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Beaches Leader
Beaches Leader

(904) 249-9033

1114 Beach Blvd
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250   Directions

Website

Furever Friends
01/15/2021 8:24am

Furever FriendsNews StaffFri, 01/15/2021 - 09:24 am Genesis and Trixie are waiting for their forever homes. photos submitted Genesiswas found with a tail injury and an owner could not be found. Mayport Cats rescued her and lovingly fostered her while she recovered from her amputated tail. She has a sleek and shiny black coat and is about 1 year old. She is very mellow, sweet andloving, is spayed, and up to date on her shots. Could you be the one to give Genesis her forever home where she can be lovedTrixie is a beautifulTabby and white girl who is 10 years old and had the unfortunate circumstance of losing her beloved owner. No one in the family wanted her and Mayport Cats stepped in to rescue her. She has been rescued for several months and has been overlooked because she is scared and withdrawn since the passing of her owner. She will do best in a quiet home. She has lots of years left in her to give and receive love, and deserves a break. She is spayed and up to date on her shots she just needs a loving, quiet home. A kind donor has sponsored her adoption fee. Meet Genesis, Trixie and their friends at Petco Marsh Landing, where they are patientlywaiting for theiradopters.For more information, call 904-318-0789.

Farmer's market to continue
01/14/2021 8:23am

Farmers market to continue Atlantic Beach is weighing fee options News StaffThu, 01/14/2021 - 09:23 am photo from www.DigLocal.org A local nonprofit will continue to host a twice-weekly farmers market at an Atlantic Beach park while city officials weigh whether or not to assess a fee for the use. Dig Local has operated the market space at Jack Russell Park at no charge since relocating from Jarboe Park in Neptune Beach because of COVID-19.City officials will weigh whether to permit the same use as other groups that pay a nominal yearly fee to hold events in city parks or assess a recurring charge as outlined in the code of ordinances.Dig Local recently submitted a proposal to city staff allowing them to continue using the facilities at no charge, thoughthey paid the city of Neptune Beachfor use of its facilities when located at Jarboe Park. Some residents weighed in on social media, saying that the nonprofit should not be exempt from adhering to the citys policy.In Atlantic Beach, city ordinance requires nonprofit organizations using city parks and parking spaces on a recurring basis to pay $25 per event, but it has not been enforced as it relates to these weekly markets.Dig Local board member Kira Mauro addressed the City Commission Jan. 11 about the imagined controversy over the $25, which the board finds to be reasonable and perfectly acceptable. She said the group was unaware of the nonprofit use fee when the proposal was submitted to city staff.Just to clear up some confusion about what we had requested in our proposed contract and why, previous to 2020, our Wednesday green market was held at Bull Park for a number of years. At that time, there was no fee requested of us or ever mentioned to us. We were unaware of the existence of this nonprofit use fee. In 2020, moving our Saturday market from Neptune Beach first to the parking lot behind city hall and then into Jack Russell Park, we remained unaware. Since we hadnt worked out a formal agreement with the city, the topic never really came up, she said.Of all the events that happened in 2020, the one positive was for our relationship with Atlantic Beach and the support in serving our community working together to get food to families that need it. When we started developing a long-term plan to use Jack Russell Park, we consulted with some of the other users of Jack Russell Park, and we were told by the Atlantic Beach Athletic Association that their fee was just a nominal $1 per year for their contract. We assumed that was typical of a nonprofit contract with the city, that there was just some nominal fee to formalize the fact that a payment had been made and a contract had been signed so we moved forward with our proposal based on that.As a nonprofit organization, Dig Local promotes sellinglocally grown and made food and crafts, and vendors are charged $20 for a Saturday market and $5 to set up at a mid-week market on Wednesdays. The funds benefit a small stipend for the administration of the SNAP/EBT program at the market where shoppers can have their SNP dollars matched to shop local, and help support Dig Locals childrens education programs to promote healthy eating and healthy cooking through local produce at The Gail Baker Center.Dig Local also operates two local community gardens in Atlantic Beach and Neptune Beach. The third community garden is manned by BEAM onsite in Jacksonville Beach.All of the board members and those manning Dig Local booths to process SNAP transactions, helping vendors set up and break down, staffing kids activities, selling plant cuttings from the community gardens and assisting shoppers with their no-contact food box orders are all volunteers.Mauro said Dig Local plans to resubmit its proposed agreement with the city to reflect the $25 a day use fee for the Wednesday and Saturday markets.We hope that will resolve any conflict imagined or otherwise with the city, she said. I hope we can move forward with serving this community together.Commissioner Britney Norris questioned whether other events like the Songwriters Night are assessed a $25 fee. Other events hosted in partnership with the city are also held at no charge.Do we have language as to what constitutes a partner asked Norris. My concern is that if we nitpick with Dig Local, thats going to set a precedent and thats going to affect all of the events, even the baseball folks. Do we have to charge them $25 every time they want to use the parkAccording to Timmy Johnson, the citys director of recreation and special events, the green market used to be a recreation committee event at Bull Park and thus was exempt from a nonprofit use fee. Other events, such as Tonys Turkey Trot, come through the citys Contribution Program and such events that are regulated by the Cultural Committee are considered city-sponsored events.We spoke with Dig Local about taking it over and it went before the City Commission and the City Commission approved it, Johnson said of the reason the group was never assessed the usage fee.City Manager Shane Corbin said Dig Local can continue to operate the markets at no charge while the city mulls its position on the ordinance regulating the assessment of nonprofit use fees.They have been a great partner. The only issue we have, and we are trying to work through, is the parking. Parking is a challenge during baseball season, so we are in a weird spot, he said. As a city planner, we want to put farmers markets everywhere and here weve got a great one, but we have a parking capacity issue. We are trying to work through that and find a sweet spot so we can still accommodate all the baseball players. Its a math issue and strictly a math issue.Mayor Ellen Glasser said the issue will be on the agenda for discussion at the next City Commission meeting.I do appreciate the offer to rewrite the contract, but I think the commission needs to focus on this a little bit. When we get competing interests, then how do you weigh the equities of that she said. We will have to come up with some language because the code is silent on it right now. We can go in whatever direction makes sense.The Dig Local Network farmers markets are held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays at Jack Russell Park. Visitwww.DigLocal.orgfor more information.

