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JANUARY

Speaker series  

Retired IRS Director, Thomas Eastwood, will be in Disseler Hall at United Church of Marco Island on from 2 until 3:30 p.m., Jan. 22. On the 15th he will present on the topic, "The Pueblo Incident: Cold War Intelligence," it will include a review of cold war intelligence; especially the seizure of the US spy ship Pueblo in 1968 by North Korea. On the 22nd he will present on the topic, "Comey's Higher Loyalty," it will include a fact based analysis of: political influence of federal agencies (FBI, DOJ, CIA, IC, IRS); Martha Stewart; Rudy Giuliani; enhanced interrogation, warrantless surveillance; the Clinton Investigation; Russian election meddling, James Comey and Andrew McCabe.

More: 3 To Do: Mullet Fest, Coffee with Cop, more

Winter Wonderland Dinner/Dance

The annual Winter Wonderland Dinner/Dance will be hosted by the San Marco Columbiettes from 6:30 until 10 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 25, at the San Marco Parish Center, 851 San Marco Rd., Marco Island. Dinner menu will include salad, prime rib dinner with all the trimmings, dessert and coffee with cash bar. Substitution for beef will be available upon request at time of ticket purchase. There will be a 50/50 drawing and fabulous raffle prizes. Entertainment for your listening and dancing pleasure will be provided by the duo of “Billy Dean & Dawn.”  Tickets are on sale at the Parish Office at $65 per person. Information:  Barbara DeRosa at 239-272-0158, or Mary Cay Moll at 239-394-1016, or Joan Pidherny at 239-642-1447. 

Center presents chalk art

Marco Island Center for the Arts presents Chalk Art from 2 until 5 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 25 at the Marco Island Center for the Arts, 1010 Winterberry Drive, Marco Island. The center will host this event, for all ages, in its adjacent parking lot. Even though this is a free event, call or RSVP online today. The Art Center welcomes kids, adults, families and groups. Be prepared to get creative, down, and dusty with us.  All materials are provided free of charge. To let us know you will be attending call the Art Center at 239-394-4221 or visit marcoislandart.org/event/chalk-art-2020/.

McConville presentation

At 7 p.m., Jan. 28, Naturalist Bob McConville returns to Rose History Auditorium, 180 South Heathwood Drive, Marco Island, for another fun and fact-filled presentation: “Out with the old, in with the new.” This fascinating program is a look back at 2019 and a peek at what’s happening in 2020. Dolphin births in north Marco continued to soar this year, turtle hatchlings set a record and some migratory birds took center stage in our area. So, what can we expect in 2020? Come to Rose History Auditorium and hear McConville address dolphins, turtles, sharks, Everglades heath, migratory birds and many other popular topics of the day. The program is free to Marco Island Historical Society members, non-members pay $10. Information: 239-389-6447.

FEBRUARY

Golden Gala honors Island Country Club Foundation, Rosemary Wick

Marco Island Center for the Arts invites the community to join in as it celebrates 50 years of bringing art to Marco and beyond at The Golden Gala at 5:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 1. Gala chairs are Sue and Russ Darrow and the event will take place at the Hideaway Beach Club.  This year the honoree will be The Island Country Club Foundation for its support of programs for children and youth. There will also be a special acknowledgement of former Board President, Rosemary Wick. Information: marcoislandart.org.

Everglades area visitor center ceremony

Historic Everglades City has so many interesting places to see and things to do but where do we get information about them? No problem with the opening of the new Everglades Visitor Center. A ceremony will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Feb. 1, with Mayor Howie Grimm cutting the ribbon at the renovated premises in 207 West Broadway, the salmon-colored building opposite the famous Rod & Gun Club. The Visitor Center is also the Trail Town headquarters for the city which was recognized in 2019 by the Florida's Office of Greenways & Trails as an important hub for recreational activities, such as paddling, hiking and biking. The Visitor Center is operated by the Everglades Society for Historic Preservation. The center is open from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. during the winter season. Information: visitevergladescity.com.

Women’s group to honor Fiala

The Marco Island chapter of P.E.O International will honor long-time Collier County Commissioner Donna Fiala as “Woman of the Year,” Feb. 5, at a gala event that will do double-duty as a fundraiser for a variety of educational assistance programs for women. Guests will have two separate opportunities on Feb. 5 to enjoy this event, a preview party and an evening gala. The event will also include a silent auction of high-end items and services. The preview party, 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., will include complimentary sparkling wine and hors d’oeuvres.  Preview Party tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. The evening gala with Donna Fiala begins at 5:30 p.m., with dinner at  7 p.m. Evening gala tickets are $125.  For ticket information, call 239-231-3972. The event will be held at Marco Lutheran Church, 525 N. Collier Blvd., Marco Island.

