Sunday, January 21, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: Florida Insurance commissioner appointed; What happened to El Niño this year; #TampaBeyWatch; Rays-Cuba game in photos; NFL draft

The third time was the charm Friday as Gov. Rick Scott and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater agreed to hire deputy insurance commissioner David Altmaier to replace Kevin McCarty, the state's powerful insurance regulator who resigned after 13 years at the helm of the Office of Insurance Regulation.

The future of the Museum of Science and Industry is decided: It's moving downtown. The future of its leader is less certain.

As warm waters swirled in the Pacific Ocean last fall, forecasters put Floridians on alert. Then, nothing. What happened to the epic El Niño predicted this year?

When the Tampa Bay Rays and President Barack Obama made their historic trip to Cuba this spring, the Tampa Bay Times sent photographer Will Vragovic to cover the event. The challenge before him? Try to satisfy an international audience with photos focused on sports, politics and travel.

An increasing number of people are renting homes instead of buying them, but a large chunk of them come from a surprising demographic.

There's new competition for grocery delivery services with Amazon Prime Now offering free two-hour delivery in the Tampa Bay area.

Whether you're a fan of the Bucs, Gators, Seminoles or Bulls, you'll want to follow our live coverage of the 2016 NFL draft April 28-30, from the discussions at One Buc Place to the stage at Chicago's Auditorium Theatre. We'll have live news, photos, stories, columns, videos and more, so come check back for the latest updates. April 28 (Round 1, 8 p.m.); April 29 (Rounds 2-3, 7 p.m.); April 30 (Rounds 4-7), noon.

Well, it'll all culminate tonight at Raymond James Stadium. Beyoncé Week on the Soundcheck blog has been leading up to this moment, when you can participate in #TampaBeyWatch on the live blog.

Giving audiences only a few days to process the wonderment of music that is her new album Lemonade, Beyoncé kicked off her Formation World Tour in Miami last night with a gargantuan, career-spanning setlist that saw the live debuts of many of her new tracks.

Now, for some history: In 2000, Destiny's Child stole the show from Christina Aguilera in Tampa. Then, a year later in 2001, Destiny's Child outshone the rest of the MTV's Total Request Live Tour in Tampa.

She is pop culture's superwoman, a force who won't be reckoned, able to do whatever she wishes better than anyone else dares to dream. Except one thing, according to our movie critic Steve Persall. Beyoncé Knowles-Carter can't carry a movie.

On with the tour: For fashion, don't even try to imitate. When you dress like Beyoncé while actively still breathing the same air, you will suffer by comparison. Here are some ideas. You've got the concert ticket, the outfit, the diva attitude. Now, in order to properly usher in the biggest concert of the year on Friday, you need flawless tailgate food Bey would approve of.

The usual knock on TV sketch comedians moving into movies is that hilarious five-minute ideas get stretched to lousy feature length. Not Keanu, a new film with Key and Peele from Comedy Central. The title character is an aww-dorable tabby, introduced while leaping and sliding for its life in slo-mo through a bloody gunpowder ballet. If the action seems familiar, it's supposed to, and Persall gives it a B-.

Here are the top things to do today around Tampa Bay, including MadTV's Bon Qui Qui, the comic alter ego of comic Anjelah Johnson-Reyes; and Dan and Phil, the YouTube stars of BBC radio at Ruth Eckerd Hall. Also, a guide to help plan your weekend.

News at noon is a weekday feature from Check in Monday through Friday for updates and information on the biggest stories of the day.


Hillsborough diver who died in Eagle’s Nest Cave was adventurous but experienced

Davin Brannon was a pilot, a spearfisherman, an avid cave and open-water diver and an experienced all-around adventurer, said those close to him ."I guess you could say he died doing what he loved," his cousin Pam Kirven said. "But I also know he’d n...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Oxfam highlights sharp inequality as Davos elite gather

DAVOS, Switzerland — A CEO from one of the world’s top five global fashion brands has to work for just four days to earn what a garment worker in Bangladesh will earn in an entire lifetime, campaigning group Oxfam International said Monday. In advanc...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Amazon opens cashier-less store in Seattle

SEATTLE — Amazon employees have been testing it, but is the public ready for a cashier-less store? More than a year after it introduced the concept, Amazon is opening its artificial intelligence-powered Amazon Go store today in downtown Seattle. The ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
At second St. Petersburg Women’s March, 5,000 focus on

At second St. Petersburg Women’s March, 5,000 focus on "what we can do"

ST. PETERSBURGNear Mirror Lake, as protesters posed for pictures, hung signs on their dogs and distributed chant scripts just after noon Sunday, Linda Pair and her friend Beth Gavin arrived to march.Asked why she came out, Pair, 72, of Largo put it b...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Add swagger to Lightning’s loss column

Add swagger to Lightning’s loss column

CHICAGO — It didn’t take the sound of a door slamming in the visitor’s dressing room Saturday night to sense this Lightning team is frustrated.Tampa Bay believed it had worked hard against the Wild — at least, harder than it did in Thursday’s letharg...
Updated: 1 hour ago
USF women blow late lead, lose at Wichita State

USF women blow late lead, lose at Wichita State

WICHITA — USF led by eight points in the fourth quarter but went cold, and Wichita State pulled off the upset 64-56 Sunday afternoon in a potentially costly loss for the Bulls.USF (15-5, 5-2 American Athletic Conference) missed 14 of its last 15 fiel...
Updated: 1 hour ago
‘Big Hug’ brings out fun-loving  crowd

‘Big Hug’ brings out fun-loving crowd

GABRIELLA ANGOTTI-JONES | TimesDaniel Evangelista, 17, dressed as a rooster; Knox Johnson, 16, dressed as Stay Puft Marshmallow Man; Rachel Rowland, dressed as a panda; and Luke Evangelista, 15, dressed as Captain America, joke around before comp...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Deputies: 18-year-old speeding on U.S. 19 faces charges of DUI, fleeing scene

PALM HARBOR — A speeding driver on U.S. 19 refused to stop for deputies and took off, later rear-ending a car and injuring three people early Sunday morning, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.A little after 1:30 a.m., Kingzig Montanez...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Factory fire traps in workers, killing at least 17; Kabul siege ends violent 24 hours; more in world news

Factory fire traps in workers, killing at least 17; Kabul siege ends violent 24 hours; more in world news

IndiaFactory fire kills at least 17A fire at an industrial building on the outskirts of New Delhi broke out as workers were stuffing gunpowder into firecrackers, trapping many of them on the factory’s upper floors as it spread, and leaving at least 1...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Up to 1,000 more US troops could be headed to Afghanistan this spring

Up to 1,000 more US troops could be headed to Afghanistan this spring

The U.S. Army is readying plans that could increase the total force in Afghanistan by as many as 1,000 U.S. troops this spring beyond the 14,000 already in the country, senior military officials said.Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has not signed off on...
Updated: 8 hours ago