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Home » Tag Archives: Southwest Florida

Tag Archives: Southwest Florida

Up a Creek at the Nature Festival

The kayak launch point was at the very end a slow, three-mile drive down Shell Island Road, After donning life vests and stashing our valuables, we were helped into our kayaks one by one before our tour.

By Melinda Gray melinda@coastalbreezenews.com As a reporter, I’m often presented with opportunities to participate in fun local activities; invited to join in some wild adventures; and sometimes even confronted with daunting new challenges. Recently, I was invited to join a two-hour, guided kayaking trip on the morning of Friday, Jan. 16, as part of the Coastal Breeze’s coverage of the 11th Annual Southwest Florida Nature Festival at Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. When I agreed to take part in the tour, I was unsure of which category the day’s activity would eventually fall under. Having only kayaked twice in ... Read More »

The Family and Fragrance

Clerodendrum Splendes (Glory Bower)

PLANT TALK Mike Malloy mikemalloy@naplesbutterfly.com Clerodendrum is a beautiful, flowering plant that can be found blooming and thriving all over our South Florida landscape. With more than 300 species of vines and shrubs in the genus, they are as plentiful as they are lovely. Some are grown primarily for the large, beautiful flowers that emerge in clusters. Others are wanted mostly for their fragrance. Either way, they’re a great addition to anyone’s garden. Many of the varieties can be found easily; others are rarer and must be hunted down a bit. Finding them is part of the fun of using them ... Read More »

Painting Southwest Florida’s History

Second Place: Pete Sottong’s acrylic on hand-carved wood block relief depicts oyster, clam and lightening whelk shells. They were among the bivalves and other marine life whose shells were used in the mounds constructed by the Calusa Indians, Marco’s Island’s original inhabitants.

By Don Manley Southwest Florida’s days as a frontier outpost is the subject of a new art exhibit at the Marco Island History Museum. Entitled “Painting SW Florida History,” the show depicts life in Collier County from the late 1800s to the 1920s. The artworks tell the stories of settlers like Tommie Barfield, who arrived on Caxambas with her family in 1902; W.T. Collier, who settled on Marco in 1870; and Barron Gift Collier, who bought large tracts of Lee County in the early 1920s. At the opening reception on Tuesday, Jan. 7, the winners of the show’s juried portion ... Read More »

Flea Market on Stage

Rockerfeller’s Attic was recon and research for Betsy Bennett.

Submitted “FleaBitten — Good Buys Gone Bad,” the one-act musical comedy playing at The Rose History Auditorium next weekend, is not just a figment of someone’s imagination. As research, co-author Betsy Bennett, took a double-wide stall at Flamingo Island in Bonita Springs and called it Rockefeller’s Attic. It offered stuff that had accumulated in her and her partner’s garages, in their parents’ storage facilities, “and, well, anything we could find that could be dusted off,” she recalls. But, selling the goods wasn’t the real reason for Rockefeller’s Attic; it was the flea market vendors who surrounded it, and the script ... Read More »

Minto Communities wins National Sales, Marketing Award

Minto’s Discovery Sales Center at The Isles of Collier Preserve  was recognized with National Sales and Marketing Council Silver Award. SUBMITTED photo

By Coastal Breeze News Staff The Isles of Collier Preserve by Minto Communities has received a prestigious Silver Award from the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) National Sales & Marketing Council. The Silver Award for “Best Welcome Center” recognized Minto’s Discovery Sales Center at The Isles of Collier Preserve in Naples. Minto is one of only five recipients in the entire country and the only welcome center in Florida to be recognized with a Silver Award in this category. For 35 years, The Nationals — National Sales and Marketing Awards — have paid tribute to superior sales and marketing achievements. ... Read More »

McCarty Group: The Secrets of Success

The McCarty Group is Denis Smith  (l-r), Nancy Brewer and Wendy and Mike McCarty. PHOTO BY NOELLE H. LOWERY

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Mike and Wendy McCarty are very busy these days. Along with having the No. 1 market share on Marco, the career realtors with the Marco Island office of Keller Williams Realty Inc. (KW) — along with their team members Denis Smith and Nancy Brewer — increased their business by 73 percent in the last year, and most recently, they ranked in the top 50 agents in closed volume for all KW agents internationally. Specifically, they ranked 44th out of 110,000 agents. “The McCarty Group has experienced amazing growth in the last year,” explains Cindy Griesse, ... Read More »

