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Living & Learning

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ALL THAT GLITTERS Richard Alan Strong words, “I can do most anything,” not exactly like Nike’s catch phrase, which is “Just do it!” Problem with “Just do it,” is that you do it and fail or fall on your face, that can be a problem. Failure can cause you embarrassment, or worse, your money. But it is said: It’s better to try and fail than never try at all. (Or was that about the subject of love?) In my case, as a young learning goldsmith, I was instructed to “just do it,” the problem could be a tough repair or a ... Read More »

What Does “Back to School” Mean to You?

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RUMINATION FROM THE ROCK AND BEYOND Jory Westberry What memories do the words, “Back to School” tickle in your head? An end to goofing off and feeling so free that when the wind blows through your hair it erases any schedule you had? The time to play was paramount to even eating lunch or dinner when you were called; you dutifully looked apologetic when reprimanded for being late, while in your heart you wanted to keep playing forever. “Back to School” means many things to many people. For the retailers it’s a much needed lift after the sultry summer with clothing sales, ... Read More »

Am I a Bag Lady Yet? Don’t Let Short-term Risk Dominate Your Investment Strategy

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Ask The CFP® Practitioner Darcie Guerin Question: Do I need to worry about becoming a bag lady yet? Answer: This is the question a friend asked me on Saturday morning at the gym, while we waited for our class to start. Doomsday concerns aren’t uncommon, especially in response to recent market volatility and current political and economic events. Between our warm-up stretches, and cardio, I reminded my friend that there’s a long way between her and a zero, so the likelihood of becoming a bag-lady is quite remote. It’s easy though to understand why people feel emotional and frightened; just turn ... Read More »

Noontime Rotary Supports MICMS

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Pat Ettensohn (left) and Tarik Ayasun.

Submitted At the August 11, 2016 Noontime Rotary Club meeting, Pat Ettensohn was proud to present a check for $5,200 to the Marco Island Charter Middle School (MICMS). Each year the Marco Island Sunrise and Noontime Rotary Clubs hold a golf tournament as a joint fundraiser for their clubs. Traditionally, the Noontime Rotary Club dedicates their portion of the proceeds to MICMS. Rotarian Tarik Ayasun, who is also the MICMS board president, received the check on behalf of the school. For information regarding membership in the Marco Island Noontime Rotary Club, contact Pat Rutledge at prutledge49@yahoo.com. Read More »

Everglades Seafood Festival

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Submitted Everglades City celebrated another glorious Seafood Festival in February this year when an estimated 40,000 people visited this historic rural town, the first seat of Collier County. The organizers, the not-for-profit Betterment Association of the Everglades Area, are pleased that so many people from all over the state helped to make it a success and are distributing proceeds to needy causes in the local community. They are already planning the next Festival. Mark your 2017 calendars for February 10th through 12th. For information and to see snapshots of the 2016 event, see www.evergladesseafoodfestival.org. To become a sponsor, phone the ... Read More »

Olympic Golf

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ALL THINGS Golf Todd Elliott The 2016 Rio Olympic Games are finally here, and for the first time since 1904 golf will once again be a featured event. So beyond the usual fare of swimming competitions, track and field, diving, judo, gymnastics and many other sports less popular to the general American audience, golf will be part of the Olympic extravaganza on a world-wide stage. When the decision to add golf to the 2016 Games was announced by the International Olympic Committee, jubilation flowed throughout the world of golf. The decision, many of us felt, would help introduce more young ... Read More »

Crocodiles in South Florida

Photos by Bob McConville

STEPPING STONES Bob McConville Master Naturalist Quite often when I’m talking about dolphins on my tours someone will ask the question regarding alligator sightings. I am always happy to respond that gators primarily stay in fresh water or brackish water habitats, and then I mention that brackish and saltwater areas of South Florida are home to many crocodiles and that this area is one of the few where gators and crocs share the same habitat. Lots of visitors are unaware that we do have crocs here, but it is true. Found in Central and South America and specific areas of Mexico, ... Read More »

