Category Archives: Entertainment

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Get Involved: Top Nonprofits in Bonita Springs & Naples

One of the best parts about living in Bonita Springs and Naples is that there are a number of things to do — whether you want to relax by the beach, play a round of golf, go shopping or eat out at any of the excellent restaurants in the area, the list is endless. However, when you live a vacation lifestyle, you may develop a desire to do more than just relax. Finding activities in which you can help others can be gratifying and rewarding. This idea is supported by Stephanie Watson, who writes for Harvard Health Publications. She explains that volunteering your time can reward you with both physical and mental health benefits — meaning that individuals who volunteer can experience lower blood pressure and a longer lifespan while thwarting loneliness and depression. It also just feels good to give back!

Here are some options to get involved — the names of each nonprofit link to their volunteer page:

Help People

Literacy Council Gulf Coast

Bonita Springs, FL

If you’d rather not work with animals, the Literacy Council Gulf Coast is a great option to help adults and children improve their literacy. This nonprofit focuses on helping individuals in the immediate area, and you can volunteer your time by sharing stories, tutoring, or helping out with various other activities for the Council.

Cafe of Life

Bonita Springs, FL

Help out the less fortunate with the Cafe of Life, a nonprofit that focuses on assisting and meeting the needs of people in the community with nutritional and supplemental support. You can volunteer to be a cook or server or you can help deliver/pick up groceries. There are also options to help with administrative support. “Care, Share, and Serve” your fellow man!

Bonita Community Health Center

Bonita Springs, FL

The Bonita Springs Community Health Center is a nonprofit that offers a variety of healthcare services to people in the community. They rely on the help from volunteers to keep day to day operations running and to provide health care services. They try to match volunteers with their greatest interest. Contact them directly for more information on how you can help.

Centers for the Arts

Bonita Springs

The Centers for the Arts in Bonita Springs is an excellent nonprofit organization for you to volunteer your time — no special skills needed! Get immersed in the performing and visual arts environment by helping The Centers for the Arts, a nonprofit that seeks to enrich the lives of people in the community through art education, expression and appreciation. You can participate in special events, greet visitors, serve on committees, answer phones and assist with community outreach programs. Additionally, Centers for the Arts also has opportunities to volunteer that don’t require you to be gregarious and outspoken. You can help out the Centers by making copies, filing and entering data, or completing research.

Join a Cause

Habitat for Humanity – ReStore

Ft. Myers, FL

If you have time to volunteer, Habitat for Humanity ReStore offers a multitude of opportunities for people with a variety of skills. From their website, volunteer opportunities include: Driver Helper, Donation Processing, Handyman, Facilities Maintenance, Dispatcher, Social Media, and Volunteer Coordinator. Contact Habitat for Humanity to learn more and to find out how you can contribute.


Bonita Springs, FL

Become an advocate for breast cancer awareness and volunteer with the Susan G. Komen Southwest Florida organization. You can volunteer to help out in the office, health care fairs, and help with marketing or as an organizer. You can also participate in or help out the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.

Make-a-Wish Foundation Southern Florida

Bonita Springs, FL

The Make-a-Wish Foundation is responsible for orchestrating and making the dreams of children with life-threatening medical conditions come true. Be a part of something special and participate as an airport greeter, office volunteer, speaker, special events volunteer, or wish granter!

Help Animals

Humane Society – Naples

Naples, FL

If you love dogs and/or cats, you can make a difference in their lives by volunteering at the Humane Society in Naples. You can donate your time and help care for the animals who are being housed and cared for at the shelter by helping with daily operations, education and outreach (shelter tours and social enrichment opportunities), or acting as a canine coach or female ambassador (handling animals in the kennels, at events, and at the mall location).  You can also foster dogs or work special events and assist with the mobile adoption bus. There’s plenty of things to do within the shelter and outside that can benefit the animals in its care.

