In this episode a tanker leaves one person dead and 1-75 closed for hours; Wawa is seeking to hire thousands of workers in six states; One-hundred-fifty-five Pinellas students will receive college scholarships tomorrow; and The Straz Center plans on expanding onto the Hillsborough River.
Social media has never been more prevalent in college and professional sports than it is today. At the University of South Florida, Mike Farrell is the man behind the computer screen.
“A lot of it is one, developing a voice for our social channels and then two creating content that’s going to engage our fanbase,” Farrell said.
As the Director of Digital Content, Farrell is in charge of churning out vines, tweets, pictures and more across all of USF Athletics’ social media platforms every day.
“One of the things we want to do and want to push is to create stuff that is engaging, stuff that people want to consume, share, retweet and help spread the brand,” Farrell said.
One of the most important days for any athletic department each year is National Signing Day. Student athletes from all over the country officially sign with the school of their choosing. The content created by Farrell and his team made waves on a national level, including an appearance on Yahoo! Sports Dr. Saturday blog.
“This year in particular we had a couple national organizations, blogs, write about some of the things that we did,” Farrell said. “It was a lot of hard work, a lot of people put in a lot, a lot of hours for what’s really just a glorified morning. But I do think that it pays dividends in the end.”
The work Farrell puts in on a daily basis is critical to the growing online presence that is USF Athletics.
“For a large subset of our fans, if you don’t have that presence, you’re irrelevant,” Senior Associate Director of Athletics Andrew Goodrich said.
Even though Farrell is fully focused on the day-to-day task of enhancing USF Athletics’ presence online, he doesn’t lose sight of the big picture.
“When one person leaves, somebody else can come in and there’s no drop,” Farrell said. “That’s the USF brand. That’s the USF Athletics brand. That’s the USF football brand. There’s no change. That needs to be a constant.”
In this episode: a 72 year-old bicyclist dies; An argument in St. Pete leaves one hospitalized; Pinnelas beaches warn of rip currents; The tallest building in St. Pete will be built Friday; Plans to renovate Tampa Park.
Even though some people view Gasparilla as a holiday to make it an all day party Marilyn Pereira wasn’t convinced. Pereira decided to stay away from the madness at Bayshore Boulevard and work a double shift as a server at World of Beer on Saturday. To her there was not much of an appeal to attend the event. It was more important to her to make some money than see the parade.
“I didn’t request off for Gasparilla because I didn’t really even know what it was,” Pereira said. “I just moved here and I didn’t know Gasparilla was today until pretty much everyone I work with requested off.”
Sometimes called the Mardi Gras of Florida; the Gasparilla Parade of Pirates attracts thousands to Tampa every year. The parade takes over the streets of downtown for a majority of the day. People from all over Florida make the trip to celebrate, and most of them are dressed up like pirates.
Pereira worked all morning and through most of the evening. She said she saw an increase in customers during her second shift Saturday evening after the parade had ended.
She described large groups of people of all ages weighed down with beads and wearing fake black beards and hats with giant feathers. She seemed to find the outfits a little silly. Even though she made more money than she had originally expected, she decided it might be worth it to attend Gasparilla next year.
“Yeah I would go. It would’ve been fun to tag along with someone,” Pereira said. “Maybe next year.”
In this episode: A fatal crash leaves one dead and four hospitalized; Dashboard footage reveals a Sarasota wrong-way driver; Gunn Highway and Linebaugh Avenue will undergo road construction to enhance safety; Scientists come to Florida to discuss citrus greening; The Tampa Convention Center is providing tours of the Spanish ship, El Galeon.
In this episode: new ordinance for decriminalizing marijuana; Toyota recalls select cars for seat belt malfunctions; Clearwater is voted best beach by TripAdvisor; downtown Clearwater railroad crossing under construction; Busch Gardens releases new ride.
In this episode: more funding for mosquito control to prevent Zika spread; Sarasota schools considering transgender bathrooms; Triple-A pothole damage study; former athlete arrested on sex charges; theater museum opens and University Mall in Tampa.
In this episode: a student was arrested for loading a gun on a school bus, a shoplifter’s death is ruled a homicide, arrests are made in a string of car burglaries, a stolen car is crashed through a house, and the Medical Center of Trinity is lighting up red.
In this episode: Tampa Bay Crime Stoppers is working to deter gun violence; a Florida law firm is filing an energy drink lawsuit; medical marijuana legalization is resurfacing in the Florida House; Tampa Bay’s tourism industry is growing; the Tampa Bay Rays are releasing ticket promotions.
In this Florida Focus News Brief: A man is shot in the face at a Super Bowl party; a man is accused of attempted murder on a Pasco County deputy; Chipotle opened four hours late nationwide; Governor Rick Scott came to Tampa to announce 160 new jobs; Beyonce announced her new tour will kick off in Florida.
In this Florida Focus brief, record high temperatures in Tampa for the month of November; Governor Rick Scott is asking lawmakers for one billion dollars in tax cuts; two people have died after their car crashes into a West Tampa home; a police raid uncovers a Tampa grow house; and Tampa gets a first look at the film “Debt of Honor: Disabled Veterans in American History.”
In this Florida Focus brief: an escaped inmate is spotted, a gas station is robbed in Temple Terrace, an RV fire breaks out, a Lakeland girl is arrested after using a social media site to post a video of herself drunk driving, and the Tampa Bay Bucs and Vision Mobile give free eye exams at a local elementary school.