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Author Archives: Mint Design Co.

Youth See Police and Fire-Rescue Service Up Close

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By Val Simon Each year, the Marco Island Police Department works closely with the Marco Island Fire-Rescue Department to present a Police/Fire Academy through the city of Marco Island Parks and Recreation Department. The weeklong camp was headed up by MIPD Officer Al Schettino and Firefighter/Paramedic Chris Bowden. The academy — designed for students in the sixth through eighth grades — gives a hands-on look at the variety of training and skills each of these professions require. It’s an ideal camp for children interested in law enforcement, firefighting or emergency services. They cover everything these first responders do on a ... Read More »

Shoot the bull, chew the fat

By Wade Keller Speaking to the Marco Island council last Monday (June 16) was somewhat goofy. After being on Marco Island almost 20 years I’ve had interesting hobbies from “acting” at Marco Players, Toastmasters, Rotary, Friends of Library on to promoting two clubs, CHESS and Points…CounterPoints. In addition on work side have published personal memoirs along with wife Sue. We’ve done about 40 books. Of those here are a few who lived on Marco at some point: “Tell Me a Story, Grandpa” by Bill Rose, “An Ordinary Man in Extraordinary Times” by Tom Owens, “In the Shadow of Satan” and ... Read More »

Field of Prey

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com By John Sandford, G.P. Putnam 2014, 392 pages, Genre: Mystery “There’s nothing to match curling up with a good book when there’s a repair job to be done around the house.” – Joe Ryan   The 24th book in John Sandford’s Prey series proves the author is only getting better at his craft. I was engrossed in this story from page one. Although Field of Prey is a mystery, the reader knows from the beginning who the killers are. The mystery involves how the police track them down. The story opens with the kidnapping of ... Read More »

AAA Lot Mowing Cited for Repeat Violations

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By Carol Glassman Donald Liston, a tractor operator for AAA Lot Mowing owned by Bernard Wegman, ran up a very expensive tab for his lunch break May 12. Liston decided to have his lunch “with a better view” and “possibly seek another client,” but chose the wrong location. 1929 Indian Hill Street is a privately-owned lot that for approximately 15 years, according to city staff, has been deemed unmowable. In addition, the lot has been posted by Wegman himself, as a result of a previous conviction, as a protected gopher tortoise habitat. In December 2012, Wegman’s company was found guilty ... Read More »

D-Day to Disgusting day…

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On June 6, 1944, more than 160,000 Allied troops landed along a 50-mile stretch of heavily-fortified French coastline to fight Nazi Germany on the beaches of Normandy, France. My father-in-law was amongst these men who accepted his duty to his country without hesitation, without question and with deep commitment to the United States of America, his country. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower called the operation a crusade in which, “We will accept nothing less than full victory.” More than 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft supported the D-Day invasion, and by day’s end, the Allies gained a foot-hold in Continental Europe. More ... Read More »

Happy ‘100’ Gretchen Hawes!

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Gretchen Hawes was born on June 4, 1914, in White Water, WI, and on June 4, 2014, she celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by friends in her Goodland home. It was a day filled with hugs, life stories, laughter, Chinese food and birthday cake. To say Hawes has lived through some amazing times and has seen some changes in the world is a grand understatement. When she was born, women were five years away from getting the right to vote. Europe was on the brink of World War I. Woodrow Wilson was president, and Mother’s ... Read More »

MIPD: ‘Take It and Lock It’

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com A weeklong crime spree currently is under investigation by the Marco Island Police Department. Between May 29 and June 5, a rash of residential and vehicle burglaries, as well as two vehicle thefts occurred at various locations near the south end of the island. According to Assistant Chief of Police Dave Baer, the majority of the incidents happened over a 72-hour period, and MIPD is working with the Naples Police Department, Collier County Sheriff’s Office and the Region Six Fusion Center to solve these crimes and prevent future ones. “The key to preventing these types ... Read More »

A Celebration of Success

Faculty, staff and members of the class of 2014 prepare for the MIA’s first-ever graduation ceremony, which was held at the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort.

