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Observed from: Okeechobee County Airport
, 73 °F
A slight chance of showers, then showers and thunderstorms likely after 11am. Partly sunny, with a high near 88. Calm wind becoming south … Get the full forecast
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Coronavirus

CDC advises all eligible Americans be vaccinated against COVID-19

The Centers for Disease Control last week warned the highly contagious COVID-19 delta variant is likely to become the dominant strain in United States.

State shuts down COVID-19 dashboard

According to the Centers for the Disease Control, those who are fully vaccinated can safely go out in public...

Mobile COVID-19 Vaccination Units arrive at four Hendry County locations

The Florida Department of Health and the Florida Division of Emergency Management have partnered to offer mobile vaccination units at several locations...
Community
Microcystis and Anabaena, two of the most common cyanobacteria found in estuarine systems today, are bacteria known to produce cyanotoxins dangerous to humans and animals.

Calusa Waterkeeper documentary warns of dangers posed by algae

SOUTHWEST FLORIDA- Calusa Waterkeeper has made the 2019 documentary “Troubled Waters: The Public Health Impacts of Harmful Algae Blooms” available, for free, to the public. Calusa …
A Freedom Walk parade through Harlem and Clewiston kicked off the Hendry County’s second annual Juneteenth celebration.

Juneteenth Celebration becomes federally recognized

CLEWISTON- Juneteenth, the holiday commemorating the end of slavery, is now a federal holiday.

Clewiston Cougars plan adult flag football fundraiser

The Clewiston Cougars will host and adult flag football game fundraiser on July 10.
Police/Fire
K9 Luna and Office Jessica Francis are always ready to get the job done.

DeSantis signs bill supporting LEO canines

Governor Ron DeSantis supports bill to help LEO K9s injured in the line of duty

True Okee episode 2: Have you seen Miss Paula

A young school teacher in Okeechobee disappears from a laundromat. At the same time, reports come in of a car seen driving through town erratically, with a struggle going on between the driver …

Hendry County Arrest Report for June 7 to June 13

The following individuals were arrested on felony or driving under the influence (DUI) charges.
Read the Hendry County Guide
Weather
When a hurricane threatens, do you have a plan for your pets? Do you have a safe spot for them in your home? What will you do with them if you can’t stay in your home?
Weathering storms is a part of every Floridian’s life. As the 2021 Hurricane Season begins, please take a few minutes to review some of the mandatory supplies.
Ninety-two years ago a hurricane struck Florida that would change the Lake Okeechobee area forever. It lashed Puerto Rico on its way to South Florida and tore its way directly through Lake Okeechobee...
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Sports
Young wrestlers train during the new Hendry Wrestling Club practices held at LHS.

New wrestling club welcomes ages 6 and up

HENDRY COUNTY- A new wrestling club has been established, with practices being held at LaBelle High School on Tuesday and Thursday nights.
The Clewiston Cougars cheerleaders look forward to the upcoming season.

Clewiston Cougars on the lookout for more cheerleaders

CLEWISTON- The Clewiston Cougars are looking for girls ages 11-15 for our Junior and Senior Cheer Squads. July 1, 2021 is the deadline for  registration and payment. The first game of the season …
The Clewiston High School cheerleaders washed cars over the weekend to raise money for the upcoming season.

CHS Cheerleaders work hard to raise funds

CLEWISTON- The Clewiston High School cheerleaders and coach Corie Robertson are working to raise money for new uniforms and game day accessories.
Entertainment
The South Florida Science Center and Aquarium is bringing back everyone’s favorite monthly nighttime event starting on June 25.
On May 10, Vibra Urbana Music Festival announced its biggest artist lineup to date, bringing a diverse array of Latin music’s brightest stars and respected veterans...
OKEECHOBEE – It’s official. Insomniac plans for Okeechobee Music Festival to return to Sunshine Grove in northeastern Okeechobee County in 2022.
Human Interest
A baby bird cries for it’s mom while Clewiston Animal Control returns it to the nest.

Animal control rescues baby bird

CLEWISTON- On Monday morning, June 7, 2021, Clewiston Animal Control (CAC) received a call regarding a baby bird that had fallen from it’s nest at Westside Elementary School.
The Prolific Learning Corp. Work Readiness graduates from Clewiston.

Local students graduate from Work Readiness Program

HENDRY COUNTY- This past week, Prolific Learning Corp. Summer Work Program participants, participated in a four day Work Readiness training.
The first total lunar eclipse in two years took place on May 26 and was also a Super blood moon.

