The Florida Times Union

Articles from February 24, 2011

A HISTORIC ROAD IN NOCATEE; A Strip of Nocatee Land: History Runs through It Runaway Slaves Were Transferred Down Twenty-Mile Road, Then to the Station
Byline: SHAKAYA ANDRES In the midst of Black History Month, a strip of land across Nocatee has a special significance. In the 17th and 18th centuries, in the vast area west of Ponte Vedra Beach, Twenty-Mile Road was used to transfer runaway slaves,...
Author Bringing History to Life for Younger Readers
Byline: Nancy Bethea Jane Wood has worn many hats - teacher, stay-at-home mom, newspaper reporter, and television producer. But since her first days teaching school, she has wanted to write books for kids. I listened to Wood talk about her books...
Automated Message System Helps Reduce Those Unwanted Signs; with New Method, Complaints Are Now Down by 97 Percent
Byline: SHAKAYA ANDRES With a new automated phone system that reminds people as often as 20 times a day about infractions, St. Johns County has dramatically reduced the number of unwanted and illegal signs planted along Florida A1A and other roads....
Band Teacher's Dismissal Roils Community; Students, Parents Call on School Board to Keep Suddenly Fired Teacher
Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI JESUP - Wayne County school system administrators say they want to take the award-winning Wayne County High School band in a new direction. Band members and their parents, however, say the program's already on the right...
Baseball: 5 to Watch
Byline: HAYS CARLYON TEAMS Baker County: The Wildcats have arguably the area's deepest pitching staff. New coach Fred Matricardi can throw out Josh Griffis, Dylan Jones or Chris Waddell and like his chances. Baker County also has a promising...
Best Bets
CELEBRATE ALL THINGS SCOTTISH AT GAMES AND FESTIVAL ON SATURDAY Northeast Florida Scottish Games and Festival is celebrating 16 years of bringing a "wee bit o' Scotland" to the Northeast Florida area. Each year residents areas gather and enjoy...
Bishop Kenny to Celebrate Its 60th Year with New Arts Center; It Will Be Named in Honor of Grad Who Started School Fund
Byline: BETH REESE CRAVEY Work is under way on a $1.5 million performing arts center at Bishop Kenny High School, a four-year Catholic college-prep school on the Southside. The Carla Harris Performing Arts Center is scheduled for completion in...
Clay High Coaches Are Pros in the Classroom as Well; History, Psychology and Sports Come Together for Three Top Teachers
Byline: BETH REESE CRAVEY In the classroom, they appear to be typical teachers. Pacing from one side to the other, they engage their students with the intrigue of world and U.S. history and the nuances of psychology. They don't necessarily...
Clay High's Soileau Wins State Wrestling Championship at 160
Byline: Brent Beaird Eight Clay County high school wrestlers - five from Clay High School and three from Ridgeview High School - placed in the top four in last weekend's FHSAA Wrestling Finals held in Lakeland. In Class 1A, Casey Soileau, 160...
Dad Calls Injured Marine Son and Others like Him 'Heroes'
Byline: Lamar Thames I sat at the table across from Bob Hayes in his nicely furnished condo in a gated OakLeaf community. It was near the end of our interview and I had one last question - one I considered important. "How are you coping?" I said,...
Deal Is Avoiding Squabble on Ports; South Carolina and Georgia Can Benefit from Plan, He Says
Byline: WALTER C. JONES ATLANTA - Georgia's new governor said Wednesday he's not interested in sparring with South Carolina's new governor over the deepening of the Savannah River. "I'm not going to get in any war of words with anybody," said...
Donovan Overdue for SEC Honor
Byline: GENE FRENETTE In sports, there are statistical anomalies, unexplainable oversights and downright injustices. I'm not sure how a bizarre inequity on the resume of Florida basketball coach Billy Donovan should be defined, or how it could...
Downtown Jamming on Saturday; Monster Trucks Run into Several Events
Byline: DAN SCANLAN Jacksonville police are warning of a monster jam downtown Saturday afternoon, and they aren't just talking about GraveDigger and Maximum Destruction. Along with about 72,000 fans expected for the annual Monster Jam truck show...
DOWNTOWN; Our Neighborhood
Preston Haskell aptly describes downtown Jacksonville as "the one neighborhood that is everybody's neighborhood." "No one neighborhood can substitute for what a downtown can be for a city," the chairman of the Jacksonville Civic Council's Northbank...
