ALL THAT GLITTERS
In gold we trust?
Don’t get the wrong impression; I’m not about to give you a stock market tip that will change your life forever. But recently something very strange has been going on. Gold has begun to fall out of favor from the very souls who caused it to soar to unimaginable costs in the first place – namely the heavy metal market investors.
As a practicing goldsmith I handle, buy, sell and shape gold on a daily basis; I have gold dust under my fingernails. I bet the people who trade pounds of gold every day have never touched, let alone seen, the bullion that affects my life.
Gold affects others, but in my trade it dramatically affects me. Only in a different way, My birthday in March of 2008 was my day of infamy all the “experts” said. it would never happen… gold reached over $1,000.00 unbelievable! It’s been over $1,000.00 ever since.
The cost of the coveted heavy yellow metal has been a sore subject in my place of business for the past five years. It has become tedious for me to explain the dilemma in an intelligent manner to most of my clientele just why in the heck a piece of nice gold jewelry is so darn expensive.
In my opinion, from the very start, gold’s upward spiral had been an artificially inflated commodity, and interesting enough, investing in gold over the last eight years or so has not panned out financially as the investing moguls expected.
About half of the world’s supply of gold was tied up by investors who, a few years back, lost faith in stocks and paper monies. They then looked to gold that was a tangible, safe medium for thousands of years. It worked then, why not now? Anyone who thinks now is a great time to invest in gold… Nuts!
That ship sailed 10 years ago when gold was cheap. You’d have a better chance of making money by opening up an alpine ski shop on Marco Island. But years ago when that ship was waiting on the dock, the smart ones who could afford to buy large quantities of the shiny metal climbed on board. They bought it cheap, and dumped it when it hit a high of $1,896.50 on September 5, 2011.
Check this out… An investment of 100 ounces of 24 karat gold purchased in 2006 at $600 per oz., your cost would be $60,000. Wait five years and sell in 2011… A $180,000 return! Imagine the return the big guns got investing a couple million dollars!!!!
There is no other way to explain it; the investors’ greed caused the metal to skyrocket.
The other half of this planet’s gold was used by jewelers like myself to create fine jewelry and although it’s true value (cost) is artificially inflated it still is an important ingredient to jewelers everywhere. A goldsmith without gold is like a carpenter without wood.
So guess what is happening now? Not much! Gold hit an all time high of over $1,800 a few years back and even with a crippling economy, an end of days scare re-election, fiscal cliffs, and now a congressional impasse, gold has not performed as expected and predictions of costing $2,000 and higher I have yet to see!
In fact, the cost has gone down and its expected to go lower. As I speak it has been hovering around $1,300 for months now… not a very smart investment if you bought pounds of it at $1,800 per ounce.
A perfect example of large investors manipulating the metal market is when the price of gold exceeded the price of platinum. How in the name of Jove can a metal that is significantly scarcer than gold cost less? And why has the cost of silver plummeted? Plummeted to more than 50% than where it was a couple of years ago? I know lots of people now numbed who latched on to that shooting star.
I am convinced that when the investors finally decide to dump gold because it is a bad way to invest their fortunes, the price will plummet like a lead balloon. Hey, I can live with gold at $700 to $800 an ounce.
It’s a simple formula; when a goldsmith can afford to buy gold and make a beautiful piece that is reasonably priced, he or she is going to sell a lot of pretty jewelry.
Regardless of all the negative vibes of an unsure economy and a non-functional government, I have a significant amount of folks who enter my shop every day who would love to own a nice piece of gold jewelry. And not as an investment, but to just enjoy wearing it. Nice jewelry makes people feel good. And when people buy my jewelry that makes me happy!
There is a simple joy of presenting a special piece of gold jewelry to a loved one for a number of reasons, or just an individual treat to one’s self … unfortunately the current cost of gold prevents most from these scenarios from occurring.
But on a brighter note, not all jewelry is made of gold, or in many of my designs, in it’s entirety. I, for one, adapted to the madness and had to make concessions. There are still ways to create beautiful handcrafted jewelry without gold being the main ingredient.
Repairs and re-styling old jewelry has been keeping my shop very busy. Even now, before the deluge of what has by many predicted to be a great season on Marco Island. I am keeping a hopeful attitude that gold will continue to drop to a realistic level so I can continue to design and create the wonderful pieces my friends and customers expect of me.
A question from one of my readers:
Why was it when I wanted to sell some gold in Naples the price offered was considerably lower than I expected?
- J.M from Marco
I have been buying gold from the public for decades. There are many reasons for a disappointing pay out.
First is the actual price of spot gold at the time you are selling it. Gold can fluctuate up or down insanely on any giving hour of the day.
The actual karat of your gold is a big factor; expect to get less for 10 karat gold because it is only has about 30% pure gold content. 18 karat is 75% pure gold.
Where you go is the big factor, to put it bluntly, some places will simply rip you off.
Any place that buys gold is not doing it as a public service; they do it to make money. Ask around first; make sure the buyer is reputable and established – not a fly by night establishment. Just look at how many are not in existence today, here today gone tomorrow.
I pay an honest and fair price for the value of the gold, and my customers know I do. I even encourage the “Doubting Thomas’s” to shop around before selling their gold. Most come back and tell me they were offered hundreds less and sell it to me.
Another reason can be that you are selling pure gold bullion, this is where it gets confusing. Let’s say you bought a 10 once bar of pure gold in the early 80’s for $400 an ounce, plus you almost surely paid a handling fee -lets say it was 100 for the transaction. Your investment is $4,100. Now, thirty-some years have gone by, and your $4,100 investment is now worth $13,00! Pretty nice return!
Now you decide you want to dump it so you plunk down the bars at the local gold buyer and he tells you he will give you only $11,700. What?
Now here is where greed rears its ugly head. You won’t take a penny less than $13,000, and the gold buyer will tell you to take a walk. He simply is not going to give you $13,000 for $13,000 worth of gold.
Ten minutes after you walk out the door, a drop in the market could be a significant loss in his purchase. While true, a gain in price would benefit him, but not as greatly as a significant loss. Plus don’t forget the “handling charge;” no one I know considers exchanging a twenty dollar bill for two tens a profitable business transaction! So my point is $11,700 is still windfall for a $4,100 investment.
