On the evening of September 15, 1810, Father Miguel Hidalgo rallied Mexicans to seek independence. Mexicans worldwide commemorate that call to freedom, and in Clearwater, a street party was held on Cleveland Street to mark the start of the September 16th Mexican Independence Day celebrations.
While not as significant as the 100-gallon donors, I am proud of having donated my 45th gallon of blood on September 14th. Please consider donating to Florida Blood Services/One Blood or to a blood donation center nearest you at least once a year.
This evening I met with the Springtime City Kiwanis Club to discuss the city’s referendum issues and my work as mayor. Kiwanis was founded in 1915, and there are over 7700 clubs in 80 countries. The motto of Kiwanis is “Serving the Children of the World.” The Springtime City Kiwanis Club sponsors the Ed Wells Track Meet at Clearwater High School and participates in the city’s “Adopt a Street” program, among other activities.
Today, all firefighters of the City of Clearwater stood by the vehicles in front of their duty stations to observe a moment of silence for those who were killed in the terrorist attacks on the United States eleven years ago. Flags throughout the city were at half staff, and all of us, each in his own way, paid tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice and gave thanks for the men and women who serve us every day in fire stations, police departments, and the armed services throughout our country.
The first Sunday after Labor Day has been “Grandparents Day” since 1978. It also marks the start of “National Assisted Living Week,” and I visited The Oaks in Clearwater to present a proclamation honoring the residents and staffs of assisted living facilities throughout Clearwater. This year’s theme is “Art for the Ages” to celebrate the creativity and appreciation of the arts our grandparents gave us. The week also recognizes the commitment of assisted living professionals for the service and care they provide residents and their families.
The Blossom Montessori School for the Deaf opened in 2003. The school, located on Icot Boulevard in Clearwater, gives deaf and hearing-impaired students the opportunity to learn, just as the child who can hear. The school encourages siblings to attend school with their brother or sister who is deaf or hearing impaired. The students participate in Habitat for Humanity home dedications by bringing books for the children of the new homeowner. Today, I was honored to speak at the opening of the Family Fun Day and to be able to visit with the students.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a $100,000 donation to Clearwater for Youth on Tuesday. The funds will be used for a field on the old parking lot of Jack Russell Stadium, the former spring training home of the Philadelphia Phillies. The new field, in the North Greenwood neighborhood, will be the home of the Greenwood Panthers. Bryan Glazer, co-chairman of the Bucs, attended along with Bucs Josh Freeman, Connor Barth, Gerald McCoy, and Clearwater native Leonard Johnson. Also in attendance were Congressman Gus Bilirakis, State Representative Ed Hooper, and the entire Clearwater City Council.