Mayor's Fitness Challenge starts
Residents who may be losing steam on their 2013 resolutions may find incentive in a $1,000 cash prize.
The City of New Smyrna Beach will kick off its third annual Mayor's Fitness Challenge from 3-7 p.m., Monday, Jan. 28, at the Brannon Center, 105 S. Riverside Drive, New Smyrna Beach.
On the first night, participants take part in a seminar that will help them succeed in the program. Boot camp classes will be at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. The Saturday events are a sampling of various cardiovascular exercises.
The 10-week self-improvement contest is designed to motivate participants to improve their overall wellness. Baseline measurements will be taken on each person's blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, body fat and body weight. Those measurements will be repeated April 20 at the end of the challenge.
A $99 entry fee covers both assessments, seminars, 10 boot camp classes, and 10 Saturday events. For an additional $26, members of a team will get a personal healthy lifestyles coach.
Students may register for $75.
Advanced registration is suggested but is not required. Applications are online at www.themayorsfitnesschallenge.com.
For more information, call the New Smyrna Beach Recreation Department at (386) 424-2175.
Flu shots available at health department
The Volusia County Health Department is offering flu vaccines at its health centers in Daytona Beach, DeLand, New Smyrna Beach and Deltona.
The prices are $25 for flu, $45 for high-dose flu zone (65 and older) and $65 for pneumonia. Medicare Part B, non-HMO, is accepted.
Health Department locations are:
Daytona Beach, 1845 Holsonback Drive.
New Smyrna Beach, 7171 W. Canal St.
DeLand, 935 N. Spring Garden Ave.
Deltona, 3151 Howland Blvd.
For more information, visit volusiahealth.com.
AAUW meeting set
The New Smyrna Beach American Association of University Women will meet at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, at the Smyrna Yacht Club, 1201 S. Riverside Drive.
This month's speakers will be member Susi Jones and former member Pam Anderson, who will talk about their recent trip to Jerusalem.
The cost for the luncheon and program is $17.
For reservations, call (386) 423-5278.
Cultural Council to meet Jan. 25
The Cultural Council of Volusia County will meet at 9 a.m. Friday, Jan. 25, at the Artists' Workshop of New Smyrna Beach, 540 Barracuda Ave., New Smyrna Beach.
Members will discuss the Cultural Council's programs and upcoming activities. The public is invited to participate in the meeting.
For more information, call (386) 736-5963, Ext. 15872.
Agility trials slated
The Obedience Club of Daytona will conduct its annual four-day dog agility trials from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25, to Monday, Jan. 28, at the Silver Sands Bridle Club, 625 Tomoka Farms Road, New Smyrna Beach.
The dog can be an AKC breed or a mixed breed.
No dogs are allowed on the grounds unless entered in the trial.
Participants should bring a chair. Food vendors will be on hand.
For more information, call (386) 761-1095.
Spaghetti dinner planned
The New Smyrna Beach CAPS 14th annual spaghetti dinner will be from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, at New Smyrna Beach High School.
Advance tickets are $5. Tickets may be purchased at Ocean Properties, Winn-Dixie and the high school, all in New Smyrna Beach, and Chick-fil-A in Edgewater. Tickets at the door are $6. The Cuda Achievers Award Ceremony will be at 10:30 a.m.
Chowder festival slated in New Smyrna
The New Smyrna Beach Chowder Festival will take over Flagler Avenue from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 27.
Featuring more than 20 chowders, the progressive chowder cook-off will take place inside sponsor locations along the avenue. The event is co-sponsored by the Flagler Avenue Merchants and the New Smyrna Beach Moose Lodge and benefits the Florida Sheriff's Youth Camp in Barberville.
For more information, visit partyonflagler.com
Driver safety class planned
An AARP driver safety class will be held from 9 a.m. to noon, Monday, Feb. 4, and Tuesday, Feb. 5, at Coronado Community United Methodist Church, 201 S. Peninsula Ave., New Smyrna Beach.
The cost is $12 for members and $14 for non-members. Reservations with instructors are required.
To register, call (386) 427-7373.
Cultural Council schedules workshops for grant applicants
The Cultural Council of Volusia County will conduct two workshops for organizations wishing to apply for a Volusia County Community Cultural Grant.
The workshops will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 29, in the third-floor conference room of the Volusia County Lifeguard Headquarters, 515 S. Atlantic Ave., Daytona Beach; and 2 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30, in the first-floor training rooms of the of the Thomas C. Kelly Administration Center, 123 W. Indiana Ave., DeLand.
