October 30, 2003
Tampa Bay Online Edition

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Memories From an Aircraft That Changed the World

By Mitch Traphagen

Part Two of Two

SARASOTA - Many of the people standing next to the B-17 had to be playing hooky from work or school. It was the middle of a beautiful autumn day in the middle of the week at the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport. Parked next to rows of sleek Lear Jets at Jones Aviation was a relic from the past. A relic that many credit with changing the face of the Second World War. . More

Mitch Traphagen Photo/Photos Courtesy of Gene Saur

The Flag Goes Up at SCC Fire Station 28

By Mitch Traphagen

A decade or more of hard work and commitment paid off on Oct. 24 as Hillsborough Countyís newest fire station was officially opened. The $1.9 million dollar facility includes three bays and one of the tallest ladder trucks in the county.  More

Mitch Traphagen Photo

Young Champions of the Dirt

By Mitch Traphagen

It takes a moment to discover that the two young men from Riverview are not ordinary children. They are conversational and they are confident. And while they may not be tall enough to operate a soda machine, they have already proven themselves to be champions. More

Mitch Traphagen Photo

Ground is Broken on Gibsonton Rec Center

Hillsborough County Commissioner Kathy Castor helped local volunteers and dignitaries break ground on the new Gibsonton Recreation Center on Oct. 23. Castor, who was only recently elected, drew laughs by telling the assembled crowd that she really didnít have anything to do with the project. She then stood back while the residents who worked towards the new recreation center introduced themselves. The new recreation center will replace the Gardenville Recreation Center, which was formerly the Gardenville Elementary School. The $1.2 million 11,000 square foot facility is expected to open within a year. The old recreation center, built in 1926, will also remain as part of the complex. Pictured above, Castor joins community volunteers in the ceremonial groundbreaking.

Mitch Traphagen Photo

A Night of Spooky Stories in Apollo Beach

Witches, super heroes, walking skeletons and even soccer balls with eyes roamed the hallways of Apollo Beach Elementary School on October 24 for Spooky Story Night. Students and parents were able to enjoy a range of activities from "Not Too Scary Stories" to Halloween performances. The fun evening at school was all topped off with hot dogs and soft drinks. The Ruskin Junior Womenís League donated pumpkins that were decorated by the students and on display for the evening. The League also donated pumpkins to Ruskin, Wimauma and Cypress Creek Elementary Schools.

Mitch Traphagen Photo


Prep Football Wrap Up

The East Bay Buccaneers took on the Plant City Dolphins at East Bay High School in Gibsonton on Oct. 25. The Junior Varsity and Varsity Bucs brought home victories winning 30-20 and 33-0 respectively. The teams, which also include Flag, Midget, Super Midget and Cheerleading, are a part of a youth football league designed to promote the welfare of south county children. The organization is open to children ages four to 15 and serves more than 360 boys and girls. Pictured above, the Junior Varsity Bucs heavily defend a Plant City Dolphin receiver and thwart a pass attempt.

Area Prep Football Results

Area High School Football Schedules

Mitch Traphagen Photo

In The Archives:

Finding Florida:  Fire up the motorcycle and join the Observer News for a different type of travel story.  Tourist motels, road kill and a whole lot of heaven awaits.

Part One:  Searching From the Beginning
Part Two:  Heading Home
Part Three:  Back to the Islands

The Changing Face of South Hillsborough:  The rumors are flying about several big box retailers moving into south county. The facts, however, are few. Yet one in every ten new jobs created in the entire nation came from the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan area. South county communities are joining forces to become a strong player in that prospering market. How will all of the changes effect our communities and area businesses and what can south county shoppers expect from the future?

The three-part series is available on the web:

Part One - Welcome to SouthShore
Part Two - Meet the Neighbors
Part Three - It's a Bird!  It's a Plane!  It's a Home Depot!




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