Schools and county offices in the Tampa Bay area have announced early closing and some closures ahead of Hurricane Ian.

Pinellas County:

According to News Channel 8, some Pinellas County schools will have early dismissal on Monday so the county can prepare to open them to the public as special needs shelters ahead of Tropical Storm Ian.

The following Pinellas County schools will release students at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 26:

  • Palm Harbor University High School
  • Dunedin Highland Middle School
  • John Hopkins Middle School

All other Pinellas County Schools and offices will be open for regular hours on Monday, September 26. ALL Pinellas County schools will be closed and offices will be CLOSED Tuesday, Sept. 27 and Wednesday, Sept. 28, and are tentatively scheduled to reopen Thursday, Sept. 29.

The special needs shelters will open Monday, Sept. 26 at 6 p.m. Anyone who needs transportation to those shelters is asked to contact the county information center at 727-464-4333.

Pasco County:

Pasco County Schools and offices will remain open on Monday, September 26. Schools and offices will be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday. All after school programs, all athletic events and practices, and all extracurricular events have been canceled.

As of now, no Pasco County shelters have opened ahead of Tropical Storm Ian. Keep this post saved in your favorites as we will continue to update it as shelters begin to open.

Hillsborough County:

Hillsborough County schools will be closed from Monday, September 26, through Thursday, September 29. All extracurricular activities have been canceled.

Hillsborough County officials are determining if schools will be needed for shelters based on the latest storm track.

The Tampa Lightning have postponed their preseason games on Wednesday, September 28 against Carolina and Thursday, September 29 against Nashville at Amalie Arena.

Sarasota County:

Schools in Sarasota County will close Tuesday, Sept. 27, “out of an abundance of caution,” according to a release from school officials.

We will update this post as more information continues to unfold.

Earlier this week, Denis Phillips compiled a list of common sense and some creative life hacks that could be helpful to make Ian’s visit less stressful and damaging.

10 Florida Hurricane Life Hacks from Denis Phillips

  • Get the laundry done!

    Denis points out that without air conditioning, anything dirty will start to stink your place up! And when the AC goes out, you’ll want clean sheets because you’ll be sweating a lot!

    Whirlpool To Close Plants, Cut 3000 Jobs

    Tim Boyle/Getty Images

  • Dig that OLD phone out.

    When you know the storm’s coming charge up those laptops, and OLD phones… not just the one you use now. Old phones call still call 911!

    Apple Unveils iPhone 6

    Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

  • Fill up trash cans with water.

    Use that water to flush toilets.

    Dustmen's Strike

    R. Viner/Daily Express/Getty Images

  • Cook meat and perishable foods.

    Freeze cooked food too. Denis says he loves a hardboiled egg as a snack on that first day without power.

    Ban On U.S. Beef Lifted In Japan

    Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images

  • Backpack it!

    Stuff all your important stuff in a backpack so it’s easy to grab in case you need to leave quickly.

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    Sean Gallup/Getty Images

  • Hit the ATM!

    If power goes out for a while or systems go down, it’ll be good to have some cash on hand.

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    Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

  • Lower your AC in advance!

    This is certainly one I wouldn’t have thought of doing… but it makes sense. Higher temps in the room will lower the temp in your fridge to preserve those foods longer.

    Google To Buy Smart Thermostat Maker Nest For 3.2 Billion

    George Frey/Getty Images

  • Scrub!

    Hit the shower just before the storm’s about to hit.

    Water - Photo Illustrations

    Sean Gallup/Getty Images

  • Unplug!

    Unplug your electronics because there will likely be power surges.



  • Freeze a cup of water and put a coin on top.

    If the coin stayed on top after the power went out, your food stayed frozen!

    Quarter in my Freezer

  • Here's a bonus tip from our listener Rebecca...

    I know if you have water to flush your toilet with, you’re good, however, not every toilet will flush, even with water, and you might need an additional toilet, especially if you have others staying with you, so the best home made port-o-potty I’ve ever seen is really easy. Take a bucket, like a Home Depot or Lowes type bucket🪣, fill it with a garbage bag and about 1/4 to 1/2 full with kitty litter. Then take a pool koozy and slice it down one side, half way through. Place the koozy around the top of the bucket and cut it to fit the top of the bucket just right. Put a roll of toilet paper on the handle of the bucket and wha-lah, you’ve got a relatively comfortable, durable port-o-potty. When it gets full, pull out the garbage bag and replace it with another and fill it about 1/4 to 1/2 with litter and you’re all set.


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