Top Stories

‘L'dor v'dor:’ Second generation Holocaust survivor shares story of father’s resilience

ORANGE PARK -- Friday, Jan. 27, was International Holocaust Remembrance Day, marking the 78th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi German concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz by Soviet …

The beat goes on …

CLAY COUNTY – Jim Market was given a second shot at life when he collapsed from a left arterial descending heart attack – commonly known as the widowmaker – two years ago in the Baptist Oakleaf …

Focus on transparency: Orange Park Police officers wearing body-worn cameras

ORANGE PARK – If you’re caught speeding or just need directions, interactions with Orange Park Police Department officers are now being recorded. The agency became the first in Clay County to …

Banjo Brown jamming to his own musical following

CLAY COUNTY – After strumming a deafening rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” with a Southern Rock-style spin ahead of the Jacksonville-Tennessee game, Paul Wane became the center of …

Orange Park, Green Cove Springs celebrate Arbor Day

CLAY COUNTY – Officials from Orange Park and Green Cove Springs planted trees on Friday, Jan. 20, to celebrate Arbor Day. In Orange Park, Mayor Randy delivered official opening remarks Rob Bradley …

Paul Wane’s guitar solo leads to ‘whirlwind’ of opportunities

FLEMING ISLAND – Paul Wane is used to being on stage and in the spotlight. But he’s equally at home talking with children about playing music. Wane gained national notoriety with a blistering …

VA Clinic re-named after Middleburg’s Chief Kenneth Baker

MIDDLEBURG – Chief Petty Officer Andrew “Drew” Baker had to stop several times Tuesday when he talked about his father Andrew K. Baker. At one point, his emotions were so shaken, the …

‘Just a miracle”: Wolfson Challenge fuel huge success stories for tiny children like Richard

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Richard Solomon Jr. is a squirmy bundle of joy. He bobbed up and down excitedly on his mother's lap, gazing around Spring Park Coffee with curiosity. He babbled something that …

Loud and proud: Local guitarist Paul Wane rocks National Anthem ahead of Jaguars game

CLAY COUNTY – Paul Wane’s 47-year music career came down to a 90-second performance last Saturday in the final regular season game for the Jacksonville Jaguars. And the guitarist from …

Clay County Agricultural Fair wants to know ...

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – The Clay County Agriculture Fair wants its fans to put down the giant turkey legs, jumbo Teddy bears and deep-fried sticks of butter and grab a pen to nominate this year’s …

Mercy Villages to offer housing support, life skills for those in need

MIDDLEBURG – Mercy is developing an apartment-style campus offering provisional housing to those in need. The village will comprise 65 units that will house their Family and Student …

Green Cove Springs City Manager earns high grade in annual evaluation

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – While the city council gave City Manager Steve Kennedy an outstanding grade of 4.9 out of 5 in his annual evaluation Tuesday night, Kennedy already was looking ahead to …

Re-opening of Grumpy’s puts loyal customers in great mood

MIDDLEBURG – The minutes before Grumpy’s Restaurant was scheduled to re-open were filled with frenzied activity inside the popular eatery. There were menus to place on tables, food to be prepped, …
Colonel Marvin Albert Mollnow   Colonel Marvin Albert Mollnow peacefully passed away, January 13, 2023 at his home in Green Cove Springs, Florida, surrounded by his loving family.  He was …
Anthony Allan Massey Anthony Allan Massey, 19, of Orange Park, Florida, passed away December 31, 2022 in Palm Bay, Florida. Born on January 2, 2003 in Ennis, Texas, after graduating …
Mildred “Betty” Elizabeth Bryant Tucker Mildred “Betty” Elizabeth Bryant Tucker, age 77, passed away on Saturday, January 7th, 2023, and is now with the Lord. She was …
Dorris N. StidhamDorris N. Stidham, 92, of Orange Park Florida passed away peacefully on Friday December 30, 2022, surrounded by his loving family. He was born to Rosevelle and Bess Stidham on May 5, …
Catherine Marie AlfordCatherine Marie Alford passed away peacefully on December 20, 2022, just days before her 78th birthday. She was born on December 23, 1944, in Grand Rapids, Michigan to the late …
Special Sections

