Thursday , July 28 2016
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About Travel and More

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Here’s a “hopeful” item that will affect many, but mostly those who travel U.S. 41E starting at the new widened road from 951 East to Greenway Road. When the FDOT widened that road they never installed any streetlights, or sidewalks, or pathways. The folks in that area, mainly those living in Reflection Lakes and Imperial Wilderness, brought their concerns to my office because of their fears that nothing can been seen in the darkness, and it gets very dark in the winter months. We all remember when the FDOT didn’t install streetlights in the section of ... Read More »

Summer News

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala My goodness, it’s awfully warm out there, but we have a beautiful paradise to enjoy. *Very soon we should start seeing the installation of landscaping along the 951 median connecting Mainsail Dr. to Fiddler’s Creek. No sooner will they finish that section than we again apply to the FDOT for another grant to continue the process until we finish the project all the way to U.S. 41 E. With the summer rains, the landscaping should take hold easily once the project starts. *You might have noticed that a few of our favorite restaurants are closing for ... Read More »

More Changes to Come

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala We have a remarkable towing company in this part of Collier County named Bald Eagle Towing. I’m sure you’ve seen their tow trucks around. Did you know that if you have a car break down or an accident where the police would have to call a tow truck, you can REQUEST the tow company of your choice?  I did just that and was so pleased. The very next day I was reading in the paper about a different towing company who was towing a car late at night when the Sheriff’s Office put on his lights ... Read More »

Paradise Reef Premier

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Has anyone noticed how much traffic there is out there? It’s as busy as during season! Sometimes we can’t even get out of the government parking lot! For the last few years the Governor has been working on growing jobs, jobs, jobs everywhere. Well, with jobs come people and cars and housing and more children. What IS the perfect world? Let’s face it – our unemployment rate is very low, so it looks like that is good for the people living here, but surely it must have also brought people who are new to the area ... Read More »

A Busy Start to Summer

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Probably most of us have heard about the stem cell procedure, but really don’t know what it is or how it’s done. Although not being really immersed in the subject, I’ve spoken to the owner of Arthrex, the largest company in Collier County, in Florida, and actually one of the largest in the USA (!), who has diligently been working on streamlining the procedure and equipment for the orthopedic surgeons in our community. Here’s what I understand so far. The surgeon takes stem cells from the bone marrow in your hip, and platelets from your blood, which ... Read More »

Attend Your Neighborhood Information Meetings

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala It’s interesting to read all the ads for Neighborhood Information Meetings (NIM) now that the winter residents have headed up north, and there are fewer people here to attend or to object. Hmmm – wonder if that is by design? It didn’t work recently, even though so many residents have gone back home. I went to a NIM that scheduled itself into a very small library meeting room, but people came out by the droves, filled the room to a packed standing room, then overflowed into another adjacent room, and then overflowed into the foyer of ... Read More »

U.S. Open Pickleball in Progress!

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Since the last column two weeks ago, I’ve heard from so many, many people about Tent City, and I thank you for that. It is much better to react to the wishes of the community rather than depend on our own thoughts. The outpouring of advice has been wonderful. All of the letters had the same response, but in different levels of concern. Actually, I didn’t receive one note or letter that said, “Yes, go forward with it.” A friend of mine and I went to see the gentleman, Joe Valentini at Helps Outreach, to view what ... Read More »

Good Things Coming Our Way

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala The U. S. Open Pickleball Championships are coming to town! This will be the first ever Pickleball U. S. Open and it will be held right here in town at the East Naples Community Center located on Thomasson Drive, which is an extension of Rattlesnake Hammock Road going south, next to Avalon Elementary School. The games begin on April 26th and will end on May 1st with the final championship games and grand prizes awarded at the end of the games. CBS Sports will cover the entire five-day event. Make plans to attend and enjoy. Food ... Read More »

Projects in the Works

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Sometimes I feel like I’m the queen of the median landscaping effort, so we have good news coming our way on this subject…lots of good news. First, the county applied for a Florida Highway Beautification Council Grant quite a while back to landscape another portion of Collier Boulevard/951 between Mainsail Drive and Fiddler’s Creek. It seemed like there were more hurdles to jump than ever, but our staff is persistent, and so am I. We finally got the news that the request has been approved and we can move forward with design, bid and construction. It ... Read More »

Warm Reception for New Businesses

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Now THIS is our beautiful winter weather. It took a long time to get here, and we won’t have as much time to enjoy it as we would have had it come on time, so we’ll have to just enjoy it all the more right now! *Were you at the grand opening of the new Stein Mart on 951/41 on Thursday, March 10th? What a warm and excited reception they received! I bet we surprised them with all with the people so eager for a new store to open! I only stayed a short time before getting ... Read More »

Thank You Community Heroes

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Sometimes heroes pop into our lives and we feel so thankful that they’ve arrived. I’ve had a few lately, and I want to thank them publicly. Kent and Marya Hedrick are two of those heroes, to whom I owe a world of thanks. And while I’m thanking people, Bill and Roseann Christ are right up there at the top of my list, but then again, I think they are at the top of everyone’s list of heroes. Not only did they shine their goodness on me, but they cook at the church, they volunteer in the community, ... Read More »

Coming to Town!

