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Tag Archives: Everglades

Collier Tourism Industry Off to a Roaring Start

First Quarter Results Presented at Industry Briefing Event Prior to Southwest Florida Travel Rally Celebrating National Travel & Tourism Week  Florida’s Paradise Coast – Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades – saw big increases in tourism visitation and spending during first quarter 2015.These numbers continue the trend of strong growth in visitation, economic impact to Collier County and tourism-related employment seen in 2014. Total economic impact from visitors in first quarter 2015 (January through March) was $730,429,100, an 11.7% increase over first quarter 2014. Total visitation was 621,000, a 4.8% jump. Occupancy hit 89.7%, a 1.5% rise over 2014’s peak ... Read More »

Sugden Regional Park to host the 2015 Pro Watercross Tour World Championships

Event to be held September 19-27, 2015   The 2015 Pro Watercross Tour World Championships will be held at Sugden Regional Park in Naples from Sept. 19 – 27, 2015.              This weeklong event showcases the Pro Watercross Tour and combines the electricity and appeal of traditional beach events with the high speed thrills of competitive motorsports says Rob Wells, Collier County Senior Sports Marketing Manager. “Dramatic staging, professional sound system, banners, flags, and pit tents set the stage for a truly large-scale event – this is like the NASCAR of Watercross,” Wells said. The Tour features a contingent of up-and-coming men and ... Read More »

Marsh Walk

A tri-color heron feeds in the shallow water of the marsh.

By Carl and Joan Kelly Close to Marco is a relatively new walk, 10,000 Islands Marsh Walk, a mixed grass and mangrove marsh. It has a two-level observation tower with a good panoramic view of the marsh that has been revitalized by increased water flow, apparently one of the early benefits of Everglades restoration. The walk runs through the marsh with water, mangroves and grasses on both sides. We saw gators crossing the walk. From the observation tower we saw dozens of birds feasting on small fish, crustaceans and insects, and flying over head. This year the white pelicans landed ... Read More »

New Guidebook for Kids by Karen T. Bartlett

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By Pat Newman Looking for fun things to do with your kids during spring break? Pick up a copy of A (mostly) Kids’ Guide to Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades by Naples resident Karen T. Bartlett, click your seatbelts and take off for adventure. The book is written for youngsters, but includes tons of fun facts and an indextreasure of names, web addresses, and phone numbers for the sights included in the colorful 79-page soft-cover guide. The section on Marco Island starts off with the Calusa Indians, and mentions the Marco Island Historical Museum and its life-size interactive Calusa ... Read More »

COLLIER COUNTY LIBRARY TO HOST FIRST EVER AUTHOR AND BOOK FEST ONSATURDAY, FEBRUARY 21

The Collier County Public Library will honor our local authors at its first ever Author and Book Fest. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 21, at the South Regional Library, 8065 Lely Cultural Parkway, Naples, Florida 34113. Join more than 30 local authors to discuss, celebrate and discover books for adults, children and teens. This is the perfect venue to meet local writers, purchase books and participate in several breakout sessions. Those sessions include: An 11 a.m. talk from local author D.K. Christi, who takes readers on a world tour from South Korea to ... Read More »

Local History Authors at Fest

Submitted Local historians Betsy Perdichizzi and Marya Repko will be signing their books at the Author Fest held by the Marco Island Writers on Wednesday, March 4, from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Marco Center for the Arts, 1010 Winterberry Avenue. Betsy is well-known for her publication A Girl Called Tommie; Queen of Marco Island which tells how this amazing woman was ahead of her time in the progress of the island and fought for the formation of Collier County. Marya writes about the Everglades area and has just published a new book A Brief History of the Smallwood Store in Chokoloskee, Florida. And, by the way, there will be wine & cheese to go ... Read More »

$5 BILLION TO RESTORE THE EVERGLADES

Governor Rick Scott proposed a dedicated source of revenue that will provide more than $5 billion for Everglades restoration over the next 20 years as part of his 2015-2016 “KEEP FLORIDA WORKING” budget. If passed by the Legislature, $150 million will go towards Everglades restoration this year. In addition, Governor Scott’s proposed budget also includes $150 million that will be allocated toward land acquisition and management which will focus in part on protecting land for the Florida panther. Governor Scott said, “Florida has an abundance of natural resources that help create a foundation for our growing economy, whether it is driving ... Read More »

