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Today on Context Florida: Red Hills Horse Trials, Pensacola, high school and death penalty

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Today on Context Florida:

Tallahassee’s Red Hills Horse Trials isn’t the first thing that comes to mind for working-class people looking to spend a spring afternoon outdoors with the kids, says Florence Snyder. It’s easy to feel intimidated by a United States Equestrian Association event that attracts an international crowd of diehard members of the horsey set. But the “suggested donation” of $15 is a whole lot less than a day at Disney, and the look on children’s faces as they sit on a family picnic blanket watching Olympic-level stadium jumping, cross-country and dressage is priceless.

Maybe this is how they do it in Pensacola, says Shannon Nickinson. Most folks prefer their jobs announcements on the splashy side: Golden shovels, red ribbons, oversized scissors, the whole shebang. And there is something to be said for that. But some of Pensacola’s recent economic development news has been a tad more on the modest side.

Catherine Durkin Robinson discusses choosing the right high school as her twins graduate from 8th grade. She wanted her kids to be safe, and wondered about tossing them into a crowd of 2,500 students, some of whom use weapons and curse words to express themselves, without doing some research. The more she studies something, the less she fears it.

For 13 years, Florida’s death penalty process has been on thin ice at the U.S. Supreme Court, writes Martin Dyckman. The Legislature has pretended not to notice even though the state Supreme Court sent an early warning. Now, the ice is cracking, he adds.

Visit Context Florida to dig in.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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