Monthly Archives: January 2017

Obituaries – 12-22-2010

Patricia R. Cook

Patricia R. Cook, 76, Holmes Beach, died Dec. 19. She was born in Wichita Falls, Texas, and moved to Holmes Beach in 1998 from Fenton, Mich.

Mrs. Cook was a member of Crosspointe Fellowship, the Elkettes of BPOE 1511 and the Women’s Organization at Crosspointe Fellowship.

Visitation will be held from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 22, with a service at 2 p.m. at Crosspointe Fellowship, 8608 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.

Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 26th Street Chapel, Bradenton, is in charge of arrangements.

Memorial donations may be made to TideWell Hospice Inc., 5955 Rand Blvd., Sarasota FL 34238. Condolences may be made online at

Mrs. Cook is survived by husband Bruce W. of Holmes Beach; son Mitchell Huntley of High Point, N.C.; daughter Susan Lindsay of Melbourne, Fla.; step-sons Rodney of Vernon, Mich. and Todd of Albuquerque, N.M.; 12 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Kenneth Albert Fuchs

Kenneth Albert Fuchs, 91, died Dec. 10. He was born Feb. 24, 1919, in Milwaukee.

Mr. Fuchs was a graduate of West Division High School. He spent 42 years employed with F.W. Woolworth Co., rising from stock boy, stock manager, district manager to buyer in the Woolworth executive office in New York City. He retired in 1980.

He and wife Celia lived in Manatee County for 30 years, and for 25 years at Mt. Vernon. He was a member of Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, Holmes Beach.

A service was held Dec. 15 at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church. Inturnment was to be in Milwaukee with his wife.

Mr. Fuchs is survived by his daughters, Gail of Ventura, Calif., Diane of West Allis, Wis., and Sandy of San Antonio.

John Joseph Merrigan III

John Joseph Merrigan III, 45, also known as Judge and Chainsaw, died Dec. 3.

He was a surfer, hunter and a sea captain. His stories will be remembered forever.

A celebration of life will be planned at a later date. To leave memories or remarks, visit

Mr. Merrigan is survived by his wife, Sharon; daughter Brittany Trauthwein; siblings Maureen, Colleen, Jamie and Chris; nieces and nephews Shaylee, Olivia, Samantha, Anna Maria, Reagan, Devon, Kyle and Bobby; grandmother Bea Alpaugh; sisters-in-law Shannon, Marji and Wendi; brother-in-law Ted; and parents Fran and Bob Fletcher and Sondra and Red Crager.

Fishing – 12-22-2010

Dock fishing prospers in cold weather

With temperatures dropping into the low 40s, fishers last week were migrating into the local canals, creeks and rivers in search of a bite. Most inshore species, in search of warmer water, migrate to these areas. Not only do these areas provide a warmer environment, they also provide a food source. Small bait fish congregate in these areas for warm water, creating an ample amount of food for predators.

Some of the preferred cold-weather targets are docks, piers and bridges. Anna Maria Island and the local waters host ample residential canals, which in turn hold hundreds of docks. What is nice about these spots is they are usually sheltered from the wind. When the wind is blowing 20-30 mph out of the north, it’s good to find a warm, sheltered area.

Tactics for fishing docks and pilings can be simple. You may want to bump up your gear to a stout spinning rod with 20-pound braided line spooled on your reel. Generally, 30- to 40-pound fluorocarbon for leader is a good bet. If the water is clear, you can always scale down to a 20-pound leader. For hooks, I like to use a No. 2 or No. 4, thick gauge, extra-sharp hook. A medium split-shot set at 12 inches above your hook and the rig is complete. You can also use a jig head, which has the weight and hook all in one.

When choosing baits for dock fishing, it’s wise to carry varieties. Baits for dock fishing include shrimp, fiddler crabs, sand fleas, tube worms and cut bait such as mullet, ladyfish and frozen threadfin herring. If you notice, none of these baits are highly active. Typically, fish that are staged under a dock aren’t looking to chase bait. The closer you put your bait under the dock, the better chance you have at hooking up.

Typical encounters while dock fishing include redfish, snook, trout, sheepshead, grouper and mangrove snapper, to name a few. Some of these species can grow large, so be ready. You may also find that once you find a dock that has fish, it will typically hold fish all winter.

Next time the wind is blowing, try fishing some sheltered areas like docks and canals. Not only will you be warmer, but you might catch some fish, too.

Jonny Keyes at Island Discount Tackle reported that canal fishing was the best strategy last week. Fishing around local docks was producing redfish. “Most of the reds have been in the 15- to 17-inch range,” Keyes said. “But there are some keeper fish being caught as well.”

Fishers are using live and fresh-cut shrimp as well as using Berkley Gulp shrimp for bait in the canals. Other species being caught in the canals and around docks have been black drum, sheepshead and trout.

Keyes suggested carrying a full arsenal of varied artificial baits. “When the water temps drop like this, you never know what kind of mood these fish will be in,” Keyes said. “They may want root-beer colored Gulp shrimp or they want to hit a hard bait. You just never know.”

Keyes also suggested carrying a few fresh baits, such as fiddler crabs, tubeworms and shrimp.

