Compiled by Michelle Colesanti,

Clearwater Marine Aquarium Hosts Winter’s Wonderland

This Christmas season Clearwater Marine Aquarium is hosting Winter’s Wonderland through Saturday December 23.

The aquarium will transform into a Winter Wonderland, featuring photo opportunities with ‘Winter Claus,’ special Santa dive presentations, and lights and decorations galore. 

Also, on four exclusive nights (Friday and Saturday, December 15-16 and December 22-23) it will be open until 9 p.m. for a special Sea of Lights experience. After 4 p.m., admission will be only $9.99 on these select nights. And for an additional $9.99 guests can board the Sea of Lights Boat Cruise to view the holiday lights around Clearwater Bay. We will even have complimentary holiday cookies and a holiday gift for children age 10 and under (while supplies last).

To learn more about this event, visit

Jamey Moody To Run For Hillsborough County Circuit Court Judge

Plant City native James ‘Jamey’ Moody III has filed to run for Circuit Judge, serving Hillsborough County. 

A local attorney and Florida native, he graduated from Plant City High School and is the son of longtime Federal Judge James S. Moody, Jr. He received his degrees from the University of Florida, and worked in the finance sector prior to receiving his Juris Doctor. He was selected to Super Lawyers Rising Stars (2011-2014), is a member of the Hillsborough County Bar Association, and the Plant City Bar Association, where he served as President from 2006-2008.  He is admitted to practice in the State Courts of Florida, and the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Moody is a volunteer attorney with Bay Area Legal Services, Rotary member, Federalist Society and Florida Justice Association member, committee member of the Planning Board of Plant City, and former board member of AMI Kids Tampa.  He is committed to serving the 13th Judicial Circuit honorably and will work tirelessly to uphold the Constitution of the United States, as well as the Florida Constitution. 

Moody will serve the residents of Hillsborough County with the highest integrity, discipline, and dedication.

THE POLAR EXPRESS™ 4-D Experience At The Florida Aquarium

The Florida Aquarium is getting in the holiday spirit and is excited to feature THE POLAR EXPRESS™ 4-D Experience at its new 4-D Theater, which recently opened.

The 48-seat 4-D Experience combines the visual drama of a 3-D film with a variety of sensory effects built into the seats and the theater environment. The 4-D Experience brings on-screen images to life with such added effects such as bubbles, wind and scents for a fully immersive cinematic experience.

The 4-D Theater is located in the Aquarium’s outdoor plaza by The Splash Pad and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. THE POLAR EXPRESS™ 4-D Experience® will through January 11, 2018. This 13-minute show is a family-friendly, modern classic and will be shown multiple times a day. The 4-D Theater experience is included in general admission to The Florida Aquarium.

Yellow Ribbon Mission Flight To Honor Veterans

The Yellow Ribbon mission taking veterans from Lakeland Linder Airport to Washington DC will take place on April 11, 2018.

The mission will be a one day event departing the Sun ‘n Fun Fly-in early in the morning and returning that day.

All veterans who have not participated in a previous Honor Flight or Flight to Honor are eligible.

Vietnam and later era veterans may also select to participate on the mission.

Option 1 – Veteran accompanied by a guardian-primarily for a veteran requiring physical assistance and/or a guardian specifically requesting to accompany a particular veteran. The guardian donates $450. No cost to the veteran.

Option 2 – Veteran unaccompanied by a guardian, but sponsored by a family member, employer, organization or friend. Sponsor contributes $250 for a seat on the mission for the veteran.  

Option 3 – Veteran unaccompanied by a guardian sponsors himself/herself and donates $250 for a seat on the mission.

For Options 2 and 3, the veteran must be physically capable of completing the mission without assistance such as a walker, wheelchair or other mobility device. This does not preclude another veteran accompanying a veteran needing assistance. 

Veterans wishing to participate should submit an application as soon as possible. Visit to download application.

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Michelle has been with the Osprey Observer for almost nine years, and her current position is Assignment Editor. She resides in Bloomingdale with her husband Phil, two sons, Philip and Matthew, and Tigger the cat.