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PADLS Program 6 days ago, 08/27/2015 at 7:27pm
PADLS ProgramIn the Swim - The Florida Helps
Foundation PADLS Program

There is no question about it; knowing how to swim is a big asset in our water-centric community. For years, the local Kiwanis Club has helped fund swimming lessons for all the children in our town. It cannot be understated how important this is, given the many drowning accidents reported across the state every year. In fact, of the entire country, the Sunshine State has the highest rate of drowning accidents involving children aged 5 and under (see FloridaHealth.org). Perhaps even more dire, accidental drowning is the number one leading cause of death in the nation among autistic and special needs children. Fortunately, there are Fort Myers Beach-based organizations like the Florida Helps Foundation (FH). The brainchild of Founder and Executive Director, Mike VonPlinsky, FH and its many volunteers, sponsors and donors, are working to help tackle this problem with a wonderful solution - the PADLS (Persons with Autism or Disabilities Learn to Swim) program.


Kristen Nelson 6 days ago, 08/27/2015 at 7:03pm

Kristen NelsonKristen Nelson –
Taking a Permanent Vacation -
Bartenders of the Beach

Friendly Kristen Nelson has a personality as sunny and bright as the place she tends bar– Parrot Key’s open tiki bar on San Carlos Island. So friendly is she that on Wednesday afternoon, she agreed to become the second bartender profiled in our new series designed to introduce our readers to some of the island’s most creative cocktail creators who work long hours wearing many hats - therapists, matchmakers, taxi-dispatchers and occasionally marriage counselors - all while entertaining large groups of often impatient and demanding patrons for hours on end. But like all bartenders we’ve met so far, Nelson told us that it’s a job she’s grown to love and always will.