Nassau County Property Values Projected to Increase

Nassau County Property Values Projected to IncreaseNassau County, FL – The Nassau County Property Appraiser’s Office released this week the 2015 estimated preliminary tax roll with the initial numbers showing an increase as expected.

According to Property Appraiser Mike Hickox, this is great news as it points to a steady recovery from the economic downturn experienced the past several years. “The county-wide market value is slowly starting to get back to the values of 2009,” said Hickox.

New construction played a role in the increase as over 500 new homes were added to this year’s tax roll with a total value of over $141 million. That brings the total market value for Nassau County to over $10.3 billion, up almost 6% from the previous year. The market value includes all property before any exemptions, classifications, or capped assessments.

Hickox presented the 2015 estimated values to the taxing authorities on May 29th so they can begin their budget process. They will use the values to help determine the tax rate for the property owners in Nassau County.

Taxable values have increased as well; however, property owners are protected by the Save Our Homes amendment which caps the amount the assessed value can increase. “Homestead properties can increase no more than 3%, or the consumer price index (CPI), whichever is lower,” said Chief Deputy Kevin Lilly. “Based on the CPI used for 2015, homesteaded properties will increase no more than 0.8%.” Non-homesteaded properties are capped at 10%.

In 2015, Nassau County’s taxable value is estimated to be about $6.8 billion, up over 5% compared to last year.

The City of Fernandina is projected to see an increase of over 5%, bringing their taxable value to almost 1.7 billion.

The Town of Callahan is estimated to have an increase in their taxable value to over $71 million, up by almost 3 percent from last year.

The Town of Hilliard is expected to see an increase of over 3 percent, bringing their taxable value to $76 million.

The official preliminary tax roll is expected to be released to the taxing authorities and the Department of Revenue by July 1st. Property owners are encouraged to visit the property appraisers website, www.nassauflpa.com, to view their values in mid-July.

For more information, please contact the Property Appraiser’s Office at (904) 491-7300.

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10 Ways to Sleep Better at Night

10 Ways to Sleep Better at NightI started having issues sleeping after I had my second child. I would have lie awake in bed for hours and wake up feeling no more refreshed than when I went to bed. I decided that enough was enough and started experimenting with various ways to sleep better at night. Here are the most helpful tips I have come across:

Journal before Bed

It didn’t help that I was having emotional issues and constantly worrying about various things. I found that the best way to get these out of the way before sleep is to write everything down – writing is soothing, much more than trying to talk it out. I would write everything down and resolve to deal with the issues the next day.

Listen to Audiobooks

When I was young, listening to a bedtime story was how I always fell asleep. You can replicate this as an adult by listening to audiobooks. They have a soothing and calming effect that makes you fall asleep.

Quit Smoking

Cigarettes contain nicotine, a stimulant that will make it difficult for you to fall asleep. Quitting smoking is easier said than done, but well worth the effort.

Get Enough Sunlight and Fresh Air

It can be hard when you work in the office all day, but getting sunlight is extremely important. Fresh air and sunlight during the day regulate your body’s sleep-wake cycle which will result in a regular sleeping pattern. Sunlight helps your body’s natural production of melatonin at night and helps improve your sleep quality.

Complete Darkness

Bright lights keep you and your brain awake. Try to sleep in a room that is completely dark. Turn off any light generated from gadgets or computers. Close your windows or pull down your curtains to prevent outdoor light from shining through. If necessary, wear an eye mask. People who are very light sensitive should definitely wear this.

Wear Comfortable Clothes

Some people love to wear their oldest shirts with holes on it while other prefer sleeping naked. It does not matter what you are wearing as long as they are comfortable and loose.

Get an Air Purifier for the Bedroom

Although you may not notice this, the air quality in your bedroom is directly related to your sleep quality. Get an air purifier with high CADR ratings to get rid of common air contaminants in your bedroom. Depending on your personal preferences, you might prefer an air purifier that generates some white noise – this can also help you fall asleep more easily.

Avoid Alcohol/ Recreational Drugs

I had a drinking problem that was interfering with my sleep. There are ingredients in alcohol and recreational drugs that keep you awake. Never engage in a drinking spree at night. You may be sleeping but your body is wide awake trying to process and metabolize the alcohol, making it difficult for you to sleep restfully.

Avoid Drinking Too Much Fluids

Drinking too much water, juices, tea and soda leads to frequent bathroom visits which will make you awake at night. Also, remember to cut off caffeine four to six hours before your bedtime.

