News Briefs

Veterans Affairs Office expands operations

To better serve area veterans, the Beaufort County Veterans Affairs (VA) Office has expanded its days of operation from one day to two days a week at its Hilton Head Island office location, 539 William Hilton Parkway.  Staff will be available on Tuesdays and Thursdays by appointment. Additionally, the VA Office will open a satellite office next month in Sun City at Pinckney Hall, 114 Sun City Lane, Bluffton.  Beginning March 11, 2015, staff will be available every second and fourth Wednesday by appointment. Along with the Hilton Head Island and Sun City locations, the Beaufort County VA Office operates from the County’s Human Services Building, 1905 Duke Street, Suite 205, Beaufort, where staff are available Monday through Friday. For more information about assistance offered by the Beaufort County VA Office, please call 843-255-6880.

Beaufort day dock earns federal grant

A federal grant received this month is the final funding needed to move forward with plans for a day dock boating facility at Beaufort’s Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park.This is the third award to Beaufort through the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Boating Infrastructure Grant program. The day dock is a focal point within the vision of the 2012 Civic Master Plan. The City of Beaufort, through a series of other grant and local funding sources, set aside in prior years $300,000 toward the $500,000 budgeted project, said Kathy Todd, finance director for the City. In addition, the City has welcomed two public partners: Main Street Beaufort and Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce. These partners pledged a combined $22,368 toward actively marketing the day dock to transient boaters on a local, regional and national scale. Tentative specifications call for a 200-foot long by 10-foot wide heavy-duty floating dock in an orientation parallel with the existing seawall and approximately 500 feet from the edge of the navigation channel. Gangways that meet federal requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act will connect the floating dock to the existing seawall.

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Walker Dean, far right, and Eric Taylor entertained the growing First Friday crowd with popular songs