Arguably the most iconic symbol on Sanibel Island is in need of repair, and island officials are pushing for a makeover.
In an attempt to refurbish the Sanibel Lighthouse, which has been standing since the end of the Civil War, the town has applied for a 2012 Special Category Grant from the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Historic Preservation, looking to clean up years of weathering to this area landmark.
As part of its application, Sanibel sought out local residents and vacationers and asked them to submit letters of support expressing the positive sentiments and importance of the lighthouse; what it means to the area and how it serves as a beacon of light, both literally and figuratively.
If it receives the grant, Sanibel would pay additional $100,000 for the fix-up, totaling a $270,000 renovation. If it does not receive the grant, an effort to give the lighthouse a face lift is still in the works – as the city plans to seek private donations to come up with the dollar amount they have applied to receive from the federal government. Clearly, the preservation of this lighthouse is a primary concern to everyone on Sanibel.
Just up the street from our Sanibel luxury vacation rental, Lighthouse Beach is a must-visit for anyone spending time in Sanibel Island. It’s home to an abundance of shells, a fishing pier, and even access to nature trails that take you though some of the island's natural wetlands. Learn more about the Sanibel lighthouse by visiting LighthouseFriends.com.
Will you be vacationing in the Sanibel Island area next month? Ever run in a road race? Friends in Service Here (FISH), a leading non-profit, non-sectarian, human services organization focused on “neighbors helping neighbors” on Sanibel and Captiva is hosting it’s second annual 10-K road race on Saturday, October 16th, and the entire community is encouraged to participate or simply cheer on runners in one of the fall's most important Sanibel events.
Fast becoming the organization's most influential fundraising event, the race is held along Sanibel Island roadways and is expected to draw more than 500 runners, comprised of year round residents, snow bunnies, and vacationers in town for the week.
The race begins and ends at the Sanibel Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, with a prompt 7:30 a.m. start time. FISH will be hosting an expo at the House from 7 a.m. to 12 noon with music and refreshments as part of the pre- and post-race festivities.
The entry Fee is $25.00 (pre-registration price) and Race Day registration is $30. Deadline for pre-registration is Friday, October 9 2010.
For more information on this road race that is growing in popularity, and helps fund a great local organization, visit www.fishofsanibel.com and www.ftmyerstrackclub.com.
Need something to do this Labor Day Weekend? With the forecast calling for sun and highs in the lower 90s, Sun Splash Family Waterpark in Cape Coral is the place to be.
The park will be open all holiday weekend with fun festivities for the entire family, highlighted by the inaugural Plastic Duck Race down the Mainstream River on Monday. Organizers are hoping to sell 1,000 ducks with proceeds going to the Cape Coral Special Populations Community.
Individuals can buy tickets to purchase ducks for $5 each, six for $25 or 12 for $50. They can be purchased at Sun Splash, Four Freedoms Park and the Frieda B. Smith Special Populations Center at any point throughout the weekend. Participants will simply place their duck in the stream and hope for the best, watching it float down against hundreds of hopeful competitors.
Prizes include four family passes for the 2011 Sun Splash season, and a round of golf at the Coral Oaks Golf Course.
For more information on all activities taking place at Sun Splash Waterpark this weekend, visit www.SunSplashWaterpark.com or call (239) 574-0558. If you're traveling from our Sanibel Island luxury vacation rental, you're just a 45-minute drive away.
A date has been set for one of the most anticipated annual events on Sanibel Island. Hosted by the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife, Inc. (CROW), the 29th annual Taste of the Islands will be held on November 21st from noon – 6 p.m. at Sanibel Community Park. The event will return after a one-year hiatus due to fiscal concerns, meaning the 2010 event is the result of an improved Southwest Florida economy.
Residents and vacationers have voted the Taste of the Islands as the “Best Island Event” for several years running now, as attendees flock to enjoy cuisines from the area’s best restaurants, dance to live music, and enjoy a recipe competition that pits local chefs in a friendly competition to create that perfect dish.
There will also be people’s choice awards for categories ranging from Best Vegetarian dish, to Best Meat and even most creative booth presentation.
Located at 2221 Periwinkle Way, the Sanibel Community Park is just a 15-minute bike ride from our Sanibel luxury vacation rental. We will be sure to keep you up to date with the latest participants and news as the event approaches.
Avid cyclists and casual bikers alike now have a newer, greener and safer way to visit Sanibel and Captiva Island.
Yesterday, after months of construction and $320,000 of stimulus money, Lee County elected leaders cut the ribbon on the widened bike-lane, added to the Sanibel Causeway through the toll plaza, giving bikers and pedestrians an easier and safer way to traverse to the Island. Changes included a widened bike-lane and shoulder, and elimination of forcing cyclists to merge with traffic at toll plazas on either end of the bridge, an often times dangerous act.
County officials’ overall mission for the newest bike path was to encourage visitors to keep their gas-guzzling motor vehicles on the main land, and help reduce traffic along the Causeway during busy seasons, all while promoting a more active lifestyle. Given the quaint setting that is Sanibel and Captiva Island, exploring the area by bike can often times be a much more rewarding and consecutive form of transportation, especially if you're just visiting for the day.