Take a Warm Bath or Shower

Taking a warm bath helps in relaxing and calming your body. Doing this two hours before bedtime helps enormously with improving sleep quality.

janet-miller-2When I fully implemented the above, I finally began to be able to sleep restfully. This is an amazing gift that I would not trade for any other. Do you have any other tips on how to sleep better you would like to share? Please leave a comment below.

Byline: Janet Miller is a health practitioner, yogi and nutritionist. She specializes in holistic health and enjoys helping others discover the simple joys in life.

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Sunday’s Religious Musings

Sunday's Religious MusingsHere’s another fun read I received in my inbox earlier this month. The original author of these religious musings is unknown.

During these serious and troubled times, people of all faiths should remember these Four great truths:
1. Muslims do not recognize Jews as God’s Chosen People.
2. Jews do not recognize Jesus as the Messiah.
3. Protestants do not recognize the Pope as the leader of the Christian world.
4. Baptists do not recognize each other at the liquor store.

GOOD SAMARITAN
A Sunday school teacher was telling her class the story of the Good Samaritan. She asked the class, “If you saw a person lying on the roadside, all wounded and bleeding, what would you do?” A thoughtful little girl broke the hushed silence, “I think I’d throw up.”

DID NOAH FISH?
A Sunday school teacher asked, “Johnny, do you think Noah did a lot of fishing when he was on the Ark?”
“No,” replied Johnny. “How could he, with just two worms.”

THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD
A Sunday School teacher decided to have her young class memorize one of the most quoted passages in the Bible – Psalm 23. She gave the youngsters a month to learn the chapter. Little Rick was excited about the task – but he just couldn’t remember the Psalm. After much practice, he could barely get past the first line. On the day that the kids were scheduled to recite Psalm 23 in front of the congregation. Ricky was so nervous, when it was his turn, he stepped up to the microphone and said proudly, “The Lord is my Shepherd, and that’s all I need to know.”

UNANSWERED PRAYER
The preacher’s 5 year-old daughter noticed that her father always paused and bowed his head for a moment before starting his sermon. One day, she asked him why. “Well, Honey,” he began, proud that his daughter was so observant of his messages. “I’m asking the Lord to help me preach a good sermon.”
“How come He doesn’t answer it?” she asked.

BEING THANKFUL
A Rabbi said to a precocious six-year-old boy, “So your mother says your prayers for you each night? That’s very commendable. What does she say?” The little boy replied, “Thank God he’s in bed!”

ALL MEN / ALL GIRLS
When my daughter, Kelli, said her bedtime prayers, she would bless every family member, every friend, and every animal (current and past). For several weeks, after we had finished the nightly prayer, Kelli would say, “And all girls.”
This soon became part of her nightly routine, to include this closing. My curiosity got the best of me and I asked her, “Kelli, why do you always add the part about all girls?”
Her response, “Because everybody always finish their prayers by saying ‘All Men’!”

SAY A PRAYER
Little Johnny and his family were having Sunday dinner at his Grandmother’s house. Everyone was seated around the table as the food was being served. When Little Johnny received his plate, he started eating right away. “Johnny! Please wait until we say our prayer.” said his mother.
“I don’t need to,” the boy replied.
“Of course, you do” his mother insisted. “We always say a prayer before eating at our house.”
“That’s at our house.” Johnny explained. “But this is Grandma’s house and she knows how to cook.”

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Giant Waterslide Returns, Ads on Trolleys, and City Manager Revolving Door

Giant Waterslide Returns, Ads on Trolleys, and City Manager Revolving DoorHere is the agenda for the June 2, 2015, City of Fernandina Beach Commissioners Meeting. The meeting will be held at 6:00 PM, on Ash Street in historic downtown.

1. CALL TO ORDER
2. ROLL CALL
3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE Invocation by Reverend Wardell Avant of Kingdom Ministries.

4. PROCLAMATIONS
4.1. PROCLAMATION – NATIONAL MARINA DAY
Proclaims June 13, 2015 as “Welcome to the Water on National Marina Day in Fernandina.” Fernandina Beach Harbor Marina Manager Joe Springer with Westrec Marina will be present to accept the Proclamation.

4.2. PROCLAMATION – CODE ENFORCEMENT APPRECIATION WEEK
Proclaims June 1-5, 2015 as “Code Enforcement Appreciation Week”. Michelle Forstrom, City Code Compliance Officer, will be present to accept the Proclamation.

