Thursday, April 29, 2010

Refugee All-Stars of Sierra Leone at Skipper's on Friday

[Charles] This Friday at Skipper's Smokehouse, we have a chance to catch a really amazing afro-beat band made up of survivors of the wars in Sierra Leone. Here's the trailer from the documentary about their band. If you believe like me that music can change the world then this is a band you won't want to miss.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Bike Lanes Planned and Unplanned

Alan Snel and our biking Mayor Pam (Photo from Bicycle Stories)
[Charles] It must be really expensive to paint a bike lane... The cost of a bicyclist's life must seem really small in comparison to a crew of painters and an occasional parking space in front of one's house. We just can't seem to get our city committed to making a safe network of bike lanes for our locals. We "Semhis" love riding our bikes to downtown on Tampa St. from Seminole Heights, but then we have to meander and zig zag over to find the lanes pick back up on Nebraska. We're lucky because at least there are SOME lanes. According to Alan at Bicycle Stories, we just can't seem to get lanes for our fellow bikers on Euclid in South Tampa. Please don't let our leaders weasel out of this commitment they've made. I'd even attach that photo of Mayor Pam in her bike helmet from the Crit a few weeks ago to help get the point across. Thanks Alan for the reporting - it was good to see you out at the Earth Day Tampa Bay event at Lowry Park!

Here's the article Reprinted from Bicycle Stories -

"Word is out that the city of Tampa is breaking its commitment to stripe bike lanes on Euclid Avenue as part of re-paving the road. Seems some residents are upset that they are losing parking on the road and won't have space for friends who come over for book club meetings (that's an actual example).

Well, the city of Tampa, always looking to accommodate the convenience of book club meeting participants over the safety of bicyclists, has reneged on its initial plan to stripe bike lanes.

Councilwoman Linda Saul-Sena found out about this and wrote a letter to Mayor Pam Iorio, Council Chairman Tom Scott and council members and Transportation Planning Director Jean Dorzback:

"Yesterday I became aware that the City Administration removed a proposed bicycle lane planned for Euclid Avenue. This is contrary to what was conveyed to City Council by the Administration at a recent public meeting.

"Also, yesterday my deputy campaign manager was hit by a car while riding her bicycle home from the office. Fortunately, she suffered only minor injuries, but her bicycle was destroyed.

"Our community must improve our behavior to make bicycle-riding a safe mode of transportation. We must educate motorists to respect the rights of bicyclists to share the road and we must create a network of bicycle lanes to allow bicyclists safe routes community-wide.

"I will request our Transportation Department to appear and report on May 20 under Staff Reports on how we will address these safety needs and why the commitment to bicycle safety on Euclid Avenue is being broken."

Friday, April 23, 2010

EcoFest Tomorrow (Apr. 24) at Learning Gate School in Lutz

Rendering from Carlson Studio
[Charles] Tomorrow we will be moving the Market for one day up to support an amazing one of a kind school in our community. (We'll be back open on Sunday.) EcoFest is a festival that brings together the green community in Tampa with vendors, music, and information at the Learning Gate School. The Learning Gate Community School is an environmentally focused charter school in Lutz just north of Tampa - right near the intersection of I-275 and Nebraska Avenue. On Saturday the school will be open for people to walk through and see some of the amazing work that has gone into making the school a model of sustainable architecture. There are water harvesting systems, sustainable materials, cutting edge energy saving features, and all of that will be on display with some 40 or so classroom presentations set up for visitors.

In addition to visiting the school to see green technology in action, there will also be a festival called EcoFest that has attracted live music, vendors, produce, and environmental organizations. This will be a lot of fun for the whole family with activities for the kids and parents alike. This is an interesting educational opportunity for those interested in making our world better for the next generation. Come see how an alternative to our current education system can shape the environmental leaders of our next generation.

"EcoFest 2010-
Learning Gate is excited to showcase over 75 local vendors and green efforts in our community. EcoFest 2010 will be this years premier Eco-Educational experience in the Tampa Bay area dedicated to the principles of sustainability –Ecology, Equity and Economy.

EcoFest 2010 will be held this Saturday April 24, 2010 on the school grounds in Lutz, Florida. The event will be open to the public from 9:00 A.M. until 3:00P.M. Admission and parking for the event are free.
There will be live music, food, workshops, demonstrations, informational booths, green living products and services. Many local artists, green businesses, environmental organizations, alternative health practitioners, renewable energy specialists, organic farms and gardens with produce.

16215 Hanna Road, Lutz, FL 33549"

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Earth Day Party at Tampa Street Market

Earth Day is Thursday the 22nd and that gives us an excuse to have a little get-together at the Market. We'll be on the lookout for some organic wines and beer and some snacks for everyone. Also, in the spirit of community, we encourage anyone to BYOOB (bring your own organic bottle) to share with friends and neighbors.

