Friday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
As Florida continues to reel from citrus greening, growers, processors and researchers explore another option — lemons
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Everyone’s heard the expression — used to describe turning a bad situation into a good one. Now Florida growers, processors and researchers, including several around the west coast of the state, have put their own spin on it: when life gives you citrus greening, grow lemons. More from the Business Observer.
Florida researchers help plan missions to mine moon's surface
Researchers at the University of Central Florida are planning a mission to mine the surface of the moon. This research will be critical in deciding where the U.S. and private companies land on the lunar surface, and how we make money when we get there. Researchers plan to assess soil composition, sun exposure for solar needs, and possible underground ice reserves. That ice is a valuable resource, where it can be broken down into hydrogen and oxygen, and then turned into rocket fuel. More from WFTV.
The numbers are in: Tampa Bay's tourism industry crushed spring break season
Tampa Bay’s tourism business shot up again during its peak season, with both sides of the bay reporting record-breaking travel numbers thanks to the usual influx of events and spring breakers. The uptick was not only thanks to an influx of visitors, but to increasing room cost and occupancy rates, according to tourism agencies Visit St. Pete/Clearwater and Visit Tampa Bay. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Craft beer cresting? Startup distilleries are starting to bloom across South Florida
A 305-er by birth, Fernando Plata served in the 82nd Airborne Division and learned engineering before moving on to work for multiple Fortune 500 companies as a software developer. (He actually still works at one.) The thing is, he has a short attention span. And he enjoys gin. Now, his Big Cypress Distillery is capitalizing on Miami’s re-surging interest in craft cocktails. More from the Miami Herald.
Florida’s hurricane sales tax free holiday starts May 31. Here’s what items qualify.
Hurricane season in Florida, generally defined as the six months from June 1 through Nov. 30, might easily be considered the most turbulent time of the year. When lawmakers approved a $121 million tax breaks package at the end of the legislative season, they also approved a tax “holiday” that overlaps with the start of the stormy season, in which several hurricane preparedness supplies won’t be subject to a sales tax. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
One of the greatest threats to the grid will menace your bird feeder, too
As unbelievable as it may sound, animals are responsible for a significant number of outages around the country every year. Last year, they caused 4,566 outages for Duke customers in Florida (11 percent of its total outages) and 1,372 outages for Tampa Electric customers (12 percent of its 2018 outages), according to filings with state regulators.
» More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Out of the Box
Cassadaga spiritualist camp marks 125th anniversary as haven for mediums and healers
The Cassadaga spiritualist camp, a home to mediums and healers about 35 miles north of Orlando, is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, marking the evolution of a community on a “vortex of psychic energy” where the gifts of spiritualists can thrive and believers can worship in peace.
» Read more from the Orlando Sentinel.
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