WOW To Do List: Family 5K, holiday events, more

Marco Eagle


Comedian Eddie Ifft

Everyone needs to laugh a little even during the holidays, so see the comedian at Off The Hook Comedy Club, 2500 Vanderbilt Beach Road, Suite 1100. At 7 p.m. Friday-Sunday or 9 p.m. Saturday. Tickets start at $22 plus fees. Information: offthehookcomedy.com or 239-389-6901.

Marco Island Bocce League

The Marco Island Bocce League is accepting registrations for the third season starting on Monday, Jan. 13. The purpose of the League is to provide a coordinated bocce activity for the residents and winter vacationers to the Island.  The teams may be made up of both genders. No experience is required; therefore, the skill level will vary. A registration form is available at marcoislandbocceleague.com or may be picked up at the Mackle Park front desk. Information, Charles Pineno at 540-336-4121.

‘A Doublewide, Texas Christmas’

In this hilarious, fast-paced comedy, the residents of one small trailer park are thrown for a loop when just before the holidays they discover they’re being double-crossed by the county. By the time this full-tilt story climaxes, you’ll have doubled your Christmas spirit. “A Doublewide, Texas Christmas” is on stagenow through Dec. 8, at The Marco Players Theater, Marco Town Center Mall, 1089 N. Collier Blvd., Marco Island. Shows are Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. and are $32 or $34. Attend the first week of the show and automatically be entered in a drawing to win a dinner cruise for two on The Marco Island Princess. Tickets are on sale at www.TheMarcoPlayers.com or by calling the box office at 239-642-7270. 

American Sand Sculpting Championship

The 33rd annual sand-sculpting event brings top-tier sand-sculpting artists to the beach. Includes more than 30 sculptors, plus vendors, demonstrations, live bands, kids activities and the new Sand Under the Stars event on Dec. 30, where the sculptures will be illuminated from 6-9 p.m. The festival takes place 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, through Dec. 1. Cost: $8 (free for ages 4 and younger). Held on the beach behind The Wyndham Garden Hotel, 6890 Estero Blvd., Fort Myers Beach. Information: fmbsandsculpting.com.

‘Night Lights’

From 6 to 9 p.m. every day, Nov. 29 through Jan. 5, at Naples Botanical Garden, 4820 Bayshore Drive, Naples. Stroll through the Garden, and marvel at the beauty of our collections illuminated in thousands of lights. Soak up the spirit of the season with family, friends, and loved ones as you sample specialty menu items from the Garden’s own Fogg Café and sip on a signature cocktail in celebration of this special time of year. Make a wish on a Wishing Tree, or hum along to live music every evening, including performances from Opera Naples Youth Chorus, Naples Ballet, a selection of talented artists from Artis-Naples, and more. Cost: $25, Nov. 29 through Dec. 15; $30, Dec. 16 through Jan. 5. Information: 239-325-1354 or naplesgarden.org.

One-act comedies from playwright Natalie King

Last chance to see The Studio Players perform three one-act comedies from the long-time Naples resident.  now through Dec. 1. $25. Joan Jenks Auditorium at the Golden Gate Community Center, 4701 Golden Gate Parkway, Naples. Information: thestudioplayers.org.


‘Magritte: Reflections on Another World’

Baker Museum reopens Sunday, Dec. 1, for the first time since water from Hurricane Irma forced it to close in September 2017. And it’s doing it with this major exhibit: Five paintings and one gouache by surrealist master René Magritte, including "La Tour d'Ivoire” and "Shéhérezade.” They’re on loan for five years and being displayed in their own gallery. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. It’s closed on Mondays. Admission is free in December. Baker Museum, 5833 Pelican Bay Blvd., Naples. Information: 597-1111 or artisnaples.org.

Pets on Parade

Dress your pets in their holiday best! Christmas Island Style presents Pets on Parade from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m., Dec. 3 at CJ’s on the Bay in the Esplanade, 760 North Collier Blvd., Marco Island. Information: www.christmasislandstyle.com.

Christmas Box Angel ceremony

For all parents and grandparents who have one thing in common, the loss of a child or grandchild, Marco Island’s Christmas Box Angel ceremony is 6 p.m., Dec. 6 at the Marco Island Cemetery, 489 W. Elkcam Circle. The ceremony provides parents and grandparents the opportunity to sit down quietly to remember their child, celebrate their life and provide comfort and a way to endure the Christmas season. Candles and white carnations will be provided to everyone as part of the Angel program.

File: Kiwanis Club of Marco Island’s 7th Annual Marco Island Kiwanis Family 5K race will be held at 8 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 7.

Family 5K

Kiwanis Club of Marco Island’s 7th Annual Marco Island Kiwanis Family 5K race will be held at 8 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 7. This event is family-friendly and is for all ages and abilities. The race will start and finish at Tigertail Beach and will go through the Hideaway Beach neighborhood. Strollers are welcome. Net proceeds from this event will fund the Marco Island Kiwanis Club's service projects for local children. Adults (age 18 and over) $20 plus $2.50 sign-up fee; high school, middle school and elementary students (age 6-17) $15, plus $2.50 sign-up fee. Information, contact Tim Clune @ 248-980-6142 or  tclune@gmail.com .

