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Beaches Leader
Beaches Leader

(904) 249-9033

1114 Beach Blvd
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250   Directions

Website

Beaches Watch to host meeting on schools and COVID
02/24/2021 12:13pm

Beaches Watch to host meeting on schools and COVIDNews StaffWed, 02/24/2021 - 01:13 pm Beaches Watch will host a panel of speakers to discuss Our Schools and COVID: Where are we Where are we going on Wednesday, March 3, at 7 p.m. Due to COVID-19 concerns, the meeting will be a virtual meeting and participants can join the meeting via computer or tablet using the Zoom platform, or participants can listen to the meeting via phone. The meeting is open to the public. For more details on how to join the meeting, visit www.BeachesWatch.com/event/March2021Meeting.Guest panelists will include: Elizabeth Andersen Duval School Board Representative for the Beaches Principal Dean Ledford Fletcher High School, Principal Chelsea Matthews Fletcher Middle School, Principal Kim Gallagher Atlantic Beach Elementary School, Nicole Gilbert Fletcher High School teacher, and a Fletcher High School senior student. This meeting will give beaches citizens the opportunity to learn about the impact COVID has had on our beaches schools, staff, and students as well as hear about plans for the future. There will be opportunities for meeting participants to ask the panel questions. Through this meeting, we will educate citizens about the impact COVID has had on our beaches schools over the last year and plans for the future of our schools as a result of COVID, said Beaches Watch President Maria Mark. Our panelists will help us understand what schools have learned from the COVID experience concerning student achievement, co-curricular activities, parental challenges, quarantines, as well as plans for graduation and end-of-year activities.

Jax Beach eyes improvements for Gonzalez Park
02/24/2021 8:16am

Jax Beach eyes improvements for Gonzalez ParkNews StaffWed, 02/24/2021 - 09:16 am The city is looking at updating the current setup at Gonzalez park. photo by David Bailey An audit conducted last year of Jacksonville Beach parks identified a critical need for improvements at Gonzalez Park. Parks and Recreation Director Jason Phitides offered a high-level snapshot of the assessment during the Feb. 8 City Council briefing to review the contents of the report and determine the next steps.City Manager Mike Staffopoulos said he intends to expedite a master design plan to reimagine the community park while addressing growing concerns over vagrancy in the area. Staff further recommends that such improvements be a first priority. Other park projects include replacing the playground equipment at Sunshine Park which Staffopoulos said would be done in 2022 rather than 2024 as originally planned.The study weighed such factors as amenities, safety and overall appearance of all parks. Gonzales Park was ranked highest in need of improvements. Staff reached out to nearby residents for input regarding amenities or improvements that could enhance utilization of the park. Other proposed upgrades included a small skateboard area, BMX pump track, water fountains, benches, artificial turf and upgrades to the basketball court.Officials were asked to consider whether to move forward with immediate updates to the existing restrooms and installation of pickleball courts which could be completed in an estimated three month period or engage a design firm to create a master plan. That process, Phitides said, could take up to 18 months to break ground.City officials would be required to approve the acceptance of the pickleball courts which are being donated by a local non-profit group. Other immediate improvements could include reconfiguring the two existing softball fields to create a multi-purpose field and the addition of a walking trail with fitness stations.This is a hard situation to give direction on because its something that needs to be done immediately but we dont want to waste resources even if theyre donated resources, said Councilor Georgette Dumont.The development of a Parks Strategy document will cover a five to 10-year window of probable park investments and enhancements and issue of urban trails with a master plan under development and park enhancements may be an integral part of such effort.While improvements are long overdue, Mayor Chris Hoffman cautioned that if the city opts to spend the money on an immediate fix, design consultants may determine the need for later changes. The cost to renovate the existing mens and womens restrooms each with four stalls is approximately $50,000 from the citys Parks and Recreation Maintenance reserve fund. City Manager Mike Staffopoulos said he will push to advance the redesign of the neighborhood park into the latter half of this fiscal year.I dont think we should let pickleball be the tail that wags the dog. What if we have professional consultants help us reimagine this park and they say thats not where the bathrooms should be but weve just spent money upgrading and repairing the bathrooms she said. It is a very poorly planned park and I fear that if we dont put a plan in place first that were going to end up with something like this.Councilor Sandy Golding said she supported any parallel action that would raise the parks current quality while also planning for long-term reimagining projects. I have heard a lot of people say that they dont go to Gonzalez Park even though they live close and that is a real shame, she said.However, Councilor Dan Janson also worried that moving ahead with individual projects could further delay the need for a complete reimagining of the park space. My fear is if we just do the renovations of the restrooms and the pickleball court, are we just putting a band-aid on the park and then it falls by the wayside, he said. I personally like the idea of doing a reimagined master plan and it being a priority. Gonzalez Park has been in poor form for quite some time and I dont want to just put a band-aid on it and not get anywhere with it. I fear that just doing the restrooms now, weve given a restroom to the homeless.Phitides said raising the activity level at the park would help curb the vagrancy issues. The city attorney along with the police department and parks department worked together to create Chapter 20 of our ordinances to give police some teeth to follow the trespass laws that will help us there, he said, adding that one family who participated in the audit survey indicated they were moving from the area because of safety concerns related to the vagrancy issue.Last September, city staff solicited community input regarding the park system to help prioritize the areas for improvement. Dumont urged city staff to look at the parks from both a community and destination perspective during the planning process. She advocated taking a holistic approach to the work that would support a cohesive park system citywide.We have a good understanding overall and our citizens are proud of the city, said Phitides. They love the parks and want to be engaged.

