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Marco Island Historical Society groundbreaking

Fred Martin and August Fischer inspect the model for the planned museum shortly after the groundbreaking ceremony Saturday afternoon.

Photo by LESLIE WILLIAMS HALE, Staff

Fred Martin and August Fischer inspect the model for the planned museum shortly after the groundbreaking ceremony Saturday afternoon.

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  • The Marco Island Strummers played for the crowd at the start of Saturday's official groundbreaking ceremony for the recently named Marco Island Historical Museum. The museum will be built on land donated by Collier County, located adjacent to the Marco Island branch of the Collier County Public Library on S. Heathwood Drive.
  • Betsy Perdichizzi, co-chair of the Marco Island Historical Society Capital Campaign, waves at pilot Dick Sherman as he makes a fly-by over the groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday.
  • Musicians Frankie Ray & Maryellen perform their original song, 'Marco Memories,' which they have proclaimed 'the official song of Marco Island.'
  • Audience members enjoy the musical stylings of Frankie Ray and Maryellen.
  • County Public Services Coordinator Marla Ramsey, left, and County Director of Museums Ron Jamro attended the groundbreaking, both pointing to the importance of a completed museum as one very unique component of the Collier County Museum system.
  • Islanders kicked the ceremony off with the national anthem.
  • Florida State Senator Burt Saunders told the crowd the Marco Island Historical Society stands apart from the 67,000 nonprofits in the state because of the dedication and sheer willpower of its 380 or so volunteers. A museum on Marco is important not only to document the area's unique history, but also to help mark the city's maturity, he said.
  • 'If I had written the script for today, I would have given you all shovels, and we would have had the land cleared before it was all said and done,' Collier County Commissioner Donna Fiala joked with the crowd. She paid homage to the Marco Island Historical Society, which she said he has been a huge fan of since the day several members walked into her office requesting just $25,000 toward the museum's construction. Instead, they got a $3.4 million piece of land from the county on which to build the facility.
  • Capital Campaign Co-Chairs Bill and Betsy Perdichizzi thank the many people who helped realize dream of the historical society to build a museum on Marco Island.
  • With no hesitations, the baker's dozen of people donning shovels dig into the soil on the future site of the Marco Island Historical Museum. From left to right: former City Council Chair Mike Minozzi; City Councilor Bill Trotter; Florida State Senator Burt Saunders; Collier County Commissioner Donna Fiala; primary donors Sonja and Jon Laidig; Capital Campaign Honorary Co-Chairs Bonnie and Craig Woodward; Capital Campaign Co-Chairs Bill and Betsy Perdichizzi, Gwen Goodman, Historical Society President Lee Lindberg and Capital Campaign member Tom Wagor.
  • Just after breaking ground, Bonnie Woodward (at left, with husband, Craig) and Betsy Perdichizzi (with husband, Bill) show off the 'artifacts' they unearthed when they dug in. Capital Campaign Co-Chairs Bill and Betsy Perdichizzi named the Woodwards 'honorary co-chairs' because of their exhaustive efforts to raise money on behalf of the museum.
  • Shovels at the ready, everyone lines up to break ground. From left to right: former City Council Chair Mike Minozzi; City Councilor Bill Trotter; Florida State Senator Burt Saunders; Collier County Commissioner Donna Fiala; primary donors Sonja and Jon Laidig; Capital Campaign Honorary Co-Chairs Bonnie and Craig Woodward; Capital Campaign Co-Chairs Bill and Betsy Perdichizzi, Gwen Goodman, Historical Society President Lee Lindberg and Capital Campaign member Tom Wagor.
  • Fred Martin and August Fischer inspect the model for the planned museum shortly after the groundbreaking ceremony Saturday afternoon.
  • A model of the completed museum depicts the three planned buildings for the site: a main building, an administrative building and a living history hall, which will serve as a meeting and performance area.
  • At a time of year when most people are thinking chocolate bunnies, Marco Islanders are thinking chocolate cats. Carolyn Fischer, a society member, holds up two chocolate Key Marco Cats she bought. Half the sales from the treats, which are made by Black Truffle chocolatier on the island, are donated to the Marco Island Historical Society Capital Campaign.

The Marco Island Historical Society groundbreaking was held Saturday, March 15 on South Heathwood Drive across from the Marco Island Library.

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