Local beaches were packed as COVID-19 scare sends folks outside – News965

More than 164,000 people worldwide are infected with coronavirus, which causes COVID-19, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the outbreak in the United States as schools, businesses and public events are closed or canceled. TheCenters for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the United Stateshere. Live updates for Monday, March 16, continue below: Kentucky to close restaurants, bars Update 10:40 a.m. EDT March 16: Gov. Andy Beshear of Kentucky announced Monday that he plans to order the closure of in-person service at restaurants and bars statewide to stymie the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus. It is our civic duty to do everything that we can to make sure that we are living up to our patriotic duty and that we are following all the instructions that we get, Beshear said Monday at a news conference. What we are doing is making sure that we take aggressive action.' As of Monday, Beshear said 21 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the state with patients ranging in age from 27 to 80. One person, a 66-year-old Bourbon County man, has died of coronavirus in the state, according to the governor. Folks we are going to have more cases, and weve got to expect more cases, Beshear said. White House Easter Egg Roll cancelled Update 10:20 a.m. EDT March 16: Officials announced the cancellation Monday of the annual White House Easter Egg Roll due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. The health and safety of all Americans must be the first priority, especially right now, first lady Melania Trump said Monday in a statement. I deeply regret this cancellation, but we need to make difficult decisions in the short-term to ensure a healthy country for long-term. During this time, I encourage everyone to listen to state and local officials, and follow CDC guidelines in order to help protect the health and well-being of everyone. Womens tennis tour suspended until May Update 9:50 a.m. EDT March 16: Officials with the Womens Tennis Association announced the organization was suspending planned tournaments due to the threat posed by the 2019 novel coronavirus. Due to the ongoing global coronavirus outbreak, the WTA tournaments in Stuttgart (Germany), Istanbul and Prague will not be held as scheduled, officials with the organization said Monday in a statement. We will make a decision in the week ahead regarding the remaining WTA European clay court events and will continue to monitor this situation closely and its impact on the 2020 WTA Tour season. The WTA Tour was scheduled to resume May 2. US stock trading resumes Update 9:45 a.m. EDT March 16: Trading has resumed on the New York Stock Exchange after flailing numbers triggered a temporary trading halt known as a circuit breaker Monday morning. US stocks plunge at open, triggering another trading halt Update 9:35 a.m. EDT March 16: U.S. stocks plunged 8.1% at open, triggering a pause of trading Monday morning as investors worried over the economic impact of the 2019 novel coronavirus. The pause, known as a circuit breaker, began at 9:30 a.m. and was expected to last until 9:45 a.m. Michigan to close bars, restaurants statewide Monday Update 9:30 a.m. EDT March 16: Bars and restaurants across Michigan will be ordered to close beginning Monday at 3 p.m.,the Detroit Free Press reported, citing the governors office. Several other states have taken similar measures to curb the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus, including Ohio, Massachusetts, Illinois and California. Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee said Sunday that he plans to sign a similar order closing bars and limiting restaurants to take-out only. US immigration hearings delayed Update 9:15 a.m. EDT March 16: Officials with the Justice Departments Executive Office for Immigration Review announced the postponement Sunday of immigration hearings amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. Authorities said Sunday in a tweet that master calendar dates for people who are not currently detained have been delayed. The hearings can include dozens of people in a single courtroom. There are 68 immigration courts nationwide. James Bond actress Olga Kurylenko says she has coronavirus Update 8:50 a.m. EDT March 16: The actress who starred opposite Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace,' a 2008 addition to the James Bond film franchise, said on social media Sunday that she had been diagnosed with COVID-19. Ive actually been ill for almost a week now. Fever and fatigue are my main symptoms, Kurylenko wrote in an Instagram post. Take care of yourself and do take this seriously!' Kennedy Space Center temporarily closes amid outbreak Update 7:50 a.m. EDT March 16:The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is closing temporarily starting today,CNN is reporting. It will remain closed until further notice,according to the complexs website The move comes in response to the prevention and control of COVID-19,'said the center, which is located inMerritt Island, Florida. When it is deemed safe for guests to return, the entire facility will be cleaned and sanitized prior to re-opening, Chief Operating Officer Therrin Protzesaid in a statement. This will include Kennedy Space Center tour buses, all attractions, eateries and theaters at the main campus and at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. Chick-fil-A closes dining room seating at restaurants Update 6:09 a.m. EDT March 16:Chick-fil-A announced Sunday night that its is closing dining room seating in its restaurants. As we navigate the evolving impact of coronavirus on our communities, we are temporarily closing our dining room seating to help limit person-to-person contact,the company, which is based inAtlanta, said in a statement. Officials said some locations may only offer service through the drive-thru windows while others may be able to offer takeout, delivery or mobile order options. Its unclear which stores will allow which options. We know these are challenging times, but well continue to do our best to serve you,the company said. More than 164,000 cases, 6,400 deaths reported worldwide Update 5:34 a.m. EDT March 16:More than 164,000 coronavirus cases and 6,400 deaths have been reported worldwide,the World Health Organization reported Monday. Among individual countries,China topped the list with more than 81,000 cases, followed byItaly with over 24,700 cases. Disney temporarily closing North American stores, hotels Update 4:14 a.m. EDT March 16:Disney announced early Monday that it is temporarily closing allNorth American Disney stores starting Tuesday. In an overnight tweet, the company added that it is closing all of its owned and operated locations at Downtown Disney inAnaheim, California, and Disney Springs inOrlando, Florida, beginning Tuesday. Individual tenants will make decisions on whether to continue or adjust operations,the tweet read. Disney also will close its owned and operated hotels at its Walt Disney World Resort and Vero Beach Resort inFlorida starting at 5 p.m. Friday. We will continue to monitor the situation and maintain regular contact with the appropriate officials and health experts,the company said. Peace Corps suspends volunteer activities, announces evacuations Update 12:36 a.m. EDT March 16:The Peace Corps announced late Sunday that it has decided to temporarily suspend all ... operations globally and evacuate all of our volunteers,according to a statement. As you know, we recently evacuated volunteers fromChina andMongolia due to the COVID-19 outbreak and related travel constraints and school closings, Peace Corps Director Jody Olsensaid in a letter posted on the organizations website. Further evacuations are now under way at several posts. Unfortunately, it has become clear in the last 48 hours that numerous posts must follow suit. The Peace Corps headquarters will remain open, the statement said.

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Local beaches were packed as COVID-19 scare sends folks outside - News965

Event cancellations in the Bay Area lead many to busy beaches – FOX 13 Tampa Bay

Busy beaches amid COVID-19 concerns

Jordan Bowen rpeorts

TREASURE ISLAND, Fla. - With schools closed, events canceled, and games postponed, manyBay Area beaches are keeping busy despite coronavirus concerns.

Sun and fun were on the minds of Bay Area beach-goers on Saturday in the wake of event cancellations. Dozens of big events scheduled for this weekend were called off amid growing concern over the spread of coronavirus in mass gathering settings.

"I'm a big sports fan. I'm not happy about it. I understand the problems that are happening," beach-goer Jayson Armstrong said.

