Sara DiNatale, Retail, Tourism and Workplace Culture Reporter

Sara DiNatale

Retail, Tourism and Workplace Culture Reporter

I’m a Buffalo native who has been thawing out in Florida since joining the Tampa Bay Times in 2015. I started as a night cops reporter in Tampa. But these days, I’m running to new grocery stores instead of crime scenes. As our retail, tourism and workplace culture reporter, I’m able to use my sleuth-shopper skill set and eye for trends combined with my favorite pastime, telling stories. I search out topics I know will resonate with readers and get them thinking or talking. I’m a coupon clipper, yogi novice and eyeglasses enthusiast. You’ll rarely spot me on the weekend without my mini schnauzer, Addy, in tow. We’re regulars at St. Petersburg’s Dog Bar and the area’s several dog parks. So feel free to say hi or give us a news tip. Addy gives great high-fives.

I took a CBD bong hit before a yoga class to see if it helps with anxiety

OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times Tampa Bay Times reporter Sara DiNatalie, right, participates in the yoga class held at the Chillum CBD Dispensary in Ybor City on Tuesday, April 2, 2019. CBD comes from the hemp plant, but has low (or no) THC within it. It is legal in Florida and the U.S. to sell and consume CBD with below .3 percent of THC present.
Reporter Sara DiNatale heads to Chillum CBD Dispensary in Ybor to try CBD, take a yoga class and see for herself if it helps aid in relaxation.

Mini Doughnut Factory shuts down as legal battle heats up

Sprinkles topping the Homer Simpson doughnut at the Mini Doughnut Factory, which has now closed its Tampa and St. Petersburg shops. [DIRK SHADD | Times]
The founders of the shop are now counter suing their lead investor, Lee Kearney. Their attorney says Kearney ran the business 'into the ground.'

Robots coming to some Tampa Bay Walmarts as part of renovations

The storefront of the Walmart Supercenter located at 19910 Bruce B. Downs Road in Tampa. [Times files (2017)]
Walmart says it will spend $173 million renovating stores across Florida in 2019, resulting in new looks for stores in Oldsmar, Riverview and Tampa.

Interim CEO of Visit St. Pete/Clearwater resigns for Memphis Zoo job

Jim Dean took over as interim director of Visit St. Pete/Clearwater after exiting his role as the park CEO of SeaWorld Orlando. He’s now leaving for a job in Memphis. (Courtesy of Jim Dean)
After two months in Pinellas, the former SeaWorld executive calls it quits.

Dali museum granted next step in long road to receive tourism tax dollars

Talia Blanchard, 15, (left) and Jordan Heidt, 16, both from Lithia, take photos with the art at the Dali Museum in St. Petersburg. The museum is in the process of requesting funding for a major expansion. [MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times]
Museum is requesting $17.5 million to help cover expansion plans