Do you know of this little gem just off the causeway in Fort Myers?
The Crackerbox was recently named one of the “Best Sanibel Area Restaurants” by Food Critic Jean Le Bouef of the Fort Myers News-Press when listing restaurants that are “beloved by us locals for being good, reasonable and oh-so-close to our beautiful beaches.”
JLB writes: “Time hasn’t been kind to Fort Myers’ second-oldest restaurant. This 56-year-old cottage has been flooded and wind-beaten, but man, is it a classic. Go for the live music and the cold beer and the same family that’s been behind Crackerbox almost since its 1962 start.”
The Crackerbox is located at 16910 McGregor Blvd. in South Fort Myers. For more information, call 239-466-4334 or check them out on Facebook!
If your family is headed to Sanibel Island this summer, be sure to check out the ever-popular Summer Arts Camp at BIG ARTS!
BIG ARTS Summer Arts Camp offers a fun, unique and well-rounded program of visual and performing arts for 1st – 5th graders.
Each week begins a new session with a new theme. Throughout the week, campers create art projects that correspond with that week’s theme, as well as participate in music and theater classes. On Fridays, each weekly session concludes with a short program featuring a display of camper artwork and a performance of what they’ve learned in their music and theater classes.
The sure-to-be-fun themes this summer include:
- Superheroes Assemble!
- Futuristic Fun
- Welcome to the Jungle
- Spirit Week
- BIG ARTS Summer Camp’s Got Talent
- Pack Your Passport!
There is also an apprentice program for 6th – 12th graders. During the first half of the summer camp program (June 11-29), middle and high school apprentices have the opportunity to earn community services hours by assisting campers in their classes. Apprentices may volunteer for the full camp day (9am-3pm) or choose to volunteer during the morning or afternoon only. During the second half of the summer camp program (July 9-27), BIG ARTS will be offering art classes to middle and high school apprentices, in addition to the opportunity to earn community service hours. Apprentices may choose to do both volunteering and classes, volunteer only, or participate in class only.
Classes for the apprentice age group include:
- The Art of Upcycling
- Drawing to Painting
- Sculpting with Unconventional Materials
For registration forms and more information, call 239-395-0900 or click here, and let the summer fun begin!
Perhaps not the photo you were expecting to see today?
We just wanted to remind you that your vacation to Southwest Florida doesn’t have to be all about our gorgeous coastline. There are so many interesting places to visit in the region and all are easy day trips from Ocean’s Reach.
On your next visit down, for example, you may want to check out Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm and learn all about sustainable farming.
Rosy Tomorrows was founded by Rose O’Dell King. Her experiences as a former sheep farmer, French Culinary Institute trained chef, certified Sommelier, and food and wine columnist have all taught Rose that good food depends on good ingredients, and “it is only the very best ingredients with the very best provenance that make the very best dishes.”
After searching for almost a year, Rose discovered a 100-acre property with beautiful vistas in North Fort Myers that would become Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm.
“I created Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm with a mission of raising the very best food—organically, holistically, sustainably, humanely, and as close to nature as possible,” she says.
Rose invites you to come visit and experience a true working farm in all its sustainable glory. As Rose puts it: “See the laying hens, the majestic longhorn cows, baby calves, and piglets! Feed organic alfalfa to the miniature donkeys and Jersey dairy cows. You can enjoy a delicious brunch based on the bounty of the farm and served with handmade beverages, local craft beer, or delicious wines. Sit out on the patio or in the picturesque dining room, read the newspaper, and, of course, pick up your weekly provisions of pastured meats, poultry, and eggs.”
The farm is open Thursdays and Fridays from 9am – 3pm, and on Saturdays from 11am – 3pm. RSVPs are required, so call 239-567-6000 or head to their website for more information.
It’s time for peanuts and crackerjacks and good times with island friends!
Join us tomorrow night when we commemorate the 25th anniversary of one of Sanibel’s most beloved traditions: Sam Bailey’s Islands Night at Hammond Stadium.
Islands Night began in 1993 by beloved islander Sam Bailey as a way to celebrate the special community we have on Sanibel and Captiva. It’s become a night for us to kick back and enjoy a baseball game with friends, neighbors, and business partners while giving back to our island communities. Proceeds from Islands Night benefit the Sam Bailey Scholarship Fund along with select area non-profits. Over the past two decades, Islands Night has raised more than $150K in donations.
The family-fun event begins tomorrow night with a grand parade followed by a baseball game hosted by our hometown team, the Fort Myers Miracle. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and the parade begins at 5:50 p.m. The Miracle team takes the field at 6:35 p.m. against the Charlotte Stone Crabs.
If you still need tickets, pick yours up — free of charge — at our front desk. See you at the ballpark!
First-time visitors Mary C. and Andy P. from Natick, MA, were kind enough to send along this photo of some “baby” sand dollars they found in the waters in front of Ocean’s Reach (before gently returning them back to the sea).
They were thrilled with their visit here and the opportunity to learn so much about our incredible sealife.
And sand dollars are indeed quite incredible. Did you know:
— In their sandy seafloor habitat, sand dollars use their fuzzy spines, aided by tiny hairs (cilia), to ferry food particles along their bodies to a central mouth on their bottom side. Sand dollars also breathe through their spines. They lose their spines soon after they die, so that’s why the sand dollars typically found on shore are smooth, hard and bleached white by the sun.
— In rough waters, sand dollars really don’t have a good way to prevent themselves from being tossed around. Adult sand dollars are heavy enough that they simply lie flat and cling to the ocean floor, but juvenile sand dollars learn to swallow grains of sand to give themselves added weight.
— A sand dollar is a notoriously slow eater. Their mouth has a jaw with five teeth-like sections to grind up food, which it may do for up to 15 minutes before they swallow. It can take the sand dollar up to two days to digest its food.
— Like counting the rings on a tree stump, scientists age a sand dollar specimen by simply counting the rings in the sand dollars’ exoskeleton. They don’t have to count high — sand dollars usually live six to 10 years.
And down the stretch they come!
Enjoy “The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports” at Fort Myers’ inaugural “Down & Derby” party from 3:00 – 7:00pm today on the back lawn of the historic Heitman House along the beautiful Caloosahatchee River.
Hosted by HelloSWFL, this Kentucky Derby-themed party and social event should be just the right mix of fun and flair, with stellar fashion, food and entertainment. There will even be a Hat & Dapper Contest awarding those partygoers who don the most out-of-this-world derby attire and headwear.
For more information on this lively charitable event, click here.
Avid shell seekers know that, some days, they’ll come away
with nothing but a lesson in patience and perseverance.
Other days, their faith will be rewarded with
more than they ever hoped for.
Should you have any photos you’d like to share, please email them to Dina@OceansReach.com.