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Gary Miller's Outdoor Truths Ministry, Jan. 30, 2023

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CF invites future college students
to Preview Day - Feb. 28, March 2 or 9


By Lisa McGinnes | College of Central Florida
Manager of Marketing and Public Relations
Published Jan. 30, 2023 at 4:12 p.m.
     OCALA —
The College of Central Florida invites anyone thinking about college to attend an upcoming Preview Day event: Ocala Campus on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 5-7 p.m.; Jack Wilkinson Levy Campus on Thursday, March 2, 10 a.m-1 p.m.; or Wilton Simpson Citrus Campus on Thursday, March 9, 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

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     Preview Day is a chance for anyone considering college to find out everything CF has to offer – for high school students to retirees and everyone in between. At CF’s largest event of the year, representatives from admissions, financial aid, student services, clubs and organizations will help attendees plan their successful college experience.
      “Preview Day is an opportunity for students and their families to get answers to all their questions about college,” said Dr. Raphel Robinson, director of Admissions and Student Recruitment. “CF is a college for everyone, and we’re committed to providing a supportive, high-quality learning environment where all individuals can excel.”
     The $30 application fee is waived for anyone who applies at Preview Day. Attendees who complete a survey will get a CF T-shirt and will be entered to win free tuition for one 3-credit undergraduate class at the in-state tuition rate.
     For more details, CLICK HERE.

 


Sign and blinking lights set to save lives
School Board member gets project done

Exclusively first published
on HardisonInk.com

warning sign
This solar-powered pedestrian sign shows the driveway for the practice field is 400 feet ahead. The light will be blinking when practices are scheduled, thanks to the Florida Department of Transportation creating a program for the warning signal.

Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © Jan. 28, 2023 at 3:12 p.m.
Updated Jan. 29, 2023 at 10:12 a.m.
All Rights Reserved 
     LEVY COUNTY –
Student athletes who attend Cedar Key School and are members of the baseball, softball and track teams, as well as their coaches, classmates, friends and family members will be safer --  thanks to a Levy County School Board member and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT).

Warning Lights
This Sept. 26, 2022 photo shows part of the track and field, and the storage area for equipment at the practice area for Cedar Key School athletes. The picture was taken closer to when the story was anticipated to be published. The story was held until the FDOT installation was functioning as intended.

Warning Lights
The baseball field is equipped with lights for playing or practicing at night.

Warning Lights
The Dollar General Store as seen from the field is shown to be in relatively close proximity to the sports field. During practice and games, some people cross State Road 24 to buy things from that store. Another traffic safety concern related to this sports field next to SR 24 is that the speed limit there is 55 m.p.h. and there are vehicles entering and exiting that major throughfare from the driveway leading to the field.

 

