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By this evening Palatka should have a new city manager. Commissioners will meet at 3:45 p.m. this afternoon at City Hall to question candidates and make a decision. Candidates include interim city manager Lee Garner; Adam Mengal, current planning director in Flagler County and former Palatka planning director; West Liberty, Iowa city manager Scott McNaul; York County, S.C. county manager William Shanahan and Roosevelt City, Utah city manager Ryan Snow. All but Snow, who was dealing with business for his city, were at a public meet-and-greet Thursday. Today’s meeting also is open to the public.
Residents opposed to a 24-hour-a-day Daily’s gas station on State Road 13 made their case against the business to St Johns County’s planning and zoning committee at a public meeting Thursday. However it will be up to the county commission to make the final decision about the gas station near Fruit Cove Estates. The 24-pump gas station includes a convenience store and car wash on an eight-acre parcel that is in the midst of residences.
Political season is here with candidates announcing and some holding campaign kick-offs. On Wednesday it was Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly’s turn. He made his announcement for a second term at a Republican Party rally. Staly has proved a popular sheriff and crime is down significantly. When he ran in 2016 he was one of nine candidates in a bitterly fought election. In Palatka on Tuesday Superintendent of Putnam Schools Rick Surrency held his campaign reception.
On the crime scene a 16-year-old has been arrested on six counts of felony burglaries or attempted burglaries in the P section of Palm Coast. A couple who daily reviews their surveillance tapes called the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office to report someone attempted to get in their two cars. While deputies were at the couple’s house a report of a burglary in the area was received. Deputies got a close look at the alleged burglar through surveillance tape from a third house and he was recognized as having been questioned in another case. He wasn’t at home but his mother brought him to the station later. According to deputies, he was wearing the same gym shorts they had seen in the videos.
In St. Augustine you can fight cancer by taking part in the Pink up the Pace 5k beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Visitor Information Center. Celebrate the founding of Castillo de San Marcos on Saturday with re-enactors and living history guides. The 10th annual St. Augustine Independent Restaurant Association food and wine festival is Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. at River House and Sunday it’s the Hollywood Concert Orchestra’s presentation of Night at the Oscars, part of the EMMA series at Lewis Auditorium. Saturday and Sunday enjoy the 12th annual Datil Pepper Festival at the University of Florida’s St. Johns County IFAS Extension facility. The event is free.
In Flagler County it’s the Classic Nashville Roadshow at Flagler Auditorium in Palm Coast Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Classic country music with a live band, comedy and stories of country music’s greats. On Sunday it’s a Country Fest at Flagler County Fairgrounds in Bunnell from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In Palatka Azalea City Cruisers holds their annual giant car show on the banks of the St. Johns River Saturday. The Women’s Christian Expo is at Dunn’s Creek Baptist Church in San Mateo from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. St. James United Methodist Church continues hosting their $5 breakfast at the church fellowship hall Saturday from 7 to 10 a.m. Rotary Club of Crescent City hosts their annual Wine and Swine fundraiser from 6 to 11 p.m. Saturday. Enjoy not one but two local wine festivals in Putnam County. On Saturday Log Cabin Winery in Satsuma offers an Octoberfest celebration at their winery on Country Road 309. On Saturday and Sunday Tangled Oaks Winery hosts their annual wine festival at their facility on State Road 100 in Grandin.
This is Marcia Lane, your roving reporter.