“Fishing the beach side of the Island was a little tough this week,” Keyes said. “Once the waters calm down, try walking the beach using a banana jig to catch pompano.” Other species to look for from the beach include ladyfish, bluefish and jack cravalle.

Capt. Warren Girle reported catches of keeper grouper, mangrove snapper, flounder and Key West grunts being caught before last week’s cold front rolled through. “Nearshore fishing was productive,” Girle said. “But you had to put the bait right in front of their noses.” Live shrimp and cut threadfins were top choices for bait.

Moving inshore, Girle said he’s been catching some keeper redfish in the bay. Soft plastics on a .25-ounce jig head with a slow presentation seemed to be a good target. Moving into the deeper flats resulted in nice catches of catch-and-release trout on the same jigs. “After this front came though,” Girle added, “the fish seemed to be a little stunned from the cold. Slow down your presentation and be patient.”

Girle said he’s expecting good fishing as soon as the water temperatures come back up a few degrees.

Jeff Medley at the south pier on the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Piers said there haven’t been many fishers on the pier, but the ones there are catching fish. Daily catches of keeper gag grouper have been reported. “The grouper are just away from the bridge on the rubble piles,” Medley said. “Best baits have been fresh-cut mullet or Spanish mackerel.” Medley added. “You have to throw out a bait and let it rest right in the structure to get a bite.”

Other catches on the pier include bluefish, mackerel and bonito. Using live greenbacks for bait has been the first choice to catch these migratory species, while spoons and jigs come in at a close second.

Medley also reported that the flounder bite has been good this week. “Try using a greenback with the tail cut off and drag it on the bottom,” Medley said.

Capt. Wayne Genthner of Wolfmouth Charters said although conditions were less than favorable, fishing has been good. Genthner reported limits of gag grouper earlier in the week before the front brought conditions that made it impossible to get out on the Gulf of Mexico. Most of his gags were caught within 2 miles of the beach.

Inshore, Genthner’s charters are catching lots of redfish in the bay. Fishing local docks has been the key to catching reds. Genthner said he likes to use hand-picked shrimp on a jig head and fish under and around docks. Other species lurking in these areas include black drum, small red grouper and sheepshead.

Genthner added, “There’s a lot of fatty sheepshead schooling up in the backwater creeks of Sarasota Bay.” Again, fresh-cut shrimp has been the bait of choice to catch these tasty striped fish.

Genthner added, “Deeper water is warmer water, so look for docks with the deepest water you can find.”

Capt. Mark Howard of SumoTime Fishing Charters reported that the winter pattern has arrived with full force. Redfish and sheepshead are holding up around deep-water docks. “A nice live shrimp rigged with a split shot and 1/0 hook will fire up the bite for excellent table-fare,” Howard said.

“Sheepshead also will start to load up on the nearshore reefs and wrecks around Tampa Bay,” Howard added.

Egmont Key area has many artificial reefs that will hold sheepshead, grouper and mangrove snapper. “The inshore grouper bite is off due to the cold, but with warmer weather compared to last week, they should fire up and chew.”

Howard suggested using a variety of baits to find out what they’re biting.

Capt. Larry McGuire of Show Me the Fish Charters reported that due to the weather, he only made it offshore once last week. “We had that window of opportunity between cold fronts,” said McGuire.

Limits of gag and red grouper were caught as well as some mangrove snapper. The bite was ranging from water depths of 40-50 feet. “Live pinfish and grunts were our best bait,” McGuire said, “but frozen sardines and cut-bait also worked.”

Moving out past depths of 100-feet, McGuire is catching amberjack and big mangrove snapper on the wrecks and springs.

Send fishing news to

Islander Calendar – 12-22-2010

Friday, Dec. 24
7 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. — Christmas Eve candlelight worship at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 6608 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Information: 941-778-1813.
10:30 to 11 p.m. — Singing of the carols followed by mass at the Episcopal Church of the Annunciation, 4408 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.
5:30 and 9 p.m. — Christmas Eve service at Roser Memorial Community Church, 512 Pine Ave., Anna Maria.

Saturday, Dec. 25
9:30 a.m. — Nativity of Our Lord service at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 6608 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Information: 941-778-1813.
10 a.m. — Nativity of Our Lord service at the Episcopal Church of the Annunciation, 4408 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.
10 a.m. — Christmas day service at Roser Memorial Community Church, 512 Pine Ave., Anna Maria.
4 p.m. — Mass at St. Bernard Catholic Church, 248 S. Harbor Drive, Holmes Beach.

Wednesday, Dec. 29
5:30 p.m. — “Old Junk to New Treasures” craft program for teens at the Island Branch Library, 5701 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Information: 941-778-6341.