     Tammy Boyle was elected as the Levy County School Board member for District 4 in 2020.
     In 2021, Boyle started working with the FDOT to have a sign placed on State Road 24 to show the practice field on SR 24 between the unincorporated area known as Rosewood and the unincorporated area known as Sumner, across the street from the Dollar General store, which is located at 7090 SR 24, Cedar Key (This is the address even though it is not on the island).
     She felt the activity at the field merited warning passing motorists about the occasional added traffic entering SR 24 there.
     Eventually, she succeeded in having the FDOT place a sign on either side of SR 24 as the drivers approached the field. Then she persuaded the FDOT to add blinking light on the signs to show motorists on that state road of the potential danger of cars or pedestrians in the area – either crossing SR 24 or entering the field from the road, or entering the road from the field.
     The FDOT put a switch on the signs to allow for the lights to be turned on and off during sports practice or games at the off-island ballfield and track.
     Boyle was unable to find a person to turn the switch on and off, after she spoke with Levy County School Board Attorney Dell Graham in 2022, who said the School Board should not accept that responsibility, because that would create liability in the event of a crash related to the lights being on or off, Boyle said.
     Boyle went to the Cedar Key City Commission to see if that body of municipal leaders could help in any way.
     Boyle spoke with the elected city leaders in Cedar Key. Vice Mayor Sue Colson took the lead from the city in trying to persuade the School Board to be more involved with the job of turning on the light when it needed to be lit, after the City Commission noted it lacked authority on that field of play.
     The ballfield and track are well off of the Cedar Key island city limits, and hence that part of unincorporated Levy County is out of the jurisdiction of the Cedar Key City Commission.
     In an Oct. 5, 2022, letter, nonetheless, Cedar Key Vice Mayor Colson noted for Superintendent of Schools Chris Cowart, as well as for School Board members -- Chairman Ashley Clemenzi (Dist. 3), Vice Chairman Brad Etheridge (Dist. 5), and School Board members Cameron Asbell (Dist. 1), Paige Brookins (Dist. 2) and Boyle (Dist. 4), information about the signs and lights, as well as the outcome from the Cedar Key City Commission meeting, where it determined the field and nearby traffic safety was not something it could be involved with.
     Levy County School Board Member Boyle approached the FDOT with another request for help.
     After some work by FDOT traffic engineers, the problem with having a person to turn on and off the blinking caution lights was solved.
     On Jan. 28, Boyle noted for HardisonInk.com that it was during the previous week when the FDOT installed a programmed panel, which makes it so the lights will flash late in the afternoons until after dark -- only during the dates when the CKS baseball, softball, and the track and field seasons require sports activity at the field. 
     “It's a positive ending and I'm thrilled,” Boyle noted for HardisonInk.com in regard to the now-functional sign and lights.

 


CKS Announces 2023 Homecoming Court
CKS 2023 Homecoming Court
The children shown above have been chosen to represent each class on Cedar Key School's 2022-2023 Homecoming Court. The court consists of Kindergarten Representatives: Dominic Lamberson and Scarlett Rowland; 9th Grade Representatives: Brodie Gill and Morgan Winfield; 10th Grade Representatives: William Stephenson (not pictured) and Karlie Bailey; 11th Grade Representatives: Connor Kaim and Alyssa McCain; Queen Court Contestants: Allie Collins, Audrey Collins, Kendall Bailey, Gabriella Miranda, Haiden Simpson, and Megan McCain; King Court Contestants: Christopher Neal, Blake Wynans, Alessio Di Bari, Jyri Jackson (not pictured), and Alexander Topping (not pictured); The Homecoming King and Queen will be announced Jan. 27 during halftime of the CKS Boys Varsity Basketball, where they will face the boys’ varsity team from Saint John Lutheran School of Ocala.
Published Jan. 23, 2023 at 6:12 a.m.

Information and Photo Provided by Jessica Crosby, CKS Student Government Sponsor

 


Firehouse Subs donates Jaws of Life
FDOT gives to Gilchrist County

Gilchrist County Commission
Gilchrist County Fire Chief James Campbell speaks to the Gilchrist County Commission on Jan. 19 about Hurst brand of equipment anticipated for delivery in March. This equipment known as ‘Jaws of Life’ because it helps extricate victims from vehicle crashes more quickly than crowbars or manual methods from years past.

Story and Photos
By Jeff M. Hardison © Jan. 20, 2023 at 7:12 p.m.
     TRENTON –
After its almost hourlong workshop related to Land Development Regulations (LDR), the four members of the Gilchrist County Commission present for the Thursday evening (Jan. 19) meeting, voted 4-0 to accept a grant from Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.


Gilchrist County Commission
Gilchrist County Administrator Bobby Crosby (left) and Gilchrist County Attorney David M. ‘Duke’ Lang Jr. provide significant insight to help the County Commission perform legislative actions that affect residents and visitors.

