PGA Golfers come to Naples, Florida

The 2007 version of the ACE Group Classic is coming to Naples, Florida and will be held at the Quail West Golf & Country Club between February 19th to the 25th. Some of the top Senior PGA players will be in attendance and competing for the $1.6 million dollars in prize money. This is a popular stop on the Champions Tour and is always well attended.
Some of the well-known players that are expected to play are Gary Player, Jay Haas, Tom Kite, Curtis Stange and Craig Stadler. Lee Trevino and Hale Irwin are also possibilities.
The best deal of the week is to buy the Ultimate Golf Experience Book for $125 bucks and it will get you into the tournament for the week, plus it gives you entrance to some of the best golf courses in the area. You can play 72 rounds of discounted golf at courses such as Bonita Bay West, Grandezza, Miromar Lakes, Olde Cypress, Palmira, Shadow Wood, TwinEagles and Verandah.
I had the opportunity to volunteer at this tournament for a few years and it was a blast. I had the on course boom microphone and followed the leaders down the fairway for their respective shots. It was great being within 10 feet of Tom Watson while he drew a hybrid 240 yards around a hazard and onto the green. Awesome! These guys are very competitive, but they’ve been around long enough that they know how to relax and have some good hearted fun with the fans. Everyone who enjoys golf will enjoy the day. Even these pros love Naples.

2007 Spring Appraisars Faire – March 3rd.

The 2007 Spring Appraisars Faire, presented by the Marco Island Historical Society, will me held at the Marco Island Civil Air Patrol Hangar on March 3rd from 10:00am to 4:00pm. Wes Cowan, Nan Chisholm and Ken Farmer, who are featured appraisers from Antiques Roadshow and History Detectives, along with Southwest Florida appraisers, will evaluate your antiques and family treasures. The cost is $15 per item for non-MIHS members and $10 per item for MIHS members. Limit is three items and they must be able to be carried. All proceeds from the Appraisal Faire benefit the building fund for the Marco Island History Museum.

von Liebig Art Center – February

Following is the schedule for the von Liebig Art Center for the month of February. 

Continuing from January 20 to March 11 – Golf in American Art and Fairways, Flags and Traps: An NAA Members Juried Exhibition.  
February 3 (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.) – Art in the Park. Naples’ oldest outdoor art festival celebrates its 50th anniversary season by showcasing artwork from Naples Art Association members. February’s Featured Artist is Debbie Hummel-Marconi. Held in Cambier Park and on Park St., alongside The von Liebig Art Center. Free admission.
February 3 (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.) – Nuts About The von Liebig. Bring your family to The von Liebig Art Center for a day filled with fun! Activities will include the legendary coconut painting, which this event was named after, face painting, entertainment, and light refreshments. Free.
February 3 and 4 (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) – Scholastic Community Book Sale. The Scholastic Community Book Sale will feature half priced books and educational products including newly released works, award-winning titles, children’s classics, interactive software, and current bestsellers from more than 150 publishers. All proceeds from the Book Sale will benefit The von Liebig Art Center’s library, which is free and open to the public.
February 5 (9 a.m. – 12 p.m.) – The Thai Art of Fruit and Vegetable Carving. Imagine sitting down to a meal and seeing your table graced by an arrangement of fruits and vegetables creatively carved into the shape of exotic flowers! The Thai art of fruit and vegetable carving was once a skill only taught and inherited by women; now it can be part of your home repertoire. This workshop will teach students everything they need to know to create their own carvings. Fee is $50 for NAA members/$60 for non-members plus $25 materials fee for all.
February 8 and 9 (9 a.m. – 4 p.m.) – Golden Butterfly – Introduction to Japanese Embroidery. Golden Butterfly is a quick and easy design to stitch. The design incorporates Japanese embroidery techniques (transferring the design; couching; laying a weft and a horizontal foundation; and line of staggered diagonals). The class will include an overview of the embroidery phases, a brief description of the 1600 years of tradition, and a video of Japanese embroidery pieces. The design will fit into a small frame or glass container. Fee is $200 for NAA members/$225 for non-members plus a $50 kit for all.
February 12 (12 – 2 p.m.) – Lunch With the Arts. Master Gardener Anna Deem will highlight edible flowers, exotic salad ingredients and sustainable gardening. Lunch sponsored and provided by Food & Thought Organic Market and Restaurant. Admission is free for Naples Art Association members and customers of series sponsor Comerica Wealth and Institutional Management (and Comerica Bank, who show proof of relationship), and $5 for others. Lunch is served on a first-come, first-served basis, while everyone is invited to stay for the lectures.
February 12 to 15 (10 a.m. – 3 p.m.) – Introduction to Botanical Painting. Leonardo da Vinci said, “He who despises painting has no love for the philosophy in nature.” What better way to show your appreciation for this philosophy than by painting it? An introduction to basic techniques of botanical painting in watercolor will be covered in this workshop. Students will learn how to accurately draw and paint botanicals from live specimens. Instructor Rose Pellicano will work with students to each them to pay attention to light and shade. Fee is $360 for NAA members/$400 for non-members.
February 17 (9 a.m. – 4 p.m.) – Getting Creative with Clay. WANTED—creative people to work with clay! Individuals must possess a desire to make glorious works of art and also relieve stress. Join us for an introductory workshop, where students will learn to create their own pieces through techniques like coil building and throwing. No experience is necessary and everyone is welcome. Fee is $50 for NAA members/ $75 for non-members.
February 24 and 25 (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) – 28th annual Naples National Art Festival. Two hundred and seventy-five artists from more than 35 states will bring their fine art, fine crafts, prints, lithographs, photography, sculpture, glass, jewelry and other masterpieces to the 28th annual Naples National Art Festival. This high quality juried art festival  takes place in Cambier Park, located in downtown Naples. There is a voluntary $3 donation that benefits the programs at Naples Art Association’s von Liebig Art Center. The Naples National Art Festival was voted the 11th Best Art Festival in the Country by Sunshine Artist magazine in 2005.
February 25 to 27 (9 a.m. – 3 p.m.) – Naples and Nature I painting workshop. Let’s take advantage of the beautiful landscape in Naples! Grab your supplies and join instructor Kevin Shea on daytrips to the coast and inland to paint. This workshop will include highly descriptive processes, instruction, and daily painting exercises. Designed with both novices and professionals in mind. Students will work at their own pace while enjoying their surroundings. Fee is $275 for NAA members/$300 for non-members.
February 26 – Session IV Studio Art Classes for Adults begin. Most classes run three to six weeks. Full schedule online at

