APRIL “GONE COASTAL”
SPRING MEANS RETURN OF SPANISH MACKEREL TO NORTH FLORIDA WATERS
Across Florida there are signs that spring has sprung, from the fine layer of yellow pollen coating everything in the north to folks returning to the water sans wetsuit in the south. Warmer water also means the return of Spanish mackerel, a feisty fish that migrates south when the water temperature dips below 70 and should be returning to north Florida waters right about now.
Spanish mackerel are easy to catch, making them a great target for kids and those new to the sport, but their aggressive fighting behavior when on the line also makes them exciting for seasoned veterans.
Interested in catching a Spanish mackerel or two? Spring and early summer are a great time to target these fish as they move north along the coast. They frequent near shore sandy and grassy areas, from bays to beaches and piers, but can also be caught farther offshore. Spanish mackerel typically follow baitfish, so look for areas where fish are jumping.
REMOVAL OF RECYCLING TRAILER AT COUNTY ROAD 347/STATE ROAD 24 INTERSECTION
A few folks who live just off the island and utilize this trailer have inquired as to why this trailer was removed. A call to County Coordinator Fred Moody this past Monday revealed that it was removed with no immediate intentions of replacing it as he claims there is not only ongoing dumping of TVs, couches and the like (we have all seen this illegal dumping) but also that the majority of the trailer contents are garbage, not recyclables. He suggested that those who want to recycle will have to bring them to the Bronson facility.
At this time the county is considering a possible other location for this recycling trailer and a specific day and times for recyclables to be collected with a county employee to supervise the collection.
Whether you plant by the Farmer’s Almanac or Rodale’s Organic Gardening, many are planting gardens of flowers, fruits and vegetables now. Donna Thalacker and companions plant to a different drummer. She plants for pollinators at the Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge headquarters each spring.
This year, she brought her Friends (of the Lower Suwannee & Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuges) to expand the garden envisioned by Deputy Manager Larry Woodward. For over two years, Woodward has wanted a larger garden with a water feature for the massive number of butterflies that are drawn to its nectar-filled plants. The volunteer crew of nine planted native flowering plants that pollinators are naturally drawn to: fire bush, blueberries, blanket flower, sparkle-berry, lantana, coastal sage and others.
The following are NOT recyclable in Levy County:
Mullet? Starfish? Stingray? The choice was theirs! Smiling faces, paint-slathered hands marked the day.
Kids of varying ages made imprints from a selection of fish molds, lent to the all-volunteer cast of teachers coordinated by Millie Chapell, by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Laboratory, and one freshly-caught mullet.
At the print table, kids cut out designs from sheets of foam rubber and attached them to cardboard. One child learned about the printing process when he made a stamp of his name and it came out backwards when he made a print.
The purpose of the Kids’ Art Table was to have fun making art and to expose kids to the Cedar Key Art Center’s 2014 Children’s Art Program. The program will be taught by Jessica Rothbard, a native of Cedar Key, now working as an art educator at Floral Avenue Elementary in Bartow, Polk County, Florida. She spent all of Saturday with Chapell’s volunteer team, which included mascot Sophia, helping the create fish prints and rubber stamps of their own design.
Saturday, the 50th year of the Celebration of the Arts Festival was held in Cedar Key and after a enjoying day of beautiful weather, the festival crowd, the artists gathered at the Cedar Key Arts Center for the Artist's Reception and Awards Ceremony. The winners were annouced in the Arts Center Sculpture Garden: Best of show, Best 2D, Best 3D and 4 Sponsored Awards of Excellence (including the Cedar Key Arts Center Award for Creativity), and 13 Awards of distinction.
Bob Goodlett, Best of Show
Cedar Key School students put more than one hundred percent of their efforts into not only educating the Old Florida Festival of the Arts visitors about precisely what and how to recycle but also in assuring that everything that could possibly be recycled was, indeed recycled.
Students alternated manning the recycling and trash area Saturday and Sunday under the direction of organizer Makayla Pope. Among the energetic lot were sophomore Noah Webster, pictured here, and freshman Noah Lynch. Webster, who dreams of himself in the world of computer technology after graduation, is devoted to the project and has been involved since his eighth grade year. Lynch, who wishes to enlist in the military and ultimately become a firefighter, is an experienced recycler, as well.
At the next Old Florida Festival of the Arts, the group aims to make the entire weekend event “zero waste / fully recyclable.” Such a goal will require all vendors to use fully recyclable cups, dishes, napkins, forks, spoons, etc. A lofty goal, for sure. If anyone can make that goal happen, it is our own Cedar Key School recycling zealots.