Sommer Family Comforted By A Community Of Kin

Two days after Estero High School Coach Jeff Sommer died, his son, Adam, took his final test at the Fort Myers Fire Academy. It’s what his father would have wanted him to do, he said. He passed the test. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

America’s Winter Market Garden, Right Next Door

(Part 2)

Recently, the University of Florida’s Collier County Extension organized a tour of Immokalee agricultural businesses. The last issue of the Spotlight described the visit to American Farms, which grows 28 million ornamental plants each year. More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:13 PM

The Imperial River Stars in Second Annual Bonita Springs Film Festival

The possibilities are endless when filmmakers, professionals and amateurs, create their films for the Second Annual Bonita Springs Film Festival scheduled for November 5, 2015. Dramas. Comedies. Who dunnits. Pirate adventures. Romance. More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:13 PM

Taking The Long Way

When Don Huprich lines up at the start line for this year’s Boston Marathon, he’ll have the support of his entire community behind him. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Non-stop Flights To San Juan Start May 3rd

Additional Destinations On The Radar

Ricardo Rolon has been living in Southwest Florida for 11 years and flying at least once a year to San Juan, Puerto Rico. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Peter O’Flinn, Sr. Announces City Council Run

Meet The Candidate

I am today declaring my intention to run for Bonita Springs City Council in District 4. The district includes Bonita Bay, Cedar Creek, Highland Woods and the area east of Old 41 in the general vicinity of the Bonita Golf and Country Club property. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Preserving The Old Stories

At the Estero Historical Society, we take pride in our town’s history. As we grow and continue to discover the pioneering families, we are committed to preserving the history of Estero. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:17 PM

All Miked Up

Bill Banfield has a megaphone, and he’s using it for good.

Every now and then, when a new client walks into investment advisor Bill Banfield’s office, they stop and say, “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” It’s not that they know Banfield personally. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:16 PM

Fred Forbes Announces Run for District 6 Council Seat

I am excited to announce my intention to run for Bonita Springs City Council, District 6, where Bill Lonkart, the incumbent, is term limited. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:16 PM

Steers, Hogs and Midway Rides At County Fairs This Season

The first time Caleb Snell, 11, took care of a hog for a year and then sold it at the Collier County Fair Livestock Auction “he was a little upset, a little teary,” said his mom, Angela Snell, the leader of the Bonita Springs County Line 4-H club. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

Headed To Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Now Looking For Community Support

Naples — Noah Evans, 11th grader and member of the Gulf Coast High School Band, remembers the moment last Spring when he heard the news. “It was the most thrilling feeling I’ve ever experienced. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

Estero Village Councilmembers Take First Steps

Estero — “My first two words of wisdom to the new council members would be ‘Don’t panic,’” said Jim Boesch, newly elected village council member representing District 5. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

She Sells Sea Shells Down by the Seashore

Sanibel Shell Festival Caters to Collectors and the Curious

It’s not just a children’s nursery rhyme. For shell collectors, it’s shell heaven. Young and old will be selling shells, competing for prizes on shell art and teaching visitors all about live shells or mollusks. More...

Posted 2/25/2015 12:34 PM

With Big-box Retailer on Horizon, Neighbors Adjust

Estero — According to neighbors, any surprises brought about by the long-discussed Estero Walmart under construction at U.S. More...

Posted 2/25/2015 12:34 PM

Estero Election Spotlight

District 7 Candidates

Jim Wilson and Walter Zalisko, profiled below, will vie for the Estero Village Council seat representing the easternmost district, number 7. More...

Posted 2/11/2015 01:45 PM

Wind in Their Sails

Kiteboarders Find Big Thrills On Southwest Florida’s Beaches

Naples — On a blustery and cold (for Florida) day, the Naples Beach entryways are mostly deserted. A few tourists shuffle glumly by, determined to enjoy their beach getaway despite the unrelenting winds. There’s not a local in sight. More...

Posted 2/11/2015 01:44 PM

Emergency on the Links

Southwest Florida boasts one of the largest concentrations of golf courses in the country, and on any given day, thousands of local golfers enjoy their favorite sport and pastime. More...

