Phillipe River Citrus

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Count Odet Phillipe was the first person to plant grapefruit and oranges on the west coast of Florida. . (Interestingly, at the time grapefruit were considered “a rich man’s dish.”) He also planted limes, avocados, pears and bananas. Phillipe “discovered” the plants when his ship stopped in the Caribbean on its way from France to Florida around 1820.

Phillipe first tried to land on the East Coast of Florida, but the Native American population was less than welcoming. He had better luck landing near Tampa Bay, and he found fertile soil for his enterprise near the present-day town of Safety Harbor.

Phillipe was known for some creative storytelling about his past. His claims included having been a childhood friend of Napoleon and a nephew of King Louis XVI. Such discrepancies have resulted in his being called “one of the most interesting characters in the Florida Citrus Hall of Fame.”

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Erik Schlake

Erik Schlake is a mural artist from Cape Coral FL. Erik has studied art at the university level, including Washington University, as well as lessons from various international artists. For the past few years, Erik, along with his daughter Allison, have been participating in chalk festivals since 2016. Erik and Allie, together and individually, create with an attitude of "go big or go home". "We don't mind pushing the limits and failing or falling on our face. It's part of the creative process, and we love putting it out for the world to see. We hope that, in some way, inspires others to get out and try because the feeling of failure goes away but the feeling of 'I wish I at least tried' lasts much longer".

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Nanette Crist

Nanette Crist is a retired lawyer who began blogging when she moved to Florida. It was an online diary of sorts, a way to keep track of her new life. It was also a good way to share her discoveries with friends and family outside the area. Over time, Nanette realized her writing makes her experience the world differently. She keeps an eye out for interesting things to write about and then delves more deeply into them as she crafts her words. It's all about telling the story. Nanette's blog can be found at