1. Christmas Island Style Boat Parade canceled
The Christmas Island Style Committee has elected to cancel this year's Christmas Boat Parade, which was scheduled for Dec. 9, in recognition of potential safety issues concerning the route.
As a result of Hurricane Irma, the mouth of Collier Creek which leads into Collier Bay and eventually into Smokehouse Bay and The Esplanade has some issues regarding safe passage during low-tide events, which may present some issues to those not familiar with it. Plus larger boats like the Marco Princess and sailboats may have a difficult time traversing the channel, creating a problem with the flow of traffic and possibly blocking the return of vessels.
The committee has reviewed alternate routes and found none that would provide the general public with adequate viewing opportunities.
2. Irma debris collection begins in gated communities, private roads
Collier County’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Division received approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to allow its emergency debris removal contractor to begin collection of Hurricane Irma-related debris inside gated communities and from private roads.
Gated communities must submit a Right-of-Entry form to Collier County before storm-related debris collection can begin in the community. The Right-of-Entry form must be signed by an officer or director of the corporation, a manager of an LLC, a resident agent, or by a property management company authorized to sign for the community. Owners of private roads do not need to submit a Right-of-Entry form.
Right-of-Entry forms can be obtained by calling 239-252-8444, or by emailing Sue Zimmerman at SueZimmerman@colliergov.net.
3. Children’s Christmas art to support farmworker family programs post-Irma
Jennifer Arriaga, a fourth-grader, didn’t draw a classic Christmas scene. Instead of a sleigh with toys, she drew a farm truck overflowing with tomatoes. Instead of Santa, Jennifer drew a female farmer.
That’s not surprising at RCMA, which serves the children of low-income families in farm communities across Florida. “Low income” does not mean “low creativity” or “low Christmas joy,” and Jennifer and other children prove that in this year’s RCMA Christmas card designs.
Their imaginations burst forth on Christmas cards that RCMA will sell from now until Dec. 15. A catalog is available at www.rcma.org, and cards may be ordered there at $15 per box, plus shipping.
Proceeds help the nonprofit RCMA, based in Immokalee, operate child-care centers, charter schools and after-school programs in 21 Florida counties. In fact, each $15 sale of Christmas cards qualifies RCMA for $240 in matching “school-readiness” funding from the state.