 10, in back seat

CLEARWATER — A Palm Harbor woman was killed in a drive-by shooting while riding with her husband and 10-year-old daughter in a Nissan Sentra late Sunday, police said.Elizabeth Rosado, 30, was in the front passenger seat of the sedan, which was headed...
Updated: 30 minutes ago
Florida gas prices back to pre-Hurricane Harvey levels

Florida gas prices back to pre-Hurricane Harvey levels

Just in time for one of the busiest travel periods of the year, gas prices across Florida are back down to pre-Hurricane Harvey levels. Tampa Bay gas hit $2.30 per gallon today, while state prices averaged $2.37 per gallon, according to AAA, The Auto...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tampa flights affected as Atlanta airport outage creates holiday chaos

Tampa flights affected as Atlanta airport outage creates holiday chaos

ATLANTA — While power has been restored to the world’s busiest airport, the travel woes will linger for days.Thousands of people were stranded Monday morning at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, where more than 1,000 flights were gro...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Portion of Lutz Lake Fern Road closed after crash involving motorcycle

TAMPA — A portion of Lutz Lake Fern Road is closed in northwest Hillsborough County following a crash involving a motorcycleHillsborough County deputies say the roadway is expected to be closed between Sunlake Boulevard and Cypress Green Drive for th...
Updated: 1 hour ago
St. Pete man and dog were constant companions, in life and now in death

St. Pete man and dog were constant companions, in life and now in death

ST. PETERSBURG -- For more than a decade, Gerald Rittinger’s dog kept him alive.The Air Force veteran died on Dec. 3 at age 77. He is survived by his wife, Jeanne, who said she would have lost him 14 years earlier if not for their yellow Labrador, Ze...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Advocates push orca breeding law as SeaWorld’s policy appears murky

Advocates push orca breeding law as SeaWorld’s policy appears murky

The announcement was rolled out to the world as a pledge. A promise.In March 2016 SeaWorld declared it would end killer whale breeding, making the orcas in its care in the United States and abroad its last generation to live in captivity.Later that y...
Updated: 2 hours ago
The government admits it studies UFOs. So about those Area 51 conspiracy theories.

The government admits it studies UFOs. So about those Area 51 conspiracy theories.

For decades, Americans were told that Area 51 didn’t really exist and that the U.S. government had no official interest in aliens or UFOs. Statements to the contrary, official-sounding people cautioned, were probably the musings of crackpots in tinfo...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Rick and Tom podcast: Will Jon Gruden be the Bucs’ coach next year?

Rick and Tom podcast: Will Jon Gruden be the Bucs’ coach next year?

Jon Gruden will be inducted into the Bucs Ring of Honor tonight, but could it be more than just that as the Glazers may be looking for a new head coach come January? In their latest podcast, Rick Stroud and Tom Jones discuss whether Gruden would coac...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Missing Child Alert canceled for Homestead boy, 13

A Florida Missing Child Alert has been canceled for a 13-year-old Homestead boy.According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, John Noble-Sinclair had last seen Sunday in the area of 300 block of Southwest 4th Avenue.The case has been resolv...
Updated: 3 hours ago
LeBron wears one black shoe and one white shoe, speaks about Trump

LeBron wears one black shoe and one white shoe, speaks about Trump

WASHINGTON — LeBron James made a statement during an NBA game with his shoes — one black, one white, with the word "equality" in capital gold letters on the back of each.Then, after the game, James made a statement about President Donald Trump, sayin...
Updated: 3 hours ago