This weekend, the seventh annual Island Hopper Songwriter Fest kicks off in the tropical setting of Captiva Island, Sept. 17-19.
Then it moves to historic downtown Fort Myers, Sept. 20-23, and wraps up on Fort Myers Beach, Sept. 24-26.
Island Hopper is the largest songwriter fest in Southwest Florida and offers a unique experience to interact with songwriters. This year, nearly 80 singer-songwriters from around the country will perform more than 100 shows.
This year’s lineup includes:
Hit-making headliners: Florida native, Michael Ray joins Island Hopper Songwriter Fest with three No. 1 songs, including “Kiss You in the Morning,” “Think a Little Less” and “One That Got Away.” He performs at Pinchers at The Marina at Edison Ford in downtown Fort Myers on Sept. 23
Singer-songwriter, author and winner of this year’s Academy of Country Music Award for New Male Artist of the Year, Jimmie Allen, will perform at Pink Shell Beach Resort & Marina on the final night of the festival, Sept. 26. Allen made history as the first Black artist to launch a career with two consecutive No. 1 songs on country radio with his hits, “Best Shot” and his second single, “Make Me Want To.” Allen is also slated to appear on this season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars.”
Tickets for both shows are available on the Island Hopper app and website. Tickets are limited.
Island Hopper app: While most of the festival performances are free, a few exclusive ticketed shows are available on the official festival app under the schedule tab. You can download the app in the App Store or on Google Play free of charge.
Island Hopper’s a winner: The 2019 Island Hopper Fest received four SunSational Awards through the Florida Festival & Events Association and the Southeast Tourism Society named Island Hopper one of its Top 20 events.
Island Hopper is produced by the Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau, iHeartMedia, Cat Country 107.1 and BMI, the largest music rights organization in the U.S. Visit IslandHopperFest.com. Follow the festival hashtag #islandhopperfest as well as the event’s Twitter, Instagram and Facebook feeds.
Roseanne is a very special girl who came to the Cape Coral Animal Shelter in January, saved from a horrible situation as a breeder dog outside Miami. Although she lived with other dogs in her past life, it has become very clear that she now prefers to spend her life with people rather than other animals.
Roseanne quickly became a volunteer and staff favorite and loves (almost) every human she meets. Because we are always at full capacity, Roseanne resides in the office our executive director—and she is the perfect tenant!
A few months ago, our executive director Liz McCauley started posting “Conversations with Roseanne” on her personal Facebook page and these posts were shared throughout the community. As a joke, Roseanne was given a “friend” named Bones–a dog she gets along with—and through these funny conversations, they have become engaged to be married!
As word spread of their upcoming nuptials, friends from near and far have sent well wishes, gifts, even purchased their wedding attire! Volunteers have planned the whole wedding, complete with bridesmaids, groomsmen, flowers, and a lovely outdoor ceremony in our big play yard here at the shelter.
Best of all, we are inviting the public to share this event with all of us.
If you would like to witness the wedding of Roseanne and Bones, please come to the shelter at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, September 11th.
The public is welcome to bring donations for Roseanne’s dowry, which she promises to share with the other pups at the shelter. (Our wish list can be found at Wish List – Cape Coral Animal Shelter)
No wedding would be complete without a champagne toast and special cupcakes, so we hope you will join us for this very special event. Of course, our greatest wish for Roseanne is that all this fanfare will get the attention of the perfect family who will adopt her and take her (and Bones) home forever.
The Lee County Library System is joining the American Library Association (ALA) to encourage people to sign up for a library card.
Libraries nationwide are marking September with Library Card Sign-up Month. People who live, work or go to school in Lee County are eligible to receive a library card. To sign up for a library card or to learn more about the library’s resources and programs, visit www.leelibrary.net/card or visit any branch.
Through access to technology, media resources and educational programs, a library card gives students the tools to succeed in the classroom. Libraries offer early literacy programs, resources to help with homework and language apps such as Rosetta Stone.
With more than 2 million items in the Lee County Library System collection, patrons of all ages can find options to entertain, get fit, assist with financial planning, take up a craft or try a new recipe. Patrons will find a variety of educational resources and activities, including:
practice tests for standardized and vocational exams
the Small Business Series
interactive instructor-led online courses
“From students starting their very first day of school to lifelong learners, our libraries enhance the community by offering in-person and virtual programs, along with reliable information and tools to serve students of all ages,” Library Director Mindi Simon said. “We are proud of the role libraries play in encouraging curiosity and spurring creativity. I encourage everyone to get their library card.”
The Lee County Library System, founded in 1964, has 13 branches. For more information about other library services and programs offered, visit www.leelibrary.net.
The Southwest Florida community is invited to join first responders and public officials at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, in downtown Fort Myers for a 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony that will mark the 20th year since the terrorist attack.
The event will be at Caloosa Sound Convention Center, 1374 Monroe St., Fort Myers, FL 33901. It’s free and open to the public. Doors will open at 7:45 a.m.
An array of agencies and organizations – including law enforcement, fire, public safety and airlines – will conduct the ceremony, which is expected to last about 90 minutes. The remembrance ceremony includes a national colors presentation, patriotic music and the reading of names of those who lost their lives in the line of duty.
Brief comments from officials will be made, including Fort Myers Mayor Kevin Anderson, Fort Myers Councilman Johnny Streets, Lee County Commission Chairman Kevin Ruane and Florida State Rep. Jenna Persons-Mulicka.
The group of volunteers and first responders who are planning the event want to allow the community to “remember our heroes – the ones who served, the ones who are still serving and the ones who paid the ultimate price,” said Chief Tracy McMillion of the Fort Myers Fire Department who also serves as vice chairman of the Lee County Fire Chiefs’ Association.
