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Goodland Life

Drop Anchor – The Residents Take Over

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GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net As earlier reported, the Drop Anchor Trailer Park today is a gathering of brightly painted and colorful trailers and mobile homes. Mostly empty in the summer, the park fairly explodes with activity in the winter. There is a constant to and fro of residents socializing and visiting with each other, catching up on the past year and enjoying the present one. They genuinely seem to like each other here. They will jump at any excuse to socialize, gathering for monthly potluck suppers (and occasional happy hours) in their sunny recreation center. This year there ... Read More »

Drop Anchor Trailer Park – The Early Years

Downtown Goodland, 1964. 
Ritschard apartment complex with main entrance underneath. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Drop Anchor is a collection of sixty-three gaily painted and well maintained 1950s, 60s and 70s travel trailers, and single wide manufactured homes crammed onto less than two acres of land in the heart of Goodland. Today it is a quiet, well-run, close-knit community, revered by its residents and neighbors. Goodland kind of grew up around it. The first residents were winter visitors, lured here by word of mouth, warm weather, fabulous fishing (always the fishing), and Woodall’s Campground Directory. Always known as Drop Anchor, the park was developed as a trailer park, and ... Read More »

Rookie Agents Corral Car Thieves. Save Careers.

New Agents Class #9, Dec. 1964 - Gwinn is front 4th from right.

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net On November 30, 1964, at the age of 26, I reported to the Justice Department in Washington to be sworn in as an FBI Special Agent. After three months of training, we were all given our first office assignments. The protocol then was to serve for a year in your first office; then be sent to your second office for three or four years. Sometime after that, you would land permanently where the Bureau thought they needed you. Our class. New Agents Class 9, waited eagerly for our assignments. They varied in desirability from ... Read More »

The Noes Arrive in Goodland

Noe and Pettus houses, street side – 1965

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net After the war, Walker Noe used his G.I. Bill to get a B.A. in English Literature from Center College in Danville, Kentucky (1948). Walker claims he never bought a book while there, but paid close attention and took good notes in class. He and his wife were housed in prefab housing for vets and were paid $110 per month. “That was more than enough to get by on,” Walker said. After college Walker taught high school, managed large farm operations, and finally moved back to Stanford where he opened a real estate and insurance ... Read More »

SALUTE TO VETERANS Walker Noe Goes to War

A l05 mm howitzer, France (1944)

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Walker Noe has wintered in Goodland since 1985. He has lived in a cottage at 519 Goodland Dr. W., which he purchased from his father who had the place moved over from Caxambas in the 1960’s. Walker was born at Stanford, Kentucky on May 18, 1923, the first of five siblings. Walker’s father owned a hardware store and sold Nash automobiles as a sideline. In 1932, due to the Depression, Walker’s dad lost his businesses. The family was forced to move to a farm in nearby Hubbell. “We moved from a house with all ... Read More »

Goodland’s Orphaned Access Road – Part Two

Goodland Road at Angler Drive, ½ hour before high tide. Tide overtaking road from right.

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Rich Pappy, a long time resident and Goodland Civic Association (GCA) board member and officer, had previously told me that after the second Interlocal Agreement in 2002, the Village of Goodland was riven by strife and bad feelings. “Many residents felt betrayed by the GCA, for allowing City of Marco Island (CMI] to take over jurisdiction of Goodland Road,” Pappy said, “We didn’t like the GCA leadership and started a rival organization, the Goodland Preservation Coalition. We siphoned off a lot of GCA members.” “The animosity between the two groups became toxic,” Pappy said, ... Read More »

Goodland’s Orphaned Access Road – Part One

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GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net There is only one way in and one way out of Goodland. It is aptly named Goodland Road and designated CR 92A by Collier County. On good days, one need only dodge potholes, and endure a washboard drive over the crumbling roadway. On bad days, the waters of the Gulf of Mexico on one side, and the Marco River on the other, cover substantial portions of the road creating shifting one-lane travel and traffic backups. A refrain that I hear over and over is “Why doesn’t the County do something about this?” The short ... Read More »

Little Bar’s Merrill Fest Raises $20K

Merrill’s friends use five different modes of transportation to the Little Bar.  PHOTOS BY BARRY GWINN

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Niki Bauer and her brother, Ray Bozicnik, have been the owners and operators of the Little Bar in Goodland for over 25 years. In general, Ray looks after the food end of the business, while Niki oversees the front of the house. Among Niki’s responsibilities is the booking of musicians, for the entertainment of the Little Bar patrons. Over the years she has developed a core of performers, which consistently delight her customers with some of the best blues music in Southwest Florida. I can personally attest to this. A 34-year-old blond haired, blue-eyed ... Read More »

Calusa Island Marina – Goodland’s Good Neighbor

At the Calusa Island Marina, a 25,000 pound forklift approaches launching area. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net I have lived across the street from the Calusa Island Marina (the “Marina”) for the past 10 years. Despite the rumbling of forklifts and the beeping of back-up signals, I am content to be hemmed in by a navigable waterway on one side, and a boatyard on the other. Boats and boating have always been high on my list since I had my own wooden rowboat at age 12. I began my seafaring days in 1950. In 1950, the Marina was just a part of a largely undeveloped area on the southeastern end of ... Read More »

A Goodland Favorite Son Succeeds at MIA – Part One

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GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Tyler Gresham is going into his junior year at Marco Island Academy. It will be tough to top his sophomore year there. Last year, Tyler, as fullback, was the leading rusher on the MIA football team. He also played middle linebacker on defense. During the winter and spring, he starred on the basketball and track teams. In the classroom, Tyler finished the year with a weighted 3.65 GPA. Tyler doesn’t load up with creampuff courses, either. His schedule included a number of honors and AICE courses. AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education) is written ... Read More »

Seafaring Norwegian Settles in Goodland

Svein, still in command, at Goodland. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net After spending much of his life on the high seas, Svein Sleipnes (pronounced “Sven Slipeness”) has chosen a quiet canal-front residence in Goodland to ultimately spend his retirement. Svein and his wife Katherine, along with sons Hans, 15, and Christian, 12, became my neighbors in 2011. Like many on the east coast, they were attracted by the uncrowded west coast, and particularly by the leisurely laid-back lifestyle of Goodland. Being on the water with great fishing next door didn’t hurt. Svein Sleipnes was born in 1957, in the picturesque town of Volda on the ... Read More »

Sailors Love it Here!

