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First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross

6/01/2017: Anna Brosche; Graduation Gifts; Pond, Garden Tour; Kerry Speckman; Dawn Wells


  Today on “First Coast Connect,” we spoke with Jacksonville City Council President-Designee Anna Brosche (01:04). Nick Cantrell (26:50) of Jax Federal Credit Union talks about alternatives to cash graduation gifts. We heard about the upcoming Ponds and Gardens Tour with tour planner Kevanie Counts and tour homeowner Mary Fisher (32:48). Kerry Speckman (39:03) told us about some of this weekend’s events and actress Dawn Wells (42:45) from “Gilligan’s Island” discussed her performance at the Alhambra.  


Anna Brosche

It was a controversial vote to find out who would become the next Jacksonville City Council president. Normally the sitting vice president assumes the role, but this year but this year Anna Lopez Brosche decided to challenge John Crescimbeni for the position. It led to much speculation as to which councilmember would succeed. In the end Brosche won by an 11-8 vote. 

Graduation Gifts

The end of the school year can be an exciting, but expensive time for many First Coast families. According to the National Retail Federation’s 2016 Graduation Spending Survey, the average graduation gift cost $106.45, for a total of $5.4 billion. While many consumers opt for cash in an envelope, there are other financial gifts that may have a bigger impact on the new graduate. Cantrell said now is the time to explore some alternative non-cash gifts for the graduate in your life.

Pond, Garden Tour

Here is your chance to tour some of the city’s most beautiful ponds and gardens in private homes. EarthWorks is sponsoring this free garden tour. It’s a chance to meet other gardeners, share tips, and discover cool new ideas for your outdoor spaces. Tour maps are available at Earth Works Garden Center at 12501 Beach Boulevard. The tour will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Kerry Speckman

Speckman spoke about several events this weekend, including WJCT’s  “Be My Neighbor Day” open house from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 3. There will be appearances by many of PBS’s favorite characters, including Katerina Kitty Cat and her friends Clifford, Buddy the Dinosaur, Super Why and Princess Presto.

Dawn Wells    

She was a fan favorite playing Mary Ann on the television show “Gilligan’s Island.” Despite only being on the air for three seasons, the show has repeated ever since in syndication. Wells talked about her time on the show and her role as Weeza Boudreaux in “Steel Magnolias” at the Alhambra Theater.   

Producer Kevin Meerschaert can be reached at, 904-358-6334 or on Twitter at @KMeerschaertJax

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.