My morning walk starts at Gulf Side City Park Trail located just steps from Ocean’s Reach. You will find this great trail by walking or riding down Camino del Mar onto the shared use path. Proceed eastward towards the Sanibel Lighthouse as the path winds toward Middle Gulf Road and past the historic cemetery. You’ll see it on the left. It is well marked and has a bike path and an educational display. The trail is approx. 1/2 mile long, just perfect for a leisurely morning stroll.
I did a double take when I saw juggler #2 on Sanibel. Must be a new Sanibel pastime!
Meet Juggling Jeff! He entertains the family dining crowds Wednesday and Friday nights at the popular and newly opened “Biddles Bucket”. I have yet to verify their promised “Best Crunchy Grouper on the Islands” but they do pack the families in for dinner! They also have buckets of family games that can be picked up at the hostess station to play on the dining tables while you wait!
Hopefully, by the time you arrive, I will have taste tested the crunchy grouper unless somebody out there has already beat me to it. Can anybody let me know about their crunchy grouper sandwich? How many calories, etc?? Just kidding…
Tuesday, March 3, 2009, was Voting Day on Sanibel Island. There were many issues involved and we hope to shed some light on them, along with the results, here at Ocean’s Reach Blog.
THREE IMPORTANT ISSUES:
The first is a set of three questions that the Sanibel-Captiva chamber of Commerce posed to each of the candidates. You can view these questions by clicking HERE.
WILDLIFE PRESERVATION ISSUE
An advocate for preserving our preserved lands awaits voters on Sanibel. Read about the important wildlife preservation referendum that Sanibel voters weigh in on Tuesday. For the complete details read on.
This sign is located on the north side of Island Inn Road a half mile from Tarpon Bay Road. It marks the boundary of the Sanibel Gardens Preserve. The last sentence reads, “This preserve is dedicated to the citizens of Sanibel and their foresight in protecting and restoring the rare barrier island freshwater wetlands along the Sanibel River.” (The legend in the lower right corner of the map is covering a portion of the Bailey Tract).
The white circle (added to this photo) indicates the approximate location of the proposed dog park. The entire Sanibel Gardens Preserve was purchased using your tax dollars and restored with the funding assistance of SCCF, The City of Sanibel, The Dept. of Environmental Protection, National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Partners for Fish and Wildlife.
On Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009 you were being asked by a special interest group to vote “yes” to the permanent removal of acreage from within this preserve. In addition to this historic precedent, the traffic, noise, odor and chemicals of this dog park would negatively impact the Sanibel Gardens Preserve, the Malcolm Beattie Preserve, the Marie Fisher-Craig Tract and The Bailey Tract of the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Preserve as well as the peaceful ambiance of Island Inn Road.
If these referenda pass, the voters of Sanibel will be handing over the use of 1.45 acres, free of charge, to a well-monied, well-organized Political Action Committee determined to take this acreage away from the creatures we purchased it for -the gopher tortoises, red-shouldered hawks, marsh rabbits, spartina grass, butterflies and countless others – and make it a county wide destination for pets.
Please understand that this area is neither a burn site nor a subdivision. IT IS A PRESERVE! Take a bike ride down Island Inn Road and read this sign for yourself. For the future of Sanibel and the dangerous precedent this will establish as well as for the wildlife we so love, please vote “NO” to both referenda on Tuesday. Then write or e-mail the City Council, SCCF and the City Manager’s Office and ask them to restore the former emergency burn site to its pre-hurricane condition and NEVER LET THIS HAPPEN AGAIN!
Concerned Sanibel Residents.
Now the Results!
The headlines and following article as in all Island newspapers today reads
INCUMBENTS SWEEP CITY COUNCIL ELECTION
In Tuesday’s City Council election, a stunning 54 percent of island voters turned out and re-elected Mick Denham, Kevin Ruane and Marty Harrity following a heated campaign between the three incumbents and two challengers, Dr. David Berger and David Bath.
Denham, the city’s current mayor, received more than 27 percent (2,259 votes) of the total vote, followed by Ruane (nearly 23.5 percent, or 1,912 votes) and Harrity (20.6 percent, or 1,678 votes).
A former Planning Commissioner, Dr. Berger garnered almost 15.5 percent (1,254 votes) of the votes, followed by Bath’s 12.8 percent (1,042 votes).
In the two referendums proposed on the ballot, Sanibelians rejected an exchange of environmental lands swap for use as a dog park, with 52 percent – or 1,517 votes – against the idea.
Also, another referendum proposing an exchange of land owners in Sanibel Gardens was overwhelmingly approved at 69 percent (or 1,983 votes).
Meet Holly Moulder as she sits on the porch of the Sanibel Bookshop located on Periwinkle Way . Holly is the author ofÂ “A Cord of Three Strands”, which is soon to be released as a movie. If at all possible, purchase a copy and read before it comes out. It is a remarkable story set in 1838 about a young 13 year-old Cherokee Indian boy named John, and his journey on the march of the forced removal of the Cherokee Indians to the Oklahoma Territory. This march was to become known as the Trail of Tears. A 12 year-old runaway slave girl named Annie is headed North to freedom by the way of the Underground Railroad. How the two meet and later become involved with Abraham Lincoln, a lawyer, who would become the President of the United States is a riveting tale for all ages.