• The first and third Mondays of each month, the American Legion Kirby Stewart Post 24, 2005 75th St. W., Bradenton, hosts dinners for the public. Fee applies. Information: 941-794-3390.
• Tuesdays, 11:30 a.m., duplicate bridge at the Episcopal Church of the Annunciation, 4408 Gulf Drive W., Holmes Beach. Information: 941-778-3390.
• Tuesdays, 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., Coffee and Conversations for Seniors at the Anna Maria Island Community Center, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria. Information: 941-778-1908.
• Tuesdays, 4:30 p.m., Inquiring Minds cross-denominational study group meets at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 6608 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Information: 941-778-4579.
• Wednesdays, 6 to 8 p.m., teens meet at the Anna Maria Island Community Center, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria. Information: 941-778-1908.     • Alternating Wednesdays, 11 a.m., memory loss support group at the Longboat Island Chapel Aging in Paradise Resource Center, 6200 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Longboat Key. Information: 941-383-6491.     • Wednesdays and Saturdays, 9 a.m., players pitch horseshoes in the pits at Anna Maria City Hall, 10005 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria. Information: 941-708-6130.     • Fridays, Senior Adventures Group meets for outings to various locations. Information: 941-962-8835.
• Saturdays, 8:30 a.m., Kiwanis Club of Anna Maria Island meets at the Anna Maria Island Beach Cafe, 4000 Gulf Drive, Manatee Public Beach, Holmes Beach.
• Sundays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Open air market on Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach. Information: 941-518-4431.

Coming Up:
• Jan. 1, Shamrock Shiver Charity Plunge, Bradenton Beach.
• Jan. 3, Privateers invade Anna Maria City Hall.
• Jan. 5, After Hours Book Club, Tingley Memorial Library.
• Jan. 5, Gulf Coast Writers meeting, Island Branch Library.

Save the Date:
• Jan. 15, Anna Maria Elementary School Dolphin Dash.

Send calendar announcements to Please include the time, date and location of the event, a brief description and a contact via e-mail and phone.

The Islander Classifieds: Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2010


COMPUTER: 2.4 GHz with newly loaded Windows XP-PRO, $100. 941-756-6728.

GE WASHER AND dryer: Almost new, $270. Call 941-567-5005.

FOR SALE: BRAND new in box Leapfrog Disney Zippity. $50. Please call 617-733-6528.

SILVER PLATE CHARGERS: ‘Will make your holiday table special!’ 36 of them, buy some or all. $3 each. Call 941-761-1928.

COLLAPSIBLE LARGE DOG kennel: 41 x 31 inches, $50. 941-779-2127.

TV: 13-INCH Magnavox. Color with remote and built-in clock. Very sharp picture, $45. Call 941-383-1757.

COUCH AND COFFEE table, country style, $50. China cabinet with lights, drawers and four doors, cherry wood, $75. 941-761-1135.

DINING ROOM SET: 36-inch round table and four chairs. Black, Pottery Barn, $100. 941-761-1135.

COMPUTER: FLAT SCREEN monitor, 17-inch. ‘MAG,’ $20. 941-795-8359.

TABLE: HIGH-TOP, 42-inch round with tile top. Wood base and chairs, ‘like-new’ $80. 941-795-8359.

COCKTAIL AND END tables, glass, bronze. ‘Fabulous’ $60. 941-795-8359.

BIRD CAGES: ONE parrot size, one cockatiel size, $35 each. 941-356-1456.

YAMAHA VINO CLASSIC: Two scooters for sale. 2007 blue, only 1,500 miles, great condition. $1,150 or best offer. 2006 silver, only 850 miles and in great condition. $1,050 or best offer. Great gas mileage, 35 mph-plus, easy to ride, and really great fun on the Island! 941-928-8735.

GIRL’S BIKE: SPECIALIZED Hotrock, light purple, like new. $85. 941-928-8735

ANTIQUE COPPER POTS and bowls, collection $300, or $50-75 each. Wine racks, antique burl-wood rocker and more. View at The Islander store, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

THREE GRAND MIRRORS, gorgeous frames, 4×6 feet to 5×8 feet. $200-$350. View at The Islander store, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

ORIGINAL, LOCAL ART for sale. View at The Islander store, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

AERIAL PHOTOS of Anna Maria Island. View and purchase online:

COMMERCIAL RESTAURANT SUPPLIES: Ice machine: install and service $2,100. You pick up, $1,600. Assorted stainless shelves: $75. Six-burner gas cooktop and charbroiler: $1,800. 941-730-2606.

FREEBIE ITEMS FOR SALE: Individuals may advertise up to three items, each priced $100 or less, 15 words or less. FREE, one week. Deliver in person to The Islander, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, e-mail, fax toll-free 1-866-362-9821. (limited time offer)


GLORIA DEI LUTHERAN Church: All are welcome to come and worship with us! Please call 941-778-1813 or visit us at: for worship times. 6608 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

CORPORATE AND GOLF entertainment. Private parties and fundraisers. Florida: October through March. 337-367-0339.

THE ANNA MARIA Garden Club will hold its January meeting at noon Jan.19. Meeting will be at Roser Church and a speaker from Selby Gardens will be speaking on African Violets (Gesneriads). Public is welcome. 512 Pine Ave., Anna Maria.

CALLING ALL ARTISTS! Sidewalk pre-Christmas sale at The Islander newspaper. Co-sponsor sculptor Woody Candish. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 29. No fee. Call 941-778-7978 or stop by 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, to register for the Where’s Woody Sale.

