Newsletter July 8 - 14, 2012

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Current news of interest of Naples and Southwest Florida.  Keeps you up-to-date with other postings or news and events about Naples
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 The Florida Keys - For those of you that have never been here before, the Florida Keys are a 106 mile long chain of islands that begin at the very bottom of Florida's mainland. They are often referred to as America's Caribbean.
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About 80 percent of Collier sea turtle nests lost in Tropical Storm Debby

XXXXXAbout 80 percent of Collier sea turtle nests lost in Tropical Storm Debby Of the 855 sea turtle nests reported along Collier County beaches, just 164 remain after Tropical Storm Debby submerged eggs and washed some away with high tides last week.

In all, it represents about an 80-percent loss. The final count from environmental specialist Maura Kraus with the county's Sea Turtle Protection Program was more devastating than initially predicted.

In Lee County, between 50 and 60 percent of nests have been washed over by the tides, but that does not mean they are all destroyed, said Eve Haverfield of Turtle Time Inc., a nonprofit dedicated to monitoring sea turtle nests on four beaches in the county.

"It's an arduous process finding out which survived and which didn't and we still don't know," Haverfield said.

Love of pizza leads to American Dream for Naples businessman In four years — not to mention a down economy — he has grown Cosmos Italian Cafe and Pizzeria from a restaurant with 26 seats and three employees to an 86-seat restaurant, a deli and 24 employees in season. He purchased the building Cosmos is in and rounded up tenants to utilize the additional units.

All by age 34.

  • Gov. Scott overstates cost of health care overhaul TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott expresses his disappointment about the supreme court's decision concerning the health care bill at a news conference on Thursday, June 28, 2012, in Tallahassee, Fla.

    The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld virtually all of President Barack Obama's historic health care overhaul, including the hotly debated core requirement that nearly every American have health insurance.

    The 5-4 decision meant the huge overhaul, still taking effect, could proceed and pick up momentum over the next several years, affecting the way that countless Americans receive and pay for their personal medical care. (AP Photo/Steve Cannon)Medicaid expansion.

    Gov. Rick Scott says President Barack Obama's health care overhaul will cost Florida taxpayers $1.9 billion a year, but the estimate is considerably less than that.

    But the figure cited by the governor included state and federal shares of Medicaid costs. Additionally, the figure included costs that are not connected to the Medicaid expansion.

  • Weather alerts coming soon to smartphone near you MINNEAPOLIS — Millions of smartphone users will soon begin receiving text messages about severe weather from a sophisticated government system that can send a blanket warning to mobile devices in the path of a dangerous storm.

    The National Weather Service's new Wireless Emergency Alerts system offers a new way to warn Americans about menacing weather, even if they are nowhere near a television, radio or storm sirens.

    Beginning Thursday, the system will notify people about approaching tornadoes, hurricanes, blizzards and other threats. When a warning is issued for a specific county, a message of no more than 90 characters will cause late-model smartphones in that area to sound a special tone and vibrate.

    Users do not have to sign up for the service or pay for the text message. And people who prefer not to get the warnings can opt out of the system.

  • Diver's dream: USS Mohawk sinking today will give enthusiasts new adventure

    The retired Coast Guard cutter USS Mohawk will find its final resting place on the bottom of the Gulf. The 165-foot World War II-era vessel will be sunk 28 miles off the coast of Fort Myers on Monday as part of Lee County's artificial reef building program.

    "Using ships like this a reef is great idea," said Ramiro Palma, owner of Scubavice Dive Center in Fort Myers. "Instead of just turning these ships into scrap and turning them into steel cans or something, the history of them will live on.

    "It's a new site so there will be a lot of interest in it at first but I don't think one site is going to make a lot of difference," said Mark Garcy, who operates Naples Marina Excursions, a dive shop and charter on U.S. 41 in Naples. "It is always nice to have a new structure like that but I think the revenue created from the one site won't be that great."

    "It will be available to advanced divers only since most divers are only certified to go about 60 feet," Garcy explained. "There's a lot of things that will keep this from being a really popular destination. I'd say 80 percent of our charter dives are around nine miles out, 15 percent are to around 20 miles and only about 5 percent go out further. It is cool to have but I think that the money spent would have been better used for several sites, smaller ships, barges and things like that, that are closer to shore."

    Traces of red tide present in samples off Naples Pier, South Marco Beach NAPLES — Traces of red tide were present in background concentrations in water samples taken Monday from Naples Pier and South Marco Beach, but no indications of any harmful algae bloom are present in Southwest Florida, according to the Collier County Pollution Control and Prevention Department.

