Vol. 17 No. 8 - December 7, 2016


Privateers don’t want Maddox in parade

ANNA MARIA – The Anna Maria Island Privateers are not interested in having former Privateer Rick Maddox join them in the Christmas parade they are hosting on Saturday, Dec. 10.

Maddox fell out of favor with the Privateers in 2012 after he took the non-profit organization to court seeking ownership of a Christmas sleigh that was mounted to a boat trailer and used as a parade float. In 2014, Maddox was awarded ownership of the float, and the Privateer’s were ordered to pay his attorney fees as well.

In June, 2015, the Privateers unveiled a new sleigh-themed float built by the father and son team of Warren and Tim Klaus. Last week, Maddox appealed to the city of Anna Maria to intervene on his behalf.

On Thursday, Dec. 8, the city commission will review the special event permit previously issued to the Privateers for the parade that is scheduled to leave from Bayfront Park in Anna Maria at 10 a.m. and then travel south through Holmes Beach and Bradenton Beach. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryWard 2 seat is now in the cards

BRADENTON BEACH – After two attempts, the four sitting city commissioners remained deadlocked as to who would fill the vacant Ward 2 commission seat, so a cutting of the cards will take place at city hall at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 13.

The two potential appointees, Marilyn Maro and Anne Leister, will cut a deck of cards, with Maro going first. The candidate who cuts the highest card will assume the commission seat formerly held by Commissioner Ed Straight and they will serve the remainder of the two-year term that expires in November, 2018.

The city charter provides for this contingency and states, “If a majority of the commissioners are unable to fill a vacancy after two meetings, then the successor shall be chosen by lot by the city clerk from the nominees proposed.”

Chosen by lot means the vacancy is filled by a game of chance, as was the case when cards were cut to decide the tied mayor’s race in 2015, in a ceremony conducted by Supervisor of Elections Mike Bennett. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryPine Avenue to close for Friday night fest

ANNA MARIA – Pine Avenue will be closed to vehicular traffic during the holiday festivities taking place in Anna Maria on Friday, Dec. 9, from 5:30 p.m. until approximately 9 p.m.

The roadway will be closed from just beyond the Roser Memorial Community Church up to Gulf Drive.

The street closing will coincide with the Anna Maria Holiday Open House being sponsored by the Anna Maria Island Historical Society and the Anna Maria Island Sun. Those who stroll up and down Pine Avenue during the open house will be treated to light snacks and musical entertainment while visiting the local businesses. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryChristmas coming to Bridge Street

The annual Christmas on Bridge Street event taking place in Bradenton Beach on Saturday, Dec. 17, will feature “an epic hot chocolate bar,” according to Sea-renity Spa owner and Bridge Street Merchants volunteer Amanda Escobio.

Christmas on Bridge Street will begin at 4:30 p.m. and continue until approximately 8:30 p.m. Occurring in the vacant lot at 107 Bridge Street, this free evening of holiday entertainment will also include the tallest Christmas tree on the Island; Santa and his sleigh; and The Dickens Carolers singing and telling stories while adorned in Dickens-era costumes. The Dickens Carolers will perform at 6 and 7 p.m.

Island musicians Russ and Brandi Adams will perform acoustically throughout the evening and the children’s chorus from the Rowlett Academy in Bradenton will perform at 5 p.m.

Special sales will be offered by the participating retailers up and down Bridge Street and there will also be a special Outdoor Holiday Market taking place that night. Those interested in vendor space can contact Melissa Enders at 215-906-0668. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Commission seeks ban on dispensaries

BRADENTON BEACH – City Commissioners have directed City Attorney Ricinda Perry to prepare an ordinance that would ban medical marijuana dispensaries and growing facilities in Bradenton Beach for the foreseeable future.

This decision was reached by the four sitting commission members during the Thursday, Dec. 1, meeting. Newly-elected Commissioner John Chappie urged the commission to discard the six-month moratorium on dispensaries discussed by the previous commission on Nov. 17.

