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MILESTONES

Myrtle M. Christopher was born March 15, 1902, in White County, Ind. She moved to Holiday in 1972 and to Inverness in 1983. Mrs. Christopher celebrated her 100th birthday on March 16 at New Horizons Senior Citizens' Home in Inverness, surrounded by nieces and nephews, friends and fellow residents. Besides Florida, they traveled from Canada, Maine, and Indiana to salute this centenarian.

One of nine children, Christopher has outlived all of her siblings. In 1921 she married Clyde Hudgens who died in 1941. In 1947 she married Walter Christopher, who died in 1972. While she never had children, she happily shared her life with a multitude of nieces and nephews.

On March 16, many memories were shared by those in attendance, which included several grandnieces and grandnephews.

Among Mrs. Christopher's passions in life is fishing. Niece Carol Elston, 67, recalled how "she loved to fish" even after she once fell out of a boat.

"We all love her dearly," said Elston.

Another niece, Inverness resident Peg Fritz, 68, visits Christopher to "torment her every once in a while." While doubtful about that intention, it drew a laugh from those present.

Joe Ramsey, 49, is a grandnephew who recalls Mrs. Christopher's cooking prowess.

"She made the best homemade noodles," recalled Ramsey. "Whenever I knew I was visiting her, I always asked for them."

Ramsey's two daughters Nicole Ramsey, 20, and Tarrah Ramsey, 18, were also here.

"It's awesome," said Tarrah Ramsey when asked about Mrs. Christopher achieving 100 years. "I used to hang out with her when I used to come to visit. That's why I brought (Keith Williams, a friend) with me to meet her."

Other sweet memories about Mrs. Christopher included her Christmas fudge and her divinity fudge that "was out of this world."

Inverness Mayor Joyce Rogers presented a proclamation, the staff provided a birthday cake and ice cream, and Bill Elston serenaded Mrs. Christopher with his mouth organ. In all, 23 family members were present.

On March 17, Lester Baverstock turned 102. He was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where, as he

recalls, he lived across the street from a fire station. His favorite toy was a handmade red wagon which he would bring over to the fire station, which was also his favorite place to play. Those years probably influenced his decision later to trade in that red wagon for a real firetruck when he became a firefighter for the New York City Fire Department after serving three years in the Army.

Baverstock joined a hook and ladder company in his mid-20s and remained for more than 30 years. The last 20 years he were spent as an officer, and was a lieutenant upon retiring.

He was married to his wife, Annette, for 63 years. The couple never had children.

On March 15, members of the Connell Heights Volunteer Fire Department brought a firetruck and gifts to Brentwood to help Baverstock celebrate his milestone birthday. Current members of his former engine house sent along photos of the house, an FDNY cap, a long-sleeved shirt with its emblem, and a photo of the current group of firefighters at ground zero.

He was also joined by his two nephews, Bill Duggan and Russ Duggan, and their families.

PEOPLE

Best wishes for Good Hope

Dr. V. Rao, center, of the Cancer and Blood Disease Center, Lecanto, presented a check to Marje Van Tassell, right, representing the Sportsman's Sertoma, and Wendy Hapner, director of Hospice's Camp Good Hope. Rao is a major medical sponsor of the Charity Horse Show held Saturday at Pine Ridge Equestrian Center in Beverly Hills. Proceeds of this event will benefit Camp Good Hope.

CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS

The Friends of the Dunnellon Public Library welcomed Janet Privett of Lake Wales to its Author Coffee on March 12. An audience of about 50 friends and book lovers sat entranced as Privett provided a fast paced talk about her first novel, Power of Love, which is characterized as a paranormal romantic adventure set in present-day Florida and traveling back 2,000 years. Additionally, she answered questions and signed books.

She shared how the idea of the book came about and her process in writing it and getting it published. Like the character Dawn in her book, Privett is a professional belly dancer, motivational speaker, archaeology buff, spokesperson for an environmental organization and student of New Age philosophy.