    "We have not received any reports of dead fish or respiratory irritation," the Pollution Control and Prevention Department reports Thursday in a news release.

    No health effects are anticipated because of the background concentrations, which include less than 1,000 cells per liter of the red tide organism, Karenia brevis, the county notes.

    Stepped up holiday patrols set for Naples Bay after ruling strikes speed zone law NAPLES — When boaters cruise along Naples Bay on the Fourth of July, there will be more marine officers patrolling the waters.

    Enhanced marine patrols are normal for holidays, but Independence Day is the first one since a Collier County judge on June 21 struck down the city's boat speed law. The law had created extended idle-speed zones on weekends and holidays in Naples Bay.

  • Summer dining deals in full swing in Southwest Florida It’s summer and the living is easy. Local restaurants are making it even easier on your budget to dine out with summer specials.

    Many places have specials for certain days of the week, some have sunset or early dining prices and one — Cloyde’s Steak & Lobster House — has extended its sunset menu for the whole evening every night of the week.

    Others have dinners for two that include a bottle of wine, or are offering easy-on-the-wallet lunch and dinner menus. Take advantage of the hot weather and enjoy good food without turning up the heat in your kitchen. The following are specials that do not require a coupon:



  • The Canadians are coming...and so are the Germans, English, Eastern Europeans and South Americans! International buyers are taking advantage of favorable home prices and dollar-to-loonie, -euro, -pound and -peso exchange rates to fuel a surge in Southwest Florida’s real estate market. For some local Realtors, foreign homebuyers account for 60 percent of their business, arriving on our shores — or driving across the border — to snap up investment and vacation properties at prices that are a ghost of the boom years.

    And many are paying cash. They’re also hiring local decorators and remodelers, shopping in our stores and dining at our restaurants — a boon to the economy, as well.

    "In Collier County, nearly two-thirds of our buyers are foreigners," says David Gallus, broker and owner of Premiere Plus Realty in Naples. "If we took foreign buyers out of the equation, we’d be dying. A lot of Americans don’t have the cash and banks are still reluctant to give loans even to well qualified buyers."

  • The Metropolitan Opera’s 'Live in HD' summer encore presentations The Metropolitan Opera’s "Live in HD" summer encore presentations continue on Wednesday evenings through this month at theaters across the country. Participating theaters in Southwest Florida are the Hollywood Stadium 20 in Naples, Belltower 20 in Fort Myers and Town Center Stadium 16 in Port Charlotte.

    Tickets are $12.50, and all screenings begin at 6:30 p.m.

  • Mondays offer second chance to catch FMff’s best offeringsFilm fans who missed some of the 77 movies screened during the Fort Myers Film Festival earlier this year have a chance to catch some of the best features at "Missed it Monday" starting Monday, July 30, and running through Sept. 3 at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center in downtown Fort Myers.

    Admission is $5. Doors open for happy hours at 6:30 p.m. and the shows start at 7 p.m.

    Join filmmakers and indie enthusiasts for dinner and drinks at Ford’s Garage prior to the event and get $2 off your entree. Then, enjoy the afterparty at Twisted Vine Bistro for late night happy hour on the patio.

  • Shelling in the Ten Thousand Islands
  • When: July Daily, 2012 | 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.Where: 750 Palm Point Dr. Goodland, FL 34140 -Price: $60 | Ages: All agesTickets: http://www.fishandtournaples.com

    Two people for $60 shelling summer special for 1.5hrs. Limited seating available through July & August only! Our Florida naturalist captains will take you and a guest shelling in the remote Ten Thousand Islands.

    Call 239-970-0066 to book your trip.

    750 Palm Point Dr. Goodland, FL 34140

  • Murder Mystery Dinner Train: Deadly Doubles
  • When: July 08, 2012 | 5:30 p.m.Where: Colonial Station - Fort Myers, FLPrice: $66 | Ages: All ages

    Seminole Gulf Railway, Murder Mystery Dinner Train presents “Deadly Doubles.” Game, Set, Love, Death. Tennis stars match wits against the mob in this humorous twist on the game of champions.

    Join the fun as we unravel a comical mystery before your eyes. It is up to you to decide just who the killer is and why they would do such a dastardly deed. A prize will be awarded to the one super sleuth in each dining car. Price includes a scrumptious five course dinner, murder mystery show and train ride. Cash / Credit beverage service on board the train. Full bar, wine list, beer, and non-alcoholic offerings.