HAITI $$$ DONATIONS to the Ministry of Presence Inc.,, urgently needed for local representatives to aid homeless children. Info: The Islander, 941-778-7978.

TERRY HAYES, REALTOR. Signature Sothebys International. 941-302-3100.

BRADENTON ROTARY CLUB meets at noon Mondays at Mattison’s Riverside, 1200 First Ave. W., Bradenton. Club members enjoy fellowship with like-minded professionals. Club projects offer opportunities to benefit the community locally and worldwide. To attend a meeting as our guest, call Trish, 941-747-1871. More information:

WANTED: YOUR OLD cell phone for recycling. Deliver to The Islander, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

FISHING GEAR WANTED: The Privateers and The Islander are collecting new or used, repairable fishing poles and reels, nets, tackle, buckets, etc. to give to children. Donate your gear at The Islander newspaper office, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.

FREE GUN LOCK courtesy of Project Childsafe, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Holmes Beach Police Department. Pick up at The Islander office, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach. Don’t be sorry, be safe.


ROSER THRIFT SHOP open 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday; 9 am to noon Saturday. Donations 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Wednesdays. 511 Pine Ave., Anna Maria. 941-779 -2733.

GIANT YARD SALE: Art and artists sale hosted by The Islander in the Island Shopping Center, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 29. Bargains and fun shopping. Info: 941-778-7978.

ISLANDER STORE SALE: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 29. Tie-Dye Mullet T-shirts, AMI stickers, collection of art, mirrors and Island kitsch. One-day sale at The Islander in the Island Shopping Center, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.


LOST CAMERA: Panasonic Lumix, small black camera in pink neoprene-style pouch. Call 941-778-7978 if found.


PARENTS NEEDED for loving homes to foster puppies and kittens until they are old enough for adoption. All food and medical provided. Julie, 941-720-1411.


50-FOOT BOAT dock for rent. Prime location, many amenities. Call 941-778-3013.

MAINSAIL MARINA BOAT slip rentals: Monthly boat slips for rent starting as low as $225 per slip. Please contact Margo or Tay, 941-201-3222. E-mail: or

BOAT LIFT RENTAL: Bimini Bay, 10,000-pound, no bridges, water, electric. 941-778-1565.


SALES ASSOCIATE: MOTIVATED, experienced real estate licensee for busy Island office. Please call Jesse or Robin at 941-778-7244.

LIVE-IN HANDYMAN to housesit for winter season. In exchange for beachfront property, detached room. 941-779-9781.

GRAPHIC DESIGNER WANTED part-time for ad/editorial layout. InDesign and Photoshop expertise a must. Advertising experience required. Intro-resume to


LOOKING FOR A babysitter or pet sitter? For all ages, call Carolyn. Red cross certified. 941-778-2301.

LOCAL ISLAND STUDENT babysitter available. CPR and first aid-certified, early childhood development major. Emily, 941-567-9276.

KIDS FOR HIRE ads are FREE for up to three weeks for Island youths under 16 looking for work. Ads must be placed in person at The Islander office, 5404 Marina Drive, Holmes Beach.



HEALTH FOOD STORE on Anna Maria Island, located in busy shopping center, large inventory, all equipment and fixtures, completely turnkey, business growing monthly, owners moving, great opportunity for mom and pop. $189,000. Call Jim, 941-580-0626.



LET US DRIVE YOU! Airports, cruise ports. Flat rates. Anna Maria Sunshine Car Service. 941-778-5476.

PROFESSIONAL I.T. SERVICES: Complete computer solutions for business and home. Installation, repair, upgrade, networking, Web services, wireless services. Richard Ardabell, network engineer, 941-778-5708, or cell 216-509-1945.

LIGHT CARPENTRY, HOME repairs, handyman work, deck repairs, dock repairs, etc. Retired tradesman, Island resident. No job too small. Call Steve Doyle 941-778-1708.

CONTACT CAPT. GREG Burke of A Paradise Realty for all of your real estate needs, selling, listing, buying, market analysis. Listings needed, present inventory sold or under contract. 941-592-8373, or e-mail:

I DON’T CUT corners, I clean corners. Professional, friendly cleaning service since 1999. 941-778-7770. Leave message.

TRANSPORT SERVICE: LET me drive you to the airport or anywhere in Florida. Flat rates. Reasonable. Call Mike, 941-567-6634.

HOUSE CLEANING BY Laura. Excellent references. One house, 2BR/2BA, $50. 941-539-6891.

NEED NEW DOORS? Fiberglass doors and frames, glass inserts, patio, storm and Simonton windows. TDWS. 941-722-7507.

TOASTED COMPUTER SERVICES. Your home and business specialist. On-site service, virus/spyware, cleanup, system setup, upgrades, diagnosis and repair, internet/wireless networking, custom system design. 941-224-1069.

WILDLIFE REMOVAL and relocation: Problem solving for all animals, big and small. Call Joe, Westcoast Nuisance Wildlife Service. 941-720-4152.

