The OFFICIAL FOH Tampa Get Together Thread


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Eight years ago today, on St. Patrick's Day in 2010, our great friend and my cigar mentor, Chuck (Tampa1257) passed. I usually make a post on this date in his honor. For this year, I thought it best t

As Rob's Journey is getting closer, I see that other areas that Rob will be visiting are making plans to entertain him while he is in town. The Tampa Bay area is no different, yet we have a lot of Cig

Thankyou all for a senstaional bloody time :-) Particular thanks to Chuck and Professor twain for putting on a remarkable day It was great to meet up with all of you and to spend a day in the life o

Time Table of Events:

Saturday July 19th between 10.00-10.30 we will meet at King Corona Cigars in Ybor City for cigars and Cuban Coffee.

For Directions:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=king+...G=Google+Search

King Corona Cigar

1523 E 7th Ave

Tampa, FL 33605

(813) 241-9109

We are planning to have lunch at the Columbia Restaurant at 12 noon.

For Directions:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=Colum...ity&btnG=Search

Columbia Restaurant: Ybor City-Tampa

2117 E 7th Ave

Tampa, FL 33605

(813) 248-4961

After lunch at approximately 1pm we will tour one of the Cigar Museums that will enlighten us as to the rich Cigar History of the Tampa bay area. Truth be known, without the Cigar Industry, Tampa would never have grown as much as it did.

After the Ybor Cigar Museum Tour, we are going to move across the Tampa Bay to Central Cigars in downtown St Petersburg where we should be there around 4pm.

http://www.centralcigars.com/merchant/about.ihtml

Central Cigars

273 Central Avenue

St. Petersburg, FL 33701

727-898-2442

There are many different restaurants in the walking district of downtown St Petersburg to choose from. Other nightly entertainment is available for those that want to participate. Central Cigars is open until 2am, so bring plenty of cigars, lots of laughter because we are going to have a fun time while Rob is here in the Tampa Bay area!!!

This is going to be a fluid day, so if your schedule is limited, please feel free to join us when you are available, the more the merrier!!!

Tampa

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» Time Table of Events

Fluid, that's good, yeah google tells me the ride is 2 hours and 12 minutes, but it will probably be longer say 2 and a half. We'll see if I make it up that early on my day off, I might be a bit late for breakfast... anyway, see you! :)

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Hey, to wet your whistle if you are attending, I have scored some 1944 Tampa-made Clear Havanas that we will be sampling at this event.

Tampa1257 and I have both sampled them and they are great! Probably older than any of the guys coming for the Get Together.

I'll be sure to post pictures and reviews after the Get Together.

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» Hey, to wet your whistle if you are attending, I have scored some 1944

» Tampa-made Clear Havanas that we will be sampling at this event.

Wow, that sounds great! I thought I might be able to get to Clearwater for this - alas, not this time around.

Have a great time all!

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Hey guys - I had a great time, nice to meet you all! Cool to hear all the stories about Bruce and Ken and Smitty. Sorry I had to leave early. I want to see pictures of those of you who stayed late, hoping they'll be pictures of debauchery unparallelled since the fall of Rome.

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Although I wasn't able to stay very long, it was great meeting everyone this morning at King Corona. Chuck and Bill get together frequently and it would be nice if more of us joined them, at least occasionally. Hope to run into y'all again, soon.

Bill, thanks for the unique cigar, it's resting comfortably in my humidor along with Rob's gift.

Chuck, great job putting everything together. Thanks for you efforts. I tried to find Exquisicat without the blue beads today, no luck, but I'll keep looking.

Mike

(the guy with the black Victory Vision motorcycle)

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I had a great time meeting everyone this morning in Ybor. Cigar fumes flailing around... drinks... akimbo... it was great. I wish I could have stayed longer and had lunch but my fiancee needed me and she's #1 in my life.

I got to meet Rob who is a super nice guy. He looked like he just walked out of a dance club.. and he said I had a cool shirt on!

I got to hang out with many other quality gentlemen... most of whom their names escape me. It's not personal. I'm HORRIBLE with names!! Just ask my fiancee... um... whats her name...

I was told several times, even once by the man who brought them to pick out one of those incredible looking cigars but I forgot!