To be eligible, organizations must send a representative to one of the workshops.
Applications must be delivered to Volusia County's Parks, Recreation and Culture office at 202 N. Florida Ave., DeLand, by 5 p.m. April 26. In June, the Cultural Council will review and score the grant applications to provide recommendations to the Volusia County Council.
For more information, call (386) 736-5953, Ext. 15872, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Run with the Ranger 5K Run set
The 4th Annual "Run with the Ranger 5K Run and Walk" will be at 9 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, at Canaveral National Seashore.
The course begins and ends on the historic Eldora loop road in the National Seashore.
Entry fees for the 5K are $20 per youth younger than 18, $25 per person or $65 for a team of four for pre-registration.
Day of race registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. for an additional $5 fee.
Participants may register online at active.com or at friendsofcanaveral.org. Forms can be picked up at Coronado Elementary, New Smyrna Beach Parks and Recreation, the Information Center at Canaveral National Seashore, the Edgewater and Port Orange YMCAs, Heath Health Foods and Spike's Athletic Shoes in Holly Hill.
This event is presented by Canaveral National Seashore, Coronado Beach Elementary PTA and the Friends of Canaveral.
Proceeds from the event will be used to promote family fitness and healthy lifestyles at Coronado Elementary, and to enhance the Environmental Education program at Canaveral National Seashore.
Council on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys sets public forum
The Florida Council on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys will conduct a public forum at 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31, at Greater Friendship Baptist Church, 539 W. George Engram Blvd., Daytona Beach.
The purpose of the forum is to hear from community leaders and the public on the issues and concerns affecting black men and boys in the area.
The mission of the council is to research and propose measures that improve conditions affecting black men and boys. These measures may consist of changes to the law or systematic changes that can be implemented without legislative action.
One of the featured program participants will be Dr. Edison O. Jackson, president of Bethune-Cookman University.
The council's next meetings will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 31, and 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 1, at the Hilton, 100 N. Atlantic Ave., Daytona Beach. The purpose of the meetings is to update the council's bylaws and focus on a 2013 Summit. All meetings are open to the public.
Floodplain Management Plan Survey
Volusia County and its municipalities are seeking input from residents concerning floodplain management issues, concerns, and other feedback to assist in the development of the Floodplain Management Plan.
A short survey is available at surveymonkey.com/s/Volusia_Floodplain_Management Public_Survey.
If anyone wishes a hard copy of the survey due to limited or no Internet access, call Tara McCue at (387) 262-7772 to obtain a survey and an addressed/stamped envelope to return it in.
Funds available to fortify homes against wind storms
Is your home ready for the next big wind storm? If not, the Volusia County Wind Hazard Mitigation Program may provide assistance.
The program can assist with hurricane shutters for windows and doors, gable-end tie-downs, and upgraded garage doors. The maximum award per household is $10,000.
Funding can be used only for owner-occupied homes in Volusia County except in the city limits of Daytona Beach, Deltona, Oak Hill, Ponce Inlet and Port Orange.
The funds are provided as a five-year, zero-interest deferred loan secured by a mortgage. If the homeowner lives in the home for five years and complies with program restrictions, the loan will be forgiven.
Applicants will work with the county's Community Assistance staff to apply and determine eligibility. For more information and a pre-application, visit www.volusia.org/housing or call (386) 736-5955, Ext. 12969.
Ministry offers free goods
Forever Relying On God Ministries is a nonprofit free thrift store with clothing and household goods for the whole family.
There are no income requirements. However, photo identification is required.
Up to 10 clothing items may be given to each family member each month.
The store also has toys, dishes. books and other household needs.
F.R.O.G. Ministries is located at 415 N. Ridgewood Ave., Edgewater.
For more information, call (386) 957-3822.
Project Linus to meet
Project Linus, an all-volunteer organization that provides comfort and security to seriously ill and traumatized children through handmade blankets, will meet at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 6, at St Paul's Episcopal Church, 1650 Live Oak St., New Smyrna Beach.
For more information, call (386) 423-4453.
Free tax assistance and preparation
The AARP Tax-Aide Program offers a free tax service for taxpayers of all ages with low or moderate income.
AARP Membership is not required but special attention is given to those aged 60 and older.
For more information, locations or to schedule an appointment, e-mail your name and phone number to: email@example.com.
Tim Dorsey returns to NSB library Feb. 2
New York Times best-selling author Tim Dorsey will discuss his newest Serge Storms novel, "The Riptide Ultra-Glide," at 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, at the New Smyrna Beach Regional Library, 1001 S. Dixie Freeway.
