Despite being largely a tourist destination lined up with world-class attractions, high-profile restaurants, and five-star hotels, Clearwater FL is also a very family-friendly community with many exemplary neighborhoods. This combined with the great infrastructure, well-established education system and numerous public amenities make the city one of the most coveted residential areas. Clearwater’s ability to incorporate livability into what is otherwise a tourism and business dominated city is quite remarkable. As such the city is and has been home to some very popular individuals through its history. Below is a list of some of its famous current and former residents:
Lynn D. Stewart
Stewart is a prominent businessman who is mainly credited with co-founding Hooters, Inc. Stewart and his five associates established the very first Hooters restaurant in the Floridian city of Clearwater in 1983. Their brand went on to grow to a giant restaurant-chain with over 430 locations around the world. Originally from Illinois, Stewart is currently a permanent resident of Florida.
Keith Fitzgerald Thurman Jr.
Former WBA welterweight world champion Keith Thurman is another native of Clearwater city. Popularly known as “One Time” due to his habit of knocking out his opponents, Thurman is by far one of the most formidable welterweight fighters according to a 2019 ranking by The Ring magazine. Thurman is a resident of Clearwater-born and raised.
Terry Gene Bollea alias Hulk Hogan is a former professional pro wrestler who enjoyed a very successful career in the sport especially during his time at WWE. He is also an accomplished entrepreneur, actor, musician, and TV personality. Though born in Georgia, Bollea is a proud resident of Clearwater city. He also owns a home in the famous suburban city of Beverly Hills, CA. Despite his retirement from wrestling, Bollea is still considered by many people as one of the best wrestlers of all time.
Nielsen is an accomplished attorney who worked for homeland security and the White House as the chief of staff and deputy chief of staff in the Donald Trump administration respectively. She was later named as the secretary of homeland security, a position she resigned from less than two years after her appointment after a series of questionable border incidents and altercations with President Donald Trump. Despite being born in Colorado Springs, Nielsen grew up in Clearwater but later moved out to study in Washington, DC. Other popular residents and former residents of Clearwater city include famous disc golfer Ken “The Champ” Climo, musician Juliet Simms, internationally recognized boat builder Clark Mills and Sara Blakely who is credited with founding Spanx Inc.
Visiting Clearwater city has never been boring. Apart from its immense beauty and signature attractions, the city also offers a number of annual events that entertain and educate both the locals and visitors. With lots of sporting activities taking place within the cities premises every year, Clearwater has become a favorite getaway destination for sports enthusiasts in the recent past. Its location also offers convenient access to all the events taking place throughout the Tampa Bay Area. This article gives an insight into some of the annual events you can enjoy while staying in Clearwater, FL:
Spring is always a good time for sports lovers in the City as the Philadelphia Phillies take to the majestic Spectrum Field to prepare for the upcoming season. This preparation features a series of games every year and is a perfect way for the fans to enjoy watching their team play without really having to worry about the results. Spring Training also offers wannabe baseball fans a chance to learn everything there is about the game. The famous Toronto Blue Jays also prepare for their season within the City in the less popular Dunedin Stadium.
Firestone Grand Prix
This is another sporting event that draws people from all over Florida to the St. Petersburg-Clearwater city’s backyard. There is no better way to experience the thrill of watching cars race at insanely high speeds than from a front row in one of the most scenic waterfront cities on the East Coast.
Tampa Bay Blues Festival
This is one of the most prominent annual music events in the Tampa Bay Area and it takes place in Vinoy Park right next to Clearwater city. The festivals span a total of three days filled with non-stop music performances. The music is accompanied by tasty local and international cuisines, premium wine/beer, and art and craft displays. Tampa Bay Blues Festival makes a perfect way to spend a day with your family and friends.
Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival
Probably one of the longest running annual events in the city, Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival features over two weeks filled with fun beachfront activities and entertainment. The festival showcases sand based-art displayed in a giant walk-through structure next to the pier in Clearwater FL. Other activities include street performances, live entertainment, sand sculpting classes, fireworks, sand sculpting competitions, and other sand related demonstrations. There is also a kid’s area to keep the little ones smiling all day long.
