Vol. 14 No. 16 - February 12, 2014


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryRod and Reel redo

ANNA MARIA – Without fanfare, the Rod and Reel restaurant opened its doors to the public on Friday, Feb. 7, for the first time since a fire damaged it four months ago.

The fire, which started near the stove, produced thick smoke, but few flames, as it burned inside the walls, but the damage was just part of the reason it took so long to get it back into shape. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAgreement to finish renourishment before county

BRADENTON BEACH – The Manatee County Board of County Commissioners was to vote Tuesday on a new agreement to have renourishment contractor Great Lakes Dredge and Dock continue covering our shores with new sand in Cortez and Coquina beaches to the tune of $5.75 million.

The agreement was announced at the meeting by County Administrator Ed Hunzeker. More...

Crime down in Anna Maria

ANNA MARIA – Mayor SueLynn is happy about the latest crime statistics for her city but the man charged with leading law enforcement in the city is not satisfied.

Sgt. Paul Davis said this is a good first year for him. There were 87 crimes reported in 2012 and 56 in 2013. Rape went from two incidents to zero, there were no robberies in both years, aggravated assaults went from four to zero, non residential burglaries stayed the same at three, residential burglaries went from 16 to 10, vehicle burglary went from 20 to six, larceny from 39 to 36 and motor vehicle thefts from three to one. More...

Cortez festival this weekend

CORTEZ – Wishin’ you were fishin’? Join 25,000 other fishing fans at the 32nd Annual Cortez Commercial Fishing Festival this weekend from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Seafood stars against the backdrop of the authentic, working historic fishing village, including the famous “Cortez hot dog” – fried mullet in a hot dog bun with cole slaw. More...

BeachHouse joins parking lawsuit

BRADENTON BEACH – On Thursday, Feb. 6, attorney Robert Lincoln, acting on behalf of ELRA Inc., the restaurant ownership group led by Ed Chiles, filed a motion to intervene in a 2012 lawsuit filed by (now Mayor) Bill Shearon, Tjet Martin and former planning and zoning board member Jo Ann Meilner. The lawsuit pertains to the beachfront lot south of the BeachHouse restaurant and its use for parking.

Lincoln filed the motion to intervene the same day he filed a complaint, on behalf of ELRA, alleging various abuses of power by Shearon. More...

Restaurant ownership files complaint against mayor

BRADENTON BEACH – ELRA Inc., the ownership group headed by Ed Chiles that owns the BeachHouse, Sandbar and Mar Vista restaurants, has filed a circuit court complaint against Bradenton Beach Mayor Bill Shearon alleging he threatened and tried to intimidate city employees.

The complaint says Shearon threatened and intimidated employees and contracted city officials, has attempted to install himself as a strong mayor in a weak mayor form of government and has misused his position to direct city officials and staff to take positions adverse to the BeachHouse and its ownership. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryBoard recommends part of Sandbar plan

ANNA MARIA – By a unanimous vote, the city’s Planning and Zoning Board (P&Z) voted to accept a modified site plan for the Sandbar restaurant without a new lot at Spring Avenue and Gulf Drive.

P&Z member Micheal Coleman recused himself from voting because of his ties with Sandbar owner Ed Chiles and the Pine Avenue Restoration project. More...

Whitmore honored by TDC

The Manatee County Tourist Development Council presented Carol Whitmore with a surfboard-shaped plaque on Monday for her service as chair of the advisory board to the Manatee County Commission.

Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) Director Elliott Falcione praised Whitmore for speaking her mind and for her honesty. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryHistorical Society shares Island history

HOLMES BEACH – AMI Historical Society board member Lynn Brennan shared her love of Island history with a full house of interested residents and visitors recently at the Island Branch Library.

“My parents bought land here on Oak Avenue in 1949,” Brennan told the group. “Since then, we have lived there as a second home. My husband and I built a home on Oak Avenue and moved here full time about a year and a half ago.” More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Manatee Chapter of CCA holds annual banquet

On Thursday, Feb. 27, The Manatee Chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) will hold its 15th annual banquet presented by Conley Buick GMC at the Bradenton Area Convention Center, One Haben Boulevard, Palmetto, Fla. An open bar, silent auction and raffle kick off the event at 5:30 p.m., followed by a steak dinner and live auction at 7:30 p.m. All money raised will help to continue CCA Florida’s conservation efforts. Auction items include: Exotic trips, artwork, Yamaha engines, Hell’s Bay skiffs, fishing tackle, locally guided fishing trips, and jewelry. More...

real estate

Navigating a sea of change

Did you ever have the feeling that you’re right in the middle of a sea change and maybe just a little nervous about what’s around the next bend? Well, it’s probably safe to say that Anna Maria Island and likely all of Manatee County is in the midst of a sea of change in the real estate market, which could make people both happy and unhappy, depending on the course you’re headed.

Last June, I wrote a story about the listing prices in the three cities on Anna Maria Island starting to go well over a million. At that time there were 56 properties listed at or over $1 million dollars within the three cities. The breakdown then was 16 properties in the city of Anna Maria being listed over $1 million and one in the $900,000s. Holmes Beach and Bradenton Beach at that time had 40 properties over $1 million and 12 properties in the $900,000s. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Does price matter if income rises?

Investment Corner

In the stock market’s run-up during 2013, investors started to focus in on rising prices as priority. In the first few weeks of 2014, with the S&P 500 down a bit more than 6 percent, investors are now focusing on declining prices and wondering if the good times are over. The short-term emotions of investing can swing quickly.

One thing we know a bit about at my firm is holding high quality businesses as owners, as opposed to trading stocks for short-term gains, which often turn out to be losses. When investing as an owner, several advantages are put on your side that I think are key to being a successful investor. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Mr. Bones Bengals bounce into first

The Sun sports game of the week was a Bengals and Broncos battle for first place in the 14-to-17-year-old Anna Maria Island Community Center NFL flag football program.

Entering Saturday’s divisional matchups, Galati Yacht Sales Bucs, Mr. Bones Bengals and the Feast restaurant Broncos were all tied for first place with a 4 and 1 record. More...

Healthy food can taste great

Feasting on Fitness

As a TV reporter ages ago, I used to get paid the big bucks (ha) getting all sides to a story and doing the research it takes. So this volunteer column is the result of my week’s experiences and what I can write in two to three hours time. I always hope to inspire and prevent needless suffering of humans and animals that occurs way too often.

It is my belief that in our area, it would be a huge financial benefit if we had more vegan restaurants. Really vegan restaurants.

Like the exclusively vegan restaurant Ionie’s in Sarasota. My friend, Carl Lovejoy, is the amazing chef there. Check out restaurants’ Facebook pages or websites to see what they’re serving. More...