Ice Skating… the Marco Way

Jenna Golec, 8, shows off her painted face. PHOTOS BY DON MANLEY

By Coastal Breeze News Staff It was a picture perfect Southwest Florida day — sunny, breezy and temperatures in the mid-70s. It was the perfect day for…ice skating on Marco Island. A part of Christmas Island Style’s annual holiday events, a 60 x 25-foot synthetic ice rink was set up in Veterans Memorial Park by West Palm Beach-based BellaICE to allow Marco Islanders to take a turn on the ice. The company also offered 70 pairs of skates — both figure and hockey ice skates — for everyone. The day was made complete with a bounce house and giant mountain ... Read More »

‘Up Close and Personal’ with Randall Kenneth Jones

Randall Kenneth Jones and Peter Thomas at work in Thomas’ home recording studio. PHOTO BY KAREN KAYSER BENSON

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Randall Kenneth Jones grew up in Missouri — the Show-Me State — and on Thursday, Jan. 8, he is going to show Marco Island his true colors during the Marco Island Center for the Arts’ first “Up Close and Personal” presentation of 2015. Beginning at 5:30 PM, Jones will regale attendees the wit and wisdom he has gleaned from the many interviews he has conducted while writing his column, “Business Class.” The Naples Press Club, of which Jones is vice president, is a sponsor for the event. “Part of the Naples Press Club’s sponsorship of ... Read More »

Over 7,000 Teddy Bears Collected at the Annual Germain Arena Teddy Bear Toss Sponsored by IBERIABANK

Photos courtesy of Al Larson Photography

IBERIABANK, a 127-year-old subsidiary of IBERIABANK Corporation, partnered with Germain Arena and the Florida Everblades for a fifth year to host the annual Teddy Bear Toss on Dec. 13. Over 7,000 stuffed animals were collected for the Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, Toys for Tots and several other local charities. David Gordley, market president for IBERIABANK, and players from the Everblades delivered the toys to children at the hospital on Dec. 15. “This was such a heart-warming experience. The children at the hospital were smiling ear to ear from the teddy bears and star struck by the Everblades players,” ... Read More »

Marco Island Historical Museum features “Painting S.W. Florida History”

The Marco Island Historical Museum is delighted to present the “Painting S.W. Florida History” exhibit from Jan. 6 to March 21, 2015.  An opening artist reception will take place on Jan. 6 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Admission is free.  During the reception, artwork will be juried by a panel of experts and will include a “Peoples’ Choice Award” for attendees to vote on their favorite piece. The exhibition portrays Southwest Florida as one of the last frontiers of the United States.  Each piece tells the story of settlers like Tommie Barfield, who arrived on Caxambas with her family ... Read More »

Conservancy Announces January Nature Experiences

Conservancy of Southwest Florida offers daily electric boat cruises of the Gordon
River. Additionally, Boat and Brunch events are hosted on Sundays.

By Coastal Breeze News Staff The folks at the Conservancy of Southwest Florida are busy gearing up for the new year and new nature experiences in January. As always, the Conservancy invites the public to take part in all of its events at the Nature Center, its Eco-Cruises of Rookery Bay and its off-site nature walks. At the Nature Center “Boat and Brunch” will be held Sundays in January at 11 AM. Take a guided tour of the Gordon River aboard a Conservancy electric boat, and stopping for brunch at the Naples Harbour Yacht Club. Reservations are recommended, and the ... Read More »

Botana Named “Citizen of the Year”

Maria Botana, left, was honored by the Golden Gate Civic Association during the 2014 Citizens of the Year Banquet, Nov. 13, 2014. She was joined by fellow honorees, from left, Carol Fries of the Golden Gate Kiwanis Club, Public Service Employee of the Year; Pat Meulenberg of the Golden Gate Fire & Rescue District; Pat and Michael LaMendola, who accepted the award from the Rotary Club of Naples-Collier on behalf of the late Mario LaMendola. Photo Credit: Kaydee Tuff

Maria Botana of IBERIABANK was recognized as “Citizen of the Year” by the Golden Gate President’s Council at a reception on Nov. 13.  Botana, who serves as vice president and branch manager for IBERIABANK’s Golden Gate office located at 5247 Golden Gate Parkway, is well known for her volunteerism and professionalism. She has been a banker in Southwest Florida for nearly 35 years and has helped many non-profits, families and businesses. “The Golden Gate Civic Association held a strategy meeting at the start of the year to identify specific areas of opportunity for our community. Bringing businesses together to foster ... Read More »

Creek Course at Fiddler’s Creek

For the 10th consecutive year, The Creek Course at Fiddler’s Creek is ranked among Golfweek Magazine’s Top 100 Residential Golf Courses in the country. Designed by acclaimed golf course designer Arthur Hills, The Creek Course is the only golf course in Southwest Florida to earn this recognition 10 years in a row. The 18-hole, Par 72 Creek Course is designed in harmony with the community’s lush natural surroundings and features a series of holes that are strategic and challenging, yet accessible for golfers of all skill levels. It was reviewed by more than 700 course raters from across the United States ... Read More »

