Lakelandist Pokes Gentle Fun at Lakeland
Who says Lakelanders can’t take a joke? A new satirical website/Facebook/Twitter persona called The Lakelandist has been gleefully poking fun at Lakeland institutions for about a month. They’ve attracted a loyal following and launched a new guessing game: Whose wit fuels The Lakelandist? Nobody has come forward yet.
Signs Seen As Step Saving Swans
The folks at City Hall tasked with making Lake Morton safer for swans and pedestrians have unveiled their first weapon: 20 mph speed limit signs. Those same people say inattentiveness, not speed, caused recent collisions. So how will a 5 mph reduction help? Their answer: By making drivers think about safety. More changes are coming.
More Signs Aim to Clear Up Downtown Parking Rules
New signs are being created to clear up some misunderstandings about free on-street parking downtown. The free period lasts for two hours starting at the time you first park; it’s not cumulative time you can use in spurts throughout the day, city transportation chief Angelo Rao says. The challenge: Finding the right few words to say that succinctly on a sign.
National Media Picks Up Dunn Criminal Case
A recent news story has gotten Lakeland the wrong kind of national attention. Network news and national newspapers picked up the story in late October when City Commissioner Michael Dunn was charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of a shoplifter at his military surplus store. He’s been held without bond and appears in court again Nov. 6.
Healthy Food: GreenWise Opening Seen in Early 2020
Publix has revealed a few more details about the GreenWise Market planned for the now-vacant former Kmart property across from Lake Miriam Plaza. With opening planned for early 2020, the natural-organic-focused store will occupy about one-third of an 80,000-square-foot shopping center that will have one other anchor store. No word yet on who that is.
Trendy Food: Lake Mirror Site Getting Artisan Hall
Longtime Lakelanders Jon and Sarah Bucklew are planning to turn the abandoned Lakeland Brewing building on Lake Mirror into an artisan food hall. They’re renovating the building to give it an airy indoor-outdoor feel and house eight eateries, including a taproom and brewery for a major Central Florida beer maker. A spring opening is anticipated.
Food Truck Park: New Potential Developer Emerges
There are a few new wrinkles to plans for a food truck park at Massachusetts Avenue and Parker Street that we wrote about in the June issue. The Lakeland CRA is now negotiating with another potential developer: a company that has local ties and operates the successful Rayback Collective in Boulder, Colo. Their plan includes an indoor beer garden.
Downtown Food: New Options Include Sushi, Coffee Bistro
New dining options in the downtown area include Tsunami Sushi on Tennessee Avenue across from Munn Park and Black & Brew Lake Morton at the Lakeland Public Library. Closed: Uncle Nick’s Bagels in the NoBay complex. Merged: D’Lucas closed at Dixieland Village but lives on as lunch options at Nineteen 61 until a new spot is located.
Research Candidates, Issues Before Nov. 6 Election
The Nov. 6 election ballot is long and complicated. If you haven’t voted yet, here are a few places to do research: Get a personalized sample ballot at polkelections.com (Click on Voter Lookup.) Learn more about candidates and issues, including links to campaign contributions and news reports, at lkldnow.com/2018-elections.
Lakeland Cracks Top 10 in List of Retirement Havens
Lakeland moved from 26th last year to 10th this year in U.S. News and World Report’s list of Best Places to Retire in the U.S. The magazine based its ratings on six factors: housing affordability, desirability, retiree taxes, the Gallup happiness index, job market and health care quality. Other Florida cities in the top 10: Fort Myers, Sarasota.