The world of professionals sports is currently in the midst of a major time out with all leagues postponing their seasons. More than 2.7 million students in Florida's public schools are also feeling the effects after being forced to take a 2-week recess.

"I was supposed to go to Reggae Rise-up and I don't know, I was bummed," beach-goer Erica Pougnet said.

Pougnet is among many taking to the surf and sand in the wake of mass cancellations. This means a boost in business for this beach concession stands on Treasure Island.

"There are people everywhere. The parking lot has been full since 9:30 this morning so it doesn't seem like people are doing too much to avoid being out in public," concession attendant Holly Leonard said.

Beach-goers are hoping the cancellations help the crisis stabilize at a faster pace so other big events planned in the months ahead aren't affected.

"I hope this is over and done with as soon as possible because everyone is just panicky and in panic mode and it's just kinda crazy," Pougnet said.

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Event cancellations in the Bay Area lead many to busy beaches - FOX 13 Tampa Bay

People flock to beaches as other places across Tampa Bay shut down – WTSP.com

CLEARWATER, Fla. With nearly every major event canceled or postponed this weekend, the beach became a go-to spot Saturday.

As parts of the world came to a stop, the pace at Clearwater Beach stayed steady, with full parking lots and tourists soaking up the sun.

We were supposed to go to Disney, actually, the day they closed it, Chuck Smithson told 10News.

He and his family are in the area from Ohio and headed to the beach when they found out the park was closed something thats happened only a handful of times in the parks roughly 50-year history.

Im shocked the beaches arent shut down. I mean we need something to do, other than sit inside, but Im shocked the beaches arent shut down, he said.

Avoiding large gatherings can help manage the pandemic. Fewer people in one place can lead to fewer people getting sick and help limit the overall burden on the health care system.

We take precautions, we have hand sanitizer on hand, we wipe everything down, we try to stay away from most people, he said.

Local businesses on the beach said they were busy over the weekend, but said they didn't think it would last.

Were already getting cancellations from travelers who are scared to get on planes, Gregg Corder with Charter Boats Two Cs said.

RELATED: Events and locations in Tampa Bay shut down by coronavirus

RELATED: Disney World Resort closing due to coronavirus concerns

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People flock to beaches as other places across Tampa Bay shut down - WTSP.com

Drive-through coronavirus testing starts Monday in West Palm Beach – WPTV.com


Palm Beach County's first free drive-through testing service for coronavirus opened on Monday morning.

FoundCare, Inc., a non-profit Federally Qualified Health Center, has set up an outpatient drive-through testing station in the parking lot of its location at 2330 S. Congress Avenue in West Palm Beach.


The site, which opened at 10 a.m. Monday, is offering free COVID-19 tests for Palm Beach County residents.

The service will be offered on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and hours may be adjusted based on needs and supplies. Testing will be conducted by trained FoundCare staff members.

Prior to being tested, patients need to call 561-967-0365.

During the call, each patient will be asked basic screening questions about their symptoms and other criteria for the test. The phone line will be manned for screening and appointments weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Patients will be asked if they meet any of the following testing criteria:

"Patients typically present with fever, cough, and possibly shortness of breath," said Dr. Oneka Marriott, Chief Medical Officer for FoundCare. "Most cases have presented with mild symptoms. Patients with underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, chronic kidney disease, immunocompromised states, or those greater than 65 years of age with fever or symptoms of cough or shortness of breath may experience more severe and life-threatening outcomes of COVID-19 infection."

At the testing site, patients must have their patient code and an appointment in order to be tested. No one will be tested without an appointment.

While the patient remains in their car, they'll need to provide proper identification and contact information, including a valid phone number. FoundCare staff will safely store the patients information, collect the specimen using a test kit, and send the specimen to a qualified lab.

According to Dr. Marriott, samples will be sent to either a commercial lab like Quest or LabCorp, or the Florida Department of Health's Bureau of Public Health Laboratories.

The patient will be instructed to self-quarantine at home while waiting for the test results, which can take 48 to 72 hours. FoundCare staff will contact the patient with the results as soon as they are available.

While FoundCare is performing the test for free, the laboratories may generate a separate bill for patients for that service.

In Martin County, a drive-through coronavirus test site opened on Saturday at Cleveland Clinic Martin North Hospital, located at 200 SE Hospital Avenue.

For more information about the drive-through testing, click here.

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Drive-through coronavirus testing starts Monday in West Palm Beach - WPTV.com

Coronavirus Update: Jones Beach Eyed As Possible Drive-Thru Testing Site As Number Of Cases On Long Island Grows – CBS New York

MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) The number of coronavirus cases continues to grow on Long Island as families strive to keep life as normal as possible.

Were just trying to come up with something to keep these kids busy, said Massapequa resident Jacqueline Martin.

Playing tag and catch on a ball field was not the first choice for some of these kids and parents, reports CBS2s Dave Carlin.

The Martin family planned on being inside the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, but the Jurassic World Live Tour was canceled because of coronavirus concerns.

We assumed it would happen, we knew it was coming but we were looking forward to it, said Martin.

In Nassau County, the number has grown by 20 overnight, bringing the total of confirmed cases to 70, with more tests being processed. Ten are hospitalized, with three in critical condition including a 57-year-old and a 76-year-old.

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said Saturday she expects the number of confirmed cases to continue to grow.

Nassau County has a hotline up and running (516) 227-9570 and is operational seven days a week during business hours.

Curran noted that Friday New Rochelle had launched the states first drive-thru testing facility, and she was looking forward to replicating that. On Saturday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that Jones Beach was being looked at as a possible drive-thru testing site.

I am confident that drive-thru testing is not too far in our future, Curran said.

Curran added that officials are in discussions with hospitals about possibly setting up tents for testing.

Curran said that as more testing is deployed, the number of positive cases will grow. Curran reminded people it is also allergy season.

Officials continued to reiterate the importance of people staying home if theyre sick.

Youve got to stay home if youre symptomatic. Youve got to call your health care provider, she said.

Officials said people under mandatory quarantine are checked on to make sure they are physically staying put. They could be confined if they are found to be violating it, officials said, adding that no one under mandatory quarantine has yet violated it.

We can not stress this enough: If you are in quarantine, you must stay in quarantine, Curran said. Containment is the key to preventing this from spreading.

Nassau County officials say theyve delivered a lot of food to people under quarantine.

Curran said officials are seeing a concerning increase in incidents of bullying, particularly on social media, of children who are in quarantine.

I think we all need to not stigmatize, blame, Curran said. Nip it in the bud were all in this together and if we start attacking each other, this is not a good thing.

Curran said the protocol as regarding schools remains to close it for 24 hours if a positive case is found.

The CDC has a mass pandemic plan. And closing schools is one of the very last measures. Science has shown us what measures work in preventing the spread of diseases and what has not. And closing schools in a pandemic has actually been scientifically proven to be one of the least valuable things because now students are home. And somebodys got watch them. If a parent has to go to work, maybe now theyre with a grandparent that they could be exposing that they would not be, Nassau County Health Commissioner Lawrence Eisenstein said Friday. We may get to that point, but there is a scientific reason for the decisions that we make.

