Useppa Home Companion: Laughter, Stories, Music and More – Thoughts and Photographs By UseppaGin – For one night only on Feb 16th in the historic Tarpon Bar Theater, the Useppa Players took turns on stage singing songs, telling bad jokes, performing skits. The vigorous Sound Crew added any necessary punctuation. Island Poet Virginia Amsler read a few poems from her new book Spirits on an Island. A band played, a comfort dinner of meatloaf was served. Beautiful downtown Useppa Island was the place to be. Thanks to the Useppa Historical Society, and Rona, Dan, Linda, Kurt, Judith, Allie, Mother Shane, Paul and Aimee.
President’s Day and More – Words and thoughts by UseppaGin – Families in and around the pool, sailors out on the water, Bill’s Grille on shore, croquet games, lunch on the patio, boats at the Marina…. Life on Useppa is a gift.
Lessons for Useppans About Complex Water Quality Issues – Written by Museum Board Chair Bob Stevens, photos by UseppaGin – Three water quality advocate organizations were the attraction Saturday night, February 9th at the Barbara Sumwalt Museum. Their representatives talked about a very real concern for all of us connected to Useppa Island. Our beloved little island is touched by both Red Tides and by algae blooms. The blooms develop from water run-off from Lake Okeechobee and the Caloosahatchee River watershed. The three organizations are working very hard, with the best available scientific information, to lessen the impact of the water run-offs. Daniel Andrews from Captains for Clean Water, Rae Anne Wessel from the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, and Steve Davis from the Everglades Foundation spoke explaining the problems and offering hope for the future. Solutions are in sight, and the Florida Governor has put his leadership support to the efforts, a heartening change from previous state administrations.
Super Bowl, Super Fun – thoughts and photos by UseppaGin – A father and son watching the game, friends around a table, good food, standing for the National Anthem, and a Patriots win. For some life just couldn’t get any better.
Super Bowl on Useppa – Comments and photographs by UseppaGin – What better place to watch the Super Bowl than on Useppa Island? Boats in the Marina, good food, drinks, and football on the big screen in the Tarpon Bar. Life doesn’t get much better… unless you are a Patriots’ fan.
Thank You and Good-Bye to Paul Webb-Martin, Head of the Useppa Service Department – Thoughts and photos by UseppaGin – Paul Webb-Martin, recent big game hunter in Africa and newly appointed head of the Useppa Service Department, began work on the island one week before Hurricane Charley hit Friday the 13th of August 2004. Paul had just left Zimbabwe with his wife Jane and three young daughters because of civil unrest. Gar Beckstead and Tim Fitzsimmons helped give him a new start in this country. After Charley, Paul wasn’t dealing with political disruption. He was dealing with a natural disaster. Paul helped Useppa rebuild, and for fifteen years there is not a job on Useppa he has not been willing to do to make the island a better place. Whether down in the ditch with a broken water pipe, up in the air on a lift rebuilding an osprey nest, loading and unloading the barge, raking the beach… Paul has done it all. Island homeowners, employees, management, contractors and crews held a picnic January 26th, a celebration of gratitude and thanksgiving for the man who touched all of our lives.
Something More Than Candles – Pictures and words by UseppaGin – Family and longtime friends gathered on the island on January 26th to celebrate Gar Beckstead’s 80th birthday. It was a small, quiet dinner party at the Collier Inn for the father of today’s Useppa until… the fireworks. Happy Birthday Garfield from all who call Useppa home.