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Plant City


Known best for its agricultural roots, Plant City plays host each year to thousands of visitors intent on tasting the sweet nectar of homegrown strawberries drowning famous shortcakes at the annual Florida Strawberry Festival. While the plump red berries are king, fish farms, blueberries, ornamental plants and cattle ranching are close competitors for producing some of Florida's finest farm-to-table specimens. City leaders are also eyeing 85 acres south of downtown for a new Midtown featuring residential, office and retail spaces, anchored by a public green.  

Features

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Going carless in Tampa: HCC professor finds commuting by bus works for him

Dustin Lemke of Tampa likes to challenge himself. These challenges range from adventures like skydiving to personal tests like not purchasing any clothes for a year. A favorite challenge? Ditch the personal car. See how well he does.

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If a hurricane threatens, what to expect on Tampa Bay Area roads, bus routes

Emergency planners and responders prepare for the next hurricane to strike Florida, but only you can plan ahead for yourself and your family to evacuate when necessary. Read what's new with Tampa Bay area roads and public buses.

Logo for Go Hillsborough

What's next for local transportation? Kevin O'Hare, Tampa

A half-cent-per-dollar sales tax referendum to support building and maintaining roads as well as public transit will be on Hillsborough County ballots come 2016 if all goes as planned. Observer Kevin O'Hare suggests the plan could be much bolder. 

Instruments of Change.

For Good: Instruments of Change helps kids thrive

Putting a musical instrument in a child's hands and teaching him or her to play it proves the right formula to keep struggling kids in Tampa Bay Area schools and help them thrive in academics, local nonprofit Instruments of Change demonstrates.

Access to Capital winner Tony Selvaggio.

Tampa startup wins $10,000 to launch e-recycling in local schools

Tony Selvaggio’s startup company Scratch on Spot won $10,000 at Hillsborough County’s first “Access to Capital” summit, which included a business pitch competition presented by private investing group New World Angels. Selvaggio will use the funds to place e-recycling bins in area schools.

MC Film in Ybor city.

Fight for equal rights gains ground in Hillsborough County, Tampa Bay

Domestic partners, including same-sex couples, can register to receive partner rights in Hillsborough County beginning in early 2015. Tampa Bay area neighbors, Pinellas and Sarasota County, adopted similar domestic partnership registries in 2013.

Green Acre Aquaponics fish.

Aquaponics: Sustainable Fish Farming Thrives In Florida

Where does the fish on your plate come from? Eco-friendly fish farming known as aquaponics continues to pick up steam in the Tampa Bay area. Experts say the emerging industry is growing fast.

Florida peaches. - Julie Branaman

Florida's Peach Industry Grows Sweet And Sassy

In Florida agriculture, citrus has long been king. But take a closer look at the Sunshine State's newest emerging cash crop: the princely peach. Experts say it soon could become a $100 million industry and provide a tasty boon for the state's economy.

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Q&A: Local Startup Leaders Talk Entrepreneurship

Three leaders in Tampa Bay's startup community share their vision for the future of Hillsborough County's new Entrepreneur Collaborative Center in this Q&A with 83 Degrees Media.

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Foggy On Details? USF Researchers Patent Formula To Enhance Brainpower

A nutritional supplement developed at the University of South Florida that combines the mind-building strengths of blueberries, green tea and more is finding scientific confirmation and a place on supermarket shelves across the nation. 

Dale Gordon.

Q&A: Dale Gordon, Tampa Hillsborough Film & Digital Media

Bollywood arrives in Tampa in late April. BLUE Ocean gets here in November. But what will it take beyond global film festivals  to become the next film and digital media production destination? Read how Tampa Hillsborough Film Commissioner Dale Gordon sees the challenges and opportunities.

Ishmael Lopez attends the Black, Brown and College Bound Summit. - Julie Branaman

Black, Brown And College Bound: On The Road to Success

Ishmael Lopez and Java Royal, students at Hillsborough Community College, appreciate Latino and black men who serve as male role models so much that both already serve as mentors to pay it forward to the next generation.

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The Aquaculture Evolution: Not Your Grandpa's Guppies

Central Florida is the center of the nation's tropical fish farming universe and Mike Drawdy, a third-generation producer, aims to use technology to reclaim the local industry's place on the world stage. Fancy fish, it turns out, swim spectacularly through cyberspace.

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Hillsborough County Seeds Local Startup Culture

Hillsborough County Commissioners set aside $2 million to help nurture Tampa's fast-growing startup community. Where's the money going?

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Getting To The Heart Of Advertising In Tampa Bay

Young professionals working within the advertising industry in Tampa Bay pool passion and energy to volunteer free services that make a difference for marketing a local nonprofit each year.
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