Top 5 Stories In 2015 From Jeff Ashton’s “curiosities” to Orlando’s favorite hipster hangouts, here are our top five most read stories of 2015.
By Jacob Engels
2015 was a blockbuster year for East Orlando Post. Before we cross over into 2016, we wanted to recap our biggest stories of this past year. READY. SET. GO.
East Orlando Post was the first publication to report on the Orange/Osceola State Attorney Jeff Ashton as being a paid member of the cheating website Ashley Madison, where men went to engage in extramarital affairs. This story went worldwide, appearing in the USA Today, The Daily Mail, People Magazine, CNN, Associated Press and over 1,000 other print and online publications.
All of Orlando’s “traditional media” were scooped yet again by our “blog”. After the story went far and wide, much of my time was spent strong-arming media outlets into giving credit where credit was due and fielding interviews around the world. Paging all the assholes who try to marginalize East Orlando Post as not real and myself as “just a blogger”, how did you miss this with those fancy Ivy League writing degrees and years on the beat?
Cowfish Orlando was supposed to be Universal City Walk’s big hit of 2015, but during an impromptu visit before the screening of the Games of Thrones special, we had such a nightmarish experience with the staff and management that we could not even get seated in a near empty establishment.
Following the publication of our article, readers and visitors locally and around the world shared their own horror stories and dismay. We will see if they have stepped up their game in 2016.
This article featured over 15 “Hipster Hotspots” in the Central Florida and Orlando area. In terms of consistent and ongoing traffic throughout the year, this write-up by former top Orlando Weekly intern Kaleb Quast was #1. If you want to know the best indie places to eat, drink, hangout in Orlando… keep this list handy.
There is not a single place on it that is not worthy of your patronage. We will refresh this in 2016, as we have had many new additions like Dixie Dharma’s “Market on South.”
The Winter Park Mayoral race was easily one of this 2015’s hottest political campaigns. Judge Cynthia Mackinnon ran one of the oddest, tone def, and poorly managed campaigns Central Florida has ever seen. Her odd performance included multiple FEC violations, false allegations about her opponent, hiring out of town consultants, and the infamous “Negrotown” comment that really sank her.
Democrats lost big with Mackinnon and Republican Steve Leary emerged as the victor after running a cool, calm, and collected campaign.
The first term Orlando City Commissioner was never supposed to win and after her upset victory, ever establishment insider was on a mission to tear her down… including the media. Hill, who was a multiple time felon before turning her life around, spent most of her first term engaging the community and allocating the majority of her budget towards community events and non-profit donations.
An elected official who favored proximity to the people rather than City Hall upset the status quo. Our report on her actual office expenses and why she deserved an increased budget exposed the inequity from the Orlando Sentinel, WFTV, and others who supported her opponent and Hill’s corrupt predecessor to no end.
There you have it! Onward to 2016!
Jacob Engels, is the Founder of East Orlando Post & Seminole County Post. He is a seasoned political operative who has led numerous statewide political groups and has worked on several high-profile local, statewide, and national races. Jacob has been interviewed on national television & radio programs, with his work having been featured in the Orlando Sentinel, New York Times, Washington Post, Miami Herald and other publications nationwide. He can be reached at email@example.com