Communication Builds Our Community

Articles from the May 15, 2024 edition

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  • Work Begins on New ADS Manufacturing Plant

    Robert Connors|Updated Jun 11, 2024

    Construction has begun on the long-planned Advanced Drainage System manufacturing plant in Lake Wales. Work preparing the nearly 100-acre site east of South 11th Street is currently employing more than a dozen earth-moving machines, as well as surveyors and other crew. Meanwhile, Duke Energy workers are installing upgraded electrical service along Hunt Brothers Road to the site. The manufacturing building and associated offices could eventually cover 400,000 square feet and...

  • Ridge Brass to Offer Free Patriotic Memorial Day Concert At Lake Wales Arts Center

    Special to the News|Updated May 22, 2024

    A free patriotic concert on Memorial Day weekend will be offered to the public to mark the Memorial Day weekend. The Ridge Brass will offer "many familiar standbys of American music that will stir hearts to renewed love of our great country," said Arts Council spokesperson Carrie Ingley. The Ridge Brass was formerly known as the Lake Wales Brass Ensemble, and is familiar to many music-lovers in the area, having accompanied the Lake Wales Chorale at many past performances. Spon...

  • William Robert Simpkins, 1947-2024

    News Obituary Service|Updated May 19, 2024

    William Robert Simpkins, age 76, passed away on Saturday, May 11, 2024, at his home in Bartow, FL after a long courageous battle with Parkinson's Disease. He was born on November 8, 1947, in Millville, NJ to parents Janice and William. He graduated from Vineland High School in 1966 and completed his education at Warner University in Lake Wales, FL where he graduated in 2001 with a bachelor's degree. He served in the U.S. Naval Reserved from 1965-1967. He worked in law enforcem...

  • Slaton a Finalist for New Smyrna Beach Position, Gets High Marks From Treasure Island Commission in New Job Search

    Robert Connors|Updated May 18, 2024

    Lake Wales City manager James is among a group of five finalists and two alternates that have been winnowed from a long list of candidates being considered for the city manager's job there following a Thursday evening special meeting of the beach town's city commission. The discussion among that city's board focused on the mechanisms that will be employed in interviewing the candidates, some of whom come from distant states and will fly in to inte4rviews. Discussion within...

  • Crash With Injury Near McLaughlin School Reminder of Risks Everywhere

    News Staff Reports|Updated May 18, 2024

    Failure to yield the right-of-way resulted in a crash with injuries on 4th Street at the edge of the McLaughlin Middle/High School campus recently. The incident happened at approximately 6 p.m. after the school zone had cleared for the day. The incident happened when a vehicle driven by a woman identified by Lake Wales Police as Laken Taylor Upchurch was driving westbound on Grove Avenue in a 2019 Ford Expedition and "slowed" for a stop sign before entering the path of a 2004...

  • Sheriff's Investigators Help Solve 52-Year-Old Murder

    Scott Wilder|Updated May 17, 2024

    Polk County Sheriff's Office detectives have solved and closed a murder investigation that started 52 years ago in unincorporated Eloise. Detectives have identified the victim using advanced forensic genetic genealogy, and uncovered the two suspects responsible for the murder, both of whom are dead. On May 17, 1972, Polk deputies responded to a reported body found in a field just to the south of the canal between Lake Lulu and Lake Ship, and southeast of the US 17 overpass...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: A Brutal Look at a Divided Future: Alex Garland's Civil War

    Jennifer Nanek, News Film Critic|Updated May 15, 2024

    A frightening imagining of a Civil War among the states that could happen in the very near future, this movie stars Kirsten Dunst and is written and directed by Alex Garland. Garland cleverly sidesteps real-world political labels, focusing instead on the human cost of ideological division. The film paints a chilling picture of a future where regional alliances shift and violence becomes commonplace. Dunst is joined by a stellar cast, including Wagner Moura and Stephen...

  • Community Open-House to Focus on Economic Development

    Robert Connors|Updated May 14, 2024

    A community "open house" planned for Monday, May 20 will give area residents an opportunity to discuss key economic issues and and perceived opportunities that may help shape the future of Lake Wales. The five-hour "drop in" will be hosted by the Central Florida Regional Planning Council under a contract with the City of Lake Wales. Residents are invited to share their thoughts on the draft Economic Development Strategy and discuss the "identified goals, strategies, and next...

  • Substitute School Crossing Guards Sought

    Special to the News|Updated May 14, 2024

    The safety of children walking to and from area schools is the subject of an appeal for substitute crossing guards to fill in when demand arises. School Crossing Guard services are funded by the Polk County Board of County Commissioners. The vital program provides adult crossing guards at selected hazardous school crossings to ensure the safety of elementary school children walking to and from school. According to the Polk County Sheriff's Office, substitute school crossing...