USF College of Marine Science – 50 Years of Milestones 

  • 1955 Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s,  Florida Marine Research Institute established in St. Petersburg, Fl.
  • 1960 Oceanographic courses offered on USF’s Bayboro Campus.
  • 1967 Marine Science Institute founded on USF’s Bayboro Campus at the former US Maritime Base– evolving into our USF CMS today.
  • 1969 First24 graduate students enrolled and a year later nine marine science courses offered– more than any other marine station. College now offers 71 courses
  • 1971 First National Science Foundation (NSF) grant awarded to study the factors involved in growing seaweed as a crop $32,400.
  • Dr. Tomas Hopkins research cruise to study the food chain in the Gulf of Mexico. The first set of midwater micronekton and zoo plankton are taken from a standard station in the open Gulf. This food web has been studied for over 30 (45) years, making it one of the most intensely studied food webs in the ocean.
  • 1972 Formation of the Department of Marine Science within the College of Natural Sciences.
  • 1982 Florida Board of Regents approves “standalone” PhD program in marine science at USF.
  • 1991 Ground-breaking for new joint research facility (140,000 square feet) to serve Florida’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Department of Marine Science (USF). Oceanography Camp for Girls (OCG)founded.
  • 1993 First major Climate Change Involvement in conjunction with Pinellas County and the Tampa Bay Harbor Pilots Association, the Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System(PORTS) is funded and begins serving ocean science,  commerce and the public with physicaldataon Tampa Bay every six minutes around the clock
  • 1997 The Florida Legislature initiating funding for COMPS (Coastal Ocean Monitoring and Prediction System), an ongoing program that, in combination with NOAA, monitors and models important physical processes on the West Florida Shelf for both scientific purposes and to provide guidance for commercial activities and for the management of ocean hazards by various state and local governmental agencies.
  • 1999 USF establishes a Science Journalism Center consisting of a partnership between the Department of Marine Science and the College of Mass Communications.
  • 2000 College of Marine Science created (July1) Peter R. Betzer named Acting Dean (July14)
  • 2001 Collegereceivesathree-yearGK-12 Fellowship Award from National Science Foundation to foster the interaction between ocean scientists and public schools through fellowships to support Marine Science graduate students working and teaching in the schools (first year eight students awarded fellowships).
  • 2003 College becomes a member of Consortium for Oceanographic Research and Education (CORE) and Joint Oceanographic Institutions (JOI).
  • 2006 College of Marine Science receives $8.5M grant for advanced instrumentation from The Florida Technology, Research and Scholarship Board (HB1237; Florida House of Representatives: 2006 Legislative Session).
  • 2010 Center for Integrated Modeling and Analysis of the Gulf Ecosystem (C-IMAGE) grant funded for$11 million overt here years from the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Research Board to study the effects from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill with 17 member Institutions.
  • 2015 The Center for Integrated Modeling and Analysis of Gulf Ecosystems (C-IMAGE-II) is a research consortium of 19 U.S. and international partners focused on effects of oil spills on marine environments. C-IMAGE-II was funded by the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (Go MRI) at $20.2 million for three years. Its focus is to advance understanding of the processes, mechanisms and environmental consequences of marine oil blowouts. Recent events like Deepwater Horizon focused the scientific efforts of C-IMAGEI, but C-IMAGE II looks to gain in sight by researching a parallel blowout incident that occurred in 1979 in the Bay of Campeche on the Ixtoc -1 platform.

St. Pete Beach Mediterranean Produce & Deli and Mirela’s Salon 

Odise Armata and his wife Mirela are a remarkable young couple, raising a growing young family together, each running a small business of their own. We had written about Odise (Odissay) a few years ago, when his fledgling St. Pete Beach Produce store next to Scoops attracted Andrea, a volunteer, to help his business. He’d shop at the farmers market in Tampa at3 am to get the best pick of fresh local produce, then deliver orders to restaurant clients on his way back to his shop. Starting out with a counter and triple sink, he made salads and sandwiches with his fresh produce.

Since then, Odise expanded and moved St. Pete Beach Produce and Deli into a free-standing building between the Basil Leaf and Fetishes, at 6355 Gulf Blvd. in St. Pete Beach. His passion is to provide fresh, healthy food and wider ethnic options at affordable prices. Their hand-sliced gyro made with fresh onions, tomatoes and homemade tzatziki sauce for just $5.99 is a good example. So is the Boar’s Head cooler full of premium meats and cheeses for dollars under the closest competitor. His real passion lies in selling the fresh salads like Tabouleh made daily. Odise waves off my praise of his accomplishments.

“Any young person with perseverance and a positive attitude can do what I did if they stick to it”, says Odise.  “It’s my wife Mirela who is truly amazing”  he continues. I went to my native Albania looking for a woman to join me in Florida and we fell for each other. She came here to join me, almost strangers.” In five short years she learned English and followed her passion to get a cosmetology license from Lorraine’s Beauty Academy. Oh, she also became an American citizen, is raising their son, now 3-years old, who in May expects a baby sister. For all these several years, Mirela also prepared most of the desserts sold in the pastry case and some in the freezer. ”

Many locals will find a copy of the menu in this issue of Paradise NEWS. Otherwise, see for a menu & more details about the restaurant. Mirela also just opened Mirela’s Talent Salon in January at6365 Gulf Blvd., adjacent to St. Pete Beach Produce and Deli.

Since hair is her passion, Mirela has a lifetime of experience and the fresh professional training one needs to be licensed in Florida, so she knows all the newest services people want today.  A current printed menu of services with general pricing is available from Mirela’s Talent Salon. Mirela is seeking a talented local stylist to cover the shop while she bonds with her daughter this summer, and to stay on afterward. If your stylist is not happy where they are, you might suggest they contact Mirela. Her phone is 727-564-3645. Email is

Article by Peter A. Roos

USF Unique Oceanography Camp for Girls Marks 25 Years at Marine Science Campus

In the 1990’s several national studies revealed a tremendous drop in the number of women pursuing math and science degrees. To address this short fall on a local level, the USF College of Marine Science began the first Oceanography Camp for Girls (OCG) in 1991, a National Science Foundation Model Program for Women and Girls.

The all-girls setting dissolves social barriers to learning, takes place in an authentic science environment and advances a positive sense of self.

