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St. Johns County Administration Media Notification

 

St. Johns County

Administration Media Notification                                     

September 19 – 23, 2013

Datil Pepper Cook-Off Set for Oct. 5

St. Augustine Record

September 22, 2013

The Datil Pepper Cook-Off Festival is Oct. 5 at the St. Johns County Agricultural Center. Top chefs representing St. Augustine’s finest restaurants will gather to compete in the 2013 Sixth Annual Datil Pepper Cook-Off Festival contest presented by the UF/IFAS St. Johns County Cooperative Extension Service. The event will be open to the public in conjunction with the St. Johns County Home and Garden Show.  Click here for full article.
Jaguars President Places High Emphasis on Integrating the Community

St. Augustine Record

September 22, 2013

That’s why Lamping, the first Jaguars president since 1996, has done something uniquely different in attempts to form a relationship with the community. On Sunday, Sept. 29, the Jaguars will host the first ever St. Johns County Day. The Jaguars face the Indianapolis Colts at home and local school marching bands will perform, while athletes, coaches and businesses will be honored. Click here for full article.
County Unemployment Rate Falls to 5.2 Percent

St. Augustine Record

September 20, 2013

St. Johns County followed the state trend and saw its unemployment rate head lower last month. As the state rate for Florida dropped to 7 percent in August, the county’s rate went to 5.2 percent, a decline of 0.4 percent from the previous month and 1.5 percent from August 2012. The total workforce and number of people employed in St. Johns County both increased from a year ago. The statistics were released Friday by U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.Click here for full article.
Pets of the Week: September 22, 2013

St. Augustine Record

September 22, 2013

Theon is a year-and- a-half-old male gray/white short hair cat, current on all of his vaccines, but still needs to be neutered. He is a very loving pet who plays well with others and will lick your hand to get more and more attention. He’s in kennel C16. Nala is a 6-year-old, female Lab mix, current on all her vaccines and already been spayed. She is a very sweet and loving pet who loves to go for walks, knows her basic commands and is house- trained so well that she will try her very best not to go in the kennel. She does need, however, to be the only pet in a house with no children under 10. She’s in kennel D25 at the SJC Pet Center. Click here for full article.
Land Donation May Speed Road Project

But County Road 305 Extension will Still Take Years to Complete

St. Augustine Record

September 22, 2013

The donation of a 71.8 acre strip of pristine forest worth $1 million on County Road 305 from Elkton to State Road 204 in April was a major step forward for Flagler Estates residents, who have dreamed of a shorter route to St. Augustine for years. However, that shortcut is still a long way down the road. David F. Williams, chairman of Flagler Estates Community Redevelopment Committee, told the County Commission last week that Flagler Estates residents require 30 to 45 minutes for the 32-mile, one-way trip to town. “(But) extending 305 (to S.R. 204) cuts 32 miles, or about 15 minutes, off that run,” Williams said. Click here for full article.
Garden Hotline: Datil is King of Festival

St. Augustine Record

September 21, 2013

Earlier this week the datil pepper was proclaimed by the county commission as the official plant of St. Johns County and that the first Saturday of October would be Datil Pepper Day. History is one reason why people are drawn to St. Augustine and the datil pepper is an integral part of that history. It is surprising that a spicy pepper which was essential to add flavoring to dishes, because other seasonings were scarce, has remained popular for hundreds of years. Especially at a time with so much worldly competition from exotic markets near and far. Click here for full article.
County School Budget Increases by $60 Million

St. Augustine Record

September 19, 2013

The 2013-14 St. Johns County School District’s overall budget is up nearly $60 million this year, a sign that the economy is doing at least slightly better, say officials. “Property values are up this year and millage is down. We’ve seen a very slight turnaround, which is helpful,” Superintendent Joe Joyner said. Last year, property values continued a downward trend. This year, they’re up 3.2 percent. Although nowhere near what they were before the financial crisis began in 2007, the upswing is welcome news for the school district. “It’s not going backwards, and that’s a huge relief,” Joyner said. “It’s starting to make a slow turnaround, so we’re not looking at cutting.” More money this year means, among other things, the reinstatement of the seven-period day in the middle school, the return of the teacher planning period within the school day and more curriculum offerings in the middle school. Click here for full article.
Gentlemen of the Road Stopover Heads to St. Augustine