Fall Color in the Florida Landscape

Alata cassia Candlelabra Cassia

PLANTTALK Mike Malloy mikemalloy@naplesbutterfly.com Summer heat is beginning to subside. and we actually have temperatures in the mornings in the 50s and 60s. The first thing to do is open all the windows and doors. The next step is to start enjoying all the cassias, or sennas, that begin to bloom this time of the year. Cassias are generally known for their fast growth. Let me get this over with now before we all get confused: Cassias and sennas are the same group of plants, but some people with too much time on their hands decided to change the name ... Read More »

Walmart Foundation Awards Naples-Area Nonprofits $125,000

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation hosted a Day of Giving around the state in honor of the 18 nonprofits receiving grants from the Foundation – totaling $485,000. The events will be held in Jacksonville and Naples. In Naples, five area nonprofits were recognized and awarded $125,000. The grants support hunger relief, reef restoration and education efforts across the area. The five nonprofits recognized at the Naples event include: Friends of Rookery Bay, Naples Guadalupe Center, Immokalee The Greater Marco Family YMCA, Marco Island Helps Outreach, Naples Jewish Family and Community Services of Southwest Florida, Naples The contributions to these organizations ... Read More »

Through the Eyes of Locals

Through the Eyes of Locals The Museum of the Everglades is excited to host “Through the Eyes of Locals”, an exhibit by various local photographers, Helen Bryan, Tommy Owen and Kathy Daniels. The museum invites visitors to experience the unique Everglades landscape through the lens of three longtime area resident artists and their view of the place they call home, its people and the amazing sunsets that should not be missed.  The exhibit will be on display throughout the month of November. The artist reception hosted by the Friends of the Museum of the Everglades, which is free and open ... Read More »

New Reception Desk Debuts at MIHM

Artist J.J. Stinchcomb, donors Bill and Karen Young and artist Peter  Sottong with the newly refurbished reception desk at the Marco Island Historical Museum. PHOTOS BY NOELLE H. LOWERY

By Noelle H. Lowery noelle@coastalbreezenews.com Regular patrons of the Marco Island Historical Museum will notice something different about the lobby when they walk in during their next visit. Thanks to a generous monetary donation by Bill and Karen, the museum was able to secure a new reception desk and have it refurbished by local artist J.J. Stinchcomb. The Youngs have been major contributors to the Marco Island Historical Society and its museum since it was built. “We felt like it was a little piece of Marco that was missing,” says Bill of the museum. As a result of the Youngs’ ... Read More »

Have A Musical Interlude at the Art Center

Local students perform at the Bach festival. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Submitted For those who love music, the Art Center has planned a new series of evening events called “Musical Interludes.” The first such evening will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 5:30-7:00 PM and features the Bach Ensemble of Southwest Florida. Lovers of the classics will not want to miss this exceptional performance. Tickets are $35 per person. “Music, as an art form, is meant to enhance the quality of life. Here is your chance to sit back, close your eyes and just relax,” says Rosemary Wick, President of the Art Center’s Board of Directors. Members of the Ensemble will ... Read More »

RedSnook Tournament Nets $72,000

The winning corporate team, RGM Capital LLC, included Ed Novinksi and Jason Krishnan. They are pictured with co-chairs
Wayne Meyland and Gary Parsons.

Submitted A record-breaking 45 teams participated in the 2014 RedSnook Catch & Release Charity Tournament that took place Oct. 24-26, generating $72,000 to support juvenile gamefish studies, water-quality research and estuary protection conducted by Conservancy of Southwest Florida. Wayne A. Meland of Morgan Stanley sponsored the event. Meland also served as event co-chair, along with Gary Parsons. The 2014 honorary chair was Oliver White, a rising star in the fly fishing community and passionate conservationist. “The mission of the Conservancy of Southwest Florida and their water quality work is a natural fit for the conservation work I do,” White said. ... Read More »

Celebrating the Past and the Future

Shell tool artifacts

By Noelle H. Lowery and Craig R. Woodward On Saturday, Nov. 15, the Marco Island Historical Society and the Marco Island Historical Museum will celebrate the next stage of their evolution with the completion of its newest permanent exhibit about Frank Hamilton Cushing and his famous 1896 archeological expedition on Marco Island. Dubbed “Paradise Found: 6,000 Years of People on Marco Island,” the ribbon will be cut on the exhibit Nov. 15 during a private donor reception, followed by a MIHS member preview on Monday, Nov. 17. It will officially open to the public on Tuesday, Nov. 18. It will ... Read More »