I look forward to local cigar gatherings I've been graciously invited to and thank Tampa1257 for putting it all together.

- The golfer in the Magnum PI shirt

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Well I thought I would add a bit now about the Tampa Get Together. Don't have the time now to add a full report. Don't have my pictures up but I will be able to add those later today.

Rob rolled into town on Friday and a few of us got together with him in Ybor City at King Corona Cigars, sitting at an outdoor table. Ybor City on Friday night is crazy, lots of wildly dressed people, hot ladies, outrageous things going on. The Red Bull Girls were a major presence on the street, there was a big event in Tampa, they were prancing around giving out Red Bulls and shakin that thang... Rob and the rest of us went strong until about 1 AM, I had planned to be well rested for the Big Day Saturday, but that was not to be...

On Saturday we started meeting up about 10 AM at King Corona. I think we had a total of 17 guys there, smoking cigars, drinking coffee and tea and wine, and getting to know each other. A special treat was having Nick from Gotham Cigar Museum, who lives in the Tampa Bay area, bring a bunch of unusual old cigar memorabilia, old cutters and post cards and a vesta, great stuff. We also all got to examine the vintage box of Eden cigars, made in 1944, the cigars smoke great and everyone got one to try (some then, some later).

At about noon we made our way up the street ot the famous Columbia restaurant, I think we had 13 for lunch. Rob generously picked up the tab and besides great lunches he spread a few great bottles of wine around the table, there was plenty of merriment and great conversation.

After that we went over to the Ybor City State Museum. This museum explains the early history of Ybor City, which was built as a planned community for the cigar industy starting in 1886. The ranger gave us a bit of a talk about the history of the cigar industry, and the museum explained a lot more. Some of us watched a film that outlined the history of Ybor and the industry.

Then, back to King Corona, we went inside by this point because of the heat and humidity. Besides great cigars and conversation, we were watching the Red Bull Frugtag on TV, it was in Tampa and is a crazy event where people push home made objects intended to fly (most sunk like rocks) off of a 21 foot pier set up over Tampa Bay.

Around 4:30 we made our way to Central Cigars in St. Pete, it was great, nice comfortable place with leather furniture, more folks joined in, some bringing girlfriends, it was nonstop cigars with a bit of pizza thrown in.

I headed home about midnight, there was still plenty of excitement going on.

Sorry to make such a brief post but I wanted to get something up, have to head out for a while but I will add pics when I can. Lots of guys had their cameras going so it will be great to see all of the photos up.

Rob, thanks for making the effort to get down our way. This was a great event, we had guys come in from NY City, Virginia, North Carolina, and all over Florida. There was so much good humor and great cigars and amazing cigar information shared.

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OK here are some of the pics from the Tampa Get Together

This first group includes pictures from the Saturday morning get together at King Corona

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Pyro Dave

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Van55, Rob, and Tampa1257

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Rob was a little slow to start the day but his energy level picked up quickly.

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Ligero1 and Nick from Gotham Cigar Museum discussing cigar history and memorabilia.

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Box of 1944 Eden Clear Havanas, made in Tampa--smoked great.

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More to follow from other points along the day’s path of adventure!

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Here are some shots from the Columbia Restaurant.

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Patrick enjoying himself along with the whole crew.

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Ligero1 in his familar hat.

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Sir Diggamus, a college student happy to have a good meal!

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Rob, our gracious and generous host for lunch, he even forced us to consume mass quantities of fine wine.

Too bad I didn't get any pictures of the food, it was tremendous.

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OK, and here are some shots from our evening Get Together at Central Cigars in St. Petersburg, relaxing in leather chairs and enjoying fine adult beverages.

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Pyro Dave, Patrick, and Sir Diggamus enjoying seeing the Angels beating the Red Sox. Yankee and Rays victories followed leaving the Tampa Bay Rays in 1st place and a great day getting even better.

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Cohiba007 is mighty happy with his cigars!

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Not sure why Tampa1257 has such a big grin, I don't think this was even a Partagas.

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Rob and Van55 enjoying cigars and resolving all of the important matters in the cigar world.

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What would the evening be without lovely girlfriends making the place even more festive.

I know that there were LOTS more pictures shot, looking forward to seeing them posted.

