Movie and television buff
It's routine for St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster to crack jokes when greeting the public. His fondness for the big screen, cable television and sneakers were on display Friday during a mayoral forum at Franklin Templeton Investments.
When talking about past mayors building Tropicana Field, Foster quoted a line from Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams: "If you build it, they will come."
Moments later, he recited the trademark line from Larry the Cable Guy: "Git-R-Done!" He then used Nike's "Just Do It" slogan when describing his leadership style and assembling a team to lead City Hall.
The Buzz does have one nit with that last reference. Most of the administrators at City Hall have worked there for decades, long before Foster took office in 2010.
As Foster and his challenger, Rick Kriseman, greeted business people before Friday's 8 a.m. forum, one business executive extended his hand to Kriseman, asking: "Who are you?"
"I'm Rick Kriseman," the mayoral candidate said.
The businessman: "Oh, I'm sorry. I'm from Tampa."
Maybe the businessman hasn't seen Kriseman's television commercials touting his campaign.
During a promotion ceremony on Thursday, fire Chief Jim Large touted the great relationship between the city's firefighters and police officers.
"We're cross-training them. They're learning how to use our axes," Large said, referring to the incident last week where a man chased people downtown with an ax before being shot and killed by police. He added: "Unfortunately, we are not eating doughnuts today."
In her second bid for a seat on the City Council, Darden Ricehas smashed the fundraising record set in 2009 by City Council member Steve Kornell.
In truth, Rice accomplished this before the August primary, when her campaign's financial reports showed she'd raised $75,000, besting Kornell's top haul of $71,000.
But the latest numbers, which reflect fundraising from after the primary until Sept. 13, make Kornell's record a distant memory. So far, she has raised a total of $95,370. Her opponent in the District 4 race, Carolyn Fries, has raised nearly $14,000.
Mark Puente can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8459. Follow @ markpuente on Twitter.