The Realtors Association of Citrus County recently presented a check for $7,100 to the local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity. The check was presented to Habitat president Barbara Rezac by Bob Hedrick, Realtors Associate president, and Erna Stanton, Board of Realtors executive officer.

The Realtors have raised almost $25,000 for Habitat through an annual golf tournament held the past six years. For the past four years it has been led by Joy Bily and Florence Kaufman.

Not only are the Realtors the largest cash contributor to Habitat but they have lent their expertise in other ways by serving on the board of directors and in consulting. Gene Wade is on the board of directors.

Erna Stanton said that "putting people in homes is a way of giving back. We got involved because it was affordable housing and a good cause".

A beautiful day on March 9 added the final touch to chairwoman Joan Bucher's plans for the successful Citrus Springs Memorial Library's Spring Book Sale. The sale began shortly after members of the Citrus Springs Boy Scout Troop 462 raised the flag in a ceremony.

Members of the Troop, including Joey Black, David Willmott, Garrett Skelton, Alex and Michael Yerman, Jeff Stees and Sean Seibert, along with Jenny and Susan Stees, representing Girl Scout Troop 635, helped with the setup of the book sale, hauling boxes and boxes of books from the storage shed to the library and the library grounds, which housed the paperbacks.

Assisting the young people were Troop 462's leaders Anita and James Black, Mike Seibert, Jay Stees, Mark Yerman and James Skelton.

Mrs. Bucher would like to thank Boy Scout Troop 462 and Girl Scout Troop 635 for all their help, as well as library volunteers Loretta Walek, Carolyn Inniss, Joan McCandlish, Lorna Eastman, Mary Moody, Lila Volk, Virginia Donahue, Maggie Zarella, Margaret Backman, Hilda Weaver, Madge Ashley, Donette Bergeson and Ruth Lemke.

All proceeds from the sale go toward funding the library at 1826 W CountryClub Drive in Citrus Springs.

The Key Training Center will hold a Community Appreciation Cookout on April 6 at its Lecanto Campus, behind the Thrift Store/Garden Center off State Road 44. Key Center supporters, clients with their family/guardians and the public are invited to join in a fun-filled day of entertainment and food.

Waycross Express will make a special reunion performance with two one-hour shows at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. While keeping a distinct country style, Waycross Express entertains audiences with a mix of rock 'n' roll, blues and today's popular tunes.

Complimentary barbecue/fried chicken and hot dogs with all the fixings will be served from 10:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., while provisions last. Servers include the Key Center's board of directors and senior staff members who are eager to meet and interact one-on-one with supporters and friends.

Guided tours of a group home, employee opportunity workshop, Key Pine Village, Thrift Store, Garden Center and WYKE-TV will be available at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Key Center clients understand the tremendous support they receive from the community during Run for the Money fundraising events that take place each July. A unique treat is planned for audience members from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., as client's share their appreciation.

Softball fans will enjoy cheering inspirational games starting at 9 a.m. featuring the Key Center's A & B teams vs. the Citrus County Sheriff's Almost All-Stars. The games will take place on the newly renovated Tidwell Field commencing with a dedication of the ballpark to be named Dean Hopkins Park.

The Key Training Center provides daily living and social skills, job training, life-sustaining care and residential services to nearly 260 clients with mental retardation and other developmental disabilities in Citrus County. For more information, call the Key Center Foundation at (352) 564-1440.

RECREATION

Crystal River Flotilla 15-1, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will hold the first class of its popular "Boating Skills & Seamanship Course" beginning April 16 and ending May 21. Classes will meet twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Crystal River State Buffer Zone Building, 3266 N Sailboat Road, Crystal River.

The course consists of choosing a boat; equipment for boats; trailering a boat; boat handling and piloting; coastal and inland waterways navigation; powering a boat; weather and boating; and use of VHF radios. Detailed information concerning the course contents may be seen on the Flotilla Web page at http://www.uscgaux/0701501.

