Column and Photos

By Myrtice Scabarozi © May 20, 2015 @ 8:07 a.m.
     LEVY COUNTY -- The Log Cabin Quilters met Thursday (May 14) at the Levy County Quilt Museum -- 11050 N.W. 10th Ave. (near Levyville, kind of on the way to Judson from U.S. Alt. 27).

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     Evelyn brought in the finished baby quilt that she was working on last week. She keeps us busy keeping her in small quilt projects.   
     Correctional Officer Greg and the boys who are participating in the Lancaster Correctional Institution's Youthful Offender Program were out keeping our yard looking great. They transplanted the three small peach trees that Alice Mae had rooted. We were lucky enough to receive rain that will help the trees take root. Thanks LCI, Greg and all of the youthful offenders who are working at becoming better members of society. Maybe we’ll have peaches in a few years.
    Ann is making progress with the long arm. She brought out her mom’s chalk dust block. (It looks a lot like the old erasers we used on chalk boards.) It sounds simple. Just put the template where you want the quilting stitch to be, pat the template with the chalk block, remove the template and steer the sewing/quilting machine to stitch the chalk line. The rest of us need a little more time watching Ann before we try it for ourselves. The rocking chairs are turned so we watch her.
    Come out and join us sometime.
Hand quilting helps make the the animals in this baby quilt really stand out.

Sunbeams and dinosaurs
power southern drone flights

Dragonfly Won reaches new heights

This four-minute video includes narration. This was the best set of flights at one place so far.

Story and Video

By Jeff M. Hardison © May 19, 2015
     INGLIS – The “S” drone flight of the N-E-W-S series was completed Monday afternoon (May 18) by flights in Inglis from Central Park, the park next to Inglis Town Hall.

      The "N" was north and it was in Cross City. The "E" was east and it was in Williston. The "W" was west and it was Cedar Key.
     Inglis Mayor Drinda Merritt suggested the park as an option for the flights, when she was asked without warning during a surprise visit to Town Hall. After completing the mission, Inglis Town Councilman Andrew White visited with the pilot on the basketball court, discussing White’s business interest in the area and other matters.
     There is some Jeep Compass windshield time between the Code Orange Office of Headquarters and Central Park in Inglis. And being alone on that 45-minute drive, there was time for the drone operator to name the vehicle, having given the drone-naming exercise some thought earlier.
     This is the third drone in the series. The first two crashed so often and so dramatically and hard, that they need to be repaired before they will fly again. The first two little airships were never named.
     This drone is named Dragonfly Won. Currently, there are no nighttime flight plans for the little airship, although it has tiny beacon lights on it to indicate certain conditions. There was a time when Firefly or Lightning Bug had potential to be part of its name.
     The drone measures about four-inches by four-inches.
     It is Dragonfly Won rather than “One” because it is the third flying machine with a camera to be tried, and while it is not the first it has won the title of having recorded the most video time from the air.
     After deciding the name, the Jeep-driving drone operator thought about the electricity that powers the machine. That electricity was created by other machines that use oil, coal, natural gas or nuclear power.
     While the Jeep driver’s mind may have gone back to before the big bang and the “sudden” appearance of space, matter and time, or the creation of all those things by God, to shorten this story about those thoughts, we’ll leap ahead to the existence of the sun that shines on planet Earth.
     We are also skipping the part about the weight of the first elements, the time when heavier elements came to exist, and how we are all stardust – beyond the simplest elements in our bodies.
     Most of the energy for the electricity that powers the four little motors of this drone came from sunbeams. That energy was transformed into oil by the plants that were eaten by dinosaurs. Those plants use photosynthesis to convert sunlight into simple sugars and other matter.
     Meat-eating dinosaurs ate the vegetation-eating dinosaurs, and eventually the dinosaurs all died and decomposed to become oil.
     So the energy from a sunbeam was converted by a plant to become that plant’s roots, leaves, flowers, stems and seeds. That became dino-food and the big reptiles became oil to be burned to power steam-driven turbines to break magnetic fields and produce alternating current, to be converted into the direct current of a battery.
     But what about the coal, natural gas and nuclear power that went into the creation of the electricity to power the drone?
     The Earth’s dense forests of ancient times became buried under soil. As more and more soil was deposited, they were compressed. The temperature also rose as they sank deeper and deeper. As the process continued the plant matter was protected from biodegradation and oxidation, usually by mud or acidic water. This trapped the carbon in immense peat bogs that were eventually covered and deeply buried by sediments. Under high pressure and high temperature, dead vegetation was slowly converted to coal.
     So the sun’s energy was converted by plants to become coal. Matter and energy are never lost. They just change form.
     Like oil and coal, natural gas is a fossil fuel formed when layers of buried plants, gases and animals are exposed to intense heat and pressure over thousands of years. The energy that the plants originally obtained from the sun is stored in the form of chemical bonds in natural gas.
     Nuclear power happens from the fission of atoms. This is matter being changed to energy at the atomic level.
      So it all goes back to the sun’s power, which goes back to the origin of all power – either God or for the unbelievers -- something else.
     Now, let’s decide how many sunbeams are required to charge a battery for one hour so that it provides five minutes of flight time.
    Sunbeams are too undefined. There is no universal width, or length of a sunbeam.
     Light in a vacuum travels at a certain speed, but is it affected by time?
     Anyway, since there were other things to think about during the drive, and since some answers seemed to elude me, I decided this set of drone flights were powered by three sunbeams for 12 years, which shone on a series of plants as the earth turned.
     Those plants were eaten by dinosaurs, and the plants were flooded and buried by water and soil, and compressed by being stacked with that soil and then affected by gravity and time to become coal, oil and natural gas. This mix of fuel was added to by a couple of atoms from some sort of radioactive isotope to create electricity.
       So to shorten all of that, Dragonfly Won made the Inglis flights powered by God-given electricity that came to fruition from engineers and others working to assure that this could happen to end the first of some series of drone flights by
     Where is the next flight? What will the drone operator think of then? Stay tuned to your favorite drone channel.

