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!

Come to Munn Park on Saturday, March 12, 2011 from 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. for the 9th Annual Spring Obsession, Garden and Art Festival.  Enjoy a Free family day of activities while exploring the many flowers and plants for sale, attend garden presentations, purchase art for the patio and listen to live music from the jazz band Free Time. 

After the unusually cold winter we have experienced, it is time to stock up on all your spring plant needs including: flowering plants for house and garden, outdoor plants for your landscaping, and garden art and accessories to spice up your lawn or patio. 

Learn about jazzing up your yard from landscaping professionals as part of the garden presentations.  There will also be a presentation on rain barrels and water conservation with rain barrels available for purchase.

Delight in hard to find exotics, orchids, Florida native plants, roses, herbs, gingers, and more as you stroll through Munn Park to the sounds of Free Time.  Free Time will play an eclectic and entertaining blend of musical styles ranging from Al Jarreau and Stevie Wonder to Bob Marley, Miles Davis, Grover Washington, Duke Ellington and BB King. 

Spring Obsession is a non-profit event with this year's proceeds going toward new bike racks for downtown that are functional and aesthetic so they look like pieces of art.

In conjunction with Spring Obsession the City of Lakeland, Polk County and the Southwest Florida Water Management District will host a rain barrel sale in the Bay Street Parking lot at 315 N. Tennessee.  These ergonomic 55 gallon rain barrels are manufactured with the maximum recyclable content and they will be on sale for $60.  The barrels include insect resistant stainless steel filter and spigot.


The City of Lakeland and the Lakeland Fire Department are very proud to announce that as of Monday, January 31, 2011 the Lakeland Fire Department has expanded its Advanced Life Support (ALS) non-transport program to cover all areas within the City of Lakeland.  Prior to implementing this change, only half of the Lakeland fire stations had the capability of providing ALS service. 

ALS can best be described as a higher level of emergency medical care, usually provided by emergency medical technicians or paramedics. Typically ALS includes invasive techniques such as IV therapy, intubation, and life saving drug administration.

“We are very excited about this change and are certain that it’s a huge benefit to all of our citizens,” stated Assistant Chief Doug Riley.  “Implementing these changes will allow us to reduce the amount of time it takes to put certified paramedics on the scene of an emergency medical call.  The ability to deliver ALS care quickly contributes to our commitment to provide the highest level of service.”

Through a partnership with Polk County Emergency Medical Services (PCEMS) and under the medical direction of Greg White, M.D., the Lakeland Fire Department now has trained paramedics at all but one fire station and these paramedics have the capability to provide the highest quality emergency medical care.  The only station that is not designated as an ALS station is the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport substation that houses the specialized Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting unit. 

For more information regarding the Lakeland Fire Department, please visit

The City of Lakeland’s Kelly Recreation Complex will be opening their doors on February 19TH  from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for their 2nd annual Open House.

The public is invited to stop by and celebrate all that the Parks & Recreation Department has to offer through various class demonstrations, kid’s activities, giveaways, and tours of the facility.  Instructors of classes from art to fitness will be onsite to answer questions. Visitors can purchase a “Big Deal” pass, only available at the Open House, for $60. The “Big Deal” pass allows 40 visits to the weight room, cardio room, and open gym activities.

Fit Niche will be on hand to measure stride and gait to help improve running or walking performance.  Camp Fire and Picasso’s Cup will be onsite doing crafts and other fun activities with kids.  There will also be bounce houses and games on the tennis courts for the younger set.

The Parks Department will also be there with some of their more interesting vehicles so our customers can learn about other important Parks services. Additionally, through donations from local businesses, there will be drawings for prizes.  Call the Kelly Recreation Complex for more information or class demonstration schedule (863) 834-3284.

The Detroit Tigers and City of Lakeland have announced a full calendar of special events that are planned in celebration of the 75th Anniversary of Spring Training in Lakeland, FL.  This anniversary week will take place February 22-27, 2011 in Lakeland, Winter Home to the Detroit Tigers and commemorate the longest standing relationship in Major League Baseball between a franchise and host city.

The week-long occasion promises many memorable moments while generating significant community goodwill.  The following special public and VIP events include:

Tuesday, Feb. 22              The 65th Annual Tigers Barbecue (hosted by the Chamber of Commerce)

Wednesday, Feb. 23       The Tigers Diamond Gala

Thursday, Feb. 24            The 16th Annual Major League Scramble (Cleveland Heights Golf Course)

Friday, Feb. 25                   Detroit Tigers vs. Florida Southern College

“Tigers On the Town” (Downtown event featuring live entertainment, activities, etc.)

Sunday, Feb. 27                Opening Day (75th Anniversary of Spring Training)

Proceeds from these events will benefit the Detroit Tigers Foundation of Florida to benefit local area non-profits including Boys & Girls Club of Lakeland/Mulberry, Sunflower Preschool Playground, The First Tee of Lakeland, and Polk Sheriff’s Charities.

Tickets to the Tigers Barbecue, Tigers’ Diamond Gala and foursomes in the Major League Scramble will go on sales Wednesday, December 1st and will be available online at

For information on the Detroit Tigers 75th Anniversary Spring Training including a complete schedule of events and ticket information, visit