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Many years ago — make that many, many years ago — I began struggling with that problem that has vexed parents for generations: Is there a Santa Claus?

In the unincorporated areas of Polk County, we are currently enjoying a 46-year low crime rate. You may have heard me mention that before, but it’s an awesome statistic — and one that really shows how great it is to live here.

There is one word in the American lexicon that is considered so vile that it is referred to only by its code name, “the N-word.”

“In the First Amendment, the Founding Fathers gave the free press the protection it must have to fulfill its essential role in our democracy. The press was to serve the governed, not the governors.” Those are the words written in 1971 by Judge Hugo Black in the 6-3 (New York Times Co. vs Uni…

My first acquaintance with banks came in elementary school in 1947 when I became a depositor in the Second Grade National Bank at Bartow Elementary School.

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Pictured is the original downtown Winter Haven Southern Railway Station. It was located about 100 feet west of the Times Square building. Now the area is parking, adjacent to South Central Park.

The photograph above is looking southeast at Fourth St. NW, circa 1915. The white building on the left is the Bonita Theatre, which was operated by the Ripley family. It burned to the ground that same year. Central Park is in the foreground.

Pictured is Fifth Street NW, looking south from the intersection of Pope Avenue and Avenue A NW. The Ford dealership was to the extreme right and the Grand Theatre is the white building adjacent. Central Park is on the left. Taken circa 1925, the photo is by Robert Dahlgren.

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) has just completed a month long campaign to raise awareness about hit-and-run crashes in the state of Florida, but we still need to get the word out that people need to remain on the scene of a crash.

This photograph of swimmers on a Lake Howard dock is noted with the date December 9, 1909. The family included hats with their stylish swimwear of the day. Six years later, efforts began to connect the lakes with a system of canals.

The year was 1957 and the popular television show “I’ve Got a Secret” and host Garry Moore headlined the Citrus Exposition. Pictured above, on the then roofless Lake Silver Amphitheatre, from left are: Durwood Kirby, Marion Lorne, Peter Lawford, Diana Dors, Garry Moore, Alan King, (newly dis…

Pictured is the Northgate Publix Store, as it looked when it opened in 1957. The mid-century modern arch to the right was removed when the shopping center expanded for the relocation of Rheineaurs women’s apparel (now the location of Badcock Home Furnishings).

It wasn’t all that long ago that January meant a huge celebration of citrus was just around the corner. Between 1924 and 2008, the celebration was known variously as the Orange Festival, Citrus Exposition and, finally, as the Citrus Showcase.

A law went into effect in 2019 that was intended to cut down on people who are texting on their cell phones while they’re driving on public roads.

The holiday season has come and gone, but let’s continue to be thankful and grateful for the simple things we are blessed with. Be grateful for time with family and friends. Let us be thankful for achieving the small successes in life.

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