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News Story
Updated: 10/09/2013 08:00:01AM

Cracker Storytelling Festival this weekend

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Homeland Heritage Park and the Bartow Public Library host the 25th Annual Cracker Storytelling Festival on Oct. 11 and 12.

The two-day event consists of the Cracker Storytelling Festival on Friday and Saturday, and evening Ghost Stories on Friday.

The festival takes place at Homeland Heritage Park from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and features storytellers local to Polk County and Florida. Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for children.

On Friday, student Cameron Cato performs a Cracker Whip demonstration. On Saturday, local expert Marty Higgenbotham conducts an antiques appraisal that is open to public viewing. Saturday also features a cracker whip contest. The contest costs a $10 registration fee.

Ghost Stories occur at the Bartow Public Library from 7-9 p.m. on Friday and feature spooky stories for all ages. Admission is $4 for adults and $2 for children. Tickets are available at the event or in advance at the library

For information, or to volunteer, call 863-534-3766. Homeland Heritage Park is located at 249 Church Ave. in Homeland. The Bartow Public Library is located at 2150 S. Broadway Ave. in Bartow.

Visit the Cracker Storytelling Festival website for complete details at

Jail tour coming up

A trip through the old Polk County Jail is back this year.

From 6-11 p.m., on Oct. 18, 19, 25 and 26 at 455 North Broadway Avenue, Bartow, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office has the Haunted Jail Tour back for its third year.

The cost is a $5 donation with proceeds benefiting the United Way of Central Florida.

A new kid friendly Trick-Or-Treat is offered from 6-8 p.m. each night of the Jail Tour.

Hot dogs and hamburgers will be on sale every night.

For information, contact Deputy Stacy Bishop, or Deputy Ashley Bates at 863-534-6123.

Million dollars returned to estate

The million-dollar Florida home of a murdered lottery winner has been stripped from his convicted killer and returned to his estate.

Circuit Judge J. Dale Durrance ruled that Dorice Moore never paid Abraham Shakespeare. A lawyer representing Shakespeare’s estate said it will be sold to benefit his two sons.

Shakespeare won a $17 million lump sum in 2006 but he lost most of his money. During Moore’s trial last year, prosecutors showed she befriended Shakespeare to take control of his remaining wealth, including his home. He disappeared in April 2009 and his body was found nine months later under a slab behind a home owned by Moore. He had been shot twice.

Moore was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison.

— The Associated Press

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