Flu shots are important for seniors
02/21/2021 9:39am

Flu shots are important for seniorsNews StaffSun, 02/21/2021 - 10:39 am Those at high risk for flu complications include people 65 years and older. Getting vaccinated for the flu is more important than ever. Not only will a flu shot help keep you and your family healthy, it can help reduce the strain on the healthcare system, and keep hospital beds and other medical resources available for people with coronavirus disease 2019 COVID-19.This is no ordinary flu season its a flu season amid a pandemic. With two dangerous viruses going around at once, its time for people to protect their communities by getting the vaccine already available: the flu vaccine.And people with Medicare are at greater risk for serious complications from flu. A flu shot is an important preventive tool for individuals with asthma, diabetes, and heart and lung disease chronic conditions that can increase the risk for serious flu-related health complications or even death. Its the best protection from getting and spreading this flu virus, and its covered by Medicare at no cost. Medicare Part B covers one flu shot per flu season per beneficiary. You pay nothing for a flu shot if your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider accepts Medicare payment for giving the shot.A flu shot wont protect you against COVID-19, but it has many other important benefits. Flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization, and death.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC, theres no evidence that a flu vaccination increases your risk of getting sick from a coronavirus, like the one that causes COVID-19.Those at high risk for flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people 65 years and older, and people with certain chronic health conditions. Anyone who is 6 months old or older should get a yearly flu vaccine.The CDC recommends getting vaccinated in September or October, but a flu shot anytime during the flu season can help protect you.Flu season in North America rarely begins before early October and usually lasts from December to March. In the past two years, the peak activity has occurred around mid-to-late February. Your body needs two weeks after a shot to develop a protective response to the influenza virus, so your best bet is to get vaccinated before the flu rate begins to climb.Workplaces and other settings that usually provide flu shots may not do so this season because of the challenges of maintaining social distancing. For more information on where you can get a flu vaccine, visit www.vaccinefinder.org.When going to get a flu shot, practice everyday preventive actions and follow the CDCs recommendations for running essential errands. Ask your doctor, pharmacist, or health department if they are following CDCs vaccination pandemic guidance. Any vaccination location following CDCs guidance should be a safe place for you to get a flu vaccine.If you have a child over 6 months old who qualifies for Medicaid or the Childrens Health Insurance Program CHIP, you may also qualify for a flu vaccination at no cost to you.Whats the difference between flu and COVID-19Influenza flu and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but theyre caused by different viruses. COVID-19 is caused by infection with a new coronavirus called SARS-CoV2 and flu is caused by infection with influenza viruses. Because some symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are similar, it may be hard to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone, and testing may be needed to help confirm a diagnosis.It is possible to have flu and COVID-19 at the same time. Health experts are still studying how common this can be.While its not possible to say with certainty what will happen in the fall and winter, the CDC believes its likely that flu viruses and the virus that causes COVID-19 will both be spreading.The CDC has developed a test that will check for A- and B-type seasonal flu viruses and SARS-CoV2, the virus that causes COVID-19. This test will be used by U.S. public health laboratories. Testing for these viruses at the same time will give public health officials important information about how flu and COVID-19 are spreading and what preventive steps should be taken.So protect yourself, your family, and your community by getting a flu shot. Visit the doctor, pharmacy, or other local providers to get a flu shot today.Information provided by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. from Family Features

