Vol. 10 No. 16 - January 13, 2010
Cold hits Island marine life hard
A prolonged cold spell has not only kept people off the beach, but has endangered and killed a variety of marine life.
Warm-water species, including snook, are particularly vulnerable to being cold stunned, said John Stevely, Sea Grant Extension agent at the University of Florida’s Manatee County Extension Office. More...
2009 record year for manatee deaths
A record 429 manatees died in Florida waters in 2009, 80 more than the five-year average of 349, and 12 more than the worst year in Florida history, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Ten of the deaths occurred in Manatee County, half from watercraft strikes.
Several other manatee mortality records were set in 2009. More...
Is there really a safety issue?
ANNA MARIA — Architect Gene Aubrey, a member of the newly formed parking safety committee is working to come up with a drawing of some possible mitigations for what some call the public safety hazard of the parking situation in the city’s residential/office/retail district.
The committee met for the first time on Jan. 8 with six members appointed by the mayor and each of the five city commissioners. More...
This chapel is one of a kind
CORTEZ – Some people saw an unusual sight early last week. It appeared to be a white chapel with a blue metal roof floating down the Intracoastal Waterway.
That’s exactly what it was, and it is now docked at the Seafood Shack while its new owners prepare to open a new addition to the area’s growing wedding industry – Weddings on the Water. More...
Police: Help us protect you
HOLMES BEACH – Speaking to a full house, police officials discussed the city’s recent increase in burglaries, ways residents could help police and programs available to deter crime at Thursday’s crime prevention forum.
“We are by no means sheltered from the criminal element,” Chief Jay Romine stressed. “You live in a nice area with nice houses, cars, stuff. Criminals don’t want junk; they’re going to target people like you. More...
City explores beachfront purchase
BRADENTON BEACH – Bradenton Beach wants to know how much a half-acre of what it considers unbuildable land west of Bermuda Beach condominiums is worth before it offers to purchase it.
That’s what the city commission decided after Florida League of Cities-appointed attorney Greg Hootman updated them on a lawsuit mediation meeting stemming from a dispute over whether developers can build condos on the beachfront land. More...
‘Our Living Shoreline’ to be examined
A legal challenge to actions of the Anna Maria City Commission has been turned over to City Attorney Jim Dye.
Dan Lobeck, a land use attorney, filed the petition on behalf or Robert and Nicky Hunt and Mr. and Mrs. Robert Muzzy and Pineapple Corner, LLC, the owner of 303 Pine Avenue. More...
Communities for a Lifetime to hold kickoff event
HOLMES BEACH – The Island Communities for a Lifetime committee will hold a kickoff event with activities for all ages from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23, at the Island Community Center, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria.
Last year, the three Island cities and the Community Center joined the CFL, a statewide initiative to make communities livable for everyone. The initiative, begun in 1999, assists cities and towns in planning and implementing improvements in areas such as transportations and housing. More...
Take a journey along ‘Beach Paths’ at The Studio
ANNA MARIA – The Studio at Gulf and Pine will host an opening reception for “Beach Paths,” a series of mixed media collages by Maro Lorimer on Sunday, Jan. 16, from 3 to 6 p.m. Suki Janish will provide music.
“It is the wildness of these paths that makes them so unusual,” Lorimer said, “especially in an area as developed as the Gulf Coast. The fact that residents and visitors approach the Island’s beach from countless access points via natural footpaths instead of pavement makes a big difference in the overall feeling of being here. It is rare – one of the most precious things about this Island – and I wanted to celebrate it in these pieces.” More...
Paths to the Gulf
One good thing about not being able to afford Gulffront property on north Anna Maria Island is that it forces you to walk some of the most beautiful paths in the country to access the beach from your more modest home a few blocks away. More...
Cold weather impacts local snook
When I first started to write this column it was 1 p.m. on Saturday, and the outside temperature on the Island was 39 degrees. I had just gotten off the phone with Anna Maria’s Captain Scott Moore, who was the first angler last week to raise the possibility of a problem with snook mortality during the upcoming arctic blast. When I spoke to him at noon on Saturday he reported that snook were still swimming in his canal and not showing any overt signs of being in trouble.
“I hope that the fact that the cold weather came gradually might help the snook winterize,” he had said. He had measured the water temperature in his canal for the prior four days and it had averaged between 49 and 54 degrees. More...
More happiness for Floridians
Last week, we started the new year with our happiness survey telling us that Florida residents are the third happiest people in the country. This week we can report on a few things that occurred toward the end of the year which is helping to keep a smile on the faces of Floridians. More...
German food is their specialty
It’s probably safe to say that January in Wurzburg, Germany is a touch colder than January on Anna Maria Island, something that certainly has not gone unnoticed by Brigitte and Wolfgang Jahn. Originally from Germany, the Jahns have lived in Florida and owned the Old Hamburg Schnitzelhaus restaurant in Holmes Beach for 10 years, providing authentic German food and enjoying authentic Florida sunshine. More...
2009: The year of the bond marketInvestment Corner
Most investors are amazed at how well the stock market did in 2009 after a dismal 2008 and first three months of 2009, a period during which many thought life as we know it may be ending. Well, life isn’t ending, but will probably be changed for a good while, as investors continue assessing their ability and inclination to assume risk in the pursuit of investment returns. More...
Frigid weather accompanies first week of flag football
Temperatures in the 30s and 40s forced players to bundle up and actually prevented a full week of games. The games and team pictures planned for Saturday were postponed because of a daytime high that reminded Island tourists of their hometowns, and were rescheduled for Jan. 30. The season kicked off on Monday with the NFL Combine, where uniforms and schedules were distributed and players could participate in fun drills similar to what professional players go through. Despite the cold, the first week off games for kids and adults went off without a hitch. More...
Thursday, Jan. 14
Lecture on birding and conservation by Jeanne Dubi, president of the Sarasota Audubon Society, Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, 10:30 a.m.
Friday, Jan. 15
Opening reception for Marty Noble, The Studio at Gulf and Pine, 10101 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria, 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Opening reception for all media art exhibit with Old Florida theme, Florida Maritime Museum, corner of Cortez Road and 119th Street West, Cortez, 5 to 7 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 16
Sarasota Bay Estuary Program kayak tour of Leffis and Jewfish keys, depart at Coquina Bayside, 9 a.m. Call 955-8085 to reserve.
Bridge Street Market, 107 Bridge Street, Bradenton Beach, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Caroline Whitmore will demonstrate how to paint watercolor seascapes, Island Gallery West, 5368 Gulf Drive in the S&S Plaza, 10 a.m. to noon.
Ginny Eitman will demonstrate clay techniques, Artists’ Guild Gallery, 5414 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 17
Opening reception for Maro Lorimer’s “Beach Paths” series, The Studio at Gulf and Pine, 10101 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria, 3 to 6 p.m.
Monday, Jan. 18
The Island Rockers, a band comprised of Anna Maria Elementary School students, will perform at the Manatee County Fair, outdoor Firkins Automotive Variety Stage, 3 p.m.
Wednesday, Jan. 20
Lecture on “The Nobel Prize: Concept, History, Politics” with Jan Skalny, The Studio at Gulf and Pine, 10101 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria, 11 a.m.