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  1. Meet the Candyman: Inventor of Jelly Belly sets up shop in Clearwater

    Consumer

    CLEARWATER — Standing in the doorway of a former Krunchtime Health Club, the Candyman spreads his arms wide.

    "I'm the best-kept secret in the world!"

    Candyman David Klein stands with a variety of candies, sodas and other sugary treats, including a substantial inventory of Jelly Belly jelly beans, below, at his Candyman Kitchens location in Clearwater. In 1976, Klein came up with the idea for a new type of flavored jelly bean called Jelly Belly, which included Very Cherry, Tangerine, Lemon, Green Apple, Grape Jelly, Licorice, Root Beer, and Cream Soda. In 1980, Klein and his partner sold their interest in the jelly beans, which are now made with 50 official flavors. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times
  2. 5 things to do under $5: Steampunk Christmas, grilled cheese fest, 'snow' in Ybor

    Events

    1 Steampunk Victorian Christmas: The Pinellas Pioneer Settlement is trying something new this year. There's already an old-timey look thanks to its historic buildings, blacksmith shop and sawmill. This year they are bringing in costumed actors from Wyrd Brothers Productions for a gothic "steampunk" …

    The Pinellas Pioneer Settlement is bringing in costume actors for A Steampunk Victorian Christmas on Saturday.
  3. What's old is new again when it comes to Christmas decorations

    Consumer

    CLEARWATER — Once or twice a year, Teri Bridenback makes the trek from Jacksonville to Robert's Christmas Wonderland in Clearwater to shop and bask in the yuletide spirit.

  4. Ava restaurant to open in The Heights development in Tampa

    Retail

    Ava restaurant will open a second Tampa location next year inside the Heights, a 43-acre redevelopment project around the historic Armature Works building.

    The Heights project in downtown Tampa is under construction and is scheduled to open next year with apartments, market and restaurants.

Photo courtesy Soho Capital
  5. Amazon Go grocery store will take out the checkout

    Retail

    Amazon on Monday revealed that it will open a brick-and-mortar grocery store called Amazon Go, an ambitious bid by the once online-only retailer to gobble up more of Americans' shopping dollars by taking the fight more directly to traditional supermarkets and big-box stores.

    Amazon Go grocery stores allow you to avoid checkout after you check in to a store with your smartphone. [Associated Press]
  6. Four changes shoppers will see as they buy on their phones

    Retail

    NEW YORK — Shoppers buying on their phones this holiday season will see new ways stores are making it easier and faster as they try to lock in sales before people swipe to the next site.

    Mobile shopping accounted for $4.61 billion in sales from Thanksgiving through Monday, according to Adobe Digital Insights. Some 54 percent of visits to retailers' sites and 36 percent of sales for the five-day period came from phones and tablets. [Associated Press]
  7. Long-awaited cupcake ATM serving up sweetness in Hyde Park

    Retail

    TAMPA — For more than six months, the new sweet shop in Hyde Park Village was missing a key ingredient: Its signature cupcake ATM.

    A cupcake ATM is ready for buiness after weeks of delay at Sprinkles  in  Hyde Park Village. The machine can hold as many as 540 cupcakes at a cost of $4.55 apiece. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  8. 5 things to do under $5 Dec. 1-7: Streetcar concert, snow play, Train Weekend

    Events

    1Streetcar Live: This month's segment of concerts performed live on the TECO Line Streetcar System is an evening of hip-hop with Mike Mass, the New York-born MC and producer, with Demi Nova, Asher and Vern Senior. 5-7 p.m. Saturday, Centennial Park, 1800 E Eighth Ave., Tampa. Trolley fare is $2.50 one way, $5 all …

  9. Unused vacation days? Here are some last minute travel ideas

    Florida

    We really stink at vacations. • The average American will end this year with at least three unused vacation days — and half of us will have taken no vacation at all. And even when we do go, too many of us are checking our work email while we are supposed to be relaxing. And don't even get us started on how …

    Pack up the car and take a holiday before the end of the year.
  10. With deals offered early, will shoppers buy on Cyber Monday?

    Retail

    NEW YORK — Cyber Monday may be in danger of losing its online sales title.

    Each year, during the busy holiday shopping weekend that kicks off on Thanksgiving and the Friday after, known as Black Friday, more and more shoppers decide to skip the mayhem in stores and shop online. [Associated Press]