Matanzas on the Bay on Fort Myers Beach will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Easter Sunday, and two featured plates will be served from 2 p.m. until close.
A fresh Gulf Tilefish with Lemon Lobster butter, served with roasted local vegetables and house rice, is available for $27. A 12 oz. Choice Angus Prime Rib, served with horseradish cream, a sea salt baked potato and locally grown tomatoes dressed with a balsamic reduction, is available for $25.
Matanzas on the Bay works with Oakes Farm’s Seed to Table program to incorporate locally grown produce into many of its dishes. A recently updated menu introduced new fish, pizza and pasta options and increased the amount of fresh local produce and seafood used in dishes.
Free car parking and boat dockage is available for both Matanzas on the Bay and Petey’s Upper Deck. Both restaurants are located at 416 Crescent St. on Fort Myers Beach.
Matanzas on the Bay offers waterfront dining in a tropical setting on Estero Bay on Fort Myers Beach. Serving fresh seafood, steak and a full bar, the restaurant serves lunch and dinner daily, as well as caters to special occasions and private parties. The restaurant is located adjacent to the Matanzas Inn Resort waterfront accommodations, just steps away from the Fort Myers Beach entertainment district. To book your party or for more information, call 239-463-3838 or visit www.matanzas.com.
Pure Barre Fort Myers, the third Southwest Florida location for Pure Barre, is now open at 7381 College Parkway, Suite 100. Pure Barre is a total-body workout that utilizes the ballet barre to perform small, isometric movements, which burn fat, sculpt muscles and create long, lean physiques. Co-owners Jennifer Hissam, Olga Metzler and Lenka Valigurska recently opened the new location and are offering a new client special for $99 for one month of unlimited classes.
“We’ve had amazing success with our first two locations in Naples and Estero, and we’re thrilled to bring the most effective and accessible workout available to Fort Myers,” said Valigurska. “The ballet barre workout has definitely found a foothold in Southwest Florida because we offer not just a place to get fit, but a lifestyle and a community of support.”
Classes at Pure Bare Fort Myers are 55 minutes long and are offered Mondays through Thursdays from 6 am to 7:35 p.m.; Fridays from 6 a.m. to 5:10 p.m.; and Saturdays and Sundays at 8, 9:10 and 10:20 a.m. In addition to studio space, Pure Barre offers a retail boutique featuring exercise equipment, DVDs, apparel and accessories. In addition to the new Fort Myers location, Pure Barre has locations in Naples at 1410 Pine Ridge Rd., Suite 10, and in Estero at 21740 South Tamiami Trail, Suite 113.
Pure Barre is the largest, most established barre franchise in the nation, with more than 250 studios across the country, and more opening every month. Pure Barre is a total body workout that utilizes the ballet barre to perform small, isometric movements, which burn fat, sculpt muscles and create long, lean physiques. Pure Barre was founded by dancer, choreographer and fitness guru Carrie Rezabek Dorr. In addition to classes, Pure Barre also offers DVDs, equipment and exercise apparel. For more information, visit www.purebarre.com/fl-fortmyers/, “like” Pure Barre on Facebook, email email@example.com or call 239-240-7777.
Gulf Coast Village is partnering with Cape Coral Hospital and Lee Memorial Health System to host local high school students participating in Junior Leadership Cape Coral’s Healthcare Day. On Thursday, March 26, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., students will visit both Cape Coral Hospital and Gulf Coast Village to learn about health care leadership and operations.
Cape Coral Hospital Chief Administrative Officer Scott Kashman and Gulf Coast Village Executive Director Kevin Ahmadi will lead the students on tours of their respective facilities. In addition, students will have an opportunity to participate in fitness classes, educational health programs and more. A program of the Cape Coral Chamber of Commerce, Junior Leadership Cape Coral is an educational and interactive program for local high school juniors. In addition to helping students develop leadership skills, the program exposes students to career possibilities and examines local community issues. Students participate in nine sessions filled with educational forums, specialized tours and programs led by local business leaders.
