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Ybor City

Roberto Roldan / WUSF Public Media

Local and state officials held a ceremonial ribbon cutting Friday to celebrate the TECO Line Streetcar System going fare-free for the next three years.

In addition to dropping the normal $2.50 per ride tickets, the streetcars will now run more frequently and earlier. Starting at 7 a.m. on weekdays, they will now run the 11-mile stretch of tracks between downtown Tampa and Ybor City every 15 minutes. The expanded service is courtesy of a $2.7 million grant from the Florida Department of Transportation.

Tampa Bay Rays

The Tampa Bay Rays unveiled their long-awaited plans Tuesday for a new ballpark in Tampa's historic Ybor City.

The ultramodern design includes glass walls, a translucent dome to let in sunlight to potentially allow for natural grass, while having features that tip its hat to the surrounding Latin district.

Quincy J. Walters / WGCU News

The wild roosters and chickens in Ybor City were at the center of debate and laughter at the Tampa City Council meeting on Thursday.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF Public Media

There's no timetable on when it would open, and no formal plan of what it would look like, but at least the Tampa Bay Rays have finally announced that they want to build their new ballpark on a 14-acre plot of land in Ybor City.

Google Maps

A group of Tampa business leaders will hold a news conference Friday afternoon to unveil a plan to bring the Tampa Bay Rays to their city - and team ownership may be set to say Ybor City is their preferred location.

Daylina Miller/WUSF News

It's just after 8 p.m. on a recent Friday night outside  the King Corona Cafe in Tampa's Ybor City. Throngs of people are filing into the many bars and clubs hosted alongside historic 7th Avenue, but some are here for a different kind of entertainment.

You may have heard of feral cats, but have you heard of feral chickens? Feral chickens are now the subject of evolutionary research. And the ones in Tampa's Ybor City and Key West are perfect fodder to study. 


Histroy Bike Tampa

A Tampa couple is using a novel method to show Tampa residents and tourists the history of the city.

Eric and Katie Turner began History Bike Tampa in 2013 as a way to educate residents about lesser-known historical events and people. Every two months, they take groups of up to 100 riders and zigzag along backstreets and alleyways to historically significant locations in Tampa.

Sonia Labrador-Rodriguez

This Saturday, New College is wrapping up a yearlong series of events around the relationship between Cuba and the U.S. 

New College professor Sonia Labrador-Rodriguez organized the Cubano-American Community Project, which looks at the deep roots Cuban-Americans have in this part of Florida.

Anthony Martino

On Wednesday night, about 75 protestors marched in Tampa's Ybor City to protest President-elect Donald Trump. 


Tampa Convention Center Facebook page

If you've noticed people wearing maroon or white fezzes walking around downtown Tampa this week, that's because the Shriners are back in town.

For the third time in six years, the Ancient Egyptian Arabic Order Noble Mystic Shrine - also known as Prince Hall Shriners - is holding its Imperial Session in Tampa. An estimated 25,000 members of the primarily African-American order, along with members of their women's auxiliary, known as the Daughters of Isis (or Imperial Court), are visiting the area.

Quincy Walters / WUSF News

It's been a little over a week since a gunman entered the Pulse nightclub in Orlando and killed 49 people. It was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. And in just a few days, the Tampa Bay area plays host to St. Pete Pride - Florida's biggest celebration for the LGBT community. 

St. Pete Museum of History Wants Residents' Cuba Photos

May 24, 2016
www.spmoh.com

  The St. Petersburg Museum of History wants residents’ personal photos of Cuba for their upcoming exhibit “Experience Cuba.”

State lawmakers want to put Florida back on the silver screen by rebooting the state’s film incentives program. Some lawmakers are tired of watching films about Florida being shot in other states.

Tampa Police Dept.

UPDATED AT 9/10 12:30 AM with details on arrest of suspect and Judy Genshaft's comments.
Tampa Police announced that a 23-year-old man is being charged in an incident that left former University of South Florida football player Elkino Watson dead and current USF student Desmond Horne injured. 

Randolph Graham, 23, turned himself in at Tampa Police headquarters Wednesday night. Graham, who was joined by his lawyer, will be charged with second-degree murder with a weapon and attempted murder with a weapon, police said.

GoUSFBulls.com

In response to the weekend stabbing death of former player Elkino Watson, University of South Florida football coach Willie Taggart made Ybor City off-limits to his players Monday.

Quincy J. Walters / WUSF News

It sounds like something bad is about to happen as I step into Dysfunctional Grace. As I walk into the store during it's grand opening, I'm surrounded by ominous music, skulls, artistically modified taxidermy, religious relics, vintage medical equipment, a coffin and a table of food.

Robert Wilkes, of Tampa, is a curious spectator. He's walking around with a piece of chicken on a stick. 

"Nothing's better than eating dead animals, surrounded by dead animals," he said. "It's good to be human." 

M.S Butler

Florida's Department of Children and Families said in 2014  there were at least 5,700 homeless people under the age of 18 in our state. Some of them teenagers living on their own. But there's one group that makes up a disproportionate amount of homeless teens in Florida and throughout the nation.

