Tuesday, December 12, 2017
News Roundup

Your DayStarter: High temps flirt with 80, St. Pete considers civil citations for pot, and Mindi Abair brings her jazz sax home

Unseasonably warm again today, with highs flirting with 80, according to WTSP 10Weather. A mix of clouds and sun.

• St. Petersburg City Council members will discuss a civil citation program similar to Miami's in which people found with pot would pay a fine instead of going to jail. Council members won't vote during today's committee meeting, which starts at 9:15 a.m. at City Hall. But the extra deliberation could ensure this idea won't be half-baked.

• Mindi Abair, the Pinellas jazz scene's local girl made good, performs with Peter White and Rick Braun at Clearwater's Capitol Theatre tonight. The sax player's 2003 single Lucy's became a huge genre hit. Several albums went to No. 1 on the jazz charts. Pop music critic Jay Cridlin talked to Abair about coming home to play — and that time she met Buddy Guy.

Time to plan your weekend. There are loads of holiday parades and shows, a Real Housewife hosting a fashion show and a rat pack of local artists paying tribute to Ol' Blue Eyes for Sinatra's 100th birthday. Check out our staff's top weekend picks.

• In the lead-up to the Dec. 18 release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, film critic Steve Persall asks whether the merchandise — from coffee creamer to eye makeup — is overshadowing the movie. Also: The movies' fans debate everything. (Did Han Solo shoot first? Are ewoks cute or vicious?) But did you realize there's even a debate about the best order for Star Wars movie viewing?

• After a three-game west coast road trip, the Lightning returns home tonight to face Ottawa at 7:30. Get ready for the game this afternoon with beat writer Joe Smith's Lightning Strikes podcast at tampabay.com/lightning. Phil Esposito talks about the 25th anniversary of when the franchise was awarded. Then follow tonight's action on Twitter with @TBTimes_JSmith.

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