Vol. 13 No. 12 - January 2, 2013


Island home sales booming

Real estate sales on Anna Maria Island continue to recover at a record pace and recently broke the 400 mark, according to Island Real Estate Broker and agent Alan Galletto, who keeps track in his monthly newsletter (www.alangalletto.com).

Galletto reports 30 properties were sold on the Island in November. Those sales consisted of 21 single-family homes, four condominium units, four duplex units and one buildable lot. That is a 25 percent increase over November 2011 when 17 properties closed, consisting of 10 single-family homes, five condos, one duplex and one lot. More...

Mike Selby: Person of the Year

ANNA MARIA – Judging by what people say about him, “Blessed are the peacemakers” could have been written about Mike Selby.

The former mayor of Anna Maria, who stepped down from office at the end of his term in November 2012, made a last-minute decision to run for election in 2010, when the city was experiencing difficult times. More...

A Night with Neil Diamond at Center

The Island Community Center, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria, presents a dinner and show, A Night with Neil Diamond, with impersonator Bobby Palermo, on Saturday, Jan. 19. Palermo has been voted America’s number one Neil Diamond impersonator and Tampa Bay Entertainer of the Year. More...

Fireworks to ring in New Year

If you don’t want to see the ball drop, get an Island attitude by watching the 19th Annual New Year’s Eve Extravaganza at the BeachHouse restaurant, 200 Gulf Drive N., Bradenton Beach.

The beachfront restaurant has a special indoors for those who want to pay the $99.99 per seat. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryRazorbills make rare appearance in Anna Maria

ANNA MARIA - Local birdwatchers are excited about the rare appearance of razorbills near the Anna Maria City Pier, but experts are concerned because the birds are far-removed from their natural habitat.

Razorbills are the northern hemisphere’s equivalent of the penguin. They typically spend their winters in the waters off coastal Nova Scotia and Maine and rarely venture further south than the Carolinas. More...

Method of charging permit fees to change

HOLMES BEACH – Commissioners agreed to ask the building department to work with the mayor on revising the city’s method of charging permit fees after a request by Commissioner Judy Titsworth.

Permit fees currently are based on project costs, and owners and contractors sign an affidavit regarding those costs. Titsworth said contractors used to bring in the contract itself, but they became concerned that others could see their contracts and began bringing in the affidavits instead. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryArtists’ Guild classes begin Jan. 7

The Artists' Guild 2013 classes and workshops begin the week of Jan. 7. The line-up begins with Nancy Law’s class, “You, Me and Acrylics” on Mondays from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. In Nancy’s class you will dive into mixing colors and painting for fun in a casual atmosphere. Cheryl Jorgensen will be teaching watercolor painting classes beginning Wednesday, Jan. 9. The title, “Watercolors: Putting Values into Your Paintings," aptly describes Cheryl's emphasis in teaching budding and experienced painters how to create vibrantly colored watercolor paintings. An award-winning artist and long-time Anna Maria Island resident, Cheryl has taught watercolor painting for over a decade and on the Island for the more than five years. The class will be offered Wednesday mornings from 10 a.m. to noon. More...

Islands, authors, wildlife highlight lectures

The Friends of the Island Branch Library will again host the Alice Taylor Reed Lecture and Travel Series beginning Jan. 10.

Named after a Friends volunteer who coordinated the program each season, this year combines the lectures of old with travel presentations. When Reed died in 2006, a sizable amount was donated in her honor to assure the program would continue for years. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story2012: The year in review

Anna Maria Island experienced the best of times and the worst of times in 2012, and tourism was behind both.

Booming tourism kept accommodations filled, with nearly 10 percent more people visiting Manatee County in fiscal year 2011-12 than in the previous year, creating a $565 million economic impact, nearly 13 percent higher than last fiscal year. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story The jig is up - the world’s best lure

Of all the lures in existence the jig would have to be my number one pick. The jig is one of the oldest and most productive lures known to man. With the plethora of modern computer designed lures, holographic patterns and life-like action, this simple design remains one of the top producing lures in an angler’s tackle box. If you have faith and vary the action, it's possible to elicit a strike from any game fish (fresh or salt) that swims local waters. More...

real estate

Flood insurance hot topic for 2013

Last week all children both naughty and nice were listening for the patter of little hooves on the roof and the great big "Ho Ho Ho" from the sleigh behind. However, in the new year their parents will be listening to the patter of rain drops on the roof or the rising of the tide or a combination of both.

I’m not sure of the statistics but my educated guess is that 90 percent of homeowners who will be reading this newspaper will also be paying a premium for National Flood Insurance. The flood insurance program was created by Congress in 1968 to fill a void since few private insurance carriers provided flood insurance. The insurance was designed to provide an insurance alternative to disaster assistance to meet the costs of repairing and replacing damaged buildings caused by floods. The program insures over 5 million homes most of which are in Texas and Florida. More...


Bistro offspring gets honor

The judges at the Golden Spoon are in love with Sean Murphy’s Beach Bistro and now they’re saying “Eat here,” when talking about his newest restaurants. The Eat Here Restaurants at 5315 Gulf Drive, in Holmes Beach, and 1888 Main St., in Sarasota, have won the Golden Spoon “Best New Restaurants in Florida” Award

Murphy was profoundly moved by the award. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Preparing for potentially higher tax rates

Investment Corner

The end of one year, the start of a new one is traditionally a time to reflect and also to look forward to new opportunities. As 2012 comes to a close, I am struck by the generally negative tone of the people we meet and talk to about the state of the economy and the prospects for things to improve, despite evidence that the economy is growing and has been gaining momentum recently. Of course, many are obsessed about what might happen with tax rates on both ordinary income and investment related activity. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAre you ready for some football?

The Anna Maria Island Community Center’s winter NFL Flag Football program begins this week. Thirty-seven teams will begin their run for the Center’s Super Bowl championship.

The league will begin this Thursday with the Adult co-ed league. The kick-off season dinner banquet has been canceled for Wednesday night Jan. 2. With the children still being on holiday break, a census was taken and too many players would be missing the annual event on that night. A new date is soon to be announced. More...

There's no place like home

Feasting on Fitness

If you’ve been curious about The Villages north on Interstate 75 between Tampa and Orlando, you’ve stumbled into the right column.

I had been hearing about The Villages for years. I had always heard that it was Disney World in a Celebration-type community of town homes and condos for the 55+ crowd…non-stop activities from sunrise to the next sunrise. Everything you might expect on a cruise without the water. More...

AMISUN ~ The Island's Award-Winning Newspaper