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Coronavirus Update: Jones Beach Eyed As Possible Drive-Thru Testing Site As Number Of Cases On Long Island Grows - CBS New York

Boris Johnson’s hero is the mayor who kept the beaches open in Jaws. That’s fine by me – The Guardian

The coronavirus has turned the UK into an outlier. The rest of the world has seemingly gone into lockdown, shutting schools and public transport in a desperate bid to quell the pandemic. But Boris Johnson has gone in a different direction. According to him, the UK is business as usual.

But what prompted such a policy? Is he privy to more advanced scientific knowledge than all the other countries? Is he really such a vocal proponent of herd immunity? Or is there something else going on? Perhaps to find out, we should travel back to 2006, when Johnson told an audience that the real hero of Jaws is the mayor.

Ah, Mayor Larry Vaughn, Amitys foolhardy leader who orders the beach to remain open despite overwhelming evidence that theres a massive shark in the water determined to eat everyone. Now everything suddenly makes sense.

But still, at least Vaughn is finally getting his dues. Without him, Jaws would simply be a film about a policeman who spots a shark, imposes a stringent set of beachside social distancing rules and then kills the shark. But Vaughn is the necessary sand in the ointment. He can only see the potential economic losses caused by a beach closure, and pushes on against all arguments. As you can see, its a beautiful day, he tells the media at one point. The beaches are opened, and people are having a wonderful time. Vaughn is the entire reason why Jaws became an enduring classic.

And yet, until now, the cultural impact of Vaughn has been minimal. True, in 2013 the comedian Howard Kremer released a song celebrating Larry Vaughns impressive the-show-must-go-on attitude (Only three people got eaten / The rest had a great season / Cos of Larry Vaughn). And, true, Boris Johnson is a self-confessed Vaughnaholic. But thats about the extent of it.

Looking back, Vaughn had three things going for him. The first, obviously, was his never-say-die attitude towards deadly shark attacks. The second was his incredible taste in blazers. This, remember, was a man so dedicated to his role as the mayor of a seaside town that he literally walked around in a jacket covered in little tiny anchors. Whatever you think of the mans policies, you have to admire his style. I have for some years been a member of a Facebook group devoted to discussions of Vaughns anchor jacket. Paul F Tompkins once commissioned an imitation suit and the only thing stopping me from doing the same is my increasing suspicion that the money would be better spent on long-life food to feed my children when the coronavirus inevitably mutates and our quarantine period becomes indefinite.

The third thing is Vaughns longevity. Youd think that, in a fair and just society, he would have been removed from office the moment the people of Amity caught wind of his preposterous self-interest in the face of disaster. But no. Do me a favour and watch Jaws 2. Its set a few years after the devastating attacks of the original, but guess whos still mayor? Thats right, Larry Vaughn. Better yet, despite even more overwhelming evidence that another shark is terrorising the coastline, Vaughn still continues to frustrate all of Brodys plans. The electorate, it seems, holds a lot of stock in Vaughns total refusal to believe in the existence of sharks.

Look, nobody is saying that Vaughn was perfect. In his ability to willingly send townsfolk to their deaths for short-term financial gain, some might argue that he was actually something of a villain. But to me, he is a figure of ultimate dignity. Was he a good man? No. Did he do his best? No. Is it a good thing that our prime minister is repeatedly being compared to him during a once-a-century global health crisis? No. But did he wear a nice jacket with some anchors on it? Yes. Yes, he did.

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Boris Johnson's hero is the mayor who kept the beaches open in Jaws. That's fine by me - The Guardian

2 men shot in North Long Beach, police investigating it as gang-related – Long Beach Post

Two men were hospitalized in serious condition after they were shot early this morning in North Long Beach, authorities said.

Police responded to the shooting at about 3:44 a.m. on Sunday, March 15 in the 400 block of East Mountain View St., in the Addams neighborhood just west of the Carmelitos Housing Project.

When officers arrived they located two victims at a residence, said Long Beach police spokesman Lt. James Richardson.

One man was wounded in his upper body and the other in his lower body, Richardson said.

Its unclear if they were shot inside or outside the residence.

Detectives responded to the shooting, which is being investigated as gang-related.

Long Beach policedefinegang-related crime as any crime committed for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with any criminal streetgang.

No further details were immediately available.

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2 men shot in North Long Beach, police investigating it as gang-related - Long Beach Post

Watch The Late Layne Staley Performing With TOOL On A Beach In Oahu, 1993 – Metal Injection.net

The footage of the late Layne Staley performing with Tool during the first Big Mele festival on Oahu in 1993 has some interesting back story, as well as a poignant flash-forward moment featuring Tool vocalist Maynard Keenan sharing the stage with Staley's former Alice in Chains bandmates in 2005.

Both bands got to know each other while on the Lollapalooza tour in the summer of 1993, and Layne would end up spending time taking over vocals for Keenan during Tool's set. He and Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine used to joke about which one of them was "more metal." When he wasn't performing, Layne spent most of his time hanging out with the members of Babes in Toyland in their dressing room as they were pretty much the only band drinking and partying on the tour. There is also an interesting story told by former AIC tour manager Baldy (Todd Shuss) about Layne and Maynard getting drunk at an after-hours bar in Atlanta during which they stopped talking to each other and passed notes back and forth instead. If you know anything about Alice in Chains, one thing should be pretty clear: Everybody likes Layne Staley.

Tool would head to Oahu following the conclusion of Lollapalooza to play the Mele Festival on August 15th with Fishbone (who also played Lollapalooza '93), Primus, Stone Temple Pilots, and Violent Femmes. The question here is, why exactly was Layne in Hawaii? It's not entirely clear, but given it's proximity to Seattle, it's not hard to imagine Staley hopped on a plane and showed up to jam with his Tool pals. Alice in Chains didn't have a show scheduled until August 17th in Dallas, so technically, he was commitment-free.

At any rate, during the Lollapalooza tour, Layne liked to take over Maynard's spot when Tool performed their 1992 song "Opiate." And the logical way to one-up that milestone up is to do the same thing on a beach in Oahu. Like the waves of the Hawaiian islands, the footage is a bit gnarly as it's not professionally shot, but it's good enough thanks to the sound quality of this star-crossed event. Following Layne's tragic death in 2002, Maynard would pen a song with his other band, A Perfect Circle, which appeared on their 2003 album, Thirteenth Step. In an interview with MTV's Kurt Loder, Maynard spoke about the album noting some of its references to addiction and recovery were a direct reflection on his friendship with Staley. Here's Maynard's heartbreaking response to Loder asking him if he "saw things coming" with Layne:

"Yeah, absolutely. But there was nothing you could do, and it's very difficult to understand. Being a friend to someone like Layne, it really does your head in. I don't understand it, but I do want to help other people who are on the borderline, who might hear (a song) and go, "You know what, I think I want to try to live."

Staley would perform "Opiate" with Tool once more, this time in Layne's home state of Washington during Tool's show in Bremerton on May 28th, 1994. Following Staley's death in 2002 Maynard would join the members of AIC for a benefit show in 2005 to raise funds for the victims of the devastating tsunami that struck Sumatra, Indonesia. A surprise guest at the show, Maynard would perform Man in the Box (Facelift, 1990) and Them Bones" (Dirt, 1994).

