TAMPA, Fla. — At ABC Action News, we know it's the combination of all the communities that make Tampa Bay great to live in. That's why we've started a new series of reporting highlighting good things happening around town, discovering cool gems you may not know about, and uncovering the big news events impacting those areas.
On Friday, the Good Morning Tampa Bay team focused on Plant City.
Berry Interesting Facts
- Plant City is known as the Winter Strawberry Capital of the World
- The city's annual Florida Strawberry Festival started in 1930 but didn't become an annual event until 1948
- Plant City's original name was Ichepucksassa after the Indian village that once occupied this territory. So much confusion was created with the spelling and pronunciation that the Irish postmaster renamed the village Cork, after his home city.
- Plant City became incorporated in 1885 by a 49 to 1 vote. It had a population of approximately 350 people, thirteen stores, several hotels, a frame schoolhouse and two churches.
We're highlighting local programs and businesses, road safety projects and more.
This year, the Florida Strawberry Festival runs from March 4 to March 14. Gates open at 10 a.m. daily and close at 10 p.m. But due to COVID-19, things will be a little different.
ABC Action News' Paul Lagrone, a Plant City native, went Full Circle into the city's future and the role the Strawberry Festival plays.
In the past six years, the city has announced over 50 new projects, closing in on a billion dollars in capital investment and creating 2,500 new jobs.
In Plant City, you don't have to drive far to get some steps in! You can easily rack up mileage at two parks less than two miles away from each other in the downtown area.
Plus, Plant City residents and visitors have a new preserve to look forward to that will open in the coming months.
Several road projects in and around the Plant City area are set to make commuting faster and safer for drivers.
"I worked really hard for this," said Ankit. "A lot of studying. A lot of preparing for it. So, I'm very happy."
Efforts from a group called Plant City Main Street have revitalized the area by holding events and bringing in new businesses.
Keel Farms in Plant City is a winery, brewery, and a restaurant all in one. During lockdowns, ambassadors sold wine on the streets, held virtual tastings, and ramped up their wine production.
The farm's actions helped stave off the fallout from COVID-19 and help get them in a better position today than in March.