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Home » Author Archives: Mint Design Co. (page 110)

Author Archives: Mint Design Co.

Expectations for Florida’s housing sector in 2014

By Coastal Breeze News Staff News from economists at the Florida Realtors 2014 Real Estate and Economic Summit in Orlando indicates that growth is expected to continue but at a slower rate than we experienced in 2013, according Florida Realtors Chief Economist John Tuccillo. “The real estate market is going to grow, and we’ll probably see about a 10 percent increase in residential sales,” Tuccillo said. Home values will rise at roughly five percent a year, which is in line with historical trends. However, in the last 18 months, home values have gone up about 12 percent.” Average sale prices ... Read More »

Kiwanis brings cheer to Manatee Elementary students

The joy flowed from these 3rd-grade girls from Ms. Martinelli’s class.

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com It was scene right out of the North Pole. On a recent chilly morning at Manatee Elementary School, Christmas carols poured out of a media center decked out in traditional red, green and gold. Candy canes and cookies sat at the ready, as children lined up — some grinning ear-to-ear others looking just a little apprehensive. After all, they were about the have a one-on-one conference with Santa and Mrs. Claus, who sat in rocking chairs surrounded by their elves and bags of toys, balls, dolls, stuffed animals, games and art supplies. All of this ... Read More »

Veterans Park Battles Fire Ants

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Few insects make their presence known like fire ants. A person may not feel them crawling up his or her leg, but the telltale painful burning sting certainly cannot be mistaken. This is a familiar sensation for some who have visited Marco Island’s Veterans Park recently. Whether for the annual Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration, Movie Night in the Park or the Farmer’s Market, some people have had a number of stinger-to-skin encounters with the pesky little critters. According to Marco Island Public Works Director Tim Pinter, whose department is in charge of dispatching the ants, ... Read More »

LCEC line project to continue in 2014

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com On Dec. 9, some Marco Island residents were left in the dark after an aged distribution power line failed. The failure caused stress to a nearby pole which broke. The line went down, leaving a live electrical wire on the ground. The power went out for about 2,200 Lee County Electric Cooperative customers. This incident is one example of why LCEC has been working since the first quarter of 2013 to replace and rebuild the overhead distribution line — wires, poles and associated hardware — along San Marco Road. According to Karen Ryan, an LCEC ... Read More »

Coffee with the Councilor

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Bill Harris is a concerned citizen of Marco Island. He attends almost every City Council meeting, and tries to keep track of anything that may interest his fellow Marco residents. He also keeps a log of promises made by those running for and/or presently serving on the City Council. “One such promise that was made by the majority of those last elected to the council, was transparency in government, and Town Hall meetings where the citizenry can ask questions and get answers,” explains Harris. To date, though, this promise has gone unfulfilled. That’s why Harris ... Read More »

Building Paradise: Q&A with Herb Savage

Herb Savage sits in his office where he keeps memorabilia, amazing photographs and architectural plans. PHOTO BY NATALIE STROM

By Natalie Strom natalie@coastalbreezenews.com Many Marco Island residents know Herb Savage. The man has lived here since 1979, but his legacy on Marco Island supersedes that date. As the official architect to the Mackle Brothers, Savage helped create the vision that is now Marco Island. Approaching his 95th birthday on January 6, Coastal Breeze News asked Savage to sit down and share some of his memories of building an island, thoughts on how Marco has grown over the years and how it feels to be surprised by a birthday party thrown in his honor at the Rose History Auditorium at ... Read More »

Florida for the Holidays

St. Augustine has a variety of holiday events scheduled at the holidays.

