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Tampa, FL (Population: 325,989)

Located on the western coast of Florida, Tampa boasts a warm and sunny climate. Although Tampa is known as the "Lightening Capital of the United States," the weather is fairly stable with predicable temperatures, and has been lucky to avoid a direct hurricane strike for over seventy years. The Port of Tampa is a bustling location due to the many cruise ships that dock there, as well as the handling of approximately half the seaborne commerce for the state.

The arts thrive in Tampa. This is due in part to venues such as the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, a complex of five theaters plus a conservatory, several boutiques, and a restaurant. The ideal venue for operas, dance performances, and plays, the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center also hosts one of the nation's leading Broadway series. In film, Tampa is home each year to two international film festivals as well as the Jewish Film Festival. Other popular entertainment attractions in Tampa include a variety of museums and the Florida Aquarium.

A well-rounded city, Tampa also claims the world-renowned Skatepark of Tampa, the site of two major annual skateboarding competitions. For the more classic sports fans, there is plenty to do and watch in Tampa. With major-league football, baseball, and hockey teams, there are plenty of professional sports teams to cheer on, as well as the local university football and basketball teams competing in the Big South Conference.