Monthly Archives: February 2010

Mokikami Gardens offer Japanese legacy in Delray Beach

The Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens is a unique experience. The gardens and museum are open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. They offer an intriguing look at the Japanese culture and lifestyle. The Morikami offers rock gardens, art and sculpture exhibits, a gift shop and waterfalls that are breathtaking. For more info visit

All photos by Christina Cernik, Photo Editor

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Musicians unite for Haiti relief

By Evelyn Ticona & Jen Rodino
Managing Editor & Features Editor

Singer-songwriter Shaun Groves urged the Palm Beach Atlantic University family to support Haiti relief by watching the upcoming “Help Haiti Live” concert Saturday.

DeSantis Family Chapel served as the stage to host Groves last week.

Groves also offered a free concert in chapel Tuesday night where, along with his performance, Groves sent a message about salvation and God’s purpose for us in life.

The relief concert will take place at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville at 8:30 p.m., and can be seen live online at

Groves is a partner of Compassion International, a child development organization that sponsors children from third world countries.

He said it took Compassion International longer than expected to put the concert together, leaving little time to promote.

Photo by Christina Cernik, Photo Editor

“We want you to help us spread the word,” Groves told the crowd.

Big Kenny will host the concert and singers like Mat Kearney, Brandon Heath, Dave Barnes and Matt West will perform for free to raise funds for the earthquake relief.

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Lynn inspired by lives of service

By Collier Rice
Contributing Writer

On Jan. 12, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake rocked the island of Haiti. The total destruction was covered by local and national media outlets.

The loss of life was staggering and far-reaching. In such close proximity, South Florida felt the aftershocks.

While many are scrambling to rebuild the nation, let us remember those who ventured to Haiti before the tragedy, to spread education, hope and love.

Lynn University in Boca Raton is a private school of approximately 2,400 students. A team of 14 students and faculty was in Haiti as part of “Journey of Hope” mission at the time of the earthquake. Eight were evacuated shortly after the quake and returned to campus. However, six were left unaccounted for.

Weeks went by as the search continued, each day becoming more difficult. As rescue workers sifted through the rubble of the Hotel Montana where Lynn students and faculty were staying, South Florida held its collective breath, waiting for answers.

On Jan. 27, Lynn University president Kevin Ross said it was time to grieve.
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Palm Beach debuts cruise

By Anna Zetterberg
Assist. Managing Editor

For the first time in 14 years, the Port of Palm Beach opens its doors to international cruises.

via Orlando Sentinel

Students looking for a vacation on a budget won’t have to look far anymore since the Bahamas Celebration, owned by Celebration Cruise Lines, will call the Port of Palm Beach home beginning March 15. It previously sailed out of Port Everglades in Ft. Lauderdale, the largest cruise terminal in the world.

The much smaller Port of Palm Beach has offered only gambling day cruises since 1996.
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Beacon Features: Top 10 African-American films

By Kristina Webb
Copy Editor

In celebration of Black History Month, here’s a list of notable African-American films.
While some are historically significant, others represent ground-breaking performances by African-American actors and actresses.
After reading through the list, leave us a comment and share your favorite African-American film.

• The Color Purple (1985):

via Wikipedia

Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker and directed by Steven Spielberg, this film stars Whoopie Goldberg as Celie Harris, a young African-American woman who sustains abuse throughout her life.
Set in the early and mid-1900s, “The Color Purple” follows Celie from a childhood where she is sexually abused and impregnated by her father, to a marriage where she is physically and emotionally abused and treated as a slave.
Although nominated for 11 Academy Awards, it did not win any. Goldberg won a Golden Globe for Best Actress.

• Amistad (1997):
Set in 1839 and also directed by Spielberg, “Amistad” details a mutiny aboard a slave ship and the subsequent legal ramifications.
Featuring breathtaking performances by Djimon Hounsou, Anthony Hopkins and Morgan Freeman, “Amistad” provides a glimpse into the legal system of the 1800s and how issues of slavery were handled.