INDEPENDENT POWER WASHER: Anna Maria resident. $15/hour, $50/minimum. Services include houses, trailers, pool and wood decks, store fronts. Removes stains and mildew. Free estimates. Please, call Bill, 941-896-6788 and save!

SASSER’S PRESSURE CLEANING: Complete wash, tile roofs, docks, houses, driveways. Licensed, insured. Free estimates. 941-812-8612.

ALZHEIMERS CARE HOME: Run by nurse Mary Jane. One opening now. Select Group AL9427. Call 941-737-9455.

BUSINESS-TO-BUSINESS JD’s Window Cleaning looking for storefront jobs in Holmes Beach. 941-920-3840.

ISLAND MERMAIDS CLEANING and Co.: Last-minute Christmas gift certificates! 36 years of happy customers. Organizing, pet-watch, storm-check, etc. Rentals our specialty. 941-778-3046.

DESIGNER FOR HIRE! All your graphic needs covered! Web design. Call Jon at Smashcat Studios, 941-778-2824 or 941-545-0192.

BEACH SERVICE air conditioning, heat, refrigeration. Commercial and residential service, repair and/or replacement. Serving Manatee County and the Island since 1987. For dependable, honest and personalized service, call William Eller, 941-795-7411. CAC184228.

ANYONE CAN TAKE a picture. A professional creates a portrait. I 0want to be at your wedding! 941-778-2711.

NADIA’S EUROSAGE Relaxing, healing massage in the comfort of your home. Call today for an appointment, 941-795-0887. MA#0017550.

CHECK MY HOUSE! When you’re away, we stay close to home. We provide full house checking services to ensure your house is secure while you are away. Call 941-928-8735, or e-mail for details.

TUTORING SERVICES: Specializing in algebra, geometry, calculus, trigonometry and science. Special need students welcome. Grades 3-12. Jenifer, 941-224-1760.

GUITAR TROUBLE? KOKO RAY’S ISLAND studio. Instruction in flute, saxophone, guitar, piano and voice. 315 58th St., Holmes Beach, 941-778-8323.


CONNIE’S LANDSCAPING INC. Residential and commercial. Full-service lawn maintenance, landscaping, cleanups, hauling and more! Insured. 941-778-5294.

ISLAND LAWN SPRINKLER service and repair. Your complete irrigation repair company. Call 941-778-2581.

TREES BY BREEZE Inc.: Custom landscapes, tree trimming, property maintenance. Insured. Since 1988. Chris, 941-778-2837.

JR’S LANDSCAPING AND MAINTENANCE Lawns, native plants, mulching, trimming, hauling, cleanups. Island resident 25 years. Call 941-807-1015.


STRAIGHT SHOT LANDSCAPE. For all your landscape needs. Shell $45/yard. Call Shark Mark. 941-301-6067.

KARAZ LANDSCAPE LAWN service. Mulch, clean ups, power washing, tree trimming and more. 941-448-3857 or 941-448-5207.

SHELL DELIVERED AND spread. Premium grade-A, $45/yard B-grade, $30-$40/yard. Hauling all kinds of gravel, mulch, top soil with free estimates. Call Larry at 941-795-7775, “shell phone” 941-720-0770.

NATURE’S DESIGN LANDSCAPING. Design and installation. Tropical landscape specialist. Residential and commercial. 30 years experience. 941-729-9381.

SASSER’S LANDCAPING AND tree service. Hauling, removal, trimming, installs. Licensed, insured. Free estimates. 941-812-8612.


VAN-GO PAINTING residential/commercial, interior/exterior, pressure cleaning, wallpaper. Island references. Bill, 941-795-5100.

TILE -TILE -TILE. All variations of ceramic tile supplied and installed. Quality workmanship, prompt, reliable, many Island references. Call Neil, 941-726-3077.

CUSTOM REMODELING EXPERT. All phases of carpentry, repairs and painting. Insured. Meticulous, clean, sober and prompt. Paul Beauregard, 941-730-7479.

GRIFFIN’S HOME IMPROVEMENTS Inc. Handyman, fine woodwork, countertops, cabinets and shutters. Insured and licensed, 941-748-4711.

JERRY’S HOME REPAIR: Carpentry work, handyman, light plumbing, electrical, light hauling, pressure washing. Call 941-778-6170 or 941-447-2198.

SOUTHBAY HOME REPAIRS: If it’s broken, stuck, loose, leaks, needs paint, etc. I’ll fix it. Affordable quality work. 941-720-2906.

FOREMOST FENCE: Commercial, Residential. Chain link, vinyl, aluminum, wood, access control. Contractors you can depend on. Call 941-748-2700.

J.E. MURRAY: ESTABLISHED Island builder. New homes, remodeling. 30-year resident. Call 941-778-2316 or 941-730-3228.

CONCRETE/PAVER WORK: 20 years experience. New, repair, replace. Sidewalks, patios, driveways. Joel Snyder, 941-720-1599.


WEEKLY/MONTHLY/ANNUAL rentals: wide variety, changes daily. SunCoast Real Estate, 941-779-0202, or 1-800-732-6434.