Other popular events in the area include Clearwater Jazz Holiday, Mainsail Art Festival, Clearwater Offshore Nationals, Spring King of the Beach Fishing Tournament, Clearwater Chalk Art Festival and the Sanding Ovations Master’s Cup.
Clearwater is a fast-growing beach town with incredibly beautiful sandy beaches, warm subtropical weather and lots of natural and man-made attractions. As such, the city has established itself as one of the leading tourist destinations in Florida. With its high profile shopping destinations, exquisite marine life, unique natural beauty, and fascinating historical past, Clearwater FL has everything you would ever wish for in a holiday destination or a residential community for that matter. Its location in the vicinity of St. Petersburg and Tampa cities also make it a Gateway to many other attractions that these two coastal cities have to offer. Below is an overview of some of the activities and places you might want to consider exploring during your time in this picturesque Floridian city:
Check out the Clearwater Marine Aquarium
As mentioned earlier, Clearwater is home to exquisite marine life and this aquarium is just but a reminder of what the city has to offer. The facility serves as a rehabilitation center for aquatic life with some of its beneficiaries being turtles, dolphins, otters, stingrays, and sharks. In a bid to create an interactive environment, visitors are allowed to feed some of the animals including pelicans and stingrays. Visiting the Clearwater Marine Aquarium which also offers tours of their marine hospital can be a fun and educative experience for the whole family. Spend a day at the beach.
It goes without saying that most of the people who live or visit Clearwater are mainly drawn by its sunny weather and white sandy beaches. This means that a trip to one of the local beaches is a must for anyone visiting the city. Clearwater Beach is a perfect place to relax, play in the water, or just busk in the sun. Directly connected to the famous Pier 60, the beach also offers activities like swimming and sport fishing and is a perfect place to watch the Sunset. Being the main beach in the city, Clearwater Beach is a perfect destination for anyone looking to have some fun on the waterfront.
Visit Pier 60
Measuring a whopping 1,080 feet, this majestic fishing pier is one of the most visited Clearwater attractions. It offers features like viewing pavilions, telescopes and fishing areas. The facility is open for 24-hour per day and is perfect for people who love nighttime fishing or watching the sunrise/sunset. Other popular spots that you should visit include Cleveland Street District, Clearwater Beach Marina, Capitol Theater, Beach Walk, Ruth Eckerd Hall, Pinellas Trail, and Sand Key Park. You can also board one of the local cruise ships and explore the beauty of the Floridian waters or catch a game at the Spectrum Field.
Clearwater is a small city located on the waterfront end of Pinellas County. Sandwiched between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, it is the smallest of the three coastal cities that constitute the Tampa Bay Area with the other two being St. Petersburg and Tampa.
History has it that the area that is currently occupied by Clearwater city was originally the ancestral land of the Tocobaga groups of Native Americans. With the arrival of European explorers and settlers in the region towards the beginning of the 18th century, these groups of native inhabitants were exposed to “new diseases” which nearly wiped them out of existence. The survivors were driven away by repeated incursions from other stronger and more aggressive groups of indigenous people. For this reason, the areas that were formerly inhabited by the Tocobaga remained unsettled for the large part of the century.
Efforts by the government to establish growth and development in this part of the Floridian coast during the 19th century were however met with aggression by the Seminoles who had now gained a strong footing in the area. This led to the construction of an Army outpost, Fort Harrison, near modern-day Clearwater Harbor in an attempt by the U.S. Army to take control over the land and establish new non-native settlements. Despite being outnumbered, the Seminoles outmaneuvered the U.S. Army and kept frustrating them using their dirty fighting tricks. This led to the development and enactment of a federal act in 1842 which offered free land to any person willing to settle in the area and fight off Seminole incursions. It is at this point that the population of Clear Water Harbor (Today’s Clearwater) started to grow. The name of the city is said to have been coined in reference to the many freshwater springs which existed in the area at the time.
When the railway arrived in the late 1880s, the area started to grow into a town and was officially incorporated as such in 1891. The construction of Belleview Biltmore made Clearwater a designated holiday town and its reputation and population shot up. The town was elevated to a city in 1914 and designated as the new administrative center for Pinellas County which had been formed two years earlier.
Although the Second World War briefly turned Clearwater into an army base, its growth never wavered. Today, the city is one of the most sought after residential communities on the East Coast. It is also a top vacation destination for people from all over the world.
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