• To Kill a Mockingbird (1962):
This film, based on the award-winning novel by Harper Lee, tells the story of Depression-era lawyer Atticus Finch and his family.
Finch, played by Gregory Peck, takes on the case of an African-American man, played by Brock Peters, who is unfairly accused of rape in their small town in Alabama. The racist attitude of the town is brought to light as Finch struggles to defend his client and keep his family safe.

• Malcolm X (1992):
Spike Lee directs this film about the life of African-American activist Malcolm X, portrayed by Denzel Washington.
After his father is killed by the Ku Klux Klan, he is put on a path that eventually leads to his becoming the face of the Nation of Islam and the anti-white movement.
However, after a pilgrimage to Mecca, he realizes the error of his ideology and converts to Sunni Islam.
Washington puts forth a phenomenal performance, and was nominated for Best Actor at the Academy Awards. However, he lost to Al Pacino.

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Beacon Features: West Palm sparkles and shines

By Jen Herring
Contributing Writer

We all know the familiar saying, “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend.” For weeks, local residents had their tickets and were ready to spend Presidents Day weekend viewing elegant antiques that catch the eye at first sight.

“Tens of thousands” of people attended the Palm Beach Jewelry, Art and Antique Show, show officials said. That number exceeded last year’s attendance at the show, which is billed as the largest art and antique show in the nation.

Photo by Evelyn Ticona


The show, which took place at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, featured over 200 international exhibitors from the United States, Canada, the Netherlands, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, France, Turkey and Sweden.
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Beacon Sports: Men’s lacrosse struggles with losses

By Michael Noble
Contributing Writer

On Feb. 12, the Palm Beach Atlantic University lacrosse team was defeated by its rival Miami University with a score of 7-11, and then again on Sunday by Georgia Southern University, with a loss of 16-15.

Team Captain Frederic “Fritz” Van der Grift said that their fundamentals need special attention.

“Missed ground balls, dropped passes and failed clears were all key reasons we didn’t come up with a win,” Van der Grift said.

The Sailfish have never won against Miami, a Division I school, but have come close every game for the past three seasons.

“The closeness of each game has proven to Miami that we are a legitimate threat to them,” Van der Grift said. “As a result, they take these games seriously, as do we.”

Also, Van der Grift said that the team has trouble “getting off the bus,” or properly getting ready for the game.

To eliminate the problem, the team’s head coach Chris “Suds” Southard has also created new routines for the team’s warm-up.

“So far, it’s helped, but the physical preparation is only half the battle,” Van der Grift said. “We need to come out better prepared mentally too.”

As one of the four team captains, Van der Grift has a prerogative to keep the team’s morale high, regardless of whether they win, loose or draw.

“Finding a healthy balance of seriousness, intensity, and fun with the sport is something I hope all of us can find,” Van der Grift said.

Southard offers Bible studies on Monday nights for the team, so they can grow in their faith.

“The brotherhood I have experienced on the team since transferring here my sophomore year has been the fundamental reason for why I have grown so much in my faith,” Van der Grift said.

With nine more games to be played, the Sailfish lacrosse team still has a long season ahead of them.

PBA plays Georgia State University on March 5, at Cardinal Newman High School in West Palm Beach. The school is located at 512 Spencer Drive off Okeechobee Boulevard.

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Beacon Sports: Intramural basketball heats up

By Clint Longenecker
Contributing Writer

This week begins a series showcasing highlights from different intramural sports.

Last week featured some hotly contested games on the intramural basketball court, but one matchup stood above the rest.

The premier game of the week saw the pharmacy school team, Jay Jackson and the Tito Jacksons, square off against one of the league’s most popular and well-known squads, the White Magic.

Both the White Magic and Jay Jackson and the Tito Jacksons came into the Thursday night contest with a 2-1 record. They also both realized that to remain within striking distance of the two remaining undefeated teams, one would need to come out victorious.

The game’s crucial nature drew in crowds of fans to watch. The White Magic, last year’s intramural champion and Facebook sensation, had its usual backing of loyal supporters.