About The Author Richard Alan is a designer/goldsmith and owner of the Harbor Goldsmith at Island Plaza and welcomes your questions about all that glitters. Contact him at 239-394-9275 or email@example.comNote: There is an email link embedded within this post, please visit this post to email it.
I am often asked about how professional artists are able to let go of their creations and if there is great difficulty in the act of releasing the products of one’s imagination. The work of the soul, so to speak.
My response, for me personally, is always a healthy and hearty, “heck no!” And, while I’m in no position to speak for all artists (it simply can’t be done), I know from those I speak with and read about that the prevailing tennent is that the work we do today is leading to the work we do tomorrow; that the latter is always built upon the former, whether there is an apparent visual connection or not.
If we are not to become stale, lazy, contributors to the great substandard, then each new work becomes a challenge to improve. Consequently, the greatest relationship an artist will have with any given piece of work is in the actual creating – beyond that there is not much more it has to offer. It is the path to the next, hopefully exciting, destination.
Most actors don’t watch their own movies over and again, I doubt if many writers read their books after they’ve been published (well, more than once), and, goodness gracious, what in the world would I do with all those paintings if I kept them! To relish in one success is the best recipe for avoiding having another.
I am currently working on a bully of a painting and when it is done – and it will be done – I know that it will have been a challenge well-answered. Then it must be sold. We’ll skip the obvious point that selling our work means affording to pursue the lives we have chosen (or that have chosen us), the real point is that hanging on to one accomplishment is the perfect way to block the next.
After all, the Artful Life is always a work in progress; it’s a dedication to honing one’s capabilities, improving techniques, and advancing applications. It is not for the faint of heart, it is not for those with no interest in sharpening their focus, strengthening their skills, or those who have no interest in presenting something wonderful to the world.
One other tiny point: the pure sense of joy received when someone connects to your work and desires to make it part of their life… it is a connection that forms between two souls, and that is priceless indeed.
About The Author Tara O’Neill, a lifelong, award-winning, artist has been an area resident since 1967. She holds degrees in Fine Arts and English from the University of South Florida and is currently represented by Blue Mangrove Gallery on Marco Island. Visit her at www.taraogallery.com.Note: There is an email link embedded within this post, please visit this post to email it.
Fall, also known as football season, has arrived. And that means some of the best weather of the year is right around the corner for South Florida. “Chamber of Commerce” weather, as we like to call it in Naples. While our friends and relatives up north are battening down the hatches in anticipation of winter, soon we’ll be flinging open our windows and lanais.
One of the best known and first-to-bloom vines this time of year in Naples is the Florida Flame Vine. Look for a blaze of brilliant orange color on Goodlette-Frank Road, just north of Golden Gate Parkway. A personal favorite, and very popular with plant enthusiasts, is the Dombeya Seminole. The reason for its popularity will be apparent when you see its large raspberry-colored blooms, which will grace your yard well into spring. Speaking of Dombeyas, be sure to check out the magnificent Dombeya Wallichii Tree, which features downward hanging huge pink balls. If I had my way, you would see them both on every block in South Florida.
Panama Rose is another great fall bloomer that produces a flush of pretty pink flower throughout the winter I also like Euphorbia leucocephala, which features tiny white flowers that, when clumped together, resemble a big snowball. It smells great, too. Euphorbia leucocephala had been a challenging plant to find in recent years, but since being propagated, should be in good supply now. If an extraordinary orange-blooming shrub is on your must-have list, you can’t go wrong with Lion’s Tail. It’s a unique winter-blooming shrub and a magnet for butterflies and hummingbirds.
For a luxuriously fragrant garden, nothing compares to the intensely scented Ylang-Ylang Tree. You and your neighbors will know as soon as this elegant plant is in bloom. Petrea vines (Queen’s Wreath) will also bloom repeatedly for most of the winter, producing numerous sprays of gorgeous purplish-blue flowers. And, let’s hear it for the always popular Dwarf Poincianas. You can always count on a stunning display of either iconic red or yellow flowers from Dwarf Poincianas. Cape Honeysuckle will soon be putting on an exuberant seasonal display of orange, red, and yellow flower power. The only Frangipani variety that does not go deciduous is the Pudica. It features profusely blooming winter white flowers and makes a big statement.
For a tree that looks like it’s bursting with yellow fireworks, check out Cassia. It has, unfortunately, been plagued by a fungus problem for the past few years. Let’s hope this season’s Cassia has acquired some resistance. With the return of fall temperatures, expect Firespike to begin blooming soon. It serves as the official welcome wagon for returning South Florida Ruby Throated hummingbirds. Firespike comes in a variety of colors such as red, pink and purple, and delivers spectacular color during the winter months. The only exception is the native variety, which is almost totally deciduous in the winter. Native Firebush features vivid red flowers, while the Dwarf and Glabra varieties feature reddish-orange flowers. The latter is the best choice for winter color, and preferred two to one by overwintering hummingbirds.
And, of course, there are hardy Bougainvilleas. Available in a rainbow of colors, they are literally year-round blooming machines. Remember, the color is in the bracts, and the tiny white flowers are inside the bracts.
Here are a few more top-performing fall/winter bloomers you should check out: Coral Vine, Congea tomentosa, Shrimp Plants, Sweet Almond and Asian Snow.
Now, put down that TV remote. Pick up your gardening gloves. And, let’s kick-off a new gardening season.
About The Author Mike Malloy, local author and artist known as “The Butterfly Man” has been a Naples resident since 1991. A Collier County Master Gardener, he has written two books entitled “Butterfly Gardening Made Easy for Southwest Florida,” and “Tropical Color – A Guide to Colorful Plants for the Southwest Florida Garden”, and currently writes articles on various gardening topics for several local publications. Mike has planted and designed numerous butterfly gardens around Naples including many schools, the City of Naples, Rookery Bay, the Conservancy and Big Cypress. Bring your gardening questions to the Third Street Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings or on Thursdays at the Naples Botanical Garden where he does a Plant Clinic or visit his website, www.naplesbutterfly.comNote: There is an email link embedded within this post, please visit this post to email it.
By Monte Lazarus
“Captain Phillips” starts quietly enough. Captain Rich Phillips (Tom Hanks) and his wife (Catherine Keener) leave their Vermont home one morning. The Captain is off to Oman where he will take charge of a freighter, the Maersk Alabama, destination Kenya. The ship carries various goods, including relief supplies for those suffering in Africa.
