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NEWS

  • NORFOLK, Va. - Frank Batten Sr., who built a communications empire that spanned newspapers and cable television and created The Weather Channel, died Thursday. He was 82.

    Batten, the retired chairman of privately held Landmark Communications and a former chairman of the board of The Associated Press, died in Norfolk after a prolonged illness, Landmark Vice Chairman Richard F. Barry III said.

    A visionary executive who earned a reputation for spotting media trends, Batten was at the forefront of development of cable television in the 1960s.

  • Perkins State Bank in Williston hosted a Sept. 11 commemoration on its lawn this morning to remember the terrorist attacks on our country in 2001. More than 2,800 people lost their lives in the attacks, including 343 firefighters, 23 New York police officers and 37 Port Authority police officers.

     

    More photos in next week's Pioneer. A slideshow will be posted later  on our Web site.

  • It’s been a long drought of many years since the Williston Red Devils have gotten the best of the Dixie County Bears in football. But that drought ended Friday night as the Red Devils beat the Bears in overtime 14-13.

    The Red Devils scored first and chose to kick the extra point to take a 14-7 lead. The Bears scored in one play, called a time out and went for two points for the win.

    The Red Devil defense stepped up and stuffed the Bears runningback for a five-yard loss, game over Red Devils win.

  • Would you pay $900 in handling fees if you were promised $10 million in return? Would you send $20 to cover paperwork if you were told you’d get $1 million within a week? Would you miss $10 if you knew you were getting a deluxe all-inclusive paid vacation at a five-star hotel?

    Sound too good to be true? It is and for a Williston woman, offers like this flood her mailbox every day and she wants to make sure that people DO look gift horses in the mouth.

    Janie Campbell (not her real name) is a 78-year-old widow living on a fixed income on the farm her father left her.

  • Start digging through the photo albums. The Williston Pioneer is looking for back-to-school photos for its August gallery.

    Submit your favorite photo by noon Aug. 21 for publication in our Aug. 27 edition. All submitted photos will be published.

    Photos may be e-mailed (minimum 150 resolution/200 is preferable) to editor@willistonpioneer.com or mailed/dropped by our office at 28 NW First Ave., Williston.

     

  • The men who serve in the Knights of Columbus take their work seriously. Not only do they strive to support their parish at Holy Family Catholic Church, but they stretch the arm of Christianity into the area to help others in need.

    Since its inception more than 25 years ago, the Knights have been continuous fund-raisers and supporters for several charities, families and causes, according to Jamie Barley, one of the charter members.

  • The Williston City Council awarded a long-term contract to its city manager at Tuesday’s evening meeting.

    Marcus Collins, whose tenure with the city began on Jan. 5, 2009, had been working on a one-year employment agreement designed to give Collins and the council time to evaluate each other and determine whether a longer-term agreement was in the interests of both parties.

  • The proposed property tax bills hitting mailboxes earlier this week will be joined today by Levy County’s notice of its fire, waste, road and emergency medical service assessment notices.

    While property owners may think they are getting hit with the double whammy of notices for proposed property taxes and proposed assessments, business owners are the ones most likely to raise their eyebrows and pick up the phone to call their county commissioner when they see the EMS assessment.

  • Friends of the Williston Public Library will hold its first book fair of the fall, Saturday, Sept. 5 in the City Hall Community Center located at the south end of Williston City Hall.

    The hours will be from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. A huge number of books and magazines will be available.

     Volunteers are needed to help set up on Thursday, Sept. 3 from 6 p.m. till about 8 p.m. The next morning, Friday, Sept. 4, volunteers will also be needed to complete the sorting and setting up and also on Saturday to help with the sale itself, from 8:30 a.m. till 1 p.m.

  • As students head back to school next week, the Levy County Health Department is preparing for potential widespread Novel H1N1 (Swine Flu) outbreaks as soon as school starts.

    “We know we’re going to have clusters of outbreaks when school starts next week,” said Barbara Locke, Levy County Health Department Administrator.