Footage and audio from all performances can be viewed/heard below.

Layne Staley performing with Tool at the Big Mele festival on August 15th, 1993.

Maynard on vocals with Alice in Chains for "Man in the Box" 2005.

"Them Bones" with Maynard on vocals.

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Watch The Late Layne Staley Performing With TOOL On A Beach In Oahu, 1993 - Metal Injection.net

Man flew to Palm Beach after positive coronavirus test: reports | TheHill – The Hill

A passenger flying from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City to Palm Beach, Fla., has been diagnosed with coronavirus, according to media reports.

Theindividual was on a JetBlue plane with 114 passengers that landed Wednesday evening, with officials telling passengers to remain on the tarmac for several hours as health officials spoke to travelers on board, according to ABC News.

One of the passengers on the planesaidthe person diagnosed with coronavirus may have received the news before the plane departed, according toWPTV in West Palm Beach, Fla.

"The person across the way from me was taken to the back of the plane. He was wearing masks and gloves. His wife was sitting in the same row as me and mentioned to others that he wasn't feeling well. She said he had gotten a phone call with his test results right before we had taken off, implying that he had a positive test but not actually saying it," passenger Scott Rodman told WPTV.

People sitting adjacent to the passenger who tested positive for the virus were offered information about monitoring their health.

Workers for the airline sterilized the containment area where passengers left the plane. In New York, JetBlue workers also conducted additional cleaning of the gate from which the plane departed, according to the Port Authority in New York.

"The health and safety of our customers and crewmembers is our first priority. In reviewing last nights event, we determined the customer boarded our flight knowing he was awaiting results for a coronavirus test without disclosing it to anyone at," JetBlue said in a statement.

The statement continued, "Consistent with CDC guidance, we ask all customers who are not feeling well, who believe they may have coronavirus, or who are awaiting test results to avoid travel until they are cleared by a medical professional. Last nights event put our crewmembers, customers, and federal and local officials in an unsettling situation that could have easily been avoided, and as such, this customer will not be permitted to fly on JetBlue in the future."

In the U.S., there are about 1,323 confirmed cases and 38 deaths from COVID-19, according to the ABC report.

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Man flew to Palm Beach after positive coronavirus test: reports | TheHill - The Hill

Clearwater Has Much More To Offer Than Just World-Class Beaches – Forbes

Clearwater Beach has consistently been ranked the #1 beach in the United States - though the city ... [+] has far more to offer than just its shoreline.

Its no secret that Clearwater is home to some of the nations most picturesque beaches - the soft white sand shore was ranked as the best beach in the nation by the 2019 TripAdvisor Travelers Choice Awards. While the citys natural features are common knowledge, few are aware of the many other gems waiting to be discovered by unsuspecting visitors. Namely, spectacular fresh seafood, outdoor adventure opportunities, and pristine undeveloped islands can all be found in and around Clearwater.

Given the citys reputation, its easy to understand how the shore came to be lined with such luxurious resorts and restaurants. For those in search of a truly opulent experience, Opal Sands Resort stands out as one of the beachs best. Consider a stay in the plush Premium Suite, an immense room complete with full kitchen, king sized bed, and sweeping balcony overlooking the picturesque shore below. Those wishing to escape the sun for a day can book an appointment at the full-service spa, where massages, body scrubs, pedicures, and a wide range of other treatments are available. For a spectacular sunset experience, grab dinner and tiki drinks at Sandbar, the propertys outdoor restaurant, and be sure to end your night with a relaxing dip in the hot tub.

Humans aren't the only inhabitants in the area - bottlenose dolphins can often be spotted surfacing ... [+] by the beach.

Perched on the Gulf of Mexico, Clearwater is the ideal destination for seafood enthusiasts, with a wide variety of dining venues ranging from upscale to casual. One particular operation has been a prominent fixture of the coast since 1926: Palm Pavilion. The venue has mastered the art of casual beachside dining, serving up fruity frozen cocktails and a wealth of tasty local dishes, including conch fritters, gator bites, and palm grouper.

Those in search of an upscale dining experience will delight in Caretta on the Gulf, a four-diamond AAA rated restaurant located at the prestigious Sandpearl Resort. While the gulf grouper and Hawaiian snapper are standout menu items, be sure to check out their extensive sushi menu as well. For post-dinner drinks, head to Clearwaters largest rooftop bar: Marina Cantina. Equipped with a lengthy margarita menu, this Mexican-fusion restaurant is one of the beachs cant-miss destinations for nightlife.

Palm Pavilion has been serving the citizens of Clearwater for almost a century.

While Clearwater Beach is perfect for a quiet afternoon of sunbathing, its also a prime location for thrill seekers. Visitors seeking a high-speed cruise across the open ocean should consult BouYah Sports, a local company offering parasailing and jet ski excursions. For those less inclined to breakneck speeds, kayaks and paddleboards are also available for rent. For nature enthusiasts, consider a short trek north to two pristine coastal getaways: Caladesi Island and Honeymoon Island. Both are designated as state parks, making them the perfect location to explore old-growth slash pine forests, trek across the pristine sandy shore, or encounter coastal Floridas native birds, reptiles and mammals. While Honeymoon Island can be reached by car, Caladesi is accessible through a short ferry ride past wild mazes of mangroves.

For those looking to further explore coastal Florida, Clearwater is in the perfect location to visit some of the states nearby communities. The city of Saint Petersburg makes for a perfect day trip, especially for art and architecture enthusiasts. The Dal, a surrealist museum featuring a massive tiled-glass entryway and spiral staircase, hosts the largest collection of Salvador Dals works outside of Europe, while Florida CraftArt offers walking and biking tours of the citys extensive collection of vibrant street murals.

A Tarpon Springs sponge diver emerges victorious, having speared his prey.

For a truly unique experience, head north of Clearwater to Tarpon Springs, the sponge capital of the world. Visitors can book an excursion with St Nicholas Boat Line, a local company established back in 1924. The tour includes a cruise through the Anclote River, a thorough introduction to the towns historic ties to the sponge industry, and the main attraction: a sponge haul conducted by a certified diver clad in a late-1800s diving suit. Keep in mind that Tarpon Springs is home to the largest concentration of Greek-Americans in the country - head to Mykonos after the cruise for flaming saganaki and a wealth of other Mediterranean dishes.

While some beach destinations have a limited amount of amenities to offer, Clearwater has developed a wealth of varied activities to suit any visitor. From natural beauty, to thriving nightlife, to palatial resorts, crafting an ideal vacation has never been easier. Though its vital to explore beyond the shore, dont skip it entirely - the soft white sand framed by calm blue water is truly a sight to behold.

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Clearwater Has Much More To Offer Than Just World-Class Beaches - Forbes

City votes to put $10,000 toward sexual assault prevention at Beaches ahead of spring break – FirstCoastNews.com WTLV-WJXX

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Sexual assault is in no way an easy topic to discuss. As spring break approaches, the Jacksonville City Council has appropriated funding for the Women's Center of Jacksonville to educate on prevention and how to report an assault.

