Mound House Kayak EcoTours Begin, Countdown to Christmas

    Around and About the Island

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    Looking for something to do on and around Fort Myers Beach?

    Check out our Around & About the Island page, and be sure to pick up your copy of the December SAND LIFE Magazine for a complete list of what’s happening on the beach.

    COMMUNITY CHRISTMAS

    Santini Marina Plaza presents the 6th Annual Community Christmas Celebration & Artisan/Fresh Market on SA, Dec 17 from 10am-2pm featuring the carols of Christmas with the Lehigh Acres Children’s Choir. The Island’s favorite karaoke DJ, Brenda Berringer will host Holiday Karaoke from 10am-2pm, with the Children’s Choir performing at 11:30am. Donations of new, unwrapped teddy bears are requested for needy children in our area. At noon the ABATE Motorcycle Club of SWFL will roar into Santini Marina Plaza to retrieve the Teddy Bear Donations. So, bring your Teddy Bears to the Teddy Bear Booth before noon and stay for the Christmas Carols and last minute shopping at the market and great shops of Santini Marina Plaza.

    For more information call Bonnie: 239-443-8810

     BIKE NIGHT

    On SA Dec 17th from 5-10pm Bootlegger’s will host it’s monthly bike night, Bikers from all SWFL are invited to take a ride to the waterfront for live music, biker games with prizes and more. Admission is free. This month a holiday toy drive will benefit Toys for Tots. Each guest over 21 years of age who brings a new unopened and unwrapped towy will receive a free beer. Biker games are free and include slow races, tennis ball grab and more. Live music by Electric Mud.

     HOLIDAY EXPRESS

    The Railroad Museum of South Florida and Train Village at Lakes Regional Park, 7330 Gladiolus Drive, Fort Myers, is featuring the Holiday Express from Dec. 16-30. The Express runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. MO-FR; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. SA & SU. Fares are $5 for passengers 6 years old and older, and free for children 1 to 5 years old. Children must be at least a year old to ride. Santa will be in the village through Dec. 23. The train will be closed Christmas Eve from 6 to 9 p.m. and all day Christmas.

    HOLIDAY ART SALE

    The Fort Myers Beach Art Association’s annual holiday show & sale, Art Divine, at the FMBAA’s gallery on the corner of Shell Mound and Donora continues through Jan 12. There will be a variety of pieces available – both framed and unframed priced at or below $150. Gallery is open Monday-Saturday from 10am-3pm. The gallery will be closed Dec 24, 25, 31 and Jan 1. 239-463-3909.

    WINTER CONCERT SERIES

    This year’s Fort Myers Beach Friends of the Arts Winter Concert Series is going to be is better than ever. The Friends, whose mission is to promote and support theater, music, culinary and visual arts on Fort Myers Beach and the surrounding community with a vision to make the arts on Fort Myers Beach accessible for all to enjoy and discover, look forward to offering some great entertainment beginning next month. In early 2017 former member of 50’s and 60’s group, The Platters, Al Holland and Friends will perform on January 26. February 24 means it’s time to catch a wave with coastal sounds of Beach Boys-related California Surf, Inc. Demand for this Naples-based, father and son led-band, Paul Todd and Paul Todd, Jr. brings them back to the Island on March 30. Finally, to bring it on home will be the first ever Southwest Florida appearance of the Atlantic City Boys singing the crooning tunes of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons on April 20.

    Tickets are $25 are available now or if purchased by Dec. 31, get 10% off a 4-pack of tickets. For more information or to buy tickets, please visit friendsoftheartsfmb.com, call (239) 463- 3600 or connect with Fort Myers Beach Friends of the Arts on Facebook. All shows will be held from 7 – 9 p.m. at the Fish-Tale Marina Propeller Lounge at 7225 Estero Blvd., Fort Myers Beach.

    KAYAK ECO-TOUR

    Explore the winding mangrove creeks and hidden backwaters of Estero Bay as only a kayaker can. Join this unique eco-tour guided by Dexter Norris, biologist, naturalist and Mound House Environmental Educator. Experience the abundant natural beauty of the ancient realm of the Calusa in a tandem kayak as you paddle the Estero and Hell Peckney bays. Tours conducted as per Florida Society of Ethical Ecotourism guidelines. Offered WE Dec 28 and SA Dec 31 from 9am-12pm. Cost $45/person (museum admission included). Members $15. All equipment provided. Water shoes required. Must be over age 12 and able to swim, walk over rough terrain and get in and out of a kayak and paddle for up to 3 hours. Children 12 and older must be accompanied by parent/guardian. Reservations required-call 239-765-0865.

    SHRIMP PRINCESSES

    It’s time to apply to participate in the Fort Myers Beach 59th Shrimp Festival Queen Pageant! Young ladies age 16-20 are eligible to apply. Participation includes awards and prizes, social events, a ride atop of a Corvette convertible in the Shrimp Festival parade, pageant gift bags and community service hours for school. The Queen receives a $500 college scholarship. Applicants can enter with their own sponsor or the Lions Club will provide one. Deadline to enter is January 15, 2017. For more information and an application go to FMBShrimpFestival.com or contact Pageant Coordinator Tracey Gore 239-849-3603 or
    t-gore@comcast.net.

    MOUND HOUSE

    Mound House is a unique archaeological and historical site on Fort Myers Beach located directly on Estero Bay and offers a variety of programs for local residents, visitors and school groups. Experience this one of a kind museum that sits atop a 2,000 year old Calusa Indian Shell Mound. Special programs offered each day. Open TU, WE & SA 9am-4pm through Dec 31. Beginning in Jan, the house will be open TU-SA from 9-4. Admission $10/adults; $5/ages 6-12. 451 Connecticut St., 239-765-0865. The Museum Store offers many great gift ideas for anyone. Books, discovery kits, games and creative crafts all benefit the nonprofit museum. “And Then” books, Solar Robot kits, Geckobot, tribal masks, art prints and much more are available.

     BOATING CLASSES

    The San Carlos Bay Sail & Power Squadron offers several boating classes at their classroom at 16048 San Carlos Blvd. For more information on classes, times and registration, call 239-466-4040 or visit www.scbps.com Upcoming classes include:

    -America’s Boating Class-Jan 7 & 14

    -Local Waters/Local Charts Class-Jan 21

    LAUGHTER YOGA

    This popular and fun and free morning class meets each Friday. Lift your mood and laugh away your stress every FR at 8am at Lynn Hall Park. Join others in simple rhythmic clapping, mild stretching, deep breathing and laughter exercises just for the health of it. No yoga experience needed. Bring a beach towel. Free with paid parking. For information call Debbie 239-677-7017.

    COUNTDOWN TO CHRISTMAS

    One local retailer is sharing their joy with the community this holiday season by adopting a local beach family, via Beach School, and helping seniors in care facilities, via Nurse on Call. Gifts by the Sea and owner Lorrie Wolf in Santini Plaza will celebrate the season with their first Countdown to Christmas. For every donation of an unwrapped gift worth at least $20 or a cash donation of $20 or more, donors will receive a 50% off discount on a single item in the store, including fine jewelry. Their goal is 100 gifts by December 15th. They ask that Islanders help them reach their goal and bring joy to members of our local community. Gifts by the Sea carries unique gift items created by local artists, as well as serving as a fruit shipper to northern friends. For more information call 239-463-2373.