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Here are some pictures of the Eden cigars. There are Clear Havanas (made of Cuban tobacco in the US), made in a Tampa factory (Calixto Lopez) in 1944. From what I have been able to discover on the web and from Nick of Gotham Cigar Museum (who sold me the cigars) Eden cigars were originally a Cuban brand and there was a Calixto Lopez factory built in Havana in 1850. In 1908 Calixto Lopez relocated from New York to the corner of Gomez Avenue and Abdela Street in West Tampa. The building was apparently torn down, although there are still many other old cigar factories standing in Tampa.

Here is a shot of the front of the box. It has a 50 cent tax stamp, which also shows a grade F, which Nick told me was the second highest premium grade. The picture on the back shows other information from the Seal of the City of Tampa, including that the price was mandated to sell from 15 to 20 cents a cigar, on the high end for that period. As you can see the cellophane is quite weathered but the cigars are in great shape.

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One curiosity about these cigars is that each of the cellophane packages is stamped with “RAHR MALTING COMPANY, Manitowoc, WIS”. These cigars must have been made up for some promotional event for this company, which is still in exists.

Opening the box, they smell great, no mustiness, and they have a sweet smell. These cigars burned well and had a tea like taste, I hope that others who got one at the Get Together will post their reviews.

What a joy to have a bit of cigar history in my possession and to find that 64 year old cigars can still smoke great.

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I had a great time and met some great people. We smoked many cigars, shared many stories and enjoyed each others company.

I thank Tampa1257 and Professor Twain for organizing this event. They did an outstanding job.

To all the members that were there, it was a pleasure to meet you and I hope we can do this again.

Big thanks to Rob for lunch and drinks and the great stories of Lisa:-D .

I wish StoreroomJeff and I could have extended the evening to St.Pete, but if we had, we might not have been able to drive home.:-D

What a great time it was.:ok:

Zig

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Thankyou all for a senstaional bloody time :-) Particular thanks to Chuck and Professor twain for putting on a remarkable day :ok:

It was great to meet up with all of you and to spend a day in the life of a cigar loving local. The hospitality and cigars and company were beyond reproach. No one should ever question the brotherhood of the leaf and the friends it brings together.

This is my last post for a week as I head to havana early in the am. Stay well my friends.

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It was definitely a great day yesterday. It was a pleasure to finally meet Rob and many of the other great people from the from the board. Here are a few shots I was able to capture from the day...

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Professor Twain was all smiles early Saturday morning

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Stahlberg, Van55, ziggy, and storeroomjeff chatting before a nice meal

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Ligero1 gave his thumbs up approval of the sangria

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The parks service has an officer on site who spoke to us about local heritage of the people and how the cigar industry transformed Tampa. The rolling table behind him is used regualrly by a 80+ year old master roller who still rolls beautiful sticks for sale locally.

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Nice vintage stuff. You could tell these were originals because most of the cigars did not escape the beetles. Many were riddles with holes.

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Back at King Corona storeroomjeff, ziggy, patrick, Van55, and Professor Twain were chatting and enjoying the RedBull flugtag on the tube

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after a LONG trip through Tampa traffic we finally made it over to Central cigars

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patrick was definitely enjoying himself

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pyro and ramblinman

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Pavelow and his wife

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Tampa was all smiles for the day too. Somehow some of group was enjoying a fine Rum NOT provided by the bar. Hmmmm...

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Rob and myself.

Thank you to Rob and and the whole crew for making Saturday a great day. Thanks as well to Tampa and Professor Twain for putting together the schedule of events and logistics of the day I wish every Saturday could be that good!

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Thanks for posting up the photos, Ben.

I think I speak for all who attended in pronouncing this event a huge success. Many thanks to Tampa1257 and ProfessorTwain for making the arrangments, and thanks to Rob for being the impetus for the gathering.

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Sorry folks I could not make it.

My wife and I had rented a car and driven up to Orlando Friday. We hit both of the parks in Orlando Friday, and were going to Tampa on Saturday. I got a call on Friday night from my mother about the baby not feeling good, and had to drive back down at 1:30 AM.......................................................note the baby started solid foods last week.:-(

I was looking forward to this get together these days I'm smoking maybe one cigar a week.....and maybe none on other weeks.

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