WATERFRONT KEY WEST STYLE with dock. Furnished, walk to beach. $150/night, $950/week. $1,900/month off and $2,490/month in season. Use of bikes and kayaks included. 941-794-5980.

ANNA MARIA BEACHFRONT, waterfront vacation rental. 5BR/4BA. $1,500-$2,200/week. 559-760-1331.

SEASONAL: HOLMES BEACH. Spacious 3BR/2BA duplex, upper level. Screened lanai, completely furnished. One house from beach. Gulf view. No pets or smoking. 813-689-0925 or

DIRECT BAYFRONT: 2,500 sf. Beautiful home, 3BR/2.5BA, boat dock, lift, pool, fully furnished. $3,600/month, annual. 941-580-0626.

FOUR-MONTH WINTER special: 2BR/1.5BA furnished, senior park. 15 minutes to beach. Pool, hot tub, recreation room. $995/month. Lease option, $45,000 or best offer. or 863-608-1833.

KEY ROYALE WATERFRONT house for rent. Annual, unfurnished. Beautiful, tropical 2BR/2BA, den, 1,700 sf. Great pool area, gas-heated hot tub, on canal, two boat lifts, two-car garage. Available Feb. 1, 2011. $2,300/month. 941-730-1086.

BEACHFRONT HOME. Spectacular water views, private beach. Ground-level 2BR/1BA, garage. 941-348-9448.

OFFICE, RETAIL, PROFESSIONAL Space: 8803/8799 Cortez Road. 1,200-sf and 1,300-sf. Call 1-800-952-1206.

REMODELED 2-3BR/2BA. Holmes Beach. $975/month plus utilities. First, last, security. Good references. 585-473-9361.

CANCELLATION AVAILABILITY. WESTBAY Cove, Westbay Point, 2BR/2BA, tennis, pools. January and February openings. Sharon, Old Florida Realty, 941-713-9096.

AVAILABLE RENTALS: January through April, 3BR/2BA, canal with pool, $5,000/month. February to April 15, 3BR/2BA, Gulf, $7,000/month. January and February, 3BR/2BA, 150 feet to Gulf $4,500/month. January and February 2BR/2BA condo, Gulf complex, $3,500/month. Anna Maria Realty Inc., 941-778-2259.

SEASONAL: PARTIAL-TO-turnkey furnished. 1BR/1BA off Cortez Road. One mile from beaches. Call Pat with Florida Real Estate team, 941-920-6637.

ESCAPE WINTER: MARCH available, 1BR, across street from beach, washer, dryer, cable TV, Internet. 888-841-8474.

SEASONAL RENTAL AVAILABLE February and April. 1BR/1BA apartment west of Gulf Drive, Anna Maria City. $1,200/month plus tax. 941-778-4499.

2BR/2BA condominiums for rent. Harbor Pines. $650-$750/month. No pets. Call 941-524-5577.

CHRISTMAS/NEW YEAR’S townhouse. Weekend, $350, week, $500. Call for month. Pool, boat slip. Realtor, 941-356-1456. Real Estate Mart.

SEASONAL OR WEEKLY cottage-style rentals. 1BR/1BA or 55-plus 2BR/1BA with pool. Walk to beach, shopping, restaurants. 941-778-3426. Web site


BAYFRONT PELICAN COVE condo: 2BR/2BA great views, close to everything. Call Capt. Greg, 941-592-8373, A Paradise Realty.

DIRECT GULFFRONT: 4BR/4.5BA, den, three-car garage, pool, spa, elevator, security. Immaculate 2005 Mediterranean villa-style architecture, breathtaking Gulf views, furnished, 5,146 sf under roof, north Anna Maria Island. 12106 Gulf Drive, Anna Maria. $3,500,000. Contact owner, broker, 941-920-1699.

I WILL LIST your property on 350 web sites! Laurie Fox, Coldwell Banker,, 941-730-7635.

DIRECT GULFFRONT: 146 feet on the beach. 3BR/4.5BA, office recreation room, spa, pool, outdoor kitchen and theater, elevator, turnkey furnished. $3,950,000. Suncoast Real Estate, 941-779-0202 or 941-720-0288.

FOUR-MONTH WINTER special: 2BR/1.5BA furnished, senior park. 15 minutes to beach. Pool, hot tub, recreation room. $995/month. Lease option, $45,000 or best offer. Individual lots are $38,000. 863-688-3524 or 863-608-1833.

CUSTOM BUILT BY owner: Elevated 3BR/2.5BA, four-car garage. Top-of-the line construction with elevator, lush private gardens and pool. Quiet street, walking distance to beaches and available boat dock. We have bought at Freedom Village so the opportunity to get a great buy is now! Asking $549,000. For pictures and information, e-mail or call 513-378-9100. Also have a like-new 3BR/3BA ranch in northwest Bradenton only $165,000. All by owner.

SMALL HOME AT Bradenton Beach Pines Trailer Park. 55 and older. Lot rent, $392/month. $12,900. 61 N. Bay Drive. Call Bryan, 941-737-7759.

MAKE OFFER; TOWNHOUSE. Pool, dock from $120,000. Village Green 3BR/2BA, two-car garage. Forty-Three West villa. Realtor, 941-356-1456. Real Estate Mart.