Posted 2/11/2015 01:44 PM

Estero Election Spotlight

District 5 Candidates

When the deadline to qualify for the election of Estero Village Council passed January 16, three candidates had earned a spot on the ballot under District 5. All three are residents of Stoneybrook. Jim Boesch More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

What is the perfect gift for Valentine’s Day?

. Daniel Wagner, Naples/ Boston “Love” More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

Weathering The Storms of Life

A few years ago, a few members of Estero’s Summit Church began meeting to encourage one another in an effort of effecting emotional, behavioral and spiritual change in their lives. More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

Estero Election Spotlight: District 1, 4 and 6 Candidates

In this issue, Spotlight shines on Estero Village Council candidates in districts 1, 4 and 6. At press time, districts 1 and 6 each had one candidate running unopposed. In the next issue, we’ll introduce you to candidates in districts 5 and 7. More...

Posted 1/14/2015 06:42 PM

The Gift of Life

For one local Southwest Floridian, one kidney is more than enough.

Tracey Bey-Mohammed’s mentor in the Navy clearly changed her life. More...

Posted 1/14/2015 06:41 PM

Estero Historical Society and Estero Chamber of Commerce Sponsor Essay Contest

The Estero Historical Society and the Estero Chamber of Commerce are coming together to sponsor an Essay Contest for Middle School and High School students living in Estero. More...

Posted 12/31/2014 10:58 AM

Making a Difference in Ethiopia

Estero — Twenty-six year old Estero raised Carly Gallo describes herself as a, “Humanitarian at heart and an architect by trade.” Since graduating from Florida International University in 2010 she’s followed her strategic plan More...

Posted 12/31/2014 10:57 AM

 

Giving Back

A New Scoreboard For The Tennis Team

Bonita Springs — Sometimes tennis is just not enough. Maggie Otero read about YMCA READS and like the Pied Piper, she led members from her tennis team to Bonita Springs Elementary School. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Building Bridges In The Community

On March 9th, students at Bonita Springs Middle Center for the Arts presented a big thank you. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:16 PM

Avow Hospice Offers Comfort, Care and Understanding

While other people go to parties to meet friends, 93 year-old George Merritt visits hospitals to make friends. Like many others bringing comfort and peace to individuals nearing the end of life, Merritt is a volunteer with Avow Hospice in Naples. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

Arts & Entertainment

Shining A Light On The New York Night

There is film noir; and then there is the real thing — unfiltered noir. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Showtime

Artis–Naples June 4 Mudbone June 7 Festival of Great Organ Music June 18 Chuggington Live! More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Capturing The Glow In The Night Sky

Artist Spotlight

The Sanibel Lighthouse, featured on this month’s cover framed by the Milky Way galaxy, was a first place winner of the 2014 Wikipedia Summer of Monuments national competition for photographing U.S. historic sites. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Restaurants

RESTAURANT GUIDE

A Table Apart More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:40 AM

RESTAURANT GUIDE

A Table Apart More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:14 PM

RESTAURANT GUIDE

A Table Apart More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:04 PM

Misc

From the Publisher

Thank you for visiting swspotlight.com. The Spotlight is Southwest Florida’s premiere news magazine serving the communities of North Naples, Bonita Springs and Estero. More...

Posted 5/14/2013 06:01 PM

Advertise

The Southwest Spotlight News Magazine has the largest audited circulation in the Greater Bonita Springs Area, at over 20,000 copies. More...

Posted 5/14/2013 05:57 PM

Contact Us

Southwest SpotlightBy Emailinfo@swspotlight.comBy Phone(239) 287-6474By PostPO Box 1946Bonita Springs, FL 34133 More...

