Neighborhoods — real neighborhoods, as opposed to gated communities or arbitrarily designated areas like “New Forest Lawn Ridge Beautiful” — are defined by the experiences of their residents, and the non-residents that are drawn there. Collective experiences, sure, but also individual experiences; one of the things that makes a great neighborhood great is that people experience it differently, but those different experiences are overwhelmingly positive.
For instance, we can all agree that Seminole Heights is funky, or eclectic, or artsy, or in transition, or whatever. I only lived in the area briefly during the mid-’90s, but I’ve spent a fair amount of time there. And while my experiences there will be specifically different than those of someone who’s moved to the neighborhood since, let’s say, The Independent opened, they are also probably somewhat similar in a general sense.
Let’s find out, via a good old-fashioned springtime scavenger hunt. How many of the following dozen places and things that have defined my Seminole Heights experiences are familiar to you? Or, if they aren’t, how many degrees are they separated from your personal knowledge? I’d wager not many, and I’d be interested in knowing.
• The Old Home of Camp Hiawatha Recording Studio
• Frierson House (HINT: Your older sibling probably hooked up with a writer, musician or visual artist that lived there.)
• A house for rent or sale located outside Seminole Heights, yet advertised as being within the neighborhood
• A manmosa
• The former Spinnaker (Bonus points for knowing every other thing it’s been)
• An urban chicken coop
• River House (HINT: Your older sibling probably hooked up with a member of a grunge band there.)
• Backyard jungle cats
• Mushrooms growing in the bathroom
• A glow-in-the-dark Creature from the Black Lagoon figurine
• An apartment fireplace that looks like either a frozen lava flow or a flood of poop, depending on your perspective and the current paint color
• The location of one or more of the infamous Cephia’s Treat F.A.D. shows
Any of these ringing a bell? Let Scott know in the comments section of this story at cltampa.com. Keep up with Scott online (if you dare) at lifeasweblowit.com and on Twitter by following @harrellscott.