Mike Owen, Fakahatchee Biologist, to Speak: Restoring the Rarest Epiphytic Orchid in the Fakahatchee Strand

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Thursday, December 18, 2014, 6:30-8:30 pm One of the rarest epiphytic orchids in the Fakahatchee Strand, the Cowhorn or Cigar orchid, is listed on Florida’s Endangered Plant Index. Efforts have been underway for several years to restore this once-flourishing orchid. The long road from orchid seed to successful seedling will be told by Mike Owen, Fakahatchee State Park biologist, at the Gulf Coast Orchid Alliance’s “Third Thursday Orchid Event” on December 18, 2014 at the Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church at 1225 Piper Blvd., Naples, FL 34110 from 6:30–8:30 pm. Orchid lovers are invited (no charge). Mike Owen has been the biologist ... Read More »

Come Meet Marco’s Newborn Dolphins

You can see the body creases or "fetal folds" on this newborn dolphin. It is less than 2 weeks old. Photos by Kent  Meredith of the Dolphin Explorer

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Come join Bob McConville of Steppingstone Ecotours/Dolphin Explorer and Coastal Breeze News for two very special evenings at the Rose History Auditorium. On Tuesday, Oct. 28, from 7-8 PM, McConville will introduce children of all ages to the young dolphin population around Marco Island, at the Rose History Auditorium. The program will take the audience into the world of the bottlenose dolphin where they will meet the newborns of the past three years, spend some time getting to know the new youngsters seen so far in 2014 and then meet the potential moms that may ... Read More »

It’s Gator Hatchin’ Time in the Glades

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Stepping Stones Bob McConville Master Naturalist A few weeks ago I took a walk through several different areas of the Everglades, and there was a very distinct and serene quiet, a sound of silence that was not there in early summer. During the months of May thru July, I could hear the unmistakeable bellowing of male alligators trying to entice the females. Some of these boys have traveled great distances to find a mate. Now, all is calm. Courtship rituals are complete, and females are tending to their nests, waiting for the young to hatch. The males have moved on, ... Read More »

Florida Wildlife Federation names Mike Owen Forest Conservationist of 2014

Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park biologist Michael Scott Owen has been named Forest Conservationist of the Year by the Florida Wildlife Federation at its 77th annual Conservation Awards Banquet held in Naples.  Owen was recognized for his 20 years of work at Fakahatchee documenting the diversity of plants and animals and measuring water levels—data that is critical to Everglades restoration projects. The FWF stated: ”For his deep love of nature and tireless efforts on behalf of this very special place, the Federation is delighted to name Mike Owen as Forest Conservationist of the year.” Owen’s enthusiastic efforts to educate the public ... Read More »

National Parks Big Biz in SW Florida

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Submitted A new National Park Service report shows that more than 2.5 million visitors to the national parks in South Florida spent $206 million last year in surrounding communities. That spending supported roughly 2,700 jobs in the region. Locally at Big Cypress National Preserve, the impact encompassed just over 1 million visitors, spending an estimated $76 million in Southwest Florida communities and creating approximately 997 jobs. Combined 2013 report figures include those for Biscayne, Everglades and Dry Tortugas National Parks, as well as Big Cypress. The total for the four parks is up slightly from the previous year, while visitor ... Read More »

‘Experience Nature’ with Tyler MacDonald

Tyler only uses two cameras. This camera for outdoor shots and another for underwater shots.

Submitted The Marco Island Historical Museum is delighted to host “Experience Nature” a photographic exhibit from Tyler MacDonald, which runs July 1-Aug. 30. Marco’s own MacDonald will be exhibiting some of his latest photography at. At just 18 years old, MacDonald has already won numerous awards and national recognition for his work including second-place in the National Wildlife Federation’s annual photo contest. His passion for wildlife photography is evident in each and every photograph. Taking risks and spending hours waiting to capture the perfect image, MacDonald has encountered many venomous snakes, sat in trees and been suspended above water to ... Read More »

Manatee Middle School Hurricanes ‘ROAR’

