Guest Commentary

Guest Commentary: Protect Our Tortoises – You Can Help


Marco Island offers a beautiful and diverse habitat that is home to many native species. Nearly everyone knows about the burrowing owls that live with us in our neighborhoods, but many may not be as familiar with our other burrowing animal – the gopher tortoise, a large, long-lived reptile. The life of a gopher tortoise revolves around a tunnel-like burrow ... Read More »

Classical Education vs. Progressive Education


By Jory Westberry If you’ve been following the campaign rhetoric during campaigning for the Collier County School Board, you may have heard the term “Classical Education” proposed by two candidates as the ideal education for the students in Collier County schools. But what is it and how does it compare to the education our students are receiving now? Classical education ... Read More »

Critical Wildlife Areas


By Charlette Roman State-designated Critical Wildlife Areas, or CWAs, established by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), are very important for the preservation of our local environment. These specified areas ensure that the most vulnerable wild creatures are protected for future generations. Because wildlife will concentrate in a CWA, we can protect large numbers by closing off a ... Read More »

Guest Commentary Guest Commentary on Dairy Consumption


By Larissa Bersh Writer Larissa Bersh is a high school student at Marco Island Academy and will begin her junior year this fall.  Even as a young person, it feels as if the world around me is constantly changing. Not a day goes by that doesn’t bring news of a scientific breakthrough or groundbreaking medical discovery that alters what we ... Read More »

Local News From the Nest

Submitted Photos. The young fledgling being fed in the nest.

By Linda J. Turner Director of Operations Marco Eagle Sanctuary Foundation This past February 21, the resident bald eagles, Paleo and Calusa, hatched an eaglet at the Marco Island Nature Preserve and Bird Sanctuary, formerly known as the Marco Eagle Sanctuary. In a little over three months, this healthy eaglet rapidly grew to the size of the adult female eagle. ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: Marco Island Property Owners Public Forum

Your Water, Your Ambulance and Your Insurance Marco Island Property Owners (MIPO) will conduct its last public forum for the season with two guest speakers on Thursday, April 21, 2016 at 3 PM in City Council Chambers located at 51 Bald Eagle Drive. Florida House Representative Kathleen Passidomo will discuss two issues of great importance to the health and safety ... Read More »



Q: Boaters or Manatees? A: How about the “Environment”?   I hear it all the time – “…do you want to keep boating, or save manatees?” It’s as if the two are thought of as mutually exclusive. Generally, the one asking the question is working on the premise that manatees are truly and desperately endangered, and are also wonderful for ... Read More »



The Board of Directors of Standing Watch has been of the opinion that the Manatee should have been removed from the Endangered Species list since the year 2000. As populations in all areas of Florida have steadily risen since such records have been kept, the species has expanded well beyond their purported historical range. As animals are now found up ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: Marco Islanders – Making Sense of the Republican Race

By John Arceri Vice President, Caxambas Republican Club As the primary race for the Republican candidate for President heats up and gets more complex, the members of the local Republican organization, the Caxambas Republican Club of Southwest Florida, tries to make sense out of the race by determining which of the present candidates have the characteristics that make a winning ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: What We Leave Behind…


By Hector Fernandez So there has been much ado lately about discussions, ideas, opinions and plans for some kind of facility, building, offices, veterans’ facility, etc. at Veterans Park. It seems that some of the speculation and rumors were laid to rest at this past week’s PRAC meeting where City Manager Roger Hernstadt presented some of those ideas. So as ... Read More »

Misunderstandings Regarding Veterans Community Park

Dr. Gerald Swiacki, 
Chairman Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee. SUBMITTED PHOTO

By Dr. Gerald Swiacki, Chairman Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee There has been a great deal of inaccurate and misleading information circulating, recently, regarding Veterans Community Park. As Chairman of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee (PRAC), I would like to correct any misunderstandings. Let me begin by reviewing some history regarding the property. The 6.85 acre property, formerly known ... Read More »


Roger Raymond at his desk. 
Raymond has been with MICMS since the beginning,
formulating its sports program. PHOTOS BY ROGER LALONDE

By Roger Lalonde Roger Raymond has stepped down as athletic director at the Marco Island Academy. Kelly Monnot, dean of students, and successful volleyball coach, takes over. I have known Roger Raymond since we met when the Marco Island Charter Middle School (MICMS) was getting off the ground some 17 years ago. His “aw shucks” straight ways caught me off ... Read More »

Guest Commentary


Mr. Harris, try using facts instead of misinformation! In his most recent LETTER TO THE EDITOR Bill Harris once again attempts to mislead the Marco Island Community with misinformation and irrelevant statements. To wit: He specifically challenges my comments that despite the contention of a small group of people at the July 20 Regular Council Meeting that while they demanded ... 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 ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY/OPINION: Thoughts on Comprehensive Immigration Reform


by Sheila McKlveen It’s been reported Silicon Valley interests are joining with strawberry growers and other agriculture corporations to lobby for “comprehensive immigration reform” because the country needs foreign workers to harvest crops and design software (San Francisco Chronicle 8/2/13). Most of the Catholic bishops tell their congregants they must welcome the stranger, contact their representatives to pass the Senate’s ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: Stop Expansion of Oil Drilling in South Florida


By Karen Dwyer Residents of Golden Gate Estates are deeply concerned about the effects of oil drilling on their neighborhood as well as on protected wildlife habitats and wetlands. The proposed drill site is only 1,000 feet from family homes and is adjacent to the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge and the Western Everglades. Background In May of 2013, Dan ... Read More »

Oil Drilling or Life: The Importance of Preserving Golden Gate Estates


By Roseann Lahey The Dan A. Hughes Company is waiting for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s decision as to whether or not they can have a permit to drill for oil and gas in the Golden Gate Estates area of Naples, Florida. The demand for these resources is always high, and our reliance on foreign countries is increasing. This ... Read More »

Guest Commentary: Will we ever have such Patriotism again?


By Ben A. Wolfe Recently while reading several articles in some old (very, very old) small town newspapers, my mind was bent on going back to earlier times. As I looked at pictures of servicemen and their families gathered for their final farewells before departing for some foreign soil, many of them never to return, my heart was touched again ... Read More »

To the Graduating Class of 2013


By Roy Eaton During the next month, over four million students will be graduating from various schools, colleges, and universities across our land. As you listen to your commencement speakers’ addresses, I’m sure some of you will be focused more on receiving your diploma and the summer freedom that awaits, than on the advice that will be given. I’m sure ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: So why is the USPS going broke?


By Ben A. Wolfe One very hot day I was sitting on my front step here on Marco Island. It was almost 12PM when the mail carrier stopped in front of my mailbox, shutting off the engine of his little vehicle because he had a box to deliver that was too large to put in our mailbox. After putting the ... Read More »