Badcock Furniture Green Cove Springs

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Badcock Furniture Green Cove Springs

We believe home is a sacred space that should feel just right and just like YOU. If you find yourself facing a design dilemma or comfort crisis, your neighbors at Badcock Home Furniture &more can help! No matter your age or stage in life, we’ve got the service, selection, prices, and financing options you need to create a comfortable and safe refuge. On the Badcock Home Furniture &more Facebook page, we want to connect with YOU. We encourage you to share your feedback and interact with fellow Badcock fans! Need to contact Customer Service? Visit www.badcock.com or call us at 1-800-223-2625.

In the Community

150 Years and counting: Mt. Zion AME Church celebrates with rebuilding plan for next 150 years

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Rev. James Pernell stood in the parking lot of the Mt. Zion AME Church shortly after last Sunday’s sermon and his mind wandered in several directions. Behind him was the …

Oakleaf's Deuschle to join 38 others at Eagle Scout induction ceremony

OAKLEAF – Ean Deuschle's first idea for his Eagle Scout project was to create a display to commemorate Orange Park Elementary's 100th anniversary. But when the school didn't show much interest in …

Love of water, Jesus leads to creation of Saltwater Gospel in Orange Park

ORANGE PARK – Shawn Moss is an agent at Florida Farm Bureau Insurance in Middleburg, but when he’s not in the office, you’ll likely either find him doing one of two things: reading his Bible or …

Volunteers spruce up Daystar Center at Dye-Clay YMCA

ORANGE PARK – When the community is full of bad news about teenagers, there is good news. Twenty teenagers and adults from Hibernia Baptist Church volunteered recently at the Dye-Clay YMCA’s …

121 Financial Credit Union opens Orange Park branch

ORANGE PARK – Anyone looking for an auto loan won’t have to go far since 121 Financial Credit Union opened on 6801 Blanding Blvd. The new branch incorporates more technology and improves member …

Benefield announces candidacy to keep OP Council seat

ORANGE PARK – Municipal Super Tuesday on April 11 will offer voters in four Clay County townships important choices. One of those choices will be Doug Benefield, who wants to keep Seat 1 on the …

Local boat sales continue to hit high-water marks since COVID shutdowns

JACKSONVILLE – Following the national lockdown due to COVID-19, boat sales skyrocketed in Clay County in 2021, remained steady in 2022,and could be in store for another rise this year, multiple …

BallHawker, Challenge Enterprises turn wayward golf shots into successful endeavor

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Challenge Enterprises of North Florida and BallHawker have partnered together to recover and recycle golf balls to bring a positive impact to the environment and waterways in …

County to address development during workshops on Feb. 6-7

Clay County leaders are holding a series of workshops to discuss updates to the Land Development Code. They’ll be held on Feb. 6-7 at the County Administration Building, 477 Houston St., in …

HCA Florida Orange Park Hospital one of America’s Top 250

ORANGE PARK – HCA Florida Orange Park Hospital has been named America’s Best 250 Hospitals according to Healthgrades, a leading resource that connects consumers, physicians and health systems. …

‘Undulation’ sculpture to inspire, heal patients at Baptist Clay

FLEMING ISLAND – Mia Pearlman found inspiration for her sculpture “Undulation” from the county’s greatest resource – water. She quickly envisioned fish swimming through rippling water. She …

BCC, NFLT continue push to expand conservation footprint

GREEN COVE SPRINGS – While still in an exploratory stage, the Board of County Commissioners and North Florida Land Trust continued to examine ways to create and fund a conservation lands program …

Orange Park Council keeps green light on red light cameras

ORANGE PARK – Video-taped red light cameras in Orange Park have led to fines for many residents of the town, but the videos also have provided an additional level of safety for the town.The …