“As one of the region’s largest employers, Gulf Coast Village is honored to host the students and to educate them on the opportunities that exist in the local healthcare industry,” said Ahmadi. “In addition to exposure about the quality of care and services we offer at Gulf Coast Village, I believe the students will be surprised to learn more about the fun activities that we offer our residents. In fact, we’re going to invite the kids to join some of our residents in a fitness class, if they are up to the challenge!”
To learn more about Cape Coral Chamber Commerce’s Junior Leadership program, visit http://www.capecoralchamber.com/jr-leadership.html or contact Melanie Lempke at 239-549-6900 x102.
Founded more than 25 years ago, Gulf Coast Village is the premier Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) in Cape Coral, Florida. Residents enjoy active independent living in an unparalleled lifestyle of comfort and convenience with a rich array of services and amenities that are focused on living well. The community also offers the security of knowing there is the full continuum of care when needed including: assisted living, skilled nursing, specialized memory support, home health and outpatient services. Gulf Coast Village is located at 1333 Santa Barbara Blvd., Cape Coral, FL 33991. For more information call 239-772-1333 or visit www.GulfCoastVillage.com.
Gulf Coast Village is sponsored by Volunteers of America, a national non-profit faith-based organization dedicated to helping those in need rebuild their lives and reach their full potential. Founded in 1896, Volunteers of America is one of the nation’s largest nonprofit providers of quality, affordable housing for seniors and a major provider of professional long-term care, including assisted living, home health care and nursing home care. Their work touches the mind, body, heart – and ultimately the spirit – of those they serve, integrating a deep compassion with highly effective programs and services.
Design West, a full-service upscale interior design company has been honored with the “Best Of Houzz 2015” award for achieving the highest level of client satisfaction. Houzz selected Design West based on results of an annual survey and analysis of more than 25 million monthly Houzz users.
Houzz (www.houzz.com) is the leading online platform for home remodeling and design, connecting people with the best home professionals for their project by providing a comprehensive overview of their work, from their portfolio, client reviews, awards and accreditations to their work style and expertise based on their participation in the Houzz community.
The Houzz profile page for Design West provides visitors to the site with an overview of the company’s comprehensive design services, including interior design, custom renovations, architectural detailing, model merchandising, custom cabinetry and premium home cinema solutions. The Houzz site showcases completed projects with an array of photos and descriptions and includes reviews from visitors and clients. Visitors to the Design West Houzz profile page can post questions about projects and services, and members of the Design West team post responses.
“We are honored to be recognized by the Houzz community for our dedication to client satisfaction,” said Glenn Midnet, president of Design West. “Houzz has proven to be a great platform for us to showcase our projects, interact with people interested in interior design and share our expertise. It’s a great site for homeowners as well as industry professionals looking to gather ideas and find resources for design and renovation projects.”
The Best of Houzz award is given in two categories: Customer Service and Design. Customer Service honors are determined by a variety of factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2014. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 25 million monthly users on Houzz, known as “Houzzers,” Winners will receive a “Best of Houzz 2015” badge on their profiles, demonstrating their commitment to excellence to the Houzz community. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.
Design West is a full-service upscale interior design company based in Southwest Florida that specializes in interior design for private residences and club houses, architectural detailing, model home merchandising and comprehensive custom home renovations including custom cabinetry, partnering with quality home furnishing brands such as Ralph Lauren Home, Bang & Olufsen and Wood-Mode. Company president Glenn Midnet, who has more than 25 years of experience in the interior design industry, founded the award-winning design firm, which serves clients throughout the U.S. and internationally. The firm’s showroom is located at 9118 Strada Place, Mercato 8130 in Naples, Florida. For information, call 239-514-1234, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.DesignWestFL.com.
