Vol. 9 No. 25 - March 11, 2009


County beach pier to be replaced

BRADENTON – If all goes well, fishers and strollers will have a new pier at Manatee Beach in eight to 10 months.

Manatee County commissioners approved Option 2 of three options presented to them at a special meeting last week. Option 2 is to remove the existing pier and replace it with a conventional pier with a 15-foot elevation at a cost of $1.5 million. More...

Bridge project finishes right on time

Quinn Construction finished the $11.5 million Anna Maria Island Bridge Rehabilitation project Monday, the 400th day of the project that was contracted to take 400 days.

Earlier, the company had said it might try to finish earlier to qualify for a performance bonus, but it still had some final details to take care of Monday. More...

‘Irish’ elephant returns to parade

The 11th Annual Beach Bistro St. Patrick's Day Parade will be celebrated on Sunday, March 15, starting at 4 p.m. featuring the hit of last year’s parade, Judy the elephant, and her handler, Mr. Bones. Also returning are the city of Dunedin Pipe Band and the marching bands of Southeast High School, Braden River High School and the Manatee High School Drum Line. More...

Landscape restrictions considered

ANNA MARIA — City officials are poised to pass an ordinance regulating what homeowners and business owners can plant on their property.

The ordinance, known as the city of Anna Maria Landscape and Tree Ordinance, mandates that at least 25 percent of the landscaping on residential properties where new construction or significant renovation is occurring shall be native species. For similar commercial properties, the percentage of native vegetation has to be 75 percent. More...

Swfwmd places county under red alert

CITY ISLAND – He’s still got it.

Anna Maria Island resident Bruce Matlack, 64, was the first-ever national windsurfing champion in 1972, and the first-ever world champion the following year, both titles he claimed on Mission Bay in San Diego.

On Saturday, he won the North American Senior Masters at the Island Style Classic regatta at the Sarasota Sailing Squadron on City Island, a nice feat for his 40th year of windsurfing. More...

Take a pass on passing on right

It happens every year right about now, the height of the tourist season on Anna Maria Island.

People get impatient waiting for a car to turn left from Gulf Drive into a shopping center or side street or parking lot, and they decide to pass – on the right. More...

Boater safety tips aid survival

Knowledge of a few safety tips might have saved three football players who were lost during a fishing trip on Feb. 28 in the Gulf of Mexico.

Free-agent defensive lineman Corey Smith, former South Florida player William Bleakley and Oakland Raiders linebacker Marquis Cooper were lost after they became separated from Cooper’s 21-foot boat off Clearwater. Another passenger and former South Florida player, Nick Schuyler, survived and was rescued. A search was called off on March 3. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Fifth graders in trouble over drugs

HOLMES BEACH – Five fifth-grade students at Anna Maria Elementary School are in trouble with school officials and possibly the law following an investigation of drug buying, selling and usage by students.

Principal Tom Levengood made the investigation public during a meeting with around 45 parents last Wednesday, March 4, at the school auditorium. The school resource officer, Holmes Beach Police Officer Brian Copeman; Holmes Beach Police Lieutenant Dale Stephenson; and school Guidance Counselor Cindi Harrison accompanied him in front of the parents. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryDarcie drops in for a party

ANNA MARIA – More than a dozen relatives, friends and employees of real estate broker Darcie Duncan had to wait a little longer than expected for her to show up on the beach Sunday, but when she did, it was a grand appearance.

Darcie and her instructor, Bo Babovic, jumped from a small airplane and dropped gingerly onto the beach while dangling from a bright yellow parachute. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryHuge crowd enjoys Heritage Day

Hundreds of visitors took advantage of a warm sunny Saturday to take part in the annual Anna Maria Island Heritage Day held at the Island Historical Museum and Belle Haven Cottage on Pine Avenue in Anna Maria.

People danced to the music of Gulf Drive and Friends, shopped for antiques and crafts and succumbed to the delights of Three Brothers Barbecue and the grilled hot dogs and spicy boiled peanuts offered by the Historical Society. Privateers roamed the grounds dispensing beads and creating bouhaha. More...

reel time

Anna Maria Island Sun News StorySpanish mackerel: Harbingers of spring

Spanish mackerel are staged off Anna Maria waiting to invade Florida’s west coast waters. Captain Rick Grassett reported finding mackerel on the flats in Sarasota Bay a couple of weeks ago. Last week, I observed large Spanish mackerel being caught by anglers fishing the pass on the south end of Coquina Beach. The current cold front will undoubtedly send them to warmer and deeper waters, but savvy anglers will be on the lookout for them as local waters warm up. More...

real estate

Steps to being a successful seller

If you’re a homeowner who has been unsuccessfully trying to sell your property, maybe you’re thinking the words successful and seller shouldn’t even be in the same sentence together. However, properties are selling out there, and if you’re an owner who so far hasn’t been successful, here are a few tips that could change your luck if not your perspective. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryTake a ride at Island Scooter Rentals

One of the best things about vacationing on Anna Maria Island is that you don’t need to move your car from the moment you arrive. In fact, you don’t even need a car. The Island’s free trolley can get you anywhere you want to go, and if you need just a little more flexibility in your transportation, the trolley can also get you to Island Scooter Rentals’ front door. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

It’s really bad – right?

Investment Corner

I have been way too optimistic. I admit it. I didn’t see the extent to which the bursting credit bubble would impact our financial system and the stock and bond markets. Real estate price declines were easy to predict, what we like to call a no brainer, and I went on record warning of that pending disaster back in 2005. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Minors defeated by one run in back-to-back games

It was a busy week in Island baseball as players in each division geared up for action. Saturday marked the 25th anniversary of Little League Baseball in Anna Maria, with the season kicking off for youngsters playing T-ball and those taking on the pitching machine. There was an exhibition game in each of these divisions in the morning, while the Fun Day activities went on all day to entertain players and their families. Both games were a great way for the players to shake off their nerves, as it was the first time playing organized baseball for many players. More...


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