Vol. 13 No. 10 - December 19, 2012


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryHoliday of Treasures

There was fun everywhere Friday night at the Anna Maria Holiday of Treasures, from Slim's on Gulf Drive north to Pine Avenue and from there to Bayfront Plaza, businesses opened their doors, porches and parking lots to the visitorrs. There was the sound of cash registers also, as some businesses like Three Island Monkeys reported brisk business. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryMoratorium generates protest backlash

HOLMES BEACH – A parade of contractors and residents pleaded with commissioners not to impose a building moratorium or to change the effective date and make it shorter.

At the Dec. 11 meeting, City Attorney Patricia Petruff explained that she drafted the document based on commissioners’ comments at the Dec. 6 work session. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAnnual mullet run is on

CORTEZ –The arrival of a cold front and a drop in barometric pressure and changing tidal patterns provided commercial fishermen their first significant mullet run of the season last week.

“Monday night we had a pretty good hit – maybe 30,000 to 40,000 pounds,” A.P. Bell Fish Company office manager Karen Bell said Friday afternoon. “And last night we had 150,000 pounds. More...

Commission to implement LAR

HOLMES BEACH – After considering daylight planes and wedding cake setbacks to limit the size of new homes, commissioners agreed on establishing a LAR (living area ratio) as the best way to accomplish their goal.

Last week, they asked Planner Bill Brisson to prepare an ordinance establishing a LAR of .34. LAR is determined by dividing the square footage of the living area by the square footage of the land area of the parcel. More...

Car fire damages Key Royale house

HOLMES BEACH – Two residents on Dundee Lane in Key Royale are lucky after a strange incident early Saturday morning. According to the homeowner, who asked that his name not be used, they heard a car pull into their driveway around 3 a.m. A little later, smoke alarms went off, and they got outside where they found the car that had pulled into their driveway was on fire. Its driver was standing, watching the fire. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Santa makes beach landing

ANNA MARIA – It was a cloudy day, not like our typical weather, when Santa came ashore at the Sandbar restaurant, hugged a few kids, talked with parents and they all turned toward the restaurant’s gazebo to celebrate Christmas.

That’s how those kids from Head Start, the Children’s Academy and other programs got a start to their holidays at the Lawton Chiles Christmas for Kids. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Roser recreates Bethlehem Walk

ANNA MARIA – It was a walk around the block for the group of worshippers who recreated Joseph and Mary’s trek to Bethlehem while Mary was pregnant with Jesus, but it was laced with prayers and Christmas carols that warmed the heart. More...

Jury rejects lawsuit against cop

The jury struck down a $24 million lawsuit against the city of Bradenton Beach and former police officer Tim Matthews over an arrest he made on Sunday, April 20, 2008, at Coquina Beach.

In a ruling last week, the court dropped the lawsuit after the jury found no fact in the six charges against Matthews and four charges against the city by Lance and Veronica Lewis, who are brother and sister. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryLifesaver, candyman Joe Westerman

BRADENTON – Sometime between zero dark thirty in the morning and the time when they raise the flags at the lifeguard stations on Anna Maria Island, Manatee County Marine Rescue Division Capt. Joe Westerman suits up and gets to work.

The sunglasses and board shorts come later. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Guiding principles

I have always been a great fan of fishing guides. They are a great initiation to the local waters, and indispensable in foreign ports. Not only do you get the benefit of a guide’s considerable knowledge of where to find fish, but you get a lesson in the natural world as well. Most guides not only take you to the action, but they will show you some of the area’s most beautiful natural assets. More...

real estate

The real estate generation gap

I’m a baby boomer and proud of it. My generation has essentially controlled the economy from the day we were born and will continue to do so until the day all 76 million of us go to the great beyond. We have influenced everything from baby food to the Dow Jones average, but perhaps the area we have been most influential is in the housing market.

There is, however, just one little glitch in my generation’s powerful real estate position. It’s starting to appear that Generation X that is supposed to buy our homes either doesn’t want to or isn’t able to. This real estate generation gap is starting to be obvious as baby boomers who are nearing retirement age are looking to sell their homes. The problem is many of these homes are either not what Generation X buyers want, even if they’re at a stage in their careers when it’s time to purchase a home. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StorySkinny's celebrates 10 years

One of the reasons everyone loves the beach is its timeless quality changing daily, but never really changing. Just steps from one of Anna Maria’s classic beaches is another classic, Skinny’s Place in a building which looks exactly the same as the day it was built in 1952. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Estate planning challenges

Investment Corner

Unless Congress and the president are able to reach an agreement by the end of 2012, the federal estate and gift tax exemptions will roll back to the $1 million level from their present level of $5.12 million. In addition, estate tax rates are increasing, up to as high as 55 percent from the current level of 35 percent. With all the talk of the impending fiscal cliff of spending cuts and tax increases which will also occur on Jan. 1 if no deal is struck, there hasn’t seemingly been too much attention paid to the estate planning challenges faced by families. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryTis the football and volleyball seasons

The winter island sports season is upon us, and among the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, visions of touchdowns dance in heads. The Anna Maria Island Community Center formed 37 NFL Flag Football teams last week.

Boys and girls, men and women of ages five and up were drafted into leagues that were separated by age groups. The NFL Flag Football program was first introduced as a kids’ sport to the Island in 2006. The Center then added the adult program in 2009, and now is the largest program it offers. This year, 265 players will get their football fix on the Island. Forming the leagues are 14 adult teams, 6 14-17-year-old teams, 7 11-13-year-old teams, 8 8-10-year-old teams and 2 5-7-year-old teams. This totals 164 children ages 5 to 17 and 101 adult players. More...

Good news at Senior Games

Feasting on Fitness

As I write this, yet another tragedy is breaking about someone murdering children at an elementary school. Oddly enough, I didn’t even know about it until I posted a shopping-on-a-budget video on my book’s Facebook page and a commenter wrote, “How can we talk about shopping with this insanity going on?”

I had intended to write about my experience at the Florida International Senior Games last weekend. (Yes, there were athletes from outside the U.S.) I figure the media will be filled with stories about this horrible shooting and others from the past. But I only get about 200 words here, so I’m going to try and write a positive story about a positive experience I recently had. More...

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