News Cast 2/15

News Cast for February 15th:

Cracker Trail Drive comes through Thursday

About 100 riders were expected to take part in the 34th annual Cracker Trail Ride that began Saturday in Bradenton.

The annual trek across Florida follows one of the routes used by cattlemen during cattle drives between Bradenton and Fort Pierce.

This year they will continue to have nightly entertainment and will also make a stop at Cracker Trail Elementary.

Due to the pandemic the riders will not go inside the school grounds for a presentation this year.  Students will be allowed outside to watch the group as they water their horses.

The group also will stop for lunch at the Edna Pearce Lockett Estate and spend the night at the Bass Ranch in Basinger on Thursday.

Cowboy Poet Doyle Rigdon will provide the entertainment at the Okeechobee night camp.

Trail Boss Suzanne Parks said Okeechobee gives the riders a broad taste of the cattle industry, “We get some wide sides of the road with ranch lands and then it changes and suddenly were in the dairies.  Some days can be a task as it can get dusty and windy as we ride down the dairy roads.  We definitely need our bandanas for that.  It is quite the adventure for our young riders as we see the dairy cows and how they are handled.  Sometimes we get to see a dairy calf being born and that is really exciting.”

Glades wants to hold onto business

Moore Haven and Clewiston could soon be fighting over the same business.

Burma Spice wants to expand their location in Moore Haven.

They have recently expanded their work force to 13 employees.

Glades County Commissioner John Ahern recently met with the owner who offered $37,000  to purchase a lot in the Glades County Business Park.

Ahern said the company would like to have a 15,000 square foot building to expand operations.

They also are considering property in Clewiston.

County Commissioner Tony Whidden said Glades should negotiate with the firm because they don’t want to lose the business and the jobs.

The commission after a discussion on what the property was worth, decided to negotiate with the company.

End the hunger struggles financially

An effort to send food home on the weekends with needy school kids is facing a crisis.

Okeechobee County School Board member Jill Holcomb said the End the Hunger Program could end at the end of this month if they don’t get enough sponsors and donations.

Students in the National Honor Society at Okeechobee High School raise funds throughout the year to fill the backpacks with food.

It costs about $250 per student per year.

Holcomb said due to the pandemic the students haven’t been able to hold fund raisers and other efforts to raise funds.

“The backpack sends non-perishable items with needy students home on the weekends.  The kids are certain they will have that food and the reassurance before they come back to school on Monday,” she noted.

She urged people interested in helping to call Okeechobee High School to get more information.

The phone number is 462-5025.