Eclectic World Drawing to Close; since Putting Up His Sign to Close, Owner of Gallery Now Busier
Byline: SANDY STRICKLAND One of Bill Spalten's favorite pieces is an exquisitely carved door from a hut in Nigeria that was brought to Savannah on a slave ship 200 years ago. Another is a cast bronze cocktail table of a nude woman holding an...
Economy Better, Not 'Normalized'; Mideast May Impede State's Growth
Byline: WALTER C. JONES ATLANTA - The state's economy will continue its gradual recovery from the worst recession in 50 years if unrest in the Middle East doesn't disrupt oil markets, according to the quarterly forecast of Georgia State University...
Fairness of Street Vendor Debated; Some Feel It Will Give Brick-and-Mortar Shops Additional Competition
Byline: TIFFANY PAKKALA ST. MARYS - Downtown business owners have a beef against a proposal to open a hot dog vending cart near the historic district's waterfront. Allowing a street vendor to set up shop would be unfair to "businesses already...
Farah's Up-Town a Welcome Addition to Downtown Eating
Byline: ERICA BURKS First we saw the signs: "Farah's Up-Town - Coming Soon." After a couple of weeks, workmen came early and left late, an unusual assortment of furnishings was delivered, the windows were polished up and, finally, the doors opened....
For This Doctor, She Became Her Own Weight-Loss Patient
Byline: Rhonda Reese When Linda Manning-Dimmitt's 11-year-old son started making comments about his mother's increasing size, she knew it was time to do something. Then when one of the Mandarin physician's kind, elderly patients suggested that she...
Georgia Briefs
OAK GROVE CEMETERY LOOKS TO START TRUST ST. MARYS - Oak Grove Cemetery may be able to pay for its own upkeep even after all its plots are sold, rather than relying on funds from St. Marys. Kay Westberry, who calls herself the cemetery's unofficial...
Global Warming Called 'Scary Stuff'; Two Experts Speak at UNF to Reaffirm Some Dire Predictions
Byline: JEREMY COX Global warming threatens polar bears, seaside homes, Louisville Sluggers, glaciers - and your health. Florida is already experiencing some health consequences from the planet's rising temperatures and should redouble its efforts...
Historic Cemetery Is Rededicated in Honor of Those Buried There
Byline: DEBRA W. BUEHN Under a protective canopy of sprawling live oaks, scores of area residents gathered recently to rededicate Magnolia Springs Cemetery - the final resting place of early Clay County settlers as well as several Civil War soldiers...
Hogan Apologizes for Comment on Abortion; He Likes Humor in Talks, but Shouldn't Have Brought It Up, He Said
Byline: JIM SCHOETTLER Jacksonville mayoral candidate Mike Hogan said Wednesday it was inappropriate for him to joke that bombing an abortion clinic "may cross my mind," which he uttered during a church-based forum Monday. But Hogan said he was...
Hogan's 'Joke' a Blunder; Criticism Unfair to Holt
Byline: Ron Littlepage There's little question that mayoral candidate Mike Hogan blew it with his "joke" about abortion clinic bombings. Before cries of political correctness ring out, what Hogan said was dumb, pure and simple. And his defense...
Honoring Their Lives, Mourning Their Deaths; Hundreds Gather Wednesday Night at Vigil for Two Teenagers Killed in Boating Accident
Byline: TIMOTHY J. GIBBONS MIDDLEBURG - The two high school students who died in a boating accident Monday need to have their lives celebrated even as their deaths are mourned, said Jason Green, stepfather of Travis Hanner. And the community...
If Fishing Matters to You, Let Legislators Know
Byline: Capt. Jim Johnson Anglers, show your support! There are two upcoming opportunities to show your support for saltwater recreational fishing. On Friday, there is going to be a Fishing Matters to Me Rally in front of the National Marine...
Is Juice Better Than Plain Old OJ? Tasters Were Divided on Merits of Welch's Healthy Start Juice
Byline: ANN J. KELLEY Would you trade your morning glass of orange juice for something new? Welch's boasts its Healthy Start 100% White Grape Orange Mango Juice contains twice the amount of antioxidant vitamin C found in orange juice as well as...
Jacksonville at Florida Gulf Coast
When: 7:30 p.m. today. Where: Alico Arena, Fort Myers. Radio: WFXJ (1010 AM). PROBABLE STARTERS DOLPHINS (19-8, 13-5 A-SUN) 42 Glenn Powell, F, 6-5 Avg.: 7.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg. 10 Ayron Hardy, F, 6-5 Avg.: 12.7 ppg, 5.9 rpg. 21...