They've been called street kids, couch surfers or as St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman said back in March: “There is a federal bureaucratic term for the young people who will be served here—unaccompanied youth. But they are in reality homeless.”

StoryCorps Tampa Bay: Growing Up in Ybor City

Dec 29, 2014
StoryCorps

 

In this installment of StoryCorps Tampa Bay, we meet Rigoberto Garcia. He was born in Tampa’s Ybor City in 1930. He recalls what it was like growing up with immigrant parents who worked in the cigar factories, and the importance of the Martí-Maceo mutual aid society, which was started by Afro-Cuban cigar workers in the early 1900s.

He joins USF anthropology professor and author of “More than Black: Afro-Cubans in Tampa,” Susan Greenbaum for StoryCorps Tampa Bay.

This week's StoryCorps Tampa Bay was produced by Lottie Watts.

A Piece of New York in Ybor City to Remember 9/11

Sep 11, 2014
Yoselis Ramos / WUSF News

A steel beam from the second World Trade Center Tower is the centerpiece of the "Fearless Champions" sculpture which now stands by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office in Ybor City. It was designed by artist Becky Ault to honor the first responders and survivors of the 9/11 terrorist attacks 13 years ago.

"The sacrifice and patriotism September 11th inspired in our country can never be allowed to fade, no matter distance nor passing of time," emcee Don Germaise said.

 

The keynote speaker was retired Navy Captain Jeff Cathey, and he said it is appropriate to have the sculpture right by the sheriff's office.

Lottie Watts / WUSF

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Division of Dockets Management says it has received 75,000 comments on a proposed rule on tobacco products. That's thousands more comments than most other proposals. 

"It's looking like it ranks in the top 10 of all time," Ryan Cleaver, a docket specialist with the agency, said of the public comment period that ends today. 

Lottie Watts / WUSF

Gov. Rick Scott's office is continuing to push back against cigar regulations proposed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. 

WUSF/Yoselis Ramos

Central Avenue was once the "Harlem of Tampa," where black-owned businesses flourished. The historic Jackson House – a boarding house – rented rooms to stars like Ella Fitzgerald and Cab Calloway. Former Florida NAACP director, civil rights activist Robert W. Saunders was born and raised just around the corner.

Baseball Museum Coming to Ybor City Next Spring

Sep 23, 2013
Nathan Powell / WUSF Public Media

More than 80 Major League Baseball players have come from the Tampa Bay area.

The first was Al Lopez, and his former home will soon be the site of The Tampa Baseball Museum - opening in the spring of 2014 in Ybor City.

The Ybor City Museum Society received the deed to the Al Lopez house today.

Steve Barbas, Chairman of the Ybor City Museum Society, said that the museum will be a home for celebration, preservation and education of local baseball culture.

Expansion of Ybor City has Initial Okay

Feb 15, 2013

City Council granted the initial okay to expand the historic district of Ybor City.

Diana Lucas Leavengood

Ask Dennis Lehane about storytelling and he will tell you that he grew up in Boston surrounded by Irish aunts and uncles who constantly revised their stories to make them better.

He says he also grew up in a bar culture, where if "you didn't tell a good story in the bar, they didn't give you a polite clap and listen till you got to the end, they just shouted you down."

Many of his books are dark and some have been translated to the movie screen in the films Mystic River and Gone Baby Gone.  Lehane says he's learned "what seems to be without a doubt, the sweet spot in my wheelhouse is tragedy.  So, when I write books of epic tragedy, that seems to be the books that stick the most in the consciousness of the people that read them."

Top 5 Changes to Ybor City's Guavaween Event

Oct 26, 2012
Facebook

Guavaween, Ybor City's annual Latin-themed Halloween celebration, returns Saturday with a few changes. The 27th edition of the event will still feature a costume contest and host "Mama Guava," but here's what's new:

WATCH: Obama Supporters at Ybor Rally Speak Out

Oct 25, 2012
Alex Cook / WUSF News

President Barack Obama spoke to potential voters at a rally in Ybor City on Thursday morning.

He wasn't the only one who had things to say.

The people who got up early to see the president spoke about why they came, gave their thoughts on the election, and discussed the political issues that are important to them.

Their words below.

President Obama Revs Up Crowd in Ybor City

Oct 25, 2012
Alex Cook / WUSF

President Obama started his morning with a cup of Cuban coffee and a crowd estimated at 8,500 people in  Centennial Park in Ybor City.

"Good morning, Tampa," the president said. "Thanks for waking up early."


Saturday May 26 in Ybor City's Centennial Park there's an event billed as the Cuban Sandwich Festival where the best Cuban sandwich in Florida will be judged.

Restaurants from Tampa and Miami have been invited to compete.

But, in the wake of Tampa City Council passing a resolution proclaiming the Tampa concoction the "Historic Tampa Cuban Sandwich," Victor Padilla, festival co-organizer, says only one Miami eatery had the nerve to enter 'enemy' territory.

"So far we've only had one. I guess the rest chickened out," says Padilla.