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Marco Island Appoints Acting Chief of Police

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Marco Island City Manager, Roger Hernstadt announced today the appointment of Al Schettino to the position of Acting Chief of Police. Schettino has been a law enforcement professional for 37 years and has been a member of the Marco Island Police Department since 2005. Schettino’s mission is to further develop the Marco Island Police Department into a dynamic, progressive and community-oriented organization. Schettino offered his thanks, “I would like to thank Roger Hernstadt, the Marco Island City Council and our community leaders for providing me with this opportunity. I look forward to working alongside my fellow officers to foster a ... Read More »

Camp Able 2014: Going Beyond Special Needs

Campers kayak and paddle board with Capri Fish House on Isles of Capri. PHOTOS BY ALEXANDRA DIAZ

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Schaeffer McHenry, Ellie Bennett, Gage Wheeler and Mary Evelyn Webb could not be more different. McHenry is a junior at the Air force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO; Webb is a Mississippi native who attends the University of Mississippi. Bennett and Wheeler both attend Lely High School. Bennett is a bubbly, talkative junior, and Wheeler is a senior, quiet and a young man of few words. The one thing these four have in common: A special connection with people who have special needs. McHenry’s 23-year-old cousin, Sara, has Down Syndrome. Webb’s mother suffers from Huntington’s ... Read More »

From Sea to Shining Sea

The audience watched as the first strokes of color were placed in the piece, promising what looks to become a vibrant finished product.

By Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com The first time I had the pleasure of meeting local artist, Malenda Trick, was nearly two months ago. The Marco Island Foundation for the Arts (MIFA) had chosen to honor her as their first annual artist of the year. I noticed right away how open, friendly and down-to-earth she was. She instantly put me at ease, a treat I see far less often than one would think. After accepting her award, she spoke of her two previous Veterans Day projects in which she painted 35 individual portraits of veterans in Southwest Florida and then in Sarasota. ... Read More »

CBN Wins Again!

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Once again, Coastal Breeze News has been recognized by its statewide industry peers for its in-depth reporting, historical storytelling, website design and all-round general excellence. CBN brought home five awards from the 2013 Better Weekly Newspaper Contest, which is hosted by the Florida Press Association. The contest is open to all Florida Press Association monthly, semi-monthly, weekly, semi-weekly and tri-weekly member newspaper. The awards ceremony was held during FPA’s 2014 Annual Convention at The Biltmore Hotel in Miami/Coral Gables, July 10-11. CBN’s five awards are solid examples of the combined team effort — publisher, editorial ... Read More »

Mackle Park Referendum: Island Parks & Rec Foundation Rallies Support

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By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Greg West is no stranger to the Mackle Park Community Center referendum, which is set for a vote in the Aug. 26 election. Until recently, West served as the chairman of the city of Marco Island’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee (PRAC), and was one of the masterminds behind the committee’s marketing plan for the new community center. Now, as the president of the Island Parks & Recreation Foundation Inc., West is pulling out all of the stops for one final push to raise the community’s awareness and favor for a new Mackle Park Community ... Read More »

MIWC Donates Bench

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By Coastal Breeze News Staff The Marco Island Women’s Club (MIWC) donated a park bench to the Veterans Memorial. Members of the club gathered recently at a dedication of the bench. Lee Rubenstein, head of the Veterans Memorial fundraising committee, explained to the women present how a nine-foot-tall bronze American Bald Eagle will sit atop of the Freedom Fountain. Rubenstein is past commander of the local VFW and present commander of the local American Legion branch. 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 ... Read More »

Follow Your Dreams — To Africa (Part II)

Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. PHOTOS BY CAROL GLASSMAN

By Carol Glassman We were greeted at the Victoria Falls Hotel by staff bearing mint-scented wet cloths and cold juice drinks. From the hotel’s garden, one sees mist rising from the Falls in the distance, while everything from baboons to wild boars and even elephants roam the grounds. We were asked to keep doors locked at all times, as baboons are smart enough to open doors and trash rooms looking for food. The hotel is a wonderful example of old Colonial charm, a remnant of earlier days. It is beautifully maintained with manicured gardens and immaculate rooms. A huge bed, ... Read More »

Creating Mythical, Magical Creatures

Messy hands are a work of art too.