Largemouth Bass, Catfish Are Biting as Cold Water Warms Up
Byline: Jim Sutton The largemouth bass bite is full-on down in Lake George and moving northward after several days of warming weather - and water. Schooling bass are hitting Rat-L-Traps and other lipless plugs early and late in Lake Santa Fe. ...
Loss Could Derail Potter's House Goal; Food Poisoning Might Keep Girls Basketball Team from National Title
Byline: HAYS CARLYON Could a case of food poisoning keep the Potter's House Christian Academy's girls basketball team from being recognized as the best in the nation? Perhaps. The Lions are 29-1, but that loss could keep the squad from its...
Man Arrested in January Shooting
A 20-year-old Westside man was arrested late Monday in the January shooting of an acquaintance. Gillis Anthony Tillis Jr. of the 7800 block of Gordean Road is charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and possession of marijuana. His...
MAYOR'S RACE: AUDREY MORAN; She Has the Big Heart of a 'Servant Leader' Described as One Who Solves Issues Instead of Complaining
Byline: PAUL PINKHAM It was time to pray, but the preacher was a no-show. After an awkward pause in Jacksonville's annual homeless memorial last December, Audrey Moran quietly stepped to the podium and led the tiny gathering in prayer. There...
More Craft Breweries Have Can-Do Spirit
Byline: ROGER BULL AND ED STANSEL Beer in a can: It's so Homer Simpson, right? Think again. More craft brewers are canning their products, and the stigma associated with canned beer is fading as consumers discover that some really delicious brews...
Morning Briefs
RAILAMERICA'S REVENUE ROSE IN FOURTH QUARTER RailAmerica Inc. reported Wednesday fourth-quarter earnings from continuing operations of $17.9 million, or 33 cents per diluted share. The Jacksonville-based operator of short-line railroads had a loss...
Native Flowers Bring Touch of Blue
Byline: Beverly Fleming This time of year, we yearn for color. Wild plum has burst into bloom with tiny white flowers. Soon there will be bursts of yellow Carolina jessamine twining around trees and bushes. And yellow, orange, red and purple blossoms...
North Florida at Stetson
When: 7:15 p.m. today. Where: Edmunds Center, DeLand. Radio: WJSJ (105.3 FM). PROBABLE STARTERS OSPREYS (11-18, 8-10 A-SUN) 21 Andy Diaz, F, 6-7 Avg.: 10.6 ppg, 5.8 rpg. 24 David Jeune, F, 6-6 Avg.: 3.2 ppg, 4.1 rpg. 15 Jerron...
No Space Is No Problem to Grow Fruits and Vegetables
Byline: Carol Ann Atwood Not enough space for a vegetable or fruit garden? Try growing veggies, fruits and flowers in a container. Look at all the goodies, rewards and edible treasures that you'll be able to collect for yourself and your family....
Olympians Stop by TNT Gymnastics
Byline: Mark Boleky I bet you didn't know what a big year this was for gymnastics in Jacksonville. And, in particular, one Southside gymnastics club. Our fair town is the 2011 host for the AT&T American Cup March 5 at Veterans Memorial Arena....
One Man Down, They Played Their Hearts out; the Kirby-Smith Middle School Soccer Team Honors a Fallen Mate
Byline: BRIDGET MURPHY In the end, it wasn't the final score that mattered to Josh Walter's teammates. What mattered to members of Kirby-Smith Middle School's soccer team was that they stepped on the field again. And a man down, they played...
Ozzy Proves He's Still Rock Royalty; Osbourne Was Crazy and Energetic, but Slash Failed to Make the Cut
Byline: HEATHER LOVEJOY Maybe having such low expectations was just unfair. Then again, maybe that's what made Ozzy Osbourne's concert surprisingly fun, adding an "Oh, hey, this doesn't stink after all" element. He performed Tuesday night at the...
Parsons' Status Is Uncertain; Forward's Injured Thigh Is Better, but Gators Coach Cautious
Byline: MICHAEL DIROCCO Florida coach Billy Donovan said Chandler Parsons' bruised thigh feels the best it has since he injured it against Tennessee on Feb. 12. But that doesn't mean Florida's 6-foot-9 senior forward will be able to play in the...
Q&A Avi Richman; Making a Difference through Peace Corps
Byline: SANDY STRICKLAND At 26, Avi Richman has already amassed a stellar record. He graduated from Mandarin High School as valedictorian in 2002. At the University of Florida, he studied political science and psychology. After earning his degree,...