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala In case you were wondering, Stein Mart, located in the new Tamiami Crossing Shopping Center at US 41E and Collier Boulevard, is working diligently toward an opening date of March 10th. They will be the first and only store opening at that time. The others are already slowly working on their inside construction, but don’t plan on opening until later – probably sometime in May after season. Stein Mart is now hiring. The inside looks great already, as they begin the interior completion such as shelves, mirrors, offices, checkout, and finally, stock. At that rapid pace, most ... Read More »

Town Hall Meetings Coming Up

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Mark your calendars now for the great St. Paddy’s Day Parade, Sunday March 6th on Marco Island! Parade participants will meet at the NCH Healthcare Center across from the City of Marco Island Government Center at 11 AM. For questions, please email Steve Stefanides at sstefanides@comcast.net. It’s always loads of fun and lots of people line the streets from all over. It’s a great way to prepare for the Irish holiday, and no one has more fun than the Irish! *The Coastal Breeze News started out a few years ago and they chose to serve both sides ... Read More »

What’s New in January

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala What a new way to start a new year – with wind forces like we’ve never seen in January! AND with gasoline prices we haven’t seen in years…on Saturday we had $1.75 along the Collier Boulevard/951 corridor. One of the same gas stations about two miles away had prices at $1.85 on U.S. 41 E, and further on down the prices continued to climb. This is a good place to be when buying gasoline, that’s for sure. It will be interesting to see how the prices will run when the WaWa gas station is built at Price ... Read More »

Happy New Year!

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Here we are already in year 2016 and it’s hard to believe it took so little time to get here! My wish is that each and every person reading this column had a wonderful holiday season filled with joy, happiness and love. It’s been a bumpy year at times, but we all made it through to … a very warm December! I cannot remember when the full month of December was ever this warm, yet many of us are really suffering from sinus problems because of the weather, and my many Christmas cactus plants have struggled to ... Read More »

A Community Holiday Spirit

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala *The Christmas Island Style Parade was a huge success! Each and every float was outstanding! It would have been difficult to choose one over the other. The marching bands were just as good as those in the Macy’s Day Parade – no kidding! The parade watchers started setting up their food tables and folding chairs early in the day. Neighbors joined neighbors to watch from their driveway chairs and snack on the tempting foods. Children were squealing with delight as the parade slowly rolled down their street with wonderful entertainment. The parade watchers were as much fun ... Read More »

Marco’s Award Winning Museum and more

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Gasoline prices – oh how they vary! The other day I decided to check all the prices along the route I was taking. On Marco the price was a very nice $1.99 – so much better than a year ago. Traveling down SR 951 I came upon a price of $1.98, and then right beyond that was $1.97. Turning onto US 41E by Hitching Post the price was still in the same range – $1.99, but then in front of Naples Manor the price went up to $2.09, then by Rattlesnake Hammock Road it went back to ... Read More »

Time Flies, Give Thanks

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala Where has this year gone, and why did it travel by so quickly? When I was 12 years old it took a whole year for a year to go by. Now it seems like it’s gone in a few short months. I’m sure I just took my Christmas tree down, yet now I’m preparing to put it back up again. Each year my children and grandchildren come to grandma’s house for Thanksgiving dinner. After everyone has had lots of food, fun and conversation, they clean up the kitchen and then head for the garage where they take ... Read More »

Honor Flight Welcomed Home

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala The Marco Island VFW was again at the Honor Flight in full dress, and they looked marvelous! The event was held on Saturday, November 7, leaving the Naples Airport at 9 PM, and returning about 2 AM after a heartwarming experience welcoming our honored veterans back home. There were well over 1,000 people there from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts, to high schoolers, to veteran’s organizations, to the DAR, family and relatives, Nurse Corps, and many well-wishers just there to honor these veterans who have continued to serve amongst us in their civilian lives. Thanks especially go ... Read More »

Modern Marco Exhibit Opens

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala The Modern Marco Exhibit has opened at the Marco Island Museum. It is so much fun to look at everything, recall the past and enjoy the many things we recognize because we were already here. They did a great job, and the staff is so excited to see people coming to enjoy the progress. The next display is a year away, and is called “Pioneer Days on Marco Island.” Visiting the museum is one of those great things to do when you have company, or it rains, or it is too hot (or too cold in the ... Read More »