City News Blog


This is the official blog of the City of Lakeland, Florida. Check back frequently to stay up to date with all that going on in our beautiful city!

The City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Department will host a public workshop seeking input from the skateboarding community on Monday, June 18th at 7 p.m. in the Magnolia Building (702 East Orange Street).  The City of Lakeland is currently exploring options for a new City owned skate park and facilitators want direct feedback from end users on what they would like to see incorporated into the park.

The workshop will be facilitated by Littlejohn Engineering and Team Pain, a skater owned company that designs and builds skate parks. Skateboarders and those interested in the project are invited to attend the workshop so community ideas can be incorporated into the park’s design.

Littlejohn Engineering has managed the infrastructure planning, surveying and engineering of well over 3,000 projects throughout the United States. The firm oversees projects that involve multiple disciplines that include landscape architecture, urban planning, municipal and utility engineering, community planning and economic development.

Team Pain specializes in custom concrete skate park facilities. The company has been providing design and construction experience to municipalities around the globe in concrete skate park facilities since 1997. Team Pain has over 30 years experience with professional riders and they are known for their challenging “first-ever” structures that push the limits of skateboarding.

The City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Department is in the preliminary stages in designing a new skate park that is being planned for construction this winter and opening spring 2013.  It is very important to the design team that elements from local skateboarders are incorporated into the design.  Those interested in skateboarding should attend the workshop meeting on Monday, June 18th at 7 p.m. in the Magnolia Building.  For more information regarding the workshop, please contact Pam Page with the City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Department at 863/834-6088 or via email at


The City of Lakeland celebrates Multimodal Month during June.  The kick-off to this event will be on June 1st from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. as part of the First Friday festivities themed “Taking it to the Streets”.  Downtown Lakeland streets will be filled with bicycles, running shoes and buses.  Local bicycle and fitness shops will be on location along with running clubs, cycling clubs and the Citrus Connection will show off their latest buses.  The Florida Department of Transportation will also be on hand with a bike rodeo and free bicycle helmets for younger riders.  The Multimodal Month celebrations will be combined with the usual First Friday atmosphere including live music and hands-on activities.

Tony Delgado, Deputy City Manager for the City of Lakeland said, “The goal of Multimodal Month is to facilitate the use of multiple modes of transportation, leading to a reduction in automobile use and vehicle miles traveled.”  Multimodal refers to the various transportation resources that include pedestrian foot traffic, bicycles, car pooling and mass transit that are used to assist residents in getting from point A to point B. 

The Citrus Connection is promoting Multimodal Month with a number of events that introduce art in the daily commute. Citrus Connection riders will be able to vote on their favorite artistic bus wrap.  Fine art disciplines that include painting, poetry, music and dance will be featured June 18th – 21st on various bus lines during peak travel times starting in the mornings at 8 a.m-10 a.m. and the afternoons from 3:30-5:30 p.m.  On June 22nd, the Lakeland Downtown Bus Terminal will host musicians and other live art forms throughout the day.  Later that afternoon, the terminal will be transformed into a catwalk when a mobile Platform Art Fashion Show arrives by bus around 5:30 p.m.

Multimodal planning includes the design of a safe, comfortable and attractive pedestrian environment, with convenient interconnection to transit.  Common elements include the presence of mixed-use activity centers, connectivity of streets and land uses, transit-friendly design features, and accessibility to alternative modes of transportation. Delgado said, “We have a number of partners who have come together with a number of great events to help introduce our citizens to alternative modes of transportation.” 

For more information and to find a calendar of all the events planned for Multimodal Month, please visit  Commuters and multimodal participants will find a host of useful items on the site including a tool to track walking, biking, carpooling and mass transit use.

The Lakeland Police K-9 Unit and the United States Police Canine Association will host the National Detector Dog Field Trials in Lakeland on May 20 - 23, 2012.  Eighty teams from across the United States are expected to compete during this week. 

The United States Police Canine Association National Detector Dog Trials is a certification event that tests the proficiency of K-9 dogs and their handlers. There are five detector dog trial categories including narcotic, explosive, arson, cadaver, and game detection.

The LPD K-9 Unit has a rich history of pride, loyalty, and commitment. The Unit has received numerous awards for work performed on the street and in competitions.

A public K-9 demonstration will be held on May 22, 2012 at 6:30 PM Lakeland High School. 


Photo Opp: COL Commission Kicking Soccer Balls

LAKELAND, FL (May 15, 2012) - On Friday, May 18 at 11 a.m. the City of Lakeland will celebrate the grand opening of Cypress Youth Sports Complex located at 2125 S. Edgewood Drive.  This new $1.2 million sports complex located on 33 acres includes football and soccer fields for recreational leagues.  Currently there are restroom facilities and four fields that are in use with two additional fields expected to be ready in July.   

City Manager Doug Thomas said, “The land for the park was donated by Ed Holloway in 2007 and we have been working on getting this park completed since then.  There is a real need for athletic fields to offset the demand set by our recreational leagues.”  He added, “The fields at Cypress Youth Sports Complex will alleviate some of the demand but we know that even more fields are needed as the City continues to grow.” The complex is being built in phases and once completed, there will be a playground, an exercise path and additional sports fields by 2019.

 In addition to the recreation league sports that are currently using the fields, South McKeel Academy Middle School also uses the complex during physical education classes.  South McKeel Principal Judith Morris said, “This additional recreation space has been a wonderful addition for us.  We had very little green space for the students and our partnership with the City really assists in the development of our students.”

The festivities will start at 11 a.m. with the South McKeel Middle School 5th, 6th and 7th grade chorus singing the National Anthem followed by a Patriotic Medley.   The students at South McKeel will then present and read their own proclamation honoring the park with Mayor Fields accepting the proclamation.  As a highlight and to christen the park, the Lakeland City Commission will shoot soccer balls with assistance from McKeel students with a special guest on goal. 

Mayor Fields said, “I am really excited about the festivities and I understand that the City has acquired goalie attire for me to use during the soccer shootout.”  He added, “The City is very grateful for the donation of the land from Mr. Holloway.  We know there is a crucial need for youth athletic fields and the Cypress Youth Sports Complex is a great addition to our park inventory.”