Estero Civic Association
presentation by the D’Jamoos Group about their proposed Estero On The
River development and community discussion on the proposal. Estero on
the River is an 85 acre development on the northeast corner of US 41 and Corkscrew Road. See
the full agenda at
located on the south side of
Corkscrew Road midway between Sandy Lane and River
Monday, February 12th
Estero Community Planning Panel
meeting. The agenda includes presentations of the following
developments: Lee County Division of Natural Resources Dredging Project
and transport of the material to a location on
Williams Road just east of US 41;
Estero Civic Association (ECA) Meeting with a presentation by
Scotty Wood on the Recently Approved Property & Casualty Insurance
Reform. For further information about the ECA see
located on the south side of
Corkscrew Road midway between Sandy Lane and River
Last month about 200 persons visited this site each day to learn about
One year ago in January the traffic was only about 25% as great.
The community groups sponsoring the site are:
Estero Community Planning Panel (ECPP)
Estero Civic Association (ECA)
Estero Design Review Committee (EDRC)
Estero Council of Community Leaders (ECCL)
Greater Estero Cultural Arts Council (Arts Estero)
The site is still in formation.…
Your suggestions for improvement are most welcome.
Fashion Show for the Estero Community Improvement
Foundation High School Landscaping Project
On Saturday, February 17th the
Improvement Foundation (ECIF) will sponsor a Fashion Show & Breakfast at
Dillard's Coconut Point store with the proceeds benefiting the ECIF's campaign
to landscape the roadside perimeter around Estero High School.
The Fashion Show and Breakfast begins at 8:30 am; will be produced by Dillard's
with the breakfast buffet catered by Panera Bread. It promises to be an
outstanding and entertaining event.
Tickets for the Fashion Show & Breakfast are $25 each. All proceeds
will go to the ECIF. For further information see
Attendance is limited to 300 and a fast sell out is expected because Dillard's
is providing major advertising support when ticket sales open to the general
public at Dillard's and Colonial Bank next week. If you or your spouse
wishes to attend we recommend an advance ticket purchase before next week.
Dillard's is fast becoming a leading corporate citizen of Estero. The
recent host/hostess program during the Coconut Point store's grand opening, in
which ECCL members, spouses and friends participated, generated $1,875 for the
ECIF Landscaping Project. The ECIF thanks all who volunteered for this
We would also like to thank Kite Development, the developers of Estero Town
Commons, located on the southeast corner of Three Oaks and Corkscrew, who
recently donated $2,500 for this project.
Simon Development Group and Oakbrook Properties, the developers of
Coconut Point, made presentations
on their future development plans at the Estero Design
Review Committee meeting on January 10th. Simon is the developer of the Town
Center that extends from Coconut Road north to the Halfway Creek flow way,
located about midway between Coconut and Williams Roads. Oakbrook Properties is
the developer of the North Village, which extends from Halfway Creek north to
Williams Road, and the South Village, which extends from Coconut Road south to
the Cozze restaurant, formerly the Sanibel Steakhouse. For further information
on Coconut Point see
the western edge of this development along US 41 consists of several sizeable
outlots each of which will be occupied by one or more tenants or purchasers. The
following firms are committed to locating in this area:
· CNL Bank
· TGI Friday’s restaurant
· Diamond District
· Wachovia Bank
· Verizon Communications
· Walter E. Smythe furniture
· Florida Gulf Bank
In addition discussions are underway with a major hotel developer and another
furniture store. As reported earlier the large parcel of land in the northeast
corner of the Town Center will house a Target Superstore.
The 30 acre site at the corner of Williams and US 41 will soon seek rezoning
in order to be developed as the Art
District at Rapallo. This project will consist of office, residential, some
live/work units, a number of art galleries and similar stores along with a
theater for traveling live theatrical performances.
multifamily residential development, located at the rear of the property south
of Coconut Road and east of Via Coconut Point, will be starting vertical
development within the next week or so. Site work and underground utility work
has been underway for several months. For further information on Mirasol see
The property just south of the
Health Center will be developed by DOPCO as a 25,000 square foot retail
center called the Shoppes of
Coconut Point. DOPCO was present at the January EDRC meeting to present
their plans for the center. The EDRC recommended that the developer add more
landscaping along US 41.