    “We’re preparing for the worst and hoping for the best,” Locke said. “We expect to see clusters of cases " maybe five to 10 at this school one week, and then another five to 10 at that school.”

  • There are nine areas of potential economic growth for Levy County.   

    John Adams, president and chief executive officer of Enterprise Florida, who was one of two key speakers at a Team Levy meeting on Aug. 13, said, “We’re trying to look over the horizon just a little bit to see where those target markets are.”   

  • Bringing wireless Internet to Levy County will provide a major boost to the economy, officials with the newly formed North Florida Broadband Authority say.

    “It’s a very large variable when it comes to attracting new businesses,” Pat Lien, project leader for NFBA, said.

    According Lien and other experts, many new businesses will turn away from areas unable to provide such services.

    But he also said broadband would increase opportunities for at-home businesses.

  • Levy County’s unemployment rate has broken a new barrier rising to 12.1 percent in July, a rise of 0.7 percent from June 2009. The number of individuals without jobs rose from 1,959 to 2,066 in Levy County.

    In contrast, Marion County’s rate stayed the same at 12.6 percent as did Citrus County at 11.9 percent.

  • Saturday, Sept. 5: A Car-Truck-Bike Show hosted by the Sons of AMVETS Squadron 88, Bronson (next to the Speedway on S.R. 24). Music is by DJ Jeff. Pulled pork plate ($6) or chicken leg quarters ($5) with sides are available. Pre-registration is $15, or day of show $20. Registration is open from 9 a.m. until noon. Awards presented at 2 p.m. Registration forms are available at Ace Hardware in Bronson or at Post 88.

  • Suwannee Valley Players will audition its upcoming production of Not a Creature Was Stirring ... not even a moose, a comedy written by Pat Cook.

    Editor JJ Garnes of the Herald Tribune makes sure to use the holiday to his own advantage, whether it be to expose a crooked mayor or sell a few more issues with just the right angle. And he thinks he finds it when he finds a letter from a small boy who “don’t want no more Christmases.”

  • An abandoned horse that was malnourished and unable to stand was euthanized Monday. The Levy County Sheriff’s Office reported that Deputy Ella Anderson was called to NE 154 Place and Martin Road near Bronson after witnesses spotted the horse in an area known for illegal dumping of trash and animal carcasses (wild hog and deer). Deputy Anderson summoned Morgan Silver, the President of Horse Protection Association of Florida, for expert advice and assistance.

  • The Williston Animal Group (WAG) will hold its first monthly adopt-a-thon on Saturday, Sept. 12 under the trees at the Winn Dixie parking lot, beginning at 10 a.m.

    Volunteers and foster parents will bring dogs that are ready to be adopted for you to play with and perhaps take home with you.

  • Lavoisier Denson is on a mission from God. The 28-year-old, whose roots are tied to the Williston area, wants to see other men, black, white and all colors in between, step up, be accountable, take responsibility and be men-real men, as dictated by the Holy Scriptures.

    Starting today (Thursday) and continuing through Saturday, Sept. 5, Denson’s church, Miracle Vision, will host a men’s conference focusing on the theme “Men Unified in One Spirit”.

  • .North Chiefland Church of God

    Attention all area pastors, youth groups, bands and drama teams. You are invited to be a part of ENCOUNTERFEST 2009: Sept. 3-5 starting at 6:30 p.m. at the North Chiefland Church of God.

    More than your average “Youth Revival”, this event will be an area wide, multi-church meeting. Youth groups from around the area will be performing skits, mimes, and drama shorts each night.

    The music will be up-beat and fresh featuring our live band, “Radio Emprise” from Priscilla Baptist Church in Bell.

  • Nature Coast Hospital is under new management and change is already taking place.

    Partners Healthcare Development Inc. (PHD) out of Overland Park, Kan. became the new management group for the hospital Sept. 1, according to spokesman Nathan Adams, vice president of communication and government affairs.

    Read the story in this week's Pioneer.