News Headlines 2-7-2020

Joseph Bullock, the FHP Trooper gunned down on I-95 will be transported to Sarasota this morning via heavy police escort. They depart Ft Pierce at 8:00am, and will be going through Highlands County on SR70, with an expected arrival around 10am. Expect heavy police presence.

The biggest party in town starts tonight – the Highlands County Fair opens the gates tonight at 5pm for its 2020 run. First day is Armed Forces Day – military personnel get in for just $4 with ID. The Junior Miss Highlands County Pageant takes center stage tonight at 7pm. The Fair runs through the 15th with expanded hours on weekends and a big Reithoffer Show Midway along with stage shows, agriculture and livestock exhibits, food and more.

A 37 year tradition comes back to Downtown Sebring tomorrow – the Roaring Twenties Festival takes place on and around the Sebring Downtown Circle. Promoter promise over 50 exhibitors and vendors to go along with the car show, music and food all day. Traffic will be rerouted around the circle during the event to allow for the festival.

And on the subject of traffic, watch for bikes tomorrow – The Rotary Club of Highlands County’s annual Bike Sebring event is back with ultracyclists from around the world competing for hundred mile honors, along with twelve and 24-hour endurance records. There will be more of those low-slung recumbent bikes in this year’s event, thanks to a brand challenge in that category, so look a little downward as well. The race begins and ends at Sebring International Raceway with a morning routing through downtown and up to Frostproof, followed by a short loop until dusk north of the airport using Airport Road, old Highway 17, Highway 98 and Heywood Taylor Boulevard.

It took a full day’s work and then some, but after 13 hours, County fire crews announced they were done fighting a blaze at the County landfill yesterday. Landfill fires can be tricky beasts to fight, between flammable gasses from decaying refuse, often-unknown contents in fresh piles of refuse and open space for winds to kick the flames around. Alarms were sounded just past 3am yesterday morning, and hot spots were considered safe to leave a little after 5pm last night.

Another bank name change is on the way. Winter Haven based Center State Bank announced last week that pending approval, the bank would be merging soon with South State Bank headquartered in Columbia, S.C. The combined bank will take the South State Bank name, will be the eighth largest bank in the Southeast.