4.3. PROCLAMATION – NATIONAL FLAG DAY & NATIONAL FLAG WEEK
Proclaims June 14, 2015, as “National Flag Day,” and the week of June 14-20, 2015, as “National Flag Week.” Ms. Cindy Glenn, Chapter Regent of the Daughters of the American Revolution, will be present to accept the Proclamation.

5. CONSENT AGENDA
5.1. FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT – DRIVING DYNAMICS, INC.
RESOLUTION 2015-84 APPROVING A FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT WITH DRIVING DYNAMICS, INC. TO USE AIRPORT PROPERTY TO CONDUCT CORPORATE DRIVER TRAINING ON OCTOBER 26, 2015; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves a Facilities Use Agreement with Driving Dynamics, Inc., for corporate drivers training on October 26, 2015.

5.2. TRAFFIC SIGNAL AGREEMENT – FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
RESOLUTION 2015-85 APPROVING THE TRAFFIC SIGNAL MAINTENANCE AND COMPENSATION AGREEMENT WITH THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (FDOT); AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the Traffic Signal Maintenance and Compensation Agreement between the City of Fernandina Beach and the Florida Department of Transportation.

6. PUBLIC COMMENT REGARDING ITEMS NOT ON THE AGENDA

7. RESOLUTIONS
7.1. WORLD CHANGERS NASSAU PROJECT
RESOLUTION 2015-86 EXPEDITING THE PERMIT PROCESS ASSOCIATED WITH THE WORK OF THE WORLD CHANGERS – NASSAU PROJECT, FOR THE PERIOD JULY 13-18, 2015; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: The City of Fernandina Beach agrees to expedite permits and/or the inspection process during the period of July 13-18, 2015.

7.2. BUDGET AMENDMENT – SANITATION
RESOLUTION 2015-87 APPROVING AMENDMENTS TO THE BUDGET FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2014-2015; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the budget amendment transferring $8,000 to the Sanitation Contractual account from the Sanitation Contingency/Reserve account.

7.3. BUDGET AMENDMENT – GOLF
RESOLUTION 2015-88 APPROVING AMENDMENTS TO THE BUDGET FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2014-2015; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the budget amendment transferring $50,000 from the Golf Contractual account to the Golf Improvements account ($40,000); and to the Golf Professional Services account (10,000).

7.4. FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT – BONHAMS
RESOLUTION 2015-89 APPROVING THE FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT BETWEEN BONHAMS & BUTTERFIELDS AUCTIONEER CORPORATION AND THE CITY OF FERNANDINA BEACH FOR A PREMIUM AUTOMOBILE AUCTION HOSTED DURING THE CONCOURS D’ELEGANGE AT THE CITY GOLF COURSE; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the Facilities Use Agreement between Bonhams & Butterfields and the City of Fernandina Beach.

7.5. FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT – NUBOARD MEDIA
RESOLUTION 2015-90 APPROVING THE FACILITIES USE AGREEMENT BETWEEN NUBOARD MEDIA, INC., AND THE CITY OF FERNANDINA BEACH FOR THE OPERATION OF A TEMPORARY WATERSLIDE AT MAIN BEACH PARK; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the Facilities Use Agreement between Nuboard Media, Inc., and the City of Fernandina Beach, contingent upon Nuboard Media, Inc. providing satisfactory proof of insurance to the City.

7.6. STIPULATION OF PARTIES – FDOT
RESOLUTION 2015-91 APPROVING AN AGREEMENT WITH FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION FOR THE OPENING OF ALACHUA STREET HIGHWAY-RAIL GRADE CROSSING; AUTHORIZING EXECUTION; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Approves the Stipulation of Parties with FDOT for the opening of Alachua Street Highway-Rail Grade Crossing.
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8. ORDINANCE – FIRST READING
8.1. ORDINANCE – PET SALE
ORDINANCE 2015-07 AMENDING CHAPTER 18, ANIMALS, BY AMENDING ARTICLE III, COMMERCIAL ANIMAL ESTABLISHMENTS BY CREATING SECTION 18-17 TO BE ENTITLED REQUIREMENTS FOR SALES OF DOGS AND CATS; PROVIDING FOR DEFINITIONS; PROVIDING FOR PERMITTED SOURCES; PROVIDING FOR CERTIFICATE OF SOURCE; AND PROVIDING FOR PENALTIES; PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE. Synopsis: Amends various Sections of Chapter 18 of the City Code pertaining to Pet Sales.

