Memorial Park due for renovations


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- An aging Memorial Park in Riverside will get some major upgrades thanks to a public-private partnership.

The Memorial Park Association is getting money from the city to match their contributions, and $400,000 is now available for park renovations. The Memorial Park Association recently raised $200,000 and the city is matching it thanks to a bill introduced by area Councilman Jim Love.

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Tree removal at Memorial Park ignites concern


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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A well-attended boating event has yielded concerns among people in the Riverside neighborhood.

"All of a sudden there were two trucks out here cutting down this tree," said resident Alyce Adkins.

Adkins shared with First Coast News photos that she took of city crews tearing down a historic live oak near the waterfront. The photos show orange "X" marks spray painted onto the tree's bark.

Adkins said, "My first thought was they were going to have a boat race here in June, and this is one of the only places they could put stands."

Man fought off intruder during home invasion


JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- A homeowner is in the hospital after being attacked during a home invasion. Sgt. CB Shivers with The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said the incident occurred around 2 a.m. Thursday morning in the 2500 block of Post Street in Riverside.

First Coast News talked to the neighbor who called 911. Willie Johnson said he just got home from work when he heard a man knocking on his neighbor's door. Johnson identified his neighbor as 63-year-old Henry Scott. He said the suspect asked Scott to use his restroom and Scott let him in. Johnson said he then heard screaming coming from next door and he called 911.

King Street Farmers Market on "indefinite hiatus"

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- What many say brought the community together, has been shut down.

The King Street Farmers Market used to be held every Wednesday in the parking lot of Intuition Ale Works. It's a chance for local vendors to meet clients and hopefully make money.

An inspector with the City of Jacksonville's Historic Preservation gave the market a Warning Notice of Violation. It read vendors did "have outside sales in a IL zoning district or use not included under permitted or permissible uses ... ." That means, selling goods outside without a permit.

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The message behind San Marco, Riverside street art

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Street art has become quite the talk around town, and if you drive through San Marco and Riverside it's hard to miss.

"In Jacksonville a lot of people do things and ask for forgiveness later. So I gave the city a bunch of beautiful art and now I'm kind of asking for forgiveness," explains a local artist who calls himself "Keith Haring's Ghost".

He's speaking out about why he has painted city-owned property without asking for permission.

"This is the way they looked just absolutely destroyed gray box, gray spray paint all over it...I live not far from here and I pull through this area all the time and I'm like those are perfect canvasses," said the artist.

With a bandana covering his face, and wearing a hat and glasses in hopes of concealing his identity, "Keith Haring's Ghost" because he says he doesn't want this to be about him.

'This is Home' recognizes Riverside and Avondale

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Riverside and Avondale are routinely recognized as among the great neighborhoods in Jacksonville and Florida.

It was even named one of the top ten neighborhoods in the country for 2010 by the American Planning Association.

Join us Friday at 6 a.m. on Good Morning Jacksonville to see why so many people love to call Riverside and Avondale home.

Resident not happy about JEA pole location

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- For decades, Stockton Street residents have enjoyed sidewalks that are at least four feet wide and made of special cut stones.

Last month things changed, much to their chagrin.

"I don't like it," said Freddie Demmons.

Demmons said in December, he received a knock from a JEA representative.

"They said 'the lights will be off about an hour.' That was it," he said.

When they left the neighborhood, he was stunned by what he saw.

"They placed the new electric poles in the middle of the sidewalk," said Demmons, "I don't like it."

The affected area is in Councilman Warren Jones' district.

"I was surprised," said Jones.

The JEA, improving its infrastructure, moved the electric poles from the curb to what is almost the center of the sidewalk.

"It is disruptive to the neighborhood and it is certainly unattractive," said Jones.