The Kathryn. PHOTOS BY JIM FREEMAN

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Goodland has long been known as a fishing community, both commercial and private. Being located in the Ten Thousand Islands, with quick and direct access to the gulf, makes it a natural for fishermen. With our many canals, almost every waterfront residence here has a fishing boat sitting on a lift out back. We didn’t all come here to fish, however. Goodland is also ideally situated for sailors, especially for trips to the Keys, Dry Tortugas, the Caribbean, or even the Bahamas. There are a few sailboats on lifts here. Larger sailboats can be ... Read More »

How We Got to Goodland

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GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net Everyone has a story about how they ended up in Goodland. Many, like Nancy and I had never heard of Goodland or knew where it was. Our story begins back in 1993. That was the year that my company sprung for a retirement seminar at the Peabody Hotel in Orlando. The three day seminar was for the benefit of those of us in the Philadelphia Office who were facing retirement. When I discovered that no attendance was being taken, we started touring Florida instead. When the seminar was over, we decided to stay for ... Read More »

Goodland Returns to Normal

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GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net In the July 10, 2015 issue of the Coastal Breeze, I reported the theft and vandalism of four golf carts and an attempted burglary at Stan’s. An arrest has been made in the Stan’s burglary which has no connection with the other incidents during that week. That suspect has never lived or worked in Goodland. Since my prior article, I have learned of two additional burglaries, during the same time period, both of which seem to be related to the golf cart thefts. I have reviewed police reports and newspaper articles. I have interviewed ... Read More »

Crime Wave Grips Goodland

Wandel Short trying to salvage tires.

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net On June 24th, at about 3:00am, three golf carts were stolen from the yards and driveways of sleeping Goodland residents. Two of these were dumped in a canal. The third was recovered damaged but operable. On June 25th at about 1:00am, someone attempted to pry open the cash register at Stan’s Restaurant. The Collier County Sheriff’s Office has open investigations on the above. They have developed a person of interest in the golf cart thefts. Not everyone was sleeping when the golf carts were stolen. Cindy and John Singerling, 745 Palm Pt. Dr., returned ... Read More »

Goodland Civic Association Ends Season on High Note

Greg Bello and Richard Welch grilling Olde Marco Lodge hamburgers. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn bgwinn@comcast.net The GCA was incorporated on May 2, 1978. Its by-laws call for a meeting, open to the public, to be held every third Tuesday of each month, from October through April. It meets in the Goodland Community Center, at 417 Mango Ave. After April, we get to leave town or do some serious recreating. For as long as I have been on the board, we have faithfully adhered to this schedule. In addition, we have a potluck supper before each meeting, featuring specialties and delicacies of our members. These guys are good. Most of ... Read More »

Goodland Goes Automated; AED Volunteers Ready to Assist

Digitized map of Goodland with marked AED locations. PHOTOS BY BARRY GWINN

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn barry@coastalbreezenews.com The Goodland Civic Association (GCA) really cares about the well-being of our residents. The GCA actually does something about it. The following is one such story. There are others, but none involve life and death like this one. Theresa Morgan is a personal friend of mine. She also sits on the board of the Goodland Civic Association and puts in countless hours of community service here. In her spare time she runs a thriving CPA business, which among other things, does my taxes. She has spearheaded the effort to coordinate with Collier County, and ... Read More »

Goodland Gets Its Own Flag

Sherri at her desk.

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn barry@coastalbreezenews.com On November 18, 2015, the Goodland Civic Association (GCA) Board of Directors authorized the design and manufacture of an “official” Goodland flag. The board was willing to make a substantial investment and was betting heavily that a large number of Goodlanders would buy a flag or two for display either here, or at their northern residence, or both. This is exactly what happened and the orders keep coming in. To date, 66 flags have been ordered and about 51 have been sold. I have one in front of my house, and the condos that ... Read More »

The Goodland Scholarship Fund Goodland’s Gift to High School Graduates

Front entrance - Little Bar parking lot, shortly before visitors arrive. SUBMITTED photos

Goodland Life By Barry Gwinn barry@coastalbreezenews.com Most visitors to Goodland don’t exactly know what to make of us. Most would agree with the aphorism that Goodland is “a drinking village, with a fishing problem.” We have our share of that, I guess. It may be time for a new adage. Something like “Goodland takes care of its own.” Since the mid 1980’s, the Goodland Scholarship Fund has been raising money and dispensing scholarships to Goodland kids who want more than a high school education. It was founded by Betty Bruno as Village Productions. From all that I have heard, Bruno ... Read More »

Street with a Split Personality

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By Barry Gwinn barry@coastalbreezenews.com Goodland sits on a horseshoe shaped peninsula -although some insist it is an island- which juts out eastward from the southeast corner of Marco Island. It seems to be separated and isolated from the City of Marco Island by a couple of miles of trackless mangrove forests. Consequently, Goodland streets generally lead to dead ends or to intersections with other streets which lead to dead ends. This holds down traffic volume and speed. We like it that way. You can’t get to somewhere else by going through Goodland. A notable exception to this serenity is Goodland ... Read More »