Southern Living

September 17, 2013

Last weekend, Mumford & Son’s Gentlemen of the Road Stopover played in St. Augustine, Florida for two days of musical revelry. The 12-band lineup included headliner Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, Willy Mason, and a surprise performance by John Fogerty. The best part: This unique concert series selected only three dates in the U.S.—St. Augustine, Florida; Guthrie, Oklahoma; and Troy, Ohio—a serious win for the South. According to Jacksonville’s First Coast News, the festival was one of the biggest events St. Augustine has ever seen, with about 25,000 tickets sold and an estimated influx of 15,000 out-of-town fans who came to see the bands play on Francis Field. For a small town, this was no small feat. According to writer and photographer Renee Unsworth of St. Augustine Record,the event had a huge economic impact on downtown due to the venue’s proximity to restaurants, hotels, and merchant areas. Click here for full article.
New Craft Cocktail Bar (and soon Distillery) Debut in St. Augustine

Southern Living

September 12, 2013

We’re going to let you in on a little secret: St. Augustine is getting cool. Very cool. We’ve noticed this for a while, reporting about spots like The Floridian and macaroon shop Bon Ami. This weekend, Mumford & Sons takes the Gentlemen of the Road to St. Augustine on one of only three tour spots in North America. Now, one more reason. Today, Ice Plant Bar and Bottle Shop opens in the oldest city in America. Featuring 19 craft cocktails, it’s the first step in a total restoration of St. Augustine’s historic Ice Plant building. Vacant for years, local entrepreneur Philip McDaniel is renovating the building, which once manufactured ice to support Florida’s fishing industry. Click here for full article.
200 Gather in Hastings to Give Peace a Chance

St. Augustine Record

September 23, 2013

As a plane buzzed overhead, people who had gathered on Al Wilke Field on Main Street in Hastings in the shape of a peace sign held up their arms and made a different peace sign with their fingers. Saturday was the annual International Day of Peace, established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly, and more than 200 people celebrated at the first Peace in the Park in Hastings. Members of Pie in the Sky, the St. Augustine Initiative for Compassion and Unity and Peace St. Augustine coordinated the event, which featured music and a peace pole and the building and painting of a miniature “compassionate community” made of cardboard boxes. Around 1 p.m., people rested under the shade of trees as Lonesome Bert & the Skinny Lizards played country, including “Cotton Eyed Joe.” Click here for full article.
Davis Park gets System to Warn of Lightning Threats

Beaches/ Ponte Vedra Leader

September 19, 2013

With the serious threat of lightning to players, spectators and officials at St. Johns County parks, the county recently installed a Thor Guard Lightning Prediction System in Treaty Park, Davis Park, Mills Field Park and Veterans Park to provide advance warning of hazardous lightning conditions. County officials said the new system will allow park-goers enough time to seek shelter in a permanent building or a vehicle. The Thor Guard system continually monitors and evaluates the electrostatic atmosphere and predicts the probability of a lightning hazard in the immediate area of the facility. If a threat is identified, one loud horn blast will sound for 15 seconds. When heard, everyone at these parks should head for shelter immediately. A strobe light will remain active during a weather alert, and the system will determine when conditions are safe to return to previous activities. When all is clear, three short horn blasts will sound and the strobe lights will cease operation. During a weather warning, the St. Johns County Recreation and Parks Department reminds residents to always avoid athletic fields and bleachers, open areas, bodies of water, doors and windows, isolated trees and high elevators. For additional information, call 209-0655.
Nocatee Expands

Beaches/ Ponte Vedra Leader

September 19, 2013

this winter on several new amenities. The amenities are expected to be open to residents in late summer 2014. The new amenities will include an expansion of the community’s popular Splash Water Park to include a new family pool, a children’s spray ground and additional deck space, shade and covered seating areas. The developers will also build a new junior Olympic-size, eight-lane competition pool, including shaded bleachers, restrooms, a scoreboard and an event lawn. “The new pool area has been specifically designed to be a topnotch junior swim competition facility,” said Rick Ray, president of Nocatee’s master development group. There will also be four half court basketball courts, a kayak launch and a community garden. The junior Olympic pool, basketball courts and community garden will all be located across from the Splash Water Park parking lot in the former location of the Nocatee Farmer’s Market. The market was recently moved to the Nocatee Town Center to accommodate the growing number of attendees—now topping 5,000 people. The developer expects construction to last through winter and spring, with no interruption to current amenities, including the Splash Water Park.