Busy Afternoon for First Responders

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by Steve ‘Stef’ Stefanides Mid-afternoon on Wednesday emergency personnel on Marco Island were dispatched to two unrelated incidents; one of which resulted in the death of roofing contractor on Marco Lake Drive and a lightning proximity strike at the south end of the island to a teenager walking on the beach. Units from Marco Island Police, Fire/Rescue and Collier County EMS were initially dispatched to Front Street on the island for a possible lightning strike. The actual location of the incident was on Marco Lake Drive and involved two workmen from a roofing company, one of which brought an aluminum ... Read More »

Election 2016: Learn the Facts Before You Vote

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More Straight Talk  Steve “Stef” Stefanides 2016 continues to be an election year that has Americans shaking their heads as to the choices they have at the ballot box. This year we will have the opportunity to elect office holders that range from the highest office in the land, in addition to candidates for some of the more local, state and federal offices which are up for election. It was Winston Churchill that said; “No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government, except all those other ... Read More »

Betty Kimble Shares Art of Calligraphy

Betty Kimble with her calligraphy students. From left: Gina Roberts, Anthony Cosentino, Gaby Porter and Mona Anderson

By Samantha Husted While some may consider it a dying art form, it seems that calligraphy has found its home on Marco Island. All thanks to artist Betty Kimble. Each year for the past 12 years that she’s lived on Marco, Betty has held a two-week calligraphy workshop in her condo. Space is limited and only the most serious of students need apply. This year, due to popular demand, Betty held two separate classes. The first round of students consisted of: Gaby Porter, Gina Roberts, Mona Anderson and Anthony Cosentino. “They all have their own style. I try to teach ... Read More »

East Naples Matters

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COASTAL COMMENTS Donna Fiala It’s amazing to see how quickly the Hobby Lobby is going up since it started coming out of the ground. It took a long time to get started, but now they are moving quickly. I wonder how that will work, now that there will be two shops with crafts and creative items to use for decorating and flower arrangements and holidays, etc. I believe the big difference is that Hobby Lobby is closed on Sundays, but Michael’s is open 7 days a week, and Michael’s is quite a bit smaller. I think there’s plenty of business ... Read More »

Critical Wildlife Areas

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By Charlette Roman State-designated Critical Wildlife Areas, or CWAs, established by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), are very important for the preservation of our local environment. These specified areas ensure that the most vulnerable wild creatures are protected for future generations. Because wildlife will concentrate in a CWA, we can protect large numbers by closing off a very small area. Marco Island benefits by having two CWAs. The Big Marco Pass CWA, which includes all of Sand Dollar and parts of Tigertail lagoon, was designated as a Critical Wildlife Area in 1988. This FWC-managed area protects shorebirds ... Read More »

The Wall Street Dollies: Investing in Friendship

Kathy Sullivan outlines the bucket list and challenges. Photos by Maureen Chodaba

By Maureen Chodaba Understanding the ups and downs of the stock market can be a challenge. The jargon itself can prove to be baffling. For 20 years, a group of Marco Island women have been meeting to learn about the market and do some investing of their own. The Wall Street Dollies are proud to be one of the longest existing investment clubs in Florida. The group originally started as a mini club within the Newcomers Club of Marco Island. Original member, Phyllis Marco, said, “Two other clubs said we would never survive. Here we are 20 years later!” The ... Read More »

Sailing Center’s Summer Program Ends

The MICSC summer camp participants in action. Photo by Mary Lee Cale

By Don Manley Rocky Cale is looking forward to the fall after another successful summer for the Marco Island Community Sailing Center’s youth program. “Our advanced class really took off this year, which is what we were really trying to achieve,” said Cale, the nonprofit’s president, said of enrollment in the summertime program. The Marco Island Community Sailing Center (MICSC) provides instruction to youths between the ages of 8 and 18 at the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. The year-round program, which operates from the Marco Island Yacht Club beach, also provides instruction to adults, including private lessons. For the ... Read More »

Marco Optimists Clean up in Orlando

Coach Jim Watt fires up his U10 team up before the big game. As always, he has their undivided attention.

