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Sunshine Skyway fishing pier is a local treasure

Anglers try their luck on the south Sunshine Skyway fishing pier in 2009. They can park their cars within a few feet of their favorite spot, and the bridge is lighted at night.

SCOTT KEELER | Times (2009)

Anglers try their luck on the south Sunshine Skyway fishing pier in 2009. They can park their cars within a few feet of their favorite spot, and the bridge is lighted at night.

Skyway pier

Convenient fishing spot a treasure

Due to some family issues, I relocated to the Tampa Bay area from North Carolina in January. Being a recreational fisherman, I started exploring places to pursue my pastime and soon stumbled upon the Sunshine Skyway fishing pier. This is an amazing resource, and I commend its preservation. The visionaries who years ago thought to recycle a broken bridge would have been quite at home in our time of "green" emphases.

According to NOAA Fisheries, more than 12 million Americans fishing in saltwater generate over $30 billion in economic impact and support nearly 350,000 jobs nationwide. Fishing is the No. 1 participatory recreation in the United States and is enjoyed by people of all ages from practically every walk of life.

Being a senior and having some slight physical limitations, I find the convenience of driving onto the pier, parking and immediately fishing is also meaningful. I hope there will always be devotion to keeping this resource in place and refurbishing and staffing it as needed. It is a jewel.

In my trips to the Skyway pier I have also been delighted to see the number of families fishing together. Years ago in North Carolina, Franc White had a regional television show called Southern Sportsman. He always ended his show with this slogan: "Do yourself a favor. Take a kid fishing." The Skyway pier is a great place to practice Franc's advice.

David Lewis, Pinellas Park

Last call will be an hour later May 7, story

Keeping bars open is about money at safety's expense

Just what we need is a new law extending the time that alcohol can be purchased and served in St. Petersburg.

It is clear that our community leaders are not interested in the safety and well-being of the law-abiding citizen. They are strictly interested in the additional money that will be generated after the Rays' games.

These establishments that serve liquor will now have an extra hour in the middle of the night to get their customers more inebriated so they can attempt to drive home drunk and hurt, maim and kill more innocent people.

Good call, City Council. Let's keep encouraging this type of behavior.

Richard Cardone, St. Petersburg

Big push for later last call May 6

Why is city wasting time on bar hours?

I note that this report quotes Emil Pavone, president of St. Petersburg Downtown Residents Civic Association, as saying, "Police resources are so limited."

The previous day a letter writer in Neighborhood Times (Drug bust? Killers? Nope. Speeders) stated that he observed gangs of police officers lurking in side streets seeking to catch speeders.

Now which is it? Are resources limited or do we have so many officers with little to do but hang around street corners looking for speeders?

The bigger question is why are the City Council members wasting time talking about what time a bar should close?

Who cares? There are many places in the world where the owner decides when he will close the bar, and they do not seem to have a problem.

Seems odd that I can go into Walgreens or CVS and get drugs 24 hours a day, but if I want a drink I have to get one when the City Council allows.

I wonder why the world thinks America is crazy?

David McRobert, St. Petersburg

Drug bust? Killers? Nope. Speeders | May 5, letter

Lead-foot drivers are a huge danger

The person who wrote that the police would better serve the people by going after criminals instead of speeders obviously (I assume) lives in an area that has a low crime rate and he wants to keep it that way.

First, let it be known that I live in an area with an extremely high crime rate. In the past month, circumstances have required me to spend a lot of time driving around the city and county. — Fifth Avenue N, First Avenue N and S, 34th Street N and S, Interstate 275 and the Howard Frankland Bridge especially. People are driving at break-neck speeds, windows up, almost all talking on their cell phones, oblivious to their surroundings.

Of course, I want to see crime addressed; I would like a police presence on every corner. I just have to wonder if this writer has ever witnessed a high-speed accident. The slaughter and mayhem are very unsettling.

Of course, I want to see crime dealt with, but an expensive speeding/reckless driving ticket would take a big bite out of the criminals in their vehicles.

Ed Esielionis, St. Petersburg

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Sunshine Skyway fishing pier is a local treasure 05/11/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 11:42am]
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