9. DISCUSSION – DIRECTION – ACTION ITEM
9.1. TROLLEY PILOT PROGRAM ADVERTISING ON TROLLEYS
This item is placed on the agenda by the City Attorney.

9.2. CITY MANAGER RESIGNATION AND NEW CITY MANAGER HIRING PROCESS
This item is placed on the agenda by the consensus of the City Commission.

10. CITY MANAGER REPORTS
11. CITY ATTORNEY REPORTS
12. CITY CLERK REPORTS
13. MAYOR/COMMISSIONER COMMENTS
14. ADJOURNMENT

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Visitors Enjoy New Daily Trolley Service on Amelia Island

Visitors Enjoy New Daily Trolley Service on Amelia IslandAmelia Island, FL – The Amelia Island Transportation & Trolley Company is offering new daily service on the island. The new Island Trolley will operate from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily from May 30 through Labor Day, offering visitors affordable and convenient access to Amelia Island’s most popular beaches, shopping, dining, historic downtown and more.

“The Amelia Island trolley will always be a favorite option for tours and private events, but the new Island Trolley meets a longtime demand for our visitors,” said Gil Langley, President and CEO of the Amelia Island Convention & Visitors Bureau. “The daily trolley route connects several of our attractions and beaches, making it easier for vacationers to explore Amelia’s many treasures.”

Since 2012, the Amelia Island Transportation & Trolley Company has offered a variety of historic tours and service for weddings and other private events. The company will continue to offer tours and private rentals, adding the new Island Trolley to provide more convenient transportation and sightseeing options for passengers. With 17 stops along the route, the new daily service takes riders to Fort Clinch State Park, Main Beach, Seaside Park, the Amelia Island Museum and several other hotspots.

Island Trolley tickets are $3 per ride or $10 for a daily pass. Service starts on Centre Street before crossing Fletcher Avenue. Trolleys then head down Sadler Road and back to the downtown area, making several stops along the way.

For more information, visit www.AmeliaIslandTrolleys.com.

1. Front Street & Centre Street
2. Centre Street & 7th Street
3. Atlantic Ave (Bench) – Central Park
4. Atlantic Ave & 14th Street
5. Atlantic Ave (Bench) – Egans Creek
6. Atlantic Ave Recreation Center
7. Atlantic Ave & Fletcher Road (drop off just past Putt-Putt)
8. Fletcher Road & New York
9. Fletcher Road & Jasmine Street
10. Fletcher Road & Sadler Road
11. Sadler Road/Amelia Trace
12. Residence Inn/Hampton Inn
13. Sadler Road & Citrona Drive
14. Sadler Road/Publix
15. Sadler Road & 8th St.(bench)
16. 8th Street (Winn Dixie shopping area)
17. 8th Street & Beech
18. 3rd Street & Ash Street

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NYT Best Selling Author Mary Alice Monroe Luncheon

NYT Best Selling Author Mary Alice Monroe LuncheonThe Amelia Island Book Festival is presenting a Book Festival Luncheon, in partnership with the Book Loft, featuring New York Times best-selling Author Mary Alice Monroe on Tuesday, June 2, from 11:30 to 1:30.

The luncheon takes place at the Amelia Island Plantation’s Ocean Club where Mary Alice Monroe will unveil her new book, The Summer’s End, part three in her Low-country Summer Trilogy.

Ticket holders will enjoy a delicious meal in a beautiful setting, have an opportunity to hear and visit with this hugely popular author, and receive an autographed copy of her new book, all for price of $42.95 per person.

The bestselling author of nearly two dozen novels, several non-fiction titles, and children’s books, Monroe’s body of work reflects her commitment to the natural world through literature. She is a featured speaker at both literary and conservation events. Her books, which are sold worldwide, have achieved several bestseller lists, including the New York Times, SIBA, and USA Today. Monroe was awarded the South Carolina Center Book Award for Fiction and the International Book Award for Green Fiction. In May 2014, she was awarded the Career Achievement Award for mainstream fiction by RT Book Reviews, Southwest Florida’s Distinguished Author Award, and the South Carolina Book Festival Literary Excellence Award.

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Amelia Island Culinary Academy Now Open on Third Street

Amelia Island Culinary Academy Now Open on Third StreetThe Amelia Island Culinary Academy has found a home in their own space across the street from the Florida House Inn. Located at 25 South Thirds Street, in historic Fernandina Beach, professional Chef Bill Thompson offers fun-filled cooking classes.