Ordinance 2020-0111 will allocate $10,000 to Women's Center of Jacksonville by March 2, which will be used to distribute content like posters and flyers at bars, restaurants and hotels in Jacksonville Beach, Atlantic Beach and Neptune Beach.

"We essentially are hosting a big party every weekend, from spring break all the way through the summer," Councilman Rory Diamond said. "It's something we don't love to talk about but we have to talk about: sexual assaults are happening at the beaches. We want to stop them."

The educational programs would correspond with high school and college spring breaks when additional foot traffic is expected at businesses in the Beaches.

"What you'll see is myself and the three Beaches mayors going to every bar and restaurant at the beaches," Diamond said. "We're going to put up posters, put out coasters, we're going to all the police departments to ensure we have training."

Meanwhile, there are signs of possible sexual assault that anyone should be on the lookout for when out with friends.

Sheila Spivey is the Senior Director of the University of North Florida's Women's Center, a resource on campus for students who have survived sexual assault. In an interview with First Coast News, Spivey said the narrative around reporting sexual assaults is progressing.

"The survivor and the perpetrator are typically the two people that the narrative has historically focused on," Spivey said. "But now the narrative is really focused on the entire culture: what within our culture might allow sexual violence to occur."

Spivey pointed out that there are methods of intervention in a situation where someone may be at risk of sexual assault. Methods include approaching a situation with other friends to diffuse tension and pull someone away, as well as direct intervention by calling out negative behavior and habits.

"The shift with bystander intervention is really taking the onus of responsibility for sexual violence away from the victim," she said. "It's not the victim's fault or the victim's responsibility to stop violence from occurring."

Victim's advocacy resources from UNF's Women's Center can be found here. If you or a loved one has experienced sexual assault, the National Sexual Assault Hotline is 1-800-656-4673.

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City votes to put $10,000 toward sexual assault prevention at Beaches ahead of spring break - FirstCoastNews.com WTLV-WJXX

Construction begins for Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach – Long Beach Press Telegram

Construction has officially begun for the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, which will roar back into town April 17-19.

Over the next seven weeks, the temporary 1.97-mile track will come together anew, using more than 2,400 concrete blocks.

The grandstands that will seat more than 187,000 fans are already taking shape.

To aid in the process, Honda Manager of Motorsports Communications T.E. McHale handed over the keys of two new Honda Ridgeline trucks which will help workers from Laborers International Union of North America local 1309 do their job.

Representatives from the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, Honda Motorsports and Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA) Local 1309 gathered to kick off construction and track set set up for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will run April 17-19, in Long Beach on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. Construction of grand stands and the temporary race track has begun for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach. Acura handed over the keys for two new Honda Ridgeline trucks to the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach to assist with construction. (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

Grand Prix Association of Long Beach President & CEO Jim Michaelian speaks to the press as construction, grand stand, and track set set up has begun for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will run April 17-19. Over the next seven weeks the temporary race track will form using more than 2,400 concrete blocks in Long Beach on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

Construction, grand stand, and track set set up has begun for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will run April 17-19. Over the next seven weeks the temporary race track will form using more than 2,400 concrete blocks in Long Beach on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)


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Construction, grand stand, and track set set up has begun for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will run April 17-19. Over the next seven weeks the temporary race track will form using more than 2,400 concrete blocks in Long Beach on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

Construction, grand stand, and track set set up has begun for the 46th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will run April 17-19. Over the next seven weeks the temporary race track will form using more than 2,400 concrete blocks in Long Beach on Tuesday, February 25, 2020. (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

Downtown residents will notice the construction, of course, but there will not be any street closures until the Wednesday before the race, according to Chris Esslinger, Director of Communications for the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach.

Esslinger noted there could be brief traffic delays as large pieces of equipment are moved but these delays will be rare, and the crews are careful not to work during peak traffic hours.

The flags and banners are already hung in anticipation of the race, featuring the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Pirelli GT4 America SprintX, SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks, Super Drift Challenge and the Historic Formula Atlantic Challenge.

Last year, Acuras lead-sponsor role was announced just 65 days before the race. Grand Prix President & CEO Jim Michaelian praised Acuras presence at last years race, despite the short time they had to prepare.

Now that Acura and the Grand Prix Association have had 362 days to plan: Fans will see an extensive expansion of the Acura presence, Michaelian said. There will be more event promotions, sweepstakes and advertisements.

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Construction begins for Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach - Long Beach Press Telegram

UCLA takes first Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Pair of the Week honor – Pac-12.com

PAC-12 BEACH VOLLEYBALL PAIR OF THE WEEK:Savvy Simo(SR/Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.)/Abby Van Winkle (SO/San Clemente, Calif.) Helped the top-ranked Bruins to a 5-1 weekend at the Outrigger Duke Kahanamoku Beach Classic, with all five wins coming against ranked teams before closing out the opening weekendwith a hard-fought 3-2 decision against then-No. 3 LSU.After Simo played on court four last year and Van Winkleon court three, the duo has paired upon court one, a court they had never played on until this season, taking down 2019 first team AVCA All-Americans Claire Coppola/Kristen Nuss from LSU in straight sets the first meeting but lost in three sets the second time around. It is the first time this duo has been honored with the Pac-12 weekly nod, but Simo's third-career recognition.

Also Nominated: Natalie Anselmo/Carly Lowry, ARIZ; Kate Baldwin/Lexi Sweeney, ASU; Madison Dueck/Alexia Inman, CAL.


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UCLA takes first Pac-12 Beach Volleyball Pair of the Week honor - Pac-12.com

The Winter Surfers of Rockaway Beach – The New York Times

First light. Two figures stand on the boardwalk and scan the break. They look over a beach bleached of color, past wind-tattered WARNING flags, out to where waves are shattering against rock jetties. Then the two pick up their boards and shuffle across the snow and the sand and into the water, in a hurry to join the line of surfers bobbing offshore.

The winter season at Rockaway Beach, with its big waves and storm-fueled swells, attracts a devoted breed of surfer. The kind who wakes before dawn, who battles the A train, who navigates turnstiles with a surfboard, who when the waves are right will even surf in a gale.

Surfers change into their wetsuits on the boardwalk. (To do so anywhere but at the beach is frowned upon.) With only faces exposed, they look like seals in various states of physical fitness.

Chris Williams strips out of his clothes, but keeps his winter hat on. Hes a nursing student, and didnt have class this morning. So he went surfing.

Im not very good, he laughs, his breath pluming the air. But Williams appreciates the Rockaways, how its both peaceful and wild. And close.

Williams tugs on his wetsuit (winter suits are five millimeters thick and cumbersome). Then boots, hood, gloves. The technology makes winter surfing seem not so crazy, or so cold. Still, Williams says, that first slap of icy ocean water to the face is brutal. And its hard afterward, on the subway, trying to tie your shoes.

Some days the waves are a mess, but that doesnt stop Cindy Lai.

If you dont learn how to surf lousy waves, she says, dropping in an unprintable adjective, how are you going to learn? The waves today are definitely unprintable. Ugly, chaotic, formless, mean.