PRICE REDUCED: DUPLEX on two deeded lots, both units 2BR/1.5BA, elevated, park under building. $335,000. Call owner: 941-730-2606.


Ahoy, ho, ho

The Anna Maria Island Privateers at the helm of their annual Christmas parade Dec. 11, which the nonprofit capped off with a party at Coquina Beach. The parade began at Bayfront Park in Anna Maria and continued down the Island to Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach. At Coquina, the krewe hosted a lunch and party and visits with Santa for children.

Ahoy, ho, ho

Santa Claus greets a shy Carly Wade, 3, at the party that followed the annual Anna Maria Island Privateers Christmas Parade. Islander Photos: Lisa Neff

Beach Bums’ entry in the parade includes a truck carrying its soccer team, as well as a fleet of electric bicycles and golf carts.

The crowd near Bridge Street in Bradenton Beach cheers for beads during the Dec. 11 Christmas parade presented by the Anna Maria Island Privateers, the nonprofit group that is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

Santa waves to the crowd from the parade stern, leading his followers to the party at Coquina Beach where each year he hears the Christmas wishes of children.

Xmas parade smoke, The cannon blasts to announce the arrival of the annual Anna Maria Island Privateers parade Dec. 11.

Privateers serve hot dogs, dressed with much care by diners, and other party munchies at the post-parade party at Coquina Beach.

The Anna Maria Island Privateers at the helm of their annual Christmas parade Dec. 11, which the nonprofit capped off with a party at Coquina Beach. The parade began at Bayfront Park in Anna Maria and continued down the Island to Coquina Beach in Bradenton Beach. At Coquina, the krewe hosted a lunch and party and visits with Santa for children.

Merry and bright

The Roser Memorial Community Church’s “Joyful Noise” children’s choir performs during Anna Maria’s holiday open house Dec. 10. The choir performed at the historical society park on Pine Avenue.

Real estate specialists Megan Fishbach, Barbara Sato and Liza Morrow-Slaman celebrate at Sato Real Estate, 519 Pine Ave.

Board suggestions for new land-use

With Anna Maria in the process of adding two new land-use categories to its comprehensive plan, the planning and zoning board met Dec. 7 to review the proposed categories and make recommendations to the city commission.

The historic pier-use category will include the city pier and Rod & Reel Pier and their surrounding waters. The marina-use category encompasses Galati Marine, its docks and a nearby spoil island.

The commission decided to create the new categories after it annexed those lands and the underlying waters into the city earlier this year.

P&Z members agreed that the size of the city pier and R&R Pier would limit any enlargement of retail operations at those locations.

Allowed uses should include a restaurant, boat docks, bait and fishing equipment sales and fishing, the board agreed.

Member Tom Turner noted that some non-conforming uses exist at the two piers that were grandfathered to the operations. He suggested making no changes in the current usage.

“Let them keep what they have. They’re too small for large retail operations,” he said.

Garrett said the city owns the pier and could control any additional uses the lease-holder might want to add. The size of the R&R Pier would make it difficult for any new use under the land-development regulations, he added.

P&Z members agreed, although Bob Barlow expressed concern about live music.

“That should be regulated by new zoning, not the comp plan,” Garrett said. Once the land-use categories are adopted, the commission would create zoning to match, he said.

In the marina-use category, several members were concerned about live-aboards at Galati. Several years ago, the marina abolished long-term residents from the docks. It does, however, permit owners of large boats to overnight at the docks for a few days, according to co-owner Chris Galati.

Turner said allowing live-aboards was “stretching everything to allow more motels, hotels, whatever you want to call them. I’m not concerned about maintenance and repairs, but we shouldn’t tolerate live-aboards.”

Building official Bob Welch said Galati self-regulates overnight stays and does not allow ongoing live-aboards.

The marina discourages stayovers beyond one night, Chris Galati said at the November P&Z meeting.

P&Z chair Sandy Mattick said a time limit should be established on how long people could stay on a boat.

Member Carl Pearman said that some large boats have crews that live on the boat. The city should also address that issue, he said.

Garrett said the commission can regulate live-aboards similar to other area city ordinances, which allow boaters just a one- or two-night stay before they had to depart. He said he would check other municipalities for live-aboard ordinances and report back to the board.

P&Z member Bob Barlow cautioned against “over-regulating” the marina, which has been in existence for decades.

Other current non-conforming uses at Galati are painting, sand-blasting boats and boat and motor repairs, among other uses. The city needs to “look at getting those uses legally conforming,” Garrett said.

A restaurant is a permitted use at the marina, as is a ship’s store. Board member Mike Pescitelli was concerned that Galati could sell packaged beer and wine from the store.

Garrett said the commission could decide that issue in an ordinance.

Members agreed that before any recommendations are forwarded to the commission, Garrett would meet with the Galatis to discuss the proposals.

Garrett said he would refine the board’s suggested uses in a draft land-use statement and return with that to the Jan. 4 meeting.

Pine Avenue parking also will be on that meeting agenda and Mattick urged more public participation on the subject.

