Plans Underway For Saturday’s Molino Christmas Parade

November 29, 2010

Final plans are being made now for the 8th Annual Molino Christmas Parade this Saturday

The parade begins at 1 p.m. and will travel from the west end of Crabtree Church Road at Sunshine Hill Road to the Molino Ballpark, where there will be a  bake sale and Santa will visit with the children.

Entries are being accepted now for the parade; pre-register at Fran’s Diner, or register the day of the parade. Parade line-up will be at 12:15. Entry fees are $15 for floats or vehicles, and motorcycles, golf carts and horses are $5 each. Go karts and 4-wheelers are not allowed.

For more information, contact Jayson Ging at (850) 587-2825, Fran’s Diner at (850) 587-2803 or Darrell Wilson at (850) 516-6652.

All proceeds from the parade benefit Molino area children in need during the Christmas season. Donations of toys and non-perishable food items are also being accepted at Fran’s Diner.

In the event of rain, the parade will be rescheduled for Sunday, December 5 at 2 p.m.

Ernest Ward Names Students Of The Month For November

November 29, 2010

Ernest Ward Middle School has named their Students of the Month for November. They are (L-R) Elizabeth Wright, Ben Preston and Ashlynn McCall. Submitted photo for, click to enlarge.

Deadline Near To Apply To West Florida High

November 29, 2010

West Florida High School is accepting applications for the 2011-2012 school year through Wednesday.

West Florida High is a magnet school open to high school students from anywhere in Escambia County. The school’s advanced technology program focuses on providing a unique, comprehensive and useful education that will lead to lifelong personal, career and professional accomplishments. West Florida’s mission is to prepare students for entry into their chosen field or higher educational pursuit through the incorporation of learning experiences and technical fields.

Students and parents may obtain applications at or at their middle school guidance office. For further information, contact Lori Anderson at (850) 941-6221, extension 2188.

Class 1-A Playoff Brackets

November 29, 2010

Northview will face Trinity Christian at 6:30 Central time Friday night in Jacksonville in the Class 1-A State Semifinals.

No Injuries As Early Morning Fire Prompts Evacuation At Century Care Center

November 28, 2010

An early Sunday morning fire prompted an evacuation at Century Care Center, but caused little damage.

The nursing facility reported smoke and flames from a clothes dryer just after 1 a.m. The fire was extinguished a short time later.

The fire was limited to the gas clothes dryer in the laundry room, while smoke from the fire was contained to the center wing of the building.

Residents of the facility were evacuated to the parking lot as temperatures hovered in the upper 30’s. The patients were moved back indoors to the smoke-free north and south wings of the building by 1:40 a.m.

There were no injuries; all residents were reported to be in good condition.

The Century, McDavid and Molino stations of Escambia Fire Rescue and the Flomaton Fire Department responded to the blaze.

Cut Your Own: Local Christmas Tree Farm

November 28, 2010


Many area residents will enjoy Christmas tradition again this year with a fresh, locally grown Christmas tree. The Country Pine Christmas Tree Farm near Bratt is now open daily until Christmas.

“You come here for the old time experience,” said farm owner Andy Bogdan. “This is so much more than just a plastic tree.”

treefarm20.jpgVisitors to the Christmas tree farm stroll around the trees, which are located in an “L” shape field around a scenic pond with a fountain and ducks. Once the perfect tree is found, visitors can cut their own tree with a supplied saw, or have Bogdan cut it down.

The tree is then shaken to remove any loose needles (and bugs), then it’s ready to head home or it can be bagged for easier transport.

During the “experience”, visitors can also enjoy free cookies, apple juice, candy canes for the kids and lots of Christmas music. “The kids can run and play, and have the time of their lives looking for just the right tree,” Bogdan said.

Tree varieties include Virginia Pines, Leylend Cypress and Carolina Sapphires. If you have allergies, he said the Leylend Cypress is the perfect tree. It will not drop needles and has virtually no smell. The Carolina Sapphire has an intriguing aroma that is a mix of lemon, lime and mint. The Virginia Pine has that classic pine Christmas tree smell.

True fresh cut trees cut on the farm will last from before Thanksgiving until well after Christmas, Bogdan said.

Country Pine Christmas Tree Farm is one of the few remaining Christmas tree farms in Northwest Florida or South Alabama, and is the only one in the immediate area. There were a few more prior to hurricane Ivan and Dennis, Bogdan said, but most did not survive.

“You had the direct damage from the wind,” he said. “Then you have the delayed die back from damage to the trees. Exotic bugs and fungus that were not here before were blown in, and trees around here had no resistance.”

“”The trees have had good growth since the hurricane. An average seven or eight foot tall Christmas tree will grow from a seedling in about four years. “They grow much faster here in the South than they do up north,” he said.

