A good season, thanks to volunteers & a wonderful St. Patrick's Day!
My goodness isn’t the year going by quickly! I can’t believe it is almost Easter and soon our Winter Residents will be leaving………….which means a huge portion of our volunteers will be leaving.
These nice people come down from up north, roll up their sleeves and pitch in where they are needed. Another thing we will notice is all the fun and activities, parties, fund raisers, events, plays and entertainment will scale down to a minimum until next fall when our Winter Residents return.
This year has been a good year for all. Much of our unemployed work force has gone back to work; business has been better than it has been in – I bet - five years. Tourism revenues are up, foreclosures are coming down and home sales are improving. We hope our summer weather will be kind to us so we can relax a little before we start gearing up for the beginning of a new and successful Season.
*A HUGE thank you to Christopher and Jim Shucart! They are the developers who have upgraded and improved the appearance of the Hitching Post Shopping Center AND they have now started the process to install the new traffic light at Hitching Post and Eagle Lakes Community Park!! I was ever so pleased to sit in on a meeting regarding the landscaping of U.S. 41 E where they have to tear out some of the median to carve turning lanes on each side approaching the traffic light.
I was concerned that the landscaping might not fit in but that isn’t the case. They are planning on extending our wonderful, grassy landscaping with plants and fox tail palms. They will be taking all of the dead landscaping out and replacing them. They are working closely with Collier County transportation so that everything meets specs. I was truly impressed with how willing the Schucarts were to work with us. Thanks Shucarts! You’re the Best!
*In case there is any confusion, there are TWO traffic lights being installed on U.S. 41 E. This is one. The other is being paid for by the Lennar Homes/Treviso Bay people at the intersection of Southwest Blvd. and Whistler’s Cove.
*I have become friends with a nice lady named Tinka, whom I met a couple years ago at the Sugden Theater (we have season tickets for the same night in the same row) Theater. She suggested I add my e-mail address to each of these pieces in case someone would want to reach me to ask a question or show support. Thanks Tinka! My email is: DonnaFiala@gmail.com. Please, also, if you want to volunteer in the our campaign, please click on this link and fill out the form. I appreciate all your support and good efforts.
*Here’s a piece of good news I just received from the GreenLinks Golf Villas at Lely Resort: Sam Snead’s Oak Grill and Tavern at Lely Resort, adjacent to GreenLinks Golf Villas, has opened! The restaurant was previously known as the Flamingo Island Grill. Their daily hours of operation are 11 am to 11 pm. Happy hours are 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. to 11 pm, offering Wine and a full bar. They are now accepting reservations by calling 793-6623.
*The Taste of Chicago has opened on Airport Rd. and Davis Blvd. I tried to get it to see what it looks like a couple of times but there were so many cars I couldn’t even drive into the parking lot. It looks like a really good start. Of course there are always beginning bugs to work out but I’m sure they’ll figure them out quickly. I heard that their hamburgers were terrific! Gosh we’ve needed restaurants out here in East Naples. Finally they are finding us and we’re happy that they have. Come on steakhouse! Come on Dairy Queen! We’re waiting for you too.
*The St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Naples was the biggest I’ve ever seen! (Click here if you're on Facebook and want to see photos like the one above...thanks, Maxine Nix!)
The crowds looked almost like Time Square, and the parade just kept on coming with marvelous floats, delightful music, wonderful costumes and happiness everywhere! I was a part of my own little entry into the parade with Carl Waltman driving his gorgeous red 2006 Mustang that has never seen a speck of dust in its life, and his granddaughter Alyssa Rausch and her friend Alexis Risch passing out Tootsie Pops to the kids.
Tom Walsh looked just like a Leprechaun in all his Irish finery, driving his 1949 dark green Jeepster. Ron & Sue Cummings and Maureen Drum brought a huge escort – a giant stuffed bear all dressed in his finest green costume. Alan Wittenauer, our parade captain, made sure everything was organized and ran perfectly. His Mom, Sally, cheered us on. We were lucky enough to be in front of the East Naples Civic Association’s rainbow float.
Their crew included President Chris Hagan, Angie & Leo Davis, Nancy Markham, Carol Fries, Bob & Loretta Murray, George & Sally Danz, Mike Russo, Neil Curley, Maxine & Bill Nix, Jeff Macasevich, Greg Speers, and Suzanne Bogard!