'Hands Across the Sand' this Saturday: Beach locations and press conference information

[image-1]Prior to the event, Pinellas County elected officials will join with local businesses at noon to explain why Florida’s coastal economy must now be protected in both Tallahassee an Washington. Among the speakers will be Pinellas County Commissioner Ken Welch, Senator Dennis Jones, Senator Charlie Justice, Rep. Rick Kriseman, Rep. James C. “Jim” Frishe, and St. Petersburg City Councilman Karl Nurse. This event will be held at 12 noon at the Sirata Beach Resort: 5300 Gulf Blvd., St. Pete Beach.

Pinellas County Beach Locations:

St. Pete Beach:

Upham Beach- 7000 Beach Plaza

Tradewinds/Sirata- 5500 & 6000 Gulf Blvd, St. Pete Beach

Public Beach- 4700 Gulf Blvd (across from Publix)

*There will be free parking at the St. Pete Beach County Park (on Gulf Blvd. north of 46th Ave., across from the Dolphin Village Shopping Center) until 2 pm for 'Hands' participants.

Treasure Island: (The Hands event takes place in conjunction with Mardi Gras Beach Midway behind the Bilmar Beach Resort, between the two access points.)

Bilmar Beach Resort- 10650 Gulf Boulevard (location of the 12 noon press conference with elected officials)

Public Beach- 11260 Gulf Blvd

Public Beach- 104 Gulf Blvd

Pass-a-Grille Beach:

Public Beach- 10th Ave and Gulf Way (north from The Hurricane Restaurant)

Tarpon Springs:

Fred Howard Park- 1700 Sunset Dr.

Madeira Beach:

Archibald Park- 15200 Gulf Blvd.

Clearwater Beach:

Pier 60- off Causeway Blvd.

Ft. DeSoto Park:

North Beach Bird Sanctuary- 3500 Pinellas Bayway South, St.Pete (parking near shelter 6)

Indian Rocks Beach:

Public Beach- 1700 Gulf Blvd (across from Guppies Restaurant & 2010 Winterfest Event)

*Indian Rocks Beach County parking lot at 1701 Gulf Blvd. is offering free event parking.

St. Petersburg:

Lassing Park- Beach Dr. SE at 18th Ave S.

Redington Shores Beach:

Public Beach: 18200 Gulf Blvd.

Gulfport Beach:

Public Beach- 5500 Shore Boulevard South (next to the Casino)

Belleair Beach:

Morgan Dr. Beach access- Morgan Dr. and Gulf Blvd.

View the complete list of Florida beaches where events are scheduled: www.handsacrossthesand.org.

Directions to press conference at Sirata’s beachfront North Deck: Enter Sirata Beach Resort entrance, turn right, driving under registration portico. Right, then left past Avis building, another left to park near yellow wall with sign for “north deck” on left (beach access is on the right).

As Mitch Perry reported in this week's Creative Loafing cover story, this Saturday, February 13, Florida residents and tourists will be gathering at Pinellas Suncoast beaches and dozens of beaches statewide, joining hands to show a united front to defend Florida’s beaches against offshore and nearshore oil drilling during the ‘Hands Across the Sand’ event.

Among the participants will be organizations like the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce, environmental organizations like the Sierra Club, the Audubon Society and the Defenders of Wildlife, as well as concerned citizens and students. This event will bring together a wide spectrum of people who will stand as a united front to show Tallahassee and Washington their commitment to the protection of our coastal environment, economy, and their support for clean, renewable energy.

There will be participants along 15 Pinellas beaches, from Tarpon Springs to Ft. De Soto to St. Petersburg. The event will begin at 1 pm (EST), with people joining hands from 1:30 pm until 1:45 pm. Participants are asked to wear a black hat or a black shirt. (See Pinellas locations below.)

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