http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/todaysnews/rss.xml en Community generous during service week http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/community-generous-during-service-week <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/photo_with_caption.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="118" height="85" /><p> The Cedar Key Lions Club recently completed a Worldwide Week of Service, joining with Lions around the globe for this community service project. In early January, Lion volunteers braved raw winds and cold temperatures to collect donations of food and clothing in front of the Cedar Key Post Office. At the same time, Lion volunteers coordinated donations at City Hall, Cedar Key Episcopal Church, Cedar Key Methodist Church and Cedar Key Baptist Church. The Lions served residents of Cedar Key well. The local results were impressive.</p> The raccoons did it (maybe) http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/raccoons-did-it-maybe-0 <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/spoonbill_secondary.asp_.jpg" alt="Roseate Spoonbills, which returned to nest on Seahorse Key several years ago, are among the species that fled the island last year. " title="Roseate Spoonbills, which returned to nest on Seahorse Key several years ago, are among the species that fled the island last year. " align="left" hspace="6" width="144" height="85" /><p> On April 19, 2015, the thousands of nests on Seahorse Key were occupied and the sounds of birds filled the air. Those feeding their broods brought in fish, some of which drooped from nests to be devoured by the cottonmouths that live below.</p> <p> &ldquo;They are very sloppy and they are a food source, a very large source of food for the cottonmouth which eats marine fish,&rdquo; said Coleman M. Sheehy III, a researcher on the island since 2001. &ldquo;The important thing is they eat the fish, not the birds.&rdquo;</p> <p> On April 21 Seahorse Key was quiet. No birds.</p> Good time was had at benefit dinner http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/good-time-was-had-benefit-dinner <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/img_4532.jpg" alt="Paul Moore waits in line to get a seat in the busy dining room. " title="Paul Moore waits in line to get a seat in the busy dining room. " align="left" hspace="6" width="113" height="85" /><p> Robinson&#39;s Restaurant in Rosewood was closed Sunday but you would have hardly known it as folks stood in line out to the parking lot to buy grouper dinners for a fundraiser for charter Capt. Phil Muldrow. All the food and desserts were donated and several hundred folks turned out &mdash; including snowbirds from as far away as Ontario, Canada, Wyoming and West Virginia.&nbsp;</p> Arts News http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/arts-news <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/image.png" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="68" height="85" /><p> Call goes out for entries in high flying show</p> <p> Entries for the Birds of a Feather open exhibit at the Arts Center should be dropped off upstairs at the Arts Center no later than 5:00pm, March 2. 2D &amp; 3D artwork accepted, to 3 pieces/artist, $5 per entry. Entry forms are available at the Arts Center. Prizes will be awarded at the Opening, March 5, from 5 to 7 p.m.</p> <p> Opening party sunny despite rain</p> Seahorse Key open on Saturday Feb. 20 http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/seahorse-key-open-saturday-feb-20 <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/screen_shot_2016-02-09_at_11.32.28_am.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="90" height="85" /><p> Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge is opening Seahorse Key to the public on Saturday, Feb. 20 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.</p> <p> Visitors to the island must provide their own transportation or buy a ticket on one of the tour boats.</p> <p> Bring your camera, fish a little, walk along the beach and enjoy the exhibits.</p> <p> A cast of period-dress volunteers will tell the history of the lighthouse on Seahorse Key, which sits atop the 54-foot tall dune, and offers great perspective for wildlife photography.</p> Doors open at 10 art-full homes on island http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/doors-open-10-art-full-homes-island <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/art-filled_home_exhibit_1.jpg" alt="" title="" align="left" hspace="6" width="114" height="85" /><p> Marine Science Symposium honors video stars http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/marine-science-symposium-honors-video-stars <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/img_4467.jpg" alt="Dr. Jack Payne, second from left, senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources at the University of Florida, honored the stars of &quot;Gator Good: The Cedar Keys Story.&quot; From left to right are Leslie Sturmer, UF IFAS Agent; Payne, Heath Davis, mayor and oysterman; Shawn Stephenson, clam farmer; Bobby Witt, clam farmer and Sue Colson, city commissioner and clam farmer." title="Dr. Jack Payne, second from left, senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources at the University of Florida, honored the stars of &quot;Gator Good: The Cedar Keys Story.&quot; From left to right are Leslie Sturmer, UF IFAS Agent; Payne, Heath Davis, mayor and oysterman; Shawn Stephenson, clam farmer; Bobby Witt, clam farmer and Sue Colson, city commissioner and clam farmer." align="left" hspace="6" width="278" height="85" /><p> <span style="line-height: 20.4px;">Dr. Jack Payne, second from left, senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources at the University of Florida, honored the stars of &quot;Gator Good: The Cedar Keys Story.&quot;</span></p> <p> From left to right are Leslie Sturmer, UF IFAS Agent; Payne, Heath Davis, mayor and oysterman; Shawn Stephenson, clam farmer; Bobby Witt, clam farmer and Sue Colson, city commissioner and clam farmer.&nbsp;</p> Personal essay http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/content/personal-essay <img src="http://www.cedarkeybeacon.com/sites/www.cedarkeybeacon.com/files/imagecache/thumb85/gate-manline_sm.jpg" alt="When they are closed, steel gates suffer damage. Most of the Refuge’s gates were vandalized when the flooded Mainline was unsafe to travel." title="When they are closed, steel gates suffer damage. Most of the Refuge’s gates were vandalized when the flooded Mainline was unsafe to travel." align="left" hspace="6" width="113" height="85" /><p> By Greg Lang</p> <p> The Lower Suwannee National Wildlife refuge and the Cedar Keys National &nbsp;Wildlife refuge are essential to the character of our region. They protect &nbsp;the healthy environment and abundant natural resources on which the local &nbsp;economy and residents&rsquo; lifestyles depend.</p> <p> In recent years, a dramatic increase in littering, vandalism, outright destruction, and illegal wildlife poaching have created serious challenges to their beauty and viability.</p>