SPEAKING OF TRAVEL Vickie Kelber vickieonmarco@comcast.net Since moving to Florida 15 years ago, we find ourselves increasingly spending the holidays in the Sunshine State. It’s not that we don’t like traveling at the holidays; we do. It’s the weather. We spent one Christmas in the Rockies. It snowed every day, and for three days, it was so bad that we couldn’t leave the condo. New York City is my favorite place at the holidays. Three years ago, we had a great trip there. We had a wonderful time seeing all the lights and decorations, checking out the displays in the ... Read More »

The Spotted Sea Trout

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FOLLOW THE FISH Capt. Pete Rapps CaptainRapps@gmail.com The spotted sea trout (Cynoscion nebulosus), also called speckled trout, specs, trout or spotted weakfish, is a common shallow water fish found in our area of the Ten Thousand Islands. They are closely related to the northern weakfish (Cynoscion regalis). Even though most of these fish are caught on shallow grassy flats, spotted sea trout reside in virtually any inshore waters from the outside flats to far up our coastal saltwater rivers where they often move to for shelter during the colder winter months. Contrary to its name, the spotted sea trout is ... Read More »

Giving back to wildlife, our way of life

Friends of the Fakahatchee Tram Tours. SUBMITTED photo

PROTECTING & PRESERVING Nancy Richie NRichie@cityofmarcoisland.com As the rest of the country is shoveling snow, commuting dangerously on icy roadways and bundling up in scarves and coats, we are walking the sunny Marco Island crescent beach in flip-flops or even barefoot, gift shopping in shorts and t-shirts and asking for an iced peppermint latte to cool off. What a wonderful time of year! Most of us, if not all of us, live and visit here for the beauty and wildlife life that is just out our backdoors. From boating, fishing, beachcombing, tennis, golf to just our easy way of living ... Read More »

A Goldsmith’s Tales of Christmas past

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ALL THAT GLITTERS Richard Alan harborgoldsmith@comcast.net While working yet another long day and burning many evenings worth of midnight oil in my workshop with my 21-year-old son, Andrew, I tried to ignore hearing his complaints about working late. I came to the realization that this was to be my 44th Christmas season in this crazy business. If he only knew what I had to endure when I was his age. Forty-four Christmas seasons as a bench jeweler! Even Santa’s head elf would have been impressed with the volume of work I would push out in those days and in a ... Read More »

How to engage this season

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BUSINESS BASICS Camden Smith DREAMFly Marketing Anyone can speak to you, but not everyone can make you want to buy. Become the business person who makes every client feel special, encouraging them to invest in the company by purchasing your goods and services. Become the best sales person possible with five quick steps. The first step to engage customers is to greet them with a friendly tone within three to five seconds of walking through your business’s doors. So often in retail, customers may be ignored due to staff helping others. Assign a greeter for the door to ensure every ... Read More »

What a Weekend!

It’s Stan’s! Go there at night and get a glow stick in your buzzard punch. I’m all for it.

GOODLAND LIFE Natalie Strom natalie@coastalbreezenews.com Yes! What a weekend! It’s always nice to take a time out from the hustle and bustle of working life and actually spend some regular time in Goodland. No work, no volunteering, just a bit of a good time with friends and local business owners. On Friday night we went down to Stan’s. I usually go on Sunday like everyone else, but we wanted to try something different, and it was worth it. Owner Steve Gober and his sons were there, working away as usual. But Steve made the time to sit and talk with us. ... Read More »

Nurturing Confidence

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ARtful Life Tara O’Neill taraogallery@marcocable.com It’s not very often I write a follow-up to a previously published column, but I did get some interesting communications on my last Artful Life column entitled, “Confidence, the Good Kind.” So, I would like to revisit the topic of nurturing confidence in folks young and old, and including ourselves. The most interesting call I received on the subject came from a semi-retired school teacher from New Hampshire. Here’s what she had to share: “Ask a classroom of first- and second-graders who in the room can sing, and 95 to 100 percent of those students will ... Read More »

Upland Adventures

White sand banks of the Blackwater River, a result of quartz  erosion from the Appalachian Mountains. PHOTO BY BOB MCCONVILLE

