1. Prescribed burns planned near East Naples Jan. 21-27

Resource management staff at Rookery Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve have released plans for their first prescribed burns in 2018. Prescribed burns will commence each day around 9 a.m. as weather permits from January through March.

From Jan. 21 through 27, fires are planned for areas west of Collier Boulevard and south of Henderson Creek, and also on Keewaydin Island.

Rookery Bay Reserve staff coordinate burns with the Florida Forestry Service and work with partnering land managers and local fire departments to ensure the burns are conducted safely and efficiently.

Residents in the adjacent areas will see and possibly smell smoke from the fire. Fire personnel will contact visitors in the area to ensure their safety while traveling near activity areas and will carefully monitor the fire throughout the day until it extinguishes.

"The main purpose of these burns is to reduce fuel loads and manage wildlife habitat," said Rookery Bay Reserve Resource Management Coordinator Jeff Carter. "Prescribed burns also help to increase ecosystem diversity, while assisting in invasive plant control."

For more information about Rookery Bay visit

2. City Council meets Monday

The Marco Island City Council will meet at 5:30 p.m,. Monday, in the community room, 51 Bald Eagle Drive.

Council will discuss the findings of the Ad Hoc Parking Solutions Committee and consider forming an Ad Hoc Hurricane Review Committee.

There are no quasi-judicial public hearings or resolutions, and only one ordinance regarding stormwater control.

3. Marco Island Yacht Club to install new bridge officers

On Saturday, Jan. 20, the Marco Island Yacht Club will hold its annual gala event, the Change of Watch and Commodore’s Ball. New officers of the Bridge, a nautical term for center of operations, will be installed at the formal Change of Watch ceremony.


The time-honored installation ceremony, Change of Watch, is based on military tradition in which responsibility, authority and accountability are transferred from the current leader to the new commander. Outgoing Commodore Lois Dixon will hand over command to the new Commodore Robert Winterhalter. At the Marco Island Yacht Club, this is signified by lowering the past commodore’s burgee (triangular flag) and replacing it with the new commodore’s burgee. 

The Commodore has overall responsibility for the cruising fleets, sailing regattas, boating programs, matters relating to the Florida Council of Yacht Clubs and social activities.

The festivities commence at 5:30 p.m.


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