Naples Equestrian Challenge

Naples, FL

Naples Equestrian Challenge is a nonprofit organization that offers therapeutic horseback riding to adults and children with disabilities of Collier County. You don’t have to be a seasoned equestrian to volunteer your time, but if you have a love of horses, this is the place to be! If you don’t, all you need is a desire to be compassionate and give reliable support. The volunteer opportunities include side walking, leading, grooming, tacking, participation in fundraising activities, serving on the board or committee, and more. Volunteers do go through a training session prior to helping out.

Bird Gardens of Naples

Naples, FL

If large animals aren’t your thing, you can always work with the stunningly beautiful tropical parrots who live at the Bird Gardens sanctuary. This nonprofit focuses on caring for parrots in captivity, which come to the sanctuary from occasions of neglect, abuse, or abandonment. The Bird Gardens provides a beautiful home for the intelligent parrots and further gives back to the community by giving educational tours to the community. There are a multitude of volunteer options — when you visit the web page, scroll all the way to the bottom to reach out and express your desire to help.

Volunteer Today!

Volunteering at a local nonprofit is a fantastic way to help out the community and feel good about yourself. The above is a list of some of the nearby nonprofit organizations. If you have a desire to help, there’s someone out there who needs you. So, get out there and do some good!

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Season’s Winding Down: Summer Events for Full-Time Colony Residents

Just because season is winding down doesn’t mean that you have to. There are plenty of wonderful summer events available to full-time residents of The Colony. If you’re looking for something to do this summer, look no further.

Travel Club

Are you interested in seeing all the sights that Switzerland has to offer? The Travel Club will be taking a spectacular trip this summer to see Scenic Switzerland by Train from July 31 – August 8. This memorable 9 day trip, includes visits to Zermatt, Lucerne, Montreaux, Zurich, and St. Moritz. For more information, email

Canoeing & Kayaking

Both new and experienced paddlers in The Colony are always able to enjoy the natural beauty of Southwest Florida from a kayak or canoe at the Colony Kayak & Canoe Park. Don’t miss the last sunset/moonrise paddle of the season on May 4. You can sign up for the long paddle at 6:45 p.m. or the short paddle at 7:30 p.m.

Butterfly Garden

If you are interested in gardening or enjoy butterflies, then join the weekly garden gathering at the Butterfly Garden every Wednesday from 8:30 – 10:30 a.m. This gardening group is always in need of volunteers to maintain the garden and keep the ecosystem healthy. Every Wednesday you can meet others who share your passion and use your knowledge and experience to help the garden thrive.

Sports Club

If you are looking to stay active this summer, there are plenty of opportunities to get together with friends for a game of golf or a tennis match at The Colony. There are multiple sports events offered by the club throughout the summer, which offer you the opportunity to meet others and keep your game sharp. Not a golfer or a tennis player? If you like cycling, the Cycling club meets every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday morning for a fun and refreshing group ride.

Other Colony Activities

Here are some other fun activities taking place this summer:

  • Mosaics Class: If you’ve been looking for a way to exercise your creativity, sign up for the Stained Glass Mosaics Class on May 7 from 1 to 3 p.m. If you have never worked with glass before, have no fear. The instructor will guide you through each step of the process.
  • Lunch Brunch: Who doesn’t love great food at a waterfront restaurant? On May 20, a group will be leaving at 11:30 a.m. for a fun lunch brunch at Coconut Jack’s.
  • Mah Jongg: If you like to play Mah Jongg (at the intermediate level), join the group on Mondays and Thursdays at 1 p.m. for a fun game with friends.

Find Your Place at The Colony Golf & Bay Club

Want to get in on the fun? There is always something exciting going on at The Colony Golf & Bay Club. Both in and out of season, this community offers a variety of activities for its residents. If you want to live in a vibrant community like The Colony, contact Jill Kushner to see what you’ve been missing!

