Tuesday, January 23, 2018
News Roundup

The Daystarter: Win has Bucs fans talking playoffs; MOSI's financial woes; SolarCity targets residential neighborhoods; and chefs put their spin on your holiday recipes

• Fog may blanket some areas this morning. Otherwise, look for increasing clouds with a chance of a few scattered showers or thunderstorms by the afternoon, according to 10Weather WTSP. Expect a high of 83 and a low of 69. There's a good chance for rain Tuesday and chilly weather later in the week.

10News WTSP

The latest 7-day forecast

10News WTSP

Feels-like temperatures around the Tampa Bay area

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• Not only did the Bucs win their fourth straight game Sunday, but nearly everything else across the NFL went their way, giving an additional boost to their playoff chances with four games remaining. In fact, if the playoffs started today, Tampa Bay would be in the playoffs. Catch all of the Times' coverage of the 28-21 victory at San Diego at our Bucs page.

• For the Museum of Science and Industry, 2016 was a year of dueling realities. One was of an institution struggling to make ends meet. Ticket sales dropped 20 percent last year, donations fell well short of annual goals and the museum, known as MOSI, finished its fiscal year with a $1.3 million deficit, according to financial reports obtained by the Tampa Bay Times. While the museum's continuing money woes don't appear to be threatening its prospects for a move, some officials in Hillsborough County — which owns MOSI's building and supports the museum financially — are growing concerned.

• SolarCity, the largest U.S. solar panel installer, is moving into Florida's residential market — emboldened by the state's voters rejection last month of a utility-backed ballot measure that critics said would make going solar more expensive.

[CHERIE DIEZ | Times]

Cossack's Delight mushroom dish, made by Sue Conrad of North Redington Beach.

• More than ever, we need something comforting. And what better to soothe our anxieties than butter, sugar and the classic holiday recipes that conjure up sweet memories? We asked readers to send us their favorite recipes, and they responded. And for an added twist, some local chefs put their spin on the readers' recipes.

• We expect to get a first look inside the new Bryan Glazer Family Jewish Community Center this morning in Tampa. That's the new name for the historic Fort Homer Hesterly Armory, which has gotten a $30 million makeover. An official opening is scheduled for Thursday.

• Natasha Richards, a Clearwater-based performer who won dozens of titles in local and national drag pageants, died Friday at age 44. She used her commanding presence to raise money for charities and was the go-to person for gay pride celebrations, said close friend Gregory Brady. Read more about Richards and her extraordinary life and talent.

• The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it won't grant an easement for the Dakota Access oil pipeline in southern North Dakota, handing a victory to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and its supporters, who argued the project would threaten a water source and cultural sites.

• The tattered Pearl Harbor survivor looks every bit of 78, with weathered skin, rusty bones and the faded "U.S. Navy" emblem the old bird got before the war. Gray from age and years in the service, the veteran of Dec. 7 sits with other World War II antiques, weary and in need of attention. But with the 75th anniversary of the 1941 attack next week, and commemorations scheduled in Hawaii and around the country, this survivor, like most who were there that day, has a story.

• Healthy kids perform better academically, Ernest Hooper writes. The connection between reading, writing and recess are evident. As the Legislature approaches the demand that students get more play time, he hopes they don't play around with letting recess substitute for physical education. You need both.

• In case you missed it: St. Petersburg professional Nikita Hill started the "Let's Talk About It" program to provide young girls with mentors and role models from the ranks of young professional women. Hill said she was inspired when she noticed her daughter's peers were unhappy with their lives and how they felt about themselves. Read Times staff writer Sara DiNatale's story about the new program.

• Major League Baseball's winter meetings are under way, and the Tampa Bay Rays could be looking to trade some of their pitching depth.

• An enchanting holiday village set in an African-themed theme park doesn't seem like it would make much sense. But Busch Gardens' Christmas Town is simply stunning. Meanwhile, after his successful heart enlargement, the Grinch is the king of Christmas around Universal Orlando's Islands of Adventure. Chelsea Tatham tells us what to expect.