Cooking is fun and Chef Bill has taken the culinary arts to a new level by offering more than classes, he also offers special events, too.

Corporate Functions, Team Building Exercise, Culinary and Cooking Groups, Children’s Parties, Book Clubs, Bridesmaid’s parties, Couples Events, Home-school groups and more can enjoy an interactive cooking experience with customized cuisine and a variety of skills levels.

His current offerings include Summer in Tuscany, and Pirate Shrimp.

​​Summer in Tuscany: Simple – Natural – Fresh – Local
Learn the cuisine from the sun-drenched hills of the Tuscan countryside:
Lemon and Rosemary Chicken Brochettes
Wilted arugula salad
Grilled Prosciutto wrapped Asparagus
Zucchini Fritti with roasted garlic, and basil aioli
May 30 – 10:00 to 12:00 noon
Cost is $50 per person

​​PIRATE SHRIMP: Listen to lively stories about the colorful Pirate history of Amelia Island and the local shrimping industry while enjoying Chef Bill’s demonstration.
Shrimp and Grits
Moroccan Shrimp with Vegetable Couscous
May 30 – 4:00 to 5:30
Cost is $50 per person

REGISTRATION INFO
Register online by CLICKING HERE, or via email at info@ameliacooking.com.

Let Chef Bill design a cooking class for your private event!

For more information visit AmeliaCooking.com or call (904) 515-6863.

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It Took Weeks to Edit 2015 Shrimp Festival Images

It Took Weeks to Edit 2015 Shrimp Festival ImagesIt takes weeks to edit the thousands and thousands of pictures and video shot at the 2015 Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival.

Local photographer, Helmut Albrecht, of Slices of Life Photo Studio, has an outstanding seventh, or maybe eighth natural sense when it comes to capturing time… it is indeed a gift. And as it turns out, his wife Peggy, has quite an eye for photography, too!

Nearly a month after the Shrimp Festival, Helmut was able to finish putting together his Shrimp Festival 2015 slideshow.

Here is the slideshow:

Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival 2015 from Slices of Life Photostudio on Vimeo.

Enjoy!

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Green Home Designs and Green Design Benefits

Green Home Designs and Green Design BenefitsWe’ve heard of it numerous times as it often gets mentioned in the TV or in magazines, Green Home Designs are the newest “in” thing when it comes to interior designing – and for good reason. Green Home Design has plenty of benefits when done to your home and it is actually quite easy to do.

Some of the benefits include:

Easier to Breathe
Know more about how to design your house so that it has proper ventilation. According to the EPA, the typical American home is twice more polluted inside the home than compared to the outside. This is largely caused by urea formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds coming from paint, furniture finishes, cooktops, and gas heaters. Keep the air circulating in the home as well as put in some exhaust vents and open windows to let the air in and out.

Stay Warm in Winter
During winter season, one of the biggest problems is, as expected, the temperature. That is why most houses have heating systems to keep the house warm. However, you can simply install stone, ceramic, or concrete floors as this can significantly lower your heating bill. This is a design technique known as passive solar since the stone floor traps the sun’s heat during the day and releases it slowly at night. This means that your heater won’t have to work as hard to keep the house warm. This is perfect for home owners that want to save on heating bills.

green-home-design-2Save Money
Aside from the above mentioned strategy, you can also save money by replacing the incandescent lights in the house. While it is true these old bulbs are being phased out, these bulbs are relatively cheap and you need to replace them more often. The newer, more efficent options include a compact florescent lamp (CFL) that lasts ten times longer, and the more expensive LED lights can last up to 50 times longer than the the typical incandescent light bulb.

Energy Savings
An energy-efficient home uses less energy and will actually help you lower those utility bills. There are a couple of ways to do this and one is by making sure that there is minimal heat loss inside the house during winter. Sealing off the air leakage in the house and choosing low-emissivity windows can also help.

Water Savings
This is especially useful for areas that are dry or suffer from water shortages. This can be done both indoors and outdoors. Using high-efficiency appliances is one such improvement. Dishwashers and washing machines that use just enough water can drastically reduce a household’s water consumption. Better landscape and irrigation systems for the lawn can decrease the water expenditure outdoors. Or consider xeriscaping, landscape design that uses little or no watering.