permitted in Estero during 2006 were the lowest in the 7 years that the
County’s system has tracked Estero’s permits. Interestingly the average number
of housing units during 2005 and 2006 is nearly equal to the average for 2000
and 2001, Estero’s highest prior years. In other words the speculation of 2005
has been offset by the slowdown of 2006. The County permitting information
used in this report may be found at
The following table shows how 2006 compares with the same period during the
prior six years:
Annual TotalHousing Units
Value Per Unit
Single Family Units
In spite of the decline in the number of housing units permitted, the average
building value, excluding the land beneath it, was 18% higher than in any prior
year and almost double the average price in 2000, in spite of having the
smallest percentage (39.0%) of single family homes. As a consequence 2006 still
produced the third highest annual increase in total residential building value.
In 1997 Estero was a sleepy little village midway between Ft. Myers and Naples.
It had a long and interesting history and about 4,600 households. Then the
small, unincorporated Lee County community’s
residential growth began as FGCU,
the Southwest Florida Regional Airport and
Miromar Outlets anchored the area and
as fewer large parcels of land close to the Gulf were available for residential
development south of Estero the flow of residential reached Estero.
Estero Housing Trends from 2000 to 2005…
In 1998 about 550 housing units were
permitted in Estero and the following year that number doubled to 1,150 new
housing units. The following table shows how that trend has continued beginning
with another doubling of the housing unit permit rate in 2000.
Number of Units Permitted
Most of Estero’s residential growth has occurred in large, well planned
residential communities initiated by some of the country’s and region’s largest
and best developers and home builders…Bonita Bay Group, WCI, U S Homes, Levitt &
Sons, Toll Brothers, Colonial now Meritage Homes…to name a few. These developers
were able to purchase large parcels of land that allowed them to develop many
housing units in a short period of time under very favorable market conditions.
Throughout this period only about 20 housing units in Estero were permitted by
individual homeowners outside of these planned developments. Those homes are in
Old Estero and in the eastern rural areas of the community.
Residential Growth During 2000—2002
Almost three-fourths of the 5,700 units
permitted in 2000, 2001 and 2002 were in just three communities…The Brooks,
Pelican Sound. At that time The Brooks was ranked among the 15
fastest growing residential communities in the U.S. as Bonita Bay permitted over
2,200 housing units in the Brooks during those three years. During the same
period Stoneybrook and Pelican Sound each permitted over 900 housing units. Most
of the housing permitted and built between 2000 and 2002 was in the southern
half of Estero, south of Corkscrew Road.
The build out of these communities and the slowdown caused by 9-11-2001 slowed
Estero’s residential development somewhat for a couple of years, but shortly
thereafter other major developments and some smaller ones, mostly north of
Corkscrew Road, started to take up the slack.
Residential Growth During 2003—2006…
In 2003 five large residential communities
replaced The Brooks, Stoneybrook and Pelican Sound as Estero’s residential
growth leaders. Together they permitted over 3,850 housing units in the four
years from 2003 to 2006. They are Grandezza with about 1,050 units permitted,
Bella Terra with about 1,150 units,
The Cascades with nearly 700 units,
with over 500 units and Rapallo with about 540 units. Only Bella Terra, whose
zoning allows another 650 units, will continue to build many additional housing
units in 2007 and beyond.
Finally eleven smaller communities permitted another 1,500 housing units during
this four year period. Nine of these eleven communities are nearly sold out.
Thus, thirty-seven residential communities, big and small, have contributed to
the nearly 13,000 new housing units permitted in Estero during the last seven
years. Twenty four of the thirty seven communities are nearly sold out, while
the other thirteen will continue to build during the next few years.
During this four year period Estero’s housing growth shifted north and east. The
areas of highest concentration in the 2003-06 period were along Estero Parkway,
Three Oaks Parkway and Corkscrew Road east of I-75.
The Next Five Years, 2007 Through 2011…
Sixteen of the thirty seven residential
communities that permitted housing units in Estero since 2000 are still under
development and are zoned for about 2,100 more housing units that are likely to
be permitted during the next five years and another 450 units after 2011.
In addition, there are five communities with zoning for another 1,400 housing
units that have not started to develop their land. These developers are likely
to seek permits for at least 1,200 housing units between now and 2011.