Dixie Music Center’s
recital rocks history

Teachers and students listen as Dotti Leichner opens the evening recital.

Story, Photos and Video

By Jeff M. Hardison © May 16, 2015 @ 9:17 p.m.
     OLD TOWN – From the moment of walking through the door and being greeted by Bob Leitner, through the performances by seven guitar students, two keyboard students and two instructors and past the refreshments and reception, the 2015 Dixie Music Center’s Spring Recital not only provided for a wonderful evening on Saturday (May 16), but it was truly inspirational.
     As Dotti Leitner said when she spoke about an older guitar student, every one of the performers on stage that night was very brave to get up in front of an auditorium full of people to perform. Some adults are not quite up to the task.
     Dotti Leitner, who with her husband Bob have owned and operated Dixie Music Center since 1991, said they are proud of their students and their instructors. They feel blessed to have these two teachers to instruct the students.

In this video, Austin Cole (left) jams with Bruce Miller.

     This night marked another yearly historic event, in part because once again the Dixie County Historical Society hosted the recital in the Dixie County Cultural Center’s auditorium, formerly the Old Town School’s auditorium.
     Another group that helped Dixie Music Center this year was Fanning Springs Community Church, who so graciously allowed the use of its chairs. Another individual who made the whole night complete was Jackie Driggers, who baked goodies for the reception.
     Guitar Instructor Bruce Miller and Vocal/Keyboard Instructor Robbie Blake opened the night of fun by performing a duet of You Make Me Feel So Young, a song by Frank Sinatra.
     The first student to perform was Gabrielle Daniel who performed In The Evening By The Moonlight. She is one of the two youngest musicians, and they both played well.
      Noah Eckert performed on guitar next as he played a blues jam with instructor Miller.
     “Awesome” Dawson Perry, another young performer, was the first keyboard player to play in the recital. As Perry played Row, Row, Row Your Boat, the audience joined by singing.
     John Jones played a complex guitar piece with Miller and as Dotti Leichner said, he practices a lot and it shows.
     Thomas Ruth performed two songs on guitar, with the second being The Star-Spangled Banner, which caused many people to stand for the song.
     Emma Lee Hooper then performed the Vienna Waltz by Johann Strauss, and it is a wonder at least one couple didn’t get up and start dancing. It was a flawless performance on keyboard by Hooper.
Next up was Larry Patton, an adult who learned to play guitar and for his performance, he sang as well.
     Austin Cole was the final performer. He jammed on guitar with Miller.
     Each student who was present got a certificate for completing their course. Not every student who earned a certificate made the next bold step of performing at the recital, but each person has the opportunity to not take the stage if they are not inclined to do that.

People on stage at the certificate presentation are (from left) Dotti Leitner, Robbie Blake, Larry Patton, Emma Lee Hooper, Thomas Ruth, Dawson Perry, Noah Eckhart, Austin Cole, Gabrielle Daniel and Bruce Miller.

