Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Beach events cause stir in Treasure Island

Treasure Island commissioners and businesses are weighing the balance of events held on the beach.

Times (2011)

Treasure Island commissioners and businesses are weighing the balance of events held on the beach.

TREASURE ISLAND — Where do you draw the line in deciding how many public events on the beach is enough?

It is a question city commissioners grappled with as three hotel owners clashed with Rotary Club members last week over the right to hold the club's annual "Greatest Show on Surf" on the city's beachfront.

Tyler Cathey, a lawyer with Englander Fischer representing the Thunderbird Beach Resort, the Windjammer Resort and Page Terrace Beachfront Motel, tried to persuade commissioners to postpone a decision on allowing the event next year.

"The idea is good but it is more complicated. We want time to discuss it," he said. Cathey said the hotels have lost money every year during the four-day festival when the beach is filled with fair rides and cars.

"People didn't pay to have the beach renourished to turn it into a parking lot," Cathey said.

Although two commissioners had reservations about allowing the event, the commission approved a resolution in a 4-1 vote to allow the Gulf Beaches Rotary Club to hold its carnival March 13-16.

"Many years ago businesses said the city didn't do enough to bring more events here," Commissioner Phil Collins said. "It seems it's damned if you do and damned if you don't. People say don't do it in my back yard. Well, this (the beach) is everyone's back yard."

Collins said past events have not caused any damage from vehicles parked or operating on the beach.

Mayor Bob Minning and Commissioner Carol Coward, who identified themselves as Rotarians, supported the event.

The city allows 11 events a year to be held on the beachfront, which is about 25 days out of the year, Minning pointed out. "I don't think that is out of bounds or out of whack."

Coward said she was concerned about the "long-term ramifications" of stopping beach parking and events.

"Do we want a beach that is pristine but we don't want anybody doing anything to it?" she asked.

But Commissioner Alan Bildz said he opposed the carnival because it is harming local business owners.

"We are putting the hotels effectively out of business," he said and voted against the measure.

Commissioner Tim Ramsberger said he is in favor of special events but not parking on the beach.

"But we have no alternative," Ramsberger said, referring to the lack of parking in the city.

A number of Rotary members and others spoke in favor of the event they said drew 12,000 attendees this year. They said money made at the carnival is given back to the community in the form of college scholarships and in other ways. They argued the beach should be for everyone's enjoyment.

One business operator, Phyllis McMillan, general manager of the Treasure Bay Hotel and Marina, said the city should continue allowing events on the beach because it boosts business.

"These events are paramount to our success," she said.

Beach events cause stir in Treasure Island 07/18/13 [Last modified: Friday, July 19, 2013 11:19am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. A trip down memory lane of Bucs' preseason expectations


    With HBO's Hard Knocks in town and the Bucs opening training camp Friday with their highest expectations in a decade, here's a look back at Tampa Bay's preseason expectations since their last playoff appearance in 2007 — and the results.


    Jameis Winston and running back Peyton Barber celebrate a touchdown last season against the 49ers. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  2. Boy Scouts apologize over Trump's remarks at jamboree


    Facing an angry backlash from parents and former members, the chief executive of the Boy Scouts of America apologized on Thursday for political remarks made by President Donald Trump at the organization's national jamboree this week, during which the commander-in-chief crowed over his election victory, attacked the news …

    President DonaldTrump, front left, gestures as former boys scouts, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, left, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, watch at the 2017 National Boy Scout Jamboree at the Summit in Glen Jean, W.Va. Boy Scouts president Randall Stephenson told the Associated Press on Wednesday, July 26, in his first public comments on the furor over President Donald Trump's speech on Monday that he'd be "disingenuous" if he suggested he was surprised by the Republican president's comments. [Associated Press]
  3. Drones restrictions coming at Tampa Bay area airports


    Starting Sept. 1, Tampa International Airport officials will be enforcing new height restrictions for drones and other unmanned aircraft systems, according to a press release.

    In this February 2017 file photo, a drone flies in Hanworth Park in west London. Starting Sept. 1, Tampa International Airport officials will be enforcing new height restrictions for drones and other unmanned aircraft systems,
[John Stillwell/PA via AP, File]
  4. Hit-run driver who refused to leave van threatened to shoot, Hillsborough deputies say

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — Eddie Carly Colon Soto peeked his head out the broken side window of his van as a SWAT team closed in.

    The driver of this van tried to flee the scene of a crash in north Tampa Thursday morning until he could travel no farther, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said. Then he refused to leave the van and threatened sheriff's deputies, they said. [TONY MARRERO   |   Times]
  5. Get the latest Tampa Bay Buccaneers news delivered daily to your email inbox


    They narrowly missed the playoffs by thismuch.

    Bucs wide receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrates with quarterback Jameis Winston (3) after they connected for a touchdown during a win over the Seattle Seahawks in November in Tampa. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]