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Tuesday's Afternoon Update

No lettuce for Florida manatees this winter: Experts end feeding trial after two years

For the past two winters, Florida wildlife biologists have experimented hand-feeding lettuce to hungry manatees in the Indian River Lagoon as the animals’ natural food source, seagrass, was in short supply from pollution problems. This winter, though, there won’t be another feeding trial. More from the Tampa Bay Times and the Orlando Sentinel.

Duke OK'd to collect Idalia costs

State regulators Tuesday approved a plan by Duke Energy Florida that includes collecting $91.9 million from customers in 2024 to cover costs related to Hurricane Idalia. The plan, approved unanimously by the Florida Public Service Commission, will take effect in January. To help cushion the blow to customers’ monthly bills, Duke also will spread out costs that it already is collecting for a series of earlier storms, such as Hurricane Ian and Hurricane Nicole. More from News Service of Florida.

Fort Lauderdale’s venerable Galleria Mall up for sale after failed attempts at redevelopment

Fort Lauderdale’s decades-old Galleria Mall, once the city’s epicenter of urban dining and retailing, is in search of a buyer after years of trying to reshape its persona into a 21st century destination. CBRE, the nationally prominent commercial real estate services firm, has drawn the task of finding a new owner. “An extraordinary opportunity,” the firm said in a statement, “with incredible large-scale, luxury mixed-use redevelopment potential. An offering of this scale has not been available in Greater downtown Fort Lauderdale in decades.” More from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Service connects JaxPort to ports in Middle East, India, Spain

The Jacksonville Port Authority announced Dec. 4 that Ocean Network Express will begin offering direct container ship service in May from Northeast Florida to seven ports in Pakistan, India, Saudi Arabia, Spain and Egypt. The weekly West India North America service will be operated by a fleet of nine ONE vessels. More from the Jacksonville Daily Record.

‘It’s about time.’ Miami artists are ‘ascendant’ on international scene this Art Week

Over the last couple of years, Miami-born and based artists have reaped the benefits of their hard work, talent and hometown’s art hub status as they enjoy national and international attention now more than ever before. Historically, there has been a common local gripe that Miami’s homegrown talent gets overlooked during Miami Art Week, but that sentiment seems to have diminished as artists outgrow Art Basel Miami Beach’s shadow. More from the Miami Herald.

Florida Dining
Orlando’s first Skyline Chili has Cincinnatians lining up

When Daniel Hunsucker opened the Orlando metro’s first-ever Skyline Chili franchise back on Nov. 8, there was a lot of excitement. Ohio transplants and folks from the greater Cincinnati area flocked to Winter Garden to get a taste of home. Lines were out the door for a week. Hunsucker, 32, ate Skyline five times a week as a high schooler growing up in the Cincinnati suburb of Blue Ash. “I’m super passionate, and I love the brand,” he tells me.

» More from the Orlando Sentinel.


Tampa Bay family competing for $50K on ABC’s ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’

A Hillsborough County family known for their over-the-top Christmas lights display will compete for a $50,000 prize on the 11th season of reality-competition series “The Great Christmas Light Fight” this December. Audra and Rodney Burton and their home at 2014 Sydney Road in Valrico will appear on the Sunday, Dec. 10, episode set to air at 10 p.m. on ABC.

» Read more from Tampa Bay Times.