     Gilchrist County Commissioner Gilchrist County Commissioner Kenrick Thomas (Dist. 5) was absent from the first 2023 meeting of the Gilchrist County Board of County Commissioners. However, Gilchrist County Commissioner Sharon Akins Langford (Dist. 1), Commission Chairman William “Bill” Martin (Dist. 2), Gilchrist, County Commissioner Tommy Langford and (Dist. 4) County Commission Vice Chairman Darrell Smith (Dist. 3) moved forward with all of the local legislative actions put before them that day.
     Not only did they vote 4-0 to accept the grant from Firehouse Subs, but another 4-0 vote accepted a $460,000 addition to a previous grant from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to equal a total $3.960 million worth of funds for a road project on Gilchrist County Road 232.


Firehouse Subs
Gilchrist County Commission
Equipment donated to fire departments by the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation are marked with this logo.

     Gilchrist County Fire Chief James Campbell and Gilchrist County Emergency Management Director Ralph smith were sent a note earlier that the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Board of Directors has awarded the County of Gilchrist Board of County Commissioners, on behalf of Gilchrist County Fire Rescue in Bell, the requested Hurst Cutter, Spreader, Ram and Accessories valued at up to $37,575.
     Chief Campbell said the equipment was built to order for the needs of the GCFR. This equipment is submersible, he added, where the current equipment is not.
     The chief said he expects a March presentation from the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation to GCFR, and he anticipates the press being invited to cover the event.
     As part of the 4-0 vote, the motion included that the fire department was donating an old jacket and an old helmet, that had been scheduled to be thrown in the garbage, to give to the Firehouse Subs in Butler Plaza in Gainesville.
     Chief Campbell said Firehouse Subs has memorabilia from fire departments, and while this couple of pieces of old bunker gear is no longer fit for use or for sale or auction, it is fine and dandy to be hung on the wall.
     Firehouse Sub has donated to many fire departments, including Chiefland and Cedar Key. To see the 2017 story from HardisonInk.com where the donation was made to the Cedar Key Volunteer Fire Department, click HERE. There have been other stories, photos and videos of these donations published by HardisonInk.com in the past 12 years.


FDOT Grants, SCRAP and SCOP
Gilchrist County Commission
Gilchrist County Commissioners at the Jan. 19 meeting were (from left) Commissioner Tommy Langford, Chairman Bill Martin, Commissioner Sharon Langford and Vice Chairman Darrell Smith.

     Among the many actions at the meeting were the acceptance of FDOT grants and requests for help with transportation issues via the FDOT’s Small County Road Assistance Program (SCRAP) and the FDOT’s Small County Outreach Programs (SCOP).
     In regard to roads in Gilchrist County, this meeting included the 4-0 vote to accept $460,000 more that is needed for the Gilchrist County Road 232 widening and resurfacing for that road between U.S. Highway 129 and State Road 47.
     The total FDOT funding for that project is now $3.96 million, Gilchrist County Attorney David Miller “Duke” Lang Jr.
     Another 4-0 vote on the CR 232 project awarded the bid to Anderson Columbia Co. Inc. with its bid of $3,489,523.44. Other bidders on the project were Art Walker Construction, V.E. Whitehurst & Sons Inc., and Watson Construction Co. LLC.
     Attorney Lang noted there is a difference of $470,000 or so between the bid from Anderson Columbia and the FDOT funding. Commission Chairman Martin assured Attorney Lang that the whole project is funded with no county money needed to be added.
     In regard to SCRAP and SCOP the County Commission submitted its list of roads it seeks to have funded by the state after a 4-0 vote.


Engineering Firms
Gilchrist County Commission
County Clerk Todd Newton and Deputy County Clerk Kieran Bryan are seen moments before the start of the regular meeting on Jan. 19.