Finally, there are twelve more residential communities that are seeking some
residential zoning. If their applications are approved by the Board of County
Commissioners as requested, they would be authorized to build another 3,500
housing units. It is estimated that they could add another 2,300 housing units
to Estero’s total by 2011.
The following table summarizes the likely number of housing units to be
permitted in Estero during the next five years:
Expected Number of Units
Zoned But Not Under
In the Zoning
While 5,600 additional housing units are substantial, it is far less than the
recent rate of nearly 13,000 in about seven years.
Estero will never again see housing development at the rate we experienced in
2005. We estimate that 2007 will be another slow year for permitting new housing
units because of the large supply of existing housing units now on the market,
including many speculator owned homes. Thereafter the market is likely to
greatly improve and our estimates may prove to be conservative.
The good news is that once the twelve proposed communities are zoned and
developed there are no more large tracts of land available for housing
development in Estero as long as the County continues the present zoning for the
Density Reduction Groundwater Recharge (DRGR) area of one home per 10 acres.
Most of the land around the existing and planned residential communities along
Corkscrew Road east of I-75 is either in the DRGR or is owned by some public
agency for conservation.
In conclusion, Estero will have changed from a sleepy little village of 4,600
households in 2000 to a fully developed community with 22,850 households in a
little over a decade. Thus the community’s challenge continues to be to expand
our infrastructure so that it catches up to our residential and commercial
growth. If we do not build the roads, schools, parks and hospitals needed to
keep up with all this growth, our quality of life will suffer dramatically.
The group agreed with the
subcommittee’s recommendation to postpone the development of the hospital
solicitation letter and supporting documents until after a meeting with Kevin Newingham, Lee Memorial’s principal strategic planning official scheduled for
January 19, 2007. Lee Memorial owns about 30 acres in
Coconut Point behind the
Bonita Community Health Center. The subcommittee was asked to consider involving
a Lee Memorial Board member in the discussions and to verify the cause of the
long timeline that was suggested by Lee Memorial’s south Lee hospital needs
The Mayor of Bonita Springs indicated that the City may soon be the location of
a family healthcare services unit with federal funding that will serve low
income patients. This facility could improve the financial feasibility of
operating a hospital in the area.
Sandy Lane (in Estero the road is now called Via Coconut Point)…
The City members
indicated that they would not receive the traffic analysis they had commissioned
to assess the impact of an extension of Sandy Lane upon the City’s road network
south of the Sandy Lane extension until June or July, 2007. Thus the City could
not participate in an effort to persuade the County to finance some or all of
the cost of the design of Sandy Lane prior to receiving and finding that the
segment would not negatively impact the City. They asserted that Bonita Beach
Road improvements were a much higher priority for the residents of the City.
They were also concerned that increased County funding for Sandy Lane could
negatively impact other City road projects that are jointly funded by the two
The Estero representatives proposed that Lee County be asked to fund the design
phase now in order to reduce the overall cost of right-of-way and construction.
They emphasized that getting Sandy Lane completed was their highest priority.
The following conclusions emerged from the discussion:
· Estero will press the County
for early design, without the support of the City at this time.
· The City will explore whether
any third, private-sector parties will participate in funding,
· The City will endeavor to take
traffic counts along US41 during the next few months for later use.
· ECCL will ask the County to do
so as well.
Planning the Future of the Density Reduction Groundwater Resource (DRGR) Area…
At the Oct 27 Workshop the following views of success regarding the
“Strike a balance between environmental concerns, development rights, and
customary uses that is in the overall community’s interest, and avoid wholesale
development of the DRGR and/or pollution and destruction of our resources.”
“Restore and preserve aquifers and flow ways through all the DRGR areas. The
Benson/Pulling dehydration process should be funded by the County and City.
Don’t deteriorate Spring Creek”.
“Avoid the Bonita Springs DRGR from becoming just a receiving area for the
The major obstacles will be “political will”, “finding dollars for dehydration
work”, and “developers (that) may fight what’s going on”.
Participants in the January 11th meeting approved the following additional
Time is not our friend. We need to pull the trigger and get things done.
Neighboring properties need to be developed in a compatible manner.
We should not let unplanned development precede comprehensive planning and drive
Environmentally sensitive lands must be protected.
