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Monday, Aug 20, 2018
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The Daystarter: Latest on potential tropical system; taking action along dangerous Bayshore Boulevard; Denis Philips talks hurricanes and beer; Memorial Day things to do

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.

• Today’s forecast calls for warm and humid weather up until lunch time. Then in the late afternoon there’s an up to 80 percent chance of thundershowers and the rain won’t let up until the evening, according to the National Weather Service. Also keep an eye on Invest 90L, the storm brewing in the Caribbean Sea that could wash out your Memorial Day weekend plans.

• For music fans, this nasty weather couldn’t be coming at a worse time. Saturday brings three huge concert festivals to different corners of Tampa Bay: The Sunset Music Festival at Raymond James Stadium, the Tampa Bay Margarita Festival at Curtis Hixon Park and the 97X Barbecue Music and Arts Festival at Vinoy Park. Jay Cridlin has the details on how the three fests are preparing/.

• As you head out for your morning commute, check out our live blog for the latest traffic updates and road conditions across Tampa Bay.

• Here are the top things to do today including a free whiskey tasting with country music star John Rich (of Big and Rich) and the Florida Orchestra Pops offer a patriotic salute for Memorial Day weekend.

• Keep an eye on our Soundcheck music blog as we keep an eye on whether the rainy weather cancels the many music festivals and outdoor concerts this holiday weekend.

• Even if it does rain all weekend we still have you covered. Here are 9 things to do if you want to come out of the rain this weekend. (Having a domed baseball field sure comes in handy this weekend.)

• Here are all the new developments from Wednesday’s deadly racing incident on Bayshore Boulevard: A 24-year-old mother was pushing her 18-month-old daughter’s stroller when police said a racing car struck both of them. The mother, Jessica Raubenolt, died soon after the crash, and on Thursday police said her daughter Lillia was pronounced dead. Also read more about Jessica Raubenolt from her family and find out what action the city is taking on Bayshore just hours after the fatal crash.

• It’s no surprise that Bayshore fills daily with people running, biking and walking their dogs. It has been called the world’s longest continuous sidewalk and a linear park, site of the annual Gasparilla pirate parade and countless foot races. It is idyllic. It can also be dangerous, columnist Sue Carlton writes.

• Denis Phillips cracks a pop-top and pulls a can that looks a lot like him to his lips. "It’s got that citrusy feel to it," he says. "Which is a Florida thing. That’s not bad." Indeed, there’s a grapefruit finish to Rule #7 Hurricane Saison, a new brew produced by Safety Harbor’s Crooked Thumb Brewery in tribute to Phillips, the longtime chief meteorologist for WFTS-Ch. 28. The beer will be released Sunday at the brewery, in cans modeled after Phillips’ signature suspenders, tie and banker stripe.

• The day after the Tampa Bay Lightning’s season came to a crushing end in a Game 7 Eastern Conference final loss, it was time to take stock. Columnist Martin Fennelly asks whether the window has closed on the Lightning’s chances of winning the Stanley Cup, or can they climb through that window next season? Tom Jones writes that this team is young enough and good enough to win it all, which is why management shouldn’t tear this roster up and start all over again.

• Danica Patrick wasn’t a huge success on the track, but she left an undeniable imprint on racing, as she prepares for her final race: Sunday’s Indy 500. Read more about how she changed racing at tampabay.com/sports then come back later in the morning as we attempt to answer: If Danica helped increase the number of girls racing, why haven’t we seen that trickle up to the top yet?

• The long, strange saga of the Wall Springs Park observation tower is finally coming to a close as county officials hope the rebuilt structure, along with refurbished decking leading up to it, will be open in time for the Fourth of July.

• Well, this is certainly different. Porn stars are doing stand-up comedy at a St. Petersburg club tonight.

• Joe Capitano Sr. invested in the 1400 block of E Seventh Avenue in 1985, never doubting the huge potential of the property for Ybor City. But the deal to build a $52 million boutique hotel on the site didn’t start to come together until six years ago, when a couple of young newcomers to the historic district sat down with Capitano for cafe con leche at La Tropicana Cafe. Richard Danielson provides the details.

• Columnist Ernest Hooper speaks for so many as he mourns the closing of Lee Roy Selmon’s original location on Boy Scout Road in Tampa. Not to mention mourning the loss of Sweet Heat Fried Chicken and Mama’s Meatloaf.

• Memorial Day is a time to say "thank you" to our veterans. Check out our list of free offers for them to enjoy. Some even last all summer.

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