Market ends, Chamber expo venue changes, free skin screenings, resort gets kudos

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Kudos for market

Marco’s popular Farmers Market ended its six-month run April 13, with vendors reporting brisk business and praising the Parks & Rec staff for smooth running.

“It’s been awesome,” said Colleen Rose of C&J Produce of North Fort Myers. “The organization has been consistently good, and the market has always been busy.”

She plans to reserve her traditional three spots for the market when applications open in August.

“Our business depends entirely on markets,” Rose said. “We hire the farms to grow for us, and the farmers love it because they can’t grow, harvest and sell unless they have a roadside stand just outside their farms. So there’s no waste, and everybody gets a little part of it.”

“Peaches” Pepper of Peaches Provisions also reported good business, but noted that the January weather had not played ball. Also, she said, she was disappointed by the lack of newspaper features on the market, as well as paid advertising to attract more marketgoers.

Expo migrates

An early rush marked the change of venue for the annual Marco Island Area Chamber of Commerce Business Expo from the Marriott Resort to the Marco Island Charter Middle School gym. Chamber sales and marketing director Katie O’Hara pegged the visitors at about 200 for the two-hour networking expo, and said a survey sent to vendors afterward came back positive.

“We had 36 businesses, clubs and organizations participate,” O’Hara said, “and hopefully we’re going to keep this venue in the future. It’s convenient for vendors, and exposes residents to the beautiful middle school. A half-hour from 4:30-5 p.m. was reserved for vendors to network with each other.

For 2017 booth booking, contact O’Hara at katie@marcoislandchamber.org.

New psychologist in town

Georgann Norton, a licensed psychologist for 20 years, has opened an office on Marco Island. She works with adults who suffer from depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, OCD, grief and divorce, among other issues.

“People think that down here in the sun and beauty of Florida, we don’t have problems,” says Norton. “We all go through difficult times. To go into therapy can seem daunting but once you pick up that phone and go to your first appointment, you realize, wow, this is going to be helpful.”

She is at the SunTrust building at 950 N Collier, 4th floor. Call 261-1514 or go to nortontherapy.com.

Shift for investments

Harbor Investments/Century has moved to 950 N. Collier Blvd., No. 400, writes Kevin Sullivan. Call 777-8025, fax 642-4086 or e-mail sullivank@centurysecurities.com.

Biking for amputees

Several Woodward, Pires & Lombardo law firm members recently participated in the Miracle Limbs benefit bike ride to help amputees and their families. Miracle Limbs Courage in Motion (miraclelimbs.org/) is a non-profit organization. Local participants were Mark Woodward, Christopher Lombardo and Matt Flores.

Hilton resort boosts market share

Hilton Marco Island Beach Resort and Spa has scooped a company award, recognizing the most improved market share in the Americas. The resort’s category is for hotels with fewer than 500 rooms. GM Mac Chaudhry said he couldn’t be prouder of his team. The resort has more than 12,000-square-feet of flexible meeting space including a 5,200-square-foot Grand Ballroom with 1,500-square-feet of pre-function space with two additional smaller scale meeting rooms.

Floating fundraiser

Marco’s next Meals of Hope fundraiser will be April 25 aboard the Marco Island Princess from 5 p.m. Rosetta Stone entertains, while hors d’oeuvres and reduced drink prices are an incentive. Donations, which fund the annual dry meal packing event for needy Collier families, are $10. The boat will stay in dock for the party. Marco Island Sunrise Rotary, Noontime Rotary and Kiwanis work together to raise the funds.

Free skin screenings

Noting that one in five Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime, Riverchase Dermatology is including Marco in a string of area locations for free screenings during May. Appointments for the screenings are required Call 1-800-591-3376.

Tech inclusion

John R. Wood Properties has included Marco Realtor Stacy Witthoff in its area technology advisory council. Others are Robert Vesci, North Naples; Rowan Samuel, Dave Bower and Jessica Bibbee, Central; Mike Dodge and Zach Anderson, North Naples; Nina Link and Garren Grup, Bonita, and Dan Snow and Greg Norman, Old Naples.

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