Lai leans into the wind and stares at the water. Beach foam whips at her ankles. After tucking her hair into her hood, she stretches: shoulder rolls, rotational lunges, side lunges with a twist. Shes a personal trainer in Chelsea.

She says she meditates on the subway ride here; when shes in the ocean, her mind is free. Lai paddles into the waves; they push her back.

Unfriendly! she shouts, her voice buffeted by the wind, the smile on her face intact. Lai retreats, moves down the beach, tries again. Ten minutes later she is still trying to get out past the waves but they wont let her.

After days of gnarly waves, the weather switches. Thick waves curl evenly to shore with a low rumble. Twenty surfers float outside the break, waiting. A wave rears up. One surfer tips forward and face-plants, board flipping skyward in a white polyurethane flag of surrender.

Another wave rises up. Another surfer leaps up and cuts down the face of it, knees bent, arms low, gaining balance, leaving behind a crash of white, gathering speed as time slows, as wave and surfer shoot from one side of the break all the way to the other until finally the wave eases and the surfer drops. In that moment, despite this taking place at a distance, the language spoken within that body is clear: euphoria.

A morning frost covers the beach. Dune grasses shiver. This doesnt stop the regulars. One man has been coming to the beach and bodysurfing. Without a wetsuit. He catches the waves inside the surfers and rides them to shore, a bare-chested bald torpedo. He stays out there an impossibly long time (the water temperature is 42 degrees) before coming in and running around the sand in tight little circles. He towels off, skin steaming. Drinks from a thermos. Pulls on pants, socks, multiple sweaters, a scarf. Clothed, he looks like a normal New Yorker.

Warren Sampson doesnt love surfing in the cold. He grew up in the Rockaways, but learned to surf in Jamaica. After serving 12 years in the Marines, hes now in school and works at Breakwater Surf Co. He also started a nonprofit school where he and his cousin teach surfing to local children. But thats in good weather.

You have to fight through it, Sampson says of winter surfing. He mutters something about mental fortitude, then paddles out to the break.

Sampson catches a few waves. A few waves catch him, flipping him around like hes not 200 pounds and built like an anchor, which he is. Thirty minutes later Sampson returns to shore, sore and breathless. Hes beaming: Im done!

Rockaway Beach, even in winter, is always in flux: waves, clouds, creatures. Nothing stays in one place for long. Sandpipers racing, sea gulls hovering, snow geese rolling over waves (they almost look as if theyre surfing). Dawn sky sliding from pink to gray. Container ships scud the horizon. Overhead, a winged leviathan, Japan Airlines Flight 006 from Tokyo, breaks through the clouds and descends toward John F. Kennedy Airport. A line of surfers floats offshore, waiting.

I need this, Steve Horney says as he scans the break. Its a crisp morning, with small waves. Horney has the beach to himself.

Discovering the Rockaways changed Horneys perspective on living in New York. Hes a physical therapist in the West Village; he has come out as often as he can this winter. After surfing hell go to Locals, the cafe and surf collective where he rents a locker to store his boards. Hell have a hot shower and an herbal tea before riding the A train home. But not yet.

Theres really something special about right here, right now, he says. He tucks his beard into his hood. Stretches his legs, arms, core. Then he walks into the surf, lifts himself onto his board, and paddles out into the ocean.

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The Winter Surfers of Rockaway Beach - The New York Times

Denby Fawcett: Clearing The Homeless Out Of Kuhio Beach Pavilions – Honolulu Civil Beat

City parks and recreation director Michele Nekota hopes by next month to issue a request for proposals for vendors to operate concessions in two pavilions at Kuhio Beach Park in Waikiki.

Nekota says the city will expedite the process with the new businesses up and running in the pavilions in four to six months. We would like to get them going as soon as possible, she says.

The goal of leasing out this public land at Kuhio Beach Park is to deny the area to hard-core homeless who have commandeered the pavilions for years.

But city officials are unwilling to describe the purpose quite as directly as that because, I suspect, of a concern that such a statement would ignite legal challenges from the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii for alleged discrimination.

The pavilions at Kuhio Beach park are frequently occupied by homeless people. The city now says it will lease out the pavilions to vendors.

Denby Fawcett/Civil Beat

All the city will say is that the new concessions will provide needed services for the public.

It has already leased two of the four pavilions fronting Kuhio Beach.

One current vendor has a three-year contract that can be extended for two more years to run an eatery called Grass Shack Bistro in the pavilion closest to Honolulu Police Departments Waikiki substation.

Another structure known as Pavilion No. 3 was leased out by the city last month to a beach services provider to rent surfboards and beach equipment as well as offer surfing lessons and outrigger canoe rides. That contract went to a nonprofit organization called Pacific Island Beach Boys, whose president is longtime Waikiki waterman David Carvalho.

City spokesman Alexander Zannes says the city offered just a six-month revocable permit because it wasnt certain a beach-service vendor in a roadside pavilion was a good idea or how it might affect other nearby city concession stand operators like Dive Oahu.

Pavilions No. 2 and No. 4, soon to be leased out, are still largely taken over by squatters.

All four of the pavilions at the beach were once open sided but that will change. The city has hired a contractor to install black aluminum folding grill fences for security each day after the concessions close for business.

Primatech Construction will install the gates and the city expects them to be up as early as May.

When I was young, the Kuhio Beach pavilions were called the hau arbors. Card, cribbage and chess players used them regularly. Always open, they served as shady places for the public to enjoy the sea air and beautiful ocean views.

This is another loss for the public, says Dr. Mary Flynn. Flynn is a retired pathologist who lives in Maunalani Heights.

I also feel bad about the loss of the pavilions as public open spaces because of the comfort they provided for Waikiki workers. Walking down Kalakaua Avenue to my gym, I often passed small groups of hotel maids gathered around the arbors tables to enjoy cold drinks, snacks and camaraderie between their shifts.

Or in very early mornings I watched workers in their hotel uniforms come from Mass at St. Augustines Church to relax over coffee in the arbors before starting work.

Two of the pavilions have already been leased to concession operators like this one who provide beach services.

Denby Fawcett/Civil Beat

But times have changed. In 2018, the pavilions were so filthy and crime ridden that then city Councilman Trevor Ozawa tried but was unsuccessful in winning approval for legislation to have them demolished.

The pavilions are not available to the public now because of the inappropriate activities going on in them, says Honolulu Deputy Managing Director Georgette Deemer. The activities that are provided by the concessions will allow the public to come back to use them.

Rick Egged, president of the Waikiki Improvement Association, says hed like the city to move as quickly as possible to lease out the pavilions.

I would love to see the old days come back but I dont see how that could happen, he says. The days of chess and checkers and old folks enjoying the scenery are gone. If the pavilions are left empty they fill up with people engaged in undesirable activities.

Some passersby are scared to enter the pavilions because of the emotional volatility of the mentally ill homeless and the stench of feces and urine. A few people monopolize tables by stretching their sleeping bags across them and dozing off.

Homeless squatters are required to vacate the pavilions only from 2 a.m. until 5 a.m., the hours that Kuhio Beach Park is closed.

