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First Coast Connect

Renaming Hemming Park; Amazon; Crime & Justice During The Pandemic; Free Tacos

Heather Schatz/WJCT
Hemming Park on June 9, 2020

A move to rename Hemming Park after James Weldon Johnson, the Jacksonville native who composed the famous anthem "Lift Every Voice and Sing," ran into opposition this week. Local veterans organizations made a late-breaking push to rechristen the city's first and oldest park as Veterans Memorial Park.

At the same time, the Duval School Board will launch a process to consider renaming 3 additional schools — Andrew Jackson High School, Jean Ribault High School and Jean Ribault Middle School — the namesakes of which are tied to the marginalization of Native Americans.

Take It Down Founder  Earl Johnson Jr. joined us with more.


Amazon isexpanding its footprint here in Jacksonville. Karen Brune Mathis of the Jacksonville Daily Record joined us with details.


Crime and Justice During the Pandemic

The American Journal of Criminal Justice at University of North Florida has released a special issue looking at “Crime and Justice During the Coronavirus Pandemic.”


The issue features nearly two dozen timely contributions from leading social scientists on a wide range of related topics that include crime trends during the pandemic, like immigration, policing, the need for a national COVID-19 crime and justice research agenda, and the overall crisis to corrections presented by COVID-19.


Mitch Miller and Holly Ventura Miller, criminal justice professors at UNF, joined us with more on this research.

Related: Local, State, And National Coronavirus Coverage

What’s Good Wednesdays

Who doesn’t love those tasty tacos at Burrito Gallery? The beloved eatery is earning even more fans now, becausethey’re giving ten lucky winners free tacos *every day* for the rest of the year! Founding partner Tony Allegretti joined us with details.

For more good news, subscribe to our What’s Good Wednesdays newsletter here.


Heather Schatz can be reached at or on Twitter at @heatherschatz.


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Heather is the senior producer of WJCT 89.9 FM talk shows including First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross, the Florida Roundup and What's Health Got to Do with It?