Despite their faithful Facebook following, the veteran White Magic stumbled out of the gate as the Jay Jackson and the Tito Jacksons jumped out to an early and convincing lead in the first half.

The White Magic were able to take the momentum back before halftime, notching a five point lead.

The pride of the pharmacy school, Jay Jackson, was determined to regain the lead for his intellectually and scholastically superior squad.

A key stretch in the second half saw veteran sharpshooter Michael Hux stroke clutch three pointers on back to back possessions with just a few minutes left, taking his team from down four points to holding a two point advantage.

True to his nickname, “Big Fundamental,” White Magic’s Adam McGregor played tough down the stretch to counter Hux’s hot hand, registering 21 points, as the game’s leading scorer.

Jackson’s leadership and exceptional ball-handling skills were the difference in the game’s crucial moments, as the White Magic could do little to break Jackson of getting his shot or setting up teammates in a great position to make theirs.

In the end, brains overcame brawn as the pharmacy team escaped with a 49-48 victory.

The White Magic were unable to hit a bucket at the buzzer that would have crowned them victorious.

The win put the Jacksons one game behind B.Young and the White Hawks for the league’s top spot.

The victory by the Jacksons was a true team effort, as every player that suited up notched at least six points.

With the White Magic losing their second game it drops them into the jumble of six teams with a record of 2-2.

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Beacon Sports: Errors plague Sailfish

By Michele Kappas
Contributing Writer

At Dave Manzo Field Tuesday the Palm Beach Atlantic University Sailfish led 7-6 in the ninth inning, only to see Nova Southeastern University pile on six runs to win 12-7.

PBA fell to 0-5 for the season, with 17 errors in the first five games after Tuesday’s defeat.

Although this game seemed to be an improvement for the Sailfish offensively, the errors on PBA’s side and the hits that Nova Southeastern University got late in the game cost greatly.

“I’m just disappointed. We could easily be 5-0 instead of 0-5,” Head Coach Gary Carter said after the game. “Our errors are killing us more than anything.”
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The votes are in!

We’ve tallied the votes from our Feb. 8 polls. Here are the results.


It’s just a movie, what’s the big deal?                                                 60%

It makes a valid point about having faith.                                        20%

It’s a mockery of Christianity.                                                               19%

Other: “Russell Crowe is Robin Hood.”                                                1%

(Personally, I’m with the Russell Crowe guy, but what does that have to do with “Legion”?)

Your Favorite Apple Products

MacBook                                         57%

iPhone                                              29%

iMac                                                  14%

Make sure to check back every week for new polls! We want your opinion!

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Found: The sock strikes back

We’ve seen it before: crazy things left on the ground around campus. Perhaps the most notable for followers of the Beacon Blog – and before that, the now-defunct PBA Local – was a sock found on the ground in the Pembroke commuter lot.

The sock was made famous not just by PBA Local, but also by Extra Credit, a blog written by Palm Beach Post contributing writers.

Well folks, the sock is back.

The sock was found today in the walkway between Oceanview and Baxter halls, suspiciously close to the last known location. We think it’s the other half of the pair.

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Poll: Online dating

Check out the three articles in this week’s Beacon about dating, then let us know what you think of online dating. Is it okay? Does the concept strike you as weird?

Sound off on our poll, then leave us a comment and let us know your experience with online dating.

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Police provide sketch of rapist

By Jen Rodino
Features Editor

Local authorities continue searching for the man they believe has committed three separate brutal sexual assaults in the past nine months. Many are concerned and fear that the man will attack again in the near future.

The first assault took place in Jupiter on April 9. The other two occurred in the West Palm Beach-Lake Worth area on Aug. 7 and Jan. 16.

Capt. Carol Gregg, head of Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office’s special investigations division, told the Palm Beach Post, “all three women were seriously injured and the ones attacked in August and January required hospitalization.”

Sketch courtesy of PBSO

The three women were alone when attacked. It appears that the rapist chooses his victims based on their isolation.

The rapist violently attacks the victim and beats them about the head and face for a few minutes, then leaves.