Better Mood
There is a positive correlation to sunlight and a person’s mood, and a lot of studies have actually proven this fact. Green house designs prioritize natural light as opposed to artificial ones and this improves your mood, too!

Green home design is the use of good interior designing that takes health, functionality, and aesthetics all into account.

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It’s Squash Season at the Farmers Market

JD-Beef-Fernandina-farmers-market-053015-cropThe available produce at the Fernandina Beach Market Place farmers market is changing with the season as the weather warms up and we transition from spring to summer-like weather patterns.

On May 30th you can expect Cabbage Creek Farm to bring plenty of bright sunflower cuttings and a wide, and unique variety of summer squash.

Boatright Farms have plenty of squash and the blueberries will be in season through June. Al and Anna’s field peas and beans are doing incredibly well, and their corn on the cob is fabulous!

Kings Kountry Produce’s strawberry season is calming down, while the melons and squash are coming in fast… we may need to call June, “Squash Season” as every farmer I spoke with said the squash crops are in abundance this season. I’m sure Jane will have Mason jars full of pickled squash soon.

JD Beef is bringing their Angus beef to the market and Steve is expecting a fresh supply of beef that is free of hormones, antibiotics, steroids, and vaccinations. Their farm owns their own bulls and they operate a closed herd; they do not share their borders with any other cattle operation. The herd grazes on Bermuda and rye grass, and there is plenty of hay, minerals, and fresh water available to keep them on a healthy diet. According to the USDA, beef from cattle that is less than 30 months is ideal and JD’s beef comes from cattle less than two years of age. Once their beef is processed, they let it age for two weeks to ensure beef that is tender and tasty. Remember, they follow the “Happy Cow” program and their animals are treated with the utmost respect. They are never handled poorly or mistreated.

Music this week is toe tapping and friendly; Bruce Beville and the Laid Back Band do a number of sing along songs that are fun for kids of all ages.

The Fernandina Beach Market Place farmers’ market is located on North Seventh Street, between Alachua and Centre Streets in historic Fernandina. The market is open form 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, every Saturday, rain or shine.

For more information please find them on facebook, or visit FernandinaBeachMarketPlace for more information.

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Fitness Training Courses to Motivate Clients

Fitness Training Courses to Motivate ClientsAs a gym manager or a personal trainer, the first things you would need to explain to your client are the advantages of exercise. Weight management is just the beginning, as frequent physical activity reduces the body’s chances of catching a number of diseases, improves the heart rate and generally keeps them healthy. You will need to possess good vocational skills and soft skills too, and the academy where you take your courses should be training you with these. This is one of the things you need to keep in mind while choosing the fitness academy to get your certification.

What’s going wrong?
The main issue with modern life is that it has become sedentary. Most people get there work done faster thanks to technology, and this makes lives easier too, just not necessarily better. People spend too much time glued to their smartphones or slouched up in front of a television or computer screen. Walking is obsolete, thanks to modern transportation; clothes are washed by machines now.

Most chores are done much more easily thanks to new technology, and this makes us all the lazier. We put in much less physical activity than we used to, and now it has begun taking a toll on our health. We are spending over seven hours a day sitting or lying down, and people over 65 years of age spend over ten hours doing the same. This lifestyle is a silent killer as it lets your health deteriorate slowly, and then, suddenly.

How Can We Stop This?
The simple thing you need to tell your client is that daily activity goes a long way in preventing chronic diseases, and keeping you healthy. If they can clock in 150 minutes of exercise a week, whether at a gym or integrated into their lifestyle, there is nothing better for their health. For most of your clients, it will be easiest to adapt their lifestyle by introducing simple physical activity into their schedule.

From walking, hiking and cycling to working out or playing sports, all types of activities can benefit your health if performed properly. This means you have to perform exercises vigorously enough to breathe faster, increase heart rate and feel warmer. This is called moderate intensity, and can be tested by the fact that you can talk properly but not sing a song out loud. The next step is vigorous intensity exercise which brings even better results. A quite simple test of vigorous exercise is that a person will not be able to say more than a few words before gasping for breath.

What Illnesses are averted by Exercise?
Heart Disease: Exercise strengthens heart muscle, improves heart rate and the capability of your heart to pump blood. It also raises high-density lipoprotein (HDL, also called good cholesterol) levels and cuts down on low-density lipoprotein (LDL or bad cholesterol levels). Each of these things is very beneficial to the heart and ensures that Peripheral Vascular Disease, strokes and infractions do not take place.
High Blood Pressure and Diabetes: Thanks to regular physical activity, the blood pressure is kept normal, and reduced for patients with high BP. It also cuts down on extraneous fat which controls high blood pressure and also keeps noninsulin-dependent diabetes in check.
Back Pain and Osteoporosis: Exercise increases muscle strength and flexibility and improves endurance. It helps correcting posture and hence prevents back pain. It also promotes bone formation, thus keeping osteoporosis and arthritis at an arm’s length.
Obesity and Weight Gain: Possibly the most important point here is that exercise keeps a person’s weight in check. It burns any excess calories, and if combined with balanced nutrition, obesity will not be a problem anymore, and neither will any of the pitfalls and risks related to it.
Mental Instability: Exercise has a number of psychological effects alongside the physical ones. It improves your mood, stimulates the pleasure center of the brain, reduces anxiety and depression as well, and also lets one cope with stress.
Disability: Any aerobic exercise is great for muscles and bones and hence keeps disabilities and impairments away in senior citizens.

These are the basic things which you should be learning alongside your usual courses at any academy or college. To know more about a career as a trainer or gym manager, read this recent study by recruitingblogs.com on starting career as a sports nutritionist.

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Beach Clean Up on Amelia Island May 30th

Beach Clean Up on Amelia Island May 30thSurf Asylum and Waxhead Sun Defense Foods have joined forces to organize the inaugural Coastal Crusaders Beach Clean Up, a grassroots effort to remove litter from our beaches, starting right here on Amelia Island.

They will provide shady tents, ice cold water and raffle prizes.

All volunteers are welcome, so invite your friends, neighbors and family. Please bring your own environment-friendly tools: buckets, work gloves, biodegradable bags and reusable water bottles.

Together we will make a difference for our beautiful coasts everywhere.

Registration and more info: http://gowaxhead.com/cleanup

Saturday, May 30, 2015, Check in at 4:00 pm, Main Beach Amelia Island, Florida.

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Learn About Comprehensive Dilated Eye Exams

Learn About Comprehensive Dilated Eye ExamsPeople of all ages should have their eyesight tested to keep their vision at its best. Children usually have vision screening in school or at their pediatrician’s office. Adults, however, may require more than vision screening.

Even if your vision seems fine, the only way to know for sure that your eyes are healthy is to get a comprehensive dilated eye exam. When you should start getting such exams depends on many factors, including your age, race, and overall health.

Growing older puts you at risk for glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy — the most common cause of vision loss from diabetes. These eye diseases tend to arise without any warning at their earliest stages. By the time you notice vision loss, it usually can’t be reversed. Timely treatment may let you keep more of your vision longer.

“Yearly comprehensive dilated eye exams starting at age 60 are the most effective and thorough way to detect eye diseases while we can still minimize vision loss,” says Dr. Paul A. Sieving, director of NIH’s National Eye Institute.

If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or a family history of eye disease, you may need yearly comprehensive dilated eye exams earlier. African Americans have a higher risk and an earlier average onset of glaucoma compared to whites, and so are advised to have comprehensive dilated eye exams every 1 to 2 years starting at age 40.

A visual field test gauges the scope of what you’re able to see. Looking straight ahead and with alternating eyes covered, you’ll respond each time you see a light or the examiner’s hand held at the periphery of your vision. A screen or apparatus might also be used. Loss of peripheral vision may be a sign of glaucoma, which damages the optic nerve responsible for carrying visual messages from the eye to the brain.

A visual acuity test detects how well you see at various distances. Looking at an eye chart about 20 feet away, you’ll read aloud the smallest letters you see, first with one eye covered, then the other. The results can help assess disease progression or response to treatment, and may reveal a need for low-vision aids.

Next, the eyes are dilated by placing drops in each eye to widen the pupil, which allows more light to enter the eye. A magnifying lens is used to examine the tissues at the back of the eye, including the retina (light-sensitive tissue), the macula (the central region of the retina required for straight-ahead vision), and the optic nerve. Damage to these areas may be a sign of diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, or age-related macular degeneration.

Tonometry measures the eye’s interior pressure by sending a quick puff of air onto its surface. High intraocular pressure is a risk factor for the optic nerve damage associated with glaucoma… and that’s it. You’re good to go.

