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Ask the CFP

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ASK THE CFP® PRACTITIONER Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “All men by nature desire knowledge.” – Aristotle 5/29 is National College Savings Day Question: I hear a lot about 529 Plans but I’m not really sure what they are. Could you explain what makes them special? Answer: May 29th is more than the day before Memorial Day or the day when the Indy 500 is held, 5/29 is National College Savings Day. The term “529 Plan” refers to Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code that deals with specialized college savings accounts. These plans may provide tax benefits to the contributor, owner, custodian and ... Read More »

Fowlers Hit Football Trails to N.C.

Former MIA football coach Greg Fowler making a point to his defensive line.

By Roger LaLonde Greg Fowler and son Andrew will be showing their talents at 1AA North Moore High School in Robbins, North Carolina. Greg Fowler left on May 19 to become the school’s new offensive coordinator. He certainly will know the quarterback, son Andrew. The rest of Fowler’s family will join them after school is out. Andrew transferred to North Moore on May 16 to take part in spring football practices. School enrollment is 630. Greg Fowler resigned as football coach at Marco Island Academy (MIA) following his second football season. Son Andrew led the area in passing yardage for ... Read More »

Letter to the Editor

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Larry Honig Running for Re-election Announcement I’m running for re-election on a positive platform to bring back a sense of community on Marco Island through a less intrusive, more respectful government. Here’s what I want to accomplish: 1. Get back local control of our community. We need fewer government regulations. We should reduce our use of consultants and lawyers who don’t understand our community – there are plenty of good people right here in Collier County that we can use. We can streamline government services – for example, I’d like to see faster review and approval of permits. 2. Create ... Read More »

Baking Babka with Estie

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By Samantha Husted The babka is a Jewish pastry that originated in Eastern Europe. It’s chewy and flaky on the outside, yet gooey and sugary on the inside – not unlike coffee cake, though its texture is more similar to that of bread. And while this Slavic sweet is certainly no beginner’s loaf, don’t be discouraged. All you need is some patience, a little bit of bravery, a trustworthy dough mixer and about six hours, and you’ll be good to go. Luckily I had Marco Island resident Estie Karpman, a seasoned baker, to guide me through the process. As a ... Read More »

The House of Horrors – Part VI Aha! Is That a Tunnel I See Before Me?

A lovely new aqua glass and white tile backsplash sets off the quartzite counters. Photos by Carol Glassman

By Carol Glassman The day after the new kitchen cabinets arrived was Friday, March 18 and we all know how much work is usually accomplished at the end of a week: almost as if the Lord declared a day of rest in order to get ready for a few days of more rest. I was up and ready to admit workers at an early hour, and as usual sat around for three more hours until they actually arrived. I must admit I was a little dubious when two rather slight fellows, we’ll call them Joe and Moe because they looked ... Read More »

You Can’t Take It With You

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MIND, BODY And Spirit Laurie Kasperbauer  lkasperbauer@gmail.com “In the end, only kindness matters.”  – Jewel  I have a close friend who lives in Iowa. Her name is Mary, and before my husband and I moved to Marco Island, Mary and I were next-door neighbors for 27 years. That’s almost three decades of vigorous waves from the driveway, impromptu potluck dinners, borrowed cups of sugar, and shared Sunday brunches. We raised a combined seven children; we claimed a total of five dogs, and we buried four parents during our time as neighbors. We’ve shared tearful challenges and bladder-bursting laughter. Together, Mary ... Read More »

Gentle Giant Release

Photos by Samantha Husted
Following her full recovery from brevetoxicosis, this manatee is ready to be released.

By Samantha Husted sam@coastalbreezenews.com On April 7th, Rookery Bay in congruence with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Tampa Lowry Park Zoo released a manatee on Shell Island Road in Naples. The manatee in question was a 1,000-pound female who was rescued back in January after falling critically ill due to the effects of red tide, or harmful algae bloom. While red tide is commonplace in much of Florida and the Gulf of Mexico, its impact on wildlife can be devastating. “The animal was showing signs of brevetoxicisity. It was having facial seizures, was unable to swim and ... Read More »

The House of Horrors – Part IV

Photos by Carol Gassman
This is how the kitchen used to look.

By Carol Glassman Not much happened the first week after Uncle Steve and his assistant Diana took over renovating and repairing the flood-damaged house, but at least I received frequent calls and was kept in the loop as the insurance company approved various steps. At the end of the second week, a team from the company that had installed my precious unique quartzite counters appeared. I was a little nervous when the two men didn’t seem to know why they were sent and even more nervous when they continually commented on how heavy the counters looked. After a few phone ... 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 »

Election Day and the Markets

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ASK THE CFP® PRACTITIONER Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today. –Franklin D. Roosevelt Question: Does the stock market do better when there is a Democrat or a Republican in office as President? Answer: It’s a common misconception that financial markets do better when Republicans, or the Grand Old Party (GOP), occupies the White House. This is because they’re known for being “pro-business.” In contrast, Democrats are believed to support higher taxes and increased regulation, which tends to slow down economic and market growth. Therefore, the implication is that markets don’t do ... Read More »

George’s Web

PHOTO BY LAURIE KASPERBAUER
George Moore, Ambassador of Fun

MIND, BODY AND SPIRIT Laurie Kasperbauer lkasperbauer@gmail.com   “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people just exist.” – Oscar Wilde Kevin Bacon is a well-known Hollywood actor. His career began in the early 80s and he’s been in scores of films including “Footloose,” “Apollo 13,” “Mystic River” and “A Few Good Men.” He once commented that he had worked with every actor in Hollywood, or with someone who had worked with every other actor in Hollywood, and a phenomenon was born. It was called “The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” and was the creative brainchild of three ... Read More »