Karina Miranda and Seraphanime Garcia paired up with a presentation  on manatees and Florida panthers. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

By Nancy Richie At Manatee Middle School, the teachers and sixth-grade students didn’t slow down just because school was winding down for the summer. For eight weeks, they worked hard, researching their own Southwest Florida backyards. This hands-on, end-of-the-school-year research assignment is part of the Collier County Public School (CCPS) Pre-Laureate writing program. CCPS’s most capable students have the opportunity to pursue an AP Laureate diploma, the most demanding CCPS diploma available. This Laureate Program continues to grow with 80 Laureate graduates from five high schools this past year, compared with just three at one school when the program began ... Read More »

Orchids of the Everglades

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Orchids of the Everglades Florida history buffs, as well as orchid lovers, are invited (no charge) to the Gulf Coast Alliance’s “Third Thursday Orchid Event” on June 19, 2014 at the Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church at 1225 Piper Blvd., Naples, FL 34110 from 6:30–8:30 pm. Tricia Rose, award-winning orchid hobbyist and Director of Education for the Alliance, will present Orchids of the Everglades, a poignant and beautiful presentation about the highest concentration of wild orchids in North America. Please mark your calendar for June 19! For information please call (239) 498-9741 or visit www.GulfCoastOrchidAlliance.com. Read More »

Apply For Fall Quota Permits in June!

There are several types of quota permits, and most are issued by random drawing. This year there’s been a change: The wild hog application periods will now be grouped with the other fall quota hunts. The first-phase application period – for archery, muzzleloading gun, general gun, wild hog, youth, family, track vehicle (a swamp buggy with tank treads), airboat and mobility-impaired quota hunt permits – runs June 1-30, so you’ve got all month to submit your application. You may submit one application for each of the hunt types, and there is no fee to apply. One thing to remember though: Unless ... Read More »

DEP Issues Permit for Herbert Hooker Dike Repair

On Friday, the Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Ecosystem Projects issued a consolidated Environmental Resource Permit, or ERP, to the United States Army Corps of Engineers for the Herbert Hoover Dike (HHD) Repair and Rehabilitation Project (R&R Project). The permit authorizes construction and replacement of Culverts 2, 12A and HP-2 with new water control structures S-278 (C-2), S-274 (C-12A) and S-287 (C-HP-2). The department estimates this proactive comprehensive approach will save over 1,000 work hours, more than $40,000 in tax payers money and will result in a significant reduction in time needed for future permit authorizations. The HHD R&R Project ... Read More »

Students Take Center Stage

This watercolor of ‘Oak Leaf Hydrangea’ was done by Wanda Coady.

By Coastal Breeze News Staff Student artists — young and old — took over the galleries at the Marco Island Center for the Arts during the month of April. Works from adult students who have taken classes at the Center as well as some completed by students of the Marco Island Academy are on display now throughout the Center and in the La Petite Galerie through April 24. For the Center students, this was a juried exhibit, giving them an opportunity to “strut their stuff” to show their friends and relatives what they have learned and how far they have ... Read More »

Marriott to Renovate Rookery Golf Course

The Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort has two championship  golf courses — The Rookery and Hammock Bay. SUBMITTED PHOTO

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Later this month, the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort, Golf Club & Spa will begin a six-month, $4 million renovation to its award-winning Rookery Golf Course. The course will close until November. The project announcement comes on the heels of a number of accolades for golf on Florida’s Paradise Coast — Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades. First, the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) — which held its annual meeting at the Marriott — selected Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades as its 2014 Golf Destination of the Year for North America. Additionally, ... Read More »

Camping at the Y Keeps Youth Moving, Learning and Exploring All Summer Long

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KEEP MOVING TODAY FOR A HEALTHIER, WELL-BALANCED FAMILY TOMORROW! Did You Know- According to the New England Journal of Medicine today’s young people are not expected to outlive their parents!  This is a startling statistic and is mostly related to Youth Obesity-Type 2 Diabetes. Summer is the ideal time for kids to get up, get out and explore. But, for some kids summer means no access to recreational and educational activities to help them learn, grow and thrive during out-of-school time. As a result, some kids can experience learning loss and gain weight twice as fast than during the school ... Read More »