The DRGR should be seen within its larger regional context, recognizing that
environmental quality and water flows do not recognize jurisdictional or
The County’s reactive efforts through 2006 are being replaced by a more
proactive approach to the DR/GR.
Interim decisions during 2007 and beyond, before a plan is put in place, should
be based on long term goals, such as preserving known areas and features of
environmental quality, water supply and quality.
A balance of land conservation and development needs to be achieved, by
understanding the resources and locating uses in accordance with good,
Affordable and workforce housing and green space acquisition should be
accomplished as part of the desired balance.
The following ideas for achieving long term desired results were identified:
Develop a consensus-based process for planning the DR/GR that is inclusive of
City, Estero, other agencies and the private sector.
Integrate all studies and assess the environmental and developmental constraints
and attributes of the DR/GR through professional and scientific experts,
producing an overlay system for planning purposes.
Develop a plan that is both visionary and sound.
Liaise with 1000 Friends of Florida, bringing their experience and talents to
Evaluate the question of mining. Identify the best locations for additional
mines near the existing mining operations and provide incentives to induce news
mines to locate there. Recognize that these mines help reduce the cost of local
road base materials. The Bonita Springs City Council recently adopted a policy
prohibiting any new mines within the Bonita DRGR area. After the mines have been
exhausted, get them properly restored.
Promote and implement Transfer of Development Rights (TDR), based on science and
best management practices (BMP’s) by the County and other agencies.
The group concluded that the following actions should be undertaken:
Estero will promote a new planning approach by Lee County and keep the City
informed of its progress.
The City will assist Estero in applying for grants that provide funds for
evaluating resources, planning and management mechanisms.
The City will explore a TDR program for DRGR properties within its boundaries
forthwith, leading the way for its use throughout the DRGR.
Recent Joint Progress
Since the January 11th meeting some progress has been made on all three of these
issues. The following section summarizes these efforts.
Attracting a Hospital to Serve South Lee County… On January 25th, City
Councilman John Joyce and Sam Levy and Don Eslick of ECCL met with Kevin
Newingham, Lee Memorial’s Strategic Planning officer, Mike Riley, Administrator
for the Bonita Community Health Center, and Jack Eikenberg, a member of the
hospital’s finance committee and a resident of Bonita Bay to discuss Lee
Memorial’s two year old evaluation of south Lee County’s hospital needs.
Mr. Newingham made a detailed power point presentation to the group that
summarized all the information and assumptions that were the basis of the
analysis. The central focus of the discussion that followed was on the
University Of Florida Bureau Of Economic and Business Research (BEBR) population
estimates that were used by Lee Memorial.
The Bonita and Estero representatives presented Mr. Newingham and his colleagues
with more specific, current information on Bonita and Estero population
estimates and projections using the same methodology. The City’s Evaluation and
Analysis Report (EAR) adopted by the City Council on September 20, 2006 shows
the City’s population trends from 2000 through 2005 and projects the City’s
population through 2014.
Because Estero is not a municipality BEBR does not estimate Estero’s population
each year like it does all Florida municipalities and counties. Thus the
estimates made by the ECCL using the BEBR procedures are new information to Lee
Memorial. Mr. Newingham agreed to ask his staff to update their hospital needs
projections using the information provided by the Bonita Springs and Estero
The Bonita and Estero representatives also suggested that Lee Memorial include
some or all of San Carlos Park in their revised estimates, especially that
portion that includes Florida Gulf Coast University and the rapidly growing Miromar Lakes development.
Mr. Newingham pointed out that the Development of Regional Impact (DRI) Zoning
of Coconut Point prevents Lee Memorial from initiating a hospital amendment to
that zoning until January 1, 2009. In addition he noted that the $275 million
expansion of Gulf Coast Hospital (recently acquired by Lee Memorial) will not be
completed until 2010. These factors prevent Lee Memorial from proceeding with a
hospital on the Coconut Point site until 2010 or later, even if the demand for
the facility is sufficient within the next few years.
Finally Lee Memorial has recently begun to update its vision for providing
health care in Lee County through a program called “Community Visioning 2017”.
This program, being assisted by a nationally recognized heath care expert, will
develop a health needs assessment for the Hospital by August or September 2007.