Day camp registration opens
Camp Cherry Lake registration opens
Published May 14, 2015 @ 12:07 p.m.
     BRONSON -- The Levy County 4-H Day Camp opportunities and the Camp Cherry Lake Residential Camp opportunities are ready for parents and guardians.
     Registration is open for the day camps, which run from June 8 through Aug. 13, and for the residential camp which runs July 6-10.
     The 4-H Camp Cherry Lake Residential Camp is open to youths who are 8 to 14-plus years old. The registration form shows the child can sign up as a Counselor In Training if he or she is 13. Counselors are 14 years and older.
     Adult counselors oversee the whole program.
     Each camper will attend fun workshops such as kayaking and canoeing, swimming, archery, crafts, recreational games and more.
     The cost is $190. Those qualifying for free and reduced meals can deduct $34 from that fee. This decision is made by a Levy County Extension Office assistant based on income guidelines. The first 30 youths to complete registration qualify for a $50 scholarship. Counselors In Training an Counselors who complete training qualify for $75.
     There is a $25 deposit required at registration. There is a registration deadline. All registration materials and payments must be received by Camp Orientation by Sunday, June 28 at 2 p.m. Hardship scholarships are available. Contact Lacy Harris or Albert Fuller at 352-486-5131 for more information.
     In regard to all of the 4-H Day Camps listed below, the participant does not need to be a Levy County resident or a 4-H member.
     The child must be 8 years old by date camp starts.  All 8-9 year olds must have proof of age. Camps are Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12 Noon.
     The cost is $25 per camp unless specified. This must be paid seven days in advance or there is a late fee of $5.    
     Every camp includes breakfast, lunch, snacks, field trips and swimming.
     Forms can be picked up at the UF/IFAS Levy County Extension office from 8 a.m. until 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday. The office is located at 625 N. Hathaway Ave. (U.S. Alt. 27), in Bronson.
Plant Camp (June 8-12)
     In this camp participants will learn about and work with a variety of different plants including ornamentals, vegetables, and plants in the wild. The camp will include field trips and opportunities to take home samples of plants they have worked with.
Shooting Sports I (June 15-19)
     Participants have the opportunity to earn their Hunter Safety Certification during this week and learn to shoot Archery, Rifle, Shotgun, and/or Muzzle-loading.
Sports Fishing I (June 22-26)
     Participants will learn to rig and use simple fishing tackle including cane poles and/or rods. This camp will include fishing trips to various sites and a fish fry on Friday!!
Shooting & Fishing II (June 29-July 3)
     Campers must have taken Shooting Sports I to participate. This camp is designed to take these two activities to another level. During Shooting Sports we will hone skills learned in Shooting Sports I. During the Sports Fishing days we will hone skills learned in Fishing I and take an extra fishing excursion to a new destination.
Marine Science (July 13-17)
     In this day camp, participants will learn more about the Marine environment. It will include boat trips, seining, cast-netting, crabbing, and specimen identification.
Remote Control,
Science of Flight & LEGO Robotics (July 20-24)
     Participants are welcome to bring their remote control toys and try new ones. Also, participants will be making and programming LEGO robots.
International Food, Fun & Fitness (July 27-31)
     Join us for a fun-filled week while we enjoy food and stay healthy. Several guest speakers from different countries will share some of their customs, including food.
Outdoor Adventures (Aug. 3-7)
     Come ready for anything! In this day camp we will be combining entomology & insect collecting with canoeing, hiking, exploring our natural resources, and many other activities.
Games (Aug. 10-13 – No Friday)
     This day camp is designed to enjoy the fun of old school games! Some of the games include, bean bag toss, jacks and much more!
Beginner ATV (2 Day) (Aug. 10-13)
     Designed for all kids ages 12 and up who are interested in earning a Rider Certificate. Youth will be taught safe operation, riding practices and general maintenance. The camp will also include a trail ride. This camp does not include the e-course. Participants should plan to take the e-course prior to attending this camp. Contact our office for sample instructions on completing the e-course. This day camp will be taught by local American Safety Institute (ASI) instructors for the purpose of completing the ASI-ATV Safety Certification. The ATV camp is open to all youth ages 12 and up. Participants will be taking trips or trail rides with ATV’s each day. Cost of this camp is $50. Participants must have a rider certificate prior to taking this day camp. This can be done in the beginner ATV Day Camp if they don’t already have one.
     All of these camps, registration forms and more information can be found on the website at
     If you have any questions about the 4H camps, please call 352-486-5131 and ask for Lacy Harris.

