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The Best Grilled Pompano You’ll Ever Have

A good day’s catch of pompano. Photos by Capt. Pete Rapps

FOLLOW THE FISH Capt. Pete Rapps CaptainRapps@Outlook.com Fishing along our local beaches, you will have opportunity to catch some quality Pompano, and once you have your catch, you’ll want to make the most of it by turning it into something delicious. There are few feelings as satisfying as catching dinner, and we have a recipe that will allow you to make some of the best grilled pompano you’ve ever had! This easy recipe starts out with simple ingredients, and those you can typically find at your local grocery store. The ingredients are: 2 tablespoons of sugar 2 tablespoons of fresh lime ... Read More »

A Passion For Pickleball

Photo by Wayne Clark
The Zing Zang Championship Court.

By Wayne Clark   During my career as a tennis coach, I have been to several United States Tennis Association (USTA) -sanctioned tournaments. I have also been to many professional tennis tournaments. I have attended the professional events as a spectator, as a coach, as a director of ball boys and ball girls, and as a vendor providing racquet-stringing services for the players. Professional tennis tournament events are very different than regular USTA-sanctioned events. It’s the big leagues! In addition to tennis tournaments, I have attended a couple of Unites States of America Pickleball Association (USAPA) sanctioned pickleball tournaments, but ... Read More »

Boating Safety Saves Lives

Submitted Photos

Submitted  Marco Island Sail and Power Squadron wants to remind islanders to always follow safe boating practices, including always wearing life jackets and becoming educated on water safety. Always Wear Your Life Jacket Accidents can happen without warning. There’s rarely time to reach stowed life jackets. It is estimated that approximately 86% of recreational boaters that drowned were not wearing their life jackets. Overall, approximately 400 lives could have been saved if boaters had worn their life jackets. That’s why the United States Power Squadrons® recommend that boaters always wear a properly fitting U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket when ... Read More »

Responsibilities of Player and Coach

The world’s top ranked golfer, Jason Day, with his coach. Submitted Photos

Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org May 4th was National Golf Instruction Day on the Golf Channel. As much as the Golf Channel communicates incorrect information about the golf swing, and despite employee commentators who regularly bash tour player’s golf coaches, I really appreciate the network honoring those who grow golf through instruction. The Golf Channel is a huge factor in the growth of the game, and I appreciate the network educating golfers that instruction is important. However, some golfers have had really bad experiences during and after golf lessons. Guarantee some are my former students. Some golfers have had a ... Read More »

Crazy Pants Golf Tournament – KW Cares

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By Maureen Chodaba The sunshine was dazzling on the morning of May 7 at Hammock Bay Golf & Country Club, but the spirit of enthusiasm was even brighter as 68 golfers participated in the first annual Keller Williams Realty/The Speakeasy “Crazy Pants” Golf Tournament. Participants were encouraged to wear their most colorful, crazy golf outfits for this fundraising event, and they did not disappoint. During the day, players enjoyed a four-person shotgun scramble and 18 holes of golf, followed by a delicious lunch at The Speakeasy. Organized by Sandi Sims-Ramage and Donna Cottrell, both of Keller Williams Realty, the tournament ... Read More »

Challenges Ahead for MIA Football

C.J. Noel (right) bears down on Kyle Ginther in an intense tackling drill. Photos by Roger LaLonde

By Roger LaLonde  On the Marco Island Academy Football team’s website you first see its program mission. There are a lot of superlatives, much of them about student athletes. In many ways the student athletes have already proven to be worthy over the past five years. One section includes sustaining a level of success “on the field of play.” New coach Damon Coiro has his hands full. The team is without eight starters who played major roles. Running backs, quarterback, receivers and linemen whose jobs have to be filled. Starters back are Tyler Gresham, Kyle Ginther, Bon Dees, John Roche, ... Read More »

MIA Boys Basketball Scores in Academics

Photo by Roger LaLonde
MIA’s Patrick Michel comes down with rebound in the Rays victory over Canterbury.