And all people in the pavilions are required to remove their personal property from the structures from 6 a.m. until 9 a.m. to allow city workers to clean the areas, which they do each morning by leaf blowing and power washing at each pavilion.

The frustrated workers say the police do not regularly enforce the posted requirement for pavilion users to move their things to make way for the daily cleaning, so the workers are often like a maid service cleaning up around the occupants.

Homeless in the pavilions cannot be told to leave because of the sit-lie law. The citys anti-loitering ordinance applies only to sidewalks, not the pavilions and the grassy areas around the pavilions, which are part of Kuhio Beach Park.

Even the states most tireless advocate for the homeless agrees that the situation at Kuhio Beach has become dire.

There is a lot of nastiness going on in the pavilions. Bringing in concessions is not a bad thing, says Connie Mitchell, the executive director of the Institute for Human Services, Hawaiis oldest and largest homeless services provider.

She says when all four concessions are operating and the homeless no longer can monopolize the pavilions, many of them will move out to the sand on Kuhio Beach where dozens are already sleeping.

People have to be prepared for that, Mitchell says. The people in the pavilions are the chronic homeless with mental health, alcohol and drug abuse problems. There is no structure, no system in place yet to motivate them to seek treatment on their own. There is no carrot. Their illnesses have robbed them of the ability to made good decisions for themselves.

Advocates for the homeless say chasing them out of the pavilions is unlikely to persuade them to move to shelters or seek services.

Denby Fawcett/Civil Beat

Government and private service providers have had some success helping many of Hawaiis homeless residents, but unsheltered addicts and mentally ill vagrants in Chinatown and Waikiki and other locations still represent the states biggest challenge.

Mitchell says the states new assisted community treatment law can help some cases but it can take time to get a judge to order a mentally ill homeless person to accept medical intervention against his or her will. And she says Hawaii still lacks the needed number of treatment facilities.

Marc Alexander, the citys housing director, has been working with IHS to come up with creative ways to reach the service-resistant homeless like the men and women inhabiting the beach pavilions.

He points to the citys new HONU program as offering help to otherwise service-resistant homeless all over the island.HONU is short for Homeless Outreach and Navigation for Unsheltered Persons.

When police see a homeless person breaking a city law, the violator is given the option of arrest or transportation to shelter and services at the citys tent facility in Waipahu.

Alexander says the HONU facility is expected to move soon to the Old Stadium Park, which would be closer for transportation of Waikikis homeless.

Last year at a visitor public safety conference, Honolulu Police Chief Susan Ballard said she intended to make Waikiki uncomfortable for the homeless.

But thats a tall order. Waikiki can be welcoming to many people, even the homeless who often benefit from the kindness of visitors ready to share half of their sandwich or pass out a few dollars to panhandlers.

HPD spokeswoman Sarah Yoro did not say specifically what the chief is doing to make Waikiki unwelcoming other than to point out that police are telling homeless where to go for services and shelter and reminding them they have to vacate the pavilions between 2 a.m. to 5 a.m.

She said the number of complaints and concerns from the public dropped after the city leased out the first two pavilions at Kuhio Beach to private concessionaires.

Last year, HPD officers issued more than 8,000 citations to all kinds of violators, not just homeless, for various offenses in Waikiki.

Interestingly, one of the concessions the city said it would like to see in the pavilions in the future would be a locker facility for beach goers to store their valuables to prevent theft. That would be much safer than people hiding their wallets and car keys in the sand while they swim.

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Denby Fawcett: Clearing The Homeless Out Of Kuhio Beach Pavilions - Honolulu Civil Beat

Beach Haus Brewery: The Place to Be for Unbeatable Views of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade – TAPinto.net

BELMAR, NJ Boasting the best views of the Belmar/Lake Como St. Patricks Day Parade on Sunday, Beach Haus Brewery will once again be in the middle of all the action.

Located at Main Street and Eighth Avenue, the landmark brewerys glass-enclosed upstairs taproom and open-air deck directly overlooks the March 1 parade offering birds-eye views of the marchers, bands and floats as they pass by the reviewing stand less than one block away.

In addition to the festivities outside, Beach Haus will keep the party going inside, as Marty Mckernan will perform medleys of Irish folk songs, sing-a-longs and pub favorites and the Monmouth County Police & Fire Pipes & Drums will make an appearance, playing their way through the brewery.

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And in celebration of the day, Beach Haus will once again feature a beer that has quickly become a parade favorite and made collaboratively with another Belmar business. Beach Haus Parade Day Coffee Stout is an Irish-style beer made with locally roasted beans from Turnstile Coffee, known for its specialty coffees.

And as it offers every day, Beach Haus will have more than 16 other beers on tap.

Doors open at 10:30 a.m. two hours before the parade kicks off in Lake Como and proceeds down Main Street. Cost is $5 to enter.

All guests age 21 and older are welcome. Guests under age 21 must be accompanied by a paying parent or guardian.

And while youre at Beach Haus Brewery, dont forget to take a tour of the 30-barrel brewhouse, where theres a beer for everyone.

For more information and a full list of brews, visit Beach Haus Brewerys website byclicking here. Also follow it onFacebook,InstagramandTwitterto find out the latest brewing news.

The brewery, located at 801 Main Street, can be reached at 732 202-7782 or by email atinfo@beachhausbeer.com.

TAPinto Belmar/Lake Como offers its marketing partners targeted advertising, content marketing, email marketing and sponsorship opportunities to help them brand their products or services, and improve their bottom line. Our advertisers enable us to continue to provide you with local online news for free.

To learn how you can promote your business to our readers, email cgoetz@tapinto.netto request more information about business marketing opportunities.

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Beach Haus Brewery: The Place to Be for Unbeatable Views of the St. Patrick's Day Parade - TAPinto.net

Massive desalination buoy washes up on Hobe Sound beach – WPTV.com

HOBE SOUND, Fla. A massive and mysterious object is causing a lot of buzz after washing up on Hobe Sound beach Monday morning.

Ken Mears and Mike Gomes took pictures of the debris, which was found in the sand in the 100 block of N. Beach Road, at the north end of Jupiter island.

The CEO of Oneka Technologies confirmed to WPTV that the object is a wave-powered desalination buoy, which uses the power of waves to turn saltwater into drinking water.

According to CEO Dragan Tutic, the buoy had been tethered off Fort Pierce since 2017.

Engineers were performing maintenance on the buoy on Friday when rough weather rolled through and the buoy detached.

The object has a large, round yellow top with a long metal arm coming out of it.

The underside is loaded with metal rods, wires, and chains, and there appears to be a tank attached to the bottom as well.

Officials said the device should be removed from the beach by the end of the week.

In April of last year, a large, disc-shaped object washed up on Palm Beach and created a very similar buzz.

It turned out to be a a fish aggregating device, or FAD, which is a floating object that fishermen use to attract fish like marlin, tuna, and mahi-mahi.

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Massive desalination buoy washes up on Hobe Sound beach - WPTV.com

Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach Plan to collaborate on cargo operations – Logistics Management

In a move that was much anticipated by industry experts, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have announced that they will strengthen collaborative measuresin their San Pedro Bay cargo operations.