Posted 5/14/2013 05:52 PM

Lucky to Be Alive

Every day since joining the Army in June, 1943, Belleville, New Jersey native Pfc. Nicholas Scarola, has been grateful to be alive. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Mission Five of the Collier County Honor Flight

Several months ago I applied to become a guardian for Collier County Honor Flight. If you are not familiar, honor flight is a program which honors America’s veterans for their sacrifices by transporting them to Washington, D.C. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

The Evolution of the Food Pyramid

Healthy Choices

As our understanding of nutrition has evolved, so has the traditional food pyramid. The first U.S. More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:13 PM

Interim Village Manager Finds It’s A Bit Lonely At The Top

Estero — The Fire Rescue staff saved him from despair with the phone system and the copy machine, but the trash and the potted plants are another story. For his first few weeks in office, Interim Village Manager Peter G. More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:13 PM

Peace Officers Memorial Day

May 15th is Peace Officers Memorial Day. It was created by Congress on October 1, 1961 and signed into law one year later by President Kennedy. More...

Posted 4/29/2015 02:13 PM

America’s Winter Market Garden, Right Next Door

Agriculture is big business here. The heart of that business is just a short drive, but a world away, from the beaches of Naples and Bonita Springs. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Councilman Peter Simmons and Family Decide Not to Seek Another Term

On January 31, 2012 I was honored to be overwhelmingly elected to represent the citizens of Bonita Springs (District 4) on the City Council. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Ferreira to Seek District 1 Seat

Meet The Candidate

I am announcing my intention to be a candidate for election to the office of City Councilman, City of Bonita Springs, District 1. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Enhancing Public Participation in Estero

We have often been told by our fellow elected officials to expect that the public is going to be either absent at our meetings or protesting as an angry mob. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:17 PM

2016 Bonita City Council Elections

Bonita Springs City Council elections are scheduled for early 2016. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:16 PM

Fred Partin Looks Down The Decades At BSU

Longtime Bonita Springs Utilities executive director Fred Partin is wrapping up a career of more than three decades with the utility, which serves Bonita and large portions of Estero. By most any standard, he has seen change – and plenty of it. More...

Posted 4/1/2015 12:16 PM

Renowned Physician Says Plant Based Diet Can Prevent Heart Disease

The larger-than-life angiograms told the story. The patient’s cardiovascular disease was reversed. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

Catchin’ Crabs And Then Some

Fishing Fleet Continues To Thrive Alongside The Yachts

Naples — There are a lot of luxury yachts, party cruisers and speedboats moored in the docks around Tin City. But if you look closely, you can see a few trusty and true fishing boats passing in and out of Naples Bay. More...

Posted 3/19/2015 08:49 AM

A Cabinet For The Old Kitchen Water Pump

Recently, the Estero Historical Society received a donation of an antique water pump which was donated by the late Harry Boyle and his wife, Joyce. Dr. Kenneth Wisen set out to make a cabinet for it. Here is his description of the cabinet. More...

Posted 2/25/2015 12:34 PM

All The Right Steps

Irish Dance Is Alive in Southwest Florida Thanks To Tir Na Nog Academy of Irish Dance

Few things are quite as adorable as a troop of tiny girls dancing a perfect reel jig. But behind that row of bouncing curls and flouncing skirts are hours of practice and a patient motherdaughter duo of teachers. More...

Posted 2/25/2015 12:34 PM

Estero Candidates Profiles

District 1, 4 and 6 Candidates: More...

Posted 2/25/2015 10:59 AM

Dog Days in Winter at Bonita Springs Bark-N-Play Park

Excitement rippled through the crisp, damp air as the dark clouds broke and the rain stopped for the Saturday morning opening of the new Bark-N-Play dog park in Bonita Springs on East Terry. More...

Posted 2/11/2015 01:44 PM

I Like Mine Poached

When Brandy Lostracco and Ken Vandereecken, owners of the popular, Toast of Naples and Toast of Bonita Springs restaurants, received a ceaseand desist order from Toast of Chicago in November, they were shocked. More...

