Oh, the excitement! It’s just two weeks until the 2013 version of what has been a beloved Sanibel musical tradition for 25 years – the Sanibel Music Festival.
The first performance in the 26th annual Sanibel Music Festival takes place on Saturday March 2 at the Sanibel Congregational Church. Trio Cavatina, formed by three talented women musicians – Violinist Harumi Rhodes, Cellist Priscilla Lee and pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute – will perform Beethoven’s Piano Trio Op. 1 No. 1 in E-Flat Major, Faure’s Piano Trio in D-Minor Op. 120 and Ravel’s Piano Trio in A-minor. The performance will begin at 8:00pm.
We look forward to this and the remainder of the season’s schedule. As many of our annual guests at the West Wind Inn say, “Save March for Music.” How about you?
In March at West Wind Inn you can play catch on the beach, in the commons grass, or – go watch the pros play catch during Spring Training!
Again this year, the Boston Red Sox will be training at JetBlue Park and the Minnesota Twins will train at Hammond Stadium, both in Fort Myers and an easy drive from Sanibel Island. Click the links to see the full Spring Training schedules.
Most baseball fans want to stay close to the ballparks but they don’t consider what the West Wind Inn on the beach on Sanibel has to add to their trip. Sure, it’s a bit further to drive – and what a beautiful drive it is – but when you are here you have access to the quietest beach and the friendliest pool deck baron on the Island. And the fishing is great! Everything you want a vacation to be. Relaxation and fun.
Before you book anywhere else, check with us for vacancies. It’s the best of both worlds – beach balls and baseball.
Ever heard of a Nudibranch?
It’s probably not what you think…It’s a seashell, without a shell. Actually, Nudibranches are shell-less mollusks.
Joyce Matthys will present a lecture about these extraordinary creatures at the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum on February 8, 2013 as part of the “Friday Lunch Hour at the Museum” series. Matthys is a founding volunteer at the museum, and is responsible for two video documentaries that visitors to the museum see each day.
For more information, please visit www.shellmuseum.org or call Diane Thomas at (239) 395-2233. Contact West Wind Inn for a booking to be on Sanibel this weekend. Then before and after the informative lecture, head to the beach and find your own seashells – after the live tenants have vacated, please. Live shelling on Sanibel is illegal.
According to Peter Greenberg, a writer known for his expertise in travel to nature attractions, Sanibel’s “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge is a top place to bird-watch.
The refuge’s 6,400 acres of salt marshes and mangrove forests host more than 220 species of migrating and resident birds. As a result, bird-watchers are regular visitors to the refuge. Since West Wind Inn is the closest beach resort to the refuge, we see hundreds of guests who stay with us specifically to easily get to Ding Darling NWR.
Of course, they also come here to enjoy the fabulous Sanibel shelling beach on the quiet end of the island. And let’s not forget the happy hospitality of a large heated pool, an adjacent pool deck with a congenial snack and beverage bar, tennis courts, shuffleboard and, for those hearty Normandie Beachside Pub breakfasts to start days of dedicated bird-watching.
After two years of fund-raising struggle, the annual 4th of July fireworks display on Sanibel Island will be manged by the Chamber of Commerce. God bless them and the Presenting Sponsor this year – John & Jay at John R Wood Realtors.
This year’s display will be at dusk Wednesday Night, July 4th, 2012. Usually, the display is launched over water from the foot of Bailey Road. As a result, hundreds of cars will park on the Causeway Islands to view. Another option is to watch from boats. But, there is a safety zone patrolled by the authorities to assure compliance.
There also is an island 4th of July parade. Since everyone in the parade and along the route (Periwinkle Way) knows each other, it’s home town affair. Watch for water pistols coming from the parade and the audience. You have been warned.
We can’t think of anything that is more TRUE SANIBEL than this. Book now at the the West Wind Inn to assure you have a room.
They have been busy at “Ding” Darling, tracking Mangrove Cuckoo. This bird is difficult to spot because it stays in the mangroves and getting in there to to spot one usually requires a boat and some special skills.
As part of a special wildlife grant, researchers have ben hanging out in the Refuge, hoping to spot one. Well, they more than succeeded. By playing a recording of the Cuckoo’s call, they were able to coax one to show on a mangrove branch. Then, moving deeper into the mangrove forest they were able to get two to present. This was unprecedented in the experience of the researchers.
One of those birds was captured and fitted with a leg band and a miniature radio transmitter, These will be used to track the bird to see where it goes and whether or not it leaves the immediate habitat.
