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Tag Archives: school

Salute to Veterans: Gordon Timmerman

The LCI anchored, Sea of Japan

  By Maggie Gust Gordon Timmerman served as a U.S. Navy Gunner’s Mate Third Class on LCI-669 in the Pacific Theater 1944 to 1946. Gordon remembers the radio reports of the bombing of Pearl Harbor when he was a freshman. People were stunned because there was no indication of aggression from Japan, rather peace negotiations were ongoing between the two countries. It took a couple of weeks for the full extent of the destruction at Pearl Harbor to be determined and also for America to realize the strength and numbers of the Japanese forces. “Really, the public was not aware ... Read More »

Salute to Veterans: Charles “Chuck” Purple

National conventions Chuck attended are displayed on his Legion hat.

By Maggie Gust Charles “Chuck” Purple served as a Coxswain in the 28th Special Naval Construction Battalion in the Pacific Theater from 1943 to 1946. Coxswain is a ranking who were easily recognizable because they wore their insignia on the right arm, not the usual left arm. Although born in South Bend, Indiana, Chuck Purple moved around a lot even as an infant. His father, a World War I veteran, was in the newspaper business and transferred frequently by his employer, the Nixon chain. Life was very good until the Depression, when the Purples, like millions of families, suffered a ... Read More »

Little Bar’s Merrill Fest Raises $20K

Merrill’s friends use five different modes of transportation to the Little Bar.  PHOTOS BY BARRY GWINN

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn Niki Bauer and her brother, Ray Bozicnik, have been the owners and operators of the Little Bar in Goodland for over 25 years. In general, Ray looks after the food end of the business, while Niki oversees the front of the house. Among Niki’s responsibilities is the booking of musicians, for the entertainment of the Little Bar patrons. Over the years she has developed a core of performers, which consistently delight her customers with some of the best blues music in Southwest Florida. I can personally attest to this. A 34-year-old blond haired, blue-eyed ... Read More »

MIA seniors crowned Homecoming King and Queen.

Patrick Michel, escorted by Annylusse Michel and Meagan Reisinger, escorted by Paul Reisinger, were 12th grade members of the Marco Island Academy Homecoming King and Queen Court on Friday, Oct. 17. Michel was chosen king and Reisinger queen.

By Roger LaLonde Two surprised seniors were named King and Queen at the Marco Island Academy Homecoming football game on Friday, Oct. 17. Patrick Michel and Meagan Reisinger won the honors. Michel is on the football team and Reisinger is a member of the cheerleading squad. Both are outstanding student athletes. Michel came to the school as a sophomore while Reisinger has gone all four years to MIA. They were the top vote getters, chosen by the student body. Michel smiled when he noticed that glitter from his crown was all over his football uniform. “I have enjoyed MIA,” Michel ... Read More »

Center for the Arts Announces Jane Watt as Gala Honoree


Submitted The Marco Island Center for the Arts announced today it will honor Jane Watt at its fundraising gala on February 28, 2016. This year’s gala theme is “Young at heART.” It will be a memorable evening of delights, dinner and auction at the Island Country Club. In announcing the honoree, gala chair Susan Darrow said, “We are honoring Jane for all of her contributions to educating our youth. The Art Center is proud to recognize Jane as an outstanding Marco Island citizen. Honoring Jane supports the Art Center’s commitment to providing the best for the young people in our ... Read More »

MIA Tech Club: Students Help Community With Technology Issues

Standing: Aidan Kahn and Kalli Jacobs. Seated, from left: Max Rufatt and Nick Figueroa.

By Coastal Breeze News Staff For the third year in a row, the Marco Island Academy Tech Club is giving back to the community by providing technology support to Marco Island residents, free of charge. Teacher Kirby Rients leads the group of 15 tech-savvy students, grades 9 to 12. He tells us that the students do everything from “turning on an iPhone to complete system overrides and installing virus protection software.” Community members can bring their technology problems to the school for a one- hour help session, if they need it. On a typical day, students assist with setting up ... Read More »

Standardized Test Results Showing MIA Student Progress


By Don Manley Marco Island Academy’s top administrators could hardly be more pleased with their students’ performance on two standardized testing programs that are a key barometer of academic preparedness for college. The charter high school recently released its most recent scores for the Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE) tests, which were administered to students in May and June. Also released were the MIA students’ results for the ACT college admissions examination, which is traditionally taken during a high school student’s junior and senior years. For both, MIA students showed marked improvement in most categories, when compared to ... Read More »

A Goodland Favorite Son Succeeds at MIA, Part Two

Picture day for the 2015 MIA Football Team.

