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Vatican exhibit coming to Fort Lauderdale Aug. 23

By Compiled from Times wires
Published August 10, 2003

FORT LAUDERDALE - The city's Museum of Art has won a major coup - it will host an unparalleled exhibit of treasures from the Vatican later this month.

The collection, called "Saint Peter and the Vatican: The Legacy of the Pope," opens Aug. 23 for a three-month run at the museum. Promoters expect about 200,000 visitors to pay as much as $19 per ticket to see the collection.

About 350 pieces will make their way to South Florida, including the oldest known representation of Jesus and the papal tiara of Pope Pius IX, representatives said.

The collection will tour four cities over 18 months. It started in Houston, and after the stint in Fort Lauderdale, it will go to Cincinnati and then San Diego.

Clear Channel Exhibitions, part of a media group better known for its radio stations, is producing the exhibit.

Tourists find body on beach; police investigating

PENSACOLA BEACH - Police are investigating possible foul play in the death of a man whose body was wrapped in a chain when it washed up from the Gulf of Mexico on a barrier island beach.

Tourists saw the body Friday at the Fort Pickens Area of the Gulf Islands National Seashore on Santa Rosa Island.

Authorities found no identification, but the man may have been between 20 and 40 years old, Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokeswoman Lisa Lagergren said. An autopsy was pending Saturday.

Santa Rosa Island has been the scene of 22 accidental drowning deaths over the past three years.

10-year-old faces charge in fire at gymnasium

VERNON - A 10-year-old boy has been charged with setting a fire that caused between $50,000 and $75,000 in damage to the gymnasium at a high school.

Firefighters quickly contained the blaze Wednesday night at Vernon High School. Vernon is about 30 miles north of Panama City.

The boy was arrested Friday, taken to Washington County's juvenile detention center and then released to his parents, authorities said. He was charged with criminal mischief, a third-degree felony. His name was not disclosed.

Welch and sheriff's investigators decided against charging him with arson, a first-degree felony, after questioning the boy.

"He admitted to starting a fire, but I don't think he meant to do as much damage as he did," Welch said.

[Last modified August 10, 2003, 02:02:50]

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