Phillips is a by-the-book, firm New Englander, and he is aware of the threat of piracy as the ship must go past the Horn of Africa where Somali pirates abound. Two small powerboats chase the Alabama, but must turn back. One of them resumes the chase under the leader, Muse (Barkhad Abdi). Phillips takes every precaution, but to no avail as the ship is boarded and taken over by the four Somalis. The Alabama crew is unarmed and attempts to use fire hoses to ward off the pirates, but it’s useless. Muse assumes command and tells Phillips that he, Muse, is now captain. What ensues is endless, fascinating close-up action, as Phillips and his crew play cat-and-mouse to thwart the pirates.
What makes the movie so engrossing is the juxtaposition of scenes of the Somalis with what is taking place on the freighter. The Somali pirates are locals who live under the thumbs of local warlords. Some of the pirates are fishermen and others are just criminals. The huge ransoms they collect for captured ships go into the pockets of the warlords. The pirates get very little in this strange (to us) world.
From alongside the Alabama, to on-board, to aerial views the visual images are vivid. The interplay between Phillips and the pirates is compelling, as Phillips runs out of means to stall or prevent having the Alabama taken to Somalia. It winds up being a contest of a quartet of pirates against the U.S. military, particularly the navy and Seals unit. Eventually the force of the navy brings about an ending familiar to most of us who remember the episode.
Make no mistake. This is Tom Hanks’ movie. It’s doubtful that anyone else could convey the emotions and character of Phillips nearly as well. He goes from self-assured, controlled captain to a terrorized hostage aboard a pitching, uncontrolled lifeboat, attempting desperately to save his crew, his ship and himself. How he perseveres is a good story, brilliantly executed.
READ MY TIPS
Wow! Stu Woo of the Wall Street Journal just wrote one of the most provocative tennis articles titled, “How much tennis is played during a match?” Woo offers, “To add it up, we started the clock the moment the ball left a player’s hand for a serve, then stopped it the instant the ball hit the net, bounced for the second time or clearly landed out of bounds. If the call wasn’t obvious, we paused the timer when an official ruled the ball out or called a fault or let.” Even though Andy Murray’s US Open singles match lasted two hours and 41 minutes, the actual play was only 26 minutes or 16.4% of the time! If we take a moment to reflect, we need to re-think how we have analyzed epic 5-set matches.
For example, in recent history, we have witnessed numerous tantalizing matches: The Wimbledon classic as Nadal edged Federer; Federer sneaking by Roddick at Wimbledon when Roddick mis-played the high volley. In the last two Australian Opens Djokovic had to survive two of the longest matches in history as he defeated Nadal and then Murray. However, we were mesmerized; how could an athlete continue to excel in the sixth hour of competition? But now, after Woo’s insightful article, I have a completely different view. A six hour marathon is really a 45-50 minute physical encounter. However, to really put this Grand Slam match in the right context, we must focus on the mental demands of the long tennis match.
When two combatants battle for three, four, five or even six hours, it is the mental strain that is being tested. In other words, even though there is only 15-20% of actual play, the two foes must stay in the moment for the entire match or risk losing much quicker. So far, I have dedicated my attention toward the pro game but it is equally important to discuss our recreational players. Most doubles matches last about 90 minutes; how much actual tennis is being played? If we follow Woo’s earlier analysis, each doubles participant is playing for about 8-10 minutes!
Attention weekend warriors: If you were looking to drop some major weight, 8 minutes of exercise is not going to do the trick! We must concentrate our efforts off-court; tennis is a stop and start sport and we must learn specific exercises to build our endurance. Ironically, long distance running is not the correct approach; it may help shed pounds but could slow you down. My number one tip for serious CTA/USTA competitors is to consult a fitness professional and ask her to design a specific program to enhance your tennis game. The key is to build up the body off-court so the player is in great physical condition which will immediately enhance the mental game. Why? When a player is in top physical form, it empowers the brain. Now, the player will be able to practice for hours and continue to thrive in tense situations. There is nothing more impressive than to witness senior players who have dedicated their lives to fitness. I currently coach several 60 and over players who are in such amazing physical condition, they look twenty years younger. When the going gets tough in their 10-point Super Tie Breaks, these supremely conditioned players rise under pressure.
Tennis is a great activity sport but we cannot rely on doubles play only. The average points only last seconds; it is imperative to off-court train to enhance our skills. As Woo points out, ‘there is plenty of down time in tennis. Players take breaks at changeovers and between sets. They argue and change rulings (the new Hawkeye technology which allows players to challenge line calls) towel off and bounce balls before serving.” It is clear that an actual tennis match is considerably shorter than we ever realized. Take advantage of this new information and focus your energy on off-court training with a top fitness instructor. Good luck.
Doug Browne is the Hideaway Beach Tennis Director and the new Collier County USPTA Pro of the Year. Additionally, Doug has been the International Hall of Fame Director of Tennis this past summer. Doug has been writing a tennis column for the past fifteen years and welcomes your feedback.
By Mike P. Usher
The rainy season is finally over! The unrelenting clouds made it very difficult to do any stargazing this summer; but we can finally see stars at a reasonable hour so we are rolling back the clock on the charts to 9PM.
Tonight is one of the last chances to see a few summer – season stars before they drop into the Gulf of Mexico. Front and center is the not particularly well named Summer Triangle, (this being the middle of Autumn), consisting of the bright stars, Vega, Altair and Vega. Vega and Altair are close neighbors of our Sun being only 25 and 17 light years away respectively. Deneb is the outlier, being 2600 light years from us although the exact distance is rather uncertain.
How do we measure distances to the stars? The traditional method is to use parallax in a manor similar to surveyors. A photograph of a star is taken in January, for example, and another is taken in July when the Earth is on the opposite side of the sun. The star, if it’s close enough, shows a shift in position when compared against background stars. This shift, when trigonometry is used, yields the distance to the star. Such shifts are extraordinarily tiny and distances over a few hundred light years are very uncertain as a result. Fortunately, other methods exist but are thought to be not quite as accurate.