OCG Director Teresa Greely recalls “Our Camp on the USF St. Petersburg campus was developed to inspire and motivate young women entering high school to consider career opportunities in the sciences. Each three-week program provides hands-on, research experiences in both laboratory and field environments. “Under the interdisciplinary umbrella of oceanography, participants are directly involved in disciplines in which women and minorities are most often underrepresented; chemistry, geology, physics, engineering and mathematics.” “Strengths of this program are: interdisciplinary learning that focuses on the physical sciences as well as math and biology; participation in real-world research projects and problem solving; graduate student mentors capable of not only teaching science but also identifying with campers on levels that both inspire and increase their confidence about science; one-to-one mentoring between teenaged girls and research scientists; alumni campers, who serve as peer counselors to”new” campers while enhancing their communication and leadership skills.

”Registration Details All girls in Pinellas County schools who are completing the 8th grade can learn science while having fun experiencing the Ocean World. Be an oceanographer during field and lab explorations, including a day at sea aboard a research vessel, coastal marine field trips, “real-world” research projects, career interviews and behind the scenes at SeaWorld. Science mentors include graduate students, research scientists, educators and camp alumni as teen counselors.

Session is three weeks from June 12-30, 8 am-4 pm daily at the USF College of Marine Science,140 7th Ave. South, St. Petersburg. There is no cost, only daily transportation (limited to 30 girls)

Apply to the 2017 OCG until March 31:

  1. Download an Application at
  2. Complete application & return by March 31 deadline via mail to: USF Marine Science, 140 7th Ave. S. St. Petersburg, FL 33701 (postmarked March 31st)OR email to Angela Lodge,
  3. Participate in an interview at your school the month of April
  4. Letters mailed to all applicants about the outcome the week of May 1.

For any questions on the Application, call 727-553-3921. Greely offers this final note, ”Probably the best way to describe the benefits of our all-girls camp is to share what one camper’s parent had to say: ‘I have never seen my daughter so excited to come home muddy, sun-kissed, exhausted, and ready to wake up early to begin again the next day!’ or perhaps a quote captured from a recent camper, ‘…how fun it was to get our hands dirty and not be concerned with our appearance, because there were no boys, just girls with the same interest in learning’.”  PN

Story by STEVE TRAIMAN•  Photos by OCG

[Editors’s Note: Special thanks to Teresa Greely, Angela Lodge and Rhonda Sanborn at the OCG for their excellent comments and photos.][Steve Traiman is President of Creative Copy by Steve Traiman in St. Pete Beach, offering freelance business writing services. He can be reached via email at]

Protecting Our Seas for 50 Years: College of Marine Science – University of South Florida, St. Petersburg

The Paradise News community is invited to join the University of South Florida College of Marine Science (USFCMS) in celebrating 50 years of advancing ocean education, research and innovation in downtown St. Petersburg. Alumni, faculty and friends from across the US and around the world will come together to honor the past, celebrate the present, embrace the future.

The 50th celebration will be held April 5-8, 2017 at the C.W. Bill Young Marine Science Complex along the Bayboro Waterfront. Seminars, plenaries and special events will include alumni and friends from across the globe. A variety of family friendly field trips and activities have been planned. Bring your family for some fun in the sun!

Howard Rutherford, CMS Director of Development, told Paradise News,  “At the College of Marine Science, we create and disseminate knowledge about the oceans (physics, chemistry, biology and geology) and marine fisheries through observation, modeling and theory.  In the process of aiding our students to achieve their professional goals, we aim to interact with all students, scientists and citizens to do our part in creating a more scientifically-informed society.” “We welcome anyone who has a passion for the oceans and for science, who values different perspectives, and who cherishes the opportunity to think critically and promote dialogue about the knowledge we create and disseminate. Regardless of what you look like, what you believe, or where you come from, we want to include you in our college if this description fits you.” (See accompanying 50 Years– Milestones) “Florida is an ocean state and it’s important to note that coastal tourism contributes more than 200,000 jobs and $50 billion annually to the state economy.  What’s more, seafood sales alone contribute $30 billion each year– more than the cattle and citrus industries combined. That is precisely why climate change is such a pressing issue. Florida is highly susceptible to negative impacts of a changing climate, in particular coastal flooding due to extreme events and sea level rise, saltwater intrusion and ocean acidification.”

“The reality is that we can’t protect what we don’t understand, and a sustainable Florida requires a fundamental understanding of how the ocean system works and how we are changing it. All of us at the College of Marine Science– 27 faculty members, 100 graduate students and 47 research staff members– are absolutely committed to this goal.”   The 11-acre waterfront campus has three major buildings, dockside facilities for most oceanographic research vessels and two State of Florida Institute of Oceanography research vessels.

The College currently offers 71 courses and has 100 students on average, with this break down: 68% Doctoral, 32% Master’s; 57% Female, 43% Male; 15% International, 16% US Minority; 20-plus annual Fellowships- $10,000-$22,000; average 50 Graduate Assistants. As of fall 2016, the marine science program has produced 608 graduates (404 MS and 204 PhD).

Dr. Jacqueline Dixon, CMS Dean, sums up, “Looking ahead, let’s start with where the College of Marine Science is today– a leader in ocean education,  research and innovation. In the years and decades ahead, we intend to stay true to our core mission: increasing and applying fundamental knowledge of global ocean systems and human-ocean interactions. We’ll achieve this in the manner that has guided our efforts all along– through research, graduate education and community engagement.”

“Our inter disciplinary research will continue to address issues facing the ocean and our CMS scientists will work in every ocean around the world on issues of global relevance. Ultimately, our goal is to continue as a top oceanographic institution with research that is globally significant, regionally relevant and locally applied.”

“To define our course for the future, it may be helpful to explain what we do as ocean scientists. Marine Science is a lot more than dolphins. When we refer to global ocean systems we are talking about the interdisciplinary research between biologists, chemists, geologists and physicists, who apply their knowledge to understand and predict complex interactions in the marine environment. We have no barriers to full interaction and collaboration on a daily basis, and this is essential as we move forward. We were founded 50 years ago as are search center of excellence and we will remain laser-focused on that mission – now and 50 years from now.