Total lunar eclipse and Super Blood Moon were photo op

HENDRY COUNTY- The first total lunar eclipse in two years took place on May 26, 2021 and was a Super Blood Moon.
Business
CLEWISTON- Close to half of Black small businesses have closed down in 2020, as the pandemic presented challenges to minority communities disproportionately
Harbor Freight Tools, America’s go-to store for quality tools at the lowest prices, has announced that it will be opening a new store in Clewiston.
The Rail Passengers Association applauded Amtrak’s Corridor Vision document released earlier May 28, which provides additional details on the railroad’s plan...
Government
Hendry County will honor June Nineteenth
HENDRY COUNTY- The Hendry County Board of County Commissioners honored and recognized, posthumously, The Honorable Alcee Lamar Hastings on June 8, 2021, during a regular BOCC meeting. Alcee Lamar …
A new United States federal program is helping to pay funeral expenses of people who died from COVID-19. Unfortunately, scammers are using this...
CLEWISTON- The City of Clewiston Commissioners have called a Special Commission Meeting, to discuss the matter of Clewiston Commons vs. City of Clewiston
Health
Breaking through unproductive thoughts and behaviors requires attention to a new dimensional awareness beyond “the now.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will start a new study in south Florida during the 2021 algal bloom season to assess the health effects of exposure to …
Traffic & Road Work
Hendry County Road Watch report for the week beginning Sunday, June 13

HENDRY COUNTY — The following column is the Road Watch report for Hendry County for the week beginning Sunday, June 13, provided by the Florida Department of Transportation.

Hendry County to perform roadwork project on Fort Denaud Road

Agriculture

Sugar Express welcomes new operations manager to America’s sweetest town

This week, the Sugar Express, U.S. Sugar’s future excursion steam engine line, announced the hiring of Scott Ogle as Operations Manager.
Farm Bureau members were invited to attend a three-part webinar series focusing on the significance, substance and strategy of federal advocacy. This photos is from Highlands County.

Florida farmers meet with national lawmakers

Florida farmers, ranchers and small business owners spoke up for agriculture during Florida Farm Bureau Federation’s Hill to the Field Advocacy Week, June 1-4, 2021.
Wildlife & Environment

UF wildlife ecologists teach public to help boost bluebird population

As pest-eaters, Eastern bluebirds benefit Florida farmers. Not only that, they’re cute. Two good reasons Hance Ellington has started a program to preserve them.
Monitoring has occurred so far at one week, two weeks and four weeks after outplanting and will continue monthly for two years. The photographs and observations are now being entered into a database. Information on the fate of these corals during this critical time will be available in early July.

Reef-wide outplanting of corals susceptible to stony coral tissue loss disease begins

Reef restoration experiments in Florida have never been replicated on such a large scale before, with 24 outplanting sites spanning from Martin County down the coast of southeast Florida to Key West.
State News

Florida governor: Students will be taught communism is evil

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Civics education will be expanded in Florida, including instruction about communist and totalitarian governments, and state universities will be prevented from quashing …

Death penalty phase next in Florida double slaying trial

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Jurors will determine if a Florida man should get the death penalty or life in prison after he was convicted of killing his girlfriend and disabled daughter. The penalty phase …

Claims of murder plot against GOP candidate in Florida court

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Claims by a Republican congressional candidate that another GOP hopeful plotted to kill her landed Tuesday in a Florida courtroom. Anna Paulina Luna, who plans to run …
National & World

5 years after Brexit vote, divided UK still feels shockwaves

LONDON (AP) — Five years ago Wednesday, Britons voted in a referendum that was meant to bring certainty to the U.K.’s unsettled relationship with its European neighbors. Fat …

AP Interview: Belarus regime 'frightened,' says opponent

BRUSSELS (AP) — When authorities in Belarus diverted a Ryanair passenger jet to Minsk last month to arrest a dissident journalist who was aboard, their goal may have been to silence a troublesome …

Iran likely had failed rocket launch, preparing for another

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Iran likely conducted a failed launch of a satellite-carrying rocket in recent days and now appears to be preparing to try again, the country's latest effort to …
Opinion
We are blessed by the Good Lord to live in the Sunshine State. Here in Florida, we’re surrounded by natural beauty, plentiful food and endless opportunity.
I have been a preschool director for 10 years here in LaBelle. Not much has changed in the Voluntary Pre- Kindergarten Program that has been governed by the state.
On June 2, Congressman W. Gregory Steube sent the below letter to Secretary Pinkham, Lieutenant General Spellmon, and Colonel Kelly concerning the lake levels of Lake Okeechobee.
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