The Summer triangle encloses a section of the Milky Way that is rich with star clusters; feel free to scan the area with your binoculars. Your naked eye however will notice a dark gash through the area, marring the soft whiteness of the Milky Way. This is known as the Great Rift and consists of a large mass of gas and dust blocking the light of the stars behind it. A few stars do glimmer in this area, however these are stars between us and the Great Rift. The nearby Moon probably will wash out this area of the sky; it would be better to wait a week or ten days when the Moon will no longer be in the evening sky.
Comet ISON continues its nose dive into the inner Solar System. Depending on how it brightens I’ll either give an update next column or run the “buying a telescope” guide in time for Black Friday. Either way you will probably be getting up early that morning!
See you next time!
Mr. Usher is President of the Everglades Astronomical Society which meets the second Tuesday of the month Sept. thru June at 7:00PM in the Norris Center, Cambier Park, Naples.
By Coastal Breeze News Staff
Double the service, double the fun! Not your typical United States Postal Service motto, but that is the idea behind an additional postal counter now installed at the Keep in Touch contract postal unit. “We were approved for the addition and handled the necessary remodeling just in time for the holiday shipping season,” said manager Mike Held. “This means postal customers can get to the counter in half the time! More time for shopping and spreading holiday cheer!”
Co-owners Mike and Jiri (as seen in the photo) will still man the postal counter, while store employee Karin Hatcher will continue to handle card and gift shop customers. Of course, Betty Kimble will be personalizing her own line of unique greeting cards. What about Lucy? “Well, her role in the store is to keep the customers happy and she does a fine job at that,” said Mike.
Holiday Domestic Shipping Schedule:
First class Mail: December 20th
Priority Mail: December 21st
Priority Mail Express: December 23rd
Standard Post: December 14th
By Noelle H. Lowery
The Marco Island City Council is cracking down on absentee property owners, and during the October 21 regular meeting, city councilors took on three topics specific to the movement.
First, they hired City Attorney Burt Saunders to lobby for proposed state legislation that would return the regulation of short-term and vacation home rentals to local governments. Currently under development by Senator John Thrasher and Rep. Travis Hutson, the bill would repeal a 2011 law passed to open up short-term rental opportunities for property owners. The two-year-old law allows property owners to rent their homes with fewer restrictions in the hopes that the steady income will prevent missed mortgage payments and eventual foreclosure.
“The time is right to get this type of legislation moving because tourism is way up,” Saunders told the City Council. “The basis of (the original) legislation was to promote tourism and that is just not necessary now…. I think the timing is good to make a change so the city of Marco Island can without any question regulate short-term rentals.”
City councilors believed less regulation on short-term rentals has created a problem for long-term residents. “We are hearing more of single-family homes being rented out to a ‘family’ only to see four, five, six or more cars show up with a huge amount of people for a week or two at a time, allowing for loud partying, parking across sidewalks, parking on swales and just generally making it hard for the residents in the neighborhoods to have a quality of life,” explained Councilor Bob Brown in an independent interview.
Chairman Joe Batte agreed: “Short term rentals have seriously eroded the quality of life many of us came here for. ‘House hotels’ in single-family residential neighborhoods having transients and owners who have no respect for their neighbors continues to grow. Owners of these ‘businesses’ in residential areas must get the word that quality of life is important and obeying laws is their responsibility.”
To that end, city councilors also approved the first of a series of changes to the city code enforcement ordinances. This one strengthened the city’s ability to fine and execute code enforcement violations by broadening the definition of a violator to include the property owner. It will be particularly important when dealing with renters that violate the code. Prior to the change, if a renting tenant was issued a code enforcement citation, there was no leverage for enforcement because the renter did not own the property. “We are now holding the property owner responsible for the actions of his tenants,” noted Daphnie Bercher, assistant to City Attorney Saunders, during her presentation to City Council.
Every member of the City Council was on board with the change, hoping, as Councilor Larry Honig indicated during the meeting, that “presumably the owner will put pressure on the renter” to fix the violations without having to proceed to serious code enforcement action.
“This ordinance is a significant step,” Councilor Larry Sacher explained in an interview after the meeting. “There seems to be a direct relationship between problem renters and absentee owners that don’t seem to give a darn about the problems they are creating.”
This change — and others currently being prepared by Bercher — also may lead to the city filing more liens on properties and, when necessary, foreclosing on those liens. According to Bercher, Florida statute already allows local governments to foreclose on liens. This ability does not have to be written into the ordinances. She is hoping the changes she proposes coupled with this statutory right give the city the teeth it needs to cure long time violators.
Batte believe Bercher is on the right track. “I do see more liens coming,” he admitted after the meeting. “Perhaps this will send a message to those who violate our laws.”
Finally, council took up the question of a sidewalk ordinance already on its books but not readily being enforced. The ordinance requires property owners to maintain the sidewalks in front of their parcels at their own expense, but some councilors expressed a reluctance to begin enforcing the ordinance now. As a result, the question was passed on to the Planning Board for further investigation and direction.
Councilor Sacher, though, sees the old, crumbling, cracked and uneven sidewalks around Marco Island as serious pedestrian safety hazards. He was not happy that “a policy decision of council” was passed on to the planning board. “I think we need to get back to it and give policy direction to the Public Works Department as to whether or not they should be enforcing this ordinance,” he stated.
Still, days after the meeting and with distance from their decisions, some city councilors caution against regulating private property owners too much. Councilor Brown believes a balance must be struck between the rights of the property owner and regulation: “I think we need to be careful in that we don’t want government to intrude in our lives any more than necessary, yet it must protect its residents.”
By Coastal Breeze News Staff
When twelve year old JohnEdward Padgett-Wright asked if he could get his boating license, his parents thought twice and finally succumbed to the request. Of course, in the back of their minds (like any parent) they really thought, “Surely he is too young to pass; there must be age limits. He will find it too difficult and drop it. There’s no way anyone will give him a license.”
That is why Victoria Wright and Simon Padgett were taken aback when their son, JohnEdward, at twelve years old, not only passed the Boating Safety course, he did so with a score of 92 percent! He is now the proud owner of Boating Safety ID card and, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) website, THERE IS NO MINIMUM AGE TO OPERATE A BOAT.
In fact, JohnEdward can now operate a boat up to 44 feet! Victoria and Simon are proud of their son, albeit a bit apprehensive. They spoke with an FWC officer issuing his ID who assured them JohnEdward is perfectly legal to operate the boat.