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4 Helpful Tips for New Kayakers & Canoers

Are you new to kayaking or canoeing? Participating in these water activities can be a great way to stay active while also enjoying the beautiful Florida scenery. If you live in The Colony, you do not have to go very far to enjoy these fun Florida activities. Along with 34 acres of white sand beaches, The Colony Bay Beach Park also offers a Back Water Bay Canoe Park. If you have been wanting to try canoeing or kayaking, but haven’t gotten the chance to get out on the water yet, have no fear!

If you’re a new kayaker or canoer, you may not know where to start. Use these tips to help you get started and enjoy some fun in the sun:

Go Canoeing and Kayaking With Friends

The best way to learn how to kayak or canoe is to practice, and practice is much more fun when you can enjoy the activity in the company of others. Bring your spouse or find a friend who is also interested in learning how to kayak or canoe. If you have friends who are experienced, ask them to show you the ropes. If not, learn together!

Join (or Create) a Community Canoe or Kayak Group

One of the best ways to stay motivated and continue to spend time on the water is to find a local kayak or canoe group. Here, you can meet others who enjoy these activities, including experienced paddlers who can give you some pointers. At The Colony in Pelican Landing, we have a number of residents that enjoy the occasional kayak/canoe season. Find others in the community who enjoy these activities and make kayaking or canoeing a weekly or monthly event.

Take a Canoe or Kayak Paddling Lesson

If you’re new to canoeing or kayaking, your first paddle might be a little daunting. The Colony Kayak & Canoe Park offers a first time paddle training session for those who have not yet been out on the water. During this training session, you can learn the basics of paddling and build your confidence so that you’re ready to get paddling.

Enjoy a Guided Canoe or Kayak Session

Southwest Florida offers many opportunities for guided canoe or kayak tours. These tours are led by seasoned paddlers who can teach you the basics while showing you the natural beauty of Florida. If you live at The Colony, you don’t have to go far for a guided paddle experience. These sunset/moonrise paddles are regularly scheduled throughout the season, but as the season comes to a close, the last paddle will take place on May 4, with a long paddle at 6:45 p.m. and a short paddle at 7:30 p.m.

Are You Ready to Enjoy the Best Kayaking in The Colony?

Imagine having these activities right in your own backyard. The Colony Bay & Golf Club offers this and more as part of its offering of luxury amenities. To find out more about how you can enjoy the best that Bonita Springs has to offer, contact Jill Kushner today!

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January 2015 Pelican Landing Events: Part 2

Pelican Landing Bonita Springs, FL Community Events

Stay informed and up-to-date in your local community with the Pelican Landing Community Calendar. Participating in community events will help residents form lasting relationships with community members, staff, and residents. Meet your neighbors today by attending one of the following events:

Canoe/Kayak Equipment – Reminder

Throughout the season, you’ll need to go to the Community Center to receive the paddles, PFDs and to sign the waiver. If you’re kayaking from the Marina, please continue to go to the Marina for all your necessary equipment and waivers – equipment for the Marina will not be given out at the Community Center.

Pelican Landing Intermediate Bridge Classes

Pelican Landing in Bonita Springs offers intermediate bridge classes, which will run Thursdays from January 8th to February 26th at 2:00-4:30 PM. The intermediate bridge class will cover the following topics: Preemptive Opening Bids; Overcalls and Answering Overcalls; Takeout Doubles and Answering Takeout Doubles; and A Competitive Auction (when both pairs are bidding). The course is $250.00 plus book cost ($12.00), if you don’t already own one. Please make checks payable to Mary Ann Geppert. Deadline is January 2nd.

