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The latest happenings in your city government.


VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE OUTDOOR SCULPTURE LOCATED ON THE LEMON STREET PROMENADE


LAKELAND, FL (March 27, 2015) - Join the City of Lakeland on Friday, April 3rd as we celebrate 10 new sculptures located along the Lemon Street Promenade in downtown Lakeland that are part of the 15th Annual Florida Outdoor Sculpture Competition. Lakeland, Winter Haven and now Sebring are participating with the installation of new art to be enjoyed.

 

In Lakeland, the sculptures are displayed along Lemon Street and there will be a chance for art lovers to vote on their favorite outdoor sculpture for the coveted “People’s Choice” award from 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. during the April 3rd  First Friday event that will take place in downtown Lakeland.  The winners of the “People’s Choice Award” will be announced at 8 p.m.  The band Free Time will play at the corner of Kentucky Avenue and Lemon Street along Lemon Street as they set the mood with soothing jazz.  

 

The artist, the name of their pieces of art and the materials used to make the sculptures are listed below.

 

Ray Katz, Pontiac, MI

Around the Gate, 2010


Hanna Jubran, Grimesland, NC

Summer & Spring

 

Bob Dorsey, Lakeland, FL

Self Portrait as Armadillo, 2014

 

Carl Billingsley, Ayden, NC

Connectarc,  2014

 

Adam Walls, Hope Mills, NC

Tree, 2014


Joni Younkins-Herzog, Sarasota, FL

Delilah, 2014

 

C.R. Gray, Key West, FL

Gran-ANT


James Westermann, Morrisville, VT

Trike, 2010

 

Roger Halligan, Chattanooga, TN

Yellow Tail, 2008   

 

Jack Howard-Potter, New York, NY

Winged Glory

 

The sculptures are selected by a committee of comprised of community members and Polk Museum of Art staff for the Florida Outdoor Sculpture Competition. The sculptures are displayed for a year in downtown Lakeland, Winter Haven and Sebring. An independent judge selects the Best of Show, Second Place and Honorable Mention awards for the pieces of art.  The winners along with the “People’s Choice” award will be announced at the April 3rd  First Friday event.  There will also be live music so come out and enjoy First Friday and vote for your favorite piece of art!

 


BOTANICAL PLANT SHOW AND SALE AT HOLLIS GARDEN

TROPIFLORA PRESENTS PLANTAE EXOTICUS


LAKELAND, FL (February 26, 2015) - The City of Lakeland's Parks & Recreation department and Tropiflora will host an exotic botanical plant show and sale on Saturday, February 28th in Hollis Garden. The event will take place between 10:00AM and 4:00PM and is open to the public. Visitors will have the opportunity to purchase a variety of plants such as Bromeliads, Succulents, Hoyas, Ferns and Tillandsia air plants.

 

Tropiflora is among the top producers in the world of collector-grade Bromeliads, Succulents and exotic tropical plants. Based out of Sarasota, Florida, the nursery grows over 7,000 different plant items and has been in business for over 35 years. "We are very fortunate to partner with Tropiflora in offering this great opportunity to the citizens of Lakeland" said Stacy Smith, primary caretaker for Hollis Garden. "Guests will see some of their favorite plants and hopefully discover new and exciting species."

 

Tropiflora will accept cash, credit or checks for payment. A portion of the proceeds from the sale will go into a perpetual care fund for the maintenance of Hollis Garden.

 




SWAN FEED DISPENSERS BEING INSTALLED AT TWO LAKE MORTON LOCATIONS


LAKELAND, FL (February 23, 2015) — On Thursday, February 26th those walking around Lake Morton will see a few new additions to the landscape because the City of Lakeland is installing swan feed dispensers to help promote a healthier diet for Lakeland’s swan population.  The swan feed dispensers will be coin operated and the bubblegum type machines will vend veterinarian approved swan feed. One will be installed on the north side of the lake in front of the Chamber of Commerce and the other will be installed on the south side of the lake near Success Avenue.

 

Dr. Patricia Mattson who donates her time as Lakeland’s official swan veterinarian recently shared her report on Lake Morton’s swans after their last annual physical.  Mattson said, “The swans are consuming too much white bread and the heavy gluten diet with very little nutritional value is taking a toll on Lakeland’s swan population.”  She added, “Many of the swans have a calcium deficiency because they feast on bleached white bread.” 

 

Bob Donahay, Director of Parks & Recreation said, “The Lake Morton swans are a community icon and families have been feeding them left-over bread for decades.”  He added, “With the swan feeders, we want to educate visitors so they will know there is a better alternative than white bread.  We hope families will use the swan feed because it is specially formulated to include much needed nutrients that will help the swans stay healthy.”

 

Members from the Parks & Recreation Department who take care of the swans recently visited Lowry Park Zoo to see what type of dispensers they use to distribute animal food and similar types of vending machines were purchased for Lake Morton. The newly installed swan feeders are coin operated and the proceeds from the feeders will be used to offset the annual cost for swan food, healthcare and upkeep.  

 

It costs about $10,000 a year to feed Lakeland’s domestic swans.  Lakeland’s flock was started when Queen Elizabeth of England donated a pair swans and on February 9, 1957 the two white mutes were released on Lake Morton.


ANNUAL SWAN ROUNDUP OCTOBER 1ST
 
LAKELAND, FL (September 23, 2014) -- The City of Lakeland Parks Division will be on Lake Morton at 7:00 a.m. Wednesday, October 1st for the 34th Annual Swan Roundup.  Crews will be catching and herding the swans as the initial part of their annual veterinary check-up. The swans will be confined in large holding pens on the south side of the lake for their annual wellness examinations that will start Thursday morning, October 2nd at 7:30 a.m. with Patricia Mattson, DVM. The Annual Swan Round-Up allows Lakeland's Parks and Recreation Department to closely monitor the health and vitality of Lakeland’s swan population. 
 
The original swans on Lake Morton were donated by Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom in 1957.  As Lakeland’s swan flock grew, it became paramount to give the regal birds an annual health check so the Swan Roundup began.  This practice started in 1980 and has continued every year since then. The swans were first cared for by veterinarian (emeritus) and original "Swanvet" W.G. Gardner who recently passed but his dedication to the flock carries on with Dr. Mattson. 
 
Dr. Mattson has almost 20 years of experience in veterinary medicine.  She the owner of Companion Animal Hospital a full service facility that provides general medical care, preventive medical care, vaccinations, health certificates, caesarean section, diagnostic services, on-site kennel, on-site laboratory testing, flea control, dietary counseling, spay/neuter, declawing, radiology, general surgery, dentistry, emergency services, microchipping, pharmacy services and boarding.