“I was not sitting up here at the last commission meeting when the last direction was given,” Chappie said in regard to the marijuana moratorium ordinance Perry was asked to prepare for last week’s meeting.

“My feeling is just say no. Then whatever the state does, we can come back and establish some ordinances. I don’t see any reason city tax dollars and staff time should be used analyzing and reviewing whether we want dispensing places here in Bradenton Beach,” Chappie said. More...

Center board discusses finances

ANNA MARIA – Treasurer Jim Froeschle told the board of directors that four factors contributed to The Center losing $34,000 in October and $141,000 year to date.

Froeschle said there are great improvements with programs being added and the range and quality of those programs, and participation is strong, but the revenue has not increased due to the all-inclusive membership.

“People are learning what membership to buy to get the best value,” he said. “The people using The Center are getting enormous value, but the program fees are not rising to the extent we had hoped.

“Participation levels are up but people are doing it as a member, so they pay $5 instead of $90 or $120. It’s living with the new fee structure we have and figuring out how to market that.” More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryVacation rental workshops pending

BRADENTON BEACH – The city commission and City Planner Alan Garrett have requested as many as four commission workshops to be scheduled for the review and discussion of the Planning and Zoning Board’s recommended vacation rental regulations.

The recommended regulations are being referred to as the Transient Public Lodging Establishment (TPLE) ordinance.

The scheduling request was made at the Dec. 1, commission meeting. During that meeting, no substantive discussion took place on the actual content of the proposed TPLE ordinance.

The planning board originally recommended a vacation rental occupancy limit of two people per bedroom plus two additional guests. On Nov. 30, the planning board voted 3-2 in favor of making an additional recommendation to the commission for an eight-person occupancy limit on new vacation rental units or existing structures converted to vacation rentals after the TPLE ordinance is enacted. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Mayor and commissioners sworn in

ANNA MARIA – Mayor Dan Murphy and Commissioners Brian Seymour and Nancy Yetter were sworn into office during the organizational meeting that preceded the Nov. 30 city commission meeting.

The swearing in ceremonies were conducted by City Clerk LeAnne Addy.

When being sworn in separately, Seymour, Yetter and Murphy each said, “I do solemnly swear that I will support, protect and defend the constitution and government of the United States and the state of Florida; that I am duly qualified to hold office under the constitution of the state of Florida and the charter of the city of Anna Maria, Florida; and that I will well and faithfully perform the duties of the office of city commission on which I am now about to enter, so help me God.” More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAMI native serves in Pearl Harbor

As the nation pauses to remember the attack on Pearl Harbor, which occurred 75 years ago on Dec. 7, 1941, the occasion has special meaning for an Anna Maria Island native, who is serving in the U.S. Navy in the very location that drew the United States into World War II.

Petty Officer 3rd Class Nick Tankersley, a 2012 Manatee High School graduate, is assigned to the Navy’s U.S. Pacific Fleet Headquarters. Tankersley is responsible for weapons systems aboard the submarine.

“I like that my job allows me to be an integral part of ship safety,” said Tankersley. "The pressure of knowing that the ship makes decisions based on my ability to do my job ensures that I perform at the highest level at all times.” More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAnatomy of a fishing rod

Every fisherman’s rod, be it a spinning rod, a fly rod or a casting rod, is constructed in a similar way and has the same basic parts. Have you ever wondered why one rod is more expensive than another and why? Here is a breakdown of the basic components of a fishing rod that should help you understand their construction, and why one rod costs more than another. This should also help you determine which rod is best for you.

A rod’s blank is constructed from a product known as prepreg. This material is impregnated with resin and wrapped around a mandrel, which is removed after the blank is formed, giving the rod its basic round shape. This blank holds the guides, ferrules, handle, reel seat and fighting butt.