Pelican Landing Casual Friday Sail

Pelican Landing Bonita Springs will start their “Casual Friday Sail” beginning January 9th with Dave Gilmore and Geoff Withrington. Times will be posted on the calendar on the Sailing Center Webpage. Also, beginning that week on January 10th will be the “Saturday Sail to The Island”. Pelican Landing staff is looking for experienced sailors who would like to said to the Island and share a ride with the non-sailing residents (weather and conditions permitting). Please contact Anthony Gatto at

Pelican Landing Tennis-Pickle ball Social

Pelican Landing Bonita Springs will be hosting a Tennis-Pickle Ball Social Saturday, January 10th at Noon. Players will play a minimum of two 30-minute rounds with a playoff for the top players. Play is limited to the first 48 players who register. Pairing will be made prior to the event by the event coordinators. The final match will be an exhibition by our Tennis Staff against two Pickle Ball players. Immediately after the exhibition, there will be an awards ceremony and a social time in the community patio area. Lunch will be catered by Panera Bread and will be available before or between matches. Play and lunch is $17.50. If you don’t want to play, join us for lunch and cheer on your favorite players. Lunch only is $10.00 per person. The proceeds from this event will support the Tennis Center’s 20th anniversary celebrations including a community dinner-dance, which will be held at Pelican’s Nest on March 3rd.

Pelican Landing Cocktails & Canvas

Pelican Landing Bonita Springs will be offering Cocktail & Canvas Classes during the months of January, February and March. Pelican Landing resident Renata Vigoda will be teaching two classes. The first two are Tuesday, January 13th or January 20th at 1:00-4:00 PM. In these workshops, you will complete a painting in just one session then go home with you own creation. Renata will guide you each step of the way, and you’ll learn all about painting in the process. Snacks and special cocktails will be featured at each session to keep your creative juices flowing! All materials will be provided to you upon arrival – canvas, paint, brushes aprons, and inspiration. These are duplicate classes with the same image being painted at each one – this is being done to allow more people to attend the class. Cost is $30.00. Deadline to signup is January 3rd or January 10th.

Pelican Landing Intermediate Mah Jongg

Pelican Landing Bonita Springs is offering intermediate Mah Jongg classes. The classes are Thursdays, January 15th – February 5th at 10:00 AM – Noon. The cost is $60.00 for four two-hour classes. Learn strategy, how to change hands, and how to prevent your opponents from making Mah Jongg. It’s also the perfect class for brushing up on your game, if you haven’t played in awhile. Please make checks payable to Doris Loigman. Deadline to sign-up is January 8th.

Pelican Landing Travel Club Meeting: Backstage at RSW

On January 21st at 9:00 AM – 12:00 Noon you can choose to visit the new Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Station at Southwest Florida International Airport to get a comprehensive look at how the Lee County Port Authority operates Southwest Florida International Airport and Page Field. The morning begins sharply at 9:30 AM and ends at noon. We can accommodate 30 Pelican Landing residents (residents only) on a first-come basis. Reservation forms are available in the travel slot at the Pelican Landing Community Center. Details for an optional lunch is following (at a Gulf Coast Town Center Restaurant – order off menu, pay onsite) will be forthcoming to those who reserve. The Deadline to reserve is January 13, 2015. Fill out the reservation form today!

Pelican Landing Trump for the Cure

Save the date – Friday, January 30th. Second annual bridge tournament benefitting your own Pink Pelicans Race for the Cure Susan G. Komen team. Delightful day of bridge with lunch at the PLCA. Registration info available in early January, so mark your calendars now!

Pelican Landing Butterfly Garden

The Butterfly Garden at Pelican Landing hosts weekly Garden Gatherings at 8:30 – 10:30 AM every Wednesday. Everyone is welcome to attend – visit the Butterfly Garden Website today!

Pelican Landing Knitting

Pelican Landing has a knitting class every Wednesday at 10:00 AM now through April. If interested in attending contact Beth Baxter (239) 495-9315 with any questions.

Pelican Landing Singles

Pelican Landing Singles welcomes new members. For more information, email Or see them on Facebook: PLSingles.

Attending a Pelican Landing Community Event?

If you choose to attend any of the events listed above, we’d love to hear your feedback – sharing your experience will enable current and future residents to actively participate!