Vol. 9 No. 1 - September 24, 2008


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryBridge to close Sunday night

HOLMES BEACH – When the barricades go up on Sept. 29 blocking traffic from going onto the Anna Maria Island Bridge, the various service providers will be ready. The question remaining, though, is: Will the rest of us?

Spokespeople, elected officials and department heads outlined their preparedness last Thursday evening at the final public meeting before the bridge closure. More...

Trolleys, buses to adapt to closure

Manatee County and public and private schools are adding buses to keep people moving in the heavy traffic expected during the 45-day Anna Maria Island Bridge closure beginning on Sept. 29.

Manatee County Area Transit will add a shuttle bus to the existing route six from Blake Medical Center on 59th Street West in Bradenton to Anna Maria Island, said Ralf Heseler, division manager for MCAT. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryBattling the bridges: Cortez humpback bridge repairs done, remains closed

CORTEZ – The newly-renovated 127th Street humpback bridge near the eastern end of the Cortez Bridge is finished, but remained closed at press time pending a warranty from the builder.

Manatee County has asked for a security bond on the bridge before approving the opening, said developer Norman Burke, who financed the $825,000 bridge rehabilitation project to accommodate customers at his nearby, newly-constructed boat storage facility, the Bradenton Boat Club. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Battling the bridges: Wrong materials closes bridge in Anna Maria

The humpback bridge on North Bay Boulevard across the Lake LaVista Inlet has been shut down for repairs.

A hole in the pavement on the bridge was noticed earlier this year. It kept growing, but it took a while to get inspectors there make sure the problem was with the pavement and not with the structure of the bridge, according to Public Works Director George McKay. More...

City settles lien issue for attorney’s fees

HOLMES BEACH – Commissioners recently agreed to release a property from a lien resulting from a code enforcement board fine of $57,250 and accept $1,500 from GRP Loan, LLC to cover the city attorney’s fees.

The case began in September 2007, when the code enforcement board ordered then owner Robert Byrne to clean up the overgrown property at 6804 Marina Drive. When the property wasn’t cleaned up, the board imposed a fine, and when the fine wasn’t paid, the city placed a lien on it. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryRescued pelican goes back to nature

BRADENTON BEACH – Fishing and cutting bait can be devastating to pelicans, as visitor Missy Wojciechowski, from Sebring, discovered over Labor Day weekend.

While walking on Bradenton Beach, she and her aunt came upon some people trying to help an injured pelican. Her aunt called Ed Straight, of Wildlife Inc. Education and Rehabilitation, luckily located a few blocks away, who rescued the bird. More...

Leak in new waterline causes delays

ANNA MARIA — A leak in the new potable waterline the county is installing along Gulf Drive in Anna Maria is causing more problems.

"They’re still working on it now," Manatee County Project Manager Walter Sowa said on Friday. "There is a leak along a 30-foot stretch that is hard to get dewatered enough to tighten." More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News StorySkim competition set for Oct. 5

BRADENTON BEACH – Some time last century, someone cut a piece of plywood into a circle and added water, and skimboarding was invented.

Jim Brady, of the West Coat Surf Shop in Holmes Beach, recalls kids sliding on their boards across a smooth, ankle deep cushion of water at Manatee Public Beach’s sandy shoreline as early as the 1960s. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryGet ready for Bridging the Gap
Bayfest 2008 joins Gap campaign

ANNA MARIA – Organizers are working hard to finalize plans for Bayfest, fall’s first festival and the city’s most popular street party, which is set for Saturday, Oct. 18, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.on Pine Avenue.

"Bayfest is not showing any signs of being affected by the bridge closure," Bayfest Chair Cindy Thompson said.

Bayfest is one one of a host of Bridging the Gap events being sponored by local merchants and The Sun. More...

reel time

Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryPunta Gorda: Old Florida charm, modern convenience

Punta Gorda has been just off my radar. I pass it regularly on I-75 on my way to the Keys and Pine Island Sound. Its modest skyline lies to the west, at the foot of the Route 41 Bridge, where the Peace River meets Charlotte Harbor. As an outdoor writer and avid saltwater angler I’ve spent many days on Charlotte Harbor and the Gulf Islands, chasing the tarpon, snook, redfish and trout that make it a premier destination for anglers worldwide. A decade ago Captain Jonnie Walker introduced me to the wonderfully wild river, one of Florida’s most scenic and prolific water courses. More...

real estate

Home ownership: Back to the basics

I hardly know where to start, I consider it my job, you might even say mission, to dispense as much information about the real estate market as possible. Up until two years ago, this was pretty easy and tons of fun. The real estate market was going full tilt,making history as the best time ever to buy and invest in real property. And, boy oh boy, did we buy – everything from second homes to pre-construction condos. Unfortunately, as we now know, the real estate market was not a solid brick structure, rather a house of twigs built literally on sand. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News StoryRoll out with Island Scooter Store

Picture this, it’s a dazzling day on Anna Maria Island. A couple of puffy clouds are balanced on the powder blue sky, the pale water shimmers as it embraces the sandy beach and the breeze gently brushes past your cheeks.

Now picture that into this imagine of perfection you’re navigating a bright red scooter, slowing down to watch the dolphins, or stopping for a quick dip in the Gulf of Mexico or lunch at an outdoor café. It doesn’t get much better. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story
Investment Corner

Chicken Little and the facts of life

In the original story of Chicken Little, an acorn to the noggin convinces the heroine that the sky is falling. On her way to see the king to let him know the bad news, she convinces several other characters that the peril of the sky falling is real, leading them to get waylaid by a fox and almost eaten. The moral is that the sky doesn’t fall and Chicken Little decides that an umbrella to shield her from falling acorns while walking in the forest will help reduce her worry. More...


Anna Maria Island Sun News Story New greens put smiles on golfers

HOLMES BEACH – The Island’s only golf course got a facelift lately, and the grounds superintendent says it’s a move that will green the Key Royale Golf Club in more ways than one.

John Secor installed new grass on all the putting greens starting in May and ending this month, and he says the type of grass that he used will save money as well as improve the looks and the way the greens play. More...

Anna Maria Island Sun News Story Spirit week kicks off soccer season

The Island Community Center 2008 Soccer Spirit Week kicked of Thursday night at the Center with Beach Bistro donating a true Italian style meal. Many were in attendance at this annual fundraiser as coaches handed out uniforms and schedules for the upcoming season, which begins this week with a full slate of games. More...


Rhodes’ continue hot streak in horseshoes

A dozen players occupied a trio of pits at the horseshoe games on Saturday, Sept. 13, and coming out of pool play as the uncontested winner was the undefeated team of Tom Rhodes and George McKay. Three of the remaining five teams held a shoot-out for second place, and, when the clay settled, Debbie Rhodes and Gary Howcroft took their place as runners-up with a 23-16 win over Jay Disbrow and Hank Huyghe. More...


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