”Registration for the full 50th Anniversary program is available online at with full registration including all speakers for $100. Socials and field trips extra, including:

  • Wednesday,April 5:$15 Campus Grind Evening Social;
  • Thursday, April 6: $5 St. Petersburg SciCafe,
  • Thursday, April 6: $20 Mexican Fiesta Lunch Buffet; Friday,
  • April 7: $20 BBQ Luncheon, Tropical Dinner Buffet;
  • April 8: $25 25th Oceanography Camp for Girls Alumni Luncheon;
  • April 8: $10 Weedon Island Hike & Canoe Paddling Tour;
  • April 8: $10 USF Clam Bayou Preserve Tour
  • April 8: $10 Upham Shoreline Stabilization Tour

Story by Steve Traiman • Photos by USFCMS

[Editor’s Note: Special thanks to Dean Jacqueline Dixon, Howard Rutherford and Megan Chip lock from the USF CMS for their excellent comments and photos.][Steve Traiman is President of Creative Copy by Steve Traiman in St. Pete Beach, offering freelance business writing services. He can be reached via email at


When you get far away from yourself, books show you the way back. Everything literary is in vogue, thanks to groups like Keeping St. Pete Lit, the Arts Alliance, the Morean’s new bookstore, Mitzi Gordon’s Blue Bird Book Bus and author appearances. In October, the Tampa Bay Times’ annual Festival of Reading is a job, while University of Tampa and Eckerd College both feature annual author appearances.

EVENTS Olli, Eckerd College: So many great classes, from literature to film and poetry.

  • 130 Years of Sherlock Holmes with instructor Rick Kistner; April 5, 9, 26 The Center at Palm Harbor; April 6, 20, 27 (Eckerd College)
  • Celebrating Florida Fiction with Author/Instructor Cathy Salustri Eckerd College-April 6; Palm Harbor-April 7
  • March 21, 2 pm Nan Colton is Agatha Christie:  This acclaimed performing artist in residence at the Museum of Fine Arts portrays best- selling novelist Agatha Christie at Pass-A-Grille Beach Community Church, 107 16thAve., St. Pete Beach;  727-360-5508or visit
  • April 13 Coffee Talks with Nan Colton: Here, she portrays the legendary novelist Virginia Woolf as she sits for French painter Jacques Emile Blanche.

April 21-23 The Florida Antiquarian Book Fair: The oldest and largest antiquarian book fair in the Southeastern United States. Visitors will find books of every age and about every conceivable topic, in a wide range of price ranges. The event features books, maps, prints, ephemera, autographs and more. The book fair will be part of the third annual SunLit Festival, a celebration of literature. The Coliseum, 535 4th Ave N. downtown St. Pete

WRITERS GROUPS & COLLECTIVES Keep St. Pete Lit: Promotes the literary community past, present and future through arts, education and events with a literary twist, including writers classes, beach journaling, beginning blogging and more at the LitSpace in the Morean Arts Center and around the community. They’ve just launched Bookspace as well, a bookstore supported by donations that supports the organization.  www.Keepstpetelit.orgor email

Studio@ 620 620 1st Avenue South, downtown St. Pete. Wordier Than Thou, an open mic for story-telling, share prose or just catch tales from area wordsmiths. A featured reader kicks off the night, followed by 10 minute open mic slots. In partnership with Keep St. Pete Lit there will also be a Poetry Open Mike with a featured poet and opportunity to read  7 – 9 pm, May 17, June 21, July 26, Aug. 23, Sept. 27 and Oct. 25

BAPWG:Paradise New’s Feature writer, Steve Traiman, runs the Bay Area Professional Writer’s Guild(BAPWG) meets on the 4thMonday (1 pm) Bardmoor Plaza Panera in Largo. The mission? To provide resources to students and new writers with an interest in a professional career; to further the education, expansion and appreciation of the arts within our community; and to serve and support our members to further their careers. They also host speakers who address various topics that support writing as a career. One of their members is Louise Harris and under her guidance, the group has published its first member anthology.

SINK or SWIM: How Overcoming Obstacles Makes Life Worth-while. Since its release last October on, the book has had hundreds of paid and free down-loads, and good sales of print copies. Louise always wanted to be a writer, publishing her first poem at age 12. She graduated from the University of MD College of Journalism and has published two novels, The 1776 Scroll and The 1776 Inn. FYI: or email President Steve Traiman:


Weetime at Weedon and The Dali both have lovely programs. Good will is hosting a Bookworks Book Drive through March 15,supporting childhood literacy and giving kids free books Tampa Bay; just drop off your donation marked For BookWorks. Encourage your student to enter Fantastical Times, a writing contest for Tampa Bay high school students through Mar. 31

Article by Nanette Wiser

Birch & Vine New Chef – Luke Decker!  

Lauded as one of the top restaurants in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, The Birch & Vine at  The Birchwood has a  new executive chef, Luke Decker, who has been with the restaurant since its inception and knows the menu’s global-inspired and inventive dishes well.  Chef Luke’s plates will  feature seasonal influences, locally sourced meats, fish and vegetables with unique twists on favorite dishes.

Decker was only 24 when his brother Chef Anthony convinced Decker to leave his retail career and work at Bella Brava, siblings joined by a love of cooking.

After three years training under Chef Mario Maggi and his brother Chef Anthony Decker (now Chef de Cuisine at NYC’s Felidia), Decker started working under Executive Chef Jason Cline at The Birchwood when it opened in 2013.

The rest is magic. For the next four years, he honed his skills as a grill cook, sous chef and finally chef de cuisine. Chef Luke jokes that he was, “a late bloomer, ”but his work ethic, technical skills, drive and desire to be great at what he does while delivering memorable meals make him the perfect choice for Executive Chef at The Birchwood.

Chef Luke’s brother still inspires him, and he’s not afraid to experiment with new dishes and trends. Creativity is central to good cooking as is a well-trained staff that understands the ingredients and techniques used to prepare dishes.

