Vol. 10 No. 12 - December 16, 2009
Nearly $1 million earmarked for city pier
ANNA MARIA — The city pier project got a huge increase in funding Monday as the Metropolitan Planning Organization voted unanimously to approve more than a half-million dollars in additional funding.
The additional funding of $588,999 will be added to the $371,025 that had already been granted for a transportation enhancement grant the city had coming as the result of a grant application written by JoAnn Mattick before she became a city commissioner. More...
Surfers lament 'twin piers' wipeout
BRADENTON BEACH – Surfers from Clearwater to Naples expressed anger, sorrow and disgust last week after learning in The Sun that the popular “twin piers” surf spot is likely to be wiped out in 2014.
“Why are we spending taxpayer money to take them down? Aren’t there more important things to do?” asked a frustrated Mark Pelham, of Bradenton-based NXTC Surfboards and frontman for the Anna Maria Island band Bootleg. “It hasn’t caused any problems in my lifetime. It’s our playground.” More...
Lighted Boat Parade Saturday
CORTEZ – Twinkling boats will celebrate a Florida-style Christmas at the Sixth Annual Lighted Boat Parade on Saturday, Dec. 19, sponsored by the Anna Maria Island Sun and the Cortez Yacht Club.
All boats are welcome to join the free event and compete for a $500 grand prize for the best-decorated boat. More...
Roser Food Pantry feeds Island hungry
The need is increasing, and the Roser Food Bank is getting requests for 20 to 30 bags of food a week, according to Bradenton Beach Mayor Michael Pierce.
“We are hoping things get better as the season picks up and people go back to work in the restaurants and hotels, but there are still a lot of people struggling,” Pierce said. More...
Dozens join Bethlehem Walk
ANNA MARIA – It is one of the most genuine events of the Island Christmas experience.
A crowd of well over 50 people joined in the Roser Church Bethlehem Walk, an annual event that takes Mary and Joseph around the block, stopping at several inns and asking for a room. At the last stop, the innkeeper always says he has no room because of the recent census, but he has a place out back with the animals that they may use. He walks them to the door of Roser Memorial Community Church. More...
Area churches offer holiday prayers
Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, there’s a church on the Island that can accommodate your needs during the holidays. Listing of the services.
Restaurants win recognition
Three area restaurants have earned accolades from Zagat and Fodor's restaurant reviews and Florida Trend magazine.
Beach Bistro was selected as the Top Restaurant for Food in the west coast region of Florida in Zagat Restaurant Guide's "Top Restaurants in America" 2010 edition. The restaurant also led the state for highest food rankings for the second year in a row. More...
Community Center honors supporters
ANNA MARIA – The Anna Maria Island Community Center thanked those who kept it on course this past year and those who especially helped steer it around the obstacles set out by the uncertainty of the recession.
It was an evening of cocktails, delicious snacks by the Anna Maria Oyster Bar and networking between private and public supporters. More...
Parade spreads joy on Island
While mainland children listen for a sleigh on Christmas Eve, Island children listen for the sound of cannons firing a few weeks before that.
It was time for the annual Anna Maria Island Privateers Christmas Parade and the pirates’ ship led the procession from Bayfront Park in Anna Maria to Coquina Beach. More...
Fishing in a winter wonderland
December can be one of the “hottest” months for fishing the waters in south central Florida. The fishing opportunities create an angler’s winter wonderland. Seasonal runs of Spanish mackerel, kingfish, bluefish, cobia, pompano and a host of other species make the holiday season a boon for locals and visitors alike. A week ago, I had the pleasure of experiencing some terrific action on big bluefish and pompano with my friend and Sarasota guide Captain Rick Grassett. More...
Trash – a thing of beauty
The world is full of trash, more now than ever, since civilization began. Everyone is constantly struggling to rid their homes of indestructible items that will not degrade naturally and remain in landfills for an undetermined amount of time. There is one man in Texas, however, who has found a way to make use of at least some of the stuff previously destined for the landfill, and he’s building houses with it. More...
Commercial real estate – crisis or no big dealInvestment Corner
Scary bear markets generally end with a reversal to the upside that catches most investors by surprise and creates a feeling of disbelief and doubt that the move higher can be sustained. Investors commonly look to headline news items like high unemployment and other systemic troubles and wonder why the market can move higher when the news still isn’t good. More...
Saturday, Dec. 19
Sarasota Bay Estuary Program kayak tour, Neal Preserve, west side of SR 64 east of Anna Maria Island Bridge, 9 a.m. Call 955-8085 to reserve.
Bridge Street Market, 107 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Bridge Street Merchants’ Holiday Open House, Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, 4 to 8 p.m.
Holiday Lighted Boat Parade, Intracoastal Waterway from Cortez Bridge south and back to points north of the bridge, dusk.
Sunday, Dec. 20
Anna Maria Island Community Chorus and Orchestra holiday concert, Handel’s “The Messiah,” Crosspointe Fellowship, 8605 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria, $20 per person, 2 p.m.
On going through Dec. 24
Island Holiday Boutique of local artists’ paintings, jewelry, and crafts, Sun House restaurant, 1111 Gulf Drive. S., Bradenton Beach, 5 to 8 p.m.
Horseshoe play is hot
One dominant team emerged from Nov. 4 play. The team of Jeff Moore and Jerry Bennett ended the days action with an unblemished 3-0 record. A battle ensued for second place with a collection of four pairs vying for runner up honors. In the first semi, the duo of Tom Rhodes and Norm Good squashed would be competitors John Nelson and Jay Disbrow, 24-12. In the subsequent match, the dyad of Sam Samuels and Norm Langeland narrowly defeated walker Steve Grossmann, 21-16. The closing match of the day was a teeter totter contest. In the end, Good and Rhodes squeezed out a victory with a final score of 21-18. More...