By Roger LaLonde  The Marco Island Academy (MIA) boys basketball team scored on the court and in the classroom. In the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) winter sports report, MIA scored second in Class 3A. Westminster Academy of Fort Lauderdale was first and First Baptist of Naples third. Not only were they in the top three for their class, they were the top three for all classes in the state. On a 4.0 grade point scale, Westminster recorded a 3.723, MIA a 3.655 and First Baptist, 3.604. The next highest score came from Class 2A, as Covenant Christian of ... Read More »

Lely’s New Football Coach Kicks Off Season

Jesus Godinez tosses a pass.

By Roger LaLonde  It is audition time for Lely football players. New coach Maurice Belser said, “Everyone is being evaluated, players and coaches.” Belser takes over the reigns from Culmer St. Jean, who was fired after three seasons with a 14-19 mark. In 2014 St. Jean was area Football Coach of the Year when his Trojans went to the playoffs. Belser knows personal playing success as a starting lineman for Alabama’s 1992 national championship team. He is Lely’s sixth head coach in 10 years. Belser has coached at 12 schools in 18 seasons. Belser said he has 80 players on ... Read More »

Positive Future for Lely Track

Photos By Patricia Poling
Lely boys track team celebrate after winning the Class 2A Region 3 title.

By Roger LaLonde  There were just two Lely medalists at the FHSAA Class 2A State Track & Field Championships over the weekend, but the boys and girls teams did shine on their way to the title competition. The Lely girls won the Class 2A-District 10 competition and the boys came back the next weekend to win the Class 2A-Region 3 title. The Lely girls competed in five events, the boys in eight at the state Class 2A championships on May 6 and 7. “There were a lot of good possibilities and the kids did a good job of competing,” coach ... Read More »

Hart Goes Out in Style

Photo by Patricia Poling
High fives all around after MICMS girls placed third in the county’s Middle Schools Track & Field Championships.

By Roger LaLonde  When it comes to Marco Island Charter Middle School track this season, it had to have Hart. Ryenn Hart. She easily won both the 1,600 and 3,200 meter runs to lead the Lady Eagles to a third place finish in the Collier County Middle Schools Track & Field Championships on April 30 at Palmetto Ridge High School. The team missed tying for second by just one point. The girls’ team winner was Gulfview with 82 points, North Naples, 66 and Marco, 64. Hart’s first run, the 3,200, was a breeze. Hart took the lead early then maintained ... Read More »

Winged Foot Candidates

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By Roger LaLonde Patrick Michel Defines the Student Athlete Patrick Michel says he transferred from Lely to Marco Island Academy (MIA) his sophomore year to “reshape myself.” He became one of its top students in sports and academics. For his efforts he is the school’s candidate for the 27th annual Winged Foot Scholar-Athlete Award. He is one of 13 candidates, representing each high school in Collier County. The winner will be announced at the annual dinner on May 26 at The Naples Grande Resort. “As a freshman at Lely I was starting to digress. I had lost my focus that ... Read More »

Family Fun at YMCA Healthy Kids Day & Duck Derby

At last year’s event, Marco Island’s Fire-Rescue Department sends the plastic ducks on their way.

By Don Manley The Greater Marco Family YMCA will again present a wide-ranging assortment of fun activities, and healthy living information for the entire family at its annual Healthy Kids Day and Duck Derby. Set for April 30 at the organization’s Sand Hill Street campus, the dual events are held back to back, starting with Healthy Kids Day, which runs from 8 AM to 12:30 PM, when the 21st Annual Duck Derby fundraiser begins. Healthy Kids Day is a national YMCA initiative that mixes fun activities with education and information designed to promote healthy lifestyle choices among youth. The Duck ... Read More »

Fishing the 10,000 Islands in May

Jeff with a nice black drum caught on a Captain Rapps Charter.