At home with his wife and two sons, Chef Luke loves to cook steak or shrimp on the grill.  At work, seafood is his passion as is using locally sourced ingredients. He also loves using port and sherry wine in his dishes and believes that a seasoned palate and a good chef’s knife is essential for preparing a great meal. PN

Article by By Nanette Wiser

Arts & Culture News and Best Bets

Spring comes in like a lion, and for those of us who love festivals, music, arts, dance and partie. It’s a roaring good time in March. With the passing of legendary jazz artist Al Jarreau last month, I’m gung-ho to see as many famous artists as I can at Tampa Bay’s amazing festivals and performing arts venues especially the Plant City Strawberry Festival, Tampa Bay Blues April fest and the Charlie Daniels Band April 1at Pinellas Park’s England Brother Park. Art comes alive in the gardens (Sunken Garden, see sidebar) and at the Chagall-inspired designs at Marie Selby Gardens. For lit lovers, Carl Hiassenis at The Straz Center March ,5 as is Celtic Woman: Voices of Angels, while the exciting Tiempo Librestuns March 10 and Forbidden Broadway is a riot March 12. Ciao baby, see you around town!  – Nanette Wiser

For venue address, phone number and website, be sure to check our Events Listings in theback of the magazine. Sign up for our FREE Thursday newsletter with Top Five Events at


Palladium/Side Door/Hough Hall 

  • On March 17 at the Side Door, Green Tambourine: Coo Coo Ca Choo celebrate classic rock favorites from The Beatles, The Animals, The Beach Boys, Jimmy Reed, The Walker Brothers, The Fortunes, Hendrix, Cream, Sly and the Family Stone, The Young Rascals, Bobby “Blue” Bland, Steve Miller & more.
  • Also on tap in March is the music of Stan Getz (March 12), Paul McCartney(March16) and in April, jazzy Nicole Henryand the kick-off to The Blues Festwith Samantha Fish(April 6). 253 Fifth Ave. N, downtown St. Pete 727- 822-3590


St. Petersburg Seafood & Music Festival Co-hosted by the City of St. Petersburg and the St. Petersburg Arts Alliance, this new festival (March 25-26) blends seafood dishes, delightful local restaurant fare, sensational sips, crafts, gourmet food products with live music (soul, classic rock, R&B, jazz, salsa) including Jah Movement, Orchestra Fuego, Mike Tozier, the Greg Billings Band, Twinkle & Rock Soul Radio, the Hubb Tones, RJ Howson and the Sarasota Steel Pan Band. Sat./Sun. 10 am – 8 pm North Straub Park, downtown St. Pete


The Mahaffey Duke Energy Center for the Arts, The Mahaffey Theater 400 First St. South 727-893-7832

  • Don’t miss Brain Candy Live! March15, an outrageous evening of entertainment from two amazing minds: Adam Savage, former co-host of the Emmy-nominated Discovery series Myth Busters, and YouTube star Michael Stevens (“Vsauce”) showcase three tons of their crazy toys, incredible tools and mind-blowing demonstrations for a celebration of curiosity that’s been described as “A cross between TED Talks and the Blue Man Group.” Adam and Michael’s BRAIN CANDY LIVE! experience is like a two-hour play date with Walt Disney, Willy  Wonka and lbert Einstein.  A limited number of VIP Meet & Greet tickets are available for $125 (includes a post-performance meet and greet & photo opportunity with Adam Savage and Michael Stevens, a signed 8×10 photo and a commemorative laminate). A separate show ticket must also be purchased to attend the Meet & Greet.
  • ‘Saturday Night Fever – The Musical’ dances our way March 17 for those who love the Bee Gees music and dancing Tony Manero from Brooklyn as much as I do.
  • Rock Stars & Stripes: A Rock ‘n Roll Road Trip Across America (April14) is the brainchild of former Boston front man and guitar player David Victor, Rock Stars & Stripes is a unique concert experience that takes audiences on a virtual road trip across the country by performing classic American rock ‘n’ roll hits set against the backdrop of engaging video of some of America’s most iconic landmarks, places and people. During this explosive performance, music lovers will hear a selection of songs from some of the best American bands in music history, including Aerosmith, The Eagles, Kiss, Bruce Springsteen, Journey, Boston and many more.
  • Country legend Dwight Yoakam strums hearts March 5.


Tampa Bay Blues Festival April 7-9: Alfresco at Vinoy Park, this is one of the year’s most anticipated music festivals.

Friday –

  • Dennis Gruenling – 12:30-2p
  • The Jordan Patterson Band – 2:30 – 4p
  • Albert Cummings – 4:30 – 6p
  • Ana Popovic – 6:30 – 8p
  • Buddy Guy – 8:30 – 10 p


  • Matt Schofield – 12:30 – 2p
  • Samantha Fish – 2:30 – 4p
  • Toranzo Cannon – 4:30 – 6p
  • Coco Montoya – 6:30 – 8 p
  • The Rides with Stephen Stills, Kenny Wayne Shepherd & Barry Goldberg – 8:30 – 10p


  • Backtrack Blues Band – 1 – 2:15p
  • JW-Jones – 2:30 – 4p
  • The Lee Boys – 4:30 – 6p
  • Dawn Tyler Watson – 6:30 – 8p
  • Tab Benoit – 8:30 – 10p

VIP Experience Package: 

An unforgettable way to enjoy three days of great music, food, drinks and hospitality. Purchase a 3 – day VIP pass for this year’s festival, and become a member of our Tampa Bay Blues Club. The purchaser’s name published in our Festival program as a valued 2017 TBBF Blues Club member.

  • Special concert seating in padded chairs, located directly in front of main stage.
  • Use of two large shade tents, with tables & comfortable chairs; water views of Tampa Bay.
  • Dinners catered each evening at 6 pm.
  • Complimentary lunch presentations by local restaurants and on site chefs at 2 pm each day.
  • Free beers, wines, sodas and spring water. A private cash mixed drinkbar is also provided.
  • Upscale, air conditionedrestrooms for VIP patronsonly.
  • Free Festival programs for all VIP customers.
  • Complimentary champagne and mimosas served Sunday afternoon.
  • With each 3-Day VIP purchase, a listing of the purchaser’s name as a member of our Tampa BayBlues Club, recognizing you as a critical supporter of the Festival.


If you love swing, head over to the Coliseum. ; 727-892-5202.  If you want to shake your booty, downtown St. Pete’s Ruby Elixir and Del Mar Gastro Pub is for adults who want to trip the light fantastic. Over at Eckerd College, they are showing Live HD Opera Performances in Miller Auditorium.

