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Beware Holmes Beach: Privateers run this town

By Kathy Prucnell, Islander Reporter

Anna Maria Island Privateer Tim “Hammer” Thompson lays down pirate’s law to Holmes Beach city commissioners at a Dec. 13 work session. Islander Photo: Kathy Prucnell

Holmes Beach Mayor Rich Bohnenberger was given “fair warning” at a Dec. 13 city meeting.

        “Privateers run this town,” Tim “Hammer” Thompson told the commission, wielding a hammer and pointing to the mayor. “Our demands will be met or you will pay!”

        The Anna Maria Island Privateer decreed that the mayor will be shackled to the Skullywag and held for ransom on Dec. 30 at 3:45 p.m.

        Among the Privateers’ demands are a key to the city, a proclamation in support of the Privateers, and a $1,000 ransom.

        Thompson is the Privateers’ 40th anniversary events coordinator. He said that the ransom would be reached with community donations to be collected at the close of the business day Dec. 30.

        He added that the mayor’s release from the Skullywag, or his continued capture — depending on one’s political bent — has the ransom as its fundraising goal.

        The capture is one of more than 75 events organized in 2011 by the Privateers in support of its scholarships and community programs, including the Christmas and Fourth of July parades on the Island.

        Thompson said $29,000 in scholarships were given this year to 15 area students to further their education in their selected fields.

        The Privateers’ city captures have taken place across the Island to celebrate its 40th year as a nonprofit community organization with a motto of “Kids and Community.” Mayor Mike Selby of Anna Maria and former Bradenton Beach Mayor Bob Bartelt were held for ransom by the AMIP in January and July.

        After the Dec. 30 capture and ransom collection in Holmes Beach, the Privateers will celebrate with food and grog, as well as a champagne toast courtesy of The Islander to conclude the 40th year celebration.

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