Senior Center offers hearing help today

The Franklin County Senior Citizens Center will have a group of health care professionals in the Center on Thursday, May 23 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to test for possible hearing problems and to pass out free telephones for the hearing-impaired.

The Center, at the corner of NW Avenue "F" and NW Ist Street in Carrabelle, can be reached by calling 697-3760.  Everyone in Franklin County is urged to come by and take advantage of the opportunity.


Full Moon Climb Friday at lighthouse

The May Full Moon Climb at the Cape St. George Lighthouse on St. George Island will be held on Friday, May 24.  The Sunset/Full Moon Climb will take place from 8: to 9:30 p.m. and will include light hors d'oeuvres and a sparkling cider toast to the full moon. Cost is $15 for the general public and $10 for members of the St. George Lighthouse Association.

The sun will set at 8:31 p.m. and the moon will rise at 8:14 p.m. on May 24. 

After sunset, people are invited to climb to the top of the lighthouse for a breathtaking view of the full moon, as space and time permit.  Cost is $10 for the general public and $5 for SGLA members.

The Cape St. George Light is in St. George Lighthouse Park at the center of St. George Island, where Island Drive (the road off the bridge) ends at Gulf Beach Drive.  Parking is available in lots at either side of the park.

Because space is limited, reservations are recommended.  For reservations or more information, please contact the Lighthouse Gift Shop at 927-7745.


Plantation announces 2013 photo contest

The St. George Plantation 2013 Photo Contest will run June 1 through Aug. 28. Entrants may submit photographs of St. George Island, Apalachicola or Franklin County, accompanied by a written release form granting St. George Plantation Owners’ Association permission to publish your photo.

Any person identifiable in the photograph must also sign the release. A parent must sign the release for any minor pictured.

Include the following information on a label affixed to the back of the photograph. Your name, address and phone number and title of photo or brief description.

Entries must be on disk and professionally printed or in PDF or JPG format of less than 5 MB.Entry must be mailed or emailed ( by Aug. 28, to Plantation Photo Contest, 1712 Magnolia Road, St. George Island, FL 32328

Two entries per photographer. Entry fee is $5 per entry with check made payable to SGPOA at the above address.

Winners will be notified by Sept. 13, 2013. First place is $150, second place is $100, third place is $50 and People’s Choice $50


Time to register for The Nest summer program

The Nest summer program will be hosting a registration night Thursday, May 23 from 3:30-5:45 p.m. (drop-in) at the Franklin County Learning Center (85 School Rd, Eastpoint) and the Carrabelle Municipal Complex (1001 Gray Ave).

If your child plans to attend the summer program at either the Eastpoint or Carrabelle sites, you must have attended one of these events with the child(ren) you plan to enroll.

Parents will receive information about the program and children will select among several summer enrichment choices, such as drama, dance, recreation and more. Students in grades Pre-K-8th grades are eligible to attend.

This year’s theme is “Around the World in 28 Days” and we will learn all about Japan, Mexico, Ireland, Australia, Kenya, and China. During every child’s visit to each country, students will read high-interest fiction and non-fiction books, complete fascinating science experiments, create their own ethnic foods, and more.

The summer program begins Wednesday, June 12 and runs through July 31. The program meets at the Franklin County Learning Center and Carrabelle Municipal Complex sites, from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday (Closed July 4). Free breakfasts and lunches are served daily. Come out and join us for a very exciting and educational summer of fun!

For more information, contact Carrabelle site leader Joy Shiver at 697-2177 or Eastpoint site leader Emily Spindler at 670-2820.


FCHS plans graduation events

Franklin County High School’s Senior Recognition Night will be at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 31 in the school cafeteria.

The Commence Ceremony will be at 7 p.m. in the high school gymnasium on Friday, June 7. The public is invited to both events.


Armory fee waived for Calendar Girl Cabaret

At their May 7 meeting, the county commission voted unanimously to waive the Armory rental fee for the Oct. 19 fundraiser staged by Franklin Needs, Inc. for breast cancer awareness and mammography screenings.


