Christopher Spata - Enterprise Reporter

Enterprise Reporter

I love stories about people pursuing unusual goals, and what drives them. I've written about retirees attending Santa Claus School, competitors at the World Sign Spinning Championships and an optician rebuilding old Chuck E. Cheese robots in his bedroom. I'm also looking for local culture stories, from tracing the global path plastic beads take to Tampa's Gasparilla festival, to pondering mysterious butt graffiti in downtown St. Pete. I previously worked for the Tampa Tribune and Ocala Star-Banner. I'm a rare, native-born Floridian. Florida isn't "weird," it's just more interesting.

  1. Ozzie Saez stands next to a Gulfstream G-IV jet once owned by Hustler publisher Larry Flynt.
  2. The Raoufi siblings, all Afghan refugees, have found work with Westminster Communities in Bradenton. From left is Suliman Raoufi, 19, Atefah, 20, Noman, 25, Venus, 21, and Omran, 18. The family is pictured here with the Westminster Point Pleasant in the background, on Monday, July 18, 2022.
  3. Illustration by Sean Kristoff-Jones
  4. Emily Rowley steers with her foot as she drives to the store on May 5, 2022 in Bradenton.
  5. Marchers protest and chant during a gun-safety march on Saturday, in St. Petersburg.
  6. Tom Cruise portrays Capt. Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in a scene from "Top Gun: Maverick."
  7. Drew Garabo sits at his remote broadcasting setup in the living room of his home in Odessa, Florida on Wednesday, May 11, 2022. Garabo, who is fighting testicular cancer, has been broadcasting remotely from home during his afternoon radio show on 102.5-FM The Bone.
  8. Bobby Linn, left, demonstrates a fire starter to an unidentified browser at the Homesteading and Prepping Summit at the St. John's County Fairgrounds in Elkton, Fla. on Saturday, April 24, 2022.
  9. George, a 1-year-old Great Dane, hangs out at North Shore Dog Park last week in St. Petersburg. “George always picks up his poop,” his owner Molly said. “He’s very considerate of his neighbors.”
  10. Tampa has appeared in TV comedies often.
  11. Illustration by Sean Kristoff-Jones
  12. More than a million people each month dial a phone number to get the time and temperature, said John Lochridge, the man bringing such phone lines back from the dead.
  13. A toilet shaped like Lars Ulrich of Metallica sits in the Ripley's Believe It or Not! warehouse in Orlando.
  14. Vladimir Malkin emigrated to the United States after the Soviet Union collapsed. (Times 2019)
  15. Rayellen Griffin, 48, gives her dog, Rembrandt, a lift while visiting the St. Pete Pier on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022 in St. Petersburg. Griffin moved to St. Pete from northern Kentucky last year.
  16. Según el FBI los floridanos perdieron más de 40 millones de dólares en 2020 debido a estafas amorosas. Las mujeres denuncian más que los hombres este tipo de delitos.[ Lisa Merklin ]
  17. Floridians reported losing $40.1 million to romance scams in 2020, according to the FBI.
  18. Cheddar, a trained Harris’s Hawk, scans a grassy at Tampa International Airport on Wednesday, Jan 26, 2022, while searching for cattle egrets.
  19. The Jose Gasparilla pirate ship, carrying hundreds of pirates in Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla, sails during the Gasparilla Pirate invasion on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022, in Tampa, Fla.
  20. Worker clean up dead fish kill in a  canal in Apollo Beach. Red tide-triggered fish kills were reported in downtown Tampa. on Bayshore Boulevard, Apollo Beach and a MacDill Air Force Base earlier last summer.
  21. Fans cheer at Amalie Arena on Thursday as the Tampa Bay Lightning take on the Vancouver Canucks.
  22. Lt. Gen. Michael "Erik" Kurilla gives a speech at the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) change of command, March 5, 2021, at Fort Campbell, Ky. Kurilla is nominated to become the next commander of U.S. Central Command, which oversees the U.S. military's operations in the Middle East, from its headquarters at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa.
  23. Child tax credits approved by Congress to help families during the pandemic end Friday.

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