Saturday, February 20, 2010

Mariner Pointe 1032 - 2 bed 2 bath condo on San Carlos Bay-Sanibel Island - Available now!

Mariner Pointe is a beautiful bayfront property offering spectacular views of San Carlos Bay.
A prime location for those who like to watch the dolphins play. With its own private pier this complex is perfect for those who like to fish.
This very nice 2 bedroom 2 bathroom condo was recently remodeled and is located on the 2nd floor.
Call us now and ask for Mariner Pointe 1032!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Council approves purchase of lighthouse - City to buy landmark, property for $447.70

Council approves purchase of lighthouse

City to buy landmark, property for $447.70

After waiting more than five and a half years, the City of Sanibel has finally been given the opportunity to purchase the most recognizable landmark on the island.

And without hesitation, local leaders immediately opened up their wallets and bought the Sanibel Lighthouse - and the surrounding 44.7 acres of property - from the United States Department of the Interior for $10 per acre, or a total cost of $447.70.

"I'm hoping to see some good things from the lighthouse," councilman Jim Jennings said after the resolution to purchase the landmark was unanimously approved. "I think there are some good ideas in use around the country with other lighthouses."

On Feb. 5, the city received a letter from the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management, which stated that the land on which the lighthouse sits has been classified suitable for use under the Recreation and Public Purposes Act of 1926.

"The Sanibel Lighthouse & Keeper's Quarters site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places," the letter states. "All future rehabilitation of buildings and/or structures on the site must be carried out in a manner that is compatible with their historic and architectural qualities and consistent with the recommended approaches for rehabilitation set forth in the Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines."

Among the conditions of approval for the sale, which must be completed within 30 days of the official notice, is requiring a licensed archaeologist to be present during any an all ground-disturbing activities and requiring revenue generated through usage fees or lease of the facility to be utilized in the management and maintenance of the properties.

According to City Manager Judie Zimomra, the city will now be able to apply for historical preservation grants to assist in the funding of repainting the Sanibel Lighthouse. The city is also working on developing a long-term master plan for the property and cottages at the site.

In other business, councilors continued their discussions of issued related to land development regulations which may affect redevelopment in the resort housing sector, which is expected to be handed over to the city's Planning Commission in the coming weeks.

"We're not going to go into grand detail about this," said Mayor Mick Denham. "I think we'd prefer to leave that to the Planning Commission to handle. I think what we are doing is painting a broad brushstroke of the issues."

The six primary issues brought up for debate included density, short-term occupancy, lot coverage of impermeable areas, setbacks, height limits and coastal construction.

Denham suggested that the city maintain the existing density for all hotels, motels, condominiums and resort properties, as long as the structures remained within their current 3-D footprint. Fellow councilor Peter Pappas offered that extending "grandfathered" policies to the owners of those properties might encourage investors to keep their short-term stay units the same.

"I think we're all in agreement that we don't want to see any density increases," added Marty Harrity.

One topic that will likely become an issue is maintaining the city's height restrictions for commercial properties. Since the release of the new Flood Insurance Maps in 2008, some properties - especially three- and four-floor structures - may require a variance to exceed the current 45-foot restriction.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, several members of the audience offered their suggestions on resort housing redevelopment. Resident Herb Rubin noted that the presence of swimming pools on a property may affect density but added, "I think this is a wonderful way to start."

Planning Commissioner Holly Smith also reiterated her request for a map indicating all properties affected by the upcoming discussions, and submitted an additional request for clarification on "redevelopment vs. modernization."

Lee Olsen, a Pointe Santo resident for the past 35 years, offered that the council should "think as broadly as you can."

"I appreciate your point of view," he added. "And I think you're right on the money."

Planning Department Director Jimmy Jordan told the council that his staff will consider the suggestions posed by the council and prepare a report in time for their next session, on Tuesday, March 2.

The council also unanimously approved the re-allocation of $65,000 from the city's Shared Use Path maintenance budget in order to extend Sanibel's bike path to Captiva, the final step in connecting the pathway between the adjoining islands.