2021's Springing the Blues canceled
02/17/2021 3:01pm

2021s Springing the Blues canceledNews StaffWed, 02/17/2021 - 04:01 pm For the second straight year, organizers of Springing the Blues have pulled the plug on the annual music festival. The decision was announced Feb. 15, citing continued concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.Originally scheduled for April 9 through 11, the festival has been postponed to April 1 through 3, 2022.The decision to postpone is out of an abundance of caution and concern for the safety and well-being of attendees, volunteers, staff, sponsors, performers, and vendors due to the risks and uncertainties surrounding COVID-19 and its variants as well as governmental restrictions placed on large crowd gatherings in order to lessen potential exposure and slow the spread of this deadly disease, according to a statement. We will be working to refund all tickets purchased for Springing the Blues automatically back to the payment method provided to us at the time of purchase.Executive Director Sam Veal said earlier this month that he planned to go ahead with festival, with restrictions in place. The 30thanniversary event was also canceled last year due to the pandemic. Veal reserved the same lineup he had booked for the the 2ndannual 30thAnniversary festival including the Lee Boys, Matt ORee, Victor Wainwright & the Train, Larry McCray and Vanessa Collier.Like a lot of folks, we were able to basically just change the year and the date on everything and just kind of pretend that 2020 never happened, said Veal.City officials recently approved a one-time exception to allow Jax Beach Festivals to stage the Seawalk Music Festival in June as a two-day event to replace the original date of Feb. 27 and 28. Jax Beach Festivals also produces Springing the Blues.Typically, with this time of year, we would only allow the one-day event but the sponsor of this particular event is asking for a one-time exception in order have two days for the event, said Jacksonville Beach City Manager Mike Staffopoulos, adding that staff was anticipating the cancellation of Springing the Blues because of the COVID-19 pandemic.Springing the Blues draws up to 125,000 people to Jacksonville Beach for three days of live blues and food. The event is usually held the first weekend in April unless it falls on Easter weekend.Veal said the financial fallout from the cancellations was devastating. Longtime poster artist David Lee created a special edition T-shirt to help recover the losses.All of the net proceeds will help fund the rebuilding efforts for 2022.Said Veal, You just have to hold your breath and hope for the best but plan for the worst. Section News