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Family, faculty, staff and school board members joined together Friday, May 30, to salute and celebrate the first-ever graduating class of the Marco Island Academy. The ceremony was held in the Capri Ballroom at the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort. Among the local dignitaries in attendance were MIA Founder and Chairwoman Jane Watt, former MIA principal George Andreozzi, current Principal Melissa Scott and Marco Island Marriott General Manager Rick Medwedeff. The ceremony marked the end of a week filled with nervous excitement and anxious anticipation for the 20 students who made up MIA’s class of ... Read More »

‘The 4th Letter of Ponce de Leon’

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com What if the great Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon tried to set up a colony along the shores of Southwest Florida? What if he wrote a letter to the king of Spain about the mysteries he found on the gulf coast shores but the letter was lost in the sands of time? What if the letter reappeared 500 years later, found on a beach by a curious little girl and her father? What if finding this letter turned everything historically known about Ponce de Leon and his expeditions upside down? These are the questions ... Read More »

Goodwill and Mutual of Omaha Bank Join Forces

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Submitted Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida, Inc. and Mutual of Omaha Bank have joined forces to provide entrepreneurs from low and moderate income backgrounds the opportunity to develop business skills and receive funding to become more independent and successful. Through Goodwill’s MicroEnterprise Institute, more than 215 entrepreneurs have received business training and many have successfully started their own business. MicroEnterprise sessions typically meet for six weeks and cover an array of topics including developing a business plan, feasibility planning and cash flow.  Representatives from Mutual of Omaha Bank and other partners often provide the instruction for the classes. In addition ... Read More »

MIFRD Speaks to MCC

Shown left to right: Firefighter-paramedic Dustin Beatty, MCC  Commodore Joan Kenney and Marco Island Fire Rescue Department Chief Mike Murphy.

Submitted Marco Island Fire-Rescue Department Chief Mike Murphy and firefighter-paramedic Dustin Beatty recently spoke to the Marco Cruise Club members regarding safety and emergencies at sea. They detailed “MERT” — the Marine Emergency Response Team — and the new fireboat 50. The rescue boat is 34’3” long, weighs 11,800 pounds and is driven by twin jet drive diesels capable of a speed of 45 miles per hour. It has a flat bottom and can run in water only 12 inches deep. Having a solid stern platform, rescue victims can be easily lifted from the water on to the boat and ... Read More »

Manatee Middle School Hurricanes ‘ROAR’

Karina Miranda and Seraphanime Garcia paired up with a presentation  on manatees and Florida panthers. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

By Nancy Richie At Manatee Middle School, the teachers and sixth-grade students didn’t slow down just because school was winding down for the summer. For eight weeks, they worked hard, researching their own Southwest Florida backyards. This hands-on, end-of-the-school-year research assignment is part of the Collier County Public School (CCPS) Pre-Laureate writing program. CCPS’s most capable students have the opportunity to pursue an AP Laureate diploma, the most demanding CCPS diploma available. This Laureate Program continues to grow with 80 Laureate graduates from five high schools this past year, compared with just three at one school when the program began ... Read More »

The Long Trip Home

One last walk along our private Lake Erie beach.

GOODLAND LIFE Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com The mission: a seemingly impossible road trip with the ultimate goal of packing up the last of my worldly possessions. I’ve got to gather what’s left in Ohio and bring it all back home to Goodland. I hear the “Mission Impossible” theme song in my head every time I think about the gravity of the situation, but it’s time to say goodbye to what was and start laying some permanent roots. I will admit, in the weeks leading up to this mission I wasn’t looking forward to seeing Ohio. The daunting 24-hour drive promised to ... Read More »

You Must Build It Before They Come

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To Your Health Scott Lowe CEO, Physicians Regional-Collier Blvd For anyone traveling north on Collier Boulevard from Marco to I-75 — or northwest from Port of the Islands toward downtown Naples, one fact is abundantly clear: East Naples is experiencing a major growth spurt. This renewed development has already provided brand new options for dining out such as Chili’s just south of I-75 on Collier or the new Outback Steak House at US-41 and Collier. Why? New developments and new homes are popping up everywhere. I have heard Collier County District 1 Commissioner Donna Fiala refer to our region as “The ... Read More »

Keeping Our Beach Beautiful

This is just one example of the trash removed from the beautiful sandy beach.

