Thursday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Trump, two hurricanes, tourism and technology — the biggest business stories of 2017
When we look back on 2017 in Florida, there was Hurricane Irma — and then there was everything else. While the hurricanes felt like the year's biggest story, there were other events with deep, long-term ramifications for Florida. More from the Miami Herald.
Study: State’s industry diversification ranking improves
The state of Florida was more economically diverse in the second quarter of 2017 compared to the same quarter in 2016, according to a quarterly report issued by Florida Gulf Coast University’s Industry Diversification Project. More from Florida Weekly.
Florida state park looks for new mermaids
A Florida state park is looking for new mermaids. Or at least humans who can pretend to be mermaids. Weeki Wachee Springs State Park will hold auditions Jan. 13 for its world-famous mermaid squad. There are currently 17 performing mermaids and three princes. More from Click Orlando and WFTS.
Palm Beach adjusts to the president as a part-time resident
This holiday season, as Trump makes his 10th visit to Florida as president, his presence has become an afterthought to many. Logistical problems caused by his stay remain a mild annoyance, but those who live and visit here say they have learned to plan around the inconveniences. More from the Washington Post.
Judge tells big tobacco to keep paying Florida
A judge in Florida is ordering R.J. Reynolds to continue paying the state millions of dollars in tobacco settlement money despite selling off major brands. Circuit Judge Jeffrey Dana Gillen in Palm Beach County issued his ruling nearly a year after Attorney General Pam Bondi sued the tobacco company and Imperial Tobacco Group. More from the AP.
What's Coming to Central Florida Theme Parks in 2018?
The new year is slated to be a big one one for Central Florida theme parks with several rides and attractions slated to open in the coming months. All the major players in the region's theme park industry -- Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld Orlando -- have projects in the works that are sure to engage guests in 2018.
» More from Click Orlando.
Out of the Box
Weird Florida 2017
How weird was the news out of Florida this year? So weird that the popular @_FloridaMan Twitter account apparently gave up trying to keep up with it all in mid-October. But don’t worry. The Tampa Bay Times has not slacked off on tracking all the wacky and wild news this year. As expected, 2017 produced a bumper crop of the bizarre.
» Read more from the Tampa Bay Times.
In case you missed it: