• Pizza is beloved across the globe. The National Association of Pizza Operators estimates that 350 slices of pizza are consumed every second in the United States. In addition, 93 percent of Americans eat pizza at least once a month, says a Mintel survey.

  • Baking homemade treats is a great way to spend time with family in the kitchen. It’s easy to craft creative and decadent desserts throughout the year, and controlling portion sizes and using the right ingredients can make these dishes a little less diet-unfriendly.

  • Here is another of the meadowbeauties (Rhexia mariana) that grace our summer roadsides. This one is usually white but may also be pale pink. One of the characteristics of meadowbeauty flowers is the urn-shaped structure that holds the flower, that you can see here holding the buds. After the flower finishes blooming this urn holds the seeds and persists long after the plant has finished its bloom for the year. In the winter, you can find these hard seed pods and know a flower bloomed there last summer.

  • Though hot dogs and hamburgers might garner most of the grilling glory, just about any food can be cooked over an open flame. Even homemade pizza, such as the following recipe for “Kale, Potato and Chorizo Pizza” from Karen Adler and Judith Fertig’s “The Gardener & The Grill” (Running Press), can make for a unique entree at your next backyard barbecue.

  • Few foods can be as comforting as down-home cooking that uses ingredients pulled straight from a backyard garden or a local farm. Simple, delicious flavors are often the crux of country cooking.
    While fried chicken, grits and leafy green vegetables are hallmarks of country cooking, particularly in the southern region of the United States, many different ingredients can be used to create country-inspired meals.

    Special to The News

  • Stephen Eugene Celec served as Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy from June 1965 to January 1971. He was moved around about every two months for a year, then spent a year in Vietnam, where he served as Engineering Officer on a River Patrol Boat (RPB) mothership.
    What was your job all about?
    As Engineering Officer, he was responsible for all machinery and repairs on the mothership. The mothership (a World War II Landing Ship Tank) housed the RPBs, their crews, and two supporting UH1 helicopters, and kept the navigation of the river open.

  • This month I think it proper to feature some information provided to me by Bill McLean from Moultrie, Ga.  I met Bill several months ago when he stopped by the Wakulla Historical Society Museum in Crawfordville while researching a large boat which was apparently beached and abandoned on the banks of the Ochlockonee River on the Franklin County side of the bridge at U.S. Highway 319.


    No, the Sassy Strippers are not a group of exotic dancers.
    They are a quilting group that meets every Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. to make quilts for traumatized children.
    “Stripping” is a term for a part of the quilting process, Kay Roberts explains. One of the women in the group calls herself The Sassy Lady, and these terms combined to create the name “Sassy Strippers Quilters.”

    of Wakulla Springs

    It’s my loss. You know how you meet people who are at once friendly and easy to talk to. 
    They strike a chord with your values and emote a concern for your well being. 
    John Ahler is one of those people.
    The sad news is that John, who has faithfully served at Wakulla Springs for 20 years, is moving on to a new opportunity. 
    Of course, it is good news for him. He has been the lodge manager since 2006. 


    Wakulla High School alumnus Paul Lange is starring in the upcoming independent feature film “Maybe Tomorrow” by writer-director by Michael Wolfe.
    Lange graduated from Wakulla in 1991 and, after taking a few months off, enlisted in the U.S. Navy along with friend Chad Richardson. The two friends went to boot camp together in Orlando, and then Lange was shipped off to Japan, where he enjoyed traveling in Asia.

    Refuge Youth Ambassador

    The goal of an Eagle Scout project is to benefit an organization in the community other than the Boy Scouts.
    Boy Scout Luke Ponder, with Troop 4 out of St. Marks, focused his efforts on Eden Springs Nursing and Rehab Center in Crawfordville.
    After looking through several different service projects available in the county for his Eagle Scout project, Ponder, 17, learned of one that involved fixing up the outside area at Eden Springs.

    Special to The News

    Years ago, when I was a senior at Wakulla High School, my friend, Karen McKenzie, and I, would leave a class or two early, skip town and make our way to the Governor’s Square Mall. We were seniors and took ruthless advantage of this newly found freedom at every chance.
    One day, Karen was in one of her more depressive states, and all she wanted to do was go to the St. Marks Lighthouse for a moment to ‘breathe.’

  • After traveling to Wakulla County 20 years ago, Jesse Christiansen decided it was time to keep his promise to return.
    And earlier this year, he did just that.
    "Everybody in Crawfordville was so beautiful to me," Christiansen said. "They take you in."
    Christiansen came through Wakulla County in November 1988 on a Schwinn bicycle.
    He started in Anchorage, Alaska, and ended in Miami Beach, a 6,970-mile trip.

    Special to The News

    NOTE: Thank you to those who’ve offered kind words for the articles written these past few weeks. I dedicate this last Black History Month installment to my grandmother who would’ve celebrated her birthday this past week.

  • More than 30 years ago my grandmother and I would attend the Macedonia Church of Christ, in Buckhorn, on – what seemed like – a lifetime of Sundays, arriving in our beige and black Plymouth.
    I presently found myself underneath the shade of the old tree where she would park, turn off the car, adjust whatever fantastic ladies hat she’d decided on wearing, and prepare herself to enter the House of the Lord.

    Special to The News