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 Newsletter of the  Ybor City Chamber of Commerce

Mid-Month November 2010
See You This Thursday For PM Networking at
The Ritz Ybor
"Tampa's Premier
Special Events Venue"
 November 18th

A Special Thanks
For Joining To


The American Cleaning Services, Inc.

Marjorie Canizares

14906 Winding Creek Ct., Suite 103 D

Tampa, FL 33618-1627


A Note Of Appreciation

To Renewed Members


Ai Collaborative, Inc.

Lynn Puckett

1901 E. 7th Ave.

Tampa, FL 33605



Colleen Chappell

1600 E. 8th Ave., Ste. A-133

Tampa, FL 33605


MC Film

Mark Bias

1901 North 15th St.

Tampa, FL 33605


University of Tampa-Naimoli Institute for Business Strategy

Dr. Jody Tompson

401 West Kennedy Blvd, Box O

Tampa, FL 33606


Click on a company name to learn more about your fellow members.


Ybor Chamber Member Spotlight


One of the Chamber's newest members, Ybor City Historic Walking Tours, is making a quick name for themselves. Tour creator, Lonnie Herman, takes participants on a 90 minute, knowledgeable and entertaining walking tour throughout historic Ybor City.

The tour starts from the Vicente Martinez Ybor statue at Centro Ybor on Seventh Avenue and is conducted by Lonnie, a Tampa resident for over three decades. A former sales and marketing executive, Lonnie has taken his love of history and encyclopedic knowledge of Ybor City, and created a fun and educational tour.

As one of his satisfied customers said,  "Our Ybor City Walking Tour was great! A lot of fun, a lot of fascinating history, it was the perfect way to see Ybor City."

We welcome Lonnie to the Chamber and appreciate him keeping the history of Ybor alive and well.

Lonnie Herman

Ybor City Historic Walking Tours


Daily Tours

Tuesday - Saturday, 11:00 am & 1:00 pm

Sunday, Noon

Reservations recommended

Adults:  $15
Children 6 - 12:  $5
5 & under are free

Member Luncheons

December 14th 2010
Keith Norden
Tampa Hillsborough Economic Corporation
Entertainment by:
HCC Jazz Ensemble

January 11th 2011
Dr. Ken Atwater
Hillsborough Community College

Tom Keating Head Shot

Alive at 25- Silver Anniversary Rocks!


The people, the press and the police - thank you, thank you, thank you for a great 25th Anniversary edition of Guavaween!  First, I would like to let the 20,000 folks in costume that came to this year's Guavaween "street party" know that we are grateful for your enthusiastic patronage and hope you will come back to visit often during the other 364 days of the year.

Second, I would like to thank the fourth estate for such comprehensive and in-depth coverage of Tampa Bay's signature Halloween event and the hundreds of thousands of dollars of positive press you gave your National Historic Landmark District.  From personal experience columns by local personalities Steve Otto and Sue Carlson to in-depth articles by senior reporters - A 25-year history by Kathy Steele and 25 things to like about Guavaween by Susan Thurston.  I even appreciated Justin George's article that quoted merchants about the sacrifice they make to host this once a year "party for the people."

Third, I sincerely appreciate the Tampa Police Department (TPD) and their colleagues at the Sheriff's Office.  Not only do our friends at TPD make this a very safe event, I believe they genuinely enjoy seeing their citizens in costume having a good time.  The first thing I look for after Guavaween is our District Captain's "after action report" and if it's good - I'm good.

I am also very proud of our Boards of Directors.  They put their "collective corporate selves" on-the-line to personally take part in the Mama Guava Stumble. This year's whacky political landscape provided a wonderful foundation for our - crazy collection of Alice in Wonderland characters cum politicians.  I look forward to Guavaween again becoming a genuine expression of the Bay Area's latent creative talent.

Barring the random asteroid, the every 600 million-year mega-eruption or the end of the Mayan Calendar in 2012 (think 64,000 year galactic cycle), Guavaween will go on.  I look forward to more participation by our Ybor City residents, artist & writers (whether members of "the Guild" or not), our emergent LGBT community and krewes from around the region (our parade is actually wet-zoned).