An estimated $80,000 is required to complete the work, which will extend the path along Sanibel Captiva Road between Pine Avenue and the bridge at Blind Pass. The Sanibel Bicycle Club has agreed to pay the remaining $15,000 portion through its Trails In Motion fund.

On Jan. 28, Sanibel's Parks and Recreation Committee approved staff recommendations to move forward with the path extension due to safety concerns for people who use the roadway to travel from one island to the other.


Friday, February 12, 2010

Best-selling author Tim Dorsey to feature Sanibel in 2011 book

Author Tim Dorsey, whose latest novel 'Gator A-Go-Go' was released last month, will appear at the Sanibel Island Bookshop on Feb. 16.

While he wouldn't go into to any explicit details, New York Times best-selling author Tim Dorsey did mention that his next book - to be released in early 2011 - will feature Sanibel Island as one of its settings.

"It's gonna have seashell collecting... and a killing," Dorsey playfully announced on Tuesday, one week ahead of his scheduled author appearance at the Sanibel Island Bookshop, coming on Tuesday, Feb. 16 starting at 1 p.m.

Currently taking part in a 34-day, 54-stop book-signing tour, Dorsey's latest novel - entitled "Gator A-Go-Go" - was released last month. Full of all aspects of the history of Florida, whether political,
ecological or sociological, the Indiana-born writer's novels are intensely interesting to Florida mystery fans.

"This book is the best-selling one so far... and I think it's the fourth time I've been on the New York Times Best Seller list," Dorsey explained. "I enjoy the writing, and it helps take care of my family. I'm just happy to continue doing what I love."

From 1983 to 1987, Dorsey was a police and courts reporter for The Alabama Journal, the now-defunct evening newspaper in Montgomery. He joined The Tampa Tribune in 1987 as a general assignment reporter. He also worked as a political reporter in the Tribune's Tallahassee bureau and a copy desk editor.

From 1994 to 1999, he served as the Tribune's night metro editor. He left the paper in August 1999 to write full-time, releasing his first novel - "Florida Roadkill" - that same year.

Dorsey has since published novels in several languages, including "Hammerhead Ranch Motel," "Orange Crush," "Triggerfish Twist," "The Stingray Shuffle," "Cadillac Beach," "Torpedo Juice," "The Big Bamboo," "Hurricane Punch," "Atomic Lobster" and "Nuclear Jellyfish."

In his latest release, Dorsey brings back the compulsive and outrageous character Serge A. Storms, an adventurer in his mid-40s who often must rely upon a prescribed cocktail of drugs in order to keep himself stable. And like the author, Storms has a penchant for visiting a variety of landmarks in the Sunshine State.

"When writing a new book, I usually start by thinking of a locale in Florida, or a locale and a time period. These are usually places that I'd like to visit," said Dorsey. "Then I spend a bit of time talking with some of the people there... that's where the ideas (for a plot) come from. I like to look into the history of these places and bring that history to life. Reading the local newspapers helps, too. Then you can see what's going on and what people are talking about."

In "Gator A-Go-Go," the world's biggest beach party is about to get crashed! One spring break location obviously isn't enough for Storms, so he must do them all, traveling through various historic locales, spewing history nuggets at anyone who won't run away, and dispensing his own signature brand of justice. Along the way, he and his sidekick Coleman attract a growing following of the nation's top college students... and a mysterious gang that leaves a trail of young bodies in their wake!

For more information about Tim Dorsey and his novels, visit

The Sanibel Island Bookshop is located at 1571 Periwinkle Way. If you have any questions or would like to preorder a book, call 472-5223.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Shell Island Beach Club 6D

This lovely unit provides easy Island living on the Gulf of Mexico. There is a little something for everyone at this tropical beachfront paradise. Relax in the large, heated swimming pool, play a game of tennis or shuffleboard or enjoy an afternoon barbeque at one of the on-site grills. Take the boardwalk for a short walk to the world-famous Sanibel Island beaches where you can spend the day looking for sea shells or relaxing on your beach chair while listening to the waves lap against the shore. Enjoy panoramic views of the sunsets from your private screened lanai.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Sanibel Community House broadcasts 'Dancing' live to island restaurants

 The Sanibel Community House has leaped into the use of leading edge technology with its successful internet broadcast of "Dancing with the Islands' Stars" on Jan. 23.