Palm Beach County detectives refuse to comment any further than what has been reported in the Feb. 4 issue of the Palm Beach Post, but indicated that no new attacks have been reported.

However, agencies across the West Palm Beach and Lake Worth areas are still alert and following the open case.

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Marijuana linked to fatal crashes

By Samone Davis
Contributing Writer

Students who consider smoking marijuana “no big deal” might ponder this: Approximately 6 to 11 percent of fatal accident victims tested positive for THC, the main active chemical in pot.

Those figures come from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The statistics hit close to home just a few weeks ago, when three young Coral Springs teens died in a car accident in which the driver had been smoking marijuana, according to police.

The major active chemical in marijuana is delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which causes the mind-altering effects of marijuana intoxication.

From the fatal accident, lab results showed “a recent ingestion” of THC by the teen driver, said Michael Wagner, senior toxicologist of the Broward County Medical Examiner’s Office. At the THC level found, he said, “The individual would be under the influence of the drug and would exhibit CNS (central nervous system) impairment.”

Safety officials say that marijuana affects many skills required for safe driving, such as alertness, concentration, coordination, and reaction time. It also becomes difficult to judge distances and react to signals and sounds on the road once a driver has smoked pot.

“If you cause a problem and have any level of drug in your system, you are guilty of using an illicit substance and drug use will be considered a contributing factor,” said Vince Diller, director of Health & Wellness at Palm Beach Atlantic University.

In a 2008 survey, 8.1 percent of the PBA student population reported that they had used marijuana in the past year, and 2.2 percent said they still use the drug. The university used the CORE Survey of Alcohol and Drugs, which is nationally standardized. PBA is one of the few Christian institutions that have made the investment to investigate these issues, said Diller.

“The responses are anonymous and compared to national and institutional averages,” said Diller. He said that only 24.1 percent of PBA students considered marijuana use a health risk.

According to a report on, marijuana is the nation’s most commonly used illegal drug.

Many young people smoke marijuana because their siblings, friends or older family members use it, and some because of peer pressure. Others may think it’s cool to smoke pot, unaware of the health risks involved.

Research has shown that when a person smokes marijuana, THC passes from the lungs into the bloodstream, which transports it to the brain and other organs.

When it reaches the brain, THC connects with a certain type of receptor on nerve cells in areas that affect coordination, thought, memory, concentration, sensory and time perception, and pleasure.

This is what causes the user to get “high.”

Short-term effects of marijuana use include impairment in driving skills, impaired memory, difficulty in thinking or solving problems, anxiety attacks, impaired muscle coordination and impaired judgment.

Researchers say that long-term effects include changes in the brain, fertility implications, changes in blood pressure, and emotional problems.

In addition to the health risks, the use of marijuana is illegal in the state of Florida.

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Lights, camera, caught: Stoplight cameras pop up near campus

By Eileen Louissaint
Contributing Writer

Think before you speed through the next red light: The traffic paparazzi are watching.

Anna Zetterberg / Asst. Managing Editor

More than half of the U.S. states and many other countries use traffic cameras at intersections to photograph drivers disobeying traffic laws. Public officials insist that their purpose remains to decrease the amount of red light running and prevent accidents.

“The goal is public safety,” said Peter Robbins, West Palm Beach public information officer. “It turns out that in urban areas and in downtown the common cause [of accidents] is red light running.”

A red light violation could cost you $125. Since the introduction of red light cameras to West Palm Beach in November 2009, the city has granted violators a 90-day grace period. This will end on Feb. 21, though, when violators will start getting fines in the mail instead of warnings.

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Beacon Sports: In brief: Softball starts strong, basketball season ends

By Eric Quinones
Contributing Writer

After winning their opening double header, the Palm Beach Atlantic University Sailfish softball team played a second double header on Feb. 6 against Eckerd College. This time they won one game but lost the second.

The baseball team’s opening home game was rained out, so the team’s first game was at Southeastern University on Feb. 6.

The game was a double header, with the Sailfish going 0 and 2 but playing well. In the first game the Sailfish went down to Southeastern University 7-3. The team’s next home games will be Feb. 16, 19 and 20.