Posted 2/11/2015 01:44 PM

A Simple Question, Not So Simple Answer

Where do you live? It’s a simple question with a not-sosimple answer for some residents of the village of Estero. Some of them live within the 33967 ZIP code and their post office designation is Fort Myers. More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:30 PM

Penance for Popularity in Village Elections

In a twist worthy of O. Henry, it appears that some long time Estero leaders will be denied the chance to compete for the fouryear terms on the new Village Council. More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

Neon Deion Leads Parade of NFL Stars from Dunbar

The troubles of Dunbar, the hardscrabble collection of Fort Myers neighborhoods, are often fodder for mayhem portrayed on the local evening news. Dunbar suffers from illegal drugs, criminal activity and opportunity deficits. More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

Want a Ride? Grab a Cable at Fort Myers Park

North Fort Myers — You will get wet on this ride. In fact, that’s exactly the idea of cable parks, which started with some brainstorming among German engineers. More...

Posted 1/28/2015 02:29 PM

Rep. Clawson Sets Environmental Goals

Key Largo — Members of the Everglades Coalition recently heard loud and clear what many in Bonita Springs have known for some time. Rep. Curt Clawson is passionately committed to the conservation of Florida’s environment. More...

Posted 1/14/2015 06:41 PM

Humphries’ Doll Collection Gifted to Historical Society

Bonita Springs — Ann Humphries was a collector. She collected and made dolls and teddy bears and designed patterns for their outfits, embroidered, did needlepoint, created dioramas. More...

Posted 1/14/2015 06:41 PM

Estero Election Spotlight: District 2 and 3 Candidates

Estero — As Estero celebrates a new year and its rebirth as a village, candidates who want to govern this new municipality are gearing up for an election in March. More...

Posted 12/31/2014 10:58 AM

Business & Real Estate

Martin Fierro Brings the Open Range to Naples

Business Beat

North Naples — In “Martín Fierro,” the classic 19th century Argentinian folk poem, José Hernández glorifies the days when gauchos ruled the open range. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Tackling Health And Environmental Dangers At The Source

Business Beat

Naples — After twenty-five years as a deputy sheriff for Collier County, Sargent Jim Wenrich is now committed to protecting the health of Naples area residents and preserving our fragile environment for future generations. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

At $8.5 Million, Island Sale Gotta’ Keep ‘Em Smiling

Real Estate Watch

Flamingo Island, the funky cool Bonita Beach Road flea market, has been sold. And the price has to “keep the sellers smiling,” to paraphrase the business’s popular jingle. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

Commentary

Estero Village’s Bounty of Participation

Editorial

After nearly a month of trudging through the mundane, on April 10 the Estero Village council arrived at the sublime. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Consider The Michigan Left Turn

The traffic technique known to many as the “Michigan Left” is thought to have been developed by the chief engineer at General Motors who designed the US freeway system under President Eisenhower. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Wonder Gardens An Important Anchor For Downtown

Letter to the Editor

I just wanted to thank the City of Bonita Springs for supporting a loan to the Everglades Wonder Gardens. More...

Posted 4/15/2015 01:03 PM

Community

Fabulous Wines At The End Of The World

Bodega del Fin del Mundo is heaven for wine lovers. In English, the “Winery at the End of the World” makes some of the world’s best reds 800 kilometers (500 miles) south of Argentina’s famed Mendoza wine region. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:40 AM

Making Smart Choices At The Food Store

Food shopping can be a daunting and overwhelming task when trying to eat healthy. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:40 AM

What is Anxiety?

Part 1

Experiencing occasional anxiety is a normal part of life. Dealing with difficult situations, people or a financial struggle can make us feel nervous or anxious. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:40 AM

You're in the Spotlight

You're in the Spotlight

Applebee’s Cuts the Ribbon

Corkscrew Commons Applebee’s in Estero recently celebrated its remodel and grand reopening. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:40 AM

You're in the Spotlight

Spotlight Visits Churchill Downs

Bill Janes and friends brought the Spotlight to Churchill Downs to watch the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby. The Spotlight loves to travel and is willing to travel in checked bags or carry- ons. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM

You're in the Spotlight

Veterans’ Bricks Installed at Riverside Park

Thirty-one new bricks were installed in May at the Veterans Memorial Walkway that surrounds Riverside Park in downtown Bonita Springs. More...

Posted 5/27/2015 11:39 AM
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