July 9, 2008

Bird-Watchers, Sign Up for Survey

By Anita Hardin, The Orlando Sentinel, Fla.

Jul. 9--The Lake County Parks and Trails Division is seeking experienced bird-watching volunteers to help conduct a summer bird survey from 7 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the Ferndale Preserve off County Road 455 in south Lake.

Experienced birders must be able to identify most common birds by sight or sound and have their own binoculars and field guides. Volunteers who can identify butterflies and dragonflies also may participate.

"Last summer, we located 46 species, including yellow-billed cuckoo, white-eyed vireo, brown thrasher and northern bobwhite," said park ranger Gallus Quigley. "To date, 133 species have been observed in the preserve since December 2006."

The 192-acre Ferndale Preserve was purchased in 2005 through a partnership among the Lake County Commission, Lake County Water Authority, St. Johns River Water Management District and a Florida Communities Trust grant.

Plans for the property include hiking and equestrian trails, a scenic overlook, a canoe launch and a picnic pavilion.

Experienced bird-watchers can volunteer by calling 352-742-0992.

Joining water network

The Lake County Water Authority has started an e-mail network for residents who are interested in water issues that affect Lake County and who want to stay informed about water-authority projects.

The free e-mail network allows residents to ask questions of the authority or staff about lakes, lake levels, storm water, the NuRF facility that will treat water coming from Lake Apopka or rainfall concerns.

To join the network, call 352-343-3777, Ext. 0, or e-mail [email protected]

Church bazaar

First Baptist Hispanic Church of Clermont will have a fundraising bazaar from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at 498 Montrose St. to raise money to purchase a church building for Sunday services.

The sale will include toys, household goods, clothing and furniture. Hot dogs, hamburgers and baked goods also will be sold.

Back-to-school drive

Rotary International District 6980 and Office Depot are joining Give a Kid a Backpack in a school-supplies drive through Aug. 3, collecting materials for needy children in Lake, Sumter, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties.

Donation boxes have been placed in 22 Office Depots in those counties. The aim is to fill backpacks with pens, a pencil sharpener, pencils and erasers, a pack of paper, folders and rulers.

To find out more about how you can help, go to rotary district6980.com/ or giveakid abackpack.org.

New office for Democrats

The South Lake Democratic Club will celebrate the opening of an office in Minneola from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

The group decided to open an office at 214 E. Washington St., two blocks east of U.S. Highway 27, after increased interest from the community about the organization's services, said Minneola City Council member Joe Teri, one of about 30 club members.

The Democrats used to meet at the Kehlor Building on West Minneola Avenue in Clermont.

The club meets the first Wednesday of every month.

Read at Eustis library

Here's the schedule for the free summer reading programs at the Eustis Memorial Library, 120 N. Center St. Each presentation starts at 10 a.m.

*Thursday -- Fun and magic with Sammy Smith.

*Friday -- The Ronald McDonald Show.

*July 18 -- Trout Lake Nature Center's "wild invaders from around the world."

The end-of-the-summer party and reading contest awards will be at 10:30 a.m. July 25 for children registered in the summer program. Chick-fil-A will cater.

Details: 352-357-0896 or 352-357-5686 or eustismemorial library.org.

Mail community news to the Orlando Sentinel, 1898 E. Burleigh Blvd., Tavares, FL 32778-4366, fax 352-742-5938 or e-mail [email protected]


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