We want to encourage all of the people that haven't been able to check us out yet to take a few minutes and stop by. We'll be open late - until 9:00 - to give everyone a chance to celebrate Earth Day with friends - new and old. We love meeting neighbors and just hanging out at our second home (we practically live there anyway!) We will work on some cool raffle prizes and will definitely spin some excellent tunes for after work relaxation.

To show our thanks for three and a half years of amazing support, we will be offering 20% anything in the store as a way to say thank you for spending part of your Earth Day with us (with the usual exclusions of local consigned art).

We are also extending a special invitation to all of the members of the Seminole Heights Community Garden to help celebrate their first year of community based organic gardening! Come by and talk to Garden members if you've always been curious about urban gardening or throw a couple of bucks their way and get a bumper sticker for the Garden to show your support! We are happy to give the folks at the Garden a place to congregate that doesn't involve sweating in the sun for a few hours...

Charles and Amy
Tampa Street Market

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Celebrate Earth Day with Recycled Art from New Local Artists!

We've met some really great artists this week and added their unique offerings to ours. Come by and see what a three string guitar made from scrap wood and a cigar box looks like or take a look at mirrors decorated with soda cans to a staggeringly beautiful effect. Celebrate recycled art this Earth Day!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

CL Tampa Green Issue Out Today

[Charles] Big shout to Tampa's Green Community writer at Creative Loafing - Katie Machol! Instead of the same old list of green ideas that most papers haul out every year, she went to the people and asked for their ideas. Large or small, actually "preferably small" she told me. The idea was to give people things they can easily do to keep moving forward and improving our world.

Not everybody is going to take to the seas ramming whaling ships or scaling bridges for Greenpeace. Most of us have enough on our plate with work, kids, friends, family, and life in general that changing a light bulb is actually a victory worth celebrating. If everybody took a few of these ideas in the article home, the impact would be huge!

I offered that I'd like to see more cool bike racks like NYC's David Byrne designs and more bike lanes to downtown. While we're at it, let's bring back the electric taxis. There were other simpler ideas like to make sun tea or to stop idling in the drive thru that make it really easy to change.

Here's the link to the post on CL's site. While you're there, you might check out the site for more ideas that didn't make the print version but are still worth considering.

-Photos from Creative Loafing's Flickr page-

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Take Me to the River

[Charles] On the way in this morning, Marcie at WMNF 88.5 reminded me that today is Al Green's birthday (64 if you're counting). That's all the reason I needed to post this -

Aside from being one of my favorite singers - Al also was covered by The Talking Heads with Take Me to the River. That song got David Byrne on the radio and into my permanent rotation. I'll play both versions for my daughter and probably some young singer will cover Al Green for her and her generation. I hope that someday she remembers me spinning this album.

If there was a "Soul School" like the post says, then Reverend Al was definitely at the head of the class.

Enjoy the tunes.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Sherry's Yesterdaze in the New York Times

Chip Litherland for The New York Times

Mitzi Gordon of Tampa, at Sherry’s YesterDaze Vintage.

Photo from the New York Times - Chip Litherland
[Charles] Last Thursday, in the travel section of the New York Times, Sherry's Yesterdaze from little ole Seminole Heights was the main part of a feature story on vintage clothes shopping in Tampa. It was nice to see Tampa shown as something more than just a cigar factory graveyard. Sherry's was one of the pioneering businesses to head to Seminole Heights when she left South Tampa years ago. I'm sure there are old customers of hers south of Kennedy still wondering where Seminole Heights is.

Here's the link to the article -

Also, at the bottom of that article was an earlier article called 36 Hours in Tampa which was pretty enjoyable too. It's nice to be a tourist in your own city every once in a while...

Monday, April 5, 2010

Wood Recycling Community Project

[Charles] Here's a video posted on Treehugger about a wood recycling project in Bristol. They take some of the wood and make it into shelving and planter boxes then sell the rest in a salvage yard. I would love to start one of these in our neighborhood. Talk about a win-win, getting people good work and saving this wood from the landfills...

Here's the original link

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Tampa Street Market Agrees Drill Baby Drill!

[Charles] Tampa Street Market joins with the Pres to harvest some Florida black gold!!! Who likes the beach but those silly Ohioan tourists anyway?! Get your pumps going! oh and Happy April Fools Day!

I know, it felt like April fools when I read it too.

Maybe it won't be this legislature or this generation, but they will keep trying until they get every drop of it.

"How many are coming?"
"Like the stars." - one of the best lines in Dances with Wolves.