Marco mini-golf course gets reprieve as judge lifts portion of order

Roger LaLonde Staff
The Ward family of Raleigh, N.C. enjoys a round of golf at the Marco Golf & Garden miniature golf course on Friday on Marco Island. Collier Circuit Judge Hugh D. Hayes approved an order to halt operations, requested by the Marco Island Civic Association under its rights to approve new consturction, powers given MICA by the older Deltona Corp. The property owners did nopt submit a request to MICA. Until the judge signs the order the course remains open.

Photo by ROGER LALONDE // Buy this photo

Roger LaLonde Staff The Ward family of Raleigh, N.C. enjoys a round of golf at the Marco Golf & Garden miniature golf course on Friday on Marco Island. Collier Circuit Judge Hugh D. Hayes approved an order to halt operations, requested by the Marco Island Civic Association under its rights to approve new consturction, powers given MICA by the older Deltona Corp. The property owners did nopt submit a request to MICA. Until the judge signs the order the course remains open.

— Marco Golf & Gardens received a reprieve today as a Collier judge lifted a portion of an order that required the owners to rip it out within 60 days.

Circuit Judge Hugh Hayes ruled an evidentiary hearing is needed to determine if property owner Fred Kramer gathered the necessary votes to end deed restrictions that have existed on the island for decades.

The Marco Island Civic Association (MICA) sued and sought a judgment in its favor, Kramer, who owns the property with his wife, Marianne, gathered the signatures of owners of eight of 15 properties, the majority required, then obtained a ninth signature after Hayes’ ruling in June.

On Friday, MICA’s attorney argued Kramer didn’t have the required number of votes because one property owner who signed a ballot has since sold his property. MICA attorney Jeffrey Fridkin said the rules to terminate restrictions say “then owners” at the time of the vote and that has changed.

The Kramers and Hazzard declined to comment after the hearing, which involved a motion asking Hayes to reconsider his prior ruling.

“The bulldozers are going to stand at ease,” Fridkin said.

A date for an evidentiary hearing has not been set, but will occur by Nov. 13. The restrictions, however, end Jan. 30, 10 years after the last renewal by MICA.

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Comments » 23

OldMarcoMan writes:

I wonder if this could anything to do with a certain Hotel Chain and its desire to do some 'remodeling and expansion' of its property ?

Konfuzius writes:

in response to OldMarcoMan:

I wonder if this could anything to do with a certain Hotel Chain and its desire to do some 'remodeling and expansion' of its property ?

Konfuzius says:

If you are close on the truth - shut up!
Otherwise you race the numbers of your enemies.

20andout writes:

What a Shame, why is it that they are making something so positive feel like its so criminal. We need this family oriented entertainment on this island.

ss0rdot writes:

Many of these comments are totally missing the point and whats at stake here. It's not whether we want or need a miniature golf course. It's about whether we as residents want MICA to continue in its current capacity including the enforcement of deed restrictions.
Just be VERY careful what you wish for. I can see some hidden agendas on the horizon.

RayPray writes:

in response to Konfuzius:

Konfuzius says:

If you are close on the truth - shut up!
Otherwise you race the numbers of your enemies.

"race the numbers of your enemies."

?

Is that something Confucius said or was it Al Sharpton?

marcogolfer writes:

MICA should be disbanded--they went out with the covered wagons

Konfuzius writes:

in response to ss0rdot:

Many of these comments are totally missing the point and whats at stake here. It's not whether we want or need a miniature golf course. It's about whether we as residents want MICA to continue in its current capacity including the enforcement of deed restrictions.
Just be VERY careful what you wish for. I can see some hidden agendas on the horizon.

The silent majority - if you see the results about Marriott's expansions plan - do not like MICA at all. A dozen of yesterday people believing to know what is good for you and me. BS.

Konfuzius says:

If you are to old to see the reality - retire. YOU ARE USELESS.

RayN writes:

The issue with the Marriott is not really MICA, it's with a use agreement that the Marriott signed with the city some time ago that states they won't build a parking garage east of Collier. That and the concerns of those living in the residences adjoining the proposed parking garage.

MICA may be antiquated, but it will be interesting to see if the parties can do what they're supposed to do. There seem to be two MICA issues: the first one is whether the owners of certain lots voted to lift the restrictions ON THOSE CERTAIN LOTS; and/or the second one is whether MICA will amend the business uses "permitted" in the deed restrictions should Mr. Kramer make a formal request.

If there are secret agendas ... they're well hidden. And, at least the dozing is on hold.

bondie writes:

The Mini Golf Course is lovely and not offensive in any way. It's location is also not offensive near restaurants, and shopping center. It is a win-win situation for all: the golf course, the restaurants, and shopping centers on the Island. It is mean sprited to tear it down. Also other businesses will benefit from any influx of visitors to the Island

happyINparadise writes:

Unless you were at the court room proceedings, you really don't know the whole story.