By Nancy Richie A beautiful morning unfolded for the last the beach clean-up, Sunday, May 18. Low humidity, mild temperatures, light breezes and blue skies prevailed. Paradise perfection — what we expect on Marco Island! More than 50 people of all ages met at the South Beach boardwalk access to help clean up the beach. The large group included beach committee members, Marco Island Civic Association (MICA) members, Chamber of Commerce representatives, Publix employees, regular beach goers, residents who couldn’t resist the beach on this beautiful morning and visiting families. It was apparent the wonderful weather and the beauty of ... Read More »

EcoTour Provider Training Series Back at Rookery Bay

Rookery Bay Reserve naturalist Randy McCormick explains the role of mangroves in southwest Florida’s environment during while touring the Reserve. PHOTO COURTESY OF ROOKERY BAY RESERVE

Submitted With approximately 97 percent of Southwest Florida’s ocean-based economy coming from tourism and recreation, ecotour professionals serve as ambassadors of local natural areas. These ecotour professionals often rely on their knowledge of natural history to provide clients a memorable experience. In order to meet the growing educational needs of ecotour professionals, Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, in partnership with Florida Sea Grant, is offering a series of field and classroom-based programs this summer. Back by popular demand, the Ecotour Provider Series promotes sustainable tourism practices by providing guides, naturalists and tour operators with information, tips and tools to ... Read More »

The Eagle Has Landed

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Submitted The eagle has landed and can be found at its temporary perch outside the city of Marco Island’s Community Room, located at 51 Bald Eagle Drive, behind City Hall. Standing 9-feet tall, the majestic 800-pound statue of an American Bald Eagle stands sentry there awaiting a move to its eventual home atop the Freedom Fountain that will grace the Veterans’ Memorial at Marco Island’s Veterans’ Community Park. The Freedom Fountain will be built at the Memorial’s entrance, joining the Flag Plaza where the American, Marco Island, state of Florida and POW/MIA flags proudly wave above an inscribed brick-paver plaza. ... Read More »

Fiddler’s Offers New Villas

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Fiddler’s Creek announces that Stock Signature Homes is offering a diverse selection of single-family residences at three distinctive villages within the luxury, master-planned community. Stock is currently building in the villages of Isla del Sol, Mahogany Bend and Majorca. The builder’s homes are renowned for the rich architectural details of their front elevations, lending them a unique air of distinction. Inside each residence, soaring ceilings produce a spaciousness that maximizes the living areas, while the finest appointments create a visual feast for the eyes. Located just off Collier Boulevard between Naples and Marco Island, Fiddler’s Creek is an award-winning community. For membership details ... Read More »

ECity Parade on June 28!

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Historic Everglades City is always first – the first Collier County seat and now the first in the area to celebrate Independence Day. The annual family-fun festival to commemorate America’s founding will be on Saturday, June 28, this year. The Opening Ceremony is at 10 a.m. on the steps of City Hall. That is followed at 10:30 a.m. by the Patriotic Parade, the theme of which this year is “Celebrating Our Heritage”. There are prizes for the best floats which may be anything from golf carts to swamp buggies. The fun continues in McLeod Park when booths open at 11:00 ... Read More »

Junior Achievement Recognizes IBERIABANK

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IBERIABANK was recently recognized by Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida, Inc. for the third year in a row for teaching greatest number of classroom volunteer hours of any company in Southwest Florida. During the 2013-14 school year, 23 bankers from IBERIABANK taught 30 classes in 11 different Southwest Florida schools. The Junior Achievement curriculum is based on financial literacy, business, economics, entrepreneurship and free enterprise. It is estimated than nearly 300 volunteer hours were donated through classroom instruction and lesson preparation by IBERIABANK associates. In addition to IBERIABANK’s overall volunteerism, Junior Achievement named Pete D’Alessandro as their “Rookie Volunteer of ... Read More »