Tree lighting

The annual tree lighting will be held at 6 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 7, at Veterans Community Park, 901 Park Ave., Marco Island. Information: www.christmasislandstyle.com.


Come to historic Everglades City from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 7, for Art-in-the-Glades where local arts and crafts will be for sale in McLeod Park. Information: Marya, 239-695-2905. 

Tigertail cleanup

Friends of Tigertail will host their quarterly cleanup of Tigertail Beach from 7:30 until 10 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 7. The parking lot will be closed from 7:30 until 9:30 due to another event. Garbage bags and plastic gloves provided. Wear shoes that may get wet. Also, sunscreen and a hat. Bring a grabber and a reusable water container to reduce waste. All youth participants receive certificates for volunteering. Information: www.FriendsofTigertail.com or 239-394-1470.

Left Bank art fest

From 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Marco Island YMCA, outdoors in the grassy lot on the corner of San Marco Road and Sandhill Street. Juried artists include photographers, jewelry, paintings, pottery, glass, metal and more. Free admission and parking. Information: 239-290-7927.

Victorian holiday tea

Marco Island Center for the Arts will be celebrating the season of joy-filled merriment and heartwarming memories as the public is invited to attend a Victorian holiday tea from 3 until 5 p.m., Friday, Dec. 13. The program carries on the legacy of the Holiday tea created by former Art Center Board member and presenter extraordinaire, Jackie Pierce. There is no charge to attend but reservations are necessary as seating is very limited. The Naples Carolers, acapella vocal quartet in elegant Victorian costume will bring the songs of the season to the gallery. To reserve please contact Marco Island Center for the Arts at 239-394-4221. The Center is located on 1010 Winterberry Drive. Normal business hours are 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Cookies and Milk with Santa

From 10 a.m. until noon, Saturday, Dec. 14. Santa will be flying in via helicopter on the Mackle Park field! Afterwards, bring your Christmas list to Santa and enjoy cookies and milk. Information: cityofmarcoisland.com.

Holiday street parade

Prepare yourself for bright lights, big floats and holiday music favorites at the annual street parade on Saturday, Dec. 14, along San Marco Road, from Balfour Drive to Barfield Drive. The festivities begin at 6:30 p.m. so bring your lawn chairs and dress in your favorite holiday clothes. Information: christmasislandstyle.com.

Holiday boat parade

The annual holiday boat parade takes to the Marco river from 6-8 p.m., Dec. 21. Recommended viewing spots include The Esplanade on Smokehouse Bay, the Snook Inn on the Marco River and the Marco Island Yacht Club. Information: www.christmasislandstyle.com.

Soccer camp

The annual All-Pro Holiday Soccer Camp, for all area players, will once again be held at the Marco island Charter Middle School on Dec. 27, 28, and 29. There are two sessions scheduled for each day. Sessions will consist of technical/skill work, tactical concepts, and both small and large sized games.  Former professional player and Coach, Gary Hindley, a resident of Marco Island, will once again direct the camp. It is for players of all levels, and will have three separate groupings for elementary, middle, high school players. Information and/or to register, email a request gjhallpro@aol.com.


Art at the Marco Island Library

The Marco Island Public Library and the Marco Island Foundation for the Arts work cooperatively to provide art shows at the Marco Library branch on Heathwood Drive. November and December 2019 will feature a collection of original watercolors by Marco Island artist Wanda Coady. Coady has painted exclusively in watercolor for 40 years. Inspiration for many of her paintings comes from travel in a variety of countries around the world. 

JCMI big winner was Marilyn Flynn of Bedford, NH; here with committee member Shirley Posner.

Monday Night Bingo

Bingo is played every Monday evening at the Synagogue located at 991 Winterberry Drive, Marco Island. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.; Bonanza is posted at 6:15 p.m. and the game is called at 7 p.m. A complimentary supper is served to each player consisting of a Kosher hot dog, a special roll, relish, sauerkraut, pickles, chips, coffee, tea, pastry, ice cream and fruit. The cost of a two pack is $17, and a three pack is $24. The game is open to the public. Information: 239-642 0800.

K of C Bingo

The Knights of Columbus San Marco Council #6344 host a Bingo Night in the San Marco Parish Center on Thursdays through Nov. 14. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and Bingo starts at 7. This event was open to the public and everyone was invited for an evening of fun and games.

Farmer’s market at Veterans Community Park

The popular Marco Island Farmer’s Market has returned to Veterans Community Park, held from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Wednesdays, at Veterans Community Park, 901 Park Avenue. Local Southwest Florida vendors will be selling home good items and crafts Items include: fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, salsa, sauces, fresh flowers, seafood, soaps, and much more. Information: cityofmarcoisland.com/calendar.