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com The mind of a child is an amazingly creative place. Put the minds of nine children together, and you embark on a journey to a truly special place where Pegasus soar through the sky and three-headed creatures rule the land. That is what art instructors Mary Kane, Linda Kropp and Robert Bransterator learned during the recent “Mythical Magical Creatures” art camp sponsored by the city of Marco Island and the Marco Island Center for the Arts. The three adults — all teach adult art classes as well at the Center — guided campers through a ... Read More »

Our Veterans: From Sea to Shining Sea

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By Coastal Breeze News Staff In May, Malenda Trick made a big announcement about a new Veterans’ Day project during the Marco Island Foundation for the Arts annual Scholarship Awards Luncheon, and now, that project will become a reality. Beginning Tuesday, July 15, Trick will be painting historical images of our nation’s valiant soldiers at war on an 18-foot-long, double-sided memorial canvas wall at the Marco Island Historical Museum. She will paint images of our Florida soldiers at war on one side and our national efforts on the other. The memorial will depict Trick’s impression of images captured during wartime, ... Read More »

Skin Wellness Physicians Now Open

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Submitted Daniel I. Wasserman, MD, board certified in dermatology with a dual fellowship in Mohs micrographic surgery and laser and cosmetic medicine, is opening a new dermatology practice under the name of Skin Wellness Physicians. Services include general dermatology, skin cancer detection and treatment, Mohs micrographic surgery, laser and light medicine and cosmetic rejuvenation. Wasserman recently moved from a group dermatology practice where he provided medical care for more than three years to the Naples and Marco Island communities. His decision to begin a new venture is motivated by a firm belief in delivering high quality individualized health care and ... Read More »

Highlights from New Association Laws

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CONDO LAW  By Bob Murrell  Woodward, Pires & Lombardo, P.A. On June 13, Gov. Rick Scott signed into law three bills that will impact community associations in Florida; those were Senate Bill 440, House Bill 807 and House Bill 7037. All of them became effective on July 1. The law that impacts community associations the most is House Bill 807. The following are some of the highlights from this law. The first of the highlights deals with abandoned condominium units and an association’s right to protect the common elements and other units of the condominium. Under the new law, in ... Read More »

A Call to Artists

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Submitted The Marco Island Foundation for the Arts and the Marco Island Historical Museum are working together to bring a unique art show to Marco Island called “Painting SW Florida History.” Artists from Collier and Lee counties are invited to participate in this exciting event, which will be held at the Marco Island History Museum, Jan. 6–March 21, 2015. Southwest Florida was one of the last frontiers to be settled in our country. The stories of those early pioneers who came in the 1800s and early 1900s have been told through several books written locally and many old photographs. These ... Read More »

Bistro Soleil Recognized by BCC

Bistro Soleil and Petit Soleil Waste Reduction Award. SUBMITTED PHOTO

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Bistro Soleil at The Olde Marco Inn and Petit Soleil recently were recognized by the Board of Collier County Commissioners for receiving a WRAP Award — Waste Reduction Awards Program — from the county’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Department. Owner Lisa Meurgue received a proclamation from District 1 Commissioner Donna Fiala, who congratulated her for her restaurants’ continued efforts to promote waste reduction, reuse and recycling and for sustaining the usable life of the Collier County Landfill. The WRAP Awards recognizes newly created and/or exceptional recycling efforts by businesses located in unincorporated Collier County ... Read More »

