Holy Spirit’s Anthony Lord to play for Pace University

Holy Spirit High School senior offensive lineman Anthony Lord will play NCAA Division II football at Pace University on a full athletic scholarship. The first-team Press All-Star committed to Pace on Sunday after an overnight visit to its Pleasantville, New York, campus helped him see his potential role at the school and on the football team. “They’re bringing positive players that are not just good players but also good people,” Lord said Monday. “I’m definitely looking forward to the upcoming season, looking forward to trying to make an impact right away.” The 18 year-old from Northfield was in contact with other Division II schools such as Kutztown, Ave Maria and West Florida, as well as Division I Wagner. Lord said he chose Pace because he will get to follow his academic ambitions while being apart of a growing program. “To come out of there well-prepared for a job, that’s just too big to pass up, and the football program is going to be on the rise,” Lord said. Lord helped the Spartans’ running game score 37 touchdowns and average 276.5 yards per game last season. He played a crucial role in allowing Holy Spirit to finish 8-3 overall. The 6-foot-2 inch, 245-pound center transferred from St. Joseph at the start of his junior year and played under head coach A.J. Russo and assistant Bill Walsh at Spirit. “When I was leaving St. Joe’s, I didn’t even really know if i wanted to play football, and then Coach Walsh got me in the weight room, and he believed in me,” Lord said. “He was really one of the first coaches who saw something, that I had the potential to be great.” The coaches also saw a big change for their team with Lord on their side. He helped the Spartans reach the 2016 state Non-Public Group II playoff final in Russo’s first year at Holy Spirit. Lord said one of his fondest high school memories is of helping the Spartans beat Immaculata in Continue Reading

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to speak at Ave Maria University graduation

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will make her third official visit to Collier County to speak at Ave Maria University’s commencement ceremony May 5.DeVos read to kindergartners at Lake Park Elementary in November after visiting Florida Southwestern Collegiate High School, a charter school in Fort Myers. In October she toured Everglades City School and Pinecrest Elementary in Immokalee to survey damage from Hurricane Irma.Ave Maria president Jim Towey said he was thrilled she accepted his invitation to come back to Collier.“It was a long shot, but I think we convinced her people that this would be a wonderful venue for her,” he said. More: U.S. Education Secretary DeVos returns to SWFL to highlight school choice More: Education Secretary DeVos, Interior Secretary Zinke visit Everglades City More: Trump Education Secretary DeVos visits Orlando community college In his invitation, Towey said he emphasized that the university’s values are in line with the DeVos administration.Towey pointed to Ave Maria’s community service initiatives that have provided ongoing support to the Immokalee community as well as to the low level of student debt among graduates. DeVos has talked about making college more affordable.Towey also mentioned the university’s commitment to issues of religious liberty.Ave Maria’s founder Tom Monaghan, a Michigan native like DeVos, founded the university in 2003 with a vision to build a surrounding town based on Catholic beliefs.In his invitation, Towey said he also mentioned his support for DeVos’ decision to dismantle President Obama’s guidance on Title IX, which had lowered the burden of proof required to adjudicate cases of campus sexual assault. DeVos’ actions increased protections for the accused.“We made the case that we’re everything the secretary has been touting,” Towey said.Towey said the university’s ties to the White Continue Reading

Ave Maria Development reports strong 2017 new home sales

AVE MARIA — Ave Maria Development announces a strong 2017 sales year with 305 new home sales contracts. The master-planned community, located off Oil Well Road, has been recognized as the fastest selling new home community in both Collier and Lee counties for three years, counting more than 1,300 new home sales since 2013."Ave Maria’s growth is explosive with hundreds of new families moving in every year," states Cee Cee Marinelli of Ave Maria Development. "We’ve been named Community of the Year in 2017, 2016 and 2015 and recognized as a Top 35 Master Planned Community as well as a Top 20 Places to Retire, all in the past few years."The town of Ave Maria offers several styles of homes including single-family residences  offering from two to six bedrooms featuring lake, preserve and golf course views. Twenty-one model homes are open daily. Homebuyers can select from several builders in different neighborhoods.CC Homes builds single-family homes in three neighborhoods: Maple Ridge at Ave Maria, Coquina at Maple Ridge, and Maple Ridge Reserve. New homes are priced starting in the low-$200s. Del Webb Naples offers single-family homes in their exclusive active adult neighborhood for residents 55 and better with prices starting in the low-$200s. National Builder Pulte Homes builds single-family residences in three neighborhoods: Avalon Park, Emerson Park and Hampton Village. New homes are priced starting in the mid-$200s.Amenities include an on-site water park, Panther Run Golf Club at Del Webb, tennis and bocce, Town Center shopping and dining, Publix grocery market, private schools and university, and sports fields and playgrounds. At build out, Ave Maria will include up to 11,000 residences, and 1.7 million square feet of retail, office, and business park uses in its 4,000 acres. Ave Maria is at the intersection of Oil Well and Camp Keais roads in eastern Collier County. The main entrance, on Oil Well Continue Reading