Bonita Springs and Estero may participate in that process through membership in
its Steering Committee and by providing input through some of its Focus Groups.
Sandy Lane (Via Coconut Point)… After the January 11th meeting the ECCL
representatives discussed with Commissioner Ray Judah the need for Lee County to
include some funding for the design of Sandy Lane
from Coconut Point to Old 41
in the County’s 2007 update of its Transportation Capital Improvement Program
(CIP) so that construction of this project is not to be pushed back another
year. Commissioner Judah asked that the request be made in writing. The
following letter was transmitted to Comm. Judah by the ECCL on January 20th:
“As we discussed the other day July will be too late for the County to consider
adding a project to the 2007-2012 Transportation Capital Improvement Program.
Consequently I am writing now on behalf of the Estero Council of Community
Leaders to request that you ask County Transportation Staff to prepare a budget
and CIP amendment resolution, to add up to $1 million in the 2007-08 fiscal year
for the design of Via Coconut Point (aka Sandy Lane) between its southern
terminus at Pelican Colony Road and Old 41 in the City of Bonita Springs using
the approved route.
This request should be subject to the following two conditions:
That the City of Bonita Springs supplement the County’s contribution to the cost
of the design by an amount agreed to by the two parties prior to final adoption
of the 2007-08 CIP, and
That the County contribution toward the funding of this segment shall be in
addition to and shall not reduce the County’s commitment to funding any future
Bonita Beach road improvements.
In December of 2006 Florida Transportation Engineers updated the estimated costs
of this road segment for the City of Bonita Springs. They estimated that the
total cost of engineering the road would range from $3.18 million to $4.45
million. This request assumes that no more than $2 million of these amounts will
be sufficient for the design of the segment. I am attaching a copy of the
Florida Transportation Engineers study so that your Transportation Department
can determine if the $2 million upper limit on this request is sufficient for
It is imperative that the design phase be started as soon as possible because:
The recent opening of the first phase of the Coconut Point Town Center in
unincorporated Lee County and the development of the project in all its phases
will dramatically increase traffic in this area over the next several years, and
Given the demand for rezoning and development orders in this area, both in
Estero and the City of Bonita Springs, road construction design plans are
essential for Community Development Staff to require structures to not be placed
within the proposed alignment, thus reducing unnecessary compensation in the
acquisition stage, and
Amending Lee County’s highway prioritization will make regional improvements
which will not just assist Bonita Springs and the Estero communities, but those
visiting and utilizing this area. Removal of local traffic will unclog the U. S.
41 arterial road.
Finally, I would hope that the support that ECCL provided to the County Board
when the recent Road Impact Fee increase was being decided would be given great
consideration by the Board of County Commissioners when making this decision.
Thanks for all your help. Hopefully, with your direction and input, you can
resolve the issue for the request to add the design of this roadway to the CIP
The ECCL recently met with Steve Jansen, who heads the County’s traffic counting
section, to obtain historical and current traffic information for the segment of
US 41 between Old 41 and Coconut Road and to learn how it compares to other
segments of US 41 that are relieved by Old 41 or Sandy Lane (Via Coconut Point).
The County’s recently published “2006 Traffic Count Report” indicates that the
section of US 41 between Coconut Road and Old 41 (immediately west of the
proposed Sandy Lane Extension) had Average Daily Traffic Volume (AADT) of 53,300
vehicles during 2006. In contract the comparable data for US 41:
· between Bonita Beach Road and
W. Terry Street was 42,400, or 10,900 less vehicles,
· between Estero Parkway and San
Carlos Boulevard was 43,300, or 10,000 less vehicles.
The County will be monitoring these and other Count Stations during February and
March and will provide Estero and Bonita with this data in time the next meeting
of the communities on April 13th.
Planning the Future of the Density Reduction Groundwater Resource (DRGR) Area…
On January 12th the ECCL Environmental/DRGR Committee met with City Councilman
John Joyce, County Commissioner Ray Judah, representatives of The Conservancy,
the Audubon Society, the Wildlife Federation and Charles Pattison, Executive
Director of 1000 Friends of Florida, to discuss growth management/land planning
and environmental and water resource conservation approaches being successfully
employed in other Florida locations. The meeting produced an extensive list of
suggestions that the County and the City of Bonita Springs might use to more
effectively plan for their DRGR territories.
