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Tag Archives: right

Caves of the Yucatan Peninsula and Florida

Bob and Cathy explore an underground  cavern in Mexico. SUBMITTED PHOTO

STEPPING STONES  Bob McConville  Master Naturalist In early June of this year, my wife, Cathy, and I took the opportunity to visit the Yucatan Peninsula area of Mexico. The marine life and geology of this region are positively fascinating. In addition to snorkeling with whale sharks — the largest fish on the planet — we ventured inland to Mexico’s jungles to learn more about the ecology. What we found was absolutely surprising. This portion of the peninsula sits right where the Gulf of Mexico meets the Caribbean Sea. The closest land mass is Cuba, and just north of that is ... Read More »

Fighting a Boat Fire

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By Lt. Bill Hempel  United States Power Squadrons In Florida, a 64-foot yacht that was ravaged by fire burned to the waterline. Follow up stories reported that the boat was presenting a hazard to navigation and was later towed to a nearby marina to be salvaged. There are a few lessons we can learn from this incident. Obviously, one lesson is to take all of the steps necessary to prevent fire, but when such a yacht is ravaged by fire, we can see just how horrific and all-consuming a boat fire can be. Fortunately, the subject boat was near the ... 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 »

Highlights from New Association Laws

FILE PHOTO

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 »

Independence Day 2014

USS Constitution. FILE PHOTO

BEYOND THE COAST Tarik Ayasun tayasun@taray.com I am writing this article on July 4, 2014. Today is Independence Day. A very special day when we as Americans commemorate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring our independence from the kingdom of Great Britain, when a number of patriots said “NO” to a king and “YES” to freedom and established a representative Republic. As a naturalized citizen, one of millions who chose to pledge their allegiance to this great country, I am full of pride, happiness and patriotism. Seeing the stars and stripes fly against a perfectly ... Read More »

Native Beauty on Display

The starting point at the MIHM native plant walk.

By Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com During the hustle and bustle of an average day, I wonder how often we notice just how amazing Southwest Florida is. I find when I take time to notice the natural beauty of my surroundings, I truly appreciate living here. The native animal and plant life that surrounds us is a fascinating mixture of beauty and strength. Mother Nature is wild, and taming her takes a special touch. The Marco Island Historical Museum (MIHM) has accepted her challenge, and has been busy cultivating an impressive exhibit featuring native plant life available around-the-clock for the enjoyment and ... Read More »

Red Tide ‘Not Present’ — For Now

These ominous blood-red tides are caused by a large accumulation of algae in coastal waters and are especially common along the coast of Florida. While disconcerting, only some are harmful to marine life: these are known as HABs, harmful algal blooms, and can even pose a risk to humans.

By Melinda Gray melinbrya3@yahoo.com This time last year, Marco Island and other Southwest Florida coastal communities were reeling from the negative effects of a prolonged red tide bloom. Reports of the bloom began in December 2012 with Marco Island presenting “very low” to “low” concentrations of red tide, and by mid-February 2013, those concentrations crept up to “medium” status. The 2013-2014 season has been a very different story. Currently, the Collier County Natural Resources Department is reporting that Karenia brevis, or K. brevis — the naturally-occurring dinoflagellate that causes “Florida red tide” — is “not present” in samples of water ... Read More »

Swimming with the Largest Fish on Earth

The mouth of this whale shark is nearly 4 feet wide. It filters plankton and small fish from the sea water to obtain protein. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

Stepping Stones Bob McConville Master Naturalist This column is dedicated to Marine Biologist James Livacarri, whose passion, knowledge and smile deeply in spire tens of thousands of visitors to Marco Island. May your seas always be calm, and may the road rise up to meet you. May all of your journeys be pleasant, and may you and your family remain continually blessed. Thank you, my friend! I couldn’t believe my eyes! Our boat was right along side the largest fish in the world. The captain cautiously edged the vessel forward until we were about 30 feet in front of the ... Read More »

A Meeting with Mr. Misguided

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Artful Life Tara O’Neill You are NOT going to believe what happened to me. This story begs the question: If someone is misguided, then who or what guided them there? I recently participated in a Naples event called “An Evening on 5th.” It involved visual artists and musicians scattered up and down the avenue to enhance the dining and shopping experience of the out-and-abouters. Sounded nice. I rather like talking to folks when I’m at my easel; I feel the more information the public has about the creation of art, the better for artists. The event was well organized, although ... Read More »

How Can My Opponent Be the Umpire?

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READ MY TIPS Doug Browne dbrowne912@aol.com Unless you are playing in a Grand Slam tennis tournament or a Master Series pro event, your opponent will be calling the lines in your next USTA or CTA match. Is it possible that your tennis foe has so much power? There is no way to sugarcoat this topic. With no umpires in sight, you have to rely on your opponent to call the ball as honestly as possible. However, tennis players are not the only participants who must deal with this fate. Here is an example of how crazy rules are in the great ... Read More »

Planning for the Future at MIA

Jane Watt and Melissa Scott are all smiles these days and rightly so. The leaders of Marco Island Academy are celebrating the testing gains their students made in 2014 — both in the end of course tests and the FCAT-2.0. MIA’s first-time test-takers made the largest gains of any high school in Collier County in Algebra and the second largest for both U.S. History and Reading. Overall, in learning gains, MIA ranked first amongst all Collier County high schools in Biology and U.S. History, second in Geometry and third in Algebra. “This really sets us up for success,” says Scott, ... 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 done about 40 books. Of those here are a few who lived on Marco at some point: “Tell Me a Story, Grandpa” by Bill Rose, “An Ordinary Man in Extraordinary Times” by Tom Owens, “In the Shadow of Satan” and ... Read More »

