Tuesday, January 16, 2018
News Roundup

Fantasy Five winner in Weeki Wachee; more local news

LOCAL FANTASY 5 WINNER: One of the four winning tickets in the Florida Lottery's Fantasy 5 drawing on Monday was purchased at Prime Time Food, 7387 Shoal Line Blvd., Weeki Wachee.

The winning numbers were 3, 14, 19, 23 and 26. Each winner receives $51,274.62. The other tickets were purchased in Miami, Jacksonville and Fernandina Beach.

DISCOUNTED ANIMAL ADOPTIONS: Hernando County Animal Services is offering Father's Day Discount Days through June 22 at the shelter, 19250 Oliver St., Brooksville.

Adoption fee for all male cats and dogs over 6 months old will be waived. The only cost is the $10 Hernando County licensing fee.

The facility is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays; and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays.

For information, call (352) 796-5062.

CONTROLLED BURNS SCHEDULED: The Southwest Florida Water Management District will be conducting prescribed burns in the Weekiwachee Preserve throughout June. Approximately 400 acres will be burned in small, manageable units.

The burns are part of routine maintenance of lands managed by the district in order to prevent uncontrolled wildfires and to enhance the area's natural conditions. Burns will be conducted only when weather conditions are favorable.

Efforts will be made to ensure that smoke will not affect homes or highways, but motorists should use caution in cases when smoke reduces visibility. For information, call (352) 796-7211 or toll-free 1-800-423-1476, ext. 4467.

SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINE NEARS: The Ridge Manor Property Owners Association will accept applications for scholarships through June 21.

The scholarships are for graduating high school seniors who are Ridge Manor residents and plan to attend college in the fall.

For information or an application, call Gayle Twomey at (352) 232-5188.

ART RECEPTION: A reception for the Spring Art Exhibit will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery, 201 Howell Ave., Brooksville.

A special feature will be the artwork of Faith Academy art students.

Refreshments will be served, courtesy of the Junior Service League of Brooksville and the Hernando County Arts Council. There will also be culinary treats from local restaurants, including Mallie Kyla's Cafe, Southern Ladies and a Gent, Florida Cracker Kitchen, Luigi's Pizza, Auro Community Garden, Publix Supermarkets, Coney Island Drive Inn and the Rising Sun Cafe.

FAMILY, MUSIC FUNDRAISING EVENT: A family activity and music festival will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. June 29 at Toscana Crossing Golf Club, 7406 St. Andrews Blvd., in the Heather, north of Weeki Wachee.

There will be a cookout, a silent auction, live music, door prizes and use of the facility's amenities, including swimming, tennis, volleyball and golf after 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are $15 per person or $40 per family of four. For tickets, call Kathryn Vanderplough at (352) 340-4778.

All proceeds will benefit the music program at Weeki Wachee High School.

Toscana will also host a golf tournament that day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the music program. The tourney will be two-member teams. The entry fee is $35. Cash prizes will be awarded: $300 for first place, $150 for second and $75 for third. To register, call Barbara Phillips at Toscana, (352) 596-2019.

BEACH PARTY AT THE LIBRARY: Local youth are invited to a Beach Bash from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday at the West Hernando/S.T. Foggia Branch Library, 6335 Blackbird Ave., Spring Hill.

The program is geared for children ages 8 to 12 and will include beach-themed crafts and activities.

It is sponsored by the Friends of the Library of Hernando County. There is no cost. However, space is limited, and registration is required. Sign up on the website at hernandocounty library.us, call (352) 754-4043 or stop by the library.

STUDENT ART WANTED FOR EXHIBIT: In conjunction with the Hernando County Courthouse Centennial Celebration that is planned for October, event organizers are inviting middle school and high school students to submit artwork depicting the historic courthouse in downtown Brooksville.

The entries will be displayed during a two-day celebration inside the courthouse at 20 N Main St. Call (352) 540-6780.

PARADE ENTRIES WANTED: The High Point community invites clubs, organizations and individuals to participate in its annual Fourth of July Parade.

Registration and lineup will be at 8:30 a.m. July 4 near the guard house, just off Cortez Boulevard. The parade will start promptly at 9 a.m., ending at the community center at 12249 Club House Road.

At the center, there will be a traditional flag raising ceremony with American Legion Post 186. Awards will be presented, and refreshments will be available.

Entry forms are available at the guard house. For information, call Sylvia at (352) 596-6006.

LEARN TO PROTECT TREES DURING STORMS: A free class, "Preventing Storm Damage on Your Trees," will be offered at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the Hernando County Cooperative Extension Service, 1653 Blaise Drive, Brooksville.

