BEACH READS

Florida's beaches feature as many different stories to tell as there are grains of sand. Come here to read more about the people, places and events across the Sunshine State's communities. We'll also feature tips and tricks for you to get the most out of events, activities and more.

City Council approves plan for larger beach hotel on Clearwater Point

Neighbors didn't like the plan, which would expand capacity by 27 rooms.
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TradeWinds rebrands Guy Harvey Outpost as RumFish Beach Resort

The restaurant's success earns it the spotlight after a licensing agreement expires.
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Clearwater Point residents object to planned hotel project

Decade Properties wants to build new lodging at the site of Chart House Suites on the far end of Clearwater Beach, but locals say it's too big for their neighborhood.
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Madeira Beach city marina has lost as much as $550,000 over three years, audit shows

Unauthorized discounts, under-billing and lax procedures have contributed to the losses in potential revenue.
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Shark attacks were down last year, both in Florida and worldwide

Climate change may be a factor, but the Sunshine State is still the global leader.
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Tampa's Florida Aquarium opens $4.1 million turtle rehab center in Apollo Beach

The facility near TECO's Manatee Viewing Center already has a reef restoration project, and has future plans to help stingrays and sharks.
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Florida state parks still reeling from Hurricane Michael damage

Officials are still working on what to do about that as they work to reopen all of St. Joseph Peninsula and three other state parks that remain closed.
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Clearwater Beach raises parking rates

The move was to bring prices more in line with other Florida beach towns, the city says.
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Sand sculpting classes offer tips for building better memories

A Panhandle company offers family-friendly instruction in creating better sandcastles.
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St. Pete Beach residents worry about noise from new Caddy’s restaurant on Intracoastal Waterway

The former Silas Dent’s Steakhouse is next door to several condo buildings and homes, raising fears that revelers may be too raucous.
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New federal law will overhaul recreational fishing rules

Millions of U.S. anglers and the groups that stake their livelihoods on them hope the changes will bring better management.
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Proposed Florida law would ban smoking cigarettes on the beach

A Sarasota County ban was overturned in court, so now state legislators are looking to ban it statewide. The dispute is about litter, not second-hand smoke.
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Red Tide is back on the Gulf Coast, but the government shutdown hampers tracking efforts

With some federal agencies currently shuttered, scientists are having a hard time tracking the toxic algae as well as they did over the summer.
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Tampa Bay Frogman Swim reaches 10th anniversary

The event has raised $3.5 million for the Navy SEAL Foundation, and has expanded to Boston and San Francisco.
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Humpback whales sighted off Daytona Beach, Flagler Beach areas (w/video)

Volusia and Flagler counties report rare whale sightings far off shore, after a record-low number of sightings last year.
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Pinellas County asks court to help deal with Redington Long Pier

The landmark was damaged by a storm's strong winds; Officials say it must either be repaired or torn down entirely.
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Florida boaters killed a record number of manatees in 2018

The total number of deaths falls just shy of the record set five years ago.
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Get free stuff from Florida Beach Insider at the Outback Bowl's Clearwater Beach Day

Come by our booth to get your photo taken and to score some pretty cool handouts before the Mississippi State Bulldogs play the Iowa Hawkeyes in Tampa.
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Mexico Beach lights Christmas tree amid wreckage of Hurricane Michael

The residents of the devastated town on Florida's Panhandle want to show they are standing strong as a community.
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Stone crab season is bad in most of Florida, but it's OK in Tampa Bay

Red Tide was a major factor in a bad harvest across South Florida, leading to sky-high prices this year.
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Red Tide is gone in Pinellas County, and the beaches are wide open

The visitors are still staying away on the Suncoast, much to the delight to the tourists who did arrive (but not the businesses).
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Hillsborough County cites Beer Can Island for code violations

The property has no zoning designation, so code enforcement sent a violation notice to the Tampa Bay island's owners over changes.
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Mexico Beach couple get married on remains of home destroyed by Hurricane Michael

A firefighter and a police officer from the tiny Panhandle town decide to tie the knot where they fell in love.
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Enter. Win. Swim: Sign up to enter our Swim With the Manatees giveaway