The men’s basketball team is nearing the end of the season. On Feb. 6 they suffered a 66-55 loss to Barry University.

Despite good efforts from Chris Joseph who scored 12 points, and Hunter Ross who scored 11 points and  8 rebounds, the Sailfish struggled in the second half of the game.

The team will play their final game on Feb. 27 at University of Tampa.

The women’s basketball team has already finished its season. Finishing with a record of 6-18, the team won the final game against Ave Maria University 69-49.

The men’s tennis season began on Feb. 5, and women’s tennis season began on Feb. 3.

The men’s team opened with a dominating victory over Saint Leo University.

The women’s team had a rough start with two straight losses to Florida Technical University and Saint Leo.

The next match for the men will be Feb. 17 at Lynn University in Boca Raton. The women’s next match will be Feb. 18 at Lynn University.

For the most up-to-date information check,

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Beacon Sports: Despite rain delays, Carter excited

By Michele Kappas
Contributing Writer

Although the Palm Beach Atlantic University baseball season is off to a rough start, the players’ excitement about new coach Gary Carter still remains.

“I’m looking forward to gaining the knowledge and experience from a Hall of Famer,” senior Buddy Fisher said.

Carter was understandably upset when the first two home games were rained out. The team opened the season by losing a double header away from home. Carter realizes it is going to take time to get the team to realize its potential.

“I always have high expectations as I want to win every game,” Carter said. “I hate to lose. But taking everything into consideration I would be very happy with a 500 percent average.”

Carter added he was excited about the team’s mix of youth and experience, with many new players as well as 10 seniors.
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Beacon Sports: Polo pioneer leaves legacy

By Anna Zetterberg
Assistant Managing Editor

The young village of Wellington has stepped into the international spotlight, making a name for itself in the lavish world of polo.

Polo in Wellington flaunts an enviable lifestyle and rich equestrian culture. It all began with William T. “Bill” Ylvisaker’s sharp entrepreneurship and passion for polo.

Photo by Mariella Garcia-Velez

On Saturday, Feb. 6, Ylvisaker, the visionary who first established polo in Wellington, passed away. This past week, the annual Ylvisaker Cup, named in his honor, carried more significance than usual.

His mark on South Florida and the world is truly remarkable. To honor polo legendary Ylvisaker, the American flag was lowered to half-mast on Sunday, Feb 7.
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Beacon Features: They are their brothers’ keepers

By Jocelyn Martinez
Contributing Writer

A private university with a fraternity? This is something Palm Beach Atlantic University was not expecting.

Thanks to a group of young men on campus, PBA can now say it now has a fraternity.

The fraternity, Nu Delta Nu, first tried out its wings at the end of last year, but because of lack of commitment and lots of paper work during finals week, the fraternity did not make it. However, this past semester, things changed.

The fraternity was born and made history as the first fraternity at PBA.

“This is an exciting time because NDN is an open book with a very bright future ahead of us,” said Clint Longenecker, member of NDN. “We are very young, having just started at the tail end of last semester but the future looks very promising. We have compiled a great group of guys and will be adding to that stellar cast throughout the semester. We’ll provide the campus and university community with a much needed shot in the arm.
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Beacon Features: Photo classes just around the corner

By Michael Noble
Contributing Writer

The Palm Beach Photographic Centre in downtown West Palm Beach offers classes for amateurs and professionals, taught by world-renowned photographers such as Lawrence Gartel, Dennis Reggie and David Kennerly.

The center moved to its new Clematis Street location last fall, but the company has been around for over 25 years, said Fatima NeJame, president and CEO. By using big-name photographers, the center seeks to draw in the public and aspiring photographers.

“You get a real sense of equality when professionals and amateurs alike are listening to the same speaker,” NeJame said. “It is an excellent learning and networking experience.”

Primarily, PBPC is a school for photographers. Memberships are available from $95 to $2,500. Each membership allows for admittance to workshops and community events that help photographers grow in skill and knowledge.

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