Story Tools

Date of Issue: February 11, 2009

Islanders share passion for people, places, moments

One legend has it that Valentine’s Day originated to commemorate the anniversary of the death of St. Valentine, a Roman clergyman who was executed on Feb. 14, about 270 A.D., for secretly marrying couples in defiance of the emperor.

Another legend has it that the holiday began as a Roman fertility festival.

Valentine’s Day American-style probably dates back to the early 1700s, when people exchanged handmade valentine cards.

Esther Howland is credited with selling the first mass-produced valentine card sometime in the 1840s, and a greeting card continues to be the most common way Americans observe the holiday.

The Islander, in celebration of Valentine’s Day, invited readers to share their passions by completing the sentence: “I love…”

Responses include:

  • Anna Maria resident Nancy Colcord: “I love to cross the bridge to Longboat Key at high noon under a cloudless sky and breath in the beauty of the pass; to share the community table at Minnie’s with visitors thrilled with the charm of Anna Maria Island; to gather with friends at Ginnie’s and Jane E’s as the city awakens from its nightly sleep; and to listen in as dedicated commissioners take on the task of governing a small island town. I love living on Anna Maria Island.”
  • Holmes Beach resident Len Tabicman: “I love walking on the beach with my wife almost every day, and never tiring of the natural beauty of the sand, the sky, the water, and, most of all, my wife.”
  • Holmes Beach resident Dantia Gould: “I love living on Anna Maria Island. I love being within a (long) stone’s throw of the beach. I love being able to have flowers blooming all year. I love doing things that help this wonderful community. I love the people I work and play with here. Most of all, I love my husband, Barry.”
  • Holmes Beach resident Ilona Kenrick: “I love sunrise, sunset, red wine and quiet time.… And Jeff.”
  • Anna Maria resident Betty Yanger: “I love to watch my young grandchildren run freely on the beach at sunset during the summer.”
  • Bradenton Beach resident Suzi Fox: “I love when sea turtle nesting starts. At the beginning of each season, I receive 10 to 15 phone calls at the first light of day each morning from the volunteers reporting on the nesting activity from the beach. They are so excited, especially when they spot a nesting mother. They whisper into the phone so not to disturb her.…There is such a sweetness to these conversations.”
  • Bradenton Beach resident Sam Fowler: “I love the way my wife curls up with a book in the sunshine, the first sip of a cold beer and fishing on the Bridge Street Pier with the sunrise.”
  • Holmes Beach resident Amelia Talucci: “I love when I see my kids smile and hear their laughter.”

Islander Becky Walters was hosting a group of children at her home one afternoon last week, and the gang decided to share their “I love…” thoughts:

  • Becky Walter: “I love a hot, hot day at the beach in the middle of July with friends and family.”
  • Jacob Talucci, 10: “I love candy.”
  • Annie Walter, 7: “I love bunnies.”
  • Joe Peery, 8: “I love The Islander.”
  • Tori Walter, 7: “I love bunnies.”
  • Jack Walter, 10: “I love my mom.”
  • Seth Walter, 9: “I love football.”
  • Austin Morrow, 10: “I love football.”
  • Hannah McCracken, 7: “I love bunnies.”
  • The Valadie children of Holmes Beach also worked as a group:
  • Maddy Valadie, 10: “I love Boots and Roscoe — my cats.”
  • Lance Valadie, 4: “I love you.”
  • Luke Valadie, 9: “I love my family.”


Humphrey Bogart starred with Ingrid Bergman in "Casablanca," the film that tops the American Film Institute's list of 100 greatest love stories.
Tune into romance

The American Film Institute’s list of “100 years…100 Passions” is a guide to some of the greatest love stories told in film.”

Many of the titles can be found through the Manatee County public library system and at local video stores. “How many can you fit into Valentine’s weekend?”

1. “Casablanca.”

2. “Gone With The Wind.”

3. “West Side Story.”

4. “Roman Holiday.”

5. “An Affair To Remember.”

6. “The Way We Were.”

7. “Doctor Zhivago.”

8. “It’s A Wonderful Life.”

9. “Love Story.”

10. “City Lights.”

11. “Annie Hall.”

12. “My Fair Lady.”

13. “Out Of Africa.”

14. “The African Queen.”

15. “Wuthering Heights.”

16. “Singin’ In The Rain.”

17. “Moonstruck.”

18. “Vertigo.”

19. “Ghost.”

20. “From Here To Eternity.”

21. “Pretty Woman.”

22. “On Golden Pond.”

23. “Now, Voyager.”

24. “King Kong.”

25. “When Harry Met Sally….”

26. “The Lady Eve.”

27. “The Sound Of Music.”

28. “The Shop Around The Corner.”

29. “An Officer And A Gentleman.”

30. “Swing Time.”

31. “The King And I.”

32. “Dark Victory.”

33. “Camille.”

34. “Beauty And The Beast.”

35. “Gigi.”

36. “Random Harvest.”

37. “Titanic.”

38. “It Happened One Night.”

39. “An American In Paris.”

40. “Ninotchka.”

41. “Funny Girl.”

42. “Anna Karenina.”

43. “A Star Is Born.”

44. “The Philadelphia Story.”

45. “Sleepless In Seattle.”

46. “To Catch A Thief.”

47. “Splendor In The Grass.”

48. “Last Tango In Paris.”

49. “The Postman Always Rings Twice.”

50. “Shakespeare In Love.”

51. “Bringing Up Baby.”

52. “The Graduate.”

53. “A Place In The Sun.”

54. “Sabrina.”

55. “Reds.”

56. “The English Patient.”

57. “Two For The Road.”

58. “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner.”

59. “Picnic.”

60. “To Have And Have Not.”

61. “Breakfast At Tiffany’s.”

62. “The Apartment.”

63. “Sunrise.”

64. “Marty.”

65. “Bonnie And Clyde.”

66. “Manhattan.”

67. “A Streetcar Named Desire.”

68. “What’s Up, Doc?.”

69. “Harold And Maude.”

70. “Sense And Sensibility.”

71. “Way Down East.”

72. “Roxanne.”

73. “The Ghost And Mrs. “Muir.”

74. “Woman Of The Year.”

75. “The American President.”

76. “The Quiet Man.”

77. “The Awful Truth.”

78. “Coming Home.”

79. “Jezebel.”

80. “The Sheik.”

81. “The Goodbye Girl.”

82. “Witness.”

83. “Morocco.”

84. “Double Indemnity.”

85. “Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing.”

86. “Notorious.”

87. “The Unbearable Lightness Of Being.”

88. “The Princess Bride.”

89. “Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?.”

90. “The Bridges Of Madison County.”

91. “Working Girl.”

92. “Porgy And Bess.”

93. “Dirty Dancing.”

94. “Body Heat.”

95. “Lady And The Tramp.”

96. “Barefoot In The Park.”

97. “Grease.”

98. “The Hunchback Of Notre Dame.”

99. “Pillow Talk.”

100. “Jerry Maguire.”