We’ve partnered with Plantation on Crystal River to offer up to four guests a two-night stay, a dinner at West 82 Bar & Grill and a snorkeling trip to swim with Crystal River’s wintering manatees.
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Good places to see manatees in the wild when it’s cold in Florida

From observation decks to snorkeling tips, here is where you can spot the wintering marine mammals as temperatures start to drop.
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Paintings help preserve quaint cottages in Indian Rocks Beach

A trio of artists create canvases of the houses along Gulf Boulevard, reminding people why they want to live in the small homes instead of high-rise condos.
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Four easy steps to creating the perfect beach sunset selfie

Taking a little time to set up your photo the right way (and learning the secrets of your shoe) will work wonders.
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Key West's annual Fantasy Fest scares up thousands of revelers

The 10-day event features parades, costume contests and more.
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Hurricane Michael dredges up 19th-century Panhandle shipwreck

The hull, originally washed up by an 1899 hurricane, shows up on Dog Island in Franklin County.
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Red Tide reaches the Space Coast

The toxic algae bloom now stretches from Miami-Dade to Brevard counties.
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Apalachicola oyster farmers dealt another blow

Already beset with problems, the industry must now recover from Hurricane Michael's destructive power.
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Search and rescue sweeps over in the Panhandle

Authorities said their teams have completed sweeps, but didn't give any finalized numbers of dead or injured from Hurricane Michael.
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Panhandle towns may not have electricity for weeks

Leaders in some counties are warning it could take up to a month to fully restore power to what is still standing and far longer for homes that were leveled and need to be rebuilt.
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Residents return a week after Hurricane Michael

People return to razed homes and looting, while utilities and cell service slowly return.
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Mexico Beach flavor may be forever changed

The 'mom and pop' feel of the tiny beach town could be gone when the town rebuilds after Hurricane Michael.
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High ground acts as a bridge to the rest of the world

Isolated by Hurricane Michael, stranded residents head to impromptu town squares to talk to friends and relatives or ask for help.
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Mexico Beach residents band together after Hurricane Michael

Neighbors help each other survive after the Category 4 storm destroys their town.
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Homeowners return to Cape San Blas to survey destruction

Hurricane Michael razed dunes and ruined houses when it made landfall nearby.
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It may be the end of the road for some on Alligator Point

Beachfront residents face a treacherous path to recovery after Hurricane Michael.
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Mexico Beach reeling from Hurricane Michael

The beach town of 1,200 was devastated by the Category 4 storm. House were destroyed and roads impassable in the aftermath.
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Red Tide reappears on Pinellas beaches after Hurricane Michael

The storm appears to have shifted the toxic algae bloom back to land on the Gulf Coast.
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Mexico Beach: Ground zero for Hurricane Michael

Early morning photos from the epicenter of the Category 4 storm reveal devastation.
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Hurricane Michael ravages Panhandle towns

The monster Category 4 ripped across communities like Mexico Beach, Port St. Joe and Panama City Beach with historic fury.
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Florida starts to assess Hurricane Michael damage

The Coast Guard had 'several rescues' in Panama City, and are working to bring water and fuel from Tallahassee to needier areas near Apalachicola.
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Hurricane Michael barrels into the Panhandle as a strong Category 4

High storm surge and winds reaching 155 mph cause at least one death after the storm comes ashore near Tyndall Air Force Base, just west of Mexico Beach.
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Tiny Port St. Joe faces Hurricane Michael's wrath

The Gulf County town faces high winds and storm surge as the Category 4 storm approaches.
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Apalachicola waits for Hurricane Michael

'Until the water comes up, we’re just waiting. There’s not much else we can do.'
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Hurricane Michael strengthens to Category 4 storm

Winds top 150 mph as monster cyclone approaches Florida's Panhandle with up to 13 feet of storm surge.
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Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Office warns Weather Channel's Jim Cantore to stay away

The authorities post a fake 'trespass warning' to the meteorologist ahead of Hurricane Michael.
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Hurricane Michael could end — or strengthen — Florida's Red Tide

The strong storm could dissipate the toxic algae in the Gulf of Mexico, or heavy rain could cause runoff that would feed the bloom with more pollutants.
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