Mr. Dorsey, a former night metro editor at the Tampa Tribune, will sign books after the discussion. Books will be available for purchase.
Reservations are not required. For more information, call (386) 424-2910, Ext. 104.
Card party slated
The Knights of Columbus No. 4939 will hold a card party at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 15, at its clubhouse, 516 S. Orange Ave., New Smyrna Beach.
Cost is 5 per person and participants should bring their own cards.
Lunch will be available for purchase.
All proceeds go toward the club's charity fund.
For more information or to buy tickets, call (386) 690-6219. Tickets also will be available at the door.
Boat cruises offered
Canaveral National Seashore hosts pontoon boat cruises.
A two-hour cruise to historic Seminole Rest is at 10 a.m. most Thursdays.
A two-hour cruise to the backwaters of Mosquito Lagoon are at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. most Friday, Saturdays and Sundays.
Cost of each cruise is $20 per person. There is a 50 percent discount offered for seniors or access pass holders. Children younger than 15 are admitted free.
Space is limited; reservations are required. For more information, call (386) 428-3384, Ext. 0.
Florida libraries plan snapshot day Jan. 30
The Volusia County Public Library System will chronicle a day in the life of libraries by participating in Florida Library Snapshot Day on Wednesday, Jan. 30.
The county's 13 library branches will join libraries across Florida in taking pictures and collecting statistics and comments showing how Floridians are using their libraries that day.
The Florida Library Association will collect the results and post them online in partnership with the Division of Library and Information Services at www.flalib.org.
Your library -- anytime, anywhere
Adult Program Coordinator Deborah Shafer will show patrons how to use the public library 24/7 during a free workshop from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 31, in the auditorium of the Daytona Beach Regional Library at City Island, 105 E. Magnolia Ave.,
She will explain how to use the library's website to renew books, place items on hold, obtain items from other branches, and find journal and newspaper articles using the library's electronic databases. Participants will also learn how to use the library's Gale Legal Forms and Medline Plus databases.
Reservations are not required. For more information, call (386) 257-6036, Ext. 16264.
Families kick off tax season
Low to moderate income families in Volusia and Flagler Counties could have up to $5,600 additional income this year by taking advantage of the earned income tax credit, but they may not know they're eligible.
Free tax preparation help is available that will register eligible families for the tax credit through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program. IRS certified volunteers identify taxpayer's eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, etc. and to help them file accurate tax returns, staff the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites.
The VITA Program offers free tax help for low- to moderate-income families who prefer not to prepare their own tax returns.
The tax season runs through April 15. The 15 sites are located in Daytona Beach, DeLand, Deltona, Port Orange, Bunnell, Palm Coast, Pierson, South Daytona and Seville.
To locate the nearest site, call (386) 253-0564 or 2-1-1, or go online to http://www.unitedwayvfc.org/taxes/.
Award nominations sought
Bright House Networks and United Way of Volusia-Flagler Counties' Volunteer Center are accepting nominations to honor volunteers from the 2012 calendar year. Categories include:
Youth under 18
Adult between 18 and 54
Senior 55 and older
Faith Based Group
Typed nominations are due by 5 p.m. Monday, Feb. 11. An electronic version of the nomination forms can be downloaded from www.LiveUnitedinVolusiaFlagler.org
The 26th Annual Outstanding Volunteers of Year Awards will be in April at the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort.
Applicants sought for Affordable Housing Advisory Committee
Residents interested in recommending initiatives to facilitate affordable housing in Volusia County are encouraged to apply for membership on the county's Affordable Housing Advisory Committee.
The committee is composed of 11 members involved in specific aspects of affordable housing. Representatives are needed from the real estate and essential service professions and the county's Planning and Land Development Regulation Commission.
Members will be selected by the Volusia County Council. Applications are available at www.volusia.org/government/volusia-county-council/advisory-boards.
For more information, call (386) 736-5955, Ext. 12308.
World Book Web now available at Volusia County libraries
The Volusia County Public Library system has added World Book Web to its list of online databases.
The new database includes the World Book for all ages and reading levels, Craft Corner, Early World of Learning, Encyclopedia Estudiantil Hallazgos, Hispanica Saber, and Inventions & Discoveries.
Library cardholders can access these reference resources and more in the library and from home at http://volusialibrary.org/VCPLeresources.html.
Learn more about the library system at www.volusialibrary.org.