Community

In Hernando Beach, firehouse project strengthens community

The Eagle Mural final product. Photos by Diane Greenwell.

Since the county fire department took over fire rescue service to Hernando Beach earlier this year, much work has been completed inside and outside of the former volunteer fire station. On Aug. 4, 2017, the commission recognized the efforts of all those involved to clean-up the firehouse, while simultaneously building community connections.
Deputy Chief Kevin Carroll explained that a group of artists who offered to paint fire hydrants were recruited to paint murals on the bay doors of the firehouse.

Pine Island Beach temporarily closed to swimming

by Hernando County Government

(Brooksville, FL) The Florida Department of Health in Hernando County announces that Pine Island Beach, located at 10840 Pine Island Drive in Spring Hill, is currently closed to swimming due to high levels of bacteria. This is a common occurrence in many areas of Florida during the heavy summer rains. The water will be re-tested next week and an announcement will be made when the beach re-opens for swimming.

Learn more about beach closures at www.floridahealth.gov/ environmental-health/beach- water-quality/index.html.

Richloam General Store aims for designation on the National Register of Historic Places

The Board of County Commissioners received a letter from Ruben A. Acosta, Florida Department of State, Bureau of Historic Preservation, informing the county of the Richloam General Store’s nomination for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.

The nomination proposal will be in front of a review board on Thurs. Aug. 10. If the board finds that the property meets the criteria, then a formal nomination will be submitted to the Keeper of the National Register in Washington D.C. for a final decision.

Members of K-9 Partners for Patriots help Congress see benefits of service dogs

Mary Peter and Ron Flaville with K-9 Partners for Patriots, Inc. in Brooksville attended a conference in Washington D.C. last month. Held by the Association of Service Dog Providers for Military Veterans, the meeting took place July 17-20.

Peter and Flaville had several purposes in attending the meeting.

“We wanted to identify service dog issues with other veteran service organizations in order to share ‘best practices’ and come up with solutions to those problems,” Ms. Peter states.

Who built it? Artist Lewis Watkins of Brooksville

Sculpture by Lewis Watkins at the West Hernando Library

Lewis Boone Watkins was an accomplished artist from Brooksville. Internationally, his artwork is part of permanent collections in the National Museum in Santiago, Chile and the Vatican Museum in Italy. Nationwide his work is displayed at the West Virginia Fine Arts and Cultural Center, John Davis Fine Arts Center in West Virginia, Leslie Stephens Fine Arts Center in Alabama, Florida State Museum, in the State Capitols of Florida, West Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, Kansas and Tennessee, not to mention numerous other private, corporate college and university collections.

Little beetles can cause big problems

by Dr. William Lester, UF/IFAS Extension Hernando County

Adult sixspined ips, Ips calligraphus (Germar). Photograph by David T. Almquist, University of Florida.

If you drive around Hernando County you will notice quite a few dead pine trees. This is because we have had an outbreak of Ips pine engraver beetles this spring and summer. This beetle pest occurrence isn’t nearly as bad as the southern pine bark beetle, which can cause major losses of pine trees across the entire Southeast US; but if you are the one suffering the loss and expense of removing a dead pine tree, this is little comfort. The main areas in our county that have been affected are Spring Hill, WeekiWachee, areas west of US 19 and along Cortez Blvd.

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