Ave Maria University awarded $100,000 grant for Alzheimer’s research

Ave Maria University has been awarded $100,000 as one of 31 grants from the Florida Department of Health to universities in the state for research on Alzheimer’s disease.Four researchers at the university in Collier County are teaming up to investigate how certain proteins in the brain might be manipulated to promote protections against the debilitating disease, said Antonio Barbosa, the principal investigator and an associate professor of chemistry.In addition, some of the peer-reviewed grant will be used for scholarships for four undergraduates to be involved in the research in the summer, he said.Ave Maria is the only grant recipient among the group where the research will be led by an undergraduate-based program, as opposed to a graduate-level program, Barbosa said.“It’s exciting,” he said. More: The part of aging that people don't talk about — and 5 ways to deal with it More: Naples woman goes above and beyond to care for husband with Alzheimer's disease More: Family caregivers reveal emotions in new AARP survey More: CDC: Alzheimer’s deaths increased nearly 55% from 1999 to 2014 The $5 million in state funding for the 31 grants comes from the Ed and Ethel Moore Alzheimer’s Disease Research Program, which the Florida Legislature created in 2014 to help find ways to prevent and cure Alzheimer’s disease, the most common type of dementia.The disease begins with mild memory loss and can progress to loss of the ability to respond to one’s environment, to carry out daily living activities or recognize loved ones.In Florida, an estimated 520,000 people are living with Alzheimer’s, and the number is expected to increase to more than 700,000 by 2025, according to the state Department of Elder Affairs.Almost 12 percent of the current senior population in Florida has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.Nationally, more than 5 million Continue Reading

‘To be the best’: Ave Maria preteen striving to be an Olympic runner

Bernardo Barnhart Jr. is super serious about his passion for running.How serious?The 12-year-old seventh-grader from Ave Maria hasn’t had a soda or piece of candy since he was in third grade.“When I get to high school, I want to win the state championship,” he said without a hint of arrogance. “And after that, I want to make the Olympics and do well there.”When young athletes say they want to become an NFL star or shine in the Olympics, it could often be mistaken for pie in the sky dreaming.But when Barnhart says it, he means it. Already running at least seven miles a day, Barnhart discovered his passion for cross country running in fourth grade.“At my elementary school, they have a 95210 program and that’s when I started running,” he said. “I realized I could go pretty fast and loved doing it.”The 95210 represents nine hours of sleep, five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, two hours maximum of TV/video screen time a day, at least one hour of physical activity per day and zero intake of sugary beverages. Not only has Barnhart followed the exercise portion to a T, he’s also extremely diligent in what foods and drinks he consumes.“I try to eat a lot of proteins and things that are good for you,” Barnhart said. “And I don’t miss eating candy or drinking soda. I know those things won’t help me become a better athlete.”He’s also been an inspiration to his parents and two younger brothers.“As a family, we’re doing all the 5K's now,” father Bernardo Sr. said. “He’s been an inspiration to all of us, and it’s something we now love doing as a family.”The younger Barnhart capped off a phenomenal 2017 by competing in the Junior Olympics national championships in Tallahassee on Dec. 9. Barnhart qualified for the event by taking first place out of more than 400 runners in the regional event, which pitted athletes from Continue Reading

Hurricane Irma: At Ave Maria University, classes are out, but education continues after storm

Classes were canceled at Ave Maria University this week.But the students who stayed behind to weather Hurricane Irma are getting the education of a lifetime.“I told our students they’d be better men and women by Monday,” University President Jim Towey said Wednesday.The students and staff of the university, which was largely spared from hurricane damage, have been volunteering in droves to lend a hand in Immokalee, the nearby farming community which was not so fortunate. More: Hurricane Irma batters iconic Naples restaurant The Dock at Crayton Cove More: Hurricane Irma: Naples Zoo starts to rebuild, asks for public's help More: Hurricane Irma: Water managers move pumps in Collier to drain floodwaters More: Hurricane Irma: Immokalee residents need food and water; how to help On Wednesday, students filled van after van with water, sandwiches, fruit and bread and drove into Immokalee.Some went to the soup kitchen operated by Guadalupe Social Services, but others drove straight into neighborhoods where residents are just returning from shelters to find spoiled food, flooded streets and few stores open.Maria Binuelo, an Immokalee native who is the university’s catering manager, went up and down the street telling residents there was free food and water to be had. Within minutes, the students were busy filling up bags and handing them out.At a collection of tiny homes across Immokalee Road from the Seminole Casino, Yvelise Olibas said the food from Ave Maria was the first she’s had since Monday when she came back from a shelter. “No stores are open,” she said. And at the ones that were, “Somebody was trying to charge us $5 for a bag of ice. That’s illegal.”U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio visited Ave Maria together Wednesday afternoon to thank the students and staff and to let them know the world is watching.The university, while it has power, is getting Continue Reading

Mississippi man Alan Moore, 61, to suit up as kicker for Faulkner University (Ala.) football team

A Mississippi man might become the third person over 60 to ever compete in a collegiate athletic contest of any kind this month. At 61 years young, Alan Moore of Mt. Olive has a jersey that is blue, a pair of cleats that are black - and mop of hair that's a distinguished mix of salt-and-pepper gray. "It's humbling to be here," Moore told The Daily News Thursday after another practice with the Faulkner University Eagles football team - out of Montgomery, Ala. "My biggest goal from the start was to earn my teammates's respect." Moore, a father of three and grandfather of five, will likely lace up as the second-string place kicker when the small Christian college opens its season Sept. 10 against Ave Maria of Florida. It will be only the third time in history that someone of Moore's advanced age has played in a college athletics contest, no matter what the sport, The Birmingham News reported. Tom Thompson was also 61 when he kicked off a single time during the 2009 football season for Austin (Texas) College, the paper said. Ken Mink set the mark as the oldest college athlete on record, hooping it up with the Roane State Community College b-ball team in East Tennessee at the age of 73, the paper added. "There's certainly a generational gap with the kids," Moore told The News. "They call me a little bit of everything- 'grandpa,' 'old man,' 'old school,' 'pops,' 'grand-daddy.' But I don't mind it. I eat it up. I'm having a ball. "I haven't had any problems with my body so far," Moore added. "No aches and pains whatsoever. That's kind of a miracle. The knees hurt every once-in-a-while, but we make it work day-to-day." As for Faulkner's coach, Gregg Baker, Moore said he might want to be careful using such time-honored football euphemisms as "veteran players" and "fighting in the trenches." People may just take him literally, as Moore said he spent a year in Vietnam as a U.S. Army infantryman. "Gosh, I don't know what made me come back. I Continue Reading

It’s Latin to them: Ashley Dupre’s tattoo flummoxes pros

Revealing Daily News pictures of Eliot Spitzer's favorite hooker cavorting on the beach gave rise to some obvious musings, but also some not-so-obvious, like: What exactly does that tattoo mean?Ashley Alexandra Dupre's teeny bikini exposed a Latin phrase inked on her lower belly: tutela valui. Experts said it was pseudo Latin, like the mostly meaningless Chinese characters some people tattoo on themselves - but even stodgy scholars were chuckling at the double entendres jumping out of it. Tutela, which is related to tutor, has to do with a protector or guardian. Valui appears to be a past form of the word strong. "So I guess you would say it means, 'I have a strong patron' or 'I have a strong keeper,'" said Doug Machle, assistant to the chairman in the classics department at the University of Washington. "Or, actually, it's more like, 'My guardian was strong.'" Others read it differently. Daniel Nodes, a classics professor at Ave Maria University in Florida, translated it as "I've been well and remain that way because I have protection." Mark Buchan, a classics professor at Columbia, took a different tack, musing that it could mean "safe haven." One California professor translated it as "I have been highly proficient in support" - which he further simplifies to "I have been an expert escort." In any case, Latin teachers are used to seeing lots of fishy tattoos. "Latin is really a living language - it's a lot more prevalent than you'd think," said Gerry Visco, administrator of the classics department at Columbia. "We get a lot of people calling up - every day, I'd say - wanting to put something on a mug or T-shirt. They think there's a team of scribes sitting here waiting to translate for them." Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

A group of children rode out Irma in a classroom. Here are their stories.

Ariannet Cardona played with a remote-controlled car under the beaming Florida sun Sunday in the backyard of her Vineyards home.It was a stark contrast to just one month before, when she was holed up in a stuffy classroom with 20 other evacuees as Hurricane Irma’s bands spiraled overhead.Ariannet was one of about a half-dozen children assigned to classroom 6-104 at the Pinecrest Elementary School shelter in Immokalee, where they spent more than 40 hours riding out the hurricane.The children underwent stressful journeys getting to the shelter and equally worrisome journeys returning home, uncertain of what they would or wouldn’t find. More: One month later: Everglades residents survive, thrive after Hurricane Irma More: Some Hurricane Irma evacuees return home to Vi at Bentley Village, but repairs ongoing More: Hurricane Irma costs Collier County students five vacation days More: #SWFLstrong: Giving back: 9-year-old thanks Irma heroes with heartwarming video As Ariannet giggled with her siblings Sunday, it seemed as if the hurricane had never happened.But it had.On Sept. 10, the day Irma’s eye barreled over Collier County, the billowing winds snatched their first victim: the power.Inside classroom 6-104, the steady hum of the air conditioning came to an abrupt halt. A generator-powered fluorescent light flickered on.Ariannet sat on the cool linoleum floor, took a deep breath of warm, heavy air and recounted the events from the day before.“First we went to a house in Eagle Creek that my mom cleans for work because the guys that live there let us borrow the house, but the windows didn’t have any protection, so we left and went to Ave Maria University,” she paused to catch her breath.“But they had no space, so then we went to Oakridge Middle, and that was full of people.”Irma’s winds were starting to whip across the county, and gas stations were running out of fuel.With Continue Reading

FREE TRIP ON ‘SECOND AVE.’ 200 share in Jewish culture

RUSSIAN-SPEAKING Jews have been getting a bissell of yiddishkite, or a dose of Yiddish culture, thanks to the philanthropy of a local community leader. More than 200 people, young and old, received transportation and a ticket to the acclaimed Off-Broadway musical "On Second Avenue," which chronicles the cultural history of Jewish immigrants on the lower East Side. "Jewish theater is a national treasure and should be supported," said Feliks Frenkel, president of the Council of Jewish Émigré Community Organizations. After watching the show - starring Mike Burstyn and consisting of vaudeville routines, clips and images - Frenkel said, "Everybody should see this play." So the investment firm owner sponsored a mass purchase of two Thursday matinee shows of the Folksbiene Yiddish Theatre production, which ends its one-year run today. "This culture and the performance of this material is a window into a whole world that people have left behind or their ancestors had lived in," said Zalmen Mlotek, Folksbiene's executive director. "Yiddish grew up on the soil and in the air of Mother Russia," he added. "Whether they speak it or not, it has a resonance." The 91-year-old theater group was holding its performances at the Jewish Community Center on the upper West Side. Members affiliated with the organization, an umbrella group for 42 Russian-speaking Jewish organizations, scored the tickets. While many of them are elderly, Frenkel insisted in including some younger folks as a way to introduce them to their folklore and narrow the generational gap in the community. "Culture is as important as the religious part of life or the economic part of life," Frenkel said. "On Second Avenue" offers a glimpse to the rich cultural roots of American Jews in an entertaining and engaging fashion. Much of it is in English and supertitles accompany the Yiddish portions. "Yiddish was the major vernacular of Ashkenazi [Eastern European] Jews," Mlotek noted. "It's a Continue Reading