First Friday Art Walk Returns March 2

The First Friday Art Walk returns to downtown Ocala Friday, March 2 from 6 to 9 p.m.

OCALA, Fla. (Feb. 19, 2018) – The First Friday Art Walk returns to downtown Ocala Friday, March 2 from 6 to 9 p.m. and will include the following special performances and activities:

  • 6 to 9 p.m. – Live music by Stephen Lopez on the main event stage located at the downtown square near the gazebo.
  • 7 p.m. – Contemporary dance performance by West Port High School’s MCCA (Marion County Center for the Arts) Dance Program.
  • 8 p.m. – Belly dancing performance by the Cairo Dancers
  • Free hands-on art activities for all ages will be provided throughout the event by the Appleton Museum of Art, Hospice of Marion County, Interfaith Emergency Services, Painting with a Twist, Marion County Public Library, Karate America Ocala, Animis Foundation and the Discovery Center.

[Read more…]

City Announces Changes to Metered Parking Downtown

OCALA, Fla. (Feb. 16, 2018) – The City of Ocala has implemented changes to its metered parking program downtown. These recommended modifications were made in response to feedback from citizens and downtown business owners and are intended to create more available on-street parking adjacent to, or in close proximity of, downtown businesses, according to City staff.

Adjustments to the parking program include:

  • All parking meters are now programmed for an additional hour of parking, for a total of three-hours.
  • Passport Parking has implemented three-hour parking for the pay-by-phone app.
  • Android Pay and Apple Pay have been installed on all parking meters.
  • An additional 11 free parking spaces have been created by removing meters on N Magnolia Avenue (between NE Second Street and NE Third Street) and on SW First Avenue, south of Fort King Street.
  • Installation of 39 free on-street parking spaces along sections of NE First Avenue and N Magnolia Avenue.

[Read more…]

After Dark in the Park 2018 Movie Series


  • Date:02/16/2018 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
  • Location:Martin Luther King Recreaion Complex
    1510 NW Fourth St., Ocala, Florida 34471

A koala impresario stages a gala singing competition in order to save his theater, and the contest attracts the attention of such musically inclined animals as a harried pig mom, a teenage gorilla, a shy elephant and a punk porcupine. Rated PG. Bring your own lawn chairs and blankets. No cost. This animated movie is great for the entire family.

Jim Kirk Park Dedication Ceremony Friday, Feb. 16 at 11 a.m.

A dedication ceremony will be held Friday, Feb. 16 at 11 a.m. for Jim Kirk Park.

OCALA, Fla. (Feb. 14, 2018) – A dedication ceremony will be held Friday, Feb. 16 at 11 a.m. for Jim Kirk Park. The ceremony will take place at the playground located at the 2900 block of NE Ninth Street.

In the 1960s and 1970s, Jim Kirk served as a City of Ocala councilman and then later as Mayor for three terms. He owned WMOP and WFUZ radio stations where he also hosted a morning show “Country Jim.” Mr. Kirk’s legacy to Ocala’s citizens also includes purchasing what is now the Marion Theater and gifting the building to the City. He was also a driving force behind the Appleton Museum of Art. Mr. Kirk, a 60-year resident of Ocala, passed away in 2015 at the age of 88. [Read more…]


MARION COUNTY, Florida (February 4, 2018)- At approximately 7:00 a.m. on Sunday, February 4, 2018, Marion County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) deputies were called to a residence located at 9895 SW 151st Place in the Florida Highlands in reference to a well-being check on a possibly suicidal/homicidal individual. When deputies arrived on scene, Paul Powell (DOB: 05/07/1968) made statements that made them concerned for his well-being and for the well-being of others.

Powell also made statements about being armed. In addition to this, deputies learned that Powell had an outstanding felony warrant for Domestic Battery. Powell refused to cooperate with law enforcement and would not exit his residence. The Ocala Police Department SWAT team and the MCSO Crisis Negotiations Team responded to assist and negotiators were able to establish communication with Powell. [Read more…]

Ocala Fire Rescue Joins Red Cross to Sound the Alarm About Fire Safety

(OCALA, Fla.) February 4, 2018 – Ocala Fire Rescue and the American Red Cross are joining forces once more, to Sound the Alarm about fire safety.

For a period of three days (January 28th-30th) Ocala Fire Rescue firefighters and Red Cross volunteers roamed the streets of The Villas at Spanish Oaks, mobile home park, as part of a door to door smoke detector installation canvass. Installing 144 smoke alarms in the three day period, the campaign was a huge success. Nonetheless, due to the size of the property, only a portion of the homes within the park were covered. Knowing the need that exists in the area, OFR and the Red Cross have scheduled another three day canvassing event. [Read more…]

Beginners Basic birding class

Oklawaha Valley Audubon Society of Lake County is hosting a beginners class on basic birding Sunday February 25th 2 -4 pm at Trout Lake Nature center  530 East  Cr 44. Eustis, Florida. Birding is the fastest growing activity in the US and Central Florida is a birding hot spot. Birding is a great activity because its inexpensive, easy, it connects people to nature and it can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it. Birding can be an individual hobby, a family activity, or a group event that can be done in your back yard, at a local wildlife refuge or an exotic international location Birding is  often combined with hiking, kayaking, photography and traveling so there is something for everyone. [Read more…]

SPRING CONCERT March 11, 2018

For centuries talented composers have been writing music that has brought many different genres to our world. This spring the On Top of the World Concert Chorus will present a performance focusing on the wonderful American composers that have also left their mark on the world of music and brought us styles that are uniquely American.  The concert entitled “All-American Classics” will be presented on Sunday, March 11, at 3:00 p.m. at Countryside Presbyterian Church, 7768 SW Highway 200, Ocala 34476, 352-237-4633. This concert will include a collection of well-known melodies by famous American composers. [Read more…]

Tuscawilla Park Playground Temporarily Closed for Maintenance

The playground at Tuscawilla Park, 500 NE Sanchez Ave., will be temporarily closed for maintenance beginning Monday, Feb. 5.

OCALA, Fla. (Feb. 2, 2018) – The playground at Tuscawilla Park, 500 NE Sanchez Ave., will be temporarily closed for maintenance beginning Monday, Feb. 5 and is expected to re-open to the public Wednesday, Feb. 7. The remaining areas of Tuscawilla Park will be open to the public during the temporary playground closure.

For more information, please contact the City of Ocala Recreation and Parks Department at 352-368-5517.



OCALA, Fla.-In Florida and throughout the U.S., flu activity is on the rise. Marion County is currently seeing moderate flu activity that is actively increasing. From Dec. 31, 2017, to Jan. 13, 2018, county hospitals and emergency rooms reported 265 confirmed cases of influenza, an average of 19 cases per day. In December, approximately 8 were confirmed each day.

“It’s important to see your health care provider if you become sick with flu-like symptoms,” said Florida Department of Health in Marion County Health Officer Mark Lander. “The flu can have serious consequences even for someone who has been very healthy previously.”

Health care providers can prescribe antiviral treatment if appropriate. Treatment is most effective when started within 48 hours, so calling as soon as you become ill is important, especially if you or your loved one is at a higher risk for complications. Children younger than 5, adults over the age of 65, pregnant women, and those with underlying medical conditions are considered most at-risk. [Read more…]