Daytona Beach News-Journal/Flagler News-Tribune: Leslie Babonis only moonlights as the pro bono mayor of Marineland, one of the state’s smallest towns. One of its five permanent residents, she’s a scientist, a post-doctoral research associate for the Whitney Lab for Marine Bioscience.

The bulk of Babonis’ day is spent studying starlet sea anemones and similar organisms. So when the municipality’s commission of three began discussing the possibility of a large 75th anniversary celebration for a town mostly known for its dolphin attraction, that seemed a little out of her depth.

But with some outside help, the free, three-day-long festival exceeded her grandest fathoms.

“It was so much more than I ever expected it to be,” she said.

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