“We need public input on these parking suggestions. The more input, the better we can decide,” she said.

Anna Maria pier is tops – again

The Anna Maria City Pier remains the No. 1 visitor attraction in Manatee County, according to the most recent visitor study from the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The July-September 2010 visitor profile report by Research Data Inc. of Tampa for the BACVB said 34.2 percent of visitors named the 100-year-old wooden pier their most favored Manatee County attraction, up 5.9 percent from the 32.3 percent figure in the June-August 2009 study.1.

Although St. Armands Circle in Sarasota is the top area attraction among visitors to the Bradenton area, Anna Maria’s historic pier — owned by the city — has been ranked the No. 1 Manatee County attraction since the quarterly surveys began in 2008. St. Armands Circle has headed the attractions list in each survey.

The latest report showed the Rod & Reel Pier, also in Anna Maria, was the third most-favored county attraction, behind the Ellenton mall.

Visitors gave the privately-owned Rod & Reel Pier a 27.8 favorable vote, down from the 30.6 percent for the same quarter in 2009. Retail shopping at the Prime Outlet Mall in Ellenton climbed from 30.6 percent in the 2009 study to 35 percent for July-September 2010.

The Historic Bridge Street Pier in Bradenton Beach gained in popularity among visitors, rising from a 13.3 percent favorable rating in the 2009 quarter to 17.5 percent for the same quarter this year, a 31.6 percent increase.

Multiple responses were permitted in all voting categories of the survey.

Going to the beaches on Anna Maria Island was the most favored activity among visitors with a 90.2 percent rating, followed by dining out (83.3 percent), relaxing (78.3 percent) and walking on the beach (78 percent).

Anna Maria Island also gained the top three spots in attributes that best describe the area.

Beautiful, clean beaches headed the list with a 92.8 percent vote, while clear, blue water was next at 86.5 percent and sunning on the beach third with an 86.3 percent rating.

Also in the Top 10 of attributes for the area were family friendly at No. 6 (63.5 percent), ease of traveling at No. 7 (63.5 percent), good food and restaurants was No. 8 (61.8 percent) and No. 9 was good value for money (61.5 percent).

The survey reported $48.4 million in direct expenditures during the quarter, an increase of 5.5 percent from the 2009 figure, and a total economic impact of $76.5 million from July-September 2010, up 5.5 percent from the same quarter in 2009.

Average visitor spending during the summer quarter was listed at $466 per person per trip and $75.50 per day. The average tourist party budgeted $1,424 for their vacation in the area, according to the survey. Out-of-state visitors budgeted an average of $1,721 for their vacation, while Florida visitors had a budget average of $977.

The average visitor party stayed 8.1 days, spent $610 on accommodations, $423 on food and beverages and $158 on retail purchases.

Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they planned to return to the area, 81.1 percent said they were “very satisfied” with their vacation time, and 13.7 percent said they were “satisfied.”

Visitors to the Island in May 2011 will have even more reason to visit the pier.

In recognition of the 100 years the pier has been operating, the city is holding a pier centennial celebration May 13-14. Pier committee chair Sissy Quinn said the celebration would be “befitting of the old Florida charm of the pier.”

Quinn, an Island history buff, has headed the committee since its 2008 inception and plans a spectacular affair. She’s always known the pier and the Island are the driving force behind area tourism.

“The pier is old Florida. It’s a piece of Island history that’s been around for 100 years. Visitors realize an old wooden pier is something they won’t find at other Florida resort destinations. This is a piece of history, and I’m delighted to be a part of the celebration.”

Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore, a former Holmes Beach mayor and current Island resident, said the pier and the Island are “the engine that drives tourism.” The BACVB survey on what attracts people to the area confirms what’s she’s known since she moved to the Island as a teenager.

But occasionally during budget discussions, some county staff don’t always view the Island and its attraction as “the engine” for tourism, she said.

One example is the fare-free Island trolley.

“When the bean counters look at numbers, they just say ‘let’s charge for a ride.’ They have no understanding that the free trolley is part of the Island’s attraction, an amenity that draws visitors and keeps cars off the Island streets, especially during the winter season. Thankfully, the commission understands we have to take care of the Island. It’s what runs the economy,” she said.

Whitmore observed that pictures of the Island beaches are always featured in advertisements, brochures and on websites for home-buying in Manatee County, especially in the eastern county region.

“The Island and beaches are what sell those homes out east. Sooner or later, every person who moves to Lakewood Ranch or east Manatee County is going to visit the Island. Unfortunately, some people have a hard time understanding the strain this puts on Island infrastructure and the Island way of life,” she said.

Another example of the Island’s perception among some officials could easily be the demolished Manatee Public Beach pier.

County commissioners have pledged to rebuild the pier, but there has been difficulty fitting the estimated $3 million cost into a departmental budget.

“Everybody loved that pier,” Whitmore said. “The commission promised Holmes Beach a new pier, but it’s moving slowly. But it will happen.”

From the latest tourism survey report figures, it would appear the Anna Maria City Pier, the Rod & Reel Pier, the Historic Bridge Street Pier and Anna Maria Island are selling the Bradenton area rather well.