    Train departs promptly at 6:30 pm Wednesday and Thursday and 5:30 p.m. Sunday. $66 per person, plus tax and gratuity

    239-275-8487 or http://semgulf.com

  • Laughter Yoga
  • When: July 8, 2012 | 9 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.Where: Bija Yoga - Naples, FLPrice: Free | Ages: 12+

    Light stretching and lots of laughing. Call 239-404-6306 for additional information or directions.

  • Serpents: Fangs & Fiction
  • When: July 08, 2012 | 7:00 a.m.Where: Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens - Naples, FLPrice: Free - $15.95 | Ages: All agesTickets: http://www.napleszoo.com/Visitor_Info/visitor-info.htm

    Discover the truth behind the fears about the world's reptiles. This fast-paced program features snakes, lizards, and tortoises from near and far including Florida's venomous snakes.

    This event takes place in the in the Safari Canyon Open-Air Theater.

  • Tai Chi
  • When: July 09, 2012 | 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.Where: Saint Paul's Episcopal Church - Naples, FLPrice: $8 - $10 | Ages: All ages

    Beginners level exercise. Cost: $10 per class ($8 prepaid) Questions? Call Ann Marina at 682-4575.

  • Magic Music Show
  • When: July 09, 2012 | 6 p.m.Where: Collier County Public Library - East Naples Branch - Naples, FLAges: 2+

    Magic music show: Ages two and older, 6 p.m. Monday, East Naples Branch Library, 8787 U.S. 41 E., Naples. 239-775-5592

  • Line Dance Classes
  • When: July 09 & 12 2012 | 1:30 p.m.Where: Veterans Community Park - North Naples - Naples, FLPrice: $5 | Ages: All ages

    Line dance classes: Beginners, 1:30 p.m. Mondays; intermediates, 1:30 p.m. Thursdays, Veterans Community Park, 1895 Veterans Park Drive, Naples. $5. 239-272-7431

  • Dogs in the Garden
  • When: July 08, 2012 | 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.Where: Naples Botanical Garden - Naples, FLPrice: Free - $12.95 | Ages: All ages

    When: 8 to 11 a.m. Tuesdays and Sundays in July; 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily in August

    Where: Naples Botanical Garden, 4820 Bayshore Drive, Naples

    Cost: Free for members and their dogs; $12.95, adults; $7.95, children 4-14; $7.95, dogs

    Information: 239-643-7275 or www.naplesgarden.org

  • Beach Walk
  • When: July 10, 2012 | 10 a.m.Where: Lovers Key State Park - Bonita Springs, FLPrice: $1 - $5 | Ages: All ages

    Join a park naturalist for a one-mile walk through the estuary and along the beach. Learn about plants, birds, seashells and marine life.

    Fees for program participants are included in park admission: $5 for vehicles with two to eight passengers, $3 for vehicles with one individual, and $1 per pedestrian or cyclist. All programs take place at Lovers Key State Park at 8700 Estero Blvd., Fort Myers Beach, Florida. To register, call 463-4588.

  • Beginning Birding
  • When: July 10, 2012 | 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.Where: Lovers Key State Park - Bonita Springs, FLAges: 12+

    Explore the prime birding areas of Lovers Key State Park with a park ranger. Learn how to identify the birds you see and where to go in the park for great birding. A limited number of binoculars will be provided. Reservations required, call (239) 463-4588.

  • Guided Walk with Norm DeWolfe
  • When: July 10, 2012 | 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.Where: Calusa Nature Center and Planetarium - Fort Myers, FLAges: All ages

    Tuesdays & Fridays, except Friday 7/27

    Calusa Nature Center and Planetarium

  • Free Slurpees at 7-Eleven for National Slurp-Day
  • When: July 11, 2012 | 7 a.m.Where: Participating 7-Eleven stores in Collier and Lee counties - Naples, FLPrice: Free | Ages: All ages

    It’s that time of year when the sun is hot and the Slurpee® drinks are free-zing – emphasis on the FREE part. July 11, aka 7/11, is the day that 7-Eleven, Inc., the world’s premier convenience retailer, celebrates its birthday and says “thank you” to its customers with free Slurpee drinks at participating stores. This year’s 7-Eleven® Day marks the company’s 81st birthday. Customers can pour their favorite Slurpee flavor in colorful, 7.11-ounce “Birthday” cups throughout the day, while cup supplies last.