For additional event information, contact the City of Fort Myers Fire Department at 239-321-7311 or Iona McGregor Fire District’s Megan Contreras, public information officer, at 239-689-9046 or firstname.lastname@example.org
To commemorate the 20th Anniversary of 9/11, the Cape Coral Fire Department along with the City of Cape Coral and Cape Coral Police Department will be hosting a remembrance ceremony on Saturday, September 11 on the front lawn outside ofCity Hall Council Chambers, 1015 Cultural Park Blvd., beginning at 8:30 am.
The ceremony will include the presentation of colors by the Cape Coral Fire and Police Honor Guards, a moment of silence, an invocation, and remarks from Mayor John Gunter, Police Chief Tony Sizemore, and Fire Chief Ryan Lamb.
The ceremony will end with attendees staking 2,977 American flags, each with a name of a victim of the attacks, in the front lawn of City Hall to honor their memory and reaffirming that “We Will Never Forget.”
“We invite the community to join us as we commemorate the events from 20 years ago and remember those we lost and honor those who with dignity and courage made the ultimate sacrifice to help others,” said Fire Chief Ryan Lamb.
The ceremony is free and open to the public. CDC guidelines will be followed. The ceremony will also be broadcast on CapeTV and Facebook Live on the Cape Coral Fire Department page (@CapeCoralFD).
Facebook Live events planned each Friday during the month, donations needed
Clips for Cancer kicks off Sept. 1 to raise the funds necessary to ensure that programs and services are available for the increasing number of local children diagnosed with cancer at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida.
Throughout September, which is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, local community leaders will allow pediatric cancer survivors to shave their heads for awareness of the effects of cancer treatment, which often include hair loss.
Each Friday in September, shaves will be hosted on Facebook Live from Great Clips salons to benefit Barbara’s Friends – Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida’s cancer program. Since Clips for Cancer was started in 2018, the event has grown from a one-day event with a few participants to a monthlong celebration of childhood cancer patients and survivors by the community.
Fifteen pediatric cancer and blood diseases survivors are expected to shave volunteers during the month, including children, teenagers, and young adults from the following communities:
Fort Myers: Ashton Hoiles, 12; Mallory Rice, 18; and Mackenzie Hummer, 22.
Naples: Emma Lockhart, 12; and Sarah McKeown, 18.
Golden Gate: Sara Jean, 17.
LaBelle: Bradon Gutierrez, 10.
Lehigh Acres: McKynsie Jones, 10.
Collectively, these survivors endured nearly 30 years of treatment.
The volunteers to be shaved include Michael Nachef, vice president of government relations at Lee Health; John Lai, president of the Sanibel Captiva Chamber of Commerce; Fort Myers philanthropist Marc Collins; Fort Myers Mayor Kevin Anderson; Sanibel Police Chief Bill Dalton; representatives of the Collier County Sheriff’s Department, Lee County Sheriff’s Department and Fort Myers Police Department; Frank Haskell, the 92-year-old founder of Barbara’s Friends; Barbara’s Friends board Chairman Al Kinkle; Janet Washburn, fire marshal in Bonita Springs; and Elise Snyder, a 16-year Lee Health employee who also shaved her head at the very first Clips for Cancer.
On Sept. 10, first responders from the Lehigh Acres, San Carlos Park, South Trail, Iona McGregor, Bonita Springs, Estero and Port Authority fire departments, as well as Lee County EMS, will be shaved.
Several special shavings are also scheduled. On Sept. 8, FOX4 anchor Patrick Nolan will have his head shaved. On Sept. 19, Cal Bruno of Bruno of Brooklyn’s Restaurant will join with others for shaving during the restaurant’s 7th anniversary outdoor block party celebration in downtown Fort Myers.
To celebrate the end of the Clips for Cancer campaign, on Sept. 30, Hummer will shave the head and beard of Amando Llechu, chief officer of hospital operations and women and children’s services at Lee Health.
Llechu was inspired to create the event after he met Hummer, who was first diagnosed with a brain tumor at age 8. He said he knew the community needed an event that would show solidarity and support for children with cancer.
Llechu is hoping to raise $50,000 for shaving his head and $50,000 for shaving his beard.
Also shaving that day is Dr. Emad Salman, a pediatric oncologist for nearly 25 years, who has provided care for many of the survivors.
Clips for Cancer would not be possible without the support of Presenting Sponsor Florida Radiology Consultants, Location Sponsor Great Clips and the support of The John E & Aliese Price Foundation and Dorcey Law Firm.
Thanks to events like Clips for Cancer and the generous Southwest Florida community, Barbara’s Friends has a 26-year history of helping kids with cancer and life-threatening blood disorders. To date, Barbara’s Friends has cared for more than 10,000 local children. The program provides access to resources for families including medications, therapies, transportation, gas cards for families to get to and from treatment, meals for parents when a child is staying overnight, and more.
Clips for Cancer has raised close to $300,000 in the past three years to assist families during their child’s cancer journey.
Clips for Cancer is important because:
100 children have been diagnosed with cancer since the start of the pandemic. More than half of Golisano Children’s Hospital’s patients are underinsured, on Medicaid or have no insurance – yet no child is denied treatment.
The children’s hospital is one of only nine centers in Florida to offer complete pediatric cancer care.
As a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, Golisano Children’s Hospital brings world-class cancer care close to home, offering the same treatments as other centers of excellence.
The survival rate for pediatric cancer at the children’s hospital is 84% – higher than the national average.
Golisano Children’s Hospital has more than 90 children in current treatment and more than 200 children receiving continued and follow-up care.