News Headlines 3-25-22

It’s more than a beauty contest … there could be dog food involved here. The Highlands County Sheriff’s Department wants you to hit their Facebook page today and cast your vote for K-9 Officer Waylon in a lighthearted statewide contest between K-9 officers around the state. Waylon – the department bloodhound – faces off K-9 Brinx, a toothy-looking fellow from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s office. A “heart” reaction is a vote for our Waylon, a “care” emoji is a vote for Brinx. Voting goes through the day today – competition is stiff, with one K-9 officer from out in the state claiming he can even pump gas while hounding for votes.

We’ve barely recovered from the Twelve Hours of Sebring, and the next ticketed event at the Sebring Raceway is only a couple weeks away. The 2022 Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) season is set to begin with the opening day of on-track activity for the HSR Spring Fling April 6-8. The Sebring Spring Fling returns with the same Wednesday through Friday weekday schedule format that proved popular with competitors and race fans alike when it was introduced last year.

The Highlands County School Board has set the date and time for that workshop session on sex ed in the local schools. Its billed as a discussion on the local “health education curriculum,” and representatives of the “I Make A Difference” program as well as school board staff are expected to answer questions and concerns from the public expressed at a recent school board meeting. The session will be Monday, April 11 at 5:30 at Sebring Middle School, and yes – the public’s invited.

The Sebring Red Lobster Restaurant on Highway 27 IS open after an early morning fire Wednesday morning. Sebring Fire Department crews were called in a little after 7am after a fire alarm went off at the business – a manager reported smoke inside the building, which turned out to be in the lobby area wall. The fire was extinguished quickly with primarily drywall damage and the restaurant was open by yesterday morning. Firefighters say no injuries – even to the lobsters.

The vacant lot in downtown Sebring where the old Nan-Ces-O-Wee Hotel once stood may nob be vacant for long. The Sebring Downtown CRA says they expect to close on the sale of the property b the end of April to a developer planning an apartment building featuring commercial space and parking on the lower level as well as a rooftop restaurant. Three other buildings on and around the Downtown Circle are in various stages of progress in becoming an entertainment venue and restaurant, another an Irish pub, and another – possibly – a gourmet bake shop.

A Hillsborough County man died yesterday after he hit a large alligator with his car yesterday. Hillsborough County deputies said Johns Hopkins was driving in Lithia when the front of his vehicle hit the alligator, which was on the road. The crash caused his car to flip over and land in a ditch. Hopkins died on the scene – the alligator was also killed in the crash.