5 things you need to know happening in Florida on Thursday, July 10, 2014

TAMPA - Here are five things you need to know happening in Florida on Thursday, July 10, 2014.

(1) Eddie Wayne Davis execution

Eddie Wayne Davis is scheduled to be executed at Florida State Prison in Starke on Thursday night.

Davis was convicted of kidnapping Kimberly Waters on March 4, 1994 from his ex-girlfriend's Lakeland home.

Authorities say Davis took the 11-year-old girl to his trailer where he sexually battered her. He then led her to a remote area where he attacked, strangled and then suffocated her before throwing her body in a dumpster.

Police used a DNA test to match blood found on Davis' boots to Kimbery's blood. Davis' DNA was also found under Kimberly's fingernails.

Davis will become the first Polk County inmate to be executed since 1995. The execution is scheduled to be carried out by lethal injection at 6:00 p.m.

(2) Duke Energy natural gas plant open house

Duke Energy is hosting an open house on Thursday for its proposed combined-cycle natural gas plant in Citrus County.

The purpose of the open house is to provide homeowners information about the project, including the combined-cycle natural gas technology, when it would be built, the permitting and approval process, and how the plant's environmental protections.

It would generate 1,640 megawatts to help serve Duke Energy Florida's approximately 1.7 million customers.

The plant would be built on 400 acres near the existing Crystal River Energy Complex. Construction could start as soon as early 2016 with the first energy generated by spring 2018.

The open house is informal. It is free and open to the public. Attendees can come and go as their schedule permits to speak with Duke Energy experts.

The open house is being held from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. in the Magnolia room at the Plantation on Crystal River at 9301 W. Fort Island Trail in Crystal River.

(3) 2015 Florida Teacher of the Year Award

Florida First Lady Ann Scott will help honor the 2015 Macy's Florida Department of Education Teacher of the Year during an awards gala in Orlando on Thursday night.

"It's an honor to join our best teachers in the state to celebrate their commitment to their profession and to Florida's students and families," said Fire Lady Scott. "Each of these teachers has helped shape a brighter future for Florida by positively impacting our future workers and leaders and setting them on a path to success."

Two of the five finalists are from the Tampa Bay area.

Kevin Ford, performing arts and music teacher at Tarpon Springs High School in Pinellas County.

Christie Bassett, K-12 art teacher at Highlands Grover Elementary School in Polk County.

The other three finalists are Jill Espinosa (Bell Terre Elementary School in Flagler County), Lyndsey Matheny (Citrus Elementary School in Indian River County), and Daryla Cullipher (St. Augustine High School in St. Johns County).

Each of the finalists already received $5,000 from the Macy's Foundation and a $500 Macy's gift card.

The Teacher of the Year will be awarded a $10,000 grant from the Macy's Foundation and various awards from Macy's including an all-expense paid trip for four to New York City to attend the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The awards gala is being held at 6:00 p.m. at the Hard Rock Live at Universal Studios in Orlando.

(4) Marvel Universe LIVE! debuts

The world premiere of the new Marvel Universe LIVE! arena show will be held at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on Thursday night.

The show features 25 Marvel Comics characters joining together on an epic quest to prevent shards of the Cosmic Cubs from falling into the wrong hands.

Thor's villainous brother Loki devises a scheme to clone the Cube's powers, a threat the could destroy Earth and also the entire universe.

To defeat Loki, Marvel's biggest Super Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Huk, Thor, Spider-Man and Wolverine join together to defeat the likes of Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, Red Skull, Electro and more.

Marvel Universe LIVE! will be performed seven times today through Sunday.

Show times are Thursday and Friday at 7:00 p.m.; Saturday at 11:00 a.m., 3:00 and 7:00 p.m.; and Sunday at 1:00 and 5:00 p.m.

Ticket prices start at $30. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit tampabaytimesforum.com .

(5) Blue Bell Ice Cream giveaway

Blue Bell Ice Cream is giving people living in the Tampa Bay area a way too cool off on Thursday.

In celebration of National Ice Cream Month, Blue Bell will be serving free hand-dipped ice cream at two locations in Tampa today.
 
You can receive free ice cream from the company's special events trailer as follows:

  • 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the Walmart Supercenter at 6192 Gunn Highway.
  • 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Winn-Dixie at 13016 Race Track
    • Road.

     
    There will be additional free ice cream giveaways in Largo on Friday, July 11.

    Tomorrow Blue Bell representatives will be at the Albertsons at 10500 Ulmerton Road from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and at the Walmart Supercenter at 2677 Roosevelt Boulevard from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m.

    For more information on Blue Bell Ice Cream, visit www.bluebell.com .

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