'Pastor Mike' is retiring from St. Andrew's Lutheran Church
01/14/2021 7:53am

Pastor Mike is retiring from St. Andrews Lutheran ChurchNews StaffThu, 01/14/2021 - 08:53 am The Rev. Michael Blaker retires this month after serving St. Andrews Lutheran Church for the last 19 years. photo by Linda Borgstede By Linda Borgstede, Staff Writer religionbeachesleader.com When a minister comes out of seminary in the Lutheran tradition, he or she is called to that first church. He or she serves there usually for three years before moving on to a new call. Statistically, that second relationship goes on for seven years.The Rev. Michael Blaker has messed up the statistics. He came to the ministry as a second career, and his first call out of Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary was to St. Andrews Lutheran Church in Jacksonville Beach. At the end of the month, Blaker retires from this local church after serving there for 19 years.St. Andrews Lutheran Church is located at 1801 Beach Blvd.He explains that tenure: The children of God here in this congregation and I were in line with the Holy Spirit.The first career for him was in the securities industry. After working for brokerage houses such as Merrill Lynch, he became a securities fraud investigator for the State of Florida. He lived in his native Tallahassee.He recalled one specific time when he and his wife, Jana, were having dinner with his father. He points to that as the turning point when conversation led to moving to a new career.I had been active in the Lutheran church, he said, and I felt stirrings at that point. This was a turning point in life.It meant a move to Columbia, S.C., for seminary. He became, as so many in the community call him, Pastor Mike.The call from St. Andrews brought the Blakers back to Florida. This is home and will continue to be home after Blaker retires.Jana Blaker is a Certified Public Accountant working corporate accounts at TIAA Bank. She is not retiring, but she has a bucket list that the couple are honoring. A trip to Italy was planned for this year, but COVID intervened. As happened to so many others, the plans had to be postponed.Local non-profits who serve the Beaches stand to benefit from Pastor Mikes availability. He is actively searching for volunteer opportunities.I dont want to be sitting at a desk, he said. I want to be active, moving around and involved with people. I like engaging with people.He also plans to provide pulpit supply for other ministers, and he has already received several requests for this.It is always recommended that retirees take some time off before getting involved in the next stage. The Blakers plan to escape for three weeks, and then he will continue his time off for a little bit longer.Play more golf, read the 10 years of books that have been piling up, get better about working out.In his 19 years, what has he watched over at St. Andrews LutheranThe church was healthy, but the facilities needed improvement.Those were accomplished, but Pastor Mike puts his emphasis on people, not buildings or numbers.I have seen the spirit, the attitude of the congregation become more Christ-like. This congregation has experienced spiritual growth.He leaves the church with financial reserves. He leaves a congregation that is active in the community. St. Andrews members participate with food for BEAM, volunteers in Meals on Wheels, cooking for Mission House, collecting toys for St. Vincent de Paul, and preparing Thanksgiving baskets for clients of BEAM, even in this pandemic year. There is a quilting ministry and a ladies knitting and crocheting ministry.The church is not about a building or a pastor, but about Jesuss call to love each other and community. If the people feel a closer connection to God, if I helped with that, my job is done.Pastor Mikes contribution to the ecumenical movement in this community has been significant. He has been active in the Beaches Ministerial Association, BMA, the coalition of local spiritual leaders. He provided worship at Pablo Towers and Pablo Hammock, and was a part of the BMAs Easter Sunrise Services. When that group grew small with the retirement of several of its longtime leaders, Pastor Mike was the one who kept in touch with other pastors. He worked with the Rev. Nathan Loewen to bring BMA back to an active status.Its been one of the joys of life, he said.For me, the greatest joy of ministry has been the people. My lens to interpret theology is based on 1 John 4:8, which says God is love. This is self sacrificing love, agape. I have patterned my ministry and teaching on that. Its all about love.One member of his congregation at St. Andrews had given him a title that goes with him into his next career, the Love Apostle. Section News

