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!

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the City of Lakeland Lakes & Stormwater division, and Keep Winter Haven Beautiful are hosting the 19th annual Project E.A.G.L.E. (Enhancing a Great Living Environment) community shoreline and litter cleanup event on April 30th from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  The City of Lakeland staging area will be at Lake Parker’s Sertoma Park (1800 E. Memorial Blvd.)  Volunteers may help clean the shoreline of Lake Parker, or clean the lake of their choice.  Volunteers will receive a Project E.A.G.L.E. t-shirt, and are invited to Lake Shipp Park for a hamburger lunch, provided by the Texas Cattle Company, and family fun activities from 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. 

Call 863-834-8429 or email to register.

Direct Air announces nonstop service to San Juan, Puerto Rico and Plattsburg NY/Montreal from Lakeland Linder Regional Airport


Direct Air, an air service with corporate headquarters located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina officially announced today it has added two additional destinations. This announcement comes within two weeks of Direct Air’s previous news that they will begin providing service between Lakeland and Hagerstown, MD; Myrtle Beach, SC; Niagara Falls, NY/Toronto and Springfield, IL.

To the south, San Juan, the popular U.S. territory is not only an exciting travel destination itself but also the cruise ship gateway to the southern Caribbean.  To the north, Plattsburgh Regional Airport is often referred to as ‘Montreal’s U.S. Airport”. It is a preferred choice over the expensive and congested Montreal airports due to the convenience and one hour drive proximity.

Beginning November 19th, 2011, two NON STOP flights per week departing and returning on Wednesday and Saturday will begin to San Juan, Puerto Rico and Plattsburg, NY.

“The announcement today by Direct Air of additional air service to Plattsburgh, NY and San Juan, Puerto Rico solidifies the commitment Direct Air has made to this region and Lakeland Linder Regional Airport”, said Lakeland Airport Director Gene Conrad.  “Plattsburgh’s proximity to Montreal, Canada makes it extremely easy for Canadians across the border to fly to Central Florida. The new flights to San Juan, Puerto Rico will benefit the local Puerto Rican community that resides in Central Florida.”

Direct Air President Ed Warneck said, “The partners of Direct Air are excited to expand service from our newest Florida destination. We all agree that with the support of the community, together we will be able to establish Lakeland Linder as the preferred gateway to the Central Florida region.”


Direct Air has offered non-stop and direct jet flight service since 2007. Direct Air will be flying its one-millionth passenger in 2011.  Current markets include; Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Pittsburgh, Pa. ; Newark, N.J.; Lakeland, Fla.; Hagerstown, Md.; Columbus, Oh.; Plattsburgh, N.Y.; Toledo, Oh.; Kalamazoo, Mich.; Worcester, Mass.; Allentown, Pa.; Rockford, Ill.; Springfield, Ill.; Melbourne, Fla.; Orlando-Sanford, Fla.; Punta Gorda, Fla., West Palm Beach, Fla.; and Nassau, Bahamas. All Direct Air flights are public charters operated by Sky King Airlines, Xtra Airways, Vision Airways, and Dynamic Airlines featuring First Class and coach leather seating.

As part of the opening celebration Direct Air is offering passengers flying between these new markets a special introductory fare of $79 for 79 hours for domestic flights and $99 for 99 hours for flights between Lakeland and Puerto Rico. This promotion begins on Wednesday, April 13th, 2011.

Reservations can be booked online at or by calling Direct Air’s Reservations Department at 1-877-432-3473.

Airfares are one-way, subject to availability and subject to change.  Fares do include Federal Excise Tax of 7.5%.  Fares do not include Federal Flight Segment Tax of $3.70, September 11th Security Fee of $2.50, and Passenger Facility Charges of up to $4.50 per person per direction of travel. Passenger usage fee $13.00 each way, APHIS fee $5.00, Immigration user fee $7.00, U.S. departure tax $16.30 each way, BS passenger processing $6.00, BS departure tax $20.00, BS Airport facility fee $20.00, Bahamas security charge $21.50.   A convenience fee of $15 per direction will be assessed for customers who book at or via the call center.  Reservations booked by calling Direct Air’s Reservations department will cost an additional $20 per person each way, reflecting Convenience fee and $5.00 call center fee.  Puerto Rico and Bahamas Flights may include arrival in the US inspection fees up to $17.50, Passenger Facility Charges (PFC) up to $18.00 per round trip passenger in local airport charges, and other government taxes and fees (including U.S. government excise tax) of up to $100.00 per round trip. Additional taxes, fees, and airport charges may apply up to 22% of the fare value per country. See Operator-Participant Agreement for full disclosure.