     A three-member committee comprised of Chairman Martin, County Clerk Todd Newton and County Manager Bobby Crosby reviewed the following six engineering firms to choose three with whom to start the process required to determine the county engineering company: Pitman Engineering; Locklear and Associates; CHW Professional Consultants; Universal Engineering; Chen Moore and Associates; and Menadier Engineering.
     The committee recommendations are:
• Pitman Engineering
• Locklear and Associates
• CHW Professional Consultants     
~

9-1-1 Grants
     County Manager Bobby Crosby, during his part of the meeting, spoke about grants for 9-1-1 maintenance and a new 9-1-1 recorder replacement.
     The State of Florida E911 Board awarded Gilchrist County 
Total Grant Awards: $63,713 to improve the E911 system serving the county.
     According to the Fall 2022 Cycle Rural County Reimbursement Grant Program terms and conditions, grant funds shall be provided on a cost reimbursement basis.
     Of that funding, $31,232.48 is for routine maintenance. The other $32,481.15 is for a 9-1-1 recorder replacement, Crosby said. Every 9-1-1 call is recorded, and those recorders wear out. This will cover the replacement of that recorder, he said.
     The new recorder, he said, is at a discounted cost through a state bid method.
     The County Commission gave a 4-0 vote of approval to accept both grants.


Agricultural Interests
     At the end of the workshop for Land Development Regulations, a Gilchrist County resident complained about development of five-acre lots.
     It was difficult to understand much more than he did not think mowing five acres was enjoyable for landowners. He seemed to complain that the county was not doing enough to encourage the retention of agricultural ventures in Gilchrist County.
     Commission Vice Chairman Smith said he has spoken with farmers and others in that profession. There is a cost-per-acre breaking point where the crop is not sustainable if it does not bring in a profit. Commissioner Sharon Langford said the cost of fuel, fertilizer, seed and other necessary resources for farmers has increased.
     It was mentioned, too, that some farmers are retiring while their children and grandchildren are not interested in continuing the profession that provides food.
     Vice chairman Smith said he is receptive to anyone with ideas regarding protection of a rural setting with farms and ranches. He intimated there is a challenge with the government versus an individual’s property rights. If a farmer wants to sell to some non-ag developer, then the county government must allow what is accepted as proper for various forms of zoning.
     The short conversation showed no inclination that the Gilchrist County government is going to do anything to promote farming and ranching over other development, such as building residential subdivisions, more roads, restaurants, gas stations, or convenience stores and the like.

 


AdChristianpress2
First Published Feb. 1, 2011 at 8 a.m.
     On Feb. 1, 2011, HardisonInk.com came into existence on the Internet. On All Saints Day - Nov. 1, 2011, The Christian Press section on The Life Page of HardisonInk.com started, which was about nine months after the start of the daily news website. The name "The Christian Press" was derived from an encounter a decade earlier in 2001 in St. Petersburg, when and where a man mentioned to a journalist that this particular journalist must work for "The Christian Press." Although the presumption by the man about that journalist was incorrect and misplaced, the name sounded good. And the journalist said that if he could work for The Christian Press, then that certainly would be the publication to serve.
     Since Nov. 1, 2011, The Christian Press section of this page has run daily devotionals from several individuals who contributed over the past years. There were two days in 2018 when the daily devotional did not run due to a journalist requiring emergency orthopedic surgery on broken bones in his left arm and wrist. That surgically added metal, though, makes that part of that arm even more able to withstand forces. Many daily devotionals are pulled from Strength for Service to God and Country (Whitmore & Stone © 1942; Renewed 1969 by Norman E. Nygaard; Second revised edition © 2002 Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, Providence House Publishers). The journalist who is the sole proprietor and owner of HardisonInk.com (Jeff M. Hardison) notes his appreciation for the use of those devotionals from that now-defunct publishing company, and for the many other contributors who have helped people over the past decade-plus now. Strength for Service to God and Country's daily devotionals include many from a time when the United States of America was a partner in a World War, both WWI and WWII. This journalist welcomes contributions of daily devotionals. Daily devotional authors are asked to please send only their original works to hardisonink@gmail.com. Americans are reminded that all religions, having no religion and or being a person who endorses anti-religion are all protected as part of the freedoms from government intervention, as are other benefits from being an American.

 


Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2023 at 9:12 a.m.