Pastor of Neptune Baptist Church remembered by many in community
12/31/2020 6:02pm

Pastor of Neptune Baptist Church remembered by many in communityNews StaffThu, 12/31/2020 - 07:02 pm Tom Bary, pastor at Neptune Baptist Church, died of COVID-19. photo submitted Neptune Baptist Church has lost its pastor to COVID-19. After a month in intensivecare, Pastor Tom Bary succumbedto the virus Dec. 16. Church officials released news of Barys death on the churchs social media page.It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our friend and pastor, Tom Bary, the post read. Heaven called him home late last night.Family and members of the congregation gathered Saturday for socially distanced services at the church. The services were also live streamed and shared stories of Barys life, his calling and his love for his church and his family.Minister of education and evangelism Tanya McAvoy said the pastor was beloved by people all over the world for his guidance and encouragement. Many reached out in the wake of his passing to share stories about his service from baptisms to wedding ceremonies to funeral services.This is not anything any of us expected or were ready for. Weve been talking about Tom nonstop, the last month. Especially, and the one thing I was thinking is, How do you do a funeral for the Funeral Man Pastor Tom was the Funeral Man, he was the man in town who did all the funerals for anyone who needed a pastor. That was part of his ministry to love and care for people all over this town that needed a pastor in their most special time of need. He shepherded in every season, birth, death, crisis, and comfort. He was our great shepherd. For 36 years, he had given his entire life to this flock of people. His legacy is endless.Bary was known for his passion for sports, particularly Major League baseball, his sense of humor and he loved playing practical jokes on his friends and family.For 12 years, Bary was the associate pastor and minister of youth at Neptune Baptist Church. He then became the minister to single adults at Germantown Baptist Church in Tennessee before returning to Neptune Baptist Church as pastor in fall 1996. Bary helped grow the King of the Hill surf contest with proceeds benefiting Mission House.He loved Neptune and was so inspirational to us during this COVID crisis when many would have stayed back and stayed home, he was emphatic that we would be a light in the darkness, said McAvoy, adding that Bary helped establish a drive-through prayer service and a weekly food share to help families struggling with the economic fallout of the pandemic.According to the churchs Web site, Bary received a bachelors degree in history from the University of North Florida. He later received a master of divinity in pastoral counseling and a doctor of ministry degree in evangelism and church growth from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. Bary and his wife, Karen, have a son and three daughters.When he showed up as the youth pastor, he quickly took note of Karen right away. When she came on that summer, he instantly needed a chaperone for every student retreat and trip or even just to the bowling alley. Even on the way to their proposal, they were in ministry together. They made a stop to the hospital downtown to minister to families in need. Always ministering and his flock were on his heart, said McAvoy.He was 100 percent at everything and he had a great love for his family. He would never miss a sporting event or an outing with his kids and he set that precedent for his staff. We could do anything we needed to do in light of our families, said McAvoy.His son, Andrew, delivered a pre-recorded message thanking the ICU staff at Baptist Medical Center Beaches for caring for his father. Barys daughter, Megan, said she found comfort in knowing her father would be touched by the generosity of the community he was grateful to be part of.He loved this community with his whole heart, she said. He would have felt so treasured and appreciated by this extremely kind and overflowing of thoughtfulness that youve shown him and us these last several weeks, said Megan Bary.Megan shared the words her father wrote for his own mothers funeral.I knew right away that I needed to use his words with some artistic liberties. His words to his mother are now my words to him. My dad and I had a very special relationship. Not only was he my father, he was my best friend, my confidante and my biggest supporter, she said.Two words keep coming to mind whole and happy. The community begged and pleaded for my dad to be healed. I am here today to joyfully say our prayers have been answered. He is now so whole and so completely happy. Not an earthly happiness that can be temporary but a sustaining, everlasting joy. Section News

