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Monthly Archives: December 2011

New Year rings in new office for Condee family

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Only a couple businesses have served the island continuously since 1969 and Condee Cooling and Electric is one of them. They’ve served Marco Island and surrounding areas for 42 years. Originally from Illinois, the late Don Condee, Sr., a licensed pilot, found Marco Island in the 1960’s while flying back and forth from Illinois to Florida with friend, Ed Husted. Ed worked for Deltona. In 1965 Don, Sr. purchased Marco property and a condo in Emerald Beach. At that time, Don, or Senior as the employees affectionately called him ran a business in Illinois which ... Read More »

Killing Lincoln: The shocking assassination that changed America forever

BOOK REMARKS Diane Bostick Author: Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. 2011. While reading this book I was entranced and when I finished, all I could say was, “Wow.” Back in the ‘50s when I was taking American History in Fort Myers High School, it was all I could do to stay awake. For one thing, there was no air-conditioning then and the class was right after I had eaten lunch. But to make things much worse I had the kind of teacher who felt she had covered all her bases if she had us learn ... Read More »

Security surveys help property owners

By Danielle Dodder “Perception is reality. If people don’t feel safe, then to them, it’s not safe.” Paul Keys is the Marco Island Police Department’s certified crime prevention officer. The department offers security surveys for your home or business, a service not loudly publicized but still in high demand, as Keys is working his way through a backlog. Keys will arrive at a home or business with camera in hand and walk the property owner through everything that catches his eye and photograph what he finds. The resulting report has visual notes for the property owner to reference. All reports ... Read More »


COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala The Marco Island Christmas Island Style Parade was just terrific! Almost everyone on the Island was outside in the beautiful weather greeting the parade participants and toasting their neighbors. There were 4 cars in my little section of the parade, and the people with me were flabbergasted at the community spirit displayed! There were lots of tailgating parties between neighbors and friends, and people were dressed for the holidays. It makes me so proud to be your commissioner and your friend because YOU are what community spirit is all about! Speaking of Christmas, let me ... Read More »

Toys for Tots left lasting impression on Lely JROTC

By Coastal Breeze News Staff  On December 17th, 69 cadets from LHS provided key support to the Marine Corps League’s Annual Toys for Tots distribution day at the former Devoe GMC dealership on Airport-Pulling Road. Cadets started their support before the sun came up and worked almost 12 continuous hours helping thousands of disadvantaged families receive close to 30,000 toys. Cadets served as “elves” and helped family members load toys into extra-large bags and carry those bags out to the parking areas. Cadets also helped load hundreds of bikes for deserving children. At the conclusion of the toy distribution, Mr. ... Read More »

Gingerbread houses galore

By Coastal Breeze News Staff  First grade students at Tommie Barfield Elementary put their architectural and engineering skills to the test with nothing but graham crackers, frosting and candy. The students, along with a little help from their parents, built a variety of sweet little houses and decorated them with an assortment of candies and pretzels. The kids are over the top with excitement at this time of year and it is a fun holiday activity for them just prior to their winter break. Teachers assisting with the construction process: Mrs. Diane Jerrett, Mrs. Mary Beth Schneller, Mrs. Adys McDuffie, ... Read More »

Chanukah celebration at JCMI

JCMI’s 3rd annual Marco Island Community Chanukah Celebration was held on Wednesday December 21, 2011. Chanukah, meaning “dedication” in Hebrew, refers to the joyous eight-day celebration during which Jews commemorate the victory of the Maccabees over the armies of Syria in 165 B.C.E. and the subsequent liberation and “re-dedication” of the Temple in Jerusalem. Our lives light up during Chanukah. Perhaps our joy at this season is because of the chanukiyah, (a special menorah for Chanukah) lights that we kindle, unique foods, latkes and jelly doughnuts; and special songs and games. We feel so happy during this time because we ... Read More »


An all time record number of entries: 1,722 Homes & 126 Business Properties. 2011 winners are:  • Home Decorating Winner: 1232 Fruitland Ave • Business Property Decorating Winner: 493 Tallwood St., Building “A” Condo Association. The Decorating Contest Final judging took place on December 16 by the entire committee and invited guest judges, Jenny Beuhrer, Bette McGilvray and Steve Josselyn. Plaques were presented to the 10 Home Contest Finalists. The Winner of the Business Contest received a plaque and a yard sign for display. The House Decorating winner received a Championship plaque, yard sign and $500.00. LCEC staff member, Tricia ... Read More »

Dapper Entrepreneur, elected to honorary Rotary membership

For as long as anyone in the Rotary Club can remember, Gerry Gerolamo has been by far the club’s best dressed member. A few years ago, for an interview, Gerry counted and found he had 55 suits plus 40 sport coats in addition to enough bow ties to never be seen in the same one twice – and for very good reason. At the zenith of his career, Gerry owned two clothing stores in Lynn, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston, and employed 32 people. How he accumulated so many bow ties is an accident of the fashion industry that will ... Read More »

Naples Free-Net offers low cost internet connectivity

Trying to decide if your home or small business needs a DSL line, dial-up, Wi-Fi, or bundled programs that combine telephone, cable television and Internet connections can be a daunting task. Naples Free-Net has been a low cost option for Collier County residents since 1995. For example, installing a 1.5M DSL line through Naples Free-Net costs $32.99 monthly, including all taxes and fees. Naples Free-Net charges users the same rate that they are charged by Network Tallahassee for DSL connections without taking a profit. Naples Free-Net members purchase a modem for a $75 one-time charge, compared to monthly modem rentals ... Read More »