MIHS presents ‘Putting on the Ritz’

The Marco Island Historical Society (MIHS) presents the Putting on the Ritz gala on Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Island Country Club on Marco Island. The gala includes a reception, silent and live auctions, dinner and dancing to the music of popular vocalist and bandleader Suzanne Sole and her band. Smart Roaring Twenties attire is encouraged. Information: 239-389-6447 or visit www.themihs.org.

Left Bank art fest

From 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 9 in the breeze ways of the Esplanade, 760 North Collier Blvd., Marco Island. Juried artists include photography, oil and acrylic paintings, jewelry, ceramic sculptures, pottery, wood, glass, stone and more. Free admission and parking. Information: 239-537-5921.

‘Science Nites’ at Rookery Bay Reserve

Rookery Bay Research Reserve is launching a monthly “Science Nites” series January through April as an outside-the-box afterwork or dinner option. The evenings include food, drink, hands-on science fun and a presentation by a science expert. Dates and topics are: Jan. 28, “Juvenile Bull Sharks and the Ten Thousand Islands;” Feb. 25, "Current Research on Bottlenose Dolphin Communities in Southwest Florida;" March 31, "Ocean Trivia;" and April 7, "How Citizen Science Can Help Solve the Ocean Plastic Pollution Crisis." The event is from 6 until 8 p.m. at the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center, 300 Tower Road. Cost is $15 per evening and registration is required at rookerybay.org or by calling 239-530-5972.

ONGOING

Kinetic art movement celebrated

Marco Island Center for the Arts new exhibition is “Kinetics: Bodies in Motion.” This exhibition features the work of five artists that represent a variety of sources of movement. The exhibition is on display from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, now through Feb. 4. The artists featured in the show are: Gary Day, Mary Day, Karla Kunzeman, Tara O’Neill and Ann Vreeland. The motion investigated in their work can be generated by air, gravity, human contact and light.

In the La Petite Galerie: The work of Nancy Norman is on display. Norman has been visiting Marco Island since the only way to get there was by boat or the swing bridge to Goodland!  Since returning as an adult to the island she has worked with painting in pastels, acrylics and oils. Norman is also a member of the Art Center’s Clay Guild. She said she has “become all fired up about ceramics to apply her appreciation of color, form and design.” Her show will consist of a series of wall hangings, sculptures and functional pieces that illustrate Florida’s flora and fauna.

‘Ms Conceptions’ exhibit

The Florida Chapter of the National Association of Women Artists has been invited by the curator and museum manager of the Marco Island Historical Museum and Gallery to exhibit its members’ work. The exhibition, titled “Ms Conceptions,” is on display now and closes on Jan. 30, at the Museum’s Marco Island campus, located at 180 S. Heathwood Drive, Marco Island.  The exhibit was juried and judged by respected gallerist, Joseph Panarelli of Quidley and Company, Naples, Boston, Nantucket, and Westport. 

Parkinson support

The Marco Island Parkinson care partner support group will resume at 1:30 p.m., each Tuesday during season at United Church of Marco, 320 Barfield Drive, Marco Island. Spouses, parents, children, relatives or friends dealing with Parkinson disease or similar neurological diagnoses are welcome. Marco Island exercise class for persons with Parkinson’s is every Tuesday and Thursday. No need to pre-register. 

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. Through January features 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. 

Mah Jongg

Weekly Mah Jongg, 11 a.m. until 3 p.m., Thursdays through April at JCMI, 991 Winterberry Drive, Marco Island. Open to the public. RSVP to Shirley at 239-389-7872. 

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 hosts a Bingo Night every Thursday through April 2 in the San Marco Parish Center with the doors opening at 5:30 p.m. and Bingo starting at 7. This event was open to the public and everyone was invited for an evening of fun and games. Information: 239-389-5633 or marcoknights.com.

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.

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.

LATER

Women’s group to honor Fiala

The Marco Island chapter of P.E.O International will honor long-time Collier County Commissioner Donna Fiala as “Woman of the Year,” Feb. 5, at a gala event that will do double-duty as a fundraiser for a variety of educational assistance programs for women. Guests will have two separate opportunities on Feb. 5 to enjoy this event, a preview party and an evening gala. The event will also include a silent auction of high-end items and services. The preview party, 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., will include complimentary sparkling wine and hors d’oeuvres.  Preview Party tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. The evening gala with Donna Fiala begins at 5:30 p.m., with dinner at  7 p.m. Evening gala tickets are $125.  For ticket information, call 239-231-3972. The event will be held at Marco Lutheran Church, 525 N. Collier Blvd., Marco Island.

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.

Become a better boater

America’s Boating Club – Marco Island (ABClub-MI) recently announced its boating education program for the 2019-20 season. The curse meets for five 2.25 hour sessions over two and a half weeks. It will be offered on March 9. Information: Peggy Reiss at 239-213-8686.

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.

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