Vol. 13 No. 36 - June 26, 2013
City reels in shark fishing
HOLMES BEACH – Police Chief Bill Tokajer told Island elected officials last week that he has found two sections of the city’s code to address problems created by fishers along the Gulf beaches.
Representatives of three Gulffront resorts have complained to the city about shark fishing in front of their businesses. Problems include chumming in swimming areas, noise and leaving fish and shark parts on the beach. More...
Snake sighted on Island could be a boa
A boater reported seeing a large snake, possibly a boa constrictor, in a canal around 85th Street, Periwinkle Plaza and Archer Way last Friday.
The boater, who did not give his last name, called Anna Maria City Clerk Alice Baird to report it.
“He said it was huge, longer than six feet,” Baird said. “He said it was swimming in the canal. Snakes don’t normally like saltwater.” More...
Mainsail agreement reached
HOLMES BEACH – After nearly seven hours of negotiations at a hearing held Friday at CrossPointe Fellowship, city and Mainsail Lodging and Development Company representatives came to a tentative agreement.
The agreement involves reconfiguring two buildings, one on the spit and one nearest Sunrise Lane, and containing parking on the development site near the corner of Marina and Gulf drives. More...
Attorney defines uses for tourist tax
With an all-time high of 538,000 visitors last year to Manatee County, with a 2012 population of 334,000, people have been asking whether tourism resort tax funds could be better spent on something other than advertising for more tourists.
Record tourism has caused complaints from Anna Maria Island residents about noise, crowds, traffic and parking, and Holmes Beach officials have wondered about using resort tax funds to replace the demolished pier at Manatee Public Beach and to build a traffic roundabout rather than advertise for more tourists. Anna Maria officials have wondered about using the funds to repair the historic Anna Maria City Pier. Others have wondered about allocating part of the fund to education to pave the way for kids to grow up and diversify the county’s tourism-heavy economic base. More...
Enjoy independence – Island style
You’re stranded on an island paradise – by choice, of course – and you want to celebrate the Fourth of July. Here’s how to do that.
If you want to celebrate the night before, the the BeachHouse restaurant, 200 Gulf Drive N. in Bradenton Beach, will host a fireworks show starting at dark. You can gather on the beach or watch from the deck as part of a package that includes food, refreshments and live entertainment. Call 778-8709. More...
Newly purchased lot a blank slate for owner
BRADENTON BEACH – Jake Spooner, owner of Bridge Street Bazaar and The Fish Hole, has bought the vacant lot to the west at 107 Bridge St. with an eye to using it for parking, and eventually, a new retail shop.
The Bridge Street Market, an outdoor market scheduled to be held on the lot on Saturday nights through July 27, will continue as he investigates using the lot for valet parking, he said. Merchants on Bridge Street could share the cost of valet parking and validate tickets to make parking free for customers, but city permits, drop-off spots and other details need to be worked out. More...
AMICCO announces new board members
The Anna Maria Island Concert Chorus and Orchestra (AMICCO) announces its 2013-2014 board of directors, and artistic staff.
James Stolte is the new president; Robert Notari, first vice president; Leonard Murphy, second vice president and orchestra librarian; and the position of treasurer is open. More...
Wait is on for pier restaurant identity
BRADENTON BEACH – Prospective restaurateurs are anxious for the city to issue a request for proposals for the former Rotten Ralph’s restaurant, but may have to wait a couple of months to bid on the space at the city pier.
It could take two or three more city commission meetings before officials hammer out the details of the request for proposals, including how much will be required for minimum bids, commissioners said last week at a work meeting on the subject. The commission meets twice a month, with only one meeting in July due to the July 4 holiday. More...
Junior Achievement students graduate
HOLMES BEACH – Second-, third- and fifth-graders who participated in the Junior Achievement (JA) program this school year received certificates in their classrooms recently at Anna Maria Elementary School.
Junior Achievement Education Program Manager Jim Brown and American Association of University Women (AAUW) representative Sylvia Price were present along with Manatee County School Board member and attorney Dave Miner and Susan Cruse, of Gateway Bank, spoke at the ceremony in Sally Jackson’s fifth-grade class. More...
Tarpon on the fly
The first sign of our quarry appeared far in the distance, as two dark shapes highlighted against the brilliant white sand slid into slightly deeper water and began following an edge that led to the back of Captain Rick Grassett’s anchored flats boat. Standing on the polling platform, I was the first to spot the two tarpon. When I was sure that’s what I was seeing, I called out the direction and distance to Grassett, who swung his rod to allow me to point them out. More...
Time to to buy a vacation home?
It may seem counterintuitive, considering everything that’s gone on in the real estate market in recent years, but this may be the absolute best time to buy a vacation home. I don’t mean just because prices are down, but also because second home buyers’ outlook is up.
We’ve been reporting for some time that Anna Maria real estate sales are exploding, but it wasn’t until I read a Wall Street Journal analysis that I realized that we’re not alone. In fact, much of the luxury and second home market around the country is on a major upswing. More...
ETFs and ETNs – horses of a different colorInvestment Corner
Exchange Traded Funds (aka ETFs) and Exchange Traded Notes (ETNs) appear to be very similar when viewed as prospective investment vehicles by the individual investor. Some important differences may never come into play, but should be understood before investing your capital.
First, let’s review the similarities. Both ETFs and ETNs are easily bought or sold on any day the financial markets are open for business. In other words, they offer a high level of liquidity if you need your money for some other purpose. More...
Turtle Watch, police talk wildlife
HOLMES BEACH – Loggerhead sea turtles got busy on Anna Maria Island last week, laying 42 nests, and the second green turtle to lay a nest on the Island this year added one more, bringing the season’s total to 122, about 50 fewer than this time last year, according to Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring.
Next month, the season’s first nests laid in May will begin to hatch, and Turtle Watch Director Suzi Fox took advantage of the last few quiet days before the hatching starts to speak with Holmes Beach law enforcement officers about sea turtles and other Island wildlife, and how they can help protect them. More...
Island Pest Control - soccer champions
The Anna Maria Island Community Center’s 2013 adult co-ed soccer ended its season Thursday night with a premier performance by the number one seeded Island Pest Control team and the number three seeded Wash Family Construction team.
The first half of the game was dominated by great defensive play. The goal keepers were not very busy as the defensive wall in front of them held strong. For the Island Pest Control team it was an impressive defensive performance by Oliver Petereit, Sean Sanders and Max Gazzo with Frank Agnelli in goal. For the Wash Family Construction team it was a rock solid defensive performance by Kelsea Bachman and Erin Vogal with Aaron Parkin in goal. More...
Will they replace Paula Deen with a vegan?Feasting on Fitness
I posted that question on my “Eat Vegan on $4 a Day” Facebook page of 23,000 fans this week. The most popular response was, “Keep dreaming!” And so I do.
For those of you who don’t follow the Food Network, Paula Deen was a good ol’ Southern-cooking gal with a popular show who eventually disclosed that her constant reminders to cook everything deep fried with tons of butter gave her diabetes. Worse, she didn’t disclose this for a year and then began promoting an anti-diabetes drug that made her even more money. When all of that became public, many demanded she be taken off the air, to no avail. More...