City News Blog


The latest happenings in your city government.



David Hall
City of Lakeland
Parks & Recreation


(October 27, 2011) – The City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Department is proud to host the 31st Annual Snowfest at Lake Mirror on Saturday December 3, 2011 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. 

This year's event will feature the traditional Snow Mountain and also a Snow Slide!  A visit from Santa Claus, children's entertainment, inflatables and food vendors will complete the day. 

Price for admission to the Snow Mountain and Snow Slide will be a donated canned food item or a $1.00 donation. All canned food items will be donated to Polk County Senior Orphans charity. Admission to the inflatables will be $1.00.

Arts & Crafts Vendors are being sought to participate in the event.  For more information, please call David Hall at (863) 834-3284.



Beginning Monday, October 31, contractors working for the city of Lakeland will be resurfacing roads in the following areas:  Hawthorne, Woodbine, Hibiscus, S Palm Dr, Brandon Rd, Woodward St, Troy Ave, skipper place and young place.

There will be no road closures, but delays can be expected.  City personnel will be on site to assist with any concerns.

For the next several weeks motorist can expect temporary lane closures and delays while city crews are restoring Lake Beulah drive to a brick street. Areas impacted will be from Lemon Street around the north side of the lake to 5 points.

City crews will be upgrading the sidewalks along both sides of Main street from Bartow hwy to fern road. Lane closures can be expected.

Contact Michael Whigham at 834-3300 with questions and continue to check this number (8 3 4 r o a d) for updated information.

The Lakeland Police Department has continued to collect old relics and equipment used in the early days of policing and has added many new items to the museum.  This historic display is located on the second floor in the community room of the police station located at 219 North Massachusetts Avenue, Lakeland, FL.  Identification cards of retired officers along with a few new vintage pictures have been added to the museum including an article featuring the Lakeland Police Department as the best dressed department in the nation in 1981.   

There is also a framed presentation on the “Drunk-O-Meter” machine that was the first of its kind requiring suspected drunk drivers to blow into a balloon that was then placed onto a tube on the machine where alcohol content could be determined scientifically.   Prior to the use of this device, police officers would take the suspected drunk driver to a nearby doctor who would determine the suspect’s level of intoxication by a variety of observations.  The Drunk-O-Meter was replaced by the “Breathalyzer” in the late 1960’s.

The historic display items will be updated and rotated every few months to keep the museum fresh.  The Lakeland Police Museum would also like to request donations from the public of any old items they may wish to donate.  Old photographs, police equipment, newspaper articles, and other items would be appreciated and will help to preserve history.  Please contact Sergeant Gary Gross, Lakeland Museum Curator, at 863.834.6900 if you would like to donate items.

Eighty-nine swans on Lakes Morton, Wire and Mirror were herded into cages, on Tuesday, October 25, 2011, to await their annual health physicals on Wednesday. 

Each year, the City of Lakeland’s Parks and Recreation Department rounds up the swans to check for health issues, check weight and have microchips inserted, if not already, for tracking purposes.  There are two primary reasons the birds are inspected each year:  to insure that there are no major health concerns and to narrow down the population on the City’s Lakes. 

“Our target number on Lake Morton is 50 Swans,” remarked Bill Tinsley, Director of Parks and Recreation.  “This number ensures that there is a balance between flock population and what the habitat can support.”

This year, the swans were examined by Patrica Mattson, DVM, from Companion Animal Hospital.  The task of the swan examination begins with a weigh-in and is followed by listening for heart issues.  The veterinarian then examines the beak and inside the mouth.  Some swans are asked to “donate” stool samples for further testing.  Next, the birds feet are examined.  After the exam, unless further testing needs to be done, the bird is free to go—once let go, they couldn’t be happier. 

Parks and Recreation rounds up the swans on an annual basis to preserve these City icons for Lakeland’s citizens.  Of course if you’re looking to purchase one of the swans, you could do that too!  Approximately twelve swans will be auctioned off mid-November.  Stay tuned to learn how you can own one of these majestic birds.