April 12th, 2011

Contact: Kelsey Dunn, Direct Air Media Relations,

Telephone: 843-916-9700,



Florida’s winter is long gone and many homeowners are anxious to replace frost-damaged plants and take on other outdoor digging projects – a perfect time for the reminder, “always call 811 before digging.”

Throughout April, Sunshine State One Call and your neighborhood utilities will promote National Safe Digging Month through statewide outreach and local events. The campaign is designed to remind Florida’s residents of the complex network of wires, cables and pipelines located underground. Striking one of these underground utility lines while digging could injure you or others, disrupt service to an entire neighborhood, and potentially result in fines and repair costs.

A call must be placed to 811 before every digging project, from simple landscaping like planting trees or shrubs, to placing a fence or installing a mailbox. There are 170,000 underground utilities damaged annually across the nation, and one out of every three incidents is the result of not calling 811. Don’t become part of the statistic – make sure to call 811!

Here’s how it works:

  • One free, simple phone call to 811 makes it easy for Sunshine State One Call to notify all appropriate utility companies of your intent to dig.
  • Call at least two full business days before digging to give utility companies enough time to properly mark their lines.
  • When you call 811, you will be asked for the location and description of your digging project.
  • Sunshine State One Call notifies affected utility companies who then send a professional locator to the proposed dig site to mark the approximate location of underground utilities.
  • Once lines have been properly marked, roll up those sleeves and dig carefully within 24 inches of any marks in your project area.

Visit for more information about 811 and the call-before-you-dig process.

Sunshine State One Call of Florida is a private, not-for-profit, corporation created by Florida Legislature in 1993 with the Underground Facility Damage Prevention and Safety Act, Chapter 556, Florida Statutes. It educates excavators and homeowners on the “call 811 before digging” process and provides the free system excavators use to notify utility owners of intended digging.

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Hop on down and help celebrate Max & Ruby coming LIVE to Lakeland in May with a pre-event box office party on April 15th  from 5pm – 7pm at The Lakeland Center. Kids can learn about the importance of party manners with The Central Florida Etiquette Academy and enjoy crafts, games and refreshments. Admission and parking for the pre-event celebration is free and the Box Office will be open for discounted ticket sales for Max & Ruby LIVE on May 26th with performances at 4pm and 7pm. Max 98.3 will also be on hand with a live remote broadcast.

The Central Florida Etiquette Academy features unique training from certified etiquette instructor Lynda Taylor. A graduate of The Academy of Etiquette and Protocol in Orlando, Lynda has been teaching the time honored art of proper manners for nearly 35 years and is the founder of her own successful academy.  She will provide a “kid friendly” presentation on the importance of party manners and all attendees will receive a special certificate of achievement.

Tickets for Max & Ruby Bunny Party LIVE are on sale for $21.50 and $35 at The Lakeland Center Box Office,, charge by phone 800-745-3000 and all Ticketmaster outlets.


Max and Ruby are brother and sister; Max is the bunny that is always finding ways of getting around his chores and other duties. He is very mischievous and needs to be taught his manners in order to stay out of trouble. Meanwhile his sister, Ruby is suppose to be looking out for Max and keep him out of trouble and she tries to teach him some valuable lessons regarding manners and how to treat his friends. So, hop along on the bunny trail with Max & Ruby to discover how a bunny is suppose to use everyday manners whether it’s playing with friends, at a party or having dinner with your family

The Lakeland Center is conveniently located minutes between Orlando and Tampa in Lakeland, Florida off I-4 on Lime Street; The Lakeland Center is a short drive from anywhere in Central Florida. Regular box office hours are Monday-Friday 9:30am-5:30pm. For ticket information, call the Box Office at (863)834-8111 or visit our website at can also be purchased at any Ticketmaster outlet, by phone 800-745-3000 or visit