Entertainment

Spectacular Disaster Flick Depicts Real-Life Events Surrounding BP Oil Spill

  Deepwater Horizon Film Review by Kam Williams Spectacular Disaster Flick Depicts Real-Life Events Surrounding BP Oil Spill On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, located 41 miles off the coast of Louisiana, exploded when high-pressure methane gas blew out the drill pipe. 11 members of the crew perished in the ensuing fiery inferno which engulfed the platform. The accident also caused the worst oil spill in U.S. … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Richards Rocks!

  Sandra L. Richards The “Rice & Rocks” Interview with Kam Williams Richards Rocks! The American-born daughter of Jamaican immigrant parents, Sandra L. Richards is the author of “Rice & Rocks.” She hopes that her debut picture book will serve as an educational resource for families seeking to teach their children the value of their heritage and the importance of cultural diversity. Sandra completed both her undergraduate and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

More Than a Score

  ACRONYM TO FOLLOW by Peter Brav   Finally Our Day has come There’s a Day for everything For doughnuts, siblings, eight track tapes Grilled cheese, daughters and sons to work Encouragement, Alzheimer’s Coffee, math, chewing gum Blasphemy, yo-yos And now finally One for us Truly a Day to celebrate National Don’t Shoot An Unarmed Brother Doctor King Not Seeing Progress George Orwell Laughing It Is So About the … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

New Home Sales Jump in April

  New Home Sales Jump in April By Burt Carey Sales of new homes hit their highest rate since 2008 in April, according to the Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau. April sales increased 16.6 percent over March figures, which correlates to a seasonally adjusted rate of 619,000 home sales projected for the year. The median price of those new homes was $321,000, the highest median price ever recorded. That’s up 9.7 percent … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Richards Rocks!

  Sandra L. Richards The “Rice & Rocks” Interview with Kam Williams Richards Rocks! The American-born daughter of Jamaican immigrant parents, Sandra L. Richards is the author of “Rice & Rocks.” She hopes that her debut picture book will serve as an educational resource for families seeking to teach their children the value of their heritage and the importance of cultural diversity. Sandra completed both her undergraduate and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Apex Gear ACCU•STRIKE XS Series Bow Sights

  Apex Gear ACCU•STRIKE XS Series Bow Sights By Brad Fenson As an avid bowhunter, I’m always looking for a sight to not only help me acquire a target accurately and quickly but provide adjustability while being lightweight. It might be a lot to ask for but with a wide array of hunting situations, you have to be selective in your equipment to ensure you are always successful in the long run. The Apex Gear ACCU•STRIKE™ XS was … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

There Are Superheroes Among Us

  There Are Superheroes Among Us by Amy Lignor   This story truly proves that a superhero does not require a cape, tights, or the ability to fly. In a world where all headlines seem to be centered around who shot who, who is being put upon, who’s “getting away with it” – all the way to who is getting divorced and who may or may not be kneeling at NFL games – negative stories seem to be the only ones covered anymore by the media. … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Scholastic Announces Sales of More Than 3.3 Million Copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

  Scholastic Announces Sales of More Than 3.3 Million Copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two New York, NY (August 10, 2016) — Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two script book, the eighth Harry Potter story by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne, published in the U.S. and Canada by Scholastic has sold more than 3.3 million copies in North America to date.Scholastic announced a first printing … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Vacation Time Has Turned “Spooky”

  Vacation Time Has Turned “Spooky” by Amy Lignor   Myths and legends, both spooky and surreal, are becoming the subject of many books and newspaper articles lately. And the location of many, oddly enough, happen to be in the Southwest. It used to be that a nice white sandy beach was the one place we yearned to go on vacation to get away from it all. Now, however, people are searching for places to travel where legends still exist, and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Doing Our Part

  Doing Our Part by Amy Lignor   There are books being published as of late – wonderful books telling the stories of amazing wildlife rescues, as well as neighborhoods and communities across the U.S. that have taken on projects to save the wildlife in their own surrounding areas.   We always talk about these “success stories,” yet never actually give information on exactly how these “problems” turned into “victories.” … [Read More its Good for You...]