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Editorial 605

Missy Layfield - Editor

Good News and Kudos

Here at the Sand Paper, we think it’s a good idea to search out and share good news. Every couple months, we use this space to focus on the good things happening in our community and the people who make our Island a better place to live. Kudos go out to…

The Coast Guard and our Fort Myers Beach Auxiliary for their constant vigilance keeping our waters safe and providing education to the boating public.

Fort Myers Beach Fire District, Key West Express and the Lani Kai Resort for hosting blood drives, especially critical during the summer months when blood supply tends to run low.

Area environmentalists who let the South Florida Water Management District Board know that they opposed back-pumping polluted water back into Lake Okeechobee and eventually into the Caloosahatchee River. Sadly the SFWMD Board voted to move forward with the plan anyway.

Chef Craig Panneton and the Pink Shell Resort for hosting the Great American Chili Cook Off benefiting the Harry Chapin Food Bank. This third annual event of the Southwest Florida Chapter of the American Culinary Foundation brought pros and amateurs together and provided some unique and tasty chili for attendees and helped fill the shelves at the food bank.

The Legends of the Beach we’ve featured –Roxie Smith, A.J. Bassett, Tom & Fran Myers, Fran Santini, Jean Matthew, Terry Cain and Bruce Cermak for their contributions to our community and their graciousness in allowing us to share their stories with our readers.

Fish Tale Marina for bringing the Mobile Mammo Coach to the island, providing convenient health screening for local women.

Gavin’s Ace Hardware on their celebration of 25 years in business.

All of the community service organizations we’ve featured recently. We wanted Islanders to know just how many great organizations there are working to make our community a better place to live.

Beach Kiwanis Club that picked up half the cost of swim lessons at the Beach Pool this summer. It’s good to know that there are more kids on our Island who know how to swim due to their efforts.

Robin Curley, Lena Neroni, John Heim and all the participants in Hands Across the Sand held on our beach to bring awareness to offshore drilling and alternative energy sources as well as local conservation efforts.

Captain Robert DePuy who recently retired after 20 years of service with the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Eve Haverfield and Turtle Time volunteers. This has been an especially challenging year as turtles created a record number of nests on FMB, only to have Debby and Isaac wreak havoc with them. We’re all waiting to see how many nests hatch.

Fort Myers Beach Community Foundation and Keep Lee County Beautiful for hosting Coastal Cleanup this weekend. This annual event not only picks up, but also weighs and tracks the results so future environmental efforts can be aimed at reducing the amount of coastal debris.

Fish Tale Marina on awarding a scholarship to Vivian Gonring, en employee heading to Florida State University.

Volunteers who helped pack up Beach Library materials for the move into their expansion and temporary quarters at the former Friends of the Library Bookstore.

Organizers and participants in Spirit of ’45 events held on August 12 to honor WWII veterans.

Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce, Big C Events, Pincher’s Crab Shack, Sand Lovers and Holiday Inn of Fort Myers Beach—on creating a new partnership for the American Sand Sculpting Championship in November. There will be a single 10-day event featuring both single and doubles competition with over 20 Master Sculptors.

Alta Whipple, a local volunteer, for her steadfast efforts to provide home made laundry soap to Beach Baptist’s Choice Market for the needy of our area.

Mike Sippel, Deborah Giannantonio and Mark Alexa as well as those who contributed to the purchase of a new bike for Chester Rogers after his was damaged in an accident.

The Parks and Recreation Department and artist Mark Harris for coordinating the Seafarer’s Mural project, that has island kids painting murals on fabric that will wrap around the former Seafarer’s site.

Jim Rodwell of Friends of Matanzas Pass Preserve and Mark List for creating a QR code trail that will allow those with smart phones to view explanatory videos as they meander through the Preserve.

Volunteers and hosts for a number of benefits for locals in need. Islanders can be counted on to turn out in force to support one another.

Fire Chief Darren White on his appointment to Chief after serving several months as Acting Chief. The stability of having a Chief is good for the district.

Islanders who took Isaac seriously and tuned up their emergency plans.

Town staff whose post-Isaac cleanup efforts were hurried by the approaching Labor Day weekend. As usual, our beaches looked great for our holiday visitors.

Marty Rowe who turned 98 on August 5th and who continues to volunteer at the Kiwanis Thrift Store.

St. Peter Lutheran Church members who have already fired up their stocking stuffing efforts for the holidays.

Veterans Club of America for their annual picnic honoring veterans and raising funds for local veteran assistance efforts.

Organizers of the 8th Annual Fillet and Release Fishing Tournament this weekend at Matanzas Inn to benefit Hope Hospice.

Beach Publix and their customers who donated boxes of school supplies for Island kids at Beach Elementary.

Anyone who has volunteered, donated, hosted or helped in any way to make our Island home a better place to live.


Missy Layfield