On January 22nd 12th the ECCL Environmental/DRGR Committee met with
representatives of The Conservancy, the Audubon Society, the Wildlife
Federation, the Responsible Growth Management Coalition and Bill Spikowski,
former Lee County Planning Director and well respected planning consultant, to
discuss all the development threats to the DRGR, the ideas that were generated
at the meeting with Charles Pattison and to begin to outline the scope of work
that should be included in several DRGR related grant proposals that need to be
submitted in March. This discussion was aided by Mr. Spikowski’s extensive
knowledge about the DRGR from inception in the late 1980’s to the present.
The Committee will now begin to prepare the grant applications, and after
consulting with the Board of County Commissioners and County staff file them
prior to the March deadlines. In addition the applications will be shared with
the City of Bonita Springs in the hope that the City Council will support them.
The Florida Department of Transportation will open bids for the
I-75 Design/Finance/Build (D/F/B)project on February 23rd and award the contract
probably early in March. The project will six-lane 35 miles of I-75 from the
new Golden Gate interchange in Collier County to the SR 80 interchange in Lee
Major improvements to two interchanges, I-75/Immokalee and I-75/Daniels, are
part of the project. Work will start later this year and is estimated to finish
at the end of 2010. The I-75 DFB project is very innovative and moves this vital
capacity project ahead by several years. The project will be built in a little
more than three years, but the department is able to finance the cost of the job
over five years. Construction is estimated at $420 million and will be the
largest letting in the state of Florida.
The "Boomer" property, several acres of
the developer's site (JED), and several acres of the Methodist church property
remain viable pond site locations. The pond is needed for water treatment as
part of the project to six-lane US 41 from Corkscrew to San Carlos. The Florida
Department of Transportation is continuing discussions with the property owners
regarding land needed for the pond. The US 41 project is funded for construction
in the state's fiscal year 2010/2011, although the department and the County
remain interested in opportunities to advance construction of this job.
The Florida legislature and Governor Crist listened to the residents and passed
a bill that will help Floridians by reducing the present high cost of property insurance (estimates range from15 to 40%).
The ECCL’s 24 member Insurance Task Force developed a statement of 13 guiding
principles for property insurance reform that we transmitted to both the
Florida House and Senate prior to their special session which convened on
January 16th. Review of the new law that the Governor signed last week reveals
that no less than 12 of the 13 guiding principles are embodied in the new law,
in one way or another.
How our Guiding Principles Were Satisfied
Number 1: Requiring insurance companies to offer higher deductibles and/or
reduced coverages and grant reasonable premium credits therefore is embodied in
the new law.
Number 3: Liberalization of regulations for condominium association self funding
is another part of the new law.
Numbers 4 & 5: Encouraging consistent enforcement of new building codes
and providing incentives for property owners to improve older
structures' resistance to storms were also included.
Number 6: Requiring that insurance companies have their senior management
and chief actuary sign off on rate filings as being "reasonable and actuarially
sound" are included in the law.
Number 7 & 8: Providing incentives for insurers to increase their property
insurance writings in Florida as well as incentives to foreign reinsurers to
enter the state are also included in the law.
Number 9: The new law requires that insurers who write auto insurance in
Florida and auto and property insurance in other states must begin to write
property insurance in Florida.
Number 10: Our principles recommended that the licensing of Florida-only
subsidiaries be curtailed, and the new law provides for this.
Number 11: Allowing Citizens Insurance Company to become a competitive
insurer as opposed to its current "insurer of last resort" role provides an
important injection of competition into the Florida property insurance
marketplace, and the new law does this.
Number 12: Our principles recommended an increase in state funding to Citizens
and the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund, and hundreds of millions of dollars
have been appropriated for this purpose.
Finally, we recommended that Florida approach the US Congress to enact
a Comprehensive National Catastrophe Insurance Plan. Last week,
following letters written by Governor Crist to the leaders of the US Congress,
the Florida Congressional delegation met and affirmed its' intent to introduce
this legislation in the current session of Congress.
This may sound like we are claiming responsibility for the new law. This is
really not the case because our guiding principles were similar to
recommendations from other consumer/resident groups across the state. The
important thing is that the legislators and the Governor listened to the people,
and enacted legislation "for the people". It's refreshing to see this.