During his quest, JohnEdward found the appropriate boating course online. He followed the various sessions online as required, putting in a total of about six hours of work.
What was the most difficult portion of the course? “I think the markers. Knowing what each marker means,” he said. It may have been the hardest part for him, but obviously, it really wasn’t too much of a challenge for JohnEdward!
JohnEdward’s hobbies include skim boarding, surfing, wake boarding and paddle boarding. His latest hobby? Obviously boating. He even took his parents out to Keewaydin on a recent weekend outing. They are beginning to see there might be some advantages to all this. “We’re proud of him. It’s amazing what he can accomplish,” said Victoria.
If he continues to educate and apply his learned skills, JohnEdward certainly has a bright future ahead!
Who needs a boater safety education card in Florida?
Florida Boating Safety Educational Requirements were updated January 1, 2010. This update requires boat operators who were born on or after January 1, 1988 to obtain a Florida Boating Safety Education Identification Card in order to operate a motorboat with ten horsepower or more.
The requirements to take an approved boating safety course and to obtain a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) issued identification card are the same, but the age threshold for the educational requirements is now based on whether or not you were born on or after January 1, 1988. For more information, visit http://www.myfwc.com/license/boating-navigation/
This Florida boating safety course meets the State of Florida’s requirement for basic boater safety education. When you successfully complete the course and exam online, you will receive a course completion certificate by mail and we will automatically report your completion to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for issuance of your Boater Safety Education I.D. Card if you are covered by Florida’s mandatory boater education law.
Florida Boating License
The state of Florida does not have a “boating license.” The FWC issued Boating Safety Identification Card is proof that you successfully completed the online boating course. This card is valid for life.
Florida Boating Course
This course is approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and is recognized by the United States Coast Guard.
The Box Office is open and tickets are currently on sale for the Island Theater Company’s production of Blame It On Beckett sponsored by Centennial Bank.
What really goes on behind the scenes in a major regional new England non-profit theater? Blame It On Beckett, is the clever, witty, comedy by John Morogiello, that gives a peek into all of the drama found backstage.
A wonderful comedy with heart and a message, Blame It On Beckett asks the question: how far are we willing to sacrifice our soul to get ahead? And once we do it, was it worth it?
The cast features : John Moulton – dramaturg, Jim Foley. Mai Puccio – famous playwright, Tina Fike. Jared Wagner – theater general manager, Mike Braschi. Abby Yetter – literary intern, Heidi Bishop.
Blame It On Beckett runs weekends from November 1 through November 16 at the Rose History Auditorium, 180 S. Heathwood, Marco Island at 7:30 PM, with matinees on Sunday at 2:30 PM.
Tickets are $20 and can be purchased in person at the Marco Island Historical Society Gift Shop, 180 S. Heathwood or Centennial Bank, 615 E. Elkcam Cr. They can also be purchased online at www.theateronmarco.com, by calling the ticket office at 239-394-0080, or at the door 30 minutes prior to each performance.
Group discounts are available! To reserve seats for a group of 10 or more, please call the Box Office at 239-394-0080 to make your reservations and receive 10% off on your order. Student groups receive additional discounts.
Opening Night tickets include the “Meet the Cast” Opening Night party following the performance. Show dates are: Thursday, Nov. 14; Fridays, Nov. 1, 8, 15; Saturdays, Nov. 2, 9, 16; and Sunday, Nov. 3 and 10.
Additional information can be found at www.theateronmarco.com/ or LIKE their page on Facebook at ISLAND THEATER COMPANY to stay up on all the latest news.
By Nancy Richie
The Public Works Department took to the waterways this past week to remove an entire coconut palm tree that was found floating near the mouth of the Roberts Bay entrance. With the entire 30 foot trunk submerged and just the fronds floating on the surface, it was cause for hazardous navigation in this area.
Mike Daniel, using the Public Works Carolina skiff, hooked the tree and pulled it to a nearby undeveloped property. With the help of Public Works Mike Chidester on the front loader, the tree was removed from the canal, cut into pieces for transport and disposed properly at the Collier County landfill. There was no evidence from where the tree originated.
As a reminder, no vegetation debris, including grass clippings and yard waste, should be disposed into the canal waterways. Please report waterway debris concerns to the Public Works Department at 239-389-5018.
By Kit Kitchen-Maran
It’s time again for the annual fundraising orchid sale held by the members of the Naples Orchid Society. The gym at the Moorings Presbyterian Church will be packed on Saturday, November 9th, from noon to 3 PM. All the plants for sale come from members’ own collections, donations from orchid growers throughout the state and from purchases made by a selection committee. Each year many different kinds of plants are offered—the variety is amazing.
This year’s featured plants include Brassolaelia Yellow Bird, which is a large orchid with clusters of 3 to 4 flowers on a spike. Yellow Bird blooms at least several times a year. Brassocattleya Maikai blooms around Christmas and produces large, lovely lavendar-pink flowers. These are fragrant at night. Brassavola Little Stars is also a fall and early winter bloomer and has a wonderful, strong night-time perfume. Schombocatonia Garnet Glory ‘Juno Beach’ has bright red-orange two-inch flowers in clusters. It usually blooms in May and the flowers will last for at least two months. Come early to get any of these!
Many hybrid and species orchids are offered for sale. Some will be specimen plants, large enough to be divided or used as display plants. Cattleyas, Dendrobiums, Phalaenopsis, Vandas, Oncidiums and others will be available. Most will be potted, a few will be mounted and some will be bare-root and will need potting. All will be healthy plants and certified pest-free by the Florida Department of Agriculture. Prices will range from $8 and up, depending on the size and type of orchid. Most plants are donated by members of the society from repotting divisions and duplications.
Raffle tickets will be sold to customers waiting in line until about 12:30 PM. At that time, three winning tickets will be drawn and the winners will receive lovely, blooming orchid plants. The tickets will cost $1 apiece or six tickets for $5.00.
Some plants will not be in bloom at the time of the sale, however, most are of blooming size and members of the society will be present to offer information about the care and growing habits of the plants. Many plants will have photos of the blooms available. Often, members will be able to tell you what color and how long blooms last on the plants. How-to culture sheets about each genus will be available as well. These leaflets are from the American Orchid Society and explain what each genus needs as far as light, watering, fertilizing, growing temperature and general care.
