Bill Andersen

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge critters settling in at Navarre location

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge critters settling in at Navarre location

After nearly three years, it’s official. With tears in her eyes, Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge Executive Director Carol “Stormy” Andersen jumped for joy watching as the last vehicle of the convoy from Okaloosa Island pulled into the refuge’s new home on Clopton Circle Nov. 10. In tow were the sick, injured and abandoned wildlife in […]

Refuge asks public to name owl ambassador

Refuge asks public to name owl ambassador

Members of the public will have a chance to name the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge’s newest animal ambassador as part of a fundraiser for the nonprofit animal rescue organization. Executive Director Carol Andersen said the currently nameless bird is one of two great horned owls that will call the refuge’s new location in Navarre their […]

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge grand opening Dec. 7

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge grand opening Dec. 7

The Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge’s board of directors voted this month to set the date for the Refuge’s move to its new campus just north of Navarre in Santa Rosa County Nov. 10. A public grand opening will follow Dec. 7, at 9 a.m., at 3051 Cloptons Circle in Holley.     Read the full […]

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge grand opening on horizon

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge grand opening on horizon

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge plans to open doors on its new Navarre facilities June 15, welcoming visitors and assisting sick and injured wildlife in the area. Work to bring the nonprofit to Holley has been underway for years, and the shapes of buildings have emerged over the fence line of the vacant land along Clopton […]

Three things to know: Board of County Commissioners

Three things to know: Board of County Commissioners

284 lot subdivision riling neighbors County Commissioners got an earful from concerned residents Tuesday morning as yet another subdivision development drew ire from neighbors. Forest Bay Estates is a new subdivision proposed for 210-acres of vacant land located west of Edgewood Drive and east of River Birch Road. Read the full article in the Jan. […]

Tourism council backs funding for wildlife refuge

Tourism council backs funding for wildlife refuge

After balking at a request for nearly half a million dollars, the county’s Tourist Development Council did agree Jan. 3 to fund $117,000 for animal habitats at the new Holley location of the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge (ECWR). While ECWR has steadily been securing donations since December 2016, the timeline for completion of the new […]

Wildlife Refuge raising the walls on new location

Wildlife Refuge raising the walls on new location

Workers poured concrete foundations Dec. 3 for the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge’s (ECWR) new medical facility and education center located in Holley, bringing the nonprofit a step closer to opening their doors to the public for the first time. ECWR Executive Director Carol “Stormy” Andersen said the current schedule puts their grand opening for the […]

Phase I price tag $3 million

Phase I price tag $3 million

Based on Monday’s Board of County Commissioners meeting, the Panhandle Butterfly House (PBH) is no longer part of Navarre Park’s Phase I makeover, but it is not being relocated to the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge either. That issue aside, County Administrator Dan Schebler told the commissioners that they need an answer to move forward on […]

Panhandle Butterfly House seeks third option

Panhandle Butterfly House seeks third option

In the ongoing saga of the Panhandle Butterfly House’s (PBH) future, a decision could finally come next Thursday at the Santa Rosa Board of County Commissioners meeting. But that answer may not be what the PBH leadership wants to hear. Read the full article in the Dec. 6 issue of Navarre Press. Visit www.navarrepress.com/subscribe to […]

County admin recommends butterfly house at wildlife refuge

County admin recommends butterfly house at wildlife refuge

In one of his last acts as District 4 County Commissioner, Rob Williamson said he has lost confidence in the fiscal viability of the Panhandle Butterfly House. “Where I once had a confidence that they would be able to run a yearlong, sustainable operation and take on the expenses that they have never before paid […]

Butterfly House future still up in the air

Butterfly House future still up in the air

A decision has been put off once again on the location of a new Panhandle Butterfly House (PBH) vivarium and learning center. During the Board of County Commissioners meeting Monday morning, the board opted to postpone a final determination until the PBH could provide a more comprehensive business plan. Read the full article in the […]

Details revealed about potential Panhandle Butterfly House move

Details revealed about potential Panhandle Butterfly House move

As progress moves forward on the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge’s (ECWR) new location in Holley, the nonprofit awaits a decision by the Panhandle Butterfly House (PBH) about where their future location will be. The future of the PBH is currently in limbo as their building is set for demolition at the start of 2019. Read […]

Navarre Park’s Trojan butterfly won’t fly

Navarre Park’s Trojan butterfly won’t fly

We want to preface this with a simple statement of goal. We want the Panhandle Butterfly House to succeed. They are an asset to our community. But, in May we said: this is a bad idea. Dropping a small nonprofit program that has no stable revenue stream or even its own book keeper into a […]

Panhandle Butterfly House future in limbo

Panhandle Butterfly House future in limbo

When the doors closed on the Panhandle Butterfly House (PBH) this season, they also closed on the group’s 21 years at its location in Navarre Park. The shop, vivarium and gardens, created through donations and thousands of volunteer hours, are scheduled to be demolished in 2019. Read the full article in the Oct. 11 issue […]

Wildlife refuge officially breaks ground

Wildlife refuge officially breaks ground

In a celebration honoring community support, the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge ceremonially broke ground Saturday at its new facility in Holley. After brief speeches and thank-yous under an old-growth oak tree, the refuge’s board and a group of dignitaries “turned dirt” on the property, launching the building phase of a project that has been in […]

County holds firm on funding for new butterfly house

County holds firm on funding for new butterfly house

Stay the course. That is what the Santa Rosa Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) decided to do with millions of dollars of funding for the Navarre Park Master Site Plan. The Tourist Development Council (TDC) had asked the board to re-evaluate a proposed loan of more than $1.8 million, to be paid back with future […]

RED Day goes wild at Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge

RED Day goes wild at Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge

Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge got a helping hand last week as Keller Williams employees throughout Navarre took a break from selling real estate to give back to their community. Roughly 30 volunteers clad in red T-shirts worked power tools, trimmed brush, painted logos and installed animal closures for the future location of the rescue organization […]

Flight to freedom: Rehabilitated pelicans form new forever flock

Flight to freedom: Rehabilitated pelicans form new forever flock

As the sun set over a silent stretch of East Bay in Holley, three juvenile pelicans took flight toward freedom for the first time in months Wednesday, Nov. 16, during a hard release by the Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge. The trio came to the refuge roughly two months ago, each in a less than healthy […]