FOLLOW THE FISH Capt. Pete Rapps CaptainRapps@Outlook.com Spring has sprung, and with it, it brings one of the best months for fishing: May. Because of the mild and dry weather patterns and light wind, May is the perfect month to enjoy our local waters. The water is warming up into the 80s, attracting the fish to set out on their annual migration from the back country waters into the near Gulf flats and island areas. In May the new moon falls on the 7th and full moon on the 22nd. May is one of the months that we will not have ... Read More »

Serve It Up

Roger Federer prepares to throw in an upward motion to the ball. Submitted Photos

COACH WAYNE’S CORNER Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com Arguably, the most important shot in the sports of tennis and pickleball is the serve. In tennis, holding serve is an important factor in staying on a winning course and maintaining a positive attitude. This is even more of a factor in pickleball, because I can only score points when I’m serving and I only get one serve! The basic premise of a winning strategy in both games is very simple, be the last person to hit the ball over the net and inside the lines and you win the point. With that said, if we ... Read More »

Golf Nutrition

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GOLF TIPS Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Here is a story we have all heard a million times. A golfer is going along nicely in his round, hitting good shots, having a good time, and then all of the sudden in the middle of the back nine the shots start going awry. It keeps getting worse and worse until he comes into the 19th hole after his round, depressed about his finish, and mentally drained from the experience. The usual statement is “I got tired out there.” Even though physical conditioning might be a problem, it usually is not the biggest reason ... Read More »

Poling, Bell Star Lely Wins District Championships

Lely coaches holding the boys and girls championship trophies. From left are Gage Wheeler, Krystal Righter, head coach Mark McGarity and Abby Zenz.

By Roger LaLonde  Rosie Poling and Mallory Bell kicked it into high gear in leading the Lely girls to the Class 2A-District 12 championship at Lely on April 22. The Lely boys used consistent placement in nearly every event to win the boys title. Both teams won easily with the girls tallying 222 points and the boys 219. The Dunbar girls came in second with 171 points and the Dunbar boys placed second with 151. Lely coach Mark McGarity was pleased with the teams’ overall efforts. “We have a bunch of young athletes who have been working hard to do ... Read More »

MIA Track Team Shows Heart

Mike Weyrauch adjusts his sunglasses during the coaches meeting. With him (from left): FBA’s Ryan Mitchell and Cassie Barone and Seacrest coach Nick Pohl.

By Roger LaLonde  An eight-member track and field team has little chance in a district meet, but the Marco Island Academy showed heart on April 21. The team managed nine points at the Class 1A District 8 meet as host First Baptist Academy (FBA) boys and girls won titles. In just its second season and coach Mike Weyrauch in his first, the team gave an all-out effort. “The team was impressive. Every single girl came to every practice and got better. The boys and girls all improved and their times dropped dramatically,” Weyrauch said. Sophomore Olivia Watt had the best ... Read More »

MICMS Track Advances Competitors

Photos by Roger LaLonde and Patricia Poling
And they’re off! MICMS girls vie for position in the 1,600-meter run.

By Roger LaLonde  The Marco Island Charter Middle School (MICMS) girls track and field team stayed focused as they swarmed the Lely High School track on April 23 at the South Collier Middle Schools qualifying round. The top two finishers in each event advanced to the middle school championships on April 30 at Naples High School. Those finishing in third and fourth positions had to wait out the other two county qualifying events to see if they had better marks to advance. It was all about qualifying individually and by relay teams. Should the scores have counted toward a team, ... Read More »

Successful Return of Tour de Marco

Photo by Maureen Chodaba

By Samantha Husted and Coastal Breeze News Staff   April 24th marked the Greater Marco Family YMCA’s 6th Annual Tour de Marco. Bike riders of all levels and ages came out to the family-friendly event in order to support the YMCA’s scholarship fund, and to get a good workout. The Tour de Marco returned to the island this year after a one-year hiatus. Approximately 120 bicyclists took part in this year’s Tour de Marco, about twenty less than the 2014 event, according to event organizer Anthony DeLucia. Taking place later in the season may have contributed to fewer riders. Although ... Read More »

Raul ?Rodriguez MIA’s First Athlete to Compete at State Championship

Raul Rodriguez smashes a forehand during practice for his state match.
Photo by Roger LaLonde

By Roger LaLonde When Raul Rodriguez picked up a tennis racket at age seven he was thinking about his cousins Alejandro and Carlos Perez who played in college, and for a short time on tour. Rodriguez was a standout on the Marco Island Charter Middle School tennis team as they won championships each year he was on the team. He chose Marco Island Academy over Lely to be with friends. He played on its first team four year ago. The team won one match as growing pains clashed with experience. He and Peter Servente, who graduated last year, were the ... Read More »