• Plan some fun for your week! Here are the top things to do this week in Tampa Bay, including Christmas shows, boat parades and Adam Sandler bringing his comedy buddies to town.

• We had hundreds of comments on our Facebook page about this hipster Nativity scene with a selfie-taking Joseph in a man-bun. It's $130 and selling fast.

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Florida may hand out school vouchers to bullied students

Florida may hand out school vouchers to bullied students

TALLAHASSEE — Florida students who get bullied may get taxpayer help to attend a private school.A Senate panel on Monday voted for a bill that would allow students who are victims of bullying, physical attack, robbery and other types of violenc...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Del Toro’s ‘Shape of Water’ lands a leading 13 Oscar nominations

Del Toro’s ‘Shape of Water’ lands a leading 13 Oscar nominations

NEW YORK — Guillermo del Toro’s lavish monster romance "The Shape of Water" fished out a leading 13 nominations, Greta Gerwig became just the fifth woman nominated for best director and "Mudbound" cinematographer Rachel Morrison made history as the f...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Truck carrying frozen chickens catches fire on I-75 in Brandon

Southbound lanes on Interstate 75 were closed in Brandon early Tuesday morning after a semi-trailer carrying frozen chickens caught fire.According to the Florida Highway Patrol, 52-year-old Brian Keith Jester, of Venice, was driving southbound near S...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Five Hernando County educators nominated for LifeChanger of the Year Awards

Hernando County Public Schools has five educators in the running for prizes ranging from $3,000 to $10,000 in the 2017-2018 national LifeChanger of the Year awards. The program will give out 17 awards.Travis Bruns and Doug Poteet of Pine Grove Elemen...
Updated: 2 hours ago
MacDill crews shift from Islamic State battle to join winter fight against Taliban

MacDill crews shift from Islamic State battle to join winter fight against Taliban

Now that the fight against the largely defeated Islamic State is winding down, the U.S. Air Force is turning its efforts toward the Taliban and moving aircraft and crews to Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.Crews and a KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refue...
Updated: 2 hours ago

Alaska hit by 7.9 earthquake; tsunami warning canceled

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A 7.9 magnitude earthquake struck off Alaska’s Kodiak Island early Tuesday, prompting a tsunami warning for a large swath of the state’s coast.Officials at the National Tsunami Center canceled the warning after a few tense hours a...
Updated: 2 hours ago
More teacher protests and another charter school approval expected at the Hillsborough County School Board meeting

More teacher protests and another charter school approval expected at the Hillsborough County School Board meeting

TAMPA — This will seem familiar: Teachers are mobilizing to protest outside Tuesday’s Hillsborough County School Board meeting about their frozen pay rates.And this too: A vote is expected on a new charter school.Florida Connections Academy is a virt...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Naomi Parker Fraley, the real Rosie the Riveter, dies at 96

Naomi Parker Fraley, the real Rosie the Riveter, dies at 96

Unsung for seven decades, the real Rosie the Riveter was a California waitress named Naomi Parker Fraley.Over the years, a welter of American women have been identified as the model for Rosie, the war worker of 1940s popular culture who became a femi...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Bill Cosby jokes in 1st show since 2015 he ‘used to be’ comedian

Bill Cosby jokes in 1st show since 2015 he ‘used to be’ comedian

PHILADELPHIA — Bill Cosby performed in public for the first time since a sex abuse scandal embroiled him in 2015, joking that he "used to be a comedian" and playing with a jazz band in his hometown as a retrial looms in his criminal sexual assault ca...
Updated: 3 hours ago
The Daystarter: Seminole Heights suspect could face death penalty; soggy commute across Tampa Bay; Oscar nominations released today; Lightning shut out Blackhawks

The Daystarter: Seminole Heights suspect could face death penalty; soggy commute across Tampa Bay; Oscar nominations released today; Lightning shut out Blackhawks

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.• Those Monday evening showers could linger to saturate Tuesday morning’s commute, according to 10Weather WTSP. They’ll move out by the afternoon as a cool — not quite a cold —...
Updated: 4 hours ago