I'm not a wizard, but I make a pretty good "Knave of Hearts."

- Tom Keating

Chamber Happenings

November 18- PM Networking Event at The Ritz Ybor, Thurs. 5:30-7:30PM- Do you want to meet new contacts in a stress free, enjoyable atmosphere featuring drink specials and complimentary hors d'oeuvres?  If so, join the Ybor City Chamber this Thursday at the Ritz Ybor. Tours of the historic venue will be available upon request. Come out and trade business cards and walk away with contacts!

December 14- Ybor Chamber Membership Luncheon, Tues. 11:45AM- 1:15PM- Keith Norden, President and CEO of the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation, will speak with luncheon attendees about the strengths that Tampa has as a market, and the effect those strengths play in attracting new businesses to the area. The HCC Jazz Ensemble will be on hand to add some holiday cheer.  Luncheon notices will be in your email soon.

December 16- Ybor Chamber Annual Holiday Party, Thurs. 5PM- 8PM- This year's holiday party is fast becoming a "not to be missed" special engagement hosted by UBS Financial and Centro Asturiano. On top of our annual toy drive, this year benefiting Metropolitan Ministries, the event will feature Tampa's own Famunda All Stars adding their musical talents to the mix.  It's beginning to look a lot like...

Ybor Chamber of Commerce 2011 Business Directory & Community Guide-  Advertising sales are in full swing for the Chamber's 2011 Business Directory & Community Guide. To reserve space, call or e-mail Michele Keating at 813-248-3712 x 25
Announcements & Events Around the District

November 18-20- HCC Ybor's Fall Dance Concert, Thurs.-Sat. 7:30PM- Join the HCC Dance Program in the Mainstage Theatre with choreography by special guest Malick Faye and faculty. 813.253.7623

November 20- The Verizon Ybor City Heritage and Cigar Festival- 
 Join hundreds of heritage and cigar enthusiasts in Ybor's Centennial Park to celebrate the rich cultural heritage of Ybor City. Find out why cigar manufacturers made Ybor their home and how the city within a city became the first industrial town in Florida. Cigar vendors and connoisseurs will be in mass as they celebrate Tampa's favorite past time.( Admission $5, children 12 and under free). And if one day just isn't enough for you, kick things off the night before (Friday, November 19) at Fire it Up! Advance tickets $35, at door $45. 

November 19- Centro Asturiano de Tampa Hosts "Night at the Centro" featuring The Famunda All Stars, Fri. 7PM- Midnight- Come out for a night of Fun and Music in Centro's Grand Ballroom.  There is one free drink with the $10 admission. 813.229.2214


November 25- The Columbia is Open For Thanksgiving, Thurs. Starting at 11AM-  If you are in the mood for a traditional Thanksgiving meal or their traditional menu offerings, Ybor's Columbia Restaurant will be open and taking reservations for  Thanksgiving Day.  To make reservations visit

December 4- Singing Stone Gallery presents John Gascot, Sat. 10AM- 2PM- Stop by the Singing Stone and meet Latin pop painter and artist John Gascot. 813.247.2787

December 8 & 9- Academy Prep Center of Tampa presents "On Broadway", Wed. & Thurs. 7PM- Join Academy Prep for a night of scenes from legendary musicals including Rent, The Wiz, and Stomp . Come at 6:30PM and walk the red carpet! Admission is free. Donations are encouraged. 813.248.5600

December 11- A Celebration Of Art, Music, and The Holidays!, Sat. 9AM- 5PM- The City of Tampa Parks and Recreation Department in collaboration with The Ybor City Development Corporation and Florida Entertainment Group promise a Saturday filled with art and music with a holiday touch in Ybor's famed Centennial Park. 813.242.5370

LEED Gold!- Hillsborough Community College has an acknowledgment worth sharing. Their new Student Services Building has been recognized as a LEED Gold building.  Congratulations!
rick baker v2 Innovation Was Top of Mind At The November Membership Luncheon

New USF Innovation Partnership Director Rick Baker was on hand to share with members the new duties he has taken on in his new role at the University of South Florida. Since joining USF, he has been able to win a grant and was able to establish a consortium making USF the point university for conducting research related to the gulf oil spill.