  • La Traviata An Opera by Giuseppe Verdi March 11, 12:55 pm: Sonya Yonchevasings one of opera’s most beloved heroines, the tragic courtesan Violetta, a role in which she triumphed on the Met stage in 2015 opposite Michael Fabiano (as her lover, Alfredo) & Thomas Hampson (as his father, Germont). Carmen Giannattasio sings later performances of the title role opposite Atalla Ayan, with the great Plácido Domingoas Germont. Nicola Luisotti conducts.
  • Saint Joan A Play by George Bernard Shaw March 17, 1:30 pm: Bernard Shaw’s classic play follows the life and trials of a young country girl who declares a bloody mission to drive the English from France. As one of the first Protestants and nationalists, she threatens the very fabric of the feudal society and the Catholic Church across Europe.
  • Indomeneo An Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart March 25, 12:55 pm: Mozart’s first operatic masterpiece returns to the Met in the classic Jean-Pierre Ponnelle production, conducted by Emeritus Music Director James Levine. The superb ensemble includes Matthew Polenzanias the king torn by a rashvow; mezzo-soprano Alice Cootein the trouser role of his noble son Idamante; soprano Nadine Sierraas Ilia; and soprano Elza van den Heeveras the volatile Elettra, who loves Idamante to the bounds of madness. FILM Eckerd College International Cinema Series Films start 7 pm Miller Auditorium.
  • Right Now, Wrong Then March 10: The latest feature by Korean director Hong Sang-soo (Hahaha, Our Sunhi), Right Now, Wrong Then offers two versions of the same bare plot: A famous film director travels to a suburb of Seoul to show one of his films and meets a budding painter with whom he flirts both romantically and artistically. Taken separately, each is a simple episode in the life of an artist, but when compared, the differences between the two demonstrate how small choices add up to different results in people as much as events. Right Now, Wrong Then won the Golden Leopard at the 2015 Locarno International Film Festival.
  • Neruda March 17: From the director of Jackie, Neruda focuses on the relationship between art and politics in post–World War II Chile. After criticizing the sitting president in a speech to the National Congress in 1948,the Chilean poet and Communist senator, Pablo Neruda (Luis Gnecco), retreated into hiding. Neruda traces his struggle to continue to connect with life and his likeminded followers along-side the dogged attempts of a fascist policeman (Gael García Bernal) to track him down. This film was selected as the Chilean entry to the2017 Academy Awards.

Sunset Cinema at Pier 60 in Clearwater Beach continues on the jumbo-sized screen Fri.-Sat. beginning at 6 pm.


Artist Tour/Artists At Work – March 18 (10 am – 5 pm)  March 19(noon – 5 pm): This free, self-guided public art tour is sponsored by The Artist Enclave of Historic Kenwood. Enjoy two days exploring the architecturally rich neighbor-hood of Historic Kenwood while you view the exhibits of19 artists at 15 different stops. See work by ceramicists, sculptors, jewelers, photographers, illustrators, and fine art painters. This year’s theme, “Artists at Work,” allows patrons and visitors to engage with artists, and enjoy live demos throughout the two-day tour.  Learn about the creative process and what steps an artist takes to bring their ideas from concept to completion. FYI:

Duncan McClellan Gallery: 

Wild Life! showcases Seattle glass artists Kelly O’Dell & Raven Sky river opening March 11 (5 – 10 pm) enjoy an artist reception, glass blowing demonstration and live music with the Henry Ashwood Jazz Project. (thru April 7) 2342 Emerson Ave South; 855-436-4527.

Studio @ 620:

Music, art, spoken word, poetry, this performance/visual art gallery is a downtown treasure. 620 First Avenue S., downtown St. Pete 727-895-6620

  • Jazzy Philip Charos Quartet – March 17, 7:30 pm – features Joe Porter(upright bass), Jason Charos (trumpet), Nick DeLuca (guitar), and led by dynamic composer, drummer, and vocalist Philip Charos performing a repertoire of colorfully original jazz music and select standards.
  • Photography takes center stage with Here And Thereopening March 10.  A group photography exhibit of six local artists whose work features vast landscapes, intimate spaces, spiritual travelogue, playful portraiture, unintentional paintings, and lazy after-noons. Photographers include Karen Kommer, Benjamin Ross Duensing, Laura Dante, Kevin Damphouse, Kéra Holzinger and Lenore Duensing.
  • Collective Soles Dance Company performs “With Love” March 24-25 (7 pm), a performance that investigate slove as it appears through empathy, compassion, and acceptance in a combination of text, dance, audience interaction and more with choreography by Artistic Director Alex Jones and newly appointed Resident Choreographer Sean McDonald.

The Chihuly Collection: 

This stunning, permanent collection of world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly’s unique artwork is presented in a fabulous architectural space designed specifically for his art, showcasing how art and architecture can work together. An iconic 20 foot  sculpture created especially for the site welcomes you at the entrance. The Collection includes Chihuly’s spectacular large-scale installations (Ruby Red Icicle Chandelier, Macchia, Ikebana, Nijima Floats, Persians and Tumbleweeds). A pioneer of the studio glass movement, Chihuly is credited with transforming the methods of creating glass art and there by leading the development of complex, multi-part glass sculptures and environmental art. However, his contributions extend well beyond the boundaries of the studio glass movement and even the field of glass: his achievements have influenced contemporary art in general. Known internationally, his installations include Chihuly Over Venice” with the sculptures installed over the canals and piazze; Chihuly in the Light of Jerusalem”, attended by more than one million visitors, and the Chihuly Bridge of Glass” in Tacoma, Washington.720 Central Avenue, downtown St. Pete 727-822-7872

Syd Entel Gallery and Susan Benjamin Glass: 

The 5000square foot gallery located on Main Street in charming downtown Safety Harbor show cases acclaimed artists from around the World along with today’s premier American glass artists. 727-725-1808 247 Main St. Safty Harbor