Downtown Vision announces Jax River Jams Concert Series
02/16/2021 8:57am

Downtown Vision announces Jax River Jams Concert SeriesNews StaffTue, 02/16/2021 - 09:57 am The Jax River Jams Concert Series will be held Thursdays in April at Riverfront Plaza, 2 W. Independent Dr, Jacksonville. artwork submitted Downtown Vision, Downtown Jacksonvilles non-profit Business Improvement District, recently announced the Jax River Jams Concert Series, a free four-week, multi-genre Thursday night concert series to be held on the St. Johns Riverfront in Downtown Jacksonville in April.National headliners, and local and regional openers, will be announced. The concert series will feature a Small Business & Artist Market, food trucks and bars with local craft beer and spirits. Camp chairs and picnic blankets are encouraged. This outdoor event series will be held in accordance with CDC guidelines hand sanitizer stations and face masks will be available onsite. Face masks and social distancing will be required.We invite employees to stay downtown after work, and for the community to come Downtown and enjoy this free live music concert series safely in a spacious outdoor environment, said Jake Gordon, CEO of Downtown Vision. Were excited to cultivate this amenity for downtown and are working hard to create an inclusive event where there will be something for everyone.Twenty community partners and sponsors with a shared vision have come together to make this concert series possible. The series, designed to be an accessible and inclusive celebration for Jacksonville and beyond, mixes local talent and cultural assets with national acts to welcome the community downtown and showcase its potential as a vibrant, 24-hour urban neighborhood.VyStar Credit Union is the title sponsor for the series.At VyStar, we believe Jacksonville is at its best when we have a thriving downtown that can be enjoyed by residents and visitors of all ages, said Brian Wolfburg, president/CEO of VyStar. The upcoming concert series is a great example of what can be accomplished when we work together, and we are thrilled to have it take place in our backyard. We look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones there.Additional sponsors for Jax River Jams include the Jessie Ball duPont Fund, the Tourist Development Council, One Enterprise Center, Vestcor, Danis, Downtown Investment Authority, JWB Real Estate Capital, Miller Electric, Regency Centers, Manifest Distilling and Marlin and Barrel. Event partners and producers include the city of Jacksonville, Downtown Vision, Florida Theatre, JAX Chamber, Visit Jacksonville, AVL Productions and the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville.The concerts will be held at Riverfront Plaza the former site of The Jacksonville Landing, 2 W. Independent Dr., Jacksonville.Gates will open at 5 p.m.Visit JaxRiverJams.com for more information. Interested sponsors may contact Eduardo Santos at EduardoDTJax.org for more information. Section News

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 to Rebrand WJCT-TV as Jax PBS
02/10/2021 4:00am

Media Contact:Neily BrarenPromotion & Marketing Associate, WJCT904.318.2633 nbrarenwjct.org FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WJCT Public Media to Rebrand WJCT-TV as Jax PBSNew name to appear on-air on February 24, 2021 Jacksonville, Fla. Feb. 10, 2021 WJCT Public Media announced today that WJCT-TV will be rebranded as Jax PBS, effective February 24, 2021. As WJCT continues to move toward production ...

WJCT Public Media to Host Community Conversation in Connection with PBS’ “The Black Church”
02/03/2021 3:45pm

Media Contact:Neily BrarenPromotion & Marketing Associate, WJCT904.318.2633 nbrarenwjct.org FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WJCT Public Media to Host Community Conversation in Connection with PBS The Black ChurchSupport provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Jacksonville, Fla. Feb. 2, 2021 WJCT Public Media today announced it will host a community conversation and launch an interactive initiative in connection with The ...

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 ...

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

Two injured during school bus accident on Jones Road
02/24/2021 5:38pm

Nine students were on the bus from Dinsmore Elementary along with the bus driver.

3 Jacksonville officer-involved shootings ruled justified by state attorney's office
02/24/2021 5:39pm

In all three cases, the state attorney found the officers acted appropriately because they were reasonably in fear for their life.

DCPS holds meeting on renaming schools
02/24/2021 6:57pm

The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Robert. E. Lee High School.

Jacksonville Walmart hosting COVID-19 vaccine event at Lem Turner Road location
02/24/2021 1:16pm

Walmart will begin administering the Pfizer vaccine at a drive-thru clinic on Lem Turner Road beginning Thursday.

'It's very humbling': Community supports, raises money for JSO officer diagnosed with ALS
02/24/2021 7:11pm

Jimmy Judge was diagnosed with ALS in May. Friends of his in the community have held fundraisers and raised money to help him pay medical bills.

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Darley's Plumbing
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