A fund for Phoebe, the dog that survived being shot twice and buried alive up to her neck at a vacant home east of Tampa, has been set up to pay for her medical care. Any funds collected will also be used to offer a reward for information about the person who shot Phoebe, Hillsborough County Animal Services spokeswoman Marti Ryan said Thursday. Phoebe, a 2-year-old pit bull mix, was found Oct. 29 at 3221 Deerfield Drive in the Clair-Mel area. Donations to the Phoebe Fund can be made to be made to the nonprofit Friends of Hillsborough County Animal Services, P.O. Box 2191, Seffner, FL 33583, or through PayPal at www.friendsofHCAS.org. Anyone with tips about the case is asked call Animal Services at (813) 744-5660 or send an email to email@example.com. You do not have to identify yourself, Ryan said.
* * *
Microbrewery set to open in March
Two Wesley Chapel craft beer lovers plan to open a microbrewery in Seminole Heights in March. Called Angry Chair Brewing, it will offer unusual beers such as a German chocolate cake stout and a bananas foster stout, said co-founder Ryan Dowdle. The brewer will be Ben Romano from Cigar City Brewing.
* * *
Expressway to close at Exit 8
A construction project on the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway is expected to create a detour for all westbound traffic at Exit 8 on Sunday evening. Traffic is scheduled to be forced off the exit onto westbound Kennedy Boulevard, then south on Morgan Street and back onto the expressway from the Morgan Street entrance ramp from 7 p.m. Sunday until 5 a.m. Monday. When the detour is removed, the westbound lane on that stretch of expressway that had been closed since December 2011 should be reopened, providing two through lanes - although one will still be closed periodically at night as construction continues.
* * *
'White knight' lends $20,000 for YMCA
An anonymous "white knight" has stepped up with a $20,000 loan to give a hopeful music promoter 30 days to work on his dream of renovating the 85-year-old YMCA in downtown St. Petersburg. "We live to fight another day," said Thomas Nestor, who says he has a purchase agreement to buy the Mediterranean-style building for $1.4 million. The agreement was contingent on a $20,000 payment that was due Thursday. He wants to turn the beautiful, yet bedraggled building into a music museum and event venue. However, the landmark is far from saved. Nestor's contract now calls for monthly payments of $8,000, the first due on Dec. 15. He is hoping to land a bigger loan or donation to hold the building while he secures grants and corporate sponsorships to finance a purchase and renovations. Meanwhile, St. Petersburg Preservation president Peter Belmont delivered to City Hall on Thursday about 500 postcards signed by residents who are against demolishing the building.