FLORIDA GARDENING WORKSHOP: Make Rain Barrel, Take Home & Install

NASSAU COUNTY, FLORIDA GARDENING: Participate in a “make and take” session. Features making a water conserving rain barrel for your yard. Discussed will be the merits of water conservation and the ease of using rain water for gardening. This class will provide rain barrels which will be fitted for use in residential landscape homes.

NASSAU COUNTY PARENTS: Learn About College Financial Aid February 24

Sometimes, students and their families have to be educated about higher education. “College Goal Sunday,” the statewide event involves informative sessions and assistance with filling out federal financial-aid forms. Help is here and near for high school seniors and their parents at the Florida State College Nassau Center campus in Yulee on Feb. 24, 2013 from 1 to 4 pm.

RARE IN NORTH AMERICA: Amelia Island’s Ritz-Carlton Earns Elite Rating

The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida has achieved a rare rating in the hotel and restaurant industries. Remarkably, it is the only hotel and restaurant combination in North America to achieve the top AAA Five Diamond rating in 2013 for both the hotel plus its fine dining restaurant, Salt.

Northeast Florida Real Estate: Positive Housing Market Indicators

Single-family home sales prices in the local area have been moving generally upward for about a year now, with the Fernandina Beach median sales price at $293,800 for a single-family home, according to Zillow data. Also, the Annual Report on the Northeast Florida Housing Market (Calendar Year 2012) indicates, “yearlong evidence points to market recovery…” Housing inventory down 28% in Northeast Florida, buyer rebound with closed sales up 7.1% during 2012.

GARDEN TALK: Gopher Tortoises, Bright Yellow Carolina Jessamine

Have you seen Gopher Tortoises in Amelia Island’s sand dunes? They are most active during the warmest parts of the day, and represent “a healthy, balanced environment.” Grow Carolina Jessamine in full sun or shade, it’s drought tolerant and not picky about the soil. Read more about northeast Florida nature and gardening topics.

Testy Debate Over Fernandina Beach Library Renovation

The debate over whether and how to renovate the existing library has evolved into two opposite viewpoints. And both sides have been rather unwilling to change their stances, as if written in permanent ink. The testy debate will likely come to a conclusion before the City Commission on Feb. 5, 2013. Read more by Steve Nicklas…