Museum of Fine Arts Museum of Fine Arts, 255 Beach Dr. NE, 727-896-2667

  • Thru March 19: The Far North – Inuit Prints and Sculpture – These 30 works by accomplished Inuit artists spans the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
  • Through May 7: Greg Smith Multimedia Artist: Smith’s work often centers on a character attempting to “create something, trying to structure his environment, but who’s also kind of hapless and, in the end, probably doomed.”
  • March 4-July 2:  Dominique Labauvie: Dig: The formal explorations of inter-discipli-nary artist Dominique Labauvie are rooted in both material and a highly developed relationship to philosophies of the drawn line. He has written: “When a line bends, it slows down; as it expands, it suddenly appears as a flat surface—it carves out its presence in space like a black hole. The ground (any ground: earth, wood or stone)hosts the forged lines as the landscape that for centuries has been mapped by rivers, roads, and highways. The line informs us about the absent forms, as only the missing remain in our memories, our books, and in our images. The line attests to the desire of thought.”  Dig brings together recent works by Mr. Labauviein his signature media of steel and pastels. The theme of the ruin runs throughout, as he seems to take on the role of archaeologist, digging into the earth’s histories to try to understand their effect on current events.
  • Thru June 4: The Open Road- Photography and the American Road Trip: Nothing says spring break like this exhibition, a delightful journey through America’s kitschy landscapes. The Dali Museum
  • Thru April 17 – Frida Kahloat the Dali: An exhibition of Frida Kahlo’s paintings and drawings, together with her personal photograph collection showcase her dream like work suggesting that love and suffering create a new sense of beauty. Kahlo’s art and storied life stir immense public interest. The Dali and Beyond Film Series fatures the A&E biography of Frida Kahlo.
  • Thru May – Dali/Duchamp: The father of surrealism and the papa of conceptual art, this is the first exhibit dedicated to Dali and Duchamp’s friendship and influence on each’s art, showcasing 60 works and supplemented by correspondence and collaborative projects.


Gasparilla Music Festival March 11 & 12 – Curtis Hixon Park, Tampa: Headlining 3/11 is Grammy® Award nominee Cage the Elephant while 3/12 features Ryan Adams who will celebrate the release of his new album, “Prisoner, at the festival .Joining the expansive lineup of 40 bands on four stages are: Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, Michal Menert &the Pretty Fantastics, Twin Peaks, Phoebe Bridgers, The Freecoasters, Inkblot and Patel Conservatory Vocal Arts Chorale. Tampa-based Cigar City Brewing is the exclusive beer sponsor and will debut their Gasparilla Music Festival Pilsner. In addition to music, brew and bites, there’s a wellness kickoff (3/11) with the Dubb Tenn Yoga and Ride the Park, a stationary bike ride hosted by SOHO Cycles. And the popular KidsFest which offers musical performances and interactive experiences for children of all ages.

A Touch of Classics: 

The South Pasadena Community Band will present an evening concert featuring classic favorites (including Benny Goodman) and lively marches including “Afternoon of a Faun” and “Old Comrades March.”  The band is composed of 40+ very talented local musicians. 7:30 pm.  For upcoming programs, visit

  • 3/8 Treasure Island Community Center, 1 Park Place & 106th Ave.
  • 4/12 Treasure Island Community Center
  • 5/18 Galatea Garden, South Pasadena Opera, Comedy, Blues @Iberian Rooster: Upstairs, they serve Colonial Portuguese Fusion Food, so savory and unique. Downstairs is the performance space; a sexy, vintage underground lounge.  In addition to opera, there’s a comedy night, amazing blues and jazz.  Sub Central At The Iberian Rooster. 475 Central Avenue, Suite 100 downtown St. Pete

Capitol Theatre:  

Little by little, downtown Clearwater gets more fun with a new coffeehouse, a Pierce Street Market and Blast Friday (3/31 showcases Bill Joel Legends). This summer, Ruth Eckerd Hall will bring John Legend to Coachman Park, home to the annual October Clearwater Jazz Fest. Grab home made pasta or pizza at Cristino’s, then head over to Capital Theater for;

Gordon Lightfoot (3/17), Sinbad (3/18), Michael Amante (3/19), Carrot Top (3/22), The Ten Tenors (3/24), A Bronx Tale starring Chazz Palmenteri (3/25), Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (3/26) and Los Lonely Boys(3/28).


50th Golden Baton Luncheon: 

The Florida Orchestra Guild of St. Petersburg will host its annual luncheon March 25 (11 am – 2 pm) in the Plaza Ballroom of the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel. Since 1965, the Golden Baton Award has been given by the Guild to individuals who have made significant contributions in leadership to benefit the Florida Orchestra. This year’s recipient is Mark T. Mahaffey, a St. Petersburg philanthropist who, with his wife, Marianne, has been a significant supporter of the Florida Orchestra for many years.  Enjoy music by members of the Florida Orchestra and a Silent Auction.  RSVP by March 10 for this Florida Orchestra benefit.

FYI: Charlene Miller, 727.254.1176Mozelle Bell, 727.522.8459  Vinoy Hotel 501 5th Ave. NE, downtown St. Pete


March 21: Theatrical Journalism for LGBTQ Homeless Youth Project: 

In revealing study reveals the devastating issues LGBTQ homeless teens encounter, conducted by the Homeless Youth Project in partnership with Family Resources and underwritten by Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg. From 7 – 9 pm, Your Real Stories tells about the crisis, using theatrical journalism to portray the life experiences of five people either affected by, or working to solve the challenges of a truly underserved population. A post-show Q&A enhanced by the ability to give direct, real time feedback on personal devices  available. FYI:

Admission free, RSVP at www.eventbrite.out-of-the-shadowstickets-31755105375

The Palladium Theatre, 253 5th Ave. N.  St. Petersburg

  • March 3-19: West Coast Players Presents The Lyons by Nicky Silver A smart, dark comedy. As Ben Lyons lies dying, his wife of forty years, Rita, flips through decorating magazines, planning a living room makeover. Ben and Rita have been at war for many years and when they’re joined by their children, Lisa and Curtis, all efforts at a pleasant visit or a sentimental goodbye to the dying patriarch are soon abandoned. Terrible secrets & vicious accusations replace sentimental memories. Can the family take the first tentative steps toward new human connection? Performances Fri./Sat. 8 pm.; Sun. matinees at 2 pm. 21905 US 19 North, Clearwater, FL 33765 FYI: 727-437-2363
  • Thru March 26: Free Fall Theater’s Red Velvet: While this award-winning new play will transport you to Victorian London, the questions it raises about race, diversity and the role of the arts could not be more timely. This stirring drama transports audiences to the turbulent backstage world of London’s Theatre Royal in the early1800s. Edmund Kean, the greatest actor of his generation, can’t go on tonight as Othello, and his company is in disarray. A young American actor named Ira Aldridge arrives to step into the role—but no black man has ever played Othello on the English stage. His ground breaking performance upends stage tradition and changes the lives of everyone involved. Lolita Chakrabarti’s multi-award-winning play uncovers the fascinating true story of a pivotal figure in theatre history. Christopher Ruther-ford directs this stunningly theatrical production of a play that the London Telegraph called “informative, entertaining, and thought-provoking.”  FYI: 727-498-5205