  • Guided Kayak Trip
  • When: July 11, 2012 | 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.Where: Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center - Naples, FLPrice: $40 - $45 | Ages: 12+

    Guided kayak trips: Visit Rookery Bay, Henderson Creek and mangrove tunnels, 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesdays, Rookery Bay, 300 Tower Road, Naples. $40, members; $45, others, includes equipment, instruction and learning center admission. 239-417-6310

  • Mangrove Guided Walk
  • When: July 12, 2012 | 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.Where: Matanzas Pass Preserve -Price: Free | Ages: All ages

    Mangrove guided walk: 9:30 to 11 a.m. Thursdays, Matanzas Pass Preserve, 199 Bay Road, Fort Myers Beach. Free. 239-533-7444

  • Understanding Classical Music
  • When: July 12, 2012 | 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.Where: The Brooks Commons Club -Price: $20 - $25 | Ages: All ages

    Concerts are magical experiences if you know how to listen. Wouldn't it be wonderful to enjoy concerts, symphonies, concertos, overtures, sonatas, suites, and chamber music knowing what to listen for and understanding what is happening? Here's a golden opportunity to have what composers "do" explained in simple, easy-to-understand, language and concepts. Please call 434-4737 for further information or visit https://RegisterRA.fgcu.edu

    Location: The Brooks Commons Club, 9930 Coconut Road in Bonita Springs

  • Kids Free Fridays
  • When: July 13, 2012 | 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.Where: Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center - Naples, FLAges: All ages

    This summer education program runs through Aug. 10 and provides free admission for children ages 12 and younger who are accompanied by an adult. Educators will present a different topic each week tied to the overall theme of marine mammals, including dolphins, manatees and whales. Activities include marine critter touch tank, story time, crafts, films, and weekly series of pre-recorded virtual dolphin encounter presentations and live video Q&A with trainers at the Dolphin Research Center in Marathon, Florida.

  • Learn how to protect from identity theft - Luncheon
  • When: July 13, 2012 | noon to 1 p.m.Where: CJ's On the Bay - Marco Island, FLAges: 18+

    Come have lunch in a relaxed atmosphere with great food while learning how to protect yourself, your family and business against the number one crime facing our nation and our area-Identity Theft.

  • Matinee at the Museum: Captain Blood
  • When: July 13, 2012 | 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.Where: Collier County Museum - Naples, FLPrice: Free | Ages: All agesTickets: http://www.colliermuseums.com

    Barely escaping the gallows after his arrest for treating wounded rebels who were fighting the oppressive King James, Peter Blood flees England and becomes enslaved on a Barbados plantation of buccaneers. When he escapes, no ship sailing the Spanish Main is safe from Blood and his companions. Starring Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland. Movie begins at 1 p.m. in the Collier County Museum’s lecture hall.

  • Basics of Nature Photography, Focus on Composition – Post-processing and Creating a Book
  • When: July 14, 2012 | 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.Where: Naples Botanical Garden - Naples, FLPrice: $25 - $30 | Ages: 12+

    The last of a four class series on how to capture a great image with your camera. Master Naturalist and Photographer Dr. Christine Cook will start by illustrating successful techniques in the classroom before taking you out to the Garden where you can practice with Christine’s guidance. This class is excellent for beginning to experienced photographers that want to know how to set up for better pictures. It is recommended, but not mandatory, that you take all 4 classes to get the most from this course. Please bring your own digital point-and-shoot or SLR camera and know how to use it at least on automatic. Bring a tripod if you have one. Sign up now; class is limited to 10 participants. To register call 239-643-7275 or email education@naplesgarden.org. For details visit us at www.naplesgarden.org.

  • Social Tennis Program
  • When: July 07 &14, 2012 | 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.Where: Marco Island Racquet Center - Marco Island, FLPrice: Free - $6 | Ages: 18+

    The Marco Island Racquet Center has begun its women's social round-robin program that meets from 8 to 10 a.m. each Saturday.

    The program is free for center pass-holders and $6 per week for nonmembers.

    It is open to the public and players of all skill levels.

    The cost for an annual pass is $215 for adults and $29 for children younger than 18.

    The racquet center is at 50 Bald Eagle Drive.

    Call 394-5454 for more information.

    Marco Island Racquet Center

  • Garden Talk, Tropical Fruits
  • When: July 14, 2012 | 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.Where: Edison and Ford Winter Estates - Fort Myers, FLAges: All agesTickets: http://www.edisonfordwinterestates.org/

    Throughout the Edison Ford gardens tropical fruits are plenitful with many typical varieties known to thrive in Florida including mangoes, avocados and starfruit; and several unknown varieties including black sapote, Barbados cherry and lychees. Join Edison Ford horticultural garden and learn how to plant for success and enjoy the "fruits" of your labor.