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn A few days after being abandoned and picked up by his uncle, Tyler ended up with his sister in East Naples. She faithfully took him over to Marco Island Charter Middle School every school day during his 7th grade year. The next year, his dad returned and managed to rent another place in Goodland. Tyler moved back in with him for his 8th grade year. During this period, Jim Prange, the father of his best friend, was keeping tabs on Tyler. “My dad wasn’t doing so well,” Tyler recalled, “I had to get an ... Read More »

A Call to the Community for Help; Your Used Car can Change a Life


Submitted On a typical day, Marie*(not her real name) is up and about before the sun even rises. Each day this hard-working single mother spends her mornings dressing, feeding and readying her young children for school. This routine can be challenging, yet she manages it with grace. Once the children are safely at school, Marie faces yet another challenge: how to get to work. Marie left an abusive relationship with the clothes on her back. She works hard in the restaurant industry to support her children and make a better life for them. When her car broke down she was ... Read More »

A Goodland Favorite Son Succeeds at MIA – Part One


GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn Tyler Gresham is going into his junior year at Marco Island Academy. It will be tough to top his sophomore year there. Last year, Tyler, as fullback, was the leading rusher on the MIA football team. He also played middle linebacker on defense. During the winter and spring, he starred on the basketball and track teams. In the classroom, Tyler finished the year with a weighted 3.65 GPA. Tyler doesn’t load up with creampuff courses, either. His schedule included a number of honors and AICE courses. AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education) is written ... Read More »

Agreement with Collier County Schools Allows Marco Eagle Sanctuary to Plan for Future


By Don Manley Enhancement plans for the Marco Eagle Sanctuary are moving forward now that a lease-purchase agreement has been finalized between the property’s owner, the Collier County school district, and the Marco Eagle Sanctuary Foundation, which operates the Tigertail Court eco-park. The new agreement replaces a five-year lease the district and the foundation entered in 2011 that was to expire in April. Approved unanimously by the Collier school board, the lease-purchase agreement calls for continuing the $30,000 monthly lease payments, with the foundation having the option to buy the land, based on the average of two appraisals at the ... Read More »



By Roger LaLonde The preparation time is over. After three non-district games, Marco Island Academy takes the home field against Moorehaven in a Class 2A-7 district battle. Game time is 7 p.m. After suffering five losses in district play a season ago, the Manta Rays are ready to show they can play against some really tough competition. On Sept. 11, playing a school more their size, the Rays won an offensive battle, 41-35, over St. Andrews of…. In their previous two losses they too were high-scoring affairs. The Rays set a number of records against St. Andrews with its overall ... Read More »

Lakeland High just too much for MIA Rays

Greg Fowler, Marco Island Academy football coach, makes a point to his defensive line, from left, Marcus Seidman, Andrew Delgado, Kyle Ginther and Bon Deese.

By Roger LaLonde Coach Greg Fowler said he wanted to play strong teams going into district play so that his 2A Marco Island Rays will be ready for the type of competition that lies ahead. He got just that in 5A Lakeland High of Orlando, ranked 19th in the state. Lakeland took command of the overmatched Rays for a 59-13 win at Winterberry Park on Sept. 4. It was the second straight week that Lakeland High scored 59 points in its wins. Next up for the Rays is another non-district opponent, St. Andrews of Boca Raton. The Rays play host ... Read More »

Welcome: Listen and Learn


COACH WAYNE’S CORNER Wayne Clark Welcome to Coach Wayne’s Corner! I would like to introduce myself. My name is Wayne Clark (aka “Coach Wayne”), and I am honored to have the opportunity to write articles related to the sports of tennis, pickleball and racquetball for the Coastal Breeze News. I am originally from Houston, Texas, and I have been a career professional tennis instructor for over 23 years. I have been the tennis instructor at the Marco Island Racquet Center since 2001, and offer certified, professional tennis instruction to all levels of players. In addition we also now offer instruction in ... Read More »