Rookery Bay

Touch, see and explore Southwest Florida’s coastal environment at the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center. Experience hands-on, interactive exhibits including marine-life touch tanks and habitat displays. Enjoy trails, naturalist-led programs, nature-viewing bridge over the water and more. Kids and adults alike can explore the center and discover the plants, fish and wildlife that call Rookery Bay Research Reserve’s 110,000 acres home. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for kids 6-12, and free for kids under 6. Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and is located at 300 Tower Road, Naples. Information rookerybay.org or 239-530-5940.

Science Saturdays

Rookery Bay’s Science Saturdays are now year-round and free for kids 12 and under. Different coastal theme each Saturday. Admission $5 for adults, free for kids 12 and under. Enjoy eco-crafts, a presentation, a featured film and our “Lessons in Laboratories” program from 11-11:45 a.m. Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and is located at 300 Tower Road, Naples. Information rookerybay.org or 239-530-5940.

Friends of Rookery Bay expands eco-tour offerings

Friends of Rookery Bay now offers guided boat trips in addition to guided kayak trips that explore the 110,000-acre Rookery Bay Reserve in Naples. All tours are small groups led by active local biologists, certified naturalists and certified kayaking instructors with Rising Tide Explorers, the Friends of Rookery Bay’s exclusive eco-tour partner. Learn more and book at rookerybay.org or call 239-530-5972.

Senior Softball

The Marco Island Senior Softball League has resumed play at Winterberry Park on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Pick-up games are scheduled each of those days at 10:15 a.m., Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Anybody interested in a friendly game of softball can participate, with all skill levels welcomed. While the minimum age for regular league games is 55, age limits are not strictly enforced for pick-up games. Information: 239-642-2930.

Key Marco Cat 

The Marco Island Historical Society (MIHS) celebrates its 25th Anniversary with the culmination of their quest to bring home the enigmatic Key Marco Cat and other rare 500 to 1,500-year-old Pre-Columbian Native American artifacts discovered on Marco Island in 1896. The artifacts return on loan from the Smithsonian Institution and University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. They will be showcased in an exhibit at the Marco Island Historical Museum from now through April 2021. The Marco Island Historical Museum is located at 180 S. Heathwood Drive. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission is free. For information, call 239.389.6447 or visit www.theMIHS.org.

Naturalist-Led Kayak Tours

Join Rookery Bay Research Reserve for a kayak adventure into the beautiful back waters of Rookery Bay Reserve with our exclusive ecotour partner, Rising Tide Explorers! All the guides are active local biologists, certified naturalists and certified kayaking instructors making them the most qualified guides in the region. The whole family can enjoy a memorable and educational adventure into the estuary. With our kayak tours, guests paddle through beautiful mangrove tunnels, teeming mudflats and intricate oyster reefs while searching for amazing wildlife like sea stars, large snails, birds, dolphins and manatees! Get out and explore the backwaters Rookery Bay Research Reserve. Visit rookerybay.org to register for tours today. Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and is located at 300 Tower Road, Naples. Information rookerybay.org or 239-530-5940.

Calling all friends over 60

Join the Marco YMCA and Our Daily Bread Food Pantry for a free lunch the third Wednesday of each month at Marco Lutheran Church. With the support of local restaurants, businesses and sponsors, a luncheon (free of charge) is open to all area residents “60 or better.” Each monthly event includes a time for networking, lunch, a program, and door prizes.  Rides are also offered. Information: 706-566-8532.  

Lupus support

The Marco/Naples lupus support group meets the third Saturday of each month at Physicians Regional Medical Center, 8300 Collier Blvd, Naples. Meetings are held from 10:30 a.m. until noon in the Palm Dining Room.  Open to all patients, families and interested parties. Learn to live and cope with Lupus, get current information. Contact Marilyn, 239-398-4800 or Jan, 239-389-2749.

Round Robin Tennis

Round Robin Tennis is available at various times and days for men and women at the Greater Marco Family YMCA, 101 Sand Hill Street, Marco Island. Eight clay courts are available. Round Robins are free to Marco YMCA members and $15 for community participants. Players must register to play in Round Robins. Registration or information: 239-394-3144, ext. 224.


Imagination Ball

The American Cancer Society presents “A Celebration for a Cure,” the 2020 Imagination Ball, March 6, at the JW Marriott Marco Island. This celebration of life will feature both live and silent auctions, fine food, music and so much more. The celebration will burst with hope and good cheer as the prestigious Grado Award is presented to Curt and Jacquie Koon of CJ’s on the Bay in honor of their dedication and support of the American Cancer Society. For more information: 239-642-6217 or Sue.Olszak@cancer.org.

For more event listings, navigate to the Entertainment section and click on the WOW To Do List at marconews.com. Calendar items must be emailed to mail@marconews.com and should be submitted at least a week before desired publication.