Stepping Stones Bob McConville I’m always telling my family and friends that the two best months of the year in Florida are November and April. So, when I woke up on November 13 and it was 30 degrees outside with a windchill of 24 degrees, I thought, “What!!! In Florida?? Mid November!?” You bet. Along with my wife Cathy (also a Master Naturalist and a full-time nurse at Physician Regional’s Marco Island Clinic), I took a trip to Florida’s panhandle to explore a few upland habitats. We experienced that cruel weather while staying in the Destin area. When we stepped out ... Read More »

For a Mixed Bag, Choose Shrimp

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LADY ANGLERS Captain Mary A. Fink islandgirlscharters.com Very few people can deny that shrimp are a tasty treat, and nearly all salt water fish concur. In fact, local species like sheepshead and black drum can be caught only on shrimp or other crustaceans. It is my belief that shrimp provide enticing bait offerings, but this is especially true during the winter months when water temperatures are cooler making it easier to keep the shrimp alive for extended periods, as shrimp are delicate crustaceans that tend to perish quickly. Additionally, finding and catching baitfish is more challenging during cooler winter months when ... Read More »

What’s lurking in your Garden

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PLANT TALK Mike Malloy mikemalloy@naplesbutterfly.com Are there dangerous plants lurking in your garden? That pretty flower or leaf, or even the colorful bark you’ve been admiring, may cause redness, itching, blisters or even death! Because many tropical plants are toxic, those of us in South Florida have to be knowledgeable about selecting safe plants for our gardens. And, if children and/or pets frequent your garden, then you need to be extra vigilant of what’s growing out there. I’m going to first dispel the age-old assumption that the Poinsettia plant is poisonous. It’s not. It was proven in a well-known university ... Read More »

St. Mark’s Unveils Etched Art for Advent

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By Natalie Strom natalie@coastalbreezenews.com The Artists in Residence at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church have done it again. Over 20 members within the congregation have created myriad mediums of artwork since 2008 – all representing the life of Jesus Christ. It’s fifth project celebrates the current season of Advent – the coming of Christ – the reason we celebrate Christmas. The group’s fifth project, entitled “Incarnation Windows,” is an incredible sight to see. Not only does it show the growth of artistic talent among the AIR group, but it represents the coming of Christ in spectacular fashion – through the medium ... Read More »

Preparing for common retirement surprises

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Ask The CFP® Pract itioner Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com Let our advance worrying become advance thinking and planning.” Winston Churchill Question: I am approaching retirement. Beyond the obvious evaluation of my expenses and income sources, what should I consider? Answer: Congratulations on your upcoming retirement and bravo for analyzing your cash flow. You’ve addressed the first step in this significant transition by making sure that long-term investments are on track to meet your target income needs. Planning for and anticipating the unexpected is wise. Unless you’re a fan of unwelcome surprises, it is sensible to identify financial vulnerability. The significance and likelihood ... Read More »

To be mindful, or not to be mindful?

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Body, Mind And Spirit Dianne Saywell yogadi77@aol.com Anyone who has ever delved into yoga and discovered its amazing benefits will certainly relate to the following sentence my husband texted me the day after I taught him a yoga class instead of practicing on his own, “Doing mindful yoga is a lot harder than hurry-up-and-get-it-over-with yoga.” I was happy to learn he discovered the difference. I am unsure if he was happy to know that now or not. “Knowledge is power,” I told someone one day; and he responded, “Yes, but ignorance is bliss.” Or is it? Any activity or undertaking ... Read More »

Act Like a Kid Again

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FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Crystal@PinkIslandFitness.com Are you stuck? Stuck in a workout rut or stuck behind a desk at work, or even stuck at the same weight that you keep trying to get off? Why not break out of the box and try something different? Watch little kids play; they are exercising without even knowing it. Why? Because they are having fun. Remember when you were a small child? I’ll bet some of your fondest memories are playing tag, hide-and-seek or simply running around the playground. Instead of working out indoors, take advantage of the cooler weather and take your ... Read More »