Vol. 13 No. 51 - October 16, 2013
T-shirts fly as pier repairs begin
ANNA MARIA – Work has begun on the Rod and Reel Pier restaurant following the fire Monday, Sept. 30, that damaged the structure. Workers can be seen at the pier, where a gate keeps out people. Two storage pods are in the parking lot holding furniture and other items that would be in the way as they replace the walls that were damaged.
West Manatee Fire Rescue Inspector Keith Miller reported last week the cause of the fire was accidental as the result of radiant heat over time. The origin was located on the south side of the structure on the second floor inside the wall protecting the fryers. The heat caused the wall to decompose over time and spontaneous combustion took place the morning of the fire. More...
Concerns raised over note-passing
HOLMES BEACH – Mayor Carmel Monti and Commissioner Judy Titsworth were the subjects of scrutiny at the Tuesday, Oct. 8 commission meeting, when an anonymous citizen reported seeing Monti pass a note to Titsworth while the two were seated next to each other on the dais.
Following the apparent note-passing, another Holmes Beach resident addressed the commission and expressed concerns about a potential Sunshine Law violation and requested that the note’s contents be shared with the public. More...
Sun's dog costume contest Oct. 26
While Bing Crosby sang of a white Christmas, Anna Maria Island will have its own version – new white sand along its beaches.
Manatee County Natural Resources Director Charlie Hunsicker unveiled the timing of the project at the Manatee Council of Governments meeting at the Bradenton Area Convention Center on Tuesday, Oct. 1.
Hunsicker, who said earlier that the county was seeking bids for the project, said Great Lakes Dredge and Dock was the low bidder for the two projects that will cover all the beaches on the Island. Great Lakes was the original renourishment company in the initial 1992 project and came back again 10 years later. The dredge used in those projects was the Illinois, a 220-foot-long barge that cuts into the seabed, sucks the sand up and propels it to the shore through a pipeline. More...
Bayfest is a shopper’s delight
ANNA MARIA – When you walk down Pine Avenue during Bayfest Saturday, you’ll be treated to a variety of arts and crafts, gift ideas, home furnishings and items to remind visitors of their vacations.
Many of the vendors have been around for several years. Check out Rhonda Kay’s funny signage, the unique jewelry of Tide and The Moon, Cat Jewels and Island Jewels. Other vendors include Jessee, Egyptian, Scentsy, Salada Designs, Crystal Dreams, Debbie Designs, Angela’s Organics and Creepy Kool. More...
Delightful surprises in Island Players mystery
ANNA MARIA – As the new, plush, fire-engine-red curtain opened at the Island Players Theatre last Friday night, the stage never looked better. Stage designer Jan Van Wart made a beautiful setting for the action, which was set in 1964 on the outskirts of London.
As the lights went up, Heiko Knipfelberg as mystery writer Arthur Putnam was writing at his desk, and his wife, Julia, played by Silvia Marnie, lay on the couch reading. He asked her repeatedly if she liked what he wrote and she patiently assured him it was the best she ever read. More...
Pirate Ball tickets in high demand
ANNA MARIA – A long-time local family has sold five of the few undeveloped lots to a buyer known for developing rental houses.
The five lots, at 207 to 215 Magnolia Avenue, are located behind the old IGA, the commercial building that houses Ginny and Jane E’s, Body & Sol Spa, Island Yoga Space, Snips Hair Design and Island Yoga Space. The IGA building was not a part of the sale.
The lots belonged to Marie Franklin, John Cagnina and other relatives of the late Ernie Cagnina, who served as mayor of Anna Maria in the 1970s and ‘80s. More...
County parks, preserves to merge
The Manatee County Natural Resources Department and Parks and Recreation Department have merged to become the Parks and Natural Resources Department, combining the operation of county parks and preserves under one umbrella.
Merging the two departments, which shared responsibilities for beaches, boat ramps and other outdoor recreational amenities, will save about $250,000 a year, with five parks department employees terminated, including Director Cindy Turner, Manatee County spokesperson Nicholas Azzara said. More...
Commission discusses city pier tenant
ANNA MARIA – The man who owns the franchise for the city pier has written a letter to Mayor SueLynn regarding the city commission’s discussion of parking problems, prompting some criticism from city officials.
