What did you do on the Fourth of July? Well, hopefully you didn’t stay home, because there were plenty of options, which as a regular reader of The Laker/Lutz News, you already knew about.
The Shops at Wiregrass kicked things off with its annual Fourth of July celebration July 3, complete with bicycle decorating contests, watermelon eating and Miss and Mr. Firecracker. It continued Friday morning in Lutz with its annual Fourth of July parade, which had large crowds lined up along Lutz Lake Fern Road leading into the Lutz Depot.
And if that wasn’t enough, the fun continued Saturday in places like Avalon West and Connerton, with booths, games and fireworks.
Want to see some of the great images from those events? Well, you can find them right now in this week’s print edition of The Laker/Lutz News. If you don’t have a newspaper in front of you, you can see all the picture in our free e-edition by clicking here.
Also, a Lutz News reader, Tracy Gaschler, submitted some of her own pictures from the Lutz parade. You can check those out on our Facebook page by clicking here.
If you were at any of those Fourth of July events, then there’s no doubt in your mind that we’re in the middle of summer, and it can be hot. But how do you enjoy the sun and fun, without ending up in the emergency room?
Three local doctors from places like Florida Hospital Zephyrhills, Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel and St. Joseph’s Hospital-North shared some advice on how to stay safe while celebrating summer whether it’s on the road, in the water, or in the outdoors.
But it’s not just about keeping yourself safe, but children, too. And they require constant vigilance, especially when they are in the water.
“Don’t take a break to get on the phone,” Dr. Javier Gonzalez, assistant medical director of the emergency department at the Zephyrhills hospital, told reporter B.C. Manion. “I hear that all the time, ‘I just went out for a second to speak to somebody or to pick up the phone.’ Before they know it, two minutes have passed by and the child is dead at the bottom of the pool.”
Another key safety tip is to stay hydrated, and not just when you’re in the heat — but drinking plenty of water before you go out is essential too.
“You’re losing water with every breath you take, you’re losing water with the heat itself,” said Dr. Michael Longley, medical director of the emergency department at the Wesley Chapel hospital. “You’re losing water with sweating and you’re losing water with the activity that you’re doing. It’s compounded and there’s just no way to keep up if the tank isn’t full to being with.”
To see what else these doctors, along with Dr. Katrina Cordero, has to say about summertime protection, check out the print edition of this week’s The Laker/Lutz News, or you can read it for free in our e-edition by clicking here.
Finally, Pasco County sheriff Chris Nocco learned Tuesday that the first draft of the county’s budget for the next year will include more than $5 million he’s requested in additional funds to help stave off the departure of deputies to neighboring counties. But what is the long-term plan for the sheriff’s office?
Probably the biggest thing on the drawing board is creating a fourth district for deputies, based out of the Land O’ Lakes and Wesley Chapel area.
“we are going to need many more deputies, and we’re going to need a fourth district in the (State Road) 54 corridor,” Nocco told reporter Michael Hinman. “We need to have a stronger presence in the Land O’ Lakes and Wesley Chapel area. Deputies who serve that area right now are based out of Dade City, and there has to be something much closer to serve those needs.”
However, many of those plans will require money — something Nocco believes Pasco County commissioners are supportive, since public safety is a key factor to continued growth and happy residents.
“We are not wasting taxpayer dollars,” Nocco said. “Instead, we are very efficient. I know our commissioners are being pulled in a thousand different directions, but I also think they realize that public safety is a priority.”
You can read more about Nocco’s plans in the print edition of The Laker, or you can read our free e-edition by clicking here.
All of these stories and more can be found in this week’s The Laker/Lutz News, available in newsstands throughout east and central Pasco County as well as northern Hillsborough County. Find out what has your community talking this week by getting your local news straight from the only source you need.
If The Laker/Lutz News is not coming to your door, call us to see where you can get your copy at (813) 909-2800, or read our free e-edition by clicking here.