Seafaring Norwegian Settles in Goodland

Svein, still in command, at Goodland. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

GOODLAND LIFE By Barry Gwinn After spending much of his life on the high seas, Svein Sleipnes (pronounced “Sven Slipeness”) has chosen a quiet canal-front residence in Goodland to ultimately spend his retirement. Svein and his wife Katherine, along with sons Hans, 15, and Christian, 12, became my neighbors in 2011. Like many on the east coast, they were attracted by the uncrowded west coast, and particularly by the leisurely laid-back lifestyle of Goodland. Being on the water with great fishing next door didn’t hurt. Svein Sleipnes was born in 1957, in the picturesque town of Volda on the ... Read More »

Trump: A Friend’s Perspective Roy Eaton’s Friendship with Trump Spans Decades

Donald Trump today. Photo by The Trump Organization

By Don Manley It’s hard to turn on the television or read anything pertaining to American politics without encountering the name Donald Trump. The real estate mogul, reality show star, author and now, politician, has captured the national news media’s attention, if not the country’s, with his bold and provocative remarks while on the campaign trail. “The Donald,” with his outsized personality, showman’s flamboyance, plainspoken pronouncements, and high-profile business dealings and personal life, has long been a lightning rod for controversy. Now, it is his campaign to be the Republican Party’s presidential nominee that has attracted both ardent support and ... Read More »

Collaboration, Team Effort Key to Success of MIA Expansion

Two brand-new  modulars at MIA will serve as science labs. PHOTOS BY JESSICA HERNSTADT

By Coastal Breeze News Staff When Marco Island Academy opens its doors on Monday, August 17, students will be greeted by two brand-new science labs. This year the young school reached full capacity with 250 students. To accommodate additional students, two modular classrooms have been added to the campus. Keeping true to its STEM curriculum, the new modulars will be used as labs for chemistry/physics and biology classes. Planning for the project began last September, when MIA’s board of directors examined the school’s needs and planned for future growth. The addition of the two new modulars, build-out, infrastructure, interior and ... Read More »


Roger Raymond at his desk. 
Raymond has been with MICMS since the beginning,
formulating its sports program. PHOTOS BY ROGER LALONDE

By Roger Lalonde Roger Raymond has stepped down as athletic director at the Marco Island Academy. Kelly Monnot, dean of students, and successful volleyball coach, takes over. I have known Roger Raymond since we met when the Marco Island Charter Middle School (MICMS) was getting off the ground some 17 years ago. His “aw shucks” straight ways caught me off guard when so many were playing it politically correct to get what turned out to be one of, if not the best, charter schools in Florida. There were many key people who believed in the absolute need for the school. ... Read More »

Get Ready to Go Back to School at Marco Island Academy!


By Coastal Breeze News Staff It’s almost that time of year again, as the summer comes to its end, and the teachers and students at Marco Island Academy are getting ready for a new academic year. MIA has announced that there will be seven new teachers this year: Sandi Castillo (English), Dorothy Chapman (Math), Lianna Fried (Performing Arts), Farrell Kellener (ESE/SWD), Gerry Miller (Science), Mariah Walther (Spanish) and Michael Weyrauch (History). Two new staff members are also joining the MIA team: Maegan Carr (Receptionist) and Elona Ruci (Comptroller). When school doors open in August, we will bring you more about ... Read More »

Kiwanis Summer Social Marco Style

Forty-five guests attended the Kiwanis Summer Social on August 1.

By Coastal Breeze News Staff The Kiwanis Summer Social on Saturday, August 1 brought together Kiwanis members and their spouses to socialize in Marco Island style. Marco Island Kiwanis members Bryan and Rondi Hauser organized the social event and acted as hosts. Rondi’s brother, also a Kiwanis International member, opened up his beautiful waterfront home to forty-five guests for the evening. Although billed as a “Pizza Party,” the guests each brought additional side dishes showing off their culinary talents. A birthday cake emerged and “Happy Birthday” was sung at the end of the evening to celebrate Ken Pagach’s birthday. Guests ... Read More »