Daredevil Diane Rowden kicks off campaign by jumping Brooksville quarry on motorcycle


Frank Fencil | frank.fencil@springhillcourier.com

BROOKSVILLE, Florida — County Commissioner Diane Rowden kicked off her re-election campaign with fireworks this morning by jumping a motorcycle more than 200 yards over the Brooksville rock quarry.

Rowden said it has become increasingly difficult to engage young voters as the Hernando County’s older constituents die off at thousands a day, so the extreme stunt seemed an appropriate way to drive the coveted 18-24 demographic off the couch and to the polls.

“The air I got on that was almost as mad as my opponent must be to suggest there is something wrong with the current millage rate in our home district,” Rowden said just seconds after finishing the stunt without a helmet or net. “I like my jumps to be extreme, unlike my views on zoning ordinances, which are much more practical and conducive to fostering local business growth.”

Hernando County Board of Commissioners chairman Wayne Dukes said he once saw a similar stunt as a child when his father took him to see famous stuntman Evel Knievel jump a row of cars but that Rowden’s leap was twice as impressive.

“It was sick,” Dukes said. “Just sick. If there’s a single person who lives west of Citrus Way and north of Fort Dade Avenue, Powell Road and 50 who doesn’t vote for her after this, I’ll eat my hat.”

Frank Fencil

Frank Fencil is an award-winning journalist with more than two decades' experience. He has uncovered government corruption, toppled dirty police forces and covered two foreign wars as an international correspondent. He chose to return to his native Spring Hill in hopes of giving his hometown the quality watchdog journalism it deserves.

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