Vol. 8 No. 26 - March 26, 2008


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Coquina quiet, but Island is packed

BRADENTON BEACH – A few traffic stops, a couple of warrant arrests and a few people who brought in beer being told to empty their bottles – it was like any other Sunday at the beach, except it was Coquina Beach on Easter Sunday.

Law enforcement was there in force with officers patrolling on foot, horses, ATVs and in cars. The road connecting all five parking areas was fenced off so that patrons would have to go back onto Gulf Drive to get to other areas. Nobody was loitering in the parking lots and the flashy vehicles belonging to gang members were somewhere else. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryAndrea hoping her pies repeat sweet success

ANNA MARIA – The ads for the Sign of the Mermaid tout Andrea Spring’s title – 2007 Crisco National Pie Champion. She hopes to add 2008 to her credentials soon.

Spring, who owns the Sign of the Mermaid with her husband, Ed, will be competing again for the crown of desertdom, the Crisco National Pie Championships on April 18 to 20 in Celebration, Fla. More...

Cell firm IDs 46 sites for equipment

BRADENTON BEACH – Officials questioned Chris Sinclair, of NextG Networks, about the company’s plan to install a series of antennas and optical repeater boxes on existing power poles in the four island cities.

Sinclair spoke at last week’s meeting of Island elected officials and said he had made presentations to two of the four cities and said the company is trying to understand each city’s approval process.

"An improvement in cell coverage means you won’t have dropped calls," he explained. "The other issue is lack of capacity. We can address both. We are a carrier’s carrier. We do not cater to the public; the operators come to us." More...

City seeks county OK for pets on path

BRADENTON BEACH – The signs at the entrances to Coquina Beach say, "No dogs allowed on trail, beach or in park – Manatee County Ord. Chapt. 2-24."

If the city of Bradenton Beach has its way, a new sign will replace them without the word trail.

The city commission voted Thursday to send a letter to the Manatee County Commission supporting the concept of allowing dogs on the Coquina Beach Trail. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StorySign still blowin’ in the wind

HOLMES BEACH – Monday was supposed to be one of the last days that the variable message signs would read "FDOT Test Sign." Instead, high winds gave one of the signs a test that it could not pass.

Holmes Beach Police officers detoured traffic around the sign at 31st Street and Gulf Drive Monday around 2 p.m. after receiving a complaint that the mast arm that holds it was moving excessively up and down in the winds, which were gusting up to 25 mph. The city called Manatee County, which called the Florida Department of Transportation. Engineers from the state and the county came to the scene and appeared to be concerned also. Around 6 p.m., they decided to leave up the detour for the night, although the city took it down around 10 p.m. when the winds died down. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryRain doesn’t stop sunrise service

HOLMES BEACH – A light drizzle wasn’t enough to stop the Kiwanis Club of Anna Maria Island’s 44th annual Easter Sunrise Service at Manatee County Beach last Sunday. It did bring out the best in people, as they huddled under umbrellas, beach towels, even programs, to keep dry.

"If this were a football game, this wouldn’t be an issue," Rev. Dale Lawson of CrossPointe Fellowship said before giving the sermon. It brought a hearty laugh from the attendees. More...

Sue Normand set to give deposition

The defense in the shooting of Sue Normand will hear from the victim on Monday, April 28, at the public defender’s office in downtown Bradenton.

Also called to give depositions are former Bradenton Beach City Commissioner Bill Shearon, who lives on the beach near where defendant Mark Koenigs was shot by Manatee County Sheriff’s officers following a massive manhunt on the Island the morning of the shooting. Another witness, Bradley Martin, and two sheriff’s officers, deputy Angel Buxeda and Adrianne Walls, will also testify that day. More...

Anna Maria comp plan approved

ANNA MARIA – Anna Maria’s comprehensive plan was approved on Friday by the Florida Department of Community Affairs after years of exhaustive review by city and state officials and local residents and committees.

The plan ensures that Anna Maria’s distinct personality will be preserved, Mayor Fran Barford said on Monday, when she was notified of the approval by the Sun. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Island sisters start the ballgame

Leaving the Island for McKechnie Field on the eve of arguably the business holiday of the year in Manatee County is something only a die-hard baseball fan would endure.

Holly and Trina Rizzo, of Holmes Beach, went for another reason. – to sing.

The talented sisters were invited to sing the National Anthem before the Pittsburgh Pirates’ spring training game with the Cincinnati Reds Friday before a sellout crowd. More...

reel time

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Hell’s Bay Boat Works survives and thrives

The perfect boat, that’s all I wanted. Actually, I had a perfectly functional boat at the time, a 17-foot Action Craft Bay Runner. I had fished the boat for close to 12 years, even having it completely remodeled with custom gel coat, new hinges, a new outboard engine and twin air switches that operated trolling motors.

The only problem was that I was spending most of my time fly fishing in shallow water. My boat ran like a charm, handled beautify in a chop, but poled like a scow. More...

real estate

Voters to decide on historic tax plan

Is it my imagination or is it true that since I moved to Florida 10 years ago the state has gone from a warm affordable state in which to kick back and retire to making history practically every year?

We had the incredible run up in housing prices, followed by the incredible downward spiral in housing prices, then we had the 2000 presidential election squabble, major hurricanes, insurance costs through the stratosphere and another presidential election squabble. When will it end and let us all just relax? Well, apparently this year is going to be another history maker so don’t plan on relaxing for long. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Home stars at Egret stores

Once upon a time, a snowy white egret found her way from the land of ice and cold to the warm beaches of Anna Maria Island. The lovely egret was graceful and peaceful and had smashing good taste. She established herself at the northern tip of the Island, where she planned on living happily ever after enjoying the sparkling Gulf waters. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Rain and FCATs stop baseball actions

With basketball season just a memory, it is time to give our full attention to a baseball program at AMICC that has enjoyed years of success. The Majors and the Minors are in full swing, playing their games between GT Bray and the Anna Maria Island Community Center. Coaches are ready and are priming their young hopefuls as AA and T-Ball get under way after spring break. So it’s full steam ahead! Or so you would think, right? More...


Hutton heads home a winner

Six undefeated teams emerged from a 30-horseshoe-player pool on Saturday, March 15, that produced seven come-from-behind wins during the games. In the first playoff round, Paul Sheatler and Norm Good defeated Rod Bussey and Bob Lee 21-18. At the same time, Debbie and Tom Rhodes posted a 22-10 win over Herb Puryear and Adin Shank, as Bob Mason and Bob Hawks scored 14 unanswered points in their 21-20 first round triumph, but then lost a 21-18 heartbreaker to Good and Sheatler in round two. In the finale, Good’s six-pack double ringer sealed a 24-8 victory for his team over the Rhodes. More...


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