Bougainvillea Growers International (BGI), a Southwest Florida-based manufacturer and distributor of fertilizers, plant foods and plant food supplements, introduces SuperGain, a new-to-market natural and organic-based plant food supplement designed for all types of vegetation, including ornamental plants, interior plants, turf, trees, vegetables, fruits and citrus. BGI was founded in 1994 as a five-acre bougainvillea nursery in Boynton Beach, Florida that grew to more than 67 acres. After growing more than 30 varieties of bougainvillea, BGI expanded to St. James City in 2006. In 2012, BGI embarked on a new venture to focus on producing and distributing GAIN fertilizers and products, which include species-specific varieties such as BouGain, HibisGain and PalmGain. BGI’s GAIN fertilizers are sold online, in Home Depot stores and at home and garden centers throughout the U.S.
SuperGain is an organic-based, premium plant performance activator that contains more than 400 natural, beneficial plant-based supplements designed to activate specific physiological capabilities in both indoor and outdoor plants such as root development, flowering and drought resistance. The use of SuperGain on agronomic crops has been shown to lead to double-digit percentage yield increases. SuperGain is food-quality formulated and safe to use on vegetables and fruits, and it is available in 4 oz. and 8 oz. bottles that can be applied in a foliar spray or soil drench mix. SuperGain is now available at Home Depot stores, local home and garden centers and online at www.BGI-USA.com and Amazon.com. Prices for SuperGain start at less than $10 for a 4 oz. bottle.
“With SuperGain, we’ve developed an easy-to-use and inexpensive plant food supplement that acts on plants at the genetic level to improve their root development, chlorophyll production, drought and salt tolerance, and most importantly, yield and appearance,” said Tom Scannell, owner and founder of BGI. “We’ve used the combination of multiple patented products, deep international research and decades of growing experience to design a product that can safely and effectively help you grow bigger, lusher, higher-yielding plants.”
Scannell, who holds a degree in soil science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, began his career growing cotton and rice in the Mississippi Delta before moving to Florida, where he became a master bougainvillea grower in the southeastern U.S.
“As we worked to cultivate beautiful, lush bougainvillea, BGI developed a fertilizer specifically designed to tackle the unique nutritional and environmental challenges posed by bougainvillea cultivation,” said Scannell. “Our first fertilizer product, BouGain, was an instant success with bougainvillea growers.”
BGI offers the highest quality products to landscape professionals, including architects, designers and contractors. BGI products are used at Busch Gardens, Disney World and the Edison and Ford Winter Estates. BGI is headquartered at 7401 Stringfellow Rd. in St. James City, Florida, and the BGI manufacturing facility is located at 1221 S.E. 9th Terrace in Cape Coral, Florida. For more information on BGI, visit www.BGI-USA.com or call 561-374-9216.
Tickets still available for auction gala April 25 at The Club at Grandezza
Dr. Sandra K. Kauanui of the Lutgert College of Business at Florida Gulf Coast University will be presented with the first-ever “Breaking Par Award” from Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida (JASWFL) at the third annual “Breaking Par for Junior Achievement” auction gala Saturday, April 25 at The Club at Grandezza in Estero. The “Breaking Par Award” was created to recognize an individual who has demonstrated long-standing commitment and passion for JA’s mission through volunteerism, advocacy and generosity.
Dr. Kauanui is the department chair of management, director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship and a professor of management at the Lutgert College of Business. She has been a board member for JASWFL since July, 2014, and has volunteered in support of the JA CEO Academy since 2011. Dr. Kauanui and her husband, Joe, are among the Grandezza residents that have committed years of hard work and generosity to becoming the prominent funding source for JASWFL’s CEO Academy.
“It’s been an amazing experience working with students through the CEO Academy,” Dr. Kauanui said. “Teaching these children entrepreneurship is so important, because it puts their destiny in their hands. It levels the playing field and makes business much less exclusive. It gives the kids reason to believe in themselves and believe that they have the potential and the ability to do something important in their lives. With the CEO Academy, we give kids the tools they need to learn valuable critical thinking skills to fix problems, large and small.”
Dr. Kauanui came to FGCU in 2007 from the College of Business at California State Polytechnic University. She is an active researcher, keynote speaker and workshop presenter and has authored and co-authored over 80 publications in her academic career. Her primary areas of teaching, consulting, research and specialization are entrepreneurship, negotiation, spirituality at work, leadership, organizational behavior and financial and strategic management.