-Know your family’s eye health history. Learn if any eye conditions affect your family members.
-Eat right. Fruits and vegetables (especially dark leafy greens like spinach or kale) and fish high in omega-3 fatty acids (like salmon or tuna) may help your eyes.
-Maintain a healthy weight. Excess weight raises your risk for diabetes and other conditions that can harm vision.
-Wear protective eyewear. Wear eye protection specially designed for sports, home improvement projects, and other activities.
-Wear sunglasses. To protect your eyes from sun damage, choose glasses that block at least 99% of both UV-A and UV-B rays.
-Quit smoking or never start. Smoking is linked to an increased risk for several eye diseases.
-Clean your hands and your contact lenses. Avoid infection by washing your hands thoroughly before putting in or taking out contact lenses. Disinfect and replace lenses as instructed.

Article written by NIH News in Health NIH Office of Communications and Public Liaison
Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Vicki Contie
Contributors: Vicki Contie, Alan Defibaugh (illustrations), and Kathryn DeMott

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1st Annual Fernandina Pirate Festival Needs a Logo

pirate-festival-fernandina-contest2015

pirate-festival-fernandina-contest2015The Fernandina Pirates Club, Inc., a local nonprofit, is hosting the first ever, inaugural Fernandina Pirate Festival October 9th, 10th and 11th, 2015.

Festivities begin with Pirates marching, from the Veteran’s Memorial on Atlantic Avenue to 2nd and Ash Streets, parade style, where pirates from all over the region will muster for opening ceremonies.

Saturday and Sunday, the Atlantic Avenue Recreational Center grounds will be home to the festival with family friendly entertainment, music, vendor tents, food booths, educational exhibits and more.

Saturday evening brings the Pirate’s Ball. A ticketed event that includes a southern feast, costume contest and dancing to live music inside the Recreational Center.

The Fernandina Pirate Festival will conclude Sunday afternoon with closing ceremonies.

But, to get the ball really rolling, the Pirates need a logo for the event. Be as creative as you’d like, but please keep the following information in mind:

-The name of the club is Fernandina Pirates Club, Inc
-This is a family friendly event
-This is the 1st event
-The name of the event is Fernandina Pirate Festival

What does the winning artist receive? Well, since they are Pirates they have promised not to draw blood from the winner, but to honor the winning artist and a guest at the Pirates Ball on Saturday night. And of course, what all good pirates really want are “bragging rights” – so the winning artist will get those, too. As a non-profit, they hate to promise too much, but don’t be surprised if they plunder a few more prizes for the winner.

All artist entries must be sent to info@FernandinaPirates.com or mailed to Fernandina Pirates Club, P.O. Box 17243, Fernandina Beach, FL 32035. (Emails are answered by a volunteer, please be patient as the email is NOT checked on a daily basis.)

All submissions must be received or post-marked by midnight on June 30, 2015.

To learn more visit www.FernandinaPirates.com.

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June 2015 Events at the AIFBY Chamber of Commerce

June 2015 Events at the AIFBY Chamber of CommerceAmelia Island, FL – Here is what is coming up in June at the Amelia Island-Fernandina Beach-Yulee Chamber of Commerce:

Wednesday, June 3, 8:30 am • Island Council • Fernandina Beach Golf Club • 2800 Bill Melton Road, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 • Free but requires registration through www.islandchamber.com

Wednesday, June 3, 8:30 am • Florida Main Street Presentation • Fernandina Beach Golf Club • 2800 Bill Melton Road, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 • Free but requires registration through www.islandchamber.com

Tuesday, June 9, 8:30 am • Yulee Area Council • The Golf Club at North Hampton • 22680 N. Hampton Club Way • Free for Chamber members; $25 for prospective members

Tuesday, June 16, 8:30 am • Health Care Council • Community Hospice Foundation of Northeast Florida • 96084 Victoria’s Place, Yulee, FL 32097 • Free for Chamber members; $25 for prospective members

Wednesday, June 17, 8:30 am • Government Affairs Committee • Chamber of Commerce • 961687 Gateway Blvd, Suite 101G, Fernandina Beach, FL

Thursday, June 18, 5:00 pm-7:00 pm • Business After Hours • Island Art Association • 18 North Second Street, Fernandina Beach, FL 32034 • $5 for Chamber members; $25 for prospective members

Friday, June 26, 8:30 am-11:00 am • First Coast CPR training for Chamber members • Chamber of Commerce • 961687 Gateway Blvd, Suite 101G, Fernandina Beach, FL • Free for Chamber members, limited to 10 per class • Register through www.islandchamber.com

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