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Today's News

  • A boost to boomer education

    Baby boomers are heading back to the classrooms in increasing numbers – at least they are in Marion County.

    With a growing senior population, Marion County is becoming the ideal location for baby boomers seeking to expand their educational horizons and Central Florida Community College (CFCC) is meeting the need.

    Recently, the college received a boost to enhance its educational programs for senior citizens. The college was selected to receive a $10,000 expansion grant in the Plus 50 Initiative that serves the community’s senior population.

  • Learning to accept and understand people

    Many people consider the poor as lazy or stupid. If they worked harder, they’d be able to rise above their mean lives, some think. This may be true for a minority, but the majority are not in this category. Other things go into the equation.

    Susan Boyle comes to mind as a good example. Here’s a woman with a fine voice. Most would expect her to be very successful in her career. From news reports, it’s quite noticeable that she’s fragile emotionally. Some, as probably Ms. Boyle, need a quiet environment with as little pressure as possible.

  • Fourth of July 'Picnic in the Park'

    How about a little 'picnic in the park' for your Fourth of July?

    Old fashioned games, music and a reading of the Declaration of Independence are all part of the holiday fun planned at Dade Park, just west of Bushnell on Saturday, July 4th.

  • The rain didn't dampen Memorial Day services

    Just down the road apiece Preservist Frank Thomas, Commander, Spruce Creek Preserve Military Club, submitted the following for inclusion in this week’s Preserve column:

    Memorial Day 2009

    The Memorial Day Celebration here at Spruce Creek Preserve turned out to be another successful day. We have had tons of rain and we were skeptical of having a sunny day to fulfill a day of remembrance. It turned out to be a wonderful day for all to enjoy — a day to celebrate our servicemen and

    -women on Memorial Day.

  • Visiting Don Garlits'

    To continue our Marion County museum series, suppose I told you Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing is different from any other car museum. Suppose I said it is because Don’s museum doesn’t have any cars.

    He displays dragsters. And a dragster certainly isn’t a car, being mostly a monstrous engine bolted onto rails under a next-to-nothing body and having dinky bicycle wheels up front plus huge slick tires in back.

  • Driver arrested after crash

    On May 31, a sheriff’s deputy went to a single-vehicle accident on S.W. 38th Street and S.W. 51 Terrace. When he arrived, he saw a 2004 Ford on the shoulder of the road, parked at a 90-degree angle with the engine still running, according to a sheriff’s report.

    The driver, Manuel Eugene Turner, 55, of Ocala, was still behind the wheel, he smelled of alcohol and had “glossy” eyes, the arrest report said. The deputy had to help the man out and assist him in walking to a level part of the road.

  • Humane Society Trip

    “Shelter medicine with a heart.” That’s how Bruce Fishalow, executive director of the Humane Society of Marion County, described his philosophy to 14 SPCA members who recently took a field trip to the beautiful animal shelter in northwest Ocala.

    Since Bruce took over leadership in 2007, he and his 20 employees and numerous volunteers have turned this once shabby, sanctuary-like shelter into a viable, solvent organization that has seen adoptions soar to over 1,500 a year.

  • Sotomayor is the pick, but is she the right selection?

    Some readers might think that it’s too early to be trying to expose the type of person that 54-year-old Judge Sonia Sotomayor, the President’s Supreme Court nominee would make if confirmed by the U.S. Senate. She is Hispanic which covers a lot of Spanish speaking groups, including both those from Mexico and Puerto Rico. This lady was one of six contenders for the Court seat. The President picked the most liberal, so this is just the first preliminary report.

  • Baby Boomers benefit dance features Dedbeatz

    The Oak Run Baby Boomers are sponsoring a dance to benefit a local food bank. Admission is (at least) one can of food. Come to the Palm Grove Club on Saturday, June 20, from 7 to 11 p.m. There will be live old time rock and country music by "The Dedbeatz." BYOB and munchies.

    Showcase of the Stars

    The Showcase’s June evening of musical entertainment will be on Saturday, June 13, at 7 p.m. at the Palm Grove Club. Come hear talented fellow Oak Runners perform for your pleasure. As always, there is no admission charge.

    Fourth of July Celebration

  • Park contest entries keep rolling in

    More than a week into the contest to name the newest county park on S.R 200, about 145 entries have already been submitted.

    In fact, Marion County Parks and Recreation Department received so many responses in such a short period of time that the e-mail system locked up, said Cynthia Fifelski, administrative assistant for the parks department. The system, which was set up to receive 100 suggestions, was down for about four to five hours on Monday. To ensure it does not happen again, the e-mail has been changed to receive more entries.