“It’s very important to me that the work I do makes a difference for society at large, and JA is such an important part of that,” Dr. Kauanui said. “The kids are able to see how they can create things that bring value to society and make the world a better place, and they’re very excited about solving societal problems that need to be fixed. The CEO Academy makes that possible.”
Tickets are still available for the “Breaking Par for Junior Achievement” auction gala and charity golf tournament. For the first time this year, the event will span two days. The reception and gala dinner with silent and live auctions and casino-style gaming will take place Saturday, April 25, and the Shotgun Scramble Golf Tournament, luncheon and awards ceremony will take place Sunday, April 26. Limited seating is still available for the Saturday auction gala and award presentation for $50 per guest. Sponsorships are available at all levels, from the Hole Sponsorship at $100 to the Title Sponsorship at $15,000. Current sponsors include U.S. Trust and The News-Press Media Group.
The proceeds from this two-day event will include a major donation to the CEO Academy – a “model” week-long business school summer camp held for rising high school juniors and seniors in partnership with Florida Gulf Coast University. Proceeds from previous Breaking Par events have provided funding totaling more than $110,000 in support of the JA CEO Academy and additional JA programming. The Academy offers intense interaction with local leaders and high-energy teambuilding activities. Teaching the value of free enterprise, business and economics has been proven to give young people a better opportunity to succeed in our global economy.
To register for “Breaking Par for Junior Achievement,” or to participate through a sponsorship or auction item donation, visit http://www.jaswfl.org/grandezza-golf-tournament or contact Anne Frazier at Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida at 239-225-2590 or email@example.com.
About Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida (JASWFL)
Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy. Through a dedicated volunteer network, Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida, Inc.’s 5-8-GRADUATE program focuses attention and resources on 5th grade, 8th grade and high school students in Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties. The program focuses on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy. Today, JA reaches 4.4 million students per year in 117 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.8 million students served by operations in 121 other countries worldwide. For more information about Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida visit www.JASWFL.org or contact Anne Frazier at 239-225-2590 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Retina Health Center now offers ILUVIEN, a new treatment for diabetic macular edema recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Retina Health Center Drs. Hussein Wafapoor and Alexander Eaton are the first physicians in the U.S. to treat diabetic macular edema (DME) patients with ILUVIEN since the FDA approval of the ILUVIEN implant for the treatment of DME. Diabetic Macular Edema is a complication of diabetes caused by accumulation of fluid in the macula or central portion of the eye and is a leading cause of vision loss in people with diabetes.
An injectable implant, ILUVIEN is designed to release and maintain a concentration of steroids inside the eye for up to three years. A tiny tube is inserted in the back of the eye where DME typically forms, and the implant slowly releases a corticosteroid for 36 months. ILUVIEN was approved by the FDA to treat DME in patients who were previously treated with a course of corticosteroids and did not have a clinically significant rise in fluid pressure inside the eye.
“This exciting technology is able to deliver a low-dose corticosteroid drug for three years or more and offers great promise for patients with this disease,” said Eaton. “Dr. Wafapoor and I are pleased to be the first retinal specialists in the nation to offer this exciting new option for patients with diabetic macular edema.”
According to Eaton, the response of patients has been overwhelmingly positive. Prior to the approval of the ILUVIEN implant, patients typically required treatments every one to three months with Avastin, Lucentis, Eylea, Ozurdex and Triamcinolone. For patients receiving treatment with these older options, which are done by injecting a medication into the patients’ eye, the prospect of reducing the number of treatments from 36 to 1, in the best case scenario, to somewhere in between in patients with more advanced disease, is a positive one.
“Hopefully, this will be the first of many advances that will help reduce the number of treatments for patients who receive frequent injections. We are excited that Retina Health Center is the first site selected to offer this promising medication, and we continue to work to bring new groundbreaking treatments to our patients as soon as they become available,” added Eaton.