Jake Watt’s Big Day  By Barry Gwinn Jim Watt is the volunteer varsity soccer coach at Marco Island Academy. He is the only coach the team has ever had. His daughter Olivia, now a junior, is a star on the team. Olivia has two younger brothers, Jake, at Tommie Barfield Elementary School (TBE), and Jonathan at Marco Island Charter Middle School (MICMS), both soccer players par excellence. Watt is national sales manager for a thriving family business, King’s Company (commercial lumber), which has now gone global. He is constantly on the road keeping his customers happy and signing up new ... Read More »

Feds Feed Families Food Drive

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By Laurie Harris,  Public Affairs Officer  Since 2009, when the U.S. Coast Guard began participating in the Feds Feed Families food drive, nearly 57.2 million pounds of food has been collected; more than 17.9 million pounds last year alone. The Feds Feeding Families was designed to help food pantries stock up during the slow summer months when donations are usually down. This is particularly true on Marco Island when season comes to a close, and many jobs are eliminated during the summer. To support the Coast Guard’s 8th Annual Feds Feed Families campaign, the Marco Island U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary ... Read More »

Iowa Hills Challenge 20,000 Riders

Start: Glenwood, Iowa with Team Lamb: (From left) John Lamb, 69, Charles Lamb, 72, Thomas Lamb, 24, and Bruce Lamb, 67. Submitted Photos

Submitted An ESPN sportswriter, Rick Reilly once wrote, “Iowa is so flat you can watch a train pull out for three days.” To flatlanders, a hill is an interstate overpass. But it is a myth that Iowa is flat. Each year, twenty thousand cyclists come from all over the world to Iowa to be part of the longest, oldest and largest recreational touring bicycle event in the world. This is not a race, but a non-competitive ride with all levels of riders represented; from Tour de France veterans to unseasoned riders, and plenty in between. Each rider who has done ... Read More »

Minto Communities Wins Ten Awards

Minto’s two-story, 23,000 square-foot Harbour Isle Beach Club presents luxurious amenities including resort-style pool and state-of-the-art fitness center. Wrap-around windows and glass doors open to views of Anna Maria Sound and the Intracoastal Waterway. Submitted Photo

Submitted Minto Communities was recognized with ten awards at the 2016 Southeast Building Conference presented by the Southeast Building Council (SEBC) in Orlando on July 29. Minto’s Grand Aurora Awards include Best Single Family home in the 2,500-2,999-square-foot category for the Mansfield model at Laureate Park at Lake Nona in Orlando, and Best Interior Merchandising Condominium in the under $1 million category for the Mariner model at Marina Walk at Harbour Isle in Bradenton. Five Aurora Awards went to Minto for the Beach Club at Harbour Isle in Bradenton for Best Recreational Facility, the Mariner model in Marina Walk at ... Read More »

Dying to Survive, Part I Coping with Heart Disease, Complacency, Indifference, and a Flawed Healthcare System

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By Roy Eaton Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. Over 25 million Americans have the disease and over 600,000 will die each year. Approximately 700,000 will suffer a heart attack during the same time period and over 350,000 Americans will perish. The most common form of the malady is coronary heart disease, CHD, often referred to as arteriosclerosis, a hardening of the arteries. The most common subset of arteriosclerosis, is atherosclerosis, a narrowing of the vessels that supply blood to the muscles, lungs, and organs including the heart. If one is fortunate and ... Read More »

New Beginnings, New School Year

Tommie Barfield Elementary dismissal procedures for the 2016-2017 school year. Submitted

By Don Manley The teaching and learning are underway and so are the clubs, sports and other activities that are part of the newly begun 2016-2017 school year. As always, the process involves that momentous and shared rite of passage for youngsters, the first day of kindergarten. It’s an experience that Jordan Carmignani of Marco Island can now chalk up in the “Been There, Done That” column. Jordan recently kicked off his school career at Tommie Barfield Elementary School (TBE), where he was escorted by his mother, Tracy Carmignani and his brother Steel, a fourth grader, on that oh so ... Read More »