It is best to get to the sale early for the best choices. Other plants and orchid related items will be offered as well. Memberships to the Society ($40 for individuals, $50 for families) also will be sold and will be good through December, 2014. You can sign up at the sale for the popular and value-priced Orchid Culture Class (January 11-February 15, 2014, $50 members, $60 non-members, limited to 50 participants.)
Doors open at the stroke of twelve at the Baker Center Gym, Moorings Presbyterian Church, 791 Harbour Drive, Naples, 34103. Cash, checks and credit cards accepted. Admission is free admission. For more information about the sale, call 239-404-1916 or 239-775-5220. For more information about the Naples Orchid Society, go to www.NaplesOrchidSociety.org.
By Coastal Breeze News Staff
Lely High School held its National Honor Society (NHS) induction ceremony recently in a traditional manner. Principal Leslie Ricciardelli congratulated the students citing the importance parents play in their student’s academics. The audience learned a bit about each student’s future academic desires, as well as a quote liked by each student. The officers of the NHS were installed: Stefan Langebeeke, President, Colton Hail, Vice President, Antoine Gabriel, Operations Officer, Anna Isaroskul, Secretary, Joel Devariste, Executive Officer. Monika Lara and Sanya Prabhakar are treasurers, Fidencio Mireles and Gustavo Romero, parliamentarians, Santiago Ospina and Cassidy Penzo, historians and Morgan Dulski is the public relations officer.
New members were chosen for more than their academic accomplishments. Four traits were considered; scholarship, leadership, service and character.
New members inducted:
Seniors – Virginia Hackman, Jeroen Poelstra, Catherine Remaks, Javier Ruiz Campos.
Juniors – Alex Alas, Aydelis Aleman, Jessica Andrade, Miche Andre, Anna Bissell, Morgan Burke, McKenzie Callahan, Elizabeth Carrington, Johann Charelus, Bryan Cohn, Lourbiane Duverseau, Jordin Giles, Yanet Gomez, Beatriz Gonzales, Kenny Igarza Ajo, Erika Jacobsen, Kevin Lopez, Monica Lora, Lexie Lundquist, Lyndsay Mahoney, Lauren McCoy, Casey Mendel, Kaylee Owens, Navia Penrod, Jordan Rice, Maya Roux, Kevin Russetto, Jessica Simon, Madison Smith, Violet Sullivan, Christy Thorstenson, Xavier Vecchio, Anahi Vivar and Gage Wheeler.
Coastal Breeze News would like to congratulate each of you on your efforts and wish you the best for a bright future.
By Noelle H. Lowery
Margo Heidenreich is down right giddy. The Marco Island Charter Middle School Spanish teacher is gushing with pride over her student Madison “Maddie” Hopkins. The seventh grader recently won the state’s 2013 Hispanic Heritage Month Student Essay Contest. As one of three student essay contest winners – one elementary, one middle-school and one high school – Hopkins’ prize included a trip to meet Florida Gov. Rick Scott in Tallahassee and a Four-Year Florida College Plan scholarship provided by the Florida Prepaid College Foundation.
“I am really proud of (Maddie),” says Heidenreich. “We are rated the 20th best middle in the state. I really felt that somebody from (MICMS) should win. I felt in my heart that we had the potential.” In all, 15 essays from MICMS were submitted to the statewide contest.
Hopkins’ essay explored the importance of Margarita Esquiroz to Florida’s growing Hispanic community. An immigrant from Cuba, Esquiroz was the state’s first female Cuban-American judge. She and her family came to Florida in 1962 after Fidel Castro took over her home country. Esquiroz earned a G.E.D. She worked as a legal secretary, while attending Miami Dade College. She earned her Juris Doctorate from the University of Miami.
In her essay, Hopkins wrote that “outside the courtroom (Esquiroz) was very active in the Florida Association for Women Lawyers and the Spanish American League Against Discrimination. She was committed to achieving success for herself, but also showed a dedication to helping others along the way.”
When Heidenreich posed the assignment to her students, Hopkins was not sure what she would write about. “It took me a while,” she remembers. “I did a lot of research online.” Once she stumbled upon Esquiroz, though, she immediately felt a deep connection to her and her story.
Just like Esquiroz, Hopkins wants to be a lawyer and possibly a judge someday. She also is a hard worker, a good student and loves to read. She cares about others as well, helping her mom, Mary Hopkins, buy clothes and school supplies for some of her students at Naples’ Seagate Elementary School where she teaches art.
Most importantly, though, Hopkins also is an immigrant from a country who did not value her or the possibility of her contribution to society. Hopkins mother and father, Tom Bower, adopted her from China when she was about nine months old. Her biological mother put her in an orphanage after she was born. While Chinese cultural traditions value male children over females, the Chinese government also has a strict population control policy known as “the one-child policy.” These two tenets work against parents of baby girls and leave many feeling forced to abandon them.
In her essay, Hopkins wrote of Esquiroz: “Her story is my story. She offers me hope. I came from China with perhaps many of the same dreams she had.”
She continued, “Twelve years ago, I was a Chinese citizen in Guangzhou, China, in a country that offered little hope for me as an orphaned female. But, today, here I am with a goal similar to Margarita Esquiroz. I have the will to succeed and a great big American dream.”
Making that dream will be a bit easier now thanks to the scholarship Hopkins won. The Four-Year Florida College Plan prepays tuition, registration fees and local fees for 60 lower division semester credit hours as well as 60 upper division credit hours at a Florida college.
Hopkins is thankful to Heidenreich for offering her the opportunity to write and submit the essay. She feels it is important to take the time to learn about others and celebrate cultures and those who have left a last footprint in them.
“When you learn about other cultures, you learn about other people,” Hopkins notes. “We are all on the same earth. We should know.”
By Noelle H. Lowery
Bill Badger is a modern-day Renaissance man. An Ohio native, he has owned two small businesses and worked with his family. He loves the English language, writing and literature. He is cultivating a love of classical music.
In 2008, he also became a teacher. It certainly was not a stretch for him. After all, Badger’s bachelors degree from Ohio State University is in English Education. Still, he spent nearly 20 years building a plastic recycling company and then helping his father start and operate a battery testing business in his hometown of Genoa, OH.