Municipalities, county leaders address problems, successes that come with growth

ORANGE PARK – Keystone Heights Mayor Karen Lake had to drive 31 miles on Wednesday, Jan. 18, to attend the Clay County Chamber of Commerce’s annual State of Clay at the Thrasher-Horne …

Residents push back on plans for Wawa at Village Square Parkway

FLEMING ISLAND – Plans for a new Wawa to be built at Fleming Island Shoppes drew a sharp backlash from both neighbors and members of the Fleming Island Plantation community during a public …

Faith walk: Serenity Prayer

Proverbs 23:26 says, “O my son, give me your heart. May your eyes take delight in following my ways.”Many know the Serenity prayer: or think they do! The prayer is attributed to American …

Faith walk: LYBY: Obedience is the Key

If you want to live your best life, two things are essential: 1. Do the right thing, and 2. Grow in godly wisdom and apply it. If you stick to these two simple rules in your life, you can’t go …

Faith Walk: Live your Best Life: Don’t try to Control Things

In our busy world, it’s easy to feel out of control. We are constantly rushing from one thing to the next just trying to keep up. The fact is we can’t have total control of very much in our …

Sports
I didn’t know Glenn Matsuki well. He was a roommate of John, my significant other’s older brother. We met a couple of times when they visited Nancy, but we soon learned we had a unique …
The Florida Department of Corrections is still dealing with staffing shortfalls and legislators in the Senate and House are hearing. The Senate Criminal Justice Committee, the House Justice …
This is the time of year Jacksonville Jaguars fans are usually mulling over who should be the first-round draft pick. Now we don’t know … or care. Winning changes everything. In one of the …
Reader disgusted with litterbugs, trash around countyEditor:Have you ever noticed the trash all over clay county? My family and I have lived here in Clay County since 1985. What I noticed immediately …
In anticipation of Martin Luther King Day’s celebration, I'm pleased to share this personal reflection. It was late August,1963. I was 12. I remember my father calling me into his room. The …

Carter in it to win it

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - Keystone Heights High girls basketball coach Jessica Sykes=Carter may have one more rabbit in her hat as the district basketball tournaments ramp up and her Lady Indians look to …

District 2-5A Girls Basketball

ORANGE PARK - Ridgeview High girls basketball has unleashed the Blocton aura on to the 2023 season and the result has been a strong presence in the district 2-5A lineup that opens Tuesday with the …

Lady Knights set to fire up districts

OAKLEAF - Oakleaf High's girls basketball team; with the now-four Amigas; Kaylah Turner, Fantasia James, Kamiya Jones and Trista Brown, playing about as furious a game as coach Fred Cole could ask …

Girls District Soccer

NEPTUNE BEACH - Fleming Island High girls soccer got a sterling goalie performance from a new face and a single shot on goal by senior Katy Tamares was enough to withstand a second half blitzkrieg by …

Bauman bounce beats Fleming Island

FLEMING ISLAND - Oakleaf High center forward Evan Bauman found himself looking at a loose ball in front of the Fleming Island goal and just took a step and fired it into the net to give the Knights' …

Strength in Numbers

ORANGE PARK - Keystone Heights High's girls weightlifting team has a good role model to try and emulate with the boys team twice in two years the Class 1A team champions."I'm sure they talk to each …

Reynolds tabbed to lead 2023 Indian football

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - Keystone Heights High School football has named a familiar face to lead the Indians football program with defensive coordinator Steven Reynolds being named to head the program …

Lady Panthers right the ship with a win

ORANGE PARK - After a pair of losses, Monday to Oakleaf, and Tuesday to St. Johns Country Day, the Ridgeview Lady Panthers knew it was time to right the ship and get back to their winning ways. The …
The Clay County YMCA – For A Better Community

First Coast YMCA-One Number Different

The Y is a powerful association of men, women and children from all walks of life joined together by a shared passion: to strengthen the foundations of community. With a focus on youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the Y nurtures the potential of every youth and teen, improves the nation’s health and well-being and provides opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Please visit the YMCA blog to stay up to date on their latest news!