With a little straightening and tender loving care, Bogdan’s trees post-hurricane are ready for a living room and a visit from Santa. Prices vary depending on the variety of tree and height, ranging from $18 to $50.

Bogdan and his wife moved to the Davisville area from Miami after he retired from Eastern Airlines. He was looking for a little something to do in his retirement and settled on Christmas tree farmer over 10 years ago.

“I’d never farmed before, but ended up with a Christmas tree farm,” he said. “But it’s a nice business. It’s not like being a doctor or a lawyer where people you deal with are not happy. At a Christmas tree farm, everybody is happy when they come here.”

For more photos from the Christmas tree farm, click here.

The Country Pine Christmas Tree Farm is located at 5001 Still Road, just south of Highway 4. A map is at the bottom of this page. The farm is open 9 a.m. until dark daily. Trees range is size from table-top to 12 feet. (850) 327-4600.

Pictured top: A few of the trees at the Country Pine Christmas Tree Farm near Bratt. Pictured middle: At the Christmas tree farm, you can use one of their saws to cut your own tree. Pictured below: The Country Pine Christmas Tree Farm stand with tree accessories plus goodies like free apple juice, cookies and candy canes for the kids. file photos, click to enlarge.


Video Highlights: Northview Beats Freeport For Regional Title

November 28, 2010

Here are video highlights by Keith Garrison from Northview’s win Friday night over Freeport.

For game details, click here for the story.

(If you don’t see the video, it is because a setting at your home, work or school firewall or computer is blocking YouTube videos.)

Sunny Today, Rain Early Week

November 28, 2010

We’ll have sunny skies for our Sunday, but rain is on the way. Rain chances will increase Monday into Tuesday as another cold front passes through the area, bringing lows in the 20’s by mid-week.

Here is your official North Escambia area forecast:

  • Sunday: Sunny, with a high near 63. East wind around 5 mph.
  • Sunday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 44. East wind around 5 mph.
  • Monday: Scattered showers, with thunderstorms also possible after noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 70. East wind between 5 and 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
  • Monday Night: Scattered showers and thunderstorms, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after midnight. Cloudy, with a low around 62. South wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
  • Tuesday: Rain likely and possibly a thunderstorm. Cloudy, with a high near 64. South wind 10 to 15 mph becoming north. Chance of precipitation is 70%.
  • Tuesday Night: A 40 percent chance of rain, mainly before midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 35. Northwest wind around 10 mph.
  • Wednesday: Sunny, with a high near 55. North wind between 5 and 15 mph.
  • Wednesday Night: Clear, with a low around 28. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm.
  • Thursday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 58.
  • Thursday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 33.
  • Friday: Sunny, with a high near 62.
  • Friday Night: Clear, with a low around 36.
  • Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 57.

Escambia K-9 Cops Certified

November 28, 2010

Three members of the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office K9 Unit recently participated in the United States Police Canine Association National Field Trials in Louisiana. Over 100 handlers from across the country participated in the trials.

Deputy Wayne Gulsby, Deputy Patrick Crossley and Lt. Jason Potts all received their certification from the United States Police Canine Association. In the agility section of the competition, Deputy Gulsby and K9 Miso finished in fourth place and Lt. Jason Potts and K9 Askan finished fifth. Lt. Jason Potts also finished in fourth place overall in search work and fourth place overall in the entire certification.

Pictured above: Escambia County Sheriff’s Office  Deputy Wayne Gulsby  and Miso perform a drug  search  at Northview High School. file photo, click to enlarge.

FHP Remains Out In Force For Holiday Weekend

November 28, 2010

The Florida Highway Patrol will continue to be  out in force today as part of the annual Click It Or Ticket campaign.

One of the easiest things motorists can do to protect themselves in a crash is to fasten their safety belts — that is the message the Florida Highway Patrol is delivering to motorists who defy Florida’s safety belt law and neglect to buckle up. On Nov. 21 – 30, local troopers are joining law enforcement agencies around the state in the Click It or Ticket campaign aimed at targeting unrestrained motorists and their passengers.

“Our message is simple. If you fail to buckle up, then expect a ticket,” said Major Eddie Johnson, commander of FHP’s Troop A, which covers ten counties in the Panhandle area. “The hard working men and women of the Florida Highway Patrol will be diligent in enforcing our safety belt law. Our state troopers are committed to making a difference through education and enforcement.”

Florida’s law requires all drivers and adult occupants in the front seat of a vehicle to fasten their safety belt. Occupants under the age of 18, regardless of where they sit in a vehicle, also must buckle up. Safety belts have long been proven to save lives and reduce injuries when worn properly during a vehicle crash. Motorists cited for failure to buckle up face a non-moving violation that carries a $30 base fine, plus court costs if convicted.

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