Monday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
› Engaging robots could be roaming Disney parks in near future
A robotic rabbit wearing a helmet and roller skates tumbled out of a crate and got to its feet alone, extending its arms to balance itself on a stage at Disney’s panel at the South by Southwest conference this month. The robot, apparently modeled after the character Judy Hopps from Disney’s 2016 animated film “Zootopia,” then skated across the stage into a somersault and returned to its feet in a triumphant pose, arms raised, as the audience cheered. A nearby Imagineer, Morgan Pope, steadied the robot as it leaned forward and lifted it onto his shoulders to laughter.
› Florida business owner concerned about Spring Break
Last year, shops and restaurants at the Shoppes at Edgewater were forced to close after rowdy crowds caused problems for law enforcement. The closure hurt local business owners. “Last year we had to close down two nights, it cost me over $50,000 in revenue,” American Charlie and Firefly restaurant owner Dave Trepanier said. “I can weather that storm, but I have servers and people that live, week to week and paycheck to paycheck.”
› Sarasota filmmaker launches new company with movie about mental health
For more than 25 years, KT Curran told stories with important messages for the kind of young people she worked with at Source Productions, first in stage plays and later on film But like many of the actors she has worked with, Curran has been growing up as a writer and filmmaker and has set a new path while continuing to tell issue-related stories.
› Former Arturo Fuente Cigar Co. factory has a new owner — a Fuente
When Liana Fuente saw the handwriting on the wall, she knew that the building had to stay with the family. The two-story wood and concrete block building at 2708 N 18th St. was used as a factory for Arturo Fuente Cigar Co. in the 1950s and 1960s. After her cousins put it up for sale in October, Liana Fuente decided to take a tour of the factory where her grandfather also once lived.
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