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First Coast Connect

Duval County Public Schools named in federal lawsuit; the senior vote; FSCJ Artist Series; What’s good Wednesday

Gavel on a table
Charlie Neibergall
Associated Press

A group of Florida families and other groups are suing to block the Florida Parental Rights in Education Act, dubbed by critics as the “Don’t Say Gay” law.

The federal lawsuit argues that the law, which bans discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in grades K-3 and restricts discussions for older kids, silences and erases LGBTQ+ students and families.

Four Florida school districts are named in the lawsuit, including the Duval County Public Schools.

Guest: Kell Olson, staff attorney, Lambda Legal.

The senior vote

For many older Americans, winning their support will come down to how candidates plan to tackle real problems.

People 50 years and older vote more than any other age group, but overall turnout tends to be lower in a non-presidential year, which will make the 50-plus vote even more important.

Guest: Jamie Champion Mongiovi, communications director, AARP Florida.

FSCJ Artist Series

The FSCJ Artist Series has a lot going on this summer and in the coming months. Upcoming events include ABBA and Queen tribute concerts, a conversation with David Sedaris, Cirque Dreams and Broadway in Jax, among others.

Guest: Shelley Henley, publicist, FSCJ Artist Series and Broadway in Jacksonville.

What’s good Wednesday

  • Well this Sunday, you can discover the secrets of Jacksonville on the Art Bikes tour. Writer Bill Delaney, co-owner of The Jaxson Mag and Edible Northeast Florida Magazine, has spent years researching Jacksonville’s hidden history. He’s teamed up with Art Bikes Jax to highlight underrepresented stories and historical sites featured in his book “Secret Jacksonville.” Delaney will guide the fleet of colorful bikes on a tour through parts of Avondale, Brooklyn, Durkeeville, Downtown and many other monumental sites. From the home stadium of the Jacksonville Red Caps of the Negro Major Leagues to the city’s most haunted school, you have the chance to explore the hidden gems of the city.
  • MOCA Jax now offers a series of both in-person and online tours. Their website offers a new way to experience MOCA: 360, self-guided virtual tour that fully immerses viewers into the world of contemporary art. Participants can see close-up details of the paintings and sculptures and learn about the history of each of the artworks. Viewers get a taste of past and present art exhibits with over 25 different exhibitions to choose from. Currently on exhibit is "Kara Walker: Cut to the Quick" from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation. The exhibit critiques the legacies of slavery, gender violence and exploitation. The museum offers a Reflection Room for those viewing the collection in person, as well as community resources for anyone who needs additional support. You can take your own self-guided virtual tour today at
Strode Photographic LLC
© Kara Walker, Testimony, edition 12/40, 2005. Photogravure, 22 3/8 x 31 in. Collection of Jordan D. Schnitzer. Photo by Strode Photographic LLC.

  • Good news for future homeowners! Inflation is not only taking a toll on food and goods prices; the cost of housing is increasing at an alarming rate. As the cost of rent skyrockets, many people look to homeowning as an option. This includes buyers who are ready to purchase their first home. Jax Federal Credit Union announced that those who are buying a home for the first time may be eligible to receive assistance. Homebuyers can receive up to $7,500 in funds to help with a down payment, closing costs or renovation costs in the case of purchasing an existing home. To be eligible, a first-time homebuyer must have a household income that is equal to or less than 80 percent of median family income as defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Borrowers also must make a minimum contribution of $1,000 toward the down payment. Eligible properties include one- to four-unit family residences, townhouses, condominiums, cooperatives and manufactured homes deeded as real estate. For additional information on Jax Federal Credit Union’s mortgage lending options,
  • An Arlington interfaith community group joined efforts once again this year to fill 500 backpacks with school supplies for local children. Six faith congregations are collecting school supplies for local schoolchildren this upcoming school year.  Ft. Caroline Presbyterian; Resurrection Episcopal; Istanbul Center; Mt. Zion United Methodist; St. Andrew’s  Episcopal; and the Arlington congregation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The backpacks are being prepared for 11 Title I schools located in the Arlington area. 
  • The University of North Florida Botanical Garden has been awarded a five gold-level rating by Florida Yards and Neighborhoods Commercial Certifications. The gold level award recognizes the botanical garden’s use of eco-friendly and Florida-friendly practices, including promoting biodiversity and sustainability of the garden. Guided Garden tours occur on the second Saturday of each month at 10 a.m., starting in front of the library.
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Katherine Hobbs was Associate Producer of talk shows at WJCT until 2022.