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98 road work: The road work in Destin seems like it will never end, and for some businesses, it has affected them big time. According to The Destin Log,several businesses have felt major financial impacts from the ongoing construction and delays, including a car wash that had its entrances turned into dirt roads. Click here to read their frustrations.
Chili Cook-off: Twin Cities Pavilion in Niceville has received a $1,551 donation to help pay for a new air conditioner. According to Niceville.com, the funds were raised at a Chili Cook-off event sponsored by LJ Schooners Dockside Restaurant & Oyster Bar at Bluewater Bay Marina Complex. Click here to read more.
Them Chevys: The Okaloosa County School District recently bought 9 new Chevy Malibus for their driver’s-ed program. According to the NWFDN, the vehicles will be distributed throughout the district. When I took driver’s-ed at FWBHS, we had a used Chevy Impala and a Ford Taurus. I preferred driving the Impala.Click here to see pics of the cars.
$50,000: Fresh off of the news that Destin High School is now taking student enrollment applications for the 2020 school year, the charter school has just announced a large donation. Mills Heating & Air gave a generous $50,000 donation to the Governing Board. The school’s Trades Classroom will be named in their honor. The new school is slated to open in August, 2020, initially to 9th and 10th graders.
Meigs Middle School teacher arrested for inappropriate conduct with student
The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office has charged a Meigs Middle School teacher with two felonies after an investigation which began on December 11, 2019.
Joseph Michael Sparks, 48, was arrested for Failure to Report Suspected Child Neglect and Unlawful Relationships between Teachers and Students after an attentive parent discovered Sparks was involved in sending/receiving inappropriate text communications with one of his 13-year old students.
According to the arrest report, the victim’s cell phone revealed hundreds of text messages between the two. The messages detailed:
- The personal relationship as being intimate and romantic in nature.
- Discussions of how they loved each other.
- The victim told Sparks how she drank alcohol and took medications to harm herself.
But Sparks worried: The teacher told the student on multiple occasions to delete the text messages to prevent anyone from finding out. He also worried about her friends reporting it to law enforcement.
Tik Tok: Sparks admitted to investigators that over the Thanksgiving break he saw a video of the victim dancing in a Tik Tok video. He then asked the victim to send him a picture of her in her underwear.
According to the OCSO, the Okaloosa County School District has provided its full support and cooperation with the investigation.
More information will be released as it becomes available. This is an active and ongoing investigation at this time. The Okaloosa County School District has provided its full support and cooperation with the investigation.
A few Holiday Events happening along the Emerald Coast this weekend
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The South Walton Witches are back, but this time it’s for a Holiday Sleigh Ride. This Friday, December 13th the witches are meeting up bright and early – 6 AM – to cruise on their bikes from Gulf Place down to Butler Elementary in their most festive attire. They’ll wave the kids into school and once the bell rings, they’ll ride back to Gulf Place to enjoy a breakfast at Perfect Pig. If you want to participate, it’s $25 per person and you’ll need to bring your own bike.
If you’re a Glee fan, you’ll definitely want to attend Sinfonia Gulf Coast’s Holiday Pops concert this Friday, December 13th. The concert features Matthew Morrison, known as Mr. Schue from the Fox hit show, but he’s also been on MAJOR stages like Broadway’s production of Hairspray. He’ll be performing some of your favorite broadway and holiday hits at Village Church in Destin starting at 7:30 pm. Tickets start at $29.50 per person and VERY limited seats remain.
A Fort Walton family tradition, the Northgate neighborhood luminaries are happening this Saturday and Sunday night starting after dark. You can cruise through this incredibly festive neighborhood to see all the beautiful homes decorated for the season. Many have dancing lights that coordinate to music when you tune in on your car’s radio. The event is free to attend!
The Grayt Santa Pub Crawl is this happening this Saturday, December 14th starting at 1 pm. They will start the party at 1 pm at Hurricane Oyster Bar and will hop around to multiple bars in Grayton Beach including Grayton Seafood, Hibiscus and AJ’s. Each location will have live music or a DJ. As always, they will have their naughty and nice costume contest – so you need to bring your holiday attire A game. Transportation is provided between each spot and the party will end back at Hurricane Oyster Bar. The event is benefiting Gulf Therapy, which is a community paddle board group that tackles mental health issues. Tickets are $65 per person.
The Destin Boat Parade is celebrating its 33rd year on the harbor and festivities will be happening ALL DAY on Sunday, December 15th. All of the businesses along the harbor will each have exciting things going on Santa will be on the HarborWalk Village stage for photos from 1-4, The Boathouse is doing their DOCK the halls party starting at 1, and of course, AJ’s will have live music. The boats will start the parade after dark and a fireworks show will finish the night.
Ok, that’s all I have for you today. Hope you have a great Friday and I will see you next week!
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