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First Coast Connect

Interfaith vigil against hate; PACT ACT; Eat Your Yard Jax; What’s Good Wednesday

This message was displayed on the back of a scoreboard at TIAA Bank Field.
This message was displayed on the back of a scoreboard at TIAA Bank Field.

Jacksonville residents of all faiths and backgrounds are standing in solidarity with the city’s Jewish community. They’re speaking out against antisemitic messages that were displayed across the city during Florida-Georgia Weekend. Tomorrow night, Nov. 3, a candlelit vigil for unity and hope will take place at James Weldon Johnson Park Downtown. First Coast Connect listeners can lend their voices against hate as members of the community rally together during the vigil. The vigil will begin at 5:30 pm.



President Biden recently signed important new legislation, known as the PACT ACT, into law. This legislation provides access to medical aid for sick veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pit chemicals in overseas wars. The VA says that now is the time for eligible recipients to file a claim to receive help. Terrence Hayes, press secretary for the Department of Veterans Affairs, spoke with us to give listeners more details and information on the new legislation, as well as the claim filing process. 

Eat Your Yard Jax

Eat Your Yard Jax is a nonprofit edible plant nursery and education center. The organization is celebrating its 2nd annual Persimmon Festival this Sunday. Tim Armstrong, the founder of Eat Your Yard Jax, joined us in the studio this morning with a preview of the festival’s activities. This year, Eat Your Yard Jax will kick things off with a farm-to-table dinner by Dennis Chan of Blue Bamboo. The festival will be a day filled with learning from knowledgeable instructors on gardening, permaculture, cooking and prep, taking care of our bodies and the earth. This year’s festival expands on last year's event and explores new topics and culinary delights that celebrate the persimmon. Tickets are $20 and are nonrefundable. If a guest buys a ticket but cannot attend the event, purchased tickets will be counted as a donation. Only 200 tickets will be available. More information can be found at

What’s Good Wednesday

  • Jacksonville Dance Theatre is debuting its new season this fall. The theatre’s executive director, Katie McCaughan, gave us a preview of the upcoming season. The new season is a premiere of three works that celebrate women in the arts. The first show is on Nov. 12 at the Wilson Center for the Arts
  • Fogle Art Consulting is opening a retail location, The Creative Exchange (CX904), at 50 N. Laura St., Suite 175, in the Bank of America Towerin Downtown Jacksonville. This is being done in an effort to combine art and commerce to benefit both creators and the community. CX904 will promote, sell and showcase local art, literature, jewelry, gifts and more. It will open Nov. 7. Hours for November and December will be 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The shop also will be open by appointment and plans to host after hours events. Additional offerings will include corporate gifts, custom prints and framing. 
  • Teachers at J Allen Axson elementary school have organized a fundraiser called "Rock Axson'' to raise money to fight hunger. They’re planning a big concert at the school’s fall festival this Friday. During this concert, the kids will participate in a "day in the life" through rock music. 
  • In the wake of the antisemitic messages displayed in the city, there’s a special opportunity to support Jacksonville’s vibrant Jewish community with the JCA Cultural Arts Festival. Festival organizer Whitney Kuvin spoke with us about the event. The Jewish Community Alliance (JCA) is a nonprofit community center affiliated with the Jewish Federation and Foundation of Northeast Florida, the United Way of Northeast Florida and the Jewish Community Centers of North America. JCA’s mission is to contribute to the continuation of Jewish life and all people within the community of Jacksonville. Each November, the JCA celebrates its annual festival. For more information, listeners can check out
  • The Whiskey Wine and Wildlife Festivalis coming this weekend in Vilano Beach. Festival organizer Jan Gourley spoke with us about the weekend’s activities. The festival artfully combines renowned beverage tastings and inspired cuisine from some of the South’s best chefs and local culinary superstars. Attendees also have a chance to experience coastal wildlife up-close. First Coast Connect is giving away one pair of general admission tickets to the main event Saturday. To enter, listeners must email and put "WWW" in the subject line.
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Gary Autry is joining WJCT from Florida State College at Jacksonville as a production intern for the fall 2022 semester. A native of the First Coast, Gary is finishing his bachelor’s degree in communication and media this fall.