THE STRENGTH THAT COMES FROM GOD



Read Psalm 124

     It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect.
-- Psalm 18:32 (KJV)


     As never before, the world needs strength that binds us together in a full consciousness of victory. The apostle Paul speaks of that spirit when he says, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Likewise, the psalmist says, “It is God that girdeth me with strength.” Without that consciousness of the power of God in our lives we cannot but fail, but with it we rise to our full height.
     Yea, we rise to the height of the Man Christ Jesus, and go out to tackle the task of the day in the fullest assurance that we shall win a triumph in our own life over every impediment that stands in our way. Moreover, as never before do we need the awareness that God is binding us together with all others of like spirit for the winning of a victory for humankind. It is in that strength that we look to God today for courage and faith.
     To be sure, it is not always easy to recognize the presence of God and the perfect way of life. The clouds of doubt eclipse this vision at times, but in the strength of prayer and in that faith that was Christ’s, we see beyond these dark moments to the day of our deliverance. We look for that time of peace and victory through Him who is our eternal Strength. Our prayer, then, for the day is that we may sense God girding us with His power, and revealing to us a way of service and happiness.
     ETERNAL GOD, we look to Thee for Thy girding strength and for the revelation of the perfect way in this day of service. Enable us to maintain a calm and steady faith in ourselves because we believe that Thou art our Guide. We trust not in our own unaided judgment but look to Thee for that guidance which cometh from above. Make us strong in our attitude of trust; and in utmost simplicity may we cast ourselves on Thee. Amen.
The Rev. Dr. Thomas Raymond Niven (Sept. 5, 1894-Dec. 28, 1964)
First Presbyterian Church
Omaha, Nebraska
Strength for Service to God and Country
(Whitmore & Stone © 1942; Renewed 1969 by Norman E. Nygaard; Second revised edition © 2002 Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, Providence House Publishers)

 



Outdoor Truths Ministry

By Gary Miller © Jan. 30, 2023 at 8:12 a.m.

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     I get excited this time of year. The deer season is over but another season that involves deer is just around the corner. It’s the season to hunt antler sheds. If you don’t know, each year bucks shed their antlers and grow new ones. In my area they begin to drop off in February and they begin to grow them back almost immediately. During late February and into April, some of the most sought-after treasures are the antlers which are found lying along paths and in bedding areas. These make great decorations and even have a monetary value. The true pleasure, however, is just getting back out into the woods and finding these hidden jewels before the squirrels and other animals eat them up for their mineral value.
     In areas where large deer live, the discoveries can be impressive. Not only are these finds exciting for their immediate value, but they tell hunters just what bucks made it through last season’s gauntlet of arrows and bullets. They tell us what deer survived and what to expect the coming year. They tell us who will be emerging as the dominant leaders in the future. These will be the ones all hunters will be watching as the next season emerges.
     What goes for dominant deer also goes for dominant humans. There comes a time when the loudest voices and strongest influencers give way to the next generation of leaders. This goes for our political, military, family, and spiritual life. Even now, I can mention the names of some profound leaders to only one generation removed, and there is no immediate recognition. The spiritual patriarchs that once dominated the lives of so many people of faith, have lost their influence with the masses. What to remember however is this. The leaders who are still alive, are not losing their influence, they are just moving it to the next generation of leaders. I think of the retired military generals who are teaching the new military generals.
     I think of the retired politicians who are offering wisdom to the future leaders of our country. And I think of the spiritual giants who are spending their time with the emerging spiritual giants. While these influencers may have retired from being hands-on, they have not retired from imparting their knowledge, wisdom, and experience, to those who are now on the front lines. And when it comes to these things, they are only gained by time. And that’s something no present leader will ever be able to overtake from the past leaders whose shoes they are filling.

-- Gary Miller  gary@outdoortruths.org

     Gary Miller has written the Outdoor Truths articles for 20 years now. He also has written four books which include compilations of his articles and a father/son devotional. He speaks at wild-game dinners and men's events for churches and associations. Gary Miller's website is located at http://www.outdoortruths.org/.
 


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