Vol. 8 No. 51 - September 10, 2008
Shells closes Island restaurant
HOLMES BEACH – When Mary Ann Speciale and Andrea Smith, from Hair’s to You salon, walked to Shells for lunch Wednesday, they were shocked to find the restaurant closed and a sign on the door announcing the closing.
"We were so disappointed," Speciale said. "We ate there a couple times a week. They recently remodeled it and it was really pretty. I don’t think the employees knew it was coming." More...
Key Royale Golf Club to help Bridge the Gap
HOLMES BEACH – For the first time in its modern history, the Island’s only golf course is opening its links to the public for the Family Golf Tournament to be held on Saturday, Nov. 15, at the Key Royale Golf Club.
Registration starts at 11 a.m. and the tournament begins at noon with a shotgun start and it is open to all players, including junior 10 years or older, who possess their own clubs. The tournament is limited to the first 72 players to register. Enjoy the newly restored greens that were replaced by a premium type of grass over the summer. More...
FBI queries Island cities on GSR
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has requested records from all three Anna Maria Island cities on GSR Development Inc., city officials confirmed on Friday.
The Bradenton-based land development company, whose principals were Paul Galizzi ("G"), Steven Noriega ("S") and Robert Byrne ("R") according to court documents, filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the federal bankruptcy code two years ago. More...
Veterans memorial plan revived
BRADENTON BEACH – When a proposed cell phone tower for Longboat Key died, it gave birth to a proposed tower south of Bradenton Beach and rebirth to a proposed veteran’s memorial at the same spot.
Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore is the motivating force behind the idea.
"I want to put the cell tower on the mound in Coquina Park Bayside, where it was proposed in 2001," Whitmore said. "The money the county receives from the would would receive from the cell tower owner would pay for its maintenance." More...
Commissioner meets VP candidate
"With liberty and justice for all" echoed through the Booker High School gym in Sarasota, where Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Joseph Biden spoke on Wednesday.
With bleachers bulging and people with umbrellas lined up outside in the heat, the scene resembled a smaller version of the Democratic National Convention, lacking only balloons, confetti and Barack Obama. More...
Sentencing hearing set for Koenigs
Manatee County Circuit Court Judge Diana Moreland has scheduled a sentencing hearing for Mark Koenigs on Wednesday, Oct. 1, at 2:30 p.m.
Koenigs was convicted on Aug. 8 of shooting Holmes Beach businesswoman Sue Normand at her office, Island Mail and More, as she waited on him on Dec. 5, 2007. A jury found him guilty of one count of aggravated battery with a firearm and two counts of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer with a firearm. He could get life in prison. More...
Internet check scam returns
ANNA MARIA – An alert rental agent put an end to an attempted check scam involving an Internet inquiry.
According to a complaint filed with the Manatee County Sheriff’s office by Betsy Hills Rental Manager Alicia Conover, a man identifying himself as Harry Johnson from England negotiated with her to rent a property for a month for $7,141. He sent a cashier’s check for $13,697.32 and asked that she send the balance to a rental agent in New York via Western Union. Conover realized it was a scam and did not complete the transaction. More...
Another GSR land dispute arises
ANNA MARIA — Pieces of the house of cards that GSR built keep fluttering to earth, and one of them landed on the city’s planning and zoning board agenda.
The attorney for Horizon Bank asked the board to approve a vacation of a 50 by 100-foot piece of property just north of the brick Villa Rosa entrance road. More...
National magazine features Island project
ANNA MARIA – The September issue of Southern Living magazine has a three-page spread on the Anna Maria Pine Avenue Restoration Project in its People and Places section.
The article features Ed Chiles’ and Michael Coleman’s vision for the Pine Avenue corridor. More...
Rig light for exciting mackerel action
September is the month when Spanish mackerel invade Florida’s west coast waters. They can be found harassing massive schools of bait fish that have begun the fall migration into the inshore waters. Tampa Bay, local passes and the Gulf should be jammed with these voraciously feeding game fish. Look for them as they slash though schools of bait, showering them skyward, as seagulls and terns wheel overhead. More...
Tax swap amendment sinks
The Supremes have spoken. No, not the 1960s singing group, but the Florida Supreme Court. Last Wednesday the Florida Supreme Court dealt the final death blow to Amendment 5, commonly known as the tax swap amendment. More...
Rumors of manufacturing demise premature
The general consensus around the water cooler and at the neighborhood poker game is that the United States doesn’t manufacture anything anymore, and that this is a bad thing.
As with most consensus opinions about economic facts, this one is mostly wrong when the statistics are examined for what they really mean. There is no doubt that we have less people employed in manufacturing jobs as a percentage of the overall workforce. In 1987, about 16.5 percent of U.S. workers were involved in manufacturing. Today, that number is around 10 percent. More...
Golfing’s great at Key Royale
With new greens and other improvements, Key Royale Golf Club members are having more fun than ever in their weekly tournaments. With season coming soon, the ranks of golfers are down and the tournaments had proxies to even the score. More...
Storm toll high, but nests still hatching
About 25 percent of the nests remaining on the beach early last week were washed out to sea in the high surf generated by Tropical Storm Fay as she passed the Island’s Gulf shore.
“It could have been much worse, and we had a few bright spots," said Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch Director Suzi Fox. "We actually found some hatchlings alive when the surf uncovered their nests." More...