Boat Tours to Mound Key

    Around and About the Island

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    Fort Myers Beach is open for business! Take a look at the events listed here and be sure to pick up a copy of the September issue of SAND LIFE magazine with a calendar listing of all the fun things to do on the beach PLUS Live Music schedules for over 20 venues.

    FOOD DRIVE

    The Surf Club will host a Food Drive to benefit Beach Baptist Church’s effort to feed Irma victims in Fort Myers Beach and Immokalee. Bring non-perishable food items to the Surf Club starting Friday, September 22. Live Music/Open Mic begins at 6pm. If you can’t stop Friday night, you can bring your food donations to the Surf anytime next week.

    CHILD PROOF YOUR LIFE

    On TU Sept 26 from 10-11am,Chapel by the Sea is offering a free program, open to anyone, on how to create a safe and fun space for grandchildren. A variety of topics will be discussed, led by Jamie Hoover, Child Advocacy Program Coordinator for Lee Health. Topics include: play it safe by the water, proper car seat installation, bike and helmet sizing, medicine storage, sleeping positions and surroundings for infants/toddlers. 239-463-3173 x20

    SHORT TERM RENTAL MEETING

    The Town of Fort Myers Beach will host a special Town Hall meeting on WE, Sept. 27 at 6pm in Town Hall to provide an opportunity for residents to discuss their suggestions and concerns about the current Short Term Rentals regulations and any needed amendments. The meeting will not be televised or web-streamed. All are welcome. For questions, call Town Hall 239-765-0202.

    BOAT TOURS TO MOUND KEY

    The Mound House will host ten boat tours to Mound Key starting October 4, from 12:30-3:45pm. The tour leaves port from Fish Tale Marina aboard the Estero Bay Express for an exclusive experience including a visit to the Mound House and then onto Mound Key, Capital of the Calusa. Learn the rich history of the Calusa as well as new findings scientists are discovering about this ancient society. Guest will disembark and hike the trails of Mound Key. Along the way, discover the ecology of Estero Bay. This trip requires walking over rough terrain. $55/person; Members $50. Reservations required. Call 239-765-0865 for reservations. Additional dates include: Oct. 15, Nov 3 & 13; Jan 30, Feb 13 & 27; Mar 13 & 28, Apr 3.

    reFRESH Estero Blvd.

    Crews began milling the beach side of Estero Blvd from Madera Rd to Aberdeen Ave this week. This milling is done to prepare for paving to widen the roadway so crews can install a sanitary sewer force main on the bay side. Two lanes of traffic will be open during the milling. Motorists accessing side streets may experience delays. For more information visit refreshFMBeach.com or call 239-337-1071

    CRISIS CLEAN UP HOTLINE

    If you know someone that needs help over the next few weeks with debris removal, muck out work or tree cutting, please call 1-800-451-1954, the Disaster Relief Hotline for Hurricane Irma. Over 70 volunteer organizations will be in SWFL in the coming weeks to help. This is a free service. Spread the word.

    DEBRIS PICK UP

    Lee County Solid Waste asks if your property is ready for storm debris collection trucks? Disaster debris crews have begun collecting yard waste in other parts of Lee County. Unfortunately, some households have mixed plastic bags and other debris with the yard waste in front of their homes. Those piles cannot be collected until those materials are separated. Residents are asked to ensure that their piles of yard waste contain only yard waste – tree branches, shrubs, palm fronds, etc. Yard waste does not include fencing, decorative borders or any other structural material. Tree stumps larger than 24” in diameter need to be placed in a separate pile and will be collected separately. Spoiled food should be double bagged and placed with regular trash. Keep all piles away from power lines, power poles, fire hydrants, water meters and mailboxes. For more info visit bit.ly/Irmadebris

    BUSINESS LOANS

    The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering SBA loans to Irma-impacted businesses. Loans of up to $2 million to repair or replace real estate, inventory and other assets. SBA also offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. These are available whether the business suffered any physical property damage or not. For more information visit DisasterAssistance.gov.

     The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is offering Emergency Bridge Loans of up to $25,000 for 6 months for Hurricane Irma effected businesses. Designed to bridge the gap between a disaster and when longer term recovery resources are available. Applications are available through October 31, 2017. For more information visit FloridaDisasterLoan.org.

    TAPA HOP

    While most participating restaurants are open and ready for business, the Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce wanted to give everyone a bit more time to recover from Hurricane Irma. The 15th annual Tapa Hop has been postponed until until Tuesday, November 14. Tickets already purchased will be honored for the new date. If you cannot attend, and already have purchased tickets, the chamber will refund your ticket. If you haven’t purchased tickets to this great event, what are you waiting for? Help support our recovery effort on the beach by supporting our island restaurants! See you on the trolleys! Please contact the Chamber with any questions: events@fmbchamber.com or 239-314-7701 x102.

    FEMA ASSISTANCE

    Lee County residents with losses due to Hurricane Irma may apply for individual disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) by registering at disasterassistance.gov. If unable to register online or through the FEMA app, call
    800-621-3362. Applicants will need their Social Security number, a daytime telephone number, current mailing address and address of damaged property and private insurance information, if any.

    HURRICANE RELIEF CENTER

    Catholic Charities has announced a number of hurricane relief centers in SWFL. They are all in need of water, non-perishable food, home cleaning supplies and volunteers. Show up or contact the center closest to you to help. The closest one to FMB is in Bonita Springs at St. Leo the Great Parish, 28290 Beaumont Rd, Bonita Springs. 239-390-2928, Contact person: Chuck Anderson, Cell 239-738-8678. www.catholiccharitiesdov.org

    WATER QUALITY

    The Post-Irma beach water quality test results are in and all Lee County beaches passed! For details on beach water testing by the State Dept. of Health – Lee County visit bit.ly/beachesLee

    PAINT THE BEACH

    The Eighth annual Paint the Beach Art Festival to be held Nov. 6-12, 2017, is accepting artist registrations now through Sept 30. The Festival will be held Nov 6-12 and includes artists from across the country that will capture the beauty, light and texture of the local landscape. The three-day art competition will be followed by a two-day sale at Santini Marina Plaza. The Quick Draw competition will be held on SA Nov 11 and will include high school artists. $6,000 in prizes will be awarded. Two divisions for Juried and Emerging artists. Max 60 artists. Quick draw has a 30 artist limit. Registration and event information is available now at www.PainttheBeach.com.

    PROTECT OUR TURTLES

    It’s turtle nesting season on our beach. Please do your part to protect the turtles, nests and hatchlings when they emerge! Shield your lights so that they are not visible from anywhere on the beach. Better yet, replace existing bulbs with Amber LED bulbs! Find lights here: bit.ly/turtlelites. Stack or remove beach furniture. Remove beach litter. Keep pets on a leash. Stay far away from any turtles or marked nests you may encounter! Fill in any holes you dig in the sand. Please remember, your actions can mean life or death to endangered sea turtles! Report injured turtles by calling Turtle Time at 239-481-5566. Turtletime.org