HANDS ACROSS THE SAND EVENT
Feb. 13, 2010
HELP STOP OFF-SHORE DRILLING & SUPPORT CLEAN ENERGY
Helicopter of Dorian Photographers, taking aerial photos
Caricature, named PETROLEO, created by
Spanish illustrator Eduardo Rodriguez Marin
Pinellas County Commissioner Neil Brickfield, former St. Pete City Council Kathleen Ford,
Pinellas County Commissioner Calvin Harris
Photos and video from the official photographers of "Hands Across the Sand"
Please use the following link to view the helicopter links from the “Hands Across the Sand” event along the Pinellas Beaches from Clearwater Beach to Ft. Desoto’s North Beach. The first link is the aerial video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7lMCrIrhjU
A second link will take you to the “Hands across the Sand” helicopter aerial still images beginning at Clearwater Beach and ending at Gulfport.
Above is a photo of Marea and me in the helicopter at work.
Courtesy, Jim & Marea
Dorian Aerial & Architectural Photographics, Inc.
”Creating Images that get You Noticed!”
3249 San Mateo Street
Clearwater, Florida 33759
MORE NEWS AND PHOTOS
Letter from Cathy Harrelson
Conservation Co-Chair/Coastal Task Force Chair
HANDS ACROSS THE SAND:
Greetings from St. Pete Beach
FEBRUARY 13, 2010
Our experience with the three Hands locations on St. Pete Beach, from the public beach to the Sirata Beach Resort and past the Tradewinds Resort was thrilling. Hundreds of participants at both the Sirata & Tradewinds were able to link. We reached out to the public beach to the south, and could have stretched down to the public beach site with a few bullhorns to stretch the crowd apart. It was the most amazing, incredible thing I’ve ever seen. The energy was electric, and when our own long-time volunteer Marea Dorian of Dorian Photographics flew past in her red helicopter to film us, the crowd went wild! Above the red helicopter was an airplane pulling the sign of our alliance: Love Tourists Not Drilling - prompting more cheers from the crowd and providing a special photo op among many photo ops today.
We started the day at noon with a press conference at the Sirata Beach Resort. This event began with a blessing and drumming from a native American education group. We followed that with political, business & environmental speakers - then ramped the crowd up to head out to the beach.
Our first speaker was Greg Nicklaus, owner of the Sirata Beach Resort, bringing home the point that his family-owned business depended on clean beaches to keep tourists coming back year after year. Greg was followed by U.S., state & local government elected officials. The speakers included U.S. Congressman C.W. Bill Young (R), Shahra Anderson, representative from U.S. Senator Bill Nelson (D), State Senator Dennis Jones (R), State Senator Charlie Justice (D), State Representative Jim Frishe (R), State Rep Rick Kriseman (D), Pinellas County Commissioner Ken Welch (D) & St. Petersburg City Councilmember, Karl Nurse (D).
Phil Compton, Regional Representative of the Sierra Club showed a map of the oil spill in the Timor Sea superimposed upon the eastern Gulf of Mexico - demonstrating what can happen to pristine beaches and vital water resources if oil drilling is allowed in the eastern Gulf. Patricia Plantamura , Seminole City Council women & Scott Maddux, candidate for Florida Agriculture & Consumer Services Secretary, each spoke about their opposition to drilling and commitment to clean energy development. Finally, Robin Grabowski, CEO of the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce reiterated the Chamber’s longstanding opposition to drilling & support of coastal protection.
The amazing synergy of these speakers of disparate political and community backgrounds was something that could not have been scripted. In his or her own way, each and every one of the speakers stood firm against offshore drilling and each and every one expressed the urgent need for Florida to pursue clean, renewable energy now.
As we wrapped up our press conference, the cold, gloomy day was flooded with Florida sunshine. Many of the elected officials had promised to join Hands at their constituent beaches and headed off, while others stayed with us to form a line that eventually stretched to nearly 1000 people along St. Pete Beach. I’m sure many of you had a similar experience – a small group or groups clustered around talking, then that sudden rush to the beach. We scrambled to ask people to sign in. to give us their names, phone numbers, email addresses, and they did it. They clamored for pins, hats, stickers, bumper stickers – anything we had to give to demonstrate their participation and commitment. It was the most moving community experience of my life.
The amazing volunteer spirit and team collaboration of this effort at St Pete Beach, and all the beaches of Pinellas and in Florida, is the kind of movement we all wish for. I can’t wait for the next move … FLORIDA ROCKS!!!
ANTI-DRILLING PROTEST AT THE VINOY March 31, 2010. Please find a photo gallery of images from the protest. Courtesy of Jim & Marea Dorian.