I think it is wonderful that Judge Hayes granted this reprieve for beautiful Marco Golf and Garden. Hopefully, MICA will realize how ludicrous this lawsuit really is. Over a thousand MI residents (many MICA members) have signed a petition requesting that MICA allow Marco Golf and Garden to reopen. That's what the petition is - simply a request from islanders to MICA asking them to please change their mind. The courts have more important things to deal with. This is a waste of time and taxpayer's money. The golf course is here, it is beautiful, and it employed several MI residents. Please, MICA, listen to the people of Marco Island and move on.

marcogolfer writes:

As a long time resident of Marco, I have seen some some good things happen [ good solid development; great hotels, good shopping centers, good entertainment, good restaurants, etc.] and some bad things [ i.e. crosswalks on Collier that I am surprised no one has been killed crossing; dangerous bike paths, the closing of Hallmark to mention a few. As far as the mini golf course, it appears the developer did not receive the blessing of MICA. What should happen now to move forward with a settlement between the two parties [ monetary, whatever, ] thereby overriding the lack of common sense exhibited by MICA. Too bad some folks in power do not have that quality.

WMissow writes:

in response to happyINparadise:

Unless you were at the court room proceedings, you really don't know the whole story.

I think it is wonderful that Judge Hayes granted this reprieve for beautiful Marco Golf and Garden. Hopefully, MICA will realize how ludicrous this lawsuit really is. Over a thousand MI residents (many MICA members) have signed a petition requesting that MICA allow Marco Golf and Garden to reopen. That's what the petition is - simply a request from islanders to MICA asking them to please change their mind. The courts have more important things to deal with. This is a waste of time and taxpayer's money. The golf course is here, it is beautiful, and it employed several MI residents. Please, MICA, listen to the people of Marco Island and move on.

If the court decides that there is reason to permit the course, so be it. If the court decides that there are violations enough to tear down the course that too can be the result.

Beauty, jobs, petitions are secondary considerations when it comes to the law.

1600 only represents 10% of the people.

Maybe the remainder do not want the Kramers to get away with their antics.

Did you ever think of that?

happyINparadise writes:

in response to WMissow:

If the court decides that there is reason to permit the course, so be it. If the court decides that there are violations enough to tear down the course that too can be the result.

Beauty, jobs, petitions are secondary considerations when it comes to the law.

1600 only represents 10% of the people.

Maybe the remainder do not want the Kramers to get away with their antics.

Did you ever think of that?

Well, maybe those opposed to Marco Golf and Garden reopening should start their own petition. To my knowledge, this has not happened.

Once again, I will reiterate, unless you were physically present at the hearing, and I tend to think you were not, you are not privy to the real story. And that's all that I have to say about that! :-)

It's a little cloudy, but my goodness, isn't it a beautiful day in Paradise? Wishing you peace and love. Celebrate life!

WMissow writes:

Why should anyone who wishes to go along with the existing rules wish to start a petition.

If the court decides that the laws and deed restrictions were not broken they will decide that way. Anything else is pure speculation and nothing else.

All that was given by the court on that day was a fair decision in order to give the Kramers more time to prove their case anything less would have been unfair by the court.

WMissow writes:

Believe me, I love being here on Marco Island.

The reason I moved here was the beauty of this place which was a result of existing property restrictions.

I know many other people who felt the same way and wish to keep it that way.

Don't be so willing to give that up without knowing the long term consequences of such actions. Consequences which I believe have nothing to do with the Putt, Putt course all by itself.

Beware of what is not so obvious to the naked eye.

happyINparadise writes:

in response to WMissow:

Why should anyone who wishes to go along with the existing rules wish to start a petition.

If the court decides that the laws and deed restrictions were not broken they will decide that way. Anything else is pure speculation and nothing else.

All that was given by the court on that day was a fair decision in order to give the Kramers more time to prove their case anything less would have been unfair by the court.

I will again state "You very obviously were NOT present" otherwise, you would refrain from making statements such as the above. The court proceedings are open to the public. Please come to the next proceedings and receive an education. I may try to attend. If you would like, perhaps we could carpool.

WMissow writes:

The "real story" as you call it has yet to be uncovered.

A hearing is just that....a hearing, and until the court makes its final decision it is just a place for the sides of an action to attempt to make their point.

I will be happy, whatever the court decides on this issue, because I feel it will be made by a professional not a court observer.

WMissow writes:

in response to Hascle:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sounds like a bad case of gas.

(couldn't help myself)

lauralbi1 writes:

Dear Netherwood: As you follow the Marriott issue, please just get your information correct. The restrictions being referenced are NOT Deed Restrictions, but are restrictions/agreements that are a part of the PUD (Public Utility Development) that was approved by the City for Mass Mutual, the property owner. Changing these retrictions or agreements that are a part of the PUD fall to the City, not MICA.
Just wanted to make certain you understand that MICA has no control as to what happens here.
Ed Issler

Twhite4 writes:

It is such a shame that MICA makes it so difficult for small businesses. My family has been waiting over a year for the mini golf to open. I live out of state and own 2 condo's in Marco Island. We are coming down the end of August before school starts. My kids are soooo excited that a mini golf opened on the island. Marco Island is such a beautiful place it is a shame that they are not more accepting of family activities. It seems like the Island is dominated by older residents that are not able to accept change or progress on the island. I am in full support of the mini golf course staying open!

RayN writes:

Ed ... please go back and re-read my comment. It's a two parter. 1st part Marriott (city not MICA), and 2nd part, Kramer (MICA, not city). I just love arguing things on which there is agreement.

lauralbi1 writes:

Thanks Ray. Sorry for the misread
Ed Issler

RayN writes:

:o)

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