  • March 11: St. Petersburg Second Saturday Artwalk: The Waterfront Arts District, Central Arts District, EDGE District, Grand Central District, and the Warehouse Arts District become one arts destination for the St. Petersburg Second Saturday Art Walk on March 11 from 5 to 9 pm.  You’ll get to see opening night where 40 galleries and studios premiere new works, with artists and demos on-site. Free ArtWalk trolleys encompass the arts districts. Free parking can be found on 1st Ave N and 1st Ave S from 15th St. to 30th St., The Clay Center of St. Petersburg, MGA Studios and the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum. Download the map and list of participants to plan your festive art evening at
  • Fourth Saturday Artwalk, Pinellas Park’s Creative District, 5851 Park Blvd.


Don’t forget about Tuesday’s Fresh Market and Swing Dancing Wednesday at the Casino!

  • Gulfport Artwalk 1st Friday and 3rd Saturday: On March 3rd, meet featured artist Lucas Pitzen who enjoys working with reclaimed and renewable wood products and transforming them into cutting boards to finely crafted tables. 3101 Beach Blvd.,
  • Gulfport Springfest (4/14-15): Gulfport’s 7.5 acre Clymer Park, along the Beach Blvd. transforms into an “enchanted village” inhabited by costumed faeries, sprites, gnomes, ogres and trolls. The event is free, family and pet-friendly, and open to the public. Activities and entertainment for all ages will be offered. Vendors bring live garden plants, garden art, flowers, herbs, Renaissance-period items, clothing, jewelry, art, hand-made crafts and more for your shopping pleasure. Assorted food and drink vendors will be on hand, and an enchanted beer garden offers adult beverages, with live music nearby, throughout the event. 550127th Avenue S.


Ringling College of Art & Design 2700 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota

  • The elegant Glass Masters of Venice continues thru March 25 with Barbara Basch’s docent tours Wed’s. 10:30 am.
  • Homage to Andy Warhol runs through March18. Organized and produced by Wu-Shan, Inc. (Jeff Gordon and Path Soong), this thought-provoking exhibition at the Ringling College of Art and Design features silkscreen prints and original recordings, ranging from spoken word to music and sound. It was created by a diverse roster of artists, writers and performers who knew, worked with, were associated with or were inspired by Andy Warhol. Included are Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, Ivan Karp, Billy Name, Ultra Violet, Lawrence Weiner, Carter Ratcliff, John Giorno, Vincent Freemont, Alexander Heinrici, Brigid Berlin, Christopher Makos, Yura Adams, Nat Finkelstein, Connie Beckley, Susan Breen, Path Soong, and Jeff Gordon. Jeff knew and admired Warhol, first conceptualized the idea of producing recordings (spoken word, sound pieces, music) by visual artists in the early ’80s, while he was the co-owner of the Greene Street Recording Studio. The exhibition juxtaposes each artist’s 12 x 12 inch (album sized) visual image with an audio work created in homage to Warhol. For instance, Patti Smith’s poem, “Edie,” muses on the life and death of  Warhol Superstar Edie Sedgwick. Nat Finkelstein’s screen printed photograph shows Warhol and Dylan in the Factory with one of Warhol’s Elvis paintings in the back-ground. In his song, “When I Paint My Masterpiece, Dylan critiques the Warhol ian notion of fame and success. Gordon’s screen print modifies one of Warhol’s Brillo Box sculptures as a visual analogy to his sound piece, which loops excerpts from a Warhol interview and lasts for the proverbial 15 minutes. Sony Music Entertainment sponsored the worldwide tour.


Capital Fundraising Campaign for Creative Clay: 

As Creative Clay enters its22nd year serving the Tampa Bay area through programs that make the arts accessible to all, the non-profit is looking to the future with an impending move, enhancement and expansion of programming, and the launch of “The 2017 Project: Securing Our Future. ”Donations to Creative Clay’s capital campaign will allow for increased quality programming, improved execution of services and an enhanced creative space that meets the needs of its artists as well as:

  • Raise $100,000 for our build out and renovations.
  • Increase the number of individuals the non-profit can serve as a result of gaining more physical space.
  • Allow for more programming to occur under one roof. renting space at an off-site location to accommodate classes of artists.
  • Allow for its “Around the World” Summer Camp to beheld on-site vs. an alternative location, and in an area specially designed for young campers, with dedicated lunch space and outdoor play area.
  • Additional ADA-approved restrooms.
  • In June, Creative Clay will move its headquarters form St. Petersburg’s EDGE District, to 1846 First Ave. S in the Grand Central District. This new space boasts an additional 1000 square feet more than their current location, allowing them to expand their Community Arts Program. FYI: CEO Kim Dohrman,

St. Petersburg Opera Guild’s Annual 45th High School Vocal Competition Winners: Remember these young talents who were part of the amazing eighteen high school singers from Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties. They competed before three adjudicators: Dr. Warren Jaworski, Associate Professor of Voice at USF; Ron Emery of Tampa and Tony Dillon who has appeared on many opera stages including St. Petersburg Opera.  Tony currently lives in Clearwater.

  • First Place Winner – Sarah Johnson, a resident of Largo, a home schooled sophomore is a vocal student of Linda Switzer of Tampa.
  • Second Place Winner -Amanda McAllister, a resident of St. Petersburg, is a senior at Gibbs HS.  She is a vocal student of Dawn Eubanks.
  • Third Place Winner – Julie LaPierre, a resident of Oldsmar, is a sophomore at Eastlake High School.  She is a vocal student of Linda Switzer.
  • Honorable Mentions: Cameryn Valiente of Blake HS in Tampa, and Tatiana Becklund of Eastlake High School in Oldsmar.  Palm Harbor Museum Re-Opens: If you like Heritage Village, you’ll want to take a road trip to see this jewel. With a beautiful facelift and refurbishing, this charming historical and heritage museum is better than ever. 2043 Curlew Rd. Palm Harbor

A Passion for Skincare

Beginning her career as a counter  manager for Clinique half a lifetime ago, Emma Heatherman developed a passion for skin care at an early age.  After seeing amazing results in her own skin by following a regimented skin care program, she researched performance ingredients and treatments while she lived in Europe and Asia. Once back in the United States, Emma studied and became a Licensed Medical Esthetician.  