    The Edison Ford offers Garden Talks in the Edison Ford Garden Shoppe the second Saturday of every month. Reservations required. Edison Ford Members FREE; non-members $5. Participants will receive 20% off in the Edison Ford Garden Shoppe.

    Edison and Ford Winter Estates

  • Third Street South Farmers Market
  • When: July 08,14, 2012 | 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.Where: Third Street South - Naples, FLPrice: Free | Ages: All ages

    The farmer's market includes fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, homemade pasta, live herbs and plants, spices and teas, salsa, jams and jellies. The market is located behind Tommy Bahama, 1220 Third St. S., Naples. Free admission. Call 434-6533 for more information.Third Street Farmers Market

  • Summer Jazz on the Gulf at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf ClubSummerJazz on the Gulf at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club

    The smooth sounds of Jazz continue this summer at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club’s 26th annual “SummerJazz on the Gulf” free concert series. Gorgeous sunsets, beautiful views of the Gulf, and refreshing breezes provide the perfect backdrop for the fun, free concert series held on the resort’s scenic Watkins Lawn overlooking the Gulf of Mexico.

    “SummerJazz on the Gulf” takes place one Saturday evening per month from 7 - 10 p.m. beginning in June. This year’s concerts will be on:

    • Saturday, June 25
    • Saturday, July 23
    • Saturday, August 27
    • Saturday, September 24, 2011.

    The entertainment lineup is not yet set, but last year’s entertainment included performances by Blue Dice, Late Night Brass, The Mike MacArthur Band, and Denise Moore and Then Some. All of the concerts are free, family-friendly, and open to the public.

  • Mercato's Summer Series of FUN!
  • MUSIC & MOVIES @ Mercato
    Plan your hot summer nights around great
    Mercato Nights Music Series:Movies on the Lawn
    06/07/12 - Jahgape06/19/12 - Secretariat
    07/05/12 - Damn Outlaws07/17/12 - Jaws
    08/02/12 - Mubone 08/21/12 - The Great Outdoors
    09/06/12 - The High Chiefs09/18/12 - Tootsie

    Hurricane season's arrival means time to check your property, flood insurance NAPLES — Making sure your property insurance is in order before the storm can make all of the difference after a storm.

    Hurricane season, which began Friday, is an important time to make sure you know what your insurance covers — and what it doesn't.

    This year in Collier County, it's also important to learn the details of changes in flood risks based on the 2012 FEMA flood insurance rate maps that went into effect May 16. New changes to the maps were announced Friday with more specific information to be released by June 14 that could ease the need for new flood insurance policies for thousands in Collier.

    Since half of the year is hurricane season, June through November, and the peak of that season lasts three months, August through October, it's good to know your risks and how to protect yourself and your property.

    Wildlife Clinic: watch for gopher tortoises under your car

    LOOK BEFORE DRIVING AWAYPlease take a minute to look under your car before driving away from our beach parking lots. Gopher tortoises frequently rest under parked cars. Injuries to these beautiful creatures are preventable if we all just take a moment and remember to look under our vehicles.

    SURPRISE RESCUEA man spotted a small cat in the road on Collier Boulevard when he was out for a morning jog. Somehow, the cat was uninjured, despite two trucks straddling it as they sped along. The jogger grabbed the cat right before it got to the median. The frightened cat burrowed into the jogger's chest as he carried it back home. Believing it was a stray house kitten, the man and his wife offered it food. It didn't take long for them to realize he had rescued a baby bobcat, not a domestic kitten!

    Senior cents-ability: there are discounts for seniors in many places — just ask If you're a retiree, coffee is still free at your local bank and at Chick-fil-A.

    There are senior discounts around time that may not be openly advertised, but they are there.

    Health and medications may be at the top of the list for senior needs, and some area institutions honor that. Local retail heavyweight Publix offers several basic prescription medicines free for all customers, but it's the first-line diabetes meds — metformin and lisinopril — that make the difference for seniors.

    Snook season gone until 2013

    Florida's snook fishing season will remain closed on the west coast until 2013 instead of opening as planned on Sept. 1, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) announced this week.

    Wildlife officials made the decision in light of a 2010 cold kill, which reduced the snook population on the state's coasts.

    Snook season was closed on both the Atlantic and Gulf coasts on Jan. 16, 2010, but it reopened last September on the Atlantic Coast, where the freeze was not as severe.

    Recreational snook season is expected to reopen in the Gulf on Sept. 1, 2013. Until then, catch-and-release of snook will be allowed.


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