The ILUVIEN approval was based on clinical trial data, which showed that at month 24 after receiving the ILUVIEN implant, 28.7 percent of patients experienced an improvement of 15 letters or more from baseline in their best corrected visual acuity on the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) eye chart. In other words, 28.7 percent of patients were able to see an improvement of three lines or more in their vision on the eye chart at the end of two years. By week 3 of follow-up, patients treated with ILUVIEN experienced a statistically significant improvement in visual acuity compared to the control group, and they maintained a statistically significant advantage over the control through completion of the trial at month 36.
Tommie Gibson, who lives in North Fort Myers, received an ILUVIEN implant in his right eye on Jan. 22. In the past, he has required numerous eye injections of Lucentis and Triesence, and he is excited about the prospect of going three years without another treatment. Since receiving the very small device, which is significantly smaller than the lead of a pencil, Gibson has noticed an improvement in his vision.
“Shortly following the ILUVIEN implant insertion, he has been able to read with the right eye using reading glasses, which he was not able to do before,” said Eaton. “His distance vision has also improved, and he can now see birds at a distance with that eye, something he could not do before the implant. It has been less than two months since he received the device, and he is looking forward to many more years of great vision without the need of additional injections.”
Joan Kurek, who lives in Naples, received her ILUVIEN implant on Feb. 6 and is pleased with the progress she has seen.
“I’m now able to read fine print, like the numbers on a business card or the zip code on mail, which I was not able to do before the treatment,” said Kurek. “Overall, my experience has been positive and it’s helping me regain my self-confidence.”
While some patients with more advanced disease may require combination treatments that include the older medications, the combined therapy in those patients seems to be working better and faster than monotherapy with the older agents and should result in better vision over the life of the device.
“For patients with diabetic macular edema receiving frequent eye injections, as well as those with an incomplete response to Avastin, Eylea and Lucentis, this is a great option,” said Eaton.
For patients with vascular disease who have had a stroke or heart attack, there is evidence to suggest that use of Avastin, Lucentis and Eylea may increase the risk of a stroke or heart attack. In addition, long term use of Avastin, Lucentis and Eylea can lead to elevated intraocular pressure, glaucoma, optic nerve damage and vision loss. ILUVIEN does not pose similar risks. While in some patients ILUVIEN may cause a rise in eye pressure, called ocular hypertension, in those eligible for the device under FDA guidelines, the FAME study found that ocular hypertension was manageable with eye drops. Although in patients who have not had cataract surgery, ILUVIEN will cause a cataract to develop, cataracts can be expertly managed by the many excellent cataract surgeons in the area. As with any medication, the benefits and risks of ILUVIEN should be reviewed with your eye doctor prior to use.
Eaton suggests that patients receiving monthly or frequent injections should ask their eye doctor whether they would be a good candidate for this device. As the first and most experienced physicians using this device in the U.S., Drs. Wafapoor and Eaton are also available to help determine if ILUVIEN is an option for those who are considering it.
Retina Health Center and the Macular Degeneration Research Center were established in 2002 by Dr. Alexander M. Eaton, a long-time Southwest Florida resident, who has been practicing ophthalmology in Lee and Collier counties for more than 20 years. Dr. Eaton has been the principal investigator for numerous studies to prevent and treat macular degeneration, and has invented numerous medical devices for use by patients and physicians that are used worldwide. For more information on the latest studies or to make an appointment, call 239-337-3337 in Fort Myers or 239-793-5200 in Naples, or visit www.retinahealthcenter.com.
Lee County to host USA Gymnastics-Florida Gold and Platinum State Championships March 27-29 at Harborside Event Center
Lee County will host the USA Gymnastics-Florida Level 8, 9, 10 and Xcel Gold and Platinum State Championships March 27-29 at Harborside Event Center in Fort Myers. The meet, sponsored by Lightning City Gymnastics and Cheerleading, will bring 400 to 600 gymnasts from around the state to compete in Fort Myers. The meet will be open to the public. Admission is $15 for adults and $10 for children ages 5-12, cash only.