As with any significant new law, there will be trials and tribulations with its
implementation, and some insurers may even choose to withdraw from the state,
but in the long run, the legislature and the Governor "did the right thing".
The ECCL Insurance Task Force will monitor implementation of the new law and
will not hesitate to get involved if circumstances warrant. Democracy lives
An Evening on Fashion Drive, January 18
was the first cooperative venture between Coconut Point Mall and Arts Estero.
· three stations of
entertainment acts along with the Art Gallery at the management office,
· poured 700 glasses of wine and
ran out quickly,
· estimated more than 1,000
people were attracted to the mall because of the event,
· Membership brochures went
flying thanks to volunteers talking up membership benefits in the Greater Estero
Cultural Arts Council, Inc. In policing the area after the event, volunteers
found no evidence that membership brochures were discarded.
Symphony Plays First Concert at Park…
On January 20th, the Southwest Florida
Symphony Orchestra (SWFSO) played at Estero Community Park. Crowd estimates
ranged from 2,000 to 3,000. First-time glitches included:
· Failure of recognition of the
efforts of ECCL’s and Arts Estero’s role in bringing the concert to fruition;
· Rehearsal time scheduled when
the sun was in the players’ eyes;
· Insufficient time for the
audio technician to balance the system;
· Lack of a promised VIP
All of these concerns will be addressed and corrected for the Sunday March 4
concert at 4:00 p.m. Not so incredibly, people came out of the proverbial
woodwork and were thrilled with the prospect of the SWFSO playing at Estero
Community Park. Commissioner Ray Judah said he would publicly thank the
concert’s promoters and the contributors at the January 30 BOCC meeting.
Board Members Added…
Two new board members were added to the Greater Estero
Cultural Arts Council, Inc. at the January meeting. Gary Queen of Shadowwood in
the Brooks is an investment consultant with an MBA in finance and a BBA degree
in management. David Casto of Spring Run in the Brooks is a professional fund
raiser and served as the Executive Director of the United Way in New Jersey.
Both gentlemen have the expertise to bring Arts Estero further into its
development as a premier Arts organization in Southwest Florida.
Two-Day Festival Celebrates Coconut Mall and Arts Estero February 16 and 17…
Simon Property Group, in cooperation with Arts Estero, invites everyone to a
two-day festival celebrating Coconut Point Town Center from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00
p.m. on Friday, February 16 and Saturday, February 17. The Town Center will be
transformed into a gigantic stage with a dozen entertainment stations. Musical
acts and art exhibits will delight your senses as you stroll along Fashion
Drive. This event is the largest ever undertaken by Arts Estero and will
arguably be the biggest arts celebration to descend upon Estero.
Volunteer Workers Orientation Set for February 12…
Volunteer orientation for the
February 16-17 event is at the clubhouse of the Villages at Country Creek, 7:00
p.m. Monday, February 12. The clubhouse entrance is on the north side of
Corkscrew Road between Three Oaks Parkway and Via Coconut Point. At the
orientation volunteers will be instructed where to report and at what time. We
have three volunteer time slots for each entertainment station. The slots are
11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. All times are –ish: Eleven-ish, one-ish,
three-ish. At orientation you will learn your exact time slot. Please be sure to
include first and second choices. You may volunteer for either Friday or
Saturday or both. Orientation is only days away! To volunteer, send a message
with your name, phone number and e-mail address to
Library Outdoor Concert March 3…
The Cypress Lake High School Chamber Orchestra
will play an outdoor concert of Celtic music Saturday March 3 from 11:00 a.m. to
12:00 noon at South County Regional Library located at 21100 Three Oaks Parkway,
just north of Corkscrew Road in Estero. This free concert is underwritten by
Friends of South County Regional Library, Inc. Under the direction of Mr.
Michael Simpson, the chamber group consists of two violins, viola, cello and
SWFSO Encore March 4…
The Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra returns to Estero
Community Park with a free concert at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday March 4. If January 20
was any indication, the support for a symphony orchestra in the Estero area is
large and growing.
The next meeting will be February 28, 2007, the fourth Wednesday of the month,
at Estero Community Park from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Current and future
members of Arts Estero are always welcome to attend.