Sunday, June 24, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: Allegiance runs deep over national anthem; Rays release spring schedule; how to treat your Thanksgiving hosts; and an original cigar factory could soon be a boutique hotel

Passions run hot when it comes to The Star-Spangled Banner, a 202-year-old song that in 2016 is at the epicenter of a national conversation about race, politics and protestation. Bucs receiver Mike Evans found out this week when he declined to stand for the national anthem before a game last Sunday at Raymond James Stadium, an act of protest over Donald Trump's presidential election. Jay Cridlin explains that when it comes to the national anthem, allegiance runs deep.

RAYS RELEASE SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE, TICKET INFO

The Rays released their spring training schedule Friday, with 18 games in Port Charlotte, including a March 8 exhibition against the Colombian World Baseball Classic team, and six in the immediate Tampa Bay area, including the March 31 finale at Clearwater. Check out the full schedule.

SPICES, VODKA AND OTHER LOCAL FOOD GIFT IDEAS FOR YOUR HOLIDAY HOSTS

There are years where you're ironing napkins and polishing the good silver. And there are years when you're hopping in the car, maybe with a casserole sliding around in the trunk. Sometimes it's nice to be a guest and to leave the turkey and stuffing in someone else's capable hands. And to reward the hands in question, here's a lineup of local food gifts to give your host or hostess on Thursday.

ONE OF TAMPA'S ORIGINAL CIGAR FACTORIES COULD SOON BE A BOUTIQUE HOTEL

OCTAVIO JONES | Times

The historic Tampa Cuba Cigar factory once owned by the Balbin Brothers sold this week for $1.4 million. The three-story building is 35,000 square feet and could become a hotel.

They've been turned into offices, schools, restaurants and luxury apartments. And now one of Tampa's original cigar factories could soon be a boutique hotel. The former Balbin Bros. Cigar Factory at 1202 N. Howard Ave. was purchased for $1.4 million this week by a partnership between a Tampa hotelier and a Louisiana-based hospitality company. Though still in the early stages, plans call for a hotel with about 70 rooms that likely will be part of a major chain but with a name reflecting its local heritage, partner Mike Desai said Friday.

TAMPA MAN CHARGED WITH MURDER IN FATAL STABBING OF HIS FATHER

A Tampa man has been charged with second degree murder in the stabbing death of his father, police said. Officers were called to a home at 2608 E. 18th Ave. shortly before 9 p.m. Thursday and found Damon D. Larry, 43, suffering from multiple stab wounds, according to Tampa police. Witnesses told police Larry's son, Damon T. Larry, 23, attacked his father and what appeared to be a fist fight ensued.

METROPOLITAN MINISTRIES HELPS FAMILIES IN NEED DURING ANNUAL HOLIDAY FOOD DRIVE IN TAMPA

DIRK SHADD | Times

Andre Norton, 47, works to load about 18 barrels, each 30 gallons, of donations at the holiday food drive location at WestShore Plaza en route to the Metropolitan Ministries holiday tent in Tampa on Friday, Nov. 18, 2016.

Metropolitan Ministries kicked off its annual holiday drive Friday morning by collecting food donations for families in need in the Tampa Bay area. The Tampa-based nonprofit organization collected thousands of pounds of turkey, along with other seasonal foods, during its food drive at WestShore Plaza in Tampa.

FLORIDA UNEMPLOYMENT RATE RISES SLIGHTLY, JOB CREATION SLOWS DOWN

After being stuck for five months at 4.7 percent, Florida's unemployment rate finally budged in October. But not in the right direction. The jobless rate ticked up a notch to 4.8 percent, though it's still down from 5.1 percent a year ago, according to figures released this morning by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The U.S. unemployment rate was 4.9 percent in October.

