News Briefs for the Week of February 15-21, 2024


Explore the beach at GTM Research Reserve

Join volunteers at the Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve (GTM) for a beach exploration 9-11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 17. Collect seashells, search for shark teeth and learn about coastal wildlife. Meet at GTM Research Reserve Visitor Center, 505 Guana River Road, Ponte Vedra Beach.

Wear comfortable closed-toe shoes. Hat, insect repellent, water and sunscreen are recommended. The event is free but online registration is required. To register, go to

Palm Valley Market every Tuesday

The Palm Valley Market is held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Tuesday inside the Palm Valley Community Center, 148 Canal Road. The market offers fresh produce, baked goods, local honey, tea, seasonal treats, soap, jewelry, plants and more.

Public meetings for county plans begin Feb. 20

As St. Johns County embarks on an aggressive public engagement effort for community participation in an update of its Comprehensive Plan and a new Strategic Plan, meeting dates have been announced, as well as other opportunities to participate. Community meetings will be held from Feb. 20-22, with additional meetings in different parts of the county to be scheduled in March.

Upcoming meetings will be:

  • 20, 6-7:30 p.m. at Pacetti Bay Middle School Auditorium, 245 Meadowlark Lane
  • 21, 6-7:30 p.m. at Southeast Branch Library, 6670 U.S. 1 South
  • 22, 6-7:30 p.m. at Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, 1050 A1A North

The dates and locations for March meetings will be announced later.

The Comprehensive Plan is a document required by the state to be evaluated for updates at least every seven years and is designed to guide the future actions of a jurisdiction. For St. Johns County it will present a long-range vision for a community’s future with long-range goals, objectives and policies.

The Strategic Plan is the county’s attempt to engage the public to develop strategic priorities and guide the allocation of resources in the future.

In addition to the in-person meetings, the county has announced the availability of public kiosks throughout the community with printed copies of the Comprehensive Plan survey. Those locations are:

  • Anastasia Island Branch Library, 124 Sea Grove Main St.
  • Bartram Trail Branch Library, 60 Davis Pond Blvd.
  • Hastings Branch Library, 6195 S. Main St.
  • Main Branch Library, 1960 N. Ponce De Leon Blvd.
  • Ponte Vedra Beach Branch Library, 101 Library Blvd.
  • Southeast Branch Library, 6670 U.S. 1 South
  • Johns County Utility Department, 1205 S.R. 16
  • Johns County Permit Center, 4040 Lewis Speedway
  • Johns County Auditorium, 500 San Sebastian View

The public can also access the Comprehensive Plan at to provide feedback through an online survey and interactive idea wall, as well as download and electronically share the printed version of the survey.

— Compiled by Shaun Ryan