Mario Schoenfelder said if the city requires paid parking in most of the city but allows day visitors to park in the lot that serves the Anna Maria City Pier, the lot would always be packed by all kinds of visitors and only a few, if any, parking spaces would be left for pier visitors. He quoted City Commissioner Chuck Webb as saying, “The pier tenant owns the parking spaces under the lease and therefore should do whatever is needed to ensure their use for their customers.” More...
Kids ultimate winners in Center golf tourney
The Anna Maria Island Community Center held its 5th annual charity golf tournament on Friday October 11th to record numbers of golfers for the event. Golf Committee Chairman Jason Sato said, “It was an honor to host such a great event. We are very grateful for the support of the community, volunteers, staff and committee”.
With the help of a hard working committee, the Center is pleased to announce that the preliminary figures look like the tourney matched last year’s gross total of $26,000 for the youth programs and services at the Community Center. The golf committee was made up of volunteers Jason Sato (Chairman), Charles Bucky, Scott Eason, Jordan Pritchard, Jonathan Schneider, Jake Spooner and Center staff members Scott Dell, Ryan Hogan, Sharen Pittman and Sandee Pruett. More...
Fall fishing fantasy begins
October is one of the best months of the year for angling local waters. A plethora of species both migratory and resident are treated to massive schools of bait fish that have begun the fall migration into the inshore and nearshore waters. Tampa Bay, local passes and the Gulf can be jammed with these voraciously feeding gamefish. Look for them as they slash though schools of bait, showering them skyward, with seagulls and terns likely to be wheeling overhead. If you don’t see action on the top, don’t assume that there are no fish around. Either chum areas with structure or use a top water plug or fly to prospect. Captain Rick Grassett and I did just that last year in October and found some big Spanish mackerel over a reef off Whitney Beach. When we arrived there was no sign of fish or bait, but they were there. We had a fabulous time throwing top water poppers to mackerel approaching six pounds. This time of the year there are also likely to be little tunny (bonito), kingfish and possibly cobia over structure and haunting baitfish schools. More...
Strategy helps make the best purchase
Every war needs good strategies and the real estate war is no different. Even the definition of strategy - “a high level plan to achieve one or more goals under conditions of uncertainty” - fits real estate purchasing to a tee.
Last week we spoke about pricing strategies for sellers and the effect of potential buyers being “anchored” to a listing price and/or a special feature of the property. This week in fairness we’ll talk about buyer strategies and methods to get a fair price for a piece of property without being outbid. More...
Commissioner voices dissent during discussion
ANNA MARIA – If the city commission has its way, there will be no parking or stopping at the beach along Gulf Boulevard near a handicapped parking spot reserved for those wanting to watch sunsets.
The Anna Maria City Commission continued its discussion of parking issues last Thursday when Mayor SueLynn suggested they increase the fee for parking tickets and prohibit loading and unloading along the street ends at the beach. More...
End of year financial reviewInvestment Corner
Most people use the beginning of the year, perhaps motivated by New Years’ resolutions, to examine the state of their finances and investments. I suggest starting the process a bit earlier and the final quarter of the year is a good time to do so.
The final quarter is a great time to review the level of income you will achieve and the resulting tax liability. Estimating this now can help avoid a nasty surprise when filing tax returns in the early part of the next year. Making sure you’ve withheld a sufficient amount of federal tax from wages or paid enough in estimated tax payments may also help avoid penalties for late payment. More...
Unwavered and still Unbeaten
The Sun Sports game of the week was a thriller between the only two undefeated teams in the adult co-ed soccer league at the Anna Maria Island Community Center. It featured the 3-0 Florida Discount Signs and Wraps team against the 3-0 Sato Real Estate team.
The Sato Real Estate team struck first early in the first half. At the eight minute mark, Josh Sato picked up the ball out of bounds and threw it in to a sprinting Matt Plummer in front of the net. Plummer perfectly headed the throw in ball past the goalie for the pretty goal. 1-0 Sato Real Estate team. More...
Mystery girl on rust bucket fuels imaginationFeasting on Fitness
Sailing with only wind and my husband, Clarence, can’t be beat. Last weekend down to Sarasota was one of those trips that I don’t want to say too much about. Because if I do, all of the rest of the country will flee here instantly.
It may have been our best trip yet. We saw jumping and feeding dolphins in pairs along with mothers and babies in huge pods. There were so many. More than we’ve ever seen. They were jumping out of the water just like the show at Sea World, may they never go there. And if you haven’t seen the movie Blackfish, it is a must see. Very enlightening based on many actual news clips of the killer whales in captivity. More...