S4TL

Gage Wheeler, Christy Thorstenson, Diana Vickers and Jessica Simon speak to Rotary Club members. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Five young students entering into their senior year of high school were chosen by the Sunrise Rotary Club and the Noontime Rotary Club to attend a weeklong Students 4 Tomorrow’s Leaders (S4TL) program. The program was held at Florida Southern College in Lakeland. Students from all over Central and South Florida converged on the campus, where past S4TL attendees greeted them as they arrived and divided them into groups. The students were housed on campus and had all meals there during the weeklong camp. Team building exercises and motivational speakers are presented throughout the week ... Read More »

A Spamtacular Night

With attention to some cool details, the second place winner, Spam Idle Hour, stood out. PHOTOS BY MELINDA GRAY

By Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com In the weeks leading up to Saturday, June 28, my Facebook news-feed confirmed that time had run out. While my local friends had been diligently shopping and preparing, I had procrastinated. The nasty rumors claimed Bealls had completely sold out of pajamas. I chalk my ill-preparedness up to the fact that, until now, it never occurred to me to wear my night-shirt on a night out, but I’m always up for a challenge. I had been looking forward to this party of legendary status since February, and after all my anticipation, the Little Bar’s 22nd Annual ... Read More »

Marco Community Lights Up Sky

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By Noelle H. Lowery  noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Marco Island did it again! The city government, community businesses, civic groups and residents came together to raise $44,000 for this year’s fireworks spectacular, and what an incredible show it was. Each year, the city of Marco Island contributes half of the expense to fund the fireworks. The Marco Island Area Chamber of Commerce’s Sandi Riedemann, along with Joey Oliveria of Joey’s Pizza and Pasta House, team up to raise the remaining half from local businesses and residents. The fireworks display is the grand finale of MICA’s Fourth of July on Residents’ Beach event — ... Read More »

Marco’s Real Estate Round-Up

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By Coastal Breeze News Staff Real estate is the largest single industry in this area. It is the topic of conversation for hundreds of our neighbors, friends and family. Whether it be industry news, agent information, technology updates or new designations and awards, those involved in real estate want to know. Below is a compilation of real estate news items received by Coastal Breeze News: Marco Island Specialist Certification Jon Busch, Kathy Hunt, and Susan LaGrotta of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Realty have received the new Marco Island Specialist Certification from the Marco Island Area Association of Realtors (MIAAOR). They ... Read More »

City to Revamp Farmers’ Market Formula

Bella Maria was among  many food venders who participated in the Marco Island Farmers Market last season. PHOTO BY JAMIE BOZICNIK

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com What started out as a budget discussion about raising the vendor rates for the Farmers’ Market from $775 per booth to $950 turned into a debate about changing the overall vendor composition of the market, even limiting and excluding certain types of vendors, such as arts and crafts, jewelry, clothing, prepared foods and open-air food concessions. At the heart of the discourse during a recent special meeting of City Council were the size of the market and the reported rising concern from local restaurants about the market’s “food court,” where a number of restaurants from ... Read More »

Warm Hearts and Willing Hands: San Marco Youth Serve the Poor in Tampa and Belize Youth in Tampa-service and smiles

The group visited Mayan ruins. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

By Stephanie Shiller San Marco Church Youth Group, under the direction of Kim Adamson (DRE), sent two groups of young people on mission trips this summer with Catholic Heart Work Camps. The goal of these missions is to “share the love of Christ as we serve the neglected, brokenhearted and the marginalized in any way needed. Equally, to inspire participants to live as disciples of Christ through serving others as a way of life.”   Tampa This summer marks the third year of participation for the San Marco Youth Group in the Tampa mission trip. This group gave its all ... Read More »

Litha Berger to Run for City Council

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By Noelle H. Lowery Litha Berger has announced her candidacy for the Marco Island City Council. Elections will be held Nov. 4. In a letter sent to local media on Tuesday, July 8, Berger wrote: “The opportunity has been presented to me to serve on the Marco Island City Council. I am overwhelmed by the support and faith placed in me by residents, and I look forward to the challenges and opportunities to work with the City Council members, the city manager and the Marco Island city staff.” Born and raised in the suburbs of Philadelphia, Berger is a product ... Read More »