By Justin Cox  Adult Softball  Winterberry Park and Tommie Barfield Ball Park host an adult softball league with teams that are sponsored by eight local establishments. The teams play every Thursday night at either 6:15 or 7:30 at one of the parks. The current teams are Cocomo’s, DaVinci’s, Joey’s Pizza, Nacho Mama’s, Islander Pool, Marco Island Brewery, NeNe Kitchen, and Kretch’s. It’s a great chance to watch competitive play and to come and root for your friends or favorite restaurants. Apparently, local rivalries between restaurants can be settled by hits and RBI’s; as well as, food sales and customer ... Read More »


By Monte Lazarus A friend of mine recently appeared clutching the latest technological marvel – the iPhone 4s that talks to you. He proudly demonstrated this newest wonder. “What is the weather forecast for today?” he queried. Virtually instantly the miniature lady we remember from our GPS days responded, “Turn left at Bald Eagle and go two miles to Old Marco”. It was brilliant! Imagine converting a tiny little person into an even tinier little person while retaining speech capability… not to mention the superior mental capacity. I gasped at the genius of this Thing, especially since I still ... Read More »


BEYOND THE COAST Tarik Ayasun We are coming to the end of another year in our lives. In a few days, it is going to be a new year; it will take at least a month before we get used to writing 2012 on our documents; we will all be a year older and hopefully a little wiser. I am a believer in the importance of how our knowledge of history determines our future. So, at the end of each year, I sit down and make a list of the important international events of the past year and save them ... Read More »

Call to contractors

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Jane Watt, Chairman of the Marco Island Academy, held a meeting at 2255 San Marco Road near the Estuary Condominiums, the future site of the school. Paul Meyer, assisting the school in procuring contractors and services, called on local contractors to offer their input for site work. The work is in advance of ten pre-manufactured buildings scheduled to be installed on the site. “Our preference is to work with local companies before we look outside Marco Island,” confirmed Jane Watt. The school had planned to begin construction on the site last year. However, plans changed ... Read More »

Beach Daisy – local gem at Marco Walk

By Marilyn Honahan One of Marco Island’s newest boutiques is getting a lot of attention from both visitors and local residents alike. Beach Daisy opened this past summer and has since won the favor of many Island shoppers. Owner Lee Ann Adams has had extensive experience in the ladies clothing field. She worked at Chico’s when they were only 50 stores strong and used to come to Marco to fill in when the former manager of the Marco store would go on vacation. She worked there for 6 years. She was then recruited by Fresh Produce Sportswear for whom she ... Read More »

Chanukah: light over darkness

By Carole Glassman  As the potpourri of faiths that compose our community enjoys the holiday season, members of the Jewish community celebrate the eight days of Chanukah. This year the eight-day Festival of Light began on Tuesday, December 20, the evening of the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev. Chanukah celebrates the triumph of light over darkness, purity over adulteration, and the spiritual over the material. If that sounds like a large order, trace it back to its origins in the Holy Land, more than 21 centuries ago when the Syrian Greeks known as the Seleucids tried to ... Read More »

Capri Christmas

By Coastal Breeze News Staff The Isles of Capri had a jam-packed Christmas season with events and decorating. The annual Christmas party began at 6 PM on December 16th at the community center with a pot luck meal and lots of conversation. It was a time to reconnect with all of those who were returning to the Isles. Ted Decker, president of Capri Community Inc, announced the names of the white elephant gift exchange and each person selected a gift. Capri boat parade was one of the best with 15 boats decorated stem to stern. With the new rules the ... Read More »

Parading the streets of Marco

By Coastal Breeze News Staff With great anticipation and excitement, Marco Island’s 24th Annual Christmas Island Style Street Parade was welcomed by cheering, shouting crowds. The parade is the pinnacle event after weeks of planned activities geared towards celebrating Christmas in proper island- style. According to Steve Stefanides, “I think we had more in attendance this year than ever before.” The weather certainly cooperated this year. Cars and trucks started lining up along the parade route early in the morning. While others hauled out chairs and ropes to stake out their prime viewing area. Not only were those walking the ... Read More »

A Christmas Carol

By Coastal Breeze News Staff The Marco Island Charter Middle School put on a musical rendition of A Christmas Carol directed by Karen Raymond, Music Director. Chorus students from all grades and levels sang in the production. Jacob Hartman gave a marvelous performance as the lead character, Ebenezer Scrooge. Other outstanding performances were given by Andrew Smith as Bob Cratchit and Steven Vale as the poor Tiny Tim. More great performers included Brandon Spina as Fezziwig, Emily Orgass as Mrs. Cratchit, Evan Meredith as Peter and Savannah Rose as Martha. The sobering ghosts were played by Miles Carlisle as the ... Read More »

Ring in the New Year

BUZZ FROM THE SWAMP Patricia Huff We’re saying good-bye to a lot of memories this past year: friends and long-time residents who have passed away and new babies born, school games and events, Smallwood Store forced closure and re-opening after six months, Margaret Webb’s survival after her encounter with a gator, among other happenings in the Glades. We hope that 2012 will bring more neighborly love and continued peace in the Swamp. As our winter residents return to the Everglades, several upcoming events will be of interest. The Everglades Community Church on the Circle will hold a Night Watch ... Read More »