Sewing and cooking day camps
offered this summer for
children aged 8-13 years old
Published May 7, 2015 @ 7:27 a.m.
Updated May 12, 2015 @ 2:47 p.m.

     BRONSON --
The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is offering sewing and cooking day camping opportunities this summer for children.
     “Campers in the Kitchen” is scheduled for the week of June 22. Campers will learn basic food preparation skills, food safety, nutrition and more. Crafts and physical activity will also be a part of the program. A Culinary Presentation will be held on Friday.  The DEADLINE to apply for this camp is Monday, June 8, with a minimum of 10 campers required.
     “Tops and Bottoms” is the beginning sewing camp scheduled for the week of July 13. Campers will make a pair of elastic waist shorts and decorate a T-shirt. A trip to the Levy County Quilt Museum is planned. Crafts and other activities will enhance this program. A Fashion Show will be held on Friday. The DEADLINE to apply for this camp is Monday, June 29 with a minimum of six campers required.
     Advanced Sewing Camps are tentatively scheduled for the weeks of Aug. 3 and Aug. 10. This is for second year or more sewers. Campers will choose what to sew prior to camp. The DEADLINE to apply for these camps are Monday, July 20 with a minimum of six campers required.
     These camps are designed for children ages 8 (as of Sept. 1, 2014) to 13 years of age. The cost is $25 per camp. Sewing camps will also require purchase of fabric. Camps will start promptly at 9 a.m. – Breakfast, lunch and snacks are provided. Camps end at approximately 4:15 p.m. Space is limited in these camps and money holds the spot. The camps will be held of the Levy County Extension grounds on Hathaway Avenue (U.S. Alt. 27) in Bronson.
     Volunteers are also needed. If interested, please call the Levy County Extension Office. For more information, please contact Muriel Turner at 352-486-5131

SVP seeks actors and more for
The Addams Family Musical

Published May 8, 2015 @ 9:27 a.m.
     CHIEFLAND -- It is no small task to create the production planned for performances on Oct. 16-18, 23-25, 30-31 and Nov. 1, and so the Suwannee Valley Players are having an open casting call on various dates.

     The (SVP) plans to present The Addams Family Musical, Book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, Music and Lyrics by Andrew Lippa, Based on Characters Created by Charles Addams from mid-October through Nov. 1.
     Auditions are at The Chief Theatre, 25 E. Park Ave., in Chiefland. These dates are:
Tuesday, June 8, 7 to 9 p.m.
Saturday, June 13, 4 to 6 p.m.
Saturday, June 20, 2 to 4 p.m.
     Additional Auditions in Cross City and Trenton are to be announced. Please watch for dates and locations.
     Final callbacks will be scheduled with individuals as needed.
     Morticia and Gomez Addams want to continue living amongst death, pain and suffering, the way they always have. But then there is a change in plans. Their eldest child, Wednesday, has fallen in love with a strange boy, Lucas Beinekes. To the Addams, strange is normal. Happy is sad. The Addams believe life revolves around death. To Morticia and Gomez’s own complexity, they invite Wednesday’s new boyfriend’s family to their home. Many strange things happen the night when the Beinekes come to visit.
      The cast includes (ages are suggested, not written in stone) Gomez Addams (male adult, 30-60); Morticia Addams (female adult, 30-60); Uncle Fester (male adult, 30-60); Grandma (female adult, 40-90); Wednesday Addams (female youth/adult, 15-25); Pugsley Addams (male youth, 10-15); Lurch (male adult, 30-60); Mal Beineke (Lucas’ father) (male adult, 30-60); Alice Beineke (Lucas’ mother) (female adult, 30-60); Lucas Beineke (male youth/adult, 15-25); and The Addams Ancestors – A ghostly chorus that must be able to sing and dance. Multiple parts available (all ages welcome).
     The SVP also needs Lighting Tech; Sound Tech; Special Effects Tech; Stage Manager; Assistant Stage Manager; Props Manager; Puppeteer; and a Choreographer.
     Materials needed for audition
     Acting: Bring three copies of a monologue of your choosing. This will be performed for the directors in the character(s) you wish to audition for.
     Singing: Be prepared to sing at least six bars of the song of your choice. This will be done without musical accompaniment. If you choose you may bring your own CD to sing with.
     Dancing: Be prepared to show that you can take direction and learn basic dance steps.
     This is an open casting call. All roles are open and available. The SVP encourages new talent to come and audition. If you need help in choosing a monologue or have questions regarding the audition process or the rehearsal schedule, please feel free to contact director Diana Child at 352-949-3432 or email



WED.    MAY 19   8:07 a.m.


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