For the past nine years — yes, it’s been that long since I moved here — the Sunshine State has also been the Accordion Guy State. I’ve made a home and found my place here, and I’ve somehow managed to not become a “Florida Man” news story (I still have time…).
Florida became a state on March 3, 1845, but “for reasons” — a perfectly legal defense in Florida — National Florida Day is celebrated on January 25 each year.
I am now legally required to present a list of Florida facts, so here you go:
- Wherever you are in Florida, you are never more than 60 miles (100 km) away from the ocean.
- The average Florida temperature ranges from 65° to 70° F (18° to 21° C) in the northern region and 74° to 77° F (23° to 25° C) degrees in the southern region.
- No dinosaur fossils have ever been found in Florida. [Joey’s note: Clearly whoever wrote this fact has never been to The Villages.]
- The only place on the planet where crocodiles and alligators live together is in the Florida Everglades.
- Every public building in Florida has an outward opening door due to strong winds during hurricane season.
- Florida is the flattest state in the United States of America. Florida is so flat in fact that its highest point is the lowest high point of any state in the USA. At just 345 feet (105 meters), Britton Hill, Florida’s highest peak, is lower than many of Miami’s skyscrapers.
- Florida got its name from Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León, who named it ‘La Florida’, meaning “land of flowers”.
- Florida has the longest coastline in the continental US.
- Florida is the only state that borders the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.
- Florida is the southernmost point in the USA. Technically Hawaii is the southernmost state in the country, but geographically, Florida is the southernmost point.
- Greater Miami is the only metropolitan area in the country with two national parks. Miami is home to Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park.
How do I plan on celebrating National Florida Day? The Florida Way, of course: golf and drinks! Anitra and I both won a raffle that gets us a free session at Top Golf this evening!
I may also have to pick up some Florida Man comics…
It’s another Lunar New Year, and this one is the year of the Rabbit, which starts today (January 22nd, 2023) and end on February 9, 2024. In Chinese culture and folklore, the Rabbit astrological sign is connected with peace, prosperity, and long life, and 2023 is supposed to be a year of hope. You might want to look back at previous Rabbit years (2011 and 1999) and see how they went for you.
Here’s hoping that this Year of the Rabbit goes better than the one in this video:
More about the Year of the Rabbit
- MSNBC — It’s the Year of the Rabbit and, finally, we can all chill
- CNN — Chinese zodiac fortune predictions: What’s in store for the Year of the Rabbit?
- CNN — The Year of the Rabbit: An illustrated guide to Lunar New Year
- CBS — The Year of the Rabbit: The Lunar New Year and what it means
- Daily Express — Chinese New Year horoscope: Lucky for Ox, Tiger and Snake but unlucky for Rooster & Monkey
- Romper — Your Chinese Zodiac Horoscope for the Lunar New Year 2023
It has a certain hand-made charm, doesn’t it?
I got the mask for an upcoming fundraiser gala for the Glazer Children’s Museum, who recently became the home of the world’s largest triceratops.
Big John, the largest triceratops skeleton ever found (he’s in the Guinness Book of Records) is making his North American debut by moving to his new home: Tampa Bay, but more specifically, the Glazer Children’s Museum!
Named after the South Dakota rancher on whose land he was found, Big John is 8 meters (26 feet) long, 3 meters (10 feet) tall, and about the size of an RV. He’s also surprisingly intact, with 60% of his body bones and 75% of skull present.
Big John is a recent find — 2014! He was found by Walter Stein, founder of PaleoAdventures, who are in the business of digging up fossils for commercial sale.
The Italian firm Zoic srl purchased Big John, after which they removed the rocks from his skeleton and replicated the missing bones using a combination of sculpting, casting and 3-D printing.
Big John then went on display in Europe and was put up for auction in 2021. He was purchased by the Pagidipati family of Tampa for almost $8 million. Rather than have it sit in a private collection which almost nobody would see, the Pagidipatis chose to find a place where everyone could see it, and that place is the Glazer Children’s Museum, located right on Tampa’s Riverwalk.
“Our interest in purchasing Big John and other specimens is first and foremost to make them available to
the public and for research,” said Siddhartha Pagidipati. We want to do our part to help the Tampa Bay area become the best place in our country for families to live and raise their children.”
You’d better believe there are big plans to show off Big John properly. He’s going to be the centerpiece of a brand new exhibit at the Glazer Children’s Museum, and I’ve included the exhibit designs in this article.
You won’t have to wait long to see Big John — his exhibit at the Glazer Children’s Museum will open on Memorial Day Weekend (Saturday, May 27th)!
Want to know more? The Tampa Bay Times has an article: Tampa’s Glazer Children’s Museum to receive record-setting dinosaur skeleton for new display.
What’s the Glazer Children’s Museum?
The Glazer Children’s Museum is Tampa’s children’s museum, located in downtown Tampa. It’s the home of a lot of interactive exhibits, hands-on activities, and space to run around, climb, read, and make friends.
Children’s museums are important. They provide a place to learn and explore interests through hands-on experiences and activities. When you’re young, nothing expands your mind like interactivity that engages all the senses, and that’s something that children’s museums do very, very well.
The Glazer Children’s Museum’s mission is to serve the children of Tampa Bay by providing a clean, safe, and fun outlet for imagination and discovery.