The Art Center is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Admission to the exhibitions, library and gift shop is free. For more information, the public may call 239-262-6517 or visit 


Jane’s Cafe on Third, Olde Naples

Hearing great things about Jane’s Cafe in Olde Naples, I decided it was time for a visit one day last week. 

Touting a lovely al fresca dining area both in the back (complete with fountains and lovely plantings) as well as the front, it’s easy to see why Jane’s has become a favorite for the locals.  Just opening last June, not too many snobirds have had an opportunity yet for their visit, but I’m confident they’ll fall in love with it too.  Jane’s place has a very welcoming atmosphere with cool lilac colors and local artist’s works adorning the walls.  Jane’s provides a nice selection for breakfast, as well as lunch, from the traditional menu items to the specialities of the house.  My guest had a lovely herbal tea with a scone that was so fresh and tasty, she said she’d return at a later time to experience the lunch menu items.   I had the tuna wrap with avocado.  I must say that everything was very fresh but I was disappointed in the tuna itself.  It was so overly salted I left half of it on the plate.  I don’t think I’ve ever had tuna as salty as what was in this lovely wrap and was compelled to tell our server.  However, even though that was not up to my standards, perhaps the chef just go a little carried away that day.   I am definitely going back to try again as the atmosphere is just what Naples needed.  Jane’s is a reminder of our now-closed, beloved Hilde’s that was loved and visited by all who were strolling downtown and just bumped into it or the seasoned resident who knew where to get a ladies sandwich in a relaxing atmosphere. Kudos to Jane and Tony Wood for filling a much needed niche.    


Cocohatchee Nature Center

Located on U.S. 41, in Naples, Florida, The Cocohatchee Nature Center is between Immokalee Road and Wiggins Pass on the west side of the highway. The Center offers a variety of services from nature tours, to kayak or canoe rentals to sunset cruise.

There are five nature tours daily. These are a little over an hour and are narrated through the Cocohatchee River estuary and to the Gulf of Mexico at Wiggins Pass. You’ll see mangrove islands, dolphins and have the possibility of seeing many different types of birds including the bald eagle.

The Cocohatchee One departs nightly one hour before sunset for a 1 1/2 hour cruise at sunset.

Get close to nature by renting one of their kayak or canoes to explore along the river or the back bays along the Gulf beaches.

The Cocohatchee Nature Center is a wonderful addition to the Naples experience. You can find more information at or by calling 239-592-1200.