Those completing the course are awarded a certificate of completion which will qualify them for a Florida boat operators license. There is a $30 book fee. Registration may be made by contacting Al Alborano at 637-7293 or e-mail him at animalfx2.com.

CITRUS KIDS

A trio of entertainers

Hannah Ovitt, Cheri Grunst and Hanna Tobin, mem

bers of the Inverness Boys & Girls Club, recently entertained the residents of New Horizons Nursing Home.

Top kids

Kristin Wubbel, unit director of the Inverness Boys & Girls Club, is proud to announce Devonte White, Pleasant Grove Elementary fourth-grader, and Nadia Fernette, Inverness Primary second-grader, as Youths of the Month of February. Devonte demonstrates leadership and honesty. Nadia is always very helpful and well-mannered.

CITRUS KIDS

Cub Scout Pack 450 has been busy recently. Members designed and made pinewood derby cars with the help of church Deacon Bill Kavouras, who cut out the cars with a saw for the boys. The boys then put their creativity to work and sanded, painted and shaped their cars to look like great racers.

On Feb. 9 the group held its local pack derby with winners as follows.

+ Tigers: first place Josh Franklin, second place Anthony Clark, third place Nathan Godwin.

+ Wolves/Bears: first place Justin Hedge, second place Thomas Greenman, third place Andrew William.

+ Webelos: first place Aaron Larsh and second place Chris Day.

On Feb. 16 the winners competed in the district wide derby at Crystal River Mall. While they did not win, they made a good showing.

On Feb. 23 the group held its Blue and Gold dinner to celebrate Scouting's birthday.

Many awards were given out.

Pack 450 meets from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays at Faith Lutheran Church in Lecanto. All boys in grades 1 through 5 are welcome to join, no matter where they live in Citrus County. For more information, call Chris Day 628-7941.

The Beverly Hills Woman's Club is accepting applications from Lecanto High School seniors for its annual scholarship. The amount of the scholarship is $500.

A panel from the Beverly Hills Club will choose the winner and the scholarship will be presented at the club's May luncheon to be held May 21 at Oyster's Restaurant.

For information, call Lucy Murphy at 527-4239.

Home is School is a support group for home-schooling families. It recently held its first annual Valentines dance. Dressed for the occasion, home-schooled students of all ages enjoyed music, dancing, crafts and food.

+ + +

Author Janet Privett of Lake Wales appeared at the March 12 Author Coffee sponsored by the Friends of the Dunnellon Public Library.

Myrtle Christopher, a resident of New Horizons in Inverness, recently celebrated her 100th birthday with family and friends. A serenade on a mouth organ by Bill Elston brought a round of applause.

Lester Baverstock turned 102 on March 17. On March 15, members of the Connell Heights Volunteer Fire Department were on hand to help the former New York City firefighter celebrate this milestone. Fred Beckner, center, hands off photos sent from Baverstock's former NYC firehouse while Clarence Redd talks to the audience at Brentwood Retirement Community about Baverstock's 30 years as a firefighter.

Dr. V. Rao, center, of the Cancer and Blood Disease Center, Lecanto, presented a check to Marje Van Tassell, right, representing the Sportsman's Sertoma, and Wendy Hapner, director of Hospice's Camp Good Hope. Rao is a major medical sponsor of the Charity Horse Show held Saturday at Pine Ridge Equestrian Center in Beverly Hills. Proceeds of this event will benefit Camp Good Hope.

Hannah Ovitt, Cheri Grunst and Hanna Tobin, mem

bers of the Inverness Boys & Girls Club, recently entertained the residents of New Horizons Nursing Home.

Kristin Wubbel, unit director of the Inverness Boys & Girls Club, is proud to announce Devonte White, Pleasant Grove Elementary fourth-grader, and Nadia Fernette, Inverness Primary second-grader, as Youths of the Month of February. Devonte demonstrates leadership and honesty. Nadia is always very helpful and well-mannered.

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