Allen ice machine approved

At their May 7 regular meeting, county commissioners accepted the unanimous recommendation of the planning and zoning board (P&Z) and approved a commercial site plan to locate an ice vending machine at 95 US 98, the northwest corner of US 98 and North Bayshore Drive in Eastpoint.

The request submitted by John Pritchard, agent/applicant for Bob Allen, had been discussed at the April 16 meeting after P&Z recommended the plan be denied. County commissioners then directed that a changed version of the original proposal be reviewed at an emergency P&Z meeting.

 At the May 7 meeting, the ice machine was approved with the requirements that it have a one-way entrance and exit off of North Bayshore Drive, with permanent fencing or bollard system to keep traffic from entering off US 98. There must also be a clearly defined driving surface made of shell and lime rock.


Airport aces inspection

On May 7, County Director of Administrative Services Alan Pierce told commissioners the airport passed its annual Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) inspection on April 26.

 “We have a few trees along the perimeter that need to be dealt with but otherwise the inspector said the airport looked good,” said Pierce, who is also the airport manager.

Pierce thanked Daryl McKinley for assisting the Fixed Base Operator Crystal Air Aviation in getting the airport ready for inspection. “One of my goals is to get the airport standing on its own,” Pierce said. “This is the first time we did not have the county crew out there mowing the grass before an inspection.”

Commissioners voted unanimously to send a letter of thanks to McKinley.

At the same meeting, the board voted unanimously to sign an amended joint participation agreement with FDOT for $70,000 worth of additional funds for improvements at the airport. The funds will be spent on security or drainage improvements


Tropicana public speaking program Friday

The Franklin County School had their school 4H Public Speaking Competition on May 17. The annual countywide 4-H Tropicana Public Speaking contest will be held on at the Franklin County School at 9 a.m. on Friday, May 24.


Department of Transportation beautification funding approved

On Tuesday, the count commission voted unanimously to accept funding for roadside beautification from the Florida Department of Transportation (DOT).

At the March 5 county meeting, County Planner Alan Pierce told commissioners $50,000 in DOT funding was available for roadside plantings to beautify the right of way along US 98.  A $10,000 budget was earmarked for each county district. The DOT grant specified that money be limited to plants and “plant support materials,” like irrigation.

Pierce specified that each site be furnished with irrigation to support the new plantings.  The grant required that 50 percent of the funding be used for large plant material, i.e. five gallon containers or larger.

Two of the sites chosen, US 98 and Hefernan Drive in Lanark Village and Island Drive in Eastpoint will be planted with large specimen palms.

Three other sites, Carrabelle Beach Wayside Park, Seafood Workers County Park, west of Apalachicola and the lawn of the County Courthouse, designed by Nikki Millender director of Parks and Recreation, will be planted with shrubs and perennials supporting migrating birds and butterflies.

Pierce said the county has a year to complete the plantings and he anticipates planting will occur this fall.


Sanders receives note from Scott


At the May 21 county meeting, Chair Cheryl sanders shared a handwritten not she received from Governor Rick Scott with other board members.

Sanders said the n ote simply asked,  “How can I help with job creation?”

Sanders said, “We will work with him in any way we can and suggested the Greensteel Factory in Carrabelle was in need of a corporate tenant. She also said she plans to ask the governor about improving the industrial park at the Apalachicola regional Airport.

Sanders said, “By this card I think he’s really interested in us.”

Commissioner Pinki Jackel agreed, “He’s been down here when we invited him.  I think he’s really interested. We are facing long-term problems with the bay and we really need to diversify our economy.”

Sanders said, “People has realized there is a life off the water but now, we’re going to have to have good paying jobs.”


Vrooman Park reopens

Repairs to Vrooman Park are complete.  Repairs to damage caused by an April wind storm and a vehicle that left the adjacent road and entered the park in March. The total cost for repairs to the park was $27,342. Parks and Recreation was responsible for $10,000 of the cost for the required deductibles for the two incidents.  The park reopened Monday, May 20.