Approximately 2,000 people, including gymnasts and their families, are expected to travel to Fort Myers for the meet, resulting in 1,000 hotel room nights and an estimated direct economic impact of $395,000 for Lee County.
The Junior Olympic Program allows developing gymnasts to advance at their own pace with a solid foundation of basic and competitive skills to ensure safety. The Xcel Program is designed to offer a broad-based, affordable competitive experience outside the traditional Junior Olympic Program in order to attract and retain a diverse group of athletes. For more information on the event, visit www.lightningcity.com.
About Lee County Sports Development
Created in 2003 to meet the growing demand for sports development in Lee County, the Lee County Sports Development office is recognized by the Florida Sports Foundation as one of the state’s 25 Regional Sports Commissions. The Lee County Sports Development office leads the recruitment and implementation of amateur and professional sports events and activities in Lee County, with the goal of providing economic impact to Lee County. Through local partnerships the Lee County Sports Development office provides services designed to address the needs of local, national and international sports entities including housing, access to venues, event management, transportation assistance, event promotion, marketing and local sponsorship opportunities. For more information, call 239-344-5201 or visit www.leecountysports.org.
Only a few spaces left for classes; community partners invited
The Southwest Florida Public Service Academy will host a “Be a Police Recruit for the Day Academy” on Friday, March 27 at the academy, 4312 Michigan Ave. in Fort Myers. The course is modeled after the Civilian Police Academy, and participants will receive an up-close and personal view of Basic Recruit training and the requirements of the training program.
Local business and community leaders and members of the media are invited to sign up for the program. The program will include a tour of the academy, demonstrations of defensive tactics, response to scenarios such as loitering at a convenience store and responding to a burglar alarm, and training on administering the standardized field sobriety tests for DUI traffic stops. Lunch will be provided, and all participants will receive a t-shirt.
“You won’t find a better way to learn about the dangerous and difficult jobs the men and women who serve as law enforcement officers do than by attending the one-day Academy program,” said Todd G. Everly, academy director. “The instructors are experts in their fields because they are current, in-the-field professionals. The objective of this program is to produce informed citizens who understand what our law enforcement professionals experience every day.”
The course fee is $50, and registration forms are available at the academy’s website, www.swfpsa.org. Seating is limited and registrations will fill quickly.
The mission of the Southwest Florida Public Service Academy is to serve citizens by providing students with the highest quality certified education in Criminal Justice, Firefighting and Public Works. The academy is a program of The School District of Lee County and is open to high school graduates or those with a GED equivalent who are 18 years old or older.
About The School District of Lee County: Lee County Public Schools is the ninth-largest district in Florida and the 33rd-largest district in the United States. The District educates more than 86,000 students in grades K-12 and is a model for others in the state and around the nation. With approximately 10,000 full- and part-time employees, the District is one of the county’s largest employers. As the District builds new schools and renovates and expands existing facilities to accommodate the unprecedented growth experienced in the last several years, the District has become one of the area’s largest developers.
To educate the aging population about options for senior living, Senior Choice at Home is hosting a free lunch and learn seminar. The seminar will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, March 26 at Estero Country Club At The Vines, 19501 Vintage Trace Circle in Fort Myers. The program is free and open to the public, but guests must register by calling 239-349-3004.
According to The Alliance for Aging Research, the number of seniors age 65 and older is expected to triple by 2050, with 10,000 baby boomers turning 65 every day until 2030. The seminars will focus on considerations for senior living options including comprehensive long-term care, retirement communities versus home care choices, lifestyle and more.
Senior Choice at Home by Gulf Coast Village is a membership-based program that provides comprehensive long-term care and personal services for older adults enabling them to live independently at home. Services include personal care coordination, home inspections, medically necessary transportation and emergency response system services. In addition, referral services are offered for social and wellness programs, home health services and companion care. For more information on Senior Choice at Home, visit www.seniorchoiceathome.com or call 239-362-9153.