Have you taken a biking or walking trip over the new and improved Causeway? Share your experience with us. If you’re interested in visiting Sanibel or Captiva Island for the first time, learn more about Sanibel Island beaches, as many offer miles and miles of preserved bike paths for you to enjoy.
Whether you have vacationed at our Captiva or Sanibel Island luxury vacation rental
, spent a winter or two in the area, or live on one of the islands year round, you undoubtedly have your favorite spots to eat, shop and indulge from time-to-time.
Running now through the end of August is the "Best of The Islands" contest, which aims to garner a consensus favorite for 86 topics that fall under the following eight categories
So if you're in the area, be sure to to grab the latest copy of the Sanibel-Captiva Islander, Island Reporter, and Captiva Current and fill out your ballot to give your vote for your favorite island attractions and spots.
To learn more, visit CaptivaSanibel.com. The winners will be announced in September.
If you have ever visited Sanibel Island, you understand the incredible feeling of serenity that comes over you when crossing the Causeway.
It's not overpopulated with people and high-rise condo towers, allowing vacationers and even residents to feel cut of from the rest of the world...and love every second of it.
To affirm that belief, Sherman's Travel has named Sanibel's own Bowman Beach as the most secluded beach in the United States.
Per their website:
"The secret is out about the beauty of Sanibel Island’s linen-white sand beaches – situated about 25 miles southwest of Fort Myers, Florida – so you won’t be alone in searching for a stretch of a secluded U.S. beach to call your own. But that’s just what you’ll get when you leave your car and make the quarter-mile walk to Bowman’s Beach, Sanibel’s most peaceful place. The island is well-known as one of the best shelling spots in the country, but you’ll find little competition here. There’s minimal development and ditto on amenities – though Bowman’s does have one perk not found on any other beach on Sanibel: barbecue grills."
Well put, and hats off to those that frequent the beach. It's a distinction that "in-the-know" local beach goers should be lauded for; looking to embrace that feeling of isolation what soaking in the sun.
The City of Sanibel, Ding Darling and LeeTran have been awarded a $900,000 grant from the United States government to help improve traffic and transportation around the island. And according to WZVN in Fort Myers, city planners are considering investing in a solar-electric tram to accelerate travel times between the many attractions on Sanibel Island, and between neighboring Captiva.
Additionally, funding would go towards improving current walking and biking trails and providing the option for off-island parking, which day trippers could utilize by taking a quick ferry to Sanibel.
A spokesman for the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge says they will be hard at work with the city to brainstorm about two dozen ideas, and look to launch a pilot program by the end of next year.
Remember when Captiva Island’s South Seas Resort had nightlife? Well it’s back, with tonight’s grand reopening of the Holy Smoke Heavenly Barbecue and Better Burgers. Complete with a brand new pool hall and arcade, South Seas will celebrate the return of Holy Smoke tonight with live entertainment by Jeff Long. Long will begin nightly performances from 6 to 11 p.m. every Tuesday through Saturday until Labor Day.
The new pool hall, adjacent to the original Holy Smoke building, will also feature a full bar, an arcade, a dance floor and the only public pool tables on the island. Also, there will of course be dining space to enjoy Holy Smoke’s divine menu of barbecue cuisine. Be sure to take advantage of the Holy Smoke daily special — everything from 50-cent wings to $9 bucket of beer.
Holy Smoke will also be running special redemption advertisements in local newspapers and magazines to entice people to check out the new space. Stop by tonight and get $5 of free tokens or a free pitcher of beer.
The newest Captiva Island restaurant, Holy Smoke is located at Chadwick's Square at South Seas Island Resort (5400 Plantation Road, just a 20-minute drive from our luxury vacation rental). For more information about the new Holy Smoke, call them at (239) 472-7559, or visit their webpage.
Are you staying at our Sanibel Island luxury rental, and interested in snapping pictures of some of the colorful and unique wildlife on Sanibel Island? Check out this clip from this week's Island Sun...
"July 15 marks the opening of the annual 'Ding' Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest. The contest, sponsored by the 'Ding' Darling Wildlife Society- Friends of the Refuge (DDWS) and held in conjunction with “Ding” Darling Days, October 17 to 23, honors the birthday of Jay Norwood 'Ding' Darling, one of the foremost conservationists in American history and driving force behind the JN 'Ding' Darling National Wildlife Refuge (NWR).
Deadline for submission is 4 p.m. on September 15. For an entry form and other contest information, log on to www.dingdarlingsociety.org and click on 'Photo Contest,' or contact DDWS at firstname.lastname@example.org or (239) 472-1100, ext. 233.
Winners will be announced and awarded prizes at Conservation Art Day on Saturday, October 23. Entries may be delivered in person to JN 'Ding' Darling NWR or by mail to 'Ding' Darling Wildlife Society, One Wildlife Drive, Sanibel, FL 33957.
Only amateur photographers are eligible to enter. 'Ding' Darling Wildlife Society is a non-profit friends organization that supports environmental education and services for JN 'Ding' Darling NWR."