House of Horrors- Part III Taking the Bull By What Hurts

By Carol Glassman Even a patient person eventually loses it. The renovations to my flood-damaged home had come to a standstill. All the smiles and pats on the head with no results other than a newly-tiled floor under a leaky roof were no longer reassuring or even made any sense. Time for a showdown at the not-so OK Corral, wouldn’t you say? Tony, self-proclaimed contractor actually came to the house to tell me when the roof work would begin, assuring me all the permits were in place. I knew this was untrue. “How can this be?” I asked. “Although you ... Read More »

Local Gem

One of the ponds at Freedom Park surrounded by Florida flora. PHOTOS BY VICKIE KELBER

SPEAKING OF TRAVEL Vickie Kelber The joy of discovering someplace new doesn’t always have to involve a long car, train, ship, or plane ride. In the past, I’ve written a few columns on some of the wondrous places right in our own backyard including Shark Valley, Loop Road, and Bird Swamp Rookery. Following all of the rain we had earlier this year, a friend and I set out to hike through Picayune Strand State Forest. As we feared, the ground was too saturated to walk on and another option we explored was also too wet. We then decided to head for ... Read More »

Naomi’s Rogue-Urinating Advice

Naomi busy at work supervising. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

FOR THE LOVE OF CATS Naomi & Karina Paape chestergun@comcast.net Dear Fellow Felines: I’m still being a really bad girl. I’ve managed to stay away from the stove after my touch-and-go paw-burning incident of last month, but I’m still peeing in sinks and spraying walls and doors. As “supervisor” over here at For the Love of Cats, Marco’s no-kill cat rescue, people are always asking me why their cat is misbehaving. Yes, I know, that makes me a hypocrite! Take the other day for instance. My driver was driving me to Naples when a call came in from an exasperated woman ... Read More »

The House of Horrors – Part II

This is one of the ‘miraculous’ air scrubbers, 
said to remove dangerous and toxic mold and other air-borne particulates. Running them 24/7 as recommended guaranteed to render you deaf. PHOTO BY CAROL GLASSMAN

By Carol Glassman “Listen my children and you shall hear,” NOT the midnight story you may be expecting, but the second, hair-pulling installment of ‘Homeowner Beware’ or how not to choose a contractor and why you should trust no one who tells you, “Don’t worry!” Facing possible replacement of a roof, a house full of floor tiles, and a complete kitchen, I awaited the verdict when the contractor Tony agreed to meet with my insurance company. The insurance adjuster John and his area manager Tom met with Tony on August 11, and the three of them seemed to have a plan. Of course my plan was ... Read More »

The January Effect

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ASK THE CFP® PRACTITIONER Darcie Guerin darcie.guerin@raymondjames.com “Prosperity is not without many fears and distastes; and adversity is not without comforts and hopes.” – Sir Francis Bacon Question: Is it true that how the stock market behaves in January indicates what it does for the rest of the year? Answer: “As January goes, so goes the year,” was conceived in 1972 by Yale Hirsch, the creator of The Stock Trader’s Almanac. The January Effect simply means that January’s market performance, as measured by the S&P 500 Index, is an indication of how the market will do for the year. Back-testing to 1937, ... Read More »

GUEST COMMENTARY: Standing Watch

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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 the environment. They seem to believe that the more manatees we have, the better off our estuarine systems would be. Thanks to the “educational” initiatives of groups like Save the Manatee Club, they have also accepted the premise that all ... Read More »

Cuba: On the Road to Cienfuegos and Trinidad

Parque José Martí is WIFI enabled, a rarity in Cuba.

SPEAKING OF TRAVEL Vickie Kelber Three and four hours east of Havana, on the Caribbean side of Cuba, are two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Cienfuegos and Trinidad. Both are colonial cities, the first with obvious French influence, the other Spanish. The highway from Havana to Cienfuegos and Trinidad was in good condition, but many of the secondary roads appeared to be more primitive. Traffic was light; we passed a few Yank Tanks, those American classics from the 50s, Ladas, other Russian and some Chinese makes of cars, and some horse carts. Outside of Havana, there was a Mercedes Benz dealership; certainly ... Read More »

Panther Kittens Safe Behind the Scenes at Naples Zoo

Last summer, Naples Zoo created a permanent home for a blind panther that also included space away from the public area to give temporary care for injured or orphaned panthers. Already, the Zoo has taken in two more panthers. The first arrival was a now six-month-old female that was orphaned in October when her mother was killed by a vehicle. The latest arrival came in just last week – a 2 to 3 month old male. Naples Zoo’s carnivore team is caring for these young cats behind the scenes as part of a collaborative effort with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and Florida ... Read More »

FIDDLIN’ AROUND

PHOTO BY SUSAN KUBAT

By Kevin Kubat Conservancy Volunteer It’s a warm, sunny day. You decide to visit Tigertail Beach, and when you get there, it’s low tide. You look to the north, toward Hideaway Beach, and you see what appears to be a red carpet covering the sands. A special sort of carpet, as it’s constantly in motion. As you get closer, the carpet suddenly disappears, and you realize that the illusion of a carpet was created by the massing of hundreds of fiddler crabs which have scurried into their burrows as you approached. If you remain very still, the crabs will eventually ... Read More »