Emma recently relocated her practice closer to the beaches with Mitzi at Looks and Company, The Salon, in the strip center at 2525 Pasadena Ave. S. on the causeway between South Pasadena and St. Pete Beach.  

Emma’s passion for skin care helps her  clients discover, reveal and maintain their own most beautiful skin. This is what drives her to stay informed on the latest, cutting edge techniques and  technology in the dynamic, ever changing field of skin-care. Specializing in Acne and Anti-Aging treatments, Emma embraces results-oriented skin care, including Oxygen Infusion Therapy and Phototherapy. 

Her certifications include: 

• Paramedical esthetics
• Advanced chemical peels
• Advanced microdermabrasion
Dermaplaning and ReJuvapen
• Collagen Induction Therapy
• European Facial Massage 

“It goes without saying that one can’t reverse in a single visit a lifetime of little care, but the second best time to start taking care of your body’s largest organ is NOW”, says Emma.

“It is amazing how far we can get within a week or two, and many clients only need occasional treatments after learning how to nurture and protect their own skin with the top quality products I can recommend. That is why  I have openings for new clients now.”  For a free consultation and your first step towards your most beautiful skin today,  call Emma direct at (727) 430-4373. Be sure to tell her you read about her in Paradise NEWS.  

Looks & Company, The Salon
2525 Pasadena Avenue S.,
South Pasadena, FL 33707

Article by Peter A. Roos

Third Annual DTSP Sunshine Award Winners Announced

More than 100 people gathered at the Museum of History to enjoy Hops & Props hors ‘oeuvres and drinks. Deputy Mayor Dr. Kanika Tomalin announced the winners, culled from more than 2,000 nominating votes, acknowledging individuals and business who make DTSP a great live/work/play neighborhood. Special thanks to our Annual Sponsor Smith & Associates Real Estate For more information or to join SPDNA visit

Things to do: Second Saturday ArtWalk
Casual dining: Moon Under Water
Fine dining: Parkshore Grill
Drinks: Green Bench Brewing Company
Shop: Savory Spice Shop
Arts & Culture: Museum of Fine Arts
Business – Small:UPS Store
Business – Large: Publix
Downtown Hero:  John Collins, St. Petersburg Arts Alliance

2016-2017 Preservation Award Winners Announced at Awards Celebration

On February 8th, during a fun & exciting evening, SPP announced the 2016-17 Preservation Award recipients. A total of 22 awards were presented, ranging from the President’s Award given to City Council member and preservation stalwart Darden Rice (pictured) to the Award of Honor – Living Traditions given to the Sunken Gardens Forever Foundation for their Flamingos Forever project! Click here to view the complete list of award winners. To see photos of each, just click here! Some of the winners are noted below.

Two early 1950s gas stations recently given a new use received awards. Both are in the Grand Central Business District – Urban Comfort Restaurant & Brewery at 2601 Central Ave. and PomPom’s Tea House & Sandwicheria at 2950 Central Ave! These two projects show that preservation is good for business! Across the street from PomPom’s is a past award winner the Craftsman House!

Two awards were given for projects along 22nd St. S. – Elihu & Carolyn Brayboy received SPP’s Award of Honor for Contribution to Neighborhood Preservation. They are best known for opening Chief’s Creole Cafe (901 22nd St. S.) in a historic grocery store building but they are also leaders in revitalizing the “Deuces”, 22nd St. S. by reusing historic buildings. The other award went to Dwayne Barnes who is now the proud owner of Elma’s Cafe at 1235 22nd St. S., in the building that had been Yates Barber Shop for 45 years. The barbershop had been run by Dwayne’s uncle, Joe Yates!

Several outstanding homes were recognized with awards, including the intriguing mid-century home of Gerry Broughman – a Glenn Johnson designed Birdcage home, at 721 Pinellas Point Dr. S. In the early 1950’s, Johnson designed a group of these unusual homes, calling them Visionaire homes.

Another standout home is the 1923 Sargent residence, presently owned by Sharon Winters & Kendall Reid, at 806 18th Ave. NE. It is an exquisitely built airplane bungalow form of home, recently lovingly restored and designated as a local landmark by Sharon & Kendall.

Would you believe the home pictured to the right could be picked up & moved! Ken & Elizabeth Grimes were presented an Award of Honor for Landmark Restoration or Rehabilitation for the “Monticello”. The Grimes’ family saved the home from demolition by having it moved from its original downtown location to the corner of 8th Ave N. & 3rd St. and then beautifully restoring the home into a single family residence.

One multi-family residential renovation undertaken by Bob Jeffrey received an award. It is at the corner of Burlington Ave. N. & 20th St., in Historic Kenwood. Bob is a previous award winner! You have to appreciate his sense of humor – the more he got into the project the more work he found it needed and the more money it was costing, resulting in him calling the project, “Costa Lotta Apartments” – but its a grand success and fully rented!

Our city has a wonderful collection of historic churches. One that is often overlooked is the 1922 Bethel AME Church at 912 3rd Ave. N. The church received an Award of Honor for Preservation Technology and Craftsmanship. As a city landmark, the church was able to secure a state grant used to retain All Trades Historical Restoration to help ensure that the church building and its beautiful windows will be here for the future.

The St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club was an easy choice for the Award of Honor Keep St. Pete Special Award. The Club contributes to our vibrant and important heritage tourism business while doing a wonderful job of maintaining their historic building and grounds. The Friday Shuffle keeps St. Pete special by creating a multi-generational experience that you simply cannot get anywhere else!

And special thanks to Steve Quillian, who received the Award of Honor Hands on Preservation. Steve is an energetic reuse advocate and wood window restoring guru! Steve also annually puts on an exciting Historic Homes Workshop (this past weekend). The Workshop was an Awards Celebration Demens level sponsor. If you missed last weekend’s workshop, check out the monthly First Friday window workshops.