The Voice of the Gem City

News November 9, 2021

Marcia Lane11:51 AM (0 minutes ago)
to marcia, me

This is Marcia Lane, your roving reporter.

Veterans Day is Thursday and it is a federal holiday. That means government offices, post offices and banks will be closed. It also means schools in Flagler, Putnam and St. Johns counties will be on holiday. Plans are underway for Veterans Day celebrations including a parade at 10 a.m. down St. Johns Avenue in Palatka.

What a difference a month makes. At a community forum on Putnam County schools Monday night Superintendent Rick Surrency expected questions on Covid-19. That was a non-issue with Surrency noting onf Monday only three students were out for testing positive for Covid-19. At the forum residents did want to talk about teacher shortages, plans for rebuilding schools and school safety. Surrency says updated survey figures show more people are on board with a proposed plan for consolidating and rebuilding schools. The district will seek state special facilities money in order to make it happen. Local taxpayers also will have to agree to tax themselves to pay for a $300 million bond issue. That vote will come up for a vote in November 2021.

Putnam County School Board holds a reorganization meeting at 2:30 p.m. today followed by their regular board meeting at 3:30 p.m. Superintendent Rick Surrency will be presenting a State of the District summary, going over what’s been happening throughout the Putnam district. This is the only school board meeting of November due to upcoming Thanksgiving holidays.

Several sunny days are predicted as Putnam, St. Johns and Flagler counties dry out from a wet, wet weekend. On the average about six inches of rain fell in each county as a nor’easter plus an extra-high king tide saturated the area. Flagler County is reporting some dune erosion and damage to some walkovers including Varn Park, Sea Colony and Bay Drive Park. Friday saw wind gusts of more than 40 mph and flooding over private sea walls and docks in Flagler. The Flagler Beach Pier was closed for inspection. St. Augustine still has some streets with water and damage assessment is ongoing. Coastal areas in St. Johns saw areas of heavy erosion with Ponte Vedra Beach once again experiencing damage to dunes. Weather predictions call for dry days until the weekend.

A big box store is reported coming to State Road 100 near the airport in Flagler County. Flagler Property Appraiser Jay Gardner released the information but would only say the developer is Matthew Development out of Melbourne Beach and “everyone in the county will be be happy about” the store. Gardner owns the property but won’t be involved in the development. He says a decision on the project is expected by the developer in December but first a rezoning process is underway including changing the property from agriculture zoning to industrial.

Theater is the thing this week in Palatka. On Wednesday River City Players open their production Death By Golf, a comedy-mystery with a special Champagne Opening Night at the Larimer Arts Center, 216 Reid St. Other performances are Thursday through Sunday and Nov. 18-20. You can buy tickets on line for $20 at or call 386-337-8852. 

On Sunday, Nov.14, musical theater returns to Palatka and so do some of the shows put on in past years by Palatka High School Musical Theatre program. Taking part will be current and former students of director Jim Pignato. The musical review is called All Together Now! and is part of an effort nationwide to help theaters get audiences back in the seats. Tickets are available at Ralph’s House of Flowers at 605 St. Johns Ave. or call them at 386-325-4734. In advance tickets are $15. At the door $20.

%d bloggers like this: