The Lion's DEN

I’ve been getting a great history lesson from a third generation Floridian and DEN member, Mary Cox. She’s from Leon County and is a fascinating person. From bee keeping to banjo playing – well she’s a lady of many talents.

I had simply asked what would you like to re-name/nickname Team North Florida. It brought on a lot of discussions. Now before we go any further, let me also say that we will not be getting any items with this on it or a new logo. We are part of the Discovery Educator Network. This is just for fun. Something we’ll refer ourselves as.

LeonOkay, so Mary suggested that we name ourselves "de Leon Discoverers" after Juan Ponce de Leon, the first to discover Florida in 1513 and very early explorer of North Florida. She even suggested our slogan could be "DEN de Leon: causing an uproar in North Florida with unitedstreaming." (I found a great video segment about our founder in unitedstreaming. He never set up a colony here because he was killed by Indians off the Tampa Coast, but boy did he try!)

Others suggestions included

  • North Florida Voyagers: Going Where No Educator Has Gone Before (thanks for the great PowerPoint Marsha. I may have to borrow parts of it!)
  • The North Florida Navigators: Following the Star of Discovery
  • North Florida Pioneers: The First to Discover in Education
  • North Florida Explorers: Let no byte be unturned with DEN

There was another suggestion from Tom – but I’m not posting it.  Sorry Tom. It was a little over the top.

Okay, now I’m giving you a chance to earn those blogging points for the Good News Contest. Don’t forget to send Karen your wonderful ways that you use unitedstreaming. Share these wonderful ideas with the rest of Florida!

I’ll be in Flagler, Putnam and Pasco County this week. I hope to see some DEN members!


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  1. Mary Z. Cox said:

    Many of you have visited Florida’s oldest city and remember the striking “Bridge Of Lions” from the mainland to the beach. When we visited last weekend, it was visibily missing from the St. Augustine shoreline. I had no idea that a renovation was underway and thought maybe others may like to know about it too. 🙂
    St. Augustine, Florida’s historical “Bridge Of Lions” is currently undergoing renovation. A temporary bridge has been constructed for traffic and will be removed in four years when the 1927 bridge is complete. The famous stone lions at the entryway to the bridge have been packed and stored and will be replaced when the bridge is complete.

    Here is a photo taken from the bay on September 3, 2006
    to show the current status of construction.

    “Understanding Bridges”
    is an excellent United Streaming video that discusses many aspects of bridge construction and renovation.

    I’ve uploaded a photo taken from my new cell phone to the Educational Resources. Just type in “Bridge of Lions” in search.

    Here is a nice web page following the “Bridge Of Lions” project.

  2. Christy Smith said:

    I love the de Leon Discoverer’s and the slogan! I live only 30 minutes from St. Augustine and had no idea they were renovating! I checked out the photos that Mary linked- pretty cool!

  3. Debbie Bohanan said:

    If my Florida history brain is still working properly (I haven’t taught FL History since 2000-2001), he was shot with an arrow by the Calusa indians and died while trying to reach Puerto Rico. The Calusa’s averaged 6 feet in height, including the women so Ponce de Leon was definitely the underdog in that battle.

  4. Debra Gastelum said:

    I’m so happy to hear that the lions will be back. When in St. Augustine recently my whole family and I were disappointed that the bridge had been closed. I’m glad to know the new one is just a temp. 🙂

  5. Michele Futch said:

    Thank you, Mary! What a wonderful post with lots of great information. I am a native Floridian. I am embarrassed to say I have never been to St. Augustine. I have heard it was great! It is on my list of things to do within the next year.

  6. Debra Gastelum said:

    I LOVE St. Augustine! Being born and raised in Putnam County, I’ve had the pleasure of being about 30 minutes away from what I consider one of the most interesting cities around.

    I enjoy visiting the fort (which is said to be haunted), the lighthouse, and the whole downtown area with its historical look and atomosphere.

    It’s a magical place with a special “feel” to it for those aware enough to notice.

    When we go downtown, it’s not about the shopping for us as it is for many of the tourists. It’s about knowing that we’re walking on the same path where generations of people walked.

    It certainly makes one feel insignificant to realize that the buildings were there before we were born and, if weather permits, will remain long after we’re gone.

  7. Michele Futch said:

    Thanks Debra!

    I’ll have to take your advice and visit soon. My Dad has been wanting to take my son to see all of the historic things there. We’ll have to make a weekend trip soon.

    Is it only 30 minutes from Palatks? My husband has a lot of family members there. We might could get some of them to meet us there to sightsee with us?

  8. Tom Turner said:

    I still think mine was the BEST….but I understand Danielle 😛

    St. Augustine is absolutely my most favorite place to visit in Florida. I’m wierd like that, but when I’m walking through the Castillo and down the Old Quarter area I can literally feel the people talking to me. It’s strange, and yes, I really shouldn’t admit to that out loud, might get Baker Acted now 🙁

  9. Danielle Abernethy said:

    Tom, you should have Baker Acted months ago! We won’t start now.

    Sounds like we need to plan an event in St. Augustine. Let’s look in February. I’m kind of booked until then. Come up with some great projects and see if we can find a place to meet with wireless. Shelley mentioned a cigar shop – but I’m thinking of something a little more conducive to working. 🙂 Anyone got any ideas?

  10. Mary Z. Cox said:

    Danielle–please, please don’t book it in February. From the 16-25th, I teach a workshop (Be A Star, Play the Banjo) at the John C. Campbell Folkschool in Brasstown, North Carolina.
    It is a Danish Folk School that has been in existance for over 75 years and I love their educational tradition. (students learn the most when they are having fun!)
    Anyway, folks fly in from all over the world to attend and it takes me most of the month to get all my lesson plans and handouts prepared and set up guest performers etc–also it takes up most of my personal leave days for the year–so hope you will consider another month–because I’d really like to go too!
    Actually, folks in St. Augustine really rave about how beautiful it is to go out on the sunset cruise on the schooner in December and see all the Christmas lights from the shore. Also–it goes right under the old and new bridge!
    Just a thought!
    Best wishes,
    Mary Z. Cox

  11. Michele Futch said:

    I think a St. Augustine Event would be wonderful! To think about and see all the history there will be phenomenal!

    In my previous profession, I was a Mental Health woker. I have been trained and am certified to Baker Act individuals that need it. You better stay far away from me, Tom! I can find out where you live and work. Beware of men wearing white uniforms who may come looking for you to take you to the Asylum….(LOL)

  12. Debbie Bohanan said:

    Didn’t your mother teach you that you shouldn’t tell other people if you are hearing voices? We are already crazy DEN members, now you will have people thinking you are in need of a white coat with long sleeves. 🙂

  13. Debra Gastelum said:

    Don’t worry about it, Tom! 🙂

    Some get it and some never will. 😉

    The voices are there. You just have to listen.

    And last time I checked, most people think you have to be a little crazy to be a teacher. Let’em think what they want. I wouldn’t want it any other way!

  14. Susan Vinson said:

    Hum, St. Augustine….I haven’t been there since…well, sadly I can’t remember when! Any trained memory recovery specialists out there? How far is St. Augustine from Tally?

  15. Danielle Abernethy said:

    When I went to do Digital Storytelling in the City of Gold (my son’s nickname for Palatka since it had a rainbow over it when we came into town), my parents took Joey to St. Augustine while I did the training. So other than stopping at the bookstore and for dinner one time, sad to say, I have yet to be there either. But don’t worry. I’ve already sent off some emails inquiring about some possible events. 🙂

  16. Cheryl Woolwine said:

    I live in St. Augustine – and agree it would be a great plac efor an event. I would be glad to assist Danielle in the organization. Actually thanks to a local wireless company all of downtown is WIFI including the fort so we could even meet on the grassy knoles of the fort or the market place area, with St. George Street in between! Yes Christmas is a beautiful time of year in St. Aug. I look forward to you all coming over!

  17. Danielle Abernethy said:

    Nathan, just leave a comment here about what you think would be a great name. Cheryl, can you find out about the Sunset Christmas Cruise and also about any other reasonable tour.

  18. Mary Z. Cox said:

    While we are in the corridor of Florida History–I just posted a short article–with a United Streaming Link to one of Florida’s most glossed over villians!
    Danielle–bet you never were prepared for North Florida and all its history and its natives’ that hear voices (Tom) and historians that believe history is not just the past, but the present and future and continue to wrestle our nineteenth century villians into the 21st century! 🙂

  19. Cheryl Woolwine said:

    St. Augustine is a very educational city. There is more there than we could possibly do in a single visit. The Fort, The Ligthouse, and St. George street, are just a few. Unfortunately, I believe the dinner cruises are closed right now because of the refurbishment of the Bridge of Lions. But I know we can find other ways to entertain ourselves!

  20. Cheryl Woolwine said:

    I have to go with:The North Florida Navigators: Following the Star of Discovery
    It reminds me of Peter Reynolds Book “The North Star” The North Star is more than just a book —it’s an educational philosophy about individual learning and creative thinking. Dedicated to all the parents and teachers of the world and to those who were brave enough to follow their dreams. What better way to represent us than as fellow navigators of “The North Star”

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