At the writing of this article, this writer is not certain that we have resumed life as normal in Naples. Our country experienced a spreading virus that also spread fear and concern among families and friends –and had us keeping our distance from those we love.
None of which was easy for any of us – cancellations were everywhere, streets were vacant. But, ever the optimist, I hope that these summer months find you and all you love safe and healthy. These months are the time to remember the local businesses and organizations in our community that are perhaps still not open or if they are they might be struggling. The farmers markets that the vendors relied on that income in total to support their families – find those that are open and make sure you stop by and encourage them as they move forward. The local restaurants that don’t have the ability to fall back on a corporate support program. Your church of choice that had to do what churches never want to do – close their doors.
The local attractions that are an integral part of our community and will rely on their community coming together to support them. Naples Historical Society and Palm Cottage celebrated their 125th anniversary on March 9, 2020. Palm Cottage was
constructed in 1895 and its tabby concrete construction has kept it standing through multiple major storms with very minimal
damage to the original structure. So this human crisis will not damage this phenomenal landmark in our community – learn of
the history of your community by visiting the Naples Historical Society.
Another iconic landmark in Naples – the Naples Zoo and Botanical Gardens – in 2019 they celebrated their 100 years as
a botanical garden and 50 years as a zoo. Dr. Henry Nehrling founded his tropical gardens in 1919; and his passion for nature
and sharing his knowledge continue to inspire the leaders of the current landmark. In 1954 Julius Fleischmann reopened the
botanical gardens as Caribbean Gardens and renovated the space, breathing new life into this beautiful space.
Fifty years ago “Jungle” Larry and “Safari” Jane introduced animals into the gardens. This writer had the privilege of working with “Safari” Jane Tetzloff for several years as a member of the Board of the Southwest Florida Area Attractions Association.
Her dedication to this community inspired seasoned residents and newcomers to invest in our community and support our local
The Conservancy of Southwest Florida has a physical presence adjacent to the Naples Zoo but its reach to conserve our natural
resources involves our five county region. The Conservancy was founded in 1964.
One of our newest landmarks is the Naples Botanical Gardens – founded in 1993 with construction beginning in 2008 and
opening in 2009. Located on 170 acres there are beautiful gardens representing many lands and cultures. Special exhibits draw
people in and special events are held during the day and evenings in the gardens.
Pay attention to your local attraction or theatre to find out when their seasons resume so that you can be sure to support them.
The art galleries – both retail and working gallery spaces will need your patronage as we work our way back to pre-virus days.
My sincere wish for all our readers is that you are safe and well and that we will all be able to enjoy the rest of 2020 without major events.