Deck The Chairs top decorators named
12/31/2020 5:58pm

Deck The Chairs top decorators namedNews StaffThu, 12/31/2020 - 06:58 pm The American Legion won Best in Show at Deck The Chairs. photo courtesy of Deck The Chairs Entering its sixth and final week of the 2020 holiday season, Jacksonville Beachs Deck The Chairs, Jacksonvilles Best Holiday Event has showcased Santa, hosted Tuba Christmas, produced three weekends of childrens dance programming, presented chair decorating awards and unexpectedly, surpassed attendance numbers of any previous year. Public safety is foremost for DTC organizers, especially in a year where health and well-being are challenged by a pandemic. A new exhibit layout with multiple hand-sanitizing stations and free masks helps organizers keep this popular family-friendly outdoor experience safe and accessible.Activities scheduled during the day and late afternoon limited the possibility of overlap between program audiences and exhibit attendees. These adjustments balanced out park activity and improved visitor experience. Utilizing concession sales as one method to track visitor attendance, DTC has seen an increase over last year of about 30 percent.After tabulating more than 2,000 votes, organizers have announced these top chair decorators for 2020:The American LegionBest In Show Pablo TowersFirst Place Fur Sisters Furever UrsRescueSecond Place Beaches Go Green Octopus Garden Third Place Boys and Girls Club of NE Florida with Florida Turf, Beachside Swim, UNF Alumni Associationwith DPR Construction and Saint PaulsCatholic SchoolHonorable Mentions.To learn more or to volunteer, visit www.deckthechairs.org.

Florida Times-Union
Florida Times-Union

(904) 359-4111

1 Riverside Ave
Jacksonville, FL 32202   Directions

Website

Folio Weekly
Folio Weekly

(904) 260-9770

9456 Philips Hwy #11
Jacksonville, FL 32256   Directions

Website

Hola Noticias
Hola Noticias

(904) 683-2198

9831 Beach Blvd
Jacksonville, FL 32246   Directions

Website

WJAX-TV 47 - CBS and WFOX-TV 30 - FOX
WJAX-TV 47 - CBS and WFOX-TV 30 - FOX

(904) 996-0400

11700 Central Pkwy
Jacksonville, FL 32224   Directions

Website

WJCT-TV
WJCT-TV

(904) 353-7770

100 Festival Park Ave
Jacksonville, FL 32202   Directions

Website

WJCT Public Media Launches the 2021 PBS Kids Writers Contest
01/04/2021 4:00pm

Media Contact:Neily BrarenPromotion & Marketing Associate, WJCT904.318.2633 nbrarenwjct.org FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WJCT Public Media Launches the 2021 PBS Kids Writers ContestEntries will be accepted January 1 through March 15, 2021 January 4, 2020 Jacksonville, Fla. WJCT Public Media today announced the launch of the 2021 WJCT PBS Kids Writers Contest. The organization will accept entries from January ...

WJCT Public Media and BritBox Bring Downton Abbey to Jax Bundle Subscribers
12/28/2020 4:00pm

Media Contact:Neily BrarenPromotion & Marketing Associate, WJCT904.318.2633 nbrarenwjct.org FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WJCT Public Media and BritBox Bring Downton Abbey to Jax Bundle SubscribersAcclaimed British drama adds value to newest member benefit Dec. 28, 2020 Jacksonville, Fla. WJCT Public Media and BritBox announced on December 26, 2020 that Jax Bundle subscribers can now enjoy access to the biggest ...

WJXT-TV 4
WJXT-TV 4

(904) 399-4000

4 Broadcast Pl
Jacksonville, FL 32207   Directions

Website

WJXX-TV 25 - ABC and WTLV-TV 12 - NBC
WJXX-TV 25 - ABC and WTLV-TV 12 - NBC

(904) 354-1212

1070 E Adams St
Jacksonville, FL 32202   Directions

Website

President Biden to call for end of federally run private prisons
01/26/2021 12:56pm

Biden is set to sign a series of orders Tuesday as the new administration says it will make combatting racial injustice a central focus of his presidency.

Middleburg couple turn themselves in for alleged role in US Capitol insurrection
01/26/2021 12:17pm

First Coast News is working to learn more about the nature of their alleged crimes.

Curry: Duval County secures new vaccine supply from Florida once federal supplies arrive
01/26/2021 5:13am

In a tweet Monday, Mayor Curry said the city will receive the new supply of the COVID-19 vaccine after the state receives supplies from the federal government.

Biden says 1.5 million vaccinations per day by spring possible
01/26/2021 12:48pm

The Biden administration wants to get out 1 million vaccinations per day within the next three weeks, and increase that to 1.5 million in the weeks after.

Margaritaville Beach Hotel, LandShark Bar & Grill open Tuesday in Jacksonville Beach
01/26/2021 7:19am

The estimated $50 million resort hotel project finished at least a month early despite COVID-19 pandemic.

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