This is Badger’s first year to share his passion for reading and writing at Marco Island Charter Middle School where he teaches sixth graders. Prior to that, he taught for three years at East Naples Middle School.
Badger found MICMS by way of the Greater Marco Family YMCA, where he headed up the Middle School Summer Camp Literacy and Math program. While there, YMCA CEO Cindy Love noticed something special about Badger. She mentioned it to her husband, George Abounader, who also is principal and CEO of MICMS, and he seized the opportunity to hire Badger.
“I accepted a position at (MICMS) over this past summer,” notes Badger. “It is proving to be the wisest decision I’ve made in a long time.”
Abounader agrees, and believes that Badger’s varied life experiences bring another dimension to his instructional methods. “Effective teachers build wholesome relationships with their students in order to successfully teach their lesson,” explains Abounader. “When Mr. Badger brings appropriate life experiences into the classroom, he develops wholesome relationships with and a readiness to learn within his students.”
For Badger’s students, this translates to success. “Mr. Badger affirms his students in many ways,” adds Abounader. “The tone in his voice and the words that he uses, as he teaches, combine to nurture his students. He has his students’ pictures and their accomplishments and goals taped to the window facing the hallway, so that people who pass by them all day long are able to see his students and what they have accomplished. If you are a student of Mr. Badger, you know that he believes in you and will do whatever he can to help you succeed.”
Coastal Breeze News sat down with Badger to find out a little bit more about one of MICMS’s newest teachers.
Q: Why middle school?
A: Middle school to me is the most critical time in a person’s life. They are still very impressionable and I can instill the qualities of a good person in them. Also, I think I will always be a middle school kid at heart. I can really connect with those kids.
Q: What three words best describe your teaching style, and why?
A: Confidence-building, patient and nurturing
Q: What are your goals for your this year at MICMS?
A: My goal is to get a gain on the FCAT out of every kid. As important as that goal is to make every kid a better person. I hope to instill many of the character traits in them that I received from my one-in-a-million parents.
Q: If you could have dinner with any five people in history, who would you have dinner with and why?
A: Any five of the great classical composers. In the last 4 or 5 years I have developed a great love for that type of music. I would really like to know the processes they used to create such full and beautiful music.
Q: What three words best describe you, and why?
A: Calming, I have a unique ability to diffuse potentially volatile situations. Encouraging, I can help people believe they can do whatever they set out to do. Decorous, somehow I always seem to know what to do and how to act in social situations.
Q: What one personal achievement are you most proud?
A: Getting that college degree. I started out kind of rough and took a couple years off, but found the wherewithal to accomplish it.
Q: Who is your favorite teacher from literature and why?
A: I think it would be Sydney Poitier’s portrayal of E. R. Braithwaite in “To Sir With Love.” That performance really struck home. I teach a really diverse group.
Q: Ann Frank once said that in spite of everything, she believed people were basically good. Do you agree? Disagree? Why?
A: Yes I do. I think it is within every human to be a good person. It is our surroundings that can change that.
By Natalie Strom
Pink ribbons were hung from the Goodland sign at the entrance of the curvy road. Dangling from the mangroves were more pink ribbons, leading right into the heart of downtown Goodland.
In honor of October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Stan’s and Salon and Spa Botanica teamed up on Sunday, October 19 to raise money for the National Breast Cancer Foundation. After hearing the news, The Little Bar, The Old Marco Lodge and Marker 8.5 also joined in on the “Pink Party.” A heartfelt thank you goes out to all the restaurants from the staff at Salon and Spa Botanica.
Twelve staff members from Salon and Spa Botanica set up stations throughout Goodland, happily adding pink hair extensions in anyone’s hair. For a mere $10, party-goers could rock a splash of pink, knowing all $10 would go to the Foundation.
The total combined money raised from the pink hair extensions, a 50/50 raffle, local restaurants and other contributors was over $2,000. This brings Salon and Spa Botanica’s grand total to nearly $3,000 to date. The salon also offered extensions at its Marco location.
The “Pink Party” down in Goodland was a fabulous success and all in the name of breasts!
By Howard Laskau
Marco Sportfishing Club
Marco Sportfishing Club’s “Hunt for Reds in October” got off to a great start early Saturday morning, October 12, as 40 anglers headed out to the Gulf and the 10,000 Islands in search of two prize-winning redfish.
The “Hunt for Reds in October” is actually two separate fishing tournaments held during MSC’s “Redfish Week.” During this week, MSC club members spend about as much time fishing as they do eating and drinking! “Redfish Saturday” which took place on October 12, involved teams of two anglers whose goal is to bring in the two largest “slot-size” redfish. Current FWC regulations define “slot-size” as between 18 and 27 inches.
This tournament was followed by Marco Sportfishing Club’s signature event…Redfish VIII on October 15 and 16. This tournament is a two-day event in which the anglers compete for individual, boat and team prizes in a number of categories.
Walker’s Marine was the primary sponsor of the tournament, and not surprisingly, Walker’s Coon Key Marina was used as the venue for the tournament on Saturday. Yamaha Motor Corporation and Maverick Boat Company were secondary sponsors of the tournament.
Anglers returned to the Marina at 2:30 PM on Saturday for the Hunt Tournament, and the live weigh-in started. Excitement built as each boat pulled up to the docks to unload their catch and have it weighed. Names on the leader board changed a number of times as bigger fish replaced smaller ones. When all the boats had checked in, the “Red Assassins” team of Captain Nick Milillo and Joe Varano came out on top with a combined weight of 8.46 pounds of redfish. The happy crew earned $500 for their efforts! Close behind, with 8.22 pounds of redfish, was Team “Cool Change” with Captain Keith Wohltman and Jay Jones. Third place went to “The Northern Boys” with Captain Dick Yeaton and Phil Madonia.
