t’s a birthday weekend in St. Augustine as the Nation’s Oldest City celebrates the 500th anniversary of the birth of founder Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles. A wreath laying ceremony this morning, a special History on the Street Saunter this evening, a Menendez Birthday Paseo starting at 2;30 p.m. Saturday from the Visitors Information and a Noche de Festival gala dinner Saturday at the Fountain of Youth are scheduled. All weekend the Spanish Wine Festival will be going on.
In Palatka, plans for a revamped Blue Crab Festival continue. Palatka City Commissioners Thursday instructed city attorney Don Holmes to register the Palatka Blue Crab Festival name today. Palatka Young Professionals will be leading the festival although the exact name and dates haven’t been decided. The event will be during at least part of Memorial Day Weekend.
Palatka is declaring an amnesty period for trash pick-up as the city readies for the annual Azalea Festival March 2 and 3. From Feb. 18-28 residents can call the city to pick up extra yard trash, old furniture and other large items without having to pay an extra charge. No batteries or cars will be removed. Call 386-329-0105 to set up pick up.
Opponents of a new /expanded Captain’s BBQ restaurant at Bing’s Landing in Flagler County will gather at the public county park Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. They’re getting a jump on the planned protest at the Feb. 18 Flagler County Commission meeting where the controversial item is expected to come back up.
The mass wedding ceremony on the steps of the Flagler County Courthouse in Bunnell drew 16 couples Valentine’s Da including five couples renewing their wedding vows.
Plenty to do this weekend. At the Larimer Arts Center on Reid Street in Palatka tonight a concert and gallery opening combination. Chuck Hardwicke and Friends debut their new CD Good Friends and Cracker Tales while Eldon Lux from South Florida will be on hand with his paintings of the cowboy life. The reception is from 5:30 to 7 p.m. and is free. The concert is from 7 to 9 with a $5 donation suggested to benefit the Arts Council of Greater Palatka.
The 15th annual Bluegrass Festival continues today and Saturday at Rodeheaver Boys Ranch in Putnam County. Top name acts perform both days.
On Saturday the Palatka Art League hosts a Bearly Tea at the Tilghman House on River Street. Tea and scones are free from 10 am. to 2 p.m. For sale will be lots of teddy bears with proceeds going to tent the historic house for termites.
Dance away Saturday night at Beef O’Brady’s in Palatka when One Book One Putnam holds a 50s-60s dance and karaoke. No charge for the event that begins at 6 p.m. although donations go to keep the reading program going.
Enjoy a Patriotic Concert at the GFWC Woman’s Club of Palatka featuring the Navy Brass Band Southeast Saturday at 7 p.m. at the clubhouse on South 13th Street. Veterans will be honored. The concert is free.
St. Augustine lost Wolf’s Museum of Mystery on Charlotte Street late last year when Ali and Wolfgang Von Mertz moved their attraction to a former Methodist church building in Willings, N.Y. In St. Augustine the store featured the bedroom furniture of accused ax murderer Lizzie Borden, oddities including an iron lung and human skull cap and a live mermaid. They planned to convert the building in New York to museums and a theater. On Saturday the building and the couple’s pets, art and artifacts burned to the ground. The Von Mertzs were away when the fire occurred.
You can’t keep a good business down. Former South 2nd Street Treasures shop owners in Palatka have taken their store on the road. Alice Cooper and Suzanne Pickens are at Renninger’s Mount Dora Flea Market and Antique Center this weekend. Alice says packing the truck was “gonna be like a fat lady getting into a girdle!” Check it out at Booth 1112.
This is Marcia Lane, your Roving Reporter.