Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Principal For the Day

Coastal Comments

You must be getting into the season of things, because we have lots of stuff going on everywhere we look. And look at the Coastal Breeze! They are so good they have to expand to a once-a-week publication! Now that’s success. but now I’ll mention a few things you might be interested in seeing. This past Saturday, the Marco Island Florist (located on S. Barfield Drive) again hosted their annual Holidays are Magical, and the theme continues on ‘til Christmas. I “dropped in” to see the magnificent decorations and great gift ideas that are always displayed over the entire store, and if you’ve never been there, you MUST make it a point to get there now. It’s a place where you can find lovely, elegant, delightful items for the home, the decorating, the gifts, and yourself. You don’t want to miss this amazing place. It’s worth driving over the bridge too, East Naples residents! Goodland and Capri have already found it, but E. N. people will be surprised and thrilled to see all the terrific things and gift ideas right there in one place and so close! Men… you’ll be happy with the ideas you can find as well. And they even sell wine, cheese spreads, Norman Love candies, and on and on. Yes, I went a little overboard, but I found stuff for a hard to-buy-for-daughter, gifts for office friends and girlfriends. I stopped for a “half hour,” which turned out to be about two hours.

While talking about great things on Marco that everyone should try, even from the other side of the bridge, you MUST try the lobster tails at the Old Marco Pub at 1105 Bald Eagle Drive…and they are only – – wait till you hear this – – $26.95 for two large Maine lobster tails! Their chef cooks them perfectly! They don’t come out partially cooked or overcooked, but PERFECT! Right now the special is on Wednesday and Thursday, but the owner advised me that they will begin offering them Monday through Thursday by the time you read this in the newspaper. I just figured at that price they would be small, or have extra costs for the sides, but there’s no such thing. They are beautiful Maine lobster tails, potato, salad, and vegetable, plus bread and butter, and of course they have a full bar and take all credit cards, so come on over to the other side of the bridge. You’ll be glad you did. It might be a good idea to call first to make reservations. And oh by the way, the service is friendly and timely.

For those of you who attended the Woodstock 50th Anniversary Party fundraiser for the Friends of the Museum at the Main Museum at the Collier Government Center, the music was outstanding and performed by the group Galaxy, whom I had never heard before, but I’d go to hear them again and again! They were terrific. And the audience really got into it big time, with headbands, wire rimmed glasses, bell bottoms, authentic blankets, etc. There was a couple there who were actually at the Woodstock event that original night! One lady who has collected items and blankets over the years regarding Woodstock, displayed many of them, and the music was so good that people were dancing on the grass at night (there were some lights) all dressed up like they were at the real event, and the couples really seemed to be into each other!

Veteran’s Day was better than ever, but then we feel that way every year. Each year they seem to get better, but then again, we are so blessed that we are here to honor these great heroes who fought for our freedom and lived to be an example of what it is to be an American! This is such a patriotic time of year, and we all need to stand up with thanks to all of these veterans. I wanted to mention all of the people we worked with who planned and worked so hard to make this happen, but I’m afraid I might forget someone or leave someone out, and rather than do that, I want to thank all of them.

About that same time there was another Honor Flight that flew retired veterans from Vietnam, Korea, WW II, and Marine Memorials to Washington D.C. to see the Changing of the Guard at Arlington Cemetery and the Vietnam Wall among the many memorials to be seen. If you ever have a chance to volunteer to help with one of these flights, you’ll be so glad you made the effort. You’ll never forget the experience. I promise you that. As I thought back to last year, I remember Herb Savage, with Emily at his side, standing tall at the Veteran’s Day Program, and the two of them singing a patriotic song together. I doubt anyone will forget Herb for a long time to come. Thankfully we still have Emily with us to participate. Her smile still radiates!

I felt honored to be asked to serve as Principal for the day at Lely High School and also for Shadowlawn Elementary School. I participated at Lely during the morning, and went to Shadowlawn in the afternoon. It was a great experience! I’ve been to both schools many times over the years, even after my kids graduated, and especially now as a Commissioner… although I have no reason to be there as a Commissioner, the school never turns its back on me. I want to see things for myself, I don’t want anyone to tell me what their opinion is, so I go and participate with the classrooms on occasion. I know MIA is the Marco Island high school that most support, but there are hundreds of Marco Island kids who go to Lely as well, but seem to be forgotten. Why do they go there? With the Flight School turning out pilots, it’s a great draw, and you probably read the story about the Lely pilot who used the teacher’s own plane to fly a number of flights to the Bahamas with supplies the students had gathered for the hurricane victims. Also, there were a couple Black Hawk students who had graduated from Lely and will come back to visit on occasion. Their Engineering School gives them a head start for college. They have a fascinating medical section that gives general instruction on classes to students who would like to go into the medical field, but first they need to discover what field most interests them. One section studies veterinarians, another x-rays, etc., and then another – blood diseases and more. I think there were 10 completely different phases to familiarize themselves with before focusing a little closer on what they would like to study.

And Goodland did it again! They had a great Craft Show for all to attend, and it also was a lot of fun to see old friends and meet new ones.

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