This is the second book Holly Moulder has written. The first one is titled “Eyes of the Calusa” and tells of a young Calusa Indian girl named Mara. Her story begins as a normal little girl living the life of her day, until she is captured by pirates and continuing with her amazing story of survival with the pirates, being sold as a slave at the Slave Auction and all the while struggling to escape to freedom.
Holly Moulder taught elementary school in Newnan, Georgia for 21 years and lives with her husband Don, in Sharpsburg, Georgia.
Be sure to stop by the Sanibel Bookshop to pick up copies of these two books and while you are there, take the time to browse the over 25,000 other titles. The Sanibel Bookshop is a great place to spend any free time.
Ask about the history of the beautiful handcrafted bowl Holly is proudly displaying!
Alas–arrival on Sanibel. After counting the days, our guests have deplaned. The moment their vacation starts is when they sniff the warm, still, damp air walking out the airport doors.
Forty-five minutes later after baggage claim and rental car pick up—over the causeway they come. Leave your cares and woes behind at the toll booth (and the $6 fee). It costs $6 to get onto the island but so worth it. So plan carefully. If you want to stop for groceries or supplies ahead of arriving at Ocean’s Reach, there are many Publix grocery stores, a Walmart, Lowes, CVS and Walgreens along the way.
If you make these stops before the tollway, your car is now really full. Don’t leave the kids behind!!
If not, Baileys and Jerry’s are two full service grocery stores on Sanibel Island. They also deliver and stock your condo for you with groceries and beverages. Life is a breeze–especially for your late night arrivals. A midnight snack or light breakfast in the morning is waiting for you on your schedule.
Finally when you arrive home at Ocean’s Reach, it can take hours or minutes to get settled in your cozy beachfront condominium depending on how fast and organized you are. Ocean’s Reach has luggage carts, shopping carts, ramps, small steps and elevators to help you make your way.
A recent trend is shipping ahead your clothing and supplies. Our guests just might find their shipped boxes waiting for them in their condo when they arrive!! Just another bonus to having on-site Guest Services!
Another trend is reserving bicycles and beach umbrellas ahead of arrival through Guest Services. Your bicycle order will be conveniently parked in your assigned parking space upon your arrival. All set. Ready. Go.
Most importantly, all condos are fully equipped for your enjoyable stay. A starter package of paper items, detergent, soap and more is provided in your condo. A washer and dryer is provided in every condo for recycling your beachwalking clothes and bathing suits.
Remember that you are on vacation. Keep it simple. That’s the way life is on the beach at Ocean’s Reach.
Dru Anne Doyle
Ocean’s Reach Condominiums Resort
Dave Herrick, MA
Three generations of Merels in three condos at Ocean’s Reach. First came Mike and Nancy. Then came Jennifer and Nina. Soon after, Jennifer, Zachary, Hannah, Jeremy, Natasha and Jane joined their parents and their grandparents.
Ocean’s Reach was the site of the annual family reunion for this family that gathered together from Chicago and NY.
We love to see them vacation on the beach as they have the most fun of any of our guests. They love spending time with each other on the beach and so they reserve their 3 condos side by side by side on the first floor. The easy walkout from the condos directly to the beach keeps this family active with no need to leave Ocean’s Reach during their stay except for this rare day out on the popular bicycle paths. What a feat to get the Merel Group outfitted with their helmets, bike shoes and adjustable seats! I hope they were able to pedal to Pinoccchio’s for Sanibel Krunch ice cream! It is a great motivator for kids of all generations!
Scottsdale has one. So does Chicago, Miami and Carmel, IN!
Grab a sip and walk along the beach of Sanibel and see the wild, wacky and wonderful art images along the way.
You will be amused and amazed at the creative sculptures of sand, shell and found objects.
It is always a pleasant surprise any time of the day to spot these wonderful finds.
Serious sculptors enjoy participating in the Sandsculpting Championship Festival on Fort Myers Beach every November.
Submit your sandy art finds for Ocean’s Reach’s online photo art gallery.
Everyone has their favorite Sanibel shell and mine has changed over time. I once was entranced with olives – their shape, the shiny surface, the variety of markings. I collected enough to have a “jar of olives” which sits on the counter in my kitchen. Gin, anyone?
But I have moved on. Now, I’m smitten by the sunray venus. I have several in various sizes and colorations and like the sunrise, or a Sanibel sunset, everyone is individual. I’m wondering what shells are the favorite of other Sanibel visitors.
Judith A. Jaastad
The Olive Shell
The Sunray Venus
Every March the annual Sanibel Shell Fair Show is held on Sanibel Island. It is sponsored by the Sanibel Community Association and the Sanibel-Captiva Shell Club. This year the Show begins on March 5th and ends on the 7th. For more details please visit the Bailey-Mathews Shell Museum website for times and location or the Sanibel Community House website.
Photos are courtesy of the Bailey-Mathews Shell Museum photo gallery.
On the entrance road to Sanibel just before the toll booth, a family of Ospreys have established a two story townhouse on the frame work of an overhead sign.
The Osprey obviously have no problems adapting to unique home sites on and around the island.
For tourists and residents alike entering Sanibel, this has become a topic of interest and observation.
Be sure and take a look the next time you are crossing, and join the fun.