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Category: Islamorada News

ISLAMORADA RESIDENTS CAN ATTEND MEETINGS IN-PERSON

Islamorada Village Council Chambers are open to village residents who wish to attend regularly scheduled and special meetings. Those taking seats inside the chambers at the Founders Park Community Center are strongly encouraged by the village to wear masks, but they’re not required.  Members of the public can still view and listen to meetings from their homes by watching Monroe County’s MCTV channel 77 or logging on via Zoom.  A special meeting called by Mayor Buddy Pinder on May 13 lasted just over an hour, as members discussed the next steps following Gov. Ron DeSantis’ set of executive...

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Masks encouraged, but not required, among village meeting goers

Islamorada Village Council Chambers are open to village residents who wish to attend regularly scheduled and special meetings. Those taking seats inside the chambers at the Founders Park Community Center are strongly encouraged by the village to wear masks, but they’re not required.  Members of the public can still view and listen to meetings from their homes by watching Monroe County’s MCTV channel 77 or logging on via Zoom.  A special meeting called by Mayor Buddy Pinder on May 13 lasted just over an hour, as members discussed the next steps following Gov. Ron DeSantis’ set of executive orders...

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SWIM ZONE AT POPULAR BEACH EXPECTED BEFORE HOLIDAY WEEKEND

Boats heading to the popular bayside beach in Islamorada will soon need to anchor farther from the shore. Those that don’t could face fines.  Twenty white buoys will soon be placed to create a swim/vessel exclusion zone at Port Antigua and White Marlin Beach on Lower Matecumbe Key. The idea to push boats 300 feet from the mean high water line — and making people swim to the popular area — saw the village council’s unanimous approval last August.  Enacting a boating-restricted, swim-only area off the beach looks to address ongoing safety issues as well as problems from the commotion that’s seen...

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History of Diving Museum celebrates military

This May, the History of Diving Museum celebrates past and active military service members through special programming and visiting opportunities. Since opening in 2005, the History of Diving Museum’s founders, Joe and Sally Bauer, instituted a program to extend free admission to active duty military service members. The museum’s military outreach expanded when they joined the Blue Star Museums program at its inception in 2010. Thanks to the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), Blue Star Families and the Defense Department, over 2,000 museums participate annually with a goal to help service...

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12 FINALISTS IN RUNNING FOR ISLAMORADA MANAGER

A special meeting of Islamorada Village Council will examine 12 candidates in the running for the next village manager position.  Set for Wednesday, May 19 at 5:30 p.m., the dais will hear from the search firm the village hired, Colin Baenziger, regarding the selection process and the next steps. Council will mull and select finalists for interview next month. Candidate salaries will also be discussed.  Former village manager Seth Lawless’ resignation for health reasons last summer led the village council to hire Baenziger. Maria Bassett, village finance director, has served as acting...

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ISLAMORADA MOOSE MEMBERS RECOGNIZED FOR BIKE DRIVE

Ken “Sarge” Keidel, of Florida Keys Toys for Tots and an active member of the Islamorada Moose Lodge, and Krissy Carnahan, president of the Islamorada Moose Lodge, recently received the Toys for Tots award in the name of Marine Pfc. Bruce W. Carter, who received the prestigious Medal of Honor award posthumously. The Toys for Tots award recognized the local bicycle drive during Christmastime, when the Moose donated around 70 bikes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Islamorada Moose members Brian Geblaw and Andy Rivers assembled a number of bikes before handing them over to the Toys for Tots. The post...

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Freebee Tesla Model X in service in Islamorada

A new Tesla Model X Freebee vehicle is providing residents and visitors with transportation service from upper Plantation Key to Lower Matecumbe Key.  The Freebee Electric Vehicle Ridesharing Service began providing transportation on Upper Matecumbe Key in November 2018. The village was able to expand the popular Freebee program to serve all of Islamorada in March 2020 with two new larger electric vehicles that can drive on the highway and cross bridges. The latest addition to the Freebee fleet in Islamorada brings the total vehicles to three, and they all travel the full distance of the village...

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Health officer to brief village on pandemic, large-scale events

Will large-scale events in the village of Islamorada return? Council members will hear from Monroe County’s health officer regarding the ongoing coronavirus pandemic at a Thursday, April 29 meeting.  Bob Eadie, health officer of Monroe County. CONTRIBUTED Bob Eadie, the top health official, appeared via Zoom during the council’s March 4 meeting. During his presentation, he relayed concerns with the spring break that was approaching then, and the flow of visitors it would bring to the Keys. As a result, the dais was unanimous in extending a halt on the issuance of temporary use permits for events...

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FISHING COMMUNITY RALLIES BEHIND ARTIST WHO LOST MONTHS OF WORK

Imagine this: You are a fine-arts painter during the pandemic. Quarantined at home, you cast about for something to do, just like the rest of the world. Then — bingo — you stumble onto a new painting technique and become obsessed.  Feverishly perfecting your work and making print after beautiful print, a gallery owner falls in love with your paintings, then requests a shipment so they can be displayed in the gallery.  You roll up all your paintings in a tube and confidently ship all paintings via FedEx — dutifully requesting tracking information and insurance. Then the entire shipment is lost....

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Alliance seeks to keep residents apprised of village issues

A recently-formed “alliance” is setting out to keep Islamorada residents up to date and informed on the various matters happening in the village. Creation of the Islamorada Community Alliance began last year by residents Cheryl Meads, former councilwoman and current South Florida Water Management District governing board member; longtime resident Capt. Ed Davidson; resident Sue Miller; John Kocol, former Island Hammock Pet Hospital owner; and Tom Raffanello, resident who’s running for county commission.  Raffanello said the ICA’s mission focuses on the people by giving them the necessary information...

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