Participants will learn the importance of having landscape trees ready for heavy winds during hurricane season. Presented by master gardener and certified arborist Ken Morgan.

There is no cost and no registration required. First come, first seated. For information, call (352) 754-4433.

AUCTION BENEFITS 4-H: The annual Jolly Ranchers 4-H Auction will be June 29 at the Hernando County Fairgrounds, 6436 S Broad St., Brooksville. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.; the event starts at 6:30 p.m.

There will be door prizes, a silent auction, raffles, a steak dinner and entertainment by Brian Chytka.

Tickets are $15; $8 for children 12 and younger.

Funds raised will go toward the Jolly Ranchers 4-H Club's field trip to Washington, D.C., as well as to help with the animal projects for 2014.

For additional information or for tickets, call Susan at (352) 585-3577 or Shari at (352) 585-1064.

BOOK GROUP TO MEET: The East Hernando Book Discussion Group will meet from 2 to 3 p.m. June 21 at the East Hernando Branch Library, 6457 Windmere Road, Ridge Manor West.

The book to be discussed is My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte. Registration is not required, but copies of the book are limited.

To reserve a copy, stop by the front desk at the library or call (352) 754-4043.

Florida love triangle led to a murder-for-hire plot, police say. But the wrong woman was killed.

Florida love triangle led to a murder-for-hire plot, police say. But the wrong woman was killed.

Heartbreak and jealously were the twin engines driving the scheme, police would later say. Ishnar Marie Lopez-Ramos was in love. The object of the 35-year-old Floridian’s affection, however, was tangled up with another woman. To solve her hear...
Updated: 13 minutes ago
Hernando County wants taxpayer grant recipients to show their math

Hernando County wants taxpayer grant recipients to show their math

by barbara behrendtTimes Staff WriterBROOKSVILLE — Hernando County has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in recent years on taxpayer-funded grants to outside agencies and organizations, including $396,000 for the current year.Those dollars have ...
Updated: 18 minutes ago
Panic ensued after casino shuttle caught fire, survivor recalls

Panic ensued after casino shuttle caught fire, survivor recalls

By HOWARD ALTMANTimes Staff WriterPORT RICHEY — Before directing them to abandon the burning ship, the crew of The Island Lady casino shuttle moved passengers around the 72-foot wood-hulled vessel as fire began smouldering on both sides, one passenge...
Updated: 24 minutes ago
Arizona-based AFI Mortgage opens St. Petersburg branch

Arizona-based AFI Mortgage opens St. Petersburg branch

Times StaffAFI Mortgage, a subsidiary of an Arizona-based bank, is opening its first Florida locations in St. Petersburg and Lakeland. Its parent company, AmeriFirst Financial Inc., specializes in mortgages. "This Florida team is innovative, knowledg...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Thanks to Hurricane Irma, you need a boat to get to Shell Key again

Thanks to Hurricane Irma, you need a boat to get to Shell Key again

By CRAIG PITTMANTimes Staff WriterAT THE SHELL KEY PRESERVE — From a boat puttering along in the water, the sandy beach seems to go on and on. Then, abruptly, it ends at a mass of tangled, overturned mangroves where a great blue heron sits on an expo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
St. Petersburg’s apartment boom is spreading west

St. Petersburg’s apartment boom is spreading west

By SUSAN TAYLOR MARTINTimes Senior CorrespondentST. PETERSBURG — Still more apartments are coming to St. Petersburg, this time to the Edge and Grand Central Districts just west of downtown.The new projects, all by out-of-state developers, will add mo...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Jan. 19

Re: Walking leads to shocking catalogue of trash | Jan. 12 column Bring back anti-littering campaignJust came back from the beautiful, clean city of Singapore, where there is a $1,000 fine, plus community service for littering. I think a presiden...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

Pope begs forgiveness for ‘irreparable harm’ from sex abuse

SANTIAGO, Chile — Pope Francis begged for forgiveness Tuesday for the "irreparable damage" done to children who were raped and molested by priests, opening his visit to Chile by diving head-first into a scandal that has greatly hurt the Catholic Chur...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

By WAVENEY ANN MOORETimes Staff WriterST. PETERSBURG — International artist Janet Echelman may have fulfilled her $75,000 feasibility contract with the city and previewed her billowing, parasol-inspired sculpture for Spa Beach, but for some, key ques...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Florida boy, 6, dies of rabies contracted from a bat

ORLANDO — A 6-year-old Florida boy has died from rabies he contracted after being scratched by an infected bat.The father of Ryker Roque told NBC that the boy died Sunday at an Orlando hospital.Father Henry Roque said he had found a sick bat, put it ...
Updated: 4 hours ago