As most birders know, using bird calls to attract birds is not allowed in “Ding” Darling NWR, without a special permit. As most birders also know, even without the assistance of bird calls, the refuge is a fertile area for watching and photographing birds of many species. We have many guests who stay at West Wind Inn specifically because our proximity to Ding Darling makes it convenient to bird-watch there.
Of course, they also love the beach (who doesn’t), which swarms with seabirds, and the heated pool, which attracts fellow birders to relax at poolside and at the pool-deck snack and beverage bar. This is TRUE SANIBEL.
We truly love having them here, too.
One of the great events in our area is the Calusa Blueway Paddling Festival . This year’s event is in November, from the 1st to the 4th.
It will offer on-water instruction, demonstrations, seminars, races, social events for participants and a film festival.
The Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail extends for 190 miles along west coast of SouthwestFlorida. It includes saltwater mangrove trails and inland rivers that access the saltwater trails. The event was selected as a Top Event by the Southeast Tourism Society for two years in a row.
You can access the Blueway from “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge and TarponBay. Since West Wind Inn is the nearest resort to “Ding” Darling, it makes sense for any kayakers, canoers and other paddlers to book into a West Wind Inn room or suite during November 1-4, 2012. Join us.
With Easter Sunday just hours away, it occurs to us that some of our guests and others who read this blog may be looking for a church on Sanibel Island to celebrate the event. Here’s a list, including phone numbers and website addresses (where available) for reference.
Saint Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church
2304 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel, FL 33957
Happy Easter from West Wind Inn True Sanibel
Sanibelians are justifiably proud that Arthur Frommer called their island his #1 favorite place to vacation. Add to that the pride of being the location of a nationally recognized Blue Ribbon public school. Now comes news that the Sanibel Public Library has been recognized by the Library Journal as a 5-star Library. It’s part of the magazine’s America’s Star Libraries of 2011.
The recognition is based on stellar service and the importance of the library to the community. Technological innovation also is factored in. That’s where the Sanibel Public Library’s work in developing, upgrading and offering wireless internet access, access to library resources online and allowing the downloading of e-books and audio books.
If you need an internet connection, an ebook or a librarian’s help researching a book, stop by the Sanibel Public Library, 770 Dunlop Road. Call 239-472-2483 for hours and information.
West Wind Inn on Sanibel is the nearest Sanibel beach resort to J.N “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, which Arthur Frommer indicated was a major rason for him naming Sanibel Island as his #! vacation destination in the world.
That puts you, as a TRUE SANIBEL guest of West Wind Inn, as close as you can get for this year’s Earth Day Celebration at Ding Darling on Saturday, April 21, 2012.
It celebrates Earth Day’s 42nd anniversary and it is being staged in partnership with “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge and Tarpon Bay Explorers.
There will be a range of activities for all ages, from how to “plarn,” making yarn out of those pesky plastic bags to a guest appearance of “Bagzilla,” the disposable bag-costumed character. Plarn is yarn made from plastic bags, which can then be woven into your own sturdier reusable shopping bags.
Here’s a schedule of activities:
7 a.m. – 4 p.m. Wildlife Drive is open free to bikers and hikers
8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Free bike rentals from Tarpon Bay Explorers’ site (returns by 6 p.m.)
10 a.m. – The first 200 visitors to the Refuge will receive a FREE reusable shopping bag, courtesy of Ding Darling Wildlife Socierty.
10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Ongoing Earth Crafts in the Education Center Education Lab
• Make your own “Mother Earth” ornament
• Create a pop-bottle butterfly or jellyfish
• Learn from a pollinator and mind your own beeswax (candle that is)
• Create your own bracelet out of “plarn” (plastic bag yarn)
• Meet and greet refuge educator Bagzilla, costumed in a year’s worth of an average person’s disposable bag consumption
10-11 a.m. Guided Native Plant walk along Indigo Trail
11:30 a.m.-noon “Let’s Talk Trash” Marine Timeline Competition for Kids- How long does it take that trash to biodegrade in a marine environment? (Education Center Auditorium)
Lunch on your own
1:30-2 p.m. Climate Change 101 – Learn the basics of climate change and what you can do to help. (Education Center Auditorium)
2:30-3 p.m. Make Your Own Plarn- Plastic bag overload? Learn how to make “plarn” (plastic-bag yarn) and weave reusable shopping bags that are 10 times stronger than other plastic bags. (Education Center Auditorium)
For more information on Earth Day at the Refuge, call 239-472-1100 or visit the Ding Darling NWR online.
Will we see you there?