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  1. Black Friday deals at Legoland, SeaWorld, Disney and more

    Florida

    Black Friday isn't just for stores. Many theme parks and attractions in Florida are also offering up deals that could make a nice gift or family splurge.

    Legoland Florida in Winter Haven, Fla.  (AP Photo/John Raoux)
  2. Trump's visit to Florida met with protests over immigration decision for Haitians

    Nation

    South Florida community leaders Tuesday decried the Trump administration's decision to return nearly 60,000 Haitians to their quake-ravaged homeland, calling it "heartbreaking" and "shameful" while vowing that their fight has just begun.

    A demonstrator chants into a megaphone during a protest ahead of the arrival of President Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago in West Palm Beach on Tuesday. The Trump administration has moved to slash the number of refugees, accelerate deportations and terminate the provisional residency of more than a million people, among other measures. [Saul Martinez | Bloomberg]
  3. Before budget ax fell, Visit Florida executives ran up hefty travel bills

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott's tourism chiefs at Visit Florida spend a lot of public money taking trips to exotic places to promote Florida as a top worldwide destination.

    Florida Governor Rick Scott, left, and Ken Lawson, the CEO of Visit Florida, back in March. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  4. With Harry Potter's Christmas, Universal Orlando proves holidays are big business

    Florida

    ORLANDO — Christmas has finally come to Hogwarts at Universal Orlando in a new holiday attraction opening Saturday. In addition, Universal Studios has completely upsized its holiday parade with more Macy's balloons, stunning floats and snowy effects before Santa and his new sleigh enter for a finale.

    The new eight-minute Christmas at Hogwarts Castle show at Universal's Islands of Adventure will run nightly, starting Nov. 18. It uses projection imaging to create images such as students on brooms appearing  to enchant snowmen, or fill the sky with bright lights. [JIM DAMASKE | Times]
  5. First look: Harry Potter's Christmas finally arrives at Universal Orlando

    Florida

    Christmas has finally come to Hogwarts at Universal Orlando, with the promise of warm butterbeer, a Frog Choir singing carols and a magical light show projected onto Hogwarts Castle nightly followed by fireworks.

    The new eight-minute Christmas at Hogwarts Castle show at Universal's Islands of Adventure will run nightly, starting Nov. 18. It uses projection imaging to create images such as students on brooms appearing  to enchant snowmen, or fill the sky with bright lights. [JIM DAMASKE | Times]
  6. Victim's relative waves goodbye as Patrick Hannon executed

    Crime

    STARKE — Patrick Charles Hannon helped execute two Tampa men 26 years ago. He slashed one man's throat and shot another man six times in the chest in 1991.

    Patrick Charles Hannon is scheduled to be executed on Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017. [Florida Department of Corrections]
  7. White House implements new Cuba policy restricting travel and trade

    Nation

    WASHINGTON - The Trump administration Wednesday announced tight new restrictions on American travel and commercial exchanges with Cuba, implementing a policy announced by President Trump five months ago to reverse Obama administration normalization with the Communist-ruled island.

    President Donald Trump signs his new Cuba policy at the Manuel Artime Theateron June 16, 2017 in Miami, where he unveiled the changes he's making to the Obama-era policies toward Cuba. [Mike Stocker | South Florida Sun-Sentinel via TNS]
  8. Florida governor seeks money to speed up dike construction

    Politics

    CLEWISTON — Gov. Rick Scott announced Monday he will ask the Legislature for $50 million to speed up a federal project aimed at strengthening the dike that surrounds Lake Okeechobee and better protect nearby towns from a potentially deadly failure.

  9. Universal snaps up more land for potential theme park expansion

    Florida

    Universal Orlando has purchased another big chunk of land in Orlando, giving the theme park company more than 570 acres to work with for expansions, possibly including a new theme park.

    Sarah Karp, right, and her sister, Claire Karp-Hauser, ride the Flight of the Hippogriff during a technical rehearsal at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal's Islands of Adventure in Orlando on May 30, 2010.
The opening of the Harry Potter land brought an unprecedented 36 percent spike in attendance. 
 (Chip Litherland/The New York Times)
  10. Busch Gardens offers 2018 Fun Card early, with a free Adventure Island pass

    Florida

    Busch Gardens has put its 2018 Fun Card on sale early, meaning you can get two free months to visit the Tampa theme park for the rest of this year and a free Adventure Islands water park pass in 2018.

    The Cobra's Curse spinning coaster opened in 2016. Busch Gardens has put up its 2018 Fun Card on sale early, giving visitors two free months in 2017 and a free Adventure Island pass in 2018.
[JAMES BORCHUCK   |   Times (2016)]