Good Deeds, Memories and Briefs
SJR State library named after Rep. Cliff Stearns
ORANGE PARK – The Honorable Clifford B. Stearns’ profound love for reading, knowledge and progress led him to gift to St. Johns River State College Foundation $300,000, “the largest donation …
VyStar Donates $31,000 with high school debit card give back program
FLEMING ISLAND – VyStar Credit Union held a ceremony Wednesday, Jan. 25, to celebrate the first year of its High School Debit Card Give Back Program and announce an overall donation of $31,061.15 …
SJR State College to hold financial aid, FAFSA event
ORANGE PARK – St. Johns River State College will present “FASFA Frenzy,” a free workshop assisting in applying for financial aid, at its campus on College Drive. “Finances should not be a …
Scholarships 2/2/23
Vietnam Veterans of America to award pair of $1,500 scholarshipsCLAY COUNTY – Vietnam Veterans of America Col. William G. Byrns Clay County Chapter 1059 is offering two $1,500 scholarships to …
Garden Club of Orange Park encourages feeding birds
ORANGE PARK – In 1994, Congressman John Porter established February as National Bird Feeding Month due to the harsh conditions endured during one of the coldest months of the year. Thankfully, …
What's going on: Clay County Calendar of Events
CELEBRATING BLACK HISTORY MONTH THROUGH MUSIC: will be on Feb. 4 at 4 p.m. at the Congressional Holiness Church, 2079 State Road 16 in Orange Park. For more information, visit friends@fasacc.org or …
Community Briefs 1/26/23
Veterans encouraged to attend Pact Act forum on FridayGREEN COVE SPRINGS – Are you a military veteran, or do you have one in your family?The Clay County Veterans' Services Office is holding a …
Women business owners optimistic about future
Even as they ride out inflationary pressures, supply chain disruptions and economic uncertainty, women owners and executives of small and mid-size majority-women-owned businesses have an optimistic …
This Week In History 1/26/23
Five years ago, 2018 • Joe Arthur Turner of Keystone Heights is arrested and charged with murder and sexual battery of Jordan Cooper, a woman with intellectual disabilities.• More than 95% …
Crime News

Arrests & Bookings 2/2/23

(Name, age, location of arrest, charges). Key: FTA-Failure to Appear; DWLSR-Driving Without a License-Suspended or Revoked; DUI-Driving Under the Influence; VOP-Violation of Probation; BAL-blood …

Police Briefs 2/2/23

Jacksonville man arrested for impregnating 16-year-old girl JACKSONVILLE – a 28-year-old Jacksonville man was arrested after the Clay County Sheriff’s Office determined he impregnated a …

Arrests & Bookings 1/26/23

(Name, age, location of arrest, charges). Key: FTA-Failure to Appear; DWLSR-Driving Without a License-Suspended or Revoked; DUI-Driving Under the Influence; VOP-Violation of Probation; BAL-blood …

Police Briefs 1/26/23

Wanted man caught with array of drugs, illegal gunsGREEN COVE SPRINGS – An alert Clay County Sheriff’s Office deputy who recognized a man with an outstanding warrant for violation of …

Arrests & Bookings 1/19/23

(Name, age, location of arrest, charges). Key: FTA-Failure to Appear; DWLSR-Driving Without a License-Suspended or Revoked; DUI-Driving Under the Influence; VOP-Violation of Probation; BAL-blood …

Police Brief 1/19/23

CCSO: Man jailed after attempting a carjacking on Wells Road ORANGE PARK – A man was arrested for trying to carjack another man at a convenience store on Wells Road on Jan. 14.Rad Dziedzic, 35, …

Arrests & Bookings 1/12/23

(Name, age, location of arrest, charges). Key: FTA-Failure to Appear; DWLSR-Driving Without a License-Suspended or Revoked; DUI-Driving Under the Influence; VOP-Violation of Probation; BAL-blood …