In the Redfish VIII competition that took place on Tuesday, October 15 and Wednesday, October 16, there were a total of 30 boats and 66 anglers. A majority of the anglers who fished in the Saturday tournament came back to try their luck in the two-day event as well. Over the course of the two-day tournament, MSC anglers caught a total of 93 redfish with a combined total length of 1,987 inches. Stretched end to end, those 93 fish would cover more than half of a football field! There were a number of noteworthy performances during the event… including a “trophy redfish” measuring 39 ½ inches caught by Dick Yeaton. Jay Jones landed a Redfish with eight spots, and in the “wildcard” category, Bobbie Ordija was thrilled to catch a 32” Snook and win top honors in that category. Team Knot-Head (Capt. Pete Arcidiacono and Steve Wainman) took the top spot in the two-person boat category as a result of Steve’s “legendary” performance in the last hours of the competition. After a disappointing Day One and a slow start to Day Two, Steve ended up with six redfish on Tuesday, to push his boat over the top to win their division with a total of eight redfish totaling 168 inches for the two days. In the three-person boat division Team Therapy (Capt. Chris Edgar, Kay-Lee Edgar and Fred Kouhi ) was the top boat with a total of eight redfish measuring a total of 167 inches.
The week was capped off with an Awards Banquet held at Bistro Soleil Restaurant. Chef Denis Meurgue prepared a feast for the hungry fishermen and their guests. As the wine and beer flowed, awards were distributed, and as anyone would expect when fishermen get together… many “fish tales” were told.
The Marco Sportfishing Club is a non-profit organization comprised of more than 350 fishermen, boaters and outdoor enthusiasts who live in the Marco Island, FL area. In addition to enjoying all the outdoor activities this beautiful Southwest Florida location has to offer, the Club prides itself in its ability to “give back” to the community. Members of the club are active and involved in the community and have been instrumental in organizing and staffing many events that teach local children the joys of fishing and good fishing etiquette. The events and organizations MSC has been involved with include the Marco Island Cub Scouts, Marco Island Historical Museum, National Estuaries Day at Rookery Bay, The Naples Kids Fishing Clinic, Goodland’s Birthday Celebration, Naples Botanical Gardens, and the Port of the Isles Kids Fishing Clinic. To find out more about the Marco Sportfishing Club, please go to their website: www.marcosportfishingclub.com.
By Natalie Strom
Mango’s Dockside Bistro celebrated its second birthday with a hog roast, bounce house and a dunk tank.
At $10 a ticket, the price was right for the all-you-can-eat buffet, including a smoked pig, beautiful fruit tray, fresh, puffy and tasty homemade shrimp chips, strawberry shortcake and much, much more. Kids had a blast in the bounce house, getting their hair braided and ordering fruit juice drinks at the “kid’s bar.”
Mango’s employees spent time in the dunk tank, including owner Lauren Feinman.
The party, food and fun activities were definitely a hit. With all the positive changes including a brand new menu, original and innovative sushi selections, a great team of chefs and servers, cooking classes for kids and adults and its parties and special events, Mango’s Dockside Bistro at the Esplanade will certainly be a treat for Marco residents and visitors for many years to come.
By Natalie Strom
The Newcomers Club of Marco Island has set a new goal: to create awareness regarding the importance of health and fitness.
The Newcomers Fitness group began last year and is open to all other interested groups or participants on Marco Island. While the club consists of only women, the ladies have been working towards getting their husbands involved as well. Man or woman, don’t be shy to participate in the free walk/run program.
The fun fitness program is geared around the annual Jolley Be Good 5K. The ladies of the fitness group are training to take part in the walk/run which begins at Veteran’s Park, heads over the Jolley Bridge and back. Whether training for the 5K or not, this is a great way to stay in shape, meet new friends, catch up with returning friends, and set a fitness goal before the holiday feasting season.
The group is for all levels of fitness. From beginner to expert, all participants are welcome. This even includes member Maria Lamb who is preparing to run the 26-mile New York City Marathon.
The group of Newcomer fitness lovers recently held their first walk/run date. All ladies, and one husband, moved at their own pace from the Porky’s parking lot, up over the Jolley Bridge and back. It was an impressive 2.5 mile hike for their first time back.
The next session will be held on November 7 at 4:00 PM and will take place in Goodland. Picked for its unique old Florida feel and historic homes, the quaint village is a perfect setting for a walk, run or jog.
After an exercise, what’s better than fine food and drink? Marker 8.5 will be the final destination to quench one’s thirst and sample the new menu.
Join in on the fun and fitness! For more details, call or email Luisa Maldonado-Stiers at 239-348-5880 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Natalie Strom
The rich history of Marco Island spans thousands of years, reaching as far back as the Calusa Indians. Then there were the early settlers such as the Barfields and the Colliers. As Marco continued to grow, much of the look of the land changed, providing developers and realtors the chance to create pieces of paradise for family after family.
Needless to say, maps, aerial photos and more were taken regularly in the early days as well as today. The Marco Island Historical Museum (MIHM) has strived to provide as much history as possible regarding the island’s growth. The latest donation by the Marco Island Area Association of Realtors (MIAAOR) has given the museum and the Marco Island Historical society a chance to learn more about the island and share it with the community.
The generous donation consisted of important photographs, films, and maps from the Marco Island Area Association of Realtors (MIAAOR). The donation consists of 369 photographs, five 16mm films, and several large contour maps of Marco Island development projects.
On loan to the museum since March 2011, the formal “deed of gift” to the MIHM was signed by Shirley English, CEO, and Gerry Rosenblum, President, of MIAAOR. Present at the donation were Shirley English, Gerry Rosenblum, Barbara Rosenblum, Realtor Member, Kathy Miracco, MIHS Board Member and Chair of the MIHS Archives Committee, and Austin Bell, Curator of Collections for the MIHS.
The photographs are comprised almost entirely of aerial shots of Marco Island, most taken in the early 1980’s and 1990’s, with some dating as long ago as 1952. The dramatic transformation of Marco Island is captured vividly in these 369 prints. The five films, however, remain a bit of a mystery because the museum does not currently have access to a 16mm film projector. With titles like “Marco,” “Natural Florida,” and “Marco Island – Get Away From It All – Have It All,” the films surely offer an important glimpse into Marco Island’s recent history. The MIHS plans to convert these 16mm films into DVD’s in order to view their contents and evaluate their suitability for public viewings and future exhibits.
The generous donation by the MIAAOR was received with sincere thanks by the members of the Marco Island Historical Society. The relics received are a dream for local historians and will be around for visitors to learn from for years to come. The MIHM and MIHS are truly grateful for the gift received from the MIAAOR.