Five local restaurants signed up to receive the sold-out inaugural event. This three camera shoot was simulcast live with a direct feed into the television sets of these satellite locations. The Dunes Golf and Tennis Club, The Lazy Flamingo-Periwinkle, Beachview Golf Club, The Sanctuary Golf Club and Doc Ford's Sanibel Rum Bar & Grille all participated in this Sanibel first of its kind broadcast.

Local filmmaker Rusty Farst teamed with Gene Rogers of Attic Chat Productions to arrange the transmission from the Sanibel Community House to unite the locations, complete with interviews and custom advertising tailored specifically to the islands.

"The restaurant owners' willingness to allow our team to invade their kitchen space, television and computer equipment, and their trust in us to pull this whole thing off was inspiring to me. All our successes are inner-connected here on Sanibel." Farst said.

The satellite guests phoned in their votes for the People's Choice Award, creating an interaction with the Community House audience. To maintain the integrity of the voting, the system recorded only one vote per telephone to make it equitable with the one vote each that the Community House audience had.

"The only text votes that counted were during the short intermission that was taken for the Community House audience to vote. Once the intermission was over, no more votes were tabulated as it was time to announce a winner," said Marge Meek, event chair and VP of the Sanibel Community Association. "It was our first attempt at engaging people at remote locations and the technology served us well. We learned just how much people like to text; some didn't know when to stop and kept voting until the equipment was removed after the show was over."

Farst's team included Rogers along with computer genius Kody Peterson, who ran cables and hardware through each of the satellite locations into their televisions, often times running wiring over ceilings and under cabinets.

"I felt privileged to be a part of this great event," said Rogers. "It was inspiring to see many different individuals from many different walks of life come together and contribute to its' success. The anticipation and excitement surrounding the evening was tangible and contagious."

Rogers' expertise operating the high tech computer tricaster enabled him to monitor and select from three different cameras and live feed the show directly to the Web connection and Internet address.

"The viewing of 'Dancing with the Islands' Stars' was a tremendous success. Eighty five guests enjoyed an all-you-can-eat New York strip steak buffet. The audience truly felt a part of the evening and many said this should become an annual event. Thank you for including The Dunes," said Sean Balliet, general manager of The Dunes Golf & Tennis Club. "We hope that a camera crew can be stationed at each satellite location next year to show all the live spectators just how much fun we are having."

"The Sanctuary is proud to support the efforts of the Sanibel Community House. It is an essential aspect of our island community," stated Ken Kouril, general manager of The Sanctuary Golf Club. "We had three members dance in the event and the live feed generated much excitement throughout our membership. We are delighted with the success of the event and impressed with the changes and new offerings the Community House provides for the community."

Doc Ford's manager Raynauld Bentley pronounced, "Every seat was full - our guests loved it. Lets' do it again."

Ron Rich, operations manager for the Lazy Flamingo, responded, "We even had tourists belly up to the bar and watch the whole performance. And when the Stars were dancing, the place got really quiet, then the cheering erupted. Everyone got sucked into it."

The Sanibel Community House would like to thank the West Wind Inn for donating accommodations for the Attic Chat Crew and Billy's Bikes for providing ground transportation.

"I expect to see a lot more use of these technologies," added Farst. "I worked with a great team of dedicated professionals, who brought a new level of innovation to the fund-raising scene."

Farst is preparing DVD copies of the "Dancing with the Islands' Stars" event to be available at local retailers soon and at the Sanibel Community House, located at 2173 Periwinkle Way. Stop by to purchase one and while there, become a member of the Sanibel Community Association and encourage more breakthrough efforts.