Residents witness demolition of a bit of bittersweet Villages’ history

A crew demolishes the El Santiago Club restaurant.

A handful of residents gathered Friday morning to witness the demolition of a bit of Villages history.The old El Santiago Club restaurant is being remembered as a friendly spot for karaoke, refreshing cocktails and tasty food.The beach-themed restaurant closed more than two years ago.The demolition will make room for the new El Santiago … [Read more...]

Native Plant Garden Ecosystems are catching on among Villagers

Susan Turnipseed took inventory of the Florida-friendly raffle plants on hand.

The new, action-oriented , Villages chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, held its fourth regular meeting on Friday afternoon at the Big Cypress Rec Center. The club's raison d'etre is to educate residents about the benefits of native flora and provide resources for those who wish to add native Florida plant species to their lawns and … [Read more...]

Foster, Marquis winners in rain-shortened Villages Golf Championship

Bill Foster and Cathleen Marquis hold their trophies won in the Villages Golf Championship.

Bill Foster and Cathleen Marquis were crowned the 2015 men's and women's  winners at the Villages Golf Championship, after Friday's rain shortened the event.It was Marquis' second championship, following up on her win in 2013. It was Foster's first championship.The men's and women's championship flights teed off between noon and 2 p.m. at … [Read more...]

Villager arrested after leading police officer on 100 mph chase

Leondra McMahan

A Village of De La Vista man was arrested after leading a law enforcement officer on a chase at a speed of more than 100 miles per hour.A Howey in the Hills police officer was investigating a report of a suspicious vehicle at 10:20 p.m. Tuesday when he spotted the vehicle drive through two stop signs and onto private property through a yard, … [Read more...]

51-year-old Lady Lake man arrested on methamphetamine charge

Robert Levandoski

A 51-year-old Lady Lake man was arrested Thursday on a charge of possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell.Robert William Levandoski was driving at 7:45 p.m. on State Road 44 and not wearing a seatbelt when he was pulled over by a Lake County sheriff's deputy.He appeared "unusually nervous," according to the deputy's … [Read more...]

Wildwood Kitchen and Bath employee arrested with fraudulent credit cards

Jorge Emilio Alonso Hernadez

An employee of Wildwood Kitchen and Bath was arrested Wednesday on multiple felony charges after he allegedly used fraudulent credit cards to purchase and resell fuel.The Department of Homeland Security contacted the Wildwood Police Department to inform officers that Jorge Emilio Alonso Hernadez, 26, of Ocala was suspected of using the … [Read more...]

Automobile travels quarter of mile down golf cart path in The Villages

A golf cart and automobile meet Thursday morning on the golf cart path near Turtle Mound.

An automobile driver traveled more than a quarter of a mile down a golf cart path at about 11:30 a.m. Thursday in The Villages before a golf cart driver stopped and redirected the vehicle.The car made the unintentional trip down the golf cart path near Turtle Mound golf course off County Road 466A.Those who observed the incident believed … [Read more...]

Retired teacher exuberant in supporting roles in ‘The Music Man’

Karen Martin in "The Music Man."

I was sitting in the Savannah Center on opening night of “The Music Man” Tuesday watching the famed number, “Seventy-Six Trombones.” Like most of the audience, I was focused on John Rogerson’s vocal as Harold Hill.But I kept noticing a woman in back of Rogerson and to his left. She wore a beige Indian costume, with a dark green headband with a … [Read more...]

Form filed each year by O’Toole clearly showed Take Stock in Children pay

Marlene O'Toole

A detailed form dutifully filed each year by State Rep. Marlene O'Toole, clearly showed that she was being paid by Take Stock in Children.The Florida Commission on Ethics recently found that O’Toole did not disclose her dual role as an employee of the non-profit and as vice chair of the House Education Appropriations Committee that approved $6 … [Read more...]

The Villages Regional Hospital honored as ‘a great place to work’

The Villages Regional Hospital

Becker’s Hospital Review has published the 2015 edition of its 150 great places to work in healthcare in the United States and Central Florida Health Alliance (CFHA) – parent company of Leesburg Regional Medical Center, The Villages Regional Hospital and Leesburg Rehabilitation Hospital – made the cut.The organizations featured on the list were … [Read more...]

Fruitland Park backyard gun range located near elementary school

Richard Dickinson's backyard gun range.

Richard Dickinson has a gun range in his Fruitland Park backyard. For a gun range, it’s as safe as he could build it. Two dozen railroad ties, five yards of dirt, a target angled toward the ground and a ‘field of fire’ restricted by old tires and a 50-gallon drum.He even applied for a city building permit.Trouble is, Dickinson’s backyard is … [Read more...]

Grandparents can obtain tickets for Camp Villages Easter Week events

Camp Villages Easter Bunny

Grandparents will want to make sure to secure tickets for Camp Villages Easter Week. The wildly popular program offered through the Villages Recreation Department will take place from March 30 to April 2. Activities include an Easter Egg Hunt, Golf Car Scavenger Hunt, Field Games at Soaring Eagle and Saddlebrook softball complexes and Easter … [Read more...]

Live Oaks Community Church issues Palm Sunday invitation

Live Oaks Pastor Chris Holck and his wife, Kathleen.

Live Oaks Community Church is inviting members of the community to a special  Palm Sunday celebration this Sunday in a large tent on their future ministry site, just north of the Buffalo Ridge Wal-Mart on County 66.The service begins at 10 a.m."Everyone is invited to attend and hear about the future plans to develop a 25 acre parcel into a … [Read more...]

Foster maintains lead, Salute falls to 3rd in Villages Golf Championship

Bill Foster warms  up.

In the men's division of The Villages Golf Championship on Wednesday Bill Foster maintained his place at the top of the list with a one-over par 73, for a combined two day total of 143.Foster had a few bad breaks on the final couple of holes."That's golf. I made some putts I probably shouldn't have so things seem to equal out," Foster … [Read more...]

Lady Lake man accused of stealing his grandfather’s firearms

Raymond Hertzfeld

A 27-year-old Lady Lake man was jailed after he allegedly stole guns from his 76-year-old grandfather to fuel his drug habit.Raymond Francis Hertzfeld III was taken into custody Tuesday by Lady Lake police officers.He is alleged to have taken 12 firearms, ammunition and a leather holster all with a value of $8,120.Hertzfeld was reported … [Read more...]