Americas two largest and most competitive ports have a long and successful history of collaborating on key issues, said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. This agreement significantly expands these efforts and underscores our shared commitment to lead and succeed.

In his recent 2020 State of the Port address, Seroka, the Executivehinted that such a deal might be driven because the port is stronger when we act togetherbecause we are all connected.

He went on to outline many of the challenges and achievements that are occurring within Southern Californias supply chain. In his closing comments he noted that ...we are truly at an inflection point.

Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero, observed that the Our two ports are the fastest way to move goods between Asia and U.S. markets and manufacturers.

The kind of cooperation that will flow from this agreement ensures we will continue to be the most efficient gateway for shippers, he added.

The nations largest seaport complex will work in concert with industry stakeholders to identify and address operational issues to unlock additional efficiencies and lower costs for shippers while improving sustainability, business continuity and security.

The two neighboring ports that share the San Pedro Bay move 37% of the nations containerized imports and 25% of its exports. More than 3 million jobs nationwide are connected to the complex. Meanwhile, the ports continue to face competitive challenges for market share.

The newly approved memorandum of understanding (MOU) is an opportunity to explore five areas of additional cooperation that will enhance competitiveness: cargo transfer predictability, digital connectivity, cybersecurity, establishing metrics and workforce development.

The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners approved the MOU on Feb. 20. The Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners approved the MOU on Feb. 24. Both votes were unanimous.

The first steps will be for the staffs of the two ports to establish a work plan that will prioritize efforts, create work groups and define objectives for each of the areas outlined in the MOU.These efforts will be done in collaboration with stakeholders from marine terminals, labor, drayage, railroads, shipping lines, cargo owners and more.

The MOU is entered into pursuant to authority granted under Federal Maritime Commission Agreement No. 201219, which permits the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles to collaborate on issues such as the environment, supply chain optimization and infrastructure development.

Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, president John McLaurin, notes in the most recent edition of West Coast Trade Report thatSan Pedro Bay ports saw their combined percentage of containerized import tonnage slide in December to 26.9% from 30.4% a year earlier.

"The two experienced an equally sharp drop in the declared value of containerized imports to 33.8% from 37.7%," he said.

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Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach Plan to collaborate on cargo operations - Logistics Management

Miami Beach Chefs to be Honored At City Hall Ceremony – Miami New Times

The South Beach Wine & Food Festival (SOBEWFF) is over till next year, but its impact still resonates in South Florida.

According to the SOBEWFF website, a report generated with the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau's research division in 2018 concluded the festival has an estimated economic impact of more than $34 million on Miami-Dade County, including Miami Beach, where signature SOBEWFF events such as Burger Bash and the Grand Tasting Village are held.

Of course, the festival wouldn't be complete without the chefs who spend time away their restaurants to cook at the various parties, events, and dinners during the five-day extended culinary weekend.

Tomorrow several local chefs will be recognized in a ceremony at Miami Beach City Hall.

Miami Beach CommissionerMichael Gngora will present 18 chefs with a certificate of recognition for their role in "helping shape the city's food scene and reputation as a major culinary destination." In a news release, Commissioner Gngora said, "The festival is an outstanding vehicle to highlight the incredible culinary talent based right here in our own back yard, alongside some of the worlds most well-known chefs, restaurants, and food personalities."

The chefs chosen to receive this recognition were participants at this year's SOBEWFF, which has raised more than $30 million for the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management at Florida International University since the festival's inception, according to SOBEWFF.

The chefs to be honored at the ceremony, which is open to the public, are as follows:

City of Miami Beach Chef Recognition Ceremony. 5 p.m. Wednesday, February 26, at Miami Beach City Hall, Commission Chambers, third floor, 1700 Convention Center Dr., Miami Beach. Admission is free.

Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times. She has been featured on Cooking Channel's Eat Street and Food Network's Great Food Truck Race. She won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature about what it's like to wait tables.

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Miami Beach Chefs to be Honored At City Hall Ceremony - Miami New Times

Cal State Long Beach Continues Reversing The Number Of College Dropouts – Patch.com

From California State University Long Beach:

Cal State Long Beach continues to be at the forefront of reversing the number of college dropouts nationwide.

The national dropout rate hovers around 50% over a six-year period, according to UC Berkeley professor and author David Kirp. However, Cal State Long Beach, through its connection with the Long Beach College Promise program, has seen its graduation rates increase yearly.

The progress Cal State Long Beach has made in this area is why Kirp touts the university as a success story in his book, "The College Dropout Scandal." He called the national trend a "scandal."

"It means that at four-year schools, students are leaving with debt and no degree to show for it," Kirp said Monday in a chat with President Jane Close Conoley at the Martha B. Knoebel Dance Theater. "And that leaves them without the credential to get the kinds of jobs that will allow them to pay off their debt. In fact, it's not short-term; it's life-changing."

Cal State Long Beach has increased its four-year graduation rate for those who enrolled as first-time freshman to 34% in 2019 from 16% in 2015. This improvement is a combined result of the College Promise and a CSU-wide initiative to increase graduation rates by 2025.

The College Promise teams the city's K-12 schools with Long Beach City College and Cal State Long Beach to ensure the success of its students by offering continuous support from the time a student enters kindergarten and into their career.

Kirp wrote in his book that Cal State Long Beach "has turned into a go-to school. With nearly 100,000 applicants, the seventh-highest number nationwide, it could admit a class composed entirely of students with 24-karat credentials. Instead, it accepts local students with substantially weaker grades and SAT scores. Those students are likelier to graduate than their classmates from outside the region. "

Kirp said Monday that a program such as the College Promise addresses the student success problem and boosts graduation rates, which in turn shrinks the opportunity gap of the new generation of students.

"I went around the country looking for schools that were doing good things, and the hope is that places like Long Beach State University and what the city is doing, would actually get other people interested," he said. "And that other institutions would be willing to go out on a limb to make the kind of efforts that all the successful schools have made."

Kirp found that Cal State Long Beach and Georgia State were among the best in promoting student success through personal connections, such as counseling programs. He said many new-gen students come from communities and families who don't have the knowledge or resources to help them.

"The bottom line is the personal connection," Kirp said, pointing out that depression and loneliness can derail college plans.

"It's been my experience here to think at Long Beach, and other places you mentioned, about how we need to be for students to succeed instead of how students need to be in order to succeed with us," Conoley said.

"(We have to ask) are we student-ready? Instead of are you student ready to come here. I think that's a pretty profound switch in mindset."

Kirp said he thought student success was the top priority of every university and college. He called himself "nave."

"The No. 1 priority at many universities is where are you in the U.S. News and World Report rankings, and that drives a whole array of decisions about selectivity and where it is you end up investing in resources," Kirp said.

He added that campus leaders need to make student success their No. 1 priority and it can't be rhetoric, adding that "everyone featured in that book has got to have the guts to do as much as possible along that line."

This press release was produced by California State University Long Beach. The views expressed here are the author's own.

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Cal State Long Beach Continues Reversing The Number Of College Dropouts - Patch.com