Coastal Comments

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Donna Fiala donnafiala@colliergov.net On Friday, June 6, at 10 AM, a D-Day 70th Anniversary Observance was held at Hodges University. The Collier County Sheriff’s Color Guard posted the Colors, and Megan Cook sang the National Anthem beautifully. Dr. Peter Thomas — 2004 Humanitarian of the Year — gave a stirring remembrance of what happened on that terrible day in Normandy when our soldiers landed at Omaha Beach. He mentioned Bedford Biles as one of the people he so greatly admired and remembered. Hopefully, Fay reads this column, and finds her wonderful husband was remembered this morning by the great Peter ... Read More »

Plumeria in Florida

PHOTOS BY MIKE MALLOY

PLANT TALK Mike Malloy mikemalloy@naplesbutterfly.com Like a beautiful butterfly emerging from a plain brown chrysalis, magnificent blossoms sprout from seemingly lifeless branches every spring. Plumeria, also known as Frangipani, are colorful tropical shrubs or small trees native to Central and South America, Mexico and the Caribbean. They are readily available in pink, red, yellow, white and every combination in between. Plumeria are extremely popular in Hawaii, where they grow in abundance. Leis, the famous flower necklaces given to tourists upon their arrival, are made from Plumeria blossoms. Fun fact: In many Polynesian countries, women wear a blossom behind their ear ... Read More »

Harmony, Discord and Composition

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Artful Life Tara O’Neill taraogallery@marcocable.com Passion vs. serenity; active vs. static; harmony vs. discord. These aren’t just the building blocks of artful compositions, but of all human relationships. What we seek is balance – and it’s not one-size-fits-all – it’s personal. In color theory, the juxtaposition of color-wheel opposites – oddly called compliments – creates a super-charged vibrancy (just put a dot of purple paint in the middle of a yellow sun and watch for a solar explosion). Color-wheel neighbors, however, create a calmer, more soothing composition. Elsewhere in visual arts, a horizontal line is perceived as static, a vertical ... Read More »

Pre-swing Fundamentals Part 2: Address Position

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Now that we’ve developed a solid grip in Part One it is time to address the ball with the correct posture. People are made in different shapes and sizes. There is no one perfect posture in golf. Depending on height, arm length, leg length and torso length an athletic golf posture will look different. However, there are fundamentals of setting up to a golf ball that are absolute. The picture provided shows three different address position. N stands for neutral spine, which is desirable. C stands for a C curve in the back/spine at address, ... Read More »

Reward Yourself for Patience

Facing South, 11PM June 27. The star clouds of Sagittarius, in a dark sky, sometimes look like real clouds. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

SOUTHERN SKIES By Mike P. Usher usher34105@earthlink.net Careful readers may notice this is the 100th column of Southern Skies. If you have been reading the columns and studying the sky for the past two years, now is the time to reward yourself – because you know the sky better than almost everyone. It’s time to buy your first telescope; but do careful research first. If you do not you will buy the wrong telescope. It is difficult to buy the right telescope, but it is easy to point out what the wrong one will be; it’s the one you will ... Read More »

Marco Makes Strides Against Breast Cancer

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AMERICAN CANCE SOCIETY CARES Lisa Honig In 2013, a group of passionate volunteers led by Marco Island American Cancer Society board member Monte Lazarus worked together with the American Cancer Society to hold a “Luau Against Breast Cancer.” For a first-time event we had a wonderful response from the community with support from First National Bank of the Gulf Coast, Hammock Bay Golf and Country Club and the Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort and Spa. This year’s event will once again be held in October (date/location TBD) and the first planning meeting will take place on June 23, 2014 in ... Read More »

Approved: 1st Reading of Marriott PUD Amendment

Marco Island city councilors listen to both sides of the Marriott project debate during the June 2 meeting.

By Noelle H. Lowery The Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort’s $150 million renovation plan cleared its first hurdle Monday (June 2) night when City Council approved the amendment to the hotel’s planned unit development and master plan by a vote of 4-2. Councilors Amadeo Petricca and Chuck Kiester voted against the measure, and Councilor Joe Batte was not in attendance. The approval came after nearly six hours of presentations, impassioned community responses, in-depth discussion and a surprise promise from Marriott General Manager Rick Medwedeff. The hotel’s ownership group will kick in $1 million to expedite the renovation of the Smokehouse ... Read More »

The Four Pre-Swing Fundamentals: Part 1 of 4

Exhibit B. 3 most widely used ways to grip a golf= club. Left to right: 10 Finger, Over Lap, Inter Lock.

Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org The four pre-swing fundamentals of the golf swing are grip, stance, alignment and ball position. The pre-swing fundamentals are the most important elements to becoming a better golfer. There are a million different ways to swing the club and make the golf ball go towards the target, however correct pre-swing fundamentals are universal. Bad fundamentals lead to bad habits in the golf swing. I teach golfers who aim 30 yards right of their target. The student will hit the first shot 30 yards right of their target, turn to me and say, “See, I told ... Read More »