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This Hour: Latest Florida news, sports, business and entertainment

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Part of Fla. history to step back into spotlight

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The public will soon get a look inside an historic house hidden in trees near the Florida Governor's Mansion.

The state will open the Grove, once the residence of former Gov. LeRoy Collins, later this year as a museum and architectural classroom.

Florida has spent nearly $6 million to rehabilitate the 10-acre estate. Transforming the mansion to meet modern building codes has been a time-consuming undertaking. There also have been legal battles about property next to the site that the state wants to buy for parking.

The Greek Revival style mansion, built with slave labor, is thought to have been finished by 1831. Even today the front windows have some of the same glass used when the home was built.


Florida man examines oil spill dolphin deaths

MANATEE, Fla. (AP) - A south Florida man's work is helping researchers better understand long-term damage to dolphins from the massive 2010 BP oil spill.

The Bradenton Herald reported on Sunday that Randall S. Wells is helping federal researchers asses the health of dolphins in the northern Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast. He is the director of the Chicago Zoological Society's Sarasota Dolphin Research Program.

Wells regularly surveys a control group of about 160 dolphins living in the Sarasota Bay region and compares the health of those dolphins with the Louisiana dolphins.

So far, he has found that the south Florida dolphins are healthier than the Louisiana dolphins. But Wells says more study is needed to fully determine how the spill impacted dolphin populations.


Bradenton residents re-enact explorer's landing

(Information in the following story is from: The Bradenton (Fla.) Herald ,

MANATEE, Fla. (AP) - Dozens of history buffs from throughout the Bradenton area are celebrating the75th annual re-enactment of Hernado De Soto's 1539 landing in the region.

They gathered Saturday at the De Soto Memorial in Bradenton.

Actors in dressed period clothing portrayed the Spanish explorer and his crew. Jim Burke has volunteered at the park for years and was selected this year to play De Soto. Burke told the Bradenton Herald that he and the other actors work hard to make the event as historically accurate as possible.


Polish man crosses Atlantic Ocean in kayak

(Information in the following story is from: Daytona Beach (Fla.) News-Journal,

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - A 67-year-old Polish adventurer has paddled his kayak into New Smyrna Beach to mark the end of a 6,000-mile, trans-Atlantic journey.

They Daytona Beach News-Journal reported that Aleksander "Olek" Doba kissed the ground after he landed on Saturday. He was greeted by hundreds of cheering supporters. A flotilla of fellow kayakers joined him as he paddled into the marina.

Doba left Lisbon, Portugal on Oct. 5, but was forced to stop in Bermuda for repairs to his 21-foot kayak from Feb. 13 to March 23.

He said the most-difficult part of his trip was navigating through the choppy waters of the Gulf Stream just days before he reached the Florida coast.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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