DCSO defense classes start soon

Anxious about random violence or other acts of inhumanity? The DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office hosts a free two-hour active-shooter program, where you learn to prepare at work, places of worship, even checkout counters or the parking lot. Awareness is the key to safety, said Capt. Andrew Proudfit, a sheriff’s officer running the program that starts July 24, Aug. 15 and Aug. 24 at the South Florida State College/DeSoto campus. “Pulling into a parking lot,” he said, “and it kind of starts there.”

Class includes an overview of the active-shooter trend, the “Run, Hide, Fight” strategy, much more, Proudfit said. The program is limited to those 18 and up, open to 50 participants/per class. 863-491-6716

Number 7 … and flying high

Arcadia’s city airport is top-flight. Arcadia Municipal Airport is among Florida’s seven best general aviation or public airports. The top airport from more than 100 is picked by the Florida Department of Transportation in August. Arcadia Municipal’s administrator Shelley Peacock said more than $1 million in state money has funded a new grass airstrip, resurfaced taxiways and other improvements. In addition, the airport has a loaner van and a campground/showers for visiting pilots, funded by Friends of Arcadia Airport, the nonprofit reaching more than 1,000 pilots. Arcadia Municipal, which took over as the Fixed Based Operator last year, also reduced its fuel prices, another attraction to pilots and aviation groups hopscotching Florida. “They love our airport and our town,” Peacock said.

Mosquito spray to limit dangerous virus

DeSoto County’s Emergency Management Department advises precautions to prevent mosquitos by eliminating breeding sites near and around the home. Although no human cases are reported, an unvaccinated DeSoto horse contracted Eastern Equine Encephalitis and had to be euthanized. The disease is found in birds and is transmitted by mosquitoes. Horses should be vaccinated to protect against the disease. Humans can also be infected with EEE by mosquitoes and could experience flu-like symptoms. The disease in rare cases can be fatal. Currently, there is not an EEE vaccine for humans. DeSoto County has contracted with Clarke Environmental for mosquito identification and to ground spray annually. The firm has started and you will see them spraying. Details on EEE at www.freshfromflorida.com

Arcadia Boys & Girls Club updates on Tuesday

Proposed changes to the historic Smith-Brown recreation complex get presented Tuesday at the Arcadia city council hearing. Execs with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota County will share a master plan for renovations at the location in Arcadia, converted in July 2018 to an Arcadia Boys & Girls Club. Architectural changes to the Smith-Brown gymnasium, a covered playground and basketball courts, a pavilion and extra class space get introduced at the meeting that starts at 6 p.m., executives with the nonprofit said. In all, the Arcadia Boys & Girls Club will receive some $1.3 million in upgrades and additions, providing space for about 200 afterschool kids. www.bgcsarasota.com

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