WHY GENIUSCENTRAL CAME AND WHY IT LEFT: LESSONS FOR ST. PETERSBURG'S HUNT FOR INNOVATIVE FIRMS

There are critical lessons for St. Petersburg (and any city) in its valiant effort to woo young tech businesses to its downtown and then trying to keep them there, business columnhist Bob Trigaux writes. The tale of what happened to a company called GeniusCentral holds three lessons for a city that is itself in the midst of major growth, a construction boom and still in need of deciding what it wants to be in the future.

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Suspect dead, 2 injured in St. Petersburg home invasion-turned-shooting

Suspect dead, 2 injured in St. Petersburg home invasion-turned-shooting

ST. PETERSBURG ó Three people forced their way into a St. Petersburg house before dawn Sunday before gunfire broke out, killing a suspect and injuring two residents, police said.About 5:30 a.m., the people arrived at a house in Childs Park, on the 41...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tampa police seeking vehicle in hit and run

Tampa police seeking vehicle in hit and run

The Tampa Police Department is seeking a vehicle involved in a hit and run on Sunday afternoon at New Tampa Boulevard and Wood Sage Drive that left a father with life threatening injuries and his young son in serious condition.The vehicle is either a...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Office building demolition at Midtown Tampa site proves tougher than expected

Office building demolition at Midtown Tampa site proves tougher than expected

TAMPA ó Stripped to the girders, the old Bromley office building looked about as substantial as fish bones on a dinner plate.But the 5-story structure proved Sunday it still had a surprising amount of fight left in it.A demolition team had planned to...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Head-on crash kills Pasco teenager, injures three

Head-on crash kills Pasco teenager, injures three

NEW PORT RICHEY ó A 19-year-old driver died in a three-car crash on Moon Lake Road on Saturday afternoon, the Florida Highway Patrol reported.Jillian Faith Hitt, 19 and of New Port Richey, was driving north on the road in a 2008 Hyundai Accent, weari...
Updated: 3 hours ago
President Trumpís trade war threatens the US newspaper industry

President Trumpís trade war threatens the US newspaper industry

STERLING, Ill. - As a longtime editor of small-town newspapers, Jeff Rogers has seen his industry face the collapse of print advertising, the rise of the internet and more. Today, his 18 employees work in a newsroom here that puts out two daily newsp...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Police: St. Petersburg driver falls asleep at wheel after drinking, kills motorcyclist

Police: St. Petersburg driver falls asleep at wheel after drinking, kills motorcyclist

ST. PETERSBURG ó A 22-year-old driver fell asleep at the wheel after drinking and ran a red light, hitting and killing a motorcyclist Saturday night, police said.Just before midnight, Michael P. Majchrowski, 48, was riding a 2016 BMW motorcycle eastb...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Making the case for more drones

Making the case for more drones

BLACKSBURG, Va. - They considered how well everyone slept the night before. They considered the chances a military jet might scream by on a training mission. They considered the farmer in the field.Then they considered some more.After making it throu...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Why a small-town restaurant owner asked Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave - and would do it again

Why a small-town restaurant owner asked Sarah Huckabee Sanders to leave - and would do it again

LEXINGTON, Va. - Stephanie Wilkinson was at home Friday evening - nearly 200 miles from the White House - when the choice presented itself.Her phone rang about 8 p.m. It was the chef at the Red Hen, the tiny farm-to-table restaurant that she co-owned...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays team up to beat Yankees again 4-0

Rays team up to beat Yankees again 4-0

ST. PETERSBURG — With all that's been said, tweeted, ranted and written on these pages and elsewhere about the Rays' odd, unorthodox, weird and some days downright wacky pitching plan, this might be the craziest thing yet:It's working.Like, rea...
Published: 06/23/18
Greg Auman answers your questions about NFLís investigation into Jameis Winston

Greg Auman answers your questions about NFLís investigation into Jameis Winston

There are many unanswered questions and discrepancies about the story of Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston and the March 2016 Uber ride in Arizona that has led to his upcoming three-game suspension for violating the NFL's conduct policy.The Bucs won't ...
Published: 06/23/18