Friday night football is a tradition in Georgia communities. And it’s not just a big deal for sports fans. It’s also big for local businesses. Folkston is one such example. The town of 2,800 people is in southeast Georgia, between Waycross and the Florida line. And when the Charlton County High School Indians play home games, the community comes alive.
A vast wildfire burning in the Okefenokee Swamp since late April is just shy of 300,000 acres in size after soaking rains in southeast Georgia slowed the blaze's growth over the weekend. A spokesman for the federal and state firefighters battling the swamp blaze, said Monday that 2 ½ to 4 inches of rain fell across much of the fire Friday and Saturday. The Honey Prairie fire was estimated to be 299,909 acres Monday.
Fire information officials at the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge say the Honey Prairie Fire continues to burn, and a new blaze has been identified. Officials said Tuesday the Honey Prairie Fire has burned about 290,000 acres, including 2,250 acres in the past two days.
Firefighters have contained 55% of the massive blaze burning in the Okefenokee Swamp. Progress came quickly this week as wind, humidity and temperatures combined to allow crews to start controlled burns to corral the blaze. The fire has consumed the refuge's lower third.
The Nature Conservancy has bought more than a thousand acres of fire-scorched land and donated it to the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. The land is on the refuge's northwest edge, where wildfires burned a half million acres in 2007.
This special feature is Georgia's contribution to NPR's series taking a look at Interstate 95. In it, we look back to more prosperous times along US 301, built to be the shortest route to Florida, before the Interstate came. Can the state continue to support its welcome center?