Q&a with Debora Mccarty; Mom Finds PTO So Much More Than Fundraising
Debora McCarty stacks up plenty of volunteer opportunities on her plate, and that's the way she likes it. McCarty jumped right into the volunteer bandwagon at Hickory Creek Elementary School and Switzerland Point Middle School after moving to Florida...
San Marco Work Contract Awarded
Petticoat-Schmitt Civil Contractors Inc. has been awarded the city of Jacksonville contract to complete the San Marco Streetscape improvements. The $6.1 million construction project will have nine phases and take place over a two-year period, according...
SCOREBOARD; High Schools
TENNIS BOYS MENENDEZ 7, ENGLEWOOD 0 Singles: 1. Kayworth (M) d. Opaci 8-1; 2. Caplinger (M) d. Oyler 8-2; 3. Vansteger (M) d. Faraj 8-4; 4. Walker (M) d. Prinzi 8-3; 5. Olsson (M) d. Fregat 8-0. Doubles: 1. Kayworth & Caplinger (M)...
Shooting Trial Begins with Conflicting Stories
Byline: DAVID HUNT Prosecutors say a Tennessee man was only trying to get into an Arlington park when a Jacksonville man pulled a semi-automatic pistol and killed him with a single gunshot to the chest at point-blank range. But as trial opened...
Spicer Returns to Team to Retire; the Veteran Thanks Weavers, del Rio and Smith for Opportunity
Byline: TANIA GANGULI A few months ago, former Jaguars defensive end Paul Spicer put in a call to the office of Paul Vance, the Jaguars' senior vice president of football operations and general counsel, saying he wanted to retire a Jaguar. On...
St. Marys Real Estate Agents Seeking Relief; at Issue Are Water and Sewer Connection Fees amid the Housing Funk
Byline: TIFFANY PAKKALA ST. MARYS - The foreclosure crisis has reached St. Marys, and now real estate agents are asking for some relief on water and sewer hookup fees. Georgia law requires those utilities to be active at various times, including...
Tag, Marcedes Is It; Tight End Lewis Given Franchise Label
Byline: TANIA GANGULI The Jaguars will most likely keep their Pro Bowl tight end for at least another year. Jacksonville placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on Marcedes Lewis on Wednesday, unable to reach a long-term deal. The Jaguars will continue...
'Theology on Tap' Brings Church to a Bar; It's Not a Service and It's Not about Drinking; It's Religious Education in a Relaxed Setting
Byline: JEFF BRUMLEY To his delight, the Rev. Tom Willis' audience of young adults remained fully engaged during his two-hour PowerPoint presentation about upcoming changes to the Roman Catholic missal. In part, Willis' engaging speaking style...
Thrasher's Action on Teacher Bill Criticized; He Cut off Debate, Said Arguments Have Already Been Heard
Byline: BRANDON LARRABEE TALLAHASSEE - The debate over the successors to last year's polarizing teacher-pay bill once again turned heated Wednesday, as opponents fumed about a decision by Sen. John Thrasher to cut off debate in the measure's final...
Trailer in Ruins after Domestic Eruption; Man Jailed; Wife Told Police He Chased Her with a Sword; Bail $25,000
Byline: DAN SCANLAN When police arrived at a home in the 2800 block of Ruth Drive on Jan. 27, it looked as if someone had gone medieval on the trailer - an arrow shot into the ceiling, a sword stuck in a wall nearby, and other swords and knives...
T-U 2
YOUNG STARS OFTEN SWING THROUGH JACKSONVILLE Jacksonville baseball fans have witnessed some of Major League Baseball's brightest young stars. Assuming Freddie Freeman makes the starting lineup at first base for the Atlanta Braves this spring, the...
T-YOU; RANTS & RAVES Moving It Forward to Pay It Forward
There was one day I went to the local Family Dollar Store and while waiting in line, I struck up a conversation with a lady in front of me. I laid my items on the counter with the money. She moved them over with her "stuff" and the cashier started...
UNF Students Take a Walk through Poverty Simulation; Co-Hosted by United Way, the Project Showed How Struggles Can Become Overwhelming
Byline: ERIK MOULE Low-income families across Jacksonville encounter struggles on a daily basis, with many facing obstacles that are seemingly insurmountable. Basic standards - being able to provide shelter, child care and basic necessities for...
Visitors Mixed on Gambling
Byline: TERRY DICKSON JEKYLL ISLAND - All state Rep. Ron Stephens wants is to raise more money for the HOPE scholarship program. The Republican proposed legislation to allow video lottery terminals at selected Georgia parks, including Jekyll...