Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

New Port Richey may allow food sales, recreation rentals in city parks

NEW PORT RICHEY — City parks could soon be bustling with ecotourism opportunities as city leaders consider dropping a ban on commercial activity.

The New Port Richey City Council on Tuesday passed a first reading of an ordinance amendment that would allow vendors to apply for permits to rent kayaks, canoes and bicycles in city parks. The amendment would also allow for the possibility of boat rides, food and drink sales and "other related articles and services," according to parks and recreation director Elaine Smith.

Each permit application would be reviewed by the city on a case-by-case basis. Applicants would have to agree that the "city shares in the revenue produced by the activity or is otherwise compensated," according to the ordinance change.

Council member Jeff Starkey said bringing in vendors will allow patrons of the park to have more access to the city's waterways, which could be a big draw.

"We have a gem in the Cotee River," he said.

Former City Council member Rob Marlowe, who owns a business downtown, urged the board to pass the amendment, saying generating business in city parks is a "great opportunity."

"It's something I have been urging staff to do for ages," Marlowe said.

While the amendment applies to all of the city's 10 parks, it was the prospect of more outdoor activities being offered at Sims Park that had excitement brewing. Allowing vendors could add to efforts by the council to revitalize downtown and, specifically, the historic Hacienda Hotel adjacent to Sims Park.

Last week, the City Council approved spending $24,000 for an architect to draw up a master plan with an eye toward restoring the hotel in conjunction with making improvements and upgrades to amenities at Sims Park, including installing a new playground and adding jogging/walking trails and possibly a nature observation platform.

Council member Chopper Davis said he thinks allowing vendors in the park will make New Port Richey an even more attractive destination.

"I think this is great," he said of the ordinance change.

New Port Richey may allow food sales, recreation rentals in city parks 06/05/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 9:45pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Bucs' Vernon Hargreaves: 'I'm not making any plays'

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Eli Manning gathered his receivers together on the sideline during the Giants' Week 4 game against the Bucs and told them he planned to target the weakest link of the secondary all afternoon.

    Patriots receiver Chris Hogan gets position in front of Bucs cornerback Vernon Hargreaves for a 5-yard touchdown pass in New England’s win on Oct. 5.
  2. Suspect in Maryland office park shooting is apprehended

    Nation

    EDGEWOOD, Md. — A man with a lengthy criminal past who was fired from a job earlier this year for punching a colleague showed up for work at a countertop company on Wednesday and shot five of his co-workers has been arrested, authorities said. Three of them were killed and two critically wounded.

    Harford County, Md., Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler shows a picture of Radee Labeeb Prince, the suspect in the workplace shootings.
  3. Lightning's J.T. Brown to stop anthem protest, focus on community involvement

    Lightning Strikes

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Lightning wing J.T. Brown will no longer raise his first as a protest during the national anthem before games.

    J.T. Brown says he will work more with the Tampa police and groups that serve at-risk young people.
  4. The two Ricks tangle at what may be final debate

    Elections

    ST. PETERSBURG — In what was likely the last mayoral forum before the Nov. 7 election, Mayor Rick Kriseman and former Mayor Rick Baker started out small, discussing neighborhood issues like recycling and neighborhood funding. They ended tangling over familiar subjects: the future of the Tampa Bay Rays, sewage …

    Ex-Mayor Rick Baker, left, and Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, debated familiar topics. The Times’ Adam Smith moderated.
  5. Tampa Chamber of Commerce announces small business winners

    Business

    TAMPA — The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce selected the winners of the 2017 Small Business of the Year Awards at a ceremony Wednesday night at the David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts. More than 600 attendees celebrated the accomplishments of Tampa Bay's small business community.

    Vincent Cassidy, president and CEO of Majesty Title Services, was named Outstanding Small Business Leader of the Year by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.