Prepreg has fibers that have a unidirectional (straight) orientation. The fibers can be made of different materials including fiberglass, graphite, boron or Kevlar. Some rods are made (laid up) from a prepreg that has additional fibers that run around or at an angle to the unidirectional fibers. This gives the rod additional strength and influences flex, stiffness and affects its price. More...

real estate

Are you in style?

What style home is the right fit for you? Is it a ranch, a colonial, a Mediterranean, a modern, a contemporary, a cottage or any other number of designs? Or is the home of your dreams one that just feels right and has the perfect location? If you’re a stickler for labels, there are a few changes in the popularity of home styles that may surprise you.

In the state of Florida, you can hardly drive a half mile without seeing a Mediterranean style home. Obviously, Florida builders decided that the Mediterranean Sea was close enough to the Gulf of Mexico and Pacific Ocean to justify flooding the market with stucco walls, tumbled stone and wrought-iron accents. But guess what? The quintessential Florida Mediterranean home has fallen both in popularity and in value around the country in the past four years per Realtor.com.

Replacing it is the modern/contemporary home the value of which has increased 37.4 percent during the same time. Even the traditional Victorians and colonials have surpassed the Mediterranean in value between 14 and 19.4 percent. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryShoppers avoid the Black Friday crowds

The day after Thanksgiving signals the start of the Christmas shopping season, and for many years, it has been known as Black Friday. Large shopping chains open early on Black Friday and in recent years, on Thanksgiving evening.

Advertising is intense and the daily newspapers toss huge papers on yards, larger than Sunday editions thanks to the shopping inserts.

Black Friday is just another day to Island businesses in most cases, but that might change soon.

Pink and Navy, the boutique on Pine Avenue, started opening an hour earlier and offering discounts at a declining rate per hour, according to storeowner Janae Rudacille.

“It has been our busiest day,” she said last Friday. “This year I put it in my ad in The Sun and we’ve been busier than ever.” More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Reverse mortgages worth another look

Investment Corner

I have written about reverse mortgages over the years, at least twice here in the Sun. My advice was that reverse mortgages were expensive for the borrower, but in the case where a retired person or couple had run out of assets, using the equity in their home through a reverse mortgage wasn’t the worst idea in the world.

I’m bringing the topic back one more time because some changes in federal guidelines have made the reverse mortgage a more attractive option for those who are over age 62, that own their home free and clear of another mortgage and who are concerned about the possibility of running low on retirement income during their lifetime

Space limitations don’t’ allow us to go into a full primer on reverse mortgages, but let’s hit some of the highlights. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryTeam Planet Stone teen champions

As the kids on the Island get older, juggling academics, school extracurricular activities and social activities becomes increasingly demanding. For many of them who grew up on the Island, finding time to come back to the Island’s community center is on the list of priorities.

The Center is common ground, a place of comfort, bringing back good memories and forging new memories to carry on with them into the future.

Long-time Center youth Ava and Josie Alderson, Travis Bates, Tyler Brewer, David Daigle, Thomas Heckler, Bryce Higgins, Tres Maddox, Tuna McCracken and Michael Pears, most of which have played sports at the center since kindergarten, returned to The Center each week during the past three months to play soccer, as they have done for so many years.

Many of them are quickly approaching high school, but the passion for the game, enjoyment of playing with and against friends and the love of competition continues to bring the Island area youth to the participate in community center sports. More...


Turtles crawl to a record year

Sea turtles had a record year in more ways than one on Anna Maria Island, according to Suzi Fox, director of Anna Maria Island Turtle Watch and Shorebird Monitoring.

The record of 435 nests is higher than the next closest record year of 2013 by 66 nests, and higher than the 15-year average by 246 nests.

Why, especially in a year with two hurricanes and a severe tropical storm that destroyed 145 nests?

Mostly, it’s due to 34 years of Turtle Watch volunteers caring for turtles and educating visitors, residents and business owners, Fox told volunteers on Saturday at an appreciation luncheon marking the end of the 2016 turtle season. More...

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