November 2008 Tampa News


Wanted: Mentors to Help Make a Difference

Discover the many benefits of mentoring including the satisfaction of positively impacting the life of a child.The national average for high school graduation is between 68 and 71 percent. This means that almost one-third of all public high school students in America fail to graduate. For minority students the rate drops to 50 percent.

You can make a difference and help a child succeed by becoming a mentor or tutor through the Mayor’s Mentoring Initiative. City policy allows an employee, with supervisor approval, 90 minutes a week to mentor or tutor a child in one of our identified partner schools. Partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters and SERVE, mentors and tutors are trained and supported throughout the process. Making that connection with a child in elementary school can go a long way towards assuring they will stay in school and graduate.

If you would like to become a mentor or for more information about the City’s mentoring initiative please call Rebecca Heimstead at (813) 274-5909 or via e-mail

Marjorie Park Marina Designated a Clean Marina

Marjorie Park Marina Designated a Clean Marina.Marjorie Park Marina has been awarded the Clean Marina designation by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Marjorie Park Marina is the fourth marina in Hillsborough County to receive the designation and to demonstrate that it has instituted sound environmental practices, encouraged proper boating habits and promoted clean waterways. Only ten percent of Florida's 2,000 marinas have been certified as Clean Marinas.

Tampa Fire Rescue Receives Grant from Aon Risk Services

Tampa Fire Rescue vehicle fitted with emergency racks.Because emergency response times play a critical role in saving lives and fighting fires, Tampa Fire Rescue relies on smaller vehicles to access tight, hard-to-reach areas. During concerts, parades, high school sporting events, and other large venues, Tampa firefighters drive units similar to mini, modified pick-up trucks. The small trucks are about the size of golf carts but have much stronger engines, transmissions and suspensions.

Now, Aon Risk Services, Inc. and Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company are awarding a $15,000 grant to Tampa Fire Rescue to outfit the three vehicles with special racks to help in specific rescue situations. The first special rescue vehicles will be outfitted with a unique medical rack to help transport victims to an ambulance. The other two units will be fitted with emergency racks to provide quick firefighting and advanced medical life support, similar to a “mini” fire engine. The firefighting and medical rescue racks are not permanently affixed and can be removed from the units as needed.

“Time is of the essence when responding to any emergency, and these modified rescue units enable us to provide expanded service in the community,” said Fire Chief Dennis Jones.

Santa Fest and Holiday Parade - Centennial Park and Ybor City Museum

Rays Appreciation Day in Tampa

Over 500 fans came out to Lykes Gaslight Square Park on Thursday, November 6 to be a part of Rays Appreciation Day in Tampa.Over 500 fans came out to Lykes Gaslight Square Park on Thursday, November 6 to be a part of Rays Appreciation Day in Tampa.  The City of Tampa hosted a celebration in honor of the American League Championship winners the Tampa Bay Rays.

Made by Hand - Art Show and Sale - Kate Jackson Community Center


The Recyclotron 1000 is always ready to recycle.Tampa citizens are going the “extra mile” to do their part and recycle – in this case – by bicycle. The City of Tampa recently expanded its curbside recycling program with the addition of various materials (including junk mail, phone books and cardboard), to the list of already-accepted recyclables. As a result of the expansion, the Department of Solid Waste has seen a vast increase in the number of requests for additional blue recycling bins.

One of the more unique requests for additional bins came from avid cyclist Jack Sweeney, who retrofitted his bicycle to transform it into a recycling collection vehicle. After seeing the large amount of litter, mostly composed of recyclable items, during his morning commute and usual bike rides, he decided to take action.

By strapping a blue curbside recycling bin onto each side of his bike, the “Recyclotron 1000” was born. Now Jack can combine his bike rides with community improvement (he does however note that the bins on either side do make the bike rather wide and he can no longer “thread the needle” as much as he used to).

14th Annual Police Memorial Run

Runners of all ages got on their mark to get set and go for the race that honors fallen heroes.Nearly 1,000 participants raced to the finish line during the 14th Annual Police Memorial Run.  Runners gathered at Lykes Gaslight Square Park to support the men and women of the Tampa Police Department who lost their lives in the line of duty.  The proceeds from the race help fund the Police Museum and the Memorial Scholarship Program. Through community support the race has become the second largest road race in the city.

Water Department hosts Miniature Gold Tournament

"Geeks are it" was awarded Best Hole by the Judges.The Water Department got creative with United Way Fundraising by creating a nine-hole miniature golf course. Many compliments were received on both the food and the fun that was had during their lunch hour and prizes were handed out.

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